Dealing with pet urine in plywood subfloor

5 Replies

I am rehabbing a house with pet urine stains throughout the upstairs subfloor. I was hoping that all I need to do is cover the plywood with Kiltz and call it a day. Before i do that though I wanted advice on whether that would work or not.

I would rather not have to replace the entire subfloor. Your help is appreciated.

OdorXit is the product that was recommended to me by members at my REIA, and by MikeOH here at BP.

Had you done a forum search, you would have come across the following (although not in the order that I hanve them here - but I think I have them in best sequence):

Many other answers can be found in there - not sure how they will work though.

If the urine is in an upstairs floor, you have to be certain that the smell isn't coming through the floor into the downstairs.

Other than that, if it is dog urine or human urine, a really good coat of any paint should seal the smell in. Cat is a maybe, maybe not.

I suggest that you give the stains a good soak with an enzyme cleaner, let it dry, and then paint.

Paint is cheap enough so you don't lose anything by trying. Let the paint dry and then take a friend with a sensitive nose into the house and see if they can smell pet odors. You want to be sure before you replace the flooring over it.

Check behind the baseboards. There is often urine there. Dog can be washed off and sealed. Cat will probably have to have the bottom of the wallboard replaced.

If there are heating vents in the floor, wash those.

A lot of people won't notice faint dog smell, but everybody seems to be able to detect even the slightest smell of cat, so you have to be sure to get it all.

We just looked at a "cat house" today. All rooms downstairs have been ripped down to the bare floor or subfloor. The floors and lower walls look to be sprayed with a white substance (similar to what I've seen in a mold remediation). However, the smell still was unbelievable (I swear I can still smell it).

The upstairs and basement didn't smell as bad as the first floor of the house.

The house is way overpriced, but even if we got it for as cheap as we'd be willing to pay, I do wonder if you really can truly eliminate the smell? It's the typical "ugliest (and smelliest) house on the street" in a really cute neighborhood.


We bought a house that had a bad dog order also. The owners were breeding large dogs in the house. You could smell it on the front porch before the door was opened. After removing the carpets and padding we found large areas of urine. We repeatedly mopped them with a mixture of bleach and water. after it dried for several days we used a roller and coated it with Kilz.
Be aware that the smell could be coming from other areas as well such as walls and definitely don't forget about the HVAC. Probably coated with hair and dander. Have the ducts cleaned.
Best of luck.

Thanks, Jim, for the tips. I picked up a lot of good solutions for removing pet odors here on BP.

We didn't get the house. Apparently the smell of cat pee brings out tons of cash buyers, so we missed out! :-) But, we'll keep looking.


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