Getting into a car that smells like manure can be disconcerting, frustrating, annoying, or even downright nauseating. And while it is not a very common issue to encounter, when it happens it can be so unpleasant that your ability to drive can be impaired.

As such, you must identify the source of this offensive smell. Doing so is necessary to be able to get rid of it. So, 

Why Does Your Car Smell Like Manure?

The most likely reason that your car smells like cow manure is that it has a clogged AC drain line. Clogged AC drain lines can cause water to sit stagnant inside the vehicle’s AC system for extended periods, during which bacteria can take hold and dispense the odor out of the vents.

If the water inside the AC system becomes contaminated with bacteria, it can easily produce a foul odor that many people liken to the smell of manure.

However, clogged AC drain lines aren’t the only reason behind an unexplained smell of manure.

Manure smell coming from the cars air conditioner

Other Reasons Your Car Might Smell Like Poop

  • A small animal, such as a rodent, is trapped inside the vehicle and fecal matter has started to accumulate. Alternatively, if the trapped animal dies inside the vehicle, the decomposing corpse can also produce a manure-like smell.
  • You may have driven over some excrement or dung, and your tires are dirty with fecal matter.
  • You may have somehow, inadvertently brought manure or fecal matter inside your car via your shoes or clothing.

Now that you have an inkling of why your car is smelling like manure, you must do something to get rid of the distracting smell.

Thankfully, there are multiple things you can do to get rid of the manure smell coming from your vehicle. Here are some things you can try.

How To Get Rid Of Manure Smell In Your Car

The very first thing you should do to get rid of the smell of manure (or any other unwanted smell) in your car is to ventilate it thoroughly.

Ventilating your car will help eliminate the smell of manure by allowing fresh air to circulate freely and dissipate any odor-causing molecules.

If the barnyard smell is coming out of the air conditioning vents, you should also consider changing the cabin air filter.

Depending on the underlying cause of the smell, ventilation alone might not be enough to get rid of the smell but, at the very least the smell will lessen in intensity

Cleaning to poopy smell out of the cars interior

Next, you should use an odor-neutralizing spray. These sprays, which can easily be bought online or at most auto supply brick-and-mortar stores, are a quick and effective method of masking offensive aromas until a more permanent option is found.

Then, you should clean your car’s carpets and upholstery. If the smell is very intense, you may have to get a professional deep cleaning. This will lessen the smell of manure by cleaning out any odor-causing molecules that have settled on the surface of the car’s interior.

Cleaning your car regularly (I’m an advocate of the once-a-month cleaning) will help you to keep nasty odors at bay.

Finally, if the smell of manure persists after trying all of these tips, you should take your car to a shop so that a professional can take a look at it with a trained eye.

If the smell of manure is being caused by stagnant, bacteria-ridden water in one of your car’s drain lines, for example, a trained mechanic will be able to identify the problem and provide a prompt solution.

Final Words On The Poopy Smell In Your Car

Finding yourself with a car that stinks of manure is a frustrating and challenging situation. The smell of manure can become so distracting that driving in a stinky car can be a risky proposition.

Thankfully, this is a problem that can be solved in a relatively simple manner, and there is plenty for you to try before resorting to more extreme, more expensive measures.