Seven ways to tackle warm-weather smells

Summer brings with it sun, sea and sand - but it can also mean reeking bins, whiffy drains and stale air. Here's how to keep things fresh in your home even when the heat is on.

If it ever feels to you like smells are more vivid in the summer, you're not wrong. Hot, humid air picks up odours, making them seem stronger and carrying them further.

We love it when the summer air wafts the scent of freshly mown grass or sheets drying on the line in our direction. But when it comes to less pleasant smells like stink from the bins, there's nothing for it but to take action.

Try these six tips to tackle lingering odours that might have gone unnoticed in the chillier months.

1. Let some air in

Good air circulation isn't just a quick fix for a bad pong in your home - a fresh draught helps to prevent dust build-up as well as deodorising your rooms.

Since it's summer, it's easy to keep windows open for much of the day: try opening some on the top floor and some at ground level on the other side, so a breeze can flow right through the house.

Bad smells still lingering? Blast them out with Febreze Air Heavy Duty, which is 2x more powerful at eliminating odours and leaves a fresh, subtle scent.

2. Freshen up your kitchen bins

All those bits of food waste are a prime culprit for bad smells at home. So roll up your sleeves, pop on your rubber gloves and wash out your bin with hot water and a liquid disinfectant - you'll soon notice the difference.

Prevention is better than cure, so try to make sure you take out the rubbish regularly, rather than waiting until it's full. Also give packaging like tins and bottles a rinse before throwing them away.

3. Clear out the drains

Trapped dirt plus water is a recipe for nasty whiffs, so making sure your sinks, baths and showers drain freely is a great way to freshen your home.

When the sink is dry, pour a cup of bicarbonate of soda down the drain. Then follow it with two cups of boiling water, wait a few minutes and add another cup of baking soda and a cup of white vinegar. Pop in the plug and you should be able to hear all the ingredients fizzing below and dissolving blockages.

4. Tackle cooking smells

Light meals like fresh fish are a perfect summer supper. But cooking smells from seafood can linger for hours in the kitchen and spread across the whole house, especially on warm days.

A simple way to get a zestier scent is to take any leftover lemons after squeezing them over your dinner and pop them in a pan of water. Bring to the boil and simmer until their fresh smell has taken over.

5. Febreze your soft furnishings

Sofas and armchairs get so much use that it's no wonder that they pick up a bit of a whiff - especially if you've got pets who love to curl up on them.

If yours aren't washable or you simply don't have the time, help is at hand with Febreze Fabric Refresher. It doesn't just covering up smells only for them to return when the scent fades. Instead, the odour elimination technology neutralises bad smells trapped in fabrics for long-lasting freshness.

6. Perk up your carpet - naturally

Those lovely deep-pile carpets make your home a quiet, comfortable haven, but they can also be a magnet for dirt and smells.

Regular vacuuming only goes so far, so once in a while make a point to freshen them up. Sprinkle bicarbonate of soda over the whole carpet and gently but firmly scrub it into the fibres. Leave it overnight while the powder absorbs any smells, then hoover it up the next day.

7. Spruce up your dishwasher

The dishwasher is a lifesaver, but with all the muck washed off from dirty plates, pots and pans, it's no wonder the inside can begin to whiff. Luckily the dishwasher will even do most of the hard work of cleaning itself. Just fill a mug with white vinegar and place it on the top rack.

Leave the rest of the dishwasher empty and run a normal cycle. Leave it a little while for the vinegar smell to disperse and you'll notice there's nothing but freshness left behind.

How do you stop annoying summer smells? Tell us your tips in the comments below.