Smells Like Pee

Weird title, I know. It’s my paddle float that smells like pee. No, it’s never been peed on and my boat has never been peed in. It is the NRS Sea Kayak Paddlefloat (NRS Sea Kayak Paddle Float) and is a little over a year old. It started smelling strongly shortly after I got it. I figured that it was some strange lake or sea bio-weirdness that I could get rid of like a do with neoprene booties but no…

I have tried using MULTIPLE soaks with Mirazyme and it helped some until it got wet again then the smell returned. I tried increasing the concentration but to no avail. I tried soaking in Baking Soda and Vinegar and after multiple soaks and kneadings it smelled fine once dried out…Until I used it again in the boat and the smell returned.

I contacted NRS for advice and they got right back to me with a very professional response. They advised using Mirazyme, Sink the Stink or Baking Soda with Vinegar. So I had tried 2 out of three and they said that I could send it back to them for warranty evaluation using their hassle free process. Honestly, I don’t think it is pee but something that smells like it.

I know that I could talk to the people I bought the float from but times are tough, they are friends and have no responsibility for the smell of this thing. I don’t think that NRS does either and I don’t want to hang them up. I’m fine with their response and I expect that if I sent it to them they would replace it. I just don’t feel great about putting this on them.

What I am looking to y’all for is maybe a homebased recipe for getting rid of what smells like pee on my floatbag. Since Sink the Stink is another enzyme based deodorizer I have my doubts that it would work. What do you advise? I’m in a time crunch as I am leaving on a 3 week trip to BC shortly so don’t have time to wait for results. If it IS pee it could attract bears and I hate having bears in camp.


Any of my gear, including paddle float, will start to have a funky smell if it does not get washed in fresh water and Dawn, fresh water rinsed, and then air dried following a paddle or trip. The longer it sits in a wet/damp, rolled up state until the next paddle, the longer it holds the nasty smell.

For short term relief, try some Odor-Ban.

1 Like

3% Hydrogen peroxide - let it sit for 5 -10 minutes then wash well with water.

It may cross link the neoprene bladder but I doubt it.

Don’t sue me if it destroys the bladder.

1 Like

My better half had a purse that smelled like pee from the day she bought it.

Turned out that is was the type of plastic used that outgased that nasty smell.


This is different. I know the smell of funky gear and this ain’t that. I’ll try Dawn.

I’ll try Hydrogen Peroxide

Ammonia is slightly basic. Try and acid, like vinegar.

1 Like

Vinegar didn’t do it. Experimenting with Hydrogen Peroxide right now.

As CraigF said above, it’s most likely the material. Some waterproof coatings just stink. Treating a chemical problem like it’s a biological one won’t help. It sucks, but you’ll probably either have to live with it or get a different paddle float.

FWIW, my experience with enzyme treatments is that they’re best at removing money from your wallet; beyond that they’re pretty useless. Keeping your gear from getting funky is a simple matter of rinsing it in clean, fresh water and allowing it to dry completely between uses. Drying it in the sun will kill any “bugs”. Using soap and water certainly won’t hurt anything, but unless your gear is dirty, it probably won’t make much difference.

You may need to stuff your footwear with newspaper for a couple of hours before allowing it to air dry. Again, the sun helps.


Hydrogen Peroxide seemed to have done the job. Soaked, kneaded and dried. Got it wet yesterday paddling and the smell hasn’t returned. Fingers crossed. Thanks for the tip!

1 Like

Yeah a fairly benign but strong oxidizing agent. If it was actually pee from a cat or something like that it would work, impurities in rubber and plastic often have amine or sulfur containing impurities, so they can be oxidized too.