How to Get Smell Out of Wetsuit

When wetsuits are improperly handled, it’s not long before an unpleasant odor develops within them. The stale stench of mildew and ammonia are common to wetsuits and often present a challenge to treat and deodorize.

Fortunately, there exist several tips and tricks for freshening wetsuits to ensure that an odor never returns. By following the below solutions, you can get rid of the mustiness within the wetsuit so that it’s always smelling clean and fresh.

Smell Removal Solutions for Wetsuits

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1. Rinse with Fresh Water

In many cases, you can effectively prevent a wetsuit odor from developing by rinsing it with fresh water after spending time within the ocean. Usually a hose within the backyard will work best for washing alway all of the odorous residues.

2. Shower in It

As another option, you can go home within the wetsuit and immediately jump within the shower. This will allow you to apply body soap to the neoprene and strip the suit off within an environment where it is sure to get clean. As a not of precaution, you will want to make sure to wash away all soap residues before hanging it to dry within a shaded location. As a precaution, avoid taking a hot or warm shower while you have the wetsuit on as this can lead to harmful stiffening effects within the neoprene.

3. Don’t Pee in It!!!

It may feel great to pee within the suit during a surfing session, however the resulting ammonia odor will almost always make you regret it. If the deed must be dude, make sure that you will continue to reside within the ocean for 20-30 minutes for the urine chemicals to diffuse within the sea.

4. Dry Wetsuit Inside Out

After washing the ocean residue away, proceed to hang the wetsuits inside out while air drying them within a cool dry location. Doing this will allow for of the bodily odors that may have developed within the wetsuit to air out and be lifted off during the evaporation process.

5. Quick Dry

It is important that the wetsuit is hung in within a location where it will be sure to to receive a steady flow of cool air where it will be able to dry quickly. It is important that the wetsuits don't remain moist of too long, as this can lead to rotting and the development of mildew within the neoprene.

6. Buy Wetsuit Cleaner

In cases where common body soap is not being effective at lifting the odor, specialty soap from your local surf shop will work well at eliminating the embedded odor. These specialty soaps are often more gentle on the neoprene and are more effective at eliminating odors within the wetsuits.

7. Avoid Hot Water, Sun, and Bleach

These deadly trio must be avoided at all cost. If the dry neoprene is left within the sun it can quickly age and begin to crack. Additionally harsh cleaning chemicals like bleach can have the effect of eating away at the wetsuit material and cause unwanted damage. Finally, hot water can lead to unwanted stiffening of the neoprene fiber.


Photo credit: Joe Shlabotnik

Jan Stapenell
For myself
93 Years
St. Louis, Missouri

I was given a wet suit, its brand new but because the previous owner was a
smoker the wet suit smells of smoke. How can I gid the suit of this disgusting
smell pease

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