What does a Former Meth Lab Smell Like?

smells-meth-labThe chemicals associated with meth production can leave lingering smells behind in affected properties. In fact the smell of meth has been compared to the smell or urine or rotten eggs (1).

Generally the the chemicals used in in producing meth can be put in the following categories:

  • Salts and Metals
  • Solvents
  • Acids and basis

If you smell any of the following chemicals together it may indicate a former meth lab (2):

  • Acetic Acid
  • Acetic Anhydride
  • Ammonia
  • Benzyl Chloride
  • Hydroiodic Acid
  • Methylamine
  • Perchloric Acid
  • Phosphine
  • Sodium Hydroxide
  • Thionyl Chloride
  • Acetone
  • Benzene
  • Benzyl Chloride
  • Chloroform
  • Ethanol
  • Freon
  • Hexane
  • Isopropano
  • Methanol
  • Petroleum Ether
  • Pyridine
  • Aluminum
  • Lead Acetate
  • Aluminum
  • Magnesium
  • Mercuric Chloride
  • Potassium Metal
  • Kerosene
  • Sodium Acetate
  • Sodium Hydroxide
  • Sodium Metal

Signs Other than Smell that may indicate a former meth lab (2)

  • Covered Windows
  • Unusual Ventilation set ups
  • Higher than usual security
  • Dead Plants and grass
  • Excessive or unusual rubbish onsite (Packaging from cold and flu tablets, coffee filters, soft drink bottles with a whole on the top and hoses running out of it

What to do

It is important to inform the authorities and use a qualitfied remediator such as New Life Restorations to restore the property in accordance with the Clandestine Drug laboratory Remediation Guidelines.


  1. http://illinoisattorneygeneral.gov/methnet/recognizingmeth/outside.html
  2. https://public.health.oregon.gov/HealthyEnvironments/EnvironmentalExposures/HazardousSites/ClandestineDrugLabs/Pages/chemicals.aspx
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