Updated: Mar 17, 2022
Ozone is the most powerful sterilant in the world. Ozone uses the chemical reaction of oxidation to break down unwanted molecules. O3 is an unstable molecule that, when it comes into contact with another molecule of any kind, will destroy it through the process of oxidation. Bacteria and viruses are destroyed when ozone comes into contact with the cell wall and breaks it down on a molecular level, effectively destroying the cell entirely.
When should I get an ozone treatment?
An ozone treatment by your detailer is done using an ozone generator. Typically, this process is done by sending specific-wavelength UV light at oxygen atoms. The generator will be placed in your vehicle for as long as necessary to remove any odor. Ozone odor removal is permanent, provided you have removed the source of the smell. Your detailer will thoroughly clean your car before the ozone treatment. It’s important to make sure that the cause of any smell is taken care of. In the case of mildew, make sure you have dealt with the source of the dampness as well.
One of the biggest causes of vehicle odors that can’t be removed is tobacco smoke. Phenol, an invisible chemical present in secondhand smoke, is responsible for irritation of the eyes and respiratory tract. An ozone treatment will completely oxidize any remaining phenol gas, effectively neutralizing the odor. In this case, the odor will not return because the molecules have been destroyed rather than masked or filtered.
Ozone is a gas which will dissipate after about half an hour after treatment, so there is no risk of exposure from your vehicle. Your detailer will be sure to sufficiently air out your vehicle before returning it to you.