Why Does Your Litter Robot Smell?

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(Last Updated On: May 20, 2023)

As a Litter Robot 3 owner, you most likely bought it to make life easier for both you and your cat. But these machines are not infallible. While they can greatly help you to keep your litter box clean and ready for your cat to use any time, the Litter Robot can have an issue with smelling if not properly cared for. If you have noticed a strong ammonia or smelly litter odor from your Litter Robot, you need to consider the reasons for it in order to current the problem.

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5 Reasons Why Your Litter Robot 3 Smells

When your Litter-Robot 3 begins to smell, there is always a reason why. To help diagnose the problem, you should first look at these five scenarios:

You Aren’t Cleaning the Unit or You Need To Increase the Frequency of Cleaning

While the Litter Robot is a great way to keep your litter box clean for your cat, you still need to clean it every once in a while. That means not just emptying the tray of soiled litter, but actually cleaning and disinfecting it. Otherwise, the bacteria from your pet’s urine and feces can be left in the litter robot and cause odors to form.

It is important to remember that just because there is no actual waste there doesn’t mean there aren’t bacteria left behind. Especially if you have a male cat, the spray of their urine can be further up on the globe missing the litter and avoiding the removal of the urine after your cat exits.

It is also important to remember that you need to clean your entire Litter Robot, not just the globe your cat enters to go to the bathroom. The bacteria can quickly spread, making it important that you are thorough and don’t leave any spots for the bacteria to thrive. It is recommended that you clean your litter robot at least once a month if you have one cat, but every two weeks if you have more than one cat using the device.

You can always clean it more frequently if you prefer to help limit bacteria growth and prevent smells. There are plenty of videos available to show you just how you should tackle cleaning your Litter Robot.

Additionally, if you own two or three cats, then you really need to wash your LR every 2 weeks. Also, if you have a cat that just likes to urinate horizontally and make a mess, you need to clean more often. It’s unpleasant but much required! If you don’t clean it often enough, the bacteria will become embedded into your unit, becoming excessively smelly. The odor will be extremely hard to get rid of then.

You Are Using the Wrong Products

When cleaning your Litter Robot, it is important to use the right products to do it. You need to use a soft detergent, preferably with antibacterial agents in it, and a brush to wash the globe section. You then need to rinse and dry the globe and then allow the waste drawer to sit submerged in water with a few drops of chlorine.

There are other ways to clean the litter robot, but this is by far the most preferable. You can also use baking soda in the litter to eliminate odors, but it isn’t recommended that you use scented kitty litter. Instead, use a small bag of Zeolite under the waste drawer liner, or use scented trash bags to line the waste tray. Lavender is a good option to mask the odor, while not being overbearing.

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Seals Are Worn Out

Around the base of the unit are sealed where the globe section sits on your litter robot. These seals are used to help prevent the smell of your cat’s waste from exiting the device when being transitioned from the globe to the waste drawer. After time, these seals and their sealing properties may become weaker, making it necessary to restore them to better control the smell. Not replacing the seal strips for a long time can be a big mistake.

Not Changing the Carbon Filter Often

While the Litter Robot will work without a filter, the performance will be lacking compared to with a filter. This is because the filters used absorb the odors from your cat’s waste and prevent it from spreading out into your home. You should be changing the filter at least four times a year, but may need to do it more frequently if you have more cats. Payment

Your Cat Isn’t Getting the Right Diet

If you have ruled out all the following steps, you may need to look at your cat rather than the machine. If your cat is producing very strong-smelling urine or excrement that is not being controlled by the device or following the steps to care for your litter robot, it can be related to your cat’s diet or a health issue. Consider whether the scent has gotten worse recently and if there have been any changes in diet or health. It could be a sign that their digestive system is not agreeing with their food, or that they may not be drinking enough water.

Dehydration can cause urine to stink far more than usual, so it is important to make sure they have water to drink all the time and potentially, upgrade to a water fountain to make water drinking more enjoyable for them. If they are still having issues with extra smelly excretions, you should take them to a vet to make sure there aren’t any other health issues going on.

The Litter Robot Filter

lr3 carbon filters

To make sure that you are getting the most out of your litter robot, you need to use the right filter. Litter Robot’s carbon filters are designed to fit perfectly in the machine and absorb more odor than other filters on the market.

Each carbon filter will last you three months before needing to be replaced. But you can change it more frequently if you would like your filter to absorb the litter scent as well as the scent of your cat’s urine and feces.

Obviously, I would say that Litter Robot carbon filters are specifically designed to be used with your LR. So it’s really a no-brainer that it performs the best! Litter Robot’s carbon filters.


The convenience of a Litter Robot can seem too good to be true. But without proper cleaning and maintenance, you can end up right back where you started. With the help of a thorough cleaning and a high-quality filter, you may just be able to forget your home has a litter box in it most of the time.

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