Which odor control products remove odor at its source, and what products only disguise the smell?
Many odor management products deodorize smelly areas by spraying chemical-based fragrances into the air. However, this will only mask odors and not eliminate them. In fact, these solutions can even cause allergic or asthmatic reactions in those with sensitivities to the chemicals circulating in an indoor environment.
The best way to control an odor is to remove its source. A product that has a good surfactant system can lift the offending soil from the surface. Disinfectants can also kill the microorganisms that are feeding on the waste products. There are also bacteria based products that can be used, but those take some time for the selected bacteria to establish itself and out compete indigenous bacteria
Other chemistries such as hydrogen peroxide products can also help neutralize some of the odors by oxidation.
Air freshener technologies can help mask and disguise the smell. These are temporary fixes to odor problems. Air fresheners may contain odor counteractant chemistry that can bind with the volatile foul smelling components and block them from getting to the olfactory senses. The downside to that is you have to keep spraying them in order to keep up with the output of the offending compounds.
Cleaning is always the preferred method for odor control.