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Author Topic: Smelly question  (Read 793 times)

seabreeze331

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Smelly question
« on: January 22, 2018, 04:45:10 PM »
A friend just got a used 5th wheel and can not register (keeps getting username error) so I'm going to be a go between. Not the worst thing I've ever been.

So there's a semisweet not offensive odor as you enter the door. It become's almost non noticeable after a few seconds.
The camper has set for three/four years. It was really clean when we got it. We have put a humidifier in it, sprayed micro-ban, fabreeze, washed the walls with pine sol, vented for days but nothing seems to help. Even took all the panels we could off and inspected/cleaned in all the hiding spots. Any idea's?
Durwood  (Dt)
Hail from the North (North Carolina) transplanted to the FL panhandle

SeilerBird

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Re: Smelly question
« Reply #1 on: January 22, 2018, 05:00:42 PM »
Unfortunately old used motorhomes that sit almost always develop a smell. Getting rid of it is tough because it is usually in the carpet.
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John From Detroit

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Re: Smelly question
« Reply #2 on: January 22, 2018, 05:14:10 PM »
Without knowing the odor. The ONly Thing I an suggest is Fabreeze everything.

Wife used that stuff when she was housekeeping for Seniors. Works or so she reports, I've used it too.

They make a carpet cleaner solution that features it as well.
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spencerpj

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Re: Smelly question
« Reply #3 on: January 22, 2018, 05:17:33 PM »
Put a Glad or Renuisit in there.  The solid type that evaporates into the air.  It will evaporate into all fabrics and swell will be gone.

OBX

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Re: Smelly question
« Reply #4 on: January 22, 2018, 05:50:35 PM »
It might be the adhesives or other building materials.

HappyWanderer

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Re: Smelly question
« Reply #5 on: January 22, 2018, 06:02:47 PM »
I would guess RV antifreeze. The water system needs to be flushed and sanitized anyways, so see if bleach makes the odor go away.
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seabreeze331

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Re: Smelly question
« Reply #6 on: January 22, 2018, 06:13:00 PM »
There's one of those automatic air sprays set up but it doesn't help.
Antifreeze is a very interesting thought. The pipes were flushed but only with water. We'll try bleach.
Thanks for the inputs.
Durwood  (Dt)
Hail from the North (North Carolina) transplanted to the FL panhandle

Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: Smelly question
« Reply #7 on: January 22, 2018, 06:26:28 PM »
It's good to hear from you, Durwood!

Lots of possibilities, some of which have already been mentioned. Some molds have aromas like that, and accumulated moisture can release all sorts of smells from adhesives, foam rubber, upholstery, carpets, etc. Sometimes the residual odor from a dead critter is sweet as well. Could be in a duct somewhere, or behind a cabinet or wall. Ditto for some tank chemicals, which tend to have sweet cover-up chemicals added. Even if they are no longer used, a touch of smell can remain in the tanks.  Have the air admittance valves been checked?  One of them may be leaking back just a hint of smell, and that may lack the usual rottenness.
Gary
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GoKota

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Re: Smelly question
« Reply #8 on: January 22, 2018, 06:37:18 PM »
Hey Gary
Lots of things have happened since we talked last. Had to give up the Eagle and Acadia. Was off grid for longer than expected. My neighbor got a 5th wheel and wants me to use it which translate " fix it for me."

If it's something dead, it sure is hid. I even took the spare tire housing down looking for anything. I cleaned the heat duct by suction on one end and air into it. Maybe a tank bleach cleaning will do it.

seabreeze331

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Re: Smelly question
« Reply #9 on: January 23, 2018, 07:21:56 PM »
OK. Got the tank cleaning understood.
How are the "air admittance valves" checked?  Is this the same thing as air breaks (anti-siphon valve)?
Durwood  (Dt)
Hail from the North (North Carolina) transplanted to the FL panhandle

Garyi

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Re: Smelly question
« Reply #10 on: January 23, 2018, 08:47:40 PM »
Smells are very difficult to get rid of. Purchased a used Southwind MH that had a smell when first purchased that smelled like new wood. Mostly in the upper cabinets. As time went on the smell seemed to get worse. No matter what type of spray or odor removal product I tried the odor stayed. When I purchasedthe coach I noticed that the seam sealer was cracked open along the edges of the roof in places. I resealed. My only thought was that water had gotten in the roof area and the smell was the Luann deteriorating. I did get rid of the smell though,,, I traded it off for another Southwind MH and passed the smell on to someone else. Items that had been stored/used in the coach still had the same smell almost a year later. Good luck.

Rene T

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Re: Smelly question
« Reply #11 on: January 23, 2018, 09:16:48 PM »
OK. Got the tank cleaning understood.
How are the "air admittance valves" checked?  Is this the same thing as air breaks (anti-siphon valve)?

You could put a baggy over the valves and tape them real good around the pipe.
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catblaster

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Re: Smelly question
« Reply #12 on: January 24, 2018, 07:00:54 PM »
You could put a baggy over the valves and tape them real good around the pipe.

That how we checked them, if the baggy blow up then it is leaking. It should suck in and collapse when working right but not blow outward. You can leave the baggy on and see if the smell eventually goes away. Another more expensive way is to put a smoke bomb in both of the tanks and look for the smoke. I did that with a halloween smoke generator to check mine and for leaks into the RV from the compartments.
Will and Jane
95 Winnebago Luxor

Triple Slide Jayco

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Re: Smelly question
« Reply #13 on: January 28, 2018, 02:54:14 PM »
Boil vinegar on the stove in a pot, run the a/c or heater as well to circulate the air. It works great.
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SeilerBird

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Re: Smelly question
« Reply #14 on: January 28, 2018, 03:04:38 PM »
That how we checked them, if the baggy blow up then it is leaking. It should suck in and collapse when working right but not blow outward. You can leave the baggy on and see if the smell eventually goes away. Another more expensive way is to put a smoke bomb in both of the tanks and look for the smoke. I did that with a halloween smoke generator to check mine and for leaks into the RV from the compartments.
I was sitting at home one fine day last month and all of the sudden smoke started pouring into the living room. I walked towards the smoke and it was coming from the toilet. So I went outside and looked around, saw nothing suspicious, turned off the water and the smoke remained. So I called the front office and they told me that it was from the maintenance crew who routinely fills the sewer with smoke to look for leaks. My toilet had a broken valve and so the sewer is wide open. I now have a foam football that I keep in the hole in place of the valve until I can afford to get my toilet replaced again.
I would like to apologize to anyone I have not yet offended. Please be patient and I will get to you shortly.
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kdbgoat

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Re: Smelly question
« Reply #15 on: January 29, 2018, 05:38:37 AM »
Tom, just close your black tank valve. That will keep the park system isolated from your black tank. If that valve is leaking, I would suggest getting it replaced too.
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