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Open Roads Forum  >  Travel Trailers  >  General Q&A

 > Bad smell when running heat

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routeforty

ohio

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Posted: 12/07/20 10:28am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

profdant139 wrote:

You may be able to hook up a "crevice tool" to your shop-vac. Good luck!
that gets the droppings. I did that on mine for the solid droppings, but the odor was coming from, I guessed from the urine. That's why I had to replace the ductwork. The ductwork would be on the inside of your trailer. behind cabinents, refer, bath, etc. Like I said, the hardest part is working in the cramped quarters.


2018 coachmen leprechaun class c

routeforty

ohio

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Posted: 12/07/20 10:46am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Just looked at a cherokee trailer online(pictures). Looks like you have your heating ducts running through the floor, with floor registers. Disregard just about everything I previously said. Probably what I would do in your case is remove the registers and get some type of a flexible wand with some rags(or something similar at the end soaked with clorox) and try to clean it that way. Be very careful about the ductwork as it is very thin, cheap metal(or foil), and tears QUITE easily.

Gdetrailer

PA

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Posted: 12/07/20 01:20pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

mr_andyj wrote:

dead mouse on your plenum.
I really don't know what a plenum is but assume it is the housing enclosing where the flame is, and gets really hot, and if the mouse died on top of it, the mouse gets hot, doesnt burn, but roast and smells. The smell will be blown through the vents.
Is your smell from the vents?
Eventually the smell will burn itself out, like a scented air freshner stick that has expired.
If it is a mouse then you likely have gross mouse droppings and you need to clean it all out. Prepare to take things apart to get to the dropping. Droppings are a health hazard.


"Dust burn" smell wears off after one on cycle.

"Mouse smell" however is a life time issue that will never go away with out replacing the entire ductwork system and possibly the furnace.

While you may be able to sweep out the droppings, it is the urine they spray everywhere is the long term issue.. Add a little moisture or heat and the smell just comes back.. You have to fully eliminate the urine from every surface that could have been possibly sprayed while they lived in there. Sometimes that requires just replacing everything that they touched like the ductwork.

Yes, that sounds "extreme" but it is the truth and what it takes to fix it. Otherwise the smell just keeps coming back.

Have been there, done this.

Op could try perhaps treat it as a "pet odor" and try one of those "pet odor" sprays designed to clean up pet urine messes on the ductwork but I suspect they will have difficult time reaching every sq inch with that spray..

Per HERE do not use ammonia, vinegar, steam as those can increase the odor.. However other websites seem to contradict this..

Although one website mentions using mix of vinegar and baking soda since urine can contain both acid and alkaline substances..

Most seem to agree on trying pet urine/odor removers for dogs and cats might work.

The biggest downside is gaining access to every square inch of ductwork..

midnightsadie

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Posted: 12/07/20 03:38pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

rent a camera and look around. but mice sure sound like the easy way. p.s do you know that propane has a real nasty smell? you could have a leak.

midnightsadie

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Posted: 12/07/20 03:40pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

there also mobil techs a service person that comes to you, most are great guys and have tons of expereince. lot cheaper than taking things apart you don,t have to.

kellem

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Posted: 12/07/20 04:38pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

My brother threw a soaked sponge of simply green down the registers and called it a day.....a bandaid but effective for quite awhile.

blaczero

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Posted: 12/07/20 05:52pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Anyone tried ozone for this? I use it all the time for smells, mold/musty, cigarette, pet odor etc. A lot of car rental companies use it too.

Ozone machine intake should be fresh air, put the output right at the return, and circulate for a couple hours. Obviously, no one should be in the coach during and up to 4 hours after. It's toxic for your lungs until it dissipates.

This is the ozone machine I've used plenty, just hooked up a 4" dryer-vent flex hose to output to direct it where I wanted it. Some hunters even use it to get rid of any biological smells on their clothes.

https://www.amazon.com/Enerzen-Commercial-Industrial-Deodorizer-Sterilizer/dp/B00JAP7388

midnightsadie

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Posted: 12/07/20 06:20pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

had that down to a car worked great.

Gdetrailer

PA

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Posted: 12/07/20 07:32pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

midnightsadie wrote:

rent a camera and look around. but mice sure sound like the easy way. p.s do you know that propane has a real nasty smell? you could have a leak.


Can't see mouse urine without UV light but you sure can smell it and it IS one nasty smell that just does not go away.. Makes the odorant in propane smell like a expensive perfume..

Had the same issue with my first TT, the mice had gotten into the flexible ductwork, made nests in there. Replaced the ductwork with new but STILL would occasionally would smell the mouse urine smell coming from the furnace.. Obviously they must have had a blast inside the furnace..

Any flexible ductwork needs to go, any hard ductwork and furnace might be cleanable with something like pet urine removers.. But there is no guarantee that it will fully remove the smell.

Another potential source of this smell also comes from the fact that some of the furnace heat is sent around your fresh water tank and back into your RV.. Good chance they were there also! You will have to do some detective work to find the duct going to the tank AND the vent that comes back up from the tank.. But worst of all is if they were there, you will most likely have to remove all the insulation around the tank and start from scratch..

A BIG, BIG job and there is no short cut to fixing this, no bandaids, no amount of ozone generators will fix it.. Complete scrubbing or removal of the affected items is most likely going to be required..

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