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Topic: Getting rid of old camper smell?

Posted By: stepdad on 11/18/07 12:16pm

Hi good folks,
I just bought an old camper to stay high and dry. Got tired of tent camping. Does anybody have ideas on getting rid of old camper smell? It's not a terrible smell, just a way to freshen it up inside.

~Thanks, John (stepdad)


Posted By: Big Bruce on 11/18/07 12:37pm

You could put a few small pieces of fresh cut cedar wood in the cabinets and drawers. You might also wash down everything you can with vinegar and water.


Big Bruce
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Posted By: Spott on 11/18/07 12:43pm

Fabreeze seems to help a lot and leave the windows open as much as possible unless theres too much moisture in the air.


Me - Kim - Spot
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Posted By: Beddows on 11/18/07 12:46pm

That old smell, might in fact be mold. Are you sure it has not leaked?


Posted By: stepdad on 11/18/07 12:53pm

It could be mold smell. I'm sure there has been a leak or two over the years.

~John


Posted By: tom_kat on 11/18/07 01:01pm

I would wash down the inside might be cigarette smoke smell as well as mildew,you can always refinish the wood with polyurethane or shellac if cleaning doesnt work and seal in the smell,painting the walls might help to update it if you want,the fabric and cushions hold the smell pretty good, spray them with something like fabreese if they cant be cleaned or washed,fabric dryer sheets might help spread around,as well as some cedar wood blocks.if it has carpet shampoo it real well ,good luck.


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Posted By: sljkansas on 11/18/07 01:17pm

Take some new coffee grounds and place them on several plates in side the camper, close it up for a day or two. Since you are in WA. a little heat may help. This will take most any odor out.


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Posted By: trapperdick on 11/18/07 02:04pm

Pledge or lemon oil all of the wood paneling should freshing it up a bit....TD


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Posted By: stepdad on 11/18/07 03:03pm

Thanks folks....I appreciate all your ideas. Since I brought it home it's felt cold and damp but since I put an electric heater in it has felt ALOT better. It looks like this cheap/old camper will do just fine for a couple of days in remote areas.

~Thanks again, John


Posted By: Matthew_B on 11/18/07 03:34pm

I picked up a dehumidifier I found cheap on clearance. It makes a HUGE difference in keeping the camper dry inside, which in turn keeps it smelling fresh. We store clothes, linens, etc. inside so we can go quicker. The dehumidifier helps them too.

Make sure that the door to the fridge is propped open if the fridge isn't left on to prevent mold and stink there.






Posted By: tcwizkid on 11/18/07 07:00pm

It's an old timers method of removing that musty smell that you get in a camper that hasn't been used in awhile. Put 5 or 6 moth balls, not flakes in places you wont notice them. in a couple of days it'll make all the musties go away. Then you just add the new smell you prefer. And no cracks about moth balls and how did I get my big nose between their little legs.


Posted By: WA1RI on 11/18/07 08:05pm

I was just wondering who held the wings back for you.

Vanilla in a bowl works good too.

* This post was edited 11/18/07 08:18pm by WA1RI *


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Posted By: Ron & Shirley on 11/18/07 09:22pm

I have heard of boat owners putting a plastic bucket of charcoal in their boats in the winter to keep mold and mildew out. It would be worth a try.

Shirley


Ron & Shirley
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Posted By: Reddog1 on 11/18/07 09:30pm

Use a 50/50 mix of white vinegar and water. Wipe down all surfaces (I use a sponge). Put about a 1/2-inch of vinegar in the sink, and leave it a few days.


Wayne


Posted By: INSAYN on 11/18/07 10:31pm

Pick up a few Carmel Apple scented candles and place in areas that the sun can hit them (just to warm them). I swear they make the camper smell like a new camper does.


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Posted By: smkettner on 11/18/07 10:46pm

Rent an ozone generator for a week.


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Posted By: trails2004 on 11/18/07 11:30pm

stepdad wrote:

.... Does anybody have ideas on getting rid of old camper smell? It's not a terrible smell....


I told my wife I would take an occasional bath while camping- and I'm not that old!


Sorry could not resist! You have some really great suggestions here!


Posted By: JoeChiOhki on 11/19/07 12:12am

Ammonia + Pinesol + Hotwater and a sponge, replace solution as it dirties. Wash every surface in the camper, including inside cabinets.


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Posted By: Jesse-James on 11/19/07 05:35am

Ron & Shirley wrote:

I have heard of boat owners putting a plastic bucket of charcoal in their boats in the winter to keep mold and mildew out. It would be worth a try.

Shirley


Charcoal works well, I kept it in my pop-up every winter and the old camper smell did not come back.


Posted By: AlandJean on 11/21/07 09:17am

Regarding charcoal, is there any difference between "activated" charcoal and the briquettes you buy for grilling?


Posted By: jgorm on 11/21/07 09:52am

smkettner wrote:

Rent an ozone generator for a week.

Ozone will kill any smell for sure. Its like molecular scissors and it cuts up smelly molecules. They use them on large trash compactors to kill all of the smell. Dont breath the stuff, but it breaks down in seconds when exposed to sunlight so there are no residuals. Freebreeze (sp?) is what i use.


'97 C3500 4 door dually with big heavy camper The Camper My Ford EFI Tuning Website



Posted By: RickW on 11/21/07 04:48pm

AlandJean wrote:

Regarding charcoal, is there any difference between "activated" charcoal and the briquettes you buy for grilling?


Activated charcoal has been treated (heat, steam, microwave, etc.) to open zillions of pores. It is the size and surface area of these pores that attract and collect the odor molecules, which are larger than the "air" molecules. Briquettes are not activated, and have much less capacity to adsorb odor molecules.


Rick
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Posted By: JoeChiOhki on 11/21/07 08:43pm

So, basically, to activate some charcoal (In theory, not practicality), one could take a bag of briquettes, a large barbacue grate, a big canning pot of water and a fire, heat the water with the grill over the top of the pot with the charcoal spread out on it?


Posted By: trails2004 on 11/21/07 09:04pm

jgorm wrote:

smkettner wrote:

Rent an ozone generator for a week.

Ozone will kill any smell for sure. Its like molecular scissors and it cuts up smelly molecules. They use them on large trash compactors to kill all of the smell. Dont breath the stuff, but it breaks down in seconds when exposed to sunlight so there are no residuals. Freebreeze (sp?) is what i use.


I think smkettner was speaking in jest or perhaps not in literal context...The can says Febreze..


Posted By: smkettner on 11/21/07 09:51pm

trails2004 wrote:

jgorm wrote:

smkettner wrote:

Rent an ozone generator for a week.

Ozone will kill any smell for sure. Its like molecular scissors and it cuts up smelly molecules. They use them on large trash compactors to kill all of the smell. Dont breath the stuff, but it breaks down in seconds when exposed to sunlight so there are no residuals. Freebreeze (sp?) is what i use.


I think smkettner was speaking in jest or perhaps not in literal context...The can says Febreze..


I was serious and it works. The hazmat crew that needed to clean up a decomp (person dead for a week+) in one of my apartments used an ozone generator to get rid of the putrid smell that persisted after everything was professionally removed, washed, cleaned, repainted, recarpeted etc.

This one looks smaller but may do the job: Ozone generator rental


Posted By: AlandJean on 11/22/07 05:51am

RickW wrote:

AlandJean wrote:

Regarding charcoal, is there any difference between "activated" charcoal and the briquettes you buy for grilling?


Activated charcoal has been treated (heat, steam, microwave, etc.) to open zillions of pores. It is the size and surface area of these pores that attract and collect the odor molecules, which are larger than the "air" molecules. Briquettes are not activated, and have much less capacity to adsorb odor molecules.




So.....has anyone used charcoal briquettes to remove cigarette smell from their camper?


Posted By: RickW on 11/22/07 01:53pm

JoeChiOhki wrote:

So, basically, to activate some charcoal (In theory, not practicality), one could take a bag of briquettes, a large barbacue grate, a big canning pot of water and a fire, heat the water with the grill over the top of the pot with the charcoal spread out on it?


Joe,
Briquettes are wood charcoal that is compressed to make it denser so it will burn slower and longer (good for BBQ). It also may have a binder (glue)added to hold everything together. This "compression" destroys the open porous nature of the carbon. Don't start with briquettes.

In theory, you can make your own the ol' fashion way by burning wood in a kiln (low oxygen), then maybe put the charcoal in your pressure cooker with some water. You could (theoretically) also put the charcoal in a microwave oven. Don't do this at home! It will arc and burn up your oven.

The stuff is only $2-$3 per pound in bulk.
nuff said.


Posted By: AlandJean on 11/23/07 04:53am

Hi RickW - Could you please share where you can buy activated charcoal for $2 -$3 in bulk? I've been all over the internet and can't find any that cheap. Of course, with dial-up, it takes forever. Thanks.


Posted By: RickW on 11/23/07 03:28pm

AlandJean wrote:

Hi RickW - Could you please share where you can buy activated charcoal for $2 -$3 in bulk? I've been all over the internet and can't find any that cheap. Of course, with dial-up, it takes forever. Thanks.


Hi,
try water filter suppliers. The following is an example of the first one on google I found with a price: (not an endorsement)

www.apswater.com

Activated Carbon, Bituminous Coal (12x40)
Catalog # ACARB-1240BC-50
0.50 ft3, (UPS Packaging)
Weight : 21 lbs.
Our Price
$54.11
Free UPS Shipping*
Retail Price
$73.64

Good Luck,


Posted By: pawatt on 11/21/07 10:01pm

Fabreeze


pawatt


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