Odor Control/Heating oil spill
My oil heater sprang a leak and dumped about ten gallons of heating oil in my basement. The leak was repaired and we soaked up the mess with speedi-dri. I shoveled out the wet speedi-dri and replaced it with dry cat litter. But the smell of oil is still there when we run the furnace and it is so bad it gives my wife a headache. Is there anything I can do to eliminate the oil smell and toxic symptomms?
Yes there is.
There is a product called TSP which stands for Tri Sodium Phosphate. It is the best detergent I have ever found for breaking down oil of just about any type. It is generally available in the paint department of the big box hardware stores but you have to be careful NOT to get the TSP Substitute. TSP powder is what you are looking for.
Mix 1 cup of TSP with 1 gallon of hot tap water and stir it with a paint stick (not your hand) till it is all dissolved. Pour enough on the floor to cover the entire oil spot and brush it with a straw broom or a stiff scrub brush. Use rubber gloves to protect your hands!!!!!
After a minute or 2 vacuum up the spend TSP with a water tolerant shop vac. If you have more TSP water left repeat the step 1 and 2.
Flood the wet area with water and vacuum it up immediately several times.
Let the floor dry completely (about 24 hours or so)
Inspect the floor to see how much oil residue is left.
If the oil is not mostly gone, you probably want to repeat steps 1 - 4 one more time and check again.
If the oil is mostly gone, most of the odor will be gone as well.
If the odor is still too strong, you will need a 16 ounce bottle of OdorXit Concentrate odor eliminator off the web, a 12 or 16 ounce bottle of Hoover standard carpet cleaner liquid from your grocery store. Mix 4 ounces of Concentrate with 8 ounces of Hoover carpet cleaner and 1 gallon of water. Pour it on the stain and make sure the area stays wet for at least 10 to 20 minutes re wetting areas that the solution soaks in. Use all the mixture that you make because it will not be effective after 24 hours.
Sometime, a second treatment will be necessary but not always.