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TOPIC: Do fumes from carpets linger after removal?

Do fumes from carpets linger after removal? 4 months 1 week ago #1

  • Gabi
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Has anyone got any experience in this: I am worried of going through the expense of taking out the new carpet only to find that the fumes remain in the house?

I had carpet fitted to three bedrooms and the stairs as I was letting the house and now I need to live there myself, which was unexpected. I cannot go in the house without feeling sick.

Please let me know if you have experience with this.
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Do fumes from carpets linger after removal? 4 months 1 week ago #2

  • Maff
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I luckily had carpets that were years old in my home when I was severely affected by MCS Gabi, so no direct experience unfortunately. But...

Without meaning to sound condescending, a few quick questions:
1. Have you thoroughly aired out your house i.e. all windows wide open every day for at least a week or two? The VOCs from the carpet will linger long after it's been removed if not.
2. Has any glue / adhesive used to fit the carpet also been removed? This could be a significant source of VOCs.
3. Have any other changes been made to the house that could have potentially introduced chemical irritants?

Just a few things that immediately come to mind and may possibly help. If I think of anything else I'll post again.

I sincerely hope you get to the bottom of this ASAP. You may want to make use of a carbon filter mask or respirator in the meantime if you don't do so already.
Best wishes.
If you are going through hell, keep going - Winston Churchill
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Do fumes from carpets linger after removal? 4 months 1 week ago #3

  • Gabi
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Hi Maff
So glad to get an answer. The carpets are still down. I spent two hours in the house with a double mask on this morning hovering up sodium bicarbonate which has been down for three days - made no difference. They still stink. The windows have been tilted open upstairs - can't leave them wide open as I am not there. I came to work in tears - I am homeless with a home! I don't know if they used glue - I don't think so. I tugged at the carpets and they feel lose - just held down with grippers.
What you say confirms my fears - even if I rip them all out the smell will linger and with my sensitivity may be I can never live in that house again. I had a friend use highly perfumed towels in a room ONCE - I could never go in that room again without feeling slightly sick. I am phoning round estate agents this afternoon to see if I can find something to rent. Been trying to sell the house for nearly a year and lost so much money so my only option is to let it now and rent somewhere myself...Trouble is I got a dog - he moved in with me in my last flat when his owners got a baby! I left the last flat because of smells from BBQ's smoking dope and chemicals. I wish I could find some people and buy and pre-fab eco house with. Went to see this lovely house in Manchester - it's only 85K - dwelle - beautiful. Have a look on their website. It has built-in air filtration and although it was right by a busy road it had fresh air inside.. I need to know about your cure - I am so sick of this.
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Do fumes from carpets linger after removal? 4 months 1 week ago #4

  • Maff
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Hi Gabi,
I'm so sorry, I didn't mean to increase your anxiety at all! Please don't panic and just take a breath - while wearing your mask, or in a safe place. I am sure your house can be made safe for you so you can avoid the upheaval and expense of re-locating.
I suspect the example you gave involving your friend's heavily-fragranced towels is more complicated than it may have seemed. There could have been hundreds of other VOC sources and triggers for your sensitivities in the building that meant it continued to cause you problems. I know from hard experience that it's very easy to focus on one trigger when that might not necessarily be the only thing going on.
I'm sorry but I have to head out for a few hours now but I wanted to reply once I saw your message just to offer some support. Please stay hopeful and I will reply again later and try to help you work through both short and long-term solutions.
Best, Maff
If you are going through hell, keep going - Winston Churchill
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Do fumes from carpets linger after removal? 4 months 1 week ago #5

  • Gabi
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Dear Maff
Do you have any more ideas re carpet?
I need to do something and cannot think of anything else apart from ripping out the carpet - would just love to know if that may work...
Please let me know about your ideas for a cure.
Does this resonate with you as I believe your route to a cure involved enzymes:

My genotype is 'Teacher' and this is what it says in the profile: 'Teachers' tend to have rather low levels of enzymes coded by the CYP2E1 gene which metabolize many chemicals, including drugs and many low-molecular-weight carcinogens. This enzyme is also of interest because it is stimulated by alcohol and may play a role in liver injury induced by chemicals such as chloroform, vinyl chloride and carbon tetrachloride.

The enzyme is primarily found in the liver, and the level of enzyme varies markedly between individuals. Teachers may well be drawn to alcoholic beverages as a way of increasing this enzyme, as alcoholics have twice as much CYP2E1 activity as compared to nonalcoholics. This may be especially true of Teachers who are also non-secretors.
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Do fumes from carpets linger after removal? 4 months 1 week ago #6

  • JunoCherry
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I laid a piece of cheap carpet on a 3-season porch. It's good carpet but inexpensive from local home improvement store. Room might be 15' x 20'. well brother-in-law got it and laid it. It took several months to stop off-gasing. No glue, just laid on floor. I'm guessing now, but maybe 6 months before the odor dissipated. There is plenty of air circulation to outside due to it being a porch and I could close the door. Your direct question was does the odor go away when remove carpet. Well my bank had carpet laid and when I walked in, I got served right away, otherwise I would have had to leave. I told them it was not safe to work in here all day, Next week I was there, carpet was gone and odor was gone. I am chemically sensitive. I don't know about whether they had glue involved or was that removed, also.
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