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      08-19-2016, 01:51 AM   #1
sonic1
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Fix-a-flat blew up in my trunk and the the smell won't come out. *HELP*

Can of fix-a-flat blew up in my trunk and the smell won't come out (even with all the carpeting removed). Somehow the smell is still stuck in the trunk and is strong enough to seep into the cabin. I've tried everything and at the point of selling the car as it smells like paint inside the cabin. Carpet was cleaned using upholstery cleaner, soapy water, steam cleaned, and white vinegar/water. The odor in the carpet went away after airing it out for 5 days in the sun.

The plastic battery tray was removed which means the liquid was exposed to some of the trunk metal. The trunk is completely stripped and have used soapy water, steam cleaner, lysol, paint thinner on all metal surfaces and it just doesn't go away. Aired the car out for days and tied the trunk open while going down the road for 20 miles with seats/windows down to see if strong air circulation would help.

I've come across a few threads where this has happened and people can't seem to get the smell out either. Considered using degreaser but can't imagine it being more effective. Have to drive the car with the windows down and A/C off or I begin to feel nauseous after 10 minutes or so. I was thinking of simply spraying the trunk to seal any liquid that may have been missed or can't be accessed in hopes it'll stop the odor. Sounds crazy but it's ridiculously strong.

Any thoughts on the next steps?

Last edited by sonic1; 08-19-2016 at 02:16 AM.
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      08-19-2016, 06:25 AM   #2
maddmatth
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That sounds terrible, there's a good reason not to buy that stuff!
Maybe there's a blob of the stuff in a crack/hole that you've missed?
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      08-19-2016, 06:33 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sonic1 View Post
Any thoughts on the next steps?
One word: Odoban.

The careless actions of a supermarket bag boy led to a broken bottle of red wine in the trunk of my old 2008 335i, so I know whereof you speak re: odor seeping into the cabin and being impossible to get out despite trying various methods and products. Until I tried Odoban.

It didn't take one application, mind you, and I went through a couple gallons of the stuff, using it at its full concentrated strength rather than diluting it. I saturated all of the carpeting on the bottom and sides of the trunk several times, and also saturated the plastic etc. on the trunk bottom itself, letting puddles sit there overnight. And lo and behold, the pervasive musty stale bread odor of old red wine did go away.

There are various permutations of the product and various scents (I used both the original eucalyptus and then lavender), but they all work the same.
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      08-19-2016, 07:47 AM   #4
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I've had good results with those foggers, I think meguiars makes them? Like $6 at Walmart. And I would leave a few boxes of baking soda in the trunk and back floor. Good luck
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      08-19-2016, 01:53 PM   #5
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I can think of two things: leave the trunk open outside with airflow (like a fan blowing in the trunk) for as long as possible. When you have to close the trunk, put something that is odor absorbent in the trunk. Like baking soda or even charcoal (preferably as a powder). Don't just open a container, you need as much surface area as possible. Get something big and flat and dump the stuff in it and spread it out.
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      08-19-2016, 02:31 PM   #6
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This is what I used to finally get the stink out of a freezer full of fish that lost power (my wife wanted to throw it away, but I refused. I lost ~ 100lbs of grouper, and red snapper, and eight lobster tails - I was not going to lose the freezer too!). This, after days of scrubbing, and bleaching every inch, still left a noticeable stench.

Place a pie pan full of fresh ground coffee, and on top of that, lots of lightly wadded up newspaper that has been lightly dampened with water (spritzed with a spray bottle). Close the trunk, and let it sit.
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      08-19-2016, 03:09 PM   #7
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I spilled some diesel additive in mine a few months ago.

What i did was:

baking soda, rub it into the carpet.
spritz with Simple Green.
Let sit for several hours
Vacuum

That took most of it. After that I:

spritzed carpet with Denatured alcohol. (it dries fast)
let sit a few hours
vacuum again

Then I added a bag of charcoal odor absorbent and left it in there.

This cleaned up the smell almost completely over the period of a weekend.

Worst case, you can have the carpet removed and replaced. Cheaper than selling the car.
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      08-19-2016, 07:05 PM   #8
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how is this possible? how does it just explode on its own? does it have anything to do with heat?

I read somewhere they stropped making fix a flat with butane and propane so this wouldnt happen...
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      08-19-2016, 09:33 PM   #9
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I keep a can in my trunk just in case; may get rid of it now after reading this. I still have Assist if need be.
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Last edited by mxchris727; 08-20-2016 at 02:49 AM.
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      08-20-2016, 02:37 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mxchris727 View Post
I eel a can in my trunk just in case; may get rid of it now after reading this. I still have Assist if need be.
Get the tyre slime/goo, that's not pressurized. And a portable air compressor that plugs into the cig lighter socket, to pump up the tyres - as a bonus you can maintain and adjust your tyre pressures at home or anywhere. They're actually cheap.
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      08-20-2016, 04:29 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maddmatth View Post
Get the tyre slime/goo, that's not pressurized. And a portable air compressor that plugs into the cig lighter socket, to pump up the tyres - as a bonus you can maintain and adjust your tyre pressures at home or anywhere. They're actually cheap.
I keep a tire plug kit in mine...it's not as easy as the cans but it works better and no chance of damaging TPMS sensors.
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      08-20-2016, 12:44 PM   #12
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I also keep a plug kit, a good quality one. Cheap ones are not easy to use.

In addition I have these in the trunk:

- BMW's jack kit
https://www.ecstuning.com/b-genuine-...FYMehgodjzcKqQ
- Portable inflator
- A pair of pliers for pulling out nail/bolt from puncture.
- A rubber mallet to persuade the wheel out in case needed.
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      08-20-2016, 12:50 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Plainview View Post
how is this possible? how does it just explode on its own? does it have anything to do with heat?

I read somewhere they stropped making fix a flat with butane and propane so this wouldnt happen...
When temperature increases, so does pressure in any sealed container. This can happen with any pressurized aerosol especially in 95 degree heat. Never leave any type of aerosol in a car in hot temperatures.
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      08-20-2016, 01:41 PM   #14
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Call manufacturer of product that exploded....they mY have an easy solution for you as they know their product best one would think.
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      08-21-2016, 10:46 AM   #15
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Thanks for the responses so far guys. The manufacturer doesn't answer the phone, however, a post suggested they recommended paint thinner to remove the product.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Needbmwpartzz View Post
Call manufacturer of product that exploded....they mY have an easy solution for you as they know their product best one would think.
GL Op
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      08-21-2016, 03:37 PM   #16
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Just can't help think of the Seinfeld episode...

OP, I think it probably got into all the little holes in the sheet metal below the package shelf (underneath the rear glass). You may have to clean it. If it were my car I'd take all the trunk lining out and cover the floor with plastic, the spay brake clean in all the holds and blow it out with compressed air.

Good luck.
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      08-21-2016, 08:53 PM   #17
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Buy a few boxes of crayons and make it smell like an E46.
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      08-21-2016, 09:12 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mashman View Post
This is what I used to finally get the stink out of a freezer full of fish that lost power (my wife wanted to throw it away, but I refused. I lost ~ 100lbs of grouper, and red snapper, and eight lobster tails - I was not going to lose the freezer too!). This, after days of scrubbing, and bleaching every inch, still left a noticeable stench.

Place a pie pan full of fresh ground coffee, and on top of that, lots of lightly wadded up newspaper that has been lightly dampened with water (spritzed with a spray bottle). Close the trunk, and let it sit.
While it was a lessor odor problem, I also had good results with ground coffee. It's certainly worth a try.

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      08-21-2016, 10:53 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Willsbma View Post
I've had good results with those foggers, I think meguiars makes them? Like $6 at Walmart. And I would leave a few boxes of baking soda in the trunk and back floor. Good luck
Yes they work great I got the smokers smell out with two foggers did one the first week and then the second fogger the next. Worked out great Meguiars new car scent is what I used. Picked it up at Oriley's
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      08-22-2016, 12:39 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sonic1 View Post
Thanks for the responses so far guys. The manufacturer doesn't answer the phone, however, a post suggested they recommended paint thinner to remove the product.
You expect they answer phones on Sunday?!

If manufacturer suggests paint thinner, you might try a visit to a body shop who will put your car into the paint curing room and let it bake for a cycle.
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      08-22-2016, 10:51 AM   #21
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Didn't reach out to them on Sunday of course. Called several times during the week and no dice.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wilt View Post
You expect they answer phones on Sunday?!

If manufacturer suggests paint thinner, you might try a visit to a body shop who will put your car into the paint curing room and let it bake for a cycle.
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      08-26-2016, 09:47 AM   #22
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UPDATE: Ordered an Ozone generator which is known to eliminate cigarette smell, landlords commonly use them rid most odors. Have a good feeling this will technique, going to clean all surfaces thoroughly and give it a shot.
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