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Thread: sweet smell coming off of baseboard heaters

  1. #16
    DIY Junior Member yarrow's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=Raucina;127771]Comparative observations on the growth rates, blood counts, urine examinations, kidney function tests, fertility and general condition of the test and control groups, exhibited no essential differences between them with the exception that the rats in the glycol atmospheres exhibited consistently higher weight gains. Some drying of the skin of the monkeys' faces occurred after several months continuous exposure to a heavy fog of triethylene glycol. However, when the vapor concentration was maintained just below saturation by means of the glycostat this effect did not occur.


    airborne glycol is considered toxic - check out osha and u.s. dept. of health services (just google airborne glycol respiratory) - even long-term exposure/inhalation of 1-25ppm will cause serious respiratory irritation, 80 ppm will cause "intolerable irritation" according to those sources (also you'll find similar reports on materials safety documents).

    of course, i'm not saying that it is undeniably a glycol leak. i'm only guessing glycol because the smell and the symptoms appear to match up (cat piss odor doesn't cause burning eyes, rash, chest pain - or your cat to throw up) -- and who knows what they put in the system 40-50 years ago?

    another interesting piece of info - the registers are pretty smashed up, from carpet cleaners banging up against them (the covers didn't protect the flanges and pipes, they've got pretty significant dents in them, especially the one in the living room, where the strongest smell comes from).

    i'm still trying to get the mgmt. company to at least test the system - or flush it. even the city can't figure out why they are resisting doing these things, since they've had multiple complaints and both are simple, inexpensive checks.
    Last edited by yarrow; 03-08-2008 at 05:12 PM.

  2. #17

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    Yarrow, what chemos did they have you on? Remission, yes, from treatments. What stage were you? That is good news you are in remission. I am too, for nearly 3 years now!

  3. #18
    Master Plumber Dunbar Plumbing's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by yarrow View Post
    (cat piss odor doesn't cause burning eyes, rash, chest pain)

    I might be taking your words out of context, but I totally disagree with that statement.



    As a "former" union service plumber working in rough areas of urban areas in cincinnati ohio, we would randomly enter homes that the concentration of cat urine was so high (ammonia levels) that you're eyes would burn red within 15 minutes of being in there.

    Talk about people that have no clue about healthy living, it was deplorable what I've seen as an urban plumber. I don't subject myself to that anymore, too disturbing.


    Anyway, when I'd write "Not fit for human life" on the bill, that indirectly changed lives for animals, adults and children in that specific habitation.


    I only did it 3 times as my tour as a plumber over there, all 3 times deserved the health department coming in and removing all occupants.

    1 of those 3 houses they tore down 6 months later. 321 Forbus Avenue off Queen City avenue on the west side....

    sounds like something out of a horror movie which it was. DANGER


    My mother seemed to think that injuries to the breast tissue is relevant to breast cancer. There was a correlation gathering on this matter but no statistical data to back it up.


    Patrick Swayze is someone I would never think would have only weeks to live *5* but I hope they are wrong. The facts are a 4% survival rate when you're in your late 70's and 80's, he's gotten it in his 50's.

    I'm thinking it's all that exposure to "dirty" dancing is what caused it. Shame.
    Read what the end of this sentence means.

  4. #19

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    Cat urine will sting the eyes and smell like ammonia is right. Plus, my mother had breast cancer and had an injury to the chest when she was a young girl. She was kicked in the chest by a horse. She also thought it was the cause. I don't know. Odd you should say that. Hmm. I have been beating the odds. I am so proud of that I could write in the skies. I put a holiday on the calendar in my fair city in 2001. It is, Remission Week. I worked with the mayor and we wrote up a proclamation. Remission Week is celebrated from June 24-June 30. My proclamation,

    WHEREAS, every day people from all over the world and all walks of life face life-threatening disease and;
    WHEREAS, after undergoing very difficult treatments in order to save their lives and;
    WHEREAS, with great medical advancements many people experience a remission in their illness and;
    WHEREAS, we, as a people, need to recognize the importance of a remission to a seriously ill person.

    Then, the Mayor declared with his signature and seal:

    NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that I as Mayor do hereby declare the week of June24 through June 30 to be " Remission Week" recognizing the triumph of seriously ill patients over their life-threatening illnesses.

    Our supermarkets give away balloons and we have some other events.

    Now, I am working on legislating a new law.
    Last edited by Cookie; 03-08-2008 at 06:06 PM.

  5. #20
    DIY Junior Member yarrow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cookie View Post
    Yarrow, what chemos did they have you on? Remission, yes, from treatments. What stage were you? That is good news you are in remission. I am too, for nearly 3 years now!
    congratulations on the 3 years! wonderful news.

    no chemos or surgery in my case - i refused treatment - they called it stage I hodgkins, but i suspect it was environmental issues masquerading as hodgkins. i was able to get rid of the symptoms on my own by figuring out the cause/removing myself from the problem, the symptoms totally cleared up (took several months to totally clear up the problem). they really didn't have much choice other than to say it went into remission.

    the cause in that case was an older house w/a chimney that was out of commission that was backdrafting into our apartment - tested positive for mold the closer you got to the chimney, and who knows what else was blowing in - lots of bad juju inside chimneys (the landlord refused to put a chimney cap on it or even get it cleaned). i noticed that on windy days, we (my husband and myself) would wake up feeling like crap - leg cramps, extreme ankle and foot pain, edema, headaches, stomach problems, diarrhea - also, acid reflux and eye infections for him (that nobody could cure or explain).

    i was able to semi-control the problem by blocking the unused fireplace opening with plastic. he signed on for unnecessary circulation/leg surgery when he got to where he couldn't walk more than a few blocks (the surgery did absolutely nothing to fix the problem). i got the hodgkins stage I diagnosis. of course, both cats had started throwing up not long after we'd moved into the place and continued throwing up "hair balls" the entire year we were there - now we know what that means - it means you've got a sick apt/house and you better figure it out/fix it - or leave.

    bottom line - it took us awhile to figure out what was going on (it was just electric baseboard heat, no gas in building, so i knew it wasn't CO). we finally identified the problem as an uncapped chimney, but the landlord refused to fix it (again, a very simple, inexpensive fix), so we moved. cats stopped throwing up and our symptoms went away (cecil's walking problems cleared up within a few weeks). i also did xi gong to help remove lymph/edema buildup, and drank a gallon of green tea/day to help w/detox. took about 5-6 months to totally clear up the lungs/lymph glands, get my energy back to normal state and get the clear pet scans/clean bill of health from my doc.

    no chemo. no radiation. no surgery. no meds. the whole experience has made an avid believer out of my husband (who's now back to hiking/biking with the best of them). you can believe he's not going to be signing up for any surgeries in the future without first checking out his environment.

    i'm not saying all diagnoses are wrong, or that i wouldn't have signed up for treatment if i couldn't identify an environmental trigger. it's just that there are a lot of mis-diagnoses, and environment "bumps in the night" that present as other things when you go to the doc. it's just good to do your own detective work in this regard.

    a friend of mine was on 4 different meds - anti-depressants, ADD, sleep meds and i can't remember the 4th, before i helped her identify that her family's actual problems were related to CO leaks from ducting that had moved apart from years of the house settling. the simple test of turning off her gas appliances for a couple of days was all it took to convince her (then of course, she had to pay someone to find the CO leaks, which led to replacement of the ducting - about 3K, but she says it's a lot cheaper than all the doctor visits and medications she'd been through since buying the house a few years back).

    environmental doctors are trained to look for this stuff, some are better than others i understand - but most docs are not trained in this regard - only to diagnose/treat the symptoms they see.
    Last edited by yarrow; 03-09-2008 at 07:58 PM.

  6. #21
    DIY Junior Member yarrow's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=RUGGED;128062]I might be taking your words out of context, but I totally disagree with that statement.

    i agree with what you're saying. what i meant to say is that cat piss/ammonia is a very distinct odor - and it is not a sweet smell by any means.

    the apartment is very clean/no odors. i have cleaned the registers so that they look like new (well, except for all the dings and bashed in flanges). they do not smell whatsoever (if there was cat urine - or territorial markings - there, you'd smell it).

  7. #22

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    Actually, houses can make you sick. Three years ago, I came down with pneumonia. I got it twice. We couldn't figure it out. We, meaning the doctors and I. Then, I found my bath was loaded with mold inside the walls and under the floor. So, here is me~~with my love for long soaks in the tub breathing it in. I had the mold tested and found it to be the kind of mold/germ whatever, you want to call it, which can and will cause the kind of pnuemonia I had. Now~~with air scrubbers, machines to dry it up, walls removed, floor removed, the entire bath removed and replaced, Racina, I have been not only cancer free so far and I thank God for, but, also, pneumonia free. Now, I can do the math. I can't say getting rid of the mold put my cancer in remission but, I can claim getting rid of it, did stop my bouts of pneumonia.

  8. #23
    Master Plumber Dunbar Plumbing's Avatar
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    yarrow,


    I was right then about taking your words out of context then, you was mentioning the difference.

    Quote Originally Posted by Raucina View Post
    Also get a few dozen chickens to run free - those eggs are far better than any gallonage of green tea.

    I've been eating 3 fried eggs every morning on buttered toast now for the past 2 months; got away from McDonald's once and for all. Got sick of spending $6.66 every morning and wasting my fuel waiting in line looking at unattractive female restaurant workers with no chance for proper dental hygiene in their lifetime. Don't smile, grin, please. I gotta be able to eat my biscuit without seeing what looks like a pinto drove through a picket fence.

    The eggs I eat are from a local farmer. The egg whites are so much better than the store bought, cooks up in the frying pan so much better and has a more full taste. I don't even salt or add pepper, they're that good. The ones from the store stating "cage-free" are no different than the el-cheapo grade A large white eggs.

    I switched to brown as well, I've been told the color of the egg has no bearing on flavor or looks.

    I have a full glass of orange juice and one banana. I don't care if fried eggs on buttered toast will kill me.....I've come a long way from McFat's knowing how many years I've employed those low entry workers with my willingness to spend.



    Quote Originally Posted by Cookie View Post
    Actually, houses can make you sick. Three years ago, I came down with pneumonia. I got it twice. We couldn't figure it out. We, meaning the doctors and I. Then, I found my bath was loaded with mold inside the walls and under the floor. So, here is me~~with my love for long soaks in the tub breathing it in. I had the mold tested and found it to be the kind of mold/germ whatever, you want to call it, which can and will cause the kind of pnuemonia I had. Now~~with air scrubbers, machines to dry it up, walls removed, floor removed, the entire bath removed and replaced, Racina, I have been not only cancer free so far and I thank God for, but, also, pneumonia free. Now, I can do the math. I can't say getting rid of the mold put my cancer in remission but, I can claim getting rid of it, did stop my bouts of pneumonia.

    Tis true, houses with non-maintained HVAC systems or plumbing systems in disrepair can be the pathway for the heating/cooling system to circulate what is a bad bad situation of airborn bacteria.

    Pneumonia can be the end-all for those with compromised immune systems.....hear of death all the time for those who do battle with this, had other issues beforehand.
    Last edited by Dunbar Plumbing; 03-09-2008 at 11:15 PM.
    Read what the end of this sentence means.

  9. #24

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    The banana and the OJ is good for you. Now, here is a trick that can make your breakfast even better. Rugged instead of using the butter, use Coconut oil to fry your egg in. And, buy brown organic eggs, they taste the same but, are healthier. I guess you know that. Or use only the whites. Then, cut down to one egg instead of 2 or 3. Also, instead of the white bread, use a whole grain bread. So far as the women I have no advice other than, don't be too picky and remember if you really fall in love with someone you and her can fix any problems. My husband used to always tell me he never had a girlfriend before me, because he had flaming red hair, was too tall and too skinny. And, he was. lol. But, that is what I loved about him. I cook, so, once married he got to a proper weight instead of the 120 pounds on an over 6 feet frame. Also, buy Smart Balance butter instead of any other butter, and Olive Oil is good for you.

    Yeah, I know about Pneumonia. It kills off most of us with immune system problems. But, my homeowners was great and paid for most of the repairs and brought the heavy-duty machines at their expense. They are life-savers. Liberty Mutual folks.

    I don't have air-conditioning, only small portables in my boys rooms, in mine I use only a fan. The mold in my bath came from a roofing problem. ( I had a sneaky leak) It is crazy. But, that is life, it is always interesting.

    Rugged, your breakfast you are eating now, is still far better than Mickey D's. You know, one or 2 changes and it would be a good breakfast. Very important note here: **My friends read this site, lol, and, think I can't cook because I love to eat out, so let's not tell them.
    Last edited by Cookie; 03-10-2008 at 06:17 AM.

  10. #25

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    It is a fact brown eggs are healthier, egg whites are lower in calories and cholesterol, coconut oil tends to increase the metabolism and has so many other benefits it would be easier just for you to do a search. My husband and I raised chickens years ago, and they required a good amount of care. I enjoyed them and was sad when they got a disease and died but, I didn't want anymore. Most of the stuff I do in my life is from a perspective of trying to be healthier. I have a 19 year old cat who is my best buddy. Sometimes, Raucina, you are just as happy as you want to be.

    (these are the only eggs I will buy)
    http://www.organicvalley.coop/faq/eggs/brown-eggs/
    Last edited by Cookie; 03-10-2008 at 11:26 PM.

  11. #26
    Master Plumber Dunbar Plumbing's Avatar
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    yum

    eggs

    I eatem all up!


    For some reason I've had this unknown energy eating these organic homegrown eggs. Makes me want to start a farm and grow my own. oink!

    oh wait that's a pig.

    I don't eat bacon with my eggs, too much work. Skillet sausage is good but it's addictive like goetta. Goetta is a fat man's paradise on a plate. Pound of goetta with 4 scrambled eggs with pancake syrup, who cares if I die, it's worth a bypass to do it!
    Read what the end of this sentence means.

  12. #27

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    Yeah, read about coconut oil. I wouldn't worry so much about its origin like you do on things. So far as tasting difference in eggs, it is very possible. But, I guess maybe, you need to eat better first of all to do so, to notice the difference.

    I hope you never need a by pass Rugged. They are not fun. I am sure, my husband would had loved having the chance but, that is life. He didn't. Honestly, I can't laugh at it yet. I can try...
    do you want me to?

  13. #28
    DIY scratch-pad engineer leejosepho's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cookie View Post
    I hope you never need a by pass Rugged ...
    Grapefruit pectin can help avoid that kind of trouble. It works like a roto-rooter for arteries. I had a heart attack while digging for a few potatoes back in 1999, and today (at 58) I can shovel half-yard loads of limestone or sand without even taking a break. My blockages were cleared via angioplasty, and I keep them that way with the pectin (and *none* of the usual prescriptions).

  14. #29

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    That is really great Lee, I love to hear good news like, I really do. Good information, too.
    Last edited by Cookie; 03-15-2008 at 08:52 PM.

  15. #30
    DIY Junior Member yarrow's Avatar
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    hi guys -- i realized i never came back to give an update, so thought i'd at least drop you a line (ok, well more like 30+ lines). ;-)

    at first the management company to property insisted that there were no additives -- glycol or otherwise -- in the boiler system. after much emailing back and forth and my talking directly with their hvac service, they admitted they did put glycol in the system (non-toxic -- but of course still caustic if it vaporizes out of the pipes/radiators), but they still didn't want to discuss removing it/flushing out the system -- even tho everyone admitted it wasn't necessary since all pipes were in protected heated space.

    i spoke with the city, who also talked with the management company. the city agreed with the thread here -- why put glycol in the system at all? totally unnecessary in this case. they also saw no reason why the management company wouldn't just drain the system and refill with plain water just in case it was the cause of the two tenants' health problems (mine and the rn). but... the city has no jurisdiction in this regard -- if it was co or gas leak or electrical, etc. they can step in, but in this case they can only try to talk to the landlord. the management company still refused to flush the system after admitting that glycol was in the system -- and getting the material specs on vaporized glycol symptoms.

    bottom line, i moved out. when i was packing/loading up, 5 of the 6 other tenants came by to ask why i was moving out. turns out they all have had the same symptoms as the rn and me since they'd moved into the building (excema, bleeding gums, itchy eyes and throat, wheezing, nosebleeds). they kept thinking it was an on-going cold or something. i haven't checked back but hopefully, they were able to lean on the landlords to recognize it is a sick building/environmental issue that needs to be corrected.

    anyway -- no further problems like this before or since moving from the property. all symptoms (cat's and mine) resolved within a couple of days - yay.

    thanks for all of your help/input. it is interesting in how pinhole leaks in a home radiator system is not that different in concept than pinhole leaks/vaporized glycol in vehicle systems.

    bottom line: if you smell a sweet odor coming from a "closed" water heating system -- and you're experiencing respiratory, excema, eye irritation -- doesn't hurt to rule out the possibility of pinhole leaks/vaporized glycol being the culprit. you owe it to yourself to check it out -- before heading off to the doc's office for "allergy" meds or cortisone cream for your "excema". ;-)

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