|Posted by Winnie Saayman on August 29, 2012 at 11:30 AM|
What causes that awful paint smell? Oil-based paint odours come from evaporation of solvents as the paint dries and because some of these compounds evaporate slowly, the fumes tend to linger in a freshly painted area. Exposure to these paint fumes can cause headaches, dizziness and generally make the room unpleasant to move back into.
Getting rid of nasty paint smells is easy.
Ordinary “old fashioned” and affordable kitchen ingredients are easily available and will help mask and reduce paint odours while you wait for the compounds to evaporate.
Vanilla extract or Peppermint oil.
Add drops of pure vanilla extract or peppermint oil to cotton balls or in small bowls of water and set them out in the room.
If you are a caffeine addict, fresh coffee grounds put out in bowl around the room will mask mild paint odours.
Charcoal can be used to deodorize any powerful chemical odour. Lightly crush whole pieces of wood charcoal into small pieces and leave overnight in containers placed around the room.
Light a candle
Another way to get rid of solvent fumes is to light a candle and let it burn in the room for a few hours. The open flame will burn out the flammable substances in the solvent. Candles still pose a potential fire hazard so place the candle on top of a bowl or a saucer of water to catch any dripping, hot wax and keep young children out of the room while the candle is burning.
A bucket of water
If you don’t want to risk a fire by lighting a candle to burn off the fumes, you can simply place a few buckets of water around the room to absorb the solvent vapours. It is not as efficient as a candle, but is a safer option if you’re painting a room finished with or made with wood.
Cut large onions into quarters and set them out on plates throughout the room. The residual smell of onion will disappear much quicker than the smell of paint would have.
Place bowls of white distilled vinegar around the room to neutralize odours.
Place lemon slices in bowls all over the newly painted room for a day or two and throw them out later to remove any unpleasant paint smells.
Bicarbonate of soda (baking soda)
If the room has a carpet in it, sprinkle bicarbonate of soda liberally all over the carpet and vacuum up in the morning. This is a two in one solution as your carpet will be freshened and deoderised at the same time as your freshly painted room.
Open all doors and windows for as long as possible during the day and night. Putting a fan in the room for this period will also hurry along the process of clearing up any lingering, unpleasant paint smells