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Can't get heating oil smell out of my house

LLP Member Posts: 1
I recently had a 50-year-old heating oil tank removed from my backyard. My furnace was converted to gas at least 30 years ago, so it was time that the oil tank was removed. During the removal process there was a strong heating oil smell because of some soil contamination (which is being professionally cleaned up). The air intake for my gas furnace is right over the hole where the oil tank was and the fumes got sucked into the furnace and dispersed throughout my house. It's been a month and the house still reeks despite my having windows and doors open for hours.. Any idea how to get rid of the smell? The smell is obviously in the heating ducts -- how on earth do I clean the odor residue out of them? Also the house has wall-to-wall carpet on the main floor. How do I get the smell out of it????


  • lchmb
    lchmb Member Posts: 2,997
    The intake should have been into the burner cabinet itself not your duct work. If it dispersed that easy I would have the unit checked for leakage in the HX. On the smell...do you have any oil residue in the duct work? I think at this point I would hire a company to come in and clean the duct work and remove the smell...the money would be worth it..
  • Leon82
    Leon82 Member Posts: 684
    Paper products can absorb the oil smell too. I'm not sure what you have stored near there but my parents built a room to protect the garage tank and stored napkins in there.

    When we went to use them they smelled like the heating oil.
  • deadmansghost
    deadmansghost Member Posts: 32
    If the house footings weeping tile, runs into a sump pit inside the house the oil running out of the contaminated soil can enter that sump pit. Or through drain piping and a dry trap will allow the fumes to enter the house. Some things to check. Also as mentioned above have the furnace heat exchanger checked for cracks.
  • Gordy
    Gordy Member Posts: 9,546
    Pinesol does a great job.
  • BillW
    BillW Member Posts: 198
    Oil odors are hard to get rid of. Whoever is cleaning up your decommissioned oil tank should be removing the contaminated soil, and replacing it with clean fill. Oil may have permeated your basement walls or be leaching into your sump pit or into the space between the floating slab and the wall. Any "rainbows" on the water in the sump? There are specialty cleaners that work on the sulphur compounds in the oil that cause the bad smell, you can find them at oil-oriented wholesalers. Follow the directions to the letter, or you will make the problem worse. You may also need the services of a professional clean up company.