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My condo apartment smells of chemicals like paint. Answered

I am living in a condo (apartment Building, 2nd Floor). For the last 5 days my house smells of chemicals like paint or something very close to the paint . In the living room we have small office area with computer and printer where smells very strong. Also this smell is in the kitchen, in the bedroom, all over the apartment. I am the only one that can smell it. It is not paint. The refrigerator works ok, the stove is electric and the furnace is turned off.  The Consumers checked for gas, but there was non. Who should I call in order to come and detect where  this smell is coming from? 

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UghLife
UghLife

7 months ago

I have a very similar but way worse case. You see I’m 15 and looked up as much as I could for 6 whole days straight everyday. I prayed. Cried. And the smell isn’t gone. The smell smells like a highly cancerous toxic chemical. The neighbor says it smells like painting. But I don’t believe people would be living fine like wine with that smell. The management guy came he smelled something oily. So did someone else. I can’t call the health department since it’s close due to coronavirus. And can’t call the fire department because the super will kick us out. Ugh I don’t care where I live. This smell is so deadly it gets stuck to my clothes.

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letterstoghosts
letterstoghosts

Reply 5 months ago

You say that there isn’t any AC where you are... could it be a refrigerant leak from your refrigerator? Maybe some old potatoes or food as others have suggested? Do you still have this problem?

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ddbarton
ddbarton

Reply 7 months ago

I hope you’ve already found the source, but we seem to have a paint like smell all of the sudden in our home too. I did some research and, though I am not sure this is the source for us, it could be a freon leak. Do you have an AC? If so maybe that could be the source. Hope you find the source soon if you haven’t already!

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letterstoghosts
letterstoghosts

Reply 5 months ago

Yes my window AC had this problem! This comment is quite helpful. Someone else may have this issue in the future too.

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UghLife
UghLife

Reply 7 months ago

Thanks for your concern. I really appreciate you responding 😊☺️ But sadly no.. The apartment I’m living right now doesn’t have proper windows(meaning we don’t get fresh air) so it could just be that I guess.

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Nio32
Nio32

Reply 5 months ago

Is it coming from the coating on the outside of your kitchen sink? I suspect mine to be offgasing. Worse and it warms up....

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letterstoghosts
letterstoghosts

5 months ago

About a month ago, I was drifting in and out of a light sleep until I woke right up at 2am to a strong gasoline smell. It was all over my house. It smelled like paint thinner or paint to me, so I thought the neighbours had been painting and I could smell it through the walls. However, doubtful of this theory, I knew something was wrong. I called my mom and she too could smell this gasoline or paint like smell everywhere. It didn’t take long to realize the smell was the strongest in my room so I knew it was my window AC. After taking down the window AC and opening the windows, the smell dissipated and didn’t return. I highly suspect it was a Freon (refrigerant) gas leak. I only had my window AC for a little over a month. Some of them are just cheaply made. I’ve also heard of window ACs that emit this smell and have a leak when they’re old. I had trouble sleeping and PTSD for a while after, terrified it would happen again. What an awful experience. I don’t really trust window ACs anymore.


TLDR ; In my personal experience this smell was caused by my window AC, most likely because of a Freon gas leak.

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lanylatina
lanylatina

1 year ago

Wow im having the same problem at my new home. Just moved in two months ago I live over a mechanic's and there's a smell similar to paint thinner I am now having symptoms of headaches nausea dizziness and my Airways are hurting so now I'm sitting in the emergency room after not being able to go to work for 2 days

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letterstoghosts
letterstoghosts

Reply 5 months ago

Do you have window acs or air conditioning?

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Ricky Liu
Ricky Liu

Reply 1 year ago

I had exactly the same problem with you many years ago and after living in that apartment for years I was diagnosed with leukemia. The doctor didn't say it directly related to the apartment but pollution is definitely one of the key causes.

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UghLife
UghLife

Reply 7 months ago

My house also had that toxic chemical smell, on top of that it doesn’t have windows 💀 and when I went to my grandmas house I noticed I had a skin cancer symptom,

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ani.shoe
ani.shoe

6 months ago

I just wanted to say thank YOU to the person who said it was their oranges. I found a bag of POTATOES and they were responsible for the horrible paint thinner like smell. The potatoes ended up leaking so I had to dispose immediately. I honestly don't know why the potatoes smelled so bad - other than the fact that they had gone wayy bad.

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caitlinsdad
caitlinsdad

5 years ago

Have you checked the inside of your computer and are your using a laser/toner based printer? Those devices do heat up and something inside could be melting or burning off. Other than that, is this the first time you've noticed the smell or is it seasonal? Maybe mold or has there been recent humid conditions/water rain damage? Any cleaning done with new chemicals like rug cleaning? Does the smell persist after you air out the house with open windows and doors? Any sign of rodents/animals that have entered the walls - mice/bats?

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Aladana
Aladana

Reply 5 years ago

I was thinking about the computer. I have a small office in the living room, and I turned off everything, but the smell was still there. Last Wednesday appeared for the firs time, and we have the balcony's door open 8-10 hours a day, but still the smell is there. This week-end I will take the computer to a professional person to ck it out. And is not that kind of smell from animals...it is toxic rather the nasty

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UghLife
UghLife

Reply 7 months ago

Did you find a solution? I’m 15. My mother and landlord or whatever says that if I call the fire department we are out. How did you solve it? Please respond thank you

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Quedra
Quedra

5 years ago

I have been experiencing the same problem for days. Did you find any solution? Please write back, thanks in advance.

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UghLife
UghLife

Reply 7 months ago

Did you find a solution? I’m 15. My mother and landlord or whatever says that if I call the fire department we are out. How did you solve it? Please respond thank you

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ChristinaM155
ChristinaM155

2 years ago

So I'm having the same problem with the smell. It smells like paint thinner and yes running the A/C unit makes it worse. I can barely breathe in here. It's so bad I woke me out of my sleep. At first I thought it was the maintenance man painting next door cause they've been working on the other half of the house, but it's now 2 almost 3 am and it's super strong. I've searched the whole house and found nothing. It's stronger in the basement. It's like breathing in poison smh.

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UghLife
UghLife

Reply 7 months ago

Hi did you get to the bottom of this? I’m 15 and I live in one of the rooms in the basement of my aprtment. I started smelling it like 7 months ago and it comes back worse and worse. Now the smell generates from my room and yes it smells like poison. Did you get rid of it? I called management and they one did smell something but was useless. My mom sadly doesn’t want to do anything about it, I can’t call the fire department or they kick us out, what did you do? Please respond

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debby30725
debby30725

1 year ago

Hi there I know this post is years old but did you ever get to the bottom of it as I have the same issue...wetpaint with menthol smell. Would love to hear from you.

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RichT29
RichT29

Reply 1 year ago

I had this problem, the smell was in the bathroom where my bioler is, it turned out to be a gas leak, the boiler was condemned and had to be replaced, Don't ignore this problem

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Chatty Kat 53
Chatty Kat 53

2 years ago

I'm not sure if anyone has ever figured this out, but we just had this happen today. Freaked us out really cuz well... obvious reasons.

We checked the stove, the heat vent, the spray paint can I'd just bought. Nothing. But the smell kept assaulting our olfactory senses off n on until I asked about the can of Scotchgard on the table too. He said it hadn't even been opened yet.

He picked it up and it was leaking all over! Nail polish remover was a sudden thought too. What a horrible stench. BUT, it's all cleaned up now. We finally shut the kitchen window window.....it's only 20 some degrees. :D

Hope everyone has found the source & the solution. Merry Christmas!

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CharlotteM71
CharlotteM71

2 years ago

I'm still having the same problem Turpin tight like chemical smells are there taking my breast something serious if someone figure out what that is could you please let me know is it dangerous

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LindaD219
LindaD219

2 years ago

Since last week been smelling chemicals in my apt me on bottom like paint products or crafting chemicals. Very strong at 3am in my bathroom when I went to bathroom. Elderly man upstairs kitchen over my bathroom. His kitchen is also over my bedroom. He is in his kitchen at all times of the night. He knows we go to bed at 10 but he starts making noise. He uses a walker and Cain. Drops Cain instead leaning against something. Yes I told land of noise. But now it's renewal time for us. And now I'm smelling chemical's. I'm homeb24/7 so I smell day and night. I got where I got to open windows soon as we wake up. So I go tell office manager which is landlord daughter. I asked her if new people moved in upstairs and if anyone paints or makes thing's..... She said we don't have a meth lab here. (I didn't say y'all did I wanted to say). She said a new woman moved into one of them.... She never said anything about the 2 guy's next to the elderly man. Then just moved in last month also. Funny how they move in an I start smelling an I been here 5yrs.

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Downunder35m
Downunder35m

5 years ago

Might be chemical lab (legal or illegal) in the basement?
If it is not coming from the outside I would look out for chemical smells or constant fan noise from surrounding apartments and the basement.
In any case the landlord should recitfy the source of smell if he can confirm it in your apartment.
You don't have a leaking bottle of nailpolish remover forgotten somewhere?

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Kiteman
Kiteman

Reply 5 years ago

A drug lab in the building was my first thought, based purely on a UK medical drama - woman kept complaining about the "smell of paint" from downstairs, collapsed, turned out she was breathing the fumes of a drug factory.

If the smell doesn't turn out to be of your own making (as DU says, check for spills, also very elderly oranges have a chemical/paint sort of smell), then you're going to have to do the rounds of your neighbours in the building, check with them (hey, maybe downstairs really are decorating!), and if that doesn't cure it you'll have to get the landlord to find and fix the smell.

If you suspect illicit activities in an apartment, my recommendation is to make an anonymous call to the authorities, to prevent things coming back at you from suppliers/customers.

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BudF1
BudF1

Reply 2 years ago

I know this is from 3 years ago, but I was having the exact same problem. I spent at least 3 hours over a couple of days digging through cabinets, checking my washer/dryer and dishwasher, bleached my sinks, etc, but I couldn't find the source. Every time I walked in my house I could smell it, and it was getting stronger; I had very little luck as my nose would quickly adapt to the smell so that I was having a hard time tracking it down by scent alone.

I finally found this board, and lo and behold, the ORANGES suggestion. I had forgotten that I'd purchased them and they were behind the new air-fryer I just purchased. One of them was even blue-green.

THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU! My quest is finally over. :)

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Aladana
Aladana

Reply 5 years ago

No. I checked everything. I was thinking about the lab. Thank you. I will check around

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JosiahH11
JosiahH11

2 years ago

If anyone figures it out please post weve had to abandon our home, the smell was making us all sick

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TamieJP
TamieJP

4 years ago

I just experienced similar. I came home to a strong chemical/paint smell. I have searched and searched. I kept getting fresh air and searching for the odor. I finally was able to find the source. It was an aerosol can that got a tiny puncture. It drained out.


I had to clean and clean the liquid and I hope that I have finished.

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Downunder35m
Downunder35m

5 years ago

Would it be possible to explain the type of smell a bit more?
If we can close in on this it could help to find the cause.

You said it smells similar to paint.
Mineral turps when spilled can stink for weeks but it should be fairly easy to follow the scent to the source.

Acetone or similar solvents will only stay in the air for a short time, which would mean someone in your building uses it on a frequent base if the smell is persistant.

Ether and similar can cause a strong chemical like scent when mixed with other chemicals but also a faint solvent stink with a "sweet" note when pure.

So much for common "legal" chemicals as used for cleaning and painting.
Some paint strippers can be quite stinky too but you would not have an ongoing problem.

A meth lab can cause all sorts of smells depending on the recipe used and how much the cook wants to invest in proper chemicals.
It is unavoidable to get changing levels of concentration, especially if the cook does not care about proper filtration with activated charcoal or does not bother to neutralise the waste products.
If your smell is sometimes stronger or at times really annoying but at other times only faint be careful.
Should you suspect a meth lab visit your friendly cop station and ask nicely for someone to come for a smell test, if possible not in uniform.
The cops know the smell of local meth labs and will be able to tell you if that is the case.
In no case should you go door knocking if you have the above as you get more trouble than you want.
Also inform your landlord again to investigate, maybe on a short call when you can notice a stronger smell.

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Aladana
Aladana

Reply 5 years ago

The smell is like a fresh paint with a light menthol scent. Sometimes is stronger, it is not the same all the time. Consumers and Fire Department didn't find anything. Three guys from FD checked all my condo, and they couldn't smell anything, even I was feeling the smell at that time. I have a very sensitive smell. It is weird for me because I can smell that scent in the car when I am driving. I end up calling a professional environmental company that can check the quality air. In the meantime I am looking for a place to move out. I have two kids and I can't put them in danger. Thank you for your answers.