I scored another great CL find yesterday - a large wooden tack trunk with red plexiglass inserts. I was able to remove the top piece of plexiglass (which had the previous owner's name on it), flipped it over and re-installed it. It looks great! Now getting rid of the mildew smell is another story - it was in a storage unit for who knows how long. Any suggestions?
Putting the trunk in a warm, dry place will help. Damp wood keeps smells going longer. We have used ground coffee beans to help get rid of smells in closed places, suitcases, unused car. I bought really cheap coffee, put it in a can, just set it inside and closed up the item. Didn't get everything, but HELPED a lot.
You may want to sand it after the drying, desmelling time. Then put on a sealer and paint the inside to help cover smell and look better.
Congrats on the trunk. I have a couple, they hold TONS of stuff.
See if you can put it in the sun. that, and warm, dry air that is moving, should kill anything organic that likes the dark moist spots and nice surfaces like wood. Put a fan on it when you can keep an eye on it, one of those little clip ons. Air that sucker out for a week.
When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.
Also - place a freshly opened container of baking soda in it when you do have it closed... and maybe wipe down the interior with white vinegar beforehand. That stuff really works to eradicate mold/mildew smell (I use it with baking soda to wash old horse blankets - wonderful!).
Originally Posted by SmartAlex
Give it up. Many of us CoTHers are trapped at a computer all day with no way out, and we hunt in packs. So far it as all been in good fun. You should be thankful for that.
Better than baking soda: carpet fresh. If you don't like the perfumes, get the unscented kind or Arm & Hammer (which is probably just enriched baking soda!). I had an antique steamer trunk at one point and left a box of carpet fresh in it all the time, replacing it once a year or whenever it seemed like it needed it.
Thanks for all the suggestions - I let it sit out in the sun (and wind) yesterday but it's going to rain today so it came back inside. I'll try wiping it out with vinegar and airing again when the sun returns, then try some carpet fresh or one of the other things. Appreciate all your advice.