Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Positively Toxic Smell!

When I left for work this morning I opened up a new shower curtain liner for the first time. Being a vinyl material I knew it would have a strong odor and was hoping it would do some major airing out/off-gassing while I was gone. However, when I opened it I was blown away with the extremely strong gasoline smell. I mean, strong enough that I started speeding up my morning routine to get out of there as fast as I could.

Tonight, it's the same; it smells exactly as if I was standing next to the unleaded pump filling up my car. I can't imagine using it tomorrow in a hot shower. I am sure my sinuses and my head would be messed up for the day.

This particular product is the Heavyweight Anti-Mildew vinyl shower curtain liner from Target's home collection(#3064 08 0694). The smell is mentioned in all the product reviews on the site. In fact, this one describes it exactly as I would:

"While indeed the weight of this liner is one of the heaviest I have found, it has an AWFUL Odor. Not the typical, gone in an hour "vinyl" shower curtain liner most of us have experienced type odor, but a very strong, petroleum/diesel fuel odor. It gave me a horrible headache, and is so bad that I had to close the door to my bathroom and run the exhaust fan and an air purifier. I even tried washing the liner in the washing machine with a little white vinegar. All that did was instantly rust the "rust proof" grommets, and the smell is only slightly less three days later. It is still all I can smell when in the shower. It really makes the product unusable."

I'm glad I wrote this AND read that review because I just walked over to it and realized I don't even want to touch it because of the smell. Therefore, I'm going to package it back up, wash my hands again, and take it back to the store. I hope they'll let me exchange it for their ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA) PVC-free ones, despite the $6 difference. If they try to give me a hard time, I'll just make them smell it! That smell CAN NOT not be good for your health!


Very Prairie said...

Ack, what a fiasco! I use a polyester fabric liner that works just as well as vinyl but doesn't come with the fumes and is easy to clean. I found mine at my local hardware store (Menards). Target.com has one, but it isn't in store. Good luck!

Anonymous said...

I've bought that exact same shower curtain but have never noticed a gasoline smell. Coincidentally though, I did buy a comforter at Target once but had to return it because of a strong gasoline odor, exactly as you described. I suspect this all has to do with factory or shipping conditions that we'd probably rather not think about...

Marcy said...

Ugh--that had to be awful. I'm sure they will let you exchange it. Toxic fumes are a big NO DEAL!