Had a old cat with no control, and he decided it was a good idea to pee
down the floor heating vent. Didn't really catch on that this was
going on til the heat came on a couple weeks ago. Yikes, what an odor!
I called one of those duct cleaning outfits - but they seem kinda like
a scam. How are they going to get dried pee out of a duct with a
vacuum and some "sanitizing mist"?
Should I just have the ducts replaced? I did just get out the shop vac
and enzematic cleaner, we'll see if it did any good...
I would keep hitting it with neutralizing solutions, they make stuff
called "Out !" that works well, but it comes (or used to) in two
varieties, one general-purpose and one for cloth, you want the
I've had a couple of calls that resemble this one. In both cases I
suggested replacing the duct. In both cases they declined, saying that
they'd try some cleaners and sanitizers first. Personally, I'd rather
breath cat piss than toxic vapors. My first choice OTOH would be to
remove and then cap off that run, that is, if I couldn't afford to
replace it. Save up the money if you have to, but you'd be doing
yourself a favor by replacing it.
Hrm... do you even LOOK to see what they put in those sanitizers? I doubt
that they'd be much worse than pure ammonia vapour from cat piss!
Heck, Febreeze is supposed to be great for getting out odours and it's made
from corn? Doubt that it would be worse than ammonia.
Except for the fact that it *won't work* on cat piss. Believe me, I have
cats and I have Fabreeze. If you're able to get to it to actually wipe
it clean that's another story. OTOH, if you take it apart to get to it,
then you might as well skip the scrubbing and install a new duct. Just
my two cents :) BTW, unless its a completely sealed duct and bare metal
on the inside, then you're SoL because insulation and porous material
can't be scrubbed and will be destroyed by rinsing ;)
On Sun, 30 Oct 2005 00:29:58 -0500, RP wrote:
Thanks for the advice. I do have partial access, but it's not an easy
job to get those pipes out. Cleaning it yesterday did have SOME affect
(probably 70-80% improvement), but it's not all the way better. The pipes
are the easy round type, lucky me.
So, choose your toxin...
Assuming the pipes are in na open basement ceiling, just remove the
screws and take the pipe down. Take it outdoors and run the garden
hose thru it. Pour some bleach in it, and run a rag or mop down the
pipe, and rinse again with hose. OR, just replace that piece of pipe.
If you can not remove the pipe. use your hand, or a stick with rags on
the end and clean with strong bleach water. If the pipe is horizonal,
the pee would run very far into the pipe. Cats dont pee all that much
liquid. If it's vertical, you may have to hang a brick or other
weight on a long rope, then make a "rag blob" that fits rather tightly
and run that bleach water down on the rag. Work the rope up and down.
Try mixing some antifreeze in his water, or giving him several pieces of
sponges soaked in bacon grease. These should solve the problem.
If this doesn't work, wayfarin will probably solve the problem--just mix it
in his food.
Even I don't always abide by the K.I.S.S. principle!
"My doctor says I have a malformed public-duty gland
and a natural deficiency in moral fiber, and that I am therefore
excused from saving Universes."
Actually the kitty is already dead - he had cancer and died this
summer. He was missing the litter box cause he was old and sick.
This weekend, I bit the bullet and replaced all the ducts on that line
- what a pain, but the smell is gone. Those pipes were ruined, you
could tell after I took them out. Rusted and they had stuff in 'em way
past where I could reach inside, plus some on the outsides, between the
floor boards, where it had leaked thru the seams. Used aluminum flex
ducting to replace the curly bits - made the job a bit easier.
replying to email@example.com, time4tt wrote:
I had this problem and managed to solve it. I have two cats - one older one and
one younger. One or both of them (I believe the younger one) was urinating down
the vents. One cat was still using a litter tray, but one was also pooping in
the dining room. They had both used litter trays at some point. I tried putting
a litter box over the vent they used the most often, but they would find another
vent. I put pieces of wood with nails through it over the vents (made from the
stuff they use to hold carpets down), but the cats still used the vents. I was
also worried about a human or our dog stepping on the nails.
What worked was to make covers for the vents out of cereal box packets. I
attached these with Scotch tape and it covers the vent so the cat can't pee down
them. I put them on all the vents in the house (which meant eating a lot of
cereal!). At the same time I got two litter trays and took the covers off of
them (so it was just a tray with litter) so the cat wouldn't be afraid of going
inside a small area. I left the tray which was being used where it was and put
the other tray one the spot where the cat was pooping.
So far I've not had any problems (it's been a couple of weeks). My only concern
with this solution is hot air from the vents coming through the vents and
setting the cardboard on fire. You may want to get store bought cowels which do
the same thing, or try doing this in the summer when hot air isn't coming out of
I hope this helps.
We have 2 cats, the male uses the box which is even equipped with a
small exhaust fan to the outside of the house. BTW, last 2 cats ever due
to allergies and what follows. The female likes to anoint things. Now
that she's older, it sort of stopped. We're careful about leaving
plastic bags in her reach. Also, anything with a strong smell, might be
target. However, she still likes to pee on the cloths dryer or washing
machine ... go figure. I cobbled together an X10 solution. I put a
little wireless motion detector to the side of the washer and dryer.
Also, there is a Universal Module right there, which beeps 4 times,
rather loudly, when the space is invaded. There is also a manual
controller which lets us shut it off when we want to use the space.
Problem completely solved. The things stupid people do in order to have
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.