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Old 02-24-2007, 11:15 PM
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danny jones
Exclamation Did I get bad WVO?!?!

I aquired 20 gallons of WVO from a San Diego County recycling place yesterday, and started filtering it this early afternoon. I use open top 30 gal steel drums so I can keep a thermometer floating on top. Maybe I'm used to the fumes, but my wife complained of the smell, and when her parents came over later in the day, her mom complained of a headache and her dad (who is very sensitive to odors, just had a triple bypass) threw up. At the time, I was out the house, so this is what the wife told me....I do my filtering in the attached garage, and there is a small hole between the kitchen and garage for when I had a "cat door" going into the garage, but I don't see that as a problem. I had the garage door open, and it was 70 degrees outside so I had the windows open. I have been filtering for about two weeks so far, and I haven't had any issues- sure heated WVO isn't the most pleasant smelling stuff on the planet, but I never got a headache, and I smell it for "prolonged periods of time". Is there anything I should do to "test" to see if I have contaminated oil? I tried burning a few drops on the garage floor, and it wouldn't ignite, it burned when I put some on a papaer towel, but it didn't smell any different than it should. Any advice??
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Old 02-25-2007, 10:13 PM
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Only two things I can think of. The oil would smell rancid if it was already bad and any burning of this would emit an odor anyway. Second would be some carbon monoxide somehow in the house? Your in Cali and not too cold from your own heating appliances and second I double you are lighting a fire in your garage with the doors closed. How did your wife describe the smell?

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Old 02-26-2007, 12:07 PM
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Kennedy- I only used a 1500w water tank heater well submerged, and the top of the oil only reached 140 degrees, so I know there should almost none if any kind of vapors present. Last night, while at the urging of my family and wifes dad, I moved all my WVO containers outside. Never mind I had the drum caps strapped down, and I am haz mat certified- that's another story....But I had to drain the heating tank so I could lift it off the shelf. While draining it into a floor level drum, the wife complained again of the smell. I would rather smell a pine tree than WVO, but I wasn't getting nautious, or dizzy, or anything condusive to being exposed to hazmat. I'm starting to think these people are too sensitive. Heck, match sulfar will make me damn near throw up, but it won't bother most people. Maybe that's the case here, but inversly?? At this point I am more concerned about running something through my engine that may cause damage, but again it "smells ok. OH, I have smelled rancid oil before- worse that vinegar poured over a dead rat LOL. Thanks!
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Old 03-01-2007, 09:19 PM
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Sounds to me like your family is sensitive, and closed minded. I have come across some rancid oil, but it is very obvious. Remember, at least 50% of any sensory input is self generated. Meaning, if their view on it is "that's gross" then it could smell like Pizza, and they will mentally interpret it as something vile.
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Old 03-01-2007, 09:33 PM
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Are you converting to biodiesel or are you just running wvo?
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Old 03-01-2007, 11:31 PM
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I'm on board with what you're saying Jason. Maybe I'm just more able to resist certain things, smells... And Kennedy- I'm just, well I was, just heating WVO to filter it. I would have liked to, but I don't have the room, or the family with understanding enough of what I'm trying to do....
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Old 03-02-2007, 12:28 AM
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Bad Waste Veg Oil:
Some of this is relevant, some isn't,

I had a bad batch of WVO from a restaurant once. All indications said it was normal oil.. it reacted normally also but any water used to wash it immediately turned it into an emulsion that was stable for weeks.
I took a few gallons home with me and put it through the rigors of my lab.. tested it every way I could and made a couple dozen test batches. Nothing worked. The stuff would form an immediate emulsion upon washing. I never did figure out what caused it but the entire load of oil became furnace for my waste oil heater.

Ok.. enough of that,
More relevant:
I opened up a waste oil renderer's bin once and it was so bad it almost made me puke on the spot. There was a whitish foam on top with big islands of red and green stuff growing. The smell was unbelievable.
That's bacteria and it will die as soon as you heat the mixture up to 160 degrees and hold it there for a while.
If you can stand the smell, there's no reason I know of why it wouldn't make normal biodiesel. The smell should go away as the heat kills the bacteria.

As for other people, as time goes on and our civilization uses more and more chemicals for everything, people have become more intolerant to certain things.

Some people can sniff methanol all day long and say they experience no side effects.. With others, they end up in the hospital with the slightest hint of smell.

Additionally, many people fake headaches due to unpleasant smells. This provides them an excuse to complain. Its a normal thing I guess.

And just a tip from the Murph:
How many people have stinky well water? You know, that rotten egg smell? There's a way to get rid of that. Add 1 gallon of household bleach to 5 gallons of water. Mix well and pour down your well head. Let sit for 6 to 8 hours. Run all faucets in the house for a full 2 hours. Repeat every 6 months.

Last edited by cookie88; 03-02-2007 at 12:48 PM.
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Old 03-02-2007, 12:28 AM
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