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Gas & oil mixture spill

On the way to the recycling place, I had to stop short and the container fell over,the lid popped off, and the oil - gas mix spilled about a coffee can full in the back of my 2005 Escape. I removed the carpet and floor board and left outside but they still stink. the interior smells of oil. Any ideas?

Try a tray of activated charcoal. It will take time to adsorb the fumes but eventually it will do so.

The gasoline allowed the oil to penetrate everything it touched…The ONLY cure is to replace everything it soaked into…You could TRY taking the carpet, mats, floorboards to a car wash and pressure wash them. Then let them dry in the sun for a few days…

If this was clean 2-stroke mix, you could have just burned it in the Escape…One gallon per tank-full, something like that, won’t hurt anything…

I agree, you’ll probably need to replace the soft stuff. Only option is to use a strong detergent to try and wash it out. Maybe some sort of carpet cleaning machine.

When I spill oil on cement, I put about a half inch of cat litter on the spill, let it sit there a few days, which draws the oil out of the cement. Might be worth a try. Inexpensive fix if it works. You’ll probably have to remove the carpets and clean them with a strong detergent, or it might be easier just to have them replaced with new. In any event you’ll have to remove the carpet so you can wipe clean the metalic shell under the carpets.

Be aware that a gasoline and oil carpet is subject to spontaneous combustion, so you should deal with this quickly and maybe not park your car in the garage until you get it taken care of.

When I take oil in my car for recycling, I put a plastic garbage liner in a tall cardboard box and put the oil containers in that. I use the same technique with the oil drain pan when I change the oil. Saves clean-up time.

Thanks for all your suggestions!

Is the smell really unbearable?

Oil cleaned up with Cat Litter or clay based products like Oil dri are mandated under the US EPA’s Paint Filter Test to be disposed as HAZARDOUS WASTE. I am mounting an effort to change the practices of concerned consumers and to stop using clay to clean up oil spills.