Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Ms. Fixit and the Weird Smells

There has been a weird smell in and around my kitchen for several days now. The smell reminded me of mouse urine. Yep...mouse urine. I'm not even going to go into how I know what that smells like, but I have cats that like to bring in mice to play with...sometimes the mice escape. 'Nuf said.

I decided to take everything out of the pantry, get rid of any out-dated food and clean everything. Add to that the fact that the middle shelf in the pantry has been about to come crashing down at any minute because of a screw that is loose, and it was time to do something about the pantry. I took all the food out a shelf at a time.

Here's the Before Pantry

Here's the stuff from my bottom shelf

Here's the stuff from my middle shelf - along with the shelf!

Here's everything that's getting thrown away.

When I went to figure out how to fix the shelf that was about to crash onto the pantry floor, I found that it wasn't because the weight of the food, but because of shotty building. Apparently the builder who put in the shelves tightened the anchor too much and put a huge hole in the sheet rock. Instead of replacing the sheet rock like he should have done, he just put a small piece of wallboard over the hole and screwed the shelf onto that wallboard that was about 1/8 inch thick. The ONLY thing holding up the shelf on that side was the second screw.

I was soooo... mad. Why in the world anyone would think that would actually hold any weight for an extended period of time. What a lazy way to fix something.

It took me awhile to finally figure out how to fix it. I tend to be a fix-it person. I always work to fix things myself. I tend to be a handy-woman. The ability to fix things without the proper tools or supplies is one of the genes I've gotten from my dad, so I got out the toolbox and started digging through it to find some way to fix the shelf without having to move all the shelving braces to a new spot in the wall. In the end, I just got a new anchor and used it along with the aforementioned piece of wallboard.

The "After" look

After getting everything put back into the pantry, I decided to mop the floors. It was while mopping the floors that I finally figured out where I think the smell was coming from. I just turned the heater on this week, and remembered that I hadn't cleaned the filters yet this year.

The filters actually looked like they hadn't been cleaned in over a year. I don't know when the last time I cleaned off the filters was, but it's done now and I'm hoping the smell is gone with the dust!

UPDATE: After cleaning the filters, I've decided it wasn't the filters that was causing the smell. It was two sacks of nonburnable jars and cans that I had in the pantry. I'm waiting for a good time to drive them down to the dump. I didn't want to put them on the back porch because animals get into them. I didn't think they would smell because the jars had lids and the cans were rinsed out. Or at least I thought they were rinsed out...


Mrs. E said...

Wow! You were ambitious. I can't fix anything. I am dreadful with a screwdriver or hammer. That pantry looks pretty great. You're inspiring me to attack mine--and right behind that, my cupboards!

Smalltown Girl said...

@ Mrs. E - I'm better at projects like cleaning out the pantry than I am at regular day to day housecleaning...

Holly said...

I tend to be a fix-it girl, too. It feels going knowing you accomplished something, doesn't it?

I'm glad you finally figured out what the smell was. I hate it when that happens.