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Cat Peed in AC/Heat Intake.

 
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Old 15 Jan 2011, 04:02 pm
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Question Cat Peed in AC/Heat Intake.

Whenever I use the AC or heat it smells like cat pee (which makes the AC/heat un-usable) so I assume a cat must've peed on the intake for the AC/heat.

I have two questions, 1. Do you think it would damage the car at all to spray one of those urine de-oderizers into the intake and 2. where is the intake located?

Thanks!
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Old 15 Jan 2011, 04:51 pm
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Default Re: Cat Peed in AC/Heat Intake.

You may have a plugged drain line. No, it shouldn't hurt the PT. The air intake is on passenger side close to the windshield, there is a "open" weave screen (w/holes about pencil dia), sometimes there is a filter there also. Did you buy it new? If not, the previous owner may have installed a filter. The screen can be removed. Good luck!!!!
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Old 15 Jan 2011, 05:24 pm
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Default Re: Cat Peed in AC/Heat Intake.

Doubtful it's cat pee, more than likely it's mold and that's much worse. There are treatments out there, I can't think of them off top of my head, but there must be some swamp water buildup somewhere. There are many places that can hold water if it's not draining properly, but you didn't mention the year so looking it up is difficult.

Post the year/model and I'll pull up the vent breakdown....

Just looking at the '01-'04 service manual, the AC evaporator housing has many places where condensation and/or liquid could possibly build up and cause the stink. To get to that, and verify all that is good and clean is one heck of a weekend project. The evaporator itself sits in a bed of foam that, if it remains wet, can mold and produce foul odors. It doesn't happen often and usually if you use your system on full blast it will dry out after a while. May be you need to wait for summer, but you'd be stinky until then...lol...

Last edited by Chromenut; 15 Jan 2011 at 05:33 pm.
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Old 15 Jan 2011, 05:40 pm
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Default Re: Cat Peed in AC/Heat Intake.

Okay, found many comments regarding the condensation drain tube and how, if it's clogged, it can back up water into the evaporator housing and cause all kinds of problems. Sounds pretty yucky if it is. Got to Michaels, or any other hobby type store, and get you some long, large pipe cleaners. I have these one's I bought at Michael's that are like 18" long, I use them all the time.

Then pull your drain tube, let any condensation/swamp water drain out, use the cleaner carefully to clean the opening area. This drawing below is only for the '01-'04 models, since you don't have your's listed I took a gamble that it was in that area. Shows you how to remove the drain tube. This is the most likely cause, there are others though.

I think after reading that section of the service manual I'm going to pull mine off just to be sure it's clean!!!



So, this would be my suggestion of a second step, AFTER you have looked to see if you have a cabin airfilter installed. I'm trying to look for a place that would hold odors that you'd notice both with AC and with heat. These are the only two places I can find other than digging into your vents themselves. Next step would be removal of the evaporator housing...

Last edited by Chromenut; 15 Jan 2011 at 05:42 pm.
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Old 15 Jan 2011, 07:13 pm
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Default Re: Cat Peed in AC/Heat Intake.

Thank you both for your replys!
It's actually a 2005 Turbo Model and I bought it new. The smell happened overnight so that's why I figure it was cat urine instead of mold although I don't have any experience with mold so I don't know.

Last edited by Mike_R; 15 Jan 2011 at 07:17 pm.
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Old 15 Jan 2011, 07:39 pm
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Smile Re: Cat Peed in AC/Heat Intake.

Hey their Mike_R,

Welcome to the Forum.

As to your problem, though it is difficult to give a good firm diagnosis without being there and smelling the odor first hand, my first guess might be to check and/or replace the Cabin Air Filter first.

If it has a rather pungent odor of something like urine, it may have come from a child or so forth having an accident in the car, the Cabin Air Filter could have easily embedded the odor into its fibers during normal circulation of air while either the AC, or Heater was on. I have run into this type of problem several times when I used to have my Detail Shop.

It is a fairly easy process to replace a cabin air filter. Here is a quick run through on how to do it.

OPTION 1: CABIN AIR FILTER REPLACEMENT


How to replace you Cabin Filter on your PT.


First off, here is what the Filter looks like. The Wix Part Number is #700602, which should run you somewhere from $17.00 - $20.00 or you could also head over to Home Depot or Lowes and look for a Filter for a Briggs & Stratton Filter #5083 which should also fit as well.



Next open your hood, and turn on your windshield wipers for a second just to relocate them temporarily to an up position away from your inner left side cowling which covers your windshield washer reservoir. Next you are going to want to pop up and remove the left side inner cowling which is simply held in by four plastic pop rivets much like most interior pieces are held in place with as well. Just be careful when pulling and try to fell as close to where the rivets are as to try not to snap or break any of the plastic rivets from the cowling if possible. Here is a pic of the cowling being removed.



Next you are going to need preferably a small ratchet with an extension and a 10MM socket. You are going to want to loosen and remove both the 10MM one bolt on the right side, as well as the two bolts on the left side as well and carefully rotate the reservoir outwards to expose the cabin air filter box.
Here is a couple pic's of the bolts and filter box exposed.








Now simply remove the air filter cover, and replace the filter. Here are a couple more pic's. Please note the Air Flow arrows need to be pointing inward for proper ventilation as shown in the last pic.





Next it is time to put everything back together. Be sure you secure the filter in at the bottom so you are sure you get the tabs back securely into their slots nice and tight.



Next place the reservoir back into its location, replace and tighten all three bolts back nice and snug, but not tight enough to break the plastic around the reservoir itself, and then carefully re-install the left side cowling back into its slot and you are done.


A little trick you may want to try as well when replacing your cabin air filter is to pick up a fabric softener sheet which you may use in your clothes dryer and place the sheet in front of the filter as you place it into the box. This should give off a pleasant fresh smell throughout your car and help to eliminate the offensive smell as well.

OPTION 2. COMMERCIAL ODOR ELIMINATOR

Next I would try a product called Odor Bomb produced by Dakota Products. It is a professional strength Odor Eliminator Product which has up to four times the deodorizing chemical and works better over most other household or similar consumer products like Febreze for example. Here is a Link to this Product from a Professional Detail Shop Supplier. This is a fairly decent Product, and comes in a variety of scents so you can custom pick whichever one for your vehicle, and it should also help a great deal with your odor problems either in conjunction with replacing your air filter, or as a stand alone product to hopefully eliminate your problem. Here is the Link.

Odor Bomb

OPTION 3. OZONE PURIFICATION

If nothing else will fix the problem, you may have to look for a Detail Shop which has an Ozone Generator. This is a specialized Generator which essentially cleans and purifies the air particles within your vehicles interior for up to 24 hours in order to completely remove and neutralize any odors or other types of air borne parasitic contaminants completely and safely and hopefully eliminate the problem for good. Basically what an Ozone Generator does is produce Ozone Gas in a large enough quantity that unstable organic compounds which create the offensive odors will react with the gas and be altered so that they will no longer smell, be irritating, or dangerous. Due in part to the fact that when working with an Ozone Generator you are working with a specific volume of gas when performing air filtration and purification, it is important to only use a qualified, and properly trained professional when inquiring about these types of Services. In other words, this is not a DIY project.

Prices for this type of Service varies depending on the type of equipment they may have on hand, how long they have to leave the machine running in your closed Interior to eliminate the problem, and so forth. Some Detail Shops may only have a small Ozone Machine which may take longer to do the job verses a larger machine, so I would try to shop around. If by chance you are not able to locate a Detail Shop in your area who does this Service, you may also want to look under Environmental Cleaning of Homes as they use Ozone Generators as well to remove various Odors from Fire, and Flood Damage which as you can imagine create some fairly unpleasant odors for sure.

Like I say, I would try the Filter first, and if that doesn't work, your last resort might be to have your Interior professionally Filtered and Purified professionally with an Ozone Generator.

I hope one of those methods should help you with your problem however if nothing else works, I may have a few more things to try in my bag of Detailing Tricks so please let me know how it all works out. As always if you have any more questions of any kind, I am always more than happy to try to help wherever I can anytime.
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Old 15 Jan 2011, 08:18 pm
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Default Re: Cat Peed in AC/Heat Intake.

Thanks so much CandyMan! I will definitely try those first two options and let you know how it works!
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Old 15 Jan 2011, 09:12 pm
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Default Re: Cat Peed in AC/Heat Intake.

beautiful instructions, this is actually gonna help me out with a totally different issue i'm having. Thanx Candyman.
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Old 15 Jan 2011, 09:33 pm
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Default Re: Cat Peed in AC/Heat Intake.

THE BEST tutorial I've seen in a long time! WTG CMan! Copied to *.docx and *.pdf if you want a copy, Cman, let me know!
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Old 15 Jan 2011, 11:28 pm
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Smile Re: Cat Peed in AC/Heat Intake.

Hey Guys,

I thank you all very much for the props! Always very much appreciated, and I am just happy I could help contribute something useful.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chromenut View Post
THE BEST tutorial I've seen in a long time! WTG CMan! Copied to *.docx and *.pdf if you want a copy, Cman, let me know!
Hey their Chromenut,

I thank you much. I am all set though with a copy both here, and over on my Forum at West Valley Cruisers as well saved in my ever growing archive of PT Information I have been collecting and accumulating so I recon I should be good on it, but I thank you once again. Much appreciated, and you are the man!
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