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Strange Silicone Mold Odor Problem

kaleokahu Aug 14, 2013 09:31 AM

A couple of years ago, Wahine bought me two of the W-S black silicone icecube molds, the kind intended for making "big" cubes for cocktails. They basically live in the reefer's freezer section, and work just fine. I took them both out last night because some ice had sublimated away, and I thought I'd give them a wash.

The problem? They now smell like an ashtray. We don't smoke, nor do we allow smoking in the house. A soak overnight in baking soda water did not solve the problem, so now I'm trying vinegar.

Anyone else have this problem? Any solutions for deodorizing would be appreciated.

Mahalo,
Kaleo

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  1. k
    KungPaoDumplings Aug 14, 2013 09:42 AM

    I'm not certain if this is the same problem, but:

    This reminds me exactly of the Tovolo perfect cube and King cube problem. People bought them and either from the get go or most reported over time that the silicone that was used slowly broke down in the freezer and started to smell strongly; most say that it smells chemical, but there are reviews with other descriptions of scents. If you read 1-2 star Amazon reviews on these you'll find a lot of comments about it.

    http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_sab...

    2 Replies
    1. re: KungPaoDumplings
      kaleokahu Aug 14, 2013 10:29 AM

      Thanks, KPD!

      1. re: kaleokahu
        k
        KungPaoDumplings Aug 14, 2013 10:31 AM

        You're welcome!

    2. p
      pharaohes Aug 14, 2013 10:35 AM

      You could also try to boil with baking soda for 15 minutes. We've done that with silicone baby bottles to remove odor, with some success.

      I should clarify that this solution worked better for us than simply soaking in baking soda water or using a vinegar solution.

      2 Replies
      1. re: pharaohes
        kaleokahu Aug 14, 2013 10:41 AM

        OK, after the vinegar, that's next on my list. Thanks!

        1. re: pharaohes
          k
          KungPaoDumplings Aug 14, 2013 10:46 AM

          I'll have to use this method the next time my silicone cake mold starts getting imparted flavours.

          Thanks for the tip!

        2. girloftheworld Aug 14, 2013 02:37 PM

          it is from the charcol filter in the freezer... a soak if vineagar doent do it... try putting them in the sink with some orange juice and tomato juice over night.

          1 Reply
          1. re: girloftheworld
            k
            KungPaoDumplings Aug 14, 2013 03:14 PM

            That makes a lot of sense, have you had this problem before?

            It's interesting to know what makes this happen.

          2. kaleokahu Aug 15, 2013 01:14 PM

            Update:

            Soaking in water with baking soda: STRIKE ONE
            Soaking overnight in vinegar: STRIKE TWO
            Boiling for 30 minutes with baking soda: STRIKE THREE

            The first two did nothing. The boil caused the whole kitchen to smell almost as foul as the trays, and the discard water was every bit as smelly as the trays, so at least some of the odor came out (but not much). How something so small and thin can continue to smell *so* bad after all of this just from being in the freezer is a little alarming. After this all leftovers >1 week old are getting tossed, too.

            I may try a few more boils because these trays were pricey.

            The take-home here is not to leave any silicone molds in the freezer. Turn out the frozen item as soon as it freezes and store the molds elsewhere.

            2 Replies
            1. re: kaleokahu
              k
              KungPaoDumplings Aug 15, 2013 01:21 PM

              That's really too bad to hear Kaleo, I hope the future boils work out for you.

              "The take-home here is not to leave any silicone molds in the freezer. Turn out the frozen item as soon as it freezes and store the molds elsewhere."

              I couldn't agree more. I'm sorry you had to find this out this way.

              I hope your trays clean up and that's too bad about the leftovers.

              1. re: kaleokahu
                p
                pharaohes Aug 15, 2013 10:53 PM

                I'm sorry to hear that. It's interesting that the boil made your kitchen smell. did you use a new box of baking soda? I've boiled quite a few things and my kitchen/discard water never smelled of anything but baking soda. I also sometimes make a thick paste of baking soda and water and apply it liberally to the silicone bottles. Then I'll dump them in the boiling water and then after the bubbles subside, pour in a lot more - like half a box. I hope that subsequent boils/kitty litter work for you!

              2. kaleokahu Aug 15, 2013 06:02 PM

                AHA! (perhaps)

                The Google supplied this supposed fix: http://www.amazon.com/review/R3MOAOAO...

                This will be my final attempt. Since the silicone trays now smell worse than USED cat litter, what's there to lose?

                Aloha,
                Kaleo

                1 Reply
                1. re: kaleokahu
                  k
                  KungPaoDumplings Aug 15, 2013 06:16 PM

                  There really isn't anything to lose.

                  His review is really funny and informative, I hope his kitty litter fix works.

                2. k
                  KungPaoDumplings Aug 18, 2013 06:18 PM

                  Did the litter work?

                  6 Replies
                  1. re: KungPaoDumplings
                    kaleokahu Aug 18, 2013 07:01 PM

                    Hi, KPD:

                    Yes, that ashtray smell is totally gone! Considering how bad it was after ALL the many other tries, this is semi-miraculous.

                    It's been replaced by a very subtle lemon-lime scent, but far less than even dish soap imparts. I'm going to wash them well and have a bourbon to celebrate a fix that saved a $25 replacement.

                    (And keep them somewhere other than the freezer when not actually making ice!)

                    Aloha,
                    Kaleo

                    1. re: kaleokahu
                      k
                      KungPaoDumplings Aug 18, 2013 07:13 PM

                      That's brilliant!

                      Enjoy your bourbon, it's worth it considering everything that has happened and they money you saved!

                      I'm glad the scent is very subtle, I was wondering myself how strong it would be as my silicone gets rather strong from only soap. It's incredibly good to know it imparts less scent than even dish soap, how interesting.

                      How long did you keep it in the litter?

                      1. re: KungPaoDumplings
                        kaleokahu Aug 18, 2013 07:23 PM

                        Hi, KPD:

                        I put the trays in the litter on Friday morning, and checked them after I saw your post late this afternoon (Sunday).

                        I really am surprised how well this worked.

                        Aloha,
                        Kaleo

                        1. re: kaleokahu
                          k
                          KungPaoDumplings Aug 18, 2013 07:31 PM

                          That is really quick for something that was so completely far gone.

                          I am just as surprised as you are, I wholeheartedly agree about this being semi-miraculous.

                          What brand cat little did you use? Just the cheapest you could find?

                          1. re: KungPaoDumplings
                            kaleokahu Aug 18, 2013 08:51 PM

                            Hi, KPD:

                            Wahine takes care of the litter purchases. All I know is that it's the Costco brand in the green plastic jug.

                            Aloha,
                            Kaleo

                            1. re: kaleokahu
                              k
                              KungPaoDumplings Aug 18, 2013 09:24 PM

                              Is Wahine your partner?

                              That's a good description at least. I'll have to buy that if I have any silicone smell problems, the subtle lemon-lime scent sounds pleasant.

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