Anyone heard of this fishy smell?

lucky32October 16, 2010

I have this problem coming from a ceiling fan, from what I've read that smell is the over heating of those "plastics" resins whatever is in the ceiling fan from a short, and it is causing the outgassing of formaldehyde???? Is that is what the fishy smell is???? This has made my 15 yo daughter VERY sick for the past 3 months and I just figured out where the smell was coming from last week. She has every test under the sun and has been having seizure like episodes since July. I just stumbled upon other post about the mystery fish smell researched it more and found formaldehyde resins and such are in the plastics and decided to have her room checked for formaldehyde. It was about 4 times over the exposure limit... we have moved her out of the room, but I'm still trying to get info on this...any advice would be greatly appreciated! thanks!

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I don't know what sort of fan you have, but there is usu. Not that much plastic/'resins' in a ceiling fan. Not so much that it would be creating dangerously high levels of offgassing after months. That said, if your ceiling fan is getting hot Enough to smell bad, there is a problem. Stop using it and get an electrician in. I doubt that the problem is a 'short'. More likely a bad motor.

    Bookmark   October 16, 2010 at 8:00PM
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get an electrician to replace the fan. that is the easiest soloution.

    Bookmark   October 16, 2010 at 9:41PM
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First, I'm sorry to hear of your daughter's illness and sincerely hope that the cause, if it is external, can be determined and corrected. Second, if it is formaldehyde, I certainly hope that the source can be identified.

I am no expert on formaldehyde (other than experiencing it in new RVs over the years) but I am quite familiar with performing and following proper scientific testing which includes never making any assumptions.

If formaldehyde is in fact the cause you need to identify the source. The most common sources are items such as: flooring underlayment, carpeting, and particle board wood furniture. Are there any new items or installations of such? Typical off-gassing from electrical products is similar to the smell of the old "magic markers" from years ago.

I think the best direction is to verify the cause of the the problem, and then determine the source. Somebody that does environmental testing, but also that does not sell some sort of a "product to eliminate it", would be your best bet.

I wish you and your daughter the best of luck.

    Bookmark   October 16, 2010 at 11:05PM
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It was definitely her fan, we did air test before and after removing fan and her room was 2 1/2 to 7 times over what a normal home should be depeding on which values you go by. After we removed fan it was in the range of a "normal residence". and with in 2 weeks all her symptoms were almost totally gone, now she only has seizures when exposed to other things that contain formaldehyde...and trust me there are WAY too many to list!

    Bookmark   February 3, 2011 at 4:56PM
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I smell LAWYERS... sometimes they are the only way to force shoddy mfrs. to stop doing dangerous things.

Would you be so kind and public service minded as to post the make and model of this strange and sickening fan?

Thanks in advance.

    Bookmark   February 4, 2011 at 12:36PM
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I would never use the word "fishy" to describe the smell of formaldehyde. That does not mean that it can not be a fellow traveler with formaldehyde or what is causing your daughter to be sick.

    Bookmark   February 4, 2011 at 1:58PM
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Sounds like more cheap Chinese poisonous crap to me.

    Bookmark   February 4, 2011 at 4:05PM
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I opened a new blister-packed CF bulb a few weeks ago, and was greeted with that scent that most of us know and love, the odor of burnt phenolic that tells you the magic smoke has escaped from your electronic gadget. I thought for sure it would be DOA, but it works fine. It stank for several days, though.

    Bookmark   February 4, 2011 at 11:10PM
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Thanks for the interest, and yes since I last posted we have done more test on the fan and my daughter has had dozens of medical test. We got this fan out of her room and since then she has steadily improved and has went from seizures almost daily to only having 1 per month give or take. This formaldehyde exposure trigger her to have a reaction (= seizure) from exposure to anything containing formaldehyde (which is MANY MANY products!)The fan was a 3 blade silver harbor breeze fan from lowes...they no longer carry it...but amazingly JUST this week we found another family who has this SAME fan that is giving off a weird smell. We are going to check it out in person soon as we can! Will be interesting to see if it actually is givin off this same smell.

    Bookmark   June 30, 2011 at 5:23PM
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I had that problem with a girlfriend one time and had to get rid of her.

    Bookmark   July 6, 2011 at 10:50PM
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