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Cleaning Out a Piano That Was a Home To Mice

Category Furniture

My husband recently bought a beautiful !9th Century Piano that was stored in a barn for some time and it was full of mice. He was able to get rid of the mouse nests after carefully taking out the keys and many of the panels but it still reeks of a very foul and musty mouse odor. We want to bring the piano into our house but not until the smell is gone. Any ideas?

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Love Antiques from North Dakota

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By guest (Guest Post)
October 11, 20060 found this helpful

Try wiping down really good with vinegar. My grandparents had a martin (weasel relative) get into their summer home in Colorado one winter. It ate rat poison and died but not until after living in the house for a while and going everywhere. The vinegar took the ammonia and animal smell out of all the carpets and furniture although we had to dispose of the actual feather mattress it died upon. Some things took more than one wipe-down and a sprinkling of baking soda which we vaccuumed up after it dried.

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By guest (Guest Post)
October 12, 20060 found this helpful

When we had a mouse for a pet, she was the cutest thing we'd ever had. However, her odors were so strong that even on plastic we could not understand why it was that way. She ate a huge amount of food

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for her size, and did little more than excrete all the time, so I would imagine with it being on/in wood, the chances of your ever getting rid of it or even eliminating a lot of it are very slim. DampRid would
be the first thing I would test to see if it might absorb some or all of it. Baking Soda in large quantities, changed often would be my second suggestion, AFTER you did everything possible to the
inside of the piano, being careful not to disturb the
wires or felt on the keybacks, AT ALL COSTS.

It's hard to imagine how such a single and tiny creature could be so smelly, but they are considered
vermin and after losing her, although cute and funny,
we do NOT regret having clean air. I believe that even if you are able to get a handle on it, it will likely be greatly labor intensive for you.

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Hope this helped, considering that antiques have an
odor of their own as well. Perhaps you could stain the interior unfinished wood after you clean it all out?
If you chose a wood color and let one section dry completely before moving to the next section, you
might find it masks very well, except for the odor
of the stain. This is what I would do. Good luck and God bless your trying to save the old piano. I took piano lessons for a little over 10 years and still have
my 55 yrs old Knabe which I learned on, hoping to get back to it one day soon, since I have no Arthritis
but hope my partially numb fingers/hands will heal
one day. : )

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October 12, 20060 found this helpful

The vinegar is a good idea. I would follow that up with crumpled newspapers (no colored pages) that you change every two or three days until the odor is gone. Then put some potpourri or something in there, just in case.

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By guest (Guest Post)
October 15, 20060 found this helpful

You might try filling several old socks with coffee grounds - you can use old grounds as long as you dry it out before putting it in the sock. Stuff them into the corners and leave for awhile. It got the smell out of an antique kitchen cupboard we bought at a sale. It took awhile, tho, but it worked!!

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