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#2994924 - 05/06/13 07:18 PM New Sandals smell like Harbor Freight
wrcsixeight Offline


Registered: 10/15/10
Posts: 1148
Loc: california
We all know that smell when in Harbor Freight, like some combination of rubber and plastic that I have some to associate with products from China.

Well, I was in everybody's favorite mass retailer/ purveyor of Chinese goods last week and found a set of flip/flops sandals of tolerable design and price and took them home.

I had not realized that smell was coming from them, but when I did, I scrubbed them with a fingernail brush and some dawn dish soap and hung them out to dry, yet the smell was not attenuated at all. From several feet away, on a windy day, I could smell them.

They have been hanging outside for 4 days now, in the sun and rain, and the smell has reduced by perhaps 50%.

Honestly I wish I didn't remove the stickers and attempt to wash them as I would just return them. They just smell so chemically wrong, I do not want to put my feet into them lest such unknown chemicals pass into my body.

Any hope they will eventually stop off gassing this noxious chemical odor? Anybody know what it is and how dangerous, or not, it might be?
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#2994925 - 05/06/13 07:21 PM Re: New Sandals smell like Harbor Freight [Re: wrcsixeight]
eljefino Online   content


Registered: 06/15/03
Posts: 25441
Loc: ME
It's not far off from "new car smell". I'd guess a volatile petrochemical like a plasticizer. Could also be a formaldehyde like in carpet glue. Give them time. Leave them in direct sunlight.

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#2994927 - 05/06/13 07:22 PM Re: New Sandals smell like Harbor Freight [Re: wrcsixeight]
Mr Nice Offline


Registered: 09/12/04
Posts: 13302
Loc: USA
Try vinegar to remove smell.

I know the China smell when I go to WMT.

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#2994949 - 05/06/13 07:39 PM Re: New Sandals smell like Harbor Freight [Re: wrcsixeight]
Jakegday Offline


Registered: 05/25/09
Posts: 998
Loc: fremont nebraska
A day or twos worth of use has always extinguished any smell from any of my new pairs of footwear.
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#2994963 - 05/06/13 07:49 PM Re: New Sandals smell like Harbor Freight [Re: wrcsixeight]
wrcsixeight Offline


Registered: 10/15/10
Posts: 1148
Loc: california
I've never had any footwear that smelled this strongly when new. I think I'd rather smell foot cheese than this eye watering Chinese rubber smell you can practically see.

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#2994973 - 05/06/13 07:57 PM Re: New Sandals smell like Harbor Freight [Re: wrcsixeight]
yonyon Offline


Registered: 03/06/12
Posts: 3492
Loc: NJ, USA
Is the weather warm where you are? If so, leave them outside to bake in the sun for a couple of days. That should help.

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#2994977 - 05/06/13 08:01 PM Re: New Sandals smell like Harbor Freight [Re: wrcsixeight]
wrcsixeight Offline


Registered: 10/15/10
Posts: 1148
Loc: california
Couple days were in the mid 80's. They are hanging in the sunlight. I'll give them a few more days, or until my current set self destructs.

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#2995014 - 05/06/13 08:32 PM Re: New Sandals smell like Harbor Freight [Re: wrcsixeight]
L_Sludger Offline


Registered: 10/04/09
Posts: 2675
Loc: NORTHCOM AOR
+1 to the suggestion of just wear them. trust me, something will give.

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#2995033 - 05/06/13 08:48 PM Re: New Sandals smell like Harbor Freight [Re: wrcsixeight]
itguy08 Offline


Registered: 09/15/11
Posts: 1792
Loc: Central PA
1st mistake was buying sandals. Gross.
2nd was buying junk at Wal-Mart.

Sorry, couldn't resist.
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#2995068 - 05/06/13 09:37 PM Re: New Sandals smell like Harbor Freight [Re: itguy08]
Ken_W Offline


Registered: 01/08/12
Posts: 140
Loc: Southeast Michigan

Just give it time... Whenever I buy a new shower curtain, I have to air it out for a week before I can install it, but it eventually stops smelling like toxic death.
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#2995512 - 05/07/13 01:15 PM Re: New Sandals smell like Harbor Freight [Re: wrcsixeight]
Tempest Offline


Registered: 03/21/06
Posts: 10468
Loc: Las Vegas NV
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#2995751 - 05/07/13 07:25 PM Re: New Sandals smell like Harbor Freight [Re: wrcsixeight]
Mr Nice Offline


Registered: 09/12/04
Posts: 13302
Loc: USA
I wonder what poisonous chemical(s) her skin absorbed with those flip-flops ?

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#2996264 - 05/08/13 11:07 AM Re: New Sandals smell like Harbor Freight [Re: wrcsixeight]
GreeCguy Offline


Registered: 03/21/05
Posts: 2677
Loc: Elderly County, Florida
Throw them out - a trip to the doctor with a strange foot rash will be a lot more expensive, not to mention pain and suffering.
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#2996276 - 05/08/13 11:20 AM Re: New Sandals smell like Harbor Freight [Re: wrcsixeight]
surfstar Offline


Registered: 09/16/04
Posts: 4532
Loc: Santa Barbara, CA
If you still have the receipt - take them back. Print out that snopes article too if you're worried they won't return them.

Go to sierratradingpost, sign up for their deal flyer - order some good, name brand sandals when you get a good coupon via email.
Or go to 6pm.com, overstock, etc. $15 will get you a nice pair (that were originally way overpriced). Oh and they'll be comfortable, unlike that plastic shtuff from wallyworld - why would you buy those? You're Californian! You should know that a sandals should be comfy and worn whenever possible!

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#2996324 - 05/08/13 12:24 PM Re: New Sandals smell like Harbor Freight [Re: wrcsixeight]
OVERKILL Offline


Registered: 04/28/08
Posts: 27842
Loc: Ontario, Canada
When you buy [censored], often you get.... [censored]! It is easy enough to avoid the Chinese garbage. The reality is that most people are too cheap to do it.
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#2996336 - 05/08/13 12:35 PM Re: New Sandals smell like Harbor Freight [Re: GreeCguy]
itguy08 Offline


Registered: 09/15/11
Posts: 1792
Loc: Central PA
Originally Posted By: GreeCguy
Throw them out - a trip to the doctor with a strange foot rash will be a lot more expensive, not to mention pain and suffering.


Don't forget all the junk on the ground that your feet will come in contact with while wearing sandals. They truly are the grossest (is that a word) form of footwear. Do yourself a favor and skip the sandals. Not only will you stop looking rediculous you may prevent a nasty infection.

http://www.steadyhealth.com/articles/Wea...ble__a1951.html

http://collegecandy.com/2009/08/18/your-flip-flops-will-kill-you/

http://www.nydailynews.com/life-style/he...2#ixzz0Nt1YhbEA
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#2996339 - 05/08/13 12:39 PM Re: New Sandals smell like Harbor Freight [Re: itguy08]
surfstar Offline


Registered: 09/16/04
Posts: 4532
Loc: Santa Barbara, CA
Do you wear rubber gloves for all of the surfaces that you may touch throughout the day?

If your body can't handle walking around without shoes and socks, that's pretty sad. Nothing like sand between your toes sailing

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#2996345 - 05/08/13 12:45 PM Re: New Sandals smell like Harbor Freight [Re: surfstar]
itguy08 Offline


Registered: 09/15/11
Posts: 1792
Loc: Central PA
Originally Posted By: surfstar
Do you wear rubber gloves for all of the surfaces that you may touch throughout the day?

If your body can't handle walking around without shoes and socks, that's pretty sad. Nothing like sand between your toes sailing


No but people don't routinely spit, vomit, spill things, dogs don't typically urinate or deficate, etc. in the places I put my hands on. In short, I don't walk around on my hands and the nastiness that generally is the ground. I won't even discuss the nastiness that is wearing sandals in a public restroom.

Nothing wrong with germs - I'm not a gemophobe. But I wouldn't go out looking for germs either.

Sorry, sandals are germ breeding grounds (fact) and are not attractive at all (subjective) and should not be worn except in very narrow circumstances.
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#2996430 - 05/08/13 02:50 PM Re: New Sandals smell like Harbor Freight [Re: wrcsixeight]
wrcsixeight Offline


Registered: 10/15/10
Posts: 1148
Loc: california
I don't peruse Bitog for fashion advice. I simply can't be bothered with other peoples opinions on that.

Sandals are convenient, and I 'll happily go barefoot before putting on my tennis shoes.

I generally scrub my sandals daily with a bristle brush, as they certainly can get funky. I also use various tools to keep my foot callouses from getting too thick, otherwise they crack and bleed. I am not one of those pink footed Nancy's that can't step on a pebble without watering their eyes.

I agree these wally world purchased sandals were a very poor purchase I regret. I pretty much regret every time I step into wally world, and getting out quickly is first and foremost in my mind. I do not have the receipt. I usually get drug store sandals in the 8 to 12 dollar range as I have found some which last as long as the higher end name brand sandals, but these are seasonable and not in season yet apparently.

All my higher dollar sandal purchases have not been worth the extra spent.

The sandals in question are still stinky, still hanging in the sunlight, and will remain there until I can't smell that horrendous chemical stank, from 5 feet away or more.

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#2996432 - 05/08/13 02:51 PM Re: New Sandals smell like Harbor Freight [Re: wrcsixeight]
OVERKILL Offline


Registered: 04/28/08
Posts: 27842
Loc: Ontario, Canada
Originally Posted By: wrcsixeight

The sandals in question are still stinky, still hanging in the sunlight, and will remain there until I can't smell that horrendous chemical stank, from 5 feet away or more.


And then they'll just slowly give you cancer without the tell-tale odour smirk
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#2996478 - 05/08/13 03:44 PM Re: New Sandals smell like Harbor Freight [Re: wrcsixeight]
stephen9666 Offline


Registered: 12/08/06
Posts: 2725
Loc: USA
For your next pair of Sandals I would recommend Okabashi. They're affordable and USA made. I have two pairs and I've been really happy with them for the price. The last pair I bought was $17 on Amazon.

They have a smell when new, but it's not a normal offensive plastic smell, I don't think. It also isn't real strong and fades quickly.

http://www.okabashi.com/

And, all the posts knocking sandals are dumb. If you don't like them, don't wear them. I wear sandals a lot in the summer since they're much more comfortable in the heat. I've never had a foot problem caused by sandals and they don't really ever smell very bad. My shoes definitely sometimes smell worse than my sandals.


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#2996610 - 05/08/13 06:25 PM Re: New Sandals smell like Harbor Freight [Re: wrcsixeight]
DBMaster Offline


Registered: 09/18/12
Posts: 2740
Loc: Greg Abbott Land
These are my favorites. $30 on eBay. $30 for a pair of flip flops!? Definitely not your average flip-flop.

Keen Sandals

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#2997384 - 05/09/13 02:02 PM Re: New Sandals smell like Harbor Freight [Re: wrcsixeight]
GreeCguy Offline


Registered: 03/21/05
Posts: 2677
Loc: Elderly County, Florida
I go barefoot as often as possible. My feet are the picture of nastyness. Rough, hard, calloused. When we lived in Alabama, we had a long gravel driveway. Almost every day, I would walk down the driveway to get the mail and walk back again. My children talk about that even to this day, how "Daddy have feet of iron." Now that I live in town, I test my leather feet on the hot asphalt. Imagine walking down a blacktop road on a hot summer day with no shoes. I figure the heat kills anything that might be growing on them.
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#3028037 - 06/09/13 04:29 PM Re: New Sandals smell like Harbor Freight [Re: wrcsixeight]
wrcsixeight Offline


Registered: 10/15/10
Posts: 1148
Loc: california
The sandals have been outside for the last month. The smell has faded to about 20% of original strength, but re emerges when I squeeze the rubber. I put them on and walked the ocean waterline for a half mile, but it seemed to have no effect on the smell, and they are back out in full sun. More of a UV degradation experiment at this point.

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