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Old 07-24-2007, 12:01 AM   #1
jakaylee's Avatar
1976 Argosy 28
Langley , Washington
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 5
Cleaning Cushions

Is there anyway to get the musty/mildewy smell out of our foam cushions? They are in excellent shape otherwise. We went to a foam store to order new cushions and were quoted over $700 for all the foam for our 28' Argosy. They said that the type of foam we have doesn't break down. If I can clean it, I want to keep it. Help!!!!

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Old 07-24-2007, 03:56 AM   #2
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2005 28' International CCD
Ottawa , Ontario
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 587
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I'm not sure if this helps much, but I just recently brought my cushions in for drycleaning as my kids were spilling every bit of food and drink known to man on them...

They were awful.

After drycleaning, they were as good as new. Cost me $20 Cdn per cushion. I'm not sure if that would combat the musty smell though - if the drycleaner can't do it, perhaps a Janitorial supply store can help with suggesting a product? Or spritzing the foam with a water and vinegar solution and letting it dry?

Good luck!


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Old 07-24-2007, 09:02 AM   #3
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1969 18' Caravel
Amherst , New York
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 5
I was a little hesitant before trying this, but I reasoned that I had nothing to lose. I did my cleaning in the driveway. For starters you can make a pool out of a blue tarp and some 2x4s, or you can use a child’s wading pool. Larger dimension lumber would be better, but 2x4s are all that I had at hand. My 1969 Caravel’s cushion covers were in good shape, but had a musty smell to them. I used cold water and laundry detergent to wash the cushion covers by hand. They line dried outside and there was no or very little shrinkage. The foam cushions minus the covers were done in the pool with detergent as well. I found that I had to do the foam cushions a few times to get out the years of dust, etc. I also used the same method for my original curtains. Again I experienced no shrinkage and the curtains had a good clean smell. Using the driveway and outside hose in the makeshift washtub made all this easy. Did everything look like new? No, but they looked presentable and they were clean. Caution: your mileage may vary.

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Old 07-24-2007, 08:01 PM   #4
jakaylee's Avatar
1976 Argosy 28
Langley , Washington
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 5
Thanks for the suggestions...

I will give the wet cleaning a try first and let you know the results. I should have done this two weeks ago when we had a long dry stretch. How long did it take for yours to dry? I live in the Pacific Northwest. It's really shady here and rains a lot.
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Old 07-24-2007, 08:05 PM   #5
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2016 20' Flying Cloud
Centennial , Colorado
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 1,065
Cleaning Cushions

I soaked my cushions in Amway LOC soap (gentle) and then let them sit in the sun for several days, followed by a generous spraying of Fabreze and then more days in the sun.

My neighbor is an excellent tailor and she sewed new curtains and matching slip covers for the cushions. We wrapped the cushions in a natural fiber batting to give added strength and put the new slip covers on. They look great, are strong and definitely saved lots of $$$$$

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Old 07-25-2007, 08:05 AM   #6
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1973 27' Overlander
1972 29' Ambassador
St. Paul , Minnesota
Join Date: Apr 2006
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The laytex foam on both of my trailers was discolored, and the '73's foam reeked of bug spray, air freshener and porta-potty blue water plus only God knows what. I cringed when I cut one in half to discard in household trash since I found it was perfectly new material just 1/4-inch beneath the surface but out went two sets of AS cushions anyway, I remembered seeing a sign in a foam shop saying they would not work with used foam.

When tracking down foam for another project I visited a small one-man foam & cushion shop and when I asked about it he said he would have 'shaved' the surface down on his $30,000 cutting machine w/o any problem.

$1000 mistake. I'd certainly salvage the foam and re-fit or replace covers if I were to see another 35-year old cushion set...

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Old 09-09-2007, 02:19 PM   #7
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1970 23' Safari
Wyoming , Michigan
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 14
Here is a trick I found online that I tried with my other camper and it worked quiet well. I washed the foam cushions in a laundry soap. The idea of using a kids pool or one fashioned from 2x4's and a tarp would work too. To dry the cushions, I placed them in a garbag bag (or two taped end to end for the larger ones - and left just enough opening for my wet vac hose. By twisting that opening around the suction line, of the wet vac, it sucked out nearly all the water, and the cushin actually shrinks down to a very small size. When you rremove the nozzel of the vacuum - it fills with air to its orginal shape. I was amazed how the "Musty smell" was removed. A few days outside on the deck, (not directly in the sun) dried them out quite well. to avoid getting the camper musty smell - we now store our cushins inside the house.

Forutnately the A/S we are now working on has had new cushions made and we are storing them inside as well.

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