Monday, January 14, 2008

Pottery Barn Rug Smell

Welcome to my site, Stinky Pottery Barn Rug Owners!


UPDATE: SEPT. 8, 2009. CLICK HERE TO READ!

I have been overwhelmed by how many hits I receive a day by PB rug owners. Search phrases have included, "Smelly Wool Rug", "New Rug Smell", "Pottery Barn Backing Odor", etc. However you label it, it still stinks. People from all over the world share one of the same stinky problems. A common day brother or sisterhood, if you will. Where's our rubber "Live Strong" bracelets?

After doing some research myself, I have read many ideas why the rugs smell.
  • Are they sprayed with a chemical to keep bugs away during production and shipping?
  • Is it the latex backing?
  • Just the wool fibers and moisture?
I've also read that some people have complained and that PB has offered to take them back and refund a fraction of the cost. While I have not contacted PB about returning my rug, I will say that PB has always had a great return policy and have even offered extra credits because of mistakes on their part. I've had my rug for 2 years now and where I might feel compelled to search for answers from PB, I don't think I could ever call up and demand a refund at this point. I new of The Stink Probability when I bought the rug and I chose to take a gamble.

My job is to spread the word now. Don't get burned. Smell before you buy.

89 Responses to “Pottery Barn Rug Smell”

mama! mama! said...

Hi there,
I've had the same problem with two Pottery Barn Rugs. I'd love for them to up their quality control and so I started this online petition to try and get their attention.

Would you mind helping me spread the word? You can link to it from here:
http://twinsite.blogspot.com/2008/02/follow-up-to-pottery-barn-rugs-smell.html

Thanks!

Anonymous said...

This is not just a smelly odor. it is a toxic smelly odor. as in unhealthy for you and your kids. please take the time to report this problem with your State govt. Attorney General etc.

WS AKA PB is well aware yet they continue to sell these. Restoration Hardware also has the problem.

Anonymous said...

I am another owner of a stinky Pottery Barn carpet. I take it there is no solution to the stink? I did call Pottery Barn and was told that they were not aware of any problem. They need to stop selling these rugs. I think it is the latex backing that offgasses. I was hoping for a solution but I guess it is going to the trash...

baby sister said...

I too have a PB rug that I purchased nearly 3 years ago. The smell in our bedroom was making me think that our sheets or our bathroom was giving off some horrible smell (of course my husband hardly smells it, but I'm so disgusted by the smell). It wasn't until earlier this year that I finally figured out it was the rug. It makes me sad because it was such a cute rug, a really nice style and calming color. I will try to inform PB and see what they are willing to do, but since it has been so long, I can't imagine that they would be willing to do very much.

I am going to try the "sitting it in the sun with the bottom up to make it cure" and then adding baking soda to it and vacuum that up. We'll see if that works and if it does, I will let you all know.

baby sister said...

BTW, I signed the petition too.

baby sister said...

After reading all the things about the smelly Pottery Barn rugs, I called the Pottery Barn that I purchased my rug from some three years ago.

I spoke to the manager and she told me to bring it back for a full (in store credit) refund.

I had purchased it from an Outlet Mall in Birch Run Michigan and it was pretty far from home, so I figured out a date for when we would be "nearby" and took it back at that time.

The manager was not in that Saturday, but the cashier was EXTREMELY nice and made it very easy. Just prior to this cashier taking care of us, a different cashier had said "rug sales are final"...which made my stomach turn.

Anyway, it all worked out and we got a gift card to use at any Pottery Barn anywhere!

Amazing since like I said before, we had this rug for THREE years!

Anonymous said...

This is a health hazard. PB does not want you to get sick. The way the latex backing used to be manufactured, it would break down 1-2-3 or more years after purchase. They say the current new stock is made differently, however, make sure you are buying a newly manufactured rug, not old stock.

Pottery Barn current policy on the old latex-backed rugs is to refund purchase$ -10% for each year of use. This I confirmed today, so dont sweat the small stuff. call the corporate office @ 800-270-4508.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the information about the stinky PB rugs. I purchased two PB rugs for my daughter to crawl on. They were sooo soft but rugs gave off a horrible stench and were immediately banished to the garage.
I am retuning two rugs to Pottery Barn today. I called corporate and they are sending me rug return kits. At least Pottery Barn is taking care of the problem for those in the know.
Thanks for getting the word out.

Anonymous said...

Pottery Barn Kids knows about these issues and wants us to go away. My children have health issues and I believe they are linked to the rug purchased for the nursery in which my newborn children slept. I am pursuing this legally.

Anonymous said...

The numbers above and that I've seen posted for Pottery Barn corporate aren't working anymore. Has anyone had any recent success? Many thanks in advance.

April said...

I have the same problem. I bought my rug about 3 years ago. I want to know if you call corporate, if anything will be done after this amount of time?

Charisa said...

I know Baby Sister took hers back after 3 years, but I haven't tried with mine. Right now mine is in the basement so I've kind of forgotten about it. I should call, can't hurt!

brooke williams said...

I worked at pbk part time for years and I know they recalled a lot of rugs.

Anonymous said...

My PB rug started reaking last year after about 3 yrs of use. I had ordered it online, so fortunately when I called customer service they could track my purchase. They gave me a full refund (minus shipping) in the form of merchandise credit. I was a little disappointed that I didn't get my visa refunded (like I need $700+ in towels), not the $150 I had spent in trying to get it professionally cleaned, but nonetheless I was very grateful that they refunded me after 3 yrs.

Suzanne said...

I can't believe there are so many others out there like me! I bought our rug about 1.5 years ago. I noticed the odor shortly there after when we put it in our smaller TV/den room. I have professionally cleaned it, but nothing changes. I'm calling corporate tomorrow!

Tony said...

I took my 4 year old rug back to PB today and got a 100% refund of store credit.

Anonymous said...

Today, March 11, 2009, I called Pottery Barn to tell them of my similar dilemma with the Ajanta tufted wool rug I purchased in April 2006. I had attributed my breathing problems that started about 18 months ago to the rabbits in my sister's home. It seemed that for a few days after returning to my NYC apartment, the breathing issues subsided but still remained. I now know it subsided because my windows being opened reduced the concentration of the odor. My doctor had prescribed inhaler and meds, and even suggested it could be "stress related," which I knew was not the case. Meds were no help.

When I called Pottery Barn today, I urged the "specialist" to look into it, even though she told me the rug purchase was nearly three years. My insistence that what I was reading online about latex deteriorating over time is a defect & poor manufacturing prompted her to tell me she'd look into it and get back to me within a few days. Minutes later she called back & told me that they would arrange for UPS pick up of the rug and premium pad right away. Her supervisor asked if the rug purchase was made in 2006, as they had defects in rugs at that time and would replace it and the pad for the purchase amount, or give me a card with the same amount on it for other purchases. As we're required to have rugs in apts for sound reduction between units, I asked if there were any chance of the same odor developing and she assured me it only happened in 2006. I went online and selected new rug, called & spoke with a sales agent and asked if I upgrade to 8x10 instead of 5x8 I currently have, will they consider price allowance for the breathing issues, meds, doctor visits & threatening my sister's rabbits with ideas to shoot them (lol). The sales agent is looking into it and will call me tomorrow. While I'm pleased Pottery Barn is taking back the rug and pad, they did not answer why I was not notified of the defect. Obviously, Pottery Barn - like many businesses - cares more about profits than the health of their customers. Lesson: call and be insistent! Fortunately, this was not a battle, but does that mean it's because they know it's a greater health risk than I even think?

Charisa said...

Thanks for the last comment. I too, purchased my rug in 2006. I've never heard of the defect and will call to see if I have any luck. However, I would never buy another rug from them. I've had other family members with PB rugs not from 2006 and they've had the same odor issue. And, when I walk into my local PB store, it's the first thing I smell. Sounds silly, but each rug I buy has to pass the "smell" test.

Anonymous said...

I purchased an 8x10 wool rug from Pottery Barn about 5 years ago. Just recently did the rug start to smell like burnt vacuum or burning rubber. So I googled about smelly PB rugs and found so many hits! I was so happy that I was not the only one! So I started the long journey of getting a new rug out of this "Manufacturer Defect". Calling Customer Service, getting transfered all over, calling District Managers, getting transfered all over again....AND FINALLY GOT THE WORD FROM THE LOCAL POTTERY BARN RETAIL STORE THAT I AM ABLE TO EVEN EXCHANGE FOR A SIMILAR RUG!!! Keep fighting! It is worth getting rid of the horrible smelly rug for a brand new rug!

Charisa said...

All of their rugs smell. Go into a store and smell the ones on display. I would demand store credit.

Anonymous said...

Has anyone had a child with respiratory issues who had one of these rugs in his/her room? My child developed reactive airway disease, and I know another boy who had the same rug with the same issue. May be unrelated, but I've always wondered.....

Caroline said...

Today is June 11, 2009. Has anyone had recent experience(s) dealing with Pottery Barn on the smelly rugs? I own 2 stinky PB rugs that I bought in 2006 and just found the slew of posts and links about them online! It looks like the customer satisfaction level varies depending on who you talk with at Pottery Barn. TIA.

Charisa said...

Hi Caroline.

I have yet to make any calls regarding my rug. I should and plan to, it's just kind of an out of site, out of mind kind of thing since it resides in my basement. I know the longer I wait, the harder of a fight it will be. I'd start with the manager at your local store, then work your way up. Good luck and keep us posted!

Caroline said...

Hi Charisa,

I called my local Pottery Barn store today and told them about my two smelly rugs that we've had for 3 years. Chris, the employee, who answered the phone was very nice. He said the same thing about the latex breaking down and how they've stopped using latex as of 2007. Chris said "we got a memo about it last week". (I find that a bit questionable, but whatever.) I was offered a chance to exchange for same items or get credit for what the rugs are worth today. I opted for store credit. You just need to give them the 7 digit SKU # from the back of the rug, and they can tell you on the phone how much store credit you'd get. So, I sent my husband down to PB pronto with the two rugs, and we now have $700 of store credit. I wish I didn't have to go through this, but I had considered tossing the rugs, so it's better than nothing. Thanks so much for posting this information on your blog. The information you and everyone shared was very helpful and empowering!

Anonymous said...

I'm so glad to finally find out what the horrible smell was coming from my living room and dining room. I too, crawled around on the floor searching for the smell - electrical? After reading all the posts, i started my quest for an answer from Pottery Barn. First of all, if you ordered your rug from E-bay, give up in getting any money back from Pottery Barn.... they don't budge. Unfortunately i own 2 very large stinkers from E-bay so, i'll just chalk that up to experience. The other 3 rugs i own though, i bought on-line and PB has a record of that purchase, even though i've had these rugs for over 3-4 years. They claim that the latex problem is resolved and that i should be getting some bags in the mail to return the rugs, and that they will replace them.... we'll see. I'm still waiting for the bags to come. (but it's only been a few days) Somebody else wrote a blog about tearing off the backing and painting the back of the rug with an oil-based paint.... well, i tried tearing off the backing of my 3x5 stinky rug and that was a piece of work... after tufts of wool started coming out, i gave up and chucked it in the trash. Can't imagine yanking the backing off a 9x12. This whole problem is such a shame as the 9x12 i own is just beautiful and its not in stock anymore, - do i live with stinky or toss the beauty? thank-you everyone for your blogs - sure made an interesting 2 hours of reading the other night.

Anonymous said...

I am so glad I am not the only one with a stinky rug. Just thought I'd check to see if it was worth it to try and get the smell out. Doesn't sound like it. Bought mine second hand so PB won't help. These should be burned

Anonymous said...

i work at a pottery barn kids and im very bothered with the experiences ive had with some of the people returning old rugs. the odor comes from the backing that was used on the older rugs but isnt being used anymore, and the odor that the backing causes is a very distinct odor, and not all of the rugs have it. some people are coming in demanding to get a full refund for rugs that are old but dont even smell. people are trying to take advantage of the company when they dont even have a problem. i completely understand it if your rug smells and not wanting to have that around your children but at least be honest. at my store the managers have done everything in their power to accommodate people with rug issues but how do you expect to get a full refund for a rug that youve been able to use for sometimes up to 4 years, thats not really fair.

Beth said...

There have been almost 40,000 visits to this page. That says a lot! I too finally relegated my rug to the basement storage room. I loved it, it went perfectly with my decor but it just made me sick every night to smell it. I couldn't pretend for the sake of decoration that it was OK anymore! I can't bring myself to throw it out (so expensive) and I wouldn't give this problem to someone else! It has been too many years now for me to request a refund.

Kirsten said...

Wow.I can't believe I found so many with the same problem that I have. I have the beautiful rug from pottery barn I purchased at least 3 years ago. I REALLY love the look of it and ended up redecorating my whole house to go with its theme so I am sad to think of getting rid of it. I actually ripped out all of my carpet last month in my living room and moved the rug into that room because the smell in the house was so bad I figured it was my carpet. ( my living room and dining room which the rug was previously in are connected without walls) But then I could still smell the bad odor. With it being right in front of the couch now I could tell it was definately from the rug. I hand washed it VERY well with lots of GAIN soap mixed with BIZ and even a carpet shampoo for pet odors. It still smells the same stinky smell. And since I always fold my clothes on the floor in front of the tv my clothes are smelling bad especially the ones on the bottom of the pile. This is embarrassing to have people over with that smell. The kids in the neighborhood have even made comments. Adults would never say anything unless asked but thats just because they have more desency. I must say to the person who works at pottry barn that while its too bad that people are returning non-stinky rugs I have to stand up for the people whom you say have been living well with the smell for years only to finally return it years later. It sounds to me from all these posts that the smell just gets worse an worse over the years. Maybe like me they didn't notice it was the rug until the smell got stronger. I still haven't decided what I'll do as I truly think I'll be very depressed to give up my beloved rug but the posts about this possibly being bad for your health makes me pretty concerned as my son was just diagnosed with asthma this year.

Anonymous said...

Hi, first thanks to everyone for the good advice. I _just_ got back from PB in Toronto (Canada) and received roughly $625 on a gift card for returning both a 5 x 7 and an 8 x 10 wool carpets, both of which we bought in 2006. They entered the SKU into the computer and came up with a price, no receipt required. The whole experience took about 10 minutes and the staff were professional and pleasant. I would have preferred to keep the carpets but even after professional cleaning, the burnt rubber smell was terrible. This seemed like a fair outcome.

Anthony said...

Sept 1, 2009

Interesting website! One - but only one - of our Pottery Barn rugs quite suddenly developed this "burnt rubber" smell a couple of months ago, but it was only yesterday that I got round to Googling. Long story short: I went back to my local store this am, but they said they knew nothing about the problem and, though polite, were totally unhelpful. However, I then called Pottery Barn Corporate (415-421-7900 or 866-224-4598: you want "PB Customer Relations") and I hadn't even finished describing the problem before the very helpful lady said - Yes, we know about this, and we take responsibility... (she said that the "latex glue" was a mistaken attempt to use an all-natural product, which turns out to have a short life-span). She needed my SKU (from the back of the rug), has made a note of the issue, and passed it on, with my number, to the local District Manager to call me withing 48 hrs to arrange for some sort of swap / credit etc etc. She was pretty insistent that I should immediately remove the rug from any occupied room - so clearly they are concerned about their liability.

I take the point mentioned above that I've had about 3 year perfectly satisfactory use from the rug - so I guess a store credit of, say, 50% of the cost would be very acceptable. We shall see!

AGB

Anthony said...

Just a quick follow up. The PB District Manager contacted me within a couple of hours and - unprompted by me - offered a 100% refund of the cost of the the original 2006 smelly rug ($435 + tax), that to be handled at the local store. I immediately (I happened to need to be going in that direction...) took the rug to the store and spoke to the same guy who had done the "talk to the hand" thing before.... He was very contrite and helped me pick a replacement rug. He did try to shill me a bit: he offered a "replacement or store credit" but quickly backed down to the District Manager's offer of a full, unrestricted refund. As it happened, PB did have a good replacement rug (I even paid a little more for it, as it was a full size larger.... and I did need a rug), so we did a good deal.

So, all in all, great Customer Service from Pottery Barn - come on, a 100% refund on a used, 3- or 4-year old rug! Got to think they are worried about some real health liability issue..

Charisa said...

Thanks Anthony! Such helpful comments! So happy that you got that stinky rug out of your house! I NEED to call about mine!

Charisa said...

I finally called about mine and my story was pretty much the same as Anthony's. I did not have my original receipt, but they gave me store credit for the full price of the rug! Click on the update at the top of the post to read about it!

Anonymous said...

I didn't buy my smelly rug from Pottery Barn, but I'm wondering what brand are these rugs? And I'm wondering if they are all from the same company. Mine is a Feizy. I called the company and they tried to tell me this was normal and having it cleaned will take care of everything. I don't believe it based on the great personal experience information on this blog. If they can't sell quality products nor stand behind what they do sell, they need to be put out of business. Anyone else have a Feizy?

Anonymous said...

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Sorry for offtopic

Anonymous said...

I purchased a 9'X12' rug about three years ago and the burnt rubber smell started 4-6 months ago. After some research I learned that this was a common problem, Contacted the local store and they were not aware of it. They contacted the regional manager and offered partial credit and I found that unacceptable. After trying to mask the smell thinking it might get better it has only gotten worse. To the point I researched recent information and came across this site. I will now re-contact corporate and demand PB a chance to own up to a product they realize is defective and make good on a product when properly taken care of will last a lifetime. After all, I spent close to $1000 on this. Tahnks for the recent advise and I will advise the outcome.

Anonymous said...

Thanks goodness my search on Ask.com turned up this site! I was midway through shampooing my 8x10 Adelaide rug in a last ditch effort to stop the toxic stench. I've had the rug for about three years and the smell only became noticeable after a year. This week I was going to bring in a contractor to check my ceilings, walls, windows, and heat/cool vents to see if I had an environmental problem with the house. My dining room is front and center off the entry hall, and I've been embarrassed to have friends in for the last for the last few years: I actually cringe when people come inside, I never serve food, etc., and the rug has caused more anguish than anything I've ever, ever owned.

PB catalog service was was great; however, the local store in Syracuse is making me bring it in for an inspection, etc., and expressing dismay that I waited so long, would not acknowledge that the latex on the back presented a problem, etc. I've got my fingers crossed! So much for Thanksgiving. I'm putting my dining table and chairs on a the wood floors........This rug has been a HUGE disappointment. If the toxic gases weren't enough, it is very poorly made and has made me distrust all of PB's offerings because of risk....

Lisa said...

Just called the PB Corporate Customer Relations office and they were very nice. They are arranging for me to return the rug and will credit my account since they found that I bought the rug in 2006. They indicate that they have corrected the problem and newer rugs do not have the same issue with the latex backing. The # of previous posted, but here it is again 866-224-4598.

Anonymous said...

I was am so happy to have found this post after doing an internet search for "stinky pottery barn rug"!
For several months I could not figure out where the nasty smell in my house was coming from. Finally one day I crawled under my dining room table to pick something up, and got a whiff of "that smell" coming from my beautiful PB rug. That lead me to do a google search, and after reading all of the posts on this website, I finally figured out where that burnt rubber smell was coming from. I immediately called the Pottery Barn 1-800 number, and they instructed me to call the store that I purchased them at (I really purchased them on ebay). But I called my nearest store and explained about the stinky rugs and the information that I found on the internet regarding the stinky, defective latex. Even though I have had these rugs for OVER 5 YEARS!, and did not have a receipt or anything, they told me to bring them in and they would replace them with my choice of 2 brand new rugs of the same size!
I feel like I just hit the lotto! And now I have my clean-smelling house back!

Anonymous said...

Same problem here. We had a 5x8 Taylor rug from Pottery Barn Kids that we bought for my son's room back in early 2007. I noticed the smell about a year ago but my husband said I was crazy. I had the rug cleaned and the smell persisted. I sent an e-mail to PB Kids customer service last week and they have been incredibly helpful. They are sending me a rug return kit and will arrange with UPS to have it picked up. They said they would be giving me a store credit for the original purchase price of the rug but after reading the posts on this site I may push for a Visa credit since I will not be buying another PB rug. BTW my son has had a terrible cough most of his life (3 years) and it was the worst at night. I took the out of his room almost a month ago and he hasn't coughed since. Scary!

Susan from NJ said...

Wow, so glad I found this blog. For the past couple years, we assumed and blamed that nasty smell on the cat...lol. But in fact it is that darn PB Rug! It stinks and gives me headaches. I thought, hmm, maybe we got a bum rug...but now I know. I am now waiting patiently for hubby to arrive home with a NEW shag rug from Walmart! Goodbye stink, never again PB.

Anonymous said...

April 23. 2010 - If you have a stinky PB wool rug, don't do anything but CONTACT POTTERY BARN CUSTOMER SERVICE! I have just had a wonderful Customer Service experience with them over the issue of my stinky Malika rug. I called the Customer Service no. from their web page (someone has a telephone number here in the blog that is not correct), and was transferred to someone who was immediately helpful. She was able to look up and find the date and my original order no. as verification - even though it was late 2006! They would have refunded my full purchase price of the rug (actually more than the current online sale price), plus the pad and shipping costs. Since I have decorated a bedroom around the colors in this rug, I asked for and will be sent a new 9 X 12 Malika rug plus pad at no cost to me. Then I pack up the old rug and pad in the return plastic sleeve, and call them for pickup. Am I glad I made that call!
Our experience was as follows: the first year plus it was unwrapped. Then we put it down about 2 1/2 years ago. The room started to smell - a stale sort of smell - within 6 months. We also thought it was a leak or something structural in the walls, etc., but did not suspect the rug at first. The smell increased and was certainly not suitable for a guest bedroom! Picking up the corner and smelling the backing made it pretty clear it was the rug. I was about to send it out to be cleaned to try to get rid of the smell, but then found this blog and discovered that was probably not worth trying! (would have cost me $150, and the rug doesn't even need cleaning!) I do appreciate whoever started this "petition" blog,as I suspect it has motivated Pottery Barn to make good on the stinky rug issue. And they did!

Charisa said...

When I used the listed number on here, it was correct. Maybe they since have changed it. Glad you were able to get a new rug. This isn't a blog solely dedicated to a smelly Pottery Barn rug, it's just my personal blog. I've just written about what I've gone through and lots of people have found it and commented.

Anonymous said...

I have the same issue! My husband and I have torn our house apart looking for the terrible "burning rubber" smell. Finally (after crawling around the entire house), I realized it was my adorable PB rug by the front door! I called the number listed above and am waiting to hear back. Thanks so much for posting about this!

Anonymous said...

I too have two stinky PB rugs from 2006. I called and the manager is going to call back but it seems like I will get a refund or a store credit. I am hesitant to got 2 more PB rugs because of all the issues. Does any one have suggestions on nice, not too expensive, NOT SMELLY big rugs for my living room and dining room?

Charisa said...

My only suggestion would be to do some research before buying anything. I've heard Restoration Hardware rugs can be "smelly" too. Good luck!

Anonymous said...

I just got home with a rug I bought used. It is a PB 8x10 absolutely beautiful rug. I didn't even get home before I started to smell the burned rubber smell. I was looking on line for a way to clean it when I came across this blog. Thanks for saving me a lot of trouble! I am going to call the seller and try to get my money back!

Anonymous said...

Hi there,

(written on Oct 8, 2010) I have the same problem with a rug i purchased several years ago. I recently began smelling that toxic burning rubber smell and googled "Why does my pottery barn rug stink so bad" and it led me right to this site. I called the corporate office as advised by some of the folks here who have experienced PB's great customer service. However, it was explained to me that without proof of purchase (it was over 4 years and two houses ago when i bought the rug!) the store couldn't help me. i asked how they could expect me to still have a receipt for something from years ago and it was explained to me that PB originally was just telling people to throw the rugs away and sending them new ones. A few dishonest people (or more than a few, sounds like) decided to then sell the smelly rugs on ebay or at garage sales and as a result, PB ended up returning more rugs than they sold. So i will apparently be getting a call from the district manager who will try to help me, but again it was stressed that i needed proof of purchase. It was suggested i call my bank or cc company to get a statement from 4 years ago--I don't know about anyone else, but for me this is absurd. I have three bank accounts and at least four CC's--and have closed several accounts over the years. I have no way of even knowing what bank or card i purchased it with--not to mention the very likely possiblity that i paid cash, as I often do with large purchases. Just wanted to let other people know what they might be facing if they attempt to get their stinky rugs replaced--it seems some folks dishonesty may have ruined it for the rest of us :(

Samuel said...

There are factors why carpets smell. The abundance and repetitiveness of using insect repellants and deodorizer may lead our dear carpets to stink. The chemicals stayed on its micro fibers until it gets evaporated. But the problem is, a carpet should be well-dried or it will end up smelling our under-dried laundries. Number two is its latex backing. It has chemical components to so somehow stick on your floors, and in between those, a tiny air passage with air in it is being stuck, and eventually leaving it with a foul odor.

In my case, I hired a pro carpet cleaning. Naperville Illinois’ best came into my house and then explained to me everything in details. After thorough cleaning and putting some safe chemicals on it, the smell was already gone! And it happened 6 months ago! That’s why I am a big fan of carpet cleaning-Naperville professional way! You’ll gain and you’ll learn!

Oh, one thing… the third thing to consider is your own home. We should practice cleanliness at all times and at all ways. Thanks!

Anonymous said...

My PB rug purchased in 2006 had this same burnt rubber issue. I had the 9X12 Adelaide. After seeing this site I went to PB Beverly Hills and they immediately and without question gave me a full refund! I happened to have the original receipt (which didn't matter) which showed a 5/2006 purchase date!
Driving 5 miles with the rolled up rug in my SUV caused my chest to constrict and my eyes to burn. This thing was TOXIC!

Guy Fitzhenry said...

Stinky rugs can truly cause a lot of discomfort to the owner. I agree that prior to installation, it would be best to check if there are any unusual smell in your carpet.

In our case, the carpet had an odor because of our pets. That's why my wife and I decided to hire professional carpet cleaners Montgomery County to clean it for us. In Bucks County, carpet cleaners are the alternative to purchasing a new set of carpets. Definitely a lot cheaper.

I would definitely keep that in mind in our next carpet purchase. Thanks!

Jak said...

Just brought back a smelly 8 x 10 to pottery barn outlet store...must have been 4-5 years old....they didnt have a rug we liked so they gave us our money back....$699 +tax. No Receipt, but the rug was definitely defective.

I;m not sure why PB didn't recall them. A savvy lawyer should file a class action suit against them. I have to think that there are health concerns breathing in latex that is decomposing....

Anonymous said...

I purchased my four India tufted rugs from Pottery Barn in February 2010. This September my house started to smell very bad. The odder was so overwhelming it was torture being in the house. After several investigations I determined the walls had black mold and we removed all the plaster on the walls on the first floor. I was shocked to not find any mold bet now the basement stunk and we discovered it was the three Pottery Barn Rugs with a taupe backing. The total cost of this mess was $32,638.00. Now I am discovering Pottery Barn has been having problems with the rugs for almost five years before my rug was purchased. What kind of company it this? They clearly don’t care anything about the customers who purchase their merchandise. I am contacting my lawyer and throwing everything from Pottery Barn out to the trash because it makes me sick to even think about it. John Louney

Anonymous said...

I purchased my four India tufted rugs from Pottery Barn in February 2010. This September my house started to smell very bad. The odder was so overwhelming it was torture being in the house. After several investigations I determined the walls had black mold and we removed all the plaster on the walls on the first floor. I was shocked to not find any mold bet now the basement stunk and we discovered it was the three Pottery Barn Rugs with a taupe backing. The total cost of this mess was $32,638.00. Now I am discovering Pottery Barn has been having problems with the rugs for almost five years before my rug was purchased. What kind of company it this? They clearly don’t care anything about the customers who purchase their merchandise. I am contacting my lawyer and throwing everything from Pottery Barn out to the trash because it makes me sick to even think about it. John Lounie

Anonymous said...

My Pottery Barn rug from India is shedding white powder from the back. It appears to be brittle and I am wondering if this is toxic dust. The rug is less than six months old and it is very scary reading this blog. I will remove the rug from my home and thank you for the information. Tammy Wan from Atlanta

Anonymous said...

12/30/10
Thanks Tim for the info about india rugs at Pottery Barn. My 9x12 Brant rug from india in wool has a smell problem. The rug was not cheap at $899.00 and it stunk up our living room through Christmas. I thought Pottery Barn was a quality company what a joke on me that they still have not fixed this problem. Dina

Anonymous said...

thank you so much for this blog. I was amazed when I googled "burning rubber" smell and pottery barn rug! Our 9 x 12 rug was stinking up our sun room. I just called customer assistance and they are giving me a new rug for equal value (799.00 + tax). I just have to go on-line and pick out a rug or pick one out at my local Pottery Barn store. Pottery barn is really committed to making this problem right with its customers.

The internet rocks!

Thank you.

Heidi

Anonymous said...

White synthetic rubber latex rubber products use silica, china clays and light magnesium and carbonate as reinforcing agents. Indian products tested in my lab use fillers such as cotton flock, asbestos,synthetic resin sand and formaldehyde that could cause this odder. Dr Mat DeBouise

Anonymous said...

I called PB today about my rug that I bought online 5 years ago and have been dealing with the intensifying odor this past year. I called the customer service number on their website and after a few minutes of looking up my order and revealing my complaint..they are sending me a ship back bag and giving a store credit. They also stated that the problem had been resolved. I do love their rugs and hope they do have it fixed. But I spoke to Nicole at ext 2068 and received excellent service.

Anonymous said...

My Pottery Barn rug was in the trash when I got home from work. Unfortunately the rug was gone by the time I found this website and that is what the company would like to happen. This is an item they clearly know has a problem and refuse to issue a recall for financial issues. If 40,000 people have visited this web site and the average sale price of their rug was $300.00 that values the damages at $12,000,000.00. On average this would represent 2% of the market of smelly rugs Pottery Barn has in its customers’ homes. That values the market value of defective rugs at $600,000,000.00. Pottery Barn has large legal exposures to this issue. I would recomend Pottery Barn Address this issue and quit posting on this site how easey it is to return defective merchindise.
Ken Johnson,
Consumer Protection Agency
Washington DC

Anonymous said...

We also trashed our smelly pottery barn rug. my wife wanted to go back and but another one. Thanks for the info and we will buy our next rug from crate & barrel. The have a blog with product reviews and it makes me feel mr comfortable.

Anonymous said...

Great Blog, Thanks McDonald Boston
Pottery Barn is recalling cribs that cause tangible harm to children. The India tufted rugs that produce off gasses appears to cause lung damage to my child is a little less noticeable. Thanks Pottery Barn I am sure a smokestack is my child’s room would be ok also. My child has been having lung issues and when we took the Pottery Barn rug out of the room the problem seems to have stopped. Would the staff at Pottery Barn put this crap in their child’s room? Dick McDonald Boston

Anonymous said...

Just returned two rugs to the local PB. One had been rolled up (it started smelling a couple of years ago) and the other just started reeking this year - we'd had both for over four years. Had hoped that they were not both defective but when I started getting headaches it was time to dispose of them.

I am glad I came across this link as it gave me the motivation to contact PB - they told me to bring it into the store. The manager first offered me a replacement rug, then when I demurred, offered store credit. We received full credit for the one that we had a receipt for, and current price for the other.

Glad that we were able to redeem some value from these rugs, but still upset that my children have been playing on these rugs for years. At least they are out of my house and not outgassing any more.

Home said...

I have rugs from Restoration Hardware, and they stink too. The smell started three years or so after I purchased the rugs at an outlet event. I put the worst of the rugs in the sun today, and my whole family was astonished at how far the smell traveled outside! It's awful. For years I've been sprinkling baking soda, vacuuming like maniac, and blaming the dog. I contacted Restoration Hardware, but they report no other problems--frustrating. I'll keep baking them in the sun to see if it helps, but I'm so frustrated. I'll never buy a rug from Restoration Hardware again. It's a shame. They fibers seem perfect; the color never faded. They just stink.

Anonymous said...

HERE IS A LINK TO DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT. CONTACT CONSUMER SAFETY, FILE A REPORT AS I DID.

http://www.saferproducts.gov/Default.aspx

Contact person, call Mary at 301 504-7586 She is the person at consumer affairs I spoke with about my 5-6 year old Pottery barn rug. I am having my tested for chloradane, a pesticide that was band from the USA in the 70's, but last for over 40 years! (the smell too).

Heather said...

Just FYI - I took my rug back to Pottery Barn after talking with the district manager and they gave us full credit for the rug which I purchased in 2006. In speaking with the store and the catalog I got no where, I called the customer relations number listed above and that is how I was able to get this resolved. Thank you to all who posted this information. 6/27/11

Charisa said...

Thanks for posting Heather!

I'm not surprised that you didn't get any help when just dealing with the store. When I went through the process myself, I found the customer relations super helpful and when I went to the actual store to return the rug, the store manager was very displeased. She made a couple comments about the rug being fine and that's just normal for rugs to smell that way. I didn't add any fuel to her fire, smiled, and happily walked away with my full refund as well.

So glad you took action! :)

Anonymous said...

Could you tell me what the back of your smelly Persian-style PB rug looks like? Specifically, do you actually see the latex backing , or is it covered by a cotton scrim, like this: http://regalfabriccare.com/2010/03/my-world-is-coming-unglued

Charisa said...

It looks like mine was covered in the "cotton scrim". At the time when I returned mine (about 5 years old at that point) it was not breaking down and shown no wear and tear whatsoever. The rug looked to be in perfect condition - except for the horrible smell.

Anonymous said...

Hm, interesting. I was told today by the store manager that the only problem rugs are those woth visible latex backing, no cotton or canvas cover like mine. I poked a hole in the canvas, and it's all white powder/sand, which also flies out when the rug is shaken or just put on hardwood floors. Her take was that the bad smell is due to wet wool from some spilled liquids. To me it smells like rubber, an extremely strong smell. The whole yard stank when I had it outside. I'm not sure if I'm imagining things, but just having the rug in the car made me cough and gave me a headache.

Charisa said...

I've heard that so often - that the smell is from liquids being spilled on the rug or just overall "dirty" conditions due to lack of cleaning and it makes me furious.

When we packed our rug up to take back the smell in the car for the 25 minute ride was HORRIBLE. I hated that I had to have my kids in the car for that trip. It's toxic.

Were you able to return yours for store credit at least?

Anonymous said...

This is also a problem with Stinky restoration hardware rugs, although they refuse to do anything about it without a receipt. So DO NOT buy a restoration hardware stinky rug thinking it will just fade away - it won't!

Anonymous said...

This is ridiculous - I was just googling smelly restoration hardware rugs and this site came up. I thought since the restoration hardware reviews seemed positive that I was making an educated choice, but I guess not. i urge everyone to contact the CPSC at
http://www.cpsc.gov/talk.html
to report ANY company that has not recalled these rugs. Maybe if enough of us speak up there will be changes made.

Beth said...

9-22-11
Thank you for all the very helpful comments. I had a PB 8x10 wool rug bought in 2005 after a google search & finding this site I realized the problem with my rug smelling like burnt rubber was the latex backing. PB took my smelly rug back even thought I bought it in a different state & it was 6 years old! the store where I made the original purchase was extremely helpful & set it up so I could take my old rug to my local store & get a credit & then purchase the same rug (that is now made with different backing) I am so pleased with the customer service! I know there are not may companies out there that would take back a rug after 6 years!

OCmom said...

WOW! I just bought an 8x10 PB rug through Craigslist yesterday. They had mentioned a "wooly" smell and suggested I could get it cleaned. It was in perfect condition otherwise, and a pattern I've been eyeing for years, so I wasn't complaining...until we got it home. It seems the longer it sat in our living room, the stronger the smell got. I started looking online for cleaning methods for "smelly rugs" and found this site. THANK YOU FOR THIS SITE!!

I called my local PB 10 minutes ago and asked to speak to the manager. She was on the phone so the sales person asked for my name and number so she could call me back. I mentioned I had a rug that has developed a strong odor, and that I understand it is a known problem. She acknowledged she was familiar with the problem, and said her manager would call me back. Not 5 minutes later the saleswoman called back saying she had talked to her manager and it's no problem to bring the rug back for a store credit or exchange (if I found something at the time I brought it in). No question of when or where I purchased it, or if I had a receipt. They could not have been more accommodating. Even told me to call before coming in so a stock guy could meet me and carry the rug for me.

I was concerned because I did not have a receipt, nor did I purchase it at PB, but it is their rug, and has their sticker on it. It is defective, and I am not getting cash back, only exchanging it for a like item, so I feel it's fair. I will be passing this info along to the person I bought the rug from, as she did have another PB rug, though I don't know if it had the same odor.

Orange County, CA 11/24/11

Charisa said...

OCmom, I'm glad my site helped you out! That's pretty impressive on PB's behalf that they're stepping up even when you didn't even buy it directly from them. I'm always impressed with their customer service. That's one of the main reasons that I continue to purchase items from them. When there's a mistake on their part they fix the problem.

Charisa said...

OCmom, I'm glad my site helped you out! That's pretty impressive on PB's behalf that they're stepping up even when you didn't even buy it directly from them. I'm always impressed with their customer service. That's one of the main reasons that I continue to purchase items from them. When there's a mistake on their part they fix the problem.

Anonymous said...

I just discovered last night that the source of our horrible bedroom odor was from 2 of this type rugs purchased from TJ Max about 3 years ago. I have CPOD and my health has deteriorated during to the point of total disability over the last two years. Over the last few months it has gotten to the point that my nebulizer has virtually no effect & the doctors are baffled. I now believe the problem is definately these rugs. Hopefully, now that they are gone I will improve.

Anonymous said...

R and R

My husband and I have been going crazy for 1 1/2 years trying to figure out where the odor was coming from in our vacation condo. Because our LR,DR and kit.are one big "great room" and we had 2 PB rugs in the room we could not tell what the source of the odor was. Finally after spending $3,OOO on air vent cleaning and having our whole heating system redone without relief, we decided to take the rugs out and put them in the bathroom.

The bathroom stunk and the other rooms were better. We went back to the store and when we mentioned the problem and right away they sent the manager. She knew right away what the problem was, and she agreed to give us a store credit. When we could not find any other rugs, she gave us credit card credit for full amount.

It would seem that a store such as Pottery Barn would have a list of customers who bought these rugs. Notifying them would have been the right thing to do, avoiding problems, expenses and most of all continued health problems. I guess Pottery Barn didn't want to open that gate.

The rugs were purchased in 2006. Now we realize that this a huge problem. I have developed severe allergies in past few years. What about my 4 grandchildren who come visit regularly? What about our $3,000?? Is there a class action suit??

Anonymous said...

R and R

My husband and I have been going crazy for 1 1/2 years trying to figure out where the odor was coming from in our vacation condo. Because our LR,DR and kit.are one big "great room" and we had 2 PB rugs in the room we could not tell what the source of the odor was. Finally after spending $3,OOO on air vent cleaning and having our whole heating system redone without relief, we decided to take the rugs out and put them in the bathroom.

The bathroom stunk and the other rooms were better. We went back to the store and when we mentioned the problem and right away they sent the manager. She knew right away what the problem was, and she agreed to give us a store credit. When we could not find any other rugs, she gave us credit card credit for full amount.

It would seem that a store such as Pottery Barn would have a list of customers who bought these rugs. Notifying them would have been the right thing to do, avoiding problems, expenses and most of all continued health problems. I guess Pottery Barn didn't want to open that gate.

The rugs were purchased in 2006. Now we realize that this a huge problem. I have developed severe allergies in past few years. What about my 4 grandchildren who come visit regularly? What about our $3,000?? Is there a class action suit??

Vivian Elliott, Gainesville FL said...

I just received five area rugs from Pottery Barn.
At least two were infested with MITES!!!
I am returning them but dealing with the mites is astronomical.
I have to have them packed up (hire someone) clean daily everything in my home with bleach and windex.
bath in Lysterine to get them off of me.
Cannot sleep in my home. Had to move out and I still don't know if I will be able to live there!!!
DO NOT BUY RUGS from POTTERY BARN or any store that are made in INDIA!!!!!! BEWARE!!! you could find yourself in a horrible situation.

Anonymous said...

OK folks I have solved the problem.
I live in an upscale neighborhood.
My neighbors were moving and put a beautiful almost new wool rug Pottery Barn 6234728 8F X 10F on the street as they were moving. I went to look at it, it was brand new. Not a spot or stain on it. Beautiful color and pattern. I could not figure out why they threw it on the street for trash pickup. Got it home, I too noticed the funky odor (burned rubber/chemical/hay smell), my dog noticed it too and was attracted to it. There is a surgeon on my street that is from India. I asked him to come by and tell me what he though the odor was. He took one sniff, smiled, and said " That's Curry. We use it in all our foods. Everything we have smells like that. The factories smell like that, the homes smell like that. Nothing to worry about".
OK. I trust him, but I do have curry spice in my spice cabinet, I smelled the rug, then smelled the Curry - EXACT SAME SMELL. It will not harm you. FYI - Curry is an incredible spice and has all kinds of anti cancer and heart benefits and is very good for you.
You can mist the rug with a pump sprayer and a light detergent/water mix, put it in the sun to dry for day, the odor will be gone.
IT IS NOT HARMFUL.
Me? I got a $600.00 brand new rug for free and it now smells fresh and clean. No joke.

Charisa said...

Anon, I'm glad that worked for you!

However, I can assure you that it was not curry that made my rug smell. I'm well aware of curry and know that it can leave a lingering smell.

Thanks for the tip though. Maybe someone else will find it useful.

Anonymous said...

I was just about to throw my PB carpet out today due to the smell. Same story as all the rest...smelled like burning rubber...didn't know where it was coming from...finally figured it out.Nothing worked. I decided to look online today to see if there were any ideas and came across this information. I called PB immediatley in Pleasanton, CA. I have a new carpet the same day. Great customer service.

Anonymous said...

My wife and I recently moved into my parents home and over the course of two years we began to notice a smell which grew worse and worse. Our bedroom is in a walk-out basement and we began to wonder if the smell was mold related. We ran a dehumidifier non-stop but it didn't help. I used an ozone generator and it would help only while it was running but after a few minutes the smell would be back. To me it didn't smell like rubber as much as urine. I began to think my dog had been using the rug unbenownst to us! My wife insisted the smell was coming from the rug, I assumed the rug had simply absorbed the prevailing odor until I finally got down on my hands and knees and we almost knocked over from the smell. I said, "OMG, we've got to get this thing out of the house right now!" I took it out in my underwear and I took the smell with it. Within minutes after opening windows and airing it out, the smell disapated. Over the past year I notices that I would wheeze at night and again, I thought this might have been related to humidity or mold in the lower level. No I highly suspect this was from this rug. I called PB and they are sending a return kit. I really wonder what kind of toxic material was outgasing? I noticed another rug with the same type of backing made by "obeetee" has the same smell only less strong. I suspect this rug will begin to smell more and more over time so my next step will be trying to return that as well... Needless to say, thank goodness for this site and WHY THE HECK has PB not recalled this rug and notified buyers of this particular manufacturing run???!!!

Anonymous said...

I paid BIG MONEY for a 8 x 10 oriental rug from Pottery Barn. 3 days later noticed a stale smoke type odor when I walked into the room. I worked full time and was caring for a sick relative so I had no time to take drive 60 miles to take it back. Tried everything I to remedy the smell and eventually threw it away because I did not feel it honest to sell it to anyone. Go into any Pottery barn store and smell their oriental type rugs and you will smell it. What's odd is the odor got worse when the room temp got above 70!

lanayaguttman said...

I am a mother of two baby girls who play on PB rugs... I need to know. Do all the Pottery Barn Indian Tufted Rugs have this "bad latex" or "bad backing" in them? I accidentally stumbled upon this blog - I have no "smelly rug issues" yet, but I do have two Pottery Barn Indian Tufted Rugs, one "Medallion" made in 9/2010 and one "Samson" made in 5/2006. They have the cotton scrim backing, which I poked a hole in and the actual rug backing appears to be mostly intact. BUT, I vacuum these rugs twice/week (at least) and there is a peculiarly large amount of white dust that I collect in my vacuum canister. I am very disturbed by all the above reports of other PB customers' experiences with these tufted wool rugs because I have two baby girls under 15 months that play on these rugs! One of the rugs I got specifically so my child wouldn't have to play on a hard, cold wood floor. Are they toxic even though no smell has developed yet? Is the large amount of white powder I collect in my vacuum the deteriorating latex backing everyone is talking about? Thanks for everyone's input!!

Charisa said...

Hello Lanaya, thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment.

My rug never left a white powder - it just smelled to high heavens. Could it possibly be dust and dander that falls to the floor and gets trapped in the rug? I'm always surprised to see the amount of fine dust in my canister after vacuuming carpet, but it's more of a gray color.

If you are concerned about your rugs I would do more research and talk to your local PB.

Let us know!

 

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