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Inhaling Muriatic Acid

We are renovating apartments. Searching through our shop cabinets, my curiosity spied a wine bottle which my husband didn't label, in which he had poured his last amounts of muratic acid. Not knowing the contents, I popped the cork and took a guarded smell. When I could tell it wasn't wine (darn it!) I quickly removed it from my nose. I didn't feel bad at all initially, luckily. Stupid me, stupid him, but what are possible effects and is there any treatment? It's been several days since this occured.

Mary Lou Roman
Own apartments - Chesapeake, Virginia

It's an acid, it's corrosive, and it's not good for you or your apartment. But if you're feeling okay, I think you are. Acid is not a cumulative poison and thousands of industrial workers smell hydrochloric acid every day.

Ted Mooney,
Ted Mooney, P.E.
Striving to live Aloha - Pine Beach, New Jersey

Exactly what Ted has said is about the long and short of it. That was probably not a very pleasant odor,but I work with HCl everyday, I always have a respirator on, but every now and then I get a good smell of it,and I have never had any side effects, and I've been playing with these nasty chemicals for 13 years now. As for haveing that stuff in your house....Probably NOT a good idea.

Brian C. Gaylets
McKinney Products/Assa-Abloy - Scranton, Pennsylvania, U.S.A.


Purchased some muratic acid for our new pool, not knowing if it smelled like anything. I took a wiff of it. WOOSH! ... Is how I felt. Kind of like getting high for a sec, but not a good high.

Today 2 weeks later, my head has been feeling woozy. Can this be affecting me now?

I am a little worried. Should I think it is this?

I know here in Austin, Texas the weather is changing alot and there is allot of allergies in the air. Should I think its the muratic acid catching up to me, or could I just have THE COUGH/COLD bug? Thanks for any answers.

Mike Hill
retail - Austin, Texas

To the previous poster and the OP as well:

You'll be fine. HCL/Muriatic Acid will give you immediate side effects, nothing compounding. Breathing in an acid such as Muriatic acid effectively does the same thing to your insides as pouring it on your skin does. It will immediately absorb into the tissue and damage it. Breathing in the fumes however will not hurt you badly.

Ian Roche
- Arlington, Virginia

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