If you’ve recently moved into a home where the previous owners were smokers, you may be dealing with the lingering smell of cigarettes. Simply masking the smell with air fresheners is not a long-term solution. Luckily, there are effective ways to eliminate cigarette odor from your home.
Here are 8 Basic steps you can take:
1. Air out the house:
Open all windows and doors to let fresh air circulate throughout the space. You can also place portable fans near windows to help blow the smoke smell out of the room. Keep this setup for at least a full day, if not longer.
2. Wash all surfaces and fabrics:
Clean all interior walls, ceilings, floors, and hard surfaces with mild soap or appropriate cleaning products. Don’t forget to clean inside cabinets, drawers, and closets as well. Carpets, upholstered furniture, and mattresses can be disinfected and deodorized using a steam cleaner. Wash or dry-clean your clothing according to instructions.
3. Repaint with odor-blocking paint:
Consider using a product like Killz, which is specifically designed to block cigarette odors trapped in the walls.
4. Try an ozone machine:
Similar to what professionals use to eliminate cigarette odors in cars, ozone machines can be purchased online and work wonders in your home. However, it’s important to read and follow the instructions carefully as ozone machines can be harmful to your health. Make sure all occupants, including pets, leave the house while the machine is operating. Afterward, wear a mask and air out the house before allowing everyone back inside.
5. Use baking soda:
Sprinkle baking soda liberally on rugs, carpets, upholstered furniture, and mattresses. Let it sit overnight or for a few hours, then vacuum it up using an upholstery attachment. You can also place bowls of baking soda around your home to absorb odors in the air.
6. Neutralize with vinegar:
White vinegar is effective in neutralizing odors like cigarette smoke. Add a bit of vinegar to the water you use to wipe surfaces in your home, and include a half-cup of vinegar in your laundry. Leaving bowls of white vinegar around the house overnight can also help absorb odors.
7. Try activated charcoal:
Surprisingly, activated charcoal can absorb cigarette odors. Place bags of activated charcoal throughout your home to clear the smell from the air. Avoid placing charcoal directly on fabric to prevent stains.
8. Change air filters:
Cigarette smoke can clog up air filters in your HVAC system, reducing their effectiveness. Regularly changing the air filters will ensure cleaner air in your home and complement your other efforts to eliminate cigarette smell.