Assuming no furniture, Try washing all the hard surfaces and shampooing the
rug first, then wash or change the curtains, if it still smells, air out for
a week then paint if all else fails. It will eventually fade but that could
You didn't mention whether you were talking about carpets, or just hard
surfaces. If carpets, I'd hire a professional service to clean them. They
can take a while to dry, so it's best done when the heat's running
regularly, or when you can open the windows on a dry day.
For hard surfaces, you may have to do some scrubbing. Smoke sticks to walls,
and seems to become almost resinous. A neighbor of mine moved into a house
previously owned by a smoker, and before he could get paint to adhere
correctly, he had to scrub the hell out of the walls. At the time, there was
a product called TSP, made for this type of thing. It was high in
phosphates, which are now banned in some (maybe all?) states. If I recall,
some people in this newsgroup have commented that the product might not be
as effective as it used to be.
Get rid of everything "soft' that you can. Carpets, drapes, etc.
If the carpet is too good to tear out, then have it professionally
Wash walls and flat ceilings with tsp and repaint.
Consider using a steamer to loosen up caked on nicotine.
Repaint textured ceilings.
Toss all the soft stuff including carpeting etc, scrub everything.
PAINT EVERYTHING with Bin or KILZ to seal in the odor, then paint
everything with regular paint.
scrub floors if they are hardwood and going to be carpeted sand lightly
then outdoor polyurethane all the hardwood, or concrete or whatever
flooring thats paintable.
formula 409 works pretty good on hard surfaces like vinyl window
you will have to have the forced air heat ducts and furnace
professionally cleaned and deodorized.
this procedure is the same used for fire damaged homes or those with
sounds like lots of work, if you dont do it this way the odor will
reappear anytime the weather turns warm and moist.
It really doesnt remove the odor you cant as it permanetes eveything
like walls, what you must do is seal it in walls and stuff.
if your despeate to keep the carpet, lift it all and take to a local
company that cleans carpet putting it thru a bath. big pricey project.
then replace padding the smell is in there too.
I have done this more than once YUK JOB, once for smoke oncce for
Both homes smell fine today you would never know it happened
Flair ionozer by Ecoquest. Had a fire in my son's room- smoldering
mattress smell would gag you. My brother-in-law brought over his Flair
ionozer that he paid $350 for. 2 days later the room smelled like a
Went to ebay & bought one for about $150.
These are *real* ionizers, not the toy [ionic breeze] that you see on
TV all the time. [another family member bought one of those to get rid
of ciggarette smell and it didn't work for her]
The literature says it will kill mold & mildew but I haven't had a
chance to test that.
Get an old ...or new for about 35.00...oil burner transformer....take
wires from the two high voltage terminals and jam both leads into a
large ball of loosly crinkled aluminum foil....40.00 ozone generator
that does the same thing as an ionizer......it generates ozone which is
a disenfectant and deodorizer.
ozone is harmfull to breathe in large amounts so what you must do is a
room at a time...with a window open and the doors closed.
The oil burner transformer is a current limited device so jamming the
two high voltage leads into a wad of timfoil wont "short" the
I wouldnt let it run more than an hour or so continuous though as it
will heat up and might begin breaking down the windings.....but you
could put it on a timer.....or run it while working in other parts of
Clean or replace drapes. Steam clean carpets. Spread plenty of baking soda
on carpets and let sit for a day or two to absorb smell. Gently wash walls.
Gently wash ceiling or paint. Let the room air out for a few days.
We washed the drapes, walls, and linens in a heavy smoker's bedroom. We
also spread a bunch of baking soda on the carpet and let it sit for a couple
days before vacuuming. After airing out the room for a few days, there was
no hint of smoke smell.
The biggest culprits were the drapes, which reeked, the carpet, which
smelled funky, and the linens, which just smelled smokey.
Tobacco odor can be very difficult to remove. There are ozone
generators that work well, but it is bet to run these units while the
house is vacant. Remove/replace carpeting, carpet padding and prime
(Kiltz)/paint all walls and ceilings.
There are companies which specialize in cleaning up smoke damaged houses
other unusual horrors. The OP's fire department would certainly have
suggestions. If the job seems enormous, it might be worth hiring one of
these firms. Some of them work miracles.
I'd put my money on Fabreze. The stuff really works
I accidently cremated two ham hocks while making split pea soup. I put
the pan on full high burner for about an hour (instead of turning it
off as I had intended)
When I returned to the house after a one hour walk, the house was
filled with thick smoke (actually just from the ceiling to about waist
Took about an hour to empty the house with fans. The house reeked of a
sick, sweet burned smell............it was nasty!
I had the drapes cleaned, I wiped down the walls & floors (tile) w/
TSP a couple fo times
I sprayed Fabreze on all of the fabric items (carpet, furniture,
pillows, etc) that I didn't want to replace or pay to have cleaned.
The smoke really only got into about half the house (kitchen, family,
dining & living rooms)
I used several (many) bottles of the stuff but after a rew months the
smell was COMPLETELY gone (as was the reminder of my attempt to "burn
down the house")
I'm sold on the stuff, it really worked for me.
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