House smells like cigarette, but you do not smoke! Do not be distraught. In the guide below, I will take you through various ways of eliminating that cigarette smell from your house for a fresher atmosphere.
Persistent cigarette smell is not only offensive but also very dangerous to the health of a human being.
Tobacco remains have been linked to several health issues such as cancer, pulmonary disease, etc. nevertheless, there are endless reasons as to why one needs to get rid of the cigarette smell in their home.
If no one in your house smokes, then the source of cigarette smell is likely coming from a second-hand source (SHS), i.e., smoking is taking place near your home or third-hand source (THS) where tobacco residues were left behind after smoking taking place.
Cigarette smell can be overpowering to the extent that it infiltrates to almost anything in your houses such as window curtains, carpets, clothes, and even furniture, among other household items. Amazingly the smell can be everywhere!
11 Easy Fixes For a House That Smells Like Cigarette.
If your house smells like cigarette, but you do not smoke? Do not worry.
Below are some of the fixes you can use to get rid of the cigarette smell in your house.
Do not allow the unpleasant cigarette smell to contaminate the quality of your indoor air.
Depending on the severity, you can employ several of the below fixes to get rid of the smell.
1. Allow Air Circulation In The Entire House
The obvious and the first thing you should do is to open the doors and windows for as long as you can.
Keep all the windows and doors open, even when doing the cleaning of the house.
If there are any ceilings fans available, turn them on and place some portable ones near the window to blow the stale air out.
Besides, you can place some portable fans outside the window to blow some clean air inside the house as well.
2. Use Of Air Purifiers And Dehumidifiers
A modest air purifier is an investment worth considering.
Air purifiers with HEPA(high-efficiency particulate air) can help in removing the air molecules, causing the odor.
The purifiers help by sucking up dust and air particles. One such HEPA air purifier is the Levoit air purifier.
Besides, it is always advisable to replace your HVAC filters every 2-3 months.
Also, make sure to check the ducts for debris and other dust particles that may contain smoke molecules, which in return may be contaminating the air traveling back to your home.
On the other hand, you may as well need to use a dehumidifier.
A dehumidifier helps to remove surplus moisture in wet air by cooling it down since damp air tends to hold smells for longer, and it gives a conducive environment for molds to grow.
One such recommended dehumidifier is hOmelabs.
3. Strategically Place Bowls Of Charcoals Or Baking Soda To Absorb The Smell
Charcoal is an effective and yet nontoxic cleanser widely used for various purposes ranging from detoxifying the body, purifying bad tastes from the water, and filtering the air.
Charcoal has an astonishing ability to absorb pollutants and strong smells, such as that of a cigarette.
Both the activated charcoals as well as the ordinary grilling briquettes are effective at absorbing the undesirable cigarette smoke smell.
Although the majority of users vow for the activated charcoal because of its porosity, regular charcoal can also be grounded to form a powder to increase its potency.
If all the smell has not cleared as you wanted, just dump the old and replace it with a new one.
For the furniture and items like mattresses, baking soda will come in handy as the best tool for freshening up the same.
Sprinkle the baking soda to all the furniture and allow it to sit for about an hour.
After an hour or so, you can go ahead and vacuum all the powder up.
4. Replace Or Wash Window Hangings
Window hangings such as curtains, drapes, or even blinds are notorious for soaking up unwanted smells.
For curtains and drapes made of fabric, toss them into a washing machine, take them to the dry cleaner, or even replace them for a fresher feel.
For the blinds, you can soak them for about 15 minutes or so in a mixture of water and vinegar, then thoroughly scrub them and hang them to dry.
Last and not least, clean the windows themselves thoroughly.
Spray the surfaces of the window with vinegar and wipe clean.
You can repeat the processes up to 3 times or till you are satisfied.
5. Make Clean Or Replace The Carpets And Rugs
Carpets and rugs are some of the legendary items in the house known to absorb the unwanted smell.
It is because of this reason; this step gives many owners of homes a headache.
No matter how careful a tenant is, carpets eventually will still suck up all tiny and invisible particles of cigarette smoke over time.
The first and most effortless approach to this would be the use of baking soda.
Sprinkle the powder all over your carpet and let it sit for at least an hour before you vacuum it.
If the powder trick does not work, you may need to hire professionals to come and steam clean the carpet.
If at the end of all both solutions do not work, it is quite unfortunate there is no other solution other than replacing your carpet or rug.
6. Freshen Cabinets, House Fixtures, And Clean All Clothes And Linens
It is with no doubt cigarette smoke can very easily find its way into closed cabinets and cloth wardrobes, and thus these items should not be ignored during cleanup.
As for the cabinets, a mixture of either bleach or vinegar with water and a soft cloth can be used to clean.
If need be, you can even go ahead and use a TSP mixture.
TSP is a strong heavy-duty cleaning agent used to remove stains in cupboards and light fixtures clogged with tar.
After using TSP, ensure to rinse the chemical with a wet rag.
If you have ever smelled clothes owned by a smoker am sure you can attest to the fact that fabrics attract odors.
Therefore all materials should be well cleaned even though they may seem clean and free of the smell.
The cloths would have probably absorbed the odors from the closed cabinets and wardrobes.
Once cleaned, please store them somewhere else until you finish cleaning the house to satisfaction.
7. Cleaning Of Walls
Cleaning of the wall is a bit easy if you have items like a long broom that extends, clean water, and a sponge.
Some stains may require some TSP as well. Make sure you soak your mop into the TSP mixture and scrub the wall from bottom up.
The bottom-up approach helps lessen the streaking of the wall.
After you finish scrubbing, take a sponge soak in water and rinse off from up to bottom.
Change the water as frequently as you can to avoid transferring dirt back to the wall.
You can repeat the process 2-3 times until the entire odor cleared.
8. Prime And Repaint Your Walls And Ceilings.
Despite all the hard work of cleaning the walls and the ceiling of your house, in some instances, you may still smell a slight odor lingering around your home.
If you are willing to go the extra mile, you can always apply an odor-blocking primer purposely to stop the odors and the stains from bleeding through the paint color.
One of the recommended odor-blocking primers is the Zinsser Series 307648.
After the primer, you can now go ahead and apply any paint of your liking to your walls and ceiling.
A clean and dry wall makes the paint stick better.
9. Cleaning And Replacing Of Light Bulbs, Air And Furnace Filters.
Just like scent diffusers, when switched on, the light bulbs may diffuse remnants of nicotine throughout your house.
Your day’s work and effort of cleaning an entire house can be reduced to zero if you do not address the dirty air filters in your home.
Smoke molecules and other dirt particles can always cling on air ducts for so long, even if there is no one smoking in the house currently.
The particles will then be blown back into your home once the air conditioners are on.
If the ducts are not easily accessible for you to clean them, it is always ideal to source qualified personnel to assist you.
As for the filters, if they are not severely damaged, you can always soak them in a TSP solution or diluted bleach for an hour or so, scrub them off all the visible dirt, rinse with clean water and return them.
On the other hand, if they are worse off or too worn out, it is always good to replace them.
10. Lastly, Clean The Floor.
If your floor is hardwood made, please choose a suitable cleaner which will not damage your floor.
Vinegar is not a choice for cleaning such floors.
Ensure to scrub both the door frames and baseboards and draining any excess water which may damage the wood.
11. Deodorize Your House.
There are several items that you can use to absorb some last bits of unwanted smell after you are done with the cleaning.
By strategically placing a few bowls of them inside your house will help in keeping your home smelling clean and fresh.
They include coffee, baking soda, activated charcoal, and vinegar.
Final Thoughts on House Smells Like Cigarette, But We Do Not Smoke
If your house smells like cigarette smoke and yet no one smokes, it is high time you thought of SHS (Second-Hand Smoke) or THS (Third-Hand Smoke).
Smoke molecules can hang on to cloths, filters, furniture, wall paints for so long even after the smoker stopped smoking.
Nevertheless, do not let the odor discourage you from enjoying the ambiance of your house.
The above simple techniques, when employed well, can sort out on such issues in the long run.