Cleaning Smoke Off Walls

Kitchen fires, candles and other occurrences can leave smoke residue on your walls. This is a guide about cleaning smoke off walls.
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June 4, 2015 Flag
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How do I clean smoke from walls after a kitchen fire?

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June 5, 20152 found this helpful
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I can tell you how I would do it. First, I would get a fan large enough to keep the area well ventilated, place it where it is most effective and turn it on. Next, I would fill a large, clean, empty spray bottle with household ammonia. Add nothing to the ammonia, certainly not bleach. Any type of cleanser added would just cause you to have to rinse and would not improve the effectiveness of the ammonia.

With plenty of clean rags handy, start spraying the ammonia at the bottom most area of smoke damage. You will quickly learn just how much to spray and how many seconds to wait before wiping. It needs to stay on the wall 2-3 seconds, but not long enough to run down the wall.

From this point, work your way up the wall, either rinsing your rag in clear water often or switching to an unused one. How much ammonia, time and labor is involved depends on the amount of damage.

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Anonymous Flag
April 12, 20160 found this helpful

OXY-CLEAN and elbow grease!

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March 15, 2005 Flag
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Hello, Can some one help me? I have a smoke stained wall. Is there any thing that can get it out?

Thanks,

raven46588

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March 16, 20050 found this helpful
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Paint it with KILZ. If you paint it with anything else, the nicotine will bleed through the paint. You can even ask the paint department/store to tint it the color you prefer the wall to be.

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October 21, 20080 found this helpful
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You have to use oil based Kilz, not the latex. The stain will bleed through the latex Kilz. I learned this the hard way, after 3 coats of latex.

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March 27, 20050 found this helpful

If you paint your wall and use a really good primer/sealer first,you should have no problem.

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February 19, 20060 found this helpful

If I paint with KILZ would I have to first use a primer or wash walls? This is for smoke from woodburning fireplace.

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March 13, 20060 found this helpful

i smoke and i can not get the smoke stain off my walls

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July 13, 20070 found this helpful

i need some one to give me a idea on what to use to get smoke from a fire off my walls.

please help!

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July 15, 20070 found this helpful

May 27, 2005 Flag
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I recently had a house fire, what is the best way to clean heavy smoke damage on my walls, ceiling and hardwood floors?

Virginia Owens

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May 28, 20050 found this helpful
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If you have insurance, let them hire professionals to do the job. If you have to do this yourself, and can't afford a fire restoration firm to do the cleanup for you, consider purchasing their chemicals. The chemical cleaners used in fire cleanup are a combination degreaser/deodorizer. As a last resort, use a citrus-based all purpose cleaner, preferably something with orange oil in it.

Clean your ceilings, lamp shades and such with dry chemical sponges (your local hardware or walmart may have these) http://www.rhcarpetcleaning.com/en-us/dept_7.html

Walls should be washed from the bottom up. Use the citrus cleaner or professional smoke wash and change water frequently. You may need to wash more than once, but that depends on your products, technique and amount of smoke. You might find sudsy ammonia works well also.

Hardwood floors may require stripping and refinishing.

You don't mention the contents, but the citrus cleaner should work there as well. For laundry, try adding the citrus cleaner to the wash water. If that doesn't work, try a half cup of ammonia.

Good luck

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May 29, 20050 found this helpful
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The primer would be either Kilz or Binz and should be available at most hardware/paint stores, but repainting is not always necessary for smoke damage. These sealant-type primers also help cover mildew.

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June 3, 20050 found this helpful
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1st when cleaning walls and ceilings, with flat paint, dry chemical sponging is performed first. With an eggshell or glossy paint, use spic and span and water, and wipe all ceilings down. Then use Bin Zinser 123 latex paint for a primer, then paint with your final finish coat of paint (might be 2 coats). If you dont clean, before you paint, you are wasting your time and money. Read the paint can labels:)

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May 29, 20050 found this helpful

There is also a special type of primer that can be used on walls that have smoke damage. Using this will enable regular paint to adhere to the walls better. I don't know what the specific name of the product is. I lived in an apartment complex where one apartment had a fire that caused substantial damage. The fire department even had to break through the wall. The complex tried everything, but this primer seemed to work best. It became pointless to attempt to clean the walls, because the scorching had penetrated so much. This stuff is quite smelly -- and probably has some alcohol in it, but if you use several coats of this primer, you will be able to paint on the wall with no trouble again. As for the floors, the previous respondent is quite right. I suspect that you will undoubtedly have to strip the floors and refinish them again. When you go to repaint the place, look for a paint that has some sort of fire retardent properties in it. I know that they are available. If that's not possible, spray your walls, floors and furniture with the substance. There is a product called No Burn available. You can probably find out how to get it by doing a Google search. Also spray beds, mattresses and that sort of thing. In the future, if this ever happens again, it will take a lot longer for anything to burn. Also try to get a hold of some industrial type fans. The fire department often uses these things to rid rooms of the smoke smell, and the lingering layer of smoke that seems to be so pervasive. I wish you luck! And I really feel for you. I lived in an apartment building that burned down in 1983, and all of the residents, myself included, lost virtually everything we owned.

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July 20, 20050 found this helpful

How do I get rid of the stains and the smells

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April 4, 20080 found this helpful

I need some help on repairing our house from a fire and we are just settling with the insurance company but alot of the money is being held and the house has sat for about 16 months with nothing done until Jan of 2007 we have gutted all the rooms where the fire started and need to seal walls to paint and clean everything alot is being thrown away pls any help would be appreciated and where can I buy product to seal and clean and can carpet be cleaned after a fire it was just installed brand new before the fire?

Thank You and God Bless

Sylvia

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February 29, 20160 found this helpful

January 11, 2012 Flag
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Is there an easy to clean candle smoke from walls and ceilings?

By Carol

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January 13, 20120 found this helpful
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Can't help with cleaning, but have two suggestions for prevention in future. When anyone is smoking 1. light a candle nearby, the flames attract the smoke and makes it disappear, and 2. put/leave out a dish or cup of vinegar, it also attracts the smoke, you can tell because it turns black on top, when completely black, time for a new bowl.

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January 14, 20120 found this helpful
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A solution of half vinegar, half water will clean the soot (and nicotine, other stainings) from your walls, and has the bonus value of freshening the air as well. Be sure to wash the ceilings too.

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March 9, 2010 Flag
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How do you get smoke stains off the walls from the fireplace?

By Jenny

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March 13, 20100 found this helpful
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TSP is Tri Sodium Phosphate. It's amazing for cleaning years of smoking off the walls, so it will work for this. Good Luck!

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Anonymous Flag
March 18, 20160 found this helpful
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Muriatic acid is made especially to clean bricks. Use gloves and a mask and keep room ventilated.

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March 9, 2010 Flag
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I am helping clean a 50 year old house that has severe smoke stains from a fireplace. The painted ceiling and walls of the living room are covered in a combination of dust, smoke from the fireplace, and soot. We are currently trying to get it off with sugar soap, but it doesn't seem to be working. The stains have been there for a while as the walls and ceiling haven't been cleaned for a number of years. If anyone has any low cost hints, it would be much appreciated.

Pegs

Answers:

Cleaning Fireplace Smoke Stains off Walls and Ceiling

Tri sodium phosphate otherwise known as TSP can be purchased at any hardware store and should remove smoke stains from your walls. Be sure to wear rubber gloves when applying TSP as this is very caustic.

sewingmamma (07/15/2005)

By sewingmamma

Cleaning Fireplace Smoke Stains off Walls and Ceiling

Use Krud Kleaner available at Home Depot. Easy and effective. Will also clean oil spills on driveways, etc. (07/16/2005)

By ED

Cleaning Fireplace Smoke Stains off Walls and Ceiling

TSP does not work on fireplace smoke stains on painted walls. I tried many options, but found that vinegar worked the best. All of them required a lot of elbow grease. Be prepared for sore shoulders no matter what product you use. Painting is faster.
(01/17/2009)

By Mel

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June 29, 20160 found this helpful
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Muriatic Acid is what you use to clean fireplaces, brick, stone, etc.

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