How do I clean white PVC window surrounds? It looks like nicotine stains. Thanks.
We bought a camper from a chain smoker, and there is hope. I used Lysol basin, Tub & Tile cleaner. Spray it in an area that won't be noticed to see how well it will clean for you, wipe off with a damp cloth or sponge. When I started cleaning / spraying I sprayed all wipe-able surfaces (not fabric), then rinsed. Oh, I would only do a small section at a time ( 4 ft X 4 ft ). The nicotine was so bad in the camper it ran down the walls in "streams", but it worked. You can also use KILZ paint / primer, this will cover / hide odors. Good luck.
I normally would not recommend this because I have lung damage (Emphysema) from being around and using too many assorted chemicals since I was a child but the foaming Lysol tub and tile spray will definitely work to remove the nicotine. But, please, be sure to have really good ventilation and a mask on when using and only use for occasions like this where you really, really need to get something like nicotine stains and odor to be gone.
To show you just how many dangerous chemicals are in that product (and most other manufactured strong cleaning products as well) just cut a couple of live leaves off of a plant, spray them lightly and see what happens to them in less than two minutes. :-( Since your mum has been a long time smoker I recommend you ask her to go to lunch with a friend or, at least, also wear a mask while you're doing the cleaning to help save further damage to her lungs.
Lora, Just one word, Awesome. I came across this cleaner several years ago while working in retail and have not bought a different cleaner since. I use it for just about everything but it's fantastic for getting nicotine off anything. Just spray and you will literally see the nicotine drip off. The best part is you can find it at Dollar Tree. The name is Awesome and it truly lives up to it's name!
I've used Trisodium Phosphate (TSP) in the past, and it works like a charm. Read all directions, and use gloves. Will also clean grease off your stove and hood really well! It's available at hardware stores, usually in the paint dept.
I cleaned windows today and had the same stain on the PVC surrounds around the windows. I used straight vinegar in a spray bottle. Works really well.
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We have purchased a small house and the previous owner was a heavy smoker. I am trying to remove the stains from the window frames (newer windows that tilt in for cleaning). I am not trying to remove all the stains from the walls. I will be painting with paint that has an odor block, primer, and color. The other problem is that I am asthmatic. Any suggestions would be appreciated!
By Jane J from Cherokee, IA
Although I haven't used such for the particular circumstance you described, the "Mr. Clean Eraser" sponge-like cleaning helpers are amazing for removing all kinds of stuff from solid surfaces. You can buy a small package of 4 for only a few dollars and if they don't work for this particular problem, they will work on all kinds of other household messes so you won't be wasting the money spent. Simply rinse and wring them out and go to work, keep rinsing and wringing out as necessary to tackle a cleaning project. They eventually wear themselves down and then you can toss them.
Of course every case of asthma is different, but I have a mild condition and these "Mr. Clean Erasers" cause me no problems. As well, they are not scented either, something for those that have chemical allergies (like me) to consider, as well. Good luck! (11/15/2010)
Use soap, dishwashing liquid is good. Lather it up well and you will see the soap turn brown. Rinse and keep doing it until the brown goes away. Then clean with window cleaner to shine the glass and take away any soap smears. It is not easy to get rid of nicotine built up from years of smoking. (11/16/2010)
Use Lysol Basin Tub and Tile cleaner. We bought a camper that had been owned by a chain smoker, the camper was awful. (I am asthmatic also.) I sprayed the walls down (actually soaked them), then wiped them down with paper towels. I feel certain it would work with glass. You might have to wear a mask, make sure the vents and windows are open for ventilation.
Good luck. (11/16/2010)
Does anyone know how to clean very heavy nicotine stains and drips off of vinyl windows? It is almost like it is part of the vinyl now. I would appreciate any type of advice. Thank you very much in advance!
By Kimberly from St Louis, MO
Try Glass Plus. (12/27/2010)
First you must wash several times with hot soap and water. You can shine later on with window cleaner, but it takes hot water and Dawn liquid several times to start with. Wash until the cloth (not paper towel) comes out clean. (12/29/2010)
Try 20 Mule Borax, in the detergent aisle (app. $5 for a large box). Dilute as per directions and also put some dry in a small container (i.e old yogurt tub). Dampen a sponge/cloth in the borax/water mix and squeeze almost dry and dip into dry borax, works like a miracle. (12/29/2010)
Scrub it with bleach water! Or put some ammonia in some clear water and scrub it with that. (12/29/2010)