Odors From Cooking Chinese Food

I am a university student and this year I have two foreign students from China living with me. Their food has a very strong smell, and they cook 3 times a day, sometimes more.

I clean twice a week, scrub every surface I can with either Mr. Clean or bleach and water, and the house smells fresh again. As soon as they cook again though, the entire house reeks to the point that its making me sick.


I've tried bowls of vinegar, baking soda, Febreze, air fresheners, boiling water and cinnamon and vinegar. They all help but they do not kill the odor, and I need something that will deodorize all day long. I'm at the end of my rope, and cannot find a solution, any ideas?

Candice from Windsor, ONT, Canada

October 13, 20050 found this helpful

My grandmother would always burn a candle (scented or unscented, didn't matter) in the room when cooking fish. She said it was to help get rid of the smell (after cooking). I don't know how effective it was since asian cooking smells don't bother me.

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October 13, 20050 found this helpful

There must not be an exhaust fan above the stove?That should be on "high" if there is one. If not, then improvise one. A fan by a window , with another window slightly open to create a cross draft, should help. Of course, with winter coming, it might get chilly!

Is moving out of the picture? It sounds like the tension of the situation could be really upsetting.

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October 13, 20050 found this helpful

The smell is from grease. Tiny droplets of it have infiltered your whole house, the walls, the drapes, your clothing, the bedding, etc. The problem with frying foods indoors is that the grease goes rancid after attaching itself to various surfaces. Not very pleasant. Washing soda and water will cut the grease from most surfaces. It may be hard to clean your curtains, bedspread, etc. as often as is necessary to stay ahead of this problem. I agree with the person here who suggested moving. I too cannot tolerate the smell of grease in the house!

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October 13, 20050 found this helpful

There is an air freshener I purchased at Meijer. It was around $3.50. It is orange scented and has charcoal in it which absorbs odors. It is a round plastic bowl. White in color. You just peel off the top and after about a month the gel inside dries up. I use them in closets and have 1 in my car. They are pretty strong scented. It was on the top shelf with the other air freshners.

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October 14, 20050 found this helpful

Buy an overpriced air cleaner and use it in the kitchen. Can the roomies cook on a patio?

A real estate agent made the same comment to me years ago about grease infiltrating every nook and cranny of the house.

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October 15, 20051 found this helpful

Try boiling vinegar on the stove. You can use straight vinegar or add some water. If it's grease on the walls, then you need to spray the walls with vinegar and wipe.

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Anonymous Flag
February 20, 20160 found this helpful

Move them out.

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