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Removing Cigarette Smoke Odors

Category Odors
The odor from cigarette smoke is strong, pervasive, and often difficult to remove. This is a guide about removing cigarette smoke odors.
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January 3, 20051 found this helpful

To help eliminate smoke odors from ashtrays while in use, pour some baking soda in them. This also helps for easy clean up.

By Lisa S.

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February 28, 20120 found this helpful

Cigarette smoke permeates many materials of a car's interior, making it a challenge to remove the smell. This guide is about removing cigarette smoke odor from a car.

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November 21, 20160 found this helpful

This is a guide about removing cigarette smell from leather jacket. You will want to use the appropriate cleaning methods for leather when trying to remove cigarette odor from a jacket.

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August 25, 20160 found this helpful

This is a guide about cleaning cigarette smoke odors on stuffed animals. Cigarette smoke is so pervasive. It clings to everything including a child's stuffies.

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November 15, 20110 found this helpful

Cigarette smoke permeates everything in a smokers household. Removing the odor of cigarettes can be difficult, especially from anything leather.

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This is a guide about removing cigarette smoke odor from leather.

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Questions

Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

By 0 found this helpful
June 3, 2011

My husband smokes cigarettes in the bedroom, but the whole house smells like an ashtray. I've tried to get him to smoke outside but to no avail. Is there anything I can do to get rid of the "ashtray" smell in my house? Thanks.

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By Pamela

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June 4, 20110 found this helpful
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The type of cigarettes that he smokes could make a difference. My brother smokes full strength menthol - much stronger odor than the ultra light non-menthol ones that I smoke.
A couple of things you can try to cut down on the odor:

1. Get a small air purifier for the bedroom. The one I bought was around $40 at Walmart.
2. Weather permitting, perhaps he could open a window in the bedroom when he's smoking.
3. Home Depot sells a spray call Zep Smoke Odor Eliminator. It costs about $5 for a very large can. It might not eliminate all the concentrated smoke odor in the bedroom (it's in the bedding, the furniture, the carpet, etc.) but it will help a lot and should completely eliminate the smell in the other parts of the house. Just spray a little around each room whenever you notice the smell.

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Jean

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June 6, 20110 found this helpful
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I have been using a concentrated spray by yankee candle. Comes in many different scents. We both smoke.

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By 1 found this helpful
February 7, 2007

I need to know how to get rid of cigarette smoke in my house. My husband smokes. I have used all kinds of spray. Burned candles, still I can smell the smoke. What can I use? I have a small poodle, so I would need something that wouldn't hurt my dog.

Shonda from Grand Rivers, KY

Answers

By Jean (Guest Post)
February 8, 20070 found this helpful
Best Answer

Do you have a Sam's Club nearby? If so, they sell a spray called Smoke Eliminator by Zep.

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It has a nice fresh fragrance and works wonders.

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February 8, 20070 found this helpful
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I am a smoker and this is what I do. I take a dryer sheet and fold them in half and then staple them together. Then I tape them over my heater duct. I even put them in front of one of my cold air returns. When people that don't smoke comes over, I do ask them if they can smell smoke and they tell me that they don't smell any smoke.

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July 26, 20110 found this helpful

I have a room attached to my garage that is sheetrocked and insulated, but is not painted or primed. My renters smoke very heavily in this room and now that room and the garage smells. When they took down the pictures that they had hanging up there is a brown tint around where the picture was hanging.

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We have had the windows open but this does not help. What is the best way to get the smell out. Also, is priming it now just going to make the smell stick into the walls.

Please help with any ideas!

By Sue

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By 0 found this helpful
May 22, 2017

There is a cigarette odour behind the base cupboards in a fitted kitchen. A small gap at the top of each cupboard and drawer allows the smell to permeate. As the smell seems to be on the wall behind how can I eliminate this?

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May 22, 20110 found this helpful

My house smells of cigarette smoke, thanks to the people who lived in it before me. I was told to bleach the walls to get out the smell, but was wondering if there were any other ways to get out that nasty smell. Thanks.

By Deborah A

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May 22, 20110 found this helpful
Best Answer

Try this:
Add 1/2 cup of baking soda to a spray bottle. Top off with water. Shake well and spray the walls using the mist setting.

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By 0 found this helpful
February 4, 2009

I acquired a relatively new refrigerator from a house where someone smoked. The refrigerator has the smell of stale smoke inside. How do I get rid of this odor?

Gretchen from Cincinnati, OH

Answers

By Jaime (Guest Post)
February 4, 20090 found this helpful
Best Answer

I find that using baking soda is a great deodorizer, especially for refrigerators. You can either mix it with water into a paste to clean the whole fridge or pop open a box and let it sit in there for a while. I've never tried it with cigarette smoke, but it works well with onions.

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February 5, 20090 found this helpful
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I think that you could take a few charcoal briquets set on a paper plate or a piece of foil, shut the refrigerator door for a day or so, and the briquets should absorb the smell and you can throw them away.

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By Paula Jo (Guest Post)
February 6, 20090 found this helpful
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I would use a small bottle of vinegar poured into a bowl leaving it inside the fridge 24 hours or longer. Keep a small bowl of vinegar in the back of your fridge all the time to keep it smelling clean. DO NOT forget to change the vinegar out every week or two though.

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March 9, 20090 found this helpful
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I too have the same dilemma as you do. I recently received a fridge from a relative that smoked heavily and their fridge reeks of smoke. I cleaned it outside with Fantastic and Clorox Cleanup (at separate times, of course) and let it sit outside for the day. We brought it in in the evening and set it up only to discover the next day that the smell was still inside it. I then put baking soda in it and checked it the next day and it did not help at all. I am now going to try cleaning the inside with vinegar since that is what my mom swears by for getting the smoke smell out of things. Good Luck!

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By 0 found this helpful
January 7, 2008

We are moving into a lower level duplex, the upstairs tenants are heavy smokers and moved out from the lower level a few days ago. I will deep clean the carpets and walls to get the smell out of the lower level, but am concerned about the continuing tobacco smoke from above, or the air ducts.

I am not sure how to clean. Will my cleaning will be null and void because of the continuous smoking from up above?

Anya from MN

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By Candace (Guest Post)
January 7, 20080 found this helpful
Best Answer

I would think that your air ducting wouldn't be connected, but if it is, I wouldn't know what to do, maybe consider special filters. If it is not connected, the best way to get that smoke smell out is to paint your ceilings/walls, clean carpets and a/c filter, and if someone-landlord could clean the a/c unit/ducts
it would be great. Ask the landlord prior to moving in if the units are connected by airduct-I know I couldn't live like that with 3 people with asthma in my family.

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January 9, 20080 found this helpful
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You have to get the air ducts professionally cleaned or removed. Nicotine has a tar like substance that comes out in the smoke, it will stick to anything! I remember when my parents used to smoke in the house (a LONG time ago) it wasn't until my Mom saw the brown drips on the bathroom walls (the tar stuff) did she realize how gross it was and how bad it was for me and my sister (go figure, I stopped having strep throat after that!).

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January 10, 20080 found this helpful
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Honestly, I don't think you can get smoke out of an apartment. I lived in one like that for two years and every single time I was out (at church, at my parents' house) I could smell smoke on my clothes. It positively emanated from me and it was awful. Personally, as a nonsmoker, I would not rent a place that had had smokers, and as a landlord now, I won't rent to a smoker because if they smoke in the house, it wrecks it.

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By 0 found this helpful
April 1, 2009

I was given a raincoat which is a plastic material on the outside and a silky fabric on the inside. The previous owner was a cigarette smoker, and the coat stinks like cigarette smoke. The coat cannot be placed in the washer. I have hung it outside to air for over a week, placed it in the bathtub with Dawn dish soap and cleaned it with a rag, and I have sprayed it with Febreeze. All to no avail. Does anyone have a secret to getting this horrible smell out of the coat so that it can be saved?

By Jocelyn Scalzott from Pittsburgh, PA

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April 2, 20090 found this helpful
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Well, if you're sure that you're not comfortable washing it in a machine on gentle cycle, you've already tried most of what I would do (leaving outside, dousing with Febreeze, etc.). The only other thing I can think of was some advice I got years ago for getting the stinky plastic smell out of a small cooler.

The recommendation was to wipe pure vanilla extract all over the inside (or in your case the outside) and let it set for several days. I reapplied the vanilla a couple of times as it dried out and it seemed to work getting a nasty smell out of plastic (which is where I assume the cigarette smell is lingering - the cloth part should be pretty good by now).

Tomato juice is supposed to help de-stink skunk smell, so if the vanilla doesn't work you might move on to that, although I'd be careful of tomato stains on the cloth portion.
Good luck!

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April 3, 20090 found this helpful
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Have you tried using Borax? Baking soda has gotten smelliness out of plastic toys for us, and vinegar has worked for baby bathroom "accidents". Borax has directions on the box on how to use as a deodorizor. This is a shame, because that cigarette smell is very hard on non-smokers and smokers alike. I am not a smoker and my kids and very sensitive to that particular smell. Good luck.

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April 3, 20090 found this helpful
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Try tightly sealing the jacket in a plastic bag or a plastic clothes storage container with newspaper for a few weeks or more. Make sure to put the paper in the sleeves and inside the raincoat and cover the jacket with newspaper. Another thought would be to use baking soda or coffee grounds in the bag along with the newspaper. Prepare the jacket with the newspaper and lay it flat. Put baking soda or coffee grounds in a long shallow container, like an egg carton. Good luck.

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April 3, 20090 found this helpful
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You can put it in the washer, just put on gentle cycle and hang on a hanger somewhere in the house or outside until dried.

I wash my vinyl tablecloths that way and my tennis shoes, just do not throw into the dryer.

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July 1, 20131 found this helpful

I just bought my new mobile (double-wide) home. New to me, but owned by a smoker. When I first viewed the home I did not smell smoke at all and I am a real shark for smoke smell (I hate it). I viewed the home two times in two weeks. No odor. My offer is accepted and I return for home inspection - smoke! I ask. Told it was the AC - deceased husband smoked just under the built-in AC. Hmmmm, OK. Returned for a gab and buy/sell with owner (real nice woman) barely a whiff. OK. Walk-thru gets put smack up to closing and at walk-thru I could hardly breath. I opened all windows for two days - still stinks to high heaven!

Question - and thanks for excellent tips here - I could never wash walls by hand (disabled) so I wondered if I might use a thick painting roller and roll the residue off? Even the ceilings could be done this way. I couldn't do that, friends will help, but I could roll the walls. What do you think of this as a method? Seeing as how I wasn't able to smell anything at viewings (I'm sure her realtor put the fear of god into her that buyers would flee if she didn't smoke outside, but once she had a P & S Agreement she slipped back and by move out time it was packs and packs galore). I'm hoping a wash with water and vinegar or TSP (but don't you have to also rinse TSP?). I sure could not do the cleaning twice) prior to KILZ primer and paint will do the job. I will also, of course, wash all shelves, cupboards, etc. What do you think? Thanks.

By Sue B

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December 23, 20140 found this helpful

Is there some legal action I can take about the smoke getting in my apartment from my neighbor downstairs? We are getting sick as if we ourselves smoked. I have a 9 years old affected by the contaminated air too. What can I do to make the air cleaner?

By Marina R

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September 3, 20120 found this helpful

My grandbaby is visiting soon and I have been doing everything I know to rid the house of cigarette smoke. I have gotten the carpets cleaned. I am also washing draperies and steaming my tile floors. But I still can smell a stale odor even though I haven't smoked in the house in over a year. I'm thinking the walls and my plastic blinds are holding the odor. I heard vinegar and water may work, but I'm afraid the strong smell of vinegar will run everybody out of the house. Suggestions?

By Molly

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May 5, 20120 found this helpful

How do you get rid of cigarette smell in your home?

By Linda

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By 0 found this helpful
January 28, 2011

I have been given a brand new wheelchair (electric) which I needed badly, but the lady who had it smoked a lot and it smells of strong cigarette smoke. Anyone have a good suggestion on how to remove the scent from the chair? I have tried Murphy's oil soap, Lysol, Febreze and setting it out in the sun all day.
The chair is regular wheelchair material. Thank you.

By gbk from GA

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Anonymous
January 31, 20110 found this helpful
Best Answer

A vigourous cleaning using full strength distilled vinegar soaked rag on all surfaces (including the underside of the seat, arms, etc) and allow to air dry, should do the trick. You have to clean every nook and cranny. Be careful and don't clean the actual electric components though! This cleaning may need to be done two or three times but I know distilled vinegar will work and it's natural and safe.

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May 2, 20080 found this helpful

Could you help me get cigarette smoke out of a plastic covering on a used baby changing table?

Thanks,
Janine

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May 2, 20080 found this helpful
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That dreaded cigarette smoke smell. Baking soda seems to work wonders on so many things to remove odors. Try spreading dry baking soda heavily all over one side and leave in the sun if possible. Next day do the other side. You might try washing with vinegar and then soapy water.

Peace and God's Blessings
Joan - Dilley TX

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May 6, 20080 found this helpful
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Mix a few drops of tea tree oil with about a cup of white distilled vinegar and then dilute with another cup of water. Put this in a spray bottle and use like Febreeze. Works better and great for cigarette smoke.

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By 0 found this helpful
April 2, 2018

I need to find out how to remove cigarette smoke from a mobility chair that I was won in a contest, I get migraines from odors. And it works really well, but I need to find something that will clean that smell off.
Please help me out.

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February 8, 20150 found this helpful

I have asthma really bad and get headaches when I smell cigarette smoke coming into my bedroom, even with my bedroom door closed. The AC/heat vents are blocked. I have used candles, and spray alot of air fresheners. Nothing is working. I have an air cleaner and that's not helping either? What can I used that might help keep the smells away from my room?

By Jonathan J R from Philadelphia PA

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November 20, 20140 found this helpful

I just purchased a fabric headboard and frame. It looks perfect and I got it for a great price, but, when I got it home I realized just how it reeked of cigarette smoke! I sprayed diluted white vinegar a few times and that didn't help. I also put out bowls of activated charcoal, but that didn't help either. Then yesterday I had it professionally cleaned and the smell seemed gone, but then once it dried the smell is back. Can I get rid of it, or should I just cut my losses and sell it?

By Beard

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By 0 found this helpful
September 22, 2015

My sister-in-law gave us a microfiber couch. It's in great shape except they are smokers. Is there anything that will get this cigarette smell out of it?

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