How to Eliminate Odors From Smoking

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Smoking (Image: Arnaud-h/iStock/Getty Images)

Long after a cigarette has been stubbed out, the smell may remain, warns Nick Gromicko in "Tobacco Odor Removal" for the International Association of Certified Home Inspectors (InterNACHI). Smoke particles are so small that they can permeate every part of a home, as well as linger on clothes even after they have been washed. Luckily, you only need a few basic supplies to make your home smell sweet again.

Clean-Smelling Clothes

Vinegar is the key to eliminating lingering cigarette smoke odor from your clothes, according to the article "Remove Cigarette or Cigar Smoke Smells" for Reader's Digest. Fill your bath tub with very hot water and add one cup of vinegar. Hang your smelly garments above the steam, close the door and then leave the clothing there for several hours. If your handbag is smelling of cigarette smoke, pour a little dry ground coffee into a small pot or baby sock and leave it in your bag for a couple of days. This will neutralize any bad smells, suggests the website Handbag in " How to Get Smoke and Musty Mildew Smells Out of Your Handbag."

Fresh Furniture

Baking soda is a great weapon against cigarette smoke odor. Give your upholstered furniture a light sprinkling. Leave it for at least three hours before vacuuming off, and your chairs and sofas should be rid of cigarette smells. Clean wood surfaces thoroughly with a suitable household cleaner. InterNACHI suggests using a less acidic cleaner than a typical ammonia-based all-purpose one to preserve the quality and appearance of the wood.

Odor-Cleared Carpets

A dry carpet cleaner with granules will help to get your carpets smelling fresh again, advises Heloise in "How to Remove Cigarette Smoke Odor" for Good Housekeeping. Make sure you read the directions for use. Typically, you spread the cleaner over your floor, leave it for a specified length of time and then vacuum it up. Seriously spongy carpets may require a carpet cleaning machine, which you can rent, or a professional shampoo.

Washing the Walls

Cigarette smoke over a number of years can get into the walls of a house and can be tricky to get rid of. Heloise recommends placing two bowls of white vinegar or ammonia in the room overnight. Charcoal is an effective odor-busting alternative to vinegar, advises InterNACHI. Place charcoal in bowls, which you will leave in the room overnight. If the walls can be wet-washed, scrub them with a non-abrasive, all-purpose cleaning solution.

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