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6 Tips to Get Rid of Cigarette Smoke Smell

Cigarette smoke odor accumulates over time. Even if you’re not a heavy smoker, you’ll eventually notice that the smell becomes stronger. Fortunately, you don’t have to live with this unpleasant atmosphere on a permanent basis. 

There are six actions you can take to reduce or eliminate the odor of tobacco smoke in your home. 

1. Clean Carpets and Upholstery

Cigarette smoke clings to the fibers in fabric, so any upholstered furnishings and curtains in your home should be thoroughly cleaned. Additionally, use a carpet shampooer to remove the odor and tar from rug and carpet fibers. 

If you don’t have the proper equipment to clean carpets and upholstery, you can contact a professional odor removal service

2. Check Your HVAC System’s Air Filter

You won’t have much luck in getting rid of the cigarette smell if you’re not cleaning your HVAC system’s air filter every 30 days. The filter will help reduce the chemical compounds in cigarette smoke that cause the odor. When your filter is dirty, pollutants will remain in the treated air. 

If you notice a stronger cigarette odor as the HVAC system starts a new cycle, check the filter.

3. Use Vinegar to Neutralize the Odor

A simple yet effective way to eliminate tobacco odor from your home is to set out small bowls of vinegar. Make sure to place the bowls in places where children and pets won’t disturb them. Leave them out overnight to give the vinegar time to deodorize the air. 

For a stronger odor, try boiling vinegar in a saucepan. As the vinegar boils, the steam will waft through the air and cleanse the smoky smell.

4. Wash the Walls

If tobacco smoke residue remains on your walls, you will likely struggle to freshen the air in your home. To clean your home’s walls, you’ll need microfiber cloths to both wash and dry the walls. You’ll also need a mixture of one quart of warm water, a teaspoon of all-purpose cleaner, and ½ cup of baking soda. 

Dampen one cloth with the mixture and scrub the walls, moldings, and baseboards. Use a second, dry cloth to wipe the moisture and grime from your walls. Keep extra cloths handy and change them out as they accumulate dirt and grime. Clean lighting fixtures in the same way.

5. Clean the Windows

It’s easy to forget about the windows, but it’s important to clean them with an ammonia-based glass cleaner. Use clean microfiber cloths to wipe the windows dry after spraying the cleaner on the glass. If possible, clean both sides of each window.

It’s a good practice to open the windows when someone in your home is smoking, which can leave tobacco residue on the metal screens. You can clean the screens without removing them by using a microfiber cloth and dampening it with white vinegar. 

Wring the cloth out to avoid dripping too much vinegar on the window frame. After you wipe down the screen, dry it with a clean cloth.

6. Wash Your Clothes and Bedding

Clothing that commonly attracts cigarette smoke odors includes jackets, shirts, and headwear. If you open a closet door and feel overwhelmed by the odor of tobacco smoke, washing and drying your clothes should resolve the problem. 

Make sure you’re using a laundry detergent with a deodorizing agent. It can also help to use dryer sheets to leave your clothes with a fresh scent.

Send delicate items out to be dry-cleaned. Make sure the laundry service knows you’re concerned with the cigarette smoke odor in your clothes.

This is a good time to wash your bedding as well. If you experience itchy or dry skin, you may have tobacco smoke trapped in the fibers of your sheets and blankets. You can also wash them in your laundry machine, using the same deodorizing detergent.

Prevent Tobacco Smoke Odors from Returning

Finally, it’s important to adopt lifestyle changes to ensure the unpleasant odor of stale cigarette smoke won’t return. This can include a no-smoking policy in your home. If you do allow people to smoke, open the windows or turn on a ceiling fan for better ventilation. 

Taking steps to reduce cigarette smoke in your home will both keep you healthier and create a more pleasant environment for your living space.