Cigarette Smoke Odor Removal - House

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Cigarette Smoke Odor Removal - House

Postby Ben Klingston on Thu Oct 11, 2012 9:18 pm

So I'm haus shopping. Found a place I dig. Current owner is a smoker, I am not :thumbdown:

The place has all hardwood - no carpets. A bit of furniture remains - a sofa, bed, and minimal fabric blinds. The place has all cedar-planked ceilings. I've been there twice and the first time, the odor wasn't too bad, the 2nd time, worse (think the owner must have been there shortly before we were). It's not crazy-strong - not like nicotine stains on the wall or anything, but noticeable.

I've looked a bit into odor removal, and it seems that home restoration companies do this (mainly for house fire recovery), using a combination of wall scrubbing, duct cleaning, odor-sealing primer paint, and ozone gas neutralization.

Anyone have experience with any of this? I am not sure I can make an offer without somehow being guaranteed that the odor can be removed.
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Re: Cigarette Smoke Odor Removal - House

Postby Mr. Colby on Thu Oct 11, 2012 10:49 pm

I'm guessing a thorough cleaning of all surfaces and getting the ducts professionally cleaned would destroy a vast majority of the odor
Last edited by Mr. Colby on Fri Oct 12, 2012 12:18 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Cigarette Smoke Odor Removal - House

Postby columbia on Thu Oct 11, 2012 10:52 pm

I haven't smoked in my house in well over two years - and quit 17 months ago - and the odor/soot in the duct work seems to be a huge factor. Try that first.
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Re: Cigarette Smoke Odor Removal - House

Postby Willie Kool on Fri Oct 12, 2012 12:50 am

It's likely that just installing a new furnace filter (wonder how old and clogged with tar the current one is) and washing everything down would take care of the majority of the problem. If it has solid cedar plank ceilings, a light sanding would most certainly cover any residual odour.

Related helpful hint: For removing cigarette tar / nicotine stains, Scrubbing Bubbles Bathroom Cleaner works great.
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Re: Cigarette Smoke Odor Removal - House

Postby KennyTheKangaroo on Fri Oct 12, 2012 9:40 am

bulldozing the house is a reasonable solution
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Re: Cigarette Smoke Odor Removal - House

Postby Sam's Drunk Dog on Fri Oct 12, 2012 2:45 pm

I moved into a home previously owned by an Indian family that stunk of curry. We have a dog so it took about a month to replace the curry smell with the dog smell.

As for things we did to help get rid of the smell other than having a dog, we replaced most of the carpet and thoroughly cleaned everything. Replacing the furnance filter should help too. Based on some insurance fire claims I reviewed one thing not to do is any heat pasteurization, as it can damage drywall and wood work throughout the home.
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Re: Cigarette Smoke Odor Removal - House

Postby Lt. Dish on Fri Oct 12, 2012 8:09 pm

Agree with the duct recommendations, Mall Guard. If cleaning the walls doesn't completely solve the issue, then I'd repaint the whole interior. If some rooms are wallpapered, then I'd tear it out. I have terrible allergies, though, hence the extreme measures. You may not need to go that far. But if you love the place and really want to make it your home, then you could look at it as a quality of life investment from which you know you'll benefit.

Miscellaneous wall spot-cleaning recommendation: Mr. Clean Magic Eraser. I rate the product a K. Da. $.

Good luck to you. What an exciting time!
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Re: Cigarette Smoke Odor Removal - House

Postby Hockeynut! on Fri Oct 12, 2012 9:17 pm

Just take up smoking.

Problem solved.
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Re: Cigarette Smoke Odor Removal - House

Postby Ben Klingston on Sat Oct 13, 2012 8:51 am

Sam's Drunk Dog wrote: Based on some insurance fire claims I reviewed one thing not to do is any heat pasteurization, as it can damage drywall and wood work throughout the home.


Thanks for all the replies, folks. Calling around to some restoration companies, they offered many similar suggestions. I'm confident that the duct cleaning, wall scrubbing,or if need be, repainting (with an odor-sealing primer) will do the trick on walls. On the cedar, other than some sanding or wipe-down with Murphy's one company also suggested it may ultimately be cured with applying a clear shellack (non-gloss), which is what they do to get rid of pet urine (or human urine, I suppose) from hardwood floors. Most companies also offer either/and ozone gas and 'thermal fogging' services (2 different things). The ozone is what it sounds like - ozone machine, stuck next to the cold air return, and let that puppy run for a few hours. Another company described a 'thermal fogging', which sounds suspiciously like the 'heat pasteurization' mentioned above. They described the fogging as basically a machine that heats up a degreasing and neutralization chemical, and it literally creats a fog through the house. That said, I could see where that could damage wood or drywall.... I'm guessing these methods (fogging, pasteurization) are the same thing....?
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Re: Cigarette Smoke Odor Removal - House

Postby Fire0nice228 on Sat Oct 13, 2012 9:28 am

I work in hotels and when people smoke in our non smoking rooms we (after charging them a buttload) run the 'ozone machine' for awhile in the rooms.
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