You’ve found your first apartment; nice location, beautiful scenery, perfect amount of rooms. Not too large, but just right for you at the moment. You shut yourself in to enjoy the solitude, open your page-turner to the marked passage and, after a while you notice something you hadn’t before; the nasty, stale smell of cigarette smoke. Going over things in your mind, you realize when you viewed your new apartment, the doors and windows were open and the odor didn’t seem to gag in your throat as it does now. You feel annoyed, but glancing around your new apartment, you realize you don’t really want to leave. Cleaning cigarette smoke is no easy task but you’re prepared to make a go of it.
As you can tell, the foul, clingy odor of cigarette smoke lingers inside a house or room long after the cigarette is out and the smoker is gone. It’s also evident that cigarette smoke can cause a yellowish tar and nicotine discoloration on the walls that hardens with time. Whether you’ve moved into an apartment belonging to a smoker, bought a house from a previous smoker, rent your property (knowingly or unknowingly) to a smoker or have recently given up the habit yourself, you will have a problem on your hands. Don’t get discouraged, there are a few things you can do to remove the stains and smell.
Cleaning cigarette smoke and ridding a home of the odor is never simple. Cigarette smoke saturates porous surfaces, including carpets, curtains, furniture, walls and ceilings. Don’t fret; there are several do-it-yourself methods to clean up your home. One method involves using warmed vinegar in a spray bottle. For less noticeable stains, you can dilute the vinegar using a one-to-one ratio with warm water. Apply the warmed vinegar or mixture directly to walls. The warmth of the solution should soften the hardened nicotine stains as well as remove the odor. Also, a combination of ammonia and water (½ cup to one gallon of water or ¼ cup to a gallon for painted walls) applied to the wall and left for about five minutes should help. Rinse with warm water. Trisodium phosphate (found at household cleaning areas of the store or at home improvement/hardware stores) can also help.
Remember to take all the proper safety precautions when cleaning, such as wearing eye and skin protection. Also, read all product labels and use as directed.
Cigarette smoke odor can stick to many areas in your home. Do-it-yourself methods could be helpful if the tenant was a light smoker, however, if the tenant was a heavy smoker or a light smoker over a long period of time, it may be better to hire a professional who has better access to specialized cleaning supplies and has expert training in cleaning methodology. Soil-Away Cleaning and Restoration has over 25 years of experience in cleaning cigarette smoke and removing pesky odors. Armed with the know-how and equipment needed to really clean your home, they can get you up and going in no time. They are available 24/7 at (603) 641-6555.
Written by E. Aceves