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How To Get Rid Of Smoke Smell

According to a 2007 study by National Cancer Institute, lung cancer and other pulmonary diseases are the leading cause of death in long-term smokers. Lung ailments are not limited solely to smokers; evidence shows that “secondhand” smoke and its lingering odor and particulate also lead to lung problems. In this post, I hope to impart a few valuable tips, and show you how to get rid of the smoke smell in a house or apartment. Whether you are a current smoker trying to keep the home smelling fresh or a new tenant or owner intent on cleaning a smoke-smelling residence, this knowledge will be useful.

Vacuuming and Cleaning

The first and perhaps most important thing to do to get rid of the smoke smell in your house is to thoroughly clean and vacuum the inside. Tobacco smoke very stubbornly clings to the fiber of carpets, drapes, mattresses and other soft material. Dust and wipe down every surface in your home with household cleaning agents. You should even clean the walls and ceilings because these too can hold the smoke odor, especially if the previous tenant was a heavy smoker. Exhaustively vacuuming and cleaning will get rid of the dangerous ashes and begin to make your home smell better immediately. Be sure to use the accessories with your vacuum to clean couches, pillows, and other materials that hold smoke smell.


The smell of smoke and other malodorous materials thrives in a humid environment. The smell of smoke will grow stronger on a humid day. To get rid of the smoke smell that worsens due to moist air, consider using a dehumidifier in your home. Drier air will help the smell disappear.

Good Home Ventilation

Particulate from cigarette smoke and its odor lingers in the air. If you are a smoker trying to keep your home smelling fresh, open your windows and doors while smoking to allow for cross-ventilation. If you are not a smoker, but still looking to remove cigarette or cigar odor, cross-ventilation is still beneficial as you clean. Fans also help to push out malodorous air. You can place fans facing outward in open windows and doors.  Proper Ventilation is essential whether you are a smoker trying to keep the home clean, or a resident trying to clean a new home.

How to Get Rid of Smoke Smell with HEPA Filters

Installing air purifiers with high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters in your home will remove the smallest particles of ash and smoke – down to 0.3 micrometers. HEPA filters gather and eradicate these tiny particles and can efficiently get rid of the smoke smell in a house or apartment.  Please note that HEPA filters alone will not get rid of all of your sensitivities.

How to Get Rid of Smoke Smell with Activated Carbon Filters

Even more effective than HEPA Filters, activated Carbon filters are specially designed to capture minute smoke particles.  The filters are very porous, and can soak up contaminants that cause odor and lung irritation.  Activated carbon also removes chemicals, bacteria and viruses. We recommend air purifiers which utilize both a HEPA and activated Carbon filter. Austin Air products, such as the Healthmate, use HEPA together with 15 lbs. of activated Carbon and Zeolite to provide some of the best protection available against airborne smoke particles. Another good example is the Airgle PurePal Plus air purifier, which both removes existing toxins and prevents others from taking hold. Please also see our reviews to help find the best air purifier for smoke removal.

Keep these tips, and how to implement them, in mind to finally get rid of the smoke smell in your house. These remedies will also prevent new odors from sprouting up. There is not one magic technique that will solve the entire problem; it is best to apply all of these steps to completely cleanse your home. Doing so will help you breathe easier and will mitigate serious threats to your health.

Additional Resources

Additional Resources: How to Get Rid of Allergies
  Do Air Purifiers Work?

By: Eugene Ravitsky