How to get smoke smell out of house??????????

I have a duplex that has been closed for a month in this 90 degree heat . It smells awful of smoke and It was not to be smoked in but was. How can I get this odor out to rerent to someone else? Thanks :help

Wash all walls and floors with Pinesol or another cleaner. Remove and wash any drapes. Steam-clean the carpets. Put plug-in deodorizers and use Febreeze. Open all windows to air out.

I don’t know of any quick fixes. You may also have to repaint a wall or two and you will have new paint smell. If they have smoked heavily, with a yellow-brown tint on all walls, you will need to clean and repaint.

Or get another smoker.


If you need to paint, use KILZ as a primer. That will get rid of the smoke smell - it will even help with smoke smell from some minor household fire damage it works so good!

Kilz is a good recommendation, but White Shellac works very well. Its common trade name is BIN. You SHOULD wear a respirator when applying. It will kill the stains and the smell at once. If Kilz is a Ford, BIN is a Mercedes. I would NOT use in multi-unit if some are occupied and you have fussy tenants as it will smell pretty strong and they WILL complain. :argue

Get yourself a brand new sponge mop. Place terry towels at the base of the wall to catch the drips. Spray greased lightening on the walls. When the nicotine starts to drip, wash the walls with the sponge mop and clean hot water.

After washing, wipe the walls with a clean terry towel.

If smoke damage is bad, you might have to repeat.

Wear gloves because just handling the dirty water and towels will give you nicotine poisoning.

Wash out inside the cabinets. Clean the heating ducts. Have the carpets and drapes cleaned. You might have to throw the curtains and blinds away and get new.

Have your carpet cleaner treat the carpets with odor killer.

It’s so hard to understand why landlords don’t want to rent to smokers. After all, it’s their lungs. (detect sarcasm)


What is “greased lightning”?!



It’s a line of cleaner/degreaser products:


Much easier to just knock down the house and rebuild :rolleyes

Zep makes a great deodorizer that eliminates smoke odor. You can literally spray it on a coffee can full of butts and the odor disappears.

I second the kilz primer is massive quantities. I had a tenant for 6+ years that smoked those extra long brown smelly cheap as butt cigs all day and night and we thought it would never be gone. Kilz killed it with 3 coats and 3 of white latex interior…good luck it will take several coats for certain.

If you really want to get rid of the odor, use Zinsar Bin primer instead of Kilz. It’s Shellac / oil based but it is what all of the expert’s recommend.

I have used it in an entire house and can tell you for certain, it really works. Home Depot carry’s it. I have even done a side by side test with both primers and could smell a little smoke odor coming from the Kilz and did not smell any at all from the Zinsar. Also, only one coat of the Zinsar is needed.


When I tun a unit, I wipe all of the walls down with denatured alcohol. This does a couple of things. It removes odors and stains and it gives a nice, even color to the walls. It’s a lot quicker than painting, and I can usually get by with spot painting only a few spots afterward. Wear a fume mask and gloves when you do this. You might have no choice but to paint the ceiling if it’s acoustic popcorn texture, and for this I agree with shellac based paints. The problem with oil based paints is that, over time, with changes in humidity, small drips of oil form scattered around the painted surface. For the carpets, I rent a rug doctor from a grocery store or a home improvement store. They have all kinds of shampoo that you can buy specifically for this machine, but I take the liberty of using all kinds of deodoizers in this machine, and I have had that technique work very well. This stuff works, and I can turn a unit in a few days for very little money out of pocket. I then charge the previous tenant prevailing wage for services rendered.

+1, paint with OIL based primer (not latex) and paint

I would look into professional duct cleaning as well. Their systems are designed to remove odors and bacteria within the ducts of the home and may also include the air handler. You can also look into ‘ozoning’ the house which is a process that starves the air of oxygen which will kill off bacteria but this may be more of a remedy when trying to get pet odors out but may be worth looking into.

Hope that helps…

thanks for the tips… couldn’t get the smell of smoke out of these apartments for shit!