According to statistics, 14% of adult Americans smoke. That equates to 34.1 million adults.
Unfortunately, if you or someone else has smoked in a vehicle or home, the smoke odor and residue this leaves can be long-lasting and strong-smelling.
What’s more, besides leaving an unpleasant stale smell, tobacco smoke residue can also pose invisible health risks. Research is now showing that smoke residue can dislodge from surfaces and fabrics, resulting in “third-hand smoke.” Alarmingly, these third-hand particles also result in increased long-term exposure similar to second-hand smoke.
If you aren’t a smoker, exposure to secondary smoke is usually just for a brief period. However, having smoke odor in your vehicle or home means you’re being exposed to third-hand smoke on an ongoing or near-constant basis.
Fortunately, although cigarette smoke odor is tough to budge, there are ways you can get it out of your home, rental, or vehicle. Here at Vamoose! we are experts on smoke odor removal, so keep reading as we list 10 of the top smoke odor removers in 2021.
1. Activated Charcoal
There are a variety of things you can try for removing smoke odor. These include DIY options, as well as specifically formulated products.
To kick things off, we’re going to be taking a look at some of the popular DIY options.
One of these is charcoal. Activate charcoal, to be specific.
Charcoal is, by nature, a highly porous material, which is why people use it for absorbing odors and impurities. Activated charcoal goes through a heat or chemical process to increase its absorbency even further.
The science behind activated charcoal’s odor-absorbing properties is that odor particles adhere to the large surface area of the charcoal through Van de Waals force.
To trap smoke odor using charcoal, you’ll need to start by picking up some activated charcoal. You can either get it online or from physical retailers or certain pet shops.
Then, place your charcoal briquets or pellets into open containers or breathable sachets and distribute them around the area where you want to combat smoke odor. Lastly, let the charcoal sit for a few days.
One of the perks of this method is that charcoal is a natural and relatively cheap substance. However, it does have some drawbacks as a smoke odor eliminator.
Firstly, it might not be strong enough to make a substantial difference. Secondly, activated charcoal will not remove smoke residue from surfaces and fabrics.
This means that while the odor might drop a little, the harmful compounds that cause third-hand smoke exposure will still be present—and will likely continue to smell.
2. Baking Soda
Another DIY option you can try is baking soda. Baking soda is often used for odor removal, especially for refrigerators.
Also known as bicarbonate of soda, baking soda reacts strongly with acids neutralizing them into salts. This means that odor when particles of an acid pH come into contact with baking soda, they will be eliminated.
Unfortunately, tobacco smoke odor can be made up of both acidic and alkaline particles. This means that baking soda won’t effectively remove all smoke smells.
What’s more, like charcoal, using baking soda as a smoke odor eliminator won’t do anything to smoke residue on walls, surfaces, and fabrics.
However, if you still want to try out the baking soda method, here are some of the ways you can use it as a mild smoke odor exterminator.
Firstly, you can place tubs of baking soda in the affected area. If you’re dealing with carpets or fabrics on things like car seats and furniture, you can also opt to sprinkle out a layer of baking soda.
Take note that this will be harder to clean up, but when it comes to fabrics and carpeting direct contact is more effective.
Vinegar is another household item that can be used as a mild smoke odor eliminator. Unlike baking soda, vinegar is a strong acid. Because of this, it can neutralize alkaline odor particles that come into contact with it.
As some smoke odor particles are alkaline, vinegar could potentially neutralize these. To use vinegar for smoke odors, you can either place open containers or dishes of vinegar in the affected area. Or you can put it in a spray bottle and spray it on all the surfaces.
You can also use a vinegar solution to scrub ceilings, walls, or other surfaces where smoke residue might be sitting. This may help to dissolve and reduce residue layers.
Because vinegar and baking soda are on opposite sides of the pH scale, they are often used together to combat smells and dirt build-up. If you want to double down on your DIY smoke odor elimination, you can use both baking soda and vinegar in combination and see if this gets rid of more of the odor.
As mentioned above, one of the issues with the DIY smoke odor eliminators is most of them don’t do anything about the residue build-up. They just absorb whatever odor particles they happen to come into contact with.
Bleach, on the other hand, is something that can eat at smoke residue on surfaces.
However, this method also comes with its downsides. Firstly bleach is a strong, toxic substance that isn’t environmentally friendly. Secondly, washing an entire room with bleach is a lot of work. Lastly, bleach is not an ideal solution for areas such as car interiors or carpeting, and it can damage and fade fabrics and finishes.
Another strong substance that can remove smoke odor and residue is ammonia. Thanks to its corrosive properties, ammonia will literally eat away any smoke residue if you apply it to walls, ceilings, floors, or other surfaces.
Unfortunately, however, ammonia has a very strong odor of its own, worse than the smell of old cigarette smoke. While this does dissipate after some time, it can often take weeks or months if there is little ventilation.
Lastly, ammonia is also a toxic substance that can pose serious health risks if one is exposed to high concentrations of it in the air. Ammonia is also completely unsuitable for use on fabrics, carpeting, and upholstery.
6. Air Fresheners
Another popular item that people use for masking cigarette smoke odor is air fresheners. Take note, however, the key term here is masking. Air fresheners do not remove odors. Instead, they simply cover them up with a synthetic smell.
Once this perfume dissipates, you’ll be back to square one.
For this reason, air fresheners are not an effective smoke odor exterminator. They are merely a quick fix. What’s more, if you’re dealing with a strong smoke odor, an air freshener may not be able to cover it.
Instead, you’ll simply be left with a mix of the smoke odor and whatever scent of air freshener you chose.
Zep is a popular smoke odor eliminator product. It comes in an aerosol can and can be easily sprayed into the air and onto surfaces and fabrics.
Zep is designed to combat all smoke smells, not just tobacco smoke. Besides neutralizing smoke odor, it also has a pleasant odor of its own.
Zep is ideal to use if someone has recently smoked in your car or home. You can quickly spray it into the air after they have left, and most of the smoke odor should be taken care of.
However, Zep does not target smoke odor build-up. If you are dealing with a room or vehicle that has built-up smoke odors that have accumulated over time, the residue from this has to be handled before the odor will improve.
Therefore, if you’re deodorizing a room or car that already has a strong smoke odor, you’ll need to use a more comprehensive smoke odor exterminator product.
Like Zep, Ozium is an odor eliminator product that comes in a spray can. Instead of merely masking odors, Oziums helps to eliminate them by destroying airborne bacteria that contribute to odors.
Ozium was originally designed for fighting bacteria in hospitals. Nowadays, one can also buy it for general odor-fighting purposes.
Ozium is not specifically meant for combating cigarette smoke odor. However, it can effectively clear the smell of recent smoke from a room or vehicle.
As with Zep, Ozium works well for immediate smoke smells. If someone has smoked in a space, all you need to do is spray it into the air, and the smoke odor should drop significantly.
However, Ozium is not designed to eliminate smoke odor build-up. The instructions also specifically state not to use the product on walls, floors, carpets, varnished surfaces, drapes, or other fabrics.
If you are trying to eliminate smoke odor coming from embedded residue, then Ozium will not remove the source of the problem. While you can spray Ozium to clear away smoke odor coming from the residue, the results won’t last.
Until your tackle the smoke and tar residues, the odor will continue to be an issue.
9. Fresh Wave Gel
Fresh Wave gel is another great product for tackling odor particles in the air. Besides being an effective smoke odor eliminator for airborne smoke smells, it is also completely biodegradable.
Fresh Wave is non-GMO, non-toxic, and entirely non-hazardous. The gel comes in a jar, which, once opened, begins evaporating. Once it is in the air, it reacts with airborne odor particles and breaks them down. One jar lasts roughly 30-60 days.
Because of this, Feshwave is a convenient and hands-off method for controlling odors, including occasional smoke odor. However, like the majority of DIY smoke odor elimination methods and store-bought products, Fresh Wave doesn’t target smoke residue and build-up.
Although it might help keep the air fresher, it won’t get to the root of the problem. You will probably still detect some smoke odor, and as soon as the deodorizing gel is finished, the smell of smoke and tar build-up will become noticeable once more.
If you are looking to combat long-term smoke build-up, Vamoose! cleaner is one of the few smoke odor eliminators which can do this. While most other products only purify the air, Vamoose! is able to seek out odors and penetrate deeply into fabrics and residue layers.
Here, it breaks down the tar and smoke residue, eliminating the root source of the smoke odor. Besides this, it also eliminates stains from smoke build-up. Are you battling rooms whose ceilings are stained that signature dirty orange from years of heavy smoking? If so, then Vamoose! is the product you need.
Not only can Vamoose! products eradicate smoke odor and its source, but they can also transform stained interiors and surfaces. One of the other many benefits of Vamoose! spray is it’s entirely safe for use on fabrics and soft materials, and won’t damage wood and varnished surfaces.
Are You Desperate to Get Rid of That Smoke Odor?
Eliminating smoke odors completely can be a tough job. What’s more, if you don’t get it right, you could be left with a severely devalued home or vehicle—not just an unpleasant smell. According to estimates, smoke odors can reduce a home’s resale value by up to 30%.
While there are various products and household items you can use to clear the smell of smoke from the air, these won’t be effective if you’re dealing with long-term odor buildup.
Fortunately, Vamoose! smoke odor exterminator is here to save the day. Not only does it completely eliminate cigarette smoke odor build-up, but it also tackles stains and residue marks.
Sound too good to be true? Check out some Vamoose! reviews.
What’s more, here at Vamoose! we are so confident in our products that we offer a 30-day money-back satisfaction guarantee.
Ready to eliminate that old smoke smell once and for all? Try Vamoose! spray risk-free today by ordering online.