House Smells Like Cigarette Smoke, But We Don’t Smoke

Last Updated on March 8, 2021 by

Cigarette smoke is unpleasant to smell and worse when it hovers in your home, yet you don’t smoke. So, what makes your house smell like cigarette smoke? If the previous occupants in your house were smokers, it is possible that your walls, ceiling, and soft surfaces were stained by tobacco smell. Your home could also have a cigarette smell if your neighbors are ardent smokers.

Smelling smoke in your house is alarming, and some people even associate it with ghosts or a haunted house. In this guide, we’ll take you through all possible reasons for the cigarette smell in your home as well as how to eradicate it. Keep reading!

What Is Causing The Cigarette Smell In Your House?

Tobacco smell is quite distinct and unmistakable, which makes it overpowering and uncomfortable for non-smokers. The only thing that would cause tobacco smell is the smoke itself, meaning if your house has that smell, there are reasons. Here’s a list of possible reasons why your house would smell like cigarette smoke:

1. Smokers Previously Occupied Your House

If your new home smells like cigarettes and you are confident that none of you smokes, chances are the previous owner was a smoker. It is more challenging to get rid of tobacco smell than it is to remove nicotine stains because smell can be attached to carpeting or soft materials. When there’s cigarette residue on surfaces, the smell keeps slipping out.

2. Poor Air Sealing In Your House

The quality of air sealing in your home will determine how much air or smoke leaks in and out of your home.  When you have poor air sealing, and your neighbour smokes, or you have a smoking zone in your neighbourhood, you will smell cigarette smoke in your house. You can use effective air-sealing techniques to keep these odours away from your home.

3. You Bought Second- Hand Stuff From Smokers

When buying second-hand items such as furniture, appliances or upholstery, it is essential to know a little about the previous owners. If cigarette smoke irritates you so much, it is advisable to stay away from buying second-hand items from smokers.

4. Hanging Out With Smokers In Your Home

If one of your buddies who is a smoker comes over and smokes inside the house, the smell could linger for quite some time. For some smokers, this smell is their signature and its attached to all their clothes and even body. If such a person comes visiting, they will leave traces of this smell on everything they touch.

How To Get Rid Of Cigarette Smoke In Your House

Cigarette smoke odor is a health hazard that can be linked to health complications such as asthma, cancer, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. The smell of cigarette smoke can be hard to get rid of, especially on hard surfaces, but it is possible to eradicate it. The best way to get rid of this smell is to clean and ventilate your house. If you are trying to get rid of lingering smell, try this method:

1. Ventilate the house by running fans and keeping windows open

2. Clean walls using trisodium sulfate or any heavy-duty cleaner meant for removing odor before you paint.

3. When painting, use an odor sealing primer to help musk any remaining odors

4. Remove carpets or have them professionally cleaned to remove any lingering smell

5. Clean tiled floors or surfaces with water mixed with bleach and varnish wooden floors

6. Replace filters in your HVAC system and ensure air ducts are clean and open

7. If the smell is too bad, consider having a professional come and treat the place for you

Getting Rid Of Passive Smoke In Your House

Sometimes, your house smells like cigarette smoke because your neighbor is a smoker or there’s a smoking zone nearby. While it’s almost impossible to ask your neighbor to quit smoking, you can take measures to ensure this smoke doesn’t affect you and the ambiance of your home. Here’s what you can do:

1. Correct bad air sealing- most houses that were built in earlier years have air sealing issues that let odors from outside get into the house. To know if you have bad air sealing, light a scented candle or incense outside when it is not too windy, then go inside the house and try to smell. If you notice scent coming in, note the areas it’s coming in through because they will need fixing.

2. Get professional cleaners to clean your upholstery, furniture, and carpets thoroughly to get rid of cigarette smoke smell

3. Use dehumidifiers and air purifiers to help remove smoke particles in the air by sucking up dust particles. For purifiers, we recommend choosing one with HEPA filters (high-efficiency particulate air) since they are most efficient.

4. Clean or replace draperies such as blinds, sheers and curtains often since they easily absorb unwanted smells from outside. When washing curtains ensure you clean thoroughly and use fabric softener for a fresher scent.

5. Replace rugs and carpets that have an unpleasant smell. If you bought second-hand rugs that had a cigarette smoke odour and a cleaning doesn’t help, it might be time to ditch that rug. If the previous tenant in your house was a smoker, and the carpet keeps bringing up an odour, remove the carpet for your comfort.

6. Keep your home smelling fresh by using substances that can absorb the smell. You can use baking soda or charcoal placed in small corners of the house. You can also use coffee to keep your home fresh and smelling clean.

Why Do I Keep Smelling Cigarette Smoke When There Is None?

You could be having Olfactory hallucinations or phantasma. This is a medical condition that makes you smell certain odours even when they don’t exist. Most people tend to smell smoke, dirt, burning rubber or natural gas. This condition is mostly as a result of sinuses or respiratory issues and can be treated easily or disappear on its own.

Can I Host Smokers In My House And Not Get Cigarette Smoke Smell?

Yes, you can. So long as they don’t smoke in your house, smokers do not pause much threat to having a smoke smell. Most smokers smell like cigarette, yet they are clean, thus making it hard for that odour to remain in your home. Ensure you inform them beforehand that you don’t allow smoking in your house to avoid disappointments.

Can You Prevent The Smoke Smell From Getting Into Your House?

The only foolproof way of preventing smoke from getting into your house is ensuring you don’t live near smokers and you don’t smoke. You may not have a choice on the type of neighbours you get, but you can smoke proof your home. To start with, air sealing your home will go a long way in ensuring smoke from outside doesn’t come into your house. Consult a professional to check the quality of air sealing and make adjustments where necessary. You can keep cigarette smoke away by having a designated outdoor smoking zone that is a distance from the house. In these smoking zones, people can use gadgets such as smoke buddy to neutralize smells.

Does Cigarette Smoke Smell In A House Act As Proof Of Haunting?

If you have superstitious friends, you’ve probably heard about this myth that a haunted house smells like smoke. There’s not enough proof for these claims so avoid spooking yourself.  In most cases, if your house smells like cigarettes, chances are someone is smoking. It could be your roommate or a neighbour or sometimes smoke that is clinging on clothes or furniture.

How Do I Get Rid Of Cigarette Smoke Smell In My Car?

If you just bought a car from a smoker, you know how uncomfortable it is to keep smelling smoke. Getting rid of the smell that has accumulated over the years isn’t easy, but we’ve got your back. If simple cleaning doesn’t work, try odor neutralizers such as vinegar, baking soda, charcoal to absorb the smell. If this still doesn’t work, consult a professional car cleaning company for an ozone odor removal treatment. These procedures are affordable and 100% effective, giving you immense value for money. The process works by releasing ozone which oxidizes unwanted molecules and breaks them down. Your car detailer will use an ozone generator to send UV light to oxygen atoms. This method removes odor permanently, and by the time you are done, your car will be smelling crisp and fresh.

Winding Up

There’s nothing as bad as having to deal with odor whose source you are not aware of. Cigarette smoke smell can compromise the quality of life in your home and cause health complications. It would be best if you worked fast to identify the source of the smoke smell and know how to eradicate it. We hope that this guide is helpful for you as you find the source of the odor and eliminate it. You deserve to live in a fresh and clean home with a calming ambiance.

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