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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration


5/11/2016 (Permalink)


St. Charles Home Health: How to Rid Your Home of Lingering Odors


The scent of smoke is one of the most difficult odors to remove in the home. Whether the odor is from the cigars from poker night, a small kitchen fire, or even a large home fire, the lingering scent of smoke can penetrate deep into your furnishings, carpet, and even the paint on the walls. The scent of smoke, like all scents, is made of tiny particles. These microscopic particles easily penetrate fabrics and find their way into crevices, overwhelming your home with the unpleasant, and sometimes irritating, odor of smoke. Follow these steps for do-it-yourself smoke odor removal.

If the smoke smell still lingers or if the job is much larger than you can handle, St. Charles SERVPRO will effectively and happily do all the hard work for you.

First Steps

Open windows and turn on fans to air out the room. In the next step, you will be working with vinegar and water solution is excellent for getting rid of odors, however, it can be irritating to eyes and nose. Increasing circulation will help to dissipate the vinegar scent while it does its job of eliminating smoke odors.

Cleaning Hard Surfaces

If the lingering odor is from a fire, you may also notice that there is discoloration around the area where the fire was located. Vinyl, plastic, and wood surfaces that are discolored or show other signs of fire and smoke damage, they will most likely need to be replaced or require professional cleaning to eliminate the smoke residue that is causing the odor.

For all other hard surfaces, try a natural deodorizing solution of 3 parts white vinegar to 1 part water. Use gloved hands, cloth towels, and a large bucket filled with this mixture to wipe hard surfaces. You will find that the solution will become dirty quickly and will need to be replaced often.

While a quick wipe down is sufficient for the vinegar solution to do its work, it is important to be meticulous about wiping all hard surfaces, from floors to ceiling, to be the most effective in a DIY smoke odor removal.

Cleaning Fabric and Carpet

For fabric items that are washer safe, try adding 2 cups of white vinegar to the wash to get rid of the smoky scent. Use cold water and a low heat or fluff dry as heat can sometimes reactivate the smoke smell.

If that does not work or if the item is too big to fit into the washer, such as draperies and area carpets, take them to the dry cleaner instead.

For carpets and fabric-covered furniture, sprinkle with generous amounts of baking soda and let it sit for 30-60 minutes. Using a HEPA filter vacuum, vacuum up the baking soda and smoke particles.

If after following these steps you find that the smoke odor remains or if the smoke damage calls for a thorough professional cleaning, Batavia SERVPRO are the experts in deodorization and odor removal for both inside and outside the home. Using time-tested and industry-approved techniques, SERVPRO will eliminate every last trace of odor and smoke damage.

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