How to Get Rid of Cigarette Smoke Odor in a Home
LESLIE: Bill in Florida needs some help with a new home. How can we help you with that?
BILL: My brother-in-law purchased a home lived in by a smoker of 13 years: a heavy smoker. Inundated the home with – considerably with the smoke. And we had mentioned some options to him, which was KILZ, take out the rug and sanitize his ductwork. Well, he’s done two of those three things, except for the sanitation of the ductwork and the vent system, and there’s still a preponderance of smell in there. And I was just wondering, are there any other mitigating things that we haven’t considered that we could provide to him to help him out?
LESLIE: Did you do anything to the subfloor that was underneath the padding?
BILL: He did nothing to the subfloor. I know that for a fact.
TOM: OK. It would be a very good idea to prime that.
BILL: He’s not a man of means, so to pull the rug up and put it back down is probably not going to be an option for him.
LESLIE: Are you sure that filters have been changed in the ductwork and in the cooling system itself?
BILL: OK, I know the filters have been changed, because I changed them myself when I showed them to him. He has not had the ductwork cleaned and one of the recommendations we’re making is that he hire someone to get in there and clean it. And when you take out the big intake vent, there’s just yellow corrosion all around that foam as it leads up into the roof of the property. So I’ve recommended that he might want to have that foam pulled out.
But again, depending on the expense, I don’t know if he can do that. Is that something you guys would recommend?
TOM: Well, here’s another step that you could take in the meanwhile and that is that 3M has a filter that just came out on the market that is a carbon-based filter. So it’s designed to not only filter the air in terms of dust particles but it’s also designed to remove odors from the air. So you might want to think about replacing the HVAC filters with the 3M Filtrete Odor-Reduction Filters. The carbon in there is pretty significant; it’s about five or six times more than what the nearest competitor has. It really is quite a lot and I think it might help a little bit in this case.
Cleaning the ducts when they’re that dirty and that gross is going to be probably a good move. But you might just want to replace the filter with one that’s designed to absorb odor in the meantime.
BILL: Well, I appreciate the assistance. We’ll try the filters and we’ll just go from there.
TOM: Try the filter. It’s not very expensive. You know, it’s probably $25, $30 and it’d be worth a shot.
BILL: OK. Hey, thanks for your time, guys. Good show. Appreciate it.
TOM: You’re welcome. Good luck with that project. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.