Although you had a fire that affected only a portion of your house, the smoke traveled throughout your home and permeated every surface with its odor. You want your house to smell clean and fresh again, but you want to do more than mask the smell. Below are tips on how to neutralize smoke odors after a household fire.
Get Rid Of Smoke Odors Lingering In The Air
The smell of smoke can linger in your air, especially if your house is closed up tight while you use a central heating and air conditioning system. Use the following steps to freshen your home's air and absorb remaining odors.
- Open every door and window for two days. You can close them at night to keep rain or moisture from dew out of your home.
- Change the filters on your heating and air conditioning system.
- Clean all of your home's vents and registers.
- In each room, put a cup of baking soda or activated charcoal in a plastic tub. Both of these absorb odors from the air. Replace them every two days for two weeks.
Even after doing the above steps, you are still going to smell the smoke odors from the walls, carpets, and furniture. Along with these steps, combat the odors by continuing on to the next sections.
Use Baking Soda On Your Rugs, Carpets, and Upholstery
Smoke odors can deeply permeate the fibers of your carpets and furniture upholstery. Follow the directions below to use baking soda to absorb and neutralize the smells in these items.
- Take all furniture cushions and area rugs outside on a hot, sunny day to air out.
- Sprinkle them with baking soda and allow it to remain until you bring everything in, shaking off the excess before taking them inside.
- Vacuum your carpets and furniture with a brush attachment to remove any soot or dust. Wear a filter mask to keep from breathing the particles into your lungs.
- Throw away the vacuum cleaner bag.
- Sprinkle your carpets and furniture with baking soda, allowing it to sit for 12 hours.
- Vacuum using a fresh bag.
Wash Your Walls And Ceiling With Vinegar
While the smoke billowed throughout your rooms, the odors were absorbed into the paint or wallpaper of your walls and ceilings. Follow the directions below to use white distilled vinegar to neutralize these odors. You will also need an empty spray bottle and clean rags.
- Fill the spray bottle with 2 cups of undiluted vinegar.
- Spray a fine mist on your ceilings. Wear safety goggles and a filter mask to keep the liquid from hurting your eyes and respiratory system.
- After finishing the ceilings, spray the walls.
- Allow the vinegar to air dry. As it dries, it will absorb and disperse the odors.
Launder Your Blankets, Curtains, And Clothing
All of your blankets, curtains, and clothing that came into contact with the smoke need to be thoroughly cleaned. Follow the directions below to launder these items. You will need baking soda and white distilled vinegar.
- At the beginning of each load of laundry, add 1 cup of baking soda along with your regular detergent.
- Wash the items on the hottest temperature safe for them.
- When the rinse cycle begins, add 1 cup of vinegar into your load.
- When the washing cycle is complete, run it through one more rinse cycle and add fabric softener, if you desire.
If the smoke damage is extensive and has affected the interior of your home's structure, you may need to have it inspected. You may need to speak with a service that provides smoke damage restoration to find out other options available to you. Click here for one option for smoke damage restoration.