The PuroClean Blog

How Do Restoration Companies Remove Tobacco Smoke?


Years of smoking in a home can leave its walls and contents blemished and smelling bad. And when the time comes to remove the smoke residue and odours, successfully completing the task will be difficult. Professional cleanup is often necessary. Learn more about smoke removal below.

How does smoke affect properties?

Tobacco smoke is a complex mixture of over 4,000 compounds. Smoke sticks to every surface of the smoking area, such as walls, windows, furniture, and in every nook and cranny. It leaves a yellowish-brown sticky substance that can be seen, smelled, and felt.

Cigarette smoke residue can permanently alter the appearance of every surface it sticks to. What’s worse, the HVAC system in the building will carry the smoke residue and odour throughout the structure. This residue is extremely hard to remove, much harder than the soot left over from a fire.

How do you remove tobacco smoke from homes?

As tobacco residue is present throughout the entire affected area, removing it is often very time- consuming. There is no magic formula that just whisks away residues and smells.

The only effective way to remove tobacco residue and smell is through very thorough cleaning and then sealing all structural surfaces. Restoration specialists start tobacco smoke removal by cleaning all surfaces, which always includes deodorizing agents to help eliminate the very tiny particles of tobacco smoke.

Once the technicians finish cleaning the visible surfaces, using specialized equipment is often necessary to remove the very last of the odours that are not accessible (such as inside walls or joints). This will often involve hydroxyl generators or ozone generators – professional equipment that effectively destroy the smelly particles that penetrated hard-to-reach areas.

The next step consists of sealing the surfaces with a sealant. A product designed to seal smoke residues is required – these can lock in the very last of the stains and odours. Finally, the surfaces will be ready to paint, refinish, or to apply new coverings.

What about the soft items?

The soft things in a home such as upholstery, bedding, draperies, and clothes absorb odours easily and thus become damaged. Because of this, they are very difficult to successfully restore and may require outside specialists. In many cases, though, the decision is made to simply replace these materials and items.

To remove tobacco smoke odours in homes effectively and in the shortest time possible, a professional restoration company like PuroClean should be hired. PuroClean provides complete smoke cleaning and sanitation, professional deodorization, as well as duct cleaning services.