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Exhausted all options?! Need help getting rid of cigarette smoke

1584 Views 13 Replies 11 Participants Last post by  bassJAM
I purchased a home a few months ago. At the time my wife and I viewed it it just smelled like a vacant house. Well leading up to settlememt the old owners moved back in for 10 days to get rid of their stuff. Upon moving in, it stunk like cigarrettes. I replaced all the carpet with either new carpet or laminate floors. All the walls were treated with Kilz. A few days ago I hired a duct cleaner (member of the NADCA) to clean the ducts. They did a good job, I can actually feel the heat coming out of the them as well as see inside the ducts through the vents. The problem is the smell coming from the ducts is still horrible smelling of stale cigarettes. The cleaner did not use any chemicals to treat fyi. I am lost for options. Can someone help steer me in the right direction.

Thank you!
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Ayuh,... Change the air filter in yer air handler, 'n spray Fabreeze through it with it runnin'....

Also spray it anywhere, 'n everywhere ya can into the ducting...
Time will fix the awful stinkin smoke. Yes- the chemicals that produce the stink will become oxidized by the fresh air, continuously being introduced into the home. I know its not a quick fix- smoke is one of the worst odors to eliminate. Fabreez- thats a waste of $$- just temporary/cover up. That smells too. Air out the house every day, and do not quit! This will take weeks!

I worked as a fire damage repair expert years ago. Smoke damage repair costs $$$$$. Of course, your situation is not as severe as a fire produced smoke, but many principles still apply.....
While you are waiting for it to air candles may help and they say live plants help to a degree.
Btw, I think ozone is pretty dangerous - it has the same class 4 MDS ranking as nerve gas. It's an oxidizer, like hydrogen peroxide and bleach.
Ozone is dangerous if you don't follow instructions. It's good for killing odors.
Ozone is dangerous if you don't follow instructions. It's good for killing odors.
and bacteria/fungus. Much ozone is created in swimming pool chlorine systems. Kills the green algae.
For what it is worth, several years ago Consumer Reports rated Sharper Image's Ionic Breeze as unacceptable due to excessive ozone which was deemed a health risk. After that rating, the company designed a newer model producing less ozone but the newer model was not rated very highly anyway.

Meguiar's Odor Eliminator - you'll find it at the auto parts store. It doesn't mask odors, it eliminates them. I smoke, and even nonsmokers - who aren't desensitized to the smell - think I don't smoke in my truck. That's the ultimate testament to how well this stuff works.
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I think the ozone generator next to your return air vent would be a good idea, and then run the HVAC fan continuously if you have that option.

Next best thing I can think of is light candles close the the vents when you are home and let time take away the stink.
I never had it done, but does a duct cleaner physically clean the heat exchanger and evap. coil (if you have central air)?

You said you sprayed the walls with kilz, what about the ceilings? That was my muse in my home.
jmd brings up a good point. Your ducts might have been cleaned, but what about the coil inside your HCAV unit?
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