• Page:
  • 1
  • 2

TOPIC: How do I get rid of that smell???

How do I get rid of that smell??? 5 years 4 months ago #1028

I have a unit that smells like cigarette smoke. I had the entire unit double painted, including the ceilings, left the windows open for weeks, set off Fire D foggers, and used air fresheners, but the unit still smells like smoke and has been vacant for over almost 3 months. What can I do to get rid of the smell?

Thanks!
  • Rose M
  • Rose M's Avatar
  • Posts: 443
  • Thank you received: 22
  • Karma: 18

Re:How do I get rid of that smell??? 5 years 4 months ago #1029

Use coffee grounds. Get a can of Folgers and sprinkle it all over the carpet. Let it sit overnight and then vacuum the carpet. Coffee also works well for smelly refrigerators, by the way (just put a bowl full and leave it for 24 hours).

The coffee approach works really well for strong smells like curry. Cigarette smoke is its own beast and might actually be coming from a neighboring apartment.

Good luck!

Re:How do I get rid of that smell??? 5 years 4 months ago #1031

@David: The coffee grounds idea is great. Can't wait to try it (we've used coffee grounds on a stove in apartments where there had been a death).

Here's the approach we've taken:

1. We use the TPS solution (often used in fire restoration work) to clean ALL surfaces BEFORE the apartment is painted. We definitely don't want to paint on nicotine-stained surfaces.

2. We've invested in commercial-sized ozone machines and run them continuous, sometimes as long as a day or two. The use of the machines requires an ozone notice be posted on the door to the apartment so no one enters unaware the machine is operating. We use the machines in apartments with smokers, pets, and sometimes strong cooking odors.

Rick Hevier
Richard Hevier
Richard S. Hevier
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Last Edit: 2 years 4 months ago by Rick Hevier.

Re:How do I get rid of that smell??? 5 years 4 months ago #1033

David - I second Rick with the ozone machine - very good fix for smoke/pet/musty odors, however use caution in the length of time, exposure rates, etc. with residents and staff alike. Worth the investment.

Re:How do I get rid of that smell??? 5 years 4 months ago #1072

If these ideas don't work then you may need to consider replacing the carpet. I understand that is expensive, but simply masking the smell temporarily will only frustrate new residents in that unit.

Re:How do I get rid of that smell??? 5 years 2 months ago #1601

The coffee grounds didn't help, but the ozone machine did the trick! The new resident even mentioned that she is so glad the unit doesn't smell like some of the other places she looked at!

Thanks!
  • Rose M
  • Rose M's Avatar
  • Posts: 443
  • Thank you received: 22
  • Karma: 18

Re:How do I get rid of that smell??? 4 years 3 months ago #3862

What can I do if I have a resident that is complaining about the curry smell cooking from the resident next door with a common wall?

Re:How do I get rid of that smell??? 4 years 3 months ago #3863

This is not actually that uncommon and there are actually apartment communities that refuse to allow people to cook with Curry because of the everlasting damage it does to apartments. Curry produces an oil that actually floats into the air and will absorb into drywalls, wallpaper, fabrics, and especially carpets. By refusing to rent to people that cook w/ curry is risky, could be considered a fair housing issue.

First, do you have any idea where the smell is seeping through at? More than likely if the kitchen is in front of the unit then the smell is escaping through the door into the common hallway and back into the other apartments through cracks in teh door or when they open and close the door. If this is the case then the residents who are cooking the food need to securly close off their door to prevent smells from leaving the home.

I found that the best way to get rid of the smell is to advise the people cooking the curry to make sure that the pots are covered while cooking and after cooking and to use ventalation fans if they have them (unless this is a direct cause of why the smell is going into the other unit if they share a ventilation system). They can also close off all doors adjacent to her apartment to keep the smell controlled.

In the meantime, enzymes work best (they eat away odors because it is an alive micro-organism) and have her mask the odor w/ vanilla beans boiled on the stove, or orange rinds boiled on the stove.. I have even heard of peaches being boiled because it offsets the smell of curry.

The resident has a right to not have to smell that... If it continues I would actually think about calling your attorney to see what you can legally do before you lose a rental.

Re:How do I get rid of that smell??? 4 years 3 months ago #3864

I had a resident who's neighbors used curry and the smell would seep into his apartment. He caulked around the seams where the pipes come through the wall under the sink, and put plastic under the light and electrical switch plates. We left it there when he moved and the new resident never had a complaint. Good luck!
  • Rose M
  • Rose M's Avatar
  • Posts: 443
  • Thank you received: 22
  • Karma: 18

Re:How do I get rid of that smell??? 4 years 3 months ago #3866

Go to www.biocidesystems.com. They sell Chlorine Dioxide odor eliminators. I ordered a pack, and SORRY but I haven't tried them yet. The product is eco-friendly. My husband had used these in his old airline days, when they wanted to eliminate odors on commercial airplanes, but he didn't realize it had been deregulated for regular folks like us to buy.

They say it will: "eliminate any severe odor including cigarette odor and cigar smoke, skunk odor, pet urine odor, vomit odor, soured milk odor, mold odor, mildew odor etc. It will also decontaminate by destroying harmful pathogens, spores and fungi that can lead to diseases and staph infections."

I hope they're right! If you try it first, let us know!
  • Mary Gwyn
  • Mary Gwyn's Avatar
  • Posts: 64
  • Thank you received: 12
  • Karma: 3
  • Page:
  • 1
  • 2

Multifamily Discussions

More Topics »