Asked on Jun 03, 2013

How do you get cigarette smoke smell out of furniture?

A friend of mine was given a piece of furniture and the cigarette smoke smell is horrible. I have ran into this problem a couple of times and never did have a good fix for this. Any ideas? I'm sorry, should have been more clear in my question. This is a wood dresser. I don't normally work with upholstered pieces so didn't make myself clear that it was wood!
  9 answers
  • Mary Insana Mary Insana on Jun 03, 2013
    If its wooden like a dresser you can paint the drawers with a poly or any clear coat to "seal" in the odor. You could also try spraying with a Febreze type product or a vinegar and water solution before putting a clear coat on. If you are painting it you could do a coat of primer first to also seal in the odor. When we had new carpet installed there had been a place where one of our cats had peed and I didn't want him doing it again on the new carpet. The installer told me to pull up the carpet in that area and put a coat or two of primer to seal the area. It worked and kitty has never peed there again. Or you could call a fire restoration company and ask what they use to remove smoke smell.
  • Danylle M Danylle M on Jun 04, 2013
    Very difficult. If its a fabric piece I have heard that Lisol spray will sometimes kill the odor. On wood a really good cleaning of every surface with an ammonia based product.
  • Taunnie Taunnie on Jun 04, 2013
    I bought a used car a few months ago and the previous owner was a smoker. The smell was very difficult to get rid of. I tried Frebreze and other air fresheners. They only worked for the short term. I even steam cleaned everything and that didn't work very well either. The thing that worked the best was coffee. I placed a couple of scoops of ground coffee in a coffee filter. I made a little satchel of it by gathering the ends and securing them with a twist tie. I made several of these and left them in the car. After about 12 hours they had done the trick though I left them in for about a week. The coffee smell is much nicer than the cigarette smoke and it works by absorbing the odor. That's why I threw them out after one week. They smelled more like stale cigarettes than coffee.
  • Cyndi Cyndi on Jun 05, 2013
    you could try mixing a few drops of lemon essential oil and lavender essential oil in a few cups of baking soda (mix really well) then rub that on the fabric and let it sit a day, then vacuum well and repeat if necessary... you might want to clean it with Woolite foam upholstery cleaner first and let dry completely before using the baking soda... I would use my steam cleaner with plain water and just keep cleaning it till the water comes out mostly clear then use the baking soda after it was dry
  • I like to use baking soda to help soak up those nasty smells. If its something cloth, like a chair, I would shampoo it with your carpet cleaner, let it fully dry...say for a couple days, then sprinkle baking soda over it and let it sit for a day then vacuum i up. The baking soda absorbs odors. Then I would febreeze it and take off the pillows and wash the cover if you can. IF it is a piece of wooden furniture, I would wash it down with murphys wood oil soap then again, after this fully dries, sprinkle baking soda on the DRY furniture and let it sit for a day or two, then sweep it off and wipe it down with furniture polish or another washing with murphys wood oil soap and repeat until the smell is gone.
  • Patti Nicholas Patti Nicholas on Jun 09, 2013
    If you are going to refinish the piece usually sanding the surface will get rid of the stain/varnish that contains the scent, but for inside the drawers a really good cleaning with vinegar water (really drown it) then set it out in the sun to dry. If it can sit out for several days that's even better. Then pour coffee beans into the drawers, add some essential oil like cinnamon or eucalyptus, close up the drawers and forget it for a week at least. My husband and I used to be smokers, I had a dresser in storage for few years and when I got it out I was appalled at the stench! This is the only thing that worked. It did take two weeks and a second batch of oils (I used 5-10 drops each time), but the dresser is fabulous now and only smells like the lavendar drawer liners now.
  • Sally Roesner Fuhr Sally Roesner Fuhr on Sep 30, 2015
    Try filling the drawers with charcoal briquettes then put out in sunshine.
    • Tina Hill Tina Hill on Oct 27, 2015
      if you try this you can put the charcoal into a fabric bag like an old scrap pillowcase so the inside of the drawers don't get charcoal crumbs and dust @
  • Della Della on Feb 05, 2016
    All the ideas are great but don't forget to scrub the top of the vehicle as well our all your work was for naught
  • I've read that sitting the piece in the sun for a few days will remove the odor