There is nothing worse or more embarassing than getting into your car on a hot summer day only to smell rotten old smoke. I think that smokers and non-smokers will both agree that the smell of old cigarettes is quite disgusting. Even if you don’t smoke, we have all had the Aunt that smokes like a chimney and drinks 10 cups of coffee a day or maybe purchased a car that was smoked in. Learning how to get rid of smoke smell in a car is easy and within a few hours your car will be smelling good.
I have smoked in my cars for years and recently sold a car that I smoked in for over 5 years. Although I smoke a lot, I wasn’t like my grandfather who would smoke with the windows up. However, my car still smelt awful. I tried a lot of different products and cleaners and no matter what the smell of the smoke would come back. I found a very simple solution to completely rid a car of smoke smells for good.
What You Need
- 4 cereal sized bowls
- water spray bottle (an old Windex bottle or similar works)
- white vinegar
- baking soda
- couple scented dryer sheets
- clean rag
Smoke Smell Removal
- Mix a solution of 2 parts water 1 part white vinegar and fill up your spray bottle. Vinegar is one of the best solutions for cutting any smell. Spray the entire inside of your car including the floor, ceiling, seats, and windows. Next turn your car on and put the air on full blast and allow your car to run for ten minutes. Every few minutes open the door and spray more vinegar into the air.
- Next turn off your car and take your rag and begin to thoroughly wipe down every surface including the windows. Smoke has tar in it and sticks to everything which is why you might notice your windows are a little foggy.
- If you have smoked in your car a lot I would repeat step 1 and 2 above one more time. I know your thinking your car smells like vinegar but it’s better than smoke and that smell will diminish.
- Next take the baking soda and sprinkle it all over your car. Put it on the seats and all the carpeting in the car. Baking soda absorbs almost any smell. Not only will it help absorb the smoke smell but any other odors your car may have lingering.
- Fill your four bowls with an inch of vinegar and place one in front of each seat in the car. Two in the front and two in the back.
- Leave your car sit over night with the windows up. The vinegar and baking soda will help absorb the smoke smells.
- After your car has sat overnight take out the vinegar and vacuum up all of the baking soda. Your car will have a strong vinegar smell but thats ok. Take a clean rag and wipe down all your surface one last time just with some water.
- Stick some dryer sheets in your vents and take a ride around town with your windows down. The vinegar smell may linger for a day but your car will be rid of smoke smells.
- Leave your windows down for the next few days if possible. Fresh air always helps.
Commercial Smoke Removal Products
The first thing you need to watch out for when using any commercial products is if they don’t have a cleaning agent in them they aren’t going to get rid of the smell. They simply will mask the smell for some time. Products like Febreze work to get rid of odors as it uses a chemical compound to absorb the odors similar to baking soda or charcoal. Although you will get rid of some of the odors your not necessarily cleaning the car.
One thing I would suggest before purchasing any commercial products is that they either have charcoal or baking soda in them. This means it has an agent that will help absorb the smells like we mentioned above rather than just mask the odor.
Try the tips using vinegar and baking soda to remove the smoke smell in your car that we discussed and I think you will be more than happy with the results. If you tried anything that worked for you let us know.