How to Clean Cigarette Smoke From a Car

by Brenda Priddy
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The smell of cigarette smoke in a car is very difficult to remove. Whether you've quit smoking or you're cleaning out a car previously owned by a smoker, the smell is annoying and unpleasant. Luckily, there are several cleaning methods and remedies to use that will eliminate the smoke smell from inside your car. Combine methods to remove all traces of cigarette smoke.

Step 1

Remove all cigarettes, ashes and other smoking products from the vehicle. Keep the windows open for 24 hours on a windy day to disperse much of the smell from the car.

Step 2

Mix a solution of one gallon of water, half a cup of ammonia, a quarter cup of vinegar and a quarter cup of washing soda, a type of stain-fighting laundry soap found in the laundry detergent aisle, in a bucket. Wash all hard surfaces in the car with the mixture. Open all doors and windows in the car, as you work, to help disperse the smell of the smoke and the washing solution.

Step 3

Clean the vehicle's carpets and upholstery with a carpet cleaner. Use the setting on the machine for heavy traffic and clean the carpets on a dry, sunny day to prevent mildew and mold from forming. Clean the seats with the upholstery attachment. You can also add a small amount of vinegar to the cleaning solution to help purge the smoky smell from the car.

Step 4

Dust the fabric of the vehicle with baking soda once the upholstery dries. Allow the baking soda to sit in the car for 24 hours then vacuum up the powder. Baking soda will absorb much of the smoke and vinegar smell from the car.

Step 5

Spray an odor neutralizing spray inside the car every day. This will help eliminate much of the smoky smell from inside the vehicle.

Place an odor absorbing block inside the car. The block will absorb most of the smoke smell, leaving the rest of the car smelling much better. You can also use citrus peel or fabric softener sheets to achieve a similar result. Place the peel or sheet inside the car and leave it until it dries out. Much of the smoke smell will be gone in a few days.

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