Great furniture can be hard to turn down when you find it on Craigslist or at a garage sale, especially when you’re trying to furnish your first home. If that great chair or couch harbors cigarette odors, you may not have to pass up a good deal. Try these methods to get cigarette smell out of furniture.
Deodorize and Air Out
Start simple. Remove any slipcovers or cushion covers. If they are machine-washable, wash them according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Include a splash of white vinegar in the wash. This will neutralize most odors, and will rinse out before the washer finishes its cycle.
Sprinkle a generous amount of baking soda over the remaining foam and upholstered surfaces of the furniture. If weather permits, take the furniture outside to a bright, sunny area and let it air out for several hours. Before you bring the furniture back inside, vacuum up the baking soda and decide whether or not the cigarette smell is gone.
If airing out the furniture wasn’t enough to remove the cigarette smell, try steam cleaning the upholstery. Use the drapery or upholstery attachment on a standard carpet cleaner with a cleaning solution designed to eliminate odors.
Be sure to test the steam cleaning solution on an inconspicuous spot before you attempt to clean the entire piece of furniture. Some cleaning solutions can cause spotting on certain fabrics.
Call a Pro
If these methods do not remove the cigarette smell from your furniture, it’s time to call in a professional upholstery cleaning company. They will be able to restore your furniture using ozone treatments, or they may suggest reupholstering the piece.