Wood Floors -- How to get smoke smell out???


Old 04-22-02, 01:40 PM
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Wood Floors -- How to get smoke smell out???

I ripped up the carpets in my house because the previous owner was a heavy smoker and I'm trying to get rid of the smell from the house.

I wanted to know if there was any product that I can use to wash the hard wood floors with that would get out any lingering smoke smell in the wood.

Also, anyone know of a product that is good to wash down the walls of the house with?

Thanks for your help.
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Old 04-22-02, 07:35 PM
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Cleaning wood floors

How you clean your wood floors will depend on the type of finish. Most floor finishes today are polyurethane. Use a recommended cleaner that specifically states on the label that it is safe for polyurethane finish. The National Oak Flooring Manufacturer's Association does not frown upon the use of 1/4 cup white vinegar in one gallon of water. Water and wood do not mix. Damp mopping means a mop squeezed nearly dry. Never apply cleaner directly to floor. It is best to spray it on the mop and then clean floor, doing a section at a time. Toss an old terry towel on the floor and rub back and forth with your foot to dry immediately and to prevent streaking. Polyurethane finishes should not be waxed. If you have a waxed finish, it should never be damp mopped. If you pour a tablespoon of water on the floor in an inconspicuous area and let it set, the finish will turn white if it has a wax finish. Wax finishes can be restored by waxing with recommended paste wax for wood floors and buffing. The solvents in the wax will dissolve old wax and soils.

Cigarette smoke tends to permeate everything. You can clean walls and wood work with an all purpose cleaner or degreaser. Some recommend TSP (trisodium phosphate), but I am not a fan of harsh chemical cleaners. Then, seal/prime walls with B-I-N, a shellac based primer, and paint. Cleaning the surface of the floor may not eliminate the smoke odors that have settled between the boards into the subfloor beneath.

Manufacturers of ozone machines, which purify the air, claim the ozone will reach areas where it is impossible to clean. These machines can be rented or purchased.

Smoke odors will be more noticeable on humid and rainy days. Odor Ban, a concentrated enzyme cleaner from Sam's Club, can be used for cleaning surfaces and for misting to deodorize. The enzymes must be given time to kill the odors (a minimum of 30 minutes). Odor Ban is effective on all surfaces that can be cleaned with water. Do not use on silk, wool, or leather. It is effective for removing organic stains in fabrics such as blood, urine, vomit, fecal material, food, plant, mud, grass, and other organic stains. Thus, it is excellent for pretreating and soaking laundry stains. The longer you soak, the better because the enzymes will keep working until the organic stain is gone. The enzyme cleaner can be misted to remove odors and is used by morgues, hospitals, nursing homes, and others who have to deal with odor problems. Concentrated enzyme cleaners are available at janitorial supply stores. If you do not have a janitorial supply in your area, go to www.thecleanteam.com where Jeff Campbell sells Stain Gobbler Concentrate.
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