Whether you had a small kitchen fire or more significant property damage, you may find that the smell seems to linger after you've cleaned up your home. If your home still smells like smoke even after repairs have been made, you may need to take a few extra steps.
1. Clean the Carpets, Upholstery, and Drapery
Smoke smell can embed itself directly into fabric. You may not realize it, but it may actually be the stuffing of your couch or the lining of your drapery that has a residual smell. Cleaning all of the items in your home professionally can help reduce the odor, in addition to removing any chemicals and ash that may have been deposited during the fire.
Carpets, in particular, may need to be professionally cleaned. This is because smoke gets deep down into the padding, and needs an extraction tool to get out.
2. Air Out the House Completely
Open the windows and the doors and let the property air out for a day or two while vacant. There's a reason why indoor air quality is considered to be much worse than outdoor air quality; it's because indoor air often stagnates. Airing out your home once in a while can be a positive thing for your health, even if you aren't dealing with smoke.
3. Clean Your Air Filters and Ducts
It's possible the smell you're experiencing is being circulated by your HVAC system. Your HVAC system has a long network of ducts, which could have smoke residue in it, and filters, which could also be dirty. A professional duct cleaner can help.
4. Wipe Down Your Surfaces
Smoke gets everywhere. That includes walls and ceilings, and other nooks and crannies you might not have even considered. Take a wet wash rag and some all purpose soap and wipe down all of your surfaces. Look at the rag afterwards; if it's ash-colored or deep gray, it could be residue from the smoke.
5. Strip the Wallpaper
Wallpaper is particularly difficult to deal with after a fire. Most wallpaper will simply need to be removed, as the smoke can permeate down to the glue.
If you're still smelling smoke, it may be time to hire a fire damage cleaning service, such as Sweeney Cleaning. It may not only be smoke you have to worry about. Fires are often put out with chemicals, which could also be leaving residue around your home. Professional cleaning services will make sure your property is completely move-in ready.