How To Permanently Eliminate Cigarette, Tobacco & Fire Smoke Odors

They say, where there’s smoke there’s fire, but that old saying only tells a part of the story. The rest of the smelly truth concerns the putrid odor smoke leaves behind; it’s like an unwanted houseguest who just won’t go away. Despite the glamour of circling smoke rings so often seen swirling in old movies, smoking is not only messy but smelly as well. And even though it is banned in many public places throughout the United Sates, establishments such as casinos, hotels and certain other environments still permit smoking. To boot, smoking is still freely permitted in many countries throughout the world.

So with all of this smoke still permeating our environments, one question remains — is it possible to fully eliminate the smells from cigarettes, tobacco or fires? The answer 99% of the time is an absolute yes, and this article reveals the industry secret to effectively conquering this smelly demon in any interior space, large or small.

Understanding smoke, no matter how strange that sounds

While on the surface, smoke may seem to be the last thing you would ever want to care about much less understand if you are a business owner that permits smoking, someone who has suffered from a fire or even a home-owner living with a heavy smoker, but if you are and want to rid your environment from these smells, you may find these scientific facts interesting. The physical form of smoke is a very odd phenomenon; it is neither a gas nor a solid and its millions of particles float effortlessly through the air. Even worse, tobacco particles not only stick to each other but also to every other surface they touch, and this residue is the reason furniture, clothes and so many other elements retain the odor of smoke for so long. With fabrics, particularly, their surfaces are ideal for both capturing and hanging onto smoke particles, making for an extremely persistent odor problem.

Smoke from fire damage can be even more illusive and stubborn than smoke from tobacco products. The burnt materials from fire damage determine the type of odor elimination agent and application that is needed to obliterate them, and therein lies the real key and origination to permanently eliminating all types of odors caused by smoke.

The Industry Secret To Ending Smoke Odor Smells – End Smoke

In the early 1970s, worldwide companies providing property damage restoration remediation and cleaning services to the public were challenged with the stubborn smells that smoke damage can cause, and an effective odor neutralizing solution was in high demand.

In 1973, Arnold Zlotnik, the owner of Air-Scent International, embraced the challenge and ended up developing a number of formulations, the most successful of which was, and continues to be, an amazingly effective vanguard in the fight against these stubborn smells. He aptly named the product End Smoke®, and it was so effective that Air-Scent introduced this odor neutralizer to the broader market base. This became the birth of End Smoke® as a leading, globally used odor neutralizer.

But what is the secret ingredient that has led to End Smoke’s success? According to Arnold, it’s due to the inclusion of a substance called Metazene®.

What is Metazene and how does it neutralize smoke odors?

Metazene is an odor neutralizer additive that works in a manner similar to a magnet at a molecular level. The malodor smoke molecules become attached to the metazene particles, which are the larger of the two, and form a heavier molecule with a higher vapor pressure. The metazene-infused molecules eventually “win”, terminate the malodors and, well, in the case of tobacco smoke odors, kick the butt of the butt from which it came.

Why is End Smoke® better than competing odor neutralizing products? Metazene® is the reason why End Smoke® is a better product than any other odor neutralizer on the market today. Other odor neutralizing products contain water and perfume and rely heavily on enzymes to eradicate smoke odor. While enzymes are said to initiate a microbial action in which the organic material causing the bad odor is digested, this method is ultimately not very effective for residual or vaporous odors in the air. The bottom line for any company dealing with smoke odor problems is EndSmoke® molecularly ends smoke for good.

What are the four different applications End Smoke offers?

End Smoke® was designed to affect smoke odors of all kinds and for all types of surfaces and interior environments. There are four diverse applications which include: liquid hand spray applications for hard surfaces and textiles, granular and powder applications for carpets, and dry cartridge & cold, micro particle mists for high volume larger areas via HVAC systems.

1) Liquid sprays or fog applications

Spray applications offer solutions for smoke odors that have invaded fabrics and other surfaces. Bad odors are impinged into fabrics and other surfaces such as draperies; carpets; chairs; sofas and wall coverings, which means they are splattered against a surface with significant velocity. Only direct contact via spray applications will eradicate impinged smoke odors. Consider Air Scent’s End Smoke® Odor Absorber, a non-aerosol spray that lasts for 24 hours. It is best utilized and instantly neutralizes strong smoke odors in any setting arising from ashtrays (yes, people still smoke), soft furniture, walls, ceilings, textiles, clothing and draperies.

2) Granular and Carpet Powder Applications (Rug Aroma®)

Rug Aroma® powder is comprised of fine particles that are sprinkled onto the affected carpet and left until the next vacuuming. This is the main difference between Rug Aroma® carpet powder and other brands, whose products for the most part are either vacuumed up immediately or within a short time frame. This carpet powder lasts much longer and a minimal amount will combat even the most stubborn smoke odors. Applied lightly, Aroma® carpet powder is very fine and almost invisible.

Even better, Rug Aroma® is gentle on carpet fibers and will not clog vacuum cleaners. It deodorizes and freshens the air in one step and is recommended as a carpet and room deodorizer that lasts for seven days, eradicating odors in hallways, guest rooms, casinos floors, lounge areas and more. It can also be added to ashtrays and ashtray stands.

3) Dry Cartridge HVAC systems for larger areas

Eliminating tobacco smoke odors on a larger scale requires special treatment. The Aroma Beam dry cartridge systems and scent stylers (cold micro particle mists) both can be used to effectively eliminate odors in larger spaces when placed directly into HVAC systems (they can also pretty much be strategically placed anywhere). These two solutions are very popular in North America and even far more marketable in Europe where smoking is more prevalent. Casinos, bars, cigar lounges use and benefit from these powerful and effective odor-removal systems. Air Scent’s Aroma Beam is made to target affected coverage up to 50,000 cubic feet. Its cartridges are specially designed for non-spill, perfect linear diffusion and the system works continuously without timers, which means no setting and re-setting is required.

The Scent-Styler is a powerful odor-eliminating application system that is easy to both install and use. It can effectively combat smoke odor in small and very large social areas, such as casinos, hotel lobbies, hallways and lounges. The micro particle mist allows for immediate and long-lasting diffusion into the chosen space. Reduced from liquid form, this fine mist is so effective it is able to penetrate into draperies, textiles and furniture. There are three sizes of the Scent-Styler available depending upon the size of the area in question: the Alpha is for areas up to 10,500 cubic feet; Beta extends the area to up to 21,000 cubic feet and Gamma is for up to 63,000 cubic feet. Each of these can also be installed directly into the HVAC ductwork.

4. Smaller area micro particle mists cold mists

For smaller areas, the Odyssey Continuous Fan Dispenser is the most economical and effective small area vapor treatment dispenser. It is made from high impact, durable polymers and it provides three-way ventilation.

The Odyssey Fan Dispenser is used in conjunction with the mini End Smoke® solid cartridge and it is perfect for smoke odors trapped in guestrooms, hallways and lounges. This dispenser is available in 4 distinctive colors and is offered in battery or high output electric versions.

How to eliminate cigarette smoke odors from a room or car

Unlike smoke from a fire, which we’ll get to shortly, cigarette smoke can be handled with a lesser amount of effort when using effective odor neutralizers combined with cleaning solutions and some good old-fashioned fresh air. If the smell is in a room or a car, it is recommended to clean all of the upholstery and leather, shampoo the carpets, and follow that with a total detail cleaning. Note that for full effectiveness the addition of a smoke odor neutralizer (End Smoke®) into the cleaning solutions should be included, followed by a trigger spray application to all fabric and carpet surfaces. And finally, a thermal fog application should be applied. In the case of a car, this should be done with the windows left closed for several hours. Of course, open the windows and let your care air out for an hour or so before hopping in for a drive again!

Eliminating smoke odors from clothing and furniture

Eliminating smoke odors from clothing is best achieved by placing clothes in a plastic bag sprinkled with baking soda prior to washing in the regular wash cycle with strong detergents and the proper laundry smoke odor additive (End Smoke®). If the odor remains, put it through the cycle again and add vinegar. If the odor persists, try a professional dry cleaner that is familiar with smoke odor removal.

Smoke odors embedded into furniture are a bit trickier to eliminate because there are more components capable of retaining smoke odor, including wooden foundations. Select the proper smoke odor control products for this application. First, a thorough thermal fog application should be applied prior to cleaning, and then the application of a water-based smoke odor neutralizer (always testing the fabric in an inconspicuous area to prevent staining). You may need to apply a new coat of varnish, which will put a new seal on the wood.

Removing smoke odors from tobacco smoke versus fire

When it comes to cleaning up smells from fire smoke, it is important to note that there is a difference between the removal of odors related to smoking and those that are caused by fires. Cigarette smoke can be distasteful for some, but is no where near as harsh and overpowering as smoke caused by fire. Effective odor-removal and clean up from smoke-related incidents whether big or small, will greatly depend upon the type of smoke involved.

How to get rid of fire smoke odors in a commercial environment

Smoke odors from a fire in a house or commercial establishment are more difficult to eliminate and can linger for a very long time after the flames have been extinguished. There are several factors that can greatly influence the severity and diversity of remaining odors.

First and foremost is the size of the fire, as the larger it is, the more extensive the damage. Secondly, the longer any area is exposed to smoke, the deeper the smoke odor can be embedded. The size of the area is also a consideration. The smaller the room, the more intense and concentrated the smoke odors will be. Lastly, the types of materials that have burned create different odors. For example, a wood fire smells differently than one burning plastic materials, so the applications vary from odor to odor and event to event, but in the end, End Smoke® with Metazene® when applied correctly will permanently eliminate all odors caused by smoke.

The most effective products for eliminating smoke odors

Air Scent’s seventy-year history of operations speaks for itself as far as customer satisfaction is concerned. Since the company founder, Bob Surloff invented the first fan-operated air freshener dispenser back in 1946, the company has remained at the forefront of the odor control and air care industry growth and development via research, education and innovation. Always pushing current standards to be better and more effective, Air-Scent remains the only scent products company in the world with its own in-house fragrance division. “The buck ends” here for mistakes and imperfection, as a little sign on the desk of Harry Truman used to read.

“Only you can prevent forest fires” was always the mantra of Smokey the Bear. He was right; that is, of course, if a cartoon character could ever be right, but modern times call for a new mantra or at least an amendment to that one. It should read something like: “Only you can prevent smoke odors from permeating your home or office environment, and if they occur, only you can stop them from getting any worse.”

Always listen to Smokey the Bear, but whether you are a home or a business owner or both, listen to this too.

Final thoughts about smoking: Image of gravestone and caption reads: Smoking Helps You Rest.

For removal of odors other than smoke, be sure to check our complete guide to neutralizing odors in commercial environments.


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