How to Naturally Remove Smoke Smells After a Fire

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Things You'll Need

  • Fans

  • Baking soda

  • Broom

  • Vacuum cleaner

  • Washing machine

  • Vinegar

  • Bucket

  • Mop

  • Sponge

  • Household ammonia

  • Baking soda

  • Charcoal

  • Unused coffee grounds


Using store-bought air fresheners will only mask the smoke smells. They will not remove them.

Even though a fire can actually start anywhere in your home, most of them ignite in the kitchen. According to the the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), 30 percent of house fires begin there. Even if a fire is restricted to one room, however, that doesn't mean the rest of your house is unaffected. Smoke travels, especially when a forced-air furnace or an air conditioner is running. After the smoke has been cleared out, it leaves a foul smell behind. There are things you can do to naturally remove smoke smells after a fire.


Step 1

Open the windows and doors to let the fresh air in. Place fans in the windows and/or doorways to pull in clean air and circulate it around your house. Ventilating your house after a fire is a natural, efficient way to help clear the air.

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Step 2

Sprinkle any dry carpets in your house generously with baking soda. Use a broom to work it into the nap. Allow the soda to sit undisturbed overnight. Vacuum the carpets thoroughly the next day until all the baking soda is gone. It should have neutralized the smoke smells in the material from the fire. Repeat the process if necessary.


Step 3

Take stuffed furniture that's covered in fabric outside to the fresh air, if possible. Sprinkle baking soda over each piece. Allow the soda to act on the furniture in the open air for at least several hours, if you can't leave it out overnight. Then, using the soft brush attachment on your vacuum cleaner, sweep the baking soda up completely.

Step 4

Launder curtains, drapes, blankets, sheets, clothing and other washable items after a fire. Use your regular laundry detergent. But, when the rinse cycle begins, add a cup of vinegar to each wash load to naturally remove smoke smells.


Step 5

Wash the affected floors and walls in your home with a solution of ammonia and water. Mix a 1/4-cup of household ammonia into one bucket of water. Use a mop and sponge to wash the floors and walls and make your home smell clean again.

Step 6

Mix up a 1/2-cup of baking soda in a bucket of warm water. Clean appliances, countertops, cabinets and other nonporous surfaces with a sponge to remove smoke smells.

Step 7

Place small bowls filled with vinegar around your home to naturally remove smoke smells from the air after a fire. Setting out charcoal or unused coffee grounds can help absorb the odors as well.



Kayar Sprang

Kayar Sprang has been a professional freelance writer and researcher since 1999. She has had articles published by clients like Kraft Foods, "Woman's Day" magazine and Mom Junction. Sprang specializes in subjects she has expertise in, including gardening and home improvement. She lives on and maintains a multi-acre farm.