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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

How to Get Rid of Smoke Odor

10/5/2020 (Permalink)

Now listen… we know things happen! But did you get caught up in some really intense scene on your favorite TV show and forgot about that pot of yummy food on the stove? Or maybe your toaster oven cooked that pizza a little faster than you expected? Sure enough, now your house smells like burnt food and that smell just won't go away! Before you grab that air freshener, hear us out!! 

    • Confirm the situation is under control: Before worrying about the odor, make sure there isn't an actual fire. Burnt food often smokes without catching on fire, but you don't want the situation to get out of hand if there are flames. Remove the pan from the burner and let it cool. Make sure the food is no longer burning or producing more smoke.
  • Air out the house: Burnt food smoke inhalation isn't good for your lungs, so start by clearing out the smoke. Open windows in rooms close by, give the smoke and odor a place to go. Run ceiling fans and use box fans in the windows to help pull the smoke and odor out of the room faster. You can also run the vent on your fan hood and the exhaust fans in any nearby bathrooms.
  • Remove the source of the smell: You’ve got to remove the burnt food to remove the burnt smell in the home. Once its cools COMPLETELY, dump the food into a trash bag, seal it, and remove from the home. If the pan is salvageable, soak it in hot, soapy water to release the burnt-on food, then scrub any remaining food off. Boiling water and vinegar in the pan can help soften the burnt spots. Scrubbing the pan with baking soda can also help clean it due to the gentle abrasive quality of the powder.
  • Neutralize the burnt pan smell in the home: Don’t grab that air freshener yet! Air fresheners and candles just add scent to the mix without actually removing the bad smell. The combination of the burnt, smoky odor and the fragrance can sometimes smell worse than the burnt odor alone. Try something a little more natural to help remove the odor from the air! Bring water and white vinegar to a boil on the stove, and reduce the heat so it simmers. You can also add whole spices or fresh lemon slices to the boiling water for a natural scent. Coffee grounds and baking soda placed out in a container can help soak up bad odors.
  • Wipe Down Surfaces: Smoke particles tend to stick to all areas of the home, which makes the smell linger. Be sure to clean all of the surfaces in your kitchen to help remove the odor. Wipe the stove, countertop, cabinets and walls with a warm, soapy water mixture or all-purpose cleaner. Choose cleaning products that are safe for specific surfaces, such as wood cabinetry or stone countertops.

Wash Fabric Items: As we said before, odors and smoke particles like to stick to all areas of the home, especially fabric items. Wash all items that came in contact with the smoke such as curtains, tablecloths, and flooring. If your carpets or rugs take on the burnt odor, sprinkle baking soda over them. Give the baking soda a few hours to soak up the smell. Vacuum the carpet well to remove all of the baking soda.

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