Do you remember the first time you bought your car? Did it feel and smell good? Well, it’s all history now, especially when unusual odors like smoke linger in your vehicle.
The smoke smell can be annoying as it may last longer inside your car if not given immediate action. Thankfully, there are tips on eliminating odor nuances like cigarette smoke. So read on to have your car smell fresh and new!
Health Risks of Smoke Smell
Health issues associated with smoke smell are not a secret. According to Jelic, S., at least 7,000 chemicals are found in cigarette smoke. There are 250 which are harmful, and at least 70 chemicals are carcinogenic via cigarettes or e-cigarettes.
The chemicals below cause severe damage to your health, targeting major organs that cause diseases. Conditions such as but not limited to heart disease, lung diseases, and even death are associated with the severity of the exposure.
Chemicals in Cigarettes
Cigarettes include carcinogens, toxic metals, radioactive, toxic metals, and poisonous substances. Among others, acetaldehyde, benzene, and formaldehyde cause cancer, and at least 250 toxic gases, such as nicotine and carbon monoxide, are present.
Toxic metals and metal compounds, including arsenic and cadmium, are hazardous when taken in large amounts. In addition, poisonous and radioactive metals introduce additional harm, such as lead–210 and polonium–210.
Different Smoking Risk
The smoke inhaled directly by the smoker using any tobacco product pertains to first-hand smoke. Smoke from e-cigarettes, hookahs, and pipes displays the same effects and urgency. According to Mahassni S.H. & Ali, E.Y.I., first-hand smoke kills at least five million active smokers, in a year.
Second-hand smoke pertains to the exhaled smoke by the smoker and the dispersed smoke from used tobacco and other devices. The most likely affected population is young children caused by exposure to adults smoking at home. Second-hand smoke kills at least 600,000 passive smokers in a year.
Third-hand smoke, on the other hand, refers to the toxic residue buildup of second-hand smoke on fabrics, furniture, and vehicles. Young children are more prone to contact with contaminated surfaces. According to NEHA, tobacco use is responsible for 20% of cancer deaths and causes at least 10 million deaths every year.
Research shows that the longer second-hand smoke stays in the environment, the higher the smoke poses a health threat. The issues presented are even more of a reason to eliminate the smoke or exhaust smell from your space, primarily inside your car.
Reasons for Smoke Smell
An apparent cause of car smoke smell came from cigarette smoke remnants, or other smoking means. However, exhaust smells besides cigarette odor, such as sulfur and gasoline, can also happen.
Cigarette smoke tends to penetrate and stick over time onto the surfaces and air system of the car. These unpleasant odors are often overlooked, and here are the following reasons your vehicle may smell:
1. Poor air circulation of vents
2. Dirty and clogged in-cabin air filter
3. Old filters
4. Dirty HVAC systems
5. Leathers and surfaces not cleaned properly
How Does Its Chemical Reaction Work?
As mentioned previously, cigarettes contain certain chemicals that produce smoke from the mixture of chemical compounds. According to the NCBI, burning cigarette smoke refers to the concentrated aerosol of gases. It includes oxygen, carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, and nitrogen.
Combustion happens during smoke formation once a cigarette is lit via fuel (tobacco) and oxygen combination. This process includes high heat that causes the breakdown of toxic substances in cigarette smoke.
To effectively remove malodors, including cigarette smoke, consider the chemical reaction between the products and the smoke. A solid deodorizing composition like ester compounds can react and neutralize the smell due to helpful constituents: carbon, sulfur, and alcohol. Such compositions make it easier for deodorizers to eliminate unpleasant odors like cigarette smoke.
If you are looking for a solid, sophisticated car deodorizer, you may want to try on spritzing a pure Egyptian Musk Essential oil on your next ride!
Tips on Getting Rid of Smoke Smell in Your Car
Understanding how the elimination of smoke works can prevent unnecessary waste of effort, time, and even cost. If smoking is unavoidable at home, third-hand smoke accumulates and usually stays for months or longer.
To remove cigarette smoke in your house, open your windows and doors and keep your fan running. As much as possible, disinfect and clean walls, tiles, surfaces, and furniture with deodorizers such as vinegar and baking soda.
Clean or replace filters as they begin to trap dirt at least once a month. You can also add remedies such as scented candles and perfumed aerosols in your home for temporarily masking odors.
Smoke smell can also linger in your car, and that closed space can maintain the shelf-life of the odor. To remove the cigarette smoke smell from your vehicle, follow the following tips below:
Tip # 1: Eliminate Source
The first thing you have to do is get rid of any residues of cigarettes, such as ashes. Then, sweep inside your car, wash your ashtrays now and then, and let them air dry for a day.
After removing visible cigarette remnants, vacuum soft surfaces that tend to absorb smoke to eliminate scent-clinging particles. Vacuum corners, under the seats, in between openings, and difficult-to-reach areas, including underneath floor mats.
Tip # 2: Use Cleaning Solutions and Fragrance Oils
Clean hard surfaces such as car windows and mirrors using chemical deodorizers to remove organic and inorganic stains and smells. You can also apply such cleaning solutions to soft surfaces such as car seats/leathers and carpets. You can also use car freshies and fragrance oil such as Lick Me All Over fragrance oil for a sweet treat.
Natural remedies such as charcoal are also effective if you opt for something environmentally friendly. Vinegar and water solution, bleach and water solution, hydrogen peroxide, and water solution are common deodorizers for car seats and carpets.
Tip # 3: Ventilate Area
As basic as it is, this is a helpful way to freshen up your vehicle if you must smoke inside your car, at least smoke with your windows open.
Spray within the car using Febreeze, especially on the seats, that aids in reducing smoke odor. Complete this tip by opening your car doors to allow recirculation of air. Then, turn on your vents and wait for the self-circulation system to finish for an hour.
Tip # 4: Try Cleaning Tricks
Your car serves as your 'mini house,' and incorporating scented items will improve your car's air quality and smell. For example, sprinkle baking soda on all surfaces, including floors and seats, to suck up the residual smell left overnight. Additionally, coffee grounds have components such as nitrogen, a known air-born odor neutralizer as an alternative to baking soda.
The natural cleaning properties of citrus peels, such as oranges, limes, and the like, provide a refreshing smell. Keep the peels open while simmering them in water for better results. Dryer sheets are also helpful, especially for 'quick-fix' solutions to wipe off surfaces and mask odors.
Tip # 5: Replace Filters
Replace old and dirty air filters to remove odors trapped in air vents. The cigarette’s particulate matter can clog the filters causing the smoke smell. Remove things from your glove box before sliding them off its hinges to remove the filter. Throw out the used smoke-saturated filter and insert a new air filter.
Proceed to deodorize your HVAC system to eliminate the smoke scent. Set another self-system air filtration and place your fans at the highest level while your temperature is at the lowest. Turn off your ignition once you start to spray a deodorizer right into the HVAC air intake and instead open your windows.
Smoke odors in cars can spoil your ride, and a scent makeover is an answer. Remember to remove the culprit of the smoke smell and use products appropriate for specific car parts for it to be effective. Also, take note of any signs suggesting your filters be changed to promote good air quality.
As much as possible, avoid smoking inside your car to save the trouble of lingering cigarette smoke. Besides, your health is the utmost priority, and not maintaining a healthy environment exposes you to certain risks.
To know more on how you can solve other smell problems in your car like get rid of weed smell read more on our blog! Then, make sure to follow our page for more!