The Log Home Neighborhood

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Hi everyone. My wife and I are considering purchasing a real log home but there is one problem with it. The existing owner has lived in it for 25 years and smoked cigarettes inside the entire time. We have no idea if it would be possible to get rid of the smell. There are currently only one or two windows that open to air it out. Has anyone dealt with this issue? Specifically wondering about issues with the logs as we plan to rip out carpet etc. Thanks in advance for any help!

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We had a customer who had this same issue, and another who had an issue with the burn smell from a small home fire. A few things they told us:

1) It's hard to get the smell out of the logs themselves without pretty major work being done. One customer had to soda blast the wood to get rid of the smell. This can get pricey, but is probably your best bet with the logs themselves. As for other surfaces....

2) There are products out there that cover up the smoke smell. They may also cover up the wood itself. Research "odor blocking coatings" online for more suggestions. Painters have to deal with this kind of thing regularly, as do apartment maintenance supervisors. There are products out there that work, but whether or not they'll leave the logs looking like logs is the question.

3) I was told by both that Febreze is a miracle worker. :-)

Hope that helps a little bit. Good luck with making a decision!

-- Charis w/ Sashco

Hi Nick,

We have had many customers with this issue as well. We usually direct them to our Sure Shine ,Water-Based Poly Finish. While it is not as breathable as our Acrylic Satin or Acrylic Gloss that fact can also be a benefit in that it will help lock in and smoke, food, or pet odors that have already permeated the wood.

Also if you are ripping out the carpet you can think about having the interior soda blasted. Soda blasting does a great job of removing smoke scent.

If you would like a free sample of Sure Shine, or would like more information you can email me at kevin@permachink.com

Good luck with your project!

Kevin, PCS Redmond

The smell of the smoke is left over in the soot which is resinous and builds over time on the smokers lungs, clothing, and surroundings. The unpleasant smell is bothersome to non-smokers because the soot is acidic. The good news is that you can neutralize an acid with a base. Being as these are logs I would recommend a baking soda media blasting of the interior logs. Baking soda is basic and will neutralize the acidic soot quite well and eliminate 99.99% of the smoke smell.

Log Home Finishing
Fairplay, CO

You might contact the Servicemaster folks, who professionally deal with this issue after fires, both commercially and residentially.  With stud construction, they paint over the charred area, replace drywall, use large ion type machines, etc.  They might provide an estimate for this service.  

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