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Getting smoke smell out of books?

Last post Apr 01, 2007 8:37 AM by homesweethome . 9 replies.


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  • Getting smoke smell out of books?
    I bought some cookbooks at a used bookstore. I noticed that they have a strong ordor that smells like cigarette smoke. I have them outside trying to get the smell out. That's not working. Is there any other way to get this smell out?
    If not, I just may have to throw the books in the trash.
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  • RE: Getting smoke smell out of books?
    This happened to some books I bought used once. I sprinkled baking soda between pages and put in a paper bag with a couple of dryer sheets and let them sit for a few months. It took that long but I can no longer smell the smoke. Took a bit to get the baking soda out but it did come.

    Jill
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  • RE: Getting smoke smell out of books?
    Just recently I received a book in the mail from a friend and it reeked of cigarette smoke. She smokes in her home. The first thing I did was set it outside on the patio in the sun standing up to open up the pages. Then I went to Dollar General and bought a Frebreeze-like spray. I thought it was worth a try. I gently spritzed the book while it was standing up open and let it dry. At first it smelled like a clean kind of smoky perfume. Now the scent is gone and so is the smoke smell. It worked on this book.

    In the past I have tried putting newspaper between the pages. Then I wrapped the book in newspaper and put it in a brown bag in the garage. This was another gift and I didn't want to toss it. Took months but it finally worked and I salvaged a cookbook.

    I've heard that people also recommend charcoal briquests for removing odors. Have not tried that though. Hope this helps you save your books.
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  • RE: Getting smoke smell out of books?
    Thank you Jill and Texasrosell! These are great solutions.
    I hate to throw the 4 cookbooks out. One of the cookbooks is Farm Journal's Best Ever Recipes. I was going to bid on the same cookbook yesterday but it was getting to high for what I wanted to pay for it.
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  • RE: Getting smoke smell out of books?
    The Farm Journal's Best Ever Recipes went for $40.00 yesterday. Mine cost .25 cents.
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  • RE: Getting smoke smell out of books?
    Wow, what luck! Congrats on your great find.
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  • RE: Getting smoke smell out of books?
    Texasrosell, I thought so too.
    It looks like rain so I put the cookbooks in the garage because I didn't want to bring them in the house. DH doesn't mind if they're in his garage. I'm going to go buy the Febreeze you mentioned at the Dollar Store and try to get the cigarette smell out with it.
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  • RE: Getting smoke smell out of books?
    I sure hope it works for you. It would be a shame to lose those books to smoke. People who smoke certainly aren't bad folks, but they have no idea how sick that second-hand smell can make those of us who are allergic. Books really soak up that odor. It's a shame. Anyhow, give it a try. Let the books stand somewhere (maybe in the garage) for a while so the pages are open and take it from there. Good luck. Let me know how it goes.
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  • RE: Getting smoke smell out of books?
    I have used the bag & baking soda trick :) just kept the baking soda in its box though with the lid peeled all the way back. Every few days I would shake the soda - felt like I was helping it LOL :)

    If I had to do it again I think I would put the book in a sealable rubbermaid thingy :) and place a shot glass (or such) with vinegar next to it.

    To open the book a bit I would go with crumbled pieces of a paper shopping bag placed between pages here & there to keep it open somewhat.

    I use vinegar a lot to get rid of odors lately and LOVE it, may take a week or so but I am thinking its worth a try.
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    Bethany www.ChrisDouglass.org "Walk far enough, life gets simple. Life gets simple enough, things start to make sense." Chris Douglass
  • RE: Getting smoke smell out of books?
    Flicker13, Thanks for the tips!

    Texasrosell, I haven't bought the Febreeze yet. I'll let you know how it worked as soon as I use them on the cookbooks.
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