I currently live in an older, moderate sized one bedroom/bath apartment which I think was previously occupied by a smoker. It was repainted and had new carpet installed before I moved in but the smell is still very much there when the windows/doors have been closed for a day or more. The weather has been nice enough since I moved in that I've been able to keep a few windows open to let a cross breeze keep the air circulating which has minimized the oder. With winter approaching I was hoping to get some tips on how to keep it smelling fresh though since I won't be able to do that in the cold (can't afford to lose the heat by opening windows then running the heater to make it bearable).
Generally I avoid adding oils/scents to the air in such a small apartment but I can't stand that closed up smell. Any advice or tips would be greatly appreciated!
Sprinkle baking soda on all of the carpets and let sit for a day. Then vacuum. Place fabric softener sheets behind the sofa/chairs etc, and leave them. They absorb odor. (Works great in cars as well.) Change furnace filters to hypoallergenic ones.
You may be getting drift from one of the neighboring apartments. That's what happened at my place once I moved upstairs from some smokers.
My utilities were included with the lease so leaving the windows and doors wide open didn't cost me any money, it was just annoying. (and cold in January)
I used some pretty powerful incense and burned it in front of my furnace air intake so I'm sure it drifted down to them - they started smoking in their bathroom - Yuck! and opening their own sliding glass door.
Repainting doesn't do a whole lot to kill a smell if they fail to prep the surfaces by washing, and I really doubt my complex did as my paint peeled right off a couple of interior doors and they painted right over hairspray gook on the bathroom fan vent. And if you have old carpet sometimes the smell sticks there too especially if they don't do a good cleaning job. Honestly I think some complexes get ripped off by their cleaning services.
Smoke smell will linger on any fabric item so curtains are a big culprit, and blinds if they weren't washed, also your kitchen cabinets and any non-painted surfaces.
Good luck. I remember coming home from a trip and expecting to smell saddle leather as I'd left it out in the LR - instead my whole apartment smelled like a cigarette butt and I made a fast trip to Pier One.
Talk to your Landlord. They may be able to help you resolve the problem, no Landlord wants to lose a good tenant.
Also go over your lease with a fine tooth comb, in some states they may be forced to resolve the issue to YOUR satisfaction. You will never know if you don't ask!!!!
I reject your reality, and substitute my own- Adam Savage
If there is popcorn or other textured ceiling the smell is probably in there. And I second the idea that it's coming from another apartment, especially if there is a common air duct system for heat or A/C.