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16 ways to smoke in a non-smoking apartment


Smoke in a non-smoking apartment

Today, more and more landlords are restricting smoking in their apartments. This means it is getting harder and harder for smokers to enjoy a cigarette where they live, even in the comfort of their homes. 

If you are a smoker, of course, the simple solution here is to find an apartment that does not have any smoking restrictions. This may not always be possible, though. There are ways around these restrictions if you currently live in a non-smoking apartment, and this will be the focus of this guide. 

Here are the 16 ways to smoke in a non-smoking apartment:

1. Ask for clarification from your landlord


asking landlord

A lot of landlords use boiler-plate leases. These are one-size-fits-all leases that any landlord can use because they cover pretty much the same general things that need to be covered. 

Therefore, before you sign your lease, even if smoking is not allowed on paper, do not be afraid to ask your landlord to clarify about smoking. Instead of revealing that you are a smoker, you can phrase the inquiry into asking about what would happen if you had to entertain smoking guests. 

In some cases, they may be OK with discrete occasional smoking. If your landlord does allow discrete smoking, ask to get that in writing. 

2. Find out what will happen if you smoke


The lease or rental agreement that you sign will specify what will happen if you smoke. Find out if you get a written reprimand or if you will be evicted. Signing the lease or rental agreement means you agree to these repercussions. 

If you will be evicted if you smoke, also find out if you will get your security deposit back. In most cases, if the no-smoking clause is in the lease or rental agreement, your landlord may be able to evict you if you smoke. If the no-smoking clause is not in the lease or rental agreement, your landlord can only evict you if you are caught repeatedly smoking despite multiple warnings. 

3. Find alternatives to smoke-heavy smoking


smoking e-cigarettes

Instead of lighting up a cigarette, have you considered vaping or e-cigarettes? They are great alternatives that will allow you to satisfy your cravings without the smoke or odor that cigarettes are known for. Plus, neighbors are less likely to complain about them. 

4. Smoke in the bathroom


smoking in a bathroom

The bathroom is a great place to smoke in an apartment for many reasons. First, tile floors do not absorb cigarette smoke much as carpeted floors. Second, your bathroom exhaust fan conveniently removes all bathroom smells, including the smoke you produce. Third, when you turn on the shower as you smoke, the hot steam will absorb the smoke and reduce its smell. 

5. Escape-proof your apartment


Every time you light up, ensure that as little smoke as possible escapes your apartment. You can do this by keeping your windows closed, putting a wet towel under your door, and closing your air vents to prevent the smoke from being drawn into other apartments. 

6. Locate the smoke detector


smoke detector

When you first move into your apartment, you need to know where all the smoke detectors are. Be sure to avoid smoking near them to avoid setting off any fire alarms. Setting off a fire alarm is one of the fastest ways to get caught because when your custodian or landlord comes to investigate, they will notice the lingering cigarette smell. 

That said, never disable the smoke detector. While it may be inconvenient when living as a smoker, disabling it may prove deadly if your apartment catches fire. 

7. Smoke at the edge of the property


In theory, the edge of the property is technically neutral territory that you can smoke on. However, before you do, make sure to carry out your research first. You may be able to smoke on the driveway or at the edge of the property. In highrises, you may be able to smoke on the sidewalk outside the entrance. However, note that some cities mandate a non-smoking perimeter around the entrance of every apartment. 

8. Talk to your neighbors


neighbors talking

If you are a smoker, you need to speak to your next-door neighbors. Find out if they may be sensitive to the faint smoke odor that might seep through common kitchen or bathroom walls. Find out if they will mind if you smoked on the balcony when they were not on theirs. Be friendly and as accommodating as you can. 

9. Find other smokers in the building


Chances are, you are not the only smoker in your building. You’ll only find these other smokers if you talked to all your neighbors. Be friendly; once you find other smokers, they will tell you where they smoke. They may even give you interesting tips for smoking in your apartment!

10. Smoke a little less indoors


While it is tempting to smoke for longer, the longer your smoking sessions last, the more smoke gets released in the air and the higher the chances that someone will find out. This is why you want to limit yourself to short smoking sessions in the house and limit the long luxurious ones to the outdoors or your car. 

11. Buy an ozone air purifier


ozone air purifier

Ozone is a gas that is created high in the atmosphere by ultraviolet radiation. It is also created when electricity passes through oxygen. This is why thunderstorms have a certain signature smell. Lightning charges oxygen and adds an extra atom to its configuration, resulting in the formation of ozone. 

Ozone is an unstable gas that wants to shed the extra atom it has and go back to being oxygen. When ozone floats in the air, the extra atom will break off and attach itself to any contaminants. In this case, it will attach itself to the cigarette smoke that lingers in the air. This creates an unstable reaction and a tiny explosion that breaks down both the atom and the smoke particle. 

This explains why gambling casinos have massive ozone generators to purify the air. There are also smaller commercially available ones that you can use to purify the air in your apartment. 

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12. Invest in ozone sprays


ozone spray

Ozone sprays are aerosol sprays that are filled with ozone gas. Spraying them releases ozone into the air, breaking down any smoke particles outlined above. This is a much better solution than deodorant sprays that only mask the smell of the smoke. If you use a fan along with the ozone spray, the ozone gas will spread out over even longer distances, and the smoke particles will dissipate faster. 

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13. Use an air purifier


Air purifiers are a more budget-friendly alternative to ozone generators. They are commonly used by people who have allergies to deal with pollen, dust, and pet dander. They are also quite effective when dealing with cigarette smoke particles. 

Air purifiers work by sucking the air into itself, purifying it to trap odors and toxic particles before releasing it back into your apartment. They will trap all smoke particles and leave you with a much fresher-smelling apartment. Go for air purifiers that use activated charcoal or carbon filters. 

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14. Use a personal air filter


Personal air filters are great because they are compact and convenient and allow you to keep smoking as you normally would. However, instead of blowing the smoke into the air, you blow it into your air filter. This reduces the secondhand smoke that is usually released every time you exhale by a huge margin. 

15. Hide the smoke smell


This is a less effective solution than others on this list, but it can still be quite effective. Invest in scented candles, essential oil diffusers, and air fresheners to mask the smell of cigarette smoke every time you smoke. Suppose you have an essential oil diffuser, scented candle, and plug-in air freshener going at all times. In that case, whether you are smoking or not, they can become your apartment’s signature scent and make it easier to hide the odor of your smoking. 

16. Burn popcorn in the microwave


popcorn in microwave

This is a trick that will come in handy when you need a quick fix for how to hide the smell of cigarette smoke in your apartment. However, you can’t always rely on it all the time because you can’t simply become that tenant who loves popcorn but constantly burns it every day. That said, the smell of burning popcorn will effectively hide the smell of cigarette smoke until you can properly get rid of it using the other methods on this list. 

What about the smell that lingers on you?


Sometimes, you are your own worst enemy when trying to hide the fact that you are smoking in your apartment from everyone. The smell of smoke clings to your hair and your clothes. However, you are probably immune to this smell by now. This means you may have a constant smell of cigarette smoke hanging about you all the time. If your neighbors and landlord keep smelling it on you every time you run into them, they may become suspicious. 

So how can you minimize the amount of smoke that clings to you? Well, you can have special smoking outfits that include tank tops and shorts as opposed to shirts, sweaters, long pants, and skirts. If you have long hair, have it in a ponytail or a bun when you smoke. Shampoo your hair, brush your teeth, and try not to chew gum constantly; it is a dead giveaway! And every time you leave your apartment, change your clothes and put on something from your closet or dresser that has been untouched by the smoke smell.

How to get rid of the cigarette smoke smell in your apartment


If you are an avid smoker, you probably already know how much cigarette smoke can permeate all the surfaces in your home and last a very long time. The good news is there are certain things you can do to get rid of the smoke smell in the apartment. This will come in handy in lots of different situations. For example, if you are moving out and want your landlord to be none the wiser about your smoking habit so you can get your deposit back, this should help. 

1. Absorb the smoke from the air


Fill up several bowls with vinegar, coffee grounds, or baking soda. Leave them open in different areas around the apartment. They will absorb all the smoke in those areas over that time. 

Another great alternative is to fill a big pot with vinegar and then bring it to a boil on your stove. Once it starts to boil, switch to low heat and let the steam slowly fill up the air in your apartment to eliminate any smells. 

2. Use a steam cleaning machine


You can also rent a steam cleaning machine to clean large surfaces faster. Steam cleaners work well on hard surfaces, and you can wipe the area up with a rag or mop. You can also use a steam cleaner to clean sofas, chairs, carpets, and mattresses. 

3. Change out the lightbulbs


If the apartment has been smoked in for a long time, the bulbs will also accumulate some smoke residue. Every time you turn them on, they heat up and gradually release the nicotine back into the air. Changing the light bulbs is a simple solution to this problem. 

4. Hang up some activated charcoal in your apartment


bamboo charcoal

Hang a few bags of activated charcoal around your apartment. Activated charcoal is easily available at any home improvement store. The carbon molecules in the activated charcoal will trap any floating smoke particles, freshening up the air. 

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5. Deep clean the house


Open all the windows and place portable fans in front of them to help circulate air throughout the apartment. 

Next, spray your floors, walls, windows, and ceilings with a 1:1 mixture of hot water and vinegar. If smoke residue has built up on these surfaces, use a solution of a quarter cup vinegar, half cup baking soda, half cup ammonia, and one gallon of water. Wash all surfaces with this solution to get the smell completely off them. 

The next step is to take care of the fabrics. Throw your curtains, beddings, and even sofa covers if you have them into the washing machine. Add half a cup of vinegar along with your regular washing solution, then hang everything outside in the sun. UV rays will further break down any lingering smoke particles in the fabric. 

If you have soft furnishings that cannot be washed, like rugs and lampshades, cover them in a layer of baking soda, then vacuum them after 24 hours. 

Tiled surfaces can be cleaned with a solution of nine parts water to one part bleach. Rinse them with fresh water afterward. 

6. Repaint the apartment


Once you clean your apartment, you can give it a fresh coat of paint to eliminate the smoke smell. Your landlord may even pay for the paint and supplies or split the cost with you. Painting, even if you have to do it yourself, will not only get rid of any lingering smells but also cover any brown stains that often build up over the years. There are also odor-blocking primers that you can use before the actual coat of paint that will take things a step further if you are dealing with particularly stubborn odors. 

Final Thoughts


Sometimes, you have no choice but to live in a non-smoking apartment as a smoker. With the tips and tricks outlined above, this should be a little easier for you to achieve without having to live in constant fear of being found out.

Related article:

How Can Apartments Tell if You Smoke?

Can Cigarette Smoke Travel Through Apartments?

What Does It Mean When Apartments Say Smoke-free?

How Do You Get Rid of Secondhand Smoke in an Apartment?

Last update on 2022-07-03 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Zoltan Szatmari

Zoltan is a test and industrial engineer from Europe who loves learning anything new and working on small projects. When he is not working, he is usually hiking or going to the cinema.

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