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Discussion Starter #1
I'm looking at a car with under 5k miles- prior owner smoked.

The smell is reportedly not bad at all, but it is there. SOme notice it, some don't.

CAN YOU EVER GET IT CLEAN? Such that on a hot day with the AC on recirculate for an hour you won't smell it?

Somebody here should know... you guys know everything else!

Thanks

Ard
 

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Most likely some trace will always be there. Think about all the places it has to hide. It also seems to penetrate into the leather pores. Grab the steering wheel and run your hand on it a bit then smell your hands. It'll most likely leave a smell on your hands. Cleaning it, etc will eventually reduce it to basically nothing. As for fabirc, you can try this...Meguires Odor Eliminator. Since the carpet and headliner are a large majority of the car, I'd say that would be a start. You can also get the ionic breeze car air purifier.
 

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Bummer!! I have a friend who picked up an M5 shortly after I got mine...his prior owner smoked as well. I don't think that you can completely eliminate it...all you can do is try to minimize it.

1) Clean the headliner! That alcantara seems to soak up smoke like a sponge!
2) Buy new floormats
3) Replace your ac filters
4) Flush your ac system
5) Go over and over and over the leather with cleaner/conditioner
6) Spray concentrated deodorizer/freshener into the carpets
7) Replace the rear parcel shelf

My buddy did several of these things, and several hundred dollars later, you can STILL smell the smoke. It's minimal, but it's still there and he's still bummed out about it.

Good luck!!
 

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I think most if not all of it can be eliminated. The trick is to expose it to ozone, I think. You should consult a few of the best high-end detailers for, uh, details.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Need4Spd said:
...consult a few of the best high-end detailers for, uh, details.
Couldn't resist, eh?

:)

I was thinking ozone for many hours might do it as well..

I'm sitting in San Mateo as I write- any local suggestions?

ard
 

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Someone has been smoking in mine as well. It was sold to the car dealer ship on the 29.09 this year, I bought it 07.10, then it selled a lot, but now I would say it has already been reduced by 30-40%. And I done nothing, just been using the car.

But the thing with changing the AC filters might be a good idea.
 

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With record numbers of used cars being sold, I believe there shoud be certain legal disclosures about issues like this. If a car is smoked in, it should be disclosed.
 

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Smoker cars will slowly lose their odor over many years. If you park it indoors, leave the windows open to help. Cleaning the upholstery and deodorizors will help, but some odor is trapped in the foam seat cushions and leather. When you hit a hard bump, odor will actually be expelled from the foam cushions during compression. My mother has a sensitive nose and she noted this effect on a used car we once owned....years after we bought it.

I would also advise you to use the fresh air position instead of recirc. With the nice 5 series filtration system, recirc should seldom be necessary. You need to purge the interior air whenever you're driving it, if you ever expect it to clear out.
 

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That's exactly the reason why I don't buy cars that have been smoked in, you can always smell something. It will take some good cleaning of the interiour. Also cleaning the AC filters and such will help. Take care,
 

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Charlie said:
That's exactly the reason why I don't buy cars that have been smoked in, you can always smell something. It will take some good cleaning of the interiour. Also cleaning the AC filters and such will help. Take care,
I think the "air filtration" is only active when you're in sucking outside air into the cabin thru the under hood filters, in the fresh air mode. If this is the case, recirc will result in no filtration.

The moral of the story is...buy a non-smoker car if you're sensitive to odors. Such a decision is fairly "serious". When you're dishing out about $50K, you may not want stink. My car was owned by a smoker and it still smells like smoke a year later....not as bad tho. It does not bother me, but it IS evident.
 

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ard said:
I'm looking at a car with under 5k miles- prior owner smoked.

The smell is reportedly not bad at all, but it is there. SOme notice it, some don't.

CAN YOU EVER GET IT CLEAN? Such that on a hot day with the AC on recirculate for an hour you won't smell it?

Somebody here should know... you guys know everything else!

Thanks

Ard
Have your AC running and then have a bowl of vinegar (Spelling? :)) sitting in your car. That sometimes work. :M5thumbs:
 

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I had read somewhere about something called an ozone bomb. They set it off in your car and a few hours later all the smell is gone. Ive never seen it done but someone on Roadfly, I think his name was dallas540i6330 had it done and he said it worked.
 

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I have smoke in my VW Jetta since it was new, and the car doesnt smell like smoke inside at all. Heck, my mom who is alergic to smoke commented on the new car smell, when in fact about 1/2 a pack a week is smoked in the car. Here is my 2 cents on the matter.
Keeping the car fresh inside is a proactive and not reactive thing. Dont smoke with the recirc on, always crack a window a small amount (higher pressure differentials than if a window is fully open, so the smoke leaves sooner) and dont leave the butts in the car. Sadly though, if this hasnt been followed, there is little chance of getting it all out of the car.
I'm a smoker and I cant stand the smell of stale smoke in the car. As others have mentioned deep cleaning the car might get some of the smell out, but if that thing was ever smoked in with the recirc on the smell will never get out of the ducting. You'll notice it when the car has been sitting on a hot day and you sit down. It's sad but it almost never goes away.
I guess the question is how much of a discount will allow you to live with a slight odor? If the smell bothers you, it is not worth spending the money on the car if it even slightly detracts from the driving experiance.
Funny though, I will gladly smoke in a Jetta, but I dont think I would ever smoke close to a nice car like a BMW. Different strokes for different folks I guess.
:cheers:
 

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Discussion Starter #14
If I'm paying top dollar for a car with 3800 miles- that I may drive for may years -I don't want to be reminded of a rash decision as I sit in the CA sun with the windows shut... Thanks for the advise- if I do proceed it would be with the caveat that the dealer will clean it, AND NOT USE ANY PERFUMES OR SPRAYS- I'll take it for a 'test smell' and proceed from there!

Thanks

Ard
 

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ard said:
If I'm paying top dollar for a car with 3800 miles- that I may drive for may years -I don't want to be reminded of a rash decision as I sit in the CA sun with the windows shut... Thanks for the advise- if I do proceed it would be with the caveat that the dealer will clean it, AND NOT USE ANY PERFUMES OR SPRAYS- I'll take it for a 'test smell' and proceed from there!

Thanks

Ard
Imagine the smell after getting in the car after it has sat in the sun for awhile with the windows rolled up or partially cracked......barf ! That thought alone would deter me from the purchase. hmmm
 
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