Auto Detailing 101 General discussion of auto cleaning and detailing. Learn tips and tricks to keep your Ford Ranger looking its best.

Smoke smell

Old 09-02-2017
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: Germantown
Posts: 1
Smoke smell

Just bought a 99 xlt regular cab and the previous owner smoked like a factory in it. Now when I turn on the a/c it blows a stinky, stale smoke smell. How do I get rid of the smell?
Old 09-02-2017
RF Veteran
iTrader: (1)
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Vancouver, BC
Posts: 13,060
Welcome to the forum

Rangers don't have cabin filters on the fresh air vent like most vehicles

But what you can do is to get an Odor "killer" spray, your choice
Start engine and turn A/C on and fan to high, do NOT turn on MAX A/C
MAX A/C closes the fresh air vent, actually that's all it does, lol.

Now outside the cab on passenger side between hood and windshield are some holes or vent slots
Spray the odor killer into the holes toward passenger side, thats where the fresh air vent is located
With fan on high it will suck in the odor killer
Change vent selection to try and get it in all passages

It won't be a one treatment thing, you will need to repeat it several times
Old 11-30-2018
Sonic2004's Avatar
Join Date: May 2018
Location: Macedonia, Ohio
Posts: 46
McGuire's sells an air freshener that is heavy duty. You activate the aerosol can, turn the fan on hi, shut the doors and leave it for 15 minutes. I just used it on my 04 and it worked great. It circulates thru the entire system. They recommend that you open the windows for a period of time right after the process. It is worth a shot.
Old 11-30-2018
Bird76Mojo's Avatar
iTrader: (2)
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Central, IL.
Posts: 1,403
Any time you run the heater, it's likely to "re-activate" the tar and nicotine in the HVAC duct work under the dash. The only 100% sure way would be to remove the dash and take the HVAC ducting out and clean the insides with heavy detergent and hot water.

Not that other methods won't work to reduce the smell, but it'll never be completely gone as long as the insides of the ducting has a coating of tar/nicotine.

GB :)
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