Everyone loves a good curry but the smell it leaves behind, maybe not.

Posted by Sarah Brown on

How to remove lingering cooking odours starting with one of the hardest.

All of us grow accustomed to the odours around us. Our olfactory system becomes desensitised, and we hardly notice them.

However, step into a different home or apartment and we immediately notice any odour.

For this reason, lingering cooking odour can make a recently vacated apartment hard to rent or a home hard to sell. Spicy curry odours are among the most difficult to remove. Curry refers to the spicy gravy dishes of Indian origin, not just the spice sold as Curry Powder. The same principles can be used for odour from fish, onions, or other strong cooking odours.


Don’t expect a quick spray of any product to remove every trace of odour.

Materials that have absorbed odours for many months or even years will not give them up easily. In some cases, painting or sealing will be required. In extreme situations, some materials may require replacement.

You’ll need to follow the four basic steps of odour control – Remove the source; Clean affected surfaces; Recreate the conditions; Seal any odours that cannot be removed.


Numerous surfaces can absorb and later re-emit odours. Complete floor to ceiling cleaning may be required. Use a cleaner appropriate for each surface.   

Textured or acoustical ceilings can be cleaned with Dry Cleaning Sponges.   

Use a solution of Bridgepoint Smoke & More Vission for walls and hard surfaces.  Add 4 ounces of Hydrocide Xtreme to each gallon of cleaning solution.   

Bridgepoint Smoke & More Vission can be used to clean wood floors and finished wood cabinets.  Removing soils and built-up cooking oils goes a long way to removing odours.

Add a small amount of Hydrocide Xtreme to liquid furniture polish when cleaning wood furniture.   

All surfaces of the range exhaust hood and any filter there must be cleaned.   

Don’t forget to change HVAC filters. Even debris in the ducts can hold odours. The duct work may need to be cleaned with the Air-Care DuctMaster III.


Unfinished wood surface such as the inside of cabinets and drawers should be cleaned. When odours have penetrated deeply, you can lightly sand the surface. After cleaning wipe, the sur-face lightly with Hydrocide Xtreme.


Carpets should be hot water extraction cleaned with an appropriate prespray and rinse agent depending on the fibre and soils. Bridgepoint Zone Perfect and Bridgepoint End Zone make a great combination for most carpets. Add Hydrocide Xtreme to your prespray at 4 ounces per gallon.


If any trace of odour remains in the carpet, Hydrocide Xtreme can also be applied as a post cleaning spray.


Now it’s time to recreate the conditions that caused the odour. Vaportek’s dry vapor is the best way to do this without potential problems of thermal fogging.  The SOS cartridges (Smoke Odour Solution) work well at removing the final traces of cooking odours. Depending on the size of the room and the severity of the odour, the Stand-Alone Cartridges, the Restorator or the Vapor Shark will be the right delivery system.


Ventilate the structure.  Open windows, use ceiling fans or air movers to pull air out of the building and allow fresh air to flow in.


The Titan 4000 Hydroxyl Generator can be used as a final step if necessary.


Painting, sealing or replacement of some surfaces may still be required.



Cleaning Agents


  • Spotting Towels (absorbent white cotton)
  • Air Movers