Carpets tend to absorb all types of odors. If you are in the unfortunate circumstance of noticing that your carpets smell like smoke, it's important to act quickly; the longer the smell is in the fibers of the carpet, the less likely it is that you'll be able to remove the odor. It's also vital to know when it's possible to remove smoke odor on your own and when it's time to call in a professional.
Burned Food Smell
If you've ever burned popcorn or toast, you know how difficult it can be to banish the smell from your home. Airing out the house by opening the windows will go a long way toward dissipating the odor, but if it has settled in your carpets, you're going to need to take it a step further. Try sprinkling the carpets liberally with baking soda. Use a broom to push the powder into the carpet, then vacuum it up. You might need to repeat this step, but it should remove most of the burned food smell from the fibers.
If you smoke cigarettes, it's possible that you don't notice the odor in the carpets. If you are ready to move or you are doing your spring cleaning, however, cleaning the carpets to remove the smell is wise, even if you can't detect it on your own. Ask an honest friend to give your carpets the sniff test if you're unsure.
The baking soda strategy might work on cigarette smells, and airing out the home will definitely take the edge off. Another trick to try is to place bowls of vinegar around the rooms with carpet; the vinegar will soak up any unpleasant odors. (Don't worry; the vinegar smell will disappear quickly after you remove the vinegar.) You can also try vacuum powder, but be aware that the effect of masked odor will not last very long.
House Fire Smoke
If you've had even a small house fire, it's likely that the carpets in the home smell strongly of smoke. This can be true for carpets on the other side of the house, far away from where the fire was. A house fire is a reason to call a fire restoration company. It's very unlikely that you will be able to remove this thick, heavy odor from your soft flooring. While the restoration company is there, they can also remove the smoke smell from the walls, upholstery and other parts of the home.
Smoke smell in carpets is difficult to remove, but the effort is worth it, Be aware that even if you replace the carpets, some odor may linger in the wood underneath the padding, so don't count on flooring replacement to be a surefire solution. Call a fire restoration company like Western Skies Restoration Inc to help you decide on your best course of action.