Blog Cigarette Smoke Damage

Published on November 24th, 2013 | by Grant Barnard


Painting Over Nicotine Smoke Damaged Walls or Ceilings

Painting over nicotine smoke damage is very difficult if the correct process is not followed. Nicotine smoke damage will soak through any topcoat paint around. It will even soak through two in one paints with primer in it. However, you may be able to paint over it with two coats of any typical paint. The key is to determine just how bad it is, and what your expectations are. Usually your expectations can be met with fewer coats IF you have the correct information. This how to article  will give you the best options to cover the nicotine damaged and meet those expectations. In Indianapolis? If you don’t want to undertake this on your own then please contact Grants Painting, an Indianapolis Painter that will serve you well.

Grants Painting

5508 Elmwood Avenue Suite #320
Indianapoolis, IN, 46203
United States (US)
Phone: (317) 800-4540

Smoke Damaged Color Chart

Colors That Represent The Levels Of Cigarette Smoke Damage:

Tulip is the least smoke damage. Imperial Yellow is moderate. Mustard Gold is the worst smoke damage. We will be giing you a “Good” option and a “Best” option.


Tulip – Lightly Smoke Damaged Walls or Ceilings

  • Good – The good option for painting over light cigarette smoke damage is simple. Two coats of good quality paint will cover the color and smell if your on a budget.
  • Best – The best option is to use a very high quality paint such as PPG Silkin Touch and let the first coat dry completely. Then be sure to use a new roller for the second coat. A primer can be used for optimal results(primer makes everything better).

Imperial Yellow – Medium Cigarette  Damage Ceilings or Walls

  • Good – A good option is to use an affordable PVA primer to cover the smoke damage and then cover with two coats of a decent quality paint.
  • Best – The best option is to use a high quality acrylic primer like Seal Grip Universal Acrylic Primer. Then a high quality topcoat with two coats will totally seal the nicotine smoke damage.

Mustard Gold – Heavy Cigarette Smoke Damage

  • Good – A good option is a very high quality primer like Seal Grip Universal Acrylic Primer or Alkyd Primer. Then two coats of a medium quality paint.
  • Best – The best option is to use an alkyd or oil primer to block the heavy stains. A second coat of primer should be rolled on without cutting in to give two coats of primer on the majority of the wall or ceiling. Then two coats of the highest quality paint and your smoke damage problems are gone=.

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About the Author

Grant Barnard started painting in 2000 and started Grants Painting in 2008. Originally doing business in northern Indiana, the business was moved to Indianapolis and Greenwood shortly after. Today the Grants Painting has blossomed into a reputable painting contracting company with an ever growing extensive website including our How To DIY Articles. Grants Painting covers all aspects of coatings and specialized in epoxy flooring, interior painting, exterior painting and cabinet painting.

  • solemnone

    Smoke damage must be washed with t.s.p. followed by a full coat of Bin Shellac Primer and then painted. No acrylics will seal smoke stains or odors completely, and no oil-based sealer is as effective as shellac

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