Globe Magazine

Four ways to keep marijuana from smelling up your home

Neighbors obviously enjoying legal, recreational pot? You can’t call the cops and complain, but you can try some other methods.

Jason Schneider for the Boston Globe

A skunk-like smell wafts in from next door, which means your neighbor is baking again, and it isn’t a pie. Even if you favored legalizing marijuana, you might not want your days to be hazy. Here’s how to get relief.

1. Block the smell, don’t mask it.

A shot of air freshener may seem the most direct counter to the odor, but it means more chemicals in your air, says Joseph Pellegrine, owner of Look’N Good Cleaning Service in Newton. Instead, he recommends closing windows on the side of the house you share with your neighbor, and opening other windows to air out the space. For apartment dwellers, if the smell is entering from the hallway, put a draft stopper or similar object under the door. Or ask the neighbor to seal his or her door.

2. Filters are your friend.

In the same way you might put baking soda in the fridge to soak up smells, activated charcoal and carbon filters absorb the smell of weed. Some inexpensive examples include SmellRid and the Hamilton Beach TrueAir. You can place these around the house or apartment, as close to the source as possible.

3. Mention curb appeal.


Even secondhand smoke leaves a residue on walls and building exteriors, says David Brauer, owner of PuroClean, a cleaning service in Walpole. That residue can emit a foul smell of its own, and if left for too long, may require hiring a cleaning service like his to clean it off.

4. Spread the spoof.

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A spoof, a.k.a. a sploof, filters smoke at the source. Commercial options include the Snubbz Smoke Silencer, SmokeBuddy, and Sploofy. You can craft one by stuffing dryer sheets into a cardboard tube from a roll of toilet paper, putting a flat dryer sheet at one end.

What not to do.

Don’t call the cops. Your neighbor is doing nothing illegal.

Nicole DeFeudis is a Globe correspondent. Send comments to