A house fire is a traumatic experience for anyone to go through. However, the risk to you and your family can continue long after the fire is extinguished. Whether it was a minor cooking fire in the kitchen or a full-fledged blaze that caused extensive damage to the entire home, it is highly recommended that you employ professional fire restoration services immediately following a fire.
Fire damage includes smoke and soot, which must be dealt with immediately following a fire. Smoke damage restoration also typically involves cleaning the black marks that fire causes from walls, as well as cleaning up the water and chemicals that you or the firefighters used to put the fire out.
It is strongly recommended that you turn to professionals for post-fire restoration. While you may think that you’re saving money by reading about cleaning up fire damage or watching video tutorials, you may end up making the damage worse. A professional, however, has a trained eye and can tell you what can be saved and what you will have to dispose of, and can properly deodorize your home.
First, have the fire crew make sure that your home is safe to enter and you have addressed issues relating to insurance. Once you can enter the home, get air flowing through it; install a fan to help with air flow, but if there is water damage and the weather is warm, keep the windows closed and run a dehumidifier instead. Your heating system should remove any moisture from the air during cold weather, but you should still change your furnace’s filter on a daily basis. Also dry any wet items as soon as possible and use fans to dry your carpets
Soot and Charring
Soot is the residue left behind by fire. It contains carbon-based impurities and has an oily texture due to plastic-based materials present in every home. Professional smoke damage cleaners will use cleaning materials and powerful vacuums to clean the soot completely, then deodorize the home to remove any smells. A fresh coat of paint may be necessary afterward, as will replacing certain items if they are too heavily damaged to restore. The process can also include cleaning your home’s ducts.
Removing Soot from Textiles
Soot leaves behind an oily residue on household textiles. As part of managing smoke damage, you must remove soot from household textiles before you attempt to clean and deodorize them. This is one task you should leave up to the experts, as attempting to use a home vacuum may actually make it worse since it will force the soot deeper into the fabric. From there, the smoke damage contractors will deodorize textiles.
Removing Smoke Odour
Some people may consider the smell of smoke to be pleasant, but the smell it leaves behind after a house fire is actually quite unpleasant. Smoke from a fire can also permeate walls and other surfaces. As part of the fire restoration process, a professional will use safe materials to remove odours from everything from your walls, floors, and furniture to your home’s ductwork.
As the leading provider of smoke damage restoration, Flood Services Canada can be at your property as soon as the fire department determines that your home is safe to enter and begin the smoke damage cleanup process. We will also help to determine what can and can’t be salvaged and make your home habitable again my removing soot stains and odours caused by smoke.
“DIY Tips on How to Clean Smoke Damage,” Inside Out Home Improvement web site; http://iohomeimprovement.com/diy-tips-on-how-to-clean-smoke-damage/, last accessed December 22, 2014.
“Handling Smoke Damage After a Fire – Getting Smoke and Soot Out,” University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences web site, 1998; http://disaster.ifas.ufl.edu/PDFS/CHAP13/D13-17.pdf.