Fire Damage Restoration Tips
One of the biggest problems in the fire damage restoration industry is that people don’t know what to do following a disaster. That’s why in this article, we’re going to give you more information about the steps you can take. This article specifically covers fire damage restoration tips so that you know what actions to take after a fire hits your property. The last thing we want is for you to panic.
It’s our hope that this guide will give you a general idea of what to do after disaster strikes so that you’re not left waiting, with no clue of what next steps you should take. Especially when it comes to fires, time really counts. The faster soot and ash can be removed from home and property contents, for instance, the greater the chance of restoring those items. And the sooner you get in touch with a company to help you, the sooner restoration can begin.
Though it might seem obvious, staying safe is the most important tip we can give. If at all possible, avoid breathing in air full of smoke or soot. When fire strikes, it causes all kinds of harmful contaminants and chemicals from your home to become airborne. If you do absolutely need to enter contaminated areas, wear a respirator so you don’t damage your lungs by breathing in smoke and soot particles. Also, be careful around any area of the house that received water damage, from the fire department. There can be real danger for electrocution when parts of the wall are exposed, water is present, and electrical lines are active.
This is one of the biggest reasons why it’s best to let a professional restoration company handle your fire damage project. Professional companies have the proper equipment to ensure health, while cleaning up fire damage. There’s not just smoke damage and ash, following a fire. There may be water damage, mold growth (from water damage), structural damage, and any number of unseen hazards.
Contact the Right Companies
Right away, following a fire, you’ll want to get in touch with a restoration company, and your insurance company. If the fire department is there, they may have some recommendations for next steps you can take to connect with the right resources, as well. Take all the help you can get. When fires affect homes, in particular, it can be extremely emotionally challenging. The strong emotions you’re likely to experience can make it difficult to process what’s really happening. It’s another reason why having professionals there to help can make a big difference.
Ventilate the Area
If you need to enter an area that the fire has damaged, try your best to ventilate it. However, one extremely important note: ensure that all fires have been put out before ventilating an area. If any fire is left burning, the added oxygen might fan the flame. Once sure that you’re safe, open all the windows and doors that you can find, to get fresh air inside. Having fresh air does not do anything to protect your valuables from soot and ash acidity. Nor does it make any major progress for property restoration. However, it can make entering the home for important items, early in the restoration process, a little less dangerous. In some cases, it may also prevent soot and ash from settling on even more items in the home, which can help limit the overall extent of damage.
Get Rid of Smoke Damage
Whenever there’s a fire, there will inevitably be smoke damage alongside it. Smoke damage occurs from even the smallest of kitchen fires. There are a couple of ways that you can deal with smoke damage on your own. You can buy a chemical sponge, for example, which you can use to remove smoke and soot stains from your walls. With a gentle wiping motion, these sponges can help you get rid of surface-level smoke stains and odors. Alternatively, you could use an encapsulating sealer like a smoke-sealing paint. Instead of removing the stain, these sealers trap the soot and smoke particles in your walls so that you can’t smell or see them anymore.
Of course, these tips are really best suited for extremely small fires, or for situations where a lot of smoke comes from an oven, or something similar. For major house fires, chemical sponges or encapsulating sealer will simply not be enough.
Keep an Eye Out for Mold
This item on our list of fire damage restoration tips may seem a little out of place. You might think to yourself, “doesn’t that belong in a list of water damage restoration tips?” But something that often surprises people is that water damage restoration is almost always involved in fire damage restoration. When firefighters put out fires in your home or business, they pump a lot of water directly into your property. Mold growth is one of the side effects of all this water. If you find that mold is growing in your home, though, there’s no need to panic. It’s just another reason to consider hiring a professional though, as many companies offer mold remediation, as well as fire and water damage restoration. Let the professionals take care of everything for you, even if fire damage, water damage, and mold hit your home all at once.
After a fire, you will almost certainly need cleaning for the contents of your home or property. If a fire occurs in your home, the heat and smoke may damage things like your clothing, dishware, plastics, tools/ equipment, bedding, electronics, and anything in range. But there’s no need to automatically throw everything into the trash because of this damage. Contents cleaning, which removes things like smoke stains and even mold damage, can help you restore everything back to normal.
There are companies that specifically offer contents cleaning, following property damage. Contents cleaning companies have the technology to clean virtually every smoke stain, or ash and soot residue. Whether it’s removing stains from your favorite articles of clothing or making your cups and glasses smell like normal again, it is possible to restore, rather than replace.