Smoke and Soot after a Small Fire
Taking Care of Smoke and Soot After a Small Fire
If you had a small house fire, then you may be wondering why you need to leave your house for some time. After all, if the rest of your house wasn't damaged by the fire, it may seem excessive to stay at a hotel.
However, smoke and soot left behind by the fire carry potential health risks. Learn why you may need to evacuate for some time and how to take care of smoke damages when you return home.
Let Professionals Assess the Smoke Damage
You may need to evacuate your home so that professionals can properly assess the fire and smoke damage. Your insurance company needs to evaluate who was at fault and how the damages will be covered.
Professionals at restoration companies also need to assess what work needs to be done and figure out when it's safe enough to do so. For instance, the restoration professionals may need to properly ventilate the house before they can make repairs.
Although you may think you just have smoke damage, a restoration professional may find other issues. For example, you may have water damages from firefighting efforts, meaning that they will have to make sure the house doesn't have mold or structural damage.
Once the professionals have assessed the damages, they can proceed to make it safe for you to enter the house again.
Remove Lingering Odors When It's Safe to Return
Once you get the go-ahead to return to your home, you may find that while other restorations are underway, there are still odors from the fire. You shouldn't take care of large damages since they can put your health at risk, but you can help eliminate poor air quality.
Products with tri-sodium phosphate (TSP) are great at reducing smoky odors on upholstered furniture, clothing, and curtains. Make sure that you check your fabrics for care instructions. Remember that TSP can be caustic, so make sure that you wear a mask and gloves and follow the manufacturer's instructions.
Purchase dry-cleaning sponges to wipe off any soot or smoke stains on the walls. If there are still loose soot particles on the floor, use a shop-vac to remove the debris. Also consider installing or renting a HEPA air purifier to catch any lingering particulates in the air.
Lastly, talk with a professional from a restoration company to see what they cover in their services. Some places will clean up the odors along with their restorations.
Contact us at SERVPRO of Eaton County, Clinton and Gratiot Counties, Lansing & Holt if you need help with any restorations.