If you’ve ever sat around a campfire, you know how easy it is afterward for your clothes and other items to smell like you’ve just survived a wildfire! So it’s clear why, after a house fire, the last thing you want is the lingering smell of smoke and ash. Not only is it noxious but it’s also unsafe.
Fire-related smoke damage includes harm to porous materials, metals, and other home surfaces. The best way to deal with the problem is to hire a smoke damage restoration company with the proper equipment and techniques to rid your Central Florida home of the odor before it settles in too deep.
Hiring a professional fire damage restoration company that also provides smoke damage solutions helps you control smoke-related damage. And the sooner you call the pros in, the less time-consuming and expensive the restoration work can be. Central Florida Restoration Solutions is just a click away!
What is Fire-Related Smoke Damage?
A combination of smoke and soot, smoke damage affects multiple materials in different ways. That can make it challenging to determine how much smoke damage your home’s experienced after a fire.
Depending on the type and temperature of the fire, the resulting smoke damage can destroy prized possession and ruin your home’s indoor air quality. Left untreated, smoke’s odor can remain for months and cause even further damage.
Are you recovering from a house fire and wondering if your home has experienced smoke damage? Here’s an overview of what qualifies and how it can affect your health and home.
Experts consider smoke damage to be any physical or structural harm caused by smoke, but not the fire. Smoke on its own doesn’t destroy a room or objects the way a fire does, but it can still have devastating results.
Some effects of smoke damage include a layer of soot or a persistent odor, but it can also take other forms. For instance, it often comes as a surprise to people how greasy smoke and soot are. But that explains why it can make so many items unpleasant to touch, particularly furniture and other fabric-based belongings.
The most common types of residential smoke damage are:
- Wet smoke refers to fumes from low-heat and smoldering flames generally caused by burnt rubber or plastic. The plumes are thick and black and, if not dealt with as soon as possible, can cause rust and corrosion on metal items throughout your house. Wet smoke is also extremely greasy, which makes it difficult to clean up, especially with DIY efforts.
- Protein smoke is the result of burning organic matter and is usually found after kitchen fires. Though it doesn’t leave greasy smears or black stains, you will notice paint discoloration and a strong, unpleasant odor.
- Fuel smoke results from burning oil, petroleum, or other fuel. It’s most common in garages and, once settled, its residue is thick and sticky, making it extremely difficult to clean.
- Dry smoke typically results from wood or paper whose residue is powdery and not as sticky as other smoke damage. The downside is that its powder-like texture makes it easy for dry smoke to find its way into the narrowest of space, where it can wreak havoc on structural features.
- Complex fire smoke refers to damage done by burnt natural and synthetic materials. It has a greasy yellow residue.
Keep in mind that not all smoke damage is visible. So, don’t assume it doesn’t exist because you can’t see it. In many cases, the only sign you have fire-related smoke damage is a pungent odor permeating your home.
How Smoke Can Damage Your Central Florida Home
Smoke can damage your home’s walls, floors, ceilings, and furniture, leaving visible and invisible damage. It harms multiple porous surfaces, like carpeting, curtains, and clothing, which often require professional cleaning.
The intensity of the fire and the types of smoke it leaves behind determine the type and extent of damage and the restoration you’ll need to perform.
Some of the worst effects of smoke damage, however, are health-related and include:
- Lung problems, particularly in people with asthma or other respiratory issues.
- Skin problems like rashes and itchiness.
- Carbon monoxide fumes that can cause headaches, dizziness, or carbon monoxide poisoning.
Fortunately, smoke damage can be removed and stopped in its tracks, but only if you call in experts right away. The smoke restoration pros at CFRS have the tools and techniques needed for effective fire and smoke damage removal and restoration that safely and effectively removes visible signs and unpleasant odors from your home.
Act Fast to Mitigate Smoke Damage
If furniture, clothing, carpets, and other household items and surfaces are left exposed to soot and ash for an extended time, they can be harmed beyond repair. That’s why time is of the essence when dealing with smoke damage.
Advantages to hiring a smoke damage restoration company for cleanup are:
- High-quality restoration companies know how urgent the problem is. The sooner you call in restoration experts, the more likely you are to prevent permanent damage to your cherished belongings.
- Certified professionals can thoroughly and accurately inspect your home and quickly calculate what type of damage you’re dealing with and its extent.
- No home solution comes close to the deep cleaning a professional smoke damage restoration company can perform. The equipment and products the pros use to get rid of smoke odors and prevent smoke from etching glass, rotting metal, and destroying drywall.
- A qualified fire and smoke damage restoration company can help you deal with your insurance claims and refer you to expert local contractors to repair any damages.
The professionals at CFRS can quickly assess and mitigate the smoke damage at your Central Florida home and return it to its previous state.
Why Can’t I Clean Up Smoke Damage Myself?
We hear this question all the time. The simple answer is that you can clean up some smoke damage yourself, but in all likelihood, you’ll only end up removing its visible signs. Expert smoke remediation and restoration technicians provide total smoke damage removal.
While you wait for the pros to arrive, you might want to perform these few tasks on your own:
- Open doors and windows to thoroughly ventilate the house and let smoke particles dissipate.
- Remove debris.
- Place store-bought products that neutralize odors around your home to help rid it of unpleasant smells.
- Vacuum small areas of soot with a shop vac, being careful not to press down on the residue.
- Gently wipe soot from walls with a dry sponge, paint thinner, or vinegar.
- Clean any household items that are only lightly smoke-damaged.
- Turn off your HVAC system to keep smoke from circulating and then turn it back on after your home’s clear of significant smoke. This will speed the distribution of fresh air.
What to Expect When Smoke Damage Professionals Arrive on the Scene
Moving forward after a house fire can be challenging, but it’s imperative to take immediate action to lessen the effects of smoke and soot.
A professional fire and smoke damage restoration company removes smells, deep cleans your home, and gives you the peace of mind that comes with knowing your home will be restored to its pre-fire condition.
Once our friendly team arrives at your home, you can expect them to:
- Clean your home’s interior and exterior at a deeper level than you can yourself.
- Eliminate odor-infused materials and objects that are non-salvageable.
- Use professional cleaning agents and tools like chemical sponges to remove smoke damage.
- Employ professional-grade cleaning equipment and techniques to remove hidden odor sources.
CFRS’ 6-step smoke restoration process includes:
- Step 1: Inspection – Our restoration professionals inspect each of your home’s rooms and perform tests to determine the damages’ extent and whether structural elements are safe.
- Step 2: Ventilation – We use industrial-grade air-moving equipment to eliminate contaminated air from your home.
- Step 3: Smoke contamination – Loose smoke contamination is removed with special dry-cleaning soot sponges.
- Step 4: Complete cleanup – We use specially formulated products to thoroughly clean carpeting and upholstery that we first vacuum with a heavy-duty cleaner outfitted with a HEPA filter.
- Step 5: Acid neutralization – An alkaline cleaner negates the acids present in soot.
- Step 6: Specialized equipment – Commercial grade equipment quickly and efficiently eliminates odors from all affected areas.
If needed, our crews also board up missing or broken windows and doors and tarp your home’s roof. And if there’s water damage from extinguishing the fire, they begin water removal and restoration work, including using dehumidifiers and other equipment to remove all moisture.
Final touches in the smoke remediation process can include interior and exterior repair work on drywall, replacing carpeting, and any necessary reconstruction. How long the entire process takes depends on your home’s size and how widespread the damage is. Many jobs are finished in a few days, but others can take several months or more.
No matter the extent of the smoke damage in your home, you can be confident in our solutions to salvage as many of your belongings as possible, including furniture, family heirlooms, electronics, and more.
Professional Smoke Damage Restoration Services in Central Florida
Even a small fire can cause smoke damage in your Central Florida home. Because a fire can strike any time of the day or night, CFRS offers 24/7 fire and smoke damage restoration services. We’ll respond quickly and work with you and, if necessary, your insurance company, to restore your home and make it safe once more. We’ll also help you decide which household items you should clean and which ones you’ll probably need to discard and replace.
CFRS is Central Florida’s most trusted and dependable smoke damage restoration company, and we promise to make the process as stress-free as possible. Has your home suffered recent fire damage? You can rely on us to provide outstanding smoke damage solutions that reduce further damages and costs.
We’re also known as Central Florida’s go-to provider of water damage and mold damage services which you might need after experiencing a house fire. To learn more about all our services, contact us today.