Fire Damage Repair Tips
After you have fire or water damage, you might want to jump right in to fire damage repair, but unless you get professional advice, you might be wasting your time.
The first step after your home is damaged is to contact your insurance agent. They can provide advice regarding fire and water damage restoration.
Your agent can recommend someone to handle your fire damage restoration for you. If you live in the Big Bear, CA area, we can help you. We are experienced at helping with fire damage repair and know what it takes to make this unpleasant experience easier to handle.
Even if you don’t hire a professional, you can minimize further damage by following these steps:
First, make sure you have permission from the fire marshall to re-enter your home to begin your fire damage repair.
It is important to increase air circulation. Open windows. Bring in a fan or fans to move air around. Dry wet items as soon as possible. Use the fans and dehumidifiers to dry carpet and drapes.
If drapes and carpet water damage stay wet, they can provide a great home for mold and mildew. You don’t want this to happen. Get them dry as soon as possible. It is even possible to remove your carpet, hang it over a fence to dry it out and then have an installer put it back for you.
Smoke can etch brass and copper items within 24 hours so you will want to clean any brass or copper items with copper cleaner before that happens.
Put plastic discs or wax paper under furniture legs so they don’t stain your flooring underneath. Cover dry items with plastic while repairs are in progress.
Hardwood floor water damage is the fastest way to ruin a nice hardwood floor. Most floors are made to be waterproof, but not 100% waterproof. I guess we should say they are “water resistant.” If they are damaged by water, you will need to remove the water. Mop it up and set up the fans. You may need to refinish the surface as well.
Soot is oily and stains carpet, drapes and furniture. It must be cleaned off before other cleaning attempts are made. You should probably hire a professional to remove the soot. They have heavy duty equipment to help with fire and water damage restoration.
If you are going to try to vacuum the soot yourself, do so from an inch or so above the surface. Don’t use attachments because the can actually scrub the soot into the fibers.
Removing odors should also be left to the professionals. They use “counteractants,” or chemicals that break up the smoke molecules and eliminate odors. Ozone treatment is another method of eliminating smoke odors.
To clean soot off of walls, use a chemical sponge or other non-water-based cleaner. You can also use alcohol or paint thinner, but if the cleaning sponge is available, it is a much safer option because it doesn’t give off fumes.
Removing smoke odor from your house can be a difficult task and should be referred to professionals. “Thermal fogging” is a process that can help neutralize the smoke odor. Thermal fogging penetrates your home, similar to how the smoke penetrated. Smoke will need to be removed from your heating and air ducts. Fire damage repair professionals have the equipment to do this.
Fixing fire damage repair is a difficult task. It is possible to do it by yourself, but it can be very time and resource consuming. Professionals should be consulted. All of these steps assume you aren’t going to replace the damaged part of your house. If you want to use the fire and water damage as an excuse to remodel or rebuild your home, we can help you with that. Depending on the extent of the damage, that might actually be a better option.