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The Basics of Soot and Odor Restoration

Putting Out the Fire is Just the First Step to Recovery

Long after the fire has been put out, the stench of smoke continues to linger for an extended period.  Thus a house fire will leave a smoke odor that will remain on the premises and in all the items within the house.  To be able to get rid of the smell you will have to do odor remediation.  Different things made of different materials need another kind of odor restoration techniques because fire also has different effects on each type of material.  For the safe and proper application of each odor restoration technique, it will be best to get the services of a professional water and fire damage restoration company.

fire damage restoration

Conditions for Each Type of Odor Restoration

  • Generally, items found in your home are made of any one or a combination of these materials:
  • Soft materials made of fabric like clothes, draperies, curtains, beddings, upholstery, and furniture
  • Hard and permeable materials like wallpaper, wooden structure or furniture, the painted exterior
  • Hard and non-permeable materials like glass, metal, tiles, Formica tops and most of the appliances
  • Additionally, the quality of smoke will also depend on the type of material that got burned.  If the source of fire is pure fuel such as grease, it will produce a simple fire that will not spread and will end up in full combustion.  On the other hand, complex fires result when a lot of different types of materials are burned as in a house or building fire where you will find all sorts of materials such as wood, plastic, clothing, furniture, carpets, electrical wirings.  Given the complicated nature of house fires, odor restoration should include the care of a professional water and fire damage restoration company.

Odor Restoration for Light Materials

One of the significant issues in odor restoration for light materials is the high probability of staining the materials.  One technique you can apply to minimize staining is using a powerful vacuum to draw in the soot to the vacuum cleaner.  You should be careful not to touch the material with the nozzle of the vacuum or directly touching the garment.  If you do, the soot will be pushed further down into the cloth.  If you believe that the soot has already permeated the fabric, then it will be best to bring it to a professional cleaner.  Carpets should be cleaned by a professional carpet cleaning service as well.  If you want to do it yourself, you will have to buy or rent a professional grade scrubber and vacuum from your local hardware stores.  Clean the carpet once before doing the repairs and again as soon as the repairs are complete.

Odor Restoration for Solid Surfaces

You can use a dry chemical sponge to wipe out soot on solid surfaces.  If the soot is already ingrained into the material, it will also stain the item permanently. If the fire damage is extensive, burning the walls, expect the surrounding areas to smell of smoke and develop a lot of soot.  Industrial strength cleaners will have to be used to clean up the soot and eliminate smoke odor.

Odor Restoration for Other Types of Surfaces and Materials

You can always attempt to do odor restoration yourself. However, owing to the delicateness of odor and soot restoration, it will be best handled by professionals who can precisely and efficiently do what is necessary for a shorter time.  Additionally, they have the needed machines and industrial grade cleaners to deal with all types of remediation and restoration procedure.  These machines, as well as these chemicals,  can be dangerous if not handled properly. Next to secondary water damage, the major issues that have to be dealt with after a fire disaster are the destructive effect of soot and smoke because it can saturate all the items within the affected areas and will be extremely difficult to clean up without the expertise and proper equipment.  Professional restoration companies will be able to handle this difficult task and restore your home and belonging within a reasonable time frame.  To get more information regarding odor restoration just find your local fire and water damage restoration company.