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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

How To Clean & Restore Your Home After A Fire

6/25/2020 (Permalink)

Cleaning and restoring your home after a fire can be dangerous if the proper safety precautions are not taken and the right procedure is not followed. It is also essential to act fast after the fire occurs to prevent smoke and soot from causing additional damage. While the easiest way to restore your home after a fire is to hire a professional fire restoration company, you may be able to clean up small fires yourself, along with the assistance of friends and loved ones. 

Cleaning Procedures

There is a certain cleaning process homeowners should follow after a fire occurs inside of their home. While each home is unique and the cleaning process should be specifically designed to restore all damages found during the inspection process, there are certain steps that should be taken. These steps include but are not limited to wearing personal protective equipment, ensuring the surrounding area is properly protected, and using TSP products to remove the lingering odors the fire caused. The following is an overview of the most notable steps that should be taken during the restoration process after a home fire. 

Use Proper PPE 

Do not start the home restoration process if you do not have the proper personal protective equipment (PPE). This is the most important step in the process as inhaling smoke and leaving yourself exposed to other harmful elements after a fire can be detrimental to short and long-term health. The basic PPE essentials you will need before you begin to clean and restore your home include: 

  • Safety goggles
  • Protective gloves
  • Long sleeves
  • Nose mask
  • Apron

You may need additional PPE, such as safety boots, depending on the specific details of the fire aftermath. The main thing is to ensure your body is fully covered and protected. Once you have the right equipment, you can start the process. 

Protect the Surrounding Area

The next step is to protect all surrounding areas. Be sure to open up all windows and doors in the home to allow smoke and other elements to leave the home. This prevents buildup of smoke and soot and can minimize damage as well as help you stay safe and protected. Ideally, you should also have a high-powered fan installed to move smoke and the vapor of cleaning products away. 

Now you will need to protect the floors, especially the areas that have little to no damage. You can do this by laying a cloth down or blocking off the less damaged area to avoid people tracking smoke and other particles through the floor. 

Use TSP Products 

You can use trisodium phosphate (TSP) products to remove the odor that lingers after a home fire. The odor is one of the primary concerns homeowners typically have after a home fire occurs. Not only can the smell be unpleasant, but breathing in the smoke and other particles that contribute to low air quality can be bad for one’s health.

When using TSP products, be sure to follow the directions closely. This is when your personal protection equipment becomes incredibly important. Since TSP products have the ability to burn and damage skin, make sure to have your body fully protected and use extra caution while using TSP chemicals. 

Scrub Walls

The walls in the damaged area will most likely be very dirty, if not damaged. The sooner you can wipe away the soot on the walls the more effective the restoration will be. You can use a chemical dry cleaning sponge (often referred to as a soot eraser sponge) to remove the soot that has built up on the walls. 

Since the walls may be damaged and vulnerable, scrub them gently yet thoroughly to remove as much residue as possible. If multiple cleanings are needed, be sure to let the walls dry between each time you scrub.  

Allow Proper Drying Time

As you clean your walls, floors and roof, be sure to allow all areas to dry properly if you use a liquid cleaning solution. All too many homeowners make the mistake of painting or decorating too soon, which leads to less effective results. Before painting, laying new floors and other home restoration tasks, make sure the walls are dry and ready for repair. 

Contact the Fire Damage Restoration Experts

For the best home restoration results after a fire, contact our professional and experienced team at SERVPRO of Highland Village. We specialize in home restoration after fire and water damage, and it is our goal to reduce the cost of replacements by restoring your home floors, walls, roof, furniture, and more. Our friendly team is happy to discuss how we can help you after your home fire, and we can answer questions you may have. We also offer 24/7 emergency services as we understand the importance of a prompt response following a home fire. 

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