Fire Smoke Damage

By | February 13, 2014

How to Deal with the Challenges of Fire and Smoke Damage

Fire smoke damage can be particularly devastating and can take a lot of time, money, and hard work to recover from. Repair and restoration following a fire accompanied by water damage is a different story from regular water damage, and a large part of the challenge is due to smoke damage restoration.

Even small fires can cause major damage particularly due to the presence of smoke. If fire or even water do not destroy your belongings, almost nothing can be safe from the smoke.

The worst thing is, smoke poses risks that are beyond what you see. Even if you get rid of the smoke, it can easily enter cracks in your walls and remain there. If the smoke is not thoroughly removed, it can cause a strong, pungent odor that can remain in your house or reoccur occasionally, especially during the wet seasons, even several months after the fire.

Types of Smoke Damage

The presence of smoke in any type of fire, big or small, is often the most challenging part in a fire smoke damage restoration, because it can leave permanent or easy-to-remove effects. There are two types of smoke damage that you will have to deal with.


The first is visible soot, which is the layer of dried or wet smoke that settles on your floor, ceiling, wall, your belongings, or any other available surface. Soot can be removed with the help of a vacuum cleaner; just make sure to leave some distance between the vacuum and the item to prevent driving the soot further into the material.

You can also soak all textiles, drapes, and clothes in warm water mixed with dishwashing detergent. For white items, you can also use bleach. Soot on walls, ceilings, and floors, however, may need to be scrubbed off with the help of paint thinners.

More difficult to get rid of than visible soot, however, is the unseen or invisible odor. Aside from being simply unpleasant, smoke odors can cause respiratory problems. The odor also differs based on whether the burned area of object is made of wood or of plastic. Although there are cleaning products that can effectively help with the removal of smoke odors, you will need different products to deal with different smoke odors.

Your Options in Smoke, Water and Fire Damage Restoration

When it comes to restoring a home after a fire and water damage, you have two main options: to do it yourself or to call up professional fire damage restoration services.

If you decide to do it yourself, here are some tips that may help. The first thing to remember is to increase ventilation in the area to let as much smoke out and to let fresh air in, which will also help make the water evaporate or dry up any remaining moisture. You can do this by opening all doors and windows, and placing fans in the area.

You should also prioritize the drying of the entire area to prevent the growth of mold and mildew. Using dehumidifiers can contribute greatly to your operation.

Fire Damage Restoration and Your Insurance Policy

Dealing with a fire that destroys your home can be a devastating experience, but when you start thinking about the costs of restoring your home, you can face even greater distress. All the more so if you start talking with your insurance company. Insurance providers frown upon fire home insurance claims because fire often causes a lot of damage.

The easiest way to get your fire insurance claim approved for your smoke damage repairs is to work with a professional fire damage restoration service who can help back up your claim and provide you with necessary documentation so your insurance company won’t have grounds to deny your claim.