Who Do You Call for Fire Damage Restoration?

July 4, 2020

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After a devastating fire, it’s vital that you rely on professional fire damage restoration services. Fire cleanup and repairs are often more complicated than homeowners and commercial property owners realize, and a shoddy restoration job can mean structural damage, eventual mold growth, and other costly issues!

Even after a small blaze it’s vital that a property owner call a professional fire damage restoration company. A water damage cleanup company is also an excellent choice for removing water used to extinguish that blaze, and a property owner might also need smoke damage cleanup and odor neutralization services as well.

Hopefully you will never need to find a fire damage restoration company near you; however, to ensure your home or business is always in good condition and gets the care and attention it deserves after a fire, note some vital information about the fire damage restoration process. You might also note some reasons why this work is best left to a professional and why you might avoid DIY fire damage cleanup and repair.

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A property owner might also find it helpful to note some risks that come with water and fire damage and when you might need mold remediation services as well. Discuss any additional questions you have with a fire damage restoration contractor near you and your home will always be clean and pristine and in good condition!

Why Choose a Professional Fire Damage Restoration Company

Fire damage cleanup might seem simple at first glance; a property might assume that they only need some bleach-based sprays, scrub brushes, and rags to remove smoke and water stains. Homeowners and commercial property owners might also assume that they can rent a wet-dry vacuum for removing residual soot and ash from carpets and other flooring. Before you make that same assumption, note some reasons why it’s good to leave this cleanup to a professional fire damage restoration company instead.

  • A fire damage restoration contractor typically begins their work with a full-scale inspection, noting materials that need replacing rather than repair. He or she will check for weakened framing, noting its overall stability, as well as water-soaked carpeting, caulk and grout, and other damaged materials. A property owner might not have this same expertise in evaluating the overall strength and structural stability of a home or commercial building after a fire.
  • Drywall, wood framing and subflooring, foam carpet backing and padding, and other surfaces around a property absorb water quite quickly. It’s difficult for a property owner to remove that water thoroughly after it seeps behind walls and under floors.
  • Residual moisture left behind after inadequate fire damage cleanup leads to softening and other damage to wood framing and flooring. A structure’s flooring might eventually split while wood beams and joists might cup and bow, allowing that structure to shift and settle.
  • Moisture trapped behind walls risks mold growth. Note that mold doesn’t need large amounts of moisture to grow and also spreads very quickly, especially in dark areas with little air circulation such as behind drywall and underneath flooring.
  • Mold and mildew also both grow quite quickly underneath damp carpet padding. Mildew especially creates a very unpleasant odor while both residues damage padding, carpet fibers, and other materials as well.
  • It’s very difficult to remove residual soot, ash, and smoke thoroughly from a home’s carpet, porous floor tiles, grout, textured ceilings and walls, and other surfaces. Even a rented wet-dry vacuum is often inefficient for extracting soot and ash trapped deep in carpet fibers or all those pits and pores along tile surfaces.
  • Trying to remove soot and ash can also cause them to become airborne so that they settle along other areas of the home! Instead of proper fire damage cleaning you then create even more damage and needed cleanup.

When and Why Your Property Needs Fire Damage Cleanup and Repairs

A home or commercial structure doesn’t need to be destroyed completely to suffer severe damage during a fire. Even a small blaze might weaken wood framing and subflooring, and create enough soot and ash so as to cause health hazards inside a structure!

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Firefighters also tend to use large amounts of water to extinguish fires, even small ones, and this water also leads to weakened framing and the risk of mold and mildew, as said. Fire suppressant chemicals are also damaging to building surfaces and are typically hazardous to a person’s health when not cleaned properly after a blaze.

Fires and fire suppression chemicals also tend to leave behind very bothersome odors! Even after a blaze is extinguished, you might notice the smell of burned or charred wood, rubber, and other materials, as well as smoky and chemical smells. These strong odors are more than just bothersome; they can result in headaches, sinus irritation, and sleep disturbances! Opening windows, using carpet freshener, and other such homemade remedies are ineffective at removing those odors completely.

Fire damage restoration contractors often provide odor neutralizing services as part of, or in addition to, their standard cleanup services. Odor neutralizers don’t simply cover these bad smells with heavy perfumes but actually neutralize the chemicals that cause odors! Your home will be fresh and clean and you won’t be bothered by lingering smells when you choose odor neutralizing services from a fire damage restoration contractor.

Keep these points in mind if your home or business ever suffers a fire on the cook top, in the employee kitchen, and elsewhere. Never assume that a fire was too small or that firefighters didn’t use enough water for your structure to need fire restoration services, and never assume that putting out a blaze means your structure is out of danger! Call for fire damage restoration services near you after any indoor or outdoor fire, at least for a full-scale inspection of potential damage and needed repairs.

What Is the Difference Between Mold Remediation and Mold Cleanup?

After fire or water damage, it’s often recommended that a property owner invest in mold remediation services. These services are different than mold cleanup and restoration!

  • Mold remediation refers to monitoring a property for the likelihood of mold growth and reducing the risk of mold before it develops. This includes checking humidity levels over a period of time and drying out that environment as needed, such as with dehumidifiers or water extraction processes.
  • If mold should start to develop, mold remediation services clean those spores right away and bring in added measures to keep them from coming back.
  • Mold cleanup refers to removing mold after its has developed and spread over any significant area. In some cases, this means more than cleaning; for example, if mold has grown through wood studs or carpet fibers, those materials might need to be disposed of rather than cleaned.

Investing in mold remediation after water extraction services or fire damage restoration reduces the risk of mold developing in the first place. You can then avoid the risk of unhealthy mold in your home or commercial structure and also avoid otherwise unnecessary cleanup and mold restoration costs!

Avoid Common Mistakes When Waiting for Fire Damage Restoration

If you’ve scheduled fire damage restoration services with a company near you, it’s vital that you avoid some common mistakes while waiting for your appointment, either for their initial consultation and inspection or for cleaning services. One thing that you don’t want to do is start the cleaning process yourself! Trying to vacuum soot and ash or scrub stains from walls can simply spread residues around your structure, as said, making that damage worse.

In the same way, you might also avoid bringing in fans to remove residual smells and circulate fresh air, as fans can also simply scatter ash and soot around your home or business. If the fire was contained in a small area of your structure, you might open that room’s windows and aim a fan out the window while also closing its entryway door; otherwise, simply wait for your fire damage restoration contractor to address smells and poor air quality.

Property owners would also do well to avoid air fresheners and other attempts at masking odors. Not only are they ineffective but a fire damage restoration contractor needs to note unpleasant odors, to know if neutralizing services are needed and to ensure they’re addressing all areas of fire damage!

A property owner should also avoid trying to break off, pull up, or cut away damaged drywall, carpeting, and other materials. It’s easy to damage unaffected areas of walls and floors while trying to remove charred materials, making needed repairs even worse! Those materials can also suddenly “give way,” risking injury from crumbling ceilings or walls.

Related Questions

How much does fire damage restoration cost?

There is no way to determine your fire damage restoration costs without an inspection and in-person estimate. Most homeowners might pay anywhere from $200 to $2000, depending on the damage in their home and if those costs are paid, at least in part, by your homeowner’s insurance.

Is fire damage restoration covered by homeowner’s insurance?

As every policy is different, there is no “blanket answer” of what fires are covered by your particular homeowner’s insurance. However, note that fires caused by a property owner’s negligence, such as from ignoring items on the stove or falling asleep with a cigarette in your hand, are not typically covered. Your insurance agent can review the fire damage restoration services covered by your policy in particular.

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