Beyond the Flames: Fire & Smoke Damage Restoration Tips

You are away……

As your friendly neighbor walks her dog one fine day, she catches a glimpse of what appears to be the flicker of candlelight coming from one of the windows on the lower level of your 3-story and smoke damage

But then she remembers that you specifically told her that you would be away, (for a fortnight at least), and that nobody would be home.

So, she determines that something is wrong! Something is terribly, terribly wrong! And she convinces herself that you either have a ‘squatter’ or you have a fire, of which neither ‘spells’ good news!

As she inches towards your front door (just to make sure), she catches a whiff of what might be the smell of burning. She then reaches out to touch the door handle, and notes that it is hot!

Her adrenalin kicks in and she immediately calls the fire department,

….. then she calls you!

There is chaos, and a lot of it, as the fire trucks, fighters and onlookers all begin to gather. What might have begun as a flicker has now metamorphosed into a raging inferno!

The firefighters respond accordingly and do what they do best. They douse the flames with their ‘sacred’ concoction of water and chemicals and ultimately save the day.

Now the ‘hype’ is over…and you arrive!

There is dead silence in the neighborhood….

The firefighters have left, and so have the onlookers. Everyone has retreated to the place where they call home….

BUT for you, home no longer looks or feels like home……

The building is drenched, the walls are tarnished with soot, and the air reeks of smoke. You could have ‘sworn’ that this was not home. However, according to the address, there was no mistake.

This WAS home. YOUR ‘sweet’ home…

Back to Reality

Often, the overwhelming nature of fire damage causes property owners to overlook the inevitable water damage that occurs when fire fighters attempt to extinguish the flames.

It is only after the fire, when all is quiet, that reality truly hits…

Reality: the presence of wet & soggy, contaminated, mold prone materials everywhere!

It is natural to want to clean up your home and its contents immediately after a fire, however, please STOP!

Do not assume that Fire & Smoke Damage Restoration is just another thing on your ‘honey-do’ list. It is indisputably a job for the professionals.

Fire damage restoration is more complicated that it may superficially appear to be, because firefighting can contribute to primary and secondary water damage which goes hand in hand with mold infestation, among other things!

Professional fire damage restoration will most likely include water damage restoration, smoke damage restoration, odor removal services, carpet & upholstery cleaning services and probably mold mitigation & remediation to name a few.

What you need to know BEFORE re-entering your home after a blaze.

  1. Consult with the fire marshal to ensure that it is safe to re-enter your home after fire damage.
    • We understand that you may want to inspect and see what withstood the fire, however safety first!
    • Fire can cause your home to become extremely unstable and dangerous!

Fire Damage Restoration Clean Up Tips: As soon as you get the ‘go-ahead’ from the Fire Marshal:

  1. Call your Insurance Company/Agent. He or she can advise you accordingly about restoration and/or replacement of damaged items.
  2. Contact and consult with a disaster restoration specialist like Triangle Legacy. We specialize in Fire & Smoke Damage Restoration, Flood & Water Damage, Mold Mitigation & Remediation, Carpet & Upholstery Cleaning and Odor Removal Services, to name a few.
    • We know that Disaster Restoration Services can be rather exorbitant, however trust us, the combination of fire, water, and mold damage to a property could result in a complete loss if it is not handled properly and by a disaster restoration professional.
  1. Ventilate your home by opening all windows and doors to eliminate as much smoke as possible.
  1. Within reason, (and while maintaining your safety as top priority), dry visibly wet items as soon as is feasibly possible.
  1. Cover any clean, unaffected pieces of furniture up with plastic to make sure they are not damaged during the ‘clean-up’ process.
  2. Do not try to clean anything yourself. Soot and smoke that has set into the furniture and carpet can be dangerous.
  3. Don’t plug in any electronics!
    • Have an electrician perform an inspection to check whether the fire caused any electrical damage.
  1. If the electricity is off, empty the freezer and refrigerator completely and prop doors open.
  2. Discard any open food packages. No exceptions!
  3. Arrange to have your air filters changed.

The Bottom Line

Although we do not ‘wish’ fire damage on anyone, we do realize that ‘life happens’! Therefore, if you find yourself faced with such an unfortunate situation, we would like you to assure you that we are here for you, and that you can count on us.

Our team at Triangle Legacy has exceptional expertise in fire & smoke damage restoration. As an added bonus, flood & water damage restoration, mold mitigation & remediation, carpet & upholstery cleaning, and air duct cleaning are also part of our forte.

For a free consultation relative to your Disaster Restoration needs, please contact us at (301) 523-9419 or Toll Free at 1-800-830-3324.

We currently serve a 30-mile radius around the Nation’s Capital, including the Washington DC Metropolitan and Northern Virginia areas.