No one wants to experience, let alone suffer from a house fire accident. But let us face it, no matter how much we avoid it, we have to be ready in case we are the unlucky victims of this common household hazard.
According to the US Federal Emergency Management Agency, a house fire accident is listed as one of the most common residential threats in the United States. Apart from the traumatic experience that homeowners may endure, there is also the difficulty of cleaning up the damaged area and restoring items, such as draperies, furniture, clothes, and carpets. Thus, it is really important to know the SOP should our home fall prey from fire and smoke damage.
Fire and Smoke Damage Cleanup and Restoration Preparation
Before doing any cleanup and restoration work, see to it that you wear protective gears, such as long gloves, face mask, safety goggles, and appropriate clothing. Even if the fire is completely extinguished, dust, soot, and hazardous fumes are still present in the room. Inhaling these particles, together with abrasive cleaning chemicals, is harmful to the skin and lungs. Since prevention is better that cure, wearing safety gear is one way of keeping you safe from the risks of these harmful particles.
Before getting started, decide on the type and amount of cleaning supplies that you are going. You may choose between gentle or abrasive cleaners depending on the level of fire and smoke damage.
One effective cleaner for fire and smoke damage is the Trisodium Phosphate (TSP), A chemical commonly used for cleaning exterior surfaces. Since TSP can cause abrasion, skin burn, and eye damage, don't start cleaning unless you wear appropriate clothing and protective gear. Make sure that rags, sponges, buckets, bleach, and warm water are ready. Read and follow the directions indicated on the bottle and mix the chemical with the right amount of bleach or warm water. Take a scouring sponge and scrub areas one at a time. After scrubbing, rinse the small section with a clean rag and water to. Never let the TSP stay on the surface for long because it could damage and discolor the wall or flooring.
Call a Professional
Fire and smoke can get anywhere, and cleaning up the damage can be more challenging than expected. All the areas of the house, from the ceiling and the walls to floors, carpets and furniture, should be cleaned thoroughly even if they don't look dirty or damaged. Ask the help of friends or relatives to help when cleaning up. But if the damage is more extensive and severe, it would be more practical to contact a professional to get the job done.
Restoring your home is possible if the paint is peeling or the wallpaper is bubbled. If the wall and ceiling is beyond repair, they still need to be cleaned to eliminate the dust, soot and harmful fumes. Either way, the smartest route for post-fire damage is to consult a professional who assess the damage and provide you with an cleanup and restoration service that will make your battered house the home that you've always wanted.
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