Did you know that in 2019, there were more than 1,291,500 estimated fire incidents in America? The death rate estimates at 3,704 and 16,600injuries, resulting in a loss of $14.8 billion. These statistics are scary and what’s worse is the fact that house fires are unexpected.
Of course, no one buys a property, thinking they’ll eventually lose everything. House fires mainly occur due to improper planning. They are either a result of unattended cooking, overheating, or overloading of power points. Inadequate and faulty wiring, flammable candles, and light fittings of lampshades are a few more reasons. Not only these, but fires can occur due to things you might consider entirely harmless. For instance, Christmas trees are a favorite holiday tradition for families all over the world. But did you know that real evergreen trees dry out pretty quickly, and a spark and hot light can set the tree on fire and spread it all over the property? It can cause immense damage, including risks to human lives.
The reasons behind a fire are evident, but what should you do to restore your property after fire damage? Firstly, never try remediating your house yourself. It’s far too risky and a much more suited job for professionals. Below, we have highlighted seven tips that will help you restore your property post-fire damage.
1. Dry out
You might not know, but fires can lead to significant water damage. It can be because of the fire damaging your plumbing and pipes. Or water entering your property while the firefighters are setting out the fire. Even excessive use of water sprinklers by firefighters can lead to water shortage.
It is always best to consult a water damage advisor to avoid the water from causing further deterioration. Advisors and their teams can give you immediate assistance regarding water damage. They can help with quick restoration preventing water from causing any unbearable losses. They also provide mold remediation and professional advice on what kind of carpets, walls, and appliances you should get to minimize risk. Most water damage consultants also carry years of experience in dealing with insurance. They can help you with documentation and registrations to receive a fair share of compensation.
2. Remove soot and debris
Before you begin your water damage restoration process, removing any soot and debris is highly essential. Soot is a hazardous particle that can enter your body through inhalation and cause breathing issues. The risks of asthma, bronchitis, and coronary heart disease are pretty high due to soot.
Other than personal health hazards, there are also harmful environmental effects associated with soot. It causes haze and decreases visibility extensively. Sulfur dioxides and nitrogen oxides, two primary compounds found in soot, can form acid rain by reacting with moisture in the air.
On the other hand, debris transports chemical pollutants, can lead to internal injuries, loss of nutrition, and even intestinal blockage.
3. Evacuate your valuables
During a fire, a lot of your valuables, along with your property, get destroyed. And often, these belongings are highly precious with rich histories and sentiments. So, it becomes extra challenging to overcome the struggle of such losses.
However, to determine the number of damages you have suffered to get the compensation you deserve, you might have to seek assistance from a public adjuster. They can help you find the valuables you have unfortunately lost during the fire and help you to include them in your insurance claim further. Here you can see more and find out how public adjusters can help you deal with this delicate matter. Moreover, they will take a lot of stress off of your mind.
However, you need to immediately remove all the items that are too damaged to fix. But be careful since some electrical appliances hold electricity for some time, even after unplugging. It will also be helpful to remove all your valuables and belongings that aren’t damaged to prevent further contamination.
4. Air quality
Smoke carries a lot of elements that pose serious health threats. Fires can increase pollution and affect air quality. They can cause harmful effects to your eyes, lungs and also cause heart failure. Particle pollution can even lead to premature deaths. Therefore, you must limit your exposure to smoke after a fire especially, if you are a heart or lung patient, an older adult, or have children.
Air smoke can also leave an unbearable odor if not properly cleaned. The smell can hide behind your furniture, like behind the cabinets or in wall cavities, for a very long time. You need to hire professionals with special machinery to get the odor out of your place since washing won’t do much good.
5. Deep cleaning
After a fire, you must thoroughly consider all items beyond repair and require deep cleaning or stain removal. Professionals are most likely to use specific cleaning products, keeping the material, mold, and mildew in mind. Removable items like curtains, carpets, and fabrics usually require deep cleaning since they stain easily.
Emergency pre-cleaning is highly essential to prevent your items from further damage and needs to happen at the earliest.
6. Belonging’s inventory
Your mitigation company usually decides how to handle your possessions. At times, some companies control collecting inventory to owners while some agencies plan it out for you.
It is best to hire a company that offers assistance with inventory creation post-house fire. You’ll already have enough on your plate, including the alleviating stress, to do it all yourself. Some companies also offer to keep your belongings in a secure facility for a certain period.
7. Garment restoration
People often get too busy restoring items like electrical appliances and furniture that they forget about clothes. In reality, the soot from a fire can damage your clothes to the extent that they become unwearable. But of course, you need clothes to wear!
Therefore, you need to look for a professional laundry service to help you restore your clothes. Some fire mitigation agencies allow their clients to contact such laundry service providers to take yet another stress of your head.
You can even lookup for such services online. Several dry-cleaning services offer to pick and drop from home to save your time.
Finding the right consultancy agency is imperative during your fire damage restoration process. Make sure you hire an experienced mitigation company that can help you with most of your needs. Always check for a company’s license and insurance. A registered certification will prove that the company has undergone sufficient training. You should also check for reviews and refer to references.
And most importantly, always inquire whether a company meets industry standards r not. Again, do not try to restore your fire-damaged property yourself. It is risky and can become too overwhelming.