Smoke Damage: How to Get Rid of Fire Smoke in A House
Cooking mistakes commonly cause smoke damage. Either something is forgotten on the stove or the oven. Smoke smell is usually strong in the room where the accident happened, but sometimes you end up smelling it all-around the house.
The good news is that smoke damage can be taken care of.
These tips are useful for people who have had a small accident that was taken care of very quickly.
If your accident is severe enough to cause a fire or if you are experiencing nausea or headaches, leave the area and call a professional smoke damage cleanup company. Inhaling fire smoke can be hazardous to your health.
Light Smoke Damage Cleanup
First, get rid of the source of the smell.
Whatever has burnt -- whether it be food or a kitchen towel that caught fire -- it’s time to throw it away. Wrap it with a plastic grocery or zip-lock bag to help seal the odor inside, and then carry it outside to the dumpster. Getting rid of the source will immediately eliminate the bulk of the smell out of your house.
Open your doors and windows and let the smoke dissipate outdoors. Ventilation will help some of the smoke from settling in your home and will leave less for you to clean.
Then, deep clean.
Clean the room where the incident happened. Start at the top and work your way down -- this helps any small soot particles fall to the ground.
Wash walls, windows, and other surfaces with mild soap. Rinse thoroughly
If you have cabinets or drawers in the area, open them up, clear them, and clean the inside of them as well. Whatever was in the cupboard or drawers should also be washed.
Any knick-knack that can be washed needs to be cleaned, too. Continue using water and mild soap.
Finally, if your floors are made of a hard surface, give them a good scrub. If you have carpet, you may want to rent a carpet cleaning machine at your local hardware store or hire a local carpet cleaning company to deep wash it for you.
Are you thinking about using candles and aerosols? Save the expense. These items mask smoke odor for a little while. The smoke smell won’t be gone until all the smoke particles have been removed from your home.
Not Enough? Time for Pro Smoke Damage Cleanup
If the steps above didn’t go the trick or if you have clothing, carpet, or furniture and upholstery, then it’s time to consider hiring a smoke damage restoration company. Be prepared to tell them:
- What caused the smoke damage. Smoke is particles of that time that did not fully combust and is now in the air. Different items create different types of smoke, which require various techniques to clean properly.
- Where it occurred.
- Where you smell the smoke.
- What types of items are affected. They will bring the right tools and equipment to clean whatever was affected.
A smoke damage cleaning company will visit your home and inspect the damage. They may bring specialized sponges to test different surfaces of your home and check for smoke and soot particles.
After their inspection, they should give you an estimate for the cleanup and a general timeline of how the cleanup process will take.
If the damage is significant enough and you need to file an insurance claim, the odor removal company should be able to work with your insurance adjuster to help process your claim. Ask them if they have experience with insurance claims before you hire them.
Smoke Damage Repair
Cleaning smoke damage in a house will require different tools, techniques, and an eye for fine detail. Since smoke can get anywhere, the cleanup process can be time and work-intensive. These are some techniques you may see used:
Removing Smoke Odor From Clothing
Throwing your clothes into your home washing machine may not get rid of smoke smell. In some instances, your clothes may smell worse as the smoke particles embed themselves deeper into your clothing fibers. The most effective way to get the smoke particles (and thus the smoke smell) out of your clothes is to get them washed in a machine called the Esporta Wash System.
Advanced restoration providers have these sophisticated machines in their offices. The device uses water, hydraulic pressure, and a mixture of up to six detergents to make your clothing and other textiles food-grade safe.
Ask your smoke damage restoration company what method they use to clean clothes.
If you’ve searched for smoke damage cleanup, then chances are that you’ve seen articles about ozone generators. Ozone can effectively eliminate smoke odor, but should only be used carefully. For best results, hire a professional.
Deep Wash Carpet Cleaning
Your carpet may be able to be saved. Ask for a deep wash carpet cleaning. Professional fire damage restoration providers use powerful truck-mounted carpet cleaners to push detergent-laden hot water into the fibers of your carpet and extractors to get the soot out.
Upholstery and Drapery Cleaning
If your smoke damage cleanup company has carpet cleaning machines, chances are they will also have the proper equipment to clean your drapes and upholstery the same way they did your carpets. Upholstery and drape cleaning tools are made to handle the delicate fibers.
Air Duct and HVAC Cleaning
Smoke rises into the air and can settle inside of your air ducts. The next time your AC turns on and blows air, that soot will blow out with it. This is why it’s important to get your air ducts inspected and the soot removed before the AC runs again.
If your items need to be cleaned, a sophisticated fire damage cleanup company will have an ultrasonic cleaning machine. This machine looks like a tub of water with billions of small bubbles floating inside. Items are dunked inside the device along with detergent, and every part of the piece is thoroughly cleaned in just minutes.
Move-Out, Storage, and Move-Back
When fire and smoke damage is bad enough, some or all of your home’s contents may have to be temporarily moved out to be able to clean your home correctly. Ask your fire restoration company how your items will be inventoried, cleaned, and stored.
Fire Damage Restoration
If your smoke damage was caused by a large fire that caused damage to your home, read about our fire restoration process. Fire cleanup can be hazardous and should be left to experienced professionals with the proper safety equipment and tools.
We Provide Fire Restoration Near You
Need some help? We’re here for you. We've been fire and smoke odor removal specialists for over 30 years, and we have restored thousands of properties after damage, and we guide our clients from the start of their restoration to the very end.
Give us a call or leave us a message and let us know what’s happened. We’ll meet you and give you a free consultation and estimate.