House fires are terrifying and devastating. Often caused by the simplest things like an overflowing boiling pot, or leaving a curling iron on, your whole house can suddenly burst into flames. If your home has been damaged by a fire and you are needing a roof replacement or fire damage restoration in El Paso, TX, call Roof Solutions and Construction at (915) 263-8774 today.
What is Fire Damage Restoration?
Fires are not the only devastation your home will face. Even after all the flames are put out, your home will have smoke and soot damage, and will probably have flooding damage as well. This is from the firefighting efforts and hoses. Not only would you need to get fire damage restoration done to your home, but also water damage restoration as well. If the water damage is not severe, you may only need water damage cleanup efforts.
Whatever the case, it is much easier hiring the help of professional restoration companies who specialize in removing fire or water damage from homes then trying to do it yourself. You may miss key areas or not have the training or tools needed to perform the job. If you have homeowners insurance, a fire damage restoration service will be provided for you. It is important to call your insurance or the restoration company immediately after the fire so they can start saving as much of your home as they can.
How Do You Clean Up After a Fire?
After the fire has safely been put out and you have been granted access to enter your home again, your need to start fire damage cleanup right away. The reason the process needs to occur as soon as possible is because this gives you the biggest chance at saving valuables, furniture, and clothing. If it is deemed unsafe to enter, wait until the professionals arrive to do an expert fire restoration procedure, as they are trained to salvage items safely in extremely damaged homes.
If you are granted access to do fire damage cleanup on your own, the first thing you should do is open all the windows and doors to ventilate the home and try to air out as much smoke as you can. Then begin scrubbing everything with alkaline cleaner which helps to remove the smoke damage. While doing all that, wash all fabrics with the alkaline cleaner to remove smoke damage from lingering in the linens as well.
Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Smoke Damage?
Depending on what items the smoke has damaged, most of the time, yes, your homeowners insurance should cover it. This is due to the fact that smoke damage falls under the “covered peril” clause in homeowner policies. Especially for fabric and wood-based items where the smoke tends to get absorbed into it, your insurance should pay to have them cleaned, repaired, or replaced.
Items like marble and tile can discolor from the smoke damage, but this is where you may experience some disputes with your insurance company. Your insurance will oftentimes try to opt for cleaning or repairing versus replacing, as these methods are cheaper. If your marble or tile cannot be cleaned to remove the discoloration, you may have to argue your case for a replacement reimbursement.
So how much does it cost to clean smoke damage? A full-scale fire damage restoration cleanup can cost anywhere from $3,000 to $27,000. If you are only paying a fire damage restoration company to only clean up smoke damage, you are looking at around $1,500. It is important to get the smoke damage removal because of the lingering effects of soot, which is extremely dangerous. Soot are the little black powder balls made of carbon that are the result of incomplete combustion, and are dangerous to breathe in. Is soot carcinogenic? Yes, and prolonged periods of exposure to it have been linked to resulting in cancer.
What Often Gets Damaged the Most in Fires?
- Roofing. Depending on how severe the fire was, it could have reached all the way to your roof, requiring you to need a roof replacement. Most of the time, fires are caught quickly enough to where the flooring and walls are damaged.
- Clothing and other fabrics. Linens hold in odors, and smoke has a very distinct smell. With so many different types of fabrics all over your home, a ton of things are going to have smoke damage. Pillows, bedding, couches, clothing, rugs, and even pet beds will trap the smoke damage.
- Furniture. Anything can get damaged by fire and smoke, especially furniture made out of wood. Just like fabric, wood is a porous material, so smoke is able to sift inside the tiny holes and get trapped there.
- Carpet. Your flooring is the first thing that always seems to get damaged, whether that be from water or fire.