fire-184885_640Winter comes fast in Colorado, and so does Denver smoke damage. Snow can fall as early as mid-October, and temperatures can plummet into the single digits as soon as the first week in November. Sooner than other areas of the country, it’s commonplace in the Denver area to find wood burning stoves and other classic forms of natural heating. Not surprisingly, these are also some of the most common causes of household fires and smoke damage in the home.

While there is some minor clean up you can do on your own, you really are best to leave such an important job to professionals like NuBilt. However, we’ve put together a list of “Dos and Don’ts” for if and when the unfortunate does happen.

The Dos:

  • Contact your insurance agent immediately about hiring a professional fire damage restoration company. The longer it takes to get a professional inside to assess and start cleaning up, the greater the chance irreparable damage could set in.
  • Get permission from your local Fire Marshal before you enter the building or residence. Your desire to get back inside as soon as possible to assess the damage may be unsafe if an official hasn’t given the official ‘All Clear.’
  • Make sure you wear protective clothing such as goggles, gloves, and facemasks. The lingering effects of fire and fumes can be very hazardous.
  • If large amounts of water were needed to extinguish the fire, dry everything saturated as soon as you can. Get windows open so rooms can be ventilated and use dehumidifiers and fans to quicken the drying of drapes and carpets. If carpets are not dried completely, the floors and structures beneath could be severely damaged bymold and mildew.
  • Place plastic wrap or aluminum foil under the legs of furniture to prevent metal legs from staining and wooden legs from absorbing any moisture.
  • Because smoke can cause etching in copper or brass in as little as twenty-four hours, you should carefully clean all chrome, copper, and brass fixtures.

The Don’ts:

  • If you still have power, don’t use ceiling fans or turn on any fixtures if the ceiling is wet.
  • Don’t eat or consume ANY canned goods, foods, medications, or drinks that were exposed to the heat or smoke of the fire.
  • Don’t clean soot! If your upholstery is covered in soot, do not attempt to clean it. Soot easily stains textiles because it is oily. Also, using any kind of water based cleaner to attempt to wipe soot off walls can cause stains to become permanent.
  • If any appliances or electronics have smoke damage, don’t plug them in or make any effort to clean their internal parts.

Fires and smoke damage are devastating experiences to have to live through. Following this simple guide will help you do what you can, while avoiding making anything worse while you wait for NuBilt to help get you back to the life you knew.