The Need for Fire Restoration
It’s a sad fact of life that homes and businesses sometimes catch fire, and that of course includes homes and businesses in Indianapolis and elsewhere in Indiana. In 2017, fires produced 23 billion dollars in property damage. That figure would have been a little lower if not for the California wildfires, but it presents a huge amount of money every year.
The good news is that, provided the fire didn’t destroy a building completely, fire damage restoration can return it to its former condition. It’s essential, though, to act quickly, especially to protect the structure and property that survived from further smoke damage.
Effective fire damage restoration begins with determining the extent of the damage, protecting undamaged items, and starting repairs. Taking the steps outlined below will minimize the cost of the fire damage cleanup and prevent future problems associated with weakened structural elements and smoke damage.
Fire Damage Restoration: Assessing the Damage
The first thing to do is to determine what isn’t damaged, what is, and what the damage consists of. How deeply did fire penetrate the structure? How thick is that layer of soot? Where on your fixtures, furniture, and walls are there telltale signs of heat damage?
Only professional fire restoration companies have the expertise to make a proper evaluation in the aftermath of a fire. You’ll want to be sure the fire damage restoration service you choose truly is qualified. To that end, do some research even though time presses. Check into the history of the service and consult with your insurance company. Look at online reviews. Make sure the service is licensed and certified. Don’t end up with a less than expert fire restoration service or, worse, one that actively takes advantage of homeowners at vulnerable moments.
In addition to assessing damage, your fire damage restoration service will record and document damage to help you file your insurance claim. They’ll get undamaged furniture and other belongings out of the house as soon as possible to avoid damage from lingering smoke and embers.
Fire Restoration: Preventing Further Damage
Following the assessment, your fire damage restoration service’s first priority will be preventing further damage. They’ll fill any holes in weakened structure and repair or replace singed walls. They’ll deal with any water damage that may have occurred as a byproduct of putting the fire out. (You want a company that’s accomplished at addressing both fire damage and water damage.)
Your fire restoration service will also see to it that the building has the moisture and vapor barriers necessary to keep dampness from getting in the next time it rains. This is critical for fighting mold growth and the serious health problems it can bring.
Fire Damage Restoration: Cleaning and Removal
The smoke and soot from a house fire typically produce a staining that goes deep. It’s likely that only a deep scrub, sanding, and refinishing will get rid of it.
If there’s been water damage, the pros will need to pump and air out all the water and dampness. They’ll use special heaters and fans to dry out everything, and after that, they’ll sanitize. Once again, it’s essential to see to this quickly to avert the growth of potentially hazardous mold.
To eliminate lingering odors, they may find it necessary to clean upholstery and carpets throughout the building. You should consult with them before they take this step, however. This cleaning can run into money. You may want to throw away certain inexpensive, easily replaceable items instead of having them cleaned.
Fire Restoration: Repair
The professionals can often save damaged family heirlooms, treasured keepsakes, and other prized possessions. Naturally, they know how to repair more basic elements of the home as well.
When the paint on walls or ceilings has bubbled or blistered, the fire restoration service scrapes and repaints.
Wood surfaces can be harder to deal with. If unfinished wood had acquired an odor, applying a sealant may eliminate it, but that doesn’t always work. If it doesn’t, the unfinished wood will be probably need to be replaced.
Finished wood is somewhat easier to deal with. Restoration involves stripping, sanding, and refinishing. That gets rid of any trapped odor.
Fire Damage Restoration: Is It Time to Renovate?
If the damage was extensive, and a significant portion of the home is beyond repair and needs replacing, you may want to consider renovating. This can be the ideal moment to make changes you’ve been thinking about for a while, and living in a somewhat altered environment is a way to create emotional distance between you and what may well have been a traumatic event.
Fire Restoration: Final Thoughts
As you can see, fire damage restoration is a complicated process, and you need certified, experienced professionals to take care of it. If you’ve had a fire, we invite you to call Five Star Complete Restoration. We’re experts at fire restoration, water restoration, and mold mitigation, and we can handle every aspect of the process.