Here’s Everything You Need To Know About Restoring Fire Damages To Your Property.
A fire can ruin a structure in a matter of minutes. If your property sustains damage due to a business fire, house fire, outdoor fire or wildfire, United Water Restoration can connect you with the most qualified fire damage restoration professionals in your region. We hold the service providers in our system to high standards, such as a one-hour call back window and timely arrival on location.
The time frame of any restoration project depends on the current condition of the structure and the extent of the primary damage, as well as any secondary damage that may be developing. Find out more about fire damage, from common fire causes to basic prevention and safety tips. We also sum up the most effective professional cleaning techniques for fire-damaged contents and materials and offer pointers for property owners preparing to make insurance claims to cover the cost of restoration.
What Is Fire Damage Restoration (Remediation)?
The restoration process should start with the most accurate assessment of damage possible. Try to account for the square footage of a structure that has been affected by fire as well as the extent exposed to soot or smoke damage or high temperatures. This may affect how many materials or contents are candidates for cleaning and restoration and which items you should claim as losses.
As soon as the fire is out, property owners should gather insurance information and document damage in preparation for filing a claim. Insurers want to see proof of mitigation, or efforts to limit and prevent further damage to a structure and its contents.
United Water Restoration Group can put you in contact with qualified fire damage restoration services near you.You may prefer to rely on separate, specialized mitigation and restoration services or request a remediation service capable of starting and finishing the restoration process and handling various types of primary and secondary damage.
What Are the Most Common Causes of Fire Damage?
Understanding the basic principles of fires and fire safety is essential to avoid common fire damage causes. Fire requires air and fuel in order to ignite and thrive. Air is everywhere, and fire can feed off of almost any flammable materials, including most organic materials such as cellulose and other plant fibers, wood, and paper. Once a fire starts, it will spread and seek more air and fuel.
House fires tend to happen in cooler weather, as this is when heating elements are more frequently in use. The month of January holds the record for the most fires. From fireplace fires to furnace fires and space heater fires, the necessity of heating a home or workplace is actually one of the riskiest factors. Other common residential fire causes include cooking fires, such as kitchen or grill fires, other outdoor fires involving decorative fire features or combustible substances, and flammable materials found in most home garages and workshops.
Commercial fires start for the same reasons as residential fires, but these fires may be more severe, depending on the use of a structure. Building codes often have strict specifications for the detection, notification, and suppression systems used in structures zoned for different uses.
What Can You Do To Prevent Fires?
Basic fire safety skills can prevent most fires from starting or intensifying. Awareness of the fact that fire always seeks air and fuel and tends to climb can help you make potentially life-saving decisions when faced with a fire that has already started.
If you have a fire extinguisher or other suppressants such as baking soda and salt (for grease fires), you may be able to put out a minor to moderate blaze yourself. Otherwise, you should try to prevent the fire from spreading until firefighters arrive. These three tips can increase your level of fire safety at home and work:
- Make sure a structure has a sufficient number of alarms, smoke detectors or sprinklers. It is also a good idea to have extinguishers that contain the right class of suppressant for a particular location. Test all fire safety and suppression equipment on a regular basis.
- Come up with at least two ways to evacuate from any room in a structure. Practice taking these routes on a regular basis.
- Learn simple fire safety skills such as avoiding doorknobs and testing doors for heat and crawling to avoid the worst heat and smoke.
It is always a good idea to call the fire department after a moderate to large interior fire has broken out, even if you have successfully suppressed and seem to have extinguished the blaze. Hidden fires can continue to burn behind walls unnoticed and ultimately cause what appeared to be a minor fire that had been controlled to become a total loss with little or no warning.
How Is Fire and Smoke Damage Remediated?
Fire damage restoration or remediation starts with a thorough cleanup. If the fire department has been on the scene, hundreds or even thousands of gallons of standing water may be present. This water was clean and treated when it came out of a fire hydrant and hose, but it immediately becomes highly contaminated by soot and smoke.
Restoration companies that provide a full range of remediation services have all of the equipment necessary to handle combined fire and water and damage. After all of the standing water has been extracted, remediation experts may take further measures to reduce moisture levels, such as running dehumidifiers.
Burnt or charred building materials and contents should be torn out or disposed of and replaced. It may be worth the cost to attempt content cleaning on items that are very precious, rare or valuable, such as art or furniture. Keep in mind that any charred materials or substances contain chemical compounds that can contaminate an otherwise clean structure and which may pose health risks. The final stages of remediation may involve air filtration and deodorization techniques designed for eliminating stubborn smoke smells.
When Should You Call a Fire Damage Restoration Company?
Whereas minor water damage can be mopped or toweled and dried with fans, minor fire damage has the potential to contaminate an entire structure. Charred or singed building materials and contents undergo chemical changes that may elevate the risk of health or sanitation issues at a residence or commercial property. For this reason, we recommend contacting restoration professionals after a fire of any size or level of severity.
Fire and Smoke Damage Restoration Costs
A small to medium-sized fire at a home or business can cost several thousand dollars. Larger fires can cost tens of thousands of dollars to repair. Complete losses and rebuilds are even more costly. For this reason, homeowners and general commercial property insurance policies include coverage for most types of fires. Be sure to check policy limits and any stipulations when making a claim.
Working With United Water Restoration Group
United Water Restoration Group brings together the best fire damage restoration companies across the country. With a single phone call, you can have bonded, certified, trained and qualified damage cleanup and restoration experts on site within a matter of hours. The sooner that you start the restoration process, the less severe secondary damage is likely to become. Call 1-800-430-5838 toll-free today to arrange for a call back from a local or regional fire restoration service.