Restoration professionals will agree that the longer it takes for the neutralization and cleaning processes to start, the higher the risks for more potential damage and restoration costs. Prolonging the restoration of your home will amplify the effects brought on by the smoke exposure. Here is a timeline of the effects of fire and smoke on a home.
Within minutes – Acid soot residues cause plastics to yellow. Small appliances located close to the source of combustion and highly porous materials (marble, alabaster) will discolor permanently.
Within hours – Acid residues stain grout in bathrooms. Fiberglass bath fixtures, uncoated metals, counter tops, finishes on appliances, and furniture finishes will discolor and tarnish.
Within days – Acid residues cause painted walls to yellow permanently. Metals will corrode and rust; wood furniture and vinyl flooring will require refinishing or replacement. Clothing becomes soot stained and upholstery stains permanently.
Within weeks – Restoration costs will increase dramatically. Synthetic carpet fibers may yellow or discolor permanently. Silver plate is corroded permanently; glass, crystal, china may require replacement due to severe etching and pitting caused by prolonged exposure to acid soot residues.