After a House Fire Waiting for the Restoration Company
SERVPRO of Marlton/Morningside knows exactly what steps to follow after a fire. Give us a call and we will assess the damage to your home.
Things to Do After a House Fire While Waiting for a Cleanup Company
A fire in your home, even if it is a small fire, can create a lot of problems that you need to deal with. While the majority of the cleanup is often contracted to a clearing and restoration service, you can do some things while waiting for the restoration company to start your cleanup.
Limit Traffic in the Home
Once the fire department releases the home to you, keep the number of people walking through the house to a minimum. Things like soot and other debris can quickly grind into carpets and upholstered items, and it will be much harder for the restoration company to remove from the fabric.
If you do need to move around in the house, lay down some plastic runners in the traffic areas, and try to keep everyone out that does not need to be in the building. People often want to see the aftermath of the fire, but if they don't need to be in the house, they just add to the potential problems and could be a safety concern.
Cover Your Furnishings
If the furnishings in your home are still relatively clean after the fire, put some plastic over them to keep dirt, soot, and ash off the upholstery. The upholstery may smell like smoke or other odors from the fire, but if the fabric is still clean, dealing with furnishing restoration is much easier.
Clean Out the Fridge and Freezer
The electricity to your home is often shut off during fire suppression efforts, and if you can’t move back into the home for a while, take the time to clean out the refrigerator and the freezer so that the food does not spoil and ruin the appliances. Once all the food is out, prop the door open on both the fridge and the freezer to keep them from getting musty or growing mold inside.
Unplug Appliances and Electronics
If appliances or electronics are in the house that may turn on when the power comes on, unplug them from the outlets. If the items do not appear to have damage on them, they could have water damage inside or a short that you can’t see.
Something as simple as a wire with the insulation melted off could create a spark and start another fire when the power comes on. Unplugging the attached electronic or appliance is the safest way to isolate it and make sure everything is in working order.
Retrieve Your Important Documents
If you have documents in your home that are important like birth certificates, death certificates, your marriage license, or important insurance documents, retrieve them from the home as soon as possible. The longer these documents stay in the home, the more likely they are to sustain damage, and some of the documents will be hard to replace.
Locate the documents and put them in something secure to protect them. Move them to a safe deposit box, or invest in a lockbox to keep with you until you are able to return to your house. If you decide to keep the documents with you, make sure the lockbox is fire-, water-, and tamper-proof so that you don't risk losing these documents again.
At SERVPRO of Marlton/Morningside, we specialize in cleaning up after a fire in your house. We have the experience, tools, and manpower to help you pick up the pieces after a fire of any size. Give us a call and we will assess the damage to your home, let you know what it will take to clean it up, and get started right away so we can get you back in your house.
Things You Can Do for Your Home After a Fire | SERVPRO of Marlton/Morningside
If you've experienced a small isolated fire or a complete burn down, you need a property restoration company to properly assess the damage. SERVPRO of
Without a doubt, a house fire is catastrophic to a family. It does not matter if the fire completely destroyed everything or if only a portion of a single room was involved, your family will be greatly affected. You want to get things back to normal as soon as possible, which means you’ll need a professional fire damage company to do repairs and restoration.
But while you wait for the professionals to do their work, you can take care of some things yourself. Of course, you must wait until the fire department gives you the all clear that the place is safe for you to enter. Even if only one room was involved, you need to know that the house is secure. In any fire, burning materials release toxic fumes that linger and can be dangerous if you inhale them.
In addition to toxic fumes, the structure of the building may be impaired. The fire department is trained to inspect all the places that were involved in a fire and decide if the house is structurally sound or not, which is crucial before you can enter. Once you have been told the house is safe to enter, here are a few things you can do yourself.
Secure the House
You do not want any more damage to the house after a fire. To ensure that the house is secure from wind, rain, and any unwanted people, board up all windows and doors that are damaged. If the roof or walls were damaged, be sure to put a tarp over the open areas if you cannot cover them with wood.
If the whole house was damaged, you may want to put a privacy fence around the property. You don't want anyone going in or being around the place who may get hurt, cause more damage, or even take things from your exposed house.
Pump Out Water
Firefighters use a lot of water to put out a fire. You need to get any standing water out of the house before it starts to mold. You can rent a pump from a local tool rental facility. Make sure the fire department and electric company have okayed the use of the electricity for the pump. If not, ask a neighbor if you can run an extension cord from their home to the pump.
Some of your belongings won’t have survived the fire. Go through your home and throw out anything that is not salvageable. This includes getting rid of food items in the refrigerator and cupboards. Be sure to get rid of burned clothing, medicine, and cosmetics too.
Pull Out Furniture
If the furniture has not been burned but is covered in ashes or has water damage, you should pull it out of the house. Even if you do not see any soot or water, the material will smell like smoke. Taking the furniture outside gives it a chance to dry and air out. Keep in mind the pieces will still need to be professionally cleaned if you plan to keep them.
Ashes and soot are difficult to remove from furniture, walls, floors, and ceilings. Getting the smell out of the house and furnishings is also hard to do. Professional fire restoration companies understand what is required and have all the equipment and know-how to get things back to as normal as possible.
Whether you need to have a few pieces of furniture cleaned, or the whole house restored after a fire, contact SERVPRO of Marlton/Morningside to take care of things for you. We can handle it all so you can begin rebuilding your life.