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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Battling the Aftermath of Soot Damage Following a Fire

9/7/2022 (Permalink)

Sometimes even the smallest house fires can cause considerable damage. Not only can you experience fire damage on your walls and ceilings, but you may also suffer from extensive soot damage, which can be difficult to clean up. Here are a few tips on addressing soot after you experience a fire in your home.

What is soot?

Soot, sometimes called lampblack or carbon black, is a fine dark powder that can be sticky and is a product of incomplete combustion. It is unsightly and leaves a foul smell. During a fire, soot spreads to the whole house, attaching to several surfaces. The acidic properties of soot can damage your home if the soot is not removed immediately. Unfortunately, a simple swipe of a cloth will not help; you need professional remediation to completely remove it.

Do all house fires generate soot?

Most of the materials used for the construction of your home can catch fire and help it to spread throughout the structure. Unfortunately, this can spread the effects of the flames all throughout your property, which means you will experience some level of soot in your home after a fire has occurred. While you might be tempted to simply clean up the soot on your own, as mentioned above, cleanup is best left to the professionals, as it can be more difficult to completely clean than you might imagine.

How can soot be removed? 

Removing this residue requires multiple approaches. For wall surfaces, scrubbing with wet and dry sponges can often remove the bulk of the present film. Confined spaces like ductwork require high-powered vacuums to get used instead. SERVPRO of Phoenix can assist in cleaning ductwork. Smoke damage often presents itself in the form of a harsh odor lingering in fabrics, carpeting, and open spaces throughout affected areas of your house. Removal of this odor typically requires thermal fogging to break apart odor molecules and leave no discernable scent behind. Depending on the extent of soot damage found in the home, our highly trained technicians will know exactly what to do to address the soot throughout your home.

Call in fire clean-up specialists

Most often, the considerable effects that stand out from a house fire of any kind are smoke and soot damage. These are common versions of fire damage in homes, and they can often prove to be challenging to remove without the right equipment. Fortunately, our SERVPRO professionals have the tools and expertise to help you through often widespread soot damage throughout your household. While the most concentrated of this effect can get found around the fire originating point where it burned the longest, this is not always the case. The debris and film from the combustion leave a dark, often black residue on surfaces, furniture, flooring, and other materials. That is soot. Unless the fire didn’t spread at all and was quickly extinguished, it’s time to call fire clean-up specialists, or those skilled in fire damage remediation, to help with clean-up.

If you suffer a home fire, regardless of the extent of damage, it is a good idea to contact SERVPRO of Phoenix to help with all your fire damage remediation needs, including addressing soot. We can be reached 24/7 at 480-503-2090. Let us help restore your home to pre-fire condition.

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