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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Putting out your fire until help arrives

5/7/2020 (Permalink)

If your Charlotte home is impacted by a fire, smoke, or soot here are some tips and do's and don'ts until help arrives...

The first 48 hours after a fire damage can make the difference between restoring versus replacing your property and personal belongings.

What you can do until help arrives

  • Limit movement in the home to prevent soot particles from spreading and additional damage form occurring.
  • Place clean towels or old linens on rugs and high traffic areas and upholstery.
  • Coat chrome faucets, trim and appliances with petroleum jelly or oil.
  • Place aluminum foil or wood blocks between furniture legs and wet carpet.
  • Do not wash any walls or painted surfaces.
  • Do not shampoo carpet or upholstery. 
  • Do not clean any electrical equipment.
  • Do not send clothing to a dry cleaner since improper cleaning may set smoke odor.

 DO:

  • Keep hands clean. Soot on hands can further soil upholstery, walls, and woodwork.
  • If electricity is off, empty freezer and refrigerator completely and prop doors open to help prevent odor.
  • If heat is off during winter, pour RV antifreeze in sinks, toilet bowls, holding tanks and tubs to avoid freezing pipes and fixtures.
  • Wash both sides of leaves on house plants.
  • Change HVAC filter, but leave system off until a trained professional can check the system.
  • Tape double layers of cheesecloth over air registers to stop particles of soot from getting in or out of the HVAC system.

DON'T:

  • Consume any food or beverages that may have been stored close to fire, heat or water. (They may be contaminated.)
  • Turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet. Wiring may be wet or damaged and cause electrical shock, and air movement may create secondary damage. 

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