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What You Need to Know About Smoke and Soot Cleanup

When you have recently dealt with a fire, whether it was a small one or a large one, you now need to look at the smoke and soot damage that was done to your home. Smoke and soot are two byproducts of a fire, and if it is left untreated, it can make things in your home very unpleasant for months to come. Consider what you need to know to start the process of taking care of this damage.

Soot Is an Oil
When most people think of soot, they think that it is a sediment, like ash. They think that they can sweep it up or wipe it off. The truth of the matter is that soot is actually an oil. It is a byproduct of the fire, which will deposit it on a number of nearby surfaces. When you see soot on a surface, you must treat it carefully. When you are taking care of soot on your home surfaces, you need to lift it off of the surface completely, and then you need to cover the surface to prevent it from being affected by soot that is left in the air or that will be blown around by your subsequent cleaning.

Safety First
As you work on cleaning your home, you need to make sure that you stay safe. For example, if any electrical appliances have been near the fire, you need to get rid of them. Similarly, you should not use any ceiling fixtures if the ceiling looks wet. Finally, make sure that you do not move forward until a fire inspector has said that your home is safe. Even if your home looks sound, do not re-enter it until you have gotten the all-clear.

Taking Care of Fabric Goods
Fabric goods are usually the easiest things to clean after a fire, but even they can pose some challenges. For large furniture, you can use a vacuum to lift up soot and dust, but this must done very carefully and very gingerly. If you can secure clothes and curtains, consider soaking them in detergent and water before washing them. You may also take a sample of your clothing to a dry cleaner to see what they can do for you.

Call in Professionals
If you want to take care of the soot and smoke in your home, remember that you should always feel comfortable pulling in a professional!