Essential Steps For Dealing With Smoke Damage In Your Home

Cleaning smoke damage in your home is a difficult task that should be addressed as quickly as possible to minimize health risks and structural damage. Smoke damage causes discoloration and leaves a sticky, acidic film on surfaces. The first step in the cleanup process is to vacuum loose soot from floors and walls. This helps prevent spreading or driving the soot into carpets, floorboards, and textured wall finishes.

Remove Smoke and Soot

As much as we might like to avoid it, smoke damage Puyallup is a reality for many homes. Smoke residue is not only unsightly and oily, but it can also damage furniture, carpets, and clothing. Soot can corrode metal surfaces and cause wood to warp. The lingering odor can also be a severe health issue, causing respiratory problems and headaches. The first step in cleaning your home from smoke damage is to vacuum all the loose soot. Ideally, you’ll use a power-dry vac (with mask, gloves, and goggles), but a standard vacuum with a hose attachment should work just as well. Be sure to open as many windows as possible to encourage airflow and speed up the process. When cleaning soot from your walls, take care not to scrub too hard, as this could grind the discoloration deeper into the surface of your walls. You can use a dry chemical sponge to remove soot, available from most home improvement stores, or clean it with a mild detergent and water.

Clean the Walls

As with all cleaning, it’s essential to use gloves and a respirator mask to protect yourself from soot, dust, and chemicals. Ventilate the area, and open windows to help with dehumidification as you clean. Start by dry-sponging the walls with a sponge impregnated with a dry cleaning chemical. Dip a microfiber or lint-free cloth into your cleaning solution and wash the walls, focusing on areas with stains or spots. Rinse the area and dry the wall thoroughly. You can also try spraying the walls and ceiling with a powerful deodorizer. This should help reduce the odor caused by smoke damage in your home.

Clean the Carpets

Carpets, curtains, and furniture made of synthetic materials can become permanently stained in just a few days. However, they can be cleaned if they aren’t significantly affected by heat, water, or the chemical agent used to extinguish the fire. It is essential to clean these materials as soon as possible before the smoke particles can infiltrate the fibers and cause irreversible damage. Additionally, these particles can irritate the skin and eyes. If not cleaned properly, these irritants can cause itchy, red, and watery eyes that are difficult to recover from. Remove as much loose soot and ash as possible using a vacuum cleaner with an upholstery attachment. This will help you avoid scrubbing, which can make the stains worse. Next, grab a clean rag and soak it in a cleaning solution you choose, such as commercial soot and smoke remover, rubbing alcohol, white vinegar, or TSP (Trisodium Phosphate). A few tablespoons of your preferred cleanser in a gallon of warm water should do the trick.

Clean Upholstery

Smoke damage to furniture and drapes can often go unnoticed for a long time. The fabric attracts soot and other particles, especially those with acidic properties like carbon. Luckily, there are a few steps you can take to make the process of cleaning smoke damage easier. It would help if you started wearing safety goggles, a mask, and gloves. Next, vacuum up any loose soot. Then, brush or rag to scrub the affected area with a mild cleaner. Finally, use a sponge meant for absorbing moisture, such as one you would find in your car, to rinse the area with clear water and blot it dry. Lastly, test any cleaner on a small portion of your upholstery that isn’t visible to ensure it doesn’t affect the color or material.

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