How to Remove Smoke Damage
How to Remove Smoke Damage
In the past, we’ve taken some time to tell you about all of the different fire damage restoration services that we offer here at Delta Restoration Services. (If you haven’t yet, be sure to check out our blog post about these services here.) But one of the things that often leaves people stumped is how to remove smoke damage. Most people think that cleaning up smoke damage is as simple as throwing your clothes in the wash or scrubbing your walls. Unfortunately, it’s just not that easy. In today’s article, we’ll talk a little bit about why that is and how to remove smoke damage. Whether it’s something you decide to take on yourself or get professional help with, we think it’s important for you to have as much information as possible. We’re always committed to making our industry easier for you to understand.
A Refresher on Smoke Damage
Before we get into how to remove smoke damage, it’s important to give you a little refresher about what smoke damage is. Understanding why smoke damage is so hard to clean is one more step toward being able to remove it. Everyone knows that smoke is a gas that is released when materials reach a certain temperature, but many people don’t know that it’s actually made up of a variety of particles. In fact, smoke is made up of solid, liquid, and gaseous particles. All of these particles mix together in the air to create smoke. These tiny particles are the ones that become trapped in your materials, whether in your hard or soft contents. Some of these particles, like soot and ash, leave horrible stains and odors behind that can last for an incredibly long time. So why is it so hard to clean up these particles?
One of the most important things to understand is that every material in your home has pores. They might not be possible to see because they’re so small, but it’s true. Even the walls of your home have pores. And when a fire exposes these materials to extreme temperatures, their pores open up. Remember all those smoke particles we just talked about? When the pores of your materials open up, it gives those particles a chance to settle in. But that’s not the worst of it. Unfortunately, once the fire is gone and the temperature returns to normal, those pores shrink back to their normal sizes. When this happens, the particles become trapped inside those pores with no way to escape. That’s one of the reasons why restoration companies like us actually use heat to clean your contents. By reopening those pores, we’re able to fully clean them out.
How to Remove Smoke Damage with a Chemical Sponge
Still, there’s no reason to panic if your home has smoke damage. There are things you can do to help. One thing that you can use to remove smoke damage from your walls is a dry-cleaning sponge, also known as a chemical sponge. With these special sponges, you can wipe away soot and ash that has collected in your walls. Chemical sponges work because (as the name suggests) they contain various chemicals that help clean up smoke damage. But people also refer to it as a dry-cleaning sponge for a reason. Never try to clean soot from your walls with water before you use a chemical sponge. Doing so can actually hurt more than it helps. The water can spread the soot particles around, making your walls effectively impossible to clean.
To use a chemical sponge, gently wipe the smoke damage on your walls. Keep doing this until the surface of the sponge gets dirty. Afterward, cut off the dirty sections of the sponge with a knife or scissors. This should reveal more of the clean sponge underneath so that you get as much use as possible out of it. You should also make sure that you’re using wiping motions while you clean. If you scrub the smoke stains instead, you can spread those smoke particles around and drive them deeper into your walls, which only makes them harder to clean. The last thing you want to do is buy chemical sponges only to make the problem worse than it was before you started. Still, chemical sponges can be a great way to take care of pesky smoke stains and smells that are lingering in your walls.
Encapsulating Sealers and Contents Cleaning
Remember how we talked about the fact that smoke particles become trapped within the pores of your materials? Well, cleaning out those particles isn’t the only way to effectively deal with them. It’s also possible to use something called an encapsulating sealer. Often, an encapsulating sealer comes in the form of smoke-sealing paint. Instead of cleaning out the pores, you can use this paint to completely seal off the pores of your walls or floors. Doing so prevents the smoke particles trapped inside from reaching the air, thus preventing any lingering smells or stains. Encapsulating sealers can be a great way to take care of pesky smoke stains and smells without having to worry so much about the cleaning process. If you’re interested in learning more about how to remove smoke damage, we recommend checking out this article here.
Of course, you won’t always be able to take care of smoke damage cleanup on your own. Sometimes a disaster is more than you can handle, and sometimes you’re not able to clean your valuables in time. That’s where we come in. Delta Restoration Services is the only restoration company on the Western Slope with access to full capability, state-of-the-art contents cleaning. We have the technology and experience to clean even the toughest stains. Our Esporta wash system removes soot from soft contents, and our ultrasonic cleaner and ionizer are perfect for getting rid of smoke stains in your hard contents. So whether you can’t get the smell of smoke out of a treasured blanket or the walls of your home, we can help. We have the resources necessary to handle the toughest jobs, no matter what they might be.
*This post was written by Third Loft Marketing.