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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Tasks You Can Complete Before Fire Restoration Help Arrives

4/11/2019 (Permalink)

A home fire is stressful regardless of the extent of the damages, but the good news is that if you hire a professional, many of the damages can be mitigated through restoration.

Working with a professional has several benefits—not only will they work with your homeowner’s insurance company on your behalf, but they will also be able to salvage more items in the cleanup. However, as you’re waiting for help to arrive, it’s natural to want to do what you can to get started.

While some things should always be left to the professionals, a few things are safe for most people to do while they wait. If you’re ready to start on fire restoration ASAP, here are three things you can safely do:

Preliminary Cleaning

Tile, countertops and other non-porous surfaces can benefit from a scrub with soap and water to cut through the initial layers of grime. Using a mild dish soap or alkaline cleaner is safe, but let the professionals handle the usage of anything more heavy-duty.

Cleaning improperly can result in more severe and possibly permanent damage to your surfaces, so if you’re unsure about anything, leave it to the pros.


Getting started on laundry right away is the best way to help the cleanup process, as most things will have to be washed several times to get the smell of smoke out. Washing any clothing, bedding or other machine-washable materials with an alkaline cleaner or vinegar solution is a great place to start.

Delicate fabrics, upholstery and curtains should be left to professional care.

Increased Ventilation

If weather allows, opening windows and doors will help reduce the smoky smell—be sure to let them remain open as long as possible. The restoration team will bring industrial-grade equipment to aid this process once they arrive, but increasing ventilation on your own is a small step you can take toward helping the process along.

If you’ve been affected by a fire, SERVPRO®’s team of trained professionals can help your life get back to normal.

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