What To Do When Water Damage your Property After A Fire

Fire alone can have a very devastating effect on your property. It can possibly ruin the whole structure of your house and will result in a costly repair. The aftermath of fire damage does not end after extinguishing the fire itself. Soot and smoke that are normally present can be toxic to humans’ health and requires professionals to be removed and to properly clean the whole property, in order for the home to be inhabitable again.

While water is considered as a great opponent of fire, it is one of the culprits that can bring severe damage to your property. With great pressure from fire hoses,  walls, ceiling, furniture, and others have the possibility to break down. Mold colonies follow when water used in putting out a fire is not removed immediately. Mold begins to grow in your house 24 hours and will eventually eat away materials they considered as food, such as wood, floorboards, and others. Additionally, mold can cause harm to human’s health.

Both water and fire can damage your property and can even cause harmful effect on a human’s condition. It is important to address the situation right away and understand the necessary actions to take.


Ensure Safety Before Entering your Home

After a disastrous event, there could be invisible damage that can be very dangerous.  Before re-entering your house, ask the officials who are walking into it to know if your home is free from danger.

While you are outside, you can do a little inspection of how fire and water damage to your roof, ceilings, walls, and floorings. Check thoroughly electrical damage. If you notice damage on it, it means your house is not safe to return.


Notify Your Insurance Company

When it is announced that your home is safe to re-enter, giving your insurance company a call is top on the list. Notify your agent about the disaster that happened and they will inform you that an adjuster will visit the area to check the damage.

After determining the damage, your agent will inform you of what will your insurance cover and how much you will be spending. During this time, you can inquire whether your insurance company will give you a temporary shelter and provide you food expenses.


Record the Damage

Capture all the damage that was made by fire and water. Provide photos or videos of the belongings, walls and even the growth of mold. Moreover, create a list of all the items in the house that were included in the damage.

This information and documents are used to prove the damage of the disaster and are helpful in approving and speeding up the process of the claims.


Contact a Professional

When you are done making an insurance claim for the fire and water damage your property has acquired, look for a proficient professional restoration company that will handle the damage in your property and will coordinate with your insurance provider for the claim.

It is vital to contact a restoration company without delay to prevent downward spiral. An infestation of mold growth is what you have to watch out if water still remains in the area. With a delay, they will damage other parts of your home.

A professional restoration company will assess the extent of the damage, create a plan and provide the best solution in restoring your property.


Dry Out Your Home

While waiting for the professionals to come over your house and check your property, it is best to air out your home. If the weather is perfect enough to help in circulating air, open all the windows and doors. Additionally, let the cabinet doors and drawers open, to allow air to move. If electricity is safe to use, set up an electric fan throughout the area.

Floor rugs that were soaked in water should be removed to avoid further damage with the floorings. Place a foil under the furniture legs to prevent water from seeping upwards and cause further damage.


What NOT To Do after A Water Damage

There could be a lot of things to do in mitigating damage caused by a fire and water disaster. However, it is important that we listen to what professionals say about certain activities that we should never do in the aftermath of water damage. Some examples are;

  •    Wet electric appliances must not be used because doing so can generate danger.
  •    Never use a vacuum to remove excess water, instead use a sump pump if it is available.
  •    Do not enter a room that has experienced structural damage


Trust Square One Restoration

When your home has experienced water intrusion and fire destruction, it is most likely that your home is a complete mess and restoration and cleaning are unsafe and challenging. Water can easily spread in the entire area and can worsen the damage. Mitigating the damage as quickly as possible is crucial.

Square One restoration professionals have complete equipment and skills in mitigating the damage and restoring your property. They act fast, assess the damage and make a plan suitable for the situation. You can trust them with your worries because they can bring back your property to its normal state and becomes safe to live in.

Understanding Professional Fire Damage Restoration Process

The destructive nature of fire is no secret. It can wreak havoc on any property no matter how much you try to prevent it. While home and commercial properties are usually insured against fire damage, they rely on fire damage restoration companies to bring their buildings back to operation in a short time.

If your home or building ever suffers from fire damage, you might wonder whom you should call for restoration work and why? The answer is a professional fire damage restoration firm. That’s because fast and effective action is essential to minimize damage to your property.

Why Rapid Action Is Essential to Minimize Damage?

Smoke and soot are always present at the building where the fire occurred along with residual water. If you don’t act fast, your building can suffer from significant damage.

Soot can Damage Surfaces

Soot is a direct result of burned material. Depending on what the fire burned, soot could be acidic and it can cause damage to nearly any surface it comes in contact with. Textured and porous surfaces are particularly vulnerable to soot staining. Soot damage is troublesome because the soot remains in the air, discoloring plastic, unburned wood, textiles, and carpeting. This goes on even after the fire has been extinguished. The longer the materials stay exposed to soot, the harder it will be to reverse the discoloration effects. You may have to replace the damaged items.

Mold Infestation

Since moisture remains in the air even after the fire has been extinguished, it can interact with mold spores causing mildew. In darker, damper spaces, mold thrives due to the moisture and produces mildew. Mildew will usually stain absorbent and porous surfaces including clothes, marble, wood, carpeting, and others. Full fire damage restoration includes removal of mold infestation and mildew vegetation. Moreover, moisture that can cause the mold to return is also removed using commercial grade dehumidifiers and air movers.

Air Quality will Degrade

A pungent odor will permeate the air in the home or commercial facility after the fire has been extinguished. This is caused by different individual odors being combined into one. For instance, mildew continues putrefying the air until it’s completely removed from all the surfaces which were affected by it. Quickly getting commercial grade dehumidifies, air movers, and air scrubbers into the affected area can reduce the effort it would take to remove the odors otherwise.

Restoration Work

Even minor restoration work should be left to an Institution of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration or IIRC-certified company. These companies are trained to carry out fire damage restoration work safely and effectively. You might be wondering how professional fire damage restoration works. So, we have discussed some important steps involved in the restoration process.  

  • Inspection and Assessment

Fire damage restoration experts will come to your commercial property or home to determine the extent of the damage. This includes inspection of the property for soot damage, smoke damage, and presence of moisture in the air. Assessment of fire damage to your property is essential for determining how restoration work should commence.

  • Sealing Breaches and Tarping the Roof

Experts will seal comprised windows, walls, and doors to ensure that no one tries to enter your premises. If the roof of your property is damaged, they will tarp it to protect your building from water damage.

  • Water Removal (If Necessary)

Before any restoration work, the fire damage restoration professionals will address water damage (if necessary). They will remove all the standing water and use commercial grade air movers and dehumidifiers to dry the affected building.

  • Soot and Debris Removal

The distinct odor that fire leaves behind is in part attributed to debris and soot. So, debris will be promptly removed to reduce the odor’s intensity. It will help the restoration crew in bringing the building to its original condition.

If there are any burned materials present on the ground, they will all be removed by fire damage restoration professionals. Otherwise, the soot that’s covering them could cause significant damage to the property.

  • Deodorization and Sanitation

The next step in the restoration process is the deodorization of affected furniture and materials and sanitization of all areas affected by water. Odors will be removed using commercial grade equipment to ensure better air quality at your commercial building or home. Smoke odors will be completely eliminated; otherwise, they will keep on reminding you of the sad incident.

  • Repair and Reconstruction Work  

The fire damage restoration professionals will take care of all the repair work. They will repair the structure and restore your property’s interior to its former condition.

Final Thoughts

Hopefully, you now understand the importance of fast and effective fire damage restoration and how professional fire damage restoration process works.  

If your home or commercial property suffers from fire damage, call Square One. The experts from our professional restoration company will bring your building back to its original condition.

Preventing Fire Damage and Water Damage While on Vacation

You have finally booked a flight to your dream destination and are planning to go on a well-deserved vacation with your loved ones. Vacations are great because they allow people to relax and make memories, but sometimes the joy and excitement of the holidays turn to pain when you return home and discover that your place isn’t how you left it. While you are gone, fire and/or water can wreck your home as these forces of nature don’t take breaks and can cause damage anytime.

To ensure that your vacation doesn’t turn into a bad memory, we will show you some important things you must do before going on holidays to prevent fire damage and water damage while you are away.

Things to do to Prevent Fire Damage

Fire can wreak havoc in minutes. While the firefighters will extinguish the fire while you are gone, the damage will be done by the time they are finished. Therefore, take these precautions before going on a vacation to decrease the probability of your home catching fire.

  • Check the Smoke Alarms

The battery of your smoke alarms may have worn out. If that is the case, it won’t go off when a fire starts. So before you leave for the trip, test all your smoke alarms to see if they are working fine and replace the batteries. You won’t be in the house, but your neighbors might be able to hear the alarms going off and call the firefighters who can extinguish the fire before it turns your home into ashes. It would be a good idea to inform your neighbors that you are going on a vacation so that they can stay alert to respond to fire damage.

  • Unplug all Unnecessary Electronic Equipment

Since you will be away for several days or a couple of weeks, it makes no sense to keep unnecessary electronic items and applications plugged. So before going on a vacation, unplug all unnecessary electronic equipment like TVs, video game systems, microwave, computers, mobile chargers, etc. This will reduce the risk of fire from an electrical malfunction.

Things to do to Prevent Water Damage

Water damage can destroy your home, especially when you are away and can’t do anything to minimize the damage. Therefore, do the things listed below before leaving for a vacation to decrease the risk of water damage.

  • Turn off Water Supply

Turn off the main water supply to reduce the risk of water damage. If you have to leave it on due to some reason like to keep the sprinkler system operation, then consider turning off valves to your bathrooms, laundry room and kitchen. In the unfortunate event that there’s an issue, water won’t flow unrestricted while you are away since you turned off the valves.

  • Clean the Gutters

If your gutters are clogged and it rains, the rainwater wouldn’t drain away from your home. When that happens, water will start accumulating around your home’s founding, leading to water coming inside your home through the foundation walls or basement windows. Therefore, before leaving for a vacation, remove debris and leaves from gutters. If you can’t do it yourself, hire a plumber to clean the gutters for you to ensure that you are protected against water damage from clogged gutters.  

  • Make Sure Your Sump Pump is Working

Sump pumps collect excess water and pump it out of your home’s basement. If you have one installed in your basement, make sure that it is working fine before going on a vacation. To see if your sump pump is working, pour some water into the sump and see it pumps it out. Also, check the battery backup of your sump pump if you have the backup system and consider adding it if you don’t.

  • Get Leaks Fixed

Minor leans often conceal internal corrosion that could result in a rupture any time. So, if you notice any nagging leaks, get them fixed before you leave for your vacation.

Final Thoughts

We have discussed some important things you should for preventing fire and water damage to your home while you are away on vacation. However, despite taking these precautionary measures, your home can still suffer from fire damage or water damage. If that ever happens, call Square One for water damage or fire damage clean-up and restoration. If you find out about the damage while you are still on a vacation, call us at 602-714-1092 and give us your approval to do the clean-up and restoration work while you are away.

Fire Damage Restoration Process

No matter how big or small the damage is, attributed by fire, it can be very devastating to its owner. The effects of fire do not just end after extinguishing the fire itself. There’s more to do. Actually, there are numerous things to do, cleaning, salvaging contents and restoring the property. Thus, seeking professional help is highly advised.

Doing the cleanup process yourself can be very challenging as it requires a lot of effort, time and knowledge. DIYing is not applicable as a fire cleanup can be very dangerous. Immediate response is critical in this kind of situation to avoid more serious and severe damage to your property and even to you and to your whole family. Restoration companies have all the means required in helping owners do the cleaning and restoring the property.

Moreover, safety is on top of their list. They make sure that your home is perfectly out of danger to live in.


Advanced Tools and Equipment

Fire damage restoration companies are fully equipped with all the tools and equipment they need in doing the job. Mitigating the damage vary depending on how much the effect is in an area or how severe the damage is. Thus, proper equipment is important for each step of the process.

Expertise and Knowledge

Professional technicians have enough knowledge in doing the job correctly and quickly. They are trained and educated before they could handle the situation. They know what they are doing and are careful in avoiding further damage. They understand how fire damages the property and have a list of guidelines that they follow throughout the process.

Cost Effective

You can’t really be confident with the work of non-professional restoration team. They might leave your property with some invisible effects such as discoloration, odor or some electrical damage. That could lead you to hiring another set of restoration team.

Let the professionals do all the necessary actions. Make sure to hire a fire damage restoration team that is IICR certified. Our company has sufficient equipment and tools and experienced people who can handle minor to major kind of disaster. Avoid doing DIY. Better contact our team right away.


Fire Damage Inspection

The first thing we have to do after receiving your call is giving a thorough inspection of the area. This is to assess the extent of the damage and to figure out the cause of the fire. Detailed inspection of the area is really important as Square One professionals will base their action plan to what they have seen and documented. Our team will then give the owner the estimated cost and period of the restoration process.

Immediate Property Security

To some extent, fire damage involves damaging the structure of the walls and roof. Thus, this could lead to further damage or what they call secondary damage. During this time, our team will board-up damaged doors, windows, and damaged outer walls. This part of the restoration process secures the physical safety of your property.

 Water Removal and Drying

Water left in the property is normally caused by extinguishing fire. Water set in the property could lead to further damage such as penetrating the infrastructure of the building and furniture or other belongings.

Our expert technicians will then need to remove any excess water and dry out the whole area to abstain mold from growing.

Smoke & Soot Removal

The next step we have here is removing smoke and soot residue. Smoke and soot can be harmful to health and could cause further damage to the property if not taken care immediately.

Our professionals will use specialized equipment and state-of-the-art techniques making sure that we carefully clean, sanitize and remove any residues in the affected area.

Complete Property Restoration

The last stage is about repairing and restoring. This stage usually includes repainting the walls and ceilings, replacing wallpaper or tiles, repairing broken furniture and so much more, like a total renovation.

Our team will make sure that we bring back your property to its original condition or even in better shape.

Square One Company is and will always be here to provide excellent and quality restoration services.