Fire Damage Emergency Tips

What you can do until help arrives

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Damage from fire alone can be extensive, but so can the effects of the smoke. Before our fire damage restoration experts get to work, there are a couple of things you need to do. These two steps will benefit your family’s health and the healing process from the disaster. 

The first thing you need to do is get children and pets into a smoke-free environment. This is because smoke contains gases that are carcinogenic. Not only are these cancer-causing gases, but they can cause other health problems as well, such as respiratory issues. You’ll want your kids and pets to stay with a trusted neighbor, family member, or friend nearby until a better temporary home can be found. They will need to stay there until fire restoration is complete. 

The second important thing to do is to inventory the contents of your home. Most importantly, list all items that will need replacing. You also want to take pictures of the fire damage. The inventory and photos will make filing a claim with your home insurance company much easier. Also, make extra copies for your own personal records and potentially fire investigation authorities. We suggest making at least five copies of the inventory and photos to have on hand.

Have Smoke or Fire Damage? Call (212) 768-9400

What To Do After A Fire

  • Limit movement in the home to prevent soot particles from being embedded into upholstery and carpets.
  • Keep hands clean so as not to further soil upholstery, walls and woodwork.
  • Place clean towels or old linens on rugs, upholstery and carpet traffic areas.
  • If electricity is off, empty freezer and refrigerator and prop doors open.
  • Clean and protect chrome with light coating of petroleum jelly or oil.
  • Wash houseplants on both sides of leaves.
  • Change HVAC filter.
  • Tape double layers of cheesecloth over air registers.

What NOT To Do After A Fire

  • Don't attempt to wash any walls or painted surfaces or shampoo carpet or upholstery without contacting us.
  • Don't attempt to clean any electrical appliances that may have been close to fire, heat or water without consulting an authorized repair service.
  • Don't use any canned or packaged food or beverages that may have been stored near the fire, heat or water.
  • Don't turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet. The wiring may be damaged.
  • Don't send garments to an ordinary dry cleaner. Improper cleaning may set smoke odor.

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