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Helpful Tips


Fire Damage

What to do:

  • Discard open food packages. The food could be contaminated.
  • If electrical service is off, clean out your freezer and refrigerator. Leave the doors propped open or place charcoal in the unit.
  • Send clothing with heavy smoke damage to a qualified professional dry cleaner.
  • Clean Formica chrome, porcelain and aluminum fixtures in the kitchen and bathroom to prevent permanent tarnishing or etching.
  • Change the air filter on your furnace if it uses forced hot air.
  • Tape cheesecloth over intake and outlet air registers to capture any loose soot in the air. This is even more effective if the cheesecloth is damp.
  • If the outside temperature is above 60 degrees, air out the house to reduce smoke odor.

What not to do:

  • Do not attempt to touch or wash any papered or flat painted walls without contacting your professional cleaner.
  • Incorrect cleaning procedures could compound the soot residue problem and oil from your skin could cause additional damage.
  • Do not attempt to clean carpets or upholstered furniture. Again, incorrect procedures could increase damage.
  • Do not use electrical appliances that have been close to fire or water before having them checked. They could malfunction.
  • Do not use ceiling fixtures if the ceiling is wet. A short circuit could result.
  • Do not touch anything. Soot on your hands can permeate upholstery, walls and woodwork, causing further damage.
  • Do not eat food that has been exposed to fire or smoke.
  • Do not wait to call for professional help.
  • Do not attempt to start your computer as it may be subject to additional damage.

 
Water Damage

What to do:

  • When the outside temperature is above 60 degrees, use dehumidifiers if available.
  • Use fans in conjunction with dehumidification equipment to circulate the air and assist drying.
  • Remove as much water as possible by mopping and blotting.
  • Wipe furniture dry.
  • Lift draperies off carpet, loop through a coat hanger, and place the hanger on the drapery rod.
  • Prop up wet furniture cushions for even drying and place small wood blocks or aluminum foil under furniture legs.
  • Remove wet area rugs or other floor coverings.
  • Open furniture drawers, closet doors, and luggage to enhance drying.
  • Move photos, paintings and art objects to a safe, dry location. Remove damp books from shelves and spread out to dry.

What not to do:

  • Do not use an ordinary household vacuum to remove water.
  • Do not use electrical appliances while on wet carpet or wet floors.
  • Do not go into rooms with standing water if the electricity is still on.
  • Do not lift tacked-down carpet without professional help.
  • Lifting the carpet incorrectly could promote damage and delamination.
  • Do not wait to call for professional help. Damage from the water and bacteria growth can begin within hours.
  • Do not disturb mold if it is visible.