The Difference Between Smoke & Fire Damage

Smoke and fire damage are very different. Fire damage forms as a result of an actual fire; heat and smoke are two completely different issues. Smoke is the residual odor left in your home or business by the burning of things such as household items, furniture, drapes, and carpeting. The material that has been burned away during a fire remains hot for a short amount of time. After being extinguished it will smolder or burn slowly into what we all know as soot and smoke. It is a sticky substance that can be very difficult to remove and will often mask other odors with which it comes into contact.


Smoke Damage

This means the removal process for smoke damage can vary. The structure of where the fire occurred has an impact on the severity of the damage done. It may include removing painted walls, ceiling tiles, carpeting, paneling, and many other items. These items must be properly removed using approved methods to not further contaminate the property or spread out the smoke odor.

There are four common types of smoke damage (dry smoke, protein residue, fuel/oil residue, and wet smoke) that are each caused by different circumstances like the fire’s temperature, fueling materials, and location. The smoke damage restoration process varies slightly for each. A professional will know exactly how to handle each scenario in order to properly restore your home or business back to its original state.

It is important to note that even after you have cleaned up from a fire or smoke event; there is still an odor left lingering long after the area has been dried out. This lingering odor can be detected for weeks following the smoke and fire damage.


Fire Damage

However, fire damage differs from smoke damage. Fire damage causes deeper damage to the structure, but it is easier to clean up. This damage occurs when smoke travels down into the structure of a building. Fire can burn away at fabrics and wood materials, causing them to melt down leaving behind a black or brown residue smell.

Fire damage causes charring or burns along with ceilings, walls, and floors where flames have traveled through the building. If you turn over any charred wood material and find that it appears black instead of brown or white then chances are it’s been affected by fire damage.

If you are going to remove the soot and smoke smell from your home, it is important to make sure that there has been no fire damage first. With proper cleaning, these smells can be removed along with any discoloration they left behind. If you try to eliminate the smoke and soot smell without getting rid of any fire damage, it can actually make the situation worse.

If you have fire damage, before attempting to remove the smoke smell it is recommended that you hire a professional restoration company. This will ensure that all of the damaged areas are taken care of properly. Removing the soot and smoke smell without getting rid of any fire damage can be done with proper cleaning techniques and knowledge.

Smoke and Fire Damage Restoration

In the end, smoke and fire damage need specific cleanup processes. Although they originate from the same source, both cause a different level of damage done to the property. Smoke damage needs to be sucked out of the material. While fire damage needs to be scrubbed off the surface in simpler terms.

Smoke and fire cleanup procedures should be handled with the knowledge of restoration professionals. United Water Restoration Group of Daytona Beach has the properly trained professionals needed for these tasks. Call us at (386) 677-1856 for one of our fire restoration professionals to come out and repair your post-fire damages.

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