When the unthinkable happens and a fire breaks out in your home, the devastation that follows is enormous. Once the fire has been extinguished, it is critical to act quickly to prevent further damage. As the smoke settles, so too does soot and the lingering residues of all the chemicals that were stored in your home. This makes it important to hire professionals to help with smoke smell remediation.
Chemicals In the Home
An average home contains approximately 62 toxic chemicals. Most of these chemicals are found in everyday items, such as:
● Weed killers
● Cleaning agents (dishwashing liquid, drain and oven cleaners, detergents, bleaches, etc.)
● Liquid petroleum gas
● Swimming pool agents.
● Rubbers and plastics
Suffice to say that, in most households, these items are stored away safely. Nevertheless, what would happen if these chemicals came in direct contact with heat—say in…a house fire? It is not hard to imagine. You could cause serious damage to your home, yourself, and the people you love. The smoke and fumes alone can land the strongest individual in the ER. Let’s not forget, the smell of smoke can linger around for days. The services of professionals who are trained in smoke smell remediation will prove to be invaluable as you work to make your home safe again.
The Components of Smoke
All smoke contains dangerous particles to breathe in, most notably carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide. There are also many harmful chemicals found in smoke. Depending on several factors of the fire, such as what was burned, how much oxygen was present, and the burn temperature of the fire, the amount and type of these chemicals will vary. Smoke particles are very tiny, and they can still linger even when you cannot see them with the naked eye. They can also seep through cracks and crannies and cling onto surfaces. This can make smoke smell remediation an exceedingly difficult process.
Health Effects of Inhaling Smoke
More than half of deaths from fires are caused by inhalation injuries. It is one of the most devastating types of traumas: the exposure to fire and smoke. But what about residual smoke? This is often referred to as Third-hand smoke, a term coined to describe the cancer-causing compounds that occur when tobacco particles mix with gas particles in the air. The dangers for your health that are presented by smoke make it crucial to properly perform smoke smell remediation. Research has shown that particles can be absorbed into almost every surface. Items such as carpets, rugs, clothes, bedsheets, wall paint, car dashboards, and even toys all have the potential to absorb smoke and its smell.
Inhaling any type of smoke for prolonged periods can cause illnesses like heart disease, stroke, and lung cancer. Additionally, inhaling smoke created by toxic chemicals can cause respiratory irritation, headache, noisy breathing, shortness of breath, and it can also worsen existing medical conditions, like heart disease and asthma. The faster you can begin the process of smoke smell remediation, the better off you will be.
Temporary Smoke Smell Remediation
If the smell of smoke has penetrated the air and surfaces of your home, these are some inexpensive, temporary first steps you can take to help with smoke smell remediation:
● Air out your home for several hours every day by opening windows and doors.
● Use an air purifier
● Wipe down surfaces with natural cleaning agents
● Leave saucers of white vinegar out at night to neutralize smells
● Light scented candles
● Get indoor plants that can absorb up to 87% of indoor air pollution
● Leave orange peels around your home
● Place activated charcoals around your house.
Expert Smoke Smell Remediation
You might have carried out the above and still feel unsatisfied. Or you might have moved into a new home and be wary of the smoke residue left behind by previous tenants. Or possibly, the damage you have experienced goes far beyond what any temporary smoke smell remediation can fix. Whatever the case, it is probably time to call in the cavalry to assist you with smoke smell remediation.
Smoke smell remediation technicians will come in and clean all surfaces using specialized equipment. This often includes hydroxyl generators or ozone generators. It enables them to target hard-to-reach odors that are often inside walls and joints.
Then they will seal surfaces with a sealant designed to seal smoke residues. Only then will your surfaces be ready for a new coat of paint or new cover. Remember, smoke smells can seep through fresh paint layers. So, get your surfaces professionally cleaned for smoke smell remediation before you embellish your home to your heart’s content.
While fires make headlines, not much is said about the smoke it causes or smoke smell remediation. It is important to understand the effects of smoke and how it can be treated.
Working with a professional who specializes in smoke smell remediation can make this process easier.