Fire damage is not an easy thing to recover from, especially when some of the things you value the most have been damaged by fire and smoke. While you can still keep some items, you must let go of certain items, even if they hold special meaning to you. It may be hard, but keep in mind that it is for you and your family’s safety.
What is smoke damage? Smoke damage refers to the detrimental effects caused by smoke particles and residues during a fire, including discoloration, soot deposition, corrosive damage, lingering odors, and potential health hazards.
Smoke damage can cause a lot of issues for homeowners, read more below to find out what you should throw away after a fire.
What to throw away after smoke damage
Smoke damage can have significant consequences on both the structural integrity of a property and the belongings within it. he by-products of smoke, such as soot and toxic residues, can infiltrate various materials, leaving behind stains, odors, and potential health hazards. In the aftermath of a fire or smoke-related incident, it is crucial to assess the extent of the damage and identify items that are no longer salvageable. To help guide the restoration process, here is a list of common items that are often recommended for disposal due to smoke damage.
Perishable Food Items
You should get rid of food items that are in permeable containers, such as cloth, thin plastic bags, and cardboard. While sealed food may look fine, they are not safe to consume, especially if it has been closely exposed to fire. High temperatures can encourage the development of certain bacteria that can cause spoilage or cause the food to taste bad.
Electronics & Appliances
Smoke can damage electronic devices and appliances, especially if they were directly exposed to fire or heat. It's advisable to consult with professionals to assess the extent of the damage and determine if repair or replacement is necessary.
Medicines & Cosmetics
Any medications, vitamins, or cosmetics that were exposed to smoke should be discarded. Heat and smoke can alter their composition and render them ineffective or unsafe.
After a fire, you should check your medicine cabinet and makeup storage. Check these products for signs of heat, soot, fire extinguisher dust and other damage. Anything that is warped from high heat exposure must go straight to the trash.
Clothing & Bedding
Items that have absorbed smoke odors extensively and cannot be effectively cleaned should be discarded. This includes clothes, blankets, pillows, curtains, and upholstered furniture.
Kids Soft Toys & Stuffed Animals
These items can absorb smoke and odors, making it challenging to fully clean them. It's often safer to discard them, especially if they are extensively damaged.
Furniture that has absorbed smoke odors and has been significantly damaged by fire or water should be considered for disposal. Smoke particles can penetrate upholstery, making it challenging to remove the smell completely.
Carpets & Rugs
Smoke can deeply penetrate carpet fibers, making it difficult to remove the smell and potential contaminants. It is often recommended to discard heavily smoke-damaged carpets and rugs.
Proper disposal of these items can aid in ensuring the safety and well-being of occupants and prevent further contamination or health risks.
Remember, these are general guidelines, and the extent of damage can vary in each situation. It's recommended to consult with professionals who specialize in fire damage restoration to assess the specific items and provide guidance on what can be salvaged and what should be discarded.