firefighters prpearing for fire cleanup

Harmful effects of untreated smoke

Fire and smoke can inflict damage to both your property and health. While property damages can be immediately diagnosed and attended to, something like smoke inhalation can take its time to trigger health-related concerns in inhabitants. This being said, inhalation of untreated smoke from a house or office fires can infect your lungs, make it swollen or fill it with fluid.

This blog post features the top 5 harmful effects of untreated smoke that any property owner must be aware of.

Cost to restore

When your property suffers fire damage, restoring it via professional assistance should be your priority. Bear in mind that trying to restore any fire damage without proper tools and equipment can lead to untreated smoke lingering in the atmosphere which can slowly but steadily have a deteriorating effect in your health.

Additionally, if the condition is left unsupervised for too long, the smoke odor can be too pungent and difficult to neutralize. This has a direct impact on the treatment processes, equipments and time required, which in turn will escalate the cost.

Asset damage

Fire and smoke can cause both permanent and extensive damage to your assets. A mixture of smoke, water, and ash can contribute towards a corrosive element. This conglomerate can eat away walls, floors, and ceilings.

If not attended to immediately, untreated smoke can start decolorizing your walls and other surfaces. A common scenario is the walls turning yellow and corrosion of metal surfaces.

Some visible damages by surfaces are as follows:

Curtains and upholstery can accommodate soot and trying to vacuum or beat this off can result in pushing the soot deeper, which in turn can make it too difficult to remove.

Clothes and bedding can house chemicals from unburned substances. These are usually invisible and should be treated with proper chemicals to alleviate any odor concerns.

Hard flooring can always suffer the risk of water and sooth damage. It can also develop stains and other marks as a result of firefighting techniques. On most of the occasions, you need to deodorize, refinish or replace the flooring.

Soot deposits

Soot deposit is another concern from untreated smoke that can wreak havoc. Most people are unaware of the fact that soot if left untreated for long, can find it ways through other rooms within the house that was not affected by fire or smoke in the first place.

This results in staining of walls, carpets, clothing, and other household items.

Thinking ahead and acting quickly is the only ideal solution when you have encountered fire damage, which usually leads to untreated smoke, odor, and unfavorable living conditions. Note that as per the IIRC (Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification), the following timelines are standard when it comes to asset damage.

Porous materials and synthetics within your fire-affected property can get discolored within minutes.
Walls, flooring, and furniture can start getting stains within hours to days.

A couple of weeks can help the soot to deposit deep into the material structures which in turn can escalate the cost of restoration and the likelihood of asset replacements.

Smoke Residue Types

4 Types of smoke residues

Containing or preventing fire damage can be a challenge for property owners. Irrespective of the property type, overlooking even the minor fire hazards can turn out to be costly.

Severe or mild, a property fire incident will leave some residue behind. The effort and planning needed to clean this residue depends on several factors ranging from the severity of the fire damage to the type of substance that was subjected to fire.

This post highlights 3 types of fire smoke residue left behind after a fire incident.

Dry and wet fire residue

Fire damage to your house or any property type produces two types of residue: wet and dry. Even when it is easy to understand the type from the name, there is a big difference and complexity in understanding the effort needed to alleviate the respective concerns.

A dry fire residue is produced when the fire is classified fast burning and occurs with abundant oxygen supply. A wet fire residue, on the other hand, is a byproduct of substances burning slowly under a limited supply of oxygen. The wet fire residue can be the hardest to clean.

Dry Fire Vs Wet Fire Smoke Residue Comparison Table
Synthetic residue

Burning of oil-based materials like plastics and fabrics produces synthetic residue. The items in your house that can leave synthetic residue upon subjected for fire are window shades, furniture upholstery, carpets, and electronics. These items in question burn with a cloud of hazardous black smoke and leave a smeary residue.
Synthetic residue needs to be cleaned up professionally as it involves the burning of different types of chemicals.

Protein

Protein dominant substances like meat products and beans can leave a yellowish-brown residue. The residue after such instances can be sticky and requires professional gear and chemicals to clean up.

Kitchen fires are the prominent fire type that can leave this type of residue behind. The resultant odor can be a bit strong or unbearable. This makes deodorization an inevitable process in cleaning up such fire residue.

Fuel oil residue

Furnaces can often produce soot deposits due to incomplete burning of fuel oil. The incomplete burning scenario also creates thick smoke in addition to leaving greasy deposits behind.

It is easier to prevent fire damage than containing or restoring the damage post occurrence. Always think ahead and take the necessary steps to prevent fire at any cost. If your property has suffered fire damage, think smart and consult a fire damage restoration professional to ensure that the resultant residue is identified and treated in the best possible manner.

Kitchen fire in a house in Florida

Residential Fire: 5 Preventive Tips

How can I prevent a house fire? A question that can haunt most of the homeowners. Basic home fire safety requires careful planning and efficient implementation.

As per the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), the U.S. Fire department has responded to an average of 355,400 home structure fires per year between 2012 and 2016.

Losing your house to a fire is scary enough, think about an injury to your family members due to a residential fire. There are several fire preventive tips that you can consider to avoid such any potential havoc that can be caused via fire.

This post highlights some tips to prevent house fire. You can use this as a home fire safety checklist to ensure the safety of your home and family.

Kitchen mishaps

Did you know that kitchen mishaps are the most common cause of home fires and related injuries? Always act smart and cautious around your kitchen. Keep an eye out for the following aspects to alleviate any possibility of a fire breakout.

·        Do not keep flammable substances near stove or oven

·        Do not leave hot cooking surface unattended

·        Do not leave the kitchen while cooking, in case of emergencies; ensure that you turn the stove before leaving the kitchen

·        Do not place cookbook or towels near the stove

·        Ensure that no curtains or rug are hanging over the stove

Heating equipments

As per NFPA, heating equipment mishaps are the second most leading cause of fire fatalities. While using heaters during the night make sure that you keep them away from other objects.

It is safe to ensure that an area of 3 foot around the clear of any objects or obstacles. Trying to dry clothes or obstructing the heater with substances like paper or clothes is dangerous.  

Electrical cords

Electrical equipment and system inspection should be performed at least once a year. Watch those electrical outlets in the bathroom and attics closely.

Keep an eye out for frayed wires, and repair them immediately. Avoid bypassing the electrical codes through furniture or under the carpets as these codes can generate heat.

Stick with quality electrical equipments ranging from extension cords and surge protector. Even if the initial cost might be on the high end, it will be worth it in the long run.

Store wisely

Did you know that most of the cosmetic products that you use are flammable? That shaving cream and hair spray can go up in flames in minutes. Store such products wisely; for instance, do not keep them close to an electrical hair straightener or dryer.

Try and store materials like gasoline and paint away from the house, possibly an outdoor garage or store room. It is ideal store them in their original containers and to ensure that they are sealed tight.

Be equipment ready

Inspect your smoke alarms at least once every two months. Ensure that the batteries are replaced and they are operational.

Installing fire sprinkler system is the best way to deal with house fires. An alternative or add-on to this strategy would be to have a fire extinguisher stored in your home.  

Preventing a house fire might demand initial effort and time, however, it will save crucial amount of time and money in the future. What have you done to prevent fire hazards in your home? Let us know.

Pair of Red Fire Extinguisher Tanks in Front of Black Wall

5 tips to practicing fire safety in a commercial property

Protecting property and tenants from a fire breakout should be the number one priority of any commercial property owner.

Ensuring property fire safety compliance can be an overwhelming task. Foreseeing fire safety concerns and being proactive can help you avoid major losses and costly repairs.

Here are the five tips to consider when it comes to ensuring fire safety for your commercial property.

Fire safety measures

All the commercial properties, to abide by the local building codes, are required to install smoke detectors and fire extinguishers.

Contact your local fire marshal to learn more about any specific criteria your building needs to meet in terms of locality or any other aspects in regards to fire safety.

Installing automatic sprinklers is a smart means to ensure that any fire-related issue is attended at the very instant it arises. Investing in advanced fire safety technologies like water mist systems and wireless detectors can help you efficiently and effectively manage fire-related concerns.

No smoking policy

Enforcing a strict no smoking policy within your commercial property is inevitable for fire safety. Irrespective of what the property is used for, it is an absolute necessity to prevent smoking within the areas of the building.

Use no smoking signs on all areas of the buildings including the emergency/fire stairs and car parking. Ensure that all the new tenants and employees are made aware of the strict no-smoking policies within the premises.

It is not a bad idea to have smoking zones away from the building. Remember to tag these areas with fireproof waste containers.

Educate employees

Irrespective of the size of the building or the businesses that operate within the property, it is important to assign someone to be the fire safety operator.

The fire safety operator or warden, with proper guidance, can easily educate employees regarding the emergency procedures and escape routes and meeting places.

Additionally, it is important to ensure that the emergency evacuation building plans and diagrams are properly displayed on all levels in the building. Consider these aspects to planning a fire safety evacuation.

• Plan an evacuation procedure for employees that needs special care
• Choose a meeting point and inform the employees
• Ensure fire escape stairs are well lighted and not used as a storage

Keep an eye on storage

Storing unnecessary combustible materials can turn out to be deadly when it comes to fire safety. Keep the flammables away from your building. It is not ideal to store all the paper and cloth waste within the building, scheduling a weekly cleanup for these items is ideal.

Regular maintenance

Regular maintenance and frequent fire safety equipment tests/checks are mandatory. When doing the fire safety equipment inspection, it is ideal to follow these strategies:

• Replace any items that are warm or hot to touch
• Replace worn or old power cords and consider using cord protectors for these
• Ensure that the fire doors are operational and not blocked with furniture or boxes
• Ensure that chemical and equipment storage rooms are properly ventilated
• Test all the smoke detectors to ensure that they are operational

Fire safety compliance is critical for any commercial property. Even with all the safety measures in place, a fire breakout can still occur. This is where you need to look into a faster and efficient means to rebuild and restore. Contacting a certified fire restoration company should be your priority to achieve this without throwing your money down the drain.

Fire Damage Repairs in West Palm Beach

West Palm Beach is one of the most beautiful communities in a state already known for his incredible neighborhoods and amazing homes. That does not prevent fires and other disasters from happening and causing millions in property damage each year.

Fire damage repairs in West Palm Beach homes requires much more than covering everything with a new coat of paint or replacing scorched ceiling tiles and drywall panels. As a state-licensed general contractor (CGC# 1522221), with over a decade serving homeowners in our area, Titan Restoration can perform every task needed to return each residence to its pre-fire condition.

Our construction teams can rebuild everything from the ground up. Many residential fires start in the kitchen, so team specialists can expertly lay in new tile or linoleum to provide a beautiful look that sets off everything else.

Before that happens, however, our builders put everything else in place. They can replace cabinets and shelving so that everything looks as it did before, or, if the owner wants to upgrade, install the latest styles and hardware to match what the chief cook and bottle washer in the home may have been wanting for years.

Titan Restoration construction teams take care of everything over the kitchen as well. Our builders can replace the entire ceiling support here and throughout the rest of the home. They can also move interior, non-load bearing walls to expand the dining area if the homeowner wants to make further improvements.

Since every insurance agency has its requirements, our teams and office staff work extensively with every major provider in our state to help ensure the homeowner gets the full value from her policy. We understand that time is a cost factor when homeowners have to reside in hotels or motels and almost every meal means eating out.

At Titan Restoration, West Palm Beach is more than a customer base. It is the neighborhood where members of our staff work, play and raise their families. If you have suffered through a fire, and need the right team to help put it all back together, call us today at 561-345-3751 for a free estimate and to get the restoration process started now.

Click here for more information about the city of West Palm Beach.

Residential fire and smoke damage: Frequently asked questions

Fire damaged house in west palm beach

As per the statistics from the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), the public fire departments in the US have responded to 1,319,500 fires in 2017.

The fire departments in various counties responded to 149,893 residential fire cases and 22,308 business/mercantile fire cases during the period 2013 – 2017.

During the same period (2013-2017) an overall property loss worth $2,938,616,923 has been reported from a total of 620,002 reported fires across residential, commercial and unclassified properties.

Fire damage to a home or office property can be a big headache. While the former disrupts the concept of the best place to dwell, the latter can bring businesses to a standstill.

What can you do to prevent fire in your workplace or house? What are the precautions that you can take against fire damage? This post features some of the frequently asked questions related to fire damage to residential and commercial properties.

What are the main causes of a house or office fire?

Cooking, smoking and electrical negligence are considered to be the most common causes of home and office fires.
Electrical negligence: faulty wiring or failing to service or using faulty equipments without proper care can be the main triggers for fire. Do not overload the electrical sockets and ensure that none of your electrical equipments get overheated.

Cooking: getting distracted from cooking and leaving the situation unattended is surprisingly common in both house and workspace. It is ideal to have an automatic fire detection system for both office and residential cooking areas.

Smoking: smoking at home or office and not putting out a fire properly can easily trigger a fire. This is where a fire detector can come in handy.

How can you prevent fire accidents?

Follow these tips to prevent fire in office or residential properties:

  • Take extra care while cooking using hotplates and do not leave cooking unattended
  • Instal approved or certified smoke detectors throughout the property
  • Design a fire evacuation plan for office spaces and plan your escape route in case of residential fire
  • Considering electrical safety, do not flex wires together and get your wiring installation inspected by a certified specialist at least once every five years
  • How do you eliminate smoke odor in a house or commercial property?

    Recovering from a residential or commercial property fire can be a slow and painful task. Of all the things, eliminating the smoke odor after a property fire can be the most challenging.

    Smoke order is resilient and can easily tag itself to almost anything in your house or office space. Be it carpet, drapes, furniture or even walls.

    This is where you need to consider these 5 proven tips for eliminating smoke odor.

    What should I do if I had to use an excessive amount of water to extinguish a fire?

    Even when you have requested the assistance from a professional fire damage restoration service, you start doing some damage control of your own, while waiting for their arrival.

    If you ended up using excessive water, consider the following:

  • If the carpets seem to be completely soaked and beyond recovery, consider removing it
  • Resort to high powered fans; you can rent one from a nearby hardware store
  • Lubricate the metal items or furniture frames with petroleum jelly to prevent rusting
  • Foresee the possibility of mold formation and use commercial grade dehumidifiers
  • What should you not do during a fire?

    Do not attempt the following in case of a property fire

  • Do not try to kill a chip pan fire using water: water doesn’t mix with oil and it can cause an explosive reaction and spread the fire further
  • Do not use lift to evacuate the building
  • Do not take shelter in the cupboard or under the bed
  • Do not try and jump out the upstairs windows
  • Fighting a fire can be a difficult task and recovery can be equally painful. It is smart to foresee these aspects and make the wise move to prevent a property fire at any cause.

    5 proven ways to deal with smoke odor

    Smoke in a house picture

    Fire damage is the worst case scenario for any residential or commercial property. Recovery from fire damage can be painfully slow.

    Even when you have digested the reality of what has been lost; you are always in for a difficult road ahead in terms of restoring your property back to its original condition.

    In addition to the damage to the structural materials and other household items, the supplementary hazards from fire damage like smoke odor and soot pollution can disrupt the harmony of the inhabitants.

    The fact that something like smoke odor can continue affecting your wellbeing long after the fire has been extinguished is alarming.

    So what are the some of the proven ways to deal with smoke odor from fire damage? This post features some peerless tips to deal with smoke odor quickly and efficiently.

    Clean the air duct and the HVAC system

    Most of the house owners and to our surprise, even some fire restoration services overlook the possibility of smoke odor contamination via the air duct and HVAC systems. Any ductwork within your house is a potential spot for the smoke to linger.

    Smoke infested ductworks can degrade the air quality and pose a health risk to the inhabitants. We recommend replacing the air-conditioning filter after the along with other fire damage restoration processes. Also, get your HVAC system inspected for any possible damages pertinent to the fire incident.

    Wash the solid surface

    Prepare a solution with one gallon of water, a quarter cup of white vinegar and two or three teaspoons of shampoo to clean the hard surfaces.

    The advantage of this solution is that it can be used on multiple surfaces including doors, wooden floors, cabinets, furniture, windows and door frames.

    You can spray the solution on surfaces like window sills, cabinets and wipe it with a clean rag. Rinse the rag after each run using clean warm water for best results.

    Carpets & upholstery

    Carpets and upholstery are the main household items that are easily affected by smoke odor. The fiber-oriented structure entraps the smoke particles easily, which can be difficult to remove.
    Baking soda is a proven solution to remove smoke odor from carpets and upholsteries. Sprinkle the baking soda in affected areas and let it sit and absorb the smoke odor for a minimum of three hours.
    Vacuum the areas to remove the smoke odor effectively. We recommend using a HEPA filter vacuum as they are known to have a fine mesh that can capture the smallest harmful particles including pollen, dust mites, and even tobacco smoke.

    Thermal fogging machines

    Thermal fogging is another smart and proven way to alleviate the concerns of smoke odor from fire damage. A properly executed thermal fogging is one of the most effective means to control or remove smoke odor.
    Thermal fogging can neutralize even the fines smoke particles which are deposited deep inside fine cracks or pores on any household surface.

    The process of thermal fogging involves several tasks that should be carried out under the supervision of experienced technicians for the best results. This is why we recommend hiring experienced smoke odor removal technicians to carry out the task.

    Painted surfaces

    Using a glycol or ammonia solution is the best means to remove smoke odor from fire damaged painted walls. Wipe the walls thoroughly and let it dry, repeat the process till the odor seems to be under control.
    Do not hesitate to consider repainting the walls if the damage seems to be beyond cleanup. If you decide to repaint walls, we recommend using latex paint and primer customized to suppress any odor.

    Prolonged exposure to smoke odor from fire damage can have an adverse effect on your well being. The recovery period after fire damage is a crucial time where you have to foresee all the health hazards and act wisely. If you believe in the phrase “A small act of prevention can bring you long-term protection” and you don’t have time to invest in all these DIY smoke order removal tips, we recommend hiring a fire damage restoration specialist.

    Burned interiors after fire in industrial or office building. Walls and staircase in black soot

    Restoring Delray Beach Businesses After Commercial Fire Damage

    For Delray Beach business owners, say the disaster and a hurricane comes to mind. Much of the interior damage commercial properties suffer though is due to a fire from faulty wiring or an inattentive employee. Even lightning strikes still occasionally start fires in our area.

    When these actions cause commercial fire damage in Delray Beach, owners need a professional service to help rebuild and then reopen their doors as quickly as possible. As a licensed contractor, Titan Restoration Construction can rebuild any area business, regardless if it is the corner market or a warehouse operation that houses and ships products across the Southeast.

    We do not remove debris or clean property, but our teams can begin work immediately after the facility is cleared out. For markets or warehouses, one of our first acts is to replace damaged walls from the fire.

    construction specialist building a brick wall after fire damageOur teams start with the exterior walls to protect the facility from the weather and other types of secondary damage. The masons and bricklayers on our staff can repair holes created by the fire or knocked in by firefighters trying to put it out, regardless of the level of damage. With more than a decade of working with area suppliers, Titan Restoration Construction can source any brick or concrete block to match the unaffected parts of the walls and provide a seamless look to the facility.

    Now, we rebuild the interior. Putting up wall framing is not a difficult task, and some business owners use the opportunity to change the size or location of offices and other work areas. Since we have licensed plumbers and electricians on staff as well, redesigning the floor plan is not a problem for us as long as it does not affect the structural integrity of the building.

    At Titan Restoration Construction, we understand that every day closed can mean a major loss of income. Our goal is to help every owner get back to work to support their customers and employees with the same service as before the fire. Call us at 561-345-3751 today to learn more about what we can do for you.

    Click here for more information about the city of Delray Beach.

    small electrical fire due to short circuit

    Fire Damage Repair for Jupiter Homes

    Most Jupiter homes that need fire damage repair have to bring in a professional restoration company. Even a small fire can run into thousands of dollars in repair and replacement costs when it comes to just the structure of the home.

    Titan Restoration Construction has served Jupiter homeowners with fire damage repair for more than 10 years. When the worst happens to an area home, we come in and rebuild everything to return it to the original condition or change it to meet the owner’s request as long as it does not compromise the structural integrity or violate Florida building codes.

    Getting past the ‘red tape’ of state requirements is one of the things we do to help homeowners. Without a professional, general contractor, even the smartest homeowner can get caught between offices or find themselves without a building permit and no way to finish reconstruction.

    Some crews do not clean up soot residues, or haul out trash; they concentrate on putting homes back together. With permit in hand, Our experienced Titan team can restore or construct everything from new interior wall framing to brickwork to putting on a new roof.

    We can also complete the interior work as well. Our crews can replace wall insulation, then hang new drywall panels to close it all up. Technicians can also replace the floor of the attic and then lay in new insulation. Then they separate the new attic by replacing the ceiling frame and installing new tiles or panels.

    construction specialist applying new paintWith the major work completed, our crews finish the home with new paint and plumbing. Each crew has experienced painters and can apply any color the homeowner requests. The only restrictions usually are the HOA requirements for the exterior. We also have licensed and bonded plumbers to replace damaged water lines, sinks, and toilets to complete returning the structure into a home again.

    In addition to fire damage repair, Titan Restoration Construction can also help homeowners navigate with their insurance companies. We have extensive experience with all major carriers in the state of Florida and can accomplish our work with the requirements of each policy. If you need us to repair fire or water damage to commercial or residential buildings in Jupiter, call our office today at 561-345-3751 to get started.

    Click here for more information on  Jupiter.

    Fire fighters trying to control fire boca raton home

    Choose Titan Restoration for Repairs and Remodeling to Your Fire Damaged Boca Raton Home

    When a fire affects your Boca Raton home, you might not always know what the next steps to choose are. While most assuredly reach out to their insurance companies to bring in the appropriate restoration team to take care of the pressing concerns, there are often repairs and reconstruction efforts that have to get accomplished before a homeowner can move on from this traumatic occurrence. Fortunately, Titan Restoration Construction is here to help.

    From the moment that our team arrives at your fire damaged Boca Raton residence, we get to work in inspecting the damage and assessing the work that needs to be completed. We keep an open line of communication with you the homeowner to address the most pressing of concerns that threaten your ability to remain in your home after the fire.

    Fire damaged furniture in house boca ratonOften fires leave materials and structural components within your home severely damaged. To bring your home back to its original conditions, these materials have to be removed and ultimately replaced. This process begins with controlled demolition in the affected areas where the damage was too severe to get salvaged or restored. This concentrated effort ensures that only the affected areas get removed, which makes replacement more efficient and helps to keep claims and out of pocket expenses to a minimum.

    Replacement and reconstruction are at the heart of what our local Titan Restoration Construction team does. Once the demolition gets completed, we prepare the area for the reconstruction or repairs, which involve cleaning up the area thoroughly, preparing edges for a seamless finish, or preparing materials for more efficient and natural repair.

    While no homeowner wants to have to contend with fire damages and their often severe effects to the structural integrity of their homes, you always have the professionals at Titan Restoration to help make the process go more smoothly. Our experienced Fire Damage team members have helped residents and business owners in Boca Raton, Deerfield Beach and your neighborhood. Give us a call at 561-345-3751 for fast and professional service.

    Click here for more information on the city of Boca Raton.