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Restoration Methods for Fire Damage “Man is the only creature that dares to light a fire and live with it. The reason? Because he alone has learned to put it out.” Henry Jackson Vandyke, Jr. (18521933), American author and clergyman. Fire played a critical role in Man's evolution from cave dweller to creator of modern civilization. While it is the best of friends if kept under control, careless handling or unforeseen accidents can make fire the worst of enemies. No one knows better than the householder. While fireplaces may have become an oldworld oddity, the proliferation of electrical equipment has made the threat of fire damage very real in modern times. Anything from a malfunctioning microwave to a faulty toaster can give rise to fire that can result in significant material damage to a house, besides the obvious threat to life and safety of the inhabitants. While it is always advisable to have smoke detectors to alarm the house dwellers of any fire, here are some restoration methods for fire damage to your home. These tips cover the actions you should take after the fire has been extinguished and you have been given permission by the appropriate authorities to enter the building. The last point is extremely important: remember, valuables have no value when compared to your physical safety and that of your family.
1. Make the proper insurance claim. This is obviously applicable if you are covered by insurance. In order to make a proper claim, it is important to collect the appropriate evidence in terms of photographs and original receipts of purchase to submit to the insurer. Also, ensure that you have verifications from the Police and Fire Department. 2. Remove anything that has been charred. However, remove flooring only after the removal of damaged ceiling since it will collect the debris. Realize that in addition to the smoke and debris due to fire, the water and chemicals used to extinguish fire also leave behind harmful debris. Hence, they need to be cleared as well. 3. Remove all valuables and detachable furnishings for cleaning. 4. Ensure that the HVAC (Heating Ventilation and Air Conditioning) system is thoroughly cleaned to remove soot and smoke residue. If this is not done, these harmful substances may be reintroduced into the living area at time of operation. The electrical wiring throughout the house also needs to be checked out thoroughly. 5. Seal framing materials with an appropriate sealer, before replacing drywall, paneling, decking, etc. If this is not done, odor will leach out of structural materials for months, if even years. Simply putting up new drywall and taping and mudding joints will not seal in untreated odor. After this, deodorization has to be done with the proper chemicals. In spite of the above tips, it's always better to call a professional service to do the restoration. When dealing with fire damage, there is risk to the health of the concerned individual, something that can be handled only by those trained to do so. Hence, let the professionals handle the major issues while you can deal with minor damages.
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Restoration Methods for Water Damage Water is ubiquitous, and that's not only because it covers threefourths of the earth's area. Even on land, water is everywhere because we need it for so many things. Hence, it is not unexpected that sometimes things can go a bit out of control, resulting in water damage to our houses. Water can be extremely destructive even if not present in force, and has been known to cause structural and integral damage to a home and its
components like wood, metal, cardboard and organic fibers. If these are not attended to, they will rot, deteriorate and eventually be irreparably damaged. Whether due to a natural disaster like a flood or a manmade one like punctured pipes, water damage is a reality that threatens every householder. Hence, besides being prepared by way of insurance, one needs to know about the restoration methods for water damage. Water damage restoration is defined as “the process of restoring a property back to preloss condition after sustaining any level of water damage.” In case you didn't know it, there are two large certifying bodies, the IICRC and the RIA, that recommend standards of restoration for water damage. Most professional restoration companies follow the IICRC S500 which provides a specific set of practical standards for the different restoration procedures. According to the S500, there are three categories of water that can cause water damage, broadly differentiated on the basis of the level of contamination present. Also, water damage itself is classified into four categories depending on moisture evaporation rate. Although every situation calls for a different approach, there are certain commonalities between them. Some of the methods used in the restoration procedure are: 1. Extracting as much water as possible. A wellextracted floor and walls will hasten the drying process. This is done by using wetdry vacuum units or by gas powered submersible pumps. The extracted water is properly disposed of through a sink or other drainage vent. 2. Use of psychometric tools. Tools like hygrometers are used to measure the moisture content of the different building materials (flooring, drywall and wallboard) and to measure the daily progress the drying process is making. 3. The use of air movers. Air moving across a materials surface will cause that material to dry. This is part of the secondary drying process that is done after the initial water extraction. Besides fans, dehumidifiers that remove humidity from affected units are also used. 4. Mold removal. Mold, if not eradicated immediately, can spread and become difficult to remove. This, in turn, can cause a whole host of health hazards, from mild allergic reactions to lung disease and even death. 5. Document restoration. In spite of the spread of electronic media, many people keep several documents in their original paper form; consequently, they are susceptible to water damage. Nowadays, it is possible to restore damaged documents with specialized equipment.
There are specialized and accredited water damage restoration companies in every state. While some rudimentary restoration can be done by the householder, extensive damage calls for the services of professional. For more information Click Here