Fires and water damage are two worst things you can encounter in your home. While both events are rare, they do happen. This guide will help you understand what to do when there is a fire or water damage at your home.
Assess the damage.
- Check for electrical hazards. Turn off electrical outlets and light switches at the circuit breaker or fuse box.
- Check for gas leaks. If you smell natural gas escaping from vents in areas where appliances were used recently, like around sinks and dishwashers, call an expert right away!
- Check for smoke damage inside your home: If there’s been any fire or explosion nearby (even if it didn’t cause any visible damage), check over every room in case some residual flames remain hidden behind walls or ceilings.
- Assess structural integrity: Damage caused by fire can include broken windows due to flying glass shards hitting walls during escapes and bent door frames due to wind pressure.
Clean and dry the area.
- Use a wet/dry vacuum to remove any remaining debris and wipe down the walls with an all-purpose cleaner.
- Using a mop, soak up excess water as it dries in your home, then allow this area to dry completely before replacing anything.
- Use fans if you have them available to speed up drying time by circulating hot air throughout your house; otherwise, leave windows open overnight if possible until there are no signs of smoke or flames (which should be within 24 hours).
Take stock of what was damaged.
The most important thing to do is look at the drywall and flooring in your home. If there is any smoke damage, look at how far the smoke traveled through your home. If there is water damage, check if there are any standing water spots on the floor or walls, as these could indicate where flooding occurred.
Repair what you can.
If there are areas where water or smoke has entered your homes, such as through gaps around windows and doors, then repairing them is an immediate priority for safety reasons. You can also patch up holes in walls where pipes have burst or caused leaks. You may need to drill holes into walls and ceilings so that pipes can be adequately fixed or replaced. Remember:
- If you can’t repair it, replace it.
- If you can’t replace it, don’t use it.
- If you can’t use it and don’t throw it out, keep it in a safe place.
Talk to your insurance as soon as possible.
If you have home insurance, it’s a good idea to talk to your agent as soon as possible. Insurers are there to help you with all of the claims that can occur after a fire or water damage incident, including:
- Damage from smoke and soot
- Mold remediation (if applicable)
- Property restoration (if applicable)
Make sure you have all the information necessary to discuss coverage with your insurer when they contact you about the claim. You may need to provide them with some additional information, such as:
- The date and time that the fire or water damage occurred.
- Photos of any damage done to property and/or belongings.
You should also look into whether you can file a claim with your homeowner’s insurance policy. If they don’t cover it, it’s still possible to file a claim with your own insurance company.
Hire only professionals.
When you have a fire or water damage at home, it’s essential to hire professionals to help with the clean-up. Experts in fire and water damage in Paola, KS, Emergency Mitigation Services is a phone call away. There are many reasons why this is the case, but here are some of them:
- Professional cleaners know how to deal with all types of hazardous materials. They will be able to use proper safety equipment and protective gear so that nothing gets damaged during their work.
- Professionals ensure that no health hazards are present while cleaning up your home.
Remain calm and act quickly and rationally.
In the event of fire or water, the one rule to remember is that time is of the essence. Avoiding potential disasters and preventing further water damage will be easier if you remain calm and act quickly and rationally. Discussing your options with a trustworthy clean-up company will also help to ensure you get the best possible outcome in the case of any disaster.