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Can You Clean Smoke Damage or Should You Hire a Professional

Smoke damage refers to the smoke residues that adhere to the furniture after the fire is put out. It is best not to clean up the smoke damage yourself because you may not know the proper procedure and you don’t have the right equipment to do so. Attempting to clean up the smoke damage yourself can result in a greater extent of contamination and damages on your furniture.

The ash from the smoke is able to discolor all kinds of surfaces including wood, glass, plastic and metal. The soot can cause wooden surfaces to become black and surfaces of plastic and fiberglass to turn into yellowish color. Metal surfaces can tarnish and become corroded at a fast rate when exposed to the ash residues. The discoloration of the furniture’s surface is not the only harm the fire has done. The particles from the smoke residues contain carcinogen that can deteriorate the lung health when you breathe them in.

You can get sick if you try to clean up the smoke damage yourself. Hiring a professional smoke restoration contractor prevents you from suffering any health problem while you are attempting to restore your home. The fire restoration company is equipped with a team of expert professionals that have been trained to undertake all sizes of smoke damage restoration projects.

If you hire a fire restoration contractor, they will first send an inspector to inspect the extent of the smoke damage.
They will identify the furniture that can be salvaged and the furniture that is destroyed by the fire to the extent that it needs to be thrown away. During fire, the black smoke will adhere onto the surface of your furniture. The fire restoration worker will use industrial grade cleaning supplies to remove the ash residues that have built up on the surface. They will also identify the source of the smoke odor and use a specialized odor remover to remove the odor.

The fire restoration worker will seal off the furniture to prevent the odor from continuing to fill the atmosphere. It is important to call the fire restoration contractor as soon as the fire has been put out so that the building can quickly be restored to a functional state. If you delay, the ash residues will have permanently discolored your furniture so that you need to spend more money to replace them.

The high acidity of ash means that it will be harder to clean up if you procrastinate and delay in seeking help from a smoke damage restoration company. When choosing a smoke damage restoration company, you must make sure it is certified and holds the appropriate licensing. The company should be certified by a respectable organization such as Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certificate (IICRC

Certified Fire and Smoke Contractors to Consider:

New York Cleanup Pros
301 Terry Rd
Smithtown, New York 11787
Tel: 631-449-7240

Interstate Restoration
3401 Quorum Drive, Suite 300
Ft. Worth, TX 76137
Office: 800–622–6433

DKI Services
25 Northwest Point Blvd. Suite 1000
Elk Grove Village, IL 60007
Phone: (630) 350-3000

Is Black Mold Hazardous in Your Attic

Black mold, also known by its scientific name, Stachybotrys chartarum, is a toxic mold that is greenish black. It is slimy and gelatinous because of the wet layer in the mold. It needs water source to survive and will turn powdery if the water source is dry up. Some molds look like Stachybotrys chartarum. You can ask a mold expert if you are not sure whether the mold you see in your attic is the toxic black mold.

Black mold is hazardous for your health because it can release a poisonous musty smell like that of a mildew. The toxins that are released by this type of mold is called mycotoxins. The mycotoxins can cause those who inhale the toxic smell to experience symptoms such as vomiting, diarrhea, headache, fatigue, sneezing, coughing, and hard to breathe. The symptoms can be even more aggravating for children and older people.

Cleaning Up Toxic Mold In Your Home Or Business Tips

The symptoms will also be more serious for people that suffer from asthma, allergy, and weak immune system. The amount of impact the mold has on your health will depend on the level of exposure to the mold. If you notice there are black mold growth in your attic, you must quickly have them removed. If you ignore it, it will spread to even wider area on your attic. Mold can spread very fast and it only take them 2 – 3 days to spread to other areas of your home.

Long term inhaling of the toxic smell from the black mold can cause permanent damage to the internal organ of your health and it can even lead to dead in serious cases. Black mold can grow in your attic if there are enough moisture and nutrients. If you notice black mold in the attic, it is possible that there are leaks in the roof or there are water somewhere in the attic that causes water condensation. The nutrients can be derived from the dust and dirt.

It is very dangerous to attempt to remove the black mold yourself especially if it covers a large area in the attic. It is safe to remove the black mold on your own if it covers an area that is less than 10 square feet. If it spread over more than 10 square feet, you should get a professional mold removal and remediation services to do the job. Getting rid of the mold yourself can be dangerous if you are inexperienced at handling it. There will be a large amount of spores flying in the atmosphere as you attempt to remove it. These spores can enter into your body and worsen the symptoms that you are already experiencing. The professional is well trained and has the right tools to detect and remove the mold.

Proper Remediation Protocol for Mold Removal is Essential

Anyone who suspects that they have a mold problem inside their home should contact a mold remediation and removal company as soon as possible. Fast action is required whenever mold is suspected and especially if the home has recently had a flooding problem or some type of water loss. It is never advisable to tackle a mold problem on your own as mold can pose very serious health risks. It can be very difficult for the average homeowner to find mold inside their home that may be hidden from view. While you could clean up a small, isolated area of mold yourself, a large area of mold or several areas inside your home with visible mold spores should be handled by a professional mold remediation company.

While it is common to smell the musty odor of mold, it can be problematic to find the source of the mold. This is because mold often grows in inaccessible areas inside the home such as behind walls & baseboards, in crawlspaces and attics and above suspended ceilings. Sometimes, the only way homeowners realize they have a mold problem is because they’re having breathing difficulties while inside the home but the respiratory problem seems to clear up when they leave and worsen again upon returning to the home.

When you hire a professional mold remediation company, a certified mold expert will arrive at your home to access the problem. Testing of the premises will be done to determine what type of mold is present and to create a plan of action. This air and surface testing for mold is done so the experts can develop an effective mold eradication plan. The end goal is to properly identify the mold, find where it’s growing and then to eradicate it in a safe and effective manner. Surfaces inside the home which had mold on them will be cleaned (or removed and disposed of) to ensure that no mold spores are left behind.

Not only is mold testing an essential part of the mold remediation protocol, but it is also necessary after the mold cleanup is complete. Most mold experts suggest that the home be tested following the eradication process to ensure that the mold was effectively cleaned and removed. The post-process mold testing usually consists of testing the air for microscopic mold spores to find out if any mold spores are still present in the air.

How Do a Mold Experts Test for Mold?

Signs that indicate that mold may be present inside a structure may include seeing mold growing on surfaces, smelling a strong musty odor, excessive humidity and evidence of past moisture problems that could have caused undetected mold to grow. If you suspect that you have a mold problem, it’s highly advisable to contact a mold removal company asap because some types of molds are very toxic and pose a great health risk to people inside the building.

In some water damage situations, the experts at a mold removal company can safely restore your home or business by identifying and removing the mold. In other situations, an indoor air quality professional may be needed to come and perform an air quality test to determine the mold concentration. By inspecting and testing the structure for mold, the indoor air quality professional will come up with a remediation protocol for the mold removal company to follow which guides them through the process of safely and effectively removing the mold-damaged materials to ensure that all the mold is eradicated from the premises.

An indoor air quality expert will examine the levels of mold contamination on porous, semi-porous and non-porous materials. These experts use a variety of tools to carry out mold testing and all testing procedures used strictly adhere to testing protocols set forth by the Environmental Protection Agency or EPA. The structure may be inspected visually, it may be swabbed in certain areas and air samples may be taken in the attic or between the walls. Often air sample testing is done throughout the premises if a widespread mold problem is suspected so that it can determined if elevated levels of mold spores are present.

Once the structure has been assessed and tested by the indoor air quality professional, a mold remediation company is given a full mold report by the expert. This report helps the mold removal professionals to develop an appropriate course of action to ensure that all the mold is located, cleaned up and removed. It is common for mold remediation companies to remove mold damaged materials from the premises such as drywall, wallpaper and curtains as often these types of porous materials become so badly damaged by mold that they’re deemed ruined.