How Soon Can I Move Back into My House after Clean Up from Fire Damage?

Learn what happens during and after clean up from fire damage.

Clean Up from Fire DamageAre you facing cleanup from fire damage? A fire in your home is practically unthinkable, but if it happens, it's certain your life will be changed forever. Fire is devastating and heartbreaking, terrifying and dangerous, emotional and life-altering. No matter how large or how small the fire, it can cause severe damage, and it needs professional attention. And then there's the question everyone wants to know: how soon can you move back into your house?

From the fire to the restoration, here's everything you need to know about fire damage clean up:

What Will You Find after the Fire?

Fire can move at different speeds and leave behind different types damages depending on the fuel burned. Imagine a forest fire. When there's been a drought and the trees and the grasses are dry, the fire can sweep through at enormous speed and leave behind nothing but ash and soot.

The same applies to a house. If it's made up of mostly synthetic materials like those found in carpeting and many upholstery fabrics, the fire will move much more quickly than if there are a lot of organic materials such as solid wood and cotton or wool. And the debris left behind will be different as well.

When you see your home after a fire, you might be surprised to find more damage from the water used by the firefighters than damage from the fire. Although, depending on the size of the fire, you could see devastating damage from the flames, heat, and smoke in addition to the water. What wasn't destroyed by flames is most likely destroyed or damaged by the smoke, soot, and water.

What Does Fire Damage Clean Up Look Like?

Clean Up from Fire DamageAfter you've called 911, and you and your family and your pets are safe, and you have called your insurance company, the next call will be to a fire restoration company. Immediate response is critical so that the restoration process can begin as quickly as possible. The longer the water, soot, and smoke residue sit the more damage they can do. As soon as the fire department gives the all clear and it's safe to enter the building, the clean-up process can begin.

The first step is water extraction. Getting the water out and drying out your home is important to gain access to the rest of your home and to continue an active clean-up operation. Once the home is dry, the cleaning can begin. This includes walls, ceilings, flooring, appliances, upholstery, furniture, light fixtures, windows, and all of your belongings. Anything that was touched by the fire or smoke will need to be cleaned and restored.

Determining what is salvageable is part of the process. Any belongings that are too damaged for repair will be discarded. Other items that don't have damage can either be left in the home or will be packed and stored by your restoration company until after the house is repaired. Anything with repairable damage will be repaired and restored to its previous condition. This includes everything from furniture to documents and appliances to electronics.

In addition to the cleaning, critical steps like smoke odor cleaning, air purification, ozone treatment, structural stabilization, and demolition, if necessary, will be done. Until this happens, it's not only unsafe to return to your home; it will be largely unlivable due to the dangers from the soot and residue and the unbearable smoke odor left behind.

When Can I Return Home after a Fire?

Once the clean-up and restoration are complete, your home will be inspected to ensure it's safe and structurally sound and that all of the repairs are up to code. At this point, you will be given the go-ahead to return to your home and life as you know it.

If you're facing the aftermath of a fire, you don't have to go it alone. Contact our expert team at Can-Restore for help with clean up from fire damage by calling (770) 735-2695.