Fire is one the worst things that can happen to a building’s integrity. While flames structurally damage and destroy homes and businesses, the soot left behind can be just as terrible. Our fire damage restoration technicians at ServiceMaster DSI provide initial restoration along with important soot removal services.
After the heavy damage from the flames is restored, if soot removal isn’t addressed, you could have a real problem on your hands. Soot may often seem inconspicuous, especially in thin,barely visible layers, but in reality it’s incredibly corrosive for almost all materials.
Fabrics will be among the first victims of soot corrosion. Because fabric is a gentle, soft fiber, the acidic molecules of soot can penetrate deeply into and around the strands, destroying them from all directions. Soot will leave stains, holes, and acrid smells in upholstery, carpets, drapery, and clothing.
Plastics are also quickly damaged by soot. Because plastic is so soft, it is easily susceptible to acids. If you’ve ever kept tomato sauce in a plastic container for a week, you can see that even the small amount of acid from the tomatoes etches the plastic a little. This is nothing compared to the acid of soot, which will quickly turn most plastics yellow, warp them, and render them brittle. Vinyl floors are plastic composites, and if left exposed to soot damage, it will have to be completely replaced.
Wood is slightly more impervious to soot, but if soot removal isn’t addressed, the corrosive material will strip the finish off of wood floors and furniture. After the protective finish is gone, the soot will permanently stain even the darkest woods.
Metals, china, and glass are all the last materials to be damaged by soot, but if they are exposed for long enough, the damage will be insidious and permanent. If soot removal services aren’t utilized within a few weeks of the fire, soot will permanently etch metals, china, and glass. It will tarnish silver, destroying jewelry and silverware. Windows will most likely all need replacing, and pale china objects will be permanently stained.
Though it may seem invisible or harmless, soot is unbelievably destructive, especially if left for too long. Call ServiceMaster DSI for comprehensive fire damage restoration in the Kansas City metro area.