Sunday, 12 Sep 2021

How to Repair Smoke Damage in Your Kitchen

Smoke damage can be very difficult to clean up.  Smoke has the ability to embed itself into just about anything in your home, leaving a nasty (and lasting) odor throughout your home.  If you’ve ever been inside a home after a fire, even a minor one, you know what I mean.

We had a fire in our kitchen last year and hired a kitchen remodeling company in Mountain View to replace and renovatie our damaged kitchen. They were the highest rated contractor in Google so we felt confident they would do a good job.  One of the issues we needed to deal with was removing the smoke odor from the home, which was a bigger challenge than anticipated.

Smoke is actually hot air polluted with contaminants like oil and ash. These settle on ceilings, walls and horizontal surfaces creating a smelly, dirty mess. If the problem is widespread you may like to consider calling for assistance from a smoke remediation specialist, an HVAC duct cleaning company and a general cleaning firm. If the damage is minor and you have the time and patience then these tips should help you to get started.

Tip 1 – Open all the doors and windows. Read to the bottom of the page to figure out what you’re going to need. While you’re at the hardware store purchasing your requirements remember to include a generous supply of protective gloves and two pairs of masks and goggles.

Tip 2 – Rent yourself a couple of industrial fans. Position them in the middle of the room and run them for 24 hours to clear any residual smoke. While you’re waiting, adjust your masks and goggles to ensure a tight fit and get used to wearing them.

Tip 3 – Vacuum up the soot and dirt. Take your time and remove as much as possible as this will simplify cleaning surfaces later. Always work from below the dirt or from the nearside of it to avoid drawing it towards you. If it’s still wet, try to avoid spreading stains.

Tip 4 – Wash your mask and goggles, rinse them thoroughly and hang them out to dry. Put the other set on plus a fresh set of gloves. Remove anything that’s damaged beyond repair and store it somewhere that simplifies taking it to the tip.

Tip 5 – Wipe all the surfaces with a damp cloth remembering to rinse it frequently and change the water regularly. Take your time again. Your mission is to remove the residue, not spread it around.

Tip 6 – Add a tablespoon of tri-sodium phosphate to a bucket of warm water and repeat the exercise. A vinegar spray can help with stubborn stains but be careful of over-wetting chip or drywall as this can soak in and encourage mold. You are now in a position to start repairing the damage and recovering your home.

Tip 7 – Ask your insurance company for consent to replace any carpets, curtains and soft furnishings. Trust me, you will not get them properly clean and they will stink forever. Strip off any wallpaper as the same applies.

Tip 8 – Prime walls with oil-based stain blocking primer. Repeat until all stains have disappeared. Add a final coat to make doubly sure. After that you can safely over paint with the medium of your choice.

Tip 9 – Install replacement fittings and carpets. Hang new curtains and position new furniture. The job’s done. You got your house back and you did it all yourself!

This sounds like a lot of hard work and it surely is. Like I said earlier, there are smoke remediation specialists, HVAC duct cleaning companies, and general cleaning firms all over town. If you have fire damage insurance, you can opt to have a professional service come in and restore your home and it’s contents, or just start over again.