Putting out your fire until help arrives
If your Charlotte home is impacted by a fire, smoke, or soot here are some tips and do's and don'ts until help arrives...
The first 48 hours after a fire damage can make the difference between restoring versus replacing your property and personal belongings.
What you can do until help arrives
- Limit movement in the home to prevent soot particles from spreading and additional damage form occurring.
- Place clean towels or old linens on rugs and high traffic areas and upholstery.
- Coat chrome faucets, trim and appliances with petroleum jelly or oil.
- Place aluminum foil or wood blocks between furniture legs and wet carpet.
- Do not wash any walls or painted surfaces.
- Do not shampoo carpet or upholstery.
- Do not clean any electrical equipment.
- Do not send clothing to a dry cleaner since improper cleaning may set smoke odor.
- Keep hands clean. Soot on hands can further soil upholstery, walls, and woodwork.
- If electricity is off, empty freezer and refrigerator completely and prop doors open to help prevent odor.
- If heat is off during winter, pour RV antifreeze in sinks, toilet bowls, holding tanks and tubs to avoid freezing pipes and fixtures.
- Wash both sides of leaves on house plants.
- Change HVAC filter, but leave system off until a trained professional can check the system.
- Tape double layers of cheesecloth over air registers to stop particles of soot from getting in or out of the HVAC system.
- Consume any food or beverages that may have been stored close to fire, heat or water. (They may be contaminated.)
- Turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet. Wiring may be wet or damaged and cause electrical shock, and air movement may create secondary damage.