CLEANING SMOKE DAMAGE OUT OF YOUR KITCHEN
The damages that fire can cause are, of course, significant and devastating. Smoke is a big issue as well, and very hard to get rid of. In the event of an oven or stove fire in your kitchen, you can be left with a mess that requires the help of professionals who know how to deal with the residue left behind, and that smell. It’s not as easy as just opening a window and letting it all air out, unfortunately.
The acidity of smoke and soot can make them difficult to remove, and they contain particles that are harmful to breathe, so it is going to be essential to clean the smoke damage completely out of your kitchen as soon as possible.
There are a few things a homeowner can do themselves to alleviate smoke damage using items found in most homes, such as rubbing alcohol, vinegar, degreaser, and hot water. You will need one item that isn’t normally in your closet, and that is a dry-cleaning sponge.
Open all windows, even if it’s cold outside - ventilation is essential. Use fans, if necessary, to get air moving, and turn off your HVAC system to prevent the spread of the smoke and soot and their harmful particles.
Make sure you wear protection for yourself, such as long pants and long sleeves. Gloves and eye protection are important, as well, since you will be freeing soot as you clean. Lay down floor protection and remove furniture that is not damaged. You may be able to cover items with plastic if the area affected is small, but if it’s the whole kitchen it will be wise to simply remove everything and seal off undamaged areas. If the damage is too severe for you to handle, be sure to contact a licensed professional.
Remove loose soot particles with your vacuum, using attachments. If you have a shop-vac, that is best.
Next, using the dry-cleaning sponge, wipe up soot and smoke stains. These sponges have special chemicals in them to lift stains, so they are best for the job. Never use water or cleaners before you use this sponge, or soot will be spread all over and be impossible to remove. As the sponge gets discolored, you can slice the used parts off with a knife to get a fresh start, but make sure you aren’t using a dirty sponge - that will be counterproductive.
At this point, you can use a clean rag and any cleaning agents you have on hand. Soak your rag in the preferred cleaner and wipe all the walls throughout your kitchen, whether you see soot or smoke damage or not. Wipe down light bulbs, too. After this, soapy water should be used to wipe down everything. Refresh your water throughout the process. Once you’ve finished, you will want to wash everything down with clean water, just to be sure.
After your kitchen is clean, you will want to dry all the surfaces, and run fans, too.
This is such a huge job that you may find it necessary to call a professional for help. Here at SERVPRO of Belle Meade/West Nashville we have the expertise necessary to help you recover your kitchen from smoke damages.