Three Types Of Smoke Damage You May Find After A Fire

When you're assessing the damage to your home immediately after a fire, getting a quick estimate of the types of damage that will need to be fixed can be helpful when you call the damage remediation professionals immediately afterward to ask for a quote. Of course, you won't be assessing the damage officially (your insurance adjuster will have to do that), but knowing what you're dealing with can help you make a back-of-the-hand assessment of the damage. Here are three types of smoke that are commonly referred to in the damage remediation industry. Checking for the signs of these different types of smoke can help you give more information about the incident to both the damage remediation company and the insurance company.

1. Wet smoke

"Wet" and "dry" are the most common types of smoke found in house fires. "Wet" smoke occurs when the fire starts slowly, smolders a lot, and doesn't burn oxygen quickly. Often the reason it doesn't burn oxygen quickly is because it doesn't have good airflow so it can't access as much oxygen as it wants. The lack of oxygen causes incomplete combustion, which means that the soot isn't as pure and includes more of the original material (not that you can tell what the material was from looking at the soot, of course). The reason it's called "wet" is because the soot is stickier and damper and has a gummy consistency, unlike the soot from a hot, fast-burning fire.

2. Dry smoke

In contrast to wet smoke, dry smoke leaves a crumbly type of soot that's more similar to ash. This smoke comes from a robust fire, usually one that starts suddenly and catches dry, flammable materials. Good airflow is also required. This type of fire may consume more of your belongings quickly before it's put out, but the good news is that it will be an easier cleaning job. You shouldn't try to remove the soot on your own, but its consistency and lower levels of smell mean that the cleaning and restoration crew will have a quicker job and be able to return your home to you sooner.

3. Kitchen or protein smoke

"Protein" smoke often originates in the kitchen. It's a type of smoke that occurs when something with high protein levels catches on fire, so food is generally the culprit. Although you may not see visible smoke damage from this type of fire, don't overlook its more insidious threat. The smell and the chemicals can seep into your walls and it can be difficult or impossible to eradicate the odor without professional assistance.

This information about the main types of smoke damage you're likely to find will help you more accurately describe your situation to the remediation experts. Remember to inform your insurance company that the fire has occurred and ask which remediation experts they recommend (or require) you to use. To find out more, speak with someone like smoke damage by Rocky Cross Construction (North) Ltd.