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How Smoke Damage Affects a Commercial Building

Published by Allegra on August 31, 2021 in category: Uncategorized

Smoke Damage Affects a Commercial BuildingFire damage is devastating because of the extent of destruction it can cause, even in limited time durations. It is hazardous because it doesn’t always need the fire to reach every location for the damage to happen.

Smoke damage is a common feature of fire damage and can cause endless hassle if you forget to take that into account during commercial restoration. This article will help you know how smoke damage affects a commercial building, so you know about the extent of repair you will need.

What Smoke Typically Carries Along

To understand why smoke from a fire causes damage to properties, you need to know about the elements it carries with it. Three main aspects of fire-related smoke are responsible for smoke damage.

1.    Soot

Soot is the black powdery residue typically found in areas with fire damage. Soot is dangerous because it is toxic and can easily be inhaled or wedged inside with barely noticeable crevices. Upon inhalation, they can cause breathing issues like asthma or bronchitis.

They can also be ingested through skin and eyes, resulting in coronary heart diseases and, in the worst cases, cancer.

2.    Carbon Monoxide

Carbon monoxide is a dangerous and toxic gas that causes the following problems when inhaled:

  • Vomiting
  • Abdominal Pain
  • Chest Pain
  • Loss of Balance
  • Headaches

It is a severe health hazard, and inhaling higher concentrations can result in complete loss of muscular control and death. These features are what make fire damages more lethal.

Several fire-related deaths happen because people accidentally inhale the gas, and their loss of balance prevents them from escaping the burning building on time.

3.    Carbon Dioxide

Carbon dioxide causes suffocation, dizziness, and restlessness. Higher concentrations can also affect heart rate and blood pressure that can be fatal. In addition to the adverse impact on health, carbon dioxide is also responsible for the corrosion of steel used in building construction.

How Does Smoke Damage Affect a Commercial Building

Now that you know the main components of fire-related smoke, let’s explore how smoke damage affects commercial buildings.

1.    Lingering Smell

Soot can make its way into minor cracks, ridges, and crevices inside the building and stay there if not cleaned out as it gets carried along with carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide. Its presence leaves a lingering burning smell in the building and will stay there until the soot is removed.

2.    Damage to Building Structure

Soot and carbon dioxide are dangerous for building structures because they erode the building material, weakening the overall system. The longer they remain trapped within the building, the worse the damage will be.

3.    Damage to Items

Soot is sticky, and when smoke spreads inside the building, it leaves soot sticking to several items inside the spaces that have escaped the flames. While these items will not have burn marks, soot contamination can also render them too damaged and dangerous to be kept around.

Therefore, smoke damage substantially increases the overall cost of fire damage to commercial buildings or other properties.

4.    Invisible Impact on Wooden Furniture

Wood is porous and can easily absorb high concentrations of smoke within its surface. This ability makes wooden furniture vulnerable to smoke damage because soot can lodge itself inside the pores and damage it from within.

It will also permeate the burning smell until it is removed if the damage isn’t bad enough to make the furniture unusable.

5.    Damage to Hardwood Floors

Hardwood floors are porous, and they become easily damaged due to smoke absorption. If your commercial building has hardwood floors that escaped fire damage, there is a high chance that you will still need to get them changed because they cannot be cleaned thoroughly.

The smoke damage, therefore, might be extremely costly depending on the area the flooring covers.

Is Smoke Damage Covered in Insurance?

We wanted to address smoke damage separately because it is not always covered in commercial insurance packages offered by insurance companies. Therefore, it puts a considerable dent into the bank account of the person or organization covering the cost of the fire damage.

You can, however, increase your chances of getting coverage for it by taking the following actions:

Informing the Insurance Company Immediately

Insurance companies require you to notify them of an emergency within a specific timeline. Make sure you give them a call or send them an email as soon as you can.

Documenting Damage Caused Overall

When you hire 911 Restoration in East Valley for fire damage restoration, our technicians will develop detailed documentation of all the damage in the building. Please share this information with your insurance provider so they have verified evidence of the damage.

Retaining Items with Smoke Damage for Inspection

Retain all damaged items that might create a dispute to ensure your insurance provider can review them when they come to test the claim.

Choose Cleaning Instead of Replacement Where Possible

Insurance providers want to minimize the amount they will cover so long as their actions are legal. Therefore, if you can restore smoke damage through cleaning, choose that option to get as much coverage as possible.

Wrapping Up

Smoke damage can be hazardous if not dealt with properly. Therefore, 911 Restoration technicians will always ensure that we analyze all affected building parts during commercial restoration.

If you urgently need restoration services, call us at (480) 331-9998. We are available 24/7, and our team will reach you within 45 minutes of the call. You can also send your inquiries at this link, and we will respond as soon as possible.

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