Deciding what you should throw away after a fire is a daunting task. Not only do you have to deal with finding a temporary place to stay, filing a fire damage insurance claim, and all the frustrating odds and ends relating to a house or business fire; but you also have to sort through your personal belongings to find out what is salvageable and what needs to be tossed. Here’s a guide on what you can save and what you should throw away after a fire.
What You Can Save After A Fire
Believe it or not, real hardwood floors are safe to save after a fire. We can help you clean and restore them back to how they looked before the fire (or better)!
Metal & Glass
The melting point of most metals and glass is usually higher than the fire that might have touched it. So, you should be good to save a majority of these items in your home or business property if they have been touched by fire. Be sure to inspect them for soot before moving them into your new property or back into your old one after it has been professionally cleaned and restored.
Anything Saved in A Fireproof Safe
If you were prepared for the worst, you would’ve purchased a fireproof (and waterproof) safe and stored all of your important documents, family photos, and cash inside!
What You Should Throw Away After A Fire
Unfortunately, not everything can be saved. Some items can be damaged beyond repair due to the heat and intensity of a fire. Did you know that it only takes 30 seconds for a small flame to turn into a full-blown life-threatening fire? After that, fires can destroy almost anything in its path. If any of the items below are in the path of a fire, they unfortunately must be thrown away.
Food – Perishable & Non-Perishable
Sometimes, getting some char on your food is not a good thing. Anything the fire touches must be thrown away. Be sure to inspect food you suspect has been touched by smoke or soot, too, because they should also be thrown away.
If the fire didn’t get into your refrigerator, you may be able to salvage the food that is in there. But note, fires cause power outages and you might only have a few hours to save the food that is in there before it got bad.
You may think that food that has been stored in cans or jars is safe to consume after a fire, but the high heat from a fire can cause the can or jar to heat up and spoil your food.
Medicine & Cosmetics
Although you may not think about this, any medicines or cosmetics that were at the property should be thrown away, even if there is no sign of fire, smoke, or water damage. Not only can a fire’s heat and smoke alter the composition of the chemicals within medicines and cosmetics, but if you use a product or consume medication that looks visibly fine but actually isn’t, you could damage your skin, hair, or suffer medical issues.
Burned Clothing, Fabrics, & Bedding
Fabrics of all kinds are extremely flammable. If your house fire touched any rooms with clothing, bedding, or other fabrics, you most likely won’t be able to salvage them. Especially if they look like this:
Sometimes, a fire will miss these items if it is put out quickly. In this case, you can save your clothes, fabrics, and bedding, but only if you properly clean them from the inevitable smoke damage.
We would be more than happy to help you with that! We partner with CRDN, a company that specializes in cleaning the contents of your home after any kind of property damage disaster.
We all know that burning plastic is a terrible smell but also a very easy thing to catch fire and melt away. Plastic has a tendency to absorb smoke and soot from fires and should be tossed, even if they visibly look untouched.
Fire & Smoke Damage Restoration
If you have had any fire damage or smoke damage to your residential or commercial property in Rhode Island, we’ve got you covered! Rhode Island Restoration is RI’s top restoration company. We have a team of professionals who are experienced and thoroughly trained to clean any size or amount of fire or smoke damage at your property.
We offer free quotes and 24/7 emergency services for your property damage restoration needs!
The experts at Rhode Island Restoration have all the information you need about fire and smoke damage.