You get startled while cooking and knock a pan filled with oil into your gas burner. A grease fire erupts and flames shoot up into the microwave above your stove. Smoke billows upward into your kitchen cabinets and ceiling. You frantically try to put out the fire by pounding on the flames with a kitchen towel, but the towel ignites as well. You throw the towel in the sink and try to put out the fire on the stove with a cup of water, but that’s a big mistake. You finally remember to turn off the burner and that you have a small fire extinguisher (we hope!). The fire extinguisher does the trick. But the aftermath remains – a heavy smoky odor throughout the house, black soot on your cabinet and ceiling, burnt grease everywhere and a partially melted microwave.
You COULD clean up after a small kitchen fire yourself, but it’s best to leave the inspection and cleanup of even a small fire to the experts like ServiceMaster All Care Restoration in Phoenix, AZ. Here’s why.
Kitchen fires produce a mix of residues that need to be cleaned up properly – One big challenge of a kitchen fire is that you often have more than one type of material that burns and leaves a residue. Understanding how to clean these residues and the tools to use is not an easy task for the average home/property owner. Here are the types of residues that need to be cleaned:
- Natural substances such as paper, wood or natural fabrics
- Protein substances such as burnt food and grease
- Synthetic substances such as plastics (like on your microwave or a cooking utensil)
Ideally, each type of substance should be cleaned with the proper method specific to that substance.
That smoky smell is tough to combat – You can clean and clean, but the smell of smoke can still remain. The size of a smoke particle is .004 micros in size (you need a microscope to see it ). Each one of these particles has an odor. These small microscopic particles get inside your walls through your air ducts, into your cabinets, behind wood trim, underneath your carpet, etc. Even if you are the best cleaner, there are so many places you may miss and it can take weeks for the smell to finally dissipate.
The fire may have done more damage that you think – Yes, you can usually tell if there has been any damage to your house. However, if flames shot up through an air duct, for instance, it’s possible that there could be damage that you can’t see. Having an expert come out and inspect your home can be worth the peace of mind.
If you would like to know more and live in the Phoenix, AZ area, contact ServiceMaster All Care Restoration at (623) 777-3443.