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Old 01-17-2012, 10:30 AM   #1
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Light Fire Restoration / Odor Concerns


We had a pretty good fire in the home. Luckily (Somehow) we have VERY little actual fire damage to the structure. We've stripped interior down to the studs throughout. As far as a fire restoration job goes, this has to be very low on the scale of how bad it could be. My big concern is my better half. If there is ever even a hint of a smell to reminder her of all this. She will NEVER be happy. Even now that all the drywall / flooring and contents are removed, I don't smell any fire.

The plan right now is to get the furnace going and dry it out to keep a stable temperature in there. Then go in and remove the couple of pieces of burned wood. Other wood near the fire has a very light coloring to it. Almost like someone hit it with a heat gun. I intend to just sand that lightly, then get a sprayer and seal the entire, attic, underside of the roofing and all the studs / interior of the exterior wall surfaces. My digging has me leaning toward using Zinsser Bin.

Then I'll give that a few days to dry, get the electrician in there and be on our way forward. Opinions and thoughts?

There are also a couple very small spots that have some light mold on them from being damp for so long, whats the best way to clean that up before doing the sealing?

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Old 01-17-2012, 02:58 PM   #2
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You will probably save yourself lots in the long run bringing in a restoration team. I know national franchises like ServiceMaster have all the toys for this sort of thing. There are probably other companies local to you with the expertise, chemicals and tools to do this for you.

Sorry for your loss. It does sound you got lucky.

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Old 01-17-2012, 06:04 PM   #3
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BIN is the way to go with masking odor, the only way really. As to the mold, if it's only light surface and recent growth, some bleach will kill it. Now, the mold guys will rain down on my head. My question is why this isn't being handled by a fire restoration outfit. I've never seen this being handled by the homeowner.
As well, sorry for your loss.
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Old 01-17-2012, 09:04 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by sdsester View Post
You will probably save yourself lots in the long run bringing in a restoration team. I know national franchises like ServiceMaster have all the toys for this sort of thing. There are probably other companies local to you with the expertise, chemicals and tools to do this for you.

Sorry for your loss. It does sound you got lucky.
I will save A LOT by not using a Franchise that will remain nameless. I'm half inclined to report them to the BBB. They met my girlfriend at the site assumed she knew nothing and quoted her a ton of services we don't need. The estimate was so ridiculous high, it was more then 50% of my entire insurance claim. And all they were quoting was cleaning and sealing! No demolition and no rebuilding. There is very very little burn damage. The smoke damage was contained to the drywall. The others that have surveyed the site and were honest agreed that we're really on doing this as a precaution and for peace of mind. It's really not completely necessary.

Other quotes were much more in line, but again the damage was so minimal, it doesn't warrant a full restoration.

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BIN is the way to go with masking odor, the only way really. As to the mold, if it's only light surface and recent growth, some bleach will kill it. Now, the mold guys will rain down on my head. My question is why this isn't being handled by a fire restoration outfit. I've never seen this being handled by the homeowner.
As well, sorry for your loss.
It's just surface mold from the moisture that was retained while the insurance took too long to sort things out. I've had a mold company come in and they've stated it's simple, surface and a real no rocket science case.

I'm GC'ing the job on my own. Sadly my family has been through this before in a much more serious situation many many years ago. So we know what needs to be done. I've also got a number of family friends that are contractors, so I have a large pool of qualified help and resources. The only reason I chose to do this is because of the good luck in the lack of real damage to the structure and the contacts and help I have.

Of the 2 small areas damaged, one is a window that we will re-frame any way. The other is a wall that we've torn down and are building a half wall between 2 rooms. Even the inspectors came in, looked around and were surprised how little damage is there.
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Old 01-18-2012, 05:05 AM   #5
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I will save A LOT by not using a Franchise that will remain nameless. I'm half inclined to report them to the BBB. They met my girlfriend at the site assumed she knew nothing and quoted her a ton of services we don't need. The estimate was so ridiculous high, it was more then 50% of my entire insurance claim. And all they were quoting was cleaning and sealing! No demolition and no rebuilding. There is very very little burn damage. The smoke damage was contained to the drywall. The others that have surveyed the site and were honest agreed that we're really on doing this as a precaution and for peace of mind. It's really not completely necessary.

Other quotes were much more in line, but again the damage was so minimal, it doesn't warrant a full restoration.



It's just surface mold from the moisture that was retained while the insurance took too long to sort things out. I've had a mold company come in and they've stated it's simple, surface and a real no rocket science case.

I'm GC'ing the job on my own. Sadly my family has been through this before in a much more serious situation many many years ago. So we know what needs to be done. I've also got a number of family friends that are contractors, so I have a large pool of qualified help and resources. The only reason I chose to do this is because of the good luck in the lack of real damage to the structure and the contacts and help I have.

Of the 2 small areas damaged, one is a window that we will re-frame any way. The other is a wall that we've torn down and are building a half wall between 2 rooms. Even the inspectors came in, looked around and were surprised how little damage is there.

You must not trust them to much to be here asking for directions.
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Old 01-18-2012, 09:12 AM   #6
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JoeSheridan, I agree with you about surface mold. I, too, use regular bleach for most mildew...........it works! I know the experts say the mold spores are not killed by the bleach yet I use it all the time and the mold doesn't regrow in most cases. What do I know?
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Old 01-18-2012, 09:53 AM   #7
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Here's two differant case of so called damage control companys work.
pipes burst in an attic in a three story weekend home. (one of the many reasons to never run plumbing in an attic or outside wall)
Water ran out at full pressure for two weeks. The green team (you know who they are) came in. All they did was roll up the carpets and left them in the house, removed base boards and use a hachet to remove the bottom of the sheetrock up about 6". Total bill was over $4000.00.
They never remove the rugs from the house, left the foam padding on top of partical board sub flooring. All the soaking wet bedding was left on top of the beds, the mattress where now soaked all the way through, laminite flooring was not removed. Ceilings were sagging from all the water still on top of them and they never even removed the soaking wet insulation in the attic.
Next case the company begins with Peer and the trucks are white with red letters. A tornado came through here and distroyed dozens of homes. We ended up with two right next to each other that had the roofing torn off and in some places the whole roof was gone. There were next door working on one of then when the agent showed up and gave them permition to work on the one next door that we also had a contract on.
Total bill over $7000.00. For just one of the houses.
We stood right there and told them all the sheetrock and insulation had to go, the partical board subflooring over sleepers had to go, paneling in the woods also had to all go.
When we showed up only half the house had been gutted, partical board still on the floor and there was 1-1/2 of standing water under it. Paneling was left on. No fans or dehumidifyers running.
The customer was billed for removing and reinstalling installing the cabinets, all they did was moved them.
They were billed $250.00 to remove a garbage disposal, they did not even have one.
They were charged for spraying a mildicide, but the whole inside was black mold from floor to ceiling.
Charged $1000.00 for removing paneling in all rooms when they only had it in closits and one wall and they only removed it from one wall. The closits were left undone were all black mold and all delaminated.
It was such a botched up job they ended up cutting us a check to do all the work they were suppost to have done to keep the customer from taking them to court.
I've got plenty more about the so called Green team but you get the idea.
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Old 01-18-2012, 11:03 PM   #8
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You must not trust them to much to be here asking for directions.
None of them do fire restoration or mold. Funny guy.
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Old 01-19-2012, 03:56 AM   #9
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I'm GC'ing the job on my own. Sadly my family has been through this before in a much more serious situation many many years ago. So we know what needs to be done. I've also got a number of family friends that are contractors, so I have a large pool of qualified help and resources. The only reason I chose to do this is because of the good luck in the lack of real damage to the structure and the contacts and help I have.

So. you already know what needs to be done and have a POOL of QUALIFIED help why are you here asking?,funny guy
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Old 01-19-2012, 07:40 AM   #10
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I used to work for a fire and restoration company as a subcontractor. They did great work. Rarely did I have to break out the Cover Stain. Usually whatever chemical cleaners, etc. that they used cleaned off any smoke damage and removed any smoke smell. Occasionally, we would have to apply Cover Stain to a back bedroom ceiling that was away from the main fire area. A funny story........they didn't trust us subs I guess so they would not give us the combination to the lockbox on the front door. They always wanted a rep of theirs at the site......anyway, I got tired of crawling through a window to get in.......so I analyzed the lockbox and could deduce the 4 number code by how much "gunk"/wear was on the numbers. Took a wild stab at it and figured out the code. Didn't have to wait to get in anymore! Victory for the subs......

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