2 min read

Dangers of Smoke Damage After a Fire

Dangers of Smoke Damage After a Fire

Fire is dangerous, that’s obvious enough, but few people understand the dangers of smoke damage after a fire. At CRC we want you and your peers to be protected not only from fire but also from the issues that can occur after you have survived a fire in your building.

Did You Know?

When people think of building fires, many focus on the flames burning things to ash, but the underlying killer of fires is usually the smoke. 

Smoke is the leading cause of death in fires; it surpasses burns by a 3:1 ratio. Many people understand that direct exposure to smoke is harmful to your respiratory system, but did you know that the smoke can cause issues with your building's structure? Smoke from a fire contains carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, and soot. Whatever burns in the fire can release harmful chemicals that are dangerous when inhaled or cling to walls, furniture, ductwork, clothing, and more.

Knowing more about the dangers of smoke after a fire can help when it comes to restoring your building to its pre-loss state.

Flow of Smoke

Since hot air rises smoke damage commonly occurs in the following locations:

  • Directly above the fire. This scenario assumes there were no strong air currents flowing through the structure. The highest concentration of smoke will usually be found on the ceiling over the flames.
  • Outside windows and walls. Cold air sinks below warm air. This will allow a path for the smoke to travel to exterior walls. This occurs even if the fire occurs in the center of a large room. These exterior windows and walls will often incur smoke damage and contain heavy amounts of smoke residue. 

Temperature and Airflow Determines A LOT

One of the most surprising things about the dangers of smoke damage after a fire is where else in your building it can be found. This makes sense once you understand how temperature and airflow interact with the surrounding environment. Heavy smoke damage occurs in the following areas:

  • Enclosed spaces: Closed closets, wall cavities, and drawers may seem like places which would incur very little damage, but in fact, these areas will frequently sustain more damage than the area where the fire actually burned. Part of this is because air and smoke particles move faster in warm air. Smoke naturally moves towards cooler areas and as the particles move into enclosed, cool spaces they slow down and come to rest.
  • Behind drapes and blinds: Because of the cooler temperatures and often because of the material involved, smoke damage can be quite high.
  • In ducts: Also due to cooler temperatures, smoke will frequently come to rest in the ductwork. Following a fire, a thorough inspection should be performed to figure out the true extent of your building’s smoke damage.

If you have had a fire and are experiencing the dangers of smoke damage after a fire, contact us at CRC. We can help you sort through how best to restore and repair your building following a fire.

CRC Elevates Chuck Borden to Dual Role of President & CEO

CRC Elevates Chuck Borden to Dual Role of President & CEO

CENTENNIAL, COLORADO, February 27, 2024 – Commercial Restoration Company (CRC), a leading national provider of commercial restoration and...

Read More
Ensuring Safety in Multifamily Properties During the Holiday Season

Ensuring Safety in Multifamily Properties During the Holiday Season

The holiday season is a time of joy, festivities, and togetherness. However, it also presents unique challenges for property managers in multifamily...

Read More
Prepare Your Pipes: How to Prevent & Handle Frozen and Burst Pipes

Prepare Your Pipes: How to Prevent & Handle Frozen and Burst Pipes

As the temperature drops during the cold winter months, one of the major concerns homeowners and business owners face is the possibility of frozen...

Read More