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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Why we use dry sponges

5/4/2021 (Permalink)

Soot from House Fire in Adair Example of soot left over from a fire we were called out on in Adair, Oklahoma

Dry Sponges aka Smoke Sponges are a type of sponge that SERVPRO® of Mayes and Wagoner Counties use to remove soot during a fire cleanup.

Dry Sponge Cleaning

The Dry-Cleaning Sponge is used to clean smoke residues from surfaces. Dry Cleaning Sponges are made of vulcanized natural rubber, like an eraser rubber sponges that contain no chemical products for the purpose of cleaning. Rather, sponges clean through friction and absorption. As a sponge is pressed, rubbed, and pulled across a soiled surface, the porous sponge absorbs soils from the surface. Firm pressure is needed to “erase” soot from a surface. Dry Cleaning Sponges are effective in some situations, but not in others.

Sponges clean flat, nonglossy surfaces better than glossy surfaces. The sponge often smears residues on a glossy surface, where a wet cleaning process is needed to remove the residues. Dry Cleaning Sponges can usually remove light-to-medium soils and residues that are non-greasy but should not be used for greasy residues.

Dry cleaning is the best alternative when wet cleaning is not possible. Wet cleaning is a more effective process for removing residues, but some surfaces may be damaged by a wet cleaning process. For example, moisture can set smoke residues into a porous surface, causing stains. Dry cleaning is the safest method to use on unfinished wood surfaces to avoid moisture setting residues into the porous wood.

Once the surface of the Dry Sponge is dirty, it must be discarded and cannot be cleaned or reused. The Dry Sponges are very porous and holds a remarkable amount of soot. After wiping soot off the surface, it then can be washed to the original condition.

A few notes if you do have a fire and soot is present.

  • Don’t attempt to wash any walls.
  • Don’t attempt to clean carpet or upholstered furniture without consulting SERVPRO® first.
  • Do place towels or old linens over the carpet to limit further damage by walking on it.
  • Do limit the movement throughout the structure to prevent soot particles from being further embedded into carpets and upholstery.
  • Do keep hands clean and don’t touch anything that has soot on it.
  • If the electricity is off, do empty any refrigerators, freezers and prop the doors open. This will prevent the food from leaving odors in the appliance after it is turned off.
  • Don’t operate any electrical appliances or equipment that might have smoke damage until they have been cleaned and checked.
  • Don’t send clothing with smoke residue to dry cleaners that are not experienced in cleaning fire-damaged clothing. SERVPRO® can help you in this step at getting your clothing cleaned.
  • Do wash plants on both sides of the leaves with water.
  • If your HVAC system was on, do make sure that the filter is changed and consult SERVPRO® regarding cleaning your HVAC duct system.
  • Throw out any cosmetic or medications that may have been contaminated by smoke or the heat of the fire.
  • Do not use any canned or packaged food that was close to the heat of the fire.

If you have any questions, call your SERVPRO® of Mayes and Wagoner Counites, 918-486-1055. 24/7 Emergency Response.  Always FREE Estimates for any job.

SERVPRO® of Mayes and Wagoner Counties specializes in Fire and Water Cleanup and Restoration.

SERVPRO® has an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau.

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