If you suffered a house fire, you may wonder if you need a specialist to clean your clothing. While many people assume they can clean their clothing on their own, it can be more difficult than you think. There are several factors that affect how you should approach cleaning clothing after a fire. Experts have experience with the following four factors, making it easier for them to create a cleaning plan for your clothing:
The Clothing Material
Just like with regular washing, the type of material the clothing is made out of will determine how it should be cleaned. But unlike with regular washing, you will need to take into consideration not only how the detergent and washing method will react with the clothing fibers, but how it will react with the clothing fibers and the soot or odor from the fire. You may find that 100% polyester fabrics are unable to be returned to their pre-fire state with any method of cleaning. However, most blends and natural materials should be able to be cleaned using liquid detergent and a wet-cleaning method.
The Color of the Material
Bleach is one of the more effective methods of removing soot and scent from fabrics. However, this may not be suitable for darker colors. Before treating your clothes, you should separate them into whites, lights, and darks. This will allow you to determine which types of wet detergents work best while still protecting the colors of your clothes.
The Fuel of the Fire
What materials were in the fire will affect how your clothing should be cleaned. For example, treatment of clothing that was in a fire with many melted plastics will be highly different than the treatment of clothing in a wood fire. Plastics and tars will be more difficult to remove from clothing. Wood fires tend to be the easiest to clean after. When sorting your materials, you should take note of what was in the room with the affected clothing. This will help you or an expert know how to approach your cleaning.
The Amount of Soot
Ideally, soot should be removed from clothing before the clothing is moved from its initial placement during the fire. By moving clothing with soot on it, you risk rubbing the soot into the clothing, making it more difficult to remove. However, with light soot, you may be able to move the clothing before doing an initial vacuum cleaning.
Contact a company to help you with your clothes fire damage for more information.