Can You Restore Fire-Damaged Concrete?

Tuesday 22nd August 2023

Ellen Warren

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Burned concrete factory

CONTENTS

Restoring your property after a fire can be a daunting task. The damage caused by fire can significantly alter the structural integrity of your building, causing cracks, discolouration, and spalling, and requires immediate attention.

Here at ICE Cleaning, we offer our comprehensive fire cleaning solutions nationwide. Our technicians can restore the affected areas to their original condition while ensuring safety standards are met throughout the process. We can handle fire damage on various types of brick and stone, too, ensuring complete restoration.

Read on to learn more about fire-damaged concrete and the potential health hazards involved.

How fire affects concrete

A fire-damaged house can leave behind significant structural damage, especially to concrete structures. The heat from a fire uniquely interacts with the material, setting various reactions into motion within minutes.

Intense temperatures cause evaporation of water within the concrete, leading to cracking and spalling, where parts of the concrete break off due to thermal stress. This is why the fire damage repair process for concrete can be so complex.

If temperatures reach high enough levels for long periods, it could trigger chemical reactions within the cement paste, causing further degradation and compromising its strength.

Can concrete be restored?

Despite the difficulty of restoring fire-damaged concrete, with the right knowledge and tools it's possible to bring concrete surfaces back to their original state.

To repair fire damage on concrete surfaces effectively, professionals follow a meticulous process. This includes assessing structural damage caused by fire and water from firefighters' extinguishing efforts, targeting soot or smoke damage left behind, and drying out water damage.

Because of concrete's sustainability, it can easily be replaced with either a surface repair or a new slab entirely. Although this process can be extensive and costly, the results ensure a stable structure again.

Why you should not clean fire damage yourself

The results of a fire in your home can be overwhelming and it is natural to feel the need to start fixing things straight away. However, attempting to clean up after a fire yourself is not recommended for several reasons.

Cleaning fire-damaged concrete is not simple as it requires removing visible soot and debris, and scrubbing the air of any smoke particles left behind. Attempting this yourself could be dangerous due to toxic chemicals released during the fire. 

Fires often cause water damage from firefighters extinguishing the flames, too. This, combined with smoke damage, creates an unpleasant smell that permeates your property. The lingering odour is not just inconvenient, but the tiny smoke particles left behind pose health risks if inhaled.

Fire also damages the structural integrity of your property, making it incredibly unsafe to clean or interact with. Concrete that is cracked and coming away should be a cause for alarm as it may lead to the collapse of heavy debris that can cause injury.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you repair concrete after a fire?

The process involves removing damaged areas, cleaning the surface with specialised equipment, and then applying suitable repair material to restore its original condition.

How can you tell if concrete has been damaged by fire?

Signs of fire damage on concrete include cracking, discolouration, spalling, or crumbling. It may also feel hot to touch even after the fire is extinguished.

What are the effects of fire damage on concrete?

Fire can cause significant harm to concrete such as cracking, discolouration, and spalling which affects its structural integrity and appearance.

Does fire damage reinforced concrete?

Fire can weaken reinforcement bars within the structure leading to reduced load-bearing capacity and potential failure in severe cases.

Get in touch

It is crucial to leave the task of fire restoration to the professionals, like our technicians. They specialise in removing lingering smoke odours and ensuring the thorough clean-up of affected areas after the fire, making your home safe again.

To learn more about our fire damage cleaning services, you can get in touch with us at 0208 066 0360 or enquiries@icecleaning.co.uk. Our team are available 24/7, 365 days a year, and can respond to urgent enquiries nationwide.

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Reilly Peters

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Why choose us?

  • Cater to a wide variety of cleaning situations
  • Nationwide coverage, available 24/7
  • Cater to commercial and domestic clients
  • Free survey provided prior to quotation 
  • Emergency response team
  • Offer a bespoke service designed to suit all your needs 
  • All technicians hold professional health and safety qualifications, including BICSc, IOSH, Dewpoint Professional & Safe Contractor 

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We place best practise, professional expertise and health and safety at the core of our business. We’re fully compliant with all legal obligations. You can view a list of our accreditations below, or visit our Health & Safety page for more information.

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