Minimizing Smoke Damage
While you can't full prevent smoke from Texas wildfires from reaching your home downwind of the fires, you can take steps to minimize smoke damage. First, you'll need to block the smoke from entering your home in the first place.
Common smoke entry points include:
- Attic vents
- Crawl space vents
- Windows and doors
Make sure that each of these entry points is closed and sealed. At a minimum, close all doors and windows along with the flue to your fireplace so that smoke has fewer points of entry. Use wet towels to temporarily keep smoke from coming in through any door or window gaps. If you can safely reach the attic vents, turbines, and other ventilation points, cover them with plastic and duct tape. If your home has crawl space beneath it, seal any vents or openings so that smoke doesn't enter through the crawl space and seep up under your floors.
In addition, smoke can be circulated throughout your home through your central air conditioning and heating system or whole house fan system. If smoke does enter your home, avoid using these air circulation systems because once the smoke gets into the ductwork your smoke damage problems could compound and become extremely costly to recover from.
These measures can reduce the amount of smoke entering your home. However, smoke may still creep in through gaps in siding, brick weep holes, cracks, and other vulnerable areas – especially if the smoke is thick and extensive.
Despite your best efforts, smoke damage may result. If so, contact a public adjuster to ensure that your smoke damage claim is fully maximized.