Thick smoke billowed into a block of flats after bins to the rear of the building caught fire.
Fire crews from Smethwick and Oldbury were called to Alfred Gunn House, in Thompson Road, Langley, at around 10pm yesterday.
The fire was extinguished quickly but officers remained at the scene for nearly two hours to ventilate the building.
All nine floors were affected by the smoke.
No-one had to be evacuated from the building but residents returning home were asked to wait outside.
Crews said it was unclear how the bins had caught fire.
Watch Commander Lee Sketchley, of Smethwick Fire Station, said there could have been a number of causes.