Recent Fire Damage Posts

The Facts About Fire Safety | SERVPRO of Englewood, Placida

12/22/2023 (Permalink)

fire roof Has a fire affected your home or business? SERVPRO of Englewood/Placida is "Here to Help" 24/7, 365.

Is your home fire-safe? Fire safety tends to be something we take for granted. We put up smoke detectors around the house and check them every once in a while, or at least when they start making that annoying beeping sound. And then we just hope for the best. 

Did you know that the United States has the highest number of people killed by fire every year? Smoke detectors are a great first line of defense and can mean the difference between life and death. But there are many other ways to make fire safety a top priority in your home and avoid becoming part of that statistic.

With a better understanding of the facts about fire and some basic safety steps, your family will be safe through any emergency. 

Get to Know the Facts

If you do some research about fire, what you might find can be pretty astounding. While most of us think fire is something that will never happen in our homes or that we are prepared enough to keep everyone safe if it does, getting to know more of the facts might make you feel different. 

There are an average of 358,500 house fires every year. In only 30 seconds, a small flame can turn into a roaring blaze, and every day at least one child dies from a house fire. These are only a few of the facts that are out there—but they are pretty alarming reasons why fire safety should become one of our daily practices. 

You can take steps now and each and every day to break away from these statistics and rest a little easier knowing your family is safe. Since house fires cost nearly $12 billion in damage each and every year, by prioritizing fire safety, you are not only protecting your family, but you are also avoiding major financial losses. 

Fire Safety Basics

We already know that smoke detectors are a great first step toward safety, but you need to have enough working alarms in your house to actually be able to respond appropriately when a fire starts. You should have one on every level of your home and outside every bedroom. These should be tested monthly while everyone is around; it’s crucial to know what your detector sounds like so you can get moving immediately when you hear it. 

Put a fire extinguisher in your kitchen for another layer of safety. Cooking fires cause nearly 50% of all house fires, most of them occurring when a stove or other cooking appliance is left unattende

Always stay near a hot stove, griddle, oven or grill so that you can take quick action if something starts to burn. If you are cooking something in the oven and your meal catches fire, turn the oven off and leave the oven door closed until the flames are out. Smother grease fires with a pan lid or something else solid, and don’t place any soft materials near a hot stove. 

Make a fire safety plan with your family. Include exit routes and a meetup location as well as a communication plan for when disaster strikes. Practice your fire safety plan regularly, perhaps even creating some challenges to keep the fear factor low and really impress on your children what to do. 

Even if you experience a small flame you were able to quickly put out, call our experts at SERVPRO®. Smoke and soot damage can spread far from where the original flames were, and we have the tools and experience to clean all of it up quickly. 

Do you have fire, smoke or soot damage in your home? Contact us for fast restoration.

4 Steps for Recovering From a Business Fire

12/31/2021 (Permalink)

Firefighters putting out a fire in a big building Fire damage in North Port, FL.

Four Steps to Get Back on Your Feet After a Business Fire

It doesn't take much time for fire to derail your successful business, and when the smoke clears, you still have a long process of cleanup to tackle. After all, smoke damage settles into furnishings, inventory, and even the walls and floors of buildings. Take the following steps to successfully deal with the damage.

1. Discuss Costs and Coverage With Your Insurance Provider

There are many cleaning and restoration professionals available who provide soot damage and smoke cleaning services. Some insurance plans cover this type of service. As you discuss the details of coverage with your insurance agent, consider asking about the following services:

  • Protecting property from more damage
  • Completing repairs for existing damages
  • Storing inventory
  • Remodeling buildings and structures on the property
  • Replacing property, belongings, and inventory that are beyond repair

The better you understand your coverage, the better prepared you'll be to oversee the recovery process.

2. Restore and Replace Valuable Documents

Just about every business has important documents on-site. These may include proof of licensing, business credit cards, employee records, billing documents, contracts with providers, and even cash. Moving paperwork to a clean, dry location, away from further smoke damage, should help protect documents and help you get your business back on track as quickly as possible.

3. Save Receipts for Everything

Keep receipts and make a record of any money you spend that is related to the fire. The insurance company will need those records, and you may use them later to prove losses while completing taxes. Consider talking to an accountant for more information about special tax benefits.

4. Maintain Communication With Local Officials

Protect the safety of your employees, buildings, and other officials by alerting the fire and police departments to your comings and goings. Don't enter buildings or use utilities until you've had official permission. Discuss problems with your landlord or insurance company.

These four steps can help you and your North Port, FL, business recover from fire and smoke damage. What have you already done to protect your business and property from fire dangers?

3 Ways to Protect Against Dryer Fire

10/25/2021 (Permalink)

hand removing lint from dryer filter Your dryer’s lint screen must be cleaned every time you do a load of laundry.

3 Ways to Prevent Dryer Fires

You may not give much thought to your dryer as a fire hazard. You simply put wet clothes in, turn it on and take them out when they are dry. Fire restoration specialists, however, see a lot of fire damage that started as a lint fire. To protect your home in Boca Grande, FL, from dryer fire, you should remove lint before every use and have a proper maintenance schedule for your dryer.

1. Lint Removal

Your dryer’s lint screen must be cleaned every time you do a load of laundry. Remove the screen and wipe your hand across it. A ball of lint forms as you do this, making it easier to remove the rest of the lint from the screen. Every few weeks, it is a good idea to wash the screen with water to remove any residue that has collected on it. Vacuuming out the screen vent before you replace the screen can help prevent lint fire by keeping lint from building up in the area.

2. Vent Cleaning

The lint screen is not the only place where lint collects. Lint is also exhausted through the hose attached to the back of the dryer and the vent in the wall. Every six months, you need to clean the hose and the wall vent. This helps prevent a buildup of lint that can ignite a fire in your home in Boca Grande, FL, causing extensive fire damage.

3. Dryer Dusting

The third place that lint accumulates is in the body of the dryer itself. Approximately every six months, unplug the dryer, open the back of it and clean out any lint that you see. You can use your hose attachment on your vacuum and a dry cloth to dust the inside of the dryer.

Everyone can remember to clean the lint screen, but if you want to make sure the job is done thoroughly, you can hire professionals to clean the inside of the dryer and the vents. No matter who does it, though, keeping a rigorous maintenance schedule for your dryer helps to prevent lint fire.

4 Types of Smoke Remediation

7/22/2021 (Permalink)

Living room suffered fire loss, chairs and wall covered with soot. Smoke damage can cause permanent discoloration on all kinds of household materials, such as wall tiles, ceiling materials, wood and many others.

Types Of Smoke Remediation

Smoke cleaning is an important process after a fire has affected your Rotunda West, FL home. Soot and smoke can cling to the surfaces of your house as well as your belongings. If left unattended, the damage could further permeate your structure and become harder to fully remove. Your residential fire cleanup professionals may use various methods to clean up the smoke.

1. Thermal Foggers: When you hear about thermal foggers, you may think of pest control. However, this equipment can also help remove smoke odor. The technique recreates fire-like elements, such as pressurization and heat. The porous materials in your house pick up the deodorization materials in the same way they picked up the smoke odors.
2. Air Filtration Devices: Some air purifiers can help in the smoke cleaning process. The fine, professional-grade filters actually help catch the odor-causing particles. The filtration system can simultaneously help you deal with mold problems and excessive moisture in your home as well.
3. Ozone Machines: The smoke odor in your home could also be removed by an ozone machine. This equipment kills certain particles in the air to ensure your home is free of bad odors and dangerous airborne irritants.
4. Solvent Cleaners: Solvent cleaners help remove the physical signs of smoke damage. Your cleanup team may use wet and dry cleaners on various surfaces in your home. In some cases, the building materials in your home may actually have to be removed rather than cleaned. However, solvent cleaners can work to rid your house of soot and smells.

Smoke cleaning requires two different elements to be addressed. First, you have to worry about the unsightly soot that clings to your belongings. Second, you have to tackle the odor that permeates almost every surface in your home. When these two elements are addressed at the same time, you have a better chance of being happy with the restoration your home goes through.

What To Expect During the Fire Cleanup Process

7/13/2021 (Permalink)

Broken window, window frame with smoke., window boarded up. Concept of fire damage in a home. Board up services. Board up services to a home in Boca Grande, FL.

Fire Cleanup Process

If your home has recently sustained smoke damage or soot damage, it’s important to call fire restoration experts in Boca Grande, FL. Unless you have professional tools and expertise at your disposal, it can be nearly impossible for you to effectively get rid of the damage and odor on your own. Wondering what happens during the typical smoke cleaning process? Here’s what you can expect.

1. Thorough Inspection

Before beginning the cleanup and restoration process, professional fire restoration experts will first thoroughly inspect the damage and make an assessment. Once this process is complete, a plan of action can be created.

2. Board-Up Services

Fire damage frequently breaks or damages windows, doors, walls, and roofs. When these crucial exterior elements are damaged, they expose the interior of the home to the elements. During the professional smoke restoration process, board-up services are provided as needed to maintain security and prevent damage.

3. Water Removal

If the fire in your home was put out with water, there is probably still residual moisture in your home. Fire restoration services remove excess water and dry the area with professional-grade air movers and dehumidifiers to minimize water damage.

4. Smoke Removal

Smoke damage can be stubborn and pervasive. Fortunately, fire restoration professionals have specialized equipment that can remove soot and smoke from various surfaces in the home.

5. Cleaning

Once water and smoke have been removed, professional cleaning services can be performed. During this process, indoor structures and belongings are cleaned with various techniques and products. Even odors are removed with the help of industrial fogging equipment and air scrubbers.

6. Restoration

The final step to restoring smoke and fire damage is restoring all areas that need it. As part of the restoration process, new carpet may be installed and drywall may be replaced.

As you can see, it would be practically impossible for a homeowner to do all these steps alone. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by smoke damage in your home, take some of the burdens off your shoulders by letting professional fire restoration experts repair the damage.