Recent Fire Damage Posts
Grilling Fire Safety
Safe grilling is best grilling.
Summer is in full swing bringing cookouts, fireworks and hot dry weather. We want everyone to enjoy their summer to the fullest and to also best prepare you with some grilling safety tips to ensure that your barbecue goes off without a hitch.
Check out the following tips provided by fema.gov:
- 3 Feet: Only grill outside and keep it at minimum 3 feet from any siding, deck rails and eaves.
- Safe Zone: Keep a 3-foot safe zone around your grill to ensure that kids and pets remain safe.
- Open your gas grill before lighting.
- Monitor: Keep an eye on your grill, fire pit or patio torches while lit.
- Clean your grill after each use. This will remove grease that can start a fire.
- Place the coals from your grill in a metal can with a lid once they have cooled.
Taking a few precautions will help create a safe environment for your summer fun. If you need more information on our fire and water restoration services, please give us a call at 254-224-5999.
Fire Damage: Smoke, Soot and Smells
At first glance, this might look overwhelming. SERVPRO of Greater Waco can handle it.
Home is your safe place, but the destruction a house fire leaves behind can leave you feeling hopeless, stressed and wondering if you will ever be able to get back to the way it was before. In the event of a fire in your home, we are ready to respond to your needs and lend a compassionate hand as we guide you through the restoration process of your home from start to finish.
You might notice that after the fire has been safely put out that there is damage to your home in areas far from where the fire originated. As the temperature rises inside a building, air expands carrying soot into cooler areas. Smoke will migrate into upper areas of a structure, allowing it to permeate other things like your ventilation system. Smoke and soot staining not only are unsightly and difficult to remove, they also produce odors which could be harmful if inhaled.
Before we begin the restoration process on your home, we assess the damage and pre-test the affected materials to determine the appropriate cleaning procedure. We then use the results to specifically tailor the cleaning procedure we will use in your home to provide you with the best plan to appropriately address your loss. Not every fire loss is cleaned in the same manner.
Unsure if restoration is possible? Give us a call at 254-224-5999 and let SERVPRO® of Greater Waco show you how we make disasters “Like it never even happened.”
Fire Safety Tips Part 1
This Fire was caused by a cigarette that did not make it into the ashtray properly. SERVPRO® of Greater Waco was called out to clean up the aftermath.
With the holidays behind us hopefully everyone has put up their Christmas decorations. As homeowners it is essential to be mindful of the presence of fire hazards and to minimize the possibility of them causing a structure fire. A good example is keeping around a severely dehydrated, and highly flammable Christmas tree too long. SERVPRO® of Greater Waco has compiled the following prevention tips for some areas in your home to help keep you and your loved ones safe from possible fire hazards throughout the new year.
In the kitchen:
• Avoid leaving cooking food unattended. If a grease fire occurs, use baking soda to extinguish it. NEVER use water on a grease fire. You can smother the fire in the pan by starving it of oxygen by placing a lid over it. Always supervise children that are cooking and educate on the dangers of fire and cooking appliances.
• Be aware of where you leave pot holders, dish towels, aprons and any cooking utensils.
• Ensure that electrical appliances are far from sinks, flames or hot plates
• Invest in carbon monoxide detector if your home does not already have one if you use natural gas for heating and cooking.
In living areas & bedrooms:
• Make your home a smoke free environment if possible, or at least ensure that cigars, cigarettes, and pipes are properly extinguished prior to disposal as they may continue to burn and may reignite.
• Recycle and replace appliances with damaged electrical cords
• Avoid running electrical wires or cords under the weight of heavy furniture and rugs
• If you feel that you often have to unplug an appliance to plug in another because your outlet is overloaded, reconsider spacing out appliances to other outlets
• Be aware that clothing or draperies do not rest atop lighting such as desk lamps.
Take a moment from your day to check the areas in your home and see if there are any possible fire hazards.
Check out our next blog for fire safety prevention tips for your bathrooms and garage from SERVPRO® of Greater Waco.
Fire Safety Tips Part 2
This home window was melted from the heat of a fire, it suffered no direct contact with the flames, but melted due to its proximity of the flame.
In our previous blog SERVPRO® of Greater Waco covered some fire safety tips for the kitchen, living areas, and bedrooms. Here you’ll find more suggestions on locating possible fire hazards that exist in your home and reminders of how to keep you and your loved ones safe from structure fires.
In the bathroom:
• Ensure that proper care is taken when using candles in a restroom for deodorizing and that they are snuffed out before you leave
• Use appropriate incense plates or burners; do not leave cones or sticks lying on counters, shelving or windowsills
• Turn off hairstyling irons before you walk away from it and invest in fire resistant holders
• Do not use, or charge, electronic devices near you while you are showering or bathing
• Before leaving home turn off any wax or oil potpourri pots
In the garage/storage:
• Chemicals such as fuels, solvents, cleaning agents, thinners, adhesives, and paints could ignite or explode due to improper storage. Make sure you take time to organize chemicals and to properly store them, preferably away from the house if possible. Dispose of anything that is damaged or leaking.
• Do not use stoves or barbecue grills inside the garage; you could not only start a fire, but also die from carbon monoxide inhalation
• If fire extinguishers are present in the home, ensure that everyone knows its location and how to use it. We also recommend having a fire plan in place.
Now, this is not a comprehensive list by any means, but these tips should be covered with family and/or roommates so that everyone understands where fire hazards exist for everyone’s safety and well-being. SERVPRO® of Greater Waco hopes you never have to experience the effects of a fire loss where you live, but we are here to help if you ever need our services. Call us 24 hours a day at (254) 224-5999.
After the Fire...
This was a complex Waco fire that SERVPRO of Greater Waco was able to restore all the clients personal contents back to a preloss condition.
There are a number of problems that a fire in your home or business leaves behind even after the immediate danger has passed. It is often the case that a thorough cleaning of walls, ceilings, carpeting, woodwork, and flooring will need to be professionally done. There are also a number of appropriate steps that can be taken in order to prevent further damage until SERVPRO of Greater Waco arrives on the scene. The chances of an effective restoration will be boosted by reducing damage by following a few tips:
- Try to keep movement in the home to a minimum. Soot can become ingrained in the upholstery or carpeting from repeated movement in the home.
- Use old towels or linens to cover up high traffic carpeted areas and upholstery.
- If the power is off, empty the refrigerator and freezer of all contents and prop open the door to help prevent unpleasant smells.
- Be mindful of what you are touching. Your hands can become soiled with soot and that can be transferred to other items in the home.
- If you can immediately wipe all the soot off sink faucets and metal window molding, then coat with petroleum jelly to prevent the soot from pitting the metal surfaces.
Following just a few of these steps can be a game changer in the restorability of your home and personal items. SERVPRO of Greater Waco is here to help you through a catastrophe that is a fire loss. If you suffer a fire or smoke damage remember SERVPRO of Greater Waco are your fire restoration experts backed by years of experience and a team of knowledgeable individuals.
The Holidays are coming up
It’s November which means it’s the beginning of the holiday season. It is the time of year that families get together for a Thanksgiving or Christmas feast. It is also the time to practice safe cooking habits so that your happy holiday does not become a holiday disaster.
According to the National Fire Protection Association, cooking is the number one cause for fires in homes with Thanksgiving day being the day of the year with most fires reported. Let’s try to be safe this holiday season by following some guidelines:
- If you are cooking food in the kitchen, stay in the kitchen. If you must leave the kitchen, you should turn off the stove
- Keep children away from the cooking area. As much as some children like to help it is best to keep them at least 3 feet away from the cooking area, especially during a family get together when kitchen traffic may be high.
- Flammable items such as paper goods, towels, food packaging, and oven mitts need to be kept away from the oven and stovetop.
- Regularly clean the cooking area
- Purchase a fire extinguisher for your home if you don’t have one already
- Have smoke alarms installed if you don’t have them
- Always check all equipment used for cooking after you are finished and are ready for bed or leaving the house. This includes all appliances that were used as well as the stove and oven.
SERVPRO of Greater Waco wants everybody to have a safe holiday season, but in the event that the need arises we are available 24/7 and 365.
According to The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), a Home structure fire is reported every 90 seconds.
A dryer that a homeowner returned home to find just in time to remove before it caused significant damage to his home.
With our lives becoming more and more reliant on electronics are we more at risk for a fire? Think about the number of items in your home that have electronic circuitry, each one has the potential to malfunction and could be the cause of a fire in your home. While we keep adding devices in our homes, we also keep increasing the demand on our home’s electrical system. Are we creating a higher risk with each and every device we bring home and plug in?
Are you the type that leaves home with one or more of your appliances running in your absence? A recent homeowner took to Facebook to share his near miss with a malfunctioning dryer. Luckily the owner returned home in time to pull the dryer out of the house before it caused significant damage. While SERVPRO of Greater Waco is here to help you if your home suffers are fire or smoke loss, we are also here to help provide tips that could possibly prevent a fire from ever starting in your home.
Here are SERVPRO of Greater Waco’s Top 10 things you can do to help prevent a fire in your home:
- Test your smoke detectors regularly, we recommend replacing the batteries every six months for peace of mind to know that they will operate properly when you most need them to.
- Consider replacing old appliances before it is too late. As appliances age they become more likely to malfunction which could result in an ignition spark.
- Avoid overloading electrical circuits, most in home circuits are rated for 15amps. A general rule of thumb is not to put more than 80% load (12amps) on any 15-amp breaker, or risk overloading the circuit.
- Clean your dryer lint trap after each cycle and manually inspect your dryer vent at least once a year.
- Unplug toasters after each use and do no not store them on countertops where pets may knock them off.
- Do not run appliances when you are not home, especially your dishwasher, dryer, or washing machine.
- Do not use water, or flour, to put out a grease fire. Smothering or Baking Soda are the preferred methods.
- Select the proper gauge extension cord for the job, be careful not to overload them which causes them to overheat.
- Create and practice a home evacuation plan with all members of your family.
- Purchase and install fire extinguishers, they are handy when you need them.
Doing these simple things could help reduce your chances of experiencing a fire loss in your home. SERVPRO of Greater Waco is committed to helping reduce home fires to create a safer environment for your family.
We are always here to help, feel free to contact us at 254-224-5999 for all your Waco area Fire and Smoke needs.
SERVPRO of Greater Waco Smoke and Soot Cleanup
Smoke and Soot Damage Can Cause a Pervasive Odor beyond the Obvious damage in your Waco home or business.
Smoke and soot are very invasive and can penetrate various cavities within your home, causing hidden damage and odor. Our smoke damage expertise and experience allow us to inspect and accurately assess the extent of the damage to develop a comprehensive plan of action.
Smoke and Soot facts:
- Hot smoke migrates to cooler areas and upper levels of a structure.
- Smoke flows around plumbing systems, seeping through the holes used by pipes to go from floor to floor.
- The type of smoke may greatly affect the restoration process.
Different Types of Smoke
There are two different types of smoke–wet and dry. As a result, there are different types of soot residue after a fire. Before restoration begins, SERVPRO of Greater Waco will test the soot to determine which type of smoke damage occurred. The cleaning procedures will then be based on the information identified during pretesting. Here is some additional information:
Wet Smoke – Plastic and Rubber
- Low heat, smoldering, pungent odor, sticky, smeary. Smoke webs are more difficult to clean.
Dry Smoke – Paper and Wood
- Fast burning, high temperatures, heat rises therefore smoke rises.
Protein Fire Residue – Produced by evaporation of material rather than from a fire
- Virtually invisible, discolors paints and varnishes, extreme pungent odor.
Our Fire Damage Restoration Services
Since each smoke and fire damage situation is a little different, each one requires a unique solution tailored for the specific conditions. We have the equipment, expertise, and experience to restore your fire and smoke damage. We will also treat your family with empathy and respect and your property with care.
Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call Us Today – 254-224-5999