Recent Fire Damage Posts
Don't Let An Unattended Candle Destroy Your Bremerton Home
It does not take much for the flame of a candle to misbehave.
Leaving A Candle Unattended Can Cause Fire Damage Inside Of Your Bremerton Home
Lighting candles is an excellent way to bring a relaxing environment to your home, but it is always essential to remember that they are capable of causing fire damage when left unattended. It does not take much for the flame of a candle to misbehave. Having the fire too close to a curtain or another flammable material is a widespread mistake. Despite a person's nature, accidents so happen, and everyone has forgetful days.
When it comes to the fire damage inside of your Bremerton home, or during other similar accidents, it is always vital to react swiftly. The quicker that you call for professional remediation services, the better it can be for your home. Fire damages are time-sensitive, and the faster that they are addressed, the better it is for the remediation. Generally, if the fire damage can be addressed before the damaged object completely cools, the object may have a better chance of avoiding permanent damage.
When you call for SERVPRO, our technicians always react swiftly. We make a habit of arriving as fast as we possibly can to your home, so we have the best chance of remediating the damage inside successfully. Once inside, we can do a quick investigation to determine a remediation plan so that we may begin to work straight away.
The candle, which caused the fire damage inside of your bedroom, had been placed on your window sill. The flames burned up the string that hung down from your blinds and then spread across them. By the time the fire got to the curtains, you thankfully smelled the smoke and then extinguished the relatively small blaze.
SERVPRO can start the remediation by removing anything that was ruined by the fire, such as the charred remains of the blinds and the curtain. Knowing that the odor of fire can be unpleasant, and can remind you of what happened inside of your home, SERVPRO can set up an air scrubber with a carbon filter inside of it. While we work on the remediation, it can pull the very particles from the air that cause the scent and then neutralize them. To address the smoke-stains on your window sill, and on the surrounding walls, SERVPRO can use a custom cleaning solution to break up surface grime. Once the fire damage has been remediated, we can return your home to you in its preloss condition.
When your home suffers fire damage, never hesitate to call for help. Reach out to SERVPRO of Kitsap County by phoning (360) 373-1290. No matter the time, or the damage, we're ready to assist you.
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Let Our Experts Assist You After A Fire Damage Disaster In Your Bremerton Home
Call SERVPRO of Kitsap County to assess and restore your fire damaged property.
How Professionals Help You Tackle Underlying Issues After Fire Damage In Bremerton
Watching your entire home or a section engulfed in flames can be an overwhelming experience. Luckily, quick action from the fire department and occupants save most homes from destruction. The restoration process that follows can be confusing especially since most of the affected people are first-time victims. Understanding issues likely to crop up during restoration can help you deal with the situation better.
When fixing fire damage in Bremerton, there is a degree of restorative cleaning involved. Such cleaning seeks to restore the property to its preloss state. The restoration crew might, therefore, take steps to establish whether there are conditions that existed before the fire incident, which the restorative cleaning cannot address. Our SERVPRO technicians work closely with you and your insurance adjuster ensuring that all the involved parties iron out any such issues identified.
Fires leave pungent smelling debris in the affected properties. Odors produced during the blaze also penetrate materials and therefore even cleaning them up thoroughly rarely removes all odors. Odors can also develop due to secondary issues such as mold growth sparked by the water used during firefighting efforts. Elaborate deodorization is, therefore, part of restoring the property to preloss state. Our SERVPRO Odor Control Technicians use different approaches to deodorize property. Fogging removes smoke odor effectively because it replicates the conditions that deposit odor particles. We use ULV foggers or thermal foggers for this purpose.
Because of the different ways fires soil property, a variety of cleaning methods might be necessary to get the job done. Fire residues such as soot spread quickly in the affected property. They also cause corrosion or staining so pre-cleaning may be necessary. Combining wet cleaning and dry-cleaning is necessary because fires leave a variety of soluble and insoluble residues while some materials are affected by water. Our SERVPRO technicians pre-clean metallic surfaces and finishes to remove soot. We also apply a thin oil film to prevent corrosion and staining before we can do a thorough cleaning.
Being informed helps you deal with fire loss better. Call SERVPRO of Kitsap County to assess and restore your fire damaged property. You can reach us at (360) 373-1290 any time. We’re Faster to Any Size Disaster.
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Our IICRC Trained Professionals Are Ready To Restore Your Bremerton Home
We will remove all the fire damage from your home with our training, experience and equipment. We are ready for your call 24/7 so don't hesitate.
Conquering Lingering Fire Odor Damage in Bremerton
Fast residue removal along with mitigation of other damage done to your Bremerton home by fire is not the end of the restoration story. The long-term effects of a household fire extend in many directions, including continuous deterioration of building materials and contents if there are hidden areas or items left untreated. Even a thoroughly cleaned home can suffer from smoky odors months or more after fire cleanup. We have techniques that can help.
Your house survived the water removal, soot cleanup, and debris clearing needed to return it to preloss condition. All that stands between you and quiet enjoyment of your Bremerton home is professional fire odor damage remediation. Ridding a home of odors carried by the minute particles left after materials combust requires following a multi-step protocol that eventually neutralizes the smell. Our technicians have IICRC training and on the job experience to complete a deodorization successfully.
SERVPRO workers first make sure to remove all charred items from the area, including from building cavities, behind trim and kick plates, over ceilings, and beneath the flooring. If the odors appear to be coming from surfaces, the particles might have embedded into a porous material. In some cases we recommend sealing those surfaces to prevent the odors from continuously vaporizing.
Smoky smells might be coming from household or personal contents. SERVPRO employs Fireline’s Ultrasonic Cleaning Process, using high-frequency sound waves to remove the last bits of foul-smelling debris from intricately detailed items. Packing out odiferous items for treatment can lower that risk of enduring fire stench.
HVAC systems and ductwork can contain smelly debris that then spread throughout your home. SERVPRO duct cleaning and sealing can eliminate this source of odor. If the unpleasant smells are still bothersome, we consider the use of specialized deodorization equipment like thermal foggers, ozone machines, or hydroxyl generators. These tools rely on chemical reactions to neutralize the odor-bearing particles. At a molecular level, the particles change when these methods are used, effectively eliminating the smell.
SERVPRO of Kitsap County commits to removing all evidence fire damage in your home, including hard to manage odors. Call (360) 373-1290 to request an evaluation of your circumstances today.
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How to Keep Smoke and Soot Damage From Spreading Throughout Your Silverdale Home
SERVPRO of Kitsap County is ready to remove smoke and soot damage from your home.
Preventing Fire Odors Spreading Throughout Your Silverdale Home
Smoke and soot are two of the most problematic effects for your Silverdale residence following a fire. While you might fixate on structural damages and what must get replaced, smoke damage as both sediment and odors can spread far beyond the combustion points. This situation leads to widespread damages throughout your property when the fire itself might have remained contained in a specific area. The fast response of our professionals can help to limit the spread of these effects to make cleanup and restoration a more efficient and effective process.
Fire damage in Silverdale may often get mistaken as exclusively structural concerns or residues that can come to rest on surfaces throughout your home, but odors are equally challenging to remove and restore. In truth, without professional restoration equipment and expertise, smoke odors can persist in your home long after the other effects have gotten cleaned and restored. Our SERVPRO team has several effective tactics to prevent the spread of odor throughout your home and to remove it where it gets found.
From the time that our team arrives at your home, we undertake a full inspection of the property to determine all affected areas and establish barriers to prevent odors from spreading further through the cleanup and debris removal processes. Physical containment barriers such as thick plastic sheeting get installed both to reduce the spread of odors and prevent particulates and smoke residue from moving freely around the property as well.
Once barriers are in place, our SERVPRO professionals set up machines like our hydroxyl generators that can work to deodorize open areas and also works to reduce the presence of damaging particles and debris in the air with its HEPA filter. Our team also utilizes thermal fogging machines that can penetrate soft materials and also deodorize open areas to eliminate smoke odors permanently.
While many decisions must get made following fire damage to your home, our SERVPRO of Kitsap County rapid response team is a wise one. We have comprehensive solutions to make fire damage “Like it never even happened.” Give us a call today at (360) 373-1290.
Read more about Silverdale here.
Avoid Delays in Poulsbo When Dealing With a Fire Damage Remediation Situation
Fire damage cleanup is a necessity after a fire. Contact our certified SERVPRO team to make it "like it never even happened."
Fire Debris Removal for Your Poulsbo Home
Structure fires that occur in Poulsbo homes can leave behind a considerable mess for homeowners and other occupants of the property to face. While many seek out the assistance of professional restoration services like ours, they still attempt to take care of specific tasks like debris removal on their own. There are substantial risks and potential hazards that exist in charred remnants of a structure fire, and the cleanup and removal of these elements should get handled by highly trained professionals like our response team.
Fire damage in Poulsbo can present itself in many ways after the flames have gotten extinguished in your home. While insurance policies typically cover this process, your agent is going to want assurances that the work gets performed by competent professionals that have the tools and resources to restore the property entirely. Our SERVPRO team works closely with many of the major and local insurance companies to offer effective communication between our departments for efficient production on your damaged home.
Debris cleanup can be necessary throughout the property. Our professionals work to not only clean up this mess but help in other ways like dismantling damaged structural elements and moving damaged items and contents to our facility for focused cleaning and deodorization efforts. While cleanup and material removal occurs, our SERVPRO team also utilizes our advanced equipment like hydroxyl generators and air scrubbers to catch soot, smoke residue, ash, dust, and other potential particulates from the environment.
It is important to handle this preliminary step in the restoration of your fire-damaged home as quickly as possible. Contaminants and hazards present on the property from the fire can persist until cleanup completes, providing a continual threat to occupants and skilled workers that enter the home.
While structure fires can be traumatic events for a homeowner, finding the right professional assistance can take the weight off your shoulders and place it into competent hands capable of restoring your home entirely. Our SERVPRO of Kitsap County rapid response team is available 24/7 by calling (360) 373-1290.
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When Should You Change Smoke Alarm Batteries?
Test your smoke alarm on a monthly basis regardless of the power source
Some smoke alarms contain batteries that should be changed every year. Others have long-life 10-year batteries or are hardwired to the electricity in your home. The following methods can help you determine the frequency with which you need to replace smoke alarm batteries.
Check the Power Source
There are three common fire alarm power sources:
- Replaceable nine-volt batteries
- Non-replaceable 10-year lithium long-life batteries
- Hardwired alarms with back-up batteries
Check the configuration of an alarm to identify the battery type. It is important to know which power source all of the alarms in your home use. Maintain fire alarms in every bedroom and outside of each sleeping area in addition to one alarm on each floor of your home, including the basement.
Regularly Test the Alarms
Test each smoke alarm on a monthly basis regardless of the power source. Most alarm units have a test button that you can press to ensure that the alarm is drawing power. If the test function does not work, try replacing the battery or alarm or scheduling repairs for a hardwired system. Do not wait to repair a malfunctioning smoke detector, as this device can save lives in the event of a fire.
Replace the Batteries
You should replace
- Nine-volt batteries every year, and smoke detectors every 10 years
- 10-year long-life lithium detectors every 10 years
- Back-up batteries in hardwired alarms once a year
Maintaining a smoke alarm can help to insure the safety of the residents of your home in the event of a fire. Do not wait for a smoke detector to alert you that it has low power or needs to be replaced. Know the battery type and regularly test alarms to ensure that these devices are in working order. If a fire damages building materials or contents in your home, contact fire damage mitigation and restoration experts located in Poulsbo,WA.
Why Every Tenant Should Consider Renters Insurance
Renters insurance is a must for your personal assets and out of pocket expenses incase of a fire
Renting an apartment can be an ideal living arrangement for many people in Bremerton, WA. Tenants are usually not financially responsible for their residence’s repair requirements and maintenance needs. Some landlords may require every tenant to have a renters insurance policy, but this is not always mandatory. However, every renter should consider obtaining a policy because it provides financial protection in the event of a disaster, such as an apartment fire.
Repairing the Damaged Building
In the event of an apartment fire, your landlord’s property insurance will cover the cost of the building’s repairs and restoration. While the landlord’s assets are insured, protection does not extend to tenants and their personal property.
Replacing Lost Possessions
As a tenant, your personal possessions are your responsibility and will only be insured if you purchase a renters insurance policy. If you do not have insurance and your personal property suffers significant fire damage, you will have to pay out-of-pocket to replacement everything damaged or destroyed, and this could be extremely costly.
What Renter’s Insurance Covers
A renter’s policy provides peace of mind. Many affordable options exist on the market that will protect your financial interests and help you replace personal property in the event of a variety of situations. The specific coverage of every policy differs, but most policies will help tenants replace items damaged or destroyed by the following means:
• Windstorms and hail
• Smoke damage
• Water damage from leaking pipes and overflowing water
Besides helping you replace damaged or stolen property, many renters insurance policies also cover the cost of additional living expenses, such as a hotel room, in the event you are temporarily displaced from the leased property.
A Worthwhile Investment
Renters typically value their possessions but may not take ample time to consider their combined value. In the event of an apartment fire, you could potentially lose all your personal property. Although a professional cleanup and restoration team could possibly repair some of your damaged belongings, it may be extremely costly to replace everything lost. Obtaining a renters insurance policy is the best way to financially secure your personal assets and avoid excessive out-of-pocket expenses.
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Storing Combustible Materials
Fire safety isn’t only talking about when a fire has already started. SERVPRO of Kitsap County wants to help inform people and make aware the crucial and helpful information in regarding storing flammable materials to prevent a situation of a new fire from occurring. Flammable materials mean more than just liquid chemicals, it can be objects that we use in our households for a multitude of different uses and purposes.
Having situations of a surplus of packing boxes that you have stored the wrong spot, be it somewhere that has piping that can occasionally get hot or somewhere close to ignition sources, can lead to those cardboard boxes becoming combustible. Chemicals stored near work areas are another potentially hazard situation as the chance of a flammable incident is higher. We can’t forget to mention that explosion resistant drums and cabinets that have fittings and placement of inert gasses that may contain ingredients that can be reactive and combustible. While it is easier to stock bottles of cleansers and chemicals near our work sites, it is a bad habit that we all need to break. Along with the habit of storing reactive compounds and liquids in flame-resistant containers versus the common shipping container. If you don’t want to pay for various sizes of the flame-resistant containers, it’s recommended to use storage cabinets, which may be a bit more on the pricey side, but keep in mind that it’s better to be safe than sorry. The price of the storing means doesn’t even compare to the cost of cleanup, restoration, repair and rebuild after a fire has happened.
To efficiently lower the possibility of a potential fire, SERVPRO of Kitsap County recommends having the quantity of flammable materials to a smaller size. Just remember that the less storage space needed, and potential fuel sources limited, the better chance you have for not having a fire occur. But if you find yourself having to deal with a fire cleanup, not matter what type of fire it is, call the professional tam at SERVPRO of Kitsap County today to make your house fire loss look and feel ‘Like it never even happened.”
Every year on 4th of July people in the U.S. celebrate Independence Day with family and friends. There are a lot of people who buy fireworks to celebrate our freedom for our country put on a show, or entertainment. Year after year, there tends to be fires due to the way people ignite fireworks or misuse the fireworks. These festive items are dangerous when you don’t use them properly.
In a report from the “Consumer Product Safety Commission,” here are some facts to be aware of the next time that you, a family member or friend are using or around fireworks
- 280 people go to the emergency room on the day of firework due to fireworks injuries.
- In 2013 there was a 15,600 structures and outdoor fires that were started just by fireworks.
When using fireworks:
- follow safety instructions
- keep fireworks away for younger children
- do not drink alcohol while using fireworks due to safety hazards
- & have the proper materials around you to put out the fireworks or fire.
- When firing ‘shooter’ fireworks, take precautions by wearing safety materials that are needed for example googles, fire extinguisher, a bucket of water and a phone nearby to dial 911 in case of an emergency.
SERVPRO of Kitsap County realizes that people will still use fireworks for entertainment, but we suggest to be knowledgeable on how to use them properly, and what to do if a dangerous situation occurs. For more information about how to prevent fire from fire works please visit the link down below : https://www.accuweather.com/en/weather-news/firework-safety-how-to-prevent-injuries-and-potential-fire-hazards/70001997
Have a Happy Fourth of July from SERVPRO of Kitsap County!
Common Causes of Fire Damage
You would be surprised how many fires occur in correlation to household items and activity. We researched and found that the National Fire Protection Association has compiled a list of the frequency of reported fires and their causes. We wanted to share the top reported ones with you for not only something to keep in mind the next time you may be in a situation involving these, but for helpful information as well to prevent a loss in your home.
- Candles: Society uses candles for various reasons, but in the situations of candles being placed where they can easily catch something near it on fire or leaving them unattended or forgotten about has caused a great amount of recorded fires that could have been prevented if the users were more attentive and aware of their surroundings.
- Misuse by Children: Approximately 44,500 fires are started each year by children misusing matches, lighters, fireworks and other fire-starting materials. Adult supervision is always needed when anything involving a flame is being used by children.
- Appliances and Electronics: as you can guess, electronic malfunctions do occur and in some of the most recorded stats were involving cooking equipment, heating equipment, washers and dryers, air conditioners and fans.
- Holiday Related Items: For holidays, there are certain props and materials that we set up and having in our homes that aren’t there year-round. A few examples are Christmas trees, holiday lights and decorations. These can cause an extra possibility of a fire damage to your home with just a small malfunction and having more for a fire to feed on and spread due to having these set up. Make sure all outlets and electrical based items are in full working condition before using.
- Chemicals and Gases: Almost every home has some manner of chemicals or aerosol gases that they use for maintenance, hobbies, or other tasks. When storing gases improperly, it creates the risk and chance that they can spontaneous com-bust and cause a fire to occur.
- Smoking Related Items: Cigarettes and other smoking supplies are something that causes a great deal of fires. With using any of these materials, be conscious of the surroundings and what these materials come into contact with. You never know what a simple cigarette butt can do if not put out fully and properly.
- Weather and Outdoor Elements: This isn’t in relation to a home but is still a factor to be aware about. Mother Nature has a mind of its own and at times, creates a situation for a fire to be sparked. Lightning strikes and potential mishap on dry grass or brush that causes a wildfire is something to always be aware of.
It is imperative to take notice that many of the frequently reported causes of fires are preventable to some degree. It is important to take caution when utilizing anything that could have potential to start a fire. Some of the actions or uses may seem meaningless, such as going to take a shower while cooking using the oven. However, fires often start when we least expect it. It is better to be safe than sorry. If you have had a mishap in your home involving a fire, contact our team at SERVPRO of Kitsap County today to help clean up and restore your home back to preloss condition and make it ‘Like it never even happened.’
Preparations for Home Fires
How do we prevent fires? Are we safe? Preparations in the home in case of a fire can make a world of a difference. Safety can be increased in minor ways around your home and in ways we live in the home.
- make sure too have enough smoke detectors in various rooms inside your home
- Test them at least once a month to make sure they work properly
- Replace the batteries in the detectors at least once a year
- Inform family members on what a smoke detector does and what kind of sound it makes when it goes off.
- Keep items that are flammable at least 3 feet away from items that get HOT.
- Keep matches & lighters out of the reach of children.
- Go over the dangers of matches and lighters with children
- Do not leave candles unattended
- Have an escape plan to take in case of a fire. Go over it with the members of your household at least once a month so everyone knows what to do and where to meet up in case of an emergency.
In case of a fire occurring
- Call 911 right away if a fire occurs, Let the dispatcher know what is going on, how the fire started, your location & if everyone is out of the building.
- Teach everyone to STOP, DROP & ROLL & to cover their face in case they catch fire.
- When going through smoke, get low and move under the smoke towards any available exits.
Recovering from the after math of a fire is a bit of a shock. Let friends & family members know hat everyone involved is safe. Make sure that if anyone is injured, to be taken to the hospital immediately to be treated right away. Stay out of the home until firefighters and authorities clear the area safe to go back in.
SERVPRO of Kitsap County can help with the restoration and clean up of any fire damages that occur to your structure and belongings. We have the space and ability to store any contents in your home in secure and protected containment units until the family is ready for the items to be brought back. If you, a friend, or family member has suffered the loss of a fire, please feel free to call our team any day, at any time at 360-373-1290.
For further information about fires, how to prevent them, or what to do in case of one, please visit the link provided: http://www.redcross.org/get-help/how-to-prepare-for-emergencies/types-of-emergencies/fire/home-fire-preparedness
Fire Extinguisher Safety & Usage
Every building, be it a commercial or residential property, should have at least one fire extinguisher present. Unfortunately a lot of people don’t know what kind of extinguisher they have, what kind they need, or even how to use it. Fires happen without warning so you never know when you will need an extinguisher. When that time comes it can not only save time and money, but potentially lives if used correctly. Remember to always know the instructions and guidelines for your fire extinguisher; there are multiple types of extinguishers that have different purposes and usage protocols. If you don’t know the type of extinguisher you have, be sure to familiarize yourself with it. You want to ensure that not only you, but also your family and/or staff members do the same; know at all times where each extinguisher is located, that they are clearly identifiable, and have easy access in case an emergency.
When the need arises one tip is remember the word PASS. According to the National Fire Protection Association this is the easiest way to remember how to properly operate your extinguisher.
Pull the pin & hold the nozzle, pointing it away from you, & release the locking mechanism.
Aim low & point the extinguisher at the base of the fire.
Squeeze the level slowly and evenly.
Sweep the nozzle from side-to-side.
Annually check on your fire extinguishers, making sure that they are up to date and not expired. Remember to do routine fire drills with your family and/or employees to keep them aware of emergency procedures in case of a fire. Teach your family and employees how to properly use the on hand extinguishers.
Before purchasing a fire extinguisher, visit NFPA.org to understand which type of extinguisher is right for your property.
If your structure has experienced a fire, please do not try to clean up any of the damage yourself. Attempting to clean smoke and soot damage without being properly trained can cause permanent damage to the building and contents. Our crew members at SERVPRO of Kitsap County are trained and experienced in fire, smoke, and soot damage cleanup. We have the necessary tools and products to even clean up fire extinguisher residue! We will get the job done right, so remember: when in need, think orange & green!
Time Effects After A Fire & What We Have For It
Property losses where contents are affected can be distressing. Personal items hold irreplaceable value. At SERVPRO of Kitsap County we understand this and do our best to save and preserve as many of your belongings as possible. We can help you measure the damage to your contents and create a strategy for our team of technicians to help get your contents and structure back to preloss condition. Fires cause substantial damage to homes and their contents; but keep in mind that the "after the fire" actions can cause more damage than the fire itself. It’s important to take instant and appropriate actions.
Fires can cause direct damage by heat and combustion and smoke damage can affect virtually everything in your home. SERVPRO of Kitsap County will evaluate the contents in every room to conclude whether they need to be replaced or can be successfully restored to preloss condition. Cost, sentimental value, and antique/historical value are all considerations. In many cases, if items have not been damaged directly the fire or by excessive heat they don’t need to be discarded and can be restored using our environmentally-friendly cleaning products, or our new FIRELINE ultrasonic system.
Soot can start to damage contents within just a few days by chemical reactions that take place on deposited surfaces, for example: smoke can etch brass or copper in 24 hours. Also keep in mind that the type and amount of particles and chemicals in smoke varies depending on what is burning, how much oxygen is available, and the burn temperature. Which confirms that time is of the essence, so dealing with soot promptly is crucial to reducing content damage. Ventilation and air filtration are used during the on-site restoration to minimize re-contamination and maintain a healthy environment. Restored contents are returned to the property once the restoration process is complete. Documents or photographs affected by water, mold, and have gone through fire damage can sometimes be dried out and salvaged, or sent to our corporate headquarters for complete document restoring measures.
Our franchise recently underwent a remodel and added a FIRELINE restoration cleaning system to assist our technicians with restoring damaged contents better and faster. This addition opened up a variety of contents that we can restore to preloss conditions and it has helped us to be able to service more of our customers and their contents to a higher ability, now setting a new standard for us to exercise and show what truly the best of our ability is.
FIRELINE products and the entire system is specifically intended to deal with the many variables encountered in contents restoration and are known for their performance and reliability. FIRELINE cleaning equipment is built to the highest quality standards utilizing the latest improvements in ultrasonic wave sweep technology and all segments are made from 100% stainless steel for ultimate durability. Our 5 station production line provides our technicians with greater cleaning capabilities and unrivaled speed of production.
Smoke Alarms Save Lives
Smoke alarms play a vital role in saving lives, and when properly installed, can reduce the risk of fire injury in half.
The National Fire Protection Association recommends smoke alarms be installed in every bedroom, outside all sleeping quarters and in every level of the house. Business owners should consult the local Fire Marshall to ensure specific building fire codes and smoke detector requirements are met.
Smoke alarms work best when paired with a fire escape plan. A plan allows your family, employees or clients to escape quickly and safely in an emergency situation.
Review the following tips regarding smoke detector installation and maintenance. For more on emergency preparedness, contact your local SERVPRO Franchise Professionals.
- Install smoke alarms on every level of the home, including the basement.
- Smoke alarms should be installed away from the kitchen to prevent false alarms. Generally, they should be at least 10 feet from a cooking appliance.
- Test smoke alarms at least once a month using the test button.
- Replace batteries in all smoke alarms at least once a year. If an alarm “chirps,” the battery is low and should be replaced right away.
- Replace all smoke alarms when they are 10 years old.
Just the Facts: Smoke Alarms
- 3 out of 5 fire deaths occur in homes with no smoke alarms or when the alarms or not working.
- Smoke alarm failures usually result from missing, disconnecting, or dead batteries.
- More than ½ of home fire deaths result from fires in which no smoke alarms are present.
- The risk of dying in a home fire is cut in half with working smoke alarms.
The Behavior of SMOKE
A fire loss can result in complex damages because of the unique behavior of smoke. A trained professional should survey the loss site to determine the extent to which fire, smoke, heat, and moisture impacted building materials and contents.
Your local SERVPRO Franchise Professionals know smoke can penetrate various cavities within the structure, causing hidden damage and odor. Their knowledge of building systems helps them investigate how far smoke damage may have spread. Here are some fats you may not know about smoke:
- 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.
The Different Types of Smoke
There are 2 types of smoke-wet and dry. As a result, there are different types of soot residue after a fire. Before restoration begins, a SERVPRO Franchise Professional will test the soot to determine which type of smoke damage occurred. The Cleaning procedures will then be based on the information identification 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 therefor smoke rises.
- Protein Fire Residue – Produced by evaporation of material rather than from a fire
Virtually invisible, discolors paints and varnishes, extreme pungent odor.
- Fuel Oil Soot – Furnace Puff Backs
While “puff backs” can create havoc for homeowners, SERVPRO Franchise Professionals can, in most cases, restore the contents and structure quickly.
- Other Types – Tear gas, fingerprint powder and fire extinguisher residue.
Special loss situations require special care. SERVPRO Franchise Professionals are trained to handle even the toughest of losses.
10 Key Fire Safety Tips
According to the U.S. fire loss clock, a fire department responded to a fire every 23 seconds. Structure fires were reported every 65 seconds. Tragically, fires claimed an average of 9 lives per day.
Though some fires are unavoidable acts of nature or unpredictable accidents, many fires in the home and workplace are avoidable. The following tips, can help reduce the likelihood of a fire in your home or business.
1. Watch your cooking. Stay in the kitchen if you are frying, grilling or broiling food. Never allow young children around the stove or oven, especially if they are not closely attended.
2. Give space heaters space. Keep space heaters at least 3 feet from anything that is flammable.
3. Smoke outside. If you must smoke inside, have a sturdy deep ashtray. Never smoke in bed.
4. Keep matches and lighters out of reach. Keep matches and lighters in high cabinets, preferably under a child lock.
5. Inspect electrical cords. Replace cords that are cracked, damaged, have broken plugs or have loose connections.
6. Be careful when using candles. Keep candles at least one foot from anything that can burn. Blow them out before you leave the room or go to sleep.
7. Have a fire escape plan. Make a fire escape plan and practice it at least twice a year.
8. Install smoke alarms. Install alarms on every level of your office of home and inside bedrooms. Interconnect them so they all sound at once.
9. Test smoke alarms. Test alarms at least once a month. Replace batteries once per year or as needed.
10. Install sprinklers. Sprinklers can help maintain and sometimes even extinguish fires, giving your local fire department a better chance of saving your property.
What to do Until Help Arrives: Fire & Smoke Damage
Fire and smoke damage can be devastating to homes and businesses. Thankfully, SERVPRO can help put back together the pieces and help make it "like it never even happened."
When dealing with fire and smke damage, just like any other type of damage, there are a few things to keep in mind. Here are some helpful do's and don'ts to remember:
- Limit movement within the home or business. A lot of movement or stir in the affected area can cause soot particles to embed themselves in items such as carpets or upholsterys.
- Keep your hands clean at all times. Soot on your hands can leave residue on verything you touch. his can cause further damage to woodwok, walls and upholster.
- Place dry, colorfast towels or old linens on rugs, carpets, or any high traffic areas to avoid tracking to soot through the home or business.
- If electricity is off, empty the freezer and refrigerator COMPLETELY, and keep the doors ajar. This will prevent an odor from accumluating.
- Wipe soot from chrome on kitchen or bathroom appliances.
- If the heat is off, pour RV antifreeze into sinks, toilet bowls and holding tanks to avoid freezing pipes and or other fixtures.
- Remember to clean BOTH sides of leaves on house plants, not just the one.
- Change the HVAC filter, but leave the system off until a trained professional comes and inspects/checks the system.
- Tape double layers of cheesecloth over air registers to stop particles of soot from getting in or out of the HVAC system.
- Attempt to wash any walls or painted surfaces yourself. SERVPRO professionals have special equiptment and cleaners that will safely and thouroughly remove any soot.
- Attempt to shampoo your carpets or furniture. A SERVPRO professional will be able to clean such items without cause further embedding of soot particles.
- Attempt to clean any electrical appliances.
- Consume any food or beverage that may have been close to the fire. THey may be contaminated and make you sick!
- Turn on ceiling fixtures. This causes a stir in the air that may move around soot and make it more difficult to clean the affected areas. Try to keep the air as still as possible.
- Send garments to the dry cleaner. Improper cleaning may set in smoke odor. SERVPRO has some great contacts for vendors that handle garment cleaning specific to fire damage.
Remember, there are things you can do when facing fire damage. Call SERVPRO right away to get the help you need, but try these things on the list until help arrives.