Recent Fire Damage Posts
Fire Damage: How It Affects Electrical Wiring in Your Home or Business
No matter how bad the fire damage may be, your local experts at SERVPRO of Rutherford County are ready to help you immediately when you need us!
If your home or business experiences a fire, the last thing you want to worry about is the electrical wiring and cables. Unfortunately, this is something that you will need to deal with as part of the fire damage restoration process. Electrical wiring can be damaged by high heat, smoke, and soot from a fire, and can cause dangerous situations if not repaired properly. In this blog post, we will discuss how fire damage affects electrical wiring and what you need to do to restore it safely.
In modern-day homes, you will most likely run into two types of electrical wiring. Copper is the most common type and is found in most homes built before 1990. Aluminum wiring was more popular in homes built from the 1960s to the 1980s, and is now less common due to its tendency to overheat and spark fire damage.
Copper melts at 1984°F, and the temperature of a house fire can reach temperatures as high as 3000°F-3500°F.
However, the real problem when it comes to electrical fire damage is the plastic insulation and jacketing that surrounds the wires and electrical cables. These are typically designed to survive temperatures up to 194°F, which is well below average temperatures in a house fire.
So as the temperature of a house fire rises, the plastic begins to expand, stretch out, and melt. This non-conductive plastic coating is meant to prevent wires from touching each other and causing a spark or short-circuit. However, once the coating is melted, it can no longer serve its purpose, and wires can easily touch each other, creating a dangerous spark.
This is why your local fire restoration experts at SERVPRO of Rutherford County carefully assess property damage to determine how hot the fire could have become in different areas of your home. This way, our fire repair experts can be sure to remove exactly what is needed.
In addition to the fire itself, smoke from a fire can also cause damage to electrical wiring. Smoke contains soot and other debris that can coat the wiring and insulation, causing it to deteriorate over time due to smoke's naturally acidic nature.
That is why our trained fire restoration technicians make sure to carefully clean up all smoke damage after a fire because damage may occur much later on.
If your home or business has been affected by a fire, our technicians are ready to respond immediately.
Call today! (615) 849-9794
Tips to Stay Safe during Fire Damage: SERVPRO of Rutherford County
No matter how serious your property damage may be, SERVPRO of Rutherford County is your local expert for restoring your home or business.
It's that time of year again - fire season in Rutherford County, TN, and surrounding areas. Between February and May, the weather gets hotter and drier, while the risk of house fires rises. A fire may start from a variety of sources, ranging from a faulty wire to an overloaded outlet to a kitchen mishap to a bonfire left unattended. It's critical to know how to react quickly and effectively if your home catches fire.
Here's What You Need To Know If A Fire Starts:
The first line of defense against a house fire is to know how to use the proper fire extinguisher for the situation. This simple procedure can help save lives and hundreds of thousands of dollars in property damage. If the fire spreads uncontrollably, evacuate immediately and stay away, then call 9-1-1. Leave all of your belongings where they are and save yourself and your loved ones.
If your clothing ignites, remember the old adage: Stop, Drop, and Roll.
It's critical to utilize the stairs if you live in a building with elevators in case of a fire. The elevator electrical system may be damaged by a fire, causing the shaft to operate like a chimney and rapidly fill up with deadly fumes.
Doors may be used to your advantage in a fire, potentially saving your life. If the doorknob or handle is hot, don't open it. If you can't exit through the primary route, look for another option. Do not open any doors that are warm to the touch.
Close any doors that might obstruct your exits, lay a wet towel beneath the doors, and call the fire department or 9-1-1 if flames, heat, or fire block your avenues of escape. Tell them exactly where you are so they can find you.
If you're near a window that you can't use as an escape, open it and wave a brightly colored cloth or use your phone flashlight to signal for help.
What To Do After a Fire
After a fire, it is important to contact a professional fire damage restoration company like SERVPRO of Rutherford County. We have the training, experience, and equipment to properly restore your home - "Like it never even happened."
If you try to clean up the fire damage yourself, you could end up making the situation worse both in your home and with your insurance company's process.
Trust the experts, and call today!
4 Ways To Prevent Candle Fires
Candles are a common cause of fires, particularly when an open flame is left unattended.
Reducing the Risk of Candle Fire
Candles are a common cause of fires, particularly when an open flame is left unattended. The best way to prevent a candle fire is to use a lighting or fragrance alternative without an open flame. Here are four tips for reducing the risk of a candle starting a fire at a residence in Blackman, TN.
1. Use Open-Flame Alternatives
No matter why you use candles, you can probably find a safer alternative. LED candles can be ideal substitutes for decorative or mood lighting purposes. If you enjoy a scent, consider using a candle warmer with your favorite wax candles or other fragrance alternatives such as reed diffusers.
2. Don't Light Candles In a Bedroom
Fires are prone to start whenever people light open flames in a bedroom. Two of the most common fire causes are lit candles and cigarettes. Do not burn anything in a room where you run the risk of falling asleep and leaving a flame unattended.
3. Blow Out Candles Before Leaving a Room
It is very easy to forget that a candle is burning before leaving a room. In addition to the risk of candle fire posed by an unattended open flame, a lit candle can endanger children or pets and pose an increased risk of accidental fire. If you light candles at the dinner table, make sure to blow them out when you clear the table.
4. Keep Combustibles at a Safe Distance
Keep any combustible materials such as bedding, curtains, papers, or upholstery at least 12 inches away from a lit candle. Most candle fires start when a flammable material makes accidental contact with an open flame.
These measures can prevent a candle fire from starting at a residence in Blackman, TN. If a home sustains damage as a result of a fire, contact a restoration service that specializes in fire and smoke cleanup.
Altenatives to Traditional Candles
If you prefer the scent of a real wax candle, a candle warmer may be an excellent choice.
Consider Some Of These Trendy Ideas
If you want to try something in place of a traditional wax-burning candle, there are many new and exciting candle alternatives. Since traditional candles use an open flame, they pose a risk of fire. They may not be the best option if you are not able to keep a close eye on them, or if you have pets or small children that could knock them over. If you are looking for a safer way to create the same ambiance, consider some of these trendy ideas:
1. Candle Warmer If you prefer the scent of a real wax candle, a candle warmer may be an excellent choice. There are two types of warmers that work with candles in glass containers. Some warm up the base of the candle, while others use a hot lamp above the candle. Either way, the wax heats up and begins to melt, releasing an aroma in the same way a lit candle does. With these flameless candle alternatives, you get to use a real candle without the wick.
2. Scented LED Candle
These battery-operated candles light up. Some flicker like the real thing, only without the risk of causing a candle fire. If you choose one with real, scented wax on the outside, they may keep your home smelling fresh even when they are not lit. Some of these come with a remote and can cycle through a variety of colors.
3. Flameless Luminary This unique device consists of a battery-operated base with a light. Reminiscent of a Christmas luminaria, a decorative shade fits into the base and lights up in the pattern displayed on the outside. They are offered in a variety of colors, designs, and scents to match just about any decor.
With so many candle alternatives on the market, you do not need to risk leaving a burning candle unattended. However, if you do experience a candle fire in Christiana, TN, a professional fire restoration company can help restore your home to normal.
Christmas Tree Fire Prevention
Christmas Tree Fire Prevention
Christmas is here in Murfreesboro, TN and fully loaded with the wonderful sights, sounds, and aromas! Music fills the house with the melodic joys of years gone by and those to come. Traditionally, a Christmas tree is the centerpiece of the family’s holiday. The tree is colorful and adorned with memories and beauty that we wait all year to see. If your family purchases live trees, the fragrance of Christmas fills the room with holiday cheer. The gifts underneath say that family is the real present of the season. SERVPRO of Rutherford County celebrates that treasure with you, because we believe that family is everything!
The Fire Damage Threat
The National Fire Prevention Association (nfpa.org) states that Christmas trees are the cause of an average of 160 house fires per year. The trees and needles are rich with highly flammable oils that can combust easily. Couple that dynamic with the oxygen in the large surface area, and porous structure of the tree, and you have a beautiful natural threat to your home without the proper caution and care. Additionally, short circuits in cheaply made Christmas lights are capable of igniting a fire that can quickly get out of control and cause real fire damage to your home and family. Even LED lights can get hot enough to catch fire.
Christmas Tree Safety Measures to Prevent Fire
If you enjoy live Christmas trees, make sure to take the appropriate safety measures to limit the possibilities of home fire damage this season. Keep your tree appropriately watered as the dryer the condition, the more flammable. Purchase quality lights and make sure that they are safely connected to each other and the electrical source. Install trees away from wood burning fireplaces, candles, heaters, and stoves. Also, keep your trees as far away as possible from hent vents. Turn off the lights when you sleep or are away from home. Finally, keep a fire extinguisher in the rooms where your trees are displayed.
Rock Around that Tannenbaum
At SERVPRO of Rutherford County, we hope your season is truly joyous and peaceful. In the hustle and bustle of the season, remember to be present and fully take in every sweet moment. As you enjoy your family and friends, rest in the fact that you took every precaution to protect what is most important to you this holiday season! We wish all our valued SERVPRO of Rutherford County customers and friends a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
The Top 3 Grill Cleaning Tips
Cleaning your grill can help you reduce the risk of a grease fire.
Grill Cleaning Tips
A few simple grill maintenance measures can significantly reduce the risk of a grease fire. Follow these three grill cleaning steps to safely enjoy food cooked over fire.
1. Clean Up After Every Session
Start by turning off any remaining food or grease while the fire is still on. Maintain a fire for long enough to eliminate any residue on the grates and then turn off the grill. Use a grill brush to scrape fat or food off the grates.
2. Remove Grates for Deep Cleaning
Wait until the grill is cool before removing the grates. Clean grates with water and a brush or sponge. Depending on the material, you may also be able to use grease-cutting soap. Make sure it is safe to expose the grates to water or soap. If you use a gas grill, turn off and disconnect the propane tank prior to grill cleaning. You can cover the heating elements with foil to keep these parts protected while cleaning the hood cover and inside walls.
3. Dump the Drip Pan
Be sure to regularly dump the contents of the drip pan on your grill into the trash. This component collects grease and other food residues that can be likely to ignite if exposed to fire.
In addition to following these grill cleaning steps, you should maintain basic fire safety standards while grilling. Never grill on a covered porch or patio, use the grill at a safe distance from structures, and do not leave the grill unattended. You should also avoid storing a portable grill while it is still hot, as this can increase the risk of fire. Keep a Type K fire extinguisher on hand in case a grease fire starts and contact the fire department. If you need to clean up and repair fire damage, hire a mitigation and restoration service located in Milton, TN.
Remember To PASS When Seconds Matter
Remembering to PASS, which stands for PULL, AIM, SQUEEZE, and SWEEP.
When the piercing, incessant beep of a smoke detector wakes you in the middle of the night, what do you do? What if an unattended towel on the stove causes a kitchen fire; how would you react? How about that gentle summer breeze blowing your curtain across a lit candle; are you prepared? A working smoke detector is a critical component in any home; however, having a portable fire extinguisher can act as an invaluable tool in helping your family escape the blaze.
Remember To PASS
Remembering to PASS, which stands for PULL, AIM, SQUEEZE, and SWEEP, could be key when seconds count. This simple mnemonic aide contains four easy steps to putting out a fire with an extinguisher:
1. PULL out the pin. That action releases the locking mechanism and prepares the canister to be activated.
2. AIM toward the base. Hold the canister low to maintain a stable grasp, and aim the nozzle at the base of the fire.
3. SQUEEZE the handle of the fire extinguisher to activate and project the contents.
4. SWEEP the foam using steady left-to-right motions until the fire is eliminated.
Preparation Is Key
When you are confronted with flames threatening your family and home, it is easy to become paralyzed with fear. While you try not to dwell on the “what ifs” in life, preparation is vital due to the daily occurrence of home fires in Blackman, TN. Owning one is not enough; you also have to know how to use an extinguisher effectively.
Know When To Retreat
In the event the blaze cannot be contained, retreat to safety and contact your local emergency number.
Home fires are frightening, and while working fire alarms and a correctly maintained fire extinguisher are invaluable tools that can offer your family lifesaving time when every second counts, sometimes they are not enough.
Blackman, TN, has fire restoration services available to homeowners. They cannot replace the irreplaceable, but they can help you tackle the fire damage and navigate the restoration process to get your family back home faster.
Brush Up Your Skill on Cleaning Your Grill
Your home’s safety is worth an occasional grill cleaning.
Steps For Grill Cleaning
With summer in Murfreesboro, TN it’s impossible to keep your mind off delicious grilled food. With use, the grill will build up residue. It needs proper maintenance to keep your cooking safe from fire and your food delicious with flavor. Knowing the steps for grill cleaning will protect your grill, food and home.
1. Gather the Necessary Cleanup Items
For this procedure, you will need gloves, a specialty grilling brush, a trash can, a bucket of hot, soapy water, paper towels and aluminum foil.
2. Prepare the Grill for Cleaning
All dials should be inspected to make sure they are off. If the grill is propane, the tank needs to be disconnected before grill cleaning. You should glove up before opening the grill.
Remove the grates and soak them in a bucket of soapy, hot water. After removing the grates, place aluminum foil over the exposed components for their protection.
3. Brush the Walls
Using the grill brush, scrub the walls of the grill’s interior. Once you finish scrubbing, wipe the walls with a moist paper towel. This step removes dangerous buildup that could cause a grease fire.
4. Drop the Drip Pan in With the Grate After Emptying
Remove the drip pan next. After it has been turned over and emptied into a trash can, put it in the bucket with the grates.
5. Finish Cleaning the Soaked Components
After removing all grates and the drip pan from the bucket, scrub them with the brush before rinsing them off with a hose.
6. Remove the Foil and Reassemble the Grill
The foil is no longer needed and should be removed. Now, use the grill brush to dust the grill elements lightly. Once you are done brushing, return the pan and grates to their original spots. The exterior can be wiped with stainless steel wipes or soapy water if a clean look is desired.
Your home’s safety is worth an occasional grill cleaning. In the event of a grill fire, the damage can be remedied by a professional fire restoration company. Regular grill maintenance, however, reduces the likelihood of a fire ruining your summer backyard gatherings.
3 Surprising Things You Can Do To Reduce the Smell of Cigarette Smoke
If you are dealing with home deodorization need call professional restoration services.
Ways To Reduce The Smell Of Cigarette Smoke
Home deodorization in Eagleville, TN, can be a challenge, especially if you or a family member smokes. Whether you are getting ready to host friends or family members or you just want to be ready for unexpected company, here are a few surprising things you can do to reduce the smell of cigarette smoke in your furniture and carpets and throughout your home.
1. Use Vinegar
Vinegar might not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of cigarette removal, but it’s very good at removing stubborn scents from a variety of fabrics. If you have pillow cases, blankets, or decorative throws that are saturated with the scent of your cigarettes, throw them in the wash with two cups of vinegar. Then put them through a regular drying cycle. You’ll be surprised at how fresh-smelling they are when you pull them out. If the smell of cigarette smoke lingers, wash them once more to get rid of it completely.
2. Sprinkle Baking Soda on Furniture
Baking soda is a well-known air-freshening tool. It’s frequently used in refrigerators to soak up the smell of old, rotten food. You can also use it to absorb the smell of stale cigarette smoke. For home deodorization purposes, sprinkle baking soda on all soft furniture surfaces in your home. It won’t work very well on leather, but it should work great on fabric furniture. After sprinkling generously across all furniture, use your hands to smooth it out and make it disappear into the fabric. After letting it sit for at least 10 minutes, vacuum it up. You can use the same technique on carpets, rugs and drapes.
3. Repaint or Replace
In some cases, cigarette odor is so pervasive that it can’t be removed with simple cleaning methods. In this case, may want to consider repainting your home or replacing old, smelly carpets if the scent bothers you enough.
If you have tried the above steps and you still have an odor, try calling professional restoration services. They have the tools and expertise necessary to handle your home deodorization needs.
5 Tips on How to Prevent Fire Damage to Your Home
SERVPRO of Rutherford County can handle any size fire loss in the Murfreesboro area.
For the average homeowner, the very mention of fire damage is enough to strike terror into anyone’s heart.
According to FEMA, a fire can become life-threatening in just two minutes. In as little as five minutes, your home could be engulfed in fire.
When it comes to residential or commercial fire damage, fire safety is one thing that you can’t put on the back burner. Taking the proper steps on how to prevent fire damage can go a long way in saving your belongings and avoiding costly repairs.
5 Tips on How to Prevent Fire Damage
1. Observe Proper Installation of Fire Alarms
Fire alarms and smoke detectors are your home’s first line of defense. Early detection of smoke will not only save your property but most importantly, your life as well.
While the installation of smoke detectors has become a law, there are still many properties that don’t install their fire prevention systems properly. One of the first things to ensure is the proper installation of your fire alarm system. Larger buildings should have multiple fire alarms on each level.
As a general rule, you should follow these guidelines for a proper fire alarm installation:
- Avoid placing the detector in recessed ceilings
- Don’t install the detector near vents, doors, or fans
- Install the device 2 feet from any corner
- Install it 10 feet away from the stove
- Install it 2 feet away from any lighting fixture
It’s always a good idea to test your fire alarm system once every month. Batteries should be replaced at least twice a year.
2. Watch Out for Candle Burns
A little burning candle never really caused any real damage, right?
Well, not really!
According to the National Fire Protection Association, candles caused 2% of home structure fires. Any source of fire poses a risk to your property’s safety.
Candles are great for setting the mood and providing a nice scent for the room but they shouldn’t be left unattended. Also, make sure that you place the candles on flat surfaces and away from drapes, pets, and children.
3. Inspect Home Appliances and Lights
Inspection of your home appliances and lights should be a part of regular home maintenance.
Make sure that your wires, plugs, and bulbs are not damaged. Just by having pets or using the vacuum can cause damage to your appliance wires. Once damaged wires are plugged, it might cause the appliance or light fixture to catch fire. Always keep your wires and cords organized and refrain from placing them under a rug or between a piece of furniture and a wall.
Double checking your appliances before plugging will help prevent fire damage in your home.
4. Pay Attention to Cooking and Heating Equipment
Aside from open flames, cooking and heating equipment are also primary causes of fires in the home.
For starters, you should make it a habit to keep your stove and oven clean. You should pay more attention to cleaning the grease around your stovetop since this can lead to a grease fire. Clean the vents, filters, and grease traps to prevent grease fires. Also, you should make it a point to keep flammable items away from the stove.
As for your heating equipment, make sure that it is installed and maintained by a qualified professional. Also, you need to check the heating device for potential damage on a regular basis.
5. Have Fire Extinguishers at the Ready
The worst thing that can happen once a fire breaks out is having no way to extinguish it. If you don’t have one already, it’s important that you secure a fire extinguisher for your home.
However, just having a fire extinguisher is not enough.
Make sure that you inform every family member where to retrieve the fire extinguisher. On top of that, everyone should know how to properly use the extinguisher in case a fire breaks out.
Get Restoration Professionals to Help You
If you’re unlucky and weren’t able to prevent damage to your home, your best bet is to work with a company that specializes in fire damage restoration.
Restoration is often cheaper than replacing the damaged areas. Plus, the former solution is a lot faster as well. For your fire restoration needs in Rutherford County, Murfreesboro, and Smyrna, don’t hesitate to call SERVPRO of Rutherford County.
How To Use Candles Safely
If you want to use candles, consider flameless options.
There is nothing quite like the flickering flame of a lit candle, particularly if you are trying to be romantic. Unfortunately, they can be dangerous as well as romantic. A candle fire can very quickly cause massive destruction.
There are some general rules you should always obey when using candles:
- Keep clothes, hair and cloth away from the open flame
- Never leave a burning candle in a vacant room
- Don't use candles under shelves
- Always place them on a heat-resistant surface
These rules may seem basic, but a lot of damage can occur if they are ignored. According to the NFPA, approximately 8,200 fires are started by candles every year, and many of these destroy homes. If you have a fire, you may need a smoke cleanup and fire damage remediation company in Blackman, TN.
Some people think that jarred candles are safer, but this is not the case. When they burn down to the bottom, the wax can superheat the glass. This causes the jar to explode. If you use jarred candles, make sure you do not burn them below the safety point (about 2 inches above the bottom of the candle.) Not only can they cause a candle fire, but the exploding glass is also dangerous.
If you want to use candles, consider flameless options. These are battery-operated versions that flicker just like the real ones. This can save you and your home. Flameless candles even come in scented versions that use fans and essential oils to provide the same fragrant effects. They are child and pet safe even if they are knocked over. The only thing you have to worry about is changing the batteries.
Candles can be beautiful, but it is always best to remember that they are an open flame. Candle fire incidents cost homeowners thousands of dollars every year. Taking simple safety precautions can save your home.
The Optimal Number of Fire Alarms in Your Home
Man installing a smoke alarm in a Murfreesboro, TN home
How Many Alarms Should You Have In Your Home
A fire is certainly a scary thing. It has the ability to destroy your home in Murfreesboro, TN, and it poses a serious threat to the safety of your family. For these reasons, it makes sense to arm yourself with a few tools of fire prevention. Every home should have at least one fire extinguisher, and probably one for each floor. A fire alarm is crucial, too. This can provide a quick alert to everyone that something is amiss and that it might be time to get out of the home. It can save lives and property. For your home to be adequately protected, you should consider how many alarms are optimal.
An Alarm on Every Floor
If your home fire alarm system is not interconnected, you should put an alarm on every floor at the minimum. You want everyone in the house to be able to hear it when it sounds. For extra safety, alarms should be placed in rooms where fires are more likely to occur such as kitchens. Finally, it is beneficial to place alarms in every bedroom for the following reasons:
- People might not hear a distant alarm when they are sleeping
- Individuals in one part of the home can alert others
- People are most vulnerable at night
A quick notice of an incipient fire is one protection against fire damage. The quicker a fire can be put out, the less devastation a fire will cause.
The Importance of a Professional Cleanup
While a fire alarm can save lives and reduce damage, even the smallest fire causes an array of odors and other problems. Cleaning up after a fire is difficult and requires a certain level of expertise. The services of a quality fire remediation franchise is the surest way to get your home back in order again and to remove smoke damage. Technicians will make sure the home is free of all the problems caused by fire. It is another way to protect your home from the ravages of fire.
Smoke Removal After a Fire
Smoke odor removal in Smyrna, TN
When a fire loss happens, no matter how big or small, the cleanup process often means replacing drywall, carpeting and other materials in your Smyrna, TN, building. Even after everything looks like its back to normal, there may still be lingering effects. A professional fire damage and restoration professional will ensure that proper smoke cleaning and soot removal are completed.
Smoke Removal Process
Unfortunately, smoke damage can last a long time. Along with soot, many of the burned materials produce gases while burning that can penetrate materials without leaving a visible sign of an issue. Removing the residue and odors means cleaning burned items to restore them back to normal. Below are steps taken to make it “Like it never even happened.”
Salvageable Items – Depending on what the belonging is, an array of methods or used to clean items. Oftentimes it will involve pressure washing, scrubbing and disinfecting surfaces.
Air Ducts – Since smoke and soot are in the air, particles can easily make their way into an HVAC system. Cleaning the air ducts is necessary to avoid contaminating other areas of the building and eliminating the problem.
Tackling the Air – Airborne odor requires innovative methods to get rid of. Certified professionals have high-tech tools on-hand to make the interior air fresh again.
Air Cleaning Techniques
To completely remove smoke odor, the smoke cleaning techniques used include:
Air Scrubbing – This involves a HEPA scrubber that removes airborne particles.
Thermal Fogging – A device is used to fill the air with a deodorizer. It creates a chemical reaction with odor molecules to eliminate them. This method does require leaving the property when in use.
Vapor Modification – A mineral oil-based compound is released into the air to combat the odor. It also penetrates affected porous materials.
Ozone Generation – Some types of smoke are harder to eliminate. This method oxidizes molecules via releasing oxygen. It often requires 24 to 48 hours in a controlled environment.
Fires can be an overwhelming experience, even long after the flames are out and repairs are done. Smoke cleaning services can help ensure the problem doesn’t linger.
3 Important Tips for Smoke Alarm Maintenance
Smoke alarm maintenance in a Walterhill, TN
Smoke Alarm Maintenance
When you have a smoke alarm in your Walterhill, TN, home, it’s important to properly maintain the unit. A functional alarm helps you prevent large-scale damage by alerting you to the danger of a house fire in time to call the fire department. Afterward, a local fire restoration service can help with repairs. Here are three important tips for maintaining any alarms located in your home.
1. Regularly Change the Batteries
One way to help keep your smoke detector working so that it can alert you in time to avoid fire damage is to replace the batteries regularly. This should be done at least once a year. Most people choose an easy day to remember, such as daylight savings, on which to change their alarm batteries and inspect the unit.
2. Keep the Unit Clean
Keeping your smoke alarm clean can also help it retain its functionality. In many cases, you can clean the unit at the same time you change the batteries. A damp cloth can be used to carefully wipe off the outside, while compressed air can be used to clean the inside. This is also a good time to check if the unit may need to be replaced.
3. Replace Old Models
If your smoke detector looks to be in poor repair or if it has been in service longer than the recommended usage date, then it’s important to replace the alarm as quickly as possible. On average the lifespan of these devices is around eight years. However, if you experience problems with anyone in your home, it’s a good idea to choose a new unit as well.
Maintaining a smoke alarm by changing the batteries, cleaning it, and replacing it when it is expired is an important part of protecting your home against a fire. A little maintenance now can prevent a disaster in the future.
5 Steps To Take After a Fire
Evacuate the building safely
5 Steps To Take After a Fire
Fires can be frightening and disruptive to your business, but it is important to take the right fire restoration steps to get your business back to preloss condition quickly. Here are five steps to take after a fire.
1. Evacuate the Building
Even if the situation does not look immediately dangerous, fires can escalate quickly and there may be hidden dangers, such as toxic chemicals or smoke inhalation. Once everyone in the building has evacuated to a safe place, you can move on to the next step.
2. Call 9-1-1
Your priority after evacuating should be getting emergency services on the scene so that they can extinguish the fire and treat anyone who may have been injured. The best way to do this is to call 9-1-1. The 9-1-1 operator will be able to contact the fire department, police, ambulance, and any other Smyrna, TN, emergency services you may need.
3. Call Your Insurance Company
Before you can begin the fire restoration process, you will need to file a claim with your fire insurance company. You should contact your insurance company as soon as you safely can after a fire so that they can get the process of settling your claim started.
4. Stay Out of the Building
Structures that have been damaged by the fire may not be safe to enter until repairs have been made. You should wait until an inspection has been performed and you have been given the OK before returning to your fire-damaged building.
5. Clean and Repair Your Property
Even property that has not been damaged by flames may not be usable after a fire due to damage from smoke and water. A professional restoration company can assist you with smoke cleaning, water damage, and other fire cleanup services.
Recovering from a fire can be a traumatic experience. However, you can make the process easier by following the proper fire restoration steps after a loss occurs.
3 Candle Alternatives To Use in Your Home
If you want the true candle experience, your best option is a battery-operated flameless candle
Candles can be an easy way to create an inviting or relaxing atmosphere in your Smyrna, TN, home. Unfortunately, these popular decorative items come with some risk. While you can certainly take steps to use them safely and reduce the likelihood of a fire, there are some candle alternatives that you can use as well.
1. Battery-Operated Candles
If you want the true candle experience, your best option is a battery-operated flameless candle. These are designed to look like traditional candles and often have flickering lights to mimic the appearance of the flame. Along with reducing the risk of fire, these items have the added benefit of lasting much longer than a real candle.
2. Warm Light Bulbs
If you are looking for candle alternatives that provide similar lighting to a candle, then try warm-colored light bulbs. These bulbs give off light that is more yellow than white, resulting in a softer appearance. It can help to create a more comfortable and cozy environment. You can purchase these bulbs for use in ceiling lights or lamps, depending on your preference.
3. Wax Melts, Oils or Diffusers
Another reason that candles are popular in the home is that they come in a variety of scents. Luckily, there are many candle alternatives that can effectively and safely fill your house with a beautiful fragrance. Electric wax and oil warmers use a tray over a small lightbulb to heat the product and spread the scent. Diffusers use water and essential oils to create a scented mist that fills the air.
While you may enjoy using candles, a candle fire can be devastating to your home. In some cases, it can spread quickly and cause large amounts of damage that require the services of a clean up and restoration company. Using alternative items in place of candles can help prevent disasters from happening and keep your home safe.
How to Prevent Fires During the Holidays
Be prepared in case you encounter a fire loss.
Scrumptious dinners, flickering lights, and making merry are all hallmarks of the holiday season. However, this is also the time when your home is at high risk of burning down.
According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), more residential fires happen in the end-of-year period than any other time of the year.
For this reason, fire prevention and safety should be on top of your priority list this holiday season. To help stay safe during this wonderful time of the year, consider the following tips.
Fire Damage Prevention Tips from Restoration Experts
Before the season fully kicks in, have the following fire prevention tips in mind:
1. Pay Attention to Your Festive Decorations
While Christmas trees and decorations are part of the festivities, they are also one of the major causes of holiday fires.
When decorating your house, test all cords and lights to ensure they are working properly. This is especially important if the decorative lights have been in storage for a long time. Faulty products should be disposed of and replaced with new ones. Also, you’ll want to hang the lights with clips instead of nails to reduce the risk of damaging the cords.
Place your Christmas trees (and any other seasonal plants) several feet away from any heat source. Before going to bed or leaving the house, ensure you turn off the decorative lights on the tree. Also, it’s important to water the tree daily to prevent it from being brittle and dry. Dry trees catch fire easily.
And, when the festivities end, get rid of the tree as soon as possible. Don’t leave it to dry out in your garage or shed.
2. Take Cooking Safety Precautions
According to the U.S. Fire Administration, unattended cooking is the leading cause of residential fires. And it’s clear to see why. With all the chaotic holiday preparation, it’s easy to neglect the food cooking on your stoves and oven.
As a rule of thumb, stay in the kitchen until everything is out of the oven or stove. Also, make sure that you invest in fire extinguishers, smoke detectors, and fire sprinklers for your kitchen. If you are planning on deep-frying your holiday turkey, do it outdoors, on a flat surface at least 10 feet from the house.
3. Be Careful with Candles
Candle fires happen the most during the holiday season. To reduce the risk, set the candle several feet away from anything combustible. Also, set the candles on sturdy bases and cover them with hurricane globes.
Don’t leave a burning candle unattended, especially if you have kids and pets. Before going to bed, make sure all the candles are blown out.
If possible, consider other safer alternatives to candles like electric candles.
4. Don’t Forget About Matches and Lighters
An open flame is a serious fire risk when handled improperly. Keep matches, lighters, and other fire-starting materials away from kids. For guests who smoke, create a designated space outdoors where they can smoke and dispose of cigarette butts. It’s recommended to dampen cigarette butts before throwing them in the trash can.
5. Get Your Indoor and Outdoor Fireplaces Inspected
Have your chimney and fireplaces inspected by a professional before using it. This is especially important if you haven’t used them for months. Also, avoid using damp firewood on your fireplaces as they produce smoke which causes choking hazards.
If you are using space heaters to keep your house warm during the winter, make sure that they’re at least three feet away from items that can easily catch fire like clothing, beddings, furniture, and curtains. Unplug the appliance when you are done using it and don’t leave it unattended.
When using outdoor fireplaces, exercise caution. While gathering around the fire pit can be cozy, it can cause serious injuries if handled wrongly. Ensure that everybody is at least three feet from the fire, and other structures more than 10 feet. Be extra cautious during windy days as fire can quickly spread to unintended areas.
Call SERVPRO for Fire Damage Restoration
If you keep the tips in mind, you will be sure to enjoy your holidays with your family and friends without the fear of a fire disaster.
However, in the unfortunate event of fire damage in your home, you’ll need professionals to take care of the disaster. Doing it yourself is risky and time-consuming. At SERVPRO of Rutherford County, we have the right tools and equipment to handle any fire damage regardless of the size.
We Can Restore Your Kitchen After Fire Damage!
We can restore your kitchen after a fire
Kitchen fires in the home can be traumatic. A minor incident with simple smoke damages or a larger blaze can wreak havoc on a home. Once the flames are out, you're likely left with the smell of smoke throughout the home. Water damage from firefighting efforts and a lingering smell that reminds you of the incident can be hard to take. There are several steps to help remove the smell, damage, and negative impact inside your home. We'll help your family return to normal and you can enjoy your home once again.
Many people don't realize that dust, allergens, and other materials circulate through the home via air ducts. Fire-related smells can remain in the ducts long after the flames are put out, leaving a smell of smoke in the entire home. Even with a small kitchen blaze, smoke rises up into the ducts and that smell proves difficult to remove. Professionals can check the entire duct system to see if cleaning them is necessary to regain clean air in your home.
Removing Evidence of Damages
Even the smallest flames can result in smoke damages in the home. You also have the after-effects of using water or fire extinguishers to put out the flames. Those techniques can leave marks that need removal too. Even if the flames were small and you were able to contain them without firefighters, it’s likely there are damages there to remind your family of the traumatic event. Water and fire-related damages are our specialties. We can restore your home, remove the smell and any other fire-related evidence.
After you experience this type of event, always call the professionals. At SERVPRO of Rutherford County, we can remove smoke and flames in your kitchen and the rest of the home if needed. We have experience in removing fire-related damages throughout the area. We provide 24-hour emergency services to ensure that your family can get back into the home as quickly as possible. Our fire restoration team is equipped with everything needed to remove evidence of flames and get you back in your home.
How to Prevent Fires in LaVergne: Tips from Fire Restoration Experts
We're here in your time of need
What type of business do you have?
Is it in any way susceptible to the risk of fire?
If yes, then you definitely need to have a fire precautionary plan for your business premise.
Statistics from the National Fire Prevention Association (NFPA) indicate a rise in the number of non-residential fires over the years. Some of the most common commercial buildings where fires occur include small offices, small buildings, and restaurants.
So how do you prevent these fires?
Fire Prevention: Tips from SERVPRO in LaVergne
Don’t wait until your building catches fire, here are insightful fire prevention tips from experts.
1. Electrical Appliances
Ensure you take the following precautions when it comes to your electrical appliances:
- Most electrical appliances come with recommendations from the manufacturer. You need to follow these instructions to prevent a voltage overload that may result in a fire outbreak.
- Replace frayed power cords. Also, instead of running your power cords under carpets or rags, it’s recommended to use cord protectors.
- To prevent late-night and weekend fires, ensure you unplug appliances such as coffee makers and microwaves at the end of the day or when they are not using the office.
- Appliances that feel exceedingly hot may be faulty and may be a fire hazard. Have them checked or just replace them.
2. Regular Inspections
You may have to call in a fire marshal to inspect areas where chemicals and equipment are stored. The aim for this is to ensure there is enough ventilation in these rooms.
3. Storage of Hazardous Materials
Most of these materials come with the manufacturer’s instructions on how to properly store them. You will also have to conform to the OSHA regulations and ensure you’ve properly marked them.
Efficient Commercial Fire Restoration in LaVergne
It must have been devastating seeing your building burn.
If the disaster has occurred and you don’t what to do next, seek the services of a professional fire restoration company in LaVergne.
At SERVPRO, our main goal is to have your business up and running as soon as possible. It’s time you talked to SERVPRO professionals for your commercial fire restoration needs in LaVergne.
5 Things You Should Know About Commercial Fire Damage
Any amount of fire damage can be devastating for a business, and fire restoration is hard work! After the fire department ensures everything is safe, restoration professionals are the next people who should enter a building that has been damaged by fire, water, flood, sewer backup, or other significant events.
SERVPRO technicians are experts at commercial fire, water, and mold restoration and we will have your business back up and running as quickly as possible. We know that every day spent restoring your commercial building is lost revenue and productivity! We will do the hard work, so you don't have to.
Here are five commercial fire damage restoration tips.
1 Limit activity in the damaged area.
Don't enter a damaged building until the fire department deems it safe. Fire can impact the structural integrity of the building. Firefighters often have to cut holes in the walls, ceilings, and floors to slow the fire and make sure it is completely out.
You should limit any activity in the damaged area to prevent soot and ashes from being embedded into surfaces or spread to other areas of the building. Staying away from the damaged area also helps minimize your exposure to hazardous chemicals and materials like lead, asbestos, bacteria, mold, and other pathogens. Disturbing or spreading these toxins and contaminants can cause further property damage and can cause health problems.
SERVPRO technicians are experts at cleaning up even microscopic bacteria, mold spores, and hazardous chemicals. We use HEPA filters, vacuums, and special chemicals to make sure every area is safe and clean.
2 Removing smoke and soot damage is challenging.
Any fire, large or small, will likely cause smoke damage to walls, ceiling, and other surfaces. Soot is very greasy and can cover the interior of your business, even if the fire was limited to a small area. Smoke can get into the walls, floors, and air ducts, causing the smell to linger long after the fire if it isn't properly treated.
It is essential to hire fire restoration experts that will thoroughly scrub your building of all the soot, smoke, and potentially hazardous chemicals. Improperly cleaning smoke and soot can actually "set" the smells, especially in fabrics and textiles like carpets, upholstery, clothing, and similar items. Additionally, soot residue can contain dangerous chemicals and cancer-causing carcinogens.
3 Cleaning up after fire sprinkler and suppression systems.
It is essential to properly clean and repair any water damage to prevent mold and mildew from growing. Commercial buildings should have fire sprinkler systems, and many modern buildings have fire suppression systems instead of sprinklers.
Sprinkler systems automatically turn on if the temperature in the building rises too quickly. Some systems will turn on the sprinkler heads in every room while others only turn on in the places where the system detects a fire. Quick response sprinklers spray 18 to 24 gallons of water per minute to suppress and put out the fire.
Fire suppression systems use a mix of dry chemicals and liquids (like water) to put out any fires in the building. Suppression systems do reduce the damage directly caused by the fire, but they can make the amount of soot damage worse. The combination of water and dry chemicals can allow the soot and dust to spread around the building.
Whether from a sprinkler system or firefighters spraying gallons of water, if the fire was big enough, you probably have some water damage in addition to the fire damage. Mold and mildew can begin to grow within 48 hours after the water damage occurs!
SERVPRO technicians have the right chemicals and methods to clean up the fire suppressant chemicals and properly restore any water damage to prevent mold and mildew from growing.
4 The most common causes of commercial fires might surprise you.
According to the National Fire Protection Association, the most common cause of fires in commercial buildings are cooking equipment. Faulty stoves, cooking accidents, and other kitchen-related incidents account for 29% of fires in office properties and 13% of fires in retail stores.
Other primary causes of fires in commercial buildings include malfunctioning heating equipment, faulty electrical and lighting, and improperly disposed cigarettes, cigars, or other smoking materials.
Because kitchens and break rooms are high-risk areas for fires, make sure your sprinklers, alarms, and fire extinguishers are properly maintained and in good working order. Have your HVAC system, water heaters, and other electrical systems inspected and maintained by a professional. Always make sure flammable materials are stored away from heat sources.
5 Cleaning damaged property can be tricky
Cleaning all the smoke and soot-damaged property can be very challenging. You can't just throw the sooty, smoky clothes in the wash or take dirty curtains to the dry cleaners. Removing soot and smoke odor can be very difficult, and household remedies are not very effective.
It is vital to deodorize everything before you clean it. SERVPRO recommends letting the professionals do the dirty work. It is essential to use counteractants, chemicals that break down the smoke molecules to get rid of the bad odors.
SERVPRO technicians use counteractants on furniture, carpets, upholstery, curtains, and other fabric surfaces. If you decide to take things to professional dry cleaners, make sure they have experience and the right equipment to handle the job.
It is vital to clean all the dishes and cookware properly, even if they look clean and unharmed by fire or smoke. Make sure all dishes and utensils are scrubbed and soaked in a solution of bleach and water. Rubber and wooden cooking items tend to absorb smoke and should be thrown away.
In most cases, floors and carpets absorb the worst of the damage because of the water or chemicals used to extinguish the fire. It is important to make sure everything is dried thoroughly to avoid mold and other problems in the future. In many cases, it is necessary to take up the flooring and replace it.
SERVPRO technicians are experts at cleaning and restoring your commercial property to its original condition. We are standing by, 24/7 to help clean and repair any size disaster. Contact us today to learn more about our commercial restoration services.