Recent Fire Damage Posts
The Capabilities of a Smart Smoke Detector
A smart smoke alarm is another tool to consider to respond quickly to a fire danger
Every day it seems a new gadget or device comes on the market, enticing you to part with your hard-earned money. How do you determine if a new product is worth its price? Safety features for your home are always worth considering, and a smoke alarm is an essential device that should be in every home. When it comes to an upgrade on this time-tested device a little skepticism may be warranted. After all, the basic smoke detector has done its job effectively for decades. What will a smart device provide that the basic models do not have, and how will it better protect your home in Arcola, TX?
The Power of a Smart Smoke Alarm
Most people would agree that quicker notification of a fire is a good thing. It allows you to call in the fire department before a fire has destroyed your entire home. This is one of the advantages of a smart smoke warning device offers, as it can alert you of a fire even when no one is at home. Other advantages are as follows:
- You can sync the device with your phone, allowing for instant notification
- You have the ability to silence false alarms from your phone
- You might save money with a listener that covers your entire home
- You can add smart batteries that feature alerts when battery power is low
A number of smart smoke detectors are now on the market, with prices starting around $100 for each detector. The ultimate test of a smart device is does it increase your fire safety.
The Benefits of Expert Cleanup
A fire in your home demands rapid action. As soon as the fire is out, be sure to contact a fire remediation team in Arcola, TX, to assess the problem and take steps to secure your home. A smart smoke alarm is another tool to consider to respond quickly to a fire danger.
Smoke Damage Stinks
Clean out the smells with these tips.
Smoke Damage Stinks
Remove the smell of smoke in your fire-damaged home by following these instructions.
1. Throw open the windows and doors as quickly as possible after the fire. The less time the smoke sits around the greater chance of getting rid of it quickly. Even if it is in the middle of winter, airing your house right away will disperse the smoke and prevent any more absorption.
2. Wash your drapes and linens as soon as possible; they will absorb the smoke odor rapidly. Wash them in the hottest water that the fabric can endure and heavy duty washing detergent.
3. Clean your cabinets, walls, and floors with a one-part vinegar, one part warm water solution. Be sure to test this first but most surfaces are fine with this solution. Vinegar naturally absorbs odors so the smell of vinegar and smoke should go away in a few hours after using it.
4. Place bowls of baking soda around your kitchen, and even put a few in the cabinets, pantry, and any other room that has an odor. This too will help to absorb the odor in a few days time. Sprinkle the rugs and carpeting with baking soda and vacuum. Sprinkle the baking soda again and this time let sit for a few days time before vacuuming.
5. If the house still reeks of smoke or if you don’t want to mess with it in the first place, just call us here at SERVPRO and we’ll get it right out.
3 Grill Cleaning Tips Every Homeowner Should Know
Grill cleaning can help to ensure your grill functions at its best
Cleaning Grill Tips
Whether you're grilling fresh veggies or a steak, using your grill is a great way to create a delicious meal in your home in Stafford,TX. Grill cleaning, however, can seem like a chore. Fortunately, there are several tips you can follow that can make cleaning your grill easier.
1. Burn Off What You Can
If you have a gas grill and it's your first time using it since the last grilling season, then it's often recommended that you turn on your grill and allow it to burn for 10 to 20 minutes. This can help to burn off anything that you may have missed previously and may make other cleaning steps easier. However, if you use charcoal rather than gas, it's not necessary to turn on your grill. Instead, safely dispose of the old charcoal. Before you continue cleaning, it's helpful to make sure the propane is disconnected.
2. Focus on the Grates
Grill cleaning can help you to avoid dirty grates, which is important as dirty grates may result in a grease fire, and this can cause major damage to your home. Many people find it useful to contact emergency restoration services if their homes have sustained fire damage. However, you can often avoid the issue by practicing grill maintenance and thoroughly cleaning the grates on your grill. One of the best ways to clean your grill grates is to remove them from the grill, let them soak in warm soapy water and then scrub them with a brush.
3. Clean the Inside of the Grill
The elements inside your grill may seem difficult to clean, but fortunately, they aren't too hard to wash. Removing the grates before attempting to scrub the inside of your grill makes the process much simpler. Once you have removed the grates, you can access the inside elements of the grill and then can wipe away any ash or additional debris inside the grill with a cloth.
Grill cleaning can help to ensure your grill functions at its best. You can maintain and clean your grill by frequently burning off grime, scrubbing your grates and cleaning the inside of your grill.
Act Fast To Prevent Further Fire Damage
If your Houston area home has recently been affected by a fire, act fast to prevent further damage.
Even a small single-room fire can cause significant damage to other areas of the home. Heat affects electrical appliances throughout the home, water from knocking down flames damages carpets and floors, soot causes pervasive corrosion and damage, and smoke odor can permeate the walls. To avoid such fall-out damage, here are a few steps to follow as soon as possible after a fire:
1. Contact your insurance company to start the claims process. They will likely recommend you contact an emergency response team like your locally owned and operated Houston SERVPRO to help you throughout the rebuilding and restoration process. We are available 24 hours a day, and our fire damage restoration team has advanced training to help prevent further damage to your home.
2. Complete an assessment of structural damage and damage to personal items in the home caused by the flames, heat, smoke, and water. It is vital that all rooms, including those not initially touched by flames, be examined thoroughly for damage. All wiring must be carefully inspected for heat damage; if wires behind walls were affected by the heat, rewiring may be required. For your safety and to prevent further damage, do not use any electrical outlets until wires and electronic devices have been professionally evaluated.
3. Conduct an inventory of the items in your home. Missouri City SERVPRO is on hand to conduct this room-by-room evaluation, categorizing each item as salvageable, unsalvageable, orquestionable. Salvageable items will need professional cleaning, unsalvageable items will be properly disposed of, and questionable items will be further examined by industry experts. Often, antiquities and art restoration professionals can bring even seriously damaged personal items back into pre-fire condition. Either way, the earlier that restoration professionals have access to fine art, antiques, fine carpets, and other heirlooms, the better your valuables’ chance for a full restoration from the devastating effects of smoke, flames, and water.
4. Guard against mold quickly. The longer the water and soot remain in the home, the more long-term damage will be caused. In the greater Houston area, mold starts to develop within 48 hours after water damage. It is essential that water extraction, cleaning and dehumidifying process begin as soon as the fire department deems the property safe, to avoid further damage.
Count on your locally owned and operated Houston SERVPRO if a fire, water, or a storm damages your home. We are available 24 hours a day, and can arrive on scene within hours to help you throughout the cleaning, restoration, and rebuilding process. Our team has the advanced training, expertise, and tools necessary to help you and your family get back into your home quickly. Call us right away—you can trust us to care for your home as we would our own. For more information and customer testimonials, visit our Home Page.
Fire Damage in Stafford Texas
Beginning to end repair.
Fire Damage Can Catch You Off Guard!
Here is a total reconstruction project that SERVPRO has taken on after a freak accident caused this family's house to burn down beyond repair.
SERVPRO handled all the demolition for this residence after the tragic fire had happened. The owner loved working with us so much that he decided to have SERVPRO take care of the entire reconstruction of the home as well.
The project has passed all inspections and was to be a quick rebuild for the homeowner. This fire damage repair moved along at a great pace!
Not many companies can take you from Fire Damage Cleanup to Total Reconstruction of your most valuable possession.
Call us today if you have had a fire damage! (281) 403-2256
We thought it was a good time to share some tips that could keep you and your family safe from getting burned.
Scalds are one of the leading causes of burns in children under the age of 9 in the United States. To prevent your children from being scalded by hot water make sure that you are checking the temperature of their bath water before placing them in the bathtub. To ensure that your water won't be too hot adjust your Hot Water Heater to no more than 120 degrees F so that the chance of having water hot enough to scald someone is drastically reduced.
Before giving them a warm drink like Hot Chocolate, make sure that it is cool enough for them to drink or hold before handing it to them.
When cooking, make sure you turn your pot handles in over the counters so that they don't get knocked over by you or your kids by accident.
For adults who use home oxygen make sure that there are no open flame sources nearby, and please do not smoke or let them smoke while an oxygen tank is in the room.
If you are using a fireplace in your home make sure that you have a gate that protects embers from leaving the fireplace and that no one touches that gate while the fireplace is in use as it can be very hot if touched.
If you do get burned the best thing you can do first is to place the burned area under cool (not cold) water for a few minutes to lessen the severity of the burn. If the burn is serious it is advised that you report to an emergency medical office to seek further treatment.
For more information visit ameriburn.org or beburnaware.org and if any scalds are from the result of a fire and the damage is too much for you to clean yourself, call SERVPRO (281) 403-2256.
Stafford Texas Fire Restoration Process
Most people do not know what to expect when it comes to calling someone to help you pick up the pieces after a fire.
Here is the process we take to make you and your family feel safe after a major disaster.
Step 1: Emergency Contact
The restoration process begins when you call SERVPRO of Stafford / Missouri City.
Step 2: Inspection and Assessment
We carefully inspect and test the rooms of your property to determine the extent of the fire, smoke, and soot damage.
Step 3: Immediate Board-Up and Roof-Tarp Service
To maintain security and to protect against further damage, we can board up missing windows and walls and place tarps on damaged roofs.
Step 4: Water Removal and Drying
The water removal process begins almost immediately and removes the majority of the water. We then use dehumidifiers and air movers to remove the remaining water and complete the drying process.
Step 5: Removal of Smoke and Soot from All Surfaces
We use specialized equipment and techniques to remove smoke and soot from ceilings, walls, and other surfaces.
Step 6: Cleaning
We clean, sanitize, and disinfect all of the restorable items and structures that were damaged by the fire.
Step 7: Restoration
Restoration may involve minor repairs, such as replacing drywall, painting, and installing new carpet; or it may entail major repairs such as the reconstruction of various areas or rooms in a home or business.
Call SERVPRO today (281) 403-2256.
Dos For Fire Damage Restoration
Dos For Fire Damage Restoration
Contact SERVPRO, your fire restoration specialists to make sure that you have the help and guidance you need.
- Turn off your utilities, this includes electricity, gas, water, and any others until one of our professionals can evaluate your situation and see if any of these systems were damaged in your
- Although our SERVPRO professionals will take care of you. Grabbing that vacuum out of the closet and getting a kick start on clean up will help prevent ash and soot from soaking deeper into your upholstery.
- As stated above with your upholstery, you can do the same thing to your floors, carpets, and countertops. This will help keep that soot from going deeper into your carpets roots. Cleaning the countertops will prevent from clinging and deeply staining to the surfaces.
- Check your appliances. Empty freezers and refrigerators.
- Remove your pets from your damaged home. Smoke and lingering soot can cause great harm to them.
Do Not's For Fire Damage Restoration
Do Not's For Fire Damage Restoration
Contact SERVPRO, your fire restoration specialists to make sure that you have the help and guidance you need.
- Do NOT use your AC, Heater or Electronics. Wait until our professionals arrive to the scene before trying to use your devices such as your television, hand held devices, computers, or anything of that nature. Powering on these devices could potentially create a greater damage than what was already present.
- Do NOT clean walls, ceilings, or your clothing. Allow our SERVPRO professionals to give you their expert advice on the proper precautions.
- Do NOT eat any food that was involved in the fire. It is not save, even if it was only present during the extinguishing of the fire.
- Do NOT try and clean any of the powder that was discharged by a fire extinguisher, let our professionals guide the clean up in these areas.
Working Smoke Detectors Save Lives
Smoke detectors can save your life, don't get caught without one.
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 on 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 Detectors
- Three out of five fire deaths occur in homes with no smoke alarms or when the alarms are not working.
- Smoke alarm failures usually result from missing, disconnected, or dead batteries.
- More than one-third (37 percent) 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 in homes with working smoke alarms.
*Statistics and tips provided by National Fire Prevention Association.
If you have fire damage call SERVPRO TODAY! (281) 403-2256
8 Tips to Avoiding Holiday Hazards In Your Stafford Home
Candles can be a holiday hazard, always use caution.
Candles, pretty lights, and decorations are just a few of the items that add to the charm and cheer of the holiday season-however if they are not used carefully your holidays may go from festive to frightening very quickly.
Review the following simple safety tips, provided by the National Fire Protection Association, to greatly reduce the fire risk in your home or business this holiday season.
1. Two out of five home decoration fires are started by candles. Keep candles at least 12 inches away from anything that burns.
2. Use sturdy candle holders that are not likely to tip over and place candles on clear, uncluttered surfaces. Consider using flameless candles instead of real candles.
3. Make sure your tree and decorations are at least three feet away from heat sources like fireplaces, radiators, space heaters, candles or heat vents.
4. Make sure you have the correct type of lights for your desired decor. Some lights are designed for only indoor or outdoor use, but not both.
5. Carefully inspect light strands before placing them. Replace any string of lights with worn or broken cords or loose bulb connections. Connect no more than three strands of light sets.
6. Remember to turn off outside decorative lights and Christmas tree lights before leaving or going to bed.
7. Get rid of your tree after Christmas or when it is dry. Dried-out trees are a fire danger and should not be left in the home or garage, or placed outside against the home. Check with your local community to find a recycling program.
8. Bring outdoor electrical lights inside after the holidays to prevent hazards and make them last longer.
Your local SERVPRO Franchise Professionals wish you a safe and happy holiday season!
Home Health: Clearing Out Smoke Damage In Your Home
You’re relieved that the fire damage was minimal but shocked to find that the smoke damage is extensive. One can forget about the destructive power of smoke but are quickly reminded of it by the caustic odor that is filling your home. The smoky pollutant irritates your eyes and airways, while the sticky residue on scorched walls and the layer of ashes begin to corrode your personal belongings.
The urgency to clear out the smoke sets in as you realize that although the flames did not reach far, the smoke damage did. Smoke and ashes travel through doors and vents, reaching your entire home, infusing your carpet, drapes, and furniture with the odor of smoke. Even the paint on the wall is not safe! Tiny molecules of smoke embed deep into the pores and crevices of almost anything.
The soot settled on surfaces eating away at wood varnishes and discoloring metals and plastic –ashes can even make their way into electronics causing damage from the inside out!
As you can see, a simple opening of windows, a wipe down with a household cleaner, and the passage of time will not be enough to remedy this sort of smoke damage.
For extensive smoke damage to your Houston home, it’s best to call a professional smoke cleaning service. While there are many Houston fire restoration companies available, those that are IICRC-approved are considered the best. The Institute for Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification require advanced training. What’s more, businesses with this honored certification are held to higher standards of service.
When you combine IICRC certification along with Better Business Bureau approval and local Stafford community associations, what you get is Houston’s top smoke damage restoration business –SERVPRO.
Serving the Stafford, Missouri City, and Houston, we use the most advanced methods and equipment for restoring smoke and fire damage. With training that surpasses even IICRC standards, SERVPRO of Stafford and Missouri City clears out the most severe cases of smoke damage, making at though it never occurred.
Considering all your options for the right smoke damage restoration company is important, however, acting fact is just as critical. That’s why Houston Sevpro prides itself at having the fastest response time.
A fast response time important because:
• Fire and smoke continues its destruction until it is properly cleaned and repaired. The sooner you call Sevpro, the less damage you will incur.
• For the most part, restoring your belongings will be less expensive than replacing it. SERVPRO smoke damage technicians will help assess which items can be salvaged and which need to be replaced, potentially saving you money in the long run.
• Don’t forget that smoke cleaning services may be covered under your homeowners or renters insurance! Ask about our free insurance claims service that helps you with every step of the claims process.
From claim to cleanup, your local Houston area SERVPRO aims to be the top choice in smoke damage restoration. We make sure to clear out the smoke right, the first time. Call us today for a professional inspection and explore our website to learn more about our complete home and commercial smoke restoration services.
Houston Home Care: Mini Guide to Fire Damage Recovery
You do what you can to prevent a large house fire by keeping a fire extinguisher in the kitchen, basement, garage, and even one by the fireplace. You prepare for a fire by installing and regularly checking your smoke detectors. You’ve even developed an evacuation plan and have practiced it with your family. Although all of these actions will significantly reduce injury, loss of life, and the amount of fire damage to your Houston home, there is no way to guarantee that you will never suffer from a house fire.
We know all too well the shock of a crippling house fire. SERVPRO of Stafford and Missouri City, your locally owned and operated SERVPRO in Houston, has been coming to the aid of our neighbors of with fire damage restoration for many years.
As the local experts of fire and smoke damage restoration, we put together this mini-guide to help you in the fire recovery process. We encourage you to print it out and keep one in your car and another in your emergency kit. You can also bookmark this article to refer to it quickly from your phone.
Your safety and that of your family are our primary concern, therefore do the suggested tips after you are out of danger and you’ve called 911.
1. Contact Your Insurance Company.
Your insurance company and SERVPRO of Stafford and Missouri City have the same goal in mind --to get to work on repairing your fire damage as soon as possible. The sooner you contact your homeowners or renters insurance company, the faster your fire damage claim is processed.
2. Contact a Fire Damage Restoration Business.
Fire damage restoration is a task that requires specialized equipment, advanced training, and the knowledge of safety protocols – not a job that even the most willing and helpful friends should be doing. You have many choices in Houston for fire damage restoration, and you can read this previous article for tips on how to find a reputable home restoration business. However, if you are short on time, know that you can count on SERVPRO. We proudly hold several certifications in home and commercial fire restoration and are in good standing with the Better Business Bureau.
3. Inventory Damaged Items.
As best as you can, begin an itemized list of damaged and destroyed items. Give as much detail as you can as this will aid your insurance company process your claim. Also, keep a record of the items that are being professionally cleaned and restored. All of this can be a tedious process, and your locally owned Houston SERVPRO gladly assists with it all. From inventory to restoring your fire-damaged belongings, SERVPRO is here to help you recover quickly.
4. Seek Replacement of Important Documents.
Depending on where the house fire is located, you may need to replace important documents. After receiving the “all-clear” from firefighters, cautiously look for documents such as medical records, financial records, deeds, passports, citizen documents, and the like. If these papers are destroyed or lost, don’t worry as they can be replaced. Call the appropriate agency to request a replacement as soon as possible. For those other hard to replace or critical items such as photos and computers, SERVPRO may be able to save them. We are known for our fire damage and water damage restoration abilities!
5. Seek Emotional Support.
We hope that you and your family escape the house fire with little to no physical injuries; however, don’t discount the emotional trauma that may occur. Ranging from a heightened sense of distress to symptoms similar to PTSD, events such as a house fire can affect your sense of wellbeing. Talk to your doctor or contact social services for help in finding the support you and your family need to recover emotionally.
Step-by-step, recovering after a house fire will happen, and your Houston area SERVPRO is here to help you every step of the way. Since first opening up our doors in 1967, SERVPRO has pledged to make your fire damaged house feel like home again. We have a highly trained team standing by 24 hours a day, 7 days a week ready to come to your aid when you need us the most.
Houston Home Care: Don’t Wait –Check The Date of Your Smoke Alarm
The Chicago Fire, also known as the Great Chicago Fire, engulfed the city in flames for two days. When finally controlled, the fire had destroyed more than 17,000 structures and claimed an estimated 250 lives. In remembrance of the Great Chicago Fire and in hopes of saving lives, the National Fire Prevention Association (NFPA) holds a National Fire Prevention Week. The 2016 Fire Prevention Week theme, running from October 9-15th, is “Don’t wait --check the date!” reminding everyone to replace household smoke alarms every 10 years.
Because of this event, and as Houston’s leading fire damage restoration company, we’ve gathered home fire facts and tips to help keep you and your family safe.
• In 2014, U.S. fire departments responded to 367,500 house fires that resulted in nearly 3,000 deaths.
• Between 2009-2013, 3 out of 5 home fire deaths occurred in homes without smoke alarms or with non-working smoke alarms.
• Smoke alarm failure is frequently caused missing batteries, batteries, expired batteries, or from the smoke alarm being disconnected from the power source.
• Smoke alarms cut the risk of dying in a house fire by half,
Emergency Exit Plan
• Fire can spread quickly. Often you will have as little as 2 minutes from the moment the smoke alarm sounds to get out of the house to safety.
• Having an emergency plan and practicing it can help save your life and your family’s life. Unfortunately, nearly have of those who have a plan practice it.
• For help in developing an escape plan and ways to help children prepare for an emergency, visit the NFPA website.
• Two out of every five house fires start in the kitchen. Frying is the activity most often associated with kitchen fires.
• A fire extinguisher can save lives and your home by putting out small fires before they grow out of control, though it is important to remember that they have limitations. The main priority is always your safety and that of your family.
• Familiarize yourself with the operation of the fire extinguisher and place one in several areas of your home. The suggested locations for keeping a fire extinguisher includes the kitchen, your bedroom, the basement, attic, and by the outdoor grill.
• Space heaters are also a major contributor to house fires and it the second cause of fire deaths in recent years. To help prevent fire, do not use an extension cord with your space heater and be sure to keep it clear of fabrics and other items that are flammable.
The NFPA and Houston SERVPRO remind you to replace your smoke detectors every ten years. Most house fires happen at night making it all the most critical to have smoke alarms in working order. If you hear the alarm sound at night, implement the family escape plan immediately. Your life and the lives of your loved ones can never be replaced. A home damaged by fire, however, can be restored.
To learn more about Houston SERVPRO’s fire damage restoration services, call
Finding A Trusted Commercial Fire Damage Restoration Company In Houston
Getting the business up and running is difficult after fire damage. With employees eager to get back to work and clients depending on your recovery, you need a fire damage solution you can trust –and fast. A quick search for Houston commercial fire damage restoration services on the web will give you the top choices in Houston. But how do you know which firm you can trust to get the job right the first time and in record time?
Use this checklist to compare commercial fire restoration options:
? Better Business Bureau Affiliation –You may already be familiar with what it takes to earn the stamp of approval from the BBB. Businesses that have BBB affiliation are committed to the higher standards of integrity and quality of service. Firms that are members of local chambers of commerce, as well as part of professional affiliations, are also signs that the restoration company is a valued part of the community.
? IICRC Certification - The internationally respected Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification is an independent body that sets criteria for proper home and commercial restoration. The IICRC serves as a resource for advanced training in fire, water, and smoke damage restoration, as well as a valuable place for business owners to find IICRC certified commercial restoration firms in their area.
? Testimonials and References – Fire restoration companies with a track record of happy clients will be eager to share testimonials. You can also ask other businesses who they used for large restoration projects. If you hear the same commercial restoration company name from different local business owners, it’s worth checking out.
? A Network of Resources – Fire restoration projects that are particularly large or that require specialized equipment would fair better with a commercial fire and water damage restoration firm that has the resources to get the job done. Houston SERVPRO, for example, is part of a nationwide system of qualified franchises of over 1,600 strong.
? Can Address All Your Restoration Needs – One can often forget that fire involves other sorts of damages too. There are soot and smoke damage, water damage, and even mold damage. When you are considering a particular commercial restoration firm, make sure that they are well equipped and experienced in the full scale of fire, smoke, and water damage restoration including commercial mold remediation.
Choosing a commercial fire and water damage restoration can seem like a tedious task –unless you know what to look for. By using the checklist above, you’ll find the list of qualified commercial restoration companies in Houston to be just a few.
No doubt, you’ll find Houston SERVPRO at the top of the list as we’ve worked hard to get there. Since 1967, SERVPRO has been the most recognized and trusted name in home and commercial fire damage restoration. Call us today at (281) 403-2256 and let us help you get back to business.