Recent Fire Damage Posts
Tips for Enjoying Fall Bonfires, Safely | SERVPRO of Allen
Bonfire season is upon us! SERVPRO of Allen has your back with these helpful fire safety tips.
What a crazy hot and humid summer we experienced! Now that we are into September, we are looking forward to the reprieve and we will happily welcome the cooler temperatures and changing seasons. The fall season is all about fall decorations, pumpkin spice and cozy outdoor bonfires.
Spending more time outside around a bonfire is a wonderful way to enjoy the changing seasons, but we can’t let our guard down when it comes to fire safety and the potential risk of starting a wildfire.
Our SERVPRO® of Allen team explains more about fall fire safety below so you can enjoy your s’mores, campfires stories and cozy evenings without worry.Tips For Starting the Fire Safely
Do choose a safe location for your fire pit. Permanent pits cannot be moved, but you can still clear brush away and ensure your log pile is far from the ring. Portable pits should be set up on level ground that is far away from your house, shed and garage.
Do keep water close by for emergencies. Buckets of water or a garden hose that is turned on and ready to use are both reliable water sources that you can use in an instant if needed. If you are camping or in an area without easy access to water, ensure you have a shovel close by to extinguish the flames with dirt or sand.
Do pay attention to the weather and obey local burn bans. Windy days or lingering dry conditions can create dangerous fire situations quickly. Check with our local authorities before lighting your fire and choose another day for your plans if the conditions are less than ideal.Tips for Controlling the Flames
Don’t use anything other than matches, lighters or tinder to maintain your fire. Gas and lighter fluid are extremely flammable, but are also extremely unpredictable. They can easily start your fire pit and surrounding grass on fire and lead to a serious situation in seconds.
Don’t let your kids or pets get too close to the fire pit, and certainly do not leave them unattended near it. Serious burns, injuries or accidents can happen in the blink of an eye.
Don’t let your fire get too large. It can be fun to feed the fire and watch the flames grow, but large fires can be harder to control and can be more unpredictable.
Don’t go inside or leave your home until you are 100% sure that your flames are out. Pour water over the entire area until the embers are extinguished and the logs are cold to the touch.Reducing Wildfire Risk
We can all do our part to reduce the number of wildfires or fire damage in our community. While not all wildfires can be prevented, the vast majority of them are actually caused by humans. Be responsible with your flames, listen and obey all burning restrictions and never leave your pit unattended at any time.
Our team is here for you 24⁄7 to help you recover if you ever suffer fire damage at your home or property. Contact us right away for a complete restoration.
Fire can cause a lot of damage in a short amount of time. Contact us day or night for immediate assistance.
How to Approach Fire Safety With Your Children | SERVPRO of Allen
SERVPRO of Allen is here for you and your family if you experience a fire in your home or business.
Keeping your kids safe often feels like a full-time job! Many kids are naturally curious about the world, and it can be fun but also a delicate balance between teaching them about the realities of the world and scaring them with the facts.
Fire safety is a crucial lesson for your children, but even you know that fire can be scary—and you are an adult!
By slowly introducing fire safety concepts in a relaxed and encouraging environment, you can prepare your kids for the possibility of a house fire while also giving them the tools they need to stay safe.
<h3fire-safety-around-the-home">Introducing Fire Safety Around the Home
Kids often learn through hands-on experiences, but you certainly don’t want to just be starting fires all over your home. Start with the basics and explain the different areas of your home where fire is often used, like your stove, bonfire pit and your candles. Explain how it spreads and what it needs to grow, and discuss how quickly a single spark can lead to a big fire.
This is also the time to explain that adults are responsible for tools like matches and lighters. While these items are necessary to have around the home, they can be dangerous in the hands of a small child. Encourage them to leave these items alone and to tell an adult if a match or lighter is left around the house.
<h3and-listening-to-authority">Understanding and Listening to Authority
Many kids want to grow up and become a firefighter or police officer, but many of these kids are also shy around authority. This is especially true if the men and women they interact with are in their full uniforms and gear. Try to show your kids pictures, videos and books about firefighters so they understand what they look like when one of them comes into your home.
You should also try to attend a local meet-and-greet opportunity when you can! If your children can meet your local fire crew now, it increases their chances of responding appropriately in the event of a true emergency. It is also crucial that your kids feel comfortable calling out their names and crawling to safety. Practice this by making it a game! See who can yell the loudest from their rooms and army crawl to an exit the fastest.
<h3your-exit-strategy">Making Your Exit Strategy
Every home in the Allen area should have an emergency exit plan. If you haven’t done this yet, grab your kids and have some fun! Challenge them to find every way out of your room and write down their findings together onto a diagram of your house.
It is also important to have a safety conversation about the windows in your home. While using them as an exit can save lives, it can also be dangerous knowledge for a child. Be sure to explain that windows are used in an emergency situation only and should never be used for fun.
Once you have your plan finalized, put it all together! Practice a fire scenario at least twice a year and go all the way through from the initial fire escape to meeting outside on the safety of the lawn.
Fires can cause widespread damage. Call us for a thorough and efficient restoration.
Protect Your Home From Fire This Season | SERVPRO® of Allen
Should a fire issue pop-up during this holiday season, SERVPRO of Allen will be on call ready to assist.
The holiday season is here! Cozy homes full of glowing lights, fresh pies and cookies, and our closest friends and family make this time of year so wonderful. Unfortunately, though, the coziness of this season actually leads to more home fires than any other time of year.
While you are busy writing out your letter to Santa or prepping for your first-ever Turkey Trot, it is important to remember proper safety practices when decorating and celebrating around the Allen area.
Fire risk is all around us during this wonderful time of year, so staying safe should be in the forefront of your mind as you plan for the holidays ahead.
Seasonal Hazards to Watch For
House fires due to decoration accidents are actually quite common. In fact, about 790 structural fires each year are due to decoration mishaps. Don’t let your beautiful home fall victim to a preventable accident!
If you hang stockings or garland, be careful to avoid any source of heat like space heaters or fireplaces. The consistent heat and flame can start a fire or melt your decorations.
If a real tree is your family tradition, have a responsible person in your home water it daily and sweep or vacuum up any dead needles on the ground around it. Your tree’s lights and other lighted decorations should also be unplugged each night before you head to bed.
Steps to Take
While classic decorations like hanging your stockings over the chimney are common and super cozy, they can actually be a fire hazard if you are not cautious. Try not to let them hang too close to the flames or choose a spot nearby instead.
Also be careful about your candle use! Candles start about 20 home fires every day in the United States, so it is especially important to only burn a candle while you are home and in the room. They should also only be lit in an area out of reach of children and pets.
Outdoor lights and decorations are also a great way to celebrate the holiday season! However, before you set up anything outside, make sure it is tagged for outdoor use and can withstand the elements. Don’t pierce any cords while hanging up your decorations, and avoid hanging anything right over a brush pile or wood.
Once you are finished decorating safely, make sure that your smoke detectors have fresh batteries and are working properly! Review your safety plan with your family and make sure your children know how to get out of your home quickly.
Finally, keep us in mind if you do end up suffering fire damage. Your SERVPRO of Allen team is ready to help should you need us this holiday season.
Have smoke or fire damage in your house? Contact us today to get cleaned up fast.
Copyright © 2022 SERVPRO of Allen
Fall Brings Football & New Fire Dangers | SERVPRO® of Allen
Be mindful about fall fire safety. Always remember that SERVPRO of Allen is the trusted leader in the restoration industry.
When fall hits, it’s football time in Texas. Along with football, comes tailgating, cooking…and additional fire dangers.
While it might not be cool yet here in the heart of Texas, cooler weather brings some unique fire risks. It’s worth taking the time now to learn how to protect yourself and your property.
People like to spend more time outside in the fall after the oppressive heat of summer begins to fade. Favorite outdoor activities often involve hanging around a fire, whether it’s the grill or a fire pit.
Grilling and tailgating go together, so let’s discuss them both. The single largest cause of fire with grills involves excessive grease buildup. Regular cleaning of the grill will easily prevent fires from excessive grease.
Campfires and fire pits should also be a source of concern. Knowing where and how to build a campfire is as important as knowing how to put it out.
Use a match or lighter to set fire to dry leaves or twigs, then add dry wood and bigger sticks. Never use an accelerant like kerosene or lighter fluid.
Fires should be far away from buildings and other flammable objects. Make sure to extinguish your firecompletely before leaving your campsite or fire pit. Slowly douse it with a bucket of water and make sure no embers remain—anything you leave behind can start up again with the right breeze.
After a long, hot Allen summer, many homeowners look forward to cleaning their yards in the fall. This includes raking, and some will burn their leaves and other yard debris.
Open burning is legal in Allen but don’t forget about the “open burning rules” in Texas.
Portable space heaters are one of the most frequent causes of home fires in fall and winter. While there may be no need for a heater yet here due to the outdoor temperatures, it’s worth mentioning in case ice-cold AC in the office has you reaching for a space heater.
Keep your heater away from anything flammable. Ensure it’s on a stable level surface and not near where any children may want to play. If possible, don’t use extension cords with heaters; plug them straight into the wall.
We’ll talk more about this later, but costumes and decorations can be fire hazards, and all these things are ubiquitous during the Halloween season, so be attentive and responsible as you celebrate.
If a fire hazard should turn from potential to reality in your home, remember the trusted leader in the recovery industry and contact SERVPRO to get your property fully restored right down to the smell of smoke.
Copyright © 2021 SERVPRO of Allen
Your Fire Safety Checklist for Warmer Weather | SERVPRO® of Allen
Restoring fire and smoke damage is one of our specialties. Contact SERVPRO of Allen to learn more.
As popular as New Year’s Day is, many people look forward to spring as the start of something truly new.
The weather feels nice again, the outdoors seems more inviting and new life is springing up everywhere. Something about it just feels right, doesn’t it?
Spring also beckons us to barbecue. We’ll use any old reason to break out the smoker or grill—graduation parties, family cookouts or high school reunions. But this also leads to an increase in accidental fires.
In fact, spring sees more daily fires on average than any other time of year. But don’t worry; we’ve got the safety tips that will keep you on the path to a safe, enjoyable season around the house.
The grill. Grills are a common culprit for springtime fires, which is why they are often the first thing we think about for fire safety. The basics of safety: Make sure your grill is stable and in good working order, keep it cleaned between uses (almost 20% of grill fires are due to poor cleaning), use only recommended accelerants and fuels, and keep it at least three feet from the house (and 10 from any brush or leaves).
The fire pit. Picture yourself hanging out with good friends, and you may also envision a fire pit. Fire pits add a cozy glow to a cooling spring or summer night, but it’s important to operate them safely. Keep a bucket of water nearby—use it to slowly cool the fire to cold embers once the night is through, or as an emergency snuffer. Keep kids away from any fires unattended. And don’t use leaves or pine needles to stoke the fire, as they may create runaway embers.
Chimneys and dryer vents. Your chimney can get a backup or buildup of ash, and spring is at least a pleasant time to do the unpleasant job of cleaning it out so that next fall you’re not lighting fires in a clogged chimney. As for the dryer, use this season change to check all its connections, hoses and vent pipes for built-up lint.
Your local SERVPRO technicians are on hand 24⁄7 for emergencies. If you encounter fire damage at your home or business, no matter the cause, we will be there faster and have it cleaned up sooner. Call or click today and experience the SERVPRO difference.
How to Avoid Furnace Fires | SERVPRO® of Allen
If you experience any property damage due to a fire, we are here to help. Contact SERVPRO of Allen to learn more.
Wow! This summer has definitely been a warm one. But with fall upon us, we may be thinking about cranking up our furnaces again. Waking up with toasty toes rather than a freezing nose has its temptations.
About 62 million houses in the U.S. use natural gas furnaces for heat. Other houses use wood furnaces, and a proud few still burn coal. These suggestions focus on gas furnaces, but it’s important to perform preventive maintenance on any type of furnace.
Clean around the furnace. Do a quick clean-up, making sure no insulation, paper, boxes or anything else is stored within three feet of the furnace.
Clean the furnace itself. Dirt can cause motor overheating, and it can prevent you from seeing problems with wiring or other issues.
Look at Your Air Filter
Is your air filter clean? Dirty air filters can reduce air flow and lead to overheating, increasing the chances of fire.
Check Chimney Flues and Outside Vents
Check for buildup inside the vents, as well as outside obstructions such as birds’ nests.
Is Your Smoke Alarm Working?
It’s a good time to check both your smoke and CO alarms. If you don’t have them—get them.
For Some Things, You Need a Professional
Every year, it’s a good idea to have your furnace serviced by a professional. They can check for items such as a cracked heat exchanger, incorrect pressure in the furnace and even flame color, which can indicate how well your furnace is functioning. If you haven’t had your furnace serviced lately, this is a good time to make an appointment.
If your home has suffered fire damage, SERVPRO of Allen can help. Our agents are on call around the clock so we can start helping you get back to normal, fast. Contact us at any hour for assistance.
Planning and Executing Workplace Fire Evacuation Drills | SERVPRO® of Allen
If your business experiences any fire damage, you can count on us. SERVPRO of Allen specializes in fire restoration.
Understanding your business’ risk levels from a market perspective is key, but it is important to also understand the risk levels you face from disasters and emergencies. Fires at businesses occur every year, and for those who do not focus on lessening their impact, they can be devastating.
While there are many elements to fire safety in the workplace, we highly encourage businesses to start with what will keep their staff as safe as possible by creating a system for evacuation drills. These drills will not take up much time and will help your staff know exactly what to do if the fire alarm sounds.
Create a System for Evacuation Drills at Your Business
Consult with your local fire officials. There are many online resources available for business owners to do their research regarding fire safety, but do not forget about community resources as well. The local fire squad will likely be able to schedule a visit and provide you with valuable counsel regarding the best evacuation routes to set up based on the specifics of your building.
Communicate and mark fire evacuation routes. After you have decided what evacuation routes suit your needs, be sure they are labeled clearly and your staff is aware of the upcoming drill. Keeping everyone looped in will create more transparency and be sure every one of your staff members are prepared when the drill begins.
Have fire drills frequently. While it is possible to have drills too frequently, we generally find that the problem is not scheduling them often enough to make an impact. You should have them with enough regularity that they are fresh in everyone’s mind, so that even if a fire does start unexpectedly, everyone remembers exactly what the protocol is.
Run different fire scenarios. Fires can start and spread in a multitude of ways, especially in a commercial or office space. Keep your drills dynamic by taking this into account—have the drill begin in different spots around the office, so your staff can become accustomed to using different exits with little notice just as they would need to in a real fire.
If your business has experienced fire damage, you can count on us. We specialize in commercial fire restoration and will be here for you at any hour—contact us today.
Two Types of Smoke
Two Types of Smoke?
Did you know that there are two types of smoke? Well, there are!
The two types are wet and dry smoke:
Wet smoke comes from plastic and rubber, usually low heat, with a strong odor, and is sticky and smeary. Smoke webs are more difficult to clean than with dry smoke.
Dry smoke is usually fast burning, with high temperatures; the heat rises, which means the smoke does too!
These sorts of distinctions are only some of the reasons that you should choose SERVPRO of Allen to respond when you encounter fire or smoke damage in your home or business. Our history serving folks in the Allen area, regardless of the type of damage sustained, is a strong indication that you can trust us to care for you in your time of need. Give us a call, and let us help you with your fire or smoke damage!
Soot and Smoke Damage
Smoke and soot can permeate into unseen areas of your home. Let SERVPRO of Allen help.
Smoke and soot are very invasive, and can cover even non-visible surfaces within your home, causing hidden damage and odor. SERVPRO of Allen's smoke damage expertise and experience allows us to inspect and accurately assess the extent of the damage to develop a comprehensive plan of action to remove it and restore your home.
There are two different types of smoke–wet and dry. As a result, there are different types of soot residue after a fire. Before restoration begins, SERVPRO of Allen will test the soot to determine which type of smoke damage occurred. The cleaning procedures will then be based on the information identified during pre-testing.
Since each smoke and fire damage situation is a little different, each one requires a unique solution tailored for the specific conditions. We are equipped to restore your fire and smoke damage, will treat your family with empathy and respect, and your property with care.
Have questions about fire, smoke, or soot damage? Call us today at 469-247-4429
Fire Damage - What to do Until Help Arrives
When your home or business suffers a fire loss, here are some things to do and things to avoid
Things to Do:
- Limit movement in the home to prevent soot particles from being embedded into upholstery and carpet.
- Keep hands clean. Soot on hands can further soil upholstery, walls and woodwork.
- Place dry, colorfast towels or old linens on rugs, upholstery, and carpet traffic areas.
- If electricity is off, empty freezer and refrigerator completely, and prop doors open to help prevent odor.
- Wipe soot from chrome on kitchen and bathroom faucets, trim, and appliances, then protect these surfaces with a light coating of lubricant.
- If heat is off during winter, pour RV antifreeze in sinks, toilet bowls, holding tanks, and tubs to avoid freezing pipes and fixtures.
- Wash both sides of leaves on house plants.
- Change HVAC filter, but leave system off until a trained professional can check the system.
- Tape double layers of cheesecloth over air registers to stop particles of soot from getting in or out of the HVAC system.
Things Not to Do:
- Don't attempt to wash any walls or painted surfaces without first contacting SERVPRO of Allen.
- Don't attempt to shampoo carpet or upholstered furniture without first consulting SERVPRO of Allen.
- Don't attempt to clean any electrical appliances (TV sets, radios, etc.) that may have been close to fire, heat, or water without first consulting an authorized repair service.
- Don't consume any food or beverages that may have been stored close to fire, heat, or water (they may be contaminated).
- Don't turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet. Wiring may be wet or damaged and cause electrical shock, and air movement may create secondary damage.
- Don't send garments to the dry cleaner. Improper cleaning may set in smoke odor.
Call SERVPRO of Allen for all your fire and soot damage restoration needs! 469-247-4429