Recent Fire Damage Posts

Tips to Stay Safe during Fire Damage: SERVPRO of Maury/Giles Counties

3/29/2022 (Permalink)

SERVPRO green Disaster Recovery truck trailer parked outside of a property restoration project with four workers around it. No matter how serious your property damage may be, SERVPRO of Maury/Giles Counties is your local expert for restoring your home or business.

It's that time of year again - fire season in Maury 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 Maury/Giles Counties. 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!

Minimize the Risk of Fire Danger in Your Home

2/24/2022 (Permalink)

Kitchen cabinets with smoke damage also ceiling with smoke damage Fire damage in a home in Mount Pleasant, TN.

Fire is a word no one likes to think about, much less experience in his or her home in Mount Pleasant, TN. The loss of a home’s structure, contents, and harm to family members in a home fire is a devastating and traumatic experience. The good news is that risks can be minimized with careful fire preparation practices.

Your home and family are unique and so will your preparations be, but there are some basics that should be attended to in order to prevent a blaze from breaking out. Here are some of the basic items to attend to.

Basic Steps to Fire Preparation

  • Make sure the furnace and water heater are in good working order and well-maintained
  • Never operate space heaters or candles near curtains or other flammable materials or leave them unattended
  • With your family, make a plan for escape in the event of a fire and make sure they all now how to call for help
  • Use fire-safe procedures when cooking and don’t allow oil or grease near heating elements or allow to overheat
  • Install an adequate number of smoke detectors throughout the home and keep working fire extinguishers at easy reach.

Involving Your Household

Fire safety is a family event. Together with household members, discuss the steps needed. Let everyone be involved in helping – get them excited about fire preparation and prevention rather than afraid of a potential home fire. Tailor your rules to each person as needed - Don’t allow a teenager to burn an open candle in their bedroom for instance. Make sure any family members who smoke do so safely, not smoking in bed and making sure all cigarettes and any matches are fully extinguished.

An emergency building restoration company in Mount Pleasant, TN, can do much to help repair and salvage your home after a fire. But with proper fire safety practices, and participation from your family, a blazing disaster is much less likely to happen in your home.

Removing Smoke Damage and Odor

12/31/2021 (Permalink)

Ozone generator Ozone cleaning is one of the most effective methods of removing smoke odor.

Removing Smoke Damage and Odor

Restoring a business after a fire doesn't just involve repairing structural damage and replacing lost items. The lingering effects of smoke odor and smoke-related damage can be an additional, unwelcome hindrance to getting your business up and running. While an inexperienced individual can successfully remove evidence of smoke from a building, contacting a professional smoke cleaning service is always advisable. Specialists are experienced in addressing individual problems that might arise and will know how to avoid further damage to your property.

1. Assessing the Damage
Because smoke interacts chemically with many substances, it is essential that you act as quickly as possible to remove smoke residue from all affected surfaces. Inevitably, some items will be beyond repair, so identifying and removing these will significantly speed up the restoration process. Certain complex objects, such as air conditioning units can be restored, but require deep cleaning that may take time and know-how to disassemble.

2. Removing Physical Residues
Manually removing smoke residues is a necessary step for removing smoke odor from surfaces or items. It is important that you understand which smoke cleaning method should be used for which surfaces. Upholstery fabrics, for example, are likely to suffer damage from wet cleaning. Porous materials, on the other hand, are most easily cleared with a wet sponge.

3. Using Proven Chemical Cleaning Methods
Ozone cleaning and thermal fogging are two of the most effective methods of removing smoke odor. When used together, these usually eliminate all evidence of smoke damage from clean interiors. A complete exposure of all rooms will ensure that the job does not need to be repeated in the future.
Your Mount Pleasant, TN fire has probably created a significant strain on your business. With the proper smoke cleaning techniques, you can get back to work. Smoke removal is covered by many insurance plans, so don't skimp on the restoration process. When in doubt, talk to a professional.

The Main Stages of Fire Restoration

12/1/2021 (Permalink)

cabinets of a kitchen damaged by fire, kitchen fire Fire damage in Columbia, TN.

The Main Stages of Fire Restoration

The intense heat of a blaze scorches walls, leaving behind charred remnants of your home in Columbia, TN. The pictures are damaged. Curtains appear ruined. Holes and blackness encompass the entire building. The ash and soot can be hard to face, but, in time, fire restoration can clear it away, getting you back to a better place. The process takes time, so be prepared. Understand the measures taken to ensure your property gets back to the normal you desire.

1. Assess and Protect
The smoke damage could cause issues to your home. Therefore, before patching and washing take place, a remediation team usually arrives to survey the premises, determining the extent of the trouble. Allow the professionals to review the following areas:

  • Exposure to elements
  • Structural integrity
  • Security complications
  • Electrical hazards
  • Soot damage
  • Water saturation

Some of these problems are not visibly evident. After investigating, the crew spends time securing the premises, preventing additional environmental exposures as well as safeguarding the property. This allows for time until the full mitigation begins.

2. Scrub and Clean
The fire restoration company starts by drying everything up. The hoses used to quench the flames flooded wall and floors. Left alone, this could produce mold. Therefore, it's important to air out the space. Dehumidifiers pull up the excess moisture. Then, the workers focus on content cleaning and sanitizing. Some items may need removal, depending on the amount of contamination, so the staff may take out portions of carpeting or the drywall. Using high tech equipment, they can then wash the grey residue, attempting to salvage personal assets.

3. Rebuild and Rest
With damage cleaning underway, the employees tackle construction projects. This includes activities such as mending holes and repainting. They may also replace discarded or ruined goods.
Over time, what seemed lost looks a lot more familiar. The fire restoration experts evaluate the destruction, prepare for rehabilitation, and reconstruct.

How To Choose a Smoke Detector

11/10/2021 (Permalink)

white smoke detector and red warning light It is important to use the right smoke alarm for your residence.

There are many types of smoke detectors. This guide will help you select the best smoke alarm for a residence in Lynnville, TN.

Decide On Detection Technology

Various types of alarms rely on different detection methods.

• Ionization generates an electric current that gets disrupted by smoke particles. These alarms are best for detecting small particles from quick-igniting fires.
• Photoelectric detectors contain a strobe light. Large particles from slow, smoldering fires diffract the light. Use this type of detector in the kitchen to prevent false alarms while cooking.
• Dual-sensor models rely on ionization and photoelectric components
• Air-sampling models circulate air through pipes and contain a sensitive sensor to detect smoke
• Combination alarms monitor smoke and carbon monoxide

You can also choose between standard and smart alarms that connect to Wi-Fi to send push notifications to smartphones in the event of an alarm.

Pick a Power Source

A smoke alarm is only effective when a power source is available. Detectors can draw power from

• Replaceable batteries
• 10-year long-life lithium batteries
• Hardwired electricity

Switch out replaceable batteries once or twice a year. Some building codes require that detectors be hardwired.

Provide Complete Protection

Install standard fire alarms in every bedroom, outside of every sleeping area, and on each floor of a home – including the basement. Smart alarms may detect the presence of smoke in a larger area. You can also hardwire alarms together or use a smart listening device to detect the sound of any smoke detector and send a notification.

Maintain Fire Safety

Test each detector once a month. Switch out replaceable batteries every six months or at least once a year. You can also clean detector vents with compressed air while a unit is disconnected.

It is important to use the right smoke alarm for your residence in Lynnville, TN. If your home sustains damage, hire fire mitigation and restoration specialists.

Remember the 3 S’s After a Fire

10/28/2021 (Permalink)

Smoke on ceiling and kitchen cabinets Smoke and soot damage in Mount Pleasant, TN.

Fire Safety Tips

Experiencing a fire in your home can be distressing, to say the least. The healing process involves your mind, body, spirit – and your finances. Through fire restoration, it is possible to salvage some of your belongings and treasures. Consider guiding your actions by these three S’s—safety, swiftness and smarts.

1. Safety is always first. Upon entering your impaired residence, be aware of unsafe floors, walls and ceilings weakened by fire or water. Do not touch damaged items. Leave smoke cleaning to the experts. Check the gas. If there is any suspected leak, use a wrench to turn off the gas meter. Avoid any wires that look unsafe, and unplug all appliances. Discard any food that has been exposed to smoke.

2. Swift action after a fire is often imperative. Contact your fire insurance company and review your policy. Detail your home’s damage through written documents and photographs. Contact a reputable and expert business that handles fire restoration in Mount Pleasant, TN, as soon as possible to increase your chances of salvaging any items.

3. When it comes to emergencies, it is especially important to keep your smarts. This means that you ensure you are dealing with knowledgeable, trustworthy and professional people every step of the way, from reporting your damage to smoke cleaning and restoring your home. While your dwelling is uninhabitable, report it to police so they can help patrol the area if possible. Cover any broken windows or outside walls exposing the interior. Smarts also includes taking care of yourself. There are many nonprofit organizations and churches in Mount Pleasant, TN, that offer counseling, food and clothing to individuals who have been through similar tragedies.

By remembering to be safe, swift and smart in handling the fire restoration of your home, your mind, body and spirit may be stronger. The steps above can help you take the right action to return to your residence as soon as possible.

Fire Safety Tips for Parents

7/26/2021 (Permalink)

Little boy dressed as a firefighter and holding a hose over his shoulder Do not let young children near open flames.

Parental Fire Safety Tips

In a home fire, you have under five minutes to escape. If a fire occurs at your home in Columbia, TN your first thought is your kids’ safety. Imagine the terror of running room to room searching for them. Now, instead visualize your children prepared for this emergency situation. When you teach your kids about fire escape, you save precious moments that can make a difference.

Prevent

The best way to ensure your kids’ safety is to prevent a fire from happening in the first place:

  • Do not let young children near open flames. This includes fireplaces, grills, fire pits, candles and stovetops.
  • Keep flammable liquids and incendiary sources, such as lighters and matches, out of reach of children.

Prepare

In a fire, be alerted quickly and have a plan of escape:

  • At minimum, keep one functioning smoke detector at each floor of your house, especially in or near the bedrooms. Test the detector monthly while your children are home so they recognize and understand the meaning of the alarm. Change the batteries twice per year.
  • Create a fire escape plan. Find two ways out of each room and agree on an outdoor meet up place. Get escape ladders for the second floor.
  • Teach your children how to call 911.

Practice

Practice techniques to evacuate your home efficiently if necessary:

  • Twice a year, run through the fire escape plan with your children.
  • Practice how to stop, drop and roll if clothing catches on fire.
  • Have your kids practice staying low in a fire. This includes rolling off of the bed and crawling on the floor.
  • Rehearse checking doors for heat and closing them as you go.
  • Repeat, “Get out, stay out,” when practicing to emphasize the importance of not returning inside of the house once out

Prevent, prepare and practice to ensure your kids’ safety in the event of a home fire in Columbia, TN. Once you and your children are safe from harm, make a plan to restore the damage to your home by contacting fire restoration specialist and insurance agent as soon as possible.

4 Leading Causes of Home Fires

7/8/2021 (Permalink)

Background of a coach and three candles lid up on a table Candles look and smell nice, but they are also a fire hazard.

Common Fire Causes

According to the NFPA, firefighters respond to a home fire every 24 seconds somewhere within the country. That’s an alarming statistic considering that most house fires spread uncontrollably, leaving a wake of destruction. While you can never be truly prepared for such a disaster, there are things you could do to prevent it.

Common fire causes in Pulaski, TN includes:

  • Unattended kitchen appliances
  • Heating
  • Careless smoking in bedrooms
  • Candles

1. Cooking Equipment

Kitchen fires account for 48% of all home fire incidents in the nation. That comes as no surprise as most open flames and heating elements live in this room. Usually, the fire starts when you walk out or get distracted, then the food overcooks until it catches fire. This flame spreads to any flammable items nearby and results in a nasty flare.

2. Heating

Most people are cautious in the kitchen, but they sometimes fail to do proper care and maintenance on heating. These devices need inspection at least once a year to make sure they are in good condition. Also, keep all portable heaters at a safe distance from any flammable items such as curtains, books and furniture.

3. Smoking in Bedroom

Smoking is the last thing you should do in a bedroom. A cigarette butt that is not properly put off could stay alit for a couple of hours. That poses a grave danger considering that it’s the same room you keep all your flammable stuff such as beddings, clothes and mattresses.

4.Candles

Candles look and smell nice, but they are also a fire hazard. If the open flame comes into contact with the table cloth or topples over when no one is looking, you might be in for an expensive fire cleaning project. It is better to use flameless candles if you have kids and pets in the house.
A home fire can incur thousands of dollars in fire damage, even when you manage to put it out before it spreads further. That’s why you need to know where it starts and take the necessary precautions.

Our Staff Explains The Vital Steps We Take To Restore Your Fire Damaged Home In Columbia

6/4/2021 (Permalink)

SERVPRO tech in PPE cleaning a fire damaged property in Columbia, TN We can help with any sized fire damage!

Important Steps When Restoring Fire Damage In Columbia, TN

A fire can start from any point in a home including the kitchen, living room or even a crawlspace like an attic. Putting the fire out in time helps save the property, but it still leaves a considerable burden of cleaning up the debris from partly burnt materials and smoke residues. We offer professional restoration service that lifts this burden from the homeowner.

Separating items after fire damage in Columbia, TN is a crucial step in the early stages. From a casual look at items covered in soot, dirt, and grime after the incident, you might think of throwing everything out. However, proper cleaning helps save most of the items. Even items scorched by flames can be saved through advanced restorative cleaning steps. Our SERVPRO technicians separate damaged items into salvageable, unsalvageable categories. In case of a move-out, we use electronic CCIS, Content Claim Inventory Service, which further classifies items based on their location in the house. Such classification improves the outcome because we can easily tell which items require more effort based on how the fire affected the room they were.

Certain sections in a structure like light fixtures, cabinets, attics, and walls require special attention. Even if the wall surface is not damaged, it does not mean everything else in the wall cavity is intact. Smoke may filter-in leaving the insulation compromised or full of smoke odor. Our SERVPRO technicians may replace the top 3 to 4 inches of the insulation to address these problems. Cleaning light fixtures such as chandeliers can be challenging because of the decorative trim. For light to moderate residues, we opt for hand cleaning. We also use other approaches such as low-pressure steam cleaning or submerging in an ultrasonic machine.

If there is damage in an attic, restoration can be a bit challenging. Most of the surfaces involved are porous while the wood may have irregular shapes which make it harder to remove residues. The limited space compounds the situation further. Having a sufficient workforce helps our SERVPRO teams to deal with these problems quickly.

Whichever part of your property is affected by fire in Columbia, Spring Hill, and Pulaski, SERVPRO of Maury / Giles Counties can help restore it. You can reach us at (931) 388-4248 any time.

What Fire Extinguisher Is Best for My Home?

3/30/2021 (Permalink)

Fire extinguishers isolated on white background. Various types of extinguishers. 3d illustration. Avoid a home fire by learning how to use a fire extinguisher.

Keeping a fire extinguisher in your Spring Hill, TN, home can save you and your property from a small fire. If you're wondering which kind to choose, here is some information about different types of extinguishers.

Extinguisher Classes

Each class of extinguisher fights a different type of fire:

Class A: Wood, paper and trash
Class B: Grease, oil-based liquids and gasoline
Class C: Electrical equipment
Class D: Flammable metals
Class K: Animal and vegetable oils used in cooking

Household extinguishers are rated A, B or C. On the label, the numbers that precede the letters give the rating of the extinguisher's effectiveness against that type of fire. An extinguisher with a 4-B rating, for example, is more effective against a grease fire than one rated 2-B. Higher effectiveness usually means a higher-priced extinguisher. There is no number designation for Class C.

Extinguisher Sizes
You can choose your extinguisher size based on where you will use it. A 5-pound extinguisher is suited for a typical home fire and is easy to pick up and use. A 10-pound fire extinguisher is a good choice for the garage, where a fire may grow before you see it. You can also find stove-top extinguishers that mount above the range.

Best Extinguisher Locations
Safety experts recommend you keep an extinguisher on each floor of your home for maximum fire preparedness. The kitchen is an ideal place because of the enhanced risk of fire in that room. Keep the extinguisher where household members can reach it quickly and easily. The best location is near an exit if the fire gets out of control and you must evacuate.
If you've experienced a home fire and have been through the process of fire restoration, you know that prevention is the best policy. If you have not had a home fire, you can take steps to avoid one by learning to use your fire extinguisher and equipping your home with the correct sizes and types.

3 Tips for Preventing a Potentially Catastrophic Dryer Fire

12/8/2020 (Permalink)

Horizontal photo of female hand taking the lint out from dirty air filter of the dyer machine Lint fire is the most common type of dryer fire

Ways To Avoid A Lint Fire

Did you know that lint, that gray substance that comes off your clothing in dryers, carries the potential to start fires? According to The Spruce, over 20,000 fires each year may be attributed to it. Lint fire is the most common type of dryer fire. Lint is actually a combustible material. There are ways to avoid a lint catastrophe that may cause fire damage you may require a professional cleanup and restoration company from Columbia, TN, to help repair.


1. Remove Lint Regularly
Cleaning the lint filter/trap each time you put in a load is an important step. Clogged screens are dangerous fire hazards. Another important and often neglected activity that can help prevent a lint fire is cleaning out the dryer's exhaust vent. Buildups of dirt, dust and lint in these areas are also risks. Follow these steps for cleaning out the vent:

  • Disconnect the dryer
  • Use a brush and cloth to clean away dirt and lint from the area where the exhaust connects to the dryer
  • Clean the connecting hose/pipe
  • Clean the exterior vent
  • Reconnect the dryer


2. Keep Other Combustibles Away
Materials like cleansers that are also flammable should be stored away from the dryer. Sweeping out dust from beneath and around the dryer is also a good precaution.


3. Pay Attention to Signs of Problems
The state of your clothing after drying may indicate an obstruction like a plugged up vent. Two signs that you need to check the exhaust vent and the duct connecting to it for excess lint or dust are clothes that are too cold and clothes that are too hot after being removed from the dryer. A burning odor is another warning sign.
It is important to keep your dryer's lint trap and exhaust vent clean of lint and dirt, as well as not ignoring signs of issues and removing anything that might contribute to sparking a fire away from the dryer itself. These actions can help prevent a possibly devastating lint fire.

Understanding Commercial Insurance Coverage

11/11/2020 (Permalink)

Commercial Insurance Commercial insurance is a vital necessity for any business, no matter how big or small

It Is Important To Understand The Basics Of Coverage

Focusing on all aspects of your Pulaski, TN, business means there is a lot on your plate. A portion of that should also be considering the what-ifs. If something unexpected happens, such as a fire or storm damage, commercial insurance may provide peace of mind that your business will be restored back to normal as quickly as possible. While every policy may be different, it is important to understand the basics of coverage.

Standard Coverage
In general, property insurance often covers more than a homeowner's policy since there is much more happening on the property to keep the business going. In most cases, it will help pay for damage to the building, equipment, tools, inventory, furniture and personal property. That often includes costs associated hiring a fire damage and water restoration professional. Scenarios that will likely be covered include:

  • Damage to computers or equipment from an accidental fire.
  • The building is struck by lightning.
  • The property is burglarized or vandalized.

It is important to understand that this type of coverage is not all-encompassing. It typically does not cover situations such as an employee injury, a cyberattack or breach, or vehicles used by the business. In those cases, having additional commercial auto and liability insurance will provide the extra peace of mind but at an added cost.

Cost Factors
Commercial insurance is available with an array of options and add-ons that may be beneficial depending on the type of business. Any add-ons will increase the price, but that may be necessary if located in or near a floodplain. Standard insurance does not cover flooding, so additional flood coverage will be necessary. Other facts that will impact cost include the location of the business, coverage limits, deductible selected and value of the covered property.
Commercial insurance is a vital necessity for any business, no matter how big or small. Being prepared for the unexpected can help minimize downtime and get operations back to normal faster.

Top 5 Leading Causes of Home Fires

9/18/2020 (Permalink)

Candle lit up The majority of candle fires occur when household objects are too close to the flame

5 Leading Causes of Home Fires

Fire is extremely dangerous and can quickly consume your home if you're not careful. According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), a fire department must respond to a home fire somewhere in the United States approximately every 24 seconds. Avoid letting your home in Mount Pleasant, TN, become part of that statistic by studying the top five causes of residential fires.

1. Cooking Fires
A kitchen fire is most likely to break out when you leave your oven or stove unattended. It's important to remember that these appliances create open flames and must be monitored carefully. Home cooking fires cause approximately $1 billion in property damages, 4,320 fire injuries, and 550 deaths each year.

2. Candle Fires
Candles may seem completely safe, which makes it easy for people to forget that they still host open flames. The majority of candle fires occur when household objects, such as curtains and other types of furniture, are kept too close to the flame.

3. Smoking
Smoking is one of the most heinous culprits when it comes to home fire causes and deaths, accounting for about 23% of all residential fire deaths. This often occurs while someone is carelessly smoking indoors and their cigarette or cigar catches on nearby combustible objects.

4. Fireworks
Unsurprisingly, residential fires caused by fireworks peak around holidays, such as the 4th of July. These typically occur when fireworks are set off too close to home structures, or when hot debris from the explosion falls into dry brush.

5. Lightning
Lightning fires are most common during storm season and account for approximately $451 million in property damage every year. Lightning fires often tend to be larger and more dangerous than ones caused by humans.
These are only five of the leading home fire causes in the United States. There are countless other ways a fire could break out in your home, so it's important to stay vigilant and take the proper precautions. Contact fire remediation experts for more information, or if you need fire cleaning assistance following an incident.

Call Our Certified Technicians To Handle Your Columbia Fire Damage Restoration

5/21/2020 (Permalink)

Your Columbia Home Smells like Smoke Thanks to Fire Damage!

Most homeowners experience accidents in their home at some point or another. These disruptions of daily life are usually the result of smaller things, like a grease fire that starts in the kitchen and suddenly there are flames to put out and a need to call the fire department. Regardless of its source, the smoke and fire damage resulting from that small event can leave you at a loss when returning your home to normal.

When your home in Columbia falls victim to fire damage, it is best to reach out to an expert team such as SERVPRO. Our technicians are IICRC-certified and receive continuous instruction on the latest techniques and equipment available for the restoration of homes such as yours. Most importantly, our team is available 24/7 to respond to your call and begin the time-sensitive task of removing any remains of the fire, including the subsequent damage firefighting agents may have caused.

Based on our training and field experience, our SERVPRO team can observe the path of the smoke and soot to assess each surface and determine the best cleaning agent for it. Most importantly, our team can determine where the foul smoke smell resides and work accordingly to eliminate it from your home. If your air vents and ducts are spreading the smell throughout your home, we can install specialized filters and air purifying equipment to improve the air quality and return it to normal.

Many times, homeowners attempt to restore their furniture and belongings themselves using store-bought solutions. Although these can be helpful for some things, you also risk worsening the damage if it is not the right solution for the surface you are treating. A professional team such as SERVPRO can make an educated decision for each affected area to optimize its cleaning efforts and minimize your damages.

Even if a fire to your home appears to be of little consequence, reach out to SERVPRO of Maury/Giles Counties at (931) 388-4248 and let us leave your home “Like it never even happened.”

Click here to discover what your parks can offer you.