Recent Fire Damage Posts

Types of Damage Caused During a House Fire

2/4/2019 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Types of Damage Caused During a House Fire Fire and water damage in Sebastian, FL

Types of Damage Caused During a House Fire

A house fire can be devastating and cause a lot of damage to your home. Along with fire damage, there are other types of damage that will require remediation as well. Here are a few things that you can expect if you experience a fire in your  Sebastian, FL home.

1. Damage Caused by Fire
The most obvious and expected type of damage is that caused by fire. A fire can cause significant damage to your home and belongings. You may end up with shattered windows as well as missing walls and roofing. Furniture and objects may require repairs or replacing.

2. Damage Caused by Water
Water damage might not be something that you would usually think of during a fire, but depending on the severity of the blaze, you could end up with quite a bit of it. When firefighters use a fire hose to put out the flames, it can fill your home with a lot of water which can cause damage of its own. You can call a remediation service to remove the water from your home and perform any needed repairs.

3. Damage Caused by Smoke
Even if the fire damage to your home is not extensive, you might have a lot of smoke damage that needs cleaning. Smoke can permeate your house and belongings even if the fire only affected a small area. Some evidence of smoke damage includes discolored walls or ceilings and a strong odor. If not removed properly, the smell of smoke can remain in your home for a long time after the fire occurred. There might be ash or soot present as well.

Because there can be several different kinds of damage after a fire, it is important that you call an emergency restoration service as soon as you can. They can help repair the fire damage as well as any other damage your home has suffered.

Safe Use of Candles in the Home

12/23/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Safe Use of Candles in the Home Place candles on a surface that's flat

Ways to Make Sure You're Using Candles Safely in Your Home

Every year in Palm Bay, FL, candle fire accidents damage homes and cause injuries. The necessary structural repairs often require professional fire restoration and smoke cleanup. These mishaps can be easily prevented by following a few common-sense tips. Here are some ways to make sure you’re using candles safely in your home.

1. Don't Leave Candles Unattended

Always be aware of where a candle is burning. Don't ever light a candle and leave the room without checking on it periodically. Watch how the air behaves around the candle; if the flame is shifting around, move the candle to a place where it stays steady.

2. Find a Safe Place

If you have pets or children, keep candles in a place that they can't reach. If placed on a low shelf or table, they can be knocked over easily and cause a candle fire. When not in use, candles, matches and lighters should be safely stored away in place that children can't get access to.

3. Secure the Candles

Place candles on a surface that's flat, sturdy and free of clutter. The surface should be heat-resistant as well. Keep the candle at least one foot away from any materials that might be flammable. If using candle holders, make sure to have a variety of sizes on hand. They should all have a secure base that can't be overturned easily.

4. Be Safe with Flames

Make sure your hair and any loose clothes are well out of the way when lighting candles. When it has burned down to about an inch, extinguish the candle and throw it away. It should never burn down so low that it's close to the candle holder.

Bedrooms are a no-go zone for candles. If you fall asleep and leave a candle burning unattended, there's a much higher risk of a fire. If there is an oxygen tank in use anywhere in the house, don't use candles at all.

It's easy to burn candles safely in your home. By following the tips outlined above, you can enjoy their light and warmth without having to worry about starting a candle fire.

3 Things To Know About Natural Gas and Your Home

10/19/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage 3 Things To Know About Natural Gas and Your Home Your fire department in Palm Bay,FL can locate and turn off the gas source

A gas fire can be a scary thing in Palm Bay, FL. Between the destructive nature of a fire and the potential for a gas explosion, many homeowners worry about what to do when they smell gas. The following information may help.

Know What To Do If You Smell Gas

In the event you smell natural gas there are several safety steps you can follow:

  • Check your stove and ensure all burners are completely off
  • Open your doors and windows to ventilate your home
  • Use a flashlight to see
  • Keep all your electrical appliances off
  • Get out of your home and call the fire department
  • If safe to do so, turn off your gas meter

Know Where Your Meter is Located

One way to help prevent a gas fire or explosion is to turn off the gas flow to your home. Gas meters are typically located outside the home. This allows the gas to be safely turned off when needed. In most cases, a wrench is all that is necessary for proper closure. Knowing where your meter is and how it works can allow you to turn your gas off yourself in a non-emergency situation, so the source of the gas smell can be safely investigated.

Know Who To Call in an Emergency

In the event your home does have a fire from gas, or even if you just smell gas and can’t locate the source, it’s best to get everyone out and call 911. Your local fire department can often locate and turn off the gas source, or put the fire out safely, hopefully before an explosion occurs. Once the fire is out, you can call a fire damage professional for any cleanup and repair needs.

Knowing what to do if you smell gas can help you prevent a gas fire from happening in your home. Remember to follow the above safety steps and call your Palm Bay, FL, fire department for help.

Fire Damage Melbourne - How Much Does Fire Damage Restoration Cost?

9/24/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Fire Damage Melbourne - How Much Does Fire Damage Restoration Cost? Fire damage restoration cost vary, but there are steps to take to minimize the damage.

Home fires can cause a massive amount of property damage that cannot be easily restored due to soot, smoke and other contaminants and factors. Water damages caused by efforts to extinguish residential fires will also have a significant impact on the amount of money that must be paid for the successful restoration of your home. It is important to note, however, that these costs can often be reduced if homeowners take fast action to secure remediation services as soon as fires have been put out and properties have been cleared for entry.

The Average Cost Of Having Fire Damage Repaired

* If working with a fire damage restoration service in Melbourne is necessary, these repairs can range between $2,000 and $50,000 depending upon the magnitude of the damages in your home.

* Fire damage costs can vary quite a bit according to the value of damaged goods and the size of the fire among other factors. As per the Home Fire Sprinkler Coalition, fire damage repairs can cost in excess of $40,000 when homes lack sprinklers as compared to just $2,500 for homes that have sprinklers in place.

Low-End Fire Restoration Estimates:

* Repair costs of $2,000 or lower

High-End Fire Restoration Estimates:

* Repair costs of $50,000 or higher

What You Can Expect When Using Fire Damage Restoration Companies:

* If you have a fire or home insurance plan in place, let your insurance investigator review the scene and take pictures of all damages before you attempt to move any items or clean up.

* When possible, ventilate areas where water was used to extinguish fire as this will allow damp or saturated surfaces and items to start drying out even before the remediation service has arrived.

* Don't try to clean carpets or any other items without professional assistance. You will not be able to clean these things thoroughly and you could wind up causing more harm than good in your self-directed efforts.

* Look for reputable fire and water damage restoration companies in your area.

Extra Services?

* If the fire has been extinguished with water, dry rot and mold can appear quickly if damp or wet areas are left unchecked. This will likely require additional services and costs for mold remediation and dry rot repairs.

* Soot, smoke and ash can create a number of difficulties. The smell of smoke can permeate your flooring, walls and various items throughout the home and will prove difficult to remove. Soot and ash can also adhere to surfaces throughout the home and the chemical byproducts and acids that are found in these burned materials could create additional property damages.

SERVPRO of South Brevard is fully certified water removal staff can perform a complete damage assessment to your home of office, and then recommend and follow the industries standards to get your water removal restoration repaired properly available 24 hours a day.

Why You Should Secure a Professional Smoke and Fire Damage Restoration Service for Melbourne

9/24/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Why You Should Secure a Professional Smoke and Fire Damage Restoration Service for Melbourne Keep These Flames Away from Your House

Fire Damage Resulting in Smoke and Soot Can be Cleaned by SERVPRO of South Brevard.

Although there are many challenging factors that homeowners have to deal with in Melbourne following a major event, fire damage, and smoke removal are two of the most difficult. However, tackling the smoke damage removal process is critically important after the fire. In many cases, homeowners are inclined to reenter their home directly after the fire for the purpose of checking the fire damage. The attempt to start the cleanup process may feel like a pressing matter, but the best course of action is to call in SERVPRO to start the complicated restoration process. There are several reasons why doing so is important. Here are two:

Smoke Damage Restoration Requires Special Equipment

One of the reasons that you should leave smoke damage removal,the result of fire damage, to the professionals is that thoroughly completing the job necessitates the use of specific, industrial-grade equipment. Industry experts from SERVPRO know that smoke and soot can seep into your walls, carpeting, clothing and furniture infusing an odor and film that are extremely difficult to remove. Health issues are another matter that won't be discussed here. Masking a persistent odor problem is not a professional solution. The best methodology for eliminating these odors is thermal fogging using specific products for absorption and removal. These technicians from SERVPRO are IICRC trained. Therefore, the correct procedures are followed.

Smoke Damage Restoration Requires Industry Expertise

In addition to possessing the specialized equipment necessary to complete the smoke damage restoration process, these technicians have the experience necessary to expedite the project. It is necessary to understand what types of smoke and soot are present and which chemicals will be required to remove them. An example would be the presence of smoke odor coming from the wood. This specific type of smoke odor requires the use of cleaning products that differ from what one would use for smoke odor resulting from plastics. If you are unfamiliar with the kind of smoke odor and residue present, you can risk further damages to possessions by improper cleaning. Fortunately, smoke damage remediation professionals from SERVPRO possess the expertise necessary to complete this aspect of the restoration process quickly and correctly.

Fire damage to your Melbourne home can result in many ancillary effects. Although dealing with smoke damage removal can be frustrating and difficult, obtaining professional help from SERVPRO can simplify the process so that you witness the speedy recovery of your home to its pre-fire and smoke damage condition. We're pleased to be a team of trained technicians who use the most cutting edge equipment and customized methodologies to get the job done fast and save you money.

Locally Owned, with National Resources

SERVPRO of South Brevard is locally owned and operated so we are part of the Melbourne community too. When you have a water or flood emergency, we’re already nearby and ready to help.

We use specialized equipment and techniques to remove smoke and soot from ceilings, walls, and other surfaces. Call us for help. (321) 777-5131

Cleaning the Office After a Fire Next Door

8/31/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Cleaning the Office After a Fire Next Door Fire damage in Palm Bay, FL

The fire in the office next door has been put out, and everyone has left. You have the incident number in hand and remind yourself you need to get a report for the insurance company as soon as possible. As you look around at the smoke-filled room in Palm Bay, FL, you are probably wondering how long your business will be closed and how it will affect your employees. The last thing you want to think about is what got damaged, what needs dry-cleaning, and what is a total loss.

Here are some basic cleaning guidelines to help you get started in your cleaning efforts.

  1. When you walk through ash, it reenters the air, so always wear a mask when in a soot or ash covered room.
  2. Wear long sleeved shirts, extended gloves, and long pants to prevent ash from touching your skin.
  3. Contact a professional fire cleaning service and request content cleaning help.
  4. Take pictures as you work through the office – lots of pictures.
  5. Open windows, but don’t use fans to remove the heavy smoke odor because the breeze will disturb the ash and soot.
  6. Sort items into piles that can be cleaned with water, should be discarded, need dry-cleaning, and you simply don’t know.
  7. Remove window coverings and pictures from the walls.
  8. Keep employees out of the office to prevent moving the soot and ash around.
  9. Do not turn on electronic equipment because the soot and ash are probably inside the devices.
  10. Notify the cleaning service if the adjacent fire was a grease fire or chemical fire to allow for the necessary special cleaning steps.

When the cleaning professionals arrive, make sure to request an itemized list of their services to use for insurance purposes. If your office is large, ask about content storage until the items can be correctly cleaned. If items require dry-cleaning, ask about available professional cleaning services or freezer storage. Don’t forget that smoke and ash can soak into paper, wood, and paint, so your office may be closed for a few days.

Holiday Ready? Safety is Key

12/21/2017 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Holiday Ready? Safety is Key Don't let your holidays go up in smoke! Be smart, be prepared, be safe.

Christmas trees aren't the only item you'll need to be careful with around the Holidays. Decorative house lights, candles, and holiday decorations bring joy and cheer to the holiday season but if not used with caution your holidays may go from festive to frightening. Fire Departments say every two out of five home fires are from holiday decorative candles. Reduce the fire risk in your home by simple following these tips. 

Holiday Safety Tips

  • Make sure all outdoor light connectors are away from metal rain gutters and off the ground.
  • Use only a single extension cord that can reach your home's outlet without being too long and being tangled.
  • Make sure lights are off when you go out and before you turn in for the night.
  • To lessen the chance of a fire hazard, purchase a freshly cut tree.
  • Make sure to keep your tree at least three feet away from any heat source.
  • Water the tree every day, and remove it from your home after Christmas or once it becomes dry. 
  • Don't burn Christmas tree branches or wrapping paper in your fireplace.
  • Keep candles at least 12 inches away from anything that could burn. 
  • Consider using battery-operated flameless candles, which can look, smell and feel like real candles.
  • If you do use lit candles, make sure they are in stable holders and place them where they cannot be knocked down easily.

Locally Owned, with National Resources

SERVPRO of South Brevard is locally owned and operated so we are part of the Melbourne Beach, Florida community too. When you have a fire, flooding or water emergency, we’re already nearby and ready to help.

As fire and water damage specialists, we have the experience, the expertise, and the advanced training that enables us to get your property restored quickly and thoroughly.  Please call (321) 777-5131

Florida Wildfire Evacuation: Steps to Take Before Leaving

5/17/2017 (Permalink)

If you are in a situation where authorities advise you to evacuate your residence due to an approaching wildfire, do so immediately. If authorities say you have some time before evacuating your premises, there are some tasks you can perform to help the firefighters and could help protect your home.

Remember the five P’s of evacuation

People, Prescriptions, Papers, Personal needs, and Priceless items.

Protect Your Home

? Turn ON the lights outside and in every room to make the house more visible in heavy smoke.

? Close all windows, vents, doors, and fireplace screens. By doing this, it will help reduce drafts in your house and reduce heat.

? In case you lose power, disconnect automatic garage door openers so the door can be opened by hand.

?Remove all flammable curtains and window treatments in case windows brake. Also move flammable furniture towards the center of your home, away from all windows and sliding glass doors.

? Fill garbage cans, tubs, or other large containers with water. Also shut off natural gas from the source, and move propane or fuel oil supplies away from the house.

How to Put Out a Grease Fire

2/10/2017 (Permalink)

Has there been a time that you planned to cook an AMAZING dinner, but you found yourself cooking up a disaster and producing more smoke than the great aroma you were expecting? At any point during the cooking process, a grease fire can occur. These fires can quickly become devastating and potentially fatal.

A fire only requires THREE components to burn: oxygen, heat, and fuel. The safest and smartest way to kill a grease fire is by removing one of the components. Oxygen will be the fastest to remove because it takes time for the electric burner to cool down and it’s not safe to remove the fuel (grease).

 

Here are the CORRECT steps to kill a grease fire:

  1. Turn off the electricity supply to the stove top.
  2. Eliminate the oxygen supply.

        - Put on kitchen mitts so you don’t burn yourself

        - Grab the lid that fits the pot/pan and slide it across the top of the pot/pan

          Or

        -  If you do not have a lid, you can use a cookie sheet and repeat the step above

  1. Call the fire department.
  2. Call SERVPRO and we can come clean your mess up and make it look “Like it never even happened”.

Alternative methods:

        - Fire extinguisher

        - Pour a large amount of baking soda on the flames

        - Use a soaking wet cloth, and carefully drape the cloth over the pot/pan

 

Here is what NOT to do:

  1. Use water to put out the flames.

         - Water is heavier than oil; therefore the water will sink to the bottom. This causes the water to rapidly heat up, and an explosion to occur.

  1. Swat the flames with a cloth
  2. Throw flour on the flames (flour is combustible)
  3. Move the pot/pan (not even to another stove burner)

And Remember!  If you can’t handle the heat, get out of the kitchen.

8 Tips for Fire Damage

12/29/2016 (Permalink)

Fires can be extremely devastating to your home and business. When a fire occurs, and damage is done, it can be extremely stressful and frustrating to figure out what to do next. The most important thing to remember is to stay calm and read these tips on what to do next.

Call SERVPRO

After the trucks leave, your property will likely suffer from not only fire and smoke damage, but also widespread water damage and flooding from firefighting efforts. That is where SERVPRO can help you get your property back in good shape. SERVPRO professionals who are specialized in fire and water damage restoration will quickly clean up and restore your home and belongings. They also remove the pervasive smoke odor and deep-clean soot from upholstery and carpet. Call as quickly as you can, as the longer you wait, the worse the damage will become.

Keep Hands Clean

With all of the residue from the fire laying around, it is a good idea to keep your hands as clean as possible by washing them and avoiding touching any soot or dust with your bare hands. If you have to touch something that has been burned in the fire, use protective gloves to protect your skin and avoid spreading any of the residue around. The soot and dust will spread very easily and can be very dangerous if it gets into your eyes or mouth, so keep your hands as clean as possible to avoid any health hazards.

Remove Pets

When your home is still waiting to be cleaned and restored by SERVPRO, it is highly recommended that you keep all pets away from the damage for their safety and for yours. You do not want your pets tracking any soot or debris around and you definitely do not want them getting any of it in their mouths. The remnants of the fire can be extremely dangerous if animals consume it and if it gets onto their paws or fur, they bring it with them everywhere they go. The best you can remove them from the area, the better for everyone’s safety.

Empty Freezer and Refrigerator

If the fire damage is extensive enough that your power is turned off, remember to empty your freezer and refrigerator. This will save time and maintenance down the road when you do not have to deal with rotting and stinky food that was left in the kitchen. Beyond the refrigerator, it is safe to say that removing all food that was in the presence of the fire should be disposed of for safety purposes. It is not safe to consume food that has been touched by flames or smoke and can cause damage to your health if eaten.

Avoid Electrical Appliances

After a fire takes place in a home, any electrical appliances in the area should be avoided. The wires in electrical appliances can become extremely dangerous if they have been exposed to any flames or smoke. It is best to not touch these appliances and let the SERVPRO professionals dispose of the appliances properly so that no further damage occurs and additional fires do not start.

Have Dishes and Eating Utensils Assessed

Eating food off of any contaminated dishware or utensils can cause severe illness. Avoid this by having your items properly inspected by a SERVPRO professional restoration specialist. If the items are not able to be restored, they need to be disposed of properly so that they do not interfere with the health of anyone who comes in contact with them.

Change Air Filters

It is important to change the air filters after a house fire to avoid spreading smoke around even more. During a fire, smoke can drift through household ducts and become trapped. Adding a new filter into the mix can help trap the odor and reduce the dispersion of it throughout your home. If not properly removed, smoke odor can recur from time to time, especially during any warm or damp days.

Make a List

Making a list of all items that you believe have been permanently damaged or ruined by a house fire can help assist your insurance company with your claim. If it is possible, take as many pictures as possible of the damaged areas and make detailed notes of what has been lost. SERVPRO professionals will do their best to restore any damaged items such as dvd players, clothing, and furniture. If there are items that are beyond salvation, making your insurance company aware of the damage is the best method of having those items replaced or compensated.

The Process of Restoring Smoke Damage

8/15/2016 (Permalink)

When a fire occurs in your home, it’s not the flames that do all of the damage, as there are contributions from smoke. The smoke odor removal process should begin quickly after the flames are put out and before any normal cleaning or repairs to ensure proper removal of the odor. To ensure that the deodorization is successful, a three-step process to control the odor should take place. Any less than these three steps could result in an ineffective removal of the smoke odor.

Taking care of deodorizing any smoke damage or areas that have been affected by smoke offers many advantages. These advantages include starting off the cleanup process with positive steps, it creates a more effective working environment for the restoration crews, and they can evaluate the effectiveness of the solution used prior to moving on to other restoration services.

First Step

The first step in treating smoke odor that may have been cause by a fire is treating the walls, floors, or ceilings. Any of these barriers that have been damaged by the smoke will need to be treated by a special spray. During and following the fire, smoke molecules may have escaped into the air in the room. The purpose of the spray is to limit the amount of these molecules that get into the air.

This spray will work by creating a barrier in the smoke which will stop any potential smoke molecules that otherwise could get through from doing so. It works by using penetrants and emulsifiers to slow down or stop the odor evaporation process. Any areas that have been damaged by the smoke will need to be soaked in the spray. Any porous materials that has absorbed the smoke will absorb the spray in the same way.

Second Step

The second step in controlling and removing smoke odors that are emanating from the fire is to control the airborne particles that have been released into the air or have escaped the spray during the first step. This second solution is designed to release an odor counteractant vapor that will enable it to manage the smoke particles that are in the air.

This solution will not be used on surfaces that feature plastic, have been painted, or varnish as the qualities that make it so effective with airborne particles may negatively affect these surfaces. However, this solution can be used on attics, crawl spaces, and areas above suspended ceilings.

Once the first two steps have been completed, the results of the applications will be evaluated to see whether or not it was effective. If the only smell is that of the counteractant, that means the process of successful. If there is still a smoke odor existing, a stronger solution will be needed.

Third Step

The final step in the process is thermal fogging. This step will replicate the characteristics of a fire such as heat. Due to the effects of this step, the area will have a mandatory evacuation. Those involved in the fogging will also be required to wear special protective equipment to ensure their safety. Due to the fact that the process replicates the characteristics of a fire, the local fire department and other local authorities must be notified about what is occurring.

Additionally, danger signs will be posted following the fogging. This serves many purposes which include adding professionalism to the jobsite, meeting legal requirements, reducing the risk of injury, serving as an advertisement for the public, and providing emergency information that may be needed such as phone numbers.

One of the biggest causes of damage that occurs as a result of a house fire is smoke damage. To ensure that the smoke is safely removed, a three-step process should be completed. By the end of the process, all remnants of smoke odors should have been removed. To ensure that this process is completed thoroughly and safely, allowing for the cleaning and painting stages of the restoration to take place, only professionals should be involved in the removal of smoke odors. If you have suffered a fire in your home and are looking for professionals to handle the job, call on SERVPRO to restore your home to its original state.

What to Do After a Fire

7/18/2016 (Permalink)

If you suffer a fire in your home, putting the flames out is just the beginning. As time goes on, the smoke and soot that has accumulated has the potential to cause more damage. To prevent any further damage from occurring, you should contact the professionals at SERVPRO who have the expertise to help prevent any further damage. But, while you should contact the professionals immediately, every second counts and you may want to take steps to help prevent further damage from occurring.

Ash and Smoke Damage

Much of the damage that will be caused by a house fire isn’t from the flames or the searing heat but from the ash and smoke that comes with it. Ash and smoke can cause extensive corrosion, etching, discoloration, and powerful odors around the house. The damage starts with the discoloring of most surfaces. Within minutes, anything that is made of plastic or was close to the fire will start to discolor. Within hours, fiberglass and finishes on any appliances will begin to yellow and metals may tarnish. Within a few days, walls, clothing, and upholstery will permanently discolor, wood and vinyl will need refinishing or replacement, and metals will start corroding. Due to the quick progression of damage that can occur to most of the objects around the house, you’ll need to contact the IICRC-certified professionals at SERVPRO.

Get Permission to Re-Enter the Home

When a fire occurs in your home, you should use your escape plan to get out as quickly as possible. And before re-entering the house, wait until you receive permission from the fire marshal. The soot and dirty water that collects in the home can contain dangerous bacteria. It’s important to allow the professionals to handle this before re-entering the home. Further, coming into contact with fire damaged materials can be hazardous. You may want to enter the house as soon as possible to assess the damage but waiting for the fire marshal to give you permission to re-enter can save further trouble.

Tips to Prevent Further Damage

Open Windows to Ventilate

Ventilation is key to the restoration of a home after a fire. Firefighters ventilate to remove smoke, heat, and fire gases but you can do it to create a better environment and prevent the possibility of any further damage occurring. It’s important to know that improper ventilation or the air being delivered at the wrong time can be hazardous. That’s another reason why it’s important to wait for the fire marshal to give you permission to re-enter the home.

To help circulate the air around the house, consider installing a fan. The firefighters may have caused significant water damage in the home in their attempt to put out the fire. Cold air typically is more effective than warm air at removing moisture from the home so if there has been substantial water damage and the weather is warm, the windows may need to be kept shut and a dehumidifier may be the best option.

If the weather is cold outside, you’re heating system is operating and the cold air will usually help to remove any moisture. If this is the situation, you’ll want to change the furnace filter daily until it shows that there is no soot in it.

Why Professionals Should Exclusively Handle Smoke and Fire Damage

3/10/2016 (Permalink)

If you have suffered fire damage you may think you can read a few manuals and be able to clean the mess up yourself. But if you attempt that, you may be costing yourself valuable possessions and thousands of dollars in additional restoration fees. Fire clean up is a complicated process that should only be handled by professionals.

Just because the firefighters are gone doesn’t mean that everything is safe. The building is not back to normal until professionals have restored it. The process sounds simple but the job requires a lot of experience and manpower to adequately restore a burnt building. A homeowner should never attempt this. 

While the fire may be the immediate danger, the remnants of the fire will continue to affect the house. If ash and smoke is left untreated, it can cause extended corrosion, etching and discoloration, and powerful lingering odors. Professionals that have the right training and experience can stop this from happening before it becomes a major problem if they’re called in a timely manner.

Many companies claim to have the ability to restore buildings that have suffered fire damage but only those that have the right training and certification, like SERVPRO, should be considered. The agency that oversees these qualified companies is the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC). To earn their certification, registrants must complete extensive coursework preparing them for on-site restoration.

If professionals are called in immediately, they can clean up and restore the building to its original state but if not, they may not be able to salvage all the damage. The first thing that ash does is to discolor most surfaces. Within minutes, anything that’s made of plastic or was located near the fire will begin discoloration. Fiberglass and finishes that are on appliances will begin to yellow within hours of the fire being extinguished. Also within the first few hours, metals may begin to tarnish. After the first few days, the ash will cause the permanent discoloration of walls, clothing, and upholstery. All wood or vinyl furnishings throughout the building will need to be either refinished or replaced and metal will start corroding within the first few days.

The state of the building’s appliances and furnishings will be significantly impacted during the first few days if professionals are not immediately called in to clean up and restore the building but that’s not the only trouble that can be avoided. The cost of restoration will be significantly less if you call them as soon as possible. This is because you may need to replace metals, the carpets will be permanently discolored, and glass will be severely etched and need to be replaced. It’s possible that odors that have been caused by the fire may still be present and may be intense enough that it may distract people in the building. And because ash is acidic, the longer it takes for the professionals to arrive on the scene the more permanent damage will be caused.

When the professionals first arrive on the scene, the first thing that they’ll do is to identify all affected materials and the source of any odors. The only way that they can clean the smoke and fire damage so that the building is restored to its original state is to be extremely thorough in their investigation. Ash residue can very easily be disturbed and spread throughout the building forcing everything it comes in contact with to need restoration. The professionals that arrive on the scene will be able to identify what can and what can’t be salvaged.

Over time, ash builds up into layers and it can eventually form into a lacquer-like consistency. So when the professionals arrive, they will remove the build-up of ash residue that’s coating the building.

The professional restorers will also locate the source of any odors caused by the fire and treat it with specialized detergents that are formulated specifically to neutralize these kinds of odors. Once the professionals are done treating the odors, they may seal the building off to prevent any further odor from spreading through the air.

After a fire it may be tempting to attempt to clean the building, especially if there doesn’t appear to be that much damage. However, that decision can have negative lasting effects. If you have fire damage and need cleanup and restoration, call SERVPRO to ensure a safe and quality restoration.

Insuring Your Home Against Fire Damage

2/8/2016 (Permalink)

A fire is probably the most devastating event that can occur in your home. A small fire can quickly become an inferno and spread until all of your belongings are destroyed. According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), 2013 saw 387,000 residential fires in the U.S. causing $7 billion worth of damage. 

The NFPA says that there are numerous causes of fires in the home ranging from kitchen appliances being left on to lightning strikes. Even if you do all you can to prevent a fire from occurring in your home, sometimes they are unpreventable. So it’s important that homeowners protect their property investments with the proper insurance.

Fire Insurance Coverage

Depending on what type of property insurance you have, you may already be covered for a fire. Providers offer different coverage options so it’s important that you review your details carefully and understand exactly what kind of protection you have.

According to the Insurance Information Institute, the average fire claim is in excess of $37,150. The two most common ways to insure your home against fires are standard home insurance and dwelling fire coverage.

Standard Home Insurance

If you are a homeowner, your mortgage likely required you to purchase a homeowners insurance policy. These standard home insurance policies typically cover fire damage. They might also protect your personal contents such as furniture, electronics, or other personal possessions.

Many policies will also include loss of use coverage. If your home becomes uninhabitable due to a claim that is covered by your policy, your loss of use coverage will kick in. Under this type of coverage, the insurance company may reimburse you for your extra living expenses while your home is in the process of being either repaired or rebuilt.

If you live in an apartment or if you rent your home, the landlord likely will have purchased coverage for the building. However, you’ll be responsible for protecting your own belongings. Standard renters policies are relatively cheap and can provide coverage for your personal property in the event of a fire.

Dwelling Fire Coverage

Dwelling fire coverage is generally less comprehensive than standard home insurance. Similar to standard home insurance it protects the building itself and other structures on the property. It also generally offers loss of use coverage if you have to relocate for a period of time. However, this type of insurance doesn’t cover your personal belongings or personal liability protection. Dwelling fire coverage is generally best used to protect a vacation home or a vacant home where you’ll have less of your personal belongings around.

How to File a Claim

Before filing your claim on a fire, you should take photos of the damage. Having the proper documentation available can make the process of filing the claim go much smoother.

After you have all the damage surveyed and documented, it’s time to contact the insurer and file the claim. The insurer will send a claims adjuster to your property to assess the damage and put together a cost estimate.

Once the claims adjuster has finished assessing the damage the repairs can begin on the property. Depending on the damage, repairs to your property could take anywhere from weeks to months to complete. Throughout the ordeal, it’s important to stay organized. Keep all emails, invoices, estimates, and any other documentation you may have received that relates to the damage.

Another way to make the process smoother is to have a full, up-to-date inventory detailing all of the items in your home. If you happen to lose everything in the fire, this inventory can help you to remember all of the items that you need replaced. In case your list happens to be destroyed in the fire as well, you should keep an electronic copy of the inventory that you can pull up if needed. If you prefer, there are some home inventory apps that you can download on your smartphone.

Prevent Fires Before They Start

No matter how prepared you are, a fire always has the potential to occur. But basic knowledge of fire safety can significantly reduce the chances that one will destroy your home. It’s important that you have basic fire safety knowledge and outfit your home with fire safety equipment.

Smoke alarms, sprinkler systems, and fire extinguishers can prevent a small fire from turning into flames that engulf your home. Having fire safety equipment can also help you to save money on your home insurance premium. Many home insurance providers will offer discounts if you have smoke alarms and sprinkler systems installed in your home.

It’s also important to make sure your entire family understand the basics of fire safety. Some basics to include are an evacuation plan, knowledge of potential fire causes, and a copy of the NFPA’s tips from the fire safety information section of their website.

Regardless of how prepared you are, a fire is always a possibility in your home. So it’s important to have insurance that will cover you should something happen. If you do suffer a fire, have the professionals at SERVPRO come and restore your home and possessions.

Restoring Your Home After a Fire

1/18/2016 (Permalink)

One of the most traumatic experiences a homeowner can face is a devastating fire. If out of control, a fire can destroy all of your possessions making it imperative to follow the proper procedure to rescue your personal belongings. 

The only way to ensure you don’t suffer permanent damage to your belongings is to start the restoration process the day of the fire. Within the first few minutes of the fire being extinguished soot residue will cause discoloration of plastics, appliances, and porous materials like alabaster and marble. Within the first few hours these discolorations can turn into deeper stains affecting bathroom grouts, counter tops, and appliance furnishings among other things. After the first few days those discolorations can become permanent.

The process of fire restoration is slightly complex and time consuming. To complete the process yourself it would take several weeks so it is highly recommended that you immediately contact the professionals at SERVPRO to do the job for you. These professionals have the specialized fire restoration training to complete the job in an efficient and timely manner. But you still might want to understand the process of fire restoration. So here are the steps that will be taken to restore your home to its pre-fire condition.

Before beginning the restoration, it’s very important to protect yourself. Wearing thick clothes and gloves will protect you from the hazardous materials in the house. Professionals will arrive wearing special clothing and equipment to protect them from harmful chemicals.

Once properly attired, a professional fire restoration company will inspect the entire home for every trace of fire damage. They will inspect and test adjoining rooms of your property, which will help to determine the extent of the damage of your home, caused by fire, smoke, and soot.

With the preparation complete, it is then time to begin the restoration process. The first step will be to ventilate the building. Opening all windows and doors will allow fresh air into the building. While a stiff wind may help the process, turning on some fans will expedite the ventilation process.

Often fires will compromise windows, walls, and roofs so it’s important to cover those areas to secure and protect them against further damage. SERVPRO professionals will board up missing windows and place tarps over missing roofs.

Occasionally there will be water damage following a fire. Like with fire restoration, water removal must begin almost immediately to minimize lasting damage. Professionals will remove the majority of the water and then use dehumidifiers and air movers to remove any remaining water.

The next step will be to clean the building by using specialized equipment and techniques to remove smoke and soot from the ceiling, walls, carpeting, upholstery, or any other areas that might have been affected. Professionals will treat the damaged areas with special equipment using ozone technology, powerful non-consumer technology that enables them to permanently remove odors.

The final step to completing the recovery of your home following a fire is restoration. This can include minor repairs like replacing drywall, painting, and installing new carpet. It can also include major repairs like reconstruction of various areas or rooms within the building. 

For homeowners, fine clothing that has been damaged by smoke will need to be dry-cleaned. Regular clothing with smoke damage can be cleaned using warm water in a washer and dryer but a mild alkaline detergent will need to be used. You also may need several launderings to rid the clothes of the smoke odor.

Sometimes there will be items that can’t be restored on site. These items will be packed up and shipped to a facility for professional deodorization and cleaning.

If immediate action is not taken to restore your home after a fire, the affects can be irreversible. Therefore it is of the utmost importance that you immediately call the folks at SERVPRO to help save your possessions and not attempt to accomplish the feat yourself. At the very least have these professional come to survey the damage and provide you with a quote.

If you come across a fire in the home, you can contact SERVPRO to serve your fire restoration needs.

Post-Fire Damage Tips and Services

1/8/2016 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Post-Fire Damage Tips and Services Damage from microwave fire.

As a national leader in disaster renovation, your South Brevard SERVPRO professionals are ready to restore and clean your property so it feels like home again. Not only are our highly trained professionals faster to any sized disaster, SERVPRO is the preferred vendor among insurance companies locally and nationwide. In the event of a fire, our specially trained fire restoration team has the experience and training to clean and restore your Melbourne or Palm Bay home to its pre-fire glory. 

A fire can be devastating to your home and once the fire trucks leave and the flames are gone, your home will most likely suffer from fire, smoke, and water damage. Following a fire, the primary focus is always safety. It’s important to ask yourself if it’s safe to go into your home. Oftentimes electrical and “slip and fall” hazards are primary safety concerns. 

Here’s what to do after a fire:

  • Limit movement in your home to prevent soot particles from being embedded into upholstery and carpets.
  • Keep your hands clean so you don’t add more damage to upholstery, walls and woodwork.
  • Place clean towels or old linens on rugs, upholstery and carpet traffic areas.
  • If the electricity is off, empty your freezer and refrigerator and prop the doors open.
  • Clean and protect chrome with light coating of petroleum jelly or oil.
  • Wash houseplants on both sides of leaves.
  • Change HVAC filter.
  • Tape double layers of cheesecloth over air registers.
  • To keep you, your home, and your family safe, here’s what NOT to do following a fire:

  • Don't attempt to wash any walls or painted surfaces or shampoo carpet or upholstery without contacting your Melbourne SERVPRO Professional.
  • Don't attempt to clean any electrical appliances that may have been close to fire, heat, or water without consulting an authorized repair service.
  • Don't use any canned or packaged food or beverages that may have been stored near the fire, heat, or water.
  • Don't turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet. The wiring may be damaged.
  • Don't send garments to an ordinary dry cleaner. Improper cleaning may set smoke odor.
  • As your source for fire damage repair and restoration, our team has the restore vs. replace mentality to save you time and money so that you can get back to normal as soon as possible. Our post-fire restoration services include: 

    Structural Cleaning

    Since smoke and fire can damage your ceilings, walls, carpeting, and floors, our team will have to do a thorough cleaning. Your Melbourne SERVPRO professional will assess the damages to your home to determine the extent of the damage and choose the best equipment and products for the different surfaces in your home. 

    Contents Cleaning

    Anything that can be restored in your home will be properly clean and deodorized to their prefire condition. Rugs, draperies, furniture, and upholstery will be carefully inspected and tested to determine the best cleaning methods. All other restorable contents, including electronics, art, kitchen items, and more will also be assessed for cleaning. 

    Deodorization

    Our professionals are also trained to remove the post-fire smoke odor from your home. Our team doesn’t simply cover up smoke odors, but rather finds the source of the odor and removes it. Your Melbourne SERVPRO professional will be able to explain the different deodorization methods for your home.

    Your South Brevard SERVPRO professionals are available 24 hours a day and 7 days a week so that you’re not alone when faced with a tragedy to your home. Our team understands how devastating a fire can be to you and your family, which is why our emergency restoration process begins just one hour following the notification of loss. Here’s how it works: 

    Hour One: Within one hour of notice, your SERVPRO professional will contact you to arrange for service.

    Hour Four: Within four hours, your SERVPRO team will be on-site to start mitigation services. The key to restoration is responding quickly to reduce damages and save you money.

    Explanation: Your extensively trained SERVPRO professional will walk your through the job process step-by-step so that you know what to expect throughout your restoration.

    Pretesting: Your team will begin pretesting for restoration, working from the source of the damage outward.

    Hour Eight: A verbal briefing of the scope will be communicated to you, your adjustor, or property manager.

    Cleaning, Restoration, and Deodorization: Your SERVPRO team will work quickly and delicately to help you regain control of your home. With our state-of-the-art restoration techniques, we’ll make sure your property is properly cared for from the start.

    Final Walk-Through: After all the work is completed, your SERVPRO professionals will walk you through your home to ensure your complete satisfaction. 

    In the event of a fire emergency to your home, our team is equipped to help restore your home as soon as possible. As your Melbourne disaster restoration professionals, we have the training and experience to help you through every step of your fire damage repair process. If you’ve experienced fire damage to your home or would like to learn more about our services, contact us today!

    Fire Damage in Palm Bay Requires Professional Assistance

    1/4/2016 (Permalink)

    Fire Damage Fire Damage in Palm Bay Requires Professional Assistance When a Fire Strikes Your Palm Bay Home, Call SERVPRO for Help

    SERVPRO Restores Your Fire Damaged Home in Palm Bay

    Fire damage in Palm Bay is one of the worst issues a residential property owner may have to experience. In addition to destroying an individual's valuable possessions, fires can do serious damage to the structural integrity of your property. However, learning more about what steps to take following a fire can help you limit stress, save money, and restore order in your life. To accomplish these objectives, SERVPRO offers the following short outline regarding fire damage recovery steps:

    Once a large fire strikes your property forcing you to vacate, you should not reenter. Unfortunately, fires can do significant damage to the foundation and structure of your property. This means that the house can harbor dangerous elements like sagging ceilings, hidden sharp objects, and electrical breakdowns. It's also important to note that your property probably has standing water following the fire due to the extinguishing activities of firefighters. These factors, a few among many, make your property a dangerous place to be. Be sure to consult with the department fire marshal or another official to learn when it is safe to reenter the home.

    Contact A Fire Damage Restoration Company like SERVPRO after you call your insurance company. When your property that has been impacted by fire, these professionals possess the expertise, equipment, and training necessary to restore your fire damaged property with skill and speed. There are numerous steps that fire damage restoration experts will complete restoring your property. Some of them include:
    • a thorough assessment of damages
    • creation of a customized treatment plan
    • cleaning, drying, and smoke and soot removal (including odors)
    • elimination of damaged items like rugs, drapes, and carpets
    • mold remediation, if lingering water has created this issue

     DIY Cleanup and Restoration Are Difficult.
    Although many homeowners are tempted to complete the fire damage remediation process for themselves, you should avoid this course of action. Homeowners do not possess the specialized equipment necessary to complete the fire remediation work quickly and correctly. Additionally, property owners are unaware of the health and safety hazards involved in the remediation process. This means that attempting to complete the restoration process on your own could make you susceptible to injury and illness.

    Let The Professionals Of SERVPRO Assist You. Once you realize that you're in need of fire damage remediation services, there's only one company to call: SERVPRO. Our excellent technicians are IICRC-certified and work with skill and persistence to ensure that every corner of your Palm Bay home is restored to its former condition. Our industry experience has given us a profound awareness of how to expedite and optimize every component of the restoration process, and this is why we achieve such high levels of client satisfaction. "Like it never even happened."

    Have Fire and Smoke Damage? Call Today (321) 777-5131

    24-Hour Emergency Fire Restoration Service

    SERVPRO of South Brevard knows that fire damage can happen any time, so we’re ready to respond 24 hours, 7 days a week—including holidays. We provide immediate emergency fire services for Palm Bay, Melbourne, and Indialantic homes or businesses, day or night. Call us for help.

    What to do if your House in Melbourne Beach is Damaged by Fire

    8/19/2015 (Permalink)

    Fire Damage What to do if your House in Melbourne Beach is Damaged by Fire Kitchen Fires Are a Common Source

    Fire Damage in Your Melbourne Beach Home

    Experiencing a fire-damaged home in Melbourne Beach can be quite traumatic. Once you come to terms with the loss of valuable possessions, you also need to think about cleaning up and restoring your house. Once you know everyone is out of harms way, and the fire has been extinguished, you can begin thinking about the steps needed to get your life and your home back to normal.

    Do Not Enter a Home Damaged by Fire

    Although you may be tempted to go back into the house to access the damage, you need to wait until a professional gives the ok. The structure could be damaged, and there could be dangerous chemicals in the air that can cause respiratory problems. The electrical systems in the home can also be affected and could cause electrocution. A professional needs to check out the home and make sure it is safe.

    Contact an Insurance Agent

    Your homeowner’s insurance agent will assess the damage and determine what type of coverage should be included in your claim. An adjuster will come out to the home and provide an estimate of the damage and can recommend a fire restoration company. SERVPRO can come in to clean and repair damage and restore your home as quickly as possible.

    Call a Fire Restoration Company

    It makes sense that your house is cleaned, dried, and restored correctly by professionals from a fire damage restoration company. These technicians are trained to identify problem areas and determine what can be saved, what can be cleaned, and what should be disposed.  An experienced company will inspect your home and determine if mold is an issue, and if so, begin working to remove it from the home. SERVPRO will use high-velocity fans to move air and dry out the areas and will remove the debris to prevent further damage. 

    Although dealing with a fire can be emotionally draining, working with a fire damage restoration company can make the process easier. Getting your home promptly back to normal will allow everyone in the family to move on with their lives.

    Locally Owned, with National Resources

    SERVPRO of South Brevard is locally owned and operated so we are part of the Melbourne Beach community too. When you have a fire, flooding or water emergency, we’re already nearby and ready to help.

    As fire and water damage specialists, we have the experience, the expertise, and the advanced training that enables us to get your property restored quickly and thoroughly.  Please call (321) 777-5131

    Have A South Brevard Professional Handle The Process Of Fire Restoration

    3/7/2015 (Permalink)

    Fire Damage Have A South Brevard Professional Handle The Process Of Fire Restoration Professional damage restoration companies work with a wide range of different home or business issues pertaining to natural and man-made disasters.

    Have A South Brevard Professional Handle The Process Of Fire Restoration 

    Handling the aftermath of a fire in South Brevard can be one of the most frustrating things a homeowner or business owner will ever have to deal with on their own. Fires, even ones that are quite minimal and were put out quickly, can cause a lot of damage. Not only is black soot on walls, ceilings and furniture an issue, but the water damage that was caused to put out the flames is also an issue. For many, stagnant air and musky odors can linger for quite some time after a fire has been extinguished. Also, carbon monoxide levels might not be safe for those who are re-entering the home or building.

    This is why it is important to have a professional handle the process of fire restoration. Professional damage restoration companies work with a wide range of different home or business issues pertaining to natural and man-made disasters. The reason these types of companies are so beneficial is because they have worked on thousands of homes or buildings very much like your own. They also have the skills, equipment and tools necessary to get the job done effectively and efficiently. These are things that you might not be able to do on your own.

    Another reason to have a professional handle the process of fire restoration and leftover water damage from extinguishing the fire is because it can sometimes be dangerous to do the cleaning on your own. The smoke from a South Brevard fire can put carbon monoxide in the air, which is an odorless and tasteless fume that can be fatal to breathe in regularly. The expert company will check for carbon monoxide levels and take the appropriate actions if it is found to be within the home or building that has recently dealt with a fire and leftover damage from flames.

    Your home or office building can easily get restored back to its former glory once a professional does the job for you. Trying to remedy fire damage on your own can be frustrating and even dangerous if you aren't checking for carbon monoxide levels and the like. Instead, think about contacting a local company to come in and do the job for you when it is convenient for you. The fire damage will be remedied and your home or place of business will be completely restored so that you can feel comfortable going back in and being there regularly.

    Fire Damage Restoration

    We understand that smoke and fire damage is both devastating and disruptive to your family or business. SERVPRO of South Brevard Professionals respond quickly to repair fire, smoke, and soot damage, including:

    • Fire damage cleanup
    • Smoke and soot damage cleaning and repair
    • Cleaning your home's contents and belongings
    • Eliminating fire and smoke odor and deodorization