Recent Fire Damage Posts
Easy Steps to Prevent Fire in Your Home | SERVPRO® of Billings
If your home is damaged in a house fire, SERVPRO of Billings is here to help. Contact us for any fire restoration needs.
The American Red Cross has responded to more than 20,000 house fires in 2022, and that is only a small amount of the total number of fires the United States has seen so far.
Smoke detectors will always be the top way to protect your home and your life, but there are other preventive measures you can take, even as simple as cleaning your home.Clear the Clutter
Excessive clutter in our home can be an issue of its own, but allowing stairwells, hallways and utility spaces to hold unused materials can be a fire hazard. Cloth items such as loose clothing, extra blankets and pillows can act as fuel to a fire.
Clothing left near a water heater can actually start a fire when the water heater turns on. With our cold climate, it is likely you have a space heater in your home, and allowing items to pile up near it can create another fire hazard.
Space heaters should never be near drapes or furniture, and should always be in an open area of your home. Clean your space heater before you store it for the warmer months, and be sure to check it for dust before the next use as well.
Make sure your space heaters or any other warming device you use is plugged into a unit that is not overloaded. Overloaded extension cords are another source of fire in your home. Put away electrical appliances you don’t use, and unplug anything you don’t use often.
Always leave room between furniture and wall outlets to avoid overheating and allow for proper air flow.Create a Defensible Space in Your Yard
The landscaping in your yard can play a key role in protecting your home from fire that starts outside. Laying out your landscape in intentional ways both slows a fire and allows space for firefighters to work in the event of an emergency.
Intentional landscaping for fire safety is known as creating defensible zones. States like California have actually imposed specific requirements for zoning in yards, but this type of prevention is useful everywhere.
This doesn’t mean you can’t plant what you want; instead, it requires strategic placement of plants and trees to protect your home. You also need to keep your yard clear of dead leaves and limbs, as this can fuel a fire. With as common as maple trees are in Montana, that can mean a lot of raking!Keep It Clean & Keep It Safe
Clearing out your home and yard isn’t the only cleaning that can prevent fires. Your chimney and stove are two other areas with a high risk of fire, and regularly cleaning them can make a big difference.
Lowering the fire risk doesn’t just mean deep-cleaning either. Dusting your home is actually an act of fire prevention, particularly dusting around electrical appliances and outlets. So attack those dust bunnies with the pleasure of knowing you are protecting your home and loved ones!
Our homes are more than a sanctuary these days—they also serve us for work, play and even schooling. Keeping your house clean is the best way to prevent the devastation a fire would cause.
If you have experienced fire damage or want to learn more about our fire damage restoration services, contact us today. We’re here to act fast, 24⁄7
Read This if Your Dryer Lint Screen Is Dirty
Clean that lint screen fully.
How To Prevent a Lint Fire
Your dryer's lint screen is chronically dirty. There are traces of lint stuck to the sides. In fact, there are areas of your dryer that you didn't even know needed to be cleaned. Read on to find out how to easily prevent a lint fire.
1. Clean That Lint Screen Fully
Most people either ignore the lint screen until it's overflowing, or they cleanse it sporadically. Neither of these methods is effective. Proper lint screen cleaning includes:
- Accessing the lint screen
- Rubbing your hand or a brush over it
- Using the balled lint to gather any remaining particles
- Dispensing properly
Place the gathered lint far away from any source of heat. Make sure you follow the above steps each time before a new drying cycle. If the screen is looking especially linty, rinse it with water and some soap. Fuzz will also gather in the lint trap, so vacuum it to prevent clogs.
2. Deep Clean the Entire Dryer and Exhaust Hose
This isn't a fun task, but it only has to be done about twice a year. Unseen materials can also start a lint fire. Every 6 months, make sure to give your drying machine a deep clean. Always remember to unplug the appliance before doing so.
Pull the machine away from the wall, and remove the back panel. This will expose the exhaust hose and interior, giving you access to any clogs or debris to wipe away. Reposition all parts before restarting the dryer.
3. Call Forth the Pros
There are around 2,900 dryer fire emergencies reported each year. Not keeping on top of your dryer's cleanliness can be dangerous and costly. That's why it's best to call your local experts in Laurel, MT, and get that dryer fully inspected. The professional cleaning and remediation team can determine the exact regimen for your particular make and model. The right tools will also be brought in.
If you don't have the time or ability to clean your dryer properly, it's best to call in experts. They will know the best route to prevent a lint fire. If fire damage does occur, make sure you picked the right team that can handle the aftermath, as well.
How Does Water Lead to Damages After a Fire?
As the firefighters work to put out flames, they may spray a lot of water.
Water Damage and Fire Damage
Fire damage may seem like one of your top concerns after the flames have been put out, but you'll also need to address a fair amount of water damage. When a fire first strikes, most business owners are primarily concerned about the well-being of their staff, customers, and property. Once the smoke clears, however, a period of uncertainty and panic may settle in. Fortunately, fire remediation experts can help you navigate the cleanup and restoration process. There are several sources of water that may affect your property.
- Sprinkler systems
- Fire hoses
- Burst pipes
- Sewer backups
If you have a sprinkler system installed in your building, the heat, flames, or smoke may trigger the emergency system and send 15 to 25 gallons of water per minute into your business. That water can cause a lot of damage.
As the firefighters work to put out flames, they may spray a lot of water at high levels of pressure through a fire hose. That water often floods the building, running down stairways, flooding rooms, and affecting walls and ceilings. Equipment and furnishings are often harmed more by the water than by fire damage.
Another common culprit of water damage after a fire is the burst pipe. As temperature levels rise as a result of the fire, the building's piping system experiences a lot of pressure. The heated pipes may warp, break, and burst. Sometimes pipes are damaged by falling debris. These bursting pipes force a lot of water into the building, causing flood damages.
If the sewer system line is damaged by the fire or falling debris, you could have an even messier problem on your hands. Sewer backflows often happen for other reasons, but these disasters are an increased risk during fires.
Fire damage isn't your only concern after a fire. You may also face a lot of water damage. Work closely with Acton, MT, fire remediation professionals to get trouble under control and your business back to normal after a fire.
Concerns About Smoke Damage to Electronics
You need a fire cleanup expert to assess the smoke damage to your electronics.
Smoke Damage To Electronics
No one living in Acton, MT, wants to think about their home catching on fire. In the worst-case scenario, fires can completely destroy your home and everything inside. Even small, minor fires can result in significant fire cleanup and damage to precious items. One thing homeowners have to worry about is smoke damage to electronics. It’s important to be aware of this potential and know-how to handle the problem if it occurs in your home.
1. Smoke residue can harm your equipment. You spend a lot of money on your electronics, and you use them frequently throughout each day. If there’s a fire in your home, even the smoke can render your electronics useless if you’re not careful. Inside smoke are acids that are known to corrode metal surfaces. It’s vital to have a specialist carefully remove the residue as quickly as possible. If the residue stays on the surfaces too long, it will ruin your devices.
2. A specialist can look at your electronics and determine the amount of damage. Part of your fire cleanup efforts should include a restoration specialist examining your electronics. Only a qualified expert should attempt to remove the residue. The quicker someone can address this situation, the better chance you have to save your devices and avoid replacing them or losing precious data.
3. No electronics are immune to the damage. Smoke knows no bounds when it comes to ruining your equipment. A restoration specialist will carefully examine all of your electronics in your home, including televisions, desktops, laptops, stereos, DVD players and anything else that may have been exposed to the smoke.
Fires of any size or seriousness can cause major problems to your home and to your valuables inside. You need a fire cleanup expert to assess the smoke damage to your electronics. When you get a specially trained professional on the case, you have a greater chance of salvaging your electronics in Acton, MT.
3 Types of Damage Your Home Can Suffer During a Fire
House fire in Broadview, MT.
Types of Fire Damage
When you think of fire damage, you may think of flames charring a home’s walls or roof. However, you may be surprised to know that your Broadview, MT, home could suffer from a variety of issues during and after a blaze, all of which could have long-lasting negative effects. Even smaller fires may cause these issues, but being aware of what type of damage you might encounter can help you take more effective steps toward restoration afterward.
1. Smoke Damage
When a fire sweeps through one or more rooms of your home, smoke can leave behind strong odors and stain your walls and ceilings. The smoky smell may also permeate porous items, such as drywall and carpeting, causing the stench to linger for months. Smoke can also discolor painted walls, causing colors to fade and white shades to turn yellow.
2. Soot Stains
During a fire, items in a room may only be charred instead of burning completely. When this occurs, the carbon created by the incomplete burning creates a fine black powder, or soot, that settles on furniture, floors and other surfaces. This type of damage can be difficult to remove from carpeting and may stain fabrics and other items when they are not cleaned correctly. Calling in a fire damage and restoration company to professionally remove soot from your home can give you peace of mind that the cleanup process is performed correctly.
You may not associate water damage with a house fire. However, a fire hose releases tremendous amounts of the liquid in a high-pressure spray that can leave your home and belongings soaked. If the water sits for more than 24 hours, the humid conditions caused by the fire’s heat can create ideal conditions for mold growth, so it is wise to have any flood waters removed as soon as possible.
There are several different types of fire damage that can affect your Broadview, MT, home after a blaze. However, knowing how to resolve them may make the restoration process less stressful.
3 Ways to Avoid Cigarette Fires
If you do not put out the burning end of a cigarette, you will greatly increase a fire risk inside or outside of your home.
Avoid Cigarette Fires
Cigarettes are a common cause of fire even though these fires are easily preventable. Here are three ways to prevent a cigarette fire.
1. Smoke outside. Most cigarette fires start when a smoker falls asleep. Bedrooms and couches are the most common places for cigarette fires to break out. Keep in mind that the same risks apply to smoking on a screened-in porch or a deck with furniture. It is best to smoke away from the house in an outdoor chair. You may be less likely to get comfortable enough to fall asleep outside with a lit cigarette.
2. Use stable, enclosed ashtrays. An ashtray fire is a common type of cigarette fire. This type of blaze can occur if a pet knocks over an ashtray that contains smoldering butts or if burning butts get blown out of the ashtray onto combustible materials outdoors. Choose an ashtray that is hard to knock over, and that is enclosed or features a material that makes it easy to ensure that smoldering butts no longer pose a fire risk.
3. Completely extinguish cigarettes. If you do not put out the burning end of a cigarette, you will greatly increase a fire risk inside or outside of your home. Take an extra moment to make sure that your cigarette is completely extinguished before leaving the area. Some ashtrays feature sand or other materials that can help to ensure that the ends of cigarettes are no longer burning. This is the most important step in preventing fires whether you choose to smoke indoors or outdoors.
These are three simple and effective ways to prevent fires caused by cigarettes in or around your home. If a cigarette fire does break out, you can either extinguish a minor fire yourself or call the fire department. If your home sustains damage, contact a fire cleanup service near Laurel,MT.
3 Things You Should Include in Your Fire Escape Plan
Draw a plan of your home.
3 Things You Should Include in Your Fire Escape Plan
Home fires can be catastrophic and scary, but you can improve your family’s chance of getting out safely if you come up with a fire escape plan in advance. The idea of putting together a detailed, complicated plan can seem overwhelming, so try starting with these three simple steps:
1. Identify All Exits
Print out or draw a floor plan of your home in Billings, MT. Then mark all exits in a bright color (including all exterior doors and windows). Consider putting a fire escape ladder next to all upper-story windows, and make sure all basement window wells have fire ladders as well.
2. Perform a Drill
When the entire family is present, create an emergency escape plan. Identify areas of the home where fires are likely to occur, then make sure each family member knows the safest ways to exit the home from various rooms (bedrooms, family rooms, bathrooms, etc.)
Next, perform a fire drill and have everyone follow the fire escape plan as discussed. It’s a good idea to perform several drills and change up the location of the fire with each drill. For example, during one drill, the fire could be in the basement. In the next drill, the fire could be in the laundry room. Different escape routes may need to be chosen based on the location of the fire.
3. Establish an After-Fire Action Plan
It’s easy to become separated from loved ones during a fire, so make sure you establish a meeting place outside the home in advance. Your meeting place could be on the street corner or at a neighbor’s house in the event of inclement weather.
As part of your fire escape plan, make sure every member of the family knows the number of the fire department. You may also want to memorize the number of your local fire restoration company and the insurance company so you can call them right away. Be sure to notify your family and close friends that you are safe as well so they won’t needlessly worry.
How to Prevent Kitchen Fires
Kitchen fire damage to a home.
Keep Your Home Safe From Kitchen Fires
If you would like to keep your home safe from kitchen fires, you can do several things to reach your goal. Kitchen fires can turn your house into a smoke-damaged home in no time, and removing the lingering smoke odor won't be easy.
You can protect yourself by:
- Monitoring your food
- Setting a timer
- Placing a smoke detector above your stove.
Keeping your children away from the stove while you are cooking is another great way to prevent fire damage.
What to Do When a Fire Takes Place
Despite your best effort, kitchen fires can still occur and inflict fire damage to your home, but you are not out of luck. A fire restoration team can come to your location and repair your smoke-damaged home, providing you with impressive results. They will get to work cleaning soot from walls as soon as possible, which will combat the lingering smoke odor.
After they are done cleaning soot from walls, they will also use filters to clean the air in your home. Your personal belongings will be shipped to an off-site location so that the team can repair and send them back to you. No matter how hopeless your situation might seem from the surface, hiring a fire restoration team is one of the best ways to get your life back on track.
3 Steps for Fixing a Beeping Smoke Detector
Protect your home and family from a fire with a smoke detector.
3 Steps for Fixing a Beeping Smoke Detector
Protecting your Acton, MT, home and family from a fire with smoke detectors is a simple and cost-effective safety measure. You can install these devices on every floor, the presence of a fire alarm in each location might give you peace of mind each time you leave your home or go to sleep at night. However, if you notice one or more of your alarms chirping or beeping, it may need maintenance and there are a few steps you can take to resolve the problem.
1. Check the Battery
Your smoke alarm cannot protect your home from fire damage if the battery is not allowing it to function correctly. If the unit is beeping every few minutes, open the battery compartment and check the battery's connection. If it does not appear loose, then you may need to change the battery. A good rule of thumb is to change and check the alarm every fall and spring during the time change.
2. Inspect Your Thermostat
Environmental changes may cause your fire alarm to beep unexpectedly. If this happens and you know the battery is not the problem, then check your thermostat to ensure the room is not too humid. If this is a problem, use a ceiling or floor fan to lower the condensation levels. Opening windows during humid weather can also help.
3. Check for Internal Damage
If your unit was installed during a previous fire in your home, it may have smoke damage to its internal parts. A fire damage and restoration service can help you decide whether you need new smoke detectors installed and assist you with other fire prevention measures as well, such as checking your home for potential fire hazards and formulating an evacuation plan.
Having a working fire alarm in your Acton, MT, home can help you feel confident that your family is well protected. Scheduling regular maintenance for each unit in your home at least twice a year may prevent malfunction and the kind of serious damage that house fires cause.
How To Prevent a Kitchen Fire
The aftermath of a kitchen fire in Comanche, MT
How To Prevent a Kitchen Fire
The kitchen is a common location for fires. An oil spill or burnt meal can send smoke and flames throughout your Comanche, MT, home. To avoid a harmful blaze that could necessitate fire damage cleanup services, follow the below tips.
Obviously, many kitchen fires occur when someone in the house is cooking. You should thus take extra care when preparing meals for your family.
The following items could start fires if they are left near a burner. Keep these combustibles away from the stove, especially when you are using that appliance:
- Paper towels
Once you are ready to start cooking, be sure to protect yourself. Tie back long hair and roll up your sleeves as well. This keeps your body and clothes safe from both fires and sauce stains.
After you turn on the oven or stove, stay in the kitchen. Turn off any burners if you have to leave the room. These are particularly important tips for those working with hot oil.
Overfilled pans or pots can splatter and cause a grease fire. Only use the amount of liquid necessary to cook your meal.
Finally, make sure everyone in your family knows not to put metal into the microwave. A hot metal platter could spark a blaze.
Electrical fires can happen in the kitchen as well. Many appliances, including coffeemakers, toaster ovens and mixers, continue to use electricity even when they are powered off. If any of these items have faulty wiring, they could spark a blaze. You should thus unplug any of those electric appliances when you are not using them.
Dirty appliances could also be dangerous. Make sure to clean your oven, toaster and microwave regularly. Have any malfunctioning items serviced right away.
These tips are pretty straightforward. To keep your home safe from most kitchen fires, just be cautious when you cook and take proper care of your appliances.
Property and Income Insurance for Business Owners
Many business owners choose to purchase a commercial property policy
If your Broadview, MT, business is damaged by fire, the damage and disruption can be devastating. Fortunately, business interruption coverage and other types of insurance can help keep your company afloat.
Commercial Property Insurance
Many business owners choose to purchase a commercial property policy. Such a policy generally covers fire damage as well as other perils, like storm damage. In general, these policies cover both the building and its contents, including the following:
- Raw materials
- Goods (finished or not)
The exact coverage varies depending on a variety of factors, including whether you rent or own the building. Always consult with your insurance agent to make sure you have adequate coverage. Pay close attention to whether your policy covers the replacement cost or actual cash value. Due to depreciation, property generally costs more to replace than its cash value at the time of the loss.
In addition to property damage, a business fire can also cost you money in terms of lost productivity during the fire cleaning and restoration process. For this situation, business interruption insurance can keep your business financially sound. This type of coverage is also known as income insurance. Such a policy covers lost income as well as a variety of expenses, including the following:
- Temporary relocation expenses
- Other fixed expenses, such as loan payments
For the income insurance payout(s) to most accurately meet your needs, it is important to keep good records and accurately estimate your expected income when purchasing the policy.
A fire can damage your property and disrupt your business, leaving you financially vulnerable. In addition to property insurance, a good income insurance policy can help you through a period of business interruption. While insurance can help you financially, a certified restoration company can help you with the physical repairs. They have the experience and equipment necessary to do the job safely and correctly.
How Renters Insurance Can Help After a Fire
Renters insurance can be a big financial help after a fire at your home
A fire at your Comanche, MT, rental home can be a major hassle. Fortunately, renters insurance can protect you.
There are a variety of expenses that can result from a fire. Your insurance policy may cover most or all of them. Insurance policies often cover the following:
- Liability and medical payments
- Temporary living expenses
If the fire is your fault, you may be held liable for the damage. In some cases, especially for small medical expenses to third parties, insurance will cover the cost without establishing liability. Additionally, insurance policies generally cover fire damage to the renter’s personal property, also known as contents. Some policies will pay what the contents were worth just before the fire, and other policies will cover the cost to replace or repair the items. Although damage to the structure itself is covered by the landlord’s policy, a renter's policy will often pay for temporary living expenses during the fire restoration process. Make sure you read your policy carefully and discuss the terms with your insurance agent so that you know the coverage limits and what is and is not covered.
To get the most out of your renter's insurance, it is important to create a document called a home inventory. This is a list of everything you would want to replace should it be damaged, the purchase price and purchase date. Take pictures or video of all the items, including serial numbers if present. Add receipts and appraisal documentation if you have them. Be sure to update the inventory regularly, especially after you have made a big purchase. Store the inventory in a safe place, such as cloud storage or an off-site location.
Renters insurance can be a big financial help after a fire at your home. If you need assistance with the restoration of your personal belongings, enlisting an experienced restoration team may be a good idea.
3 Reasons To Have Interruption Insurance
Reasons to have business interruption insurance
3 Reasons To Have Interruption Insurance
When business owners plan ahead for emergencies or disasters, they should think of what to do both during and after a calamitous event. A fire may stop a business from operating for days or weeks, during which time the owner can lose revenue while continuing to foot bills for expenses at a commercial property in Broadview, MT. Business interruption coverage is independent of property insurance, but both policies are essential during restoration.
1. Disasters Reduce Revenue
When a disaster such as a business fire takes place, owners often focus on expenses associated with cleaning and restoring damage. In reality, these are the starting points of a costly period of time. A disaster may lead to total loss of revenue if an enterprise cannot operate out of a temporary location until the primary property is restored.
2. Some Expenses Continue
After a disaster causes business income to slow or stop, expenses such as rent, equipment leases, payroll, and utilities are likely to continue. A business that has to pay bills and foot any out-of-pocket costs for damage or services that exceed cleanup and restoration work covered by a property insurance policy might not survive a disaster without business interruption insurance.
3. Coverage Offsets Losses
Most interruption policies kick in 48 to 72 hours after a disaster necessitates business closure. A restoration company can dispatch representatives to assess, document, and mitigate damage within hours. An estimate should be available to insurance companies in a timely manner so that fire cleaning and restoration can get underway as soon as possible.
Cleaning professionals will work quickly to restore a commercial property in Broadview, MT. If a business can temporarily relocate and continue to operate during this time, it may not be necessary to make a business interruption claim. A general property or interruption policy may also offset relocation costs to and from a temporary location.
How To Care for Your Pets In a Fire Emergency
Tip- Place a Window Cling to alert firefighters about pets within your home in case of a fire
How To Care for Your Pets In a Fire Emergency
Are you prepared to efficiently escape a burning home? Do you know the best methods for departure, keeping both family members and pets secure? During a fire emergency, decisions must be made quickly. There is no time for doubt or error. Therefore, you'll want to know now how to make the best use of time and resources. After all, a fire restoration company in Billings, MT, can repair a building, but it cannot bring back something or someone you love. For that reason, it's imperative to understand the risks of these events and prepare as best as possible. Establish a plan that considers the whole household--pets included. Here are three tips to make the departure a bit easier.
1. Make Them Part of Your Plan
If a fire sparks, you want everyone to understand the proper escape procedures. This includes knowing how to handle your favorite animals. Therefore, pet preparation should be included in any family discussions and practices. Make sure that you know who would be responsible for locating your beloved furry friend. Create a specific call that for quick response, and, during routine drills, use this as a signal that your dog or cat should come quickly. In addition, kids should be told to exit and not reenter, securing their safety and allowing the professionals to help if needed.
2. Place Information Near the Front Door
During a fire emergency, firefighters should be aware of any dogs or cats within the home. Consider a window cling that states each animal's name, age, and common location. With this information, first responders are more aware of who to look for and where. In addition, keep leaches within eyesight and collars on animals.
3. Make Alone Time Safe Time
Store cages or beds in locations that can be easily accessed, making for quick and efficient rescues. Also, prevention is an essential part of pet safety. Try to ensure that animals cannot start a blaze, sheltering them away from stoves, candles, and electrical sources.
During a fire emergency understand how to aid your animals. Organize their location and belongings.
3 Candle Alternatives For Families and Pet Owners
Flameless candles are the closest you can get to using a “candle” safely
Nothing says “happy holidays” like a warm, scented candle; however, wax lights feature an open flame that makes them a fire hazard. In fact, firefighters respond to one candle fire incident in Acton, MT every day, and the numbers increase tremendously in December. That’s why you need to consider switching to a safer option.
Here are some candle alternatives that won’t feel like a downgrade:
- Electric candles
- Candle warmers
- Diffuser sticks
1. Candle Warmers
Flameless candles are the closest you can get to using a “candle” safely. As the name suggests, these devices produce light that is similar to a real candle, complete with a flickering yellow “flame.” Scented versions are available, and they cost anywhere between $5 - $20. Think of them as your best option, especially if you have young kids or pets running around in the house.
2. Candle Warmers
Wax warmers make it possible to enjoy candle scent, minus the risk of operating an open flame. You can control the fragrance by limiting the melting intervals using the handy in-built timer. They also come in various exciting designs and a wide range of scents.
3. Diffuser Sticks
Diffuser sticks are one of the candle alternatives for people looking to introduce a constant fragrance in their home. The best thing about this setup is it runs on autopilot. A reed diffuser, for example, lasts about 90 days, and you only need to set it up once. You can place it behind the décor if it does not suit your style.
As a homeowner in Acton, MT, it is better to settle for any candle alternatives of your choice, especially if you have children and pets in the house. You can combine electric candles with a wax warmer to get the full candle effect safely and cheaply. However, if you still insist on playing with real candles, place them in the middle of the table and blow them out after dinner.
The Importance of Having Fire Extinguishers in the Home
Being prepared with a fire extinguisher can help you protect your home from devastating damage
It's important to be prepared in case of emergencies. One of the ways you should be prepared is by having a fire extinguisher in your home. These can help you put out small fires before they get out of hand. There are several different types of fire extinguishers available, and knowing the difference can help you determine which one you need.
Types of Extinguishers
There are four different types of fire extinguishers.
Class A: Puts out regular fires that were started with wood, paper, etc.
Class B: Extinguishes grease fires
Class C: For electrical fires
Class D: For extinguishing flammable metals
For most homes, a Class A or Class B fire extinguisher should be used to put out a small home fire, depending on the cause.
Where to Put Them
There are several locations to place your fire extinguisher to ensure they are ready for an emergency. The kitchen is where the majority of fires start, so have one under the sink or somewhere you can easily access it. You should also have one wherever there is a heat source, such as near your heater or fireplace. Consider having one on each level of your home, particularly in your garage and a level with bedrooms.
How to Use
Familiarizing yourself with how to use a fire extinguisher is an important step in fire preparedness. In most cases, the extinguisher will have a pin you will pull out. When aiming, you should aim for the base of the flames, not the top. Squeeze the trigger and sweep it along the base. If you have a hard time getting the fire out on your own, then get yourself to safety as quickly as possible.
Being prepared with a fire extinguisher can help you protect your home from devastating damage in Broadview, MT. Even small fires can cause damage. Whether you experience a small fire or something more substantial, you can count on your fire damage experts to get the mess cleaned up.
3 Gas Range Cleaning Tips for Homeowners
With a clean gas range stove, you'll have a pleasant experience every time you cook
Tips To Cleaning Your Gas Stove
A gas range stove can make cooking meals in your home in Comanche, MT, quicker and more enjoyable, but cleaning the stovetop is something many homeowners avoid. Here are several tips to make cleaning your gas stove less of a chore.
1. Vinegar and Water Can Help Clean Your Stovetop
Stovetop range cleaning doesn't necessarily have to be difficult or costly. In fact, many homeowners swear by mixing an equal amount of water and vinegar and using this mixture to clean their stovetops and remove minor stains. For the best results, many people recommend spraying this mixture onto the stovetop and allowing it to sit for several minutes before removing the mixture with a paper towel or a washcloth.
2. Don't Forget the Grates
Stovetops aren't the only areas on your gas range that you should clean. Grease can quickly build up on the burner grates, which can result in a smoke smell and also increases the risk of a grease fire. Homeowners whose homes have sustained fire damage may find it useful to contact emergency restoration services. However, you can often avoid a grease fire by cleaning your burner grates when your oven is turned off. Using warm soapy water and a small brush, such as a toothbrush, is an effective way to thoroughly clean your grates.
3. Perform Regular Maintenance
In addition to frequently cleaning all parts of your stove, there are also various ways to maintain your stove. It's often wise to replace any components, such as burner grates or knobs, as needed. If you do notice that your range isn't lighting up as usual or if you are having other issues with your stove, it can be helpful to contact a professional who can diagnose the problem and make repairs. Ultimately, performing regular maintenance on your gas stove can help your stove to function well for years to come.
Range cleaning doesn't have to be a hassle, and it can be helpful to use homemade mixtures when cleaning, to clean your grates and to perform regular maintenance often. With a clean gas range stove, you'll have a pleasant experience every time you cook.
The Top 3 Tips to Keep a Microwave Clean
Give the microwave a good cleaning
Cleaning Tips on Microwave
In the late 60s, the microwave oven made its inaugural debut. Since then, it has become just another appliance sold in Broadview, MT. Everyday use is bound to give off a smoke smell every now and then, and for those of you who have an addiction to popcorn, the burning and the smell that comes with it is an inevitability. The question you may have now is what’s the best way to get rid of the odor. The following cleaning tips will help to minimize unwanted aromas.
1. Clean the Grill
Greasy buildup can start to stink after awhile. To clean the vent grill, use soap, water and a soft cloth or sponge. Do not use abrasive cleaners, scouring pads or steel wool. For some, using a dishwasher may be an easier route to take. Read the manufacturer’s instructions for information. At some point, the vent grill will need to be replaced.
2. Give the Microwave a Good Cleaning
Not regularly cleaning the microwave can introduce a smoke smell you’d rather not inhale. If you haven’t wiped it out in some time, get out the dishcloth and start scrubbing. The easiest way to accomplish this is to put a bowl of vinegar in the oven and heat it. The steam will loosen the crusted over food particles making cleanup simple.
3. Wipe It Out
Once the hard part of scouring is over, don’t let the food leftovers build up again. Clean the oven out after every use. All it takes is a dishcloth and soap. Don’t forget to take out the turntable and wipe out the area underneath.
Ensure the microwave oven is cleaned daily so no lingering smoke smell is noticeable. The little bit of elbow grease needed to keep an oven spotless might mean not having to replace parts so soon. A smoke assessment professional can speak with you concerning the best way to keep your microwave in top condition.
How to Deal With Roof Damage
Roofs are often most prone to repair needs after a fire.
A fire in your workplace is probably one of your biggest nightmares. You do everything possible to avoid this disaster, but it's important to be prepared in case this terrible event occurs. A large fire can cause catastrophic damage, and even smaller blazes can require extensive fire cleanup. Roofs are often most prone to repair needs. If your roof suffers damage in a fire, there are some important steps you should take to mitigate the issue and prevent further problems.
Mitigating Roof Damage after a Fire
Consequences of Roof Damage
A sturdy, well-built roof is essential for any building. At your Billings, MT, office, you rely on the roof to provide security and safety. It will also keep out the elements and provide a more comfortable environment. If your workplace faces roof repair the following effects may be present:
- Could let in rain or snow, which in turn could cause water damage or flooding
- Could leave gaping holes in your building, making the facility vulnerable to intruders or looting
- Damage could increase and lead to further structural problems
Call the Pros
There is too much at stake for you to try to address fire cleanup on your roof by yourself. It can also be unsafe for an untrained novice to attempt inspection and repairs. Your best bet is to get in touch with a fire restoration company, especially one that specializes in roof repair. Professionals have the experience, skill and techniques to safely assess the extent of the damage and to quickly and thoroughly repair the roof.
Board, Tarp and Restore
The specialists will either board up the roof where there are gaps, or they will call in tarp services to cover up the holes. This will protect the rest of your building and help prevent more problems. The team will then begin the repair portion of the process.
Trust fire cleanup to the professionals. The right team knows how to correct even the most severe problems with your building's roof.
3 Steps To Clean Your Microwave
Clean your microwave
Three Steps to Clean Your Oven
How did humanity ever survive before the invention of the microwave oven? Nobody remembers. The only certainty is that it forever changed the face of the popcorn industry. Microwave ovens are cooking everywhere. The smells range from exquisite to disgusting. They prove that smoke smell is not the worst odor that can waft through your airtight home. Following are three steps to clean your oven.
1. Clean the Interior
In this step, the oven does most of your work for you. What you are essentially doing here is cooking it clean.
• In a microwave-safe glass bowl, pour a cup or two of water. Add vinegar or citrus fruit slices. The acid helps clean the surfaces and the aroma helps remove the odor.
• Place the bowl in the oven and press start. Once the water is boiling and window on the door fogs, press the stop button. This step alone should get rid of that lingering popcorn smoke smell or fish odor.
• Wipe the interior clean with a clean, soft cloth or sponge. Avoid scratching the interior surfaces with abrasive cleaners, an old sponge or a dirty cloth. Repeat the previous step if necessary.
• If your oven has a removable turntable, wash the platter separately.
2. Clean the Oven Door and Gaskets
Clean the glass portion of the door with the acidic solution used on the interior. If necessary, use a conventional glass cleaner. Avoid getting that cleaner it on the gaskets.
Next, attempt to clean the gasket with plain water. If that doesn’t work, wipe it quickly with the acidic solution and wipe again with clean water.
3. Clean the Exterior
Wipe down the exterior with the acidic solution and dry with a paper towel. Be sure to clean the vent grill which captures oil, dust and odors.
If a bad microwave experience permeated your Laurel,MT, home with smoke and foul odors, help is available. There are residential odor mitigation specialists available to help return that fresh and clean smell to your home.
Your Leader in Fire Damage Restoration
SERVPRO restoration technicians know that damage increases and restoration costs escalate the longer neutralization, corrosion control and cleaning is delayed. When homeowners prolong the restoration of their home, they extend the effects brought on by smoke exposure. It is important to call SERVPRO as soon as the firefighters are done putting the fire out.
Here are some things to do after you experience a fire. Of course do not hesitate to contact SERVPRO immediately for help.
1. Limit movement in the home to prevent soot particles from being embedded into upholstery and carpets.
2. Keep hands clean so as not to further soil upholstery, walls and woodwork.
3. Place clean towels or old linens on rugs, upholstery and carpet traffic areas.
4. If electricity is off, empty freezer and refrigerator and prop doors open.
5. Clean and protect chrome with light coating of petroleum jelly or oil.
6. Wash houseplants on both sides of leaves.
7. Change HVAC filter.
8. Tape double layers of cheesecloth over air registers
SERVPRO is available 24/7, 365 days a year.
What You Should Know About Boarding Up Your Home in an Emergency
Board up window in a Broadview, MT home
If you live in hurricane country, you may be familiar with emergency board up services to protect your home from damage. But did you know there are lots of other good reasons to board up your home’s windows and doors in Broadview, MT? Consider a few of them and whether you might take advantage of it to safeguard your home.
Benefits of Boarding Up Your Home
- Prevent additional damage from weather or animals
- Reduce the risk of property loss from theft and looting
- Helps keep your insurance coverage by showing them you are taking appropriate measures to prevent more damage or theft
- Reduce your risk of liability by keeping people and pets out and preventing injury
Keep Your Home Safe and Your Insurance Intact
When you board up your home following fire damage, you are preventing rain, wind, hail or snow from causing additional problems. You are also keeping rodents, birds and other pests from taking up residence or contaminating the area. Perhaps one of the greatest problems is looting. When someone unscrupulous discovers your home is not being lived in and has easy access, you are in danger of them salvaging anything they can get their hands on to pawn or sell on the streets, or even from squatting on your property. Boarding up your doors, windows or openings cause by fire damage to show your insurance agent that you are doing every thing in your power to prevent further damage.
Don’t try to take on the job yourself - a board up can be an overwhelming task and would be best done by an emergency board up service in Broadview, MT. They can make sure everything is secure and can avoid causing additional damage by ensuring all fasteners go into secure places. They may also use tarps where appropriate. Whether you are doing the whole house or just an opening or two, boarding up can save a lot of grief.
Post-Fire Checklist: 6 Things To Do Immediately
Board up damaged windows after fire damage in Broadview,MT
House fires don’t only happen to other Broadview, MT, homeowners. If you find yourself dealing with a residential fire, you probably want to stare fire restoration as soon as possible. Still, jumping the gun can be disastrous.
Here Are Six Things you Should do Immediately After a House Fire
1. Find a Place To Stay
Staying safe after a fire must be your primary concern. If your house has sustained fire damage, look for a long-term solution. Remember, you must find housing that accommodates you, your family and your pets.
2. Board-Up Damaged Windows and Doors
Your post-fire home may not be weathertight. It may also attract criminals. To protect your home until you can begin fire restoration, board up damaged windows and doors.
3. Contact Your Insurance Company
Your insurance adjuster will probably want to inspect fire damage as soon as possible. Once you are your family members are safe, contact a representative from your fire insurance company.
4. Work With Law Enforcement
Police investigators and firefighters will likely prepare an incident report. This report identifies the cause of your house fire. It is also essential for collecting insurance payments.
5. Prepare a Damage List
For both insurance and remediation purposes, you need a list of damaged property. Before a fire, try to create a list of your personal belongings. Add and subtract items occasionally to keep your list current and accurate.
6. Contact a Restoration Service
Even if your house fire is minor, you may have extensive smoke damage. By working with a reputable restoration service for smoke cleaning and other remediation, you put specialized skill and equipment to work for you.
House fires can be devastating. Fortunately, you don’t have to leave your home’s recovery to chance. By taking a few critical steps in the days following a fire, you increase your odds of having a successful fire restoration.
How To Administer Basic Aid to Burn Victims
Fire damage in Broadview, MT
If your commercial property in Broadview, MT, catches fire, the damage to the building may not be the only problem you have to address. Fire damage to your building is worrisome enough, but if people are burned by the fire, you may have to administer some basic burn first aid. Minor burns can be treated by cooling, applying lotion and bandaging to keep the burn clean, but major burns require emergency treatment.
Symptoms of Major Burns
Before you can determine how a burn should be treated, you must first assess the type of burn it is. A major burn will display certain characteristics:
- Parched skin with the texture of leather
- Patches of black, brown or white where skin has charred
- Deep wounds
- Diameter of three inches or more
- Located on the extremities, groin, buttocks, face or major joints
If you see any of these symptoms, call emergency services immediately. The burn victim will likely need professional medical help for the fire damage to his or her body.
Aid for Major Burns
While you are waiting for the EMTs to arrive, you can help a person with major burns by keeping them comfortable, safe and as calm as possible. You do not need to apply the same first aid principles as you would with a minor burn, as most of those steps may cause more harm than good. You can cover the burn with a wet cloth to cool it off, but never submerge a major burn in water. If the burn can be elevated above the heart, that can help slow blood loss. Move the individual to a safe location, and make sure he or she is breathing normally.
Fire damage to your building can be mitigated by remediation experts, but injuries to a human require first aid or medical attention. Look for signs to distinguish between major and minor burns and respond accordingly.
4 Ways To Protect Your Pets From Fire
Taking these four steps toward pet safety can pay off in the event of a fire emergency.
A little preparation can go a long way when it comes to keeping your pets safe in the event of a fire emergency. Here are a few pet preparation steps to add to your fire safety plan.
1. Include pets in fire safety and evacuation plans. Your family's fire evacuation strategy should account for pets. Plan how to get pets out of the house if possible. Keep in mind that pets may be frightened and keep carriers or leashes in a convenient location for making a quick exit.
2. Avoid open flames. This preventative step can help to reduce the risk of your pet sustaining minor burns as well as a full-scale fire emergency. Never light open-flame candles at low levels or near the edges of a table where a pet can knock these candles over or end up with a singed tail.
3. Make sure pets cannot turn on the stove. Some dogs are tall enough to turn the knobs of a stove. This can result in dangerous consequences that range from gas leaks to fires. Consider using a pet safety gate or other methods for keeping pets out of the kitchen while you are not at home.
4. Gather pet ownership and vaccination records in a firebox. In the event of a fire, it is best to have all of the important papers for your home, family, and pets ready to go in a firebox. Make sure your evacuation plan accounts for the location of this box.
Taking these four steps toward pet safety can pay off in the event of a fire emergency. You can also reduce the likelihood that your pet will cause a fire that may endanger every resident of your home and damage your property. If you experience a fire at your home, contact residential damage restoration experts located in Billings, MT. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPRObillings.com/.
Dealing With Water Damage Post-Fire
If your home was recently in a fire, it is understandable if you want to begin the remediation process as soon as possible.
Dealing with fire damage after a fire can be stressful in and of itself, but adding water damage to the mix can be the icing on a burnt cake. Prolonged use of a fire hose can result in moisture issues, damaged items and structural problems. Fortunately, you can prevent excessive damage by taking care of those water problems right away—or rather, by hiring a Billings, MT, water restoration team to cleanup the damage for you. Your local remediation team can help reduce damage caused by a handful of common problems:
• Moisture damage from the hose
• Moisture damage from a sprinkler system
• Damage caused by burst pipes
• Cleanup after a sewage backup
Cleanup Efforts You Can Perform
Depending on the extent of the fire, your remediation team may or may not be able to arrive right away. Because mold can develop within 24 hours of a water problem, and because sitting water and fire damage can be harmful to your home’s structure, you may want to take measures yourself to prevent as much damage as possible. Here are a few things you can do before help arrives:
• Limit movement within the home to prevent soot particles from further embedding themselves into your carpet and upholstery.
• Place towels or old linens over carpet, upholstery and other furniture.
• Change your HVAC filter and tape cheesecloth over air registers.
• Wash the leaves of your houseplants and remove them from the home for the time being.
You should only stick around to do the above if your home is in a safe condition. If you think that your home is not safe to be in, use your better judgment and stay out of it until help arrives.
If your home was recently in a fire, it is understandable if you want to begin the remediation process as soon as possible. However, use your better judgment and only enter the home if you think it is safe to do so. More importantly, call your Billings, MT, fire damage restoration team for help with the bulk of the cleanup. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPRObillings.com/.
What to Do After a Kitchen Fire
What to Do After a Kitchen Fire
If you are the victim of a kitchen fire and want to find a solution, you are likely wondering where you should turn for answers. No matter how many steps you take to safeguard your home from the threat, you can never eliminate the risk of a kitchen fire, and these fires can spread before you know it, causing fire damage to your entire home.
Even when you put the fire out right away, it will still leave a lingering smoke odor on your walls and floors. Firefighters will take many steps to put the fire out before anyone gets hurt, such as breaking windows and spraying water into your home. The effort of the rescue squad can prevent you and your family from getting injured, but it will also cause additional problems for your smoke damaged home.
When you want to repair your smoke damaged home so that you can live in it safely, a fire restoration team will give you a hand. They will begin by cleaning soot from walls and addressing the lingering smoke odor. With their education and training, they will get the fire damage under control and provide you with peace of mind.
If the fire has damaged your personal belongings, the team will repair them at another location and provide you with outstanding results. When they have finished cleaning soot from walls and taking care of the other fire restoration tasks, you will know that you have made the right call. Visit http://www.SERVPRObillings.com for more information on fire damage.
Common Causes of Residential Fires
Common Causes of Residential Fires
If you would like to keep yourself and your family out of harm's way, learn about the most common causes of house fires. Cooking mistakes are the No. 1 reason that people face residential fires, so set timers, install smoke detectors and always monitor your stove while you are using it.
If a space heater causes your house to catch on fire, you could have a smoke damaged home before you know it. Wires that are not insulated properly can also cause you to face fire damage when you least expect to encounter the threat, and you will be cleaning soot from walls before you know it.
Fixing a Smoke Damaged Home
If a fire has inflicted fire damage to your home and you want to minimize the impact, turning to a fire restoration team is the best choice. Not only will they begin by cleaning soot from walls, but they will also use air filters to remove the lingering smoke odor.
A professional fire restoration team knows how hard it can be to face this problem and will do what it takes to put your worries to rest. When they complete the task and you notice that the lingering smoke odor is gone, you will be pleased with your decision. Our team will impress you with their ability to reverse fire damage, and we are confident that you will be happy when you see what we can do. Visit http://www.SERVPRObillings.com for more information on fire damage.
HVAC: Is Your Fire Restoration Plan Overlooking a Crucial Trouble Spot?
HVAC: Is Your Fire Restoration Plan Overlooking a Crucial Trouble Spot?
After your fire, you got to work as quickly as possible. You spent hours cleaning soot from walls, venting out your smoke damaged home and using an ozone machine to filter your air supply. So why are you still dealing with lingering smoke odors? The answer may lie in your HVAC system.
HVAC Systems and Household Fire Damage
HVAC systems work to circulate temperate air through your home under normal conditions. During fires, however, the vents they use to do their job act as perfect conduits for smoke. Soot particles that travel through these channels can get embedded in filter materials, collect on the insides of ductwork and stick to other inaccessible surfaces.
What happens when you turn your heating or air conditioning back on? Contaminated climate appliances produce lingering smoke odors. If you're not careful, the dirty air coming out of your HVAC devices might also ruin your clothes, carpets and other porous materials. It can also create layers of dirt that will have you cleaning soot from walls all over again.
Dealing With HVAC Fire Damage
How can you ensure that your HVAC system doesn't make your smoke damaged home a living nightmare? The secret lies in contracting with restoration services that can perform thorough internal cleanings. Since fires produce extremely hot gasses, it may be a good idea to work with someone who can also inspect your hardware for unseen problems.
Visit http://www.SERVPRObillings.com for more information on fire damage.
How to Safely Use a Space Heater
How to Safely Use a Space Heater
During the cold months of winter, people from around the world turn up their thermostats or plug in their space heaters, but you need to keep a few safety tips in mind as you move forward. If you don't use them the right way, space heaters can cause fire damage and create a lingering smoke odor.
You can keep your space heater 3 feet away from furniture and anything else that can burn when you don't want your property to become a smoke damaged home. Unless you want to start cleaning soot from walls, never use your space heater when you are not home or when you go to sleep.
Fixing Fire Damage
If you have experienced a fire in spite of your effort to avoid one, you can take several steps to repair your smoke damaged home. A fire restoration crew will address the issue by placing filters throughout your home to combat the lingering smoke odor, but they will also get to work cleaning soot from walls.
If the fire has damaged your personal belongings and you want to preserve them, your team will ship your items to an off-site location for repair. Although they might not be able to save everything that you own, they can give you the best possible chance of reversing the damage. Visit http://www.SERVPRObillings.com for more information on fire damage.
Smoke: Often the Worst Part of a House Fire
Smoke: Often the Worst Part of a House Fire
If you have ever sat around a campfire, you know how obnoxious smoke can be. Not only can it cause your eyes and lungs to burn, but lingering smoke odor can be impossible to eliminate. While nobody wants to go through a house fire in Billings, everyone should be prepared for what is often the worst
part of a residential house fire: having a smoke-damaged home. Whether your home is damaged from a candle, space heater, or cooking or electrical fire, fire restoration service professionals have the expertise to combat smoke using the following four steps.
1. Taking Note of Damage
The minutes, hours, and days following a home fire are usually stressful. First, firefighters must ensure that no one remains inside the house. Then, they often must use extraordinary measures to extinguish
blazes. When restorers arrive to survey fire damage, they often must board up windows and seal doors to prevent looting, vandalism, and other criminal acts.
2. Fixing the Structure
Before restorers can focus on cleaning soot from walls, they usually must fix the structure. Since fire- related water damage can cause floors to buckle and walls to sag, initial repairs are often costly and
time consuming. When the structure is safe to enter, the fire restoration service can focus on removing smoke odors from your smoke-damaged home.
3. Cleaning Personal Belongings
Your home is more than just a roof and walls. Rather, it is important to you because of the things inside it. Since fire restorers take salvageable personal belongings off-site to clean, they often can work on restoring your keepsakes while your house is being repaired.
4. Removing Remaining Smoke
Smoke odors can linger forever if restorers aren’t careful to completely remove them. Using deep- cleaning methods, the restoration service clears soot from HVAC systems. Then, they use special filters
to remove smoke and soot particles from the air. Smoke is often the worst part of a residential house fire. Generally, though, by working with a fire
restoration service in City, State, you can restore your smoke-damaged home to normal. Visit http://www.SERVPRObillings.com for more information on fire damage.