Recent Fire Damage Posts

Home Fires and Smoke Damage Aftermath

2/3/2021 (Permalink)

house burned inside Property damage in fires means damage directly from the flames as well as damage that comes from the smoke.

Home fires are extremely scary. For those fortunate enough to get out of their home and get the fire contained quickly, the damage that the fire causes is often the focus. Flames can move throughout the home quickly, burning and ruining every item in their path. Once the flames have been put out, however, the home is left with smoke damage. Smoke damage can completely devastate a home if not properly and swiftly addressed. In fact, smoke damage can occur in rooms where the fire was not even present.

Property damage in fires means damage directly from the flames as well as damage that comes from the smoke. With so much attention placed on the flames, people often overlook the massive dangers linked to smoke damage. The following are some of the most common issues like to smoke damage after a home fire:

  • Smoke odor present throughout the home
  • Charring
  • Warped plastic
  • Warped wood
  • Discoloration
  • Yellow stains on walls
  • Yellow stains on ceilings
  • Household textiles covered in soot
  • Toxic air throughout the home
  • Smoke odor found on upholstered furniture, drapery, clothing, and carpets

Salvaging items that have smoke damage is a complicated issue. A smoke damage expert will need to assess the home and the impacted items to determine what can be saved. In addition, smoke damage experts will need to look throughout the home to tackle lingering smoke in less obvious places like y crevices and cracks where particles may linger. Since the smell of smoke can last for months following a fire, it is extremely important to get the damage assessed by a professional.

At SERVPRO of Altamonte Springs / Longwood, our fire damage repair and restoration specialists have years of experience in handling both fire damage and smoke damage. If you or a loved one have experience a home fire, please call us immediately for a free consultation.

Fire Safety Tips for Cooking During the Holidays

12/22/2020 (Permalink)

Mom cooking with kids on the kitchen While the kitchen is a place for cooking and congregating during times of celebration, it is important to remember fire safety.

The holiday season is here and that means family, fun, and delicious food. One of the greatest things about the holidays is spending time with loved ones, and that typically means sitting around the table to share a meal and laughs. Many families spend hours in the kitchen this time of year. Cooking turkey and ham, baking delicious desserts, and creating yummy casseroles make the holidays feel truly special.

While the kitchen is a place for cooking and congregating during times of celebration, it is important to remember that fire safety can never be ignored. Distracted chefs can be extremely dangerous in a home when a lot of cooking and baking is being done. As such, it is vital that all family members have a basic understanding of fire hazards and how to avoid them.

When you and your family are cooking this year, be sure to keep the following fire safety tips in mind:

  1. Any foods that are roasted, baked, or simmering must be checked on regularly
  2. Never leave the stove on in the kitchen if you plan to leave the room
  3. Pour hot grease in a garbage can
  4. Know where your fire extinguisher is located, preferably somewhere near the kitchen
  5. Do not keep wooden utensils, food packaging, towels, or oven mitts near the stovetop
  6. Utilize timers
  7. Do not leave the kitchen if you are frying, grilling, broiling, or boiling
  8. If an oven fire breaks out, keep the door closed and turn off the heat
  9. Stovetop fires should be smothered with a lid and then turn off the burner immediately
  10. When in doubt about a kitchen fire, get out of the home right away and call 911

At SERVPRO of Altamonte Springs / Longwood, we have many years of experience in fire damage repair and restoration. We wish everyone in our community a happy, healthy, and safe holiday season!

Fire Damage Specialists

3/21/2020 (Permalink)

No one ever expects horrible things to happen inside their Altamonte Springs or Longwood home.  House fires are something that most people think will never happen to them.  However, mishaps do take place, and one day it is possible that you have a fire inside your home.

Accidents happen, and many people find themselves in a situation where a minor fire starts in their home. If this ever happens to you, it's a good idea to call SERVPRO's fire damage experts in Altamonte Springs or Longwood.  Some people have small fires start inside their home, and they can quickly put it out.

However, even though you may not see an excessive amount of burn damage where the fire started it is still wise to call in SERVPRO to inspect the damage.  Many times a fire causes damage that is not in the exact area of the source of the blaze.  When a fire burns, it creates an excessive amount of smoke that spreads to all areas of your home.

The smoke a fire produces can cause a surprising amount of damage.  It can cause soot residue to build up on surfaces not close to where the fire started.  A fire started in one room could possibly create odors that are present in other areas of your home.  A fire sometimes embeds an unpleasant burnt smell into contents inside your home.

Any of these issues, if not treated correctly, might result in permanent damage to your home.  When you call in the professionals, it is now up to them to figure out every area fire or smoke damage may have affected.  Our staff is highly skilled at diagnosing every unique situation.  Our experienced team knows how to find things that get ruined in the most unexpected places.  Our team also knows the best procedures and practices we can use to mitigate the problem.

We are IICRC certified and skilled in all areas of fire damage restoration.  Our team uses the best equipment available in the industry to remove damage caused by the fire.

It is always a devastating experience when a fire starts inside your home.  Let our team take some stress out of the situation for you and call SERVPRO of Altamonte Springs/Longwood at (407) 830-9899 24 hours a day

Fire Safety for the Holidays!

11/30/2019 (Permalink)

Did you know that 1 in every 3 home Christmas tree fires are caused by electrical problems and that 1 in every 34 Christmas tree fires result in death?

The NFPA and several fire departments in the D.C. area recommend the following safety tips:

  • Make sure string lights have no loose connections, cracked lamps or frayed cords.
  • Use only a single extension cord that can reach your home's outlet without being too long and being tangled.
  • Use UL-approved lights and cords.
  • Make sure lights are off when you go out and before you turn in for the night.
  • Make sure all outdoor light connectors are away from metal rain gutters and off the ground.
  • Never use candles to light or decorate a tree.
  • 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.

If you have any questions on further safety tips, please contact your local fire department.

Fire Safety is Key in Fire Prevention!

8/28/2019 (Permalink)

According to the NFPA (National Fire Protection Association) there are on average of between 350,000 and 400,000 fires every year in the U.S. that is an average of 39.9 – 45.6 fires every hour!  That is a lot of house fires every year! Unfortunately a majority of these fires could have been prevented.

The key to fire prevention is fire safety awareness! 

According to the NFPA the top 9 leading causes of house fires are as follows.

Cooking- 42% of all house fires are caused by cooking related incidents.  For instance, an oven or stove left unattended. Something most of us are guilty of, but should never do, is leaving something on the stove unattended.  Even if it’s only for a moment, disaster can strike in an instant.

Children playing with fire- It is really important to teach children about fire safety.  All too frequently a lighter and/or matches are left where children can reach them.  It is important to teach your children about fire safety and the reasons why they should never play with fire. Be sure to have this conversation not just one time but once a week just to be sure they don’t forget.

Smoking- People falling asleep while smoking may not seem like a big deal however smoking is the source of many house fires leading to almost 1,000 deaths a year.  Lit cigarettes accidentally dropped on a number of household items can quickly become large fires!  Please, if you smoke in your home (which we strongly recommend not doing), make sure you are awake enough to finish it or extinguish it!

Heating- Every winter we hear about a home catching fire due to a heating source. If you have a furnace, remember to have it serviced regularly.  A more common cause of heating related fires is small space heaters.  If you are using space heaters try to purchase ones that turn off automatically when bumped or flipped over.  Always keep space heaters on a flat surface with nothing around them i.e. curtains, chairs, clothes, ext. 

Electrical- One of the leading culprits is the over-use of extension cords.  Surprisingly, just because there is an open plug doesn’t mean you can plug just ANYTHING into it.  Extension cords can safely pull a certain amount of amps, so be sure to have the right equipment for the job! You can figure out what extension cord is right for you simply by reading the label.  If there is ever any doubt, you are probably much better off to hire an electrician to provide you with permanent wiring.  It is also very advisable to have an electrician perform an annual checkup on your home’s wiring.

Candles- Candles are a completely preventable fire.  They should never be left unattended when all too often they are.  If you leave the room the candle should leave with you or be blown out. Forgotten candles are very dangerous. It is important that you always remember to blow them out when leaving the house, always double check!  Getting into this ritual could save you and your loved ones lives and a lot of grief.

Dryers- Dryers are all too often forgotten!  It is imperative for us to remember to empty out our dryer vents and be certain that they are properly vented.  Remember to maintain your dryer by cleaning the vents to the outside once a year.

Flammables in the House – There are a lot of products left around the home that are highly flammable (especially if the garage is attached to the home).  Be careful of where you place any flammable materials (fuels, oils, etc.).  Don’t place them next to a possible source of a fire as they can rapidly turn a bad situation into a disaster.  The simplest rule is to keep them contained and away from the home to the greatest extent possible.

Christmas Trees- It seems like nothing really sets the holiday mood like a live Christmas tree (great smell and just exceptionally authentic);  However, if you don’t keep it well watered and still proceed to wrap it with electrical cords (I mean… Christmas lights of course) it is a definite fire hazard.  If you let it get too dry it can quickly result in a fire so just check it frequently and leave the lights off if you are going to be away from home for a while. 

The fact of the matter is that most household fires are completely preventable.  Please be sure to exercise caution when it comes to your home.  Taking a few extra precautions can keep you and your loved ones safe!

If you have any questions please give us a call at (407)830-9899.

Regardless of the Cause, SERVPRO Always Responds Quickly to Fire Damage Issues!

6/27/2018 (Permalink)

Many residents in Central Florida enjoy setting off fireworks during the summer months, especially The 4th of July.  Sometimes things go wrong, however, and cause injuries to people or damage to property.  When areas outside your residence sustain damage in this manner, pests such as rodents and insects can come inside your dwelling all too easily. 
If your Altamonte Springs/Longwood house sustains fire damage in this manner, the holes burned into siding can seem minor.  However, rain water does not require large openings to infiltrate your home.  SERVPRO prepares our technicians according to IICRC standards to mitigate such situations adequately.   
Rainwater can also substantially damage insulation, wiring, and interior walls.  If burnt out areas occur around second story levels, water can damage ceilings, also.  SERVPRO technicians can remove affected areas of siding and help you locate matching sections. 
In homes where fire damage causes more extensive damage than just a few minor holes, SERVPRO employees are also able to remove the damaged materials so replacement work can happen more easily.  Often, though, we find that cleaning materials first reveals minimal damage that does not require this extra cost.  Saving our customers money through restoration by cleaning instead of replacement of materials means making everything "Like it never even happened." can cost considerably less than expected. 
SERVPRO of Altamonte Springs/Longwood wants you and your family to enjoy a safe and fun 4th of July.  When fire damage from any source causes your home damage, call us at 407-830-9899 so we can help you protect your home. 

Firework Safety This 4th of July!

6/27/2018 (Permalink)

Happy Independence day 4th of July Safety!

The last thing you want to experience this 4th of July is a fire at or on your home due the use of fireworks! Please read the following for some firework safety tips, provided by the National Council on Firework Safety

Recommended Safety Tips

  • Obey all local laws regarding the use of fireworks.
  • Know your fireworks; read the cautionary labels and performance descriptions before igniting.
  • A responsible adult SHOULD supervise all firework activities.  Never give fireworks to children.
  • Alcohol and fireworks do not mix.  Save your alcohol for after the show.
  • Wear safety glasses when shooting fireworks.
  • Light one firework at a time and then quickly move away.
  • Use fireworks OUTDOORS in a clear area; away from buildings and vehicles.
  • Never relight a “dud” firework.  Wait 20 minutes and then soak it in a bucket of water.
  • Always have a bucket of water and charged water hose nearby.
  • Never carry fireworks in your POCKET or shoot them into METAL or GLASS containers.
  • Do not experiment with homemade fireworks.
  • Dispose of spent fireworks by wetting them down and place in a metal trash can away from any building or combustible materials until the next day.
  • FAA regulations PROHIBIT the possession and transportation of fireworks in your checked baggage or carry-on luggage.
  • Report illegal explosives, like M-80s and quarter sticks, to the fire or police department.

And let’s not forget the safety of our pets!

  • Don’t bring your pets to a fireworks display, even a small one.
  • If fireworks are being used near your home, put your pet in a safe, interior room to avoid exposure to the sound.
  • Make sure your pet has an identification tag, in case it runs off during a fireworks display.
  • Never shoot fireworks of any kind (consumer fireworks, sparklers, fountains, etc.) near pets.

Altamonte Springs Smoke and Soot Damage!

3/23/2018 (Permalink)

Smoke and soot is very invasive and can penetrate various cavities within your home, causing hidden damage and odor. Our smoke damage expertise and experience allows us to inspect and accurately assess the extent of the damage to develop a comprehensive plan of action.  

Smoke and soot facts:

  • Hot smoke migrates to cooler areas and upper levels of a structure.
  • Smoke flows around plumbing systems, seeping through the holes used by pipes to go from floor to floor.
  • The type of smoke may greatly affect the restoration process.

Different Types of Smoke

There are two different types of smoke–wet and dry. As a result, there are different types of soot residue after a fire. Before restoration begins, SERVPRO of Altamonte Springs/Longwood will test the soot to determine which type of smoke damage occurred. The cleaning procedures will then be based on the information identified during pretesting. Here is some additional information:

Wet Smoke – Plastic and Rubber

  • Low heat, smoldering, pungent odor, sticky, smeary. Smoke webs are more difficult to clean.

Dry Smoke – Paper and Wood

  • Fast burning, high temperatures, heat rises therefore smoke rises.

Protein Fire Residue – Produced by evaporation of material rather than from a fire

  • Virtually invisible, discolors paints and varnishes, extreme pungent odor. 

Our Fire Damage Restoration Services

Since each smoke and fire damage situation is a little different, each one requires a unique solution tailored for the specific conditions.  We have the equipment, expertise, and experience to restore your fire and smoke damage.  We will also treat your family with empathy and respect and your property with care.

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?

Call Us Today – (407) 830-9899

SERVPRO Fire Damage Restoration for Your Altamonte Springs and Longwood Business

3/21/2018 (Permalink)

The damages from a fire can seem insurmountable, especially if many of your business contents were damaged.  We can help you salvage what isn't destroyed by the heat and flames of a fire, saving you from the hassle of replacing your contents.  Sometimes, the only damage is from soot that has settled onto hard surfaces.  This by-product of a fire must be removed quickly to preserve your equipment.  Without a fast wipe down and cleaning, soot could chemically etch your tools and equipment permanently.  This fast cleanup is crucial to getting you and your business back on track.

How SERVPRO can Help Both Homeowners and Businesses Recoup Their Losses 

In addition to cleaning and salvaging your contents, to stop further damage of we can complete a detailed checklist of your inventory.  Presenting this to your insurance carrier is the next step in receiving insurance policy payments to replace contents that cannot be salvaged. 

We will also note which contents can be refurbished by outside sources, as is the case with artwork and electronics.  Fire creates particulates that when airborne can find their way onto your electronics' interiors.  When you power these items on, and they have not been professionally cleaned, the power and soot combined can create secondary fires from electrical shorts.

Experienced Professionals Waiting to Assist You in Your Fire Damage Situation, No Matter How Large or Small 

Some fires are small and localized.  Don't let this trick you into thinking that the smoke and other damage you witness are inconsequential.  Soot has various toxins in it that can also affect your health. It should be professionally cleaned and removed from all affected surfaces.

If you've had fire damage, call SERVPRO of Altamonte Springs/Longwood at (407) 830-9899 so we can help you get back on track and get your doors reopened "Like it never even happened."