Recent Fire Damage Posts

Water Damage: The Unexpected Result of a Fire

7/26/2021 (Permalink)

Firefighters extinguishing a house fire Firefighters must extinguish the fire fast to prevent your home from being fully burned. To do so, they saturate the affected area with water.

Water Damage: An Unexpected Fire Result

Fire damage in your home can be extensive, even if firefighters catch it before it consumes the whole house. What many people often don't consider is that significant water damage is often part of the aftermath of a house fire. If a fire breaks out in your home in Finley, WA you will probably need to hire restoration experts who specialize in both fire and water remediation techniques.

Damage From the Fire

Smoke and soot are likely to be your main problems during restoration. Fire creates both issues, and they permeate any space the fire touches. Fire can also cause flooding, however. High temperatures rage during a house fire. It doesn't take a long time for heat to cause other problems:

  • Melted or damaged pipes
  • Melted supply lines
  • Cracked toilets

Once the heat starts to melt pipes and supply lines, the water inside them leaks out and wreaks havoc. If your home is equipped with a sprinkler system, this can minimize the fire damage, but it also increases the likelihood that your home and its contents will be damaged by water.

Damage From the Rescue

In order for your home not to be completely consumed, firefighters must put the fire out quickly. To do so, they release a large amount of water into the affected area. Water can come out of a fire hose at an alarming rate, and that water can add to the damage already plaguing your home. It can seep into the floor, causing floorboards to buckle. It can saturate the walls and the insulation behind it. If left unchecked, it can lead to a mold problem.

Remediation services in Finley, WA can tackle both water and fire damage after a fire ravages your home. Knowing what to expect may not make the problem go away faster, but it can lessen a little bit of the stress if you know the professionals you hire can address the whole issue.

How to Properly Clean Your Belongings After a Fire

7/8/2021 (Permalink)

Furniture with TV and other ornaments damaged by fire Fire damage in Richland, WA.

Content Cleaning

If you’ve had the unfortunate experience of dealing with a fire in your Richland, WA, home, you may now be focused on the aftermath of it all, which involves salvaging your belongings. Some people assume they must throw out their clothes, books, and other items simply because they smell like smoke, but that isn’t always the case. Although the smell is bothersome, dry cleaning is one of several ways to remove the odor and restore items.

Have Your Clothes Professionally Washed

If you’ve tried washing clothes in laundry detergent and the scent still lingers, you may want to consider enlisting help from professionals. Rather than attempting to remove the odor and any stains from your shirts, pants, and other accessories, bring the items to the dry cleaning company where experts can use various products that are meant to clean and deodorize clothes.

Use a Scrub Brush

When you’re trying to complete a thorough content cleaning of some of your other belongings, consider using a scrub brush to scrub away at any of the soot that may be left behind on items. It’s possible to use a scrub brush on many products, such as:

  • Tables
  • Chairs
  • Bureaus
  • Nightstands
  • Hardback books

Before you start scrubbing, it’s wise to put a mask on that will cover both your mouth and your nose so that you’re not breathing in the heavy scent of smoke while focusing on the cleaning process.

If there are a lot of items that must be cleaned but you don’t have time to take care of it all in one day, you could consider checking out content storage options in Richland, WA. Storage facilities may allow you to put those items away until you’re ready to give them the thorough cleaning they need.

After experiencing a fire in the home, you may now be focused on salvaging items and restoring the home back to its original condition. If you’re worried you’ll have to throw away some of your clothes and other valuable, important items, consider other cleaning alternatives, such as dry cleaning for clothes that currently smell like smoke.

Fire and Smoke Cleanup 101

6/4/2021 (Permalink)

Home with fire and smoke damage Fire damage

Tips That Can Help You After Fire And Smoke Damage

Fires, even small ones, create a great mixture of cleaning challenges because of the ways smoke and flames interact with the environment. The materials being burnt, heat, oxygen, moisture and gases interact to form smoke residues, unique chemical reactions and unique soot. SERVPRO is the expert in the proper cleaning techniques for each unique item damaged caused by a fire.

Here are some great cleaning tips and tricks for you after you have suffered from fire and smoke damage.

Do:

  • Call your insurance agent as soon as possible
  • Restrict movement in the area to avoid soot from being ingrained into carpet, upholstery and fabric.
  • Use gloves when touching items. Sometimes the ash and chemical reaction with oils from your fingers will leave a permanent fingerprint on items.
  • If your electricity is off, remember to remove all your food and brace the doors open to help avoid strong odors
  • If it’s winter and your heat is off, winterize your pipes as soon as possible to avoid frozen pipes
  • Keep your HVAC system off until it can be cleaned and serviced by a professional

Don’t:

  • Don’t attempt to wash walls, painted surfaces, shampoo carpets, clothing, fabrics or upholstery without first contacting your SERVPRO professional. Sometimes using wetting items will actually permanently set the soot and smoke.
  • Don’t turn on fixtures, appliances or electrical switches if there is water in the structure from the fire rescue attempts. Wiring may be wet or damaged and cause electrical shock. First consult with a trained and reputable fire restoration technician.
  • Don’t consume any food or beverages that may have been stored close to fire, heat or water. (They may be contaminated.)
  • Don't toss out items even if they seem destroyed. SERVPRO can often restore these items using state of the art techniques and equipment, including irreplaceable documents and pictures.
  • Don’t wait to call SERVPRO; your local experts on fire damage restoration. When fire damage takes control of your life, we help you take it back.

SERVPRO... The brand you know and trust.

Destroy Odors with Deodorization

5/4/2021 (Permalink)

A woman covering her nose Odors? Get Rid of Them For Good!

Even a small fire can cause odors for years to come if the affected areas are not properly cleaned and deodorized. Fire, smoke, and soot damage in your home or business can create unpleasant and potentially permanent problems. Water and mold damage or other issues can also be a culprit for funky smells and odors.

As various materials burn, the smoke produced travels throughout the structure, leaving odorous residues and deposits on surfaces and in hard-to-reach places. Unless fast, professional action is taken, these residues and deposits can cause permanent damage to contents and may result in resurfacing odors.

With technicians certified by the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration (IICRC) SERVPRO professionals can provide specialized services that rid your home or business of offensive odors left by fire, smoke, water or mold damage.

SERVPRO professionals do not cover up lingering odors with a fragrance: they seek out and remove the source of the odor.

Once the source is found, SERVPRO’s proprietary line of cleaning products is used to treat and prevent the odor from returning. Any restorable item in affected areas will also be professionally cleaned and deodorized, including furniture, draperies, upholstery, electronics, art, flooring, walls, ceilings, HVAC air ducts and more.

Ask a SERVPRO professional to explain the various deodorization methods available and which one works best for you.

If you or someone you know recently suffered fire damage or some other accident that requires deodorization services, Contact SERVPRO immediately for a free scope.

Whether it's fire, water, or mold damage or just a stubborn odor that refuses to go away, We’ll help make it “Like it never even happened.”

Frequently Asked Questions About Fire and Your Insurance

4/1/2021 (Permalink)

a house burned down, metal sheet lying on the floor A home suffered from fire damage in Richland, MA

Your insurance will cover most of the damage from a home fire on your property. Most homeowners and renters will receive sufficient coverage through their standard insurance policies. However, those with a higher risk may be excluded and need to take other measures.

What Coverage Is Offered To Protect Against Fire and Smoke Damage?

Your insurance policy will cover many of your expenses due to a home fire. The most common expenses they cover include:

  • Repairing your home
  • Replacing your personal belongings
  • Expenses related to lawsuits due to a spreading fire
  • Additional living expenses

Is Standalone Fire Insurance an Option?
You can purchase standalone fire insurance for your home. These policies offer additional coverage that protects you financially in the event of a home fire. They cover damage strictly related to fire, smoke, or explosions. While they don't cover as many perils as standard insurance policies, fire coverage is often cheaper. Therefore, this is a good option for people who live in older homes or those with a history of claims. It is also a great option for your secondary residence that is vacant for most of the year.

What Happens When Your Home Doesn’t Qualify for Standard Insurance?
If your house in Richland, WA has a high risk of catching fire, you may find that your home doesn't qualify for standard insurance. You may be denied some common reasons: living in an arson zone, being too far from the fire department, or living near a brush or a canyon. Fortunately, many homeowners who cannot receive coverage for fires can apply for government-backed insurance policies that have fewer qualifications.
You can expect your standard insurance coverage to pay for you to hire a fire restoration company and start getting back to normal after a fire. Additionally, standalone policies are an option for people looking for cheaper options. They are also great for protecting your vacation home from a vacant home fire. If you cannot get a standard insurance policy, there are government-backed options that are easier to qualify for.

Smoke and Soot Cleanup After a House Fire

12/20/2020 (Permalink)

Walls inside a home covered in smoke and soot Cleaning Up Smoke, Soot And Odors After A Small House Fire

Even with a small house fire, 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 Tri Cities West 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 – 509-943-9290

House Fire? What You Can Do Until Restoration Help Arrives

12/9/2020 (Permalink)

A picture of a burnt kitchen with a woman standing in the center Fire Restoration By SERVPRO Experts. The Premier Fire Restoration Company

A house fire can be devastating and leave you in a panic to put things back together. Many people start trying to clean up the mess right away but sometimes trying to clean it can cause more damage.

Here is what you can do until restoration help arrives

  • Limit movement in your home to prevent soot particles from spreading and additional damage from occurring.
  • Place clean towels or old linens on rugs and high traffic areas.
  • coat chrome faucets, trim and appliances with petroleum jelly or oil.
  • place aluminum foil or wood blocks between furniture legs or wet carpet.
  • DO NOT wash any walls or painted surfaces.
  • DO NOT shampoo carpets or upholstery.
  • DO NOT clean any electrical equipment.
  • DO NOT send clothing to a dry cleaner since improper cleaning may set smoke odor.

The first 48 hours after a fire can make the difference between restoring versus replacing your property and personal belongings. SERVPRO of Tri-Cities West can help prevent fire damage from creating long-term problems, restore your contents and help you get your home cleaned up.

SERVPRO professionals provide timely response with mitigation services ranging from fire, smoke and soot removal to content claims inventory and document restoration. SERVPRO has state of the art equipment and highly trained technicians to restore property. These services help ensure your property, belongings and memories are restored to preloss condition when possible.

Call SERVPRO for a FREE scope

Tips From FEMA When A Wildfire Threatens

7/8/2020 (Permalink)

When a wildfire threatens your home or business

We are getting into the wildfire season and it is best to be prepared. Print this out in case you ever have to evacuate your home or business because a wild fire threatens your property. Keep it with an emergency supply kit. Always evacuate if you’re in question but if you have plenty of time you can follow this list to try to prevent damage.

  • Close windows, vents, and doors
  • Shut off all utilities if possible
  • Seal attic and ground vents with precut noncombustible coverings
  • Turn of propane tanks
  • Place combustible patio furniture inside
  • Connect the garden hose to outside taps
  • Place lawn sprinklers on the roof and near above ground fuel tanks/lines
  • Wet or remove shrubs within 15 feet of the structure
  • Turn on your in-ground or lawn sprinklers if possible
  • Wear protective clothing
  • Take your emergency supply kit
  • Lock your home or business
  • Tell someone when you leave and where you are going
  • Choose a route awhile from fire hazards

If your property suffers fire, smoke or soot damage from a wildfire SERVPRO of Tri Cities West is here to make it “Like it never even happened.”®

Fire, Smoke and Soot Restoration Services

6/7/2020 (Permalink)

Making fire and smoke damage "Like it never even happened."®

SERVPRO of Tri Cities West can help provide a solution to your property's fire and smoke damage needs. 

Structural cleaning – After a smoke or fire damage, ceilings, walls, woodwork, carpeting and floors will often need a thorough cleaning. SERVPRO of Tri Cities West will pretest to determine the extent of the damage, and then use the specific equipment and cleaning products required to clean and protect the different types of surfaces found in your structure. Depending on the amount of soot, SERVPRO may even be able to reduce the cost of recovery by cleaning, eliminating the expense and hassle of replacing, repainting or refinishing the items.

Contents Cleaning – All of the restorable smoke damaged contents in the structure will be professional cleaned and deodorized including area rugs, furniture, draperies and upholstery. SERVPRO begins by carefully inspecting and testing each material to determine the appropriate cleaning methods and products to be used

Deodorization – SERVPRO of Tri Cities West provides specialized service the rid your structure of offensive odors left by fire or smoke damage. We do not merely cover up lingering odors with a fragrance; we seek out the source of the odor and remove it using special equipment.

If you have smoke, soot or fire damage call us today for a free scope! 509-943-9290