Recent Fire Damage Posts
Oven Fire In Condo
Recently, there was a three story condo that experienced a fire due to the oven catching fire. This resulted in the kitchen walls, ceilings, and floors being damaged by fire. The whole kitchen was also covered in smoke/soot as well as residue from extinguishers. The smoke from the fire traveled throughout the whole condo leaving all rooms with smoke, soot, and a smokey smell. The wood flooring of the condo was also stained with soot and ashes that was spread from foot traffic. This calls for restoration of the kitchen, the flooring throughout the whole condo, walls and ceilings affected by soot, and affected belongings. It is crazy to think that a three story condo needs essentially a whole makeover from an oven fire.
Small Fires Can have Big Effects
We have encountered many fire jobs that don’t necessarily burn the whole house down or seem to cause major damage. Although it might seem like there isn’t major damage, small fires can have major effects. For example, we inspected a home that experienced a fire caused by a dryer. The fire was contained to one room and there were significant damages to the ceiling and walls. Although it seems like the damages are limited to that room, pretty much the whole house was affected. This is mainly due to the smoke from the fire. The smoke went throughout all the rooms in the house and left all the walls and ceilings with a smoke smell. That smell must be removed either by using chemicals and cleaning or removing the walls and replacing them. Not only are the walls affected but also furniture, clothing, and other items in the home. This would call for a content cleaning and that would be a whole process. Not only is the smell from smoke a problem but so is soot. This is residue that is left from smoke that sticks to services that is hard to remove and can stain. All this work from a small dryer fire.
Fires can be very devastating disasters especially if they occur in your home. Here are some house fire facts to give you some insight and knowledge. In a five year period, house fires caused over 2,600 deaths and nearly $7billion in property damage. The top causes of fires in homes are cooking, heating equipment, and electrical malfunctions. It can take as little as 30 seconds for a small flame to turn into a major fire. On average, over 350,000 homes experience a structural fire each year. More than 3,000 Americans die in fires each year and at least one child dies from a fire every day. Hopefully these facts will let you know just how serious fires can be and you can take steps to avoid them.
How to Prevent Fire Damage in Your Home
Fires can start for many reasons and can be very disastrous. It is important to know of ways you can prevent fires from happening in your home. Luckily, there are many simple and easy tips you can follow to prevent fires in your home. Excess electricity flowing through items in your home can always be a potential fire hazard. That is why you should unplug items you are not using. You should also use surge protectors as they reduce the risk of fire. If you are cooking or lighting candles, it is a good idea to never leave flames unattended. It is also important to keep flammable items away from heat or flames. This can be keeping paper away from candles or trash cans away from heaters. It is also best to not smoke inside your home. Cigarettes can keep burning even when you think you’ve put them out. Changing out filters from heating systems and dryers can also prevent fires. Turning off heated appliances before you leave the house would also be wise to do.
Back in September, the Monrovia mountains were set ablaze after a huge wildfire occurred and damaged a large amount of land. We let the firefighters do their job when it came to this, but the problems that many Monrovians faced were smoke damages. Many homes and businesses were faced with a large amount of smoke damages that ranged from ashes and soot to a horrible smoke odor. Luckily here at SERVPRO we have the tools and the know how to help with any of these situations. We can help by getting rid of that nasty smoke odor by placing equipment and cleaning and wiping down the interior. We also recommend getting the air ducts cleaned during this process to help filter out the air for more clean air in the home or business.
After a fire loss occurs, contents in a home can sometimes have bad smoke damages to them. Here at SERVPRO, we are able to figure out what items can be saved and what items are a total loss. The items that can be saved will get wrapped up tight and taken into a storage pod. Once the fire mitigation has been completed, it is then time to clean the contents from the smoke damages. The nasty smoke will get inside of the items causing a horrible smoke odor to omit. We clean these items very thoroughly to ensure the smoke residue has been completely removed. Then we put it into an o-zone which will deodorize the items by taking away the oxygen from them. In the end we package them up and they are ready to be put back.
All along Southern California, there has been a recent surge in fires. The fires have been so bad that they have caused significant smoke damages to the valley between. These smoke damages range from smoke odor, ash and soot leftovers and content damages. This along with the recent COVID-19 virus has made things very difficult for people in the Southern California area. Here at SERVPRO we have helped as much as we can for both residential and commercial properties. We have done several jobs under these problems. Smoke damages can be hard thing to nail down but we can provide air duct cleaning, replacing insulation, pressure washing on the outside, and content cleaning of affected items. We can also place air scrubbers to help rid the air of the smoke odor.
Smoke damages are something that can be very hard to avoid. Whether it is from a forest fire or a nearby property, it can cause serious long-term damages. What ends up happening is that the smoke will travel from the location of the fire and will go through homes and businesses. You will then smell that BBQ smell that will stay within the walls and even latch onto items within a home. This can cause serious problems for anyone living in this home. Here at SERVPRO we specialize in smoke remediation and can offer many different solutions to help curb these damages. We can provide content cleaning, pressure washing, air duct cleaning and many other services to help with these damages. It is important to remember there is always options to getting you back in your home!
Return to Normal
Once the initial damage has been mitigated, it's time to get everything back to normal. Our franchise here in Monrovia, can also handle all of your reconstruction needs. This can vary from replacing damaged drywall to a full on kitchen remodel. Discuss with us how we can turn your negative into a positive and we will do our very best to accommodate. Most customers actually get really excited when we discuss remodeling options. Some clients get brand new kitchens, bathrooms, living rooms and even out door patios. When sever damages occur, it's difficult to simply replace and old aesthetic. Sometimes it's necessary for home owners to upgrade their home. It always turns out great and customers are happy to get a new appliances.
Here's a real interesting and safe tip to consider when it comes to fire damage. A Fire Marshall needs to tell you that it is safe to enter your home. The fire department will tell you what restrictions you're limited to. For example, you won't be able to use the electricity, there can be hot spots and dangerous wooden beams. This is why it's also crucial for you to call SERVPRO, you shouldn't be in a space that has been destroyed by a fire. We are trained to look out for specific dangers. We have to follow all regulations for safety and cleaning up. When it comes to fire damage, we can't just dump trash in your regular trash bins. Fire departments love to work with us for many reasons. Especially because we do follow their rules and make the restoration process very safe for everyone.
A small fire can create a lot of damage. We've been doing some major construction on a house that was damaged by a fire that was created by a candle. It's so important to blow out any candles even when you're leaving a room. No fire should be left unattended. The home owner was not home when her home suddenly went up in flames. A neighbor noticed smoke coming out of her dinning room window and immediately called the fire department. The home owner came home after work and realized that she left a candle on before leaving that morning. She was so lucky that the neighbor saw smoke when he did, the fire only affected the kitchen and dinning area. The rest of the house only had smoke stains. We had to remove all the furniture from the house and it was sad to see the loss of so many nice things. Her refrigerator and stove were melted, the dinning table was black with fire damage. We removed all the walls and now the house is ready for a brand new look. The homeowner is still in shock but is ready to start the designing process. She guaranteed us that she will never light another candle again!
Fire Damaged Trained
Fire damage requires experienced technicians who can clean and clear away all traces of smoke and damage caused by a fire. That's why we send all of our technicians to IICRC training. We expect the best from our team. There is no easy fix to remove smoke stains and odors caused by fire. SERVPRO has created some really special cleaning agents that actually remove all traces of smoke damage. There are many reasons why we're the best in the industry. We create our own unique products to complete all our jobs. We wouldn't trust any other product to complete the cleaning process. If only we could take a picture of the before and after SMELL of fire damage! You have to smell it to believe it!
Lake Arrowhead shivers
We are just in the beginning phases of a fire job in the beautiful area of Lake Arrowhead. This fire started with an electrical wire behind the walls and the fire had been burning for more than 45 minutes. The home owners tried to put the fire out on their own but did not succeed. They eventually called the fire department and had them come put the fire out. It just recently began to snow and rain causing even more damage to the property. We have a really big job in front of us and we are stepping up to the challenge. We have been driving some really big trucks up and down the mountain to dispose of all the damaged materials. We've been trying to enjoy the scenery up there too. It really is a beautiful place.
Candles for prayer
We just got a call about fire damage in a home. An elderly couple lit a candle while reading the bible and left it unattended for a long period of time. The candle fell over and burnt the table it was placed on. The home owners were not home when the candle fell over. They were so surprised and lucky that nothing else was burnt. The house did have a terrible lingering smell and they were having a hard time breathing. They rent the house they live and do not have renters insurance. The home owners also don't have home insurance on the property. We were able to create a payment plan and will go forward with cleaning of the contents inside the home.
Lily of the valley
We were called to restore a floral shop after it experienced fire damage. The shop had bunches of dried flowers hanging from the ceiling and they caught fire. The ceiling was charred and the owners were devastated. They had those bunches of dried flowers hanging since they opened the shop 10 years ago. This was the first time anything like this ever happened to them. In 10 years they never had any kind of disaster. Their insurance company agent was even astonished. We were able to restore the shop and get it back to it's beautiful state. The owners will not be hanging up dried flowers ever again. They promised to keep all flowers in jars of water. They thanked us with a delightful smelling bouquet made entirely of Lily of the valley.
The colors of fire
We are always heart broken when we get calls about fire damage. We know how heart breaking fire damage can be. The color of fire damage is black. The color black is associated with death and aggression. That's exactly what fire damage is like. Fire kills everything it touches with aggression. Just like fire, smoke damage leaves a black film around everything it touches. People usually assume that fires are red, orange and yellow, but in reality the only color you see is black. We use very special sponges to wipe away the color of smoke. These special sponges even reduce the smell of smoke. They are small but very powerful. They almost act like erasers. The small sponges remove all the smoke damage from walls, doors, windows and even portraits.
Wildfire Damage Event
The wildfires here in Southern California increase their impact because the Santa Ana winds add fuel to the devastating blazes that have encroached upon our area. According to the New York Times, fires broke out in Malibu on December 7, with at least 96,000 acres already burned in the Ventura area and 116,000 acres in Los Angeles County. Evacuations closed hundreds of schools and forced 200,000 of our neighbors to seek safety. The “Thomas Fire” in the Ventura area continued to burn with the aid of strong winds. This fire caused the closure of the 101 freeway and a boil-water advisory was issued for Ventura County. The Santa Ana winds that enabled the fires to rapidly increase their reach can have speeds more than 60 miles per hour. The National Weather Service had warned of “very rapid-fire growth” in this area. SERVPRO Meteorologist Lela Davis said that the Santa Ana winds were already very dry when they reached the Southern California valley, allowing them to quickly pull moisture out of vegetation, increasing the risk for wildfires. For the first time ever, a purple wind warning was issued under the color-coded system used to advise about high winds. This purple warning pushed wind expectations from the “high” category to “extreme”. Ready to help here at SERVPRO of El Monte we monitored this wildfire situation closely. Our thoughts are with those neighbors who were put in harms’ way during this event. In many cases, a wildfire can result in a total loss for a home or business, but in others it may be a partial loss, or can result in mild smoke damage. If your home or business is affected by a wildfire, SERVPRO of El Monte is Here to Help®.
SERVPRO of El Monte specializes in the cleanup and restoration of residential and commercial property after a fire, smoke or water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.
We have extensive experience handling the complexities of repairing the damage. SERVPRO of El Monte will check for water damage that may occur because of firefighting equipment, and residue left and ensure that there’s no odor left behind. Below are examples and a little definition of what kind of residues you might encounter after a fire.
Dry smoke residue results from a fast burning and high-temperature fire. Dry smoke will create smoke damage that is thin, dry, and powdery. Dry smoke damage is often times easier to clean.
Wet smoke residue results from a lower temperature or smoldering fire; it has a pungent odor and a sticky, smeary texture. These types of fires produce fewer flames but create a great deal of smoke.
Protein smoke residue is essentially invisible and can discolor paints, varnishes, and other finishes. Although protein smoke residue is invisible, it has an extremely strong and pungent odor.
Fuel Oil Smoke
Results from furnace smoke from duct returns in ventilation system and causes dangerous oily soot. Fuel oil smoke damage creates a very strong odor and can completely destroy upholstered items such as couches and mattresses. This residue can be relatively sticky and difficult to clean.
Fire Extinguisher Residue
Fire extinguisher residue mainly come from chemical fire extinguishers. Clean up is generally an easy but can vary.
SERVPRO of El Monte uses specialized equipment to handle the job. This includes chemical disinfectants, odor removers, bacteria treatments, moisture drying tools, air cleaners, and other products designed to target issues like soot and smoke.