Recent Fire Damage Posts

Fire Safety Myths About the Festive Season

12/20/2021 (Permalink)

Christmas tree and ornaments with decorated mantle in the background If you experience a holiday house fire, you can count on SERVPRO of Paulding/Polk Counties 24/7, 365 to begin your fire restoration process.

Fire safety is something that is always important for a household to practice, but did you know
that some seasons tend to be more dangerous than others? Winter is the most common time of
year that a house fire will break out, and there are many reasons why this could be the case.

Part of the reason why fires are so common during the wintertime has to do with the way we
celebrate the holidays. From dangerous décor to cooking conundrums, there are a lot of
opportunities to let fire safety lag when the Christmas season rolls around.

If you have not considered how to be fire-safe during this festive time, read on as we dispel
myths that might be hazardous.

Dispelling Fire Safety Myths for the Holidays

Fake Christmas trees are a fire hazard. While fake Christmas trees might be flammable, real
Christmas trees are actually a much larger fire hazard. While they certainly can be used safely,
it is vital to water the tree every day, avoid putting it near any heat sources and never allow it to be near an open flame. Dried needles are extremely combustible, so exercising caution is key.

Christmas lights are a safe alternative to candles. Before electricity, candles were a common form of Christmas decoration. While lights are certainly a safer alternative, lights can be dangerous, too. Strands that are frayed or damaged can spark and cause a fire, and plugging in too many lights together can be a serious fire hazard, too. While Christmas lights are much safer than candles for decoration, they still have their own dangers that should be considered.

It is safe to leave lights on overnight. While having your house decorated for the holidays is
an exciting thing, it is important that you do not leave your electric decorations on when they will
be unattended. Always unplug lights before going to sleep or leaving the house—if a fire were to
begin due to your lights, this would prevent it from happening at a time where it is more likely to go unnoticed by you and your household.

If you experience a holiday house fire, you can count on us. We are here 24/7, 365 to begin your fire restoration process. Contact us today to learn more about the services we offer.

Fall Fire Safety

10/6/2021 (Permalink)

flames under servpro logo with fall fire safety tips Trust the experts at SERVPRO of Paulding/Polk Counties should you have fire damage at your home or business.

The fall season brings cooler temperatures, beautiful colors, and an abundance of outdoor activities. Plan ahead this season to help ensure it is safe from potential fire hazards.

According to the National Fire Protection Agency, cooking fires are the number one cause of home fires and injuries. The leading cause of fires in the kitchen is unattended cooking. Here are some helpful hints when cooking your fall family dinners.

• Stay in the kitchen while you are frying, grilling, boiling, or broiling food.

• If you are simmering, baking, or roasting food, check it regularly, remain in the kitchen while the food is cooking, and use a timer to remind you that you are cooking.

• Keep anything that can catch fire, like oven mitts, wooden utensils, food packaging, or hand towels, away from the stovetop.

If you have a cooking fire, consider the following safety protocols to help keep you and your family safe.

• Just get out! When you leave, close the door behind you to help contain the flames.

• Call 911 or the local emergency number after you get out safely.

• For an oven fire, turn off the heat and keep the oven door closed.

• If you try to fight the fire, be sure others are getting out and you have a clear path out.

• Keep a lid nearby when you’re cooking to smother small grease fires. Smother the fire by sliding the lid over the pan and turn off the stovetop. Leave the pan covered until it is completely cooled.

If you are doing any outdoor cooking around a fire pit, consider the following to keep it a fun, but safe time for all:

• Check the wind conditions prior to starting the fire.  Wind can make it hard to light the fire or blow embers around to surrounding  brush or structures.

• Always have a fire extinguisher or water source nearby, like a water hose or water bucket.

• Never leave the fire unattended.

• Keep all children and pets at least three feet from the fire.

Destroy Odors with Deodorization

9/13/2021 (Permalink)

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.

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® of Paulding/Polk Counties professionals provide specialized services that can rid your home or business of offensive odors left by fire or smoke damage. SERVPRO® of Paulding/Polk Counties 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 own 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 and upholstery, electronics, art, flooring, walls, ceilings, HVAC air ducts and more.

Ask SERVPRO® of Paulding/Polk Counties to explain the various deodorization methods available and which will work best for you.

If you or a customer suffer a fire damage or some other accident and require deodorization services, contact SERVPRO® of Paulding/Polk Counties. 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.”

Deep Fryer Safety

8/25/2021 (Permalink)

deep fryer on counter with food SERVPRO of Paulding/Polk Counties are your local experts to help you turn that kitchen fire damage back into a functioning kitchen.

Here in the south, fried foods are a necessary food group. It's as essential to our way of life as sweet tea. Frying foods at home is much easier thanks to residential deep fryers. So if you find yourself hankering for some fried chicken or veggies, following these tips to ensure you don't need to call the fire department or SERVPRO of Paulding/Polk Counties. 

*Know your oil smoke point. Each type of cooking oil has it's own smoke point. This is the temperature that your oil begins to smoke and could catch fire. 

*Don’t overfill your deep fryer. Most deep fryers have a max fill line. What most people don't account for is that this should include the food, not just the oil. Overfilling your deep fryer could result in spilling oil and causing a fire and uneven cooking due to the oil temperature dropping. 

*Do not deep fry wet food. Water can cause hot oil to splash and spill over potentially resulting in a fire. Most frozen foods are already mostly dry, but fresh foods can contain a lot of moisture and need to be patted down before putting in hot oil. 

*Keep your deep fryer in clear surroundings. Many deep fryers aren't cool to the touch when cooking. Make sure the are around your deep fryer is free from flammable and combustible materials. 

*Make sure your deep fryer has a break-away cord. This is a standard safety feature on most home deep fryers to keep the fryer from tipping over if the cord is tripped up by something or someone. However, not all have this so inspect yours and use accordingly.

*Have a lid on hand. While not necessary, smothering is the safest way to put out a grease fire. If your deep fryer doesn't come with a lid, find something you can use that will work just as well. 

*Keep a fire extinguisher handy. There are many people who've never thought to have a fire extinguisher in their kitchen in case of a fire. There are many options available for a fire extinguisher made for home use, so make sure you have one to on hand in your kitchen.

*Keep track of your temperatures. Many deep fryers have a built in temperature gauge to track how hot your oil is and make sure your fryer is cooking at the proper heat. These can malfunction so having a separate clip-on thermometer as a back up is a great idea. 

*Dispose of oil properly. Always let the oil cool down completely before storing or disposing of it. If storing, make sure to filter out all food particles so your oil doesn't spoil prematurely. If disposing, make sure to pour into a air tight container. Never pour oil down a drain as it can cause the drain to clog and back up. 

*Use proper protective equipment. Most foods won't splatter as long as excess moisture is removed, but fatty foods like bacon will splatter regardless. Using the handle on the fryer basket will protect you, but having protective gloves as secondary protection is always a good idea. 

Should you find yourself faced with a kitchen fire, trust the experts at SERVPRO of Paulding/Polk Counties to help you make it "Like it never even happened."

*Source: Deep Fryer Safety Tips

Do you know the different types of smoke damage?

7/26/2021 (Permalink)

black smoke damage on beige walls If you are in need of restoration due to fire and smoke damage, you can count on SERVPRO of Paulding/Polk Counties.

Every house fire is unique and causes specific types of damage based on what the initial source was, how long it burned and what was consumed by the flames. One of the ways that fire damage can manifest itself is via smoke residue left behind throughout the house.

The severity of smoke damage depends on several factors, but identifying it quickly and calling in your restoration team to have it handled is always recommended.

The Types of Smoke Damage That May be Present After a Fire

Wet Smoke Damage. Damage from wet smoke is generally a result of fires that burn at a lower temperature. These fires do not have as many flames but will produce an excess of smoke that can thickly coat the surfaces of your home. It can often feel sticky and wet to the touch, hence the name. Because of how it adheres to surfaces and saturates the air with a strong odor, wet smoke is one of the most difficult types to eradicate from a home.

Dry Smoke Damage. A hot, high-temperature fire such as one from a flammable liquid or a large number of open flames will produce a more dry smoke. This will result in smoke residue that is dry and powdery, which can settle into minuscule crevices and impact areas relatively far away from where the flames broke out in the home.

Protein Smoke. Associated with foods or other flammable organic materials catching fire, protein smoke is a unique type that results in a buildup of soot. Soot is quite dangerous, and this type of soot is generally difficult to see because it will be light in color. The residue it leaves behind is typically easy to feel, however, and it will likely cause a lingering odor as well.

Petroleum Smoke. Any time an oil-based material is burned, it will let off petroleum smoke. It produces an extreme odor and is generally quite dark in color, which can permanently discolor upholstery or wood if left untreated.

If you are in need of restoration due to fire and smoke damage, you can count on us. Call us today (770) 505-0555 to learn more.

Understanding the Classes of Fire Damage

7/21/2021 (Permalink)

fully engulfed home in flames If you have had fire damage to your home, SERVPRO of Paulding/Polk Counties can help out.

If you have experienced a fire in your home, you are likely navigating through the complicated aftermath of assessing the damage, filing an insurance claim and obtaining trusted home restoration to take care of the damages.

Throughout this process, firefighters, insurance agents and restoration teams will want to discuss the damage with you, so it is important to understand exactly what they mean.

Professionals use a series of classes to evaluate fire damage in order to create an organized system. The classes of fire damage have to do with the fire’s origins, as many times, this will indicate the type of damage that is caused. The start of the fire and the combustible materials involved have a large bearing on the extent and severity of the damage, so here is a guide to common terms you may come across.

The 6 Classes of Fire Damage

Class A: Class A fire damage is a result of a fire that occurs when flammable, solid materials are ignited, such as wood, cloth, paper and plastic.

Class B: When a fire starts due to liquids that are ignited—or in some cases, flammable solids that turn to liquids—it is considered Class B damage. This is the class designated for fires related to gasoline and other flammable chemicals that might be the source of the flames.

Class C: Any flammable gas, such as propane, butane and any others, will lead to Class C fire damage.

Class D: There are combustible metals that can cause fires, and if they do, they will cause Class D fire damage. Magnesium, potassium and sodium are all examples of combustible metals that can cause fires.

Class E: Class E is actually quite similar to Class A and B, but has to involve an electrical component as well. It will still require a fire due to flammable solids or liquids, but these items will be ignited by an electrical spark to be considered Class E.

Class F: This type of fire damage is similar to Class B because it involves ignition from cooking oils and fats, but these often burn much hotter and cause much more severe damage than a Class B fire.

If you have had fire damage to your home, we can help out. Contact us at any hour (770) 505-0555 to learn more about our fire restoration process and get a quick response to your home or business