Recent Fire Damage Posts
Your home or business just had a fire - now what?
The first 24 hours after fire damage can make the difference between restoring versus replacing your property and personal belongings. SERVPRO® of Southwest Lubbock can help prevent fire damage from creating long term problems.
Under normal circumstances, within one hour from notice of a loss, a SERVPRO® of Southwest Lubbock professional will contact you to arrange a service. Within four hours of loss notification, a SERVPRO® of Southwest Lubbock professional will be on site to begin mitigation services. Finally, within eight business hours, a verbal job briefing will be communicated to the appropriate person.
Until a trained professional arrives, there are several things you can do to lessen long term damage.
- Limit movement in the home or business to prevent further damage.
- Place dry, colorfast towels or old linens on carpeted traffic areas to prevent more soiling.
- If electricity is off, empty refrigerator and prop doors open.
- Wipe soot from chrome on faucets and appliances then protect with a light coating of petroleum jelly or oil.
- Do not attempt to wash any walls or painted surfaces.
- Do not attempt to shampoo carpet or upholstered furniture.
- Do not attempt to clean any electrical appliances that may have been close to fire or water.
SERVPRO® of Southwest Lubbock professionals provide timely response with mitigation services ranging from fire, smoke and soot removal to contents claims inventory and document restoration. These services help ensure your property and belongings are restored to preloss condition when possible.
Ways You Can Prevent Fires in Lubbock, Tx Caused by Clogged Dryer Vents
Preventing fires in your home can be as easy as cleaning out your lint trap.
Ways You Can Prevent Fires Caused by Clogged Dryer Vents
It is no surprise to most people that having a fire within the home is incredibly damaging to anything in its path. What you probably may not realize is that, most times, fires can easily be prevented from starting in the first place. Your household dryer is a great example of this since many homeowners deal with dryer related fires all the time and the usual culprit would be a completely clogged dryer vent. In this particular case, the fire can be prevented if you maintain your dryer well throughout the year and ensure that its vent is kept clean and clear of buildup.
There are over 15,000 calls to local fire departments every single year for home-related fires and smoke issues. The unfortunate part is that a lot of these fires are caused by clogged dryer vents within the home. Some of these fires are very minimal, but others have been incredibly damaging when not caught in time.
To understand how these types of fires start within the home, you may want to know more about how dryers work. Some homeowners who are new to appliances and home maintenance may not even know that their dryer needs to be maintained. The way that dryers work is by creating hot air in the drum itself, and this is the hot air that is going to dry your clothing. You probably know of the small lint trap on the front of your dryer when you open its door, but excess lint passes through this filter and goes through the dryer vent. The dryer vent is often located on the outside of your home so that the hot air can be released outside. Because dryers get so hot, this hot air that is being pushed out of the dryer vent to the outside world can heat up any lint that has built up in that area and start a fire. Fires related to clogged dryer vents can cause damage to a person's home.
The best way to prevent fires, in this case, is to clean out the lint hose often. This is recommended to anyone who owns a dryer. There are special tools and services that can help to get this particular vent cleaned for you.
According to the experts at SERVPRO of Southwest Lubbock, they offer some of the best tips for watching out for some of the obvious warning signs that your dryer is clogged and may result in fire at some point in the near future:
1. If it takes longer than about 45 minutes to dry your clothing, it could be a sign that the dryer vent is clogged.
2. Your clothes are roasting hot to the touch after they have gone through a dry cycle.
3. The flapper on the dryer's vent may not open entirely when the appliance is actually on.
Preventing a Fire with Your Dryer
1. You should clean the vent of your dryer at least twice each year.
2. Make sure to clean out the lint trap inside of the dryer thoroughly before each cycle.
3. For those individuals who are noticing any of the above-mentioned warning signs, make sure to contact a professional company to have the appliance repaired and cleaned.
For those homeowners who were not so lucky as to catch the warning signs in time, fire damage can be a daunting thing to clean up on your own. This is where the professionals of SERVPRO of Southwest Lubbock come in handy, and they can work diligently on your home's fire restoration when it is most convenient for you. Make sure to contact SERVPRO of Southwest Lubbock at the first sign of fire damage so that the issue can be addressed immediately.
Smoke & Soot Clean Up
SERVPRO® of Southwest Lubbock is specialized in fire damage and soot clean up. Like every natural disaster, fires are unpredictable and vary from house to house. However, the damage restoration process is consistent.
When various materials burn, the soot they create differs greatly and requires a specific cleaning procedure. The steps listed below illustrate our process for the “typical” fire damage restoration.
- Emergency Contact
- Inspection and Fire Damage Assessment
- Immediate Board-Up and Roof Tarp Service (if needed)
- Water Removal and Drying (if water damage is present)
- Removal of Smoke and Soot from All Surfaces
- Cleaning and Repair
At SERVPRO® of Southwest Lubbock, we care about the local community and as a customer, you deserve the best! When fires occur, they bring smoke and soot damage. Depending on the amount of soot, SERVPRO® of Southwest Lubbock may be able to reduce the cost of recovery by cleaning lighter soot deposits found on some surfaces, eliminating the expense incurred with repainting or refinishing.
Have Questions About Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage? Call Today – (806) 780-6311 and we’ll make it “Like it never even happened."
Steps To Take After A House Fire
Nervous, worried, scared, upset, wondering what to do next, and just how to do it. First things first…take a deep breath, try to relax, and know that everything will be more than fine. Ultimately you need to make sure that your family is safe and sound. Once you can confirm that, then you can tackle the recovery process of your home and belongings.
We’ve compiled a list of five things that you should do and be aware of after a fire. This way, you can approach the rebuilding of your home in a cool, calm, and collected manner!
(1) Review with the authorities and the professionals as to when it is safe to enter the home after the fire. The fire department will make sure that the fire is completely extinguished and then will go through their precautionary measures in order to deem the area ‘safe’.
(2) Know who to contact. First, contact any family members to let them know of the occurrence and the fact that you are safe. Review, and then contact your insurance company. A clean-up team, such as SERVPRO of Southwest Lubbock should also be one of the first calls made. We can efficiently and professionally get you back into your home – it will be as if nothing happened!
(3) Get the fire report. Typically coming to you from the fire department, this correspondence will review the facts of the fire – the home structure, the area of the fire, as well as the time and date. In some cities and towns, you may need to call the fire department directly in order to get a copy of this report.
(4) Make sure to secure your property. If you are not securing the property, you could potentially be making a bad situation into a terrible one – your home could be robbed of its remaining property, or, in some cases, another individual could be injured on the property (becoming your responsibility). You can ask the authorities and emergency services on the best methods in securing what is yours.
(5) Begin the clean-up process. Interior and exterior clean-up will most certainly be required, and more often than not there is damage that you cannot locate with the naked eye. That said, you should definitely hire a professional service like SERVPRO of Southwest Lubbock to do a thorough cleaning of all areas and of all soot, smoke, and odor.
Fire Damage Mitigation in West Texas
SERVPRO Uses Deodorization Methods to Rid Your Home or Business of Foul Odors
Sometimes after a fire ignites inside your West Texas home or business, there are more problems that get created than just burnt materials and contents. Smoke created by a blaze often travels to many areas inside. Smoke leaves behind soot residues and pungent, burnt odors.
After any severely burnt materials and contents get replaced, all of the soot residues inside the building get cleaned. SERVPRO’s fire damage technicians use specialized chemicals when cleaning that help eliminate foul odors. If unpleasant aromas still exist, then a final deodorization stage takes place.
When deodorizing an area, specific chemicals get used for different situations. Various odors exist based on what materials get burned during the blaze. Some deodorization techniques use chemicals that bond and react with the foul odor particles and neutralize them. Other deodorants mask unpleasant smells with more appealing odors.
To start, we apply deodorants to the air and affected surfaces. Many times deodorization gets accomplished by using hand pumps or electric powered sprayers. In more extreme cases, advanced equipment gets used during the deodorization process.
If our SERVPRO restoration experts believe that spraying chemicals does not complete the job efficiently, then other equipment gets used to create the original environment that caused the burnt odors to exist in the first place. During a fire, combustion causes smoke particles to become microscopic and penetrate many different materials. We use specialized equipment to break down chemicals so that they penetrate materials in the same way that foul odor particles did.
One way to mimic smoke behavior is with a Vaportek system. A Vaportek deodorization system consists of a compound of natural oils sealed by a membrane. The compounds then volatilize into the air and pass through the plastic membrane. Then, air currents distribute the chemicals into the air which react with and neutralize odor molecules upon contact.
Other ways to dispense deodorants into the building in the same way smoke entered, is to use fogging methods. When using a fogging system, deodorizing products get dispensed as finely divided particles in a mist. Depending on the situation we use either a wet fogging or dry fogging system to disperse deodorants into the air.
After an advanced deodorization system gets used inside your home or business, we often use powerful box fans to ventilate the area, so that dense chemicals do not exist in the air. For professional assistance with smoke deodorization call SERVPRO of Southwest Lubbock any time of the day or night.
Commercial Fire Damage Restoration in West Texas
If you have a commercial building that has been damaged by fire, it can be hard to know what to do once the fire has been put out. Not only will the premises be damaged by the fire, but the property may also have suffered water damage from the firefighting team and or sprinkler systems efforts to stop the fire. Other damage to your property may include:
- Discoloration of surfaces
- Corrosion (particularly of porous material)
- Soot damage
- Smoke damage
- Structural weakness or damage
Can I clean the property myself?
First, if you must enter the premises, ensure that you know it is safe to enter but do not be tempted to try and start cleaning the property yourself. Not only could this be hazardous to you, without specialized equipment and materials you could end up causing more damage which can add to the restoration costs further down the line. If at all possible try to limit the amount of movement within the premises to ensure the minimum amount of soot and ash being entrenched in soft furnishings and carpets which may render them unsalvageable.
The best thing to do is to call our specially trained team who will ask you a few questions to ascertain the extent of your damage and find the best solution to restore your fire-damaged premises. We will then send our expert team of fire damage restorers out to inspect the fire damage and carry out an in-depth assessment. From this, we will decide the best plan of action to restore your premises.
What do Commercial Fire Damage Restoration companies do?
Whether your business is in Lubbock or West Texas, fire damage is devastating and can cause extensive damage to windows, walls, and roofs. This means that it is imperative that your property is properly protected from the elements while the work is taking place. SERVPRO will make sure that all openings to the outside are boarded and covered up as well as covering any holes in the roof of your premises.
If your premises is also water damaged, the SERVPRO of Southwest Lubbock will use their specialized equipment to remove all water and moisture from your property using a combination of pumps and dehumidifying units to rid the premises of water before secondary water damage causes further issues.
Once we are sure that there is an acceptable moisture level in the property. SERVPRO of Southwest Lubbock will get to work removing the damage to the surfaces of the property removing all soot and smoke damage. Once this is completed, we can then clean and sanitize all recoverable items to pre-fire damaged conditions where possible using both wet and dry-cleaning methods and give advice where an item is beyond repair. During this process SERVPRO of Southwest Lubbock will use industrial air scrubbers and fogging equipment to remove any lingering odors caused by the fire. If we can save and restore an item, we will, which will save you paying for costly replacements.
Finally, we will start the full restoration process of your commercial premises involving minor repair, which can include replacing damaged drywall, painting and replacing carpet or flooring and also major repair works such as repairing damaged walls and roofs.
As the holiday season quickly approaches and temperatures continue to drop, many families are doing just about anything to stay warm – piling on the blankets, busting out the cozy Christmas onesies, and plugging in the old trusty space heater.
However, staying warm should not sacrifice safety. While space heaters are a great thing to have during the colder months, they still need to be used responsibly. Heating equipment fires are the second leading cause of residential fires in the U.S., according to the NFPA (National Fire Protection Association). Heating equipment fires usually happen at night and can spread throughout an entire house within minutes. In order to prevent any space heater-related accidents, here are four easy ways to use a space heater safely this holiday season.
- NEVER LEAVE A SPACE HEATER UNNATENDED – most house fires happen during the night when people are asleep and spread so fast it could be too late by the time someone wakes up. Fires can be prevented if heating equipment is always supervised. Always keep an eye on heaters when using them, and ALWAYS remember to unplug heaters when leaving the room.
- Keep space heaters AT LEAST THREE FEET away from all flammable materials – most fires start because a space heater was left unattended next to a blanket, curtain or laundry basket. Leaving flammable materials like cloth curtains and clothes close to a space heater only heightens the risk of an incident. It’s best to leave the space heater sitting in the middle of the room to avoid any incidents.
- Plug space heaters directly into a wall outlet, NOT an extension cord or surge protector – plugging heaters into anything except a wall outlet only increases the chance for overheating. Minimize these chances by avoiding extension cords and surge protectors if possible.
- If possible, purchase spaces heaters with an automatic shut-off switch – an automatic shut-off switch can prevent a house fire in case a space heater overheats. However, this only lowers the risk of house fires and should still be monitored.
Space heaters can be a life saver when used correctly. But without proper supervision and care, it can lead to more problems than cold feet during the holidays. If fire damage does occur, always remember to contact SERVPRO® of Southwest Lubbock at 806-780-6311 to make it "Like it never even happened."
Candles—Do’s & Dont’s
Who doesn’t love a lighting nice peppermint scented candle to help ring in the season? The wide variety of sweet and exotic scents and styles can really help bring a room together… or, if people aren’t careful, burn it down. Candles may seem like a harmless thing to have, but they can cause just as much damage as an unattended space heater. December is the peak time of year for home candle fires, according to the NFPA (National Fire Protection Association), and an article released earlier this year by ABC News shows candle fires are indeed on the rise. In order to keep that pretty little candle from turning into a pretty little disaster, here are three surefire (no pun intended) ways to keep a house smelling like a brisk winter evening instead of a smokey, charred throw pillow.
- NEVER leave a candle unattended – most candle fires happen because a candle was left unsupervised. While it might be nice to leave a candle going while going to sleep or stepping out for a quick errand, it raises the risk of something going terribly wrong. Always remember to blow out candles before leaving a room or falling asleep.
- Keep candles away from small children and pets – accidents happen. Children and pets are constantly knocking into things, and if a candle is put in the wrong place it can easily turn into a disaster. To prevent any candles from possibly getting knocked over, its best to keep them out of reach.
- If a candle wick is getting low, throw it out – letting a candle burn too close to the holder can increase the risk of fires in the house. Replacing candles before the wick gets too low is an easy way to protect your house from any fire damage. If damage does occur, contact SERVPRO® of Southwest Lubbock to get the house looking like new.
Candles can really help set the mood. But without proper supervision and care, it can lead to more problems than during the holidays. If fire damage does occur, always remember to contact SERVPRO® of Southwest Lubbock at 806-780-6311 to make it "Like it never even happened."
Kitchen Fire Safety
According to the National Fire Protection Association, cooking fires are the number one cause of home fires and home injuries. The leading cause of fires in the kitchen is unattended cooking. Follow these tips to create a safer cooking environment:
- Be alert! If you are tired or have consumed alcohol don’t use the oven or stove.
- 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 food is cooking, and use a timer to remind you that you are cooking.
- Keep anything that can catch fire – oven mitts, wooden utensils, food packaging, towels or curtains – away from the stovetop.
- Keep an easily accessible fire extinguisher somewhere in your kitchen.
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 fire.
- Call 911 or the local emergency number after you leave.
- For an oven fire turn off the heat and keep the door closed.
- If you try to fight the fire, be sure others are getting out and you have a clear way out.
- Keep a lid nearby when you are cooking to smother small grease fires. Smother the fire by sliding the lid over the pan and turn off the stovetop. Leave a pan covered until it is completely cooled. Never add water to a grease fire!
If you have experienced a kitchen fire call the professionals at SERVPRO of Southwest Lubbock at 806-780-6311.
How to put out different types of cooking fires
According to the NFPA (National Fire Protection Agency) cooking fires are the number one cause of home fires and home injuries. When at home cooking in your kitchen, if a fire starts panic can start to set in and leave you scrambling on how to put it out. Here are different types of fires that can occur in your kitchen and how to put each of them out. And remember if you don’t get the fire out in time before damage occurs, call SERVPRO® of Southwest Lubbock to make it "Like it Never Even Happened."
Grease Fire- You’re heating up oil in a pot when you get a phone call. You turn your back to the stove and next thing you know your pot of oil has gone up in flames. Even though you may be tempted, you should never pour water on a grease fire. Why? Because water and oil don’t mix and therefore won’t put out the fire. The first step you should take is turning the stove off and seeing if you can smother the fire yourself. Salt and Baking soda are also good to throw on the fire. Make sure to call your emergency number if the fire can’t be contained, and if any damage is done to your kitchen call SERVPRO.
Oven Fire- If something in your oven catches fire the best thing to do is turn off the oven and leave the door closed. This will cut off any oxygen and will allow the flame to die. If the fire does not go out, then contact your emergency number and vacate the premises.
Electrical Fire- Never use water on an electrical fire. If you have a fire extinguisher use that, and even if the fire is put out still make sure to call the fire department any time there is an electrical fire.
Remember after a kitchen fire if there is ever extensive damage be sure to call SERVPRO® of Southwest Lubbock at 806-780-6311 and we can make sure your home is back to normal in no time.
Smoke and Soot Cleanup in Lubbock, TX
Smoke and Soot Damage Can Cause a Pervasive Odor in Your Lubbock Home
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 Southwest Lubbock 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 – (806) 780-6311
Christmas Tree Safety
‘Tis the season many of us have been waiting for all year long; Christmas! It’s the time to celebrate joy with family and friends. Many begin to decorate their homes with beautiful lights and other Christmas décor, including the must-have Christmas tree. In the United States, Christmas trees start approximately 210 house fires per year. We have listed some safety tips to prevent any fires from sparking in your house.
- Look for a fresh tree with green needles. Dry trees are more likely to catch fire than fresh ones.
- Always keep your tree away from fireplaces, radiators, candles, heat vents or lights. Nearly a quarter of fires occur because a heat source was located too close to the tree.
- Keep the tree base filled with water to avoid a dry out.
- Never use lit candles to decorate the tree.
- Use low energy, safe lighting that’s been certified by a safety testing lab. Don’t use damaged or frayed cords.
- Make sure the light you use outside, is suitable for outdoors. Decorative lights with live voltage were involved in more than 20 percent of the fire instances.
- Don’t forget to turn your Christmas tree lights off each night. This not only saves energy but also prevents fires from starting at night.
- If you are using an artificial tree, make sure it is flame resistant and have a seal for an approved safety testing laboratory if the tree contains a built-in lighting set.
- Make sure the tree is not blocking an exit.
- Always keep a fire extinguisher nearby. Make sure everyone knows its location and how to use it.
Between 2006 and 2010, about 230 home fires per year were responded to by U.S. fire departments, killing an average of four people each year and injuring many more. If you have any inconvenience with your tree of other Christmas décor, don’t hesitate to contact us. Here at SERVPRO® of Southwest Lubbock, we focus on dealing with all the troubles so that you can enjoy your holidays. We wish you a safe and fire-free Christmas!
Turkey Frying Safety
Thinking about all the delicious food for Thanksgiving dinner makes our mouth’s water. Cooking this special meal is a meaningful time for many families. It’s a moment to celebrate with the ones you love and enjoy the smell of the food ready to be set on the table. But many things can go wrong without the right precautions. Here at SERVPRO® we care about the well-being of you and your loved ones. This blog lists some important information to prevent any dangerous burns or fires when cooking the main dish; the turkey.
- Keep your turkey in the freezer.
Put it in a place where you can monitor the temperature. When thawing the turkey, wrong temperature can cause bacteria to grow rapidly.
- Use a food thermometer to ensure that the stuffing temperature reaches 165 °F.
- Don’t use glass pans to cook your turkey because it could shatter.
In the case you do use a glass pan and it breaks, turn off the oven immediately. Wait for the oven to cool off and use gloves to pick up the broken glass.
- To avoid any glass from breaking, use an aluminum or steel pan to cook the turkey.
- Juicy turkeys.
Many times, while the turkey is cooking, juice tends to drip put of the pan and cause fire sparks. To avoid this from happening, make sure to have two to three cooking syringes nearby. Check the turkey constantly and absorb the juice with the syringes.
- Always use cooking mitts to avoid burning your hands.
- Children in the house.
Make sure to place knives and hot pans somewhere they can’t reach it.
- Taking the turkey out of the oven.
Wait a few minutes for the oven to cool off. Ask someone for help when carrying the turkey out of the oven to avoid getting burned or dropping the turkey.
SERVPRO® wishes you a safe and enjoyable Thanksgiving around the people you love. Remember, in the case something goes wrong, don’t hesitate to give us a call and we will help you deal with situations from fires to mold, to floods and much more! Our goal is to help minimize the interruption to your life and quickly make it "Like it never even happened." With a nationwide system of qualified franchises, no damage is too large or too small for SERVPRO® of Southwest Lubbock.
Space Heaters: A Quick Guide
After coming back from a cold and windy day, the only thing you want is to feel warm again. You turn on your space heater and stay there till you feel your body get warm and cozy, but it is important to know that all space heaters should be monitored regularly because it can be dangerous, if left unsupervised.
Here is some useful information to keep yourself and others warm and safe around a heater.
Some of the main risks of space heaters are fires, burns, and carbon monoxide poisoning. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission estimates that more than 25,000 house fires every year are associated with space heaters. Data also shows that at least 6,000 people have suffered extreme burn injuries associated with heaters as well.
- Space heaters should be plugged directly in to the wall because using the wrong extension cord could spark a fire. Also, make sure to check these plugs often for cracks or damages to avoid any risks.
- Make sure to place your space heater away from flammable objects such as curtains, furniture, plastic materials, paper, gas or paint.
- Don’t let pets or children near the space heater.
- Never leave the heater on, always turn it off when you’re leaving a room or going to sleep.
- Wear mittens or winter gloves if you will be warming your hands near the heater. Once the heater is on full power don’t touch it because you could get burned.
- Place space heaters on flat surfaces. Never place them on cabinets, tables, furniture, or carpet, which can overheat and start a fire.
- Make sure your space heater has the label showing that it is listed by a recognized testing laboratory.
- Space heaters should never be used to warm bedding, cook food, dry clothing or thaw pipes.
It’s important to remember these tips – and that you can count on SERVPRO® of Southwest Lubbock 24/7 if you need us.
Fire Safety for Pets
Home fires are the most common disaster that the American Red Cross responds to, according to their website – and also, they are the most preventable. According to the United States Fire Administration, an estimated 500,000 pets are affected annually by fires.
It’s important to keep in mind that if you need a plan for your family in case of disaster, you should also have a plan for your pets.
Did you know?
- The National Fire Protection Association estimates that nearly 1,000 home fires each year are accidentally started by the homeowners’ pets.
The best way to protect your pets is to include them in your family escape plan, in case of disaster. Train your pets to go to you when you call their name that way in the event of a fire evacuation, you can leave with them easily and safely.
The American Kennel Club and ADT Security Services have provided the following tips:
- Be sure your pet is not left unattended by open flames, such as cooking appliances, candles, or fire place. Be sure to extinguish any flame before leaving your home.
- Remove stove knobs or protect them with covers before leaving the house. A stove is the number one appliance involved in your pet starting a fire.
- Invest in flameless candles – these candles contain a light bulb rather than an open flame, and take the danger out of your pet knocking over a candle (something cats are notorious for).
- Secure your pets while you’re away – keep them confined in secure areas that don’t present a potential fire hazard.
Some other tips? Keep pets near entrances when you’re away from your home and keep their collars on. Have leashes nearby and ready in case firefighters need to rescue your pet. You can also affix a pet alert window cling and write down the number of pets inside your house and attach the cling to a front window. This information saves rescuers time when locating your pets.
Pets become a part of our families, and we need to remember that we need to have plans in place for them too when it comes to safely evacuating a home in case of a fire. And remember, if you are victim of a house fire, SERVPRO® of Southwest Lubbock can help #LikeItNeverEvenHappened.
This time of year – everyone loves candles. The autumn scents then transitioning into Christmas aromas make your house feel like it’s changing along with the seasons. However, it’s important to remember some safety tips anytime there’s an open flame in your home or business.
Here are some important tips from candles.org to keep in mind when you light your candles:
- Burn the candle in sight – extinguish candles when leaving the room and before going to sleep. Check to ensure the wick is no longer glowing.
- Never burn a candle near anything that can catch fire – keep burning candles away from furniture, drapes, bedding, carpet, paper, flammable décor, etc.
- Keep candles away from children and pets – it’s easy for them to get burned when they don’t realize how dangerous flames can be.
- Trim candlewicks to ensure even burning – long and crooked wicks can cause uneven burning and dripping.
- Place candle on stable, heat-resistant surface – this helps prevent heat damage to underlying surfaces and prevents glass containers from breaking!
- Keep candles away from drafts, vents, fans, and other air currents – this will help avoid flame flare-ups!
- Don’t burn a candle all the way down – discontinue burning a candle when 2 inches of wax remains or ½ an inch if in a container.
- Never touch or move a burning candle or candle container when wax is liquid – once it’s burning, keep it still!
- Never extinguish candles with water – water can cause hot wax to splatter and can potentially break the glass container.
- Extinguish a candle if it repeatedly smokes, flickers, or flame becomes too high – this means the candle isn’t burning properly. Trim the wick and check for drafts before relighting.
We love candles, but it’s important to practice safe habits when lighting them in your home or office. In the event that burning a candle becomes disastrous, remember that you can call SERVPRO® of Southwest Lubbock to make it “Like it never even happened.”
Fire Damage: What to Do
Fire and smoke damage can be devastating, and most people don’t know what their options are when disaster strikes. We want to arm you with knowledge so if you ever are the victim of a fire, you’ll know what to do, and what not to do, until help arrives.
- Limit movement in the home to prevent soot particles from being embedded into upholstery and carpet.
- Keep your hands clean! Soot on your hands can further soil your items, walls, and woodwork.
- Place dry, colorfast towels or old linens on rugs, upholstery and carpet traffic areas.
- If your electricity is off, empty freezer and refrigerator completely and prop doors open to help prevent odor.
- Wipe soot from chrome on kitchen and bathroom faucets, trim and appliances, then protect these surfaces with a light coating of lubricant.
- If heat is off in the winter, pour RV antifreeze in sinks, toilets bowls, holding tanks and tubs to avoid freezing pipes and fixtures.
- Change HVAC filter, but leave system off until a trained professional can check the system.
- Tape double layers of cheesecloth over air registers to stop particles of soot from getting in or out of HVAC systems.
- Ask your insurance adjuster about us. We’re faster to any size disaster!
- Attempt to wash any walls or painted surfaces.
- Attempt to shampoo carpet or upholstered furniture without first consulting us.
- Attempt to clean any electrical appliances (TVs, radios, etc.) that may have been close to fire, heat or water without first consulting an authorized repair service.
- Consume any food or beverages that may have been stored close to fire, heat, or water because they might have been contaminated.
- Turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet. Wiring may be wet or damaged and cause electrical shock, and air movement may create secondary damage.
- Send garments to the dry cleaner. Improper cleaning may set in smoke odor.
These emergency tips will assist you in taking the proper action until our SERVPRO® of Southwest Lubbock Professionals can arrive. Please follow these dos and don’ts to help reduce damage and increase the changes of a successful restoration “Like it never even happened.”
Fireworks: Keep Your Home and Family Safe
Fourth of July is right around the corner, and while we look forward to the time spent celebrating America through parades and fireworks, it’s important to remember that setting off fireworks and playing with other goodies purchased from road-side firework stands comes with great responsibility. Whether you’re celebrating the Fourth of July, or enjoying a barbecue with friends, it’s always important to follow through with safe fireworks practices to protect you or your loved ones from the hazards fireworks could potentially have.
There are several safety measures to take when getting ready to pop fireworks: ranging from reading the directions on their packaging carefully, to being aware of the climate and your local laws referencing the use of fireworks. Here are 10 safety tips from the National Council on Fireworks Safety to help keep you and your family safe this summer:
- Obey all local laws regarding the use of fireworks.
- Know your fireworks; read the cautionary labels and performance descriptions before igniting and have a bucket of water on hand for spent fireworks.
- 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.
- Do not hold a firework item in your hand.
- Use fireworks outdoors in a clear area; away from buildings and vehicles.
- Ensure all pets and animals are away from firework noise.
- With the rise in stress-related disorders affecting American service men and women, pay special consideration to individuals who may be sensitive to loud noises in proximity to your fireworks show.
- Never relight a “dud” firework. Wait 20 minutes and then soak it in a bucket of water before you discard it.
- Dispose of spent fireworks by wetting them down and place in a metal trashcan away from any building or combustible materials until the next day. Have a bucket of sand available to put on grass fires or a fire extinguisher.
Fires can be devastating to your home or business. If in the event you are affected by fire damage this summer season, SERVPRO® of Southwest Lubbock has specialized fire damage restoration training experience to quickly restore your home to pre-fire condition. Until we can arrive to help, please see our tips on what you can do until help arrives.
You know you can count on SERVPRO® of Southwest Lubbock if disaster strikes. Stay safe this Fourth of July!
Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
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