Recent Fire Damage Posts

Protect Your Pets From A Fire

3/12/2021 (Permalink)

Help to save your pets and consider these tips when leaving your home

Keep pets close to the entrances while you're away from home.

Keep your pet collars and leashes ready in case your pet needs to be saved by firefighters

When you leave your pets home alone, keep them in areas or rooms near the exits where the firefighters can quickly spot them.

Save rescuers time by attaching the pet warning window to the cling and write down the number of pets inside your house and connect the static cling to the front door.

Prevent Your Pets from Starting Fires

The National Fire Protection Association estimates that almost 1,000 home fires are accidentally caused every year by pet owners. The American Kennel Club and ADT Security Services have joined forces to provide the following tips:

  • Extinguish Open Flames
    Pets are typically curious about cooking appliances, candles, or even a fire in your fireplace. Ensure that your pet is not left unattended by an open flame and ensure that any open flame is absolutely extinguished before you leave your home.
  • Remove the stove knobs
    Be sure to remove the stove knobs or protect them with the covers before you leave the house-the stove or stove is the number one piece of equipment where your pet can start a fire.
  • Invest in Flameless Candles
    These candles have a light bulb rather than an open flame, and they take the danger of your pet knocking on a candle. Cats are famous for starting fire when their tails turn on lit candles.
  • Protected Young Pets
    Keep them protected from potential fire hazards when you're away from home, such as in cages or behind child gates in secure areas.

Our Fire Damage Restoration Services

Because each situation of smoke and fire damage is slightly different, each needs a unique solution tailored to particular circumstances. We have the tools, skills, and experience to repair fire and smoke damage. We will treat your family with love and respect, as well as your property with care.

Do you have questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage? Call us at 301-537-7400

Fire Damage Prevention- What Some Experts Fail Warn You!

2/24/2021 (Permalink)

As a family-owned franchise, we understand the significance of keeping our family and loved ones safe. According to the NFPA,  "In a five-year period, house fires caused 2,620 civilian deaths and $6.9 billion in property damage".  Most fire casualties occur in the kitchen. Here at SERVPRO, we honor our commitment to being a resource to Montgomery County. We want to make sure that our community is taking preventive measures to avoid home fire casualties.  Follow the tips below to avoid common kitchen accidents.

Recipe For Kitchen Safety:

  • Stay in the kitchen when you are cooking on the stovetop so you can keep an eye on the food.
  • Stay in the home when cooking food and check on it often. 
  • Keep children away from the kitchen while you're cooking.
  • Clean cooking surfaces to prevent food and grease build-up.
  • Keep curtains, towels, and pot holders away from hot surfaces.
  • Store solvents and flammable cleaners away from heat sources. 
  • Never keep gasoline in the house.
  • Turn pan handles inward to prevent food spills.
  • Be sure electric cords from your appliances are not dangling off the counters. 



Smoke Detector tools

  • Replace your smoke detector every 6 Months
  • Clean off any dust on the unit as it may interfere with the sensor
  • Make sure your smoke detectors are working.
  • Discuss with family members a fire escape plan
  • In the event of a fire or smoke damage, please call SERVPRO to help get your home or property back to normal.

Fire & Smoke Damage: Do's And Don't

2/10/2021 (Permalink)

Fire & Smoke Damage

DO

  • Limit movement in the home to prevent soot particles from being embedded into upholstery and carpet.
  • Keep your hands clean. Soot on hands can further soil upholstery, walls, and woodwork.
  • Place dry, colorfast towels or old linens on rugs, upholstery, and carpet traffic areas.
  • If 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 during winter, pour RV antifreeze in sinks, toilet bowls, holding tanks, and tubs to avoid freezing pipes and fixtures.
  • Wash both sides of leaves on house plants.
  • Change the HVAC filter, but leave the 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 of the HVAC system

DON'T:

  • Attempt to wash any walls or painted surfaces without first contacting your SERVPRO Franchise Professional.
  • Attempt to shampoo carpet or upholstered furniture without first consulting your SERVPRO Franchise Professional.
  • Attempt to clean any electrical appliances (TV sets, 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. (They may be contaminated.)
  • Turn on ceiling fixtures if the ceiling is wet. The wiring may be wet or damaged and cause electric shock, and air movement may create secondary damage.
  • Send garments to the dry cleaner. Improper cleaning may set in smoke odor.

Comfort Food Season! | Tips On Practice Fire Safety in the Kitchen

1/22/2021 (Permalink)

Practice Fire Safety in the Kitchen

As the weather gets cooler and we get into Fall and Winter, many are ready to do some comfort food cooking. Whether you're a pro or new to the kitchen, it's important to remember fire safety. Emergencies can happen to anyone. Below are some steps to ensure safety while cooking this season. 

What you should know about home cooking safety

  • Be on alert! If you are sleepy or have consumed alcohol, don’t use the stove or stovetop.
  • 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 your stovetop.

If you have a cooking fire

  • Just get out! When you leave, close the door behind you to help contain the fire.
  • Call 9-1-1 or the local emergency number after you leave.
  • 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’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.
  • For an oven fire, turn off the heat and keep the door closed.

Kitchen Fires: Four Risk Factors

1/13/2021 (Permalink)

illustrated image of a stove with text STOVE Make sure the stove is clean before cooking to reduce the risk of grease fire Make sure you clear anything flammable from heat ex. dish towels,

Kitchen Fires: Four Risk Factors

While every home should have a smoke detector in the kitchen, there are several other tips for keeping your home and yourself safe when cooking. From rolling up your sleeves and tying back your hair to keeping flammable materials, like paper towels and dish towels, away from the stove, cooking safety is essential when it comes to fire prevention. However, many homeowners can be complacent about the following four risk factors. 

1. Appliances 

fire damage is devastating, but the fact that so many fires are caused by faulty or mishandled appliances is shocking. Appliances, if not maintained, are a leading cause of home fires. Be sure to service all your appliances properly. Additionally, unplug small countertop appliances as they draw electricity even when not in use, which can lead to overheating.

2. Too Much Oil or Grease

One of the most overlooked cooking tips is to use less oil and grease. In cooking, a little goes a long way when it comes to these two substances. Using too much of either can lead to grease fires which, if left unattended, can get out of hand quickly. It is important to remember not to throw water on a grease fire because it will only splash the pan and cause the fire to spread, instead use salt or baking soda. For other possible ways to extinguish a grease or oil fire, call a fire remediation specialist in the Bethesda/Potomac area.

3. Spills

Another common cause of many kitchen fires is a dirty stove or oven. Always wipe up spills immediately and clean cooktops after use. Leftover grease, oil, or food can ignite on the burner, causing a fire. This is another reason why it is essential to keep an eye on food as it cooks because these types of fires require a quick response, or they can spread quickly. 

Unfortunately, while the kitchen is the heart of the home, it is also the most likely place for fires to begin. The above tips offer several suggestions for helping you maintain a safe and fire-free home.

  

Residential Fires | Smoke and Soot Facts You Need To Know

1/8/2021 (Permalink)

Smoke and soot are very invasive and can penetrate various cavities within your home, causing hidden damage and odor. Our smoke damage expertise and experience allow 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 Bethesda / Potomac and SERVPRO of Chevy Chase / Silver Spring 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.

Fire Safety

3/30/2020 (Permalink)

Clothes dryer fires happen more often than one might think, accounting for 16,800 home structure fires in 2010 and doing more than $236 million in property damage according to the National Fire Protection Association. The most frequent causes of fires in dryers are lint/dust (29%) and clothing (28%). In washers, they are wire or cable insulation (26%), the appliance housing (21%) or the drive belt (15%).

Dryers were involved in 92% of the Washer/Dryer fires; the risk of fire was basically the same for both gas and electric-powered dryers.

Safety tips:

  • Clean the lint screen frequently and don’t run the dryer without it.
  • For gas and propane dryers, make sure there aren’t any leaks in the lines.
  • Vent the dryer to the outside of the house and ensure nothing blocks the vent pipe.
  • Clean the vent pipe and the area where the screen is housed.
  • Keep the area around the dryer free of combustible materials.

Puffback Prevention

3/17/2020 (Permalink)

For those who live in colder parts of the United States, there are home appliances that play a critical role when it comes to your furnace. A quality furnace can ensure optimal comfort inside your home while minimizing the amount of energy you consume at home. Even a top-quality furnace will not provide consistent results if you do not maintain it properly.

Those who neglect regular furnace servicing may find themselves dealing with a wide variety of issues, including a common problem such as a puffback. Here are some key points to know about your furnace at home and how it could produce a puffback when it is least expected:

  1. What is a Puffback?

Puffbacks are explosions of soot and smoke caused by improper furnace ignition. They typically occur when excessive amounts of fuel vapors accumulate inside of your furnace’s burner chamber. When the furnace ignites, these vapors explode. Fortunately, this explosion does not have the force to put you and your family at risk. However, over time, a puffback can make a serious impact on your HVAC system.

When an oil burner does not ignite immediately, excess oil builds up within the combustion chamber. The fuel could then ignite explosively, like the backfiring of a car. Depending on how much fuel has built up in the chamber, the result can range from a small explosion to a cloud of oily smoke.  

This disaster poses the greatest threat due to the excessive amounts of soot and smoke they produce. Over time, soot builds up on the inner surfaces of your furnace and heat exchanger, often leading to problems such as corrosion and clogged burner nozzles. The worst aspect of a puffback is that both soot and smoke will find their way and impact your home’s air quality.  

  1. Oil and Gas Furnaces Can Have Puffbacks

Puffbacks can occur in both natural gas and oil-burning furnaces. All furnaces have the capability of accumulating fuel vapors in the combustion chamber if it is not properly maintained. With that said, a puffback poses a more common problem for oil furnaces.

Fun fact, oil furnaces have greater maintenance needs. A neglected oil furnace will accumulate issues that lead to a puffback at a faster rate. Furthermore, oil furnaces tend to experience more severe puffbacks. Heating oil dissipates at a lower rate than natural gas. This will ultimately allow it to accumulate in greater quantities.

  1. Issues Leading Up to a Puffback

A puffback may stem from a variety of furnace problems, many of which relate back to a lack of maintenance. The most direct mechanism of puffback involves leaks in or around the furnace’s combustion chamber. These leaks allow fuel to trickle into the combustion chamber even when the furnace is not running. As soon as the burner turns on, fuel will ignite.

A puffback can also be due to the exhaust flue or chimney. If exhaust gases cannot vacate the system quickly enough, they will remain inside of the furnace. This specific scenario alters the delicate pressure balance needed for proper combustion, changing the air-fuel ratio and leading to a puffback. Such pressure problems may cause additional damages to the heat exchanger.

Puffbacks frequently happen as the result of clogged burners. When fuel cannot enter a furnace efficiently, misfires allow for fuel (that was not burned) to accumulate inside the combustion chamber. Finally, puffbacks may stem from excessive dirt ignition electrodes. A dirty electrode may fail to generate the spark needed for combustion, instead of allowing fuel to puddle inside of the furnace.

As a result, the mess of soot and debris will be mixed with oil. It can quickly spread throughout your home, covering cabinets, walls, furniture, and everything else you would never want covered in black, sticky grime. In addition to the mess, puffbacks contaminate the air and surfaces with unhealthy material. The consequences can be unpleasant, but SERVPRO of Bethesda / Potomac can work with you in the cleaning and restoration process of your home and belongings.

Should a puffback occur, here are some helpful tips to follow:

  • Assess the damage
  • Wash all affected clothing and throw out exposed food
  • Contact a technician to repair the malfunctioning furnace
  • Contact SERVPRO of Bethesda / Potomac

SERVPRO of Bethesda / Potomac is a trusted leader in the restoration industry. We have the specific damage restoration training, personnel, and equipment to quickly restore your home to its original state. If you need someone to help with any type of smoke, soot, or fire damage, our high trained technicians will by there to start the restoration process. For more information about what it takes to manage a puffback and prevention steps towards avoiding an expected disaster, please reach out to us at SERVPRO of Bethesda / Potomac at 301-530-7400.

Smoke & Soot Cleanup

3/2/2020 (Permalink)

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

Smoke and Soot facts:

  • 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 floor to floor.
  • The type of smoke may significantly affect the restoration process.

Different Types of Smoke

There are two different types of smoke—wet and dry; therefore, different types of soot and residue exist after a fire takes place. Before restoration begins, SERVPRO will test the soot to determine which type of smoke damage is present. The cleaning procedures will then be based on the information identified during pretesting.

Here are more details about the various types of smoke and fire residue:

  1. Wet Smoke – Plastic and Rubber

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

  1. Dry Smoke – Paper and Wood

Signs: Fast burning, high temperatures, heat rise – therefore smoke rises.

  1. Protein Fire Residue – produced by evaporation of material rather than from a fire

Signs: Virtually invisible, discolors paints and varnishes, extreme pungent odor.

Our Fire Damage Restoration Services

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

SERVPRO Fire Damage Restoration: Start to Finish

2/27/2020 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Bethesda and Potomac can handle any size fire loss from the initial phases of clean up to the final stages of restoring one’s property. We have an in-house construction team that completes the highest quality of work for SERVPRO Bethesda and Potomac in Maryland.  

After a fire, it is vital to clean your property as soon as possible. If there is any standing water, it will need to be extracted for the building’s structure to completely dry.   

After the removal of water, SERVPRO can begin the cleaning process. In most cases, air purification will need to be completed using air scrubbers. Additionally, SERVPRO has the necessary professional cleaning products to prepare the property for any remaining repairs.  

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out at any time!

Is Smoke Damage Covered By Insurance?

2/26/2020 (Permalink)

Are you dealing with smoke-related damage to your building? If your commercial building or the one adjacent to yours recently sustained a fire, you are most likely dealing with the aftermath of the event. You may be worried about making a claim with your insurance company. Is smoke damage a covered loss? Read on to learn everything you need to know about smoke claims that will help put your mind at ease.

Soot Damage and Insurance

Most of the time, smoke damage will be covered by your commercial insurance policy. This is often even the case if the fire occurred at an office right next to yours. However, there are some steps you should take to properly file your claim and increase your chances of being accepted:

  1. Contact your insurance company to report the smoke damage and file a claim.
  2. Assess your loss and prepare a smoke cleanup plan with the help of professionals.
  3. Record proof of any damage and repairs through pictures, receipts, and other documents.
  4. Prepare for the insurance adjuster to arrive for surveying purposes.

Following the steps above will increase the chances of restoring your property entirely. Having a solid plan in place will also make it more likely that your insurance company will approve your claim.

Smoke Cleaning Assistance

Creating an action plan for cleanup is one of the most important steps to the entire claims and restoration process. A reliable fire damage restoration company, such as SERVPRO, will arrive on an emergency basis. They will assess the situation and help you build a cleanup plan that will aim to reduce odors and eliminate smoke from your building.

Smoke damage isn’t easy to deal with and communicating with your insurance provider can be even more frustrating. Following the steps above and knowing where to turn for cleanup help can make your business’s post fire experience a more positive one.

Fire Safety

1/8/2020 (Permalink)

Did you know that 3 out of 5 home fire deaths are due to non- working smoke alarms? Have you checked yours? It is as simple as looking on the back of the smoke alarm for the date of manufacture.

It is recommended that you try and change smoke alarms every 10 years if not sooner to avoid problems.

To find out more information on fire safety visit the website of Fema:

https://www.usfa.fema.gov/

SERVPRO of Bethesda / Potomac is locally owned and operated—so we’re a part of this community too. We are also part of a national network of over 1,700 Franchises, which enables us to respond quicker with more resources. For major storms and disasters, we can call upon special Disaster Recovery Teams strategically located throughout the country.

Why trusting a Restoration Professional After a fire is Very Important

1/8/2020 (Permalink)

Because of the convection pattern that flames typically form during ignition, smoky residue saturates every opening. The soot constructs up in layers that may end up being solidified and tough to eliminate which is another reason to leave the cleaning to a specialist. When the cleaning teams do arrive, they promptly different salvageable items from charred debris, taking the things creating the strongest odors out for cleaning.

After a fire, wall surface areas can be harmed by soot. Non-water based cleaners need to be used to remove soot from walls. These kinds of chemicals should be handled by a specialist due to the fumes and toxicity. Water-based cleaning items can cause spots to bleed into plaster walls which is why a trained specialist should be left to deal with these chemicals.  

A restoration effort reduces the after-effects a blaze can have on the health of those who return in. If a homeowner does not have the property restored by a professional, the results can be found later on down the line. To an untrained eye they might believe the issue has been fixed, they experience the remaining impacts of indoor air pollution for numerous months later on in the form of increased respiratory discomfort.  

Companies like SERVPRO are leading experts in fire restoration. They are trained to help remove your belongings as well as cleaning and storing them until your property has been restored to its original condition.

3 Things You Should Know About Electronics Damaged by Fire

2/22/2019 (Permalink)

3 Things You Should Know About Electronics Damaged by Fire

Recovering items that have been damaged by a fire in your home and staring the fire cleanup process can be a difficult. However, many people are unsure how to handle electronic items that have been damaged. There are several tips that can make it easier to handle and clean damaged electronics.


      1. Don’t Use Damaged                      Electronics

After a fire, you may be tempted to test out your electronics to see what is damaged and what still works. However, using electronics that have been impacted by soot and smoke damage can actually cause more damage to the items, and could potentially cause a fire. Instead of plugging in or turning on damaged electronics, try to avoid moving them in order to prevent further damage from occurring.

     2. Damage Can Be Hidden

Some electronic items may have visible marks that indicate the item has been damaged. However, electronics can often appear as if they are undamaged if the majority of the damage has occurred within the electrical components. Electronics that have been damaged by smoke are susceptible to overheating, so in the fire cleanup process, it’s often best to not use an item if you are unsure whether or not it has been damaged.

     3. Act Quickly

It is often possible for electronics to be restored, but time matters when it comes to restoring electronics. The longer an electronic item has soot in it, the more damage that is likely to occur. However, it can be hard to restore these items without the proper equipment. it’s often important to move the items carefully or have the items professionally removed to ensure that soot throughout the home isn’t disturbed.

Knowing that electronic items that are damaged shouldn’t be used, understanding that damage is not always visible and knowing to act quickly to restore your electronics can make the fire cleanup process easier. However, if you need assistance with the cleanup process, it could be useful to contact fire damage restoration professionals.

SERVPRO of Bethesda Potomac can handle a fire loss from start to finish

2/22/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO  can handle any size fire loss from start to finish. We have an in house construction team that does top quality work all over Las Vegas. 

After a fire it is important to get the home or business cleaned up as much as possible. If there is standing water, it will need to be extracted and then the structure will need to be dried. 

After all of the water is removed, SERVPRO can begin the cleaning process. In many cases there will need to be air purification through the use of air scrubbers. SERVPRO has all of the necessary professional cleaning products to get the home or business clean and ready for repairs. 

If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to us at anytime. 

Sometimes your Kitchen just needs to Vent

2/22/2019 (Permalink)

Vent On = Bad Odors and Moisture Out

We’ve all been there, it seemed like a good idea to cook the bacon on High heat but that Text from a friend or the person that distracted us from our stove was enough to make it happen.

“It” is that smell that enters your nostrils that makes your hard race as you run to the stove and turn down the heat.  As you fan smoke away from the pan you realize you’re spreading this smoke into other parts of the kitchen.  You reach for the fan and turn it on for the first time in a while.  

Cranking the knob up to high you look over at the smoke detector and the race is on.

“Will the fan suck up the smoke before it gets to the smoke detector and informs everyone in the house you’ve just burned the bacon?”

The Kitchen Fan is mostly a Reactive function in the kitchen.  It rarely gets turned on until smoke comes out of a pan or that pot of water starts to fog up the room.  

The perfect time to turn on the fan is actually Before you turn on the stove and start cooking.  The main purpose of the fan is to eliminate heat and odors from the cooking that you’re doing.  The moisture and odors tend to stick to the walls of your kitchen.

The odors and moisture builds up and can turn your kitchen area into a feeding ground for microbial growth.  

How do you reduce the chance for moisture and odor issues in your kitchen? Be proactive and turn the Fan on every time you turn the stove on.


If you ever do run into issues in your Home or Commercial building reach out to SERVPRO and we’ll come out and take care of you.

Making a fire Escape Plan for Your Home

11/7/2018 (Permalink)

You had fire drills growing up at school, (hopefully) you have the occasional fire drill at work now that you are an adult, but do you ever have fire drills at home? Coming up with and practicing family safety drills can help to make sure your family is prepared in the event of an emergency. It is an important topic to discuss with your family, especially children.

The National Fire Protection Association has a helpful section on how to create a family fire escape plan. It includes how to draw a fire escape path for your home, how to reinforce fire safety to younger children, and tips how to stay as safe as possible during a fire.

Some of the tips include:

  • Call 911 as soon as possible, even if you think you can contain the fire
  • Know at least 2 ways out of each room
  • Have a designated outside meeting place a safe distance from the home
  • Assign “partners” for young, elderly, or family members with mobility issues
  • Close Doors behind you as you leave each room to slow the spread of smoke, heat, and fire

Your family’s safety is the first priority. After emergency services have done their job SERVPRO will be here to help you repair, restore, and recover your belongings.

Are you Deep-Frying your Turkey this Thanksgiving?

10/31/2018 (Permalink)

With the popularity of turkey frying increasing every year, people are at risk for fryer-related fires and injuries. U.S. fire departments are responding to more than 1,000 deep fire related incidents each year. According to the National Fire Protection Association deep fryer fires result in more than $15 million in property damage each year. Here are some rules to follow when deep frying a turkey.

Don’t Deep Fry a Frozen Turkey Frozen turkeys are full of moisture. Make sure your turkey is completely thawed out because water and hot oil don’t mix well.

Don’t Let Oil Get Too Hot If you see your oil smoking, it is too hot. When oil gets around 400-425-degrees it can catch on fire by itself. So, when deep frying a turkey most oils should stay around 350-degrees.

Don’t Use Too Much Oil When deep-frying a turkey a common mistake people make is putting too much cooking oil in their pot. Overfilling your pot can result in the oil spilling over into the flame on the burner. If you need to figure out how much oil you need try putting your turkey in an empty pot, fill the pot with enough water to cover the turkey. Once you remove the turkey mark the water line.

Don’t Deep Fry Indoors You should never deep-fry a turkey in your house, garage or on a deck. You should always deep fry a turkey in a yard away from anything that’s flammable.

Hopefully, this Thanksgiving will go smoothly. 

Fire Damage in Commercial Building

10/29/2018 (Permalink)

A fire that started in the elevator shaft of a commercial building caused repercussions throughout different parts of the structure as well. Unless it's summer and you're sitting next to a bonfire fires are never anticipated. In almost any case, they are not what any business owner wants for themselves. As you can see in the picture we have a different point of view from the building and there is soot damage present on the flooring. This is shown by the darker color on the floor and the foot prints shown within them. SERVPRO  went in to this job and before we even put a single piece of equipment down we assured the business owner that this was nothing new to us. 

Smoke Alarms

8/27/2018 (Permalink)

Fire prevention is one of the most important things for you and your family. Ensuring that your home has smoke alarms are one of the first steps in fire prevention. According to the National Fire Protection Association, 3 out of 5 home fire deaths were caused because of no smoke alarm or no working smoking alarm. Smoke alarm cut the risk of people dying. Hardwired fire alarms operated 94% of the time versus battery powered alarms. The battery may tend to fail because of missing, disconnected or dead batteries. Ionization smoke alarm is more responsive to flaming fires and can detect a fire faster during the night hours when you are sleeping to give you extra time to safety assist or waken others to evacuate from a fire.

Steps On What To Do In Case of a Fire

6/11/2018 (Permalink)

Every fire damage event is a little different, and requires a unique solution, but the general process stays the same. The steps listed below illustrate our process for the “typical” fire damage emergency.

Step 1: Emergency Contact

Step 2: Inspection and Fire Damage Assessment

Step 3: Immediate Board-Up and Roof-Tarp Service

Step 4: Water Removal and Drying (if water damage is present)

Step 5: Removal of Smoke and Soot from All Surfaces

Step 6: Cleaning and Sanitizing

Step 7: Restoration

For more details on the proper steps to follow after a fire, check out the fire damage section on our website.

After the fire trucks leave, your home likely suffers from fire and smoke damage and extensive water damage from firefighting efforts. SERVPRO of Bethesda / Potomac have the specialized fire restoration training needed to restore your home to pre-fire condition.

Prepare Your House For Santa

11/28/2017 (Permalink)

As we start December and get excited because the holidays are upon us, we must also keep in mind the importance of safety. Here are some tips to remember during the holidays.

Never use lighted candles near trees, boughs, curtains/drapes, or with any potentially flammable item.

Stand your tree away from fireplaces, radiators and other heat sources. Make sure the tree does not block foot traffic or doorways.

If you use an artificial tree, choose one that is tested and labeled as fire resistant. Artificial trees with built-in electrical systems should have the Underwriters Laboratory (UL) label.

If using a natural tree, make sure it is well watered to avoid dry branches from catching fire from the heat of light bulbs.

Turn off all lights on trees and decorations when you go to bed or leave the house. Unplug extension cords when not in use.

When putting up holiday decorations, always use the proper step stool or ladder to reach high places. Don’t stand on chairs, desks or other furniture.

Prepare your car for the winter by checking items such as the brakes, spark plugs, battery, and tires. Check your owner’s manual for the recommended interval for a tune-up.

Refer to the link below for more safety tips.

http://www.nsc.org/NSCDocuments/Holiday-Safety-Tips.pdf

FIRE SAFETY

10/31/2017 (Permalink)

Did you know that 3 out of 5 home fire deaths are due to non- working smoke alarms? Have you checked yours? It is as simple as looking on the back of the smoke alarm for the date of manufacture.

It is recommended that you try and change smoke alarms every 10 years if not sooner to avoid problems.

To find out more information on fire safety visit the website of Fema:

https://www.usfa.fema.gov/

SERVPRO of Bethesda / Potomac is locally owned and operated—so we’re a part of this community too. We are also part of a national network of over 1,700 Franchises, which enables us to respond quicker with more resources. For major storms and disasters, we can call upon special Disaster Recovery Teams strategically located throughout the country.

Why Trusting a Restoration Professional After a Fire Is So Important

8/16/2017 (Permalink)

Because of the convection pattern that flames typically form during ignition, smoky residue saturates every opening. The soot constructs up in layers that may end up being solidified and tough to eliminate which is another reason to leave the cleaning to a specialist. When the cleaning teams do arrive, they promptly different salvageable items from charred debris, taking the things creating the strongest odors out for cleaning.

Following a fire, wall surface areas can be harmed by soot. Non-water based cleaners need to be used to remove soot from walls. These kinds of chemicals should be handled by a specialist due to the fumes and toxicity. Water-based cleaning items can cause spots to bleed into plaster walls which is why a trained specialist should be left to deal with these chemicals.  

Most importantly, a restoration effort reduces the after-effects a blaze can have on the health of those who return in. If a homeowner does not have the property restored by a professional, the results can be found later on down the line. To an untrained eye they might believe the issue has been fixed, they experience the remaining impacts of indoor air pollution for numerous months later on in the form of increased respiratory discomfort.  

Companies like SERVPRO are leading experts in fire restoration. They are trained to help remove your belongings as well as cleaning and storing them until your property has been restored to its original condition.