Recent Fire Damage Posts

How to Prevent a House Fire

3/11/2019 (Permalink)

Damage caused by a fire can be extremely devastating for your family and home. By being prepared and taking essential precautions, such as regular safety checks, you can drastically reduce your chances of suffering the losses that come with fire damage.

Smoke Alarms

Make sure to test your smoke alarms at least every 6 months and to change the batteries as needed. Don’t ignore a “chirp”—if your smoke detector is chirping, the battery should be changed immediately to ensure it functions properly in case of a fire.

Heating Sources

Make sure to inspect heating devices in your home. Whether you have a forced air furnace or use space heaters, it is important to ensure that they are functioning properly to avoid a possible fire. This means changing filters or discarding heaters with damaged wires. In addition, your risk for a fire can be reduced substantially with yearly inspections.

Cooking

Always be sure that nothing flammable is on or near your oven or stove top, such as curtains, potholders, rags, or paper towels. Also never leave burners unattended while you are cooking, as this is a leading cause of house fires. If you must leave the room, remove the pot or pan from the heating source and turn it off.

Dryer

It is important to keep the lint trap on your dryer clean, as it can be a possible fuel source for an impending fire. For the same reason, make sure to check behind the dryer for stray lint or objects that may have fallen. Also, if you have a gas dryer, it is helpful to have it inspected once a year to ensure all connections are secure.

Electrical Cords

Always be aware of where cords are plugged in and that they are being used properly—this means not overloading outlets or power strips with too many electrical devices. Also watch out for any damaged wires and repair or replace them as needed. And remember, because electrical cords can produce heat, do not cover them with anything, such as with rugs or furniture.

For more information, please contact SERVPRO Davenport/Bettendorf at 563-386-3540.

Tips To Prevent Winter Heat-Source Fires

3/7/2019 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Tips To Prevent Winter Heat-Source Fires Fireplaces should always have a screen

Whether you use a furnace, wood-stove, fireplace, or space heaters to heat your home during the winter, operating each of these devices correctly will greatly reduce your chances of a fire.

Furnaces: Periodically check and/or change your air filter to avoid flammable build-ups. Schedule annual inspections of your furnace to ensure it is functioning properly.

Fireplaces: Always use a metal or tempered-glass screen while operating your fireplace. It is also important to have your chimney and/or vents cleaned and inspected at least once a year.

Woodstoves: Never leave a woodstove door open. The only time the door should be open is when you are A) starting the fire, or B) adding wood to an existing fire.

Space Heaters/Electric Radiators: Always plug space heaters directly into a wall; this means no extension cords or surge protectors. Be sure that your space heater has an automatic shut-off in case it tips over. Always keep any flammables at least 3 feet away from heat sources.

7 things you need to know about smoke alarms

5/1/2018 (Permalink)

Smoke alarms save lives when properly installed and maintained. Below are a few tips to take into consideration when thinking of your home or businesses fire alarms.  

1. Test smoke alarms monthly.

Hold down the test button to hear the alarm sound. If faint or non-existent, it’s time to replace the batteries.

2. Know when to replace the batteries and the unit.

Smoke alarms with non-replaceable batteries need the entire smoke alarm unit replaced every ten years. Other alarms need batteries replaced every year, and the unit replaced every ten.

3. Identify how many smoke alarms you need.

According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), smoke alarms should be on every level, including the basement. It is recommended to install a smoke alarm in every bedroom.

4. Do not paint your smoke alarm.

Smoke alarms are designed to have airflow. Painting your alarm may cause issues with fire detection.

5. Smoke alarms should be interconnected.

All of the alarms in the home should sound, not just one. This keeps all quarters notified.

6. Consider a combination alarm.

Carbon monoxide gas is extremely toxic and dangerous. It is odorless and tasteless, making it very difficult to detect. Purchase a fire alarm that includes a carbon monoxide sensor.

7. Ask a professional to install detectors.

If you need help installing, testing or changing batteries in your smoke alarms, contact your local fire department, an electrician or the American Red Cross.

Be sure your home or workplace has a fire emergency plan in place and conduct regular fire drills. And remember, when in doubt throw it out. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.

For more information on Emergency Preparedness, contact SERVPRO of Davenport/Bettendorf at (563) 386-3540.

Fire, Smoke and Soot Restoration Services

1/4/2018 (Permalink)

Structural Cleaning

After a smoke or fire damage, ceilings, walls, woodwork, carpeting and floors will often need a thorough cleaning. SERVPRO of Davenport/Bettendorf will pretest to determine the extent of damage. We use specific equipment and cleaning products to clean and protect different types of surfaces. Depending on the amount of soot, we may even be able to reduce the cost of recovery by cleaning lighter soot deposits.

Contents Cleaning

All of the restorable contents in affected areas will be professionally cleaned and deodorized. This includes area rugs, furniture, draperies, and upholstery. We will begin by inspecting and testing all fabrics in the structure in order to determine the most appropriate cleaning method. All other restorable contents will be cleaned and deodorized to preloss condition. This includes electronics, art, wood furniture, kitchen items, clothing, bedding, bric-a-brac and much more. IF requested, we can provide an inventory list of all “to be claimed” items.

Deodorization

SERVPRO of Davenport/Bettendorf provides specialized services which ride your property of offensive odors left by fire or smoke damage. It is important to note that we do not merely mask the doors with a fragrance, we seek out the sources of the odor and remove them.

If your property does suffer fire damage, we are readily available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and 365 days a year. Contact SERVPRO of Davenport/Bettendorf at (563) 386-3540. We are always here to help.

Emergency Fire Damage Process Overview

1/4/2018 (Permalink)

One Hour

Within one hour from notice of loss, SERVPRO of Davenport/Bettendorf will contact you to arrange for service. You will know help is on the way.

Four Hours

A project manager will be on-site to start mitigation services. The key to reducing damage and saving money is responding quickly to your damage.

Detailed Explanation

A project manager will walk you through the job process step-by-step, explaining what to expect and the anticipated outcome.

Pretesting

A project manager will begin pretesting for restorability, working from the source of the damage outward.

Eight Hours

A verbal briefing of the scope will be communicated to the appropriate person, normally your adjuster or property manager,

Cleaning, Restoration, and Deodorization

SERVPRO Davenport/Bettendorf professionals will work neatly and efficiently to help you regain control of your property when a damaging event has taken over. They will use state-of-the-art restoration techniques to ensure your property is taken care of right the first time.

Final Walk-Through

After the work has been completed, a final walk-through will be conducted with you to help ensure your satisfaction.

If your property does suffer fire damage, we are readily available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and 365 days a year. Contact SERVPRO of Davenport/Bettendorf at (563) 386-3540. We are always here to help.

Halt Winter Heating Hazards

12/19/2017 (Permalink)

Around this time of the year, we encounter changes in weather and low temperatures. In an effort to stay warm, many people use alternative heat sources such as fireplaces or space heaters.

According to the National Fire Protection Association, the annual direct property damage from heating fires is estimated at a whopping $1 billion dollars. This is a serious matter and it is important to abide by the following safety tips to reduce your risk of a heating-related fire:

  • Keep anything flammable at least three feet away from heating equipment, like the furnace, fireplace, wood stove, or a portable space heater. Have a three foot "kid-free zone" around open fires and space heaters.
  • Make sure the fireplace has a sturdy screen to stop sparks from flying into the room. Ashes should be cool before putting them in a metal container. Keep the container at a safe distance away from your home. 
  • Remember to turn portable heaters off when leaving the room or going to bed. 
  • Always use the right kind of fuel, specified by the manufacturer, for fuel burning space heaters. 
  • Have heating equipment and chimneys cleaned and inspected every year by a qualified professional. 
  • Have a qualified professional install stationary space heating equipment, water heaters or central heating equipment according to the local codes and manufacturer's instructions.
  • Test smoke alarms monthly. 

If your property does suffer fire damage, we are readily available 24 hours a day 7 days a week. Contact SERVPRO of Davenport/Bettendorf at 563-386-3540. We are always here to help.  

Holiday Safety: By the Numbers

12/19/2017 (Permalink)

The Holiday season is a time for joy and happiness. But unfortunately, at times it can also bring danger. Fires around the winter time are at it's peak. They can claim the lives of many Americans and injure even more. The statistics below are provided by the United States Fire Administration (UFSA): 

400

The average number of lives lost due to holiday fires. 

1,650 

The average number of injuries due to holiday fires.

$990 million

The average cost in damages due to holiday fires. 

We can decrease these numbers by taking safety precautions. Always remember to:

  • Use only non-flammable decorations
  • Maintain Holiday lights
  • Do not overload electrical outlets
  • Avoid using lit candles
  • Don't block exits 

Consider all of this information as you enter the holiday season. Whether you are ready for the holidays or not, SERVPRO will always be ready. And always ready to help you. If disaster does strike your home or business during the holiday season, SERVPRO of Davenport/Bettendorf is on call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week,  365 days a year. Call us at (563) 386-3540.

8 Ways to Avoid Holiday Fires

12/7/2017 (Permalink)

December is the peak time of year for fires. In particularly, candle fires. Listed below are 8 things you should not do this holiday season:

  1. Do not place candles on cluttered surfaces. Place them at least 12 inches away from anything that burns.
  2. Do not use flammable decorations.
  3. Do not place Christmas decor close to any heat source. Christmas trees and decor should be at least three feet away.
  4. Do not overload electrical outlets.
  5. Do not link more than three Christmas lights together.
  6. Do not leave candles or lights on when you are leaving your property.
  7. Do not plug space heaters into extension cords. Only directly into outlets.
  8. Do not succumb to unattended cooking. Stay in the kitchen and keep an eye on cooking ware and cooking surfaces.

With all things considered, keep this list in mind as you prepare for holiday festivities. Our goal is to help keep homes merry and bright!

If disaster does strike, we are readily available 24 hours a day 7 days a week. Your local SERVPRO Franchise Professionals wish you a safe and happy holiday season!

What you need to know about electrical fires

12/7/2017 (Permalink)

As we are thrust into the colder months, the amount of time spent indoors increases significantly. As a result of this, more appliances are generated. Many light and heat sources are utilized for both warmth and for holiday decor. During this time of the year, it is no surprise that heating and electric bills rise. However, the risk of an electrical fire rises as well.  December and January are the peak months for electrical fires.

According to the National Fire Protection Association report, US Fire departments respond to approximately 48,000 electrical-related fires annually. The cause of these fires may be due to faulty circuits, overloaded outlets, or electrical failures. Further research cited that 74 percent of residential fires were caused by some type of electrical failure or malfunction which contributed to the ignition.

Avoid these electrical fires by following these safety precautions:

  • Replace or repair damaged or loose electrical cords.
  • Avoid running extension cords across doorways or under carpets. Consider having additional outlets added by a qualified electrician so you do not have to use extension cords.
  • Avoid overloading outlets. Plug only one high-wattage appliance into each receptacle outlet at a time.
  • If outlets or switches feel warm, frequent problems with blowing fuses or tipping circuits, or flickering or dimming lights, call a qualified electrician.  

Follow these tips to prevent a cooking fire from happening in your home.

10/6/2016 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Follow these tips to prevent a cooking fire from happening in your home. SERVPRO of Davenport/Bettendorf is available 24/7 to help if a cooking fire damages your home.

Cooking fires are the number one cause of home fires. With the following tips, given to us by our friends at the National Fire Protection Association, you will be able to minimize the chances of a cooking fire happening in your home.

 

Cooking Safety

  • If you are sleepy or if you have consumed alcohol, it is best to avoid using stove at all.
  • If you are frying, grilling, or broiling food, stay in the kitchen. Even if you have to leave the kitchen for even a short amount a time, turn off the stove.
  • Use a timer! Don't let yourself forget that you have food cooking.
  • Keep all flammable materials away from the stovetop. Paper towels, oven mitts, wrappers, or anything else that could catch fire should be kept away.
  • Keep children at least 3 feet away from the stove. 

Should you have a small grease/cooking fire...

  • If a small fire occurs on the stovetop, place a lid over the pan, and turn off the burner. Do not remove until it has completely cooled.
  • If a fire occurs in the oven, turn off the heat and keep the door closed.

If you have any doubts about putting out a small cooking fire..

  • Get out immediately, and close the door when you leave to help prevent the fire spreading.
  • Once you are outside, call 9-1-1 or your local fire department.

 

Should a cooking fire damage your home. Contact SERVPRO of Davenport/Bettendorf at (563) 386-3540.