Recent Fire Damage Posts

SERVPRO Tips: What TO Do When Smoke & Soot Invade Your Home

11/17/2019 (Permalink)

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  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.

SERVPRO Tips: How to prevent a dryer lint fire

11/11/2019 (Permalink)

While the kitchen is the most common room for house fires, dryer fires are another common problem. The heating of the dryer combined with lint build up can cause your dryer to burst into flames. A lint fire is scary, but there are steps that can be taken to prevent it.

Safety First

It's important to realize that even when the lint is properly cleaned from your dryer, there is still a chance of a dryer fire. For this reason, you should never run your dryer:

  • When you are sleeping
  • When you are not home
  • When you are going to be outdoors

Leaving your dryer unattended can cause the fire to spread further, which can cause extensive damage. In addition, unplug your dryer before you start cleaning out the lint.

Vacuum Out the Lint Screen and Dryer

You probably already clean out your lint screen every time you start a new load. However, a lot of lint can get past the screen, and eventually lead to a lint fire. Take your vacuum attachment and clean underneath and around the lint screen the best you can. Refer to your owner's manual to see how to safely vacuum out the inside of your dryer.

Cleaning Out the Hose

Pull out any lint you can reach after removing the hose from the back of your dryer and the wall. If you can't reach it all, use a dryer vent snake to push it all the way through. In addition, check the pathway from the hole in the wall to the outside of your house. Use the snake to ensure that all of the lint is out of the vent.
These steps can help reduce your risk of a lint fire. You should do this at least once every six months, and more often if you do a lot of laundry. If you do experience a dryer fire, let your fire restoration experts do what needs to be done to cleanup the mess.

Give Soot The Boot, with SERVPRO of Vigo County!

10/16/2019 (Permalink)

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 Vigo County 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 – (812) 242-9611

Fire Can Happen Anywhere

9/26/2019 (Permalink)

Fires can happen anywhere, including when you leave your home unoccupied. A quick trip to the store can end terribly when you return to see fire trucks swarmed around your house. This scenario does not put you and your family in the same risks families experience when a fire starts during the night. While your smoke detector hopefully wakes you, the smoke can make escaping extremely difficult. Flames can take over your entire house when no one is there to call for help.

Our goal is to help families prevent fire damage, and where it affects homes, to mitigate the situation, so those properties become safe to live in again. The best way to deal with fire damage is by preventing it from happening.

During the summer months, many families enjoy outdoor cooking on the grill or fire pit. Grills put away when still holding hot coals can cause stored chemicals in the garage to ignite. Fireworks stored for Independence Day celebrations can turn into problems when young children locate them and then mishandle them inside the home by trying to light them. Electrical hazards develop when using tools outside with the cords laid in the driveway can later create hot spots when using the tool inside the house.

Waiting until your grill cools off completely before rolling the unit into the garage keeps combustible liquids from getting hot enough to burn. Keeping combustible liquids in a cabinet or shelving area away from other items can also help. Installing a smoke detector in the garage can also alert you of a fire before it grows too large.

Explaining to children about lighters and matches and their inherent dangers can help prevent fires caused by curious youngsters. However, placing both fire starters and fireworks well out of reach and out of range even if chairs get pushed up against tall cabinets can work wonders at avoiding tempting situations.

Keeping cords in good condition and replacing damaged ones effectively stops fires and electrical shocks from hurting anyone. Always check the gauge of the wires before replacing them to avoid damaging the tool.

SERVPRO wants to remind families to install smoke alarms in strategic locations in your house and check the batteries monthly. You should choose a family member's birthday or anniversary as the date to install new batteries, to keep them fresh. When fire damage does happen, call us and we will send out qualified mitigation specialists.

We are faster to any disaster and we will make things "Like it never even happened."

The Importance of Working Smoke Alarms

9/25/2019 (Permalink)

Having fire alarms in your house and working is one if the most important things you can do to stay prepared if a fire did happen. It is a small items that seems to be overlooked quite a bit but with just a few minutes of your time it could save yours and your families lives.

According to www.cpsc.gov, they indicate why smoke alarms are important and also where smoke alarms should be installed in your home.

Why Are Smoke Alarms Important?

Every year in the United States, about 2,000 people lose their lives in residential fires. In a fire, smoke and deadly gases tend to spread farther and faster than heat. That's one reason why most fire victims die from inhalation of smoke and toxic gases, not from burns. A majority of fatal fires happen when families are asleep because occupants are unaware of the fire until there is not adequate time to escape. A smoke alarm stands guard around the clock, and when it first senses smoke, it sounds a shrill alarm. This often allows a family the precious, but limited, time needed to escape. About two-thirds of home fire deaths occur in homes with no smoke alarms or no working smoke alarms.  Properly installed and maintained smoke alarms are considered to be one of the best and least expensive means of providing an early warning of a potentially deadly fire and could reduce by almost half the risk of dying from a fire in your home. 

Where Should Smoke Alarms be Installed? Smoke alarms should be installed on every level of the home, outside sleeping areas, and inside bedrooms A smoke alarm should be installed and maintained according to the manufacturer’s instructions. When installing a smoke alarm, many factors influence where you will place the alarm, including how many are to be installed.  Consider placing alarms along your escape path to assist in egress in limited-visibility conditions. In general, you should place alarms in the center of a ceiling or, if you place them on a wall, they should be near the ceiling.

If you have a fire, water, mold, or asbestos disaster, give SERVPRO a call today!

How to Get Rid of a Smoke Smell After a Fire

2/20/2019 (Permalink)

After a fire, everything in your home may smell like smoke. Many textiles and materials absorb the odor, which can make it hard to remove. When possible, air out your home for as long as possible as quickly after the fire to allow as much of the smoke smell to dissipate on its own. After that, there are some steps to take to remove the smoke smell from specific materials.

From Clothing

The key to removing a smoky smell from your clothing is to act quickly. The quicker you act, the more successful you will be. First, soak the clothing in warm water with laundry detergent or white vinegar. Allow the clothes to sit overnight. The detergent or vinegar will work to neutralize the smell. Once the smell has been removed, wash and dry the clothing. Do not wash or dry the clothing until you are sure the scent has been removed, as it can set in the smell.

From Flooring

Flooring, including carpet, wood and tile, can all absorb smoke after a fire. The best way to properly clean your flooring is to call in a professional. A professional fire restoration company can work to restore your flooring and clean it, as can a carpet cleaner or tile cleaner. Hot water extraction is usually the best method for removing soot and scents.

From Your Walls

Unfortunately, after a fire, your walls can have a smoke scent that lingers. A professional should be called in, as removing the scent is not always easy. In some cases, the scent may actually be trapped in the insulation housed behind the wall. In other cases, the scent may be so embedded in the drywall that replacing the drywall is the best option. If the scent is faint and the drywall is in good condition, painting the drywall may help to remove the scent.

After a fire, it is well worth it to hire a fire damage specialist to come in and complete the cleanup process. Here at SERVPRO of Vigo County, we are committed to helping those who have gone through a fire get their home back. We can help with water damage cleanup, fire restoration and removal of soot and smoke smells. Call us now at (812) 242-9611 to get started.

Holiday Fire Risks

1/4/2019 (Permalink)

Christmas Trees

One in every four home Christmas tree fires is caused by electrical problems. Be careful about the placement of the tree in your home, as well as lights and decorations that could potentially ignite. Always keep a close eye on the tree when it is lighted, and follow these safety measures:

  • Buy quality lights with a safety rating
  • Never use old lights with frayed cords
  • Use heavy-duty, safety-rated extension cords
  • Don’t overload your electrical outlets with too many plugs
  • Do not leave your tree lighted when you are sleeping or not at home
  • Place tree safely away from heaters, wood stoves and fireplaces
  • Do not let anyone smoke near the tree
  • Keep the tree hydrated with plenty of water

Candles

Sure, candles provide a certain ambience and can fill you home with wonderful aromas, but open flames can present a huge fire risk. The incidence of candle fires is four times higher during December than other months. If you use candles, never leave them unattended while lighted. Keep them far away from any curtains, bedding, kitchen items such as pot holders or dishcloths, or towels in a bathroom, to prevent a high flame from igniting nearby fabric. Also keep them away from open windows and doors to avoid the chance of a gust of wind knocking them over.

Children and Pets

Pay particular attention to young children and pets who can inadvertently topple lighted candles, ornaments and trees while playing. Keep lighted candles elevated so they do not have access. As children get a little older and curious, make sure matches and lighters are kept out of reach. Purchasing child-safety lighters is a good preventive measure. Never leave a child or pet unattended in a room with a lighted candle. Consider using flameless, battery-operated candles to be on the safe side. These can provide extra peace of mind during the busiest days of the holiday season when a lot of people are in your home, and you are busy cooking or talking with guests.

Keep the joy in your holidays by making sure you decorate, cook and entertain safely this season.

SERVPRO of Vigo County is a locally owned and operated leader in restoration and cleaning needs. We serve local communities in the Terre Haute, Indiana, area. We have the training, equipment and expertise to handle your needs following disasters and accidents in your home and business. We offer 24-hour emergency service and are faster to any disaster. Call us today at (812) 242-9611 when you need help getting your property back in order and looking its best. We are part of SERVPRO, a trusted leader in the restoration industry with over 1,700 franchises in the United States and Canada.

Thanksgiving Kitchen Fire Safety Tips

11/5/2018 (Permalink)

As family and friends come together to celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday, food is, of course, a big focus. This yearly feast means kitchens are placed in overdrive. It’s a chaotic time that calls for being aware and alert, as Thanksgiving has the dubious distinction of being the peak day for home cooking fires. Make sure you and your loved ones, as well as your property, remain safe this holiday.

Steps You Can Take to Protect from Kitchen Fires

  • Be Proactive– by testing the batteries in all your smoke, fire and CO2 alarms to make sure they are operational. Keep your oven and stovetop clean and grease-free. Do not leave combustible materials like oven mitts or dishtowels near a hot oven or stove. Do not allow young children to get near stoves and ovens. Always have a fire extinguisher within arm’s reach in the kitchen.
  • Be Attentive – never leave cooking food on the stove unattended. If you have food in the oven and want to step into another room, make sure to set a timer. Keep pot and pan handles turned so they cannot be knocked over as people pass by. Keep electric appliance cords dangling off counters, along and with knives that could be grabbed by children. If you use candles, make sure they are kept well out of reach of children or breezes that could topple them over. Never leave them unattended. On more hectic holidays, consider using battery-powered candles to keep everyone safe and sound. If food ignites, throw baking soda on it or cover it with a pot cover.

Be Cautious When Deep-Frying a Turkey

Some people claim to like the taste of deep-fried turkey better than the more traditional oven cook. If you chose to cook your turkey this way, make sure to follow safety measures.

If a fire starts in your home, quickly call 911, after you and your family members and pets have safely evacuated. Do not return to the dwelling for any reason. Let the professionals take it from there when they arrive.

SERVPRO of Vigo County is a locally owned and operated leader in restoration and cleaning needs. so we are part of this community too. We serve local communities in the Terre Haute, Indiana, geographical location, so we are part of this community too. We have the training, equipment and expertise to handle your restoration and cleaning needs following disasters and accidents that occur in your home and business. We offer 24-hour emergency service and are faster to any disaster. Call us today at (812) 242-9611 when you need help in getting your property back in order and looking its best. We are part of SERVPRO, a trusted leader in the restoration industry with over 1,700 franchises in the United States and Canada.

Common Causes of House Fires

10/15/2018 (Permalink)

House fires are devastating and often tragic to human and pet life, in addition to causing smoke and water damage to property. But house fires are traditionally caused by just a few very common scenarios, which means they are highly preventable. Make sure you and your family stay safe from the potential dangers of a house fire.

Major Culprits
In 2016, fire departments responded to a house fire every 90 seconds. Here are some of the leading causes of home fires:

  1. Cooking is the leading cause of home fires and home fire injuries. It is the second leading cause of home fire deaths. Unattended cooking is the primary cause of such fires and frying poses the greatest risk of fire.
  2. Smoking is the leading cause of home fire deaths and has been for decades. Smoking materials account for the fifth largest cause of house fires overall.


Always take extra precautions against these common causes of house fires to keep your home and family safe from harm:

  • Kitchen fires are most often started by grease from frying. When a pot or pan overheats and splatters grease, it can take virtually just seconds for a fire to erupt. Make sure combustible materials such as oven mitts, dish towels, and paper towels are not located near the stove or oven, where they can easily catch fire. Always have an operating fire extinguisher in the kitchen so you can effectively douse any flames before they get out of control. Never leave food cooking on a stove unattended.
  • Candles should never be left unattended. They should be kept in sturdy, heat-safe holders on a stable surface. They should be kept away from children, pets and any flammable materials like curtains, furniture, and carpeting. Also, they should not be located near an open window because a breeze could tip them over.
  • Electrical fires occur mostly during winter months and typical are caused by home-heating equipment or faulty electrical wiring in a home, particularly out-of-date systems. Make sure your heating equipment is clear of any combustible materials and in good working order. If you live in an older home, check with an electrician to make sure your system is up to code and the load demand is not too intense. Discard any frayed or old cords. Be particularly careful with space heaters and never leave them unattended while in operation.
  • Children are curious and can cause a fire by playing with matches or lighters. Make sure these items are safely stored well out of their reach. Only buy child-resistant lighters.
  • Smoking cigarettes is the leading cause of house fire fatalities. If you smoke inside your home, use a large and deep tray that is cleaned daily. A smoking cigarette butt can be left smoldering for hours before igniting a fire. Never smoke in bed or when tired and never leave a lit cigarette unattended.

Fire Prevention Week
The devastating Great Chicago Fire of 1911, that caused 250 deaths, led to the creation of the annual Fire Prevention Week from October 3rd to 9th. Sponsored by the National Fire Prevention Association, this week helps to raise awareness of fire safety and prevention. Take some time to brush up on your fire education during the month of October.

If Your Home is on fire, families should have an emergency plan in place, with all members on board, with a planned escape route. If there is an active fire in your home that has not been immediately controlled, everyone should exit the home immediately. Call 911 once you are clear of the structure. Under no circumstances should you re-enter a burning home. Wait for emergency personnel to arrive and allow them to do what they are trained to do.

SERVPRO of Vigo County is a locally-owned and -operated leader in restoration and cleaning needs, so we are part of this community, too. We have the training, equipment, and expertise to handle your restoration and cleaning needs following disasters and accidents that occur in your home and business. We offer 24-hour emergency service and are faster to any disaster. Call us at (812) 242-9611 when you need help getting your property back in order and looking its best. We are part of SERVPRO, a trusted leader in the restoration industry with over 1,700 franchises in the United States and Canada.

Smoke and Soot Cleanup in Terre Haute

7/30/2018 (Permalink)

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 Vigo County 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 – (812) 242-9611

Reasons and Tips To Keep Your Dryer Vent Clean

5/9/2018 (Permalink)

Many people may not realize the importance of keeping a dryer vent clean. However, keeping your dryer vent clear of debris is the first step in preventing a lint fire from occurring in your home. According to the U.S. Fire Administration, January is the peak month for dryer fire incidents, so be particularly mindful to remove lint during the fall and winter time.


Preventing Losses


• The best way to avoid a lint fire is by simply cleaning the lint which has collected in your dryer’s lint trap after every load.
• Cleaning your lint trap ensures that debris does not accumulate over time in your dryer vent and restrict airflow through the unit’s exhaust.
• If the airway becomes restricted, there may be excess heat during operation of your dryer, which can cause flammable materials such as lint to ignite and cause damage to your property.
• Annually, there are 2,900 dryer fires reported, and every year, an estimated $35 million in property loss results from these fires. The leading cause of residential fires results from a failure to keep the ventilation free of debris.


Keep It Clean


A great way to keep your dryer’s exhaust ventilation clean is by using a rotary vent auger, or dryer snake, which is a bristled and flexible tool used to clear hard-to-reach areas of ductwork, such as your dryer exhaust. You should clear the vent anywhere from one to three times per year, depending on the number of people in your household, as lint and debris may begin to accumulate over a shorter amount of time if more loads of laundry are being done on average. You should be able to clean the vent on your own, but it is also possible to hire professionals to clean it for you.

Remembering these guidelines may help prevent a lint fire in your home. For more information for residential fire prevention, you can also check the local fire codes in Terre Haute, IN.

For more information, please visit us at http://www.SERVPROvigocounty.com/.

Terre Haute House Fire

3/14/2018 (Permalink)

Call us for your house fire needs.... we can make it "Like it never even happened!" SERVPRO of Vigo County 812-242-9611

Furnace caught fire with no one home resulting in a house engulfed with flames as the fire department arrived. Homeowner stated that when she arrived "he thought there was no way it would be back to new without tearing it completely down."

SERVPRO of Vigo County was called in to making it "Like it never even happened."

After fixing the house back to new and having vandalism damage during the process of putting it back to new not once but twice. The customer is back in the home and very happy with the whole process.

Customer stated that even though it took longer than expected due to the two vandalisms, he was very happy with how everything turned out in the end. He stated that he would use our services again if it ever would to happen hat he would need them.

House Fire in Vigo County

2/27/2017 (Permalink)

This is a before picture of what we walked into after the fire.

Furnace caught fire with no one home resulting in a house engulfed with flames as the fire department arrived. Homeowner stated that when she arrived "he thought there was no way it would be back to new without tearing it completely down."


SERVPRO of Vigo County & CPSV was called in to making it "Like it never even happened."


After fixing the house back to new and having vandalism damage during the process of putting it back to new not once but twice. The customer is back in the home and very happy with the whole process.


Customer stated that even though it took longer than expected due to the two vandalisms, he was very happy with how everything turned out in the end. He stated that he would use our services again if it ever would to happen hat he would need them.