The Dos and Don'ts of Fire Damage
A firefighter fighting the flames in a home.
Flames roaring, smoke billowing from windows, lights and sirens blaring…
In other words: a property owner's nightmare. Dealing with a fire can be incredibly demanding and frustrating. Not only do you have to worry about structural damage but also the clean-up and restoration of your property. Skip the stress and call SERVPRO of Greensburg, the locally owned, operated, and trusted leader in fire damage restoration. We are open 24/7 and our highly trained technicians are always prepared to make your fire and smoke damage look "Like it never even happened." Although we are faster to any size disaster, we suggest you follow these “Dos” and “Don’ts” before we arrive at your home or business:
- Limit movement in the home to prevent soot particles from being embedded into the carpet.
- Keep hands clean to limit soot spread.
- Wipe soot from chrome on kitchen and bathroom faucets, trim, and appliances. After wiping down, these surfaces can be protected with a light coating of lubricant.
- Change the HVAC filter, but leave the system off until a trained professional has inspected it.
- Watch for any slip, trip, or fall hazards created by the fire.
- Attempt to wash any walls or painted surfaces.
- Attempt to shampoo carpet or upholstered furniture.
- Consume food or beverages that may have been stored close to the fire, heat, or water.
- Send garments to the dry cleaner. Improper cleaning may set smoke odor.
- Turn on ceiling fixtures if the ceiling is wet or sagging.
We are proud to have had the opportunity to serve Greensburg and its surrounding areas since 2004. If you require assistance, please call us at (724) 837-8830!
Planning a Vacation? SERVPRO is here to help!
With the hottest months in full swing, it is about that time of the year to cool down with a summer vacation. While planning for time away, many homeowners forget that protecting their home is just as important as the vacation itself. To keep your home safe from burglary and internal damage, here are tips and tricks from SERVPRO of Greensburg:
- Have a close friend or neighbor be checking your home daily
- Provide this neighbor with emergency contact names and phone numbers
- Provide information for the alarm system to the house sitter
- Leave your porch lights on
- Cancel mail or have it collected daily
- Unplug electronics to cut down on any possible shortages
- Check smoke detectors to make sure they are working properly
- Shut off gas and water at the meter, supply, or appliances
- Turn off water valves to washing machine, sinks, and dishwasher
- Adjust your thermostat to 75-80 – this will help control usage
Protecting your home before leaving can help preserve your peace of mind while on vacation. If disaster strikes while you are away, call SERVPRO of Greensburg at (724) 837-8830. Let us show you that we are faster to any size disaster!
Understanding the Water Damage Timeline
Water damages are incredibly unpredictable, striking when you least expect it. Whether it be severe weather or leaking pipes, SERVPRO of Greensburg understands the stress and inconvenience that comes with damage to your home or business. Water damages progress rapidly, causing an excessive loss in a short window of time. While we are open and always prepared to respond to these losses 24 hours a day, seven days a week, we believe that it is essential for YOU to understand how water damages work, and the timeline they generally follow when left untreated. Doing so will allow us to help you successfully mitigate, remediate, and salvage as much of your precious belongings as we possibly can.
Water Damage Timeline
- Water spreads throughout the property, both in visible and non-visible cavities.
- Water is absorbed into drywall, flooring, and furniture.
- Furniture finishes may bleed, causing staining on surrounding carpets.
- Paper documents, photographs, and books absorb water and begin to swell.
Within 24 Hours:
- Drywall begins to swell and break down.
- Metal surfaces begin to tarnish.
- Odor begins to develop.
- Furniture may begin to swell and warp.
48 Hours to One Week:
- Microbial growth begins and may start spreading.
- Doors, windows, and studs begin to swell and warp.
- Metal begins to rust.
- Paint will begin to blister.
- Conditions can become hazardous for occupancy.
Greater than One Week:
- Structural safety is compromised.
- Microbial growth intensifies.
- Occupancy can be extremely unsafe.
- Cleanup and Restoration costs increase dramatically.
The longer the water sits, the more damage your home will obtain. That's why it is crucial to call the team that is faster to any size disaster: SERVPRO of Greensburg! Our teams of highly skilled technicians provide the best possible customer service and make your water damage look "Like it never even happened." For more information about our services or company, call us at (724) 837-4126.
4th of July Fire Safety
With Independence Day on its way, many communities look forward to celebrating the USA's freedom with a bang! Literally. While fireworks are a fun way to show some national pride, they can be extremely dangerous to homes and businesses, especially in wooded areas.
Whether you are in your backyard or at a local show, here are some tips from the US Forest Service on what to do if a fire flares up near you:
- Remain calm.
- Move flammable materials such as wood to a safe place away from the house.
- Close the garage door, but leave it unlocked (an electric door may need to be disconnected from the power source to move manually).
- Open the entrance of your yard to facilitate the access of the firefighters and vehicles.
- Shut off any fuel tanks and gas cylinders.
- Close all exterior vents, exterior doors (do not lock them), and windows.
- Make sure all garden hoses connect to a faucet with a nozzle set on SPRAY.
- Do a headcount to make sure that all family members are safe and accounted for
Enjoy your 4th of July weekend and call SERVPRO of Greensburg at (724) 837-8830 for any smoke, water, or fire damage cleanup!
Broken Pipe? Follow These 3 Steps…
Amid the rainy season in Pennsylvania, many homeowners in Greensburg worry about flash flooding and how it can affect their homes. While wet weather is a common cause of flooding, many homeowners overlook another common source: leaking/bursting pipes. If this happens to you, the first thing to do is contact a professional to fix the burst pipe immediately. After that is taken care of, be sure to follow these three steps below to help minimize water damage in your home:
- Stop the Flow of Water
The first thing you, as a homeowner, can do is prevent the flooding from getting any worse. You will need to shut off the main water line. After you do so, you still need to drain the pipes of all water. This will require you to run every sink and flush each toilet in your house at least once. You will also need to turn off your home’s water heater. Once there is no running tap water left, the leak should stop entirely.
- Inspect the Damage
Next, you will need to locate the burst pipes. If you are able to find the broken pipe, then you should take pictures of the damage for insurance purposes. If you cannot find the culprit, then you will need to bring in a professional crew as soon as possible.
- Contact SERVPRO of Greensburg
Even if you are fairly handy around the house, it is always a good idea to call a professional team to take care of any water damage just to be safe. There is a lot of remediation that needs to take place, such as drying any damaged structures and preventing mold growth. Professionals also know how to safely work around water to prevent electrocution or illness.
Choose the team that can make your water disaster seem "Like it never even happened." SERVPRO of Greensburg is here to help 24 hours a day, seven days a week. To learn more about our services, please call us at (724) 837-8830!
The professionals at SERVPRO of Greensburg have seen the devastation that a grill fire can cause, and we want to help you avoid severe damage.
If you are part of that 8,900, we can help! Call SERVPRO of Greensburg at (724) 837-8830
With the summer months comes delicious BBQ! But before you get too excited about all of those backyard cookouts, let us give you a few tips and tricks to make sure you entertain safely.
The professionals at SERVPRO of Greensburg understand that BBQs are a great way to bring together friends and family. Still, they can also be a significant source of fire damage if not used safely.
Here are 5 BBQ grill fire prevention tips to help keep your summer BBQs safe:
- Keep a close eye on the grill at all times.
- Make sure the grill is in a well-ventilated area.
- Clean the grill regularly to prevent grease build-up
- Keep flammable materials away from the grill.
- Use the right fuel.
Keep on reading to learn more about each of these tips in detail!
What causes a grill fire?
Grill fires can happen for various reasons, but the most common cause is an overheated grill. When the fat or grease from your food drips down onto the heat source, it can burst into flame. As well as that, sparks from the grill coming in contact with the heat source are another cause for devastating grill fires.
Five tips to prevent grill fires
Now that we know what can cause a grill fire let’s go over some tips on avoiding them:
1) Keep a close eye on the grill at all times
Keeping a close eye on your grill may seem like a no-brainer, but it is essential to be aware and watcful whenever it is in use. If you leave the grill unattended, you risk a fire starting.
2) Make sure the grill is in a well-ventilated area
It is crucial to make sure the grill is in a well-ventilated area. If the area lacks ventilation, the smoke will have nowhere to go. When smoke becomes trapped, it can cause a fire.
3) Clean the grill regularly to prevent grease build-up
Cleaning your grill is one of the best and most foolproof ways to avoid fires. When you remove any old food and grease build-up, it greatly reduces the chances of a fire. Make sure to clean your grill before and after each use.
4) Keep flammable materials away from the grill.
It’s important to keep anything flammable away from the grill. Everyday flammable items include things like paper plates, napkins, and towels. If these materials come in contact with the heat source, they can catch fire quickly.
5) Use the right fuel
Another way to prevent grill fires is to use the correct fuel type. Only use charcoal or propanel, and make sure to follow the instructions on how to light the grill. Never add accelerants to your grill, as this can cause a fire.
What to do if a grill fire starts
If a grill fire does start, the first thing you should do is turn off the heat source. If the fire is small, you can try to extinguish it with a fire extinguisher. If you don’t have a fire extinguisher, baking soda, sand, or salt can be used, but NEVER put water on a grill fire. If the fire is large, or if you cannot put it out, call 911 immediately.
Once the fire has been extinguished, you will need to assess the damage. If there is any damage to your grill, it’s imperative to have it repaired or replaced before using it again.
If your home sustains any fire damage from the grill fire, SERVPRO of Greensburg is here to help. We are a 24-hour emergency service company, and we are faster to any size disaster.
Preventing grill fires this summertime will help you avoid costly repairs and damages. Use these five tips to help you enjoy a safe and fun summer grilling season!
When you contact us, we will start the fire damage restoration process right away. Our fire restoration process includes:
- Assessment of the damage
- Pack out of undamaged belongings
- Contents cleaning
Here at SERVPRO of Greensburg, we know the overwhelming emotions that come with a fire in your home. That is why our goal is to make the restoration process as easy and stress-free as possible. To ensure this happens, we will work hand in hand with your insurance company and keep you updated throughout the entire process.
If you have any questions about fire damage restoration or if you need emergency services, feel free to contact us today. SERVPRO of Greensburg is here to make it "Like it never even happened."
SERVPRO of Greensburg/Candle Safety
Millions of decorative candles are sold every year. They bring a soothing ambiance and different aromas for the rooms in your home.
Are Candles a Fire Hazard?
Candles might seem harmless on the surface until you look at how significant their damages can and have been in U.S. homes. FEMA estimates that there are more than 15.000 home candle fires every year, many resulting in injury for death.
Candle Fire Safety Tips
Here are a few tips to follow to reduce your risk of a fire in your home while your candle is burning:
- Burning candles should never be unattended.
- Candles should never be under shelves or other enclosed spaces.
- Keep candles at least 12 inches from anything that can burn.
- Candles should never be placed where children and pets can knock it over.
- To prevent uneven or rapid burning and excessive dripping avoid drafts, vents or air currents.
- Always put candles on a heat resistant surface.
- Use a suitable candle holder sturdy enough to avoid being easily knocked over.
- NEVER move or touch a candle while it is burning or while the wax is liquefied.
- Make sure that you have a working smoke detector in every room where you burn candles.
- Extinguish candles with a candle snuffer rather than blowing them out, a hot was can splatter.
Following a Candle Fire - Fire Restoration
Following these safety tips when you’re enjoying the candle aromas in your home, can lower your risk for a home fire in the future. If candles do happen to cause a home fire and you’re in need of fire restoration solutions, call SERVPRO of Greensburg at (724)837-8830. Our technicians will be respectful of your home and work with you to put your home back to home sweet home again.
Grease Fires - How They Can Affect Your Westmoreland County Home
SERVPRO of Greenburg can help with all your fire restoration needs.
Cooking at home can be a fire hazard due to grease fires. The National Fire Protection Association reports that firefighters respond to roughly 172,100 fires started from cooking each year, or an average of 471 cooking fires each day.
Though there are more occurrences around the winter holidays. We should be prepared year-round for grease fires. Here are a few ways to prevent these grease fires:
- Never leave a pot or pan unattended
- Be gentle when adding food or oil to the pot or pan
- Use a thermometer to monitor temperature
- Always keep a lid, baking soda, and salt nearby
- Keep anything flammable (wooden spoon, oven mitts, etc.) away from pot or pan
These measures can all significantly help prevent a grease fire. Sometimes, these fires do break out, and here’s what you can do to fight it:
- If your fire leaves the stovetop, call 911 immediately
- Cover your pot or pan with a metal pan or cooking sheet
- NEVER use water to put out a grease fire
- Turn your burner off
- Use a Class-K fire extinguisher to fight the fire
Remember, if your fire leaves your stovetop, you should call 911 immediately. If those prevention tips do not work, and you do experience a fire, please follow those tips. If your Westmoreland County home has some damage, SERVPRO of Greensburg can help with all your fire restoration needs.
SERVPRO of Greensburg can provide you with:
- Board-up and tarp-up services
- Smoke and soot removal
- Odor removal
- Carpet and upholstery cleaning
- Caring for your belongings
SERVPRO of Greensburg understands how important it is to have your home and lives back to normal. If fire restoration services are needed, please call us at (724-837-8830).
What Causes Ice Dams and How Can You Prevent Them?
Ice dams– literal dams made of ice – usually form at the eaves and gutters and prevent snow/ice from melting and leaving the roof.
Primary cause is a Temperature Imbalance in the Attic:
Poor attic insulation– Insufficient or deteriorated attic insulation can allow warm air to move from the heated areas of the house to the attic space.
Lack of proper attic ventilation – Properly balanced attic ventilation helps slow snow melting by allowing cold air to enter the attic space, in turn driving out the warmer air. This reduction in warm attic air helps decrease the chance of snow melting on the roof.
Problems Caused by Dams
Because the water from melting snow cannot drain from the surface of the roof, water may leak into the home. These leaks can cause several problems:
- Damage to ceilings, walls, insulation, and other surfaces
- Mold and mildew growth
- Roof damage
The first step to repairing damage from a dam that forms after a winter storm
Dry out walls, ceiling and other interior surfaces affected by leaks.
SERVPRO Of Greensburg,can assist you with this process. Your homeowners' policy may include ice dam coverage that will compensate you for the cost of repairs.
Here are 3 steps you can take to prevent ice damming:
Remove snow from the roof
WINTER IS ON IT'S WAY! SERVPRO OF GREENSBURG Offers Tips To Prevent Frozen/Burst Pipes.
It is time for SERVPRO of Greensburg to once again remind homeowners and renters to be aware of the potential for frozen pipes. Every winter season, the pipes in your business and home are at risk of damage from freezing conditions. Low temperatures can cause your water pipes to freeze, and in some cases burst. The following tips can help you safeguard your home before, during and after a pipe freezes.
PREVENT YOUR PIPES FROM FREEZING
- Disconnect all gardening hoses and install covers on all outside faucets.
- Keep your house temperature at 68 degrees or higher, even if you're leaving the house for an extended period of time.
- Open cabinet doors below sinks to allow heat from the home to circulate.
- Identify the location of the main water valve and the valve on your water heater. (Learning the location of these valves may come in handy during an emergency.:
- Wrap pipes nearest exterior walls and in crawl spaces with pipe insulation or with heating tape. This can prevent freezing, especially for interior pipes that run along outside walls.
- Close all windows near water pipes; cover or close open-air vents. Freezing temperatures combined with wind drafts can cause pipes to freeze more frequently.
- Heat your basement and consider weather sealing your windows.
- Insulate outside walls and unheated areas of your home.
- If you plan to be away from home for an extended period of time, shut off water supply valves to your washing machine. Also have someone checking your home daily.
IF YOUR PIPES UNFORTUNATELY FREEZE AND BURST, CALL SERVPRO OF GREENSBURG TO HELP ASSIST YOU IN YOUR HOME OR BUSINESS at 724-837-8830.