Recent Fire Damage Posts

Residential Fire - Stay Safe by Regularly Testing Fire Alarms

9/17/2020 (Permalink)

Testing a smoke alarm Test your smoke alarm monthly

Inspecting and Checking Your Fire Alarm

A smoke alarm is the first line of defense against a fire in your Moreno Valley, CA. They are designed to alert everyone in the home of fire and smoke to help them get out safely, but they can only do their job if they are properly maintained. In everyday life, it can be easy to forget about the vital device installed in various parts of your home. Instead of risking the safety of everyone and needing fire damage and restoration specialist to salvage your home, make inspecting them and checking them a priority.

Fire Alarm Maintenance
Most people have either an ionization and photoelectric smoke alarm, or a dual one that provides both functions. Unless they are hardwired, these kinds require a 9V battery to operate. Below are recommendations to help maintain their upkeep.

Test all kinds of alarms monthly.
Replace alkaline batteries twice a year. A good rule of thumb is to change them on daylight saving time days.
Lithium-powered alarms should not be replaced. Instead, replace the smoke alarm every 10 years.
Replace backup batteries in hardwired systems once a year.
Replace hardwired alarms every 10 years.

Which Is Better, Alkaline, or Lithium?
Since a smoke detector is vital for safety, you want to ensure you are adhering to manufacture guidelines. If going with a lithium 9V system, they do provide a longer-lasting battery life, but they require an alarm designed to handle that type of battery. They maintain their high voltage for longer, so they may have a shorter low-battery warning timeframe. Alkaline batteries have been the staple for years, but they do require regular replacement and monitoring. As long as regular tests are done and guidelines are followed, both are designed to help keep you and your family safe.
Although it might be easy to assume the smoke alarm will work, taking preventive measures can ensure they do. Make regular testing a priority to be ready if a fire breaks out.

What Does Business Interruption Insurance Cover?

7/2/2020 (Permalink)

Financial concept meaning Business Interruption Insurance with sign on the piece of paper. There are many incidents that could lead to business interruption

A fire in your commercial building in Beaumont, CA, can cause extensive damage. You may not even be able to continue business as usual until the damage is repaired. When this happens, it's useful to have business interruption insurance to cover the costs to keep you on your feet.

Operating Expenses

Entrepreneurs know how to be flexible and adapt to new circumstances. No matter how seamlessly you change your business model to accommodate for the temporary loss of your facilities after a business fire, however, it is likely that you won't see as much cash flow as you're used to. Unfortunately, the costs associated with operation don't go away:

  • Payroll
  • Taxes
  • Loan payments
  • Monthly bills
  • Temporary location

Your interruption policy can help cover these costs. Talk to your provider about the specific exemptions for your particular policy.

Lost Income
Business interruption insurance may also cover the income you lose while fire cleaning experts are working on your building. The amount your policy covers depends on a combination of previous and projected earnings. Using recent profit and loss statements, your provider estimates how much you would have earned if you were able to operate your business as usual during the down time. The policy is designed to protect that income so that you don't get behind or have to shut down completely.

Government Shutdown
If a pandemic or some other widespread disaster happens, the government may decide that all non-essential businesses must close for a certain period of time. During these events, your interruption policy should cover the same things it would cover if your building was damaged or destroyed. A shutdown that is out of your control doesn't have to put your business in jeopardy if you have the right insurance coverage.
There are many incidents that could lead to business interruption. It just makes sense to have a policy in place to cover the money you lose because of it.

How To Keep Your Pets Safe During a House Fire

6/9/2020 (Permalink)

Pomeranian dressed as fire fighter When you make your escape strategy, do not forget about your furry friends

Take The Steps Below To Keep Your Pet Safe

You have probably prepared your family for a fire emergency. Your children likely know how to escape a burning home. Pets, however, usually do not understand what to do during a blaze. You should thus take the below steps to keep them safe.

1. Include Pets in Your Fire Escape Plan
When you make your escape strategy, do not forget about your furry friends. Practice bringing your dog or cat with you as you leave the burning home. As part of your pet preparation plan, you should also keep a separate supply kit that includes the animal's food and other essentials.

2. Keep Your Pets in Easily Accessible Areas
Of course, a fire emergency can also occur when your pet is home alone. If this happens, rescuers will try to save any trapped animals in your Downtown Riverside, CA, house. To make the firefighters' job easier, keep your pets near an entrance when they are home by themselves. You may want to keep their leashes in an easily accessible location, as well.

3. Ensure Firefighters Know How Many Pets You Have
Firefighters also need to know exactly how many pets may be inside. You may not have time to tell the firefighters this key information when they arrive at the house.
You should thus put up a piece of static cling in your front window that states how many pets you have. Update the list every time you get a new pet.

4. Make Sure Your Pets Have a Place To Stay
You and your family may have to temporarily move into a hotel while fire restoration professionals clean up your damaged home. Call in advance to find out which hotels in your area allow pets.
You should consider pet safety when making your fire preparation strategy. While you should not risk your life to rescue your dog or cat during a fire emergency, you can increase the pet's chances of survival by planning ahead.

Filing an Insurance Claim After a Home Fire

2/24/2020 (Permalink)

Home Destroyed By Fire With Caved In Roof Vacant home fire in Calimesa, CA

A home fire can be a very upsetting ordeal. Fortunately, homeowners' insurance will cover many fire losses.

What Homeowners Insurance Does Not Cover

There are a few instances where most homeowners insurance will not cover fire damage, including the following:

  • Arson
  • Wildfire
  • Vacant home fire

In addition to the above exclusions, insurance policies have coverage limits. This means that they will not pay for damages above a certain amount. It is important to talk to your insurance agent to make sure you have adequate homeowners' coverage and determine whether you need an additional policy, such as vacant home insurance.

How To File a Claim

After the home fire has been extinguished and all family members are safe, it is time to call the insurance company. The agent will let you know what information you will need to submit. Take detailed photo or video evidence, and make a list of all items that will need to be repaired or replaced. If you have original receipts or a record of how much the items cost, include this information. Additionally, keep detailed records of all the expenses you incur, including those for repairs and temporary housing. Finally, do not let the insurance company close out the claim until you are sure all the damage has been discovered and documented. Often, homeowners find damage later on that they were unaware of when initially filing the claim. The insurance company is not obligated to cover damage discovered after the claim has been closed.
After you have filed an insurance claim, it is time to begin repairing your property. It is important to act quickly because water from the extinguishing efforts can begin to grow mold, and smoke and soot can cause permanent damage if left for too long. You may wish to hire an experienced restoration team to help you get your Calimesa, CA, property back to normal after a home fire.

Smoke and soot

11/19/2019 (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 North Riverside City 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 – (951)977-5294