Fireplace Safety Tips
Did you know that the leading cause of accidental fires in American homes comes from fuel burning appliances? According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, solid fuel burning appliances account for 5 to 10 percent of all household fires, and cause major damage for homeowners. The main causes of fire include: inadequate clearance between the wood burner and walls, floors and furniture; creosote buildup in the chimney; poorly or improperly installed chimneys and improper installation of the wood burner itself. These wood burning and fireplace safety tips can help keep you and your family safe this winter.
Fireplace Safety Tips
- Read the instructions for your wood burning stove and follow them carefully
- Do not use flammable or combustible liquid (gasoline, kerosene, lighter fluid, etc.) to start a fire
- Do not burn plastics, wood or garbage that has been painted or treated with chemicals. These materials can create toxic gases and can cause corrosion in the vent, chimney and heater
- Burn wood recommended by the manufacturer only
- Put ashes in a metal container with a metal lid. Then place this container onto a concrete surface away from combustible materials outside. These embers may still be hot for several days, so always dispose of them with caution
- Place both smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors on every level of your home, and test these units regularly.
- Place a multi-purpose fire extinguisher near your wood burner. The extinguisher should be UL listed or Factory Manual (FM) approved and have a rating of 2A-10B: C at minimum
- Inspect the firebrick liner in your stove, if you have one. Should the liner show signs of wear, replace it immediately and do not use the unit until the liner is replaced
- Never close your damper with hot ashes in the fireplace. A closed damper will allow the fire to heat up which will, in turn, force toxic carbon monoxide into your house.
- Solid fuel units tend to require a lot more maintenance than other heating systems. Therefore, regular inspections and care are needed to protect your home and family against fire and carbon monoxide poisoning
Water Damage From Dishwashers
How long before dishwasher water damage occurs?
Dishwasher water damage can occur within just a couple of hours. You get home, turn on the dishwasher, walk away and watch TV for a while, or run a few errands, only to come home and find a pool of water on the kitchen floor. The first reaction should be to soak up as much of the water as you can, because the longer it sits there, the more likely it will cause permanent damage.
Some flooring materials are more susceptible to dishwasher water damage than others, such as wood or bamboo. Wood will absorb water quickly, causing your flooring to warp and crack. Make sure to effectively dry out the area ASAP so you can avoid as much damage as possible.
Dishwasher water damage and what to expect
If you’ve never experienced dishwasher leaks or water damage before, you might not even know what you’re in for. Here’s what to expect when you’re dealing with water damage from dishwashers, including the common causes of leaks as well as what elements of your kitchen are most vulnerable after a leak.
What would cause a dishwasher to leak?
Common causes of dishwasher leaks include:
- Worn gaskets
- Dishwasher not level
- Wrong dishwashing soap used
- Broken door
- Defective dishwasher tub
Your dishwasher leak can cause water damage in a variety of ways to a variety of different elements of your kitchen. The below are all susceptible to damage after a dishwasher leak:
- Tile flooring
- Wood flooring
- Laminate flooring
- Electrical wiring
Clean Homes Sell Easier
If you are a home owner, there may come a point when you wish to sell your property, and this may be affected if your home is experiencing a loss of any sort. The services SERVPRO offers can increase the market value of your home by clearing up any kind of loss including everything from odor removal and smoke/soot stains to water and mold damage. Even improving operating efficiency if systems need updating, also moderate procedures such as HVAC and duct cleaning to keep your home in top shape and value. Trust us with your remediation and restoration needs, we are always happy to uphold our amazing standard of service to our clients whether it be water, fire, storms or mold, SERVPRO will be there.
Leakproof Your Home
Now that fall is officially here, it is time to prepare your home and/or business for cold and rainy weather. But keeping water out of your property can be quite complicated. For example; plumbing issues can cause moisture and even light rain can cause leaks through the roof, walls, foundation etc. When this occurs the moisture eventually reaches the porous materials in your home, which may then lead to structural damage and other humidity concerns. It is important to note that if left untreated you also run the risk of mold growth. For these reasons it is highly recommended that you take proper care of any and all potential areas prone to leaks such as the following;
- Inspection of the plumbing pipe(s) system
- Inspection of the roof/chimney
- Inspection of the water heater
- Check attic insulation
- Clean the gutters
- Repair any cracks
- Seal proof doors and windows
- Check exterior faucets and irrigation system
After all, “An ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure”. However, in the event that you encounter any leaks or flooding occurs, please contact SERVPRO of Hollywood Hills. We specialize in helping property owners recover from water damage and make it "Like it never even happened."
Unexpected Storms Causing Water Damage
In areas that storms don't occur often, an unexpected storm can do more damage than expected. In Southern CA storms are not common place, meaning the population is often not prepared for that type of disaster. While CA building codes are prepared to handle disasters such as earthquakes, storms and flooding are not considered as much meaning damage that comes from flooding and high winds can be much more disastrous. SERVPRO helps by helping our clients create a storm readiness program free of charge for those who wish to be prepared for anything. Realize that almost anything can happen anywhere, so essentially being safe is better than being sorry. If you don't know how to prepare for disaster, contact SERVPRO of Hollywood Hills and we would be happy to help!
SERVPRO Cares About You
Here at SERVPRO of Hollywood Hills we care about our clients and your home or businesses well being. We care about our clients and treat you like family. Unlike other businesses here at SERVPRO we aren't just experts in our craft, we enjoy it and look forward to cleaning your disaster up. SERVPRO is not afraid of any emergency situation and won't back down from a job whether big or small. We are prepared to take on Large Floods or Fire Damage to ensure we can make your home or business "Like it never even happened." We ensure that your home or business will be repaired back to your liking. If you have an emergency please call SERVPRO of Hollywood Hills at (323) 803-3574.
How We Do What We Do
As a customer your may wonder, how does SERVPRO have the ability to service almost any kind or any size of restoration losses? The answer is simple, we are the largest restoration company with years of experience and we are certified in the most contemporary techniques that we use to properly restore any kind of loss. We also use the most up to date and advanced equipment so we can ensure the job is done quickly and efficiently. These things in combination allow us to provide the excellent service we always have, and ever improve upon it. If you have any questions about the aforementioned techniques or equipment, or have a loss of any kind, don’t hesitate to give us a call! Our information is on the web page above.
While SERVPRO is very proud of the work that we do with our individual clients we are just as proud of the work we do with the many companies that require our services and trust us for their every restoration need. A great example of the kind of work we do repeatedly with different companies is our continued relationship with Sunrise Senior Living homes. From our experience quite a bit of problems that require remediation unfortunately, but fortunately they have a great relationship with the biggest restoration company in America, SERVPRO! If you are curious how the process works, a business or company simply contact SERVPRO and let us know that you would like us to take care of your current and future restoration needs.
Fire Damage Differences
Fire damage is almost always devastating, regardless of size and damage. An important thing to know though is the type of fire damage you may have endured. SERVPRO is always here to help in any way we can, even if it's just to educate the community. If you take a good look at the picture here from a past job you can see that this home suffered a major loss due to a house fire. There's damage from smoke, soot, and ash on the walls leaving a black layer and a strong odor. There's regular physical damage that fire tends to cause when something is directly touched or set on fire. Something many people may not realize though is the water damage that comes with a fire. Anytime the fire department is called to battle a fire you can count on water damage from the fire hoses. If the home is left long enough with the water soaking into the furniture, carpets, flooring and everything else in the home, mold can form. If your home suffers a loss from a fire, don't wait! Call SERVPRO of Hollywood Hills/Los Feliz to come and get the job done.
Avoiding Data Loss
If a business you’re responsible for relies on backing up large amounts of electronic information, you’ll probably want to make sure there’s a way to preserve it in the case of an accident. To be more specific, you’ll want to have a contingency plan set up to deal with the possibility of fire damage. A fire in the server room can do more than simply damage infrastructure. It can also set a business back months while you replace ruined equipment, and—perhaps worst of all—it can obliterate large quantities of data that the company needs on a daily basis. Data could include everything from financial records to client databases, so you should only ignore the risk of fir eat the peril of losing some very important assets. If you’re a contractor working on behalf of one of these businesses, it also represents a significant challenge.
That said, there are a few things you can do to help avoid irreparable data loss in the event of a fire. From preventative measures to restorative treatments, here are a few ideas to help you soldier on when the sparks literally start flying:
Protect your data using cloud based backups
If you’re worried about losing data when physical servers and computers are threatened, there’s one simple solution: house it somewhere else (or at least house a copy there). Using a cloud based backup lets you store an extra version of your most important information using servers that you won’t be responsible for. Since many of the largest cloud based backup solutions (like Backblaze and Crashplan) take special care to preserve their users’ info, it’s a pretty safe bet that nothing will happen to your stash once you entrust it to them for safekeeping. Of course, this won’t save your equipment or facilities themselves, but it’s better than nothing.
In the unfortunate event that damage occurs to your servers and you haven’t stored backups of your information elsewhere, electronic restoration might be the only effective route to take. Many highly sensitive technologies can be restored—at least to some extent—including computers, telecommunications technology, manufacturing machinery and medical instruments. By removing corrosion and deposits, it’s often very possible to get these units working like new again for as little as 10-30% of the cost of replacing them entirely. Once a skilled technician removes contaminants such as soot, dust, and deposits from chemical vapors, he should be able to take the equipment apart, clean the individual pieces, reassemble them, adjust the machinery and return it to service.
Proactive planning for fire (and water) disasters
Of course, one of the best ways to deal with damage is to avoid it completely. You can save yourself from the inconvenience of having to restore your equipment by making sure it’s not an easy place for a fire to start or a flood to break out. Avoid storing flammable materials near sensitive equipment, and make sure electronics aren’t stored under your sprinkler system or near water pipes. It’s also a good idea to have maintenance briefed on the nature of the technology in the area so that they use safe and appropriate methods when cleaning or tidying up around it.
Finally, you want to make you have cover if a disaster does happen to strike. Restoring your electronics can save them, but it can also be time-consuming—and you want to make sure you can afford the downtime. That’s why having comprehensive fire and accident insurance is key to keeping you in business when the unexpected occurs. Make sure you understand your policy and keep an up to date copy with you always, just in case.