Kitchen Fires: How a Restoration Service Can Help Salvage Your Home
Kitchen fires can be devastating to homes.
Kitchen fires are terrifying experiences that can cause significant damage to your home. In the unfortunate event of a kitchen fire, it's crucial to know what to do to minimize the damage. In this blog post, we will provide you with an overview of what to do if you have a kitchen fire, from our team of restoration experts in Columbia, SC.
Ensure Safety First
The priority during a kitchen fire is the safety of everyone in the house. Ensure that all family members and pets are evacuated to a safe location. Close the kitchen door to contain the fire as much as possible and use a fire extinguisher if it's safe to do so. Do not attempt to put out a grease fire with water, as it can exacerbate the situation.
As soon as you safely can, dial 911 to report the fire. The fire department will arrive to extinguish the flames and prevent the fire from spreading further.
Contact a Restoration Service
After the fire is extinguished and the area is deemed safe, it's essential to contact a professional restoration service immediately. We specialize in mitigating the damage caused by fires and can start the restoration process immediately.
Assess the Damage
Upon arrival, we will conduct a thorough assessment of the damage. We will evaluate the structural integrity of your home, the extent of the fire, and any water damage caused by firefighting efforts.
Board-Up and Tarp Services
In some cases, the fire may compromise the integrity of windows, doors, and the roof. We will provide board-up and tarp services to secure your home and prevent further damage from the elements, such as rain and wind.
Smoke and Soot Cleanup
One of the major challenges after a kitchen fire is dealing with smoke and soot. Our experts use specialized equipment and techniques to clean and remove smoke and soot residue from walls, ceilings, and surfaces.
Water Damage Mitigation
Water damage is often a consequence of firefighting efforts. Our team will assess and mitigate this damage to prevent mold growth and structural deterioration. By using industrial-grade drying equipment to remove moisture we can restore the affected areas.
We will repair and restore any structural damage caused by the fire. This may include rebuilding damaged walls, replacing flooring, and repairing the roof.
Kitchen fires often leave behind persistent odors that can be challenging to eliminate. Our experts have the tools and knowledge to effectively remove these odors, leaving your home smelling clean and fresh.
Your personal belongings, such as furniture, appliances, and personal items, may have also been damaged during the fire. Our contents team can assess and restore salvageable items, helping you recover sentimental and valuable possessions.
Communicate with Your Insurance Company
Your restoration service can work closely with your insurance company to expedite the claims process and ensure that you receive the coverage you are entitled to.
Experiencing a kitchen fire can be a traumatic event, but knowing what to do in the aftermath is crucial to restoring your home and your peace of mind. Our expertise and timely response can make a significant difference in salvaging your home and getting your life back on track. If you ever find yourself facing a kitchen fire, remember that our team of restoration professionals are there to support you and guide you through the restoration process.
Take Immediate action after Storm Damage
24/7 Storm Damage Restoration
Quick response is important when facing flood and storm damage of any size. Immediate action is almost always necessity.
SERVPRO of Richland County is highly trained to respond immediately with advanced equipment and proven techniques that remove water quickly and minimize the potential of unnecessary damage. Because we are faster to any size disaster, we’re aware that water damage comes in all shapes and sizes and may require individual solutions. We have streamlined the process for you.
Because the Columbia SC residents and businesses are our #1 priority, we’ve created this quick and easy checklist as your go-to resource for all things storm & water damage.
Your safety is of our utmost concern. Upon the onset of water damage, please assess the following questions:
- Is it safe to stay in the house?
- Are there electrical or hazards that could cause someone to slip and fall?
- If a movable material has become wet, it is likely heavier than normal. If so, do not move it or be sure to exercise caution when lifting.
Contact & Communication
Call SERVPRO of Richland County immediately so that we can walk you through important questions that will allow us to help you efficiently and with quick response. The quicker you call us, the quicker we can provide cleanup and restoration "Like it never even happened."
Inspection and Assessment
Our team will thoroughly inspect the extent and type of water damage. This step is critical in creating a solid and effective action plan. In addition, we will begin the removal of water using our pumps and vacuums so that no further damage occurs and in order to prevent mold.
Drying and Dehumidification
Once the majority of water has been removed, we will use specially designed equipment to extract the water that is more difficult to reach and absorb. This equipment applies a scientific drying approach which includes air movers and dehumidifiers.
Cleaning and Sanitizing
If the water damage has affected your personal property including clothing, furniture or more, we are able to clean the items with specially designed cleaning methods. After cleaning your items, we sanitize them with an antimicrobial treatment and remove odors with industrial air scrubbers and fogging equipment.
This is the last step in returning your property to the condition "Like it never even happened." This step completes the process by replacing and rebuilding the affected areas.
We’re ready to help you 24/7. Call us anytime at (803) 419-0470. We're ready to take your call.
What happens if a storm floods your property?
We can help with flood damage.
At SERVPRO of Richland County, we understand that both storm damage and flood damage can be overwhelming. Immediate response is critical, and the emergency service that you choose for cleanup and restoration is vital to returning your property to the condition "Like it never even happened." SERVPRO professionals respond faster to any disaster and have the skilled training and specialized equipment to provide an effective and efficient action plan.
Where to Start with Storm Damage
Knowing what to do at the onset of flood damage is critical to receiving immediate response. Your immediate steps will help determine your property’s further protection and reduce the potential for irreversible damage.
If you’re wondering where to begin, follow this checklist for your steps of immediate action.
- Turn off electrical power and any natural gas sources including propane tanks. If you smell gas or feel that there may be a gas leak, turn off the main gas valve, open all windows, leave the property immediately, and call your gas company.
- Call 911. Report the flood damage to the fire and public safety authorities in addition to the local gas company.
- Contact an emergency service for cleanup and restoration. The professionals you choose matter. The quicker you call SERVPRO of Richland County, the quicker we can respond. Our professionals will arrive armed with specialized equipment ranging from an infrared camera to uncover hidden moisture to robust water extraction equipment that quickens the drying process.
- Relocate important documents. Water can destroy sensitive documents. Only if you can do so safely, move your important documents as quickly as possible to a safe and dry location. If you need assistance, SERVPRO can ensure that your documents and personal belongings are secure.
- Remain evacuated from the damaged area. To remain safe from potential hazards and to help expedite restoration efforts, we recommend that you and others stay out of the damaged and restoration areas. Upon being given the all-clear to return, adhere to the advice of your trusted professionals about how to return safely.
When a storm strikes and floodwaters rise, other emergency response companies may be overrun. SERVPRO of Richland County can has the local and national resources to address any size situation.
We stand ready 24/7 to respond to your emergency, so please don’t hesitate. Call us today.
Why choose SERVPRO of Richland County for your cleanup and restoration?
SERVPRO Richland County work van at facility.
Why should you choose SERVPRO of Richland County for your cleanup, mitigation, and restoration? We could go on and on about how we’re the best choice for you. However, we’ll let people just like you- perhaps even your neighbor- speak for themselves about their own unique situation.
"I can't say enough good things about these people. They stand behind their work and do what they say they will do. Ask yourself: How many people can you say that about?"
"SERVPRO of Richland County is AMAZING!!. We had a water leak with some pretty extensive damage. The crew came in and removed all damaged materials. They dried out our house, leaving it ready for repair. They were professional, quick and always on time. A very knowledgeable crew, to add Troy and Peter provided outstanding support. I highly recommend this company..."
"Responded almost immediately, kept me in the loop throughout the whole process, worked all through the night to make sure we could conduct business as usual the next day. Definitely would recommend their services."
"We are so grateful for the opportunity to support local small business and SERVPRO did not disappoint. They were so nice and helpful when scheduling. They were running ahead of schedule the day of service and made sure to call ahead. We have almost 20 year old tile that needed freshening up and it looks practically new again! They even cleaned our fiberglass tub in the bathroom that was not included as part of the “tile and grout” cleaning. My only regret is that we didn’t call sooner to get this done. We are so pleased and would recommend to anyone!"
We had a broken pipe leak underneath our crawl space of our home. We call SERVPRO and Joey Corley, Crew Chief responded to our home within 2hr. Very professional hook a sump pump to get rid of water and after that he used these fans to dry out the crawl space. My husband and I was definitely appreciative of the quality work that was done"
How can we assure that you will be satisfied with choosing SERVPRO of Richalnd County?
We set the bar high by ensuring our professionals have completed extensive training and certifications including meeting the industry standard with The Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC), SERVPRO employee and franchise training, continuing education courses on emergency mitigation, and more.
You can rest assured that our staff is equipped with the latest training and proven methods to restore your property as quickly and efficiently as possible.
Does your Business have a Disaster Plan?
Business team in Columbia SC preparing a disaster plan.
If you own a business in Richland County, developing a disaster plan is a vital part of making sure you are covered in case an emergency were to arise. Having a written plan in place will help your employees stay safe in an emergency situation, keep everyone informed, and help you reopen your business quickly. There are a few key elements that can help you be certain that you are fully prepared.
Path for Building Evacuation & Staying Put
Depending on the type of disaster you are facing, it may be necessary to evacuate while other disasters may necessitate staying in place. To be fully prepared for whatever situation your business faces, it is important to have a procedure in place regarding both of these things.
Make sure that you have well-marked evacuation routes in the building in case employees must leave suddenly in the event of a fire or flood, and practice evacuation drills frequently so everyone knows what to do. In the event that you must stay put, pack an office emergency kit with enough food, water and medical supplies to sustain you and your staff until official help arrives.
Effective Communication Strategy for Employees and Management
In the event of a disaster or emergency, there will likely be a lot of confusion from staff regarding what this means for the business and their livelihoods. Making sure that you and upper management have a strategy for communicating with staff will help you (most importantly) ensure everyone is safe, communicate pertinent information and keep any rumors at bay.
Outline of the Recovery Process
For business owners, stakeholders, and management, your livelihood is likely on the line if your business or organization has an unexpected closure. It’s recommended that you have a recovery plan in place in advance so you can expedite your time to reopening.
Make sure you are aware of how to start recovery, including knowing your insurance information, and preferred commercial restoration company that you will be using to mitigate damage, restore your property, and get your business reopened as quickly as possible.
If your business has experienced a disaster, you can count on our restoration services. Contact SERVPRO of Richland County at (803) 419-0470 to learn more about our commercial restoration process.
Why Property Managers choose SERVPRO for Emergencies
Apartment Building in Columbia SC
As the go-between for tenants and property owners, property managers have to juggle many responsibilities -- finding new tenants, fielding questions, dealing with complaints, performing inspections, overseeing landscaping, maintenance repairs, securing property, and ensuring the building’s good appearance.
When it comes to handling fire, water and contamination cleanup emergencies, property managers have a secret weapon that’s just a phone call away: SERVPRO’s Disaster Recovery Team.
We get it. There’s never a convenient time to clean up from fire damage, water damage or a biohazard contaminant. Every minute spent cleaning and restoring a business or property results in lost time, revenue and productivity.
When a disaster or emergency strike, our commercial services team is ready to respond -- 24 hours a day and seven days a week -- regardless of a commercial property’s size or scope of the damage.
Wether it’s retail to residential and manufacturing to motels, SERVPRO’s commercial services team helps make it “Like it never even happened,” so property managers can focus on their other roles.
- If a massive storm floods a mom-and-pop ice cream shop, we’ll respond immediately to tackle initial storm cleanup and damage mitigation and rebuild the affected areas.
- If there’s a funky smell coming from somewhere in a 10,000-square-foot manufacturing plant, we’ll locate the source of the offensive odor and eliminate it.
- If a fire sprinkler system fails during the grand opening weekend of a retail boutique, we’ll clean the property and manage the restoration process - from start to finish.
- If an electrical fire breaks out in the middle of the night at a restaurant dining room, we’ll restore it to pre-fire condition -- from fire and smoke damage to odor control and upholstery and fabric cleaning.
- If a husband and wife test positive for COVID-19 just two days after vacating their high-rise apartment, we’ll get it Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned in no time so it’s ready for the next tenant.
- If an older apartment building has mold infestation from a slow roof leak, we’ll prevent it from spreading to other parts of the building and remove it through our commercial mold remediation process.
For more information on how we can help your commercial property call us at (803) 419-0470.
We're available 24/7 and are here to help you in Columbia SC.
The Do's and Don'ts of Grilling this Summer - Prevent a House Fire
Man grilling at his home in Columbia SC
Homeowners in the Columbia SC and the greater Richland area love to grill, but there are many dangers that come with all the outdoor fun.
According to the National Fire Protection Association, fire departments went to an annual average of 8,900 home fires involving grills, hibachis or barbecues per year.
Here are a few ways to stay safe and prevent house fires while grilling:
1. Keep your grill at least 10 feet away from your house. Farther is even better. This includes portions attached to your house like carports, garages and porches. Grills should not be used underneath wooden overhangs either, as the fire could flare up into the structure above. This applies to both charcoal and gas grills.
2. Clean your grill regularly. If you allow grease and fat to build up on your grill, they provide more fuel for a fire. Grease is a major source of flare ups.
3. Check for gas leaks. You can make sure no gas is leaking from your gas grill by making a solution of half liquid dish soap and half water and rubbing it on the hoses and connections. Then, turn the gas on (with the grill lid open.) If the soap forms large bubbles, that's a sign that the hoses have tiny holes or that the connections are not tight enough.
4. Keep decorations away from your grill. Decorations like hanging baskets, pillows and umbrellas look pretty, but can provide fuel for a fire. To make matters worse, today's decor is mostly made of artificial fibers that burn fast and hot, making this tip even more important.
5. Keep a spray bottle of water handy. That way, if you have a minor flare-up you can spray it with the water to instantly calm it. The bonus of this tip is that water won't harm your food, so dinner won't be ruined!
6. Keep a fire extinguisher within a couple steps of your grill. And KNOW HOW TO USE IT. If you are unsure how to use the extinguisher, don't waste time fiddling with it before calling 911. Firefighters say many fire deaths occur when people try to fight a fire themselves instead of calling for expert help and letting the fire department do its job.
7. Turn on the gas while your grill lid is closed. NEVER do this. It causes gas to build up inside your grill, and when you do light it and open it, a fireball can explode in your face.
8. Leave a grill unattended. Fires double in size every minute. Plan ahead so that all of your other food prep chores are done and you can focus on grilling.
9. Overload your grill with food. This applies especially fatty meats. The basic reason for this tip is that if too much fat drips on the flames at once, it can cause a large flare-up that could light nearby things on fire.
10. Use a grill indoors. People often think it will be safe to use a grill, especially a small one, indoors. NOT TRUE. In addition to the fire hazard, grills release carbon monoxide, the deadly colorless, odorless gas. That gas needs to vent in fresh air or it can kill you, your family and pets.
In case the you experience a house fire, call your local fire department immediately. Be sure to contact a licensed fire damage restoration company to cleanup and repair any damage to your home occurs.
Water Problems? Is it Black, Grey, or Clean?
Flooded conference room in Columbia SC
When it comes to cleanup and disinfection of commercial spaces, it’s best to call certified water damage restoration experts. The SERVPRO of Richland County team is trained to handle contaminated water emergencies properly and works 24/7 to help our customers get their property back to business.
It’s essential for business owners and property managers to know the different types of contaminated water. You can easily smell or see contaminates in some cases, but water can smell and look perfectly fine, but still be harmful.
Clean, gray and black water: What’s the difference?
Water damage can be classified by three types of contaminated water: clean, gray and black.
Clean water is free from viruses, bacterias and comes from a source like a broken water supply line or leaking faucet. If not treated quickly, clean water can turn into gray or black water, depending on the length of time, temperature and contact with surrounding contaminants.
Gray water, or wastewater, hasn’t come into contact with solid human waste but is still considered contaminated. It also may contain bacteria and viruses that cause discomfort or illness. Gray water drains and flows from places such as showers, sinks and baths. It also comes from overflowing washing machines, dishwashers and toilets with urine but no feces.
If done correctly, gray water can be filtered and reused for gardens and lawns; however, it also can quickly degrade if left untreated.
Black water is highly contaminated and contains harsh chemicals and human waste filled with harmful bacteria and disease-causing pathogens. You should avoid contact with black water as it can cause severe illness or death if ingested. Water is considered black when it comes from a toilet bowl with feces or sewer back-up. It’s also generated from overflowing streams or rivers mixed with sewer water and standing water with microbial growth.
Sewage cleanup and commercial water restoration
Any water contaminated with sewage backup should be considered an emergency and addressed as quickly as possible. The water may contain viruses, bacteria and other microbes that cause serious illnesses. And if black water isn’t removed promptly, it can rot, dry out and lead to airborne contamination.
SERVPRO professionals are specially trained and have the equipment and protective gear to safely restore your business. Our water damage restoration specialists will inspect your business to determine the appropriate plan of action for the type of water encountered.
We’re locally owned and operated and part of the Columbia and grater Richland County communities. Our damage restoration technicians are employees, not contractors. They can respond to sewage cleanup and water damage emergencies with the most advanced cleaning equipment, products and technology to get you back to business. To learn more, call us anytime at (803) 419-0470.
Minimize Damage during Storm Season
Prepare your Columbia SC Home for potential Storm Damage
The spring and summer Storm season is upon us which can make property owners feel unsettled and vulnerable. As neighbors in your community, we want to help make sure that you’ve done everything possible to protect your home before the storm hits.
So, how can you prepare? To ease any storm’s impact, we’ve compiled our go-to storm preparation recommendations just for you.
Storm Preparation 101:
Follow these tips to help reduce potential storm damage on your property and surrounding areas.
- Secure Your Property. What trees and limbs are hanging over your property? Be sure dead or loose limbs are clear and trees trimmed. Also, look for trees with visibly shallow root systems and make sure nothing is within falling distance should the roots become saturated and the tree uproots.
- Secure Loose Items. What is on your patio or lawn that could be blown by high winds? Make sure that any fences are secured, furniture anchored, and loose items are stored properly.
- Secure Your Home. Is the perimeter of your house secure? Are gutters draining properly? If not, be sure to clean out the debris to ensure proper drainage. Are windows and doors protected? If they appear vulnerable, consider covering them with plywood or installing storm shutters and even heavy-duty hardware.
- Secure Important Items. Are the floors clear of belongings? Make sure loose items, electronic devices, photographs, and more are stored off the floor and not lying on the ground to be exposed to potential water damage. Have drying materials (towels, rags, etc.) on hand, should you need to dry water quickly until help arrives. Also, make sure to have a proper stash of emergency items according to the CDC recommendations: https://www.cdc.gov/disasters/hurricanes/index.html
- Monitor Weather Updates and Have Important Contacts Saved. Who do you have stored in your contacts to call should any damage occur? Important numbers to have stored include friends and family, fire and police departments, health care providers and hospitals, local emergency management offices, utility companies, American Red Cross, and emergency restoration and clean-up service of choice.
The #most important thing to remember is that a fast response will lessen the damage, reduce further damage and minimize costs.
Should any damages occur beyond your control, don’t forget that we’re your neighbors and already in the area. Our team can respond 24/7 to your storm damage restoration needs, call us - the locally owned and operated, certified professionals: SERVPRO of Richland County.
We are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and dedicated to responding immediately. The quicker you call us, the quicker your home can return to normal.
What items should I keep after a house fire?
Know what's safe to keep after a House Fire.
What items should you keep after a fire in your home? Well, you may be surprised that many items should be discarded. But not every fire will require a significant clean-out. Example: small stove top grease fire may do minimal damage to a kitchen, and only require throwing away a frying pan.
However, for more extensive fires that gut whole rooms, consider discarding several types of items due to contamination and spoilage.
Items That Should Be Discarded After a House Fire
- Perishable and Non-Perishable Items
The intense heat of a fire, especially one that engulfs entire rooms or levels, will likely result in the spoilage of several non-perishable and perishable items. For instance, canned goods will probably boil during a fire, making any warranty or expiration invalid. This includes refrigerators that are damaged during a fire. The temperature inside the fridge will likely rise, causing most, if not all, of the food to go bad.
Medications are another item that you should throw away. While they may appear fine, fires produce toxic chemicals that can cling to medications. Therefore, discard any medicines, vitamins, and other pills safely. You can contact your physician to discuss the situation and ask for refills.
As with medications, fire damage can leave toxic residues on various items, including cosmetics. There is no feasible way to clean cosmetics, and therefore, they should be discarded for your safety.
- Porous Items
While the general rule is to discard any porous items, it is understandable that some materials may be more sentimental than others. If you would like to hold on to some of these items, then you can contact a restoration specialist in the Columbia SC area. These professionals may be able to help you find a local specialty cleaner who can salvage certain porous items.
While there are many things that you should throw away after a fire, there are pieces of your home that you will likely be able to take with you. Also, if you can find a certified restoration company, you should be able to salvage even some things that may seem unsalvageable.
Have Questions About Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call SERVPRO of Richland County at (803) 324-5780.