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Fire safety for campfires / pit fires

6/29/2018 (Permalink)

Fire safety is no joke, and that goes for campfires as well. Whether you’re camping in the middle of the woods or lounging around a backyard fire pit, you need to exercise as much caution lighting a fire outside as you would with an indoor fireplace or wood burning stove. Failure to follow fire regulations can result in fines.

According to the National Fire Protection Association, an average of 915 brush, grass and forest fires are reported in the US every day, 10 percent of which occur right outside single-family homes. Don’t let careless use of your fire pit add to this statistic!

Whether your goal is to avoid a fine or prevent a house fire, abide by the following campfire safety tips.

Safe Fire Pit Placement

Build your fire pit at least 10 feet away from any surrounding structures, building overhangs or combustible materials. Also watch out for low-hanging branches and power lines.

Place the fire pit itself on a noncombustible surface, such as concrete, brick or stone pavers. If you want to place a portable fire pit on your wood deck, only use a pedestal-style pit, which is raised up on legs to ensure ample heat ventilation, and place a noncombustible surface below the fire pit for added safety.

Lighting the Fire

Before you strike a match, check the weather forecast. Skip the fire if it’s windy or high winds are in the forecast, as this could blow embers around and potentially start a fire outside the pit. Clear away any leaves, pine needles and twigs around the fire pit to help prevent any stray embers from starting a fire.

To get the fire going, place a crumpled piece of paper in the pit and light it with a match. Place small sticks on top, and when they catch fire, add larger sticks. Never pour lighter fluid or gasoline directly onto the fire to make it grow faster.

Maintaining the Fire

To improve fire safety, keep the blaze small. There’s no reason to light a roaring bonfire, and the bigger the flames, the greater potential for disaster. Cover the pit with a screen to help maintain a smaller fire and prevent sparks from escaping. If you have a gas fire pit, control the height of the flames manually with a keyed gas valve.

Only burn appropriate products such as dry firewood, paper, twigs and kindling. Don’t burn plastics or products with adhesives since these can send plumes of dark, chemically laden smoke into the air.

Putting Out the Fire

Keep a container of water or a garden hose nearby at all times in case the fire gets out of control. Use these products at the end of the night to douse wood burning fire pits. Make sure the ashes are cool before you leave, and cover them with dirt for good measure. Dispose of cooled ashes in a metal container with a sealed lid and store this container on a noncombustible surface in the shed, garage or elsewhere. For gas fire pits, simply turn the knob to shut off the gas at the end of the night.

Additional Safety Tips

  • Check with your local fire department for any restrictions on outdoor fire pits. In some cities, wood burning fireplaces and fit pits are illegal.
  • Never leave a fire unattended.
  • Carefully supervise children and pets around the fire pit and never leave them alone with the fire.
  • Only cook in your fire pit if you’ve installed one specifically designed for this purpose.
  • When not in use, cover the pit to protect it from rainwater, which can destroy porous ceramic components in gas fire pits, including simulated logs.
  • Check gas burners periodically and clean them with a soft brush to remove buildup and help ensure the gas burns cleanly and properly.

Fire Restoration Services

Despite your best efforts, fire pits still have the potential to get out of control. If your home has been damaged by a fire, Call SERVPRO of North Rowan County & Salisbury We’re here to help restore your home and get your life back on track.

Common Causes of Household Fires

6/15/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Common Causes of Household Fires A fire in the home can spread much more quickly than you might expect.

A fire in the home can spread much more quickly than you might expect. Even a small fire can completely engulf a room in just two minutes.

The loss caused by fire damage is vast and irreversible, so it’s worth making yourself aware of the most common causes of fires in the home to reduce the risk of a devastating fire.

Candles

Candles can add a beautiful atmosphere or scent to any room, but improper use can easily cause a fire.

Never leave a candle burning unattended. Keep wicks trimmed to avoid large flames. Ensure that candles are placed on a heat-proof surface well away from walls, curtains or lampshades. Don’t place a candle in a draught as this may blow the flame towards something flammable. Lighters and matches should be kept somewhere safe and out of the reach of children.

Cooking

There are many hazards in the kitchen when it comes to fire. Cooking oil in particular is very dangerous, as it can get incredibly hot and splatter on flammable surfaces.

Never leave the hob or oven unattended while in use, even if it’s just for a minute. If you have a gas hob or oven, always make sure to keep items such as oven gloves or paper towels away from the open flame, and make sure to switch them off after use. Only use as much oil as necessary while cooking and cover frying pans with lids or splatter guards.

Smoking

Hot ash, embers, and cigarettes that have not been properly stubbed out are all capable of starting a fire, particularly in rooms that are full of soft furnishings such as beds, sofas and carpets.

It is safer to smoke outside where a fire is less likely to take hold, but be aware of your surroundings and don’t smoke around flammable substances such as petrol. Always make sure that cigarettes are properly extinguished. Keep lighters and matches away from children.

Electrical equipment

While electrical items that generate heat such as curling tongs are more obvious fire hazards, anything that uses electricity could cause a fire if it is faulty.

Regularly inspect the cables on your electrical items for signs of damage. Never overload plug sockets with multiple adapters. If an item that you are using starts to smoke or feel very hot, stop using it immediately and unplug it. If an item frequently blows fuses or trips the circuit breaker, it is likely faulty and therefore unsafe.

Faulty wiring

Electrical currents carry heat, so wiring can lead to a fire if it is faulty or overloaded. Electrical systems typically have a lifespan of around 40 years, so older houses may need to be rewired.

Common signs that your wiring may be faulty include frequent blown fuses or tripped circuits, lights that dim if you use another appliance, or having to unplug one appliance for another to work. If you’re concerned about the safety of your wiring, get it inspected by a licensed electrician.

Heating

Well maintained heating appliances that are used according to the manufacturer’s guidelines shouldn’t cause a problem, but you must always make sure to look after your appliances.

Get your boiler inspected regularly by a licensed professional to check for and repair any problems. Any electric heaters must be placed at least a metre away from other objects, especially flammable items such as curtains and sofas. Never cover an electric heater or use them to dry wet clothes.

Children

Children can be curious and clumsy, making them a potential liability when it comes to fire.

Always keep matches and lighters out of sight and reach of children, and be sure to warn them of the dangers of playing with fire. Never leave children unattended around naked flames such as candles or gas hobs. Be mindful of any children present while cooking or using open flames.

If you’ve been the victim of a fire in your home, get in touch with SERVPRO of North Rowan County & Salisbury

Summer Safety Tips

6/5/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Summer Safety Tips Summer is here

6/5/2018

The summer season is a time to make memories and enjoy the great outdoors.  Below you will find tips, provided by the National Fire Protection Association.

  • When using a charcoal grill, only use starter fluids designed for grills; do not add fluid after coals have been lit.
  • When using a gas grill, ensure the hose connection is tight; check hoses for leaks.  Apply soapy water to the hoses to easily identify possible leaks.
  • When camping, always use a flame retardant tent and set up camp away from the campfire.  Use flashlights or battery- powered lanterns inside the tent, NOT liquid- filled heaters or lanterns.
  • Always build a campfire down wind from the tent area. Clear vegetation and dig a pit before building a fire.  Always extinguish the fire before going to sleep or leaving the campsite.  To extinguish a campfire, cove with dirt or pour water over the fire.
  • Store liquid fire starter (not gasoline) away from your tent and campfire and only use dry kindling to freshen a campfire.

SERVPRO wishes you a happy and safe summer.

Are you Prepared for a power outage?

6/5/2018 (Permalink)

You may need to survive on your own after an emergency. This means having your own food, water and other supplies in sufficient quantity to last for at least 72 hours. Local officials and relief workers will be on the scene after a disaster but they cannot reach everyone immediately. You could get help in hours or it might take days. Depending on the nature of the disaster road conditions may prevent help from arriving in a timely manner. 

Additionally, basic services such as electricity, gas, water, sewage treatment and telephones may be cut off for days or even a week, or longer. Your supplies kit should contain items to help you manage during these outages.  If the power goes out keep your pipes from freezing by shutting off the valve that allows water to come into your home. Then, open any drain valves and all faucets and let them run until the pipes are empty (it's helpful to identify these valves in advance). Next, flush all toilets and pour denatured alcohol into toilets and sinks to prevent water in the traps from freezing. Do NOT use automotive antifreeze in case there's trouble with your water system; you don't want the antifreeze to contaminate your drinking water. You may, however, use nontoxic antifreeze that's made for winterizing motor homes.

Be prepared for a power outage by keeping necessary items centrally located in your home. Take the time to ensure that everyone in your family is aware of the "kit." Periodically check your kit to see that batteries operate properly. The following is a list of items that are suggested to keep on hand:

1.     Flashlights for each family member

2.     Battery-operated radio and clock

3.     Extra batteries

4.     Containers of bottled water

5.     Canned, freeze-dried or dehydrated food, powdered milk, baby supplies for infants

6.     Non-electric can opener

7.     List of important phone numbers

8.     First-aid kit

Following a disaster, there may be power outages that could last for several days. Stock canned foods, dry mixes and other staples that do not require refrigeration, cooking, water or special preparation. Be sure to include a manual can opener and eating utensils. The following items are suggested when selecting emergency food supplies. You may already have many of these on hand.

•Store at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food.

•Choose foods your family will eat.

•Remember any special dietary needs.

•Avoid foods that will make you thirsty.

•Choose salt-free crackers, whole grain cereals and canned foods with high liquid content.

•Ready-to-eat canned meats, fruits, vegetables and a can opener

•Protein or fruit bars

•Dry cereal or granola

•Peanut butter

•Dried fruit

•Nuts

•Crackers

•Canned juices

•Non-perishable pasteurized milk

•High energy foods

•Vitamins

•Food for infants

•Comfort/stress foods

These and many other helpful tips are available at ready.gov Here is the link to winter tips for before during and after a winter storm http://www.ready.gov/winter-weather When winter weather strikes our area knowing what to do until SERVPRO of North Rowan County/Salisbury  arrives will make a difference.  Call us directly at 704-939-1944

9 Sizzling home safety tips

6/5/2018 (Permalink)

Community 9 Sizzling home safety tips SERVPRO of North Rowan County/Salisbury cares.

The official start to summer is just weeks away. That means it’s time for pool parties and backyard barbeques, but it’s also the season that’s hot for burglaries. In fact, more burglaries occur during the months of July and August than any other month.

Fortunately there are several easy things you can do to make your home less of a target. Below, we’ve listed 9 of them. Follow our summer safety tips, and you’ll be well on your way to enjoying a crime free season.

1. Keep the garage secure.

In addition to storing a variety of goods burglars want, such as lawn equipment, bikes and other easily pawned items, your garages offer easy access to the rest of your home. Keep the garage door locked, and be sure to secure the door that leads from your garage into your home.

During summer you might be tempted to leave the windows of your car rolled down; but that’s a mistake. Burglars won’t hesitate to use the automatic opener sitting on the dashboard to access your garage. If you use an automatic garage door opener, make sure it’s not visible to a criminal peeking in car and be sure to keep the windows rolled up and doors locked.

2. Protect your valuables with a home security system.

Secure your home with an alarm system and there’s a good chance the burglar will choose an easier target. A home security system not only strengths your home’s defense against the bad guys, it can also alert your family to dangers like fire and carbon monoxide. At a minimum your home security system should include monition sensors, and detectors on all doors and window. Exterior cameras will add an extra layer of protection against burglars.

3. Remove window air units.

An air conditioning unit will save you from summer’s stifling temperatures, but it will also make your home vulnerable. Use a dowel to secure the window while the unit is in place, and be sure to remove the unit when you go on vacation.

4. Ask a neighbor to watch your home.

If you’re going to travel this summer, ask a trusted friend or neighbor to keep an eye on your home. Burglars look for telltale signs that your home is vacant, including flyers and mail left near the front door, overflowing mailboxes and garbage cans left at the curb.

5. Don’t invite crime.

Summertime means kids are riding bikes and scooters, and they have a habit of leaving them lying on the lawn. But when they do, they’re extending an invitation to criminals. A thief will not only take the goodies they find outside, they’ll wonder what treats you have hiding in your home. Even if your child is just running in the house for a snack, caution him to put valuables in a secure place.

6. Don’t hide keys outside.

Homeowners often hide the key to their home under the front door mat, or in another obvious location that burglars are sure to look. Don’t hide your house key outside. Instead, give it to a neighbor or friend in case of an emergency.

7. Keep quiet about your plans.

If you’re looking forward to the vacation of a lifetime, you’ll want to share your excitement with everyone, but that’s a bad move. The guy installing your new dishwasher or the gal cleaning your home could moonlight as a burglar. And you never know who reads those brag posts you put on social media, so just don’t do it. Show off the photos when you’re back home instead.

8. Watch out for scams.

If a stranger approaches your front door, beware. Summer is the time that professional thieves travel the county offering to repave your driveway or re-shingle the roof of your home. While one person is distracting you with a sales pitch, another person is entering your home through the back door.

9. Snip the shrubbery.

The bushes around your home will flourish during summer, giving burglars the go-ahead to break into your home. Trim the overgrown bushes near your home so windows and doors are visible from the street.

We encourage you to follow our summer safety tips and always trust your gut. If you see someone acting suspiciously or their behavior concerns you, there’s probably a good reason why. Don’t hesitate to call the police.

 

SERVPRO of North Rowan County/Salisbury  hopes your summer is a safe and happy one.

Our team of experts are ready

6/1/2018 (Permalink)

By their very definition, disasters cause unprecedented damage that you can never fully prepare for. During these harrowing times it is important to focus on what really matters – your family and loved ones. Fixing your home and business should be the least of your worries.

Our fully trained and licensed restoration specialists are ready to help. They work efficiently and quickly so that you can get your life back. Our team of experts are ready to tackle everything from a flooded basement to a smoke damaged garage. We will restore your building or property as quickly as possible, with efficiency and concern for your well-being and best interests every step of the way.

Ready to get back on your feet? When disasters happen we are ready.  Call

SERVPRO of North Rowan County/Salisbury 

             704-939-1944 

Three types of contaminated water

6/1/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Three types of contaminated water Call SERVPRO of North Rowan County/Salisbury

There are three major types of contaminated water. SERVPRO of North Rowan County/Salisbury will inspect that contaminated water to determine the type of water and then plan the appropriate response to safely restore your home or business.

The three types of contaminated water:

Category 1: "Clean Water"

This is water from a clean source, such as a broken clean water supply line or faucet. If left untreated, category 1 water can quickly degrade into category 2 or 3 water depending upon such factors as time, temperature, and contact with contaminants.

  • Water from a clean source like a broken water line
  • If left untreated, can degrade into category 2 or 3

Category 2: "Gray Water"

This water has a significant level of contamination that could cause discomfort or illness if ingested. Sources for category 2 water may include washing machine overflow; toilet overflow with some urine, but no feces; or dishwasher overflow.

  • May contain bacteria and viruses
  • Can quickly degrade into category 3 if left untreated

Category 3: "Black Water"

This water is grossly unsanitary and could cause severe illness or death if ingested, and any contact should be avoided. Sources for category 3 water could include flooding from rivers or streams, water from beyond the toilet trap, water from the toilet bowl with feces, or standing water that has begun to support microbial growth.

  • May contain untreated sewage, harsh chemicals, and microbes
  • Water from flooding rivers or sewer backup

We are the water damage restoration specialists with specific training and expertise to safely restore your home or business.

24 HOUR EMERGENCY SERVICE

5/31/2018 (Permalink)

General 24 HOUR EMERGENCY SERVICE 24 Hours a day, 7 Days a week.

Flooding and water emergencies don’t wait for regular business hours and neither do we. SERVPRO of North Rowan County / Salisbury Professionals provide emergency water restoration services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week—including all holidays. You can expect an immediate response time, day or night.  SERVPRO of North Rowan County / Salisbury is dedicated to being a fast responder to any-sized disaster in Rowan County. We can respond immediately to your emergency and we have the expertise to handle your restoration or cleaning needs.

  • 24-Hour Emergency Service
  • Faster to Any-Sized Disaster
  • Highly Trained Restoration Technicians
  • A Trusted Leader in the Restoration Industry
  • Locally Owned and Operated
  • Advanced Restoration and Cleaning Equipment 

SERVPRO of North Rowan County / Salisbury

                      Call us Day or Night!

                         704-939-1944

Spring Cleaning

5/31/2018 (Permalink)

Cleaning Spring Cleaning Spring Cleaning

It's that time of year again!

The sun is out and it's time for spring cleaning! Make your life a little easier this year and consider calling North Rowan County / Salisbury

  Grove to help ease the burden. 

How can SERVPRO help?

You know as a leader in Fire and Water Cleanup and Restoration, but our professional residential cleaning services can make a dirty home as good as new.

Carpet & Upholstery Cleaning

Even the highest-quality carpet and upholstery can show soiling over time. Protect your investment by calling us to clean and maintain your carpet and upholstery. The SERVPRO System offers a number of cleaning options to match any type of upholstery or carpet.

Our professional cleaning can address moderate and heavy soil conditions in your carpets. How often you’ll need professional cleaning depends on soil build-up, traffic, type and color of carpeting. A good rule of thumb would be to professionally clean your carpet every 12 months. The best advice is to clean carpets before they become totally saturated with soil. If you wait until carpets look really dirty, the carpets may never be restored to their former appearance. Dirt builds up in layers, and when a carpet looks dirty you are only seeing the dirt at the tips of the fibers. More dirt is hiding below the surface down near the base of the pile, causing damage to the carpet. When a carpet is saturated with dirt, the soil has penetrated crevices and has become firmly lodged.  Life Happens, and homes get dirty.

North Rowan County / Salisbury has the industry experience and expertise to provide a deeper clean than your basic home cleaning service. 

We're here to make things easier for you.

Need cleaning services?

Give us a call today! - 704-939-1944

Dryer Fire Prevention Tips

5/31/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage   Dryer Fire Prevention Tips If you have experienced dryer fire in your home, SERVPRO is here to deal with the fire damage.

Dryer Fire Prevention Tips from your local  SERVPRO North Rowan County / Salisbury

Each year in the United States homeowners suffer from the aftermath of clothes dryer fires. In fact, nearly 15,000 home clothes dryers catch fire each year which in turn cause about 100 injuries. While it may surprise some, neglecting to clean your dryer is the most common cause of a fire. As such, preventing dryer fires is actually easy if the homeowner is aware of the potential of fire damage and takes steps to avoid an accident from occurring in their home.

Keep in mind the following tips for dryer fire prevention:

  1. Hire a professional to install your dryer, do not attempt to do this yourself
  2. Make sure that your laundry room has no flammable items inside or near the dryer
  3. Clean your linen filter both before and after every single load of laundry
  4. Get your dryer serviced regularly
  5. Be sure that your dryer’s vent pipe is free, blockage is one the top causes of dryer fires
  6. Hire a professional to look at your gas lines
  7. Never run your dryer when you are asleep or not home
  8. Avoid overloading your dryer
  9. Clean your dryer in any place where lint can build up
  10. Use metal dryer ducts
  11. Check the electrical outlet and plug to ensure it is connected correctly
  12. Do not dry any items containing rubber, foam, or plastic
  13. Do not dry clothes that have anything flammable on them such as gas, alcohol, or cooking oils
  14. Leave ample room between your dryer and the wall behind it
  15. Read your manufacturers’ instructions to go over particular safety tips for your dryer

From lack of maintenance to dirty dryers, almost every single dryer fire each year is caused by something that could have been avoided. If you have experienced dryer fire in your home, SERVPRO North Rowan County / Salisbury is here to deal with the fire damage. Call us today to learn more!    704-939-1944