Recent Fire Damage Posts

What To Know About Renter’s Insurance and Fire Coverage

12/27/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage What To Know About Renter’s Insurance and Fire Coverage Fire damage to living room in Downtown Costa Mesa, CA

If you’re a renter and your home in Downtown Costa Mesa, CA, is damaged by fire, you need to understand that the value of your personal belongings is not protected by the insurance coverage your landlord holds. Your landlord’s insurance takes care of structural damage. What can you do to recover the value of your personal belongings? Consider renter’s insurance. Each policy is different so here are some coverage types you want to know about before you call an agent.

Coverage Considerations

Insurance policies may encompass different types of coverage. Here are some common features of these plans:

  • Loss of Use. This piece of the policy can help you pay for a place to stay if your rental abode is damaged.

  • Liability. This is a common feature of most renter’s insurance policies and is important to protect you from financial destitution in the case that you or your family may have accidently started the fire.

  • Medical Payments to Others. These are usually smaller payments for minor, no-fault injuries, but are still an important part of coverage.

Make sure you discuss these with your agent and decide what selections are right for you.

Item Valuation

Another important detail to check is if your plan covers replacement costs or cash value for items with fire damage. You don’t really want a policy that will only pay you cash value. That means that your belongings are depreciated and have a lesser value. This makes sense that the television you’ve had for ten years may only fetch a few bucks, but if you need to replace a TV damaged by fire, you would certainly have to pay more than that.

Recovery

If a fire does strike, a renter’s insurance policy can help protect you financially by helping with injuries, money for a place to live temporarily and replacement of your belongings. You may also benefit from calling a professional for damage assessment to see if any of your personal items may be recoverable. Professionals specialize in fire restoration and may be able to clean smoke or soot from your personal items.

Three Tips for Preventing a Cigarette Fire in Your Home

10/24/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Three Tips for Preventing a Cigarette Fire in Your Home A cigarette fire can cause a lot of damage to your Mesa Verde,CA home

As a smoker in Mesa Verde,CA, or if you share a residence with a smoke, you may already be aware of the dangers of a cigarette fire, and the fact that this is still one of the most common ways house fires start. If this is something that concerns you there are a few easy steps you can take to help prevent a fire in your home.

1. Smoke Outside

Smoking outside is one of the easiest steps you can take to prevent an ashtray fire from spreading in your home. Not only is there less risk of a flammable object coming in contact with a lit cigarette outdoors, but keeping the smoke outdoors may also help prevent odors from settling into your valuables.

2. Avoid Smoking When Distracted

One of the main ways a cigarette fire can start is when the smoker becomes distracted. Avoiding distraction while smoking can help prevent accidents that occur when a lit cigarette is left unattended or accidentally dropped. Avoid smoking when on medication, if you are feeling sleepy, when multitasking, or when drinking.

3. Properly Dispose of Used Cigarettes and Ashes

Improperly disposed cigarettes and ashes are another common way an ashtray fire can occur. Always put out your cigarette when not in use, even if you intend to come back to it. Clean out your ashtray regularly, and ensure there are no smoldering remains before dumping.

If fire cleanup becomes necessary, or if you are worried about odor then a professional service in Mesa Verde, CA, may be able to help. They can restore your home back to its original shape and may also be able to help with any water damage that occurred as a result of the fire.

A cigarette fire can cause a lot of damage to a home. However, this type of fire can also be preventable. If you or a loved one smoke, remember to do so outside, don’t smoke while tired or distracted, and always properly dispose of the cigarette and its ashes. Also remember to never leave a cigarette unattended.

Basic First Aid for Burns

8/28/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Basic First Aid for Burns Fire damage in Mesa Verde, CA home

Fire damage at your workplace in Mesa Verde, CA, or anywhere you spend time carries with it the risk of injury. Knowing how to administer even the most basic burn first aid can help to alleviate suffering until first responders arrive. The first step is to assess the severity of the burn.

Treating Major Burns

A major burn will require professional medical care, but until help arrives, first aid is usually appropriate. Once 911 has been summoned to assist casualties and minimize fire damage, be sure that the afflicted person has been moved away from the burn source and proceed carefully with these steps:

  • Check to see if the person is breathing; if not, perform rescue breathing.
  • Elevate the burned area higher than the heart, if possible.
  • Cover the burned area gently with a cool, clean, dampened cloth.
  • Remove any restrictive items like jewelry or belts in case of swelling.
  • Watch for signs of shock such as paleness and shallow, fast breathing.

Recognizing Minor Burns

A minor burn will be uncomfortable but not life-threatening. Characteristics of a minor burn are relatively easy to spot:

  • Superficial redness
  • A small affected area
  • Minor blistering
  • Some pain

Appropriate treatment in the case of a superficial burn is to remove jewelry, such as a ring, in case the area begins to swell. Cool the burn with a damp compress or cool, running water. Do not puncture blisters or apply ice to burned skin. An antibiotic ointment can help if a blister breaks, and an aloe vera gel or lotion can help pain topically. Pain relievers purchased over the counter can help manage discomfort. A loose, sterile gauze bandage offers additional protection.

The safety and comfort of fire victims is naturally the first priority in the event of a disaster in the workplace. Fire damage of property can be addressed through professionals in assessment, cleaning, and restoration once the smoke clears.

How To Choose a Fire Extinguisher: 3 Tips

7/24/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage How To Choose a Fire Extinguisher: 3 Tips Finding the right fire extinguisher for your Costa Mesa, CA, home can be challenging.

There are many ways to keep your Costa Mesa, CA, home safe from the ravages of fire. Keeping an effective fire extinguisher in your kitchen or utility room can reduce the risk of a fire spreading or growing into something you cannot douse on your own. However, there are many different types of extinguishers available, so knowing how to choose the best one for your home’s size and circumstances can be an important factor when it comes to putting out fires.

1. Review the Label

Most fire extinguishers have different labels and are classified as either A, B or C. Each letter stands for the type of combustible it puts out, including whether the unit can put out electrical or flammable fires. You may want to choose one that has each of these classifications so you can put out a variety of fires that may spring up around your home.

2. Ask a Professional

If you are unsure which fire extinguishers are the best choice to put out a home fire, consider asking your local fire damage and restoration service advice about which units are the most suitable and what to look for as you shop. Experienced technicians can assess the fire risk around your home and then advise you on which extinguishers might be the most useful.

3. Consider the Size

Fire preparedness includes knowing which size fire extinguisher is best for different areas of your house. While a ten-pound unit may be stronger than one that weighs five pounds, consider which is easier to lift and use for each member of the family. A model that weighs five pounds can put out kitchen fires effectively, so remember that bigger is not always better.

Finding the right fire extinguisher for your Costa Mesa, CA, home can be challenging. However, with a little research and solid advice under your belt, you can make the best decision possible when it comes to keeping your family safe. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROcostamesa.com/.

Costa Mesa Smoke and Soot Cleanup

5/31/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Costa Mesa Smoke and Soot Cleanup Whether it's one room or an entire home, SERVPRO of Costa Mesa can help clean it all from start to finish.

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  Costa Mesa 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.

For further information regarding fire damage, check us out here 

or

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call Us Today – 
949-566-8887

5 Ways To Prevent Cigarette Fires

5/9/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage 5 Ways To Prevent Cigarette Fires After a fire, contact your local Costa Mesa, CA, SERVPRO, that provides residential fire cleanup.

5 Ways To Prevent Cigarette Fires

Even though less people smoke nowadays, cigarettes remain one of the most common causes of house fires. Here are five ways to lower the risk of starting a cigarette fire or ashtray fire in your home.

1. Smoke outside. The best way to make sure that a cigarette does not ignite flammable materials in your home is to smoke outside. You should also keep handy an ashtray or a bucket filled with sand to extinguish cigarettes, which lowers the possibility of starting a fire outside as well.

2. Completely extinguish cigarettes. When you are done smoking a cigarette, be sure to completely extinguish the burning end. Smoldering ends may cause fires if they are knocked over or blown away.

3. Don’t smoke if you’re drowsy. The situation that usually precedes a cigarette fire is when a smoker falls asleep with a lit cigarette. Bedrooms especially are a common place for cigarette or candle fires to break out as these items are left unattended when someone falls asleep.

4. Never smoke around medical oxygen. Oxygen tanks pose a major risk of combustion when combined with a lit cigarette. Keep cigarettes away from these high-pressure systems.

5. Use stable ashtrays. Whether you are smoking in or near your home, you should make sure that the ashtray you use is stable and preferably heavy. If you have pets, they may knock over an ashtray, so be sure that you completely extinguish the cigarette butts before discarding them. This also lowers the risk of an ashtray fire.

Following these five simple suggestions can prevent a cigarette fire. If a fire does break out in your home due to cigarettes, candles, cooking equipment, or any other source, you should contact the fire department immediately. Then, contact a service in Costa Mesa, CA, that provides residential fire cleanup. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROcostamesa.com/

Taking Care of Costa Mesa Antique Glass, Crystal & Various Items

4/24/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Taking Care of Costa Mesa Antique Glass, Crystal & Various Items From saving clothing onsite, cleaning soot from ceilings/walls, to boxing up and sending pack precious items, we do it all.

When it comes to disaster, we at SERVPRO of Costa Mesa understand and are all too familiar with the fact that fires don’t just affect a person’s physical home or place of business, but also the contents within it that are also tied to a person’s emotional state of being. It is why when we are chosen to pack out, clean, restore and pack back items from a person’s home or business, we take extra care of each and every item. We go the extra mile to pay attention to items such as antique glass or crystal. The reasoning behind this is that during a disaster, like a fire, the exposure of glasses and crystal to high heat can reduce the stability of the items to stay in form. Lifting an item without checking it for cracks or damages can cause further damage than the fire itself. Items such as the inherited family couch or your favorite t-shirt are cleaned according to the fabric involved and not just brushed aside with soap, water and Fabreeze. We use washing chemicals that are hypoallergenic, pet friendly, child and elderly safe and ensure that each item we send back to you is clean in both smells and stains.

When we arrive on a scene we take pictures of everything we see as we see it initially. From there, for contents, we take a photo inventory of where items are, where the items are being placed in certain marked boxes, and then we take them back to our warehouse for cleaning and restoration. When we do this, we do so at an even pace because there are times we must slow down in order to review individual items for cleaning. For example, a crystal or antique glasses that are lined with or involve gold will be placed aside and cleaned differently than some of the other items. Gold items are never cleaned with ammonia, due to the fact that it will ruin the item entirely. We’ve been known to restore dining room sets, original pieces of artwork and even cleaned and stored grand pianos while the home or place of business was in the process of getting back to “Like it never even happened” status.

Even though there are a variety of ways to assist in packing out and packing back contents for a person’s home or place of business, we at SERVPRO of Costa Mesa like to be on the safe, healthy and cautious side for all your items. We understand that sometimes the value of an item isn’t the money it cost, but the sentiment tied to it that makes it priceless. Beyond items we also offer a variety of cleaning services you can view here. We hope that for any future contents needs, you consider SERVPRO of Costa Mesa. If you have questions feel free to give us a call at 949-566-8887 or online  here.

3 Tips for Fire Safety

4/24/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage 3 Tips for Fire Safety Different types of fires need different fire extinguishers.

Fire safety is often talked about, but rarely practiced. We learn about fire drills in school as children, but we don't practice about them at home or work when we become adults. We assume that somewhere deep within us we will have that memory stored for the day a fire emergency arises and we will be able to respond accordingly. THIS IS FALSE! Fire safety should be discussed and practiced at least four times a year (once every quarter). Here are a few things that should be done to ensure that you don’t panic when disaster strikes.

  • Check the batteries in your fire alarms every three months. Each and every home fire alarm has a “TEST” button. A simple push of it will give you an idea if the batteries are full of power or dying out. Always consult your owner’s manual for your specific fire alarm.

  • Have an exit route planned, at home and at the office. Generally professional building will have fire exit paths marked, but don’t count on it. Be alert and know your exits at the office so you can get home safely. When at home, practice with your kids at least once a year and discuss the fire safety rules at least twice a year. Making sure that your children are safe is every parents top priority, and making sure that we are able to help in case of emergency is ours.

  • Don’t just buy a fire extinguisher, know how to use it. Don’t wait for a fire to happen and think that reading the instructions as the fire is burning will play out like it does in the movies. You can’t just have the equipment ready, you should know how to use it so when an emergency arises you are not wasting precious seconds reading the “how to” when you could be getting the fire out.

  • Have your numbers ready. If a fire disaster should strike, know who to call once fire is contained. Whether it is the fire department that put out the fire or you were able to contain that kitchen grease fire within your home, be sure to call the correct people to help you get your life back to normal. We are here for this step and every step afterward until the job is done. Save our number in your phone and you’ll be glad you did. 949-566-8887

The Smoke Damage Timeline

2/14/2018 (Permalink)

If you’ve suffered a fire in your commercial building then you know how difficult it is to get back up and running. Not only do you need to make sure that the fire doesn’t happen twice, but you need your company to thrive. The problem is that some people wait too long when it comes to smoke damage. If you don’t understand why this is a problem, here is what happens when you wait.

1. Minutes After a Fire

As soon as the fire is put out, the soot and residue starts to settle in. One of the reasons you want to catch smoke damage early is because it’s easier to stop the effects from happening as quickly. Most smoke will begin to stain surfaces right away.

2. Hours After a Fire

It only takes hours after a fire to start to see all of the effects that it had. Your wooden furniture may look rugged and in need of refinishing. You may recognize that anything metal has begun to rust and that the walls are turning yellow. Even your clothes may be permanently stained by the soot damage. In just hours following the fire, your flooring, walls and clothing may sustain enough damage to need replacing.

3. Weeks After a Fire

Once you wait weeks after a fire, the soot will have done further damage to surfaces. As the soot embeds itself into the surfaces, it becomes more difficult to clean out. It can completely bury electronics, cause short-circuiting and be impossible to clean out of fabrics.

You never want to wait to have a thorough smoke cleaning performed by restoration specialists. There is enough to worry about when it comes to fire damage to a commercial building in Costa Mesa, CA. It’s important that you take care of any problems with smoke damage as soon as possible. After all, time is of the essence. Visit http://www.SERVPROcostamesa.com for more information on commercial fire damage.

Preparing Pets for Fire Emergencies

2/7/2018 (Permalink)

Disasters such as fires can happen to any family in homes across Costa Mesa, CA. You need to consider pet safety as well as your own in the event of a fire. Your pets are vulnerable during fires, too, so it’s vital to have the right pet preparation to ensure they escape the devastating effects of fires and smoke damage.


1. Include your pets in your escape plans. If you don’t have a family escape plan in the event of a fire emergency, it’s time to create one now. Have an evacuation plan for pets. Have pet ownership and vaccinations records in a fire box. Decide how to quickly get your pets out without compromising your own safety. Time your escape and work on ways to shave seconds off of your route.

2. Practice is essential for your safety and for your pets. Going over your escape plan several times is critical for pet preparation. Train your pet, when possible and applicable to come when called.

3. Leave without your pets if necessary. It sounds terrible, but in a worst-case scenario, don’t go back inside to get a pet if it isn’t safe to do so. While you care deeply for your companion and for pet safety, don’t put your own life in danger or the life of a child to save a pet.

4. Reduce the risk of fire in your home. The best way to keep yourself and your pets safe in a fire is to never have a fire. Be wary of open flames in your home, such as candles, especially flames in reach of your pets.


A fire emergency is a real concern for any homeowner in Costa Mesa, CA. Pet preparation and safety are important factors as you consider how to avoid fires and how to get out of your home if one starts. Consult the trusted experts for advice on fire safety for pets. Visit http://www.SERVPROcostamesa.com for more information on fire damage.

Fire Statistics in America & Tips To Keep Costa Mesa Residents Safe

7/14/2016 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Fire Statistics in America & Tips To Keep Costa Mesa Residents Safe A few examples of some fires that SERVPRO of Costa Mesa was involved in helping to clean and restore.

Every year homes, churches and office buildings catch fire. The numbers of reasons are endless as to why. Whether intentional or by accident, the statics for fires in America has been increasingly higher each year. Per www.nfpa.org (National Fire Protection Agency), the statistics below show the 2014 year (2015 has to be collected) for what is at cost when a fire occurs.

In 2014, there were 1,298,000 fires reported in the United States. These fires caused 3,275 civilian deaths, 15,775 civilian injuries, and $11.6 billion in property damage.

  • 494,000 were structure fires, causing 2,860 civilian deaths, 13,425 civilian injuries, and $9.8 billion in property damage.

  • 193,500 were vehicle fires, causing 345 civilian fire deaths, 1,450 civilian fire injuries, and $1.5 billion in property damage.

  • 610,500 were outside and other fires, causing 70 civilian fire deaths, 900 civilian fire injuries, and $237 million in property damage.

    Beyond the numbers of what fire cost, the frequency in which fire occurs is listed below, also cited from www.nfpa.org.

    The 2014 U.S. fire loss clock a fire department responded to a fire every 24 seconds. One structure fire was reported every 64 seconds.

  • One home structure fire was reported every 86 seconds.

  • One civilian fire injury was reported every 33 minutes.

  • One civilian fire death occurred every 2 hours and 41 minutes.

  • One outside and other fire was reported every 52 seconds.

  • One highway vehicle fire was reported every 3 minutes 8 seconds.

    So now that we know the numbers that affect us in America, what can we do to decrease such statistics listed above? For starters, having the knowledge of how to identify the risk of potential fires will help everyone stop a fire before it starts.

  • If outdoors, keep dry brush away from camping fires or BBQs. When done, be sure to water down any flames or embers that were burning, even if they have stopped smoking. Always keeping abucket of water nearby would be wise as well.

  • Keep front lawns and bushes cut to reduce potential fire hazards. Just because California is in a drought and we are limiting water, doesn’t mean you should let the wild brown grass or bushes grown wildly.

  • Home rooftops and exterior attic vents with metal wire mesh should be checked seasonally at the very least.

  • If driving a vehicle, pull over as quickly as possible, turn off the engine, get everyone out of the car and move at least 100 feet from the vehicle. Call 911 right away.

  • If indoors, keep plants and loose cloths/curtains aware from fire places, gas stoves and candles. Any open flame is a risk for a potential fire. Have a small fire extinguisher in the kitchen, garage, and hall closet to be extra safe.

  • Make sure that those around you know how to use a fire extinguisher.

  • Have an escape plan. Whether outdoors or inside, always plan an escape route in case a fire should occur. Two story homes could be just as dangerous as an open field. Keep in mind that fires can spread quickly and are more often than not, unpredictable. Inside a home or office can spread just as quickly as being in an open field and then being surrounded by flames.

  • Know how to read if a closed door is a safe exit away from fire or if it just a barrier between you and further flames. Place a hand on the door. If it is warm or bloated, it isn’t safe. If it is cool, it is ok to go through and should be closed behind you. Every door when leaving a fire should be closed behind you if possible.

  • Keep fire alarms operational and frequently check the batteries. If an alarm goes off, leave the premises immediately. If you must exit through smoke, sty low and crawl to your nearest exit. Each room should always have two escape routes.

  • Never use elevators if you live in a high rise apartment complex or are at a hotel. Stairs will be your go to in order to leave a building. 

There will be times we won’t be able to avoid fires, accidents do happen. If that is the case, once everyone is safe, let us come help you get everything back to like it never even happened. SERVPRO has years experience in a variety of fire claims. From natural disasters involving lightening storms to electrical fires to fireworks and Christmas Trees taking over a person’s home, we have seen it all and we know how to help. Contact your local SERVPRO straight away.