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How to repair fire damaged house

1/6/2023 (Permalink)

Fire fighter coming out of fire damaged house Fire fighter coming out of fire damaged house

Fires can cause immense damage to homes and the people who live in them. The physical destruction that a fire can cause is devastating, but there are steps you can take to repair your home after a fire has occurred. With the right tools, resources, and support, you can begin the process of restoring your house back to its former glory. 

Let’s break down how to repair fire damaged houses and where the best support can be found.

Assess the Damage 

The first step in repairing a fire damaged home is to assess the damage done. It’s important to be aware of what areas have been affected. This will help you determine what repairs need to be made—and how extensive they might be. Take pictures of the damaged areas, so you have a record for insurance purposes. Make sure all members of your household know which areas are unsafe or off-limits until repairs are complete. 

In many cases, the home will be unlivable until the smoke damage is removed (since the smoke damage can be harmful to a person’s health). You’ll likely need to board up and tarp up your home to prevent further damage. A fire damage restoration company can help with this.

Clean Up 

Once you’ve assessed the damages, it’s time to start cleaning up! This means discarding any items that cannot be salvaged. This may include furniture and household items that have been destroyed by smoke or water damage from putting out the fire. 

You should also remove any debris from inside and outside of your home—this includes burnt wood, ash, debris, etc. Make sure all hazardous materials are disposed of properly according to local regulations. 

Cleaning up promptly will help reduce potential health hazards associated with living among debris in a damaged home environment. During this process, remember to wear the appropriate PPE to protect yourself from harmful toxins. 

Keep in mind, a professional fire restoration company can also help clean contents that have been damaged by smoke and soot. They usually have access to large industrial equipment that can clean clothes, blankets, rugs, and other items and remove the odor of smoke from them.

Repair & Restore 

Now it’s time for the actual repairs! Depending on how severe the fire damage was, you may need professional help for some aspects of this process (e.g., electrical wiring). Otherwise, you may choose to do some repairs yourself (if they don’t require special expertise). 

That being said, in most situations, drywall replacement and structural repairs are required. It’s usually safer to contact a turnkey restoration company for this process. You want to make sure that your home is safe and structurally sound moving forward.

Once all the necessary repairs are completed, it’s time to restore your home! This could mean repainting walls or replacing flooring as needed; both will depend on how much damage was done during the fire itself and during clean-up efforts afterwards. Replacing furniture and other household items is also an important part of restoring your home after a fire has occurred. Remember to keep a full inventory of everything you replace, so it’s available for your insurance company if required.

Fire damage can be incredibly destructive; however, there are steps that can be taken to repair your home following an incident like this one! Assess the damage done by taking pictures; clean up debris both inside and outside your house; and then repair & restore whatever needs fixing or replacing (with professional help if necessary). 

Can a dryer catch on fire?

1/5/2023 (Permalink)

Dryer in laundry room. Dryer in laundry room.

Can a dryer catch on fire? You bet it can. But unfortunately, many homeowners don't ever think about the potential fire hazard a dryer can pose. 

Every year, thousands of house fires start due to dryers—but how do they start and what can you do to avoid dryer fires? Let’s break it down.

Can a dryer catch on fire?

Dryers are one of the most common causes of household fires. This is because lint is an extremely flammable material. 

As clothes are dried, small particles of lint become detached from the fabric and accumulate in the lint trap or vent. If these particles build up too much, they can easily catch on fire. 

Let’s dig a little deeper into the top causes of dryer fires.

Lint Buildup 

Every time you run a load of laundry in the dryer, lint builds up. However, lint is a highly combustible material, and when it builds up in the trap or the vent line, it can create a fire hazard. If you don’t remove the lint after every load of laundry, there is an increased risk that sparks could ignite and cause a fire. 


Your dryer might also start a fire if it overheats. This usually happens when you have too much clothing in the drum at once, which can obstruct airflow and cause the machine to overheat. This can eventually spark or catch fire. 

You should always follow manufacturers recommendations on load size or opt for low heat settings. 


An overloaded dryer can also pose a risk for starting a fire. This is because too much weight will put extra strain on the dryer’s motor, which could cause it to short circuit or spark out of control. That being said, make sure not to overload your machine with more than what is recommended by the manufacturer. If you need more room for larger items (like comforters), then consider breaking up your dirty laundry into multiple loads – rather than forcing items into one load. This can easily damage the machine and potentially even lead to a house fire. 

How to prevent dryer fires

Fortunately, there are several steps you can take to reduce your risk for a dryer-related house fire. These steps include but are not limited to:

  • Clean out the lint trap after every use
  • Clean out any external vents once every 3 months
  • Check for any blockages in vents regularly
  • Make sure you purchase a high-quality dryer that is designed for safety
  • Have your dryer serviced annually by a professional technician  
  • Never overload the dryer
  • Clean up any lint around, under, or on top of your dryer

Taking these simple steps can help you keep your dryer working safely and efficiently. Bear in mind – if you ever smell something burning when using your dryer, turn it off immediately and have it checked by a professional before using it again.  

No one ever wants their home to be affected by a devastating fire caused by their appliances. That’s why it’s important to be aware of the potential risks associated with using your dryers and take action now to prevent them before they become an issue down the line. By following these tips outlined above, you can reduce your risk of experiencing dryer fire in your home!

What is a crime scene cleaner?

1/5/2023 (Permalink)

Blood on the ground of a crime scene. Blood on the ground of a crime scene.

When a tragedy occurs, it often involves more than just the individuals involved in the incident. After emergency personnel have done their job and left the scene, a crime scene cleaner is often called upon to help with the aftermath. But what is a crime scene cleaner, and what do they do? Let’s take a closer look. 

What Does a Crime Scene Cleaner Do? 

A crime scene cleaner (also known as a biohazard remediation technician or trauma scene specialist) specializes in cleaning up traumatic events. These events can include homicides, suicides, and other accidents that result in blood or bodily fluids being present on a property. 

Crime scene cleaners are trained professionals who understand how to safely remove biohazards from a property without spreading any disease or contaminating the area further. This includes following strict protocols for wearing personal protective equipment (PPE), as well as for transporting and disposing of such material. 

Crime scene cleaners often work with law enforcement agencies to ensure that all evidence has been removed from the area before performing any cleanup services. They also use specialized equipment (such as vacuums with high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters) to capture any microscopic particles that may remain after the initial cleanup process is complete. 

Crime scene cleaners may also use industrial-grade cleaning agents designed to eliminate bacteria, viruses, and odors from the environment. In addition to physically cleaning up after an event, crime scene cleaners also dispose of all biohazardous materials in accordance with local laws and regulations.  

The Benefits of Hiring Professional Crime Scene Cleaners 

For families dealing with tragedy on their property, there are many benefits associated with hiring professional crime scene cleaners (rather than attempting to clean up after an incident by themselves). 

Professional crime scene cleaners can provide much-needed peace of mind during an already difficult time. This is because they know how to handle contaminated materials properly and can prevent hazardous material from spreading further throughout a home or business establishment. 

Additionally, allowing professional crime scene cleaners to handle the cleanup allows family members or other occupants of the premises to avoid further trauma that comes with the physical cleanup of a crime scene.

Hiring professional crime scene cleaners can provide much-needed assistance during difficult times – while ensuring that your property remains safe and free from contamination after an incident has occurred on your premises. For those who find themselves in need of this service due to unfortunate circumstances beyond their control, understanding what these experts do can go a long way towards providing peace of mind during one of life’s most trying moments.

Your Guide to Water Damage Restoration in Texas

1/4/2023 (Permalink)

Water overflowing in a dark bathroom. Water overflowing in the bathroom.

Water damage in Texas is a serious problem. When your Texas home or business experiences water damage due to a burst pipe or other water-related disaster, it’s important to act quickly. The quicker you act, the more likely it is that you can minimize damage and prevent further destruction. That’s where water damage restoration comes in. Let’s take a closer look at what water damage restoration is and how you can manage water damage restoration in Texas.

What is Water Damage Restoration? 

Water damage restoration in Texas is the process of restoring a property that has been damaged by water back to its original condition. This includes removing standing water, assessing the extent of the damage, removing affected materials (such as furniture and carpets), drying out remaining damp areas with fans, dehumidifiers and other equipment, cleaning up all affected areas (including walls and floors) to remove mold or mildew growth, disinfecting all affected surfaces with antimicrobial solutions to kill bacteria as well as mold spores and monitoring the drying process for several days until complete dryness is achieved. 

Why Should You Restore Your Property?

Restoring your property after a water-related disaster can save you time and money in the long run. Let’s break down the key benefits:

  • Eliminated Moisture: It helps prevent costly repairs caused by structural damage from prolonged exposure to moisture.
  • Prevents Mold: You can prevent mold growth, which can cause a variety of health problems for occupants.
  • Removes Odors: Water damage restoration eliminates odors caused by mold or mildew and prevents permanent staining on valuables.
  • Restores Property: This process restores your property back to its pre-damaged state. 

How Do You Restore Water Damaged Property?

When it comes to water damage restoration in Texas, the steps are almost always the same. Let’s break down the 3 primary steps and why they matter.

Assess the Damage 

After you make sure the source of the leak or flooding is turned off, the first step in water damage restoration is to assess the full extent of the damage. This will help you determine what type of repair work needs to be done. 

You should begin by inspecting all your walls and floors for signs of moisture or discoloration. This will help you understand how much of the house (or your business) has been affected by the water damage. It’s also important to inspect any furniture or appliances that may have been damaged, so you can create a complete picture of what needs to be restored. 

Call a Professional for Help 

Depending on how severe the water damage is in your home, it may be best to call in professional help for repairs. A qualified contractor can do additional assessments on areas like walls and floors that might need replacing or repairs due to long-term exposure to moisture, as well as offer guidance on other matters such as insurance claims. If you don’t have experience dealing with these types of issues yourself, it would be wise to enlist professional help because they have access to specialized tools designed specifically for water damage restoration. 

Keep in mind – when assessing the damage of the water leak or flood, it’s important to remember that moisture is easy to hide. Without the help of a professional (or at the very least, professional tools), you may not be able to catch all the damaging moisture caught within your walls and flooring.

Remove Standing Water and Dry Out Your Home 

Once you’ve identified how extensive the water damage is, it’s time to begin removing any standing water from your home. You should use a wet/dry vacuum cleaner or a mop and bucket to remove as much water as possible from carpets, upholstery, and other surfaces. Be sure to dry out all affected areas thoroughly before proceeding with repairs—this prevents mold growth and structural damage down the line. In many cases, this will require professional equipment (like dehumidifiers). If you don’t have access to this equipment, it’s likely that you’ll need to call a professional water damage restoration company in Texas.

Water damage can be devastating but if addressed promptly with professional help it can be managed effectively without causing too much disruption or expense. If you find yourself facing a water emergency at home or work, make sure you call qualified professionals right away so they can assess the situation quickly and start working towards restoring your property back into its original condition without any further delay! With their help you can get back on track quickly while avoiding potentially costly repairs down the road due to prolonged exposure to moisture!

Your Guide to Crime Scene Cleanup in Texas

1/4/2023 (Permalink)

Yellow crime scene tape Yellow crime scene tape

Crime scenes can be emotionally and physically traumatic. Cleaning up after a crime scene is not something anyone should have to do alone. It is difficult, time-consuming, and often requires specialized services. Thankfully, if you need help cleaning up after a crime scene in Texas, there are many companies located throughout the state that can assist. Let’s break down what crime scene cleanup companies do and what you should look for when selecting a company for crime scene cleanup in Texas.

Crime Scene Cleanup Companies in Texas 

There are numerous crime scene cleanup companies located throughout Texas that specialize in providing services to those dealing with the aftermath of a crime. These companies are staffed with compassionate and experienced professionals who understand the trauma associated with the cleanup process. They offer full-service packages which include disinfecting, sanitizing, and restoring contaminated environments so they can be safely occupied again. 

What Services Do Crime Scene Cleanup Companies Provide? 

These specialized crime scene cleanup services usually include hazardous material removal, decontamination, sanitation, disposal of hazardous materials (such as blood or bodily fluids), and odor control measures (such as ozone treatments or charcoal filtering systems). Additionally, many of these companies offer residential remodeling services (if needed due to damage from the incident at hand). These companies understand that it is important to take all safety precautions necessary when handling hazardous materials which can contain harmful bacteria or viruses.

In addition to these services, many of these companies provide content cleaning services. This is especially useful if any linen, rugs, or clothes have been soiled during the event. 

Do Crime Scene Cleanup Companies in Texas Need to be Licensed?

If you're living in Texas and you've recently experienced a tragedy such as a murder or suicide, then you may be considering hiring a crime scene cleanup company. But did you know that these companies do not need to be licensed in Texas? That's right, there is no legal requirement for crime scene cleanup companies to have a license. 

Fortunately, there are ways to ensure that you hire only reputable crime scene cleanup companies in Texas. For starters, make sure to ask any biohazard cleaning company about their training, on-the-job safety protocols, and certifications; reputable companies will have undergone extensive training on how to best clean up biohazards safely and effectively. And keep in mind, it never hurts to ask for references from previous clients. This will give you an idea of what level of service they can provide, their customer service, and more. 

If you need assistance cleaning up after a traumatic event on your property in Texas, we can help. At SERVPRO of Sherman/Denison, we provide high-quality and professional crime scene cleanup services throughout the metroplex. If you need help, give us a call today at (903) 893-7166 or request service online.

Do frozen pipes always burst?

1/4/2023 (Permalink)

Drying water damage in living room after burst pipe. Drying water damage in living room after burst pipe.

As winter approaches and temperatures drop, it’s important to be aware of the dangers that come with frozen pipes. In extreme cold weather, water can freeze inside a pipe and cause it to burst. But does this happen every time a pipe freezes? Let’s take a closer look at the risks associated with frozen pipes and how you can prevent them from happening in your home. 

What Causes Frozen Pipes? 

Pipes can freeze when temperatures dip below 32 degrees Fahrenheit for extended periods of time. The water inside a pipe expands as it turns into ice, putting pressure on the walls of the pipe and causing them to become brittle. If there is too much pressure, the pipe will eventually break, leading to flooding and serious damage in your home or business. 

Dealing with a burst pipe? Contact a water restoration company now.

Why Do Frozen Pipes Burst? 

When water freezes, it expands in volume by up to 9% - this is why ice cubes swell in size when left in the freezer overnight. As a result, the freezing process causes immense pressure on the pipe walls, which can lead to a dramatic increase in pressure or even a complete rupture. This sudden increase in pressure is what causes frozen pipes to burst. 

When Will Frozen Pipes Burst? 

Whether or not a frozen pipe will burst depends on a variety of factors including the temperature of the pipe, its age and condition, and how long it has been subjected to extreme cold temperatures. Generally speaking, however, if an area has experienced particularly frigid temperatures for several days or weeks at a time then there is an increased risk that your pipes may freeze and eventually burst. 

How Can You Prevent Frozen Pipes? 

The best way to prevent frozen pipes is by taking proactive steps before temperatures start to drop. 

First, make sure all exposed pipes are insulated against the cold. You should also disconnect hoses from outdoor faucets and shut off any valves connected to outside water sources. 

Additionally, keep cabinet doors open during cold snaps so warmer air can circulate around plumbing systems in your home or business. 

Finally, if temperatures drop significantly below freezing for an extended period of time, you should run taps (hot and cold) at a trickle level throughout your house or building so that water keeps moving and doesn’t freeze in the pipes.  

What Should I Do If My Pipes Freeze? 

If you find yourself dealing with a frozen pipe, it’s best not to panic and instead take immediate action by turning off your water supply at the main shutoff valve and calling a plumber right away. 

A professional plumber will be able to inspect your pipes and provide solutions for thawing them out without risking further damage or bursting. Additionally, opening cabinet doors under sinks or near exposed plumbing fixtures can help increase air circulation around these areas so heat can reach them faster.

Frozen pipes are an all too common problem faced by homeowners during colder months of the year but understanding how they freeze and how you can prevent them from doing so is key for avoiding expensive repairs due to burst piping or water damage caused by leaking frozen pipes. Taking preventive measures such as proper insulation of exposed piping or investing in a heating system for extreme climates along with knowing what steps should be taken if you discover a frozen pipe will equip you with all that you need to know about preventing costly repairs caused by frozen plumbing woes this winter season!

How do you know if your pipes are frozen?

1/4/2023 (Permalink)

Cabin in the snow Cabin in the snow

The winter months can bring a unique set of problems to homeowners, and one of the most common is frozen pipes. But how do you know if your pipes are frozen and what should you do if they are? Let’s break it down.

How do you know if your pipes are frozen?

Frigid Temperatures 

One of the most obvious signs that you may have frozen pipes is a sudden drop in the temperature in your house or apartment. If you notice that it’s much colder than it was before, then it’s possible that your pipes have frozen due to the cold temperatures outside. This is especially true if you’re living in an area where temperatures routinely dip below freezing during the wintertime. 

No Water Flow 

Another sign that your pipes might be frozen is a lack of water flow when you turn on any faucets or shower heads. If you turn on a faucet and only a small amount of water comes out (or no water at all), then there could be ice blocking the pipe somewhere along its route through your home.  

Frost On The Pipes 

If you can easily access any exposed piping (such as in an unfinished basement or attic), look for frost on the surface of the pipe. This indicates that there is ice inside the pipe and it has likely been caused by freezing temperatures outside. It’s important to remember that not all pipes will be visible, so if you suspect that there could be an issue with any hidden piping, then contact a professional plumber as soon as possible. This will be much cheaper and less time consuming than dealing with the aftermath of a burst pipe and a water damage and restoration company.

How do you deal with frozen pipes?

Once you have determined that one or more of your pipes are indeed frozen, there are several steps you should take right away to prevent any further damage caused by freezing temperatures. 

First, open all interior doors and under-the-sink cabinet doors so warm air can circulate through all areas of the house (including basements). Second, shut off both hot and cold water main valves so no additional water can enter the system. Finally, contact a licensed plumber as soon as possible. They can come and safely thaw out any affected pipes without damaging them further.  

Frozen pipes can quickly lead to serious damage if they aren’t dealt with promptly, so knowing how to tell if your pipes are frozen is essential for preventing further issues down the road. Signs such as sudden drops in temperature, no water flow, and frost on exposed piping can all indicate potential issues with freezing temperatures outside. If you suspect that any of these issues may apply to your home, contact a professional plumber right away!

Will frozen pipes thaw on their own?

1/4/2023 (Permalink)

Frozen lights on the outside of a house. Frozen lights on the outside of a house.

In the winter, have you ever gone to turn on the faucet only to find that nothing comes out? If this has happened, you may be dealing with frozen pipes. And if your pipes are frozen, it's important to take action quickly since frozen pipes can lead to costly repairs. That being said, will frozen pipes thaw on their own or are you bound to experience a burst pipe? Let’s discuss.

What Causes Frozen Pipes? 

Frozen pipes occur when the temperature drops below freezing and water inside the pipe freezes. When temperatures drop, it doesn't take long for the water in your plumbing system to freeze solid—especially if there is no insulation around the pipes. The most vulnerable spots are those that are exposed to outdoor elements such as unheated basements, crawl spaces and garages. If left untreated, frozen pipes can burst, causing extensive damage and expensive repair bills.  

Will Frozen Pipes Thaw On Their Own? 

This is a tricky question because it really depends on how cold it is outside and how much insulation your pipes have around them. Generally speaking, if temperatures remain below 32° F (0° C) for an extended period of time (days or weeks), then no amount of insulation will be able to keep your pipes from bursting due to the expanding ice inside them. However, if temperatures rise above 32° F (0° C) for at least 24 hours, then there is a chance your frozen pipe will thaw on its own without any intervention from you. 

Even if you think your frozen pipe has thawed on its own, it’s important to check for any signs that there may be an underlying issue (such as rust or corrosion inside the pipe). If possible, check each fixture individually by turning on each tap one by one. Listen for any strange noises or changes in water pressure that could indicate an issue with the internal workings of your plumbing system.

What Can I Do To Avoid Frozen Pipes? 

The best way to avoid frozen pipes is by taking preventative measures before temperatures drop too low in your area. Make sure all unheated areas of your home are properly insulated and that you’re running hot water through them regularly during cold weather months. This will give any existing ice a chance to melt away naturally before temperatures drop too low again. 

Additionally, make sure all outside hose spigots are disconnected from their hoses and turned off completely during cold weather months. That way, any residual standing water does not have time to freeze solid inside them!  

You’ll also want to take precautionary measures whenever you know the temperatures will drop. These measures can include everything from opening cabinet doors under sinks to allowing your faucets to continuously drip.

Frozen pipes can be extremely inconvenient and costly if left untreated—and unfortunately they won't thaw on their own! However, with proper precautions, you should be able to avoid this problem altogether! In addition, knowing how to safely thaw out those pesky frozen pipes can save you loads of time and money down the line, as well!

Emergency board ups

8/1/2022 (Permalink)

Emergency Board Up and Roof Tarping

Did you know that some insurance companies deny at least part of a fire insurance claim if it finds that a property owner did not try to protect their property from secondary damage?  This can be avoided by hiring SERVPRO of Plano's reconstruction contractor to do emergency board up and roof tarping.  

After fire damage, many properties experience damaged roofs, windows, doors, and even damaged outer walls.  This type of damage makes a building susceptible to secondary damage. Weather can come in and cause water damage and mold.  Easy access also makes it easy for theft to occur.

For these reasons, we recommend emergency fire damage services as soon as the fire department has left.  

We can:

  • Attach a weatherproof roof tarp.
  • Board up damaged doors, windows, and outer walls.
  • Preform an emergency packout
  • Send a security guard to protect your property 24 hours a day.

After your property is secure, we can inspect your property and begin fire damage cleanup and remediation services as well as rebuilding your property.

Call SERVPRO of Plano today at 972-403-9004

SERVPRO Knows Deodorization

8/1/2022 (Permalink)

Even a small fire can cause odors for years to come if the affected areas are not properly cleaned and deodorized. Fire, Smoke and Soot Damage in your home or business can create unpleasant and potentially permanent problems.

As various materials burn, the smoke produced travels throughout the structure, leaving odorous residues and deposits on surfaces and in hard to reach places.  Unless fast, Professional action is taken, these residues and deposits can cause permanent damage to contents and may result in resurfacing odors.

SERVPRO Professionals provide specialized services that rid your home or business of offensive odors left by fire or smoke damage. Any restorable item in affected areas will be professionally cleaned and deodorized, including: furniture, draperies and upholstery, electronics, art, flooring, walls, ceilings, HVAC air ducts, and more.

SERVPRO Professionals do not cover up lingering odors with a fragrance, they seek out and remove the sources of the odor. Ask SERVPRO of Sherman/Denison to explain the various deodorization methods available and which will work best for you.

Call SERVPRO of Sherman/Denison today at (903-893-7166)