Essential Tips: How To Prevent a Fire At Home

Fires at home happen more often than we would like to think and the risk of a fire in your home is probably higher than you imagine. We don’t want to scare you by saying this, but by convincing ourselves that a fire is unlikely to happen we often get complacent. This is when we stop doing things which can prevent a fire at home and start doing things which ourselves more at risk.

In today’s post we’re going to look at the things you can do to ensure that you do as much as possible to prevent a fire at home.

1. Inspect Your House

Prevent a Fire at HomeIt’s likely that you will need to get somebody out with experience in electrics, gas or heating to fully inspect everything in your home. But by going through the home you can find areas which may be putting your home at risk of a fire. The gas and electrical system in your home are the two areas which are most likely to put you at risk. But your air conditioning and heating units can also cause you problems.

If you haven’t got any experience in these areas then hiring a professional to check them over is always wise if you want to prevent a fire at home.

2. Safe Use of Extension Cords

prevent a fireOne of the main issues with household items is the risk they cause when connected to an extension cord for a long period of time. These cords can often be easily damaged and if they do sustain damage they are very likely to lead to a fire. If you need to connect something to an extension for a long period of time, find a high quality cord which is unlikely to be easily damaged.

Certain equipment (like air conditioners) should never be connected to an extension cord. If the cord overheats it is like an out of control heater and can very easily cause a fire. Extension cords need to be used very carefully if you want to prevent a fire at home.

3. Safe Use of Electrical Goods.

prevent a fireNever leave your mobile phone plugged in overnight – certain devices have been known to start fires when left plugged in for a long period of time. Charging overnight also damages the battery inside the phone itself, most mobile phones only need a 2 hour charging cycle. Turn off as many electrical devices as possible before you go to bed as well.

Check power cords for all of your appliances – missing prongs on plugs and damaged insulation are two things you should look out for. Replace or repair any defective parts on your power cords.

Be careful with space heaters, make sure they have sufficient ventilation and keep any flammable materials as far away as possible from them. You also want to make sure they are well out of the way of any foot traffic in the room.

4. Cooking Safety

Prevent a Fire at HomeTry not to leave the kitchen when you are cooking, but if you must leave for a short period of time – turn off the oven. You can easily turn it all back on when you return to the kitchen. This may sound like it isn’t a big deal, but unattended cooking is actually one of the most common causes of house fires. Avoiding this risk is a great way to prevent a fire at home.

Never, ever cook when you have drank alcohol, used drugs or feel very tired. Eat a ready prepared sandwich or some fruit if you are very hungry. Many house fires have started when someone has started cooking a meal then fell asleep while the food is cooking. Do not put yourself in this situation, go to sleep and cook the food later when you are fully awake.

5. Be Safe With Day To Day Activities

Prevent a Fire at HomeNever sit or lie down when you are smoking, especially if you are tired. Many fires start because someone lights up a cigarette and then falls asleep dropping the cigarettes onto a flammable material. Always smoke stood up, preferably outside in an area where you can safely put out a cigarette.

Any candles should be placed inside a frame with a wire cage which should prevent anything falling onto the flame. It also protects children and animals from hurting themselves by touching the flame. Always put out the flame when you leave the room and relight it when you return. If you use a match to light the candles (or anything else) run it under water to extinguish any invisible flame which could set fire to your trash can.


Many of these tips may seem like common knowledge – but do you already follow them every day? If you do not then ensure that you start to follow each of them religiously. This should ensure that you aren’t putting yourself at any higher risk of a fire than you need to be.

Unfortunately, even the most well prepared person cannot ensure with 100% certainty that a fire will never happen in their house. Install a fire alarm in your home for the safety of you and your family if a fire does start in your house. This also may notify you at a stage where a fire is contained in a certain area and you can still extinguish it.

If a fire does cause damage in your home then you can call Fireservice Disaster Kleenup 24/7 7 days a year. We can restore your home and save many precious items which may otherwise be lost to the fire.

Related Articles

  1. 5 Reasons to Use a Fire Restoration Company
  2. 9 Common Causes of House Fires That You Can Prevent
  3. Fire Damage Restoration Service – Living Room Demonstration

Images: Moyan Brenn, FreeFoto.comDhscommtech

5 Reasons to Use a Fire Restoration Company

There’s nothing worse than the moment that a fire strikes your home or business… apart from dealing with the fire damage afterwards. If your home or business has been unfortunate enough to be heavily damaged by a fire then you need to choose the right people to perform fire restoration services for you.

It’s important that you recognize straight away that a DIY approach is not going to be enough to get everything back up to8992-close-up-of-a-fire-pv scratch! But if you aren’t going to fix it then whose help should you enlist to sort everything out? In this article we’ll look at 5 reasons why you should use a fire restoration company.

You Will Avoid The Heartache

It isn’t just the physical damage of the fire which is destructive. If you choose to clear up the damage yourself then you have to be prepared to find damaged photographs and items which you might have forgotten about but carry a huge emotional significance to you. Finding these items will be a very painful experience for you to go through. It is much better to avoid these moments by allowing someone else to deal with the cleanup so that you can start planning for the future.

You Will Save Whatever Can Be Saved

While some items will be impossible to save, you want to give those items which have a chance of survival the best opportunity to make it. The items which have just about escaped fire damage need to be handled with care by someone who knows what they are doing. You have the best chance of saving your prized possessions if a fire restoration expert is the first person who handles it.

You Can Protect Your Home From Unseen Damage

Fire restoration companies don’t just restore your home from the damage the flames cause – they also protect it from the damage of smoke. The long term damage of smoke can stick around long after it settles and is no longer visible. Once the smoke settles it can leave behind particles which embed into the walls, carpets, and all of your other belongings.

House_fire_in_Beaver_Falls,_rearIf these aren’t fully cleaned they can leave behind very unpleasant odors and potentially cause long-term health problems. Don’t take a chance, call Fireservice Disaster Kleenup and make sure that all of the smoke particles are fully removed from your home.

You Can Protect Your Home From Water Too

It isn’t just fire and smoke which cause damage to your home, the steps taken to put out the fire can cause damage too. Think of all of the water used to put out the flames and consider what kind of damage that my cause to your home. You need to give us a call to take care of the moisture left behind so you don’t end up with mold and all sorts of other nasty problems.

We Can Provide Fire Restoration Whenever You Need Us

Fire can strike at any time so you need to act fast and make sure that you can save as much as possible. Fireservice Disaster Kleenup offer a 24 hour service in Fort Myres, Naples, Charlotte and Sarasota. If you need help from our fire restoration service give us a call – quickly! We will work with you and your insurance so that we can get to work on the fire restoration quickly whenever you need it.

Emergencies don’t wait until morning. Neither do we. 24-Hour first response for water, fire, flood, and storm damage

I had the pleasure of interviewing Tony Greene, our After Hours Emergency Service Manager. Tony is one of four team members who personally answer the phone calls that come into Fireservice Disaster Kleeenup after business hours.

After that phone call, Tony immediately coordinates a team of technicians to get out to the loss. Whether it is a fire, flood or biohazard- he knows who to get to the job.

You might say that Tony is always geared up for his position. He lives in a state of constant readiness for when the next emergency call comes into Fireservice Disaster Kleenup. Our clients are the ones who really get the benefit though; Tony is quick to the loss site and shows up equipped to assist.

He’s known for bringing an optimistic attitude to each disaster and getting right to work. He understands that each job is someone’s misfortune.

“What is most satisfying to me working here at Fireservice Disaster Kleenup is being able to help people out in emergency situations. Our customers are often panicked and reassuring them that this is what I do day to day allows them to relax a bit,” says Tony.

Tony is an IICRC certified Water Damage Restoration Technician and has worked in the restoration business for 12 years. He is also an experienced thermographer, recording moisture readings with a thermal imaging camera and a moisture meter. This ensures the structure of a water loss is dried properly and most important-efficiently.

When he’s not mitigating an emergency, he loves to spend time with his beautiful wife of 10 years and his children. Tony’s daughter is 4 years old and is an aspiring dancer and his son is 6 years old and working on his future career in baseball. Tony enjoys fishing and golfing when he can find the time.


Chuilin Lo
Customer Advocate

Fireservice Disaster Kleenup
P.O. Box 6986
Fort Myers, FL 33911
Office 239-936-1033
Mobile 239-823-7677
Fax 239-936-5420

What are the types of Smoke Damage?

There are two types of smoke damage after a fire, visible soot and invisible odor. All fires are different, making it difficult to gauge the exact type of damage that will occur. However, in most cases, we would recommend allowing a professional service to come in and properly clean the contents of your home to ensure complete odor removal and the saving of seemingly-unsalvageable items.

In most fire situations, there are three restoration alternatives, cleaning, resurfacing, and replacing.

Cleaning is the removal of soot and foreign matters which are not an original part of the material itself. Cleaning is usually the quickest process and the preferred option for the insurance company and homeowner.

Resurfacing is the process of taking a damaged piece of property or existing fixture in the home and redoing the surface of it to make it appear new. For example, if a house is not severely damaged by fire or smoke, but the paint on the walls gets damaged, the contractor can re-paint the walls. The contractor can also provide content refinishing as well as the reupholstering of furniture. Resurfacing is a good option when the homeowner considers certain things as sentimental and/or irreplaceable. Resurfacing can be more costly than cleaning, yet less expensive than replacement. Insurance companies will also recommend this alternative to homeowners.

The last alternative is replacement. Replacement is used when items in the home are destroyed or are beyond economical repair. Replacement is usually the costliest option because the unsalvageable items are being replaced with something new.

Fireservice can be your smoke damage specialist in Southwest Florida. If you have any smoke damage issues feel free to reach us 24/7 at 800-832-3473

How to Make a Claim on a Home Insurance Policy

It can be difficult to make a claim on your home insurance policy. You need to know exactly how to go about it, especially if you have never made a claim before. Most people take out a home insurance policy without really looking at what the policy says. Most only look at what their policy says when it is time to make a claim.

Before calling in claim, go over your policy and get an idea of what is covered. Look up to see if specific damages are covered. Many homeowner policies have rules on different kinds of home damage, where only some types of coverage apply.

It may also make a difference how the damage happened. Even if you have coverage for one peril, the company could try to deny the claim if some other element was involved. Know what you are covered for and evaluate how it applies to your situation.

Look at values of your coverage. Make sure you have the amount of coverage you need to reimburse the actual damages the event caused to your home.

The next step in submitting your home insurance claim is to provide documentation for the damage. You will also need to know the value of appliances, possessions or other damages you incurred.

Take photos of the damage to prove what was done so you can justify your claim amount.

Check back periodically with the claims adjuster about the progress of your claim. Some homeowners find themselves waiting a long time for responses to their claims. Be proactive about handling your claim to get it resolved quicker.

Gene Pigott

Fireservice Disaster Kleenup



Fire Alarm Code Change

In an effort to reduce residential fire fatalities and damage, new smoke alarm regulations will go into effect Jan. 1 for Florida families whose homes have battery-powered smoke alarms.

As outlined in the Florida Building Code, starting in 2015 homeowners must install 10-year, sealed-battery smoke alarms when replacing outdated or non-working alarms or installing new ones.

In Florida, 114 residential fire deaths were reported by U.S. news media between Jan. 1 and Dec. 1, 2014. Of those incidents, 43 percent of the homes did not have alarms or working smoke alarms. Missing or disconnected batteries are a main reason smoke alarms fail to operate in residential fires.

A recent survey conducted ranked late-night low-battery chirps as the top smoke alarm annoyance, with 40 percent of respondents opting to either disconnect the alarm or wait a day or more to replace the battery.

A long-life battery sealed inside an alarm makes it virtually tamper-proof and reduces the risk associated with disabling the alarm. In addition millions of dollars in damage, cleanup, and restoration repairs would have been minimized.

“Millions of Florida homes use battery-operated smoke alarms, and we can’t emphasize enough the importance of upgrading these to help ensure families have working alarms in case of a home fire,” said Jon Pasqualone, executive director, Florida Fire Marshals and Inspectors Association.

“By sealing the battery inside the alarm, the unit becomes tamper-resistant and removes the burden from consumers to remember to change batteries, which will save lives.”

Also in the code changes for 2015, homeowners updating one and two family dwellings and town homes may now use 10-year sealed-battery smoke alarms instead of retrofitting the dwelling with hard-wired models, saving the owner time and money.

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recommends replacing smoke alarms every 10 years, yet industry data from found that nearly a quarter of U.S. homeowners with homes built before 2000 have outdated alarms.

A recent survey by ORC International also found that nearly five times as many Americans knew the shelf life of a Twinkie™ snack cake than the operating life of a smoke alarm. In the survey, 44 percent of respondents correctly identified 45 days as the shelf life of a Twinkie, while only 9 percent correctly noted 10 years as a smoke alarm’s operating life.

Someone dies in a U.S. home fire every three hours, and most of those deaths occur in homes without a smoke alarm or with one that isn’t working.

Long-life sealed battery alarms provide continuous protection for a decade and are recommended by national fire experts, including the National Association of State Fire Marshals.

Ten-year sealed-battery smoke alarms are available at Home Depot & Lowes in Ft. Myers & Naples or online and cost between $25 and $50. Consumers save up to $40 in battery costs over the life of one alarm.

In addition, the alarms contain location-based features, such as an LED light for the hallway model. After 10 years, they will indicate it is time for replacement.

Contact me to learn more

Mike Joyce
Customer Advocate
Fireservice Disaster Kleenup
Mobile 239-823-5049

Fire Damage Restoration Service – Living Room Demonstration

Live Fire Burn 017

Fire Damage Restoration Service

More than 50 Southwest Florida insurance agents and adjusters attended a training event hosted by Fireservice, Conestoga-Rovers & Associates, and the Certified Restoration Drycleaning Network

This event provide two hours of free continuing education credits from fire damage restoration service.  But, more importantly, attendees learned first hand about the importance of knowing how quickly a fire spreads.

“What most people didn’t know until this demonstration is that a fire doubles every thirty seconds”, said Greg Frith of Fireservice.  If a fire can’t be extinguished in the first minute or two, then the chances of getting out of the building safely begin to rapidly diminish.  It’s very important to be prepared to leave a burning room before it becomes a life threatening situation.

At the conclusion of the event, firefighters were on hand to assist with a demonstration of how quickly a small fire can spread and reach flash over temperatures greater than 1,300 degrees!


In the News: Fireservice Restoration Companies Sets Up Christmas Tree Fire Demonstration

A tree that takes hours to decorate can be engulfed in flames in a matter of seconds, especially if not watered correctly.

On Tuesday, December 17th, Fireservice along with other restoration companies such as Conestoga-Rovers & Associates and the Certified Restoration Drycleaning Network hosted a training event for Southwest Florida insurance agents and adjusters.

At the conclusion of the event, firefighters were on hand to assist with a demonstration of the increased risk of having a dry Christmas tree in the home.  Many thanks to Chuilin Lo, Greg Frith, and Jamey Nassef, who helped organize this event.


2013-12-18_Nassef_in_the_News_play It’s a Christmas tradition for many families.

“Just the smell of them brings back a lot of good memories,” said Amanda Jacob, Fort Myers.

But when firefighters look at Christmas trees they see something different: a fire hazard.

“We do run across them every year,” said Captain George Camargo of the Fort Myers Fire Department.

Those fires are a devastating possibility for anyone with a live tree in their home.

“They should put it in water right away,” said Janice Clark of Heath Christmas Trees.

That’s part of the safety advice she gives to her customers.

But few have actually seen the damaging effects of what happens if you don’t take proper care of your holiday tree. That’s why Fireservice Disaster Kleenup, a fire restoration company, put together a demonstration on Tuesday.

Firefighters set two live Christmas trees on fire. The first was well-maintained and watered often.

“It’s still very dangerous, even if you take care to water it and keep it in good shape,” Camargo said.

The second tree was dry and unwatered. It went up in flames in half the time, destroying everything around it.

“To see that is shocking and, hopefully, by other people seeing it, it makes them more aware of it also,” said Jamey Nassef, who works in business development at Fireservice Disaster Kleenup.

Firefighters advise watering your tree every day and watch for anything that could spark.

Those are just little ways to keep the most wonderful time of the year from becoming the most dangerous time of the year. WBBH News for Fort Myers, Cape Coral


Greg_Frith_in_the_newsFORT MYERS, Fla.- Wink News

The Fort Myers fire deparment demonstrated how quickly a fire can start on an improperly maintained Christmas tree. Working along with FIRESERVICE insurance adjusters, fire fighters purposely ignited a tree that had not been watered in more than 2 weeks.

The tree went up in flames in a matter of seconds. They then ignited a living room setting, showing how quickly a small fire can get out of control and the need for people to understand the urgency in getting out of a burning structure.

Ft Myers fire chief Ken Dobson says if you have a real tree, you should check the water levels at the base at least every other day. You should also check to ensure the tree is not turning brown or dropping an excessive amount of needles.

These are signs the tree is drying out and should be discarded. Also, never leave Christmas tree lights on when you are not at home.