Fire Preparedness for Greenville, NC Residents
Greenville, NC residents, do you have a fire escape plan in case of an emergency? Being prepared and having a plan of action could make all the difference in case of an emergency. Here are some tips to help.
Having properly operational smoke detectors in your home can give you crucial time to respond to a fire. Be sure to change their batteries on a frequent basis.
If you keep a fire extinguisher in your home, it is important to periodically check its pressure levels to ensure functionality. Keeping the right type of extinguisher nearby can be another important factor; for a list of the different types of extinguishers and how best to use them, click here.
Have an Escape Plan
Planning out what to do in an emergency with your family every few months helps to keep everyone ready and aware. Going through your home looking at exits together and discussing where to meet if you get separated is a great way to stay prepared.
Keeping a list of family doctors, medicines and medical information such as allergies can help responders provide you with the best possible care. Having family members in your emergency contacts can also enable you or others to quickly get in touch with those you love.
What to do After a Fire
Even if a fire doesn’t directly damage a large portion of your home, the smoke and soot as well as any water dispersed by the fire department may leave you needing professional restoration services. Of course, we here at your locally owned SERVPRO® of Pitt/Green & Craven/Pamlico counties are available 24 hours a day if you or someone you know is in need of expert Fire & Water – Cleanup & Restoration™ services.
Cold weather tips for Greenville NC residents to keep you warm and safe for the holidays
With winter nearly upon us, the temperature is starting to drop to some uncomfortably low levels. Make sure you and your loved ones stay safe and comfortable with these helpful tips.
Cooler temperatures mean even quick trips to the store can be enough to give us the chills. While making us look cool, what we choose to wear when we go outside can also make a huge difference in how well we regulate our temperature and maintain our comfort level.
- Being one of the more well-known methods for a reason, dressing in layers is an effective way to keep your body insulated and warm. Just be sure not to bundle up too much if you’re going to be active—if you start to sweat, it can siphon the heat away from you when you stop to rest.
- Aside from headgear, such as hats and beanies, another common piece of winter attire many of us wear is gloves—but did you know that mittens are actually more effective at keeping your hands warm? If you are prone to getting cold and staying outside for more than a quick walk, mittens might be a great way of keeping those digits delightfully cozy.
- Along with the cold temperatures comes dry air which accelerates dehydration. Be sure to drink plenty of liquids, especially warm ones if possible. This will help you regulate your body temperature as well so maybe it’s time to consider that hot cocoa! In fact, staying warm takes a lot of energy from our bodies, so a little extra sugar in your beverage of choice might seem a little less concerning. Just enjoy in moderation.
For Your Pets
Animals get cold in the winter time too—try and keep them indoors as much as possible to keep them happy, healthy, and ready to put a smile on your face with their unique charm.
- If it proves impossible to bring an animal inside or if a pet will be exposed to cold conditions for a prolonged period of time, be sure to provide a dry, windproof shelter that is capable of keeping them out of the elements.
- When bringing a pet back inside during wet conditions, be sure to dry them thoroughly so they can warm back up and look their best for all your holiday photos.
- Just like you, pets can become dehydrated quickly in winter conditions. Be sure your pets have a fresh, clean and unfrozen water source to keep them going strong.
For Your Home
Preparing your home for cold weather is an easily (and often) overlooked consideration that can quickly escalate into some serious problems. Try some of the following tips to keep your home and family protected.
- One of the most common heating sources for houses and apartments is gas-powered furnaces. While effective at their job and generally reliable and safe, like any mechanical device, there is a chance for different kinds of failures. To avoid the risk of carbon monoxide building up, be sure to put new batteries in existing carbon monoxide detectors or install new ones if your home is not yet equipped.
- Make sure to shut off outdoor faucets and insulate them with foam, as they are more directly exposed to temperature drops. Don’t forget to drain and disconnect any hoses to keep them in good condition for when you need them.
- Cold temperatures can also put your pipes in danger of freezing and consequently bursting from the pressure. Pipes in your outside walls, crawlspace, and attic are especially prone to this, so be sure your pipes are adequately insulated. This could potentially save you and your home from an unexpected repair.
Of course, there is always a chance that even with the best preparation, unforeseen circumstances can happen. Just remember, if you or someone you know is in need of professional cleanup or restoration services, our 24/7 emergency crews here at SERVPRO® of Pitt/Greene & Craven/Pamlico are #HereToHelp.
Keep it Cool Greenville When Things Start to Heat Up
Fires can get out of control easily so be prepared!
Fire Safety for Warm Weather
With the weather warming up, it's good to know some tips regarding how fires can start. Below is a list of ideas to prevent outside fires.
Grilling & Campfires
- Only grill outside; at least 10 feet from siding/railing and out from under eaves and overhanging branches.
- Clean your grill after every use. Grease buildup can cause spontaneous fire growth.
- Keep matches, lighters, and starter fluid out of the reach of children in a locked drawer or cabinet.
- Establish a 3-foot caution radius around grills and campfires. (a “kid-free” zone around grills)
- Try to use long-handled grilling tools in order to prevent overexposure to heat.
- When grilling, wear short sleeves or roll them up.
- When using a gas grill, always open the lid and allow excess propane to dissipate before lighting burners.
- For campfires and charcoal grills, keep a water bucket or hose and a shovel within reach (a fire extinguisher is preferable for gas grills due to possible grease buildup on grill surfaces)
- Tents should be set up up-wind of any fire source and at least 15 feet away.
- Never leave a grill, fire-pit, or patio torch unattended. Make sure it is fully extinguished!
- Place coals in a metal can with a lid once they have cooled.
- Stay informed on local laws and fire regulations.
- Read any warning labels and instructions when using charcoal, lighter fluid, or any equipment involving the use of fire.
Wildfires & House-fire Preparedness
- Know to STOP, DROP, and ROLL if an article of clothing catches on fire.
- Check fire alarms, extinguishers, and sprinklers at the beginning of every month to make sure they are up to code.
- Know how to use a fire extinguisher! Pull the pin, direct nozzle toward the base of flames, and spray in a sweeping motion.
- Assemble an Emergency Kit with three days' worth of food, water, and medical supplies in case of wildfire.
- Sit down with your family to decide an escape-route plan and meeting location in the event of a house fire. Write down the plan and keep it in the emergency kit.
- Create a Safety Zone of 30 to 100 feet around your home. Clear away dry vegetation and brush to prevent fire from spreading.
- Make sure your home and address are clearly visible to help firefighters locate you in the event of an emergency.
Practice these precautions instead of just talking about them! It’s the best way to make sure everyone remembers what to do in an emergency. If you would like to know more, call us today at (252) 329-7205.
Freshen Your Ride!
One of our technicians using a fogger to eliminate odors in a vehicle.
Picture this. It’s 80 degrees outside, you’re getting in your car and ready to head to work or the grocery store or the pool when suddenly it hits you. A whole winter’s worth of stale crumbs, pet dander, and random clutter. Colder weather prevents the growth of odors, but when cars start to heat up it seems like the smells begin to ferment and build up. You suddenly regret all the times you had your dog in the car or scarfed down some fast food while you were in a hurry to pick up a friend or make it to an appointment. Experts say that odor elimination is made easier and more effective by frequent and preemptive carpet and upholstery treatments. That’s where we come in! SERVPRO of Pitt/Greene Counties offers premium deodorization services.
Everyone loves a fresh-smelling car, but sprays and air fresheners can only do so much to mask odor. SERVPRO, however, has the training and equipment to permanently eliminate offensive odors. We are capable of complete odor elimination or even scented deodorizers ranging from “lemon fresh” to “tropical delight” to “cinnamon. With state-of-the-art equipment such as ULB foggers, Ozone Generators, Vapor Sharks, and Air Scrubbers, we’ll fulfill our company motto and make it seem “like it never even happened”. Our services also consist of eliminating the source of the problem, i.e., in-depth cleaning of all surfaces and materials of your vehicle and removal of any kind of unwanted foreign material.
Call Us Today at (252) 329-7205
Are you Deep-Frying your Turkey this Thanksgiving?
With the popularity of turkey frying increasing every year, people are at risk for fryer-related fires and injuries. U.S. fire departments are responding to more than 1,000 deep fire related incidents each year. According to the National Fire Protection Association deep fryer fires result in more than $15 million in property damage each year. Here are some rules to follow when deep frying a turkey.
Don’t Deep Fry a Frozen Turkey Frozen turkeys are full of moisture. Make sure your turkey is completely thawed out because water and hot oil don’t mix well.
Don’t Let Oil Get Too Hot If you see your oil smoking, it is too hot. When oil gets around 400-425-degrees it can catch on fire by itself. So, when deep frying a turkey most oils should stay around 350-degrees.
Don’t Use Too Much Oil When deep-frying a turkey a common mistake people make is putting too much cooking oil in their pot. Overfilling your pot can result in the oil spilling over into the flame on the burner. If you need to figure out how much oil you need try putting your turkey in an empty pot, fill the pot with enough water to cover the turkey. Once you remove the turkey mark the water line.
Don’t Deep Fry Indoors You should never deep-fry a turkey in your house, garage or on a deck. You should always deep fry a turkey in a yard away from anything that’s flammable.
Hopefully, this Thanksgiving will go smoothly. However, if a fire does occur and your Greenville home suffers fire damage, it can be especially devastating. In addition to the fire and smoke damage, your property may have substantial water damage from firefighting efforts. SERVPRO of Pitt / Greene Counties has the specialized fire and water damage equipment and expertise to help you through this tough time. Call Us Today – (252) 329-7205
Why you should Clean Your Gutters!
Fall is here and leaves are beginning to fill your gutters. The main purpose of gutters is to collect rainwater and direct it away from the house. So, when your gutter is clogged with leaves, twigs, and other debris they are no longer functional. If your gutter becomes clogged it can lead to the water finding a different way to drain from your roof. Water taking a different course can cause:
Leaking Basements. If gutters are clogged the extra water will collect around the basement and eventually leak in. A leaking basement can be extremely dangerous because it can cause gas leaks and other pollutants inside of your home.
Cracked Foundation. Foundation cracks occurs when water is absorbed into the home. A cracked foundation isn’t easy to spot and can lead to damage in between walls and eventually cause mold.
Wood rot. Sometimes the foundation of home can be made out of wood. A clogged gutter can cause water to accumulate and overtime the wood will rot.
Staining. Water can overflow from a clogged gutter and cause exterior damage to the home.
It is recommended that you clean your gutters twice a year, once in the spring and a second time in the fall. Taking time to focus on cleaning out your gutters may help keep water out and prevent damage to your home. If your Greenville property has been damaged by water caused by flooding or water leaks, we have the experience, expertise, and equipment to restore your property properly. Our water removal and cleanup process also provides validation and documentation that your property is dry. Call Us Today – (252) 329-7205
Do You Have Renters Insurance?
Did you know that 95 percent of homeowner’s have a homeowner’s insurance policy, but only 37 percent of renters have renters insurance? In most cases, property managers have insurance on the structure, but not the items inside the structure. So, when a tenant gets renters insurance their policy protects them in several different ways.
Personal Belongings. A basic policy will reimburse you if your property is damaged, lost or stolen.
Fire/Wind Damage. Costs associated with fire and damage caused by high winds is covered by a renter’s policy.
Liability Protection. Renters insurance provides liability protection that covers you against lawsuits for bodily injury or property damage done by you or your family members.
Additional Living Expenses. If something were to happen to your apartment and it became unlivable. Renters insurance will pay or help pay for other living arrangements.
Coverage may vary depending on who you have the policy with, but the average renters insurance policy is only $144 per year or $12 per month! So, if you don’t have renters insurance you should look into a policy today. You never know what could happen. We hope you never have to experience damage to your apartment! Luckily, we work with your insurance for a stress free claims process, SERVPRO of Pitt/Greene Counties can help manage the insurance paperwork and process. Call Us Today – (252) 329-7205
How to Prevent and Fight Grease Fires!
Did you know that Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, and Christmas are the 3 biggest days of the year for grease fires? Grease fires occur when cooking oil becomes too hot. First the cooking oil starts to boil, then it starts to smoke followed by a fire. A grease fire is different from a regular fire, so the way you handle it is very important.
How can you prevent grease fires?
- Keep an eye on the food you are cooking regularly. Do not leave it unsupervised for extended periods of time.
- When frying, grilling, boiling, or broiling food, stay in the room.
- Do not leave anything that may catch fire near the stove top.
- Be extremely careful when placing food into hot grease.
- DO NOT ADD WATER TO GREASE.
If your oil does catch fire, complete the following:
- Turn the Heat Off
- Cover the Pot with a Metal Lid - Fire cannot exist in the absence of oxygen. With the lid on (and the heat off), the fire should quickly consume all the oxygen and put itself out. Use a metal lid since glass will shatter.
- Pour Baking Soda
- Spray the Pot with a Class B Dry Chemical Fire Extinguisher –
- Get Out and Call 911 - If the fire does break out of control, don't try to be a hero. Get out and find a phone to call 911.
Hopefully, you never have to experience a grease fire! But, if you do and your Greenville home or business suffers fire damage, it can be especially devastating. SERVPRO of Pitt / Greene Counties has the specialized fire and water damage equipment and expertise to help you. Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage? Call Us Today – (252) 329-7205
SERVPRO Pitt/Greene helps in Texas!
SERVPRO Pitt/Greene Crew headed to Texas!
On September 5th, five of our crew members traveled from Greenville, NC to Corpus Christi, Texas to help with the damages after Hurricane Harvey. Hurricane Harvey was a category four storm that became the first major hurricane to make landfall in the United States since Hurricane Wilma in 2005. Hurricane Harvey made landfall in the US on August 24 in Rockport, Texas. The damage done in Rockport and the surrounding areas was catastrophic and had a huge impact on the locals. Record rainfall flooded largely populated areas and forced more than 30,000 people from their homes. Since Hurricane Harvey impacted massive amounts of people SERVPRO Pitt/Greene Counties will be in Corpus Christi, Texas for a couple more weeks helping to repair damaged homes and businesses. SERVPRO restoration services include: Water Damage Restoration, Fire Damage Restoration, Mold Remediation and Storm Damage Cleanup. SERVPRO Pitt/Greene Counties took the initiative to travel to Texas to help but there are several ways that you can help contribute as well!
Donate money. The best way to help Texans affected by disasters is to donate money to charitable agencies that are experienced in disaster relief. Before giving money to an organization, do your research!
Donate blood. Blood banks have been urging people to donate since demand for blood is rising. Find your local Red Cross and donate!
Open your home. You can offer to provide free accommodations to hurricane evacuees through Airbnb. The service is waiving all fees until Sept. 25.
Adopt a pet. If you’re thinking about adopting a dog or a cat, this could be a great time. Animal welfare organizations in Texas, Florida and around the country are likely to take in pets that have lost their owners. Check with your local animal shelter and adopt!
If you know anyone in Texas who has storm or flood damage Call Us Today at (252) 329-7205 or (252) 637-7274
Vacant homes can be a breeding ground for mold
Vacant homes can be breeding grounds for mold growth. Quite often we are called to a vacant home that is up for sale or the renter has moved out. The realtor/rental agent has come to show the home and finds mold growing on the walls. Mold can be seen growing most often in the upper wall locations, though it is not unusual to see growth at the lower wall levels as well. Closets that have been closed will quite often have the worst mold growth, partly because they are dark and mold loves the dark.
What could cause this? No broken water lines are found, the water is usually turned off to the home. Sometimes the HVAC system is off and that is the source of the problem. Having the heating and air turned off creates a high humidity level in the home. When the HVAC system is off there is no airflow circulating in the home therefore the air becomes stagnant. This is the perfect scenario for mold development.
Here are some tips on preventing mold issues in vacant homes:
- Always keep some heat and air running in the home. Set temperature so heat or air runs periodically during the day.
- Open closet doors to allow for airflow and light to enter.
- A ceiling fan left on low can help circulate the air in the home.
- Open window treatments/blinds at least ¼ open to allow in extra light. Remember, mold loves the dark.
- Visit the home occasionally. Just opening the doors and entering the structure allows for the exchange of fresh air and extra airflow. It’s also a great way to catch any issues before they become serious problems
If your home or business has a mold problem, we can inspect and assess your property and use our specialized training, equipment, and expertise to remediate your mold infestation.
If You See Signs of Mold, Call SERVPRO of Pitt/Greene Counties Today – 252-329-7205