Recent Fire Damage Posts

Avoiding Cigarette Fires in Your Home

7/27/2021 (Permalink)

A cigarette fire in San Francisco, CA or anywhere else it could occur, is preventable by practicing a bit of common sense while indulging in a habit that many find relaxing. Fire cleanup, whether a small convenience or major undertaking, is an activity that no one would find relaxing.

Ways To Avoid Fires from Cigarettes

It is a fact that smoking indoors is a leading cause of house fires. Before lighting up, consider the following tips to keep yourself and your loved ones safe.

• Smoke outdoors. Homes are filled with flammable materials; an additional benefit to smoking outside is that you can avoid the need to deodorize your home from cigarette smoke.
• Do not smoke while taking medications that increase drowsiness. Avoid alcohol consumption that might also make you less aware of your surroundings.
• Make sure to completely put out your cigarette. Cigarette butts can smolder for hours.
• Never smoke in bed. You are more likely to fall asleep there, and bedrooms are typically filled with combustible materials.
• Empty ashtrays regularly to avoid an ashtray fire.
• Use an ashtray with a wide base or with a weighted bottom to prevent tip overs.
• Do not smoke around medical oxygen tanks. They can explode from exposure to sparks or flames.
• Use water to make sure that cigarettes are completely out before putting butts into trash receptacles.
• Do not leave a lighted cigarette unattended. Pets, children, or even gravity could dislodge it and bring it into contact with flammable material.
• Vaping also poses fire and burn risks because electronic cigarettes can, and have been known to, explode.

All fire personnel know that a cigarette fire is an all-too-common occurrence that can be easily avoided with some foresight. Responsible smoking practices can serve the dual purpose of indulging in a personal pleasure and keeping yourself and others safe.

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

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke,or Soot Damages?

Call Us Today 650-931-6060

To schedule a service call, contact SERVPRO of San Mateo today at (650) 931-6060. 

Click here for more information about San Mateo.

Smoke cleanup

6/21/2021 (Permalink)

Smoke and Soot is very invasive and can penetrate various cavities, causing hidden damage and odor. Our smoke damage technicians have the experience and knowledge to inspect and accurately assess the extent of the damage to develop a comprehensive plan of action. 

Smoke and Soot facts:

  1. Hot smoke migrates to cooler areas and upper levels of structure
  2. Smoke flows around pluming systems
  3. The type of smoke may greatly affect the restoration process.

Different Types of Smoke

There are two different types of smoke- wet and dry.

Wet Smoke- Plastic and Rubber

  • Low heat, pudgent odor, sticky, smeary. These are more difficult to clean.

Dry Smoke-Paper and Wood

  • Fast burning, high temperatures, heat rises therefore smoke rises

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

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke,or Soot Damages?

Call Us Today 650-931-6060

To schedule a service call, contact SERVPRO of San Mateo today at (650) 931-6060. 

Click here for more information about San Mateo.

Can Debris Removal Benefit Post-Fire Cleaning of San Mateo Homes?

6/9/2021 (Permalink)

Fire Demolition Our professionally trained technician is removed fired debris in protective gear.

Emergency Services Play a Part in Lessening Loss Effects to Make Restoration Efficient.

Fires can occur from multiple sources, making restoration and recovery of these situations a broad spectrum of action. Often, the initial steps taken to reduce loss and out-of-pocket expenses for customers can be among the most important to maximizing restoration efficiency. Emergency services can encompass multiple actions but often involve debris removal.

How Can Debris Removal Help Your Fire-Damaged Home in San Mateo? 

By removing heaps of charred remnants of the structure and particles like ash and soot, we can help the property in multiple ways after a fire in your San Mateo home. Our technicians recognize the benefits of debris removal to reduce the severity of carcinogenic particles and harsh odors in the environment. Other emergency services include:

The combination of our general contractor license and experienced fire restoration professionals on our SERVPRO of San Mateo team can make fire losses “Like it never even happened.” Call us today at (650) 931-6060.

Ten Campfire Safety Tips to Prevent Personal Injury and Fire Damage

5/26/2021 (Permalink)

Blog Summary: SERVPRO of San Mateo shares campfire safety tips to help San Mateo residents enjoy campfires safely.

The highly trained and experienced professionals at SERVPRO of San Mateo are prepared to respond to any property damage incident, including fire damage, smoke damage, or water damage disaster caused by Northern California wildfires.

In 2020, there were more than 57,000 wildfires in the US, according to the National Interagency Fire Center. These wildfires consumed more than 10.3 million acres, and ninety percent of the fires were caused by humans. The remaining ten percent were largely from lightning strikes. In California, approximately 10,500 buildings were destroyed by wildfires at a cost of over $12 billion. Preventing wildfires can save lives, homes, and businesses. A good place to start is with campfire safety.

How to Enjoy a Campfire Safely and Avoid Fire Damage

These ten tips can help campers and park visitors enjoy activities around the campfire without putting themselves or the surrounding forest in jeopardy.

  1. Be familiar with and abide by local burning regulations.

According to the National Park Service, each park has its own set of rules customized for the unique aspects of the individual park. In general, the guidelines regulate the location and conditions in which a campfire is permissible. Usually, these regulations are clearly posted in a central location in the park, often at the visitor center. If the information is not publicly posted, then ask a park employee or park ranger where the information is available. If a printed copy is available, keep it on hand at all times when in the park. Campfire regulations most likely can be found on the park website, but reception may not be available throughout the park. The best policy is to download the information before entering the park.

How serious is a campfire code violation? What are the consequences for failing to follow the rules and causing a forest fire? Simple violations may be met with a pleasant and professional reminder from a patient park ranger. However, if the careless camper causes a forest fire by failing to follow the safety guidelines, he or she may have to pay stiff fines, pay damages resulting from the fire, and possibly serve jail time. Property damage and the expense of extinguishing even a small forest fire can be financially devastating.

Knowing and closely abiding by the guidelines for campfire safety will go a long way in preventing needless wildfires that harm the forest, destroy property, and sometimes take the lives of both humans and wildlife.

  1. Make sure the weather is safe to enjoy a campfire.

Anything more than a gentle breeze could pose a potential wildfire threat. If rain has been sparse, a spark or ember from a small campfire could burn down a large forest. Wind and arid conditions might mean special rules or restrictions are in effect. Reach out to park officials to learn if any special restrictions apply during the time the camper plans to visit the park. Whether intentional or unintentional, violation of a burn ban or other weather-related rules is frowned upon by park officials.

  1. Make sure that some form of fire extinguisher, especially water, is readily available in case of an emergency.

Pack extra buckets or a water bladder dedicated to extinguishing the campfire. Haul the water to the campsite before igniting the fire. The water will prove helpful if clothes or gear catch on fire from burning embers or sparks. Play it very safe and pack an approved fire extinguisher that will have no adverse effect on the environment if it is discharged.

  1. Only burn wood.

Avoid using the campfire as a garbage disposal for trash such as plastic bags, plastic water bottles, plastic cups and eating utensils, and paper with printing on it. When burned, these items give off noxious gases that can be harmful to anyone downwind who has to breathe the toxic chemicals in the smoke. Disposable diapers, clothing, broken flip-flops, and shoes should be discarded in the assigned trash bin and should not be burned.

  1. Do not use any fire accelerants other than lighter fluid.

Lighter fluid is designed to start a fire in a controlled and safe manner. Avoid spraying or pouring lighter fluid directly on a flame since the fire could flare up. Gasoline can cause a flash explosion that ignites the surrounding vegetation, clothing, and camp gear. An unintentional spill of flammable liquids can also pollute nearby streams.

  1. Once the fire is started, always remain at a safe distance from the blaze.

Clothing, especially vinyl jackets, can catch fire very easily. Once these highly flammable items are ignited, the flames spread quickly and can cause great bodily harm. Wear all-natural fiber clothing when around a campfire. Make adjustments to the fire with a long poker. Wear protective leather gloves if necessary.

  1. Keep an eye on children and pets.

Small children can easily stumble and fall into an open flame of a campfire. While roasting marshmallows, children can become overbalanced and tumble into the blaze. Pets can become agitated if they are not accustomed to being around the heat, flames, and smells of fire.

  1. Never leave the fire unattended.

Before going to bed, completely extinguish the flames and spread out the coals. Cover the embers with water and stir until the fire is totally extinguished. If water is not available, use sand or dirt that is free of debris. Remove all combustible material from around the fire pit for added safety.

  1. Call 911 if the fire is not able to be controlled.

If the flames spread beyond the firepit, call 911 immediately. If reception is not available, seek assistance from area campers. In a worst-case scenario, travel to the nearest visitor center or ranger station for assistance.

  1. Pre-qualify a fire damage restoration company to provide services should the campfire cause fire damage.

Homes and businesses located in areas vulnerable to wildfires are advised to pre-qualify a fire damage restoration company should the worst happen. By choosing a fire damage restoration company beforehand, homeowners are making sure that only one call is needed in an emergency, and they are being proactive in protecting their home, securing their belongings, and escaping the flames.

The experienced team at SERVPRO of San Mateo is ready to serve the needs of homeowners and businesses affected by the Northern California wildfires. SERVPRO of San Mateo, being locally owned and operated, can respond quickly with immediate action, which can minimize damage and prevent advanced secondary damage. The reduction in restoration costs can be significant. The highly trained crews possess the specialized equipment and resources to handle fire, smoke, and water damage caused by the recent Northern California wildfires. The SERVPRO teams are prepared with strategically positioned equipment when a fire emergency arises in the area, including San Francisco, Half Moon Bay, and Redwood City. A fire damage incident is devastating for a family. The traumatic event is disruptive and stressful. The caring experts at SERVPRO of San Mateo guide their clients through the crisis with the deepest empathy and utmost respect.

For more information about San Mateo, CA, fire damage restoration, contact SERVPRO of San Mateo by phone at 650-931-6060 or email office@SERVPROsanmateo.com.

What Deodorization Tactic is Best After a Fire in San Mateo Homes?

4/29/2021 (Permalink)

Hydroxyl Generator The Hydroxyl generator here is being used to remove odors from a kitchen fire.

There are multiple odor removal approaches for smoke and burning smells after a structure fire. 



While there are undoubtedly dozens of potential hazards and problematic loss effects after a structure fire in San Mateohomes, our SERVPRO of San Mateo professionals have the tools and technologies to overcome these needs. As a leading fire restoration company for the area, we understand how something as small as a persistent smoke odor can compromise your comfort in your home. We approach deodorization to eliminate or neutralize odor molecules present in the open environments of the house and trapped in porous materials and contents. 

When you experience fire damage in your San Mateo home, most homeowners fixate on the immediate concerns first, such as debris removal and residues on the surfaces and contents throughout the structure. These challenges can be hazardous and marring to your home if not addressed immediately. Even structural repairs and build back comes before the deodorization process. Cleaning and demolition can agitate trapped odors, making it more absolute to wait and neutralize harsh scents in the property until the final stages of cleaning and restoration. Multiple tools can play a part in removing these noxious smoke and burning smells, including:

  • Ozone Machines
  • Hydroxyl Generators
  • Thermal Foggers

Are There Ways to Reduce Odor Concentrations Before Deodorizing?

Debris removal is one of the tactics that our professionals and contractors utilize during the pre-mitigation emergency services stage. Removing ash and debris from the floors, along with remnants of damaged wall systems and other construction materials, can reduce the concentrations of harsh odors and soot particles to make restoration more efficient. 

When is an Ozone Machine Beneficial for Post-Fire Restoration? 

Even with how incredibly productive ozone machines can be, they can also be damaging to living things, including occupants, pets, and plants. The use of ozone machines creates an unbalanced chemical compound that adheres to odor molecules and neutralizes them on contact. The process can be so destructive to humans, though, that even our restoration professionals must vacate the recovery effort to allow this process to occur on a timer. There are applications for this deodorization technique, as it is one of the staples for odor removal in our SERVPRO warehouse facility in our ozone chamber. This process works best when:

  • No occupants present 
  • There is time to recover property
  • There are harsh odors in open areas and trapped in walls/flooring
  • There are odor-damaged contents 

Do Hydroxyl Generators Help Remove Odors? 

There are several ways that hydroxyl generators are an excellent tool for fire restoration and recovery. Even without using this device for deodorization, it is a unique machine for air quality control. There are a few ways that this deodorization option can be an ideal choice in specific scenarios, and these include: 

  • HEPA Filtration – With an onboard filtration system, hydroxyl generators can pull contaminated and dirty air through the machine and trap particulates as small as 0.3 microns in the built-in HEPA filter. 
  • UV Cleaning – Using the same chemical process that UV rays from the sun use to clean the atmosphere, hydroxyl generators create a chemical reaction being water droplets in the damaged environment and a UV spectrum to clean the space where the device gets placed, including odor compounds. 
  • Safe for Occupants – One of the distinct advantages of using this device over other options is that these machines can run through additional cleaning and restoration processes conducted by our SERVPRO team working in the house. 

Is Thermal Fogging Best for Odor Removal? 

Thermal fogging devices are among the most versatile and widely used for post-fire odor removal for multiple reasons. With the lightweight units that are handheld, technicians can quickly move from one room to the next and cover a broader area in less time. By creating a mist and vapor with a deodorizing product, fine droplets and the gaseous composition can penetrate porous materials like drywall and carpeting to neutralize trapped odors in these structural elements. In addition to these beneficial aspects, thermal fogging is safe for technicians and even occupants of the house, allowing you to begin returning to your home more quickly after the fire restoration.

After a fire loss, one of the most substantial obstacles to making these disasters "Like it never even happened," is often lingering smoke and burning odors. Our SERVPRO of San Mateo team can help with multiple deodorization tools and technologies to overcome these fire loss effects and prevent costlier tear-out and reconstruction. Give our team a call anytime at (650)-931-6060

Should You Upgrade to a Smart Detector?

4/29/2021 (Permalink)

Take A Look At The Different Types Of Smoke Detectors

While households in San Mateo, CA, have used the lifesaving benefits of smoke alarm systems for decades, smart detectors are now on the market. Before you decide whether to upgrade, you can take a look at the different kinds of detectors and how they function.
Detectors fall into these main categories:

  • Ionization
  • Photoelectric
  • Dual-sensor

What Is an Ionization Smoke Detector?
This type of detector has two electrically charged plates with a small amount of radioactive material between them. Electric current flows as the air in the middle is ionized. When smoke gets in the ionized space, it interrupts the ion flow, reducing the current and triggering an alarm. Ionization detectors respond slightly faster to fires that produce lots of flames.

What Is a Photoelectric Smoke Alarm?
A photoelectric alarm has a light beam in a chamber at an angle to the sensor. When smoke enters the chamber, it reflects light onto the sensor and triggers an alarm. Photoelectric smoke detectors are slightly more sensitive to smoldering fires.
The U.S. Fire Administration said both alarms will detect smoldering and flaming fires, but because no one can predict a type of fire, it is best to have both kinds or a dual-sensor alarm for fire safety.

What Is a Smart Detector?
A smart detector uses traditional technology, but it can notify you and alert emergency services when no one is home because it connects to the internet. This technology can save you from a more extensive fire that might require mitigation from an emergency restoration company.
You can also choose a device called a listener, which alerts you when it picks up the specific frequency of an alarm. Another option is a smart battery, which fits an alarm like a 9-volt battery but notifies you if the alarm is activated or the battery is low.
You have many options when it comes to choosing a smoke alarm system. A smart detector offers some advantages over traditional detectors, but the most important choice you can make is to keep a working system in your home at all times

What Can Be Done to Restore My Fire-Damaged San Mateo Home?

4/14/2021 (Permalink)

Fire Restoration Our technicians using dry cleaning sponges to remove soot.

Trained Remediators Can Do Various Things to Restore Your Fire-Damaged Residence. 

Although a fire’s impact might initially seem insurmountable, there are things an experienced remediation service can do to effectively clean up and rehabilitate your property.

When your house burns, the combustion process affects both your home’s interior air and surfaces throughout it. Therefore, San Mateo fire damage restoration experts must take measures to address both of these issues. When cleaning interior air, technicians generally:

Other innovative methods and gear are used to restore fire-damaged surfaces in your home, which include:

  • Using dry cleaning sponges to wipe away non-grease residues
  • Scraping away charred residues with abrasive blasting or wire brushes
  • Removing thick combustion remnants from delicate surfaces with the peroxide active cleaning method
  • Employing advanced foggers and injection devices to deodorize impacted surfaces/materials 

With all that said, if you ever need assistance restoring fire-related damage, call your helpful neighbors at SERVPRO of San Mateo at (650)931-6060.

What Not to Do Before Your Fire Damage Restoration Contractor Arrives

3/26/2021 (Permalink)

Blog Summary: SERVPRO offers residents of San Mateo, San Francisco, Daly City, Burlingame, and other nearby cities advice on what to avoid while waiting for their fire damage restoration team to arrive.

After a fire, it is understandable to want to pick up the pieces and move on as quickly as possible. Having a dependable and reputable fire damage restoration professional inspect and repair the damage as soon as possible is instrumental in that process. 

The fire damage restoration specialists at SERVPRO of San Mateo advise home and business owners not to do anything that may put anyone in danger or cause further damage in the aftermath of the fire. Here is what not to do while waiting for a fire damage restoration company. 

What Not to Do Before Your Fire Damage Restoration Contractor Arrives

Do Not Eat Any Food From the Damaged Property

No matter how well stored, it is imperative not to consume any food from the fire-damaged property. It is easy for smoke, soot, and other airborne contaminants from a fire to get into food. It is best to throw it all away.

Do Not Use Any Electrical Appliances From the Damaged Property

Avoid using electrical appliances such as computers, televisions, stereos, or electronic devices until they have been professionally inspected and cleaned. Large appliances such as refrigerators and ovens should be unplugged. Fires can easily damage electrical components, making them unsafe to use. 

Do Not Walk on Carpeting or Use Furniture From the Damaged Property

Avoid using any soft surface such as carpeting, upholstered furniture, bedding, curtains, and other fabrics until professionally cleaned. Heavy smoke residue and other debris easily seep into these, making them unsafe. SERVPRO of San Mateo employs upholstery and fabric cleaning technicians to handle these issues specifically.

Do Not Attempt To Clean

It is essential to leave any damage just the way it is until everything is documented for insurance purposes. A professional fire damage restoration company, such as SERVPRO of San Mateo, can handle that process and ensure that all insurance requirements are met while they clean and repair the structure. This service includes cleaning up harmful chemicals that firefighters use to put out fires and water damage caused by fire hoses or burst pipes.

Fire Damage Repair and Restoration

Californians know how devastating fire damage can be to homes and other property. SERVPRO of San Mateo offers 24-hour emergency service with specialized fire repair and restoration equipment to handle the damage no matter how severe. They can handle any fire emergency in and around San Mateo, San Francisco, Daly City, Burlingame, and other nearby cities

SERVPRO's professionals treat their customers with empathy and respect, making sure to restore their homes with the utmost care. Their fire damage restoration services include soot and smoke removal, water removal, upholstery and fabric cleaning, odor control, and more. 

About SERVPRO

In the aftermath of a structure fire, SERVPRO of San Mateo can help restore the building using state-of-the-art fire damage restoration equipment. Their experienced technicians have the know-how to resolve smoke, soot, and water damage from suppression efforts fast. 

Give SERVPRO a call, day or night, at (650) 931-6060, or request help online to learn more about the fire damage restoration process.

Contact Information:

SERVPRO of San Mateo

63 Bovet Rd, #149

San Mateo, CA 94402

www.SERVPROsanmateo.com/

What to do in case of a fire

2/24/2021 (Permalink)

Fires are unnerving situations that one hopes never to be put in. Nonetheless, you should be prepared in case a fire breaks out because you may only have seconds to act. The main three aspects to surviving a fire are the following:

  • Learn how to work a fire extinguisher. Learning to protect your home but having a fire extinguisher can minimize the amount of damage to your home. If you don’t have a fire extinguisher, you should go out and get one. For smaller household fires, these tools can be effective in stopping the spread of the fire and save your home. When using an extinguisher, remember to use the P.A.S.S
    1. Pulling the Pin.
    2. Aiming the nozzle at the base of the fire (From a safe distance)
    3. Squeezing the lever (to release the extinguishing material)
    4. Sweeping the nozzle from side-to-side until the entire fire is extinguished.
  • When fires cannot be extinguished easily, or you don’t have one readily available, you should get your family and pets and vacate the building as soon as possible. Having an escape plan and a safe meeting place in case of emergency is important during this process to make sure that all members of your family are safe. Here is what you should do when you need to escape the building:
    1. Move quickly but safely. If there is smoke, you should always crawl on your hands and knees. Smoke rises first along with the ceiling, so you’ll want to crawl quickly to any exit.
    2. Test doors and doorknobs. Before you open any door, you should check the doorknob. If the doorknob is hot the fire is on the other side of the door and that is not a safe exit. If you open a door, do so slowly.
    3. Get out. If you can reach members of the family or pets without risking your safety, do it quickly and get out. Once you have reached the outside of the building, do not re-enter the building. Take a headcount and report to the authorities any missing people or pets.
    4. Call for help. Once you are safe outside, call 9-1-1 for help. Enlist neighbors for assistance if needed.
  • When you can’t escape, this is where prior preparation could save one’s life. It is important that all family members, including children, know what to do in case of a fire within the building. Make sure that children are not afraid of firefighters, making sure they know how they dress in order for them to call out for them. They should never try to hide from a fireperson trying to save their life. Make sure that everyone knows to close doors and cover vents, cracks, or holes. Use a phone, window, or voice to call for help and alert everyone where you are in the building. Have a backup plan in case you are in a building that has multiple levels and finally, if you catch fire, Stop Drop and Roll. Do this until the fire has been extinguished from your clothing.

If your business or home has been affected by a fire, call SERVPRO of San Mateo @ (650) 931-6060.

Fire Damage Cleaning

2/22/2021 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of San Mateo’professionally trained technicians can deep clean and remove odors from your house to make it like new again. Soot and contaminants can leave residue everywhere and heavy odors. Using our air scrubbers, specialty cleaners, and fog machines your house can be “Like it never even happened.”

If you were directly affected SERVPRO of San Mateo is here to help. Removing anything that is unsalvageable and taking care of any water damage from putting out the fire. Our professionally trained technicians will provide a scope of everything that is needed to remediate the damage, so you know exactly what to expect.

There is a two-step process to cleaning a house. The structure includes everything that is built into your property. The structure consists of the walls, floor, ceiling, cabinets, counter, doors, lights, windows, and much more depending on the house.  The contents cleaning is everything you own. The contents are couches, beds, TVs, family photos, clothes, kitchen supplies, and anything you have that was not already nailed down when you got there.

Whether you need structure or content cleaning you can always count on SERVPRO of San Mateo to get the job done.

Should Homeowners Paint Over Smoke Damaged Walls?

2/4/2021 (Permalink)

Minor Fires May Seem Easy to Clean Up but Professionals Are Recommended to Mitigate the Damage in San Mateo.

A fire doesn’t have to be a blazing inferno to cause damage to San Mateo homes. Smoke can spread throughout the home, quickly impacting areas that have no direct fire damage. 

Isn’t Painting the Walls a Quick Fix?

A small trash can fire that gets extinguished fast can leave smoke residue on walls. Homeowners may think a quick wipe down can clean the soot. Then it is a simple matter of repainting. But that may not be the best choice. Using the wrong product can cause further damage. Painting over the sheetrock may not remove smoke odors. Calling a professional fire damage restoration company in San Mateo to handle the problem is the better choice.

What Gets Done in the Case of Sheetrock?

Anytime we are called out to assess a fire-damaged home, our technicians carefully inspect ceilings and walls. Because there are different types of smoke residues, they must determine which type they are dealing with. Adding to the challenge is that there can be more than one type involved in a fire. The four types of smoke residue include:

  • Wet smoke 
  • Dry smoke 
  • Protein smoke
  • Fuel oil smoke

Each of these requires a unique cleaning process, so it is vital to know which kind is present. The smoke that has settled onto surfaces is known as soot. It has a very strong odor. If it has settled onto the sheetrock and you paint over it without removing the contaminant properly, you can trap the smell. Our technicians perform tests to ascertain the soot type. They then clean the surface with the appropriate cleaning products.

Using Sealants

The particulates can become embedded in the sheetrock, and typical cleaning methods alone do not work. Sealants may be used in this case. The sealants encapsulate the odors in a way that covers the foul odors. Priming and painting can take place after that.

Contact SERVPRO of San Mateo at 650-931-6060 for professional fire damage restoration. We’re Faster To Any Size Disaster.

Cleaning Fire Damage

12/23/2020 (Permalink)

Many aspects of a home get affected by a fire. If the fire was outside your home damage can still occur inside the home from soot and odor. If the fire was inside the home water damage from putting the fire out often occurs as well.

The process of restoring a home after a fire can feel overwhelming especially when you do not know everything involved. What is cleaned? How does it get cleaned?

What is Cleaned?

There are two parts to cleaning a house. The structure includes everything a house comes with when you buy it. And the contents, everything you buy to turn a house into your home. The structure consists of the walls, floor, ceiling, cabinets, counter, doors, lights, windows, and much more depending on the house. The contents are couches, beds, TVs, family photos, clothes, kitchen supplies, and anything you have that was not already nailed down when you got there.

How is it cleaned?

At SERVPRO of San Mateo, our certified technicians use advanced technology to restore your home. If the fire was inside of your home, we use moisture readers to find any water damage from putting the fire out. For odor, we use air scrubbers, ozone machines, and fogging to take care of toxins and bad odor in the air. Any soot and residue will be removed using special cleaning products that are effective without being damaging.

Fire Structural Cleaning

10/13/2020 (Permalink)

Just Had a Fire? Here is What to Do

Fire and smoke damage can have a severe impact on your home or business. Fire wreaks havoc on your respective facility and leaves countless necessary repairs in its wake. SERVPRO of San Mateo is committed to immediate emergency response to fire damaged homes and businesses. If you have just experienced a fire, you might be wondering what to do next:

  • Follow all safety instructions provided by your local fire department personnel.
  • Move pets and kids to a smoke-free environment. Smoke contains carcinogenic gases that can affect their health. Start with a neighbor you trust for immediate aid then move them to a temporary home with friends or family until the fire restoration is complete. 
  • If safe to enter the building open all the windows. This will get air moving to push the smoke out of the rooms.
  • Make that call – you will need professional help, so before you get too busy, hire a fire remediation specialist who can start work on getting your home or business back the way it was. Insurance policies require that you take reasonable steps to “mitigate damages,” from tarping a damaged roof to boarding windows and making sure smoldering is stopped. SERVPRO of San Mateo provides Its Best Recommendation estimates, has 51 years of experience, and is available when you need us most. Call 650-931-6060 right now.
  • Call your insurance company. All policies require that homeowners and businesses report their loss “as soon as reasonably possible.”

Structural Cleaning

This process generally starts by deodorizing the residence (See Deodorization & Odor Removal). SERVPRO of San Mateo will then begin the cleaning/restoration process and proceed room by room. We address all structural elements including ceilings, walls, floors, windows, doors, window and door openings, baseboards and trims, cabinets, shelves, counters, and floors. We also take care of appliances, electrical fixtures, and window coverings. When all cleaning services are completed, we will then provide any necessary steam cleaning services for carpets and upholstery.

The type of disaster will determine the type of cleaning methods used. Smoke damage calls for a degreaser that cuts through smoke and soot to restore surfaces to their pre-disaster condition. Contamination situations require a decontaminating detergent. We also use specialty sponges on items that cannot be cleaned using a wet method. Wood soaps and oils are used on wood paneling and cabinets. Other cleaning solutions are also employed such as window cleaners, silver and metal cleaners, acids for masonry as well as many others.

A structural cleaning generally takes only a couple of days depending on the extent of the damage and the size of the premises. We also work very closely with our customers to coordinate the process and to ensure that the results are satisfactory.

Fire Damages and how we can help

9/25/2020 (Permalink)

Fire damage on your property can be emotionally and financially devastating. At SERVPRO of San Mateo, we understand that every hour spent in the cleanup and fire restoration process of your business means lost revenue and productivity. This is why SERVPRO of San Mateo is a trusted emergency restoration company that will walk you through the entire process by dealing with your insurance company as well as your preferences for your business restoration.

Different Types of Smoke

There are two different types of smoke- wet and dry.

Wet Smoke- Plastic and Rubber

  • Low heat, pungent odor, sticky, smeary. These are more difficult to clean.

Dry Smoke-Paper and Wood

  • Fast burning, high temperatures, heat rises therefore smoke rises

Smoke and Soot is very invasive and can penetrate various cavities, causing hidden damage and odor. Our smoke damage technicians have the experience and knowledge to inspect and accurately assess the extent of the damage to develop a comprehensive plan of action. 

Smoke and Soot Facts:

  1. Hot smoke migrates to cooler areas and upper levels of the structure
  2. Smoke flows around plumbing systems
  3. The type of smoke may greatly affect the restoration process.

    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. 

    Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damages?

    Call Us Today 650-931-6060

    Fire, Smoke and Soot Damage

    9/17/2020 (Permalink)

    Fire losses must be handled with special care since many types of materials can fuel a fire. Large amounts of water are required to extinguish the blaze, thus introducing concerns of corrosion, mold, and mildew growth

    Smoke and Soot damage is very invasive and can penetrate various cavities, causing hidden damage and odor. Our smoke damage technicians have the experience and knowledge 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 San Mateo 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

    Dry Smoke – Paper and Wood

    • Fast burning, high temperatures

    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. 

    Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damages?

    Call Us Today 650-931-6060

    San Mateo Smoke and Soot Cleanup

    7/1/2020 (Permalink)

    Smoke and Soot Damage can cause a pervasive odor in your home. Smoke and Soot Damage can cause a pervasive odor in your home.

    Smoke and soot are very invasive and can penetrate various cavities within your home, causing hidden damages and odors. Our smoke damage expertise and experience allow us to inspect and accurately assess the extent of the damage to develop a comprehensive plan of action. 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 San Mateo 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 to the specific conditions. Our crew has fire damage training and expertise to help you and your family through this tough time. Once the fire department leaves, your San Mateo home may suffer from water damage caused by firefighting efforts. We have the specialized fire and water damage restoration training, personnel, and equipment to handle fire and water damage and can quickly restore your home to pre-fire damage conditions.

    SERVPRO of San Mateo understands how extremely devastating fire damage can bring for your family and your home. It’s a stressful and confusing time for everyone, so you’ll need a caring expert to guide you through this crisis. Our professionals at SERVPRO of San Mateowill always treat you with respect and empathy, and we’ll always treat your home and belongings with tremendous care.

    Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage? Call Us Today – (650) 931-6060

    We’re Faster to Any Size Disaster


    SERVPRO of San Mateo is dedicated to responding immediately to your San Mateo fire damage emergency. A faster response is the key to help prevent additional damage and reduce the restoration cost. We provide emergency cleaning and restoration services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week—including all holidays. You can expect an immediate response time, day or night. No damage is too large or too small for SERVPRO of San Mateo. Our staff is highly trained with the power and knowledge to restore your property "Like it never even happened."

    Need Emergency Service? Call Us 24/7 – (650) 931-6060

    Office Fire Damage at a Dialysis Clinic

    7/1/2020 (Permalink)

    Due to a fire which occurred on the back alley of the building, fire sprinklers inside the building burst. Due to a fire which occurred on the back alley of the building, fire sprinklers inside the building burst.

    Fire damage is especially devastating for a business or commercial property. In addition to the fire and smoke damage, significant water damage from firefighting efforts and fire suppression systems may occur. Every hour spent restoring your business back to pre-fire condition is an hour of lost revenue and productivity. If your business experiences a fire loss, call the fire and water damage restoration experts and we’ll respond immediately to get you back to business.

    We’re Fire and Water Damage Specialists


    As fire and water restoration specialists, we have the training, experience and specialized equipment necessary to restore your home or business. We are committed to providing superior service while restoring your property back to pre-fire condition.

    What To Do After A Fire


    When fire damage occurs SERVPRO of San Mateo is aware of how devastating and stressful it can be. After you have contacted our offices we understand you might want to know what are the next steps. The first thing we strongly recommend to stay out of the building and stay out in a safe area.

    • Limit movement in the home to prevent soot particles from being embedded into upholstery and carpets.
    • Keep hands clean so as not to further soil upholstery, walls, and woodwork.
    • Place clean towels or old linens on rugs, upholstery, and carpet traffic areas.
    • If electricity is off, empty freezer and refrigerator and prop doors open.
    • Clean and protect chrome with a light coating of petroleum jelly or oil.
    • Wash houseplants on both sides of leaves.
      Change HVAC filter.
    • Tape double layers of cheesecloth over air registers.

    Faster to Any Size Emergency

    SERVPRO of San Mateo is dedicated to responding immediately to your San Mateo fire damage emergency. A faster response is the key to help prevent additional damage and reduce the restoration cost. We provide emergency cleaning and restoration services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week—including all holidays. You can expect an immediate response time, day or night. No damage is too large or too small for SERVPRO of San Mateo.

    How to be ready for in home fire

    6/23/2020 (Permalink)

    There’s also the danger of fires starting in your home from electrical shorts or kitchen fires. The most common cause of in-home fires tends to start from cooking fires. 

    According to The Red Cross, “If a fire starts in your home you may have as little as two minutes to escape. During a fire, early warning from a working smoke alarm plus a fire escape plan that has been practiced regularly can save lives.” Two minutes! That’s barely enough time to grab your pets and a couple of beloved belongings and escape. Not to mention dealing with the worry about your home due to fire damage because of fires in San Mateo, Burlingame, Hillsborough, and San Francisco.

    Here are the top 7 ways to prepare for a home fire from redcross.org:

    • Install the correct number of smoke alarms. Install a smoke detector inside each bedroom, outside each sleeping area and on every level of the home, including the basement. On levels without bedrooms, install alarms in the living room (or den or family room) or near the stairway to the upper level, or in both locations. Test your smoke alarm or smoke detector once a month and replace the batteries at least once a year.
    • Teach children what smoke alarms sound like, and teach them what to do when they hear one. Practice with them twice-yearly.
    • Ensure that all household members know at least two ways to escape from every room of your home and that you determine a family meeting spot outside of your home in the case of a fire.
    • Establish a family emergency communications plan and ensure that all household members know who to contact if they cannot find one another or cannot meet at the predetermined family meeting spot.
    • Practice escaping from your home at least twice a year, and at random times. Press the smoke alarm test button or yell “Fire“ to alert everyone that they must get out.
    • Make sure everyone knows how to call 9-1-1, no matter how young.
    • Teach family members to STOP, DROP, and ROLL if their clothes should catch on fire.

    Northern California Fires

    10/11/2019 (Permalink)

     This past week PG&E announced its public safety shutoff to help prevent wildfires. At this time it is highly recommended we are all prepared by having enough to last the whole shutoff. Making sure safety measures have been discussed and emergency bags are prepared. With the power being shut off does not grantee fires will no longer happen. Therefore we must always be prepared. When you have fire damage to your home or business SERVPRO of San Mateo is ready to help. San Bruno mountains near South San Francisco have recently suffered from a fire that rapidly spread around 4-5 acres. Each fire damage situation is a little different. When various materials burn, the soot and residue they create differ greatly and require a specific cleaning procedure. If your home or business suffers from fire and smoke damage call SERVPRO of San Mateo. After you have contacted our offices we understand you might want to know what are the next steps. Making sure you are 100% safe is the most important. Avoid going into the building especially if the ceiling or walls are falling apart. If you have been hurt by the damage we highly recommend contacting the medicals as soon as possible. Since the air can be extremely smokey we recommend wearing a mask to avoid inhaling any smoke particles. The fire restoration process begins when you call us. Our SERVPRO of San Mateo representative will guide you through the crisis and may ask several questions to help us better understand the equipment and resources. Something very important when dealing with fire damage is there is always damage to the structure of the building and then there is damage to the contents, being any belongings. In a fire damage inspection, our highly trained technicians will be meeting you onsite to asses the damage. This helps frame the entire restoration plan to how many days it will take to how much equipment is needed as well as people. In this step you can expect to have a walkthrough with our technician, they will be labeling, taking pictures and doing a scetch of the affected areas. At this time paperwork will also need to be signed. Everything will be reported back in scope and recommendations to you and or your insurance company. Once all has been approved and work is ready to be scheduled. Always keep in mind not all jobs are the same, especially with fires. If immediate Board-Up is needed they will start with this. Then proceed with tear-outs and pack out. Some may require processing for belongings to be cleaned to make sure all smoke and soot has been removed properly. Some damages may have secondary damages like water damage. Whether you have the fire, water or both types of damages SERVPRO of San Mateo is always ready to help. The way we do this is by having our emergency crew ready as soon as you call.SERVPRO of San Mateo provides emergency cleanup and Restoration services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week—including all holidays. 

    Fire Damage vs. Smoke Damage: What's the Difference?

    9/16/2019 (Permalink)

    There's fire damage. There's smoke damage. And while smoke damage is often the result of a fire, a property doesn't necessarily need to experience fire damage in order to endure smoke damage.

    Make sense? In case it doesn't or in case you just want to learn more about the main differentiators between smoke and fire damage, you've come to the right place. Here at SERVPRO of San Mateo, we specialize in restoring fire and smoke damaged properties to preloss conditions in California's Bay Area. We work closely with property owners to correctly assess each job we're on, so we can come up with the best restoration plan. And while we specialize in mold remediation and water damage restoration as well, fire and smoke damage restoration jobs are among the jobs we take the most pride in. Why? Because they're the jobs that we truly have the opportunity to impact lives the most. 

    Fire Damage 101

    It's estimated that there's a fire every 24 seconds in the United States. This shouldn't be a surprise when you consider the wide variety of factors that can cause a fire. There are household issues, such as faulty electrical wiring, to human error, such as cooking mistakes or failure to turn an iron off or blow a candle out. Then there are fire-causing factors that are less controllable, such as wildfires, downed electrical wires during inclement weather and even lightning strikes. 

    Regardless of the cause of the fire, the steps we take to restore property remain the same. We'll respond quickly and work with local fire authorities to determine when the property has been secured and when it's safe for us to enter and properly assess things. Following our assessment, this is the process that we take at SERVPRO of San Mateo, which abides by industry standards on every job:

    • Remove damaged components: Some components are damaged beyond repair and/or restoration and may need to be discarded. Other contents can be packed out and sent for cleaning and restoration if applicable. 
    • Remove damaged building materials: We'll likely have to remove all damaged building materials that were affected or else risk the property's structural integrity. This means that any floorboards, studs, paneling, etc. that were impacted will have to go. Evaluation of the property's structure is always one of the most important parts of any evaluation.
    • Treat: If any of the property's structure that was impacted can be saved, we'll take the right steps to deodorize and decontaminate it.
    • Rebuild: Following our assessment and material removal, we'll then work to rebuild the property to preloss condition. Depending on the severity of the fire, fire restoration jobs can take anywhere from weeks to months.

    Smoke Damage 101

    Like we said in the introduction, you don't necessarily have to have fire damage in order to have smoke damage. Grease fire or small, easily extinguished fire might not result in any structural fire damage, yet it could leave certain rooms of a home or building engulfed in a smokey mess. Smoke damage can result in more than just smell — it can lead to discoloration of building materials and contamination too.

    From there, intensive deep cleaning and deodorizing begin. Fabrics and window dressings that are removable can usually be washed and salvaged, as can most other hard goods and contents in an affected area. In-place building materials, such as flooring and drywall, are often more difficult to properly clean. Non-porous surfaces such as hardwood and tile can simply be hand cleaned. Carpets can be professionally deep cleaned in most circumstances. Even drywall can be salvaged from smoke damage about 80 percent of the time. Drywall typically only requires removal if the smoke has gotten behind it. Following deep cleaning, an odor counteractant is deployed to the affected area and the HVAC system is cleaned so that there's no recontamination of the area (or cross-contamination to other areas of the building). 

    As we said, fire and smoke damage has the potential to be among the most intense jobs that we're likely to take, but they're also among the most rewarding. For more information on our smoke and fire damage restoration services, call the Bay Area restoration experts, SERVPRO of San Mateo, today.

    The Leading Causes of Fire Damage

    8/30/2019 (Permalink)

    Every 24 seconds in the United States, a fire department is called out to a property fire. And while deaths from structural fires have plummeted since the 1970s thanks to the widespread installation of smoke detectors and other early recognition technologies, fires continue to be one of the most common causes of property damage in America. According to data from the National Fire Protection Association, nearly 500,000 home fires occurred in 2017, totaling about $6.5 billion in total property damage. SERVPRO of San Mateo is there to handle any of your fire and/or smoke damage restoration needs in California's Bay Area, yet we thought it would be worthwhile to take a closer look at the leading causes of fire in the United States and in the state of California. 

    The Leading Causes of Fire

    While some fires are accidental and preventable, others are largely out of the control of home and business owners. While every state is susceptible to property fires of both kind, California — especially it's Bay Area — is unique in that in addition to accidental, preventable fires, the region is highly susceptible to property damage from wildfires. And there's been an increase in the number of wildfires that occur each year in the state. Before we get into some of the other causes of fire, wildfires demand a special focus.

    Because of how dry California can get at certain parts of the year, wildfires may occur due to a variety of reasons. Even something as minor as a vehicle spark can lead to a brush fire, which can escalate into something much bigger. Other causes of wildfires include downed power lines from storms, out of control campfires, fireworks, even shooting on a gun range. Unfortunately, arson is also believed to be a major source of wildfires as well. 

    Here's a look at some of the other leading causes of property fires:

    • Cooking equipment: Ovens, stoves, overheating pots and pans, deep fryers, and more are the leading cause of fires for homes and businesses every year. Most of the time, cooking-related fires occur when food preparation is left unattended.
    • Heating: Portable furnaces are the biggest risk when it comes to heating fires, largely because many home and business owners place them too close to flammable objects and materials. To stay as safe as possible, it’s suggested keeping any flammable objects and materials at least 3 feet away from portable furnaces.
    • Smoking: In dry climates, cigarette ash can be all that’s needed to start a brush fire. But in the home, smoking can lead to fires as well. Cigarettes that aren’t put out properly can eventually spread, possibly coming into contact with flammable materials. Smoking is always best for an outdoor environment, as smoke clings to building materials and may require smoke damage restoration and deodorization at a minimum. But even outdoors, it’s essential to properly put out cigarettes — especially in the California Bay Area.
    • Electrical issues: Are fuses blowing out or tripping more than you think they should? Do lights occasionally dim in the home when you draw power from another source? If so, it’s the sign of an electrical issue within your home, and the issue could potentially be dangerous.
    • Other causes of fire include candles, children playing with matches or lighters, and lightning.

    If Your Property Has Been Fire Damaged, Contact SERVPRO of San Mateo

    As a professional, full-service restoration firm, the Bay Area experts at SERVPRO of San Mateo know how much a property fire can uproot a business or a family. It's why we're dedicated to prompt response and putting a plan in action to help restore any type of property to preloss condition. We abide by all industry standards in our efforts, including the IICRC 700 Standard for Professional Fire and Smoke Damage Restoration and the S740 Standard for Professional Restoration of Fire and Smoke Damaged Personal Items. Most importantly, when responding to a fire damage situation, we'll ask home or business owners one simple question: "What's your most important thing?" Then, we'll do everything we can to recover and restore the item in an effort to make the recovery a little bit easier.

    Fire damage restoration doesn't work that just any restoration contractor will take on — it takes a special kind of company and professionals that exhibit both expertise in the area and compassion to work with affected occupants. For more information on SERVPRO of San Mateo and fire damage restoration in the Bay Area, contact us today.

    San Mateo Smoke and Soot Cleanup

    6/10/2019 (Permalink)

    Smoke and Soot Damage Can Cause a Pervasive Odor in Your San Mateo Home.

    Smoke and soot are very invasive and can penetrate various cavities within your home, causing hidden damages and odors. Our smoke damage expertise and experience allow us to inspect and accurately assess the extent of the damage to develop a comprehensive plan of action. 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 San Mateo 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 to the specific conditions. Our crew has fire damage training and expertise to help you and your family through this tough time. Once the fire department leaves, your San Mateo home may suffer from water damage caused by firefighting efforts. We have the specialized fire and water damage restoration training, personnel, and equipment to handle fire and water damage and can quickly restore your home to pre-fire damage conditions.

    SERVPRO of San Mateo understands how extremely devastating fire damage can bring for your family and your home. It’s a stressful and confusing time for everyone, so you’ll need a caring expert to guide you through this crisis. Our professionals at SERVPRO of San Mateo will always treat you with respect and empathy, and we’ll always treat your home and belongings with tremendous care.

    Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage? Call Us Today – (650) 931-6060

    We’re Faster to Any Size Disaster


    SERVPRO of San Mateo is dedicated to responding immediately to your San Mateo fire damage emergency. A faster response is the key to help prevent additional damage and reduce the restoration cost. We provide emergency cleaning and restoration services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week—including all holidays. You can expect an immediate response time, day or night. No damage is too large or too small for SERVPRO of San Mateo. Our staff is highly trained with the power and knowledge to restore your property "Like it never even happened."

    Need Emergency Service? Call Us 24/7 – (650) 931-6060

    Blood Services Office Fire Dmage in San Mateo

    5/28/2019 (Permalink)

    Due to a fire which occurred on the back alley of the building, sprinklers inside the building burst causing fire damage and water damage.

    Fire damage is especially devastating for a business or commercial property. In addition to the fire and smoke damage, significant water damage from firefighting efforts and fire suppression systems may occur. Every hour spent restoring your business back to pre-fire condition is an hour of lost revenue and productivity. If your business experiences a fire loss, call the fire and water damage restoration experts and we’ll respond immediately to get you back to business.

    We’re Fire and Water Damage Specialists


    As fire and water restoration specialists, we have the training, experience and specialized equipment necessary to restore your home or business. We are committed to providing superior service while restoring your property back to pre-fire condition.

    What To Do After A Fire


    When fire damage occurs SERVPRO of San Mateo is aware of how devastating and stressful it can be. After you have contacted our offices we understand you might want to know what are the next steps. The first thing we strongly recommend to stay out of the building and stay out in a safe area.

    • Limit movement in the home to prevent soot particles from being embedded into upholstery and carpets.
    • Keep hands clean so as not to further soil upholstery, walls, and woodwork.
    • Place clean towels or old linens on rugs, upholstery, and carpet traffic areas.
    • If electricity is off, empty freezer and refrigerator and prop doors open.
    • Clean and protect chrome with a light coating of petroleum jelly or oil.
    • Wash houseplants on both sides of leaves.
      Change HVAC filter.
    • Tape double layers of cheesecloth over air registers.

    Faster to Any Size Emergency

    SERVPRO of San Mateo is dedicated to responding immediately to your San Mateo fire damage emergency. A faster response is the key to help prevent additional damage and reduce the restoration cost. We provide emergency cleaning and restoration services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week—including all holidays. You can expect an immediate response time, day or night. No damage is too large or too small for SERVPRO of San Mateo.

    Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
    Call Us Today – (650) 931-6060

    Fire Damage in San Mateo Home

    5/17/2019 (Permalink)

    Recently, SERVPRO of San Mateo got a call from a friend of our family. She informed us that her neighbors had a fire in their home the night before and needed some help getting it cleaned up.

    Upon arriving at the scene of the incident we realized it was going to be a large undertaking, including cleaning many contents, inventorying and disposing of contents, and removing most of the interior walls and fixtures of the house. The smoke damage and odor was so bad the homeowners were lucky to be out and safe from harm. 

    SERVPRO of San Mateo understands how extremely devastating fire damage can bring for your family and your home. It’s a stressful and confusing time for everyone, so you’ll need a caring expert to guide you through this crisis. Our professionals at SERVPRO of San Mateo will always treat you with respect and empathy, and we’ll always treat your home and belongings with tremendous care.


    We’re Fire and Water Damage Specialists

    As fire damage and water damage restoration specialists, we have the training, experience and specialized equipment necessary to restore your home or business. We are committed to providing superior service while restoring your property back to pre-fire condition.

    Our Fire Damage Restoration Services

    Every fire damage situation is a little different and requires a unique solution, but the general process stays the same. When various materials burn, the soot they create differs greatly and requires a specific cleaning procedure. The steps listed below illustrate our process for the “typical” fire damage restoration. Learn more about our fire damage restoration process.

    1. Emergency Contact
    2. Inspection and Fire Damage Assessment
    3. Immediate Board-Up and Roof Tarp Service (if needed)
    4. Water Removal and Drying (if water damage is present)
    5. Removal of Smoke and Soot from All Surfaces
    6. Cleaning and Repair
    7. Restoration

    Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
    Call Us Today – (650) 931-6060

    SERVPRO of San Mateo Fire and Smoke Damage

    5/16/2019 (Permalink)

    Smoke and Soot Damage can cause a pervasive order in your San Mateo property.

    SERVPRO of San Mateo understands how extremely devastating fire damage can bring for your family and your home. It’s a stressful and confusing time for everyone, so you’ll need a caring expert to guide you through this crisis. Our professionals at SERVPRO of San Mateo will always treat you with respect and empathy, and we’ll always treat your home and belongings with tremendous care.

    Smoke and soot are very invasive and can penetrate various cavities within your home, causing hidden damage and odor. Our smoke damage expertise and experience allow us to inspect and accurately assess the extent of the damage to develop a comprehensive plan of action.  

    Have Questions? Call Us Today – (650) 931-6060

    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 San Mateo 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

    Every fire damage situation is a little different and requires a unique solution, but the general process stays the same. When various materials burn, the soot they create differs greatly and requires a specific cleaning procedure. The steps listed below illustrate our process for the “typical” fire damage restoration. Learn more about our fire damage restoration process.

    1. Emergency Contact
    2. Inspection and Fire Damage Assessment
    3. Immediate Board-Up and Roof Tarp Service (if needed)
    4. Water Removal and Drying (if water damage is present)
    5. Removal of Smoke and Soot from All Surfaces
    6. Cleaning and Repair
    7. Restoration

    Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
    Call Us Today. 650-931-6060

    Fire Loss

    1/9/2019 (Permalink)

    Fire and smoke damage can have a severe impact on your home or business. Fire wreaks havoc on your respective facility and leaves countless necessary repairs in its wake. SERVPRO of San Mateo is committed to immediate emergency response to fire damaged homes and businesses.

    Our team is certified and trained in fire and smoke restoration and can capably handle any amount of damage you’ve experienced. Be sure to call us first to handle the job. We will communicate directly with your insurance company to enable the project to reach completion as smoothly as possible.

     WHAT WE DO

    The first thing we do when on site is to identify all affected materials and the source of any odors. The only way to properly clean smoke and fire damage is to be extremely thorough. Ash residue is easily disturbed and can spread through the building with ease, causing nearly everything to need restoration. We will identify what can and cannot be salvaged and will remove any built-up ash residue that is coating surfaces. Over time, ash builds up in layers, and may eventually form into a lacquer-like consistency. Once this is done, we will locate the source of the odor, and treat it with specialized detergents that are formulated for neutralizing this kind of odor. 

    Fire Damage Services

    • 24 HOUR EMERGENCY SERVICE
    • EMERGENCY BOARD UP SERVICE
    • STRUCTURAL RESTORATION
    • SMOKE DAMAGE CLEAN UP
    • CONTENTS PACK OUT & CLEANING

    Fire Restoration

    12/21/2018 (Permalink)

    This Fire Loss was caused by a power outlet

    Fire Damage Restoration

    If you’ve just experienced a fire or smoke damage at your home or business, then you need professional help. That’s why we’re here at all hours, every day of the year to help you recover – 24/7, 365 days a year.

    For emergency service, call (650) 931-6060 right now.

    As certified fire remediation experts, we use the most advanced processes and equipment in the industry and apply systematic best practices honed over the 50-plus years we’ve been in the business. We put the highest value on open communication and customer service and document the entire fire damage restoration process.

    Just Had a Fire? Here’s What to Do Now.

    If you’ve just experienced a fire, you might be wondering what to do next:

    • Follow all safety instructions provided by your local fire department personnel.
    • Move pets and kids to a smoke-free environment. Smoke contains carcinogenic gases that can affect their health. Start with a neighbor you trust for immediate aid then move them to a temporary home with friends or family until the fire restoration is complete. 
    • Open all the windows. This will get air moving to push the smoke out of the rooms.
    • Make that call – you will need professional help, so before you get too busy, hire a fire remediation specialist who can start work on getting your home or business back the way it was. Insurance policies require that you take reasonable steps to “mitigate damages,” from tarping a damaged roof to boarding windows and making sure smoldering is stopped. SERVPRO of San Mateo provides Its Best Recommendation estimates, has 51 years of experience and is available when you need us most. Call 650-931-6060 right now.
    • Call your insurance company. All policies require that homeowners and businesses report their loss “as soon as reasonably possible.”
    • You know it is time to recover, but where to start? View our "After the Fire: Cleaning Up" to learn more about recovering from a fire – both the structural damage and emotional damage.

    There are also tasks you do not want to attempt on your own due to the toxic gases or risk of smoldering ash.

    • Don’t use electrical devices like appliances, stereos or TVs until the fire restoration service deems them safe.
    • Don’t wipe down the walls, wood trim and furniture or any other absorbent surface.
    • Don’t sit on or move upholstered furniture.
    • Don’t consume any food product, including canned items that were exposed to the extreme heat of the fire.
    • Don’t turn on home systems like the furnace or air conditioner.
    • Don’t water your indoor plants until you wipe down the leaves to remove soot.

    Fire restoration services have the proper safety equipment to get the work done without the risks.

    Why SERVPRO of San Mateo?

    We are one of the top fire damage restoration service providers in the U.S. How do we do this? By providing fast, quality, start-to-finish restoration services with the help of respectful, trustworthy and trained service professionals. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s Corporate Training Facility to regular IICRC industry certifications, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property. Our training program includes the following:

    • IICRC Training
    • Employee Certification Training
    • Initial Franchise Training
    • e-Learnings
    • Continuing Education Classes

    Common Fire Scenarios

    At SERVPRO we’ve seen it all and fixed every kind of fire and smoke damage imaginable. Here are the most common causes of fires and smoke damage at homes and businesses:

    • Lint buildup in dryers
    • Electrical fires (faulty/aged wiring, overloaded electrical outlets)
    • Kitchen grease fires (and stove burners accidentally left “on”)
    • Accidental igniting of flammables, such as gasoline, propane, lighter fluid and solvents

    There’s a SERVPRO of San Mateo on the Other Side

    Having a fire or a smoke damage incident in your home or place of business is certainly upsetting, and you might be feeling a sense of shock. The good news is that our customers learn that there is a SERVPRO of San Mateo at the end of this. You will, too. Call today and know that you are on the way back to “normal.”

     Call our 24/7 emergency service line at (650) 931-6060. We’re ready to help.

    Fire Restoration Structural cleaning

    12/21/2018 (Permalink)

    Structural Cleaning

    Different types of disasters leave different types of residues present on structural elements. A fire deposits smoke and soot. A water disaster can cause mildew or mold. Structural cleanings are one of the cornerstones of SERVPRO of San Mateo.

    This process generally starts by deodorizing the residence (See Deodorization & Odor Removal). SERVPRO of San Mateo will then begin the cleaning/restoration process and proceed room by room. We address all structural elements including: ceilings, walls, floors, windows, doors, window and door openings, baseboards and trims, cabinets, shelves, counters and floors. We also take care of appliances, electrical fixtures, and window coverings. When all cleaning services are completed, we will then provide any necessary steam cleaning services for carpets and upholstery.

    The type of disaster will determine the type of cleaning methods used. Smoke damage calls for a degreaser that cuts through smoke and soot to restore surfaces to their pre-disaster condition. Contamination situations require a decontaminating detergent. We also use specialty sponges on items that cannot be cleaned using a wet method. Wood soaps and oils are used on wood paneling and cabinets. Other cleaning solutions are also employed such as window cleaners, silver and metal cleaners, acids for masonry as well as many others.

    A structural cleaning generally takes only a couple of days depending on the extent of the damage and the size of the premises. We also work very closely with our customers to coordinate the process and to ensure that the results are satisfactory.

    The Institute of Inspection Cleaning & Restoration Certification (IICRC) certifies SERVPRO of San Mateo in the area of Fire and Smoke Restoration.

    Fire Damage Restoration

    12/12/2018 (Permalink)

    This Fire was cause by electrical wiring in attic.

    The nature of a fire creates special problems worthy of comprehensive treatment. SERVPRO of San Mateo has the trained personnel and equipment to handle all aspects of fire damage, large or small.

    Fire losses must be handled with special care since many types of materials can fuel a fire. Large amounts of water are required to extinguish the blaze, thus introducing concerns of corrosion, mold, and mildew growth

    After fire or smoke damage occurs, many conditions need to be addressed immediately. The procedures involved following a fire loss are:

    • Debris removal
    • Onsite dry down
    • HVAC Cleaning
    • On-location and off-location contents cleaning

    Debris Removal

    Depending on the severity of the fire damage, debris removal is the first step in remediating a fire loss. SERVPRO of San Mateo will conduct debris removal and some initial deodorization to gear up for the rest of the remediation project that will follow.

    Drying Out Water Damage

    Our highly trained technicians are prepared to handle the water and moisture damage that lingers after a fire is put out. Depending on the condition of the property damage, if it is safe to do so, a thorough dry down of the area will be initiated for mold prevention, to halt mildew growth, and prepare for the next step of the fire damage restoration.

    Deodorization and Cleaning

    Most fire-affected buildings and their contents show evidence of severe soot fallout and contamination, as well as a lingering odor that must be treated professionally. Extensive cleaning of the facility’s HVAC system, furniture contents, walls, and fixtures is necessary to avoid exposure to lingering particulate and smoke that can irritate the eyes and throat. To properly remediate these conditions, we remove odor from the area and clean remaining contents, plus the main air heating and exhaust systems (HVAC).

    San Mateo Fire Damage

    2/2/2018 (Permalink)

    This fire was caused by an Internet Router Box. SERVPRO of San Mateo was able to attend this Fire Loss

    Fire Damage Repair and Restoration

    In addition to fire, smoke, and soot damage, your Bay Area home may also suffer from water damage as a result of the firefighting efforts. This type of damage can be especially upsetting and destructive for your family to process. You may feel stressed, confused, and vulnerable, so you’ll need a caring expert to guide you through this crisis. We’ll treat you with respect and empathy, and we’ll always treat your home and belongings with care.

    SERVPRO of San Mateo specializes in fire and water damage restoration. We have the specific damage restoration training, personnel, and equipment and can quickly restore your home to pre-fire condition.

    Please refer to our Fire Damage Tips - Until Help Arrives Guide and follow these tips to protect yourself and your property.

    Have Questions? Call Us Today – (650) 931-6060

    Why Choose SERVPRO of San Mateo?

    We’re Faster to Any Size Disaster 

    When your San Mateo home or business experiences fire or smoke damage, you need professional help quickly. SERVPRO of San Mateo is dedicated to responding immediately, which helps to prevent secondary damage and to reduce the cost of restoration.

    Learn More

    We’re Fire and Water Damage Specialists

    There is no substitute for training and experience. As fire and water damage specialists, our business is built upon fire and water restoration expertise. We have the knowledge and the specialized equipment to get your property back to pre-fire condition.

    Learn More

    Our Restore vs. Replace Mentality

    We focus on restoring versus replacing because restoring the affected areas of your property is substantially less costly than demolishing and replacing those areas. This “restore first” mentality also allows us to get your home or business back to pre-fire condition quicker and with less disruption.

    Learn More

    Locally Owned Company with National Resources

    SERVPRO of San Mateo is locally owned and operated and we are proud to be part of this community. We are also part of a national network of over 1,700 Franchises with special Disaster Recovery Teams placed strategically throughout the country to respond to large-scale fire, water, and storm disasters.

    We proudly serve San Mateo, CA, and surrounding areas.

    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. When various materials burn, the soot and residue they create differs greatly and requires a specific cleaning procedure. The steps listed below illustrate our process for the “typical” fire damage restoration. Learn more about our fire damage restoration process.

    1. Emergency Contact
    2. Inspection and Fire Damage Assessment
    3. Immediate Board-Up and Roof Tarp Service (if needed)
    4. Water Removal and Drying (if water damage is present)
    5. Removal of Smoke and Soot from All Surfaces
    6. Cleaning and Repair
    7. Restoration

    Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
    Call Us Today – 
    (650) 931-6060

    Fire and Smoke Clean Up San Mateo

    2/2/2018 (Permalink)

    Fire Damage in Hillsborough, San Mateo County

    Recently, SERVPRO of San Mateo got a call from a friend of our family. She informed us that her neighbors had a fire in their home the night before and needed some help getting it cleaned up. Upon arriving to the scene of the incident we realized it was going to be a large undertaking, including cleaning many contents, inventorying and disposing of contents, and removing most of the interior walls and fixtures of the house. The smoke damage and odor was so bad that the homeowners were just lucky to be out and safe and have some of their belongings determined to be salvageable. We started working on the house immediately and have been working on cleaning contents and removing smoke odor for almost two weeks now. Make sure to stay tuned to our “before and after pictures” page to see the work we can do if fire and smoke damage affects your home or business. 

    SERVPRO of San Mateo specializes in:  water remediation, flood mitigation, carpet cleaning, tile and grout cleaning, mold removal, fire damage, and smoke clean up, disaster restoration, storm response, and air duct cleaning. SERVPRO of San Mateo has been serving San Mateo and the surrounding cities for quite some time. We are licensed and insured. SERVPRO of San Mateo (650)931-6060,  http://www.SERVPROsanmateo.com/

    San Mateo Smoke and Soot Cleanup

    2/2/2018 (Permalink)

    Smoke and Soot Damage Can Cause a Pervasive Odor in Your San Mateo Home

    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 San Mateo 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.

    Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
    Call Us Today. 650-931-6060

    Fire in San Mateo Commercial Building

    2/2/2018 (Permalink)

    Commercial and Residential Mixed-Use Building damaged by Fire and Water

    Over 20 units in a San Mateo mixed-use property that included medical offices, other commercial businesses, and residential units suffered water damage due to a sprinkler system activation.

    The sprinkler system was activated due to a fire in one of the residential apartment units. Luckily, SERVPRO of San Mateo was on the scene right away and set up air dryers, dehumidifiers, and other drying equipment to help restore the property.

    Because SERVPRO of San Mateo's highly trained technicians were on job quickly, they were able to start the water restoration process quickly, minimizing damage to the drywall and flooring in the units.

    SERVPRO of San Mateo is a highly-rated water restoration company, fire restoration company, and smoke/soot restoration company. In addition, SERVPRO of San Mateo offers cleanup services. 

    For 24-7 service and free estimates, please call SERVPRO of San Mateo at (650) 931-6060 for any and all water damage, fire damage, smoke or soot damage you may experience. We are always here to help!

    Fire Safety and Prevention in California

    2/2/2018 (Permalink)

    Fire Safety Tips to Prevent Unnecessary Damage

    With the fires that raged in Napa Valley and Sonoma county, fire safety, both from wildfires and accidental home fires, is a real concern for millions of California residents, including those in San Mateo, Burlingame, Hillsborough and San Francisco, California.

    Due to a combination of reasons, including weather conditions (including lack of rain and lack of humidity), increasing temperatures (global warming), and simple human error or carelessness (tossed cigarettes, illegal bonfires, intentional fire-setting), wildfires have been increasing in number and intensity in recent years. This means that experiencing fire damage is a real possibility for many Californians, including those in many parts of Santa Clara County, California.

    There’s also the danger of fires starting in your home from electrical shorts or kitchen fires (the most common cause of in-home fires). According to The Red Cross, “If a fire starts in your home you may have as little as two minutes to escape. During a fire, early warning from a working smoke alarm plus a fire escape plan that has been practiced regularly can save lives.” Two minutes! That’s barely enough time to grab your pets and a couple of beloved belongings and escape. Not to mention dealing with the worry about your home due to fire damage because of fires in San Mateo, Burlingame, Hillsborough, and San Francisco.

    Here are the top 7 ways to prepare for a home fire from redcross.org:

    • Install the correct number of smoke alarms. Install a smoke detector inside each bedroom, outside each sleeping area and on every level of the home, including the basement. On levels without bedrooms, install alarms in the living room (or den or family room) or near the stairway to the upper level, or in both locations. Test your smoke alarm or smoke detector once a month and replace the batteries at least once a year.
    • Teach children what smoke alarms sound like, and teach them what to do when they hear one. Practice with them twice-yearly.
    • Ensure that all household members know at least two ways to escape from every room of your home, and that you determine a family meeting spot outside of your home in the case of a fire.
    • Establish a family emergency communications plan and ensure that all household members know who to contact if they cannot find one another or cannot meet at the predetermined family meeting spot.
    • Practice escaping from your home at least twice a year, and at random times. Press the smoke alarm test button or yell “Fire“ to alert everyone that they must get out.
    • Make sure everyone knows how to call 9-1-1, no matter how young.
    • Teach family members to STOP, DROP and ROLL if their clothes should catch on fire.

    The Red Cross also recommends you follow these fire-safe habits:

    • Keep items that can catch on fire, like flammable clothing, paper, toys, etc. at least three feet away from anything that gets hot, such as space heaters.
    • Smoking paraphernalia is the leading cause of residential fire deaths in the United States. Please do not smoke. If you have to smoke, take precautions: Smoke outside, choose fire-safe cigarettes, don’t smoke in bed, don’t smoke when drowsy or medicated, or if anyone in the home is using oxygen. That’s a disaster waiting to happen.
    • Use deep, sturdy ashtrays and douse cigarette and cigar butts with water before disposal.
    • Talk to children regularly about the dangers of fire, matches and lighters and keep them out of reach.
    • Turn portable heaters off when you leave the room or go to sleep.
    • Never leave a burning candle unattended, even for a minute.

    Following these fire-safe habits won’t protect you against wildfires, but there are steps you can take to help reduce the risk of fire damage to your home from a wildfire, such as those that have recently been burning in both Northern California and Southern California.

    In the last two years, over 67,000 wildfires have been reported across the country each year, many in California. Yearly, wildfires destroy over 4,000 structures, with 3,000 of them residential. As real estate development expands into forests and grasslands, the chances of wildfire related property damage goes up.  

    You can’t fight back a wildfire that is encroaching on your home or business, but you can take steps to protect yourself and your property. Learn how you can help protect your home or business from a wildfire.  Keep you and your family safe and know how and when to evacuate. Learn more in the second part of this blog post, to be continued next week.

    If you already have suffered fire damage and need fire restoration, please call SERVPRO of San Mateo at (650) 931-6060 for a free estimate. Our highly trained technicians use advanced equipment to make it “Like it never even happened.”

    Smoke cleanup

    10/19/2017 (Permalink)

    Smoke and Soot is very invasive and can penetrate various cavities, causing hidden damage and odor. Our smoke damage technicians have the experience and knowledge to inspect and accurately assess the extent of the damage to develop a comprehensive plan of action. 

    Smoke and Soot facts:

    1. Hot smoke migrates to cooler areas and upper levels of structure
    2. Smoke flows around pluming systems
    3. The type of smoke may greatly affect the restoration process.

    Different Types of Smoke

    There are two different types of smoke- wet and dry.

    Wet Smoke- Plastic and Rubber

    • Low heat, pudgent odor, sticky, smeary. These are more difficult to clean.

    Dry Smoke-Paper and Wood

    • Fast burning, high temperatures, heat rises therefore smoke rises

    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. 

    Have Questions about Fire, Smoke,or Soot Damages?

    Call Us Today 650-931-6060