Recent Posts

Testing Your Smoke Detectors

1/23/2023 (Permalink)

Smoke rising by a smoke detector. Regular testing of smoke detectors is essential for ensuring that they are in good working condition and will alert you to a fire.

Smoke detectors are an essential part of any home's fire safety system. These devices detect smoke and alert you to the presence of a fire, giving you valuable time to evacuate your home and call for help. However, like any other piece of equipment, smoke detectors need to be tested regularly to ensure that they are working properly. In this blog post, we will discuss the importance of testing your smoke detectors and provide step-by-step instructions for how to do so.

Why Test Your Smoke Detectors?

Smoke detectors are designed to alert you to the presence of a fire, but if they are not working properly, they cannot do their job. Regular testing ensures that your smoke detectors are in good working condition, so you can be confident that they will alert you in case of a fire.

It is important to test your smoke detectors because it ensures that they are in good working condition and will alert you to a fire. Regular testing helps you identify and fix any problems with your smoke detectors, such as low batteries or faulty sensors before they become a bigger issue. Additionally, testing your smoke detectors regularly will give you peace of mind, knowing that in case of an emergency, your smoke detectors will work to protect you and your loved ones.

How to Test Your Smoke Detectors

Testing your smoke detectors is a relatively simple process that can be done in just a few minutes. Here are the steps you should follow:

1. Locate your smoke detectors. These devices should be located on every level of your home, including the basement and attic, as well as outside each sleeping area.

2. Press the test button. Most smoke detectors have a test button that you can press to simulate smoke and test the alarm. Press the button and wait for the alarm to sound.

3. Check for any issues. If the alarm does not sound, or if it sounds weak, it could indicate a problem with the device. Check the batteries, and if they are low, replace them. If the problem persists, the detector may need to be replaced.

4. Repeat the process for all smoke detectors in your home.

It's important to note that most smoke detectors will have a test button and you should follow the manufacturer's instructions for your specific device.

In conclusion, regular testing of smoke detectors is essential for ensuring that they are in good working condition and will alert you to a fire. By following the steps outlined in this blog post, you can be confident that your smoke detectors are working properly and will keep you and your family safe. Don't forget to test your smoke detectors at least once a month and change the batteries twice a year.

If your Weymouth home experiences a fire, SERVPRO of Weymouth, Hingham, and Quincy is here to help you get back to normal. Give us a call when you need mitigation and restoration work!

Top Causes of Kitchen Fires

12/25/2022 (Permalink)

flames while cooking Keep flammable materials away from heat sources

Top Causes of Kitchen Fires

Cooking is an essential part of the daily routine in any home. Whether you're preparing a meal, baking a cake or brewing coffee, these activities take place in the kitchen. However, it's not just about making food — cooking can also be dangerous if left unattended. According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), there are more than 50,000 residential fires each year caused by cooking equipment.

Cooking appliances

Electrical fires are a serious risk in the kitchen. Properly grounding your wires, using surge protectors, and unplugging appliances when they're not in use will help to reduce fire risks.

When you're cooking, be sure to keep an eye on your pans, ovens, and appliances. Some common cooking equipment that commonly starts fires include:

• Ovens

• Stoves

• Microwave ovens 

It's also important to avoid electrical shocks, especially with young children around who may be unable to recognize the danger of touching exposed wires or when an appliance suddenly gets hot. Always keep small appliances away from water, including during cleaning and draining; if cleaning is necessary, unplug them first before wiping down surfaces with a damp cloth.

Remember that most electrical fires start with frayed or damaged wiring—if you notice any signs of wear on your cords or plugs (such as cracking plastic), replace them immediately!

Unattended cooking

Unattended cooking is one of the most common causes of kitchen fires. Cooking oil, butter, and other fats can catch fire if you leave them sitting on a hot stove for too long. It's best to keep an eye on the food you're cooking and never leave it unattended. If you want to make sure that this doesn't happen to you, turn off the heat when something starts smoking or burning. Even if it looks like your pan is perfectly safe, turn off the stove just in case!

If you leave a pan unattended on a burner while it is still hot, it may ignite as well. It’s also important not to overfill your pans with food when cooking—this increases the likelihood that steam will rise off your pan before being released through its vents. This is an excellent way for grease fires to start!

Heating equipment

A kitchen fire can occur when you use anything that produces heat, such as a range, oven or microwave. To prevent a fire:

  • Keep flammable materials away from heat sources.
  • Check all appliances for damage before using them. Do not use damaged appliances until they have been repaired and restored to their original state.
  • Never operate cooking devices while you are sleeping, absent or otherwise distracted by other tasks in the kitchen (this includes cell phones). Always pay attention to what is happening around you so that you notice if something starts to burn or smoke too much before it becomes dangerous

Kitchen fires are a year-round danger.

As soon as you step in the kitchen, you're at risk of having a fire. That's why it's important to be prepared and know what to do if your home catches on fire.

Kitchen fires are more common in the winter because people often use their ovens more during this season than any other time of year. Oven fires can start when something ignites inside a cooking appliance or while you're grilling outside on your patio grill.

Summer is also known for its high temperatures and hot days, which means that there's plenty of heat around your stovetop and oven —and plenty of potential sources for ignition too! If left unattended, these hot surfaces present risks for starting an oven fire or even grill flare-up when combined with grease or oil spilled onto them by careless preparation techniques. 

To prevent a fire:

  • Keep flammable materials away from heat sources.
  • Check all appliances for damage before using them. Do not use damaged appliances until they have been repaired and restored to their original state.
  • Never operate cooking equipment while you are sleeping, absent, or otherwise distracted by other tasks in the kitchen. Always pay attention to what is happening around you so that you notice if something starts to burn or smoke too much before it becomes dangerous.

Kitchen fires can be risky, but they don’t have to be. With the right safety measures in place, you can enjoy your kitchen without worrying about it catching fire.

How to Stop your Kitchen Sink from Leaking

11/2/2022 (Permalink)

Man under kitchen sink If you try fixing your sink and it still doesn't work call a professional.

How to Stop your Kitchen Sink from Leaking

If you've got a leaky kitchen sink, don't panic. This is one of the most common plumbing problems, and it's often easy to fix yourself. The first thing you need to know is where the leak is coming from, but this can be tricky because your drain may not have any water in it when there's no leak. That said, here are some common causes for leaks as well as ways to diagnose them:

Turn off the water supply to your sink.

The best way to do this is by turning off the faucet in the sink and then turning off the main water supply valve. This will stop all of your water from going anywhere, including into your kitchen cabinets or drain pipes.

Shut off the garbage disposal. If you have a garbage disposal and it's turned on, shut it down now so that it doesn't make any noise while you're working on fixing things below ground level. If it makes too much noise or feels like something else has stopped working altogether, see if there are any other things in your home that need attention; otherwise, just leave everything alone until later when we'll come back here with some tips on what needs repairing next!

Tighten the fittings

If you're experiencing a leak at the base of your kitchen sink, it could be because the fittings are loose. To stop this from happening, remove the faucet and tighten its nut by turning it clockwise with an adjustable wrench. Then replace the faucet.

If this doesn't fix your problem, there may be other issues at play—but don't worry! 

Tighten the faucet connection

If you've ruled out the above causes of dripping water, it's likely that your faucet is leaking. To fix this problem, use an adjustable wrench or pliers to remove the nut that holds the faucet to your sink, then adjust it so that it's tight enough but not too tight. Finally, put everything back together and try running some hot water through both taps: if they continue to drip after they're turned off again (or don't turn off at all), you'll need more TLC from a professional plumber.

If you have a leaky kitchen sink, try tightening the various parts of it yourself before calling in a plumber.

If you've got a leaky kitchen sink and want to try fixing it yourself before calling in a plumber, start by using the proper tools. This means using the correct wrench or spanner for each part of your sink. If you force something that's too large onto a part (like forcing an oversized pipe wrench onto an inch-long pipe), then you're more likely to strip the threads or break off pieces of plastic than if you'd used something smaller. Having said that, don't be afraid to use some elbow grease—you should not be able to move any piece without applying some pressure!

If after trying everything above repeatedly and being unable to stop your sink from leaking, call a plumber. 

Kitchen sinks can be difficult to fix, but the good news is that you don’t have to call in a plumber every time. You can try and do it yourself by tightening the fittings and faucet connection until there is no more leaking. If your sink still leaks after trying these methods, then it may be time to call a professional!

How do I Create an Office Fire Escape Plan?

10/24/2022 (Permalink)

picture of people leaving a building Creating a fire escape plan is an essential part of any office building.

Creating a Fire Escape Plan

What is a fire escape plan? Is it necessary?

Creating a fire escape plan is an essential part of any office building and is incredibly important for the safety of you and others on your property. This can be more complicated than it sounds, but it's important to understand the dangers that employees face while working in your business. With proper planning and preparation, you can safely evacuate everyone from your building if there's ever a fire or other emergency.

Identify all possible exit routes.

Identify all possible exit routes. Include escape routes from each room, common areas, and conference rooms as part of your plan. Also, consider the following:

  • Determine the best escape routes from all locations in the building, including each room, common area, and conference room.
  • Identify the exits closest to where you work, eat or sleep.
  • Keep your workplace fire escape plan with you at all times in case of an emergency.
  • Review your personal evacuation plan with co-workers when new employees join your company or if there are changes to an existing plan (e.g., remodeling).

Designate a "safe area" to meet outside of the building.

Designate a "safe area" to meet outside of the building. A safe area is a meeting place outside of the building, where everyone can gather in case of emergency. It should be large enough to hold all employees and should be accessible from your fire escape route (if you have one). Identify one or more meeting locations in case you are separated from others during an emergency.

Walk through your fire escape plan with all employees.

Review and practice your fire escape plan with all employees. Walk through the plan with them, making sure everyone knows their role and where to meet if they need to evacuate the building.

Make sure you conduct regular fire drills as well as review your fire escape plan on a regular basis. By practicing these skills together, you can effectively reduce the risk of injury and death for both staff and visitors during an emergency.

Show staff evacuation routes

  • Show staff evacuation routes.
  • Walk staff through the plan.
  • Practice the plan.
  • Make sure everyone understands the plan.

Conclusion

Your company in Weymouth, MA, and surrounding areas should always have a fire escape plan in place before any emergency arises. This will help ensure that everyone knows what to do in the event of an emergency and can quickly get out of harm's way. The fire department will also be able to access your building more easily because they'll know exactly where it's located.

Putting a Stop to a Toilet That Won’t Stop Flushing

8/27/2022 (Permalink)

Flushing toilet Don’t ignore a toilet that continues to flush.

Stopping a Toilet That Won't Stop Flushing

A toilet that won’t stop flushing may not seem like a big deal, but toilet overflow can pose serious problems not just for the bathroom but for other parts of your commercial property as well. As a toilet flushes, more water enters the toilet and can possibly spill over, seeping into the floor or the wall.

This can lead to water damage and mold growth in your building in Weymouth, MA. Water on the floor is not only a potential slipping hazard, but it may also contain odors that impact the usability of your bathroom. It’s important to stop a toilet from continuous flushing that can lead to flooding.

Fixing the Flushometer

The flushometer Is a component that controls the flushing on a commercial toilet. Here’s how you can prevent a toilet flood by fixing the flushometer:

  • Use a flathead screwdriver to turn off the flushometer on a manual system. This is usually to the left or the right of the toilet’s pipe connection to the wall.
  • Remove flange cover.
  • Remove the gasket and clean thoroughly, including the weep hole. You may need to use a small, thin object to really clean the weep hole.
  • Replace gasket and flange cover and turn on flushometer.
  • An automatic flushometer may require servicing.

Consult a professional water damage restoration specialist to make repairs and remediation for items impacted by toilet overflow. These pros are fully equipped and experienced in making any repairs necessary to bring your space back to pre-damage conditions. If any specialized techniques or approaches are needed such as odor control and disinfection, they will know best how to apply them.

Trusting the Professionals

While addressing a flushing toilet is something you may be able to do yourself, you should leave the cleanup to a professional remediation service. Your custodial staff cannot fully repair and remediate any spaces or objects impacted by the water damage of toilet overflow. If your business or that of your tenants’ is interrupted by the damage, the professionals can minimize the repair period.
Don’t ignore a toilet that continues to flush. It can lead to serious damage, requiring commercial building restoration.

3 Ways To Mitigate Storm Damage at Your Business

8/22/2022 (Permalink)

Damaged roof due to storm If damage, such as missing shingles, does occur it’s best to contact a local storm damage restoration service

Three Tips To Protect Your Building From Storm Damage

If you're worried about a storm causing a roof leak at your Weymouth Landing, MA, place of business, then you may like to know that there are a number of ways to mitigate storm damage. Here are three things you can do to help protect your company.

1. Know the Weather

It’s a good idea to keep an eye on the weather reports for your area. This way you will know ahead of time if a storm is approaching and what its projected severity is. This will allow you to prepare if the storm has high winds or heavy rain that could cause a damaged roof or freezing temperatures that might lead to a pipe break.

2. Prepare Ahead of Time

When you know a storm is coming you can take steps to prevent a roof leak or other possible damages. If you are worried about a particular part of the property you can board or tarp over the space for additional protections. Trim back dead trees or overhanging branches to prevent wind from tearing them loose and throwing them into the building. Additionally, you may want to clean up loose landscaping or move any lawn decorations or loose signage inside until the storm has passed.

3. Act Quickly

If damage, such as missing shingles, does occur it’s best to contact a local storm damage restoration service as quickly as possible in order to help make repairs. Acting quickly can allow these repairs to be made before additional damage has a chance to happen. It’s also helpful to board or tarp over the damaged area to protect it until repairs can be completed.

Mitigating the possibility of roof leaks at your place of business is possible. Remember to keep an eye on the projected weather, prepare the property ahead of time, and act quickly to make repairs if damage does occur. Remember, if you have any questions a professional can help.

The Basics of Insurance Deductibles

8/17/2022 (Permalink)

Flooded commercial building Flooded building in Weymouth, MA.

Here's How Storm Deductibles Typically Work

Your commercial insurance coverage depends on the specific needs of your business in Weymouth, MA, and several factors can play a role. If, for example, you live in a Special Hazard Flood Area, storm insurance may be mandated by law. Some type of flood coverage is probably a good idea if your area experiences frequent precipitation or rainy seasons.

The amount of money you end up paying with a storm policy is a delicate balance of your premium and your deductible. Essentially, the deductible is the money you must pay out of pocket before the coverage kicks in. 

Typical vs. Trigger

Usually, an insurance policy will have a standard deductible. That is, there is a set amount that you will be expected to pay for restoration services or repairs before the insurance company will contribute. Some storm insurance, however, has a trigger clause that activates a different set of rules for the deductible if a storm is nigh. Required conditions for a storm deductible to be triggered often include:

  • Official storm watch or warning issued by the National Weather Service
  • The intensity of the storm defined
  • The specific time frame during the storm when the damage occurred

Standard vs. Percentage

A standard deductible is a fixed amount that the policyholder must pay before insurance pays for any of the damage. In areas that are particularly susceptible to storm damage, however, a percentage deductible may be applied to minimize the risk for the insurance company. Percentage deductibles take the total value of the property and base the deductible on that amount. These deductibles can be as low as 1% of the total value of the property or as much as 5%, depending on the level of risk the location of the property poses.

No matter what kind of deductible your insurance company offers for your storm insurance, it is still a good policy to have. Your insurance agent can detail the benefits of purchasing a storm policy for your business.

How Mold Spreads and Ways To Handle It

7/28/2022 (Permalink)

Mold damage behind drywall in a home. Mold damage behind drywall in a home.

Spreading mold is a massive problem for any homeowner, especially if it involves the notorious black mold. Should an infestation be discovered at your house in East Weymouth, MA, you must immediately contact a residential mold removal service to perform mold remediation before it worsens. Here are some facts explaining why mold advances and what you should do after encountering its presence.

How Mold Spreads

Mold in lower levels rises to upper floors because of a phenomenon known as the Stack Effect. As warm air rises, a vacuum is created that causes lower-level air to be sucked upward. Contaminated rising air includes:

  • Mold spores
  • Fungal odors
  • Dust mites

Once spores infest a room, a new mold infestation can begin colonizing within two weeks or less. Because they are often organic, household building materials such as wallpaper and paint provide enough sustenance for mold to keep growing indefinitely.

What To Do If You Have Spreading Mold

Determine the cause of your mold, typically a direct source of moisture. Correct the issue promptly. For instance, if the trigger is a leaky pipe, hire a plumber to repair it.

Once your mold source has been eliminated, dry the area with dehumidifiers. Use fans only if mold is not visible; otherwise, spores can become airborne. Open windows and doors to let breezes flow in. After dryness has been achieved, start cleaning. Before handling mold-riddled items, don protective gear, such as goggles, plastic gloves, and masks.

Plaster, insulation, and ceiling tiles are porous and need to be tossed. Put them in plastic bags before dragging them through your home. A vacuum outfitted with a HEPA filter can be used on non-porous and semi-porous elements such as metal, glass, and solid wood.

The best way to make certain spreading mold has been destroyed is by hiring a professional mold removal service. Utilize their expertise to clear your house of this pernicious problem.

All About Flood Cuts

7/20/2022 (Permalink)

Flood Cuts performed on drywall Flood cut performed in a North Weymouth, MA company

Understanding What A Flood Cut Is

If you have recently had to speak with a flood cleanup company, you may have heard some terms you didn't understand. Dealing with flooding is a stressful time, but if you know what some of these terms mean, the cleanup process can seem a little easier. Here are the answers to three common questions about one of these terms you will hear when in search of a restoration company, flood cuts.

1. What Is a Flood Cut?

A flood cut is when the contractor has to cut and tear out the drywall from your property. This cut is 12-18 inches above where the flood damage stops on your wall. A flood cut is necessary to remove the drywall affected by flooding and address moisture problems in the wall.

2. Is It Always Necessary?

This cut is not always necessary. If the wall was damaged by clean water, the wall can generally be saved. It is a different story if your walls faced contamination by sewage or other types of dirty water. In these instances, the rule is generally anything that has been touched, must be removed.

3. Can My Walls Be Saved Without Removing the Drywall?

If your walls were affected by clean water and there is no insulation behind the drywall, you may be able to dry out the area using minimally invasive procedures. For instance, your contractor may be able to drill holes in the baseboard and insert airtight hoses. These hoses will pass dry air into the wall, drying out the studs and drywall without making a mess. However, if you have insulation, a flood cut will be necessary.

One way to relieve the stress of dealing with flooding is to understand what a flood cut is and if it will be necessary. However, trusting your commercial storm restoration professionals to take care of the situation is the best way to reduce headaches when cleaning your building in North Weymouth, MA.

Avoiding House Fires: The Rules of Candle Use

7/12/2022 (Permalink)

Flowers, and lit candle Don't leave candles unattended

A Candle Fire May Lead to Significant Loss

Who doesn’t love a good-smelling candle? Those waxy sticks line store shelves with all those exotic names just enticing you to buy them and bring them home, making your house smell like some rustic northern cabin. While candles are great for setting the mood or creating ambiance, they also present a considerable risk to you and your home. A candle fire may lead to significant loss. Therefore, when using candles, it is a good idea to follow the rules of use.

1. Don’t Leave Candles Unattended

Never leave a lit candle unattended. The small flames on most candles may seem harmless enough, but if you leave the room for even a minute that candle may fall, causing that little flame to engulf your furniture, room or home.

2. Keep Away from Children and Pets

Children and pets likely do not have the capacity to successfully interfere if a candle fire starts. Also, animals and children probably do not have the foresight to understand that playing around an open flame of any kind is dangerous. Therefore, it is necessary to keep candles away from children and pets who are not supervised by a responsible adult.

3. Remove Flammable Items

While it may seem like a no-brainer, candles should never be placed near or on top of flammable items. All those Halloween pictures showing a candle on top of a stack of books are wrong, doing so puts you at significant risk for a house fire. Paper and an open flame do not belong together unless it is meant as kindling. The same can be said of fabrics. Be careful where you place candles, and always be mindful.

4. Consult a Fire Specialist

While it may seem like overkill, you can speak with a fire assessment specialist or a fireman in the Hingham, MA, area. These individuals are experienced in fire and smoke cleanup and will likely know the basics of candle safety.

A candle fire is a possibility when using candles regularly. However, it can be avoided by following the rules of candle use and safety.