Hooray! It is finally Spring! Even if the weather doesn't think so. Here we get the gross Midwest mush of rain, sleet, snow, and occasional hail. With all the different changes to weather, even all four in one day, we have to be aware of our structures.
Throughout the Spring, or all the time, basements should be checked to see if there is any seepage through the foundation or other various opportunities in the structure.
Be aware of your downspouts and gutters. The harsh cold winter may have either shifted the downspouts, or ruined the gutters. Making them ineffective at keeping water away from your home or business.
With the ground still being frozen there is little room for water to go. If it can't soak up into the dirt, it may be finding itself through basement foundation cracks, window wells, or in some cases, right through your doors!
It would also be wise to invest in a dehumidifier, especially one you can place in the basement. This can help with deterring mold growth and dialing down that icky mildew smell.
If you need any advice, or have a spring disaster you can't clean up, give us a call at SERVPRO of Rockford!
Romantic Candle Fires
It's February! Valentine's Day is coming up, and I know people either hate it, or love it!
There are multiple ways to woo your significant other, and one of those tends to be a romantic candlelit dinner.
Candles can smell nice, add a delicate glow for mood lighting, or can just be fun to decorate with. They can also be harmful to your home if you are not careful.
If you are someone who uses a candle daily, take a look at your walls or ceiling. Overuse of candles can cause smoke damage that darkens the areas near them. Usually, you will notice a dark circular spot on the ceiling, or a dark line up your wall.
Try to place candles away from the wall if you tend to use them more often. Make sure that any flammable material is nowhere near the flame, especially curtains or fabric. NEVER fall asleep with a candle lit. Our own office admin had a small house fire growing up when a family member had fallen asleep with a candle lit. The candle was also placed too close to the wall, so flames were able to reach up and stretch out over the room.
If you still decide to incorporate candles in your Valentine's festivities, just make it a point to extinguish them. Just remember, if your Valentine's Day doesn't go quite the way you expect, SERVPRO of Rockford can assist you in any fire disaster. Unfortunately, we can't make rejection "Like it never even happened."
Space Heaters and Winter
Fire in Commercial Building
Now that our chaotic winter season in the Midwest is starting to fester, it’s time to protect your home and business from fires. Yes, wintry conditions lead to frozen pipes, and everyone knows that there can always be a fair amount of water damage, but people also forget that with using more electricity, there is a higher risk for an electric fire.
Think about what you plug into your home in the winter. Phone chargers, computers, Christmas/seasonal lights, heated blankets/throws, humidifiers, and space heaters. Do you use many power strips? Do your plugs start to feel warm to the touch?
Be aware of what you are plugging in, and where you are plugging it in. A main culprit of winter fires are space heaters. Space heaters should not be plugged into a power strip, especially if there are other things utilizing it as well.
I love my space heater as much as the next person who wishes it to be warm, but I never leave it alone. Space heaters can be very fluctuating with their heat output. So constantly monitor it, and never leave the home with one on.
Make sure your space heater is a fair distance between it and anything else in the room. Especially any type of cloth or easily flammable material.
Do not place it on a plush carpeted floor. If it happens to be knocked over it could start a fire quickly, or even start to melt the synthetic fibers in the carpet.
Keep it away from pets and children. There’s a higher chance of it being knocked over, or burning a curious kitty, or toddler.
If the plug starts to feel uncomfortably warm, unplug it! There could be a short, and one quick spark can be all it takes for a fire to start.
Make sure the heater is clean of debris, dirt, dust, or dander. Any of those can be the kindling to your next insurance claim.
Be safe this winter, but just in case something does happen, give us a call at SERVPRO of Rockford, and we can make it “Like it never even happened.”
Ways to Prevent Water Damage & What to do if Water Does Intrude
Commercial Water Damage from burst pipe
It’s starting to become that time again. Those of you who enjoy the cold and snow, I’m happy for you. Those of you, like me, that do not enjoy it, will just have to think warm happy thoughts.
With the strange weather patterns in our Midwest area, we need to be prepared for burst pipes that may happen in our homes and businesses.
Most people believe that when the weather gets below freezing temperatures is when pipes tend to burst. Pipes actually burst when there happens to be a warmer winter day and anything that has been frozen starts to defrost.
To prevent burst pipes, you need to start with stopping them from freezing in the first place!
- Turn your water off if you are going to be gone for more than a day! - especially when you go on vacation to escape the freezing temperatures.
- Keep your pipes warm! Open up cabinets if you are going to be leaving, or if you know that a below-freezing day is upon you.
- Insulate any exposed piping! Again, keep your pipes warm. If your kitchen sink is on an outer wall, you might want to consider throwing in some extra insulation. Check your basements for any exposed piping that might need extra warmth.
- Keep the water moving. Let water drip steadily from faucets, the more the water is moving, the less chance it has of freezing.
- Caulk any holes or cracks near your pipes. You don’t want any more cold air getting in your home anyway!
- Turn off your outside spigots! One of the biggest water jobs can come from being forgetful. Many people forget about their spigots, and suddenly there’s a new indoor swimming pool where your basement used to be!
Well, what if you didn’t follow ANY of these tips? Oops! There is now water in your home! Oh no! What to do? (Hint: flip this page over)
UNTIL YOUR LOCAL SERVPRO ARRIVES
- Stop the source of water/Determine source. Shut. Your. Water. Off. Don’t just leave water spewing into your home. Make sure you know where the source is coming from so you can have it professionally fixed, but until then, turn off your water. Please.
- Remove as much excess water as possible. Shop vac, mop, even throwing towels down will help slow the spread of water.
- Wipe any wood furnishings, or any delicate surfaces. Think of what you have in your basement. Is it antique? One of a kind? Or just extremely important to you? Try to wipe it dry and remove it from the affected area.
- Be aware of electrical hazards. If your basement is filling up with water, and the water line is above your outlets, that water could now be electrified. DO NOT try and test the water. Have a professional, like us, come and pump it out.
- Or if water came from above, look up at your light fixtures. Do they seem damp, or dripping? Turn them off and inform your professional technician.
- Pad or block wood furniture. If you can remove them from the affected area, that’s even better. If you don’t have much room you can always use foil to wrap and protect wooden legs, if moving them isn’t an option.
- Remove contents from the affected area. I hope that is self-explanatory. The less that gets wet, the less that gets damaged.
- If you have any fans set them to blow air on the affected areas. If you have any dehumidifiers, that’s even better! Tip: Living in the Midwest with the humidity and rain, everyone should have a dehumidifier stashed somewhere! It wouldn’t hurt to have it on hand.
Hopefully you now feel prepared to tackle this winter weather! Keep your home and your possessions safe from disasters!
As you know, if something does happen to your home or business, give us a call! SERVPRO of Rockford, we make it “Like it never even happened.”
Spring Cleaning Ideas
Happy Spring everyone!
Some of us at SERVPRO Rockford have started going through our homes and decided it was time to clean and organize!
Our office manager has been using the KonMari Method. There is a book called The life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo.
It includes a step-by-step process of de-cluttering your home and puts you in a better mindset to be rid of things that you think you need. The book is to help the readers de-clutter, and stay de-cluttered. Most people will keep organizing the same rooms over and over, this method is to help you stop that pattern!
There are also many places you can take your slightly worn clothes and items to donate:
*Rockford Rescue Mission
*Rockford Habitat for Humanity
Many people also take this opportunity to take care of the outside of their home as well! Remember to double check your gutters and down spots! They may have been broken during the cold and ice over the winter, or clogged due to the fall leaves.
Also, check your outside spickets! We have already heard of a few of them causing water damage in basements!
If any water damage does happen, just give us a call and we can make it "Like it never even happened."
March - Green Means Clean!
These three products are "Green" and safe for the environment!
SERVPRO of Rockford wishes you a happy March! Everyone knows that green is the "unofficial" color of March. Usually observed for St. Patrick's Day!
And speaking of green, SERVPRO does carry "green" cleaning products that are designed to lessen the strain on the environment. They are made up of environmentally friendly raw materials.
Carpet & Upholstery Green Clean #251 - This product is pretty much described by its name. This product does not contain phosphates, solvents, dyes, or fragrances.
All Surface Green Clean #250 - This is a great alternative to traditional surface cleaners. It is a "Clean-all" for surfaces that are to be wiped or even mopped. All of the ingredients are safe, non-toxic, phosphate free, VOC compliant and bio-degradable.
Window Green Clean #249 - This environmentally-friendly glass cleaner is formulated with soft water to diminish spotting and streaking. Also, similar to the All Surface Green Clean #250, this product is safe, non-toxic, phosphate free, VOC compliant and bio-degradable.
March is just the beginning for your spring cleaning! As you dust off your home and reorganize, think of all the products that you will be using. Are they safe for the environment? For the O-zone layer? For you to be breathing in? Or even for your family and pets?
When you finally move that junk out of your basement and/or garage pay attention to your structure. Now that things are starting to defrost you may start to see seepage or even mold growth appearing. You can call us at SERVPRO of Rockford and we will assist you if your spring cleaning turns into a spring disaster. We will make it "Like it never even happened."
Pipes in a commercial Builidng
It's, sadly, that time of year again! The weather starts to change and you don't know if tomorrow will be a "fall" day, or a frozen one! With the temperature constantly decreasing and increasing, it is easy to forget about the care of your home.
SERVPRO of Rockford would like you to remember to protect your pipes from freezing before they burst! Once it starts to thaw out the amount of melted water and ice is too much for the pipe to handle.
A good idea, if you know that the weather is going to be below freezing temperatures, would be to open up the cabinets under the sink and let the warm air from your home inside. Also, to leave a small trickle of water running so its constantly flowing instead of sitting to freeze up.
If you plan on leaving for an extended time, or even a couple of days. It may be a good idea to also shut off your water. You never know what the weather will be in the next couple of days.
If a disaster does strike you, you can always call us at SERVPRO of Rockford, and we will make it "Like it Never Even Happened!"
Accidental Fires this Halloween
Carved Dragon Pumpkin by Angi
Halloween is almost upon us! It is the time of year where families will get together and start the fun and spooky decorations of their home.
Candles play a huge part in most decorations. They are placed in windows, in pumpkins, and outside. Although I do admit that the fun flickering of the light is enjoyable, it can also be hazardous to the home and anyone inside.
Please be cautious when using candles. Most people tend to set out their jack-o-lantern with a tea light lit, and then forget about it. Or they decided to just let the candle go out itself. With little ones running about and getting excited about the candy, there is always a chance that an accident could happen. They could knock over a candle or pumpkin, or even worse, their outfit may even catch on fire itself.
So please be safe this year and monitor your jack-o-lanterns and the little ones who are enjoying the festivities! Otherwise you may end up with SERVPRO employees as your next Trick-or-Treaters!
Restoring your Commercial Property After a Water Damage Event
Flooded Hallway in Commercial Building
Flooding and water damage events at commercial properties are often complex with numerous issues that require a knowledgeable and flexible response. Whether we’re dealing with a relatively small water cleanup scenario or a large scale event, we work quickly to assess each unique situation and isolate the damaged area. In many instances, normal operations can continue in a temporary space while we restore your facility.
Restoring Commercial Properties Presents Unique Challenges
Our professionals are trained to be mindful of legal and environmental concerns and strive to fully restore the damaged area while working within your budgetary constraints. We understand that every hour spent cleaning up is an hour of lost revenue and productivity. So when an emergency situation arises in your business, give us a call and we’ll be there fast with the help you need.
About SERVPRO of Rockford
SERVPRO of Rockford specializes in the cleanup and restoration of commercial and residential property after a water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.
MELD on the Rock
Jocelyn (Office manager) & Angi (Admin. Assistant.) Volunteering at the check in table
Last Thursday (September 15th 2016) SERVPRO of Rockford attended an event called MELD on the Rock. It's a yearly fundraiser that helps support Rockford MELD.
A Bit about MELD
MELD is a non-profit social service agency which provides programs and services to those in need. MELD provides shelter, parenting information, life and job skills training, support, and education for young parents and their children in the Rockford community.
SERVPRO of Rockford supports MELD and believes in their mission. Which is "guiding young parents to build a strong family and lead a responsible life by providing shelter, education and life skills training."
What is MELD on the Rock?
MELD on the Rock had an attendance of 220 people this year! This fundraiser included a casual dining experience at Prairie Street Brew House with raffles to win a "rock", or a 50/50 raffle to win some cash. This year we had the opportunity to listen to music by 3 Good Men, who were fantastic!
If any one is interested in finding out more about MELD, check out their website at: http://www.rockfordmeld.org/