If you have a fire or water emergency, please call us now at (309) 827-7500

To have the optimal experience while using this site, you will need to update your browser. You may want to try one of the following alternatives:

Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Archived Blog Posts

What to do when Animal Hoarding leaves its mark...

1/4/2021 (Permalink)

Biohazard We clean it properly.....the first time.

Let’s say you have a neighbor, friend or family member that is a person living with several animals.  Although their heart is in the right place with these animals and they picture themselves as a savior to the homeless cats, dogs or whatever- in the community, they can’t quite keep up with all of the needs of the animals. 

Over time, the pet food containers, fecal matter, and urine accumulate into a truly hazardous living condition.  The condition of the animals begins to deteriorate as vaccinations are not administered and disease among the animals begins to transmit.  A neighbor notes the issue and contacts animal control in concern for the animals and their neighborhood. The animals are subsequently removed and the neighbor is now left with an overwhelming home environment that is unhealthy to live in.

Scenes like this are much more common in our communities than many really know-especially now.  Animal hoarding is defined as: excessive acquisition of more animals than could reasonably be adequately cared for by a person on a particular property-and happens frequently.  The National Humane Society estimates that over 250,000 animals suffer and die due to animal hoarding on an annual basis.  Much too many. It doesn’t make sense to most people, that a person would voluntarily take on the volume of animals found in animal hoarding situations.  However, similar to standard hoarding disorders, animal hoarding is typically a manifestation some sort of underlying mental illness. Furthermore-it’s not just animals that can get ill - those individuals also can become ill or worse. The urine and feces left behind in an animal hoard environment can result in a toxic environment for the person left behind.

SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac specializes in the remediation of urine and feces decontamination.  Our technicians provide discreet aide to help restore those in need and to help return their environment back into a safe place for them to live. Our business is to keep the dignity and respect of the client intact as we help to restore their home to a healthy environment.  If you, or anyone you know, needs or would like help with the remediation of animal urine and feces remediation in their home please contact SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac for a free estimate. “Like it never even happened.”

Contact us today at 309.827.7500 or www.SERVPRObloomingtonpontiac.com. 

Why are Fire Alarms so Loud Anyway?

12/31/2020 (Permalink)

Loud Alarm Keeping everyone protected and aware will keep everyone safe.

What is the Reason that Fire Alarms are so Loud?

If loud sounds damage hearing—why are fire alarms so loud? And is there anything you can do to protect your ears from the noise?

How Loud Are Fire Alarms, Truly?

NFPA 72 lists requirements for fire alarm notification appliances, which take two primary forms:

Audible and Visual

Horns and sirens provide the audible alerts. Sounding off at 65 to 120 decibels (dB) when standing 10 feet from the device. Strobe lights provide the visible alert. Flashing once per second at 15 to 1,000 candelas, depending on the setting.

Prolonged and repeated exposure to loud noises can damage your hearing-That’s a fact.

The National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD) states that 85 dB and higher is the danger zone for hearing loss. However-being able to get everyone to safety becomes the task.

Why Do Fire Alarm Volumes Vary?

The goal of a fire alarm is to make sure everyone in the building knows to evacuate. That’s why the NFPA requires fire alarm horns and sirens to sound louder than typical noises.

The precise requirement is 15 dB above the average noise level or 5 dB above the maximum ambient sound-or whichever is greater. This means it may be appropriate to program fire alarm horns to 75 dB for a restaurant or office setting, but an industrial facility with loud equipment may need to sound off closer to the maximum 120 dB level to ensure the sound stands out from other ambient noises.

The high volume requirement for fire alarms accounts for the fact that distance from the horn decreases its perceived volume, and building materials absorb noise, especially if the doors are closed between rooms.

Due to these factors, the decibel level must be high at the source to ensure the sound travels to every corner of the building.

How Can You Protect Your Ears from Loud Fire Alarms?

When you hear the shrill noise of a fire alarm, your first instinct is to cover your ears. This is actually an effective way to defend against hearing loss while you walk calmly toward the exit and make your way out of the building.

More importantly, however, is to create a fire evacuation plan and hold fire drills regularly.

This way, your staff and/or family is confident about what steps to take and where to evacuate in case of an emergency. By planning ahead, you can limit confusion and reduce the time you’re exposed to loud volumes.

Finally, if you think the decibel level of your fire alarm is too high, hire a fire protection company to examine your equipment and make a determination. Your technician will make sure the volume is just right for safety and compliance with NFPA 72. Even though fire alarms can be loud, it’s imperative not to tamper with them. The NFPA has established fire codes that provide maximum safety for buildings in all industries. Disconnecting or adjusting the volume of your fire alarm sirens could result in noncompliance penalties and increased liability or decrease effectiveness.

How to handle water damage and carpeting

6/29/2020 (Permalink)

Check the Padding Can your carpet be saved?

What happens when water affects your carpeting?

So often, a homeowner has water seeping into their home. It varies in amounts and can be from flooding or even broken pipes. Once you clean up the water-you have to remain concerned about mold. 

It doesn’t take much water for mold to grow and do a lot of harm. Flooring is at the top of watching for damage. Cleaning water-soaked carpets and floors is difficult under any conditions, but in the aftermath of a storm or flood, contamination by mud, silt, sewage and mildew, can make the issue so much worse.

Prevent mold growth by drying water damage quickly and effectively.

The sooner you start drying and cleaning after a water damage, the sooner you can stop mold from growing under your carpet. The tools are simple: fans, bleach solution and appropriate cleaners. SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac has all of the equipment and cleaners needed to appropriately cleaned and protected…. with the added protection of a certified trained crew to take care of it. 

Water has to be removed as quickly as possible.

There are machines that can remove water, there are also larger machinery that restoration companies have that can remove large amounts of water much more efficiently. The quicker you remove the moisture, the sooner it can dry to avoid damage.

Use fans to effectively speed up the drying process and a dehumidifier to dry it out.

It can take several days for fans to completely dry a water damaged area appropriately. The good news is that they also help circulate fresh air and eliminate odors. These machines remove excessive moisture, which makes the air feel cooler and limits mold and mildew growth. Any equipment that helps dry out the air and the ground will speed up the drying time for your damaged floors and coverings as well as walls affected.

Steam clean carpet and flooring, sanitize walls/baseboards affected.

Steam clean all carpets to properly sanitize and deodorize. Removing water, drying and cleaning carpets quickly make it possible to save the carpet.  However, water-damaged carpet padding must be replaced. Replacing just the padding is much less expensive than having to re-carpet an entire area.

Anything touched by storm water should be sanitized and cleaned.  Clean all walls, hard-surface floors and other household surfaces with soap and water as well as sanitized. Restoration companies should be able to complete all these services properly.

Finally, Check the furniture

Look for water damage and remove furniture from wet flooring. Water damage can easily be hidden underneath rugs or carpet, so be sure to give your home a thorough inspection if you suspect water damage.

Take great care in repairing your home. SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac is here to help you. We have the certified trained staff and equipment to take care of your home.

Hardwood Floors and Water

6/29/2020 (Permalink)

Wood and water doesn't mix What do you do when you want to save your floor?

The importance of cleaning wood floors & woodwork after a water damage

After wood floors have been covered with extensive moisture, they need to be cleaned, flattened and possibly replaced. How is this determined? When do professionals need to be called in?

The answer is, call the professionals. If you have wood floors or woodwork to save, call in the professional cleaners. SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac has trained professionals on mitigation and remediation-they will let you know up front what it takes to save woodwork-and if it’s not.

Before the house dries out, scrub all woodwork with a stiff, but nonabrasive brush, plenty of water and detergent to remove mud and silt from corners, cracks and crevices. Floodwaters tend to accumulate in partitions and exterior walls. Draining these areas as quickly as possible is the most important first step. Insulation and structural pieces can dry properly if the moisture is removed.  Remove the baseboard and drill holes between studs a few inches above the floor. This part of the process looks strange-however it allows air to move and dry without having to rip the entire wall out.

If refinishing is necessary, wait until moisture has dried from all wood framings, between walls, floors, and backs of trim. This may take several months-our professional team can place all appropriate equipment and test to have this done as quick as possible. The big question, what happens if the wood floor looks like damage may be setting in.

Wood floors may buckle-There is only so much you can do. Leave them alone to dry. Dry wood as fast as possible without aggravating shrinkage. Open windows and doors wide enough to give good ventilation on dry, non-humid days only. Maintain a temperature of 50 degrees to 60 degrees in the house. Keep fans running to keep the air moving. After the house is dry, there are several possibilities for renovating the floors. Some of the buckled flooring may be pounded into place with nails, some bumps may be removed by planning or sanding down. Heavily planed floors may never be used uncovered, but a smoothed old floor can serve as a base for a resilient hard surface floor covering.

Mold and mildew are common problems with wet wood. Badly infected wood must be replaced. The professionals will let you know if removal is the only option.  Clean mildewed floors, woodwork and other wooden parts by scrubbing with appropriate solutions and rinsing with water-then drying-But always call the professionals to test and receive appropriate guidance.

Then apply a mildew-resistant finish.

Don’t give up on your floors-but be diligent, go to professionals, and know where you are with your floors. Call SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac to have your cleanup done right!

Roof Damage happens anywhere

6/29/2020 (Permalink)

Tarped Roof We can help get you back on track

What to look for on your roof, after a STORM.

It doesn’t matter where you live in the United States. Every location has its own hazards for roofing. Weather varies from Hurricane to Hail to Snow to Tornadoes-it all wreaks havoc on a home…. especially a roof.

So, what do you do after a Storm? How do you identify roof damage, and what should you do about your roof after a major storm? 

Types of Roof Storm Damage 

Wind

Hurricane-force winds, which are 74 mph or greater, can cause visible damage to your home’s roof. High winds can remove or tear shingles- leaving the underlayment, roof deck, or waterproofing material exposed to the elements. Those then can become saturated and leads to damage inside the building.

During less severe storms, sudden, sharp gusts of wind can lift and even curl up the shingles.  When shingles are installed, they’re purposefully overlapped to create a water-tight seal. This lifting and curling can break this seal, potentially leaving your roof exposed to damage from wind-driven rain.

Hail

Hailstorms typically are relatively short and rarely last for longer than 15 minutes. Hailstones can leave dents or marks in shingles and knock shingle granules loose. This is problematic because these granules protect your roof against rain and sun damage. Hail can also ruin the pleasing aesthetic appearance of your roof’s surface. This damage happens fast-and will need to be repaired quickly as well.

Standing Water

Roofs without proper drainage can experience problems with standing water after big rainstorms, especially in uneven areas. Clogged gutters cause backed up rainwater under your shingles, which allows moisture to potentially penetrate the underlayment or the roof deck. Water then can seep into a building causing mold and damage.

Debris

Depending on how severe the storm can be or what kind of storm, debris can end up on the top of your roof, everything from small branches to larger tree limbs. Large objects can dent or impact the surface of the shingle, leaving that area of the roof vulnerable to moisture intrusion, whereas lighter branches may not be as much of a problem.

SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac can help tarp most buildings and work on repairing any issues that move towards the inside of your structure.

We can handle any size storm

6/29/2020 (Permalink)

Hotel From several homes in one area to a Large building-Storm preparedness is the key.

No Job is ever described as Too Large for SERVPRO

Our Commercial Large Loss Division Teams are the best in the business. SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac can have a Large Loss Team in any of our Locations within an hour. This team is built up of the best in restoration and these specialists are qualified and ready to go. Every large loss is supervised by a commercial operations manager to help ensure seamless communication and timely mitigation. No detail is left untouched.

At SERVPRO, the difference is our ability to dispatch trained production professionals and keep costs affordable through the strategic placement and oversight of temporary labor. Get the professionals, call SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac.

Those whom have utilized Large Loss Teams:

Hospitality

Property Managers

Universities

Municipalities

With the ability to mobilize local command centers as well as the resources of more than 1,700 Franchises nationwide, no disaster is too big. Call our office to schedule a time to go over Large Loss Teams and know ahead of time what we do and how we do it. Let us take care of your property.

Call SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac at 309-827-7500

What SERVPRO does for you

6/29/2020 (Permalink)

commercial spot We are here to service from start to finish.

SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac franchise professionals understand all situations.

As an agent, adjuster, contractor or manager you have a responsibility to keep costs down while still providing the best services possible for your customers/residents. SERVPRO Professionals are qualified to help. The results we produce speak enough for themselves.

Our Emergency Response to Claims

Restoring property is the SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac’s first priority. Your customers will appreciate the immediate response we provide. You will know everything is being done to limit the damage and turn properties around. We are well aware that restoring a property is more economical than replacing most properties. SERVPRO will make sure all pretesting is completed on every loss to determine what can be restored and what cannot. 

The professionals with SERVPRO can provide an itemized loss inventory system. This includes an Excel report and pictures of those important items.

Electronic Claims Information Available

Our Claims Information Center provides fast, accurate information you need to make sound decision. These include Notice of Loss, Detailed Estimate, Photos, Forms and Paperwork as well as a Complete Electronic Job File and many more.

What we do on our end?

Effective training and certification is the best way to help ensure your customers receive the service they deserve. SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontic professionals are trained to IICRC standards in Fire and Water Cleanup and Restoration. They are also diligent on continuing education classes available to franchise professionals and insurance clients at our state-of-the-art IICRC Approved Training Facility. We continue to only use qualified professional vendors to help service customers as well.

A SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac professional's main job is to complete work the customer needs and wants. They perform quality service and to report to you quickly and thoroughly. Working together we strive to save you time so you can focus on your priorities. SERVPRO professionals documented, measured performance increases value to you and your shareholders, managers and customers.

SERVPRO leads the industry in the fire and water cleanup and restoration. The SERVPRO System is geared to achieve customer satisfaction and mitigation results, adding to your company’s competitive advantage.

When you need us. We are here.

SERVPRO Bloomington/Pontiac 309-827-7500

Why Choose SERVPRO for Fire Damage

6/29/2020 (Permalink)

Burned Room Who do you trust to take care of your home?

Why Choose SERVPRO for Fire Damages?

Fire damage restoration is a delicate task that should only be handled by professionals. What’s left after a fire is not just fire damage. There is water damage and possibly structural damage necessitated by firefighters to control and assure that the fire is fully extinguished.

Fire-retardant chemicals, soot and smoke damage fill an area and can create toxicity that must be handled quickly and carefully. Professionals with SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac are trained to maximize the salvage of belongings and can try to prevent further damage. We will be there as the fire is extinguished by emergency personnel in order to start the process. We want to take some of the stress out of an extremely stressful situation.  We will work quickly to assure your property is secure through our board up services. The following are a few important aspects of Fire Damage Restoration you need to keep in mind.

Inspection

Once the fire services are done controlling the fire, our experts carefully and efficiently inspect the site for damage. They will classify the damage according to the cause i.e. fire, water, chemicals, and smoke. After determining the type and level of damage, we shall create a custom detailed report and generate a restoration plan. We will work with you closely throughout the restoration process.

Eliminate smoke odors and removal of residue

We will eliminate smoke and odors from the site. Smoke is corrosive and may cause further damage to your possessions and so it is imperative to eliminate it first.

We remove soot from the entire structure as well as removing wet carpets to discourage mold growth.

Protect undamaged property

There may be parts of your property that were not affected by the fire. The restoration team will seal off these areas to avoid damage from smoke, soot, and odors. Items in these areas will be moved to a storage facility through inventory and packing to ensure their well-being and safety.

Repair

We will repair, replace, and rebuild any affected areas. The items damaged beyond repair are listed for the owner and will follow up with your insurers. Belongings that can be cleaned are restored and returned.

For fire restoration in central Illinois contact SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac.

 309-827-7500

Build a Relationship

6/28/2020 (Permalink)

Partership Let us be a resource for you

Building Relationships is Good for Business

SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac is dedicated to getting your business or Commercial property back up and going quickly. Don’t let an emergency force you to depend on a partner you don’t know. At SERVPRO, we are here to help you prepare for the unexpected. We also provide several services non-emergency related. Building a relationship with a trusted partner is good business. Meet our staff, review scenario plans, run through situations, tour our buildings or let us partner with you on community events. We are also a locally owned and operated business. We help you be ready. We can help get your facilities back to where they were and/or better!

Don’t let an emergency get in the way of the foundation of a strong business. Strong businesses are built on a foundation of strong relationships-this has always been true. The relationships business owners, operators, marketing and other employees are relationships you are building with customers.

The businesses who reach out to us are in a time of crisis. Because of this, these relationships should be built on a foundation of need. We want you to have your confidence established before-by doing this-we can only make this relationship stronger!

To learn more about building relationships that will become the basis of your commercial business needs. Contact SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac, we are here to help. “Like it never even happened.”

Firework Safety

6/28/2020 (Permalink)

Celebrations! Enjoy Fireworks safely and with your families!

Basic Firework Safety

Fireworks are dangerous.

This is nothing new. This is a fact. However-there is an entertainment value in fireworks as well. Use fireworks properly, safely and observing all appropriate safety precautions. Injuries related to fireworks can range from minor to life threatening. Property damage occurs every year with improper use of these devices.

 We promote proper firework safety in our community and want our customers, neighbors and friends to follow some simple precautions during their celebrations.

Follow these safety tips when using fireworks: 

  • Never allow young children to play with or ignite fireworks.
  • Always have an adult supervise fireworks activities. Parents don't realize that young children suffer injuries from sparklers. Sparklers burn at temperatures of about 2,000 degrees - hot enough to melt some metals.
  • Never place any part of your body directly over a fireworks device when lighting the fuse. Back up to a safe distance immediately after lighting fireworks.
  • Never try to re-light or pick up fireworks that have not ignited fully.
  • Never point or throw fireworks at another person.
  • Keep a bucket of water or a garden hose handy in case of fire or other mishap.
  • Light fireworks one at a time, then move back quickly.
  • Never carry fireworks in a pocket or shoot them off in metal or glass containers.
  • After fireworks complete their burning, douse the spent device with plenty of water from a bucket or hose before discarding it to prevent a trash fire.
  • Make sure fireworks are legal in your area before buying or using them.
  • Make sure they are purchased from a repeatable store.

Be safe and enjoy your celebrations!!

Garage Safety

6/23/2020 (Permalink)

Garage Fire A small issue in the Garage can turn into a large issue to your home quickly.

Keep your Garage Safe!

Fire can start just about anywhere in your home. Many homeowners overlook the Garage area for fire prevention. We all do it. -“Just put it in the Garaged”. That phrase is uttered more often then we realize. There are a few key things you can watch out for.

1: Electrical Issues

Electrical fires are so common. They can be from malfunctions in the equipment, faulty devices using an outlet, etc. Keep track of all of your wiring-keep it used safely. Don’t leave things plugged in that don’t need to be plugged in. Avoid long term use of extension cords. And if you have pets or who knows what gets into garages, make sure cords are not chewed on.

2: Flammable Liquids

Garages tend to be the catch all. All the paint, finishers and other flammable liquids are potential fire hazards. Storing these liquids properly is going to prevent them from becoming a dangerous situation. Follow manufacturer guidelines for storage and keep them in a shed if possible. This goes for your propane tanks as well-keep them stored as a flammable liquid.  

3: Clutter

Clutter can be harmful anywhere. It can cause small fires to turn into larger quickly when there is clutter around. This is also true for a garage. Keep your storage areas including your garage properly maintained and clean to avoid any additional fire issues.

 The Key is Prevention

Garage fires tend to get out of hand very quickly. To avoid a disastrous fire, there are a few things that can be done to fireproof your garage or at least help a fire from getting out of hand. Keep a fire extinguisher in or near your garage. Install a fire alarm in your garage.

Get a shed on your property where you can keep propane tanks and other flammable materials. If you cannot have a shed, find metal storage for the garage. Keeping your garage clean, organized, and free of frayed and exposed wires will help you avoid fire and keep any potential fires from getting out of hand.

Take some simple measures to avoid having a disaster in your garage and your house.

If you experience fire damage, call the fire restoration professionals at SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac309-827-7500

Appliances that Can Cause Damage

6/22/2020 (Permalink)

Water Damage from Appliances It's all nice until your appliances turn on you!

Appliances that are most likely to cause a water damage

Water Damage is most common during a storm situation or a broken pipe. One thing to keep in mind however malfunctions from appliances often happen as well. Pipe bursts or leaks as well as just common appliance mishaps can cause just as much if not more damage.

Hot Water Heater

Any sort of break or leak in a hot water heater can cause major damage. Performing yearly maintenance or check ups may seem costly or inconvenience, but that can be far less than cleaning up the flooding afterwards. If at any time you notice leaking from around the water heater, make sure you contact a repair company quickly. The sooner the issue is mitigated, the less damage you will need to repair.

Air Conditioners

Air Conditioners typically are located outside the home. Most homeowners/renters don’t feel like water damage can occur from them. However-a window unit or a unit that runs through a humidifier in the home can cause a water issue. Attic air conditioners can run the largest chance of becoming a water damage hazard. Keep an eye out for moisture and leaks and notify a professional to repair as soon as possible.  

Washing Machine

Washing Machines hold a large amount of water, sometimes several times a day. Hoses typically are the largest source of water damage associated with washing machines. However, modern front load washing machines introduce another complication. Front door gaskets can get worn out and rip-causing water to flow out. Make sure your gasket and hose are in good shape with regular checkup. You will also want to watch out for clogged drains, this will cause the machine to not unload properly, causing an overflow issue.

Refrigerator

Leaky refrigerators are really an issue and can be a slower problem to address. Problems with the fridge could mean an issue with food inside as well as water damage. This is typically caused when a water line is either frozen or clogged in the defrost drain. Be sure to check your fridge on a regular basis to make sure the temperatures are right and you have no water coming out.  

Dishwasher

The Dishwasher is a large cause of issues at the home. Drains, hoses and other connections can fail-leading to damage.

The older any of these appliances are, the more likely there will be function failures. Be sure to be aware of what state they are all in and check for damage. Life does happen and if you see an issue with any of these-contact SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac. We can walk you trough what needs to be done and what we can do to help you get your home back in order. Don’t wait to get help. The longer water is allowed to sit, the more time it has to spread and cause more costly damage.

Dryer Vent Fire

6/22/2020 (Permalink)

Lint in Vent Keep your pipes clean!

How do we prevent laundry room fires?

The most common cause of dryer fires is failure to clean the vent regularly. The lent trap will typically get most of the fuzzy lent. The pieces that get through are what will cause a large amount of damage.  There is typically a buildup in the line or around a heating element that will cause a fire.

Follow these tips to prevent Dryer vent fires

  1. Clean out the lint and the vent pipe to reduce the chance of fire and to maintain the efficiency of the dryer.
  1. Install with care. Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions when installing the vent pipe. A dryer vent fan should be installed by a licensed electrician.
  1. Clear out combustibles. You want to keep anything flammable material away from your dryer. If it does start to overheat or smaller fire-it can escalate much quicker.
  1. Be sure to use solid metal as your duct work.
  1. Read tags. Follow care label reads tumble dry low, don’t turn the dryer up to high.
  1. Use extra caution with flammable liquids. Wash clothing stained with volatile chemicals more than once—and definitely opt to line dry over machine dry.
  1. Use your clothes to diagnose problems. Clothes that no longer feel dry or that are extra hot to the touch after a normal dry cycle are a telltale sign that something’s wrong. Before doing the next load, check for a plugged vent and clean out any lint.
  1. Don’t leave your dryer running when you leave the house. Issues can be quickly resolved if there is someone there.
  1. Give the outdoor vent a regular inspection. Make sure it isn’t clogged with lent or blocked by weeds, snow or even a nest.

SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac is here to help your laundry room get back to where you want it if something should occur. Large or small-we are here to do it all!

Business Fire

6/22/2020 (Permalink)

warehouse fire Keep your Business and your People safe

Preventing Commercial Property Fires

Fires are so destructive and extremely dangerous to businesses and employees. They threaten individual well-being and property. Commercial fires can happen due to a large variety of things. They are something every business or property owner wants to avoid dealing with. Being prepoared for these emergencies is the best way to keep individuals safe and get your business moving quicker.

Cooking/Heating

Restaurants have a higher likelihood of fire in their cooking area. Keeping cooking services clean, maintaining the Cooktop hoods properly as well as providing safety protocol for all heated services will help to avoid any issues. It is important to go over all risks and prevention measures with all staff. Having proper fire extinguishing equipment installed and located will keep damage to a minimum.

Lighting and Electrical Issues

Personal property or commercial, wherever electricity is involved-there is a risk of something going wrong. These could be from old wiring to overloaded fuses. The fault coming from electrical and lighting issues is large. Keep unqualified individuals away from working on circuitry and electrical. This is a good first step to avoiding risk to your business and staff. Make sure all electrical work is up to code and done by a professional properly.

Smoking

Most businesses now have smoke free facilities. Be sure to maintain these rules with all of the staff. Smoking should only be done in designated areas. This should only happen far away from any flammable services or liquids. Smoking devices should always be disposed of properly to avoid any accidental ignition.  

Stay Calm. Contact your fire department. Make sure If you discover that your business is or has been the site of a fire, then stay calm, but act quickly. Make sure the building has been evacuated and that everyone is safe and accounted for.

When the fire is out and the area is safe, turn to the team that can help your business get back on its feet. With SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac, you will get professional help from technicians who are qualified to tend to fire-damaged commercial properties. They can make your business ready for clients, customers and your employees to get back to business.

Commercial Water Damage Tips

6/22/2020 (Permalink)

Floor Get your Business up and running.

When your community and your family rely on your business, you want to make sure it stays protected. Part of that protection is making sure issues like water don’t shut you down.

Be prepared

Start by anticipating what could happen. We can’t predict the future, but we can think of worst-case scenario. What do you do if a water main break? How do you keep employees safe? How do you prevent or eliminate business disruptions that could result from water damage? How do you keep communication lines open between management, staff and customers? How do you get your business back?

Make a plan

While thinking through possible commercial water damage scenarios for your business, you made notes of the solutions you came up with for your “what if?” questions.

Now put your plans into action to develop an emergency plan for your business. A good emergency plan should provide for the safety of all people who could enter your business, as well as procedures for carrying on with business during a variety of challenges.

 It should include,  

  • an emergency contact list (accessible from off-site)
  • emergency procedures
  • emergency staffing instructions
  • vendor lists and contact info
  • data backup plans and other resources to support business operations in case you have to temporarily or permanently relocate your business operations.

Stuff gets old. It breaks. It fails. When plumbing or water-management equipment in your commercial facility fails, the resulting water damage restoration costs can stack up fast. So the operative word for commercial water damage prevention is maintenance. Routinely inspect all visible plumbing, test sump pumps, check exterior gutters and downspouts, muck out drainage ditches and storm drains and ensure roof structures are in good repair.

Storms cause massive Flooding, be aware

6/22/2020 (Permalink)

Couch Now what?

Our area, just like many other areas-have experienced high water volumes this spring. When this happens-SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac is ready to help. Our staff is fully trained with the proper equipment to keep Storm damage to a minimum.

Act Fast 

When a flood happens, you need to act fast to dry out any wet items, particularly structural materials like walls and flooring. 

Watch for Pooling Water 

Look for places around your property where water pools, and channel it away from buildings. Make sure gutters and downspouts are clear of debris and they are directing water as intended.

Raise Storage Goods 

Use shelving and/or pallets to keep storage items off the floor to reduce the impact of small floods. In many situations, raising boxes just a few inches will be enough to keep storage goods above the water line. 

Maintain Sump Pump 

If you have a sump pump, check to be sure it is operational before water starts rising. Consider a back-up generator to ensure your pump works when you need it most. Contact your insurance agent to add coverage in case your sump pump fails. 

Cut Power if Necessary 

As rising water approaches the level of electrical outlets, you risk having a live current flow through all the water. Cut the power if you can safely do so without standing in water. Otherwise, evacuate and contact an electrician to cut the power before you go back in for recovery.

Keep Storm Drains Clear

If you see water pooling around a storm drain, the drain may be clogged with debris. Clearing the debris will help keep the water flowing away from your neighborhood.

Be Aware on the Road-Be extremely cautious

Be careful when driving during spring storms, especially when you hear flash flood warnings. Never drive into fully submerged roadway. The water surface will be at the same level as the pavement you can see. This view can deceive you into thinking the water is shallow because you cannot see how the road dips under the surface. 

We are here to help. The Storm hits-don’t panic-contact SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac!

Helpful Tips for Storm Damage

6/22/2020 (Permalink)

Tree on house When a tree strikes, A window Breaks or Lightning hits.....We have your back!

Be mindful of Storm Damage to a Building:

  • Stay away from any damaged buildings or structures until authority has had a chance to examine it and determine that it’s safe.
  • Wait until daylight to return to buildings so it’s easier to see and avoid any hazards.
  • Leave your home or other building if you hear any shifting or strange noises- this could mean it’s about to fall.
  • If you smell gas or suspect a leak, leave your house/building and contact emergency authorities right away!!! Don’t turn on the lights, light matches, smoke, or do anything that can cause a spark. Don’t return to the building until you’re told it’s safe to do so.
  • Keep children and pets away from the affected area until cleanup has been completed.
  • If electrical circuits and electrical equipment have gotten wet or are in or near water, turn off the power at the main breaker or fuse on the service panel. If you must enter standing water to access the main power switch, then call an electrician to turn it off.
  • Never turn power on or off or use an electric tool or appliance while standing in water. Ever.
  • Do not connect generators to your home’s electrical circuits without the approved, automatic-interrupt devices. If a generator is on line when electrical service is restored, it can become a major fire hazard and it may endanger line workers helping to restore power in your area.

If a storm hits, SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac can board up, tarp and work with you on cleanup/restoration projects. Get your home back to pre-storm status with our help.

We can do it, start to finish.

Who to Choose for Large Loss

6/22/2020 (Permalink)

Large Loss Team We have the too.ls to do what you need to resolve your Large Loss !

How do you Choose a Large Loss Company?

When disaster strikes, we try to find any way to deal with it. Large loss situations are no different. They do, however, come with their own set of very unique and very difficult challenges. Resources required to repair and amount of damage are often much larger. Know what it takes to have success with a Large Loss Team and how do you choose them-

Generally speaking, a large loss event is one that stretches beyond one or two properties, to encompass an entire neighborhood, region or even larger area. Examples can include;

  • hurricanes/storm damage
  • widespread flooding
  • earthquakes
  • terrorist events

Look for Experience and Trained Teams

Any local restoration company can claim they know how to complete a large response. Only a few companies are truly equip to handle large loss. Ask all of your options for examples of their work and their strategies for clean up.

Look for a Large Team

A big loss requires a large and swift response. Make sure your prospective team has a large staff trained to properly respond, manage the project, and restore the affected structure or structures. This could be a local team in coordination with a large loss team brought in.

Look for Quick Response times

Flooding can cause major damage to your property in just 24 hours or quicker, so it’s critical that a disaster response team assess the damage and develop the plan quickly and efficiently.  Make sure to choose a cleanup partner able to arrive within an hour of your phone call to assess.
The way you handle a large catastrophic loss can have implications for years to come. Make sure you do things the right way. Use the above tips to find the right cleanup partner and you won’t regret making the wrong decision.

Contact SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac for any large loss needs or questions.

Who We Are

6/22/2020 (Permalink)

Corporate Green We are here. We are ready for you

Why Choose SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac

Our company was founded in Sacramento, California in 1967. Ted and Doris Isaacson launched as a painting business and soon decided to transform their company. The Isaacson’s developed their company into a cleaning and restoration business, quickly growing to sell their first franchise in 1969. The company has continued to grow. Headquarters was relocated to Gallatin, Tennessee in 1988-this was to make sure they were within 600 miles of 50% of the United States. SERVPRO Corporate has always been heavily involved in community services and was awarded “Small Business of the Year” in 1991.   

Since then, every SERVPRO franchise has had a strong emphasis on community involvement. Every year our SERVPRO Franchise support several community and charity events. For SERVPRO Bloomington/Pontiac, this includes sponsoring several sport teams and gifts for The Baby Fold during the Holidays.

Our goal is to be a strong presence in the community we live in, shop in and are involved in. We share partnerships on social media and keep ourselves involved in local chamber of commerce. Supporting our community and local businesses is a huge part of helping our community thrive.

We are in some truly unique and different times. We do what we can to make sure that our communities know we are here to support them. Feel free to approach us with any questions.

Building a Storm Kit

6/19/2020 (Permalink)

Storms Are you ready for a Storm when it hits?

Build a Storm Emergency Kit

Part of being prepared is to have a Storm Emergency Kit prepared. Below is a list of items that should be included in a basic Storm kit. Be sure to have the kit in a sealed container and in a safe location that if you have to take cover during a storm-you could still access.

Keep in mind specifics that may not be included: a toy for comfort, maybe a few family photo copies and safely sealed digital copies of important documents.

Supplies should Incude:

  • Backpack
  • Bottled Water
  • Non-Perishable food (Can Opener)
  • Eating utensils
  • Flashlight with extra batteries
  • First Aid Kit-with book
  • Tissues and Toilet with bags for disposal
  • Writing utensils and paper
  • Sleeping bags or Warm blankets-per person
  • Wrench or Pliers to turn off utilities
  • Personal Hygiene kits
  • Whistle to call for help
  • Battery powered radio and NOAA weather radio
  • Formula, Diapers and other supplies if you have a baby in the home
  • Dust mask to filter air
  • Extra pet supplies-if you have pets
  • Plastic Sheeting and Duct tape
  • A change of clothes for each person

Also include a jacket, hat, gloves and closed toe shoes for walking.

  • Rain gear/supplies
  • Cash
  • Paper Towels
  • Fire Extinguisher/Large baking soda
  • Cards/Games
  • Extra Zip close bags
  • Extra of any required medications as well as basic, over the counter medications.

When Life Turns Upside Down

6/19/2020 (Permalink)

Disaster Recovery Large or small-can can get it all!

When life turns upside down

Storm damages can turn life upside down. They happen at anytime and can really happen without much notice. Between heavy rain, powerful wind and lighting-you can never know what to exactly prepare for.

There are precautions that you can take to keep your family safe-but what do you do about properties? How do you prepare for the literal unknown? Heavy rains cause flooding. Winds can cause roof damage or even uproot trees. Lightning can spark a fire…...all in one swoop. Have a strategy. Stay calm-be ready.

It is important to act quickly and to stay safe.

Heavy winds and rain can create hazards such as collapsed roofs, window damages, damaged walls or standing water in the basement or home interior. In addition, moisture can soak into furniture, carpeting, and building materials making the perfect environment for mold growth that can cause health issues. 

Shut off the main gas line if you smell gas. It may also be a good idea to shut main water valve off as well.

Beware of broken glass, exposed nails, and other hazards that can be around. Contact a local, reputable property restoration business to help do basic tasks to secure your property. If necessary, arrange for a place for you and your family to stay while your property is being restored.

Remember to: Photograph your damage and personal property items, contact your insurance company and look into federal disaster assistance if possible.

When a storm-related disaster strikes, it may seem overwhelming. But these steps can help you to begin the process of restoring your home, and your life, to normal.

SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac provides 24-hour emergency disaster services. We specialize in the mitigation and restoration of homes and businesses that have suffered small or large loss from water, flood, wind, storm, Fire and smoke disaster.

We are here to help.

Until Help Arrives

6/19/2020 (Permalink)

Back to normal Certified Clean

What does SERVPRO do for a Fire Damage?

Fires are devastating for homes and/or businesses. When they break-they can move fast and without mercy. Home and Business owners are helpless to stop what is coming. We wait on our fantastic Fire Departments to arrive and work quickly to extinguish and keep people safe. Once the trucks leave, where do you start? Now there is fire damage, smoke damage and water damage-possible flooding.

Professionals that specialize in this type of cleanup work efficiently and quickly to get life back to normal. Your local SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac has the experience, the professionals and the equipment to clean and restore almost anything. Our professionals have specialized fire and water damage restoration training and are able to remove smoke order and deep clean your upholstery/carpets of soot.

First thing is to always stay safe.

If you can still get into the building safely and want to start the process:

  • Limit movement and keep hands clean: this prevents soot particles from being embedded into upholstery and carpets.
  • If electricity is off and it’s a situation where you are safely able to get into the building, empty freezer and refrigerator and prop doors open.
  • Wash houseplants on both sides of leaves and remove them from the home
  • Change HVAC filter.

Do Not….

  • Don't attempt to wash any walls or painted surfaces or shampoo carpet or upholstery without contacting a Professional. It may actually do more harm. Also, if you don’t have to correct supplies-the long-term issues will mount up.
  • Don't attempt to clean any electrical appliances that may have been close to fire, heat or water without consulting an authorized repair service.
  • Don't use any canned or packaged food or beverages that may have been stored near the fire, heat or water.
  • Don't turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet. The wiring may be damaged.
  • Don't send garments to an ordinary dry cleaner. Improper cleaning may set smoke odor or damage clothing.

The largest thing to keep in mind is to contact a professional. SERVPRO has the knowledge and know how to help you get back to pre-Fire condition.

Take your Business to the next level

6/19/2020 (Permalink)

Dirty Carpet Dingy? Not here!

Having your business properly cleaned plays a huge role in the message you want to send your clients/customers. Commercial carpets withstand more wear and tear then many homes. It’s important to have them professionally cleaned on a regular basis. This will provide a crisp, clean and healthier environment for anyone in the business.

So why is Carpet cleaning so important?

Keeping your business head of the game is hard and diligent work. Keeping your floors in top condition may not seem to be the top of the priority list…. but it should be close.

One reason is you want to make a fantastic first impression. The effort you put into presenting your business to the public shows the positive energy you want to portray. When you have visitors to your workplace, they could get an inaccurate idea about the business if you the first impression is a dirty carpet. Professional commercial carpet cleaning can improve and maintain the overall appearance of your building. This also helps your customers/clients relax and feel at home.

Another reason protects your investments. You can do a lot of your own, but there is just something about having that professional provide the two-step system to show how wonderful your carpets can look.  You also want to always follow the manufacturer’s recommendations on cleaning the carpet to avoid any issue with the warranty. Also- dirt, grime, dust and allergens can easily get trapped in carpet fibers and eventually can make their way into the air, which can lead to poor indoor air quality. Keeping duct work and carpets clean improve air quality quickly.

Scheduling maintenance cleanings from a professional company will help to maintain the carpeting and or your flooring-maybe you can postpone that replacement for a few years. Be sure to contact professionals if there are spots on the carpet that are not easily removed-they could be removed before anything permanent sets in. Regular cleanings can extend the life of your carpets, which could result in long-term savings.

Just like any other regular maintenance, flooring and carpet need to be cared for.  As far as determining how often? That is something a few factors need to be taken into consideration.

Keep in mind the size of your business, what type of flooring and or carpet you have, how much foot traffic you have and what type of services your business provides. (we may want to clean the waiting room of a medical facility differently than a church.

Contact SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac for a quote on regular carpet or flooring cleaning-we will be happy to guide your business to the next level!

Call the Professionals

6/19/2020 (Permalink)

Flooded workplace Back to business

Be Prepared for the Next Water Damage

When the next water damage happens, is your business ready?

Broken water pipe, drain backed up, storm…no matter the reason-water damage can cause havoc for a business and needs to be resolved quickly.

SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac is able to move in quickly. We are able to start removing the excess water and start the work of making things go back to normal.

We bring in air movers, wet vacuuming supplies, dehumidifiers and air scrubbers. These all will dry the affected areas quickly and thoroughly-minimizing further issues.

Air movers help to ventilate an affected area. They circulate air so that the moisture can be extracted by dehumidifiers.  Dehumidifiers are an important piece of restoration drying equipment. Humid environments are ripe for the development of mold and bacteria. Businesses always want to maintain safe environments, so drying them quickly and effectively is important.

HEPA air scrubbers remove contaminants from the air. Air scrubbers are also important in mold remediation and prevention. When filtering mold spores from the contaminated environment, HEPA filtration ensures that even the smallest soot or mold particles are removed from the air safely.

Our Commercial Grade equipment can handle any size disaster. Contact our office when disaster hits. "Like it never even happened."

Our Community

6/18/2020 (Permalink)

Community We love our customers and community!

Our Community

What does SERVPRO provide for the community?

We are locally Owned. Locally Operated. Here for our community.

We are coaches. We are PTO members. We are neighbors. We are friends.

SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac works hard 24 hours a day/7 day a week/365 day a year to make sure our communities have what they need to continue moving forward.  These communities give us far more than we can ever return. We see our sponsorship signs, know that the doughnuts are being eaten by those who have put in a long day and residents know that we are there. These make us hold our heads a little higher and keep working towards making “Like it never even happened.”

We love our community. This is our home. Let us know what we can do to help you.

Be aware what’s in your Air.

6/18/2020 (Permalink)

Duct cleaning What should your Air Ducts look like

Be aware what’s in your Air.

Air Ducts in your home have a very essential job. Air in your home is circulated on a constant basis. The ducts located in that home keep the air flowing from your heating and cooling equipment.

 But it’s not just the warm or cool that impacts your family. It will impact the air you breathe as well. How many hours do you spend inside every day? Does anyone in your home have respiratory related complications? This show how important it is to ensure the air is as clean as possible.

Air duct cleaning involves removing the dust and contaminants that has settled within the ductwork. This includes all areas of your air system.  Areas include the supply and return air ducts as well as the registers in each room.

Air duct cleaning involves powerful vacuums that pull dust and debris from deep within, preventing it from moving and circulating throughout your home. If you’ve never had your ducts cleaned before, now may be a perfect time.

SERVPRO has the tools and knowledge to provide air duct cleaning-our Air Duct cleaning provides:

Creating a cleaner living environment

Improving your air quality

Reducing irritants in the air

Removing smells and odors

Improving efficiency

A cleaner system will ideally operate as efficiently as possible. This will give you a system that operates at peak efficiency and provides cost-effective performance as well as health benefits year round.

Trauma Scene Clean-Up

6/18/2020 (Permalink)

Trauma Let us take care of you

Trauma Scene Remediation

Trauma clean up isn’t an easy task to handle. If it’s done too quickly, without personal protection equipment, someone’s health could be at severe risk. But if the remnants of the crime are left in place for too long, there’s a greater risk of spreading the contamination or causing even more damage to the property and/or health.

Professional crime scene cleaning companies are the best source for reliable and safe biohazard cleanup.

When a home or office building has become a crime site, it can be difficult to know what one should and shouldn’t be doing.

Should you immediately start scrubbing everything?

Should you take personal possessions out of the area?

Professional trauma cleaners have answers to many of these important questions. They’ll coordinate with the law enforcement investigators and won’t get to work until the scene has been released. When you hire professionals, you won’t have to worry about inadvertently committing the crime of obstructing any investigation.

Cleanup is inherently dangerous work. Professional cleaners must undergo rigorous training. They learn how to use personal protection equipment properly and they must follow strict protocols during each job.

These precautions are necessary to protect themselves and the people who will be in the area afterward.

Proper trauma scene cleanup takes place as soon as possible after the police or medical professionals finish their investigation of the scene. If residue and fluids are neglected, the building itself can sustain further damage. With professional cleaning, these hazards can easily be avoided. If they are not done properly, more of the structure would have to be mitigated and rebuilt-causing further delay in time and money.

Work with professionals and get it done right the first time-It will make the process much easier for all whom are involved.

Keep Calm and Call SERVPRO!

6/18/2020 (Permalink)

SERVPRO support Ask us! Were are here to help.,

SERVPRO of Bloomington, Pontiac, Gibson City provides top notch 24-hour emergency services.

We are dedicated to being the fastest to any-sized disaster in Central Illinois. We can respond immediately to your emergency and have the expertise to handle your restoration and/or cleaning needs. Our strengths include:

24-Hour Emergency Service

Faster to Any-Sized Disaster

High quality Fire Content and Structural Cleaning

Deodorization

Quality Equipment to efficiently Mitigate

Highly Trained Restoration Technicians

A Trusted Leader in the Restoration Industry

Locally Owned and Operated

Advanced Restoration and Cleaning Equipment

And many more!

Residential Services

Whether your Bloomington, Pontiac, Gibson City or in surrounding areas, if your home needs emergency flood damage or your upholstery cleaned- you can depend on us.  Our technicians have extensive cleaning and restoration training and can make your property look its best. Learn more about our residential services by visiting our web page.

WWW.SERVPRObloomingtonpontiac.com

Water Damage Restoration

Fire Damage Restoration

Mold Remediation

Storm Damage Restoration

Cleaning Services

Building/Reconstruction Services

Commercial Services

There's never a convenient time for fire or Water damage to strike. Every hour spent cleaning up is an hour of lost revenue and productivity. When the need arises for professional cleaning or emergency restoration services, we have the training and expertise to respond promptly with highly trained technicians to get your property back to business.

Call Us 24/7/365 with any questions.

309-827-7500 or 815-844-3400

Electrical Fire Prevention

6/18/2020 (Permalink)

Fire Background Electrical Fire

Electrical Fire Prevention

Electrical fires are frequently caused by overloading equipment and their circuits.

This can cause insulation to burn, create sparks and leave wires exposed…. dangerous.  Do not overload electrical equipment by attempting to do heavier jobs than your equipment can handle. Keep areas around electrical equipment clear of combustibles such as sawdust, paper, cardboard and flammable liquids.

Oil and dirt buildup on electrical appliances can cause electrical equipment to overheat and short-circuit. When buildup does occur, quickly shut off electrical equipment and unplug its power supply. Use only clean, dry rags and brushes and follow manufacturer's instructions.

Shut off all electrical equipment that produces unusual sounds, unusual smells or sparks. (If it doesn’t seem “normal”, it probably isn’t)

Have the equipment checked by a qualified technician. Tag and remove hard-wired equipment from service so that it cannot be accidentally energized while it is being repaired or replaced.

Know locations of all emergency exits and fire escapes and know the escape routes from your work area and your home. Fire escape plans should be posted with exits clearly marked and practiced.

Know where the nearest fire extinguishers are and how to use them. Only Class C extinguishers are safe to use on energized electrical equipment.

Using simple common sense approaches can protect your work or home and everyone will stay safe.  

Power is out-now what?

6/18/2020 (Permalink)

Power Lines Food safety during a power outage

The power has gone out, now what?

There are often a lot of questions. How long do you have until your food is in trouble? What temperature is it not safe anymore?

Below are a few helpful hints on food in the power outage process:

  1. Keep the refrigerator and freezer doors closed as long as humanly possible. This will maintain the colder temperature longer.
    • The refrigerator will keep food cold for about 4 hours if unopened.
    • full freezer will keep the temperature for approximately 48 hours (24 hours if it is half full) if the door remains closed.
  2. Buy dry ice! This will keep the refrigerator as cold as possible if the power is going to be out for a prolonged period of time.
  3. If you plan to eat refrigerated or frozen meat, poultry, fish, or eggs while they are still at safe temperatures, it is important that each item is thoroughly cooked to a safe. This helps to ensure that any foodborne bacteria that may be present are destroyed.

However, if at any point the food was above 40º F for 2 hours or more (or 1 hour if temperatures are above 90 º F) — discard it.

Be safe. Stay healthy. And hopefully your power is only out a shorter period of time.

How to protect yourself while dealing with a Water Damage.

6/17/2020 (Permalink)

Dishwasher overflowing Don't let water problems catch you unaware.

How to protect yourself while dealing with a Water Damage.

The prospect of having to deal with a Water Damage claim is difficult enough. SERVPRO is ready to help and wants to make the process as painless as possible. When your pipes that burst, the sewage backs up or the toilets overflow-we have your back!

When your situation involves an insurance claim, there are a few things you may want to keep in mind. It can be tricky to claim full coverage on a water damage. If it is a situation where you can, make sure you protect your claim.

There are some main items to remember. First-Dry the area properly to eliminate creating further loss. Next, be sure to contact your insurer and always document every part of the situation.

When you have to handle a water damage situation, mitigate any further loss. Insurers want to know that the cause of water damage has been identified and resolved.  When you then contact the insurer, make sure it is rather quickly-most companies require a claim to be called in within the first 24 hours. Not having the issue mitigated quickly or contacting the insurer too late, could risk a claim denial.

Documenting everything!

Document when, where and how of every part of the damage. Keep in mind-work may not begin on repair work until everything is approved. Take pictures, gather bids, keep receipts and research companies. Keep an open line of communication between your insurer, your repair company and yourself. These little reminders will help you get through any water damage with minimal stress!

Keep a Plan ready for a Fire Emergency at Work

6/17/2020 (Permalink)

Commercial Fire Be ready for any Emergency

Keep a Plan ready for a Fire Emergency at Work

Most business owners have plans for all types of emergencies. This is particularly important to protect their employees.

One such situation is in the event of a Fire. Where do employees and/or guest exit? How big is the building, are there multiple exits, are the employees trained on the quickest and safest routes? Be sure to begin with the basic plan and post them. Employees should be aware of these plans and practice on a regular basis.

Build a Fire Safety team. The size of this team will depend on the number of employees and size of the building. This team would be in charge of developing the Fire escape plans and executing training protocols. Your company, with the safety team, can be in contact with your local Fire departments. The local Fire Departments are the best resource to know what you should and shouldn’t do in Fire Emergency Training.

Things to keep in mind: Do you need a sprinkler system? Do you have Fire Extinguishers located in proper locations? Do you need Fire Blankets? Do you know what to do first? Do you have anyone with special needs taken care of?

Always keep in mind-you want to keep employees and guests safe at all times. Once everyone is safe-then you execute your plan to get back to Business!

Can Vinyl flooring be damaged by water?

6/17/2020 (Permalink)

Water Damaged Vinyl Flooring What can happen to Vinyl Flooring with water damage

Can Vinyl flooring be damaged by water?

Absolutely!

There is a common myth about vinyl flooring. While it is a great way to cover a floor and has such a great variety available, there is a flaw. Most people are under the belief that vinyl flooring is safe from water damage. Unfortunately, this is very far from fact.

Vinyl flooring is water resistant but not water proof. What does this mean? It means that if you have spills, small leaks, etc. The clean up is easy and efficient. The problem is when moisture is allowed to get in between the seams and settle underneath. Days, weeks, months or up to a couple years later-the floor will start to show signs of damage. Anything from seams separating or planks popping loose to mold developing under the flooring.

While water damage problem is not as common with vinyl flooring as it is with other types of flooring products, they do often happen. Water damaged vinyl flooring problems are more common over concrete than with vinyl floors installed over wood substrates.

Over wood the problem is usually a water leak, flooding, or the underlayment was too wet when installed. Some signs of damage are discoloration, seams opening, bumps, bubbles, curing or adhesive deterioration.

Some more hidden issues are mold, mildew and bacteria build up. Surface moisture from mopping or the occasional spill should not result in water damaged vinyl flooring as long as the proper adhesive was used and the seams are properly sealed.  Water should always be mopped up immediately and a floor should never be intentionally flooded.

Cared for properly-vinyl flooring will look beautiful and last a very long time.

Emergency Ready Plan

6/17/2020 (Permalink)

ERP Emergency Ready plans

Emergency Ready Plan

When a business is forced to close due to disaster, long term effects can be tragic. Statistics show that an estimated 50% of businesses that close for such reasons never reopen.

SERVPRO has worked with local businesses for years to develop programs to have them ready. SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac can come in and help set up an Emergency Ready Plan.

More than 60% of U.S small businesses have no formal emergency plans in place to minimize loss of business or quick recovery.  There are a few things you can do to create a successful Emergency Ready Plan.

Start out by contacting professionals. Working with emergency restoration companies will help you create a plan to use that best works for your company. Be sure all of your Utility Shut-off locations are properly labeled. Identify all local emergency contact information including fire, police and hospitals.

The SERVPRO Ready Plan is a tool we have developed to aid our communities. We are a proven leader in our industry and strive to build our communities. We are a dedicated provider of emergency services-we strive to make it “Like it never even happened.” What we will do is go walk you through the process, take pictures, finish the booklet and hand it to the businesses. Free of charge. No obligation. It will hold all the information you need in an Emergency….at your fingertips.

We are SERVPRO. We are here help.

Outdoor Fire Safety

6/15/2020 (Permalink)

Outdoor Cooking Summer Outdoor living is like nothing else! Enjoy it safely!

Summer Outdoor Fire Safety

It’s Summer Time!

We want to remind our community of simple safety measures to keep your summer celebrations happy and safe.

Outdoor living becomes a large part of households over the summer. While this is a lot of fun, we do need to keep certain safety measures in mind.

Here are a few tips from experts on how to keep your cookouts fun and safe. Experts want everyone to keep in mind many common-sense practices. These include both fire safety and grilling safety.

Some of those fire safety and grilling practices include:

  • **DO NOT USE GASOLINE** or any other petroleum-based substance. These are actually explosive rather than being a proper fuel to build a simple fire.
  • Keep any flammable substances far and safely away from any fire or hot surface. This keeps any accidental spark or heat ignition, from happening.
  • Never leave a flame unattended. Be it firepit or BBQ Grills-never leave it unattended. Things can get out of control quickly.
  • Always follow campground fire-safety rules. If a fire ring is not available or you have not brought your own, be sure to select a spot on which to build a fire that is a safe distance (at least 15 feet) away and downwind from dry grass, trees, and tents.
  • Always keep the size of grill or pit fires to a manageable size. Keep them so that if you have a pail of sand, water, an extinguisher or baking soda nearby-you can keep it under control quickly.
  • Keep children and pets always at least 3 feet away from grills or campfires. And keep matches and lighters away from children at all times.
  • Always make sure that a fire is completely doused and out before leaving a campsite, covering the grill or retiring for the evening.

These are just a few helpful hints to keep everyone safe and have a happy summer.

Why Choose Our Company

6/15/2020 (Permalink)

Preventative Bio hazard Cleaning SERVPRO Team working together to complete a cleaning

What can we do to help you?

SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac has been here for our community for over 40 years.

We know how to spot potential hazards to property and/or health. Our crews are trained on fire, water, mold and re-construction.

Our moto is “Like it never even happened.” And that’s what we strive to accomplish. We inspect sites to  make sure any underlying issues are identified and corrected-so it’s done right the first time.

We work quickly and efficiently on every job, both our field crew and our office crew. We are built to reply immediately and work with full crews on clean-up around your schedule. We want to make sure damage is quickly resolved to prevent any long-term issues such as mold or mildew.

Our office team works hard to have crews to you when your schedule allows. They also will help you with your insurance claims from start to finish.

We have years of experience dealing with insurance companies. We know that filling out and submitting all the necessary paperwork can be confusing and sometimes overwhelming. We want to make this experience as painless as possible and you get paid quickly.

We also can help with the overwhelmingly daunting task of going through items to know what to keep and what is damaged beyond redemption. After any devastating event-we are here to help.

We are here for you.

24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year

Mold can be scary-don't Panic

6/15/2020 (Permalink)

Servpro Equipment We can have whatever equipment your home needs!

What to do when you suspect Mold?

Mold is scary.

Mold can do a lot of damage in a very little area.

Don’t let it scare you too much. Know what to do and how to keep your family safe. Mold can make you and your family ill, it looks gross, it can weaken structure and disrupt the sale of a home.

If you think you may have mold, what do you do? Where do you start? Who do you call (if you need to)?

Start with testing. Start with know what you have, where you have it and educate yourself on what to do. No homeowner wants to hear that they have to test for mold. These tests can get expensive and we all hear the worst-case scenarios. If it turns out mold has developed-first you need to find the reason. Do you have a slow leak? Was it a large spill that just wasn’t cleaned up correctly? Is there a lack of venting in an area that needs more?

Mold removal. Makes your home look like a hazmat scene and can turn everything upside down. Typically, to clean mold you have to go down to the basics-that could be gutting a room…. or two…. or more-Ouch!

However-If taken care of early, cost could be very minimal. If you suspect an issue, it would be worth it to hire an inspection company. Keep in mind-It can get to the several hundred-dollar range. If you want to start small-you could buy a home mold testing kit ($10-50$)-but let the buyer beware, these kits have a reputation for being unreliable. This could be a soft start.

When you confirm that you do have mold, don’t panic. This may or may not be a major problem. Assess the situation and seek the advice of professionals. Smaller areas and issues, you may be able to do the work yourself. Always seek consultation of a professional before you attempt it all yourself.  Be sure to research how to properly take care of your mold issue.  

Avoid Scams. Just like any home cleaning, repair, etc- situations-there are those there to take advantage of the situations. Having different professionals and checking references/reviews will help get you on the right track. This can also help you to watch for price gouging. Price gouging happens more than anyone really realizes. An accurate Mold estimate can be difficult because there are so many variables, but having 2 or more can help give you an idea of where you should be. Make sure the company is licensed for these services as well.

The largest way to prevent a major issue is to stay aware. Check your pipes, check your vents, make sure things like your washing machine, dishwasher, tub/shower, etc. are draining correctly. Be on top of certain things around your home: Caulk around fixtures, clean your gutters, Caulk around your windows, Take care of roof leaks, check basements/crawlspaces/attics.

The main thing to keep in mind is that Mold can be fixed. Take care in taking care of your home!

Frozen Pipes: Tips to avoid frozen pipes

1/20/2020 (Permalink)

Frozen Burst Pipe Frozen pipes are a very real issue. There are so many ways to avoid this issue. Take proper precautions to avoid having to deal with this issue.

When the temperatures start to drop, our pipes start to fall for a risk of freezing then bursting. When a pipe bursts, the results can be catastrophic. Pipes are one of the most common causes of property damage during cold weather. The resulting water damage easily adds up to $5,000 or more.

Most risk areas are those in unheated spaces. Typically, these are basements, attics and garages-however, even pipes that run through cabinets can freeze. There are a few things that can be done to avoid any issues and additional cost.

*Pipe insulation is extremely inexpensive and easy to use. Use the insulation liberally and be sure to use it on any vulnerable pipes.

*Keep your garage doors closed, especially if you have any water supply lines that run through the garage. Just that little bit of barrier can make a large difference.  

*Open cabinet doors in kitchen and bathrooms to allow for some warmer air to circulate if you have pluming behind those cabinets.  

*Let the cold-water drip from a faucet linked to exposed pipes. Just a little bit of running water makes a large difference and helps prevent pipes from freezing.  

*Keep the thermostat the same temperature at all times during the colder temperatures.

*Do not set your temperature any lower than 55° F, even if you plan on being away. Keeping the temperature stable will help prevent frozen pipes.

*Add insulation. This can be easily added to basements, crawl spaces and/or attics. What you are wanting to do is prevent drafts, seal cracks and eliminate any openings around windows, doors or anywhere air would come in. This will save on your energy bill as well!

*If you have a room that has pipes and seems to be colder, add a space heater to this room where pipes may be at risk. Please follow all safety regulations associated with the space heater and use caution.

If a pipe has broken-start by turning off the water at the main shutoff valve. This is usually at the water meter or where the main line enters the house. Contact SERVPRO to begin the clean up process and contact a licensed plumber

Most Common Fire Safety Tips for Senior Citizens

1/15/2020 (Permalink)

Senior Fire Safety Working together is the best way to keep our Senior Citizens safe.

We all have Senior Citizen family, friends or neighbors-that we all keep an eye on. These individuals are special to us and to our families and we like to do what we can to ensure that they stay safe. Doesn’t matter if it is clearing their sidewalk for them or setting up pills for them, everything little thing is important.

Something many don’t think of is going over fire safety. Many enjoy the comforts of home and we do everything in our power to keep them in their home. Part of that includes their wellbeing. Again, we add rails to the bathroom and grips to rugs. However, have you made sure their smoke detectors work? Do you know that they are safe cooking? What else needs to be done to keep them safe and give you peace of mind?

Test Smoke Alarms Regularly and Have Proper Alarms

Smoke can be a silent killer, especially for Senior citizens.  Individuals with hearing problems who tend to sleep without a hearing aid could be a victim.  Having a working smoke alarm in every room and hallway is a great start, but they should be effective for the individuals. Strobe alarms are a great option. Seniors also can install alarms that shake the bed to rouse them in the event of a fire. Most importantly of all, make sure to test smoke alarms every month. This keeps them in compliance and makes sure the alarms they have are proper so they are always in compliance.

If They Smoke, Please Remind Them the Proper Place to Do So

Smoking is the number one cause of fire deaths in the country. Please remind senior citizens never to attempt smoking in bed. Falling asleep with a cigarette lit or dropping ashes onto carpet, covers or even clothing can cause an instant problem. Another hazard is to smoke near flammable oxygen tanks. Seniors should be using deeper or heavier ashtrays and avoid ashes flipping or falling onto a rug. The best way to put butts out is with sand, water or dirt. Take great care to make sure our friends, family and neighbors are safe.

Create a Fire Escape Plan

Seniors tend to have less than three minutes to escape in the event of a fire. Everyone should have a fire escape plan and practice it, knowing all the accessible exits and meeting areas. For seniors, especially those suffering from dementia or Alzheimer’s who have escape proof doors, it is important they have a prearranged escort in the event of a fire. Making sure neighbors and family are aware of the plan and know where the escape routes are is to minimize injury.

Kitchen Safety

Seniors need to be willing and able to respond to an emergency in the kitchen while cooking. There are so many things that can cause injury in the Kitchen-Fire being one.  Most kitchen fires begin because food is left unattended.  If they must leave the kitchen while cooking, they should always turn the burner off. The kitchen should never be left unattended while there is food cooking-even if it is intended to be a short period of time. If for some reason they need to leave the kitchen-have a plan to always take a pot holder, spoon, towel or anything to remind them that they have something in the kitchen. A great reminder for seniors is to never cook with loose or dangling clothing that can easily ignite and potentially start a major fire.

Have a Whistle

Have their phone and whistle at bedside. The whistle lets people know where you are and gives you a way to warn others of the fire. Escape is always the top priority. Call the fire department when you are out. If trapped- use the phone to call for help. Seniors with wheelchairs or walkers should check exit routes ahead of time to be sure they are accessible or plan an alternate route.  If impairment makes it impossible to escape in the event of a fire, discuss this concern with the landlord, family, neighbors or check with the fire department.

Don’t Overload Outlets or Extension Cords

This is a major fire concern. Having too many extension cords and too many items plugged in can easily spark a fire. Make sure no more than one major appliance is plugged into an outlet at a time and all outlets are kept responsibly used. If more outlets are required for a particular area, hire an electrician to install proper outlets.

If you have questions about fire, smoke or soot damage, contact SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac. 309-827-7500

Kitchen Fire Prevention

6/26/2019 (Permalink)

More home fires start in the kitchen than anywhere else in the home. Cooking is involved in over 100,000 home fires every year. This number could be greatly reduced if people paid more attention when they cooked and practiced simple fire safety behaviors.

Dress to cook

While you may look good wearing a suit or a long dress, you’ll be safer if you wear clothing that’s more kitchen-appropriate while you’re cooking. Loose and long clothing can accidentally catch on fire. If you ever noticed a cooking apron, it has cut-off or shortened sleeves, and it has string that is meant to keep the apron and your clothes tight to your body.

Use appliances carefully

Kitchen appliances can cause fires if not used and maintained correctly. Keeps your cords away from oil and liquids. Remove food debris and oil from the appliances. Replace your power cords if they are damaged in some way. If an appliance is malfunctioning, stop using it and get it fixed or replaced.

Keep a fire extinguisher nearby

In the event of a fire, an extinguisher can quickly stop it from spreading. Don’t have the extinguisher stored too close too the stove, as that can make it hard to reach during a stove fire. Ensure that you know how to use it, too.

Be prepared

In addition to having, and knowing how to use, a fire extinguisher, you need to know how to react in case of a fire. Don’t use water to put out the fire, and don’t attempt to transfer a burning pot or pan to the sink—doing so can unwittingly cause the fire to spread. Quickly use an extinguisher if you have one. If the fire is getting out of control, quickly leave the home and call the authorities.

Don’t leave the kitchen

The main culprit of kitchen fires is an unattended stove. If you have things cooking, don’t leave the kitchen. If you must leave, turn off the stove or oven, and remove your pots and pans from the heat. If your eyes are on the stove, you will vastly reduce the chances of a fire occurring in the kitchen.

Keep the stove top clean and clear

A cluttered stove area can cause a fire. Kitchen towels, paper, appliance cords, uncovered oil, and other flammable items need to be kept away from the stove top. Be sure to clean the stove top regularly. Food debris and leftover grease can easily ignite with enough heat. Also, before you begin cooking, remove excess oil and grease from the exterior of your pots and pans.

Be careful with cooking oils

Avoid using an oil with a low smoke point for high heat cooking, as it can catch fire. Also, don’t carelessly discard hot cooking oil. Many fires have been caused by putting hot oil in a garbage can with other flammable items.

Kitchen fires can occur for a variety of reasons. However, if you apply these kitchen fire prevention tips, you will greatly reduce the chance of your kitchen catching on fire.

If you have questions about fire, smoke or soot damage, contact SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac. 309-827-7500

Interesting Storm Facts

6/26/2019 (Permalink)

Interesting Facts About Thunderstorms

  • The first stage of a thunderstorm, called the developing stage, occurs when a cumulus cloud is pushed upward by air. In the developing stage there is not usually much rain but lightning can be seen.
  • The second stage of a thunderstorm, called the mature stage, occurs when the rising warm air reaches warmer air and it spreads out into a 'cap'. This creates frozen water droplets that fall to the earth, melting along the way - unless the updraft is very strong which creates hail. It is during this stage that lightning and thunder and strong winds and rain occur.
  • The third stage of a thunderstorm, called the dissipating stage, occurs when a downdraft pushes to the ground essentially cutting off the thunderstorm's inflow.
  • The multi-cell cluster thunderstorm is the most common type, characterized by inner mature storms at the center and dissipating storms around the outer edge, and can include weak tornadoes.
  • The multi-cell line thunderstorm is characterized by a line of severe thunderstorms that are either in front of or part of a cold front, and can include hail, strong wind, tornadoes and waterspouts.
  • The super-cell thunderstorm is characterized by extremely strong wind, powerful updrafts, very severe weather, and strong tornadoes. Most tornadoes originate in this type of storm.
  • The severe thunderstorm is characterized by strong winds, funnel clouds and sometimes tornadoes.
  • The sound of thunder is made when lightning's heat flash causes the air to expand rapidly, and then shrink rapidly. This violent air disturbance causes the sound of thunder.
  • To be classified as a thunderstorm lightning must be present.
  • People often hide under trees to escape thunderstorms. It's a dangerous place because trees are often struck by lightning.
  • Thunderstorms often occur in warm, humid conditions.
  • Some thunderstorms look like cauliflower in the atmosphere.
  • The hail produced in some thunderstorms breaks windows, kills wildlife, and even dents cars.
  • Lightning isn't the only danger caused by thunderstorms. They can also produce flash floods, strong damaging winds, and fires.
  • As soon as thunder is heard it is best to find safe shelter. Thunderstorms can begin very quickly and if you are able to hear the thunder then you are close enough to be struck by the storm's lightning.

If your central Illinois home has been damaged by storms call SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac. 309-827-7500.

Common Signs Of Leaking Pipes

6/26/2019 (Permalink)

Five Common Signs Of Leaking Pipes:

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, as many as 10 percent of American homes are losing 90 gallons of water each day due to leaky pipes. That is 177 billion gallons of water each year.  

Ceiling stains

Sloshing some water out of the bathtub and onto the floor won’t cause enough water seepage to damage your ceiling.  The internal pipes that carry water to that second-floor bathroom, however, definitely can if they’re leaking along the way. 

Rusty pipes, fuse boxes or appliances

Discoloration, stains, dimpling, and flaking are all signs that your pipes may be corroding. If you notice rust occurring around pipes, this is a clear indication of water damage. If you notice your fuse box is starting to rust or collect moisture, that’s another big red flag that water is running free inside your walls. 

Damaged flooring

Bathroom floors rarely suffer water damage unless there is a leak. However, if you notice your floor buckling, staining or cracking, hidden water may be the source. 

Wet spots, spongy or soft flooring and loose tiles could all be signs of water damage. Whether the water came from a pipe underneath the floor or traveled there from another area, look into it as soon as possible before the current water damage causes a bigger issue.

Paint or wallpaper discoloring 

As moisture seeps into your walls, the paint will start showing signs of damage. You may notice peeling, discoloration, blistering or even cracks and warping. 

Since drywall and wood readily absorb moisture, water breaks down the fibers and causes them to feel spongy and soft. If you notice chalky textures, changing wall paint or signs of peeling, water damage is most likely the culprit.

Persistent odors

The most common odor associated with water damage is a musty, mildew smell. While you may be able to detect the source of the scent, it’s not always obvious. 

Contact SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac if you experience water or mold damage. 

Why SERVPRO For Fire Restoration

6/26/2019 (Permalink)

Fire damage restoration is a task that should only be tackled by professionals. 

The aftermath of a fire is not only a charred mess, but it can also include water damage and structural damage necessitated by firefighters to controlled and assure a fire is extinguished.

Fire-retardant chemicals, soot and smoke damage permeate the area and can create toxicity that must be handled with care to prevent health issues.

Professionals can maximize salvaging your belongings and prevent further damage.

SERVPRO of Bloomington/Normal will come to your aid as soon as the fire is extinguished by emergency personnel. We will work quickly to assure your property is secure through our board up services.

Why SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac for fire restoration?

Inspection

Once the fire services are done controlling the fire, our experts carefully and efficiently inspect the site for damage. They will classify the damage according to the cause i.e. fire, water, chemicals, and smoke. After determining the type and level of damage, we shall create a custom detailed report and generate a restoration plan. We will work with you closely throughout the restoration process.

Eliminate smoke odors

We will eliminate smoke and odors from the site. Smoke is corrosive and may cause further damage to your possessions and so it is imperative to eliminate it first.

Remove residue

We remove soot from the entire structure as well as removing wet carpets to discourage mold growth.

Protect undamaged property

There may be parts of your property that were not affected by the fire. The restoration team will seal off these areas to avoid damage from smoke, soot, and odors. Items in these areas will be moved to a storage facility through inventory and packing to ensure their well-being and safety.

Repair

We will repair, replace, and repaint the affected areas. The items damaged beyond repair shall be filed in an inventory which we will follow up with your insurers. Belongings that can be cleaned are restored.

For fire restoration in central Illinois contact SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac.  309-827-7500

Why SERVPRO For Water Damage

6/25/2019 (Permalink)

Water damage in your home or business can be caused by a variety of things. From natural disasters to malfunctioning plumbing systems. SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac is here to clean up water damage of any size.

Water damage can be very frustrating. Our advanced equipment helps to detect hidden moisture, extract the standing water quickly, and thoroughly clean and dry your home and belongings. We finish the job with professional deodorization and sanitizing agents for your comfort and safety. We will remove the affected materials, deodorize, and restore your home or business to its original condition.

Repair

Our first step is to resolve the cause of the water. Whether it’s a leaky dishwasher, broken supply line, or sewage backup, the restoration process begins with fixing the problem. Without identifying and resolving the cause of the water damage, you will only have more problems in the future.

Water Extraction

Once the cause of the water is fixed, we can remove standing water and sewage from the affected areas. Depending on the specific damage, water extraction may take place after removal and disposal.

Removal and Disposal

We then inspect the damage and remove materials that cannot be restored. This may include materials like plaster, drywall, ceilings, carpeting, and carpet padding as well as personal items affected by the damage. Unfortunately, furniture, paper-products like books, magazines, and newspapers, and other porous items may need to be discarded.

Dry Out

After disposing of materials that cannot be restored, we use air movers and dehumidifiers to dry out areas and materials that can be salvaged. We closely monitor our equipment to ensure the fastest drying time possible and prevent further damage. Dry out may take several days depending on the extent of the damage.

Reconstruction

The final step to water damage restoration is rebuilding and restoring your home or business to its original condition. This may include hanging new drywall, laying new carpeting, installing new cabinets, and refinishing hardwood floors. It may be necessary to replace damaged appliances or fix structural issues with your property as well.

When it comes to water damage in your home or business, SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac is here for you 24/7/ 365.

Fire Safety In The Workplace

6/25/2019 (Permalink)

Workplace fires injure many workers each year. Their injuries lead to untold tumult, disrupting their lives and their families. Even in those fortunate cases where no one is injured, the property damage caused by fire can be enough to bankrupt many businesses. The National Fire Protection Association estimates that fires cost industrial and manufacturing employers alone over $1 billion in property damage each year.

Establishing and maintaining fire protection in the workplace

  • Make a periodic clean-up of entire work site and keep grass and weeds under control.
  • Regularly dispose of combustible debris and scrap from your work area.
  • Use only approved containers and tanks for storage, handling, and transport of combustible and flammable liquid.
  • Always perform evaluation procedures before performing operations that present fire hazards like welding.
  • Never pile or lay material in a way that it covers or blocks access to firefighting equipment.
  • Make sure to use only approved containers for the separation and disposal of combustible refuse. Remember to always replace the lid.
  • Never store flammable materials within 10 feet of a building or other structure.
  • Stack and pile all materials in orderly and stable piles.
  • Never let unnecessary combustible materials get accumulated in any part of your work area.

Safety measures for workplace fire equipment

  • Prohibit smoking at or around work areas where fire hazards are present. Put up signs, saying no smoking signs or open flames.
  • Configure an alarm system that consists of both visual and audible signals (bells, sirens, whistles, blinking lights).
  • Post reporting instructions and local Fire Department codes on info boards, common areas, and areas near the phone.
  • First, inspect and maintain fire fighting equipment regularly.
  • Place an adequate number of firefighting equipment in plain view in your work areas. When appropriate, label the location of each one and make sure it is properly rated.
  • Provide employees with proper training in fire prevention and protection.

If your business or home has been damaged by fire, contact SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac 309-827-7500

Thunderstorms And Your Electronics

6/24/2019 (Permalink)

A thunderstorm is an atmospheric disturbance that involves lightning and thunder. It may be accompanied by torrential rain, hail or high winds. A severe thunderstorm can cause flooding, fires, power failures and electrocution, and result in serious damage.

While surges due to thunderstorms are rare, you should at the very least unplug your high-ticket electronics, like your TV, computer and gaming console.

Be safe

An important thing to remember when pulling the plug on your electronics, is that you can be electrocuted if you touch a cord during a surge. It's best to unplug items before a storm gets to your area.

Will a surge protector help?

Many people think that surge protectors that you plug into the wall will save their electronics from power surges due to storms, however that is not the case. 

Surge protectors are meant to protect against common, small surges in the electrical grid that happen from time to time. They can help reduce the power surge before it reaches your device, but they are not designed to protect items from the massive surge of electricity that happens from a lightning strike during a storm.

What can protect your devices during a storm is a whole house surge protector or suppressor. These are much more expensive than an outlet surge protector and are meant to be installed on your house's main electrical panel.

If you experience Storm damage or flooding, contact SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac. 309-827-7500

Rainwater Damage

6/24/2019 (Permalink)

Water damage can cause big problems for homeowners. It can be a sneaky issue that many people don’t discover until it has become a big, expensive problem.

Water has the potential to damage your home beyond affordable repair, with heavy structural consequences that include mold, wood rot, and even foundation cracks. If you’re lucky, you’ll catch it early and stop it before it spreads. But even small leaks that allow rainwater into the house can cause major problems.

The best way to deal with water damage is to stop it before it starts. Here are some measures that you can take to prevent water from entering your home from outside.

House Exterior

The exterior of your house is its first line of defense against water damage. Protect your home from the outside in by maintaining the exterior.

Roof

Your roof should keep water out of your house. Neglecting it could lead to a whole host of problems, the worst of which includes extensive water damage that could compromise the structure of your home. Most roofs have a lifespan of 20 to 30 years, but that is no guarantee that it will last that long. Climate, weather conditions, and even nearby trees can cause damage to roof shingles. Periodically check for damaged, loose, or missing shingles.

Windows and Doors

Water can seep in through the space around window and door frames if they’re not properly sealed. Don’t wait for a leak. Inspect the outside of your windows and doors. Any large cracks between the frame and the house can be injected with insulating foam sealant. A fresh coat of paint on window and door frames can block moisture from penetrating the wood.

Proper Drainage

You can take measures to keep water out of your home, but waterproofing alone isn’t enough to protect your home from water damage. If water isn’t properly diverted away from the base of your house, your foundation could be at risk. And even the best waterproofing measures are no match for standing water that collects on or around your house in areas of poor drainage.

Gutters

Depending on surrounding tree coverage, gutters need to be cleaned out two to six times a year to ensure proper flow of rainwater.Making sure your gutters function properly is critical to protecting your home from water damage. If your gutters are full of leaves and pine needles, or not angled properly to funnel water to the downspout, then water will run down the side of your house and collect at the base, which could put your foundation at risk.

Check Your Downspouts

Downspouts should direct water at least three feet from the exterior walls of a home.Gutters send water out through the downspout, which should funnel the water away from your home. If the downspout doesn’t extend far enough, then it could instead be funneling water directly into a puddle at the bottom of your house.Downspouts should extend at least two to three feet from the house. If your downspout is long enough, but you can still see water collecting at the base of your house, then you may need to install a drainage pipe.

If you suspect water damage in your home or business contact us today. SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac   309-827-7500

Basement Fire Prevention

6/23/2019 (Permalink)

While flooding, water damage and mold are always a concern in the basement of your home or business, preventing a fire is just as important. Here are some tips to help keep your basement safe from a possible fire.

A smoke alarm should be installed in the basement.

Basement smoke alarms should be cleaned once a month to remove dust build-up. This ensures that it works properly throughout the year. In addition, the basement smoke alarm should be connected to the other smoke alarms in the home.

Install a carbon monoxide alarm as well, especially if there is heating equipment that burns gas, oil or wood in your basement.

Flammable materials.

Materials such as debris, paper, and textiles, should be kept away from heating equipment. Oily rags should be put in airtight containers and away from heat sources. Trash should also be kept out of the basement.

Equip your basement with arc-fault circuit interrupters.

These devices prevent fires in electrical switches from occurring by shutting off the circuit when an unintentional arc (discharge of electricity) occurs within the circuit.

Keep the stairs free of clutter.

This will provide less fuel for a fire and to be able to quickly escape the basement in case of an emergency.

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?

We can help. SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac – (309) 827-7500

Preventing Laundry Room Fires

6/21/2019 (Permalink)

According to the National Fire Protection Agency, over 10,000 house fires reported annually are attributed to clothes dryers and washing machines and caused millions of dollars in property damage. Numbers like this are not uncommon for any year in the U.S., yet many people are unaware of the hazards or the simple steps which can prevent them.

Possible Fire Hazards

Visible Lint buildup in the dryer’s lint trap

Unseen Lint buildup inside the dryer, from lint which gets past the trap

Unseen Lint which collects inside the dryer hose

Dryer hoses which are crushed or kinked by cramped dryer-to-wall spaces

Outside vents blocked with lint buildup, rodent nests, bird’s nests, objects or materials placed too close to the vents, and other obstructions

Flammable Items inside laundry appliances, including plastic or rubber items like bath mats, diaper pants, clothing items padded with foam rubber, or items with flammable chemicals like rags soaked with oil or gasoline

Friction from slipping power belts caused by worn belts or excessive loads

Flammable materials or debris allowed under or too close to laundry appliances.

Prevention 

Always clean out the lint trap between every dryer load

Keep the areas under and behind your washer and dryer clean and uncluttered

Keep the area near the outside dryer vent clear of stored materials or objects which could impede or block the dryer’s exhaust

Remove the outside dryer vent cover on a regular basis and inspect the space behind it for obvious debris. However, obstructions in these wall spaces are not always visible. So, you should have a professional check and clean these on a regular basis.

Have a professional inspect the dryer and clean out any invisible lint buildup on a regular basis.

Have a professional clear the dryer hose of lint on a regular basis

If you’re unsure of the safety of your washer or dryer, never leave the house or go to bed after starting a load of clothes.

If you have experienced a laundry room fire, Contact SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac.  309-827-7500

Lightning Safety

6/21/2019 (Permalink)

On average, lightning causes more deaths in the U.S. than tornadoes, floods, or hurricanes. One study puts lightning deaths in the U.S. at 7,741 between 1940 and 1981. And some research suggests that these numbers may be too low by 30 to 50 percent. Illinois experiences about 2-3 deaths and 8 serious injuries per year.

Lightning heats the surrounding gases in the air to around 50,000 degrees! This causes a rapid expansion of the air which produces thunder. A single lightning stroke also contains an enormous amount of electricity, enough to supply power to several homes for a month. The heat and electricity pose the greatest risk to the individual. Most lightning deaths and injuries occur when people are caught outdoors.

SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac

KEEPING YOURSELF SAFE FROM LIGHTNING

  • Stay alert for fast-changing weather conditions. It does not have to be raining where you are for lightning to be a threat. Many people are struck before the rain begins or after it ends at their location.
  • Avoid being the tallest object in the area, and stay away from other tall objects such as a small group of tall trees.
  • Unplug all unnecessary appliances and stay off the phone.
  • Get inside a sturdy building. Do not stand by open windows, doors or on patios during a thunderstorm.
  • Get off farm equipment, golf carts or other open vehicles. A hard top car with the windows shut is relatively safe
  • Use the “flash to bang” technique. Sound travels about 1 mile every 5 seconds. When you see the lightning count the seconds until you hear thunder. If 5 seconds elapse, the thunderstorm is one mile away. Ten seconds equals two miles and 15 seconds means the lightning bolt was three miles away.
  • What is a “safe” distance from lightning? There is no absolute rule, but consider taking prompt protective action if lightning is occurring within 3 miles of your location. Be aware that lightning can strike the ground ten or more miles away from the thunderstorm with blue sky above!
  • Lightning may be about to strike near you if you feel your hair stand on end or your skin tingle. Crouch down or drop to your knees, but do not lie flat on the ground.

If your home or business has experienced storm or lightning damage call SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac  309-827-7500

Crawl Space Water Damage

6/21/2019 (Permalink)

If water builds up in a crawl space, a professional water damage restoration company should be called immediately. The experts at SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac have been tackling crawl space water for over 30 years. The excess water in a crawl space can come from a number of different sources.

  • A leaking kitchen waste line
  • A leaking sewer drain line
  • Flooding coming from a nearby river, brook or stream
  • Sprinkler water coming through the vents of the crawl space
  • A naturally occurring high groundwater table
  • Gutter downspouts that are directed incorrectly
  • Homeowners watering their plants and foliage too frequently
  • Swimming pool leaks on rare occasions

Water or damp soil in the crawl space area has the potential to cause extensive water damage, structural problems and health concerns. If your home has a heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) duct system in the crawlspace and it becomes affected by the moisture, it can spew unhealthy air into your home or business. The moisture can increase microbes in the air and create dangerous particles which can be harmful to breathe.

Crawl space water can also provide an area for mold to grow that can spread to inhabited areas, not to mention causing sub-floors to buckle and warp under the humidity the water causes. Should a sewer line in your crawl space rupture, the raw sewage that gets released into the crawl space can cause horrible odors in the living space of a home, as well as possible health concerns from taking in sewer gas.

If you see or suspect water in a crawl space contact SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac

Why SERVPRO For Smoke Remediation

6/21/2019 (Permalink)

At SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac  we know the massive damage a fire can do to your home. Smoke touches everything in your home. Even in a small house fire, smoke can damage your entire home. Odors from smoke can cling to every room and your personal belongings can smell like smoke as well. The soot from the fire can damage your walls, even if they were not touched by the flames.

Smoke Remediation is an important part of restoring your home after a fire. Smoke odor can linger for years without proper remediation. If your home has been damaged by fire, it is important to contact a professional that specializes in smoke remediation.

At SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac, we are experts in smoke remediation and odor removal. A house fire can be devastating and we understand the need to make your house into a home again.

  • 24/7 emergency board-up service
  • Prompt damage assessment and estimates
  • Property removal, cleaning and storage of your personal belongings
  • Cleaning, including removal of debris, water extraction, disinfection and dehumidifying
  • Smoke remediation, which includes odor removal and ozone treatment to remove harmful toxins in the air.
  • Restoring your home – structural repairs, painting, floor restoration and refinishing

We work hard to restore your home after a disaster. Our highly trained smoke remediation specialists and decades of experience means we can work with you and your insurance company to completely restore your home in a timely manner.

For fire, smoke and soot damage contact SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac  309-827-7500

Commercial Mold

6/21/2019 (Permalink)

The best way to control mold growth in commercial buildings, office buildings, manufacturing areas and schools is to prevent moisture problems before they start. Here are some tips to reduce water and moisture and keep your commercial property free from contamination.

- Fix any plumbing leaks as soon as possible. Standing water is a prime cause of mold growth.

- Watch for condensation and wet spots around your building foundation, roofs or ceilings.

- Keep any heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) drip pans clean and flowing properly. Be sure that regular building/HVAC inspections and maintenance are scheduled and performed.

- Dehumidifiers can help indoor humidity. It should be below 60% relative humidity or 30-50%, if possible.

- Keep your foundations dry. There should be proper drainage away from the building foundation. If rainwater continues to enter your basement from the outside, mold growth can occur.

In many cases, the inspections and mold removal work can be performed during a business or school’s off-hours in order to limit any disruptions.


If you suspect mold in your commercial property, SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac can help. 309-827-7500

Storm Power Outage Preparation

6/20/2019 (Permalink)

In central Illinois each season brings its weather-related threats, including heavy wet snow or ice storms in the winter, thunderstorms and lightning in the spring and summer, and wind and heavy rain in the fall.

By making some simple preparations, you can make outages less stressful for your family and yourself.

  • Keep your power company phone numbers by the telephone.
  • Keep a storm kit ready. You should not wait until a storm is bearing down on central Illinois to prepare a kit, because some outages happen with little warning. Storm kits should include the following:
    • A first aid kit and family prescription medications.
    • Extra blankets for each member of the family.
    • At least one regular (corded) phone. The convenience of cordless phones has made them very popular, but they stop working when the power goes out. A corded phone will still work during most outages, allowing you to call out for information and to report the outage. Even if you have a cellular phone, keep in mind that the backup power to cell towers may shut down if the outage lasts long enough.
    • At least one battery-operated radio. During lengthy outages (six hours or more), local radio stations can become increasingly important sources of information.
    • At least one flashlight for every member of the family.
    • Batteries for your flashlights and radios.
    • Canned food for three days and a non-electric can opener. Most outages are over in hours, of course, but severe storms may leave damage that last several days. In most instances, having a three-day supply of food will take a family through the worst of the storm. For obvious reasons, families will want food that does not require heating or refrigeration.
    • Three gallons of drinking water per family member. A healthy adult will need one gallon of water per day, so this will prepare your family for a three-day outage.
  • When a storm is on its way, gas up your car before it arrives. During widespread disasters, gas stations may not have electricity to pump gasoline.
  • If you have a medical need for electricity, make sure your power company knows. During lengthy outages, most power companies makes an extra effort to provide updated outage information to those members who need electricity to power oxygen pumps or other medical equipment.
  • If you have a medical need for electricity, have a relocation plan which answers the following questions:
    • What services, electrical and otherwise, must I have to protect my health in an emergency?
    • Where will I go to find those services if my home is without power for more than a few hours?
    • Who will take me there in an emergency?
    • Have I made sure that person knows I am relying on them for transportation in an emergency?

SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac  is here for your storm recovery needs. 309-827-7500

Appliances Likely to Cause Water Damage

6/20/2019 (Permalink)

Hot Water Heater

Among the top five sources leading to water damage is your hot water heater. A small investment in an annual inspection will help prevent leaks and the expensive repairs that come with it. Be attentive to corrosion and other factors as your heater ages and replace it every 10 years.

  • 69 percent of failures are due to a leak or burst.
  • After 12 years, 75 percent of hot water heaters will fail and cost an average of $4,000 in damage.
  • Flush your tank every 6 months to remove sediment.

Air Conditioner

Installing a drainpipe will remove the overflowing water and direct it outside or to a household sewer. This is an alternative to using a drain pan, which will only help contain any leaks that may occur for about two minutes.

  • Attic air conditioners can cause the most damage because water can leak throughout the entire home.

Washing Machine

Leaks around or clamps in the water hose are a warning sign of future failure. Do a monthly personal inspection on your hoses to look out for cracking, dryness or rust, leaving space between the machine and the wall for movement as the wash cycle is running. Replace your hoses every five years despite their outward appearance. Don’t forget to follow your washing machine instructions and turn off the water supply when you leave home for vacation!

  • 6 % of failures occur when a home is unoccupied and end up being two and a half times more severe than a house that is occupied.
  • 78 percent of hose failures occur in an appliance that is less than 11 years old.

Refrigerator

The most common cause of a leaky refrigerator is the defrost drain having a freeze or clog. You’ll need to thaw the ice and flush your drain with hot water. Improper sealing can cause excess condensation in attempt to keep cool. Check the rubber seals along the door to assure a tight close. Your ice maker can become the mess maker, check the hose or waterline to assure they are connected properly.

Dishwasher

Hoses, valves, switches are the plumbing connections that could be causing the puddle of water on your floor. Let’s not forget that dishwashers are manually run and an overflow of water can come from adding too much detergent to each cycle. If your dishwasher is over 9 years old it may be time for a replacement.

If you suffer water damage from one of these appliances or any reason at all, contact SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac

Why SERVPRO For Mold?

6/20/2019 (Permalink)

Mold can be very elusive, growing undetected in cracks and even within the walls of your home. A thorough mold inspection of your property must be performed to locate potential mold infestations as well as the source of water fueling the mold growth.

SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac will conduct a visual examination of the structure as well as use advanced technology like infrared cameras and moisture readings of surrounding structures to detect excessive moisture. SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac employ mold remediation protocols that meet state and local building codes to ensure complete eradication.

It is critical to ensure that mold removal is complete. Ineffective mold removal will result in continued mold growth and the need for additional mold remediation services in the future. Clearance testing after mold remediation services ensure that the mold removal is successful and that mold is no longer a problem.

Mold remediation is a job that demands prompt attention. Mold often creates a musty odor and mold can create serious health complications. If you don’t actually know how to go about the process of mold removal and cleaning, attempting to get rid of it on your own could actually make the problem worse while putting your own health at risk.

We specialize in water and mold damage restoration, the cornerstone of our business. We have the training and expertise to safely handle any mold situation.

SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac employees live and work in this community too; we might even be neighbors. As a locally owned and operated business, we are close by and ready to help with your mold damaged property.

If you suspect mold in your central Illinois home or business, call us today 309-827-7500



Cleaning Your Commercial Carpet

6/20/2019 (Permalink)

How should you clean your commercial carpet to keep it looking good and give it the longest possible lifespan?

Vacuuming

Regular vacuuming is one of the most effective (and cost-effective) ways of removing dirt from your carpeting. But you have to make sure it’s done right. That means using the right vacuum and going slowly over the carpet in both east/west and north/south directions.

How often should you vacuum your carpets?

  • For heavy traffic areas like entrances and ground floor halls, you’ll definitely want to vacuum daily.
  • Areas with medium traffic like general offices areas or corridors should ideally be vacuumed daily, or at least 3-4 times a week.
  • Lower traffic areas like conference rooms and executive offices can usually be done weekly, unless they see a high amount of traffic.

Spot Cleaning

Individual stains can really diminish the usable life of carpet. Removing dirt is one thing, but getting out a stain that’s set can be a real challenge. Stains can also create quite an eyesore, which will often compel managers to replace the carpet sooner than they would otherwise.

The key to preventing such stains is spot cleaning. The sooner you can treat the stain spot, the better your chances of successfully removing it.

  • For heavier stains like dyes, glue residue, and even ketchup and mustard, you may need to call on a professional.
  • It’s also a good idea to have someone regularly check your carpeting for any stains to spot clean them. You can also have this done as part of a carpet preventative maintenance program (more on that below).

Preventative Cleaning

The best method to keep your carpet looking good and lasting long is having a preventative cleaning program. This is a program where your carpet is professionally cleaned at regular intervals (which may differ for different areas based on the state of the carpet, usage, and traffic).

Like regular vehicle maintenance, the idea of a preventative cleaning program is to invest a little to keep your carpet in good shape so you can avoid big, costly restorative cleanings down the road. Preventative cleanings will also keep your carpets looking cleaner for longer.

How often should you have preventative cleaning done?

  • For heavy traffic areas like entrances and ground floor halls, you want preventative cleanings 12-24 times a year. The more the better, but at least once a month.
  • For medium traffic areas like administrative offices or above ground halls, 4 times a year (quarterly) is the ideal frequency.
  • For lighter traffic areas like boardrooms and conference rooms, twice a year should do the trick.

Protect your investment by contacting SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac to clean and maintain your commercial carpet. 309-827-7500

Commercial Water Damage

6/19/2019 (Permalink)

Commercial properties present unique situations that require unique solutions. While the jist of water damage restoration is the same whether it’s a residential property or a commercial building, the urgency and scope of work can be different when you’re talking about a commercial property. At SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac, we have crews specifically trained to handle commercial water damage cleanup services that you might need. From start to finish, we help you get your business back up and running fast and affordably.

Commercial water mitigation companies need to understand the importance of quickly getting your business operational. They need to have the equipment and team available to respond in force given the scale of most commercial water losses. At SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac, we are fully capable of handling any size commercial water damage in central Illinois that you might have.

Providing water damage repair services in a commercial building can be tricky given the scale of the damage.  It requires properly trained technicians armed with the right equipment. Continued business down time can put a big dent in your bottom line.

If you experience a commercial water loss in central Illinois call us 24/7/365

Garage Fire Hazards

6/19/2019 (Permalink)

A fire in your garage isn’t something most property owners need to consider. Be that as it may, actually a great many carport fires happen each year in the USA. What’s more, if your carport is joined to your home, this can be particularly tricky.

Flames aren’t constantly unsurprising. Be that as it may, you can find a way to diminish the danger of a fire breaking out in your garage.

Electrical Problems

Electrical fires are very common. Electrical malfunctions are the number one cause for house fires in the US, and they often start in the garage. These fires can start from blown circuits, overloaded electrical outlets, faulty wiring, exposed wiring, and other ways. Keep track of all of your electric wiring—don’t leave electronics plugged in, don’t use extension chords long term, have your wiring checked regularly. Exposed wires can be chewed through by mice and other pests and be left exposed—making them a fire hazard. If you live in an older home, we recommend that you have your wiring checked to ensure that you are not in danger of an electrical fire.

Clutter

When there is clutter in your garage, a fire still spread quicker. But the truth is—the garage is often the place where we collect our clutter. It is so easy to throw your clutter in the garage where it is out of sight and out of mind. This clutter that piles up in the garage not only makes it hard to navigate through your garage, but it can also mean a bigger fire. If a fire starts in your garage, it can spread much easier with clutter. As the clutter catches fire, it spreads fast.

Flammable Liquids

The garage tends to be full of flammable liquids that are potential fire hazards. These liquids may include oil, cleaning solutions, and gasoline. The storing of these liquids is not necessarily dangerous, but they become dangerous if they come in contain with a spark. It may be best to store these liquids in a shed separate from your home, if possible.

Propane Tanks

Propane is often stored in the garage as well. These tanks shouldn’t be a problem as long as they are sealed properly. If the tank is leaking, any small spark could ignite an instant fire that can quickly get out of hand. Aside from starting a fire, if a fire has started, a propane tank will certainly fuel it.

To prevent potential danger, it is probably best to store propane somewhere away from your house—like a shed or to avoid having extra propane. You can just buy it when you plan on using it. Storing it can be dangerous for your house.

Prevention

Garage fires tend to get out of hand quickly. To avoid a potentially disastrous fire, there are a few things that can be done to fireproof your garage or at least help a fire from getting out of hand. Keep a fire extinguisher in or near your garage. Install a fire alarm in your garage. Get a shed on your property where you can keep propane tanks and other flammable materials. Keeping your garage clean, organized, and free of frayed and exposed wires will help you avoid fire and keep any potential fires from getting out of hand. Take some simple measures to avoid having a disaster in your garage and your house.

If you experience fire damage, call the fire restoration professionals at SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac309-827-7500

Safety tips to keep your commercial property safe

6/18/2019 (Permalink)

  1. Enforce no smoking policies in all areas inside your building. Regardless of what the commercial property is used for, smoking should not be allowed inside the building at any time. Post no smoking signs in all common areas and make the no smoking policy very clear when a new employee or tenant enters the building. You can have designated areas for smokers outdoors, a safe distance away from the building. These areas should be fitted with fireproof containers where people can safely dispose of ashes and cigarettes.
  2. Install automatic sprinklers and fire extinguishers on all floors. During the building of your commercial property or a remodel, an experienced contractor should install an automatic sprinkler system that is ready to activate at the first sign of fire or smoke. Fire extinguishers should be placed on all floors of the property and within the guidelines of your state. Training for employees is necessary – they must understand how to use the extinguishers in order for the tools to be effective.
  3. Install smoke detectors and fire alarms. Just like a sprinkler system, fire alarms and detectors are an automatic tool that will go off at the first sign of smoke or flames. These alarms will alert those in the building to the fire immediately, giving them the opportunity to pull an alarm to send a signal to the fire department.
  4. Check all equipment regularly. Alarms and extinguishers only work to alert the proper people if they are functioning properly. Run tests every six months to ensure they are working as intended. If they are not, hire a professional to repair them.
  5. Educate employees and tenants on fire safety. Many people have never experienced a fire and have never gone through fire safety training. It is important to walk them through where they can find fire extinguishers, fire alarms, and escape plans. This will help minimize panic and confusion in the event of an emergency.

Even with the highest level of planning and prevention, a fire can still break out in your commercial property. Once everyone is safe and sound, it’s time to begin rebuilding and restoring your building by calling SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac.

SERVPRO of Bloomington / Pontiac 309-827-7500

Important Contacts After A Fire

6/18/2019 (Permalink)

Insurance Company

Contact your insurance company and alert them of the situation at hand.  They will be able to shed a little light on this dark situation by informing you of the next steps you need to take. With their guidance, you will be able to navigate the first initial steps of your fire damage claims. In addition, they will be able to inform you of the best practices you should take such as making a list and taking pictures of damaged items for documentation. 

Utility and Lending Companies 

Paying your bills and living expenses in addition to paying to having your home and belonging restored can be financially exhausting. Utility and lending companies realize this and they know the hardship a family can face in the event of disaster such as a house fire. Contact them, explain your situation, and see if they offer any hardship programs that would lower your payments or stop them completely until you get back on your feet.

Physician 

Do you or a family member rely on daily medication to stay healthy? Depending on the extent of the fire damage or the origin of it, retrieving medication may not be possible. Contact your family physician and request to have your medication filled at your nearest pharmacy. 

Child’s School

If you have a child in school you may want to contact the school and alert them of the situation at hand. If the fire damage deems your home unlivable you may need to stay with a family member and their home can be too far from the school. Teachers and principles are understanding of the difficulties a child and family faces in the event of a disaster and may allow them to do class work at home.

Replace Important Documents 

In the event of a life threatening fire, you’re probably not going to think about grabbing the safe in your house that contain important documents. Most important documents can be replaced. Here are just a few of the documents that you need to get replaced right away.

  • Passport 
  • Driver’s license
  • Birth, marriage, and death certificates
  • Damaged money (you can exchange it for undamaged cash with the treasury department) 
  • Social security card
  • Bank documents
  • School records
  • Tax records
  • Vehicle registration   

Start Fire Damage Restoration Right Away 

When your home has gone through a fire, time is of the essence to save, recover and restore your belongings from fire damage.

Call SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac to help you turn your house into a home again.

Recovering After Storm Damage

6/18/2019 (Permalink)

A severe storm can change everything in the blink of an eye. It doesn’t always have to be a tornado to cause destruction in your home or office, and poor restoration can leave you with an unhealthy home for your family. If you know what to expect and learn all you can before a storm hits, you’ll be more prepared to restore things to normal as quickly as possible.

Stay Safe

Before inspecting the damage to your home keep safety in mind:

  • Watch out for hazards such as broken glass and exposed nails.
  • Always assume that downed power lines are energized and dangerous. Stay at least 10 feet away and alert the police and utility company.
  • When inspecting your home at night, use a flashlight instead of a candle (or anything with an open flame). This will alleviate the risk of a fire or explosion from a damaged gas line.

If you do smell gas—or suspect a leak—shut off the main gas line, open the windows, and immediately go outside. Notify the gas company and the proper authorities of the situation and don’t return until they’ve deemed your home to be safe.

Review and Assess the Damage

Windows and doors are vulnerable to wind damage and flying debris. Inspect your windows for cracks, holes, broken panes and damaged frames. Watch out for shards of glass, and be sure to board up broken windows until they can be fixed.

Look for damage to siding, paint, bricks and other exterior surfaces of your home. Also check outdoor appliances, like air conditioning units. You’re looking for dings, dents, cracks, splitting, holes, breaks chipping and discoloration.

If there was extended power outages and you have a sump pump, you may have standing water in your basement.

  • Do not step in standing water without first making sure power is turned off to avoid risk of electrocution
  • Re-engage sump pump to discharge water from the area or call a plumber if the pump is damaged.

Avoid Additional Damage

You may need a board-up service to secure your property so don’t wait. SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac can be there day or night for emergency service.

Contact Your Insurance Provider

Your insurance provider will instruct you on the next steps to take in making a claim and provide you with a claim number and a list of local emergency service providers.

Choose the Right Restoration Company

It’s important to hire a professional and trustworthy restoration company to help you recover your home and restore your lives. Poor or incomplete restoration could leave you with an unhealthy home for your family. Any time there is water damage, mold can begin growing immediately as well. It’s critical to address this as soon as possible to avoid additional damage and health risk. At SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac we have seen it all when it comes to Storm Damage. Whatever your situation is, we will start the process of restoring your home or business.

The water damage above you

6/18/2019 (Permalink)

Water Damaged Ceilings

While a burst pipe is an immediate call to action, a stain on the ceiling is a subtle lingering reminder that something is wrong in your house. Instead of avoiding it, here are some facts to get you up to go investigate!

Whether it’s the roof or an upstairs bathroom, whatever is above the ceiling is usually the source of the stain. Pipes might run along attic rafters before dropping right above your ceiling, so tracking the original source might take some detective legwork.

Ceiling Stains And More

Water spots on the ceiling don’t automatically mean the roof is leaking. Often the stain is not from a roof failure but from drips in the attic from condensation on pipes. Many water lines converge up there: upstairs hot water heaters, plumbing, A/C lines. Tiny cracks allow slow leaks up in the attic crawl space which lead to stains on the ceiling. Be vigilant about:

  • Musty odors
  • Discolored growths
  • Stains, streaks, shadows
  • Peeling ceiling or wall surfaces

Even if your ceiling does not look too bad now, it doesn’t take much water cause big problems. A red flag that your ceiling is at risk of failure are depressions around the fasteners; you will see tiny dimples forming on the ceiling because the drywall encompassing the nails or screws droops, leaving an inverted crater.

Potential Problems

The most obvious consequence of a leak up in the roof is a compromised structure due to damaged rafters, ceiling joists, wall framing or exterior trim. Chronic wet wood leads to deterioration and rot.   

High utility bills could be another side effect of a leak; water intrusion destroys the insulation in the attic area. Cellulose or fiberglass insulation becomes saturated and the insulating properties are lost. If a roof leak repair is put off for a long time, your home will lose hot and cool air and your will pay higher utility bills.

If you paint or cover up the damage, you may create a bigger problem. If the water continues to seep or leak, you may need to tear out the portion of the freshly patched ceiling to address the real source. If mold spores are not killed, then mold will come back. Again, an experienced professional will be able to make a much less visible repair than an inexperienced homeowner.

For any water damage and mold issues, contact SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac.

Why Use SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac

6/18/2019 (Permalink)

We’ll make your home or office safe

 SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac knows where to look to spot potential health hazards, such as black mold, and not only get rid of current problems, but help to prevent future issues. Although cosmetic work, such as re-painting and re-plastering will make your building look fresh and new, there could still be underlying smoke and mold problems that could cause or aggravate health issues for years to come.

We’ll work quickly   

 We can attack your clean-up job with a full crew immediately, while you’ll have to work the clean-up around your already busy schedule. Cleaning up the damage quickly will help to prevent the damage from spreading and mold and mildew from forming.

We’ll help with your insurance claim. 

SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac has years of experience dealing with insurance companies after a fire or flood. We can help you fill out and submit the necessary paperwork to get your money quickly. Plus, the services of fire and water damage restoration companies are covered under most homeowners’ insurance policies.

We’ll help you decide what’s salvageable. 

 We will be invaluable in helping you determine what items you should keep and what is damaged beyond redemption. In the aftermath of a fire or flood, it can be difficult for you to make such decisions without being emotional.

Contact Us 24 / 7 / 365

Commercial Fire Damage

6/18/2019 (Permalink)

When a fire breaks out in your facility, all operations come to a halt. Not only does the fire cause structural and smoke damage to your building, but water damage from the sprinkler system or firefighters’ hoses can also occur.

It is recommended that restoration work be done during the first 24 to 48 hours after fire damage occurs. This allows for the quick, efficient stabilization of your facility and minimizes the downtime of your business.

Call SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac 24/7 emergency response team to restore your building. We have the capacity to handle disasters at any size of facility, regardless of the type of fire.

Our fire restoration services include:

  • Emergency Board-Up
  • Demolition
  • Soot Removal
  • Deodorization

We also remove and secure damaged contents during the cleaning and restoration process. Our certified training and cleaning methods help make cleanup more effective and cost-efficient.

SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac has been proudly serving central Illinois since 1975. We are locally owned and for over 40 years we have been a reliable local leader in the restoration and cleaning industry.  Our highly trained staff understands the stress and worry that comes with fire, water and mold damage and the disruption it causes your life and home or business.

CALL US TODAY 309-827-7500

Tornado Season

6/18/2019 (Permalink)

Knowing what to do when you see a tornado, or when you hear a tornado warning, can help protect you and your family. During a tornado, people face hazards from extremely high winds and risk of being struck by flying and falling objects. After a tornado, the wreckage left behind poses additional injury risks. The National Weather Service (NWS), Homeland Security and Emergency Management (HSEM), and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provide excellent resources on staying safe during and after a tornado, below are some of the highlights.

Preparing for a Tornado

  • Stay informed. Check the forecast regularly to see if you're at risk from tornadoes.
  • Sign up for notifications. Learn how your community sends tornado warnings. Some communities have outdoor sirens and others send media alerts.
  • Create a plan. Have a family plan that includes an emergency meeting space, such as a basement or storm cellar with no windows.
  • Practice your plan. Practice your plan so that your family is prepared when a tornado strikes.

Stay Safe During a Tornado

  • Stay informed. Continue to listen to local news or a Weather Radio to stay updated.
  • If you are at home: Go to your basement, safe room, or room away from windows. Bring your pets with you.
  • If you are at work or school: Follow the tornado drill and go to your tornado shelter quickly and calmly. Stay away from windows.
  • If you are in a vehicle: Being in a vehicle during a tornado is not safe. Drive to the closest shelter if possible. If it is not possible, get down in your car and cover your head or seek shelter in a low lying area, such as a ditch or ravine.
  • If you are outside: Being outside during a tornado is not safe. Seek shelter immediately. If it is not possible, get down in a low lying area, such as a ditch or ravine and cover your head.

After a Tornado

  • Stay informed. Continue to listen to local news or a Weather Radio to stay updated.
  • Contact family and loved ones. Save your phone calls for emergencies. Phone systems may be down after a disaster. Use text messaging or social media to communicate with family and loved ones.
  • Assess the damage. Stay clear of fallen power lines or broken utility lines. Do not enter damaged buildings until you are told they are safe.
  • Check for injuries. Do not attempt to move seriously injured people unless they are in immediate danger of further injury. Get medical assistance immediately.
  • Be careful during clean-up. Wear thick-soled shoes, long pants, and work gloves.

SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac Storm Damage Cleanup and Restoration

Choosing The Right Water Restoration Company

6/18/2019 (Permalink)

Choosing the Right Water Damage Restoration Contractor

Ask for Certification

The first thing to ask your potential contractor is this question: “Are you certified in doing the water damage restoration of my home?” First of all, you do not want someone to do major changes around your home if they are legally not allowed to. 

24/7 Availability

Water damage can happen anytime. It can ruin your home in as fast as you can finish reciting the alphabet. When a water damage restoration company does not offer 24/7 services, they cannot be considered an emergency service company. A great water damage restoration service company will be available when they are needed. This should be true regardless if it is in the middle of the night or when the sun is up.

When it comes to water damage, we all know that time is of the essence. This is due to the fact that if the issue is quickly dealt with, the easier it is for the property to get back to its original state. The professionals should also arrive on time to ensure that fixing the issue will be dealt with promptly. When it comes to water damage, an immediate reaction can result in quicker action. As soon as you see a sign of water damage in the area, it is important to select the right water damage restoration quickly. This can help save your life, your home, and the health of the people in the property.

Uses Modern Equipment

A good water damage restoration company will invest in the latest equipment that can help eliminate water damage. The edge of having modern equipment is that it can speed up the restoration process. When it comes to water damage, time is of the essence and great water damage restoration companies put value into this fact.

Performs Initial Inspection of the Property

Before providing a final quotation, the water damage restoration company would send a representative to inspect the property. This will allow them to assess the situation before giving the client a final quote. This would be an accurate assessment, but these are not the final numbers for the water damage restoration service. After the final inspection, the water damage restoration representative can safely say what is needed to enhance the restoration process.

Years of Experience in the Water Damage Restoration Business

Years of experience in the business will provide an edge that is not present over newer companies. When a company has experience, they are pretty much equipped to handle almost anything since they have undergone these experiences before. There is no school that can teach the things that you learn from experience.

SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac meets and exceeds all criteria.We have been serving central Illinois for over 30 yrs and are a certified industry leader in water removal and cleanup. We can provide properties with the fast and efficient mitigation work that they need to dry up their damaged property quickly 24/7. Our highly trained staff will dry your property using state-of-the-art water removal equipment and advanced drying techniques, documenting the drying process to make sure your property is dry and the job is done right.

Water Damage? Call Us Today!

Mold in Winter

1/11/2019 (Permalink)

Excessive indoor moisture can be caused by a number of issues; water damage, plumbing leaks, leaky roofs, high indoor humidity, and condensation are potential concerns.

Condensation on and around windows, in particular, is normal and may seem harmless, but it is one of the biggest moisture culprits when it’s cold outside but warm inside—as is typically the case during winter.

Window condensation occurs when moisture in the warm air inside your home liquefies upon contact with glass or other surfaces that are drastically cooler due to freezing outdoor temperatures. High humidity contributes to this process because there is excess moisture in the air.

While minor condensation doesn’t usually lead to problems, it is important to dry window surfaces regularly to keep condensation from accumulating and being absorbed by the wood and drywall around the windows. Mold feeds on such organic materials and can develop in as little as 24 hours. 

How to Get Rid of Mold

There is no reason to treat winter mold any differently from mold that appears at any other point in the year. 

If you discover evidence of mold in your home call:

SERVPRO of Bloomington / Gibson City / S. McLean County  309-827-7500

Frozen pipe bursts in your home?

1/10/2019 (Permalink)

1. Shut off your water and, if necessary, electricity

Go to the home’s main water valve and shut it off immediately. (And don’t wait for a burst pipe to find out where the main water valve is located.) Electricity should also be cut off to the section of the home where the water damage has occurred, Thompson said. If you live in an apartment complex and don’t have control over the building’s water supply, he added, be sure to contact your building manager or landlord.

2. Call a plumber.

Not all plumbing companies have 24-hour service, so it’s a good idea to research and choose one in advance so you’re not scrambling after water floods your house. Plumbing costs vary depending on where the pipes are located and how bad the damage is, Thompson said. You may also need to contact a water damage professional, he said, particularly if carpeting, flooring, walls or ceilings are severely damaged.

3. Call SERVPRO of Bloomington for the clean up and restoration.

309-827-7500

 Prevention tips:

In very cold weather, let water drip from your faucet. This can help prevent freezing.

If you suspect a frozen pipe, thaw it yourself using a hair dryer, heating pad, space heater or warm washcloth, or call a professional.

If your faucet is not running or toilet is not refilling, there is a good chance a pipe is frozen.

Winter fire safety tips

1/10/2019 (Permalink)

Space heaters

When the weather turns cold, portable space heaters become a popular way to supplement heat in the home.

If you plan to purchase a space heater this winter, choose one that has been tested and certified by an independent laboratory and that will automatically shut off if the heater tips over.

Carbon Monoxide

With the increased use of gas fueled appliances in the cold winter months there is an increased risk of carbon monoxide poisoning.

To insure your home is safe from carbon monoxide, install CO detectors in your home, or, if you already have CO detectors in your home, replace any that are older than 10 years. In addition, you should not run or warm a car in your garage.

Other safety tips

Additional suggestions to prevent fires this winter.

  • Avoid overloading electrical outlets in your home.
  • Install photo electric smoke detectors in every bedroom and on every floor of your home.
  • Have your furnace checked and serviced to ensure it works properly.
  • Know two ways out of your home and establish a family or roommate meeting place in case of emergency, or read your residence hall's emergency plan.
  • Inspect and dispose of non-working electrical holiday decorations.
  • If you live on the second or third floor, consider purchasing an escape ladder.
 

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call Us Today –  309-827-7500

Avoid Kitchen Fires

7/30/2018 (Permalink)

There are few things so warm and comforting as inviting people to your home in central Illinois, for a meal you have prepared. What is meant to be relaxing can turn into an emergency if a fire breaks out in your kitchen, though. Fortunately, kitchen fires are easily avoided if you take a few key safety precautions. Here are three tips on how to avoid kitchen fires.


1. Give It Your Attention.


Do not leave cooking food unattended. If a burner is on, you should be in the kitchen. It only takes a moment for something to boil over and catch fire or for small fingers to find their way to the burner in your absence. It may seem like a hassle to turn the stove off just to retrieve something from another room, but it's well worth the trouble if it keeps your home from suffering fire damage from a kitchen fire. Protect your home and your loved ones from danger by paying attention when you're cooking.


2. Keep Your Stove Clean.


A dirty stove is a recipe for a disaster. Not only does built-up grease have the tendency to draw insects, it can also cause a grease fire. Cleaning all cooking surfaces regularly can help you avoid fire caused by oil residue.


3. Keep Flammable Objects Away From Heat Sources.


If something can catch fire, it should not be near the burner on the stove. Pay attention to the tips on food packaging that warn you to keep it away from heat. Wear form-fitting clothing while cooking, especially on your arms so that sleeves don't dangle into danger. Potholders, recipe cards and kitchen towels have their place in the kitchen. That place is just not on the stove.

For More info, call us 309-827-7500

Avoid Water Damage In Your Central Illinois Home

7/30/2018 (Permalink)

We all know that prevention is the best medicine, but floods can happen at any moment from any number of causes. By completing regularly scheduled home maintenance and keeping an eye out for common warning signs, you can minimize the chances of a flood. However, nothing can give you a 100% guarantee of never having a flood. In that case, preparation is the best way to minimize water damage.

First, it’s a good idea to know your flood risk. Are you in a potential flood zone? Is your yard sloped away from your foundation? Knowledge is power so the more you know about how your home might flood, the more steps you can take to prevent it or minimize damage from it.

Using waterproof building materials is a great way to reduce damage from flooding and there are waterproof sealants and paints that can be applied to existing structures. In particular, there are many protective coatings for block or poured concrete walls which are common in basements.

Keep your valuables and irreplaceable items such as photo albums, yearbooks, and important documents on high shelves. Do the same with chemicals and paints. If they leak into flood waters, they could cause additional damage. Any items put away for storage should be in air and water-tight plastic containers. Never leave boxes or items on the floor; instead, invest in raised shelving units.

It may also be a good idea to raise appliances and electronics off the ground. Get wires and power strips out from behind your tv stand and organize them in a way that keeps them out of the flood danger zone. Put washing machines and dryers on cinder blocks or sections of lumber to reduce the chances that rising water levels will affect them.

If a flood does strike, turn off electricity, gas, and water lines and place buckets under active leaks. If the water is pooling slowly, soak up as much of it as possible to reduce the potential damage. Calling SERVPRO of Bloomington / Gibson City / S. McLean County  at the first sign of a flood is the best way to reduce water damage. Our highly trained technicians will solve your immediate problems and ensure you don’t experience lasting effects or further damage.

Flooding can happen to anyone. Take steps now to protect your home and keepsakes from water damage in the event of a possible flood.

SERVPRO of Bloomington / Gibson City / S. McLean County  309-827-7500

Smoke Alarms

7/30/2018 (Permalink)

The National Fire Prevention Association (NFPA) reports nearly two-thirds of these fire-related deaths occurred in homes with no working smoke alarm or no smoke alarms present at all. Smoke alarms play a vital role in saving lives, and when they are properly installed, can reduce the risk of fire injury in half.

The NFPA recommends smoke alarms be installed in every bedroom, outside all sleeping quarters and on every level of the house.

Business owners should consult the local Fire Marshall to ensure specific building fire codes and smoke detector requirements are met.

Once smoke alarms are in place, it is important to maintain and regularly test the alarms to ensure they are in the proper working order. Review the tips provided here regarding smoke detector installation and maintenance.

Smoke alarms work best when paired with a fire escape plan. A preparedness plan allows your family, employees, or clients to escape quickly and safely in an emergency situation. For tips or information on emergency preparedness, contact SERVPRO of Bloomington / Gibson City / S. McLean County  309-827-7500

Smoke Alarm Tips:

    • Install smoke alarms inside every bedroom, outside each sleeping area and on every level of the home, including the basement.
    • Smoke alarms should be installed away from the kitchen to prevent false alarms. Generally, they should be at least 10 feet from a cooking appliance.
    • Test smoke detectors at least once a month using the test button
    • Replace batteries in all smoke alarms at least once a year. If an alarm “chirps,” warning the battery is low, replace the battery right away
  • Replace all smoke alarms when they are 10 years old

Flood Event Tips

7/3/2018 (Permalink)

Spring showers can often lead to flooding conditions in central Illinois. These tips will help reduce the impact spring floods that my happen on your property. 

Watch for Pooling Water 

Look for places around your property where water pools, and channel it away from buildings. Make sure gutters and downspouts are clear of debris and they are directing water as intended.

Maintain Sump Pump 

If you have a sump pump, check to be sure it is operational before water starts rising. Consider a back-up generator to ensure your pump works when you need it most. Contact your insurance agent to add coverage in case your sump pump fails. 

Raise Storage Goods 

Use shelving and/or pallets to keep storage items off the floor to reduce the impact of small floods. In many situations, raising boxes just a few inches will be enough to keep storage goods above the water line. 

Cut Power if Necessary 

As rising water approaches the level of electrical outlets, you risk having a live current flow through all the water. Cut the power if you can safely do so without standing in water. Otherwise, evacuate and contact an electrician to cut the power before you go back in for recovery.

Keep Storm Drains Clear

If you see water pooling around a storm drain, the drain may be clogged with debris. Clearing the debris will help keep the water flowing away from your neighborhood.

Be Aware on the Road 

Be careful when driving during spring storms, especially when you hear flash flood warnings. Never drive into fully submerged roadway. The water surface will be at the same level as the pavement you can see. This view can deceive you into thinking the water is shallow because you cannot see how the road dips under the surface. 

Act Fast 

When a flood happens, you need to act fast to dry out any wet items, particularly structural materials like walls and flooring. 

At SERVPRO of Bloomington / Gibson City / S. McLean County we Answer the Phone Ready to Help
Call Today - 309-827-7500

In Case Of A Grease Fire..

7/3/2018 (Permalink)

Grease Fire Do's and Dont's

There are many different ways a fire can break out, one of the most dangerous being a grease fire. If you lack experience putting out a grease fire, know that you do not treat it the same as you would a "standard" fire. There are certain things that you must do and things you absolutely must NOT do. Please consider the following:

Do

  • Turn off the stove or heat source
  • Smother the fire with the pot lid. Without oxygen, the fire cannot survive.
  • Use baking soda to douse the flames. Flour and other items will not work
  • Use a Class B dry chemical fire extinguisher
  • call 911

Don't

  • Try to put out the flames using water. It will splash the grease, causing the fire to spread
  • Move the item. This could also cause splashing, spreading and could potentially burn you
  • Try to use anything other than baking soda. It will not help

Need Emergency Service? Call Us 24/7 – 309-827-7500

Trauma Scene

7/3/2018 (Permalink)

Trauma

Due to its uncomfortable nature, Trauma scene cleanup is a topic that is rarely considered until something happens. 

Once the need for trauma scene cleaning is required it is generally accompanied by a high level of emotional distress, which is compounded by the fact that most people have no idea what options they have.  

That's where the Trauma Scene and Bio-recovery experts at SERVPRO of Bloomington / Gibson City / S. McLean County come in. SERVPRO production managers have been independently trained and certified through the American Bio Recovery Association.  This training allows them to provide the highest level of technical expertise and professional service.

SERVPRO of Bloomington / Gibson City / S. McLean County sincerely hopes that no-one ever has to deal with a trauma scene situation.  But, we take pride in knowing that, if the unthinkable happens, we are always here to help. 

Need Emergency Service? Call Us 24/7 – 309-827-7500

HVAC cleaning

7/3/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Bloomington / Gibson City / S. McLean County has been providing HVAC system cleaning services to the homes and business of Central Illinois for over 20 years.

SERVPRO of Bloomington / Gibson City / S. McLean County certified technicians, follow industry standard processes and use the latest in HVAC system cleaning and inspection equipment.  We are confident that, when given the opportunity,  SERVPRO of Bloomington / Gibson City / S. McLean County will perform to the highest standards.

Whether your're in a brand new home or it's been at least 5 years since the system was cleaned, duct cleaning can greatly improve indoor air quality and increase the efficiency of your HVAC system.

Give SERVPRO of Bloomington / Gibson City / S. McLean County a call today to schedule your no cost estimate and start enjoying the benefits of clean ducts!

At SERVPRO of Bloomington / Gibson City / S. McLean County we Answer the Phone Ready to Help
Call Today - 309-827-7500

EMERGENCY READY PROFILE

7/3/2018 (Permalink)

The Best Way to Reduce Business Interruption Following a Disaster is to Plan For it NOW.

As many as 50% of businesses may never recover following a disaster, according to the latest industry research. Of the businesses that survive, the overwhelming majority of them had a preparedness plan in place. Pre-planning can serve as an insurance policy aimed at peace of mind. By developing a SERVPRO® Emergency READY Profile for your business, you minimize business interruption by having an immediate plan of action. Knowing what to do and what to expect in advance is the key to timely mitigation and can help minimize how water and fire damage can affect your business.

The SERVPRO® Emergency READY Profile Advantages:

  • A no cost assessment of your facility. – This means there is no need to allocate funds, giving you a great value at no cost.
  • A concise Profile Document that contains only the critical information needed in the event of an emergency. – It will only take a little time to complete and will not take you away from current projects. But it will save a lot of time if ever needed.
  • A guide to help you get back into your building following a disaster. – This can help minimize the amount of time your business is inactive by having an immediate plan of action.
  • Establishes your local SERVPRO® Franchise Professional as your disaster mitigation and restoration provider. – You have a provider that is recognized as an industry leader and close by.
  • Identification of the line of command for authorizing work to begin. – This saves time so we can begin the work of mitigating the damage which can save you time and money.
  • Provides facility details such as shut-off valve locations, priority areas and priority contact information. – Having a quick reference of what to do, how to do it and who to call provides solutions in advance of an emergency so that during the emergency you are “Ready for whatever happens.”

For more ERP info call  SERVPRO of Bloomington / Gibson City / S. McLean County we Answer the Phone Ready to Help
Call Today - 309-827-7500

Faster to your Central Illinois Water Damage Event

1/8/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Bloomington / Gibson City / S. McLean County provides 24 hour fire and water damage restoration service in Central Illinois

Flooding and water emergencies don’t wait for regular business hours and neither do we. SERVPRO of Bloomington / Gibson City / S. McLean County provides emergency cleaning and restoration services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week—including all holidays.

Faster To Any Size Disaster

Flooding and water damage is very invasive. Water quickly spreads throughout your home and gets absorbed into floors, walls, furniture, and more. SERVPRO of Bloomington / Gibson City / S. McLean County arrives quickly and starts the water extraction process almost immediately. This immediate response helps to minimize the damage and the cleaning and restoration costs.

Need Emergency Service? Call Us 24/7 – 309-827-7500

Water Damage Timeline

Within Minutes

  • Water quickly spreads throughout your property, saturating everything in its path.
  • Water is absorbed into walls, floors, upholstery, and belongings.
  • Furniture finishes may bleed, causing permanent staining on carpets.
  • Photographs, books, and other paper goods start to swell and warp.

Hours 1 - 24:

  • Drywall begins to swell and break down.
  • Metal surfaces begin to tarnish.
  • Furniture begins to swell and crack.
  • Dyes and inks from cloth and paper goods spread and stain.
  • A musty odor appears.

48 Hours to 1 Week:

  • Mold and mildew may grow and spread.
  • Doors, windows, and studs swell and warp.
  • Metal begins to rust and corrode.
  • Furniture warps and shows signs of mold.
  • Paint begins to blister.
  • Wood flooring swells and warps.
  • Serious biohazard contamination is possible.

More Than 1 Week:

  • Restoration time and cost increase dramatically; replacing contaminated materials and structural rebuilding may be extensive.
  • Structural safety, mold growth, and biohazard contaminants pose serious risks to occupants.

About SERVPRO of Bloomington / Gibson City / S. McLean County 

SERVPRO of Bloomington / Gibson City / S. McLean County specializes in the cleanup and restoration of residential and commercial property after a fire, smoke or 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.

Fire Safety Tips

1/8/2018 (Permalink)

When your Central Illinois home or suffers fire damage, it can be especially devastating.

Fire Safety Tips That Could Help Save Your Life

Fire Prevention Tip #1
One of the simplest and most effective fire safety precautions you can do to help keep your family safe is to install smoke detectors and smoke alarms throughout your home. It is important to check smoke alarms regularly, and change their batteries at least once a year. Investigation into home fires often reveals that smoke alarms could have saved lives but didn’t because the alarms were either disconnected or the batteries were dead or removed.

Fire Prevention Tip #2
At a minimum, you should have one smoke alarm for each level in your home. A smoke alarm should be placed within 10 feet of sleeping areas, since most fire deaths occur at night while people are sleeping. In order to be most effective, the alarm should be mounted on the ceiling or towards the top of a wall about a foot below the ceiling. It should never be placed where a wall and ceiling meet or in the corner of a room. Alarms should also not be placed near heating ducts or cold air returns. The air flow around these areas could prevent alarms from detecting smoke. You can also interconnect the smoke alarms throughout the house so when one goes off, all of the smoke detectors will sound.

Fire Prevention Tip #3
In the event of a fire, your primary thoughts should be of the safety of you and your family. If there is any doubt about staying at home or leaving, leave immediately. It is important to have an evacuation plan in place and to practice it. This will ensure that you and your family know and understand how to get out of the house. Here’s a checklist of fire safety considerations:

  • Have an escape plan for each room and make the bedrooms top priority. Rehearse the plan regularly as a rehearsed escape plan will help eliminate panic in an emergency situation. Children who have not rehearsed a fire drill at home may hide under a bed or in a closet, greatly reducing their chance for survival.
  • Once the alarm sounds, time is of the essence. Don’t stop to gather valuables or toys — just get out. .
  • Know how to use 911 and teach your children as well. Post your house address near the phone.
  • Designate a window as a secondary exit. Make sure it is completely unobstructed and is easily opened by children and elderly. For second and third story windows, keep a Fire Escape Ladder stored close by. Practice using them out of a first floor window so everyone is familiar with them.
  • Feel closed doors for warmth before opening them and look for smoke seeping in around the door’s edges and from underneath. Open any closed door slowly and be prepared to shut it immediately if heat or smoke rush in.
  • Have a designated outside meeting place, and make everyone aware of where it is. Make sure the meeting place is located well away from the house and make it a rule to not re-enter the house.
  • As soon as two people have reached the meeting place, have one person leave to call 911. The second person should stay to make sure the other family members all make it out.
  • If someone is missing don’t go back inside. Instead, notify the fire department as soon as they arrive.

Fire Prevention Tip #4
Fires caused by candles, cooking, falling asleep while smoking, and other such accidents can occur at any time. It is always a good idea to consider using smokeless electric or battery-operated candles, like rechargeable Tea Light candles. These candles are much safer than traditional candles. With flameless candles, you don’t have to worry about a child or pet knocking them over and starting a fire.

At SERVPRO of Bloomington / Gibson City / S. McLean County we Answer the Phone Ready to Help
Call Today - 309-827-7500

Fire Prevention Tip #5
A little fire safety maintenance can go a long way towards reducing your risk for a fire at home. Here are some fire prevention tips you can do to help lower your risk of a fire breaking out:

  • Practice home fire drills regularly and make them realistic. Have different escape routes blocked and practice using alternate exits.
  • Lint build-up in your dryer’s vent can cause a fire. Get rid of it before it becomes a problem using a Dryer Maintenance Kit that includes a vent brush, lint trap brush, and vacuum attachment.
  • Make it a habit to unplug all countertop appliances when they aren’t being used.
  • Install a carbon monoxide detector. They are especially useful in the newer energy-efficient homes with tight weather seals.
  • Store cigarette lighters and matches where children can’t get them.
  • Don’t use an outdoor grill or charcoal grill indoors or on a porch or balcony.
  • Test your smoke alarm regularly to make sure it’s in working condition.
  • Change battery-operated smoke detector batteries once each year.

Fire Prevention Tip #6
Help emergency vehicles find your home faster with a Solar LED address light that easily stakes into the ground and illuminates your house numbers.

If a fire does breakout, don’t panic. For example, something cooking on the stove catches fire and you’re not sure what to do. If you throw water on the pan, grease could splatter and the fire might spread. Instead, grab a Fire Blanket and use it to smother the flames quickly. Made of nonflammable fiberglass, the Fire Blanket cuts off the oxygen supply to the fire, putting it out. You can also grab a convenient Fire Extinguisher.

Smoke inhalation, not burns, is by far the largest killer in fires, so the more time you have to escape, the better. This heat-resistant, transparent copolymer Smoke Escape™ Hood features a patented 3-layer ionized smoke filter that gives you up to 15 precious “escape” minutes.

Following these fire prevention tips and fire safety ideas will not only lessen your risk for damage, injury, and loss, but may also save your life, and the lives of your family. The minimal amount of time it takes to read and practice these fire prevention tips could end up being one of the best investments you ever make!

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 – 309-827-7500

Restoring Your Central Illinois Commercial Property After A Water Damage Event

8/17/2017 (Permalink)

Commercial Water Damage Events Present Unique Challenges

Flooding and water damage events at Central Illinois 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 Bloomington / Gibson City / S. McLean County

SERVPRO of Bloomington / Gibson City / S. McLean County 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.

Does Your Central Illinois Home Have A Mold Problem?

8/17/2017 (Permalink)

In Central Illinois, mold can spread through a home in as little as 48 hours.

Microscopic mold spores naturally occur almost everywhere, both outdoors and indoors. This makes it impossible to remove all mold from a home or business. Therefore, mold remediation reduces the mold spore count back to its natural or baseline level. Some restoration businesses advertise “mold removal” and even guarantee to remove all mold, which is a fallacy. Consider the following mold facts:

  • Mold is present almost everywhere, indoors and outdoors.
  • Mold spores are microscopic and float along in the air and may enter your home through windows, doors, or AC/heating systems or even hitch a ride indoors on your clothing or a pet.
  • Mold spores thrive on moisture. Mold spores can quickly grow into colonies when exposed to water. These colonies may produce allergens and irritants.
  • Before mold remediation can begin, any sources of water or moisture must be addressed. Otherwise, the mold may return.
  • Mold often produces a strong, musty odor and can lead you to possible mold problem areas.
  • Even higher-than-normal indoor humidity can support mold growth. Keep indoor humidity below 45 percent.

If your home or business has a mold problem, we can inspect and assess your property and use our specialized training, equipment, and expertise to remediate your mold infestation.

If You See Signs of Mold, Call SERVPRO of Bloomington / Gibson City / S. McLean County Today 309-827-7500

We are an IICRC Certified Firm

7/7/2017 (Permalink)

Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration and we are an IICRC Certified Firm.

SERVPRO of Bloomington / Gibson City / S. McLean County is an IICRC firm. The Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) creates the standards for the restoration industry and provides training and certification to restoration companies. IICRC Certified Firms have the right to display the IICRC Certified Logo.

IICRC Certified Firms must

• Present accurate information to consumers and conduct business with honesty and integrity.

• Require a technician on all jobs who has been formally trained and passed all required tests.

• Require a continuing education program to keep technicians up-to-date on the latest changes in the industry.

• Maintain liability insurance to protect all parties in the event of an accident.

• Maintain a written complaint policy and agree to Better Business Bureau or similar arbitration to resolve disputes, and accept the conclusions and recommendations of arbitration.

The IICRC Develops The Standards For The Restoration Industry

The IICRC has been the driving force in establishing the main industry standards and reference guides for professional carpet cleaning, water damage restoration and mold remediation. These IICRC standards take years to develop and require the coordination of experts in the field: manufacturers, industry organizations, insurance professionals, training schools, contractors, and public health professionals.

Every five years, the standards are reviewed and updated. The water damage restoration field changes rapidly with advancements in technology and science, and therefore the standards must evolve to keep pace.

About SERVPRO of Bloomington / Gibson City / S. McLean County 

SERVPRO of Bloomington / Gibson City / S. McLean County specializes in the cleanup and restoration of residential and commercial property after a fire, smoke or water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration and we are an IICRC Certified Firm. We believe in continuous training: 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.

Meet Our Crew

Central Illinois Smoke and Soot Cleanup

7/7/2017 (Permalink)

Smoke and Soot Damage Can Cause a Pervasive Odor in Your 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 Bloomington / Gibson City / S. McLean County 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 – 309-827-7500

When Storms or Floods hit Central Illinois, SERVPRO is ready!

6/13/2017 (Permalink)

Our highly trained crews are ready to respond 24/7 to storm or flood damage.

SERVPRO of Bloomington / Gibson City / S. McLean County specializes in storm and flood damage restoration.  Our crews are highly trained and we use specialized equipment to restore your property to its pre-storm condition.

Faster Response

Since we are locally owned and operated, we are able to respond quicker with the right resources, which is extremely important. A fast response lessens the damage, limits further damage, and reduces the restoration cost.

Resources to Handle Floods and Storms

When storms hit Central Illinois, we can scale our resources to handle a large storm or flooding disaster. We can access equipment and personnel from a network of 1,650 Franchises across the country and elite Disaster Recovery Teams that are strategically located throughout the United States.

Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today 309-827-7500

SERVPRO of Bloomington / Gibson City / S. McLean County home page

Water Damage

6/1/2017 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Bloomington / Gibson City / S. McLean County is available 24 hours a day for water emergencies, large or small. When you are dealing with water damage, immediate action is crucial. A delay of just a few hours can greatly increase the severity of the water damage.

We Answer the Phone Ready to Help
Call Today - 309-827-7500

We understand that when you call us, you may be feeling confused, stressed, and vulnerable. You need an expert to guide you through this crisis. SERVPRO of Bloomington / Gibson City / S. McLean County has the specific water damage training and experience to help you through this tough time. We specialize in water damage restoration—in fact, it's the cornerstone of our business.

What to Expect

When you call, we will ask several questions regarding your water damage emergency. These questions will help us determine what equipment and resources to bring, including how many trained SERVPRO Professionals may be needed.

Our SERVPRO Representative will ask several questions:

  • Your name and contact information
  • Your insurance information (if applicable)
  • The street address of the water-damaged home or business
  • When did the flooding or water damage occur?
  • What caused the water damage (if known)?
  • Is there electricity available (on-site)?

About SERVPRO of Bloomington / Gibson City / S. McLean County  

SERVPRO of Bloomington / Gibson City / S. McLean County specializes in the cleanup and restoration of residential and commercial property after a fire, smoke or 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.

Visit our water damage repair & restoration page

Follow These Mold Safety Tips If You Suspect Mold

6/1/2017 (Permalink)

Be careful! Without proper training, you could be spreading mold throughout your home.

If you see visible mold, do not disturb it. You can inadvertently spread the mold infestation throughout your home. When mold is disturbed, the mold can release microscopic mold spores which become airborne and can circulate inside your home.

What to Do:

  • Stay out of affected areas.
  • Turn off the HVAC system and fans.
  • Contact SERVPRO of [[Franchise Name]] for mold remediation services.

What Not to Do:

  • Don’t touch or disturb the mold.
  • Don’t blow air across any surfaces with visible or suspected mold growth.
  • Don’t attempt to dry the area yourself.
  • Don’t spray bleach or other disinfectants on the mold.

About Our Mold Remediation Services

SERVPRO of Bloomington/Gibson City/S. McLean County specializes in mold cleanup and restoration, in fact, it’s a cornerstone of our business.  Our crews are highly trained restoration professionals that use specialized equipment and techniques to properly remediate your mold problem quickly and safely.

If You See Signs of Mold, Call Us Today  309-827-7500

Visit our Mold Remediation and Restoration page here

BBQ Safety: Tips For Grilling

5/30/2017 (Permalink)

When the weather gets warmer, it’s always fun to gather with friends and family for an outdoor cookout. After all, nothing spells spring or summer like the smell of burgers, steaks, hot dogs and chopped veggies fresh off the grill – until something starts burning, that is.

While gas and charcoal grills are an easy way to cook up large amounts of delicious food, they can also pose a fire danger to your property and family. By following a few simple BBQ safety tips, you can prevent injury while keeping your home and surrounding property safe. Learn the most important grill safety tips from the experts at SERVPRO to keep your property out of harm’s way the next time you smoke, sizzle or sauté outside.

Practice Good Grilling Habits

Whatever kind of grill you use, there are a few simple things you can do to reduce your risk of fire or injury. Here are some basic grilling safety tips to follow:

  • Set your grill up a safe distance away from structures and overhangs, including your main building, shed, garage, trees and other potentially flammable objects.
  • Never use your grill inside, in a tent or under an outdoor awning or carport. Doing so can pose a serious fire hazard and potentially cause carbon monoxide poisoning if you’re using a gas grill.
  • Light your gas or charcoal grill using special long-length lighters or long matches to avoid getting burned. Keep all ignition sources out of the reach of children.
  • Never leave an actively burning grill unattended, and let your grill fully cool before you cover or store it.
  • Clean your grill thoroughly and often to reduce flammable buildup inside.

Be Aware of Proper Charcoal Grill Safety

Many people swear by the taste of food cooked on a classic charcoal grill. This popular way of cooking is fun, but it also poses unique fire risks of its own. Keep these important BBQ safety tips in mind if you own or use a charcoal grill:

  • Only add enough charcoal to cover the bottom of the grill. Don’t pile too much inside since it could cause ashes and sparks to become airborne, possibly catching nearby objects or even your home on fire.
  • Store extra charcoal in a secure place away from other potential fire hazards, and preferably in an airtight metal container.
  • Only use starter fluid specifically designed for charcoal. Apply it to cold coals only, and don’t add extra fluid once the grill is lit. Otherwise, the flames could get too high, resulting in possible burns or an uncontained fire.
  • Empty your used ashes only when they have fully cooled. Never store or dispose of them in a garbage can or leave them on a deck. Even when cooled, ashes can still cause a fire. It’s best to dump them on garden soil or contain them in a metal receptacle for proper disposal.

Use your Gas Grill Wisely

Gas grills are convenient and easy to use, and require less refueling than charcoal grills. But gas grills are also susceptible to fire risks, so it’s important to be aware of how to properly operate your gas grill. Remember these safety tips if you own a gas grill:

  • Open the lid before lighting the grill. This allows oxygen to escape and reduces the risk of fire or even explosion.
  • Check your grill’s gas line and tank fittings regularly for leaks. You can do this by brushing soapy water around these areas. If you see bubbles emerge, there could be a leak somewhere. Replace any damaged/leaking parts and make any other needed repairs before using the grill.
  • If you have spare gas cylinders, never store them under a stairway or the eaves of your home. Place them upright and outside, away from any structures to minimize fire risks.
  • Turn off your grill using the controls first, then close off the gas line at the tank. This helps to ensure any excess gas can escape safely.

If you happen to experience a fire during BBQ season, the professionals at SERVPRO are always available to help. We hope you never need to make that call but if you do, we’re available 24/7/365 to assist you. Visit our Fire Damage Repair and Restoration page

Categories

Archived Posts