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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Archived Blog Posts

Spring Storms

5/25/2021 (Permalink)

Spring storms strike no matter where you live.  Wind, rain, hail, tornadoes, and flooding can cause costly damage to your home.

Luckily there are ways to prevent potential costly damage to your home.

  1. Clean out gutters and downspouts

Clogged gutters, drains, and downspouts can lead to roof damage during a storm. Dirt and debris can cause water to be unable to flow away from the roofline, adding weight to your roof and potentially causing a roof collapse.

Before the spring storms strike, check your downspouts and gutters to ensure that winter storms haven’t created any blockages. While you’re up there, make sure that all connections are secure and that no repairs are necessary.

  1. Seal your windows, doors, and roof

Check the seals around your doors and windows. Look for loose screws and cracked caulking, and make repairs if necessary. If you live in an area that's prone to heavy storms, consider investing in impact-resistant windows to protect your home.

When you inspect your doors, check that there are three hinges on each to provide additional support. Then, make sure your threshold is screwed directly into your house, as opposed to only your door frame.

Next, inspect your roof. If you find any missing or damaged shingles, an area of sagging, or other damage, have your roof professionally inspected before a storm hits. Repairs can keep your home from experiencing severe damage due to a leaky roof.

  1. Search for cracks in the foundation

Even small cracks in your foundation or basement can put your home at risk of major damage during a spring storm. If water seeps in through the cracks, your home could be in danger of flooding. Furthermore, high winds can make existing cracks prone to widening, causing significant structural damage throughout the home. If you find or suspect any cracks in your foundation or basement, call a professional to seal them to help you prepare for a flood.

  1. Install a backflow valve in your basement to prevent sewage backup

Heavy rain can cause municipal sewers systems to become overtaxed, creating the possibility for excess water to flow backward through your home's sewer lines. Plumbing fixtures situated at the lowest points in your home may be particularly prone to sewer backup. Consider installing a sewer backflow valve to divert unexpected water away from your sewer lines and back to your city's sewage system.

Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today 847-983-4468

Going Home Again

5/25/2021 (Permalink)

After natural disasters such as hurricanes, tornadoes, and floods, be aware that your house may be contaminated with mold or sewage, which can cause health effects for your family.

When You First Reenter Your Home

  • If you have standing water in your home and can turn off the main power from a dry location, then go ahead and turn off the power, even if it delays cleaning. 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 yourself or use an electric tool or appliance while standing in water.
  • Have an electrician check the house’s electrical system before turning the power on again.
  • If the house has been closed up for several days, enter briefly to open doors and windows to let the house air out for awhile (at least 30 minutes) before you stay for any length of time.
  • If your home has been flooded and has been closed up for several days, presume your home has been contaminated with mold.
  • If your home has been flooded, it also may be contaminated with sewage.

If You See Signs of Mold, Call Us Today –847-983-4468

Difference Between a “Watch” and a “Warning”

5/25/2021 (Permalink)

The National Weather Service (NWS) keeps an eye on forecasts and climate data around the country. When it detects a potentially serious weather pattern, the NWS will notify local meteorologists in the area. Since you may not always be near a radio or television, you can stay up to date on weather changes by following your local news stations on social media, downloading the NWS app.

When you hear news that a storm watch or storm warning has been issued, keep in mind that the term being used describes both the immediacy and level of force of the storm.

What does "storm watch" mean?

A storm watch means that severe weather has not occurred yet, but upcoming weather conditions are expected to produce potentially dangerous weather, such as heavy rain, hail or strong gusts of wind. Because conditions can change quickly, the NWS wants to give you as much time as possible to safeguard your personal property and take shelter.

What does "storm warning" mean?

A storm warning indicates that meteorologists have already observed severe conditions. If you hear that a storm warning has been issued, it means potentially dangerous weather is imminent in or near your location. Depending on the type of weather warning, take appropriate action as quickly and safely as possible.

Types of storm watches and warnings

  • Severe Thunderstorms. A thunderstorm watch, which can be in effect for several hours, means weather conditions exist where severe thunderstorms can easily develop. A thunderstorm warning means current storm conditions can turn worse, including heavy rain and strong winds. Whether a watch or a warning, it's best to stay inside and away from windows.
  • April, May and June are the most active months of the year for tornadoes to occur. A tornado watch means severe weather, such as large hail or winds over 58 mph, has the potential to turn into tornadic activity. A tornado warning indicates that either a strong weather rotation could produce a tornado at any moment or that a funnel cloud has already been spotted. In either situation, you should seek shelter immediately and pay attention to local news updates.
  • Flash Floods. A flash flood watch signals that even if there isn't any standing water in your immediate area, you should be ready for those conditions to change at any moment. Flash flood watches can turn to warnings quickly, meaning that flooding of nearby bodies of water is imminent or already happening. In either case, move to higher ground as safely as possible, and stay out of the flood's path — for instance, don't try to drive your vehicle through large areas of pooling water.
  • Tropical Storms. The NWS tries to issue tropical storm watches as early as possible to allow enough time for emergency prep, including the possibility of evacuation. If you hear a warning, though, a tropical storm is expected within the next 36 hours, and you should take shelter immediately.
  • Whether there is a tropical storm expected to strengthen into a hurricane, or one that's already formed, a watch means a hurricane has the potential to impact your area. You should gather emergency supplies and be prepared to act quickly. Warnings are typically issued up to three days in advance — if one is issued, take direction from local authorities on whether to take shelter or to leave the area immediately.
  • Winter Storm. A winter storm watch is usually issued at least 24 hours in advance of the storm. It lets you know that while hazardous weather conditions are likely, the exact areas and timing may not be known yet. If a watch is upgraded to a winter storm warning, try to avoid traveling, as visibility and road conditions can become unsafe.

No matter the type of watches or warnings that may come your way, it's important to properly prepare for storm conditions in advance.

Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today 847-983-4468

Why SERVPRO

3/18/2021 (Permalink)

Experience and Compassion are Why SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles Earns High Marks from Customers

Suffering a water, fire, mold, or storm disaster can be a low point in the lives of our Morton Grove/East Niles customers. No one can prepare for the upheaval, worry, cost, and feelings of helplessness that follow a significant loss after an accident or emergency puts your property in harm's way. Working with a reliable mitigation and remediation company goes a long way toward reducing the stress-stricken homeowners endure.

Water Damage 

The need for water removal arrives at the most inconvenient times. A phone call takes you away from a filling sink that overflows down the hall to the stairs. The grumbling water heater finally gives up the ghost -- and 50 gallons of sediment-filled liquid fills your utility room while you are at work. Automatic sprinkler systems seem like a time and money saver until they malfunction and run all night and seep mucky water through cracks in your foundation.

When you call SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles for water extraction, do it with the assurance that we have your back. Providing premium water damage management is one of the foundations of our company’s mission, and we strive to exceed your expectations when we take on your project. Expect a speedy response to your call because we know the longer water has to soak into the structural components and contents of your home the more damage that results.

Each water removal job SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles undertakes has a customized workflow developed in response to the individual circumstances at the customer’s residence. We arrive with an Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Reconstruction Certification (IICRC)- crew, certified in multiple specialties to deliver restoration best practices across every task we complete. Powerful, commercial-grade pumps and water extractors are at the ready in our well-stock vehicles. To finish the remediation, the same vehicles hold the air movers, heaters, and dehumidifiers that bring moisture levels in building materials back to normal readings.

Fire Damage 

When an overturned pot or unattended candle causes fire damage in Morton Grove/East Niles that has the potential to race throughout all spaces in your home, your priority is the safety of loved ones and pets. Returning to your house after the firefighters release the property can be a total upending of your expectations of comfort and enjoyment in what was your safe place. Surfaces, furnishings, and personal effects are almost unrecognizable, and you and your family suffer from feelings of despair and enormous loss.

Our SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles family grieves with yours because the first viewing of fire devastation never grows old. Without missing a beat, however, our experienced crew chief begins assessing the situation and mapping out a plan to make sooty, wet chaos “Like it never even happened.” Each crew member jumps to assigned tasks, all the tools, products, and equipment needed with us and ready to battle back.

The tasks common to fire damage mitigation and remediation as performed by our SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles team include the following:

  • Water containment, removal, and disposal following local regulations
  • Burned debris assessment and removal
  • Deep cleaning of charred surfaces with an emphasis on restoring stable surfaces if possible
  • Evaluation of soot characteristics on different surfaces and spaces
  • Ashy soot from hot-burning paper and wood
  • Thick, dark soot that sticks to surfaces from electrical fires and slow smoldering fabrics and padding
  • Protein-based soot from food and grease that adheres like a varnish
  • Matching of the varying soot to appropriate cleaning products, tools, and techniques
  • Loose, ashy soot -- cleared with dry sponges, brushed and HEPA-filtered vacuums
  • Sticky, thickly deposited soot -- cleaning products with wetting agents and surfactants to loosen the bond and agitation to clear the soot away
  • Protein-based soot -- abrasive tools or cleaning products to dislodge and solvents in challenging applications
  • Deodorization after cleaning completes, including the use of special equipment like thermal foggers, hydroxyl generators, and ozone machines


Mold Remediation

Mold remediation in Morton Grove/East Niles reflects the reputable restoration industry’s best practices. Mold spores can never be eliminated, and any company that promises to achieve zero mold spore levels is suspect. Our goal is to remove current mold infestations, use appropriate products to minimize the return of mold colonies and work with our customers to find the sources of moisture responsible for mold growth and arrange for necessary repairs.

SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles crews use a protocol developed by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to locate, contain, and remove mold and materials it infiltrated. The workspace is partitioned off with durable barriers to prevent the spread of moldy material. We create a seal using negative pressure air scrubbing technology, venting the contaminated atmosphere in the moldy space through filters and then to the outside. Remediators wear personal protective equipment (PPE) for safety and to avoid tracking moldy residues through your home.

Mold responds well to mechanical removal -- scrapers and brushes. We vacuum after removal to get all particles using HEPA-filtered machines. Porous material can regain functionality after innovative techniques like soda blasting that deactivates and removes hyphae from structural components. After the visible is cleared EPA-registered antimicrobials treat surfaces. Antimicrobial paint-like sealants also might be appropriate to prepare surfaces for restoration.

Storm Damage

Flooding, roofing and siding fails, and broken windows and doors are all on the menu when Morton Grove/East Niles residents experience storm damage. Heavy rains, winds, and storm surge are the enemy, but our crews are ready to stand with you against the unwanted invasion.

We also provide pre-storm water-related mitigation services when faced with diminished integrity of your home. SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles offers board up and tarping when your roof, windows, siding, and other exterior elements suffer damage. In the aftermath of a severe storm, it is comforting to know that our team, from owners to technicians, are dedicated to customer needs and satisfaction. Caring, compassion, and security are guiding principles we follow at this challenging time in your life.

Feel confident that SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles is on your team as we guide you from catastrophic conditions to “Like it never even happened.” Call for backup at 847-983-4468.

Ice Dams

2/5/2021 (Permalink)

An Ice Dam is a hump of ice that forms at the edge of a roof under certain wintertime conditions. An ice dam can damage both your roof and the inside of your home. It will put gutters and downspouts at risk too.

Ice Dams are a common sight in Northern New England winters, and Home Partners has dealt with quite a few. There are several things you can do to avoid getting an ice dam or to reduce the risk of damage after one has formed, but there’s really only one cure: a combination of better sealing, insulation, and venting in the attic and eaves.

HOW DO ICE DAMS FORM?

An ice dam forms when the roof over the attic gets warm enough to melt the underside of the layer of snow on the roof. The water trickles down between the layer of snow and the shingles until it reaches the eaves of the roof, which stays cold because it extends beyond the side of the house. There, the water freezes, gradually growing into a mound of ice.

The flatter the pitch of the roof, the easier it is for an ice dam to get a grip. Gutters at the eaves can also trap snow and ice. If snow and ice buildup high enough in the gutter, it can provide a foundation for an ice dam.

WHAT DAMAGE DO ICE DAMS CAUSE?

When an ice dam gets big enough, melted water backs up behind it and seeps underneath the shingles. Eventually, it will drip into the insulation and down into the ceilings and exterior walls beneath the eave, ruining sheetrock and paint. If the ice dam breaks free, it can pull shingles and gutters off with it, and it will damage anything it falls on: shrubs, windowsills, cars, pets, and people. If the roof sheathing stays wet, it can form mildew and start to rot.

HOW CAN YOU DEAL WITH AN ICE DAM?

There are two avenues of attack: dealing with an existing ice dam and preventing one in the first place.

DEALING WITH EXISTING ICE DAMS

  1. Remove the ice dam by breaking it free in small chucks. Do NOT use an ax or other sharp tool! You’ll cut through the shingles. Instead, tap lightly with a blunt mallet. This is slow, dangerous work, so hire someone experienced at roofing. Even if you do it safely, the chunks of ice can take pieces of shingle with them.
  2. Clear out gutters and downspouts. Again, this is ladder work and an easy way to damage either plastic or metal gutters and spouts.
  3. Melt troughs through the ice dam with calcium chloride ice melter. Do NOT use rock salt! It will damage paint, metals, and plants beneath the eave and wherever the salty water drains.

A good trough-maker is a tube of cloth (a leg from an old pair of panty hose works well). Fill it with calcium chloride, tie off the top, and lay it vertically across the ice dam. It will slowly melt its way down through the dam, clearing a path for the underlying water to flow free.

PREVENTING ICE DAMS

You can scrape snow from the roof whenever it falls, using a snow rake from below or a broom or plastic shovel from above. BE CAREFUL: The first method can bury you in snow, while the second can send you slipping off the roof.

You can replace your shingle roof with standing seam or other metal roof. Or you can replace the bottom three feet or so of your shingle roof with a wide metal drip edge. Whatever you do, install a water-repellent membrane under any new roofing.

NOTE: If your roof is not very steep, an ice dam can still form on metal roofing and drip edges.

THE CURE

All of these methods treat the symptoms, not the underlying problem, which is the warm roof, caused by poor insulation and venting of the space under the roof. We have found that the only way to cure an ice dam – and prevent one in the first place – is to:

  1. Seal all points where warm air leaks from the living space into the spaces immediately below the roof sheathing.
  2. Insulate the living space well enough to prevent conduction and convection of heat through the ceiling.
  3. Vent the space between the insulation and the roof sheathing, so any heat that does leak through is carried away.

Have Water Damage? Call Us Today 847-983-4468

Office Building Guide to Indoor Air Quality

2/5/2021 (Permalink)

What You Can Do to Improve the Indoor Air in Your Office:

  • Do not block air vents or grilles.
  • Comply with the office and building smoking policy.
  • Water and maintain office plants properly.
  • Dispose of garbage promptly and properly.
  • Store food properly.
  • Avoid bringing products into the building that could release harmful or bothersome odors or contaminants.
  • Notify your building or facility manager immediately if you suspect an indoor air quality problem.

If You Manage an Office:

  • Maintain a good working relationship with building management on indoor environmental issues.
  • Place office furniture and equipment with air circulation, temperature control, and pollutant removal functions of the heating, ventilating and air conditioning (HVAC) system in mind.
  • Coordinate with building management in instances when responsibility for design, operation and maintenance of the ventilation system is shared.
  • Establish an effective smoking policy that protects nonsmokers from involuntary exposure to secondhand smoke.
  • Avoid procedures and products that can cause indoor air quality problems.
  • Integrate indoor air quality concerns into your purchasing decisions.
  • Work with the building manager to ensure use of only necessary and appropriate pest control practices, and nonchemical methods where possible.
  • Work with building management and the contractor before you remodel or renovate to identify ways of keeping building occupant exposure to pollutants to a minimum and to ensure that the air distribution system is not disrupted.
  • Encourage building management to develop a preventive indoor air quality management program following guidance issued by EPA and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH).

About SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles

SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles 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.

Call us at 847-983-4468

Flood Damage

2/5/2021 (Permalink)

After a heavy rain, flood or burst pipe, you may find yourself wondering how to remove water from your basement. This is a tricky one. You need to get the water out quickly, but there are health and structural issues that need serious consideration. Plus, do you have the equipment to handle the job?

With a lot on the line, we recommend contacting a professional water damage restoration service when you've got water in your basement. Experts, like the ones you'll find at SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles, know how to clean up a flooded basement with the right safety measures and equipment to do the job properly. In this post, we'll explain some of the dangers of a DIY cleanup attempt along with tips on what to do with a flooded basement while you wait on the pros to arrive.

Immediate Steps After a Basement Flood

  • Turn off the power. When your basement fills with water, the first thing to do is safely turn off energy sources around the area. This includes electricity and gas. If you can't do this without going through standing water, stay safe by leaving it to a professional.
  • Wear boots and gloves. It is wise to assume that floodwater can be tainted with sewage or other pollutants. You should keep clear of the area, but if you have to go near the basement for something, cover up. Use waterproof boots and gloves to protect your skin from unpleasant or dangerous stuff in the water.
  • Call your insurance company. Homeowners' policies typically don't cover natural floods, so check with your insurance provider to see what your coverage is. If you live in an area where flooding from natural disasters is common, you should consider adding flood insurance to your policy. Remember – it's never good to find out after the fact that you don't have adequate insurance.

Dangers of a Flooded Basement

There are a number of dangers associated with DIY basement water removal. The average homeowner can easily get in over their head in trying to figure out how to remove water from a basement. Experts will know what to do with a flooded basement to mitigate damage as much as possible and help keep you safe. Watch out for these hazards, which your cleanup crew will know how to handle properly:

  • Graywater or blackwater.This is ground water or rain that swells up and seeps into basements. It's full of ground pollutants, biological agents, bacteria and other hazards to your health. Unclean graywater or blackwater can cause serious illness and must be cleaned up carefully.
  • Electric shock.Submerged appliances or outlets in your basement pose a risk of severe electric shock or even death. Never wade into water where there might be live electricity.
  • Structural rot.Drywall, insulation and beams weaken more and more as they remain underwater, putting the very structure of your home at risk. Only professionals have the right equipment to fully dry out your basement and prevent potentially catastrophic damage from occurring.
  • Buckling walls.Walls can buckle when pressure in the surrounding soil builds up due to oversaturation and improper drainage. An expert will be able to spot the warning signs.

If you experience flooding in your basement, don't let a DIY job put your health and the well-being of your home at risk.

For help restoring your home after a water loss, call SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles  at 847-983-4468. We’ll make it “Like it never even happened.”

Be Ready

2/4/2021 (Permalink)

Injuring 36 people in the United States every day and causing over $7 billion in property damage annually, home fires are America’s biggest disaster threat. And while 69% of American parents say that their children would know what to do in a fire, 52% of parents with kids ages 3–17 admit that they haven’t talked to their families about fire safety.
To protect your family it is important to know basic fire facts:
• Fire is fast. In less than 30 seconds, a small flame can grow completely out of control and turn into a major fire. Most deadly blazes occur in the home while people are sleeping, and upon waking, they have mere seconds to escape.
• Fire is hot. The heat from a fire is more threatening than the actual flames. In a blazing room, the temperature at floor level can be 100 degrees, while the temperature at eye level can rise to a sweltering 600 degrees. Inhaling this super-hot air can scorch your lungs.
• Fire is dark. Despite what you may see in the movies, actual house fires start out bright, but quickly descend into black smoke and complete darkness. If you wake up to a fire, you may struggle trying to find your way out of a home that you’ve lived in for years.
• Fire is toxic. The smoke and toxic gases produced by house fires kill more people than the flames do. Fire sucks up the oxygen in the air and produces smoke and poisonous gases, and breathing even small amounts of these toxins can make you drowsy, disoriented and short of breath.
When we truly understand the dangers of fire can we prepare ourselves for survival. Having a fire escape plan is one of the most important and easiest ways we can prepate. Here are seven simple steps to creating a plan.
STEP 1: MAP IT OUT
Draw or obtain a map of your home that illustrates all doors and windows.
STEP 2: FIGURE IT OUT
Identify two ways out of every room.
STEP 3: CHECK IT OUT
Make sure the exit doors/windows you’ve identified are in good working order and make for an easy escape.
STEP 4: TALK IT OUT
Agree on a common emergency meeting place in front of your home.
STEP 5: SCOPE IT OUT
Make sure your address can be seen from the street so that first responders know where to go.
STEP 6: SOUND IT OUT
Perform a monthly test on all smoke alarms; make sure everyone in your home can hear the siren, especially when asleep.
STEP 7: TEST IT OUT
Practice your fire escape plan with everyone in your home at least twice a year.
Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call Us Today – (847) 983-4468

Prepare Your Business

2/4/2021 (Permalink)

Five key things a business owner needs to know about fire safety to keep their employees, customers, and property safe from fire damage:
1. Building Fire Exits
If there is a fire, you need to be sure your employees and customers have a way to get out of your building. OSHA requires that all workplace buildings have at least two fire exits that are not located in close proximity to each other that can be used in a fire emergency. This can be a door, window, or other space large enough for a person to crawl through and access the outdoors.
OSHA also requires that you keep those fire exits clear. The only thing that is allowed to block or delay the opening of a fire door is an approved alarm system that is part of the fire door’s design. Also, exit routes from the buildings need to be free of any obstructions. Finally, all exit routes must be clearly marked with lighted exit signs.
2. Including Portable Fire Extinguishers
All workplace buildings are required by OSHA to have the proper type of fire extinguisher based on the type of fire hazards present. For instance, a building with a kitchen will need a fire extinguisher for grease fires, while a building with electrical fire hazards will need one for that purpose. Any employee who is in a position to need to use the fire extinguisher should be properly trained on how to use it. Once installed, fire extinguishers must be kept in good working order. It is not permissible for fire extinguishers to be left unchecked and untested. Make sure that you follow the recommended testing and inspection schedule from the extinguisher’s manufacture, and document those inspections.
3. Planning for Emergency Evacuation
Employers should provide written emergency action plans for employees to ensure everyone knows where exit routes are and what fire emergency procedures are in place. Employers and managers need a plan to account for all employees if the building is evacuated. This plan needs to be located somewhere that employees can review it. If your business has physically impaired employees, the plan must include steps to take to evacuate those employees quickly and safely. As part of this planning, make sure that you properly train your employees on what to do in the event of a fire. Do not assume that common sense will prevail and your employees will know what to do. Provide training and clear policies to be followed in the event of a fire, and review the training every six months to one year. As part of your plan, host regular fire drills. These allow employees to practice the evacuation procedures when there is no actual emergency. Make sure everyone is accounted for and all proper lockdown procedures are followed during drills, so your employees will be prepared for an actual fire event.
4. Planning for Fire Prevention
While having a plan for dealing with emergencies is good, the best plan is to prevent emergencies altogether. The National Fire Protection Association has a list of fire prevention regulations and tips that can help your business prevent any dangers that are common in the line of work you perform. Teach your employees proper fire prevention to ward off an emergency altogether. Keep in mind that prevention measures will vary depending on the type of business you run. A welding business is going to need different safety protocols than an office that uses computers for the majority of its work. A kitchen, where open flames are a daily occurrence, is going to have an even more lengthy set of guidelines.
5. Providing a Fire Suppression System
Finally, OSHA requires fire suppression systems in most workplaces, such as automatic sprinkler systems. When these systems detect a fire, they automatically spray water and sound the alarm to help suppress and control the fire while alerting the proper authorities. Like fire extinguishers, these systems need to be inspected and maintained to ensure they will work properly if a fire occurs.
Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call Us Today –847-983-4468

Before a Spring Storm Strikes

2/4/2021 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Morton Grove / East Niles News And Updates

Spring storms strike no matter where you live.  Wind, rain, hail, tornadoes, and flooding can cause costly damage to your home.

Luckily there are ways to prevent potential costly damage to your home.

  1. Clean out gutters and downspouts

Clogged gutters, drains, and downspouts can lead to roof damage during a storm. Dirt and debris can cause water to be unable to flow away from the roofline, adding weight to your roof and potentially causing a roof collapse.

Before the spring storms strike, check your downspouts and gutters to ensure that winter storms haven’t created any blockages. While you’re up there, make sure that all connections are secure and that no repairs are necessary.

  1. Seal your windows, doors, and roof

Check the seals around your doors and windows. Look for loose screws and cracked caulking, and make repairs if necessary. If you live in an area that's prone to heavy storms, consider investing in impact-resistant windows to protect your home.

When you inspect your doors, check that there are three hinges on each to provide additional support. Then, make sure your threshold is screwed directly into your house, as opposed to only your door frame.

Next, inspect your roof. If you find any missing or damaged shingles, an area of sagging, or other damage, have your roof professionally inspected before a storm hits. Repairs can keep your home from experiencing severe damage due to a leaky roof.

  1. Search for cracks in the foundation

Even small cracks in your foundation or basement can put your home at risk of major damage during a spring storm. If water seeps in through the cracks, your home could be in danger of flooding. Furthermore, high winds can make existing cracks prone to widening, causing significant structural damage throughout the home. If you find or suspect any cracks in your foundation or basement, call a professional to seal them to help you prepare for a flood.

  1. Install a backflow valve in your basement to prevent sewage backup

Heavy rain can cause municipal sewers systems to become overtaxed, creating the possibility for excess water to flow backward through your home's sewer lines. Plumbing fixtures situated at the lowest points in your home may be particularly prone to sewer backup. Consider installing a sewer backflow valve to divert unexpected water away from your sewer lines and back to your city's sewage system.

Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today 847-983-4468

Navigate the Ice and Snow Safely

2/2/2021 (Permalink)

  1. Plan ahead, give yourself sufficient time and plan your route. 
  • Traffic moves slowly in snowy conditions.
  • Give yourself extra time--don't assume a clear path for driving and walking will be available.
  1. Wear shoes or boots that provide traction on snow and ice. 
  • Footwear made of rubber and neoprene composite provide better traction than plastic and leather soles.
  • Wear flat-soled shoes.  Avoid shoes with heels.
  • Products are available with abrasive soles or cleats that provide special traction for walking on snow and ice. [Remember to remove when entering buildings.]
  1. Use special care when entering and exiting vehicles, climbing or descending stairs, entering or leaving buildings. 
  • Move slowly.
  • Remove snow/water from shoes when entering buildings.
  • Use handrails for support.
  • Try to keep your center of gravity over your support leg.
  • Use car for support.
  • Keep your hands out of your pockets.
  1. Walk on designated walkways as much as possible. 
  • Don’t take shortcuts over snow piles or areas where snow and ice removal is not feasible.
  • Look ahead when you walk. A sidewalk completely covered with ice may require travel along its grassy edge for traction.
  • Don’t text or read while walking.
  1. Walk safely on snow or ice.
  • Take short steps or shuffle for stability.
  • Bend slightly forward and walk flat-footed with your center of gravity directly over your feet as much as possible.
  • Keep your hands out of your pockets.
  • Be prepared to fall. If you fall, fall with sequential contacts at your thigh, hip and shoulder.  Avoid using outstretched arms to brace yourself.
  • Bend your back and head forward to avoid hitting your head against the ground.

6 Ways to Guard Against Germs in Everyday Life

9/2/2020 (Permalink)

6 Ways to Guard Against Germs in Everyday Life

Germs are everywhere, but there are things you can do to reduce your risk of getting sick. The following tips are intended to keep you informed so you can make the best decisions for yourself.

  1. Keep a Safe 6-Foot Distance

Germs can spread as far as 6 feet (2 meters) through droplets released in the air when you cough or sneeze.

Stay at least 6 feet away from anyone with a cold, flu or infection in all settings, both outdoors and especially indoors.

  1. Wash Your Hands

You can catch and spread germs when you touch something with germs already on it, like a doorknob or handrail, and then touch your eyes, nose, or mouth.

Wash your hands with soap and water or clean them with an alcohol-based hand gel. Encourage your family and friends to keep their hands clean as well.

Everyone should wash or clean their hands:

  • Before:

o             Handling food

o             Eating or drinking

  • After:

o             Coughing or sneezing

o             Using the bathroom

o             Touching shared objects, like pens, doorknobs, or electronic keypads

o             Touching or cleaning up after pets

  1. Cover Your Cough

You can spread germs to others when you cough or sneeze. Germs can remain in the air on tiny droplets -- ready to be breathed in. They can also remain on surfaces long after you've coughed or sneezed on or near them.

Use a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue away immediately, then wash your hands with soap and water or clean them with an alcohol-based hand gel.

If you don't have a tissue, cough or sneeze into your inner elbow. Then, immediately wash your hands with soap and water or clean them with an alcohol-based hand gel.

  1. Don't Share Personal Items

Germs can remain on surfaces of common objects, like straws and utensils, for hours. When you touch something with germs already on it, you can pick up and spread those germs.

Avoid sharing items that can come in contact with saliva or other body fluids.

  1. Avoid Frequent Contact with Dust and Dirt

Some germs can hide in soil and be carried on dust and dirt particles. You can get these germs if you breathe them in or transfer the germs by touching your eyes, nose, or mouth without first washing your hands.

  1. Get Vaccinated

Vaccinations help your body protect itself from germs, like the flu virus.

Help your body guard itself against germs by staying up to date on your vaccinations. Encourage your family and friends to also get vaccinated to reduce the risk of spreading germs.

Stop the spread of germs with a professional cleaning for your home or business. As an industry leading company for cleanup and restoration, SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles has the resources to help you immediately. Call 874-983-4468 to see how we can help clean your home or business.

SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles is Here to Help during this time of need

9/1/2020 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles is Here to Help during this time of need

During this unprecedented time caused by the global pandemic of coronavirus, this is a reminder to our customers that we are specialists in cleaning services, and we adhere to the highest cleaning and sanitation standards.

Specialized Training

We are prepared to clean and disinfect your home or business, according to protocols set forth by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. We have years of experience in dealing with biological contaminants, and we will go beyond the scope of work that regular janitorial staff perform on a daily basis.

The CDC encourages cleaning of high-touch surfaces such as counters, tabletops, doorknobs, light switches, bathroom fixtures, toilets, phones, keyboards, tablets and tables. Other spaces mentioned in the CDC’s guidance for commercial spaces include:

  • Kitchen/Food Areas
  • Bathrooms
  • Schools/Classrooms
  • Offices
  • Retail Spaces
  • Water Fountains
  • Shelving/Racks
  • Sales Counters
  • Carpets and Rugs
  • Stair Handrails
  • Elevator Cars
  • Playground Equipment
  • Fitness Equipment

Specialized Products

The CDC recommends usage of a labeled hospital-grade disinfectant with claims against similar pathogens to the coronavirus. Multiple products in the SERVPRO product line carry the EPA-approved emerging pathogens claims. While there is currently no product tested against this particular strain of the coronavirus, we are following all guidelines as provided by the CDC and local authorities.

Call Today for a Proactive Cleaning

If your home or business needs deep cleaning services, call the experts today

 – SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles, 847-983-4468

We are Cleaning Experts

3/18/2020 (Permalink)

SERVPRO is Here to Help during this time of need

During this unprecedented time caused by the global pandemic of coronavirus, this is a reminder to our customers that we are specialists in cleaning services, and we adhere to the highest cleaning and sanitation standards.

Specialized Training

We are prepared to clean and disinfect your home or business, according to protocols set forth by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. We have years of experience in dealing with biological contaminants, and we will go beyond the scope of work that regular janitorial staff perform on a daily basis.

The CDC encourages cleaning of high-touch surfaces such as counters, tabletops, doorknobs, light switches, bathroom fixtures, toilets, phones, keyboards, tablets and tables. Other spaces mentioned in the CDC’s guidance for commercial spaces include:

  • Kitchen/Food Areas
  • Bathrooms
  • Schools/Classrooms
  • Offices
  • Retail Spaces
  • Water Fountains
  • Shelving/Racks
  • Sales Counters
  • Carpets and Rugs
  • Stair Handrails
  • Elevator Cars
  • Playground Equipment
  • Fitness Equipment

Specialized Products

The CDC recommends usage of a labeled hospital-grade disinfectant with claims against similar pathogens to the coronavirus. Multiple products in the SERVPRO product line carry the EPA-approved emerging pathogens claims. While there is currently no product tested against this particular strain of the coronavirus, we are following all guidelines as provided by the CDC and local authorities.

Call Today for a Proactive Cleaning

If your home or business needs deep cleaning services, call the experts today – [SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles, 847-983-4468]

Sources:

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/hcp/guidance-prevent-spread.html?CDC_AA_refVal=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cdc.gov%2Fcoronavirus%2F2019-ncov%2Fguidance-prevent-spread.html

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/specific-groups/guidance-business-response.html

10 Fire Safety Tips for Seniors

1/29/2020 (Permalink)

Older adults are twice as likely to die or get injured from a fire as the rest of the population. In fact, seniors represented 40% of all fire related deaths in the United States. Decreased mobility, cognitive confusion, sight and hearing loss can all impact your ability to respond and take the quick steps necessary in an emergency situation.
Whether it's forgetting to butt out a cigarette or leaving the stove top on, fires are a serious risk for seniors, but one that's largely avoidable with a little extra care.
Here are some of the most recommended fire safety tips for seniors to help guide you on some of the things you should do to prevent fires and reduce the likelihood of injury should one occur.

  1. Butt Out
    Smoking is the #1 cause of fires that kill older adults. Never smoke in bed. Never smoke if there is an oxygen tank nearby. Instead, smoke outside to fully eliminate the risk of fire. Regardless, make sure you use deep and heavy ashtrays to avoid them from flipping or falling off a table by accident. Moreover, when putting out your cigarette, use water or sand to help snuff out any embers.
  2. Space Heaters Need Space
    Make sure space heaters are not too close to drapes, bedding, sofas or your clothing. In fact, the National Fire Protection Association recommends your space heater should be at least 3 feet away from everything. Shut off AND unplug your space heater when you leave your home and go to bed. Never plug your space heater into an extension cord or power strip, plug them directly into the wall.
    As an extra precaution, you can also get a space heater that is designed to turn off if it gets tipped over.
  3. Cook with Care
    Most cooking fires happen when you fry food. If a pan or pot of food catches fire, keep a lid nearby and cover the pan. Wear short, rolled-up or fitted sleeves when cooking so they don't catch fire accidentally. Don't leave the room when food is being cooked on the stove. Move things that can burn away from the stove.
  4. Smoke Alarms
    Did you know the chance of surviving a home fire almost doubles with the use of a smoke alarm? They work.
    You should get a smoke alarm for every room, outside each bedroom and on every level of your home. If you can get a connected smoke alarm system, so that if one goes off, they all go off. You should also test your smoke alarms every month (simply press the test button). If hearing the alarm is a problem, you can get a strobe alarm or one that shakes your bed in the event it goes off. Lastly, if reacting to a smoke alarm is a problem due to poor hearing, vision or immobility consider getting a smoke alarm that's connected to a monitoring center in the event it gets triggered.
  5. Get Fireplace & Wood Stoves Inspected Annually
    Your fireplace or wood stove may need a cleaning. Too much soot in your chimney can cause a fire. Cracks in chimney bricks and rusting in stove pipes can also cause a fire. Avoid burning green wood, garbage or cardboard boxes in your fireplace, as they increase dangerous soot buildup in your chimney. Also, if you have fireplace glass doors, keep them open when making a fire.
  6. Make a Getaway Plan
    If there is a fire that's too hard to control, get out. Create a fire escape plan and familiarize yourself with it. You should know the exits from your house or apartment, as well as how to get out of your building. Make sure your designated escape door can be easily opened, when rushed and visibility is poor. If you have difficulty maneuvering quickly or without help, consider getting one of the many dependable and reputable medical alert systems. If you have an emergency, simply press the button and agents will send help right away.
  7. Learn How to Put Out a Fire on Your Clothing
    If your clothes catch on fire, you'll need to learn how to put out the fire. According to the CDC and the National Fire Prevention Association, stop (don't run), drop and roll. Cover your face. Roll until the fire is out. If you're not able to drop, use something like a blanket to put out the flames. Run cold water on your burn until emergency responders arrive.
  8. Avoid Escape Proof Doors
    If your loved one has issues with wandering due to Alzheimer’s or dementia, do not create a complicated lock that will keep them from opening the front door. You could end up trapping them inside the house in the event of a fire. Better to explore getting them a GPS system that will track them if they wander or an alarm system that will alert you if they leave a designated perimeter.
  9. Avoid Candles
    Scented candles have grown in popularity, they smell delicious and they can create a calm and soothing environment. Avoid any open flames in your home to the extent possible. Consider electric scented candles or electric candles as a safer alternative to the real thing.
  10. Keep Fire Extinguishers Nearby
    You should have at least one fire extinguisher near every fire hazard, whether it be the kitchen, the fireplace, wood stove or your furnace room. Make sure your fire extinguishers are full and operational. Also, don't place the extinguishers too close to the hazard. For example, place an extinguisher in the kitchen, but far away from the stove, that way if your stove top does catch fire, you'll be able to get the extinguisher without burning yourself.

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call Us Today –847-983-4468

12 Tips to Prevent Workplace Fires

1/29/2020 (Permalink)

12 Tips to ensure a fire-safe workplace:

Step 1. Get Organized– Practice good workplace housekeeping. Clutter contributes to fires by providing fuel and by preventing access to exits and emergency equipment.

Step 2. Designated Smoking Areas – Smoke only in designated areas, and extinguish smoking materials safely. Never smoke in storerooms or chemical storage areas.

Step 3. Fire Extinguishers – Maintaining the appropriate type and number of fire extinguishers and learn how to properly use a fire extinguisher.

Step 4. Electrical Hazards – Report all electrical hazards. Many fires start in faulty wiring and malfunctioning electrical equipment.

Step 5. Access to Control Panels – Electrical control panels need to have free access maintained so that the electric could be shut off easily.

Step 6. Maintenance – Maintain machinery to prevent overheating and friction sparks.

Step 7. Sprinkler Systems & Smoke Detectors – Never block sprinklers, firefighting equipment or emergency exits. Observe clearances when stacking materials. Testing of sprinkler systems and smoke detectors at least annually.

Step 8. Chemical Safety – Use and store chemicals safely. Read the label and the Material Safety Data Sheet to determine flammability and other fire hazards. Provide adequate ventilation when using and storing these substances.

Step 9. Waste Control & Storage – Control the accumulations of flammable and combustible waste materials and residues so that they do not contribute to a fire emergency.

Step 10. Prevent Ignition – Use all precautions to prevent ignition in potentially explosive atmospheres such as those containing flammable liquid vapors or fine particles. Use non-sparking tools, and control static electricity as required.

Step 11. Exits – Emergency exit diagrams should be posted and emergency exits should be well lit with neon-regulation signs.

Step 12. Contact Info – Employees should have a list of emergency contact phone numbers in case of emergency. Remember that people will often panic in an intense situation; therefore, basics such as the company address, phone number and floor plan should be posted.

Prevention is always better than cure and it’s best to avoid catastrophe in the first place or at least minimize the damage. The simple truth is that fire emergencies and disasters can strike anyone, anytime, anywhere. So, if a fire does break out in your workplace A-C-T, Don’t Panic

A – ASSESS THE SITUATION

C – CHOOSE YOUR RESPONSE

T – TAKE ACTION

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call Us Today –847-983-4468

Severe Thunderstorms are Possible

1/22/2020 (Permalink)

Here are some definitions and guidelines set up by the National Weather Service to follow to help keep you and your family safe:

Severe Thunderstorm Watch - issued when conditions are favorable for the development of severe thunderstorms, people located in and around the watch area should keep an eye to the sky and listen to their NOAA weather radio all hazards or tune to local broadcast media for further weather information. The watch is intended to give you time to prepare, time to review safety rules.

Severe Thunderstorm Warning - issued when a severe thunderstorm has been detected by National Weather Service Doppler radar or a reliable report has been received. A warning is usually issued for portions of one or two counties, for an hour or less. If the warning includes your neighborhood or work place, you should take immediate action to protect your life and the lives of others. Severe thunderstorms can produce large hail and damaging winds. Tornadoes can and occasionally do accompany severe thunderstorms. Treat this warning the same as you would a tornado warning by taking the proper safety precautions.

  • The best defense against thunderstorms is to stay inside a sturdy building or shelter that can protect you from deadly lightning, large hail, damaging winds, flooding rain and tornadoes. Fortunately, thunderstorms typically do not last very long and will most often pass by your location in less than one hour.
  • Once in a shelter, stay away from windows and avoid electrical equipment and plumbing. Remember to bring pets inside. If there is time, secure loose objects outside as these objects often become dangerous flying debris in high winds.
  • Postpone outdoor activities until the storms have passed.
  • If caught outside, take shelter in a sturdy enclosed building or hard top automobile immediately. Avoid open spaces, isolated objects, high ground and metallic objects.
  • Get out of boats and away from bodies of water. Remember, if you can hear thunder, you are close enough to the storm to be struck by lightning.

Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today 847-983-4468

Stay Safe During a Winter Storm

1/22/2020 (Permalink)

Winter storms are dangerous. They can bring cold temperatures, power failures, loss of communication services, and icy roads. This can make being outside dangerous, so you should limit your time outside. Although staying indoors as much as possible can help reduce the risk of car crashes and falls on the ice, you may also face hazards inside your home.

Protect yourself and your loved ones during a winter storm. Take extra steps to make sure you heat your home safely, and follow the tips below.

Heat your home safely.

If you plan to use a wood stove, fireplace, or space heater, be extremely careful. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions and remember these safety tips:

  • Turning on the stove for heat is not safe; have at least one of the following heat sources in case the power goes out:
    • Extra blankets, sleeping bags, and warm winter coats
    • Fireplace that is up to code with plenty of dry firewood or a gas log fireplace
    • Portable space heaters or kerosene heaters. Check with your local fire department to make sure that kerosene heaters are legal in your area.
  • Use electric space heaters with automatic shut-off switches and non-glowing elements. Make sure to keep them away from any flammable materials, like curtains or blankets.
  • Use fireplaces, wood stoves, or other combustion heaters only if they are properly vented to the outside and do not leak gas from the flue or exhaust into the indoor air space.
  • Have your heating system serviced by a qualified technician every year.
  • Do not burn paper in a fireplace.
  • Make sure you have proper ventilation if you must use a kerosene heater.
  • Use only the type of fuel your heater is designed to use—don’t substitute.
  • Keep heat sources, like space heaters, at least 3 feet away from drapes, furniture, or bedding. Never cover your space heater.
  • Never place a space heater on top of furniture or near water.
  • Never leave children unattended near a space heater.
  • Make sure that the cord of an electric space heater is not a tripping hazard, but do not run the cord under carpets or rugs.
  • Avoid using extension cords to plug in your space heater.
  • If your space heater has a damaged electrical cord or produces sparks, do not use it.

Light your home safely.

If there is a power failure:

  • Use battery-powered flashlights or lanterns rather than candles, if possible. Candles can lead to house fires.
    • If you do use candles, never leave lit candles unattended.

Use generators and other appliances safely.

  • Generators should be located at least 20 feet from any window, door, or vent and in a space where rain and snow will not reach them.
  • Protect yourself from carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning by installing a battery-operated CO detector.
  • Never using generators, gas or charcoal grills, camp stoves, or similar devices inside your home, in basements, in garages, or near windows. The fumes are deadly.
  • Plug in appliances to the generator using individual heavy-duty, outdoor-rated extension cords.
  • Do not use the generator or appliances if they are wet.
  • Do not store gasoline indoors where the fumes could ignite.

Conserve heat.

  • Some gas-fueled heaters, such as vent-less gas fireplaces, require some ventilation. Otherwise, if you don’t need extra ventilation, keep as much heat as possible inside your home.
  • Avoid unnecessarily opening doors or windows.
  • Close off unneeded rooms.
  • Stuff towels or rags in cracks under doors.
  • Close draperies or cover windows with blankets at night.

Make sure babies and older adults stay warm.


Babies

Infants less than one year old should never sleep in a cold room because they lose body heat more easily than adults. Follow these tips to keep your baby safe and warm during the extreme cold:

  • Remove any pillows or other soft bedding. These can increase the risk of smothering and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).
  • Dress babies in warmer clothing such as footed pajamas, one-piece wearable blankets, or sleep sacks.
  • Try to maintain a warm temperature inside your home. If you’re not able to keep your home warm, make temporary arrangements to stay elsewhere.
  • In an emergency, you can keep your baby warm using your own body heat. If you must sleep, take precautions to prevent rolling on or smothering your baby.


Older Adults

Older adults often make less body heat because of a slower metabolism and less physical activity. Check on elderly friends and neighbors often to make sure their homes are heated properly.

If you are over 65 years of age, check the temperature in your home often during extremely cold weather.

Keep a water supply.

Extreme cold can cause water pipes in your home to freeze and sometimes rupture or break. When you are expecting very cold or freezing temperatures:

  • Leave all water taps slightly open so they drip continuously.
  • Keep the temperature inside your home warm.
  • Allow heated air to reach pipes. For example, open cabinet doors beneath the kitchen and bathroom sinks.
  • If your pipes do freeze, do not thaw them with a torch. Thaw the pipes slowly with warm air from an electric hair dryer.
    • If you cannot thaw your pipes, or the pipes have broken open, use bottled water or get water from a neighbor’s home.
  • As an emergency measure, if no other water is available, snow can be melted for water. Bringing water to a rolling boil for one minute will kill most germs but won’t get rid of chemicals sometimes found in snow.

Eat well-balanced meals, and avoid alcoholic or caffeinated drinks.

Eating well-balanced meals will help you stay warmer. Do not drink alcoholic or caffeinated beverages—they cause your body to lose heat faster. Instead, drink warm, sweet beverages or broth to help keep yourself warm. If you have any dietary restrictions, ask your doctor.

Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today 847-983-4468

5 IMPORTANT WINTER WORKPLACE SAFETY TIPS

1/22/2020 (Permalink)

Some view winter weather as a welcome excused absence from work or school. Others must still find their way into the office. What they don’t want to encounter on their way are slick sidewalks, power outages, or the worst – inching your way through icy gridlock only to learn after they’ve battled the weather that the office is, in fact, closed. “Sorry,” simply won’t suffice.
Reduce your risk for injuries and dissatisfied employees by doing your part to protect and inform them on bad weather days. You may not be able to stop the snow, rain, and wind, but you can ensure every employee has a safe way to an office that is in working condition.


1. Get Them There Safely


You can’t make the roads to your office building safe, but you can inform your employees which roads are passable. This isn’t always easy, especially if you have employees on different devices and in various locations.
Geotargeting is a great way to focus communications within particular areas that are affected by weather. When integrated into your mass communications system, you instantly have a simple and quick way to send impacted employees a push notification or text, notifying them of the safest route. You can even see issues (like road closures) on a map, so you can notify employees of relevant travel issues.

2. Prepare Mobile and Outdoor Employees


If you have personnel who must drive for their job, it’s your duty to properly train and equip them. Employees who work outdoors are also vulnerable to weather conditions. Many times, these workers will need to halt their duties until the weather clears. On the other hand, some (like electrical repair crews) are even busier during bad weather. When these workers are in the elements, they can have a heightened danger of injuries and accidents. Equip them with a way to call for immediate help.

3. Fortify the Office


Did you know that falls involving ice, sleet, or snow are one of the biggest risks people face during the winter months? In fact, in 2014, there were 42,480 workplace injuries involving snow and ice that required at least one day away from work to recuperate. And those are just the falls that people reported!
You can’t prevent all falls, but you can salt the parking lot, sidewalks, and steps ahead of time. You can also place large, absorbent mats at every entrance to prevent slips once employees are inside the building.


Ask your building’s superintendent to check the heating and electric systems, as it is common for power lines to go down in ice storms or high winds. These power outages can last for days, crippling operations for any business. Should power go down while employees are at work, be sure you have a plan as to if and how employees are expected to continue to work, as well as a communication plan in place to notify employees of the outage and their instructions.

4. Communicate Effectively and Often


Your employees are going to expect some type of communication when they know a big storm is coming. Don’t leave them hanging! A mass communication system with geotargeting capabilities is a perfect solution to ensure the right messaging is getting to the right employees. Don’t rely on email or voicemails. Those can get lost in the shuffle, if they are ever checked at all.
An emergency alert system is designed to reach every employee, despite their physical location, on multiple communication channels. This means your employees can receive alerts and notifications on their mobile device via texts, push notifications, email and/or voice calls that can either provide all of the relevant information or direct them to a link to a comprehensive web page. No matter where they are, what they do, or what mobile device they are using, they will receive the information they need. You can also use the geotargeting system to segment your audience by location so that only the employees in the affected area receive the notifications.

5. Don’t Dismiss Other Winter Threats


Bad winter weather isn’t the only thing companies and employees must grapple with during the winter months. Colder temperatures often come with a rise in illnesses, such as the flu. According to the CDC, influenza often begins to increase in October and November, peaking from December through February. Beyond illnesses, winter often brings a higher risk for fires. People turn up the heat, using space heaters, fires, and even ovens to warm a home. If you allow space heaters in the office, be sure to educate your employees on proper use, such as not placing anything within three feet of the heater.

What Your Employees Want to Know


It’s easy to assume employees will be watching the news and weather reports, but many won’t. Be sure you have a way to communicate with all of your employees about the weather and its disruptions in the schedule.

What do they most need to know?


• Whether commutes have become impossible
• Whether power outages or surges will impact their work
• Emergency contact information
• Status of any delivery delays
• Any modifications to work hours and/or shifts
• Where they can find updates
• Whether they can work from home
The most important thing you can do is let your employees know you have their best interest at heart. This means keeping them informed before, during, and after the weather event. The fortunate part about most winter weather storms is that they are predictable, and therefore plannable. Be sure your emergency plan is current and relevant to each location. Ensure every employee understands the intricacies of the plan.
Do what you can now to prepare and be sure you have a communication system that will help you get the word out fast. It will make these cold winter months more tolerable for you and your employees.


About SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles


SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles 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.

Pet Fire Safety

1/17/2020 (Permalink)

According to the American Red Cross home fires are the most common disaster that they respond to – and also the most preventable.

Have a Plan That Includes Your Pet:

  • The best way to protect your pets from the effects of a fire is to include them in your family plan. This includes having their own disaster supplies kit as well as arranging in advance for a safe place for them to stay if you need to leave your home.

  • When you practice your escape plan, practice taking your pets with you. Train them to come to you when you call.

  • In the event of a disaster, if you must evacuate, the most important thing you can do to protect your pets is to evacuate them, too. But remember: never delay escape or endanger yourself or family to rescue a family pet.

Prevent Your Pets from Starting Fires:

  • Extinguish Open Flames - Pets are generally curious and will investigate cooking appliances, candles, or even a fire in your fireplace. Ensure your pet is not left unattended around an open flame and make sure to thoroughly extinguish any open flame before leaving your home.
  • Remove Stove Knobs - Be sure to remove stove knobs or protect them with covers before leaving the house - a stove or cook top is the number one piece of equipment involved in your pet starting a fire.

  • Invest in Flameless Candles - These candles contain a light bulb rather than an open flame, and take the danger out of your pet knocking over a candle. Cats are notorious for starting fires when their tails turn over lit candles.

  • Secure Young Pets - keep them confined away from potential fire-starting hazards when you are away from home such as in crates or behind baby gates in secure areas.

Help Firefighters Help Your Pets:

  • Keep pets near entrances when away from home. Keep collars on pets and leashes at the ready in case firefighters need to rescue your pet. When leaving pets home alone, keep them in areas or rooms near entrances where firefighters can easily find them.

  • Affix a pet alert window cling and write down the number of pets inside your house and attach the static cling to a front window. This critical information saves rescuers time when locating your pets. Make sure to keep the number of pets listed on them updated.

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call Us Today – (847) 983-4468

FIRE SAFETY TIPS FOR THE WORKPLACE

1/17/2020 (Permalink)

GENERAL PRECAUTIONS IN THE WORKPLACE

Eliminate workplace fire hazards:

  • Damaged electrical outlets, cords, cables, etc.
  • Overloaded outlets and circuits.
  • Combustible objects in unsecured locations (included excessive trash and recycling)—keep these far from electrical equipment!

  • Fire exit obstacles.
  • Keep work space and equipment clean, dry, and well-ventilated, and especially clean of oil and dust.

Prepare for emergencies:

  • Follow work space protocol and guidelines to ensure safety and health; know and understand rules and procedures concerning fire emergencies.
  • Ensure that smoke alarms and sprinkler systems are installed, working properly, and are not blocked.
  • Conduct regular fire drills.

Employers should follow these workplace fire safety tips:

  • Post clear fire escape plans on every level.
  • Educate all employees on emergency procedures, exit locations, escape routes, fire alarms and drills, and the use of fire extinguishers.

  • Conduct regular drills.
  • Install and properly maintain all fire safety equipment.

  • Provide for disabled employees.

HAZARDOUS ELECTRICS AND EQUIPMENT

  • Use only electrical products evaluated by a nationally recognized laboratory (i.e. UL).
  • Immediately replace damaged, hazardous equipment.

  • Look out for anything that appears overheated, smells strange, or delivers electrical shock.
  • Replace all damaged, worn, frayed, or old wires.
  • Only use three-prong plugs in three-slot outlets (and, similarly: two-slot plug into two-slot outlets).
  • Equipment that emanates substantial heat should be at least several feet away from combustible surfaces and objects.

  • Heaters must include a thermostat control mechanism.

SMOKE ALARMS: A NECESSITY, NOT AN OPTION

  • Invest smoke detectors for every room or office.
  • Install dual sensor smoke alarms; make sure they contain both ionization and photoelectric smoke sensors.
  • Test your smoke detectors (and sprinkler system) once a month.
  • Replace the batteries at least once a year (possible exception: non-replaceable 10-year lithium batteries; still, be sure to test them); many manufacturers also encourage a replacement of the smoke detectors after a decade.
  • Never disable a smoke alarm.

A NO-SMOKING ZONE IS LESS OF A DANGER ZONE

  • Keep the work space a no-smoking zone. If you must smoke, smoke outdoors, and always ensure that you properly extinguish the cigarette in a sand-filled can, or drown cigarette butts and ashes in water.
  • Never throw away hot cigarette butts or ashes without attending to them properly.

IN CASE OF FIRE: FOLLOW THE EVACUATION PLAN

  • Immediately call 911 in case of a fire.
  • Know and understand the fire emergency and evacuation plan.
  • Plan at multiple escape routes from as many locations as possible.
  • Check the condition of fire ladders and fire escapes; ladders should be collapsible and have been evaluated by a nationally recognized laboratory (i.e. UL); fire escapes need to be stable, secure, and easily accessible.
  • Ensure that windows don’t become obstacles; glass should be opened easily and screens should be swiftly removed.
  • Never use the elevator. Walk—don’t run—down the stairs.

If you cannot evacuate:

  • Remain calm and put as much distance as possible between yourself and the fire.
  • Seal all cracks with wet materials (towels, jackets) to prevent smoke from seeping into the room.
  • Wait at the window; shout for help and signal your location by waving the most visible object.
  • Open the window for air, but try not to break it; you may need to close it if smoke begins to seep in.

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call Us Today –847-983-4468

Timely Tips for Winter Safety

1/17/2020 (Permalink)

According to the Accident Fund Insurance Company of America and United Heartland, during the winter, slips and falls represent one-third of all workers' compensation claims.

Every employer should have an effective safety and health management system in place to protect its most valuable asset: its employees. Employers should prepare for winter conditions and provide helpful information to their employees on how to avoid injury and illness.
Worker injuries can negatively affect a business's bottom line, resulting in increased workers' compensation and insurance costs, overtime, and lost work days for employees. By taking the proper safety precautions this winter, job providers can avoid nasty slips and falls that will cost them in the future.


The following tips can help increase winter safety:
• Keep all walkways cleared of ice and snow.
• Have de-icing products handy for hard-to-remove ice or snow.
• Make sure all walkways and passageways are clearly marked and well lit.
• Be careful of slippery surfaces inside buildings.
• Wear slip-resistant footwear.
• Practice safe walking on slippery surfaces by taking slow, small steps.
• Avoid carrying heavy loads that may offset your balance.
• Clearly mark or barricade hazardous areas.
• Wear sunglasses on sunny days to lessen winter glare.
• Take extra precautions when entering and exiting vehicles.
• Know the symptoms of frostbite and the first aid steps to address it.

About SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles

SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles 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.

Toilet Overflows

8/21/2019 (Permalink)

What Do You Do When Your Toilet Overflows?

Oh no, the toilet is overflowing is a message you hope you never hear!  But rest assured, unfortunately, it happens all the time and our SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles technicians are just a phone call away.

If your toilet begins to overflow following a flush, you want to make sure you stop the flow of water immediately to minimize any water damage.  To do this, remove the tank lid and press down on the bottom flapper valve.  This will prevent any additional water from getting into the toilet bowl.  Once you have pressed the flapper valve, lift the float that operates the tank fill valve to stop the tank from filling.  This should allow the water level to drop; otherwise, turn off the water valve behind your toilet by turning it clockwise. 

The Source of the toilet bowl overflow might be a Clog

You may have a blockage in the toilet bowl or a clogged drain or sewer line.  If you are on a septic system, your septic tank may be full. 

Our SERVPRO technicians are trained water damage restoration professionals and certified by the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC).  Let SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles be the calm in your chaos the next time your toilet overflows.  Our vehicles are fully equipped with state-of-the-art water extraction, drying, and moisture testing equipment to handle your loss.

Call us at 847-983-4468

IICRC Certified Firm

8/21/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles is an IICRC-certified restoration company.

Water Damage and IICRC Certification of Your Restoration Firm

Water damage can be deceptive. Water penetrates into structural cavities creating trapped pockets of saturation. The detection of water in these areas can often only be discovered with sophisticated moisture detection meters. Undetected moisture will continue to cause damage. This damage, at a minimum, will cause odors. Greater damage will surface when materials delaminate, shrink, split and further deteriorate to where costly repairs are required.

More than just removing excess water, restorers certified by the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) have the knowledge and equipment to further dry a home or facility (including substructure materials) completely back to preloss conditions. Through timely response and the careful monitoring of water damage, mold and other health issues can be prevented. If water damage has been present too long, mold will occur.

All IICRC-certified professionals have the training and experience to identify moisture sources, evaluate mold growth (visible or suspected), contain damage, remove contamination and dry materials to ensure that mold will not return.

More About the Importance of IICRC Certification

The Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) is a certification and standard-setting nonprofit organization for the inspection, cleaning and restoration industries.

When you see an IICRC logo, you can be confident that an IICRC-certified experienced, qualified professional is caring for your valuable property. IICRC Certified Firms employ technicians who, after study, field experience and passing comprehensive exams, have received IICRC certifications in specific cleaning, restoration and inspection categories such as upholstery, wood flooring, stone and tile flooring, carpet cleaning, odor removal, mold remediation, water damage, fire damage restoration and more. 

SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles is an IICRC-certified restoration company. Call us today at 847-983-4468 if you have water damage. 

Storm Tips

8/20/2019 (Permalink)

During the spring and summer months, storms that produce lightning, thunder, heavy rain, flooding, strong winds, tornadoes, and hail can occur. These storms are extremely dangerous and can appear suddenly with little warning and may only last a few minutes but have the strength and power to cause a great amount of damage.

Before A Thunderstorm

  • Check weather forecasts daily, purchase an all-hazard weather radio and have multiple ways to receive weather alerts.
  • Plan outdoor events near a secure shelter where people can go in the event of a storm.
  • Keep trees trimmed to prevent limbs from falling onto buildings, cars or people.
  • If hail or strong winds are expected, park vehicles under a shelter to avoid damage.
  • Make sure preparedness kits are portable for easy transport if evacuation is necessary. Preparedness kits should be tailored to household needs.
  • Bring pets indoors before a storm moves into the area. Sheds, dog houses, and garages do not provide ample protection from lightning, hail, high winds, and tornadoes.

SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles is alert and ready for storm damage concerns. Call us today at 847-983-4468

Fire Pit Safety

8/20/2019 (Permalink)

Safety Tips When Using Your Fire Pit

Fire pits are perfect for your outdoor gatherings. The fire pit is a beautiful addition to your landscaping and a great way to complement and add a relaxing ambiance to your property. 
SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles wants to make sure you are keeping you and your property safe by following these safety tips!

Fire Pit Location


  •  Make sure to place your fire pit AT LEAST 10 feet away from any structures. This may help prevent sparks from hitting your home and excessive smoke from entering your or your neighbor’s home.
    •    Do NOT place your fire pit under tree branches or on a covered deck. Make sure your fire pit is in a location where the flames and sparks will not hit any objects.


Fire Pit Site Preparation


  •  If your fire pit is not built into the ground, make sure you have stone, brick, gravel, or concrete under the pit. This will help prevent the area below the pit from burning. 
    •    You should NEVER place your pit over dry grass or over a wooden deck. This is to prevent any overheating or causing of a spark a fire to the ground below it.


Weather


  •  Do not use your fire pit if it is windy. Windy conditions may cause sparks from the fire to fall in an area that is flammable.
    •    When you are using your fire pit, you should observe what direction the breeze is blowing. You should move any object out of the way of where the breeze is blowing to help prevent a fire from occurring.


Lighting the Fire Pit


  •  When lighting your fire pit, do NOT use lighter fluid or gasoline to light the pit or to relight fires. 
    •    The easiest and safest way to light your fire pit is to place kindling under the wood.  Kindling can be newspaper, dead leaves, pine needles, wood shaving and small pieces of tree bark.  Place a small stack under the wood in your fire pit and try lighting it instead of the wood.  Once the kindling catches fire, the rest of the wood should also ignite.
    •    You should always keep water nearby just in case the fire inside of the pit spreads.

    Before you use your fire pit, you should check your town’s laws on fire pits. Some towns require a permit and an inspection. If the unfortunate happens, call the experts at SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles 847-983-4468, and we will make it “Like it never even happened.”



Back to School Safety

8/19/2019 (Permalink)

Home Safety Tips For Parents with Children going Back To School

Home security and safety are especially important if children will be alone at home for any length of time. Walking home alone, entering an empty house, and staying safe at home can be a challenge. But with guidance, rules, and helpful products, parents can help children stay safe at home.

  • Teach kids to lock the door and not open it for anyone: Children should know how to properly lock all doors. Teach them that they should never open the front door while they’re home alone, even for deliveries or mail.
  • Show kids how to use the alarm system: Make sure children know how to properly use the alarm system, both arming and disarming it. You should also show them how to hit the panic button and what to do if there’s an emergency.
  • Plan a safe route to school: Work with your child to plan a direct route to school. Avoid as many street crossings as possible as well as open fields, vacant lots, and desolate areas. 
  • Help children memorize important numbers: Teach kids their home address, their home number, your cell phone number, and the number of a neighbor who can help. You should also teach them how to use 911 in an emergency.
  • Teach children about stranger danger: Make sure kids know not to talk to strangers on their way home from school, even if they seem friendly or helpful. 
  • Make an emergency plan for fire: Work on an emergency plan together and determine how your child will exit in case there’s a fire. 
  • Keep communication open: Ask your child to text or call when they get home each day. Encourage them to call you if there’s any problem at all so you can help.
  • Have a plan for lost keys: Even responsible children can lose keys. Choose a destination for a spare key or leave one with a close neighbor or family member.
  • Establish rules for safety at home: Determine whether children will be allowed to use the stove or oven when home alone, rules for visitors or leaving the house, even screen time. Set kids up for a safe afternoon at home by establishing your expectations.

Stay Safe and Have a Wonderful School Year from your local SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles!

Water Categories

8/14/2019 (Permalink)

When dealing with a water loss, it is important to know there is more in the water than just water! As stated in the previous blog, pathogens are carried in water, and the likelihood for microbial growth is greatly increased when coupled with the passage of time, and structural intrusion.  In dealing with water damages, there are 3 categories:  Category 1, 2 and 3.  Water health and safety conditions change with the passing of time, and it is for this reason, the most important factor in mitigating a water loss is response time.  When you notice a water leak, whether big or small, getting professional help quickly is key to preventing further damage, minimizing mitigation costs, and to prevent possible illness.  As water passes through such things as carpet and building structures, it becomes contaminated. Therefore, even a Category 1, clean water damage, can become contaminated, Category 3 water, in just a matter of time.  This type of contaminated water requires increased safety methods for mitigating, and the professionals at SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles are highly trained in this area.  For health reasons and to minimize loss, a quick response is imperative.  SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles can get to you faster when you call right away 847-983-4468! 

Mold Growing in Your Business

8/14/2019 (Permalink)

Mold Growing in Your Business

No Worries call SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles for your mold inquires.

Leaving mold untreated can lead to an unsafe environment in your business as well as surrounding businesses. SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles has skilled technicians to treat and mitigate the mold before it has the chance to spread into the surroundings.

About Our Mold Remediation Services

SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles specializes in mold cleanup and restoration.  Our crews are highly trained restoration professionals that use specialized equipment and techniques to properly remediate your mold problem quickly and safely.

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.

If you suspect mold in your business, Please Call SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles at 847-983-4468. Fast, Friendly, and Reliable Service. We will get your business "Like it never even happened."

Planning Can Keep Your Home Dry

8/7/2019 (Permalink)

Here at SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles we see a lot of damage.  Our crews are out working hard to restore homes from fire, water, mold, whatever the situation may be.  With winter weather coming, water damage will be on the rise.    We would like to share some information to keep homes safe, and in order to do this, having a plan and knowing what to look for is key.  

Water damage can occur in homes in a variety of ways.  Homeowners should check for leaks throughout their houses, inspect pipes and connections in bathrooms, kitchens and laundry rooms. Look under and around sinks and around bathtubs for any discolorations. Do not ignore connections to dishwashers or refrigerators with water and ice dispensers. 

It is very important to make sure water is flowing properly down drains. If not, try clearing the drain with a plunger or an over the counter product. If that does not work, call a professional for assistance.  In order to keep drains and pipes clear, follow simple steps such as disposing of cooking oil in a container rather than pouring down the drain, never flush diapers and other inappropriate items down toilets, and be careful of what you put in your garbage disposal.  Eggs or potato peelings, for example would not be good to put in your disposal.  In addition, backflow valves should be installed in sanitary and storm sewer lines.

Check the floors around water heaters for wet spot.  This could indicate you have a rusted tank or other problem, which you would want to take care of right away before the damage gets worse.  If necessary, have the tank replaced as soon as possible. 

A leak in the roof of your home and clogged gutters or downspouts can also lead to significant water damage inside your home. As soon as you notice a leak in your roof, or even signs of significant wear, have it inspected and repaired immediately.  In addition, keep all gutters and downspouts free of leaves and other debris that could cause back up water to leak into your house.

Owners in properties located in areas prone to flooding should give serious consideration to applying a waterproof coating or membrane to the exterior walls and installing watertight shields over doors, windows and other openings.

During the winter months, such as now, keep an eye out for snow accumulation on the downside of a higher-level roof, where blowing snow will pile up. For safe snow removal, ask a roofing contractor for a referral.  Also, remove snow from basement stairwells, window wells, and walls to prevent water or moisture from penetrating walls. Also, keep attics well ventilated to maintain temperatures close to the outside, which will minimize the risk of dams forming. 

Ensure pipes do not freeze and burst by keeping the heat in your home at an acceptable level, cover exposed pipes with insulation, sleeves, or wrapping and open cabinet doors to allow warm air to circulate around the pipes.

Of course, if water damage does occur in your home, immediately call SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles 847-983-4468 for water removal and restoration.

Water is Life

8/6/2019 (Permalink)

Water -  life’s sustenance, the world’s most valuable resource, accounts for an estimated 70 % of the earth’s surface.  According to the USGS Water Science School, the adult human body contains up to 60 % water.   It is commonly known that it is necessary to consume a certain amount of water in order to survive and support cell growth as well as promote healthy digestion.  Ironically, water is also the leading cause for destruction and damage in North America (RSA, 2015).  Excessive amounts of water comes not only in the form of hurricanes, but most water damage actually occurs in building structures due to rain, construction defects, plumbing failures, damage from freezing and even improper maintenance.   Water is so very unique because it is the only natural substance that is found in 3 states – liquid, solid, and gas – at temperatures normal to the earth.   Often overlooked when it comes to thinking of the dangers of water, according to Restoration Sciences Academy (2015) it is also the single leading carrier of pathogens in the world today. Furthermore, the elements supporting microbial growth are always present; leaving only the addition of excessive moisture to create a destructive chain reaction in which microorganisms can multiply and cause structural deterioration, create odors, and potentially create serious health issues for building occupants.  For these reasons, it is very important to properly and professionally mitigate water damage after a loss.  All restorers should follow the standard of care for water restoration, IICRC.  SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles has this expertise, and we are here when you need us to help answer your questions and safety mitigate any damages from water that you

Have a Plan

8/1/2019 (Permalink)

Injuring 36 people in the United States every day and causing over $7 billion in property damage annually, home fires are America’s biggest disaster threat. And while 69% of American parents say that their children would know what to do in a fire, 52% of parents with kids ages 3–17 admit that they haven’t talked to their families about fire safety.

To protect your family it is important to know basic fire facts:

  • Fire is fast. In less than 30 seconds, a small flame can grow completely out of control and turn into a major fire. Most deadly blazes occur in the home while people are sleeping, and upon waking, they have mere seconds to escape.
  • Fire is hot. The heat from a fire is more threatening than the actual flames. In a blazing room, the temperature at floor level can be 100 degrees, while the temperature at eye level can rise to a sweltering 600 degrees. Inhaling this super-hot air can scorch your lungs.
  • Fire is dark. Despite what you may see in the movies, actual house fires start out bright, but quickly descend into black smoke and complete darkness. If you wake up to a fire, you may struggle trying to find your way out of a home that you’ve lived in for years.
  • Fire is toxic. The smoke and toxic gases produced by house fires kill more people than the flames do. Fire sucks up the oxygen in the air and produces smoke and poisonous gases, and breathing even small amounts of these toxins can make you drowsy, disoriented and short of breath.

When we truly understand the dangers of fire can we prepare ourselves for survival.  Having a fire escape plan is one of the most important and easiest ways we can prepate.  Here are seven simple steps to creating a plan.

STEP 1: MAP IT OUT
Draw or obtain a map of your home that illustrates all doors and windows.
STEP 2: FIGURE IT OUT
Identify two ways out of every room.
STEP 3: CHECK IT OUT
Make sure the exit doors/windows you’ve identified are in good working order and make for an easy escape.
STEP 4: TALK IT OUT
Agree on a common emergency meeting place in front of your home.
STEP 5: SCOPE IT OUT
Make sure your address can be seen from the street so that first responders know where to go.
STEP 6: SOUND IT OUT
Perform a monthly test on all smoke alarms; make sure everyone in your home can hear the siren, especially when asleep.
STEP 7: TEST IT OUT
Practice your fire escape plan with everyone in your home at least twice a year.

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call Us Today – (847) 983-4468

Why SERVPRO

8/1/2019 (Permalink)

Experience and Compassion are Why SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles Earns High Marks from Customers

Suffering a water, fire, mold, or storm disaster can be a low point in the lives of our Morton Grove/East Niles customers. No one can prepare for the upheaval, worry, cost, and feelings of helplessness that follow a significant loss after an accident or emergency puts your property in harm's way. Working with a reliable mitigation and remediation company goes a long way toward reducing the stress stricken homeowners endure.

Water Damage 

The need for water removal arrives at the most inconvenient times. A phone call takes you away from a filling sink that overflows down the hall to the stairs. The grumbling water heater finally gives up the ghost -- and 50 gallons of sediment-filled liquid fills your utility room while you are at work. Automatic sprinkler systems seem like a time and money saver until they malfunction and run all night and seep mucky water through cracks in your foundation.

When you call SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles for water extraction, do it with the assurance that we have your back. Providing premium water damage management is one of the foundations of our company’s mission, and we strive to exceed your expectations when we take on your project. Expect a speedy response to your call because we know the longer water has to soak into the structural components and contents of your home the more damage that results.

Each water removal job SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles undertakes has a customized workflow developed in response to the individual circumstances at the customer’s residence. We arrive with an Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Reconstruction Certification (IICRC)- crew, certified in multiple specialties to deliver restoration best practices across every task we complete. Powerful, commercial-grade pumps and water extractors are at the ready in our well-stock vehicles. To finish the remediation, the same vehicles hold the air movers, heaters, and dehumidifiers that bring moisture levels in building materials back to normal readings.

Fire Damage 

When an overturned pot or unattended candle causes fire damage in Morton Grove/East Niles that has the potential to race throughout all spaces in your home, your priority is the safety of loved ones and pets. Returning to your house after the firefighters release the property can be a total upending of your expectations of comfort and enjoyment in what was your safe place. Surfaces, furnishings, and personal effects are almost unrecognizable, and you and your family suffer from feelings of despair and enormous loss.

Our SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles family grieves with yours because the first viewing of fire devastation never grows old. Without missing a beat, however, our experienced crew chief begins assessing the situation and mapping out a plan to make sooty, wet chaos “Like it never even happened.” Each crew member jumps to assigned tasks, all the tools, products, and equipment needed with us and ready to battle back.

The tasks common to fire damage mitigation and remediation as performed by our SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles team include the following:

  • Water containment, removal, and disposal following local regulations
  • Burned debris assessment and removal
  • Deep cleaning of charred surfaces with an emphasis on restoring stable surfaces if possible
  • Evaluation of soot characteristics on different surfaces and spaces
  • Ashy soot from hot-burning paper and wood
  • Thick, dark soot that sticks to surfaces from electrical fires and slow smoldering fabrics and padding
  • Protein-based soot from food and grease that adheres like a varnish
  • Matching of the varying soots to appropriate cleaning products, tools, and techniques
  • Loose, ashy soot -- cleared with dry sponges, brushed and HEPA-filtered vacuums
  • Sticky, thickly deposited soot -- cleaning products with wetting agents and surfactants to loosen the bond and agitation to clear the soot away
  • Protein-based soot -- abrasive tools or cleaning products to dislodge and solvents in challenging applications
  • Deodorization after cleaning completes, including the use of special equipment like thermal foggers, hydroxyl generators, and ozone machines


Mold Remediation

Mold remediation in Morton Grove/East Niles reflects the reputable restoration industry’s best practices. Mold spores can never be eliminated, and any company that promises to achieve zero mold spore levels is suspect. Our goal is to remove current mold infestations, use appropriate products to minimize the return of mold colonies and work with our customers to find the sources of moisture responsible for mold growth and arrange for necessary repairs.

SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles crews use a protocol developed by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to locate, contain, and remove mold and materials it infiltrated. The workspace is partitioned off with durable barriers to prevent the spread of moldy material. We create a seal using negative pressure air scrubbing technology, venting the contaminated atmosphere in the moldy space through filters and then to the outside. Remediators wear personal protective equipment (PPE) for safety and to avoid tracking moldy residues through your home.

Mold responds well to mechanical removal -- scrapers and brushes. We vacuum after removal to get all particles using HEPA-filtered machines. Porous material can regain functionality after innovative techniques like soda blasting that deactivates and removes hyphae from structural components. After the visible is cleared EPA-registered antimicrobials treat surfaces. Antimicrobial paint-like sealants also might be appropriate to prepare surfaces for restoration.

Storm Damage

Flooding, roofing and siding fails, and broken windows and doors are all on the menu when Morton Grove/East Niles residents experience storm damage. Heavy rains, winds, and storm surge are the enemy, but our crews are ready to stand with you against the unwanted invasion.

We also provide pre-storm water-related mitigation services when faced with diminished integrity of your home. SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles offers board up and tarping when your roof, windows, siding, and other exterior elements suffer damage. In the aftermath of a severe storm, it is comforting to know that our team, from owners to technicians, are dedicated to customer needs and satisfaction. Caring, compassion, and security are guiding principles we follow at this challenging time in your life.

Feel confident that SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles is on your team as we guide you from catastrophic conditions to “Like it never even happened.” Call for backup at 847-983-4468.

Spring Storms

5/29/2019 (Permalink)

Spring storms strike no matter where you live.  Wind, rain, hail, tornadoes, and flooding can cause costly damage to your home.

Luckily there are ways to prevent potential costly damage to your home.

  1. Clean out gutters and downspouts

Clogged gutters, drains, and downspouts can lead to roof damage during a storm. Dirt and debris can cause water to be unable to flow away from the roofline, adding weight to your roof and potentially causing a roof collapse.

Before the spring storms strike, check your downspouts and gutters to ensure that winter storms haven’t created any blockages. While you’re up there, make sure that all connections are secure and that no repairs are necessary.

  1. Seal your windows, doors, and roof

Check the seals around your doors and windows. Look for loose screws and cracked caulking, and make repairs if necessary. If you live in an area that's prone to heavy storms, consider investing in impact-resistant windows to protect your home.

When you inspect your doors, check that there are three hinges on each to provide additional support. Then, make sure your threshold is screwed directly into your house, as opposed to only your door frame.

Next, inspect your roof. If you find any missing or damaged shingles, an area of sagging, or other damage, have your roof professionally inspected before a storm hits. Repairs can keep your home from experiencing severe damage due to a leaky roof.

  1. Search for cracks in the foundation

Even small cracks in your foundation or basement can put your home at risk of major damage during a spring storm. If water seeps in through the cracks, your home could be in danger of flooding. Furthermore, high winds can make existing cracks prone to widening, causing significant structural damage throughout the home. If you find or suspect any cracks in your foundation or basement, call a professional to seal them to help you prepare for a flood.

  1. Install a backflow valve in your basement to prevent sewage backup

Heavy rain can cause municipal sewers systems to become overtaxed, creating the possibility for excess water to flow backward through your home's sewer lines. Plumbing fixtures situated at the lowest points in your home may be particularly prone to sewer backup. Consider installing a sewer backflow valve to divert unexpected water away from your sewer lines and back to your city's sewage system.

Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today 847-983-4468

Water Damage Cleanup Tips

5/29/2019 (Permalink)

Water Damage Cleanup Tips

When your property is damaged by a flood, burst pipe, or leaky roof, you need an expert in water damage remediation. The professionals at SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles will make it "Like it never happened.” The first thing you should do is call SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles 847-983-4468

There are a few things you should do to minimize the damage to the structure and your belongings before the team arrives:

Assess Safety

Do not enter the damaged area without conducting a safety assessment. Depending on the extent of the damage, it may not be safe for you to enter the building.

  • Water damage can weaken the structural integrity of the building. If the ceilings are sagging, do not enter the building.
  • Be sure the electricity in the building has been shut off. Submerged electrical appliances and electronics can cause serious electrical shock.
  • If the area has been under water for more than 24 hours, wear a surgical mask to avoid inhaling mold spores, or avoid the area until the professionals from SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles arrive.

Keep in mind that the floor will be slippery and objects may have shifted during the flooding. Slip and fall accidents are one of the most common causes of injury in water damage cleanup projects.

Remove Standing Water

If it is safe for you to do so, use a wet-dry vacuum to remove standing water, or use towels to soak up smaller pools of water on furniture, counters, and other surfaces. If the area is flooded with more than a foot or two of water, wait for a professional water damage remediation team to arrive. Removing large amounts of water too quickly will damage the building’s foundation.

Move Furniture, Rugs, and Smaller Items

Remove area rugs from the room and spread them outside to dry. Place aluminum foil or wood blocks under furniture legs to prevent carpet stains. When wood furniture is exposed to excessive moisture, the stain can transfer to the carpet leaving permanent marks. Metal table or chair legs can leave rust stains. Remove smaller items such as books, toys, chairs, and other miscellaneous objects from the area.

Have Water Damage? Call Us Today 847-983-4468

10 Tips to Prevent Mold

7/20/2018 (Permalink)

The following 10 tips are EPA approved and can help you prevent any mold contamination before the spores even think to settle and spread through your home!

1] As soon as a liquid is spilled, no matter the surface, make sure to clean up immediately. Mold most likely will not grow within the first 24-48 hours if moisture is removed.

2] Surround pipes and other cold surfaces with insulation.

3] When looking for a home or to build one, make sure the ground slopes away from the base house to avoid moisture collecting at the foundation.

4] Make sure air conditioning drains are kept clean and flowing properly.

5]
 Keep humidity levels in homes below 60%, preferably between 30% and 50%.

6] Store appliances like stoves and dryers outside where they get plenty of airflow, and vent moisture from collecting inside.

7]
 Be watching for moisture collection. This includes on appliances, windows or any furniture piece.

8]
 Periodically open doors and windows to increase airflow through your home.

9] When showering or bathing be sure to open a window or turn a bathroom fan on.

10]
 Clean and repair roof gutters as often as possible.

If You See Signs of Mold, Call Us Today –847-983-4468

Candle Fires

7/20/2018 (Permalink)

The third most common causes of household fires are candles. The National Fire Protection Agency (NFPA) did a study between 2009 and 2013 where they tracked the number of fires reported each day. On average, 25 candle fires were reported each day during that time. Over the duration of the study, researchers noticed that annually, approximately 86 people die in fires and 827 people are injured each year.

The most common months for candle fires are January and December as they hold the winter holidays. Winter holidays are the most common time for candle fires with December at 12% and January at 10%. Fires during those months peak around Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve, and New Years Day. The reasoning for that is because these holidays are most commonly associated with using candles as part of religious practices or decorations. 20% of these fires started in the living room, family room, or den, while 8% were started in the dining room and 12% started in the kitchen.

Approximately 58% of fires started when flammable materials, such as furniture, mattresses/bedding, curtains, or decorations, were too close to the candle. 18% started when candles were left unattended or abandon. In 11% of the cases, fires started when people fell asleep attributing to 30% of candle fire related deaths. While only around 13% of candle users burn candles in the bedroom, about 36% of fires began in the bedroom.

Now to the fun part, how to prevent candle fires! The obvious, blow the candle you are burning out when you leave the room or go to bed. Also, avoid using candles in the bedroom or other areas where people sleep. Keep candles at least 12 inches away from materials that could burn. Flameless candles are also a safe alternative to burning candles because they look and smell the same.

While burning candles, use sturdy holders that won’t tip easily on uncluttered surfaces. When lighting candles, be sure to keep your hair and loose clothing out of the way. Blow the candle out before it gets too close to the bottom of the holder or container. In other words, don’t burn the candle all the way down. NEVER use a candle if there is an oxygen tank in use in the home. Finally, do not use candles in the event of a power outage, keep plenty of batteries on hand and use flashlights.

If a candle catches fire, not only will you have to deal with the fire burning but the thought of adding water to the mix from extinguishing that fire.

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call Us Today – 847-983-4468

Clothes dryer fire safety

7/20/2018 (Permalink)

Facts about home clothes dryer fires
  • 2,900 home clothes dryer fires are reported each year and cause an estimated 5 deaths, 100 injuries, and $35 million in property loss.
  • Failure to clean the dryer (34 percent) is the leading cause of home clothes dryer fires.
  • More home clothes dryer fires occur in the fall and winter months, peaking in January.

Clothes dryer do’s

Installation

  • Have your clothes dryer installed by a professional.
  • Make sure the correct electrical plug and outlet are used and that the dryer is connected properly.
  • Read manufacturers' instructions and warnings in use and care manuals that come with new dryers.

Cleaning

  • Clean the lint filter before and after each load of laundry. Don’t forget to clean the back of the dryer where lint can build up. In addition, clean the lint filter with a nylon brush at least every six months or more often if it becomes clogged.
  • Clean lint out of the vent pipe every three months.
  • Have your dryer cleaned regularly by a professional, especially if it is taking longer than normal for clothes to dry.

Maintenance

  • Inspect the venting system behind the dryer to ensure it is not damaged or restricted.
  • Put a covering on outside wall dampers to keep out rain, snow and dirt.
  • Make sure the outdoor vent covering opens when the dryer is on.
  • Replace coiled-wire foil or plastic venting with rigid, non-ribbed metal duct.
  • Have gas-powered dryers inspected every year by a professional to ensure that the gas line and connection are together and free of leaks.
  • Check regularly to make sure nests of small animals and insects are not blocking the outside vent.
  • Keep the area around the clothes dryer free of items that can burn.
  • If you will be away from home for an extended time, unplug or disconnect the dryer.

Clothes dryer don’t's

  • Don’t use a clothes dryer without a lint filter or with a lint filter that is loose, damaged or clogged.
  • Don’t overload the dryer.
  • Don’t use a wire screen or cloth to cover the wall damper. They can collect lint and clog the dryer vent.
  • Don’t dry anything containing foam, rubber or plastic. An example of an item not to place in a dryer is a bathroom rug with a rubber backing.
  • Don’t dry any item for which manufacturers' instructions state “dry away from heat.”
  • Don’t dry glass fiber materials (unless manufacturers' instructions allow).
  • Don’t dry items that have come into contact with anything flammable like alcohol, cooking oils or gasoline. Dry them outdoors or in a well-ventilated room, away from heat.
  • Don’t leave a clothes dryer running if you leave home or when you go to bed.

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call Us Today – 847-983-4468

An Office Building Occupants Guide to Indoor Air Quality

7/20/2018 (Permalink)

What You Can Do to Improve the Indoor Air in Your Office:

  • Do not block air vents or grilles.
  • Comply with the office and building smoking policy.
  • Water and maintain office plants properly.
  • Dispose of garbage promptly and properly.
  • Store food properly.
  • Avoid bringing products into the building that could release harmful or bothersome odors or contaminants.
  • Notify your building or facility manager immediately if you suspect an indoor air quality problem.

If You Manage an Office:

  • Maintain a good working relationship with building management on indoor environmental issues.
  • Place office furniture and equipment with air circulation, temperature control, and pollutant removal functions of the heating, ventilating and air conditioning (HVAC) system in mind.
  • Coordinate with building management in instances when responsibility for design, operation and maintenance of the ventilation system is shared.
  • Establish an effective smoking policy that protects nonsmokers from involuntary exposure to secondhand smoke.
  • Avoid procedures and products that can cause indoor air quality problems.
  • Integrate indoor air quality concerns into your purchasing decisions.
  • Work with the building manager to ensure use of only necessary and appropriate pest control practices, and nonchemical methods where possible.
  • Work with building management and the contractor before you remodel or renovate to identify ways of keeping building occupant exposure to pollutants to a minimum and to ensure that the air distribution system is not disrupted.
  • Encourage building management to develop a preventive indoor air quality management program following guidance issued by EPA and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH).

About SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles

SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles 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.

Drain Clog Prevention Tips

7/17/2018 (Permalink)

Having to call your plumber every time a drain in your home gets clogged can become time consuming, frustrating, not to mention very expensive. Your drains may work right now, but clogs can happen at any time. Though plumbing codes, normal plumbing maintenance, and good drain pipe materials can keep the rate of clog formation to a minimum, most people do not have the advantage or the ability to decide what plumbing materials are to be used. No one thinks about plumbing maintenance until there is a clogged drain. Clogged drains can create severe water damage to a home’s structure (such as the wiring) and can be a potential health risk. Problems caused by a clogged drain can be avoided by taking necessary steps of drain maintenance to prevent clogs from occurring. Remember, prevention is not only easy to do, but can save you a lot of money in the long run!

1: When cleaning up after dinner, run hot water through the drain to prevent grease buildup and hard water deposits. Once every few days, to really prevent buildup in your pipes, first put in a half cup of baking soda, followed by a half cup of vinegar, and then wash it through with boiling hot water.

2: Check your bathtub stoppers every three months for hair and buildup of biofilm (a mixture of bacteria, food particles, soap residue, and body oils that hardens as layers begin to build up and lead to a clogged drain) and see if the stopper needs to be replaced due to wear and tear. Once a week, fill the bathtub half way to three-fourths full (while the stopper is in the drain) and then pull out the stopper. The weight and volume of the water will fill the pipe and will flush the drain line.

3: Have your home plumbing system regularly inspected for maintenance. As a preventative measure, once every six months, or once a year, hire a plumber or plumbing technician to snake your home’s drain lines for any buildups that can lead to a clog. For major connections, such as your septic tank or your main pipe to the sewer system, have periodic inspections. Small roots that penetrate a drain pipe can be cleaned up before it turns into a big problem. If regular inspections are not performed by a plumber, the roots can become entrenched in the drain pipe and will have to be replaced altogether. 

4:  Special clog prevention for kitchen sinks include: remove all kitchen waste from sink; do not pour coffee grinds down the sink; do not pour grease down the sink; and catch all food from falling down the sink.

5: Most plumbers will tell you to avoid using chemical-based cleaners as clog prevention on a regular basis as they can corrode metal pipes over time. A natural cleaner is an enzyme/bacteria based cleaner. Once poured down a drain, it creates colonies of good bacteria that destroy bad bacteria that cause clogs in your drains. Use natural-based cleaners at night, just before every one goes to sleep – large amounts of water used after the cleaner can get rid of the good bacteria before it has had time to work.

Need Emergency Service? Call SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles 24/7 – (847) 983-4468

DIY Damage

7/17/2018 (Permalink)

After a heavy rain, flood or burst pipe, you may find yourself wondering how to remove water from your basement. This is a tricky one. You need to get the water out quickly, but there are health and structural issues that need serious consideration. Plus, do you have the equipment to handle the job?

With a lot on the line, we recommend contacting a professional water damage restoration service when you've got water in your basement. Experts, like the ones you'll find at SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles, know how to clean up a flooded basement with the right safety measures and equipment to do the job properly. In this post, we'll explain some of the dangers of a DIY cleanup attempt along with tips on what to do with a flooded basement while you wait on the pros to arrive.

Immediate Steps After a Basement Flood

  • Turn off the power. When your basement fills with water, the first thing to do is safely turn off energy sources around the area. This includes electricity and gas. If you can't do this without going through standing water, stay safe by leaving it to a professional.
  • Wear boots and gloves. It is wise to assume that floodwater can be tainted with sewage or other pollutants. You should keep clear of the area, but if you have to go near the basement for something, cover up. Use waterproof boots and gloves to protect your skin from unpleasant or dangerous stuff in the water.
  • Call your insurance company. Homeowners' policies typically don't cover natural floods, so check with your insurance provider to see what your coverage is. If you live in an area where flooding from natural disasters is common, you should consider adding flood insurance to your policy. Remember – it's never good to find out after the fact that you don't have adequate insurance.

Dangers of a Flooded Basement

There are a number of dangers associated with DIY basement water removal. The average homeowner can easily get in over their head in trying to figure out how to remove water from a basement. Experts will know what to do with a flooded basement to mitigate damage as much as possible and help keep you safe. Watch out for these hazards, which your cleanup crew will know how to handle properly:

  • Graywater or blackwater.This is ground water or rain that swells up and seeps into basements. It's full of ground pollutants, biological agents, bacteria and other hazards to your health. Unclean graywater or blackwater can cause serious illness and must be cleaned up carefully.
  • Electric shock.Submerged appliances or outlets in your basement pose a risk of severe electric shock or even death. Never wade into water where there might be live electricity.
  • Structural rot.Drywall, insulation and beams weaken more and more as they remain underwater, putting the very structure of your home at risk. Only professionals have the right equipment to fully dry out your basement and prevent potentially catastrophic damage from occurring.
  • Buckling walls.Walls can buckle when pressure in the surrounding soil builds up due to oversaturation and improper drainage. An expert will be able to spot the warning signs.

If you experience flooding in your basement, don't let a DIY job put your health and the well-being of your home at risk.

For help restoring your home after a water loss, call SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles  at 847-983-4468. We’ll make it “Like it never even happened.”

“Mold Removal” vs. Remediation

7/17/2018 (Permalink)

Since microscopic mold spores exist naturally almost everywhere, indoors and outdoors, removing all mold from a home or business is impossible. Some restoration businesses advertise “mold removal” and even guarantee to remove all mold. This is a fallacy.

A qualified restoration company understands the science behind mold and mold growth. The professionals at SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles have the training and expertise to remediate the mold in your home or business. Mold remediation focuses on getting mold levels back to normal, natural levels.

Every mold damage scenario is different and requires a unique solution, but the general mold remediation process stays the same.

  • Step 1: Emergency Contact 847-983-4468
  • Step 2: Inspection and Mold Damage Assessment
  • Step 3: Mold Containment
  • Step 4: Air Filtration
  • Step 5: Removing Mold and Mold-Infested Materials
  • Step 6: Cleaning Contents and Belongings
  • Step 7: Restoration

Signs of Mold? Call Today 847-983-4468

Mold Prevention Tips

6/15/2018 (Permalink)

Concerns regarding indoor exposure to mold has increased as the public has become more aware that exposure to mold can cause a variety of health effects and symptoms.   The EPA has come up with the following tips for mold prevention in your commercial property.

  • Fix leaky plumbing and leaks in the building envelope as soon as possible.
  • Watch for condensation and wet spots. Fix source(s) of moisture problem(s) as soon as possible.
  • Prevent moisture due to condensation by increasing surface temperature or reducing the moisture level in air (humidity). To increase surface temperature, insulate or increase air circulation. To reduce the moisture level in air, repair leaks, increase ventilation (if outside air is cold and dry), or dehumidify (if outdoor air is warm and humid).
  • Keep heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) drip pans clean, flowing properly and unobstructed.
  • Vent moisture-generating appliances, such as dryers, to the outside where possible.
  • Maintain low indoor humidity, below 60% relative humidity (RH), ideally 30-50%, if possible.
  • Perform regular building/HVAC inspections and maintenance as scheduled.
  • Clean and dry wet or damp spots within 48 hours.
  • Don't let foundations stay wet. Provide drainage and slope the ground away from the foundation.

If You See Signs of Mold, Call Us Today –847-983-4468

About Our Mold Remediation Services

SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles 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.

Sudden Power Outage

6/15/2018 (Permalink)

Even small storms can cause damage.  The CDC offers these tips to help you prepare for and cope with sudden loss of power:

  • To prevent carbon monoxide poisoning, use generators, pressure washers, grills, and similar items outdoors only. Generators should be used at least 20 feet away from your home.
  • Identify and throw away food that may not be safe to eat.
  • Check with local authorities to be sure your water is safe.
  • In hot weather, stay cool and drink plenty of fluids to prevent heat-related illness.
  • In cold weather, wear layers of clothing, which help to keep in body heat.
  • Avoid downed power lines, if a power line falls on a car, you should stay inside the vehicle.

Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today 847-983-4468

Returning Home

6/15/2018 (Permalink)

After natural disasters such as hurricanes, tornadoes, and floods, be aware that your house may be contaminated with mold or sewage, which can cause health risks for your family.

When You First Reenter Your Home

  • If you have standing water in your home and can turn off the main power from a dry location, then go ahead and turn off the power, even if it delays cleaning. 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 yourself or use an electric tool or appliance while standing in water.
  • Have an electrician check the house’s electrical system before turning the power on again.
  • If the house has been closed up for several days, enter briefly to open doors and windows to let the house air out for awhile (at least 30 minutes) before you stay for any length of time.
  • If your home has been flooded and has been closed up for several days, presume your home has been contaminated with mold.
  • If your home has been flooded, it also may be contaminated with sewage.

If You See Signs of Mold, Call Us Today –847-983-4468

Steps to Prepare for Any Weather Emergency

5/16/2018 (Permalink)

Weather events impact small businesses every day. In fiscal year 2015, the U.S. Small Business Administration provided 46,000 businesses and individuals with $2.8 billion in disaster loans.  No owner wants to believe it could happen to them, but severe weather is an issue no matter where you are located.

Follow these steps to prepare for any weather emergency:

  1. Develop a Plan. How will you manage in the event of a weather disaster? Who is responsible for doing what? What do you need to run your business at a remote site? Stock up on necessary storm supplies, and make sure you can access your data.
  2. Understand Your Coverage.  In addition to property and casualty insurance, talk to your broker about adding business interruption insurance to your business owner’s policy.
  3. Watch the Weather.  Knowing about a storm as soon as possible gives you and your team ample time to prepare for the worst and get as much done as possible. This additional time could be used to make crucial game-changing decisions.  A NOAA weather radio can help, especially for immediate threats like flash floods and tornadoes.

For help restoring your commercial space after a water loss, call SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles at 847-983-4468. We’ll make it “Like it never even happened.”

Create an Emergency Ready Profile(ERP)

5/16/2018 (Permalink)

As many as 50% of businesses close down following a disaster, according to the latest 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. And knowing you are "Ready for whatever happens" speaks trust to your clients and employees that in the event your business is affected by a disaster, they don’t necessarily have to be.

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.

  • 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 SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles 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."

Call Us Today to set up your ERP 847-983-4468

Steps to Take Before a Spring Storm Strikes

5/15/2018 (Permalink)

Spring storms strike no matter where you live.  Wind, rain, hail, tornadoes, and flooding can cause costly damage to your home.

Luckily there are ways to prevent potential costly damage to your home.

1. Clean out gutters and downspouts

Clogged gutters, drains, and downspouts can lead to roof damage during a storm. Dirt and debris can cause water to be unable to flow away from the roofline, adding weight to your roof and potentially causing a roof collapse.

Before the spring storms strike, check your downspouts and gutters to ensure that winter storms haven’t created any blockages. While you’re up there, make sure that all connections are secure and that no repairs are necessary.

2. Seal your windows, doors, and roof

Check the seals around your doors and windows. Look for loose screws and cracked caulking, and make repairs if necessary. If you live in an area that's prone to heavy storms, consider investing in impact-resistant windows to protect your home.

When you inspect your doors, check that there are three hinges on each to provide additional support. Then, make sure your threshold is screwed directly into your house, as opposed to only your door frame.

Next, inspect your roof. If you find any missing or damaged shingles, an area of sagging, or other damage, have your roof professionally inspected before a storm hits. Repairs can keep your home from experiencing severe damage due to a leaky roof.

3. Search for cracks in the foundation

Even small cracks in your foundation or basement can put your home at risk of major damage during a spring storm. If water seeps in through the cracks, your home could be in danger of flooding. Furthermore, high winds can make existing cracks prone to widening, causing significant structural damage throughout the home. If you find or suspect any cracks in your foundation or basement, call a professional to seal them to help you prepare for a flood.

4. Install a backflow valve in your basement to prevent sewage backup

Heavy rain can cause municipal sewers systems to become overtaxed, creating the possibility for excess water to flow backward through your home's sewer lines. Plumbing fixtures situated at the lowest points in your home may be particularly prone to sewer backup. Consider installing a sewer backflow valve to divert unexpected water away from your sewer lines and back to your city's sewage system.

Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today 847-983-4468

Water Damage Prevention Tips

5/15/2018 (Permalink)

Water damage can be extremely costly. What starts as a small leak from your shower stall can turn into tens of thousands of dollars of damage from mold or a collapsed ceiling. As a homeowner, you’ll want to take the following these water damage prevention tips seriously. It could save you both money and a lot of inconvenience.

  1. Examine Ceilings and Walls for Signs of Leaks

It’s easy to get so busy with everyday life that you don’t notice the water stain slowly creeping across your kitchen ceiling, but that water mark is an important indicator that something is leaking. Make note of the location and then check the upper floor or attic of your home, paying special attention to:

  • Cracks in or around tubs or shower stalls
  • Loose or old caulk that pulls up from the seams it should be protecting inside shower stalls
  • Leaking toilets
  • AC lines that collect and drip condensation
  • Improper flashing on your roof around vents or fans

It’s important to find and resolve the source of the leak quickly to minimize damage.

  1. Keep an Eye on Your Water Bill

Leaks are not always obvious; they often occur in hidden places like under slab or in walls. A water bill spike can be the only indicator you see that alerts you to the existence of a leak.

To determine if a spike in your water bill is caused by a leak or something else, take the following steps:

  • Check with family members about water usage.
  • Locate your water meter, Turn off all the water in the house and then check the water meter dial. If the dial is still turning when no water is being uCsed, you might have a broken water meter on your hands, but most likely, you have a leak.
  • Call in the utility company. The utility company will let you know if the problem is a leak or if the problem is the water meter. If the water meter is broken, the utility company will fix it.
  • If it’s not the water meter, you have a leak. Call in a plumber with state-of-the-art leak detection equipment so they can locate and fix the leak.
  1. Know Where Your Water Main Shut Off Valve Is

In case of an emergency, you need to get your water main shut off quickly to limit the amount of water pouring into your home. In most cases, your water main shut off valve is in the garage. Locate it, test it to make sure it is not rusted into position, and then teach everyone in your home how to operate it.

  1. Place Pans Underneath Appliances

Washing machine hoses often wear out long before the washing machine needs any other repairs, making the hoses a prime suspect for leak problems. A ruptured or cracked dishwasher, AC, or washing machine hose can cause major water damage. Protect yourself by placing deep pans underneath appliances so they can capture any water from a leaky hose.

For help restoring your home after a water loss, call SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles  at 847-983-4468. We’ll make it “Like it never even happened.”

Develop Safe Fire Habits

5/15/2018 (Permalink)

If you do nothing else:

  • Keep items that can catch on fire at least three feet away from anything that gets hot, such as space heaters.
  • Smoking materials are the leading cause of residential fire deaths in the United States. If you smoke, take precautions: Smoke outside; choose fire-safe cigarettes; never smoke in bed, when drowsy or medicated, or if anyone in the home is using oxygen.
  • Use deep, sturdy ashtrays and douse cigarette and cigar butts with water before disposal.
  • Talk to children regularly about the dangers of fire, matches and lighters and keep them out of reach.
  • Turn portable heaters off when you leave the room or go to sleep.
  • Never leave a burning candle unattended, even for a minute.

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call Us Today – 847-983-4468

Prevent Kitchen Fires

5/15/2018 (Permalink)

Kitchen fires are preventable

Kitchen fires are the number one cause of house fires.  They are also easily preventable.  Listed here are several recommendations from the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA).

  1. Cooking oil, a key ingredient for frying and sautéing, is also a prime cause of sudden stove-top fires. Smart cooks heat oils slowly to the desired temperature, then add food gently to reduce the chance of splatter and flare-up. Keeping an appropriately sized lid next to your pan gives you a means to quickly cover the pan and snuff out sudden flames.
  2. Good chefs always stay in the kitchen; unattended cooking is a dangerous gamble. Staying in the kitchen, especially when frying, grilling, broiling or boiling, is a smart and obvious way to avoid an out-of-control fire.
  3. Roasting, simmering and baking foods takes more time. While the likelihood of a fire may seem less, the main culprit is forgetting to check on your meal. Set a timer to remind you to check back every so often, and be sure that any wooden utensils, oven mitts, paper products, dish towels and curtains are moved far away from heat sources.
  4. Early morning and late evening cooking coincides with the time you may be more tired. Staying alert is staying safe, so be sure you’re not too sleepy or distracted by other tasks. Consuming alcohol can be enjoyable when preparing meals, but it is also a risk that should be minimized if not completely avoided.
  5. Fight or flight. There is no concrete answer concerning whether it is better to fight a kitchen fire or immediately leave the room, close the door behind you and call for help. If you’re really unsure, take the safest route and call 911 as soon as you and all others can leave the kitchen.

NFPA studies report that 55 percent of the people who were injured in reported nonfatal home cooking fires during 2005-2009 were injured when they tried to fight the fire themselves. One of every four house fires reported in 2007-2011 started with fat or grease, and one of every three fire injuries resulted from these fires.

Source: NFPA’s Fire Analysis & Research Division

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call Us Today – 
847-983-4468

Floods

5/15/2018 (Permalink)

Know your Risk

What

Flooding is a temporary overflowing of water onto land that is normally dry. Flooding may happen with only a few inches of water, or it may cover a house to the rooftop. There are many possible causes of floods including heavy rain or snowmelt, coastal storms and storm surge, waterway overflow from being blocked with debris or ice, or overflow of levees, dams, or waste water systems, Flooding can occur slowly over many days or happen very quickly with little or no warning, called flash floods.

Where

Flooding can happen in any U.S. state or territory. It is particularly important to be prepared for flooding if you live in a low-lying area near a body of water, such as near a river, stream, or culvert; along a coast; or downstream from a dam or levee.

When

Flooding can occur during every season, but some areas of the country are at greater risk at certain times of the year. Coastal areas are at greater risk for flooding during hurricane season (i.e., June to November), while the Midwest is more at risk in the spring and during heavy summer rains. Ice jams occur in the spring in the Northeast and Northwest. Even the deserts of the Southwest are at risk during the late summer monsoon season.

Basic Safety Tips

  • Turn Around, Don’t Drown! ®
  • Avoid walking or driving through flood waters.
  • Do not drive over bridges that are over fast-moving floodwaters. Floodwaters can scour foundation material from around the footings and make the bridge unstable.
  • Just 6 inches of moving water can knock you down, and one foot of moving water can sweep your vehicle away.
  • If there is a chance of flash flooding, move immediately to higher ground.
  • If floodwaters rise around your car but the water is not moving, abandon the car and move to higher ground. Do not leave the car and enter moving water.
  • Avoid camping or parking along streams, rivers, and creeks during heavy rainfall. These areas can flood quickly and with little warning.

Source: READY.gov

Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today 847-983-4468

What's the Difference

5/15/2018 (Permalink)

Spring rains can bring flooding, it is always good to know the difference between a flood watch and a flood warning.

Flood Watch = “Be Aware.” Conditions are right for flooding to occur in your area.

Steps to Take

  • Turn on your TV/radio. You will receive the latest weather updates and emergency instructions.
  • Know where to go. You may need to reach higher ground quickly and on foot.
  • Build or restock your emergency preparedness kit. Include a flashlight, batteries, cash, and first aid supplies.

Prepare Your Home

  • Bring in outdoor furniture and move important indoor items to the highest possible floor. This will help protect them from flood damage.
  • Disconnect electrical appliances and do not touch electrical equipment if you are wet or standing in water. You could be electrocuted.
  • If instructed, turn off your gas and electricity at the main switch or valve. This helps prevent fires and explosions.

Flood Warning = "Take Action!"  Flooding is either happening or will happen shortly.

Steps to Take

  • Move immediately to higher ground or stay on high ground.
  • Evacuate if directed.

Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today 847-983-4468

Fire Safety for Your Business

5/15/2018 (Permalink)

Five key things a business owner needs to know about fire safety to keep their employees, customers, and property safe from fire damage:

  1. Building Fire Exits

If there is a fire, you need to be sure your employees and customers have a way to get out of your building. OSHA requires that all workplace buildings have at least two fire exits that are not located in close proximity to each other that can be used in a fire emergency. This can be a door,  window, or other space large enough for a person to crawl through and access the outdoors.

OSHA also requires that you keep those fire exits clear. The only thing that is allowed to block or    delay the opening of a fire door is an approved alarm system that is part of the fire door’s       design. Also, exit routes from the buildings need to be free of any obstructions. Finally, all exit        routes must be clearly marked with lighted exit signs.

  1. Including Portable Fire Extinguishers

All workplace buildings are required by OSHA to have the proper type of fire extinguisher based    on the type of fire hazards present. For instance, a building with a kitchen will need a fire extinguisher for grease fires, while a building with electrical fire hazards will need one for that purpose. Any employee who is in a position to need to use the fire extinguisher should be properly trained on how to use it.  Once installed, fire extinguishers must be kept in good working order. It is not permissible for fire extinguishers to be left unchecked and untested. Make sure that you follow the recommended testing and inspection schedule from the extinguisher’s manufacture, and document those inspections.

  1. Planning for Emergency Evacuation

Employers should provide written emergency action plans for employees to ensure everyone knows where exit routes are and what fire emergency procedures are in place. Employers and managers need a plan to account for all employees if the building is evacuated. This plan needs to be located somewhere that employees can review it. If your business has physically impaired employees, the plan must include steps to take to evacuate those employees quickly and safely.  As part of this planning, make sure that you properly train your employees on what to do in the event of a fire. Do not assume that common sense will prevail and your employees will know what to do. Provide training and clear policies to be followed in the event of a fire, and review the training every six months to one year.  As part of your plan, host regular fire drills. These allow employees to practice the evacuation procedures when there is no actual emergency. Make sure everyone is accounted for and all proper lockdown procedures are followed during   drills, so your employees will be prepared for an actual fire event.

  1. Planning for Fire Prevention

While having a plan for dealing with emergencies is good, the best plan is to prevent      emergencies altogether. The National Fire Protection Association has a list of fire        prevention regulations and tips that can help your business prevent any dangers that are        common in the line of work you perform. Teach your employees proper fire prevention to ward off an emergency altogether.  Keep in mind that prevention measures will vary depending on    the type of business you run. A welding business is going to need different safety protocols than an office that uses computers for the majority of its work. A kitchen, where open flames are a daily occurrence, is going to have an even more lengthy set of guidelines.

  1. Providing a Fire Suppression System

Finally, OSHA requires fire suppression systems in most workplaces, such as automatic sprinkler      systems. When these systems detect a fire, they automatically spray water and sound the alarm    to help suppress and control the fire while alerting the proper authorities. Like fire               extinguishers, these systems need to be inspected and maintained to ensure they will work properly if a fire occurs.

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call Us Today –847-983-4468

Have a Plan

5/11/2018 (Permalink)

Injuring 36 people in the United States every day and causing over $7 billion in property damage annually, home fires are America’s biggest disaster threat. And while 69% of American parents say that their children would know what to do in a fire, 52% of parents with kids ages 3–17 admit that they haven’t talked to their families about fire safety.

To protect your family it is important to know basic fire facts:

  • Fire is fast. In less than 30 seconds, a small flame can grow completely out of control and turn into a major fire. Most deadly blazes occur in the home while people are sleeping, and upon waking, they have mere seconds to escape.
  • Fire is hot. The heat from a fire is more threatening than the actual flames. In a blazing room, the temperature at floor level can be 100 degrees, while the temperature at eye level can rise to a sweltering 600 degrees. Inhaling this super-hot air can scorch your lungs.
  • Fire is dark. Despite what you may see in the movies, actual house fires start out bright, but quickly descend into black smoke and complete darkness. If you wake up to a fire, you may struggle trying to find your way out of a home that you’ve lived in for years.
  • Fire is toxic. The smoke and toxic gases produced by house fires kill more people than the flames do. Fire sucks up the oxygen in the air and produces smoke and poisonous gases, and breathing even small amounts of these toxins can make you drowsy, disoriented and short of breath.

When we truly understand the dangers of fire can we prepare ourselves for survival.  Having a fire escape plan is one of the most important and easiest ways we can prepate.  Here are seven simple steps to creating a plan.

STEP 1: MAP IT OUT
Draw or obtain a map of your home that illustrates all doors and windows.
STEP 2: FIGURE IT OUT
Identify two ways out of every room.
STEP 3: CHECK IT OUT
Make sure the exit doors/windows you’ve identified are in good working order and make for an easy escape.
STEP 4: TALK IT OUT
Agree on a common emergency meeting place in front of your home.
STEP 5: SCOPE IT OUT
Make sure your address can be seen from the street so that first responders know where to go.
STEP 6: SOUND IT OUT
Perform a monthly test on all smoke alarms; make sure everyone in your home can hear the siren, especially when asleep.
STEP 7: TEST IT OUT
Practice your fire escape plan with everyone in your home at least twice a year.

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call Us Today – (847) 983-4468

Faster to your Morton Grove / East Niles Water Damage Event

3/7/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Morton Grove / East Niles provides 24 hour fire and water damage restoration service in Morton Grove and East Niles.

Flooding and water emergencies don’t wait for regular business hours and neither do we. Morton Grove / East Niles 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 Morton Grove / East Niles 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 – (847) 983-4468

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 Morton Grove / East Niles

SERVPRO of Morton Grove / East Niles 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.

Morton Grove & East Niles Residents: We Specialize in Flooded Basement Cleanup and Restoration!

3/7/2018 (Permalink)

This Morton Grove home’s basement flooded due to heavy rains.

A basement can flood at any time, although flooding most often occurs during heavy rainfall. Basements are inherently prone to flooding because they are the lowest level of a building and are normally built partly or entirely below ground level. There are a number of reasons why your Morton Grove & East Niles basement could flood, including: 

  • A blocked or failed sewer lateral pipe
  • Heavy rain causes surface water to pool around your home
  • Storm sewer backup
  • Sanitary sewer backup
  • Foundation drainage failure
  • Water supply-line break or hot-water tank failure
  • And many more

Have Questions about Basement Flooding?

Call Today - (847) 983-4468

If flood water is not handled quickly and properly, it can jeopardize your health and safety, and cause severe damage to your home’s structure. Remember, the longer you wait, the worse the problem will get.

The bottom line: a flooded basement can jeopardize your health, safety, and your home’s integrity. It’s worth making a call to SERVPRO of Morton Grove / East Niles and let our trained, professional crews handle the situation safely and correctly. We have earned the trust of hundreds of homeowners, business owners, and property professionals.

We are Flooded Basement Specialists:

  • We are Available 24 hours/7 days per week
  • We’re a Preferred Vendor to many National Insurance Companies
  • We Bill The Insurance Directly – One Less Thing For You To Worry About
  • Our Technicians are Highly-Trained  in Water Restoration Techniques
  • We use s500 IICRC Restoration Standards
  • Advanced Inspection and Extraction Equipment

Basement Flooded? Call Us Today – We’re Ready To Help (847) 983-4468

Morton Grove & East Niles Residents: Follow These Mold Safety Tips If You Suspect Mold

3/7/2018 (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 Morton Grove / East Niles 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 Morton Grove / East Niles 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 – (847) 983-4468

Morton Grove & East Niles Residents: Follow These Mold Safety Tips If You Suspect Mold

3/7/2018 (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 Morton Grove / East Niles 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 Morton Grove / East Niles 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 – (847) 983-4468

Conditions In Morton Grove & East Niles Might Be Right For Mold

3/7/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Morton Grove / East Niles knows what to do if mold grows in your home.

It’s estimated that more than 1 million types of mold exist, yet less than 10 percent have actually been named. This means mold is very common in both indoor and outdoor environments. While mold and humans can sometimes co-exist without issue, there are certain species of mold that can cause health effects for some people.

If the right conditions exist, mold will grow.  Those conditions include:

  • Water - Different mold types require varying amounts of liquid before growth begins.   
  • Temperature - Normal indoor temperatures will promote mold growth.
  • Time - Initial mold colonizers can take hold within one day after being exposed to an adequate water supply.

Mold growth can occur in any home, so it’s important to keep an eye out for situations that might promote mold activity. Roof/chimney leaks, wet basements, or condensation from ducts that dampen surrounding insulation are just a few examples of issues that make a house a prime target for mold growth.

If you suspect mold in your home, call SERVPRO of Morton Grove / East Niles to assess the situation. We have the knowledge, tools and track record to effectively remediate mold in your home or business.

If you suspect mold, call us today at (847) 983-4468

What to Do:

  • Stay out of affected areas.
  • Turn off the HVAC system and fans.
  • Contact SERVPRO of Morton Grove / East Niles for mold remediation services.

When Storms or Floods hit Morton Grove or East Niles, SERVPRO is ready!

3/7/2018 (Permalink)

Our highly trained crews are ready to respond 24/7 to storm or flood damage in Morton Grove & East Niles.

SERVPRO of Morton Grove / East Niles 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 Morton Grove & East Niles, 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 Click Here that are strategically located throughout the United States.

Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today (847) 983-4468

Morton Grove / East Niles 24 Hour Emergency Water Damage Service

3/6/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Morton Grove / East Niles provides 24 hour fire and water damage restoration service in Morton Grove / East Niles.

SERVPRO of Morton Grove / East Niles 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 - (847) 983-4468

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 Morton Grove / East Niles 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 Morton Grove / East Niles

SERVPRO of Morton Grove / East Niles 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.

Does Your Morton Grove or East Niles Home Have A Mold Problem?

3/6/2018 (Permalink)

In Morton Grove & East Niles, 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 Us Today – (847) 983-4468

Morton Grove / East Niles Smoke and Soot Cleanup

3/6/2018 (Permalink)

Smoke and Soot Damage Can Cause a Pervasive Odor in Your Morton Grove or East Niles 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 Morton Grove / East Niles 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 – (847) 983-4468

Restoring Your Morton Grove / East Niles Commercial Property After A Water Damage Event

3/6/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial Water Damage Events Present Unique Challenges

Flooding and water damage events at Morton Grove and East Niles 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 Morton Grove / East Niles

SERVPRO of [Morton Grove / East Niles 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.

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