Ask The Experts: Things You Can Do To Prevent Frozen Pipes
The cold weather is upon us, and with cold weather comes the threat of frozen pipes! Below are several things you can do to help prevent frozen pipes and the water damage that comes with them.
- Drain water from swimming pool and water sprinkler supply lines following manufacturer's or installer's directions. Do not put antifreeze in these lines unless directed. Antifreeze is environmentally harmful and is dangerous to humans, pets, wildlife, and landscaping.
- Remove, drain, and store hoses used outdoors. Close inside valves supplying outdoor hose bibs. Open the outside hose bibs to allow water to drain. Keep the outside valve open so that any water remaining in the pipe can expand without causing the pipe to break.
- Add insulation to attics, basements, and crawl spaces. Insulation will maintain higher temperatures in these areas.
- Check around the home for other areas where water supply lines are located in unheated areas. Look in the garage, and under kitchen and bathroom cabinets. Both hot and cold water pipes in these areas should be insulated.
- Consider installing specific products made to insulate water pipes like a "pipe sleeve" or installing UL-listed "heat tape," "heat cable," or similar materials on exposed water pipes. Newspaper can provide some degree of insulation and protection to exposed pipes.
- Consider relocating exposed pipes to provide increased protection from freezing.
Should your pipes freeze, or should disaster strike your business or home in any other way, give the professionals at SERVPRO a call! We are faster to any disaster and are here to help get you back to "Like it never even happened."
SERVPRO Can Assist With Flood Damage
The primary concern for a homeowner after a natural disaster is to restore their property as quickly as possible. Flooding is not uncommon and can cause havoc in the lower levels of your property. Removing that water needs to be done quickly to limit losses. As a rule of thumb, the longer water is allowed to saturate structure, structural components, or personal possessions the more likely permanent damage is to occur.
When flood damage in Oak Lawn properties occurs, you need to know that your restoration provider can mobilize equipment quickly. SERVPRO uses local technicians and provides them with the tools from our nearby warehouse. As a company with access to national resources, our water extraction equipment is top of the range and capable of dealing with any size disaster.
The quickest way to remove standing water is by a gas-powered submersible pump. These are linked to an open sewer point which allows us to remove an unlimited amount of floodwater. However, if your home relies on a septic tank, a gas-powered pump cannot be deployed. Your SERVPRO technician can quickly use other measures if this is the case.
A practical solution when pumps are not possible to deploy are extraction units. For large amounts of water, SERVPRO can bring in truck-mounted extractors. These industrial equipment are capable of removing more than 100 gallons of water before needing to be emptied and minimize the risk of damages to carpets, fittings, or upholstery.
Where flooding is deemed as less severe, we use portable extractors. Fabrics can be up to 50% weaker when wet so a deft approach can be useful in mitigating loss, particularly on carpets. These are comprised of a vacuum element used in combination with heat. Your technician can repeatedly use an extractor over the surface without risking damages and ensuring your home dries quicker than with dehumidifiers or rapid air-movers.
For fast response to a home emergency, contact SERVPRO of Oak Lawn today at 708-239-1444
Fire Damage Can Happen Any Time Of The Year
While hotter summer temperatures increase fire damage risk in Oak Lawn homes relative to the other seasons, plenty can still go wrong around the home that might lead to a fire, even in the deepest winter months. With enough fuel and oxygen, fires can burn even in the coldest conditions, and even when the air is relatively humid. Here are a few typical ways fires may start in local homes this winter and early spring season.
In the 21st century, one of the most prominent sources of home damage is fire damage in Oak Lawn from electrical mishaps. As our homes fill with ever-increasing numbers of gadgets, devices, and appliances, more and more electrical fires occur each year. Although newer electronics are usually safer and less fire-prone than older devices, the sheer number of them present in most modern households means that disaster of some sort can often be an inevitability. Water cannot often extinguish an electrical fire, and many electrical fires are in fact caused by contact with a water source. Always use a chemical or foam-based fire extinguisher in these emergencies.
American kitchens remain the most consistent points of origin of large house fires across the country. In the typical kitchen, setting can be found multiple heating appliances, electronic devices, and sources of an open flame. Any of these can be prone to malfunction or user error and start a fire. Be sure to equip your kitchen with at least one well-placed smoke detector and check its batteries on a semi-regular basis.
It is cold outside, and those with a hearth may be inclined to use it in the earliest and latest months of the year. While fireplaces can be a great addition to the room and source of extra warmth, they also carry a great deal of risk with them. Always treat a fireplace with caution, and consider adding a barrier of some sort in front of its flame for added safety.
SERVPRO of Oak Lawn is ready 24/7 to respond to calls of fire damage in the area. Contact us (708) 239-1444.
Water Removal In Your Chicago Ridge Home
Many of the materials used to renovate a Chicago home arrive from various distances. Some items need to adjust to the Windy City’s climate, especially the amount of moisture these materials contain. Accidents and mishaps do happen, and when these involve water from a broken water line or a slipped tarp that lets in rain, getting these dry again can save your investment while reducing changes to the schedule.
This is only one reason why homeowners in Chicago Ridge might need water removal services at their residence. There are many other situations where the interior of a residence might become damp, wet, or even flooded. SERVPRO is always ready to assist property owners in the area with all of these. No job is ever too large, overly complicated, or too small.
We arrive in our Green Fleet, which we keep stocked with the disposable items needed during most jobs, as well as the equipment and machines used during water removal and drying tasks. We also carry the diagnostic tools that help us locate migrated water, slightly damp materials, hidden water, and leaks, as well as determine the moisture contained in affected materials. We compare initial baselines to readings taken later, during the water removal and drying process, so we know the effectiveness of our machines.
Different variables can change the rate at which materials dry. The material itself can make drying out slower, as can cooler temperatures and a lack of air currents. Damp air can also make water removal take longer. We change these conditions to gain optimal drying rates.
Additional equipment, including our pump trucks, help us extract any standing water that might exist in your house. A smaller amount of water also needs to be removed. This can happen quickly with portable units that we attach to the pump truck or to another container to receive the water.
When we locate water, trapped inside walls, or other enclosed locations, we remove this with small drain holes made in inconspicuous or hidden locations. Forcing these locations full of warm, dry air, with another opening to allow for venting, gets these locations dry.
When materials need to have excess moisture or water removed, we can build an enclosure called a drying chamber, around them. We use the same equipment in a similar manner with these chambers. We also monitor the materials to ensure they do not become overly dry, as this can also cause problems.
Call SERVPRO of Oak Lawn today (708) 239-1444 and we can help your home recover from any accident that left things wet. Water removal takes much less time than air-drying alone and provides much better results.
What To Do After Sewer Backup In Your Chicago Ridge Business
As your commercial building in Chicago Ridge ages, pipes get older as well, and sewer lines can get backed up. Plus, employees usually do not treat facilities at work with the same amount of car as they would in their own home. Even though commercial sewer lines are made to withstand more wear and tear, they can still clog and back up. You have a staff who counts on you for a safe working environment, so if a sewer line does get backed up, acting quickly is essential.
When it comes to damage to your sewer lines in your business, time is of the essence. You need commercial water removal services as soon as possible before additional damage can occur. At SERVPRO, our staff has gone through extensive training and certification to do the job for you and do it right. We are available any time, day or night, and ensure that we return your business to its usual, safe working environment.
City sewer lines have what is known as Category 3 water, which is very hazardous to anyone who comes into contact with it. It can contain microbes, bacteria, and other microorganisms that can severely damage not only the health of you, your employers, and your customers, but can also damage the indoor air quality.
SERVPRO techs understand the dangers present with this kind of water damage, and we wear the correct protective gear to ensure the safety of our workers during restoration. We also have the right equipment and tools to remediate the areas affected quickly. SERVPRO understands that every minute you are closing costs you money, so we act fast to help you out.
When we arrive at your site, we evaluate the damages and then communicate the plan for cleanup with you before we begin any work. We can quickly return your building to safe conditions and let you and your employers get back to work.
SERVPRO of Oak Lawn works quickly to take care of the sewer backup in your business. Give us a call today (708) 239-1444.
SERVPRO Can Help After A Storm
We can never really comprehend the volume of water that is shed from the structures we inhabit until storm damage opens a portion of it to the elements. This type of catastrophe must have a swift, professional response. Hiring a company like SERVPRO that specializes in flood damage and overall disaster remediation is the key to a successful outcome.
Here is a typical storm damage scenario: torrential rains and high winds buffet your home for hours. Nearby tree limbs fall, break windows and cause a corner of the roof to collapse. The breach allows water to rush in through your attic and to the floors below, leaving you with flood damage throughout your Oak Lawn home. As the storm begins to weaken, you realize the safety of your family and the structure of your house require a professional response. Leaving even a portion of your home open to the elements risks more water damage, invasion by pests, or unauthorized personnel.
SERVPRO can meet your immediate need to temporarily secure and protect the storm-damaged structure, and prevent further damage or unauthorized entry with board-up and roof tarping services. Then the process of mitigating and remediating the interior can begin.
Expect the SERVPRO team to take the time to create a firm plan outlining all the jobs that must be completed to prepare your home for re-construction. Standing water on every level of your home must be pumped out or extracted with powerful vacuums. The majority of the water collects in the basement or lowest level, so immediate attention focuses there, but SERVPRO's properly prepared and trained technicians examine every inch of the dwelling for flood damage.
Following the removal of the water, SERVPRO's certified workers take moisture measurements of structures, air, and possessions as a post-disaster baseline. Drying goals shortly emerge from their skilled computations, and the recovery spotlight now shines on achieving appropriate moisture levels to minimize permanent damage to wood, metal, and fibers, among other things. Commercial air movers and low grain refrigerant dehumidifiers are precisely placed where needed to dry out the structure, flooring, floor coverings, walls, ceilings, and belongings.
Contact SERVPRO of Oak Lawn for your flood damage needs. Hiring a competent and well-seasoned remediation team is only a call to (708) 239-1444 away.
SERVPRO Acts Fast To Save Your Furnishings After Flood Damage
No matter where you live, you should not ever think that you are completely safe from flooding. Even in Oak Lawn, heavy rains can cause area floodwaters that can enter your home and uproot your daily life. It can happen fast like in the case of flash floods or give you more warning as waters in the area slowly rise before overflowing their banks.
No matter how the floodwaters came into your home in Oak Lawn, the flood damage left in their wake can be devastating. The longer the water sits in your home, however, the more damage is done. Knowing whom to call ahead of time in a disaster like this is essential in salvaging your home. Our staff at SERVPRO are ready to help you anytime you need us.
One thing that is likely affected in your home from the flooding is upholstered furniture. Several problems happen when water affects upholstery. Framing is made of wood and is subject to swelling and cracking. The framing joints weaken from this, plus water can cause glues to break down, creating damage to the furniture.
If the fabric is dry-clean-only, spotting from the water can occur. The whole piece of furniture may need wetting to avoid water lines. Often, dust covers on furniture also bleed when wet, and if it sags, it can stain your flooring or carpeting. Upholstered buttons have metal backs that rust and also cause staining. SERVPRO staff can follow spot removal procedures in these cases. We also keep in mind that wooden furniture legs can stain carpeting and that once dry, the stains are almost impossible to remove, so we attempt to clean the stains while it is wet.
Mold growth can also be an issue, so we use dehumidifiers and air movers to dry everything rapidly. The furniture stains are all treated first, and we also wet the whole piece if needed. Furniture is extracted with the right extractor and an upholstery tool, and zippers and buttons are dried to avoid rust. We put wax paper between the zipper and cushion to prevent the transfer of rust, and furniture pads around metal buttons. We also tent cushions and place air movers and dehumidifiers as we need to.
SERVPRO of Oak Lawn carefully dries out your furniture when your home floods so that everything possible is salvaged. Call us right away at (708) 239-1444 when you experience flooding so we can help you avoid additional damage.
Removing Odors After A Fire
Whether it is big or small, a fire burning inside your Oak Lawn home is never a pleasant situation. Flames and heat burn contents and building materials. Smoke possibly flows throughout the building leaving behind soot residues and foul odors.
After a burn, one of the last and most important steps is to remove all pungent odors that get left behind. Oak Lawn's fire damage technicians at SERVPRO follow four steps when deodorizing a structure. First, we remove the source, then we clean, recreate, and seal.
Deodorization after a blaze sometimes gets complicated since foul odors usually have more than one type of source. In some situations, multiple methods must be used to remove odors, but the four steps still get followed. To start with, our team always removes the source of the odor. Any debris that got severely burnt and is smelling pungent gets discarded from the area.
Awful smells inside a home often come from soot residues that adhere to surfaces after a fire. If smoke smells still exist after removing all burnt items, then most likely the source is the odor-causing residues sticking to surfaces in different rooms of the condo. Our restoration crews follow the smoke and make sure to clean all areas that soot is present.
If horrible smells still exist after cleaning, then odor particles penetrated deep into contents and building materials inside the structure. The best way to remedy this problem is to recreate the same conditions odor particles stuck to the materials by using a chemical fogger. Sometimes this step gets skipped if it is not needed.
In many scenarios, odors get eliminated by just removing the source and cleaning soot residues. If the first two steps do not work, fogging is the next option then the last step is to seal. Our experts often seal surfaces that get exposed to malodors. In some cases, we paint over walls or wooden studs with specialized sealant paint.
After deodorization, we do a final cleaning process that sometimes involves adding pleasant odors to the air. For professional help with the restoration process, call SERVPRO of Oak Lawn (708) 239-1444.
Keeping Your Business Ready for Customers After Water Damage
Providing the best for your customers requires a clean environment and an inviting atmosphere. When your business has suffered from water damage it can deter customers from affecting your bottom line. SERVPRO can help remove water-damaged materials so your business can stay open and on schedule. We also provide the services needed to restore your business after the damage takes place, ensuring that it once again looks “Like it never even happened,” and preserving your trademark look.
Trained, so they receive IICRC certifications, our technicians soon gain hands-on experience in every stage of restoration work. We do more than just the tear-outs and removal of materials. We also make sure that your establishment is ready to serve customers again. We know you must pass various inspections during the year and can help make sure water damage does not pose any obstacles.
Our Floor Care (Hard Surfaces) Technician (FCT) makes sure that often overlooked areas receive the care and attention they require. Different flooring throughout your business can suffer from water damage in different ways. Carpeting can stretch and develop loose areas, while hardwood floors can warp and splinter, creating trip and fall hazards. Linoleum and tile can become loose and begin to disintegrate.
SERVPRO of Oak Lawn is a service dedicated to helping other local businesses remain strong assets to our local economy. Whenever water damage or other problems develop at your business call us for 24-hour services at (708) 239-1444.
Water Damage From A Sink Overflow
A sink that overflows can create just a small amount of water damage if it is caught quickly. However, if it is unchecked for several hours, the results can be devastating. It is one of those human errors that are seemingly small, but that can lead to huge consequences. Plus, if the overflow occurs on an upper level of your residence, you can easily wind up with a total home water loss.
It is important that water restoration begins as soon as possible to prevent further damage to your home. SERVPRO can help. We have the training and experience required to get your home back to its preloss condition.
Water from your sink is safe for consumption. Therefore, there are not many bacteria that can cause harm right away. The threat, however, develops if a fair amount of time passes before you have the water cleaned up. Temperature and time let bacteria and mold grow and thrive, which heightens the contamination and water damage. Our technicians check your home for hidden moisture or mold growth once we have all the standing water cleaned up.
We also communicate with your insurance company, so it is a worry that you do not have to handle on your own. Instead, you can focus on your family and their needs while we take care of getting the coverage that you deserve.
If you have water damage in your home call us today (708) 239-1444.