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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Archived Blog Posts

Home Fire Safety Best Practices Part 1

3/4/2021 (Permalink)

No one plans on an accident or an emergency! If they do occur though, the age-old saying "if you fail to plan then you plan to fail" is so true!  If your home caught on fire today, would your family know what to do? If the answer is no, we have some tips to help change that.  Everyone in your family should be involved and know what to do in case of an emergency. If you need us, we will be there to help you clean up after a fire, but it is our hope that by implementing some of these fire safety practices in your home, you may not need us! 

  • Create a fire escape plan and practice the steps. 
  • Try to identify at least two ways you can exit each room in case there is a fire. 
  • Regularly replace batteries in your smoke detectors and test them to make sure they are working properly.
  • Smoke alarms in the home should be replaced as needed. 
  • Check your fire extinguisher for corrosion, or any changes in the pressure gauge.  It should be in an easily accessible location. 

If a fire occurs in your home, the first priority is for you and your family to get out and call for help.  

If you need assistance with fire or smoke damage in your home call us today (708)239-1444. 

Home Fire Best Practices Part 2

3/4/2021 (Permalink)

If fire hits your home or business, it won't call to set an appointment! In fact, it will often come at an inopportune time and you will not be ready for what all comes at you. Today we will discuss the second half of our fire safety best practices list! We hope it gives you good information that you will use in your home and that it might even prevent a fire!

  • Don't overload an electrical outlet and look for any frays or tears in electrical cords. 
  • Never leave a burning candle unattended.
  • Before starting a fire in the winter, have your fireplace inspected.
  • Do not leave a kitchen oven unattended and make sure it is off before you leave the house. 
  • Never use a generator indoors.
  • Use extreme caution when using space heaters in the winter. 

If disaster does strike, give us a call! We are faster to any disaster and will get you back to "Like it never even happened."

Ask The Experts: How Do I Know If It Is Mold?

3/2/2021 (Permalink)

Is that mold in the corner? What about on the tile in your shower? Should you be concerned? 

Regular housekeeping and maintenance in your commercial building may include an everyday checklist of tasks-keeping bathrooms stocked, ensuring that garbage is properly disposed, and keeping things presentable and tidy. Does the checklist include checking all the nooks and crannies of the building where mold may grow? It is important to be proactive by checking areas that are not obvious for mold growth. 

1. Walls and Ceilings 

Walls can harbor mold both on the surface and internally. Check behind items that are pushed up against walls. Also, check ceilings and masonry such as bricks. These call all be the perfect areas for mold to thrive and multiply. 

2. HVAC and Air Ducts

Humid temperatures circulating through dark spaces in HVAC systems and air ducts can create condensation. This can create the perfect environment for mold growth

3. Unoccupied Rooms

Empty offices or areas that are closed up and not used or occupied on a regular basis should be checked at least once a week. There may not be adequate air circulation if vents are closed. 

If you suspect you have mold in your commercial building, call us today (708) 239-1444 we can come out and do a free inspection. We are faster to any disaster and are ready to send mold packing and get you back to "Like it never even happened."

Why choose SERVPRO of Oak Lawn when it comes to mold?

3/2/2021 (Permalink)

When it comes to mold, you should never try and go it alone. The professionals at SERVPRO are trained mold damage specialists who get started quickly to get your home or business back to normal, with specific training and certifications to handle your restoration needs.

  • Applied Microbial Remediation Specialist
  • Water Damage Restoration Technician
  • Applied Structural Drying Technician

We also invest in the latest equipment and ongoing mold remediation training because it helps us restore your home or business quickly and effectively. We will isolate the affected area using physical barriers and a negative air pressure chamber.

If you suspect you have mold in your commercial building, call us today (708) 239-1444 we can come out and do a free inspection. We are faster to any disaster and are ready to kick mold to the curb and get you back to "Like it never even happened."

If Your Pipes Freeze, SERVPRO of Oak Lawn Is Here For You!

2/9/2021 (Permalink)

Many different things can go wrong that can cause your pipes to freeze, but at the end of the day, the result is really the same; a disaster that you don't need, don't want, and don't have time for! Chicagoland is known for extreme temps, and with extreme temps comes the real possibility of your pipes freezing. Check out this article on several ways that your pipes could end up freezing, and if disaster does strike, don't go it alone! Call the professionals at SERVPRO of Oak Lawn. We are faster to any disaster and will make things "Like it never even happened."

https://www.builderonline.com/building/building-science/three-frozen-pipe-scenarios-and-what-went-wrong-in-each_o

Ask The Experts: Things You Can Do To Prevent Frozen Pipes

11/20/2020 (Permalink)

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

10/6/2020 (Permalink)

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

10/5/2020 (Permalink)

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.

Electrical Fires
 
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.

Cooking Disasters
 
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.
 
Fireplaces
 
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

10/5/2020 (Permalink)

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

8/19/2020 (Permalink)

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

8/6/2020 (Permalink)

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

8/5/2020 (Permalink)

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

8/3/2020 (Permalink)

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

7/27/2020 (Permalink)

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

7/23/2020 (Permalink)

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.

Storm Damage Restoration In Oak Lawn

7/23/2020 (Permalink)

When storms and heavy rains cause damage to properties, flooding becomes a significant risk. Leaking roofs, blocked gutters, cracked pipes, and downed trees can all cause major problems for homeowners. This is not like regular water damage either, as storms are categorized as severe and require urgent restoration work from the experts.

Category III water damage is potentially hazardous, as it contains dirt, debris, bacteria, and possibly chemicals. If a storm puts pressure on sewer lines, for example, they may back up and flood the house. If this happens bacteria, and other toxins will contaminate soft furnishings, walls, and ceilings. This is why storm damage in Oak Lawn homes is such a stressful process. Sometimes, the only option is to destroy heavily soiled items. This is the last resort, however, and the experts at SERVPRO can use many different techniques to salvage your possessions. Keep reading to find out more about the items that we rescue on a regular basis.

Porous Materials
These are the hardest items to clean after storm damage has contaminated them. If the water intrusion is severe and rugs, carpets, sofas, or other soft furnishings have become completely saturated; they may need to be destroyed. If we cannot thoroughly dry and clean them, in a way that eliminates the bacteria, it is safer to remove them permanently.

There are numerous things that we can do before getting to this point. Most carpets can be ‘floated’ and dried, by lifting the material a few inches from the ground. High powered fans or air movers are then inserted beneath the carpet and used to circulate clean air. Often, curtains and drapes can be washed with biocides, so that the bacteria is killed off.

Structural Components/Décor
In very severe cases, when storm damage has caused extensive flooding, portions of the drywall and flooring may need to be discarded and replaced. The SERVPRO team can advise you on the next best steps if this is deemed necessary. Where stormwater has intruded only moderately, there will be stains on the bottom of the walls. These can usually be cleaned with detergents and biocides.

industrial strength cleaning products and disinfectants are a good way to make sure that damp walls and ceilings don’t grow mold. If this happens, they’ll become a lot harder to salvage, as mold eats away at wood, drywall, and fabrics.

If you are dealing with storm damage and need help right away call us today (708) 239-1444

What Should I Do After A Fire?

7/23/2020 (Permalink)

A fire in your home can be devastating. You may have lost possessions, property, pets, or even loved ones. This can be a difficult and trying time for you and your family. The last thing that you want to do is to create more damage or make your situation worse by using amateur cleaning and restoring methods. Though well-meaning, these solutions are temporary fixes and may make the damage worse. 

Steps to Take after a Fire 

1. After your fire damage in Oak Lawn call your insurance company right away. 

2. Call a fire damage restoration company 

3. Try to ventilate the building as much as possible 

4. Remain outside of the building or at a safe location if possible 

5. Develop a plan of action for moving forward 

6. Stay in contact with the company you hired 

A Quick Response 

When you have big or small fire damage,  call a highly trained professional company that responds day or night quickly. From small fires to major blazes, a fire damage restoration company can remediate all of your fire damage problems and restore your home or business safely and efficiently. 

Can smoke odors be removed? 

You can become sickened by smoke and soot odors if they are left untreated. Only commercial treatment products by trained experts should be used to treat and remove smoke and smoke odor damage. Don't try to remove it with a home method. These methods could make the damage worse. It may cost you additional later to pay for a professional to undo the damage you caused by trying to clean it up. 

What about water damage? 

Fire damage can also lead to water damage. After the extinguishing efforts, water damage can be left behind. Experts in fire damage restoration know that water damage must be remediated quickly. For your fire damage needs, you need a trusted reliable company that can address this damage immediately. 

Call SERVPRO of Oak Lawn today (708) 239-1444 we are here to help!

Water Damage Can Mean Lost Money For Your Business

7/23/2020 (Permalink)

When a commercial property suffers from a flooding issue, the business loss isn't just measured in how much water is standing in a manager's office or covering a showroom floor. Every minute that the doors aren't open for customers is lost income and opportunity to grow that business.

Consider this; flooding on a commercial property usually happens (and isn't noticed) overnight. When your manager or employees arrive to open up, that's when they find the problem. This day and its profits are already lost. To even have a chance to reopen the next day or the one after that, you need to get a professional from SERVPRO in your workplace immediately to find and close off the source of the damage.  if you have done so, that will mitigate the secondary water damage and increase the speed of drying out the business.  Our team of trained IICRC certified technicians begins cleanup within the quickest time possible, often within the hour. 

Many state and local laws require that walking areas affected be completely dried off before allowing employees and customers to return. It's a matter of both health and safety issues. If your business can show that there is no other damage that puts either group at risk, then an inspector will gladly allow you to start serving and supporting customers again.

Getting the doors reopened, even if the water damage is minor, can be a huge benefit for a business today. If you have suffered water damage in your business call us (708) 239-1444. 

SERVPRO Can Dry Out Your Oak Lawn Residence

7/22/2020 (Permalink)

Leaking can occur for several reasons, from poor insulation for the plumbing in your Oak Lawn home to exterior damage on the connection points. Persistent leaks might not flood your house, but they do require immediate attention to prevent the situation from getting worse.

Water damage to Oak Lawn homes that exist in ceiling structural cavities must get addressed using controlled demolition tactics and drying equipment. With an in-house roster of contractors, our SERVPRO team can provide real-time, minimalistic demolition was necessary to grant access to saturated materials in the ceiling assemblies and access to the compromised portions of the pipe.

What can you expect when our professionals arrive at your water-damaged home?

    •    Fast and confident action to make real-time drying decisions
    •    Advanced technologies and equipment to extract water and dry materials
    •    Experienced contractors to rebuild after restoration.

Water damages can be destructive to your home, but SERVPRO of Oak Lawn can help. Give us a call today (708) 239-1444. 

Commercial Water Damage Restoration

7/20/2020 (Permalink)

Take the proper steps in removing water from your business by trusting a locally owned and operated industry leader to perform the water extraction process. We have the equipment and experience available to do the job right the first time and return your property to a quality pre-damage condition.

Our technicians can efficiently remove water caused by floods or leaks on your property. We'll go out of our way to ensure proper removal of any moisture that may affect your merchandise that is stored by responding quickly and assisting you with getting operations back to normal as fast as possible. Our SERVPRO technicians have the training and experience needed to put our quality equipment to work immediately to tackle your large commercial flooding or water damage emergency. We work hard to mitigate the damage and manage your entire restoration process.

SERVPRO highly recommends that you remain safe while waiting for our expertly trained staff to arrive. Pay specific attention to possible electrical, or slip & fall hazards that may be present at the site. Never perform any activities that may be unsafe, wet materials are far heavier than you think they are; be careful.

The faster SERVPRO receives a call from you, the better chances we'll have to mitigate the damages to your commercial property and any stock that you may have on hand. We use specialized equipment to find hidden water and advanced drying techniques to ensure everything receives the proper drying time. We also use air moving equipment to help reduce drying time and eliminate moisture from the air with dehumidifiers. These processes assist with removing and absorbing moisture from wet materials and enhance evaporation at the surface levels.

Within eight hours of our onsite arrival, you will have a complete understanding of the scope of work that is required to restore your property and we'll have started to regain control of your property efficiently. We always provide you with a complete final walk-through to ensure your satisfaction with the job performed.

Call SERVPRO of Oak Lawn today (708) 239-1444.

Fire Cleanup In Chicago Ridge

7/20/2020 (Permalink)

Many folks today take on tasks as do-it-yourself projects, learning from videos and classes at home improvement stores. Although a DIY approach works for many minor remodeling jobs, landscaping, and the like, fire damage recovery is a job for trained experts. The staff at SERVPRO have the education, experience, and equipment to restore your home safely and completely after a fire.

After a fire damages your Chicago Ridge home, it is crucial that all steps deemed necessary by the restoration industry be completed fast. The longer fire damage stands without abatement, the more likely it is that permanent harm to structures, contents, and air quality may make part or all of a home dangerous to inhabit. Our team trains to the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) standards, the benchmarks for safe and efficient procedures to return your home to preloss condition.

Our staff react within hours of your call and arrive with all equipment and specialized products necessary onboard our full-service trucks. SERVPRO sends a crew large enough to begin and complete a full-scale fire damage cleanup swiftly before the acid residues of ashes and soot deteriorate building structures, fixtures, and your belongings. The technicians assess for safety first and then design a comprehensive plan that includes cleaning, sealing, and odor removal. Often both chemical and water damage from the firefighting efforts are part of the restoration package. Some structures may be too charred to be restored, and decisions to remove and replace need evidence transmitted to your insurance company to limit your out of pocket costs. We work with you and your insurer.

The technicians we send are proficient in the use of professional-grade equipment, certified and experienced. A homeowner trying to accomplish the same with rental steamers or carpet cleaners risks making the situation even worse. SERVPRO employees also assess hidden areas, such as your HVAC system and recesses between and behind walls, under floors, and above ceilings for damage.

Odor elimination is a particularly complex skill set. Covering up with air fresheners is ineffective and deludes you temporarily that all necessary cleanup is complete. SERVPRO has odor elimination specialists on staff who use a range of strategies to neutralize odors for good.

Call SERVPRO of Oak Lawn today to help with your fire damage (708) 239-1444.

Water Damage Experts In Oak Lawn

5/13/2020 (Permalink)

When a water leak takes place inside your Oak Lawn home or business, excessive moisture can negatively affect your contents and building materials. The longer things stay wet, the more likely they will get ruined and need to be replaced. Over time water saturates materials and causes them to lose their structural integrity and fall apart. The organic materials inside your home carry a risk of mold contamination if they stay wet for more than 48 hours.

If moisture stays inside contents and materials, the severity of the problems increase. Our SERVPRO technician's goal is to prevent secondary issues. When water directly affects an object the problems that occur are considered primary. Secondary damage results when water vapor penetrates items and negatively affects them. Therefore, prompt mitigation can greatly reduce the amount of water vapor present in the air, reducing the chance of suffering secondary issues.

The first step to moisture removal is to extract as much water as possible using specialized equipment. Once the extractors get to the point where they are no longer pulling up water, the rapid drying phase begins. The goal of drying is to speed up the natural evaporation process and return moisture levels to normal as quickly as possible.

Since things in nature always seek equilibrium, we know that water from wet materials will evaporate into dry air sitting next to it. This is why we set up air movers to push air across surfaces so that the air next to wet materials stays dry allowing it to collect moisture. However, once all of the air in the room gets saturated, the moisture must be removed from the air. To lower a building’s relative humidity, we set up dehumidifiers that pull vapor out of the air and dispense it in liquid form.

To accomplish speedy drying, our SERVPRO crew uses principles of psychrometry. Psychrometry is the study of the humidity, air, and temperature, and their effect on various materials. Since air can hold more water at higher temperatures, humidity, airflow, and temperature all play major roles in determining how fast materials dry. High relative humidity numbers can slow down drying because the air must have less moisture than the affected materials for water to evaporate. Higher temperatures lower a room’s relative humidity thus speeding up drying.

Structures dry out best when they have constant airflow, high temperatures, and low relative humidity percentages. This is why we use air movers to create circulation, dehumidifiers to keep humidity low, and heaters to raise the temperature. 

If you need help drying out moisture before more problems arise, call SERVPRO of Oak Lawn today (708) 239-1444 24/7. 

Storm And Flooding In Chicago Ridge, IL

5/6/2020 (Permalink)

While flooding represents one of the most catastrophic events that can happen to a home, it can also make for some very peculiar situations. We deal with dozens of flood damage cases in Chicago Ridge every year, and every once in awhile, something happens that truly surprises our seasoned technicians.  

Storm floods can bring in all sorts of items and debris from the outside, and while this makes storm flooding extremely hazardous, it also allows for a fascinating insight into what goes into the neighborhood around us. Here are some of the strangest things we have seen in flooded homes.

Entire Trees

More than once, we have seen an entire tree or bush make its way inside a client's home in Chicago Ridge thanks to flood damage.  While large and well-rooted trees usually stand fast in the face of overwhelming deluges, smaller trees and large bushes can become uprooted as floodwaters inundate the soil around them. Eventually, when the flood hits home, it may send the plant crashing through the front door, making for a messy but thankfully easy-to-fix situation.


Auto Parts
 
What happens when a vehicle gets picked up by floodwaters, or something gets knocked off? Tires and mirrors have to end up somewhere, and sometimes that somewhere in the interior of a home. Seeing auto parts strewn about the area can be jarring at first, but should make for a good story later on. 

SERVPRO of Oak Lawn provides professional flood damage mitigation and restoration services to locals whenever disaster strikes.  Call us for more information on our services (708) 239-1444.

Fire Damage In Oak Lawn IL-What Should I Do After A Fire?

4/27/2020 (Permalink)

A fire of any kind can be devastating.  This can be a difficult and trying time for you and your family. 

Here are some steps to follow after a fire:

1. Call your insurance company right away.

2. Call a fire damage restoration company. 

3. Try to ventilate the building as much as possible.

4. Remain outside of the building or at a safe location if possible.

5. Develop a plan of action for moving forward.

6. Stay in contact with the company you hired.

Quick Response Is Essential 

Whether the fire is small or large, call a highly trained professional company that responds day or night quickly.  From small fires to major blazes, a fire damage restoration company can remediate all of your fire damage problems and restore your home or business safely and efficiently.

Can Smoke Odors Be Removed?

You can become sickened by smoke and soot odors if they are left untreated. Only commercial treatment products by trained experts should be used to treat and remove smoke and smoke odor damage. Don't try to remove it with a home method. These methods could make the damage worse. It may cost you additional later to pay for a professional to undo the damage you caused by trying to clean it up. 

Locally Owned Company with National Resources

We live and work in this community too; we might even be neighbors. As a locally owned and operated business, SERVPRO of Oak Lawn is close by and ready to respond to your cleaning or restoration needs. We are proud to be an active member of the Oak Lawn, IL community and want to do our part to make our community the best it can be.

 We are proud to serve our local communities:

Water Removal Services In Oak Lawn

4/17/2020 (Permalink)

At SERVPRO, we receive many flooding emergencies involving dishwashers that have overflowed and caused damage to floors and other nearby areas. Water damage from a malfunctioned appliance can paralyze activities in the kitchen and lead to all sorts of odors. In fact, it's one of the most frequent causes of moisture damage in the house.

One of the most frequent mistakes property owners make in this situation is assuming that only the floors require water removal. After moping out the water with some towels, they sit back satisfied that the job is done. Unfortunately, when water overflows from the dishwasher, it tends to spread to other parts of the home. It can soak the kitchen cabinets or even permeate the floors and make its way to the crawlspace below. In some cases, it can penetrate the walls and soak up your insulation or even cause damage to electrical sockets in the walls.

The secret to effective water removal when a dishwasher overflows or malfunctions is acting fast. SERVPRO of Oak Lawn offers 24/7 quick water removal services. For emergency services call us today (708) 239-1444. 

SERVPRO Is Here to Help

3/27/2020 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Oak Lawn is available at any time, day or night, to assist you with your water damage.

Beginning with your call, our office staff will aid you every step of the way, helping you assess the best course of action and all of your mitigation needs. You can rest assured when you call our office that you are getting an actual person and not an answering service.

From there, our technicians will restore your home with professionalism and dedication, focusing on accomplishing their goals and doing the best they can to make the lives of those affected a little less hectic.  Our water removal and cleanup process also provide validation and documentation that your property is dry. 

We are pleased and honored to have such great customers around us, and we will only operate a business in these communities, but we live here, we go to school here, we participate in the chambers, and we shop here. Oak Lawn is home to us and it is a pleasure to continue to serve you. 

If you have experienced water or flood damage call us today (708) 239-1444

Disinfecting Your Oak Lawn Home or Business

3/26/2020 (Permalink)

With the recent pandemic of COVID-19 spreading across the United States, residents are looking at their living and work conditions more closely.  

SERVPRO of Oak Lawn can help with disinfecting and cleaning both after contact with the disease or as a preventative measure. With our present experience with other harmful microorganisms and bacteria present in sewage backups and other biohazardous threats to structures, our technicians already possess much of the training, equipment, and disinfection processes necessary to protect your home. 

The techs make safety for all a priority and wear complete physical protection as well as set up containment whenever necessary to halt the potential for cross-contamination during cleanup since the CDC theorizes that the coronavirus may spread via airborne transmission. 

You can depend on SERVPRO of Oak Lawn to take care of you, your home, business, carpets, furniture, etc.  We are available 24/7 so give us a call today for whatever cleaning needs you may have encountered. 708-239-1444

We are Cleaning Experts

3/17/2020 (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 Oak Lawn (708) 239-1444

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

Water Damage From Hot Water Tank In Oak Lawn IL

3/2/2020 (Permalink)

Hot Water Heater If you have water damage in your basement call us 24/7 365 days a year

A Water Damage Emergency

A number of emergency calls that we receive are from homeowners who were away on vacation and came home to a flood in their basement.  There have been a few different reasons, sump pump failing, pipe breaks from a floor above, or maybe the hot water tank decided to start leaking.  

A water heater typically lasts between 8-12 years if it is maintained properly.  You can prevent rust and corrosion by flushing out the sediment at the bottom of the tank.  This may also help the overall efficiency of the unit. If you are unsure about the age of your water heater, you can call your local plumber to come out and do an inspection of it for you. 

if you do come home from vacation to a basement full of water for any reason, call us 24/7 (708) 239-1444 and we can help. 

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.

Commercial Large Loss

3/2/2020 (Permalink)

Desicant Dehumidifier SERVPRO of Oak Lawn is ready for any large loss event call us today (708) 239-1444

The SERVPRO Commercial Large Loss Division is composed of our best of the best in restoration. Our elite large-loss specialists are prequalified and strategically positioned throughout the United States to handle any size disaster.

Every large loss is supervised by a commercial operations manager to help ensure seamless communication and timely mitigation.

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

Clients for the Commercial Large Loss program include the following:

  • The Hospitality Industry
  • Property Managers
  • Universities
  • Municipalities
  • The Pentagon

Should a storm or major event strike, call (708) 239-1444

Catastrophic Storm and Major Event Response

The SERVPRO Disaster Recovery Team can provide help whether you're dealing with a tornado, hurricane, blizzard or flood. The SERVPRO System has a network of strategically positioned storm teams on standby should a disaster strike near you. Available 24 hours a day and 365 days a year, we are prepared for the unpredictable.

With the ability to mobilize local command centers, along with the resources of more than 1,700 Franchises nationwide, no disaster is too big. Recent mobilizations of the Catastrophic Storm Response Teams include:

  • 2014 Polar Vortex
  • 2012 Sandy
  • 2010 Nashville floods
  • 2008 Ike
  • 2007 Chicago floods
  • 2007 Ohio floods
  • 2007 California wildfires
  • 2005 Katrina/Wilma/Rita

Do You Know What To Do If A Fire Happens In Your Home?

2/24/2020 (Permalink)

Fire Damaged Home SERVPRO of Oak Lawn is available 24/7 to assist with your fire or smoke damage emergency

According to FEMA there were 1,319,500 fires reported in 2017. A fire can start in our home when we least expect it. 

Your primary focus should be your family's safety and getting them out of the home.

Here are a few other tips on what to do:

  • Limit movement in the home to prevent soot particles from being embedded into upholstery and carpets.
  • Keep hands clean so as not to further soil upholstery, walls and woodwork.
  • Place clean towels or old linens on rugs, upholstery and carpet traffic areas.
  • If electricity is off, empty freezer and refrigerator and prop doors open.
  • Clean and protect chrome with light coating of petroleum jelly or oil.
  • Wash houseplants on both sides of leaves.
  • Change HVAC filter.
  • Tape double layers of cheesecloth over air registers.

Once the smoke has cleared from your home and the fire department has left, you will be left with questions, anger and anxiety of when to begin putting your life back together. 

By calling SERVPRO of Oak Lawn (708) 239-1444, you can be assured we will be at your home within the hour to begin the restoration process. We are available 24/7  for your fire or smoke damage emergency. When you call our office, one of our staff will be ready to assist you immediately. 

SERVPRO Specializes In Flooded Basement Cleanup And Restoration

2/18/2020 (Permalink)

Water Extraction SERVPRO of Oak Lawn is available 24/7 to handle your water damage emergency

Most flooding that occurs in your basement happens during a heavy rainfall. However, we are here to tell you that it can happy at any time for various reasons that you may not think of. 

Basements are unfortunately prone to flooding since they are the lowest level of a building and are built partly or entirely below ground level.  

Here are a few reasons why your basement could flood: 

  • A Water supply-line break 
  • Hot water tank failure
  • Foundation drainage issues
  • Sewer backup
  • Heavy rains pooling around your home
  • Blocked or failed sewer pipe

Flood water should be handled quickly and properly. If it sits for an extended period of time it can jeopardize your health and safety as well as cause severe damage to your home's integrity. 

SERVPRO of Oak Lawn is locally owned an operated. If you have an emergency in the middle of the night or anytime you can call us (708) 239-1444. We are available 24/7 and we pride ourselves on being at your home within the hour after you call. 

24/7 365 Days A Year Emergency Service

11/18/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Oak Lawn is available at any time, day or night, to assist you with your water damage. Beginning with your call, our office staff will aid you every step of the way, helping you assess the best course of action and all of your mitigation needs. You can rest assured when you call our office that you are getting an actual person and not an answering service. From there, our technicians will will restore your home with professionalism and dedication, focusing on accomplishing their goals and doing the best they can to make the lives of those affected a little less hectic.  Our water removal and cleanup process also provides validation and documentation that your property is dry. 

If you have experienced water or flood damage call us today (708) 239-1444

Attic Mold In Your Oak Lawn Home

10/1/2019 (Permalink)

Call us anytime 24/7 we are ready to help you take care of the mold damage in your home.

Attic mold can happen in your home any time throughout the year. The majority of our attic mold phone calls are from people who are currently selling their home and a home inspector has found mold.  So many homeowners never use or check their attic space regularly. 

There are various reasons that you can end up with mold in your attic these may be:

  • Improper ventilation from either a bathroom or kitchen vent. 
  • Not having enough insulation can allow hot spots to occur on your roof and melt snow when the temperatures are still well below freezing. 
  • If your roof has a small leak, this can also lead to mold.

If you happen to do an inspection of your attic or other areas of your home and do find what you suspect is mold, give us a call today (708) 239-1444 and we can resolve it for you. 

Flooded Basement Cleanup In Chicago Ridge, IL

10/1/2019 (Permalink)

Most often, basements flood during a heavy rainfall although it can happen at any time.  Basements are unfortunately prone to flooding since they are the lowest level of a building and are usually built partly or entirely below ground level. Here are some reasons why your basement can flood: 

  • A blocked or failed sewer pipe
  • Heavy rain causing surface water to pool around your home
  • Storm sewer backup
  • Sanitary sewer backup
  • Foundation drainage issues
  • Water supply-line or hot-water tank failure

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

Do you have questions about basement flooding? Call our office today (708) 239-1444

SERVPRO Provides Fire Cleanup In Alsip

10/1/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Oak Lawn can help with restoration after a fire in your home.

If you have recently had a fire in your home, looking around you may feel hopeless.  However with the proper restoration company here to help you, it is possible to save your home, its contents and your cherished personal belongings. 

Regardless of how or where a fire occurs in your home, fire and water damage go hand-in-hand.  The firefighters use water to douse the flames, making locating and removing water after the fire is out essential.  You want to avoid leaving behind any water that could eventually lead to mold or other biohazards that could pose a risk to you and your family. 

At SERVPRO, we assess every area of your home to determine the best way to return it to a quality pre-damage condition and eliminate any problems that could compromise our goal.  We have IICRC certified technicians who special in water and fire damage restoration tasks, as well as cleaning, deodorization, and repair technicians to ensure your restoration goes off without a hitch.  

SERVPRO manages your entire restoration process from beginning to end, making the process itself less stressful and invading.  We help you stand up when standing is hard, providing you with solutions that help bring life back to your home.  Our technicians are available 24/7 allowing you access to expertly trained personnel, industrial-grade equipment and quality restoration services any time you need them. 

Call us today for more information or to schedule an inspection of your home (708)239-1444

Storm Damage From Sump Pump Failure In Oak Lawn, IL

9/30/2019 (Permalink)

Over the weekend in the Chicago area we were hit with some heavy storms leaving a lot of damage. 

When it is raining outside, we recommend taking a minute to check and make sure your sump pump is working. 

  • Does your sump pump have power? Make sure that it is plugged in and the breaker has not tripped.
  • Check the float and make sure it is free of any debris and away from the side wall so that it works properly. 
  • Also check the inlet in case there is debris that could prevent it from pumping out the water. 
  • Is the pump working? You can easily test this by filling the pit with enough water to reach the float so that it triggers it to start running. 
  • Last thing to check is the area where the sump pump drains. It should drain away from the foundation so that it does not leak back in. 

By taking a minute to check these few things with your sump pump, this can save you from having water damage in your home. 

In the event you do find yourself with water damage, call SERVPRO of Oak Lawn today (708)239-1444 we are here to help.

Are You Ready?

9/23/2019 (Permalink)

Preparation is a key component for making it through any size disaster, whether it's a small water leak, a large fire or an area flood.  The best time for planning for such events is not when the event happens, but well before it happens.  No one ever plans on a disaster, but you can plan for it.  Now is the time to ask yourself, "Are you ready for whatever happens?"

The SERVPRO Emergency Ready Profile is a start up approach that provides the critical information needed to begin mitigation and recovery services.  It is designed to serve as a quick reference of important building and contact information.  By working with SERVPRO's ERP, your business can receive the benefit of over 40 years of experience in reducing the impact of any natural or man-made disaster.  SERVPRO is a leader in water and fire damage response and can help you quickly get your property back in working order. 

Electrical Fire Safety

8/6/2019 (Permalink)

Fire damage in your home or business can occur without warning.  Determining the extent of the loss is critical to planning the fire cleanup and restoration.  Identifying the source of the fire is necessary to understand what conditions were favorable to start the fire.  One of the most commonly overlooked causes is overloaded electrical receptacles.  

Overcrowded electrical outlets can over burden the electrical circuit and set the stage for an electrical fire.  The most obvious sign of this is a power strip or outlet that has several cords plugged into it.  Although this might be convenient, this increases the chance of an electrical fire.  You should frequently inspect these and unplug what you are not using at the time. 

Another concern that may be a warning sign is flickering lights or lights that appear to be dimmer than usual.  This can be a problem because many homeowners may think their light bulb is getting close to needing replacement.  This may also be a sign that the light bulb is reaching its maximum capacity, so it is important to monitor this to ensure electrical safety.  Homeowners should never make assumptions when it comes to electrical safety and the safety of those who reside in the home. 

Locally Owned Company with National Resources

The possibilities of an electrical fire are serious concerns that must be dealt with in an urgent matter.  In the event of an electrical or any other type of fire, contact our team of professionals at SERVPRO of Oak Lawn (708) 239-1444

Storm Damage In Oak Lawn

8/6/2019 (Permalink)

Storms can happen at any time since as we all know the weather in the Oak Lawn area can be unpredictable to say the least. Being prepared is a must so here is our recommended list:

  • Flashlight with extra batteries
  • First Aid Kit
  • Cellphone battery back up charger
  • Canned food
  • Manual Can Opener
  • Bottled Water
  • Blankets
  • Fire Extinguisher
  • Battery Power Radio

Having these items may help keep panic at a minimum.  Keep these items in a safe place you can go in the event of any type of storm.  If you have a basement, or possibly in a bathroom closet if you do not have a basement. The canned food should have a long shelf life so be sure to check expiration dates at least once a year and replenish your supply if necessary. Also be sure to regularly test your batteries. 

Hotel Storm Damage

8/6/2019 (Permalink)

At SERVPRO of Oak Lawn, we understand that keeping your guests satisfied is your top priority, and you can rest assured that you are ours.  When disaster strikes at a hospitality facility, the help of a specialized team is critical in assuring that normal operations resume as quickly and safely as possible.  Whether the cause is a coat hanger on a sprinkler head or a natural disaster, we work to efficiently isolate the damaged area so that basic functions can continue normally, and guests can enjoy your services with minimal impact.  Our professionals are trained to work with your management and maintenance teams to prioritize spaces and make sure that all areas are restored to your complete satisfaction. 

Our experience in the hospitality industry has given us the ability to provide a variety of detailed services for the following hospitality facilities: 

  • Hotels
  • Convention Centers
  • Casinos
  • Resorts
  • Entertainment Venues
  • Banquet Halls

If you need assistance at your facility, call SERVPRO of Oak Lawn today (708)239-1444

Is Your Business Prepared If Disaster Strikes?

7/30/2019 (Permalink)

A disaster in your business, not something any owner wants to think about until they are forced to. Many owners go about their days worrying about finances but not water or fire damage. That is what SERVPRO is for right? Yes, that is true, we are definitely here to help with any disaster that comes your way, but here a few precautions that may protect your business. 

  • Teach your employees to maintain their work areas. Paper and trash can potentially fuel a fire. 
  • Check smoke and carbon monoxide detectors regularly.
  • Inspect fire extinguishers.
  • Train employees how to use fire extinguishers and make sure they know where all the emergency exits are located.
  • Have an evacuation plan and be ready for the unexpected.

If you have had fire or water damage in our business, call SERVPRO of Oak Lawn today (708)239-1444

Summer Grilling Safety

7/5/2019 (Permalink)

Now that summer is in full swing, so is grilling season! In order to prevent a trip to the emergency room or a visit from SERVPRO of Oak Lawn for fire damage, please follow these helpful tips.

- All grills should be used outdoors away from the house, eaves, railings and overhanging branches.
- Keep the grill free of grease buildup and never leave it unattended.
- Kids and pets should be at least 3 feet away from the grill at all times.
- For gas grills check for leaks before it is used for the first time every year.
- If you smell gas when using a gas grill, immediately get away from the grill and call fire department.
- Use only charcoal starter fluid to start a charcoal grill.
- Let charcoal cool completely before disposing in a metal container.  When disposing make sure the area is inaccessible for children and pets.

Make sure all grilling memories are great memories, use caution when grilling!

Fire Safety

7/5/2019 (Permalink)

In order for a fire to start it needs three things - Oxygen, Heat & Fuel.  If one is missing a fire cannot start!  In order to protect yourself, it is important to understand the basic characteristics of fire.
• Fire is FAST. In just two minutes, a fire can become life-threatening. In five minutes, a residence can be engulfed in flames.
• Fire is DARK. Fire produces gases that make you disoriented and drowsy. Instead of being awakened by a fire, you may fall into a deeper sleep. Asphyxiation is the leading cause of fire deaths, exceeding burns by a three- to- one ratio.
• Fire is HOT. Heat and smoke from fire can be more dangerous than the flames. Inhaling the hot air can sear your lungs.

How do you protect yourself from fire?
• Plan 2 minute escape plan and practice it!
• Make sure smoke detectors work!!
• Avoid overloading extension cords.
• Have open and clearly marked exits.

The HIdden Dangers of Flood Water

7/3/2019 (Permalink)

When more than a couple inches of rain falls, sometimes the sewers cannot keep up. The result is large areas of water building up. A lot of times you will see people walking/wading through this deep water. There are many dangerous reasons why you should not walk through the water.

One reason flood water is dangerous is because it is a mixture of sewage water and chemicals. The water picks up everything and anything a long the way. This can include human or animal fecal matter, gasoline, oil, and other substances that can cause serious illness, rashes, or chemical burns on your skin.

Another hidden damage can be the contents in the water. The water can easily pick up small items like rusty nails, broken glass, or sharp branches. Since the water is typically dark and dirty looking, you cannot see what is lurking under the surface. By walking through the water, you are more likely to have a sharp object cut you and then the dirty water can enter the wound which can result in serious illness or infection.

Water Damage In Your Chicago Ridge Business

6/4/2019 (Permalink)

From the moment that our SERVPRO team arrives at your business, we work to determine the source of the water damage and get the area repaired.

The last thing any business owner needs is a water emergency that forces them to close temporarily for business.  One of the benefits of choosing a professional water restoration company is that the job will get done more efficiently.  This helps ensure your business will not be closed for long. 

From the moment that our SERVPRO team arrives at your business, we work to determine the source of the water damage and get this area repaired. This repair is the first step in restoration, as it prevents further damage to the area while drying and cleanup are underway. While more significant circumstances could warrant replacement of materials and extraction equipment, often water damage incidents only require basic cleanup techniques and high-powered drying tools.

Drying the area is a critical step of restoration.  This process implements air movers and dehumidifiers, but could also require more specialized equipment for specific areas and materials. Once the area is dried out, our SERVPRO professionals can work on deodorization before completing the project. 

If you have had water damage in your business, call us today (708) 239-1444.

Flood Damage Contamination in Oak Lawn

5/31/2019 (Permalink)

Flood damage can bring contaminated water into your home, SERVPRO works quickly to remove the water and restore your home.

These last few months the Oak Lawn area has seen a significant amount of rainfall. This has caused flooding in some low lying areas.  

Flood damage in Oak Lawn from storms also brings the threat of contaminated water. The soil is the most common contaminant, but other sources include something as simple as the water a flood pushes back through a washing machine. The additional risk to a home increases the cost of cleanup and makes the remediation and restoration services SERVPRO provides more critical than if the water was clean.

The first step we take is to lift property off the floor. When contaminated water is in the carpets, sofas and other furniture have to be placed on blocks or taken out of the home. It helps water to drain from the property items, increase airflow around them and also prevents furniture from leaving stains on floors and carpets.

We start to clean Items with surface contamination immediately, and then we inspect all property again to determine the right method. We prefer to use brushes to remove as much of the contaminants as possible if it does not spread it or damage the surface. It is effective on hard surfaces but less effective on upholstered furniture or delicate fabrics like heavy drapes or curtains.

Remediating the effects of a flood can be difficult but SERVPRO of Oak Lawn is here to help! We have the equipment, training, and experience to help you through the procedures.  

Call us today (708) 239-1444

Rain Rain Go Away!

5/30/2019 (Permalink)

Has your business suffered water damage from all the recent rain in the Chicago area? We have taken a pounding from the recent weather, but you do not have to worry about the repairs. 

Calling your local SERVPRO is like calling a neighbor for help. Our staff assesses the situation by asking a series of pertinent questions to determine the proper amount of equipment and personnel necessary for the job. Next, we set an appointment that fits your schedule to have our technicians begin your restoration. 

Once SERVPRO technicians arrive, an onsite manager will walk you through an initial inspection, discuss the options that are available to restore your business and give you an approximate time frame for completion. They will also answer any questions that pop up throughout the restoration process and address any concerns you may have. 

We look forward to building a solid, stable history with our clients that keeps them coming back to us, should they ever need future repairs to get their businesses back on track after a natural disaster, fire, mold, or vandalism incident strikes. You can count on us to perform the services you need and get things back to normal as fast as possible. 

Restoring Your Oak Lawn Home After A Fire

4/24/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Oak Lawn is here to help you restore your home after fire damage.

According to the U.S Fire Administration, there was an estimated average of 188,800 cooking fires in residential buildings each year from 2014 to 2016.  Even though the majority of these fires may have been contained to the kitchen, smoke damage can spread throughout the entire residence.  

SERVPRO of Oak Lawn has the specialized equipment and techniques to remove smoke and soot from ceilings, walls and other surfaces.  We clean, sanitize, and disinfect all of the restorable items and structures that were damaged by the fire.  We use a variety of cleaning techniques to restore your belongings to pre-fire condition.  We are also trained to remove odors using industrial air scrubbers and fogging equipment. 

To learn more about our fire repair process, click here. 

If you have had the unfortunate occurrence of a fire in your home or business, call us today to help (708) 239-1444

Hickory Hills Emergency Commercial Water Damage Cleanup

4/8/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Oak Lawn is here to help 24/7 with your commercial water damage.

As most of us know, April weather can be very unpredictable in our area. Today it is 72 degrees and sunny and the forecast is calling for rain and snow on Wednesday along with 40 degree temperatures! Bring on the warm weather already! 

Sometimes, with this type of weather we can end up with rain for days on end which can cause flooding. Being prepared is the key. Some commercial business owners treat property issues as part of doing business, but dealing with flood damage can be problematic.  

Flood damage can destroy inventory, stock, supplies, office furniture, documents and electronic equipment as well as cause structural damage.  This can lead to a loss of business and closed doors means lost commercial cash flow and loss of customer traffic. 

SERVPRO of Oak Lawn is here to help. We are ready 24/7 to assist with your small or large commercial water damage situation. 

Call us today (708) 239-1444

Emergency Water Damage Cleanup In Worth

4/8/2019 (Permalink)

Emergency Water Damage Cleanup In Worth, IL

Whether you own a large business, apartment complex, small business, or home, chances are you take great pride in your property.  Suppose you arrive home one evening after work and come across a burst pipe, sewer backup, or leaky water heater in your home. Whichever the case may be, a continuous trickle or a large amount of water damage can lead to a disaster and requires immediate cleanup.  SERVPRO of Oak Lawn specializes in extraction and water damage restoration.

In these situations, always try to remember safety first.  When water damage occurs, it can be very stressful and sometimes even dangerous.  If not acted upon quickly, any amount of water accumulation can lead to larger problems such as mold and mildew.  Further damage to walls, ceilings and floors, or even the outer structure of your home or property.  

SERVPRO of Oak Lawn strives to provide the best possible service every time. No matter how big or small your water damage may be, we have the proper training, equipment, and products to restore your home or business to preloss state.  

Call us today (708) 239-1444

Our Equipment

3/27/2019 (Permalink)

Our equipment is designed to get the job done right.

Did you know that SERVPRO of Oak Lawn has more than 20 different types of cleaning equipment available to tackle any type of job? In addition to the many types of fans, dehumidifiers, air purifiers and vacuums we have specialty equipment designed to dry underneath hardwood floors without damaging the floor and well as equipment to dry behind walls.

No job is too small or big for us, our well-trained crews have the know-how to provide professional, quality work and are available 24/7 to respond to any size emergency.

Fire damage and flooded basements are our specialty. We are only a phone call away and always available to answer any questions you may have regarding the process, the cleaning products or equipment.

If your home or business has been affected by fire or water damage call us today - (708) 239-1444.

Oak Lawn Smoke & Soot Cleanup

3/25/2019 (Permalink)

Soot damage in an Oak Lawn home.

When a fire happens in your home or business, lives are suddenly turned around.  Recovery can be a mentally and physically draining process.  So, who do you contact and where do you begin?

Smoke and soot is very invasive and can penetrate various cavities within your home, causing hidden damage and odor. Hot smoke migrates to cooler areas and upper levels of a structure. Smoke can also flow around plumbing systems, seeping through the holes used by pipes to go from floor to floor.

Soot removal inside the home should take place as soon as possible after a fire. Leaving it untreated, soot and smoke can immediately begin to rust, discolor, and stain your walls, floors, textiles, porous surfaces, and metal objects. The oils and acid in the soot will stick to surfaces and begin to erode materials quickly. 

Since each smoke and fire damage situation is a little different, each one requires a unique solution tailored for the specific conditions.  SERVPRO of Oak Lawn has the equipment, expertise, and experience to restore your fire and smoke damaged home and contents.   We will also treat your family with empathy and respect and your property with care.

Give the responsibility of restoration and repair to professionals who will do it right. Call SERVPRO of Oak Lawn today (708) 239-1444 to assist you with getting your home put back together. 

There for Our Communities 24/7/365

3/25/2019 (Permalink)

WHY SERVPRO?

SERVPRO of Oak Lawn provides 24-hour emergency service and is dedicated to being faster to any-sized disaster in our community. We can respond immediately to your emergency and have the expertise to handle your restoration or cleaning needs.

  • Highly Trained Restoration Technicians
  • A Trusted Leader in the Restoration Industry
  • Locally Owned and Operated
  • Advanced Restoration and Cleaning Equipment 

SERVPRO of Oak Lawn always strives to provide the best possible service. No matter how big or small your water damage may be, we have the know-how to restore your home or business to preloss state.  

If your home has sustained major water damage, you may feel like your home will never recover. Call the professionals who can fix it "Like it never even happened."

If you have questions about water or fire damage, call us 24/7/365 - (708) 239-1444

We are proud to serve our local communities

Ice Dams: The Nightmare

3/5/2019 (Permalink)

Ice formed on roof of home causing damage to ceiling and walls.

There is nothing worse than thinking you made it through months of continuous snow storms and frigid temperatures without a problem, then looking up at your ceiling and noticing dripping water or water marks and bubbling paint. This could be a sure sign of an...

*cue dramatic music* ICE DAM.

Ice Dams are caused by water that has pooled behind the snow and ice on your roof. The water will then seep under the shingles, drip through the roof into the soffits, walls and the ceiling leaving an ugly mess.

Many people are not aware of the damage ice dams can cause until it affects their home. Knowing and understanding the potential issues that can occur in and around your home during horrible winter weather can keep your home safe.

Keeping your attic cold by adding roof and soffit vents, properly insulating your home and attic to prevent heat from escaping and/or purchasing a roof rake to remove the snow while standing on the ground can possibly prevent ice dams. Please note CLIMBING ON YOUR ROOF CAN BE DANGEROUS so if you are unable to remove the snow safely please contact a professional.

If you have questions about ice dams or water damage, please do not hesitate to contact our office. We are here to help and can send a certified technician to your home to assess the problem, answer questions regarding contacting your insurance company, if needed and provide an estimate for mitigation.

We can turn your weather related DAMage into a thing of the past!

We are available 24/7 @ (708) 239-1444

Winter Snow Storms In Oak Lawn, IL

1/17/2019 (Permalink)

Anyone who lives in Chicago knows the weather here can be unpredictable to say the least. Weather forecasters are speculating we will get anywhere between 5-10 inches this coming weekend and this forecast changes pretty much daily. Then after the snow into next week we are supposed to have below freezing temperatures. 

When we get a large amount of snow and then it freezes, this could cause issues for your gutters if they haven't been cleared of the fall leaves. It could also be a problem if you do not have the proper insulation in your attic. When the water starts to melt, it could try to find a way into your home and down your walls. This could lead to structural problems and mold and mildew if not cleaned up properly. 

If you start to notice water spots on your ceiling or walls, call us today to come out to inspect it for you. (708) 239-1444

Drive safely and stay warm! 

Create a Home Inventory List

1/9/2019 (Permalink)

If your belongings were lost in a fire would you know how to begin putting your life back together? Would you remember exactly how many pieces of China you own or the model number of your expensive vacuum cleaner? Compiling a list of your belongings now can help you immediately know what needs to be replace during a disaster, when it hard to remember. Typically, after a disaster, insurance companies will ask for a list of everything lost. Having a created list can save time and energy during a very emotional time.

Creating an inventory list can be as simple as taking pictures with your phone or camera then uploading them to a cloud-based storage or to your email. This method assures the list will be accessible when needed. The list should also include the date purchased and the purchased price. Sometimes these things can be easier said than done so there are computer software and apps available on IOS and Android that can assist with the process.

Should a disaster arise, and you have not created an inventory list SERVPRO of Oak Lawn can assist with compiling a list of the damaged items and submit it to your insurance company on your behalf. Our production teams not only document all pertinent information on the items (brand, model and serial numbers) they take pictures of the items as well.

Remember that compiling an inventory list should be revised at least once a year and should you experience the unfortunate circumstances of a fire or smoke damage in Oak Lawn, SERVPRO is ready to help 24/7!

Call us today (708) 239-1444

Knowledge Is Power! Educate Employees About Fire Safety

12/27/2018 (Permalink)

Protecting your business from a fire should begin with training your employees on how to prevent them.  Some fires can be prevented in the office kitchen just by setting some simple rules. 

It is also important to train staff on how to properly use fire extinguishers in an instance where the fire is small enough to put out without calling 911. If the fire is uncontrollable, employees should know the emergency protocols and established evacuation routes. 

Office equipment should be checked regularly. Kitchen appliances should be clean and in good working condition. This means no frayed electrical cords that can start a fire.  Proper maintenance and inspections should also be conducted on heating equipment and lighting systems to make sure they are cleaned and functioning properly. 

If you do experience a fire in your business, you can call SERVPRO of Oak Lawn to help you through every step of the process. We will help get you back up and running as quickly as possible. 

For more information on our commercial fire services:

Commercial Services or you can call us (708) 239-1444.

Winter Weather Is Here!

11/15/2018 (Permalink)

More often than not, as homeowners, the last thing we want to do is home repairs.  Not only do they take time (and many of us don't have a lot to spare), but they can also be costly and sometimes tedious.  Small repairs such as changing a light bulb or fixing a leaky faucet can be put off until it is absolutely necessary to fix, but there are some repairs that should never be put off.  Unfortunately, many of these involve major things (and can come with an even more major price tag), but avoiding the two repairs listed below could actually cause bigger problems down the road when the cold freezing temperatures and snow hit us shortly.  

Roof Issues

Every home has a roof.  This is one of the most important parts of any building because it protects what is inside.  The roof is a major player when it comes to keeping up on repairs.  If you notice any leaks, missing or damaged shingles/tiles or any kind of sagging this should be fixed as soon as possible.  Leaks mean water will get into your home and then may lead to mold, structure damage and even possibly fire if it comes in contact with anything electrical.  Missing or damaged shingles can lead to a number of issues if not fixed and create weak spots in a roof  A sagging roof could signify moisture in the attic and could be a sign of poor ventilation, broken or cracked joists, rafters or the ridge line itself.  

Foundation Issues

The foundation of your home is extremely important-it holds up your home's entire structure.  Cracks in the foundation are definitely something not to overlook when it comes to repairs. The last thing you want as a homeowner is for a crack to spread.  Checking your home's foundation in the fall will help prevent water from thawing snow or ice getting into your home in the spring.  

Plumbing Issues

Water anywhere other than in a pipe or sink basin is bad, especially for your home.  Plumbing issues and leaks anywhere in your property should be addressed as soon as possible.  Winter in the Chicago area is known for its below freezing temperatures.  This can sometimes take a toll on the plumbing and pipes in your home.  Checking them now will be a great step towards prevention. 

SERVPRO of Oak Lawn Mold Experience

10/25/2018 (Permalink)

When a home suffers a water damage event, a mold infestation can quickly arise and spread throughout a home in 48-72 hours. Because mold can produce allergens and irritants, you will want a professional that has training and experience to properly resolve the mold infestation. If you suspect that your Oak Lawn home or business has a mold problem, SERVPRO of Oak Lawn can inspect, assess and remediate your property.

Learn more about mold and what to do until help arrives by reviewing these mold damage tips.

In these before and after pictures, mold was found behind the walls and kitchen cabinets due to a water leak in the bathroom above.  We were able to safely remove the mold from the home and also completed the restoration process.  

Flooded Basement In Oak Lawn IL

10/10/2018 (Permalink)

 

A basement can flood at any time, although flooding most often occurs during heavy rainfall. Basements are 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 Oak Lawn basement could flood, including: 

  • A sewer pipe that is blocked or cracked
  • Surface water from heavy rains that can 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

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. 

If you have questions call us 24/7 (708) 239-1444.

Mold Prevention Tips

10/10/2018 (Permalink)

If you have seen mold in your bathroom, this may cause you to worry.  Showers and baths can create lingering moisture. Without the proper ventilation, excess moisture can cause mold to grow. Also, if you have a leak in your pipes behind the walls that you can't see, this can contribute to mold growth.  

A few simple steps to prevent mold in your bathroom: 

  1. Properly ventilate your bathroom. If you have a fan, make sure it is on or open a window while you shower or take a bath. 
  2. After you are finished, allow the fan to run for at least 30 minutes to allow air to circulate. 
  3. Use mildew-resistant shower and window curtains. 
  4. Wipe down your shower after use to remove any lingering moisture. 
  5. Once a month, wash your shower curtain.
  6. Damp laundry should not be left on the floor. 
  7. If you notice any leaks, try to get them repaired ASAP.

If you suspect mold, we can come inspect it for you. Call us today 708-239-1444

Mold Removal In Oak Lawn IL

10/10/2018 (Permalink)

Information on Mold Remediation in Oak Lawn

Mold growth can begin anywhere from 2-3 days after a storm causes water damage.  The mold is a harmful issue, and it can negatively affect your health, house, and the contents within your home.  As the length of exposure to storm water damage increases, the chance for air spores that spread mold also escalates. Mold remediation becomes more challenging as the signs of mold growth that include musty odors, and discolored surfaces, become more apparent.

Act Fast

Our highly trained mold removal technicians use the latest technology and tools to quickly address your mold problem in a manner that effectively removes mold colonies. Unlike DIY techniques, our SERVPRO professional service does not carry the risk of improperly removing mold, in this way, expediting a more rapid return to a healthy home environment.  We are also trained and licensed to handle lead, asbestos and other dangerous materials that may show up during the mold removal process.

We are available 24 per day. Before your appointment, be sure to:

  • Inventory damaged and missing goods for your insurance claim.
  • Throw away all sealed and unsealed food and beverage contacted by storm flood waters. 
  • Open windows and doors.
  • Refrain from using electrical devices until it is safe.
  • Remove standing water when possible.
  • Use dehumidifiers and fans to ventilate your home; SERVPRO can perform this task upon arrival.

Our mold remediation technician will also determine if any contents in your home are salvageable.  Porous items that are wet for over 48 hours and cannot be completely dried and cleaned must be disposed of.

This list includes carpet, carpet padding, ceiling tiles, clothing, drywall, floor tiles, insulation, leather goods, paper, upholstery, wallpaper and wood items.

When our mold remediation expert arrives, he will:

  • Apply biocides.
  • Decide whether or not you can stay in your house during the mold remediation process.
  • Determine if additional ventilation and containment is needed.
  • Look for mold in the HVAC system and biological hazards in the home.
  • Test for any additional mold after the mold remediation process.
  • Use quick structural drying techniques.

If you suspect you have mold in your home or business call us today (708) 239-1444

Why You Should Have A Fire Extinguisher

10/10/2018 (Permalink)

Office buildings need specific fire safety equipment to keep both employees and clients safe. This includes smoke detectors, sprinklers, fire alarms, and extinguishers.  

The first step in fire damage restoration is to put out the fire using the proper tools.  A first responder may use an approved portable fire extinguisher to prevent a small fire from growing and causing further damage.  

The National Fire Protection Agency publishes a series of standards and requirements for portable fire extinguishers called NFPA 10, available here.

No matter what the size of the fire, your first priority should be to get everyone out safely and call 911.  Once the fire has been put out, you can call SERVPRO of Oak Lawn (708) 239-1444 to assist with the fire damage restoration.  

Here is a link for another great resource on why you should buy a fire extinguisher for your home. 

National Preparedness Month - Flood Damage

9/28/2018 (Permalink)

Being prepared for a flood can help protect your home and family.

One of the most common natural disasters in the U.S. are floods according to Ready.gov. Flooding can result from a number of different circumstances including:

  • Severe storms
  • Snow melting
  • Prolonged periods of rain
  • Clogged sewer drains
  • Overflows of dams or water systems

Some areas in the U.S. have a higher risk of flooding and are considered flood zones.  In a flood zone, water can rise without warning and occur all throughout the year.  It is crucial to prepare for floods before they can cause damage to your business or home. 

Preparing for a flood

When there is a threat of severe weather, being prepared beforehand can help keep you and your family safe. 

1. Be aware of your risk.

There are areas that are more susceptible to flooding than others. You can check Fema.gov by entering your address. 

2. Have an emergency kit.

Emergency kits should include essentials like food, water, flashlights, extra batteries and medications.  It is recommended to have at least a 3 day supply just in case you are stranded or have to leave your home with little or no warning.

3. Keep informed. 

You community has a weather warning system that you should subscribe to so that you will receive updates in real-time.  Also, you can sign up for alerts from the Emergency Alert System and the National Weather Service.  If you are notified in advance of a flood watch or advisory, you may be able to prepare you home in the event of significant damage. 

4. Have an evacuation route planned. 

Your local community may already have pre-determined evacuation routes and shelters in place.  If not, you should plan your own route.  Try to have more than one exit route out of your neighborhood in the event roads are closed. 

5. Protecting your home.

Unfortunately, most standard insurance policies do not cover damage caused by floods.  You can contact your insurance agent to determine which additional coverage you may need in the event of a flood.  

While being prepared can help protect your family, it is also important to know what to do after a flood

If you experience flooding in your home, call SERVPRO of Oak Lawn today (708) 239-1444.

When Disaster Strikes Your Business

9/10/2018 (Permalink)

When your Oak Lawn business suffers from a disaster event like a fire or flood, you will have to think about many different details at the same time.  Your clients may need to be notified, shipping may have to be delayed or canceled, customer support will have to be increased, employees may be displaced but still need to work, and so on. 

A disaster event will undoubtedly be a trying time, and it is important to figure out what should take priority and what can be delegated to others so you can focus on getting your business back to full speed as soon as possible.  

Depending on what type of business you own, the equipment, technology, and the items that can be salvaged or stored from inside your building might be some of the most important assets to your business.  You will need someone who can help you track and manage those items for you, so you can focus on the other tasks at hand.  

SERVPRO of Oak Lawn provides content storage services along with our disaster restoration efforts.

In your time of need, consider the benefits of working with us to keep your items safe:

  • Saved time – Instead of attempting to move your important items yourself, you can simply work with us. We’ll already be on site to provide any type of disaster restoration service you need, and we’ll begin the content storage process at the same time.
  • All-in-one service – You won’t have to spread yourself thin calling all over the place finding different companies to provide different services. We provide disaster restoration, content storage, and full project management services.  You’ll only have to make one call to have all of your needs handled.
  • Meticulous environment – We will log each and every one of your items into inventory so you know exactly what’s being stored. We also use a climate controlled storage facility that will provide a stable environment for your precious technology and equipment. Instead of having to wonder what’s been taken care of and what’s being restored or salvaged, you’ll have a detailed picture of everything you need to know.

As a business owner, you have probably had to learn how to delegate important tasks to other people.  That is what great leaders do, focus on the essentials and rely on other reliable professionals to fill in the gaps. 

Let SERVPRO of Oak Lawn handle your tricky situation of disaster restoration.

CALL US TODAY (708) 239-1444

Mold Damage Remediation in Alsip, IL

8/3/2018 (Permalink)

A small amount of visible mold can be hiding larger mold issues behind the wall.
If you suspect you have mold, you should first consult an environmental specialist to determine what types of mold you are dealing with and where it is coming from.  Once that is done, SERVPRO can take the proper steps to properly remediate the mold.

Water damaged ceilings and walls provide an ideal home for mold colonies to flourish.  Most damage can be easily seen when it occurs after a flood or as a result of the water used to put out a fire, but some water damage can lie concealed behind walls.  Mold that forms in these areas may also remain undetected by most people, but not to trained professionals.  

Call SERVPRO of Oak Lawn today (708) 239-1444 if you suspect you have mold. We provide complete mold remediation in Oak Lawn and the surrounding suburbs.

Storm Damage In Your Oak Lawn Business

8/3/2018 (Permalink)

The last thing anyone wants to think about is a storm causing damage inside their business.

Some commercial business owners treat property issues as part of doing business.  Flood damage can destroy inventory, stock, supplies, office furniture, documents and electronic equipment as well as cause structural damage.  Also, there could be potential health issues arising from contaminated water and possible mold contamination. SERVPRO suggests the following to help mitigate water damage to your business facility. 

In many cases, flood damage results from the effects of a storm.  There are several types of water damage that can result from storm surges. Some of them include:

  • Building displacement or damage
  • Mold growth in commercial properties within walls or HVAC systems
  • Damage to coastal rail lines, highways, or roads resulting in less accessibility for transportation
  • Loss of business, closed doors means lost commercial cash flow, less rent, and loss of customer traffic 

How to Save on Flood Damage Restoration


Have a flood insurance program. By purchasing business interruption insurance, you can gain reimbursement for a claim and lessen the impact of no revenue stream and thus lower your total costs. SERVPRO is recognized as a preferred vendor by many insurance and management companies. We can help speed the process of water damage restoration. The best way to reduce or prevent damages generated by storm surges is to implement strategies before the onset of hurricane season. Here are some strategies you should implement:

  • Build higher. If you own your commercial building, consider the value of finding the property's base flood elevation and building above it. Hire a structural engineer to offer a plan to reinforce your commercial property.
  • Place valuables higher. If your building contains more than one floor, be sure to move valuable assets, technical equipment, and computers to the second floor.
  • Invest in preventative installations. Be sure to install some back-flow valves in the property's sewer lines. These valves will prevent city sewage from flowing into your property in the event of a storm surge. Have available access to water surge barricading materials such as sandbags. Also, be sure to elevate electrical systems such as extension cords above the region's flood level. You can also utilize cinder blocks to raise your appliances and most valuable assets above anticipated flood levels.
  • Select fast-drying material. Carpeting and wet drywall are susceptible to damage from mold. These porous-surfaced building materials normally require discarding after flooding due to contaminants and mold growth. Build or replace with stone products, tile and noncardboard backed gypsum materials. 

To ensure your Oak Lawn commercial property can withstand water damage resulting from floods be sure to implement the strategies outlined above.  Post flooding, the most urgent action is to extract the standing water from the premises. Our company has the equipment, training, and expertise to dry out your building, repair material damage, clean, and sanitize your business. Our IICRC-certified professionals are skilled in thoroughly restoring your property to its previous safe, sanitary condition. "Like it never even happened." Let's get you open for business.

Fire Damage in Oak Lawn, IL

7/27/2018 (Permalink)


Our crews are trained to handle residential and commercial fire damage restoration

What to do after a fire in your home or business

When a fire happens in your home or business, lives are suddenly turned around.  Recovery can be a mentally and physically draining process.  So who do you contact and where do you begin?

  1. Contact your insurance company for detailed instructions on temporary housing, protecting the property, and conducting inventory.  They will recommend a fire damage restoration company such as SERVPRO of Oak Lawn who are experienced with the process.
  2. Before you enter your residence, make sure it is safe. Check with the fire department to make sure there was no structural damage caused by the fire.  They should also see that the utilities are disconnected before they leave or are safe to use.
  3.  Conduct an inventory of damaged property and items. Take photographs of everything you can. Do not throw anything away until this has been done.
  4. If possible, locate your valuable documents and records. 
  5. Be sure to let your local police department know if you are not going to be staying in your home while the repairs are made.
  6. Save any receipts for money you spend related to the fire loss.  Your insurance company may need them later for verification.
  7. Notify your mortgage company of the fire.

For more tips and information on fires, you can check out the U.S. Fire Administration website. 

Commercial Fire Damage Emergency Services

7/27/2018 (Permalink)

For many small business owners, their small business is their livelihood. Any disaster that happens to hurt the company can be detrimental the owner’s finances in a huge way. One of the most common issues that many business owners face is commercial fire damage . There are many ways in which fire can affect your business. However, there are steps that a company can take both before and after fire damage occurs to mitigate any damage that a fire may cause.

Fire Prevention

Although it seems obvious, being able to prevent fire damage from occurring is the best defense against fire.  There are many things that a business can do to increase their first line against fire issues.  First, always use the highest quality building materials possible. Many new building materials are much more fire resistant and can end up saving a lot of money.  They may be more expensive to put in, but if a fire occurs, they can help save thousands of dollars in repairs.  Also, if your facility has a lot of employees, be sure to have safety meetings and discuss the ways they can reduce the likelihood of a fire taking place.  For example, a cigarette should be disposed of properly rather than just throwing it on the ground or in a trash can.  These steps can go a long way in reducing the chances of a fire.  However, at the end of the day even if a business takes the necessary precautions, a fire may still occur.  It is important to have a good plan in place and a company that you trust to help clean up the fire damages.

Fire Damage

Some business owners may thing that fire damage is something that will easily be cleaned up.  However, there are often several layers of issues that the small business owner faces in the aftermath.  Flames in a fire can cause damage to the exterior and the interior of the building.  Sometimes there may even be structural damage as well.  The damage caused by fire and smoke are a significant issue.  Many people may feel as though the smoke just smells bad but it can cause long term damage as well.  It is important that you work with a quality experienced restoration company to restore the building that was damaged.

Mold Cleanup In Worth, IL

7/27/2018 (Permalink)

Mold growth can begin anywhere from 2-3 days after a storm causes water damage.  The mold is a harmful issue, and it can negatively affect your health, house, and the contents within your home.  As the length of exposure to storm water damage increases, the chance for air spores that spread mold also escalates. Mold remediation becomes more challenging as the signs of mold growth that include musty odors, and discolored surfaces, become more apparent.

Act Fast

Our highly trained mold removal technicians use the latest technology and tools to quickly address your mold problem in a manner that effectively removes mold colonies. Unlike DIY techniques, our SERVPRO professional service does not carry the risk of improperly removing mold, in this way, expediting a more rapid return to a healthy home environment.  We are also trained and licensed to handle lead, asbestos and other dangerous materials that may show up during the mold removal process.

We are available 24 per day. Before your appointment, be sure to:

  • Inventory damaged and missing goods for your insurance claim.
  • Throw away all sealed and unsealed food and beverage contacted by storm flood waters. 
  • Open windows and doors.
  • Refrain from using electrical devices until it is safe.
  • Remove standing water when possible.
  • Use dehumidifiers and fans to ventilate your home; SERVPRO can perform this task upon arrival.

Our mold remediation technician will also determine if any contents in your home are salvageable.  Porous items that are wet for over 48 hours and cannot be completely dried and cleaned must be disposed of.

This list includes carpet, carpet padding, ceiling tiles, clothing, drywall, floor tiles, insulation, leather goods, paper, upholstery, wallpaper and wood items.

When our mold remediation expert arrives, he will:

  • Apply biocides.
  • Decide whether or not you can stay in your house during the mold remediation process.
  • Determine if additional ventilation and containment is needed.
  • Look for mold in the HVAC system and biological hazards in the home.
  • Test for any additional mold after the mold remediation process.
  • Use quick structural drying techniques.

Here are some more helpful links on mold:

EPA Mold Guide

IICRC 5 Principles to Mold Remediation

Damage From Sump Pump Failure In Oak Lawn, IL

7/27/2018 (Permalink)

If you have a basement, your sump pump is often your last line of defense against  flooding.  It works by safely diverting water away from your house and is especially important during times of heavy rain when it puts your home at risk of water damage.  If your sump pump fails, you could find your basement under water.  When this happens, it is important to act fast! Water damage can be a progressive issue and if not dealt with in a timely manner, this could lead to structural damage, mold and much more.

Is My Sump Pump Working? Tips to Avoid Water Damage

  1. It is important to make sure your sump pump is in working order.  Otherwise you risk the chance that It could fail when you need it most.
  2. After heavy rains, check the sump pump inlet screen for any blockages, one of the leading causes of sump pump failure.
  3.  Occasionally, test your sump pump to ensure it is working properly. You can do this by filling the pit with water and watch to see if it is pumped away.  If not, you may have a problem.
  4.  Check the float control to make sure it is free and not restricted or hung up.
  5.  Replace the battery backup every 2-3 years.  The last thing you need is to find out your batter backup is dead in the middle of a power outage during a big storm. 

Locally Owned Company with National Storm Resources

We live and work in this community too; we might even be neighbors. As a locally owned and operated business, SERVPRO of Oak Lawn is close by and ready to respond to your flood or storm damage emergency. We are proud to be an active member of the Oak Lawn community and want to do our part to make our community the best it can be.

When The Severe Storm Rolls Out, We Roll In

6/21/2018 (Permalink)

Unexpected emergencies like severe weather call for immediate action. SERVPRO of Oak Lawn knows immediate reaction to the disaster is important to helping you get your life back to normal. 

Utilizing our 1-4-8 Service Response Guidelines we strive to:

  • Contact you within 1 hour from notice of loss to arrange for your service. 
  • Be-on-site to begin mitigation services within 4 hours of notification.
  • Provide verbal briefing of scope to you within 8 business hour of on-site arrival. 

Exceptions to our 1-4-8 Service Response times may apply under certain conditions, such as a local catastrophic event or storm situation. 

We also perform pack-out services, which is removing salvageable personal property from the affected area for off-site cleaning and storage.

If you have storm damage to your home or property, call us today (708)239-1444.  Timely mitigation is the key to minimize secondary damages caused by severe storms.  

Fire Damage Restoration Versus Replace

6/19/2018 (Permalink)

The first 48 hours after fire damage occurs can make the difference between restoring versus replacing your property and personal belongings.  SERVPRO of Oak Lawn can help prevent fire damage from creating long-term problems.  Our trained professionals provide timely response with mitigation services ranging from fire, smoke and soot removal to contents claims inventory and document restoration.  These services help ensure your property, belongings and memories are restored to preloss condition when possible.  

A back draft of emotions often sweeps over the homeowners after a fire ravages a home.  Fear, uncertainty, stress and doubt about the future of the property can overwhelm the homeowner long after the flames have been extinguished and the smoke has cleared. 

After the first wave of heroes have rescued the property, let SERVPRO of Oak Lawn help you restore it.  

So, before you risk doing further damage by attempting to clean up the damage yourself, call us today (708) 239-1444. 

Does Your Alsip Home Have A Mold Problem?

6/16/2018 (Permalink)

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 hits 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 you have visible mold in your home or business, we can inspect and assess your property and remediate your mold infestation. 

It's The Water You Don't See

6/11/2018 (Permalink)

Your home is your safe haven and should be a place of rest.  But when water begins leaking-even small leaks in areas you can't see-your home could quickly become a source of stress.  The possibility of harmful mold, rot and unseen damage may affect the value of your home and the health of loved ones.  

SERVPRO of Oak Lawn understands how disruptive water damages can be for your entire family and will help ensure the water is identified, regardless of where it hides.  That's why we offer 24-hour emergency response by trained, uniformed professionals.  With top-of-the-line equipment and time-tested cleanup and restoration techniques, we have the expertise to help make your house feel like a home again. 

After all, when it comes to your home and your family, even small disasters can feel like huge problems.  So if water damage occurs in your home, just call (708) 239-1444 and we will be there to help make it "Like it never even happened."

Water In The Hallway, Not One Single Day Of Classes Missed

6/1/2018 (Permalink)

At SERVPRO of Oak Lawn, we believe learning shouldn't be paused or canceled, even in the face of disaster.  Disasters at an educational facility are highly complex and require a knowledgeable and flexible response.  Whether we're dealing with a small school or a campus of higher education, we work quickly to assess each unique situation and isolate the damaged area so that normal operations can continue while we restore your facility.  Our professionals are trained to be mindful of legal and environmental concerns and strive to fully restore the damaged area.  Your job is to provide valuable lessons and information to the students; ours is to make sure you have a safe place to do so. 

Our experience in handling educational facilities cleanups has given us the ability to provide a variety of detailed services for the following educational facilities: 

  • K-12 Schools
  • Colleges & Universities
  • Dormitories
  • Event and Sporting Arenas
  • Libraries
  • Day Care / Pre-K Facilities

Mold On The Outside of Your Home

5/30/2018 (Permalink)

When you think of places where mold may grow, what is the first thing that comes to your mind? Perhaps a damp, dark basement or crawlspace?  While this may be one of the most common places, your home's exterior siding may also be susceptible to mold growth.  

Causes of Mold on Siding

Excessive humidity and moisture can create an attractive environment for mold growth on several kinds of siding, including low-maintenance vinyl.  Siding is designed to allow rainwater and other types of moisture to run off the exterior of your home, but sometimes otherwise durable siding can have mold growth under certain conditions.  Since some moldy types may need humidity to grow, warm and humid weather conditions can cause a mold outbreak on your siding.  

Mold likes darkness which can also play a role.  This means that the shady sides of your house maybe at risk.  These areas will tend to be the slowest to dry out after heavy rains so moisture levels will remain higher.  

Vinyl Siding Mold Removal and Prevention

First, keep your siding clean of dirt and grime. You can use a simple garden hose or pressure washer to do this.  

Second, try to target the trees and shrubs that are located around your house.   Check to make sure they do not have any contact with your siding.  Regularly trim your trees and shrubs to minimize shaded areas that can encourage mold growth.  

Finally, take steps to reduce the amount of moisture that comes into contact with your siding.  If you regularly water your lawn, be sure to adjust sprinklers so the water does not hit your house.  Check gutters in the spring and fall and make sure they are clean and in working order.  Clogged gutters can cause the rainwater to run down the side of the home and this can increase the moisture level. 

For any serious mold problems, don't hesitate to call in the professionals at SERVPRO of Oak Lawn.  (708) 239-1444

Commercial Water Damage Can Happen Even On Weekends

5/30/2018 (Permalink)

Water damage does not take weekends off.

Usually, many office buildings are unoccupied over the weekend.  A water leak that happens on a Friday, that no one notices, can turn into a huge flooding problem my Monday morning. 

Recognizing a Water Leak

Faulty toilets or leaking pipes can escalate into something more serious if they are not noticed or repaired in time.  Here are a few tips to identify signs you may have leaking water:

  • Listen carefully for sounds of dripping or water coming from faucets or toilets.  If the water has been shut off and you are still hearing dripping, this may be a sign of a faulty and time to call a plumber. 
  • Have your employees do a quick check of the ceilings and floors in their work areas.  Wet carpet maybe a sign of a plumbing leak. 
  • If you notice a drop in water pressure, this may also be a sign that there is water leaking somewhere in the building.  
  • Check toilets regularly for any faulty supply lines. 

A water leak in your place of business if left untreated can cause substantial damage.  By catching leaks early, you can protect your business better.  If you do encounter water damage, call SERVPRO of Oak Lawn today. (708)239-1444

Water In Your Crawl Space

5/30/2018 (Permalink)

The most common call we get after heavy rains is homeowners who have water in their crawlspace.  A crawl space should not take on water or be damp and needs to be addressed quickly.  A wet crawl space can lead to mold and musty odors.  

A homeowner can get water in their crawlspace from a number of different sources:

  • ground water or rainwater that seeps into the crawlspace
  • cracks in the foundation
  • drainage tile issues
  • gutter or downspout systems are not working properly
  • sump pump failing

If you do have water in your crawlspace, it needs to be removed as soon as possible.  This will help ensure there is not mold growth.  The professionals at SERVPRO of Oak Lawn can help.  Call us today if you have water in your home (708)239-1444. 

Electrical Safety During a Flood

4/24/2018 (Permalink)

There are many risks associated with flooding.  One of them is the danger associated with your electrical system.  It is critically important to treat all electrical appliances, equipment and outlets with caution.  Here are a few safety tips: 

  • Never step into standing water that has covered electrical outlets or devices-the water could already be charged with electric current.  
  • If there are downed power lines in your area, you should avoid them and notify your local power company.
  • Avoid areas where there are sparks or if you hear popping or buzzing noises. 
  • If you smell something that resembles plastic burning, this could indicate an electrical fire.

After any flooding event, you should consult a certified electrician to determine the extent of damage to your electrical system.  

Sewage Cleanup in Oak Lawn

4/12/2018 (Permalink)

A sewage backup in your home or business can be a stressful nightmare.  In just a matter of minutes, your home can be suddenly overwhelmed with water contaminated with waste and bacteria.  When a sewage backup or overflow happens, cleaning it up quickly is very important. 

Our technicians are certified to clean up sewage backups safely.  They will do so with the following steps: 

1. Remove sewage and water. By utilizing special equipment including commercial grade vacuums and pumps, toxic water is safely removed from the premises. 

2. Removing contaminated property. Our crew will safely remove any items that have been affected by the sewage water. This may include furniture, carpet and any other items the contaminated water may have touched.  

3.  Drying out the home. Professional-grade air movers will be brought in to dry out any affected areas. 

4. Sanitizing. By doing a thorough cleaning of the affected areas, this will help prevent the spread of anything harmful that may have been in the contaminated water. Proper treatment of the areas is also necessary to prevent mold growth.  

If your home has been affected by a sewage backup and you need assistance, call us today (708) 239-1444

Commercial Fire Cleaning in Chicago Ridge

4/12/2018 (Permalink)

Call SERVPRO for Your Chicago Ridge Commercial Fire Damage

Commercial fire damage is one of the most devastating experiences that a business owner can experience in Chicago Ridge. In addition to doing severe damage to the structure of the building, fires can lead to excessive, standing water on the property as well as mold invasions. For these reasons and more, business leaders find it difficult to recover from a natural disaster or man-made accident. This is even the case when the business owner is an industry expert who manages the daily operations prudently. However, learning more about commercial fires and how fire damage remediation specialists can assist you is the first step towards limiting damages and preserving your equilibrium in the face of the disaster. Gather information you need regarding how to grapple with a fire by reviewing the data outlined below:

Fire Threats. There are several factors that can place a commercial property in harm’s way leading to burning and fire damage.  Some of these include:

  • lightning strike
  • electrical fire
  • blown fuse, overloaded circuits
  • an adjoining business fire

Preventing Commercial Fire Damage and Strategies You Can Use:

In addition to purchasing business interruption insurance, there are several strategies you can implement to decrease the impact of fire damage to your Chicago Ridge business. Some of them include:

  • Avoiding the storage of flammable items on site
  • Check your smoke alarms regularly to ensure they are functioning properly
  • Have your fire extinguishers in accessible areas
  • Implement a fire evacuation plan
  • Turn off appliances and machinery when no one is on site.
  • Ensure all machinery is in good condition
  • Have backup drives for computers
  • Important paperwork should be kept in a fireproof safe
  • Use a cloud for document back up storage

Call SERVPRO today for your commercial fire damage. We are here 24/7 365 days a year.

Spring Maintenance

3/15/2018 (Permalink)

Spring is just around the corner! Many homeowners believe that spring maintenance is just about cleaning.  Of course, spring cleaning is a big part of a spring home maintenance schedule, but overall maintenance of the structure and appliance is also important.  All homeowners love to see spotless windows on the first sunny 70 degree day, but don't forget your roof and the ice dams that may have formed over the winter.  

Spring Maintenance Checklist

  • Gutters and downspouts: Check your gutters and downspouts for leaves and debris that have collected over the fall and winter. You can also run a hose on your roof and check for proper drainage.  If you happen to find a leak, dry the area and make sure it is sealed up properly with caulk or epoxy. 
  • Siding: Clean your siding to prevent mold from growing.  Check any wood surfaces for weathering and pant chipping. If wood is showing through, sand the area, prime and paint.  
  • Exterior Caulking: Inspect caulking and replace if deteriorating.  Recaulk areas if needed. 
  • Window Sills, Door Sills, and Thresholds: Fill cracks, caulk edges or replace if you need to. 
  • Window and Door Screens: Clean your screens and check for holes.  If you have any holes that are bigger than a quarter, patch the holes or replace the screen.  Otherwise you might end up with bugs in your home when your windows are open. 
  • Deck and Porches: Check your railings on your deck and porch to make sure they are not loose.  

By following some simple home maintenance tips each season, you can ensure your home is running properly year round. 

Frozen Pipe Water Damage In Oak Lawn

1/17/2018 (Permalink)

Winter is here! While we have been lucky to have mostly above average temperatures so far, this season, cold weather is predicted in our near forecast. This means it’s time to keep an eye on your pipes when the temperatures do drop below freezing. 

Here are a few tips to remember:

  • Check around your home or business for areas where water supply lines are in unheated areas. Wrap exposed pipes with foam, insulated materials or pipe heating cables. Watch these locations on a daily basis when temperatures is below 32 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • If you are going out of town, and you suspect that temperatures will drop, turn off the water to your home and open all the taps to drain the water system. Set your temperature no lower than 55° F.
  • Unhook the water hoses from the exterior of the home and bring them inside, to maintain their life.
  • Drip your faucets, to reduce the build-up of pressure in the pipes during an arctic blast weather advisory.
  • Keep garage doors closed if there are water supply lines in the garage.
  • Keep the thermostat set to the same temperature both during the day and at night. By suspending the use of lower nighttime temperatures, you may incur a higher heating bill, but you can prevent a much costlier repair job if pipes freeze and burst
  • Open cabinet doors when temperatures are below 32 degrees Fahrenheit. The warm air can circulate around the pipes and prevent the water from freezing.

Popular Locations of Frozen Pipes:

  • Outside wall
  • Under a sink
  • Unheated crawlspace or basement
  • Outside water spigot
  • Swimming pool supply lines
  • Water sprinkler lines
  • Attics
  • Garages

Tips on Thawing Frozen Pipes:

  • If a pipe bursts before it is thawed, immediately shut off the water at the water main to prevent further damage!
  • Frozen but not ruptured? If you turn on the faucet and the water doesn’t come out or comes out in a trickle, your pipes are probably frozen. You need to act quickly to thaw the frozen pipe before it bursts.
  • Identify the frozen water supply pipe.
  • Open a faucet supplied by the frozen line, even if you have not found the frozen spot.
  • To find the blockage, follow the pipe back from the faucet to where it runs through cold areas such as an exterior wall, unheated crawl space or in some cases an unheated basement if the pipe is near an outside wall.
  • Often the frozen area of the pipe will be frosted or have ice on it. If the situation is getting critical the pipe may be slightly bulged or look slightly fissured.

Frozen Pipe Behind a Wall:

  • Leave the main water valve near your water meter open when thawing the pipe.
  • If the frozen pipe is behind a wall or ceiling, you’ve got a challenge on your hands. You have three choices:
  • Turn up the heat in the house and wait.
  • Use an infrared lamp or lamps to heat the wall where you think the frozen area is located. Infrared lamps are better than regular heat lamps because the heat passes through the air without heating it, directing more energy to warming the wall and frozen pipe.
  • Tear out part of the wall or ceiling to get at the frozen section of pipe. Then thaw the pipe as an exposed pipe.

If Your Pipes Burst…

  • Turn off the water supply. Locate your water shut off valve and turn off the main water shut-off valve. You should find this in the basement or where the service pipe enters your home. Drain the system by turning on all your cold-water valves.

What You Can Do to Manage the Damage (until we get there):

  • Water Buckets. If you notice the leak quickly you can catch dripping water in buckets.
  • Make a hole in the ceiling to let water out.
  • Turn off electronics/appliances
  • Open Drawers, closets and cabinet doors to in enhance drying.

 Call us today (708) 239-1444

Save Money With These Tips

1/4/2018 (Permalink)

Your home is likely your biggest investment, and requires routine maintenance to keep it in good shape. Some things can be tackled on an annual basis while others should be done monthly. Here is our suggested list to keep your home running smoothly though out the year. 

Monthly

Frequently used items require regular attention.  Clean out your garbage disposal and regularly replace air filters. You should also periodically check your roof for leaks.

Seasonally

A seasonal checklist is easiest during mild weather.  Commit to a few simple things like trimming trees and shrubs away from your home's exterior.  While you are out there, check our gutters and clean out any leaves or debris that can lead to water backup.

Also, take a moment to inspect the weatherstripping that is around windows and doors.  If you see cracks or broken seals, this is an easy replacement that will save money on heating and cooling costs. 

Annually

Inspect all your fire extinguishers and make sure they are up to date and fully pressurized.  Set aside one day a year to do things like schedule a chimney cleaning and have your HVAC system inspected. 

Organizing home maintenance tasks into a manageable schedule can help your prioritize prevention and save you money in the long run. 

Need a Holiday Gift Idea?

12/21/2017 (Permalink)

If you are stumped about what to get your family as a gift this holiday season, we may have the perfect idea.  New smoke detectors! Now, this might not be very exciting but it is important and can save lives and homes. 

SERVPRO knows that smoke detectors are crucial in early fire detection.  According to U.S Fire Statistics, in 2013 there were 1,240,000 fires which resulted in 3,240 deaths and 15,925 injuries.  Losses were recorded at $11.5 billion.  Of these statistics, 60% of them occur during fires in which no working smoke alarm is present.  

While we do not like to think of our family falling victim to a fire, but the truth is we never know when or how a fire can happen.  Most of the time, fires do not start in the most obvious ways and can start due to overheated outlets, old wires or extension cords and many other ways.  

During the busy holiday season, take a few minutes to review fire safety with your family. This is especially important if you are entertaining guests in your home. Be sure to test your current smoke detectors to make sure they are working to give you some peace of mind that you do have early detection warnings in place.

Have a safe and happy holiday from your friends at SERVPRO of Oak Lawn! 

Chicago Ridge Commercial Emergency Restoration

11/16/2017 (Permalink)

Commercial Building Restoration Services

When flooding or fires happen, they may occur at your office or business. Who do you call? Being prepared is the first step and may score you brownie points with your boss if you know the right company to call in an emergency. 

SERVPRO of Oak Lawn is available 24 hours a day to restore your Oak Lawn commercial property and get you back to business. We have the expertise, equipment, and highly trained personnel to handle your commercial water, fire, or mold damage. We can also access the resources of our national network of 1,650 Franchises to handle large commercial projects and major storm events. Learn more about our commercial restoration services:

Winter Storm Preparations

11/7/2017 (Permalink)

More often than not, as homeowners, the last thing we want to do is home repairs.  Not only do they take time (and many of us don't have a lot to spare), but they can also be costly and sometimes tedious.  Small repairs such as changing a light bulb or fixing a leaky faucet can be put off until it is absolutely necessary to fix, but there are some repairs that should never be put off.  Unfortunately, many of these involve major things (and can come with an even more major price tag), but avoiding the two repairs listed below could actually cause bigger problems down the road when the cold freezing temperatures and snow hit us shortly.  

Roof Issues

Every home has a roof.  This is one of the most important parts of any building because it protects what is inside.  The roof is a major player when it comes to keeping up on repairs.  If you notice any leaks, missing or damaged shingles/tiles or any kind of sagging this should be fixed as soon as possible.  Leaks mean water will get into your home and then may lead to mold, structure damage and even possibly fire if it comes in contact with anything electrical.  Missing or damaged shingles can lead to a number of issues if not fixed and create weak spots in a roof  A sagging roof could signify moisture in the attic and could be a sign of poor ventilation, broken or cracked joists, rafters or the ridge line itself.  

Foundation Issues

The foundation of your home is extremely important-it holds up your home's entire structure.  Cracks in the foundation are definitely something not to overlook when it comes to repairs. The last thing you want as a homeowner is for a crack to spread.  Checking your home's foundation in the fall will help prevent water from thawing snow or ice getting into your home in the spring.  

Plumbing Issues

Water anywhere other than in a pipe or sink basin is bad, especially for your home.  Plumbing issues and leaks anywhere in your property should be addressed as soon as possible.  Winter in the Chicago area is known for its below freezing temperatures.  This can sometimes take a toll on the plumbing and pipes in your home.  Checking them now will be a great step towards prevention. 

Water Damage Advice For Oak Lawn

11/7/2017 (Permalink)

Although there is a variety of potential problems that property owners in Oak lawn dread, water damage typically tops the list. Oak Lawn water damage can result from different factors, including heavy rain, snow, natural disasters, a leaky pipe or appliance. Irrespective of the cause, water damage ramifications are issues that residential property owners need to understand thoroughly. To get a basic understanding of what water damage is and how it should be addressed, refer to the following quick reference guide:

Water damage: Identifying Some of The Causes from This Short List.

• leaky dishwashers
• broken pipes
• overflowing washing machines
• plumbing leaks
• foundation cracks or a damaged roof
• floods
• heavy rain

Categories of Water That Cause Water Damage

As water damage restoration specialists from SERVPRO know, there are several categories of water leading to water damage. The concern for the rate of water removal escalates as the Category number increases. Category 1 is clean water, and this is a type of water that poses no serious threat to people. This is drinking water (potable) that is in a place it should not be. Category 2 is gray water, and this type of water is contaminated and can cause illness when ingested. This may be soapy dishwater, standing water on a floor or waste water containing urine. Category 3 is black water. This type of water is unsanitary and dangerous because it contains bacteria that can cause sickness. Black water results from sewage issues and standing water that has been contaminated. This category of water requires immediate water removal.

Water Damage: The Restoration Process

Water damage restoration is an important process. When done expediently by expert technicians from SERVPRO, water restoration enables residential owners to minimize the adverse effects to their personal belongings and lessen or prevent structural damage. However, the efficacy of their efforts is typically contingent upon the amount of water that caused the damage as well as the severity of the damage. These water removal specialists will use special equipment and proven methodologies to control water damage and limit its debilitating effects.

Although water damage can be a difficult situation, securing the services of a professional water damage restoration company like SERVPRO takes the pressure off of you. It allows you to sit back and watch how your home in Hickory Hills is restored to its pre-water damaged condition. If you need our services, we are only minutes away from your property.

Flooded Basement Cleanup in Alsip IL

10/10/2017 (Permalink)

A basement can flood at any time, although flooding most often occurs during heavy rainfall. Basements are 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 Alsip basement could flood, including: 

  • A sewer pipe that is blocked or cracked
  • Surface water from heavy rains that can 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

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. 

If you have questions call us 24/7 (708) 239-1444.

Fire Extinguisher Importance For Your Home or Business

10/10/2017 (Permalink)

Office buildings need specific fire safety equipment to keep both employees and clients safe. This includes smoke detectors, sprinklers, fire alarms, and extinguishers.  

The first step in fire damage restoration is to put out the fire using the proper tools.  A first responder may use an approved portable fire extinguisher to prevent a small fire from growing and causing further damage.  

The National Fire Protection Agency publishes a series of standards and requirements for portable fire extinguishers called NFPA 10, available here.

No matter what the size of the fire, your first priority should be to get everyone out safely and call 911.  Once the fire has been put out, you can call SERVPRO of Oak Lawn (708) 239-1444 to assist with the fire damage restoration.  

Here is a link for another great resource on why you should buy a fire extinguisher for your home. 

Handling Water Damage and Leaks in Hickory Hills IL

10/10/2017 (Permalink)

How to Handle Water Leaks and Floods in Your Home

Hickory Hills water damage can be a real problem if there is a leak or flood in your home. Water can easily destroy the walls, floors and structure of your house. It can cause dangerous mold to grow. It can ruin personal possessions and appliances. You should know what to do when faced with a water leak or flood.


Try To Stop the Leak
The first step is to try to stop the leak. Find the source of the water. If there are shutoff valves nearby, then turn them off to stop the flow of water. Alternately, you could turn off the water mains to the entire house. If neither of these steps is an option, then you might be able to seal off the source of the leak with duct tape, rags or other materials. Attempt to do this only if you can walk safely through the water.


Stop the Water from Spreading
If your home is flooding, then try to stop the water from spreading. You can use sandbags, towels or other items to create a barrier that the water cannot pass through. This will help even if you can just slow the water down a little from flowing freely into your home. You could also attempt to put down towels if the water is very shallow. This will help to limit the amount of water damage.


Get Your Possessions off The Ground
If you have possessions on the ground where the water is leaking, then pick them up. Pick up rugs, furniture and anything else. You do not want the water to destroy those items. Additionally, porous items like paper, fabrics or wood can become sources of mold after the water stops leaking. Put your items somewhere high up so that they are not in danger. Hang up any wet or soaked items to dry if possible.


Contact a Restoration Service
You should contact a restoration service like SERVPRO as soon as you realize that there is a leak and have stabilized the situation. These professionals will come into your home, remove the water and start dealing with the damage. They can dry out you floors, walls, and some personal possessions. They can also remove damaged parts of the home that are not salvageable. Restoration services are critical for recovering from water, leaks or floods..


Take Preventative Action
You want to take some preventative action after the restoration company has finished. You want to inspect your plumbing regularly. Check and maintain your appliances. Have your roof checked for damage on an annual basis. Keep the number for the restoration company handy just in case. These steps will reduce the chance that you will have to deal with serious water damage again in the future.

Mold Remediation-After The Storm Is Over

10/10/2017 (Permalink)

Information on Mold Remediation in Alsip

Mold growth can begin anywhere from 2-3 days after a storm causes water damage.  The mold is a harmful issue, and it can negatively affect your health, house, and the contents within your home.  As the length of exposure to storm water damage increases, the chance for air spores that spread mold also escalates. Mold remediation becomes more challenging as the signs of mold growth that include musty odors, and discolored surfaces, become more apparent.

Act Fast

Our highly trained mold removal technicians use the latest technology and tools to quickly address your mold problem in a manner that effectively removes mold colonies. Unlike DIY techniques, our SERVPRO professional service does not carry the risk of improperly removing mold, in this way, expediting a more rapid return to a healthy home environment.  We are also trained and licensed to handle lead, asbestos and other dangerous materials that may show up during the mold removal process.

We are available 24 per day. Before your appointment, be sure to:

  • Inventory damaged and missing goods for your insurance claim.
  • Throw away all sealed and unsealed food and beverage contacted by storm flood waters. 
  • Open windows and doors.
  • Refrain from using electrical devices until it is safe.
  • Remove standing water when possible.
  • Use dehumidifiers and fans to ventilate your home; SERVPRO can perform this task upon arrival.

Our mold remediation technician will also determine if any contents in your home are salvageable.  Porous items that are wet for over 48 hours and cannot be completely dried and cleaned must be disposed of.

This list includes carpet, carpet padding, ceiling tiles, clothing, drywall, floor tiles, insulation, leather goods, paper, upholstery, wallpaper and wood items.

When our mold remediation expert arrives, he will:

  • Apply biocides.
  • Decide whether or not you can stay in your house during the mold remediation process.
  • Determine if additional ventilation and containment is needed.
  • Look for mold in the HVAC system and biological hazards in the home.
  • Test for any additional mold after the mold remediation process.
  • Use quick structural drying techniques.

Here are some more helpful links on mold:

EPA Mold Guide

IICRC 5 Principles to Mold Remediation

Mold In Your Bathroom

10/10/2017 (Permalink)

If you have seen mold in your bathroom, this may cause you to worry.  Showers and baths can create lingering moisture. Without the proper ventilation, excess moisture can cause mold to grow. Also, if you have a leak in your pipes behind the walls that you can't see, this can contribute to mold growth.  

A few simple steps to prevent mold in your bathroom: 

  1. Properly ventilate your bathroom. If you have a fan, make sure it is on or open a window while you shower or take a bath. 
  2. After you are finished, allow the fan to run for at least 30 minutes to allow air to circulate. 
  3. Use mildew-resistant shower and window curtains. 
  4. Wipe down your shower after use to remove any lingering moisture. 
  5. Once a month, wash your shower curtain.
  6. Damp laundry should not be left on the floor. 
  7. If you notice any leaks, try to get them repaired ASAP.

If you suspect mold, we can come inspect it for you. Call us today 708-239-1444.

SERVPRO Recognizes National Preparedness Month

9/12/2017 (Permalink)

“Disasters Don’t Plan Ahead. You Can.”

Reminder to Home and Business Owners:

“Disasters Don’t Plan Ahead. You Can.”

Alsip, IL (Grassroots Newswire) August 23, 2017 - September is National Preparedness Month (http://www.ready.gov/September), an annual event sponsored by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to raise awareness about the importance of preparing—in advance—for the unexpected. In support of this initiative, Chuck Williams, owner of SERVPRO® of Oak Lawn, encourages Alsip property owners to take the following two steps now to protect their family, home, and business in the aftermath of a disaster.

  1. Review and update your emergency preparedness plan, including business and life continuity plans. If you don’t yet have a plan, use the tools provided by FEMA to get started. (https://www.ready.gov/make-a-plan)
  1. Collect and store time-critical information, like the location of shutoff valves, fire suppression system controls, and emergency contact numbers electronically, where it is immediately available to assist first responders.

“Evacuation plans and emergency supply kits help you survive a disaster, but a comprehensive emergency preparedness plan helps you recover from a disaster,” said Williams. “The most effective response to any emergency is a fast response. That’s why having critical system and contact information at your fingertips is so important. A quick and effective response helps minimize repairs and downtime, helping both businesses and families get back on track in less time, with less stress.”

SERVPRO offers tools for both commercial and residential property owners to help them minimize damage and recover quickly from emergencies. The SERVPRO READY app stores essential contact and property information electronically where it can be accessed with a mobile device in seconds if disaster strikes. Both home and business owners can download the free app at https://ready.SERVPRO.com/home/mobileapp. Local business owners can take an additional preparedness step by designating SERVPRO of Oak Lawn as their disaster mitigation and restoration provider. SERVPRO professionals will conduct a no-cost assessment of the facility and assist the owner in completing a comprehensive Emergency READY Profile® (ERP) and storing that profile in the READY app.

“Rapid response from a disaster cleanup and restoration specialist can help the property owner evaluate options, start the insurance process, and take the right steps from the beginning to bring their property back to normal,” said Williams. “Even in the confusion and panic that often surround a disaster, a property owner or manager using the SERVPRO READY app can reach out for expert help right from the scene, using a cell phone.”

SERVPRO® of Oak Lawn specializes in disaster restoration, cleanup and repair services, helping to remediate damage, making it “Like it never even happened,” for both commercial and residential customers. For more information on SERVPRO® of Oak Lawn, please contact us at (708) 239-1444 or Office@SERVPROoaklawn.com. For more information on SERVPRO® and the SERVPRO® Emergency READY Program, please visit www.ready.SERVPRO.com.

About SERVPRO®

Founded in 1967, the SERVPRO® Franchise System is a leader and provider of fire and water cleanup and restoration services and mold mitigation and remediation. SERVPRO’s professional services network of more than 1,700 individually owned and operated Franchises responds to property damage emergencies ranging from small individual disasters to multi-million dollar large-loss events. Providing coverage in the United States and Canada, the SERVPRO® System has established relationships with major insurance companies and commercial clients, as well as individual homeowners.

Commercial Fire Damage in Chicago Ridge

8/28/2017 (Permalink)

Call SERVPRO for Your Chicago Ridge Commercial Fire Damage

Commercial fire damage is one of the most devastating experiences that a business owner can experience in Chicago Ridge. In addition to doing severe damage to the structure of the building, fires can lead to excessive, standing water on the property as well as mold invasions. For these reasons and more, business leaders find it difficult to recover from a natural disaster or man-made accident. This is even the case when the business owner is an industry expert who manages the daily operations prudently. However, learning more about commercial fires and how fire damage remediation specialists can assist you is the first step towards limiting damages and preserving your equilibrium in the face of the disaster. Gather information you need regarding how to grapple with a fire by reviewing the data outlined below:

Fire Threats. There are several factors that can place a commercial property in harm’s way leading to burning and fire damage.  Some of these include:

  • lightning strike
  • electrical fire
  • blown fuse, overloaded circuits
  • an adjoining business fire

Preventing Commercial Fire Damage and Strategies You Can Use:

In addition to purchasing business interruption insurance, there are several strategies you can implement to decrease the impact of fire damage to your Chicago Ridge business. Some of them include:

  • Avoiding the storage of flammable items on site
  • Check your smoke alarms regularly to ensure they are functioning properly
  • Have your fire extinguishers in accessible areas
  • Implement a fire evacuation plan
  • Turn off appliances and machinery when no one is on site.
  • Ensure all machinery is in good condition
  • Have backup drives for computers
  • Important paperwork should be kept in a fireproof safe
  • Use a cloud for document back up storage

Call SERVPRO today for your commercial fire damage. We are here 24/7 365 days a year.

Flooding in Your Oak Lawn Business

8/28/2017 (Permalink)

The weather has been very unpredictable the past few weeks in our area.  We have experience heavy rains in a short period of time causing the sewer systems to back up and streets to flood. 

If you see there is a flash flood watch, this means that a flash flood is possible.  A flash flood warning means that a flood is about to happen or already taking place.  If a flash flood occurs, you should make sure everyone gets to higher ground as quickly as possible. 

Your business can prepare for any potential disaster, including flash floods. Keep all essential equipment and documents elevated from the floor.  Ideally, they should be stored on the second floor of the building or higher.  Back-up electronic data daily to cloud storage or to an external drive so the files can still be accessed in the event of a disaster.  

It is a good idea to have a battery-powered radio available on-site.  In case of a power outage, you and your staff can keep updated on the current conditions.  (FEMA) The Federal Emergency Management Agency provides a list of recommended supplies in the event of a disaster, such as a flashlight and first aid kit. 

You can also check with the National Weather Service to get more tips on safety during flooding

SERVPRO of Oak Lawn can help your business get back on track after flooding or other disasters.  Call us today for more information or a free inspection (708) 239-1444

SERVPRO Acts Fast With Water Extraction Services In Chicago Ridge

8/3/2017 (Permalink)

SERVPRO is ready to respond to any emergency around the clock.

Water extraction may not be something that home and business owners spend a lot of time thinking about.  Only in emergency situations does this service become necessary.  Sometimes after a heavy rainfall or due to a pipe that burst or a backup of your neighborhood’s main sewer, the removal of water becomes critical.  After large scale disasters, SERVPRO Oak Lawn acts quickly to mitigate the damage caused by water accumulation.  We not only remove the water quickly, but we also work to salvage any furniture or equipment that we can.  The goal of our water extraction services is to help people in Chicago Ridge recover quickly so that they can get on with their lives and businesses. 

No one can predict when a natural disaster is going to strike.  That’s why people call us.  Our team of highly trained technicians to respond to any emergency around the clock.  We are available every day of the year to help businesses and families in our area to recover from water damage and get their life back too normal.  

Leaky Roofs and Mold

8/3/2017 (Permalink)

A small leak in your roof can go unnoticed for some time. This can allow moisture to seep into your home resulting in the development of mold.  Now, not only will you need your roof repaired, you will need to address any damage the leak has caused to the inside of your home. The first step is to determine the cause of the leak and have it repaired.  

Causes of Roof Leaks

The actual cause of a roof leak may vary, but the most common include:

  • Broken or missing shingles
  • Damaged flashing
  • Ice dams

Sometimes, during a strong wind storm, shingles may become damaged or blown off. If you check your roof regularly after a storm, this will be obvious.  However, it is not always easy to see if a shingle was damaged unless you climb up on your roof and inspect it thoroughly.  Realistically though, it is not always possible to do this so you may not be able to detect any damage until you see water on the interior of your home. 

Damaged flashing can allow water and moisture into the home which can cause mold to develop. This is also the case with the metal installed around your chimney, dormer windows, skylights and any vent pipes you may have. 

Ice dams are very common in the winter. These are ridges of ice that form at the edge of a roof and prevent melting snow from draining off the roof.  The water then will back up behind the dam and can leak into your home and cause damage to ceilings, walls, insulation and other areas. 

Signs to Look For

  • Water marks on ceilings and/or walls
  • Discolored areas on ceilings and/or walls
  • Peeling paint around skylights or dormer windows
  • Peeling, cracked, bubbled plaster
  • Mold around the chimney
  • Wood that is rotting in the attic, around skylights or dormer windows
  • Musty or mildew smell in attic

The Mold Remediation Process

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

  1. Emergency Contact - (708) 239-1444
  2. Inspection and Mold Damage Assessment
  3. Mold Containment
  4. Air Filtration
  5. Removing Mold and Mold-Infested Materials
  6. Cleaning Contents and Belongings

After The Storm is Over Mold in Chicago Ridge

7/13/2017 (Permalink)

Mold is a harmful issue and it can negatively affect your home.

Information on Mold Remediation in Orland Park

Mold growth begins anywhere from 2-3 days after a storm causes water damage in Orland Park. Mold is a harmful issue, and it can negatively affect your health, house, and the contents within your home.  As the length of exposure to storm water damage increases, the chance for air spores that spread mold also escalates. Mold remediation becomes more challenging as the signs of mold growth that include musty odors, and discolored surfaces, become more apparent.

Act Fast

Our highly trained mold removal technicians use the latest technology and tools to quickly address your mold problem in a manner that effectively removes mold colonies. Unlike DIY techniques, our SERVPRO professional service does not carry the risk of improperly removing mold, in this way, expediting a more rapid return to a healthy home environment.  We are also trained and licensed to handle lead, asbestos and other dangerous materials that may show up during the mold removal process.

We are available 24 per day. Before your appointment, be sure to:

  • Inventory damaged and missing goods for your insurance claim.
  • Throw away all sealed and unsealed food and beverage contacted by storm flood waters. 
  • Open windows and doors.
  • Refrain from using electrical devices until it is safe.
  • Remove standing water when possible.
  • Use dehumidifiers and fans to ventilate your home; SERVPRO can perform this task upon arrival.

Our mold remediation technician will also determine if any contents in your home are salvageable.  Porous items that are wet for over 48 hours and cannot be completely dried and cleaned must be disposed of.

This list includes carpet, carpet padding, ceiling tiles, clothing, drywall, floor tiles, insulation, leather goods, paper, upholstery, wallpaper and wood items.

When our mold remediation expert arrives, he will:

  • Apply biocides.
  • Decide whether or not you can stay in your house during the mold remediation process.
  • Determine if additional ventilation and containment is needed.
  • Look for mold in the HVAC system and biological hazards in the home.
  • Test for any additional mold after the mold remediation process.
  • Use quick structural drying techniques.

Here are some more helpful links on mold:

EPA Mold Guide

IICRC 5 Principles to Mold Remediation

How to Protect your Property Before, During and After a Flood

7/13/2017 (Permalink)

Acting fast when you have flood damage can help preserve your home.
Protecting Your Oak Lawn Property Before, During, and After a Flood

While fire may be a more common concern among homeowners, your home could in fact be as much as ten times more likely to be damaged by water than by fire. (Floodsmart.gov) Significant sources of water damage to one’s property can come from weather-related moisture or flooding, including flooding from heavy rains, flash floods, dam failures, storm surges and mudflows. In addition, new construction of buildings, roads or bridges can alter the flow of water, increasing the potential for flooding.

Living in a high-risk flood zone can increase the likelihood of experiencing a flood, but being outside a high-risk zone does not mean homeowners are safe; flooding is always a possibility due to causes such as heavy rains, snowmelt and spring thaws.

How to Protect Your Home Before During and After a Flood

There are a number of things you can do to help minimize or prevent water damage to your property. Follow these tips to help prepare and recover from potentially costly flood damage.

Before the Flood:

  • Have your furnace, water heater and other permanent equipment elevated above the expected flood levels of your area.
  • Inspect sump pumps and drains regularly to ensure proper operation.
  • If you own a generator, have a licensed electrician provide a transfer switch to your sump pump so you can operate it in the event of flooding.
  • To help prevent sewage backup, have a licensed plumber install an interior or exterior backflow prevention valve.
  • Keep sandbags on hand to help divert unusually high water away from your foundation.
  • Learn the flood alert signals of your community.
  • Collect emergency building materials if you live in a frequently flooded area. These may include plywood, plastic sheeting, lumber, nails, shovels and sandbags.
  • Plan and practice an evacuation route. Designate a place for family members to meet in the event they become separated.
  • Review with all family members how to shut off utilities in an emergency.
  • Plan a survival kit with important documents, including insurance documents, medications and critical items in the event you need to leave your home.

During the Flood:

  • Listen to a battery-operated radio or television for the latest storm information. If advised to evacuate, shut off all utilities and evacuate immediately.
  • Move to high ground, avoid rising waters and do not walk or drive through any floodwaters.
  • Stay away from downed power lines and electrical wires.

After the Flood:

  • Listen to the radio and do not return home until authorities indicate it is safe to do so.
  • Once allowed back into your home, inspect it for damage. If your property has been damaged, promptly report the loss.
  • Be watchful of snakes that may have found their way into your home.
  • Throw away all food that has come in contact with floodwaters.
  • Remove standing water as quickly as possible, including from your basement. If your basement is flooded, pump out about 1/3 of the water per day to avoid structural damage.
  • Properly dry or remove soaked carpets, padding and upholstery within 24-48 hours after a flood to prevent mold growth. Discard anything that cannot be properly dried.
  • Wash and disinfect all areas that have been flooded. This includes walls, floors, closets and shelves, as well as heating and air-conditioning systems. Do not energize electrical or electronic equipment that may have suffered water damage without first having a qualified electrician inspect and/or test it.

If you need help with a water loss it is usually best to call trained professionals so you do not experience issues with mold after the loss.  Call us 24/7 708-239-1444. We are here to help. 

Beginning The Recovery Process After A Fire

7/13/2017 (Permalink)

Fire damage can be very overwhelming whether it is your home or business that is affected.

6/28/2016

When a fire quickly rips through your business or home, there are many factors to consider. The numerous steps are overwhelming on a practical, mental, and emotional level. Once you’ve made sure that everyone is safe, that 911 has been called, and that the fire has been put out, it’s time to let SERVPRO of Oak Lawn take some of the burden off your shoulders. By calling us as soon as possible is what can help save your belongings from the devastating effects of smoke and mold in Oak Lawn, IL. 

Some of your belongings can certainly be saved from the after–effects of a fire and it’s important to responsibly start the process right away. Once you’ve been given the “go ahead” from your local fire department, you should begin an inventory in your property. Soot and smoke from the fire can immediately begin to rust, discolor, and stain your walls, floors, textiles, porous surfaces, and metal objects. The oils and acid in the soot will begin to erode materials quickly and the oils will make it stick to surfaces. 

There’s one aspect of damage after a fire that isn’t necessarily due to the fire itself. Mold and water damage are also huge factors in the restoration process. When the fire department is working hard to put out the flames, water from the hoses can get into everything, leading to water damage and mold. It’s important to note that attempting to restore your belongings on your own can lead to permanent damage. You do not need to spend your time and energy trying to clean everything on your own.

Large, unexpected disasters don’t always destroy all of your belongings. Give the responsibility of restoration and repair to professionals who will do it right. Call SERVPRO of Oak Lawn today (708) 239-1444 to assist you with getting your home put back together. 

Residential and Commercial Water Damage Restoration After Floods

7/13/2017 (Permalink)

Chicago has been nicknamed the "windy city" but in our business it seems it should be called the "city of flooded basements." Over recent years, we have seen an increase in the number of floods that have hit the city and suburbs and it is worth taking notice.

When the number of floods rise, so do water emergencies.  Whether it is a burst pipe, sump pump failure or other water issues, they must be cleaned up quickly in order to minimize damage. Even water amounts that seem minimal, if they sit too long, can cause structural damage. This can also lead to a higher cost to repair in the long run. 

If you have experienced flooding in your home or business and need assistance call us today (708)239-1444.

Mold in Oak Lawn

6/19/2017 (Permalink)

If you see mold, do not disturb it!

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 Oak Lawn 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 Oak Lawn 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 –(708) 239-1444

Avoiding Water Damage From Sump Pump Failure

6/19/2017 (Permalink)

If your sump pump fails, your basement could begin to fill with water.

If you have a basement, your sump pump is often your last line of defense against flooding.  It works by safely diverting water away from your house and is especially important during times of heavy rain when it puts your home at risk of water damage.  If your sump pump fails, you could find your basement under water.  When this happens, it is important to act fast! Water damage can be a progressive issue and if not dealt with in a timely manner, this could lead to structural damage, mold and much more.

Is My Sump Pump Working? Tips to Avoid Water Damage

  1. It is important to make sure your sump pump is in working order.  Otherwise you risk the chance that It could fail when you need it most.
  2. After heavy rains, check the sump pump inlet screen for any blockages, one of the leading causes of sump pump failure.
  3.  Occasionally, test your sump pump to ensure it is working properly. You can do this by filling the pit with water and watch to see if it is pumped away.  If not, you may have a problem.
  4.  Check the float control to make sure it is free and not restricted or hung up.
  5.  Replace the battery backup every 2-3 years.  The last thing you need is to find out your batter backup is dead in the middle of a power outage during a big storm. 

Locally Owned Company with National Storm Resources

We live and work in this community too; we might even be neighbors. As a locally owned and operated business, SERVPRO of Oak Lawn is close by and ready to respond to your flood or storm damage emergency. We are proud to be an active member of the Oak Lawn community and want to do our part to make our community the best it can be.

Grilling Safety to Prevent Fires

6/19/2017 (Permalink)

Never leave your grill unattended

Summer is officially here! There is no better time to get together for an old-fashioned barbecue at home or at the campground.  Imagine a perfectly grilled T-bone steak, a smoked turkey, or just simple hot dogs on the grill. However, keep in mind the safety measures to have a safe and enjoyable barbecue free from fire and smoke that could potentially damage your home, camper or campground.  

  • Ensure your grill is stable and away from buildings or structures.  Grills are designed for outdoor use only.
  • Check the grill's propane tank for leaks and keep it cleaned.
  • Never leave your grill unattended or try to move it while it is lit.
  • Wear appropriate clothing and avoid long sleeves.
  • Have baking soda and fire extinguisher readily available in the event of a grease fire. 

Following these simple tips can help prevent fires in and around your grill, home and property. Grilling accidents do happen, so make every effort to be safe and enjoy the barbecue with friends and family.

If you do experience the unfortunate circumstance of fire or smoke damage in Oak Lawn, IL, SERVPRO is ready 24/7 to help.

CALL US TODAY (708) 239-1444

24/7 Quick Emergency Response for Water Damage Restoration In Oak Lawn

6/19/2017 (Permalink)

Quick service is essential if you have experienced water damage in your home or business.

If your home has sustained major water damage, you may feel like your home will never recover. Water damage due to natural occurrence such as flooding or plumbing pipe breakage can seem like the end of the world, especially if you are standing in a foot of water inside your home. However there is a solution.  Water damage can be taken care by our trained experts in water damage restoration. 

Quick Service is Essential.

Once your home has suffered water damage, you need access to restoration services quickly.  The water will need to be completely removed quickly in order to prevent mold and mildew growth in the home.  We want to make sure you don't experience any more damage than what the water has already caused.

Thorough Restoration Process

Every step must be followed carefully to ensure water is not left behind.  The water will need to removed completely and dehumidifying processes provided to completely dry the space. Unfortunately, some of your items may be damage beyond repair and will need to be removed from the space.  Other items that are salvageable, will be moved to a new location for restoration.

Let our trained experts help you restore  your water damaged home. 

Call us today (708) 239-1444

Commercial Restoration Services In Oak Lawn, IL

6/19/2017 (Permalink)

A disaster event in your business can be a trying time.

When your Oak Lawn business suffers from a disaster event like a fire or flood, you will have to think about many different details at the same time.  Your clients may need to be notified, shipping may have to be delayed or canceled, customer support will have to be increased, employees may be displaced but still need to work, and so on. 

A disaster event will undoubtedly be a trying time, and it is important to figure out what should take priority and what can be delegated to others so you can focus on getting your business back to full speed as soon as possible.  

Depending on what type of business you own, the equipment, technology, and the items that can be salvaged or stored from inside your building might be some of the most important assets to your business.  You will need someone who can help you track and manage those items for you, so you can focus on the other tasks at hand.  

SERVPRO of Oak Lawn provides content storage services along with our disaster restoration efforts.

In your time of need, consider the benefits of working with us to keep your items safe:

  • Saved time – Instead of attempting to move your important items yourself, you can simply work with us. We’ll already be on site to provide any type of disaster restoration service you need, and we’ll begin the content storage process at the same time.
  • All-in-one service – You won’t have to spread yourself thin calling all over the place finding different companies to provide different services. We provide disaster restoration, content storage, and full project management services.  You’ll only have to make one call to have all of your needs handled.
  • Meticulous environment – We will log each and every one of your items into inventory so you know exactly what’s being stored. We also use a climate controlled storage facility that will provide a stable environment for your precious technology and equipment. Instead of having to wonder what’s been taken care of and what’s being restored or salvaged, you’ll have a detailed picture of everything you need to know.

As a business owner, you have probably had to learn how to delegate important tasks to other people.  That is what great leaders do, focus on the essentials and rely on other reliable professionals to fill in the gaps. 

Let SERVPRO of Oak Lawn handle your tricky situation of disaster restoration.

CALL US TODAY (708) 239-1444

Chicago Ridge Smoke and Soot Cleanup

6/19/2017 (Permalink)

Each smoke and fire damage situation can be different and requires a unique solution.

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 Oak Lawn 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 – (708) 239-1444

Mold Removal

5/19/2017 (Permalink)

Mold spores thrive on moisture

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 – (708) 239-1444

Spring Storms Bring Flood Damage

5/19/2017 (Permalink)

Spring storms can hit and leave a large amount of rain

SERVPRO of Oak Lawn has experience restoring homes affected by storms and flooding.  We can respond immediately with highly trained technicians who employ specialized equipment and techniques to restore your home or business back to 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 SERVPRO of Oak Lawn can scale our resources to handle a large storm or flooding disaster. We can access equipment and personnel from a network of 1,650 Franchises across the country and elite Disaster Recovery Teams that are strategically located throughout the United States.

Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today (708)239-1444

Restoring your Oak Lawn Commercial Property After a Water Damage Event

5/9/2017 (Permalink)

Commercial Water Damage Events Can Present Unique Challenges

Flooding and water damage events at Oak Lawn 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 Oak Lawn

SERVPRO of Oak Lawn 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.

Meet Our Crew

Certifications

  • OSHA - Other Training
  • FCT - Floor Care (Hard Surfaces) Technician
  • WRT - Water Damage Restoration Technician
  • CCT - Carpet Cleaning Technician
  • OSHA - 10-hour General and/or Construction Industry Training Program
  • HST - Health and safety Technician
  • UFT - Upholstery & Fabric Cleaning Technician
  • ASD - Applied Structural Drying Technician
  • RCT - Rug Cleaning Technician
  • OCT - Odor Control Technician
  • RRRP - Lead-Based Paint Activities and Renovation
  • AMRT - Applied Microbial Remediation Technician
  • SRT - Fire & Smoke Damage Restoration Technician
  • RRT - Carpet Repair & Reinstallation Technician

Tornado Warning Signs in Oak Lawn, IL

4/18/2017 (Permalink)

Knowledge is key during a storm

Tornadoes are one of the most feared because their strong winds can cause devastating damage to entire towns.  Tornado winds can exceed speeds of 100 miles per hour and this can easily damage homes and businesses as well as uproot trees and toss cars around like they are a toy.  Since it is possible for a tornado to form anywhere in the U.S., it is important to look for the warning signs of the impending storm so you can get to a safe location. 

The Difference Between A Tornado Watch And Tornado Warning

Your local news will usually put out a tornado watch or warning.  If your area is under watch, this means that your area is experiencing conditions that make it possible for a tornado to form.  You should be on alert if a tornado watch has been having been issued in the event the situation becomes more dangerous. When a tornado warning has been issued, this means there has been a tornado sighted and you need to take shelter immediately.  

Tornado Warning Signs

There are several things you can look for when you know there is a threat of a tornado.  Early warning signs are increasing winds, clouds moving rapidly, and the sky and clouds look green.  Hail is another early warning sign of a tornado and what causes the sky to look the greenish color.

Tornado Preparedness

Knowledge is key to tornado preparedness.  Make sure everyone in your family knows the signs of an approaching tornado and they know what to do.  

During a storm listen to your local news or a weather radio station for updates.  You can also install a weather app on your smart phone that will send you updates.  

Also, you should consider confining pets to a carrier or placing dogs on a leash during a tornado watch so that you can transfer them to a safe room in case the warning is issued.  

Even the most extensive preparation cannot prevent a tornado from causing significant damage to your home.  If this happens it is important to call a storm damage restoration professional immediately to assist you in recovering.  

Fire Damage in Alsip, IL

4/18/2017 (Permalink)

Our crews are trained to handle residential and commercial fire damage restoration

What to do after a fire in your home or business

When a fire happens in your home or business, lives are suddenly turned around.  Recovery can be a mentally and physically draining process.  So who do you contact and where do you begin?

  1. Contact your insurance company for detailed instructions on temporary housing, protecting the property, and conducting inventory.  They will recommend a fire damage restorationcompany such as SERVPRO of Oak Lawnwho are experienced with the process.
  2. Before you enter your residence, make sure it is safe. Check with the fire department to make sure there was no structural damage caused by the fire.  They should also see that the utilities are disconnected before they leave or are safe to use.
  3.  Conduct an inventory of damaged property and items. Take photographs of everything you can. Do not throw anything away until this has been done.
  4. If possible, locate your valuable documents and records. 
  5. Be sure to let your local police department know if you are not going to be staying in your home while the repairs are made.
  6. Save any receipts for money you spend related to the fire loss.  Your insurance company may need them later for verification.
  7. Notify your mortgage company of the fire.

For more tips and information on fires, you can check out the U.S. Fire Administration website. 

Chicago Ridge Commercial Fire Damage Restoration

4/7/2017 (Permalink)

One of the most common issues that many business owners face is fire damage

What to know about Chicago Ridge Commercial Fire Damage Restoration

For many small business owners, their small business is their livelihood. Any disaster that happens to hurt the company can be detrimental the owner’s finances in a huge way. One of the most common issues that many business owners face is commercial fire damage . There are many ways in which fire can affect your business. However, there are steps that a company can take both before and after fire damage occurs to mitigate any damage that a fire may cause.

Fire Prevention

Although it seems obvious, being able to prevent fire damage from occurring is the best defense against fire.  There are many things that a business can do to increase their first line against fire issues.  First, always use the highest quality building materials possible. Many new building materials are much more fire resistant and can end up saving a lot of money.  They may be more expensive to put in, but if a fire occurs, they can help save thousands of dollars in repairs.  Also, if your facility has a lot of employees, be sure to have safety meetings and discuss the ways they can reduce the likelihood of a fire taking place.  For example, a cigarette should be disposed of properly rather than just throwing it on the ground or in a trash can.  These steps can go a long way in reducing the chances of a fire.  However, at the end of the day even if a business takes the necessary precautions, a fire may still occur.  It is important to have a good plan in place and a company that you trust to help clean up the fire damages.

Fire Damage

Some business owners may thing that fire damage is something that will easily be cleaned up.  However, there are often several layers of issues that the small business owner faces in the aftermath.  Flames in a fire can cause damage to the exterior and the interior of the building.  Sometimes there may even be structural damage as well.  The damage caused by fire and smoke are a significant issue.  Many people may feel as though the smoke just smells bad but it can cause long term damage as well.  It is important that you work with a quality experienced restoration company to restore the building that was damaged.

Alsip Commercial Storm/Flood Damage Restoration

1/24/2017 (Permalink)

SERVPRO can help mitigate water damage that has occurred in your business

Some commercial business owners treat property issues as part of doing business, but dealing with Oak Lawn flood damage can be sometimes problematic.  Flood damage can destroy inventory, stock, supplies, office furniture, documents and electronic equipment as well as cause structural damage.  Also, there could be potential health issues arising from contaminated water and possible mold contamination.  SERVPRO suggests the following to help mitigate water damage to your business facility. 

In many cases, flood damage results from the effects of a storm.  There are several types of water damage that can result from storm surges. Some of them include:

  • Building displacement or damage
    • Mold growth in commercial properties within walls or HVAC systems
    • Damage to coastal rail lines, highways, or roads resulting in less accessibility for transportation
    • Loss of business, closed doors means lost commercial cash flow, less rent, and loss of customer traffic 

How to Save on Flood Damage Restoration


Have a flood insurance program. By purchasing business interruption insurance, you can gain reimbursement for a claim and lessen the impact of no revenue stream and thus lower your total costs. SERVPRO is recognized as a preferred vendor by many insurance and management companies. We can help speed the process of water damage restoration. The best way to reduce or prevent damages generated by storm surges is to implement strategies before the onset of hurricane season. Here are some strategies you should implement:

  • Build higher. If you own your commercial building, consider the value of finding the property's base flood elevation and building above it. Hire a structural engineer to offer a plan to reinforce your commercial property.
    • Place valuables higher. If your building contains more than one floor, be sure to move valuable assets, technical equipment, and computers to the second floor.
    • Invest in preventative installations. Be sure to install some back-flow valves in the property's sewer lines. These valves will prevent city sewage from flowing into your property in the event of a storm surge. Have available access to water surge barricading materials such as sandbags. Also, be sure to elevate electrical systems such as extension cords above the region's flood level. You can also utilize cinder blocks to raise your appliances and most valuable assets above anticipated flood levels.
    • Select fast-drying material. Carpeting and wet drywall are susceptible to damage from mold. These porous-surfaced building materials normally require discarding after flooding due to contaminants and mold growth. Build or replace with stone products, tile and noncardboard backed gypsum materials. 

To ensure your Oak Lawn commercial property can withstand water damage resulting from floods be sure to implement the strategies outlined above.  Post flooding, the most urgent action is to extract the standing water from the premises. Our company has the equipment, training, and expertise to dry out your building, repair material damage, clean, and sanitize your business. Our IICRC-certified professionals are skilled in thoroughly restoring your property to its previous safe, sanitary condition. "Like it never even happened." Let's get you open for business.

As You Deck the Halls This Season, Be Smart!

12/1/2016 (Permalink)

As you enjoy your holidays, be smart!

Happy Holidays!

As you put up your decorations for the winter holidays, be smart!  Holiday decorations can increase your risk for a fire in your home. 

If you are putting up a Christmas tree, make sure it is at least 3 feet away from any source of heat.  This may include fireplaces, radiators, space heaters, candles or heat vents. Also, be sure that your tree is not blocking any exits.  When adding lights to your tree, be sure to inspect them for frayed wires.  A real Christmas tree should be watered every day.  A dry tree can be dangerous and easily catch on fire.  

Christmas, New Year's Day and Christmas Eve are popular days to burn candles.  If you do burn them, be sure that they are at least 12 inches away from anything that is flammable. Such as the Christmas tree or any decorations that may be hanging on your walls or placed around the house.  Consider using battery-operated flame less candles.  These are a great alternative!

For more tips you can visit:

U.S. Fire Administration

National Fire Protection Association

Keeping Your Pets Safe When Fire Strikes in Oak Lawn, IL

9/22/2016 (Permalink)

Have a Plan to Keep Your Pets Safe In Case of A Fire

It is easy to worry about the damage that a fire can do to your home or possessions.  Anyone in your family could be exposed to soot during or after a fire, including your pets.  Once everyone is out of the house safely, and the fire is out, you can focus on getting your pets cleaned up. 

If your pet has been exposed to soot, they could ingest it if they try to clean themselves, so it is advised to bathe them as soon as possible. If you suspect your pet is sick from inhaling smoke you should try to get them to a veterinarian for medical assistance. 

Soot removal inside the home should take place as soon as possible after a fire.  Leaving it untreated, can give soot the chance to stain your valuables, and spread through the entire home. 

Have Smoke or Fire Damage? Call (708) 239-1444

Mold Removal in Chicago Ridge IL

9/22/2016 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Oak Lawn has experience with mold removal

Mold can be a scary word for home owners.  No one wants to find out that their home is subject to mold and mildew but it unfortunately does happen.  It is common for mold or mildew to be present in the home due to factors such as water damage from pipes that are leaking or have leaked in the past. Another factor could be from heavy rains in your area.

Whichever your case, it is good to know that SERVPRO of Oak Lawn can assist you with mold removal services. 

Understanding Mold

Some restoration companies advertise “mold removal” and may even guarantee to remove all mold. This is a fallacy because removing all mold from a house or business is impossible; microscopic mold spores exist almost everywhere, both indoors and outdoors. Here are the 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.

Equipment

Our initial focus is to stop the source of water feeding the mold. We then isolate the affected area using a negative air pressure chamber. We invest in ongoing mold remediation training and the latest equipment to serve you better

Learn More

The Mold Remediation Process


Every mold damage scenario is different, and requires a unique solution, but the general mold remediation process stays the same. The steps listed below illustrate our “typical” process:

  1. Emergency Contact - (708) 239-1444
  2. Inspection and Mold Damage Assessment
  3. Mold Containment
  4. Air Filtration
  5. Removing Mold and Mold-Infested Materials
  6. Cleaning Contents and Belongings
  7. Restoration

Common Mold Misconceptions


With sensational news stories and misleading advertising, you can easily understand why so many people are misinformed about indoor mold. Learn the facts about mold and the mold remediation process.

What is “Black Mold”?
“Mold Removal” versus Mold Remediation

Water Damage In Alsip Can Be Devastating

9/20/2016 (Permalink)

Coming home after a long day of work to water damage in your home can be devastating. SERVPRO of Oak Lawn can help.

Chances are you take great pride in your property, whether you own a business, apartment complex, small business, or home.  Suppose you arrive home one evening after work and come across a burst pipe, sewer backup, or leaky water heater in your home. Whichever the case may be, a continuous trickle or a large amount of water damage can lead to a disaster and requires immediate cleanup.  SERVPRO of Oak Lawn specializes in extraction and water damage restoration

In these situations, always try to remember safety first.  When water damage happens it can be very stressful and sometimes even dangerous.  

If not acted upon quickly, any amount of water accumulation can lead to larger problems such as mold and mildew, further damage to walls, ceilings and floors, or even the outer structure of your home or property.  

SERVPRO of Oak Lawn strives to provide the best possible service all of the time.  No matter how big or small your water damage may be, we have the proper training, equipment, and products to restore your home or business to pre-loss state.  

Call us today (708) 239-1444

Got Mold? Call SERVPRO of Oak Lawn Today!

8/12/2016 (Permalink)

This is mold you can see, but there may also be mold behind these walls.

If you suspect you have mold, you should first consult an environmental specialist to determine what types of mold you are dealing with and where it is coming from.  Once that is done, SERVPRO can take the proper steps to properly remediate the mold.

Water damaged ceilings and walls provide an ideal home for mold colonies to flourish.  Most damage can be easily seen when it occurs after a flood or as a result of the water used to put out a fire, but some water damage can lie concealed behind walls.  Mold that forms in these areas may also remain undetected by most people, but not to trained professionals.  

Call SERVPRO of Oak Lawn today (708) 239-1444 if you suspect you have mold. We provide complete mold remediation in Oak Lawn and the surrounding suburbs.

The Destructive Power of Water In Worth, IL

7/19/2016 (Permalink)

Timely and effective intervention of water damage can help reduce the damages

Water is the single most long-term destructive substance in the indoor environment. If there is excess moisture or the structure has ever experienced any flooding, this can cause the property to rapidly deteriorate. If there is unsanitary water or clean-up services are delayed this can lead to more serious problems.

If the water is dealt with during the first 24-48 hours, the harmful effects can be drastically reduced.  Even though the damage may look severe, cleanup and restoration can produce amazing results. 

Some of the places that water damage can occur are:

  • Partition walls
  • Flooring
  • Internal walls
  • Masonry
  • Balcony
  • Suspended ceiling
  • Foundation/ground slab
  • Foundation walls

As leaders in the water damage industry, we have advanced training and expertise, not to mention a tremendous amount of hands-on experience. We use this training and experience to quickly dry your home and restore it back to pre-water-damage condition. Our process includes documentation of the drying process to validate your property is dry. Learn about our water damage training and certificates.

Locally Owned Company with National Resources

SERVPRO of Oak Lawn is locally owned and operated—so we are part of this community too. We are also part of a national network of over 1,650 SERVPRO Franchises and special Disaster Recovery Teams strategically located throughout the country to respond to large scale disasters.

We are proud to serve our local communities.

Where It All Began - The SERVPRO Story

6/24/2016 (Permalink)

The SERVPRO Story

Ted and Doris Isaacson launched SERVPRO in 1967 as a painting business in Sacramento, Calif. With a background in cleaning and restoration, however, Ted and Doris soon transformed the company into a franchisor of cleanup and restoration specialists.

After selling its first Franchise in 1969, SERVPRO continued to grow, acquiring the Bristol-Myers Domesticare Division and its 175 Franchises in 1979.

SERVPRO relocated the corporate headquarters from Sacramento to Gallatin, TN, in 1988 in a strategic move to place itself within 600 miles of 50% of the U.S. population.

At the time of the relocation, the SERVPRO System consisted of 647 Franchises.

SERVPRO Corporate quickly became a key contributor in its community, and in 1991 the Nashville Business Journal named SERVPRO the Small Business of the Year. In the meantime the company continued its impressive growth, selling the 1,000th Franchise in 2000. Learn more about our Awards and Recognition.

In 2005, SERVPRO moved to a 140,000 square-foot, state-of-the-art facility in Gallatin to provide more room for expansion.

More than 1,650 Franchises are operating nationwide, and SERVPRO continues to grow. The need for experienced, trained and professional cleanup and restoration experts is recession resistant, and the growth potential inside of a proven system presents an opportunity for prospective Franchisees.

With a proud history, a successful present and a bright future, SERVPRO will press on toward becoming the premier cleaning and restoration company in the world.

Free Continuing Education for Insurance Professionals in Oak Lawn

4/26/2016 (Permalink)

We offer FREE Continuing Education Classes for Insurance Professionals

At SERVPRO Oak Lawn & SERVPRO Orland Park we understand disasters. Whether it is flooding, fires, or mold, we dedicate ourselves to invest in education, training, and technology so we can continue to be leaders in disaster restoration.  We also want to work directly with you to develop strategies on how to limit losses for your customers. 

SERVPRO offers a variety of classes that discuss how to limit loses and control the spread of any further damage.  By knowing this information, you can help to save your customer money and are better able to assist your customers with their claims.   

Some of the classes SERVPRO offers for no cost to you are:

  • Fire Damage Restoration
  • Understanding Mold in the Restoration Industry
  • Restorative Drying for Water Damage
  • Mitigation Awareness Response Seminar
  • Biohazard Cleanup
  • Ethics

Our classes are very informative and well-researched.  We want you to be able to learn and have fun!  We see our continuing education courses as just a small way to say thank you for what you do. 

To find out more about our upcoming free continuing education classes you can call us today 1-708-239-1444.

Advice for Cleaning and Treating Wood Floors

4/6/2016 (Permalink)

Make sure you are using the correct product for your wood flooring. Using products meant for tile or laminate can actually hurt wood floors

Everyone wants the look of hardwood floors in their home.  They are more durable and last longer than most other types of flooring.  Very few people know how to properly take care of their wood floors so they are always at their best and brightest.

Here is a great link from Homes.com that gives advice on taking care of them properly.

Spring Cleaning Advice: How to Clean and Treat Wood Floors Right

If you have had any water damage to your hardwood floors you can always call us anytime 708-239-1444 and we can come out and take a look at them for you.

Spring Home Project List

3/8/2016 (Permalink)

Tackle some small projects now so you can have some fun this summer!

Spring is right around the corner! We have survived winter once again! 

It is important to make sure your home is in good, safe working condition now so that you dont end up with bigger problems later.  Here are a few things you should tackle as the weather starts to get nicer and when summer finally comes, you can leave some time for fun! 

  1. Get Your Roof Inspected  ~ Winter can be brutal on roofs, so now is the time to bring someone in to do a close inspection, so you can address any issues before they become problems.  A roof inspeciton includes a thorough look at the entire roof and opinions about the conditions of the flashing, shingles or tile, valleys, trim, etc.  The problems the inspector will look for include moisture or wind damage, leakage, staining and streaking from mold or mildew and loose flashing or seals.  The inspector will also give you a list of any maintenance needed as well as an estimate for the work.  
  2. Check for Air Leaks and Seal Windows  ~ Drafty windows mean the AC will slip out and the hot summer air will slip in.  You want to get this problem solved before it gets too warm outside.  Make sure any caulking and weather stripping is intact.  You will want to pay attention to any windows that are exposed to snow, rain, or extreme sunlight.  This is also a good time to clean your windows inside and out. 
  3. Get an Air Conditioning Tune-Up ~ Spring is the time to change the filter, check for proper refrigerant levels, clean evaporator and condenser coils, calibrate the condenser and oil motors if needed.  Air conditioning maintenance can help prevent small problems from becoming big problems and you will want to do it now as with the dog days of summer comes longer waits and higher prices. 

None of this stuff will matter if you and your family are not safe.  After checking the other things, you should also check your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, as well as make sure the gauges on your fire extinguishers read 100 percent.  If you dont have a fire extinguisher, you can buy one at your local hardware store.  After you do so, make sure everyone in your family knows how to use it! 

Happy Spring!!

We Have Expanded!!!

11/12/2015 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Orland Park is under new ownership!

The SERVPRO of Oak Lawn Team is excited to announce the purchase of our second Franchise SERVPRO of Orland Park.  We look forward to meeting and working with the homeowners and businesses in Orland Park and surrounding communities.  You can expect the same quality and great service that SERVPRO of Oak Lawn has been providing since 2009.

Ronald McDonald House Charities in Oak Lawn, IL

5/20/2015 (Permalink)

A great job done by our marketing and production team for donating their time to clean chairs for Ronald McDonald House Charities in Oak Lawn. This is a great charity that does wonderful things!

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