Chimney Fires Are Preventable
Every year in the United States there are more than 25,000 chimney fires. On average these yearly fires cause cost more than $125 million in property damage.
These tragedies can be preventable. Regular inspection, cleaning, and repair of your chimney can help prevent malfunction or dangerous build-up that could put your family at risk.
Follow these prevention tips to help avoid chimney fires, that could save your family!
- Minimize creosote build-up in the chimney
- Get an annual chimney inspection
- Clean your chimney or have it professionally cleaned when you discover a 1/8-inch layer of build-up on the walls
- Install an appropriate fitting chimney cap
- Use only safe approved fire starters
- Practice clean burning techniques Only
If you experience a chimney fire that causes smoke or soot damage up your house, call the professionals at SERVPRO of Walker & Winston Counties to clean your home properly.
Keep Your Furry Friends Safe During a Storm
Storms can be very stressful event for your furry friends. Follow these tips to help alleviate some of the off of your pet.
- Anxiety Levels: Many pets have anxiety with fireworks or storms. If your pet has been prescribed medication for anxiety, talk to your vet about the best course of action leading up to firework events or storm systems coming through your area.
- Finding Shelter: Often times during a storm, it may be the best course of action to take shelter in a small bathroom or basement. Make sure your pet is familiar with this area just in case you need to take shelter there. Practice going to this designated place beforehand.
- Evacuation Plan: Make sure you have an evacuation plan that everyone in your household is aware of. Create an area that you can easily locate your pets leash, carrier, medication and food if you need to evacuate. Be sure to know where your pets most desired hiding place is just in case you cannot find them when you need to evacuate.
- First Aid Kit: Talk to your vet about adding items to your first aid kit that are dedicated for your pet. Keep your first aid kit stocked so it is always plentiful of supplies.
What To Keep and Discard After Mold Damage
Mold can inflict devastating amounts of damage to your home or business. While all hope might seem lost, there are certain mold cleaning techniques you can use to save your possessions.
Items to Throw Away
It's important to know which items simply cannot be saved when attempting to expedite your mold cleaning efforts:
Porous Objects: Because of their tendency to absorb water quickly, it's unlikely that you'll be able to save objects with porous surfaces. This includes items made of cardboard, padding, stuffed animals, upholstered furniture, carpeting and mattresses.
Paper Products: While it is possible to restore these items, the process is rather costly and should be saved for sentimental items. Place any possessions you wish to preserve in the freezer to prevent mold damage from spreading.
Food Items: Moldy or water damaged food must be thrown away. The same goes for any water damaged food preparation appliances.
Items to Keep
Glass, Metal or Plastic Materials: Clean these items using either antibacterial hand soap or a homemade mixture comprised of 1 gallon of water and 1/2 cup of bleach.
Most Clothing Items: Time is of the essence with clothing, so make sure to wash them using regular laundry detergent as soon as possible. Leather clothing needs to be taken to a cleaning professional.
Electronic Devices: Appliances exposed to mold can vary.. Any water damaged electronics or appliances are potentially dangerous and need to be thrown away. You should consult a professional if you wish to restore these types of items.
Knowing which items to keep and which you need to get rid of can certainly help expedite your mold cleaning efforts. If you have any further questions, or require additional help getting rid of mold, contact mold remediation experts as soon as possible.
Tips for a Longer Lasting Roof
Tips on maintaining your roof:
- Make sure that any trellises, gutters and other additions to your roof are not rotting and are suitably attached.
- Get an annual inspection from a licensed, experienced roofer. If you get overwhelmed by google, call our office today for a few local companies that we like to work with.
- Confirm with said roofer that all seams, especially those around chimneys and where a flat roof meets the pitched roof or a wall, are sealed properly to help prevent water intrusion.
- Ensure that any roof cleaning is performed by a professional with extensive experience and proper equipment and products.
- Get a stamp of approval that there is sufficient airflow in and out of the attic, proper ventilation is key to prevent moisture getting trapped in your attic space.
- And don’t forget that you shouldn’t wait around to repair or replace the roof when needed, it is one part of your home that is worth staying on top of.
In the end, a smaller investment is worth it to make sure that you are guaranteeing a well maintained roof. The little bits of extra work can go a long way toward helping prevent a loss down the road. If you suspect that you may have a moisture issue or water intrusion into your building from your roof, give our SERVPRO of Walker & Winston Counties team a call to help get your loss back to normal “Like it never even happened.”
SERVPRO Makes Their Own Products
Did you know that SERVPRO formulates and manufactures its own proprietary line of cleaning products? SERVPRO Corporate has a team of chemists on hand, that make up the Professional Cleaning Products Team. Listed below are some of the chemical categories:
- Spotting Agents
- Carpet and Upholstery Products
- Wood & Leather Care Products
- Decontamination Products
- Deodorization Products
- Ceiling and Wall Cleaning Products
- Hard Floor Care Products
- Specialty Products
- Coatings & Sealant Products
- Environmentally Friendly Products
We feel this is just one aspect of our company that sets us apart from our competition. SERVPRO knows what works and is always looking to better our products and come up with new ideas. Did we mention that they smell great too! Our products are for the exclusive use of SERVPRO franchises and are not for resale, but if we are working for you, we are using these wonderful products.
Call us today! We are here to help you.
After a Storm Hits, Check Your Roof!
1. Check your Landscape
After the storm is over, take a walk around your house to look for damage. Heavy winds can cause branches to fall from trees, as well as it is common for homeowners to find roof shingles in the yard. If you find either, you can assume your roof has been damaged and requires further inspection.
2. Check the Outside
If you don’t feel comfortable inspecting the top of your house, call a roofing company. However, a lot of damage can potentially be observed from a distance. Here are three common problems to look for:
- Curling, cracking or missing shingles
- Flashing on the chimney is loose or cracked
- Debris on your roof, such as tree branches
It is also smart to assess the gutter system if the gutters have standing water or are heavy (sagging), call a roofing company to repair them. If roofing problems aren’t addressed, the structure of the house may suffer.
3. Check the Inside
In many cases, there is no apparent damage on the outside, however, compromised roofs may form leaks that allow water in the ceiling or attic area. If there are moist spots on the ceiling or wet marks on the walls, there is a leak on your roof. Leaks must be fixed promptly, preventing further damage to the structure of the home and the belongings inside.
We Make the Claims Process Smooth
If you have suffered a disaster at your home or business the last thing you want is to worry about is how to handle the process of moving forward. For this reason, our team ensures they make the claim process as stress free as possible. SERVPRO of Russellville, Hamilton, and Fayette will help make it “Like it never even happened.”
Our goal is to make the insurance process as smooth as possible. Therefore, we will:
- Create thorough visual and written documentation of the damage to your home or business
- Document the condition of each item we remove for cleaning or storage
- Work directly with your insurer, communicating with you at all times
- Handle the paperwork to make sure the processing and payment of your claim is as fast as it can be
We are so proud that so many insurance companies recommend SERVPRO to their clients. They are fully aware of the benefits that come along with our partnership. We do everything we can to make the entire process as easy as possible.
Our trained professionals are here for you if you experience a disaster. Our technicians have specialized training and years of experience in water, fire, mold and bio-hazard clean up and restoration services.
Enjoy the Last Little Bit of Summer....
Summer is starting to slowly wind down, and school is about to start for many students. While you're getting those last minute BBQ parties in, there are several safety tips to keep in mind.
According to a recent study by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, nearly 11,900 Americans were injured by fireworks in 2015, with the majority happening in the month surrounding the Fourth of July. Another 8,700 are injured by charcoal/wood-burning and propane grill fires. A grill should always be supervised when in use. Keep children and pets a safe distance from the grilling area to prevent accidental burns or tipping of the grill.
Grills also cause an average of 8,900 home structure or outdoor fires. "These fires caused an annual average of 50 civilian injuries and $2 million in direct property damage," according to the National Protection Association (NFPA).
Summer is a time to enjoy the great outdoors, but it is also important to keep safety in mind. Consider the following tips, provided by the National Fire Protection Association, to keep you and your family safe all summer long.
- When using a charcoal grill, only use starter fluids designed for barbecue grills; do not add fluid after coals have been lit.
- When using a gas grill, ensure the hose connection is tight; check hoses for leaks. Applying soapy water to the hoses will easily and safely reveal any leaks.
- When camping, always use a flame-retardant tent and set up camp far away from the campfire.
- Always build a campfire downwind from the tent area. Clear vegetation and dig a pit before building your fire. Extinguish the fire before going to sleep or leaving the campsite.
- Store liquid fire starter (not gasoline) away from your tent and campfire and only use dry kindling to freshen a campfire.
If you enjoy lounging by the pool or going for a boat ride to cool off for the summer sun, make sure you exercise caution, especially when children are present. Only swim in approved areas and supervise children at all times when near the water.
Best Storm Shutters For Your Home
When it comes to protecting your home or business, from damaging winds, there are many things to consider. If you want to add storm shutters to your home, it can be overwhelming to review the numerous types. While there is no one-size-fits-all solution for protecting your home, learning the basics can help you choose wisely. Here are some of the options you may consider:
If you live in an area with frequent storms and severe weather, you may consider adding permanent storm shutters to your home. Permanent mounts add protection and aesthetic flair to your home. You can choose from accordion, Bahama, Colonial, or rolling shutters, all of which provide both storm protection and an element of design. Prices and styles vary within each category. Manually-operated accordion-style options generally cost $15-$25 per square foot of window area, while rolling shutters, generally made of high-quality metal or polycarbonate, will cost approximately $20-$30 per square foot of window area. Bahama-style awnings protect your home against the sun and high winds alike and are sold in standard window sizes for $15-$20 per square foot. Colonial-style varieties offer the most diversity as they come in numerous materials and are sold in sets for $200-$500 per window.
Though temporary fixtures may be less visually appealing, they are equally functional for storm protection. Fabric storm panels, made of PVC or mesh, are a budget-friendly choice that generally costs $75-$300 depending on the size of your windows. A sturdier and more protective option is plywood. Though less pleasing to look at, plywood costs only $1 per square foot and is an effective temporary way to protect your home from intense storms.
Preparation is important when you're facing tornadoes and high winds. When the storm passes, know who to call for help with clean up and restoration to get your home back to a clean and safe state.
Clogged Dryer Vents Can Be Dangerous to Your Home
Dryers come equipped with a lint trap to catch and collect the lint and tiny threads that come off of clothing when residents in Fort Collins do their laundry. Over time, larger items, such as broken zippers, can wear tiny holes into the trap. These holes can permit lint to pass through the trap and into the duct. When clogs develop in the interior of the duct, heat can build up and result in a fire.
When a home suffers a fire damage because of a clogged duct or exterior vent, fire damage can occur. This is not the only way that a fire can occur, though, and clothing that ignites while in the dryer causes almost as many fires. Our technicians can help you undo the damage and restore your home.
Just like we remove charred materials like burnt drywall sections, wooden trim, and destroyed personal belongings, we also remove and replace ducts and vents. SERVPRO helps homeowners prevent such fires by cleaning out ductwork and all related vents. A fire can start in other ducts, unrelated to the dryer, and we can reduce the risk in these areas, also.
Cleaning up and removing any destroyed materials makes it much easier for repair work to happen. Doing so also removes any dangers present that could harm you or your children. Pets can also end up injured when they wander into areas that contain fire damage. A fire, no matter how small, can cause a family to experience enough stress without the added crisis of an injury.
Sorting through the laundry, both unwashed and already laundered, reveals which items suffer from fire-related defects. We can often remove smoke damage on unique or one-of-a-kind clothing items. The fire's heat can also cause other problems to items in the immediate area. Drying racks and shelves can become unsightly messes, but the small endeavor of installing new ones can help make everything "Like it never even happened."
SERVPRO of Walker & Winston Counties serves the residents of our beautiful city and the surrounding areas when any fire damage adversely affects a home.