Recent Posts

How Long is Too Long to Wait to Call SERVPRO...

9/8/2021 (Permalink)

How does SERVPRO of Oak Park-River Forest determine how to handle smoke damaged items?

Temperature, whether the fire is smoldering or blazing, as well as materials burned, each affect necessary cleanup measures differently. To make matters worse smoke particles can easily penetrate any crack and crevice. When not handled properly, particles will leave a smoke odor behind that lasts months after a fire. Proper ventilation, consistent debris removal, proper cleaning and immediate odor neutralizing efforts are critical to saving as many of your belongings as possible. However, timing is THE most crucial component of successful smoke remediation.  

Are you running out of time?

The IIRC (Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification), a globally recognized leader in all types of remediation, identifies these time windows:

  • Within minutes
    Porous materials and synthetics must be immediately addressed to prevent permanent discoloration.
  • Within hours to days
    Wooden furniture, flooring, painted walls, and clothing can become permanently stained if not addressed within hours to days of damage, and metal surfaces will at this point begin to rust, pit, and corrode, requiring refinishing or replacement.
  • Within weeks
    Prolonged soot exposure will embed itself in the fibers and surfaces, resulting in a longer, more costly restoration with a higher likelihood of replacement.

What Makes SERVPRO Stand Out?

8/27/2021 (Permalink)

As a restoration company, our aim is to be the trusted resource among clients. We ensure that we follow industry standard protocols. Our staff members go through IICRC (Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration) training to be best prepared for all the services we offer. They are also certified with OSHA, Lead, and Asbestos awareness. We maintain a large inventory of equipment for residential and commercial work. The extensive list was added to this past week with more equipment being sent to our team. Air movers, dehumidification equipment, air scrubbers, specialty drying equipment including desiccants and generators all help complete the work in a timely manner. Lastly, our team members utilize technology and client documentation to make sure that everything is recorded properly. Our proprietary software that documents and records all the essential information is needed to make sure that these pieces are easily accessible. 

Why SERVPRO

8/27/2021 (Permalink)

Faster Response

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

Resources to Handle Floods and Storms

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

SERVPRO of Oak Park-River forest specializes in the cleanup and restoration of residential and commercial property after a fire, smoke or water damage event. We can handle any size disaster!

Call us at (708) 483-8636!

Commercial Cleaners Create a Safer and Healthy Workspace

8/27/2021 (Permalink)

Safety is a priority for a business owner for their employees and customers. The right janitorial company can play a crucial role in preventing workplace injuries and illnesses. It can also help keep your business in compliant with health and safety regulations. When a customer or employee walk into a facility a key factor to prevent an injury or an illness is to make sure the following items have been done:

Help prevent slips, trips and falls inside and outside your building:

  • Parking Lots and Sidewalks – Check for potholes, uneven walkways, broken parking blocks. Properly mark any changes in elevation of walkways. Correctly mark all parking spaces.
  • Inside Building: Install non- slip mats in front of doors to wipe wet feet. Place same mats in front of ice machines, sinks and drinking fountains. If there are wet floors, place caution signs.

Proper Lighting and Electrical Components:

  • Make sure all emergency lighting is installed and checked regularly to make sure they are working. All exit signs are always visible and illuminated.
  • In bathrooms and kitchens should have ground fault breakers. Make sure workstation outlets are not overloaded which could cause a fire.

Cleanliness of Workspace:

  • Daily disinfecting of bathrooms and cafeterias to stop cross-contamination of the spreading of germs from colds and flu.

Emergency Fire Equipment:

  • Make sure all fire alarms, smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors are hardwired with a battery backup and are checked on a regular basis.
  • Check fire escapes to make sure they are functioning and clear of any objects or debris.
  • Sprinkler System is up to code and has been inspected and records kept on file.
  • Portable Fire Extinguishers should be kept on each floor of the building and easily accessible. Teach each employee how to properly use an extinguisher. The National Fire Prevention Association (NFPA) suggests remembering the word PASS: Pull the pin. Hold the nozzle pointing away from you and release the locking mechanism. Aim low. Point the extinguisher at the base of the fire. Squeeze the lever slowly and evenly. Sweep the nozzle from side-to-side.

A safe workspace keeps employees productive, attract customers, and protects your business from potential lawsuits. Keeping employees and customers safe isn’t just the right thing to do, it’s also important for your business. 

Tips for Disinfecting Your Office

8/27/2021 (Permalink)

Keeping a clean office environment should be a priority for your company. This will prevent the spread of germs and keep people healthier year-round.

Here are four tips for disinfecting your office:

1.) Wipe surfaces in one direction.

If you wipe a surface one direction and then go back the opposite direction, you are going to spread the germs right back on the surface. A swift wipe in one direction will be most effective in removing germs from a surface.

2.) Make sure you're using the right chemicals.

Make sure you are using the right chemicals for disinfecting. Each cleaning product should be labeled with its intended purpose. 

3.) Make sure you get to all of the high-tough areas.

High-touch areas should be at the top of your list for disinfecting. This includes things such as chairs, stair railings, telephones, restroom surfaces and coffee pot handles/dispensers.

4.) Make handwashing a priority in your business.

Stressing the importance of handwashing in your office will go a long ways in preventing the unnecessary spread of germs.

SERVPRO of Oak Park-River Forest specializes in the cleanup and restoration of residential and commercial property after a fire, smoke or water damage event. However, we offer fogging and deep cleaning of commercial space to keep you and your business healthy!

Call us at (708) 483-8636!

How To Prepare Your Home For A Storm

8/13/2021 (Permalink)

Quick guide to preparing for a storm

    • Ensure your drains and gutters are clear of debris to prevent blockages.
    • If safe to do so, check your pipes and water tanks are insulated to prevent freezing and that the release point of overflow pipes is not obstructed. Ideally, you'll have a regular maintenance program in place.
    • Cut back trees and branches to minimize the risk of falling branches.
    • Secure loose fences.
    • Check that roof tiles and aerials are secure if you can do this safely. It may be worth seeking professional advice.
    • Make sure garden furniture and ladders are secured in case of high winds or locked away in the shed or even inside your house.
    • When you know a bad storm is on its way with warnings about gale-force winds and floods, make sure children, pets and your family and neighbors are safe. Make sure you're indoors when it hits and don’t try and repair damage during a storm.

Always be cautious when undertaking any task that you're not fully familiar with as you could injure yourself or those around you, seek professional help where required.

So make sure you're storm ready. Secure loose objects such as ladders and garden furniture. Close and secure all windows and doors. Check on loved ones before a storm strikes, but once it arrives, stay indoors. Do not try to drive or move around outside near trees or buildings that could collapse.

If you experience storm damage give us a call at (708)483-8636.

5 Household Appliances that Can Cause Water Damage

8/13/2021 (Permalink)

When thinking about areas in your home that are prone to water damage, you should think about these 5 appliances that can cause the most leaks in your home. 

1.Refrigerator- In terms of leaking coming from a refrigerator, there are two likely culprits. The first being a blocked defrost drain. This drain can be blocked with food particles or other debris and can eventually lead to water leaking from the refrigerator. Make sure to check this area of the refrigerator if you are experiencing a leak. Also, the water supply line that feeds water to your ice machine could leak. Make sure to check connections. 

2.Dishwasher- Another appliance that is prone to leaks is a dishwasher. While there are many different mechanical problems that could cause leaks, like a faulty float switch or a clogged drain, a common leak from a dishwasher is when the wrong detergent or too much detergent is used. 

3.Washing Machine- Washing machines have many things that could cause leaks. If you notice a leak coming from your washing machine, make sure to check all connections (inlet and hose) and also the floor drain, which could be clogged. Check your owners manual, unplug the washing machine and turn off the water main. Troubleshoot all possible areas where the leak could be coming from. 

4. Water Heaters- The main leaks relating to water heaters are due to a malfunctioning temperature and pressure relief valve, a leaky plumbing connection or corrosion in the water tank itself. You can test the valve by flushing water through to clear any debris. If corrosion is the problem, you will need to replace the water heater. 

5.Toilets- Toilets overflow because they have clogged drain or because the float is malfunctioning, which allows too much water into the tank. If plunging doesn’t solve the problem, the problem may be in the pipes outside, which would require a professional plumber. 

If you have experienced water damage in your home, please contact SERVPRO of Oak Park-River Forest at (708)483-8636.

Top 10 Fire Hazards in the Home

8/13/2021 (Permalink)

While the expert team of SERVPRO of Oak Park-River Forest is here to help if you experience a fire disaster below you will find the top 10 Fire hazards in the home.

1. Electrical Outlet Issues

The top cause of House Fires in the United States stem from issues with electrical outlets. In 2020, we are using more electronic devices than ever, and doing so we oftentimes are using too many on a single outlet. To help prevent fires be sure to not exceed your voltage on a single outlet in your home.

2. Outdated Home Wiring

Household wiring should be checked routinely to avoid circumstances that trigger major fire damage in your home. Often times wiring that is outdated, worn, or even compromised from animals can cause fire hazards in and outside your home.

3. Decorative Lights

With Halloween and Christmas right around the corner, be sure to take the proper precaution when using decorative lights including outside lights, plugs, surge protectors, extension cords, and turning off your Christmas Tree Lighting when you are not home to minimize risks.

4. Hair Products

When in a rush, do not forget to unplug your styling products. A simple mistake can result in huge damages. Make sure that your curling iron and hair dryers are off and placed on heatproof material to help reduce the chances of a fire.

5. Toasters

Proper care of your toaster can help to prevent house fires. Crumbs inside the toaster can be dangerous as they can cause sparks which leads to hazardous problems in the kitchen. Make sure to clean your toaster routinely.

6. Candles

We all love candles and aromas however we need to be cautious of placement and be sure to put them out prior to going to bed or leaving the house. Always try to place candles in holders that prevent them from falling on surfaces or tabletops.

7. Washer & Dryers

Washer and Dryers are a leading cause of fires. Routine maintenance and cleaning can help to prevent fire hazards by cleaning filters and vents as well as the outside vents of the home.

8. Smoking

If you are a smoker or someone smokes in the home, try to do so outside. Always keep lighters and matchsticks out of reach of your children as this is one of the top causes of home fires.

9. Dust in Electric Sockets

This is a recurring process as the dust piles inside electrical sockets and if not cleaned regularly may ignite and result in fire hazards.

10. Electric Blankets

While they do wonders to keep us warm in the winter, Electric Blankets can cause fires. Be sure to use an electric blanket that doesn’t have too much wear and tear. When not in use, do not fold the blankets as it helps prevent electrical issues that lead to fire hazards.

Should you experience home fire damage, let the experts at SERVPRO of Oak Park-River Forest help restore your home “Like it never even happened.” With our 24/7 emergency dispatch, we will have someone on-site quickly to access the damage and help you in your time of need.

3 Steps To Repair The Envelope Of Your Building

7/23/2021 (Permalink)

Find Moisture Leaks

Wear and tear, damage from pests, missing roof shingles, and sagging doors and windows could all provide a way for moisture to get into your building. A visual inspection may be enough to find out how water is getting into the building. Inspect flashings, edges of doors and walls, expansion joints, and everywhere that one material meets up with another material. Remember that some water damage, such as black mold growth, can't always be found with a visual inspection. Once or twice a year, you should schedule professional inspections.

Contact Repair Professionals

Sometimes property owners are tempted to ignore leaks until substantial problems arise. This can become a very expensive mistake. Instead, it's best to contact professionals with the training and supplies necessary to repair existing rain damage and prevent more water from getting past the building envelope.

Improve Preventative Measures

One area of damage is usually a sign that there's widespread damage. It's rare that one spot of damage is an isolated occurrence. A single gap between the window corner and the exterior wall should prompt you to update the sealing around all of the windows. Make sure that routine maintenance and professional inspections are scheduled consistently throughout the year.

The best way to protect the protective envelope of your building from rain damage is regular inspections and repairs completed by water damage repair and reconstruction professionals. Be proactive when it comes to protecting your building from expensive damage.

Keeping Your Home Safe from Storm Damage

7/23/2021 (Permalink)

Storms can come upon us without much warning. Yes, we watch the news, but bad weather is still unpredictable, so we need to take steps to keep our homes safe from storm damage.

An inspection of your home’s premises is a really good idea to conduct before inclement weather hits. A leaky roof or windows can cause big problems during extreme conditions such as a snow storm or heavy rains. Do all your exterior doors and windows fit correctly? When’s the last time you took a look at your roof to see how things are looking up there? These are all great questions to ask yourself.

Loose shutters and rain gutters can present a real problem in high winds, as can unstable large trees. It might be a good idea to trim back trees and bushes with large heavy branches that are not in good condition, so that windows and vehicles are not in danger of storm damage in windy conditions.

Many homes in older cities have drainage ditches at the front of the property. Take time to inspect this area and remove debris or dirt that might obstruct the flow of water from a heavy rain. A clogged drainage ditch can cause a lot of damage by flooding your property during, or even after, a storm.

Your family is very precious to you. In the event of a storm, do you have a system in place that will help you to get information to everyone in case of a weather emergency? Most of us use our cell phones to communicate these days, but in the case of a bad storm, your cell phone service could be at risk. You might consider installing a good old-fashioned landline, just in case. If you or a family member gets stuck at work or out doing errands, families will worry, so it’s vital that lines of communication stay open.

SERVPRO of Oak Park-River Forest specializes in the cleanup and restoration of residential and commercial property after a fire, smoke or water damage event. We can handle any size disaster!

Call us at (708) 483-8636!