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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Archived Blog Posts

Tips for Dealing With Sewage Damage

6/7/2019 (Permalink)

Tips For Dealing With Sewage Damage

A sewer backup must surely be among the least pleasant of messes to clean up. The foul odors and the potential for extensive property destruction are just the beginning of the problem. Sewer cleanup requires a lot of time and hard work. Before you get into it, however, spend time doing a bit of research to make sure you get the results you want. 

Prevent Contamination From Spreading

  • Respond to damage immediately
  • Keep family and pets out of the affected area.
  • Wear protective clothing and gear while in the area.
  • Open windows or doors to provide ventilation, but don't run the air conditioning system.

Whether the backup is the result of trouble sewer line or the result of a flooded toilet in your home, take the same precautions to control damage. For example, before you do any sewer cleanup work, turn off the electrical power to the area.

Tips for Sewage Backup Response 

There are several other tips you should use while responding to the sewer backup. 

  • Don't use the water in your home until you've had a safety inspection. This means turning off the running water for showers and toilets as well as in your kitchen.
  • Remove uncontaminated belongings and furnishings from the area.
  • Alert municipal authorities to the backup. You may also need to contact the health department, depending on the extent of the situation.
  • Call water damage restoration technicians. These technicians have the training and the tools to thoroughly clean and disinfect your home.
  • Contact your insurance company and notify them of the spill in your home. Take pictures of the damage for insurance purposes before belongings are cleaned or repaired. 

The best option when dealing with sewer cleanup is to let professionals handle the work. After taking immediate action to prevent the spread of damage, call SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana anytime at (217) 355-0077.

(SB)

Residential Lightning Damage Happens More than You Think

6/4/2019 (Permalink)

Strikes happen an average of twice a year!

Here at SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana, we can help you with fire damages caused by lightning strikes. When the lightning hits a residence, it travels through the electrical lines to one of the home’s electrical boxes, which can catch fire. These fires can leave severe damage, including smoke damage to your home. SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana’s mitigation team has the ability to do a chem-sponge technique that is used to clean soot off of the walls. In doing this, SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana can ensure that no fire damage or smoke damage goes untreated. If needed, affected walls in all damaged rooms can be painted after the cleanup is completed and drywall replaced where necessary. Our professional in-house crew use a white-glove treatment on your residence and can complete the entire project quickly; from the first contact to completion. Here at SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana, we are proud to serve the residents of Champaign/Urbana, Illinois, especially when the worst happens. Why chose SERVPRO? Because in the event of fire or water damage, large or small, we’re here to help. Call us in Champaign/Urbana at (217)355-0077.  [JB]

Surgical Water Restoration

5/30/2019 (Permalink)

Imagine you come home for lunch on a Wednesday afternoon and you walk into your living room covered with 8 inches of water.

What do you do?

Who do you call?

Do you call your family, friend, a local contractor, or Water Restoration Company?

What is the difference?

There are many differences between contractors and Water Restoration Companies. Here are a few:

  • A contractor’s job is to replace everything that is affected. This will include all flooring, walls, cabinets and even furniture. SERVPRO is certified in drying water damage to industry standards. We will not remove materials unless it is necessary. This prevents further interruption to your daily life.
  • A contractor will have to replace all of the materials they took out of your home. This can take weeks waiting for material decisions, insurance approval, shipping, and installation time. SERVPRO’s average drying time is only 3 days. We have crews available 24/7/356 and someone to monitor your job daily.
  • Replacing flooring, drywall, and all of your furniture is expensive. Restoring your home is a lot less expensive than replacing everything in your home.

When you call SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana you can expect a First Responder on site within an hour and your home to be restored quickly by certified, professional technicians.  Reach us at (217)355-0077! [JB}

Science of Drying

5/21/2019 (Permalink)

The knowledge of psychrometrics is essential to restoring a water damaged structure to its preloss condition. Your first reaction will be to grab towels and a mop to clean up the water, maybe even a fan or two. Our professionals are trained in the science of drying and follow strict industry-approved standards to help lower the chances of any secondary damages. SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana will inspect to detect everything that is wet, measure how much moisture is in the wet materials, monitor whether the materials are drying properly, and also speed up the process by using professional drying equipment. 

We use the latest technology and tools; The SERVPRO DryBook allows us to capture and track the steps of a restoration project according to industry best practices and standards. This will ensure that your restoration is done properly and efficiently as well as improving results and restoring your property faster! 

[JB]

Maintaining your HVAC and Avoiding Poor Indoor Air

5/15/2019 (Permalink)

Make sure the HVAC in your home or office is checked regularly to avoid poor indoor air quality.

As the winter chill melts away with the warmth of the sun, that can only mean one thing – the scorching hot days are around the corner. The new season is not just for spring cleaning, it is also a great time to check the HVAC system in your home and office. Checking it twice a year (the fall and the spring are the best times) will extend the life of your unit and will let you breathe better air. If the ductwork of your home or business has not been checked in a while, the air quality can be poor and lead to:

  • Odors
  • Dirt and debris
  • Pollen
  • Dust
  • Other contaminants

Our professionals routinely clean and inspect heating, ventilation and air conditioner unit (or the HVAC). Give us a call at SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana, 217-355-0077 to have one of our experts go out and inspect it before those heat waves come.  [JB]

Why Board-Up After A Fire is Important.

5/10/2019 (Permalink)

If your property in Champaign/Urbana has experienced a fire, there are several reasons why you might want to board up structural damage or windows. In addition to keeping the external elements out of a building with fire damage, boarding up can also prevent additional losses due to looting and make the fire cleanup process easier.  SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana offers full-service restoration specialists who can also assist in board-up services.  

Here are four reasons to board-up after a fire!

  • In a commercial setting, there may still be viable stock on the premises. If products that appear viable remain in the building, you should consider boarding up. These items may require assessment, cleaning and may not be fit for sale, but having them properly processed rather than stolen can be helpful for insurance purposes.
  • You want to protect electronics and other valuables. Depending on the extent of the fire damage, you may be able to restore some electronics or other valuable property to working condition.
  • You need to keep out the elements. If the structure of your property has extensive damage, you should try to keep the elements out to prevent additional damage. Exposure to additional water, wind, or sunlight can compound the damage caused by smoke residue and soot.
  • You want to limit soot damage as well. It is generally a good idea to reduce foot traffic on the scene of a recent fire. When soot gets embedded into carpeting or upholstery, it can be much more difficult to restore these materials to a pre-fire condition.

Talk to our experts at SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana to board up any structure, which is always a good strategy for preventing further loss and limiting damage after a fire. Your major concern is likely to be how to recover from fire damage as quickly and completely as possible. Preventing looting and exposure to the elements can make fire cleanup more successful. Call SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana anytime at (217) 355-0077.

(SB)

When Vandalism Strikes, Here's What To Do

5/3/2019 (Permalink)

Unwanted graffiti can be a hassle to clean without the professionals on your side.

The sad fact is that graffiti happens all the time. It can be a senior prank in high school or out of sheer intentional mischief. Whatever the reason was, it decreases the overall beauty of the school or office building. SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana has a few suggestions when you first discover the graffiti.

DO:

  • Vacuum any glass particles that may have ended up in carpets and upholstery
  • Hose down or wash any egg damage from the building exterior as soon as possible
  • Save any containers with the ingredients of spilled inks, cosmetics, and paints
  • Make sure to keep a record of all damage when possible. Pictures work best to document everything.

If you are in need of commercial cleaning services, give us a ring at 217-355-0077.  [JB]

4 Steps Toward Safeguarding Businesses From Storm Damage.

5/3/2019 (Permalink)

4 Steps Toward Safeguarding Businesses from Storm Damage

Even businesses with strong disaster plans are affected by major storms, flooding, or fires. Forty percent of all businesses affected by disasters won't open their doors again. Within one year after the mess has been cleaned up, another 25 percent will fail. This is bad news for just about everyone involved. Fortunately, insurance providers, business owners, and community leaders can take preventative steps before disaster recovery is necessary. 

1. Establish Written Business Continuity Plan

These documents should contain the procedures to take when disasters threaten, during disasters, and during the recovery period. For example, if storm damage is severe, business owners may need to relocate the workplace temporarily. Other elements of this plan may include phone trees, information technology procedures, and emergency evacuation responsibilities. 

2. Schedule Regular Employee Trainings

It isn't enough to cover these storm response procedures in one workshop. Employees need to be familiar and comfortable enough with the steps that they remember and carry them out with ease. When employees are clear about their individual responsibilities and have performed them several times in non-emergency situations, they are more likely to respond calmly during a disaster. 

3. Keep Emergency Supplies Handy

The right equipment and supplies are vital to the success of a disaster recovery plan. Business owners should have first-aid kits, flashlights, and other emergency supplies within easy reach for employees. Other equipment, such as clean water, food, a generator, and even blankets could further safeguard the well-being of company personnel. 

4. Store Copies of Key Information in Multiple Sites

During a storm, it may be impossible to access phone numbers through workplace computers. After a flood, in-house copies of insurance policies may have been thoroughly damaged; a hard copy kept in another location could provide needed information. Contact information for cleanup and recovery professionals should be included. 

Successful disaster recovery actually begins long before storms hit Champaign/Urbana. Communities, business leaders, and insurance professionals can do their part in protecting residents by providing documents and resources that increase participation in business continuity plans. SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana will be glad to help you establish an emergency plan as well! Call (217) 355-0077 if you would like to set up an appointment.

(SB)

Competitive Restoration Prices

4/30/2019 (Permalink)

When it comes to pricing for the restoration work we provide, you will never find hidden costs or misleading fees.

You will always get the great quality work SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana is known for at a reasonable price. When we create estimates for our customers, we use the exact same program that insurance companies use. This program shows us the different services we offer and provides us a dollar amount.   

With 29 years of experience under our belts, it is safe to say we are seasoned. We have the knowledge to know where the loss of your disaster came from and what we need to do to fix it. As a nationally (and internationally) known and respected brand, you can trust that you are in the best hands to handle the emergency.

Don’t be tricked with other companies claiming cheaper prices. Oftentimes, we receive “fix-it” jobs left from the other guys. We understand how frustrating it can be to have a company work on your home, just to have to call us to finish what they started.

There are many businesses out there claiming they have the greatest quality work at the cheapest prices. With SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana on your side, you will receive honest quality estimates and honest quality work, ALWAYS. Give us a call at 217-355-0077 and we will work with you every step of the way.   [JB]

Soda Blasting – Everything you need to know

4/25/2019 (Permalink)

Soda Blasting involves one of the softer abrasive blasting materials, rating an average 2.4 on the Mohs scale of mineral hardness (1-10). Most abrasive blasting cabinets aim to maximize abrasive recycles and minimizing dust collector service, and for this reason, most sandblasting uses harder abrasives like plastic and glass beads. Soda blasting is the exception, a one-time-use abrasive, used for special applications when recycling abrasive is not important.

Soda Blasting: The Good

The main advantage of soda blasting is it’s a cost-efficient, single-use abrasive. Although recycling abrasive is the name of the game for most abrasive blasting applications, there are a few special applications not needing to recycle abrasive. Onetime use abrasives are used for applications like ship cleaning that require huge amounts of abrasive – it typically takes one million pounds of abrasive for an average ship – or maybe a smaller amount for the back bed of an old truck. Additionally, soda is the primary abrasive to clean oily parts because once it removes the oil; the abrasive doesn’t cycle back through to hit the part again. Soda is also water soluble making sure no abrasive remains in critical bearing areas!

Six Rules for Soda Blasting Success

  1. Always use a direct pressure abrasive delivery system that uses lower blasting pressure to maximize abrasive velocity without reaching maximum soda impact velocity
  2. Never blast using more than 30 to 35 psi pressure when using direct pressure delivery
  3. Always use a ghost flow out the nozzle to prevent Soda flooding and or slower cleaning
  4. Use equipment designs that understand the proper use of soda and collection of spent soda
  5. Know that soda used at higher pressure will surface etch and change part metallurgy.
  6. Exceeding maximum impact velocity will simply create a failed soda blasting cabinet with a failed dust collector.

Soda Blasting: The Bad

Because soda is now so popular, manufacturers and retailers are offering sub par quality soda blast cabinet to make a quick buck. They do not know the nuances of soda as an abrasive nor do they understand its limitations.

Yes, soda has important characteristics, but it’s not a magic bullet. Soda cannot be recycled the way other abrasives like steel shot, steel grit, silicon carbide, aluminum oxide, garnet, and ceramic, glass or plastic beads. Being that soda is so soft; it explodes into tiny fragments upon impact with the object being blasted. Additionally, soda abrasive doesn’t work harden the part being cleaned because it’s meant to be used a low abrasive velocity.

Soda Blasting: The Ugly

Today, because of the need for a soluble abrasive like soda, you see everyone selling soda blasting cabinets. Unless you have very few parts to blast or blast only a few times a month for minutes all these blasting cabinets that are supposed to contain the soda will soon be the biggest mess you could possibly imagine all with failed dust collectors.

The problem is that some retailers sell cheap slag and soda to blast cabinet operators. Often, the operator thinks the soda can be recycled and runs the machine in excess of 60 psi in a siphon delivery system or 30-35 psi in a direct pressure delivery system. This causes the abrasive to explode on impact, severely reducing visibility and simultaneously creating tiny particles that are sucked into the dust collector – leaving the cabinet kaput.

Pro Tip: If the dust collector gets packed with soda abrasive, the blasting cabinet fails, it’s that simple. 

Media Blast offers three duty cycle soda cabinet models: the Blizzard Soda Blast Cabinet, the N-200 Soda and the Pro Soda. Each is matched to a specific usage – recreational to industrial. Each model provides users an environmentally friendly clean part with its original finish intact, free from trace oil residue. If you think soda blasting is right for your application, Media Blast can supply you with a soda blast cabinet with superior visibility that keeps soda out of the dust collector to ensure your needs are met with minimal machine maintenance.

Learn more about SERVPRO and Soda Blasting by contacting our Champaign/Urbana office at (217)355-0077! Any time day or night, someone is ready to take your call. 

Have you Considered upgrading your commercial HVAC system?

4/25/2019 (Permalink)

If you are a business owner you know how important it is to have a fully functioning HVAC system.  If you don’t your employees and customers will let you know.  It will be hot or cold and you really are trying to keep it going and keep people comfortable.  Maybe your HVAC system is older and not functioning properly?  You may be thinking to yourself that is too expensive… but in the long run, it may be worth it.  

Here are five reasons to consider upgrading your HVAC System from

Increase Energy Efficiency

Lower operating costs should be one of your biggest goals. Even if it isn’t as much of a priority now, there’s still time to resolve to change now that the New Year has begun. One fantastic way to increase energy efficiency is to upgrade your current commercial HVAC system. Did you know that a newer system can allow for smaller energy consumption – by about 30%, in fact.

Maintain Your Good Reputation

Many businesses depend on a stellar reputation to ensure that they thrive. Reputation is important for your public image, especially in the customer service sector. Aside from downtime that could rob you of future profits, an uncomfortable building environment due to an aging HVAC system can also harm customer and client perception of how you run your organization. 

Make and Keep Employees Comfortable

When the interior of your building is kept at reasonable temperatures, your employees will be comfortable. When employees are comfortable, they will be happier and more motivated. When they aren’t distracted by the office being too hot or too cold, they can focus on getting more work done, improving their overall productivity. Don’t overlook the importance of indoor air quality, either. How often are your employees missing time from work due to being sick? A little-known condition called sick building syndrome exists, and if this syndrome goes unaddressed, it could affect how your business is perceived throughout your industry and cause highly-qualified candidates to find employment elsewhere when you are actively recruiting.

Reduce Repair Costs

Newer commercial HVAC systems will have better warranties attached to them. Whether you choose to overhaul your existing system with brand new components or only add the latest technological advancements to the framework that is already in place, these warranties can help you avoid paying significant repair costs when such repairs are needed.

Begin Switching Refrigerant Now

The refrigerant that is most commonly used in many older models of commercial HVAC systems is being eliminated. R-22 refrigerant will be fully prohibited in January of 2020, and if you think that’s still plenty of time to have your current supplies replaced, remember it’s just two years away.

SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana

(217)355-0077

24-Hour Emergency Service

Independently Owned and Operated

Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

3 Important Facts About Black Mold.

4/19/2019 (Permalink)

While some types of mold that exist in your Champaign/Urbana home can be simple to clean up, others can even be dangerous. Of all mold types, black mold, can be the most difficult to eliminate. If you find this fungus growing in your home, it can be important to learn about the possible reasons for its presence and what you can do to remove it. 


1. It Is Not a Surface Fungus 

Unlike other types of fungi, such as mildew, black mold cannot be wiped away easily with a rag and a household cleanser. This is due to the way it grows, as it sinks roots deep into building surfaces like wood and drywall. This makes mold cleanup difficult, especially if the fungus has been present for some time. 

2. It Can Appear Less Than 24 Hours After a Flood 

Black mold can grow rapidly after the introduction of moisture and humidity. For example, if a weather event caused your home to flood, the dirty water can encourage mold growth almost right away. As a result, walls, floors and carpeting may start to show signs of this type of mold as early as that same day. You can identify it by its slimy dark surface, which differs from the type of dry, fuzzy mold you might find on old food. 

3. Professional Removal Might Be Required 

If you are experiencing a widespread infestation of black mold, then it is a good idea to call a mold remediation and removal service such as SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana for help. Not only can professional technicians properly identify the fungus, they can also give you options for removal and the restoration of building surfaces that have been affected. This may give you greater peace of mind that your home can be returned to normal. 

When black mold invades, it can be stressful for you as a Champaign/Urbana homeowner. Knowing as much as possible about this fungus can help you better understand your options when it comes to the cleanup process. If you feel like you have any mold problems call SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana at (217) 355-0077.

(SB)

Why SERVPRO? Because We Do It All!

4/17/2019 (Permalink)

We worry about your restoration emergency so you don't have to.

From start to finish, you will see that SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana will take care of your restoration emergency from start to finish. A fire, for example, can wreak havoc not only on your home or office but your precious time and checkbook too. There is no need to worry. Not only do we possess the experience, but the equipment and talent on our team to make sure the disaster looks like it never took place. After removing any drywall that is burned and unsalvageable, we will make sure your home down to the studs is clean and smelling great. Besides any demolition that needs to be done, we will begin reconstructing your home back to the way it was. This includes painting your walls as well. It will be like an entirely new room in your home.   

If you have recently experienced a restoration emergency, let our team here at SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana take care of everything so you don’t have to. We will always work with you each step of the way and make sure you are satisfied. Give us a call at (217)-355-0077 for more information.  [JB]

3 Ways SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana Can Help With Claim Services.

4/15/2019 (Permalink)

When your Champaign/Urbana business is hit by fire, storm, or water damage a quick emergency response time can make all the difference. However, after the crisis has been averted you may be left with some restoration needs. Choosing a professional restoration service, such as SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana, to do the job can be made easier by looking at those recommended by your insurance provider. In many cases they may recommend a company that offers a number of claim services, which can speed the process along.

1. They Can Provide a Claims Inventory Service

One service offered by SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana is a claims inventory. This may include both an itemized list, and photographs of any important items that may have suffered damage. Having such a list can help your business go over any items they may need to repair or replace such as inventory, office equipment, or any important documentation.

2. They Allow You to Access Claims Information Electronically

Another important inclusion in the offered claim services is the ability to access claims information electronically. This may include photographs, the notice of loss, job estimates, progress completed, and any new information that may be discovered during the process. This can allow you and your insurance agent to stay up-to-date every step of the way.

3. They Restore Materials Whenever Possible

One aspect the insurance agent may appreciate when working with such a company, is the fact that they try to restore the existing materials whenever possible. Restoration is often cheaper than a full replacement, and in many cases is a fully viable option. This may not only save your company money, but can help your claim as well.

Working with a restoration company recommended by your insurance provider, like SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana, will make your restoration process easier. These companies may offer a variety of claim services which can make communicating with your insurance agents more efficient, and help you and your agent stay up-to-date on the information you need. If you have any questions feel free to always call SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana anytime at (217) 355-0077, to help with all of your claim services.

(SB)

3 Fire Hazards to Avoid This Spring

4/15/2019 (Permalink)

Springtime is such a fun, beautiful time of year. Stay safe out there!

The weather is warmer, the trees are blooming, and my allergies are killing me. Spring has officially sprung! That being said, there are still a wide variety of fire hazards that you should watch out for, even during the warm months.

1.Grills: Whether you’re cooking burgers for the family event or grilling up kabobs for dinner, you will inherently deal with a fire. Most are gas grills, which presents an even greater risk. In fact, the NFPA (https://www.nfpa.org/News-and-Research/Data-research-and-tools/US-Fire-Problem/Home-Grill-Fires) reports that an average of 9,600 home fires is caused by grilling each year. Here are some fire safety tips for the grill:

  • Always check for any potential fire hazards before firing up the grill.
  • If the grill does not light the first time, let the gas dissipate for at least 5 minutes before attempting to light the grill again.
  • Be sure the grill is clean before using to get rid of oil and gas residue.
  • Make sure the grill is set up in an open, outdoor area and keep it a good distance from the house and railings.
  1. Dryers: This is a fire hazard year round. In fact, the leading cause of clothes-dryer related fires is a failure to keep the lint baskets clean. Lint is combustible. Lint causes fires. It takes seconds to clean out the lint basket, so just make a habit of it when you get your clothes out of the dryer. If you have space for a clothesline in the spring and summer months - use it! There’s nothing better than fresh, air dried clothes. The NFPA also recommends cleaning out the vent pipe at least once a year so lint or other flammable particles do not get stuck in the vent pipe. 
  2. Outdoor Fire Pits and Bonfires: The necessary safety precautions for an outdoor fire pit are pretty obvious, but keep these in mind when you’re having a party on a cool spring night.
  • Always have an adult present around a fire. Never leave children unattended! 
  • Always have a bucket of water or a water hose available nearby if things get out of hand. 
  • Build the fire away from homes, porches, low-hanging trees, or any other fire hazards. 
  • Monitor the number of leaves, pine needles, paper, and other contents are fed into the fire since these items catch fire quickly and result in high flames and floating embers. 
  • Always put the fire out completely before leaving the fire unattended. Don't expect it to die down on its own!

We are always Here to Help when you need us. Call us at SERVPRO of Champaign-Urbana any time at (217)355-0077.  Happy Spring!

Levels of Commercial Damage in Champaign-Urbana, Illinois

4/12/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Champaign-Urbana handles not only residential damage and restoration but commercial as well.

There are three levels of commercial damage that are considered:

Level 1

Level 1 is a small commercial loss typically involving 15,000 square feet or less of affected floor space. If the facility was entirely affected, examples of a small commercial loss may include but are not limited to, a stand-alone retail establishment, a small church, a daycare facility, a small shopping center, a small warehouse or manufacturing facility, or a stand-alone administrative building. A Level 1 loss can also be a small portion of a much larger structure.

Level 2

Level 2 is a midsize commercial loss typically involving 15,000 to 60,000 square feet of affected floor space. The building or buildings involved are usually multi-level or greatly divided spaces. If the facility was entirely affected, examples of a Level 2 loss may include but are not limited to, a small multi-family property, a midsize church or school, a small shopping center, a multi-tenant administration facility, or a midsize warehouse or manufacturing facility. A Level 2 loss can also be just a portion of a much larger structure.

Level 3

Level 3 is a large commercial loss typically involving more than 60,000 square feet of affected floor space. The building or buildings involved will likely be large multi-level structures. If the facility was entirely affected, examples of a Level 3 loss can include, but are not limited to, a large church, hospital, school, or university; a large multi-family property; a mid- to high-rise retail or administration facility; a large industrial, manufacturing, or warehouse facility; or a large strip-style shopping center or shopping mall. This is the level at which it would be appropriate to refer to the project as a “large loss.”

Once our team determines the level of loss, the property is further assessed, and a team of appropriate size is dispatched to get the job done quickly and efficiently, and return your business to operation “Like it never even happened.”®

Reach us at (217)355-0077.

Cleaning Your Air Ducts, Is it Really That Important?

4/9/2019 (Permalink)

Ever think about what inside your air vents could look like?

Did you know that, in certain circumstances, Duct Cleaning can increase your efficiency by up to 40%? That's a lot of money back into your pocket every month. Duct Cleaning is a process that can differ depending on each air system we come across, but the end result is the same... clean-air, and more healthy home and atmosphere. We use special equipment to ensure the safety of the air quality in your home. This includes special filters, ventilation equipment, containment barriers, and more. (For safety reasons, professional duct cleaning is often performed when your home is unoccupied, such as nights and weekends)

Here are some preventative actions you can take to reduce your need for Duct Cleaning.

  1. You should be changing your air filter on a regular basis.
  2. Try to always maintain good housekeeping practices, including regular cleaning/dusting to reduce the likelihood of contaminants.
  3. Have your duct-work routinely inspected, and regularly schedule professional maintenance.

SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana

(217)355-0077

24-Hour Emergency Service

Independently Owned and Operated

Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Water Damage Timeline

4/9/2019 (Permalink)

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 contaminants can pose serious risks to occupants. [JB]

Your Time is Precious

4/8/2019 (Permalink)

When you need it done right and done fast, call SERVPRO of Champaign-Urbana.

Did you know when you hire us for maintenance cleaning, you get around-the-clock restoration services built with you in mind? Quality cleaning and quick response - that is the SERVPRO way.

Can't figure out how to get the job done? Call SERVPRO of Champaign-Urbana,  at (217)355-007, for all your emergency restoration needs. When you experience a fire, water or mold damage in your home or facility, you need fast response and the expertise to get the job done right, ensuring you can get back into operation as quickly as possible. Through it all, you expect the most reliable information and the very best service at a fair price.  [JB]

Are You Prepared for a Thunderstom?

4/2/2019 (Permalink)

During this time of year in Champaign-Urbana we can experience a lot of rain which can lead to thunderstorms. It’s important to be prepared and have a plan in place. Talk with your family and create an emergency plan for thunderstorms, floods, and tornadoes. Think about an emergency shelter and evacuation plan. Below we have a few suggestions to make sure you and your family are ready for whatever happens. 

Protect your electronics

Your electronics can get fried if they are not properly protected. Plug electronics into a surge protector to avoid damage during a storm. 

Prepare for power outages

Have battery-operated flashlights and lanterns in easy to get to places. Check on these items from time to time to make sure the batteries still work, replace them if necessary. Also, think about keeping the refrigerator and freezer doors shut to keep food from spoiling. If these food items rise above 40 degrees for 2 hours or more, they should be disregarded. Call your local power company to inform them of the outage and to get information regarding when the power should be restored. 

Stay away from power lines

Do not go near power lines should they fall to the ground, they can be very hazardous. Call 911 if you see downed power lines. 

Go inside when you hear thunder

If you hear thunder, it is likely that lightning is also occurring. Lightning can be dangerous, therefore, make sure to go inside when thunder occurs. 

Seek shelter

There are many different natural elements which can occur and be harmful when outside during a disaster. Therefore, during a storm, it is important to seek shelter and be safe. If your inside, a good place to be is at the lowest level of your home. If you have a basement or storm cellar you can hang out in until the storm passes. 

Keep an emergency kit ready

Consider putting together a kit of things you may want to have on hand during a storm. Items you may want to include would be water, non-perishable food, flashlights, blankets extra batteries, a radio, and a first aid kit. If you have an emergency does strike your home during a thunderstorm, SERVPRO of Champaign-Urbana is ready to help get your life back to normal. 

Call us in Champaign-Urbana, at (217)-355-0077 any time day or night, We are always ready to help. [JB]

How To Make an Office Fire Escape Plan

3/22/2019 (Permalink)

Every workplace needs a fire escape plan. This plan should be posted throughout a building and shared with all occupants. Be sure to train new employees and perform regular drills to ensure that the emergency escape plan will prove useful in the event of a fire.

Plan Evacuation Routes

Use an accurate floor plan to determine evacuation routes from every room in a structure. It is a good idea to do the following:

  • Identify primary and secondary routes
  • Ensure that routes are reasonable for occupants
  • Obtain equipment such as an escape ladder

Secondary routes may be less than ideal, but they should still be practical. Keep the age and physical condition of occupants in mind. Post the emergency escape plan at strategic locations.

Test Fire Detection and Suppression Equipment

Many commercial properties are equipped with advanced detection and suppression systems. A fire escape plan should include regular tests to ensure the functionality of detectors and sprinklers. Hardwired alarm systems should have battery backups, and it is important to replace batteries that function as a main or backup power source. Make sure that fire extinguishers are of the appropriate class and filled with suppressant.

Keep Track of Occupants

Every business should maintain a current contact list. This list should include these details:

  • Names
  • Contact information
  • Departments

Keep this list in a location where it can be accessed remotely or physically removed in the event of a fire. Every business should have a safe location where employees can gather outside. This place should be far enough away from the structure without being downwind.

An office fire escape plan may also identify which employees are responsible for attempting to evacuate critical contents. It is smart to plan ahead and back up important records off-site. If a fire damages a building in Champaign/Urbana rely on a mitigation and restoration company to resume business as soon as possible.

(SB)

Locally Owned Company with National Resources

3/22/2019 (Permalink)

We are proud to serve our local communities!

We are proud to be an active member of this community. SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana is locally owned and operated, so we’re already nearby and ready to help Champaign-Urbana Illinois residents and business owners with any size cleaning or restoration emergencies.

Call SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana for any Fire, Water, Smoke or Soot damage in your home or business. Reach us any time day or night at (217)355-0077. Our 24-hour emergency services result in immediate response and fast on job site timing, ensuring to prevent your property from future damage. We are always here to help you in your time of need, no matter the disaster. Let SERVPRO make your disaster "Like it never even happened." [JB]

Professional SERVPRO of Champaign-Urbana Technicians Will Root Out Every Place Where Water Has Hidden on Your Property.

3/18/2019 (Permalink)

One of the hardest working appliances in your home is the refrigerator, so when it breaks or suffers a leak, there can be consequences. The water supply line to the ice maker can burst, causing floods that range from slow leaks to sudden breaks. Some are made of copper, and others are plastic. Some are initially connected under the house while others are linked to a wall. A lot of them have a quick connection which is quite prone to flooding. 
 
To prevent flood damage, non-plastic tubing like copper professionally installed with an unoriginal connection is recommended. Huge kitchen floods in your Garden District home can occur from broken ice maker lines in your refrigerator. 
 
SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana, a professional flood remediation company, can help you clean up the mess of flooding if your refrigerator water line has broken. You may have several inches of standing water in your home, which needs to be removed as fast as possible. We have the ability and experience to do so. 
 
Before we get there, shut off your water if it is safe, turning it off at the main if needed. Sometimes, there is a shutoff valve behind your refrigerator near the wall. You should also cut off the electricity to the affected rooms. 
 
Depending on how bad the flooding is, your kitchen may not be the only place affected. The water could have spread into your dining room, family room, living room, hallways, foyer, or any other room that is on the same level. 
 
Our first step is to get rid of this standing water. Once we accomplish this, any damaged flooring is taken up so we can dry the sub flooring. The drying process can then begin. We use fans and dehumidifiers, placed strategically around the affected areas to dry your home as quickly as possible. Centrifugal air movers can be set up to dry underneath your kitchen cabinets. We return to your home every twenty-four hours until your home is thoroughly dry. 
 
With SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana, you can be sure that you are treated respectfully and that your home is returned it its previous state before the flooding. Just give us a call anytime at (217) 355-0077.

(SB)

Your Family Home and Flood Damage in Champaign-Urbana

3/11/2019 (Permalink)

Thorough Flood Damage Cleanup

Most of the time, heavy rain showers and thunderstorms bring pleasant feelings. There are times, though, when flooding is a direct result of these as they pass through the Champaign-Urbana area. Rainfall must have somewhere to go, or downhill areas suffer greatly.

There is always new construction in Champaign-Urbana, and this sometimes leads to flood damage of nearby homes. When the terrain in a section of town changes, it can cause rainfall to collect in areas that cannot adequately handle the amount it receives. The water must go someplace, and as a result, it spreads out and enters homes.

Cleaning up after a flood is a very messy task. Working together as a team, SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana employees restore homes affected by flooding disasters. After removing the majority of the soil brought into your home by the water, slowly but steadily drying out your home is our next goal. As this happens, we remove damaged and non-salvageable items so we can concentrate better on cleaning and sanitizing the rest of your home and its contents.

It is important we thoroughly clean so that everything is sanitary and safe. Microbes can live in barely moist environments, so ensuring that your home is completely dry is also a crucial part of the restoration process. Our cleaning procedures can also include the use of antimicrobial agents to prevent secondary growth. If any of these microorganisms are present, removal of most during the cleaning process happens readily. This is more beneficial than waiting for larger problems to develop and then taking care of them later.

Your kitchen is where you prepare your family's meals and snacks, and having a low level of contaminants and pathogens is vital for keeping your family healthy. We can sanitize every surface in your kitchen to help ensure that no flood-borne diseases can make your family ill. We can also inventory your food items that must be disposed of for you to give to your insurance provider if you choose to file a claim.

Whenever you need us to make it “Like it never even happened.” call SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana at (217) 355-0077, regardless of the time of day, 365 days a year. We always answer our phone, so you can speak to someone who can help you right away.

(SB)

Content Restoration after Fire Damage

2/18/2019 (Permalink)

CONTENT RESTORATION

From furniture to antiques to artwork and appliances, we at SERVPRO Champaign/Urbana will treat your treasures with the care they deserve. While some items can be cleaned on-site, in many cases we'll need to inventory, pack out and transport the contents of your property to our state-of-the-art facility to ensure the best care possible.

Key Issues

  • Contents may need to be cleaned off-site
  • Contents inventory
  • Determine replacement and restoration
  • Pack
  • Ozone treatment
  • Cleaning
  • Odor removal
  • Secure
  • Return

Contents Inventory

  • We arrive on-site and inventory all of your personal belongings.
  • We carefully pack all salvageable items to transport to our secure warehouse and cleaning facility.
  • Unsalvageable contents are inventoried and discarded.

Contents Valuation

We have trained professionals to help you establish replacement values versus restoration costs. We are also available for pricing of non-salvageable inventory items.

Restoration

  • Thorough cleaning
  • Proper handling of all electronics
  • Photographs and artwork
  • Fabrics
  • Clothes
  • Memorabilia
  • Antiques
  • Soft goods
  • Dry Cleaning
  • Appliances
  • Surfaces
  • Odor Removal  (JB)

Should I or Should I not?

2/18/2019 (Permalink)

'Tis the season for colds and flus

Will you catch pneumonia if you go outside with a wet head in winter?? Ever wonder what are really health tips and what are old wives' tales? Well this article from WebMD answers those questions about some common practices we do to try and keep us germ free.

Use hand sanitizer: Worth it

“Hand sanitizers have gotten better in recent years,” explains Charles Gerba, PhD, a germ expert and environmental biologist at the University of Arizona. Look for one that contains 60% alcohol. That's the amount needed to kill germs. 

You don’t have to overdo it, Gerba says. Use it once or twice during a typical day, as well as after using public transportation, when you get home, or before you eat (if you can’t wash your hands).  

Wash your hands constantly: Not (necessarily) worth it 
Turn off the faucet with a paper towel: Worth it

“The faucet handle is the most contaminated surface in a restroom,” Gerba says. Using the same towel to open the restroom door on the way out is also a good idea. 

Skip the hand dryer: Worth it

These machines aren’t only annoyingly loud, but they could be hazardous to your health. Studies find that a jet air dryer spreads 1,300 times more germs than paper towels . Use paper towels if available, or air dry your hands.

Use a paper toilet seat cover: Not worth it

The porcelain throne is actually one of the cleanest spots of a public restroom because they’re often cleaned with disinfectants, Gerba says. 

If it gives you peace of mind, go for it, but that thin piece of paper isn’t going to do much good, since fluid can go right through it, says Philip Tierno, PhD, microbiologist and clinical professor of pathology at New York University. But chances are good you’re not going to come in contact with anything that can infect you, he says. 

Touch elevator buttons with your knuckle or sleeve: Worth it

The ground-floor button, which everyone touches, can get especially grimy, Gerba says. 

Avoid shaking hands or hugging people who appear ill: Worth it

Explain that you’re not being rude; you’re protecting your health. Both experts say they avoid touching friends and relatives who are sick, especially if they’re coughing and sneezing.

Keep your fingers off your face: Worth it

Touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with germy hands is a surefire way to get sick. And you may be doing it more than you realize. One study found the average adult touches their face about 16 times per hour.

Bring your own yoga mat to class: Worth it 

Doing downward dog can deliver plenty of health benefits, but your yoga mat can also be a prime place for germs, Tierno says. Make sure to clean it with antibacterial wipes after every use.

Wipe down gym equipment: Worth it

Working out can play a role in boosting your immune system, but exercise equipment is pretty dirty. One study found the virus that causes the common cold is present on 63% of gym machines. Protect yourself from germs as you work out by wiping gym equipment with a towel before using it. (Tierno suggests using your own towel and marking an X on the “dirty” side.) 

Wear a surgical mask on airplanes: Actually worth it!

It’s not overkill, Tierno says, especially if someone behind, beside, or in front of you is sneezing and coughing. Any further away, you’re probably safe.  (JB)

Water Leaks Can Cause Mold Damage

2/18/2019 (Permalink)

Call SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana to help you through the process of re-mediating mold.

Water Leaks Can Cause Mold 

A leaky faucet in your home can be very annoying, but it has the potential to be much more than an annoyance. The moisture caused by leaks can make your home into the perfect environment for spring mold growth. Mold spores may cause health effects and can grow rapidly if you fail to notice a leak shortly after it starts, especially in humid climates. Knowing the risks that mold presents and quickly fixing your water leaks can help to protect your home from mold growth. 


About Mold Growth

Mold growth will begin in areas of your home that are wet. The mold spores will land on moist surfaces and then start to germinate. The materials on which mold can grow include:
• Sheetrock
• Tile
• Painted surfaces
• Carpet
• Wood

Indications of Mold Growth Due to Water Leaks

If you see black and white spots in the area of the leak, this is a sign that you have mold. Kitchens and basements are some of the areas in your home where there is a high risk of mold growth as these areas are prone to leaks. It is therefore important that you properly maintain your plumbing fixtures.

Preventing Mold Growth after Fixing Leaks

If you discover a water leak, have it fixed as soon as possible to minimize the potential for mold growth. After the leak has been fixed, use a mild detergent to wash the area and then allow it to dry completely. After it has dried, thoroughly wipe the area with bleach to kill any spores present. Boric acid is also effective at killing mold spores and can be used as a substitute for bleach. Be sure to keep kids and pets out of the area while handling chemicals.

Get Professional Assistance

If there is a part of your home that is prone to water leaks, contact a plumber. If there are hidden problems that are causing leaks to recur, you may not be able to find them yourself. A licensed plumber who is experienced at finding and fixing leaks will be better able to find and fix the issues. Your plumber will also be able to advise you on how to maintain your plumbing to prevent water leaks and mold growth in the future.

Understanding Mold

Microscopic mold spores exist almost everywhere, outdoors and indoors, making it impossible to remove all molds from a home or business. 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.

Call SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana today to schedule a mold estimate. You can reach us 24/7 at (217) 355-0077. (LB)

Are You Ready For Severe Weather?

2/15/2019 (Permalink)

Severe weather is unpredictable and SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana wants you to be safe no matter the season! Below are some severe weather readiness tips to help guide you, no matter what type of disaster you may encounter.

Weather Radios: Weather radios are the most reliable way to receive notifications of severe weather in your area. Although cellular phones, weather apps, social media as well as wireless emergency alerts (WEA’s) are what the majority of us depend on to keep informed, the truth is those devices can have their limitation during severe weather and can be interrupted. Mobile devices rely on towers and those towers can be damaged and cease to function during sever weather. A weather radio, WITH CHARGED BATTERIES is the most reliable way to be informed of severe weather. Be sure to properly program your weather radio so you only receive the alerts you want for the counties you want.

Emergency Supply Kit: Having an emergency kit can be a life saver. Most emergency management agencies recommend supplies for up to three days. The following is a list you can use as a guideline:

  • Water (1 gallon per person per day)
  • Food (non-perishable)
  • Manual can opener
  • Battery operated radio, preferably a weather radio
  • Flashlight
  • Extra batteries for radio and flashlight
  • First Aid kit
  • Whistle to signal help
  • Clothing, blankets
  • Dust mask or bandannas
  • Plastic sheeting, garbage bags, and duct tape
  • Wrench or other tools to shit off utilities
  • Hygiene items
  • Important documents. (Copy of insurance policy, bank account info, identification, etc.)
  • Fire extinguisher
  • Matches in waterproof case
  • Cash

 Make family plan: Make sure all members in the household are aware where they are to go in the event of severe weather. If for some reason the family is separated in the event of a severe storm, have a meeting place established as to aid in finding each other amidst devastation.

Not All Water Damage Is Treated The Same!

2/11/2019 (Permalink)

To most homeowners Champaign/Urbana water damage is all the same. It is a nightmare situation that disrupts daily routines and makes life rather difficult. It is destructive, cruel, and costly to put right.  Whether the flooding is from a burst pipe or a blocked drain, it’s all the same right?

Well, in reality, there are some crucial differences to be made.

The information below explains the main types of water damage and could help you identify the problem quickly if it ever happens to you.

Category One: Clear Water 

This water is the cleanest, most non-toxic form of water damage. It is potable water, perhaps directly from the tap. It is unlikely to cause you any harm, even if you are exposed for some time. Nevertheless, even clean flooding can lead to electrical and structural faults, so it is safer you to call in the experts for repairs. Clean water comes from things like a broken water supply line, tub or sink overflow with no contaminants, appliance malfunctions involving water-supply lines to name a few. However, once clean water leaves the exit point, it might not remain clean after contacting other surfaces or materials.    Although it is considered the "safest" of the categories, it can degrade to category 2 or 3 if left untreated.

Category Two: Gray Water 

Gray water damage is a little bit more serious and requires a speedier removal process. This is because it may contain potentially unsafe levels of chemicals, microorganisms, or dirt. Examples of Cat 2 water include, but are not limited to: overflow from dishwashers or washing machines; overflows from toilet bowls with urine; seepage due to hydrostatic pressure and broken aquariums.   

If left untreated, it can quickly degrade into category 3.

Category Three: Black Water

Cat 3 water is grossly contaminated and can contain pathogenic, toxigenic or other harmful agents.  Cat 3 water can include, but are not limited to:  sewage; toilet back flows from beyond the trap; flooding from seawater, rivers or streams, ground surface water or other contaminated water entering the indoor environment.  

It is important to use experts like those at SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana who are very skilled in the safe handling of black water and will use breathing filtration apparatus and protective clothing to eliminate the risk of sickness. They will also contain the affected area so that no dangerous materials are allowed to escape during the restoration process.

Knowing what type of water is damaging your property or where it is coming from helps restoration experts to approach the situation in a safe way.

Please contact your local experts at SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana anytime at (217) 355-0077.

Preventing Mold Growth

2/11/2019 (Permalink)

Keep the humidity between 30 to 60 percent. 

Provide for proper drainage away from building foundations.

Regularly inspect plumbing and appliances for leaks.

Keep gutters and drains clear of debris.

Respond to all water intrusions immediately.

Inspect the roof, windows and other areas where water might enter the building and perform necessary maintenance.

Contact SERVPRO® of Champaign/Urbana for assistance after a water damage or if you discover mold. (JB)

Preparedness for Pets

2/11/2019 (Permalink)

After Hurricane Katrina several years ago it was estimated that over 15,500 animals were ultimately rescued. Of the 15,500, only 15-20% were reunited with their owners.

As pets are just as important as any family member to most people, it is important to make them part of your preparedness planning. Several things that you can do to make sure they stay safe during an emergency are:

Build a Pet Emergency Kit

  • Food - At least a three day supply in an airtight, waterproof container.
  • Water - At least a three day supply.
  • Medicines and medical records.
  • Important documents - such as registration, adoption and vaccination papers.
  • First Aid Kit.
  • Collar or harness with ID tag, rabies, tag and leash.
  • Crate or pet carrier - Have a sturdy, safe crate or carrier in case you need to evacuate. There should be enough space for the pet to stand, lie down or turn around in.
  • Sanitation - Pet litter and litter box, newspapers, paper towels, plastic trash bags, and antibacterial wipes.
  • Picture of you and your pet together - If you become separated, the photo will help as documentation of ownership and help others to assist you.
  • Familiar items - Not only is this a traumatic time for you, but also for your pet. By having some items such as treats, toys, and bedding close by, you can help alleviate stress on your pet.

Most important of all is to include your pet in your evacuation plans and don't leave them behind where they can be lost or injured. It is very important to have your pet micro-chipped. In the event that you do get separated from your pet, it will be much easier for the animal to be traced back to it's owner.

For more information visit ready.gov/animals and remember that SERVPRO of Champaign-Urbana, 217-355-0077 knows that not only are your personal items important to you but so are your family pets. Keep them safe and be prepared!  (JB)

Why Hiring A Professional Restoration Company To Cleanup Your Home In Champaign/Urbana Is The Best Choice After A Fire.

2/8/2019 (Permalink)

The Principle of Cleaning After A Fire Damage In Champaign/Urbana

Surviving the aftermath of the fire damage can be quite a relief. However, the replacement and repairs can be very detrimental. Luckily, there are some insurance companies out there who would help with the costs. However, dealing with the aftermath does require some skills and expertise. The cleaning process isn't an easy task. Keep in mind that it requires extensive inspection, identifying types of residues and services, removing the residues, and disposal. All of this should be taken care of by a fire restoration specialist. After all, doing this on your own can be very dangerous, exhausting, time-consuming, and expensive.

Fire damage in Champaign/Urbana does not have to be a pain because the SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana tech can take care of everything. They can start by inspecting the areas near the source of the fire and see how far the damage has moved through various structures. There are different types of smoke residues, and the SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana specialist can select a cleaning method that can effectively remove these residues. Another thing to note is that the type of surface that has undergone the fire damage may require specialized cleaning method and products that are safe to use on the surface. The fire restoration experts may have to be cautious to preserve the materials or surface during the cleaning process.

Since smoke residues can bind to the surface that they come in contact with, the fire experts can use a dry and wet screening process to release these particles away from the affected surface. The restorer can effectively get rid of the debris and cleaning waste. Once everything is completed, the technicians can walk you through your home to make sure that you are satisfied with the results.

If you are interested in getting a specialist to clean and restore your home after fire damage,  give SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana a call at (217) 355-0077, and we can promptly send our experts to your home anytime.

Smoke and Soot Cleanup

2/7/2019 (Permalink)

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 Champaign/Urbana 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 SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana anytime at (217) 355-0077

What To Expect During The Restoration Process After A Water Damage To Your Champaign/Urbana Restaurant

2/4/2019 (Permalink)

Water Damage To Your Restaurant

Water damage is perhaps one of the worst things that can happen to your restaurant. Not only can the pooled water cause structural and aesthetic damage to your establishment, but the restoration can also take time.

Thankfully, here at SERVPRO, we have a team of experts that have years of experience in handling any size water damage disaster to your Champaign/Urbana restaurant. SERVPRO springs into action as soon as we hear from you and work hard to minimize the damage and keep your doors open. Here is what happens during the initial few hours after we hear from you.

One Hour  
During the first hour of our SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana professionals receiving your call, we assemble a team of experts and send them your way.

Four Hours 
Our SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana experts reach the site of water damage within four hours of receiving a call from you. We understand that the best chance for a successful restoration is a quick action. Once our technicians are on-site, they walk you through the restoration process step-by-step. They make sure that you understand what to expect after a restoration process. Within the first four hours, our technicians also pretest the restorability of the damage.

Eight Hours 
Within eight hours of our team reaching the site of water damage, the technicians prepare a verbal briefing and communicate it to the concerned person. Once the plan has been agreed upon, our teams start the actual restoration and cleaning process. We use some of the best equipment available to restore and clean the water damage. Our technicians work hard to remove any standing water, clean the carpets and deodorize your establishment. We understand that cleanliness and hygiene is a critical part of restaurant management, and our professionals work hard at ensuring it.

Final Walk-Through 
Your satisfaction is one of our highest priorities. Once the job is done, our SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana technicians arrange for a final walk-through to make sure that you are satisfied with the restoration job. After we are done, your restaurant is ready for any inspection from health or related departments.

Call SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana at (217) 355-0077 today to schedule an appointment

Winter Storm Events

2/4/2019 (Permalink)

Winter Weather 101

A winter storm is an event in which the main types of precipitation are snow, sleet or freezing rain.

Why can winter storms be so dangerous?

Most deaths from winter storms are not directly related to the storm itself.

  • People die in traffic accidents on icy roads.
  • People die of heart attacks while shoveling snow.
  • People die of hypothermia from prolonged exposure to cold.

Everyone is potentially at risk during winter storms. The actual threat to you depends on your specific situation. Recent observations show that:

  • Of injuries related to ice and snow:
    • About 70% occur in automobiles.
    • About 25% are people caught out in the storm.
    • Majority are males over 40 years old.
  • Of injuries related to exposure to cold:
    • 50% are people over 60 years old.
    • Over 75% are males.
    • About 20% occur in the home.
https://www.nssl.noaa.gov/education/svrwx101/winter/

We are having some severe weather here in Central Illinois this winter. Make sure you take all the precautions to keep your home or business prepared for the cold days and nights. Call us if you need us!   217-355-0077.  (JB)

Winter Heater Reminders

2/4/2019 (Permalink)

We all need heat when temperatures plunge!  However, special care must be exercised when using space heaters.

Space heaters that require fuel should be handled and used with extreme caution. While fuel-powered space heaters are more efficient at heating a large space, there are certain things you must do to protect yourself from a potential fire. 

Never leave space heaters running without supervision. It's understandable that you do not want to come home to a cold house, but leaving a space heater running unattended is extremely dangerous. Space heaters may overheat which increase the possibility of igniting the fuel and causing a fire.

Here are some helpful tips to keep your home safe:

1: Always make sure the space heater is turned off before refueling

2: Remove the space heater from the residence before refueling. Never refuel inside the house!

3: Allow the space heater adequate time to cool down. Refueling a space heater while it is still hot can cause an explosion. If you spill gas onto one of the hot parts of the space heater, it could easily ignite.

4: Make sure to check if the space heater you are using is approved for indoor use. Most fuel powered space heaters are designed for outdoor use only!

5: Always be sure to double check your home fire extinguishers to insure that they are charged and that the expiration date has not passed.

6: Do not place space heaters on carpets or other flammable fabrics. Make sure the space heater is not in a confined space where it may overheat

7: Electric space heaters should never be plugged to power in a damp room. Humid air can caused the space heater to short, leading to an electrical fire.

8: Always make sure that electric space heaters are directly plugged into an outlet. Extension cords increase the risk of shorting.

9: Before purchasing any space heater, make sure that the space heater has passed safety tests in the United States. The easiest way to tell is to check for an Underwriters Laboratory Label (UL).

SERVPRO of Champaign-Urbana stands ready to remediate any incidence of damaging fire.  However, we offer these few watchwords to minimize the prospect of a building fire when using space heaters of any type. (JB)

Document Restoration

2/4/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO Champaign-Urbana knows timely mitigation is the key to reducing severity and recovery of damaged items especially when it comes to paper goods. Water or smoke damaged paper can deteriorate rapidly.  Without proper handling, valuable files and irreplaceable documents could be lost forever.

Let SERVPRO'S Document Restoration Team help you recover your damaged paper goods before it's too late. Our technicians are trained to use the same advanced technology available as the Library of Congress uses to dry water damaged books.

Vacuum freeze drying is the most efficient and effective way to salvage water damaged documents. This process can recover even the most delicate items, from documents to photographs and x-rays to entire business archives. Your documents will be protected with the utmost care and privacy to keep your documents safe.

For further information, please call SERVPRO of Champaign-Urbana217-355-0077. (JB)

Dealing with Smoke Damage Problems

2/1/2019 (Permalink)

Smoke damage leaves your property with black marks which can be unpleasing to look at. It destroys the appearance and structure of everything in it. This includes walls, ceiling, furniture and any other item in the affected room. It also leaves the building with an unpleasant odor that is hard to eliminate unless you turn to professionals like us for assistance. We are here to assist any smoke damage victims in the Champaign/Urbana area by offering friendly yet professional services to deal with the disturbing issue and restore your home or business property to its previous state.

We use our experience and high-tech equipment to make sure that we clean and deodorize the building making it a comfortable place to live in. Smoke, due to its nature, can easily seep through the smallest cracks. It is, therefore, hard for you to notice it and this could lead to substantial damages when the issue gets out of hand.

Our team is qualified and has knowledge about how smoke works. This makes us the best option for you. We offer complete cleanup and odor removal in Champaign/Urbana. We do this by following simple yet effective steps as follows;

Removing soot from the household

This is the residue left behind after the smoke damage. It is the action taken after assessing the level of the damage and marking the affected areas.

Determining and getting rid of the source of odor

The smoke smell remains in carpets, upholstered furniture and clothing unless it is eliminated before the cleaning process. We use high-quality additives and chemicals to help break the molecules and get rid of the smell.

Cleaning the room

After deodorizing, it is time to eliminate the smoke spots by doing a thorough cleaning of the walls, carpets and the washable clothes ensuring that they are all left immaculately clean.

If you are having a smoke damage issue in the Champaign/Urbana area, we are the right solution for you as;

  • We are experienced
  • Have the right equipment
  • Certified to do the job
  • We offer emergency restoration services

Do not think twice about trusting us to do the job for you and you will not regret your decision.

For any fire smoke damage issues, call SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana. 

217-355-0077 (JB)

Overflowing Storm Drains Can Cause Flood Damage To Homes.

1/31/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana Can Remediate Flooding After Storms or Snow Melts

Rainfall and melted snow provide our lawns with the water they need to grow well, but not all of the water that falls on your property ends up soaking into the ground of your Champaign/Urbana property. Much of it runs off into the street where it travels down to the drainage system.

When a neighborhood contains many trees or other debris sources, homes in the area can become flood damaged. When these drains become clogged, they force the water to either continue down the street or to overflow into yards and parking lots. This can happen in any neighborhood.

We at SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana make sure that each one of our customers receives the level of service their own unique needs require. We understand that floods do more than just damage the interior of the home. Flooding also affects the exterior of the home, as well as the yard. No matter where flooding damages your property, or how severe that damage becomes, we handle all aspects of restoration and quickly make it “Like it never even happened.”


SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana is always ready to help local families recover from flood damage and other catastrophes that affect their residences. Call us at (217) 355-0077 anytime so we can help your family move forward after a flooding event.

Dangers of Extreme Cold

1/30/2019 (Permalink)

According to the National Weather Service, $2.84 million dollars of property damage was caused by extreme cold in 2015.

Even scarier?  Fifty-three people died and three were injured due to extreme cold the same year.

It is important to be aware of the effect temperatures can have on you.  The two primary conditions to be aware of are frostbite and hypothermia.

Frostbite is caused when your skin is exposed to extremely cold temperatures.  Physical symptoms are white or grayish-yellow skin, skin that feels unusually firm, or waxy numbness.

Hypothermia is when your body temperature falls to an abnormally low temperature caused from long exposure to cold weather. Signs of hypothermia include shivering, exhaustion, confusion, fumbling hands, memory loss,slurred speech, and drowsiness.  If someone’s body temperature is below 95 degrees Fahrenheit seek medical attention immediately. 

To avoid these conditions, stay indoors if possible.  If not, dress warmly in layers and try to keep dry.  (JB)

Construction Services

1/30/2019 (Permalink)

Rebuilding after a disaster.

After a disaster damages your home - whether it be a fire, water, or storm - you will need to rebuild and restore. For decades SERVPRO has been known for their ability to respond to a disaster and restore your home to make it "Like it never even happened.”

The first thing you must do after a disaster is take temporary protective measures such as placing roof tarps to prevent additional damage, boarding up to secure the building, and then remove water and debris. Mold, smoke, fire, and water damage all have their own protocol for restoration and our experts know how to tackle each problem.

Once your home or building is secured and the hazards are removed, you can start the rebuilding process; from the structure itself to preserving and restoring the treasured items inside your home - including heirlooms, art, and family photos. The professionals at SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana can simplify the restoration process by handling both the initial damage mitigation and rebuilding the affected areas. Having one qualified company for the entire process can save time and keeps costs low.

SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana can provide this continuity by supervising a full range of restoration services that will bring a building back to full functionality.

  • Board Up
  • Carpet Repair and Installation
  • Document Drying
  • Dry Cleaning
  • Drywall Installation
  • Drywall Removal
  • Electrical
  • Electronics Restoration
  • Fine Art Restoration
  • Furniture Restoration
  • General Contracting
  • Hardwood Floor Repair
  • HVAC Services
  • Move Out
  • Painting
  • Plumbing
  • Roofing Services
  • Tree Removal
  • And more!

If you are in need of construction services contact SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana,              217-355-0077.  (JB)

Hoarding: A Serious Situation

1/25/2019 (Permalink)

According to The Mayo Clinic, “A hoarding disorder is a persistent difficulty in discarding or parting with possessions because of a perceived need to save them. A person with a hoarding disorder experiences stress at the thought of reducing inventory. Excessive accumulation takes place regardless of actual value.”

Many people with a hoarding disorder do not find their habits to be a problem. Hoarded items are captured which others would throw away, viewing them as junk or garbage such as old newspapers, second-class mail, or packaging. Hoarding can lead to a living space filled with extreme clutter from years of accumulation, making living conditions unsanitary and crowded. Bugs, fleas, rats and other vermin may be present to such an extent that an exterminator may need to be called. At times, hoarding may spread outside the home as well, filling a storage facility, garage, or even yard. SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana encounters hoarding situations in several types of instances. It is not a rare for a fire or water loss to reveal a hoarding problem.

SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana will communicate with the insurance company regarding a property owner’s contents coverage, which, after approval, may be packed for prospective cleaning or drying, and stored by SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana to expedite work on the actual fire or water loss at the building structure itself.  SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana may also encounter a hoarding job through a call from a landlord, caseworker, real estate agent, or family member upon the death of a loved one. In these situations, the crew will learn if they should look for any items of importance in the course of their cleaning. Sometimes family members will personally assist in helping the hoarding relative sort contents as well.

Each case is different and hoarding jobs are often sensitive situations, but SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana is committed to helping make it “Like it never even happened.” If you encounter a hoarding situation at one of your properties or with your insureds, call SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana for a careful, but thorough response.  (JB)

Air Quality

1/18/2019 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO Air Quality JB

Here are some things to consider from the American Lung Association about air quality in your home:

  • Is anyone smoking indoors? No one should smoke indoors.
  • Can you see or smell mold or mildew? 
  • Is the humidity regularly above 50 percent?
  • Are there leaks or standing water anywhere—kitchen, basement, attic?
  • Are all fuel-burning appliances (gas stoves, water heaters, fireplaces) fully vented to the outdoors?
  • Is there an attached garage or basement where cars, lawnmowers or motorcycles are stored?
  • Are household chemicals, paints or solvents stored indoors or in an attached garage or basement?
  • Have you recently remodeled or added new furniture, carpeting or painted?
  • Do you use odor-masking chemicals or "air-freshening" devices?
  • Has kitchen or food garbage been covered and removed?
  • Have you used pesticides recently?

If you have an ongoing air quality issue, call SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana for further consultation. We have a staff of professionals, certified in all aspects of deodorization and microbial remediation.

Seasonal Storms Hitting Illinois

1/17/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO is Ready to Help with ANY Kind of Storm Damage

Illinois has a widely diverse and often unforgiving climate, making it on the receiving end of damage from a wide range of dangerous storms and natural disasters. Tornadoes can cause huge damages to entire towns, massive hailstones have been known to destroy cars and smash through roofing, and storms in both the summer and winter have the potential for serious flooding and water damage. Storm damage here varies widely in appearance and specifics, but SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana is prepared year-round for all types of natural disasters common in the season. 

 
Tornadoes 
 
Call them tornadoes, twisters, or whatever you like, but these violent natural disasters cause some of the most severe storm damage we see in Illinois. Tornadoes can completely demolish a home, sometimes making rebuilding and replacing the only sustainable option for unfortunate homeowners. However, more commonly, a home may be affected to a mild or moderate degree and only require matching restorations to specific areas of concern. If you are unsure of how long or how much money a tornado restoration could take, be sure to call us for a quote. 
 
Snow and Ice Storms 
 
Snow can still cause significant damage in the coldest months of the year. Snow can seep into foundations, pile up and freeze in the yard, or cause ice dams that directly lead to water damage problems. When regular shoveling fails, SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana is ready to help with any damages taken by your home. 
 
Heavy Rain Storms 
 
In some cases, ordinary rainstorms can be heavy enough to cause flooding or other severe damage to local homes, especially in the late spring and summer. A storm may even, bring a massive amount of moisture and destruction. In the event of flooding, make sure your valuables are secured and elevated and try to stay in a safe place or on the upper floors of your home. SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana has helped hundreds in the local area to recover from water, storm, fire, and other types of damage to their homes. For our assistance, just call us 24/7 at (217) 355-0077.

How To Recover From Water Damage To Your Champaign/Urbana Property After A Fire

1/14/2019 (Permalink)

Water Removal After Fire Suppression In Your Champaign/Urbana Home

Disasters occurring in your Champaign/Urbana home often do not exclusively fall into one category of damage or another. Recovering from an instance like a fire in your house requires specialists in the effects of the fire, but might also require those with certifications to contend with water damages and drying efforts as well.

While the fire damage to your Champaign/Urbana home might be more than enough to get overwhelmed as a homeowner when you multiple that with the need for water removal services, you need trusted technicians that can arrive quickly like our SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana team. Our rapid response unit is available 24/7 to begin mitigation practices and early stages of restoration work to keep the situation from getting worse.

When it comes to contending with water damages that require extraction, time is of the essence. Our SERVPRO technicians have the tools and equipment to rapidly pull high volumes of water from the affected areas, including two truck-mounted pumps in our Green Fleet. Extraction is not the only point of concern about the need for water removal, as this damage can spread and saturate quickly through materials in the affected region of the property.

Over saturation is a common occurrence in these situations, causing construction materials and surfaces to inflate and alter as the abundance of water warps their composition. If managed at the appropriate times, our professionals can work with air movers and dehumidifiers to pull the moisture from the area entirely, pulling the relative humidity in your home back to acceptable parameters to avoid effects like mold growth.

While a fire in your home might lead to severe effects spread throughout your property, sometimes the methods used to extinguish these fires can also cause effects on their own. Our SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana fire restoration technicians has the equipment and training to handle any facet of fire damage that affects your home, and the commitment to fast service that makes the restoration process as efficient as possible. Give us a call anytime at (217) 355-0077.

Don't Let Ice Dams Get You Down This Winter Call Us If Your Champaign/Urbana Home Experiences Water Damage!

1/11/2019 (Permalink)

Ice Damming Can Allow Water Damage to Champaign/Urbana Homes

The winter is upon the area, and Champaign/Urbana homeowners prepare for another season with significant snowfall. While many properties are virtually unaffected by the predicted snow to come, other homes are less fortunate regarding the damage that heavy snow staying on the roof of their house can do. Ice damming is among the most significant of the potential hazards that threaten the structural integrity of your roof, and this phenomenon is more common than you might think. 

While the smaller side of the concerns for ice damming on your roof is the weakening of the structure, water damage restoration in Champaign/Urbana maybe required when runoff and melting snow cannot find a means to leave the roof area. Ice damming occurs when melting snow beneath a fresh snowpack reaches the eaves of the roof and freezes at this point. To make matters worse, the condition continues to worsen without physically breaking them loose or having several warmer days to melt the ice. 

Our SERVPRO professionals have helped many of our customers that have dealt with ice damming and the water damages that can result from the incident. As melting snow and runoff have no means of escape from the area, and the weight of the snowpack providing immense pressure on the roof itself, liabilities become exposed and exploited by the present water. 

With efficient equipment designed to reduce overall humidity fast like our industrial-strength dehumidification machines, we can effectively bring moisture levels down to acceptable parameters in the attic space to prevent the growth of mold and fungus. With a licensed contracting division, our SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana franchise can assist immediately with emergency board up services and include our professional reconstruction services as part of our comprehensive restoration package that saves our customers time and money.  

Ice damming can happen to any home, even on some that have preventative measures in place to avoid it. If your home suffers water damage, let our experts help you to restore the damaged areas fast. You can reach our SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana emergency response team 24/7 by calling (217) 355-0077.

Have You Established An Emergency Ready Profile (ERP)?

1/9/2019 (Permalink)

The ERP is a comprehensive document containing critical information about your business, including: Emergency Contact Information, Shut-off Valve Locations and Priority Areas.  In the event of an emergency, the SERVPRO Emergency Ready Profile can help minimize business interruption by having an immediate plan of action in place for your facility.  

Knowing what to do and who to call in advance and having a plan in place may help minimize the amount of time your business is inactive and gets you back in the building following a disaster. The ERP is also accessible online using your computer or tablet. Simply download SERVPRO's free Ready Plan app to access this information anytime. The SERVPRO Emergency READY Profile (ERP) will help ensure you and your businesses are "Ready for whatever happens."

The ERP is a no cost assessment; all it requires is a little time, making it a great value that could save your business in the future.  Call SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana at (217) 355-0077 to start your Emergency Ready Profile.

Mold Damage Is Not Enough To Bring Down Your Champaign/Urbana Based Business!

1/4/2019 (Permalink)

Trained SERVPRO Professionals Quickly Remediate a Mold Infestation at Your Place of Business

Prolonged exposure to mold damage may lead to health effects, and that is not good for your employees as a business owner. There are specific guidelines that you need to follow during such incidents for successful remediation so that your Champaign/Urbana business is back to its magnificent days. The timing of the restoration process is so vital to stand a better chance of rescuing most of your items. 
 
The primary cause of commercial mold in Champaign/Urbana is the presence of oxygen and moisture. If you fail to address the accumulation of moisture in your building, there are chances of seeing mold growing on carpets, papers, insulation, and wood. Controlling moisture levels on your property is the key to preventing this form of damage, and that is what our SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana team helps you to achieve. We achieve that through dehumidification and setting up space heaters. 
 
Planning the remediation before the work starts is the first thing that our SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana team does when working for you. During the planning stage, we assess the extent of the damage and look at the various areas and materials with the mold infestation. Our highest priority is to work towards protecting the safety and health of the occupants. 
 
If we notice that the HVAC system has some contamination, we discourage its use to prevent spreading the spores. We then clean it with antimicrobial detergents to avoid possible mold growth. In some cases, it might be hard to locate the mold when it grows on hidden surfaces. Such places include the underside of the pads and carpets, the back side of wallpaper, drywall or behind furniture. Our SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana technicians are careful when dealing with such situations since removing that wallpaper or carpet might lead to the spread of spores to clean areas. 
 
At SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana, We're Faster To Any Size Disaster! Call us at (217) 355-0077 anytime.

10 Tips To Make Your Home Safer From Fires

12/24/2018 (Permalink)

It’s an unfortunate tragedy. Your home in Champaign/Urbana has been ravaged by a raging fire. A restoration company has come to the rescue to return your home back to its prior condition. Hopefully you will never experience such loss again, but it is wise to prepare your home in the event of future disasters. Even if your home has never been devastated by a fire, the following fire preparation tips can prove beneficial in giving you greater peace of mind regarding fire safety in your home.

1. Smoke alarms: Test smoke alarms monthly and replace batteries annually.


2. Prepare children: Teach fire preparation to children, including the dangers of fire. Make sure they know the proper use of 911 for emergencies. Keep matches and lighters out of their reach.


3. Plan where to go: Create an escape plan and make sure everyone in the household is aware of it. Choose an outside meeting spot for all family members to gather upon escaping. Conduct practice drills at least twice a year.


4. Share contact information: Make sure all household members know who to contact in the event that they cannot find each other during a home fire.


5. Educate on proper techniques: Teach everyone in the household to stop, drop and roll in the event their clothes catch on fire.


6. Take action if you smoke: Smokers should take extra precautions, as many residential fire deaths are caused by smoking materials. Avoid smoking in bed, especially while sleepy or medicated. It is better to smoke outside.


7. Handle heaters: Portable heaters should be turned off when not in use.


8. Take care of candles: Candles should be extinguished when not in use, and never left unattended.


9. Store other sources of light: Speaking of candles, consider using flashlights during a power outage instead of candles.


10. Examine the home for other fire hazards: Check the electrical wiring and home heating sources to make sure they are safe.

A home fire is a most unwelcome event, but by taking fire preparation seriously, you and your household can hopefully avoid this happening or, at the very least, be better equipped to handle such an emergency when it occurs, Feel free to call SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana anytime at (217) 355-0077.

Mold Remediation vs Mold Removal

12/21/2018 (Permalink)

Many people believe that mold remediation and mold removal mean the same thing however, they are different. Mold remediation is the removal and treatment of the mold, so mold does not regrow in the area. Mold removal is just the removal of mold. Mold growth can start in as little as 48 hours once water gets into your property. Mold spores flourish wherever there is moisture. These spores can rapidly grow into colonies when exposed to water. Sources of moisture or water must therefore be addressed before mold remediation can start, or else the mold may return. Mold remediation is something that SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana are specialists in. When SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana goes out to a mold job, we want to make sure that the entire mold is removed and treated properly so it doesn't come back. If you think that you have a mold problem call SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana at (217) 355-0077 at any time.

Community Involvement at its Best!

12/19/2018 (Permalink)

T’was the week before Christmas and all through SERVPRO, the decorations were hung with the SERVPRO sleigh loaded with gifts. All that was needed was firemen Phil, Urbana Fire Department (UFD) version of Saint Nick.

We here at SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana love being involved in the community, whether it’s a Parade during the Holiday seasons or partnering with local programs. Each year our local Walmart and Meijer donate approximately 10 gifts cards to the UFD. With this donation the UFD contacts all Urbana schools and requests their recommendation of two to three families in need of a little help financially with Christmas gifts such as toys, clothes, shoes, and more.

What does the evening look like?

Families show up at SERVPRO around 5:30 pm. They start the evening with pizza, juice boxes, and water. The parents then head for their local Walmart or Meijer according to the gift card they were given. They will then meet with a Fire Fighter and Store associate who will walk around the store with the Parents. The Fire personnel and store employee help with the calculation on the purchases to stay within the designated amount, along with making sure the gifts are for the kids and purchases don’t include big ticket items like electronics.

Crafts, a bounce house, and so much more go into making this an enjoyable experience for the kids. Stations are set up throughout the warehouse for groups of 5 to move to during the night. Our staff of employees volunteer their time to help these kids have a great night. Some are at each station to give directions on what the kids will be able to do and oversee their area, while others are the group leaders and assists the children on their crafts , games, and getting them from one station to the next. We also have employees distributing the foods and drinks, along with treats and prizes for the homemade gift bags for each kid to take home. And don’t forget the Elves! Wondering around all night are our SERVPRO elves keeping an eye on the kids to report back to Santa.

SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana Thanks the Urbana Fire Department and the families involved for allowing us to be a part of this annual event. If you would like to know how to donate or volunteer with us next year, Contact our office at (217) 355-0077 or the UFD Fire Marshal Phil Edwards at (217) 384-2445. MERRY CHRISTMAS from your friends at SERVPRO!

Cleaning an Artificial Christmas Tree

12/17/2018 (Permalink)

As the holiday season rolls around, it's likely that you'll be pulling your artificial Christmas tree out of storage. About 70 percent of Americans will celebrate Christmas this year, and of those who celebrate the holiday, only about 20 percent of trees are real! Many people recognize the benefits that come with artificial Christmas trees; reliability, easiness, and attractive looks.

After eleven months in storage, however, many artificial Christmas trees both look and smell a little dusty. No matter how well you try to keep the dust out, it always finds a way in.

Dust

One of the foremost necessities in cleaning an artificial Christmas tree is to remove any dust clinging to its branches and needles. Using a static cling cloth, gently wipe it along the branches. The static will pick up loose dust and stop your tree looking drab.

Shake with Salt

If your tree needs something a bit more intensive, salt can actually help! This is a method that is effective for small trees or larger trees that come apart into smaller pieces. Add small trees or tree pieces to a large bag with a handful or two of kosher salt, and then vigorously shake. The salt will act as an abrasive cleaner, scrubbing away any grime that's clinging on tightly.

A Seasonal Sponge Bath

For heavy cleaning, a light dusting won't be enough. At the start of every season, carefully wipe each branch down with a gentle, wet sponge. This will pick up the dust and dirt that settled between the needles while the tree was in storage. Sponging a tree, especially a larger one, can be time-consuming, so plan to tackle this at short intervals or enlist the help of others.

Deodorization

After your tree is clean, you'll still need to deodorize it periodically. You can hide a scented air freshener intended for a car in the branches of your tree to give it a seasonal scent, or periodically spritz the branches with an air freshener to keep them smelling fresh.

Professional Services

Sometimes, home cleaning just doesn't cut it. For more extensive cleaning services around your home, SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana is locally owned and operated, and has expert solutions to keep every part of your house clean. Call us today for a free estimate (217) 355-0077

What To Expect During The Restoration Process After A Water Damage To Your Champaign/Urbana Restaurant

12/13/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage To Your Restaurant

Water damage is perhaps one of the worst things that can happen to your restaurant. Not only can the pooled water cause structural and aesthetic damage to your establishment, but the restoration can also take time.

Thankfully, here at SERVPRO, we have a team of experts that have years of experience in handling any size water damage disaster to your Champaign/Urbana restaurant. SERVPRO springs into action as soon as we hear from you and work hard to minimize the damage and keep your doors open. Here is what happens during the initial few hours after we hear from you.

One Hour  
During the first hour of our SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana professionals receiving your call, we assemble a team of experts and send them your way.

Four Hours 
Our SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana experts reach the site of water damage within four hours of receiving a call from you. We understand that the best chance for a successful restoration is a quick action. Once our technicians are on-site, they walk you through the restoration process step-by-step. They make sure that you understand what to expect after a restoration process. Within the first four hours, our technicians also pretest the restorability of the damage.

Eight Hours 
Within eight hours of our team reaching the site of water damage, the technicians prepare a verbal briefing and communicate it to the concerned person. Once the plan has been agreed upon, our teams start the actual restoration and cleaning process. We use some of the best equipment available to restore and clean the water damage. Our technicians work hard to remove any standing water, clean the carpets and deodorize your establishment. We understand that cleanliness and hygiene is a critical part of restaurant management, and our professionals work hard at ensuring it.

Final Walk-Through 
Your satisfaction is one of our highest priorities. Once the job is done, our SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana technicians arrange for a final walk-through to make sure that you are satisfied with the restoration job. After we are done, your restaurant is ready for any inspection from health or related departments.

Call SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana at (217) 355-0077 today to schedule an appointment.

How SERVPRO Remediates Water Damage in Your Champaign/Urbana Residence

12/10/2018 (Permalink)

Uh Oh...Time to call SERVPRO before more damage occurs.

How we Help You Deal with Water Damage in Champaign/Urbana

Water is part of everyday life, so spills can also happen at any time. Although most incidents are easily manageable, some are too widespread to handle on your own. The damage they cause to property requires a systemic restoration process that only a certified WRT, water restoration technician, can manage. If there is a spillage incident in your Champaign/Urbana property, the steps you take once you discover the issue, play a role in determining the outcome. IICRC, the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification, certifies us, making us the right partner when your property is damaged. 

In all cases of water damage in Champaign/Urbana, taking immediate action helps a great deal. Issues like mold infestation and bad odor that happen within 24-48 hours after the spillage, can be prevented by extracting the water from affected areas or taking other preventive actions. At SERVPRO, we have highly trained crews on standby 24 hours a day. Our trucks have all the necessary supplies including water extractors with different capacities to remove standing water within the first few hours. By using desiccant or refrigerant dehumidifiers, our crews can also dry all excess moisture from your structure before mold develops. 

After a water spillage incident, there is the damage that you can see, and what you might not detect. From casual observation, you can tell that there is standing water on a wooden floor. However, you might not tell how deep the moisture penetrates the wood. By using advanced moisture detection tools such as moisture sensors, our SERVPRO technicians probe the affected material to establish the extent to which the moisture spreads. Moisture meters also help us establish the effectiveness of drying efforts. 

When the spill involves clean water, restoration only requires drying the affected area. However, if the water originates from an appliance such as a dishwasher, it might contain waste materials such as food remains or detergents. In such cases, we clean the affected areas to sanitary levels. Our SERVPRO crew helps you achieve this in different ways. Both the portable and truck-mounted water extractors that we use have heating capabilities of up to 220° F, so it is easy to eliminate different types of soiling on carpets or other fabric materials. We also have pressure washers and a wide range of professional cleaning products. 

A water spillage incident cannot lead to long-term problems when you work with SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana during the restoration that follows. Call us at (217) 355-0077 any time. We’re Faster To Any Size Disaster. 

How to Be Proactive about Plumbing Issues in Your Commercial Business

12/7/2018 (Permalink)

Water damage in Champaign/Urbana

A broken pipe or cracked water main can be significant plumbing problems for business owners; however, while the plumbing issues can be detrimental for a property, the level of stress and pressure on the business owner can also present risks. It is better to manage property effectively and properly to minimize the chances of one of these major catastrophes.

  1. Preventative Maintenance

Preventative maintenance is one of the most important things a building owner can do to protect their property, the tenants, and employees. Preventative maintenance refers to the routine inspection of plumbing, sprinklers, pumps, and drains. While the inspection schedule for any of these items may vary, you may want to aim for at least one full-scale inspection per year.

2. Fix Minor Issues Before They Become Major Ones

While performing preventative maintenance is a wonderful prevention tool, it means nothing if issues are discovered and not addressed. The whole point in performing inspections is to find and resolve issues while they are still small, as opposed to waiting until the issue manifests into plumbing problems that can temporarily close down the business. Fixing these minor issues before they become major ones is just good business sense.

3. Find Backup You Can Count On

As being proactive about plumbing issues involves routine maintenance, it may be in your best interest to find a plumbing specialist in the Champaign/Urbana area that you can rely on and trust. You may want to speak with several companies and individuals before deciding because, as you will likely be doing business together for years to come, you want to feel comfortable in your decision.

If there is ever a plumbing issue rest assured that SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana will be here for you. You can reach us any time at (217) 355-0077

SERVPRO is the #1 Company to Call in Champaign/Urbana When Dealing With Fire Damage!

12/3/2018 (Permalink)

Dealing with commercial fire damage on your own can be devastating & stressful. Our techs can help you and give you peace of mind.

Assistance Helps Speed up Recovery after Commercial Fire Damage in Champaign/Urbana

Fires in commercial establishments can be very devastating. Apart from the loss they cause by damaging the structure and contents, they also lead to business closure, which translates to lost revenue. The longer it takes to resume normal operations, the higher the cost of lost opportunities. In the worst cases, the business might even lose customers. We offer restoration services that help commercial establishments recover faster after fire incidents. FSRT certification means our customers benefit from a combination of top-notch equipment and advanced skills sets throughout the restoration process. 

The steps taken immediately restoration starts can quicken, or hamper the speed of recovery after commercial fire damage in Champaign/Urbana. Our SERVPRO technicians rely on their IICRC training to do a thorough evaluation before starting the restoration process. Such evaluation helps us establish the primary form of damage. Depending on the materials and items present in the affected area, it could be a case of predominant flame or smoke damage. If it is a case of smoke damage, we need to establish whether wet or dry smoke is the most prevalent. Having such information helps determine the level of agitation, chemical action and dwell time needed for effective cleaning. 

Commercial spaces can present unique size challenges. In a space like a warehouse, the sheer size of the walls, ceilings and other areas that require cleaning can prolong the restoration. In a hotel or office space, the challenge could be large surfaces such as glass windows that require special care to avoid problems like streaking. Our SERVPRO crews use special equipment such as mobile scissor lifts, spotting pad holders and extensions poles when cleaning up vast surfaces saving time. 

Our SERVPRO team considers the entire restoration process to determine how much effort to put into each phase, which also helps save time. For instance, if restoration involves repainting the affected surfaces, we clean to remove debris and neutralize the acids in smoke residue then restore the visual appeal though painting.

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Restoring your fire damaged premises should not take too long. Call SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana to assist. You can reach us at (217) 355-0077 any time. 

Holiday Fire Safety Tips

12/1/2018 (Permalink)

Residential fires during the holiday season are more frequent, more costly, and more deadly than at any other time of the year. The U.S. Fire Administration (USFA) reports more than double the number of open-flame fires on Christmas Day than on an average day, and about twice as many on New Year’s Day. And when those fires occur, they do more damage: Property loss during a holiday fire is 34% greater than in an average fire, and the number of fatalities per thousand fires is nearly 70% higher. When the source of the fire is a highly flammable Christmas tree, the toll in property and lives is even greater.

To keep your household from becoming a holiday fire statistic, here are some safety tips to follow.

Cooking

Cooking is the top cause of holiday fires, according to the USFA. The most common culprit is food that’s left unattended. It’s easy to get distracted; take a pot holder with you when you leave the kitchen as a reminder that you have something on the stove. Make sure to keep a kitchen fire extinguisher that’s rated for all types of fires, and check that smoke detectors are working.

If you’re planning to deep-fry your holiday turkey, do it outside, on a flat, level surface at least 10 feet from the house.

Candles

The incidence of candle fires is four times higher during December than during other months. According to the National Fire Protection Association, four of the five most dangerous days of the year for residential candle fires are Christmas/Christmas Eve and New Year’s/New Year’s Eve. (The fifth is Halloween.)

To reduce the danger, maintain about a foot of space between the candle and anything that can burn. Set candles on sturdy bases or cover with hurricane globes. Never leave flames unattended. Before bed, walk through each room to make sure candles are blown out. For atmosphere without worry, consider flameless LED candles.

Christmas Trees

It takes less than 30 seconds for a dry tree to engulf a room in flames, according to the Building and Fire Research Laboratory of the National Institute for Standards and Technology. “They make turpentine out of pine trees,” notes Tom Olshanski, spokesman for the USFA. “A Christmas tree is almost explosive when it goes.”


To minimize risk, buy a fresh tree with intact needles, get a fresh cut on the trunk, and water it every day. A well-watered tree is almost impossible to ignite. Keep the tree away from heat sources, such as a fireplace or radiator, and out of traffic patterns. If you’re using live garlands and other greenery, keep them at least three feet away from heating sources.

No matter how well the tree is watered, it will start to dry out after about four weeks, Olshanski says, so take it down after the holidays. Artificial trees don’t pose much of a fire hazard; just make sure yours is flame-retardant.

Decorative Lights

Inspect light strings, and throw out any with frayed or cracked wires or broken sockets. When decorating, don’t run more than three strings of lights end to end. “Stacking the plugs is much safer when you’re using a large quantity of lights,” explains Brian L. Vogt, director of education for holiday lighting firm Christmas Décor. Extension cords should be in good condition and UL-rated for indoor or outdoor use. Check outdoor receptacles to make sure the ground fault interrupters don’t trip. If they trip repeatedly, Vogt says, that’s a sign that they need to be replaced.

When hanging lights outside, avoid using nails or staples, which can damage the wiring and increase the risk of a fire. Instead, use UL-rated clips or hangers. And take lights down within 90 days, says John Drengenberg, director of consumer safety for Underwriters Laboratories.  “If you leave them up all year round, squirrels chew on them and they get damaged by weather.”

Fireplaces

Soot can harden on chimney walls as flammable creosote, so before the fireplace season begins, have your chimney inspected to see if it needs cleaning. Screen the fireplace to prevent embers from popping out onto the floor or carpet, and never use flammable liquids to start a fire in the fireplace. Only burn seasoned wood — no wrapping paper.

When cleaning out the fireplace, put embers in a metal container and set them outside to cool for 24 hours before disposal. 

Should you have a fire emergency, no matter how big or how small, we here at SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana are ready to help 24 hours a day! Call us today at  (217)355-0077.

What's Fermenting in the Water Damage Inside Your Champaign/Urbana Brewery?

11/29/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial Water Damage Technicians in Champaign/Urbana Discuss The Importance Of Sanitization 

If a water leak ever takes place inside your Champaign/Urbana brewery, there are several types of different problems that could occur. Anytime building materials or contents get wet inside your structure, it is wise to get a professional restoration company like SERVPRO to perform commercial water damage mitigation. If structural components inside your building get saturated, they can lose their structural integrity and fall apart. The presence of moisture can also cause microbes that exist naturally in an environment to activate and form mold. When using a professional company to complete your commercial water damage project, we can take extra measures to prevent secondary problems like mold from happening.  

As soon as any organic materials inside a building get wet, our SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana technicians know that we have a 48-hour period to remove all moisture before fungi start to develop. During any commercial water damage in Champaign/Urbana, we utilize specialized equipment and techniques to drop moisture levels to normal conditions faster than two days. We start by extracting standing water and moisture out of heavily saturated materials with heavy-duty extraction equipment. We then set up a combination of air movers and dehumidifiers to change the environment so that it is conducive for rapid structural drying. Once the machines get set up, we use moisture sensors to monitor the progress of our drying efforts.  

When working inside your brewery, we know that cleanliness is vital. Our SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana team can take extra measures to make sure areas like your kitchen or brewing room do not get contaminated. When doing work that could stir up any dust we often seal off areas inside your building that must remain clean and disinfected. We know that the presence of water and elevated indoor humidity can create the right environment for harmful bacteria to form. To prevent harmful bacteria from contaminating your clean working environments, we also complete a final cleaning and disinfecting stage before we finalize your project.  

If you ever notice wet items inside your brewery, call SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana at (217) 355-0077 24 hours a day.

Watch Out For The Water You Can't See!

11/28/2018 (Permalink)

Did you know it only takes 1 to 2 inches of water to begin damaging your property?  Any type of water leak no matter the size can turn into much larger damage if not treated when discovered.  Unseen water can soak through carpets, walls, and pool on sub-floors causing big problems over time. The faster water is removed the less chance of possible serious damage.  That's why SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana is ready to spring into action anytime day or night to prevent these damages.  With the proper equipment and moisture measuring devices, the affected area is quickly and thoroughly dried.  This is important to prevent secondary water damage from occurring. Water that is hidden can also contain bacteria and causes mold growth. This can cause rotting along with a big health hazard.  A mop and common box fan will not fully take care of water damage issues.  That's why it is very important to contact the professionals at SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana at (217)355-0077 for any water damage recovery.

Immediate Fire Restoration and Why It's Important

11/28/2018 (Permalink)

Fires can be a devastating when they occur.  It is crucial though when a fire strikes that you get the restoration process started immediately.  The longer that it is put off the harder and more repairs will be needed. This also means the price of repairs goes up as well.  SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana specializes in fire damage and restoration.  Contacting us is the first step in getting the restoration underway. SERVPRO will try to save as much of your home and personal belongings that we can. Remember that safety comes first, so if there’s no way to safely gain access into your home, stay out until SERVPRO professionals arrive. On arrival we perform a thorough cleanup using our industrial-grade products and equipment, such as dry cleaning soot sponges to remove loose soot and specialized vacuum filters to clean carpet and upholstery.  Unfortunately fires happen, but when they do make sure you act quickly to get the damage cleaned up.  SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana takes fire damage and leaves it "Like it never even happened." Call SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana for your fire restoration needs anytime at (217) 355-0077

Illini Towers Sprinkler Damage

4/20/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Illini Towers Sprinkler Damage Our Emergency Response Team is ready for your call 24 hours a day.

Unfortunately, water and fire damages don't seem to stick to the traditional 8-5 schedule. SERVPRO understands that when you need us the most, it may not be under normal work hours. That's why SERVPRO is well-equipped to respond to your emergency disaster 24 / 7. That includes weekends and holidays. This location had a sprinkler head malfunction on the 12th floor at 11:30 pm. SERVPRO had crews on site in less than an hour therefore minimizing the amount of water damage to other areas. Time is crucial for a water damage. The longer the water sits, the more the building is prone to secondary growth and structural deterioration. Fortunately, with our quick response time, the need for replacing materials was reduced dramatically which in turn minimizes the cost of repairs. You should always trust SERVPRO in the event of ANY loss. 

Coffee at Tricoci Beauty School

2/27/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial Coffee at Tricoci Beauty School Butch, our Sales and Marketing Manager, hard at work during the Urbana Business Association's morning coffee at Tricoci Beauty School.

Our Marketing Team from Champaign hit the road Tuesday morning to join others involved in the Urbana Business Association for coffee at Tricoci Beauty School, located in the strip mall near the corner of University and Cunningham. Complimentary full body and hand massages was a great addition to a phenomenal breakfast. It is always a great opportunity to meet others from the community and to see all of the new businesses trying to pave their own way to success. There's not much better than getting your day started by brainstorming ideas, learning about different techniques to make your business flourish, make new friends, and catch up with old ones as well. SERVPRO looks to be a staple in the community and we will always be involved in the events around town supporting local business.

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