Pack Outs? Easy!
Worried about what happens to your belongings after a fire or water loss? Have no fear, our team of SERVPRO Heroes are at your service! We’ve got the manpower and resources to pack your contents (even the fragile ones) and move them either to a safe storage space or cleaned and restored while the restoration process is ongoing.
You’d Rather Pack Your Own Belongings?
No problem! We’ll provide you with boxes, tape, and all necessary packing materials; allowing you to box up the contents of your home. Our team will move the boxes to their destination and move them back into your home once the restoration process is complete.
We strive to make the restoration process as simple for you as we can. From communicating with your insurance company, to packing up your belongings…. We’re always Here to Help!
Buying A Home? Check That Chimney!
A home inspection does not always mean everything was inspected…. Sometimes inspectors overlook the chimney. When it comes to the safety of your home, and those in it, we feel like that is a critical oversight.
Chimney service companies can do much more than what you might remember from Mary Poppins! These folks can make repairs, add a chimney cap, and perform a complete inspection. They provide a thorough, professional evaluation and solutions to fix anything that might need it.
While a gas fireplace puts off less smoke, it still uses that chimney to disperse heat and smoke from the fire. Even though it is fueled differently than a wood-burning fire, it still requires a check-up.
When you are planning to purchase a home it is a fair request to ask that the chimney be professionally inspected.
Air Duct Cleaning
Air ducts are typically the number one reason for poor indoor air quality. You can’t see them, so they’re often forgotten about. Regular inspection and maintenance could help prolong their lifespan and improve your air!
Air ducts move most of the air throughout your home, bringing warm and cold air from the HVAC unit to various areas. While they’re moving this air they’re collecting dust, pollen, dirt and debris, odors and other contaminants. All the pet hair you find in corners, on your furniture and under the bed? Imagine what your air ducts must look like?!
By having your air ducts professionally cleaned you can:
- Increase the energy efficiency of your HVAC unit
- Reduce the potential for mold growth
- Eliminate offensive odors
For your free air duct cleaning estimate, give us a call at 803-749-0178
When The Smoke Clears....
Enduring a fire in your home or business is a traumatic experience no matter the size of the flames. After the fear, adrenaline and chaos have subsided you’re faced with the horrors of “what now?”
If you’re structure was not a complete loss, you’re facing smoke and soot damage, electrical hazards, displacement. Thankfully the United States Fire Administration compiled some helpful information:
- SAFETY – Your #1 priority right now. For yourself, your loved ones, your pets and your home/business! The structure could be deemed unstable or hazardous because of the fire. Adhere strictly to the instructions provided from your local authorities and fire professionals.
- MAKE THE CALL – Your insurance provider should be one of the first calls you make. They will be able to assist you through the entire process of restoring your home/business to pre-fire condition. You should also inform your mortgage company and/or property owner if that is not you.
- GATHER – If you are given permission to enter the premises, collect and secure any important documents you may need. Social Security cards, Birth Certificates, Passports, and other forms of ID. Do not attempt to move or remove any damaged items as your insurance company will want to see them in their post-fire state.
Should you or a loved one experience a fire at your home or business, give the pros at SERVPRO of The Dutch Fork a call! We’ll help you make it “Like it never even happened.”
Are You Hiring The Right People?
The Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification, or IICRC, is the organization that sets the globally recognized standards for our industry. This non-profit group works to publish materials, courses, and standards of best practices for those in the inspection, cleaning, restoration, and installation industries. They offer a variety of certifications that pertain to the restoration industry, among others. Each certification requires multiple hours of classroom style learning, followed by an exam.
Why Hire an IICRC Certified Firm?
SERVPRO of The Dutch Fork is an IICRC Certified Firm, and all our employees possess at least one IICRC Certification. By assigning well-trained, and qualified individuals to our projects, we’re able to provide peace of mind to customers. There’s no guess work when you’ve got proven facts backing the practices we put in place.
Along with certifying our staff, each member of our team is vetted with a thorough background check and required to wear a uniform. We feel this is important because of the nature of our work. We’re entering people’s homes, their businesses, we’re in the midst of their personal space and belongings. While we work, we want you to feel safe.
When disaster strikes on your property, call the IICRC Certified Professionals at SERVPRO of The Dutch Fork (803) 749-0178.
Choosing The Correct Extension Cord
As we get further into the summer months we’re doing more outdoors. Cookouts, bouncy houses, inflatable waterslides, hanging patio lights – the usual summer fun! What do all of those activities have in common? The need for a power source! Before you hook that extension cord up, are you sure it’s the best one for the job?
Electrical fires are commonly started in overloaded power outlets. We pile as many plugs as possible into that one outlet, and when it surpasses its limitations can trip a breaker or cause a fire!
Know Your Limitations!
Determine how many amps are required for the item you want to power. Using that number, you should be able to determine if you need a light, medium or heavy-duty cord. There IS a difference in indoor vs. outdoor extension cords and they should not be used interchangeably.
Keep any power source away from water. That means puddles, coolers that can leak, kiddie pools, etc. Water and electricity do not mix! Also avoid heavy traffic areas and driveways or places where cars might have to drive over any electric cords.
Take proper precautions, know your limitations and choose proper equipment to keep you and your home safe this summer!
Leaving Town? Turn Off That Water!
We recently received a call from a homeowner that returned from vacation to find their home in disarray. Ceilings had fallen, drywall crumbled, and most of their belongings were soaking wet! At some point during their trip, there was a plumbing issue that caused water to back up and flooded the inside of the home, causing major damage.
When we arrived on-site to start removing the standing water and non-salvageable materials, we were given the opportunity to share a teaching moment. Had this family been home, they likely could have avoided the extent of damage that they are now facing. We showed them the location of their water shut-off point or valve, which stops all water from flowing into the home. Turning off the water until a plumber can address your issues helps to minimize damage and keep the affected areas to a minimum. Saving yourself money and limiting the overall damage.
If you plan to leave your home unattended for longer than a few hours, even if it is just a weekend trip, we advise turning off the water to your home! Returning to a swimming pool in your living room is not what you want to come home to.
Cutting Costs Can Cost You!
We have received several calls from businesses, churches, and office buildings, especially during the pandemic, that have temporarily shut down only to return to a building with mold growth. It’s a scary sight! Mold produces an unpleasant odor and can cause health effects after prolonged periods of time. Before shutting the facility down temporarily, operations managers may attempt to reduce energy costs and turn off the HVAC system, electricity and more. But we know that sometimes cutting costs can cost you!
By turning off the HVAC system you are most certainly going to lower your energy bills, and for a building that is not being used, that may seem like a good financial decision. But turning off the HVAC system means there is no air circulating within those walls. It becomes stagnant, and in this South Carolina heat, it becomes quite humid. Warm, moist air creates the perfect growing environment for mold spores. The methods used to properly clean and eliminate future mold growth can become costly and cause an even bigger financial burden.
Consider turning the temperature up around 78 or higher, rather than turning the system off entirely.
Water Heater Burst? We Can Help!
Next to plumbing, water heaters are one of the most common sources of water damage in a home. They are not usually placed in highly visible areas, which makes forgetting about them and their maintenance, easy to do. A water heater can cause serious water damage, fast. They contain large amounts of water, but they are also connected to supply lines that fill rooms with water very quickly.
It’s important to maintain any system in your home, and much like your HVAC unit that gets a routine checkup or cleaning, do the same for your hot water source! While they do have a significant life span, it’s not the most wise choice to push it to its’ limits.
If you have discovered your water heater leaking, or walked into a puddle of water:
- Turn the Supply Off
- Locate the cold-water supply pipe, turn the valve clockwise until it is closed. This turns off the supply to the tank.
- Shut off Power
- An electric or gas heating element can stay heated long after the water has escaped the tank. Wasting energy and posing a fire hazard. Locate your breaker box and turn the power off completely.
- Remove any undamaged furniture, rugs and salvageable belongings. They’re dry and you’d like for them to stay that way!
- Call SERVPRO!
- We’ll help you walk through an insurance claim, the mitigation process and any necessary repairs to make your home “Like it never even happened.”
The ULTIMATE Cleaning Product
Eco-Friendly, Non-Toxic, All-Natural, Bleach Free, Disinfecting – all of these are phrases you might see when you are shopping for cleaning products. But how do you know what is true or the “best” option? We’re not here to write reviews or provide a pros and cons list of the thousands of cleaning products currently on the market. But we do have a simple and cost-effective solution to help you in cleaning essentially every surface in your home! In fact, you probably already have it sitting on a shelf.
Distilled White Vinegar is one of the most versatile and cost-effective cleaning products you can find. While it does not contain a perfumy scent, it can easily cut through mildew, bacteria, and grime. It is safe for use on a wide variety of surfaces, and harm your children or pets. Not sold yet? We’ve listed a number of the ways you might use vinegar to clean your home!
Refrigerator: Spills or leaks inside your fridge? You don’t want chemicals where you store your food. Wipe up spills using a cloth dampened with equal parts vinegar and water.
Drains: Pour vinegar on a scrub brush small enough to get inside the disposal or drain grate. Sprinkle the brush with baking soda and scrub to remove built-up grime and odor causing bacteria.
Cutting Boards: spray the surface with 100% vinegar, then rinse to clean.
Microwave: remove those hard-to-clean microwave splatters by putting ½ cup vinegar and ½ cup water in a glass bowl. Microwave on high 2-3 minutes or until it begins to boil – wipe away buildup with ease!
Stained Plastic Containers: coat the container in vinegar, let it sit for a few minutes then wash as usual. If you find that you have tough tomato or high acidity food stains put 1 tsp of dish soap in the container, a folded paper towel and enough water to cover that paper towel. Place the lid back on the container and shake until the stains are gone!
Countertops: spray vinegar onto the surface and wipe it away with a warm, wet rag. However, you should avoid cleaning countertops with vinegar if you have granite or marble.
Toilet: to clean a toilet with vinegar, pour about a cup of vinegar in the bowl and allow it to soak overnight. For tough jobs, empty the toilet water first. The next day, spread baking soda or borax in the bowl, scrub and flush!
Tub or sink drain: pour ½ cup distilled white vinegar around the closed drain and allow it to sit for several hours, penetrating any build up or soap scum. Scrub to remove, drain and rinse!
Shower: Bring vinegar to a boil, then carefully use the warm vinegar to wipe down the shower door and walls. Keep them damp by wiping them down every couple of minutes for 30 minutes. Using a non-scratch sponge soaked in vinegar, sprinkle it with baking soda and scrub. Rinse with clean water to wash away soap scum, mold, water spots and germs!
Showerhead: Pour some white vinegar into a plastic bag, then using a rubber band or twist tie, secure it around the showerhead. The showerhead should be completely submerged in the vinegar. Leave the bag on overnight and remove before showering.
Tile: mix ½ cup white distilled vinegar with a gallon of warm water. Mop floors or scrub countertops with the solution and allow to air dry.
Mattress Disinfectant: mix distilled white, a little rubbing alcohol, and some tea tree oil in a spray bottle. Lightly spray on the mattress to help combat general odors, mildew and dust mites.
The list of uses for cleaning with Distilled Vinegar is virtually endless! Keep a bottle of 50/50 Vinegar and Water on hand for all of your quick clean-up needs.