Recent Posts

Why SERVPRO when it comes to sewage cleanup!

3/12/2019 (Permalink)

The Dangers of DIY Sewage Cleanup

If you’re like most homeowners, when faced with a task or question you probably head to the internet for answers…that’s how you found this article! And if you’re dealing with backed-up sewage, it only takes a few seconds of searching to find hundreds of articles describing how to clean-up sewage.

It goes like this:

** Put on some rubber gloves

** Scoop out the waste

** Take some water and bleach solution and apply it to the affected areas

** Let it dry

Most articles will throw out a warning saying “if you’re not sure whether you can do it, or don’t have the proper equipment, it is best to call a professional”. That’s where you would call SERVPRO.

We’d like to throw out another warning!

Cleaning up raw sewage on your own is something you should never do! 
Here’s why:

#1 – It can be hidden. – Any SERVPRO crew member can tell you stories about customers that decided to clean-up their own feces only to call in weeks or months later complaining about smells and disfigured walls, cabinets, and floors. Sewage will find its way into any and all porous surfaces. Even things like drywall and cabinetry aren’t safe. And it’s not as simple as just spotting the sewage with your eyes. It requires state of the art equipment, which SERVPRO has, to identify areas that have been damaged by sewage. So unless you have an infrared detection system handy and know how to use it, call SERVPRO.

#2 – It can be costly. – Times are difficult for everyone and money is tight. It’s easy to justify doing it yourself instead of paying to have SERVPRO  clean and disinfect for you. But today’s shortcut is tomorrow’s nightmare! Again, you’re dealing with a toxic situation that if not handled properly can create very real health dangers for you and your family. Not only that, if not properly mitigated, you could be looking at a serious mold issue in the not so distant future on top of all of the other issues described above. And if you think sewage cleanup is costly, wait until you’re stuck with a bill for mold remediation services! At least your sewage clean-up is covered by insurance…that’s not typically the case if you’ve got mold and it’s the result of you not taking appropriate measures when dealing with the sewage issue that created the mold!


So, if you’ve stumbled upon this article due to a sewage back-up that’s spilled into your home or office, do yourself a favor and call us, SERVPRO. Our technicians are certified to perform raw sewage cleanup and can provide you with peace of mind knowing the area affected is professionally cleaned.

Locally Owned Company with Valuable Resources

As a locally owned and operated business, SERVPRO of North Elkhart County is strategically located to respond quickly to your water damage emergency and your mold cleanup. When there is mold in a home or business, we have the resources and personnel to help get your home or business back together.

Why SERVPRO When IT Comes To Restoring your business!

3/12/2019 (Permalink)

There's nothing quite as difficult for a commercial establishment as dealing with water damage. However, knowing what to do when disaster strikes can prevent you from experiencing unnecessary emotional upsets for yourself, your employees, and your customers and mitigate the economic strain of lost business. There are many steps you'll need to take to get your commercial property back in order following a water damaging event. Contacting a team of skilled water damage restoration experts from SERVPRO is a good first step.


Quick Water Removal Mitigates Monetary Loss 

The longer excess water remains on your commercial property, the more likely you are to suffer from costly water damage repairs to structural properties like ceiling tiles, insulation, drywall, and flooring. Then there is the concern of water damage to your capital investments: inventory, furniture, carpeting, electronic equipment and paper documents. Having a team of skilled water damage restoration experts like SERVPRO to begin immediately removing standing water can prevent you from spending unnecessary money on repairs.

Quick Remediation Prevents Secondary Water Damage.

Another benefit of a quick reaction to the pressing problem of water intrusion is that fast extraction helps prevent secondary water damage. Unfortunately, water damage creates a moist, wet environment within your business. Moisture and high humidity offer mold an opportunity to grow and spread throughout structural materials and wood furniture and fabrics. If your business deals with food distribution, high inventory loss may be a costly negative effect. For this reason, it's critically important to have standing water removed as quickly as possible. SERVPRO can arrive, usually in about one hour, with water removal equipment to meet any problem. 

Fast Restoration Helps You Get Back In Business

If the water intrusion, by way of a storm, flood, leak, or the aftermath of fire extinguishing causes severe water damage to your commercial business, you may have to relocate temporarily while water damage restoration work is being completed. Closed doors affect customer traffic, employee earnings, and your bottom line.  Insurance companies normally work hand-in-hand with SERVPRO to come to a working agreement allowing the water extraction process to commence immediately. 

Contact SERVPRO Today

If your commercial property has been subjected to water damage, getting fast, effective water damage restoration services is a must. Here at SERVPRO, we specialize in optimizing and expediting each component of the restoration process to ensure that you can get your business back in business. Moreover, each of our IICRC-Certified technicians will provide you with the personable care and excellent customer service that keeps you in the loop throughout the water damage restoration process. We can quickly reopen your doors like it never even happened.

Commercial Building Restoration Services

SERVPRO of North Elkhart County responds quickly to a water or fire, or mold damage emergency, 24 hours a day. Whether the damage occurs in a small business building or a big box store, we have the training, experience, and equipment to handle the situation. Our national network of 1,650 Franchises gives us access to personnel and resources. Call us for assistance today!

When Jack Frost Attacks!

2/8/2019 (Permalink)

Prepare now in case a winter storm hits and you are home for several days without power and heat.

• Prepare by gathering emergency supplies, making a family plan, and discussing emergency notifications and expectations with your workplace and/or schools.

• Install battery-powered or battery back-up carbon monoxide detectors.

• If you have access to an OUTSIDE generator, have an electric cord long enough to keep the generator at least 20 feet from any door, window, or vent.

• Make specific plans for how you will avoid driving.

Be alert to changing weather conditions using local alerts, radio, and other news sources for information and instructions. Stay indoors and avoid driving as much as possible.

• If the power goes out, close off unused rooms to consolidate and retain heat.

• Wear layered clothing and use blankets or sleeping bags to stay warm.

• Bring pets inside.

• NEVER use generators, outdoor heating or cooking equipment, such as a grill, camp stove, or a gasoline or propane heater, indoors.

• NEVER heat a home with a stove.

• If driving is absolutely necessary, keep disaster supplies in your vehicle, make sure your vehicle is properly equipped, and use extra precaution on the roads.

• Limit your time outdoors. If you are outside, protect yourself from frostbite and hypothermia by wearing several layers of warm, loose-fitting, light-weight clothing. 

Winter: Are You Ready?

2/8/2019 (Permalink)

Winter storms can bring freezing rain, ice, snow, high winds, or a combination of these conditions. Extreme winter weather can immobilize an entire region. Ice and heavy snowfall can knock out heat, power, and communication services. A winter storm occurs when there is significant precipitation and the temperature is low enough that precipitation forms as sleet or snow, or when rain turns to ice.

A winter storm can range from freezing rain and ice, to moderate snowfall over a few hours to a blizzard that last for several days, or be a combination of several winter weather conditions. Many winter storms are accompanied by dangerously low temperatures. Planning and preparing can help you manage the impact of a winter storm and keep you and your family safe. A sustained power outage can have a significant impact on people who require electricity to power medical equipment, so make sure that you have a pan to take care of yourself and your family during an outage. 

Winter Months: How To Keep Your Commercial Property Safe!

12/11/2018 (Permalink)

Keeping your commercial property safe for residents, employees, and visitors during the winter months require careful planning long before cold weather arrives. Consistent maintenance, property repairs, and seasonal improvements will ensure the safest environment throughout the harsh elements of the season for your patrons.

Inspect your property. Have your landscape management or maintenance team perform a property wide safety check. An inspection of sidewalks, driveways, parking lots, and hand rails will ensure that anyone walking the property in slick conditions are kept safe.

-Drop Salt and Sand. Untreated ice creates s slippery layer that is unsafe for tenants and progressively harder to clear as it thickens during sustained cold temperatures.

- Light Things Up! If you don't have it already installed, lighting to high traffic locations throughout your property, adding enhanced lighting to all main entrances, walk ways, stairs, and parking lots adds an additional level of safety and security.

- Remove Snow. Snow plowing of parking lots and driveways and snow blowing of all walkways are both quick methods that can be contracted in advance through a local service. 

- Make a plan. It is important to be prepared well in advance. Outline a winter weather procedure so that all employees, residents, and visitors are ready when the time comes.  

It's Cold Outside, But Fire Doesn't Care!

12/11/2018 (Permalink)

People are at greater risk in the winter season when they cook holiday meals, display decorations, and may use unsafe heat sources. The threat of winter fires is real; winter home fires amount for about 8% of the total number of fires in the U.S. Cooking is the leading cause of all winter home fires. A heat source to close to combustibles is the leading factor contributing to the start of a winter home fire. Here are some tips to keep you and your family safe:

- Place candles in a sturdy candle holder that will not tip over. Think about using battery operated flameless candles.

- Use holiday lighting safely; throw away light strands with frayed or pinched wires. Turn off all your holiday lights before going to bed or leaving the house.

- Water your Christmas tree everyday. A dry Christmas tree is dangerous because it can catch fire easily.

- Keep anything that can catch fire - oven mitts, wooden utensils, food packages, towels, and curtains- away from your stove top.

- Stay in the kitchen when you are frying, boiling, grilling, or broiling food to prevent fire. 

- In case of oven fire, turn off the oven and keep the door closed until it is cool.

- Use turkey fryers outdoors. Never use them on a wooden deck or in a garage. 

- Keep snow and ice 3 feet away from the fire hydrant. In case of fire, the firefighters need to be able to get to the hydrants quickly to protect people and property.  

Winter Tips-Water

12/4/2018 (Permalink)

Winter weather brings icy winds and dipping temperatures which can do a lot of damage to your home by freezing pipes and leaving you without flowing water. 

Before Freezing Weather:

- Disconnect and drain hoses from outside faucets. If your home has a separate shut-off valve for outside faucets, then use it to shut the water off to your outside faucets. Then go outside and turn on the faucets to drain water from the line. If your home does not have a separate shut-off valve for outside faucets, then wrap each outside faucets with insulation or newspaper.

-Insulate pipes or faucets in unheated areas such as the garage, crawl space, or/and attic. Check with your local home improvement store for which materials to use to insulate your pipes.

-Turn off and drain irrigation systems and backflow devices. Wrap backflow devices with insulating material.

-Cover foundation vents with foam blocks, thickly folded newspaper or cardboard.

-Show household members how to turn off water to the house in case of emergencies. The main shut-off valve is often located near the water heater or washing machine. If a pip burst anywhere in the house - kitchen, bath, basement, or crawl space - this valve turns it off. 

Don't forget, we are faster to any disaster, even winter ones! We will make it "Like it never even happened."

The Weather Outside Is Frightful

12/4/2018 (Permalink)

There are many precautions you can take to help you avoid the expense and inconvenience of frozen pipes during an extended cold spell.

 1. Leave the heat on at least 55 degrees and open cupboard doors under sinks, especially where plumbing is in outside walls, to let interior heat warm the pipes.

2. Temporarily, keep a steady drip of cold water at an inside faucet farthest from the meter. This keeps water moving, making it less likely to freeze.

3. If you are away for any length of time, you may consider shutting off your home’s water to reduce the chances of frozen or broken pipes. Contact your water provider for more information on how to do this.

4. Have your plumber and water provider’s telephone number handy. During an extended cold spell, your pipes might freeze despite the best precautions.

If Your Pipes Freeze

1. Determine which pipe(s) are frozen. If some faucets work but others don’t, that means pipes inside your home are likely frozen. If none of your faucets work, there may be a problem at the street - contact your water provider.

2. Find the frozen pipe(s) and attempt to thaw them with a hair dryer using a low setting. Wave the hair dryer back and forth along the frozen area. NEVER thaw a frozen pipe with an open flame.

3. Shut off water and power (or gas) to the water heater if you have a leak or a broken pipe. Contact your water provider if you are unable to find the shut-off valve or the valve doesn’t work. 

Your Commercial Property: Keeping It Safe During The Winter

12/4/2018 (Permalink)

Keeping your commercial property safe for residents, employees, and visitors during the winter months require careful planning long before cold weather arrives. Consistent maintenance, property repairs, and seasonal improvements will ensure the safest environment throughout the harsh elements of the season for your patrons.

Inspect your property. Have your landscape management or maintenance team perform a property wide safety check. An inspection of sidewalks, driveways, parking lots, and hand rails will ensure that anyone walking the property in slick conditions are kept safe.

-Drop Salt and Sand. Untreated ice creates s slippery layer that is unsafe for tenants and progressively harder to clear as it thickens during sustained cold temperatures.

- Light Things Up! If you don't have it already installed, lighting to high traffic locations throughout your property, adding enhanced lighting to all main entrances, walk ways, stairs, and parking lots adds an additional level of safety and security.

- Remove Snow. Snow plowing of parking lots and driveways and snow blowing of all walkways are both quick methods that can be contracted in advance through a local service. 

- Make a plan. It is important to be prepared well in advance. Outline a winter weather procedure so that all employees, residents, and visitors are ready when the time comes.  

Don't forget, we are faster to any disaster and we will make it "Like it never even happened."

Fire Safety In The Winter

12/4/2018 (Permalink)

People are at greater risk in the winter season when they cook holiday meals, display decorations, and may use unsafe heat sources. The threat of winter fires is real; winter home fires amount for about 8% of the total number of fires in the U.S. Cooking is the leading cause of all winter home fires. A heat source too close to combustibles is the leading factor contributing to the start of a winter home fire. Here are some tips to keep you and your family safe:

- Place candles in a sturdy candle holder that will not tip over. Think about using battery operated flameless candles.

- Use holiday lighting safely; throw away light strands with frayed or pinched wires. Turn off all your holiday lights before going to bed or leaving the house.

- Water your Christmas tree everyday. A dry Christmas tree is dangerous because it can catch fire easily.

- Keep anything that can catch fire - oven mitts, wooden utensils, food packages, towels, and curtains- away from your stove top.

- Stay in the kitchen when you are frying, boiling, grilling, or broiling food to prevent fire. 

- In case of oven fire, turn off the oven and keep the door closed until it is cool.

- Use turkey fryers outdoors. Never use them on a wooden deck or in a garage. 

- Keep snow and ice 3 feet away from the fire hydrant. In case of fire, the firefighters need to be able to get to the hydrants quickly to protect people and property.