Recent Posts

3 Ways to Minimize the Need for Storm Damage Restoration Services

4/26/2021 (Permalink)

1. Inspect Your Roof on Regular Intervals

Something as simple as a cracked tile or a blown off shingle can cause real damage in a storm. The power of water is that it only needs a small area to enter, but it can get in and travel through the walls and other structures, damaging a much wider area. This can cost a lot!

Set up periodic checks on your roof (at least every 6 months) to make sure that your roof is still in tact. You can either do this yourself (but be very careful) or have a professional check. A professional checking may cost as little as $100 (or less), but damage can cost in the $1,000s!

2. Trim Dead Wood around Your Home on Regular Intervals

By far the most common cause of damage to a home is caused by flying debris. Trees are a big liability in our area.

Just like your roof, have regular intervals during the year that you check for, and cut, dead branches on nearby trees.

3. Consider Storm-Safe Windows

High-quality storm windows will help prevent unnecessary breaks of windows during a strong storm. In addition to breaks, it will also prevent leaks. Both of which can be very inconvenient and uncomfortable for your family.

For more tips on how to avoid the need for costly storm damage restoration services, contact our team from SERVPRO of Wood, Ritchie & Pleasants Counties at 304-428-7378 we’d be more than happy to help.

How a Small Amount of Water In Your Home Can Create a Major Health Hazard (and how to resolve it)

4/12/2021 (Permalink)

Water is invasive and silent. It can sit inside your carpet and other furniture, a bring life. But sometimes to the type of life that poses potential health effects.

Mold.

Mold and Black Toxic Mold can grow from a very small amount of moisture in the air. This is where it becomes a problem.

Feeding ground.

Mold and Black Toxic Mold release spores into the air. These spores, when inhaled, can create health effects.

Take action.

Some moisture is necessary in the air, but in highly humid areas, it’s important to release the moisture. Areas that are highly prone to humidity include the bathroom, laundry and some basements.

Release the moisture.

Open the windows or turn on an exhaust fan and let the moisture out. When it can escape, it will. The moisture wants to get out of the house and into the atmosphere. Let it.

Wipe down the excess.

At times the moisture creates condensation on the walls. Wipe this down as soon as possible so that the water cannot seep into the materials and create a mold-breeding environment.

Use a Dehumidifier.

If you cannot do the two, try this option. Dehumidifiers sell at some home shops or Home Depot, but don’t be sucked in by the cheap ones because some of them don’t clear our the moisture, they just clear out your wallet.

Find out some more information.

Black Toxic Mold: Avoid Having this Risk In the Family Home

Dehumidifiers: Why are they better?

What is a Dehumidifier and Why Is It Better?

4/5/2021 (Permalink)

Dehumidifiers are an important piece of equipment used in the drying process of water damage restoration, but why? Is it really necessary or just a big piece of equipment to look fancy?

The Silent Killer - Water

Where fire is obvious, water can damage your items in silence and slowly, until it’s too late. Unlike fire, water comes in different forms that cause damage; liquid and vapor, and when left alone, they allow for mold growth as well as other issues, such as erosion of your structures.

Even after the obvious water has been removed, there is still humidity (water vapor) in the air. This vapor creates a breeding ground for mold, and also the opportunity to shift into water and damage furniture.

This is Why Dehumidifiers are Used

As the name suggests, the dehumidifiers remove the humidity (and moisture) from the air and other materials.

By removing the moisture, your furniture and other items are significantly less likely to be vulnerable to mold growth.

If you ever need any questions answered, or need help with fire, mold, storm or water damage, please call your local team at SERVPRO on 304-428-7378 or contact us on our contact page.

From the team at SERVPRO of Wood, Ritchie & Pleasants Counties.

6 Important Points to Know About Candle Fires in Homes in West Virginia

3/29/2021 (Permalink)

Home fires are often caused by the smallest, and most beautiful looking items in our homes. A simple scented (or non-scented) candle can turn your home from beauty to burned down in a matter of minutes.

Candles serve their purpose and it’s important that if you enjoy them, keep using them, but please practice safety whenever using candles.

To give you (and the community) a bigger understanding of the dangers  National Fire Protection Association (www.nfpa.org) here are 6 important points you know should know to understand how common it is. Hopefully this will motivate more safety in our community.

During the five-year period of 2014-2018:

  1. Candles caused 2% of reported home fires, 3% of home fire deaths, 6% of home fire injuries, and 4% of the direct property damage in home fires.
  2. Roughly one-third (37%) of home candle fires started in bedrooms. These fires caused 40% of the associated deaths and 49% of the associated injuries.
  3. Falling asleep was a factor in 10% percent of the home candle fires and 15% of the associated deaths.
  4. On average, 21 home candle fires were reported per day. 
  5. Three of every five (60%) of home candle fires occurred when some form of combustible material was left or came too close to the candle.
  6. December is the peak time of year for home candle fires. In December, 12% of home candle fires began with decorations compared to 4% the rest of the year.

A burned down home or business is not only traumatic, it’s also a very slow, long and expensive process to get your life back to normal again. Please be careful, and follow the safety measures.

If you would like more information on fire safety we have a lot of great resources that you can read though by clicking here.

If you have any more questions please call SERVPRO of Wood, Ritchie & Pleasants Counties on 304-428-7378

3 Ways Your Electricals Can Burn Down Your House (and how to avoid it)

3/23/2021 (Permalink)

Electrical Fires are common problems in the family home (and in businesses). Their damage can range from small to catastrophe.

At SERVPRO, we've seen family homes severely damaged from easily avoidable electrical issues. We urge you to read this closely, but more importantly follow the steps. A few minutes every few months could save your home or business going up in flames. 

What Are The Leading Causes of Electrical Fires?

1. A lack of air flow: Electrical equipment and wires heat up. Obvious? Yep! But we commonly have multiple wires sitting together, without the ability to cool down. Just like this person in Parkersburg! [Click here to view] 

2. Overloading the Circuit. Have you ever seen (or even have) a power board with piles of cords plugged into it? Sometimes these can get so crazy that it looks like a game of Pick up Sticks. Each cable added to the power board exponentially increases the risk of short-circuiting happening, which can spark and cause a fire.

3. Damaged Wires: Damaged wires are a fire waiting to happen. Similar to having an overloaded circuit, a damaged wire has a dramatically increased risk of creating a spark and therefore creating a fire.

How to Avoid these Risks in under 5 minutes.

Make sure to routinely check your power outlets and wires. It will take you less than a few minutes to do the entire home (or business). 

  1. Check your wires have enough space: Resolving this issue will be the longest to fix of the three. This issue may require professional help such as from an electrician. But before you "put this on the back burner" have another look at what happened to a home in Parkersburg (who were lucky). [Click here to view] 
  2. Check your Power Outlets: As a general rule, if your power boards have 3 sockets, only use the 3. Do not add additional adapters into the sockets. 
  3. Replace all damaged wires: Wires are thankfully affordable to replace these days. So if there's a cable that's damaged, throw it out and buy a new one. If it requires special attention we recommend calling your local electrician for help. Remember, a few dollars to get someone to fix it is cheaper than a burned out room in your home!

We hope this has helped. To read through 3 Ways Your Kitchen Can Burn Your House Down (and How to Avoid It) click here.

If you ever need any questions answered, or need help with fire, mold, storm or water damage, please call your local team at SERVPRO on 304-428-7378 or contact us on our contact page.

From the team at SERVPRO of Wood, Ritchie & Pleasants Counties.

SERVPRO Technicians will consider these 4 Dangers when treating your Water Damage Restoration Service

3/15/2021 (Permalink)

During any water damage restoration service there are 4 major dangers that are at play. These include Electrical Hazards, Mold, Septic Tank Spillage & Other Waste Hazards and Structural Damage.

To better understand how our technicians approach these dangers we will give some information in this article. Each job will have differences and nuances and your technician will be better suited to answer detailed about your job.

Electrical Hazards

Electricity and water mix a little too well, and this makes it dangerous. When approaching any water issues our technicians will immediately assess any electrical connections and make sure that they’re turned off.

If you are aware of any circuit boards or other electrical outlets please notify the technicians immediately so that they can neutralize the issue as soon as possible to keep themselves, and others safe.

Mold

Mold growth after water damage is highly likely. Without proper eradication of water (in all areas) your home / premises is vulnerable to mold growth. SERVPRO technicians will make sure that full water eradication through use of fans and other drying appliances is achieved.

Septic Tank Spillage & Other Waste Hazards

Septic tanks and other biological waste spillage is a potential health hazard to people. This type of water can carry high amounts of bacteria and fungi which could cause serious health effects.

For this reason when SERVPRO technicians are called out and we notice one of these issues, the area is immediately block access to the area to prevent any further contamination.

Please notify the SERVPRO technicians of known septic tanks when they arrive so that they can check for any potential ruptures.

Structural Damage

Water is highly effective at creating structural damage (even more so than fire), and what’s more is that water can slowly erode the structure. SERVPRO technicians will check thoroughly through the buildings fixtures, structures and supports to make sure that your building is structurally sound and free from any potential water.

Please remember: Each job will have differences and nuances and your technician will be better suited to answer detailed about your job.

If you have any further questions please do not hesitate to ask by calling SERVPRO of Wood, Ritchie & Pleasants Counties on 304-428-7378 or email us by clicking here.

3 Ways Your Kitchen Can Burn Your House Down (and How to Avoid It)

3/8/2021 (Permalink)

Home fires in Wood County and surrounding areas can cost families $10,000 to well over $100,000, and in 90% of occurrences, they are easily avoidable.

After 3 years in the local area we have noticed that there are 3 common causes of home fires. Knowing them is important so that you can avoid having this heartbreaking event happen to you. And here is the first of the 3:

Your Cooking Equipment

Cooking fires are placed as the number one cause of home fires in the United States, according to the National Fire Protection Association. This is consistent with what we’ve seen in the local area.

Best Practices to Keep Your Home and Family Safe

Never walk away from the stove / kitchen top.

In a matter of minutes (sometimes even less) pots and pans can overheat, catching something nearby on fire, which can quickly escalate to a much larger fire.

DO NOT have any Flammable items within 3 feet of your stove, toaster or any other items that cook.

This is a matter of minimising risk. If something is to catch fire by accident, if something is close, it adds to the fire and allows it to spread (or jump) to the next item. So keep all flammable items including towels more than 3 feet away so that if a fire starts it cannot spread.

NEVER throw water onto burning oil or grease.

We cannot stress how dangerous this is. By throwing water onto your burning oil you’re creating a bomb. The water initially goes below the oil / grease, but heats up fast, turning to gas, which then tries to quickly escape above the oil / grease, causing the oil/grease to explode. This will likely burn your face and body, and also jump onto other flammable items. Do this instead: turn off the stove. Let it cool down on its own.

We hope this helped. If you have any further questions or would like some tips, please do not hesitate to call us on 304-428-7378 or email us on this page —> click here.

From the team at SERVPRO of Wood, Ritchie & Pleasants Counties

Read More:

3 Ways Your Electricals Can Burn Down Your House (and how to avoid it)

Do THIS Easy and Free Trick to Avoid Expensive Gutter Collapse this Winter

3/1/2021 (Permalink)

The Mid-Ohio Vally has been hit by an excessive amount of snow the past two weeks and homes are falling prey to roof and gutter collapses all around the area as a result.

If you haven’t already; make sure to do this simple trick to help rid your roof and gutters of snow build up.

Why Does the Gutter Collapse?

When snow builds up in your gutters some of that snow temporarily melts, becomes water, and then solidifies to ice. This allows more water (ice) to fill up your gutters and create a much heavier unit that sits in your gutters.

Your Gutters are not Build to Hold That

Gutters are only built to temporarily hold water before it streams down the pipes. So when it has weight for extended periods of time, it weighs down the gutters and joinery, pulling them off.

They Pull the Walls and Roof Too

It’s rarely a clean rip. The gutters don’t just come off, they bring the walls, tiles and supports with them; potentially creating holes in the roof, or walls, letting snow and water into your home. This becomes much more expensive in the remediation process because now you have to restore outside, inside and the supports. Not to mention water damage and possible mold growth too.

DO THIS: Throw Your Pantyhose on the Roof

This cheap and simple trick is well known, but perhaps not completely understood. But knowing why you’re doing it, will help you know where is the best place to throw them.

Step 1: Fill some old pantyhose (or even buy new, they’re quite affordable) with salt or calcium chloride then tie up the end tightly so that it’s like a ball of salt in the foot of the pantyhose.

Step 2: Fling the pantyhose onto the roof at different heights. The higher the better (we’ll explain why in the next section).

Step 3: If possible, keep an eye on the pantyhose because you may need to throw some more up later to replenish.

Why does this work?

First we must know the freezing points for both water and salt water. Water has a freezing point of 32ºF where as salt water freezes at 28.4ºF. This difference is all the reason! … huh?

Ok, so when the snow melts slightly, the salt in the pantyhose mixes with the water, creating salt(ish) water. Now, it requires a lower temperature to freeze. This difference means that the snow will take longer to freeze, allowing it time to escape down your drains and not stay in the gutters.

Wrapping it up:

So there you have it, fling up those salty pantyhose so the water and snow takes a little longer to freeze, and you will minimise the chance of ice freezing in your gutters.

We hope this helped. If you have any further questions or would like some tips, please do not hesitate to call us on 304-428-7378 or email us on this page —> click here.

From the team at SERVPRO of Wood, Ritchie & Pleasants Counties

3 Must-Do Steps in Your Business to Potentially Avoid a Devastating Fire

2/13/2021 (Permalink)

Do you have a concrete fire safety protocol in your business? Do you have a routine Fire Extinguisher check? This simple act, could potentially save $10,000 to $100,000+ in damages. A small fire (which could be stopped from a fire extinguisher) can very quickly grow through your entire business in a matter of minutes.

If you already haven’t, make this safety protocol (which takes merely minutes once you’ve set it up) part of your policy immediately.

  1. Have a fire extinguisher safely mounted to the wall in every major room.
  2. Make sure that every staff member knows where they are located.
  3. Create a fire marshal responsibility to one of your staff who are responsible for:
    1. Knowing the fire extinguisher’s expiries
    2. Having them replaced before they expire
    3. Making sure that the staff are all knowledgeable of how to operate the fire extinguishers.
    4. For more information on fire extinguishers visit keystonefire.com

How to Safely Operate Your Fire Extinguisher in an Emergency

Remember the Acronym - P.A.S.S.

P - Pull the Pin on the fire extinguisher

A - Aim the nozzle or hose at the base of the fire. Keep a safe distance away.

S - Squeeze the handle to release the extinguishing materials

S - Sweep the nozzle from side to side.

Continue directing the foam at the base of the fire until it is completely extinguished.

Please, if you haven’t got a policy and procedure already in place, we cannot stress enough to make sure that you revisit what we’re saying in this article and implement it immediately. It could save you a lot of money and heartache.

If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to ask our team for information by calling 304-428-7378 or contact us by clicking here.

Hope this has helped,

The team at SERVPRO of Wood, Ritchie & Pleasants Counties

How SERVPRO trains their Technicians / Staff

2/9/2021 (Permalink)

Your home and business is important to you. Therefore it’s important that people who are highly trained, professional and respectful come into your home when you need help the most.

At SERVPRO of Wood, Ritchie & Pleasants Counties we are always striving to improve your experience. Thorough training, getting our employees knowledgeable to give you the best service possible is our first step. All technicians go through the below certifications and on-going teachings.

  • IICRC Training
  • SERVPRO© Employee Certification Training
  • SERVPRO© Franchise Training
  • e-Learnings
  • Continuing Education Classes

IICRC Training and Certification

The Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) sets the standards for the cleaning and restoration industries across the United States of America.

Our Professionals study IICRC standards and best practices in water restoration, fire restoration, mold remediation, carpet and upholstery cleaning, COVID sanitization and other cleaning and restoration courses.

SERVPRO© Employee Certification Training

The Employee Certification Training is a voluntary, self-paced program designed for SERVPRO Franchise employees. Certification is awarded after successful completion of course materials and an examination. Modules include:

  • Crew Training
  • Fire Restoration
  • Water Restoration
  • Carpet & Upholstery Cleaning

SERVPRO© Franchise Training

A 15-day intensive hands-on course at the SERVPRO Corporate Training Facility is the foundation of the SERVPRO training program for owners covering many restoration topics:

  • Fire Restoration
  • Water Restoration
  • Carpet & Upholstery Cleaning
  • Mold Mitigation

e-Learnings

A voluntary, on-going program designed for fine tuning staff skills and know-how. Video presentations and support materials are followed by a knowledge test at the end of each module. This keeps our technicians and office staff up to speed on industry standards and the professional quality you expect.

If you would like to ask any further questions about our staff training, applying for a job, or questioning about any issues you may have in your home or business, please call our friendly staff on 304-428-7378 or email us on our contact page.

We hope that this has helped.

The team at SERVPRO of Wood, Ritchie & Pleasants Counties.