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3 Tips for Space Heater Fire Prevention

9/18/2020 (Permalink)

Space heater Your space heater should come with instructions for use

Keeping Your Home Safe

If you’re worried about having a burned space heater in your Rockland, WI, home, then you may want to consider some of these fire prevention tips before it becomes necessary to contact a fire damage restoration service for a smoke cleanup. Here are three things you can do to help keep your home safe.

1. Choose a Heater With Safety Features

One way to keep your home safe when using a space heater is to use one with build-in safety features. These can help prevent a problem you might not catch in time. For example, many heaters have turn off features that will shut the unit off if it is knocked over or grows too hot. You may want to look for a heater that has certification for a testing organization as well as these agencies look at possible problems and safety features of each model they test.

2. Place the Heater Carefully

One way to help prevent a burned space heater in your home is to make sure it is properly placed. The floor should be level and made of a hard surface that is not flammable in nature. You should also ensure that the area around the heater is free of clutter and that children and pets are not in danger of knocking the unit over. Always unplug your heater when not in use.

3. Follow Proper Use Instructions

Your space heater should come with instructions for use. These are important to follow as doing so can help prevent some of the risks that could lead to a fire. These instructions should also be consulted for any maintenance or repair needs.

When looking for ways to prevent a burned space heater in your home keep these three tips in mind. Choose a heater that has safety features already built-in, make sure the space the heater will be placed into is safe, and always follow the manufacturer’s instructions for use. Remember, if a fire does occur, a restoration service can help.

How a Building Envelope Can Protect Your Property During a Storm

9/11/2020 (Permalink)

Construction details - framing installing the roof truss system A building envelope is thus the various systems that surround your property

Understanding The Concept Of A Building Envelope

A storm can cause massive rain damage to your commercial building. Floods, in particular, can harm your assets and encourage the growth of black mold.
Storm cleanup experts are available in Bangor, WI, to help with the post-flood restoration. Yet you should also take steps to limit the harm before the rain arrives. To do this, you must understand the concept of the building envelope.

Parts of the Envelope
An envelope is essentially any outer membrane or shell. A building envelope is thus the various systems that surround your property. This includes the walls and the roof.
The envelope has many functions. It can support key equipment and divert water to the storm drains. Yet perhaps the envelope's most important role is blocking:

  • Hail
  • Vapor
  • Snow
  • Ice
  • Rain

Causes of the Leaks
A defect in the envelope can cause rain damage to your building. Specifically, the walls will leak when water is present and driven inward by forces such as gravity or wind. The water then needs a way to enter the building, whether that is a crack in a wall or a gap under a window.
Of course, you cannot change the weather or gravity. To prevent water infiltration during a storm, you should thus secure the building's envelope as much as possible. This is easier said than done, as water can enter the property through holes that are as small as 0.005 inches.

Protection of the Building
Still, there are ways to stop rainwater from getting inside your building. Use sealants and membranes to block any moisture. Overhangs, baffles, and projections can help, as well.
There are also backup systems you can install to further protect the property. For instance, you can create weeps, or small openings, in the wall that let moisture drain outside the building.
To keep the inside of your property dry during a storm, you should secure the building's envelope. This will limit the rain damage to the premises.

Are La Crosse County Businesses Ready for the Next Disaster?

8/24/2020 (Permalink)

Businesses, big or small, face a variety of hazards every day.  Natural hazards like floods, tornadoes, and earthquakes, health hazards such as widespread and serious illnesses like the flu, human-caused hazards including accidents and acts of violence, and technology-related hazards such as power outages and equipment failure. 

The SERVPRO Emergency Ready Profile can help business leaders not only prepare for some of these hazards, but what do afterwards in order to get back to business quickly.

Knowing what to do is the key to timely mitigation and can help minimize damage to your business.  

It is a FREE assessment of your facility or space.

It details the location of valve shut-offs, priority areas and contact information.

It is a FREE guide that you and your Marketing Representative compile to contain critical information needed in the event of an emergency.  

It establishes your local SERVPRO of La Crosse County as your disaster mitigation and restoration provider.

Give your #WeAreLocal GREEN Team a call to get started 608-786-0387

Commercial Cleaning From Your #wearelocal GREEN Team

8/24/2020 (Permalink)

The same people you trust after a fire or water disaster, can also keep your business clean year-round.

Why is that?

The specialists at SERVPRO of La Crosse are trained in every category of clean.

From mold remediation to the cleaning of carpets, upholstery to general and routine cleaning - including floors, tiles, partition walls, internal walls, suspended ceilings, lighting, furniture, window cleaning, and deep cleans of washing facilities-- SERVPRO of La Crosse is here to help protect every square foot of your business!

Our comprehensive system takes the task of maintaining a clean work facility out of your hands, allowing you to work more effectively on your business.

Need an extra pair of hands? 

SERVPRO of La Crosse is your #wearelocal #1GREENteam to call in 24/7/365

 608.786.0387

Power Outages are No Laughing Matter in La Crosse County

8/24/2020 (Permalink)

Even though extended power outages are something we don't typically see in the La Crosse area, they happen and when they do, it may impact the whole community and the economy.  A power outage happens when electrical power goes out unexpectedly.  It can disrupt communications, water, and transportation.  It can cause retail businesses, grocery stores, gas stations, ATM's, banks, and other services to halt services.  Worst of all, it can prevent the use of medical devices.

  1. During an outage, its important to keep freezer and refrigerator doors closed.  A refrigerator will keep food cold for about 4 hours and a freezer will stay cold for up to 48 hours. 
  2. Maintain food supplies. 
  3. Avoid carbon monoxide poisoning by keeping generators, camp stoves, charcoal grills outdoors and up to 20 feet away from windows. 
  4. Turn off or disconnect appliances, equipment, and electronics. 
  5. Check on your neighbors, especially older adults, that can be vulnerable to extreme temperatures.  

Prepare now!  It is better to be prepared now than to be scrambling later. 

  1. Take an inventory of items that rely on electricity. 
  2. Plan for batteries and other alternatives that can meet your needs. 
  3. Sign up for local alerts and warning systems.  

If the power happens to go out, are you ready?  Let SERVPRO of La Crosse help with the cleanup.  608-786-0387

What To Do When You Notice a Mold Smell in the Workplace

8/18/2020 (Permalink)

Mold. Aspergillus. The finger of the hand points to the black fungus on the white wall. Is it mold or mildew?

As it grows, mold releases a gas with a distinctive and unpleasant odor that can linger throughout the workplace. If your business in Midway, WI, is overpowered by a mold smell, then you are advised to quickly identify the source of the problem and use a mold remediation team as a solution.

Is It Mold or Mildew?

It can be challenging to identify the root cause of the odor and determine whether you have a mold or mildew problem on your hands. Generally, a mildew smell is not nearly as strong as the odor produced by mold. The best course of action is to find the source of the smell, which may originate in a range of places, including:

  • Air vents
  • Insulation
  • Leaky pipes or ducts
  • Wood furniture

A professional can help you identify the cause of the odor, and this allows you to determine the removal plan. It is always advised to get an expert opinion beforehand to make sure that you are properly managing the infestation.

What If No Mold Is Visible?
Mold is not always growing out in the open, so it can be hard to trace a mold smell. In fact, spores tend to circulate in areas that are not openly visible, such as air ducts. Professional removal teams use technology such as infrared cameras to detect mold growth in walls, insulation, and air ducts. Once it is clear that an infestation is present, the team can move onto thoroughly cleaning your workplace. The best way to avoid a noxious fungus smell is to make sure your business is clean and dry. Cleaning up wet spots and regularly checking the duct system are just a couple of ways to prevent a harmful infestation from intruding on your business. Of course, nothing is unavoidable, and if you do notice a mold smell, it is highly recommended that you contact a professional removal team to determine the proper course of action.

3 Things To Understand About Secondary Story Overflows

8/18/2020 (Permalink)

Leakage of water from a toilet due to blockage of the pipe Overflowing toilet in New Amsterdam, WI

Three Things To Understand About Your Multi-Level Issue

When an upstairs toilet overflows, your business could incur more widespread damage than a simple bathroom fix. The water could move through walls and the ceiling, impacting locations below. This sewer damage is highly problematic, making repairs more expensive and time-consuming. Proprietors in New Amsterdam, WI, will want to act quickly to mitigate the trouble.

1. Moisture Quickly Spreads
As the water rushes out of the toilet, it begins to move throughout the bathroom. It could create puddles. As it sits, it absorbs into grout, walls and baseboards. These spots become access points to other rooms, especially downstairs. It doesn't take days. It takes minutes. Shut off the main water line, and call a water and sewage company to assess the building. The specialists can determine the extent of the destruction.

2. Extraction Is Absolutely Necessary
Porous materials impacted by sewer damage play host to microbes such as fungus and bacteria. These organisms easily penetrate deep into items. Commercial cleaners such as bleach cannot reach the entire infestation; therefore, you cannot rely on a can of chemicals and some towels to remedy everything. Instead, you'll want to begin removing anything that is overly saturated. This includes ceiling structures, drywall and flooring.

3. Dry It Up Before Your Disinfect
Turn your efforts to airing out the facility. You'll want to concentrate on removing excess wetness caused by the flooded toilet. Run dehumidifiers around the clock. Fans may also be used. Test the rooms before beginning cleanup. Sanitize everything with a thorough scrubbing. Apply antimicrobial spray as well. Once this is completed, reconstruction may begin on all levels.
Sewer damage can easily migrate from one space to another; thus, floods upstairs should be treated with care. Look over the entire property, up and down. If liquid made it below, you'll have to remediate there as well. It's important to contain, tear out and dry as soon as possible.

Can You Get Rid of Mold in Your Home?

8/7/2020 (Permalink)

Mold growth on wood Mold damage in Onalaska, WI

Tiny mold spores live just about everywhere in your home in Onalaska, WI. They only become a problem when other factors enters the equation to stimulate mold growth. If you suspect mold in your home, call a mold remediation specialist right away. Total removal of mold spores is not possible, but experts can mitigate the problem and reduce the chances of mold returning.

What Conditions Encourage Mold?

Water is the key ingredient needed for mold spores to multiply. Any confined area that accumulates excessive moisture is especially susceptible to mold. In addition to major water events, conditions that encourage the growth of mold include dripping pipes, wet clothes that aren't properly dried and bathroom flooring that isn't wiped down after showering. Mold particularly likes absorbent materials, such as carpeting and drywall.
High humidity is the other condition that encourages mold growth. When the air fills with moisture, especially in damp places like bathrooms, mold is more likely to thrive. Dark, damp basements are also places to look for mold. Run the bathroom fan after each shower, and use a dehumidifier in the basement.

What Will a Mold Specialist Do?
A qualified expert knows how mold grows and spreads. The professional will inspect the property to determine the cause of the problem. If you have suffered significant water damage, the source of the water must be stopped right away and the entire area must be dried using industrial equipment.
Mold is contained using negative air chambers, filters, and scrubbers. This helps to reduce the chance of mold spreading to other areas. Special cleaning techniques and antimicrobial treatments are applied to clean all surfaces and remove the mold colonies. Any unsalvageable materials, such as carpeting and furniture, are discarded to discourage the growth of further mold colonies.
Mold growth isn't something to take lightly. Call an expert right away to handle the mold in your home.

Reasons You Shouldn't Ignore Black Water

8/7/2020 (Permalink)

Technician with shovel on hand and full of mud Storm damage in West Salem, WI

Blackwater is an extremely dangerous biohazard that can enter your home as a result of sewage backflow. Because it comes from sewage, it often contains human feces, grease, pathogens, and much more. These types of sewage floods are best left to the professionals, but you can still arm yourself with the knowledge to protect against them. Read on to help keep your home in West Salem, WI, safe.

Types of Dangerous Water

Water damage can be classified into three separate categories based on the types of contaminants that could be present in the water:

Category 1: The water in this type of flood is safe enough for human and animal consumption. However, it could become more lethal if it makes contact with other materials or surfaces.
Category 2: This type of water has suffered some degree of contamination. It can be compared to dirty water from a dishwasher or washing machine.
Category 3: This is the most dangerous type of floodwater. It's commonly referred to as black water or sewage and poses a significant health risk to humans.

Prevent Category 3 Flooding
Much like any other type of biohazard, you definitely do not want black water in your home. Water damage of any kind can lead to dangerous mold growth if it isn't taken care of as soon as possible. Because a black water flood requires professional remediation, your best course of action is to prevent it from happening in the first place.
Inspect household appliances, such as dishwashers and washing machines, regularly to ensure they're working properly. You should also inspect the pipes in your home to make sure they aren't leaking. Take the time to clean out your gutters often as well. Finally, you should always make sure to turn off the faucets in your sinks, showers, and bathtubs when they aren't being used.
Remember, you should never attempt to handle Category 3 water damage on your own. Contact storm remediation professionals to ensure the job is performed safely and thoroughly.

Cleaning Smoke & Soot Damage From Puff-Back in West Salem Home

8/5/2020 (Permalink)

White wall covered in dark spots Heavy fuel oil damage after a puff-back.

This home in West Salem, Wisconsin suffered from a fuel oil “puff back”, which is literally an explosion of un-burned oil in the combustion chamber of an oil-fired furnace.  It sends out heavy, oily, black soot through the ventilation system and into every room in the house. All belongings were covered and needed to be restored.  It is a devastating experience, but SERVPRO of La Crosse County works hard to clean and inventory all of the content. We are able to remove the oily soot, and even the smell from the home.  Our goal is always to make your home “Like it never even happened.”

What To Expect:

When we visit your home after any type of fire loss, smoke, or soot damage, we will scope the affected areas to determine the extent of the loss. Our team will then always pretest affected surfaces to determine the type of smoke, and which products will help us recover the area most effectively. We have the equipment, expertise, and experience to restore your home. If a fire has damaged your home, call us right away at 608-786-0387.  SERVPRO of La Crosse County will treat you and your family with empathy and respect, and your property with care. 

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?

Call Us Today – 608-786-0387