Recent Posts

Electrical Safety

2/22/2021 (Permalink)

Plug going into wall outlet Be fire smart with electricity in your home

Electricity helps make our lives easier but there can be times when we take its power and its potential for fire-related hazards for granted.  According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), there are approximately 45,000 home electrical fires each year with half of them involving home wiring or lighting equipment.  Peak months for electrical fire deaths are November through March with peak times between midnight and 8:00am.  The following are a few tips to be fire smart with electricity in your home:

  • Plug only one heat-producing appliance (like a coffee maker, space heater, or microwave) directly into a wall outlet at a time.
  • Never use an extension cord with a heat-producing appliance.
  • Extension cords should only be used temporarily.  Have an electrician install wall outlets where you need them.
  • Major appliances should be plugged directly into a wall outlet.  Do not use extension cords or plug strips.

If you experience fire damage from an electrical fire, SERVPRO of Holland/W. Ottawa County is Here to Help!  Call us today, 616-396-8180

Is Your Business Ready for a Disaster?

2/20/2021 (Permalink)

SERVPRO Emergency READY Profile Logo Is your business "Ready for whatever happens"?

As many as 50% of businesses may never recover following a disaster.  Of the businesses that survive, an overwhelming majority of them had a preparedness plan in place.

By developing a SERVPRO Emergency READY Profile for your business, you minimize business interruption by having an immediate plan of action.  Knowing what to do and what to expect in advance is the key to timely mitigation and can help minimize how water and fire damage affect your business.

Preparation is key for making it through any size disaster, whether it's a small water leak, a large fire, or a flood.  No one ever plans on a disaster, but if it does happen, you want to be prepared, and the best time for planning is before disaster strikes.  The SERVPRO Emergency READY Profile is designed to serve as a quick reference of important building and contact information so you can stay calm when damage does occur.

A non-profit organization in Holland, MI shared their experience with SERVPRO of Holland/W. Ottawa County, "We had SERVPRO come out last year to do an assessment of our new building for advanced preparation in the event of an emergency.  What a thorough job they did!  We learned so much through this assessment; we now know where the shut off valves are for our water, gas, and electricity.  Partnering with SERVPRO was one small thing we did for our organization that really helped us prepare well.  Thank you, SERVPRO!"

Call SERPVRO of Holland/W. Ottawa County today to get started, 616-396-8180

Content Restoration Cleaning After Fire Damage

2/19/2021 (Permalink)

Our Content Restoration Specialist using sponge to clean soot from antique baby crib SERVPRO of Holland/W. Ottawa County takes pride in restoring your belongings

Fire damage, including smoke and soot, affects not only the structure of your house but also your belongings.  SERVPRO of Holland/W. Ottawa County Professionals understand your family's furniture, clothing, keepsakes, and other belongings are the things that make your house a home.

Our expertise and "restore" versus "replace" mentality can help you save money while preserving precious keepsakes that can't be replaced, such as the antique baby crib in the photo.  We pretest your belongings to determine what items can be restored to pre-fire condition and use several methods of cleaning, including:

  • Dry Cleaning - Used for cleaning light residues or to pre-clean prior to wet cleaning.
  • Wet Cleaning - An effective cleaning technique for removing moderate to heavy residues.
  • Spray and Wipe - Effective for items that cannot withstand wet cleaning.
  • Foam Cleaning - Used for upholstery fabrics that might shrink or bleed if wet cleaned.
  • Abrasive Cleaning - Involves agitation of the surface being cleaned.
  • Immersion Cleaning - Contents are dipped into a bath of the cleaning product.

If you have questions or need help restoring your belongings, call SERVPRO of Holland/W. Ottawa County today, 616-396-8180

Hidden Moisture

2/12/2021 (Permalink)

Moisture meter reading wet and dry SERVPRO of Holland/W. Ottawa County has the tools to find hidden moisture

Many large scale commercial facilities experience water damage on a regular basis.  This can range from a minor roof leak to severe flooding.  If you have ever experienced water damage, you know that the restoration process can sometimes be tricky.  One of the most important factors of water damage restoration is ensuring that everything is dried properly.  A structure that isn't fully dry and harboring moisture can easily generate mold growth and cause the structure itself to break down.  Our technicians have experience drying commercial facilities and understand the science behind proper water damage restoration.  We also have equipment such as moisture detectors/meters and thermal imaging to help identify hidden moisture and prevent further damage to your facility.

If you experience water damage in your business, SERVPRO of Holland/W. Ottawa County is Here to Help, (616) 396-8180

3 Causes of Winter Home Water Damage

2/9/2021 (Permalink)

Ice formed on outside of home due to water loss SERVPRO of Holland/W. Ottawa County is Here to Help you with your winter water damage

Water damage can occur at any time of year.  Cold temperatures and inclement weather can combine to trigger winter weather damage such as leaks, bursts, and water intrusion.  To reduce seasonal risks, be aware of the following common sources of water damage in winter:

  • Frozen Pipes - ice forming in a water supply line can cause internal pressure and rupture pipes, releasing hundreds of gallons per hour.  Make sure to install pipe insulation on all supply pipes potentially exposed to freezing temperatures such as in the crawl space or attic.  When a hard freeze is forecasted, open faucets slightly to drip to relieve pressure if pipes freeze.  If water flow stops during extreme cold, assume a pipe has frozen.
  • Ice Dams - when the underside of the upper portion of the roof is disproportionately warm, snow melts faster.  Water runs down to the colder portion of the roof then freezes again, obstructing flow of runoff into gutters.  Pooling water then seeps through shingles and sub-roofing and causes water damage in the attic.  Uneven roof warming is caused by excess attic warmth.  To prevent ice dams, make sure the attic is properly ventilated to remain uniformly cold.  Seal ceiling cracks, gaps and other openings with caulk to prevent unnecessary heat loss into the attic.
  • Snow Melt - melting snow around the perimeter of the house can saturate deep into the soil and leak through the foundation and basement walls.  Make sure to shovel any accumulated snow away from the house before melting occurs.  Seal cracks and gaps in the basement wall and, if you don't have one, install a sump pump.

Has your home been affected by winter weather damage?  Call SERVPRO of Holland/W. Ottawa County, we are Here to Help, (616) 396-8180

Technology to Find Hidden Moisture

2/9/2021 (Permalink)

Infrared photo of ceiling Thermal Imaging helps SERVPRO of Holland/W. Ottawa County find hidden moisture

Sometimes you might now know exactly what has been affected when you have a water leak.  That is where thermal imaging comes in handy, showing the areas that are not seen as wet with the naked eye.  

A thermal imaging camera can detect slight temperature differences inside your home.  It detects where moisture has infiltrated walls, carpeting, etc.  The camera creates a visual map so that our technicians can pinpoint the location of leaks and moisture.  Brighter colors (red, orange, and yellow) indicate warmer temperatures (more heat and infrared radiation emitted) while purples and dark blue/black indicate cooler temperatures (less heat and infrared radiation emitted).  The thermal imaging camera detects the radiation in a way similar to the way an ordinary camera detects visible light.  It works even in total darkness because ambient light level does not matter.

Call SERVPRO of Holland/W. Ottawa County at (616) 396-8180 for your emergency water damage cleanup.  We are Here to Help 24/7 to find that hidden moisture

Fire Extinguisher Tips for the Workplace

2/7/2021 (Permalink)

Woman using fire extinguisher to put out fire SERVPRO of Holland/W. Ottawa County can help after a fire

The most common emergency small businesses need to plan for, according to OSHA, is a fire.  Fire extinguishers can be invaluable tools to help fight smaller fires in the workplace.

It is extremely important for employees to know to use an extinguisher properly and also know how to accurately assess fire situations.

The PASS method is a simple technique to remember how to properly use a fire extinguisher:

  • P - Pull the pin on the extinguisher
  • A - Aim the hose nozzle low toward the base of the fire
  • S - Squeeze the handle to release the extinguishing agent
  • S - Sweep the nozzle from side to side at the base of the flames until extinguished

Fire extinguishers are meant to handle only small fires.  If a fire becomes too large, or the environment becomes too dangerous, employees should know when and how to evacuate the area; and if appropriate, sound the fire alarm or call the fire department immediately.

SERVPRO of Holland/W. Ottawa County is available 24/7 if your business incurs damage from a fire.  Call us at (616) 396-8180, we are Here to Help!

Winter Safety Tips

2/5/2021 (Permalink)

Woman sitting in chair with space heater SERVPRO of Holland/W. Ottawa County is Here to Help 24/7

Did you know that half of all home heating fires occur in December, January and February?  1 in every 7 home fires and 1 in every 5 home fire deaths involves heating equipment.  The following are a few tips from the U.S. Fire Administration to help prevent you from becoming a part of the statistic:

  • Have a qualified professional clean and inspect your chimney and vents every year.
  • Store cooled ashes in a tightly covered metal container and keep it outside at least 10 feet from your home and any nearby buildings.
  • Plug only 1 heat-producing appliance (like a space heater) into an electrical outlet at a time.
  • Keep anything that can burn at least 3 feet from any heat source like fireplaces, wood stoves, radiators or space heaters.
  • Turn space heaters off when leaving the room or going to bed.
  • Keep portable generators outside, away from windows, and as far away from your home as possible.
  • Install and test carbon monoxide alarms at least once a month.

If you have experienced a fire in your home, call SERVPRO of Holland/W. Ottawa County today, (616) 396-8180

Drying Hardwood the SERVPRO Way

2/3/2021 (Permalink)

Hardwood Floor Drying Mats Hardwood flooring potentially can be saved after water damage

There is a misconception that when hardwood flooring gets wet it must be removed because it is ruined.  Frequently, that is not the case.  SERVPRO of Holland/W. Ottawa County has the training and tools to evaluate and dry out hardwood flooring properly.  We use specialized drying mat systems and balanced dehumidification to dry hardwood quickly, saving you the time and expense of flooring replacement.  When evaluating water damaged hardwood flooring, the length of time it has been wet is a critical factor.  If the flooring dwells in water for too long, it is possible for the boards to cup, warp, and possibly break.  Rapid response is critical to the success of saving hardwood.

When we respond to a water damage with affected hardwood flooring, we perform a preliminary inspection.  Which areas are wet?  How long have they been wet?  And specifically, how wet is it?  We use a combination of flooring extraction mats, and a powerful truck-mounted extraction unit to pull as much water out of the flooring as possible.  After that is done, we set up our drying equipment, and start the drying process.  We return to the site daily to monitor the progress of the drying, using meters specially designed for hardwood.  Once the moisture level in the wood reaches an acceptable level, the hardwood flooring can be inspected by a flooring contractor.

Looking to save your hardwood flooring from water damage?  Act fast and call SERVPRO of Holland/W. Ottawa County, (616) 396-8180, we are Here to Help!

Decluttering Your Office

2/2/2021 (Permalink)

Cluttered office desk Eliminate clutter for a healthier work environment

A clean environment is a healthy environment, especially this past year.  Improve your workspace with a few tips and tricks to help you declutter your office:

  • Divide your workspace into zones.  Determine how you want and need to use the space and set up zones for your daily functions.  This will provide a foundation for a more efficient use of space.
  • Keep only what you need at arm's length.  Boxes of pens, stacks of papers, and old coffee cups need to find a new home.  Rid your desk of visual clutter.
  • Create a daily system for organization.  Consider creating hanging files or baskets.
  • Sort through your catch-all "junk" drawer.  Go through your drawers every six weeks and clear out anything that is out of place, out of date, or isn't being used.
  • Eliminate digital clutter by organizing your work inbox.  Keep icons on your desktop to a minimum.

SERVPRO of Holland/W. Ottawa County offers proactive cleanup for COVID-19 that involves facility or structure cleaning and disinfection.  Call us at (616) 396-8180, we are Here to Help!