Recent Posts

Storm Safety

9/8/2020 (Permalink)

Home with storm damage Home with storm damage.

National Preparedness Month is sponsored by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) within the Department of Homeland Security. For the entire month of September, this initiative encourages people to take steps to prepare for emergencies in their homes, businesses, schools, and communities.

The devastating wildfires, hurricanes and earthquakes in 2017 and 2018 show the importance of preparing for disasters. Seeing that these disasters can strike in any shape or form at any given time, it is important to prepare in advance to help yourself and your community. Ask your community how you can volunteer. 

Business also need to be prepared. Ask us about out Emergency Ready Program. It is imperative to have all the shut off information to your water, electric, and gas handy in case of an emergency. SERVPRO of Sumter can help with all that. We even have an app you can download so all the information can be at your fingertips. 

Hurricane safety

9/8/2020 (Permalink)

Inside after a storm damaged the roof. Inside after a storm damaged the roof.

How to Prepare for a Hurricane
Hurricanes are massive storm systems that form over ocean water and often move toward land.
Threats from hurricanes include high winds, heavy rainfall, storm surge, coastal and inland flooding,
rip currents, and tornadoes. The heavy winds of hurricanes can cause damage or destroy homes,
buildings, and roads, as well as cause power, water, and gas outages. These effects can injure or kill
people, disrupt transportation, and pollute drinking water. Hurricanes cause deaths and injuries
primarily from drowning, wind, and wind-borne debris. The impact from hurricanes can extend from
the coast to several hundred miles inland. To find your risk, visit FEMA’s “Know Your Risk Map.”
Be better prepared for this hurricane season, and learn more at ready.gov/prepare.
Now/Prepare
Sign up for local alerts and
warnings. Monitor local news and
weather reports.
Prepare to evacuate by testing your
emergency communication plan(s),
learning evacuation routes, having a
place to stay, and packing a “go bag.”
Stock emergency supplies.
Protect your property by installing
sewer back flow valves, anchoring
fuel tanks, reviewing insurance
policies, and cataloging belongings.
Collect and safeguard critical
financial, medical, educational, and
legal documents and records.
During/Survive
Follow guidance from local
authorities.
If advised to evacuate, grab your
“go bag” and leave immediately.
For protection from high winds,
stay away from windows and seek
shelter on the lowest level in an
interior room.
Move to higher ground if there
is flooding or a flood warning.
Turn Around Don’t Drown.®
Never walk or drive on flooded
roads or through water.
Call 9-1-1 if you are in life threatening
danger.
After/Be Safe
Return to the area only after
authorities say it is safe to do so.
Do not enter damaged buildings
until they are inspected by qualified
professionals.
Never walk or drive on flooded
roads or through floodwaters.
Look out for downed or unstable
trees, poles, and power lines.
Do not remove heavy debris by
yourself. Wear gloves and sturdy,
thick-soled shoes to protect your
hands and feet.
Do not drink tap water unless
authorities say it is safe.

HVAC tips to help save you money.

7/13/2020 (Permalink)

Air Handler Air handler.

Coming home to soaked carpet or ceiling damage isn’t fun. But it happens more often than you think. Here are some of the most common reasons your HVAC unit will leak inside your home. 

  • FILTERS

    Air Filters are easy to forget about. The average homeowner only changes their air filter 4 times a year, and if you forget…. bad things can happen. 

  • LOW REFRIGERANT

    A low refrigerant level can also cause your unit to freeze. Low refrigerant could be the sign of a refrigerant leak in your HVAC unit. 

  • CLOGGED DRAIN LINE

     Your drain pan sits under your unit and catches and excess water created by your HVAC unit. If this pan accumulates dust or algae, it can cause the drain to be clogged. A clogged drain line will cause your pan to over flow which means dripping water and water damage.

  • DISCONNECTED DRAIN LINE

Each HVAC unit has a drain line. Sometimes drain lines become disconnected and you start to notice puddles of water or water damage coming from your unit. 

The first thing you need to do is shut off your HVAC unit if any of this is happening then you want to call your service man to locate and fix the problem. After this has been done it is time for SERVPRO Professionals to come assess your damage from the water and dry your home properly. 

More than just a fire.

7/7/2020 (Permalink)

Burned wall from a fire. Burned wall from a fire.

Fires often trigger damage in a way homeowners do not expect: significant water damage. Whether during the efforts to put the fire out or leaks caused by the heat, fire can directly or indirectly cause your home to take on large amounts of water unexpectedly.  

Fast response after the fire out is very important. Your furniture and belongs need immediate attention if they have been saturated with water and debris from the extinguishing of the fire.

Growth, swelling of wood, and rust are some of the things that can happen to your belongings after they have been through a fire. 

Remember the first 48 hours after a fire damage can make the difference between restoring versus replacing. SERVPRO Professionals can help prevent fire damage from creating long-term affects. 

Ozone and what it can do for you.

7/7/2020 (Permalink)

Ozone machine with contents. Ozone machine with contents.

Ozone is a colorless unstable toxic gas with a pungent odor and powerful oxidizing properties, formed from oxygen by electrical discharges or ultraviolet light. It differs from normal oxygen (O2) in having three atoms in its molecule (O3). Ozone treatments are one of the best tools for removing odor caused by smoke damage. Ozone works to remove odors by chemically changing the structure of the molecules in the smoke that are creating the smell. The extra oxygen atom attaches itself to the other molecules to create a new molecule that is non-offensive—and non-smelly—in a process called oxidation. As a gas, ozone can clean anywhere air is allowed to flow. That’s one of the features that makes it so effective in removing odors that other cleaning techniques just can’t touch.

Back to worshipping faster.

6/29/2020 (Permalink)

Mess made by water damage Fallen ceiling and insulation from water damage.

Your place of worship is your congregation's shelter, helping shield them from the storms of life. But if life's literal storms damage your place of worship or if your cleaning needs go beyond the reach of your staff, call your local SERVPRO Franchise Professionals. 

No stain is too small and no storm damage is too large for the SERVPRO System. SERVPRO Professionals have the training, experience, resources and equipment to restore and clean places of worship quickly, helping make it "Like it never even happened."

Catastrophic Storm and Major Event Response.

The SERVPRO Disaster Recovery Team can provide help whether you're dealing with a tornado, hurricane, blizzard or flood. The SERVPRO System has a network of strategically positioned storm teams on standby should a disaster strike near you.

Keep your carpet looking new longer with proper cleaning.

6/29/2020 (Permalink)

Brown carpet in a room Carpet in an room

Proper carpet care can be a complicated part of commercial cleaning and facility management. A ton of cleaning choices are available, and deciding what carpet cleaning process or chemical to use can be a confusing task.

Up-to-date vacuums can reduce cleaning times.In some environments, traditional upright vacuums cannot be used efficiently due to furniture and other impediments.

Carpeting should be vacuumed as much as possible. Foot traffic and airborne impurities like dust, pollen and other contaminants end up in carpet fiber along with hair, dander, skin and dust mites.

Provide manual spotting tools to employees so that they can perform regular spot removal.

Look for certified products when making the change to sustainable carpet cleaning. Just because a product or service is green certified, that doesn’t mean it won’t damage carpet materials during the cleaning process.

Routine maintenance is the key to carpet appearance and longevity.

Lightning and Thunder facts.

6/29/2020 (Permalink)

Thunder Facts 

  Thunder is the sound caused by lightning.

  • The intense heat from lightning causes the surrounding air to rapidly expand and create a sonic wave that you hear as thunder.

  • The average temperature of lightning is around 20000 °C (36000 °F).

  • The sound of thunder can be anything from a loud crack to a low rumble.

  • Light travels faster than sound so we see lightning before we hear thunder.

  • The closer you are, the shorter the gap between the lightning and thunder.

  • The speed of sound is around 767 miles per hour (1,230 kilometres per hour).

  • The speed of light is around 669600000 miles per hour (1080000000 kilometres per hour).

  • Thunder is difficult to hear at distances over 12 miles (20 kilometres).

  • Thousands of years ago philosophers such as Aristotle believed that thunder was caused by the collision of clouds.

  • Astraphobia is the fear of thunder and lightning.

Tornado Season Is Upon Us

6/23/2020 (Permalink)

Tornadoes can destroy buildings, flip cars, and create deadly flying debris. Tornadoes are violently rotating columns of air that extend from a thunderstorm to the ground. Tornadoes can:

  • Happen anytime and anywhere;

  • Bring intense winds, over 200 MPH; and

  • Look like funnels.

 IF YOU ARE UNDER A TORNADO WARNING, FIND SAFE SHELTER RIGHT AWAY
  • If you can safely get to a sturdy building, then do so immediately.
  • Go to a safe room, basement, or storm cellar.
  • If you are in a building with no basement, then get to a small interior room on the lowest level.
  • Stay away from windows, doors, and outside walls.
  • Do not get under an overpass or bridge. You’re safer in a low, flat location.
  • Watch out for flying debris that can cause injury or death.
  • Use your arms to protect your head and neck.

HOW TO STAY SAFE WHEN A TORNADO THREATENS

WHAT TO DO NOW: Prepare

  • Know your area’s tornado risk. In the U.S., the Midwest and the Southeast have a greater risk for tornadoes.
  • Know the signs of a tornado, including a rotating, funnel-shaped cloud; an approaching cloud of debris; or a loud roar—similar to a freight train.
  • Sign up for your community’s warning system. The Emergency Alert System (EAS) and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Weather Radio also provide emergency alerts. If your community has sirens, then become familiar with the warning tone.
  • Pay attention to weather reports. Meteorologists can predict when conditions might be right for a tornado.
  • Identify and practice going to a safe shelter in the event of high winds, such as a safe room built using FEMA criteria or a storm shelter built to ICC 500 standards. The next best protection is a small, interior, windowless room on the lowest level of a sturdy building.
  • Consider constructing your own safe room that meets FEMA or ICC 500 standards.

 WHAT TO DO DURING: Survive

  • Immediately go to a safe location that you identified.
  • Take additional cover by shielding your head and neck with your arms and putting materials such as furniture and blankets around you.
  • Listen to EAS, NOAA Weather Radio, or local alerting systems for current emergency information and instructions.
  • Do not try to outrun a tornado in a vehicle.
  • If you are in a car or outdoors and cannot get to a building, cover your head and neck with your arms and cover your body with a coat or blanket, if possible.

WHAT TO DO AFTER: Be Safe

  • Keep listening to EAS, NOAA Weather Radio, and local authorities for updated information.
  • If you are trapped, cover your mouth with a cloth or mask to avoid breathing dust. Try to send a text, bang on a pipe or wall, or use a whistle instead of shouting.
  • Stay clear of fallen power lines or broken utility lines.
  • Do not enter damaged buildings until you are told that they are safe.
  • Save your phone calls for emergencies. Phone systems are often down or busy after a disaster. Use text messaging or social media to communicate with family and friends.
  • Be careful during clean-up. Wear thick-soled shoes, long pants, and work gloves.

Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned – a defensive cleaning program

6/18/2020 (Permalink)

Table tent signs describing the Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned program on top of a wooden table. Our defensive cleaning program gives your business a way forward by providing your employees and customers ongoing safety and assuredness.

Let us help you get back to business

As our communities re-open, we’re all moving back toward a new kind of normal. The expectations of visitors, customers, and employees who come into our establishments have evolved, and staying safe and well is a top concern. The global COVID-19 pandemic has changed what it means to be clean, and we’ve developed a program to help your business meet the new higher standard of clean that is now expected.

Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned is a defensive cleaning program we’re offering to businesses and commercial locations to address the current COVID-19 pandemic. This proactive viral pathogen cleaning program goes well beyond janitorial or carpet cleaning. By choosing Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned, you, your employees, your customers, and your community can rest assured that you’ve selected a higher cleaning standard – you are Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned.