Fall Maintenance Checklist
SERVPRO is here to help. Take the time to reduce property damage by doing these things this fall to prevent property damage. Winter is around the corner and Iowa winter temperatures are cold and harsh. Be prepared by taking a little action now by doing a little fall preventative maintenance.
Fall Maintenance Checklist
- Stow Your Mower
- Store hoses and turn off outdoor water
- Drain and turn off sprinkler systems
- Seal cracks around doors and windows
- Clean your gutters
- Inspect your roof
- Direct drainage away from your house
- Get your furnace serviced
- Prune your plants
- Look up the chimney for any blockages and check the dampers to make sure they are working
When damage happens though know we are here to help make it " Like it never even happened"
Items in an Emergency Supply Kit
SERVPRO of Ottumwa/Oskaloosa believes in being READY. One of the first ways of doing this is to have an emergency supply kit. It may be different depending on what type of disasters you are likely to encounter but this is a good starter list.
- Water ( one gallon water per person per day)
- Food ( non-perishable 3-day supply)
- Battery-operated radio, preferably a NOAA Weather Radio
- First aid kit
- Whistle to signal help
- Dust mask
- Hygiene items
- Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities
- Manual can opener
- Local Maps
- Cell phone with chargers
- Important documents
- Fire extinguisher
Put this emergency kit in a safe place that easily able to be found by all members of your family.
Water Cleanup in Ottumwa, Oskaloosa and Surrounding Area
When water damage happens in Ottumwa and Oskaloosa and the surrounding areas don't hesitate with who to call. Call SERVPRO of Iowa City/Coralville, Ottumwa/Oskaloosa, Des Moines East & SW. We are the largest SERVPRO in the state of Iowa but we are here to handle everything from a small water leak to a large flood. We can clean up fresh water from a water line break from a washing machine, dish washer, sink, refrigerator, or even water from an air conditioner condensate line. We can clean up water that has backed up from a drain line or from a sump pump that has quit working.
It is so important to call us right away. It is the water you don't see that can cause the most damage. We do free estimates and free moisture checks. Don't hesitate to call.
We have equipment loaded and ready to go and crew that works 24 hours a day to help you and respond to your loss right away to start extracting water and we will set dehumidifiers and air movers if needed as soon as we can to keep the water from wicking further into the structure.
You can trust us. With our three locations to have staff ready to help you 24 hours a day. So when you have water to clean up we are here to help you. Thank you for trusting us.
Home Contents Inventory-Why it’s Needed in Case of a Fire
Imagine having a total loss of your home due to a fire and having to recall every item that was damaged… could you do it? Would you trust yourself to remember each individual item that was in your home, especially the rarely used ones? Without a photographic memory most of us would find some difficulty with this task in an already stressful time. In the event of a fire, your insurance company will expect you to provide a list of all your personal property that was damaged. By having a pre-assembled Home Contents Inventory you can have piece-of-mind knowing that all of your contents are documented and can then be properly replaced according to your insurance policy. There are several methods to complete your Home Contents Inventory whether on paper or digitally (you can contact your local SERVPRO for a blank copy of either). You will want to make sure to list each item, its value, and include any receipts and photographs along with it. It’s a good idea to update your Home Contents Inventory list annually to include any new items you have added to the home and remove items you no longer have. Make sure to keep a copy safe in a fireproof container or safe deposit box and you can always file a copy with your insurance agent as well.
Emergency Fire Tips
In 2015 there were 1,345,500 fires reported in the United States. A structure fire was reported every 63 seconds and caused an estimated $14.3 billion in property damage. In order to ensure you and your family’s safety make sure to have an escape route in place so if a fire is discovered, you can move quickly to evacuate to your designated meeting place. The aftermath of a fire can be just as devastating as the initial event. Your local SERVPRO is here to help minimize damage and save your contents. Do not attempt to clean any electrical appliances that may have been close to a fire without consulting a repair service and make sure your restoration company is IICRC certified (all SERVPRO techs are!) There is a science behind effective cleaning. Proper methods and products must be used depending on the materials being cleaned to avoid further damage. When you choose SERVPRO, you can take comfort knowing your home and contents are in the hands of trained and caring professionals.
Emergency Water Tips
Suffering a water loss can be a hectic and stressful time. Emotions run high and often times you don’t even know where to start! The first step should always be to identify the source of incoming water then shutoff or stop the water source if possible. Next make sure to turn off all electrical appliances around the affected area to reduce electrical hazards and turn off the circuit breakers supplying electricity to the wet areas. You will want to remove excess water by mopping or blotting and make sure to never use a regular vacuum to remove water! Keep furniture safe from additional damage by placing aluminum foil or wood blocks between furniture legs and wet carpeting/flooring and make sure to call your local SERVPRO to come assess the damage and get the drying process started immediately.
Commercial Restaurant Loss & Getting you Back to Business
In 2015 Restaurants across the United States suffered a total of $116 million dollars in damages, the average loss being $23,000 (not including revenue loss from business interruption) finding prime days for damage occurred on Thursdays, Saturdays, and Sundays. We know that even the smallest losses can impact business functionality and cause revenue loss which is why we are here to get you back to business quickly! SERVPRO of Iowa City/Ottumwa/Des Moines is a large loss certified franchise with trained crews and commercial grade equipment that can respond to any size loss within hours. Regardless of the type of loss we understand the urgency of getting damages taken care of… after all an empty restaurant will COST you money. Once emergency cleaning is completed, our professional team can also offer regular maintenance services such as hood kitchen exhaust cleaning helping to ensure your restaurant is always clean and ready for business!
Disaster Preparedness for a Storm
With the fluctuations in weather, Iowa has been known to experience its fair share of severe weather and storms. Two elements that cause a thunderstorm are moisture and rapidly rising warm air, which is why severe thunderstorms occur most often in hot summer months. Thunderstorms produce lightening which can severely hurt people and damage property. Heavy rain can cause flash flooding and high winds can damage your home and blow down trees and utility poles. If you happen to get caught unprepared, storms can threaten both your property and your personal safety. Make a list of items to bring inside during a storm and ensure pets are safe and any outside housing is secured. Be sure to discuss a safety plan with your family including a safe place in your home away from windows and glass to gather during a storm. Have an emergency kit including water, non-perishable food, towels, garbage bags, and first aid kit supplies and remain indoors until after the storm has passed. After a storm you can contact your local SERVPRO 24hours a day to assist with any immediate board ups needed to protect your home.
Summer Weather and Your Appliances- Fire Hazards at Your Business and at Home
Often time people overlook the fact that summer weather can have an impact on your appliances. Extreme Heat, Summer Storms, and Power Outages can be hazardous and increase the chances of a fire in your home or business. Be cautious of over-working compressors from refrigerators and freezers, they can get extremely hot and cause a fire. Improperly used extension cords not designed to carry the proper electric load can heat quickly and also cause a fire and considerable damage. During a Summer Storm do not use electrical appliances that have been wet or potentially shorted from a lightning strike, these can be a major fire hazard. To be sure no fires have started it’s a good idea to check your appliances during and after a storm. If you experience a power outage never run cords from generators or other appliances under carpet or rugs where heat could build and cause damage or fire. Being aware of the potential hazards can save you, your business, and your home.
Extreme Heat - How it can Affect You
We all know Iowa summers bring extreme heat! Extreme heat is caused by higher than normal temperature and humidity. Children, ages infant to four are at higher risk for heat related illnesses and need extra fluids compared to adults. Symptoms of heat related illness include faintness, exhaustion, nausea, muscle spasms, and fever. In the United States more than 600 people die every year due to extreme heat. During these heat waves it’s better to stay inside and stay cool if possible. Air conditioning is the highest protective measure against extreme heat illnesses. HYDRATION is also extremely important! Drink plenty of water and if you’re in prolonged heat it’s good to utilize sports drinks to replenish your body with electrolytes. If you must be outdoors you should also avoid strenuous activities, wear lightweight light colored clothing, and take breaks in the shade or a cool environment.