Recent Posts

TIPS TO AVOID BURSTING PIPES

2/25/2019 (Permalink)

      7 HELPFUL TIPS TO AVOID BURSTING

                        PIPES THIS WINTER

Outdoors Tips:

  • Wrap outside faucets.
  • Caulk around pipes where they enter into the house.
  • Disconnect garden hoses.
  • Drain in-ground sprinkler systems*

Indoor Tips:

  • Let a stream of water run if the temperature dips below freezing.
  • Open cupboard doors in the kitchen and bathrooms.
  • Shut off and drain your water system if you are leaving the house for several days.

SERVPRO of Bemidji, Grand Rapids & Hibbing is here to help in case of a pipe that bursts or lines that freeze. Our crews are ready 24 x 7 no matter how big or how small our SERVPRO team handles them all, give us a call!

* Check manufacturer's instructions for the best way to do this. 

ICE DAM: What are They?

1/18/2019 (Permalink)

Since You Asked

Betsy from Grand Rapids asked: What exactly are ice dams?

That seems simple enough to answer, an ice dam is formed when you have a lot of heat loss through your roof causing snow to melt and run down, but then freezes as it gets close to the edge of the roof. This can be seen by blocks of ice on the edge of a roof, or large ice sickles that hang from the roof. Easy enough to explain, however they can cause big problems.

When you get an ice dam the snow that continues to melt will get trapped by the dam and have no place to go it can then back up under your shingles causing a leak. Many roof leaks in the late winter early spring are from ice dams.

To prevent ice dams, the first step is to limit the amount of heat loss through your roof. Making sure you are insulated well enough is key. The next is to get rid of the snow on the bottom of the roof before it turns to ice. You can use roof rakes or brooms, but make sure you are safe on a slipper roof. If you already have ice making channels through the ice dam allows the water behind the dam to drain off the roof. You can hose tap water on a warm day to cut through the ice. Work upward from the lower edge of the dam. However, the channel will become ineffective within days and is only a temporary solution to ice dam damage.

Document & Content Restoration: Installment 1

1/3/2019 (Permalink)

One stressful situation that any business can find themselves in after a loss is the damage documents and contents, but rest assured that here at SERVPRO of Aitkin, Carlton & West St. Louis Counties we are here to help. With our highly trained staff will work diligently to salvage as much of your documents and contents as possible. We have many techniques to ensure this happens Three techniques we could use are freeze drying, ultra-sonic cleaning, and data recovery.

When important documents get wet in a loss we have a crucial process to save them called freeze drying. Freeze drying is a process that involves using specialized freezing chambers to dry the documents. It is important that the documents remain wet until we can get them in to the chamber. So, the sooner we get to them the more likely we are to save them.

To be continued with Ultra-sonic cleaning and data recovery in the next post!

Document & Content Restoration: Installment 2

1/3/2019 (Permalink)

Another awesome technique that we can use is ultra-sonic cleaning. This technique is typically performed after a fire loss but can be utilized in other situations. Ultra-sonic cleaning is performed using three different specialized tanks to pre-wash your contents, agitate using ultra-sonic vibrations, and rinse contents using ionized water. This process gets in to those hard to reach nooks and crannies leaving your contents Debris free.

With the rise of technology, a lot of your information might be stored on your computer systems. If these systems are compromised all is not lost, here at SERVPRO of Aitkin, Carlton & West St. Louis Counties we have partnered with a local company who specializes in the repair and recover of your important data.

The utilization of freeze drying to save your paper documents, the ultra-sonic process to clean your contents, and the Data recovery for your electronic information. You can rest assured that in the chaos of whatever tragedy might rear its ugly SERVPRO of Aitkin, Carlton & West St. Louis Counties is always here to help.

Do You Have An Odor You Can't Get Rid Of?

12/27/2018 (Permalink)

Do you have an odor from smoke damage or something else in your home? Here at SERVPRO of Aitkin, Carlton & West St. Louis Counties we have equipment to help eliminate that smell. Our ozone generator that generates ozone. Also, we have a hydroxyl generator which is an alternative method for the deodorization process.

The ozone generator is a machine that creates ozone by adding an extra oxygen molecule to the stable breathable oxygen. This creates a less stable compound known as ozone. This gas isn’t something that you should be breathing. If we must use this solution for your odor the home must be unoccupied. This process usually takes 24 hours to do its job. After the ozone has had its time to work its magic we completely air out the structure before it can be occupied again.

The hydroxyl generator is a safer alternative method we use when the structure can’t be emptied of all residents. This method uses UV light to create a hydroxyl radical that reacts with the pollutants and destroys them. This method isn’t as fast as the ozone generator and usually take 4 to 5 days to get the job done.

After SERVPRO of Aitkin, Carlton & West St. Louis Counties has removed the source of the odor, we utilize both extremely powerful methods to aid in the deodorization process to get your home back to a pleasant smell.

If you have a smell that you can't get rid of give SERVPRO of Aitkin, Carlton & West St. Louis Counties a call at (218) 879-6141

Funky Smell Have You Confused

12/27/2018 (Permalink)

Do you have a strange odor that you suspect might be mold, but don’t have any visible mold? SERVPRO of Aitkin, Carlton & West St. Louis Counties has the test for you! This test is an air quality test used to test the large and the small particulates is the air. Giving us an accurate reading of the particle count and giving us the information to know if you have mold or if something else is causing that funky odor.

The air quality test is preformed using a meter to test particulates larger then small micron and smaller than 10 microns. This machine is then placed in various areas around the house to include the affected areas and an unaffected area. Also, it will be placed outside to get a base line for the affected areas. Once the test has been completed results are interpreted by one of our highly trained technicians to determine what the possible causes are. Then one of our production management staff will come up with recommendations on what your next steps might be to solve the issue.

So, if you think you smell mold and don't have visible mold then you might want to call SERVPRO of Aitkin, Carlton & West St. Louis Counties today at (218) 879-6141!

Have Mold and Need to Know What Kind

12/27/2018 (Permalink)

Do you have mold in your house and you want to know the exact name and spore count of the mold you may have? SERVPRO of Aitkin, Carlton & West St. Louis Counties has a solution for you! This can be done by preforming a settling test.

The settling test is the most common and most accurate test when it comes to mold. The settling test is performed by placing settle plates on all affected levels and outside for a base line. The plates are placed for one to two hours than sealed labeled and sent off to an independent lab. The lab than incubates the dishes for 5-7 days. This allow the lab to identify the microorganisms using a microscope.

If the curiosity has the best of you contact SERVPRO of Aitkin, Carlton & West St. Louis Counties at (218) 879-6141 and get your settling test done today.

Smoke Damage

3/27/2018 (Permalink)

Smoke damage can be very detrimental to your health and your property. The smoke can leave discoloration, corrosion, and odor all over your household items. It also can affect your health and you should stay away from the area until professionals have cleared it out and it is safe to go back inside. Smoke damage can happen to your property even when it’s not your property affected by the fire. If your neighbor has a fire and your windows were open, or if there is a wild fire in a nearby field; you can still get smoke damage. Our team of experts at SERVPRO Aitkin, Carlton & West St. Louis Counties has the training and equipment to clean and restore your home from any type of smoke damage. We'll treat you and your property with the respect and care it deserves!

Sever Weather Part 2

3/20/2018 (Permalink)

Emergency Supply Kit: Having an emergency kit can be a life saver. Most emergency management agencies recommend having supplies for up to three days. The following is a list you can use as a guideline:

  • Water – 1 gallon per person per day
  • Food – non-perishable
  • Manual can opener
  • Battery operated radio, preferably a weather radio
  • Flashlight
  • Extra batteries for radio and flashlight
  • First Aid kit
  • Safety Whistle to signal help
  • Clothing, blankets
  • Dust mask or bandanas
  • Plastic sheeting, garbage bags, and duct tape
  • Wrench or other tools to shut off utilities
  • Hygiene items
  • Important documents. (Copy of insurance policy, bank account info, identification, etc.)
  • Fire extinguisher
  • Matches in waterproof case
  • Cash

Make A Family Plan: A family plan can be essential to survival during sever weather. A family plan can allow everyone to know where to go and what to do in case of an emergency. These plans should include designated rooms in the home to meet in case of severe weather. Also, they should include a designated spot outside of the home to meet up at incase of separation.

Sever Weather Part 1

3/15/2018 (Permalink)

Severe weather is unpredictable and business SERVPRO Aitkin, Carlton & West St. Louis Counties wants you to be safe no matter the season! Below are some severe weather readiness tips to help guide you, no matter what type of disaster you may encounter.

Weather Radios: With all of today’s technology it still can’t stand up to a battery powered weather radio during an emergency. Mobile devices maybe what most people use today for checking weather updates, but the towers that send out the signals required for the devices to function can be damages or congested during times of emergency. A weather radio with fully charged batteries can provide Families with more reliable alerts and updates. These radios have the capability of receiving special frequencies for the for special radio stations that provide warnings for all hazards. Look for our next blog for tips on emergency supply kits and making a family plan.