Recent Posts

Cracking a water damage case

10/8/2020 (Permalink)

Cracked toilet bowl Cracked toilet bowl that was the culprit in this water damage

When SERVPRO of Columbia and Suwannee Counties receives a call about a water damage one of the first things we do is attempt to find the source of the damage if the home owner is unsure where it is coming from.

This particular case was a very easy find. Our office received a call about a water damage in Perry, Fla and we sent a team out to assess the damage and begin to work on fixing the issue.

When we arrived we noticed that the toilet bowl in the second bathroom had a huge crack and water had gone into most of the house.

Over the course of a few days, our crew was able to remove the flooring in the effected area along with some of the kitchen cabinets and began the drying process.

If you have a similar situation, feel free to give us a call at 386-754-0261.

Weather Updates

9/8/2020 (Permalink)

sign that says Hurricane with lightning bolts on black sky ARE YOU READY FOR THE STORM?

As Floridians we have learned to always be knowledgeable of ongoing weather.  From lightning to hurricanes it is always advisable to be informed at all times and know what precautions to take.   

We learn at an early age how dangerous weather can be and how to smartly respond to any ongoing or upcoming weather factors to keep ourselves safe and out of harms way. 

May of us use the local news, radio or social media to keep up.   We here at SERVPRO of Columbia & Suwannee Counties recommend to use the NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) website.  

This website/link will keep you up to date and informed of any upcoming storm possibilities that might require advanced planning to keep everyone safe.  

No one is every "ready" for a Hurricane to damage their home or business, however, you should be ready to evacuate if necessary and know how to prepare your home or business to the best of your ability.  

Community during Covid

9/3/2020 (Permalink)

SERVPRO vehicle with local law enforcement SERVPRO vehicle with local law enforcement

SERVPRO of Columbia and Suwannee Counties has been busy with helping our local community attempt to navigate this pandemic as best we can. We have different plans available for disinfecting a location that may or may not have had a case of coronavirus present.

Along with offering the services SERVPRO has been known for since 1967, we have attempted to assist some local businesses as well as first responders through these trying times.

SERVPRO of Columbia and Suwannee Counties has done numerous outreach activities to include taking lunch to some of the various fire stations in our area, fogging of First Responder vehicles for the County and City as well as giving out a teacher appreciation packet to our local High School's faculty and staff.

We would like to thank anyone who was able to take part in these events for helping us spread the word of the little bit of normal that we as SERVPRO of Columbia and Suwannee Counties are attempting to bring during this period of "New Normal".

Area Rug cleaning

8/4/2020 (Permalink)

Area Rug cleaning Cleaning an Area Rug in our warehouse

An area rug can be used a few different ways. To designate a certain area of a room or to protect the flooring underneath.

SERVPRO of Columbia and Suwannee Counties offers a few different options for cleaning area rugs.

Our fantastic team can clean your area rug where it is located in your home but we also have options for having it cleaned at our warehouse. We can either bring the rug to our warehouse or you can drop it off and then we can begin the process of steam cleaning your area rug.

Once your area rug is cleaned, SERVPRO of Columbia and Suwannee Counties can either deliver the rug to your home or you can stop by our warehouse and pick up the area rug.

Whichever option you choose, feel free to call SERVPRO of Columbia and Suwannee Counties and we will be more then happy to assist.

Wood laminate floors--Friend or Foe

7/30/2020 (Permalink)

Bubbled wood laminate flooring Water damaged wood laminate flooring

Let's play through a scenario, you purchase a home that has wood laminate flooring. On one hand the wood laminate looks great because it gives the appearance of hard wood floors. On the other hand, you could potentially run into an issue where if you have a water damage in your home and have wood laminate flooring down, a lot of that flooring may need to come up due to the fact that water cannot be extracted through the wood laminate. The wood laminate and the padding underneath would need to be removed and then you are left with a portion of your home that has the always fashionable concrete slab flooring. In no way am I saying that wood laminate flooring is something you shouldn't consider having in your home, I am just mentioning that if a water damage occurs in a home with wood laminate flooring the process is much more defined as to how our team would be able to assist with your water damage compared to carpet flooring. If you run into an issue where you see water coming up from between the pieces of wood laminate flooring in your home, do not hesitate to call SERVPRO of Columbia and Suwannee Counties and we will be more then happy to assist you in getting your home back to the point where it looks "Like it never even happened."

Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned

7/30/2020 (Permalink)

Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned logo Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned logo

"We intend to be THE AUTHORITY on what it means to be clean in the new world. It’s important for us to be assertive, making our case that our cleaning is unlike any other such that all of America will demand that the places they visit and the places they work are not clean unless they are Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned."

This is a quote from SERVPRO Chief Marketing Officer Mike Stahl. Certified SERVPRO Cleaned is a new program being implemented by SERVPRO to better assist businesses in establishing themselves as locations that are "Safe to Visit" during the Covid-19 Pandemic.

Through this program, SERVPRO is allowing businesses and local SERVPRO franchises to create a custom cleaning plan that fits with the schedule and budget of the interested business. Whether you want SERVPRO to come in and disinfect your business as little as once a month or as frequently as a daily visit, your local SERVPRO franchise will be more then happy to assist with explaining which options will work best for you and your business.

If you have any other questions, feel free to contact SERVPRO of Columbia and Suwannee Counties at 386-754-0261 for more information.

Saharan Dust

7/2/2020 (Permalink)

Saharan Dust off the coast of Africa Saharan Dust off the coast of Africa

SERVPRO of Columbia and Suwannee Counties likes to keep you informed on the coming storm season and changes that could happen to it.  As we all know, storms are unpredictable especially when other factors come into play that may cause less storms during a season but more powerful storms.

This is where the Saharan Dust come into play. Personally, I had not heard of the Saharan Dust until just a few weeks ago, but natural phenomenon attract my attention so I began to do some research.  Saharan Dust travels across the Atlantic Ocean to different parts of the world. Every so often, particularly during the warmer months, blankets of the dust are carried by strong winds from the Sahara Desert in Western Africa to Trinidad and Tobago, Grenada and Barbados.

This years Saharan Dust is what's being called a "Godzilla" cloud.  I have linked an article below with more information on the Saharan Dust and how it is also affecting the view of the sunrise and sunset.

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2020/06/22/saharan-dust-heads-u-s-bringing-sunsets-and-fewer-tropical-storms/3235299001/

4 Most Common Fires

6/5/2020 (Permalink)

Fireman saving child Fireman saving child

While fires can start at anytime and anywhere, below are descriptions of the four most common types of fires. Acknowledging these types of fires may help you to reduce or even eliminate the risk of starting a fire.

1. KITCHEN FIRES

The most common type of fire in the U.S. is the kitchen fire. The reason that the kitchen is the source of many fire hazards is because the kitchen is where heat, electricity, water, and grease come together.
 
The most common type of kitchen fire is the grease fire. A grease fire is extremely dangerous as it can get out of control quickly and spread from the stove throughout the kitchen and into other rooms of the house.
 
Many grease fires occur because someone leaves a frying pan on the stove unattended. They also occur when someone overheats a pan during attended cooking if the grease catches fire. Grease fires can cause serious injury and extensive property damage.
 
Other types of kitchen fires include oven fires and appliance fires. Fires can also get started in the kitchen when electricity comes in contact with water.

2. ELECTRICAL FIRES 

Electrical fires are caused by a number of different factors, including faulty appliances, worn or faulty electrical wiring, improper use of electrical outlets and worn out breaker boxes.
 
Older homes often do not have the proper wiring to handle the amount of electrical appliances in use today. Often old wiring inside walls becomes frayed or worn, causing shorts and sparks that can ignite.
 
Old breaker boxes are made to shut off electrical current when the circuit becomes overloaded as a fire prevention measure, but often the connections are worn or broken and do not activate the breaker switch.
 
Lighting is another cause of electrical fires, which can be triggered by improper wiring or the use of bulbs that are higher in wattage than the amount recommended for the lighting appliance.

3. HEATER FIRES 

This type of fire is particularly common in the winter months. Portable heaters should always have automatic shutoffs that activate when they overheat as a fire precaution.
Coil space heaters are especially hazardous because the coils will ignite anything combustible nearby. Always keep any type of space heater a minimum of three feet from anything combustible. That includes curtains, bedding, clothing and furniture. Always shut space heaters off when you’re not in the room.
 
Extension cords should not be used with space heaters as they generate too much electricity and can start a fire.

4. SMOKING-RELATED FIRES 

Fires caused by cigarettes account for 1,000 deaths in the U.S. every year. Many times the smoker is not the person who dies.
 
Most smoking fires are started by embers igniting on furniture, bedding and trash cans. Smokers should always be sure cigarettes are completely extinguished before emptying ashtrays into the trash.
 
Never smoke in bed and never smoke when you are tired, inebriated, or drowsy from medication. Do not place ashtrays on flammable surfaces like couches, chairs, or beds where they can tip over and start a fire.
 
The best way to prevent smoking-related fires is to smoke outside the house and have a can filled with sand to extinguish cigarette butts.

SERVPRO of Columbia and Suwannee Counties are always here to help when it comes to making it "Like it never even happened."  Feel free to give us a call at 386-754-0261 if you have any questions.

Always have a plan

6/2/2020 (Permalink)

Home on fire Home on fire

SERVPRO of Columbia and Suwannee Counties hates to see anyone have any type of fire issue in their home.  Here are some tips we would recommend for making a plan to leave your home if a fire was to occur.  Fire can spread rapidly through your home, leaving you as little as one or two minutes to escape safely once the alarm sounds. Pull together everyone in your household and make a plan. Walk through your home and inspect all possible exits and escape routes. Households with children should consider drawing a floor plan of your home, marking two ways out of each room, including windows and doors. Also, mark the location of each smoke alarm. Here are some tips for helping you with your home fire escape plan!

  • Know the plan
    Make sure that you’re familiar with your building’s evacuation plan, which should illustrate what residents are supposed to do in the event of an emergency. The evacuation plan should be posted in places where all residents can see and review it, and the building management should hold a fire drill with occupants at least once a year. Most states also require that buildings periodically test their fire safety systems as well.  Be sure to participate when your building drills take place. When looking for an apartment or high-rise home, look for one with an automatic sprinkler system. Sprinklers can extinguish a home fire in less time that it takes for the fire department to arrive.
  • Practice is key
    Whether your building has one floor or 50, it’s essential that you and your family are prepared to respond to a fire alarm. Identify all of the exits in your building and if you are using an escape planning grid, mark them on your escape plan. Make sure to mark the various stairways too, in case one is blocked by fire.
  • Never use the elevator
    In case of fire, always use the stairs to get out, never the elevator. Make sure to practice using the stairs as part of your escape plan. If someone in your family has difficulty climbing down steps, make sure to incorporate a contingency for this into your plan.
  • Stay low
    Smoke from a fire is toxic and deadly no matter what kind of structure you live in. When you hold your fire drill, everyone in the family should practice getting low and going under the smoke to the exit. In the event of a fire, if both stairwells are filled with smoke, stay in your apartment and wait for the firefighters.
  • Seal yourself in for safety
    If you can’t exit an apartment building due to smoke or fire in the hallway, call the fire department to report your exact location and gather in a room with a window to await their arrival. Close all doors between you and the fire. Use duct tape or towels to create a seal around the door and over air vents in order to keep smoke from coming in.
  • Stay by the window
    If possible, you should open your windows at the top and the bottom so fresh air can get in. Don’t break the window – if smoke enters the room from outside the building, you won’t be able to protect yourself.
  • Signal to firefighters
    Wave a flashlight or light colored cloth at the window to let the fire department know where you are located.

Hurricane Seasons around the world

6/2/2020 (Permalink)

Hurricane from space Hurricane from space

A hurricane season is a distinct time of year when tropical cyclones (tropical depressions, tropical storms, and hurricanes) usually develop. Whenever we mention hurricane season here in the U.S. we're usually referring to the Atlantic Hurricane Season, whose storms most commonly affect us, but ours isn't the only season there is...

Hurricane Seasons Around the World

Besides the Atlantic hurricane season, 6 others exist:

  • the Eastern Pacific hurricane season
  • the Northwest Pacific typhoon season
  • the North Indian cyclone season
  • the Southwest Indian cyclone season
  • the Australian/Southeast Indian cyclone season
  • the Australian/Southwest Pacific cyclone season  

While each of the above basins has its own particular seasonal patterns of tropical cyclone activity, activity tends to peak worldwide in late summer. May is typically the least active month, and September, the most active.

Hurricane Season Predictions

Several months before the season starts, several well-known groups of meteorologists make predictions (complete with guesstimates of the number of named storms, hurricanes, and major hurricanes) about how active the upcoming season will be.

Hurricane forecasts are usually issued twice: initially in April or May in advance of the June season start, then an update in August, just before the historical September peak of hurricane season.

  • The NOAA releases its initial outlook the week prior to the June 1 season start.
  • Colorado State University's Department of Atmospheric Sciences has been making and publicizing their tropical forecasts since 1984.
  • Tropical Storm Risk (TSR) (a consortium of insurance, risk management, and climate forecasting experts based out of University College London in the UK), first introduced its tropical cyclone forecasts in the late 90s and early 00s.
  • The Weather Channel is considered a relative newbie to the hurricane forecast arena.