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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Archived Blog Posts

Winter weather is here in Central IL. Take steps to prevent problems.

2/2/2021 (Permalink)

Outside faucet with ice built up all around it. Don't let the winter weather bring you down.

Why Pipe Freezing is a Problem

Water has a unique property in that it expands as it freezes. This expansion puts tremendous pressure on whatever is containing it, including metal or plastic pipes. No matter the strength of a container, expanding water can cause pipes to break.

Pipes that freeze most frequently are:

  • Pipes that are exposed to severe cold, like outdoor hose bibs, swimming pool supply lines, and water sprinkler lines.
  • Water supply pipes in unheated interior areas like basements and crawl spaces, attics, garages, or kitchen cabinets.
  • Pipes that run against exterior walls that have little or no insulation.
How to Protect Pipes From Freezing

Before the onset of cold weather, protect your pipes from freezing by following these recommendations:

  • Drain water from swimming pool and water sprinkler supply lines following manufacturer's or installer's directions. Do not put antifreeze in these lines unless directed. Antifreeze is environmentally harmful, and is dangerous to humans, pets, wildlife, and landscaping.
  • Remove, drain, and store hoses used outdoors. Close inside valves supplying outdoor hose bibs. Open the outside hose bibs to allow water to drain. Keep the outside valve open so that any water remaining in the pipe can expand without causing the pipe to break.
  • Add insulation to attics, basements and crawl spaces. Insulation will maintain higher temperatures in these areas.
  • Check around the home for other areas where water supply lines are located in unheated areas. Look in the garage, and under kitchen and bathroom cabinets. Both hot and cold water pipes in these areas should be insulated.
  • Consider installing specific products made to insulate water pipes like a "pipe sleeve" or installing UL-listed "heat tape," "heat cable," or similar materials on exposed water pipes. Newspaper can provide some degree of insulation and protection to exposed pipes – even ¼” of newspaper can provide significant protection in areas that usually do not have frequent or prolonged temperatures below freezing.
  • Consider relocating exposed pipes to provide increased protection from freezing.
How to Prevent Frozen Pipes
  • Keep garage doors closed if there are water supply lines in the garage.
  • Open kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors to allow warmer air to circulate around the plumbing. Be sure to move any harmful cleaners and household chemicals up out of the reach of children.
  • When the weather is very cold outside, let the cold water drip from the faucet served by exposed pipes. Running water through the pipe - even at a trickle - helps prevent pipes from freezing.
  • If you will be going away during cold weather, leave the heat on in your home, set to a temperature no lower than 55° F.

Weather warnings in the winter tell you what to expect and what to do.

1/28/2021 (Permalink)

Map of the Unites States. Letting you know the weather predicted. Be prepared!

Knowing what your weather report is trying to help you avoid is important. The following are warnings that can be put out during the winter in Central Illinois. So when you’re keeping an eye on the weather channel or the online weather broadcasting, remember these terms.

Wind Chill Advisory: Wind chills of -15° to -24° expected. These winds could be dangerous.

Wind Chill Warning: Wind chills of -25° or colder are expected and can be life-threatening.

Ice Storm Warning: Dangerous accumulations of ice will appear. They will likely result in power outages, tree damage, and unsafe driving conditions.

Heavy Snow Warning: Snow accumulations of 6+ inches. Watch for hazardous travel conditions.

Winter Weather Advisory: Cold, ice, and/or 2 - 5 inches of snow are expected.

Winter Storm Watch: Severe winter weather, such as heavy snow or ice, is possible within the next day or two.

Winter Storm Warning: Severe ice and/or 6+ inches of snow are going to start soon/now.

Blizzard Warning: Expect heavy snow, strong winds, blinding snow, near-zero visibility, deep drifts, and life-threatening travel conditions.

When these warnings are sent out, it is important to get to cover and prepare to stay indoors for as long as is necessary. You can replace cars, you can repair your home, but your life isn’t worth risking.

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth is here for any needs you may have. 

When the pipes break in you home or business SERVPRO is ready to help.

1/28/2021 (Permalink)

A copper pipe with a break in it squirting out water. SERVPRO can help!

Home and business owners can do all of the right things and still end up with burst pipes. In subzero weather, even interior pipes can burst. Weakened seams or bends may succumb to pressure from any type of clog. When you have flood or water damage, call SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth immediately. Since we can't be there before you hang up the phone, there are some things you can do.

When the Pipes Break:

  • Before there is an emergency, know where the water main is located
  • The water main is usually under the kitchen sink or outside the building
  • When the water starts gushing out of a burst pipe, turn off the water
  • There will still be water in the pipes, so you need to drain that water:
    • flush each toilet at least once
    • run cold water from all taps
    • turn off taps once the cold water is drained
    • shut off the hot-water heater
    • run the taps for the hot water
    • turn off the taps once the hot water is drained
  • Call a plumber
  • Start cleaning up the water to prevent water damage

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth is ready to help 24 hours a day 7 days a week. (217) 428-2371

Keep yourself and employees this winter with safety prevention!

1/28/2021 (Permalink)

A person slipping on the ice covered ground. Prevention is key!

Winter provides many hazards that can bring danger to everyday people and employees working outdoors. These hazards include slipping and falling. With snow and ice covered conditions, you run the risk of taking major falls, which can lead to serious injuries.


Education is essential in preventing winter weather-related injuries. Consider the following recommendations to prevent slip and fall injuries during the winter months:

  • Wear the proper footwear that provides traction on snow and ice. Footwear should be made of anti-slip material; avoid plastic and leather-soled shoes or boots.
  • Exercise caution when entering and exiting vehicles, and use the vehicle for balance and support.
  • Try to walk only in designated areas that are safe for foot traffic. If you notice that a walkway is covered in ice, walk on the grass next to the sidewalk, which will have more traction.
  • Avoid inclines that are typically difficult to walk up or down as they may be more treacherous in winter conditions.
  • Take small steps to maintain your center of balance, walk slowly and never run. When possible, walk with your hands free to maintain your balance. And despite the cold temperatures, avoid putting your hands in your pockets. This will help you better maintain your balance and allow you to break a fall should you slip.
  • Use handrails, walls or anything stationary to assist in steadying your feet.
  • Look ahead to the path in front of you to avoid hazards.
  • Test a potentially slippery area before stepping on it by tapping your foot on the surface first.
  • Remove debris, water and ice from all working walkways.
  • Steer clear of roof edges, floor openings and other drop-offs to avoid slipping hazards.
  • Sand or salt surfaces covered by ice or snow to provide traction.
  • Dry your shoes or boots on floor mats when entering a building.

If You Begin to Slip…

  • Twist your body and roll backward to avoid falling forward and injuring your face.
  • Try to relax your body when you start to feel your legs give way.

If you are carrying a load, throw it off to the side so it does not land on you when you fall. This will also free your arms to help break your fall.

These are some tips and tricks to help keep yourself safe this winter season. SERVPRO wishes everyone a safe and enjoyable winter, and hopefully these tips can keep you all free of injuries.

Is your Fireplace ready for the season?

12/17/2020 (Permalink)

Wood burning in a brick fireplace. Think safety before you start a fire.

What to Check Before You Light a Fire

Clean the fireplace area. Be sure all flammable materials, such as drapes, magazines, books, clothing and home decor items, are well away from the fireplace. If you have a mantel, check that nothing is hanging off of it.

Check the chimney. Make sure the protective liners of your chimney are in good working order. Search for a certified professional to help clean and inspect your fireplace and chimney. When looking for a professional, you may want to ask these questions:

  • How long has the professional been in business?
  • Does the professional have references?
  • Do they have any unresolved complaints filed within the city or state?
  • Do they or the company they work for carry valid business liability insurance?
  • Does their company guarantee a CSIA Certified Chimney Sweep will be there for the inspection?

Clear the air. Be sure the room where your fireplace is located has been well ventilated and is free of any flammable fumes and gases.

How to Light a Fire

When you’re ready to set up and light the fire, be sure to follow these steps:

  • Step 1: Place two medium sized pieces of firewood on the metal grate approximately 6 inches apart.
  • Step 2: Crumple sheets of newspaper (tinder) in between the two pieces of firewood and cover the tinder with kindling.
  • Step 3: Place one to two more pieces of firewood on top of the other logs. Make sure there is enough space for ventilation.
  • Step 4: Check that the fireplace damper (vent) is fully open.
  • Step 5: Start off by twisting a single sheet of newspaper and light it while holding it as high up as possible in the fireplace. Be careful not to burn yourself. This can help establish a good draft in the chimney as the heat rises.
  • Step 6: Slowly light the kindling with the burning paper.
  • Step 7: Once a fire is established, add firewood as needed and make sure to keep flames visible below the fireplace opening.

Storm Damage Prevention Tips

12/17/2020 (Permalink)

Houses in a neighborhood with dark clouds overhead. Be ready and prepared!

Storm Damage Prevention Tips for Homeowners

There is no doubt that keeping your property in excellent condition – well maintained and well protected (against intruders and thieves, as well as against the elements) – is your top priority as a homeowner. But while you may be living in a safe neighborhood or city where crime is not an issue, you cannot escape the weather, no matter where your home is – severe storms can happen anywhere in the country, throughout the year. Whether it’s a violent thunderstorm, hailstorm, snowstorm, hurricane, tornado, or any other natural disaster, your home can be badly damaged by the adverse weather conditions.

There is nothing you can do to stop a storm from hitting your area, of course, but there are many precautions you can take to minimize and even prevent the potential damage to your home. Most of these preventive measures will help you not only avoid storm damage and costly repairs, but also upgrade your property and keep it in good condition at all times.

Sewer and Drain Backup Coverage

Sometimes a storm can lead to a sewer or drain backup which will result in standing water in your home.  A backup can cause significant indoor flooding and property damage and if the water is contaminated with sewage, it poses a major risk to your health.  Typically, homeowner’s insurance policies do not cover the damage caused by a drain or sewage backup.  Make sure you check your insurance policy to see if the damage from a backup is covered.  If not, you must purchase a separate rider to cover the damage.  It may cost a little more to add the rider, but this will better protect your home from flood damage.

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth is here to help with any storm damage needs. (217)428-2371

Water can do damage at anytime. BE PREPARED!

11/2/2020 (Permalink)

Laundry room filled with water. We are here to help with any size disaster.

Water damage can happen at any point for anyone, home or business, resulting in damaged property. These do's are only for clean water and do not’s pertain to sewage water. Sewage water is treated differently since it causes different damage and requires a different cleanup process. With the right tools and pieces of equipment, our professionals can safely dry out your home or business and the contents within it. Here are some things to always keep in mind.

  • To minimize the damage, make sure to shut off the source of water and turn off the electricity. It is essential to remove as much excess water as possible by mopping and soaking up with towels. This is especially important for wood furniture. 
  • To ensure that more damage isn't sustained by the furniture make sure to try and move it, if safe to do so. 
  • Make sure to NOT enter a room with standing water since there could be a risk of electrical shock 
  • Make sure to disconnect all power first. 
  • It is recommended to NOT leave rugs and furniture upholstery wet against one another because the fabrics have the potential to bleed between each other. 
  • It is important to note that you should not be utilizing your household vacuum to try and suck up any water. 

If these tips are followed, then damage can be minimized and you will be better prepared for help to arrive. Remember to stay safe and get excess water cleaned up professionally to minimize the chance of mold growth. Our Team is Ready to help.

Standing Water is a dangerous thing.

11/2/2020 (Permalink)

Water standing on hardwood floor. Any kind of standing water can be dangerous, SERVPRO of Deatur/Forsyth can help make it safe again.

When floodwater intrudes into your home or commercial business it can cause what is called "standing water". This can be a dangerous thing if not respected. Many times, standing water must be dealt with that can sometimes take up to 10 or 11 days to completely disappear unless it is able to be mitigated immediately. There are some precautionary measures to take into consideration when dealing with standing water. SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth took some time to compile the ones we felt were the most important.

Standing Water are not natural swimming pools

  • Sewage, debris, and other unpleasant things can be in the standing water leftovers
  • Swimming, wading, or rafting can make you sick
  • Don’t drink the water
  • Water conducts electricity. Underground power lines can give you a dangerous shock

Standing Water vs. Animals:

  • Snakes and other animals may get into your building. Wear work boots and heavy gloves when you clean up
  • Some animals might find your office a cozy place to live
  • If tap water is unsafe to drink, it is unsafe for your pets

If you find yourself dealing with standing water of any kind, SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth is here to help make it "Like it never even happened."

Fire Safety Tips

11/2/2020 (Permalink)

Different types of fire extinguishers. Always have a fire extinguisher ready for any disaster that may happen.

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth is always here to help if you have a fire damage. 

Fire Safety Tips:

Check all electrical appliances, cords and outlets monthly.

Carefully read the directions for proper use of space heaters, electrical cords.

Be vigilant in the kitchen. Always keep a close eye on food while cooking. If you leave the kitchen, turn the stove off. Take an oven mitt or spoon to remind yourself of the food left on the stove.

Keep fireplaces kept clean and free of paper, wood or flammable materials that can escape while burning or left unattended.

Always keep matches and lighters out of children’s reach.

Use candles safely by keeping them away from children, pets, furniture and curtains.

Test your smoke alarms monthly and change the batteries twice a year (I.e. Spring & Fall)

Practice fire drills at home and work

Always remember to PASS

Pull the pin at the top to break the temper seal

Aim the extinguisher low, pointing the nozzle at the base of the fire

Squeeze the handle to release the extinguishing agent

Sweep the extinguisher from side to side, continuing to aim at the base of the fire until it appears to be out

Did you know there are 4 types of fire extinguishers?

Water extinguishers

Water extinguishers are filled with regular tap water. The best way to remove heat is to dump water on the fire, however depending on the type of fire, this is not always the best option.

Foam extinguishers

The foam has a blanketing effect that knocks down the flames, smothering and cooling them. Hopefully preventing re-ignition of the flammable vapors by sealing the surface of the solution.

Dry Power extinguishers

Dry power fire extinguishers interrupt the chemical reaction of the fire by coating the fuel with a thin layer of powder, separating the fuel from the surrounding oxygen.

Carbon Dioxide (C02) extinguishers

C02 extinguishers contain carbon dioxide, a non –flammable gas. C02 is heavier than oxygen so these extinguishers work by displacing or taking away oxygen from the surrounding area. C02 is also very cold so it also works by cooling the fuel. C02 is non corrosive and on conductive.

Our SERVPRO team can help you with your fire damage anytime!

11/2/2020 (Permalink)

Black backgorund with flames at the bottom. It says at the top "Are you prepared" Are you prepared?

Steps to Help Make Fire Cleanup in Your Home More Effective

A sudden flare-up in an area like the kitchen is likely to leave surfaces or fixtures such as cabinets, doors, and even the ceiling scorched or caked with soot. You can fix these damages in many ways, including replacing the degraded materials. However, you are more likely to prefer a cost-friendly solution. Fire cleanup offers that solution when done correctly.

What cleanups can achieve
Before choosing a solution such as fire cleanup in your home, it is essential to establish whether it is appropriate. Cleaning can help you deal with blackened or stained surfaces as well as bad odor. It can also restore charred surfaces effectively if the charring is not too deep. However, you cannot restore damages that compromise the structural integrity of a material.

Home-based solutions
For minor incidents, you may be able to do the cleanup on your own. Knowing particular tips can help you achieve the right outcome. To deal with surface discoloration and soot from surfaces such as walls, use warm water and detergent. Cleaning products containing TSP, tri-sodium phosphate are great for reducing smoke odors so you can look for cleaning agents containing that agent. Here is the caveat. SERVPRO techs ALWAYS pre-test detergents and cleaning agents before applying to surfaces. Often, DIY'ers smear and stain and exacerbate the fire and soot damage. Try calling us first.

Using Advanced Cleaning Procedures
While conventional methods can be useful at times, in many cases the damages left are too extensive, thus requiring advanced cleaning methods. Otherwise, you would have to replace or resurface the affected materials.  Dry ice blasting and soda blasting are two great advanced cleaning options our SERVPRO teams use. They rely on air pressure to drive the abrading material over the surface removing thick soot or charring.  Both are also mildly abrasive, so they do not cause additional damages to the surface.

To clean or not to clean?
For surfaces with unique properties such as acoustic tiles or other porous materials, wet cleaning can cause problems, including dissolving the textured surfaces. Our SERVPRO technicians use Peroxide Active cleaning, which helps remove all soils while retaining the properties of the material. Often, inexpensive, porous materials should be removed and discarded.

We use specific tools to combat fire damage. Call the professionals

11/2/2020 (Permalink)

power outlet plug with fire coming out of the plug. This can happen to anyone.

The chill of winter can cause some people to use devices that are designed to warm up their house, but unfortunately, they can sometimes cause fire damage to your property if left unattended. Generally speaking, devices that plug into a wall outlet and use a heating element of any kind should not be left on their own or else they turn into a fire hazard. However, this does not mean you cannot use space heaters or other devices that are similar; it only means that you should use them responsibly and with caution. Sometimes, despite your best efforts, accidents happen and when they do it is reassuring to know that expert help is close by and available to call.

When we receive your call, we make it our priority to arrive at your property promptly so we can remediate the fire damage inside your Nashua home before it causes further loss. Fire damage should never be left for an extended amount of time before remediation occurs. Many people recommend that you wait and consider all of your options before making an impactful decision, however, it is actually the opposite of what should be done when home damage of any kind occurs. Due to the extreme heat during a blaze, in combination with the spread of soot and ash, many objects inside your home can become discolored. The longer it takes for remediation to occur, the worse this discoloration can become.

Here at SERVPRO, our techs bring advanced equipment with them to your home. We use specific tools to combat fire damage, including hydroxyl generations and thermal foggers to handle the malodorous smell that fire causes. Our SERVPRO technicians can then begin to clean up any charred or destroyed objects in your sitting room, such as burned curtains or books. Additionally, SERVPRO can remove the soot left behind by the fire inside of your home with chemical solutions that separate the particles from the surface.

What Is Dry Ice Blasting?

11/2/2020 (Permalink)

A SERVPRO employee dry ice blasting inside a house. We can help you with any of your dry ice blasting needs.

What Is Dry Ice Blasting?

Dry ice blasting is a revolutionary blasting method that uses dry ice pellets (CO2 in solid form) as the blasting material. The process is very environmentally friendly and provides a fast and effective alternative to traditional methods of cleaning industrial production equipment.

Dry Ice Blasting has become the preferred method to remove smoke soot, vaporized synthetic resins and char. Advanced Indoor Air Quality Care uses C02 dry ice blasting can reduce or eliminate the musty burnt smell that results from fire, smoke and water damage.

Dry Ice Blasting Is A Three-Step Process

Kinetic: When dry ice pellets are accelerated in a jet of compressed air and strike a surface at the speed of sound, they crack and loosen the coating of the surface being treated.

Thermal: The low temperature of dry ice pellets (-79oC/-110oF) makes the coating brittle, cracks it and loosens it. This allows dry ice to permeate the coating.

Sublimation: Dry ice penetrates the coating and immediately sublimes (passes directly from solid to vapor state). This results in a 700-fold increase in volume, an explosive effect that lifts the coating off the surface.

The Benefits Of Dry Ice Blasting

A Dry Cleaning Process: Dry ice blasting is a completely dry process because dry ice pellets consist of CO2 and vaporize immediately on contact with the surface to be cleaned.

No Waste Disposal: The system produces no waste products. Only the coating that has been removed remains to be disposed of, and this can usually be swept or vacuumed from the floor.

Environmentally Friendly: Dry ice blasting is completely non-toxic and no hazardous chemicals are used. Costs connected with the disposal of blasting materials and solvents are saved.

No Abrasion: Dry ice blasting is non-abrasive and therefore surfaces are treated very gently. Wear and tear resulting from the use of steel brushes, scrapers and other blasting materials is avoided.

Improved Production Quality: Dry ice blasting often allows for your production equipment to be cleaned while in operation without a need for dismantling or costly downtime.

Call SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth for Dry Ice Blasting.

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsythis locally owned and operated and we are proud to be part of this community. Fire damage can be devastating. You need a caring expert to guide you through this crisis. We’ll treat your property with great care.

Our Fire Damage Restoration Services

Since each smoke and fire damage situation is a little different, each one requires a unique solution tailored for the specific conditions. When various materials burn, the soot and residue they create differs greatly and requires a specific cleaning procedure. The steps listed below illustrate our process for the “typical” fire damage restoration.

Water damages can happen in any season!

2/17/2020 (Permalink)

A man sitting in the kitchen at the table reading a paper with water pouring down on him. Don't let this be you!

Many people think they don't have to worry about broken pipes in the spring/summer but that really isn't the case. Before leaving for that vacation you might want to turn off your water and drain the pipes just like you would in the winter.

There are many reasons for a broken pipe in the spring/summer. Here are a few:

1. Invasive tree roots.

2. Extended wet/dry spells ( this can make the ground shift and the extra pressure of this movement can cause problems with buried pipes).

3. Rust in Metal Pipes.

4. Wear and old age.

5. Hard Water.

6. Clogs.

7. Substandard repairs.

8. When a pipe burst; if you can, turn off the water supply at the main cut off valve when a pipe breaks.

9. Drain the water by running cold water in the sink and flushing the toilets.

10. Of course call:

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth to help get your property dried out.

We are a 24/7 emergency service provider.

(217) 428-2371

Snow melt can create water issues in your basement.

2/7/2020 (Permalink)

Snow on the grass and some snow that has started to melt in puddles.A grey cat is drinking from the puddles. Be prepared when it warms up after a snow storm.

Wet Basement After a Snow Melt?

After a heavy snow comes water. This is just one of the many certainties we all face. Proper runoff and drainage can help direct water away from your foundation, but water can still sneak by. A sump pump can help push water away from your home. If your drainage or sump pump aren’t in proper working order, then melting snow could turn from flake to pond in your basement.

A wet basement is more than just a headache. Depending on how much water invades the space, it could signal serious damage to the structure of your home. In fact, just an inch of water creeping across the floor can cost you more than $10,000.

Here are a few tips you can employ to make sure your home stays dry during snow melt or spring rains.

1) Check the Gutters and Foundation Drainage.

2) Call a waterproofer!

3) Invest in a Sump Pump with an Alarm.

If your home has a water damage call SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth to make it "Like it never even happened."

The best way to keep mold from spreading is to act fast when you know water is present.

1/22/2020 (Permalink)

An office space with chairs and desks. Water is on the carpet. This is a local business that we were happy to help make it "Like it never even happened."

Keep mold from growing by acting fast with these steps!

1. Remove water as quickly as possible

Use a wet/dry vacuum to clean up as much water as soon as possible. These machines are the most effective tools for removing water and can be rented or provided by water and smoke damage remediation companies that specialize in repairing residential flood damage.

2. Use fans to speed up carpet drying process

It can take several days for fans to completely dry a water-damaged area. The good news is that they also help circulate fresh air.

3. Use a dehumidfier to dry out the room

These machines remove excessive moisture, which makes the air feel cooler and limits mold and mildew growth. Any equipment that helps dry out the air and the ground will speed up the drying time for your damaged floors and coverings.

4. Steam clean carpet and flooring

Steam clean all carpets to properly sanitize and deodorize. Typically, water-damaged carpet padding must be replaced.

Replacing just the padding is much less expensive than having to re-carpet your entire home.

5. Sanitize walls and baseboards

Anything touched by storm water should be sanitized. Clean all walls, hard-surface floors and other household surfaces with soap and water.

Sanitize them with a solution of 1.5 cups of chlorine bleach to one gallon of water. Remember to wear rubber gloves during cleanup.

6. Check furniture

Look for water damage and remove furniture from wet flooring.

Water damage can easily be hidden underneath rugs or carpet, so be sure to give your home a thorough inspection if you suspect water damage.

Call SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth to help you with any size disaster!


Bathroom cleaning hacks!

1/14/2020 (Permalink)

White bathroom with glass shower doors. Keep your bathroom clean with these tips!

How to Clean: Bathroom Hacks without Chemicals

Streaks & Spots on Glass

Between the drops of water that splatter on mirrors to those on your glass shower door, the mineral deposits left by water can be annoying. With just a few spritzes of a natural cleaning solution, these streaks can usually be wiped away with a little elbow grease.

Create your own natural cleaning solution with vinegar and water. Fill your spray bottle with one part vinegar to two parts water to make the best shower cleaner. Shake the bottle to mix the two liquids well. Spray your mirror or glass surface and use a clean cloth or newspaper to wipe from top to bottom. Use firm pressure (like with a squeegee) to push all the liquid down and off the surface! If it squeaks, you’ll know it’s clean!

Porcelain and Grout

Porcelain areas of the bathroom pick up gunk over time, so they almost always need a scrub down. Here are some ideas on how to get your grout, sink, or bathtub cleaner without using anything toxic.

  • Sprinkle the tub, sink, or grout with baking soda, taking care to reach all areas of the tub. Use a spray bottle filled with vinegar to spray over the desired area and let sit for a few moments. Scrub the area clean with a brush and rinse away with water.
  • Sprinkle the area you wish to clean with baking soda and then use a spray bottle of hydrogen peroxide to create a foaming natural scrub instead.
  • Heat a ½ cup of vinegar in the microwave until it’s very warm (not boiling) and pour into a spray bottle. Pour a ½ cup of your favorite natural dish soap into the same spray bottle and shake it lightly to mix well. Spray liberally over the desired area, let sit for a few minutes, then simply wipe away.

As you can see, it takes only a few ingredients to keep your bathroom sparkling clean and smelling fresh. These items are often found around the home and easy to buy in bulk if you want to keep them stocked up at home.

Ceiling tile stains are a sign that you have issues that need to be fixed.

1/14/2020 (Permalink)

A large water stain on a drop down ceiling. Call the professionals at SERVPRO to get the job done right.

Water Stain on Your Ceiling? Here’s What You Should Know.

There’s nothing worse than glancing up only to spot a yellow ring or discolored blemish on your ceiling. This is a visible mark of water damage in your home, which can not be remedied with a simple coat of paint, as doing so can facilitate the growth of mold or mildew. Water stains should instead be repaired immediately in order to avoid further damage to ceilings. But before breaking out any tools, determining the cause of your stain can help in deciding the best course of action to take.

Common Causes

Several different scenarios can result in ceiling water stains. The first of which is clogged gutters. Full or clogged gutters are the likely culprit if you’ve experienced heavy or persistent rain. The second scenario is leaky pipes. Leaky pipes could run from a bathroom, air conditioner, refrigerator, or dishwasher if one is located in the room above the stained ceiling. Another common source is a caulking issue. If the caulking that surrounds your bathtub or shower deteriorates, water can leak down into the ceiling below. Think about any recent events that could have kickstarted the leak, such as yesterday’s heavy rainstorm or the last time someone in the house took a shower, as one of those situations could have led to your ceiling’s water stain.

Taking Action vs Calling a Professional

Verifying the source of a leak can sometimes involve drilling holes in the ceiling in order to search for the source, which may be uncomfortable for some homeowners. If the idea of removing the water stain on your own generates unease, hiring a professional may be beneficial. A professional can also get the job done in a fast, efficient, and cost-effective manner, as most homeowners are not equipped with the knowledge or skills necessary in order to repair a leak.

Sewer backup is a dangerous thing! Don't try to clean it up yourself.

1/10/2020 (Permalink)

Inside a house house that has a sewer backup. The sewer is all over the floor and contents. We can help you make it "Like it never even happened"!

Sewer backup is a troublesome incident that causes a lot of hassle and disruption to daily life – it may not be as destructive as a fire or a tornado, but it presents a variety of health hazards and sanitation issues and may result in considerable property damage and serious personal injury. Therefore, sewage backup has to be dealt with quickly and efficiently – in the event of a sewage spill in your home, you need to evacuate everyone, turn off the power and water supply to the building, and call a plumber and a cleanup specialist to fix the problem.

Depending on the severity of the situation, you may be able to take some steps to limit the damage, salvage your belongings, or even handle the problem yourself. Have in mind though that sewage cleanup is a laborious and dangerous job, so do not undertake the task unless the spill is small and easily manageable.

What to Do After Sewage Backup

Regardless of whether you intend to use professional sewage cleanup services or attempt DIY sewage cleaning, there are some important precautionary measures to take as soon as you notice the problem:

  • Evacuate children, seniors, and pets and do not allow them in the affected area until it is restored to a safe condition;
  • Contact the utility companies that service your area and have them shut off the electricity, gas, and water supply to your home. If the spill is small and there’s no danger to you, you can turn off the power and water supply yourself (only if the power distribution panel and main water valve are safely above water!) – just make sure you wear appropriate personal protective equipment;
  • Open windows to ventilate the area;
  • Take any dry, uncontaminated items away;
  • Add small amounts of chlorine bleach to standing water – this will ensure some disinfection and prevent bacteria from spreading;
  • Notify your insurance company that there has been a sewage backup in your home and make sure you take several pictures of the spill, as well as the water damaged items and structural materials before the cleanup begins (you will need them as proof for your insurance claim).

As already mentioned, cleaning up sewer backup is a difficult, unpleasant, and risky task. Calling professional cleaners is highly recommended. 

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth can cleanup your sewage backup. Call us anytime 24/7.

(217) 428-2371

We know how to handle Asbestos!

1/6/2020 (Permalink)

a man removing asbestos in an old home. Don't expose yourself to asbestos.

Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral substance that can be pulled into a fluffy consistency. Asbestos fibers are soft and flexible yet resistant to heat, electricity and chemical corrosion. Pure asbestos is an effective insulator and c an be mixed in to cloth, paper, cement, plastic and other materials to make them strong. 

These qualities once made asbestos very viable, but unfortunately, they also make asbestos highly toxic.

Asbestos hazards may occur during manufacturing of asbestos-containing products; performing brake or clutch repairs, renovating or demolishing buildings; or cleanup from those activities. Asbestos workers have increased  changes of getting two principal types of cancer: cancer of the lung tissue and mesothelioma.

Some materials are presumed to contain asbestos if installed before 1981: thermal system insulation, roofing and siding shingles, vinyl floor tiles, plaster, cement, putties, ceiling tiles and spray coatings, industrial pipe wrapping, etc. 

Testing for asbestos also need to be perform on commercial buildings. 

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth can help remove any Asbestos in your home or property. 

Give us a call anytime 24/7 (217) 428-2371

Keep your pipes from freezing during the winter.

1/2/2020 (Permalink)

Copper water pipe with water bursting out of it. Save yourself the headache of a busted pipe by taking steps to prevent it.

Did you know that your home’s water line can leak or break due to frozen water? Below-freezing temperatures cause water to freeze mid-flow through your home’s pipes. This can lead to a burst pipe or leaking water line. Also, septic tanks are more likely to burst when the dirt is frozen and snow is on the ground.

If you live in a location with hard water, sediment buildup in the water heater tank causes rust to develop. This rust is harder to get rid of during the winter.

Because of this, your family deals with contaminated drinking, bathing, and cooking water for months. These plumbing problems are a direct cause of winter’s harsh conditions. Sudden temperature drops, snowfall, hail, and other weather-related problems leave your home’s plumbing in a tough position.  

How To Prevent Cold-Weather Plumbing Problems

1/2/2020 (Permalink)

Copper line that has a hole in it from it freezing. Prevent this from happening to you!

 Use the following precautionary measures to prevent plumbing problems:

  1. Lower the temperature of the water heater. When the water heater is first installed, plumbers turn its temperature to around 170 degrees Fahrenheit just in case. Yet, many homes don’t need that much steam and pressure.

    This winter, turn down the water heater between 120 to 140 degrees Fahrenheit. This prevents a burst or leak and reduces heating costs between 6 to 10 percent. Tip: To be more eco-friendly, contact an expert during the warmer months about installing a tankless water heater or going solar.

  2. Insulate pipes. After doing this, you pay less for hot water, and it’s less likely that the pipes will freeze. During the insulation process, look in the basement, crawl spaces, attic, garage, and under kitchen and bathroom counters. These spaces may have unheated water supply lines. Both hot and cold lines in these areas need insulation to maintain higher temperatures.

  3. Drain water from the swimming pool. If you have a swimming pool, drain the water and the sprinkler supply lines by following the manufacturer’s instructions.

  4. Open and disconnect the outdoor hose bibs and allow the water to drain completely. Once completed, close the indoor valves and keep the outdoor valve open. This allows the pipe to expand without bursting. Store the hose in the garage or backyard shed for the winter.

  5. Install pipe sleeves, heat tape, or a heat cable for prevention. To save money, use newspaper to keep the insulator dry.

  6. Keep the garage door closed as often as possible if supply lines are present in or around the area.

  7. Remove harmful household chemicals and cleaning products from under the kitchen and bathroom sinks. Open those cabinets to allow warm air to circulate around the plumbing underneath the counters.

  8. Let the water drip from the faucet served by exposed pipes when the weather is too cold.

  9. Turn off the water supply to your home to reduce pressure in your home’s plumbing anatomy.

  10. Call a plumbing professional to move any outdoor pipes. This provides less exposure to the harsh winter elements.

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth is here to help our local community.

1/2/2020 (Permalink)

SERVPRO employees standing in front of a SERVRPO truck. SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth

1. Donate Your Time

One of the most effective ways of giving back is volunteering your time at places like your local non-profit, school, homeless shelter, animal shelter, etc. Your time is valuable and gifting it can make a world of difference in the lives of many.

2. A Random Act of Kindness for A Neighbor  

Volunteering your time and energy can help strengthen your neighborhood with simple gestures of kindness. Lending a helping hand to a neighbor who is juggling handfuls of groceries to moving a piece of furniture is a generous act that leaves a lasting impression.

3. Participate in Fundraisers and Charity Events

Finding a cause that you are passionate about can be great motivation for assisting or even creating a fundraising event or charitable activity in your community. 

4. Help a child in need

If you want to help a child in need, you can volunteer with organizations.

5. Volunteer at your local senior living community

Volunteering at your local senior center as ways to give back to the community can help prevent the feeling of isolation and depression among certain seniors. Some of the ways you can help include aiding seniors with daily tasks, keeping them independent and in their own homes. You can also volunteer to help aging seniors by joining organizations geared toward benefiting seniors in need.

Preparing for the Winter Weather

12/30/2019 (Permalink)

Snow on a drawing of a thermostat. Preparing for the winter weather is key!

Don't we all wish winter just means snow days where we get to stay home and lounge all day in our pajamas, watch movies, and play in the snow?

Too bad that's not reality.

Winter storms can bring all sorts of issues for your home or business, so we have compiled some tips to counter those issues:

Tips for Preparing Your Home for Winter Weather

  • Keep cabinet doors open during cold spells. This allows warm air to circulate around pipes.
  • Keep a slow trickle of water flowing through faucets, especially if the pipes for faucets run through unheated or uninsulated areas of your home.
  • Consider shutting off outdoor faucets. Find the shut-off valve in the basement or crawl space and turn it to "off."
  • If you follow the previous step, then open the outdoor faucet to help ensure it drains completely and the inner valve is shut off.
  • Ensure gutters are clean and secure. Leaves and debris accumulate, causing a damming effect on gutters, which could lead to roof problems and water damage.
  • Proper maintenance of your furnace can help reduce the risk of puffbacks.

When winter weather strikes, SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth strikes back.

Black soot on your walls can be caused by burning candles in your home.

12/10/2019 (Permalink)

Purple candle with smoke all around it with a black background. Smoke damage in your home can be caused by burning candles.

Insurance and commercial property management companies have noted an increase in claims due to black spot stains on ceilings, walls, furniture, content and HVAC filters from previously unidentified sources. The problem is referred to as “black soot deposition” (BSD) and, as research indicates, it is frequently caused by a common household decorative item.

There is no evidence of a sudden or accidental source for BSD, such as malfunctioning furnaces, gas water heaters, cigarette smoke or cooking by-products. Until recently, there was little compelling evidence to assign proper blame for the source of BSD. Tests have confirmed, however, it is very possible decorative scented candles are a primary culprit.

Low-quality candles often to blame

Research indicates increased BSD is often the result of candle manufacturers adding additional fragrance oils to their products, along with improper wick trimming by customers. Many fragrance oils are not suitable for combustion and do not burn cleanly. It also appears that many amateur candle-makers have entered the expanding market to capitalize on the current popularity of candles without proper training or experience.  The outcome is an abundance of low-quality candles burning in many homes and a corresponding increase in the frequency of indoor soot deposits.

Potential dangers to structure and health

The number of aromatic candle manufacturers, professional and amateur, grows each year. A number of these introduce candles to their product line without the knowledge necessary to produce a safe and clean-burning product. Chemical testing provides conclusive evidence that emissions from some burning candles contain more than twenty volatile organic compounds, lead and a significant amount of carbon.

Burning scented candles inside homes, apartments and commercial buildings can present serious health hazards to those living and working there. It can also mean damage to ventilation systems, furnishing and content. Evidence suggests breathing even one micron of particulate soot can be hazardous. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and American Lung Association (ALA) have determined breathing particulate matter 2.5 microns or smaller is detrimental to human health. These particles are dangerous because they are inhaled deeply into the lungs, causing irritation and respiratory problems. Those at extra risk include people with heart or lung disease, children and the elderly.

Ice Dams can create problems for your property,

12/10/2019 (Permalink)

Icicles hanging from a snow covered roof top. Don't let ice dams create problems for you.

You never know when a winter storm may threaten to bring ice damage to your home or business. Ice storms are hard to predict and harder to deal with.  You’re smart to take preventive steps to reduce or eliminate the risk of ice damage.

Of course, even the best laid plans to prevent ice damage may not eliminate all damage. The following steps will help you keep your repair costs down and allow you to keep your home or business as safe as from ice damage as possible.

Avoid what others do. Other people sometimes consider ice just a minor annoyance but ice can wreak major havoc to your home or business. Even small preventive measures can make a difference. If a winter storm is coming make sure you keep your windows shut, your water taps dripping, and your cabinets open. These steps can help prevent freezing and allow you to avoid burst pipes.

No more ice dams
When water freezes, melts, and then refreezes on the edge of your roof it can create an ice dam in your gutters and on the roof. Ice dams can cause water to leak into your home and damage ceilings, walls, insulation, and other areas. To prevent ice dams consider adding insulation to your attic. Keep your gutters down spouts clear. Be sure water drains at least 10 feet away from your home’s foundation. And make sure you insulate recessed lighting fixtures so they don’t heat up your attic. After a storm, if there is a large and heavy amount of snow (8 inches or more), remove it from your roof with a roof rake. Don’t use a regular rake, because you can damage the shingles and gutters.

Prevent ice damage from becoming water damage
Left untreated, ice can lead to major water damage. Water can quickly ruin your carpets and personal items. Water damage can also cause mold and make structural damage worse. Whenever you notice water on the floor or on your walls, make sure to call SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth (217)428-2371. We can quickly clean up any ice or water damage and get the area dried out to prevent or lessen the damage. Waiting too long gives the water chance to cause more problems, and you might even deal with more damage if the water freezes again.

SERVPRO determines the source of a water damage.

12/10/2019 (Permalink)

white kitchen cabinets with sanding water on the floor. We can help clean up after any water damage.

Water damage restoration is not all about extracting water from a structure and ventilating the area so that drying can take place. Professionals in this area understand the drying theory and how to apply its principles to achieve the drying goal. So, do not make a mistake of thinking that placing drying equipment and spraying products are all that professionals do during the restoration process. We are going to look at the various aspects that professionals consider when attending to such incidents in Decatur/Forsyth.

The amount of water in your property after a water damage event is also crucial. Our SERVPRO technicians start by determining its source - it can be black water, gray water, or clean water. Clean water does not contain waste products, and it is usually water from a treated source. It can come from faulty appliances, overflowing sinks, leaking roofs and burst pipes. Fewer health risks are associated with this category of water; though, it ceases to be clean once it flows across the soil. In most cases, carpets and pads exposed to clean water are salvageable.

It's that time of year to get your ducts cleaned.

11/11/2019 (Permalink)

Inside of a a residential duct system with debris laying inside. This is a picture of a residential duct system before we cleaned it.

The air ducts in your home have a very important job. They circulate the air flow from your heating and cooling equipment throughout your home to ensure it is properly conditioned at all times. And this occurs multiple times every day.

But it’s not just the warmth or coolness that impacts you and your family; it impacts the air you breathe as well. How many hours do you spend inside? 10? 12? And that’s every day.

It’s important to ensure it is as clean as possible.

Air duct cleaning involves removing the dust and contaminants that exist within the ductwork. This includes all areas of the system, including the supply and return air ducts as well as the registers in each room. Air duct cleaning involves powerful vacuums that pull dust and debris from deep within, preventing it from moving and circulating throughout your home.

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth can clean your ducts and make your home a cleaner environment!

Give us a call today (217) 428-2371


11/11/2019 (Permalink)

Flooded roads in the front of residential homes. Know the difference between flood damage and storm damage!

Heavy rain, golf ball sized hail and high winds invade your home or business. These events cause water damage inside your property. There is flooding on the ground floor, so is this considered flood damage? Or is it storm damage because the storm caused the flooding? You are not alone if you find this confusing. 

Flood Damage

To an insurance company, there is a clear cut difference between water damage caused by a flood, and water damage caused by a storm. If you have flood insurance for your property, the following indicate that it will likely cover the damage:

  • Your property and at least one other property (or two or more acres) are normally dry, but are suddenly and temporarily flooded.
  • A natural source causes the flood waters, such as a hurricane storm surge or mudflow. Any other sudden accumulation of water rising up into your commercial property is considered a flood, including heavy rainfall that saturates and seeps up from the ground into homes or businesses.

Storm Damage

Storms cause a myriad of problems, not limited to water and wind damage. The following are common types of commercial problems caused by a storm:

  • Heavy winds, rain or hail may crack or stress the windows, foundation or roofing material, leading to water getting in. When the water damage is caused by falling rain that does not rise up from the ground into your property, it is considered caused by the storm even if the result is flood water inside your business.
  • The damage from winds, rain or other event only impact your business, not necessarily the surrounding areas.

Whether storm damage or flood damage ravages your property in Decatur, IL. storm and water restoration specialists are your first line of defense. Depending on the cause of damage and your specific policy, your commercial insurance may or may not provide coverage.

Things to do when a toliet overflows in your property!

11/11/2019 (Permalink)

a white toliet overflowing with water. Call us if this happens!

1. Turn Off and Remove the Water

To prevent water from spreading in the bathroom and to other areas of your business it’s often wise to turn off the toilet’s water supply. Generally, the sooner you can turn off the water supply, the less damage that will occur. Once the water has been turned off, it’s normally best to remove any standing water by using mops or towels. Quickly removing water will make it easier to fix the issue with the toilet and can help to prevent mold growth.

2. Unclog the Toilet

After you have taken steps to prevent sewer damage by turning off the water and drying the floor and area surrounding your toilet, you can shift your focus to unclogging the toilet. You can normally fix a clogged toilet with a plunger, but if your plunger isn’t fixing the problem, you may want to consider using an auger. Generally, your toilet should work normally after it has been unclogged.

3. Know When To Call In Professionals

If you are unable to unclog your toilet on your own, if your flooded toilet has caused major water damage or if your toilet commonly overflows, it may be necessary to contact a sewage company that can help to fix the issue. Additionally, it can be helpful to contact water damage restoration specialists if you suspect that major damage has occurred or if there has been standing water in your home for several days.

Before mitigation can begin you must locate the storm damage!

11/11/2019 (Permalink)

a roof that is missing shingles. Roof repair is one of the first steps to getting your house back to normal!

Locate the Issue

Hail and strong winds can easily cause roof damage. Before you begin mitigation, you need to inspect your roof. There are several issues to look for:

  • Broken shingles
  • Worn out or damaged flashing
  • Clogged or dented gutters

Once you know where the damage is, you can make a more informed plan for taking care of it. This can also be helpful to water restoration specialists who fix your water damage so that they can board up the area or place a tarp over it until roofers can arrive.

Mitigate Inside Damage

Once your home has water damage from a leaking roof, you are on a time clock. Both damage remediation and roof repair have to happen fairly quickly. Timely mitigation of the waterlogged materials in your home helps to prevent secondary damage such as mold growth. Then, once the remediation process is finished, it is equally important to fix the roof so that the problem doesn't keep happening every time there is a storm in your area.

Fix the Roof

Professional contractors can assess the wind damage on your roof and give you an estimate of the cost of repairs. Broken shingles will probably need to be replaced. All joints may need to be reinforced, and any loose flashing needs to be reattached or replaced. Don't put off the repairs to your roof, or you may be revisiting the whole mitigation process all over again the next time a storm hits.
Wind and hail can tear up your roof in no time, leaving your home vulnerable. Fast roof repair and damage remediation are the keys to getting your home back to normal.

Quick cleaning tasks you can do in minutes.

11/6/2019 (Permalink)

A person carrying cleaning supplies. The person is wearing yellow gloves. Cleaning don't have to take a long time if you do a little each day.

Here are 30 cleaning tasks that each take 5 minutes or less. Take advantage of a few minutes here and there to get these tasks out of the way, and cut down your preparation time for when friends come over by a lot.

1. Empty small wastebaskets.

2. Put away clean dishes.

3. Make your bed.

4. Clear the dining room/main eating table.

5. Sweep one room’s floor.

6. Clean just-used dishes.

7. Take out the trash.

8. Spray and wipe down kitchen countertops.

9. Dust surfaces of one room.

10. Put in a load of laundry.

11. Put away personal belongings in one room.

12. Organize shoes.

13. Spray down plastic toys (I use a half-vinegar, half-water mixture) and let dry.

14. Throw away old receipts and mail.

15. Dust ceiling fans and lighting fixtures.

16. Surface-clean toilet and faucets in the bathroom.

17. Put away laundry (folding is another matter).

18. Spray and wipe down mirrors.

19. Mop/wipe down floor of one room.

20. Tidy shelves on a bookcase or bedside table.

21. Gather grimy washcloths, towels and dishrags and add them to the laundry basket; replace with fresh ones.

22. Surface-clean top of oven.

23. Disinfect doorknobs and handles.
24. Rearrange kitchen cabinet shelves (or just one).

25. Take down outdated items from the refrigerator door.

26. Take off old sheets and replace with fresh ones.

27. Clear cobwebs.

28. Vacuum the carpet or spray and wipe down the hardwood floors of one room.

29. Run a clean cycle on the dishwasher or clean kitchen items you use every day, like drying racks and water pitchers.

30. Clear old or expired food from fridge and shelves.

Your pipes could be at risk of freezing this winter.

11/5/2019 (Permalink)

At What Temperature Do Pipes Freeze?

The freezing temperature of water is 32 degrees Fahrenheit. The pipes inside your home, however, are protected from exterior freezing temperatures through your home's insulation. What this means is that it on days where it is 32 degrees outside, it does not necessarily mean that your pipes will freeze.

Typically, your home's pipes begin to freeze when the outside temperature is at least 20 degrees Fahrenheit. Again, this depends on your geographical location. For example, areas that expect lower temperatures have water pipes that are better insulated in inner parts of your home, compared to other areas.

How Long Does It Take For Pipes to Freeze and Burst?

The first thing to think about when answering this question is, what is the exact temperature outside and how long will is it predicted to stay that temperature or lower? As a general rule of thumb, in order for your home's water pipes to freeze, the outside temperature needs to be below 20 degrees, for a total of at least six consecutive hours. How long it will take for your pipes to freeze and burst also depends on your home's insulation, and how deep inside your home your water pipes are located. For example, if you live in a geographical location that usually does not suffer from cold winters, chances are that your water pipes do not have that much insulation to protect them from extreme temperatures. In such cases, the time that it may take for your pipes to freeze and burst may in fact be lower.

Commercial Fire damage in a local factory

11/5/2019 (Permalink)

Office space that is damaged from fire and soot. This is a picture of a commercial fire damage loss that we helped with.

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth helped a local factory with this fire damage. The fire was started from a battery exploding in a desk drawer. 

There is no convenient time for a fire, but if you are prepared, you can deal with the aftermath better. In case of a warehouse fire, a lot needs to be done to restore the property to its preloss condition. Apart from removing charred remains of the contents that once occupied the expansive space, the structure also requires cleaning and any damaged areas fixed. Working with restorers can help reduce the cost of your claim by minimizing the number of items that need replacement. Knowing the right restorers in Bow before a fire happens is an important aspect of preparedness.

Seeing everything covered in soot and other fire residues might tempt you to throw every item out and replace them with new ones. However, the cost involved is prohibitive of such actions. You can reduce the costs through resurfacing of some items. Common ways to resurface affected items include repainting, refinishing or covering upholstered surfaces afresh. The cheapest option though is cleaning. When our SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth technicians visit your affected property, we do a thorough inspection to establish which areas can be cleaned thus reducing the costs you incur.

Give us a call anytime 24/7

(217) 428-2371

Tips to help you prepare your business for the holiday season!

11/4/2019 (Permalink)

red and black colored present with a banner that says holiday shop on it. The holiday season is upon us!

Here are 5 tips to get you ready for the holiday season:

1. Hire extra help. It may seem obvious, but September is when you hire people so you have plenty of time to assess if they are a fit for your business. Make sure you let them know that whether someone stays or goes in January is determined over the next several weeks.

2. Train everyone. Holiday help often gets less attention and that’s a mistake. Training goes much further than knowing how you should be greeting your retail customer. With more people coming through your doors, how your employees engage shoppers will make the difference between hearing I’ll take it and watching them take out their smartphones to purchase from a competitor. Here are the three most important things to train:

  • How to engage a stranger
  • How to sell your merchandise
  • How to spot shoplifting behaviors

3. Set your holiday store hours. If you’re in a strip center or shopping mall, these should be already set by your landlord; if not, demand them now. If you are a freestanding store, refer to last year’s hours but remember, the longer you are open, the more likely you’ll make more sales. Post your hours now in the back room so your employees know how to plan.

4. Set staff schedule around your busiest times.  You schedule for the traffic, then fill the need. The less shoppers have to wait, the more likely they will enjoy your shopping experience. Create the necessary shifts to create an engaging customer experience and hire to fill it; don’t hire employees then create a schedule when they can work. And don’t go lean - associates get sick, emergencies come up, etc. Bad customer service examples are littered with complaints that there was no one to wait on me

5. Make sales a daily focus. The best retail crews make sales a daily focus with a huddle before shifts start. Role-playing how-to add-on, the benefits of the most expensive items you carry, how to open a Window of Contact can all be done in a five-minute start of every day huddle. Make huddling a habit now and it will pay off big time in December. Remember, you don’t hire people for tasks, you hire them to sell your merchandise.

How to stop flooding after the snow melts.

11/4/2019 (Permalink)

Snow melting on grass. Be prepared for snow melt this season!

How to stop your property from flooding when the snow melts

Here in Decatur, we’re all familiar with cold, snow-heavy winters. Over time the buildup of snow can cover our yards and create massive drifts leaning up against the exterior walls of our homes.

While this may help to insulate us from subzero temperatures it can also cause serious flooding as all that snow melts in the early stages of spring. With a little foresight and prevention, you can avoid flooding in your home.

Flooding Damage

Before we get into prevention it’s important to know what the negatives are if flooding does occur:

  • water damage to furniture and floors
  • warped wood and floorboards
  • clogged drains
  • mold buildup
  • electrical issues
  • insurance claims and premium increases
  • etc.

The losses you can experience could even go beyond simple costs. Most families store photo albums, heirlooms, and priceless memories in their basements. Flood waters will find those keepsakes and destroy them if you’re not careful.

The time and money needed to clean up after a flood far outweighs the effort needed to stop the problem before it starts.

Tips to Prevent Flooding!

Use these tips to keep help prevent flooding in your Decatur home. 

  1. Shovel snow away from your foundation paying special attention to ground level windows and doors
  2. Clear drainage areas around your home of snow so water, if it does get in, can get back out
  3. Check for leaks in the walls, windows, and foundation of your home. Repair any cracks you find to keep the water out
  4. In warmer months inspect the grade around your house. Make adjustments when necessary to ensure that the ground slopes away from the foundation of your home
  5. Keep shoveled snow from your driveway and yard on your own property. Street drains need to stay open to do their job properly. The same principle applies to community catch basins
  6. Check the garden beds around your home and make sure they don’t create dams that retain water, forcing it towards your home. Extra garden soil may be required to fix this problem

Prepare a winter supply kit this season

11/4/2019 (Permalink)

Navy blue and red jumper cables on a light blue background. Get a head start on being prepared for this upcoming winter.

Create an emergency car kit.

It is best to avoid traveling in winter storms, but if travel is necessary be prepared with the items on this checklist:

  • Cell phone, portable charger, and extra batteries
  • Items to stay warm such as extra hats, coats, mittens, and blankets
  • Windshield scraper
  • Shovel
  • Battery-powered radio with extra batteries
  • Flashlight with extra batteries
  • Water and snack food
  • First aid kit with any necessary medications and a pocket knife
  • Tow chains or rope
  • Tire chains
  • Canned compressed air with sealant for emergency tire repair
  • Cat litter or sand to help tires get traction, or road salt to melt ice
  • Booster cables with fully charged battery or jumper cables
  • Hazard or other reflectors
  • Bright colored flag or help signs, emergency distress flag, and/or emergency flares
  • Road maps
  • Waterproof matches and a can to melt snow for water

Be safe during storms with these helpful tips!

10/17/2019 (Permalink)

Downed power lines from a tree falling on them. Be safe during and after a storm.

Be Prepared

When a severe storm is approaching, tune into a local TV or radio broadcast covering the storm and follow evacuation orders, if they are issued. Check your emergency supplies and make sure you have enough water for everyone in your home, typically 1 gallon of water per person, per day for at least 3 days. Fill up your bathtubs with clean water. Turn your refrigerator and freezer up to the maximum setting so your food will stay cold for as long as possible in the event of a power outage. If you have storm shutters on your windows, make sure they are closed and secured. If not you can use pre-cut plywood to cover exposed glass. To prevent damage from flying objects, bring outdoor furniture, tools, pots and toys in from outside. Secure important documents, photographs and other valuables in a waterproof and fireproof case.

Power Outage

During an outage, Safe Electricity recommends turning off electrical appliances and unplugging major electronics, including computers and televisions. Power sometimes comes back in surges, which can damage electronics. Your circuits could overload when power returns if all your electrical items are on. Leave one light on to indicate that power is back on. Wait a few minutes and then turn on other appliances and equipment—one at a time.

If you use a standby generator, take proper safety precautions. Always read and follow all manufacturer operating instructions. There should be nothing plugged into the generator when you turn it on. This prevents a surge from damaging your generator and appliances. Operate generators in well-ventilated, outdoor, dry areas. Never attach a temporary generator to a circuit breaker, fuse, or outlet; plug items into the generator once it’s operating.

Permanent generators should be wired into a house by a qualified electrician and include a transfer switch to prevent feeding electricity back into overhead lines, which can be deadly for linemen.

To help you get through, have a storm kit prepared. Keep the kit in a cool, dry place, and make sure all members of the family know where it is.

5 ways to make your office cleaner.

10/16/2019 (Permalink)

A person mopping hardwood floor in an office. Keep your office space clean.

Top things that need to be cleaned in an office or public place.

1. Clean and disinfect telephone, Kiosk touch screen:

  • Spray disinfectant on a dry cloth and clean telephone mouth piece, ear piece and telephone instrument.

  • Repeat the same procedure on all house phones and telephone receivers on the fax machine.

  • Wipe the kiosk touch screen and remove finger print marks using recommended micro fiber cloth.


2. Clean stairway handrails:

  • Remove cob webs, dirt’s etc before cleaning the handrails.

  • Apply cleaning solution and wipe the handrails.

  • If mild detergents are used then wipe handrails with a wet cloth to rinse away them away.

3. Clean all glass surfaces and windows:

  • Spray windows and glass surfaces with water or appropriate cleaning solution.

  • Use a squeegee and pull down from top to bottom.

  • Overlap each stroke slightly to remove all water or cleaning solution.

  • Use a lint free duster to wipe the glass surface so as to leave the entire glass surface shiny.

4. Carpet and furniture upholstery vacuuming:

  • Furniture is to be dusted and all the upholstery is vacuumed cleaned.

  • Connect the appropriate cleaning attachment for vacuuming upholstered furniture’s.

  • Vacuum furniture arm rest, seat back and the area behind the seat back.

  • Use a heavy duty vacuum cleaner to vacuum all the carpeted area on the Lobby / Front office.

  • Vacuum under desks and other areas, Move furniture as and when required.

  • Once cleaning is completed remove the vacuum dust bag and store the vacuum cleaner on the pantry.

5. Mop and Sweep lobby floor:

  • Sweep the lobby floor thoroughly.

  • Place appropriate signage to warn the guest before mopping lobby floor.

  • Mop with a damp cloth to remove all dust and dirt from the surface.

  • Buff the lobby once in a day also the dustbins and ashtrays are cleared time to time.

  • Clean all marble / tile /wood skirting with a damp cloth daily.

  • Sweep lobby floor on a regular interval and also when requested by the front office team.


Pumpkin Display SAFETY

10/16/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO logo on the front of a pumpkin. SERVPRO mascots carving the logo. Have a safe and fun Halloween.

Deck, Patio, or Porch Safety

When our jack-o'-lanterns are ready for display, we often set them out on decks, patios, or porches. In so doing, we may be unwittingly inviting rodents and stinging insects to the home, as these pests are drawn to the now exposed soft inner flesh of the jack-o'-lanterns. Of the two, the insects are the more dangerous if you're allergic to hornet or yellow jacket stings. To counteract the threat, set out insect traps.

As carved pumpkins begin to rot (they can do so quite rapidly), the issue of their slipperiness again becomes a cause for concern. The problem is now exacerbated by the proximity of the carved pumpkins to doors leading inside from decks, patios, or porches. One morning, without watching where you're going, you could open the door, begin to descend the porch stairs, step on a piece of rotted jack-o'-lantern flesh, and take a nasty spill. Worse yet, a stranger could take a similar spill on your porch and sue you.

Illuminating Carved Pumpkins

Further safety issues arise when your intent is to illuminate carved pumpkins. Candles have been used traditionally to illuminate jack-o'-lanterns. But the open flame of a candle poses a fire hazard. If you're going to illuminate carved pumpkins on your deck, patio, or porch using candles, take these safety precautions:

  • Don't leave them unattended.
  • Be thorough in your leaf removal efforts, so there'll be less flammable material around to catch fire.
  • Don't leave them on your deck, patio, or porch during trick-or-treating hours, as kids' costumes may be flammable.

A safer option for illuminating jack-o'-lanterns is to use glow sticks, which can be bought at party supply stores. With glow sticks, there are no flame, cord, or batteries to worry about, and they're waterproof. To activate them, bend them to break the internal glass capsule.

How to remove spots from your garage floor.

10/16/2019 (Permalink)

A person cleaning grease off a garage floor with soap and a scrub brush. Keep your garage floor looking good.

If you keep your car in the garage, chances are you'll see a few oil stains on the garage floor before long. If you want to keep your garage clean, and not track in oil and its toxins into your house, you'll want to remove those stains. Removing oil stains from a garage floor isn't as difficult as you might think, but it does take a little work. Here are a few methods:

Clay cat-litter, dish soap, and a quality wire scrub brush: 

Using these in three easy steps will remove an oil stain from a concrete floor.

Step 1: Absorption.
Cover the stain in clay cat-litter. Remove as much of the oil from the spot as possible before you start scrubbing. Clay litter, not clumping cat-litter, will absorb a lot after letting it sit for as long as possible -- up to two days. Then sweep it up.

Step 2: Saturate.
Saturate the stain with your cleaning solution, in this case liquid dish soap to cut the grease and break up the stain. Cover the stain in liquid soap and let it sit for one hour.

Step 3: Scrub.
Oil stains in a porous material such as concrete require a bit of elbow grease. Using the right tools will save your arms a lot of strain, so buy a quality wire scrub brush. Work the brush in a circular motion, reapplying soap and adding a little water if needed. Rinse the soap away with clean water and let the area air dry.

Dry laundry detergents: Scrubbing a concrete floor with a basic dry laundry detergent will also remove oil stains. 

Coca-Cola: The phosphorous in the soda is like acid and eats up the grease. Finish the process by scrubbing the area with baking soda to clean up the color stain.

Make sure you change your furnace filter this season.

10/15/2019 (Permalink)

A person replacing a furnace filter in a furnace. Change your filter regularly!

Changing your furnace filter regularly ensures the air in your home will remain clear of dust and other contaminates. If you don’t change your filter, it will fill up and not be able to trap new particles. A full filter will not be able prevent additional dirt and debris from circulating through your home, causing your family to breathe more dust and allergens on a daily basis. Additionally, a full furnace filter causes the motor on your furnace/hvac system to have to work harder, and it will subsequently become less efficient. Even a fire could happen. 

Frequently Open Windows and Doors
Windows and doors left open allow dust and contaminates from the outside air to accumulate in your home and put an added layer of filth on your filters. If your windows and doors are often left open, one and two-inch filters will need to be replaced monthly, four-inch filters every two months and five-inch filters every three months.

If you have furry pets living in your home, this will shorten the life of your furnace filter. For one animal living at home, you should change your filter every two months for a one or two-inch filter, four months for a four-inch filter and six months for a five-inch filter.

The more animals living in your home, the shorter your filter is going to last. Having multiple animals means you should change a one or two-inch filter out every month, a four-inch filter every two months and a five-inch filter every three months.

If you have smokers in your home, this will have an effect on your filter as well. The more smokers you have, the shorter your filter life will be. If you have only one smoker in the house, you can get away with changing out a one or two-inch filter every two months, a four-inch filter every four months and a five-inch filter every six months. If you have multiple smokers in the house, you’ll need to adjust those numbers to once a month for one to two-inch filters, two months for four-inch filters and three months for five-inch filters.

Heater Fan
The frequency at which your heater fan is running will affect how often you need to replace your filter. If your heater fan is on constantly, you’ll need to change your filter each month, having it on sometimes will be every two months and never having it on can be every three months.

Excess dust is another factor that can shorten the life of your furnace filter. If your house is one that has a lot of dust, you’ll need to change one and two-inch filters out every month, four-inch filters every two months and five-inch filters every three months.

If anyone in your home has allergies, they will benefit from more frequent air filter changes.

Staying mindful of the factors that play a role in the air quality inside your home is a good measurement for how often your furnace filters need to be replaced. Keeping new filters in your furnace will help ensure that your furnace runs smoothly and efficiently and, most importantly, the air you and your family breathes is as clean as possible.

Got a mess after new construction or renovation? SERVPRO can clean it.

10/14/2019 (Permalink)

An empty room full of dust after the drywall was sanded. Let us tackle your mess!

Whether you are building a new commercial structure from the ground up, or simply taking on a long overdue renovation project, it is a big job!  The entire construction process can be lengthy, stressful and messy!  After the job is complete you may be left with an even bigger mess to cleanup before you get your business up and running.  Let SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth take care of that headache for you.  Our full line of specialized cleaning services includes post-construction cleaning.  You wouldn’t hire a car mechanic to repair an airplane, so why hire a maid service to tackle the big stuff?  You need a specialist with the staff, equipment and techniques to handle a large job.  Our highly trained team members will clean every inch of your newly finished project and make it shine for your opening day. 

Call SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth to tackle your mess! 24/7 we are always here. (217) 428-2371

We strive for positive Residential and Commercial reviews.

10/14/2019 (Permalink)

gold stars in a pile with a gray background. We love happy customers!

We strive every day to ensure that our quality of service is up to the highest standard and we are always pleased to get positive feedback from our happy customers!

Here are just a few of our customer reviews:

The SERVPRO staff came out and a gave me a quote on a water damage quickly. Nice and Friendly people to work with. Very professional!

-Samantha G.

They came out fast to evaluate my damage I had at my house. They were polite and very helpful. I would call them again.

-Jessica B.

This company was there when we need a helping hand. They secured our business and we were able to get back home in no time. If you ever need a board up job done they are the people to call. Great customer service and got the job done fast. I would  use them again and again.  

-Local business Decatur, IL.

If you experience water damage, fire damage, or mold in your home or office call SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth at (217) 428-2371. We are here to help and care for not only your home or office but for you as an individual. We are a family owned business and know that each job is not simply a job, but is someone allowing us to come into their lives during a very stressful event. Our ultimate goal is to help make it a little less stressful on you.

Things to know when a disaster strikes your business or property!

10/14/2019 (Permalink)

Water pouring from a ceiling in an office. Act fast when this happens!

Good things to know when a disaster strikes your business or property:


In most cases you have 24 to 48 hours to clean up the water and get the house dry before mold spores start to grow to dangerous levels. Make a phone call immediately: to SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth. When you call the insurance company, you should know what caused the flood, since your policy may not cover all types of flooding. 


You may think that you can simply clean up the water and be done with the issue. However, if carpeting and the pad underneath was covered in the flood, you may have to discard the carpet. SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth will be able to tell you if the carpeting is not salvageable. In some cases, SERVPRO may be able to dry out the carpet and padding. Sheetrock also retains moisture and will mold quickly.

 SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth

Available 24/7

(217) 428-2371

Fall Yard Cleanup

10/10/2019 (Permalink)

A rake in a pile of leaves. Cleaning up your yard before winter can make for a beautiful yard in the spring.

Fall means football games and visits to the local pumpkin patch. It also means it’s time to get your yard ready for winter. The right preparation now will save you time and energy when spring rolls around, and will keep you and your family safe in the yard year-round. Make sure you get the most out of your yard next year by following our checklist of fall cleanup musts.

1. Clean out debris.

Fallen leaves and weeds are the perfect place for pests to settle in for the winter. Clear out flower beds to keep the critters at bay. Pay special attention to rose beds, as their foliage can foster disease over the winter.

2. Till the vegetable garden.

After the final harvest, pull out old vegetable plants, remove debris, and completely till the whole plot. If you compost, now is the time to add a layer of compost to help nurture your soil for planting next spring.

3. Trim Rogue Branches.

Trim up any large or out-of-place tree branches that may cause trouble during the winter. You don’t want any branches breaking and falling during the snowfall to come.

4. Clean out the gutters.

Not all fall cleanup is in the yard. This is the perfect time to clear leaves and other debris from rain gutters. Check for proper drainage, clear out any blockages with a small garden trowel, and rinse with a hose.

5. Dry everything out.

Drain all water from hoses, fountains, and drip irrigation systems, and store them in a dry place. Water left standing over the winter may damage your equipment.

6. Aerate.

Break up soil to keep water from pooling and guarantee that nutrients will reach the roots over the winter. A garden fork will do the job for small yards, but larger yards may require a walk-behind aerator, which should be available to rent for a reasonable price.

7. Feed the lawn.

Send your yard into winter with the nutrients it needs to survive the long, cold sleep. Add a fall lawn fertilizer with high phosphorous content to encourage root growth and enjoy a lush, green lawn come spring.

8. Rake and mulch.

Don’t let fallen leaves get the best of you; if left unattended they can suffocate the grass. Rake them up, shred them, and use them as mulch for young trees, shrubs, and flower beds. You might even be able to skip the raking part if you use a lawn mower to mulch the leaves in your yard.

9. Prune trees and shrubs.

Trim any dead branches and cut back overgrown trees and bushes. If you have blooming perennials like clematis or roses, now is the time to prune them and train the branches.

10. Give it one last mow.

Set your mower to a low setting and give the lawn a close buzz before winter sets in. This helps the soil dry out more quickly in the spring, which leads to a lusher lawn.

11. Divide and cut back perennials.

If your perennials really took off this year, go ahead and spread the love. Divide plants and add them to other beds where they will also do well. This saves money and time in the spring. Fall-blooming perennials like chrysanthemums shouldn’t be divided now — wait and divide them in the spring.

12. Protect cold-sensitive plants.

Keep sensitive perennials, shrubs, and roses in top shape through the cold days of winter. Add mulch to the base and wrap plants in cloth barriers to prevent damage from freezing. Depending on the hardiness of the plant and your climate, you can use a single sheet or blanket or wrap them in a combination of cloth and plastic.

13. Plant bulbs, shrubs, and fall annuals.

Some plants do best when planted in the fall. If you want to add new shrubs or spring bulbs like hyacinth, now is the time to get them in the ground. Fall annuals like pansies are also a great addition to keep some color in your yard as other plants go to sleep.

14. Protect the deck.

Prevent the growth of mold and mildew by giving the deck a good power wash. If you don’t have a pressure washer, you can rent one from a garden store. Once the deck is clean and dry, add a weatherproofing stain to protect the wood from moisture damage over the winter.

15. Clean tools and store them.

Don’t throw your gardening tools in the shed and forget about them until spring. Take time to give them a good cleaning and add a light coat of oil to prevent rust during the cold season.

If you follow this checklist you’re bound to have a wonderfully winterized yard that will be ready to wow you with lush, green bounty once the warm weather returns.


10/9/2019 (Permalink)

A stainless steel refrigerator Inspect your refrigerator water line on a regular basis.

Home insurance only cover water damages that occur suddenly or accidentally in your home. In the case of a water damage that occurred from a broken water line of the refrigerator, it is considered as a sudden occurrence so the water damage cost and the repair fee for the damaged refrigerator will be covered. For the insurance company, water damage refers to damage caused by water that did not enter into your home from the outside such as the ground. The water damage must be caused by clean water source in order to be eligible for coverage by the home insurance company. Anything that is destroyed as a result of the broken water line will be covered for example damaged flooring.

However, you must keep in mind that there are certain requirements in your policy that you need to follow in order to claim the compensation. For example,
 if you are going on a holiday trip for a few days, you must turn off the water supply in your house. If you don’t and the water line burst, it will be your own fault and the claim can be denied. Besides, you should also hire someone to check your house daily and make sure everything is all right. This can be used as a proof to your insurance company that everything is in good condition when the water line burst so that your claim can be approved quickly.

The water damage will not be covered if your refrigerator’s water line broke as a result of an unresolved maintenance problem. All appliances will experience wear and tear and your refrigerator can broke down one day. It is your responsibility to hire a professional to inspect your appliances and fix any issue promptly to ensure that they are in good working condition at all times. In this situation, the insurance company will properly pay out the compensation for fixing the flooring that is damaged by the water but it will not cover the cost of the refrigerator.

The water damage coverage requirements vary across different insurance companies so you should check with them yourself. You can first ask your broker whether the claim will be approved before filing it to the insurance company. The compensation that the insurance company releases will not include the deductible amount as well as the spoiled food in the refrigerator. Anything that is not worth filing will not be covered by the insurance.

You can always confirm with your insurance agent about water damage that is covered/not covered by the insurance policy. Home insurance only provides basic coverage for water damage that occurs in the house. If possible, you should purchase additional coverage like a flood insurance to offer more protection for your home from water damage.

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth can help make it "Like it never even happened."

(217) 428-2371

Make sure your fireplace chimney is clean this season!

10/7/2019 (Permalink)

Fireplace Chimney with fire shooting out the top of it on the roof top. Prevent a chimney fire by having a yearly cleaning done.

When Do I Need A Chimney Inspection?

If you haven’t had your chimney inspected in a year or more, if you are having any performance issues with your chimney, fireplace or heating system or if you have recently purchased the home you should schedule an inspection. Don’t wait – waiting almost always results in additional repairs, and unfortunately sometimes in property loss. Every year in the US homeowners lose over 200 million dollars as a result of continuing to use unsafe systems.

Another important time to get your venting systems inspected is when you have upgraded or changed heating systems or added a stove or insert. An inspection will make sure that your chimney, lining and venting systems are adequate and in working order to handle the new changes.

If you have not used your fireplace in a long time, pests may have built nests that could clog your flue or chimney chamber. Winter freeze cycles and moisture combine to take an annual toll on masonry and liner materials too. Over several years the deterioration will eventually require attention. Normal wear and tear that is left unchecked will affect the performance of your system. The longer the defects go without being addressed, the more expensive the repairs are likely to be.

Bottom line is – staying on top of your systems is not only the smartest and safest choice, it ends up being the most cost-effective too.

If you ever need cleanup after a fire damage give us a call anytime 24/7! (217) 428-2371

Beware of dangers after a house fire.

10/2/2019 (Permalink)

A residential home on fire. Call us for cleanup after a house fire. We are here to help!

If your home has recently suffered from a horrible fire, don’t hesitate to take action in calling SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth for emergency fire damage restoration services. The smoke and soot byproducts will only spread over time and engulf additional building materials if they aren’t treated right away.

But what is worse about the smoke damage is that it can cause serious health risks. In fact, the smoke can also linger for up to several weeks following the fire. To make matters worse, these thick layers of soot and smoke will be difficult to remove, thus, requiring professional fire cleanup products.

All of the following include the health risks that can occur after a house fire:

  1. Breathing issues
  2. Skin issues
  3. Eye irritation
  4. Long-term health risks

Don't wait give us a call anytime 24/7 for any services you may need! (217) 428-2371

Be aware of powers lines after a storm.

9/26/2019 (Permalink)

Power line laying on a road Contact your local power company if you see a downed power line!

Contact your electric utility to report the outage and use caution if venturing outside after a storm:

  • Just because power lines are damaged does not mean they are dead. Every downed power line is potentially energized and dangerous until utility crews arrive on the scene to ensure power has been cut off. Downed power lines, stray wires, and debris in contact with them all have the potential to deliver a fatal shock. Stay far away and keep others away from downed power lines.
  • Never enter a flooded basement if electrical outlets are submerged. The water could be energized.
  • Do not turn power off if you must stand in water to do so. Call your electric utility and have them turn off power at the meter.
  • Before entering storm-damaged buildings, make sure electricity and gas are turned off.
  • Do not use water-damaged electric appliances, electronics and other items before having them inspected and properly restored. Electric motors in appliances should be cleaned and reconditioned before use. It may be necessary to replace some appliances and electronics.
  • If you clean-up outdoors after a storm, do not use electric equipment in wet conditions.
  • If you are driving and come across a downed power line, stay away and keep others away. Do not drive over it, as snagging the line could pull a pole and other equipment to the ground. Contact emergency personnel or your utility company to address the downed power line.
  • If you come in contact with a downed power line, do not leave the car. Wait for utility and emergency professionals to make sure the power line is de-energized before exiting the car.

Fall is here! Here are some safety tips for a bonfire.

9/26/2019 (Permalink)

Wood burning in a fire ring. Be safe!


  • Assume it’s hot – teach your children to assume anything and everything around a fire is hot. Even the metal on the chairs we sit on can become hot enough to cause a first-degree burn.
  • Keep a safe distance – teach your children to always keep a safe distance from the fire, unless they are roasting marshmallows under the direct supervision of an adult.
  • No horsing around near the fire – Accidents are more likely to happen when horsing around is involved. Keep it away from the fire.
  • Don’t poke at or throw anything into the fire – Do not allow your children to poke anything into the fire or throw anything into the fire or someone is likely to get hurt.
  • Teach them what to do if they ever catch on fire–stop, drop and roll


Choose a responsible adult not consuming alcoholic beverages to keep the fire safely contained at all times.

  • Never leave a bonfire unattended.
  • Pay attention to the wind direction and strength.
  • Keep it safe, small, and manageable.
  • Add pieces of wood to keep it burning steadily, as opposed to making the campfire bigger.

Give back to your community!

9/25/2019 (Permalink)

Colorful hands above the word volunteer! It is good for you and the community to volunteer!

At SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth we believe in giving back to the community. We encourage all our employees to do the same.

In the United States more than 62 million people volunteer every year. Many choose to give their time to volunteer work because they find it deeply rewarding. It feels good to put energy into a cause that improves your community. Volunteering can also enable you to awaken dormant skills or practice a hobby in a more meaningful way. You could make new friends, professional contacts, and probably have some fun. You may even explore a new potential career path. So, how do you start?

Identify your interests and the skills you want to use. Do you enjoy working with children? Do you like working with numbers and financial data? Do you have a soft spot in your heart for someone who has a certain type of disability? Are you skilled at conversation, cooking, fundraising, mentoring, or in another area?

Once you've identified your area of interest and the skills you’d like to use, get tactical. Find organizations who need your skills and check out their mission statement. Make sure the group’s goals align with your values. Look at financials to see how funds are allocated and make sure their affiliations line up with your intentions. Find statistics about whom they serve and how they make an impact.

Don’t over-commit. Start volunteering a little and increase your volunteer time if it’s working for you.  

Here are just a few of the ways that a little volunteering from you can make a big difference.

Tutor a Student

Today students include people of all ages--not just children. Teaching literacy to adults can change lives. Helping someone learn English can expand his or her horizons. You could tutor in an academic subject or teach others about computers and the Internet. Don’t forget life skills like cooking, sewing, budgeting, and home repairs.

Visit a Nursing Home

Many Decatur area nursing homes have plenty of residents whose families and friends are gone or not available. These residents are often lonely, desperate for conversation, and eager to connect with another person. By spending an hour or two a week you can make a huge difference in someone’s attitude and outlook on life. And you may learn something about life from those who have already traveled the journey before you.

Organize a Yard Sale for Charity

Do you enjoy tag sales? Then think about putting one together and donating the funds you raise to a local charity or nonprofit group. We bet most of the people in your town have electronics, furniture, clothes, or equipment that they’d be willing to donate to help the right cause. These items have value and can be recycled to those who will use them again.

Serve on a Community Board

Charities and community service organizations around the Decatur area compete with other bigger, for-profit businesses for the community’s attention and support. In many cases, nonprofits are at a distinct disadvantage. They may lack the resources to attract, compensate, and retain the best executive staff and administrators. If your talents are administrative, or if you have executive or board experience, your knowledge and insights could make a huge impact at a not-for-profit, community-based organization or charity.

Volunteer at a Hospital

Hospital volunteers provide crucial support to the hospital staff. Volunteers also offer comfort and convenience to patients, families, and visitors. Volunteer opportunities include everything from manning information booths, to sitting with patients, to providing a roaming book and magazine cart, or working with children. Your volunteering might also involve helping with food service or pushing wheelchairs.

The opportunities to volunteer in the Decatur area are endless. You might build a house with Habitat for Humanity. You could donate your old clothes or volunteer at a soup kitchen. Think about giving your old eyeglasses to an organization that collects them and distributes them to people in need. Or consider volunteering at a food bank or homeless shelter. Volunteering is a great way to make your community a better place.

Categories of Water Damage

9/18/2019 (Permalink)

Black water on a staircase in a house. Know the type of water damage you are dealing with.

You should know the different categories of water damages if you should ever experience one.

Assessing the severity of the damage is important for determining what is needed to start water damage repair and water removal. There are several different categories assigned to water damage. Category 1 refers to clean water, or water that does not pose a threat to humans. Possible causes of this type of damage include broken appliances or sink overflows. Category 2 water is also called gray water. This means that the water is contaminated and may cause sickness of ingested. This type of water contains microorganisms. Broken toilets, broken sump pumps, and seepage may cause category 2 water damage. Category 3 water is known as black water. This type of water is unsanitary, as it contains bacteria and other organisms that cause sickness. The possible sources of black water damage include sewage problems and contamination of standing water.

There are also several classes of water damage. The class of damage is important when assessing water damage repair options. Class 1 is the least harmful form of damage. Materials absorb very little of the water from this type of damage. Water damage repair is the easiest in this type of situation. Class 2 has a fast rate of evaporation, which means that carpets and cushions may be damaged. Water damage repair is more difficult when it involves class 2 damage. Class 3 has the fastest rate of evaporation. In this case, the water may come from broken sprinklers or other overhead sources, soaking the walls and furniture. Class 4 requires special water restoration and water removal procedures. This type of damage may affect hardwood floors, plaster, and concrete.

Storms damage can lead to a water damage in your home.

9/18/2019 (Permalink)

Water running off a roof top. Know the causes of water damages!

Water damage is a problem that most property owners dread. When it rains heavily or snow melts quickly, the risk of this type of damage increases. Water can cause thousands of dollars’ worth of damage by damaging wood furniture, upholstery, electronics, household appliances, and plumbing equipment. Water damage also increases the risk of mold growth, which is a very expensive problem to re mediate. Hiring a water damage restoration company can make the cleanup process easier to handle, as these companies employ experienced workers who know the best ways to repair or replace damaged items and help with water damage cleanup.

Causes of Water Damage

There are several possible causes of water damage. Leaky dishwashers, clogged toilets, broken pipes, broken dishwasher hoses, overflowing washing machines, leaky roofs, plumbing leaks, and foundation cracks are just some of the possible causes of water damage in homes and businesses. Floods, heavy snow, and heavy rain are other possible causes of this type of damage and can lead to having water in basements. Too much water can lead to minor problems such as water in basement areas, or it can lead to the destruction of homes and businesses. Once a home or business sustains water damage, it is important to start the water damage cleanup immediately. Starting water damage cleanup as soon as possible increases the likelihood of saving water-soaked furniture, carpets, rugs, clothing, and other items.

We do commercial water damages!

9/12/2019 (Permalink)

commercial hallway with water standing SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth can clean up any commercial water damage!

To understand the need for professional water remediation, you need to understand how water can damage your property and why professional help is important. Water spreads fast. Standing water can quickly grow into a mold problem if the water is not extracted and the affected areas dried immediately. Mold can grow in as little as 24 hours if given the right environment. Most water disasters create the perfect environment for mold to grow in. If mold does grow, the damage will become a much bigger, and more costly problem to fix.

When your business suffers from a water disaster, you need help fast! Excessive water damage could put your business out of commission until the damage has been cleaned and restored. To get your business back to business quickly, you need the help of trusted professionals who can remove any standing water, decontaminate any areas affected by contaminated water, and restore any structural damage caused by the water. 

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth is available to help 24/7!

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth Remembers 9/11.

9/11/2019 (Permalink)

Plane crashed into World Trade Center 9/11/01 Remember 9/11

Eighteen years ago on this day, September 11, 2001, our lives changed forever. We can all remember as we watched the World Trade Center in New York City being stricken by planes as terrorists attacked our country. We watched the Pentagon in Washington in flames after Flight 77 crashed into the building. Near Shanksville, Pennsylvania another plane crashed into a field. It was a day of grief that will stay in our hearts forever.

Following the attacks, reconstruction of the event was an enormous task. SERVPRO Franchise Professionals were called upon to assist with the cleanup and restoration on the Pentagon. Despite of the difficulties and emotions that involved the restoration, SERVPRO completed the process of drying over 300,000 square feet of property due to water pipes bursting. In addition, SERVPRO also provided fire, soot and smoke cleanup and restoration services.

Although reconstruction was possible, the memories will take time to heal and recover from. SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth honors the heroic actions of those who gave their lives to help others. Firefighters, policemen, first responders, and civilians all came together to respond without hesitation to save hundreds of lives. These men and women put their own lives on the line to save others. Today and every day of our lives, we remember the innocent lives that were lost during the attacks.

Tips on how to clean your Stainless steel appliances.

9/5/2019 (Permalink)

Stainless Steel appliances in a kitchen. Cleaning your appliances on a regular basis can keep them looking new.

Stainless steel appliances remain popular in American kitchens. In fact, stainless appliances outsell white and black kitchen appliances, with dishwashers, ranges, and refrigerators boasting the stainless look in a big way. (One exception is the top-freezer refrigerator category—most of those sold are white.)

The Basics on Cleaners for Stainless Steel
Avoid using harsh abrasives, scouring powders, steel wool, bleach, and ammonia, all of which can damage the finish.

Stainless Steel Cleaning Tips

Step 1: Dip a soft cloth in warm water mixed with a mild dish detergent. Wipe the surface, rinse the cloth and wipe again, then dry with a towel to prevent water spots.

Step 2: If you still see fingerprints, spray a glass cleaner onto a soft cloth and wipe fingerprints away. 

Step 3: To remove baked-on food and grease, make a paste of baking soda and warm water. Gently rub onto the surface using a soft cloth or sponge. Wipe with a clean wet cloth and towel dry. For scratches and stains, use a stainless steel cleaner and apply to the area, following directions. Rinse with a clean damp cloth, then dry.

Shying Away From Stainless?
If having to clean stainless steel lacks appeal, check out other finish options, such as that classic, white.

Useful tips for cleaning

9/5/2019 (Permalink)

A bucket of cleaning supplies being carried. Simplify cleaning with these helpful tips!

Here are 5 useful tips for those hard to reach places!   
1. Keyboard Cracks
The nooks and crannies beneath the keys of your computer’s keyboard can be tricky to clean, but a sticky note can help! First, turn your keyboard upside-down and tap on it to dislodge any loose crumbs and dirt. Then turn it back over, and run the sticky end of a sticky note in between the keys to pick up any leftover debris.

2. Window Blinds
Dusting your blinds can be a real pain, but using your kitchen tongs can make it much easier! Just grab your kitchen tongs, a couple of microfiber cleaning cloths, and some rubber bands. Wrap the cloths around the ends of your tongs and secure them in place with rubber bands. Use the cloth-covered tongs to quickly clean both the top and bottom of each slat in your blinds.

3. Faucets
The faucets in your kitchen and bathroom can get grimy with deposits, mildew, and bacteria over time. Again, an old toothbrush can be a great tool for scrubbing them clean! The scrubbing action of the toothbrush and a little bit of soapy water will help you clear out all the nooks and crannies.

4. Window Tracks
Your vacuum probably has tools for cleaning crevices, but they may not be useful in every situation. For instance, your crevice tool may not be narrow enough to fit into the tracks of your windows to vacuum them out! In these cases, try using the cardboard tube from the center of a roll of toilet paper. Tape one end to your vacuum hose, then squish the other end until it can fit into your window tracks and other narrow spaces.

5. Air Vents
To quickly clean your air vents, start by vacuuming them to remove any loose dust. Then wrap a microfiber cloth around a butter knife, and use it to remove any dust that’s still stuck between the openings of the vent!

We do board ups!

9/3/2019 (Permalink)

Boards cover windows and doors of a blue house after a fire. Keep your property safe.

If your property has experienced a fire, there are several reasons why you might want to board up structural damage or windows. In addition to keeping the external elements out of a building with fire damage, boarding up can also prevent additional losses due to looting and make the fire cleanup process easier. 

Most full-service restoration specialists offer boarding-up services. Here are four reasons to board-up after a fire.

1. There is still viable stock on the premises. If products that appear viable remain in the building, you should consider boarding up. These items may require assessment and cleaning and may not be fit for sale, but having them properly processed rather than stolen can be helpful for insurance purposes.

2. You want to protect electronics and other valuables. Depending on the extent of the fire damage, you may be able to restore some electronics or other valuable property to working condition. Loss can be far more expensive than restoration or covered replacement.

3. You need to keep out the elements. If the structure of your property has sustained extensive damage, you should try to keep the elements out. Exposure to additional water, wind, or sunlight can compound the damage caused by smoke residue and soot.

4. You want to limit soot damage. It is generally a good idea to reduce foot traffic on the scene of a recent fire. When soot gets embedded into carpeting or upholstery, it can be much more difficult to restore these materials to a pre-fire condition.

Places people forget to clean!

9/3/2019 (Permalink)

Dirt and debris built up under appliances. Clean under your appliances on a regular basis.

12 places people forget to clean!

No matter how thorough you think you are at cleaning, we bet there are a few things on this list that you're forgetting about...

Your carpet is always hoovered, your bed linen freshly washed and your work surfaces spotless, but is your house really clean? Dust, dirt and grime can build up in some unexpected places and it’s easy to forget about these spots. Luckily we’re here to point you in the right direction to ensure that going forward, your home truly is spick and span.

1. Dishwasher

You can’t expect a dirty dishwasher to produce pristine dishes, so give it a deep clean every now and then.

2. Doorframes

Give them a dust or use your vacuum nozzle as part of your regular cleaning routine.

3. TV

Use a dry microfiber cloth and a screen wipe to remove grubby fingerprints and unwanted dust.

4. Remote control

One of the most-touched objects in your home, your remote control will quickly become covered in grease, crumbs and dust.

5. Keyboards

The same applies to keyboards. Think how many germs are building up on them!

6. Brooms and mops

There’s no point cleaning with a dirty implement! Soak your broom head in water mixed with dish soap and soak your mop in water mixed with bleach. make sure they’re dry before putting them away.

7. Washing machine

Mold and residue can build up inside your washing machine, so give it some TLC every now and then.

8. Lampshades

When you’re going round with your duster, remember to give your lampshades a wipe as their a target for settling dust.

9. Underneath appliances

You’ll find all sorts of dirt and crumbs in these crevices. Shift your appliances out the way and give these surfaces a clean.

10. Cushion covers

Many cushion covers are removal and can be put in the washing machine. For those that aren’t, try using the vacuum cleaner, stop dabbing and Febreeze.

11. Shower curtain

Get rid of horrible mildew stains by putting your shower curtain in the washing machine.

12. Doorknobs, handles and switches

Given how often we touch these, it’s surprising how little we clean them.

Water damage from an upstairs apartment.

9/3/2019 (Permalink)

A resident of an apartment is looking at his ceiling as water from the upstairs apartment. Apartments leaks can happen anywhere anytime.

Who is responsible for water damage in apartments?

Unfortunately, water damage is a common issue both homeowners and renters can face. The aftermath can be devastating making the property unlivable and permanent damage may occur to personal belongings. When water damage occurs in an apartment, whether you live in cold-weather, or sunny Florida, you need to know who is responsible for the damage cost. The property owner or renter? When water damage occurs in an apartment, who is responsible for the damage cost? The property owner or renter?

Renter rights

Water damage can be unpredictable and it is important to understand your renter rights and understand who is responsible for what in such an event. In general, a landlord is responsible for maintaining the property ensuring that the apartment is livable and functioning up to code. The landlord may refuse repairs, or fail to address them quick in enough – causing further damage such as mold. In the United States, basic principles in tenant rights are in place and outline the party liable for damages.  Depending on the state, rent details can vary so check with your local housing authority.

Renters insurance

Accidents happen which is why it is essential to have renters insurance. Most places require you have it before allowing you to move in an apartment. Depending on the plan you select, coverage can vary from damages to the building, personal content and may even cover the cost of lodging while repairs are being completed.

Landlord Responsibilities

The landlord is responsible for maintaining a functional apartment ensure that it is livable. The upkeep of basic plumbing such as sinks, toilets and tubs fall on the shoulders of the landlord. Failure to maintain or repair these functions may lead to property damage and the landlord is liable due to negligence.

We are trained professionals.

8/21/2019 (Permalink)

outside of home with flood waters Don't let this happen to you!

Everyone on our team at SERVPRO are trained to clean and restore your home or business after it's incurred damage from a storm, water leak or flooding. 

We take many steps when cleaning and restoring your home or business after incurred water damage such as:

- Identify the Source/ Type of Water

- Measure Temperature and Humidity for Drying Analysis

- Survey the Extent of Damage and Inspect the Premises for Hidden Moisture

- Perform Emergency Water Extraction

- Move and Block furniture and Contents

- Inspect Carpet Pad/Carpet and Provide Service

- Apply Necessary Treatments (Disinfectants/Deodorization)

- Utilize Advanced Drying and Monitoring Equipment

- Dispose of Refuse

All of our technicians are IICRC certified and have extensive knowledge about our services and equipment. At SERVPRO we make it "Like it never even happened." If you experience water damage call SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth (217) 428-2371.

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth has many years of experience in the industy.

8/21/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO vehicle with team standing in front Our friendly staff is ready to help!

  1. Almost 30 Years’ Experience in the Industry. 
  2. We Respond Immediately When You Need Us Most

-Home emergencies don’t wait for regular business hours and neither do we. SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth provides emergency cleaning and restoration services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week—including all holidays. You can expect an immediate response time, day or night.

  1. Qualified Technicians and Team Members

-Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s Corporate Training Facility to regular IICRC industry certifications, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property. Our training program includes the following: IIRCRC training, Employee Certification training, E-Learning programs, and Continuing Education Classes.

  1. We Are Ready and Equip To Handle Any Loss Whether It Be Small or Large
  • SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth is ready to handle your loss whether it is a water loss caused from a leaky dishwasher in your home, or water loss in your commercial business caused by fire sprinklers throughout the entire structure.
  1. We Understand The Stress Of A Loss In Your Home
  • We at SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth understand the stress a hardship in your home can cause and our staff is there to make it as easy as possible. Our technicians know it is your house but treat it with respect like their own.  Our hope is to take that stress from you and make it “Like it never even happened."

We are here to help with any storm damage needs.

8/21/2019 (Permalink)

Violent weather such as storm damage can wreak havoc on buildings as well as vegetation. Wind damage can be a hazard to the structure of a building, by loosening the shingles or tiles on the roof. This can cause moisture such as rain and snow to infiltrate into the protective surface of the roof, which will result in the wood swelling and later on disintegration and becoming moldy. This outcome will lead to a sagging ceiling and further problems. Elements such as wind, rain, hail, and lightning can result in turning people’s lives upside down, this is why having a storm damage restoration service to help this type of emergency is a good option.

Here are some of the activities you can expect from the storm restoration service professionals.

  • Whether it is a business or residence, the restoration company will come to your property and their trained experts will do a thorough examination of the interior and exterior of your building. This will help them discover the level of the damage. In many cases, the restoration company will discuss the renovation plans with you and your insurance adjuster.
  • When everything is agreed upon, the work begins. Depending on what type of damage is present, this will determine the type of equipment the professional will use. In the case of flooding, they will use specialized pumps and vacuums to remove water from the affected areas.
  • Generators will be brought in to operate their dehumidifiers and air movers so mold and mildew do not have a change to make matters worse. Using customized cleaners, the specialist will then disinfect hard surfaces and shampoo salvageable carpets as well as apply deodorant to combat any odors.

If contacted in time, a storm damage restoration company will be able to rescue your building from greater structural issues, by inspecting the roof and replacing the dilapidated areas. After sealing and renovating the roof, they will then address the ceiling and restore to its former condition.

As you can see, when you suffer from natural disasters, the storm damage restoration process is something the experts can handle.  

Disinfecting a child care environment can keep everyone healthy!

8/20/2019 (Permalink)

Reduce the spread of germs!

Keeping the child care environment clean is one of the best ways to help ensure that children stay healthy. Dirty toys, bedding, linens, eating utensils, and surfaces can carry and spread germs. Regular disinfecting should be a part of the routine in a child care setting.

Getting things clean and reducing the spread of germs requires two different steps:

  1. Washing the item, using soap and water. Be sure to rinse thoroughly.
  2. Disinfecting the item. Cleaning removes dirt but does not kill all germs. To be sure germs are gone, you must disinfect them as well. The most common ways of disinfecting are as follows:
  • You can disinfect with a bleach and water solution. A solution of regular household bleach and water is an inexpensive and easy way to disinfect surfaces and objects in child care programs. The amount of bleach and water to use depends on the concentration of the bleach you choose. 
  • You can use your dishwasher. Durable plastic toys can be washed in the dishwasher. High water pressure and temperatures do a great job of removing germs.
  • You can use your washing machine. Wash cloth toys, linens, and bedding in the washing machine. Add one-half cup of chlorine bleach to the wash cycle when washing colorfast material; for non-colorfast material, add one-half cup of non-chlorinated bleach.

SERVPRO can clean up any Fire Damage!

8/20/2019 (Permalink)

We can clean up after any fire.

As if dealing with house fire and smoke damage wasn't enough, once the initial danger has passed, you also have to contend with the resulting soot that may have spread throughout your home. You'll quickly discover that soot is an eyesore that's very tough to clean, but you may not have considered the hidden dangers of soot.

Learn more about the basic science of soot, its physical properties and the hazards poor clean-up can pose so you can fully protect your home and family in the aftermath of a fire.

If it goes untreated or improperly cleaned, tiny particles of soot can be inhaled deep into the lungs. These toxic particles can cause breathing issues, including aggravated asthma, bronchitis and more severe respiratory illnesses that can restrict your ability to carry out normal activities.  

To avoid health risks and restore your home to its former stain- and odor-free glory, focus on achieving complete, thorough and proper cleaning of all soot-affected areas.

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth can clean up any fire damage! Give us a Call today!

(217) 428-2371

Preparing your home and property for a storm is very important.

8/20/2019 (Permalink)

Be Prepared

Preparing your home and property for storm damage is important. Just about every region has some type of weather event that can cause damage. This essay will focus on hurricane damage, wind damage, hail damage, tornado damage, cold damage, heat damage and how to prepare for each.

While not as prolonged as hurricane winds, thunderstorm winds can also cause significant damage. As the storm approaches it is a good idea to secure as loose object in the yard. Damage can occur as the wind throws these objects at the home. Stay inside though if the storm is already hitting and you don't have time. As with hurricanes, significant damage is caused by fallen tree branches. Make sure tree branches are pruned and the weakest branches removed. If you have time, have the car protected in a garage if possible.

Hail damage is notorious for causing dents on cars and weakening roofs and shingles. If you have time before the storm hits make sure the car is placed in a covered area. After a hail storm, make sure no water is leaking through the roof. An accumulation of wind and hail damage can weaken a roof to the point that leaks develop. When the roof needs replacement consider getting a roof and shingles that better protect from wind and hail damage.

Tornado damage is the most difficult to prepare for since the winds are so extreme that destruction can be very severe even to even well build homes. When a significant tornado approaches the primary thing to do is to protect your life. If a tornado warning is issued or you have evidence a violent storm is approaching, go to center most point in the building such as a closet or bathtub on the lowest flood and while covering yourself crouch down as low as possible. Stay away from windows and listen to battery operated NOAA weather radio for updates. For a weak tornado the home can survive fairly well if it is well build and has a reinforced roof.

Cold and heat damage are preventable in many cases. If there is going to be a freeze make sure vegetation that can't handle a freeze is brought inside or protected so that the temperature will stay above freezing. Make sure to buy outdoor plants that will survive in the long term in your climate. Make sure to go through the necessary precautions to prevent pipes from freezing. If you leave the home make sure it stays heated. Pipes can freeze when the house is not heated and a big cold spell hits. Sun damage can occur to plants that require shade but get an excess of direct sunlight. Keep in mind which places around the home have the most direct sunlight and plant plants accordingly.

Common Cleaning mistakes you might not know you are doing.

8/15/2019 (Permalink)

Here are 5 common cleaning mistakes to avoid:

1. Scrubbing carpet spills

If you drop something like coffee or red wine on the carpet, don’t immediately rush to scrub it off.

Scrubbing untwists carpet fibers and distorts the pile, and once the damage is done, it's permanent. So although you might be able to eventually get the stain out of the carpet, you won't be able to untwist the carpet fibers.

Instead of scrubbing, blot the spill with a paper towel until it’s dry, and then treat it with stain remover, after testing the product in a hidden area of carpet to make sure it won't fade the color.

2. Too much water

Don’t use too much water on upholstery - some fabrics can be damaged by water, or won’t dry out properly, causing mildew. In addition, avoid applying water to metal components, as this could result in rust.

3. Dusting with a dry rag

Using a dry rag will just move dust and dirt around and scratch surfaces. Use a soft duster or a microfiber cloth, which is your best bet because it grabs and holds onto particles.

4. Combining cleaning products

More isn’t always better - combining common cleaning products like ammonia, bleach and detergent is a mistake, as not only can it potentially damage surfaces like carpet and laminate, but it can create fumes that can damage your health.

5. Vacuuming first

Vacuuming before cleaning surfaces means you’ll probably have to vacuum again afterwards, as you’ll have knocked dirt and dust onto the floor. Always dust and wipe down all surfaces prior to vacuuming.

Be prepared for severe weather!

8/15/2019 (Permalink)

Be prepared!

Watch vs. Warnings

With the severe weather season underway, now is a good time to go over the difference between tornado and severe thunderstorm watches and warnings. A WATCH means that the potential exists for the development of severe thunderstorms or tornadoes, depending upon the specific type of watch issued. In the case of a tornado watch, this DOES NOT mean that a tornado has been seen or even indicated on radar...it just means that conditions are favorable for the formation of tornadoes in thunderstorms. Similarly, a severe thunderstorm watch means that conditions are just conducive for the development of severe weather, and DOES NOT indicate that severe weather has been reported. While no immediate action on the part of the general public is required for the issuance of a watch, citizens should keep up to date on the current weather situation and be prepared to seek shelter if necessary.

A WARNING, on the other hand, requires more immediate action and should be taken seriously. A severe thunderstorm warning indicates that severe weather is imminent in your area or is already occurring (based on either human observation or doppler radar). The term severe refers to hail greater than or equal to 1.00" in diameter and/or wind gusts that meet or exceed 58 mph. Although these storms can also be associated with dangerous cloud to ground lightning or heavy rainfall that is capable of causing flash flooding, neither of these two items serve as criteria for a severe thunderstorm warning being issued.

Why cleanup is so important!

8/14/2019 (Permalink)

Call us when an emergency strikes!

Water Damage Restoration 101

When natural disasters like floods or fire take place in your home or office, dealing with water damage is typically one of the property owner's most pressing concerns. If you do not address the excess water in your home or office immediately, you could find yourself dealing with a wide range of unwanted health and safety issues. To ensure that your property is restored correctly and quickly, you need to attain professional water damage remediation services. Here are just a few benefits that result from taking this course of action:

 Preventing Mold Growth

 Attaining professional restoration services help prevent mold growth. When you have excess standing water in your home or office, you create the damp setting that mold likes to thrive in. When you hire a team of remediation specialists, they will utilize advanced methodologies and cutting edge equipment to quickly remove excess water from your property. This work is extremely important given that continual exposure to mold can compromise your health. Some of the health issues that individuals who are exposed to mold tend to experience include chronic fatigue, asthma attacks, dizziness, vision complications, diarrhea, nausea, difficulty breathing, and lung challenges. Ongoing exposure to mold growth can also lead to cancer and other pathogenic diseases.

 Preventing Structural Damage

 When you hire a team of restoration experts, they will help prevent your home or office from falling prey to structural damage. If excess water starts to seep into your property's structure, the result can be the deterioration of its stability and strength. This is why individuals who have been subjected to water damage often find that they cannot immediately reenter their property following a natural disaster. Restoration professionals possess the equipment and expertise necessary to recognize and remediate signs of damage quickly. In so doing, they can prevent deep, permanent structural damage from transpiring.

Water cleanup is a complex, time-consuming task that should never be completed by a property owner. Instead, you should contact a team of industry professionals to complete the remediation process on your behalf. The best company to call for excellent, effective water damage restoration is SERVPRO. We offer 24/7 emergency assistance, excellent customer service, and affordable rates. Moreover, all of our technicians are IICRC-certified

Locally Owned Company with National Resources

 As a locally owned and operated business, SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth is strategically located to respond quickly to your flood and water emergency event. Call us today! (217) 428-2371

Any type of leak can cause property damage and create safety and health concerns.

8/14/2019 (Permalink)

When a disaster strikes we are here to help!

Flooding, plumbing leaks and water damage can happen at any time. Internal and external forces can harm valuable items, carpets, furnishings and structural components. Even in a well-maintained building, pipes can break, toilets can overflow and water can seep behind walls and under floors. Waterlines for refrigerators often create concealed leaks that go unnoticed until mold and mildew have accumulated behind the appliance. The same is true for washing machine hoses that have cracked or become clogged. Water damage can also occur after a violent storm, a flood or several days of steady rain. Basements and lower levels are especially prone to this type of damage. 

Water Damage Statistics Any type of leak can cause property damage and create safety and health concerns. It's easy to think that water damage or storm damage won't happen to you, but statistics say otherwise. Water damage is among the most common causes of property insurance claims. One in every 55 homes will have a water-related property damage claim this year. While you cannot stop a storm, you can follow these steps to prevent water damage.

Kitchens and Bathrooms Kitchens and bathrooms are susceptible to water damage due to the amount of plumbing in these areas. Fix leaking or dripping pipes promptly, and be aware of elevated humidity levels that could indicate an underlying plumbing problem. Maintain caulk around showers and bathtubs. Water that passes through gaps can penetrate walls and subfloors. If this sealant has cracked or separated, have it repaired. This is a task that you can probably complete yourself. 

Appliances Inspect waterlines for appliances at least once per year. If hoses are brittle, cracked or crimped, replace them before they fail. Turn off the water supply for all appliances before traveling out of town. Pay special attention to hoses for washing machines, refrigerators and ice makers. Since washing machines have inlet hoses and drains, they are especially prone to leaks. 

Protecting Pipes Protect plumbing from freezing by insulating pipes that travel along exterior walls or through unheated crawlspaces. On cold nights, open cupboard doors, and let faucets drip. Before winter, drain all watering hoses, and turn off valves for exterior faucets. If a pipe does freeze, don't thaw it too quickly. That's how pipes burst. To protect your plumbing, never set the thermostat below 55 degrees. If an emergency does occur, follow these steps. • Turn off the water supply immediately. Call your utility company if necessary. • Use mops and towels to remove as much water as possible. • Turn on fans, dehumidifiers or air conditioners to remove excess moisture. • Use wood blocks or tinfoil to elevate furniture from wet surfaces. • Remove area rugs, table lamps and colored items to prevent staining and to help dry the underlying surface. • Place wet sofa cushions and upholstered items on end for faster drying. • Never use ceiling lights, TVs or appliances in waterlogged areas. • Remove books, magazines and items that may bleed or stain. • Stay out of areas where ceilings are sagging. By taking preventive measures, you can minimize the likelihood of water damage in Edmond Oklahoma affecting your home. You can also lessen the severity of the water damage by following these tips. If you do experience water damage at your home or business, respond quickly, and call a professional to handle the situation.

Be prepared for any disaster with an emergency supply kit!

8/13/2019 (Permalink)

Be prepared!

A disaster supply kit is a collection of basic items your household may need in the event of an emergency. You should have a kit at home and also at your place of work. At work, try to include a pair of comfortable shoes in case you need to walk to a shelter area. It's best to assume that in the event of an emergency or natural disaster, roads will be inaccessible by vehicles, and public transportation will be shut down.

Try to assemble your kit well in advance of an emergency. You may have to evacuate at a moment's notice and take essentials with you. You will probably not have time to search for the supplies you need or shop for them.

You may need to survive on your own after an emergency. This means having your own food, water and other supplies in sufficient quantity to last for at least 72 hours. Local officials and relief workers will be on the scene after a disaster but they cannot reach everyone immediately. You could get help in hours or it might take days.

Additionally, basic services such as electricity, gas, water, sewage treatment and telephones may be cut off for days, even a week or longer. Your supplies kit should contain items to help you manage during these outages.

Emergency Supplies

Water, food and clean air are important things to have if an emergency happens. Each family or individual's kit should be customized to meet specific needs, such as medications and infant formula. It should also be customized to include important family documents.

Recommended Supplies To Include In A Basic Kit:

  • Water, one gallon of water per person per day, for drinking and sanitation
  • Food, at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food
  • Battery-powered radio and a NOAA Weather Radio with tone alert and extra batteries for both
  • Flashlight and extra batteries
  • First Aid kit
  • Whistle to signal for help
  • Infant formula and diapers, if you have an infant
  • Moist towelettes, garbage bags and plastic ties for personal sanitation
  • Dust mask or cotton t-shirt, to help filter the air
  • Plastic sheeting and duct tape to shelter-in-place
  • Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities
  • Can opener for food (if kit contains canned food)

SERVPRO of Decatur Forsyth can help with any type of loss.

8/13/2019 (Permalink)

This is one of our large loss jobs that we completed and made it "Like it never even happened".

Should your commercial building experience a large loss, we can quickly activate more SERVPRO trained teammates from other SERVPRO franchises to help us get your building back in order so that you don’t lose revenue. SERVPRO has mobilization teams that travel across the country as needed to support recovery after large storm or disaster events. These teams are familiar with handling the work that goes into a large loss project and are trained to work as efficiently as possible. We have brought the teams in to help in the past. Each time, we have had successful outcomes.

Timely mitigation is the key to controlling damage, downtime and recovery costs. Our crews are available 24/7, 365 days a year. SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth is dedicated to providing detailed and consistent communication to make our customers aware of job status and progress toward completion.

Give us a call anytime 24/7 (217) 428-2371

Sump Pumps can save your basement from a water damage disaster

8/8/2019 (Permalink)

Don't let this happen to you!

A sump pump is designed to pump water through a discharge pipe and away from your home's foundation. When a sump pump fails, the result is often a flooded basement and expensive water damage. It doesn't take a lot of water to cause major problems. A small amount of standing water on your basement floor can quickly turn into a nasty mold problem.

You don't have to wait until you have a wet basement to address your sump pump problems. It helps to understand common sump pump problems – and then avoid them by making smart sump pump choices.

1. Overwhelmed pump

If your sump pump isn't the right size, it might not be able to handle high volumes of water, which can leave you with a flooded basement. Sometimes a single pump isn't enough.

2. Pump burn-out

A sump pump can burn out because of a faulty float switch or an overworked, underpowered pump. Cheap pumps made with inexpensive materials and components are prone to failure, especially when they’re needed most during extremely wet weather.

3. Power loss/outage

There are several reasons why a pump might lose power. It could be a tripped circuit breaker, unplugged pump or power outage. No matter what the reason, a normal sump pump doesn't function unless there's power.

4. Clogged intake

When the intake becomes clogged, this prevents the pump from extracting water from the sump pit or sump liner.

5. Frozen/clogged discharge line

The discharge pipe is what carries water from your sump pump to outside the home. The pipe can become clogged with dirt, rocks, roots and other debris. In the wintertime, any water in the discharge line can freeze and clog the system.

School will be here soon! Be prepared with these helpful tips

7/25/2019 (Permalink)

As the lazy days of summer slip away, it will soon be time to put away the beach chairs and corner lemonade stands and prepare for going back to school. Here are some tips to make the transition easier.

Adjust to the new routine

Ease into the school-year schedule. Getting back into the school routine can be a challenge for everyone in the family. To make the adjustment easier, start early.

• A few weeks before school starts, move bedtime back to an earlier time.
• Put a positive spin on going back to school. Talk about the fun things your child will learn, the old friends he’ll see and the new friends he’ll make.
• If your child is anxious about starting the next grade, reassure her that other children have these feelings too.
• Don’t make plans for big trips right before the start of school.
• Establish school-day schedules for homework, TV, baths, and bedtime.
• Arrange play dates with friends from school to re-establish connections that may have been dropped for the summer, or to create new ones.


Get organized

Take advantage of the slower pace during your time away from school to set up for the busy school year ahead.

Storm Damage Scenarios

7/17/2019 (Permalink)

Take Action Quickly!

Severe storms can be frightening and dangerous, and safety has to be your first priority. If your area has seen major problems, be careful. If you think your home has been structurally damaged or if flood risk remains, don’t go inside until a professional says it’s safe. Spending a few nights at a friend’s house or in an emergency shelter is a small price to pay.

Once the disaster has passed, it’s important to assess the damage and get started with cleanup and restoration. 

Here is a list of storm related damages your property may suffer from:

Hail Damage

Lightning and Thunderstorm Damage

Winter Storm Damage

Storm-related Flood Damage and Tidal Surges

High Winds, Tornadoes and Hurricane Damage

Hire a Professional 

It’s vital to repair storm damage quickly, but the risk of danger is high. Before you try making repairs yourself, work with your home insurer and hire a fully licensed and bonded professional with credentials from the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC). Call SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth for help! We’re available for emergencies 24/7. (217) 428-2371

We are ready to serve you!

7/15/2019 (Permalink)

Keep calm and call SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth provides 24-hour emergency service and is dedicated to being faster to any-sized disaster in Decatur, IL.  We can respond immediately to your water damage emergency and have the expertise to handle your restoration and cleaning needs.

  1. Faster to Any-Sized Disaster
  2. 24-Hour Emergency Service
  3. Locally Owned and Operated
  4. Highly Trained Restoration Technicians
  5. A Trusted Leader in the Restoration Industry
  6. Advanced Restoration and Cleaning Equipment
  7. Water Extraction and Dehumidification


Water mitigation is the process of reducing or preventing the amount of water damage that happens after a flood, a burst pipe, a leaking roof or more. The SERVPRO team offers fast action to help prevent additional damage and cost.

Call anytime (217)428-2371

We can make it "Like it never even happened."

Make sure you always clean your dryer vents.

7/10/2019 (Permalink)

Don't let this happen to you!

Signs that you should clean your dryer vents

Your first hint that you need to check your vents is when your clothing doesn’t dry after a normal drying cycle. If you encounter any other issues, contact a professional right away to inspect your venting.

Look out for the following signs of a clogged dryer vent:

  • A musty odor is discovered in the clothing following the drying cycle
  • Clothes seem unusually hot to the touch
  • Excessive heat is noticed in the room in which the washer and dryer are operated
  • The dryer vent hood flap does not open properly when you use the dryer (this is the slitted vent opening to the exterior of your home)
  • Debris is noticed within the outside dryer vent opening
  • Large amounts of lint build-up in the lint trap during each cycle
  • Odor noticed from dryer sheets used during the drying cycle

How to prevent a dryer fire

You can do your part as a homeowner to prevent a dryer fire taking place in your home through proper installation, cleaning, and maintenance. Even if your dryer seems to be running fine right now, it’s better to be safe than sorry.

Take these steps to prevent a dryer fire:

  • Read the manufacturers’ instructions and warnings upon installation and be sure that your dryer is installed by a knowledgeable professional and that the correct electrical plug and outlet are used
  • Clean the dryer lint filter before and after each load of laundry
  • Clean the filter with a nylon brush at least once every six (6) months or more often if it becomes clogged
  • Completely clean lint out of the vent pipe every three (3) months
  • Check occasionally through the venting system behind the dryer to ensure it isn’t damaged
  • Put a cover on outside wall dampers to keep out the elements
  • Ensure the outdoor vent cover opens when the dryer is on

What can you do right now?

  1. Take a look inside the venting from the outside of your house
  2. Check your lint traps inside the dryer

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth is always here to help when a disaster strikes!

Be safe starting a fire!

7/9/2019 (Permalink)

Safety first!

How to Safely Ignite the Fire

  • An adult should always be present during open burning and children and pets should be kept at a safe distance away.
  • Use paper and kindling to start a fire and add progressively larger pieces of wood. Parts of a leftover Christmas tree may also be used.
  • Never use gasoline, kerosene or any other flammable liquid to start a fire! The risk of personal injury in these cases is very high.
  • Burn one small pile at a time and slowly add to it. This will help keep the fire from getting out of control.
  • Select a location away from utility lines.

Fires Must be Attended Until Completely Extinguished
Do not leave your fire burning unattended. This is a reason to revoke your burning permit.

Fire Control Tools and Water Supply Must Be Present
The water supply can be a pressurized fire extinguisher, a pump can or garden hose, and be sure to test it out before igniting the fire to be sure it works properly. Also, if relying on a garden hose double-check that the water supply is turned on and that there are no cracks in the hose itself. You are required to have a water supply and fire control tools on hand.

Watch the Wind: Be Prepared to Extinguish All Open Burning
It is unsafe to burn during high winds. Use common sense and don’t wait for the fire department to contact you that is has become unsafe to burn. Sudden wind change is the how most open burning gets out of control.

Don’t Delay a Call for Help
If for some reason, the fire should get out of control, call the fire department immediately. Use the utmost caution to prevent injury to yourself or family members or any damage by fire to your home.


7/9/2019 (Permalink)


If there is a care label on your ready-made curtains you should of course follow it. Choose the recommended gentle cycle - typically a wool program with low spin. It is important that the water level is high, as high water level protects the fabric. If you have large curtains, consider whether you would rather do two washes, instead of putting both curtains together in the same wash.

If you are unsure whether the curtains can take a cycle in the washing machine, then you can of course wash your curtains by hand. Whether you wash your curtains by hand or machine, it's a good idea to hang them while they are still damp to avoid unnecessary folds while drying. Wring them well up or centrifuge them on low speed. Add newspapers or a towel under the curtains to collect excess water so you protect your floor.


The easiest way to clean your venetian blinds is with a blind brush or microfiber cloth. Are your blinds greasy? If so, then you should use a wet wipe or a damp cloth. Use clean water and if necessary add a little washing up liquid.

It is best not to take your blinds down to wash them, as it can be very time consuming. Aluminum venetian blinds can easily get ugly cracks in the sides, so apply caution. Add the blinds gently to a bath tub or in the bottom of the shower and wash them with a soft brush in warm water, mild detergent and vinegar. Add perhaps a little rinse aid to the water you clean the blinds with. The water drops will prevent stains. Hang the blinds up and let them dry before you put them back in the brackets over the window.


Vertical blinds should be dusted with a microfiber cloth or another dust brush. If an accident occurs and the slats are spotted, they can then be taken down and washed by hand. The slats must not be folded directly. Washing this type of blind must be done gently. Roll the slats but let them fill as much as possible in the shower or bathtub. It is recommended for most vertical blinds to be washed in cold water. Some vertical blinds can stand soaking at a maximum of 30 degrees. Always check the washing instructions.


Pleated blinds can be dusted with a microfiber or a damp cloth.


Roller blinds are rarely dirty as they are either rolled together or completely vertical. Most roller blinds can be easily dusted with a cloth or vacuumed if needed. They can also be cleaned with a damp cloth and a small amount of washing up liquid.


Roman blinds can also easily be dusted with a cloth or brush. They can also be taken down and washed, but this is a complicated process, since the cords can easily get wound together.

How to get rid of marks on walls.

7/9/2019 (Permalink)

The first thing you have to do is avoid fretting over it since this is going to persist as growing children need a canvas to scribble on and walls are the ultimate temptation. Crayons are made of wax and are less messy than paint or markers. Apart from being non-toxic, they can be dealt with quite easily. Clean crayon marks off your walls with these simple cleaning tips and you will have clean shiny walls in no time.

Soap Water

Detergent can be diluted with some water. Use a cloth or a steel wool and dip in the soap water and rub the stains off. For best results, be patient and gentle while scrubbing.


Hot air helps in melting the wax in crayons, hence the blow-dryer. Use a clean cloth and dip it in soap water. Hold the dryer against the marks and gently wash the marks off.


Toothpaste abrasives help in removing crayon marks. Apply a non-gel toothpaste on the crayon marks. Gently rub the marks with an old toothbrush or a scrubber.


Vinegar is a universal cleaning hack. Take an old toothbrush or a rag. Dip this in vinegar to wipe off crayon stains.

Baking Soda

Make a thick paste by diluting baking soda in water. Use a cloth or a toothbrush to scrub off the crayon stains. After the stains are washed away, clean the area with soap water once again.


This unusual tip delivers promising results. Apply mayonnaise over the crayon marks and leave for several minutes. After a while, wash it off with a clean cloth.

Wet Wipes

Rub the wet wipes over crayon marks to get a clean wall. Use a gentle motion since intense rubbing may affect the wall paint.

Heat is the most important factor in removing these marks and since crayons are made of wax, heating it up allows you to wipe it off easily with a moist cloth. Make sure you get rid of these crayon scribbles gently since vigorous rubbing may ruin the paint on the walls.

SERVPRO puts customers first!

6/25/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth is here to help you, whether with advice or cleanup and restoration services, we are here. We service all of Decatur and Forsyth are. We have been in business for nearly 30 years, providing everything from carpet cleaning, upholstery cleaning, duct cleaning, general cleaning to Fire Damage, Water Damage, Mold Remediation, cleanup and restoration.

Our scope of work is not limited, we provide cleaning services to the residential, commercial and industrial arenas. Area businesses can contact us 24 hours a day 7 days a week. Live operators answer, we respond to emergency calls in minutes. This is a service we have truly mastered and are aces at. Come back and visit this blog from time to time for advice, information and maybe a little fun. If there are any topics, tips or information you would like to know about, feel free to email us and ask. Thanks for stopping by, and for your time spent here today!

We can clean your business!

6/24/2019 (Permalink)

We can clean and make any mess "Like it never even happened"

Commercial Cleaning by Industry

Whether your company makes its home in a clinic or school, a small or large office building, we deliver professional commercial cleaning services that help promote healthy work environments and keep your building sparkling.  Our team members are trained to clean in healthcare environments such as medical offices, health care facilities. Our standards were developed in recognition of best practices and procedures for the industry. 


SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth is here to help anyone that needs a commercial business cleaned. We are available 24 hours a day 7 days a week. We can schedule you an appointment today!

Call SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth today for all your cleaning needs. (217) 428-2371

Back up sump pumps can save you the heartache of a water damage

6/20/2019 (Permalink)

Sump pump back ups are important!

Summer has sprung which means it is time for heavy rains, flooding, and all the not-so-fun basement water damage that often accompanies the rainy season in much of the Midwest. For those homeowners with full basements or larger crawl spaces, you likely have sump pumps. If you don’t, it might be a good idea to have one or two installed.

There are two types of sump pumps: pedestal and submersible. A submersible sump pump rests in a larger basin, with the motor beneath the water line. A pedestal sump pump is smaller, with the motor above the water line. If you have the room, a submersible is the better choice — but if your basement is prone to flooding, any sump pump type is better than no sump pump.


Like your hot water heater and furnace, you should check your sump pump at least once a year to make sure it is in proper working order. For those living in wetter conditions, a twice-yearly check is best. Look at the pump’s power cord to determine if there is any corrosion and the cord is free from contacting water. The test valve should move easily, and any alarms should work.

Flush the drain pipes. Pour hot water into them and see how fast they empty outside. A slow flow likely means the pipes are getting clogged with debris. Check the sump pump for oil leaks. Test the backup battery by unplugging the sump pump and filling the basin with water. The pump should turn on with a battery reserve. Once the basin is empty, plug the pump in and again fill the basin with water to make sure the pump works with electricity.


You might think all this contact with water would keep your sump pump nice and clean — but you’d be wrong. Sump pumps get dirty and can get moldy. If you are handy, you can clean the sump pump unit. Just make sure to unplug it and disconnect the backup battery and any alarms before removing the pump.

You should remove the entire pump for ease of cleaning and to see it better. To do this, remove the fasteners attaching the discharge pipe. If the pump does not come free easily, use a lubricant to loosen it. Place the pump on a tarp or take it outside. Cleaning the pump will get messy.

Once you have the sump pump out, use a dry sponge or clean rag to wipe away grime. For whatever sticks, try a flathead screwdriver or small paint scraper to loosen it. After the debris is cleared away to the best of your ability, it is time to disinfect. This means disinfecting not only the sump pump, but also the basin and the discharge pipe.

Wipe down the outside of the sump pump, the inside of the basin, and the discharge pipes with bleach or vinegar. If you are working indoors, ventilate the area. Wear a face mask and disposable gloves no matter where you are and what you use as a cleaning agent.

For those with a shop vac, put it to use by sucking out all the gunk and water inside the bottom of the pit. Make sure to empty the vac after use and wipe down the inside with disinfectant. Once everything is clean and dry, reassemble the sump pump and plug it in.


Lightning often comes with heavy rains and both can knock out electrical power, so it is important to have a sump pump that works with a backup battery. The last thing you want is to know that your basement or crawl space is getting flooded, and the one thing you bought to help with that is not working because the power went out.

Firework safety tips

6/18/2019 (Permalink)

Follow these Firework Safety Tips to avoid an unwanted disaster!

While you are enjoying your grilling, family time, and fireworks, take time to remind your kids what this holiday is about.  The lighting and display of fireworks came with a price to many men and women sacrificing for their kids and future generations. Remain safe if your family tradition includes lighting fireworks. 

Here are 10 fireworks safety tips you should use and teach to your kids.

  1. Fireworks packaged in brown paper are made for professional displays – avoid buying.
  2. Always have an adult supervise fireworks activities, especially with sparklers.
  3. Back up to a safe distance immediately after lighting fireworks.
  4. Never point or throw fireworks at another person.
  5. Keep a bucket of water or a garden hose handy in case of fire and to douse used fireworks before discarding in trash.
  6. Never allow young children to play or ignite fireworks.
  7. Never carry fireworks in a pocket or shoot them off in metal or glass containers.
  8. Never try to re-light or pickup fireworks that have not ignited fully.
  9. Never place a part of your body directly over a firework device when lighting.
  10. Make sure fireworks are legal in your area before buying or using them.

BE SAFE this holiday! Fireworks can be a fire hazard and can burn buildings, things and even you! SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth wants you to enjoy this 4th of July the safe way!

How to Pick a Campfire Spot

6/18/2019 (Permalink)

Campfires can be nice and relaxing if they are started in a suitable spot!

Picking a suitable campfire spot is crucial to maintaining a safe fire and preventing wildfires.

Be sure to evaluate the site before starting a fire. If the area is brushy or extremely dry, you might want to avoid building a fire altogether. These types of conditions are perfect for igniting wildfires.

Another important thing to remember? Always check with the campground operator or local agency to make sure fires are permitted in the area.

If fires are allowed and conditions are safe, follow these tips to choose a campfire spot:

  • Look for an existing fire pit or ring. If you can’t find one, choose a site with a rock or dirt surface.

  • Avoid areas with fuel for your fire, like moss, logs, or decaying leaves.

  • Build your fire at least 15 feet away from trees, tents, chairs, or any other debris.

  • Select a site that’s sheltered from high winds.

  • Don’t forget to look up – find an area without any overhanging branches.

If you have any questions, contact your campground ranger. Fire safety is their top priority and rangers can help you determine whether a pit or site is suitable for a campfire. It’s always better to be safe than sorry!


6/10/2019 (Permalink)

Don't get caught in flash flooding! Be safe.

11 Facts of flash flooding:

  1. No region is safe from flooding. All 50 states are subject to flash floods.
  2. Flash floods can bring walls of water from 10 to 20 feet high.
  3. A car can be taken away in as little as 2 feet of water.
  4. To stay safe during a flood, go to the highest ground of floor possible. If your skin comes in contact with flood water, make sure to wash it with soap and disinfected water because the contents are unknown.
  5. Flooding is caused by spring thawing (snow and frozen grounds melting in the spring), heavy rains, snow melt runoffs, flash floods, and mudflows.
  6. Floods are the most widespread natural disaster aside from wildfires. 90% of all U.S. natural disasters declared by the President involve some sort of flooding.
  7. In preparation for a flood, it is important to stock up on first aid items, non-perishable foods, 3 gallons of water per person for 3 days, battery operated radio for weather reports, extra batteries, personal hygiene necessities.
  8. Based on Floodsmart, a 2,000 square foot home undergoing 12” of water damage could cost more than $50,000.
  9. Since flood damage is almost never covered by homeowners insurance, flood insurance is important for people living in high-risk flood zones.
  10. To stay safe during a flood, go to the highest ground of floor possible. If your skin comes in contact with flood water, make sure to wash it with soap and disinfected water because the contents are unknown.
  11. Communities particularly at risk are those located in low-lying areas, near water, or downstream from a dam.

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth wants you to be aware and prepared for any natural disaster! We are always here to help!


Difference between storm warnings and watches

6/10/2019 (Permalink)

It's important to stay aware of severe weather watches and warnings and to know how to react. A "watch" means that conditions are favorable for severe storms. Watches are typically issued for large areas and are in effect for several hours. When a "watch" is issued, you should be alert for the POTENTIAL for severe weather. You can proceed with your plans, however you should be "on the lookout" for changing weather conditions and be ready to move to a safe place if you hear thunder or see lightning.

A "warning" means severe weather is imminent or occurring, and action should be immediate. Severe thunderstorms are capable of producing damaging wind and/or hail. In our area, straight-line winds result in the majority of storm damage. Therefore, you should be ready to react when a severe thunderstorm warning is issued.

It should be noted that lightning occurs with every thunderstorm. There is no "lightning warning." This does not mean that lightning is not dangerous. In fact, lightning kills or injures just as many people as tornadoes in an average year. If you hear thunder or see lightning, it is possible for lightning to strike. Lightning can strike several miles from the thunderstorm, even while the sun is shining! The safest place in a thunderstorm is inside a sturdy building. Stay away from windows, anything that is "plugged in" and plumbing. A hard-topped vehicle is acceptable if you are unable to reach a building.

2019 Macon County Fair

6/10/2019 (Permalink)

Alan Dobrinick (Marketing Manager) and Joel Robb (Owner)

2019 Macon County Fair

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth are proud Platinum Level Sponsors. 

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth has been in the community for nearly 30 years. We are glad we got to help out this wonderful event in Macon County. We are her to support our local community. 

Here are 10 ways to give back to your community:

Promote Local Businesses

One of the best ways to support your community is to help out other businesses in the area. Buy local as often possible and set aside an area of your website to link to your favorite local companies. Cross networking with non-competing companies with similar markets helps you reach more people and help out other local business owners just like you--a win-win!

Participate in Holiday Food Drives

During the holidays, many businesses encourage employees to bring in unopened non-perishable canned and boxed foods that can be donated to local food banks. This is a fantastic way to help you community, and it requires very little additional tie. You'll only have to set aside a half hour or so just before Christmas to transport the items.

Sponsor a Youth Sports Team

Chances are someone on your staff has a child on a youth sports team. By finding a local team to sponsor, you'll be able to help with the funds it needs and get publicity in exchange for your support. This is a simple way to help out with very minimal time investment.

Set Up a Collection Jar

This is a way to support your community with no time commitment. Simply choose a charity that is important to your team and collect money in a high-traffic area inside your business.

This is a great way that I have seen children be able to participate in their own way. You can teach them important values that will last with them for all time.

Hold a Contest

You can support your community while also encouraging your employees to have fun by holding a contest. Each employee chooses a local charity and instead of prizes, money goes to the charities chosen by the winners.

This was one of the most successful ways that I've been able to help some of the local charities around my business. Popular TV shows like the Apprentice and other shows have done this as well to help out charity organizations.

Sponsor an Event

Sponsoring a participant in a local marathon can be a great way to show support, especially if you can support your own employees who are participating in such events.

Adopt a Brick

Occasionally new civic buildings will offer local residents the option of purchasing a brick or stone, either on a walkway or building. Such a purchase gives you the opportunity to contribute to progress while also enjoying a little publicity.

Build a House

Organizations like Habitat for Humanity offer businesses the opportunity to participate in construction projects that benefit disadvantaged residents. The best thing about this type of volunteerism is that many builds are done on weekends.

Offer Your Skills

As a leader in your industry, you likely have an area of expertise that's of value to others. Consider teaching classes on entrepreneurship to local residents or offer to teach a specialized skill that could be of value to those who have been out of the workforce for a while.

I personally help with the Open to Hope foundation on a daily basis. This has brought me some of the biggest personal wins. Helping be apart of something that's bigger than yourself will deliver happiness in your life.

Encourage Employee Volunteerism

Many businesses are now encouraging employees to volunteer by offering paid time off for volunteering. A business can show its support for the community by giving employees a specific amount of time each month, quarter, or year for volunteer work, which boosts morale while also increasing a business's community involvement.

Some of the biggest corporations on the planet allow a specific number of hours each year that are allotted to a company to volunteer at a charity of their choice.

As a vital part of your community, it's important to regularly show support for the residents and businesses who support you. By researching various ways you can participate in local events and organizations, you will be able to come up with your own unique way of giving back to your local community.

We are happy to be in the Decatur community.

6/10/2019 (Permalink)

We are here to help!

SERVPRO is always ready to do work and is happy when recommended to do so. We feel very honored to be out in the community. We show appreciation to everyone who use our services and support us. We truly do what we love to do. 

We would love to hear any ideas for marketing in the Decatur area. SERVPRO also would be interested in sponsorship's that need help. The more involved we can be in the community the better. We strive to be the best that we can be. 

Your local SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth is out and about throughout the Decatur area. We really give thanks to the customers and the community support and look forward to SERVPRO-ing you in the future!


Candle Burning Safety

6/10/2019 (Permalink)

Never leave a candle burning unattended

How many house fires are caused by candles in the U.S. each year?

Candles cause an estimated 15,600 house fires, 150 deaths, and 1,270 injuries each year.

 Why are candles so dangerous?

A candle flame may be small, but you should treat it as you would any other flame – with care. Candles turn to liquid in order to release their fragrance and this wax carries heat and that can cause another surface, such as a wood table, to catch fire. Over half of candle fires start because the candle is too close to combustible materials.

What is one of the common factors in fatal candle fires?

More than half of all candle fires start when something that can burn, is combustible, such as furniture, bedding, mattresses, curtains, or decorations are too close to the candle flame. One-fifth or 20% of these fires are candles unattented or abandoned.

When do these fires occur?

The majority of candle fires and fire deaths occur during the month of December between the hours of midnight and 6:00 a.m.

What is the safest way to use candles?

• Always burn candles in a suitable glass or metal container. Containers should not tip easily.

• Keep candles at least 12 inches away from anything than can burn.

• Clean and trim candlewicks to 1/8 or ¼ inch before lighting.

• Do not burn candles all the way down to the bottom.

• Keep candles where children and pets can’t reach them. A pet, such as a cat, can jump up and knock over the candle or knock over something into the candle.

• Keep candles out of windy or drafty areas and away from anything that can easily catch fire (for example, furniture, curtains, carpet, or newspapers). So often, a curtain blows into a candle, something falls on it, or the candle burn downs and ignites nearby combustibles

• Always place candles on a heat-resistant surface. Small candles such as tea lights can melt plastic surfaces, such as the top of a TV and the side of a bath tub. • Always place candles on an uncluttered surface.

• Candles should not be used during a power outage. Flashlights and other battery powered lights are safer options.

• Always put the candle out when leaving a room or going to sleep. Use a special candle snuffer or candle quencher. Do not use fingers or blow them out. Blowing them out can send sparks and hot wax flying

A bad roof can lead to extreme damage to your home.

6/6/2019 (Permalink)

A water damage could cost you thousands of dollars.

How to tell if your roof is leaking....

Here are a 17 things to look for »

  1. Water stains or damp spots on your ceiling
  2. Moist drywall or paint around light fixtures or electrical outlets
  3. Damp spots around interior air vents or fireplaces
  4. Interior paint bubbling or peeling during hard rains
  5. Dripping sounds inside your home
  6. Water stains on rafters or on roof sheathing inside your attic
  7. A musty house smell (especially in your attic)
  8. Curling or buckling shingles on your roof
  9. Loose shingles laying in your yard
  10. Loose or exposed nails on your roof
  11. Cracked or damaged flashing around roof vents
  12. Loose flashing or cracked sealants around your chimney
  13. Roof rot with discolored or excessively degraded shingles
  14. Peeling paint or rotten areas under roof eaves
  15. Clogged or loose gutters & downspouts
  16. Debris piles in roof valleys or above chimney
  17. Shingle granules in your gutters

Regular maintence to your roof can save you the heartache from a water damage.

We clean air ducts to eliminate harmful contaminates in the air

6/5/2019 (Permalink)

Dust and debris can pile up in your ducts.

Duct cleaning is important maintenance to your home:

  • Renovation: If your home has been remodeled – especially if there was asbestos abatement, lead paint removal, or significant dust – your ductwork may need to be cleaned. Ducts should be sealed off during home renovations; but if they weren’t, dangerous dust and debris may become lodged inside the ductwork.
  • Animals: If there’s evidence of animal infestation or nesting in your ducts or HVAC system, have the animals removed then clean the ductwork and HVAC unit.
  • Mold: If there is visible mold growth inside the ductwork, the ducts and HVAC system should be cleaned.
  • Contaminants: If noticeable debris, pet hair, odors, or other contaminants are being released into the room through the ducts after the registers have been cleaned and vacuumed; then the ducts may need to be cleaned.
  • Illness: If someone in your family is suffering from an unexplained allergy-related illness, and you’ve taken every other possible step to decontaminate your home, you may want to consider having your ducts cleaned to see if the HVAC system was the culprit.


We use advanced technology to get the best results
Eliminates harmful contaminants that once spread through the house on a regular basis. 
Eliminates dust, pet dander, mold and fungi
Relief from airborne particles

Our employees are dedicated to get the job done right and make it "Like it never even happened."

Call us today (217) 428-2371

We support our local community

6/3/2019 (Permalink)

2019 Golf Outing

Macon County Fraternal Order of Police #144 Charity Golf Scramble

Investing in your community is a great way to give back to those who have helped support your business. Volunteer groups and non-profit organizations do so much to help the communities that all of us are a part of, but they can't do it alone.

Many people really enjoy the intangible benefit of giving. Giving back to the community gives you a pleasant feeling of connectedness and the satisfaction of at least trying to make the world a better place.

There are many other ways for your business to support the community, such as:

  • Enter a float in the annual parade, or decorate a vehicle at Christmas (one of the concrete companies in my locale creates a beautiful light display on one of their cement trucks and drives it around town in the evenings)
  • Support a kids sports team
  • Donate the use of a delivery vehicle for a local function
  • Offer your business services at a local event (for example, one of the local computer shops organizes the wifi services at the annual town festival)
  • Donate to the food bank
  • Have coin donation boxes and/or sell tickets for a charity event at your business
  • Donate a portion of your sales to a charity on a particular day or for a time period
  • Give a charitable or community group a meeting or workspace on your business premises for free (a local pub, for instance, provides a large conference/meeting room for an animal charity's trivia night fundraiser each year)

Water can be fun this summer but make sure you use water safety.

5/23/2019 (Permalink)

Stay safe this summer!

Water Safety Tips! Pool Safety

1. Staying close, being alert and watching children in and around the pool

  • Never leave a child unattended in a pool or spa and always watch your child when he or she is in or near water
  • Teach children basic water safety tips
  • Keep children away from pool drains, pipes and other openings to avoid entrapment's
  • Have a telephone close by when you or your family is using a pool or spa
  • If a child is missing, look for him or her in the pool or spa first
  • Share safety instructions with family, friends and neighbors

2.  Learning and practicing water safety skills

  • Learn how to swim and teach your child how to swim
  • Learn to perform CPR on children and adults, and update those skills regularly
  • Understand the basics of life-saving so that you can assist in a pool emergency

3.  Having appropriate equipment for your pool or spa

  • Install a four-foot or taller fence around the pool and spa and use self-closing and self-latching gates; ask your neighbors to do the same at their pools.
  • Install and use a lockable safety cover on your spa.
  • If your house serves as a fourth side of a fence around a pool, install door alarms and always use them. For additional protection, install window guards on windows facing pools or spas.
  • Install pool and gate alarms to alert you when children go near the water
  • Ensure any pool and spa you use has compliant drain covers, and ask your pool service provider if you do not know
  • Maintain pool and spa covers in good working order
  • Consider using a surface wave or underwater alarm

Summer Storms can be dangerous

5/23/2019 (Permalink)

Be safe!

Summertime across Central Illinois means barbecues, festivals, sporting events, boating, hitting the beach, camping, and many other recreational activities. In short, summertime means a lot more people are spending a lot more time in the great outdoors. But summer is also the peak season for one of the nation's deadliest weather phenomena -- lightning. Lightning typically receives less attention than other storm-related killers because it does not result in mass destruction or mass casualties like tornadoes, floods, or hurricanes often do.

Lightning is one of the most erratic and unpredictable characteristics of a thunderstorm. Because of this, no one can guarantee an individual or group absolute protection from lightning. However, knowing and following proven lightning safety guidelines can greatly reduce the risk of injury or death.

Therefore, if you can hear thunder, you are within striking distance. Seek safe shelter immediately. Remember this lightning safety rule: WHEN THUNDER ROARS, GO INDOORS...and stay there until 30 minutes after the last clap of thunder. Do not wait for the rain to start before you decide to seek shelter, and do not leave shelter just because the rain has ended.

Got dirty vehicles?

5/23/2019 (Permalink)

We can clean any vehicle and make it "Like it never even happened"

Dirty Commercial Vehicles? No Problem.

Whether you are transporting customers in a bus or van, using your car for business, or operating a fleet of work vehicles, our commercial vehicle cleaning services can help. The day to day wear on your commercial vehicle can build up quickly. Odors can sink deep into the fabric and floors can be covered in ground-in debris. We want to help you keep your commercial vehicles clean throughout the year. Our trained technicians use state-of-the-art cleaning equipment to rid your vehicle of stains from customers, employees, and general use.

Regularly scheduled cleanings can help keep your business’ fleet looking new. Our trained technicians have the tools and experience to help you leave a positive lasting impression on your customers. We have been in the industry for over 100 years and have a dedication to providing the very best service. If you are as dedicated to putting your best foot forward as we are, you need our commercial vehicle cleaning services today.

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth can help!

Call us today! (217)428-2371

Leave the cleanup from a fire to the professionals.

5/13/2019 (Permalink)

Soot is toxic! Don't mess with it.

The word "soot" sounds so simple and harmless. To some, it conjures up images of campfires and candles, and perhaps a charming dance number from Mary Poppins.

In fact, soot is anything but simple and is certainly not harmless.

Soot includes the fine black particles, chiefly composed of carbon, produced by incomplete combustion of coal, oil, wood, or other fuels. Soot can consist of acids, chemicals, metals, soils, and dust. The common trait of soot particles is that they are extremely tiny – 2.5 micrometers or smaller in diameter. This is smaller than dust and mold, and is about 1/30 the diameter of a human hair.

This combination – extremely small size and toxic composition – is what makes soot so dangerous. It can travel deep into the lung, where the compounds it consists of can do some serious damage.

Leave the cleanup to the Professionals!

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth

(217) 428-2371

BE SAFE during a Thunderstorm!

5/13/2019 (Permalink)

Take shelter in a safe place during a thunderstorm.

You can protect yourself from risk even if you are caught outdoors when lightning is close by.

Safety precautions outdoors

  • If the weather forecast calls for thunderstorms, postpone your trip or activity.
  • Remember: When thunder roars, go indoors. Find a safe, enclosed shelter.
  • The main lightning safety guide is the 30-30 rule. After you see lightning, start counting to 30. If you hear thunder before you reach 30, go indoors. Suspend activities for at least 30 minutes after the last clap of thunder.
  • If no shelter is available, crouch low, with as little of your body touching the ground as possible. Lightning causes electric currents along the top of the ground that can be deadly over 100 feet away.
  • Stay away from concrete floors or walls. Lightning can travel through any metal wires or bars in concrete walls or flooring.
    Although you should move into a non-concrete structure if possible, being indoors does not automatically protect you from lightning. In fact, about one-third of lightning-strike injuries occur indoors.

Safety precautions indoors

  • Avoid water during a thunderstorm. Lightning can travel through plumbing.
  • Avoid electronic equipment of all types. Lightning can travel through electrical systems and radio and television reception systems.
  • Avoid corded phones. However, cordless or cellular phones are safe to use during a storm.
  • Avoid concrete floors and walls.

Lightning strikes may be rare, but they still happen and the risk of serious injury or death is severe. So take thunderstorms seriously.

Learn and follow these safety rules to keep yourself safe from lightning.

SERVPRO is the answer to any disaster!

5/13/2019 (Permalink)

All of our employees that enter your home are trained to safely clean and restore your home or business after it's faced a loss.

Below are the steps that we take for Cleaning and Restoring Your Home or Business in regards to a water loss:

- Identify the Source/ Type of Water

- Measure Temperature and Humidity for Drying Analysis

- Survey the Extent of Damage and Inspect the Premises for Hidden Moisture

- Perform Emergency Water Extraction

- Move and Block furniture and Contents

- Inspect Carpet Pad/Carpet and Provide Service

- Apply Necessary Treatments (Disinfectants/Deodorization)

- Utilize Advanced Drying and Monitoring Equipment

 All of our technicians are IICRC certified and have extensive knowledge about our services and equipment. Even if we can’t do the job we will help in finding a service who can handle it.

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth is here 24/7 to HELP!

Give us a call anytime day or night!

Leave leaky pipes to the professionals

5/7/2019 (Permalink)

Leaky pipes need to be fixed immediately before it cost you thousands in water damage repairs!

Whether your regular inspection reveals a puddle under a pipe or you get an unpleasant surprise when you reach under your sink, leaks can be a costly nuisance. Leaks usually happen at joints, which is why commercial joint fillers and fitting compounds occupy plenty of shelf space in your local hardware store. These products are a temporary fix, though; a permanent plumbing repair may mean replacing a length of pipe or its fittings.

Although replacing a leaky U-joint under your sink isn’t a complex repair, it is a messy one. You may want to have a professional handle it for you to save the clean-up time. Until the plumber can get to your leak, use a compression clamp and a rubber sheet or leak tape. These temporary repairs keep water from spraying but are easily removed when it’s time for a permanent solution.

Do you have clutter under your sinks? This is WHY you shouldn't!

5/7/2019 (Permalink)

De-clutter under your kitchen sink so it wont cause you problems in the future!

Cabinets under sinks in kitchens and bathrooms are common places to find clutter. There are pipes, maybe a hose or two, and usually a lot of stuff that was stored there in hopes that it would just magically disappear. Additionally, having clutter in this space can quickly become disastrous if one of the pipes or hoses develops a leak or bursts. Then, not only do you have a clutter problem, but you also have a soggy clutter problem.

The first thing to do with these spaces is to clear everything out from this area. Inspect the cabinet and check for signs of leaks or pests. If your cabinet is leak and pest clear, give the cabinet a good cleaning. If you have a leak or pests, call a professional and have the problem resolved before it gets even more out of hand.

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth is always here to help!

Call us anytime!  (217)428-2371

It is TORNADO season in Central Illinois. Are you prepared?

5/7/2019 (Permalink)

Tornadoes can touchdown ANYWHERE!

Prepare NOW

  • 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.

WHY you get the best customer service from SERVPRO

5/3/2019 (Permalink)

Give us a call anytime! (217) 428-2371

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth is ready with 24/7 service. Call day or night and we will be there for you! We ask the right kind of questions so we a prepared when we show up to make the disaster "Like it never even happened."

When you call, we will ask several questions regarding your water damage emergency. These questions will help us determine what equipment and resources to bring, including how many trained SERVPRO Professionals may be needed.

Our SERVPRO Representative will ask several questions:

Your name and contact information

Your insurance information (if applicable)

The street address of the water-damaged home or business

When did the flooding or water damage occur?

What caused the water damage (if known)?

Is there electricity available (on-site)?

Make recommendations to ensure you and your families safety.

GIVE us a call today! (217) 428-2371 

Did you know there are different types of water!

5/3/2019 (Permalink)

We can make water disappear!

Know the Different Types of Water

Believe it or not, there are three types of water. The first type is “clean” water from rain, condensation, leaky pipes, and so on. It’s relatively harmless to clean it up yourself. But if you decide to seek outside help, it costs for basic water damage cleanup (replacements not included). The second type is gray water, slightly dirty water from dishwashers, washing machines, clean toilets, and so on. And it may have some contaminants. But you can clean it up yourself if you remove it carefully and with proper safety gear to protect yourself. Professional water damage cleanup cost rises.

The third type is black water, such as sewage or serious flooding from nearby rivers, etc. This water contains waste, bacteria and other serious contaminants. Black water can cause very serious health problems, and you shouldn’t try to clean it up yourself. It’s time to contact the pros for home water damage repair. Water damage cleanup cost rises.

Helpful tips to know when you have a WATER DAMAGE!

5/1/2019 (Permalink)

Don't wait act fast! Give SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth a call!

Water Damage Timeline

Within Minutes

  • Water quickly spreads throughout your property, saturating everything in its path.
  • Water is absorbed into walls, floors, upholstery, and belongings.
  • Furniture finishes may bleed, causing permanent staining on carpets.
  • Photographs, books, and other paper goods start to swell and warp.

Hours 1 - 24:

  • Drywall begins to swell and break down.
  • Metal surfaces begin to tarnish.
  • Furniture begins to swell and crack.
  • Dyes and inks from cloth and paper goods spread and stain.
  • A musty odor appears.

48 Hours to 1 Week:

  • Mold and mildew may grow and spread.
  • Doors, windows, and studs swell and warp.
  • Metal begins to rust and corrode.
  • Furniture warps and shows signs of mold.
  • Paint begins to blister.
  • Wood flooring swells and warps.
  • Serious biohazard contamination is possible.

More Than 1 Week:

  • Restoration time and cost increase dramatically; replacing contaminated materials and structural rebuilding may be extensive.
  • Structural safety, mold growth, and bio-hazard contaminants pose serious risks to occupants.

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth always here to make it "Like it never even happened."

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth is under new franchise ownership

5/1/2019 (Permalink)

Left: Joel Robb owner of SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth Right: Alan Dobrinick Marketing Manager For SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth

The new and improved SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth is here to help you, whether with advice or cleanup and restoration services, we are here. We service all of Decatur and Forsyth and all surrounding areas. We are under new franchise ownership. We stirve to be the best restoration/cleaning company in all of Decatur/Forsyth. We provide everything from carpet cleaning, upholstery cleaning, duct cleaning, general cleaning to Fire Damage, Water Damage, Mold Remediation, cleanup and restoration.  Our scope of work is not limited, we provide cleaning services to the residential, commercial and industrial arenas. Area businesses can contact us 24 hours a day 7 days a week.  Live operators answer, we respond to emergency calls in minutes.  This is a service we have truly mastered and are aces at. Come back and visit this blog from time to time for advice, information. If there are any topics, tips or information you would like to know about, feel free to email us and ask.  Thanks for stopping by, and for your time spent here today!  We hope to get to know you better.

The next steps to take after a storm passes!

5/1/2019 (Permalink)

The calm after the storm!

The Process of Storm Restoration after the storm passes

After assessment of the damage, a suitable restoration plan is hatched. Damage caused by a storm can run deep and not easy to unravel. However, a professional company can figure out by use of devices to probe and find out the affected areas. The first step of storm restoration is to clear and remove all the debris brought to your home during the storm. To avoid further wind damage and ice damage, the restoration crew will move to reinforce the weak structural walls and roof of the affected house helping it withstand ice dams and strong winds.

After these, a number of processes and services are undertaken. They include:
Water restoration and water removal using a flood pump
Water restoration is important if flood water found its way into your home causing flooding. Flood water can be as a result of heavy rains, river flooding, ground water, or burst frozen pipes. This flooding water can be removed by a flood pump. Stagnating water also need to be removed quickly using a flood pump to avoid growth of molds.

Hail damage restoration
In addition to water restoration, the hail damage restoration may also entail ice damage restoration. Hail storm can result in ice damming in your home. A professional company can remove the ice dams around and in your home by using effective equipment designed for this process. They can also fix the ice damage that follows a storm.

Roof repair
Roof repair is among the most common home restoration services needed after a storm. Roof damage can be caused by strong winds or a hurricane damage. Without repairing the roof, water restoration in the house will be in vain. Heavy hail damage and heavy rains can cause flat roofs to sink or cause seepage and a roof leak. Therefore, roof repairs entail not only sealing the roof but also reinstalling new tiles and reinforcing the roofing frames. Gutters and frozen pipes damaged from ice damming also need to be repaired.

Storm Remediation.
Any home restoration process after a storm ends with a storm remediation. This is done to avoid storm damage completely. You can do this by maintaining regular roof repair to avoid a roof leak that can enhance roof damage during the storm, fixing frozen pipes, and fixing windows and doors that are commonly affected by a storm. You will also need to stay updated on weather warnings and ensure your doors and windows are closed during a storm to avoid flood water coming into your home. You can also make trenches or install a flood pump around you home to prevent water from a river flooding from entering into your home. These trenches can also drain ground water away from your home.

Got STORM Damage?

5/1/2019 (Permalink)

Storms can destroy a home quickly without warning!

Why You will Need Professional Storm Damage Restoration after a Storm

Storms happen without warning causing severe destruction of property. Strong winds and flooding can cause damage to your home and business alike. As a property owner, you must deal with wind damage, flooding damage, hurricane damage, hail damage, and ice damage that are occasioned by the occurrence of a storm. All these events usually result in an expensive water damage. Water damage, especially from a storm, can be devastating. It can cause flooding, river flooding, and a rise in ground water levels. Flood water can cause serious property damage if it is not cleared and remediated fast enough. Under these circumstances, you will possibly need home restoration services.

Storm damage may also refer to the destruction resulting from strong winds. Additionally, a storm damage can also involve a hailstorm, and even a snowstorm. As such, the storm restoration process might involve managing ground water seepage, ice damage, water damage, hurricane damage, ice damming, river flooding, and wind damage restoration with other various services intertwined.

If you are looking for storm restoration services, it is important to look for a professional company that has a reputation of providing comprehensive home restoration services, repairs, and advice on storm remediation.

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth is here 24/7

call us (217) 428-2371

We do carpet cleaning in any business or office!

5/1/2019 (Permalink)

We know its hard to keep carpet clean in any business! Let us help.


Carpeting comes in a variety of different colors, textures, lengths, & materials. These factors play an integral role in how long your carpet will last overall in addition to the maintenance required to keep it up. One of the best ways to maintain the carpet at your home/business/office is regular vacuuming although over time your carpet will acquire damage that vacuuming won’t be able to fix.

When you encounter issues such as these the most effective solution for fixing them is the professional carpet cleaning from SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth. Our techs are highly trained to get the job done right "Like it never even happened."

24/7 we are here to help! give us a call!

(217) 428-2371

Does your family have a fire safety plan?

4/30/2019 (Permalink)

Sit down with your family and discuss a good plan of action incase there is a fire in your home.

Many families don't have a plan of action for a house fire. Being prepared is a smart idea because when there is a house fire many people panic and don't know what each family member is doing and where they are at. Which could have a bad outcome. 

Put your plan to the test: (National Fire Protection Association suggests)

  • Practice your home fire escape plan twice a year, making the drill as realistic as possible.
  • Make arrangements in your plan for anyone in your home who has a disability.
  • Allow children to master fire escape planning and practice before holding a fire drill at night when they are sleeping. The objective is to practice, not to frighten, so telling children there will be a drill before they go to bed can be as effective as a surprise drill.
  • It's important to determine during the drill whether children and others can readily waken to the sound of the smoke alarm. If they fail to awaken, make sure that someone is assigned to wake them up as part of the drill and in a real emergency situation.
  • If your home has two floors, every family member (including children) must be able to escape from the second floor rooms. Escape ladders can be placed in or near windows to provide an additional escape route. Review the manufacturer's instructions carefully so you'll be able to use a safety ladder in an emergency. Practice setting up the ladder from a first floor window to make sure you can do it correctly and quickly. Children should only practice with a grown-up, and only from a first-story window. Store the ladder near the window, in an easily accessible location. You don't want to have to search for it during a fire.
  • Always choose the escape route that is safest – the one with the least amount of smoke and heat – but be prepared to escape under toxic smoke if necessary. When you do your fire drill, everyone in the family should practice getting low and going under the smoke to your exit.
  • Closing doors on your way out slows the spread of fire, giving you more time to safely escape.
  • In some cases, smoke or fire may prevent you from exiting your home or apartment building. To prepare for an emergency like this, practice "sealing yourself in for safety" as part of your home fire escape plan. Close all doors between you and the fire. Use duct tape or towels to seal the door cracks and cover air vents to keep smoke from coming in. If possible, open your windows at the top and bottom so fresh air can get in. Call the fire department to report your exact location. Wave a flashlight or light-colored cloth at the window to let the fire department know where you are located.

Do you have pets? House fires claim many of them each year.

4/29/2019 (Permalink)

Your pets need help when a fire strikes your property!

House fires are disastrous and dangerous. Fires can grow and spread very quickly, causing serious damage to a house in a short period of time. The heat and smoke can be harmful and deadly to both humans and pets.

Every year, about 40,000 pets die in house fires. Fires are even started by pets about 1,000 times a year. Many house fires are easily preventable, and there are many preparatory safety measures to ensure that our pets have a chance to make it out safely in the event of a fire.

Every household should already have an emergency plan for their members so that everyone knows how to get out and where to meet. Include your pets in this equation, designating specific people to be in charge of specific pets so that as many people and animals get out alive as possible.

How to prevent a fire

4/18/2019 (Permalink)

Smoke alarms save lives!

You should know how to prevent a fire from happening. Here are some top tips:

  • Install fire alarms and smoke detectors. Early warning systems can help you get control of a fire before it spirals out of control. Smoke detectors can also help you get out safely. Install a smoke alarm on every level and in every room of your home, and test each alarm once a month to make sure it’s working.
  • Teach children the basics of fire safety and how to prevent,prepare for and deal with a fire.
  • Keep flammable items at least three feet away from anything hot. (e.g., fireplaces, space heaters, and ovens).
  • Stay in the kitchen. When you’re cooking, in case something catches fire.
  • Turn off appliances. Remember to shut off your stove when you’re done cooking.
  • Spray down surrounding areas before having an outdoor fire. If you live in a dry climate, don’t start a fire outdoors. If you do, make sure to spray down the surrounding area in case a spark lands outside of your fire pit.

Commercial Upholstery cleaning

4/18/2019 (Permalink)

We remove dust and allergens from furniture!

Make your customers, visitors and employees feel welcome and valued by having well cared for upholstery. Using specially designed products, equipment and methods, the technicians at SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth can help restore the beauty of your upholstered furniture. In addition, removing dust and allergens from sofas, chairs, office partitions, fabric panels and other upholstered items can lead to a healthier environment for everyone. We remove the hard-to-see contaminants that exist in upholstery, such as dead skin cells, oils and dust that can only be removed with a thorough professional cleaning.

Our methods are safe for all kinds of upholstery and fabrics and can help:

  • Remove stains and spots already present
  • Reduce the effects of wear on furniture
  • Extend the life of upholstery and protect your investment
  • Eliminate persistent odors

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth is here to help with any of your cleaning needs 24/7!

We make it "Like it never even happened."

Failure to clean a Commercial Kitchen Exhaust can lead to a fire

4/18/2019 (Permalink)

Don't let this be your commercial kitchen.

By law, kitchen exhaust cleaning is required for virtually every commercial cooking establishment in the United States. Restaurants, hospitals, hotels, employee cafeterias and other food service locations have a hood and ductwork over the stove to exhaust smoke, steam, and fumes out of the building.

These exhaust gases leave a residue on the inside of the ductwork. Heavy grease buildup, whether in a restaurant or home, creates a fire hazard.

Approximately one of three restaurant fires is caused by grease. A common scenario of how a kitchen exhaust fire starts is this:

  1. A flame flares up on the stove.
  2. The fire contacts the filters above the stove on the kitchen hood. The filters ignite.
  3. Since the exhaust fan is on, drawing air into the hood, through the filters, and up the duct, the flame on the filters is pulled into the duct.
  4. If significant grease residue exists on the duct interior, this can act as an accelerant and the fire spreads up the duct, perhaps all the way into the fan. We have seen fire climb up a ten-story duct to the fan on the roof and burn up the fan.

Don't let this happen to your Bussines. Let us clean it up. 

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth

75,000 commercial building fires each year in the United States

4/17/2019 (Permalink)

We can clean fire soot on items that have been in a fire!

Commercial fire can be devastating, harming both human and property.  Every year, there are as many as 75,000 commercial building fires in the United States.  U.S. fire departments responded to about 3,300 office property fires per year.  These fires caused an annual average of 85 civilian deaths, 1,325 civilian fire injuries and $3.2 billion in direct property damage, according to the (NFPA) National Fire Prevention Association.  Though some are small and cause relatively little harm, many others pose a great risk to life and property.   Fortunately, many fires can be prevented if you’re aware of the potential hazards. Here are several of the most common causes of commercial building fires.

Human Error 

Many commercial fires can be attributed to human error and are not meant to be malicious. For example, spilling liquids on electrical equipment, leaving a coffee pot on, or burning food in the kitchen can easily cause a fire to break out. To decrease the chances of this happening in your commercial building, perform risk assessments to determine if any changes need to be implemented, provide proper staff training, and ensure fire extinguishers are easily accessible throughout the building. 

Negligence fires are the result of someone not following proper procedures and can usually be easily avoided by proper staff training. For example, storing or handling flammable items improperly or covering electrical equipment that must have air can result in a fire that causes significant commercial fire damage. 

Unfortunately, arson is a frequent cause of commercial fires, particularly in industrial buildings and factories. This may be an act of vandalism, an attempt to collect insurance money or even the work of an unhappy employee. To minimize the damage associated with arson, you may want to consider installing an automatic sprinkler system. 
Faulty Wiring/ Electrics 

Electrical issues are another frequent cause of commercial fires. For example, outdated equipment, loose or frayed wires, and overloaded plugins can spark a fire with little to no advance warning. This is why it is so important to make certain your electrical equipment, including boilers, hot water heaters, and furnaces are in good working order and able to handle their workload. To ensure your equipment/ appliances are functioning properly; you may want to invest in a portable appliance tester (PAT). 

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth is here to help when a damage occurs!  

Give us a call today! (217) 428-2371

After the fire is out SERVPRO will be there to help!

4/17/2019 (Permalink)

We can be ready to help after a fire damage happens. We are here to make it "Like it never even happened."

When fire damage does occur, you want someone who can repair any of the structural damage, plus get rid of any smoke stains, odors, and soot home back to its condition preloss. That is where SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth technicians come into the picture. We are onsite quickly to mitigate the damages, secure your property, and start emergency cleaning to items of priority. While we are there, we inspect your home, assess the damage and write preliminary estimates to give you a comprehensive restoration plan, which includes smoke and odor removal, structural cleaning, deodorizing, content restoration, repairs, and more. 
Timing is critical once the fire is out. Fire damage repairs must start quickly to maximize the effectiveness and minimize damage. We are available to answer your call at any time and move into action right away. We recognize the emotional upset and trauma which you are going through, and considerately and quickly mitigate the damage on your property which is salvageable, like fixtures, household items, metals and other items. Our processes for cleaning and techniques of restoration can many times prevent replacement costs, therefore lowering total costs. Knowledge and skill are both needed for proper fire, and smoke damage restoration and our SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth professionals have the expertise to get the job done right. 

WHY we are the best when it comes to disasters

4/17/2019 (Permalink)

Anything can happen! Call us to make it "Like it never even happened."

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth keeps our service professional. Our services are readily available round the clock, and this is possible courtesy of our 24-hour services. Also, our services are available to both commercial and residential properties. We have a large team and enough equipment to deliver the best services to any disaster size.

If you are wondering WHY SERVPRO is the ideal place to get help after a fire damage experience, then we have the fact for you. Restoring your home after fire damage can certainly a hard thing to do. For that reason, the services of our experts come in handy towards ensuring that your property is in better shape after the disaster. 

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth has what to takes to help after a Fire damage!

Candle fires are more common than you might think

4/17/2019 (Permalink)

Call us (217) 428-2371

On average 25 home candle fires start every day. The simple nature of candles having an open flame is the key to why they can be so dangerous. CCFR recommends using battery operated, flameless candles.

According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), more than half of all candle fires start because candles were too close to things that could catch fire.

If you use regular candles, they need to be:

• At least a foot away from anything that can burn (curtains, walls, lamps, Christmas trees, etc.)
• Attended at all times  (never leave a child alone in a room with a candle)
• Used in sturdy, enclosed candleholders
• Placed in areas where they cannot be tipped over
• Avoided in homes where oxygen is used

Avoid using candles in the bedroom, where more than one-third of home candle fires begin, or other areas where people may fall asleep. In the event of a power outage use flashlights or other battery-operated power, not candles to light your home.

Avoid using candles in the bedroom, where more than one third of home candle fires begin, or other areas where people may fall asleep.

HELPFUL TIPS: After a business or Commercial damage

4/17/2019 (Permalink)

Tarping a roof can prevent additional damage.

When your business or commercial property is damaged by fire, water, or storm, your immediate concern should be temporary protective measures. For example, a damaged roof should be covered with roof tarps to prevent additional damage. Boarding up windows and doors can secure your business or commercial property until you can remove any water and debris.

After any storm use caution before entering your commercial property. Check for power lines, gas leaks, and structural damage. If any of your electrical equipment is wet, contact an electrician. Prepare loss information  for insurance claims and get independent estimates of the damages. 

Once you protect and secure your business or commercial property, professionals at SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth can begin the restoration process. You may need reconstruction work to get your property back to its preloss condition.


1. Protect Yourself From Contactor Fraud
Only hire licensed contractors to do repairs on your commercial property. Check with your local building department to ensure the contractor is licensed. If you hire a contractor, don’t pull the permits for them. If the contractor makes this request, it may be an indication that the contractor is not properly licensed. 

2. Take Photographs Of All Damage
Photographs of the after-storm condition of your commercial property can provide proof of damage for insurance and other purposes. Take the photos immediately after the damage and before repair work begins. Keep all your receipts for insurance purposes. 

Don’t wait for a storm to begin preparing. Take a complete set of photographs of your commercial property in its current condition to serve as “before” pictures. If and when a storm strikes your business you can take “after” pictures to show the full extent of the damage.   

3. Assess The Damage And Contact Your Local Building Department
After assessing the damage to your business or commercial property, contact your local building department for information on the required building permits. Permits are always required for any demolition or permanent repairs, reconstruction, roofing, filling, and other types of site development. 

Here are some reasons you should let SERVPRO help!

4/17/2019 (Permalink)

Always Ready

People and businesses rely on SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth to restore damaged property for many reasons.

Here are just 5.

1. We Get It
SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth understands your situation. You want to keep costs down, repair the damage, and get back to normal. Those are our goals, too.

2. SERVPRO Is Qualified
Our repair and restoration team members have the best training in the industry. 

3. We Respond To You Immediately
You can reach us 24/7. When a disaster strikes we respond as quickly as possible. 

4. You’re Part Of Our Team
We work with you and for you. You are in charge. You receive a complete explanation of the work we will do and why it needs to be done a certain way. Like you, we don’t appreciate surprises.

5. We’re Approved, Certified, And Experienced
We’re trained to IICRC (Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification) standards in fire and water cleanup and restoration. Our professionals attend SERVPRO continuing education classes. 

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth is here to help!

Let us make it "Like it never even happened."


Don't wait! When there is a damage act fast!

4/15/2019 (Permalink)

Faster to any disaster

Not many people know this but there are many reasons why experts recommend that you begin cleaning up and stabilizing a storm/water damage within 24 hours. Your safety comes first. Waterlogged homes are the perfect breeding ground for bacteria, mold and pathogens. 24 hours after a flood or water damage, toxic mold can begin to grow that puts your health and the health of your family members at risk. The odds of bad bacterial growth surge again after the 48 hour mark.

It's important that you call the cleanup specialists at SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth immediately to put a halt to any secondary damages caused by a Storm/water damage.

When a disaster strikes we are here to help!

Call us (217)428-2371


4/15/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO is always willing to do whatever it takes to make it better.

Did you know:

According to the National Weather Service (NOAA), “Approximately seventy-five percent of all Presidential disaster declarations are associated with flooding.”

NOAA lists the most common hazards in the United States as:

  • Flash Flooding
  • River Flooding
  • Storm Surge and Coastal Inundation from Tropical and Non-Tropical Systems
  • Burn Scars/Debris Flows (Caused by Wildfires)
  • Ice/Debris Jams
  • Snowmelt
  • Dry Wash (Caused by heavy rainfall in dry areas)
  • Dam Breaks/Levee Failure

WE are ALWAYS here to help!

Your local SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth is always ready 24/7. We are one of the top Restoration company's in Central Illinois. Our staff is highly trained and certified. 

Just because you haven’t experienced a flood/damage doesn’t mean you won’t in the future.

Tips on what to do before HELP arrives

4/10/2019 (Permalink)

Call us when a disaster strikes! We make it "Like it never even happened"

In the event of a storm damage, SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth wants our customers to stay safe and sound.  Here are some important emergency water damage tips that SERVPRO encourages our customers to review:

Shut off your water source or contact a qualified person to do it for you.

Turn off circuit breakers when access to the power distribution panel is safe from electrical shock.

Mop up as much of the excess area as you can.

Place aluminum foil or wood blocks between furniture legs and wet carpeting.

Move paintings, art objects, computers, documents, and other sensitive valuables to a dry place.

Don't enter affected areas if electrical outlets, switches, circuit breakers or electrical equipment are exposed to water.  You want to avoid electrical shock hazards.

Don't use your household vacuum cleaner to remove water; this could cause electrical shock or damage to the vacuum cleaner.

Don't turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet; and do not enter rooms where ceilings are sagging from retained water.

Have An Emergency? Call SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth

(217) 428-2371

Commercial property spring maintenance tips

3/21/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth makes it "Like it never even happened"

It’s time to spruce up your commercial property now that spring has arrived.

Here are several spring maintenance tips that reduce your liability and prep your property for warmer weather.

Inspect your property for water damage. Melting snow and ice can increase water flow around your property. Inspect the entire building for water damage. Check the exterior foundation, interior walls and windows for moisture, leaks or condensation, and clear out and repair any damaged gutters and downspouts.

Check for any roof damage to the property. Winter storms can damage your roof, but you may not notice the damage until the roof starts to leak. Perform a detailed inspection of the roof and note any repairs you need to make.

Touch up the exterior of the buildings. Cold winter weather can cause paint to chip, and flying debris can dent siding. Walk around the building, note any damaged paint or siding, and fix the areas. 

Make repairs to the parking lot.  If freezing temperatures created cracks or holes in the parking lot or sidewalks, fix the problem areas. You will want to power wash the area to remove dirt, mud or other debris, repaint any faded lines and repair broken signs. With a clean parking area, you reduce liability and improve visual appeal.

Remove winter grime and buildup on the exterior and interior by washing the windows. Clean windows boost productivity and improve the appearance of your commercial building.

Open windows and air out the stuffy building if possible to boot the ventilation. You may also inspect and clean the HVAC system and install fans or dehumidifiers in damp areas as needed.

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth

We are here to help!

(217) 428-2371 

Flood damage at your property?

3/21/2019 (Permalink)

What to do if you have a flood damage at your property

A flood can be one of the most devastating things to happen to your home and life. It can come from heavy rain, a broken pipe, defective appliances, sewage backup, and other unexpected causes. Because flooding is generally kept off your radar until it actually happens, you may find yourself overwhelmed with questions about how to act in the best interest of your safety and belongings. Here are three tips for responding to a home flood.

1. Identify the Damage

Is the source of the water a broken pipe or something more complicated? Is it clean water or contaminated? These kind of questions will help you decide how to proceed. If it's Category 2 or Category 3 contaminated water, it could be hazardous to enter the area without proper protective gear. Do not enter the wet area unless it is clear what kind of damage you have experienced.

2. Turn Off Power

Your next move should be to shut off the main power to your home in order to avoid electrocution in the initial cleanup stages. If this task will have you wading through the flooded area, do not proceed with the list and simply evacuate the home.

3. Call a Professional

Although there are minor things you can do while waiting for emergency restoration services to arrive, it is not wise to take on remediation without the proper training and experience. There are a mountain of risks that could end up worsening the damage if you’re not careful. Even simply waiting too long to begin cleanup poses a danger to your home and health, so it is best to act as soon as the water in your home is detected. Do not attempt to fix a damaged pipe or appliance on your own, either; always consult an expert.
If you experience a flood due to a broken pipe or other water event, it's important to act quickly and safely. Sometimes the safest, smartest thing to do is leave cleanup to the professionals. 

Call SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth

(217) 428-2371

Here are some common causes of water damage and how you can spot the warning signs.

3/21/2019 (Permalink)

Water damage on a ceiling

Flooding is very common in the spring season. While the damage from a flood is pretty apparent, there are many ways water damage can happen to your home when you don’t even realize it.

Here are some common causes of water damage and how you can spot the warning signs.

Weather is a common cause of water damage. Rains (snow and ice during the winter) cause flooding that can get into your home. Ice is an especially insidious cause of water damage because it expands as it freezes, causing cracks that allow more water to enter your home.

Even if it isn’t raining or snowing there is still moisture in the air. Damp air can lead to condensation and water damage to your walls. This is especially true of basements, bathrooms, and other damp areas of your home that don’t get much airflow.

Appliances like your washing machine, garbage disposal, water heater, toilet, and air conditioner can all contribute to water damage if they leak or stop draining properly.

Water from our pipes and plumbing systems can also cause water damage. Leaks and drips can go on for months, or even years, raising your water bill and doing unseen damage to your home.

So if these are all the ways water can sneak into your home, what are the signs of water damage?

Here are a few warning signs that you have a water damage problem in your home.

Standing water – This may sound pretty obvious, but if you notice water pooling in your house you have a water problem that needs to be taken care of immediately.

Bad smells – While water doesn’t normally have much of a smell, the mold and bacteria that grow in damp environments can give off a distinct musty, wet odor. If you smell mold or mildew you might have a water issue.

Stains and spots – Stains on the ceilings or walls can be a sign of water damage. You might have a leaky pipe or roof. Call a professional to determine the cause of the problem and to clean up the damage before it becomes a serious mold problem.

Peeling paint – Paint damaged by water will start to peel, bubble, or flake off.

Uneven surfaces – Water damage can cause floors, ceilings, walls, and other surfaces to warp and feel uneven.

Cracks – Water is always seeking the path of least resistance out of your home. Water can enter through cracks and once water finds it’s way in, the crack will expand allowing even more to get into your home. Make sure you seal all visible cracks on your property.

If you notice your home has water damage call the experts at SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth

(217) 428-2371

Spring showers may bring more than May flowers....Be ready for flooding!

3/20/2019 (Permalink)

Flooding in the streets is common when we have a lot of rain. Be prepared!

Spring showers can often lead to flooding conditions in central Illinois. These tips will help reduce the impact spring floods that my happen on your property. 

Watch for Pooling Water 

Look for places around your property where water pools, and channel it away from buildings. Make sure gutters and downspouts are clear of debris and they are directing water as intended.

Maintain Sump Pump 

If you have a sump pump, check to be sure it is operational before water starts rising. Consider a back-up generator to ensure your pump works when you need it most. Contact your insurance agent to add coverage in case your sump pump fails. 

Raise Storage Goods 

Use shelving and/or pallets to keep storage items off the floor to reduce the impact of small floods. In many situations, raising boxes just a few inches will be enough to keep storage goods above the water line. 

Cut Power if Necessary 

As rising water approaches the level of electrical outlets, you risk having a live current flow through all the water. Cut the power if you can safely do so without standing in water. Otherwise, evacuate and contact an electrician to cut the power before you go back in for recovery.

Keep Storm Drains Clear

If you see water pooling around a storm drain, the drain may be clogged with debris. Clearing the debris will help keep the water flowing away from your neighborhood.

Be Aware on the Road 

Be careful when driving during spring storms, especially when you hear flash flood warnings. Never drive into fully submerged roadway. The water surface will be at the same level as the pavement you can see. This view can deceive you into thinking the water is shallow because you cannot see how the road dips under the surface. 

Act Fast 

When a flood happens, you need to act fast to dry out any wet items, particularly structural materials like walls and flooring. 

At SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth 

We are Ready to Help
Call Today - (217)428-2371

Helpful tips to prevent flood damage to your property

3/20/2019 (Permalink)

We all know that prevention is the best medicine, but floods can happen at any moment from any number of causes. By completing regularly scheduled home maintenance and keeping an eye out for common warning signs, you can minimize the chances of a flood. However, nothing can give you a 100% guarantee of never having a flood. In that case, preparation is the best way to minimize water damage.

First, it’s a good idea to know your flood risk. Are you in a potential flood zone? Is your yard sloped away from your foundation? Knowledge is power so the more you know about how your home might flood, the more steps you can take to prevent it or minimize damage from it.

Using waterproof building materials is a great way to reduce damage from flooding and there are waterproof sealants and paints that can be applied to existing structures. In particular, there are many protective coatings for block or poured concrete walls which are common in basements.

Keep your valuables and irreplaceable items such as photo albums, yearbooks, and important documents on high shelves. Do the same with chemicals and paints. If they leak into flood waters, they could cause additional damage. Any items put away for storage should be in air and water-tight plastic containers. Never leave boxes or items on the floor; instead, invest in raised shelving units.

It may also be a good idea to raise appliances and electronics off the ground. Get wires and power strips out from behind your tv stand and organize them in a way that keeps them out of the flood danger zone. Put washing machines and dryers on cinder blocks or sections of lumber to reduce the chances that rising water levels will affect them.

If a flood does strike, turn off electricity, gas, and water lines and place buckets under active leaks. If the water is pooling slowly, soak up as much of it as possible to reduce the potential damage. Calling SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth at the first sign of a flood is the best way to reduce water damage. Our highly trained technicians will solve your immediate problems and ensure you don’t experience lasting effects or further damage.

We are here ready to help!

Give us a call (217)428-2371

We are here to make it "Like it never even happened."

3/20/2019 (Permalink)

Some of our trucks heading off to a job.

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth is here ready to help when you need us. Our friendly staff will be there quickly with smiles on their faces. We make sure we make our customers are confident and comfortable in all the services that we provide. Our goal is to make it "Like it never even happened." We grew up in this community. The people in it is important to us. We try to give back in many ways, such as food drives and supporting local teams.

Whether you have had a flooded kitchen or a fire in an entire industrial complex, we are trained, equipped and experienced to restore, or even rebuild your property. We are available 24/7 here and ready to help. 

"Faster to any disaster" call us (217) 428-2371

Smoke Particle are so small only a professional can clean it right!

3/20/2019 (Permalink)

Smoke particles in the air

Did you Know:

If your home has been affected by smoke from a fire, it is possible that ash particles may still be present, even after the smoke has gone.

Houses, sheds and garages can be affected and the ash can leave potential health hazards. If your home has been affected by smoke, make sure you take steps to clean up any ash and protect your health and safety.

Smoke particles can be as small as .03 microns, which means they can hide in every nook and cranny. Due to size, it is very hard to remove smoke damage unless done by a professional. We are here when you need us.

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth has the experience to repair and deodorize your home or business after a fire. 

Here's what to do if your pipes freeze

3/20/2019 (Permalink)

1. Shut off your water and, if necessary, electricity

Go to the home’s main water valve and shut it off immediately. (And don’t wait for a burst pipe to find out where the main water valve is located.) Electricity should also be cut off to the section of the home where the water damage has occurred, Thompson said. If you live in an apartment complex and don’t have control over the building’s water supply, he added, be sure to contact your building manager or landlord.

2. Call a plumber.

Not all plumbing companies have 24-hour service, so it’s a good idea to research and choose one in advance so you’re not scrambling after water floods your house. Plumbing costs vary depending on where the pipes are located and how bad the damage is, Thompson said. You may also need to contact a water damage professional, he said, particularly if carpeting, flooring, walls or ceilings are severely damaged.

3. Call SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth


Safety tips from a Storm Chaser! Storms can be DANGEROUS

3/20/2019 (Permalink)

Be Careful!

Spring is here! Here are some tips to keep you safe during this seasons storms.

  • Be prepared! Get severe weather info before you hit the road. The Storm Prediction Center Website has regularly updated weather outlooks.
  • Have a travel safety kit in your car. It should include food, batteries, heating packs, a prepaid cellphone that’s always charged (in case your regular phone dies), matches and water.
  • Get the latest apps. Apple and Android phones both have helpful weather apps you can access while on the road. Search "radar" in your network’s app store.
  • Radio is your friend. A charged NOAA weather radio is your best bet (they’re good for home, too); or at the very least, listen to local stations on your car stereo for updated warnings.
  • Have an escape route. If you dare venture out in risky weather, make sure you have a backup plan and know the area’s roadways to get around the storm.
  • Stop driving in hail. If you’re in a bad hailstorm, pull your vehicle over. If you continue driving, you’ll just add momentum to the storm and can blow out your windshield.
  • Don’t stop under an overpass. Strong winds can be funneled through narrow spaces, such as under the freeway, and can even accelerate its speed.
  • Stay in your car, unless you’re nearing a tornado. In most cases, you’re safest in your car. BUT if a tornado is bearing down, find the nearest ditch or low point and cover your head.
  • Don’t try to outrun the tornado. If the tornado is moving side to side, across your field of view, you’re in a safe position. Don’t try to outrun a tornado, as you don’t know how fast it’s moving, how close it is or if it will change direction.

 If a disaster does strike we are here to help!

Give us a call (217) 428-2371

WSOY Food Drive

10/5/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth likes to help that's WHY SERVPRO takes pride in doing drives like this!

SERVPRO, on behalf of the Warrensburg-Latham High School, We did a food drive to help businesses/individuals in our community. We donated a “truckload” of food and water (approx. 430 pounds) to the WSOY Food Drive. Any/all donations were promoted on SERVPRO’s social media outlets!!! We take pride in helping our local community. 

Before you organize a food drive, make sure you contact your local food bank. The food bank will give you advice on:

  • Food safety
  • What types of items (food and non-food) they can safely accept
  • When food is needed the most


The Feeding America network maintains the highest standards of food safety, which means that not every product is suitable for donation. It requires time and effort for the food bank to sort and inspect all donated items to ensure that they are safe.

Find your local food drive:

To maximize your efforts, Feeding America suggests that you also consider a “virtual” food drive to help support your local food bank.

Important Files In Water Damage

9/10/2018 (Permalink)

Garage flooded

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth received an emergency call about a flooded top floor that was seeping through the floor into a garage full of files. It was very serious out of the calls we have received. We handle all jobs importantly. Almost everything was affected:  drywall, concrete,tile, files, and expensive equipment.  A nightmare you can imagine if you are a homeowner such as this one. We quickly shifted into gear working to save and restore as much as we possibly could. The customers spoke clearly with what they wanted us to do and our crew did what was wanted and needed. The items and files that were soaked were taken back to the warehouse stored and dried. One satisfied client story after another is SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth’s never ending goal!

Important Files In Water Damage

9/10/2018 (Permalink)

Garage flooded

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth received an emergency call about a flooded top floor that was seeping through the floor into a garage full of files. It was very serious out of the calls we have received. We handle all jobs importantly. Almost everything was affected:  drywall, concrete,tile, files, and expensive equipment.  A nightmare you can imagine if you are a homeowner such as this one. We quickly shifted into gear working to save and restore as much as we possibly could. The customers spoke clearly with what they wanted us to do and our crew did what was wanted and needed. The items and files that were soaked were taken back to the warehouse stored and dried. One satisfied client story after another is SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth’s never ending goal!

Promoting the Crew

8/7/2018 (Permalink)

Crew Bonding!

We at SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth have an amazing production team! We enjoy working as a group and finding solutions that help the home. We want things done right and quickly so that we get the homeowners back into their homes. We are proud of the differences we make! We make it "like it never happened"! 

Here is a few of our team leaders, Andrew and Austin are true standouts!! They love what they do and it shows. Our customer satisfaction surveys are literally the best in the industry thanks to the hard work, dedication to detail, and expertise we offer to all of our clients. Call us today and let SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth show you the difference in partnering with us! 217-428-2371


8/7/2018 (Permalink)

The peek of the flowers!

The owner of SERVPRO, Tracy Kent and the Marketing Manager, Anisa Gallagher took the time to plant these flowers. So, your local SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth is out and about dropping off “thank you for helping us grow” flower jars.We just want to show all the gratitude to the jobs that make us feel like we are barely working. To all the customers that are so kind and cooperative.

We appreciate the people who help us grow as a company. We love what we do and letting customers know that we are glad to always give an extra hand. SERVPRO understands fully all situations and feel for all casualties. We really acknowledge your business and look forward to SERVPRO-ing you in the future! 217-428-2371


8/7/2018 (Permalink)

The glimpse at the deliciousness!

As you may know about the flowers we give out to the past customers we help. We also take the time to pass out SERVPRO cookies to the Insurance companies that direct people that are in need of us. We order dozens of cookies and we make homemade goodies and mixes. SERVPRO is always ready to do work and is happy when recommended to do so. We feel very honored to be what insurance companies think first to call. We show appreciation to them for helping us truly do what we love to do. Your local SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth is out and about dropping off cookies. We really give thanks to the businesses and look forward to SERVPRO-ing you in the future! 217-428-2371


8/7/2018 (Permalink)

The Kent Boys

SERVPRO is a helping company, but in the office we are always helping each other out with anyone's needs. This workplace is always a calm and comfortable place. We are always open to suggestions and how everyone feels. We want everyone to feel important. We all quite often teach one another how to do things that the other might not know how to perform. Even things that keep everyone busy and for all hands on deck. We are very big on teamwork and believe that every employee has a role. We often have staff meetings so that things can be leveled for what the week holds for us. 

Here is a picture of the General Manager, Ryan and one of our Production Techs, Gabe. Ryan is teaching Gabe things that could help at!

We are Hiring!

8/2/2018 (Permalink)

Call us today at 217-428-2371!

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth is looking to hire a full-time Production Technician to join our team! Do you love helping people through difficult situations? Then, don’t miss your chance to join our Franchise as a new Production Technician. In this position, you will be making a difference each and every day. We have a sincere drive toward the goal of helping make fire and water damage “Like it never even happened." We are seeking someone who is comfortable working hard in challenging situations, enjoys meeting new people, has excellent communication skills, and is a serious multi-tasker. If you are self-motivated and have superb interpersonal skills, then you’ll thrive in this work environment. Are you highly dependable and super-excited about routinely exceeding expectations? Then you may be our perfect hero! As a valued SERVPRO employee, you will receive a competitive pay rate, with opportunity to learn and grow. A few position requirements and job responsibilities include: -Effective oral communication skills -High school diploma/GED -Valid drivers license -Ability to work with/around cleaning products/chemicals -Ability to successfully complete a background check subject to applicable law -Experience in cleaning/restoration a plus -Inventory and load the work vehicle with equipment, products, and supplies needed for each project -Prepare rooms/areas for work activities. Set up staging area and equipment for each project -Perform production processes following SERVPRO production guidelines per work order per crew chief directions -Ensure clear two-way communication with crew chief and other technicians (especially regarding customer needs and concerns) Please contact us today if you would like to learn more and/or apply to this great local career opportunity! We would look forward to hearing from you! Call us at 217-428-2371 and/or email SERVPRO5682@SERVPROdecaturforsyth.com with your latest resume.

Tanner Tough

8/2/2018 (Permalink)

We at SERVPRO at Decatur/Forsyth are supporting 13 year old, middle school student, Tanner Gillen, who is battling brain cancer.  He is seeking radiation treatment in St. Louis, MO currently.  He has suffered a few setbacks along the way.  His spirits are still high and his family attributes a great deal of his positiveness from Tanner's friends/family/community.  We at SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth ask that in support of Tanner and the entire Gillen Family, please share and spread this information to raise awareness of an upcoming fundraising car wash will take place from 10am-4pm at the Decatur Conference Center and Hotel.  The car wash has a minimum $5 donation for all partcipants.  #TannerTough.  Hope to see you there and thank you for participating!

Book your appointment today!

6/1/2018 (Permalink)

It's June 1st and SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth is ready to schedule your duct and/or carpet cleaning.  When you book a duct cleaning with us prior to September 1, 2018 we will give you a 10% discount.  If you choose to book a carpet cleaning between now and September 1, 2018 you will also receive a 10% discount.  Our trained professionals will vacuum, clean, disinfect and deodorize your duct ventilation system.  If you are interested in carpet cleaning we will spot treat, deep clean, disinfect and deodorize your carpets.  No job is too big or is too mall for SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth.  For over 27 years, SERVPRO has been your local choice for duct and carpet cleaning services.  Interested in other cleaning services SERVPRO has expertise in?  We encourage you to call us to find out!  We at SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth look forward to speaking with you soon. 

Watch Out, Deer Crossing?

6/1/2018 (Permalink)

About a month ago, SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth received a request to perform an estimate at a commercial property that had suffered a deer incident.  Apparently, a very large deer had gotten confused (in a very high traffic area of town) and had run through a plate glass window over the weekend.  Upon arrival, our production team discovered that not only had the deer broken the plate glass window, but the window did not stop the deer from running throughout the property all while leaving bodily fluids behind.  The broken glass was spread out at least a few hundred feet and the bodily fluids of the deer had spread into the back storage area of the property.  Needless to say, it was a gruesome sight, television worthy even.  Our excellent production team was able to utilize our various SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsth equipment and chemicals to get the property back to "Like it never even happened."

How good is our SERVPRO Team?

3/27/2018 (Permalink)

What an awesome testament to how great our SERVPRO team truly is!

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth received an emergency call about a flooded basement.  It was similar to calls we have received before yet had some unique facets to it as well.  As SERVPRO arrived at the homeowners location we discovered a beautifully well done finished basement that was saturated by water from the steps down.  Almost everything was affected:  drywall, concrete, carpeting, tile, laminate flooring, antique furniture, and a custom made pool table and gorgeous bar.  A nightmare you can imagine if you are a homeowner such as this one.  We quickly shifted into gear working to save and restore as much as we possibly could.  Per Jim and Judi Humphrey in a thank you letter they stated “The speed, efficiency and professionalism of your response to our flooded basement was truly impressive.”  “Everyone was very responsive to our needs and worked hard to mitigate every issue.”  One satisfied client story after another is SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth’s never ending goal!

Food Drive

10/3/2017 (Permalink)

This is the SERVPRO trailer being filled with food!

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth is working with Warrensburg-Latham school to help with a food drive. A local radio station along with many companies, volunteers, and amazing people put on this food drive every year. The school and the community always find great ways that make doing this exciting and fun as a team. This year the goal is 1.5 million pounds of food! It may seem like a lot, but we have reached it before.  We are always eager to reach pass the goal and continue helping the drive. We hope to do as much as we can when it means coming together as a community. the school also rewards the students for the massive gestures they do during the event. 

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth is thrilled to be helping withs event!

Father's fire damage

6/22/2017 (Permalink)

Smoke damage

SERVPRO is amazing! Thank you to those who are helping clean up my Dad's place after 2 small chair fires! Amazing people with very understanding hearts! Tracy, Pam, and the rest of the team are doing fabulous! They are VERY thorough on their work and they keep the homeowner(s) in the loop with everything going on! Amazing company!


Tracy Friel

Facts to know!

6/8/2017 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth

Need Emergency Service? Call Us 24/7 – 217-428-2371

Water Damage Timeline

Within Minutes

  • Water quickly spreads throughout your property, saturating everything in its path.
  • Water is absorbed into walls, floors, upholstery, and belongings.
  • Furniture finishes may bleed, causing permanent staining on carpets.
  • Photographs, books, and other paper goods start to swell and warp.

Hours 1 - 24:

  • Drywall begins to swell and break down.
  • Metal surfaces begin to tarnish.
  • Furniture begins to swell and crack.
  • Dyes and inks from cloth and paper goods spread and stain.
  • A musty odor appears.

48 Hours to 1 Week:

  • Mold and mildew may grow and spread.
  • Doors, windows, and studs swell and warp.
  • Metal begins to rust and corrode.
  • Furniture warps and shows signs of mold.
  • Paint begins to blister.
  • Wood flooring swells and warps.
  • Serious biohazard contamination is possible.

More Than 1 Week:

  • Restoration time and cost increase dramatically; replacing contaminated materials and structural rebuilding may be extensive.
  • Structural safety, mold growth, and biohazard contaminants pose serious risks to occupants.

About SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth specializes in the cleanup and restoration of residential and commercial property after a fire, smoke or water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.

Basement floods in Decatur, IL

5/23/2017 (Permalink)

Estate items in a flooded basement

On Monday, May 1st, Mary and George woke up to find several inches of  water in their basement due to sump pump failure.  By 8:30am, SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth was on site. The basement was home to George's train, as well as many sentimental items.

The office sent four staff members to quickly transfer contents to the homeowners garage, "they were organized, careful, and considerate of our belongings."

The flooded basement contained sentimental estate items of Mary's late mother. Mary and George were very concerned that the items that were moved were handled with care.

"Everyone at SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth was professional, friendly, and courteous.  Thank you so much for your hard work. I have been recommending SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth to everyone who may need your help."

A winter morning fire

5/22/2017 (Permalink)

Living room fire that burned through the roof

It was an early Tuesday morning in January.  A fireplace smoldered over night and somehow reignited and caught fire in the living room.

SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth was on site soon after it was extinguished. SERVPRO staff began packing up emergency clothing, and other essentials to help the family.

The young family was devastated.  "When we had our fire, we were devastated.  We lost almost everything to either fire, smoke, or water damage."

"SERVPRO came to the house, took all of our belongings that were salvageable, cleaned them, boxed them according to the rooms they belonged and stored them until we were ready to move into our new house.  Then, they brought the boxes to us and put them in their perspective rooms."

"SERVPRO was such a blessing to us in one of the worst periods in our lives by taking a big burden off of our shoulders."







Early Morning Broken Pipe

3/17/2017 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Decatur employee working on clean up.

At 3:30am on March 3rd, Katie Hill woke up in a panic.  After hearing running water, she rushed downstairs to find a broken pipe in her basement ceiling, with water pouring everywhere. Water was soaking the ceiling tiles, the cabinets, and the floor.

She called SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsth's after hours answering service.  A manager from SERVPRO called her back ten minutes later and they were on site within an hour.  Katie Hill said, "I never knew you were on call 24 hours a day, but I'm sure glad I called when I did!"

Within in about 90 minutes SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth staff were making great headway on the extraction and clean up. Within four days, SERVPRO of Decatur/Forsyth had Katie's structure and contents dried out.


6/6/2016 (Permalink)

As a local business owner in the community, I am often asked to make monetary donations: to social programs, local causes, and schools.  

Last fall, I was asked to donate money to help purchase books for each first-grader in Warrensburg-Latham Elementary to take home. The school wanted to provide a resource that the kids could take home and discuss with their parents, and refer back to.  The books tackled a variety of social issues.  The books explain the importance of manners, respect, and how to be a good friend. 

Imagine my surprise when I receive these notes in the mail. The students wrote me individual thank you letters.

 It appears the kids also learned a lesson in gratitude.  Well-done Mrs. Herman's class! 


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