Recent Posts

Can You Let Chicago Home Water Damage Dry on Its Own?

7/25/2022 (Permalink)

Ceiling with water damaged areas of drywall removed Our water damage technicians have the equipment and experience to restore your Chicago home to preloss condition.

SERVPRO Water Restoration Technicians Remediate Moisture with Powerful Drying Equipment

Water damage can be a distressing sight, particularly if the damage has been ongoing for some time. However, elevated moisture can impact more than surface-level structures. It may have microbial growth present, creating potential air quality concerns for homeowners. While letting it dry may seem like the most straightforward solution, this strategy can backfire. It is safer for professional restoration services to stop damage to property and air quality.

SERVPRO’s 24-hour availability for water damage cleanup in Chicago ensures that residents receive remediation, repairs, and restoration services necessary to return their homes to a pre-damage state. SERVPRO tools, including extractors and structural drying equipment, are designed to eliminate excess moisture from surfaces and the air more efficiently than DIY solutions.

Why DIY Solutions Can Exacerbate Water Damage

The key to effective water damage drying is dehumidification combined with air movement after thorough water removal. Chicago homeowners may feel ready to tackle wet drywall or carpet independently. However, without proper inspection tools, they may not be aware of:

  • The scope of the water damage
  • The source causing the continuous leaks or moisture
  • The presence of mold
  • The extent to which structures have been saturated
  • Whether other crucial systems, like electrical or HVAC, are affected by water

SERVPRO trains technicians to detect and mitigate all of these factors in ways that help homeowners save on potential restoration costs. Water damage requires a careful balance of air movement and dehumidification to prevent secondary surface damage and relative humidity increases.

SERVPRO Water Damage Mitigation and Drying for Residential Structures

Chicago SERVPRO technicians can deploy a full suite of tools for moisture removal, such as:

  • Penetrating and surface-level inspection sensors and meters calibrated for materials like wood and drywall, as well as thermal imaging cameras to inspect water damage behind surfaces
  • Portable and truck-mounted extractors that can deploy heated solvents for cleaning of carpet and upholstery and pulling excess moisture out of nooks, crannies, and structural materials
  • EPA-registered antimicrobial solutions designed to remediate microbes and odor-causing bacteria to sanitize and restore space
  • Structural drying tools, which include commercial-grade air movers and dehumidifiers
  • Odor control tools, such as wet foggers, odor counteractant beads, and hydroxyl generators

Temporary containment measures like polyethylene drying chambers can accelerate water cleanup in open spaces. Specialized techniques that target wet carpet and pad, as well as upholstery and drapes, can keep restoration on-site without the need to move belongings offsite.

In a typical residential water damage incident, technicians can set up air movement equipment every 10 to 16 linear feet to cover approximately 150 square feet per unit. These air movers are typically paired with low-grain refrigerant (LGR) dehumidifiers to collect humidity pulled out of surfaces and into the air.

For dehumidification, moist air is passed over cold refrigerant coils and collected for disposal in a treated sewer. At the same time, the LGR units expel warm, dry air that is pushed toward necessary surfaces by the air movers. High-powered desiccant dehumidifiers are also available for remediation of damage to structural materials. Technicians carefully calculate drying goals and position air movement and dehumidification units accordingly to save as much material as is feasible after a water damage disaster.

SERVPRO of West Loop / Bucktown / Greektown is proud to say that We’re Faster To Any Size Disaster and ready to address homeowners ’ concerns 24/7. Call (773) 434-9100 to get started.

Can Chicago Homeowners Perform Their Own Fire Damage Inspections?

7/25/2022 (Permalink)

Garage and car burned down by fire damage Contact SERVPRO for certified technicians to help with fire damage remediation efforts in your Chicago home or business.

Chicago SERVPRO Fire Cleanup Professionals Can Detect Smoke, Soot, and Water Damage

Even when it comes from minor kitchen stove flare-ups, fire damage can appear surface-level at first glance. While that is sometimes the case, Chicago property owners may not immediately detect other odors and residues left behind by it. When extinguishers or water put out a home fire, the materials used to suppress flames can impact HVAC systems and other surfaces. These components may require professional restoration to salvage affected structures and belongings thoroughly.

Chicago SERVPRO fire damage cleanup technicians can perform mitigation per restoration industry best practices established by the IICRC. The key to saving the most items possible after a fire is having the right tools for the job and knowing how smoke damage works. SERVPRO staff is educated in both topics and uses commercial-grade equipment and knowledge to return fire-affected properties to a clean, soot- and odor-free condition.

Can Homeowners Inspect Fire Damage Themselves After a Fire?

While homeowners can determine the extent of a minor, surface-level disaster, fires affect more than just a wall or ceiling even after a small incident.

  • Soot particles settle in ducts and HVAC components, where they can become sticky or corrosive on exposure to moisture. These residues can collect dust and potentially create future fire damage risks while lowering home air quality
  • Cooking fires involving meats leave greasy, odorous protein residues nearly invisible to the naked eye. These soils require specialized enzyme digester and sanitation solutions for removal. Residents can unintentionally spread residues during a DIY inspection, spreading unpleasant odors throughout the home
  • Smoke residues can impart soot and soils on electrical components that put them at risk for future ignition
  • Water damage from flame suppression can also impact wall cavities, carpets, and pads, which can allow for mold proliferation in as little as 24 to 48 hours

While a DIY inspection may seem like a good idea on paper for saving on restoration costs, this approach can potentially cost more. Handling this process without professional assistance can hurt a proof of loss claim and unintentionally damage structures and belongings in the home.

SERVPRO Fire Inspection Tools and Process

During fire damage inspections, SERVPRO techs can look at the following:

  • Ventilation registers, ducts, and other components
  • Pretesting results for cleaning solutions to determine ideal cleaning strategies
  • Moisture levels in various surfaces, which are ascertained by penetrating and non-penetrating sensors and meters as well as imaging
  • Mold detection if conditions that allow its growth are present

SERVPRO's multi-pronged inspection process prepares homes for a thorough cleaning process that pinpoints structural damages and restores as much as possible to a pre-damage condition. Technicians can also demolish unsalvageable drywall, flooring, and insulation per homeowners' and insurance adjusters' wishes.

Light soils may only require cleaning with dry cleaning sponges or mild, EPA-registered antimicrobials. Alkaline cleaners, dry ice blasting, or soda ash abrasion cleaning may be necessary for more odorous or heavy-duty fire damage soiling on walls, ceilings, and fixtures. Crew members also inspect the property during and after restoration to ensure that restoration goals are met per homeowners' and SERVPRO's standards.

Homeowners can receive "Like it never even happened" quality services from SERVPRO of West Loop / Bucktown / Greektown when they call (773) 434-9100.

Why Is There Mold Damage in My Chicago Residence?

7/25/2022 (Permalink)

Two SERVPRO vans on a city street Finding mold in your Chicago home does not need to cause panic. Contact SERVPRO right away for an investigation and remediation.

SERVPRO Mold Remediation Technicians Can Sanitize and Restore Property 24/7

While many factors contribute to residential mold damage proliferation, elevated moisture is easily the most influential and challenging to mitigate without professional assistance. Humidity and the microbes that thrive on it can hide in nooks and crannies to eat away at drywall, clothing, carpeting, books, and other possessions. Eventually, this proliferation can impact a home's safety and structural integrity.

SERVPRO's mold damage mitigation services return Chicago residences to a safe, comfortable, almost microbe-free condition. Highly-trained technicians use sophisticated tools, inspection technologies, and commercial-grade personal protective equipment (PPE) to prevent secondary damages and fully restore the property.

How Moisture Allows Mold to Thrive

Like a plant, mold spores spread in environments with enough moisture for growth and sustainability.

To minimize microbial growth risk, homeowners can:

  • Have their homes inspected for moisture leaks or water damage can catch the early signs of spores before they can spread further
  • Keep living spaces clean and dry. So long as the conditions are kept at bay, mold growth can be prevented and minimized even when water-related incidents occur
  • Maintain relative humidity levels below 50 percent. EPA guidelines suggest between 30 and 50 percent to avoid damage to wood and other contents in the home
  • Ensure that homes have adequate ventilation. Regular cycling of clean, dry air is essential to keeping moisture levels stable, thereby lowering mold growth potential

SERVPRO mold remediation technicians can perform all of these services during cleanup. However, total mold removal is not guaranteed due to the microscopic nature of individual spores. Small amounts of these microbes naturally exist in all living spaces and outdoors. SERVPRO tools are designed to lower spore proliferation to pre-contamination levels for homes experiencing excess microbial contamination or conditions that can exacerbate it.

SERVPRO Education Efforts Prepare Technicians for Mold Damage Cleanup

SERVPRO staff, restoration technicians, and franchise owners receive extensive training in mold growth because this type of disaster does not occur in a vacuum. Elevated moisture levels from such incidents as:

  • Home water damage
  • Storms and floods
  • Fire suppression

SERVPRO-certified technicians can implement mold remediation solutions per Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) standards for repairing structural materials and belongings.

SERVPRO franchise owners receive a hands-on 15-day crash course in restoration practices for mold cleanup at SERVPRO's Corporate Training Facility. This course includes participating in demonstrative restoration at the Corporate Training House, designed for realistic disaster cleanup practice.

Restoration staff also have access to ongoing e-Learning opportunities that are self-paced. Each module provides video and supplemental education materials to prepare team members for the knowledge tests that conclude each module. These e-Learning units ensure that staff members remain up-to-date about restoration industry best practices. This knowledge allows technicians to attain additional certification opportunities that expand their restoration skill set.

Credit and non-credit continuing education courses are available to SERVPRO team members and professionals from other industries. These courses are particularly valuable for individuals who work in insurance claims adjustment and real estate management. Units cover fire and water damage restoration, mold in the restoration industry, and restorative drying practices.

Residents who need emergency-response "Like it never even happened" restoration services can count on SERVPRO of West Loop / Bucktown / Greektown for 24/7 restoration availability. Call (773) 434-9100 to have a team at the property within hours of first contact.

Quick Professional Water Cleanup in Chicago Can Save Time and Money for Homeowners

7/23/2022 (Permalink)

water blister on ceiling, a leak Ceiling leaking? This Chicago homeowner called SERVPRO to repair the plumbing and restore the ceiling, "Like it never even happened."

Cost-efficient Water Restoration Is Key to Protecting Homes in the Chicago Area

When a water incident in your Chicago home damages flooring, personal belongings, and the structure of your home, it is hard to prioritize your next steps. Many homeowners consider water restoration a do-it-yourself project, but good intentions can be counterproductive. Failure to let a certified water restoration technician assess the situation and recommend a course of action can cause long-term and secondary damage to the house.

To speed up water cleanup in Chicago by applying industry best practices, call SERVPRO and let our certified technicians take over. Thanks to our field experience and training with leaders in the industry, we can bring to your home the latest techniques and equipment for water removal and drying. 

Water remediation is a multi-pronged approach, and each item may require a specific set of actions to return to normal. 

Some of the building blocks of a successful job include-

  • Controlled demolition of drywall and other surfaces saturated with water and vulnerable to secondary damage.
  • Removal of debris and discarding of unsalvageable items. The longer they stay in the residence, the more they can become a threat to the environment and a breeding ground for mold.
  • Water extraction with pumps, wands, and specialty drying solutions. Sometimes this may include carefully taking inventory of certain items before moving them to an off-site location for cleaning and drying.

When water invades your home, SERVPRO of West Loop/ Bucktown/ Greektown is ready to help. Call our expert team at (773) 434-9100, and let us show you why we are leaders in the

SERVPRO - Chicago Fire Damage - How it Forms

7/23/2022 (Permalink)

charred trusses in an attic Soot and charring destroy structural elements and emit gross odors. Call SERVPRO for fire damage cleanup and restoration for your Chicago property.

The Characteristics of Fire and Soot in Chicago Homes 

Most fire restoration costs to a Chicago home come from removing smoke and soot residues. Even a small fire in one area, such as a kitchen, can leave a residue coating throughout multiple rooms.

SERVPRO is an expert in restoring the effects of Chicago home fire damage. We start by determining what burned and how the combustion of the material forms the different types of residues. Once our SERVPRO technicians understand that, it is easier for us to determine how to clean and restore everything from a single-family home to an apartment complex.

Combustion needs three sources: Oxygen, heat, and fuel. When all three mix, materials burn. With high incomplete combustion, residues form and settle on everything the smoke reaches. We say poorly, but if all three sources were in a perfect mix, the fire would burn everything faster, causing more damage and replacement costs. The smoke moving throughout a home is composed of solid particles of carbon that did not burn completely, gases released from burning organic material, and tiny liquid particles called aerosols.

The aerosols and solid particles are what make smoke visible. If they are not present, then the gases are invisible. That is more dangerous since nitrogen oxides and sulfur dioxide comprise the gases. Both are very hazardous to anyone near an active fire, and why every firefighter now uses a breathing mask. The aerosols and carbon particles also leave a visible residue after the smoke settles and absorb odors which provide the smells found in a structure after the fire has been put out.

That also means the smoke leaves a heavier residue than the cooler fire. A lower temperature heat source and less oxygen mean thicker smoke since the fire burns less clean. The smoke travels less distance, which means less property is affected further away from the fire's origin point

If you need our services, call SERVPRO of West Loop / Bucktown / Greektown at (773) 434-9100.

Equipment SERVPRO Uses to Remove Water Damage in Chicago

7/23/2022 (Permalink)

flooded living room, brownish sofa Water removal and protecting furnishings and belongings are the aims of SERVPRO techs during extraction in a Chicago condo.

Extraction, Drying, and Demolition Play a Role in Water Damage Mitigation

Removing all traces of water after a flood is a nightmare for most homeowners. Water soaks into everything in a home, from tile grout to wood paneling, creating an impossible scenario for people armed only with household cleaning products. There's a reason why SERVPRO brings its heaviest equipment to these jobs: they require the fast, firm capabilities of industrial machinery. Otherwise, water may remain on surfaces, in materials, and suspended in the air until the structure sustains severe damage. These are examples of a few super-heavy machines we use to remove water after significant flooding from a split pipe or other water source.

Extractors

Extractors are the first key to Chicago water removal projects. These heavy pumps are what most people think of when they think of 'industrial water removal' - they remove high volumes of water from the structure in as little time as possible.

Esporta Washing System

We have access to an array of super-heavy-duty clothing washers and dryers to clean any drapes or smaller fabrics as soon as possible. An often overlooked part of the water removal process, clothing can be permanently destroyed if it is not cleaned quickly. These special hydraulic machines are exceptionally effective at salvaging contaminated and soiled items. Even your child's Teddy Bear!

Air Movers

Along with extractors, these machines are the second key to removing water from the structure. We train our SERVPRO technicians extensively in the proper setup and arrangement of air movers to optimize drying time without damaging the saturated materials. Hardwood flooring can split and become trash if dried too quickly. Directional air currents whisk away moisture from surfaces and porous materials.

Dehumidifiers

The airborne moisture, known as water vapor, can then be captured and removed from the ambient air. The improved indoor air quality provides a safer and more comfortable environment. LGR and desiccant dehumidifiers are always available.

Moisture Detectors

Our technicians carefully examine your home with high-tech moisture detectors to find any pockets of lingering moisture. As a result, we can easily peer behind walls and under floors to find the fullest extent of water damage in the home. Moisture restoration of building elements and materials helps inhibit mold growth.

SERVPRO of West Loop / Bucktown / Greektown is always on-call and ready to help. (773) 434-9100.

Call A Specialist At The First Signs Of Mold Damage In Your Chicago Area Home

7/3/2022 (Permalink)

a mold damage wall with mold growing on the baseboards Finding mold does not need to be a paralyzing event. Contact our certified mold damage remediation team for effective services. We are standing by.

Signs Of Mold Damage

Mold often presents itself in areas of your home with constant water sources such as your kitchen, bathroom, or laundry room. Your shower, sinks, toilets, faucets, and any other plumbing or appliance that uses water can eventually lead to the development of mold.

Finding small amounts of mold damage in your Chicago area home may not be so alarming. However, if the area is over 10-square feet, you should contact a professional for help. Cleaning up mold without solving your water problem invites mold to return, and it only takes a short time for it to cover extensive areas of your home.

Expertly trained SERVPRO technicians provide you with access to advanced containment, control, and cleaning methods while wearing the proper protection to prevent inhalation of mold spores. They utilize a restore versus replace mentality to handle your belongings and discard any severely damaged materials, finding hidden mold, and keeping it from returning later.

SERVPRO technicians clean and disinfect the contaminated area using EPA-registered disinfectants and specialized equipment to reach even the smallest areas. You should understand that if you intend on tackling mold growth in your home alone, most household cleaning solutions just do not do the job well enough to combat the problem.

You can avoid many of the problems that often accompany mold growth in your home by contacting a trained professional for help. SERVPRO can help you remove mold from clothing, shoes, and other personal belongings, this includes leather items, books, paper and even electronics.

Making the right choices at the first signs of mold damage on your property can limit the losses you experience. When there are professional services available in your area, there is no reason for you to take chances on your own. Professionals are waiting to assist you anytime you need them, and you can benefit from what is available.

Contact SERVPRO of West Loop / Bucktown / Greektown for additional information or to schedule an initial inspection of your property, today. We can help you 24-hours a day, 7-days a week, call now (773) 434-9100.

Water Removal in Chicago Needs to be Done Quickly

7/3/2022 (Permalink)

a water damaged ceiling with watermarks on it Should you find excess water in any part of your home, contact our technicians. We have the expertise to mitigate the situation and are standing by.

SERVPRO Can Perform Water Removal in Your Chicago Home

When water damage occurs in your house, multiple issues may arise, ranging from dangerous structural problems to mold growth. To prevent the deterioration of your home, you need an effective and quick intervention.

SERVPRO is well-equipped with professional water extraction and drying equipment to perform water removal in your Chicago home to restore your peace of mind. After a water damage incident in your home, microbes can grow given proper conditions and enough time. If you do not mitigate a category one water situation for 2 to 3 days, microbes can amplify and increase contamination in the building. They can turn a category one situation into a category 2 or 3 situation. Acting fast helps prevent microbial contamination from worsening with passing time. The main steps in remediation or mitigation are: 

  • Eliminating moisture by minimizing humidity levels and drying the environment.
  • Removing contaminated materials. 

Our team is certified by the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC). Our SERVPRO technicians have undergone rigorous training in IICRC S500 standards and psychrometry, which is the drying science. This enables us to fashion the water removal situation according to the case and perform a thorough job. Our water removal process involves:

  • A thorough inspection
  • Extracting the standing water
  • Removing damaged items
  • Drying 
  • Disinfecting 

Our immediate course of action when we arrive at your house is to identify the source of the water intrusion and stop it completely. We can also assess your home to get a sense of the severity of the damage. The inspection also helps the SERVPRO team determine what items, materials, and structures have sustained severe damage and those within our ability to restore.

SERVPRO mostly follows these assessments with the extraction of standing water using pumps and removal of excess moisture using air movers and low grain refrigerant dehumidifiers. The equipment enables us to dry everything out. We can disinfect the house using antimicrobial agents.

Removing the water before the damage escalates goes a long way in ensuring your house returns to normal within the shortest time possible. Contact SERVPRO of West Loop / Bucktown / Greektown for help at (773) 434-9100. We’re Faster To Any Size Disaster.

When A Pipe Bursts In Your Chicago Home, Our Crew Is Here To Help!

7/3/2022 (Permalink)

a broken white pipe that is leaking water Dealing with a burst pipe can often be overwhelming. Team up with SERVPRO for effective water removal and drying services. We are standing by 24/7.

Why You Need Prompt Water Removal In Your Chicago Residence After A Pipe Bursts

Water expands when it freezes, and this is the reason why soda cans explode if placed in a freezer to chill fast and are forgotten. When water expands after freezing, pressure accumulates in the pipe, and it raptures, causing water to escape. A pipe can also rupture due to age or accidents and cause water to pool in your home, necessitating water removal.

Removing the water quickly can prevent additional damage. You should call a restoration firm like SERVPRO to assist you with water removal in your Chicago residence. Failing to remove water from your home can contribute to mold and mildew growth. Our skilled technicians have extensive training and expertise in water damage restoration and can monitor and document the entire drying process.

We use extraction equipment like wet/dry vacuums and pumps to extract standing water from a property efficiently. Our technicians can use portable extractors to remove water from restricted areas. We also use dehumidifiers to dry the affected areas. Dehumidifiers remove extra moisture from the air to dry out a home. We position dehumidifiers in a water-damaged structure strategically so humid, moist air can move to the unit while warm, dry air discharged from the machine circulates back into the damp areas.

SERVPRO technicians also use desiccants with gel to eliminate moisture from the air. Unlike dehumidifiers, desiccants do not collect water through condensation, but instead, use a ventilation system to vent moisture-laden air from inside a structure to the outside. Desiccants work on the principle of absorption. Silica gel absorbs and holds water vapor in the process. Energy then reactivates the silica gel, causing the desiccant to release moisture to the outside air. When a home is dry, we use deodorization and sanitizing agents to clear odors to enhance safety and comfort in a home. We can eliminate the water and moisture after a water leak to make your home appear “Like it never even happened.”

When in need of water removal services, SERVPRO of West Loop / Bucktown / Greektown is the right company to call. We have adequate resources for restoration jobs of any size. We serve several local communities, including Chicago, West Loop, and South Lawndale. Contact us at (773) 434-9100 and get the peace of mind you deserve.

SERVPRO's Annual Convention "Brand Partnership Panel"

6/23/2022 (Permalink)

head shots of presenters for the panel "Brand Partnership Panel" presentation by SERVPRO owner/operator and VP of Operations at the annual Convention--2022.

SERVPRO of West Loop / Bucktown / Greektown

The SERVPRO Industries LLC annual convention’s venue for 2022 is Dallas, TX. This much-anticipated event gathers more than 2000 individually owned and operated network franchises to showcase our successes and experiences in the cleanup and restoration industry.

The Brand Partnership Panel is a key component of the convention's goal of increasing the SERVPRO footprint. Frank Zubricki, owner/operator, and David Mason, VP of Operations for the SERVPRO of West Loop / Bucktown / Greektown, will provide insight for this panel. They will share successful experiences in expanding localized branding in three initiatives. It’s all about the branding.

PGA Tour & LPGA

Insurance agents and adjusters love to play a round of golf. We keep close relationships with local agencies both on the links and by providing non-credited franchise-offered classroom instructions. This association results in many COI leads. Frank claims that establishing insurance-driven claims enhances the revenue stream greatly.

The SERVPRO First Responder Bowl

Our sponsorship of this annual ESPN-owned college football bowl game puts our name in front of many viewers. We are proud to support all First Responders who put their lives on the line daily. We send brave men and women to the game as a statement of our commitment to helping our communities.

The First Responders Children's Foundation

We recognize the commitment and the benefits of supporting all families of the fire, police, EMS, and other First Responders. SERVPRO franchise owners participate in many worthwhile charitable programs to help these children. Especially, those who have lost a parent in the line of duty.

Frank and David have years of experience operating many SERVPRO franchises. Enhancing the brand in each market with timed events and programs for local communities and national regions makes good business sense. By partnering with outside agencies, we can make our mark.