Recent General Posts
Coming Up with a Family Emergency Plan
Coming Up with a Family Emergency Situation Plan
None of us like to think about emergencies that threaten our homes and loved ones. We’ve all seen pictures on the news and social media, and we know what it looks like. It’s terrifying and can leave us feeling helpless and paralyzed.
A good Family Emergency Plan can help everyone you care about feel a lot safer and in control, including yourself.
Assess the people who live with you. Do you have children or elderly people in your home? Do you have pets or livestock in your Waycross home? Make sure you think of these people and creatures when you are building your plan, as they are much more helpless than you and will need extra assistance.
Communication is of the utmost importance. Does every family member have access to a phone, both landline and cell phone? Make sure everyone understands how to use those phones, and that they have the access codes to unlock them should they need to use them in an emergency. Elderly people often don’t have the experience with more modern forms of communication; don’t assume that they know how a cell phone works or that they know how to text. Instead, go over the basics with them to ensure they will know what to do should the need arise. Everyone should know emergency numbers; memorizing “911” is something even the youngest person can do.
Be well informed; watch the news. You can get the news many different ways these days, so information about coming bad weather or wildfires, etc. should be readily available to everyone in the Waycross area. Make wise choices and think ahead. Don’t gamble with the weather; it’s much better to be safe than sorry. If emergency personnel come to your home or business and urge evacuation from the Georgia area, listen to them and follow their direction.
Make sure your family and loved ones are very clear in their understanding of your plan and that they understand that they need to follow that plan to the letter, so that everyone can be safe and covered during a water or fire emergency. Ensure that you talk to each person to see what they feel their capability level is. If they cannot move quickly on their own, assign someone to go to them immediately to assist them.
In case of a house-fire, have an escape route planned out, and if possible, more than one. Make sure windows are in working order and that each family member knows exactly what to do if there is a fire in the home. Teach everyone the fire safety rule “Stop, drop, and roll” - even the smallest children. You can make it into a game so that they memorize it and can use the process at a moment’s notice. Make a map of your home and memorize it so that you know exactly which window goes to which room, in case fire department personnel need to enter your home that way to conduct a rescue during the fire.
Research plans suggested by your local emergency crews such as fire and police, and use their suggestions and best practices to help your own family and loved ones be safe. It can be a matter of life and death.
Here at SERVPRO of Waycross, Hinesville & Douglas, we know water damage, fire damage, mold remediation, and all of your emergency service needs! If your home or office has received water damage of any kind, or any other such emergency, you can reach us at (912) 266-8609, or visit our website at http://www.SERVPROwaycrosshinesvilledouglas.com/
Surge Protector Safety Over the Holidays
Make sure you are careful with your surge protectors this winter!
According to the U.S. Fire Administration, there are about 250 fatalities every year during the holiday season that are attributed to electrical fires and hazards associated with Christmas trees and holiday lighting. What a tragic statistic! We don't want you or the ones you love to experience anything like that this holiday season, so please make sure you have surge protectors in your home and keep the following in mind to protect your family and property.
What Causes Electrical Surges?
Electrical surges occur more frequently than many people realize, but they are not always massive. Large surges can occur when lightning strikes or when electrical devices with powerful motors are suddenly turned on. They can also occur after a power outage when electricity is suddenly restored throughout your house.
These surges can cause fires, melt plastic, fuse metal and completely destroy delicate electrical equipment like computers, smartphones, and tablets. Small surges also take place when circuits are modestly overloaded with several electrical devices running simultaneously, as is often the case during the holidays when holiday lights are on and visitors are all charging their devices.
Purpose of a Surge Protector
Electricity can be a blessing and a curse for every homeowner. That amazing power that enables all your lights, appliances, and electronics to come to life can be unpredictable and dangerous when an electrical surge occurs.
Surge protectors are designed to detect surges in electricity and cut off the electrical current to prevent damage to your electrical devices such as televisions, computers, and kitchen appliances. Failure to have these safety devices installed can lead to burnt out electrical equipment and even fire damage. Don't take the risk – use surge protectors throughout your home.
Difference Between Surge Protectors and Power Strips
Many homeowners believe that they already have surge protectors in place and that their electronics and holiday lights are all safe and well. But that is often not the case. What many people have in their homes are power strips but not surge protectors. A power strip acts to increase the number of devices that can be powered by a single electrical wall outlet, but they cannot shut off the power flow when an electrical surge flares up.
Some power strips have surge protectors built into them, but many simply have an on/off switch but offer no real protection. To prevent fire damage and ensure your family's safety this holiday season, make sure that you have actual surge protectors installed and not just your basic power strips.
If your home has suffered fire damage and you are in need of professional cleaning services, please don't hesitate to contact SERVPRO of Waycross / Hinesville / Douglas. Our friendly and experienced professionals are happy to answer your questions and help with all your cleaning needs.
Energy-Saving Tips for the Winter Chill
Keep your bills down this winter with these energy saving tips!
The winter's chill is approaching fast, so now is the time to take precautions and lower electricity bills by creating an energy-efficient atmosphere. By making simple changes to everyday habits, your home will be toasty while frosty air remains outdoors.
- Ensure the thermostat, HVAC, fireplaces, and heaters are working properly. Clean or replace air filters, remove dust and dirt from the unit, get fresh wood and coal for the fireplace, and/or ensure buttons/switches are functioning. Repair broken parts or replace non-functioning heating systems. Follow manufacturer's instructions for proper use. Continue to clean/replace air filters monthly. For heaters and HVAC's, let it run before the first official use to remove carbon monoxide odors.
- Set the thermostat and heater at one temperature all season. A good temperature is 70 degrees. Alternatively, invest in a programmable unit.
- Insulate the home with weather stripping, plastic sheeting, and caulk. Wrap this around all entry doors, screen doors, and windows in the home and garage. Insulate the attic, basements, and crawl spaces too. This prevents air leaks from seeping in and keeping the home drafty and cold, even when heaters, fireplaces, thermostats, and HVAC are firing at maximum speed.
- Let the sunshine in on sunny days, particularly around the afternoon. The heat will warm the house to reduce dependence on heating items. Close the curtains after the sun goes down, however. An open window after sunset invites unwanted cold air in the home.
- During nightfall, reduce heater, fireplace, HVAC, and thermostat dependence and rely on comforters, sheets, blankets, and pajamas to warm you up. Turn off fireplaces, heaters, and HVAC's in unused rooms. Close the fireplace damper to conserve energy.
- Ceiling fans are a great way to stop heat from rising. Simply set the ceiling fan to turn clockwise on low speed. The warm air will circulate the rising heat down to the floor to reduce dependence on heating products. Continued use of ceiling fans means heat will travel to other occupied areas of the home.
A toasty home in the wintertime sounds wonderful. Turn this dream into reality through proactive measures like the information above. Let SERVPRO of Waycross / Hinesville / Douglas assist in proactive measures to avoid safety hazards this winter.
Indoor Plant Care and Odor Remedies
Create an urban oasis in your home!
When it comes to decorating the interior of your home, indoor plants are a fantastic way to liven up your living room. They can oftentimes bring a constant sweet smell to your household and create a relaxing aesthetic to the room. However, like any other home maintenance item, indoor plants require maintenance too. Oftentimes, odor removal becomes a major focus on indoor plants and can cause a stink if not taken care of. Fortunately, SERVPRO of Waycross / Hinesville / Douglas has a solution for you that will help keep your plant healthy and odor free in your household.
Indoor Plant Care
Indoor plants require sunlight to be healthy. One of the best things a homeowner can do for their indoor plant is to place it near a window for some direct sunlight. This will keep the plant healthy and vibrant in your room. Another important thing to remember is to not over water your indoor plants. Too much water can cause plant death, so be careful! Be sure not to spill coffee or tea into or around your plant’s base. The sugar can cause flies to attract, and this can be even more detrimental to your room.
Plant Odor Removal
Unfortunately, the odor can occur when the plant is not maintained properly. To ensure that your plant is odor free, here are some tips that can help.
- Always make sure that the indoor plant is the cause of the smell. It’s not good to jump to conclusions, especially if it’s not causing too much of an issue. Smell the base of the plant first to determine.
- As mentioned before, over-watering your plant can cause some issues for your plant. Not only can it kill the plant, but it can also sit at the bottom of the base and create a nasty smell.
- Check to see if there are any dead leaves or petals. They too can cause unpleasant smells if left unattended.
- Finally, make sure that you regularly replace the soil. Fungus and algae can build up over time and cause bad odor.
The benefits of having an indoor plant are many. Not only does it help with stress, but it also livens up your living room and creates a welcoming aesthetic. Make sure you to use these tips to help ensure your indoor plant is taken care of and odor free!
What Can SERVPRO Do For You, Waycross?
We love helping our neighbors in the community
As home or business owners, we never know when catastrophe can strike. Defective wiring could ignite a fire, an old tree could fall on your roof, or your house could be on the path of a powerful storm such as Hurricane Maria. The cleanup and recovery process after a disaster can be daunting. With SERVPRO of Waycross / Hinesville / Douglas, you can rest easy knowing professionals are on the job.
We are a reputable and trusted leader in the restoration industry. We love providing residential and commercial recovery and cleaning services to our neighbors. If you are dealing with water damage, fire damage, storm damage, or mold - call us!
What sets SERVPRO of Waycross / Hinesville / Douglas apart from the rest? Well, there are various aspects that put us on the competitive edge. Being a locally-owned and operated company means that we respond to any size disaster faster. We also provide 24-hour emergency service, meaning that we are always there whenever our customers need us.
Our ability to provide a wide variety of restoration and recovery services is something that we pride ourselves in. This helps us provide viable solutions to all our customers, including homeowners, business owners, construction workers, building managers and those in need of help with disaster cleanup. There’s no task too small or too big for us to handle.
How are we able to help so many in our community? Advanced restoration and cleaning equipment, and the availability of a highly trained workforce! SERVPRO of Waycross / Hinesville / Douglas makes use of state-of-the-art equipment to ensure that tasks are completed quickly and effectively.
Our technicians will make sure that your water damaged, fire-damaged or mold-infested property is restored. In addition to that, they are trustworthy, dutiful, and they adhere to all industry standards.
At SERVPRO of Waycross / Hinesville / Douglas, it’s always a great honor and privilege to serve our local communities, from Jesup and Blackshear to Baxley and Walthoursville, from Ludowici to Patterson, and all the way to Midway. As a proud member of the Waycross, GA community, we strive to make our community the very best it can be.
Is Your HVAC Unit Ready for Autumn?
Having your air ducts cleaned by a professional can help prepare your HVAC system for cooler weather.
The autumn months are just ahead. Your HVAC system has been working hard all summer. Is it ready for the cooler months ahead? Here are five things you need to do to get your HVAC system ready for autumn.
Change your air filters. Your HVAC system needs a clean flow of air to run efficiently. When your air filters are clogged, that air is not flowing freely and your energy costs are going up. Plus, it puts more wear and tear on the system, driving up repair costs and shortening its life. Once a month, change your air filters to prevent problems.
Clean the outside unit. You should remove any dust and debris from the unit. The accumulation can decrease the efficiency of the unit. Remove twigs, branches and leaves from inside and around the unit. A quick hose down will remove any pollen or dust. It is also a good time to inspect the unit for any damage. This is something you need to do in the spring also to keep the system running year round.
Get your heating and cooling system checked. At least once a year, you should have your heating and cooling system checked by a professional. Routine maintenance will keep the system running smoothly. While doing the maintenance, the technician may also find minor issues that are easily fixed. Catching small problems early will prevent them from becoming major later on. And that can end up costing you a lot more.
Clean your air ducts. The inside of your home's air ducts is likely coated with pollen, dust, dirt, debris and odors. To keep your home's air clean this winter, get a professional to come out and do an air duct cleaning. It is not something you need to do every year, but definitely something to do every couple of years.
Program your thermostat. Autumn can bring some wild weather patterns, with some days hot and some days cool. Make adjustments to your thermostat's programming to handle these fluctuations. If you don't already have a programmable thermostat, getting one this fall is a great idea. It will save you money while keeping your home more comfortable.
Taking a few minutes to get your HVAC ready for autumn will give you the warmth you need as the cool winter winds set in. For help with air duct cleaning, call on the professionals here at SERVPRO of Waycross / Hinesville / Douglas.
Emergency Preparedness Month
Is your family prepared?
Being prepared for an emergency can save your life and the lives of those you love. To encourage people to be ready for a disaster, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) sponsors Emergency Preparedness Month every September. This year's theme is "Disasters Don't Plan Ahead. You Can."
FEMA selected September because it corresponds to the 9/11 attacks and it sits in the middle of the Atlantic hurricane season. The ultimate goal of Emergency Preparedness Month is to increase the number of individuals, families, and communities who actively prepare to handle disasters at home, at work, in school and in places of worship.
As demonstrated by history and present news, disasters can be man-made and natural. The fortunate thing is preparation for both is the same. It starts with getting a plan together, then gathering supplies, and finally practicing what happens if a disaster occurs.
Getting a Plan Together
Preparation begins with a plan. How will you and your family survive if a disaster occurs? Your plan needs to outline what you would do in different scenarios: fire, flood, gas leak, terrorist attack, etc. You also need to make a list of what items you would need to survive for a few days like food, water, medical supplies, pet supplies, etc.
Other things to consider would be:
How would you communicate with each other if you were separated?
Where would you meet?
Who would help disabled family members?
Gathering Supplies and Getting Prepared
Once you have a plan in place, the next step is gathering supplies. Every family should have enough supplies to get through at least 3 days. That includes food, water, pet supplies, and medicine. The food should require minimal preparation and be easy to eat.
Keep some cash available for emergencies. ATMs and credit card machines may be down due to the disaster.
Gather and store items for easy access during a disaster. These items can include personal, household and medical information.
This is a step often overlooked but critical. Your family should practice what would happen if a disaster occurs. What would you do if the house is on fire? Where will you meet if you cannot get into the neighborhood after school or work? How should you pack the car if you need to evacuate?
Preparation makes all the difference in responding to a disaster. Make sure you put the phone number of SERVPRO of Waycross / Hinesville / Douglas on your list of emergency contacts. We can help restore your home after a fire, flood, or other damage.
Prevent Window Frost
Prevent Window Frost