How We Support Our First Responders
Just a few of the ways that SERVPRO supports First Responders
Although SERVPRO® gets credit for helping people get their life back and making it "Like it never even happened" after a disaster, we must appreciate and thank our first responders for making our job much easier. Law enforcement officials, emergency medical technicians, and firefighters run head-first into danger every day to keep people in our community safe. Simply put, because of what they do, we are able to do what we do. Because of this, SERVPRO makes it a priority to give back whenever we can to those who gave us so much, both on a local and national level.
Our franchise has a few ways that we give back to first responders in our area. Most recently, we are collaborating with our local hockey team the Peoria Rivermen to introduce and acknowledge 12 First Responders with a SERVPRO First Responder Recognition Award. First Responders who made a difference in their community can be nominated by their peers or loved ones to get recognized in front of the crowd at a home game. It’s a small gesture but can mean a lot to those brave men and women who normally don’t get thanked for the work that they do.
We also add value to our local fire departments through giving them unique training opportunities. In addition to helping regular live burn training by furnishing burn cells, we travel to local fire departments with a Palmer Fire Training Doll Houses to support them with extra training (and a well-deserved supper on us from Mission BBQ). These specially designed “dollhouses” are a great way to demonstrate a fire’s behavior during a house fire and how to manipulate the flow path through opening and closing the doors in the doll house.
SERVPRO recognizes first responders on a national level through our continued support for the First Responders Children’s Foundation and hosting the SERVPRO First Responder Bowl, which shares stories of first responders on a national stage and gives back to first responder organizations across the country. Both of these initiatives have helped out countless families who have lost loved ones in the line of duty, and we are proud to be a part of them. Starting this year, SERVPRO is also the national sponsor of Firefighter Challenge League. A grueling obstacle course specially designed for firefighters to challenge firefighters in a competition against other departments.
First responders do so much for us and the communities we serve, so we’re happy to show our appreciation any way that we can. If you want to help us support our local heroes, please consider donating to the First Responders Children’s Foundation, nominating someone for the SERVPRO First Responder Recognition Award, or just reaching out and saying thank you. Your appreciation and support can make a big difference!
What It Takes to Clean Contents
We have the equipment to clean just about anything
When people talk about restoration, the conversation usually revolves around the damage to the building itself. In the promotion efforts from a restoration company, you will see hundreds of before and after photos of water damaged floors, smoke damaged cabinets, and the occasional mold remediation job, clearly showing where the damaged property has been restored to its former glory. This describes a reasonable picture for someone interested in property restoration, but there’s one thing that most people don’t think about until they find themselves in the unfortunate situation of needing restoration work done: contents. What exactly happens to your belongings (clothing, shoes, linens, pillows, sofas etc.) when it needs to be restored?
Contents Assessment and Storage
The contents in a damaged area might be able to be restored depending on condition and type of damage. We use our expertise and the guidance of your insurance adjuster to determine which contents can be salvaged and which ones need to be replaced. Because we do all our own contents processing, SERVPRO Team Fletcher will work diligently with you and your insurance provider to address any concerns you might have. Communication is key, and if your restoration company is outsourcing their contents processing to another company, you will lose that direct contact and trust that comes with working with a company like SERVPRO.
Cleaning—Procedures and Equipment
Using industry-standard equipment is just a starting point at SERVPRO Team Fletcher. We go above and beyond to make sure our customers’ contents are being treated with the upmost care. For example, we have invested in an Esporta machine at our location which drastically increases cleaning degree as well the type of soft contents we can clean after a fire or flood. This computer-controlled machine knows exactly what cleaners and processes are needed to return the type of content in it to its original condition or better. Other specialized equipment we have on-site includes ultrasound machines and a dedicated ozone room to remove lingering smells such as smoke from clothes and furniture. We also have dedicated “fine detail” cleaning stations, plus a vast collection of specially formulated proprietary cleaners and deodorizers developed by SERVPRO chemists to be the best at what they are intended to do. We make sure to stay up-to-date with the latest developments in contents restoration procedures to ensure your valuable belongings are guaranteed to be in the best care possible.
Final Customer Walk-Through
Of course, only you are the expert when it comes to your own stuff, so we invite you to come to our facilities and inspect your belongings before it’s decided they are ready to transport it back to your home. If anything doesn’t meet your standards, we may then try to clean it again or work with your insurance to replace it. After everything has been approved, we will move everything back to where it belongs so you can return to your life, “Like it never even happened.”
Getting your life back on track after a disaster can be a complicated process, but at SERVPRO Team Fletcher we aim to make it as seamless as possible for you. If you have any questions about contents cleaning, don’t hesitate to reach out to us any time at (309) 346-5600.
A Guide to Staying Dry Through The Winter
Winter water damage can get costly--be prepared!
After the hot and humid summer we survived this year, there’s no better feeling than opening up your windows and feeling the fresh air throughout your home. But this feeling won’t last too long as we look towards another freezing winter ahead, and with winter comes more extreme weather and more opportunities for moisture to enter your home. So with that being said, we think it’s never too early to start protecting your home from winter water damage. Here are some things for you to check so you can be sure you’re fully prepared for the upcoming winter:
Give melted snow a path to drain
Your roof and gutters might have handled normal rains in the summer with ease, but it’s always a good idea to check on them before the winter weather rolls in. Make sure your gutters are clean, structurally sound, and drain to appropriate channels that move the melted snow away from your house.
Stop ice dams in their tracks
What are ice dams? Ice dams are buildups of snow and ice that can prevent water from draining properly on a roof. Because of this, pools of water accumulate on your roof which can lead to messy roof leaks. Typically, they form on roofs of houses that have uneven heating. This can occur because of issues with insulation or windows and walls that are not sealed properly. Make sure your house is properly sealed and insulated if you want to prevent ice dams from forming.
Don’t let pipes freeze on you
One of the most common causes of water damage in the winter is from broken or burst pipes due to freezing. You should make sure that all pipes are protected from the outside elements by using insulation, and when the outside air reaches extremely freezing temperatures, always keep a trickle of water run from the faucet. This can help you prevent a costly pipe repair and flooding of your home.
Pack up your outdoor hoses
If you leave your hose screwed into the spigot, there’s a good chance that there’s some water sitting in both the hose and spigot, which can cause damage to them and even the pipe leading to it. It’s best to unscrew the hose and put it in storage for the winter until you need it again.
As long as you take steps to protect your home from moisture today, you’ll have a lot less to worry about when winter strikes in central Illinois. If you have any questions about winter water damage, please call us at (309) 346-5600.
What NOT to do After a Fire
By reducing secondary fire damage, you can minimize cleanup time and costs
There are a lot of things that we’re told we should do when experiencing a fire in our home: exit the building safely, get low to the ground if there’s smoke, and call 911 as soon as you get out. But after the fire has been put out and the smoke clears, most people don’t understand the dangers that may still be present on the premises. When you eventually return to your home to try to put your life back together, follow these tips to make sure you and your property are safe from any additional damages.
Don’t turn on any electronics until advised to do so by a professional
If any of your electrical wiring was damaged by the fire, it could be extremely dangerous to try to turn anything on. Wait until a professional has reported no damage before you touch or operate anything connected.
Don’t attempt to wash any walls or painted surfaces
While you think you might be getting a head start on cleaning up soot from a fire, you will most likely be only spreading it around and staining your painted surfaces further. Leave these surfaces to the professionals to get the job done right!
Don’t use any fans in an area where soot is present
If you move the air around soot, the soot is going to move as well. To minimize the amount of affected contents and areas, don’t turn on any fans unless advised to do so. Ceiling fans can pose an additional risk if the wiring is wet, so it’s best to not touch them.
Don’t shampoo carpet or upholstered furniture
Professionals know which specialty products and procedures should be used depending on the material. It’s always best to wait for a restoration technician to restore these items to their original condition.
Don’t consume any food or beverages that may have been stored close to the fire
Increased temperatures and chemicals in the smoke have the potential to contaminate any consumables that have been near the fire. Be on the safe side and discard any food or beverages that were around during the fire.
If you recently had a fire and still have questions about what you should do about your home or belongings, you can always call us at (309) 346-5600 and a professional will be happy to give you expert advice.
Work at SERVPRO®!
Two Restoration Technicians on a job
Have you ever wondered what it’s like to work at SERVPRO®? You might have seen our trucks on their way to jobs or our techs moving equipment and thought to yourself: “maybe I would also look good in green (and make some green, too)!” Well, the good news is that green looks great on most people, and the training and opportunities for growth help those who work at SERVPRO be proud to wear the color. Disastrous weather seems all too common nowadays and households are turning to restoration companies more frequently every year. To keep up with the increasing demands of the industry, our team is constantly looking for individuals who have what it takes to be part of one of the top performing companies in restoration.
Trained to Be the Best
SERVPRO values education and requires its franchises to train well and train often. But we at SERVPRO Team Fletcher like to go a bit further with this philosophy and give our employees an even more robust training experience. In addition to hosting IICRC classes at our campus year-round, we have the only IICRC-certified flood house in the state of Illinois and a smoke house for fire demonstrations. With these opportunities available in-house, our employees are always just around the corner from taking their next step in their development journey in the restoration industry.
Help People Get Their Life Back
Although our training program and other benefits are the hook for most employees at SERVPRO, there’s something that keeps people working with us. When our techs are going out to help a customer, they are making a difference in that person’s life for the better. Helping people during one of the most difficult times in their life is a truly humbling experience that most people don’t have the opportunity to be a part of. We hire people who love to help others in their time of need and encourage them to spread their kindness to anyone on any job, no matter how small.
Work With the Best
It’s easy to see why the restoration industry is one of the best industries to start a career in, but why choose SERVPRO over other companies? It’s impossible to overstate the dedication to education that goes beyond the minimum that other companies settle for. We also boast one of the most robust national restoration systems in the country, with more than 2200 franchises established and still counting. SERVPRO knows what it takes to grow, and that includes a similar vision of growth for every franchise employee out there.
If you want to be part of this amazing team, check out our Careers Page to see if there’s a position that’s right for you. We hope to see you soon as the newest member of Team Fletcher!
What Can An ERP Do For You?
Call us today to learn more about our ERP!
SERVPRO is all about preparedness. We prepare ourselves to always be ready at a moment’s notice whenever disaster strikes to provide swift assistance across the whole country, and we want to help other businesses prepare themselves for the same. One way we can help is providing them with an Emergency Ready Profile, or ERP. The ERP is basically a file that has all the information a building operator needs at their fingertips in the event of a disaster.
Did you know that as many as 50% of businesses close after experiencing a major loss? We have found that those who were able to act on an already established preparedness plan have a better chance of reopening after a loss, so SERVPRO decided to provide the ERP as a free service to help those businesses recover and stay open. Although some businesses might already have a contingency plan in place, an ERP guarantees that all the information that they need access to is in one place, plus some other benefits that they might not have thought about. But what are those benefits?
A map of every key shut-off in the building
No one wants to be in the middle of dealing with a major leak only to realize they don’t know the first place to look for the main shut-off. Having this information readily available is key to getting a head start at mitigating any damage. We will provide a floorplan showing exactly where each shut-off is so anyone with access can easily find those shut-offs at a moment’s notice.
A full map of the facilities
In addition to gathering the important information needed to respond to a loss, we offer a full 3D map of the building to go along with the ERP. Since SERVPRO creates a 3D map of every loss we work on for our quoting software, we can use the map we make for the ERP as a “before” reference for our project managers to work from. Additionally, the map can be used for more than just emergency preparation, and again, is completely free!
Special instructions and notes
Getting started on the mitigation process as early as possible is key to getting a business back on their feet, but that doesn’t mean that we need to skip over the important details and requests a business might have. Notes about where to park and which entryways to use can be put in the ERP and any SERVPRO franchise can review the info at any time.
Peace of mind
Knowing that a plan is in place and ready to be acted on, even if it never has to be used, is a huge intangible benefit to getting an ERP. When the details are already agreed upon and the ERP is easily accessible to anyone who might need it, no one needs to lose sleep imagining the worst happening to their building. Having a reference of what to do and who to call that anyone on the team can access will save countless hours of playing phone tag that could be spent on starting the mitigation process.
If you have any questions or want to set up an ERP for your building, let us know! Give us a call at (309) 346-5600 and we’d be happy to tell you more.
Our Top Tips for Avoiding Water Damage on Summer Vacation
SERVPRO Team Fletcher is here with some tips to keep you safe during the Summer!
It’s Summer Break! Now that the kids are out of school and the summer sun is shining, many households are planning their summertime getaways. While you might be planning to be away from your home the responsibilities and risks of being a homeowner never go on vacation.
Large storms or unaddressed leaks—even minor ones—bring unwanted water into your home that can lead to property damage. Believe it or not, many homes experience water damage just due to neglecting a few key things while away on vacation.
Here are some tips to give you peace of mind so you can fully relax:
Test your sump pump before leaving
If you have a sump pump installed in your home, making sure it is working properly can turn a disastrous situation into a non-issue. You can try unplugging the sump pump and plugging it back in, and if you hear it kick on, chances are your sump pump is in working order. Another way you can test it is to pour a five-gallon bucket of water into the sump pit. If it doesn’t turn on after that, have someone come by to repair it before you leave.
Make sure you don’t leave behind any leaks
A small leak can seem like a small issue if you’re there to keep up with it, but things can go south quickly if they get any worse while you’re away. Double-check your roof, pipes, and connectors to appliances to make sure everything is sealed properly. Repair any leaks you find immediately.
Shut off your water supply
Turning off your water main or water supply can be a good idea for homeowners who won’t need the water while away from the home. A leaky pipe can’t leak if there’s no water passing through!
Have someone come by to check on things
The sooner you catch water damaging your property, the easier the mitigation and restoration process will be. So have a person you trust come by to check your property and they can report anything out of the ordinary. It can make a huge difference!
What is a Large Loss Response Team?
One requirement for becoming a Large Loss Response Team: having lots and lots of equipment on hand!
At the end of last year, our franchise celebrated an exciting new distinction—we earned and was awarded the title of a Large Loss Response Team! To commemorate this, we invited our family, friends and business associates from the community to our facilities in Pekin to share our success, tour our campus, and learn a little more about our journey to reaching this rare milestone. This was a great opportunity to thank those that helped us get here and share a vision of where we’re headed, including a reveal of the new branding for our Large Loss Response Team name: Team Fletcher. For those of you who don’t know what a Large Loss Response Team is, you might be wondering what all this fuss is about. Let us help explain!
A Large Loss Response Team, or LLRT, is a franchise that meets all 28 of the requirements to be pre-qualified to work on Large Losses for the Commercial Large Loss Division. This establishes us as part of a special nation-wide team ready to pick up the call for any size disaster anywhere in the country and even supervise the whole process of the Large Loss. While this does mean that we’ll be taking on more responsibility as a franchise, it also means future commercial clients gain the peace of mind knowing our team has the equipment, resources, and skill level to take on even the largest jobs. Being designated to handle restoration work for large commercial buildings doesn’t mean that we’re shifting our focus away from the work that got us here—all jobs of any size will be able to reap the benefits from this distinction because of our increased capacity for work.
We’d like to say thank you to everyone who helped us earn this distinction, especially our past customers. We wouldn’t have been able to get here without the support and kind words you’ve given our franchise throughout the years.
If there’s ever a disaster that leads to a Large Loss in the area, you can count on Team Fletcher!
Trained to Be the Best
Our IICRC-Certified Flood House at our campus in Pekin, IL
Here at SERVPRO Team Fletcher, we have adopted a new mantra for our whole team to rally behind: Trained to Be the Best. Every SERVPRO franchise technician goes through extensive training including IICRC certification for water damage drying and restoration, fire damage restoration, mold remediation and more, and we’re proud to be part of a system that values employee education so much. In addition to all this required training, we have even more opportunities for our techs to learn and grow.
Did you know that we have the only IICRC-certified flood house in the state of Illinois? Each time we host an Applied Structural Drying class, the students get the opportunity to flood and then dry a fully furnished house on our campus. Getting hands-on training in this kind of environment is crucial because it means we don’t have to do the training in someone else’s property.
We go through this training because we want to make sure every job we do is held to the same high standards, that we’re all on the same page using the current industry-standard processes and equipment to do the best we possibly can. It’s our goal to be the best trained restoration company in central Illinois, and we hope our commitment to training gives you peace of mind if you ever have to deal with any sort of disaster.
SERVPRO One Team
SERVPRO has the right vehicle for every job!
Here at SERVPRO of Peoria we take on the one team mindset in our own operation and as a brand. SERVPRO rallies around other franchises, both neighboring and around the country. This allows SERVPRO to be able to handle al losses, no matter the size or the location. Not only do we take care of our customers like they are family, but we all support other franchises like family as well.
When your family is in a time of need, you can trust SERVPRO of Peoria to get your home or business back to pre loss condition! Our teams are available 24/7/365 for emergency services including fire, water, mold, etc.