Recent Posts

Commercial HVAC Cleaning Services in Philadelphia

3/1/2021 (Permalink)

A commercial air condition unit on top of a metal roof. Commercial HVAC Cleaning in Philadelphia.

At SERVPRO of Society Hill, we provide regular HVAC cleanings for many Philadelphia condominium associations and apartment complexes.

What are the benefits of regular HVAC cleanings?

Cost-effectiveness. A dirty HVAC system has to work harder to maintain the desired temperature. Although filters are used, the heating and cooling system still gets dirty through normal use. When the system is clean, it doesn’t have to work as hard. As a result, less energy is used. This leads  to improved cost-effectiveness. Regular cleanings will also help lengthen the overall lifespan of your system.

Improved air-quality. Humans naturally generate a great deal of contaminants and air pollutants in our living spaces, including dander, dust, and chemicals. These contaminants are pulled into the HVAC system and re-circulated. Over time, this re-circulation causes a build-up in the ductwork. Over time, this could cause serious problems for people with respiratory health conditions, autoimmune disorders or some environmental allergies. Regular cleaning will ensure the best air quality for building inhabitants. 

To learn more about our commercial HVAC cleaning services, give us a call today at 215-772-1203!

Commercial Water Damage- 7 Floors

2/23/2021 (Permalink)

Servpro employee in black hoodie places green fan. Crew member places a fan to help dry out a soaked unit.

Our crew recently tackled a large water damage at a high-rise apartment building in Center City, Philadelphia. A water heater burst on the 14th floor, soaking the entire unit and raining down on 7 floors beneath it. Ceilings, walls and floors were saturated and in need of extraction and repair.

With water still pouring down, our project manager acted quickly to prevent further damage.  He first laid plastic over tenant belongings to protect them from moisture. Then, he got straight to work extracting water and placing fans.

Within a few days, the damaged units were completely dried and prepared for repairs. Emergency response prevented further damage from occurring!

House Fires Peak in Winter

12/21/2020 (Permalink)

Side-by-side images depicting a fire damaged home before and after cleaning and repair. At SERVPRO of Society Hill, we specialize in cleanup & repair of fire damages.

According to the National Fire Protection Association, more home fires occur during Winter than any other season of the year. As the leading experts in fire, smoke and soot damage, we come across many fire-related property damages during Winter months. Let’s discuss the leading causes of house fires and how they can be avoided.

Cooking is the leading cause of fires year-round. Most cooking is done indoors throughout the colder months. Thus, the likelihood of a kitchen fire increases during Winter. Remember to never leave the kitchen unattended while cooking, especially when using hot appliances. Keep paper products, towels, potholders and other flammable materials away from the stove and avoid grease buildup by cleaning your stove often.

Heating is the second-leading cause of home fires. Space heaters are responsible for a large portion of Winter fires. Keep space heaters at least three feet away from flammable items. Never plug a space heater into an extension cord or power strip. 

Many of us use candles to decorate our home in Winter. Be mindful of the placement of your candles. The majority of house fires started by candles occur when a combustible material is left too close to the open flame. Remember to keep candles at least three feet away from anything that might catch fire. It is unwise to leave a candle unattended. Be sure to extinguish lit candles before going to sleep.

The majority of dryer fires start because homeowners fail to clean the dryer. Buildup of lint and other materials cause fires because the unit cannot release heat properly. That heat buildup becomes the fuel to a very dangerous fire. To prevent a dryer fire, clean out lint filters each time you use your dryer. You should also have your dryer vent and ductwork professionally cleaned once a year- services we provide at SERVPRO of Society Hill.

Electrical lighting is another common cause of house fires. As you decorate your home with lights, be mindful of manufacturer instructions. Avoid overloading your outlet and/or power strip. There is a limit to how many strands of string lights can be connected safely. Replace any string strands with frayed wires or a worn appearance. Most importantly, turn off Christmas lights before leaving the house or going to bed.

Whether you prefer a real or artificial Christmas tree, both can pose a fire risk. Real trees tend to be at a higher risk of catching flame because of their needles becoming dry. However, artificial trees result in more severe flames with dangerous chemicals and smoke. As with other combustibles, keep your tree three feet away from any heat sources like radiators, fireplaces, heat vents, etc. Make sure your tree isn’t blocking an exit out of the home, like a hallway or door. For more tips, read our article about christmas tree safety here: https://www.SERVPROsocietyhill.com/holiday-tree-safety

Prevention is key to keeping a fire-safe home. Now would be a good time to practice your fire escape plan with your family! If your home is damaged by fire, smoke or soot this Winter, call SERVPRO of Society Hill for immediate cleanup and restoration.

Holiday Tree Safety- Avoid a Fire Damage!

12/9/2020 (Permalink)

A Christmas tree erupts into flames. Avoid a fire damage in your home by following Christmas tree safety guidelines.

Flickering lights and winter greens are hallmarks of the holiday season. Unfortunately, a beautiful Christmas tree can become a fire hazard if not maintained properly. Follow these simple tips to avoid a fire damage and ensure a happy and safe holiday season! 

First and foremost, start with a quality tree. When purchasing an artificial tree, consider selecting one labelled “Fire Resistant”. If you prefer a live tree, pick one with fresh, green needles that do not fall off when touched. Make sure the base is cut at a 45 degree angle before placing it in water.

Keep your live tree hydrated! Dry Christmas trees are dangerously combustible. A small fire that spreads to a dry tree will grow very quickly. The average tree can use as much as one gallon of water per day, so make a point to check the water level daily. Not only will this keep your tree safe, it will also help maintain its plump and full appearance.

Find the perfect spot for your tree. According to the National Fire Protection Association, more than two of every five decoration fires occur because decorations are placed too close to a heat source. One-third of home decoration fires are started by candles. Keep your tree at least three feet away from any heat source, like fireplaces, radiators, candles and heat vents. Make sure the tree is not blocking an exit.

Inspect light strands before use. Those with worn, frayed wire or loose connections are unsafe and should be discarded. Purchase lights with safety labels and follow manufacturer instructions on how many strands to connect. Don’t leave your lit tree unattended, always turn off lights before leaving home or going to sleep.

Winter months are the leading time of year for home fires. Avoid a devastating fire in your home by practicing fire safety year-round. Make sure your home has working smoke alarms. Test them once a month and replace the batteries yearly.

When the holiday season comes to a close, discard your live tree promptly. Many communities offer Christmas tree recycling. Check with your local recycling center for drop-off locations. These centers will often chip and shred your tree for use as mulch or soft bedding for parks and playgrounds in your community.

At SERVPRO of Society Hill, we have years of experience cleaning and repairing residential fire and smoke damage. If your home is impacted by fire this season, call the experts you can trust at 1-800-SERVPRO.

The Certified Mitigation and Restoration Professionals

12/4/2020 (Permalink)

SERVPRO employees in black short sleeve shirts scrub a ceiling. SERVPRO crew members adhere to cleaning industry standards.

When your property is damaged, turn to the company you can trust. With over 50 years of collective expertise, SERVPRO professionals are highly trained and experienced in mitigation and restoration. We’ve developed the most extensive performance guidelines in the industry. 

SERVPRO franchise owners must agree to 21 guidelines in order to receive insurance client referrals from 1-800-SERVPRO. These include insurance requirements and employee background checks. Each requirement is continually maintained to ensure clients are connected with the best possible service providers.

At SERVPRO of Society Hill, regular training and certification requirements keep our staff up to date on industry standards, ensuring we deliver the quality you expect. We are professionally certified through the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC). The IICRC is responsible for setting standards for the cleaning and restoration industry. Franchise professionals and insurance clients are encouraged to continue their education in classes at SERVPRO’S IICRC-approved training facility.

Consistent training is the best way to ensure our customers receive the service they deserve. That’s why our technicians keep their skills sharp through regular completion of e-learning training programs. Certification is awarded after successful course completion and an examination. Modules include: Crew Training, Fire Restoration, Water Restoration, Carpet & Upholstery Cleaning.

SERVPRO of Society Hill is committed to upholding the industry standards that have made SERVPRO a household name nationally. That’s why we emphasize strict adherence to IICRC standards, as well as cleaning and decontamination standards set by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and local authorities.

How to Prepare Your Home for a Winter Storm

11/18/2020 (Permalink)

There’s nothing quite like a blizzard warning to send homeowners into panic mode. To avoid fear and frenzy, start preparing your home for severe weather conditions in the Fall. Follow these five tips and you’ll have peace of mind once a winter storm comes our way:

Trim back trees. Heavy snow can cause branches to snap and come crashing down on your home. Avoid a compromised roof by tending to your trees. Remove weak branches and those situated close enough to break a window in high winds. (If a branch cracks your window, weatherseal tape will provide a temporary seal.) Consider hiring a professional company to cut back limbs and remove sick or dying trees.

Protect your pipes. Frozen pipe bursts are one of the leading causes of property damage during winter months. To avoid a costly damage, protect your pipes from freezing conditions. Inspect pipes for visible damage such as rust or cracks and have them replaced if necessary. Protect exposed plumbing using foam pipe insulation. This cost-effective solution will guard against freezing air. You can promote warm air circulation to exterior areas of your home by leaving interior doors and cabinet’s open. Visit our blog article “Prevent Frozen Pipe Bursts” for more tips.

Use alternative sources of heat and power safely. If you plan on utilizing alternative heat sources during a power outage, it is important to have a carbon monoxide and smoke detector in your home. Combustible heat sources produce CO, which has no smell. It can cause drowsiness, loss of consciousness and death. All fuel-burning equipment must be used outside and kept away from windows. Avoid using a chimney if it has not been regularly cleaned, as this may present a fire risk.

Prepare for melting. After the storm subsides, rising temperatures quickly turn snow to water. This may put your home at risk for flooding. Elevate critical utilities, furniture and belongings to avoid potential damage. In the event of a power outage, a sump pump will be unable to drain floodwater. Consider keeping a battery-operated sump pump on standby.

Make a plan. While certain precautions may lower your risk of encountering unsafe conditions, not all emergencies are preventable. If your home is significantly damaged by winter weather, do not attempt to ride out the storm. Instead, seek a public designated shelter. To locate the nearest shelter, text “SHELTER” and your zip code to 43362, which is FEMA’s dedicated text line.

If your home is damaged by a storm, SERVPRO of Society Hill is available 24/7 to help. We provide emergency roof tarping and board ups to prevent further damage. Our professional restoration team has the tools and expertise to repair your home. We strive to make storm damage “Like it never even happened.”

Prevent Frozen Pipe Bursts

11/13/2020 (Permalink)

Winter weather is rapidly approaching here in Philadelphia. As temperatures drop, the risk of frozen pipes surges. In fact, frozen pipe bursts are a common cause of property damage during winter months. These damages can cost several thousands to repair. Fortunately, there are a few simple steps you can take to lower the risk of a frozen pipe burst in your home.

Before temperatures fall, identify which of your pipes may be at risk. Those in unheated interior spaces such as basements, attics and garages are most likely to freeze. But subzero temperatures can also freeze pipes running through cabinets or exterior walls. Inspect these pipes closely for visible damage such as rust, cracks or leaks. Even slight damage raises the risk of a burst exponentially.

Once cold weather sets in, follow these steps:

Promote warm air circulation around your plumbing. Keep garage doors closed. Leave kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors open. This is especially important if your sinks are located on an exterior wall.

Insulate water line pipes. Adequate insulation in attics, basements and crawl spaces will maintain warmth and slow the onset of freezing temperatures. Prevent drafts by sealing cracks around windows and doors.

Think ahead. If you plan to be away during cold weather, set the heat in your home to no lower than 55 degrees. This is especially important if forecasts predict sustained temperatures below 20 degrees.

Thawing frozen pipes:

If you suspect a pipe has frozen, take caution. If the pipe has cracked or burst, water will come flowing out and flood your home once it has thawed. Turn off your water at the main shutoff valve.

If the water is still running and no pipes have burst, take the following steps:

Turn on the faucet. Running water through the pipe, as cold as it may be, will help to melt ice in the pipe.

Carefully apply heat to the pipe. Wrap an electric heating pad or towels soaked in hot water around the pipe. Introduce warm air using a hair dryer or portable space heater, but keep these as devices far away from water and flammable materials. Never use an open flame to heat frozen pipes, as this may damage them or even start a fire.

If you are unable to locate or access the frozen pipe, call a licensed plumber.

In the event one of your pipes has frozen and burst, contact SERVPRO of Society Hill. We provide 24/7 emergency response. Our expert employees can swiftly repair the damage and restore your home.

How to safely heat your home this winter!

11/3/2020 (Permalink)

With Winter fast approaching, you already know cold temperatures are right around the corner. This means you will be heating your living spaces.  Which increases the chances of possibly starting a fire. Two of the most common sources of these fires are space heaters, and fireplaces. SERVPRO of Society Hill would like to provide you with some safety precautions to take this winter when using either one of these sources of heat. 

Space Heaters
In an effort to help cut energy costs or to accommodate roommates many people use space heaters during the winter months. They are an excellent way to warm up cold rooms or provide extra heat. Space heaters can also be hazardous if not used properly. Never leave a space heater unattended especially when children and pets are around, and don’t place it near drapes, shades or bedding.  Always keep them out of high traffic areas, and doorways.  This will lower the risk of a tripping accident. If your heater is more than a few years old, replace it with a new model that has more current safety features such as tip-over protection. This way it shuts off automatically if it happens to fall over.  Never use an extension cord to plug in a space heater.  Always plug directly into an outlet on the wall.  While space heaters come in very handy they can also pose serious risks.  So follow these tips to stay warm safely!

Fireplaces
Winter is a notorious time for house fires and it is vital to have working fire alarms around the house to alert everyone, but one of the main culprits is faulty fireplaces. The best way to prevent a disaster is having a professional properly inspect it. If your flue or chimney are blocked by debris or contain cracks or leaks, inadequate venting can occur, and toxic fumes may seep into your home. An inspection lets you know that everything is in safe working order.  You should also have your fireplace and chimney cleaned before your first use every year. Always make sure your fireplace is out and cooled before going to bed, and just like the space heaters never leave the fire unattended. 

SERVPRO Society Hill wants everyone to take the right steps to prevent house fires from happening.  So if you take all these precautions and steps this winter you will be safe and warm in the comfort of your home!

Providing Commercial Buildings With A Reliable Resource

10/26/2020 (Permalink)

One of SERVPRO of Society Hill's major focus points is the large commercial buildings in the city of Philadelphia. Seeing that these buildings can be so large, you never know when, where, or how a damage may occur.  That's why our Marketing Representatives are always looking to build new solid relationship's with Property Managers, and Chief Engineers of these properties. This way we can provide them with a direct contact for when disaster strikes.  Just having that person to reach out to 24/7 can save a lot of time, stress, and money.  Every minute you waste trying to search for the right company to call the more likely the damage gets worse.  That's why the whole SERVPRO of Society Hill team is ready to respond.  From the first call, to the crew being shipped out, to a full cleanup for any damage that has occurred.  We know commercial buildings take a lot of work to manage, and maintain.  Knowing that you have someone to call from SERVPRO of Society Hill when the time comes makes your job a lot easier!

Important Steps To Follow When Dealing With an Active Fire!

10/14/2020 (Permalink)

Here at SERVPRO of Society Hill we care about you and your families well being. In the terrible case that you have to deal with an active fire here are some safety tips to get you and your family to safety as fast as possible!

  • Always have an escape plan/route mapped out that everyone in your family knows if a fire should ever occur.
  • Crawl low under any smoke to your exit - heavy smoke and poisonous gases collect first along the ceiling.
  • Before opening a door, feel the doorknob and door. If either is hot, or if there is smoke coming around the door, leave the door closed and use your second way out.
  • If you open a door, open it slowly. Be ready to shut it quickly if heavy smoke or fire is present.
  • If you can’t get to someone needing assistance, leave the home and call 9-1-1 or the fire department. Tell the emergency operator where the person is located.
  • If pets are trapped inside your home, tell firefighters right away.
  • If you can’t get out, close the door and cover vents and cracks around doors with cloth or tape to keep smoke out.  Call 9-1-1 or your fire department. Say where you are and signal for help at the window with a light-colored cloth or a flashlight.
  • If your clothes catch fire, stop, drop, and roll – stop immediately, drop to the ground, and cover your face with your hands.  Roll over and over or back and forth until the fire is out.  If you or someone else cannot stop, drop, and roll, smother the flames with a blanket or towel.  Use cool water to treat the burn immediately for 3 to 5 minutes.  Cover with a clean, dry cloth.  Get medical help right away by calling 9-1-1 or the fire department.

Following these steps will greatly increase your chances of getting to safety quickly and no harm.  SERVPRO of Society Hill is available 24/7, and ready to help with the aftermath of a fire!