Recent Posts

Be Prepared: Locate Your Water Shut Off Valve

2/4/2021 (Permalink)

Shut Off Tags Be Prepared BEFORE Disaster Strikes!!

Water gushing uncontrollably through your house or business is hazardous, unsafe, and will quickly cause major flood damage. If that water is coming from your home's own water supply, and not from outside sources, you can and should shut it down very fast. NOW is the time to locate your Water Shut Off Valve. Once found, make this known to all family members as they may be home alone when disaster strikes! Our office offers FREE Shut Off Tags that you can place as a reminder to all. The quicker the water supply is shut off the less damage to your home or business.

Three Ways to Quickly Locate the Water Shut Off Valve

Find the Water Shut Off Valve on the Inside Perimeter

The first step is to physically search for your house's main water shut off valve on the inside of the home. Typically, it will be located on the perimeter of the house since that is where the water first enters your house. Also, stay on the side of the house that is facing the street. Your water main begins at the street and heads in a straight line to your home. When you find the valve, turn the handle or knife-style valve.

Find the Shut Off Valve on Your Property Inspection Report

If you still cannot find the cut off valve after physically searching for it, one alternative is to check the property inspection report that was completed for you when you were in the final phases of purchasing your home. Look in the plumbing section of the report. This section should locate the shut-off valve for you and have a photo of the valve. Even if the water system was not defective at the time of the property inspection report, the report should still note the locate the shut-off valve as a matter of course.

Find the StreetSide Shut Off Valve

If the previous methods fail, there is another valve located at the beginning of your water main, at the boundary line of your property and the street or sidewalk. Find the ground-level metal or plastic utility box trap door located at ground level. Call the water company's 24-hour emergency contact line. Staff may direct you to shut off the valve by yourself or to wait for an emergency dispatch team. 

Call our office at 314-279-5600 or email us at office@sevprokirkwood.com to request your FREE Shut Off Tag!!! #SERVPROOVERLANDCOOLVALLEY

Team of over 1700 franchises nationwide

9/29/2020 (Permalink)

Vehicles parked at shopping center Commercial Water Damage

Size is not always an indicator of strength; but when you are a restoration company with the resources of over 1,700 franchises- size matters.

At SERVPRO of Overland/Cool Valley we are equipped to handle a loss of any size. But the question always comes into play, what happens when there are multiple losses.

Typically, we see this scenario play out during natural disasters or major storms. The benefit that we have at SERVPRO of Overland/Cool Valley is not only do we have the capacity to produce any size loss; but we can combine our strength with a large network of other SERVPROs nationwide that can provide assistance and extra equipment.

At SERVPRO of Overland/Cool Valley not only do you get the local franchise, but you also get the strength of one of the nation’s largest restoration company. In the last few years, we have been fortunate to have the network of SERVPRO’s to provide us more equipment and PPE during nationwide shortages.

If you have experienced fire or water damage, we are always here to help! Call us 314-279-5600 so we can address your damages quickly.

Smoke and Soot Damage

8/5/2020 (Permalink)

Soot filled bathroom Fire Damage in St. Ann, MO

Smoke and soot from a fire is very invasive and can penetrate various cavities within your home or business causing hidden damage and odor. SERVPRO of Overland/Cool Valley’s smoke damage expertise and experience allows us to inspect and accurately assess the extent of the damage to develop a comprehensive plan of action.  

Smoke and soot facts:

Hot smoke migrates to cooler areas and upper levels of a structure

Smoke flows around plumbing systems, seeping through the holes used by pipes to go from floor to floor

The type of smoke may greatly affect the restoration process

Different Types of Smoke

There are two different types of smoke–wet and dry. As a result, there are different types of soot residue after a fire. Before restoration begins, SERVPRO of Overland/Cool Valley will test the soot to determine which type of smoke damage occurred. The cleaning procedures will then be based on the information identified during pretesting. Here is some additional information:

Wet Smoke – Plastic and Rubber

Low heat, smoldering, pungent odor, sticky, smeary. Smoke webs are more difficult to clean

Dry Smoke – Paper and Wood

Fast burning, high temperatures, heat rises therefore smoke rises

Protein Fire Residue – Produced by evaporation of material rather than from a fire

Virtually invisible, discolors paints and varnishes, extreme pungent odor

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.  The professionals at SERVPRO of Overland/Cool Valley have the equipment, expertise, and experience to restore your fire and smoke damage.  We will also treat your family with empathy and respect and your property with care.

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage? Call SERVPRO of Overland/Cool Valley – 314-279-5600

EPA Compliance Advisory on Product Claims

6/25/2020 (Permalink)

The U.S. EPA recently issued a Compliance Advisory titled “What You Need to Know Regarding Products Making Claims to Kill the Coronavirus Causing COVID-19”. 

The purpose of the Compliance Advisory is to address concerns related to products being used to disinfect surfaces which include claims to kill and/or be effective against SARS-CoV-2, the
coronavirus causing the disease COVID-19. For some of these products, those claims have not been reviewed or accepted by EPA and, therefore, may present a risk to consumers, and healthcare
providers in particular.

The EPA uses the following very strong language that is helpful in advising our clients and
customers regarding the increasing number of new age products and methods that are being pitched with dubious efficacy and other claims in connection with COVID-19, and challenging the use of those questionable products and methods in the marketplace:

It is unlawful for any person to distribute or sell a pesticide in the United States making claims
to that it will kill a particular pathogen, unless that pesticide is registered with EPA and that
particular claim has been deemed acceptable by the agency. The EPA is receiving a steady stream of tips/complaints concerning potentially false or misleading claims, including efficacy claims,
associated with pesticides and devices. These tips/complaints are being actively reviewed and
efforts are being made to identify potentially violative products. The EPA intends to pursue
enforcement against products making false and misleading claims regarding coronavirus. The EPA is working with e-commerce platforms to remove/prohibit these fraudulent and/or otherwise inefficacious products from the marketplace. The EPA is also coordinating with the U.S. Department of Justice and other federal partners to bring the full force of the law against those selling or otherwise distributing violative products.

SERVPRO of Overland/Cool Valley consistently uses only SERVPRO approved cleaning and disinfecting products and methodologies to help combat the COVID-19 crisis. We are always here to help. 314-279-5600

Fire Safety Education

5/28/2020 (Permalink)

You may know what to do during a fire, but do your children? SERVPRO of Overland/Cool Valley has faced countless losses in homes and businesses due to fire damage so we want families to be prepared. It is important to make sure your children are educated on fire safety. You never want to leave your children home alone without the proper fire safety education and since you can't predict a fire emergency, fire safety education is key. Here are some important items to remember: 

Make sure that you educate your children on what a smoke alarm looks and sounds like. Make sure they can recognize when a fire alarm has gone off and what to do when an alarm has sound. Know two or more routes to exit your home during a fire as well as a meeting point away from the location a safe distance from the fire. The American Red Cross suggests "Practice your fire escape plan at least twice a year and at different times of the day. Practice waking up to smoke alarms, low crawling, and meeting outside." It is crucial your children also know how to dial 9-1-1. 

When making sure your home is up to fire safety standards, make sure to have escape ladders on the upper levels so that you can escape from windows to safety. The American Red Cross also suggests "use quick-release devices on barred windows and doors. Security bars without release devices can trap you in a deadly fire. If you have security bars on your windows, be sure one window in each sleeping room has a release device." It is important to make your children aware of which windows have quick releases on them and how to use them properly. Also have fire extinguishers readily available, and up-to-date and, at minimum, in the kitchen, garage and on the upper levels. 

It is never too soon to start teaching your children how to be prepared during an emergency, including fires, as they often occur in the home. SERVPRO of Overland/Cool Valley is open 24/7 in case a disaster strikes. We are dedicated to helping restore your residence to pre-disaster conditions, making it “Like it never even happened.” 314-279-5600

Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned program

5/26/2020 (Permalink)

Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned Program Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned Program

Let us help you get back to business

As our communities re-open, we are all moving back toward a new kind of normal. The expectations of visitors, customers, and employees who come into our establishments have evolved, and staying safe and well is a top concern. The global COVID-19 pandemic has changed what it means to be clean, and we have developed a program to help your business meet the new higher standard of clean that is now expected.

Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned is a defensive cleaning program we are offering to businesses and commercial locations to address the current COVID-19 pandemic. This proactive viral pathogen cleaning program goes well beyond janitorial or carpet cleaning. By choosing Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned, you, your employees, your customers, and your community can rest assured that you have selected a higher cleaning standard – you are Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned.

Extensive training and specialized products

As the #1 choice in cleanup and restoration*, we stand on more than 50 years of experience and expertise to help your business become Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned.  Beyond fire & water, SERVPRO professionals are trained and experienced in biohazard decontamination and chemical spills – always adhering to the cleaning and decontamination standards set by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and local authorities. 

From formulating and creating our proprietary cleaning products, like SERVPROXIDE, at our headquarters in Gallatin, TN, to taking the utmost care while disinfecting, we will ensure you and your business are set up to inspire consumer confidence as the economy continues to reopen.

3 C’s – Consult, Clean, and Certify

When the stakes are this high, you want a partner who has developed an industry leading, proprietary training program, cleaning solutions, and remediation processes over decades. We have cleaned up some of the most challenging biohazards imaginable. Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned reflects our unique experiences and capabilities. The program is grounded with our unique 3 C’s: Consult, Clean, and Certify.

  • Consult – Every business is different, which is why you will be assigned a Cleaning Protocol Consultant who understands your business and will create a cleaning program to meet your specific needs. This program will be developed based on your business type, size of space, amount of high frequency touchpoints, foot traffic and congestion points.
  • Clean – Based on your specific business needs, your location will undergo a thorough, deep clean, using exclusive cleaning products, according to protocols set forth by the CDC. Our employees have years of experience, and we will go beyond the scope of work that regular janitorial staff perform. Cleanup procedures generally include cleaning of porous and non-porous surfaces, disinfecting of non-porous surfaces, cleaning and disinfecting of equipment, tools, and/or supplies used for cleanup process, and disposal of hazardous materials.  In the event of a suspected or confirmed COVID-19 event, we will be there cleaning within 24 hours to ensure you get back to business as quickly as possible. 
  • Certify - Once your business location has been Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned, you will gain access to proprietary signage, digital emblems, and other collateral that communicates that you’ve selected a higher standard of clean available to help protect your employees and customers. And because we add the day, month, and year to that proprietary stamp of clean, your guests will know that not only did you choose Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned, but that your location is being cleaned regularly at this standard.We are Here to Help – 24 hours a day, seven days a week – until life is back to normal in the communities, we all call home. 
  • Call SERVPRO of Overland/Cool Valley today at 314-279-5600 for your Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned consultation.
  • Call today for a Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned consultation

What's Safe to Flush or Drain?

5/12/2020 (Permalink)

What’s Safe to Flush or Drain?

Disposing of the wrong items in a toilet or drain can cause blockages and slow drainage, flooding, and hazardous sewage back-ups into your home or yard. Fixing them can require costly and disruptive repairs for you and contributes to sewer rate increases for the whole community. Don’t let your hard-earned money go down the drain. Follow these guidelines at home and work.

The sewer pipes that serve the toilet, shower, bath, sinks, washing machine, and floor drains in your home or business are designed to carry only three things: human body waste, toilet paper, and wastewater. When other items are put down the drain, they can combine to cause clogs, put additional stress on the pipes, or get caught up in our wastewater treatment facilities. This material then needs to be trucked to a landfill, causing extra work and expense, and higher rates for customers.

Don't Flush or Drain (Just to name a few!)

  • Bones
  • Bread Dough
  • Butter
  • Coffee Grounds
  • Eggshells
  • Gravy
  • Paper Towels
  • Rubber Bands
  • Tampons
  • Wet Wipes

 DO

  • Place a wastebasket in your bathroom for disposing non-flushable items.
  • Place liquid cooking fats, oil and grease into a container with a lid and dispose of in trash.
  • Wipe down greasy pots, pans and dishes before washing.
  • Have your sewer rodded or snaked regularly.
  • Dispose of old medicines or drugs at an approved drug take-back site or event.
  • Dispose of motor oil, paint, grease or other dangerous fluids at the St. Louis Household Hazardous Waste collection facility. 

If your home or business sustains a backup we are here to help 24/7/365 days!!! Call SERVPRO of Overland/Cool Valley 314-279-5600

Sewer Lines

5/7/2020 (Permalink)

 

A Guide to Your Private Sewer Line

What is a lateral line?

The lateral line connects your home or building to the public sewer system. Wastewater from your sinks, showers, toilets, dishwashers and washing machines flows through the lateral line to the public sewer system.

Who is responsible for maintaining and repairing the lateral line?

The lateral line, including connection, is private property. It is the property owners’ responsibility to maintain and repair the lateral line.

It’s important to keep the lateral line clear of obstructions and in good repair. This will greatly reduce the risk of blockages, clogs and water backups.

What causes lateral lines to become blocked or obstructed?

Lateral lines can be blocked or obstructed by items flushed down the toilet or washed down the drain, as well as tree roots, grease, and other obstructions.

How do I know if my lateral line is blocked or damaged?

Some signs that your lateral is blocked or damaged include slow draining, water pooling around the basement floor drains, sewage smell inside or outside the building, wastewater leaking from cleanouts, and wet ground in your yard.

Will insurance cover repairs to the lateral line?

Most homeowners’/business owners’ insurance policies do not cover damages caused by a problem with the lateral line. You should verify coverage with your insurance agent.

Many area municipalities offer lateral line insurance for their residents. This insurance helps offset the cost of repairing lateral lines. Please verify all information by contacting your municipality.

How do I get the lateral line repaired?

If you do not qualify for a municipal lateral line insurance program, then you should contact a licensed professional plumber.

How do I maintain the lateral line?

• Have the lateral line inspected and cleaned annually by a licensed plumber.

• Do not plant trees or large shrubs near the lateral line. Roots can enter the lateral line and cause a blockage. If roots enter your lateral line, call a license plumber to clear the line.

• Do not pour grease down the sink. When grease cools, it can build up in the lateral line and cause a blockage.

• Do not flush diapers, feminine hygiene products or other non toilet paper materials down the toilet. These items can block the lateral line.

• In some areas, downspouts are connected to the lateral line. Debris from the roof can wash into the gutters and eventually reach the lateral line. Keep gutters clean to keep debris from blocking the lateral line.

• Repair or replace damaged lateral lines as soon as possible.

If your home or business experiences water damage we are always here to help at SERVPRO of Overland/Cool Valley 314-279-5600.

Xtreme Heat

5/6/2020 (Permalink)

As summer approaches, it is time to consider safety precautions for extreme heat in the coming months. Heat affects all people, but especially the young, elderly, sick and overweight. According to the EPA, "the sun can heat dry, exposed urban surfaces, such as roofs and pavement, to temperatures 50-90 degree hotter than the air, while shaded or moist surfaces-often in more rural surroundings-remain close to air temperatures."

If you must go outside, wear loose-fitting, light-colored clothing, and be sure to apply sunscreen often. Pay attention to signs of heat exhaustion, which are heavy sweating; weakness; cold, pale and clammy skin; nausea or vomiting; and fainting according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Heat exhaustion can lead to heat stroke, which is life-threatening. Signs of heat stroke are a high body temperature (103+), rapid and strong pulse, and possible unconsciousness. If you think someone has heat stroke, call 911 immediately and move the person somewhere cool.

Extreme heat is a serious danger. For more information on preparation and prevention, visit ready.gov or cdc.gov.

Air Movement in Drying

5/6/2020 (Permalink)

Two aspects of air movement influence evaporation of moisture from materials.

  • Velocity- The speed of the air moving across surfaces.
  • Volume- The quantity or amount of air moving during a period of time.

Velocity is a multiplier in the evaporation process, multiplying the rate that evaporation occurs. The velocity of airflow is comparable to wind speed. Higher wind speed will result in higher evaporation rates. Likewise, the faster the velocity of air moving over a wet surface, the better the rate of evaporation will be. Velocity is measured in feet per second (FPS), feet per minute (FPM), or miles per hour (MPH), and can be determined using an anemometer.

Volume is critical to the circulation of air. Airflow used for drying must have high wind speed, but that wind must be dry air. The source of dry air usually is a mechanical dehumidifier, though it could be the outdoor environment. Regardless of source, the dry air must be distributed or circulated throughout the affected area, much like the heated or cooled air from a home air handling system must be distributed throughout.

Moving air from one location to another is a product of mass, or volume, and is usually expressed in Cubic feet per Minute (CFM). We measure air movers in terms of CFM to indicate how much air the air mover is able to move around.

Restorers can better control air movement when they understand the roles of air volume and air velocity. Volume is not velocity. Adequate velocity is critical for increasing the rate of evaporation. Adequate volume is important when trying to circulate wet, dry air throughout especially large and complex structures.

SERVPRO of Overland/Cool Valley professionals are here to help with all your drying needs.