Recent Posts

How Can SERVPRO Help Me With My Cascade Insurance Claim?

10/5/2021 (Permalink)

Filing an insurance claim after a disaster can be frustrating and confusing, even if the damage you experienced is small. There are many different rules to follow, forms to fill out, and timelines to follow. Mistakes in any one of these areas could cause the denial of your claim, and we know that's not something you want to experience. 

Our SERVPRO team is here to help you file your insurance claim for your Cascade home or business. We have experience in all the areas necessary to ensure that your claim is filed correctly and on time. 

What Are The Steps I Need To Take When Filing An Insurance Claim For My Cascade Property?

According to FEMA, insurance is generally the best source of funds to recover from a disaster. If you have insurance covering all or part of your losses:

  • File your claim immediately. Get the process started as quickly as possible. The faster you file your insurance claim, the quicker you can move ahead with your recovery. If your insurance doesn't cover all your disaster-related severe expenses, you may be eligible for FEMA assistance to help fill the gap.
  • You can make temporary repairs, but you will want to talk with a professional restoration company before doing so. 
  • Take photographs or videos of the damage and keep all receipts related to clearing smoke, home repair, or other disaster-related needs.
  • If you have to relocate during repairs, keep all receipts for reimbursement, as well.
  • You may be eligible for FEMA assistance, and you can learn more here:

How Can SERVPRO Assist Me In Filing My Cascade Insurance Claim?

  • We can be on-site right away to begin assessing the damage and making recommendations for recovery.
  • We help determine unsafe conditions and structural issues.
  • We work with your insurance representative to start the restoration process according to your policy.  
  • SERVPRO will work alongside you to go over all the forms needed when completing your claim, help to ensure everything is filled out completely and submitted on time. 

It's our job to help you recover from any disaster, and that includes managing the insurance claim process. We will make sure you are reimbursed fully according to your policy so that you can get back to normal right away.

SERVPRO of South and Northwest Grand Rapids can handle disasters of all kinds, including storm damage, fire damage, and much more! Visit our website to find out more about all the ways we can help you manage a disaster in your Cascade home or business. 

We can get your home or business Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned, too. Ask us how!

This franchise is Independently Owned and Operated. 

What Is The Proper Way To Use A Fire Extinguisher?

9/21/2021 (Permalink)

You may never have used a fire extinguisher before, and it can be a little daunting even to consider. When it comes to fire safety, it’s better to be safe than sorry, however! The time to learn how to handle a fire extinguisher is when there is no emergency, giving you time to think about what you are doing and practice the steps. Being proactive by learning this critical skill in advance of a fire emergency is one smart way to guard the safety of your Byron Center home or business.

Below you will find the steps to follow for the proper use of a fire extinguisher, as well as some further information to help you:

What Are The Correct Steps To Take When Using My Fire Extinguisher To Protect My Byron Center Property?

The P.A.S.S. method is the most highly recommended method to use when handling a fire extinguisher:

  • Pull the pin on the extinguisher.
  • Aim the hose nozzle low toward the base of the fire.
  • Squeeze the handle to release the extinguishing agent.
  • Sweep the nozzle from side to side at the base of the flames until extinguished.

What More Do I Need To Know About Handling A Fire At My Byron Center Property?

Knowing how to operate the extinguisher is not all you need to understand. Responders to fire also should be able to adhere to the following protocol:

  • Sound the fire alarm or call the fire department immediately.
  • Before approaching the fire, determine an evacuation route away from flames, excessive heat, and smoke, and keep this evacuation route from being blocked.
  • Use the P.A.S.S. technique for discharging an extinguisher and back away from the area if the fire flares up again.
  • If the extinguisher is empty and the fire is not out, evacuate immediately.
  • If the fire grows beyond what you can handle safely, evacuate immediately.

According to O.S.H.A., the most common emergency small businesses need to plan for is fire. O.S.H.A. requires employers to thoroughly train workers on an annual basis at minimum how to use an extinguisher properly and assess a situation accurately to determine when evacuation is the safest course of action. 

You can find more fire extinguisher information here.

When it comes to damage from fire, water, or any other disaster of any size  SERVPRO of South and Northwest Grand Rapids is here to help! In addition to fire damage, we handle many other kinds of issues, such as mold remediation and commercial cleaning.

We can get your home or business Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned!

This franchise is Independently Owned and Operated

What Are The Top Three Places To Check For Water Damage In My Caledonia Home?

9/17/2021 (Permalink)

Conducting regular inspections of areas in your Caledonia, Michigan home or business most likely to experience water damage will allow you to take care of issues before they become serious. Some spaces are more likely to be affected than others, of course, so these are the places you need to direct your focus. Water damage can occur with little-to-no warning, creating damp conditions that are just right for a mold colony, and leaving you with an unsafe and unhealthy environment. 

Which Areas Are Most Prone To Water Damage In My Caledonia Home? 

The bathroom. Most bathrooms get cleaned thoroughly at least once a week, and this is the perfect time to check for leaks and damp areas. Look in the least-traveled spots, such as corners of the linen closet, behind the toilet, under the sink. If you find leaks, they will need to be fully dried out and the water source determined so that repairs can be made. You can invest in a dehumidifier, which will be very helpful in reducing humidity. 

The kitchen. This area of the home is used more than any other area in homes. Watch for spills and leaks and clean them up immediately to ensure that wet conditions are not attracting mold spores, which are always in our air. Under the sink or refrigerator you may find areas damaged by water without you noticing, so get out your flashlight to be sure you can see every corner.

The laundry room. An unnoticed leak behind the washing machine can create huge issues over time. Pull the washer and dryer out from the wall regularly, and make sure the areas behind them are clean, dry, and disinfected. 

Other areas you may want to inspect regularly for water damage: hall closets, garage, and basement. 

What Other Water Damage-Related Services Does SERVPRO of South and Northwest Grand Rapids Offer? 

Other related issues may evolve from a water damage episode, such as structural deterioration, mold infestation, unhealthy conditions, or unpleasant odors. In addition to water damage restoration, our company also help manage such related services as:

SERVPRO of South and Northwest Grand Rapids is always here to help you with any issues related to water damage in your Caledonia home or business. Large-scale cleanups after storm damage and fire damage are our specialties, and we are commercial restoration experts, too. 

We can get your home or business Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned, as well. This franchise is independently owned and operated.

What Are Some Smart Ways To Storm-proof My Ada Garage?

9/17/2021 (Permalink)

It is crucial to storm-proof your garage. If the garage is left unprotected, it is much more likely that there will be expensive damages even in your Ada, Michigan home itself. According to, "failure of the garage door ... leaves a breach in the house envelope that can be as big as 300 square feet. Experts conclude that the resulting change in pressure can blow the roof off a house or create other tears and fissures in the home that allow rains and water to invade and damage or ruin drywall."

How Can I Best Protect My Home By Storm-proofing My Ada Garage?

  • Maintain Garage Door.

It is important to consistently inspect your garage door for holes and cracks and seal them when they are found. Install a bracing system to the door. Braces anchor the door to the floor, walls, and hinges, adding support and wind resistance. When it’s time to replace the garage door, look into purchasing a wind-resistant door. Install a garage door with a high wind-resistance rating. Storms that bring with them extreme levels of wind will cause the most damage, and when a garage is breached the winds will batter the rest of your home.

  • Storm-proof Windows.

You can remove windows in the garage if you are concerned about heavy storms, but that may not always be an option. If you have any windows in your garage, you want to make sure the glass is impact-resistant. Installing outside window protection that can be locked and protected from impact and storm remnants is another way to provide storm protection for your garage and home.

  • Provide Drainage.

Install a trench drain around your garage and down the sides of your driveway to divert water. Flood vents inside the garage can drain any water coming inside quickly before levels rise and cause water damage or mold growth down the line, preventing the need for mold removal.

How Can SERVPRO of South and Northwest Grand Rapids Help Me Recover From Storm Damage To My Home in Ada, MI?

If your home has experienced storm damage, we are here to help. The SERVPRO of South and Northwest Grand Rapids has the skills, training, and equipment needed to restore your property from all the destruction such an event can bring. You can count on us to handle such water damage issues as:

We can get your home or business Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned, too. This franchise is independently owned and operated.

How Can Water Damage Be Prevented During Construction In Grand Rapids?

9/6/2021 (Permalink)

During your Comstock Park commercial property construction, its foundation, and base structures are exposed to elements, including wind, rain, heat, and cold. These weather conditions can cause water damage during construction if no steps are taken to prevent moisture from finding its way through unsecured building openings like windows, doors, and more. This, in turn, may lead to mold growth, which is dangerous for your health and safety, can negatively affect the integrity of the building. Proper water damage prevention can quickly help avoid this type of situation. 

What Are Some Ways To Avoid Water Damage On My Comstock Park Construction Project?

We have established that prevention is the best way to avoid water damage. Take such steps as: 

  • Monitor For Water Leaks. Most pressurized potable fire and water systems can have monitoring devices attached, enabling their mains to be monitored for any signs of water leakage. You can set up these devices to signal you by an alarm, alerting you when a leak is detected and allowing you to catch leaks early so remediation can occur immediately. 
  • Regular Maintenance. Another part of prevention is to maintain items at risk carefully. You can inspect all pipes and related equipment regularly to catch issues before they start. As soon as a weak or damaged piece of equipment is identified, be sure to take steps to repair or replace it. 

What Are Other Ways To Ensure Water Damage To My Grand Rapids Construction Project Does Not Occur?

Everyone on the site needs to be experienced and qualified so that unnecessary accidents don't happen. 

  • Employ Qualified Contractors. Any contractors you are working with are fully qualified to complete the construction components they are responsible for safely and professionally.
  • QA/QC. Having a Quality Assurance/Quality Control Plan in place is key to preventing water damage during construction; planning is the best way to prevent damage from happening. This plan will help you know what to do if a natural disaster or severe weather is heading your way. A QA/QC plan will include:
    • Planned evacuation routes
    • A plan for leading water away from your construction project
    • An assessment of water infiltration susceptibility enabling you to account for vulnerabilities

SERVPRO of South and Northwest Grand Rapids is here to help when the worst happens. From water damage to commercial restoration, we have the skill and equipment to get you back to work as soon as possible. 

We can get your home or business Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned.

This franchise is Independently Owned and Operated. 

What Are The Benefits Of Having Commercial Storm Damage Insurance For My Grand Rapids Business?

8/27/2021 (Permalink)

When a severe weather system hits the Grand Rapids area, local businesses may experience damage and devastation. According to the NOAA National Centers For Environmental Information, storm damage to companies can be significant. Storm insurance is a vital part of keeping any enterprise safe from the often devastating costs associated with storms. A business owner may not have the available cash to pay for expensive restoration and reconstruction projects, so this type of insurance policy will be an important part of any smart business strategy. 

How Can A Storm Damage Insurance Policy Help My Grand Rapids Business Recover?

Two of the most important areas in which a storm damage insurance policy can help you get back to normal after damage from bad weather are:

Property Loss. Such insurance coverage will usually handle payment to replace or restore lost valuables and possessions - also referred to as property loss. Heavy rainfall and flooding may have ruined items essential to what you do. A storm damage policy for your business can ensure that you receive the correct compensation that will allow you to replace the items and get back to business.  

The following are typically listed as covered items:

  • Electronics
  • Technology
  • Fixtures
  • Documents
  • Furniture
  • Inventory

Structural Damage. The most significant expense is often from the repair of the facility itself. Storm insurance will provide funding for the remediation and restoration of the business structure, with the owner usually paying a deductible amount upfront. The insurer then provides payment for the balance; maximums may apply here, so you will want to check with your insurance representative. 

What Are Some Other Advantages Of Purchasing Storm Damage Insurance Coverage For My Grand Rapids Business?

Best Coverage. Private insurance options can give you better coverage than a government policy, such as FEMA. Private storm insurance policies can be stand-alone, meaning they provide your primary or base flood insurance. Or they can be 'excess', which means they provide additional coverage on top of a base policy, such as a FEMA policy.

Peace Of Mind. Storm insurance is a business owner's safety net, giving financial support during hard times, as well as the peace of mind that comes with knowing your enterprise is safe, no matter what comes.

The restoration team here at SERVPRO of South and Northwest Grand Rapids is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to assist you if the worst happens. In addition to storm damage and commercial restoration, we handle fire damage, mold remediation, and more. 

We can get your home or business Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned, too. Ask us how!

This franchise is Independently Owned and Operated. 

How Do I Inspect My Water Heater In Grand Rapids?

8/10/2021 (Permalink)

No one likes going without hot water, especially when it happens unexpectedly. Your water heater can stop working with little notice, leaving you with an uncomfortable situation!

One of the best ways to avoid this kind of experience is to inspect your water heater regularly. This practice will help you stay on top of any maintenance issues and make replacements or repairs ahead of time, allowing you to avoid leaks, drips, and water damage.  

What Should I Look For When I Inspect My Water Heater?

  • Find the age of your unit by looking for the serial number on the manufacturer sticker on the upper portion of the water heater. Each manufacturer has a similar date code, and they can vary, so check the manufacturer's website to date your machine. If your water heater is more than ten years old, you may want to consider replacing it, especially if its location means a leak will cause you water damage.  
  • If you see rusty water coming from the hot side piping in your home, this is a sign that your water heater is rusting away on the inside and may begin to leak soon. Test first to see if it is coming from galvanized pipes, if you have those, by draining a few buckets of hot water from the water heater. If the water gradually clears, it isn't your water heater. 
  • Sediment will build up at the bottom of your water heater tank over time. As the sediment is heated and reheated, it eventually will harden and cause rumbling noises to develop; that is another sign that your water heater needs to be replaced soon to avoid water damage from leaks.  
  • If you notice moisture around your water heater, you may have a small leak or a fracture in the tank. 

What Do I Do If I Find An Issue During The Inspection Of My Grand Rapids Water Heater?

If you are concerned about the failure of your water heater or if you discover any signs of trouble:

  • Try not to panic
  • Make sure you know exactly where the leak originates
  • Turn off the water to your water heater unit
  • Drain the tank if you are confident you can do this safely:
    • Open some of your hot water taps around the house, preferably those located on floor levels above the heater
    • Locate the drain valve near the bottom of your water heater
    • Attach a garden hose to the drain valve and run the hose to a place it can drain safely, like a floor drain or your driveway
    • Open the drain valve and let the water start flowing. Generally, this step takes 10 minutes or less
    • Once the tank is empty, disconnect the hose and close both the drain valve and the hot water taps you opened in the first step
  • Call a plumber
  • Call your restoration specialist if you have experienced water damage

We are always ready to help you if water damage occurs in your home or business. Our SERVPRO of South and Northwest Grand Rapids technicians are highly trained and skilled in all types of restoration and cleanup projects, including mold remediation - which is often an unfortunate and unpleasant side-effect of water leaks. 

We can get your home or business Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned, as well. Ask us how!

This franchise is Independently Owned and Operated. 

How Do SERVPRO Technicians Make All The Difference

7/27/2021 (Permalink)

Having our SERVPRO of South and Northwest Grand Rapids technicians onsite when the worst happens can make all the difference. They are a team of professional, dedicated, and highly skilled people who are committed to helping you manage disasters of any size. They are ready 24 hours a day, seven days a week if the worst happens, and their primary goal is always to get you back to normal as soon as possible. 

What Types Of Training Do SERVPRO Of South And Northwest Grand Rapids Technicians Maintain? 

Since 1967, SERVPRO Industries, Inc. has been redefining the mitigation and restoration industries. In addition to training at the regional level, SERVPRO developed the National Training Center in 1992 to teach restoration and mitigation skills to Franchise Owners and insurance industry employees. Our technicians receive and maintain ongoing training on both local and regional levels in the following areas:

Employee Certification Training

Employee Certification Training is a self-paced program designed for franchise employees. Certification is awarded after the successful completion of course materials and an examination. Modules include:

  • Crew Training
  • Fire Restoration
  • Water Restoration
  • Carpet and Upholstery Cleaning

New Franchise Training

A 15 day in-house, hands-on training program at our corporate training facility. Designed primarily for new franchise owners but also a valuable course for franchise employees. The program covers all aspects of:

  • Fire Restoration
  • Water Restoration
  • Carpet and Upholstery Cleaning
  • Mold Mitigation


Our e-learning program is web-based and designed to be an ongoing self-paced training program. Video presentations and support materials are followed by a knowledge test at the end of each module.

IICRC Training Program

SERVPRO is an approved IICRC Training School that offers year-round classes in the following categories:

  • Fire Restoration
  • Water Restoration
  • Carpet Cleaning
  • Upholstery Cleaning
  • Applied Structural Drying
  • (in our purpose-built ASD facility)

Continuing Education

SERVPRO offers credit and non-credit courses for insurance agents, insurance adjusters, real estate professionals, and franchise staff. These programs are designed to improve knowledge of emergency mitigation. Courses include:

  • Water Damage Restoration
  • Fire Damage Restoration
  • Understanding Mold in the Restoration Industry
  • Restorative Drying for Loss Control
  • Mitigation Awareness Response Seminar
  • (non-credit courses)

How Can The Ongoing Training Of SERVPRO Of South And Northwest Grand Rapids Technicians Benefit Me?

When you work with a SERVPRO of South and Northwest Grand Rapids technician, you can be sure that:

  • your restoration will be completed in a timely and professional manner
  • all recovery will be made using the correct techniques for every material and situation
  • your safety will be the foremost concern
  • your technician will be equipped to work with any insurance representatives
  • dangerous chemicals and substances will be managed and disposed of properly and safely
  • unsafe structural elements will be assessed and repaired or removed accordingly

When it comes to safety and restoration, the team here at SERVPRO of South and Northwest Grand Rapids is ready to go, day or night. If the worst happens, you can count on us to be there right away to help you get back to normal as soon as possible. We have the right training, equipment, and skills to help you manage disasters of any size, including water damage, biohazards, and more. 

We can get your home or business Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned, too.

This franchise is Independently Owned and Operated.

Maintaining Your Smoke Detectors

7/13/2021 (Permalink)

Smoke detectors are not something we pay much attention to during our day-to-day living, but they immediately become essential if a fire happens! Make it a priority to maintain your smoke detectors regularly so that they are always ready to alert you in the event of a fire. 

Making Sure Your Smoke Detectors Work As They Should

  • Make sure you know how old your alarms are, and test them monthly using the provided test button.  
  • Keep them clean and free of greasy build-up and dust, which could affect their performance. A scheduled cleaning will make sure your smoke detectors stay in good working order.
  • Ensure that your smoke detectors are powered up and ready to go at all times and schedule battery changes so that they are always prepared to alert you whenever you need them.
  • Your smoke detectors should all go off simultaneously in the event of a fire, so contact a professional to make sure they are all synced.
  • Replace all smoke detectors, including those using 10-year batteries and hard-wired alarms, before turning ten years old. If they don’t respond correctly during a routine check, it’s definitely time for new units. 
  • Save and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for testing and maintenance of your units. 
  • A certified inspection entity should mark your smoke detectors. 

Install Smoke Detectors In All The Right Places

  • Every room in your home or business needs a smoke detector, any place where people will be, and where a product is stored, as well. 
  • Each unit should be securely fastened to its surface, whether it is a wall or a ceiling. 
  • Ensure that smoke detectors are in all areas where people spend time, from the bathroom to the warehouse of your business, and remember that customer waiting areas and public restrooms need to be outfitted, as well. 

We care about your safety here at SERVPRO of South/Northwest Grand Rapids, so don’t hesitate to contact us for all your large-scale cleanup projects. We’re experts at handling water and fire damage, mold prevention and remediation, vandalism, and biohazards. Ask us how we can get your home or business Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned. This franchise is independently owned and operated. 

Someone Vandalized my Commercial Property, Now What?

6/29/2021 (Permalink)

You’ve worked hard to build your commercial business, investing time, effort, and money into your enterprise over time to achieve your goals. Setbacks happen, economic conditions fluctuate, and challenges arise every day, and as a wise business owner, you meet them all head-on, managing every adverse circumstance, large or small. Building a business is hard, so choosing to partner with a professional restoration business can be a wise business decision when situations arise. 

How To Manage Vandalism To Your Commercial Property

A restoration company like SERVPRO can be there right away if you experience the damage that comes from vandalism. Our team will help you get back to work as soon as possible if your operations are disturbed. 

Vandalism can be damaged property from a break-in, such as broken windows, doors, or other entry points. It can also be more severe and malicious, involving dangerous substances, unsafe conditions, or a biohazard. No matter what you are facing, trained SERVPRO professionals can help you manage it safely. 

SERVPRO Is Here To Get You Back To Normal

Depending on the type of damage you have experienced, a vandalism event can stop you from working. We are here to do whatever is needed to ensure you can return to normal as soon as possible with minimum loss. If your location is unsightly due to the work of a vandal, we can complete that kind of restoration project right away. At the same time, if there are unsafe conditions in your business, we will assess the situation first to ensure that your location is safe for anyone who needs to be there. We will complete all repairs and restoration so that your commercial property is as good as new!

In addition to vandalism, SERVPRO of South /Northwest Grand Rapids specializes in cleanup projects of all types and sizes. From flooding and spills that cause water damage to soot and smoke removal and all the other issues that occur after a fire, we are the folks to call for help. We have the equipment and experience necessary for mold prevention and remediation, too, and we can get your home or business Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned, as well. This franchise is independently owned and operated.