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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Archived Blog Posts

Central Oregon and Severe Weather - Tips to Keep Your Biggest Asset Safe

6/30/2022 (Permalink)

They say that if you don’t like the weather in Central Oregon, wait 15 minutes. And while our weather doesn’t change that often, it can be unpredictable and intense. This year is no different. 

We've seen it all, from heavy rains and flooding to hail and thunderstorms, and it is only July. Despite our dry climate, we are highly prone to mold in Central Oregon homes and businesses. Mold can be dangerous, so it is essential to familiarize yourself with how water often makes its way into our beloved homes so you can prevent it from entering yours.

  1. Perimeter Drain - Does your home have proper channels around its perimeter for water drainage? These channels are critical for diverting water away from your home’s foundation. These are located underground, and all homes today are built with them. That said, they can become clogged with dirt, roots, and underground debris, leading to flooding in your crawlspace. Sometimes you can see signs of perimeter drain issues—for example, water pooling in your yard or against your home.
  2. Clogged Gutters - Fall leaves and other debris not cleared from gutters can lead to water flooding the home. Here’s how, during a heavy downpour, the gutters overflow with water; this can cause a trench to form next to your home, putting pressure on your foundation and walls. Clogged gutters can also result in roof damage, siding damage, erosion, and ice dams in the winter. 
  3. House Wrap Moisture - Most homes built today are wrapped to protect them from various problems by preventing the air and water from getting inside your home. Some home wraps are less permeable to moisture vapor, which can lead to mold, mildew, and rot. This can trap water against your home in the event of a leak or flood. 
  4. Moldy Crawlspace. Crawl space and basement mold are two of the most common areas in a home with mold growth. And at SERVPRO of Bend and SERVPRO of North Deschutes, Crook, and Jefferson Counties, we see a lot of it in our local homes. Mold is everywhere and can hitch a ride into your home from unsuspecting pets and humans. But it can also enter through windows and your HVAC. Mold can enter your crawl space if it is not vented, sealed, or if a moisture barrier isn’t present. Mold needs moisture to thrive. As long as there aren’t any water issues in your home, mold is benign. But in the face of a storm or after water damage, trapped water can lead to mold growing and spreading. We recommend that homeowners have their crawl space inspected annually. Doing so will allow you to first and foremost know if you have mold. But it will also let you know if any issues could attract mold growth, such as leaking pipes, cracks, and decayed wooden joists and beams. 

Your home is your most significant investment. Treat it as such by taking the preventative measures mentioned above. If you identify issues that need to be addressed, the experts at SERVPRO are ready and willing to help, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Protecting Your Space from Wildfire: Tips for Central Oregonians

6/30/2022 (Permalink)

In addition to barbeques, hikes, and floats in the Deschutes, comes the substantial risk of wildfires every summer. And while their permeation of our summertime air is a relatively recent occurrence compared to our area’s logging history, it is a danger nonetheless. 

Wildfires are an ecological process designed to keep our forests healthy. As homes creep closer to our forests, the risk of fire damage to homes substantially increases. According to the Deschutes County Wildfire Mitigation Report, 96 percent of Deschutes County's land is located in a fire hazard area. And as the risk for fire damage increases, the need for fire damage prevention measures becomes more critical. 

How is Wildfire Prevented?

Central Oregonians know the phrase “prescribed burn,” which the Forest Service manages to benefit natural resources and reduce the risk of unwanted wildfires in the future. These burns maintain the health of a forest by removing dead leaves, limbs, and other debris. By clearing the land, the prescribed burn helps prevent a wildfire. 

But as we know, they don’t provide a 100 percent guarantee against wildfires from occurring. It is up to our Central Oregon homeowners to ensure their property is fire-safe. One of the best ways to achieve this is to create a defensible space.

What is a Defensible Space?

A defensible space is a virtual bubble surrounding the home where burnable material (fuel) is minimized. According to the OSU Extension Service, in the event of a wildfire, defensible spaces allow firefighters to safely defend homes and other structures while severing a direct pathway from a fire to a home. 

How to Create a Defensible Space?

To create a defensible space, you must reduce flammable vegetation and other fuels around the home. There are different zones; what you do for each zone depends on the distance to the house. 

Zone 0 - extends 0-5 feet from the structure. 

Zone 1-  extends 30 feet from the structure. 

Zone 2 - extends 30-100 feet from buildings.

Some examples of creating a defensible space include:

  • Removing dead plant materials, such as leaves and dry mulch) that accumulates on the ground surrounding your home and in the gutters. 
  • Removing or trimming limbs that overhang the home, so they are no closer than 10 feet from the roof or siding.
  • Replacing mulch with rocks or other nonflammable material within 10 feet of the home.
  • Storing firewood and lumber at least 10 feet from the home. 
  • Limiting plants surrounding the home to low-growing, non-woody, and adequately watered species.
  • Cutting grass to no higher than 4 inches. 
  • Use fire-resistant plants that are native to Central Oregon.

If an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, the steps outlined above can help make a significant difference should a wildfire spread near your home. Take the time to protect your biggest asset now; you’ll be glad you did.

Mold can be found in inconspicuous places

6/1/2022 (Permalink)

On several occasions, technicians from SERVPRO of Bend will be working at a property where water damage has occurred and find secondary damage such as mold.

The interesting factor is that some of that secondary damage wasn't a result of the current water loss. A house in Redmond, Oregon suffered a water loss and while removing some of the affected baseboard, they found mold that had grown between the wood base and the drywall. However, this particular area was not specifically affected by the current water loss.

Upon further investigation, the property owner communicated that they had a water loss the previous year but figured that they had cleaned it so quickly, that they didn't think it had affected any of the finishes in the home.

Even minor water losses, if not handled correctly can increase the opportunity for secondary damage, such as mold to occur.

If you have any questions about previous water damage, or current water damage that you feel might still be affecting your property, feel free to give SERVPRO of Bend a call at 541-385-7044. 

Fluctuation in Central Oregon Weather

5/31/2022 (Permalink)

Central Oregon weather can be forever fluctuating. Its not uncommon to experience bright, sunny skies in the morning only to be greeted with snow flurries in the afternoon. The end of May and early June are especially active with sudden in weather fluctuations, especially sudden rain storms.

SERVPRO of Bend has had calls from property owners who have been working on a roof or construction on a building that has been open to the elements, thinking that the previous sunny days will continue. Unfortunately, this isn't always the case and having the areas exposed can cause unplanned damage to the property.

SERVPRO of Bend recommends to always check the forecast in your local area to ensure that your project, if exposed to the elements is properly protected by a tarp or other means of protection.

If you have questions about protecting your property during a construction project, feel free to give SERVPRO of Bend a call.

Spring Mold: What’s Lurking Behind Your Walls?

5/26/2022 (Permalink)

We may live in the High Desert, but that doesn’t mean we are immune to mold. Mold is everywhere, and it has been around for millions of years. Mold has the important job of breaking down trees, leaves, and other plant matter. 

Microscopic mold spores are floating through the air in search of food. They may enter your home or commercial space through windows, doors, AC/heating systems, or hitch a ride on your clothing or family dog. These airborne fungi love cellulose - or wood products. Mold can’t distinguish between the walls in our home and the dead tree in the forest. So if the environment is right, it will grow wherever it lands - and it eats what it lands on.

The springtime is the perfect time for the spores to visit. As the warmer weather beckons us to open our windows, mold can enter our homes. Plus, mold likes temperatures between 41 degrees to 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit. The only other thing mold needs to thrive is moisture. And while we tend to lack in the humidity department, any leaks or standing water will attract mold spores. Mold spreads very quickly, so even if you have a small mold problem today, it can become a significant problem before you know it. 

How to Identify Mold

Mold has a telltale musty odor. It also can appear as spots of many different colors. Mold may appear on your walls, window sills, sink, or on your home's siding. But mold can also hide behind your walls, in your crawl space, or under your roof. 

Act Fast.

If you find mold, it is essential to act quickly. As previously mentioned, mold virtually grows at warp speed. The sooner you respond, the more limited the damage - and the costs associated with repairing said damage. 

Address the cause of the mold. 

Mold and moisture go hand in hand. You must address the underlying cause, or the mold will return. 

Don’t try to remove mold without containing the area.

Mold spreads by releasing millions of mold spores into the air. Only remove mold by containing the area and wearing personal protective equipment (PPE).  Better yet, hire a mold remediation specialist like SERVPRO of Bend and SERVPRO of N. Deschutes, Crook, and Jefferson Counties. 

Don’t cover up mold.

Never caulk or paint over mold. You can’t cover up the problem and hope it goes away. Ensure mold is properly removed and the underlying cause is fully addressed BEFORE painting or caulking the area. 

Porous materials may need to be replaced. 

Mold proliferates on porous surfaces, such as carpet, upholstery, and furniture. It will fill the empty spaces in the material (imagine a sponge with holes), making it virtually impossible to remove completely. 

Understand the difference between removal and remediation.

Since mold spores are microscopic and exist everywhere, it is impossible to eradicate mold. To correctly address a mold problem, SERVPRO of Bend will:

  • Inspect and assess the mold damage
  • Contain mold using physical barriers and negative air pressure
  • Filter the area to prevent the spread of spores during cleanup
  • Remove mold and mold-infested materials
  • Clean and disinfect all contents and belongings affected by mold
  • Restore the areas impacted by mold

If you identify mold or suspect you may have a mold problem, call our experts today at 541-385-7044. We are here to answer your questions or concerns 24 hours a day and seven days a week. 

Defensible Space in Central Oregon

5/25/2022 (Permalink)

Central Oregon is a wonderful outdoor playground, whether you enjoy hiking, mountain biking, or fishing.  Unfortunately, the beautiful forests, lakes and streams that surround our high desert wonderland are also susceptible to wild fires. 

For Central Oregonians who live in a wooded area, we highly recommend that you create a defensible space around the perimeter of your home. What is a defensible space?

Defensible space is the area between a house and an oncoming wildfire that acts as a buffer that slows the fire and provides an opportunity for firefighters to defend the home. Defensible space is created and maintained through the proper management and modification of vegetation in the area immediately surrounding your home.

If you live in Central Oregon and have questions about how you can create a defensible space within your own yard, feel free to give SERVPRO of Bend a call at 541-385-7044.

SERVPRO of Bend Offers Free Emergency Ready Plans to Area Businesses

4/20/2022 (Permalink)

Nobody expects an emergency to happen, especially to them. However, the reality is that disasters can happen to anyone, anytime and anywhere. Being prepared is critical to keeping yourself, your employees, and customers safe while minimizing property damage. 

Disasters can come in many forms. After one, the cost to rebuild and reopen is high enough to prevent 50% of all businesses from ever opening their doors again. Of the companies that survived, the majority had a preparedness plan. This plan placed them in a better position to recover and continue operations.

And that’s where SERVPRO of Bend and SERVPRO of North Deschutes, Jefferson, and Crook County come in. 

In reality, you can be ruined, or you can be ready. And being prepared is akin to survival - knowing that you’re prepared for whatever happens can bring much peace of mind. Plus, having a plan tells your customers and employees that they don’t necessarily have to be impacted if a disaster affects your business.

The SERVPRO Emergency READY Profile is a FREE service provided for any commercial business within Deschutes, Crook, and Jefferson counties. The plan includes vital information on what to do and expect in an emergency. Timely action is crucial for mitigating costly damage and can help minimize how water and fire damage can affect a business. 

What You Get with the FREE SERVPRO Emergency Ready Profile

  • A no-cost comprehensive assessment of your facility, which is completed within about three hours
  • A concise Profile Document that contains only the critical information needed in the event of an emergency
  • A guide to help you get back into your building following a disaster
  • Confidence that in the event of a disaster, SERVPRO of Bend is close by and ready to help mitigate the damage
  • Identification of the line of command for authorizing work to begin - specifically, who will make decisions on the work needed to be completed
  • Facility details such as shut-off valve locations, priority areas, and priority contact information. This quick reference guide clearly shows what to do, how to do it, and who to call in the event of an emergency. 

Time is money. Having a quick reference guide will help you move faster and more safely, so you can fix problems and get back to serving your customers and making money.

There’s An Emergency Preparedness App for That

In today’s high-tech age, it’s wonderful to know that your emergency-ready plan can be at your fingertips. The SERVPRO’s Ready Plan Mobile App is a critical tool in an emergency. Within the app, your Emergency Ready Profile™ resides, ready with essential facility information to help you speed up response time. 

If your business doesn’t have an emergency-ready plan, we encourage you to take the time to schedule one with SERVPRO of Bend or SERVPRO of North Deschutes, Jefferson, and Crook Counties. This free service can be the lifeline of your business. Call 541-385-7044 to schedule your free emergency-ready profile with SERVPRO today. 

Microbursts - The Storms You Never Expected Can Sometimes Cause the Most Damage

3/29/2022 (Permalink)

As we retreat from winter’s grip, the days grow longer, hinting at the warmer weather to come. And while snow can happen almost any time of the year in Central Oregon, most of us eagerly anticipate the change of season and the beauty that comes with it. But as winter turns to spring, the warmer gives way to a phenomenon called a microburst. 

According to the National Weather Service, a microburst is a “localized column of sinking air within a thunderstorm.” Do you recall the pounding hail storm we had a few years ago that seemingly came out of nowhere and destroyed hemp crops in Tumalo? That was a microburst, and they can be as damaging, life-threatening, and dangerous as a tornado. 

With wind speeds up to 100+ miles per hour, a microburst can cause significant damage to anything in its path, such as homes, commercial buildings, and crops. The damage can be pretty shocking when these storms come out of nowhere. We are used to advanced warnings of snowstorms and rain. But microbursts often appear with minimal warning, catching unsuspecting property owners off guard. The window left open in the house suddenly becomes the source of significant water damage to the home or commercial space. 

At SERVPRO of Bend, we are no stranger to microbursts or other types of storm damage. We understand the complexity and urgency of addressing storm damage and are ready to respond immediately - 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Our team includes highly trained, and certified technicians and carpenters prepared to repair whatever property damage you experience. And while we are here for you, whenever or wherever you need us, we wanted to provide some tips for helping protect your property from storm damage this spring and summer. 

  1. Prune trees. A lot of damage from storms comes from fallen trees and broken branches. Trim trees that are close to the home. Look for clustered or touching branches and trim branches to create stability in weight distribution. Hire an arborist to get the job done right. Double stake any newly planted trees to protect against getting uprooted in a storm. 
  2. Inspect the roof for loose shingles and empty gutters of leaves, and any yard debris. We recommend hiring a professional for any repairs needed.
  3. Check the seal around windows for cracks and repair them to prevent water from entering the home.
  4. Close doors. In the event of a microburst, close all the doors to the home or business - including interior doors. Doing so will help prevent pressure build-up inside the structure, which could cause significant destruction. 
  5. Inspect garage. Unless your garage has windows, you should see little light around the garage door. Wheels should fit securely in the roller tracks. The more opportunities for air to enter the structure, the greater the chance for the wind to lift off the roof.
  6. Inspect siding. Changing temperatures can cause the siding to crack pull away from the foundation or gap. If gaps or cracks are identified, seal them. If damage is significant enough, replace the siding. 
  7. Inspect outbuildings. If your home or commercial space has any outbuildings, ensure they are secured to the ground to prevent them from becoming projectiles. 
  8. Secure lawn furniture, grills, and other items. Bring furniture cushions indoors to prevent them from becoming airborne if the weather service predicts significant thunderstorms. 

Microbursts and other damaging storms are a reality that you should account for. While your property can often be replaced, it is an asset most of us don’t want to risk losing. Take proactive steps now to mitigate your risk of significant damage in the event of a severe storm.

If you experience storm damage in Bend, Redmond, or anywhere in Deschutes, Jefferson, or Crook County, SERVPRO is here to help, whenever or wherever you need us. 

SERVPRO of Bend Storm Readiness

3/28/2022 (Permalink)

At SERVPRO of Bend, we get a lot of questions regarding how SERVPRO gets information regarding storms, especially when there is a storm brewing in a region that we service. One huge advantage to all  SERVPRO franchises like SERVPRO of Bend is that SERVPRO HQ employs our very own meteorologist who continues to monitor the weather patterns nationally. Locally, we strive to stay ahead of the curve by observing weekly and monthly local weather patterns and gearing up to accommodate any size storm that may come our way.

Central Oregon weather patterns are finicky, and it is not uncommon during March, April, and May to have sunny skies one hour and then a torrential hailstorm the next. Regardless of what is coming our way, SERVPRO of Bend is ready to deal with what mother nature brings our way. SERVPRO can maximize production volume during a storm event because of our access to many other franchises who are ready to be dispatched within hours.

If you have questions regarding SERVPRO’s Storm team and how we can help during any size disaster, feel free to give us a call at 541-385-7044.

Why Do You Need SERVPRO?

3/17/2022 (Permalink)

Imagine you’ve just experienced a fire in your home, a flood, or a major storm. You and your family are safe, but you’re standing in the middle of a disaster zone—or what used to be your home. 

Perhaps the roof or siding of your home has been compromised, or there is a foot of stagnant water sloshing around in your basement. Your home might be dangerous to be inside or even unlivable. These types of situations can cause a considerable amount of stress and worry, not to mention a health or safety hazard for you and your family. Your home needs restoration, and quickly, before the problem gets worse, and believe it or not, it can get worse.

When you’re faced with flood, fire, or storm damage to your home or other property, a helping hand from a professional can make all the difference. At SERVPRO of Bend, we’re trained to assess and repair damage to your home and get it fixed as quickly as possible.

We’re responsive in an emergency.

Disaster doesn’t keep a 9-to-5 schedule, which is why we provide 24-hour emergency services in the Bend, Redmond, Madras, Sunriver, La Pine, Prineville, and other surrounding Central Oregon areas. 

We’re responsive to you regardless of the hour or day because we understand the situation's urgency. It’s our priority to prevent secondary damage from affecting your home and do everything we can to help reduce your overall costs. 

In just 48 hours, a situation like water damage can eat away at your home, costing you a considerable amount of time and money. SERVPRO of Bend responds faster than any other service—regardless of the size of your emergency.

We’re restoration specialists.

When you’re dealing with property damage, you want the help of a highly trained professional who can assess the situation quickly and efficiently. Here at SERVPRO, we respond to your emergency with certified technicians who are experienced in property damage restoration and who are ready to answer your questions—right there on the spot.

Our technicians are trained to standards set by the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC), with an understanding of the following restoration topics:

  • Fire restoration
  • Water restoration
  • Carpet and upholstery cleaning
  • Mold mitigation

We’re also focused on continuing education, keeping our staff up-to-date on the best ways to mitigate emergencies, and restoring your home after it has been affected by water, fire, or storm damage. 

SERVPRO is part of the community.

Thanks to our network of 1,700 franchises across the country, we can get to you quickly, no matter where you are. We have technicians and carpenters available on call 24/7, with the knowledge and experience you need to restore your home. 

At SERVPRO of Bend, we’re locally opened and operated, which means we live here, too—and we’re equipped to repair any kind of damage that can affect your Central Oregon home. We have the resources you need to handle any major event, regardless of how big or small.

Are you dealing with the destructive aftermath of a fire, flood, storm, or other natural disaster? For emergency and damage restoration services in Bend, OR, and the surrounding Central Oregon area, contact us at SERVPRO of Bend for a team of disaster recovery professionals. We are also available in North Deschutes, Jefferson, and Crook County

Some Intricacies of a Commercial Property

3/1/2022 (Permalink)

The intricacies of a commercial property can be intimidating if you’re not sure what you’re looking at. When a commercial property suffers property damage, it is extremely important that whoever responds, not only understand the mechanics of what they’re looking at but also what may not be so obvious.

Commercial properties often have interstitial spaces. An interstitial space is an intermediate space located between regular-use floors, commonly located in hospitals and laboratory-type buildings to allow space for the mechanical systems of the building. Some of those systems, such as a fire suppression system can be extremely sensitive and if not handled correctly, can cause more damage than the original loss.

SERVPRO of Bend understands the processes needed to assess and plan for when a commercial building has property damage. We are certified in drying of commercial buildings through the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC.)

If you have any questions regarding drying a commercial building or would like a technician from SERVPRO to come out and perform an onsite, Emergency Ready Profile at no cost to you, give us a call at 541-385-7044.

Water Intrusion Detection Can Be Tricky

2/18/2022 (Permalink)

Water intrusion can be tricky, especially when there is no obvious cause at the time of discovery. Fortunately, SERVPRO of Bend has a multitude of tools and resources for our Fire and Water Technician’s that assist them when the source of the water intrusion might not be so obvious.

SERVPRO of Bend Water Technicians were called to a commercial property in Redmond, Oregon when the maintenance department discovered a small bubble forming on the ceiling of the pool room. SERVPRO of Bend Water Technicians began metering the area with a non-intrusive, moisture meter. Due to the thickness of the materials in the area, the surface meter was not picking up the expected readings for the material.

SERVPRO of Bend Water Technicians then used their infrared guided measurement tool to quickly target the area where the bubble was forming. The infrared images showed that there was bound water in the top layer of the affected drywall material, but it had not saturated the second level enough to register on a non-intrusive, surface meter.

SERVPRO of Bend were able to focus their efforts on the affected area, which enabled them to only remove the necessary materials and get the commercial property dry and back to its preloss condition.

If you have questions about a possible water loss or the use of infrared technology, feel free to contact SERVPRO of Bend at 541-385-7044.

Unfinished Crawlspace Can Cause Excessive Moisture

2/15/2022 (Permalink)

Many of the homes in Central Oregon are built with a crawlspace. A crawlspace is the narrow area between the ground and the first floor of a home. It is typically unfinished, with a dirt floor. In some cases it can be as narrow as 2-ft. x 2-ft., just enough room to crawl around inside — hence the name. A crawlspace is often an access point for electrical, plumbing and ventilation within the home.

A crawlspace is typically vented to the outside or an adjoining basement. This ventilation allows air to circulate below the house. However, if a crawlspace is not properly vented, excessive moisture from the ground can accumulate on wood and concrete. Many homeowners also like to use the space for storage, though one should consider the moisture and environment first. Unfinished, properly vented  crawlspaces are good for storing construction materials like bricks, tiles, piping or anything that won’t be damaged by moisture. Ventilation is a key factor in optimizing a crawlspace.

Unless you live in a dry climate, moisture can be an issue, especially in an unfinished crawlspace. Not only would the humidity damage things like clothes, books, food and furniture, but moisture can lead to mold and mildew growth.

If you have questions about mold in a crawlspace or if your crawlspace is adequately ventilated, feel free to give SERVPRO of Bend a call at 541-385-7044. We service Bend, Redmond, La Pine, Prineville, Sunriver, Madras and most of Central Oregon.

Going Beyond Just Placing Equipment

2/10/2022 (Permalink)


Immediate action is crucial when dealing with water damage. At SERVPRO of Bend We specialize in water damage restoration. We have extensive water damage restoration training, and our process emphasizes regular monitoring and documentation of the drying process from beginning to end.

Our Water Mitigation technicians are certified through the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) to ensure that our customers are receiving a quality of service that goes beyond someone just showing up and placing equipment. Our Technicians understand the Science of Drying and apply drying standards to each job to ensure that the job is being completed quickly and thoroughly.

Our advanced equipment helps to detect hidden moisture, extract the standing water quickly, and thoroughly clean and dry your home and belongings. We finish the job with professional deodorization and sanitizing agents for your comfort and safety.

If you live in Bend, Redmond, La Pine, Sunriver, Madras or any other area in Central Oregon and need assistance with water damage, don't hesitate to give SERVPRO of Bend a call at 541-385-7044.

Commercial Versus Residential Mitigation

2/9/2022 (Permalink)

Providing mitigation services to both a Commercial property is not the same as providing the same services to a residential property. Commercial properties have more advanced systems and intricacies in the structure that many other companies do not have the expertise or knowledge to properly manage. SERVPRO of Bend has the unique disposition of being a general contractor (CCB#203503) for both residential and commercial properties and is certified in Commercial Drying through the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC). 

When we are onsite at a commercial property, SERVPRO of Bend will have a certified technician to properly mitigate a commercial property. This is our commitment to our customers.

We service Bend, Redmond, Madras, Sunriver, La Pine, Prineville and surrounding areas within Central Oregon. If you have questions about our commercial property services, feel free to give SERVPRO of Bend a call (541) 385-7044.

Storm Response Program

2/2/2022 (Permalink)

Property Damage can be stressful no matter the size of the loss. From a small leak under a bathroom sink to a major snowstorm battering cities across the nation, SERVPRO continues to be available for Fire, Water, and Storm damage mitigation and repair.

SERVPRO is one of the few organizations that have a Storm Response Program that allows us to maximize production volume because of weather and catastrophic events. The program is capable of scaling to manage catastrophic events – from a local micro-burst, up to large-scale hurricanes which requires mobilization of hundreds of crews.

SERVPRO of Bend Technicians are part of a larger “one team” effort to assist in areas that have been affected by storm events.

If you have interest how SERVPRO of Bend responds to storm events or need assistance with any size property damage, feel free and give SERVPRO of Bend a call at 541-385-7044.

Indoor Pool Room

2/1/2022 (Permalink)

Indoor Pool Room

Water can occur in three states: solid (ice), liquid or gas (vapor). Though in some cases, such as solid or liquid it is more obvious when water damage occurs. However, vapor can be just as damaging to porous materials such as drywall, wood or concrete with less noticeable results.

SERVPRO of Bend was called to a home where the property owner had an indoor pool and noticed extreme moisture in the air. The damage got worse when they started seeing paint peeling from the walls and some of the drywall tape coming off. When technicians from SERVPRO of Bend began using an infrared camera to assess the damage, they found that the walls and ceiling were saturated with water.

Using handheld meters, technicians were able to confirm that the moisture in the air was at saturation, 100% humidity and that most of the porous materials in the room were soaking up the moisture from the air.

SERVPRO of Bend discovered that the dehumidifier that had been installed in the pool room had malfunctioned. Though running, the installed dehumidifier was not able to keep up with the amount of humidity being generated from the pool room.

SERVPRO of Bend Technicians removed the damaged materials and used a desiccant dehumidifier to remove the excess amount of moisture in the air until the on-site dehumidifier was fixed. If you have interest in the science of drying or just want to inquiry about what we do, feel free and give SERVPRO of Bend a call at 541-385-7044.

SERVPRO Technicians Continuing Education

2/1/2022 (Permalink)


SERVPRO of Bend is committed to continuing education for our team members. We provide training and opportunities for our team members so they can advance their skills and keep up with the latest advancements and innovations in the disaster restoration and cleaning fields. Though the science of drying remains relatively the same, we feel it is our duty to continue researching new and inventive ways to get a damaged property or business back to its preloss condition.

Each year, we review the level of certifications our employees have and map out an education plan so that they can provide our customers with the latest, and most innovative techniques within the industry. SERVPRO of Bend is committed to providing services that exceed our customers’ expectations by providing continuing education and certification paths for each of our employees.  

If you’re interested in helping people who have suffered a property loss and want to advance your skills in the Cleaning and Restoration Industry, give SERVPRO of Bend a call at 541-385-7044.

The DNA of an Ice Dam - How to Safely Prevent and Remove Ice Dams

1/24/2022 (Permalink)

Does or did your house recently feature a beautiful display of icicles? Those icicles might be an indicator of a growing problem that any cautious homeowner should be aware of. You could have an ice dam, which is common to see in the Bend OR area–where we regularly experience snowy and freezing conditions from winter storms. 

An ice dam is caused by snow melting and refreezing on your roof, building into a layer of ice that becomes exactly what the term describes: an actual dam that traps water. This can be dangerous for your home and anyone living in it since a typical ice dam can weigh thousands of pounds. This weight can compromise the structure of your roof, which in turn can cause all kinds of damage to your house.

How to Prevent Ice Dams

The best way to deal with ice dams is to prevent them. There are several ways to keep ice from building up on your roof. Essentially, you want to keep your attic and your roof cold.

Clear off excess snow

Use a rake to clear snow off your roof after a winter storm. Specialized roof rakes usually come with an extension to make this process safe and easy. Remove the snow while it’s soft, and be sure to clear the eaves of any ice that might have already accumulated.

Add insulation

Ice dams form when hot air from your house is transferred to the roof. By adding insulation to your attic, you can prevent that heat transfer and help keep warm air inside your home where it’s more useful and energy-efficient. 

Seal off attic airflow leaks

Make sure your house isn’t leaking warm air through gaps and vents into the attic. Crawl up into your attic and pull back insulation. Check vents that allow air in from the outside and make sure they’re open. Intake vents are usually located on the underside of your roof and can help keep your roof from getting too warm.

How to Remove an Ice Dam

Once an ice dam has formed on your roof, it’s best to safely remove it to prevent damage to your house and injury to you or your family. Ice dams can wreak significant havoc on a building, tearing off gutters, damaging shingles, and potentially causing leaks that will only lead to more problems, like mold and mildew.

Can I remove an ice dam myself?

Breaking up an ice dam and removing it from your roof can be dangerous, not to mention difficult if you lack the proper tools. If you need to get on your roof, we recommend hiring a roofing company to help. But if you decide to get on your roof, or anywhere six feet up or higher, we recommend that you are tethered to protect your safety. 

After the ice dam is removed, our trained experts can recommend how best to repair your home, so it is like the ice dam never even happened. 

If you’ve noticed a rim of ice forming on your roof, have a roofing company take care of it as soon as possible! If you have any questions about repairing the damage caused by ice dams or other winter storm damage, or you’d like one of our professionals to take care of it for you, call us at 541-385-7044. 

Water Supply Break In Downtown Bend Oregon Commercial Building

1/11/2022 (Permalink)

At approximately 2:30 AM, SERVPRO of Bend's Emergency Services were dispatched to a commercial building that had suffered a water loss. Upon arriving, SERVPRO of Bend Technicians found pieces of ceiling tiles that had fallen due to the amount of water that had been leaking from above.

SERVPRO of Bend examined the area and found that a water supply line to a sink in the upstairs suite had sprung a leak. Thankfully the loss was discovered by the evening maintenance crew. Luckily, the person surveying the area discovered the damage early so damage was not as extensive as it could've been. Fortunately, the maintenance crew does routine routes, checking on all the suites within the building. The maintenance crew saw that some of the ceiling tiles had fallen and water was still dripping from the light fixtures.

SERVPRO of Bend Technicians were able to stabilize the leak until a plumber had arrived. The SERVPRO of Bend ER team then cleaned the ceiling tiles from the floor and began extracting water from the carpet. After extraction, axial fans and dehumidifiers were set up in the affected area and started the drying process. 

Having a concrete slab beneath the carpet benefited the company leasing the area because drying the affected areas took only two days, so business interruptions were kept to a minimum.

Bend Oregon Weather Advisory Due to High Winds

1/11/2022 (Permalink)

A weather alert for Central Oregon was issued, warning that winds coming from the south will be coming towards the area at 15 to 25 mph with gusts up to 45 mph. The weather alert warned that the speed of these wind gusts could blow around unsecured objects, tree limbs and possibly cause some power outages.

SERVPRO of Bend was called out to a local neighborhood where high winds had blown some roof tiles off of a house. The high winds wreaked havoc in the area. The residential street, where the home was located had various obstacles such as trash cans roof tiles and tree limbs littering the street. 

SERVPRO of Bend Technicians found that about a third of the tiles on the main apex of the roof had blown off. Judging from the damage, it appeared that this part of the roof took the brunt of the high wind gusts. The homeowner said she heard a quick wind burst that shook her house. As the gusts went over the house, she heard a lot of debris hitting her car and the adjoining property. Upon going outside, she saw that that the debris were roof tiles that had blown off her house. 

SERVPRO of Bend Technicians climbed on the roof, using the proper retractable fall arrest protection and were able to tarp the roof to protect the inside from further damage.

If you have damage due to high winds or storm, don't hesitate to call SERVPRO of Bend at (541) 385-7044.

Fire Damage to Residential Bend Oregon Home

1/11/2022 (Permalink)

Residential Fire Damage in Bend Oregon

SERVPRO of Bend received a call from a local Adjustor that they had a client who's property was damaged by fire and they needed SERVPRO to secure the area, since it is a high traffic area down town.

SERVPRO of Bend Technicians arrived to find that, after the site had been released by the Bend Fire Departments Fire Marshal, that the fire had damaged three-quarter of the property. The first thing SERVPRO of Bend was able to do was get fencing around the property and secure the area so to dissuade some curious onlookers to come in the perimeter to take a closer look.

This small neighborhood is especially significant to downtown Bend since it is registered as one of many historical homes. 

SERVPRO of Bend was able to secure the area and subsequently cleaned the site and all of the fire debris without incident.

If you have questions about Smoke, Odor or Fire Damage Cleanup and Repairs, feel free to give SERVPRO of Bend a call at (541) 385-7044. 

Water Damage Due to Sewage Back Up Redmond Oregon

1/11/2022 (Permalink)

Sewage Loss Redmond Oregon

SERVPRO of Bend received a phone call from a customer who's sewer had backed up, causing a large amount of sewage to spill into a few rooms in there home.

Due to the severity of the sewage loss, SERVPRO of Bend Technicians suited up in proper personal protective equipment (PPE) for this type of loss.

Upon entering the home, it was clear by the extent of the damage, that our technicians had to be extra cautious not to track any of the contaminated water to other areas of the house.

SERVPRO of Bend Technicians set up a containment to focus on just the affected area and for the safety of the property owners. Our Technicians were able to extract all of the water in the contaminated areas. They followed the extraction with removing contaminated materials such as carpet, carpet pad, tack strip, and other porous materials that had been affected. 

After proper removal and disposal of the affected materials, SERVPRO of Bend Technicians sprayed the areas with an Enzymatic Cleaner to break down any additional substances and counteract the sewage smell.

After making sure the areas were clean of all affected material and sewage, Technicians set up a drying chamber and were able to dry the affected areas in 3 days.

If you have questions about property damage due to sewage, feel free to call SERVPRO of Bend at (541) 385-7044.

Crawlspace Flooding Sunriver Oregon

1/11/2022 (Permalink)

Crawlspace Flood Sunriver Oregon

SERVPRO of Bend received a call from an insurance agent regarding a customer who had flooding in their crawlspace. The house was being used as a vacation rental property and the customer was from out-of-state. Between rentals, the neighbor had called the homeowner and reported water coming out from the foundation vents on the back side of the house.

SERVPRO of Bend responded and upon a quick assessment, found water still actively spilling out from the foundation vents. SERVPRO of Bend Technicians found the main water shut off to the property and were able to stop the water. However, that left standing water in the crawlspace, just below the foundation vents.

SERVPRO of Bend Technicians were able to spend the time to extract the water that had flooded the crawlspace. After the water was removed, our Technicians were able to assess the damage and found that a pipe had broken, most likely from a freeze break. Our Technicians were able to get a plumber out to fix the pipe and then they set up a drying chamber in the crawlspace. The drying chamber accelerated the dry time and we were able to get the area dry before the next set of renters were scheduled. 

The homeowner and agent were extremely grateful for SERVPRO of Bend's ability to get the damage repaired and dried before the next set of vacation renters arrived.

If you have a vacation rental and have concerns about possible water damage to it, feel free to call SERVPRO of Bend (541)385-7044.

Why did SERVPRO of Bend Only Cut My Drywall 12 inches from the floor?

1/6/2022 (Permalink)

Flood cut from water job.

A property owner asked SERVPRO of Bend, "Why did your technicians remove the Drywall twelve inches up from the floor rather than remove the Drywall from the whole wall?" 

This was a great question and we wanted to share the information with our web community.  

Drywall is the most common interior wall and ceiling finish material in North America. Drywall is easily damaged while wet, since it loses much of its strength and stiffness. If drywall has been exposed to excessive amounts of moisture and becomes saturated, it is our recommendation that the wet Drywall be removed, enabling the wood framing to be exposed for drying.

In a lot of cases, the moisture doesn't penetrate the whole wall. In such cases, SERVPRO of Bend would use a moisture meter to mark how much of the wall has been affected by moisture and only remove what is affected. In reference to our customers question, only the bottom twelve inches of the drywall in this case, needed to be removed. Commonly called a "flood cut," SERVPRO of Bend Technicians use this technique to removed the damaged drywall and open the wall cavity to accelerate the drying process.

If you have questions regarding the drying process or water mitigation processes feel free to give SERVPRO of Bend a call at (541) 385-7044.

Know The Storm Patterns In Your Area

1/6/2022 (Permalink)

Storm patterns in the United States vary based on one's geographical location. It is uncommon to have a Hurricane hit off the coast of California, Oregon, or Washington Just as it is uncommon to have snowfall on the coast of Florida, Georgia, or Mississippi.

With more than 1,700 franchises in the United States, there are many different storm patterns that that SERVPRO franchises are presented with. For instance, a temperature considered low in Orange County Florida may hover around 50 F or 10 C. In Bend Oregon, a cold temperature would be considered 15 F or -9.4 C. 

At SERVPRO of Bend, we are familiar with the average weather patterns in our area, but that doesn't exclude us from constantly monitoring the atmospheric changes. We do this to ensure that we're ready for most changes that may result in a storm event. We do this so we can be ready before drastic weather events occur. 

If you have any further questions about Storm events and how SERVPRO of Bend can help, feel free to give us a call at (541) 385-7044.

How to Prevent a Frozen Disaster

12/22/2021 (Permalink)

It is beginning to look a lot like winter. And with winter weather comes the possibility of frozen pipes. Water damage from pipes freezing, whether in a home or commercial structure, is the number one call we get each winter.  And as much as we love to help Central Oregonians in need, we feel it is our responsibility to provide tips to help reduce your risk of having frozen pipes this winter. 

Central Oregon is home to a lot of rental and vacation homes. And according to SERVPRO of Bend owner Brent Irwin, these structures are where most problems originate. There are a couple of reasons this often occurs. One is that the home is left vacant for extended periods with the thermostat turned off or low. Depending on the insurance carrier, the damage may not be covered. Another is when a renter ignores the problem and leaves it for the landlord to address. However, with the latter, if the situation worsens, flooding could occur, resulting in a loss of valuable possessions. 

But even if you live in Bend full time and own your home, it gets downright cold here. We recommend you do the following things to protect your home from a frozen disaster.

Here are five of them: 

  1. Set the thermostat to a minimum of 58°F. Enough said.
  2. Create ventilation. Open the cabinets in your home to allow room temperature air to keep the pipes a bit warmer. This is especially important if the cabinet is located against an outside wall. 
  3. Insulate exposed pipes in the attic, basement, and exterior walls. Foam insulation wraps split lengthwise can be easily attached to the plumbing. This type of insulation is very inexpensive and available for purchase at most home improvement stores. Be sure to put a foam cover on exterior faucets too. 
  4. Turn faucets onto a slow trickle. Any faucets that are attached to an outside wall should trickle water.  
  5. Caulk holes and leaks around piping. If you notice any airflow holes around your pipes, seal them with caulk to prevent cold air from damaging the pipes. 

If you are going to be away for an extended period, do all of the above plus:

  1. Close the inside valves that control the water supply. 
  2. If you’re expecting freezing temperatures turn off the water to any outside spigots and drain the water from the line. 

If your pipes freeze, shut off the water immediately. Thaw your frozen pipes using the warm air setting on a hairdryer or space heater. However, avoid leaving space heaters unattended. Once thawed, slowly turn the water back on. Inspect pipes for any sign of leaks or cracks. If you notice any leaks or cracks, turn the water off and call a licensed plumber. 

If your pipes burst, shut off your main water supply and call a licensed plumber immediately. Should you incur water damage or any other type of damage, contact your insurance provider and then SERVPRO of Bend to repair the damage quickly and safely. 

We are Central Oregon’s locally owned and operated disaster restoration company and offer 24-hour emergency service and highly trained water damage restoration technicians. Our team uses a comprehensive water damage restoration process to ensure the problem is solved the first time correctly. We hope you won’t need us, but if you do, we are here to help, making your problem "Like it never even happened." 

Commercial Business Tips for Structure Winterization

11/19/2021 (Permalink)

Winter is coming. And with it, the risk of damage to your commercial structure due to the freezing temperatures. When most people think of cold weather damage, burst pipes and collapsing roofs come to mind, especially here in Central Oregon. But costly damage can occur in other ways as well. Cold weather can cause fire prevention systems to malfunction, resulting in an inability to protect your structure in the event of a fire.

Instead of waiting for the damage to happen to your roof, pipes, or waterline, use the fall months to prepare your business for the inevitable cold temperatures that are to come.

Here are 13 tips that you can implement now to help your business survive the winter without damage and costly repairs. 

  1. Insulate water supply pipes that run through unheated spaces, such as mechanical rooms, exterior walls, and even attics. 
  2. Inspect water pipes quarterly for small leaks and corrosion. Taking the time to do this every three months will allow you to identify and correct any areas that need attention. 
  3. Ensure water shutoff valves are working correctly to protect your structure from a flood. 
  4. Keep thermostats set to 55ºF when the structure is unoccupied to prevent frozen pipes and subsequent water damage. Consider installing a programmable thermostat to automatically adjust temperatures when the building is not in use.
  5. Water temperature should be no less than 42ºF. 
  6. Keep utilities on in any vacant units. 
  7. Set faucets to have a slow drip to relieve any pressure in pipes that can result in them bursting.
  8. Install a leak detection system so you can be made aware of any leaks before they become a significant and costly problem. 
  9. Clear your roof of debris, leaves, and dirt, which can prevent gutters and downspouts from draining, resulting in ice dams and heavy snow buildup. 
  10. Inspect gutters and downspouts to ensure they are properly fastened to your building. 
  11. Have your boiler, furnace, and heaters serviced regularly.
  12. Ensure your fire pump room does not drop below 70ºF. 
  13. Mark sprinkler control valves so they are easily located in the event of a heavy snowfall. 

In the event of an emergency, we are here to help 24/7 at 541-385-7044. For more commercial safety and damage prevention tips, check out our blog here.

Winter Preparation Tips for PNW Homeowners

11/19/2021 (Permalink)

As the days grow shorter and cooler, getting your home ready for the winter weather to come is essential. Your home is your biggest asset. Therefore, you should take winter prep very seriously. Here are a few tips from your SERVPRO of Bend restoration experts.

    1. Prevent ice dams. Anyone who lived through the snowpocalypse of 2017 knows how costly ice dams can be. If your home typically gets icicles, that’s a red flag of possible trouble ahead. Consider adding heat tape (also known as heat cables or de-icing cables). When installed correctly, the heat tape will cause snow to melt from the roof’s edges, so it can flow down into gutters and away from your home. 
    2. Clear gutters and check for proper fastening. One of the best ways to prevent costly water damage repair and leaks is by clearing gutters of debris. During the fall, leaves and pine needles fall, which is left, can create a blockage that can hold water and freeze. One of the biggest culprits for ice dam formation is a frozen gutter. While you’re at it, ensure your gutters and downspouts are correctly fastened and resecure them if loose. Act now to prevent it from becoming an issue when the snow starts to fly.
    3. Clear the roof. While you’re on your roof cleaning out your gutters, go ahead and clear off any debris from the roof and replace warped, damaged, loose, or missing shingles that can leak during the winter. 
    4. Divert water away from your home. If you have gutters, consider adding extensions to your downspouts to divert water farther away from your home. We recommend that water be diverted five feet from your foundation. 
    5. Change the filters in your home. Every spring and fall (or at the onset of daylight savings time starting and ending) is the perfect time to change the filters in your home. 
    6. Clean dryer vents twice a year. Again, following a spring/fall schedule, clean your dryer vent to reduce the risk of a dryer fire. Clogged dryer vents are one of the biggest causes of house fires and the need for costly fire damage remediation
    7. Reverse your ceiling fans. Save money on your utility bill by reversing the direction of your ceiling fan’s blades. Doing so will push warm air down from the ceiling, creating energy efficiency and comfort during the cool winter months.
    8. Service your heating system. Ensure you stay warm this winter by having a professional come out to inspect and service your furnace or heat pump. Don’t risk being one of the homeowners waiting for someone to repair their furnace on the coldest day of the year.
    9. Insulate your crawlspace. Install vent covers on the exterior of all vents in your home. In Central Oregon, most people use styrofoam vent plugs which are very easy to install. 
    10. Put insulated covers on spigots. Disconnect all your garden hoses and drain water from your faucets. Place insulated covers on your spigots to prevent them from freezing this winter. If your spigot isn’t frost-proof, you can switch the shut-off valve inside your home. 
    11. Blow out your irrigation system. If you haven’t already, make blowing out your irrigation system a priority asap. Better yet, hire a professional to drain water from your drip lines to prevent freezing, and costly repairs come spring. 
    12. Replace smoke alarm and carbon monoxide batteries. Replace batteries every six months to ensure your alarms are in working order in the event of a fire. 
    13. Check for drafts around windows and doors. If you notice drafts or light entering your home from windows and doors, caulk the inside and out of windows to prevent warm air from escaping and cool air from entering your home. If you find leaks around your doors, replace weatherstripping. 

This fall, take the time to ensure your home is ready for winter. Doing so will help you avoid damage and costly repairs. Take care of your biggest asset by spending a weekend getting your home prepared for the winter weather to come. 

Protecting Your Home and Belongings During a Storm

9/30/2021 (Permalink)

The planet appears to be holding nothing back as storms rage across the United States. From hurricanes in the east, heavy rainfall and flooding in the southern plains, tornadoes in the midwest, and hail storms and wildfires in the west, the need to protect and insure your property is at an all-time high. And we haven’t even gotten to winter yet! Here are some tips to help protect your home from severe weather.

  1. Know what your insurance covers. Check your insurance policy to see if your plan covers damage caused by a natural disaster. Damage caused by hurricanes, tornadoes, or flooding is typically not covered in a home policy and must be purchased separately. 
  2. Make a list or videotape your possessions. Go through your home and make a list or videotape the items in it. Keep this in a safe place outside of your home, such as a safe deposit box. If something happens that requires you to file a claim, this documentation will prove very helpful in supporting your claim.
  3. Seal your windows and doors. Not only does it help reduce your energy costs, but sealing your windows and doors will also help protect your home against water and wind damage.
  4. Assess your roof. A roof is critical to keeping your home safe during a storm. Hire someone to check the structural integrity of your roof. Apply sealant around your pipes and chimney to ensure water doesn’t enter your home. 
  5. Clear gutters and storm drains. Fall is coming, and with it, lots of fallen leaves. Be sure to clear your gutters to allow water to drain without obstruction. If your gutters are clogged, water can leak into your foundation and create damage to your home. In the winter, clogged gutters can cause ice dam buildup.
  6. Trim branches away from your roof. Tree branches can damage your roof, break windows and scrape the side of your home. Ideally, no branches should touch your home. Trim any branches that hang over your roofline regularly. Hire a professional to remove or trim branches close to your home or do it yourself (if you can safely). 
  7. Install a carbon monoxide detector. Oregon law requires that all homes either sold or rented have a working carbon monoxide detector installed. 

SERVPRO of Bend Emergency Ready Profile

9/8/2021 (Permalink)

Did you know that 50% of businesses close down following a disaster?

Pre-planning can serve as an insurance policy aimed at your peace of mind.

SERVPRO offers a no cost Emergency Ready Profile assessment of your facility?

SERVPRO's Emergency Ready Profile is a tool used to minimize business interruption and allow a facility to have an immediate plan of action. Our Emergency Ready Profile (ERP) is a concise profile document that contains critical information that is needed in case your facility has an emergency.

The Emergency Ready Profile can help minimize the amount of time your business is inactive by having an immediate plan of action

The profile provides a facility with details such as shut-off valves locations, priority areas and priority contact information.

Having quick access via your cellular phone, or computer of what to do, how to do it and who to call provides solutions in advance of an emergency so that during the emergency you are "Ready for whatever happens."

Protect Yourself & Your Property from Smoke This Wildfire Season

8/19/2021 (Permalink)

Since this year’s wildfire season began in the Western U.S. and into Canada, the presence of smoke in seemingly unlikely areas across the country has drawn the attention of Americans as well as the media.

Where typically we might see images of ashy skies and smokey sunsets in our own region, both the media and our online friends have been quick to share overcast-looking images from regions as far as the Midwest and the Eastern Seaboard. The captions of the images point out, “This isn’t a foggy day. This is smoke!”

One particular series of images and videos show the Manhattan skyline blanketed in smoke along with news that the Air Quality Index (AQI) for fine particulate matter in the air had reached nearly 160 – all due to wildfires in the West.

While the long-distance travel potential of wildfire smoke may be surprising to some, it’s certainly not surprising to wildfire experts. In fact, just last year during what was considered one of the worst wildfire seasons in decades, smoke from wildfires in the Western U.S. drifted through the atmosphere for nearly 5,000 miles.

Even at such a distance, smoke can be harmful to young children, pregnant women, seniors, and people with respiratory and heart disease. Imagine the effect smoke can have on both health and property when its source is less than a tank of gas away!

As we at SERVPRO of Bend are experts in smoke damage and odor remediation, we wanted to offer you some expert advice about protecting your body and property from wildfire smoke. But first, let’s take a look at how air quality is measured.

A Little About the Air Quality Index (AQI)

If a wildfire is close enough to threaten your property, or even just a few miles away, you need little warning that smoke rolling into your area may be harmful. In addition to the smell and the difficulty you may have breathing, you may also notice ash falling from the sky.

There’s no doubt you’ll need to take precautions to protect yourself, your family, your pets, and your home.

But, what if the fire is hundreds or thousands of miles away, presenting itself as a hazy day with an odor reminiscent of a warm campfire? In this case, paying attention to the Air Quality Index (AQI) can help you determine your risk.

AQI is the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) index for air quality. It takes into consideration the number of pollutants in the air (i.e., ground-level ozone, particle pollution, carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, and nitrogen dioxide), then assigns a number that indicates the severity of such pollutants.

The numbers go from zero to well-over 300, with the highest numbers indicating the most extreme levels of concern. AQIs from zero to 50 is considered good, and those 51 to 100 are moderate to acceptable. Beyond that, people should begin to take precautions.

  • 101-150 – Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups: Members of sensitive groups (children, seniors, those with respiratory health issues, etc.) may experience health effects, while others are less likely to be affected.
  • 151-200 – Unhealthy: Some members of the public may experience health effects, and those insensitive groups may have more serious health issues.
  • 201-300 – Very Unhealthy: This is high enough for authorities to put out a health alert as the risk increases for everyone. Everyone should take precautions.
  • 300-Plus – Hazardous: This indicates an emergency condition. You’ll want to leave ASAP.

You can typically track your region's AQI in real-time through your smartphone’s weather and/or news app.

Protect Yourself from Wildfire Smoke

Wildfire smoke can be unpredictable and can enter your area to varying degrees with little to no warning. So, it’s important you’re prepared and know how to respond when the sky darkens and your nose first picks up the scent. Here are tips for reacting in such conditions:

Keep Your Indoor Air Clean: When smoke rolls into your area, seal off all entry points into your home by closing all doors, windows, and vents. Turn your AC to recirculate and close the fresh-air intake. If you need to, consider the use of an air purifier. Not only do you want to keep the air you breathe clean, but you also want to prevent the possibility of your home absorbing smoke odors and damage.

Stay Indoors: If you have no reason to go outdoors, don’t. Stay inside to keep your smoke exposure to a minimum. This goes not just for you and your family, but also for your pets.

Wear a Mask: If and when you have to go outside – say, to go to work, head to the grocery store or pick up the kids from school – wear a mask. We all have them at this point.

Don’t Contribute to the Problem: Lighting candles, using the fireplace and even vacuuming and dusting can further contribute to poor air quality in your home. So, why do it when you’re already fighting the smoke?

Don’t Ignore Your Health: If you experience health effects, leave your home and consider visiting your physician or an ER doctor. Or, if you’re in a high-risk population and your home’s not sealed and equipped to handle the smoke, perhaps treat yourself to a night in a nice hotel. You get no points for toughing it out.

Contact SERVPRO of Bend

During this wildfire season, if your home sustains any smoke damage, don’t try to handle it on your own. Contact the Fire and Smoke Restoration Technicians at SERVPRO of Bend, and our team will quickly respond to your needs and provide you an estimate for getting your home back to normal.

To learn more, call us at (541) 385-7044 or fill out our online contact form. We’ll be happy to get back in touch with you as soon as possible!

It’s Wildfire Season. Think ‘Fire Prevention’ When Maintaining Your Property

7/26/2021 (Permalink)

It’s wildfire season again in Central Oregon – a reality that few people are eager to deal with less than a year after we saw more area burned in the Oregon Cascades than any of the previous 36 years combined.

The Labor Day wildfires of 2020 may have affected more land in and around the Oregon Cascades than any single wildfire season over the last 120 years. And, the devastation wasn’t limited to isolated wilderness land. The fires damaged more than 4,000 structures (including homes) and led to more than 10% of the state’s residents experiencing some level of evacuation advisory.

Yes, last year’s wildfire season was one for the history books.

For homeowners specifically, we at SERVPRO of Bend believe such recent events can also serve as a great reminder of why it’s essential to always think of “fire prevention” when maintaining your home and property. These efforts include such considerations as using non-combustible building materials whenever possible and creating a defensible space around your home.

Keep reading to learn what you can do today and in the future to help keep your home safe in the event there’s a wildfire in your area.

What is a Defensible Space?

One of the best things a homeowner can do to prevent wildfires from spreading to their homes (or vice-versa, a home fire spreading into surrounding land) is to create a “bubble” around the house where burnable material, or fuel, is kept to a minimum.

This area is called defensible space.

“To help your home survive a wildfire, create defensible space between your home and its surroundings by 100 feet or more,” states the document “Keeping Your Home and Property Safe from Wildfire,” which was created by the Oregon State University (OSU) Extension Service.

According to the OSU Extension Service, in the event of a wildfire, defensible spaces allow firefighters to safely defend your home and other structures while breaking up a direct pathway from the fire to your home.

The primary way to create such a space is to reduce flammable vegetation and other fuels around the home. Regularly remove dead plant material (i.e., leaves, needles, twigs, dry mulch, and woodpiles) that accumulates along the ground and in your gutters, and trim back overhanging limbs by at least 10 feet from the roof and siding.

Keep your property “lean and green” as you extend away from the house, working to incorporate fire-resistant plants into the landscape. These options include various types of plants, from trees and shrubs to annuals and perennials. (OSU Extension Service offers a 48-page guide to fire-resistant plants that you can download here.)

Other Fire-Safe Considerations

Besides creating a defensible space, other fire-resistant considerations can be made when building, remodeling, or even simply replacing features of your home. These include:

Roof & Siding: Always consider combustibility when building or replacing your roof or siding. Avoid using easily combustible material, such as cedar shakes, which, while attractive, can act as kindling when dry.

Patios & Decks: These outdoor spaces can also serve as fuel when a wildfire’s close. Ideally, for fire prevention, these spaces will be made from concrete or first-resistant composites. Wood decking is fine so long as it’s been treated against fire.

Screen Entry Points: Homes typically have several low-key entry points, such as vents or chimneys, that can be susceptible to flying embers. Be sure to screen these areas with 1/8th- to 1/4th-inch wire mesh to prevent flaming materials from finding their way into your home. Do NOT use nylon window screens as they can quickly melt.

What If I Get Fire or Smoke Damage?

Despite these efforts at keeping wildfires at bay and away from your property, it’s still possible your home may sustain fire, soot, and smoke damage if a wildfire finds its way into your area or neighborhood.

Should this happen, SERVPRO of Bend is there to respond quickly to your needs. After all. Immediate action and fast response can limit damage, prevent further damage and reduce restoration costs.

If you’ve experienced the misfortune of fire, soot, or smoke damage, contact us today. Our 24/7 emergency services are available by calling us at (541) 385-7044. Our highly trained fire restoration technicians will be there to help you!

Have a Safe and Happy Independence Day

7/2/2021 (Permalink)

On behalf of all of us here at SERVPRO of Bend, have a great Independence Day.

Everybody be safe while we celebrate our Country's Independence. Quick History Moment: Independence Day commemorates the passage of the Declaration of Independence by the Continental Congress on July 4, 1776. There are a lot of great things going on in our community this 4th of July. If you're looking for things to do in Bend, Oregon this 4th of July, here are a few options to consider: July 3rd -  Fireworks in the Ballpark Night!The Bend Elks are proud to host one of the only firework shows in Central Oregon! Join us July 3rd as we take on Yakima Valley with a show after the game. Bend Pet Parade and Festival at Drake Park 9 AM - 2 PM Bend July 4th Fireworks, Pilot Butte at 10 PM La Pine Frontier Days, Jul 1, 5 PM – Mon, Jul 5, 6 AM  

Dry Rot in Central Oregon: Where, How & What to Do

6/28/2021 (Permalink)

More than 90 percent of all new homes are designed with wood serving as the primary material. Both natural and abundant, wood gives homes their shape while enhancing certain design elements that are pleasing to the eye.

Its most essential responsibility, however, is establishing a home’s structural integrity.

From beams, trusses, and joists to roofing, siding, and window frames, both builders and homeowners rely on wood to protect the longevity and safety of the structure while also protecting what, to most of us, is the most significant investment of our lives.

That’s why we at SERVPRO of Bend have determined that safeguarding a home from an all-to-common issue like dry rot is so critical.

If left undetected and untreated, dry rot can jeopardize a home’s structural integrity as well as its value. This can lead to safety issues, diminished home values, and thousands of dollars in future repair costs.

What is Dry Rot?

First off, the term “dry rot” is a bit of a misnomer.

Dry rot is a type of wood decay caused by a fungus called Serpula lacrymans. This type of fungus feeds on wood and timber, and for it to grow and spread, it needs a higher-than-normal level of moisture.

So, for dry rot to occur in a home, an excess moisture level must first exist. Unfortunately, there are plenty of ways for such levels of wetness to penetrate a home. These can include a leaky roof, undetected drippings from a pipe, or high moisture levels at or near the foundation of the house.

However, the moisture gets there, over time, it can permeate the wood that helps the fungus grow and breed. As it does, the fungus feeds on the wood, causing it to weaken and rot.

Despite this moisture-dependent structural breakdown, the affected wood can often feel dry and stiff to the touch.

To make matters worse, dry rot can spread through moisture-rich areas due to the release of airborne spores. So if your home’s crawl space is excessively humid, all the wood near your home’s foundation is at risk of dry rot.

This certainly isn’t a pleasant thought.

What Are the Signs of Dry Rot?

Unlike seemingly more extreme water damage caused by sudden pipe bursts, roof damage, or waterline leaks, dry rot often appears silently. But don’t let that fool you.

Under the right conditions, dry rot can spread quickly. It’s a fungi that is known to cause damage in areas of homes in, near, or around:

  • Windows & Doors
  • Basements & Crawl Spaces
  • Wet Rooms (Bathrooms, Kitchen, Laundry Room, or any room with a plumbing fixture)
  • Attics (Caused by roof damage or improper ventilation)
  • Outdoor Siding & Decks

Regardless of where it occurs, the signs you may be dealing with (or soon will be dealing with) dry rot are relatively obvious. They include:

Wet or Moist Areas: Areas that are humid or improperly ventilated are prime spots for dry rot, whether that’s under your home or in the attic. Also, if you find leaks or condensation anywhere in your home – around windows, under sinks, near pipes, etc., you should also consider the possibility of dry rot.

Damp Smells: As a fungi, dry rot – as it grows and spreads – puts off a relatively distinct smell often  described as damp, stale, or “mushroomy.” If you notice such smells in your home, be aware that dry rot (or, at the very least, water/moisture damage) may be the cause.

Swelling or Discoloration: If hidden around windowsills, in walls, along floorboards, etc., dry rot can cause areas of the interior to swell, discolor or become softer to the touch. Such signs can also show up outdoors, often near the bottom or along the seams of siding.

Wood Discoloration or Fungal Growth: An obvious sign to be sure, if you see this under a sink, in the attic, or under your home, you’re likely witnessing dry rot in action. In turn, this should cause you to spring into action.

What Do I Do?

If you suspect dry rot is eating away at the wood in, under, over, or around your house, don’t assume the damage is already done. You must limit the damage before it spreads any further.

This includes, of course, determining the source of your home’s excess moisture and correcting it, so your dry rot issue doesn’t return.

At SERVPRO of Bend, our mold removal team is trained and highly experienced in dry rot and mold remediation, applied microbial remediation, water damage restoration, and applied structural drying.

After taking care of your source of water or excess moisture, our team will:

  • Inspect and assess the damage
  • Contain the area using a negative air pressure system
  • Filter the air in the infected areas
  • Remove the fungi materials
  • Clean and restore the area and its contents

We provide these as both scheduled and emergency services. And, if you require these services as part of an insurance claim, know that while it’s OK for an insurance company to suggest a service provider, it’s your right to choose the mold remediation service provider you desire.

To learn more or schedule your initial mold assessment, call us at (541) 385-7044.

Intense Thunderstorms Bring Hail and Rain Followed by Record Heat

6/24/2021 (Permalink)

Central Oregon is prone to Thunderstorms but Wednesday brought hail that piled up as if it were a winter day in Bend, OR. 

 The slow moving storm began dumping up to an hour of torrential rain and hail that flooded streets, stripped leaves off trees and flattened bushes while dropping dime- to quarter-sized hail and sending small rivers of bark mulch or dirt flowing from yards.

The storm did, however, provide a temporary respite from recent high temperatures that is due to soar into potentially record-breaking over-100 temperatures for several days, starting this weekend and continuing through July 1st.

Residents of Central Oregon should be "Heat Aware," limiting outdoor activities. Some things to consider are drinking plenty of fluids, staying in an air-conditioned room, stay out of the direct sunlight, and check up on relatives and neighbors. Young children and pets should never be left unattended in vehicles under any circumstances.

Be Aware Of Overloading Circuits

6/16/2021 (Permalink)

Fire Damaged Power Box

With the summer months coming, it's easy to forget that overloading circuits with air conditioners and fans can be fatal if proper wattage is not regulated in your home.

Never overload electrical outlets and circuits. Overloaded electrical outlets, or circuits that supply power to several outlets, is a major cause of residential fires. Overloaded outlets and circuits carry too much electricity, which generates heat in undetectable amounts. The heat causes wear on the internal wiring system and can ignite a fire.

All wiring systems have circuit breakers or fuses that disconnect power when circuits become overloaded.

To prevent overloading, never plug more than two appliances into an outlet at once or use multiple extension cords or power strips to power devices. Use only outlets designed to handle multiple plugs.

Give special consideration to appliances that use 1,000 or more watts, such as air conditioners, refrigerators, hot plates, irons, microwave ovens, dishwashers, heaters, and deep fryers. Avoid plugging them into the same outlet or circuit. To use these appliances safely, know which outlets are connected to the same electrical circuit in your home. The electrical box in your home should be labeled to tell you where different circuits provide power. For devices, wattage requirements are listed in appliance manufacturer's instructions.

Begin a habit of regularly checking electrical cords and outlets. Fires that begin in these areas are difficult to detect, yet easy to prevent.

Spontaneous Combustion of Oil Soaked Rags

6/16/2021 (Permalink)

Now that winter is gone and summer is here, the lists of “Honey Do’s” are in full swing. One common item on a few of our lists is staining or re-staining a deck or wood items in the home.

Did you know that one of the most common type of Spontaneous Combustion fires are those caused by improperly disposing of oil and stain-soaked rags? Examples of these products are oil-based paints, stains, teak, linseed oils, varnishes, polyurethane, paint thinners, etc. Spontaneous combustion of oily rags occurs when rag or cloth is slowly heated to its ignition point through oxidation. The oils commonly used in oil-based paints and stains release heat as they dry. If the heat is not released in the air, it builds up. If this heat has no way to escape, like in a pile, the temperature will rise to a level high enough to ignite the oil and ignite the rag or cloth. The fire from this can spread quickly to other combustibles and cause great damage to your home or property.

Prevention of spontaneous combustion fires begins with good housekeeping. A clean work area can prevent a fire from spreading and getting bigger by not allowing the fire fuel to burn. Also understanding the potential for self-heating of rags soiled with oils such as linseed oil and turpentine is a key step in eliminating these preventable fires. To dispose of oily rags properly and safely,

 Use a metal container with a tight-fitting lid.  Place soiled and used rags inside and then fill the rest the way with water, seal the top and do not open it. This will prevent the oils from oxidizing, and thus keeping the rags from heating up and igniting.

If you have questions, feel free to call SERVPRO of Bend at 541-385-7044.

Does My Home Have a Mold Problem? It Can Happen, Even in Central Oregon

6/2/2021 (Permalink)

Central Oregon markets the region as a vacation destination, one that distinguishes itself from other, more lush parts of the state thanks to its drier, sunnier high-desert climate.

Yet, we at SERVPRO of Bend would like to warn local homeowners not to become complacent due to the relative dryness of this area, especially where water damage and mold are concerned.

While mold can be a more troubling issue for those living in the valley and in the coastal regions of Oregon, it also still exists in Central Oregon. 

Mold, after all, is everywhere. It exists as microscopic spores that flow through the air around us, both indoors and out. And, under the right conditions, mold spores can settle, colonize, thrive, and produce odors, allergens and irritants.

Where Does Mold Grow?

Homeowners who identify mold in their homes commonly find it growing in drywall and walls, in attics and crawl spaces, under leaky sinks, in showers, in ductwork … anywhere you may find a combination of moisture, cool temperatures and relative darkness.

A type of airborne fungus, mold can germinate in as few as 12 hours and start reproducing within one to two days. This process involves continually shooting microscopic spores into the air.

Mold can also produce an objectionable odor that can best be described as “musty.” In addition, it will typically damage surfaces on which it grows, whether that’s wood, drywall, grout or fabric.

What Are the Signs I Have Mold in My House?

If you know what you’re looking for or where to look, the most obvious sign you have mold in your home is that you simply see it. If you open a bathroom cupboard or duck down into your home's crawl space, for instance, mold will often stand out as dark spots in or around moist or humid environments.

If you’re not out looking for it, however, some of the top signs you may have a mold problem in your home include:

A Musty Odor: You may not notice this all throughout the home, but if you start to recognize a musty odor under sinks, in the shower, around duct vents, behind appliances, in the attic, etc., it may be time to start inspecting for mold.

Water Leaks/Damage: If you find water leaks that appear to have gone unnoticed for a period of time or uncover signs of water damage in your home, these are prime spots for mold. Thoroughly check these area(s) for growth.

Warping, Cracking or Peeling: Moisture that seeps into your drywall will nearly always result in the growth of mold. So, if you notice any bubbling, peels or cracks in your drywall that may indicate excess moisture, you’re likely to also have a mold problem.

What If I Find a Mold Issue?

The first thing to know is that mold spreads quickly, so even if you have a small mold problem today, it can become a major problem before you know it. So, don’t drag your feet. The quicker your response to a mold problem, the more limited the damage (and the costs of the damage) will be.

Secondly, wherever one might find mold in their homes, the one common denominator is moisture. To therefore remediate a home’s mold issue, one must also quickly address the causes and sources of said moisture, otherwise the mold is bound to come right back.

Here at SERVPRO of Bend, we are highly trained mold remediation specialists with advanced education in applied microbial remediation, water damage restoration, and applied structural drying.

After cutting off the source of water, moisture and/or humidity, our team will:

  • Inspect and assess the mold damage
  • Contain the area using a negative air pressure system
  • Filter the air in the infected areas
  • Remove the mold and any mold-infested materials
  • Clean and restore the area and its contents

We provide these as both scheduled and emergency services. And, if you require these services as part of an insurance claim, know that while it’s OK for an insurance company to suggest a service provider, it’s your right to choose the mold remediation service provider you desire.

To learn more or to schedule your initial mold assessment, call us at (541) 385-7044.

Top Commercial Plumbing Problems

3/3/2021 (Permalink)

Businesses and other commercial facilities experience leaks and clogs just like the rest of the world does. Though the pipes may be larger and the number of gallons flowing through the system greater, commercial facilities do experience water losses which in many cases can be much more extensive and costly. It can also sometimes be more difficult for business owners to diagnose problems with their plumbing as there are many more faucets, drains, pipes and other plumbing features compared to the average household. If you own a business or manage a commercial facility, here are the most common plumbing problems to keep an eye on:

1) Running Toilets

Everyone has came across a toilet that seems to always be running or even draining and filling at random intervals. Even when not visible to the eye, sometimes the quiet sound of water trickling can be heard coming from behind the toilet or inside the tank. One toilet doing this at your home is bad enough, but imagine a large business with 50 of them! If even a handful are running around the clock, you could be looking at increased water bills and a greater likelihood that something may fail with the toilet or plumbing in the future. Make sure to check the toilet components and call a commercial plumbing service if unsure. 

2) Silent Leaks

The scourge of large commercial facilities, silent leaks can be very hard to isolate or even notice in the first place. These are usually small to mid-sized leaks tucked somewhere below your building or inside you walls, and can go on for months before physical signs are seen. Make sure to keep a close eye on your water bill; unusual spikes or a gradual increase over time with no clear cause could be a sign that you have a leak somewhere in the system. Check those hard-to-see places yourself or call a plumber for a consultation!

3)Water Temperature Issues 

No one likes to have scalding-hot water blasted  onto their hands. Not many people like drinking warm water from a fountain, either. Water temperature problems can not only be an inconvenience to your workers or customers, but could even be dangerous in the case of water being too hot or far too cold. If you're experiencing fluctuating temperatures or insufficient heating, you may try flushing and cleaning your water heater to see if the issue resolves, and if not, plan to call a plumber to diagnose the problem. Scheduling routine maintenance is also a great idea. 

 4) Unpleasant Smells

Plumbing-related smells could be a large number of things. You may encounter a "musty" odor that could be indicative of mold or mildew (and most likely a leak), a similar smell related to standing stagnate water, or even a sewer smell coming from the bathroom or even other parts of the building. The sewer smell would rank as most concerning as it may be a sign there is a clog somewhere in the main line which could lead to a backup. If you're walking though your building and notice any new or strange odor, make sure to pay attention and call a plumber for an inspection. 

5) Low or High Water Pressure

Another problem that seems more prevalent than it needs to be, water pressure issues can affect a number of things and leave you more likely to experience a water loss. Also, if your business relies on water heavily for day-to-day operations, a drop in water pressure could even lead to a halt of production until the problem is addressed. Keep an eye on any changes and don't wait until the issue has become worse.

As always, if your business or commercial facility has experienced a water loss, please do not wait to call SERVPRO of Bend today for a consultation. From the smallest home to largest business, we are here to assist anytime, day or night, with any size disaster.

Mold: the Basic Facts

2/19/2021 (Permalink)

Mold is very common in both commercial and residential properties. You might not like hearing that, but it's true. Even if you can't see or smell it, the likelihood of there being some mold in your attic, basement, HVAC system or bathroom is relatively high. But don't panic: in most cases mold is not a hazard to your health or the building. Though that being said, it is always something to be aware of.

So how does mold enter your home or business? Mold can enter structures through doorways, windows, ventilation systems and any other open airways with ease. Likewise, mold spores can also attach themselves to your shoes or clothing, waiting for a nice damp spot where they can grow. Unfortunately for home owners, there are many materials that are perfect for this growth; cellulose materials like wallpaper and cardboard, ceiling tiles, wood paneling, and even carpets, drywall and upholstery can easily become slightly damp and begin to support a rapid spread of mold. 

Now that you know a little bit about mold and how it spreads, what can you do to stop it? Luckily, there are some simple things to take notice of: controlling the humidity, promptly fixing any leaks from the ceiling, windows or pipes, thoroughly cleaning and drying after water spills, and properly ventilating bathrooms, kitchens and laundry rooms are all easy ways to keep mold growth from starting. Also, in many cases, you may be able to catch a small patch of mold before it gets too large and even treat it yourself without having to hire a mold mitigation company who at that point would likely have to take more invasive measures. 

If you have a mold problem that has gotten out of hand, or are worried you may have mold but aren't sure, please contact SERVPRO of Bend today for a consultation!

Emergency Ready Profiles at No Cost

2/9/2021 (Permalink)

Don't wait until it's too late. Prepare yourself with an Emergency Ready Profile today!

Picture this: you're sitting at a desk in your home or business, reading the newspaper or returning emails, maybe wondering what you'll have for lunch or if you remembered to turn off the stove. Everything is how it always has been, and your window promises another perfect Central Oregon day to come, surely like all the others. This day, though, will be a very different one; and the violent geyser of water about to erupt from your ceiling is going to prove it. 

These situations (sudden water or fire losses) are not the time to decide what you are going to do. Thoughts such as "where is the water shut off" and "is that a gas or electric appliance" could cost you time, and in turn money, because every second the source is not dealt with additional damage is being done. To illustrate this point, I will relate to you a story that was told to me by a fellow SERVPRO employee from another part of the country. It underlines the need for a contingency plan in case of property damage, and how even if you yourself know the building like the back of you hand, some of your employees (or family members) may not.

In a different state in a past year, there was a privately-owned sporting goods company which carried everything from footwear to soccer balls, running apparel and exercise equipment. This smallish store, in keeping with many others around the country, employed younger high school and college students who were left to close up the shop at the end of the night after the owner had long since gone home. After locking the doors, a few of these employees thought it would be fun to toss a football back and forth across the now-empty retailer, which they did--sending the ball spiraling by the ceiling and eventually directly into an overhead fire-suppression spigot. Having broken the small glass vial normally designed to react to flames and heat, every single sprinkler in the store began to spew the grey-stinking water that had sat in the lines for years, beginning to soak almost every square foot of the building. The young employees, thoroughly distressed by this strange new turn of events, proceeded to do what is usually never advisable in these moments: they panicked. No one knew how to shut the water off. No one even knew who to call. With the fire alarm screaming and water continuing to pour from the ceiling, the employees decided to contact the fire department who by this time were most likely already on their way. At a loss of what else to do (no one seemed to want to call the owner), the employees exited the store and waited out front for the fire fighters to hopefully shut the water off as the contents continued to saturate behind them. The fire department did, with some difficultly, and almost an hour after the water began to fall the alarm finally stopped sounding and the indoor monsoon ceased. Not surprisingly, the entire stock of contents besides some metal items were a total loss, and the building itself had to be treated for extensive water damage.

As the blog photo states, 50% of all businesses who experience a disaster may never reopen. In some cases, such as the aforementioned sporting goods store, the reason for this is because the damage could not be stopped quickly and what would have only been a small cleanup soon became an emergency. If the employees had known how to shut the water off, the outcome would have been very different; thousands of fewer gallons of water would have made it from the pipes to the sales floor, and many of the contents could have been saved. With no plan in place, they never had a chance.

For these reasons, I wish to introduce you to the SERVPRO Emergency Ready Profile which we will happily provide to your home or bushiness at absolutely no cost or obligation. These function as contingency plans and list all of the important information when dealing with emergencies: a floor plan and exit strategy, water and gas shutoff locations, emergency contacts, building background and insurance information. These ERPs can be produced physically and added to existing contingency plans, or even shared digitally to every one of your employees cellular phones or computers. If a water or fire loss does occur (or any other kind of disaster) you, your employees, or family members, will be able to easily access this information and guide themselves to shutoffs or breaker boxes with provided photos and descriptions. This will help you keep your family or employees safe, and allow you the peace of mind of knowing that you would not act as a bottleneck in the event of an emergency when every second counts. 

If you would like to view an ERP, or have one completed for your home or business, please do not hesitate to call SERVPRO of Bend and ask for Brad. We can come to your location in a time that works for you, and will likely take less than half an hour. Be prepared for the worst and you'll easily deal with the rest! 

Hoarding Cleanup in Central Oregon

2/1/2021 (Permalink)

Not all cleaning jobs are created equal. Most might only take a handful of hours, maybe some light deodorization or disinfection after cleanup, and would never involve dump trailers, hazmat suits, respirators or bio-bags. Others fall into a different category, one where the amount of "junk" to be removed from the premises dwarfs all else, and the time required, along with the products used, could change significantly. "Hoarding" cases is what these are usually referred to, and SERVPRO of Bend has been taking care of them for over a decade.

In hoarding situations, when "a persistent difficulty discarding or parting with possessions because of a perceived need to save them" occurs, it can be overwhelming to know what to do or even where to start. Along with the possibility of there not being enough manpower to handle the large amount of contents, there may be other factors at play further complicating the job. Some of these may include: hazardous material, inhalation risks, bio-contamination, and a number of other things that may not be safe for anyone to undertake without the proper PPEs. A concern too, is what damage may have been done to the walls, floors and ceilings, by the sometimes years-worth of accumulated debris; a vacuum will likely not get the job done.

Another large concern, especially if the person is still living in the home, is what will happen to the contents removed from the premises. Although in many cases items may not be salvageable due to damage, we will try to do everything in our power to save valuables and anything else deemed to be rescued. Likewise, we always take every measure to save carpets and walls by treating and cleaning them rather than simply tearing them out. Much can be done with modern deodorizers and sanitizers when properly applied.

If you or someone you know would like an inspection and estimate, please do not hesitate to call SERVPRO of Bend today. We understand that this can sometimes be a sensitive situation, and daunting to say the least, but one that can be mitigated in an efficient and professional way, faster than you think.

Common Causes of Winter House Fires

12/15/2020 (Permalink)

As the weather continues to get darker and colder, we all begin to spend more and more time indoors, cranking the heater and using all of our appliances more frequently than we might during the summer. Residential structure fires are common year round, with some estimates placing the total at over 350,000 per year, resulting in 6 to 8 billion dollars in damage. The majority of these take place during the winter months.

A long list of things could potentially cause a fire in your home this season. Though some are more likely to than others. Here is a short list in no particular order outlining the most-common causes of winter house fires and ways you can prevent them this winter:

1) Dryer Lint

This innocuous fluff can really ruin your day if forgotten about for long enough. Allowing your dryer to accumulate lint without clearing it regularly could result in a fire, which it does for over 3000 homes each year. Remember to clear the lint between each use, and don't leave your home while your dryer is running-- especially if it's on the older side. 

2) Cooking

The activity of cooking a nice meal for your family by most estimates tops the list of winter house fire causes. It's easy to see why: multiple heat sources, the use of oil and gas, open flames... a large number of culprits could be to blame for a fire starting in the kitchen. Injuries are also significantly more likely in your kitchen! Stay safe this holiday season by practicing good kitchen management: keep all flammable materials away from heat sources and flames, make sure children and pets are at least 3 feet back from the oven or any other cooking appliance, never leave anything on the stove unattended (even for a little while), and be sure to keep you stove and oven free of grease to the best of your abilities.

3) Smoking

Americans aren't smoking at the rate they once did, but the smoking of cigars and cigarettes still cause many thousands of house fires every year. This is made worse during the winter months because smoking inside a warm home rather than out in the elements may sound tempting, though smoking indoors should be avoided at all costs; the highest number of deaths due to house fires occur in the family room, den or bedroom, which are places people will commonly choose to smoke. When smoking, always use a solid ashtray and never put your cigarette or cigar out in vegetation or anywhere else. Also, keep all smoking devices and lighters safely away from pets and children.

4) Space Heaters

Many people could not live without one of these. They make them in all sizes, some even small enough to sit on tables or desks, and all direct air though red-hot heated coils to warm the space around them. Unfortunately, these useful appliances are responsible for over 40 percent of all heating-related fires in the US, and their use and design have remained very static over the years. These fires are almost all caused by something being placed too close to the heating face or the unit tipping over-- make sure to place them only in open spaces and keep children and pets as far away as possible!

5) Lighting and Candles

These are another obvious cause of house fires during the winter, though should be mentioned again due to their widespread use. Lighting accounts for almost half of all Christmas tree fires (heaters and fireplaces making up a large portion of the other half) and candles commonly cause fires in every room of the house. You should always make sure to replace any damaged or old string lights, never use real candles to decorate your tree, and always try to not overload your outlets or power strips. Also, use LED lights when possible-- they use less energy and don't usually get as hot. 

Bonus) Power Outages

As I've written about in past blogs, you are more likely to lose power in winter rather than summer. But did you also know that you're more likely to experience a fire during a power outage too? When the lights go out, candles and generators are commonly used, both of which can cause fires if not properly situated in your home. Even worse, if a power outage is severe and goes on for a long period of time, people are more likely to turn to alternative heating methods (like burning paper and wood in a container indoors) which in many cases can cause fire or smoke damage. Having a plan in place in case of power loss could greatly help you and your family this winter.

Pay attention to your heat and light sources this season to keep your home off the list of thousands of home that go up in flames each and every year. If you do experience a fire loss during the holidays or time after, don't forget to call in a professional like SERVPRO of Bend. 

Preventing Ice Dams

12/2/2020 (Permalink)

If you've lived in a cold climate for more than a year, you have probably heard of the dreaded ice dam. An ice dam is an ice build-up on the eaves of sloped roofs of heated buildings that results from melting snow under a snow pack reaching the eave and freezing there. This can result in roof damage, where the water and ice can enter your home or business causing untold amounts of damage to the interior. Luckily, there are some things you can do to prevent this.

1)Add insulation

Adding additional insulation to an attic floor, or replacing outdated material, will greatly help keep the heat where it belongs and not seeping out into your home or the exterior. If you're not sure what to buy or how to install it, call a professional and ask for an inspection.

2)Proper ventilation

Paring ridge vents with soffit vents (and properly spacing them) can help circulate air beneath your roof and keep the heat from melting the snow and leading it to freeze on your eaves. Baffles on the eaves can also help keep airflow clear.

3)Exterior exhaust

Make sure to check that all indoor vents (dryer, bathroom, kitchen hood etc.) are all leading to the top of the roof or through the walls. If these are being routed though the soffit you could easily run into a situation that too much heat is reaching below the roof, in turn leading to melting and refreezing that ice dams like so much.

4)Close the hatch

An open attic hatch can lead to heat moving to areas you don't want it. Closing this hatch, and in many cases sealing it with weather strips or something similar, is an easy and effective way to guard against ice dams.

5)Install ice dam prevention products

When all else fails, or when your type of roof for whatever reason is hard to keep cold, the final step would be to install a product on your roof specifically designed to combat the formation of ice dams. More simply, these could be a type of adhesive water-and-ice barrier that you can run 3 to 6 feet up from your gutters, or if the problem is severe, installing heating lines near the eaves that will make it physically impossible for ice to form. You can commonly see these types of products on commercial buildings where the roof may be 3 stories up, but they are available for residential homes as well. Take a look at what is available and get a second opinion if you are unsure.

More than anything, you should keep a close eye on your roof. If you see large icicles forming, or lumps of ice near the eaves, you could be in danger of ice damming and the damage that can come along with it. Don't wait and hope it melts off-- it may not until the spring. 

Water, Fire, Mold and Bio Remediation in Redmond, Oregon

11/25/2020 (Permalink)

We are officially called Sevpro of Bend, but did you know we exclusively service Crook, Jefferson and Deschutes counties, and sometimes even do work out of state? It should come as no surprise then, that we spend a good amount of our time in the nearest city (and second-largest in Central Oregon) almost on a daily basis: Redmond, Oregon.

Incorporated some 6 years after Bend (1910), Redmond has continued to grow and develop like the rest of Central Oregon, adding more homes and businesses, school districts, and numerous commercial structures to accommodate the rapidly-growing population. Though with these new structures, along with aging originals, there is an increased likelihood that something will go wrong-- be it with fire, mold or water.

Although there may be other disaster restoration companies local to Redmond, take time to review your Bend options when looking to have work done on your home or business. Our office is located in Bend, though we have technicians who live in Redmond and a staff that can assist you as quickly and effectively as anything nearby. It's likely that you have driven north or south on 97 and seen us: bright-green tucks with an orange home logo and tagline "Like it never even happened." We are open and operating 24/7/365 and can assist with any size disaster.

SERVPRO of Bend has been locally owned and operated for over a decade and is the largest disaster restoration company in the area. Our team of local employees are highly trained and certified in the specific requirements for providing superior restoration and mitigation services, and adhere to all CDC guidelines during the pandemic. Please do not hesitate to call the office anytime, or dial (541) 480-5973 to speak to Brad directly if you have any questions or would like an estimate.

Commercial Reconstruction in Central Oregon

8/31/2020 (Permalink)

When thinking about the difference between commercial and residential reconstruction, the first and most obvious thing to notice would have to be the size. Though the end result of making it "Like it never even happened," is the same, reconstructing a movie theater, or a hospital, or basketball gym, could not be more different than the small residential home or mid-sized apartment. In one you may only need a couple technicians and a handful of equipment-- the work may be able to be completed in a number of days, and everything from start to finish is straightforward and typical. The other, though, could require a number of full teams, dozens of pieces of larger-scale industrial equipment, take weeks or even months, and be totally unique each and every time. Commercial restoration in Central Oregon is no different.

Taking the size aside, the next largest difference between commercial and residential restoration are the materials that need to be treated and "put back". Instead of your common drywall and wood related to residential reconstruction, with commercial you may see steel, glass, concrete and stone. What's more, the amount of these materials could quickly dwarf those used in a private residence or even a multi-family home. The spaces themselves may also hold very different pieces of machinery or electronics: with commercial you could see elevators or escalators, commercial HVAC equipment, and a number of other things that both require specialized maintenance and a much more forethought when it comes to having them restored and put back in place.

SERVPRO of Bend has a long history of working on commercial structures in Central Oregon and beyond. Just a number of months ago SERVPRO of Bend was called to a commercial water loss at a casino that had affected a number of floors and hundreds of square feet, needing to be dried out and then restored back to its prior condition. Along with dozens of laborers and technicians, the job required commercial generators, a very large number of air movers and dehumidifiers, and numerous material tests and specialty abatements to get the job done. Preparing the area was different from residential too, in that a large amount of containment tenting was required so that any dust or contaminates would not migrate to other parts of the unaffected building. As mentioned above, this also took weeks, and a and robust materials and personnel schedule was put in place so that the scope of work was followed exactly and progress was efficiently mapped and estimated. As was mentioned, in the end the result was the same: the damage was made to seem "Like it never even happened," and the property was returned to its preloss state on time and on budget.

If you or someone you know is experiencing a water or fire loss, contamination, or mold issue at your commercial facility, do not hesitate to call SERVPRO of Bend today to schedule your inspection and begin the process of getting things back to normal. There is no job too large or complex-- with SERVPRO of Bend on site you can rest easy knowing that they can handle the work at hand because they have seen it all before.   

Protect your Property from Hailstorms

8/13/2020 (Permalink)

Although not as common in Central Oregon as other parts of the country, hailstorms, especially those that come without warning, can cause thousands of dollars of damage to your home, property and vehicle. Even with insurance, no one wants to file a claim and go through the hassle of having to make repairs to their car or roof. What, then, should you do?

The easiest and best advice when it comes to hailstorms is an obvious one: keep an eye on the weather report. As mentioned above, this may not always help you, though even a small mention of "possible hail" should be enough for you to take note of what is outside your home and the condition of your roof and any other structures on your property. When it comes to your vehicle, the best way to keep it safe is unsurprisingly to keep it under a carport or in your garage. If this is not a possibility, you will have to go the route of protecting your vehicle in other ways which could range from parking it below thick tree cover, layering blankets and car mats across the top (plywood can be added for increased protection), or purchasing a specialized "hail cover" online. Anything that can dampen the impact will be helpful, especially when the hail reaches sizes of one inch in diameter or more.

As for your home or other structures on your property, making sure your roofs are in good shape is the only way to be sure you are protected. As you probably know, roofs can be made with a variety of materials from wood shingles to asphalt or tile. Although this is not a top of mind concern in Central Oregon, looking for materials with a "class 4" rating can save you a lot of trouble down the road if a large storm does appear, and have the added benefit of being longer-lasting under normal circumstances. Always make sure to not wait until your roof has any kind of damage-- a somewhat costly roof repair will always pale in comparison to having a collapse or gaps which could allow hail and anything else to fall on your appliances and furniture. 

Your landscaping may suffer to some degree though the evergreen trees of our area are very resilient when it comes to bad weather and impacts from hail. If you have a non-greenhouse flower bed or garden you can similarly purchase a small pop up canopy or try to construct something on your own that will act as a shield when the time comes. Though flowers can be replanted-- not so much your car. Keep these things in mind and that one freak hailstorm every few years will be of no worry to you! 

Watch Out for Oily Rags This Summer

8/5/2020 (Permalink)

This innocent rag could add much unneeded stress to your household projects this summer.

The higher temperatures and clear weather make for a great time to work around the house or in the yard. Among these common activities, re-staining a deck is certainly one of them. Both easy and cost-effective, staining a deck is a great way to add to the look of your new paint job or revive a decades-old deck that has been through one too many Central Oregon winters. But what if staining your deck could lead to you losing everything you own? It's possible-- and those oily rags you have piled nearby could be the unlikely culprit.

Oil-based stains are very common and can be found in thousands of stores across the country. Though something that is so common, and under normal circumstances very safe, can also become a massive fire danger if not stored properly while working outside. These oily rags can auto-ignite if they become too hot, leaving your deck and the home it's attached to in danger of going up in flames. To help you make sure this never happens, here is a list of things you can do to keep your outdoor staining projects safe this summer:

1)Never store oily rags in a pile. 

2)Store the rags in an airtight, metal container.

3) Always read the manufactures warnings on the product itself.  

4) If you must set a rag down, never let it sit too long.

5)For disposal, always contact your local waste management before simply throwing the rags away. 

In this situation, as in many others, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Do not wait until you have experienced a fire to take these easy steps and continue to enjoy your summer free of fire! 

6 Tips for Preventing Outdoor Fires

6/16/2020 (Permalink)

As summer approaches, people are spending more time outdoors in their yards. While enjoying the Central Oregon weather, this is a great opportunity to get rid of fire hazards outside your home and create a fire-safe space.

Here are some simple things that you can do that will greatly reduce the risk of fire around your home: 

1.) Place your grill three feet from siding, deck railings, and overhanging branches.

Things like siding, deck railings and overhanging branches are fire hazards and should not be within a three foot vicinity of your grill. All it takes is a single spark for any of these things to catch fire. 

2.) Keep fire pits, wood piles and propane tanks 5-30 feet from your home.

Fire pits, wood piles, and propane tanks are extremely flammable. You want to keep these a minimum of five feet (more if possible) from your home. This will provide a buffer zone between your the objects and your home if one were to catch fire.

3.) Only light a gas grill if the lid is open.

You want to make sure to always open the lid of the grill before lighting it. If you light it with the lid closed, this can create gas buildup that could cause an explosion.

4.) Trim any branches that are within 5 feet of your home.

It is a good rule of thumb to trim any branches that are within five feet of your home. This creates a buffer zone if one of the trees were to catch fire. 

5.) Clear leaves and branches from roofs, gutters, porches and decks.

Leaves and branches are flammable, and you don't want them accumulating on your roofs, gutters, porches or decks. You should periodically clear these areas throughout the summer. 

6.) Remove dead plants, leaves and branches within 10 feet of your home.

It is also good practice to remove any dead plants, leaves and branches within 10 feet of your home. This creates a defensible space from fires.

Contact Information:

If you have any questions about fire damage or creating a defensible space, please do not hesitate to call the SERVPRO of Bend office at 541-385-7044.

U.S. Fire Administration

What to Do if You Find Mold Caused by a Roof Leak

5/29/2020 (Permalink)

Roof leaks can cause water to slowly drip into your house. The most obvious problem with this is the possibility of water damage to the interior of your home. What many people don't realize is that this water damage can create the perfect environment for mold growth.

If the mold growth isn't too extensive, you can remove it yourself. You just want to make sure that you take all of the necessary steps to do it safely and effectively.

Step 1: Identify the Mold

Once you have the cause of the leak repaired to prevent any further damage, you should start investigating the affected areas for any signs of mold growth. These can often include a discoloration of the wall or ceiling, a musty aroma, or visible mold that is usually green, black, or brown.

In addition to physically seeing the mold, you can also monitor your health. Mold can cause people to have trouble breathing, fever, sore throat, headaches, chronic fatigue and more.

Step 2: Determine the Extent of the Mold Growth

Sometimes mold might not look bad on the surface, but oftentimes mold can also get in the drywall, insulation, floorboards, etc. You'll want to make sure you do a proper inspection of the affected area to know the whole extent of the mold growth.

Step 3: Remove the Mold

Mold can produce toxins, so if you plan to remove it yourself you should take the proper safety precautions. Firstly, make sure that you have personal protective equipment (PPE), such as gloves and a face mask. You should also wear long sleeve clothing to make sure your body is covered. 

Once you have all of your PPE on, you can use a fungicide on the affected area and scrape the mold from the surface it's on. Once you have removed as much as you can, let the area dry. You should check back on in a couple weeks to make sure that the mold hasn't grown back.

Contact Information:

If you have any questions about water or mold damage in your business or home, please do not hesitate to call the SERVPRO of Bend office at 541-385-7044.

Tips for Building a Defensible Space from Wildfires

5/1/2020 (Permalink)

If you live in an area that is prone to wildfires, it's important to have a defensible space around your home. If done correctly, this space should slow or even halt the spread of a wildfire, protecting your home and family. To start, you want to break your defensible space up into two zones, Zone 1 and Zone 2.

Zone 1

Zone 1 should be a circle around your home extending 30 feet. In this area, you'll want to remove any dead vegetation, leaves and pine needles. You should also do your best to trim any overhanging branches that are within ten feet from your chimney. 

Zone 2

Zone 2 should be a circle around your home extending 100 feet. The grass in this area show be mowed regularly to keep it 4 inches or shorter. You should also remove any fallen leaves, twigs, branches and pine cones. It is recommended that you don't have vegetation too close in this space either. There should be sufficient spacing both horizontally and vertically.

Contact Information:

If you have any questions about fire damage or creating a defensible space, please do not hesitate to call the SERVPRO of Bend office at 541-385-7044.


5 Most Common Household Fire Hazards

4/30/2020 (Permalink)

The majority of house fires that occur in the United States are preventable. You can take some simple measures that will go a long ways in preventing house fires in your home.

Here are the five most common household fire hazards with tips on how to prevent them:

1.) The use of candles.

Poor judgment when using candles is one of the most common causes of house fires. According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), there are an average of 25 candles fires per day.

If you use candles inside your home, there's a few simple preventative measures that you can take.

  • Make sure that you put out any candles before going to sleep.
  • Keep candles a minimum of one foot away from anything flammable.
  • Use candle holders that are sturdy and won't tip over easily.

2.) Being negligent while cooking.

Cooking is the number one cause of household fires. When cooking, it's important to never leave food unattended. You should keep flammable objects, such as towels, oven mitts, hot pads and any wooden cooking utensils away from heat sources. 

3.) The unsafe use of heating equipment.

According to the NFPA, space heaters account for over 30% of house fires and about 80% of all house fire deaths. Following a few rules of thumb can go a long way in preventing heating equipment fires in your home:

  • Keep anything flammable a minimum of three feet away from any portable heating equipment.
  • Turn off portable heaters before leaving a room or going to bed.
  • Do NOT use your oven as a heater. This actually releases carbon monoxide, which is poisonous and can sometimes be fatal. 

4.) Electrical equipment malfunctions.

Unfortunately, there's always the possibility for electrical equipment to malfunction. You should keep an eye on any electrical appliances that you use regularly for damaged cords. You should also make sure not to overload any outlets. Additionally, it may not be a bad idea to have an electrician do an annual checkup of your house's wiring.

5.) Failed dryer and washing machine maintenance.

Before using your dryer, make it a habit to clean your lint filter. This is a huge fire hazard that is often forgotten about. Additionally, you should periodically check the pipes for your washer and dryer and make sure they aren't restricted in any way. 

Contact Information:

If you have any questions about fire damage, smoke damage or making a fire escape plan, please do not hesitate to call the SERVPRO of Bend office at 541-385-7044.

4 Tips for Disinfecting Your Office

3/26/2020 (Permalink)

Keeping a clean office environment should be a priority for your company. This will prevent the spread of germs and keep people healthier year-round.

Here are four tips for disinfecting your office:

1.) Wipe surfaces in one direction.

If you wipe a surface one direction and then go back the opposite direction, you are going to spread the germs right back on the surface. A swift wipe in one direction will be most effective in removing germs from a surface.

2.) Make sure you're using the right chemicals.

Make sure you are using the right chemicals for disinfecting. Each cleaning product should be labeled with its intended purpose. 

3.) Make sure you get to all of the high-tough areas.

High-touch areas should be at the top of your list for disinfecting. This includes things such as chairs, stair railings, telephones, restroom surfaces and coffee pot handles/dispensers.

4.) Make handwashing a priority in your business.

Stressing the importance of handwashing in your office will go a long ways in preventing the unnecessary spread of germs.

Contact Information:

If you have any questions about commercial disinfecting, please do not hesitate to call the SERVPRO of Bend office at 541-385-7044.

4 Things You Need to Know Before Burning Yard Waste

2/26/2020 (Permalink)

Approximately 85% of wildfires in the United States are started accidentally by humans. One of the major causes of these wildfires is the improper burning of yard waste. Taking some simple and necessary precautions can greatly reduce the chances of causing a fire when doing this.

Here are four things that you need to know before burning yard waste:

1.) Never leave a fire unattended.

This may seem obvious to most people, but it's arguably the most important thing to remember when burning yard waste. All it takes is a split second for a fire to spark where it's not supposed to, so you want to monitor your fire at all times. 

2.) Always make sure fire is completely doused with water or smothered with dirt when you're finished.

You will want to make sure that your fire is completely put out before leaving it. A great way to do this is to douse it with water or smother it with dirt. 

3.) Don't burn anything highly flammable.

You want to be careful about what you are burning with your yard waste. Refrain from using any items that could be deemed highly flammable, such as paper or fabric that has been exposed to oil or gasoline. 

4.) Don't burn yard waste on a windy day.

If the wind is excessive, you may want to postpone your yard waste burning to a different day. If a spark gets caught in the wind wrong, it has the chance of igniting a wildfire. 

Contact Information:

If you have any questions about burning yard waste, please do not hesitate to call the SERVPRO of Bend office at 541-385-7044. We service all of Central Oregon, including Bend, Redmond, Sisters, Sunriver, Madras, La Pine, Prineville and all of the surrounding areas.

3 DIY Tips for Removing Unwanted Car Odors

2/11/2020 (Permalink)

Anybody that has had an unpleasant odor in their car before understands that it can be a huge nuisance. The first thing that you must do before removing any car odor is remove the source of the smell. If this isn't done, then you will only be able to temporarily remove any unwanted odors.

Here are a few DIY methods for deodorizing your vehicle:

1.) Baking Soda

Sprinkling baking soda on the interior of your car is a common way to remove odors. Baking soda absorbs most odors that it comes into contact with, making it a great tool for deodorization. Simply sprinkle the baking soda all over the seats, floor and trunk of your car and let it sit for a few hours. Once its had a chance to absorb any unusual smells, you can vacuum it up.

2.) Coffee

Using coffee grounds can also be a great way to remove odors from your vehicle. Like baking soda, simply sprinkle the grounds on the floors and seats of your car and let is sit for a few hours. Once it's given enough time to do its magic, vacuum it all up. If it's successful, you should have a subtle coffee smell in your car and any smelly odors should be gone. 

Disclaimer: If you don't like the smell of coffee, you should probably try one of the other two methods.

3.) Cat Litter

If you have some extra cat litter lying around, it could also be used to get rid of odors in your vehicle. Cat litter is designed to get rid of odors of urine and feces, but it can also be a great tool to get rid of other odors. Sprinkle the cat litter on the inside of your car and let it sit for a few hours. Once it has had time to absorb any smells, vacuum it up. You should be aware that cat litter can sometimes be difficult to vacuum, so you will want to be sure you have a high quality vacuum to use in order to do this.  

Contact Information:

If you have any questions about vehicle deodorization, please do not hesitate to call the SERVPRO of Bend office at 541-385-7044.

4 Ways to Detect Frozen Pipes

2/5/2020 (Permalink)

When the weather gets colder in the winter, pipes are at risk of freezing. Luckily, if you catch a frozen pipe early on, you can likely avoid having it burst and paying much higher cost for reparations.

Here are 4 ways that you can use to detect if your pipes may be frozen:

1.) Check the outside temperature.

Water doesn't freeze unless the temperature is 32°F or below. If the outside temperature is above this, then it is very unlikely that your pipes are frozen.

2.) Observe your pipes to see if there is frost on their exterior.

A more clear-cut way to see if your pipes may be frozen is to check if there is frost on their exterior. If you do find frost, you should take caution in turning on your faucets to avoid the possibility of your pipe bursting. 

3.) Test your faucets to see if there is running water.

If you turn on your faucet and very minimal or no water at all is coming out, then this may be a sign that the pipe responsible for the faucet is frozen. 

4.) Investigate if there are any strange odors coming from your faucets or drains.

Frozen pipes may create unusual smells that emanate from your faucets or drains. This is because when pipes are blocked by ice, the only direction for the odor to travel is back through these areas.

Contact Information:

If you have any questions about water damage, please do not hesitate to call the SERVPRO of Bend office at 541-385-7044. 

5 Tips for Winterizing Your Home

2/4/2020 (Permalink)

When winter comes around, electric bills can tend to go up. Taking some simple steps to winterize your home can help you save money and prevent unnecessary water and mold damage to your home.

Here are 5 tips that you can use to winterize your home this season:

1.) Clean out your gutters.

Having functional gutters is very important during the winter season. If water cannot drain properly from your roof, you may be at risk of forming icicles that can lead to ice dams. If you're unsure of what an ice dam is, please see our How to Recognize an Ice Dam article. 

2.) Monitor if your air filters need to be changed. 

You should periodically check your air filters in your central air and heating system to make sure that they're in good shape. If your air filters appear to be clogged, you might want to consider changing them out with new ones. This can improve the efficiency of your heating system and save you money on long and short-term maintenance costs.

3.) Add insulation film to your windows.

Insulation film may not look the most aesthetic, but it can make a big difference on keeping heat from leaking through your windows during the winter months. Research shows that window insulation film can keep as much as 70% of additional heat from escaping through your windows. With an amount this significant, it's definitely worth thinking about. 

4.) Use caulk to fill any gaps in windows, siding and doors.

Caulking any gaps in windows, siding and doors in your home is a very affordable option for winterizing your home that can greatly reduce the amount of heat loss that you experience during the winter season. 

5.) Use a programmable thermostat in your home.

Using a programmable thermostat can make a huge difference lowering your heating bill. With this type of thermostat, you can program it to have a lower temperature when you're not home or asleep. This can be really useful to people that work full-time.

Contact Information:

If you have any questions about water or mold damage, please do not hesitate to call the SERVPRO of Bend office at 541-385-7044. 

How to Recognize an Ice Dam

1/27/2020 (Permalink)

Water damage from ice dams is one of the most prevalent problems that we hear about in the winter. Ice dams form when water pools against overhanging icicles on the eaves of your roof. Over time, this water can seep into your roof and cause water damage to your walls and ceiling.

How to Recognize an Ice Dam

The first step in avoiding water damage from ice dams is being able to spot them. Finding an ice dam is not as hard as you may think. The first thing that you should look for is icicles hanging from the eaves of your roof. Even if no visible icicles are present, you should take a closer look and check if there is a layer of ice at the base of your roof. If you don't see either of these, then you may be in the clear. 

Other signs that you can look for include:

  • If your gutters are blocked/working properly.
  • If there are water stains on your walls and ceilings.

If you notice either of these, it may be worth having a professional come in to investigate to prevent any further damages.

If you would like to learn more about preventing ice dams, please see our 3 Tips for Preventing Ice Dams article.

Contact Information:

If you have any questions about water damage from ice dams, please do not hesitate to call the SERVPRO of Bend office at 541-385-7044.

4 Tips for Winter Fire Safety

1/7/2020 (Permalink)

House fires spike when the weather gets colder in the months of December and January. The leading cause of these house fires is the use of heating equipment. According to the National Fire Protection Association, the US Fire Department responds to an average of 50 thousand fires per year just from heating equipment.

Here are a few simple tips that you can follow to prevent house fires in your home this winter:

1.) Be mindful when using space heaters.

Space heaters account for more than two in five of house fires due to heating equipment (source: NFPA). Of these fires, 86% result in fatalities. The biggest cause of space heater fires is having them placed too close to flammable objects. In order to prevent this, you can follow the "3 feet" rule (see tip #2).

2.) Follow the "3 feet" rule.

A good rule of thumb is to keep anything that is flammable a minimum of three feet from any heating equipment, such as the furnace, fireplace, wood stove and portable space heaters. This will lessen the chance of anything accidentally catching fire. 

3.) Turn off all heating equipment before going to bed.

Most heating equipment fires do not occur overnight. However, the ones that do account for almost half of house fire fatalities from heating equipment. Make sure to turn off all heating equipment before going to bed. You're better off using an extra blanket or two than unnecessarily risking your life.

4.) Remember that ovens are not heaters.

Ovens should never be used for a source of heat. This is an inefficient way to heat your house, and it can actually cause carbon monoxide poisoning. Stick to using your oven to make food as it's designed to do. 

Contact Information:

If you have any questions about wintertime fire safety or fire damage, please do not hesitate to call the SERVPRO of Bend office at 541-385-7044. We service all of Central Oregon, including Bend, Redmond, Sisters, Sunriver, Madras, La Pine, Prineville and all of the surrounding areas.

How to Safely Remove Snow from Your Roof

1/2/2020 (Permalink)

Before removing snow from your roof, you'll want to be sure that you even have a valid reason to do so. If you're not sure how to determine this, please see our Should I Remove Snow From My Roof? article.

Before getting into the correct way of removing snow from your roof, here are a few things that you should NOT do to remove snow from your roof.

  1. If you don't feel fully comfortable removing large amounts of snow yourself, you should not attempt to do so.
  2. Do not use sharp tools. There are more effective ways to remove the snow, and this can actually damage your roof.
  3. This may seem obvious, but is worth noting: do not use a flame to melt the snow from your roof. This is a fire hazard.

Tips for Safely Removing Snow from Your Roof

  1. Start from the edge of your roof and work your way up from there.
  2. Use plastic snow removal tools designed for roofs. Avoid using metal tools, as these can cause damage to your roof.
  3. Try to avoid creating buildups of snow near any emergency exits, downspouts and ventilation openings.
  4. Once again, if you don't feel confident that you can safely remove the snow yourself, you should contact a professional to remove the snow for you. A roofing professional will have the necessary training and equipment to remove the snow efficiently and safely.

Contact Information:

We provide water damage restoration for roofs and home interior, no matter the size of the damage. If you have any questions about water damage, please do not hesitate to call the SERVPRO of Bend office at 541-385-7044. We service all of Central Oregon, including Bend, Redmond, Sisters, Sunriver, Madras, La Pine, Prineville and all of the surrounding areas.

Should I Remove Snow From My Roof?

12/31/2019 (Permalink)

Typically, you shouldn't remove snow from your roof unless it's completely necessary. This is usually in two scenarios:

  1. You think that your roof may collapse from the weight of the snow.
  2. You have a recurring problem with ice dams and are attempting to prevent them from forming. 

If you have to remove snow from your roof for one of these reasons, you'll want to make sure that you take the necessary precautions to do it safely and correctly.

When is Your Roof at Risk of Collapsing?

The majority of roof collapses from snow occur on flat roofs. This is due to the fact that snow has nowhere to go on a flat surface, so it continues to accumulate. Over time, this can lead to an exceedingly heavy weight of snow. This is when your roof can possibly be at risk of collapsing. If your roof has a small pitch (i.e sloped, but still relatively flat) you should also be cautious about snow buildup.

How to Test if There’s Too Much Snow

Fortunately, you don’t need to climb out on your roof with a ruler to measure the amount of snow. A simple test that you can do is try to open every door and window in your house. If they all open easily, then you’re likely good. However, if there’s any resistance then this could be an indicator that there’s an excessive amount of snow compressing the opening. This isn’t a sure sign that your roof is at risk for collapsing, but it is a sign that you should investigate the situation further.

When is it Necessary to Remove Snow to Prevent Ice Dams?

In most cases, you have a much higher risk of experiencing ice dams than roof collapses. There doesn’t always have to be a lot of snow for ice dams to form on your roof. A general rule of thumb is to remove snow from your roof if it exceeds six inches. You should never use a shovel to remove snow because it can be very dangerous. If you feel that you must remove the snow yourself, use a roof rake and get as much snow off the overhangs of your roof as you can.

Contact Information:

We provide water damage restoration for roofs and home interior, no matter the size of the damage. If you have any questions about water damage, please do not hesitate to call the SERVPRO of Bend office at 541-385-7044. We service all of Central Oregon, including Bend, Redmond, Sisters, Sunriver, Madras, La Pine, Prineville and all of the surrounding areas.

What is an Ice Dam?

12/9/2019 (Permalink)

What is an ice dam?

Simply put, an ice dam is an accumulation of ice on the eaves of a roof. When your attic is overheated, it can cause the snow on your roof to melt and pool against ice on the cold edge. You can usually tell when ice dams have formed by seeing dry spots on your roof and icicles overhanging the side.  

How are ice dams formed?

Ice dams are usually caused from attics being overheated from air leakage. The heat emanates through the attic to the roof and melts the snow on top. This melted snow then pools against the icicles on the eaves of the house with nowhere else to go. Over time, the water may seep into your house and cause water damage. 

For information on how to prevent ice dams, see our article 3 Tips for Preventing Ice Dams.

Contact Information:

If you have any questions about water damage from ice dams, please do not hesitate to call the SERVPRO of Bend office at 541-385-7044.

Houle Insulation

5 Tips for Preventing Freezing Pipes in Your Commercial Business

10/14/2019 (Permalink)

The pipes in a building may be an afterthought for many business owners, however they can be essential to a successful business operation. Frozen pipes can lead to pipes bursting and causing water damage to commercial property. In extreme cases, this can be expensive and disrupt  business. 

Here are five tips for preventing freezing pipes in your commercial business:

1.) Make sure that your building is properly insulated.

Even if pipes are located inside your building, they can still freeze if there isn't proper insulation. This includes areas that aren't accessed on a regular basis, such as crawl spaces, basements, attics, closets and warehouses. In addition to insulating your building, you should install weatherstripping around all the doors and windows to aid in keeping warm air inside. 

2.) Use pipe insulation sleeves on more exposed pipes.

You should use pipe insulation sleeves on any pipes that are more exposed to cold temperatures. This offers extra protection from freezing when the temperatures get low.

3.) Drip water through your faucets during periods of intense coldness.

When water is moving, it is much less likely to freeze. Letting your faucets drip during periods of extreme cold can be a great solution to prevent freezing pipes.

4.) Use a backup power source. 

Freezing temperatures can often lead to power outages. If this happens, it's good to have a backup power source to prevent the building from dropping to too cold of a temperature. 

5.) Use a building automation system when people are away from the building. 

It's to have some sort of building automation system to monitor the temperature of your building when nobody is there. This can notify you if the building temperature drops drastically unexpectedly. 

Contact Information:

If you have any questions about water or mold damage, please do not hesitate to call the SERVPRO of Bend office at 541-385-7044.

Commercial Trade Services

How to Handle Water Damage Based on Water Type

10/8/2019 (Permalink)

If you have a commercial or residential building that experiences water damage, knowing what type of water is causing the problem is essential to properly address the situation. 

Three Types of Water

  • Clean water: This would be described as water from burst pipes or rainwater. This type of water would not be considered a safety hazard for cleaning.
  • Gray water: This water would be considered contaminated to some extent. Clean water can turn into gray water from bacteria growth if it is left untreated for too long. 
  • Black water: This water is filled with bacteria, chemicals and fungi, and it is considered highly contaminated and a safety hazard to clean. This water is typically caused by sewage backups.

How to React to Clean Water Damage

Your first reaction when experiencing "clean" water damage is shutting off the source of the water. This can be done by turning off your main water shut-off valve. For more information on how to do this, see our article How to Find & Use Your Water Shut-Off Valve. Once the water is shut off, do your best to extract as much water as possible. You should remove any items that are exposed to moisture to prevent them from being further damaged. Avoid leaving books or magazines in the water damaged zone because the ink can cause staining.

How to React to Contaminated Water Damage

You should not attempt to clean contaminated water by yourself because it can be hazardous to your health. Do your best to avoid the contaminated water if you can. It is recommended that you shut off all fans and call a water cleanup specialist to handle the job as soon as possible. 

Contact Information:

If you have any questions about water or mold damage, please do not hesitate to call the SERVPRO of Bend office at 541-385-7044.

5 Tips to Clean Your Dryer

9/11/2019 (Permalink)

Almost 3,000 dryer fires are reported each year in the United States. These fires are the cause of approximately five deaths, 100 injuries and $35 million in property loss damages. The leading cause of dryer fires is the failure to clean the dryer. Setting aside just a few minutes can reduce your risk of your dryer setting fire tremendously. 

Here are some tips on how to clean your dryer properly:

1.) Clean your lint screen before every load of laundry.

Get in the habit of cleaning your lint screen before every load of laundry. Even if there's minimal lint on the screen, you should still clean it all off before starting each load of laundry.

2.) Make sure that your vent hose is in good condition. 

Check your vent hose to make sure that it's in good condition and not crushed or bent. Ideally, you want to make the vent hose as short as possible to avoid this. If you have a white plastic vent hose, you should dispose of it and get an aluminum vent hose as soon as possible. These vent hoses are no longer allowed to be sold because they are a safety hazard. 

3.) Clean your vent line on a regular basis. 

You should regularly be checking your vent line to make sure there isn't any lint creating blockage (clogged lint is a big fire hazard). If you can't get the lint out yourself, you can call a professional to come in and clean it for you.

4.) Make sure that there's no lint inside your dryer.

You should also be checking the inside of your dryer for lint on a regular basis. Using a hand vacuum is a great way to clean lint out of the inside of your dryer. 

5.) Keep the area surrounding your dryer free of any flammable materials. 

If you do experience a dryer fire, you'll want to make sure that there isn't any fuel for the fire around your dryer. This includes clothing, cleaning products and boxes. 

Contact Information: 

If you have any questions about fire or smoke damage, please do not hesitate to call the SERVPRO of Bend office at 541-385-7044.

U.S. Fire Administration

How to Clean Your Gutter

9/4/2019 (Permalink)

Cleaning out gutters is usually not at the top of the list of priorities for most homeowners. Many people do not realize that clogged gutters can lead to a multitude of problems, including property foundation damage, wood damage, landscape damage and ice dams. It is recommended that you clean your gutters at least twice per year. 

Here are a few steps you can do to ensure that your gutters are clean and functional: 

1.) Start cleaning at the downspout of the gutter.

If your gutter has horizontal extension pipes, you can remove them to clean the downspout. You can check if the downspout is flowing by shooting water from a hose down it. If the water isn't coming out on the other side then there is likely some debris blocking the path of the downspout.

2.) Remove any debris trapped in the gutter (i.e leaves, sticks, etc.) using your hands or a trowel. 

Use your hands to scoop out any debris trapped in your gutter. If you don't want to use your hands, you can also use a gardening trowel to scoop out the debris.

3.) Flush the gutter with a hose. You can also use a gutter-cleaning attachment on the hose if the water doesn't drain.

A common method to clean the downspout of a gutter is to use a hose to flush out any debris that may be blocking the gutter. If this does not work, you can purchase tools (such as a plumber's snake) into the gutter and turn the crank to loosen up the blockage of debris.

Contact Information:

If you have any questions about inspecting or cleaning your gutter, please do not hesitate to call the SERVPRO of Bend office at 541-385-7044.


Angie's List

5 Tips for Maintaining a Healthy Roof

8/8/2019 (Permalink)

Most homeowners know that repairing or replacing a roof can be quite expensive. That is why it's important to keep in mind things you can do to maintain the quality of your roof. If you are willing to set aside only a couple hours here and there each month, you can end up saving yourself a large amount of money. 

Below are a handful of different ways to maintain a healthy roof:

1.) Keep an eye on your shingles.

A lot of roof problems can be traced back to damaged or missing shingles. If you set aside a little bit of time to clean the dirt from your shingles every few months, this can greatly improve the lifespan of your roof. If you see that shingles are damaged or missing, you should repair it as quickly as you can. Replacing a single shingle is inexpensive and could save you a lot of money down the line. 

2.) Make sure your roof sealant isn't cracked or worn. 

You should check your roof sealant periodically and make sure that it isn't cracked or worn. If you see any areas where your sealant is cracking or wearing off, you will need to remove it completely and replace the affected area.

3.) Clean your gutters.

Cleaning your gutters periodically throughout the year is essential to preventing damage to your roof. Clogged gutters can cause serious damage from water accumulating and eventually seeping underneath your roof. This can eventually soak into the walls and ceilings of your home. 

4.) Trim branches overhanging your roof. 

If you have any trees near your home, you should make sure that none of the branches have grown to overhang your roof. If any branches are overhanging, you should trim them to prevent leaves from falling on the roof. Leaves retain a lot of water, so over time they can end up rotting your tiles. 

5.) Inspect your roof for rust.

If your roof has any metal, you will want to check for rust. If you notice any rust forming, you can use wire-brush to remove it. Once you are finished brushing the rust off, you can prime the area and paint it to prevent it from re-forming. 

Contact Information: 

If you have any questions about your roof, please do not hesitate to call the SERVPRO of Bend office at 541-385-7044.


6 Ways to Increase the Lifespan of Your Carpet

7/31/2019 (Permalink)

Most home and business owners know that carpet can be very expensive. That is why it’s important that you take care of your carpet to increase its lifespan and save money long-term. If you get into the right habits, you can preserve your carpet with minimal effort.

1.) Take your shoes off before walking on your carpet.

If you really want to keep your carpet looking new, you'll want to avoid walking on it with your shoes on. Even if you think that your shoes are clean, they are more than likely tracking dirt on your carpet. Over time, this will accumulate and potentially cause discoloration to your carpet. Additionally, the hard soles of your shoes will wear down your carpets much faster.

2.) Before vacuuming, sprinkle baking soda.

Sprinkling baking soda on your carpet is a simple trick that will keep your carpet smelling fresh and new. All you have to do is sprinkle a very light layer on your carpet and let it settle for a few minutes. After it has settled, simply vacuum your carpet as you would normally. 

3.) Make a habit of vacuuming on a regular basis.

Dirt gets caught in carpet very easily. If it’s left for a long period of time, it can start to cause damage to your carpet. It is good to get in a habit of cleaning your carpet regularly to avoid letting dirt stay on it for extended periods of time. Something as simple as vacuuming once a week will greatly increase the lifespan of your carpet.

4.) Treat carpet stains immediately.

Unfortunately, accidents happen and sometimes we stain our carpets. It’s important that you take care of stains as soon as you notice them to avoid letting the stains soak into your carpet. Apply a carpet cleaner to the stained area until your carpet is dry then vacuum.

5.) Do not rub stains.

Although common sense might tell you to rub stains with carpet cleaner, this actually can make matters worse. Rubbing stains will only rub the stain deeper into your carpet. It is recommended that you stick with a blotting motion when treating stains.

6.) Have your carpet cleaned professionally once or twice per year.

It is recommended to have carpets cleaned at least twice per year. Although this may seem pricey, it will greatly increase the lifespan of your carpet. In the long-run, this will save you money.

Contact Information:

If you have any questions about carpet cleaning, please do not hesitate to call the SERVPRO of Bend office at 541-385-7044.


7 Tips To Use Fireworks Safely

6/25/2019 (Permalink)

The Fourth of July is a day to celebrate the independence of our great nation with tasty foods, family and friends. A common part of celebrating includes shooting off fireworks. Although fireworks can be very appealing to look at, they account for thousands of fires and injuries each year. A vast majority of these fireworks accidents occur on and around July 4th.

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) reports that fireworks start an average of 18,500 fires annually. These fires cause an average of 3 deaths, 40 injuries and over $40 million in property damages each year. Over one-third of firework related injuries occur to children below the age of 15.

The NFPA advises against the use of consumer fireworks due to the large amount of fires and injuries they cause. However, if you, your friends or family are planning on using fireworks this holiday, it’s important that you understand the proper safety measures. There are many things that you can do to drastically reduce the chances of fireworks-related fires and injuries.

1.) Avoid buying fireworks packaged in brown paper.

Fireworks packaged in brown paper are made for professional displays. Due to this, it can be very dangerous when used by the average consumer. If you want to see these types fireworks, it’s best to go to your local professional firework display.

2.) Only use fireworks in a clear, open area.

Fireworks should only be used in clear, open areas. Make sure that there are not any buildings, vehicles or shrubbery nearby where you are lighting your fireworks. Additionally, avoid setting off fireworks next to dry brush or grass, as they are highly flammable.

3.) Back up a safe distance as soon as you ignite your fireworks.

It is recommended that you back up 15-25 feet after lighting “category 2” fireworks (most consumer fireworks are category 2 fireworks). You should always check to see what category your fireworks are before lighting them. Any fireworks above category 2 require a further distance after being lit and often additional safety measures.

4.) Make sure children are always supervised by an adult.

A large portion of fireworks-related injuries and fires occur from children below the age of 15. In many cases, this happens because there was no adult supervision present. It’s important that your children understand the proper safety precautions when using fireworks and that an adult is always there to monitor in case of an accident.

5.) Never point or throw fireworks at another person.

This may seem obvious, yet it happens more often than you would think. Pointing or throwing fireworks at someone can result in serious injury.

6.) Have a bucket of water or garden hose nearby.

It’s important that there is a bucket of water or garden hose nearby when using fireworks in case a fire is started. Since fires spread at such a rapid pace, it’s essential that they are put out quickly. Additionally, used fireworks should be doused in water before they are put in the trash.

7.) Never try to re-light or pick up fireworks that haven’t fully ignited.

You should never pick up a firework that hasn’t fully ignited. There’s a possibility that the firework will ignite and blow up in your hand and cause serious injury.

Contact Information:

If you have any questions about fire or smoke damage, please do not hesitate to call the SERVPRO of Bend office at 541-385-7044.

National Fire Prevention Association
All Pro Dad

5 Things You Can Do To Prevent Kitchen Fires

6/19/2019 (Permalink)

Sadly, many house fires that occur are preventable. As reported by the United States Fire Administration, cooking fires are the leading cause of house fires in the United States with more than 188,000 recorded each year. These fires are the cause of an annual average of 195 deaths, 3,800 injuries, and $463 million in property damages. As a homeowner, taking preventative actions can greatly decrease the chances of a fire in your home. 

1.) Test your smoke alarms.

Smoke detectors, like all technology, are fallible and require maintenance. The U.S. Fire Administration (USFA) recommends that homeowners test their smoke detectors at least once per month. It is also recommended that the batteries in the smoke detectors are replaced at least once or twice per year. 

In order to test your smoke alarms, simply press and hold the "test" button located directly on the detector. As you hold your finger on the button, the siren will sound throughout your house. You should have a friend or family member stand as far away from the detector as possible to ensure that you can hear the alarm everywhere in the house. If they cannot hear the alarm, you’ll likely need additional detectors until the sirens reach all areas of the house.

2.) Don't leave hot cooking surfaces unattended.

Leaving hot cooking surfaces unattended accounts for approximately 40% of all cooking fires. If you have to leave the kitchen while you are cooking, you should turn off the oven or stove and remove any pots or pans from heated surfaces.

3.) Don't leave anything flammable near the stove or oven.

It is important that you don’t leave any flammable objects near your stove and oven while they are in use. This includes towels, oven mitts, cords, cookbooks and curtains. These objects can easily set fire if they accidentally are left too close to a burner.

4.) If you have children, create a child-free zone while cooking.

If you are cooking on the stove, use the back burners if possible. Additionally, make sure that any handles are turned toward the back of the stove.

5.) Close the oven door if your oven catches on fire.

A common misconception that people have is they should take matters into their own hands to put an oven fire out. In reality, if your oven catches fire the best thing that you can do is simply close the oven door. This will allow the fire to go out by itself and prevent it from spreading outside of your oven to the rest of your house.

Contact Information:

If you have any questions about fire or smoke damage, please do not hesitate to call the SERVPRO of Bend office at 541-385-7044.

National Fire Protection Association

SERVPRO of Bend Honors Those Who Sacrifice

6/6/2019 (Permalink)

I ran into a very special person on this June 6, 2019. Richard is a Pearl Harbor survivor and proud American. While shopping, I saw Richard's hat displaying his service. As a proud son, grandson and father of those who served or are serving in our military, I went up to Richard and thanked him. 

That conversation turned into 15 minutes of him telling me about his service and I telling him about my family members who served or are serving.

On this very special day, thank you Grandpa for being at D-Day and thank you Richard for your kind demeanor, service to this country and being a great American.

Make Sure That Your Business Is Prepared

6/4/2019 (Permalink)

This commercial kitchen fire happened to a local business.

50% of businesses never reopen after suffering a disaster. This may seem like an alarming percentage to many people, but it is a reality. The main reason that this is the case is because business owners do not have a plan in the event that their property experiences a disaster. 

Disasters can strike at the most unexpected times, so it's good to always be prepared. SERVPRO of Bend offers a document called an Emergency Ready Profile to local businesses in Central Oregon. This document highlights all of the places in the building that are important in the event of a disaster (i.e water, gas, electricity, etc.). If your building experiences a disaster, you can quickly go to the document and figure out where you need to go to resolve the problem. In addition, you have our phone number on hand to call us to the scene. Since we are available 24/7, we will be there as soon as we can no matter what time of the day. 

Signs of Failing Gutters after an Ice Dam in Central Oregon

3/26/2019 (Permalink)

After this Winters ice damming, it’s important to keep the maintenance up on your Central Oregon home.

It is important to keep your gutters clean and free of debris. This might seem like a basic task, and one that not a lot of people like to do. However, not doing so can create significant issues for your property if not taken care of. From roof leaks to problems with the foundation of your home, clogged gutters can lead to costly repairs if they are left untreated. 

If you are seeing signs such as shingles with curled up ends, missing shingles, gutters which are pulling away from your home these are clear warning signs that your gutters are failing. When water damage is apparent on your home, you need water cleanup services from SERVPRO of Bend.

SERVPRO of Bend can take a look at your home to see where the damage is and how extensive it is, plus clean it up.  

Cracks in your gutters lead to water leakage and water damage to your home. If you do not deal with it right away, this leads to larger cracks and more expensive damages.

If you have any questions regarding roof damage or water intrusion to your home, feel free to call SERVPRO of Bend at 541-385-7044.

Asbestos Testing on Every Property 2004 and Older

3/13/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Bend's priority is making sure that our customers and our team members are safe, especially with hazardous or potentially hazardous materials.

In Oregon, homes constructed prior to 2004 may contain asbestos in their walls, ceilings, floors, roofs, siding, HVAC systems, insulation, pipes and more. Homes and buildings constructed prior to 2004 need to be tested for asbestos. Asbestos is a natural occurring mineral that was used extensively in the U.S. in many construction materials. Use has decreased significantly over the years, but there are still building materials produced today that contain asbestos.

When asbestos-containing material is disturbed and improperly handled, tiny hazardous fibers are released into the air and may cause lung cancer and other illnesses.  It’s important that asbestos is properly tested before any material is removed. 

In accordance with Oregon law, we test every material that is in a home that has been built in 2004 or older prior to removing it.

If you have questions about asbestos or any other hazardous material, feel free to give SERVPRO of Bend a call at (541)385-7044.

We Provide an Emergency Readiness Profile For FREE

3/13/2019 (Permalink)

Many commercial property owners don't realize that SERVPRO of Bend provides an Emergency Readiness Profile (ERP) for FREE.

We at SERVPRO of Bend know that the best time of planning for catastrophic events are not when the event happens, but before anything happens. Nobody plans on having a disaster but they can always build a plan in case one happens. Many property owners that we have talked to about ERP’s are surprised to realize that they don’t have an “official” plan when it comes to, “What would happen if…”

It isn’t uncommon when asked, that many commercial property owners don’t know where their main water shut off is. It is very important to know where a water shutoff and other primary components of the building are located. Fortunately, the SERVPRO Emergency Readiness Profile (ERP) that SERVPRO of Bend provides locates and documents these important components for FREE.   

This is where an ERP is a huge advantage and compliment to a business’s Disaster Planning Program. 

While other restoration companies charge for this valuable service, We at SERVPRO of Bend do it for FREE.

If you have questions or would like to schedule an Emergency Readiness Profile at your commercial property, don't hesitate giving us a call at 541-385-7044.

Providing Information to combat Ice Dams

3/12/2019 (Permalink)

Protect your investment by preventing dangerous ice dams and icicles Summit Ice Melt Systems


SERVPRO of Bend has been providing preventative maintenance information to Central Oregonians for over 12 years. Our team are local professionals who understand the variety of weather changes that Central Oregon experiences. 

During the winter months, such as right now, ice dams can begin to wreak havoc on residential and commercial properties. Ice dams are a natural occurrence in snow country. They form when certain conditions co-exist. During these conditions, dangerous icicle and heavy ice formations develop.

To combat ice dams, it is important to remove snow build up from eaves and rain gutters. Too much build up of ice on the edge of the eaves will freeze, causing a dam of ice. When snow located on the upper are of the roof, where it is exposed to heat melts, it has nowhere to go but down. This in turn, could create water damage.

If you feel you have damage from an ice dam, don't hesitate to call SERVPRO of Bend at 541-385-7044.

Mold Staining

3/7/2019 (Permalink)

It isn't uncommon in Central Oregon to find that a lot of homes suffer from poor ventilation in the attic space, that can result in secondary damage, such as microbial growth or staining from microbial growth.

SERVPRO of Bend was called out to this residential property in Redmond, OR when the owner noticed that one side of their home had clear plywood on the inside of the roof material but the north facing side of the interior plywood was covered in black.

SERVPRO of Bend technicians went into the attic and metered the north side of the roof material and found that it was not metering wet. However, the attic space was stuffy, and it felt as if there was not adequate ventilation.

After calling a roofer, the homeowner realized that the attic needed more vents. Once the roofer completed the installation of new vents, SERVPRO of Bend was called back to remove the staining.

After spraying the affected area, the result was a clean, almost new looking plywood on the north facing side of attic interior.  

Bend Fire Department roof advice, fire hydrant clearing

3/6/2019 (Permalink)

Weather forecasts are calling for several more inches of snow Tuesday night and Wednesday morning, followed by some rain, and then freezing temperatures on Wednesday night. These conditions have the potential to add a significant amount of weight to snow-covered roofs.

If possible, Bend Fire officials say, try to remove some of the existing snow from the roof, remembering that the roof surface will be quite slippery.

In addition, with possible rain and some melting, all that water has to go somewhere. The most helpful thing people can do is to clear a channel to the storm drain on your block, so the water on the street can drain off. 

If the temperatures rise and the rain materializes, the roads may become quite slushy, which can change the driving characteristics quickly and dramatically. Drive with extreme caution through deep slush.

Also, please do not forget that lonely red hydrant standing out there in the snow. Get a neighbor or two to help dig the snow out from around it, starting at the street. If it is needed, the best place for firefighters is at the end of a hose line, knocking down the fire, rather than shoveling out the hydrant.

Gov. Brown declares 10-county winter storm emergency, including Deschutes County

3/1/2019 (Permalink)

Gov. Kate Brown on Thursday declared a state of emergency in 10 Oregon counties, including Deschutes, due to severe winter storm conditions.

The counties included are: Coos, Curry, Deschutes, Douglas, Jackson, Josephine, Klamath, Lane, Linn, and Marion.

The declaration comes at the request of local officials and is based on the recommendations of the Oregon Office of Emergency Management.

"As our state and local authorities continue to work hard to clear roads, reconnect power and ensure the safety of the community, this declaration will provide additional resources and the potential for federal highway system funds in the future," Brown said.

“I urge all Oregonians to follow the recommendations of local authorities, and avoid travel while ODOT crews work on the roads and restore core services."

The governor's declaration directs OEM to coordinate the deployment of the Oregon Department of Transportation, Oregon State Police and the Oregon National Guard to support local communities as needed.

source: KTVZ 21

Cleaning Excess Snow From Your Roof

3/1/2019 (Permalink)

Ice dams can’t form without snow.  If you’re able to prevent ice dams, you’re far more likely to prevent your roof from leaking and damaging the inside of your home.

Another reason roof snow removal is so important is that it’s a good idea to keep all that excess weight off your roof.  As a rule of thumb, one square-foot of snow that’s one-inch in depth weighs about a pound.  If your roof has 12 inches of snow on it, that could easily amount to thousands of pounds of stress on your roof.

  That’s not even counting the weight of any ice dams that may form as a result of leaving the snow on your roof; just one cubic foot of ice weighs 57 pounds, and a typical ice dam can weigh thousands of pounds.  Minimizing the stress placed on your roof is a great way to minimize the risk of leaking and cave-ins (the latter of which occur more frequently than you might think).

If you have questions about snow removal or ice dams, feel free to call SERVPRO of Bend 541-385-7044.

SERVPRO of Bend wants to Thank our Crew

2/26/2019 (Permalink)

We wanted to thank our crew for their team effort in assisting with the digging out our vehicles from a record snow fall.

Despite having the area snowplowed, it was necessary for out team to dig out our service vehicles from 3 feet of snow.

This allows us to be ready when the need comes for us to help our customers with any level of Emergency Services. Our vehicles are stocked and ready for Whatever comes our way.

Redmond Oregon Airport flights canceled until Wednesday

2/26/2019 (Permalink)

Redmond Municipal Airport announced Tuesday that its reopening has been pushed back to Wednesday morning after heavy snowfall damaged a navigational aid system.

RDM officials had intended to reopen at noon Tuesday after a day-long closure. But airport officials said the Instrument Landing System (ILS), equipment owned and operated by the Federal Aviation Administration "is currently inoperable due to snow damage."

The ILS allows pilots to land aircraft in weather conditions that are not under Visual Flight Rules (VFR). Current winter storms require use of the ILS for landing at RDM.

The FAA plans to have the ILS in operation by 9 a.m. Wednesday -- weather permitting.

While there are no arriving or departing flights, RDM’s commercial air carrier passenger terminal is open. 

The airport recommended passengers contact their air carrier directly for flight information.

source: News Channel 21

Extreme Cold Weather Spreads East

2/1/2019 (Permalink)

Midwesterners trudged ahead Thursday into a familiar, grim reality: temperatures well below zero, schools and businesses closed, stern warnings to wear extra layers or, better yet, just stay indoors.

The polar vortex that arrived earlier this week has for days disrupted life across an entire region. Deaths and injuries were reported. Decades-old records fell. And, for one more day, even stepping outside remained a painful, risky experience.

But the forecast finally suggested relief ahead. By Thursday night, temperatures across much of the Midwest were expected to poke above zero. By the end of the weekend, meteorologists predicted as much as a 70- or 80-degree swing, with balmy-for-February readings in the 40s or 50s and rain instead of snow.

Still, risks remained. A band of snow complicated travel on Thursday, and in the Northeast, officials warned of their own cold wave, with heavy snow in some places and subzero wind chills in others.

source: New York Times

Garage Ceiling Damage, Bend Oregon

1/14/2019 (Permalink)

A water line above the garage in this Bend, Oregon home broke, causing water to run for a few days, damaging the garage ceiling below.

SERVPRO of Bend was called out to this homeowners house when they discovered that the ceiling in their garage had fallen and the debris damaged a car that was being stored in the home.

SERVPRO of Bend's water team went out to the site and found that the cold water line that went above the garage had burst, causing large amounts of water to leak onto the ceiling below. The weight of the insulation within the structure soaked up the water. The insulation was like a sponge and created a massive amount of extra weight for the drywall below. This caused the drywall in ceiling to collapse.

SERVPRO of Bend technicians cleaned up the damage and were able to dry the affected material.

Storm Watch for California

1/14/2019 (Permalink)

According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Agency (NOAA), A deep Pacific trough off the West Coast will remain in place over the next few days with a frontal boundary approaching southern California Monday night, and additional shortwave impulses arriving through Tuesday.

The result will be widespread rain with some localized flooding issues possible for the coastal mountain ranges.  Heavy snow is likely for the
Sierra Nevada and Siskiyou mountains of California, with amounts possibly exceeding a foot at the highest elevations.

This is especially critical for those areas such as Woolsey, who in the past year have suffered from wildfires. The excessive amount of precipitation added to an already loose soil base has already caused some mud slides on the Pacific Coast Highway. 

source: NOAA.org

Water Damage to Bend Area Home

1/10/2019 (Permalink)

When this Bend, Oregon home had a bathroom flood, the homeowner called SERVPRO of Bend to come out and assist with the damage.

Technicians from SERVPRO of Bend went out to find that a pipe from under the bathroom sink had broke and water flooded the bathroom and an adjacent bedroom.

Due to the amount of time that the water was running, SERVPRO of Bend had to remove the carpet and pad in the bedroom while also removing the damaged drywall.

After a few days of drying the affected area, SERVPRO of Bend's structural team was able to come in and start repairing the damaged areas.

Contact Information

If you have any questions about water damage, please do not hesitate to call the SERVPRO of Bend office at 541-385-7044.

Bathroom Leak in Redmond, Oregon

1/2/2019 (Permalink)

This master bathroom in Redmond, Oregon flooded when the owner found that the angle stop had broken on the second floor while they were on vacation.

SERVPRO of Bend's water team were called out to assess the damage. The water technician found that the angle stop in the master bathroom had a break, causing damage to both the first and second floor bathrooms. The vinyl floor and subfloor material were saturated, so it was decided to remove both materials. The water had also damaged the drywall in the second bathroom to the point where it had to be removed so that the drying process could be efficient.

The owner was pleased that SERVPRO of Bend was able to get out to their residence the same day they discovered the damage and take care of the loss.

2018 Had Many Destructive and Costly Weather Events

1/2/2019 (Permalink)

2018 has been another year of destructive and costly weather events. Here are some of the most costly for 2018:

Hurricane Florence:

Moody’s Analytics estimated on Sept. 21 that Hurricane Florence economic cost will fall between $38 billion and $50 billion. This same time last year, the country was reeling after Hurricane Harvey, Hurricane Irma and Hurricane Maria together cost the U.S. $270.3 billion.

source: Wall Street Journal

California Wildfires:

California’s fire agency has now exhausted its annual budget for 2018 of $442.8 million and now needs an additional $234 million to continue combatting the California fires, according to the Associated Press.

Carr Fire had cost more than $25 million.

Ferguson Fire had suppression costs soar above $64 million.

Mendocino Complex and Carr, victims have filed more than 10,000 claims so far. The total amount of those claims so far exceeds $845 million.

In 2017, the state received more than 45,000 claims totaling more than $11.8 billion. To fight all the 2017 California fires, which were less costly than the 2018 California wildfires, the state fire agency ended up spending well above the initially approved budget of $427 million, with total spending for 2017 reaching $773 million.

source: Fortune Magazine

Water Damage Sunriver, Oregon

1/2/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Bend was called to a Sunriver resort rental home over the weekend in response to some reported water damage.

The water technicians found that their had been a fairly severe dishwasher leak and it had ran long enough to saturate the parquet flooring material in both the kitchen and living room area.

Due to the extensive amount of damage that had occurred, it was necessary to first remove all of the furniture and contents so the water team could effectively dry the area. After attempting to save the parquet flooring material, it was determined that it should be removed.

Contact Information:

If you have any questions about your water or mold damage, please do not hesitate to call the SERVPRO of Bend office at 541-385-7044.

Mold Found Beneath Game Room Floor in Tumalo, Oregon Game Room

1/2/2019 (Permalink)

This older home in Tumalo, Oregon had a water loss so SERVPRO of Bend was called out to assess the damage. An ice maker in the game room had leaked, causing some damage to the flooring material.

Upon removing some of the flooring material, SERVPRO of Bend's water technicians found that there was some mold growth beneath the floor, likely caused by a previous loss. Upon approval for the insurance carrier, the team build a containment and was able to remove the affected material.

After the affected material was removed, the water technicians were able to dry the affected subfloor material.

SERVPRO Super Fan Dennis Peters

1/2/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Bend had a great visit from a super fan, Dennis Peters. Dennis was watching his team, the Washington State University Cougars playing in the Alamo Bowl. During the game, a SERVPRO commercial came on and he was excited to see the SERVPRO duck as part of the commercial.

As an avid collector of rubber ducks, Dennis came in to our office in Bend and inquired about how he could get a duck to add to his collection. Owner Brent Irwin was more than happy to provide Dennis with a SERVPRO duck to add to his collection.

His Washington State Cougars ended up winning the Alamo bowl so he was even more excited to have a win, win.

Have a Safe and Happy New Years!

12/31/2018 (Permalink)

As 2018 winds down, We At SERVPRO of Bend want to wish everyone a safe and Happy New Years.

We have had a great year and are looking forward to having a 2019 that is even more fun and prosperous. We take pride in helping people in our community that might have property damage, either large or small.

Our technicians are available 24/7, even on holidays. We hope that this coming year is safe for everyone. If you have any kind of property damage that you would like us to take a look at, don't hesitate to give SERVPRO of Bend a call, 541-385-7044

La Pine family escapes fire in manufactured home

12/26/2018 (Permalink)

A La Pine family and their pets fled their 40-year-old manufactured home unharmed on Saturday morning after a fire traced to recent electrical issues broke out in their dining room wall, officials said Sunday.

The La Pine Rural Fire District responded shortly before 10 a.m. to the reported possible structure fire with smoke in the 5200 block of Pine Forest Drive, Captain Fred Franklin said.

The occupants said one of the walls in the dining room of their 30-by-50-foot double-wide manufactured home felt hot and they noticed smoke coming from the wall.

Firefighters spotted glowing and light smoke coming from an exterior wall and made entry, finding an area about 1-by-2 feet burning near the floor and up the interior wall, Franklin said. 

An investigation determined the fire originated inside the wall and was believed to be caused by faulty or overloaded electrical wiring.

The fire district official recommended addressing all electrical problems immediately, by calling a licensed electrician. If a house fire breaks out, Franklin said residents should immediately evacuate and close all exterior doors to limit the fire's growth.

Source: News Channel 21

Some Preventative Ideas for Your Central Oregon Home During Winter

12/19/2018 (Permalink)

Winter in Central Oregon can be fun, but it's also a time to be extra careful both in and out of the house. Frigid temperatures can make water freeze and expand, causing pipes to burst. Ice buildup on the roof, if unnoticed, can damage both the roof and gutters. Slick black ice between the house and your car can turn that short walk into a hazard.

Here are a few things you can use to prevent damage to your home during the winter months: 

1. Heat Tape

Homeowners often shut off the water supply to outside spigots in late fall, but some indoor pipes—such as those located in unheated basements, crawl spaces, or even under sinks in poorly insulated houses—can still be at risk of freezing.

2. Radiant Heat Mats

Icy driveways and sidewalks lead to wintertime falls—and visits to the emergency room. Fortunately, safety doesn't have to involve spreading toxic chemicals or plant-killing salt on paved surfaces. Approved electric radiant heat mats can be used outdoors not only to save time shoveling, but also to create safer environments with less ice, fewer slips and falls, and less need to salt and condition the surface.

3. Roof and Gutter De-Icing Cables

An accumulation of snow on the roof can pose a risk if it begins to melt and then refreezes, resulting in heavy ice buildup along the edge of the roof and in the gutter. These accumulations, known as ice dams, can damage roof shingles and lead to leaks, and cause the gutter to tear away from the house.

4. Frost-Free Sillcocks

Exterior faucets are notorious for freezing and breaking in winter. One solution is to turn off the water supply to the faucets and bleed the lines so they can’t freeze. A better solution would be to replace your standard outdoor faucets with frost-free sillcocks. In a frost-free sillcock, unlike a standard exterior faucet, the valve that shuts off the water sits at the end of a long pipe so it's situated inside your house.

Mold Found Behind Baseboard in Bend, Oregon Commercial Building

12/6/2018 (Permalink)

After a coffee machine line sprung a leak, the commercial building tenant cleaned up the puddles of water that had settled on the floor.

A week later, one of the employees began smelling a musty odor in the same room that the coffee machine had the leak. SERVPRO of Bend's water team was called out to investigate.

Upon further investigation, the technician found that, though the water had been cleaned from the coffee machine incident, the water had just enough time to "wick" or be absorbed by some of the floor and wall material.

After metering the area with a surface moisture meter, the technician found it necessary to pull away the baseboard. They found microbial growth behind the baseboard. Most likely pre-existing from another loss, but since the most recent loss introduced moisture, the team took action and removed the damaged materials, along with the existing microbial growth.

Things to Look at for a Commercial HVAC System

12/5/2018 (Permalink)

During the winter months, commercial HVAC systems tend to get used more often than during the summer here in Central Oregon. SERVPRO of Bend receives calls from concerned tenants of commercial properties because of unfamiliar sounds coming from the heating unit and/or the smell of something burning.

Though we are not experts with commercial heating units, there are a few things that everyone can check to ensure that their commercial unit is functioning properly. As always, if you have questions about your HVAC system, they first person to call is your local HVAC company.

5 common commercial HVAC functions to check:

  • Odors or poor indoor air quality (IAQ)
  • Strange, unfamiliar sounds
  • Inconsistent airflow / uneven heating and cooling throughout your building
  • Loss of system efficiency
  • Unexpected rise in heating and cooling costs

These issues arise from some common problems. Below are some of the most prevalent reasons for HVAC system issues:

1. Lack of maintenance

When you aren’t having regular, routine maintenance performed, minor HVAC problems become major repair expenses.

2. Dirty or clogged filters

Dirty and worn filters can force your air conditioning unit to work harder, which increases energy costs and reduces the life of your system.

3. Leaking refrigerant

Refrigerants are liquid agents that make air conditioning possible.

4. Thermostat malfunctions

Your thermostat regulates the timing and amount of hot or cold air your unit should produce. So when your thermostat is malfunctioning, your building can suffer from intermittent temperature fluctuations, impacting comfort.

5. Improper air balance

The heated or cooled air that comes out of your vents travels through a series of ducts before it reaches each room. Dampers help control this by reducing airflow in one line and allowing more conditioned air to flow to other areas.


11/21/2018 (Permalink)

We at SERVPRO of Bend wanted to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving!

Have a great time with your family and friends. If you're traveling be sure to be safe, be patient and have a great time.

SERVPRO of Bend will have a crew available if anything happens during this holiday season. We always make ourselves available 24/7. If the unfortunate happens and you need immediate response, give us a call at 541-385-7044 and we will be on scene within 4 hours.

Have a great holiday season and enjoy your time with those you choose to be with.


Space Heater Safety

11/19/2018 (Permalink)

Safety is a top consideration when using space heaters. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission estimates that more than 25,000 residential fires every year are associated with the use of space heaters, resulting in more than 300 deaths. In addition, an estimated 6,000 people receive hospital emergency room care for burn injuries associated with contacting the hot surfaces of room heaters, mostly in non-fire situations.

When buying and installing a small space heater, follow these guidelines:

  • Only purchase newer model heaters that have all of the current safety features. Make sure the heater carries the Underwriter's Laboratory (UL) label.
  • Choose a thermostatically controlled heater, because they avoid the energy waste of overheating a room.
  • Select a heater of the proper size for the room you wish to heat. Do not purchase oversized heaters. Most heaters come with a general sizing table.
  • Locate the heater on a level surface away from foot traffic. Be especially careful to keep children and pets away from the heater.

source: https://www.energy.gov/energysaver/home-heating-systems/portable-heaters

If you have any questions about fire damage or smoke damage, give us a call at SERVPRO of Bend 541-385-7044.

Electrical Fire, Redmond Oregon

11/13/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage

This home suffered an electrical fire in the garage, resulting in considerable damage to the garage and the contents inside.

SERVPRO of Bend was called out to assess the damage after the fire inspector released the site. The cause was a device that was plugged in to the wall of the garage, causing a spark in the electrical system which resulted in the fire.

SERVPRO of Bend's Fire team reviewed the loss and were able to salvage a multitude of contents that were otherwise considered a loss. The Fire team also were able to deodorize the whole house, which also suffered smoke and odor damage from the fire.

SERVPRO of Bend's structural team removed all of the affected materials and are in the process of rebuilding the garage for the home owner.

Fire - Historic House in Bend Oregon

11/13/2018 (Permalink)

This historical house in downtown Bend, Oregon had a fire that didn't cause a lot of fire damage due to it's quick containment. However, the  house suffered a large amount of smoke damage due to the smoldering of older materials.

SERVPRO of Bend's fire team were called to assess the damage after the site had been released by the fire inspector. Upon further review of the site, the crew found it necessary to remove the lathe and plaster walls because the damage was so large. Upon removing the lathe and plaster, we found that the insulation had also been affected by the smoke. Further removal of the insulation was completed and the fire team was able to deodorize the site and remove the smoke odor

Mold Found in Wall Cavity, La Pine Oregon

11/13/2018 (Permalink)

This newer house in La Pine, Oregon had a leak in a half-bath that was above this hallway. The homeowner called SERVPRO of Bend because the began smelling a musty odor.

SERVPRO of Bend's Certified Mold Specialist went out to the residence to investigate. After using surface moisture meter and infrared camera, the technician found that the inside of the wall had been damaged by water.

SERVPRO of Bend's water team went into action. Upon removing the damaged drywall, they found existing microbial growth. The crew took the necessary precautions and remediated the mold.

After removing the mold, the team sprayed the area with an anti-microbial and covered the affected area with plastic sheeting to encapsulate the area for better containment. Once the area was dry, the structural team was able to put back the new materials back to its preloss condition.

Ceiling Damage to Residential Home Redmond, Oregon

11/13/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Bend was called out to a residence in Redmond, Oregon. The homeowner found a large, rusty looking stain in the middle of their living room ceiling. Not knowing the origin of the stain, the homeowner called SERVPRO of Bend to investigate.

The water team at SERVPRO of Bend found that a pipe in the ceiling, used for a water filtration device had broken and leaked all over the living room ceiling. Due to the amount of water that had leaked on to the ceiling, SERVPRO of Bend had to remove the complete living room ceiling.

After cleaning the area, SERVPRO of Bend placed dehumidifiers and air movers in the room and got the rest of the area dry within 2 days.

SERVPRO of Bend's structural team was able to come in and replace the drywall so the homeowners living room was back to preloss condition within a few weeks.

THANK YOU Veterans...

11/12/2018 (Permalink)

We at SERVPRO of Bend want to express our gratitude and admiration for the brave and determined men and women who have served or are currently serving in the U.S. Armed Forces. Thank you for the great sacrifices you have made to serve abroad and at home to defend our safety and liberty. We also recognize and appreciate the sacrifice and dedication of your families. We celebrate and honor you today—and every day.

We say it every year but never can say it enough, THANK YOU VETERANS and Families of Veterans who sacrifice it all so we can live in the greatest country in the world.

Most of us have been touched by a veteran and their willingness to be at the ready no matter what happens. They are the true heroes. They are the one's who walk in to desperate situations while others are running away.

Please remember to thank a veteran this day, and always. From Sea to Shining Sea.

Kitchen fire damages SW Bend home

10/3/2018 (Permalink)

A kitchen fire caused about $5,000 damage at a southwest Bend home Tuesday afternoon, officials said.

Crews were called to the reported fire shortly before 5 p.m. in the 100 block of Southwest McKinley Avenue.

Crews arrived to find a fire on the stove, extending into the cabinets. They quickly put out the fire and overhauled the area to make sure there was no further extension.

The fire caused minor damage to the home, with some smoke throughout. Losses were estimated at $5,000 to the structure and $100 worth of contents.

The fire began on the stove top, as a container of cooking oil overheated and the vapors ignited.

The resident covered the burning oil with a lid to extinguish the fire, but it already had extended into the upper cabinet.

IT is recommended that residents cover a stove top fire with a lid, and never use water on an oil fire.

Source: https://www.ktvz.com/news/kitchen-fire-damages-sw-bend-home/802337143

Washing Machine Hose Break, NW Bend

10/3/2018 (Permalink)

This home in Southwest Bend suffered a water loss when their washing machine line broke. The loss occurred in the utility room and ran for a few hours before the property owner came home and noticed that there was water pooling on her kitchen floor.

After attempting to wipe up the water with a shop vacuum, the property owner realized that the damage was to extensive for her to clean up on her own. She called SERVPRO of Bend to come out and take a look. When technicians arrived, they realized that the water was still running from the broken hose in the utility room.

SERVPRO of Bend's water team began extracting the standing water and metering areas where the damage occurred. After removing the affected materials, the team created a drying plan. Air Movers and Dehumidifiers were set in the affected areas. After two days of drying, SERVPRO of Bend was able to dry the structure and begin rebuilding the damaged areas.

Fast Food Restaurant Damage Bend, Oregon

8/22/2018 (Permalink)

A vehicle, too large for the height of the drive through at this fast-food restaurant in Bend, Oregon suffered major damage.

SERVPRO of Bend was called out to assess the damage at the restaurant after it suffered major damage by having their awning ripped off. The event happened early in the morning when an oversized truck pulled up to the fast-food window at a rapid speed.

SERVPRO of Bend was called to first, board up the damaged window temporarily so the restaurant could continue serving food from the main eating area during business hours.

SERVPRO of Bend's structural department arrived later that morning to begin repair services. SERVPRO of Bend's structural team was able to repair the damage to the awning and get the restaurant back up and running within a few days.

Water Loss, Redmond Oregon

8/20/2018 (Permalink)

This church in Redmond, Oregon suffered a water loss when a bathroom pipe, adjacent to the music room had a leak over the weekend.

SERVPRO of Bend was called out to assess the damage. Water Technicians found that an angle-stop on one of the toilets had broken and water flooded the bathroom and music room, creating an issue with the church since services were going to be happening the coming weekend. 

SERVPRO of Bend was able to build a containment around the affected area, creating a drying chamber to accelerate the drying process. Since the carpet was on a concrete slab, it was easy for our Water Technicians to dry the affected area in 2 days, with minimal removal of any affected material. The church was able to resume their services with limited interruption.

Water Line Break, Bend Oregon

8/7/2018 (Permalink)

Garage Water Loss, Bend Oregon

SERVPRO of Bend was called out to a water line break above a garage in Bend, Oregon.

The homeowner noticed their ceiling in the garage having a different color than the rest of the garage. The homeowner didn't think anything of it due to the dark color of the paint making it harder to notice immediately. At first, the homeowner thought that it might be just shadows in the garage that were showing the discoloration of the ceiling.

Once the water started pooling on the floor of the garage, the homeowner knew something larger was happening. 

SERVPRO of Bend used their infrared camera to spot the exact outline of the water damage. Once a plumber was called to fix the leak, Technicians setup a containment and began removing the affected area.

Congratulations 4H Member Hannah Perkins

8/6/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Bend is extremely proud of our Water Technician, Amy Perkins' daughter Hannah. Hannah is a member of 4H and this year was her first year to show at the Deschutes County Fair.

Hannah had two pigs that she was raising for 4H, Marshmallow and Graham Cracker.

Hannah was able to sell one of her pigs during the swine auction for a whopping $8 a pound during the Deschutes County Fair this past weekend in Redmond, OR.

We're so proud of Hannah and all the kids at 4H and FFA who continue to build their skills through each of these great organizations.

Both 4H and FFA are 4-H wonderful organizations for kids to complete hands on projects while learning. Projects include health, science and in Hannah's case, agriculture. Kids are paired with mentors to assist them with their projects. 4H and FFA are through out every county and Parrish in the country.

For more information on both of these organizations, you can click on the hyperlinks.



Mold Found During a Routine Inspection

8/3/2018 (Permalink)

Crawlspace Mold

SERVPRO of Bend was called out to a customer after they were worried about ground water seeping into their crawlspace.

The homeowner noticed water settling beneath their vapor barrier. The vapor barrier looked to them to be full of air and when they poked it, water came seeping through.

SERVPRO of Bend certified WRT technicians put on their personal protective equipment and went into the crawlspace to investigate. They found that the sump pump had malfunctioned, causing the water to collect beneath the house. 

Technicians inspected other areas of the crawlspace an found that just above the are where the standing water was, mold was starting to grow. After fixing the sump pump, SERVPRO of Bend was able to safely remove the mold from the crawlspace area.

Prineville, OR Awarded $1 Million Grant

8/2/2018 (Permalink)

Congratulations to The city of Prineville. They were recently awarded nearly $1 million in Community Block Grant funding to renovate the Prineville Soroptimists Senior Center.

The funding will help with safety and accessibility improvements. In 2017, the center provided 31,000 meals to seniors in the Prineville area and plans to continue its wonderful services. The grant means they can continue their work and grow with the community.

The Prineville Senior Center has a long history of providing important services to our community. It was established in 1987 and this grant will assist with well-needed repairs. It is critical that the Senior Center facility is up to date, safe and welcoming to those who access services. I am happy that the City has been able to support the Senior Center in acquiring this grant to preserve their building

Biology of Mold

8/2/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Bend receives many calls from concerned customers regarding mold. Here is some information that may help understand the Biology of Mold.

Mold is a fungus

Number of species of mold is not known, however

  • At least 20,000, but may be as many as 300,000 different species of mold
  • Mold derives its nutrients from decomposing, organic matter.     

We have seen many places where mold has begun to grow. Here are a few of those materials: Paper, Wood, Drywall and Paint to name a few.

Mold loves water and damp areas, especially in areas where the relative humidity is greater than 60%.

SERVPRO of Bend is committed to being on site to any size disaster, especially water in 4 hours so we can limit the amount of secondary damages like mold.

If you have any questions about Mold or any other Damage to your property, give us a call


Odor in Commercial Building Basement in Bend,OR

8/2/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Bend were called out to this commercial building after tenants smelled a foul odor coming from the basement after rather high temperatures in Central Oregon.

SERVPRO of Bend technicians put on their personal protective equipment and went into the basement. They found that an animal had been in the crawlspace area and had urinated on the sheetrock walls and concrete floors of the basement area.

By using SERVPRO's "114   Urine Odor and Stain Remover," our technicians were able to clean and neutralize the odor immediately. Due to the active agents in the 114, the smell was neutralized and the staining from the urine was no longer present. The tenants were very happy not to have the fould odor in their office anymore.

Bessie Butte Fire, Bend Oregon

7/23/2018 (Permalink)

Thank you to all the first responders who, on Sunday at around 1:00 PM were able to hold the fire lines on a wildfire that broke out near Bessie Butte. According to fire officials, the smoke plume wasd visible across the Bend area as winds pushed it to the south. A quick ground attack by fire teams enabled the fire to be encircled.

According to the Bureau of Land Management, the fire near China Hat road had burned about 50 acres in a mix of brush, grass and Ponderosa pine. 

As of Monday, July 23, 2018 there were seven engines, one 20-person crew, a bulldozer, a water tender, two single-engine air tankers (SEAT planes) and an air tanker "hitting this one hard," officials said in a tweet. More crews were being called up as well.

Hurricane Chris Poses No Direct Threat to U.S.

7/10/2018 (Permalink)

According to the National Hurricane Center, Hurricane Chris formed late Tuesday afternoon off the U.S. East Coast, becoming the second hurricane of the 2018 Atlantic hurricane season. 

Other than churning up some rough seas along the coast, Chris poses no direct threat to the USA as it races out to sea. It could clip Newfoundland, Canada, later in the week. 

As of 5 p.m. EDT, Chris had winds of 85 mph, making it a Category 1 hurricane. The center of Chris was 205 miles east-southeast of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina, and was moving to the northeast at 10 mph.

Treatment Center Water Loss - Bend Oregon

6/15/2018 (Permalink)

Flooded Office

SERVPRO of Bend was called to a treatment center in downtown Bend after it was reported that they had flooding on the main level and some of the offices had been affected.

The cause of the flooding was due to a drain on the exterior of the building being clogged. When a sudden rain storm hit the Central Oregon area, the water was unable to drain properly and found its way into some of the offices.

Fortunately, SERVPRO of Bend was able to mobilize its drying team and set up equipment to dry the affected areas and get the treatment center back up in running in 2 days.

What Is Vermiculite and Why Should You Be Concerned?

6/7/2018 (Permalink)

Vermiculite in an attic

Vermiculite is a natural insulation material — but it’s one that you definitely don’t want to have in your attic.

Vermiculite is a mineral mined from the earth, composed of shiny flakes that look like cat litter. When this mineral is put in an oven, it expands like popcorn. Expanded vermiculite is lightweight, fire-resistant, and odorless; since it has an R-value of about R-2 per inch, it was used for decades as an insulation material.

There is only one problem with this wonderful material: most vermiculite contains friable asbestos. When inhaled, vermiculite dust can be hazardous.

Owners of homes with vermiculite have a huge headache. If your attic contains vermiculite:

  • It’s dangerous to enter your attic.
  • It’s dangerous to perform any attic air sealing work until all of the vermiculite has been removed by a certified asbestos abatement contractor.
  • It’s dangerous to install cellulose insulation on top of the vermiculite

If you have more questions about vermiculite or other building material that you need help identifying, give SERVPRO of Bend a call at 541-385-7044.

Commercial / Industrial Building Maintenance

6/1/2018 (Permalink)

We in Central Oregon experience a variety of weather events from the flash wind storm to hail and rain, sometimes snow in July. Many of our commercial property clients ask SERVPRO of Bend what they can do as a preventative maintenance measure on their properties. Though these are not an official list of things to do, we've put together some areas that a commercial property maintenance department can look at during the year.


  • Inspect at least twice a year, and after any severe storm.
  • Create a roofing file for each building; review warranty information.
  • Clear roof drains of debris (roof warranties don't cover this).
  • Walk the perimeter to examine sheet metal, copings, and previously repaired sections.
  • Check roof-to-wall connections, and examine flashings for wrinkles and tearing.
  • Plan a moisture survey every 2-4 years to detect wet insulation or leaks. More frequent if a large storm has hit the area. 


  • Inspect at least twice a year, with seasonal start-up and run inspections.
  • Pumps usually require bearing lubrication at least annually. Inspect couplings and check for leaks. Investigate unusual noises.
  • Air-handling unit maintenance should include cleaning or replacing air filters at least quarterly, based on condition.


  • Inspect at least annually; investigate any leaks or unusual noises, especially if the temperatures are or were in the low 30's.
  • Domestic water heaters and boilers should be fire-tested periodically, using flue-gas analysis to adjust the flue draft and combustion air input to optimize efficiency.  
  • Sump and sewage ejection pumps are replaced on an as-needed basis, but should be checked for function. Exposed pumps should be lubricated annually.

SERVPRO of Bend can help commercial property managers or maintenance crews by providing a free, Emergency Ready Profile (ERP) that assists in identifying areas that might need to be addressed.

If you would like to schedule an ERP with one of our Technicians, feel free to contact SERVPRO of Bend at 541-385-7044.


PRODUCT SPOTLIGHT: #114 SERVPRO Odor and Stain Remover.

6/1/2018 (Permalink)

#114 SERVPRO Odor and Stain Remover.

SERVPRO of Bend is called to many situations, often times requiring very specific cleaning products to properly mitigate a job.

Fortunately, SERVPRO has their own manufacturing plant for cleaning products, SERVPRO Professional Cleaning Products (SPCP,) which manufacturers all in-house cleaning products for all franchises throughout the United States. One cleaning agent that we use quite often is #114 SERVPRO Odor and Stain Remover.

SERVPRO of Bend is called to many jobs were urine or bio material that has infiltrated a home or commercial business. Using #114 SERVPRO Odor and Stain Remover, our technicians are able to eliminate odors and stains that may have been caused by urine, feces, vomit, spilled food, skunk, perspiration or other organic material.

If you need our services ore would like to learn more about the wide array of SERVPRO products we use in-house, feel free to contact SERVPRO of Bend at 541-385-7044.


Things Never to Plug into a Power Strip

5/29/2018 (Permalink)

It seems that, often times we have more appliances than outlets to plug them in to.. That's when a lot of people use power strips to compensate for the lack of available outlet. In a lot of cases, the power strip is not the safest option. Here are some items you should avoid plugging in to a power strip.

Large Appliances

Large appliances like refrigerators require a lot of power and frequently cycle on and off, which can easily overload a power strip. These devices should be plugged directly into a wall outlet dedicated solely to powering the appliance. If you try to plug additional appliances into the same outlet, you risk tripping the circuit.

Microwave Oven

The microwave is a miracle of modern food preparation, thawing, cooking, and reheating food in a fraction of the time it takes a conventional oven. But all that marvelous activity requires more energy than a power strip can provide. Like a conventional electric oven, the microwave should have its own dedicated power outlet.

Coffee Maker

You may not think that your morning cup of joe requires that much energy to brew, but most coffee makers need quite bit of amperage to turn those roasted beans into a hot beverage. Plug your coffee maker directly into the outlet or you run the risk of waking up to a half-brewed pot of coffee.

Hair-Care Appliances

It takes a tremendous amount of electricity to power your hair dryers, curling wands, and flat irons. In fact, to prevent the circuit breaker from tripping, any hairdressing accessory that operates with heat should be plugged directly into a wall outlet—preferably a GFCI outlet to avoid the danger of accidental water exposure, a common bathroom hazard.

Prescribed burns due south of Bend Thursday, Friday

5/11/2018 (Permalink)

On Thursday and Friday, firefighters are planning ignitions on the 121-acre South Bend 446 unit, located south of China Hat, about one mile south of the Back Nine Golf course and Woodside Ranch. On Friday, firefighters plan ignitions on South Bend 137. The 250-acre unit is adjacent to Lost Tracks Golf Course and will be visible from China Hat Road.

Burning in these units is designed to decrease hazardous fuels accumulations within the Wildland-Urban Interface near to the city of Bend and surrounding values at risk to reduce the risk of high-intensity wildfire, as well as reintroducing fire into a fire adapted ecosystem.

Due to the location of these units, the public could see smoke and drivers may experience smoke impacts on nearby highways and Forest roads. For all prescribed fires, signs will be posted on significant nearby Forest roads and state highways that could be impacted. 

Cleaning Smoke Damage

5/11/2018 (Permalink)

Prescribed burns and Wild fires may not directly affect your house. However, the smoke and soot can get airborne and affect areas of your home that you may not see.  

Even if the fire was localized, smoke and soot can have traveled throughout the house, affecting walls, carpet, upholstery, drapes, clothing, and other personal items. In order to repair and recover your damaged property, you will want to have clean the smoke and soot damage from walls, textiles, clothing, and furniture, and remove the smoky odor as well

SERVPRO of Bend has extensive knowledge and is certified in Fire and Smoke damage clean up and odor control.

If you have smoke damage from a fire or prescribed burn, feel free to give us a call and we can come out and help you decide on a plan for mitigating the damage.

Call SERVPRO of Bend 541-385-7044.

SERVPRO of Bend at the Central Oregon Builders Home and Garden Show

5/2/2018 (Permalink)

Come visit SERVPRO of Bend at the 2018 Central Oregon Builders Home and Garden Show at the Deschutes County Fairgrounds May 4-6.

We will be at booth 302, so come on by and visit us. We will have Putt-Putt golf available so you can hone your putting skills. 

Enter to win a Home First Aid Kit courtesy of SERVPRO of Bend.

We look forward to seeing you there. If you mention that you heard about the show from our web site, receive 5 extra raffle tickets.

Julie Irwin Nominated for Bend Woman of the Year

4/5/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Bend's owner, Julie Irwin has been on of over 40 nominees for the Bend Chamber of Commerce's "Woman of the Year."

The 2017 Women of the Year recipient exemplifies the character and accomplishment expected of the Women of the Year. 

The Bend Chamber received 42 nominees in total for the five awards categories. Nominations were open to both Bend Chamber members and non-members. The purpose of the Women of the Year Awards is to recognize exceptional women of all ages, of diverse cultures, roles and accomplishments, who have demonstrated commitments for the betterment of our local community and beyond.

Read More Here:


Done With Winter? Some Things You Can Do Now to Prep Your House for Spring

3/8/2018 (Permalink)

Clean Rain Gutters

Wind, animals, and gravity bring sticks, leaves, and other organic matter into your rain gutters, and chances are yours have accumulated their share of detritus over the winter. That's bad news for your home: When downspouts are clogged, rainwater can spill out of your gutters and around the perimeter of your house, putting it at risk for leaks and flooding. Get ready for spring showers by removing the mess from your gutters to ensure that the water will flow freely.

Change Filters

To maintain optimal air quality in your home, it’s a good idea to replace your HVAC system's air filter seasonally as well as the filter in your kitchen range hood. While you're at it, consider changing the filters in your water purification system. Depending on your water, you might not need to change these as often as your HVAC filters, but it's not a bad idea to check them now. So, go ahead and welcome spring with new filters all around to keep your home clean and fresh, and your appliances in good working order.

Check Vents

As snow melts away from your home’s foundation, it’s a good time to check any vents along the foundation or in the attic. Look for missing or damaged screens, debris, signs of insect or rodent infestation, or other issues, and correct them before they have a chance to become bigger problems later in the season.

Check the Roof

Take advantage of the sun’s return to check your roof for cracked or missing shingles or tiles, and examine flashing around vents and the chimney for damage. While you’re at it, have the chimney cleaned and inspected by a professional.

If you have any questions about the above items or some other cleaning tips, feel free to contact SERVPRO of Bend at 541-385-7044.

Bathroom Hazards, Like Mold To Be Aware Of

3/6/2018 (Permalink)


With a daily influx of humidity, bathrooms are a prime locale for mold. You can often see it in the grout between tiles or along caulk lines, but it can also grow out-of-sight behind walls and ceilings, under floors, or inside ductwork. Prevent the buildup with proper ventilation, including dehumidifiers, fans, and open windows.

Soap Scum

Neglecting the tub isn’t just unsightly—that slimy buildup can lead to slips and falls while bathing or getting in and out of the tub. The bathroom is the leading location for unintentional injuries, especially for older people, so in addition to keeping the tub or shower floor clean, consider adding non-slip strips to the floor or installing grab bars to decrease the risk of injury.

Air Fresheners

Everyone knows what happens in the bathroom—but covering up the scent with an air freshener may do more harm than good. Some sprays contain VOCs and cancer-causing chemicals such as benzene and formaldehyde. If it stinks, open a window or turn on a fan.

Flexible Vinyl Flooring

Sure, it’s a quick upgrade, but some vinyl flooring contains phthalates, a volatile compound often used to make plastics more flexible and durable. This chemical releases into the air and household dust, especially in enclosed areas, and high levels of phthalates have been linked to asthma and allergies in children.

Bathroom Cleaners

It’s tempting to use the super-duper strongest cleanser you can find, but some commercial cleaners contain chemicals that can irritate the eyes and skin or emit dangerous fumes. Instead, look for cleansers certified as the Safer Choice by the EPA, or make your own from non-toxic products like vinegar, borax, and baking soda.

If you have questions or need help cleaning up a mess, feel free to call SERVPRO of Bend's Cleaning Team at 541-385-7044

Madras, Oregon duplex deck fire traced to cigarettes

3/1/2018 (Permalink)

Neighbors, first fire crew stop blaze's spread

MADRAS, Ore. - A fire broke out Saturday morning on the deck of a Madras duplex and threatened to move into the home, fanned by high winds, but was stopped by neighbors and fire crews, officials said -- and was sparked by improperly extinguished cigarettes.

Jefferson County Fire District No. 1 crews arrived around 10:40 a.m. at the duplex in the 200 block of Northeast Ninth Street, finding neighbors putting out the blaze, as residents were not home, said fire Captain Kasey Skaar.

The first engine split its crew, with one crew  to check the deck for extension into the duplex or adjacent unit and overhaul the burned area, Skaar said. The other crew gained access to the attic and found no extension into the area.

A second engine crew called to the scene was available for other calls. A total of three staff and nine volunteers were called out.

"Due to the high winds, the fire could have burned quickly and could have been much worse," Skaar said, thanking neighbors and fire crews for their quick response

Fire destroys Madras, Oregon mobile home; no injuries

3/1/2018 (Permalink)

MADRAS, Ore. - A fire destroyed a Madras mobile home early Friday, but the resident was away at work and there were no injuries, officials said.

Crews were called shortly after midnight to the reported fire in a single-wide mobile home at Tops Trailer Park at 23 Northwest Depot Road, Jefferson County Fire District No. 1 Captain Kasey Skaar said.

The first engine crew to arrive protected nearby homes and attacked the fire agressively, Saar said. A second engine crew soon arrived and helped with the effort, as well as salvage and overhaul. A total of 10 volunteers and three staff were called to the scene.

The home was a total loss, and the cause of the fire was not determined, Skaar said.

The American Red Cross sent disaster responders Friday to help the resident with resources for immediate basic needs, the agency said.

Central Oregon snow brings crashes; DCSO patrol car in one

2/27/2018 (Permalink)

BEND, Ore. - A few to several inches of snow fell over much of Central Oregon again Saturday morning, leading to several slide-offs and crashes around the region, none with serious injuries reported -- including a collision east of Bend that damaged a Deschutes County sheriff's patrol car.

In a Facebook post, sheriff's office Sgt. William Bailey said the deputy at the wheel was slowly approaching the stop sign on Deschutes Market Road at Hamehook Road "but was unable to stop on the icy roadway and slid into the path of another vehicle." The deputy was not identified.

"We are relieved to report that no one was injured in the crash," Bailey wrote, adding, "Even with regular driving training, accidents can happen. Even driving extremely slow, accidents can happen. If you have to go out, drive carefully!"

Bend-area observers reported 2-4 or more inches of new snow by Saturday morning, while Sisters and Redmond had about two inches, Prineville over an inch and Madras about a half-inch 

The National Weather Service reduced Sunday's expected snow amounts a bit, but still predicts over a foot in the Cascades and 2-5 more inches possible in the Bend area by Sunday night, though a mix of rain and snow is predicted during the daytime as temperatures climb to near 40 degrees.  Below-normal temperatures and a chance of snow showers linger in the area through the coming week.

Home Fires Peak During Winter Months

2/22/2018 (Permalink)

Working smoke alarms cut the chances of dying in a house fire in half, and they are a family's first indication of a fire. But once that alarm sounds a fire can spread quickly, leaving only a minute or two to escape, according to the National Fire Protection Association. That's why it's so important to have an escape plan and practice it using different ways out of the house.

NSC provides the following tips to keep your home safe from fire:

  • Install both types of smoke alarms (ionization and photoelectric) and carbon monoxide alarms; change the batteries at least once a year in these devices
  • Plan – and practice – an escape route and agree on a meeting place outside of your home; be prepared to assist young children, family members with special needs and pets
  • Know two ways out of every room in the home
  • Learn how to use your fire extinguisher
  • If your clothes catch on fire, stop, drop and roll
  • When evacuating, if door handles are hot, pick an alternate route
  • Leave your house and call for help; do not go back to help someone else

If you have questions about fire mitigation, please give SERVPRO of Bend a call at 541-385-7044. We have certified fire mitigation specialists on staff to help.

47% of reported home structure fires were caused by cooking.

2/20/2018 (Permalink)

According to the National Fire Protection Agencey (NFPA)

  • In 2011-2015, U.S. fire departments responded to an estimated average of 170,200 home structure fires that involved cooking equipment per year. Almost half (47%) of reported home structure fires were caused by cooking.
  • Ranges or cooktops, with or without ovens, accounted for the majority (62%) of home cooking fire incidents and even larger shares of civilian deaths (87%).Unattended cooking was by far the leading contributing factor in these fires and fire deaths.
  • More than half (55%) of reported non-fatal home cooking fire injuries occurred when the victims tried to fight the fire themselves.

If you have questions about Fire Mitigation or Remodeling, call SERVPRO of Bend at 541-385-7044.

Extreme Makeover: SERVPRO of Bend Fleet Vehicle

2/13/2018 (Permalink)

Hot off the press and out of the garage!

We're extremely excited to have a new member of our already wonderful fleet of vehicles.

This small Versa was originally a plain silver color but after being rescued by SERVPRO of Bend, it got new life.

We're so excited to have given this new marketing vehicle an extreme makeover, thanks to SERVPRO's preferred provider, Build a sign llc.

We couldn't be happier with the new look so look for it racing around town (within legal limits of course).

Weather, climate threats top list of 2018 Global Risks Report

2/6/2018 (Permalink)

Weather and climate threats are among the top risks that will have the biggest global impact in the next 10 years, according to a report by the World Economic Forum.

The report is an assessment by 1,000 experts and decision-makers on the likelihood and impact of global risks over a 10-year period.

Following a devastating year for weather and natural disasters in 2017, the Global Risk Report highlighted the environment as an area of particular concern this year.

Behind weapons of mass destruction in the top spot are extreme weather events, natural disasters, failure of climate change mitigation and adaptation and water crises.

"Extreme weather events have ranked in the top two future risks since 2014. It should be alarming to the general public," AccuWeather Meteorologist Brett Anderson said.

Meanwhile, extreme weather events and natural disasters claimed spots one and two for risks most likely to occur in the next 10 years.

Top Tips for a Leaking Toilet

1/5/2018 (Permalink)

In some cases, you may find that your toilet has a small leak that is manageable if you understand where the leak is coming from. First, some of the washers between the bowl and tank may have failed. Shut off the supply valve, empty the tank with a flush, then remove the nuts, bolts, and washers from the underside of the tank. Lift the tank, position it on its side, and see if the washers need replacing.

Another culprit may be faulty fasteners securing the fill valve and ballcock to the bottom of the tank. Before you replace those parts, however, first try simply tightening the nuts and bolts holding them in place—that often solves the problem.

On the other hand, if the leak seems to be coming from the base of the tank, chances are the wax ring that seals the toilet to the floor has failed. Replacing the wax ring is a much bigger job, since it involves removing the entire toilet from its base. If you decide to replace the wax ring yourself—preferably with a friend to help with the lifting—take the extra step of also replacing any bolts that show signs of corrosion. And, once you have the toilet back in place, don’t forget to add a bead of caulk around the base.

If you feel that a job such as this is more than you can handle, SERVPRO of Bend is glad to help. Feel free to call us at 541-385-7044.

Basement Mold

1/2/2018 (Permalink)

If your house has a basement, then basement water leakage and excess basement humidity levels could be one of the contributors to mold growth in your home.  It has been documented that at least "98% of all sub-surface basement areas will leak, at some point in their life." 

There can be many reasons for a damp or leaky basement and they all add up to problems for as homeowners, if not corrected.  Actual water leakage should not be confused with the high relative humidity typically found in basements.   Both can pose serious problems, but need very different approaches to affect a cure.

Moisture trapped between the foundation wall and the finished basement wall can allow mold to grow unnoticed. Long-standing moisture problems can lead to decay, resulting in structural damage to the house.

If you have questions about a high amount of humidity in your home or feel that you have some sort of abnormal growth on building materials, you can call SERVPRO of Bend and we would be glad to help.



Importance Of Cleaning Your Dryer Vent

11/16/2017 (Permalink)

In 2010-2014, U.S. municipal fire departments responded to an estimated 15,970 home fires involving clothes dryers or washing machines each year. These fires resulted in annual losses estimated at 13 civilian deaths, 440 civilian injuries, and $238 million in direct property damage.  

Facts and figures

  • Clothes dryers accounted for 92% of the fires; washing machines 4%, and washer and dryer combinations accounted for 5%.
  • The leading factor contributing to the ignition of home fires involving clothes dryers was failure to clean, accounting for one-third (33%) of dryer fires.
  • A mechanical or electrical failure or malfunction was involved in the vast majority of home fires involving washing machines.
  • Fires involving clothes dryers usually started with the ignition of something that was being dried or was a byproduct (such as lint) of drying, while washing machine fires usually involved the ignition of some part of the appliance.  

Category and Class of Water

11/15/2017 (Permalink)

On practically every job that our technicians are sent out to requires them to identify the "Category" and "Class" of the water. Many customers have asked about what our technicians mean with they discuss the category and class of the water that has damaged the property.

Assessing the severity of the damage is important for determining what is needed to start water damage repair and water removal. There are several different categories assigned to water damage.

Category 1 refers to clean water, or water that does not pose a threat to humans. Possible causes of this type of damage include broken appliances or sink overflows.

Category 2 water is also called gray water. This means that the water is contaminated and may cause sickness of ingested. This type of water contains microorganisms. Broken toilets, broken sump pumps, and seepage may cause category 2 water damage.

Category 3 water is known as black water. This type of water is unsanitary, as it contains bacteria and other organisms that cause sickness. The possible sources of black water damage include sewage problems and contamination of standing water.

There are also several classes of water damage. The class of damage is important when assessing water damage repair options.

Class 1 is the least harmful form of damage. Materials absorb very little of the water from this type of damage. Water damage repair is the easiest in this type of situation.

Class 2 has a fast rate of evaporation, which means that carpets and cushions may be damaged. Water damage repair is more difficult when it involves class 2 damage.

Class 3 has the fastest rate of evaporation. In this case, the water may come from broken sprinklers or other overhead sources, soaking the walls and furniture.

Class 4 requires special water restoration and water removal procedures. This type of damage may affect hardwood floors, plaster, and concrete.

If you have questions about the category and class of water, or any other water damage related questions, feel free to call us at SERVPRO of Bend 541-3385-7044.

SERVPRO of Bend Supports Our Veterans

11/9/2017 (Permalink)

Take your time to thank a veteran this Saturday, November 11th. Without our Veteran's, we wouldn't have such a great country.

Veterans Day is an official United States public holiday, observed annually on November 11, that honors military veterans; that is, persons who served in the United States Armed Forces. It coincides with other holidays, including Armistice Day and Remembrance Day, celebrated in other countries that mark the anniversary of the end of World War I;

SERVPRO of Bend Supports and Thanks our Veterans.


10/31/2017 (Permalink)

"Who Ya Gonna Call?"

SERVPRO of Bend's Marketing Team, a.k.a The MoldBusters were volunteering in Sunriver Oregon this Halloween.

Sunriver Village was having a Trick or Treat event and asked if volunteers from SERVPRO of Bend could assist with handing out candy and judging the costume contest. Our Mold Busters were hard at work to make sure that everyone had a great, and safe Halloween.

Preparation Tips for Winterizing Your Home in Central Oregon

10/17/2017 (Permalink)

Preparation Tips for Winterizing Your Home

In Central Oregon, late November is usually when temperatures start lowering to freezing conditions. It is always good to start preparing for winter early so when the weather begins to dip down into the freezing range, you're prepared.

Winterize Plumbing Pipes

Winterizing plumbing pipes is a process that prepares household plumbing for freezing temperatures that can cause leaks and breaks in the home. When water freezes, it expands as it becomes ice. This expansion produces pressure within pipes which causes damage. Winterizing plumbing is recommended when a house will be vacant for a long period of time and no water will be running through the pipes.

The winterizing process sometimes involves emptying the water heater, draining all water from the pipes and filling all fixtures with antifreeze solution.

Preparing for Winterizations

Begin with a plan for winterizing your plumbing. It is easy to miss a step, so you make yourself a checklist of all parts of the house with the steps detailed below, including all taps and valves. Mark them off as you complete them so you'll know you did everything—and won't have any nasty surprises come cold weather.

If you have further questions about winterizing your home, feel free to call SERVPRO of Bend at 541-385-7044. We're always here to help.

Nearly Half of Puerto Rico Doesn’t Have Clean Drinking Water

10/3/2017 (Permalink)

Last week, Hurricane Maria slammed into Puerto Rico as a powerful Category 4 storm, bringing with it 20 inches of rain and 155 mile per hour winds. Much of the island was devastated: Nearly all of the 3.4 million people on the island lost power, 80 percent of the agriculture was decimated, and the storm is responsible for 16 deaths, so far.

ODF lifts regulated closure in Central Oregon

10/3/2017 (Permalink)

Over the last few weeks, cooler temperatures and increased precipitation has reduced the fire danger throughout lands protected by Oregon Department of Forestry in Central Oregon. 

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As a result of this reduced fire danger, the Regulated Closure in ODF’s Central Oregon District terminated at 12:01 a.m. Tuesday.  These restrictions were in place to limit human-caused fires during high fire danger when rapid fire growth may occur. 

While fire danger is reduced the potential for fires to burn uncontrolled or ignite due to carelessness remains, officials said.

Gordon Foster, Prineville Unit forester, reminded, “We need the public to maintain a high level of awareness and be vigilant in their prevention actions.  The risk of fire is reduced, not eliminated.” 

Fire season is still in effect for the Central Oregon District, restricting the use of tracer ammunition and exploding targets as well as other forestry activities.

Campfires are allowed on ODF-protected lands in Central Oregon. However, open burning in The Dalles Unit and Prineville-Sisters Unit require burn permits.  This includes yard debris and burning forestry slash. 

Never leave a fire unattended, whether a campfire or debris burn.  To reduce the risk of an uncontrolled fire always clear the area around burn area, have tools handy, and follow all requirements on your permit.

Fire Prevention: 5 Lesser-Known fire starters to avoid

9/19/2017 (Permalink)

Here are some surprising hazards that may be lurking in your home. So, in honor of National Fire Prevention Month, and as Part 2 of our “Fire Safety” series, here are 5 lesser-known fire starters to avoid.

1. Dust collection

Dust builds up quickly and can make the perfect kindling — especially clumps that accumulate near electrical sockets and appliances. All it takes is one errant spark to light up a dust bunny before it spreads to nearby curtains or upholstery.

Whenever you sweep floors or dust furniture, pay special attention to vulnerable areas, like around electronics, the washing machine and dryer, and the refrigerator. In addition, don’t ignore hard-to-reach places where dust has likely collected for some time, including behind shelves, atop ceiling fans, underneath the bed, and behind dressers. Not only will your house be cleaner and that much safer, but your sinuses will also thank you.

2. Dead, decaying flowers

Although rare, dead flowers can set off a blaze … and do. Back in 2010, such a case occurred at a home in Little Rock, Arkansas. Dead flowers left in a plastic pot on a sunny porch erupted in a fire that caused $20,000 in damages. Similarly, investigators of a 2012 house fire in Des Moines determined the ignition source to be a wooden pot of dried-up dead flowers and mulch on a hot day.

As a matter of fact, all it takes is some parched organic material (such as flowers, plants, or even compost) plus soaring temperatures to create the right conditions for spontaneous combustion. Additionally, chemicals and nitrates make an inferno all the more plausible. (Personal anecdote: a friend of mine once came home to firefighters putting out a fence blaze ignited by a compost bin. True story!)

With all that said, give those flowers some love. Or, at the very least, be sure to aerate the soil, especially when the mercury climbs. And if you have a compost bin out back, keep it enclosed and constantly tumbled to preserve moisture. No matter how hot it gets, it’ll be much more fire safe.

Check out:  Hot Dogs, Hamburgers, and … Baking Soda? Test Your BBQ Safety Knowledge

3. Piles of old newspapers

Believe it or not, stacks of old newspapers left near gas and propane containers are the culprit of many fire damage claims. A clutter of paper situated near a vent, space heater, or electrical socket also runs a major risk of starting a fire.

If you’ve acquired an impressive trove of news memorabilia that you want to hold onto, it might be best to digitize them. Not only is it safer, but your future historical insights are more likely to withstand the elements. Otherwise, it’s probably time to take out the recycling.

4. Glass fixtures

You know how magnifying glasses can focus sunlight to burn holes through paper or help start a campfire? Well, household glassware can have the same effect.

Between 2010 and 2015, the London Fire Brigade recorded 125 fires caused by glass fixtures (7 of which happened in the winter). And since London isn’t a sun-clad destination to begin with, those numbers are remarkable.

Be mindful of where you keep your fish tank, mirror, glass high heels, or crystal ball — they may not bode well near a window or skylight.

5. Oil-stained linens and clothes

Clothes, sheets, or cleaning rags that are stained with cooking oil, grease, gasoline, or cleaning agents can run the risk of causing a fire when run through the dryer. What’s more, oil-stained towels have been known to spontaneously combust after they’ve been taken out and folded. Crazy, right?

Anything that’s suffered stains like these may need to be cycled through the wash a few times to ensure there are no flammable remnants. Consumer Reports recommends not using liquid fabric softener, since combustibility tests show they actually expedite the burning process. As a safe alternative, they suggest using dryer sheets.

Of course, things can (and do) happen. Luckily, renters and homeowners insurance may provide a surefire safety net against fires, plus an onslaught of other perils, at and away from home.

If you have any questions about Fire & Water Restoration, feel free to call us at SERVPRO of Bend at (541) 385-7044.

Four Tips to Reduce Your House Fire Risk This Fall

9/19/2017 (Permalink)

Fall is a great time to start considering gearing up for the cooler weather. Warm sweaters, falling leaves, and a cozy fire. About the cozy fire...the American Red Cross finds that 7 people die in a home fire every day, while 36 suffer from injuries. And each year, $7 million in property damage occurs.

Here are 4 tips to reduce your house fire risk this fall.

1. Check your smoke alarm battery

Smoke alarms are easy to forget until they chirp in the middle of the night, but experts recommend you change your fire alarm batteries every year. Several years ago, the International Fire Chiefs Association launched a campaign called “Change Your Clock, Change Your Batteries™,” encouraging people to change their fire alarm batteries on the same day we switch to Daylight Saving Time in the fall. You could wait until then, but why not do it now while you’re tackling regular house maintenance?

2. Have a working fire extinguisher ready

Did you know your fire extinguisher could expire? It’s true, and you actually need to change it out every 5 to 15 years. That’s quite a variance, so one way to know whether yours is still in working order is to regularly check the pressure gauge to ensure the needle still falls within the green area. If not, it could be unreliable and should be replaced or checked. You can also have your extinguisher serviced and refilled by checking online for a center near you.

This is also a good time to review effective fire extinguisher use. The National Fire Prevention Association suggests you remember the word PASS to remind you how to use it:

Pull the pin. Hold the extinguisher with the nozzle pointing away from you and release the locking mechanism.

Aim low. Point the extinguisher at the base of the fire.

Squeeze the lever slowly and evenly.

Sweep the nozzle from side to side.

3. Watch your candles

Yeah, we know — it’s pumpkin spice candle season. And having a house full of burning candles can feel inviting … until one causes a fire. It’s more common than you might think. In fact, the National Fire Prevention Association estimates that almost 10,000 home fires are caused by candles, with roughly one-third starting in bedrooms. This one is so easy to fix: never leave a candle unattended and be sure to extinguish all of them before you go to bed. And if you have any in the bathroom or kitchen, make sure you snuff them out too.

4. Don’t leave your pots unattended

Although it’s easy to picture candles or fireplaces causing most of the damage,  the main cause of house fires is actually cooking. (As if we needed one more reason to turn to takeout!) But kitchen fires are not to be taken lightly. They often occur when pots are left unattended or on stoves with clutter (like wooden spoons or kitchen towels) that catch a spark. So clean your stove and keep all flammable items on another counter.

Now’s also a good time to make sure you’re covered with the right insurance.

If you need assistance or have any questions about Fire Damage Restoration, feel free to give us a call at SERVPRO of Bend, (541) 385-7044.

Hurricane Maria cripples Dominica as it churns toward Puerto Rico

9/19/2017 (Permalink)

Hurricane Maria

Hurricane Maria has pounded Dominica with "widespread devastation" as it barrels toward St. Croix and threatens catastrophic damage to Puerto Rico.

Hurling winds of 160 mph (257 kph), Maria shredded the Dominica Prime Minister's house overnight and left much of the island -- population 73,000 -- in ruins.

"Initial reports are of widespread devastation," Dominica Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit posted on Facebook early Tuesday.

"So far we have lost all what money can buy and replace. My greatest fear for the morning is ... news of serious physical injury and possible deaths as a result of likely landslides triggered by persistent rains."

A few hours earlier, the Prime Minister posted, "My roof is gone. I am at the complete mercy of the hurricane. House is flooding."

Maria is now the strongest hurricane on record to make landfall in Dominica, a former French and British colony with an economy heavily dependent on tourism and agriculture.

Now, it's taking aim on Puerto Rico and Islands already crippled by Hurricane Irma.

'Don't go out under any circumstances'

As of 11 a.m. ET Tuesday, Maria was centered about 150 miles (240 kilometers) southeast of St. Croix and was headed west-northwest at 10 mph.

While Maria moves closer to St. Croix, the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico, preparations against life-threatening storm surge, flooding and destructive winds "should be rushed to completion,' the National Hurricane Center said.

A hurricane warning is in effect Tuesday for Guadeloupe, Dominica, St. Kitts, Nevis, Montserrat, the US and British Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, Culebra, and Vieques.

"A dangerous storm surge accompanied by large and destructive waves will raise water levels by as much as 7 to 11 feet above normal tide levels in the hurricane warning area near where the center of Maria moves across the Leeward Islands and the British Virgin Islands," the hurricane center said.

Guadeloupe's regional government tweeted a stern warning to residents Tuesday: "Don't go out under any circumstances."

Puerto Rico says Maria 'will be catastrophic'

After crossing St. Croix, Maria will head toward the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico on Tuesday night and Wednesday as "an extremely dangerous Category 4 or 5 hurricane," the National Hurricane Center said.

That would make Maria the first Category 4 or 5 hurricane to make landfall in Puerto Rico in 85 years.

Hurricane Harvey

9/7/2017 (Permalink)

Hurricane Harvey was the first major hurricane to make landfall in the United States since Wilma in 2005, ending a record 12-year drought in which no major hurricanes made landfall in the country. In a four-day period, many areas received more than 40 inches (1,000 mm) of rain as the system meandered over eastern Texas and adjacent waters, causing catastrophic flooding. With peak accumulations of 51.88 in (1,318 mm), Harvey is the wettest tropical cyclone on record in the contiguous United States. The resulting floods inundated hundreds of thousands of homes, displaced more than 30,000 people, and prompted more than 17,000 rescues.

The eighth named storm, third hurricane, and the first major hurricane of the 2017 Atlantic hurricane season, Harvey developed from a tropical wave to the east of the Lesser Antilles, reaching tropical storm status on August 17. The storm crossed through the Windward Islands on the following day, passing just south of Barbados and later near Saint Vincent. Upon entering the Caribbean Sea, Harvey began to weaken due to moderate wind shear and degenerated into a tropical wave north of Colombia early on August 19. The remnants were monitored for regeneration as it continued west-northwestward across the Caribbean and the Yucatán Peninsula, before redeveloping over the Bay of Campeche on August 23. Harvey then began to rapidly intensify on August 24, regaining tropical storm status and becoming a hurricane later that day. While the storm moved generally northwest, Harvey's intensification phase stalled slightly overnight from August 24–25; however, Harvey soon resumed strengthening and quickly became a major hurricane and attained Category 4 intensity later that day. Hours later, Harvey made landfall near Rockport, Texas, at peak intensity.

Harvey caused at least 71 confirmed deaths;] Economic losses are preliminarily estimated at between $70 to $200 billion,]with a large portion of the losses sustained by uninsured homeowners.

Multiple SERVPRO Storm team members are on site and already assisting with the clean up.

What time is the solar eclipse where I live?

8/18/2017 (Permalink)

You'll need perfect timing to catch the exact moment the moon blocks the sun in your city.

The total solar eclipse on Aug. 21 lasts less than a minute in some places, while a partial eclipse can be visible for an hour or more.

Everyone in the USA will be able to see at least a partial eclipse, weather permitting, on Aug. 21, but when is the best time to watch?

The short answer is that it depends on where you live.

Type your zip code here to find out when to head outside.

The celestial show will start will start in Oregon at 9:05 a.m. PT, reaching totality at 10:17 a.m. PT. The last glimpse of the moon's shadow will fade out near Charleston, S.C. at 4:10 p.m. ET.

The view will be the best for those lucky enough to be in the “path of totality” which crosses these 12 states: Oregon, Idaho, Wyoming, Nebraska, Kansas, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina

Eclipse concert crowds jam Prineville-area roadways

8/17/2017 (Permalink)

Eclipse 2017 Traffic Through Prineville, Oregon

PRINEVILLE, Ore. - Thousands of festival-goers heading to Big Summit Prairie have been traveling through Prineville since Wednesday, causing traffic backups of 15 to 30 miles east of town, according to authorities.

Oregon State Police reported late Wednesday a 30-mile backup from the concert site, where 30,000 or more people are expected to attend the weekend event that begins Thursday.

Here's a news release issued Thursday morning by Crook County:

Traffic has been extremely heavy traveling East through Prineville since Wednesday, August 16th.  We saw an increase in congestion later in the day yesterday with traffic traveling East toward Big Summit Prairie.  Already today traffic is heavy from just west of Prineville headed east through town.

County operations and Law Enforcement is working with County Emergency Management, Fire and EMS as well as the Road Department and ODOT to mitigate the impact to our community.

Home Water Testing Part 1

8/17/2017 (Permalink)

At SERVPRO of Bend, we receive a lot of questions about the quality of customer's water after they have a water loss. In this two part series, we present Home Water Testing based on the Environmental Protection Agencies suggestions.

Should I Have My Water Tested?

The answer to this question depends on several factors. It concerns your health and the health of your family, so you need to know some basic facts. In addition to illness, a variety of less serious problems such as taste, color, odor and staining of clothes or fixtures are signs of possible water quality problems. Other things to think about include the nearness of your water well to septic systems and the composition of your home’s plumbing materials. This fact sheet provides information to help you decide whether or not to have your water tested, and if so, suggested tests for your situation.

Public Water Systems

When you turn on the tap, where does the water come from? If you pay a water bill, you are purchasing water from a public water system, where your water is monitored, tested and the results reported to the federal, state or tribal drinking water agencies responsible for making sure it meets the National Primary Drinking Water Standards. Your water company must notify you when contaminants are in the water they provide that may cause illness or other problems. Most people in the United States receive water from a community water system that provides its customers with an annual water quality report, also known as a Consumer Confidence Report. Normally, you will receive it with your water bill once a year in July. The report contains information on contaminants found, possible health effects, and the water’s source. If you do not receive a report, contact your water company for this information.

Private Water Supplies

If your drinking water does not come from a public water system, or you get your drinking water from a household well, you alone are responsible for assuring that it is safe. For this reason, routine testing for a few of the most common contaminants is highly recommended. Even if you currently have a safe, pure water supply, regular testing can be valuable because it establishes a record of water quality. This record is helpful in solving any future problems and in obtaining compensation if someone damages your water supply.

For more information, visit www.epa.gov/safewater/lead, or call the Safe Drinking Water Hotline at 1-800-426-4791.

Eclipse in Portland is pretty darn close to total

8/17/2017 (Permalink)

Portland will be 99.4% of totality on August 21

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — It’s true Portland metro is not in the path of totality for the August 21 solar eclipse. But it’s pretty close.

Portland will experience 99.4% of totality at 10:19:07 that Monday morning.

So where is the best place in this part of the region to see the eclipse? Jim Todd from OMSI suggested looking to the southeast and be in an open area to see the moon’s shadow come and go

Todd said you’ll be able to see Venus to the right of the sun

It may be a good idea to stick close to home: ODOT officials said the eclipse may cause the greatest traffic jam in Oregon history.

Don Hamilton with ODOT said there may be a million people who descend on the state for the eclipse, especially in the 60-mile path of totality that spans the state from west to east.

The risk of wildfires is increased during the eclipse as well — not from the eclipse, but from the thousands of campers and out-of-staters unfamiliar with the terrain and dryness.

And don’t forget to get the right kind of eyewear. Without certified glasses, the eclipse could fry your eyes

4 days till eclipse: Major traffic across Oregon

8/17/2017 (Permalink)

Traffic Backup in Prineville, Oregon

BEND, Ore. (KOIN) — With only four more days until the solar eclipse, traffic is already picking up across Oregon

Oregon State Police said there was heavy congestion on Highway 97 NB in LaPine on Wednesday and after nightfall said there was also traffic in Prineville on Highway 26 heading into a festival event. Officials said there were 800 cars an hour and the back-up was about 30 miles from the event.

Crook County officials urged people to avoid traveling Thursday and Friday due to “extremely heavy traffic.”

ODOT urges early eclipse travel, seeks to dispel rumors

8/10/2017 (Permalink)

Central Oregon Eclipse 2017

SALEM, Ore - ODOT is warning last-minute travelers they could miss it all if they wait until Monday, Aug. 21 to hit the road. The total solar eclipse that morning will likely be the busiest traffic event in Oregon history. Eclipse fans must be in place well beforehand or risk getting stuck in traffic, the agency said Friday.

Here's the rest of their latest status update:

Post-eclipse travel may present even more problems. With hundreds of thousands of vehicles on the road at the same time, the trip home may be the most difficult part.

ODOT’s advice? Arrive early, stay put and leave late. This is NOT a game day: Please treat the 3-hour eclipse as a 3-DAY event.

Travelers have a shared responsibility to keep themselves, their passengers and other travelers safe.

Here’s the truth to dispel four rumors ODOT wishes we could launch into a black hole:

  1. ODOT is NOT planning to close any highways. Traffic may do that all by itself, but ODOT doesn't plan to, unless it’s a short closure for emergency response.
  2. ODOT is NOT planning to turn any highways into one-way roads. The staff required to perform that safely is not available.
  3. ODOT is NOT prohibiting big-rig traffic in Oregon. We are restricting one specific kind of truckload—over-width loads. But all other kinds of trucks can continue to carry interstate commerce in Oregon—or you wouldn’t get your gasoline, food, eclipse paraphernalia and other things you expect during that time.
  4. Rest areas will be open, but they are NOT available for camping.

ODOT will make regular, frequent updates to www.TripCheck.com and 511. We will use our social media accounts (facebook.com/OregonDOT and twitter.com/OregonDOT) to report road conditions, but they may not be staffed 24/7. And we will keep local media up to date so they can report travel time and road condition information.

ODOT will have crews posted at strategic locations along critical travel routes to help keep motorists mobile and safe.

But it still comes down to you. Plan to have a good time in Oregon viewing the eclipse. Plan ahead, so you will.

Visit http://www.oregon.gov/ODOT/Pages/Eclipse.aspx for eclipse information.

Dumpster Sizes In Cubic Yards?

8/7/2017 (Permalink)

Dumpster Sizes: How SERVPRO of Bend Decides On Which Size Dumpster To Use

SERVPRO of Bend uses many tools so we can provide our customers with excellent services. At most jobs where we are required to remove a large amount of debris, we use a dumpster to safely dispose of waste material. Many customers ask how we decide on which size of dumpster to use. Here are some instructions on how we determine what size of dumpster we use on a job.

A cubic yard is the volume of a cube with a length, width and height of one yard (3 feet or 36 inches). You can easily calculate cubic yardage by converting all three dimensions of an item into yards and multiplying them. For example, if you have debris that is 9 feet long, 3 feet wide and 12 inches tall, you have one cubic yard of material. Here’s how it breaks down:

  • Given that 3 feet is equivalent to 1 yard, 9 feet equals 3 total yards in length.
  • The width is easily measured as 3 feet equals 1 yard in width.
  • Given that 12 inches is equivalent to 1 foot, 1 foot equals 1/3 of a yard in height.

Multiplying the three dimensions, once converted to yards, will give you the total cubic yardage of your debris. In this case, 3 yards x 1 yard x 1/3 yard equals a single cubic yard.

While calculating cubic yardage will not always be that simplistic, especially for materials like concrete, gravel and dirt, having some understanding of how to do so can go a long way in filling up a dumpster.

An easy way to answer “How much is a cubic yard?” is to compare it to common items you’ve seen and used. The most popular example of this is equating cubic yards to pickup trucks. In this case, the typical full-size truck bed can hold between 2-3 cubic yards of material. That means a 10 cubic yard dumpster can hold at least three pickup truck loads (depending on the weight of your debris).

Here’s what our other common dumpster sizes can hold in terms of truck loads:

  • 20 cubic yard dumpster – Equivalent to about six pickup truck loads.
  • 30 cubic yard dumpster – Roughly equivalent to nine pickup trucks of debris.
  • 40 cubic yard dumpster – Can hold about 12 pickup trucks of materials.

It may also be beneficial to think of a cubic yard in terms of wheelbarrow loads, as it’s a great tool to bring materials into your container. Typically, 9-12 wheelbarrow trips are equivalent to one cubic yard of material. Keeping this in mind can help you estimate cubic yards as your project progresses.

If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to call SERVPRO of Bend at 541-385-7044.

Naming a Tropical Storm

8/7/2017 (Permalink)

Since 1953, Atlantic tropical storms had been named from lists originated by the National Hurricane Center. They are now maintained and updated through a strict procedure by an international committee of the World Meteorological Organization.

There are six lists that are used in rotation and re-cycled every six years, i.e., the 2017 list will be used again in 2023. The only time that there is a change in the list is if a storm is so deadly or costly that the future use of its name on a different storm would be inappropriate for reasons of sensitivity. If that occurs, then at an annual meeting by the WMO committee (called primarily to discuss many other issues) the offending name is stricken from the list and another name is selected to replace it. Several names have been retired since the lists were created. Here is more information the history of naming tropical cyclones and retired names.

If a storm forms in the off-season, it will take the next name in the list based on the current calendar date. For example, if a tropical cyclone formed on December 28th, it would take the name from the previous season's list of names. If a storm formed in February, it would be named from the subsequent season's list of names.

In the event that more than twenty-one named tropical cyclones occur in the Atlantic basin in a season, additional storms will take names from the Greek alphabet.

Mold: Causes and Growing Conditions

8/7/2017 (Permalink)

Molds are found everywhere, and can grow on almost any substance when moisture is present. They reproduce by spores, which are carried by air currents. When spores land on a moist surface suitable for life, they begin to grow. Mold is normally found indoors at levels which do not affect most healthy individuals.

Because common building materials are capable of sustaining mold growth and mold spores are ubiquitous, mold growth in an indoor environment is typically related to water or moisture and may be caused by incomplete drying of flooring materials (such as concrete). Flooding, leaky roofs, building-maintenance or indoor-plumbing problems can lead to interior mold growth. Water vapor commonly condenses on surfaces cooler than the moisture-laden air, enabling mold to flourish. This moisture vapor passes through walls and ceilings, typically condensing during the winter in climates with a long heating season. Floors over crawl spaces and basements, without vapor barriers or with dirt floors, are mold-prone. Some materials, such a polished concrete, do not support mold growth.

If you have questions about Mold or any other possible hazard in your home, feel free to call SERVPRO of Bend at 541-385-7044.

How SERVPRO of Bend Assesses Mold

8/7/2017 (Permalink)

The first step we do in assessing mold is to non-intrusively determine if mold is present by visually examining the premises; visible mold helps determine the level of remediation necessary. If mold is actively growing and visibly confirmed, sampling for its specific species is usually unnecessary.

Intrusive observation is sometimes needed to assess the mold level. This includes moving furniture, lifting (or removing) carpets, checking behind wallpaper or paneling, checking ventilation ductwork and exposing wall cavities. Detailed visual inspection and the recognition of moldy odors are used to find problems. SERVPRO of Bend focuses on areas where there are signs of liquid moisture or water vapor (humidity), or where moisture problems are suspected.

If you suspect mold in any structure, call a firm that is certified in Mold Identification and Remediation, such as SERVPRO of Bend.

Types Mold Sampling

8/7/2017 (Permalink)

Types of samples include air, surface, bulk, and swab. Air is the most common form of sampling to assess mold levels. Indoor and outdoor air are sampled, and their mold-spore levels compared.

Air sampling often identifies hidden mold. Surface sampling measures the number of mold spores deposited on indoor surfaces, collected on tape or in dust.

Bulk removal of material from the contaminated area is used to identify and quantify the mold in the sample. With swab, a cotton swab is rubbed across the area being sampled, often a measured area, and subsequently sent to the mold testing laboratory. Final results indicate mold levels and species located in suspect area.

Multiple types of sampling are recommended by the American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA), since each has limitations; for example, air samples will not identify a hidden mold source and a tape sample cannot determine the level of contamination in the air. If you need to take air samples of a structure that may have mold, SERVPRO of Bend recommends calling a certified Industrial Hygienist before performing any work on the dwelling.

If you have any questions, you can talk to one of our AMRT certified technicians at 541-385-7044.

Fungal Growth Phases

8/7/2017 (Permalink)

From the time a spore or a hyphal fragment germinates to form a colony to the time the fungus dies, there are a number of growth phases. Although these phases have been determined under laboratory conditions, it is possible that the same occur in nature. In nature the duration of each phase would be determined by the environmental conditions including other competing micro-organisms.

  • Lag phase
    Once the growth conditions become favorable for the fungal propagules (i.e., viable spores or mycelial fragments) to germinate, new transport systems must be induced before growth commences. Thus growth starts slowly and accelerates gradually. This phase is referred to as the lag phase.
  • Exponential or log phase
    Exponential growth occurs only for a brief period as hyphae branches are initiated, and then the new hypha extends at a linear rate into in-colonized regions of substrate. The biomass of the growing fungus doubles per unit time. As long as the nutrients are in excess growth remains constant during the exponential phase.
  • Stationary phase
    As soon as the nutrients are depleted or toxic metabolites are produced growth slows down or is completely stopped. The biomass increases gradually or remains constant. During the stationary phase, hyphal growth stops and, in some molds, cell differentiation occurs, resulting in spore formation. During this process nutrients are transferred from the vegetative mycelium to the developing spores. The spores are dispersed by air movement to other areas of the building where they can start new mold growth once the conditions for growth are favorable.
  • The death phase
    During the death phase, the mycelium eventually dies off. The death phase is usually accompanied by breakdown of the mycelia through self-digestion. Some fungi form spores by fragmentation of the hyphae

Bend Area Habitat seeks volunteers for El Salvador build trip

7/14/2017 (Permalink)

BEND, Ore. - Join Bend Area Habitat for Humanity on a build trip to Santa Ana, El Salvador, December 2-10, 2017. Bend Habitat has spots available for volunteers who want to have an amazing experience in a different culture and help low income families at the same time!

This is your opportunity to have an experience of a lifetime. Volunteers will help build a concrete block home for a Habitat family who will purchase it. Volunteers will have the opportunity to work alongside the future homeowners, learn about the local culture, try new foods and more. No experience or skills are necessary. Ages 18 and older are welcome or 16 and older with adult supervision.

The team will be led by two staff from Bend Area Habitat for Humanity as part of a larger Habitat for Humanity Global Village community of building projects across the world.  Get your hands dirty on the work site, meet families whose housing situations have been improved with Habitat’s help, experience the country like an insider and do it all alongside a team of like-minded volunteers. Help Habitat to make the world a better place to live.

The trip will include 5 days of building as well as opportunities for cultural experiences including; museum and historical tours, beaches and more. The cost is $1,500 per person plus airfare. Cost includes all in-country costs for transportation, lodging, food and cultural activities.

For more information on this amazing trip, contact Amber Morey, amorey@bendhabitat.org, 541.385.5387, ext 106


7/3/2017 (Permalink)

Have a wonderful and safe 4th of July.

Please remember to thank those who help this country remain safe.

If you're wondering what to do in Bend this 4th, here are some options,

Old Fashioned July 4th Festival

Enjoy the holiday with your friends and family at the Bend Park & Recreation District’s Old Fashioned July 4th Festival.  It’s a day filled with old-fashioned fun & games, food and festivities – you won’t want to miss out!

Make a day of it: Begin at 8:00 am in Drake Park with the annual Lion’s Club Pancake Breakfast then cruise to downtown Bend by 9:00 am with your dog, llama, wagon, bicycle or stuffed animal for the popular Bend Park & Recreation District Pet Parade, brought to you by Bend Pend Express. The parade kicks off at 10:00 am sharp and circles through downtown for 1.5 miles.

After the Pet Parade, head back to Drake Park between 11:00 am – 4:00 pm to enjoy the Festival with live music, local artisans and delicious food. Don’t forget to cruise through the expanded Kids & Family Area brought to you by the Law Offices of Warren John West where kids of all ages will be entertained with FREE old fashioned fun and games

Meth Lab Cleanup can be Hazardous

6/20/2017 (Permalink)

Suspected Meth Lab

Meth Lab can be a complicated and extremely dangerous hazard. SERVPRO of Bend provides Cleaning and Restoration Services for properties that may have been used as a meth lab.

Bottles of paint thinner, drain opener or muriatic or other acids are strong indicators that someone has been making meth, as are propane tanks or other heat sources used to cook the drug. Sinks stained red by phosphorus, chemical smells and powdery residues left in glass cookware are also telltale signs.

Building materials and furniture may absorb contaminants and can give off fumes. Meth remains are very dangerous to the health and well being of occupants or future occupants of a property requiring an extensive cleanup process.

If you have any questions if your property was used as a meth lab, we recommend you first call the authorities. They are professionally trained to review the signs of a meth or any other type of drug lab.


SERVPRO of Bend Sewage Cleanup Services

6/20/2017 (Permalink)

Sewage Cleanup

SERVPRO of Bend is proud to be certified in Biohazard and Sewage Cleanup.

When it comes to sewage damage, the job of a sewage damage restoration specialist is far more serious than simply removing waste and odors and restoring your home to its former state.

In reality, our seasoned professionals are charged with an extremely vital task: Making sure you and your family remain safe from the potential health risks associated with sewage damage. There are many different health problems that could result from sewage damage, which is one of the biggest reasons why the sewage damage cleanup process should almost always be handled by a professional organization like SERVPRO.

Here are some of the ailments and diseases you could face if you don’t call on a sewage damage expert to handle your home’s cleanup:

  • Hepatitis A, which is an acute liver infection that afflicts more than 10 million Americans each and every year.
  • Salmonella, a bacterial infection that causes symptoms like nausea, diarrhea, stomach cramping, vomiting and weakness. If left untreated, salmonella can even lead to more serious diseases, such as typhoid fever.
  • Bacillary dysentery, which is a type of dysentery caused by interaction with harmful bacteria. Dysentery also causes diarrhea, nausea, vomiting and so forth, and can be extremely taxing on the body if immediate medical care is not sought.
  • Intestinal infections. In addition to the aforementioned ailments, there are other types of intestinal infections that may be sustained from contact with raw sewage.
  • Skin infections. When sewage comes in contact with exposed skin, a painful or itchy rash could be the result.
  • Eye infections.
  • Respiratory infections. This is of particular concern if the sewage problem is left untreated, as water damage can easily lead to mold growth, and mold releases spores that can be harmful or even fatal when inhaled by living organisms.

If you have any questions regarding Biohazard or Sewage cleanup, give us a call at (541) 385-7044.


Oregon Couple Falls Ill After Purchasing an Undisclosed Meth House

6/20/2017 (Permalink)

Meth Lab Cleanup

A young Oregon couple and their baby who fell desperately ill after moving into a newly purchased home have discovered that the house is a former meth lab that has been emitting highly toxic fumes ever since they moved in.

The couple bought a foreclosure property in Klamath Falls in the summer and though they recognized it was a fixer-upper, could never have predicted the traumatic events that would follow.

Within a matter of days, they began experiencing problems with breathing and by week three of their occupancy, , had been struck with agonizing sores, migraines and nose bleeds.

Buying the home 'as is', they were informed of their responsibilities for detecting lead paint and asbestos hazards and chose not to bother with an inspection that would only point out superficial repairs anyway.

Neither brokers warned them of any drug activity on the property so armed with paintbrushes and an optimism the family moved into their new home.

Information regarding the history of a foreclosed property routinely falls through the cracks by the time the bank or government agency has reached the point of foreclosure.

If you feel that a property you occupy was used as a meth or other drug producing lab, call your local authorities.


SERVPRO of Bend Takes Lead in Cleaning Homeless Camp in Deschutes County

6/20/2017 (Permalink)

Homeless Camp

SERVPRO of Bend along with a homeless advocacy group, veteran outreach and the Bend Police Department assisted in cleaning up a homeless camp that had been expanding on private property for over a year.

The property became hazardous when it was found that many hypodermic needles and sewage were found on the property. After providing over 3 months of communication to the individuals of whom were camping illegally on the property, SERVPRO of Bend was able to start the cleaning of the camp.

All residence of the camp were provided with information of where they could go for assistance.

SERVPRO of Bend cleaned all of the hazardous materials from the property and posted no trespassing signs to identify the property as private.

The residence were appreciative of how caring the transition from the camp to the private property went and thanked all involved for their understanding of the situation.

Disaster Recovery Profile for Your Commercial Property

6/19/2017 (Permalink)

If you are a business owner that operates out of a commercial building or an owner of a commercial property, keeping up-to-date on maintenance can sometimes seem overwhelming. At SERVPRO of Bend we provide a free service to commercial properties that minimize interruption if a disaster, such as a water or fire event happens one of your properties.

The SERVPRO Emergency Ready Profile provides critical information, such as shut-off valve locations, important areas within the facility, and priority contact information needed to begin a quick and successful recovery from whatever could happen.

As a free service to you, we will catalog all this important information into a Disaster Recovery Profile for all of your properties. Once all the information is captured, SERVPRO of Bend will provide you with a digital copy of your facilities information via our Mobile App/Web Portal.

When the worst happens, you will be better prepared. If you would like more information, feel free to call me at (541) 385-7044


SERVPRO Emergency Readiness Profile Helps Identify Key Areas for Building Maintenance

6/19/2017 (Permalink)

Building Maintenance on a commercial property can be made easier by identifying possible issues with the property before they become hazardous. This isn’t a detailed list, but Here are some helpful tips from SERVPRO of Bend on how to consistently maintain your commercial property:


Check for hazards that might have occurred over night, especially after a severe storm.


Monitor relative humidity in all areas of the building as an indicator of possible moisture issues. The most obvious is an accumulation of moisture on the inside of the windows.

Check HVAC thermostats, humidistats and other control systems.


Inspect HVAC air filters as recommended in the operations and maintenance manual.

Check all HVAC vents, hoses and especially filters for debris or obstructions.

Check drain pans and condensate drains, especially if your building provides cooling systems.

Check rooftop drains to ensure there is no debris hindering the drainage

These are some, but not all of the maintenance that is required on commercial properties. If you have questions, SERVPRO of Bend is here to help.

Call us today and ask about our free, Emergency Readiness Profile that provides an electronic copy of all your critical systems. Call Us Today to schedule and appointment, 541-385-7044. 


SERVPRO of Bend Sponsors AHMA Golf Event

6/19/2017 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Bend, along with SERVPRO of Yamhill and Tillamook Counties were sponsors of the Affordable Housing Management Association (AHMA) of Oregon golf event.

It was a wonderful opportunity to meet with community leaders who strive to make a difference in their communities.

AHMA is a statewide, trade association providing continuing education and advocacy to the owners, management agents, and housing project management staff and HOME-financed apartment housing for low income seniors, families, and people with disabilities.

1,500 new apartments on the way in Bend, Oregon

6/19/2017 (Permalink)

The housing crisis in Bend may soon have some relief.

Applications to build apartment complexes rose from nearly nothing between 2004 and 2013 to about 1,000 units proposed in the past 1½ years in June. Applications for more than 500 more have been filed in the last few months.

The surge in applications is still lagging behind the demand for new rental housing. The Central Oregon Rental Owners Association annual spring survey of rental vacancies and average rents in Central Oregon found an overall vacancy rate of 1.6 percent for large apartment complexes in Bend and 1.4 percent for those with five units or fewer.

Crook County jail construction hits snag

6/19/2017 (Permalink)

Engineers must redesign the foundation of the new Crook County jail before construction can begin because of softer-than-expected soil found at the construction site in downtown Prineville.

The Crook County Sheriff’s Office is shifting construction designs from a two-story facility to a one-story facility. However, the jail will be finished in time for its scheduled opening in December 2018.

Contractors became aware of the issue at the beginning of the year, after conducting a geological study to see if the ground could withstand the weight of the building. Typically, large rock and sediment mixtures harden the ground so it can withstand the weight of a large building, but the ground underneath the new jail location is a mixture of sand and sediment.

The ground needs to be reinforced with geopiers to firm up the foundation, a project costing between $400,000-$500,000. Geopiers are drilled holes in the ground filled with concrete, used to reinforce a shallow foundation. The Crook County Sheriff’s Office plans to remain under the $17 million budget and sought out other cost-saving adjustments to pay for the fix

Million-dollar deal for Historic Redmond hotel

6/19/2017 (Permalink)

A $1 million deal between the city of Redmond and a California investment firm could revive the New Redmond Hotel, a historic downtown landmark vacant since 2005.

The Redmond City Council, acting in its role as the Redmond Urban Renewal Agency, agreed Tuesday to spend $1 million toward renovating the 89-year-old hotel. Alpha Wave, an Orange County, California, based hotel investment group, will then come up with the remaining funds for the purchase and renovation work involved in the $5.25 million project.

The 43,500-square-foot hotel, located at 521 SW Sixth St., is one of the largest buildings in downtown Redmond.

The second and third floors have 48 rooms that have been empty for more than a decade.

Biohazard Cleanup

6/19/2017 (Permalink)

At SERVPRO of Bend, we understand when a tragedy occurs; dealing with the aftermath can be distressing. When the unthinkable happens, we’re here to help.

Our technicians are trained and specially equipped to deal with the cleaning and reconstruction of a property after a death or serious injury. We comply fully with all OSHA, EPA, and Oregon Health Authority requirements.

Call today if you have any questions about our services, (541) 385-7044


Renovating with Green Perspective: Tips for Keeping an Eco-Friendly Mindset

6/16/2017 (Permalink)

Renovating with a green perspective presents a unique set of considerations and challenges. However, for those passionate about taking charge of their effect on the environment, doing so is well worth the effort. If a budget allows, focus on including green systems and materials into the structure of your home. While these types of additions may come with a larger cost upfront, they have the largest environmental and financial impact over time.

With a little forethought, green renovations can come out just as stylish as their traditional counterparts. Not to mention they come with the added benefit of helping the environment

We utilize a combination of skilled in-house personnel and fully licensed subcontractors to get your job done quickly and correctly the first time.

SERVPRO of Bend, CCB#203503

Tips for Finding and Using Reclaimed Wood for Home Decor

6/15/2017 (Permalink)

Reclaimed Wood mantel from Shaniko, Oregon

Tips for Finding Reclaimed Wood

Reclaimed wood is increasingly being specified and used in in Central Oregon lodgings of all types, whether in flooring, doors, mantels, paneling, menu covers or other fixtures or accessories. Many of our customers request information on reclaimed wood. Here are some tips and information about finding and reclaiming wood.

Best Type of Structures to Reclaim

Look for homes built between 1910 and 1920 for the best wood. That’s really the sweet spot in terms of desirable woods because of the harvesting of old growth forests. Old-growth wood is trees/lumber that was grown naturally in vast virgin forests in the 1800’s. By 1940, however, most of this lumber was depleted.

  • Look for homes and sheds rather than barns. Barns are great for an intensely rustic look, but “Barn wood typically was a cheaper wood. It tends to be more uneven, and is better suited for exteriors, or interiors where the owner wants a heavy rustic feel.”
  • Look for structures that are still intact, or mostly intact. What is the condition of the roof? If a structure is falling down, or the roof is gone, most of the wood inside is more likely to be rotten. An old farmhouse with an intact, pristine tin roof is an excellent find.

Recommended Tools Needed to Harvest Old Lumber

With any structure, Safety is always first. If a structure doesn't look structurally sound, then a professional should be consulted before attempting to reclaim any of the structure. If the structure is save, here are some tools needed to harvest old lumber:

Nail Kicker. A nail kicker is a pneumatic tool that looks a lot like a nail gun. Rather than shooting nails, it shoots compressed air at the head of a nail, forcing it through the lumber. That way your saws, drills and other tools won’t hit a buried nail and destroy your saw blade or cause serious damage to you or your tools.

  • Crowbars. An assortment of crowbars, from small to large, will help you get into tight spots and get the leverage you need to remove even the most stubborn planks.
  • Hammer. Most folks have a good hammer, and even if you don’t, it’s not a huge financial investment, but it will help you free both tin roofs and wooden boards from their foundation.
  • Metal detector for wood workers. These metal detectors can pinpoint a nail, piece of metal, bullet, barbed wire or other metal debris in the wood to the exact location.

Using reclaimed wood, and galvanized metal, is easier and more cost effective than most homeowners realize. Besides the more luxurious look and feel of the wood, there’s just the fact that you’re living with a piece of history – whether it’s a tobacco barn, an old mill, part of a southern plantation or mountain cabin.

5 Cleaning Apps To Simplify Spring Cleaning

5/19/2017 (Permalink)

from you. 

Tody: Motivate yourself (and your family) to clean more often with this smart app. Create cleaning tasks with frequency, and the app will tell you when things are overdue and when something was last cleaned (no cheating!). Each family member can actually track the chores they’ve done (see who’s slacking), and cross them off the to-do list (is there anything better than crossing items off a list?).

Think Dirty: Spring cleaning isn’t just about cleaning up the house, it’s also about cleaning up your life in general. Do your cosmetics have any toxic chemicals? How about your shampoo? Simply scan the products in the app and read the dirty meter. If any of your products get a rating of 10, it’s time to get rid of it. Think Dirty does all of your dirty work for you!

RescueTime: We’re all guilty of spending too much time on social media, and RescueTime holds you accountable by breaking down how you spend your time (a little shocking at first!). It lets you set goals, and shows you how much time you’re actually spending on social. Put yourself on ‘parental controls’ and block certain sites if you’ve been on them for long. I can’t lie, I’ve definitely had to block Facebook from my day at various times! 

The Fridge: The fridge is definitely one of my favorite apps! It lets you record what you have in your fridge and pantry, and it will let you know when certain foods are about to go bad (crazy game-changer!). Oh, and the app will even recommend recipes to make with the ingredients listed. Sold! 

Post-it Plus: As much as we all love sticky notes, they can start to drive you a little crazy. With Post-it Plus, you can snap a quick pic of all your stickies, and save individual memos within the app. This is a great way to declutter, and keep things paperless. It also looks super cool, so that’s a plus!

If you need help with Spring Cleaning, call SERVPRO at 1-800-SERVPRO.

Simple Ways to Keep Your House Clean

5/16/2017 (Permalink)

Simple Ways to Keep Your House Clean

If you are living a very busy lifestyle that you do not have the time to maintain the drill of making your house clean, you should hire cleaners employed by companies since they offer very comprehensive cleaning services specifically to homeowners and organizations. Cleaning companies like SERVPRO of Bend are committed to providing highly professional services that include household chores. You are assured that you can get an excellent service for money with their flexible service at a very low-cost.

Below are tricks that cleaners will do to ensure your house remains clean always:

Ensure Your Bed Is Made

The best action to take is to employ cleaners from cleaning companies that will be servicing your house daily. The cleaners will ensure that your bed is made neatly. The bed is the most important place to keep neat as it will reduce chances of any harmful organism from hiding in between the blankets and sheets ensuring that you live in a very safe environment.

Wipe Your Bedside Table    

You might forget to wipe your bedside table each morning either because you have a very tight schedule or because you are a lazy individual. Your cleaner will ensure that your bedside table is wiped spotless clean so as to make your bed look tidy. This is very important as it gives your room a clean look which gives a good impression to any visitor who might enter your room.

Clean Your Dishes

Most people are afraid of washing dishes even if they have a dishwasher. There are two different types of cooks: those who clean while they are cooking and those who cannot do the latter. Employ cleaners who will clean your utensils daily and leave your kitchen sink clean and sanitized with upmost perfection.

Wipe Your Cooking Surfaces

Failing to wipe your cooking surfaces is very hazardous to your health as it will act as an excellent breeding place for disease-causing organisms. Worry no more as house cleaners are just the right people for this kind of work. They will ensure that your countertops and cooking surfaces are wiped to ensure your kitchen is spotless leaving no breeding ground for bacteria.

Do Your Laundry    

If you have the habit of throwing the clothes that you’ve on a chair making your house living room look filthy, then the best action to take is to employ a cleaner. The cleaners will do your laundry, dry the laundry then fold it for you and if there are clothes that will need to be hanged in your closet they will do the same after ironing the clothes making your closet look neat and attractive.

In conclusion, cleaners that are practically employed by companies are the best option you should consider to do your household chores. The cleaners will offer a flexible and affordable service that will satisfy all your requirements. They are highly-trained and well – experienced cleaners that even fully vetted and most importantly, insured to suit your peace of mind

Fiery demonstration shows new home items burn faster, deadlier

4/26/2017 (Permalink)

Bend firefighters put on a dramatic demonstration Tuesday that showed how quickly modern home furnishings can reach a fierce burn emit toxic smoke, compared to the materials used 30 or so years ago -- giving you far less time to escape alive or without serious injury.

In a grant-funded demonstration, similar to one done on Today's Rossen Reports in January, Bend Fire and Rescue set up two similar mock living rooms, one with a sofa and other furnishings you can buy today and the other with 1980s-vintage items. Both rooms' furnishings were donated by Bend Area Habitat for Humanity ReStore..

The modern-style room took less than four minutes after igniting to "flash over" and emit thick, toxic smoke from the synthetic materials such as polyester.

"The fuel we are putting in houses now is a lot more flammable. It burns faster. It burns easier and it burns hotter," said Bend Fire & Rescue Battalion Chief Dave Howe. "The smoke is more toxic, and it gives you a lot less time to get out of the house." 

Deputy Fire Marshall Cindy Kettering explained how the heavier-weight, natural fibers, cotton and wool in the "legacy furnishings" burned a more slowly, and did not put out the toxic chemicals from the modern furnishings, which took six minutes to be fully consumed, that's actually longer than the time you might face if fire breaks out in your home or apartment.

"Typically, the average family has only three minutes to get out of their house," Kettering said. "That's why smoke alarms are so important."

"In the old days, you probably had enough time to grab a bucket of water and throw it on a fire and knock it down," Howe said. "You don't have that time now. You have to get out within 3 to 5 minutes, and the house is going to be well-involved, with that kind of fuel -- and it just burns so much hotter."

The best way to survive, firefighters say, is to have working fire alarms and make and practice an escape plan with your family, just in case a fire or other disaster does strike.

Time to Check Your Smoke Alarms

3/20/2017 (Permalink)

Spring is the perfect time to check your smoke alarm batteries.

In reported home fires in which the smoke alarms were present but did not operate, almost half (47%) of the smoke alarms had missing or disconnected batteries. Nuisance alarms were the leading reason for disconnected smoke alarms.

Test all smoke alarms at least once a month. Check your manufacturers web site to get more information on the proper testing and function of your smoke alarm.

Most smoke alarms have a test button so you can make sure that the smoke alarm battery is functioning. 

There are two kinds of alarms. Ionization smoke alarms are quicker to warn about flaming fires. Photoelectric alarms are quicker to warn about smoldering fires. It is best to use of both types of alarms in the home.

For more information on smoke alarm safety, you can contact your local Fire Department or organizations such as the National Fire Prevention Association (nfpa.org)


Fire causes $50,000 damage to log home west of Bend

3/6/2017 (Permalink)

BEND, Ore. - A fire that broke out in the roof area of a two-story log home west of Bend Thursday evening caused about $50,000 damage before crews could stop it, officials said.

A passer-by noticed smoke coming from the roofline of the home in the 16000 block of Skyline Drive, said Deputy Fire Marshal Jeff Bond. He alerted the occupant, who was unaware of the problem.

Crews found the fire was in the roof structure, along the front eaves of the roof. Bond noted the home has a vaulted ceiling and no attic in that area.

Firefighters halted the spread of the fire, he said, but had to open up the roof structure to reach the deep-seated portion of the blaze. There was some smoke and water damage inside the home.

The exact cause of the fire was under investigation. Losses were estimated at $40,000 to the structure and $10,000 worth of contents.

Ice Dams and Hidden Damage

1/24/2017 (Permalink)

Infrared photo of hidden ice dam damage


Ice Dams form when snow or ice  accumulates on the surface of your roof, causing a “dam” at the edge of an in-insulated part of a roof, such as an overhang or eve. As the heating system heats the home and attic space throughout the day, snow and ice begin to melt from the heated areas and drips off of the roof.

Though beautiful, icicles form and begin to build up ice on the edge of the uninsulated part of the roof. Beneath this top layer water runs down into the gutter and then refreezes then continues over time to cause a large amount of ice build up over the top of the gutter. Water then starts to pool on your roof and seep back under your shingles, metal roofing or any other roofing system. 

As the ice melts again, it seeps into your attic and eventually comes through areas of the structure, resulting in water damage. This can cause damage to drywall, insulation, and framing materials. It can also be an incubation point for mold inside the wall cavity or external walls, ceiling, and even the attic. It can even potentially cause dry rot to the framing materials and reduce the structural integrity of the structure. Wet building materials can start to have a strong musty odor as well.

Ice dams can cause a large amount of damage to a commercial or residential structure. They can cause mold damage and even dry rot. If ice builds up too much it can even rip off rain gutters from the weight of the ice.

Here are a few easy preventative measures to reduce the potential for ice dams:

1.Check the attic for proper insulation. Building code requires a minimum of 14 inches deep of insulation in the attic.
2.String waterproof electric heat tape through your gutters to keep them from freezing and building up with ice.
3.Keep the snow off of your roof. If snow is building up on your roof, get it shoveled off to eliminate the melting of the bottom layer.

It is a really good idea to carefully and safely remove icicles from overhangs and eves. This will not only help prevent ice dams but also prevent any danger to kids or neighbors walking beneath the roof. Icicles can become very heavy and can hurt someone very badly if they fall.

If you have any questions about ice dams, water damage or mold feel free to call us at 1-800-SERVPRO.

Oregon flood concerns rise as memory of 1996 disaster lurks

1/16/2017 (Permalink)

If you lived in northwest Oregon in 1996, this week's weather and the forecast of what's to come may feel ominously familiar.

In late January of 1996, just like last week, heavy snowfall blanketed the region. Then a week-long cold snap set in, just like it did over the past few days.

In the first week of February 1996, an atmospheric river of moisture took aim at the state, bringing with it warm temperatures that melted the snow, and catastrophic flooding quickly followed suit.

On Saturday, the National Weather Service said a similar atmospheric river -- the meteorological term for a warm, moisture-rich storm system -- was headed our way so it appeared that all the pieces were in place for a repeat.

"With the heavy snowfall we got last week, added to the heavy rain we're expecting, the potential for impactful flooding is high," Will Ahue, a meteorologist with the weather service, said Saturday.

Unlike 1996, however, the region's largest rivers -- the Willamette and the Columbia -- aren't predicted to surpass flood stage and, weather being as unpredictable as it is, no one is sure yet exactly where the jet stream will make landfall and exactly how much rain it will drop.


When the rains came in early February of 1996, they were carried on a warm jet stream from the tropics. That warm air sent snow levels soaring and accelerated snowmelt in the mountains. The mix of rain and snowmelt inundated nearly every body of water in the region and sent rivers to flood stage and beyond in a matter of hours.

Eighteen of Oregon's 36 counties were declared disaster areas as Corvallis, Oregon City, Portland and other communities along the Willamette River were overwhelmed with water at levels not seen since the Christmas Floods of 1964.

At least eight people were killed, including an 8-year-old girl who drowned when she slipped into a culvert on her way to collect mail at her home in Scio. Another 21,000 were evacuated.

In Oregon City, the river flowed at such a torrent that Willamette Falls all but disappeared in the deluge. Water lapped at the sidewalks of RiverPlace in Southwest Portland and came within inches of cresting the harbor wall in downtown.

Some 40,000 sandbags and 600 plywood boards were deployed along the river in what came to be known as "Vera's Wall" after then-mayor Vera Katz.

The flooding was severe enough that President Bill Clinton visited Portland in the aftermath and commended the efforts of its citizens in helping fend off the flood from downtown.

"If you look at this wall behind us, it seems to me that it is a symbol of what our country does when everybody pulls together and works together and forgets about their differences and focuses their attention and their hearts and their minds," he said.

Prevent and Respond to Flooding

1/16/2017 (Permalink)

Prevent and Respond to Flooding

Be prepared to deal with flooding in your area by following these suggestions before the storm hits, once flooding has occurred and after the waters recede.

Before the storm

Prevent flooding problems

  1. Keep storm drains clear of leaves and debris by raking or sweeping materials away from the drains. Drains near street corners and low areas of streets and parking lots are particularly key.
  2. Dispose of fallen leaves and other yard debris properly - in compost areas, gardens, or take to the landfill.
  3. Direct downspouts to at least 10 feet away from your home or business and clear gutters of any debris.
  4. If you're in an area where flooding is known to occur, keep sandbags on hand and put valuables in a safe place.
  5. Make sure your insurance policy covers flooding.

Prepare for flooding with family members or business associates.

  1. Figure out the safest route from your home or business to safe ground. You may have to leave in a hurry so make sure everyone understands the plan and agree on a meeting point just in case people get separated. Don't forget about your pets.
  2. List all valuables in your home or business, including all personal property. Keep the list in a safe location.
  3. Put supplies of canned food and drinking water, medicine, and first aid supplies in a safe and accessible place, away from flood waters. Include flashlights, radio, extra batteries and cooking equipment.
  4. Fill up your gas tank. Keep food, water, flashlights and medications in your car.
  5. If you have lawn furniture or other items outside your home or business, put them inside.

When the water begins to rise

  1. Monitor radio and TV stations or the National Weather Service for updates, particularly for your area.
  2. If local officials advise evacuation, then evacuate quickly and safely. You may be directed to go to a specific location. Please follow instructions.
  3. If water begins to rise around your home, evacuate to higher ground or a shelter, even if officials have not advised evacuation.
  4. As you travel, watch for washed-out roads, areas where streams or rivers may be flooding the area, and for downed power lines. Also assess low areas, such as dips in the roadway, or areas below water level. Do not attempt to drive over a flooded road. Turn around and drive another way.

After the flood

  1. Drinking water can become contaminated by material carried by the flood to wells, and clean up is important to prevent illness from mold and mildew.
  2. The Health Department recommends that anyone using water from a well in a flooded area should disinfect the water by heating it to a rolling boil for three to five minutes, then let cool before drinking. Water used for brushing teeth, washing dishes, or food requires the same treatment as drinking water. An alternative method of disinfection is to place eight drops of household liquid bleach into a gallon of water if the water is clear, or 16 drops of household liquid bleach into a gallon of water if the water is cloudy. After adding the bleach to the water, let the mixture stand for 30 minutes. Otherwise, bottled drinking water should be purchased from a local market.
  3. Once the flooding has receded, chlorination and flushing of the well is recommended. If you decide to test your water for the presence of bacteria, the testing should be done by a certified laboratory to determine if bacteria levels are safe for human consumption.
  4. Also after the floods, check for moisture on walls, floors, carpets and furniture. The dampness can support mold and mildew, which may cause asthma and other problems. To prevent mold growth, remove as much moisture as possible immediately after a flood. Dry the inside of your home by opening windows and doors and warming the house at least 15 degrees higher than the outside temperature. Mop up any standing water from floors. If furniture, clothing and other items have been dampened by floodwaters, remove them.
  5. Hand washing is important during clean up to prevent illness. Wash your hands frequently even if you wear gloves. When the only water for available is contaminated, wash your hands with soap and water and then use an antibacterial hand sanitizer.
  6. Protect yourself during clean up by wearing gloves and boots. Check with your medical provider to be sure your tetanus vaccine is up-to-date. A booster is needed every 10 years.

If you have any questions regarding Flooding or other water damage, feel free to call SERVPRO of Bend at 541-385-7044.

Central Oregon hit with Snow Storm Affecting Bend, Redmond, Sunriver, Madras, and La Pine

1/10/2017 (Permalink)

Winter weather has triggered another round of school cancelations in Hood River County and much of Central Oregon.

Another strong storm began hitting the High Desert early Tuesday. The National Weather Service forecast calls for 5-to-9 inches of new snow in Bend by the evening.

In the Cascades, the forecast for areas around Santiam Pass to Government Camp called for 7-14 inches of snow.

The Bend-La Pine, Crook County, Redmond and Sisters school districts all closed schools, along with Central Oregon Community College and Oregon State University-Cascades.

The National Weather Service says a snowstorm hitting central Oregon Tuesday, Jan. 10, 2017, could drop 5-to-9 inches of snow on Bend by the evening.

Fire Prevention: Heating your Home or Business Safely

12/22/2016 (Permalink)

Winter in Central Oregon has finally arrived this week.  Now is a great time to consider the safety tips that you could implement in your home or business to help prevent a fire.

Did you know that 32% of home heating fires are caused by space heaters?  Also, more home fires occur during the winter months than any other time of the year. When using a space heater, make sure that it is in an area where there are no obstructions and loose, possibly flammable items are plenty of distance from the source of the heat.

The team at SERVPRO of Bend wish everyone a safe and warm winter season.  Stay warm, but most importantly, stay safe.

Frozen Pipe Prevention and Handling

12/20/2016 (Permalink)

Frozen Pipes

It can happen to anyone — just that one time you forget to protect your home’s plumbing system from freezing, and wake up to flooding in your home.

Make sure you avoid the hassle and expense that frozen pipes can bring by using these tips:

Keep water moving: Water that’s moving will freeze at a lower temperature than water that’s still. Even minimal movement of water through your pipes can prevent them from freezing, so leave one faucet dripping a bit during a hard freeze. Plumbers recommend turning on the faucet that’s farthest from the main water feed into your home.

Don’t turn off the heat: If you plan to be away from home for a few days while there’s a chance of sub-freezing temperatures, set your thermostat to no lower than 65 degrees.

Turn off outdoor faucets: Disconnect garden hoses and make sure that no water is left inside the faucets or in any exposed part of the pipes running to it. You can also place covers on outdoor faucets.

Open cabinet doors: Allow warmer air to circulate around the pipes under your sinks by leaving cabinet doors open. This is especially important if pipes are located near an exterior wall.

Add insulation: Insulation is a simple and relatively inexpensive way to protect your pipes. Foam tubes for this purpose are readily available in hardware and home-improvement stores. Use insulation on pipes that are near exterior walls or windows or in unheated garages and basements, which are the most vulnerable to freezing.

Locate the shut-off valve: You don’t want to be frantically searching for your shut-off valve if you do have an emergency. Make sure you know where it is and that it’s fully operational before potential problems arise.

Keep your plumbing system in good condition: A leak may be your first clue that a pipe is susceptible to bursting. Have a professional plumber inspect your plumbing and repair any problems right away.

What if a pipe has already frozen?

If a freeze does catch you by surprise or you believe you have a frozen pipe, shut off the water to your house first. If you can easily access the pipe, a blow dryer (not a blow torch) aimed at the frozen spot is one way to thaw it safely, but only if you don’t have to stand in water to do so. If a pipe has burst and you have flooding, move any items in your home to a higher level, but don’t risk harming yourself by wading too long in freezing water.

Call on a qualified professional.

The best way to ensure that your plumbing system is properly protected from freezing is to contact a professional Contractor, such as SERVPRO of Bend at 541-385-7044.

SERVPRO Medford Donates FIT-5 Fire Knockdown Tool to Local Fire Department

9/29/2016 (Permalink)

MEDFORD, NEW YORK--(MARKET WIRE) -- City officials and fire professionals from the Medford Fire Department gathered at the Medford Fire Department this weekend, where SERVPRO of Medford, a leading franchisor in the cleanup and restoration industry, presented the FIT-5 to the Medford Fire Department.

After learning about the FIT-5 and its role in helping fire departments in the region save lives and properties, Dave Kluger, President of SERVPRO Medford, made the decision to donate a FIT-5 to equip his local fire department. "As a community based organization with national recognition, we feel it is our responsibility to support our neighborhood and our local fire departments," said Kluger. "We are pleased to contribute to our community's fire safety by donating a FIT-5 to the Medford Fire Department."

"We are very appreciative of this generous donation by SERVPRO," said Fire Chief Frank Rivera of Medford Fire Department. "From what I have heard the FIT-5 is a device that can be a tremendous asset to first responders; we are looking at purchasing more FIT-5's in 2009 to outfit our other vehicles."

Brian Lynch of US Fire Tech, the local ARA Authorized Dealer, was instrumental in working with SERVPRO of Medford on their donation. "It is great to see that local organizations like SERVPRO of Medford are playing an active role in supporting their local fire department," said Lynch. "I look forward to working with more community organizations across New York to keep our communities fire safe."

ARA Safety's FIT-5 is a hand-held fire suppression device that when deployed, emits a chemical aerosol to interrupt and knock down a fire. Through quick fire suppression, the device can reduce temperature from 1,000 degrees to less than 300 degrees Fahrenheit in less than 15 seconds, making interior attack safer for first responders.

Water Damage Restoration: 10 Things You Have to Do to Repair a Flooded Basement

9/27/2016 (Permalink)

If you’ve found yourself in this situation, first of all, you have our sympathy. But this is no time to mope. We’ve got work to do, and time is of the essence. Here are 10 things you’ll need to check off your list to get your basement back in order.

Call in the Professionals

Sometimes, it pays to enlist the help of a professional. If you feel out of your depth (no pun intended) with any flood-related repairs or preventative measures, don’t hesitate to call an expert. Just make sure to research any potential hire’s reputation, bond and insurance status, and references before signing on the dotted line. A good measure for a professional is to make sure they are certified through the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) in Water Restoration. You can check if the company you call is certified by clicking here: IICRC.org

Shut Off the Electricity

First things first, we’ll need to make sure we don’t risk getting electrocuted. If the water depth is anywhere near the height of the outlets, then don’t risk making your way downstairs until you’re certain that the electricity is off. And don’t rely on a power outage for safety – the electric company could bring it back online at any moment.

Depending on the severity of the flooding, you may just need to shut off the basement breaker, or you may need to have an electrician fully disconnect your home from the grid. When in doubt, consult a professional.

Get Rid of Standing Water

Once you’ve eliminated the risk of electric shock, it’s time to get rid of any standing water in your basement. If the flooding is relatively minor, you might be able to get the job done with buckets or a wet-dry vacuum. For larger floods, it may be necessary to rent a gas-powered pump.

Dehumidify the Environment

Even after you’ve gotten rid of all the standing water, there’s still going to be plenty of added humidity in your basement, and that can cause mold, mildew, and a host of other problems. Purchase or rent a dehumidifier or two to get rid of all the excess moisture.

Remove Damaged Household Goods

If you’re like many homeowners, then you probably use your basement to store all sorts of things – sleeping bags, tents, extra sheets and blankets, and seasonal decorations. Some of this stuff may be salvageable if you can dry it out quickly enough. Other items may be a lost cause.

Either way, you’ll want to sort through any belongings that got wet during the flood and either dry them out or get rid of them. The last thing you need is to have a bunch of moldy old blankets lying around.

Check for Structural Water Damage

At this point, your basement should be relatively empty, so you’ll be able to get a good look at any structural damage. You should take particular note of wet structural supports, drywall, insulation, and framing wood. Once these materials get wet, they become a haven for mold spores. Assess the damage. Salvage what you can and make arrangements to have the rest replaced or repaired.

Replace Electrical Components

Trying to use waterlogged electrical items is a recipe for danger. It’s probably a good idea to get rid of any electrical appliances that were exposed to flood waters, along with switch boxes, light fixtures, and outlets.

Don’t Let Mold Invade Your Home

Mold: the scourge of basements everywhere. If you’ve gotten rid of all the water, properly dehumidified your basement, and disposed of objects that can’t be cleaned or dried, then you’ve lessened your odds of having to deal with a mold invasion. Still, when you consider the possible costs and health issues associated with a full-scale mold problem, calling in mold prevention professionals may be a smart idea, just as a precaution.

Call Your Insurance Company

Depending on your insurance policy, a portion of your flood damages may be covered. If you’re not sure, review the provisions of your policy or call your insurance rep to learn more. If you happen to have good flood coverage, it could save you thousands.

Eliminate the Source of the Flood

What’s worse than dealing with a flooded basement? Dealing with it more than once. After getting everything back in order, try to prevent the flooding from recurring. There are a variety of flood-prevention measures that range from simple to elaborate. Your issue might be solved by something as simple as patching cracks in the foundation or cleaning your gutters.

5 Home Improvements You Should Tackle in Early Fall to Get Your Home Prepared for the Cold Weather

9/21/2016 (Permalink)

There’s something about autumn that energizes many people, getting them to take on projects and plans that they may have been putting off for a while. So while you’re busy making plans for the winter months ahead, make sure you also take the time to take care of some home projects that are best done during the early fall months. These five projects are under $2000 each, and can help make your home more comfortable for the months ahead.

Furnace Repair

You don’t want to wait until the cold winter months to turn on your furnace and find that it isn’t working. That’s why early fall is the best time to schedule your furnace repair. This off-peak time often costs less than it will in January, and gives you plenty of flexibility to schedule the technician at your convenience. Waiting until winter to tackle this project will mean you pay a higher rate in labor fees, and you risk your furnace breaking down when you need it the most.

Install a Portable Generator

If you live in an area that sees severe weather during the fall and winter months, you may want to invest in a portable generator to help keep your home running in case of a power outage. Portable generators come in many sizes so you can find the right fit for your home. Install one in early fall before costs go up during the colder months, and ensure that you’re ready for the first outage of the year. Once the snow begins to fly, you can expect the demand for generators to go through the roof driving up prices and limiting availability. Waiting too long could mean that you run the risk of not finding one at a reasonable price or that you need to go without power in the event of a storm.

Mold Remediation

After a warm, humid summer, mold is a very common problem in a lot of areas. Basements, attics, and bathrooms are all particularly susceptible to mold growth. Before you spend more time indoors in the winter, you’ll want to ensure that any mold is removed before it can cause health problems. Once the weather dries out in the early fall is the best time to get this done. Mold that began in the summer months will continue to grow right through the winter, so the early all is the best time of year to tackle this job, while the air is dryer and the mold hasn’t had as much time to spread

Install Gutter Guards

During the autumn months leaves and pine needles drop from trees at a very fast rate. These can collect in your gutter, clogging them up and forcing water back onto your roof. A gutter guard can help prevent this by stopping the debris from entering your gutters. Take care of this issue in early fall when it isn’t too hot to work on your gutters, but before the leaves start falling to get the best results. Wait too long and you may have to pay a higher cost in labor due to demand and the fact that your gutters will need to be cleaned prior to installation.

Clean Your Roof

Your roof can become the home to a lot of dirt and debris during the summer months, including algae, mold, moss, and leaves. The more debris that lands on your roof, the bigger the problem, because things like moss and leaves can trap water beneath them, weakening your shingles. When snow falls, this problem will become worse, potentially causing leaks. September or October is the best time of year to clean your roof; it’s not too hot to work, and you’ll want to get the bulk of the debris off before the leaves begin to fall, making it harder to clean.

Get Your Home Ready for Fall

September and October are great times of year to work on your home. The heat and humidity are over, but the cold winter months are still in the distance. Take care of these five projects as early in the fall as possible to get the best results and savings

10 Things You're Not Doing To Prepare For A Disaster

9/8/2016 (Permalink)

1. Storing Enough Food.

2. Setting aside Cash.

3. Have an Out of Area Contact.

4. Storing Enough Water.

5. Have a Plan Ready for Your Family.

6. Haven't Figured Out Where You'd Go (Including Pets).

7. Your First Aid Kit is Incomplete or Nonexistent.

8. You are not Trained in CPR or First Aid.

9. You're not Practicing for a Disaster.

10. Your car is not in tip top shape.

After a Fire: Focusing on Indoor Air Quality

9/6/2016 (Permalink)

After a fire, there is a rush of activity in an effort to return the damaged spaces to pre-fire condition. Since fire and smoke leave such an extensive and complex mess, all the attention and effort naturally focus on removal of the fire and smoke contamination, cleaning the salvageable items, and eliminating smoke odors. However, there is another aspect that is often overlooked – the addition of new contaminants during the remediation and rebuilding process.

Air Purifiers (Gaseous)

Air cleanup can be the most challenging aspect of remediation. There are a number of technologies available; some are relatively harmless while others, such as oxidation techniques, have higher potential risk especially when used in-situ.

Oxidation technologies all operate in essentially the same way. They initiate a chemical reaction that converts hazardous and irritating chemicals to a less harmful form, eventually decomposing them to carbon dioxide and water. However, the oxidation process affects all chemical compounds, even those that are relatively benign, and it often produces intermediate chemicals that may be hazardous or irritating.


Ozone-producing machines to eliminate odors and reduce VOCs have been in use for a long time. In recent years, increasing evidence indicates that the unintended side effects of ozone use far outweigh its advantages.

Ozone is a big concern in outdoor air since it participates in many of the reactions that produce components of ground level smog. It is a powerful oxidizer, meaning it reacts quickly with a wide variety of chemical compounds. This property is what makes it effective in addressing odor problems. However, this effect is not limited to the air. It can also damage surfaces, especially materials like rubber and paint, and it can produce a host of secondary reaction products like formaldehyde that can pose a significant health concern. Ozone by itself is also a strong respiratory irritant. The potential hazards of ozone machines make it one of the more challenging technologies to use, requiring special care in its application.

Hydroxyl Ions

Hydroxyl-based technologies also work by oxidizing materials, but it is a much milder process than ozone. Use of hydroxyl ion technology (e.g., photocatalytic oxidation) has been effective in converting compounds of concern to less hazardous chemicals without many of the concerns inherent with ozone. It does not typically cause a “weathering” effect, nor does it pose the level of potential health hazard that ozone does. Hydroxyl ions are generally considered safe to use since they perform the same air cleaning function naturally in outdoor air. Also, their life span is only a few seconds compared to the 24-48 hour life span of ozone, so hydroxyl ions do not build up in indoor air. However, this technology can produce secondary reaction products in the same way that ozone does, although typically at lower concentrations.

Cleaning Solutions & Solvents

The use of cleaning solutions is widespread in fire restoration, especially for porous items such as furniture, drapes, carpet, fabrics, etc. and semi-porous materials such as walls. These products contain powerful solvents that use a variety of chemical formulations, many of which are hazardous to use and can leave behind “toxic” traces. In addition to the solvents, many cleaning solutions contain additives that can be hazardous. These additives are used to adjust the viscosity, dispersal characteristics, increase shelf life, boost performance, cover unpleasant solvent odors, etc.

Thermal Foggers

Thermal foggers generate ultra-fine thermally activated droplets that are picked up by porous materials similarly to how they adsorbed the smoke odors, closely duplicating what occurred during the fire. Cleaning and deodorizing solutions of various types are available that can be disseminated using this technology. The same concerns about residues exist with thermal foggers as with other cleaning solutions and solvents, as well as possible application specific problems.

Building Materials

Just as with any construction or renovation, replacements for non-salvageable building materials (e.g., flooring, drywall, paint, cabinetry, etc.) bring additional contaminants into the building. In combination with lingering fire and smoke residue and cleaning material remnants, new materials can add significantly to the indoor contaminant burden. There is also a risk of re-contamination if the cleanup is not completed before repairing the building structure and replacing furniture and personal items.

The Take Away …

As with all products and technologies, it is essential to understand the purpose and use of remediation products, as well as their applicability in different situations. Awareness of possible unintended side effects will substantially reduce the number and severity of post-remediation problems.

Paint a Piece of Poster Board Instead of Your Wall to Test Out Colors and Finishes

8/22/2016 (Permalink)

Painting a little square of color on your wall is a good way to test out potential wall colorings, but you only get to see how it looks on that particular patch of wall in that particular lighting situation. To see how it would look in any part of the room, paint a piece of poster board and move it around.

This idea from Food 52 is super clever. Not only does it let you see how a color and finish looks in every single corner of a room, it saves you the trouble of having to go back and cover up colors that didn’t make the cut. You can also test out a whole bunch of samples at once, and move them from room to room if need be, making sure you pick the perfect shade for every wall in your home.

Housing Crisis Looms in Flood-Stricken Louisiana

8/19/2016 (Permalink)

With an estimated 40,000 homes damaged by deadly flooding, Louisiana could be looking at its biggest housing crunch since the miserable, bumbling aftermath of Hurricane Katrina a decade ago.

People whose homes were swamped by some of the heaviest rains Louisiana has ever seen are staying in shelters, bunking with friends or relatives, or sleeping in trailers on their front lawns. Others unable or unwilling to leave their homes are living amid mud and the ever-present risk of mold in the steamy August heat.

Many victims will need an extended place to stay while they rebuild. Countless others didn't have flood insurance and may not have the means to repair their homes. They may have to find new places altogether.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency, whose very name became a punchline during Katrina, said it will look into lining up rental properties for those left homeless and also consider temporary housing units.

The flooding that has struck the Baton Rouge and Lafayette areas has left at least 13 people dead. More than 30,000 have been rescued, and at least 70,000 have registered for federal disaster assistance. At the height, 11,000 people were staying in shelters, though that had dropped to 6,000 by Wednesday.

In a sign of the housing crunch, Livingston Parish officials are talking with FEMA about getting temporary housing for emergency and rescue workers. An estimated 75 percent of the homes in the parish of 138,000 residents were a total loss.

Those with flood insurance will be in a much better place to begin rebuilding — but there won't be many of them.

FEMA said more than 9,000 flood claims have been filed with the agency.

Routine Home Maintenance - What you can do after you move in.

8/17/2016 (Permalink)

Moving in to a new house can be exciting and stressful at the same time. To limit the stress and make sure your house less prone to water damage or fire damage, here is a list of some routine maintenance you can do to prevent future damage from being costly.

1. Change your filters

One of the most important things to remember is that you are responsible for certain routine maintenance items to keep your house functioning properly. These tasks tend to be relatively simple. For instance, many types of heating and air conditioning systems contain filters to remove dirt and dust from the air. A homeowner should change these filters when necessary.

2. Get rid of dust and dirt

Cleanliness is a factor that will make your home last longer and work better. Dust and dirt, if allowed to accumulate, can harm the finishes on blinds, cabinets, countertops, floors, sinks, tubs, toilets, walls, tiles and other items. If dirt does accumulate, make sure to clean it with a substance that does not scratch or damage the finishes.

3. Check your exterior

On the outside of your home, make sure that gutters and downspouts do not get clogged with leaves or other objects. The exterior of your house is built to withstand exposure to the elements, but a periodic cleaning will improve the appearance and, in many instances, prolong the life of siding and other exterior products.

4. Read your warranty

When you bought your home, you probably received a warranty from the builder on workmanship and materials. This warranty applies to problems related to the construction of the home, but it does not apply to problems that arise because of failure to perform routine maintenance. For example, if your roof begins to leak after six months because of faulty workmanship, your warranty would cover that. If you develop a problem because water backed up in clogged gutters that you should have cleaned, the builder is not responsible for repairs. Also, some items, such as appliances, may be covered by manufacturers warranties and are not the responsibility of the builder.

You should fully familiarize yourself with the terms of your warranty soon after you move into your home. With all the excitement surrounding a move into a new home, most people have little desire to curl up in front of the fireplace and read a legal document. Nonetheless, you should not wait to read your warranty until a problem arises. Set aside an hour to learn what your rights and responsibilities are from the outset.

If you Experience a Water Loss

8/15/2016 (Permalink)

Water Damage can be costly and is never convenient. If you experience a water loss, we recommend that you call a certified water restoration company to handle any size loss. This is especially true if you feel that the damage is more than you can handle. Often times, people feel that a small puddle in the middle of their floor isn’t much, until a few days later when they start smelling a musty odor…which usually results in mold. Here are a few things you can do to help reduce the amount of water damage to your property:

  1. Stop the flow of water. If the flooding has been caused by a burst pipe or a water heater failure, shut off the main water line for your home.
  2. Turn off the power. If your home is flooded, cut off the electricity and gas from the main source. This isn’t as essential for small leaks or puddles, but for large floods turn them off to be safe.
  3. Assess the damage. Before you begin your cleanup effort, first determine if rebuilding is even a worthwhile option. Take ample photos and other documentation to show the insurance company.
  4. Rescue your most valuable possessions. If you are able to, find and remove your most important items from the flooded area, such as heirlooms, money, jewelry, etc. Don’t spend too much time extracting and cleaning individual items, as the water is still doing damage to your home.

The more information you can provide to the restoration company and your insurance is extremely valuable to expediting the process of cleaning and repairing the damage

Plumbing Leaks

8/10/2016 (Permalink)

Plumbing leaks can be frustrating for customers to deal with, but they may not pick up the phone for services every time. However, informing them of how degenerative even a small leak can be is important.

Plumbing leaks are responsible for 3 trillion gallons of wasted water and $6 billion of property damage each year in the U.S.

The consequences of failing to detect or repair a leak in your plumbing are very serious. Wood and drywall can rot, a mold problem may develop, and your home's foundation could be compromised.

On the other hand, the cost to take care of a single leak is relatively low, averaging about $225-325 to find and fix it, a sum which may be covered (based on one’s policy), at least in part, by homeowner's insurance.

Leaks are easily fixable and easily preventable. It is important that any sign of water be looked at by a licensed professional.

Know When to Introduce Disinfectants

8/4/2016 (Permalink)

Know When to Introduce Disinfectants

In a situation where health concerns are elevated, there are typically three stages that impact cleaning. Stage 1 is when there is the potential for a public health concern in a community. Stage 2 is when there is a public elevated health concern in a community, and Stage 3, the most critical stage, is when the pathogen is infecting a specific property or properties. At each stage, cleaning frequencies should increase; introduce sanitizers and disinfectants at Stage 2.

There is no question that sanitizers and disinfectants are necessary in a Stage 2 or 3 alert. What we needs to be realized is that these are very powerful cleaning solutions, and in the United States, there are currently no EPA-registered disinfectants that are green-certified.  Because of this, the following precautions should be taken:

  • Make sure the disinfectant is designed to kill the specific pathogens causing the health concern. These will be spelled out on the product label.
  • Ensure cleaning personnel read and understand the label instructions, including dilution rates and surface dwell time to maximize product efficacy.
  • Use portion-control systems with concentrated disinfectants. This will help reduce environmental impacts and cost.

All of these measures represent the key to a successful Green Infection Prevention plan.

Fire Prevention - BBQ

7/29/2016 (Permalink)

When the warmer weather hits, there’s nothing better than the smell of food on the grill.

Three out of five households own a gas grill, which translates to a lot of tasty meals. But it also means there’s an increased risk of home fires.

Each year an average of 8,900 home fires are caused by grilling, and close to half of all injuries involving grills are due to thermal burns. While nearly half of the people who grill do it year-round, July is the peak month for grill fires followed by May, June and August.

Grilling by the numbers

  • In 2014, 16,600 patients went to emergency rooms because of injuries involving grills
  • July is the peak month for grill fires (17%), including both structure, outdoor or unclassified fires, followed by May, June and August
  • A failure to clean the grill was the leading factor contributing to the fire in one –fifth of all grill structure fires (19%). In 17%, something that could catch fire was too close to the grill
  • Leaks or breaks were the factor in 11% of grill structure fires and 23% of outside and unclassified grill fires
  • Gas grills contribute to a higher number of home fires overall than their charcoal counterparts

Molds in the Environment - Part 2

7/28/2016 (Permalink)

What areas have high mold exposures?

  • Antique shops

  • Greenhouses

  • Saunas

  • Farms

  • Mills

  • Construction areas

  • Flower shops

  • Summer cottages

    I found mold growing in my home, how do I test the mold?

    Generally, it is not necessary to identify the species of mold growing in a residence, and CDC does not recommend routine sampling for molds. Reliable sampling for mold can be expensive, and standards for judging what is and what is not an acceptable or tolerable quantity of mold have not been established.

    A qualified environmental lab took samples of the mold in my home and gave me the results.

    Standards for judging what is an acceptable, tolerable, or normal quantity of mold have not been established. If you do decide to pay for environmental sampling for molds, before the work starts, you should ask the consultants who will do the work to establish criteria for interpreting the test results. They should tell you in advance what they will do or what recommendations they will make based on the sampling results. The results of samples taken in your unique situation cannot be interpreted without physical inspection of the contaminated area or without considering the building’s characteristics and the factors that led to the present condition.

    If you have any questions about mold, SERVPRO of Bend is here to help. You can talk to one of our certified technicians to better assess your situation.

Molds in the Environment - Part 1

7/26/2016 (Permalink)

Molds in the Environment

What are molds?

Molds are fungi that can be found both indoors and outdoors. No one knows how many species of fungi exist but estimates range from tens of thousands to perhaps three hundred thousand or more. Molds grow best in warm, damp, and humid conditions, and spread and reproduce by making spores. Mold spores can survive harsh environmental conditions, such as dry conditions, that do not support normal mold growth

What are some of the common indoor molds?

  • Cladosporium
  • Penicillium
  • Alternaria
  • Aspergillus

Where are molds found?

Molds are found in virtually every environment and can be detected, both indoors and outdoors, year round. Mold growth is encouraged by warm and humid conditions. Outdoors they can be found in shady, damp areas or places where leaves or other vegetation is decomposing. Indoors they can be found where humidity levels are high, such as basements or showers

How can people decrease mold exposure?

Sensitive individuals should avoid areas that are likely to have mold, such as compost piles, cut grass, and wooded areas. Inside homes, mold growth can be slowed by controlling humidity levels and ventilating showers and cooking areas. If there is mold growth in your home, you should clean up the mold and fix the water problem. Mold growth can be removed from hard surfaces with commercial products, soap and water, or a bleach solution of no more than 1 cup of household laundry bleach in 1 gallon of water.

If you choose to use bleach to clean up mold:

  • Never mix bleach with ammonia or other household cleaners. Mixing bleach with ammonia or other cleaning products will produce dangerous, toxic fumes.
  • Open windows and doors to provide fresh air.
  • Wear non-porous gloves and protective eye wear.
  • If the area to be cleaned is more than 10 square feet, consult the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) guide titled Mold Remediation in Schools and Commercial Buildings. Although focused on schools and commercial buildings, this document also applies to other building types.
  • Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions when using bleach or any other cleaning product.

Specific Recommendations:

  • Keep humidity levels as low as you can—no higher than 50%--all day long. An air conditioner or dehumidifier will help you keep the level low. Bear in mind that humidity levels change over the course of a day with changes in the moisture in the air and the air temperature, so you will need to check the humidity levels more than once a day.
  • Use an air conditioner or a dehumidifier during humid months.
  • Be sure the home has adequate ventilation, including exhaust fans.
  • Add mold inhibitors to paints before application.
  • Clean bathrooms with mold killing products.
  • Do not carpet bathrooms and basements.
  • Remove or replace previously soaked carpets and upholstery.

12 Tips to Help Beat the Summer Heat

7/20/2016 (Permalink)

When sky-high temperatures don’t abate at night, the heat can interfere with your sleep patterns. First priority is to keep your famly and pets hydrated with fresh water.

There are also other tips to help you beat the heat this summer: 

  1. Freeze your pillow
  2. Run a Fan with the A/C On
  3. Place an ice bucket in front of a fan
  4. Scale Back on the Appliance Use
  5. Cross Ventilate
  6. Keep Doors Closed and Shades down to Keep Cool
  7. Run Your Ceiling Fan Counter-clockwise
  8. Circulate Basement Air

Tips During a Remodel

7/13/2016 (Permalink)

Allergies will most likely be triggered when construction dust is everywhere in your home during a remodel. Demolition and drywall sanding can cause airborne dust that can be hard to keep under control. If you are planning on living in your home during a remodel, you must be prepared for due diligence and what you are willing to tolerate.

Unless you are tearing your home down to the studs, most people who choose to live in their house during construction can survive the process with careful planning. Don’t wait until the job starts to assign your designated living space and get situated within your home. You also have to be prepared to get ahead of the dust before the remodel begins. Here are the ways I help contain the dust and keep my clients’ homes clean. Use these tips and pass them onto your general contractor.

1. Pack Like You’re Moving: Your house should be clean before the remodel begins. Get rid of everything except the things you want to keep. Pack like you’re moving. Wrap and store belongings such as knick-knacks in boxes, because if construction dust gets on them, they are a nightmare to clean. They will feel like new again once the remodel is complete and they are unpacked.

2. Create a Zone: During a remodel, homeowners and pets must stay away from the construction area. People often forget that a railing is not there anymore and they can accidently fall. For the safety of the homeowner, the work area should be blocked off. We create a zone by building temporary plywood walls with doors on them. We build a separate entrance so that the crew is not crossing paths with the residents and we also blow the dust off the workers clothes with an air hose before and after they enter the home.

3. Zip The Walls: Since the workers have to walk in and out of the room being remodeled during construction, I find that using a zipper instead of a tape entryway is better. We attach plastic sheets to painter poles and place a long zipper at the opening. This creates a re-sealable entrance and exit. The crew can enter the construction area easily through a zipper entrance and it will keep the dust contained in the work area. When the homeowner comes to check out the construction progress, we supply them with a mask and stop work immediately.

4. Set Up a Temporary Kitchen:
When doing a kitchen remodel from scratch, I help homeowners set up a temporary kitchen somewhere else in their home. I have seen people do this in the living room, den or garage. Set up a table with your microwave, toaster oven, toaster, coffee maker and a small refrigerator.

5. Broom Sweep Clean: Each day at the end of the job, we make sure that the rooms that were worked in are clean and spotless. We also clean as we move from room to room after completing the work. We use sawdust with light oil called ZEPs HD Sweeping Compound. This compound stops small dust particles from flying around while sweeping. We put it on the floor before we sweep. Once the dust is swept into a pile, it can be vacuumed with a Shop-Vac or shoveled away.

6. Spray Down The Dust: Once the sawdust in the house has been contained, we put it into buckets. When transferring the buckets to a dumpster or trash truck outside, dust can get everywhere as the workers walk through the house. It can also blow around in the air outside and get on everything, including a neighbors’ car. We take careful steps to contain it by using a fine mist spray pump to apply water on top of the dust after its put into the buckets.

Using Hand Sanitizer to Remove Sap From Your Car

6/24/2016 (Permalink)

Along with sketchy mechanics, speed limits and faulty O2 sensors, tree sap is your car’s worst nightmare. Once it has marred your otherwise pristine paint job, the stuff just won’t come off. The good news is that there’s actually an easy way to remove the plant excrement.

There are tons of products out there that promise to remove that pesky tree sap from your car’s paint. Some of them work, some of them are total garbage. But why waste your time with those when you can just grab some hand sanitizer from your local grocery store and call it a day?

1. Squeeze A Little Drop Of Hand Sanitizer Onto The Sap

2. Gently Rub The Sap With Your Finger

3. Dry It Off With A Cloth/Paper Towel

4. Wash The Spot With A Wet Cloth/Paper Towel And Dry It

It’s worth noting, though, that the sanitizer will remove wax.


Easy Home Upgrades

6/24/2016 (Permalink)

Whether you recently purchased a new house and are looking for ways to add your own style and personal touches or are looking to upgrade your longstanding home, it’s essential to add style and function when completing any home improvement project. From adding light and ventilation to updating your home’s safety, closets, facade or backyard, you can take advantage of these ideas to enhance the aesthetics of your house and improve its livability and capabilities.

There’s no better way to breathe new life into interior spaces than decorating with light. Velux Energy Star-qualified, solar-powered fresh air skylights bring natural light and ventilation into the home and carry a 10-year, no-leak installation warranty. Along with available solar powered blinds, the skylights operate by remote control, closing automatically in case of rain. Costs will vary, but a new solar skylight installation typically ranges from $1,800 to $2,400 after a 30 percent federal tax credit

What Renters Can and Cannot Change Around the Home

6/24/2016 (Permalink)

A home isn’t just a place to live, it’s a canvas for personal expression, a showcase for your unique style. But as a renter, you simply don’t have the carte blanche that homeowners enjoy.

Still, there are plenty of things you can do to spruce up your living space. Follow these tips and you’ll be able to make your rental feel like home sweet home, without getting into hot water with your landlord.

Check Your Rental Agreement

Before you start getting too excited about home improvement projects, it’s best to peruse your rental agreement to see what sort of alterations it allows. Some landlords are rather strict about what changes they will permit while others take a more laissez-faire approach.

Talk to Your Landlord

If your rental agreement allows you to do the projects you have in mind without consulting your landlord, then go right ahead and do them. If not, you may still be able to make improvements, so long as you discuss them with your landlord first.

You never know – your property owner might be willing to make an exception if you sit down with them and present the changes you’d like to make, especially if you can convince them that your improvements will bolster their property value.  You might even be able to convince them to deduct labor and materials from your rent

Quick and Useful House Cleaning Tips

6/22/2016 (Permalink)

Clean a Mirror

You don’t have to buy glass cleaners and paper towels to clean your mirrors.  Just some vinegar and an old newspaper is all you need to keep your mirrors shining as new. Your house will look cleaner if the mirrors are clean.

Rinse Your Plate

Cleaning plates is a tuff thing if its kept for some time un cleaned. I rinse my plate after dinner and have all my family members do the same and it makes washing plates so easy. It is a small and simple habit but makes a lot of trouble easier. I don’t like trying to wash dried food off of dishes, do you?

Cleaning the Oven

Does your oven get used every day?  Someday if you’re not using your oven, give it a quick spray of oven cleaner and keep it like that till the next day. Before you turn on your oven the next day, give it a quick wipe down. The baked on stuff comes off much easier than ever.

Cleaning the Microwave

Cleaning a microwave is easy. Fill up a cup of water and put it in there on high for a few minutes. The steam from the cup will loosen any stuck-on food, and then you can just wipe it away. It’s that simple.

Cleaning the Fridge

A fridge looks big and cleaning it looks even bigger. Follow my steps and the work will be a bit easier. First toss out any bad food. Then start with wiping down the top shelves and work down. Baking soda and water make a great cleaner and won’t leave your fridge smelling like

harsh cleanser. After you wipe out the crispers, line them with paper towels for easier cleaning next time. Cleaning the fridge was never this easy.

Cleaning your Bathroom

You can use lemon oil to shine the tiles of your bathroom. Lemon oil will also prevent mold and mildew. Use a false teeth bubbling tablet to avoid rings. Sometimes the problem with shower is that hard water gets build up there. Fill a plastic bag with vinegar and place it over shower head to remove hard water buildup. You can use alcohol to  shine bathroom faucets.

Toilet Hygiene

One of the most hated things to do but fortuitously, it can be done very fast if you follow the way I do, few steps to follow to get it done quickly. First pour some cleaner in the bowl to soak. Then wipe down the seat and outside of the bowl with an antibacterial wipe or spray cleaner. After that scrub the bowl with a toilet brush and finally wipe down everything again with a dry cloth to make it shine.

Bathtubs can be cleaned too EASILY

To clean bathtubs here are a few things that may help:

Use a cleanser that will foam or bubble. This allows you to “soak” your tub or shower, even if it’s a vertical wall. Get a scrubber that fits your needs, a long-handled one or an extra firm one, pick a scrubber that will be easiest for you to use. Moreover, spraying the tub or shower down after each use can make deep cleaning easier.

10 Unexpected Places Where Mold Creeps Into Your Home

6/22/2016 (Permalink)

Mold Behind Cabinetry

The Smith’s didn’t notice the mold and mildew smell in their home until they came home from vacation.

“What’s that smell?” John asked.
“Mildew. Maybe mold. Maybe I left some clothes in the washer,” Kathy said.

After an hour-long search, the couple couldn’t find a leak. So they called John’s brother David — a plumber. He came right over.

“The number one rule for checking for mold and mildew?” David said, “If it uses water, chances are it’s going to leak.”

These are 10 places many homeowners overlook when checking for mold:











As a homeowner, if you take the appropriate precautions and are vigilant about upkeep, you should be able to avoid mold, or catch it at it’s outset. While mold can be a huge problem in homes, even causing health issues, it is easily preventable

Got Mold? Here Are Some Things To Know

6/22/2016 (Permalink)

Just the idea of mold can cause panic for a homeowner. It can create structural issues and seriously affect your property value. But how do you even know if you have mold and how should you proceed if you do?

What causes mold?

“Mold is a fungus that’s an integral part of the earth’s bio-mass,” Cascone says. It consumes and breaks down organic material, like leaves, wood, and plants. “The problem,” he says, “is when mold colonizes in our buildings, consumes our building materials, and puts spores into our indoor air.” This happens when there’s a moisture problem since mold can’t grow without water. “When there’s enough moisture or humidity for colonization, that’s when humans begin to have problems.”

What are the most common causes of mold in homes?

The unfortunate reality is that problematic mold can really pop up anywhere that isn’t dry. Cascone says it sees it most often in attics due to roof leaks, poor air circulation, and bathrooms that ventilate into the attic rather than outdoors; crawl spaces because earthen or gravel flooring allows moisture and spores to rise from the soil; basements that have flooding from foundation leaks or plumbing leaks; and interior living spaces with leaks, bad windows, and high humidity.

Is there a chance I have mold and don’t even know it?

Cascone says there are four criteria that you should be aware of:

  1. A musty odor is caused during the colonization of some fungal species, but can come and go depending on moisture levels and air current changes.
  2. If you have water staining or if building materials have discoloration that’s spreading over time… that may be a sign of mold.
  3. Mold spores that were already present will begin to colonize just 48 hours after a water event.

What is the removal process like?

The remediation process (providing a remedy to a known mold issue) involves three things, Cascone says. Killing the fungi, removing the dead mold, and protecting against future mold growth/colonization. In order to do this, Cascone has a multi-step process that he uses:

  1. Contain work area and apply negative air pressure HEPA air purifiers to prevent cross-contamination.
  1. Mist EPA registered anti-microbial to suspend and kill mold spores.
  1. Remove affected building surfaces.
  1. Bag and dispose properly
  1. Treat cavities/underlayment and dehumidify.
  1. Abrasively remove dead loose mold.
  1. Apply EPA registered protective sealer.
  1. Perform clearance testing.
  1. Remove containment materials.

Why is it important to hire a professional?

Cascone says, “It is always a good idea to consult with an honest mold professional.” If there’s an issue you can tackle yourself, they should give you recommendations about how to do so. “Honestly though,” he says, “it may be a bit too much for a homeowner to keep safe while preventing cross contamination, killing mold, removing it and preventing new mold from growing.” That’s when a professional is necessary, so you can get things done properly.

At SERVPRO of Bend, we are certified in Applied Microbial Remediation through the IICRC.

What are the costs typically associated with mold removal?

“Remediation in attics and crawl spaces run about $2 per square foot of surfaces treated,” Cascone says. “When treating attics and crawls, it is important to treat ALL decking, joists and attic trusses. As for remediation that involves demolition of drywall, paneling, flooring, ceiling tile, cabinets, disposal containers, cleaning and sanitizing HVAC ducts, etc., it may be $4 to $6 per square foot.”

Family Fire Escape Plan

5/12/2016 (Permalink)

In 2014, there were an estimated 367,500 reported home structure fires and 2,745 associated civilian deaths in the United States

Fire can spread rapidly through your home, leaving you as little as one or two minutes to escape safely once the alarm sounds. A closed door may slow the spread of smoke, heat and fire. Install smoke alarms in every sleeping room and outside each separate sleeping area. Install alarms on every level of the home. Smoke alarms should be interconnected. When one sounds, they all sound. Pull together everyone in your household and make a plan. Walk through your home and inspect all possible exits and escape routes. Households with children should consider drawing a floor plan of your home, marking two ways out of each room, including windows and doors. Also, mark the location of each smoke alarm

Toxic mold shuts down Oregon City fire station

5/12/2016 (Permalink)

OREGON CITY, Ore. (AP) — A Clackamas County fire station has closed down after toxic mold was found inside the facility, forcing firefighters to temporarily relocate.

KPTV-TV reports (http://bit.ly/1NlnprV ) that fire spokesman Steve Hoffeditz says medical response time for residents in Oregon City’s Hilltop District 16 should not be affected by the closure. The station’s five firefighters are being moved to another station in Oregon City a few miles away.

Fire Captain Andy Welks says the mold was discovered after he and some of his crew had been experiencing allergy-like symptoms and noticed a bad odor in the building.

Officials expect the Hilltop station to remain closed for at least another month while it undergoes inspection and the mold is removed

SERVPRO of Bend is now offering Continuing Education Classes!

10/10/2014 (Permalink)



Understanding Mold in the  
Restoration Industry
2 Credit Hours

Restorative Drying for Water Damage
2 Credit Hours

Food will be provided!


Environmental Center

16 NW Kansas Ave.

Bend, Oregon 97701

Please R.S.V.P. by

November 7, 2014



Cassie Walling

SERVPRO® of Bend

CCB 203503


SERVPRO has come to Central Oregon!

9/2/2014 (Permalink)

The owners of Spectrum Building & Restoration are proud and pleased to announce that they have purchased the local SERVPRO Franchise as a separate business venture. SERVPRO of Bend is ready to respond to your emergency service needs 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year as Central Oregon's newest mitigation contractor. Call 541-385-7044 and our professionals will provide you with a free consultation and estimate to determine how we can help.


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