Feb 20, 2019
Is your home or office ready for the snow to melt? We have had quite the winter here in Grand Rapids, snow, followed by melt, followed by more snow… But the final snow melt is coming, and you need to be ready!
Here are some tips to minimize damage from melting snow, as the spring weather comes.
First, clear the snow that has piled up next to your building
During snow falls, we tend to just clear walkways and driveways, as snow piles up against our house or business. As melt approaches, you need to look at any snow that may melt towards your building. In particular snow on patios, decks, and around basement windows. If anything is sloping towards your house, that is the direction the melt will go.
Then check and clear gutters
Gutters are designed to move water away from your home. However, if they are clogged, that melt will go down the side of your house. Don’t forget to check the end of the downspout, the water needs to get out!
Test your Sump Pump
This is flood season, don’t wait till your sump pit fills up with water to find out your sump pump isn’t working… Clear out any dirt or debris that may be in the pit, and if your Sump Pump has a battery or generator backup system, make sure that is operational as well
Check your foundation walls for new cracks
With all the freezing and thawing, new cracks can form in your foundation walls. Seal these as much as possible.
Just taking a little bit of time to check and prepare for spring, can lead to a much drier, and calmer spring melting season. IF you do experience flooding, give us a call at Grand Rapids ServiceMaster (616) 988-4357 and our trained specialists can help you out!
Jan 4, 2019
According to FEMA, home fires occur more in winter than in any other season. In fact, heating equipment is the second leading cause of home fires, deaths and injuries in the United States each year. Winter home fires account for hundreds of deaths, and over 2 billion dollars in damage every year.
Here are some tips to prevent winter fires
Be careful with your space heaters
- 2 out of every 5 winter fires are caused by space heaters.
- Make sure the ones you use in your home have automatic shut-offs if they tip over
- Always place your space heaters away from everything else. Typically a 3 foot space is recommended around any space heater.
Keep an eye on your candles and other decorations
- keep candles at least 12 inches from anything flammable
- and three feet from your live Christmas tree
- and don't leave candles unattended if there are pets or small children in your home. The flickering flame is very attractive to them!
Keep an eye out for overloading electrical circuits
- particularly around Christmas, there is a tendency to plug too many light strings into one socket
- don't connect more than three strands of lights together
- Don't leave your holiday lights running all day or all night unattended
Practice fireplace and wood stove safety
- if you own a fireplace, use a screen, and keep the door closed at all times on your wood stove. The only time these should be open, is when you are adding wood, or stoking the fire
- have your chimney inspected regularly. A buildup of creosote can quickly lead to a deadly fire.
Don't become a statistic. Too many house fires happen in West Michigan because one of these simple practices is not followed. Be safe this winter!