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5 Tips for Preparing Your Business for Any Disaster

3/25/2021 (Permalink)

Hand completing Emergency Preparation List by Equipment Disaster preparedness is an essential part of your long-term success plan.

5 Tips for Preparing Your Business for Any Disaster

When you're planning all of the logistics for getting your business up and running, it's important to add "prepare for disasters" to your to-do list. Disaster preparedness is an essential part of your long-term success plan. According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, 25% of businesses don't open again after a disaster. Here are five things you can do to be prepared to face anything that comes your way.

1. Prepare to Prevent
Some disasters can be avoided. Conduct regular maintenance and inspections of your property and address any issues quickly. Other disasters, such as natural floods, hurricanes, and earthquakes, can't be avoided despite your best plans. Know the risks in Islamorada, FL, and prepare for those as best you can.

2. Protect Records
Don't leave records in a pile on your desk to deal with "someday." Use a physical safe that is water- and fire-proof or an online storage system that allows you to easily retrieve data from anywhere.

3. Keep Current Coverage
Check-in with your insurance company annually to ensure that your business preparedness plan is covered by the proper insurance policies. As your company grows, re-evaluate your needs and adjust coverage as appropriate.

4. Communicate Evacuation Plan
A disaster preparedness plan is only effective if it is widely known by your staff. Share your plan, practice it, and review it regularly. Ensure that it is a part of new staff orientation. Keep a current list of emergency contact numbers for each staff member in a safe place, as well as a second copy off-site or digitally.

5. Stay Up to Date
If it's been a few years since you last assessed your business preparedness plan, it's time for a refresher. Ensure that your plans are still relevant and up to date with the latest guidance. It's also a good idea to have the number of an emergency restoration company handy to get help as soon as possible in the event of a disaster.
Anything can happen to your business, but you can take measures to avoid lasting consequences. Disaster preparedness can help to solidify long-term success.

4 Things To Know About Home Fire Alarms

3/24/2021 (Permalink)

smoke moving towards a smoke alarm A fire alarm provides essential protection for your home.

4 Things To Know About Home Fire Alarms

No home should be without at least one fire alarm to alert all occupants of a potential fire. In recent years, these essential tools have undergone advances in technology that make them more reliable than ever. In fact, the National Fire Protection Association states that homes without working fire alarms are twice as likely to suffer deaths in a fire than homes with working alarm systems. While the choice of installing an alarm in your home in Big Pine Key, FL, is a simple one, it helps to know a little about your choices.

1. A Large Selection. You will find an assortment of fire alarms in stores, most of which will use the latest technology. All are designed to sound off in the case of an incipient fire, to save lives and to prevent fire damage. It is important to look at cost, area of coverage and ease of installation

2. Area of Coverage. A fire alarm system should be the right size for your home. Experts recommend coverage for each bedroom and each floor in the home. If you do not have an integrated alarm system, this means multiple alarms throughout the home. Most homes should have at least five fire alarms.

3. Ease of Operation. New smoke alarms are simpler to operate than in the past and require less maintenance. Most last in the range of 10 years, and there is no need to change batteries, making them effective in preventing smoke damage.

4. Ease of Installation. You should be able to install the units yourself in a matter of minutes. If you do opt for a more complicated system, it is best to hire a professional electrician.
A fire alarm provides essential protection for your home. In the case of property damage caused by fire, be sure to call a local fire restoration franchise to clean your home of the many effects of a home fire.

How To Handle a Flood and Mitigate Damage

3/15/2021 (Permalink)

Image of water hidden in between baseboard used a thermal imaging camera We are capable of finding hidden moisture in your property.

Four Steps To Mitigating Flood Damage Inside Your Home

Flooding can be a big mess for anyone, even if it seems like a small issue at first. The best way to keep flood damage from escalating in your home is to take immediate action. Knowing what to do and doing it quickly will prevent additional costly repairs in Tavernier, FL.

1. Stop the Water
If you find water in your home, figure out where the water is coming from. It could be as simple as a small leak under your kitchen sink, or it could be a burst pipe behind a wall. Either way, once you locate the source, turn the water off and fix the leak. This will stop additional water from coming into your home uninvited.

2. Contact Your Insurance
Depending on your policy, flooding may be a covered event. If the damage is covered and you are eligible to file a claim, find out what information your insurance provider needs, what the filing process looks like and how much time you have to file the claim.

3. Call for Help
Pipe bursts and sink leaks should not be taken lightly. If you wait too long to address the situation, it could intensify quickly. The initial leak can cause moderate damage and staining to carpets and furniture within the first few minutes. Within a few hours, water can seep into wood and cause flooring and furniture to swell. After a few days, any wood structures affected by the water can warp, crack and split. Calling a professional flood cleanup service is the best way to ensure the water is removed promptly and the area is thoroughly dried and disinfected.

4. Restore Your Property
You can begin kitchen repair, drywall replacement, and other restoration tasks once the water is removed and the area has completely dried out. Your water cleanup and restoration specialists can help return your home to its pre-flood condition.
If you find flooding in your home, the last thing you should do is wait. If you follow the four steps listed above, you will minimize additional damage and keep restoration costs reasonable.

Why Local Disaster Cleanup Is Fast and Effective

2/23/2021 (Permalink)

A businessman and a businesswoman smiling, Servpro logo, the phrase Ask Them Commercial clients know that SERVPRO is a preferred vendor for both national and local insurance companies.

Why Local Disaster Cleanup Is Fast and Effective

Commercial emergencies such as flooding, storm damage and fire often require a rapid response from a team of experts. When it comes to disaster cleanup, SERVPRO is the number one choice of most insurance companies. At any hour of the day or night, these pros are Faster to Any Size Disaster, outshining the competition in all of the following ways:

1. Locally Owned and Operated
When emergency water cleanup is needed in Summerland Key, FL, business owners want to work with a local company that has a good reputation. Supporting local businesses is a top priority for most business owners. Likewise, professional work and results are a major concern. Commercial business owners are more likely to use a water damage restoration company in their community such as SERVPRO that can boast these important credentials:

  • Trained professionals
  • Experienced staff
  • Proper equipment
  • Local management
  • Timely services

2. Nationally Recognized
Although SERVPRO branches operate at a local level, the brand and services are nationally recognized by the average commercial establishment owner who knows they are Faster to Any Size Disaster. With over 1,700 franchisees across the nation, there is no doubt that the company is considered the best in the business. Along with the well-known company name comes a reputation for dependability and unsurpassed disaster cleanup.

3. A Preferred Vendor for Most Insurance Companies
When working with their insurance provider, commercial clients know that SERVPRO is a preferred vendor for both national and local insurance companies. As business managers go to file an insurance claim for flooding, fire, mold, or other damages, they want to choose a restoration company that is recognized by their insurance provider and that gets the job done right.
As a locally operated facility, employees live within the community they serve. This means SERVPRO professionals can get to the disaster site more quickly to resolve the problem. Learn why these franchises are both trusted and revered by local clientele because of the ability to be Faster to Any Size Disaster.

Why Routine Plumbing Maintenance Is Vital for Your Business

2/11/2021 (Permalink)

two air movers placed on the floor, drying equipment on damaged area Commercial water damage in Brickell Key, FL.

If you own a commercial office building in Brickell Key, FL, routine plumbing maintenance can prevent costly repairs due to damaged pipes. Leaking pipes may lead to significant flooding, but other plumbing issues can also cause problems.

What Causes Pipe Damage?

Factors that compromise your building's plumbing system can include:

  • Advanced age
  • Poor insulation
  • Clogged lines
  • Unaddressed corrosion

Although some pipe deterioration and occasional backups are inevitable, many pipe damage consequences are avoidable by scheduling plumbing inspections that can reveal potential vulnerabilities.

How Can Inspections Save Money?
Discovering leaks as soon as possible after they begin can reduce the potential for significant damage and increase the chances that your business insurance policy will cover any losses. Leaking pipes can ruin carpets and upholstery, electronics and office supplies or walls and ceilings. Flooding from damaged pipes can also make surfaces susceptible to mold growth that costly remediation efforts must contain.
Insurance providers will likely not cover losses if pipe damage is due to inadequate maintenance, though they may cover flood damages from burst pipes. Still, contacting a flood restoration service to extract excess water as soon as possible after a flood is critical for reducing your business's monetary losses.

What Signs Indicate Leaks and Other Damage?
In addition to scheduling periodic plumbing inspections and repairs, it is helpful to know the signs that may indicate plumbing problems. Wet spots or stains on drywall, floor, or ceilings could mean a long-term slow pipe leak. Loud banging or hissing sounds when water is running can occur when pipes are loose or unstable. Unpleasant odors may be due to clogs in the sewer line that can ultimately strain your plumbing with excess force and cause pipes to break. If tangible signs of pipe damage do not exist, a higher than typical water bill could indicate that you have cracked or leaking pipes.
Damaged pipes causing floods can be a headache for building owners in Brickell Key, FL, but a flood restoration service can help clean up.

3 Ways To Prevent Mold at Your Business Property

2/2/2021 (Permalink)

Humidity control icons Monitor and control humidity levels throughout your building

Tips That Can Help You Protect Your Business

Mold can do serious damage to your Marathon, FL, business if it goes unchecked. Because most types of fungi tend to grow quickly in moist, humid environments, even the smallest instances of water damage could cause a considerable mold problem. Keeping a few preventative tips in mind can help you protect your business, employees and valued customers.


1. Monitor Humidity Levels
Mold growth tends to increase in humid areas, such as restrooms and in the employee kitchen. Mold does not require sunlight to grow or spread, so if mold happens to take hold here, it can grow unchecked until the odor it releases alerts you to the problem and by then, the growth could be quite large. Monitor and control humidity levels throughout your building and use ceiling or standing fans to prevent high humidity levels.


2. Do Not Delay Flood Repair
Water damage tends to occur most often during incidents of flooding, whether as the result of violent storms or something as simple as a water line break in the employee fridge. Despite the degree of damage, putting off repairs could lead to serious mold issues. If flooding is severe, you may want to call in a mold mitigation and removal service for assistance to ensure the job is completed correctly.


3. Store Documents Properly
One way to practice mold prevention is to store paper documents and records in a way that does not encourage fungi growth. Choose air-tight plastic containers with lids that snap down so moisture cannot affect the documents or hire a digitizing service to transfer paper records onto a cloud storage server. This can help you save space and reduce the risk of mold growth in your building’s basement or ground-floor storage room.
Water damage and high humidity levels can cause serious mold issues at your Homestead, FL, business. Knowing how to prevent its encroachment may help you protect your business and avoid costly repairs that might come with ignoring the problem.

3 Cleaning Requirements After a Residential Flood

1/14/2021 (Permalink)

Sandbags Outside Front Door Of Flooded House Home flooding in Design District, FL

Three Cleaning Tips to Remember if You Experience Home Flooding

Experiencing home flooding in Design District, FL, can be traumatic, and this is often compounded when you return home and realize the cleaning requirements that come in the aftermath of a flood. When you live in a flood-prone area, it's important to learn what you need to do to complete your flood clean and disinfect process.

1. Remove Contaminated Materials
Many household items can absorb floodwaters and become contaminated. Items such as furniture, rugs, and toys should be moved outdoors to dry. Some can be cleaned, but many typically need to be replaced:

  • Mattresses
  • Inexpensive furniture
  • Stuffed animals

The cleaning requirements are generally too expensive or time-consuming to be worthwhile for these items.
In addition, drywall that has been soaked with floodwater needs to be removed and replaced. Floodwater contaminants can remain in damaged drywall indefinitely, even after it has dried. This process can be made easier with the help of a flood damage restoration service.

2. Disinfect Solid Surfaces
Kitchens and bathrooms contain many hard surfaces that should be cleaned using a flood disinfectant. This is not limited to counter and floor surfaces. Be sure to clean any glassware, cooking tools, and other hard containers. Chlorine bleach is an excellent EPA disinfectant for many surfaces, but requirements vary by material. For example, bleach should not be used to clean metal, as it may discolor the surface.

3. Protect Delicate Valuables
It can be devastating to realize that cherished photographs and other important papers might have been destroyed in a flood. Some of these items may possibly be restored, so it is important to properly care for them quickly. Gather your valuable papers and carefully wipe them clean and dry. Freeze them in plastic bags to prevent additional damage from occurring until a professional can restore them.
Home flooding can be difficult to recover from. Knowing what are the cleaning requirements and how to properly care for your home and belongings in the event of a flood can help you get back on your feet more quickly.

Why SERVPRO is the Best for Commercial Cleaning and Commercial Damage Remediation?

1/10/2021 (Permalink)

Image of marble hallway with water cleaning vacuum on floor SERVPRO Water vacuum clearing up water damage

Did you know SERVPRO is not just for disasters such as floods, water damage, or fires in your home? We also help Commercial Businesses! SERVPRO employees are certified to clean and sanitize: Upholstery, Carpeting, Flooring, and other hard surfaces. SERVPRO is even certified to remove biohazard contaminants such as blood, urine, feces, and other things no one else wants to clean. Refresh your carpeting and office cubical- we also specialize in odor removal and deodorization! Additionally, SERVPRO is available after hours if services are needed when customers and/or clients are not present. SERVPRO means reliable, certified professionals will show up at your door. Please call SERVPRO of Brickell today for a free quote; we would be very happy to serve you on a reoccurring basis.

How To Determine If Your Water Damage Is Covered By Insurance

12/30/2020 (Permalink)

Completely flooded basement. It is visible line showing maximum water level higher than 7 feet. During any type of basement flood, there are professionals available to clean and restore your home

How To Determine If Your Water Damage Is Covered By Insurance

Finding flooded water in your basement is one of those events you hope to avoid during your lifetime. Water damage can be substantial and no Downtown Miami, FL, homeowner wants to pay for the associated repair and replacement costs. Fortunately, there are times when your homeowners' insurance covers water damage from a basement flood. Here is some information to help you determine if your flood may or may not be covered.


Sudden and Accidental Events Are Typically Covered
Many homeowners' policies will cover the expenses associated with water damage if the occurrence is sudden and accidental. Here are some examples of covered instances:

  • A water heater rupture
  • A pipe burst
  • A break in an appliance supply hose
  • Faulty plumbing


These are just some instances that are sudden and accidental. If you find water in your basement, contact your insurance company and explain the situation. Give your agent all the details and they will determine whether or not the incident is covered by your homeowners' insurance policy.


Gradual and Neglectful Events Are Typically Not Covered
A basement flood is typically not covered if the homeowner neglects to perform routine maintenance. One obvious example of when insurance coverage would not be in effect is a leaking faucet. Homeowners are responsible for maintaining their homes and associated appliances. While you can contact your insurance agent and explain the situation if it’s identified as poor maintenance on the part of the homeowner it most likely will not be covered.
It’s also helpful to understand that while some instances of flooding are covered by insurance, most insurance policies don’t cover the source of the problem. For example, insurance may cover the cost to repair damaged walls or flooring; however, it will not cover the cost to repair the broken washing machine.
Fortunately, during any type of basement flood, there are professionals available to clean and restore your home. Water restoration specialists are available to provide emergency service to homeowners.

How To Make Fire Restoration Easier

12/30/2020 (Permalink)

Golf car parked, a SERVPRO technician in a building performing restoration Fire damage restoration in Key Largo commercial building

How To Make Fire Restoration Easier

A fire can do major damage to your Key Largo, FL, business. Fortunately, following the three steps outlined below can help the fire restoration process go more smoothly, so you can get back to work quickly.


1. Contact Insurance Company and Document Damage
After the fire has been extinguished and everyone is safe, your first task is calling the fire insurance company and filing a claim. Follow all instructions your agent gives you, and be sure to document the damage thoroughly.


2. Secure Property
Before you or a certified restoration service begin cleaning up, it is important to secure the property. There may be broken windows and other openings resulting from either the fire or the extinguishing efforts. Board up or tarp over these areas to protect the property from inclement weather and prevent wildlife and trespassers from entering the building. If your commercial building is particularly vulnerable, consider installing a security fence for another layer of protection.


3. Prevent Further Damage
Unfortunately, water damage from the fire extinguishing efforts can lead to mold growth. Additionally, both smoke and soot are corrosive. Leaving any of these elements to sit can lead to further damage and the need for a more extensive fire restoration process. In some cases, insurance companies will not pay for damage that occurred after the fire was extinguished if they feel you did not take adequate steps to prevent it.
Dry up the water within 24-48 hours using pumps or wet/dry vacuums, and begin the soot and smoke cleaning process as soon as possible. Make sure you know what type of soot you are dealing with before you begin cleaning. Using the wrong cleaning solution or technique could make the damage worse.
By contacting the insurance company, securing the property, and preventing further damage, you have ensured that the fire restoration process will go as smoothly as possible. The more quickly you begin cleaning up, the more of your items you will be able to fully restore.