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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.

Steps To Keep Mold Out of Your Rental Homes

12/23/2020 (Permalink)

Ruined wall due to pipe burst Busted pipe ruins wall in Homestead, FL

If you have rental units in Homestead, FL, you of course want these units to look their best and to offer a pleasant living space for your clients. Plus, this makes the rooms easier to rent and for a higher price. The presence of mold in a rental unit could turn off prospective customers and could even chase away current renters. The good news is mold prevention is relatively easy and shouldn't cost a lot of money. It begins with doing your best to prevent leaks or unwanted water in the apartment complex.

Easy Steps To Prevent Mold Growth

Following this simple checklist is a good way to make sure mold does not gain a foothold in your building. About every six months, going through these steps can help avoid fungus problems:

  • Quickly fix all plumbing leaks
  • Make sure the roof system is in good shape
  • Take care of water damage at once
  • Inspect areas for mold colonies
  • Stay alert to musty odors

One key to mold prevention is remembering that mold loves to grow in damp conditions. It can spread quickly, too, as microscopic mold spores are experts at moving into new areas. They can colonize new rooms in as little as 72 hours.

Successful Measures To Fight Mold
Mold is more difficult to deal with than mildew, which can often be wiped away with a good cleaning. Once mold has formed into colonies, it is usually best to work with a professional mold mitigation company in your area. A team of knowledgeable technicians can come to your building and develop a plan of action. They will address any moisture issues and then contain the mold with physical barriers and other methods. The technicians can use special disinfectants to kill the mold spores and then clean away the residue.
Avoiding mold in your properties is the best strategy. However, when mold prevention fails, a quality mold cleanup is the next step.

The Benefits of Setting Up an Emergency Profile for Your Company

12/23/2020 (Permalink)

The SERVPRO emergency ready profile Establish an emergency profile for your business

The Benefits of Setting Up an Emergency Profile for Your Company

Preparing for a disaster is the responsibility of every company. It's the smart thing to do as it strengthens the ability of a business to withstand a flood, a fire, or a powerful storm. There are many steps a company can take to better survive a catastrophe. One action is to establish an emergency profile. It doesn't take long to do and it has real benefits. The advantages of this approach are many and far-reaching:

  • A profile serves as an insurance policy
  • It provides peace of mind for owners and managers
  • It protects clients and employees
  • It can reduce the impact of a business interruption
  • It can minimize the damage from floods and fires
  • It can keep a company in business

What It Does
An emergency profile sets up a solid plan of action in the case of a disaster before it happens. The profile begins with an assessment of a company by SERVPRO technicians. There is no cost for the assessment. The goal of this action is to set up a concise document that contains all of the information necessary to respond to a problem. This includes facility information on the location of shut-off valves and priority areas. It also covers chain of command and authorization issues. Finally, it establishes a local water remediation franchise in Key West, FL, as the primary restoration company.

How It Works
An emergency profile gives both the business and the restoration company the information needed to act quickly. Time can be wasted looking for important information and contacting the right managers to give approval to necessary work. The information is contained on an ERP app that can be used on a phone or tablet or computer. A business with multiple facilities can download all the necessary information onto the app and make it available for key personnel. Once the app is downloaded, a company can more easily and quickly navigate critical information to address an emergency.

How to Avoid a Cigarette Fire

12/23/2020 (Permalink)

Man smoking outside a balcony Smoking outside is one of the easier ways to prevent fires from cigarettes

Your lungs are not the only things in danger from cigarettes. Your home is too. There are some very important things you need to know about a cigarette fire.

Why These Fires Are Dangerous

Smoking fires are particularly dangerous because of where and when they occur. Some of these dangerous conditions are:

  • Smoking in bed
  • Falling asleep while smoking
  • Smoking while inebriated
  • Smoking near flammable furniture or substances

These fires occur close to people. When clothing, furniture or bedding catches fire, it releases toxins into the smoke, making it even more harmful. Fortunately, a cigarette fire is preventable.

Smoking Outside
Smoking outside is one of the easier ways to prevent fires from cigarettes, but you do have to be careful about ashtrays. An ashtray fire can start just as quickly and be just as dangerous as fire from a cigarette. If your ashtray is too close to something flammable on or around your home, you might be in danger.

Keep Lighters and Matches Safe
Children are fascinated by fire. One way to avoid a cigarette-related fire is to keep matches and lighters away from children. Talk to your kids about how dangerous fire is and how these implements can start fires. Try to avoid acting like smoking is fun or social in front of them to avoid copying behaviors that might start fires.

Fire Cleanup
If you have had a smoking-related fire, do not enter the house until after a fire cleanup crew has been inside and the damage is assessed. A fire remediation specialist in Brickell, FL, will be able to tell you if you can safely reenter your home. Since smoking fires often involve toxic substances, you will need professional help cleaning and repairing the damage.
A cigarette fire is dangerous and difficult to clean, but they are preventable. All you need to do is be conscious of where you are smoking and what is in the area.

5 Primary Types of Commercial Fire Sprinkler Systems

12/14/2020 (Permalink)

Red coloured deluge sprinkler. Passive fire fighting equipment. Deluge sprinkler

5 Primary Types of Commercial Fire Sprinkler Systems

As a commercial building owner, it's very important that you know how your specific fire sprinkler system works. After all, this information is vital when it comes to saving your building in Design District, FL, as well as its contents and occupants, in the event of a major fire. Read on to learn more about the five primary types of commercial sprinkler systems.

1. Dry Pipe Systems
These types of fire suppression systems are common in colder climates, where it's necessary to have a system that keeps the pipes from freezing over in the winter. These systems are filled with air, as opposed to water, and only activate when the sprinkler head turns on. The response time is a bit longer, due to the fact that the water doesn't actively sit in the pipe.

2. Wet Pipe Systems
Unlike dry pipe systems, wet pipe sprinklers do contain pipes that are filled with water. These systems help reduce fire sprinkler cleanup, since each sprinkler head works independently, and only discharges a spray of water when high enough heat levels are detected.

3. Deluge Systems
These systems are similar to wet pipe sprinklers, except each sprinkler head works in unison; once one sprinkler head is activated, the rest of them are as well. These systems are common in industries that tend to work with flammable liquids or other fire hazards.

4. Foam Systems
Much like the name implies, these systems discharge sprays of water and foam in unison. They are highly effective when it comes to fire suppression, and are often used in spaces that deal with hazardous components, such as aircraft hangars.

5. Pre-Action Systems
This type of fire sprinkler combines the benefits that both wet and dry systems have to offer. These sprinklers are beneficial when used in libraries, data centers, museums and other buildings that contain items that are susceptible to fire and water damage.
Knowing how your specific fire sprinkler system works is only half the battle; you also need to make sure you're having the sprinklers tested and inspected on a regular basis. Contact fire remediation experts for more information.

3 Tips to Minimize Water Loss After Filing a Claim

12/14/2020 (Permalink)

Dehumidifier and air mover drying carpet Water damage restoration services in Marathon, FL

Three Damage Tips To Prevent Secondary Damage

Entering your Marathon, FL, business and finding large amounts of water from a pipe burst is a dire situation. The longer the water sits, the more damage that can happen. After filing a claim and documenting everything, the will likely be a wait time. Although it is best to discuss what can be done with your insurance agent.

1. Call a Professional
Instead of being overwhelmed while researching cleaning tips, focus your search on finding the right water mitigation and restoration professional. A certified company will have the expertise, equipment and advanced techniques to meet industry standards from addressing structural water damage, cleaning belongings and mitigating mold.

2. Extract Standing Water
After making the necessary calls and contacting help that is Faster to Any Size Disaster, No. 1 on the damage tips is removing excess water. Standing water and waterlogged items mean that moisture is wicking up walls and expanding to other areas of the property. Use buckets to bail out water, towels and rags for smaller wet areas, a wet/dry vacuum once water levels are lowered. Ensure that the extracted water is disposed of outdoors.

3. Start the Drying Process
The second most important action to take to minimize the damage is starting the drying process. Even if you don’t have industrial air movers available, any fans that can be used will help increase airflow. Be sure to move fans regularly so that all areas are hit with air. If possible, use a dehumidifier to bring humidity levels down to a lower percentage.
Although dealing with a major water loss is a situation no one wants to find themselves in, fast action makes a speedy recovery more likely. The above damage tips are ways to minimize the damage from spreading and ensure your business is restored to what it was before.

3 Reasons To Skip the Home Mold Testing Kit

11/23/2020 (Permalink)

Mold Armor DIY test kit. For testing mold at home. Skip the home mold testing kit and contact a certified mold removal professional

Why Skip The Mold Testing Kit?

If you’re concerned about the air quality in your home or suspect your house might have a mold problem, the DIY mold testing kits at your local Key Largo, FL, hardware store might seem like a good place to start. However, these kits are limited in scope and are unlikely to supply the answers you need.

1. “Do I Have Mold?” Is a Trick Question
Before calling the professionals, many homeowners buy home mold kits to answer the question, “does my home contain mold?” That’s a bit of a trick question, however, and the answer will always be “yes.” All homes contain mold spores; it’s the reason bread left on the counter will eventually get moldy. DIY mold kits always yield positive results for the presence of mold.

2. Home Kits Leave the Real Questions Unanswered
The real questions you need to ask about a mold problem are things like:

  • Is the mold in my home harmful?
  • What’s causing it?
  • How can I remove it?
  • How can I keep it from coming back?

Unfortunately, mold testing kits can’t answer any of those questions. You’ll need to have a home inspection by a mold remediation specialist.

3. DIY Kits Yield Questionable Results
Your mold kit may include an option to send your results to a lab for further testing (for an additional fee). Unfortunately, the results of this testing are consistently unreliable. Relevant trade industry organizations and the Environmental Protection Agency have issued statements advising against the use of these kits. Consumer Reports has consistently rated them “Not Recommended.” Courts, insurance companies and medical professionals have rejected the results of home kits due to their lack of credibility.
If you’re concerned about mold because you can see mold spots, or smell a musty smell, your home likely has excessive mold growth. Skip the home mold testing kit and contact a certified mold removal professional to eliminate the problem at its source.