Recent Why SERVPRO Posts

Procedures That Save Documents and Cost

1/21/2020 (Permalink)

Documents damaged by water SERVPRO's offices take pride in applying expert knowledge in document restoration

Procedures That Save Documents and Cost

When water and fire rebuilds occur in Washington, MA, the list of damaged assets can accrue quickly, drastically altering the price tag of the remediation process. The loss can be personally devastating to business owners and insurance companies, requiring that not only fixtures get replaced but also much of the signage and paperwork. SERVPRO's experts understand the value of saving property. That's why the company specializes in document restoration, safely and professionally cleaning items. Such tactics not only reduce overall costs but eliminate headaches for all parties.

1. How Can Moisture Damage Be Undone?

Usually, when water hits paintings, papers, and photos, companies may deem them gone. However, document drying technology is available, and SERVPRO's water remediation crew can implement this technique, the same protocol adopted by the Library of Congress. By freezing the objects and then changing the pressure, the fluid evaporates rather than melting, restoring them for future use.

2. How Can These Materials Be Cleaned?

Now dry, specialists work to destroy the lingering microbes. This stage of document restoration often involves gamma irradiation in which an energy source sterilizes paperwork, allowing it to once again be handled.

3. How Can You Avoid This Again?

These tasks allow entrepreneurs to keep what they've created and avoid adding to the property loss form. However, with life's unpredictable status, it's not enough to be content here. Services can be extended with the team digitally saving the sanitized files. Enjoy having all of your important documents in one convenient spot.

4. How Much Training Do Specialists Have?

SERVPRO trains their employees continually, seeking out the best methods to efficiently and wisely work on projects. That means actively seeking out ways to stay on top of securing objects. Owners don't need to toss them. Insurance won't need to replace them.
SERVPRO's offices take pride in applying expert knowledge in document restoration. With customer satisfaction and quality as the priority, the franchises aspire to get the task done right and with ease for customer and insurer.

The Inevitability of Water Damage During a Fire

12/29/2019 (Permalink)

Water leaking from ceiling. Water and debris all over the floor. Inside of a building damaged by fire and water Water and fire damage in an Oaklawn, MA building

The Inevitability of Water Damage During a Fire

Any fire cleanup and restoration company in Oaklawn, MA, will tell you that water cleanup is typically part of the overall process. While this can be surprising and even disheartening for many commercial property owners, it is not that difficult to understand how such property loss is possible in a fire disaster. There are at least three ways that excessive amounts of water can enter a property during a fire and the subsequent rescue effort.

  • Fire suppression systems and hoses
  • Burst pipes and faucets
  • Weather conditions

Fire Suppression Systems and Hoses

Both the fire suppression system in your facility and the hoses used during the rescue effort can produce hundreds of gallons of water. This water does not automatically evaporate due to the excessive heat of the fire. Therefore, much of the water used to fight the blaze will end up sitting on the floors of your facility, which means in addition to the fire and smoke cleanup, you will probably need to pump out excess amounts of water.

Burst Pipes and Faucets

While most of the water cleanup will be a result of rescue efforts, some of it may be due to fire damage to pipes and faucets. The extreme temperatures that occur during a fire within a building can be so hot that the heat causes pipe fittings to melt and break, leading to burst water lines and leaking faucets.

Weather Conditions

Last, the weather may contribute to the water damage inside of your property. Fires often destroy rooflines, break or melt windows and doors, causing a variety of openings and vulnerabilities throughout your property. Also, firefighters may need to vent the roof, further exposing the interior of your facility. If Oaklawn, MA, is experiencing heavy rains, then water will inevitably make its way inside.
While not often thought about, water cleanup is a fundamental part of fire remediation. From the excessive heat to rescue efforts and weather conditions, water can and will find its way into your building during a fire disaster.

Is an Air Purifier Worth the Investment?

11/24/2019 (Permalink)

Air purifier machine in a house Air purifier in a Coventry, MA home

Is an Air Purifier Worth the Investment?

Is your home constantly covered in dust, even when you clean frequently? Do you worry about inhaling pollutants? If so, you may think about investing in an air filtration system. While they cannot pull everything out, they may offer homeowners in Coventry, MA, a better breathing experience. Understand what is on the market, and contemplate what you want from the appliance.

Is One Device Better Than Another?

While each consumer has individual needs, most buyers are looking for a mechanism that pulls irritants from the air. In addition, they also usually desire something reliable and worth the cost. AirPurifierRatings.org has researched numerous machines, seeking feedback on the ease of use, efficiency, and air flow. The following is the website's top five recommendations:

  • Oransi Max
  • BlueAir 450E
  • Ov200 Air Purifier
  • Amway Quixter Atmosphere
  • Austin Air Healthmate

Spend some time looking into each one, considering what would work best for your home. If you think fungus is growing, you may want to have a mold remediation company inspect the premises first, determining if work should be done.

How Should I Choose a Unit?

Air filtration has come a long way, offering apparatuses that focus in specialized areas. Do you need something to remove odor? Are you concerned with allergies? Know how each one functions and how well it cleanses. For example, some can reduce odors, and some cannot. Certain ones may pull mold spores better. If so, this could benefit your home's structure, preventing growths down the road. Finally, read up on whether it performs well in large spaces or smaller rooms. Ultimately, layout your objectives and locate one that meets most of those points.
When you walk into your place, you should feel good about how it looks and how it makes you feel. If you suspect poor air quality, have the rooms evaluated. If mold isn't growing, consider adding an air filtration system to suit your personal requirements.

How to Create a Fire Escape Plan

10/3/2019 (Permalink)

Paper that says escape plan and there is a pencil Protect your family by creating a fire escape plan that helps to ensure safety when necessary.

How to Create a Fire Escape Plan

Is your family prepared in case of an emergency? Fire can break out at any time and is almost always unexpected. Protect your family by creating a fire escape plan that helps to ensure safety when necessary.

Involve the Entire Family

The entire family should be a part of making your household's escape plan. Go through each room together to determine which exits are viable and which need to be unblocked. If you have young children in the home, consider drawing a floor plan. On the plan, mark at least two exits per room. Use a different color to mark where the smoke detectors are. Hang the plan in each child's bedroom.

Account for Small Children and Pets

Remember, not everybody will be able to get out on their own. If you have toddlers, newborns, elderly or furry family members, account for them in your emergency escape plan. Does the dog usually sleep in the living room? Consider moving him closer to the bedrooms in case of fire in the middle of the night. In your plan, you must also decide who will get children or elderly family members during an emergency.

Designate a Meeting Place

Your fire escape plan should end with a designated meeting place. This meeting place makes it easier for you to count heads and determine if everyone made it out safely as you wait for the fire department. If you live in a neighborhood, use a trusted neighbor's house as the meeting place. If your home is rural, choose a tree or another landmark that is far enough away from the house to be safe but close enough that people won’t get lost trying to find it in the dark.

Once you are finished creating your plan, be sure to practice it. Have your family walk through your fire escape plan in Cranston, RI several times and from several different rooms in the home to ensure everyone knows what they should do in case of a real emergency. 

How To Recognize Black Mold

9/19/2019 (Permalink)

The hand of someone with a moist meter on wall, testing for mold Inspectors use mold tests to determine the concentration of spores in a particular area

A musty odor in your home in Oaklawn, MA, is usually a sign that you have a fungus infestation somewhere. In order to handle it properly, you need to know more about it. A professional mold inspection can not only tell you what kind of mold you have but also where the growth is located.

Finding Mold in Visible Places

Inspectors use mold tests to determine the concentration of spores in a particular area. They can also analyze the samples taken to find out the type of mold. You may notice certain things about the growth that lead you to believe it's black mold:

  • Strong odor, similar to that of mildew
  • Black or green patches
  • Slimy texture

If you see mold, you should not wait to find out what kind of mold it is, particularly if the growth is already large. Contact mold remediation specialists to get the mold inspection process started.

Determining Mold Location When You Can't See It

If you smell house mold but you can't see it, there are a number of places where it could be hiding. An odor that intensifies when the air conditioner comes on, for example, is indicative that the problem is in your air ducts. If it is concentrated in one particular room, the growth may be under the carpet or floor tiles. It can also be hidden behind the wall, particularly if you have a leaky pipe inside the wall.

Getting Rid of Mold

The remediation process can get started as soon as inspectors find out where the problem lies. Certified experts know how to treat different mold types and can keep it from spreading to the unaffected areas of your home. Once the mold cleanup process is complete, they can retest to determine whether the problem is resolved.
If you smell a musty odor, you should get your house inspected for mold. A mold inspection can help you find the specific type of mold and the extent of the mold damage in your home.

4 Mold Damage Tips You Need to Clean Up Your Home

7/22/2019 (Permalink)

the bottom of a wall with black growth Check the floor and walls around the mold for areas that have been damaged

If your business has recently been the site of a spill, leak or flood in Comstock Gardens, MA, it’s possible that black mold has developed in the areas affected by the water. Mold loves cool, damp places, and when water gets into places it does not belong, it can serve as a breeding ground for the mold. If you’ve discovered mold in your business, it is important that you do everything you can to treat and remove the mold as quickly as possible to prevent the situation from getting worse.

1. Shut Off the Water

If the mold you discovered is the result of a leaking pipe in your business, it’s important to address the leak first. Shut off the water to the leaking pipe and either drain and repair it yourself or hire a plumber to handle the repair for you. Preventing more water from getting where it doesn’t belong is an essential part of solving your moisture problem.

2. Turn Off the Air System

Although a fan is a useful tool for drying off an area of your home with a moisture problem that can’t be solved with a towel, if black mold has begun to develop, airflow can present a new problem. The spores of mold can be picked up and transmitted on wind currents, so you should shut off your HVAC unit until the mold is addressed to prevent the mold from getting airborne.

3. Check For Additional Damage

If the leak or flood that caused the mold was severe, it is possible that additional damage has occurred. Check the floor, ceiling and walls around the mold for areas that have been damaged. They may need to be replaced to prevent further mold development.

4. Call a Professional

If you’re unsure of how to properly dispose of the black mold, you should speak with a mold cleanup professional about your options. They may be able to offer advice or handle the cleanup themselves if the job is too big for you.

Bread and Mold: An Unavoidable Abomination

5/23/2019 (Permalink)

bread with mold on it Mold growth on bread

Bread and Mold

Everyone has likely been there. You are in the mood for a tasty sandwich, and you go to grab the recently purchased loaf out of the bread drawer, only to find it splotched with green fuzz. Bread mold is a common catastrophe in most homes, and unfortunately, there is little anyone can do about it. True, there are ways to slow the development of mold, like putting it in the fridge, but some of those ways make a loaf go stale faster. The best way to slow the process of mold growth and keep your bread fresh is to pay attention to the environment it is being stored in.

1. Moisture

Moisture contributes to fungus growth, meaning that to slow the process of growth on your bread, you should store it in a dry space. However, bread also contains moisture which means that it will always be a breeding ground for fungus. Mold spores are everywhere, and if your bread is somewhere comfortable for spores to land and feast, then your bread will turn quickly.

2. Storage

The occurrence of bread mold can be slowed by choosing appropriate storage options. A drawer is most likely not the best place for your bread because it is a dark place. Also, if that drawer is near a dishwasher or an oven, then it becomes a warm place as well. Mold thrives in dark, warm areas.

3. Temperature

Also, while there is such a thing as fridge mold, most mold spores do not like the cold and cannot thrive in such an environment. However, your bread will not do well in these conditions either. Bread will go stale faster in the fridge, but depending on how often you consume bread, the benefits may outweigh the cons.

If you consistently experience rapid molding of bread, then you may want to contact a mold remediation specialist in the Meshanticut, MA, area to assess your home. Sometimes a moldy loaf of bread can indicate other problems.

Bread mold is unavoidable. However, focusing on storage conditions may slow the rate of development.

Being Everywhere Has Its Advantages

3/19/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Cranston disaster recovery team, always ready to act

Franchises are Fantastic Business Models

If you want a specific burger from one of the national burger franchises, one is usually nearby. The same applies to doughnuts, flowers, cars and movie theaters. There is also a prominent disaster recovery franchise that:

  • Is faster to any size disaster
  • Provides restoration services for commercial and residential customers
  • Is on the preferred vendor list for many national insurance companies
  • Has over 1,700 local franchises nationwide
  • Offers excellent and affordable franchise opportunities
  • Has distinctive green trucks and other equipment
  • Provides 24-hour emergency services

Faster to Any Size Disaster Is More Than Just Words

Screenwriters are always on the lookout for catchy phrases. They feel that the words make their video productions more authentic. In military pieces, it’s common to hear terms like “boots on the ground” and “eyes on the target.”

With more than 1,700 locations nationwide, that franchise has boots and eyes everywhere. When a local or regional disaster occurs, there is always a franchisee nearby. Someone there can evaluate the situation and report back. Laying the groundwork for the recovery begins immediately. This early response is just as realistic and organized as any military operation.

Disaster Recovery Teams Are Always Ready To Act

Coordinating a regional disaster is beyond the ability of a typical franchisee. Skilled disaster recovery teams fill that role. They activate the mobile command centers and mobilize the heavy and specialized equipment. They coordinate the activities of the redeployed franchisee teams from around the country. They log each insurance claim and assign it to qualified franchisee teams. They track the work, close the claims and keep the insurance companies informed.

The term faster to any size disaster isn’t just about regional disasters. It is also about the fire, water, mold and storm damage to your local business. These local damage restoration specialists with the green trucks are in the Meshanticut, MA, area. They are ready to come to your business and make the damage look “Like it never even happened.”

Key Steps in the Fire Restoration Process

2/18/2019 (Permalink)

Smoke damage in Lippitt, MA

A fire in your home is a scenario you never want to imagine. While there are measures you can take to help prevent this tragedy, disasters can still strike. It’s important to understand the fire restoration process and what you must do following a terrible incident such as this at your Lippitt, MA, house.

The Pros Have a Thorough Process

Fortunately, you can find a highly trained professional company that offers cleanup and rebuilding services. The team will go through the following steps:

  • Inspect the damage
  • Board up and tarp windows, walls, and roof
  • Remove and dry water
  • Remove smoke and soot
  • Clean and sanitize affected area
  • Restore to pre-fire state

Inspection

The first thing the crew will do is inspect and survey the damage the fire left. The team will go from room to room and note all issues—minor, moderate and severe. This will help the company create an effective fire rebuild plan.

Board-up and Tarping

Chances are, the fire will have left some gaping holes in your home, especially at or near windows and the roof. To keep elements and intruders out, and to prevent further damage, the team will board up and tarp these places.

Water Cleanup

Using high-powered equipment, the specialist will suck up any water firefighters left in your home. Then, the team will use dehumidifiers and fans to completely dry the area to discourage mold and mildew growth.

Smoke Removal

Smoke damage can be harmful as well, especially to electronics and furniture. The team will use specialized equipment and techniques to clear your belongings, floors, and walls of smoke and soot.

Clean and Sanitize

In this part of the fire restoration process, a technician will use deodorization methods to get nasty smells out of your home. The team will thoroughly clean every area possible.

Restoration

Lastly, the crews will replace drywall and carpet, if necessary. For every room of your home that needs attention, the team will do its part to make it look as close as possible to its previous condition.

When you have fire restoration needs, call SERVPRO. These professionals have the skills and tools to do the job right.

Do You Know When To Flush Your Home’s Water Heating System?

1/15/2019 (Permalink)

Water heater in a West Warwick, MA home

Like most residents of  West Warwick, MA, you use hot water inside your home every day. After all, not only do you enjoy rinsing off in a soothing shower, but you also must keep dishes, clothing and other items clean. To keep your home’s water heating system in tip-top shape, you must occasionally flush your water heater.

Signs of Wear and Tear

When the water heating system in your home is functioning properly, you probably don’t think much about it. If there is a problem, though, the heater can be impossible to ignore. If you notice any of the following, your unit may need some work:

  • Strange noises
  • Leaks
  • Rust
  • Deposit buildup
  • Failure to heat water

A Timetable for Flushing

To keep your water heating system functioning properly, you must occasionally flush it. While every system is different, you must think about usage to know when a water heater flush is appropriate. Use the following timetable as a general guideline:

  • For households with one or two members, flush the system approximately once per year.
  • For households with three to five members, flush the system approximately every eight months.
  • For households with six or more members, flush the system approximately every six months.

Special Considerations

The above guidelines are effective for most homes in West Warwick, MA. Occasionally, however, certain factors require homeowners to inspect and service water heating systems more frequently. If you use well water or have high levels of sedimentation in your water supply, you probably should inspect your home’s water heating system every two or three months to ensure you do not develop a water leak. If you do, you may need to contract with a reputable water restoration service to mitigate damage to your basement and other areas.

With a bit of work, you can decrease your chances of having a problem with your water heater. With regular inspections and flushing, you ensure your home’s water heating system remains in excellent shape.

Why Smelling Mold but Not Seeing It Is Still Cause for Alarm

11/29/2018 (Permalink)

Moldy wall in Washington,RI

While you might consider yourself to be fairly vigilant when it comes to maintaining your Washington,RI, commercial property, there are certain signals in the building that may prove otherwise. A common indicator is the arrival of a mold smell. Though this is no reason to panic immediately, taking quick action in the following ways is important for clearing the building of any unwanted mold growth that creates the persistent fungus smell.

Follow the Mildew Smell To Its Closest Source

Although the lingering scent of mold can appear almost anywhere, it’s best to try and follow your nose to the nearest possible location of the growth. This can be easier said than done. It’s important to realize that mold creates its odor as it feeds and reproduces over time, creating the chemical reaction that causes the mold smell. Therefore, the worse the smell is in any given location, the closer you presumably are to the original growth source. Common areas of mold growth in commercial buildings are:

  • Rooms with high humidity, such as laundry rooms and kitchens
  • Dark spaces that receive little daylight like cellars, basements or attics
  • Walls, flooring or ceiling spaces affected by water damage
  • Faulty air ducts or HVAC units that emit too much condensation

Searching in these specific areas of your property first is your best bet for locating any troublesome spots.

Once Your Possible Source Is Located, Use a Thermal Camera for Added Efficiency

If you find yourself close to a potential hotspot but you still can’t seem to visibly see any mold growth, it’s time to use a thermal camera. Infrared thermography can be used to create images that display heat radiation in any given space, pinpointing areas of high moisture that might otherwise go undetected by the human eye. Experienced mold remediation technicians are trained to use such equipment and they can help alleviate any mold problems with accuracy and efficiency.

When an unpleasant mold smell emanates in your Washington,RI, commercial property, taking measures like these to eliminate any sources of mold growth is crucial to maintaining the health and cleanliness of the building.


What Are the Flood Cleaning Requirements?

11/15/2018 (Permalink)

Air mover after a flood damage in a Lippitt,RI home

Four Cleaning Requirements

Flood water can be highly contaminated. A thorough flood clean, disinfection, and drying are necessary to restore safe conditions. Find out more about the four general cleaning requirements for dealing with the aftermath of flooding in Lippitt,RI.

1. Eliminating Standing Water

Getting rid of all standing water is the first step toward cleaning up after a flood. The water left behind by flooding is considered black water or Category Three water, as it may contain chemicals, microbes, solid waste. Cleanup professionals often use specialized pumps to extract water and residue in a timely manner to limit damage.

2. Cleaning the Area

Thoroughly cleaning the affected area is the next flood mitigation requirement. In addition to removing all debris and residue, this stage may also involve tearing out porous building materials and contents such as drywall or carpet. Porous materials can absorb contaminated water, and it may be impossible to completely clean these materials in such a way that there is no risk of recontamination or mold growth.

3. Disinfecting the Area

Disinfection is one of the most critical cleaning requirements because flood water may contain infectious microbes or solid waste. A water damage mitigation service may start the treatment by using a specialized pre-treatment during the cleaning process and follow up with a heavy-duty flood disinfectant.

4. Drying the Area

Once the affected area has been cleaned and disinfected, it must be thoroughly dried. Any remaining moisture may increase the risk that mold will develop. An air mover can promote drying and a dehumidifier can lower moisture levels in the air and draw residual moisture out of semi-porous surfaces.

These are the basic cleaning requirements for dealing with Category Three water originating from flooding in Lippitt,RI. Residential storm and water damage professionals can perform a complete flood clean to limit primary damage and the risk of secondary damage.

Flooded Crawl Space: The 4 Most Common Causes

10/4/2018 (Permalink)

Broken water supply line caused water damage to this Cranston,RI home

Several factors can cause a flooded or wet crawl space, and not all the potential issues are expensive to fix. Before going to the expense of calling in specialists, you may want to review the most common causes of crawl space flooding.

1. Incorrect or Inadequate Grading

Incorrect or inadequate grading of landscaping is one of the leading causes of crawlspace floods. If the ground is not appropriately sloped, then groundwater, sinking to the lowest point, may collect under your home. Ideally, you should have a 5 percent grade away from your home.

2. Clogged Downspouts and/or Gutters

Another common cause of a wet crawl space is a clogged downspout or gutter. When either of these items is clogged, they do not adequately direct rainwater away from your home. Instead, the water overflows and runs down walls, collecting in the crawl space. The general rule is that people living near trees should clean their gutters at least five times per year, with the focus on spring, summer and Fall.

3. Overwatered Landscaping

Overwatering your landscaping can be another cause of a crawl space flood, primarily if the lawn is not graded properly. While bushes, shrubs and flowers can be beautiful, they can lead to issues if not properly planted and maintained. Some plants, like certain trees and bushes, can even cause foundational problems, like cracks, which can also lead to the buildup of moisture in the crawlspace.

4. Broken or Leaking Water Lines

Water line damage is not always apparent, especially if there is only a small leak, but one leak can produce thousands of lost gallons in a single year. If you are experiencing persistent flooding in your crawl space, and if grading and routine maintenance are not resolving the issue, then it may be time to call professionals from the Cranston,RI, area.

A wet crawl space can be a frustrating problem, especially if you don’t know the cause. Typically, the cause can trace back to simple issues with grading or gutter maintenance, but if these common causes are not the culprit, seek professional assistance to inspect your water lines.