Recent Posts

SERVPRO: Helping Insurance Agents Through the Claims Process

2/18/2019 (Permalink)

Helping Insurance Agents Through the Claims Process

There is a new way to research an insurance claim, and it is being offered to insurance agents through one of the highest rated disaster restoration firms in the Sierra Estate, AZ, area. SERVPRO has created a claims database to help restructure the approach to claims research. The system helps agents quickly and efficiently appraise claims to help move the approval process along.

1. Claims Information Center

The Claims Information Center or the CIC is a collection of claims information for any insurance agent performing research. Agents can research by the type of claim or the cause of loss and find regional and localized information, helping them better prepare their assessment.

2. Claims Database

The actual database used by the CIC system is ReportER. When an insurance claim or estimate is created, it is uploaded into the system where it can be monitored by the insurer as it progresses from an estimate to a work in progress and finally a completed job. All of this information is accessible through the Managed Dashboard.

3. Management Dashboard

The Managed Dashboard is an agent’s way of keeping tabs on claims and ensuring that progress is being made. The dashboard also acts as the entry point into the CIC system, allowing insurers to research and compare different estimates and outcomes.

The insurance claim process can be complicated for agents. They are having to juggle multiple claims every day and having to research those claims to ensure accuracy. SERVPRO has created the Claims Information Center that utilizes the ReportER database to help agents prepare and rectify claims. While the research alone makes this tool priceless, it is the managed dashboard where agents will find the most use. This dashboard allows them to organize claims by the level of completion and helps them to organize their research. The CIC system truly helps to make a difficult process tolerable.

3 Tips to Prepare for High Winds

2/12/2019 (Permalink)

Storm Damage 3 Tips to Prepare for High Winds Inspect your property for trees that need trimming

Whether from a winter storm or a summer deluge, high winds are one of the most potentially damaging parts of any storm. Able to turn simple waste bins into high-speed missiles, storm winds can be responsible for excessive property damage and even injury. If you’re wondering how to prepare your Adobe Hills, AZ, property for the risks of storm or hurricane damage, read on for tips that can save you money and stress.

Defining High Wind

Determining what constitutes high wind isn’t simple. The National Weather Service has tried to make it easier. Per NWS:

  • Winds 15 to 25 mph are considered “breezy”
  • Winds above 25 mph are considered “windy”

In general, gusts falling into the windy category warrant taking the following steps.

Secure Your Property’s Exterior

Wind can easily pick up loose items outside and launch them into a building or person. Invest in wind shutters or cover windows with plywood in a pinch if gales are anticipated. Secure items like gas tanks and water heaters to prevent them from becoming projectiles.

Secure Your Interior

It’s easy but unwise to forget about the inside of your property when preparing for hurricane damage. Anchor large furniture like bookcases and cabinets that can fall over. Use Velcro or straps to secure computers or other fragile electronics.

Inspect Your Property

One of the best tips is to inspect your property well in advance of storm season, when you have the most time to make changes. Inspect your property for trees that need trimming or removal; trees with loose root systems can easily tip over in strong gusts. Have your roof inspected to ensure there are no loose tiles or shingles that can be dislodged amid winds.

High winds can pose a high risk. Be ready. Use these tips to reduce the risk of storm or hurricane damage and contact a storm cleanup specialist to handle any damage you do incur.

Using an Ozone Machine To Counteract Cigarette Odor

2/5/2019 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Using an Ozone Machine To Counteract Cigarette Odor An ozone generator is used for home deodorization

Using an Ozone Machine To Counteract Cigarette Odor

Smoking cigarettes indoors can cause a lot of problems. Not only can it be a fire hazard, it can also envelop your home in a stale odor that is hard to remedy. Getting rid of the smell is not completely impossible, though. A professional smoke remediation company may use an ozone machine for home deodorization. The molecules attach to smoke particles and neutralize them. Within a few steps, the odor can be gone.

1. Machine Placement

An ozone generator is placed in the area that needs remediation. If the whole house is plagued by the smell, it may be placed in a central location. Because ozone is heavier that regular air, technicians in Desert Uplands, AZ, will likely place the machine on the second story of a two-story home. Once the machine is placed, it can be started.

2. Air Flow Assistance

If only one room needs home deodorization, the room can be sealed so that the ozone stays in the affected area. If the whole house needs treatment, however, air flow must be created so the ozone can infiltrate your entire home. Specialists may use fans, your central air system ducts or a combination of the two to make sure the ozone reaches all the places it needs to reach.

3. Treatment Completion

The treatment for cigarette smoke in your home may take anywhere from a few hours to a few days, depending on the size of the affected space. Once it is complete, the machine is turned off, and the ozone is allowed to dissipate, which can take several hours. Once that happens, you and your family can return to your home.

The process of home deodorization is pretty straightforward but usually requires professional help. Enlisting certified experts to take care of your cigarette odor issues can improve the smell of your home and help everyone who enters breathe cleaner, fresher air.

Quickly Discovering the Cause of a Shower Leak Can Prevent Major Damage

1/18/2019 (Permalink)

Water Damage Quickly Discovering the Cause of a Shower Leak Can Prevent Major Damage Bathtub leaking in a Sunland Villages, AZ home

A leaking shower is more than just a minor annoyance – let go, it can become a structural nightmare. You should always check things out at the first sign of a bathtub leak to avoid a disastrous situation from occurring in your home in Sunland Villages, AZ. A leaking shower could be anything from loose joints in the pipes to a simple shower pan leak and can range from a simple repair to all-out restoration. There are a few things that can be checked to help you ascertain where the leak is coming from and how serious the situation is.

How To Find the Source of a Shower Leak

  • Inspect the plumbing components to see if they are wet or leaking
  • Check the drainpipe and drain fittings to see that it is properly seated and caulked
  • Ensure that any caulking is sound and free of breaks
  • Check doors for gaps in the seal and around hinges to make sure they close tightly
  • Look for any cracks or gaps around the shower pan that may be allowing water to get through

A bathtub leak or shower pan leak can sometimes be found by inspecting the ceiling of the room below the bathroom. Water stains or wood that is dark and wet is a reliable sign that something is heading south, as are bulging ceilings, wet carpet or sheetrock. In a tub, look for a loose seal around the drain fittings. This is the easiest fix and a good place to start. If you are dealing with a shower pan, likewise check the seal around the drain first. Also, inspect for cracks or gaps. In a tiled shower, the problem can be as simple as a loose tile that water is getting underneath or the need to re-caulk between tiles.

If you do find a leak, call on a professional restoration service in Sunland Villages, AZ, to do an assessment and help remediate the situation before it gets worse. They can help protect your home and belongings from water damage. Checking regularly for a bathtub leak and taking proactive steps can give you peace of mind.

DIY Solutions for Removing Shower Mold

1/18/2019 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation DIY Solutions for Removing Shower Mold Clean your shower head using white vinegar

4 Cleaning Ingredients you Can Find In Your Cupboard

Some homes in Leisure World, AZ, have issues with shower mold. Whether it is the high humidity, lack of ventilation, or abundance of spores, bathroom mold can be a constant problem. Many people grab a commercial cleaner to use in the battle against the unsightly fungus, but others prefer the use of more natural cleaning agents. Here are four cleaning ingredients you can find in your cupboard.

1. Borax

Borax is a great cleaner. Dissolve one-fourth cup of the crystals into one quart of water. Spray the solution on the problem area and use a brush to scrub the moldy zone. Rinse the area and repeat the process as needed.

2. Hydrogen Peroxide

For a great cleaning solution, fill a dark spray bottle with hydrogen peroxide and add two tablespoons of vinegar. Spray the cleaner on the shower mold and wait for half an hour. Spray again and wait for an hour. Wipe the area clean and repeat if necessary.

3. Vinegar

One of the best household cleaners, vinegar is known for its acidity and that makes it a natural solution to a black mold problem. Spray a full-strength solution of vinegar on the mold and wait an hour. Repeat as necessary, and then use hot water to rinse the area and dry completely.

4. Bleach and Baking Soda

Using a little hot water, a cup of baking soda, and a few drops of scented oil, form a loose paste. Spread the paste over the area and remove the majority of the mold. Once most of the fungi are gone, spray a solution of two parts water and one-part bleach on the area and allow it to dry. Repeat the spray if necessary, and rinse with water.

Although a mold colony can begin life as a small spot, it can quickly grow into an unsightly area. With these simple DIY household cleaning solutions, you can quickly vanquish that shower mold and return to a clean bathroom. If the mold keeps appearing, consider calling a mold remediation company to find the underlying problem.

Fire Escape in a Commercial Setting

1/12/2019 (Permalink)

Commercial Fire Escape in a Commercial Setting It is important to have an emergency escape plan for your Mesa, AZ business

How to Safely Evacuate your Building

Because the safety of employees should always take top priority, no business owner in Mesa, AZ, should be without a proper fire escape plan. Read on to learn how to implement and share a strategy for safely evacuating your building and minimizing other forms of damage.

1. Exits and Space

The most important preventative measure is compliance with all existing local fire codes. Do not block any exits and have all exterior fire escapes routinely inspected for structural integrity. Leave adequate space near all sides of the building for firefighters and other emergency personnel to park their vehicles. Install and maintain multiple fire alarms and extinguishers per floor. Do not exceed the occupancy limits as outlined in your local codes, as too many people on the premises will strain any emergency escape plan and make injury or property damage more likely.

2. Implementation and Awareness

A fire escape plan is only as good as your ability to communicate it effectively with your employees. Have fire safety videos and related information as part of your routine training process. Explain an orderly evacuation procedure when all employees are present and test it with regular drills. Make sure that escape routes and building plans are labeled clearly and posted on doors and walls as required by applicable fire codes. Congregate outdoors in the vicinity of the first responders, but do not block their access to the building.

3. Emergency Training

If significant smoke is present, evacuation may require crawling along the floor and away from the escaping tendrils, which will rise near the ceiling. It will be extremely beneficial to have some segment of employees educated in first aid in case emergency personnel are delayed. For example, burns may need to be wrapped and cooled to prevent infection.

Since a commercial fire can strike at any moment, don’t wait to devise a specific fire escape plan for your place of business. This should include both a sound evacuation procedure and contact information for fire restoration professionals.

Preventative Measures Against Water Damage

12/26/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Preventative Measures Against Water Damage Water damage in a Mesa, AZ home

Preventative Measures Against Water Damage

When dealing with problematic water in the home, sometimes complacency is the biggest enemy. Many leak or flood scenarios are a result of a process that occurs over a long period of time. Early prevention is key to ensuring that your property in Mesa, AZ, stays dry.

1. Air Systems

Defective HVAC units are one major cause of leaks in the home. A broken pipe leading to or from the unit can cause visible condensation that accumulates and drips into the insulation below. Cold weather or improper operation can also cause the unit to freeze, resulting in periodic thawing that also creates problematic dripping. Overly-humid air can lead to pockets of moisture buildup over time, exacerbating these issues. Regular inspection of heating and air conditioning systems is necessary to prevent retention of water in the home.

2. Appliances and Related Plumbing

Dishwashers, refrigerators and other appliances need maintenance as well. Corrosion or mechanical wear can cause cracks or fit issues on pipes, gaskets and valves that connect your appliances to your home’s plumbing system. An appropriate pipe cleanup procedure involves both replacement of the broken components and a removal of any lingering water or soaked flooring or drywall surrounding the leak.

3. The Bathroom

Given the volume of water that moves through a typical bathroom, it should be no surprise that leakage can ensue there as well. Toilet drains and shower fixtures should also be inspected frequently to determine that water is only moving through the intended drainage channels. Again, persistent condensation, discoloration or oxidized metal surfaces can be indicative of a problem.

In short, drainage and ventilation keep a home dry. A single point of failure in any of these systems can be enough to cause substantial damage given enough time. Remember, if standing water in the home becomes a severe enough problem, it may be necessary to contact a professional cleanup service.

3 Things to Consider When Choosing a Fire Alarm for Your Home

12/26/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage 3 Things to Consider When Choosing a Fire Alarm for Your Home A smoke alarm can be a lifesaving for your home in Sunland Villages, AZ

Factors to Consider When Choosing a Fire Alarm

You want your home in Sunland Villages, AZ to be safe, and a smoke alarm can be lifesaving if a fire occurs. However, there are many different fire alarms available and you may be unsure of what alarm is best for your home. There are several factors to consider when choosing the right detector.

1. Not All Alarms Are the Same

There are often different ways in which alarms detect smoke. If you want an alarm that is sensitive to smoke, an air-sampling smoke detector might be best. Alternatively, photoelectric alarms will detect slow-burning fires, an ionization alarm detects quick-moving fires. Overall, knowing what you want out of your alarm can help you choose the best fit for your home.

2. Alarms Can Have Different Functions

While the primary function of a fire alarm is to alert you and others in the home if there is a fire, some people also expect their fire alarm to alert them of carbon monoxide. Some fire alarms will alert you to the presence of carbon monoxide and smoke, but some alarms are only made to detect and alert you to smoke. If you’re uncertain whether your smoke alarm will alert you to carbon monoxide, examine the alarm and read over the instructional booklet that came with your alarm when it was first purchased.

3. Understand the Noises Your Alarm Makes

Part of fire safety often means knowing how to react to your alarm, and noises from alarms can mean different things. If you have an alarm that detects both carbon monoxide and detects smoke, you can test your alarm to familiarize yourself with the different noises your alarm will make if it detects smoke or carbon monoxide. Additionally, a smoke detector can start chirping if the batteries need to be replaced.

Knowing the differences between the types of alarms can help you determine what type of smoke alarm is best for your home. If your home has already sustained damage from a fire and you want your home restored, it may be helpful to contact fire damage restoration professionals.

The Best Cleaning Methods for Water-Damaged Contents

12/26/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial The Best Cleaning Methods for Water-Damaged Contents Wet carpet due to broken pipe in a Leisure World, AZ commercial building

A variety of restoration methods can be effective for contents with water damage. A mitigation service will recommend the best options for cleaning the contents of a flooded company. Find out more about how experts treat different types of items.

Delicate Contents

Delicate contents may require more or less extensive cleaning depending on the category of water damage. Contents exposed to:

  • Category One clean water should be air dried
  • Category Two gray water should be cleaned, disinfected, and dried
  • Category Three black water should be cleaned, disinfected, and dried

Some delicate materials may not stand up to disinfection and should be disposed of and replaced. Other items may benefit from dry cleaning, foam, immersion, or spraying and wiping.

Stained Contents

Stained contents may require intensive methods. Depending on the durability and porosity of items, treatments may include

  • Foam
  • Immersion
  • Spraying and wiping
  • Ultrasonic waves
  • Wet cleaning

These methods can remove stains from many types of contents in a flooded company. Factor in the materials, category of water damage, and cause of staining when selecting a cleaning method.

Non-Porous Contents

Hard, non-porous contents can be good candidates for several cleaning techniques. Damage cleanup experts may recommend abrasion, immersion, treatment with ultrasonic waves, or wet cleaning. The delicacy of items should be taken into consideration when determining the best cleaning method.

Porous Contents

Allow porous items or materials exposed to clean water from a broken pipe to air dry. It may be possible to speed drying by using air movers, dehumidifiers, or fans. Porous contents exposed to contaminated water may need to be thrown away and replaced. These items can pose a recontamination risk.

The owner of a building or flooded company should inquire about content cleaning methods. Most of these treatments call for specialized training and professional equipment or treatment facilities. Rely on a damage restoration firm located in Leisure World, AZ.

Is There a Standard for Mold Cleaning?

11/28/2018 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO Is There a Standard for Mold Cleaning? Commercial water and mold clean up in Desert Uplands,AZ

How To Start Mold Remediation Process

If your business in Desert Uplands, AZ is affected by mold, you may be unsure how to start the remediation process. There are various mold standards that can help you understand what to look for when it comes to cleaning and removing mold in your business.

1. EPA Standards

The EPA, or the Environmental Protection Agency, is one standard by which mold cleaning is measured. The EPA standards focus on the impact that mold can have on an environment. The EPA offers specific cleaning standards for commercial buildings and provides resources for business owners whose buildings have been affected by mold. This standard can be particularly helpful to people who need an overview of what the mold removal process requires.

2. OSHA Standards

OSHA, or the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, also provides specific mold removal standards for different types of buildings and businesses. OSHA mold standards explain common causes of mold as well as common signs of mold growth. Some states have an OSHA-approved State Plan, which explains detailed workplace health standards in your state. If your state does have a State Plan, this plan can help guide you toward the next steps in mold removal.

3. IICRC Standards

The Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification, or the IICRC, is another important standard for cleaning and removing mold. Unlike the EPA and OSHA standards, the IICRC standards are not specifically focused on commercial buildings, but instead provides a broad spectrum of information that can be applicable to both commercial and residential areas. The IICRC standards also provides mold removal companies and workers with details about how the removal process should work and how to properly clean black mold and other potentially hazardous molds.

Understanding the different types of mold standards can help you know what to look for when hiring a company to assist in mold cleanup and can also provide you with helpful resources. If mold is found in your business, it can be helpful to work with mold remediation experts to restore your business to a safe, clean state.