Recent Why SERVPRO Posts

Stop Water Damage Early

1/23/2020 (Permalink)

Abandoned building, broken windows, puddles Water damage in Sunland Villages, AZ building

Consider the Following Three Tips

When the water inside a building is allowed to linger, it can have devastating and costly effects. If allowed to puddle, the liquid absorbs into materials such as drywall and flooring, harboring microbes and ruining the facility's structure. Business owners in Sunland Villages, AZ, need to take precautions to avoid severe damage. Consider the following three tips.

1. Be Proactive in Maintenance

Don't wait for problems but stay aware of your building's upkeep. To avoid major issues with a pipe cleanup, you should inspect your plumbing regularly. Have a trusted expert come in once or twice a year to look for any potential leaks or concerns. In addition, the roof should be checked after major storm systems, keeping an eye on shingles that may need replacement.

2. Be Careful With Drains

Proprietors do have some control over keeping drains free and clear. Post a sign for customers and employees, reminding them that anything other than toilet paper could affect the septic system. Therefore, feminine products and anything else should be disposed of in receptacles. If your place has a kitchen, steer clear of pouring rice, noodles, and oils down the system. Grease congeals and blocks it up. The others are absorbent, expanding with water. If a clog continues to grow, it could cause a backflow that brings category 3 water inside.

3. Be Aware of Moisture

When humidity and water linger, they allow for several major complications. Your wood could begin to rot, ceilings could crumble, and mold might grow. Therefore, keep it dry. Run the HVAC system as needed. In rooms that appear humid or musty, place moisture absorbing products. Finally, if a broken pipe or another issue occurs, immediately clean it up and bring in industrial dehumidifiers. Also, contact a water restoration company. The experts have specialized equipment for cleaning and airing out objects.
You don't want water inside your business property. It's not as simple as wiping it up and forgetting about it. Instead, continually check pipes and utilities, avoid tossing inappropriate items down drains, and remain vigilant in reducing humidity and moisture.

5 Tips for Fire Preparation at Your Business

12/26/2019 (Permalink)

People escape to fire exit door An emergency plan for your business should include the location of exits

Five Fire Preventing Tips

When it comes to having a business in Sierra Estate, AZ, fire prevention can be an important part of keeping the staff and property safe. Here are five tips every company should know about for preventing a fire.

1. Avoid Open Flames

One way to avoid a business fire is to not allow open flames on the property. This could include limiting employees from bringing in scented candles or incense, as well as materials used for smoking.

2. Don’t Leave Cooking Appliances Unattended

Many companies have a break room with appliances that allow employees to cook or heat up food. Ensure that everyone knows not to leave these unattended when in use, just in case something should happen.

3. Regularly Maintain Machinery

One step you can take toward fire prevention at your company is to regularly maintain machinery. This will help ensure that everything is running correctly and allow you to repair or replace loose or frayed wires that could lead to a fire.

4. Have an Emergency Plan

It’s highly recommended to have an emergency plan in case your business experiences a fire. This plan should include the location of exits and fire extinguishers, as well as a meet up spot outside of the building in case of an evacuation. You may also want to include the number of a fire damage restoration service in case repairs need to be made after a fire.

5. Share Emergency Information With Personnel

One of the most important things you can do is share your fire plan with the staff. This way everyone knows what to do, and where to meet if the building needs to be evacuated.
When it comes to fire prevention as your business it’s important for keeping the staff and building safe. Avoid open flames and never leave a cooking appliance alone. You will also want to regularly inspect any machinery. It’s also a good idea to make an emergency plan and share it with any personnel.

4 Things You Should Know About Mold

12/3/2019 (Permalink)

Mold growth on wall Mold damage on a kitchen wall in Desert Uplands, AZ

4 Things You Should Know About Mold

Mold is a fungus that can grow in a variety of locations, including your home in Desert Uplands, AZ. If there has been water damage or high levels of humidity in your house, then it is possible you might have some black mold growing. The following is some helpful information about this pesky organism.

1. What Does Mold Look Like?
Mold can come in many colors, from black mold to green, and usually has a fuzzy appearance. Some varieties, however, may look a bit more slimy. Another common fungus you may find in your home is mildew. This is generally much easier to remove and can be distinguished from mold by its powdery appearance.

2. How Do You Know You Have an Infestation?
Sometimes, you can spot a mold growth easily, as it can cause discoloration on the surfaces of walls and other areas. If the fungus is growing in a more hidden location, such as behind walls and beneath flooring, it can be more difficult. In this case, the first sign might be a musty odor. You may need to have a professional inspection done to find it.

3. How Does It Spread?
Black mold travels via spores, which are not visible to the naked eye and can be found in most environments. When air circulates throughout your house, these spores can end up in multiple locations. Luckily, they are usually not a problem, until they have access to moisture.

4. How Can You Keep It From Coming Back?
After mold cleanup has been done, you will need to take some precautions to keep the fungus from returning. Have any water damage repaired as quickly as possible, and keep plumbing and pipes maintained to prevent leaks. A dehumidifier can remove moisture from the air.
If you suspect that there is mold growing in your house, you should have a mold remediation company inspect the building. They can locate any colonies and have the area thoroughly cleaned and sanitized without spreading the fungus further.

Clearing Crawl Spaces of Mold

9/25/2019 (Permalink)

Rain water flowing from a rain spout Reduce mold growth by keeping clean your rain spout

Your home in Adobe Hills, AZ, offers a secure, comfortable place to enjoy time with family, unwind from a long day and much more. The last thing you want is mold damage to invade your space. While most people typically focus on the areas of the home they can see to prevent mold growth, the crawlspace is an important but often overlooked part that is prone to this problem.

Crawl Spaces Are More than Their Name

Homes without a basement or constructed on a slab often have a crawlspace. Though not a living space, its main purpose is to ensure all the areas of the house are well-ventilated, as well as to provide access to vital home systems such as plumbing and electrical. Unfortunately, these spaces can easily become damp and forgotten, especially if there is flooding. The result may mean having to find mold remediation professionals for black mold cleanup.

Prevention Is Key

Instead of having to worry about mold damage and mold cleanup causing additional problems, homeowners can take proactive measures. Some ways to reduce mold growth in crawl spaces include:

  • Ensure there are no cracks in the foundation.
  • Keep gutters and downspouts clean and directed away from the house.
  • Regularly check insulation for signs of sagging or damage.
  • Install plastic sheeting across the crawl space to acts as a vapor barrier.
  • Check ducts and plumbing for leaks.
  • Direct dryer vents outside, not into the crawl space.

Blast the Mold Away

If your crawlspace does develop mold, the mold remediation can be tricky, especially with a well-established growth. A simple scrub down with mold-killing cleaners may not eradicate it. This kind of growth often requires using a surface blaster. Like its name, this process uses high pressure to blast tiny particles to clean the surface. To keep safety a priority, it is best to utilize a professional service for this method.
Although no homeowner wants to deal with mold damage, these common fungi have a way of making your home their own. With a little preventive maintenance and diligence, you can keep it at bay.

4 Common Myths About Commercial Mold

7/29/2019 (Permalink)

man holding a moisture meter testing the moisture in a wall with mold You need to test your mold

Four Common Mold Myths

When it comes to commercial mold growth, it's important to separate fact from fiction. Here are four common mold myths you can erase from your mental inventory right now.

1. You Need To Test Your Mold

Being able to tell your cladosporium sphaerospermum from your ulocladium botrytis is unnecessary. All mold needs to be removed. There's also no such thing as a "safe" level of mold contamination. Having mold tested, therefore, is usually a superfluous — and expensive — process.

To be clear, mold testing and mold inspection aren't the same thing. Inspecting your commercial property regularly, particularly areas with high humidity or that have been subjected to water damage in the past due to flooding or plumbing problems, is a good way to prevent mold.

2. If You Can't Smell Mold, You Don't Have Mold

Mold is generally identified by an earthy, damp, or woodsy smell. Sometimes, however, mold has no detectable odor. Again, regular visual inspection of moisture-heavy areas of your property can help you identify mold growth even if your nose can't.

3. You Should Clean Mold With Bleach

Bleach doesn't kill mold spores. It's also toxic. Instead of dousing a mildewed sink with bleach and filling your break room with noxious fumes, a simple solution of two parts white vinegar to one part distilled water will remove most cases of mildew. For more substantial mold removal, it's usually best to contact a mold remediation company.

4. You Can and Should Remove Mold Yourself

Virtually all instances of mold removal are best handled by professionals, and here's why: You don't want the mold to come back. Mold remediation specialists have the experience and equipment to safely rid your building of mold and guard against future instances.

If you suspect you have mold growth at your Sunland Villages, AZ, property, it's best to keep a calm, level head. It doesn't have to be a catastrophe, especially if you enlist the help of trained professionals who can get your business back to normal ASAP.

3 Important Steps in the Mold Remediation Process

5/30/2019 (Permalink)

room with sheetrock removed exposing the studs and concrete flooring Mold remediation in a Leisure World, AZ home

Three Steps During the Mold Remediation Process

If your home in Leisure World, AZ, has been affected by mold contamination, you may be uncertain what will happen next. During mold remediation, it is likely that the following three steps will occur:

1. Assessment

Mold can have a widespread impact on homes, and an assessment can help to determine the amount of damage that has occurred and can identify what type of mold is present in the home. Different types of mold are often treated differently, which is why an assessment by mold remediation professionals can be useful. Additionally, professionals can search for hidden damage that may be affecting the home. Once all areas that have been affected by mold have been identified and experts know what type of mold is in the home, the next step in the remediation process can begin.

2. Containment

Mitigating the effects of mold damage can help to reduce the cost of the overall remediation process for homeowners. Containing mold is often a crucial step during mold remediation. In order to prevent mold contamination throughout the home, various methods are used to contain the spores. In some circumstances, a physical barrier is put in place to lessen the spread of mold. Airflow is also often reduced in the home by turning off air conditioning and heating systems.

3. Removal and Restoration

Only after the home has been assessed and mold has been contained can the process of mold removal and home restoration begin. There are various methods professionals can use to ensure that mold is removed and does not return. Different types of treatments can remove mold from building materials and personal belongings. In order to remove the majority of mold spores in an area, high-powered air filters can also be useful. Once harmful mold spores have been removed, the home is restored to its original state and professionals will perform structural and cosmetic fixes.

Restoring a home affected by mold contamination can seem overwhelming. However, knowing what mold remediation involves can help you feel less stressed and more confident about the process.

Fire Damage Equals Water and Smoke Damage

4/29/2019 (Permalink)

A damaged home in Mesa, AZ

If you have a fire in your home in Mesa, AZ, the blaze will burn up anything in its path, but after the inferno is put out, there will be more to worry about than just fire damage. Water damage and smoke damage also occur, and their effects can destroy many of your belongings.

Consider the impact of water and smoke damage as you begin plans for your post-fire cleanup.

Water Damage

Firefighters will use multiple gallons of water per minute spraying from a fire hose or multiple hoses to put out the flames. This means your home and its contents in the area of the fire will become waterlogged, just as if your home were flooded. Quickly ridding your home of that standing water will require special equipment, such as sump pumps.

It’s also important to dry out your belongings as soon as possible. There are a few reasons for this, but the long-term concern is preventing mold from growing. However, you also need a dry area to avoid electrical shock hazards. You cannot begin to rebuild until you have all the fire damage cleaned up and dried out.

3 Tips for Preventing Mold

4/25/2019 (Permalink)

Mold growth can occur in 24-48 hours after materials are saturated with water

Three Main Ways to Prevent Fungus

When a leak causes water damage in your commercial building in Adobe Hills, AZ, you have enough to worry about. Don’t add a mold problem to your list of issues to resolve. There are three main ways to prevent fungus growth in your building.

1. Timely Mitigation

A busted pipe is not something you want to ignore. As soon as you know you have damage from excess water or flooding, you need to call your local certified remediation experts to assess the problem and restore your property to its former state. Mold growth can occur in 24-48 hours after materials are saturated with water, so fast mitigation is the key to avoiding secondary damage.

2. Moisture Management

Because mold cannot grow without moisture, keeping a strict management system in place can prevent growth. Have your building inspected to identify areas where water damage is likely and fix the problems that could lead to it. Coordinate with a landscape designer to direct water flow away from your building. Make sure you have a working sump pump in the building’s basement to help with any flooding that may occur. Increase the ventilation and airflow throughout the building to keep everything drier.

3. Resistant Upgrades

If your region tends to be humid, you may want to invest in upgraded materials. Even if the weather is dry, you can use mold-resistant drywall and paint in certain areas of your building such as your restrooms or break rooms that may be more prone to water leaks. Old windows can be replaced to lessen condensation and thus aid in mold prevention.

Fungus thrives in wet environments, so preventing mold can be as easy as denying it sustenance. If you clean up water damage as fast as you can, keep moisture levels low throughout your building and upgrade to mold-resistant materials wherever possible, you may be able to avoid mold altogether.

How the Right Restoration Team Can Help With Your Insurance Issues

3/24/2019 (Permalink)

Contact a team of commercial storm professional to inspect your building

It’s not uncommon for major storms to roll through Leisure World, AZ, and affect people and their places of work. Not only do you have to make sure you and everyone are safe, but you also have a potentially massive storm restoration effort to worry about. This process involves both a cleanup team and your insurance company. Sometimes, one of the parties holds up the other; however, if you get the right response team on the job, your insurance provider should follow suit.

Your Obligations

Of course, you never want to imagine flood damage in your office. Unfortunately, this can be a reality, so it’s essential that you act quickly. Once you detect flooding, you need to do the following:

  • Safely exit your building.
  • Stay away from the water, especially any black water.
  • Contact a team of commercial storm restoration professionals to inspect your building.
  • Contact your insurance provider to report the incident and start the claims process.

What Happens Next?

The storm response team will assess how extensive the damage is in your office. This will help the company come up with an appropriate plan and determine what it can save and what items and portions of the facility it must replace and restore. During the time, the team will take photos of the building and the areas that it must attend to. You should then get a hold of these photos and documentation and provide them to your insurance company.

Potential Hang-Ups

If a restoration company response to your needs slowly, this could hinder the insurance process. Your provider won’t want to commit to covering damages until a cleanup crew begins its assessment.

The Advantages of Working With the Best

A responsive, professional restoration team will help speed up the insurance coverage. The two entities will work together well, thus helping you get the financial peace of mind you need.

There are many reasons to call an experienced, reliable storm restoration company. Get the right team on the case, and you’ll notice that things will go more smoothly with the insurance provider as well.

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.

Is There a Standard for Mold Cleaning?

11/28/2018 (Permalink)

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.

How To Treat Burns

11/20/2018 (Permalink)

Fire damage in Sunland Villages, AZ

When a building burns, fire damage to the structure is only one concern you need to address. The fire safety plan for your commercial building in Sunland Villages, AZ, is likely designed to evacuate occupants before anyone gets hurt. It is possible that someone could sustain a burn, though. Knowing the difference between a major and minor burn, and what to do in each situation, is essential for providing burn first aid.

Minor Burns

A superficial burn doesn't require a trip to the emergency room. There are a few signs to tell if a burn is minor:

  • Similar appearance to sunburn
  • Moderate pain
  • Small or nonexistent blisters
  • Diameter of three inches or less

To take care of a minor burn, you need to cool it off with a cool compress, apply lotion and gently bandage it with sterile gauze. Over-the-counter medication should be sufficient to handle the pain.

Major Burns

Just as you need a professional fire remediation company to take care of fire damage, you need professional medical personnel to handle a major burn. Look for the following symptoms:

  • Deep wound
  • Dry, leathery patches on skin
  • Charred patches showing brown, black or white spots
  • Diameter of more than three inches
  • Location in a sensitive area, such as the face, groin, major joint, feet, hands or buttocks

If you see these symptoms, call 911 immediately. Before emergency help arrives, you can perform basic first aid to keep the victim more comfortable and prevent further injury. Obviously, you need to make sure he or she is moved to a safe place and remove any clothing or accessories that are touching the burned area. Cover and elevate the burn above heart level. Keep a close eye on the person's breathing patterns and make sure he or she stays conscious.

Addressing fire damage to your building should be secondary to the safety of its occupants. If anyone gets burned, knowing some burn first aid can help you ensure that he or she gets the care needed.

3 Things To Avoid After a Flood

11/13/2018 (Permalink)

Flooding clean up in Desert Uplands, AZ

Avoid Doing The Following

When storms send flood water into your Desert Uplands, AZ, home, you don't always know what to do. When is it safe to return to your house? Can you start the cleanup on your own? How you handle a flood will depend on the severity of the damage. It can be helpful to call about storm damage services right after the storm has left your area. You should also try to avoid doing the following:

1. Walking Into Standing Water

Did you know that 6 inches of moving water can cause you to lose your footing? Because even shallow waters can be dangerous, you should avoid walking into any standing water. Your flooded home may be full of stagnant water, but you should still avoid going into it. If the electricity is on, the water could be charged. Storm water could contain dangerous contaminants, too.

2. Waiting To Schedule a Cleanup

Do you want to try to tackle the water damage on your own? Unless you know how to effectively remove flooding and humidity from your house, you should turn to a professional. The sooner you can schedule your cleanup, the better it will be for your home. If you wait too long, you may have increased mold growth in your space.

3. Returning to Your Home Too Soon

While you want your life to return to normal, you need to make sure the flood water is completely gone before you return. Going home too soon can make it harder for the cleanup crew to properly remove excess humidity. The cleanup may require building materials to be replaced, which can leave your home dusty. If you wait until the entire process is finished, you can return to a more normal life right when you move back in.

Storm flood water may cause you to leave your home until the damage can be fixed. Taking the wrong steps after this type of flood can make the restoration process harder than it has to be, so remember what not to do.