Archived Blog Posts
How to Make a Successful Water Leak Insurance Claim
If your home in Bonita Springs, FL, experiences a water leak, you can file an insurance claim to cover repairs and replacement costs.
How to Make a Successful Water Leak Insurance Claim
Water damage is one of the most common types of home insurance claims. If your home in Bonita Springs, FL, experiences a water leak, you can file an insurance claim to cover repairs and replacement costs. But even if you're not sure what type of water damage occurred or how it happened, filing a successful claim is possible by following these steps:
Step 1: Stop the Leak
If you have a leak and it's not too major, the first thing you should do is stop the flow of water. You can do this by turning off your main water supply, or by using a bucket or other container to catch it. It's important not to use towels or cloths for this purpose; these materials will only absorb the liquid and allow it to continue flowing into your home as soon as they become saturated. Similarly, don't try using your hands—your skin will likely become irritated and/or cut from being exposed to so much moisture. And finally: don't attempt to plug up leaks with brooms either (and especially not duct tape).
Step 2: Record the Damage
The next step to filing a successful water damage insurance claim is to properly document your losses. You'll need to take pictures and record the details of the damage.
Take photos of all of the following:
- The affected areas, including any damaged floors, walls, or ceilings
- The source of the leak (e.g., a broken pipe)
- The amount of water that has spilled on your property
Step 3: Call Your Insurance Agent
The next step is to call your insurance agent. This is an important step because he or she can help you with the claim process and make sure that your rights are protected. It's also a good idea to do this as soon as possible, even if you're still waiting around for repairs from a water damage company.
Don't wait until you've completed the repairs yourself or replaced damaged items before calling your insurance company or agent. And don't replace any damaged items without consulting your insurer first!
Step 4: Call a Restoration Company
Once you've determined that your home has been damaged, it's time to call a restoration company. Restoration companies help with water damage claims, and they're the best way to get back on track after a leak. The process of filing a claim is complex and can be difficult for homeowners without experience in this area. A good restoration company will take care of all the details for you.
The first step is getting an assessment from a contractor who specializes in fixing water damage problems like yours. They'll do an inspection so they know what needs to be done before writing up an estimate for repairs (which should include labor costs). The contractor will also provide advice on how much time it will take to complete repairs, how long until everything can go back into regular use again, etc.
Step 5: Monitor Progress
When it comes time for the actual repairs on your home or business, make sure that everything is being done in a timely fashion—and professionally. It's easy to get excited about getting your leak repaired as soon as possible; but if something goes wrong with the workmanship during or after repair, then all of those good feelings could disappear in an instant!
It's also important not to rush into accepting estimates from contractors until they have thoroughly checked out all aspects of what actually caused the leak in your property: this includes checking underground pipes and looking at foundations carefully before giving any kind of estimate.
Water leak insurance claims can be challenging, but with the right information and guidance, you can successfully file a claim. The most important thing is to stop the leak and document all damages as soon as possible. If you are able to do this before making any repairs or replacements yourself, then your insurance company will pay for restoration services so that your home is restored to its original condition.
What is the Commercial Fire Cleanup Process?
SERVPRO of Bonita Springs/Estero provides commercial fire clean-up and restoration services, Give us a call.
What is the Commercial Fire Cleanup Process?
Fire damage clean-up and restoration is a process that can take weeks or even months to complete. It is critical to understand how the process works and what steps are involved to ensure that your Bonita Springs, FL home or business is completely restored.
Inspect and assess the damage
The first step in the commercial cleanup process is to inspect and assess the damage, which includes identifying fire and smoke damage.
- Fire damage. When it comes to fire, you’re looking for charring or blackening of surfaces, especially those that are normally concealed. The extent of smoke odor can also be a good indicator of how much heat was applied to an item. Smoke damage can range from very light soot marking on furniture or equipment up through complete charring.
- Water damage from sprinkler systems or excessive water used by firefighters during their operations can cause significant damage if left untreated for an extended period – not only to property but also potentially to building occupants’ health if not addressed quickly enough
Plan and take action
Planning is key to success. The more time you spend planning for a clean-up, the better your results will be.
- What are the goals of your commercial fire cleanup project?
- What materials need to be removed?
- How much time do you have to complete the project?
- How many people will work on this project and what skills do they have?
Pack-out necessary items
Once the inspection of your property is completed, you'll want to pack out any belongings that are damaged or can be damaged by the cleanup process. If you are planning on remodeling the space and not moving back into it immediately, then it is recommended that all personal items should be removed from the property during this time as well.
Immediately after an accident, a building's structural integrity may have been compromised. As such, if there were any areas of the structure that appear unsafe or unstable after a fire, then these areas should be removed and replaced before any additional cleaning can begin!
Structure clean-up is the process of cleaning the structure of a building. Structure clean-up includes walls, ceilings, woodwork, and other types of surfaces that were exposed to smoke during a fire. The goal of structure cleanup is to ensure that any remaining soot or residue from the fire is removed from these surfaces before they are occupied again by people or animals.
As part of your fire restoration process, you will want to have all smoke-damaged items cleaned and dried as soon as possible after your fire damage occurs. This will help prevent further damage or contamination which could greatly increase both time and costs required for the completion of this step in your restoration project
SERVPRO of Bonita Springs/Estero specializes in contents cleaning, which is the restoration of items that have been damaged by fire. This can include clothing, furniture, and personal belongings.
Before cleaning any items or restoring them to their original state, we first perform an assessment of each item’s condition. This helps us determine if it needs to be cleaned or restored and how much work will be necessary on our part to get it back into working order again.
Reinstallation of cleaned/restored items
The restoration process is complete when you're happy with the results. But don't stop there! It's important to make sure that your belongings are properly reinstalled in their original places and settings.
Items that were damaged by soot, smoke, or heat will need to be cleaned again before being replaced. If any items were destroyed, such as carpeting or furniture, replacements must be purchased. And for those items that can't be restored (like a burned-out light bulb), it's time for replacements too!
The same goes for odor elimination—after all this work, it would be terrible to have lingering smells in your home after everything is finished. A thorough cleaning should eliminate any remaining odors from your space so you can enjoy living there once again without worrying about unpleasant smells sneaking up on you out of nowhere! No need to worry though, SERVPRO of Bonita Springs/Estero can take care of it all.
When it comes to commercial fire cleaning services, there are many options available. However, it can be difficult to know which company is right for you and your needs. We hope our guide has helped you understand more about the process and how we can assist you with your next cleanup job!
What To Do If You Do Not Have Flood Insurance
FEMA offers several kinds of grants
Water can quickly enter your Estero, FL, house during a major storm. Even if you do have homeowners' insurance, your policy likely does not include flood coverage. Luckily, those without flood insurance can still apply for a grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
Types of Grants
FEMA offers several kinds of grants. They can assist with:
- Home repairs
- Personal property losses
- Funeral, dental or medical costs
- Vehicle repair or replacement
- Temporary housing
The home repair grant should help you pay for initial emergency restoration services that make your house safe, secure, habitable, and sanitary. However, the government will not cover the costs of returning your home to its pre-flood condition.
You will not have to repay the grant money that you spend. However, you must keep your receipts to prove that the money was used to repair your home. Any money that was not spent was spent on alternative purposes or cannot be documented via receipts will have to be returned to the government.
Anyone who lives in a county that has been designated a disaster area is eligible for a grant. Even if you have flood insurance, you can use the grant for excess expenses that insurance does not cover.
Renters and college students qualify for grants, as well. Applicants do not need to be under a certain income threshold, either. However, you or a member of your household must be a citizen, non-citizen national, or qualified alien.
If you believe you are eligible for a grant, you can apply at www.DisasterAssistance.gov or call 800-462-7585. FEMA will then send a letter notifying you of its decision. Those who were denied eligibility can file an appeal in writing within 60 days of receiving the letter.
Depending on the flood plane of your local stream, even a relatively minor storm can cause large consequences for your property. That is why the government offers assistance to those without flood insurance.
4 Tips for Handling Candles Safely
Candles can be beautiful, but safety should always be considered
Candles provide a calm, soothing ambiance, and many people enjoy them for their warm light and fragrance. While candles can bring joy to you and your family, they can also cause damage to your home if they are not used properly. By practicing proper candle safety, you can prevent a candle fire from wreaking havoc on your home in Bonita Springs, FL.
Here Are Four Tips For Handling Candles Safely
1. Put the Flame Out
Blow out candles whenever you leave the room and before going to bed. A candle has an open flame and can quickly ignite nearby objects if not kept under supervision. Avoid using candles when you are sleepy to avoid dozing off while candles are lit. In addition, blow out candles before they reach the bottom of their containers.
2. Keep a Safe Distance
Candles can set fire to flammable objects, such as paper and cardboard if they are burning too close to them. Place candles at least one foot away from anything that could catch fire and burn.
3. Use a Flat Surface
Burn candles on an even, flat surface. Uneven and wobbly platforms can cause a candle to tip over, increasing your chances of a candle fire.
4. Consider Candle Alternatives
There are many alternatives to candles on the market, such as oil diffusers, room sprays, and flameless candles. Using any of these options will eliminate the risk of fire from an open flame, sparing you the headache of repairs and smoke cleanup if a fire occurs.
In addition to the tips outlined above, it is also important to know what to do if your candle develops into a fire. Keep a fire extinguisher close by to put out small flames and keep the contact information for a professional fire restoration service handy to assist with any fire damage. If there is any chance of danger or emergency, call 911 immediately.
By following the safety tips above, you can significantly reduce your risk of a candle fire. Candles can be beautiful, but safety should always be considered before lighting the wick.
3 Tips for Removing Mold From a Washing Machine
A musty-smelling washing machine is a common household problem.
How To Eliminate Mold From Your Washing Machine
Improperly using a washing machine or failing to clean it can lead to mold problems. If your washer has a mold issue, these three tips can help you eliminate it.
1. Clean the Gasket
If there is a mold smell in your washer, chances are, the gasket is the culprit. Either purchase a commercial mildew cleaner or make your own by mixing two cups of water with a quarter cup of lemon juice and a half cup of distilled white vinegar.
Fill a spray bottle with your cleaner and spray it on the mold on the gasket. Use a clean cloth or towel to wipe the gasket. If it doesn't come completely clean, try leaving the cleaner on for a few minutes and then scrub with an old toothbrush.
2. Purify the Drum and Hose
After cleaning the gasket, move on to the drum and hose. Add your cleaning solution to the washing machine drum and then run a cycle on the hottest setting. This will help rinse away any remaining mold spores and odors. If your machine still has a musty smell after this step, there may be mold behind the washer drum. You will need to contact a repair person in Estero, FL, to fix this problem.
3. Prevent Mold Problems From Spreading
Excess moisture in your home can lead to mold growth. If your washer has a leak, get it repaired. Contact a water remediation company to dry out anything that has become wet. Don't leave wet dirty laundry sitting out for extended periods and move clean laundry from the washer into the dryer as soon as possible. Otherwise, your laundry may develop mold, which can then spread to other areas of your home.
A musty-smelling washing machine is a common household problem. These three tips can help you resolve any existing issues you have and prevent future issues from occurring.
3 Ways To Protect Your Home From a Fire
A home fire can occur quickly, so it's best to be prepared for all situations.
Protect Your Home From A Fire
There are many residential fire causes, such as kitchen mishaps, heating equipment, faulty wiring, and smoking. It's important to recognize possible dangers and take the proper precautions. Here are a few ways you can protect your home from a fire.
1. Cook Responsibly
Whether you're having a neighborhood barbeque in Bonita Springs, FL, or baking a batch of cookies, it's important to always be aware of cooking equipment. A home fire can occur quickly, so it's best to be prepared for all situations. When cooking on a grill, make sure the coals are completely extinguished and the grill itself has cooled down before moving it into a garage or near something flammable. Don't leave food baking unattended for long periods of time and remember to turn off all appliances before going to bed.
2. Be Aware of Possible Combustibles
Your home is full of flammable items, so it's good to take precautions to protect yourself and your family. Never leave your home with a space heater or other heating appliance running. This is considerably dangerous as combustibles like blankets, clothing and furniture can cause a home fire if they are too close to the heater. A fire can start from something as simple as stray ash from a cigarette. If you smoke, it's best to do it outside to reduce the risk of a fire.
3. Prepare for the Unexpected
Practicing fire safety is a great way to protect your family, but you should also be prepared for an emergency. Make sure your family knows what to do in case of a fire, including where to meet once you exit the home. While you may think about reaching for valuables, remember that your safety is of utmost importance. During the fire cleaning and restoration process afterward, trained professionals can preserve family photos and other keepsakes.
Much of the time, a home fire is preventable. Apply fire safety precautions in your home and create a safe environment for you and your family.
Avoiding Water Damages in Bonita Springs
Keep appliance vents clean and clear
Water Damage Prevention in Bonita Springs
It's hard to fully appreciate the impact of the damage caused by water in your Big Hickory Island, FL home until you've actually experienced it. One of the most expensive losses suffered by homeowners happens when they have a broken pipe or other cause of water damage. Fortunately, regular maintenance and annual inspections can go a long way toward preventing those losses. Even without understanding the potential devastation, you can still take steps to prevent damage from happening.
1. Check Out the HVAC System
You may discover drips or leaks if the appliances in your heating, ventilation and air conditioning system aren't functioning properly. You should never see water coming from your indoor units (other than minor "sweat" on the indoor evaporator coil.) If there's ever enough moisture to cause a drip, you may have trouble. You should also be on the lookout for ice build-up on the indoor coil. Regular maintenance is a great way to spot trouble early on, so you can make minor repairs before you have expensive damages on your hands.
2. Inspect Appliance Regularly
Appliances such as dishwashers, clothes washers, dryers, and refrigerators are common causes of leaking water in home. You can avoid a lot of damage by routinely inspecting hoses and connections. Keep appliance vents clean and clear.
Watch out for corrosion and leaks. These quick and easy steps don't take long and are very effective at preventing water damages.
3. Have a relationship With a Plumber
You may not notice a broken pipe until you have significant damage and lots of expenses due to pipe cleanup without regular visits from a plumber. Leaks from the toilet, bathtub, shower, or sink could happen behind the walls or under the floor. As soon as you notice unpleasant or musty smells, condensation on pipes, or puddles of water, contact a plumber. You should also act quickly if you notice an unusual spike in your monthly water bill.
Don't wait until you have to call a restoration specialist to take action. Prevent water damage in homes with consistent maintenance and routine inspections.
Signs of Category 3 Water Damage
If you believe you have black water in your home, trying to remove the water and clean the affected areas yourself is not recommended.
Symptoms Of Water Damage In Category 3
Water damage that occurs in your home in Coconut, FL can take a great amount of time, money, and effort to clean. However, black water damage, also known as category 3 water damage can be difficult and hazardous to clean without the help of professionals. There are several indications of black water damage to keep in mind.
• Discolored Water
The color of the water in your home can help you identify the category of damage. As the name suggests, black water appears dark and murky in color. This discoloration is an indicator that water is unclean and contains potentially hazardous material. In addition to the color of the water, a musty, unpleasant odor can also be a sign of black water.
• Stagnant Water
It is possible for water damage to become worse over time. The longer water sits still, the more damage that can occur to your home and the surrounding environment. If water is not quickly removed, the water has the potential to grow fungi or bacteria, which can cause damage to your home’s structure. As a result, water that was not considered category 3 water damage can change to black water damage.
• Outside Contamination
If there is visible debris in an area that has been damaged by water, then you have reason to suspect black water damage. Water can be contaminated from sewage, rivers, or other sources outside the home. Though it isn’t always possible to immediately identify the source of water damage, visibly contaminated water is an indicator that the water, at least in part, came from outside your home.
If you believe you have black water in your home, trying to remove the water and clean the affected areas yourself is not recommended. In order to appropriately rid your home of black water, rely on a company that has experience in sewage cleanup and water cleanup.
How To Clean Up Sewage Backup in Your Bathtub
If you have sewage in your bathtub call SERVPRO
How to Get Rid of Sewage in Your Bathtub
When you have a sewer backup inside your home, it's crucial to implement cleanup and repair procedures as soon as possible. Not only is sewage in your residence unsightly and unsanitary, but it can also damage your items and render certain household spaces — such as a bathroom or basement — unusable.
A bathtub backup can be particularly daunting to clean up. Here are three steps to cleaning and sanitizing the area in and around your tub.
1. Determine if your home's interior is safe to enter after a sewer backup
If the sewage is affecting electrical wires or otherwise flooding outside your tub or toilet in Estero, FL, you may need to call a professional storm damage cleanup and restoration company for an assessment or inspection right away. If this is the case, the company will do necessary checks and then inform you of next steps.
2. Remove items and waste from your bathtub and other areas
As soon as the cause of the backup is identified and resolved, work to remove sewage. Use a shovel and plastic bags to remove dirt and waste. Dispose of plastic bags right away. If damage is minimal, this is a process you may be able to complete on your own. If there is excess water that doesn't properly drain, a cleanup company may use a pump and wet/dry vacuums to remove moisture.
3. Disinfect affected surfaces and items
After removing sewage and moisture, use soapy, warm water to clean affected areas. Run clothing and other fabric items through the washing machine. Then, use a bleach solution to disinfect. For a small sewer backup, this should be sufficient. If you experience lingering odors or fear you are unable to reach impacted areas under tile or behind vanities, sewage cleanup professionals can help to identify problem spots and restore your home.
Dealing with sewage is never pleasant, but it's important to clean residential areas when backups happen.
4 Reasons To Choose SERVPRO
SERVPRO of Bonita Springs / Estero is Fater to Any Size Disaster.
Why Choose SERVPRO?
When disaster strikes in Estero, FL, it’s vital that the fire, mold, or water damage is taken care of immediately. If it goes unaddressed, it means the spread of secondary damage, added costs, downtime, and much more. Knowing how important mitigation and restorative services are, it’s best to call in the experts that are Faster to Any Size Disaster. Below are four reasons that SERVPRO is worth calling.
1. 24/7 Availability
A fire, bad weather, flooding, a pipe burst and more can never be scheduled. Since an issue may happen anytime, you need the confidence that a professional will heed your call for help 24/7. Having someone always at the ready through its Customer Care Center means a highly needed rapid response.
2. Local Franchises
With more than 1,900 local locations that are backed by a corporate team, you can count on a professional team of technicians to be Faster to Any Size Disaster. The nationwide franchises serve nearly 90% of zip codes in the United States within two hours.
3. IICRC Certified
Damage to your property may have far-reaching consequences if the repairs and restoration steps aren’t done right. As an IICRC-certified company, SERVPRO has met strict industry standards and guidelines and ensures that all technicians are highly trained and continue to receive ongoing training.
4. Insurance Claim Expertise
Thanks to a nationwide network, the claims process is made easier. From electronic filing to up-to-date project process, adjusters and their clients will always be in the know about where the restoration process is at. As a company focused on restoration and not a replacement, it also means keeping everyone on the same page to get the business back on track.
A business owner dealing with property damage needs to act fast. Calling the experts that are Faster to Any Size Disaster provides added peace of mind.
How To Prevent Sewage Backup
Avoid putting grease down the drain
How Can Sewage Back-Up Be Avoided?
A sewer backup can cause damage to your home that requires professional remediation and restoration. If this has happened to you, you may know that it can also cause costly changes to your insurance premiums or coverage. Therefore, it's crucial to find ways to prevent future sewage problems. Fortunately, there are preventative measures you can take to prevent backups.
1. Have a Licensed Plumber Install an Overhead Sewer System
With an overhead sewer system, your basement is protected due to excess water being directed to an area beneath your floor called a sump. A sump pump then moves water to pipes overhead, which drain into your sewer line. In other words, water is directed away from the basement.
2. Get a Backwater Valve
Another option is to have a backwater valve installed. This mechanism prevents water backflow into your basement and must be installed by a licensed plumber, but it can result in less risk of flooding due to backups.
3. Keep Your Sewer System Clean To Prevent Another Backup
It's important to have a sewer cleaning done, especially if your pipes are prone to clogs or if you know of flushed items that could be creating a blockage. Snake your pipes every 18 to 24 months and keep them clear of tree and plant roots.
4. Address Storm Damage Promptly
If your home in Bonita Springs, FL, has recently sustained severe weather damage, you can also have a clean-up and restoration company identify issues within your system. Having any damage remediated and restored helps to ensure proper water flow in the event of another storm affecting your property.
Above all, exercise smart sewer practices to prevent a backup. Avoid putting grease down the drain, flush only toilet paper and human waste, and be sure to plant trees away from your pipes.
4 Ways to Prevent Mold Damage After Flooding
Mold can begin to grow 24 to 48 hours after a flood, so acting quickly is critical.
4 Ways To Avoid Mold Damage After A Flood
When there are storms with heavy rains, or when snow melts after a long winter, flooding can occur. If you experience a flood, it is important to deal with the damage right away to prevent mold growth. Mold can begin to grow within 24 to 48 hours of a flood, so taking quick action is imperative.
1. Ventilate the Area
One of the first things to do is open doors and windows. Mold spores can hang around in the air, so this helps eliminate them.
2. Get Rid of the Standing Water and Dry Out Flooring
Moisture is a breeding ground for mold. If you have water buildup, this can harbor bacteria and other contaminants. Call flood cleanup specialists to pump out the water, dry out the affected items, clean up the mess and restore the damage. You can also put out fans and dehumidifiers to help speed up the drying process.
3. Decide What to Get Rid Of
Although you may be able to salvage some of the items impacted by the flood, you will probably have to throw some stuff away. Upholstered furniture, items made with wood, and anything made with porous material should be thrown if it was submerged under water. Damp rugs and carpets should also be thrown to avoid mold growth. Make sure you wear the proper gear to protect your mouth, eyes, skin and nose.
4. Clean Surfaces
If an item is made out of a non-porous material, such as plastic, metal or glass, you can keep them as long as you clean them. Use a mixture of water and detergent to thoroughly wipe down anything affected by flood waters.
If you have been affected by a flood in Estero, Florida, make sure you clean up the area immediately. Doing so will help prevent mold growth and further damage.
3 Types of Cleanup Required After a Fire
After a fire it may be necessary to clean the smoke and water before the building can be used again, at SERVPRO, we are ready to help you, call us!
After A Fire, There Are Three Types Of Cleanup That Must Be Done.
A fire in your Bonita Springs, Florida, building can be devastating. It can cause extensive damage, making it difficult to get back to work right away. You will probably need to have fire, smoke and water cleanup done before the building can be used again. These are three common ways in which your building is likely to be affected after a fire and each should be taken care of as quickly as possible.
1. Fire Cleanup
When you think of a fire, the first thing that comes to mind is probably how the flames will damage your building. This is often the most obvious type of damage and can affect the building's structure. When cleaning up fire damage, some areas may need to be removed and rebuilt, depending on how severe the damage was.
2. Smoke Cleanup
While it may not seem as troublesome as fire damage, smoke damage can also cause quite a few problems. Smoke can easily travel further than flames, affecting a larger area of your building. Soot can cover walls, floors and equipment and should be removed right away. Acidic particles can erode certain materials and can be especially damaging to electronic equipment such as computers, phones and tablets.
3. Water Cleanup
After a fire, you might also experience a large amount of water damage. If the sprinklers go off or the fire department needs to use a hose to put out the flames, then there could be quite a bit of water in the building afterward. If this is allowed to remain for too long, you could have additional problems such as rotting materials and mold growth. Fortunately, there are emergency restoration services that can take care of damage in the building after a fire.
A fire can be incredibly damaging to your building, but that doesn’t mean that you need to stress too much. Professionals can perform water cleanup as well as other repairs to get your workspace back in good condition.
Microwave Maintenance Tips
Fire damage remediation experts advise that you change this filter every six months.
Maintenance Tips For Microwaves
Microwaves are a staple of convenience in almost every kitchen. In order to avoid a smoke smell in your home in Coconut, FL, when you use your microwave, though, you need to maintain it properly. Here are a few tips to ensure that this appliance lasts a long time and doesn't cause a fire.
Keep It Clean
Any appliance that you use to cook or reheat food is eventually going to get dirty. Ideally, everyone in the family will wipe down the microwave after every use, particularly if there is food splatter left behind. However, that is not likely to happen. Fortunately, cleaning the microwave is a fairly simple process:
- Fill a microwavable bowl with a vinegar and water mixture.
- Microwave on high for two minutes to create steam.
- Remove the bowl and wipe down the inside cavity with a gentle, clean cloth.
Even if you use your appliance multiple times a day, a quick cleaning once a week should be enough to get rid of stuck-on food. If the turntable can be removed, you can even wash it by hand with soapy water before returning it to its rightful place.
Replace Worn-Out Parts
Another reason your microwave may give off a smoke smell is a dirty vent grill filter. Models that are installed over your cooking range likely have a charcoal filter that helps exhaust smoke and fumes from your stovetop. Fire damage remediation experts advise that you change this filter every six months. You also will have to replace the light bulbs over the stovetop as well as the ones inside the microwave itself when they burn out.
The smoke smell from your microwave may not just be burnt popcorn but an indication that you need to clean it. Making these simple maintenance tips a part of your regular home care schedule ensures that this convenient appliance will have a longer life.
4 Benefits of Emergency Board Up Services
If a fire or firefighting efforts cause holes in the roof or walls, those holes can cause additional damage from rain, animals, or trespassing.
4 Advantages Of Emergency Boarding Services
If your home has been damaged by a fire, board up services may be necessary to help protect your property. These are four of the benefits of using these services.
1. Your Insurance May Require It
Most insurance policies require homeowners to mitigate their damages. This means that failing to take steps to prevent additional damage from occurring to the property after fire damage may result in your insurance company refusing to cover those damages. Emergency board up services may be required to prevent some types of additional damage.
2. Reduces Additional Damage
If a fire or efforts to put out a fire result in holes in your roof or walls, those holes can lead to additional damage from wind, rain, animals or break-ins. Board up services can prevent wind and rain from entering your property and make it more difficult for animals and people to gain entry while you are waiting for fire restoration in Estero, FL, to be completed.
3. Helps Prevent Theft and Vandalism
Damaged homes often have electronics, appliances, plumbing and other fixtures that can be attractive to thieves who may target these homes because they know no one is likely to be inside. Holes in roofs or walls can make it easier for vandals or thieves to gain entry to a damaged home. Boarding up these openings helps prevent vandalism and theft.
4. Reduces Liability Risk
Damaged homes can be unsafe for people to enter. Failing to take steps to secure a damaged home may expose the homeowner to liability if someone were to enter the home and become injured. Boarding up openings makes it more difficult for children or trespassers to enter the home.
Using a board up service helps protect your home from additional damage and reduces the chance of unauthorized entry into your home. Talk to your insurance professional if you believe your damaged home could benefit from this service.
The Value of Regular Water Heater Maintenance
If you are not careful and vigilant, your water heater can fail all at once, emptying forty or fifty gallons of water into your home.
The Importance Of Routine Water Heater Maintenance
Nowadays, a modern home is filled with miraculous devices that many people take for granted. At the press of a button, the flick of a switch or the turning of a handle, people have access to running water, controlled cooking flames and light.
The water heater is one such amazing device. It essentially brings hot water to your fingertips whenever you want it. Your unit requires little in the way of maintenance and it will last a good ten years in most cases. With a little maintenance and extra care, though, you might be able to extend the lifespan of your unit and maybe even avoid a damaging water spill.
Indications Your Water Heater Is Misbehaving
As with any other appliance or mechanical device, your hot water tank will show signs of trouble if something is amiss. This often comes in the form of unusual sounds. If you hear any of the following, it could be a good indication your device is in a bit of trouble:
- Cracking, popping and rumbling
- Knocking or hammering
- Screaming and screeching
Upon hearing any of these sounds, it is time to take action. Either call a licensed plumber or attempt to troubleshoot the situation yourself. In many cases, the problem is minor and the adjustment of a valve or the replacement of a piece of hardware is the solution. At times, a water heater flush is needed to remove sediments that have collected on the bottom of the tank.
Implications of Neglect
If you are not careful and vigilant, your water heater can fail all at once, emptying forty or fifty gallons of water into your home in Bonita Springs, FL. This can cause damage to flooring and other elements of the house. To mitigate the situation, the services of a water damage franchise are often needed to clean up the area and minimize damages. Any appliances that use water should be maintained regularly to avoid a water spill in your home.
When Tackling Storm Damage, Restoration Companies Service Insurers Too
This ceiling suffered from a water leak after a storm. Our team responded and began to assess and clean quickly. Call us when you need it!
Restoration Companies Work With Insurers As Well When Dealing With Storm Damage.
During childhood, lightning and thunder could be horrifying, sending kids flying into their parents’ bedroom seeking comfort. As an adult, that same weather doesn’t often instill the same fear. Unless you are commercial owners, that is. Fierce wind and torrential rain wreak havoc on roofs, leading to leaks and unfortunate devastation. When this happens, proprietors in Estero, FL, benefit from working with a storm restoration company. These professionals offer to ease both owners and insurance agencies' work, ensuring that requests are timely and accurate.
1. Immediate Assistance
Swift action assists in minimizing secondary damage. Who can you call in the middle of the night and actually get to come to your place? That is a serious and nervous question. Water restoration, though, demands prompt attention, and places like SERVPRO understand that. Armed with storm response teams who work around the clock, the call center has the ability to send expert care to the site at a moment’s notice.
Furthermore, as a national company, one branch can reach out to another in a flash, accessing additional crew and equipment.
2. Claim Efficiency
Storm restoration can be expedited when claimed are written properly, meeting the policy’s language and the requirements. Restoration agencies specialize in using electronic programs to smooth out the request process and complete it in a precise, acceptable format. Doing so saves insurers and owners time, getting to the projects faster.
3. Skilled and Experienced Teams
A storm restoration specialist understands how to mitigate and treat flood damage. National standards for cleaning lay the foundation of the work. Employees continue to take classes, learning the latest to prevent mold and mildew growth and repair structures correctly and in cost-efficient manners.
Don’t let the gale hinder operations. Locate a storm restoration to assist in your cleanup needs. The professionals understand the demands in front of them and have the resources and knowledge to handle the complex procedures, easing the burden for both insurers and commercial owners.
What Can You Expect With Storm Damage?
If you are having flooding issues and suspect storm or water damage, give SERVPRO a call on our 24-hour service line.
What Should You Expect When It Comes To Storm Damage?
The first time that you return to your Bonita Springs, FL, building after a storm or a flood can be devastating. At first, the destruction may seem impossible to recover, especially with flooding and water damage. The idea of a complete tear out of the building can be daunting. Yet storm restoration is not impossible, and by knowing what to expect, you can create an effective recovery plan.
1. Getting Rid of the Water
The first thing you need to do before anything else is water extraction. This means getting rid of any standing water or water that may have flooded in recessed areas. In some instances, this is just a matter of wiping and mopping up, but in others, you may need to open drainage pathways or even use vacuum suction to remove the majority of flood waters from the premises.
2. Removing Wet Materials
The next step in alleviating storm damage is a complete tear out of wet materials that cannot be adequately dried in place and may even lead to mold and mildew. This includes carpet, wallpaper, and sometimes even floor tile. These materials not only become waterlogged but can also trap water underneath them, making it impossible for the building to completely dry out.
In the instances of extremely bad flooding, you may need to remove waterlogged wood or drywall. Once water has soaked into the building’s structural materials, many times those materials cannot be recovered and must instead be knocked out and replaced.
3. Drying Out the Structure
After you finish your tear out and dispose of waterlogged materials, you need to dry out the building completely. The easy way to do this is to open the windows and wait, but you can also use fans and other devices to hasten the drying process. Any waterlogged areas should get the most attention, and as they dry, they should be tested for structural integrity. It may require professional storm restoration services to ensure the safety of the building.
Getting Ahead of Mold Damage After a Flood
Mold growth and lingering odors are just two of the issues you'll have to deal with after a flood. at SERVPRO, we help you solve it.
After A Flood, Preventing Mold Damage
Did you know that within 24 to 48 hours, mold can begin to grow in flood-affected areas? Mold growth happens disastrously quick when there is standing water, and even without mold, you have to worry about the proliferation of bacteria in standing water and gray water. To get ahead of mold damage, you need to have a reactive, responsive plan for restoring your commercial building in Estero, FL.
1. Move Fast
Don’t delay cleaning up after a flood. Particularly, don’t delay cleaning up any water. Mold growth is dependent on water, and without moisture, it will have nothing to feed on. Make water removal your first step in your cleanup plan, and initiate removal as soon as your property is safe to enter.
2. Be Aggressive
You may be tempted to try milder methods, wait, and then try something more aggressive. By that time, mold has already had a chance to set in and will be even harder to get rid of. Use the most effective methods first rather than trying for something softer. As long as you aren’t damaging the interiors of your property, you’re better off going in with stronger cleansers and cleaning equipment.
3. Be Thorough
Don’t leave a single corner untouched. Nooks and crevices are places where mold thrives, and where undetected moisture can make a perfect place for mold to begin growing out of the sunlight. Check every last crack to ensure you aren’t leaving any untouched hidden areas that may lead to problems.
4. Be Safe
No matter how worried you are about mold growth, be safe when handling your flood restoration and cleaning. If you don’t trust yourself to handle the equipment and chemicals needed to appropriately siphon away water and eliminate mold, contact professionals or enlist help from others. Always make sure to work in a well-ventilated place, wear protective gear, and avoid contact with hazardous substances, sharp edges, or exposed electrical wires.
What Storm Services Does SERVPRO Provide?
SERVPRO professionals, certified in damage mitigation and storm restoration are prepared for almost any disaster, Call us!
What Kinds Of Storm Services Does SERVPRO Offer?
A storm can cause a great deal of stress for property owners and insurance adjusters in Coconut, FL. Storm restoration services should provide relief rather than causing more frustration. Rely on a company that offers a wide range of services and responds Faster to Any Size Disaster.
SERVPRO can arrive at a location more quickly than other mitigation companies. The franchise model prioritizes timely storm response and site visits in several ways:
- Local franchises
- National corporate support
- Call response within one hour
- On site within four hours
A local franchise can be on location within a matter of hours. If a severe storm increases the volume of service requests in an area, nearby franchises can help to manage the workload.
Certified damage mitigation and storm restoration professionals are prepared for almost any disaster. The Disaster Recovery Team has the expertise and equipment necessary to handle most incidents:
- Flood damage
- Storm surges
- Winter storms
SERVPRO can mitigate damage from inclement weather or disasters as soon as possible. Whether standing water needs to be pumped out of a structure or a building has suffered severe damage, disaster mitigation and restoration services are available at the same one-stop shop.
After mitigation measures have been taken to limit the damage, restoration is still necessary. A company that provides both mitigation and restoration services can deliver a more complete estimate. This can prevent unexpected costs or delays later on in the process. SERVPRO also uploads information to an electronic Claims Information Center to make processing and settling claims easier for insurance agents and adjusters.
All of these services set SERVPRO apart from other mitigation and restoration companies located in Coconut, FL. Property owners and insurance agents who are in need of storm restoration services should rely on a one-stop shop capable of responding quickly to any incident.
How To File a Water Damage Claim
The first thing you need to do after you encounter a flood on your property is file an insurance claim.
How To Make A Claim For Water Damage
Have you ever experienced a pipe burst in your home in Estero, FL? The first thing you need to do after you encounter a flood on your property is file an insurance claim. In order to file a claim, make sure that you have all the details you need in order to contact your insurance agent.
Follow These 7 Steps
A pipe burst — and the resulting water — can be a costly headache if not addressed promptly and thoroughly. It is important to properly assess the damage and contact your home owner’s insurance in order to proceed with the necessary repairs. When you come home to a flood, take the following steps:
- Begin documenting everything including the source and location of the water flow.
- Take pictures showing the initial damage and flooding.
- Find the source of the water, and shut off your main water valve.
- Review your insurance policy to ensure that the damage is covered.
- Contact your insurance agent regarding the damage.
- Talk to your agent about an approved water remediation company to begin repairs.
- Work closely with your contractors and your insurance agent in order to quickly and fairly resolve the insurance claim.
Keep Your Agent on Speed Dial
It is important to always keep track of everything going on with your claim in order to avoid further damage to your residence. Make sure that you and your agent are communicating regularly in order to equitably resolve the cost of repairs.
A pipe burst can go from a minor hassle to a costly repair job if it is not properly documented. Take the time to know your rights in your policy. Don't feel bad about making an insurance claim or contacting your insurance company; that's why you pay for insurance. Talk to your agent, file a claim, and enlist the help of a professional remediation service to clean up the mess and fix your home.
The Importance of Third Party Certification
Our SERVPRO team is trained in IICRC and in this case, was quick to respond and extract standing water in this property, call us today if you need it!
Third-Party Certification: Its Importance
The Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification sets the standard for the restoration industry. To ensure the highest level of standardization, the IICRC voluntarily partners with the American National Standards Institute.
This results in certifications that can be trusted to verify both extensive knowledge and experience in the mitigation field. Essentially, third party certification sets the standards for standard setters. There are several reasons why this is important.
Rules for Testing
Certification agencies must uphold high standards for evaluating the effectiveness of a training program. Every aspect of testing is under scrutiny, including:
- Test development
- Test administration
- Test evaluation
The strict rules enforced by the overseeing agency ensure that candidates trained in a certification program have met or exceeded these standards.
Responsibility to Consumers
When the IICRC certifies professional mitigation specialists, customers can rest assured that these technicians have undergone the necessary training needed to do the job well. Through third party certification, the institute is held responsible for making certification requirements available to the public. It also can take feedback from consumers on ways to improve these requirements.
Requirements for Certification
Developing appropriate standards testing and making promises to consumers are only as useful as their practical application. Third party certification gives value to the certification itself. The partner agency enforces the eligibility requirements of obtaining a certification. Earning a mitigation certificate means that the candidate has undergone training, passed all subsequent tests and completed the necessary years of experience needed. Certified mitigation experts can be trusted to provide the excellent service they learn through this training and experience.
When you are looking for mitigation specialists in Bonita Springs, FL, look for those who are certified through the IICRC. Not only are these specialists Faster to Any Size Disaster, they also are often preferred by insurance companies because, with the certification, their reputation for quality work precedes them. Third party certification makes sure that the highest standards of service are offered and met.
Nobody Weathers Storms Like Property Managers
Storm preparedness planning is essential for any managed community. A lack of this could be devastating.
Nobody Knows How To Weather A Storm Like A Property Manager.
Property management jobs come with a great deal of responsibility. Nothing happens without their approval. Everything that does happen follows the manager’s plan. One important procedure in any manager’s playbook involves storm preparedness. Storms come in all shapes and sizes:
- Tropical storms
The Emergency Procedures Handbook Is at the Center of the Storm Plan
All property managers should have a storm preparedness plan. Any who don’t should publish one quickly. What should be in this book? Imagine the following situation after the storm:
- There is no office
- There are no files or computers
- There is no phone service
- There is no electricity
The recovery needs to start immediately. The book has all the information required. It has all the contact information. Keep a printed copy in the vehicle along with a satellite phone. Keep another copy in a smartphone. Senior staff members should also have copies. What’s in the book? The following steps will help set it up:
- Write down everything imaginable. Then write down everything else.
- Meet with the staff. The employees will have plenty to add. Perhaps some teams, like maintenance, will their own section in the book.
- Meet with the owners. Address their concerns. Also, make sure the owners get the complete picture in writing. Don’t ever give them the opportunity to say that they didn’t know about something important.
Keep the Handbook Current
Periodically, the manager and senior staff should review and republish the handbook. One good time to do this would be when a slow-moving hurricane threatens the community.
Storm preparedness planning is essential for any managed community. So is storm recovery. Don’t forget an important contact entry in the Emergency Procedures Handbook. Reach out to the storm damage restoration experts who are Faster to Any Size Disaster. They are nearby in the Bonita Springs, FL, area and are only a phone call away.
The Slow Damage of Slow Drains
While it is tempting to do away with a clog via a bottled chemical promising quick results, it’s not always the best plan.
Slow Drains' Long-Term Effects
A clogged drain can really slow life down in Bonita Springs, FL. Drain cleaners often provide quick and inexpensive results that appear to be harmless, but these methods can drain your wallet fast, months or even years after they’ve earned a spot in the cabinet.
In addition to being hazardous to living things, chemical drain cleaners can damage clothing, countertops, and even pipes. The following are some problems that can occur with household pipes after the use of a chemical drain cleaner:
- PVC pipes can soften as a result of heat generated by the chemical reactions that make drain cleaners effective.
- Metal pipes can corrode as a result of chemical exposure. Older pipes that have already been corroded over many years are especially vulnerable.
- When a clogged drain is treated multiple times with chemical cleaners, unwanted chemical reactions that cause further damage can be caused by different types of cleaners mixing together.
- When pipes have a complete blockage, which is often the case in sewage cleaning, the chemical can sit in the same location in the pipe, giving it ample time to eat away at the integrity of the pipe.
- Chemical cleaners can dislodge clogs, just to have them move further down the pipe. In this scenario, the clog will need further treatment. Often, that treatment is more chemicals.
Each of these situations can result in pipe failure and even the need for water damage repair.
There are other options worth exploring. Taking steps to prevent clogs can have a huge impact. Having a plumber remove a clog and following up with consistent drain maintenance in the form of products that can break down soaps and organic materials should prove less expensive than suffering the effects of long-term chemical treatment.
While it is tempting to do away with a clog via a bottled chemical promising quick results, it’s not always the best plan. Older pipes should be treated with extra caution when a slow drain or clogged drain becomes a problem. Coming up with a safer long-term plan is less convenient in the short term but may reduce aggravation and spending over time.
Choosing a Fire Restoration Company Like A Pro
SERVPRO is here to help in your time of need. We are fire damage restoration experts who are available 24 hours a day to respond when you need us.
How To Hire A Professional Fire Restoration Company
A fire can create endless headaches, but those can only worsen if the company you choose to handle your fire damage restoration isn’t on the level. Lack of experience or cutting corners can leave you with subpar repairs. Do you know what to look for? Here are a few tips for choosing the right fire cleanup firm in Bonita Springs, FL.
In the wake of a fire, your property will likely face a myriad of cleanup needs you couldn’t have imagined. Some of the main things you’ll need after a commercial fire include:
- Dry cleaning
- Smoke cleanup
There are many more skills the ideal fire damage restoration firm should have in their pocket, but this is a good place to start. Once you find a company offering those basics, look for the following to make your final choice.
A company can make many promises on its website, but the proof is in the pudding and that means online reviews. Look for companies with a strong mix of good and moderate - all sparkling might not be entirely honest. What’s important is that they’re strongest at the things you need most.
Experience, Experience, Experience
Any handyman can take a stab at after-fire restoration, and lots of cleaning companies are getting into commercial fire damage. How do you know whom to trust? Look for a firm with at least a few years of experience. Now is not the time to take chances on novices who can worsen damages.
Fire damage can leave your commercial property closed for business, costing you profits. Physical damage, meanwhile, exposes your business to the risks of weather and even vandals. Choose a company that can get started on your restoration immediately.
The fire damage restoration company you choose can make a huge difference in your fiscal and even emotional recovery from a commercial fire. Follow these tips to make the best choice.
4 Reasons You Should Avoid Using Drain Cleaners
If you have water damage in your home, call SERVPRO. Our team has the right equipment for the job. Give us a call for your water damage, 24/7.
4 Reasons Why Drain Cleaners Shouldn't Be Used
An obstruction inside your home’s plumbing system can cause slow drains or overflowing toilets that mandate a prompt sewage cleaning. When you need to fix a clogged drain or pipe, you may have a variety of tools at your disposal, including auger snakes, plungers and chemical solutions. While utilizing drain cleaner may seem like the easiest option, it may ultimately be the worst choice. There are four specific reasons why you should consider an alternative clog-clearing strategy.
1. Warped Plastic
Typically, chemical cleansers breakdown obstructions by producing heat. This reaction can warp plastic pipes, increasing the potential for leaks and subsequent water damage.
2. Corroded Metal
Drain cleaners can also wreak havoc on metal plumbing lines. If the pipe is completely blocked, chemicals may have little effect on the clog. As a result, the solution may sit inside the tube for an extended period, potentially resulting in detrimental corrosion.
3. Shifted Obstructions
Residue from fats, oils and grease can buildup over time and contribute to a clogged drain. Addressing this problem with chemicals can create future issues. For example, instead of dissolving the obstruction, the solution may simply shift debris further down the line. This, in turn, can result in a significant blockage that may require professional attention.
4. Toxic Formula
In addition to potentially damaging pipes, drain cleaner can also present hazards to humans and wildlife. You may suffer chemical burns if the cleanser touches your skin. Fumes may also irritate your eyes and throat. The solution’s composition can also poison any animal that ingests it.
Performing a sewage cleaning and addressing a clogged drain can be unpleasant experiences for any homeowner in Estero, FL. Attempting to correct the problem with hazardous chemical solutions can cause additional problems that may eventually destroy components of your home's plumbing system. To help prevent accidental injuries and minimize the risks of leaks and significant water damage, you should employ non-caustic tools to clear obstructions.
3 Places Mold Likes To Hide
SERVPRO has the expertise and trained technicians and equipment to knock out the mold in your home or business. Call us!
Mold Likes To Hide In These 3 Places
Excess water can lead to a mold infestation. Mold growth doesn’t always happen out in the open, though. Many homeowners in Coconut, FL, never know they have a problem until they smell the odor that indicates there is a collection of fungus somewhere in their homes. You are more likely to catch such a problem in its early stages if you know where to look for hidden mold.
1. Under Sinks
The dark cabinet that houses a sink’s pipes and supply lines is a prime location for a sneak patch of fungus to form. If your pipes have a small leak, you may not notice enough of a difference in your water bill to suspect that there’s an issue. The water is also unlikely to flow out of the cabinet unless the pipe breaks. It may be weeks, therefore, before you discover mold on the wood in the cabinet.
2. Beneath Flooring
Spills and floods on laminate flooring may seem like they’re easy to clean up. If moisture from these accidents seeps into cracks between the tiles, however, you may end up with a mold growth problem beneath them. Even if the surface looks fine, water that is trapped below the flooring can feed spores and cause them to multiply.
3. Behind Walls
If you do see mold on a surface, it is not uncommon for it to be behind that surface as well. Your walls are a good example. Walls tend to be constructed of porous material, so once mold sets in, it tends to grow not only across the wall but into it. This is how you end up with moldy drywall that ultimately has to be torn out and replaced by mold remediation specialists.
If you suspect that your home has mold growth, don’t just look on the surfaces. Mold can flourish in any place that is damp, even places well hidden from sight.