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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Archived Blog Posts

Why You May See Mold After Flooding

8/27/2022 (Permalink)

Damage drywall due to mold growth Mold growth after storm damage in Griffin, FL

Mold Growth After Storm Flooding

After a storm leads to flood water in your Griffin, FL, home, there’s a chance you may see mold growth as well. There are a few reasons for this. Here’s what you may want to know.

1. Mold Is a Fungus

One of the first things to understand is that mold is a fungus. This means that it grows by consuming organic material and water and then creating spores. This prime location for this fungi growth is in the area of high moisture and dim light.

2. Flood Water Can Create a Mold Habitat

The availability of standing water after a storm flood has occurred can create a prime habitat for mold growth. This is because flood water can get into small dim areas, such as under the baseboards, where the flood water creates plenty of moisture and the drywall and wood material provide an energy source. Fortunately, a restoration professional should know that such areas are at risk for this problem and include them in their damage assessment.

3. Flooding Can Get into Unseen Areas

It’s important to understand that water can seep into little used spaces of your home as well. This is why it’s a good idea to call a storm damage restoration professional to help any time this type of problem occurs. These professionals can handle water removal as well as any secondary damages that may occur such as mold, or sanitizing to prevent bacteria growth. They will also know what unseen areas in your home should be checked for these damages based on where the flooding occurred. This may include basement or crawlspace areas, under flooring, and between some walls.

Because mold is a fungus there’s a chance you could see mold growth after issues with standing water, like storm flooding, occur. This water can seep into unseen spaces and create a desirable habitat for the spores to grow. Fortunately, a professional can help.

4 Candle Alternatives

8/22/2022 (Permalink)

Reed diffusers Reed diffusers are the best bet

How Candle Alternatives Can Be a Good Option for Your Home

If you have pets or kids, a candle fire can be a scary possibility. Fortunately, there are inexpensive alternatives out there. Read on to learn what candle alternatives can be a good option for your home in Lakeland, FL.

1. Essential Oil Diffuser

If you want something that can do more than one job, this may be a good idea because it both fills your home with your favorite scents and acts as a humidifier. These come in a variety of sizes and colors so you can find one that will fit perfectly in your home. Simply pick one out, fill it with your favorite oil, and enjoy it.

2. Reed Diffuser

This is another option that uses your favorite essential oils. The main reason people like this is because you only have to put the sticks in once every few weeks to get a constant scent in your home. This is the most low-maintenance option with no wax, flames, or plug required. Plus, you can easily cover it if it doesn't match your decor.

3. Incense Sticks

These candle alternatives still let you light something, although this may not be for you if you are sensitive to smell. You may also have to play around with different types before you find one that smells good, isn't overpowering and doesn't make you think of dark churches. This option can be fun because you get to search for the incense holder that goes with your decor.

4. Room Sprays

If you can find one that lasts longer than five minutes, these are great candle alternatives. They are often available in the same scent as your favorite candles and good sprays will last all day without a flame.

Whether you are looking for a flameless alternative or just something new, essential oil diffusers, reed diffusers, incense, and room spray are your best bets. These can help you avoid fires, hiring restoration professionals, and other damage that candles can bring.

How To Use a Home Fire Extinguisher

8/17/2022 (Permalink)

Severe fire in a residential home By learning how to operate a fire extinguisher you can avoid a home fire in your home.

Tips On How To Operate A Fire Extinguisher

Many residents keep a fire extinguisher in their  North Lakeland, FL, homes, but it's essential to know how to use it correctly. You don't want to spend time figuring it out during an emergency. If you're not sure how to operate an extinguisher, here are some tips.

The PASS Method
Using an extinguisher is best explained with the PASS method. PASS is an acronym that stands for:

  • Pull
  • Aim
  • Squeeze
  • Sweep

Pull
In the handle of every extinguisher is a pin that prevents accidental discharge. Pull the ring on the side of the handle until the pin comes out. The extinguisher is now ready for use.

Aim
Point the nozzle, horn or hose away from you and aim it toward the base of the fire. While your first reaction might be to aim the extinguisher at the flames, you will not prevent fire damage because the material will simply go through them. Aim low where the fire gets its fuel.

Squeeze
Squeeze the handle to release the extinguishing material. If you're using a CO2 fire extinguisher, take care to avoid touching the discharge horn as it gets very cold during operation.

Sweep
Using a side-to-side motion at the base of the fire, sweep the extinguisher until the fire appears to be out. Keep an eye on the area for recurring flames. If they start up again, repeat the steps of aiming, squeezing and sweeping. If you have any concerns about your ability to put out the fire, evacuate immediately. After the fire, you can have a fire damage assessment done to see what repairs need to be made.

Extinguishers in Your Home
It's best to have an extinguisher on each floor of your home. The first place to have one is in your kitchen, as a kitchen fire can happen during cooking. The garage is another good location for an extinguisher.

Taking time to learn how to use your fire extinguisher can help you react quickly in the event of an emergency.

What Is the IICRC?

7/26/2022 (Permalink)

SERVPRO technician in front of SERVPRO vehicles We employ IICRC-Certified technicians

Basic Information About This Organization

The Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification serves as the primary certifying organization for this industry. If you are searching for a damage restoration company to do work on your business, ensuring they have a mitigation certificate from this organization guarantees that you will receive high-quality work. Here is some basic information about this organization and the rigorous standards certified firms and technicians must meet.

Stats
There are certified companies in many countries around the world. Here are some basic stats about this organization:

  • Thousands of companies are endorsed
  • Thousands of certified employees are employed in the industry
  • Dozens of training courses are available for firms and technicians
  • These workers and firms must meet over a dozen rigorous requirements outlined in the organization's standards

Standards

The IICRC is the leader in technological advancements in the restoration industry and ensures that its companies follow a certain set of standards to provide high-quality concepts, terminology, and procedures. These standards are based on the most recent scientific developments and are strictly adhered to by companies who wish to maintain their certification.

Certified Firms

There are certified firms all over the world, even in Lakeland, FL. These are easily identified because only IICRC-endorsed companies can access designated marketing material, webinars, and the firm locator on the organization's website. Only companies with a certification from this organization are guaranteed to provide high-quality work.

Certified Technicians

Additionally, the IICRC offers certifications for technicians who are looking to further their careers. Companies that have certified employees are available in many locations and can provide exceptional work on restoration projects.
When you need a company that will provide high-quality restoration work for your business, it is important to look for an endorsement from this organization. This ensures that you are getting trained employees who use the most recent scientific innovations in the industry to provide your business with the highest quality remediation work available.

3 Professional Smoke Removal Methods

7/19/2022 (Permalink)

Thermal Fogger When trying to deodorize the smoke odor in a room, a thermal fogger may be used

Below Are Five Methods Commonly Used

Along with the visible damage a fire may do to your Lakeland, FL business, there is also smoke damage to consider. If the smoke cleaning isn’t done right, it may mean years of a lingering odor. Unfortunately, traditional cleaning methods often aren’t enough to get rid of the smell. When you trust the restoration of your business to a fire damage and mitigation company, you can count on the most innovative equipment to be used.


Air Scrubbers

Designed to remove tiny pollutants from the air, scrubbers have a filtration system that takes in air and passes it through a filter, which is typically a HEPA filter. Once it goes throw, clean air is released back into the environment. As the process continues, the clean hair mingles with the smoky air to make it less dense. The speed that it works depends on the initial density, size of the room and ventilation.


Thermal Foggers

When trying to deodorize the smoke odor in a room, a thermal fogger may be used. During the process, a heated deodorizer is sprayed. Since it comes out in the form of fog, it is able to reach areas that traditional cleaning methods would mix. The cleaning mixture surrounds the smoke particles and absorbs them, making it an ideal neutralizing method. When this technique is used, the business will need to be evacuated.


Ozone

Another piece of smoke cleaning equipment used is an ozone generator. Similar to oxygen except it has three atoms instead of two, this colorless gas oxidizes odors. The ozone’s atoms attach to odor molecules to neutralize them. The machine breaks them down, along with odor-causing bacteria, to eradicate the smell.

After a fire, charred items and layers of soot aren’t the only concern. Smoke cleaning is essential to ensure your business is back to “Like it never even happened.”

Supply Line Maintenance in Your Bathroom

7/11/2022 (Permalink)

Supply line A supply line refers to the pipes that carry water into your home

Bathroom Supply Line Maintenance

A supply line refers to the pipes that carry water into your home. There are main lines that normally measure 3/4 an inch in diameter and go to an appliance such as the water heater, and branch lines that measure 1/2 inch in diameter and go to individual sinks, bathtubs, and fixtures. It is important that the supply lines are in good shape and that they are made of the proper materials such as PVC, copper, stainless steel, or PEX piping. Supply line damage results for many different reasons: pipes are too old, they freeze and burst, they are damaged by an obstruction or they have bad connections.

Simple Maintenance

When a supply line leak happens in your bathroom in Dixieland, FL, you have two main options: fix it yourself or call a licensed plumbing contractor. With a simple bathroom leak, where the problem is accessible, you can fix the problem in an afternoon with the following steps:

  • Locate the problem
  • Shut off the water
  • Remove the piping with a wrench
  • Buy the correct amount of new pipe
  • Connect the new pipe to the fixture and turn the water back on

Supply line damage comes in many forms, though, and not every problem will be simple. Leaks are sometimes located behind walls or in other inaccessible places. Complicated issues should be left to the professionals.

Complex Water Damage
It's possible that you won't immediately discover supply line damage. The leak could be hidden or in an area that you don't frequent every day. A large or longstanding leak will likely require the services of a local water remediation team. Qualified mitigation specialists will assess the situation and take appropriate action. This often involves water removal with the help of wet vacuums and a program of drying and ventilation. Where damage to flooring and drywall has occurred, it may be necessary to restore and replace materials. The job is finished when your home is restored to its original condition.

Classifying Severe Water Damage and How To Treat It

6/26/2022 (Permalink)

Water Category The three types of water damage have varying contamination levels.

Severe Water Damage Classification and Treatment

Water damage can impact any home or business to varying degrees. Water is classified into three categories ranging from contaminant-free to grossly contaminated and unsanitary. Here is what you should know if the most severe type of damage affects your South Lakeland, FL, property.

What Is Black Water?

The three types of water damage have varying contamination levels. The first category is known as clean water and not harmful, while Category 2, or gray water, features some level of contaminants. The most unsanitary category of water damage is also known as black water. This unsafe water features any of the following hazardous properties:

  • Fungi
  • Bacteria
  • Pesticides
  • Chemical toxins

Where Does It Come From?

This harmful water can have a few different sources. Any sort of sewage backup features water that is ridden with bacteria and labeled Category 3 water. Flood water also contains high levels of bacteria and toxins so the collecting of sea, river, or groundwater after any storm will qualify. Additionally, the microorganisms within Category 2 water can evolve into this category if left untreated for too long.

How Do You Treat This Type of Damage?

Any type of water can cause significant damage to a building. Therefore, a trusted water damage mitigation company should be brought in. These experts are equipped to perform floodwater or sewage cleanup and will safely extract all water and dry the area. From there, the entire impacted area needs to be strongly disinfected before any necessary building repairs can begin.

Black water is the most concerning type of water damage given its heavy level of contaminants and toxins. If your property faces this damage from sewage or flood water, immediately bring in experts to properly clean and restore the space.

3 Benefits of SERVPRO Storm Services for Insurance Agents

6/25/2022 (Permalink)

SERVPRO technician with drying equipment in a residential home SERVPRO of Lakeland is here to make things " Like it never even happened"

3 Reasons Why SERVPRO Storm Services Are Beneficial to Insurance Agents

When North Lakeland, FL, is faced with a natural disaster such as flooding, many clients need storm restoration support. As an insurance agent, you have access to a long list of local restoration companies, so how do you choose one for your clients? SERVPRO makes the preferred vendor list for many insurance companies. Here are three benefits of choosing a SERVPRO storm services team for your clients.

1. Dispatch Preferred Vendors for Storm Restoration
SERVPRO has a reputation for trustworthy service all over the country. Each franchise owner can participate in a corporate program that certifies them as a preferred vendor with an insurance company. This process involves meeting many strict quality standards, including regular audits. When your clients are faced with a disaster, you want to confidently dispatch a commercial restoration company that you trust to support your client from the first moment on scene until the claims process is finalized.

2. Rely on Corporate Resources for Efficient Service
Rapid storm response is necessary to get businesses back on their feet when a natural disaster strikes. Each SERVPRO franchise is locally owned and operated, so your clients will work with someone who understands their role in the community. The franchise owner also has the benefit of corporate support, which means resourcing for cleanup and repair can happen quickly since there is a large team of experts working together to help your clients.

3. Work with Trained Professionals to Support Clients
It's essential to have a professional assess flood damage in your client's space. There's a short window in which certain materials can be rescued and restored; otherwise, secondary damages can occur, which can cause more problems. SERVPRO trains its teams in the latest cleaning and restoration practices. They provide continuing education so that they are always ready to use the latest strategies to make it look "Like it never even happened.”

You can rely on a corporate-backed storm restoration company to support your clients after a disaster.

The 7 Steps of Building Restoration After a Fire

6/20/2022 (Permalink)

Smoke with Large fonts saying SERVPRO Experts are equipped with the proper supplies and techniques to effectively remove all traces of smoke from surfaces.

The 7 Steps to Restoring a Building After a Fire

Repairing a business or commercial space after a fire can seem like a daunting process, but there are seven critical steps that typically unfold. Here is what a fire rebuild consists of in the event your Lakeland, FL, business is impacted by flames.

1. Contact Fire Restoration Experts
If a fire has burned through your property, your first step should be to call a fire damage restoration company. These professionals can mitigate the damage and set a roadmap for repairs.

2. Evaluation of Property
An early step in the process is an inspection of the damage. This will dictate how much structural or smoke damage is present and how much repair is needed.

3. Board the Building
Rebuilding services will then board up the property's walls and windows and place a tarp on the roof to ensure safety, as fire damage can leave these structures compromised.

4. Address Any Water Damage
If there is excess water present after being used to put out the fire, it's critical to extract it and thoroughly dry the space.

5. Remove Smoke From Surfaces
The fire restoration process involves cleaning all smoke and soot that has affected the property. Experts are equipped with the proper supplies and techniques to effectively remove all traces of smoke from surfaces.

6. Deep Cleaning
After smoke removal, the rest of the space undergoes deep cleaning and disinfecting. Odor removal may be included in this step depending on the severity of the lingering smoke smell.

7. Restoration Begins
After completing all the previous steps, the building is now ready to be restored to normal. This final step will vary based on the extent of the damage but could include painting, replacing drywall, or even reconstruction of impacted areas.

The fire restoration process involves thoughtful inspection of damage, boarding for safety, removal of water or smoke, and thorough cleaning before any property repairs can take place.

Fire Extinguisher 101

6/1/2022 (Permalink)

Young Man Using Red Fire Extinguisher To Stop Fire Coming From Oven In Kitchen Whether faced with a small kitchen fire, flames in a trash can or other minor incident, a fire extinguisher can be your best friend.

Extinguisher 101

If the smoke alarm in your Grasslands, FL, is triggered, it often feels like a scary and chaotic situation. In the case of a small fire, using a fire extinguisher may solve the problem and help avoid extensive repairs by a fire damage and restoration specialist. Before trying to put it out, it is important to consider the situation and know how to use the device.

When to Use

Your home is filled with memories, so trying to save them often immediately comes to mind. Luckily, fires tend to start small. If caught soon enough, having a fire extinguisher is vital to putting it out. Unfortunately, fire spreads fast. Consider the following when deciding if the flames can be extinguished:

  • Not all extinguishers are the same.
  • Verify that the one in your home is tested and the device is designed for different kinds of fire.
  • Ensure everyone in the home has been notified about the fire and emergency services have been called
  • Verify you have a safe escape route in case the fires spreads too fast.

Since extinguishers come in many sizes, verify that you are physically able to use them the right way. If in doubt, leave the fire to the professionals.

How to Use

While you may feel confident that you can handle the fire, you may not be as comfortable using the device. Most manufacturers use the same method for use, which is as easy as remembering the word “PASS.”

  • Pull the pin
  • Aim low
  • Squeeze the handle
  • Sweep side to side

Ensuring the last step is focused on the base of the fire. Continue doing it until the fire is out. If it happens to start up again, repeat the last three steps.

Whether faced with a small kitchen fire, flames in a trash can or other minor incident, a fire extinguisher can be your best friend. Before using it, the safety of everyone in the home needs to be considered first.

Steps to Take when Making a Flood Damage Claim

5/16/2022 (Permalink)

Flood insurance form on a table with a book. If you have flood insurance, there are steps that you should take as soon as possible to file a flood claim.

Procedures To Follow When Filing A Flood Damage Claim

Dealing with flood damage in Dixieland, FL, is stressful. Whether you had inches or feet of flooding, not only are you dealing with ruined items, but you may also have to find a place to live for a while. If you have flood insurance, there are steps that you should take as soon as possible to file a flood claim.

1. Report the Flooding to Your Insurance Company

The first part of filing an insurance claim is to report the loss to your insurance company in writing, although you should also call them right away to let them know you will be filing. The faster you do this, the quicker you will receive compensation to replace what is lost.

2. Get Ready for the Flood Claim Inspection

Document the damage with as much detail as possible. Take pictures and videos of everything that will need to be fixed or replaced. Some things, like perishable food, you will need to throw away, but make sure you document the damage with pictures first.

3. Discuss Details with the Adjuster

When the adjuster comes by to conduct the inspection, show them the evidence of the damage and losses. More than likely, you will need cleanup help from a professional restoration service. Before signing a contract, consult with the adjuster or insurance company. Give the adjuster your current contact information if you are staying someplace else while work is being done on your home. After inspection of the home, pictures and videos, the adjuster will be able to give you a more accurate estimate of your flood loss.

Experiencing flooding of your residence is never fun, and it can result in major damage, not only to the home's structure, flooring and furnishing, but also to the electrical and HVAC systems. When filing your flood claim, make sure the estimate includes the repair of everything as well as clean up.

3 Ways FEMA Can Help You After a Storm

5/16/2022 (Permalink)

Lightning storm over city in purple light While repairing and rebuilding your home after a storm is your number one priority, you'll find that you need help with other areas, too.

FEMA Can Assist You In 3 Ways After A Storm

Dealing with the aftermath of a devastating storm can be overwhelming. The wind likely broke your windows, and the flooding destroyed your home and belongings, and you might be unsure how to proceed. FEMA is a government-funded organization that helps people in your situation. Here are three ways they can help you after a storm.

1. Help Pay Repair Costs Not Covered by Flood Insurance

Experts advise that the first thing you do after your home in South Lakeland, FL, floods, is to file an insurance claim and then file for emergency assistance. Depending on your insurance policy, you might find that all of your storm damage restoration costs aren't covered, and the emergency agency helps cover your additional costs. The FEMA representative handling your case will need to see the declaration page from your insurance and proof of your claim, so you'll want to have those items ready when you contact them.

2. Help Pay for Personal Expenses

While repairing and rebuilding your home after a storm is your number one priority, you'll find that you need help with other areas, too. Whether you lost your wheelchair in the storm or need assistance with child care or moving expenses, ask for help paying those expenses when you file your emergency assistance claim. Your representative will go over a checklist of expenses with you to ensure that nothing is missed. The agency will also help you get reimbursed for equipment you purchased to clean up your property after the squall, such as chain saws and generators.

3. Help Pay for Living Expenses

If your house is unlivable after a storm, you'll need somewhere to go. FEMA will work with you to reimburse the costs of staying in a hotel or short-term rental and any associated taxes. Because they don't pay the expenses upfront, you will want to remember to keep track of all receipts and bills that you pay for your living situation.

Even though your life might be temporarily thrown into upheaval after a major storm, relying on government assistance can help you easily sail through the aftermath.

How Fast Mold Can Grow After a Leak or Flood

5/1/2022 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation Specialists Often mold problems occur when moisture accumulates from very high indoor air humidity. Call SERVPRO when you need it.

How Quickly Mold Can Grow Following A Leak Or Flood

Mold spores are microscopic organisms in the air. They can be found almost anywhere. Mold growth is very common after water damage as it is difficult to clean and dry things fast enough. Mold can occur in as little as 24 to 48 hours when mold spores find the right environment. If you suspect your building in Griffin, FL, has become infected with mold, you should conduct a mold inspection.

Where Mold Can Grow

All mold needs to thrive is warm, moist air and some sort of organic material for the spores to digest. Mold can grow on almost any damp porous or pulpy surface:

  • Carpet
  • Drywall
  • Wood
  • Ceiling tiles
  • Insulation
  • Plants
  • Cardboard
  • Furniture
  • Paper
  • Books

Mold is often discovered after leaks and floods. It is left behind by water damage that is not cleaned quickly and efficiently enough.

What You Can Do

Addressing any leaks and floods as soon as possible can help mitigate the damage from mold. Invest in a good filtration system to lessen the amount of mold spores in the air. A quality ventilation system could help to expel excess moisture. You could also take proactive steps in mold prevention by using mold-resistant building products. Both mold-resistant drywall and moisture-resistant drywall are excellent options to consider for areas that will frequently be exposed to high humidity such as bathrooms and laundry rooms.

There are different types of paints that contain mold inhibitors.

Either during initial construction or during any process of rebuilding, look into what building products currently exist on the market to help in the prevention of mold. After a water loss like a leak or flood, the focus is often on cleaning and drying what you can immediately see.

Water damage often leads to mold just below the surface of many organic materials. If you suspect mold growth but have not been able to locate it through a self-inspection, consider consulting mold remediation specialists who can use professional equipment to conduct a more intensive search.

What To Know About Water Damage and Homeowners' Insurance

4/25/2022 (Permalink)

worker from a restoration company Call SERVPRO, we are located close by and ready to respond to your water damage emergency, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Water Damage and Homeowners' Insurance: What You Should Know

You may expect that your homeowners' insurance will cover any water damage claim you make. However, that is not the case. Insurance does pay for professional restoration services following a sudden emergency such as bursting pipes. However, other types of losses may be excluded from coverage. Before you make a claim with your insurance provider, you should know which emergencies are included in a typical policy.

Gradual Damage

As its name implies, gradual damage occurs over time. Water losses typically fall into these categories. That is because much of your plumbing system is hidden behind walls and floors. It could take weeks or months for the problem to become visible. Some examples of gradual damage include:

  • Rot and corrosion
  • Consistently leaking pipes or faucets
  • Foundation cracks that allow water to enter your home

Homeowners' insurance usually excludes losses that result from gradual damage. However, you should check your policy or talk to your adjuster to find out the specifics of your coverage.

There are some exceptions to the gradual damage exclusion, as well. Insurance does not pay for the cost to fix broken pipe. Yet the coverage should include any harm caused by bursting pipes. This is called resulting damage. The same is true for malfunctioning washing machines or water heaters.

Sudden Damage

Sudden damage, meanwhile, occurs when there is an unexpected discharge of water into your Polk County, FL, home. This could result from cracks in your hot water heater or excessive snow and sleet crushing your roof. If this accident was not caused by your negligence, it should be covered under your insurance policy.

Insurance usually does not pay for costs related to gradual damage. It thus will not help you replace broken pipes that have been leaking for a long time. Your policy may cover the harm caused by bursting pipes, however. Any sudden and accidental discharges of water should also be included.

How To Keep Your Gas Grill Clean

4/13/2022 (Permalink)

Cleaning a grill at a summer barbecue party. A grill cleaning also reduces the chance that you will start a fire at your home.

How To Maintain The Cleanliness Of Your Gas Grill

Keeping your gas grill clean will extend its life and keep it working well. A grill cleaning also reduces the chance that you will start a fire at your home in North Lakeland, FL. Call a fire restoration service if you need help with repairs after a fire.

Steps To Keep Your Grill Clean After Each Use

There are a few steps you should follow every time you use your grill.

Burn the food off by keeping the grill on high for 15 minutes after you have cooked your food. This turns any food residue into ash, which is easier to clean. Turn off the grill and allow it to cool until it is moderately warm.

While still warm, scrub the grates with a steel brush. If you have difficulty removing the ash particles, remove the grates and soak them in warm, sudsy water for a few minutes. Make sure to rinse and dry them thoroughly before putting them back in place.

Lightly spray the grates with vegetable oil to prevent them from rusting.

Maintenance Procedures To Perform Periodically

Set up a grill maintenance schedule for a few additional steps. This grill cleaning frequency depends on how often you use your grill.
The burner protectors keep grease and dirt away from the burners. To avoid a grease fire, the protectors should be cleaned every few times you use the grill. Remove them and soak in warm, soapy water. Rinse and dry before putting them back in place.

The burners are located under the burner protectors. Take a soapy sponge and clean off the burners. Then rinse them with a wet rag. The plates, located under the burners, can be pulled out between the burners and cleaned with the grill brush. Below the burners and plates is the bottom tray. Clean this with the grill brush every month or so during grilling season.

A grill cleaning will keep your grill working well for many years.

The Secret To Speedy Disaster Response

4/3/2022 (Permalink)

The work team of a restoration company SERVPRO is dedicated to responding quickly to disasters of any size, we have the training, equipment and experience to meet your restoration needs.

The Key To Quick Disaster Response

The disaster response capabilities of a national company with a network of over 1,700 franchises surpass those of any independent restoration company. Independent firms lack the personnel and equipment necessary to respond to large losses in Lakeland, FL. Property owners and insurers can benefit from the resources of a restoration company that is Faster to Any Size Disaster.

Contact Skilled Professionals Located Nearby

It is important to act quickly after a disaster, but hiring the wrong firm can set back restoration efforts from the start. A property owner who plans to make an insurance claim should hire a service that has the following credentials:

  • Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and
  • Restoration Certification
  • Preferred Vendor status
  • Response rates under 24 hours

A restoration company connected to many other franchises across North America offers the best experts and equipment. Insurers are also more likely to cover claims based on estimates from a trusted service.

Depend On Restoration Network Resources

In the event of a large-scale loss that affects many properties, it is imperative to rely on a service that is Faster to Any Size Disaster. Independent companies may not have sufficient trained employees or specialized equipment to deal with time-sensitive damage affecting many locations.

Rely On a Single Service From Start To Finish

Hiring separate independent services to mitigate, clean and restore damage is another mistake some property owners make. These services lack the clear lines of communication that are present in a franchise that provides all of these services and has the ability to rely on other franchises that are located in the same region.

When a property owner realizes all of the advantages a large company offers to a franchise located in Lakeland, FL, it makes sense to rely on a service that is Faster to Any Size Disaster. This corporate structure empowers franchises to provide service that meets industry-leading standards.

What Is Business Interruption Insurance?

3/22/2022 (Permalink)

Financial concept meaning Business Interruption Insurance with sign on the piece of paper. Unlike property insurance, which covers undetermined costs like hiring a storm remediation company, interruption coverage is easier to calculate.

What Exactly Is Business Interruption Coverage?

Running a business is tough when you don't have the right insurance. A coverage option that business owners must have is interruption insurance. This is designed to help cover income loss while you rebuild your livelihood.

What Does It Cover?

Unlike property insurance, this will not cover costs associated with your rebuild in Griffin, FL. Instead, it will cover operating expenses, such as:

  • Revenue
  • Mortgage, rent, or lease payments
  • Loan payments
  • Taxes
  • Payroll
  • Relocation costs
  • Extra expenses
  • Training costs

What Is a Restoration Period?

Your restoration period is the time that you can receive benefits from your interruption policy. Generally, it takes two or three days for your period to start. Typically, it lasts long enough for you to rebuild your business.

How Much Coverage Do You Need?

Every policy has a specified coverage limit. The limit is the maximum amount of money you can receive from filing a claim. Unlike property insurance, which covers undetermined costs like hiring a storm remediation company, interruption coverage is easier to calculate. You can calculate appropriate coverage based on your regular gross earnings. Keep in mind that any costs going over your policy limit will need to be paid for by you, so it is better to estimate growth rather than be left without funds.

What Does It Cost?

Each policy has a unique cost. Typically, it depends on your industry, employee numbers, and the coverage you need.

What Are the Exclusions?

This type of insurance is designed to support the income of a closed business. It does not cover damaged items, flood damage, undocumented income, utilities, and communicable disease-related shutdowns.

If a disaster happens, business interruption insurance can protect you and your company. It is a good way for small businesses to protect themself financially. It does this by offering a source of income when a business is shut down. However, it does not cover any damage directly related to a disaster.

3 Tips for Troubleshooting Your Building's Irrigation System

3/21/2022 (Permalink)

Sprinkler Troubleshooting an irrigation system is simple if you have some knowledge and the assurance that a professional is nearby if any water damage occurs.

3 Troubleshooting Tips For Your Building's Irrigation System

Is your building in Dixieland, FL, having troubles with the irrigation system? Whether it's a leaking sprinkler head or one that won't turn on at all, a sprinkler system is a hassle at times. Luckily, there are a few steps to take to troubleshoot your system.

1. Monitor the Symptoms

The best way to begin to diagnose your issue is to observe what is happening in your system. Determine if only a few sprinkler heads aren't working or if it affects a large number of them. Monitor for low water pressure or sputtering heads. Also, keep an eye out for leaks and figure out if the leaks are close or far from the main valve. Having this information ready for when a technician comes helps to expedite the repair process and therefore save you money.

2. Inspect the Area

Some issues might be obvious enough that it's not worth hiring an irrigation system technician. Take time to inspect the heads of your sprinklers and look for any damages or issues. Often, the plastic on the heads is damaged by lawncare or foot traffic. Keep an eye out for any mud or other debris on the heads, too. Both of these issues cause an uneven flow of water.

3. Call a Professional

While irrigation problems are frustrating, a water leak or flood in your lawn or building is a much bigger issue. If you are experiencing any leaks or possible damages, it's best to call in a water damage cleanup and restoration specialist to assess and take care of any issues. A pro uses specialized equipment to detect any hidden moisture, mold, or other issues.

Most experts also have tools designed to dry your property while minimizing any further damages.Troubleshooting an irrigation system is easy with some knowledge under your belt and the reassurance that a professional is near if any water damages occur.

3 Reasons To Buy Flood Insurance

3/16/2022 (Permalink)

Flood insurance form on a table with a book. Flooding is a common problem that can cause serious damage. Therefore, flood insurance is a good idea for any business owner.

Three Reasons To Purchase Flood Insurance

Even though it is not required, a flood policy is a good idea for business owners in Lakeland, FL. You can get good policies through both the government and private companies. If you're on the fence about this type of coverage, here are some reasons you should purchase it.

1. It Is Affordable

Floods can do serious damage to any business. When you tally up the damage done and the cost of hiring a storm restoration company to fix it, floods are very costly. Unfortunately, this is not covered by standard commercial insurance. Considering the amount you would have to pay to fix flood damage, the cost of having a special policy doesn't seem too expensive. Plus, most businesses can get a policy for less than they expect. This is especially true when you can add flood coverage to your standard property insurance.

2. Every Property Is at Risk

The property maps created by the Federal Emergency Management Agency are an estimate of where flooding will occur based on past conditions. However, even low-risk zones still have a decent chance of flooding. Instead of marking you as safe from a flood, placing your business in a low-risk zone lets you add flood coverage to your commercial insurance for less.

3. Flood Damage Is Catastrophic

Flooding is a common side effect of many natural disasters and storms. In fact, it results in billions of dollars of damage each year. Your business alone could end up with thousands of dollars in repairs that are not covered under a standard commercial insurance policy.

Flooding is a common issue that can do serious damage. The results of this disaster are costly to repair. Even though the FEMA maps mark some areas as low-risk, this does not mean businesses in these regions are clear of flooding. Therefore, flood insurance is a good idea for any business owner.

The 4 Types of Water Damage and Why Pretesting Is Necessary

2/10/2022 (Permalink)

A home flooded Does your home have water damage? This is no problem for our team! Our technicians are well versed in their areas of expertise. Call us!

The 4 Types Of Water Damage And The Importance Of Pre-Testing

Water damage presents an interesting problem because there are different levels of severity not only to the damage inflicted but also the type of water that caused the problem. There are three basic water types and four levels of classifications to those types. The kind of water can drastically reduce or increase the costs of restoration and the claim filed. For that reason, pretesting is essential to the water mitigation process as it provides an appropriate category and classification.

1. Clean

Clean water, or category one, is the least concerning. This water comes from a clean source and poses no real threat to your health. This level of water damage is the least costly type of insurance claim. However, it is important to note that failure to act fast may result in the water becoming contaminated by other sources or items, thereby escalating classification and possibly category.

2. Gray

If pretesting concludes that the water is gray, or category two, that means there is significant contamination. There are elements of both chemical and biological matter found in this category, meaning that the water has the potential to make you ill if touched or consumed.


3. Category three

An insurance agent and company will likely instruct you to hire a disaster restoration specialist in the Lakeland, FL, area to remove and repair category three, water. This water is considered dangerous. 


Water categorization and classification is an interesting and necessary process, especially in regards to insurance claims. Without having an accurate understanding of the level of contamination, it can be challenging to make an appropriate claim.

Pretesting helps identify the category and level of damage to your home. This early identification means that the claim you make to your insurer is accurate, accounting for the level of loss and restoration that is expected.

Floor to Ceiling Water Mitigation

2/2/2022 (Permalink)

Specialist are cleaning water damage in a business Day or Night. Holiday or Business Day. We have your back if catastrophe strikes. Call SERVPRO when you need it!

Water Mitigation From Floor To Ceiling

Business owners or site managers in Polk County, FL who are unfortunate enough to experience a water damage event usually want to get the problem dealt with as quickly and quietly as possible. However, it makes much more sense to do a thorough and methodical cleanup and restore the affected elements of your building.

Secondary issues, such as black mold and pest problems, might arise from even clean water sources. Pipe burst cleanup is important, so check your building from top to bottom, especially if you have:

  • Water pipes
  • Damaged water supply lines
  • Unexplained clean water flooding

Floor Concerns

When a supply line or pipe breaks, it's important to start thinking from the ground up. The first task after stopping the water source is, of course, to remove any standing water. After that, proper removal, cleanup and drying procedures can start.

In the Walls

One of the reasons you should take special care with burst pipes is their location. Many pipes are near to or embedded in walls. It's important to go through a rigorous damage mitigation procedure if one of these breaks, especially if it's in an awkward position. Walls might need to be removed, or sections might need to be replaced. If pipe burst cleanup is done correctly, you might feel like your whole building is being ripped apart. However, you should be able to enjoy normal operations again as soon as everything is dried and refurbished.

Up in the Air

A supply line leaking might cause problems in multi-floor buildings that appear to be coming from the next floor up. In fact, the issue might be between the floors. Water cleanup procedures are relatively similar in these cases, but they take place on the ceiling.

Nobody in Polk County, FL, wants to see their building ripped up, but these pipes burst cleanup steps are often necessary to save you and your stakeholders from further complications down the road. Even if it seems hectic right after the flood event, everything should be back to new relatively quickly with the right cleanup crew.

Flood Insurance May Not Be an Option for Your Business

1/31/2022 (Permalink)

Flood insurance form on a table with a book. If your business is in a flood zone, the government requires you to have flood insurance. It’s the law.

Your Business May Not Be Eligible For Flood Insurance.

You read that correctly. Flood insurance may not be an option. In some situations, it is a requirement. Financial institutions, investors and others expect you to protect their investments and property.

They will not leave the insurance decision in your hands. Sometimes, it’s one of the costs of doing business.

Insurance companies distinguish between water damage and floods. Rising water causes flood damage. Typical examples are:

  • Overflowing rivers and streams
  • Storm surge on large bodies of water
  • Local flooding due to heavy rain or blocked storm drains
  • Runoff from melting ice and snow

Weather, plumbing and fire sprinklers are common sources of water damage. A standard commercial insurance policy covers the cost of these repairs. It offers no coverage for floods. The following are situations that may require a business to have insurance.

1. The Federal Government funded, backed, or insured a business mortgage. If your business is in a flood zone, the government requires you to have flood insurance. It’s the law. If a flood destroys the business, they want to get paid.

2. Other mortgage lenders may require the insurance. Lenders want to protect their investment as well. They may even want the insurance for businesses near flood zones.

3. Investors may demand insurance. If there is a flood, the investor’s investment is at risk. It is reasonable for them to expect the protection of their investment.

4. Certain customers and vendors may require insurance. A distribution business ships inventory belonging to their customer. Other businesses may hold inventory consigned by a vendor. Both parties may want insurance protection for their inventory.

The Flood Happened and the Damage Is Extensive

That flood insurance sure was a great idea. The water is gone. Now, it’s a race against mold. There are flood and water damage remediation specialists in the Lakeland, FL, area. They can get you back on your feet quickly. Give them a call.

3 Tips for Preventing Chimney Fires

1/30/2022 (Permalink)

Fragment of the interior of a country house. The iron furnace is heated. There is wood near the stove. It's dark outside . If you already have damage due to fire or smoke in your home, call SERVPRO, we are ready to help you.

3 Chimney Fire Prevention Tips

Your furnace has gotten you through some pretty tough winters in Lakeland, FL, and continues to help make your home a comfortable, great place to live for you and your family. Unfortunately, no furnace is a self-sustaining system, and you’ll need to maintain yours to avoid a number of serious issues, such as:

  • Smoke damage to your home and belongings
  • Blockage of the vent, which can lead to a buildup of unsafe air in your home
  • House fires

Luckily, maintaining your furnace correctly is a fairly simple task when approached properly, and costs much less in the long run than paying for professional fire cleaning or smoke cleaning services when things go wrong.

Filtration

The easiest thing you can do to prevent the need for fire cleaning in your home is inspect and change your furnace filter regularly. Your filter prevents dirt and debris from entering the furnace. An extreme buildup on these filters can lead to furnace malfunction, which may, in turn, lead to a house fire.

Clean Your Vents

If your exit vents become clogged with dirt and dust, the hot air your furnace creates will have nowhere to go. The buildup of heat in your ducts can not only damage the furnace and its channels, but can very well lead to more serious issues down the road. Cleaning your vents is a quick, easy way to reduce strain on your furnace.

Inspect the Fan

Your furnace fan is, of course, the component that gets warm air moving throughout the vents to warm your home. If the fan is malfunctioning, hot air will simply stay in place and may cause overheating of various furnace components. Having a professional check out your fan or ensuring it’s working correctly yourself is always advisable when maintaining your furnace.

Following these steps helps to reduce the likelihood of furnace-related fire and smoke damages occurring. At the end of the day, spending a little more time on maintenance is much better than spending your hard-earned cash on fire cleaning services.

The Emergency Action Plan: Understanding the Basic Principles

1/12/2022 (Permalink)

Contingency Plan A proper contingency plan in the event of a fire can be the difference between life and death.

Understanding The Fundamentals Of An Emergency Action Plan (EAP)

Every business should have a contingency plan, but that doesn’t only refer to whether or not a company succeeds or fails. Emergency planning is also a part of any good contingency. You need to know that your employees are safe and accounted for in the event of a disaster. Therefore, you should understand the basics of an emergency action plan.

1. Make a List of Contacts

Every well-crafted evacuation plan requires a list of contacts. By ensuring contacts are regularly updated, you can keep track of people in a more thorough way. For instance, if your business is evacuated because of a fire, you can double-check counts to your list of contacts, and you can reach out to anyone not accounted for.

2. Designate and Assign Clear Evacuation Routes

An emergency contingency plan should include several exit routes designed to lead outdoors from every point in the building. Additionally, employees should be assigned a route that corresponds to their section of the building. This allows evacuations to happen in an orderly and predictable manner.

3. Design a Way To Account for Employees

You may also want to assign specific floor managers to specific exit routes, making them responsible for counting and verifying everyone assigned to their route. This will make accounting for all personnel easier, and it will allow a small group of managers to interact and check numbers.

4. Know Who Is Responsible for Reporting Fires

You should assign the task of reporting fires to specific people yet encourage others to call as well. By assigning the responsibility, you ensure someone reports the problem, but by encouraging others, you make certain that no one drops the ball.

Beyond reporting fires to emergency services and your insurer, you should keep a disaster restoration specialist in the Lakeland, FL, area on file. These professionals may even set up an emergency plan with you, making the process that much easier.

A proper contingency plan in the event of an emergency can be the difference between life and death. Keep your employees and yourself safe by planning ahead, and seek assistance when and if you need it.

Use Chemical Drain Cleaners Cautiously

1/4/2022 (Permalink)

Bottles with detergent and cleaning tools on blue background When you find water or sewage damage in your home, be sure to call the trained experts at SERVPRO for mitigation services.

Chemical Drain Cleaners Should Be Used With Caution

It’s easy to understand why people look to chemicals for a clogged drain. Use them, and there is no need to pay a plumber or purchase and use plumbers’ tools. Unfortunately, it’s not quite that simple.

Never Use a Chemical Cleaner on a Completely Blocked Drain

Television advertisements would have you believe that clearing a clogged drain is simple. Apply the chemicals, the sewer blockage disappears and the toxic chemicals go with it. This process may work in see-through glass pipes and cartoon simulations, but it overlooks the real-world problems.

Chemical cleaners are highly corrosive, generate large amounts of heat and are very toxic to humans and the environment. It is these characteristics that make them unsuitable for use in a blocked sewer. Consider the following:

  1. Corrosive chemicals can weaken or damage metal pipes. Corrosion occurs naturally over time. Drain cleaners speed up this process. If a pipe leaks while it contains toxic material, the leaked liquid poses extreme health and environmental hazards.
  2. Heat can damage plastic pipes. They don’t corrode like metal, but they can fail due to excessive heat. If they start leaking, the risks are the same as with metal.
  3. If your chemical drain cleaner doesn’t work, don’t try a different one. Adding more toxic chemicals would be a terrible idea. Doing this might create a poisonous gas which would require evacuation and a visit from the Dixieland, FL Hazardous Material Unit.
  4. Toxic chemicals make the plumber’s job more dangerous. If all else fails, call the plumber. Hopefully, the plumber can fix your blockage without disturbing the pipes. However, if new pipes become necessary, the plumber must take great care to avoid chemical exposure.

The Worst-Case Scenario Is That the Blocked Sewer Pipe Fails

The sewage and toxic chemicals in the clogged drain have flooded your beautiful home. Sewage cleaning calls for a team of sewage and contamination removal technicians to remediate the problem. They will make your home look “Like it never even happened”.

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