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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Archived Blog Posts

Furnace Maintenance Tips

2/26/2020 (Permalink)

Technician is checking air conditioner and the words KEEP IT MAINTAINED on the left top side of the picture Keep your furnace and air conditioner maintained for best results and lower costs

You depend heavily on the various appliances in your Weston, FL, home. When cold weather hits, you can't do without a properly functioning furnace. This device can turn a miserable situation into comfort. Unfortunately, failing furnaces are also big culprits for house fires and the need to do fire cleaning. Don't become the victim of a terrible tragedy. With proper maintenance and upkeep, you'll not only enjoy the benefits of this appliance, but you'll reduce the risk of a fire in your home.

General Advice

If you are purchasing a new furnace, make sure a reputable technician installs it. Spend the money on a quality brand and model. Your financial commitment will pay dividends down the road. Keep these things in mind as well:

  • Keep children and pets away from the furnace.
  • Keep flammable materials away from the furnace.
  • For any repair issues, refer to the owner's manual or consult a professional.

Keep an Eye on the Filters

You may not ever have to worry about smoke cleaning if you'll keep your furnace running well. One of the best ways to do this is to replace the filters regularly. Most models and most types of filters require monthly replacements. Some allow you to go two or three months. Either way, don't forget to put in new filters regularly. Failing to do so will cut down on the unit's efficiency and may even start a fire.

Don't Forget the Inspections

If you have a fire in the home, it's comforting to know that professional fire remediation teams can handle even the most complex fire cleaning jobs. However, with yearly inspections of your furnace, you may never have to worry about fires. Even if your unit is newer, get an annual tuneup. Call a professional to look it over and make any necessary repairs or adjustments. It's best to do this just before winter arrives.
To avoid the stress of fire cleaning, keep your furnace working correctly. Consistent attention will help you reduce many risks of fires at home.

How Do I File an Insurance Claim After My House Floods?

2/24/2020 (Permalink)

After a home flood, many residents feel like they are treading water, trying to figure out where to begin in the restoration process.

Cleaning up the water damage, making the right calls, and restoring your life take time.

These simple steps can help you stay on track as you go through the necessary procedures of filing an insurance claim.

1. Look Over Your Policy
When you first moved into your house, you probably acquired a home insurance policy, but do you remember what kind of coverage it includes? The first step toward filing a claim is getting into your filing cabinet and scanning your policy paperwork. Glance over the basics of your coverage. Write down your questions. Look up your agent's phone number, and prep for a call with them.

2. Speak With Your Agent
Now that you have the essential information gathered, it's time to ask a few questions. Get in touch with your agent to ask about these important topics:

  • What are my policy benefits?
  • What are the procedures for filing a claim?
  • How long are the timelines for approving claims?

3. Record Damage
After contacting your insurance provider, take some time to create a thorough record of the damage. Your report may be made up of photos, videos, and even written memory. Include dates and times alongside as much evidence as you can provide to prove the validity of your claims.

4. Get a Free Estimate
Most home flood restoration companies offer a free cost estimate of their services. A detailed estimate is helpful to add in your report to the insurance company. It may help them to predict costs and move more quickly in filing your insurance claim. Be sure to let your insurance adjuster know which Weston, Florida, restoration company you prefer.

As you work toward restoring order in your Weston home, follow these simple tips to stay organized. Whether you have a pipe burst or a leaky roof, address all water insurance claims right away to expedite the process.

Restoring Water Damaged Electronics

1/29/2020 (Permalink)

Above view of laptop with water drop damage liquid wet and spill on keyboard Water damaged electronic

Restoring Water Damaged Electronics

A flood in your building is devastating enough. What do you do, though, when this deluge affects technology? For many in business owners in Weston, FL, these flooded electronics are essential to track sales, contact clients and produce merchandise. Their loss, then, is not only a painful expense but also a frustrating waste of time and productivity. Restoring them becomes vital. During any efforts to do so take care to protect yourself as well as seek the professional assistance of a local water restoration company.

1. Shut Down Power

Be safe with electronic damage. First, cut off the main power supply. Then, relocate yourself away from any water. Complete the following: check that the device is no longer on, the plug is completely off and you feel comfortable removing it. Batteries are hazardous too, so remove them only if they do not show signs of distress. Should you have any doubts, a remediation team can come in and inspect the premises, handling this for you.

2. Evaluate Each Device

Many flooded electronics can be dried out, but you may want to find out the severity of damage first. Have the pH tested, determining whether it's salvageable. You want a number close to seven. Anything too high or too low has a great impact. Next, ask the experts about their available technology. They often have more sophisticated equipment that can retrieve files and save hard drives.

3. Dry and Clean

Take everything completely apart, ensuring it all airs out. Then, you'll need to clean the elements. Pay attention to the circuit board, soaking it in isopropyl alcohol or distilled water. Grab a toothbrush or something soft and scrub away any debris. Dry under a heat lamp or with a hair dryer. At this point, put it all back together, looking for any parts that need additional replacement or repair.
Your flooded electronics can be saved, but it takes patience and time. Take care to eliminate electrical currents and sanitize the pieces.

The Value of Good Organization in an Emergency

1/23/2020 (Permalink)

Two green vehicles parked in front of a SERVPRO office SERVPRO professionals ensure rapid response, damage assessment, advanced training and effective equipment

Often overlooked in the confusion of a flood or a fire, is the importance of maintaining a cool head and keeping tabs on what has been accomplished and what needs to be done. While it is crucial to keep the focus on cleanup and safety, it's also necessary to make smart decisions and pay attention to costs and expenses. This is one of the main reasons a SERVPRO franchise offers many advantages when it's time to file an insurance claim. By adhering to IICRC standards, and by working efficiently, professional technicians reduce the costs of claims. By remaining organized, a professional disaster remediation franchise speeds up and simplifies the paperwork for all parties.

Excellent and Organized Records

For an insurance claim to be approved good records must be kept. The following information should be clear and understandable:

  • The number of man hours needed for recovery
  • The type of mitigation equipment used
  • The amount of damages and losses suffered
  • The type of restoration materials used

A claims information center helps provide an itemized list of losses, both in worksheets and backed up when possible with photo evidence. To make things easier for the insurance agent, all of the pertinent information is compiled and available electronically or by hard copy.

Competent Working Relationships

A commercial emergency in Weston, FL, involves a number of entities. This includes the cleanup franchise, the insurance company, outside vendors and sometimes even government agencies. It's important they can all work together and follow a similar goal as well as adhere to basic standards. Working with SERVPRO professionals ensures rapid response, damage assessment, advanced training, effective equipment on hand and help on the insurance claim. A proven process helps the recovery process run smoothly, from start to finish. The result is a cleanup and recovery that limits a business interruption and a claims process that is straightforward and results in fair payment to clients.

What Color Is Your Water? 3 Types That Can Affect Your Health

1/17/2020 (Permalink)

Flooded bathroom Knowing what type of water is in your home will be extremely important to the team coming to mitigate it. Make sure you know!
You know you’ve got a leak, but do you know what type of water you are dealing with? If your Weston, Florida home needs wastewater cleanup, it is important to determine the category type so you can minimize exposure to contaminated water.

There are three water types:

  1. category one - white water
  2. category two - gray water
  3. category three - black water

All three can affect your health differently.

White Water

Category one is considered clean water because it is free of contaminants. White water poses no health risk because it has not come into contact with potentially harmful substances. Rainwater and water from a faucet, broken pipe, supply line or a refrigerator are all common examples. While category one may sound innocuous, it is important to know that in a short 48 hours, water can turn from white to gray.

Gray Water

Category two is called gray water, and it is considered contaminated water. It is harmful for humans to ingest because chemicals, soaps or similar contaminants are present. Examples are water from a dishwasher, washing machine, shower/sink drain or fish tank. If gray water is left stagnant, then it can transition to category three within two days or less.

Black Water

Category three is the most dangerous water. It contains bacteria and pathogens that are extremely harmful to humans. Black water can come from sewage lines, RV holding tanks or toilets. Effectively managing category three water requires professional restoration services. All affected surfaces must be cleaned, sanitized and dried completely before humans can come in contact with those areas.

Understanding the difference between black, gray and white water will help keep your Weston, Florida home free from unsafe contaminants. If you aren’t certain what type of water you have, it is wise to consider it category three until a professional can confirm that you don’t have contaminated water. Be smart! Keep yourself healthy by treating the three water types accordingly.

Why Mold Grows in Air Ducts and What To Do About It

1/9/2020 (Permalink)

Mold growth in air duct Excessive moisture in the air can encourage additional mold growth

Mold can appear on nearly any surface. If it grows in your office's air ducts, the spores could spread throughout the rest of the property. That is why you need to perform proper HVAC cleaning.

More About Mold

Mold is a natural fungus that plays an important role in nature. However, it can easily come inside commercial buildings through open doors or windows.
Excessive amounts of mold can cause severe damage to your Weston, FL, property. You then may have to spend company profits on black mold cleanup services.
Since mold thrives in moist areas, it can quickly grow within air conditioning and heating units. Common locations for mold within HVAC systems include:

  • Coils
  • Drip pans
  • Ductwork

Specifically, mold will grow on the dust that has collected inside the ducts. You should thus check these ducts for dust frequently and do any necessary HVAC cleaning.

Finding Mold

In fact, you should regularly inspect the various parts of the heating and air conditioning system. This is particularly important if your property is humid. After all, the excessive moisture in the air can encourage additional mold growth.
You should similarly look for any condensation or pooling water within the system. A blocked drain or drip pan could lead to a buildup of mold, as well.
Of course, not every air duct is easily visible. However, mold also typically gives off an unmistakable smell.
If you or your employees smell mildew on the premises, try turning off your HVAC system for 10 to 20 minutes. An odor that disappears or weakens during that time is likely evidence of a mold problem within the ducts.

Next Steps

Once you do see or smell the fungus, do not attempt the mold cleanup yourself. Mold remediation specialists will have the proper tools and techniques for cleaning vents and other moldy locations.
By performing regular HVAC cleaning, you can avoid mold damage to your commercial building. This will keep your assets safe and prevent the fungus from destroying your property.

Is Your Business Ready for Heavy Storms?

12/26/2019 (Permalink)

Causes of business interruption Business interruption insurance helps protect you from the effects of revenue losses

When a major storm system causes power outages or leads to wind or flood damage, you don't want to wonder whether your storm insurance covers all your losses. Concerns about lost inventory, damaged property, and the loss of daily revenue are stressful enough without having to wonder what your insurance coverage does or does not include.

What Does Storm Insurance Cover?

Although policies vary from one provider to another, you can expect your storm insurance to cover

  • Interior property damage
  • Replacement or repairs to damaged inventory
  • Business interruption losses


Your regular business insurance may provide a lot of peace-of-mind, but it isn't enough to keep you afloat when storm damage closes your doors.

Interior and Exterior Damages

Heavy winds, a lot of rain, icy snow days, and extreme temperatures can damage the structure of your building, requiring the attention of water and storm cleanup experts before you can safely reopen your doors. In addition to those costs, you may also have damages inside your building.

Replacement or Restoration Costs

Primary damages aren't the only things you'll need to worry about; water often leads to secondary damages, such as mold growth. Your storm insurance may cover the costs of repairs, restoration, or the replacement of inventory and damages. Professionals generally focus on restoration before replacement to keep your costs down.

Business Interruption Insurance

If you have to close your doors during the restoration and rebuilding process, business interruption insurance helps protect you from the effects of revenue losses. Don't wait for storms to hit before purchasing this additional coverage. The best time to consider the benefits of special insurance policies is before your business has been disrupted.

When you know what your storm insurance policy will cover before dark clouds roll in, you won't have to worry about what damage the winds will cause. You'll know that your Weston, FL, business is ready to survive the storm.

4 Tips for Filing a Fire Claim

12/26/2019 (Permalink)

A fire destroyed five stores The aftermath of a fire in your commercial building in Weston, FL, can be overwhelming

4 Tips for Filing a Fire Claim

The aftermath of a fire in your commercial building in Weston, FL, can be overwhelming. There are so many things to remember to do. You must find a way to keep your business running while you find a fire restoration company that can make repairs quickly. Then you have to figure out a way to pay for all of it. These four tips can help you file your fire claim so that you don't have to worry about where the money to cover the cleanup process is going to come from.

1. Call Your Insurance Company

One of the first calls you should make after a fire is your insurance company. Adjusters can get a better idea of how much your claim is worth if they can see the fire damage as soon as possible. It also shows your provider that you are being proactive.

2. Call Restoration Specialists

The sooner you can start repairs, the less likely your building is to sustain secondary damage such as mold or extensive water damage. The team that assesses your property can also provide an itemized list of needed repairs. This information can be a crucial support to your fire claim.

3. List Damages

Don't depend solely on the restoration company and your insurance adjuster to notice everything that needs to be repaired or replaced. Be prepared to provide a list of damaged items and the cost of replacing them.

4. Take Pictures

There is probably a place on your claim form to include pictures or videos of the fire damage. Visual documentation of the issues with your building can help substantiate your claim. Pictures are particularly helpful if the adjuster doesn't arrive within hours of the fire. You can show the original damage with a photograph or video.
The key to getting your fire claim accepted is gathering as much information as possible. If you can list and show damages and have your list supported by the professionals hired to clean up the mess, your claim is more likely to be accepted.

When Should You Flush a Water Heater?

12/23/2019 (Permalink)

Hand attaches hose to a home water heater to perform maintenance Find out how often you should flush the water heater at a residence in Weston, FL

When Should You Flush a Water Heater?

Water heaters need regular maintenance to work efficiently without leaking. Mineral buildup develops over time and forces these appliances to work harder, which may shorten operational life. The tanks in water heaters can also leak and cause water damage. Find out how often you should flush the water heater at a residence in Weston, FL.

Household Size

The frequency with which water heaters should be flushed depends on the number of people living in a household. It is generally recommended to flush these appliances at least once a year or more often if more than two people reside in a home:

  • Flush yearly in a household with one to two residents
  • Flush once every eight months in a household that has three to five residents
  • Flush once every six months in a household of more than six residents

These water heater flush guidelines apply to residences with average water quality. It may be necessary to flush more often if your water has high mineral content.

Water Properties

A water heater may make popping noises as water is forced through mineral deposits. If these noises grow louder until you use a de-liming solution or flush the tank, your water is probably hard. Water quality tests can be helpful for assessing particulate levels and determining whether to install a whole-house water filter or softener.

Repair and Replacement

If you notice issues that involve heating or plumbing components, you should contact an appliance repair specialist or plumber. Supply line leaks are also relatively easy to fix. If the tank has corroded to the point where it has begun to leak, you probably need to replace the entire unit.

Regular flushes and inspections can ensure that a water heater has a long operational life. If this appliance leaks and causes water damage, you should consult with residential mitigation and restoration professionals in Weston, FL.

Common Causes of a Flooded Basement

12/13/2019 (Permalink)

Completely flooded basement. It is visible line showing maximum water level higher than 7 feet. Flooded basement in Weston, FL

Common Reasons That Water Invades a Basement

A basement flood can cause a lot of damage to your home and personal belongings. The sooner you can get the water out, and keep it out, the less damage you are likely to sustain. There are several common reasons that water is likely to invade a basement in Weston, FL.

1. Location of Your Home

Water always takes the path of least resistance, so if your home happens to be sitting downslope from other areas of your property, water will head straight for your foundation. You could wait to see if erosion forms a different path or install some underground drainage pipes or landscaping to re-route the water.

2. Poorly Designed Drainage System

For protection against a flooded basement, a properly designed drainage system should route water at least 6 feet out from your foundation. If water is coming down the side of your house, or back toward your house, it is likely to overload the weeping tile and allow water to seep into your basement. During major storms, especially when water is left to sit, this can cause a basement flood.

3. Over Flowing Sump Pump

Sump pumps are designed to take in extra ground water. They hold the water so that it does not leak in and cause water damage to your home. If they take in more water than they can handle, extra water will seep out into your basement. To keep this from happening, monitor the water level during major storms and check them yearly.

4. City Gutter System

When city gutters get clogged with debris, it can have disastrous consequences for home owners. If you notice water coming out of gutters or not draining properly, call your city officials immediately.
With proper home maintenance, planning, and design, the risk of a basement flood can be diminished. If you have already sustained water damage, a professional water restoration company can help with water extraction and restoration.

What To Do if You Find Mold in Your Home

11/27/2019 (Permalink)

Close up of hand shut off main valve Turn off the water source

Use the Following Tips If You Find Signs of Mold 

There are a variety of reasons why you may find black mold in your Weston, FL, home. Mold growth is a common problem experienced by many homeowners. This fungus can spread easily throughout the house, so it is important to take the proper steps to prevent this. Use the following tips if you find signs of mold in the building.

1. Turn Off the Water Source

If you are finding black mold as a result of a damaged pipe, overflowing plumbing or broken appliance, then one of the first things you should do is turn off the water source. This will keep the water from building up and help prevent the problem from getting worse.

2. Remove Moisture From the Area

Because mold grows very easily in moist environments, you should remove as much moisture as possible from the affected area. If there is excessive water, remove it quickly. Allow it to dry thoroughly, as this can keep the mold from spreading further. If you have a reoccurring moisture problem, you may want to invest in a dehumidifier.

3. Limit Air Circulation

This fungus spreads via mold spores, which are too small to be seen with the naked eye. If mold is growing in your house, these spores can travel through the air to other areas, creating a larger infestation. To keep this from happening, turn off your HVAC system, air conditioners or fans.

4. Do Not Attempt DIY Removal

While it may seem like a good idea to do your own mold cleanup, you will likely not have the best results. It is easy to accidentally spread mold throughout the house, so this process should be left to professionals with the necessary training and equipment.
Black mold can be a frustrating problem, but you do not have to deal with it on your own. Contact a mold remediation specialist to take care of it for you. They will be able to locate and remove any mold growth and identify the cause to prevent it from returning.

FEMA Grants Sometimes Help People Without Flood Insurance

11/22/2019 (Permalink)

FEMA US Homeland Security Citizen and Immigration Services Flyer Closeup If you are in a declared disaster zone, you can apply at the website or call the FEMA helpline

Floods have plagued humankind since long before records began. They also provide nature’s deadliest force, with as many as two million people killed by a single flood in 1887. Unfortunately, they are becoming more common as the weather changes, and most property owners don’t realize that their homeowner’s insurance policies do not include flood insurance in Weston, FL. While laws usually prohibit building new homes in a floodplain, many existing structures are in danger.

Fortunately, in cases of a wide-scale flood, the state or U.S. governments may declare an official disaster. When the federal government does this, it often comes with grants from the Federal Emergency Management Agency that can be a tremendous help to homeowners in their greatest time of need.

Who Qualifies for FEMA Aid?

If you live in an area that’s been declared a federal disaster zone, you may qualify for grants to help cover some of your losses. Areas that are covered are listed on the federal disaster assistance website. To be eligible, you must meet these criteria:

  • You must be a U.S. citizen or reside in the U.S. legally.
  • You must be able to verify your identity and place of legal residence.
  • You either don’t have flood insurance, or it isn’t enough to cover your needs.
  • Other forms of available aid do not cover all your damage.
  • Your expenses and needs are the direct results of the declared disaster.

How Do You Apply?

If you are in a declared disaster zone, you can apply at the website or call the FEMA helpline at 1-800-621-3362. You should have all the relevant information at hand when you apply, including your address, the names of everyone residing there, a description of the damages, the type of any insurance you have and your contact information.
Once a house has experienced flood damage in Weston, FL, it needs immediate professional remediation to prevent further damage and begin the cleanup process. It’s essential to dry out everything as soon as possible and get the ball rolling on grants or flood insurance claims to restore your home to its former condition.

Take Extra Care With Your Space Heater

11/22/2019 (Permalink)

Space heater A burned space heater is bad news. Take the necessary precautions to keep your home safe

A fire in your home can come from a bewildering number of appliances, devices and situations. These include grills that are too near a home, stoves that are left on and faulty wiring, to name a few. A burned space heater is another common cause of home fires. As the colder weather ushers in, people are more likely to use space heaters to stay warm in basements, on porches and in areas of the home that receive less heat. To avoid a fire in Weston, FL, make sure you take extra care with any portable devices that bring supplemental heat to your home.

Safety Tips

To limit your chances of dealing with a burned space heater, several common sense precautions go a long way. Follow these measures to keep everyone in your home warm but safe:

  • Use portable heaters in well-ventilated areas
  • Connect to the electrical grid with approved chords with grounding
  • Check for frayed chords
  • Keep any filters clean
  • Turn off the device when you are out of the room
  • Provide adequate space around the heater

The final measure listed is among the most common reasons for a space heater fire. Curtains, bedding and furniture can go up in flames rapidly, resulting in a quick conflagration in the home. Also important is to look for a portable device that has advanced safety features, and be sure to repair or discard a heater that is shorting out or throwing sparks.

Cleanup Tips

When a fire strikes your home, be sure to call in a professional fire remediation team in Weston, FL. They are available 24/7, are Faster to Any Size Disaster, and can help with everything from smoke cleanup to submitting your damages to the insurance company. You will be able to return to your home quickly with expert help.
A burned space heater is bad news. Take the necessary precautions to keep your home safe.

How a Strong Building Envelope Protects Your Business

10/30/2019 (Permalink)

Construction details - framing installing the roof truss system A strong building envelope provides peace of mind

How a Strong Building Envelope Protects Your Business

Powerful storms are among the most damaging events to impact your business. No matter where your company is located, at some time a destructive weather pattern will visit your area. Strong winds, heavy rains, frequent lightning and hail are unavoidable. Solid preparation is key to surviving the effects of wind and rain damage in Weston, FL. One valuable step to take is knowing who to call in an emergency, such as highly-trained technicians experienced in storm damage mitigation. Erecting an impermeable membrane around your building's exterior is a great way to limit your exposure to severe weather. A strong building envelope consists of the following fortifications:

  • Quality Windows. Strong windows keep out moisture and hold up to high winds and hail. They should be firmly sealed to prevent rain damage.
  • A Strong Roof. A well-maintained roof protects your building and its contents by keeping prolonged rains at bay. Regular inspections and maintenance should be performed to ensure this vital structure is in good shape. By keeping moisture out, you eliminate the conditions that allow black mold to proliferate.
  • Solid Walls and Siding. Cracked walls and old siding provide access for water to infiltrate your building. High winds can also rip off inadequate siding, leaving your building exposed to bad weather.
  • An Effective Drainage System. Without gutters, downspouts and drains, all of that water from a storm has nowhere to go. A proper drainage system moves water away from the buildings and grounds and reduces stress on the building's integrity.

A water-tight building also includes mechanisms to control the conditions for air, vapor and temperature. Still, the primary threat to a building is water infiltration. This is the main cause of complaints from building owners and is often the subject of lawsuits and insurance claims. To protect your building from the negative effects of rain damage, a strong building envelope provides peace of mind.

Smart Strategies for Cleaning Wet Items

10/14/2019 (Permalink)

Wet clothes Consider dry cleaning for wet clothes

When water in home creates damage to furniture and clothing you need a strategy to know which items you can keep. It's possible that the water damage for some materials is too extensive to salvage them. This will not be the case for everything, though. When a water leak happens in Weston, FL, it's good to have water cleanup professionals to rely on. They will be able to guide you through the entire process of recovering from a water loss. Part of this process is cleaning valuable items that have gotten wet but are still recoverable.

The Cleaning Process

Many of the items in your home are irreplaceable or have sentimental value. Family heirlooms, wedding dresses, photographs and antique furniture, to name a few items, are too important to discard without a fight after water in home. Here are some general tips for recovering beloved items:

  • For still wet objects, wash with a clean cloth or a fine spray to clean off dirt
  • Where possible, air-dry objects in a slow process to avoid warping and splitting
  • Reduce the humidity in the home with fans, dryers, dehumidifiers and air conditioners
  • Exercise care with fragile objects such as photo albums
  • Rinse off metal objects with clean water and wipe dry with a soft cloth
  • Consider dry cleaning for clothes

For some items, you might need professional help. Glass or ceramic objects that have been broken may be able to be restored by antiquarians. Paintings may also be able to be touched up by the right company. Groups such as the American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works and the National Institute for the Conservation of Cultural Property are worth consulting for more information.

The Smart Steps

A broken pipe or rising floodwaters can spoil many items in your home. A careful cleanup process by professionals is the fastest way to recover. Water in home can be removed and many of your valuable items will be as good as new after a cleaning.

Consider Content Cleaning to Eradicate Smoke Damage

10/7/2019 (Permalink)

A piece of clothing damaged by fire smoke Clothing damaged by fire

If your home in Weston, FL, experiences a fire, safely getting out is the first priority. After the fire subsides, and it is time to assess the damage, the feeling can be overwhelming. If there has been extensive destruction, a fire restoration professional has the tools and know-how to eliminate the fire damage. A top concern is often the lingering smoke issues. While dry-cleaning clothes is easy, getting the rest of the contents of the house smelling fresh can be difficult.

Professional Cleaning

Although it may initially feel like nothing is salvageable, content cleaning is a professional method to restore the majority of belongings back to new. While not everything can be saved, more items than you may think can often be preserved:

  • Clothing
  • Furniture
  • Artwork
  • Electronics
  • Heirlooms
  • Documents
  • Books
  • China, silver and crystal dishware
  • Light fixtures
  • Musical Instruments
  • Photographs
  • Rugs

The Content Cleaning Process

Similar to dry-cleaning, this method uses ultrasonic equipment, deodorizers and other means to eradicate the smoke smell. Ultrasonic cleaning is a safe method that involves placing items in a tank of liquid and using high-frequency sound waves as scrubbers. Although the process takes time, it is worth the effort. The procedure typically involves the following steps:

After an assessment, items that can be salvaged are packed up and inventoried. They are then transported for cleaning.
The belongings are kept in a special content storage facility. These are climate-controlled locations designed to ensure belongings aren’t affected by extreme heat or cold.
Each item is cleaned according to the best methods. After they are cleaned, they are repacked in new containers and wrapping to ensure their safety and protect them from contamination.
Once repairs are completed to the inside of the house, the cleaned items are returned to your home.

Getting back from a disaster takes time so make sure you don’t go it alone. Instead, get peace of mind from experts in dry-cleaning and content cleaning.

3 Mold Cleanup Tips for Homeowners

9/25/2019 (Permalink)

There is a big hole starting from the ceiling going down to the wall of a home Water leaks causes mold growth in a Weston, FL home

How to Clean Small Amounts of Mold in Your Home

House mold is a common problem that affects many homes in Weston, FL. Finding mold spores in your home can be overwhelming, and many homeowners don't know how to begin the cleanup process. However, there are several tips you can follow to begin cleaning after mold growth affects your home.

1. Stop Any Sources of Water Leaks

Often, mold spores are the result of water damage. Whether a pipe burst, broken appliance or a leaky faucet has resulted in the growth of mold in your home, it can be wise to quickly stop any water that is flowing into your home as quickly as possible in order to mitigate the damage. If there isn't a leak and mold has instead grown in humid areas in your home, then it's generally helpful to reduce the levels of humidity inside your house.

2. Treat Each Surface Appropriately

When it comes to house mold, not every surface should be treated the same. It's often wise to know how to appropriately treat individual items that have sustained mold damage, as improper treatment could cause further damage. To clean surfaces that won't easily absorb water, such as tile or laminate, using detergents and scrubbing away mold can be useful. However, you should avoid scrubbing mold from any porous surfaces, as this could cause items to break down.

3. Consider Employing Professionals for Help Cleaning Delicate or Sentimental Belongings

Although it's often not too difficult to clean small amounts of mold from items that are made up of durable materials, there are some items that you may not want to clean on your own. Documents, photographs or electronics can also be particularly difficult to clean without access to specialized, and often costly treatments. Instead of attempting to clean your valuable or delicate belongings, it can be useful to employ mold remediation experts who can help to sanitize items that are difficult to clean.

Knowing how to clean small amounts of house mold can be helpful to homeowners. Stopping water from causing additional damage, properly cleaning and treating different surfaces and requesting assistance from professionals to clean certain items can help you to start the cleanup process.

What Happens to Affected Items After a Flood

9/25/2019 (Permalink)

Water on a keyboard of a computer Water damaged computer

When flooding occurs, your building and all it contains is likely affected. Your flooded company in Weston, FL, will need professional remediation services to repair the building. Technicians may also be able to offer cleanup for the contents of your building as well. Here is a snapshot of the overall process.

Assessment

Anything water touches has the potential for damage:

  • Office equipment
  • Furniture
  • Window treatments
  • Rugs
  • Files

When technicians are removing items from your building after a broken pipe has flooded it, they can determine whether each item is salvageable. Those that are not can be thrown out. Those that can be saved are stored safely until the proper restoration process can be completed.

Cleaning

Before items from your flooded company can be restored, they probably need to be cleaned. If your curtains are soiled, dry cleaning can not only remove stains but also any microbes from the water. Technicians have techniques for cleaning electronic equipment that is not irreparably damaged. The surfaces of office furniture can be disinfected. The cleaning step is necessary to help prevent secondary damage such as mold.

Restoration

For many items, a good cleaning is all they need to be fully restored and ready to return to your building. Some items, however, need further restoration. If, for example, a chair in the lobby developed mold growth, it may need to be reupholstered before it can be returned to the building. Soaked files may need extra time to dry, or you may decide to digitize all the files so that the paper copies can be discarded. The technicians in charge of the restoration process can determine when an item is ready.
While your main concern for your flooded company may be the structural damage it sustains, don't forget about the items that are also affected by the flooding. You may be able to salvage more items than you thought possible.

Why You Shouldn't Wait for an Adjuster After a Storm

9/9/2019 (Permalink)

Wooden floor warping from standing water Water also causes wood to warp and rot if left for an extended period of time

Why You Shouldn't Wait for an Adjuster After a Storm

After a storm in Weston, FL, you might think that you should wait for your flood insurance adjuster to begin doing anything to your damaged home. However, this is generally not the case. As long as it is safe to do so, it is a better idea to start on mitigation while you are waiting for help. The following are a few reasons why.

1. Damage Will Continue to Get Worse

You might think that if you let the water sit, everything will stay as it is, but this is not true. Particularly if you have flood damage in your home, it will only continue to worsen over time. Flood water is often highly contaminated and can contribute to the spread of bacteria throughout the house and your belongings. Water also causes wood to warp and rot if left for an extended period of time.

2. Mold Will Grow

Along with bacteria, mold damage will spread very quickly in water. Mold spores are present in most locations and often do not cause any trouble. However, when there is an excessive amount of moisture in the environment, this changes. This fungus thrives in moist environments and can begin to form colonies in as little as a day.

3. You Could Be Waiting For a While

When the water damage in your house comes from something like a burst pipe or broken appliance, waiting for help might not be as much of a problem. However, after a large storm, flood insurance adjusters will likely have several clients with similar damage. Because of this, it can take much longer for them to get around to your case. In this situation, waiting just doesn’t make sense.
Instead of waiting for your flood insurance adjuster after a storm, the best thing to do is document the damage before beginning mitigation. Taking pictures and listing affected areas will provide the evidence needed to file your claim. An emergency restoration company can help with this task before beginning work on the building.

Recovering From a Business Fire

8/27/2019 (Permalink)

Woman standing behind yellow caution tape that is in front of her fire damaged home Safeguard against trespassing

If your business in Weston, FL, has been adversely affected due to a fire loss, there are a few steps that you can take to make sure that recovery takes as little time as possible. Begin your road back to prosperity by considering the following:

Secure the building to guard against theft
Contact your insurance agency and file a claim for any losses incurred
Look into hiring fire restoration experts to help with cleanup

Safeguard Against Trespassing

To prevent adding insult to injury, ensure that the perimeter of the business is fenced off to discourage theft and vandalism. You can choose between temporary barriers or a chain-link type of fencing. If there is some type of deterrent for would-be thieves, the chances of incurring more loss are reduced. Another option is to hire security if there are high-dollar items in the business that can't be easily moved to another location.

Get In Touch With Insurance

A quick call to your agent will get a claim started in their system. Be sure to list any casualties that you have sustained due to the fire loss. It's always a good idea to document possessions or merchandise by snapping photos and storing them in a safe place in case disaster strikes. Remember to act swiftly because the sooner you file a claim, the sooner monetary relief will arrive.

Hire the Experts for Cleanup

A fire loss doesn't have to be the end of the road for your livelihood. Fire restoration professionals are available to help with the recovery process. They will be able to restore surfaces that have sustained water harm, make smoke damage disappear and protect your property from mold invasion after the fire department has left. An excellent cleanup service will also be able to handle emergency roof and window issues so the building is not exposed to the elements. If you follow these steps in the aftermath of a business fire, you can rest easy knowing that you will be well on your way to returning to regular operations.

5 Ways To Protect Your Commercial Building From Flood Damage

8/27/2019 (Permalink)

Very neatly manicured backyard with wood fence surrounding Use your landscaping to your advantage

5 Ways To Protect Your Commercial Building From Flood Damage

Flood damage is a concern for virtually every commercial property owner in Weston, FL. Here are five ways to protect your building.

1. Position electrical elements and heating and cooling components above the level to which the water might rise during flooding. This includes parts such as the following:

  • Wiring
  • Sockets
  • Switches
  • Circuit breakers
  • Furnaces
  • Water heaters

Ideally, these portions of your building's nervous system should be at least 12 inches above the expected flood line.

2. Raise outdoor equipment out of harm's way, too. Elevate and anchor the following:

  • Air conditioners
  • Generators
  • Fuel tanks
  • Outdoor electrical parts

Just like the indoor elements, these outdoor components should be stationed at least 12 inches above the maximum water line to avoid flood damage.

3. Install backflow valves. These will prevent sewage from backing up into your building in the event that the sewer system floods.

4. Use your landscaping to your advantage. Survey the slope of the land around your property. If water runs downhill toward your building, that can lead to storm damage during times of heavy rain or excessive snow melt. Building retaining walls, adding ponds and plants, installing drainage tiles, and even reshaping the terrain itself so that water flows away from your building can prevent extensive — and expensive — repairs later on.

5. If water is unavoidable, act fast. Sometimes, no matter what you do, water may work its way in. When that happens, work quickly to move important items such as computers, furniture, and records out of harm's way, ideally to a higher floor in the building. If that's not feasible, raise them off the ground. Do the same for any important equipment or major appliances. It may be wise to cut electricity to the entire building, too, to prevent surges and accidents.

Taking these precautions now won't 100% guarantee that you'll never need the help of an experienced flood damage cleanup company. It can, however, significantly increase your building's chances of avoiding destruction the next time a storm rolls in.

How Water Affects the Building Materials in Your Home

8/27/2019 (Permalink)

Servpro professional drying out water from floor Wet damage flooring in a Weston, FL home

How Water Affects the Building Materials in Your Home 

Nothing’s quite as worrying as water damage to your home in Weston, FL. Besides its contents, water can impact the physical structures and building materials inside. From swelling wood to soaked drywall, these substances react to flooding and saturation in a variety of ways. To understand what restoration entails, it’s worth taking a look at water’s effects on the common building materials used inside your home.

1. Swelling Wood

It’s a well-known fact that wood absorbs moisture. That’s because the cell walls of plants are designed to soak up water through osmosis. When water saturates items such as cabinets or subflooring, they drink it in and swell up as a result. In most cases, swollen wood items will need to be replaced. If not rectified, the wood will just keep on swelling and result in even more damage.

2. Drenched Drywall

Fortunately, drywall impacted by flooding may be salvageable. With a broken pipe, severe weather or even a supply line break, you’ve got a short window of time in which to act. Left alone, drywall will become weak and begin to crumble. An experienced water damage restoration company can dry out and restore the material.

3. Tile Flooring and Walls

Water damage and tile can be somewhat more complex. It depends on the type of tile used, how long the water sits and whether it permeates into unsealed grout. A couple of loose tiles can be deceptive, hiding damaged subflooring, drywall or plaster.

4. Carpet

Waterlogged carpet also presents a unique problem. Its salvageability largely depends on the type of damage present and how quickly you act. Clean water damage is more easily rectified since the carpet can be cleaned and dried out by professionals.

Reclaiming your home after water damage can be difficult, but the right restoration company will be Here to Help. If you need water pipe repair, have swelling wood or see other water damage, contact a restoration professional as quickly as possible.

3 Ways to Prevent Mold Growth in Your Commercial Building

7/29/2019 (Permalink)

vacuum cleaning a home with hardwood flooring Carpet cleaning with a HEPA vacuum

Prevent Mold Growth In Your Commercial Building

Mold problems are common in commercial buildings, so if you haven’t yet experienced one in your Weston, FL, facility, then chances are you will at some point in the future. There are, however, steps that you can take to make this problem less likely to occur. It is usually easier to prevent the growth of mold than it is to remove it once it has spread, so keep these tips in mind.

1. Clean Regularly

One of the best things that you can do to prevent mold from spreading is to regularly clean the building. Scrub down hard surfaces, particularly those that often come in contact with water such as sinks and showers. Regularly change air duct filters. Carpet cleaning with a HEPA vacuum will help as well since spores can easily gather in porous materials.

2. Limit Moisture Levels

Along with keeping everything clean, you will want to make sure the moisture levels in the building are not too high. This fungus needs water to grow and even just a small amount can contribute to the growth of mold spores. There are several ways that you can do this, such as opening windows to allow ventilation and using a dehumidifier to remove moisture from the air. You should also be sure to have any leaks repaired as soon as you notice them.

3. Use an Air Filter

Because you cannot see its spores, mold can travel through the air without your knowledge. If it has begun to grow in one area, it can move through the structure in this way until it becomes a large problem. The HEPA filters that you want for carpet cleaning work brilliantly in air purifiers as well to remove these spores from the air and keep them from contaminating your building.
While preventative measures such as carpet cleaning and limiting moisture can work well, you may sometimes find that they haven’t worked well enough. If you find or suspect mold growth in your building, contact a mold remediation specialist to have an inspection and any necessary cleanup done.

Preparing a Home Fire Escape Plan

7/19/2019 (Permalink)

Create a fire escape plan for your home in Weston, FL

Preparing a Home Fire Escape Plan

After safely following your family fire escape plan, recovering from a home fire inspires a lot of emotions and requires a lot of fire cleanup efforts on your part and from Weston, FL, professionals. Fortunately, organizations such as the Red Cross and fire damage cleanup professionals are prepared to help you through the process. Your top priorities at this time should include

  • Getting medical attention as necessary
  • Monitoring your own stress and that of your family
  • Avoiding smoke contamination during fire cleanup
  • Keeping pets near you and out of harm's way
  • Contacting loved ones to let them know you are safe

Be sure not to enter your fire-damaged home until you have approval from local fire authorities.

Create an Escape Plan

Fire damage is a possibility for all households. If you haven't experienced a home fire yet, today is the day to establish a fire escape plan for your loved ones. According to the American Red Cross and multiple fire safety organizations across the country, you may only have two minutes to get out of your home during a fire. To create your emergency escape plan, draw a graph of your floor plan. Mark all potential escape routes. Each person in your home should have at least two routes of escape.

Practice Escaping

Run fire drills at least twice a year and even more often if you have young children. Teach household members to crawl low to the ground to avoid smoke inhalation. Make sure children understand the importance of not opening bedroom doors if the doorknobs are hot. You must be sure they can get out of their bedroom windows safely.

Establish a Meeting Place

Finally, designate a place where the family will meet once they are safely out of the home. Make sure every member of the family knows not to reenter the home. Remember that your fire escape plan is only the first step in dealing with fire damage. Working closely with local Weston, FL, professionals can help you recover from the experience.

What To Do With a Flooded Crawlspace

7/11/2019 (Permalink)

Flood damage in a crawlspace

What To Do With a Flooded Crawlspace

When you have a home flood in Weston, FL, you may be wondering to what to do with the flood damage in your crawl space. Fortunately, through a few easy to follow steps your home can be restored.

1. Call a Professional

If you have flooding or storm damage in your home one of the first steps you may wish to take is to contact a water damage restoration company. These professionals have experience with a variety of types of damage that could result from a storm. They will also be able to assess any necessary repairs and come up with a schedule to have them conducted safely and efficiently.

2. Remove the Water

As soon as possible the water from a home flood should be removed from your crawl space. This may involve the use of a sump pump, a water pump, or even a water rated shop vacuum. Remember to follow the manufacturer's recommendations and instructions for any equipment that may be used. After the water is removed, you may want to use a dehumidifier in the area to help the drying process

3. Disinfect the Area

After any storm damage water has been removed from your crawl space, it's important to disinfect the area. Doing so may help prevent the growth of bacteria, as well as mold spores. There are a few ways the restoration team working on your home may go about this process, so if you have any questions its best to talk to them about any recommendations.

If you experience a home flood in your Weston, FL, residence then there are a few things you may want to consider doing. First, call a professional to assess the damage and help with any repairs. Second begin the removal of the water as quickly as possible. Also remember to thoroughly disinfect the area after the area has been dried. After this your repairs can begin.

Tips For Cleanup After a Building Fire

6/28/2019 (Permalink)

Consider placing a security fence on the periphery of the property

Cleanup Process in Your Building After a Fire

If your business in Weston, FL, has suffered from a crippling fire, there are a few things you can do to after the smoke has cleared to begin the cleanup process. Get started by doing the following:

  • Assess the extent of interior and exterior damage
  • Do a visual check for downed power lines
  • Erect a security fence to ensure safety and prevent trespassing

Get Assistance to Handle the Aftermath

An examination of your structure is necessary so you can form an opinion on what is salvageable and what needs to be disposed of. Depending on the severity of the disaster, remediation professionals in your area will be able to help with recovery and get your company back on its feet. They will be experienced in removing heavy soot produced by a fire disaster from furniture and carpeting. If the windows or roof are casualties of the flames, the pros are skilled at sealing any openings until repairs can be made. There will more than likely be an abundance of water breaches as well. Between the fire department hoses and general plumbing breakage, there will be no shortage of water to remove. Cleanup technicians utilize industrial pumps and truck-mounted vacuums to restore rooms to working order.

Safety Measures

Consider placing a security fence on the periphery of the property. This serves two purposes. First, it will keep the public away from the possible danger of falling debris or hazardous material on the ground. Secondly, a fence will discourage entry for thieves and deter loitering. Place yellow caution tape in areas where hardhats may be necessary or for a general warning. Be wary of any electrical issues such as severed lines or receptacles that have been compromised by water. The safest method is to cut power to prevent injury. Your peace of mind will be ensured with a security fence in place and a call to specialists who can help get business up and running in a timely manner.

3 Tips To Protect Your Business's Wood Floors From Water Damage

6/21/2019 (Permalink)

Water damage to hardwood floors

How to Keep Your Hardwood Floors Safe After a Flood

Whether a flood is caused by a pipe burst or a broken appliance, hardwood floors in your business in Weston, FL, can become damaged if they are not appropriately treated. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to keep your hardwood floors safe after a flood occurs.

1. Stop the Floodwater

When floodwater quickly accumulates in a business, the results can be disastrous. Stopping the floodwater quickly is often beneficial since smaller amounts of water are less likely to cause significant damage to your hardwood floors. If the cause of the flood is coming from within your building, you can generally stop the floodwater by shutting off the water to your whole building.

2. Quickly Relocate Damp Items

When water from a malfunctioning appliance or pipe burst is no longer actively flowing into your building, you can begin to relocate any items that got wet in the flood. Keeping damp items on your wood floor can allow water to damage the floor over time and can also make it more likely for the items themselves to sustain more damage. Once you have removed wet items from the area, you can better assess the damage to your floors and the damp items.

3. Dry the Floors

A wet floor is more likely to sustain damage if the water is not quickly removed. Mopping and putting towels down can often help to remove small amounts of water. However, removing large amounts of water may not be as simple. Though a wet vacuum can be useful to use on moderate amounts of water, you might consider contacting water damage restoration experts to assist in removing large amounts of water, especially if the water is contaminated.

Replacing hardwood floors can be expensive and time-consuming. However, stopping the floodwater, moving damp items and drying your floors as quickly as possible after a pipe burst or a broken appliance causes your building to flood can help you to prevent your hardwood floors from sustaining major water damage.

3 Things Homeowners Should Know About Mold Kits

5/30/2019 (Permalink)

Three vials with blue lids, one containing cream colored liquid and the other two with red liquid A mold testing kit can be incredibly misleading

Mold Kits

When homeowners in Weston, FL, suspect mold growth, they often think that purchasing a mold testing kit will help them determine whether or not mold is present. However, many of these kits are far from perfect.

1. How Do Kits Work?

Though instructions can vary, in order to use a mold kit, a sample of mold must be gathered. However, homeowners may be unsure how to precisely gather a sample from the appropriate area. Many kits give you the option to send the mold sample to a lab but waiting for the results can take an extended period of time. Though DIY mold kits may claim to identify the presence of but often do not tell homeowners what type of mold is present.

2. How Accurate Are Kits?

A mold testing kit can be incredibly misleading. A kit will almost always identify mold in the home, and this positive result can cause unnecessary stress to homeowners. However, mold spores are present throughout homes, and mold is not inherently harmful. Though certain levels of mold spores may indicate that there is a problem with mold growth in the home, a mold test kit generally can’t discern between safe and unsafe levels of spores.

3. What Are Accurate Alternatives to Kits?

Receiving an accurate assessment of what types of mold are present in your home and if the level of spores is harmful is often important. In order to receive an accurate assessment, it can be helpful to employ mold remediation specialists. Unlike kits, professionals can thoroughly inspect all areas in your home and can help to discover and fix the likely cause of the mold growth.

It can be useful to know if harmful mold is present in your home, but a mold testing kit is unlikely to be helpful in many circumstances. Not using these kits can make it easier to avoid confusion if you suspect your home has harmful mold present.

The PASS Method: Using a Portable Fire Extinguisher

5/22/2019 (Permalink)

It is wise to practice and memorize the acronym PASS

The PASS Method: Using a Portable Fire Extinguisher

While using a fire extinguisher may seem like a straightforward process, there is an order to the operation. Also, despite its minimalist design, during a fire panic sets in and even the most mundane tasks seem complicated. Therefore, it is wise to practice and memorize the acronym PASS – pull, aim, squeeze and sweep.

1. Pull the Pin

Extinguishing a fire early can reduce the amount of fire damage experienced as well as the cost associated with restoration. Therefore, to use an extinguisher, you must first remove the pin, breaking the seal around the handle.

2. Aim the Nozzle

Next, you will want to lift the fire extinguisher and aim the nozzle at the blaze. However, you may want to keep your fingers clear of the end of the nozzle because some extinguishers use CO2, which is forced out of the apparatus at frigid temperatures that may damage your skin if directly exposed. However, these units are typically used for grease or oil fires and are likely more common in a garage or kitchen fire.

3. Squeeze the Handle

Once the pin is pulled and the extinguisher is aimed, you can squeeze the handle. While all extinguishers are different, most require a fair bit of pressure and compression to release the extinguishing agents. Therefore, you will likely want to squeeze harder than you’d expect, especially in a high-pressure situation.

4. Sweep the Base

After completing the above steps, you can begin sweeping across the base of the fire. If you would like to get more comfortable with the action of sweeping, then you can contact the fire department or fire restoration specialist in the Weston, FL, area to find out about fire safety classes.

A fire extinguisher is your best friend when exposed to small, sudden fires. However, it pays to practice the PASS technique to ensure that you don’t freeze up when a real disaster strikes.

How To Guard Against Storm Damage

5/11/2019 (Permalink)

Check with your insurance agent ahead of time so that you know you have all the coverage you need

As a business owner in Weston, FL, you juggle many different responsibilities. You have to know how to prevent certain calamities, but it’s also important to have a plan in place for when emergency situations do arise. When local meteorologists say a spring storm is on its way, there are vital tasks to complete both before and after the storm hits.

Before the Storm

Preventing or minimizing storm damage differs from protecting against the potential problems inside the building. When you are up against the elements of nature, it’s important to make sure you can check the following items off your list:

  • Trim trees to minimize debris
  • Inspect the roof and repair weak spots
  • Clean gutters and downspouts
  • Seal windows
  • Repair cracks in walls and foundations
  • Elevate equipment off the floor, particularly on lower levels

You also want to make sure you have the right insurance coverage. Flood cleanup services after an intense or widespread spring storm may not be covered by your basic property policy. Check with your insurance agent ahead of time so that you know you have all the coverage you need.

After the Storm

Flood damage from a storm is different from the damage from a pipe break. Restoration professionals not only have to dry the building out during storm cleanup but also must disinfect everything the contaminated water touches. If the destruction is significant, you may have to relocate your business operations while the building undergoes repair.

It is in your best interest to make sure the restoration process starts right away. Secondary damage such as mold growth can occur within a day or two of the initial flooding. Call cleanup professionals immediately after the storm so you can get repairs started quickly.

While damage prevention is preferable, a spring storm that is strong enough can cause flood damage even if you do everything you can to prepare for it. By also having a restoration plan, you can get back to business as usual in a shorter amount of time.

How To Mitigate Invisible Fire Damage

5/10/2019 (Permalink)

The fire was small, how do I know what was damaged?

Flames damaged your commercial property in Weston, Florida. Afterwards, many structures and contents seem fine to the naked eye. However, not all fire loss is obvious. How can you tell what needs restored?

What Is a Partial Loss?

When a fire damages but does not completely destroy a building, it is considered a partial loss. In this instance, a fire restoration company inspects structures that may be impacted, including those hidden from view.

  • Interior systems such as plumbing, electrical and HVAC
  • Interior structures including the frame, walls, ceilings and flooring
  • Exterior structures like roofing, siding, foundation and windows

What Causes Damage in a Fire?

When your contents are burnt, it is easy to identify the cause as flames. There are other types of fire loss that occur when your building catches fire. Restoration companies use professional grade equipment to clean the resulting damage found in structures, contents and air.

  • Smoke damage is not always evident, but requires attention nonetheless. Smoke leaves a residue in the HVAC system, on furniture, in carpeting and other areas of your business.
  • Water damage is common due to fire sprinklers or hoses that put out the fire. This type of damage should be addressed immediately to prevent secondary problems, such as mold.
  • Extreme heat may cause invisible damage if your business was in close proximity to a fire. High temperatures may impact roofing, iron or steel structures, pipes or window frames.

What Are the Next Steps?

After a fire ravages your property, consider your safety first. Once you are safe, plan for restoration efforts as soon as possible.

  • Contact your property insurance agent to confirm coverage and file a claim. Coverage typically includes restoring the property to a uniform, consistent result. Therefore, partially damaged items are matched or replaced.
  • Arrange for a fire restoration company to inspect the property and begin the process of remediation.

A partial fire loss to your business in Weston, Florida, is still devastating. Even if the damage is not obvious, a thorough inspection and proper fire restoration procedures are key to returning to preloss condition.

3 Ways Water Damage Can Occur During a Fire

5/8/2019 (Permalink)

After a fire in Weston, Florida, you may find that part of restoring your business also includes water cleanup. But why are you cleaning up water damage if your company was on fire? The answer to this is a lot less complicated than you might think.

Three ways flooding can occur during a fire.

1. Fire Suppression Systems

In many cases, having a sprinkler or fire suppression system installed in your Weston business can help lessen potential smoke cleanup after a fire. However, depending on the volume of water the sprinkler system uses and how long it’s on, you may find some water left behind. Depending on your system type, water may be located only in the area where the fire was. If your sprinklers were designed to go off all together, there may be water throughout the building.

2. Fire Fighting Efforts

Another reason you may have some water cleanup to do after a fire is from the efforts of the firefighters saving your business. Depending on the amount of pressure provided, most fire hoses can spray at least 100 gallons per minute or more. That’s a lot of water going into your property. While this very water can save your business from burning down, it also may leave some flooding behind. In most cases, this type of water damage will be located in the same location as the fire it was aimed at.

3. Burst Pipes

Another way flooding can become part of your fire cleanup process is through burst pipes. In the same way extreme cold can cause damage to a pipe, extreme heat, such as a fire, can as well. A weakened pipe can potentially break and cause flooding.

Don’t be surprised if after a fire you’re also facing water cleanup. Between your fire suppression system, the efforts of the fire department, and the possibility of a weakened pipe bursting, water damage is not uncommon. Fortunately, many fire restoration professionals in Weston, Florida are also quite knowledgeable when it comes to flood damage. If needed, they may be able to give you a hand.

Selecting Shutters

4/23/2019 (Permalink)

Learn About Different Shutter Types

Many homeowners aren’t aware of the wide variety of styles and functions available in modern-day window protection mechanisms. Guard against high winds and other weather conditions in Weston, FL, by learning about different shutter types.

1. Storm Panel

The most inexpensive option for most areas and window types are called storm panel shutters. This model is not attached to the home by default and, under normal conditions, will be stored in a garage or outbuilding. Storm panels are typically made of a single piece of aluminum or steel, and are usually corrugated for extra strength. One panel piece is mounted to brackets on each window before a major storm. Although storm panels are cheap and don’t interfere with the default look of your home, they require more preparation time during emergency conditions.

2. Rolling and Accordion

The roll-down, roll-up, and accordion panel categories are somewhat more costly, but come with the natural advantage that your windows can be covered immediately in the event of high winds. This is because these models are made of strong and flexible steel or polycarbonate materials. This allows the entire panel to fold or roll away into a box or cavity near the window. During dangerous weather, the shutters can be drawn across the window manually, or in some cases, via an electrical motor. They then lock at the opposite side of the window for extra security.

3. Traditional

For the homeowner with additional aesthetic concerns, colonial and Bahama shutter designs provide even more options. These can be constructed from conventional materials like wood while still providing adequate storm protection. Colonial shutter panels are simply left open when not in use and provide a classic look. Bahama storm shutters can be propped open to create an awning during sunny weather.

Be prepared for high winds by understanding the best window safeguards for your home and environment. Sufficient foresight can prevent the need for storm damage cleanup later on.

Water damage cleanup in a business in Davie

4/18/2019 (Permalink)

Water damage cleanup in a business in Davie

If you have water damage in Davie, Florida, it is important to contact the folks at SERVPRO of Weston/ West Davie immediately. They have the team in place to handle any type of commercial water loss from start to finish.

The first step is to make sure all of the water is properly removed from the building. This is typically done with truck mount extractors and portable extractors. Once all of the water is removed, SERVPRO can then begin to place drying equipment throughout the building.

Each day a member of SERVPRO’s team will assess the drying process. The goal is to make sure that there is progress so the facility can be completely dry in a few days. Failure to dry quickly can result in secondary damage, like mold. SERVPRO of Weston/ West Davie has team members that are IICRC certified, which is the industry certification for water, fire and mold work. We take great pride in training and making sure we know everything and anything about the disaster restoration industry.

If you have any questions, do not hesitate to reach out to us at anytime. We are always here to help.

What to do if you have a commercial loss in Davie, Florida

4/18/2019 (Permalink)

Living in Davie, Florida there are many times each year where we have tremendous amounts of rain. If your business has a roof damage, it is quite possible you could deal with water damage. SERVPRO of Weston/ West Davie is the premier choice to help with any water or fire damage.

The first step with any water loss, is to make sure you get the water out of the building. SERVPRO of Weston/ West Davie is quick to respond with emergency services. They will quickly begin extracting water to get your facility dry as quickly as possible.

After all of the water is removed, SERVPRO of Weston/ West Davie will begin to place drying equipment throughout the property. Once the equipment is running for a few days, SERVPRO of Weston/ West Davie will monitor daily to make sure that proper drying is taking place.

After the job is complete, SERVPRO of Weston/ West Davie will remove all equipment and help with any necessary repairs that might be needed.

If you have any questions, do not hesitate to reach out to us at anytime.

3 Ways to Avoid Making a Small Business Claim

4/18/2019 (Permalink)

Contact your insurance company to review what covers your insurance policy when filing a business claim.

Tips To Avoid Filing A Business Claim

Damage to your Weston, FL building can be costly, and filing a business claim can be time-consuming. Luckily, there are a few ways that you can help prevent damage. Keeps these tips in mind to keep your building in top shape.

1. Prepare for Storms and Severe Weather

Water damage can happen easily during, or even after, a storm. If you know that you will be experiencing a rain or snow storm, being prepared can minimize damage to your building. Always make sure that windows and doors seal properly to keep out moisture and check for any cracks in the exterior of the building. If water gets inside the walls, you may find yourself with structural damage as well as mold growth. If the weather will be below freezing, making sure that the inside of the building is properly heated can prevent frozen, and subsequently broken, pipes.

2. Have Maintenance Done Regularly

Over time, pipes wear down and become more likely to break or leak. This can cause many problems, including severe water damage. If you do file a business claim and your insurance company finds that you did not properly maintain the property, your claim may be denied. Performing regular maintenance will prevent this and may keep you from experiencing damage in the first place.

3. Plan for Emergencies and Accidents

While properly maintaining your building can prevent some problems, there may be times when something beyond your control causes a pipe break. If this happens, having a plan can help you reduce the amount of damage that occurs. Know how to turn off the water supply to the building and block off areas to prevent water from spreading. This can make the process go more quickly if you need to hire an emergency restoration service.

There are some occasions when you may not be able to avoid filing a business claim. However, following these tips can help ensure that any damage is kept to a minimum.

Steps To Keep Employees Safe During Mold Remediation

4/11/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO always ready to help you with mold remediation.

How To Keep Your Employees Safe During Mold Remediation.

When mold removal is necessary in your business in Weston, FL, the safety of your employees can become a concern. There are several ways you can keep employees safe during mold remediation.

1. Removal of Damaged Items

Preventing the spread of mold can help keep employees safe. It’s often easy for mold to spread from one item to another, which is why any items that have been damaged by mold should be removed. Generally, experts in mold remediation know how to best remove the items without allowing the spores to spread. After items are removed, professionals can advise you whether restoration is possible or if replacement is necessary.

2. Containment

To further prevent mold from spreading, containment methods are often implemented in the mold removal process. Physical barriers are often put in place to keep mold contained. Additionally, reducing the airflow in a building makes it harder for spores to spread and makes it safer for employees to enter the building in an area that isn’t affected by mold. Airflow is often minimized by shutting windows, not using fans and turning off air conditioning in a building.

3. Dress Appropriately

It’s often preferable that employees do not enter a building that has been affected by mold, especially black mold, unless it is absolutely necessary. If mold is widespread and has not been contained, it’s wise to ensure that the employee is equipped with masks, gloves and clothes that can be thrown away after they are worn. Even if the mold is contained to one area, it can still be helpful for employees to take precautionary steps.

Mold removal is an important step in restoring your business after it has been affected by mold damage. By ensuring that items affected by mold growth are removed, having the area affected by mold contained and making sure anyone who enters the building dresses appropriately, employees can be better protected during remediation.

Can a Flooded Basement Be Restored?

3/24/2019 (Permalink)

Flooded basement in Weston,FL

Can a Flooded Basement Be Restored?

A basement flood can be one of the most stressful home hazards to deal with. Water damage, ruined carpet and flooring, and the growth of mold and mildew are all issues you’ll need to manage after a flood event. That’s why it’s important to take fast action and begin the cleanup process as soon as it’s safe to do so. By keeping a few guidelines in mind as you begin to restore your basement in Weston, FL, you can quickly and efficiently get it back to usable condition.

1. Remove all excess water. The first step in repairing a flooded basement is to eliminate as much moisture as possible. For just a few inches of water, a wet/dry vacuum should be sufficient. More extensive flooding will require a sump pump to drain the water away from your home. Avoid pumping the water outside too rapidly, as it can sink into your home’s foundation and cause it to crack.

2. Take inventory of all damage. Unfortunately, after a basement flood you’ll probably need to dispose of affected items that are beyond repair. This includes waterlogged carpet and flooring that are susceptible to mold growth, as well as any soaked furniture and pillows. All fresh food and canned goods that have had contact with floodwater should also be discarded. Double check your flood insurance coverage when assessing the damage to determine which items you can file a claim for.

3. Dry the area thoroughly. To prevent mold from infiltrating your basement after a flood, open any windows and doors to encourage ventilation. A dehumidifier can expedite drying time by removing moisture from the air. For professional assistance with the drying process as well as all other areas of flood remediation, consider contacting a reputable water damage restoration vendor.

While a basement flood may be an overwhelming situation to tackle, it’s imperative to remain calm and begin the cleanup process as soon as possible. By quickly removing all excess water, discarding affected items, and completing drying the impacted area, your basement will be ready for you and your family to enjoy again.

The Competitive Advantages of Using SERVPRO

3/24/2019 (Permalink)

Walls damaged due to water loss in Weston, FL

Insurance Companies Keep SERVPRO On Their Preferred Vendors List

As an insurance adjuster, you must answer to the home office, so you like to keep costs down when one of your customers calls with a disaster claim. At the same time, you know it is important to recommend a restoration and remediation company in Weston, FL, that provides the best possible service. That is why most insurance companies keep SERVPRO on their preferred vendors list. Here are just a few of the many ways working with the highly trained teams can give you a competitive advantage.

1. Electronic Files

When information about the disaster damage has been evaluated, the data can be loaded into a national database of claims called the Claims Inventory Service. Once the information is successfully stored, your clients, the contractor, and the service technicians can have instant access to all the facts and figures of the cleanup and restoration.

2. Evaluating Sites

When a property has been severely damaged by water or fire, it can be very difficult to see what can be repaired and what must be replaced. The highly trained technicians know restoring the site is less expensive than a tear out and replacement, and they have been taught how to evaluate and pretest the area in order to save everything they possibly can. As an insurance adjuster, you can appreciate the money they can save your company.

3. Faster Response

You know the longer water sits at the scene of a disaster, no matter how small the job is, the more liquid generally soaks into everything it touches. As the water sits, there is a greater chance for secondary damage such as split wood and mold. Once secondary damage occurs, the cost of the insurance claim often goes up accordingly. That is why it is important to rely on a fast response team.

Working with a highly trained restoration and remediation team can make your job as an insurance adjuster much easier. Also, keeping SERVPRO on your preferred vendors list can help you stay competitive.

Is Black Mold Growing In Your Home?

3/6/2019 (Permalink)

Black mold damage in a Weston, FL home

Black mold has a reputation as one of the worst types of house mold, as some species of stachybotrys are toxigenic. It is almost impossible for a homeowner to accurately identify any species of mold based on visual identification or the results of a DIY mold test. Take the following measures and schedule a mold inspection to determine whether stachybotrys or any other mold is present at a residence in Weston, FL.

Look For Visible Mold

Homeowners can take the first step toward determining whether mold is growing in a residence. Search for any signs of visible mold in moist, warm and relatively undisturbed locations:

  • Areas affected by leaks or pipe bursts
  • Attics
  • Basements
  • Bathrooms

Do not attempt to find mold that is not readily visible. This can result in exposure to microbial volatile organic compounds and cause spores to spread.

Contact a Hygienist or Specialist

A trained professional should perform a mold inspection. Contact an environmental hygienist or mold specialist. Some mold remediation services have experts on staff or partner with professionals. Only a hygienist or specialist should check for signs of hidden mold or perform a mold test.

Schedule a Mold Test

Professional testing is more accurate and the results are more specific than any home mold test. A hygienist or specialist may take air, bulk or surface samples to determine whether mold is growing in a household and identify which species are present. These samples will be analyzed in a lab, and the results are the only way to determine whether black mold is present.

It is difficult to visually identify mold. Several mold species appear black, and even stachybotrys can change in color depending on the stage of its growth cycle. If you suspect that mold is growing at a residence in Weston, FL, rely on a reputable company for house mold inspection, testing and remediation.

Tips for Restoration After a Large Storm

2/19/2019 (Permalink)

In case of a large scale damage SERVPRO is trained to deal with it

Tips for Restoration After a Large Storm

After a large storm, many homes and businesses can experience a catastrophic loss, especially in Weston, FL. Fortunately, a professional restoration team, such as SERVPRO, can help if your clients experience damage. Here are a few things many experts recommend in this situation.

1. Follow Safety Protocols

When it comes to flooding, there's a potential for contaminated water which can present a safety hazard. This is why it's important to follow any safety guidelines, including turning off all electricity to the area and wearing protective gear.

2. Use a Restoration Service

In the case of a large catastrophic loss, it may be best to have your client contact a professional restoration service. A company like SERVPRO is trained to deal with large-scale damage and a variety of restoration techniques. They also have the means to work with insurance companies to help with claim information. Common services offered include drying the area of any flood damage, document restoration, item restoration, mold remediation, and building repairs. SERVPRO even offers an electronic inventory system to help insurance companies keep track of claim data.

3. Protect the Building

When it comes to storm damage, it's important to protect the property against any further problems that may come from leaving any damaged areas exposed. Your chosen restoration team can board up or tarp over any potential problem areas. This will protect against further weather damage, animal intrusion, and may even be required by the insurance policy.

When dealing with catastrophic loss in Weston, FL, there are a few recommendations to consider following. There are many safety protocols designed to keep you, your clients, and any restoration experts that are working on the property safe. If a professional team has been hired to perform the restoration, they may already be familiar with these guidelines. It's also important to protect the property from any further damage. In the event there are any questions, restoration experts may be able to help.

3 Ways to Prepare Your Business for a Storm

2/13/2019 (Permalink)

Winter storm brings water into a local business in Weston, FL

3 Ways to Prepare Your Business for a Storm

A winter storm can cause a devastating amount of damage to your business in Weston, FL. However, there are steps you can take to protect your business before a storm occurs.

1. Fix Small Issues Quickly

When you know a storm is coming toward your business, you may not think that it’s important to take the time to look at minor issues that are affecting your business. However, strong winds and heavy rain can turn a small issue into a major problem; a leaky pipe can result in a pipe break, for example, which could result in major water damage. If you notice minor issues before a storm, it’s often best to have these issues fixed as soon as possible to ensure these little problems don’t create disasters.

2. Assess the Landscape

Structural damage is often an unfortunate result of a winter storm. However, taking a look at the environment around your business can be an essential step in preventing structural damage. If you notice any large limbs or debris on the ground, it’s best to remove these items prior to a storm. Additionally, you may need to trim or cut any limbs that hang close to or over your business to ensure they don’t fall and damage your building during the storm.

3. Protect Important Belongings and Documents

Recovering valuable and important items after a storm can be difficult, especially if you need access to documents or other items that have been damaged. In general, it’s wise to keep important documents and items in waterproof, fire-resistant containers. Additionally, it can be helpful to make copies of these documents, both online and on paper, just in case you aren’t able to recover them after a storm.

By fixing minor issues, assessing your landscape and ensuring important items are protected, you can decrease the likelihood of a winter storm causing major damage to your business. However, if your business has already sustained damage, you may want to consider contacting storm damage restoration professionals.

A Comprehensive Guide on How to Use a Fire Extinguisher

2/5/2019 (Permalink)

Learn the basics of how a fire extinguisher works

If you’ve gone your whole life thus far without knowing how to use a fire extinguisher, there’s no need to be too embarrassed! In fact, a majority of Americans claim they don’t know how to use one. Although an extinguisher is rather simple to use, you don’t want to waste time while a fire is quickly spreading in your home in Weston, FL. Here are the basics on how an extinguisher works, so you can act swiftly!

How to Use an Extinguisher

When grabbing an extinguisher, think “PASS.”

  • Pull the pin out of the handle
  • Aim the tip of the nozzle at the bottom of the fire
  • Squeeze the extinguisher’s trigger
  • Sweep the hose from one side to the other side until the fire is out

Once all these steps are completed, assess the fire damage and called fire restoration services if necessary.

When You Should Use a Fire Extinguisher

You will need to quickly assess the situation and make the decision to either attempt to put out the fire or run. Extinguishers can be used for small fires that just stared. For example, a kitchen fire that starts while you’re cooking can easily be put out before it spreads any further. However, a large fire requires you to evacuate the area and contact the fire department.

How To Know Your Extinguisher Is Fit for the Job

There are several different extinguishers designed for different types of fires. You will need to check the label of the fire extinguisher to see if it is a Class A, B, or C. This identifies whether it is designed to handle wood and paper product fires, liquid fires, or electrical fires. Some extinguishers are identified as A-B-C and can handle all three types of fires. Also, make sure it is pressurized and charged.

If a fire ever occurs, acting as fast as possible is key to minimizing fire damage to your home. Memorize the information in this guide for the best chance of putting a fire out before it’s too big for you to handle.

3 Steps in the Mold Remediation Process

1/25/2019 (Permalink)

Black mold in a Weston, FL home

Mold Cleanup Process

When you notice black mold in your home in Weston, FL, you may be concerned about the process of mold removal and remediation. There are several crucial steps to the mold cleanup process.

1. Containment

When mold is first noticed, mitigating the damage becomes a priority. To prevent mold from spreading and causing damage to other areas and items, mold is contained. An important part of the containment process involves assessing the environment and ensuring the environment is not conducive with mold growth. Moisture is eliminated as much as possible to prevent mold from continuing to grow, and locations that have been affected by mold in the home are dried as well.

2. Cleaning

Once black mold is contained, the process of cleaning will begin. However, since mold spores are difficult to clean and spores spread so easily, the process generally requires specialized equipment. Though there are treatments that help sanitize areas affected by mold, some items that are covered in mold may need to be removed rather than cleaned. In order to ensure the air quality is restored, the air within the affected location is also filtered through powerful air filtration devices.

3. Restoration

After mold has been contained and the affected area has been cleaned, the structures and items in your home will be restored. While structures in the home are often replaced, whether or not a specific item can be restored often depends on the material and the amount of damage the mold has caused. Items such as paintings or clothing can generally be sanitized and restored, though the process of restoring these items can be time-consuming and costly. 

When black mold occurs in a home, containing the mold, cleaning and sanitizing the area, and restoring and replacing structures and items within the home are important steps in the mold remediation process. Often, mold removal and remediation professionals can assist in restoring your home.

Water Damage and Your Business

1/18/2019 (Permalink)

Flooding and water damage are usually covered by two different policies

Water Damage and Your Business

Any prudent business owner in Weston, FL, will seek to minimize risks and mitigate damage wherever it occurs. If you find yourself with flooded business premises, take the following steps to begin the recovery proceedings.

1. Understand Your Coverage

Many commercial insurance plans will not cover environmental flood damage, such as the type from heavy rainfall or overflowing rivers, by default. By examining the particular climate risks for your area, you can better assess the potential for damage to your property and make an informed decision about which extensions and packages you may require to bolster your flood coverage.

2. Potential Applications

Once your business is covered, the safety net provided by a strong flood insurance policy is invaluable. Not only do these plans typically pay for the damage caused by high amounts of rainwater entry into the lower floors, they can also assist you in repairing various structural elements such as roofing and gutters that were dislocated or clogged by the rainfall. Depending on the policy and the circumstances of the damage to your flooded business, a pipe break may also be covered.

3. Other Considerations

Most insurers will also pay for a water damage restoration service after the sources of flooding are under control. These professionals can help restore drywall and flooring to its original condition, as well as dehumidify documents and electronics. Your insurer may require that you keep an up-to-date inventory of the affected items as the restoration process progresses in order to verify the costs involved. Note that most flood insurance policies will only begin to cover your business after a month has elapsed from the time of purchase, so it may be beneficial to select a policy quickly if you feel your place of business is at significant risk.

A flooded business can cause downtime and harm customer relationships. Prevent unnecessary damage and disruption by reviewing your flood insurance coverage options.

Do’s and Don’ts of Filing a Fire Claim

1/11/2019 (Permalink)

Fire damage in Weston, FL

Do’s and Don’ts of Filing a Fire Claim

Once the smoke has cleared and the flames are extinguished, one of the first things fire victims need to think about is a fire claim. But how do you go about ensuring that you get everything you’re owed? Some concerns may include the following:

  • Collecting benefits in a timely manner
  • Receiving reimbursement for all relevant damage
  • Wrapping up the claim quickly so building restoration can begin

There are many details to consider, but these simple do’s and don’ts can help you navigate the process following your Weston, FL, fire damage.

Don’t Clean Up

One of your first instincts following a fire may be to start picking up debris, but this isn’t the best idea. Cleaning up can remove proof of some damages and prevent you from collecting on your benefits.

Do Take Pictures

There’s bound to be much on your mind in the wake of a fire, and it’s easy to forget the smaller details. This is where a camera can come in handy. Go around the property documenting everything that the fire harmed, big or small. This can be especially useful to prove damages weren’t pre-existing.

Do Make a List of Property Loss

As soon as you’re able, make a list of things lost in the fire. No item is too small. It’s important to begin this right away, because it’s easy to forget all of the details in the weeks following a fire. Starting early ensures you’ll have a thorough list and a better chance at getting what’s due.

Don’t Wait to File a Fire Claim

Insurers often require policy holders to file as soon as possible, so don’t delay calling. Alerting the insurance company allows it to expedite the investigation process and can get you reimbursed sooner rather than later. This is especially true if nearby properties were also damaged and will also be filing claims.

Nobody ever wants to face a business fire. But when the unthinkable happens, it helps to know what to do. Use these tips to help you file your fire claim so you can focus on fire restoration and a return to business as usual.

How To Snake a Clogged Pipe

12/26/2018 (Permalink)

If you have a clogged toilet in your Weston, FL home contact a water damage cleanup and restoration company

An auger or snake can be used to clear clogged or stopped pipes. There are different snake designs for these purposes. In general, consumer-grade snakes are not as lengthy or powerful as professional augers. A homeowner should decide where to snake to clear out a blockage.

Pick an Access Point

There are several options for snaking out a drain. A homeowner can attempt to access a clog through a:

  • Toilet
  • Floor drain
  • Drain cleanout

It may be easier to access a clog near a toilet through the floor drain. Remove the toilet and run the snake directly into the drain. The drain cleanout is usually located in a basement or crawlspace. Remove the cap with a long pipe wrench, and look out for sewage overflow.

Insert the Snake

Push the snake into the drain until you encounter resistance. This should be the cause of the clogged drain. At this point, it is necessary to penetrate the clog by:

  • Hand-cranking
  • Using a power drill attachment
  • Breaking up or extracting the blockage

If you do not encounter resistance, the stoppage is located elsewhere. Contact a plumber to clear the line.

Test the Drainage

Try flushing a toilet and running a shower or sink to check for signs of overflow. If the pipe remains blocked, you may observe:

  • Water backing up in the sink or shower
  • The toilet overflowing while the shower is running
  • The toilet gurgling or sputtering
  • A sewer gas odor

A plumber can help to resolve the issue. In the meantime, try to limit sewer damage. Be aware that unequal pressure may result in a pipe break.
An auger or snake is more effective than a plunger. If a drain remains clogged after snaking, contact a plumber. If backups have caused sewer damage at a residence in Weston, FL, a homeowner should contact a water damage cleanup and restoration company.

Controlling Lint Buildup

12/26/2018 (Permalink)

Clean the lint filter of your dryer after every use

Incorporate the Following Safety Procedures Into Your Laundry Routine

Problems related to lint buildup represent the leading cause of dryer-related fires in the United States. Prevent a lint fire from affecting your home in Weston, FL, by incorporating the following safety procedures into your laundry routine.

1. The Lint Trap

Although it is easy to let it slip occasionally, the lint filter that sits between your dryer and the outlet hose should be cleaned after every use. Remove the cover by the handle and roll the layer of lint away from the screen, preferably over a garbage receptacle so as not to scatter dust particles into the air. Before replacing the screen, inspect the slot for any obvious masses of leftover lint that may have become dislodged. As hot air from the dryer passes through the trap, excess compacted lint can ignite, causing fire damage to the dryer and surrounding area.

2. The Hose

The aluminum hose connecting your appliance to the exit vent outside the home is another potential source of a dryer fire. Like the lint trap, dust and debris can build up in the hose and cause restrictions in the air flow, leading to increased heat retention. Remove the hose from the wall and the dryer by the screw-on clasps and clean it with a vacuum every few months. Inspect all connection points and ports for dust and residue that could lead to a lint fire.

3. Walls and Outlets

The duct leading from the laundry room wall to the outside may also need cleaning occasionally. Typically, this process requires a rotating brush attachment on a flexible coil, available at most hardware stores as an extension to a power drill. Clean the exit vent outside the home as well, including any attached grates.

A lint fire can be a source of costly property damage and require professional fire cleanup services. Keep your appliances in optimal working condition and prevent personal injury by clearing sources of flammable material accumulation.

4 Efficient Water-Saving Strategies Every Business Can Employ

12/26/2018 (Permalink)

Local office had a pipe leak in Weston, FL

Strategies to Help Conserve the Resource and Decrease their Utility Bill

Leaks and excessive consumption are two examples of potentially problematic water issues that can affect any business in Weston, FL. While it may be challenging to detect broken pipes and avert water damage, every business owner can employ several efficient strategies to help conserve the resource and decrease their utility bill.

1. Maintain Irrigation System

A commercial irrigation system can be an efficient means of maintaining a lush, appealing landscape. However, cracked components and misaligned heads can waste an abundance of water and increase your monthly bill. To help reduce this risk, you should inspect your irrigation system every spring, confirm it’s properly programmed and promptly address any defective or broken elements.

2. Upgrade Toilets and Urinals

Restrooms may be an optimal space to address water issues. Flushing toilets can utilize a significant amount of fluid. To help reduce usage, you can install water-free or 1-pint urinals and low-flow toilets. You can also reduce resource consumption by keeping existing commodes but upgrading to more efficient flush valves that utilize less liquid per flush.

3. Modify Sinks

A sink modification may be another beneficial water upgrade worth considering. You can implement a simple change by replacing aerators with enhanced versions that are designed to conserve more fluid.

Leaving a tap open longer than necessary also contributes to excessive consumption. To help eliminate this problem, you can install touch-free sinks that automatically shut off. Although they can be expensive, these innovative devices can be extremely efficient conservation tools.

4. Install Energy Efficient Appliances

Restaurants, hotels and many other businesses can also help resolve usage concerns by making selective appliance choices. Designed to use an efficient amount of fluid, Energy Star dishwashers and washing machines are an ideal option that can help save you money in the long run.

Water is a valuable resource, and excessive consumption can be both wasteful and expensive. Implementing simple upgrades and changes can help address your building’s water issues, facilitate enhanced conservation and ultimately save financial resources by reducing utility costs.

How Do Sprinklers Function During a Fire?

11/28/2018 (Permalink)

Fire sprinklers can keep a fire from spreading in your Weston,FL building

A fire sprinkler system can limit fire damage in a commercial property. This form of fire suppression equipment sprays water to minimize water damage. From detection to activation, learn how sprinklers function during a fire.

Heat Detection and Activation

Sprinklers are triggered by heat, as smoke can lead to more false alarms. In the event of a fire:

  • Heat rises and spreads
  • A glass bulb filled with glycerin shatters
  • The nearest sprinkler head activates
  • A valve opens and pressurized water sprays out

Sprinkler heads are connected to reliable water sources. The pressurized flow of water sustains an effective spray pattern for the purpose of dousing a fire.

Fire Damage Reduction

Sprinklers may reduce the risk to occupants and property by more than 65%. A fire sprinkler system can:

  • Keep a fire from spreading
  • Prevent a fire from reigniting
  • Limit water damage

Just one or two sprinklers can put out a fire. A standard commercial sprinkler system dispenses six times less water than a fire hose.

Maintain Sprinkler Function

It is a good idea to have the sprinkler system in a commercial property regularly inspected and tested, whether or not a fire has occurred. At least once a year, trained inspectors should:

  • Visually inspect sprinklers
  • Check pressure and water volume
  • Lubricate valves
  • Test the alarm system
  • Test flow and tamper switches

Property owners should also have a sprinkler system inspected whenever the occupancy, use patterns, or layout of a building undergoes a change. Any fluctuations of the water supply, such as a shortage or installation of a backflow prevention system, will necessitate a sprinkler system test.

Repair any fire sprinkler issues that an inspector discovers as soon as possible to prevent fires. If a fire results in damage to a commercial property or fire sprinkler cleanup is needed, the building owner should contact a mitigation and restoration company in Weston, FL.

Why Mold Smells Musty and Other Tidbits

11/28/2018 (Permalink)

Mold removal in Weston,FL

Understanding Mold Smells

If you’ve noticed a musty, mycotoxin caused odor in your Weston, FL, business, odds are that mold may be the cause. Fortunately, there are ways to take care of this problem and prevent it from occurring in the future. When seeking out possible mold there are a few things to understand.

1. What Mold Looks Like

Mold may not always look like the blotchy green growth many people automatically think of. It can also appear fuzzy or in a strand like texture. Similarly, mold can have various colors depending on its location and type. These colors may range from orange or brown, to white, green, grey, and even black.

2. Where the Musty Odor Comes From

As mold grows it releases a secondary metabolite known as a mycotoxin. This is what gives mold the musty scent many people associate with it. Many mold remediation professionals use filtration devices during the cleanup process to help clear the air and remove spores. These not only help get rid of the odor, but can prevent further contamination.

3. How to Prevent Mold Growth

One of the most important steps to remedy mold is prevention of future growth. Understanding the cause of the growth and controlling the moisture in the environment are two ways this can be done. Any leaks should be taken care of as soon as possible, as well as the steps necessary to reduce condensation or humidity in areas like restrooms, or around AC units and ventilation ducts. A mold professional may have additional recommendations for protecting your business.

Understanding that the musty smell can be mycotoxin caused may help you to locate the source and remedy the problem more quickly. It’s also important to know that mold may look different than what many expect. A mold remediation professional may also be able to help with cleanup, sanitation, and prevention of future mold issues.

Potential Damage to Solar Panels After a Storm

11/13/2018 (Permalink)

Hail can cause damage to your solar panel in Weston, FL

Elements That Can Cause A Panel Damage

If you have a solar panel on your roof in Weston, FL, you may be worried about the products getting damaged by a storm. There are a variety of elements that can cause panel damage, including the following:

  • High winds
  • Heavy rains
  • Flying debris

Many panels are designed to withstand bad weather. However, some strong storms may still cause damage to the most durable panels on the market.

Wind

High winds can rip solar panels off of your roof. Most panels are designed to withstand winds of up to 140 mph, but this can vary by state. In areas where tornadoes or hurricanes are common, panels may be made with a stronger material to ensure they do not get damaged except in the worst storms. In some cases, the winds may only affect small sections of the panels on your roof.

Water

Heavy rains can cause serious panel and roof damage. If the structure of your roof is weakened, the panels may fall through the deck. If this happens, you may need to hire a storm damage service to fix up the damage done to your roof. Most panels are designed to be watertight, but rain may still make its way into the panels themselves. The insurance policy on your panels may cover water damage.

Impact

Storms can also cause impact damage. This type of solar panel damage can be caused by flying debris or hail. Most panels have a glass surface that can be cracked by stones, branches or hail. However, it usually takes a strong impact to cause any damage because the panels are designed to withstand heavy blows.

Solar panels are a great resource for your house. Because they can be a big investment, they are designed to withstand the negative elements of a storm. If you notice any panel damage after a storm, you may need to assess what caused the damage to figure out how to fix the issue.

Fixing Your Leaky Toilet

10/30/2018 (Permalink)

Be sure you know who to call when you find a leaky pipe!

Suddenly discovering a puddle of water in the bathroom can be concerning. In most cases, the cause of a bathroom leak is the toilet. While a leaking toilet is a problem you’ll want to address as quickly as possible, it isn’t as daunting as it might seem. Here are steps you can take to stop the leak.

How to minimize the impact of water damage to your home.

Find the Leak

The first visible indication that your toilet has a leak is the presence of water on your bathroom floor. However, sometimes, you won’t see any water at all. That’s because leaking water can get trapped between your flooring and underlayment. If you suspect a leak, probe the floor for spots that feel soft or spongy. If the toilet is on an upper floor, water can leak down the flange and stain the ceiling below. You can’t miss the unmistakable odor of sewer gas when a toilet isn’t seated properly.

Tighten the Bolts

Once you’ve determined the toilet is the culprit, inspect its fit. Is it stable, or does it rock? If the anchor bolts on either side are loose, tighten them down. Alternate when tightening to ensure you don’t overdo it. Too tight, and you could break the flange.

Replace the Wax Ring

If the leak persists after tightening the bolts, you’ll have to replace the wax ring that sits between the toilet and the flange. Over time, this ring can dry out and break the seal, resulting in a leaking toilet. You’ll need to uninstall the unit, remove the old ring and install a replacement.

Beware of Hidden Damage

Hopefully, you’ve caught the leak early enough. If the toilet leak has exposed your subfloor and structural supports to water, however, there may be larger issues you need to consider. If there’s any question whether the leak has caused rot or damage, contact a restoration specialist in Weston, Florida who can assess the situation and suggest the proper repairs.

If you find you have a leaking toilet, address the issue as quickly as possible. If necessary, call in a professional for expert help.

Situations That Warrant Protection Against Flood Damage

10/30/2018 (Permalink)

Be sure you know the best way to protect your property in the event of a flood.

You take good care of your commercial property in Weston, Florida so that weather and other problems don't damage your building. You properly insulate your pipes and you make sure that gutters are clean and your roof is in good condition. Certain events, however, can flood your building despite even the best preparations. When these situations occur, you may need to have flood insurance to cover the cost of recovery.

Prolonged Storms

If a hurricane hits your area, it doesn't really matter whether your gutters are clean. The storm and the continual rainfall that probably follows may cause certain problems for your property:

  • Standing, contaminated water, especially on lower levels
  • Damaged equipment and furniture
  • Weakened walls, floors or ceilings

Your building may flood and sustain water damage when storms arise. If you have flood insurance, you have a way to pay for remediation services, even if the damage turns out to be extensive. 


Melted Snow

Some storms don't cause damage at the time they occur but rather after their effects start to dissipate. When heavy snows start to melt, the runoff has to go somewhere. If there is too much of it or if it melts too quickly, it can flood your building. Your commercial insurance portfolio should contain policies that take this possibility into account.

Busted Dams

Some disasters have little to do with the weather and more to do with the weakening of structures made by humans. Levees and dams are built to control the flow of water and keep it from overtaking an area. When such a structure breaks, the water it releases goes everywhere, including your commercial building. Documenting the event as well as the damage it causes can help your insurance adjuster determine how much your policy should cover.

If you live in an area that floods regularly, regional law may require you to have flood insurance. Even if you don't, however, it's a good idea to have extra coverage just in case you need it.

4 Steps to Preventing Water Damage in Your Home While on Vacation

10/30/2018 (Permalink)

How to prevent water damage while you are away from your home.

One of the worst ways to end your vacation is returning to your home in Weston, Florida and finding that it’s flooded due to a broken pipe. There are some precautions you can take to prevent unexpected water damage. If you are planning on being away from home more than a couple of days, it’s recommended you keep a checklist to follow, so you can avoid costly water pipe repair.

Clear Away Exterior Debris

It’s good practice to routinely check points around your home where leaves and other debris collect, such as gutters. Inspecting your home’s exterior before leaving will provide you with an added sense of security.

Keep Pipes and Spigots Insulated

If you live in a northern climate and plan to vacation during the winter months, one practical way to protect pipes is to cover them with an insulation sleeve. Covers are also available for spigots. Disconnect any hoses that aren’t in use, such as garden hoses.

Inspect Your Home for Leaks

Simply taking the time to inspect your home for leaks, or the potential thereof, could prevent water pipe repair down the road. The most obvious places to check are all sinks, toilets, and tubs. Look them over thoroughly for any signs of seepage, dripping, dampness, or rust. Don’t forget some of the less obvious places, such as the water heater.

Water can also leak in through broken window seals and the roof. While you’re surveying your home in Weston, Florida you might as well check for missing or broken shingles and weak areas. Your goal is to keep from returning to a flooded mess.

Shut the Water Off

Even if you’re planning on asking someone you trust to stop by and check on your home periodically, it’s recommended to turn off the main water line. Remembering to let all of the water drain from the faucets and toilet tanks will alleviate pressure buildup and help prevent the possibility of a broken pipe.

Taking a few simple precautions before you leave on vacation allows you to better relax and enjoy your time away. It also goes a long way toward preventing water pipe repair.

Combatting the Perils of Candles

10/24/2018 (Permalink)

Keep candles a safe distance away from paper materials in your Weston,FL home

Unattended candles are a common cause of house fires in Weston, FL. Most people do not realize how dangerous this household item can be. You can combat the potential perils by using candle alternatives, practicing fire-safe methods and knowing what to do in an emergency situation.

Alternatives

Rather than using a product you know can be dangerous, it is often better for you to turn to a flameless alternative. Common products that can replace these popular home pieces include the following:

  • Essential oil diffusers
  • Candle warmers
  • Air fresheners
  • Reed diffusers
  • String lights

Candles usually do two things for your home—provide lighting and a pleasant smell. Some of the alternatives can either add light to a room or improve the aroma. You may want to incorporate multiple alternatives to achieve the same effect as candles.

Fire-Safe Methods

Using candle alternatives isn't the only way you can combat the perils of this small open flame. You should also put fire-safe methods in place whenever you light a wick. This means keeping candles a safe distance away from paper materials and only lighting them on a level, hard surface. You should also always remain in the room while a candle is burning. If you think you might fall asleep, you should blow the flame out first.

Emergency Plans

If a candle fire does break out, you need to act quickly to remediate the situation. You should try to put out the fire if it is safe for you to do so. If the fire ravages a part of your home, you should call in a residential fire cleanup professional to help you get your house back to normal.

Because candles can provide a nice ambiance for a home, many homeowners choose to use them throughout the space. Finding good candle alternatives can reduce the chances of a fire breaking out. However, you need to remember to use fire-safe methods if you ever do use a traditional candle.

When Are Flood Cuts Necessary?

10/19/2018 (Permalink)

Flood cuts after a water damage in Weston,FL

Storm or water damage that results in flooding may necessitate a flood cut. This procedure involves cutting out drywall approximately one foot above the highest level of flood damage to assess the presence of moisture behind a wall. Here are several situations when this mitigation method may be necessary.

When Water Damage Occurs

Water damage involves one of three categories:

  • Category One water is clean. A Category One leak is typically caused by a broken supply pipe.
  • Category Two water or gray water contains chemicals or microbes. This water may come from a dishwasher, shower, or washing machine.
  • Category Three water or black water is highly contaminated. This water may contain sewage, solid waste, or toxigenic substances.

A flood cut will probably be necessary for damage involving contamination from Category Two or Category Three water. Category One leaks that make contact with walls without insulation should not require a flood cut and can be dried. Category One water may start to degrade if left standing for days.

After Flooding

Most flood water is Category Three, and necessitates a tear out of porous building materials such as drywall or insulation. If a commercial property is flooded with one foot of water, a mitigation expert will perform a flood cut at the two-foot level. Insulation exposed to any type of water cannot be safely dried, poses an increased mold risk, and will need to be removed and replaced.

If Mold Is an Issue

Contaminated water sources exacerbate the risk of mold growth. Mold can start to grow if water is left standing or excessive moisture persists for 24 to 72 hours. Mold tests may also require that experts make controlled cuts.

Flood cuts are usually necessary after a building is exposed to flooding. If water damage occurs at a commercial property in Weston,FL, contact a water and storm damage restoration service.

3 Actions To Avoid After a Flood Damages Your Home

10/10/2018 (Permalink)

Flood damage in a Weston,FL home

Dealing with a flood in your Weston, FL, home can be stressful and frustrating. Whether the water was caused by a broken pipe while you were away or floods from large storms, there can be much to consider in the aftermath. However, as you work toward recovery efforts, there are a few actions you might want to avoid that can cause more problems later on.

1. Touching Contaminated Water

Flood waters that enter your home from an overflowing creek or streams, a backed-up toilet or a sewer problem can contain a variety of contaminants. Human and animal feces, urine and harsh chemicals carried into your home by the force of the flood might all be present. Avoid touching the water with your bare hands and do not let family members or pets come into contact with it.

2. Retrieving Items on Your Own

Once water enters a home, it can affect many different systems, such as your HVAC and electrical controls. This can increase the risk of electrocution, so even if the water came from a broken pipe and appears to be clean, it is wise to wait for a flood damage and water removal company to come assess your home before you try to retrieve any items for restoration. Flooding experts have the experience to enter your home safely and can let you know when and if you and your family can return without the risk of injury.

3. Ignoring Posted Warnings

If you live in an area hit hard by a flood, then it is a good idea to be aware of city and state warnings and recommendations, especially if more floods are expected. Respecting evacuation notices, signs posted on flooded roads and other warnings can keep you and your family safe until the waters recede.

Flooding can come from many sources, from a broken pipe in the basement to seasonal storms. Knowing which actions to avoid and when to seek help can reduce damage to your Weston, FL, home and reduce the risk of injury.

Establishing Proper Containment During Mold Remediation After a Storm

9/14/2018 (Permalink)

It is important to contain the mold before trying to remediate it from your home.

There are many steps that mold remediation professionals take in your home in Weston,Florida to get rid of mold contamination.

One of the first things they do is to seal off the area.

Proper containment of the affected items and area is essential. It prevents the spread of mold into other sections of the home and thus keeps the problem from getting larger.

Item Isolation

All materials that are at risk of contamination must be separated from the home. For example, if the problem is in your children's bedroom, technicians will bag everything that is wet, moldy or musty:

  • Bedding
  • Stuffed animals
  • Toys
  • Clothing
  • Shoes
  • Books

Everything must be contained in plastic, sealed bags. If the items can be salvaged, they are cleaned and returned to the home once the whole remediation process is done. If they cannot be salvaged, the bags keep the mold contamination from spreading so you can dispose of them as you would dispose of regular trash.

Air Flow

Mold spores are airborne, so cutting off air flow in your home is vital to keeping a mold problem contained. Turn off the HVAC system and all fans. Close all doors and windows that allow air to circulate throughout your home. Try not to give the multiplying mold spores a free ride to a new destination.

Location Seal

Finally, the contaminated area must be sealed off. Specialist use sheets of polyethylene to line the area, sealing the seams with duct tape or some other industrial adhesive material. The only openings in this covering are the slits technicians use to get in and out of the area.

Mold contamination may seem like a pervasive issue that cannot be resolved, particularly if it is the result of a larger problem such as extensive water damage. Proper containment, however, helps you isolate the problem so that remediation experts can clean quickly without worrying about whether they are causing more harm than good.

How Do You Stop a Toilet That Won’t Stop Flushing?

9/14/2018 (Permalink)

Toilet overflow, or a leak can cause a great deal of damage. Be sure to call the professionals to restore your business after water damage.

Toilet overflow, or a toilet flood, can be a common occurrence in many large business operations. Due to the extensive use of restrooms in these types of facilities, toilet mechanisms can become worn relatively quickly. If you are dealing with a toilet that is continuously running or flushing, you may have a problem with the gasket.

To stop a toilet from constantly running, you may want to follow these four steps:

Shut off the Water Supply

The first thing you want to do is shut off the main water supply to the toilet that is causing the problem. Locate the slot for the flathead screwdriver on either the left or right side of the toilet and turn it to shut off the water.

Remove the Lid of the Flushing Mechanism

On top of the pipe running up the back of the toilet, there is a large bolt securing the lid of the flange and its components. You can loosen this slightly to remove the cover and expose the flange gasket.

Remove and Clean the Gasket and Weep Hole

You may notice that the gasket is covered in sediment along with the weep hole, and this is potentially causing your toilet overflow problem. Remove the gasket and clean it and the weep hole thoroughly before returning it to the toilet and testing the flow.

Replace the gasket

If cleaning the gasket did not resolve your issue, you may want to replace the gasket altogether. Replacing the gasket is a simple enough job; however, you may want to seek an experienced plumber in the Weston, Florida area if you have further issues.

Toilet overflow, while common, can be a nuisance to your business, especially when it hinders efficiency. The above steps may help resolve the most common problem in these instances; however, there may be times when it’s best to get a professional’s opinion.



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