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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Archived Blog Posts

Storm Damage Cleanup and Restoration

5/1/2019 (Permalink)

When disaster strikes, let SERVPRO of W. Vancouver / Clark Co. make it "Like it never even happened".

SERVPRO of W. Vancouver / Clark Co. has experience restoring homes affected by storms and flooding. We can respond immediately with highly trained technicians who employ specialized equipment and techniques to restore your home or business back to pre-storm condition.

Why Choose SERVPRO of W. Vancouver / Clark Co.?

We're Faster to Any Size Disaster

Floods and storms don’t wait for normal business hours, and neither do we. You can depend on an immediate response from our highly trained technicians, who are available 24 hours, seven days a week.

We're Highly Trained Storm Damage Specialists

As a leader in storm and water damage restoration, SERVPRO of W. Vancouver / Clark Co. has the specialized training and expertise to restore your home back to its pre-storm condition. Our restoration process puts an emphasis on scientific drying techniques, progress monitoring and documentation.

  • Water Damage Restoration Technician
  • Applied Structural Drying Technicians

We Have the Resources to Handle Storms and Disasters

Major storms and flooding events can overwhelm many restoration companies. On the other hand, SERVPRO of W. Vancouver / Clark Co. can access resources from 1,700 Franchises across the state and country and even utilize Disaster Recovery Teams for major storms and disasters.

Flooded? Don't Let Mold Take Hold

4/24/2019 (Permalink)

Acting quickly in any aerea that has flooded can prevent the opportunity of mold growth.

Steps To Act Quickly To Prevent Mold Growth After A Flood 

Storm flooding can occur in Pine Grove, WA, without much warning. It is crucial to act quickly to clean up flood water in order to prevent mold growth. Even small amounts of moisture can allow mold to grow, so it is important to get help from an experienced professional who will assess the extent of water damage, remove the water, and ensure that affected materials are completely dry.

1. Assessing the Damage

Water damage may be apparent, but moisture is often invisible. If you don't address excess moisture levels quickly following a flood, you risk needing mold removal down the line.
An experienced storm damage restoration specialist has the knowledge and equipment necessary to detect water levels in porous building materials where moisture can hide. He or she can restore your house to its pre-flood condition, whether that means drying or replacing the material.

2. Extracting the Water

Any area that has flooded can have water removal challenges. Specialized machinery may be needed to remove standing water and extract it from carpets, furniture, and walls. Such equipment may include submersible pumps and powerful wet/dry vacuums. These machines generally will be able to remove most, but not all, of the flood water from your home. At this point, there is still an opportunity for mold growth until moisture has been reduced to acceptable levels.

3. Eliminating the Moisture

To eliminate excess moisture, you'll need a professional to detect where it remains and equipment to dry it. Moisture detectors such as hygrometers and infrared cameras can find water in unexpected places, such as behind walls and underneath carpet. Dehumidifiers and industrial fans help extract moisture from materials and move it out of the building. Moisture levels should be rechecked until they have reached levels low enough to inhibit mold.

Act quickly to ensure that you prevent mold growth following a flood. An experienced professional can help you to assess the extent of water damage, extract the water, and ensure that all moisture has been properly dried.

Is Your Business Prepared For Potential Water Damage?

4/18/2019 (Permalink)

Contact you insurance company to know if you are covered.

Are You Adequately Protected For Potencial Water Damage?

Owning a business in Hazel Dell, WA, is a big responsibility. Safeguarding your building, equipment and inventory from water damage and other potentially costly perils may be a top priority. Although taking a proactive approach is often helpful, unforeseen situations can arise. For this reason, it’s important to possess business insurance and understand key provisions of your policy to ensure you are adequately protected.

1. Burst Pipes

Insulating exposed supply lines can prevent frozen and broken pipes during the winter. Most coverage does, however, usually include provisions to cover damage resulting from pipe bursts.

2. Water Leaks

Water leaks can also develop from aging infrastructure and equipment failures. Although it may be difficult to find compromised pipes hidden behind walls, performing routine maintenance on your building’s fire suppression and HVAC systems can help prevent some water damage. While every policy is different, most plans cover leaks and subsequent water cleanup requirements, offering some peace of mind.

3. Overflowing Toilets

While many companies encourage proper waste disposal, clogged and overflowing toilets are another common commercial problem. Because not all policies include sewage damage protection, you should carefully examine your plan. To avoid expensive out-of-pocket sewage cleanup costs, you may need to purchase supplemental coverage.

4. Storm Damage

A strong storm can damage your roof and break windows, allowing destructive water infiltration. Flooding can also occur. While storm damage may be covered, flooding is usually excluded from most business insurance plans. To protect your company’s financial security, you should discuss these topics with an insurance agent who can help you assess your risk and purchase flood insurance.

Water damage can result from a variety of scenarios, some of which may not be covered under many business insurance policies. Because water cleanup and restoration costs can be costly, inadequate coverage can result in significant financial losses. For this reason, it’s crucial for every business owner to analyze their situation and prepare for potentially destructive events.

3 Steps To Remove Mold From Air Ducts

4/12/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO can inspect, assess and remediate mold infestation.

Steps Mold Remediation Specialist Take To Remove Mold Growth From Air Ducts

Your commercial property in Vancouver, WA has many places where black mold may hide. All areas that are prone to excess moisture can foster fungus growth. If you believe the problem resides in your HVAC system, there are several steps that mold remediation specialists take to remove the growth and keep it from coming back.

1. Identify Mold Problem

The first thing technicians do is test to confirm that there is mold in your air ducts. There are several signs that this may be the case:

  • Fuzzy or slimy patches on insulation
  • Black powder on wall outside air vents
  • Strong, musty odor

Professional testing gives technicians a lot of information to work with. They know not only the extent of the problem but also the kind of mold they're dealing with. Once they identify the black mold, they can choose better techniques to mitigate it.

2. Clean Ductwork

The main goal of remediation is to leave you with clean ducts throughout your building. Technicians may seal off the system while the cleanup is in progress. This keeps an intense concentration of mold spores from spreading throughout your building and growing elsewhere. After the mold growth is removed, more tests can be run to confirm that the problem is resolved.

3. Resolve Source of Problem

No matter how quickly or thoroughly your remediation specialists remove the mold growth, if you do not take care of the problem that led to it, it is likely to return. Make sure all leaks are fixed. You may need to re-caulk your tile floors or reduce the humidity in your building. Preventing further water damage can also prevent future mold damage.

When you see signs of black mold, you probably need to do more than just wipe it away with a wet cloth. Certified professionals are trained to get rid of the growth and keep it from returning.

Benefits of Calling a 24-Hour Response Team for Your Cleanup Emergency

3/24/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of W. Vancouver/Clark Co. we are available 24 hours a day.

Dealing with the aftermath of a fire, flood, or mold in your office building isn’t something you want to think about, but when you work with a reliable 24-hour emergency cleanup team, you’re grateful for that wonderful resource. The best disaster relief teams can help piece your business operations back together and make things safe for you to return to work.

What Does a Round-the-Clock Restoration Company Do for You?

If you experience the ordeal of a disaster in your LA Center, WA, office, there are plenty of options you can consider for help. Not all of these provide 24-hour response and care. Those companies that do can offer you the following benefits:

  • Open seven days a week, even on holidays
  • Will call you back within one hour of your first contact
  • Will be onsite within four hours of your call
  • Will talk to you directly about their findings and plans moving forward

Can Always Reach Them

Natural disasters or issues with plumbing, sewage, or wiring can occur at any time, so you need a disaster response and recovery team you can count on whenever the need arises. When a cleanup and restoration team is always open, you can have peace of mind that your emergency situation won’t get worse or develop further problems due to delays.

On the Job Fast

You can’t afford anything but a fast response in these urgent cases. You have a business to run and must ensure the safety of your employees and the vitality of your company. Within the day of your call, a qualified team of professionals will inspect the damage at your office and will start to formulate a plan of attack.

Because flooding and fire emergencies can happen at any time, you need 24-hour care from a disaster response crew. The best companies in the area have what it takes to get on the scene quickly.

Three Situations When Mold Growth is Covered by Insurance

3/14/2019 (Permalink)

Fungus in crawl space in a Sara,WA home

Ocassions When You Can Expect Your Insurance to Pay for Mold Damage 

If you have discovered a fungus growth in your Sara, WA home, you might be wondering whether your homeowner’s insurance will cover this type of damage. The answer is sometimes. While mold is generally not covered under this kind of policy, there are exceptions. Here are a few occasions when you can expect your insurance to pay for mold damages.

1. When It Is Caused By a Covered Peril
Mold coverage often depends on the source of the growth. Damage caused by something that your insurance already covers will likely be included. Incidents such as broken pipes caused by freezing, overflow related to appliances or plumbing and water damage caused by snow, sleet or ice will usually be covered. If the water damage is caused by a flood, however, this will generally not be covered unless you have a flood policy.

2. When It is Sudden and Accidental
While your insurance policy may cover mold in some cases, this only applies if the damage was not caused by negligence on your part. If a pipe breaks because it was not properly maintained or if you fail to notice the damage until quite a bit of time has passed, then the insurance company may determine that the fungus growth is a result of improper home maintenance and they will refuse to cover it.

3. When You Have a Separate Mold Policy
In some cases, you may be able to have separate mold insurance added to your policy for an additional cost. Some companies might limit the amount of mold damage you can claim or the services that are included, but this is better than no coverage at all.

If you are concerned about a fungus growth in your home, it is a good idea to hire a professional mold remediation service. In some cases, the cost will be covered by your insurance. Always be sure to regularly maintain your home and check for damages to prevent the coverage from being denied by your insurer.

A Non-Plumber's Guide to Assessing a Leaky Toilet

3/14/2019 (Permalink)

Leaking toilet in a Ridgefield, WA home

Assessing a Leaky Toilet 

Household repairs can be overwhelming for anyone, and leaks can be downright frightening if you’re not handy. It’s understandable if you don’t want to deal with a leaking toilet. However, if you’re noticing water on the floor every time you flush, it’s probably time for an assessment.

The good news is you don’t have to be an expert to make some initial determinations. Here are some easy steps that anyone in Ridgefield, WA, can use to evaluate a bathroom leak.

1. Observe the Leak

A good first step is to determine where the leak is coming from. You’ll want to study whether the seepage happens after flushing, if water is coming out from the floor, or if it’s a drip coming from a cracked bowl.

2. Make Sure the Tee Bolts Are Tight

You may not have known what they were called, but you’ve definitely seen tee bolts. Tee bolts are located on both sides of your toilet’s base and they’re covered with simple plastic caps, which can be easily removed. Use a standard wrench to gently tighten the bolts, but don’t over tighten as that can crack the pedestal and worsen your leaking toilet situation.

3. Replace the Wax Ring

If your toilet continues to leak after the tee bolts are tightened, you might need to replace the dry wax ring on the underside of the toilet. You will need to remove the toilet completely to do this, so if you’re not skilled in repairs you may want to call a professional.

4. Check the Tank Flange

The tank flange is simply a connector that attaches the water pipe to the toilet tank, and these can break. If you’ve determined you have a leak, tightened the tee bolts, and replaced the wax ring and still have a leak, you may need a new tank flange.

If you still have a leaking toilet after conducting these easy assessments, it’s possible that your toilet wasn’t installed properly, and you should contact a professional to re-install your toilet as soon as possible. However, you don’t need to be an expert to determine what kind of bathroom leak you have.

Why Should Insurance Agents Use a Claims Inventory System

2/18/2019 (Permalink)

4 Reasons Why Agents and Adjusters Rely on Inventory Systems

Insurers prefer to work with helpful and reliable mitigation and restoration services. SERVPRO provides access to estimates and data through a Claims Information Center and is a leading company in many vendor networks. Here are four reasons agents and adjusters rely on inventory systems when processing an insurance claim related to damage at a residence in Cherry Grove, WA.

1. Tracking Estimates

An inventory system makes it possible to view an estimate as soon as it has been uploaded by a franchise. This system can also be useful for monitoring the progress of a job. This is particularly the case if adjustments are necessary once cleanup or restoration is underway.

2. Accessing Data

These systems also make it easier for an insurance agent to determine whether an estimate is in line with regional and national averages. The Claims Information Center allows users to compare causes of loss, job file costs, types of claims and company and franchise performance. All of this information may facilitate the settlement of an insurance claim.

3. Communicating Efficiently

A claims inventory system also makes it easy for insurers to see information uploaded by a mitigation and restoration franchise. Estimates and other relevant files are submitted to an internal system and made available on the Information Center for authorized access at any time.

4. Streamlining Claims

The availability of information on individual claims and aggregated data can make it easier settle a claim. The Information Center offers all of this information, and SERVPRO also maintains a franchise Participation Agreement to increase the likelihood of coverage.

An agent or adjuster can use an inventory system to track and research claims. A service such as the Claims Information Center makes it easy to compare types of damage and restoration jobs. Insurers can access an individual insurance claim and data on national, regional, area or local damage in Cherry Grove, WA.

What to Know About Restoration and Your Company

2/14/2019 (Permalink)

Storm damage in Sara, WA

When your company in Sara, WA, experiences flooding and contamination by black water, your staff may wonder if it's safe to come to work during the restoration process. Many restoration experts recommend staying away from the building during certain steps in the process, however, staff may be able to return to work sooner than expected.

The Business Building May Need to Stay Closed for Some Steps

Many damage and restoration professionals recommend either closing or moving business off-site while certain repairs are underway. These restoration steps may include

  • Water removal
  • Decontamination of the affected area
  • Necessary demolition or cutaway work
  • Mold remediation efforts

Some Tasks Can Be Performed from Alternate Locations

While the company building is cleansed of black water and then decontaminated, some parts of your business may be able to continue from an alternate location. If your business’s electronic files are backed up onto a server, then your IT company may be able to set you up on an alternate computer. Phone calls may be able to transfer to a different line, and some employees may be able to work from home.

When it May Be Safe to Return

After the flood cleanup, staff may be allowed to return to parts of the building that are not under construction. Air filtration devices may still be in use to improve air quality while restoration efforts are underway. There may also be some areas of the building that are inaccessible until repairs are complete. However, with the permission of the restoration company, employees can get back to work.

During a black water cleanup at a place of business, it's important to remember that because of certain steps in the restoration process the building may need to remain closed for repair. Fortunately, the company may be able to perform some tasks off site. After any damaged material and water has been removed, staff may be allowed to return to the building and resume work.

3 Things You May Need To Throw Away After a Home Fire

2/5/2019 (Permalink)

Fire in a Salmon Creek, WA home

Items that Need to Be Thrown Out After a Fire

When a fire occurs in your home in  Salmon Creek, WA, the process of cleaning up can be daunting. Often, people are unsure of what to throw away. There are several types of items that are often damaged in fires, and they commonly need to be thrown out.

1. Cosmetics

Cosmetics, even if they are packaged, generally need to be stored in clean, cool environments to remain in good condition. Unfortunately, high heat from a fire can cause the packaging of many items, and the items themselves, to melt. As a result, smoke and soot can easily damage the cosmetics, making them unsafe to use.

2. Food

After a fire, it’s often best to throw away the majority of food items in your home. Though some items may be visibly damaged, especially if the fire occurred in the kitchen, some pieces of food may appear to be unharmed. However, even if items are canned or wrapped up, smoke and soot can still affect the quality of food, and consuming food that has been harmed by soot or smoke damage can be hazardous. If you’re unsure whether or not food has been harmed, it’s generally best to discard the item.

3. Medication

Many medications need to be stored in relatively cool environments, and some medications may need to be stored in a refrigerator. During a fire, the temperature in a house can quickly rise. The high heat from a fire can damage the overall quality of the medication, which can ultimately make the medication ineffective and unsafe to consume. If you can document the medications that need to be replaced, you may be able to receive compensation from your insurance company.

Knowing that you may need to throw away cosmetics, food, and medication after a fire can help make the process of sorting through your belongings easier. Often, homeowners whose homes have sustained damage from fires find it useful to work with fire damage restoration experts.

The Pros and Cons of HEPA Filters for Air Purification

1/25/2019 (Permalink)

HEPA filters are rated to remove 99.9% of particles 0.3 microns in size from the air that passes through

By now, you’ve likely heard of the benefits of using air filtration in your home located in Felida, WA, to rid of mold that has made its way into the air you breathe. Many people choose to use air purifiers that are equipped with HEPA (High Efficiency Particulate Air) filters to rid of mold spores floating around. While these filters are often very efficient at completing this purpose, they can become problematic if not cared for correctly.

Applications of HEPA Filters

HEPA filters are used in several different settings including:

  • Home purifiers
  • Vacuum cleaners
  • Hospitals
  • Airplanes
  • Tesla Model X

How a HEPA Filter Works

An air purifier with a HEPA filter cleans the air of mold by catching particles that are in your home. These filters are effective 99.97 percent of the time since they can only catch particles that are 0.3 microbes are larger. However, a large majority of spores are between 1 to 30 microbes in size, so only unusually small particles are able to get by undetected.

The Cons of a HEPA Filter

While a HEPA filter is considered to be an effective means of air filtration, there are a couple of cons to consider:

  • When not cleaned regularly, mold can grow on your HEPA filter and be emitted into the air
  • Unlike some other types of filters that are able to kill mold, HEPA filters only trap them.
  • A HEPA filter cannot trap very small mold spores.

When a HEPA Filter Isn’t Enough

It is important to remember that an air purifier only removes mold spores from the air inside your home and does not tackle mold growth problems within your home. To address a serious mold issue, you will need to contact a mold restoration specialist.

No one wants to have mold spores floating around in their home, which is why air filtration is so beneficial. HEPA filters are especially effective at purifying your air. Just make sure you replace them regularly to avoid unnecessary mold growth!

What Do You Need To File a Water Damage Claim?

1/18/2019 (Permalink)

Water loss in a bathroom in Hazel Dell, WA

Documentation is required to file a homeowners insurance claim for water damage. A policyholder should provide photos, videos, maintenance records, and proof of purchase to an insurer as evidence of damage caused by a pipe burst or any type of leak. Learn more about what information a homeowner should gather as he or she prepares to file a claim for water damage.

Proof of Damage

Insurers will want to see proof of the full extent of the damage. There are several types of useful documentation:

  • Photographs
  • Video
  • Footage dated prior to an incident

These records indicate that damage was caused by the incident that led a homeowner to file an insurance claim. It is important to document damage before taking any steps toward mitigation. Homeowners may also benefit from being able to produce maintenance records indicating that the incident was not due to negligence. Even if an insurer does not cover the cause of damage, coverage should be available for the effects.

Proof of Purchase

It can also be helpful to gather receipts or other proof of purchase for damaged contents. Check your policy to ensure that the replacement cost of items is covered rather than the actual cash value. Given depreciation, the latter may not be sufficient to replace items with severe damage.

A Restoration Estimate

Insurers prefer to work with an established water damage mitigation and restoration company. Obtain an estimate for the cleanup and restoration processes by contacting a company that provides both services. This calculation may be more accurate and complete than estimates from more than one business.

All of this information can help a homeowner filing an insurance claim for water damage. Be aware that homeowners insurance does not cover any damage caused by flooding. A separate flood insurance policy is necessary for damage resulting from heavy rains or rising bodies of water in Hazel Dell, WA.

Answers to Basic Questions About Interruption Insurance

1/11/2019 (Permalink)

Flooded room in a Vancouver, WA office

Even if you've taken all the appropriate steps, your Vancouver, WA, business could still be affected by fire. When this happens, one of the most worrying aspects of the situation is how much money you could lose because of business interruption. Fire isn't the only emergency that could put your business in danger; other financial perils could include extreme weather, hail, windstorms, tornadoes, flooding, and other circumstances that may temporarily close your business. Protect your business with interruption insurance.

What Is Included in the Coverage?

Standard property insurance covers a lot of the physical damages and losses that fire leaves behind, but it doesn't cover everything. There are three main things that business interruption policies cover that your property insurance probably won't.

  • Profits you would have earned during the time period
  • Operating expenses you're still obligated to pay, such as rent
  • Moving costs to your temporary location

Sometimes this type of insurance is called business income insurance.

Who Qualifies for Coverage?

Sadly, there are business owners who don't qualify for this protection. One of the primary qualifications for this type of insurance is a dedicated commercial location. If you run a small business out of your home, you probably won't qualify for the policy. However, you may be able to get a business owner's policy. Other aspects of your business that may affect your eligibility include the type of industry, your history of business interruption claims, and the location.

How Long Does the Interruption Coverage Last?

Fortunately for many business owners, interruption insurance is available for the entire period of restoration. This is defined as the length of time necessary for repairing, rebuilding, and replacing any of your property that is damaged or destroyed. It's a good idea to find out exactly what is covered before you talk to the fire restoration professionals.

As you put safety procedures in place and provide training for your employees, don't forget to research interruption insurance in Vancouver, WA. You'll want the peace of mind that comes from knowing your business won't fail when disaster strikes.

Preventative Maintenance Strategies for Commercial Plumbing

12/31/2018 (Permalink)

No one likes having to deal with plumbing problems. They can cause significant damage to your commercial property that can only be fixed by water remediation experts. When you bring in the experts before the problem starts, however, you can prevent most of the common issues property owners in Felida, WA, tend to have. Being proactive can save you a lot of money and a lot of headaches in the long run.

Keeping a Watchful Eye

Some problems cannot be avoided. For example, if there is a water main break, your building will likely sustain some damage no matter how vigilant you are. Most plumbing issues, however, are easily prevented by recognizing and dealing with them as soon as you discover that something is wrong. A few key things to look out for include:

• Signs of leaks, such as bowed walls, standing water or water marks on the ceiling
• Clogged drains, as evidenced by overflow and slow draining sinks
• Low water pressure readings when you test with a pressure gauge

If you notice the signs of potential plumbing problems, contact someone to further assess and fix them immediately. The sooner a problem is fixed, the less damage it will do.

Have Your Plumbing Inspected

Regular inspections are vital for keeping your plumbing system working properly. Certified professionals can find the broken pipe or root invasion that is causing the problem in your building. With frequent inspections, they may even find it before it causes any damage that you would be able to see. Prevention trumps solution every time.

Taking care of a commercial plumbing system is a big responsibility, but preventing plumbing problems are well worth the effort. Have your plumbing professionally inspected before fall and after winter. It’s also a good idea to perform monthly inspections yourself. By being proactive, you can save yourself a lot of time and money.

No, Your Leaky Toilet Is Not Normal

12/24/2018 (Permalink)

Air mover on a water loss in a Vancouver,WA bathroom

To get the most out of your Vancouver, WA, home, you need a functional, attractive and comfortable bathroom. Few things can ruin its condition faster than a leaking toilet. If your commode leaks every time you flush, you may have a bigger problem than you think.

Water Leaks Cause Significant Damage

A bathroom leak is not something you can take lightly. In fact, even a small leak can cause serious damage. If you have a leaky toilet, you may find damage to the following:

  • Toilet
  • Tile
  • Carpeting
  • Subfloor
  • Baseboard

Toilet Leaks Are Common

Leaky toilets are a common occurrence. Generally, assigning blame for a leaking toilet is not difficult. In many cases, a dry wax ring is the culprit. To seal properly, rings must remain moist and pliable. As the ring ages, cracks and brittleness can encourage a leak to form. On the other hand, improper installation may be the reason your toilet leaks. Either way, you should not ignore the problem.

Leaks Often Require Remediation

When you have a leak in your bathroom, you must take certain steps to deal with it. While repairing the toilet may stop the leak, it is still possible that you have serious secondary damage. Specifically, you may need to remove and replace damaged fixtures, flooring and other items. You may also need to address mold and mildew growth. Since containing mold requires specific equipment, knowledge and skill, it’s often a good idea to leave the job to a reputable mold remediation service.

If your commode leaks when flushing, you may think a leaking toilet is normal. It isn’t. Your toilet should not spill water onto the floor, but a leak can also cause significant damage. By understanding the typical causes of toilet leaks and knowing how to prevent them, you can keep your bathroom in tip-top shape.

Best Ways To Remove Smoke Odor From Your Home

12/24/2018 (Permalink)

If you have smoke damage in your Hazel Dell, WA home get in contact with a professional cleaning company

A lot can go wrong if a fire starts in your Hazel Dell, WA, home. At the very least, you will deal with inconvenience and hassle. No matter how large or small the fire may be, you’ll probably encounter the need for smoke cleaning. The nasty odor smoke leaves behind can overwhelm anyone and make it difficult to remain in your house. Fortunately, there are some effective methods the professionals use that can help get rid of this nuisance.

Whom Should You Call?

Cleaning up after smoke damage isn’t an ordeal you should tackle alone. There are some outstanding professional cleanup companies that boast the expertise to get your home back in shape. Here are some reasons why trained professionals are your best source of help:

  • They have years of experience cleaning up after residential fires.
  • They have the right equipment and techniques to thoroughly remove traces of smoke.
  • They work quickly and efficiently.
  • They have excellent customer service.

Air Filtration Devices

One of the most common ways a professional will help restore your home and rid it of smoke odor is by using air filtration devices. An experienced company will use heavy-duty equipment to remove toxins and other harmful materials from the air in your home. This will give you peace of mind that you can once again breathe clean air and not worry about illness or other health concerns.

Ozone Machines

In small doses, ozone is effective in removing the particles in smoke that cause odor. Only a professional should administer this form of smoke cleaning, as it can be toxic in large amounts. Ozone breaks down the bacteria and other materials so they will no longer smell.

Thermal Foggers

Another way to eliminate unappealing smoke odor is through a thermal fogger. This method is best used in conjunction with other steps such as the use of baking soda. The fogger takes in a deodorizing solution and then blows it out into the affected area.

When you need deep smoke cleaning, get in touch with the pros. A reliable technician will use these steps to help remove terrible odors from your house.

The Right Personal Protective Equipment for Mold

11/28/2018 (Permalink)

Personal protective equipment keeps mold remediation specialists safe as they eradicate mold growth. There are several types of equipment that are commonly used to protect the respiratory system and skin from mold while preventing cross-contamination.


Mold calls for the use of a respirator with a rating of N95 or better, particularly if the fungus is toxigenic. Several degrees of respirators are available:

  • Basic respirators for non-chemical substances
  • Premium respirators for cleaning chemicals
  • Half-face or full-face respirators for severe mold

Respirators may be reused if professionals carefully clean this equipment after each work session. Filtration cartridges should be replaced every day.


Tyvec coveralls protect clothing and skin from exposure to mold. Several features distinguish this protective equipment:

  • Full-body design
  • Attached hood and booties
  • Non-porous material

Not every infestation requires the use of coveralls. This protective suit is desirable when dealing with toxigenic mold growth or working in areas with poor ventilation. Workers may also wear long sleeves and pants to protect their arms and legs. Porous clothing should be bagged and discarded at the end of each cleaning sessions. Do not attempt to clean and reuse clothing contaminated with mold. Workers that do not wear full-body coveralls may want to put on shoe covers to avoid spreading spores to unaffected areas of a structure.


Gloves are another critical piece of protective equipment. Experts recommend the use of gloves made out of:

  • Latex
  • Nitrile
  • Rubber

Gloves should be thick enough to resist tearing. It is important to dispose of gloves after each work session.

In addition to all of these types of personal equipment, mold remediation professionals may also use containment methods such as plastic sheeting or creating a negative air chamber to prevent cross-contamination. Even though non-professionals can put on personal protective equipment and attempt to remove mold from a commercial building in Salmon Creek,WA, remediation professionals will get the job done quickly and safely.

How To Manage Smoke Odor After a Fire

11/21/2018 (Permalink)

Clean up after a smoke damage in a Hazel Dell,WA home

Managing damage after a fire can be a daunting experience for any business owner in Hazel Dell, WA. Depending on the nature of the fire, water, soot and smoke destruction may all be present. Because miniscule smoke particles can scatter throughout your office, smoke cleaning can be particularly challenging. Fortunately, there are several techniques you can employ to combat the noxious odor.

Contributing Factors

Numerous factors may contribute to the amount of smoke odor present in your office space:

  • Magnitude of the inferno
  • Extent of fire damage
  • Amount of time blaze burned
  • Size of the affected area

Regardless of the scope of damage, ridding your building of the unpleasant smoky aroma often requires significant cleanup efforts.

Circulate Air

Circulating fresh air may help alleviate smoke odor intensity. If possible, open windows and use large fans to push smoke-scented air out of your building.

Clean Affected Area

Ridding the affected area of soot residue can also help eliminate smoke damage. You should use a dry sponge, water and mild detergent or a commercial cleaning agent to thoroughly clean walls and other hard surfaces. You should also steam clean or apply deodorizing cleaning products to carpets and upholstered furniture.

Use Odor Absorbing Substances

To further aid smoke cleaning efforts, you can also place activated charcoal or baking soda around your office space. Both products are odor-absorbing substances that may be particularly useful in small spaces.

Clean HVAC Ducts

Smoke particles and soot residue can also infiltrate your building’s HVAC ducts and filters. As part of your fire cleanup efforts, you should change your HVAC filters and complete a thorough air duct cleaning.

A Manageable Problem

Smoke damage is one form of destruction that your business may face after a fire. Although smoke odor may linger after the blaze is extinguished, you can alleviate the problem by completing a thorough soot and smoke cleaning.

The Basics of Sump Pump Maintenance

11/13/2018 (Permalink)

Sump pump maintenance can prevent flooding in a basement or crawlspace in your Salmon Creek, WA home

Sump pumps can prevent water from flooding the basement or crawlspace of a home in Salmon Creek, WA. These pumps must be regularly cleaned and maintained in order to function properly. Learn the basic principles of keeping the sump pump in your home working and ways to ensure that it will operate in an emergency situation without electricity.

Keep the Pump Clean and Functional

Dirt, gravel, and other types of debris may cause blockages that force a pump to work harder to do the same amount of work. Pump maintenance involves regularly cleaning out the

  • Bottom grate
  • Discharge pipe
  • Intake screen
  • Pit
  • Vent hole

You should also check the operation of the float mechanism. Buildup or malfunctions may result in damage to the pump or an eventual overflow.

Check Power Sources and Alarms

A sump pump should plug into a ground fault circuit interrupter or GFCI outlet. Make sure that

  • The outlet is functional
  • The power cord is in good condition
  • The backup battery is replaced every two to three years

Some pumps have battery-powered water level alarms. If your model features emergency notifications, you should

  • Turn on alerts
  • Know what alerts mean
  • Be able to receive alerts

Newer models may send alerts to a cell phone so that you will receive water level warnings no matter where you are.

Consider Backup Solutions

If the pump in your home does not have a back-up battery, you can rely on an alternative power source such as a

  • Car battery
  • Deep cycle boat battery
  • Generator

You may also want to consider a back-up water-powered pump that is capable of working without a power source.

Cleaning and maintaining a sump pump can prevent flooding in a basement or crawlspace of your home in Salmon Creek, WA. If a pump and backups fail and water levels start to rise, rely on a residential damage mitigation service.

3 Major Causes of Home Fires: Are You at Risk?

10/24/2018 (Permalink)

Electrical fire in Felida,WA

As a Felida,WA, homeowner, you probably count fire prevention as a high priority when it comes to protecting your family and property. Teaching your children fire safety habits, avoiding clutter and storing flammable materials properly can all lower the risk of a home fire. However, since fires often stem from a variety of causes, understanding a few of the most common origins can help you bolster your current fire prevention efforts.

1. Cooking Mishaps

Cooking fires are common and caused almost 50 percent of house fires between 2011 and 2015, according to the National Fire Prevention Association. Grease fires and malfunctioning kitchen equipment can start a home fire, so it is important to know how to put out them out quickly. Snuff grease fires with baking soda or salt and replace worn appliances that spark or break down often.

2. Heat Sources

Candles, electric heaters and warming blankets can all cause fire and injury if they are not used correctly. Space heaters can fall over onto fabrics or spark a fire if they are placed too close to books or other clutter. Check electric blanket cords often for fraying or exposed wires and unplug them when you leave a room.

3. Outdated or Malfunctioning Electrical Outlets

If your home has old electrical outlets that are loose or discolored, they might malfunction or spark unexpectedly and when it comes to fire causes, this can be a major culprit. A fire cleaning and restoration service can help you gauge whether your outlets need to be replaced and which other fire risks might be present in your home.

Preventing a home fire at your Felida,WA, residence can help you protect your family and all you hold dear. Knowing the risks and which might be present in your home could make your prevention tactics even more effective for today and in the future.

Does A Business Need Flood Insurance?

10/19/2018 (Permalink)

Air movers on a flood damage due to storm in a commercial facility in Hazel Dell,WA

Flood insurance is a useful tool to combat the risk of natural disasters, but many business owners do not understand the requirements and basics of these potentially valuable policies. Keep reading for clarification and consideration.

1. Is Insurance Necessary?

While commercial insurance is likely mandatory, coverage for flooding may only be required in some regions of the country. However, just because it is not required does not mean it is not necessary. Only you can be the judge of the necessity of this type of insurance. If your business is located in a low-lying area or an area prone to even small floods, it may be a nice addition to your policy.

2. Does Insurance Protect Against Losses?

Flood insurance may protect against losses caused by flooding. However, there may be specific requirements for that coverage to kick in. For instance, your flood policy may make a stipulation that the flooding is caused by a natural disaster, like the overflowing of lakes, rivers or streams. Some plans may require an overflow to be a certain size before being labeled a flood. For example, many policies agree that water must cover a minimum of 2 acres or affect a minimum of 2 properties before being defined as a flood.

3. Does Insurance Cover Landscaping and Exterior Property Damage?

No, most flood policies do not cover damage done to the exterior of a property, including landscaping and septic systems. Additionally, business interruptions will likely not be covered by this type of policy. There are policies for business interruption as well as additional endorsements that can expand coverage to things like vehicles.

4. Does Insurance Cover Restoration?

Yes, if you have flood coverage, most policies will cover the costs of business restoration. While each policy is different, most will require that you receive a minimum of 3 estimates from restoration companies in the Hazel Dell,WA, area.

While every municipality does not necessarily mandate flood insurance, it may be beneficial for business owners. Ensuring that your property is protected against every potential risk is a way to preserve and maintain operations. Right, not every business needs flood protection, but it may be worth considering.

Prevent Water Damage by Caring for Key Home Systems

10/8/2018 (Permalink)

Home water leak in Grove,WA

When you get water in home building materials, the damage is unavoidable and costly. Most materials swell or breakdown, and mold can become a secondary problem if water is not dried thoroughly. While water damage is a common problem that many homeowners experience, most of it is preventable. Here are some key systems, in and out of your home, to check right now to reduce your chance of water damage:

Pipes and Plumbing.

Inspect pipes, hoses and connections in your search for drips and leaks since even the tiniest of these can develop into a significant pipe cleanup job. Sometimes you may not see leaking water, so you need to look for clues: rust, mold, stains, and damaged materials that peel or buckle.

Roof and Water Drainage

Check inside your attic and look for stains in the ceiling for signs of rain water in the home already. Check outside, during or after rain, to make sure gutters and downspouts flow freely. If you see areas that pool around your foundation, consider lengthening the end of your downspouts, adding French drains or grading the land away from your house.

Basement Pump System

Whether you have a storm or a broken pipe, the first line of defense in the basement is the sump pump. Clear debris from the pump so that it is ready for action. Periodically check your sump pump, by adding a little water to the sump pit, to make sure it works.

Septic Tank

You may think your tank doesn’t need pumped because you never have problems, but all that wonderful microbial digestion happening inside your tank still results in a byproduct of sludge that takes up valuable capacity and must be removed with periodic pumping. Check with your local extension in Grove, WA, for recommendations on septic pumping based on the size of your home and number of occupants.

Make flood water in the home an unlikely problem by routinely inspecting key home systems, and by doing maintenance routinely. You know you can count on professionals, day or night, to minimize damage by removing water fast.

Proactive Wild Land Fire Information

9/27/2018 (Permalink)

Even though our local home town may not be at immediate risk of wild land fires, we do live in a region of strong possibilities.

In the teachings of the American Red Cross, wild land fires are the number one most likely disaster concern in our territory. Wild land fires can easily reach structures if in the path of the fire line. 

The best way to counter act that possibility is to prepare your surroundings and heed the warnings of the local media. Be aware of the different types of warnings. 

Take a moment to read and follow the advice below. 

  • Clear leaves and other debris from gutters, eaves, porches and decks. This prevents embers from igniting your home.
  • Remove dead vegetation and other items from under your deck or porch, and within 10 feet of the house. Learn more about the basics of defensible space on the Firewise website. 

If any type of fire disaster has affected your life, home or business, please call us. 

SERVPRO of W. Vancouver/Clark Co. 360-254-0049

More tips on how to avoid a wildfire.

9/27/2018 (Permalink)

Part 2 of keeping your home safe during the wildfire season.

  • Screen or box-in areas below patios and decks with wire mesh to prevent debris and combustible materials from accumulating.
  • Remove flammable materials (firewood stacks, propane tanks) within 30 feet of your house, deck or porch. 
  • Wildfire can spread to tree tops. Prune trees so the lowest branches are 6 to 10 feet from the ground. 
  • Keep your lawn hydrated and maintained. If it is brown, cut it down to reduce fire intensity. Dry grass and shrubs are fuel for wildfire.
  • Don't let debris and lawn cuttings linger. Dispose of these items quickly to reduce fuel for for fire.
  • Inspect shingles or roof tiles. Replace those that are loose or missing to prevent ember penetration. 
  • Cover exterior attic vents with metal wire mesh no longer than 1/8 inch to prevent sparks from entering the home.
  • Enclose under-eave and soffit vents or screens with metal mesh to prevent ember entry.

Remember to give us a call if your home or business is covered in smoke or soot after a wildfire.

SERVPRO of W. Vancouver/Clark Co. 360-254-0049

Prevention of Mold issues

9/27/2018 (Permalink)

Effective prevention of mold problems information:

The primary physical damage from water or moisture usually includes wet floorings, walls, ceilings, and furnishings. Secondary damage to other furnishings and structural components can result from indoor humidity or molds that may developed as a result of improper drying. If water and moisture problems are not addressed promptly, molds and other microbes can begin to grow. These microorganisms can feed on a variety of materials including wood, paper, paint, adhesives, and backing materials.

Proper, prompt water mitigation is essential in preventing mold and additional damage from a water loss.  So if the unthinkable happens, please call SERVPRO @ 360-254-0049 so we can turn your tramatic "before" into a "happily ever after" ... "Like it never even happened."

SERVPRO W. Vancouver/Clark Co.

3 Maintenance Tips To Avoid an Expensive Pipe Break

9/26/2018 (Permalink)

Broken pipe in a Felida, WA shop

Making a business claim in Felida, WA, as a result of water damage is often an unpleasant experience. There are various steps you can take as a business owner or manager to maintain your pipes and decrease the likelihood of a pipe break.

1. Monitor Your Bills

Although pipe breaks can occur suddenly, there are often signs that a pipe is damaged before the pipe breaks entirely. Pipe leaks can be a sign that your pipes aren’t working properly, and knowing the cost of your business’s average water bill can help you catch a leaky pipe before it creates too much damage. Keeping a check on your water bills could save you from having to make a business claim at a later date.

2. Be Proactive

Pipes often burst if the temperature drops too low. One of the best ways to prevent your building’s pipes from breaking is to keep your building well above freezing, regardless of whether or not the building is occupied. Make sure you also inspect your pipes frequently to ensure that there are no hidden issues. Being proactive can help your business avoid having issues with pipes.

3. Have a Plan

Even with preventative measures in place, it’s still possible that your business may experience a pipe break. In the event that a pipe does break, it’s essential to know the safest and quickest way to shut off the water in your building. It’s also recommended that you tell others how to shut the water off in your building in the event that damage from water occurs when you’re not present. Shutting off the water in your building can prevent excessive damage and can ultimately save you time and money.

To avoid making a business claim due to water damage, there are various measures you can take to protect your building. By taking these steps and working with a team of experts to keep your pipes well-maintained, you’ll be less likely to experience damage from broken pipes in your building.

What Do You Need To Know About Cleaning Belongings After Flooding?

9/19/2018 (Permalink)

Roof damage after wind storm in Hazel Dell, WA

After a storm passes through Hazel Dell, WA, you may need to make some repairs to your house. This is especially true if the bad weather caused water to fill your space. However, repairing the structure of your house isn't all you'll have to do. You will have to start a content cleaning procedure if you want to repair and keep any of your possessions. Your residential storm remediation team can help with this task. You can also check out the following three tips for even more help through this unexpected situation.

  1. Not everything can be saved. While you may want to keep as much as possible, some items cannot be saved after they are affected by a flood. The waters brought into your home may include contaminants that leave your belongings beyond repair. Even if the water that filled your house came from a clean water source, porous items may be too waterlogged to get properly cleaned. You will have better luck cleaning nonporous belongings.
  2. Electronics require special consideration. Before you try to power on your computer or television, you need to make sure it is ready to get used again. If you do not properly clean electronics after they are filled with black water, you may end up doing even more damage to the device. Most electronics need to be cleaned by a specialist.
  3. The dry-out process is important. Not only do you want to make sure all of your possessions are properly cleaned, but you also have to take the time to dry everything out. If you undertake content cleaning, but forgot the proper drying out procedures, you may introduce mold spores and other contaminants back into your house.

When your home is flooded by storm waters, you may have a wide range of repairs to make to your house. If any of your belongings are affected, you may also have to do some content cleaning to get your Hazel Dell, WA, house back to normal

How To Know If You Have Mold Coverage

9/12/2018 (Permalink)

Mold remediation in Vancouver, WA

How To Know If You Have Mold Coverage

If you rent your home in Vancouver, WA, sometimes the lines between the damages the property owner's insurance and the problems your own rental insurance covers get blurred. When it comes to mold damage, the responsibility for remediation services can be determined by answering a few key questions. 

1. Did you know about it? Insurance companies expect their policyholders to be observant and responsible. If you know about a mold problem and you let it get out of hand, the insurance company is probably not going to cover the cost of mold removal. If, on the other hand, there is no way you could know that the damage exists, the expenses are likely to be covered by either the owner's property policy or your rental insurance.

2. Did you do something about it? The next step after knowledge is action. If you know there is a problem, and you do not report it or do nothing to fix it, you are going to have a hard time convincing your insurance company that you deserve compensation for the repairs. If, however, you reported the problem as soon as you discovered it, your agent is more likely to be willing to work with you to see if you can get money to pay for remediation.

3. Does your policy specifically mention mold? Most renters' insurance policies typically cover only the policyholder's belongings. The mold on the wall caused by high humidity, therefore, probably falls under your landlord's responsibility and thus his or her insurance. If the property owner doesn't fix the problem, however, you may be at a disadvantage. This is a time when it's good to have a specific mold clause in your policy to cover you in circumstances where the property owner refuses to do so.

In general, damage to your personal items is your responsibility, while damage to the building falls under the property owner's tasks. It's important to know what is and is not covered by your policy.

Important Watertight Features of Your Building

8/21/2018 (Permalink)

Air mover on a commercial storm damage in Cherry Grove,CA

If you expect your Cherry Grove, WA, building to keep water out during a storm, you need to make sure it is watertight. A leaky roof, for example, can lead to rain damage even in the mildest of storms. As you try to figure out how to keep water out of your commercial property, you need to think about the watertight elements, including the following:

  • Roofing
  • Siding
  • Windows

Checking out these features before the stormy season can help you reduce the need for a commercial restoration specialist.


This system acts as the top layer of your building envelope. Not only do the shingles play a role in keeping moisture from seeping into your building, but so does the underlayment, edging and roof deck. You need to make sure every component of your roof is in top shape to ensure your property is at its best.


The siding and sheathing work together to create a watertight barrier around the sides of your building. Cracked or warped siding could allow rain damage to affect your property. Even a loose board could spell disaster if the wind gets strong enough to rip it off.


The doors and windows of your property act as a vulnerable point. Rain may be able to pool along the frames of the fixtures if they are not properly installed. When water seeps through the frames, you may end up with black mold growth in places you don't want it. Before a storm hits, you need to check each window and door to make sure the weather stripping is in good condition. You could also check the panes and jambs for signs of defect.

The building envelope helps keep the rain damage to a minimum. If any part of this system is damaged or missing, you may end up with a lot of water in your space after any storm. It may be beneficial to hire a professional inspector.

Fixing Your Roof After Fire Damage: Three Helpful Tips

8/19/2018 (Permalink)

Electrical fire damage in a Ridgefield, WA home

If your Ridgefield, WA, business has recently suffered damage from a fire, there’s a good chance that your roof was affected. Approaching your roof repair in the best way is a crucial step in the fire cleanup process. Here are three tips that you can take to make the process easier on yourself.

1. Take Advantage of Tarp Services

Placing a temporary tarp on your roof is an excellent way to help keep the elements out of your property after a commercial fire. Take advantage of tarp services from fire damage companies who can install a high-quality tarp for you while you make repair plans.

2. Stay Away If the Building Is Unsafe

This may not seem like a typical repair tip, but you will be of no use in the fire cleanup process if you are injured by hazards present in a building that has not been cleared for reentry by the fire department. In some cases, flames can even build back up at the sight of a former fire. If you are not supposed to be on the property, stay away until the coast is clear.

3. Research Repair Companies

Make sure that the company making roof repairs knows what they are doing. Fire damage can range from holes cut by firefighters to help them during the fire process to destruction caused by the smoke and flames. In some cases a fire restoration company may be able to fix the damage, as well.

Fire cleanup is going to be an emotional process for you, especially when you have to think about the ways that any fire damage is affecting your business. Having a plan in place and using your best judgment where safety and repair decisions are concerned are important in order to get your roof fixed as soon as possible and get your employees back to work.

3 Types of Contaminated Water

8/14/2018 (Permalink)

Water loss on a bathroom in a Felida, WA home

Water damages are a frustrating and time-consuming problem. When you take into account the risks associated with contaminated water and the possibility of secondary water damage, the entire situation can be very overwhelming. It's important that you identify the type of water you're dealing with before you decide to handle any repairs on your own. Sewer backups, for example, contain black water and should only be addressed by a Felida, WA, professional.

1. Clean Water

Category 1 water is safe to handle. During a flooding situation, clean water may come from a leaky faucet or a break somewhere in the supply line. Unfortunately, if the situation isn't resolved, clean water can become contaminated and turn into category 2 or 3 water. Work quickly to thoroughly clean up and dry out your home when it is affected by clean water.

2. Gray Water

This contaminated water may cause trouble, but isn't as hazardous as black water, unless left untreated. It may carry viruses, bacteria, or urine, but it doesn't contain any feces. Overflowing toilets, dishwashers, and washing machines are some sources of gray water. Depending on what's in the water, it may be safe for you to handle this type of flooding on your own. If you aren't sure, contact a water damage specialist.

3. Black Water

The most serious of the three categories of contaminated water is black water. This type of contamination often contains untreated sewage, bacteria and viruses, chemicals, and microbial growth. Any contact with this type of water could lead to severe, lasting damages. Any water entering your home from the sewer system or from outside your home should be treated as black water.

Water damage is assessed to ensure the well-being of your family and home. Work closely with professionals who have the right training and equipment to deal with a flooding situation. You'll have lasting peace of mind, knowing that flooding has been dealt with appropriately.

4 Steps To Take When You Find Mold in Your Rented Space

7/24/2018 (Permalink)

Once the landlord is alerted to the mold contamination problem, mold cleanup professionals will arrive to complete testing and provide remediation.

There are few things that can throw panic into your day like finding mold in your Vancouver, WA, building. Evidence of mold colonies encroaching into your space is frustrating to you and the property owner. The key to resolving this problem efficiently and effectively is taking quick action.

1. Notify Your Landlord Immediately

Does your landlord respond best to a phone call or a text? Do you need to contact the property owner through the mail? Choose the method of contact that is sure to get the quickest response. After making contact, be sure to keep a paper record of your interactions. The landlord may be responsible for mold cleanup but could claim not to have known about the problem. Your paper trail protects you from becoming responsible.

2. Take Pictures of the Mold

A photographic record is beneficial for several reasons, such as giving your landlord important information to share with the insurance company and providing valuable information for remediation experts. The photos could also be included in your record of the situation. However, be careful not to disturb the area to avoid releasing any mold spores.

3. Prevent Further Growth or Spreading

One of the best ways to prevent mold colonies from developing is to quickly clean up water damage as soon as it occurs. Whether you found a leak around a toilet or a window swamp cooler has been dripping, you need to alert the property owner and take all necessary steps to correct the water damage. Your quick response will limit the amount of mold cleanup you have to do.

4. Stay Out of the Area During Testing

Once the landlord is alerted to the mold contamination problem, mold cleanup professionals will arrive to complete testing and provide remediation. The testing provides direction for remediation efforts. Once Vancouver, WA, professionals have completed their work, you can confidently return to your day-to-day activities. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROwvancouverclarkco.com/

Avoiding Fires While Grilling

7/24/2018 (Permalink)

Cooking outdoors for friends and family is a special treat.

People in Vancouver, WA, and all over the country enjoy a good barbecue, and frankly, what’s not to love? Besides the traditional hamburgers, hot dogs, chicken, ribs and steak, veggies, fruits, and even pizza have found their way to flame cooking. By following some simple tips, you can stay safe and avoid the inconvenience of a grill fire.

Tips for Safe Charcoal Grilling

A bbq fire that gets out of control could cause damage to a home by engulfing flammable materials near the grill. In that case, there are professionals who stand ready to help with the remediation of bbq smoke damage to your home. However, grilling with charcoal or propane gas without drama is easy to do if you heed the following safety tips.

• All grills must be used only outdoors and be constantly attended.
• Place the grill away from the house, railings, or overhanging vegetation or structures.
• Keep children and pets away from hot grills.
• Grills must be kept clean; remove all fats and grease to avoid a grill fire.
• Neither charcoal lighter fluid nor matches should be kept near a grill in use.
• Wait until coals have completely cooled before disposing of them in a metal container.

Tips for Safe Gas Grilling

Inspecting the tank, hoses, connections and the grill itself for leaks should be routine. To check any of these areas for leaks, before grilling apply a light solution of soap and water to connections and check for bubbles. If bubbles are seen, tighten connections and recheck. If the bubbling persists, have the grill serviced by a professional. If a leak is detected while grilling, turn off the tank and burners. If the smell of gas persists, call the fire department without delay.

Cooking outdoors for friends and family is a special treat. Eliminating the risk of a grill fire will make your next barbecue safe and enjoyable. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROwvancouverclarkco.com/

Making a Flood Damage Claim

7/24/2018 (Permalink)

Unless you live in an area prone to flooding, it is likely that a flood claim will be a once-in-a-lifetime event.

In the event that you have to make a flood claim in Vancouver, WA, following a storm, knowing how the process works will make a challenging situation a bit easier to endure. It is in your best interest to move quickly to contact your insurance adjuster, particularly when damage is widespread throughout your locality.

Begin Remediation Immediately

After you have notified your insurance company that your home has sustained flood damage, get to work right away on your own or by engaging the services of professionals to address it. Mold can begin to grow within 24 to 48 hours after inundation, so your adjuster will understand the need to move quickly.

• Take lots of digital photos and videos to document the damage to your home and property.
• Remove, but do not yet discard, materials that cannot be salvaged.
• Remove excess water by pumping, mopping and blotting to prevent further harm to your home.
• Get the air circulating with fans and air conditioners, and as a last step, dehumidifiers.
• Be sure to inspect, and work to dry, hidden areas where mold can grow.
• Begin the cleaning process for belongings that can be salvaged.
• Compile a list of losses and include any receipts you have retained. Your credit card history can be useful for the task of filing out an accurate flood claim.
• Keep receipts for any purchases of goods or services related to the flood.
• Sign the proof of loss statement that your adjuster produces. Additions can be made if necessary for the insurance claim.

It is important to understand that both the restoration of your home and the settlement of your insurance claim will be processes that require time, effort and patience.

Unless you live in an area prone to flooding, it is likely that a flood claim will be a once-in-a-lifetime event. Accurate documentation is the key to fair compensation. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROwvancouverclarkco.com/.

Cooking Safely to Avoid Fire and Smoke Damage

6/29/2018 (Permalink)

Cooking fires in Vancouver

Cooking fires are the leading cause home fires and fire-related injuries in the US. Fire Departments respond to an estimated 156,600 home structure fires every year and 2 out of 5 cooking related.

More that $853 Million in property damages each year are fires as a result of cooking.

Thousand of cooking related fire injuries are reported every year. SERVPRO offers you these safety tips to ensure your safety and your homes safety.

  1. Don't ever wear loose clothing while cooking
  2. Never leave cooking food unattended
  3. Check food regularly and never leave the house
  4. Keep children away from the cooking area
  5. Keep any flammables far away from the cooking area
  6. Clean cooking area often to prevent grease buildup
  7. Purchase a Fire extinguisher and be properly trained
  8. Always check the kitchen before going to bed
  9. Make sure smoke alarms are installed on each level of the home and outside all sleeping areas.

Prevention of Mold Issues

6/29/2018 (Permalink)

Nobody wants to come across this in their home or office, contact your SERVPRO of Vancouver & Clark Co. experts today! (360) 254-0049

Effective prevention of mold problems information:

The primary physical damage from water or moisture usually includes wet floorings, walls, ceilings, and furnishings.  Secondary damage to other furnishings and structural components can result from indoor humidity or molds that may developed as a result of improper drying.  If water and moisture problems are not addressed promptly, molds and other microbes can begin to grow. These microorganisms can feed on a variety of materials including wood, paper, paint, adhesives, and backing materials.  Proper, prompt water mitigation is essential in preventing mold and additional damage from a water loss.  So if the unthinkable happens, please call SERVPRO @ 360-254-0049 so we can turn your tramatic "before" into a "happily ever after" ... "Like it never even happened."

SERVPRO W. Vancouver/Clark Co.

Inspect and Respect Your Bathroom Supply Lines

6/21/2018 (Permalink)

Warranties are there to cover any water supply line leak.

A leak in any plumbing connections to your bathroom in Vancouver, WA, is worrisome. Supply line damage is often a source of flooding and costly repairs if untreated. To be proactive, it is beneficial for homeowners to know what to check and when to replace a supply line.

Know the Different Types of Warranties

Knowing what type of supply line is in your bathroom allows you to understand what warranty is offered if you find any damage. Most pipes have typical warranties depending on their material and the specific manufacturer:

• Plastic: five to eight years
• Copper: fifty years
• Steel braided: lifetime

Check the Valve Nut of the Supply Line

It’s important to identify exactly where the water is coming from. In the case of a toilet or sink leak, there are a few locations of where potential failure can happen. This involves checking if the connections are snug.

The nut holding the supply line to the valve may be loose and need tightening. If you find the nut is broken, it was probably overtightened and now needs replacement. If the bathroom leak doesn’t stop after tightening, you probably have supply line damage that requires a new line.

Evaluate the Water Line Valve Connection

After checking the smaller nut, there is a larger one to also tighten and check. While working on this one, water must be turned off to the bathroom to prevent flooding.

If the connection is threaded, the supply line needs to be removed before working on it. Using pliers and a wrench, the valve should be secured as gently as possible. The water should be turned back on and checked for leaks. If the leaking stops, reattach the supply line if it was removed.

Seek Help If the Leaking Won’t Stop

Warranties are there to cover any water supply line leak. It’s advised to check with the manufacturer of the connector for warranty details and reach out to your insurance for repairs or replacement. Damage caused by supply line damage, while unfortunate, can be offset by industry-standard procedures used by an expert bathroom water damage cleanup crew. Regardless of how far the water gets, it can be remedied. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROwvancouverclarkco.com/.

What You Need To Know About Category Two Water Damage

6/19/2018 (Permalink)

If you hear that you have category two water in your commercial building, you need to know that there may be some contamination.

Not all commercial flooding is the same. Typically, your water damage will fall into one of three categories.

• Clean: Category One
• Gray: Category Two
• Black: Category Three

Most people can easily understand categories one and three. Clean water is not contaminated and comes from a broken pipe that carried fresh water. Black water is highly contaminated and often comes from sewer lines. Category two falls somewhere in the middle. Here's what you need to know about this type of flooding.

Picks Up Contaminants

When a water pipe repair flood fits into this category, the water was able to pick up contaminants. This can happen when a pipe bursts on the second floor of your commercial building in Vancouver, WA. Even thought the water starts on the second floor, it often travels through drywall, flooring and other materials to reach the first floor and basement. As the water travels through these sources, it may pick up bacteria, viruses and other contaminants.

Sits Too Long

Clean water that is allowed to sit for long periods of time before the remediation is started can turn into category two. Mold spores may enter the water from the air or the liquid may leach contaminants from its surroundings. If you have a flooded building, you need to call in a commercial restoration team quickly to avoid this change.

Comes From Contaminated Source

Sometimes the water itself is contaminated when it enters your building. If you're not dealing with a water pipe repair, but instead have a dishwasher or washing machine overflow, the water could already be contaminated. Some toilet overflow may also fit into this category so long as no feces is in the flow.

If you hear that you have category two water in your commercial building, you need to know that there may be some contamination. Responding quickly to a water pipe repair can help you solve the problem and may even reduce your chances of dealing with unsavory contaminants. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROwvancouverclarkco.com.

Your Rights as a Tenant Post-Flood

6/13/2018 (Permalink)

For the most part, tenant and landlord responsibilities are pretty straight-forward. Landlords are responsible for major renovations and repairs, while tenants are responsible for day-to-day maintenance and upkeep, including cleaning and lawncare. However, some tenants still want to know if they're responsible for flood damage. In short, the answer is no, tenants are not responsible for flood damage. However, that does not mean tenants should negate renter's insurance.

Your landlord's flood insurance coverage covers the cost of flood remediation to the building and that's about it. If your personal property was damaged and if you do not have a renter's policy, you will not be able to recover the value of damaged items. Moreover, most renter insurance policies cover the cost of temporary housing and day-to-day living expenses in the event that a covered party is forced out of his or her rental home or unit. That said, you don't need to rely on insurance to help compensate for your losses.

Considerations To Make After a Flood

Though renter's insurance can come in handy post flood, it's not your only protection as a tenant. There are laws in place that protect tenants' rights after major events, both natural and preventable. Some of those laws may be of some use to you after a Vancouver, WA, flood:

• If you have to relocate because of damages caused by a flood or other disaster, you do not have to pay rent during the restoration period, and the landlord cannot find a new tenant in the meantime.
• You can terminate the lease at any time if you are forced to relocate due to a flood or other event.
• If the damage does not justify relocation but does pose an inconvenience, you may demand an adjustment of your rent.

Keep in mind that your renter's insurance policy does come with limits, and that flood damage will not be covered unless your policy specifically includes home flood coverage. Regardless of how the event occurred, tenants should always report an event to both their landlords and insurance companies. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROwvancouverclarkco.com/.

Hidden Water In Vancouver

5/31/2018 (Permalink)

Here to Help.

It's the water that you don't see after a leak that causes the most problems. 

It could contain bacteria, mold and other unseen damage. Before you risk further damaging the value of your facility or home by attempting to independently clean up the mess, call the SERVPRO professionals to ensure all aspects of your water damage are addressed properly. ensuring that further damage is not caused from hesitating to take action. SERVPRO professionals are trained to clean and restore your facility or home by identifying the water source, measuring the temperature and humidity for drying analysis, surveying the extent of the damage, performing emergency extractions, applying necessary treatments, utilize drying equipment and monitor drying, and disposing of all refuse.. We work closely with most all insurance carriers making the process run smoothly. "Like it never even happened." 

Please call SERVPRO of W. Vancouver/Clark Co. as soon as possible 24 hours a day 7 days a week service and response.

Why Having Renters Insurance Is a MUST!

5/31/2018 (Permalink)

Home disasters are hard enough already, you don't have to go through this alone, we are here to help 24/7!

One of the most common mistakes that tenants make is assuming that their landlord’s insurance will cover their belongings in the event of loss or damage. In addition, tenants may think that renters’ insurance is too expensive. However, the common myths associated with renters’ insurance that keep tenants from purchasing it can end up costing much more in the long run.

Importance of Renters’ Insurance

It’s imperative to always read the fine print in your lease. You may assume that your landlord is liable for damages caused by leaky roofs or broken appliances, but there could be a clause in your lease that negates landlord liability, such as for theft, or injuries to a guest visiting your apartment. Also, your lease may require you to obtain renters’ insurance, especially if you live in an expensive apartment. Regardless of whether or not it’s required, here are some common situations when renters’ insurance can really come in handy. According to Effective Coverage renters insurance in Washington costs around $15.00 a month for most people. That's basic coverage of $10,000 of personal property and $100,000 of liability. "Only 37 percent of renters have renters insurance whereas 95 percent of homeowners have a homeowners insurance policy, according to a 2014 I.I.I. poll conducted by ORC International." - Insurance Information Institute

Natural Disasters

If your rental home and property is damaged because of a natural disaster, such as wildfire, hail, or tornado, the landlord may or may not repair the home damages, but your personal property usually isn’t covered. Renters’ insurance will protect you in the event that a natural disaster occurs, but keep in mind that a few natural disaster coverage options are considered “riders,” which means they are add-on coverage, such as earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, floods, and hurricanes.

Unnatural Fires of Short-Circuit Damage

Fires due to electrical issues and short circuit damage may or may not be covered by your landlord. In most cases, it will depend upon the fine print in your lease. If it’s not covered by your landlord, you’ll be liable for smoke and fire damage not only to your own belongings, but to the property as well. If you live in a multi-dwelling building and the fire spreads to other tenants’ apartments, you could be liable for damages to their belongings as well any property damage to their dwelling.

For questions regarding renters insurance, or to schedule an inspection contact SERVPRO of W. Vancouver Clark Co. @ (360) 695-4418

Wiki Water Damage Information

5/31/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Extraction

Did you know that drywall exposed to standing water can wick up the wall at a rate of one inch per hour for the first 24 hours? 

If untouched for a few days it will eventually make it all the way up to the seam at the four foot mark of the wall. This has the potential to create serious problems.  Extracting standing water immediately stops the wicking and can reduce your drying time by more than a day.

It is 1,200 times easier to physically remove water than it is to evaporate it! This is why thorough professional extraction is the best approach and can reduce drying time and reduce further mitigation damages.  Why take the risk? 

Let the professional access the situation and begin the process. We work closely with most Insurance Carriers for your protection.

Call a SERVPRO franchise professional and let us make it..."Like it never even happened."

SERVPRO of W. Vancouver/ Clark Co. @ 360-254-0049

Prepare Your Home

5/31/2018 (Permalink)

Call SERVPRO of W. Vancouver/Clark County today and let us help you put an Emergency Ready Plan (ERP) in place for your home or business!

There are simple things you can do to minimize the impact of storms on your home and surrounding property, as shown in the following emergency planning checklist:

General home maintenance

  • Check your roof regularly to make sure it’s in good condition
  • Keep gutters, downpipes and drains clear
  • Remove tree branches that are close to your house
  • Fix any corrosion, loose fittings and rotting or termite-affected timber
  • Secure loose items around your property

General home safety preparations

  • Ensure your home, contents and car insurance is adequate and current
  • Identify the safest room in which to shelter during a storm
  • Learn how to safely turn off your power, water and gas
  • Keep water containers, a camping stove and fuel safely on-hand

If you live in a flood-prone area

  • Store poisons and garden chemicals well above ground level
  • Identify indoor items you’ll need to raise or empty if flood threatens
  • Relocate power points well above previous flood levels

Contact SERVPRO of W. Vancouver/Clark Co. TODAY to help be prepared.


What Can Be Included on a Fire Claim?

5/17/2018 (Permalink)

Fire damage is not solely caused by the flames that rip through your commercial building.

If a fire breaks out in your Vancouver, WA, commercial building, the come back process can be difficult. Assessing the fire damage may overwhelm and confuse you. Some of the damage you found in your building couldn't possibly have been caused by the fire, so you may not know whether it can be included on your claim. Can your water-logged carpets be included on your insurance claim? As you try to figure out what counts as damage done by the fire, you need to remember the following:

• Flames affect structure, furnishings and equipment.
• Fire suppression causes water damage.
• Fire produces smoke and soot, which cause their own damage.

When you make your claim, you don't have to limit it to the damage done directly by the flames. Your fire restoration team may be able to help you better understand what you can include on your insurance claim.

Fire Damage

One of the main things your insurance adjuster will look for as he or she goes through your property is damage caused directly by the fire. This can include charred furniture, burnt walls and melted roof materials.

Fire Suppression Damage

Putting out a fire can cause damage too. Firefighters may have to add ventilation to your building to dampen and control the flames. This could mean breaking windows or cutting a hole in the roof. Suppression also requires lots of water, which means some of your building could be flooded or water logged.

Smoke Damage

Part of fire mitigation is taking care of the smoke stains and odor left after the flames are put out. Smoke often affects electronic devices, clothing, carpets, walls and ceilings. You may be able to include the cleaning and restoration costs on your claim.

Fire damage is not solely caused by the flames that rip through your commercial building. Instead, this damage can also be done by the byproducts of the flames and the tools used to stop the spreading of the fire. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROwvancouverclarkco.com/.

How To Stop Mold From Coming Back

5/16/2018 (Permalink)

When you hire a mold expert in Vancouver, WA, they will do more than remove black mold from your home.

If you have a patch of black mold that keeps growing back after you scrub it off, you may be wondering what you’re doing wrong. It can be even more frustrating if you’ve hired someone to handle the mold cleanup for you and it still grows back. The fact is, if you have a reoccurring mold problem, you have a problem with too much moisture in the affected area. An experienced mold remediation expert in Vancouver, WA, should be able to help you pinpoint the source of your moisture problem so that you can put an end to it.

Why and Where Mold Thrives

Mold releases spores, which are like tiny seeds that get carried from place to place by the wind. Mold spores can be found everywhere, outside and inside, so it’s impossible to completely remove all mold from your home. However, if spores don’t find the right growing conditions, they never grow into a visible mold colony. The key to keeping your home free from black mold is to make sure you don’t create the ideal conditions for it to grow.

Because spores are everywhere, mold only needs moisture and nutrition to grow. Most mold species can get nutrition from almost anything, including the paper in your drywall and the dust in the corners of your home. That means any area that is consistently damp is likely to grow mold. The most common sources of chronic moisture problems are the following.
• Poor ventilation
• Condensation
• Leaking roofs and windows
• Broken supply lines
• Leaking water pipes
Get Rid of Mold Forever

When you hire a mold expert in Vancouver, WA, they will do more than remove black mold from your home. They’ll also help you make sure it doesn’t return. With the use of hydrometers and infrared light, they can locate the hidden sources of moisture responsible for your mold problem. They also know how to open up walls to get at leaking pipes without doing unnecessary damage. Once you repair, replace or remove the source of dampness in your home, the mold won’t return. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROwvancouverclarkco.com/.

3 Tips for Planning a Fire Escape Route for Your Home

5/10/2018 (Permalink)

Creating a fire escape plan for your Vancouver, WA, home can protect your family from imminent danger in case the worst should happen.

If a fire were to break out in your Vancouver, WA, home, getting yourself and your family to safety would probably be your top priority. Since fires can happen unexpectedly, having a pre-planned fire escape plan is a wise idea and may help every member of your family get out of the house quickly. If you are ready to create this type of safety plan, there are a few tips you can keep in mind to make it efficient, effective and simple.

1. Plan With the Family

Creating an emergency escape plan with your family present can ensure that everyone living in your home is prepared in case of a fire emergency. Gather everyone together when you have at least an hour to discuss a plan and allow everyone to contribute their ideas. When everyone is prepared and aware of the escape route, this can increase the chances of preventing a disaster if a fire breaks out.

2. Plan More Than One Route

According to the American Red Cross, you have about two minutes to escape your home once a fire starts. If the fire starts near where you have planned to exit or it spreads there, this can cause you to become trapped. To prevent this, you might want to add more than one egress to your fire escape plan. Consider both a front and back entrance escape, either a door or a window, that your family can use if the other is blocked by flames.

3. Have Your Home Inspected for Fire Hazards

While having an escape plan is wise, having your home professionally inspected for potential hazards can reduce the chances of you ever needing it. Have a fire damage and restoration company look over your home and ask their techs for advice about what you can do to make it less prone to fires.

Creating a fire escape plan for your Vancouver, WA, home can protect your family from imminent danger in case the worst should happen. Take time to create and test your plan to give yourself as much peace of mind as possible.  For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROwvancouverclarkco.com/.

Water Damage Prevention

5/1/2018 (Permalink)

We can help! Call SERVPRO of W. Vancouver & Clark Co. today! (360) 254-0049

Burst Pipes in the water system is one of the most common plumbing problems both in the home and the public system. Several things can cause Burst Pipes, the main one been freezing conditions.

The pipe can be put under a great pressure through the system and any fault in the piping will be exposed over time and broken down. The effects of burst pipes can be dramatic and devastating all at the same time. A burst pipe on the main system can cause damage to property, put people out of homes and even close an entire area of a town and roads for a number of days. This can leave people without water and even homes for days.

We have integrated such complicated plumbing systems in our homes such as waste disposals, boilers and even garden features. Burst pipes within the home is simply the worst thing that can happen to your plumbing system. It is not the cost of the repair of the pipe or even the loss of the water whilst it is fixed, but the sheer amount and cost of the damage water can do.

If a pipe bursts in the ceiling or floor it can be some time before you notice and all too often the first you know is when the bulge appears or the water flows in a torrent.

The potential water loss from burst pipes in your house can be as much as 400 litres, that’s 2 full baths an hour. This means if you were away for a full day you could have up to 9,600 litres of water or 48 full baths of water in your house from burst pipes. If you were away for the week you could lose 47,200 litres of water in that week. The amount of litres lost is the equivalent to 336 full baths of water running through your house. 

If you do occur a water leak in your home or business call  SERVPRO of W. Vancouver / Clark Co. immediately! (360) 254-0049

Preventing Burst Pipes in your Business

5/1/2018 (Permalink)

Burst pipes can be devastating, so anything you can do to minimise the risk of a Burst Pipe happening in your business. As with most systems and parts of your office building prevention is by far the best solution, below we have highlighted several key things you can do to.

Ensure that any outside taps and piping including drain pipes for heating or overflow pipes are insulated. You can use insulating lagging or foam to do this but make sure you do not leave any joints, bends or taps exposed. For outside taps fitted covers are available.

Any piping that are in unheated areas such as dropped ceilings, basements and garages all need to be lagged with good quality pipe lagging.

Any pipes buried in the ground outside such as pipes to garages need to be buried deep enough and/or lagged.

Insulate your cold water tank, this is so often forgotten and can be the major cause of Burst Pipes.

Leave your heating on at least 54 degrees Fahrenheit at all times throughout cold spells. This will keep the system warm enough not to Burst Pipes and the water flowing.

Fix any dripping taps or existing leaks before the cold spell. Many Burst Pipes happen because of leaks.

Have your Central Heating System serviced regularly.

In particularly cold spells leave the ceiling open as this will allow the warm air to circulate around the space and warms any pipes in that space, reducing the risk of a Burst Pipe.

SERVPRO of W. Vancouver / Clark Co. can respond to your company quickly after it suffers a broken pipe.

Red Cross in Urgent Need of Blood Donors

5/1/2018 (Permalink)

The American Red Cross urgently needs blood donors to make an appointment to give this winter.  Eligible blood donors of all types are needed, especially those with O, AB, B negative and A negative.

Blood is needed to respond to emergencies large and small across the country everyday. 

Blood supplies are urgently needed now and throughout the winter to maintain sufficient blood supply for many patients in need.

Make an appointment today to donate blood by downloading the free Red Cross Blood Donor App,(http://www.redcross.org/bloodapp), visiting(http://redcrossblood.org), or calling 1800-RED CROSS(1800.733.2767)

Also, please consider becoming a volunteer for the American Red Cross. Lot's of assistance is needed in teaching the word of "Disaster Preparedness" in schools and businesses. All the training needed is provided by the American Red Cross at no expense to the volunteer. 

For further questions, please contact the local chapter of the American Red Cross or SERVPRO of W. Vancouver/Clark Co. @ 360-254-0049

Should Your Building Be Inspected for Mold?

4/30/2018 (Permalink)

You’ve finally found it: the perfect building for your needs. And you’ve got big plans for it. Take out a wall here, move the staircase over there, add a window over here. Your imagination is going wild, but before you get ahead of yourself, you need to be sure that this “perfect” building is actually perfect. The financials are all in order; the seller has accepted your offer and all that’s left is the building inspection. As you walk through with the inspector, paint colors and potential furnishings floating through your mind, the inspector points out some visible mold, and your questions about interior design are suddenly replaced with questions about mold. Do you need a mold inspection?

Signs of Potential Mold

Mold inspections in Vancouver, WA can be expensive, as can mold remediation. However, mold grows fast, and it can stealthily and silently wreak havoc behind the scenes of your otherwise perfect building. Visible black, gray or green spots on the walls, ceiling or floor clearly indicate a mold problem, and an inspection can help you determine the extent of the damage and put together a plan. But mold isn’t always obvious. Other signs of mold include:
- Discolored ceiling tiles, walls or floors, which may point to a leak or past water damage
- Buckled or warped flooring
- Evidence of past plumbing problems: for example, a missing sink or toilet.
- A strong musty or mildew smell.

Mold Remediation

If any of these indicators are present, it’s a good idea to schedule a mold inspection. Some mold problems are fairly easy to mitigate with antifungal and antibacterial treatments. Others may require advanced mold containment procedures and/or the removal of infested porous surfaces like carpet and drywall. In any case, evaluating potential mold problems before completing your building purchase will provide peace of mind and prevent complications down the road. Then, you can get back to the important business of making your vision of the perfect building a reality.

For more information, please visit us athttp://www.SERVPROwvancouverclarkco.com/.

4 Top Checklist Items for Plumbing Maintenance Inspections

4/23/2018 (Permalink)

Plumbing problems can happen in any building. Normal wear and tear, plumbing age and quality of a system’s construction materials all have an impact on plumbing performance. Being proactive in keeping a Vancouver, WA, commercial building’s plumbing system in good operating condition is a great way to protect your investment. It can also help you avoid a much more inconvenient and costly plumbing emergency in the future. Scheduling regular plumbing inspections may help identify small problems to be addressed before they become large. These four top checklist items for a plumbing maintenance inspection cover areas generally considered critical to proper operation of a plumbing system.

1. Fixtures

Quiet leaks and drips from fixtures such as toilets and faucets can waste thousands of gallons of water annually. Fixtures are typically tested during a maintenance inspection. Repairing these silent leaks may save a lot of money on future water bills.

2. Pipes

A visual inspection of pipes can be done to uncover evidence of leaks and signs of corrosion. When significant visible corrosion is noted, it may be a signal that the pipes are close to the end of their useful life. This can give you the opportunity to make a plan before the aging plumbing causes a bigger problem, such as a broken pipe.

3. Drains

A test of drains can uncover any blockages that need to be cleared. Slow draining sinks or toilets that require regular plunging may indicate a blockage. If allowed to persist, blockages can lead to backups and overflows with accompanying water damage.

4. Valves

Testing valves for proper operation may help prevent valve failure. Broken or faulty valves can add challenges to water main maintenance and repair. A simple check of a valve’s ability to open and close can be all that is needed to avert larger plumbing problems in the future.

While some plumbing problems may be unavoidable, it is generally much easier to make preventive plumbing corrections based on recommendations from a routine maintenance inspection than defer routine repairs.

For more information, please visit us athttp://www.SERVPROwvancouverclarkco.com/.

Water, Water Everywhere: A 3-Step Plan To Recover From Storm Damage

4/18/2018 (Permalink)

With little warning, homeowners in Vancouver, WA, can face water damage caused by catastrophic rains or flooding. In one year alone, water-related disasters caused over $280 billion in damages in the United States. Having a plan can make recovery from a storm much less stressful.

1. Protect Your Safety

After a flood, you may be in shock. While natural, this reaction won’t help your home recover. Flooding typically requires quick action. Ask yourself if it is safe to stay in your house. Are there live wires? Is it safe to mop up water or tear out wet carpet? If answers to these questions leave you feeling unsafe, leave the home.

2. Assess Your Options

Next, determine options for cleanup. Contact your insurance company to discuss coverage. If your house has suffered extensive damage, consider calling a professional for storm restoration.

3. Call a Professional

A storm damage cleanup and restoration company can take the burden off your shoulders by performing several services:

• Inspect and Assess. Professional cleaners often start by surveying the extent of water damage and checking for safety hazards.

• Extract Water. Powerful pumps and industrial vacuums are brought in to remove water from your home. Moisture detectors, hygrometers and infrared cameras may be used to find water hidden behind walls and ceilings.

• Dry and Dehumidify. In this step, high-speed air movers and industrial dehumidifiers help to reclaim your home. If necessary, professionals tear out wet materials to dry or throw out.

• Clean and Sanitize. Anyone who has been through a flood can tell you about the smell and fear of disease that follow. For this reason, professionals often work hard to remove odors, deodorize and sanitize your home.

• Restore. Ideally, professionals can restore your home to its formerly dry glory. Restoration can involve anything from minor repairs (tear out drywall, install carpet, repair flooring) to rebuilding entire rooms.

Storm damage may be out of your control. However, the right plan can help you take control of storm restoration.

For more information, please visit us athttp://www.SERVPROwvancouverclarkco.com/.

What To Do After a Storm Causes Roof Damage

3/29/2018 (Permalink)

High winds can do crazy things to your roofing system in Vancouver, WA. When storms cause shingles to tear off, it can be hard to know exactly what to do. You want to fix the problem before a roof leak starts, but where do you start?

Protect the Damaged Area

Your first step should be to call in a storm damage specialist. These experts will be able to help you locate the damage, come up with a repair plan and work with the insurance company. However, these specialists may not be able to get to your building right away. If you can't get professional help right away, you need to protect your roof so it doesn't get damaged further. If you want to stop a damaged roof from becoming a bigger problem, you need to use certain tools to cover the damaged area.

• Use tarps and plywood to cover any ripped, cracked or missing shingles.
• Remove weakened tree limbs to ensure they don't crash onto your building.
• Get rid of debris from the roof as this can tear up more shingles if high winds return.

Doing everything you can to protect the vulnerable part of your roof can help you avoid larger headaches. Your contractor may be able to give you more tips on how to get by until he or she can arrive.

Start a Repair Plan

Once the damaged roof has been assessed, you need to quickly enact a repair plan. If you wait too long to fix the issue, the missing shingles can turn into a roof leak. As you know, leaks can lead to major water damage that can take a lot of money to fix. It's better for you and your building if you can start a repair plan as quickly after the storm as possible.

The last thing you want after a storm is to worry about a roof leak. However, damaged shingles can lead to that exact situation. Taking the proper steps after a storm may help you mitigate your problems.

For more information, visit us at http://www.SERVPROwvancouverclarkco.com/.

2 Methods Professionals Use To Handle Your Wet Building Materials

3/29/2018 (Permalink)

Water damage in your Vancouver, WA, home can lead to extensive issues with the building materials in your living space. Anything from swelling wood to deteriorating insulation can occur as a result of a supply line leak or a pipe burst within your walls or under the floorboards. Therefore, it’s important to not only seek professional help for water pipe repair but to ensure that your property’s structural work is safe and intact. Here’s how the professionals can handle your building materials if they’ve been compromised by water damage.

1. They replace the swollen wood from any affected areas.

Whether you’ve sustained water damage to your kitchen cabinets, your living room floor or elsewhere, trained technicians are likely to replace any wood that has swelled to prevent any structural issues in the future. If the leak was bad enough and the spread of damage carried on for some time, tearing apart your carpets or floorboards to reach and replace the subfloor could be a necessity. Thankfully, for situations that aren’t dire, any drywall or real wood materials can often simply be dried and saved, preventing you from receiving a larger bill down the road.

2. They remove any wet insulation in the walls.

While swelling wood is a problem in itself, having untreated wet insulation in the home can become an even bigger problem. Therefore, water damage professionals will often remove damp areas of insulation to determine any stud damage that may be hiding behind the wet material or to simply replace the insulation altogether to prevent disintegration or mold growth.

When water damage has occurred to your Vancouver, WA, home’s building materials and you need water pipe repair, it’s important to call upon the help of trained technicians. With their help, your residence can be cleared of any swelling wood or other hazardous materials or waste, and you can gain peace of mind knowing your home is safe again for you and your family.

For more information, visit us at http://www.SERVPROwvancouverclarkco.com/.

Best Ways To Handle Mold Issues in Your Home

3/29/2018 (Permalink)

Anyone who has ever had flooding at home knows the severe problems this can cause. Water damage often leads to the growth of mold, and though you can take measures to prevent water problems in your basement or other parts of your home, it’s not always easy to keep this invader at bay. If you do see mold growth at home, you need to use effective steps to get rid of this pest or to effectively control it.

Fix the Leaks

Anyone who has a home in Vancouver, WA, has likely had a few occasions where he or she has identified leaky pipes or widows. It’s not uncommon, either, to detect leaks in your roof, especially in older homes. Though you may be tempted to put off repairing these items, procrastination can eventually lead to significant water damage. Small leaks can build up over time, sometimes without you even noticing it.

Clean the Right Way

Flood cleanup can be time consuming and costly, but proper cleaning is one of the best ways to promote mold prevention. Make sure you dry the affected area thoroughly. You should also clean moldy areas by doing the following:

• Use soap and water.
• Use a bleach solution with one cup of laundry bleach with one cup of water.
• Don’t not use ammonia with bleach.

Use Proper Ventilation

The laundry room can be one of the biggest culprits for mold growth. This shouldn’t be a problem area, however, if you have the right vents in place and keep them free of clogs or obstructions. Also, consider opening a window if you start to smell mildew.

Though water damage affects many homeowners, it doesn’t have to cause widespread, costly damage in your Vancouver, WA, home. Use these tips to protect your family and to keep your home safe.

For more information, visit us at http://www.SERVPROwvancouverclarkco.com/.

9 Smoke Odor Removal Musts

10/27/2017 (Permalink)

"I live in a crack house. Well, it used to be a crack house until the new owner threw out the old tenants and restored the home, to the relief of the neighborhood. But I’m afraid that it wasn’t completely restored. I’m a non-smoker, and on humid days the smell of cigarette smoke can be pretty pervasive in some rooms. I’m guessing a lot of it may come from the popcorn ceiling that was only painted over when it probably should have been removed. But on fire restoration jobs, this is a much bigger issue."

One of the most critical concerns for fire restoration contractors is failing to control or eradicate odors. This problem can lead to frustrated customers as well as potential legal and financial dangers. Eliminating this problem is made more difficult when remodeling work was undertaken by either inexperienced homeowners or unprofessional contractors, as their alterations may have contributed to hidden places for fire and smoke damage to linger.

Remediating a fire loss may also take longer, meaning you might have to wait a while before you’re paid. In fact, some contractors have avoided getting involved in fire restoration because it seems too complicated. But it’s not, as long as you appreciate the principles and correct techniques of fire restoration and odor control. Here are some things to remember:

  • Make sure there’s a straightforward exchange of information between you, the customer, the insurance adjuster and any possible subcontractors. Communicating clearly and setting expectations is a critical component of the job.
  • Get a written agreement from the homeowner on exactly what areas have been damaged by the fire and what items should be salvaged or discarded. You don’t want them coming back to you later claiming you’ve trashed an heirloom or didn’t finish the job.
  • The way that fire and water damage jobs are handled do have some similarities, but they can’t be interchanged. Confirm that only techs with at least a Fire and Smoke Restoration Technician (FSRT) certification are allowed to work on the site. Being Odor Control Technician (OCT) certified is also helpful.
  • Smoke and fire residues can be poisonous, as fires can include the demolition of plastic, foam, fabric, carpet, wood products, synthetic textiles, and asbestos-containing materials. Ash and smoke can also cause widespread corrosion, etching and staining, as well as persistent powerful odors. So removing these and their sources should be your first priority.
  • If the damage is localized, contain those areas to assist in removing odors.
  • Carefully inspect all areas that may have numerous layers of wall board. These may hide unexpected gaps and voids that turn into superhighways for circulating smoke and odor.
  • Examine all wall cavities, duct work, and plumbing chases to establish whether they suffered any smoke residue or fire damage.
  • Use a borescope to discover any damage that may otherwise have been impossible to see without having to completely remove a part of the structure. If the fire is recent, use of a thermal imaging camera may reveal hidden warmer areas, indicating possible fire damage.
  • Aside from losing their valuables, the majority of homeowners are underinsured. They may even have to take up temporary lodging. So you’re going to be dealing with some very distraught people. Train yourself and your employees on how to be empathetic and ways to successfully communicate with them.

When eliminating malodors on fire jobs, remember that there are several factors that can impact the strength of the odor:

  • Size - The bigger the fire, the more objects have burned, and thus there’s been more smoke.
  • Length -The longer a structure has been exposed to smoke, the more deeply odor has seeped into porous materials.
  • Space - When a fire occurs in a smaller room, the smoke odor becomes more intense and concentrated.
  • Stuff - Not all odors are equal. For instance, burning wood, plastic and protein all have very different smells and consistency. This may influence the types of odor eliminators you use.

WHERE the damage occurred and WHAT burned will always be your two main concerns in fire restoration. Knowing the full answers to those questions will likely ensure that your restoration efforts will be complete and that you’ll be able to eliminate all of those irritating malodors, while at the same time eliminating any call backs.

Source: ODOROX

What To Do When Your Business Encounters Extreme Damage

10/4/2017 (Permalink)

Remain positive and hopeful because SERVPRO of W. Vancouver is here to help 24 hours a day, 365 days a year! 360-695-4418

Natural disasters can cause significant and costly damages to homes, roads and, of course, local businesses. While you should always be prepared for such events, by maintaining adequate insurance coverage and secure file backups, you sometimes get little warning before disaster strikes. And if something happens, you'll want to get your business back up and running as quickly as possible.

Unfortunately, the road to recovery isn't always easy. A previous Business News Daily article about recovery from 2012's Superstorm Sandy reported that just 25 percent of small businesses had backups of critical programs and data before the storm, and even fewer (20 percent) said they had protected their buildings from the storm or prepared emergency survival kits.

Execute your business continuity plan

Your business continuity plan should prepare you for major disaster scenarios, such as the loss or unavailability of IT systems, key people or a facility third party. Make sure key personnel will have access to the plan on secured mobile devices immediately after a disaster.

Don't have a business continuity plan? This Business News Daily guideoutlines how to create one.

Check your backed-up data

You should have already backed up and safely stored your most critical data: your business license, major contracts and legal documents, tax returns and financial statements, and other critical business and customer documents. Following a disaster, make sure your vital records are still securely accessible from the devices you're using.

Communicate with your employees and external parties

Leverage your website, social media channels and text messaging to reach your employees, customers, partners and vendors. Reassure your customers that you're still in business, while making sure that no communications will inadvertently create legal liability or adversely affect service-level agreements.

Contact your insurance company

Once you and your employees are safe and accounted for after a disaster, survey the damage. Contact your insurance company to file a claim. You should always do an occasional check-up to ensure you have adequate coverage for major disaster types, including cybersecurity insurance. Office break-ins and vandalism may occur during a disaster, and if someone steals computer equipment or paper documents containing personally identifiable information, and the information was not encrypted, you may have a legal requirement to notify your customers. To be safe, encrypt your customer data, digitize paper documents and store all critical data in a secure, cloud-based document-management system.

If your insurance doesn't cover the full cost of the damage, you may be eligible for a disaster loan from the Small Business Administration of up to $2 million. The SBA may even provide working capital loans, even if you didn't have any property damage.

Remain positive and hopeful because SERVPRO of W. Vancouver is here to help 24 hours a day, 365 days a year!

Source: Business News Daily

What To Do Before, During, and After A Fire

10/4/2017 (Permalink)

Contact your fire experts at SERVPRO of W. Vancouver / Clark Co. for further assistance in recovering from the fire @ (360) 695-4418

Before A Fire

  1. Install the right number of smoke alarms. Test them once a month and replace the batteries at least once a year.
  2. Teach children what smoke alarms sound like and what to do when they hear one.
  3. Ensure that all household members know two ways to escape from every room of your home and know the family meeting spot outside of your home.
  4. Establish a family emergency communications plan and ensure that all household members know who to contact if they cannot find one another.
  5. Practice escaping from your home at least twice a year. Press the smoke alarm test button or yell “Fire“ to alert everyone that they must get out.
  6. Make sure everyone knows how to call 9-1-1.
  7. Teach household members to STOP, DROP and ROLL if their clothes should catch on fire.

If A Fire Starts

  • Know how to safely operate a fire extinguisher
  • Remember to GET OUT, STAY OUT and CALL 9-1-1 or your local emergency phone number.
  • Yell "Fire!" several times and go outside right away. If you live in a building with elevators, use the stairs. Leave all your things where they are and save yourself.
  • If closed doors or handles are warm or smoke blocks your primary escape route, use your second way out. Never open doors that are warm to the touch.
  • If you must escape through smoke, get low and go under the smoke to your exit. Close doors behind you.
  • If smoke, heat or flames block your exit routes, stay in the room with doors closed. Place a wet towel under the door and call the fire department or 9-1-1. Open a window and wave a brightly colored cloth or flashlight to signal for help.
  • Once you are outside, go to your meeting place and then send one person to call the fire department. If you cannot get to your meeting place, follow your family emergency communication plan.

Recovering After A Fire

  • Call 9-1-1. Give first aid where needed; cool and cover burns to reduce the chance of further injury or infection.
  • Let friends and family know you’re safe.
  • People and animals that are seriously injured or burned should be transported to professional medical or veterinary help immediately.
  • Stay out of fire-damaged homes until local fire authorities say it is safe to re-enter.
  • Contact your fire restoration and cleanup experts at SERVPRO of W. Vancouver / Clark Co. for further assistance in recovering from the  fire @ (360) 695-4418.

Source: American Red Cross - National Sponsor of SERVPRO

What Is Black Mold?

10/4/2017 (Permalink)

If you suspect you have a mold problem, contact SERVPRO of W. Vancouver / Clark Co. immediately.

You may have seen sensational news reports that warn about the dangers of “black mold” or “toxic mold”. These reports can be alarming and confusing so it’s beneficial to get the facts to better understand mold.

Stachybotrys chartarum is the type of mold often called black mold, and it does produce allergens and irritants. However, many types of mold can produce allergens and irritants. Treat any mold with caution – stay out of affected areas and don’t touch or disturb the mold.

Learn more about mold and what to do until help arrives by visiting Mold Damage Tips

How Do I Tell If It’s Black Mold?

Since many types of mold can cause reactions, you should contact us regardless of the color or type of mold. In many instances, multiple types of mold may exist in the same house or structure. If you suspect you have a mold problem, contact SERVPRO of W. Vancouver / Clark Co. immediately. 

Understanding Mold

When water intrudes into your property, mold growth can start in as little as 48 hours. Consider the following mold facts:

  • Mold is present almost everywhere, indoors and outdoors.
  • Mold spores are microscopic, float along in the air, and may enter your home through windows, doors, or AC/heating systems or even hitch a ride indoors on your clothing or a pet.
  • Mold spores thrive on moisture. Mold spores can quickly grow into colonies when exposed to water. These colonies may produce allergens and irritants.
  • Before mold remediation can begin, any sources of water or moisture must be addressed. Otherwise the mold may return.
  • Mold often produces a strong, musty odor, and that odor can lead you to possible mold problem areas.
  • Even higher-than-normal indoor humidity can support mold growth. Keep indoor humidity below 45 percent.

Preparing Your Home For Winter Weather

9/27/2017 (Permalink)

If you encounter damage to your home this winter make sure you call SERVPRO of Vancouver 24 hours a day, 365 days a year! (360) 695-4418

If you live in the Northeast, Midwest, or Northwest you know the drill. Four to five months of heavy clothes, seeing your breath and generally freezing outside. Sometimes even elsewhere, Old Man Winter stops in for an unexpected visit. But beyond the inconvenience and discomfort, a winter storm or other severe weather conditions can cause real damage. So it's important to think about winter preparedness.

Protecting your home is vital. A frozen water pipe can burst and flood your house or basement. An ice dam in your gutter can cause water to seep into and saturate an interior wall. And then there’s your car. Making sure it’s prepped to face winter’s worst is just as critical. After all, what would happen if a blizzard stranded you in your car?

Prepare yourself

Some winter weather tips to help you get through a severe stretch of cold:

  • Stay indoors during the storm.
  • Walk carefully on snowy, icy walkways.
  • Avoid overexertion when shoveling snow. It’s a serious workout, and going at it too hard can bring on a heart attack − a major cause of death in the winter. If you must shovel snow, stretch before going outside.
  • Stay dry. Wet clothing loses all of its insulating value and transmits the cold rapidly.

Cold-related injuries

  • Watch for signs of frostbite: loss of feeling and white or pale appearance in extremities. If any of these occur, get medical help immediately.
  • Watch for signs of hypothermia: uncontrollable shivering, memory loss, disorientation, incoherence, slurred speech, drowsiness and apparent exhaustion. 
  • If any of the hypothermia symptoms appear, get yourself (or the victim) to a warm location, remove wet clothing, and warm the center of the body first. Give the patient warm, non-alcoholic beverages if they are conscious. And of course, get medical help as soon as possible.

Prepare your home

Some tips to brace your home for a winter storm:

  • Clean out the gutters, disconnect and drain all outside hoses. If possible, shut off outside water valves.
  • Insulate walls and attics, and caulk and weather-strip doors and windows.
  • Repair roof leaks and remove tree branches that could get weighed down with ice or snow and fall on your house – or your neighbor's. (Avoid liability for the latter.)
  • Wrap water pipes in your basement or crawl spaces with insulation sleeves to slow heat transfer.
  • Consider an insulated blanket for your hot water heater.
  • If you have a fireplace, keep the flue closed when you're not using it.
  • Have a contractor check your roof to see if it would sustain the weight of a heavy snowfall.
  • Make sure your furniture isn't blocking your home’s heating vents.
  • During cold spells, keep cabinet doors open to allow warm air to circulate around pipes, particularly those in the kitchen and bathrooms.
  • Keep a slow trickle of water flowing through faucets connected to pipes that run through unheated or unprotected spaces.
  • If your house will be unattended during cold periods, consider draining the water system.
  • Avoid ice dams – where water from melted snow refreezes in the gutters and seeps in under the roof, soaking interior walls. Here’s how:
    • Ventilate your attic.
    • Insulate the attic floor well to minimize the amount of heat rising through the attic from within the house.
    • Consider having a water-repellent membrane installed under your roof covering.

Water Damage Caused by Ice Dams

9/27/2017 (Permalink)

If you encounter water damage this winter pick up the phone and call SERVPRO of Vancouver 24/7 365 days a year! (360) 695-4418

An Ice Dam is a hump of ice that forms at the edge of a roof under certain wintertime conditions. An ice dam can damage both your roof and the inside of your home. It will put gutters and downspouts at risk too.

There are several things you can do to avoid getting an ice dam or to reduce the risk of damage after one has formed, but there’s really only one cure: a combination of better sealing, insulation, and venting in the attic and eaves.


An ice dam forms when the roof over the attic gets warm enough to melt the underside of the layer of snow on the roof. The water trickles down between the layer of snow and the shingles until it reaches the eave of the roof, which stays cold because it extends beyond the side of the house. There, the water freezes, gradually growing into a mound of ice.

The flatter the pitch of the roof, the easier it is for an ice dam to get a grip. Gutters at the eaves can also trap snow and ice. If snow and ice build up high enough in the gutter, it can provide a foundation for an ice dam.


When an ice dam gets big enough, melted water backs up behind it and seeps underneath the shingles. Eventually, it will drip into the insulation and down into the ceilings and exterior walls beneath the eave, ruining sheetrock and paint. If the ice dam breaks free, it can pull shingles and gutters off with it, and it will damage anything it falls on: shrubs, windowsills, cars, pets, and people. If the roof sheathing stays wet, it can form mildew and start to rot.


There are two avenues of attack: dealing with an existing ice dam and preventing one in the first place.


1. Remove the ice dam by breaking it free in small chucks. Do NOT use an ax or other sharp tool! You’ll cut through the shingles. Instead, tap lightly with a blunt mallet. This is slow, dangerous work, so hire someone experienced at roofing. Even if you do it safely, the chunks of ice can take pieces of shingle with them.

2. Clear out gutters and downspouts. Again, this is ladder work and an easy way to damage either plastic or metal gutters and spouts.

3. Melt troughs through the ice dam with calcium chloride ice melter. Do NOT use rock salt! It will damage paint, metals, and plants beneath the eave and wherever the salty water drains.

A good trough-maker is a tube of cloth (a leg from an old pair of panty hose works well). Fill it with calcium chloride, tie off the top, and lay it vertically across the ice dam. It will slowly melt its way down through the dam, clearing a path for the underlying water to flow free.


You can scrape snow from the roof whenever it falls, using a snow rake from below or a broom or plastic shovel from above. BE CAREFUL: The first method can bury you in snow, while the second can send you slipping off the roof. Hire someone who knows how to use a safety line.

You can replace your shingle roof with standing seam or other metal roof. Or you can replace the bottom three feet or so of your shingle roof with a wide metal drip edge. Whatever you do, install a water-repellent membrane under any new roofing.

NOTE: If your roof is not very steep, an ice dam can still form on metal roofing and drip edges.


All of these methods treat the symptoms, not the underlying problem, which is the warm roof, caused by poor insulation and venting of the space under the roof. We have found that the only way to cure an ice dam – and prevent one in the first place – is to:

1. Seal all points where warm air leaks from the living space into the spaces immediately below the roof sheathing.

2. Insulate the living space well enough to prevent conduction and convection of heat through the ceiling.

3. Vent the space between the insulation and the roof sheathing, so any heat that does leak through is carried away.

Smoke Detectors Save Lives

9/25/2017 (Permalink)

Smoke Detectors Save Lives

    • Three out of Five fire deaths occur in homes with no smoke alarms or when the alarms are not working.

    • Smoke alarm failures usually result from missing, disconnected, or dead batteries.

    • More than one-third(37%) of home fire deaths result from fires in which no smoke alarms are present

    • The risk of dying in a house fire is cut in half in homes with working smoke alarms.

    • Install smoke alarms at every level of the home along with every bedroom.

    • Be sure to test smoke alarms at least once a month using the test button.

    • Replace batteries in smoke alarms at least once a year.  If an alarm "chirps", the battery is low and should be replaced right away.

    • Replace smoke alarms every 10 years with brand new smoke alarms.

    • Information provided curtosity of The American Red Cross

Winter Weather Preparation

9/11/2017 (Permalink)

Most storm damage in the Northwest is caused by high winds and freezing temperatures. Make sure you're prepared!

*Protect your pipes from freezing. Allow water to drip from faucets when temperatures dip below freezing. Wrap outdoor faucets with an insulated faucet cover or towel.

*If leaving your structure for more than a few days, consider turning off the water supply. Have a designated person checking in on your structure. Keep your home or business at a moderate temperature helping to decrease the chance of pipes freezing and breaking. 

*Leave cabinet doors open to allow warm air to circulate around pipes while observing the status daily. 

*Clear gutters of all debris, leaves and other objects that can lead to blockage of the gutters ultimately causing roof damage and interior water leakage/damage. 

*Keep walkways and nearby storm drains clear of debris to alleviate flood hazard potentials. 

Whether it is heavy winds, rain, freezing temperatures, sleet or snow, all these factors can cause costly damage. While we cannot control the weather, we at SERVPRO are here to help you take a preventative approach and help take the sting out of winter weather. 

Further Questions and/or Mitigation Needs, Please Call 360-695-4418

Disaster Preparedness

9/11/2017 (Permalink)

It never hurts to be prepared!

*A note from our Sales and Marketing Manager - Shelly.

In the training's and certification's that I have completed through the American Red Cross, I can tell you that it is time to prepare for natural disasters of all types and sizes. 

The first step is to have a plan for all of the members of your family. 

Not all disasters happen when all of the family members are at home or even in one central location together. Make a plan as to where you will all meet once it's safe.

Choose a specific contact person outside of the state that you live in. Make sure all family members know the contact person's telephone number's and email address. Each person needs to check in with that person immediately if possible. The contact person can then share with all family members the where about's of all members that have checked in. 

Make sure each person knows what their role/responsibility/duty in survival/ is in the event that everyone is home when disaster strikes. 

For further preparedness planning, please call Shelly of SERVPRO of W. Vancouver/Clark Co. 360-991-6977

Quick Response & Proper Drying = No Mold

9/11/2017 (Permalink)

Don't be a victim to mold damage, call SERVPRO today!

The last thing you hope to ever worry about is "Mold."

The primary physical damage from water or moisture usually includes wet floors, walls, ceilings and furnishings. 

Secondary damage to other furnishings and structural components can result from indoor humidity or molds that may develop as a result of improper drying. If water and moisture problems are not addressed promptly, molds and other microbes can begin to grow. These microorganisms can feed on a variety of materials including wood, paper, paint, adhesives and backing materials. Proper and prompt water mitigation is essential in preventing mold and additional damage from a water loss.

So if the unthinkable happens, call SERVPRO so we can turn your traumatic before into a happily ever after. "Like it never even happened." Inspections are scheduled as an appointment. Be proactive instead of reactive. If mold is present, time can be your enemy.

Please call SERVPRO of W. Vancouver/Clark Co. @ (360) 695-4418

Protect Your Home From Wildfire

9/1/2017 (Permalink)

If your home or business is affected by smoke or fire damage call your local experts at SERVPRO of W. Vancouver & Clark Co. (360) 695-4418

Are you prepared if your home is at risk because of a wildfire? With many wildfires surrounding the Pacific Northwest this summer here are some helpful tips to reduce damage to your residence.

1. Maintain Defensible Space (0–5 feet)

Use noncombustible materials such as gravel, brick, or concrete in this critical area adjacent to your home.

2. Reduce Siding Risks

Maintain 6-inch ground-to-siding clearance, and consider noncombustible siding.

3. Clean Debris from Roof

Regularly remove debris from your roof, since debris can be ignited by wind-blown embers.

4. Use a Class A Roof Covering

Class A fire-rated roofing products offer the best protection for homes.

5. Clean Out Gutters Regularly

Keep debris out of gutters since debris can be ignited by wind-blown embers. If used, gutter covers should be noncombustible.

6. Reduce Fence Risks

Burning fencing can generate embers and cause direct flame contact to your home. Use noncombustible fences and gates.

7. Keep Embers out of Eaves and Vents

Use 1/8-inch mesh to cover vents, and box-in open eaves to create a soffited eave.

8. Protect Windows

Use multi-pane, tempered glass windows, and close them when a wildfire threatens.

9. Reduce Deck Risks

At a minimum, use deck boards that comply with California requirements for new construction in wildfire-prone areas, remove combustibles under deck, and maintain effective defensible space.

10. Maintain Defensible Space (5–30 feet)

Remove shrubs under trees, prune branches that overhang your roof, thin trees, and remove dead vegetation. Move trailers/RVs and storage sheds from area, or build defensible space around these items.

The information found in this article was provided by the Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety.

Home Vacation Preparation Checklist

8/2/2017 (Permalink)

If you come home to water or fire damage pick up the phone and call SERVPRO of West Vancouver / Clark Co. @ (360) 695-4418

Your vacation should be relaxing and worry-free. That’s why it’s a good idea to prepare your home before you leave on any long trip. Then, any problems on the home front are just one less thing to worry about. 

Make your house look lived-in

An empty house is like an open invitation to burglars. To keep your house looking occupied:

  • Stop the newspaper and mail – or ask a trusted neighbor to pick them up 
  • Park your car inside the garage, if you have one
  • Ask a neighbor to park in your driveway occasionally so there’s activity at your house 
  • Put at least one light in your house on a timer
  • Install a motion-activated sensor on an outdoor floodlight. (Burglars hate outdoor lighting – and that’s why we love it)
  • Make sure your lawn stays trimmed

Take the necessary plumbing and electrical precautions

Running appliances while you’re away is not only a needless expense, it could also lead to costly problems. To avoid the possibility of an appliance breakdown while you're away:

  • Unplug small appliances and electronic devices
  • Put the water heater in “vacation” mode
  • Turn off water valves to the dishwasher, washing machine and all sinks 
  • Set your thermostat to a temperature closer to outside temps (warmer in the summer, cooler in the winter) but which still protects your plants, pets and furniture 

General home preparation

Other things to consider doing before your vacation:

  • Notify your credit card company and home security company that you’ll be out of town  
  • Make sure your smoke detectors are working properly 
  • Leave your emergency contact information with a neighbor 
  • Dispose of any food that could go bad before you return from vacation 
  • Take out the kitchen trash – especially anything that might start to stink 
  • Run your garbage disposal with a half-cup of vinegar and some water 

Following this home preparation checklist before you leave for your vacation could save you a headache later. If you come home to water or fire damage pick up the phone and call SERVPRO of West Vancouver / Clark Co. @ (360) 695-4418

This article is compliments of Nationwide Insurance and be found here.

Recommended Firework Safety Tips

7/3/2017 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of W. Vancouver / Clark Co. is here to help 24/7 365 days a year @ (360) 695-4418

With July 4th approaching soon this is a perfect time to review some of the basic tips for handling fireworks to prevent injury or damage to yours, or other's property. These tips are provided by The National Council On Firework Safety.

  • Obey all local laws regarding the use of fireworks.
  • Know your fireworks; read the cautionary labels and performance descriptions before igniting.
  • A responsible adult SHOULD supervise all firework activities.  Never give fireworks to children.
  • Alcohol and fireworks do not mix.  Save your alcohol for after the show.
  • Wear safety glasses when shooting fireworks.
  • Light one firework at a time and then quickly move away.
  • Use fireworks OUTDOORS in a clear area; away from buildings and vehicles.
  • Never relight a “dud” firework.  Wait 20 minutes and then soak it in a bucket of water.
  • Always have a bucket of water and charged water hose nearby.
  • Never carry fireworks in your POCKET or shoot them into METAL or GLASS containers.
  • Do not experiment with homemade fireworks.
  • Dispose of spent fireworks by wetting them down and place in a metal trash can away from any building or combustible materials until the next day.
  • FAA regulations PROHIBIT the possession and transportation of fireworks in your checked baggage or carry-on luggage.
  • Report illegal explosives, like M-80s and quarter sticks, to the fire or police department.

And let’s not forget the safety of our pets!

  • Don’t bring your pets to a fireworks display, even a small one.
  • If fireworks are being used near your home, put your pet in a safe, interior room to avoid exposure to the sound.
  • Make sure your pet has an identification tag, in case it runs off during a fireworks display.
  • Never shoot fireworks of any kind (consumer fireworks, sparklers, fountains, etc.) near pets.

We wish you a happy and SAFE 4th of July, and we definitely hope that you will not be in need of a restoration company this year. In the event that you experience any kind of water, smoke, or fire damage to your home or office all of us here at SERVPRO of W. Vancouver / Clark Co. are here to help 24/7 365 days a year @ (360) 695-4418

Why Hire Your Local SERVPRO Professionals

6/26/2017 (Permalink)

Please reach out to us with questions or concerns 24/7 365 days a year (360) 695-4418

Water damage can happen to your home or business when you least expect it. Sometimes it may be as a result of leakages that you have been ignoring, or it can be an aftermath of a fire or flooding. Therefore, it might find you when you are not prepared financially to hire external help. So the first thing that will come to your mind is how to fix the water damage on your own to save money. You can do a very good job at dealing with water damage in your home in some situations, but if the damage is too severe, you will need the input of well-trained SERVPRO professionals to fix it for you. Here are the reasons why hiring professionals to do the work is the most prudent thing to do;

Once on site, professionals can quickly determine what items have been severely ruined by water damage. They will begin by getting rid of any porous items that could have come into contact with water because they tend to absorb too much water which can act as breeding grounds for harmful microbes. These items include mattresses, particle board, box springs, and pillows.

SERVPRO professionals will also identify any pockets that are holding excess moisture and remove the water. They have special equipment that they can use to measure moisture in hidden areas such as beneath tiles and other materials that do not become wet easily. When they find the hidden pockets, they will expose them to air by taking out the tile or material above it. They will also clean all areas with moisture using methods such as pressure washing with strong detergents. They will also accelerate the process of drying to prevent mold growth or any harmful bacteria. If the SERVPRO professionals discover the presence of bacteria or mold in your house, they will use mechanical or chemical methods to eradicate it.

At SERVPRO of W. Vancouver / Clark Co., we have experienced professionals who can spot compromised areas in your house and do everything possible to restore it. They are IICRC certified through a recognized organization. 

Please reach out to us with questions or concerns 24/7 365 days a year (360) 695-4418

Why Hire SERVPRO For Smoke & Fire Damage?

6/26/2017 (Permalink)

Please call SERVPRO of E. Vancouver / Clark Co. 24/7 365 days a year! (360) 695-4418

After a fire, your house is left with lingering smoke that can be harmful to your health and property. The best thing to do in such a situation is to clean smoke immediately because if you ignore it, the smoke will cause massive damage on your property which will require more money to clean than if you had cleaned it soon enough. If the smoke is not cleaned as soon as possible, the items that will be mostly affected by smoke are drapes, carpets, upholstery and walls because they will become permanently discolored. Glass will become extremely etched, and metals will tarnish which will require replacement.

You might think that you can do a good job at cleaning smoke by yourself without any basic knowledge and skills on how to go about it but this can lead to you causing further damage on the items. The best thing to do will be to hire experienced SERVPRO professionals to do the cleaning and restore the home to the state it was in before the fire disaster struck.

One of the advantages of using SERVPRO experts to clean soot is that we have specialized tools which are crucial in eliminating smoke. These are tools such as extractors, rotary scrubbers, and wet cleaning tools. Another advantage is that we have a lot of experience in doing such work; therefore, we will know the right steps to take in cleaning your home and preventing further damage on your property.

Indeed, bringing in a SERVPRO professional on site will save you a lot of headaches and ensure that you get rid of smoke and fire damage efficiently. Please call SERVPRO of W. Vancouver / Clark Co. 24/7 365 days a year! (360) 695-4418

Storm Damage and Your Roof

6/26/2017 (Permalink)

During the Summer months is the perfect time to have the roof on your home or business checked out by a local roofer

Storm Damage To Your Roof

As Summer quickly approaches us, and the cold, wet, Winter weather is leaving us for a few months. Now is the perfect time to have the roof on your home or business checked out by a local roofer. Even when there was no hail or rain produced during a storm, your roof can sustain damage. Strong winds make stress points on your roof which, over time, can weaken and be compromised. Roofs are made to resist typical winds; however, they can be damaged incrementally over years of high winds and debris blown around by the wind. It is important to fix the initial damage and replace missing shingles quickly to stop any high fuel costs and water damage that inevitably result from a roof which is damaged.

The effect that the wind has over your Vancouver home’s roof is not uniform. Areas such as the perimeter and corners of your roof are susceptible to high wind pressures and storm damage, while the center could have fewer stresses. Most wind damage begins at the edge of the roof. Anywhere the material of the roof is just a bit loose, the wind gets under it and pushes it up, therefore giving the wind more to grab onto during the next storm, which makes a peeling effect. This type of damage can begin quite small, but keep growing over time through repeated exposure to the wind.

SERVPRO of W. Vancouver / Clark Co. can be counted on to help get home or business repaired when storm damage has ravished it. With our professional training and courteous, timely work, we can help to prevent further damage to your home from intruding water by covering damaged areas with tarps or plywood for temporary protection. We then focus on restoring water damage of the attic and other affected areas. Our technicians may be able to do the roof repairs, but we can always get help from one of our roofing contractor partners to rebuild your roof to code when needed.

Mold Damage can Signal Ongoing Water Leaks

6/26/2017 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of W. Vancouver / Clark Co. is available 24/7. You can call us at (360) 695-4418, and we respond quickly.

Mold Remediation and Water Fixes are Interrelated

Mold takes a while to grow, but visible signs of mold can seem to happen overnight, too. When you have found multi-colored circles on the ceiling or black streaks and patches on your walls, there can be no doubt that there is mold damage in other areas of your home. SERVPRO of W. Vancouver / Clark Co. can help locate other areas affected by mold before damage increases in severity.

Water, needed by mold and other fungi to grow, does not need to have outside sources when there is water dripping from a water line somewhere in your home. Mold only needs a tiny amount of water moisture to begin spreading through your home. Dormant spores spring to life with moisture. Technicians at SERVPRO of W. Vancouver / Clark Co. use moisture meters, infrared sensors, and other devices to detect where water sources are located. Then we repair any dripping lines, preventing any more moisture to accumulate. Mold remediation can begin once the sources have been eliminated.

Lines can leak anywhere, but joints are a common spot for this to happen. If there is a tiny hole or small crack in a line, water could be spraying the inside of your wall, which can allow water to seep into areas that may seem uncontaminated by mold damage because the mold growth is not visible.
Water loss in a home from dripping lines may cause other problems with secondary water damage besides mold, so SERVPRO of W. Vancouver / Clark Co. checks for signs of these, also. Repairing lines that leak can also decrease your water bill, in addition to protecting your home from mold damage. Fungi must have a water source for growth to take place, and spots, streaks, and patches signal not only mold damage, but the presence of water where it should not be. We can make it "Like it never even happened” and decrease the risk of any future mold growth at the same time. 
We know that mold damage can be a scary situation in your home, so SERVPRO of W. Vancouver / Clark Co. is available 24/7. You can call us at (360) 695-4418, and we respond quickly.

Summer Safety!

6/26/2017 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of W. Vancouver / Clark Co. Professionals wish you a safe and happy summer!

Celebrate Summer Safety 

Summer is a time to enjoy the great outdoors, but it is also important to keep safety in mind. Consider the following tips, provided by the National Fire Protection Association, to keep you and your family safe all summer long.

  • When using a charcoal grill, only use starter fluids designed for barbecue grills; do not add fluid after coals have been lit.
  • When using a gas grill, ensure  the hose connection is tight; check hoses for leaks. Applying soapy water to the hoses will easily and safely reveal any leaks.
  • When camping, always use a flame-retardant tent and set up camp far away from the campfire.
  • Always build a campfire downwind from the tent area. Clear vegetation and dig a pit before building your fire. Extinguish the fire before going to sleep or leaving the campsite.
  • Store liquid fire starter (not gasoline) away from your tent and campfire and only use dry kindling to freshen a campfire.

SERVPRO of W. Vancouver / Clark Co. Professionals wish you a safe and happy summer!

7 Little-Known Benefits of Renters Insurance

6/5/2017 (Permalink)

Contact a local insurance agent today to talk about adding renters insurance to your policy

Owning a home is still the American dream for many, but renting has benefits — you don’t have to pay for building upkeep, risk getting underwater on a mortgage or be stuck in one place for too long.

But you still need to think about financially protecting yourself and your stuff. Renters insurance is the way to do that.

With the U.S. homeownership rate at its lowest point in 51 years, more American households need renters insurance. Yet only 40% of renters have policies, versus 95% of homeowners who have home insurance, the Insurance Information Institute says.

Why buy renters insurance

Your landlord’s property insurance won’t help you if disaster strikes. It covers the structure, but not any of your things. Renters insurance covers your belongings from all the possible bad events that are listed in the policy, such as fire, smoke, water damage, windstorms, lightning, theft and vandalism.

Even if you don’t think your stuff is worth that much, renters insurance is a good idea. The cost of replacing just a basic wardrobe and only a few pieces of furniture adds up quickly.

Plus renters insurance covers more than your personal belongings at home. Here are seven other things a policy covers:


You don’t have to couch surf while your apartment is undergoing repair after a disaster like a fire. Renters insurance includes “additional living expenses” coverage if your place becomes uninhabitable after a disaster and you need to find somewhere else to live temporarily. The coverage would reimburse you for extra expenses, such as the cost to stay in a hotel or rent another apartment.


If a visitor is injured at your apartment, renters insurance would pay the medical bills up to the policy’s limit. A typical policy includes $1,000 to $5,000 worth of medical coverage, according to the Insurance Information Institute.


Renters insurance provides liability insurance to cover injuries or property damage you and your family members cause others. So if your kid breaks a neighbor’s rare antique vase, your policy could pay to replace it.


If someone gets injured in your apartment or you accidentally hurt somebody and are sued, the liability coverage on a renters policy would pay your legal costs and court awards, up to the policy’s limit. You choose the amount of liability insurance when you buy a renters policy. Limits usually start around $100,000.


Most renters insurance policies provide coverage if your dog bites someone, either at your home or off the property. Check the policy, though. Occasionally insurers exclude or limit coverage for dogs.


A renters insurance policy covers things “in your possession,” the Insurance Information Institute says. That means property you own or that you borrowed or rented.


Your things are covered away from home, too, for the perils listed on the policy. So you’re covered if a thief steals stuff out of your car or swipes your luggage from a hotel room. This “off-premises” coverage is usually limited to a portion of your total coverage for personal belongings, such as 10%.

Defending Against Mold Growth

5/30/2017 (Permalink)

Are you experiencing water or mold damage? Contact SERVPRO of W. Vancouver & Clark Co. today! (360) 695-4418

When you experience a mold problem, prompt mitigation is vital to avoid mold growth which can be visible in as little as 24 to 48 hours under certain conditions. We have put together a list of procedures that will help prevent and defend against mold growth.

  • Keep the humidity between 30 to 60 percent.
  • Provide for proper drainage away from building foundations.
  • Regularly inspect plumbing and appliances for leaks.
  • Keep gutters and drains clear of debris.
  • Inspect the roof, windows and other areas where water might enter the building, and perform necessary maintenance.
  • Respond to all water intrusions immediately.
  • Contact SERVPRO of W. Vancouver & Clark Co. for professional assistance after water damage or if you discover mold.

Are you experiencing water or mold damage? Contact SERVPRO of W. Vancouver & Clark Co. today! (360) 695-4418

Being Prepared With The Red Cross

5/30/2017 (Permalink)

For questions about being prepared in case of an emergency, contact The American Red Cross Cascades Region @ 503-284-1234

Are you prepared for an emergency? What will you do if you have to evacuate your home during a fire or a flood? What if you are unable to return home after an earthquake? Do you have important items gathered into an emergency preparedness kit? How will you communicate and reconnect with your family, friends and people in your life after a disaster?

There are simple steps you, your family and your community can take to ensure you are prepared for any type of disaster. The Red Cross is here to help.

Preparedness Tool Kit

The Red Cross has many tools to help keep you and your loved ones safe. From detailed information about how to plan for specific events, or more general information about preparedness, you can find it here.

Red Cross Apps

The Red Cross offers several mobile apps that put life-saving information at your fingertips. Free apps include the First Aid, Hurricane, Shelter Finder, Earthquake and Wildfire App. Each app provides instant expert advice for everyday emergencies and is available for iPhone and Android devices.

Prepare Your Workplace

Learn how to prepare your workplace for a disaster and ensure employees have the tools to help co-workers who may need immediate, emergency care. Take a free AED class at the Oregon Red Cross or join the American Red Cross Ready Rating™ program.

Schedule a Red Cross Presentation

Are you interested in making sure your family, school, co-workers and community are prepared? Attend a free class or schedule a presentation to get your community prepared before disaster strikes.

Commercial Services

5/30/2017 (Permalink)

Have Questions? Call Today – (360) 695-4418

Your commercial property’s appearance speaks volumes to your clients. So when the need arises for professional cleaning or emergency restoration services, SERVPRO of W. Vancouver / Clark Co. has the training and expertise to help make it “Like it never even happened.”

Commercial Building Restoration Services

SERVPRO of W. Vancouver / Clark Co. responds quickly to your Vancouver fire, water, or mold damage emergency, 24 hours a day. Whether the damage occurs in a small business building or a big box store, we have the training, experience, and equipment to handle the situation. Our national network of 1,700 Franchises gives us access to personnel and resources to respond to any size restoration emergency. Learn more about our commercial restoration services:

Commercial Building Cleaning Services

SERVPRO of W. Vancouver / Clark Co. offers professional cleaning and preventative maintenance for your carpet and upholstery that keeps your property looking its best. Our cleaning system offers a number of specialized cleaning options to match your needs. Whether your business needs a deep cleaning or a persistent odor removed, you can trust SERVPRO of W. Vancouver / Clark Co.. Learn more about our commercial cleaning services:

SERVPRO's Disaster Recovery Team

5/30/2017 (Permalink)

Should a storm or major event strike, call (360) 695-4418

No Job Is Too Large

The SERVPRO Commercial Large Loss Division is composed of our best of the best in restoration. Our elite large-loss specialists are prequalified and strategically positioned throughout the United States to handle any size disaster.

Every large loss is supervised by a commercial operations manager to help ensure seamless communication and timely mitigation.

At SERVPRO, the difference is our ability to dispatch trained production professionals and cut costs through the strategic placement and oversight of temporary labor. Get the professionals, call SERVPRO.

Clients for the Commercial Large Loss program include the following:

  • The Hospitality Industry
  • Property Managers
  • Universities
  • Municipalities
  • The Pentagon

Catastrophic Storm and Major Event Response

The SERVPRO Disaster Recovery Team can provide help whether you're dealing with a tornado, hurricane, blizzard or flood. The SERVPRO System has a network of strategically positioned storm teams on standby should a disaster strike near you. Available 24 hours a day and 365 days a year, we are prepared for the unpredictable.

With the ability to mobilize local command centers, along with the resources of more than 1,700 Franchises nationwide, no disaster is too big. Recent mobilizations of the Catastrophic Storm Response Teams include:

  • 2014 Polar Vortex
  • 2012 Sandy
  • 2010 Nashville floods
  • 2008 Ike
  • 2007 Chicago floods
  • 2007 Ohio floods
  • 2007 California wildfires
  • 2005 Katrina/Wilma/Rita

Understanding Water Classifications

5/30/2017 (Permalink)

Sewage backup should be considered an emergency and dealt with as quickly as possible. Call us today @ (360) 695-4418

The Three Types of Contaminated water

 There are three major types of contaminated water. SERVPRO of W. Vancouver / Clark Co. will inspect that contaminated water to determine the type of water and then plan the appropriate response to safely restore your home or business:

Category 1: "Clean Water"

This is water from a clean source, such as a broken clean water supply line or faucet. If left untreated, category 1 water can quickly degrade into category 2 or 3 water depending upon such factors as time, temperature, and contact with contaminants.

  • Water from a clean source like a broken water line
  • If left untreated, can degrade into category 2 or 3

Category 2: "Gray Water"

This water has a significant level of contamination that could cause discomfort or illness if ingested. Sources for category 2 water may include washing machine overflow; toilet overflow with some urine, but no feces; or dishwasher overflow.

  • May contain bacteria and viruses
  • Can quickly degrade into category 3 if left untreated

Category 3: "Black Water"

This water is grossly unsanitary and could cause severe illness or death if ingested, and any contact should be avoided. Sources for category 3 water could include flooding from rivers or streams, water from beyond the toilet trap, water from the toilet bowl with feces, or standing water that has begun to support microbial growth.

  • May contain untreated sewage, harsh chemicals, and microbes
  • Water from flooding rivers or sewer backup

“Mold Removal” vs. Mold Remediation

5/30/2017 (Permalink)

Signs of Mold? Call Today – (360) 695-4418

What’s the Difference?

Since microscopic mold spores exist naturally almost everywhere, indoors and outdoors, removing all mold from a home or business is impossible. Many restoration businesses advertise “mold removal” and even guarantee to remove all mold. This is a fallacy. We understand mold and mold growth. SERVPRO of W. Vancouver / Clark Co. has the training and expertise to remediate the mold in your home or business.

Understanding Mold

When water intrudes into your property, mold growth can start in as little as 48 hours. Consider the following mold facts:

  • Mold is present almost everywhere, indoors and outdoors.
  • Mold spores are microscopic, float along in the air, and may enter your home through windows, doors, or AC/heating systems or even hitch a ride indoors on your clothing or a pet.
  • Mold spores thrive on moisture. Mold spores can quickly grow into colonies when exposed to water. These colonies may produce allergens and irritants.
  • Before mold remediation can begin, any sources of water or moisture must be addressed. Otherwise, the mold may return.
  • Mold often produces a strong, musty odor, and that odor can lead you to possible mold problem areas.
  • Even higher-than-normal indoor humidity can support mold growth. Keep indoor humidity below 45 percent.

The Mold Remediation Process

Every mold damage scenario is different and requires a unique solution, but the general mold remediation process stays the same. Learn more about our mold remediation process.

  1. Emergency Contact - (360) 695-4418
  2. Inspection and Mold Damage Assessment
  3. Mold Containment
  4. Air Filtration
  5. Removing Mold and Mold-Infested Materials
  6. Cleaning Contents and Belongings

How to Prevent Mold

4/27/2017 (Permalink)

For questions or to schedule an inspection call SERVPRO of W. Vancouver Clark Co. @ (360) 695-4418

The main things mold needs to grow in a home are organic materials to feed on and moisture. In houses there are always plenty of organic materials for mold to live on such as wood, drywall and various other building materials.

Moisture, on the other hand, can be controlled practically and so keeping the moisture in your home low is the best way to prevent mold growth.

Prevent Mold by Preventing Moisture

Most molds need 24-48 hours of moisture to begin to grow. Therefore if a suitable material in your home is wet for more than 24 hours then you run the risk of mold starting to grow.

Prevent Mold by Preventing Water Leaks

There are a few main things which usually cause moisture problems in the home. One is water leaks. These include things such as leaking roofs or walls, leaking pipes and leaking taps or a leaking shower.

If you know of any leaks in your home you should fix them without delay. You might need to inspect your home to find any water leaks you didn't know about.

Prevent Mold by Preventing Condensation

Condensation is another frequent cause of moisture. Condensation forms on cold surfaces when water vapor in the air cools and becomes liquid. Often you'll see condensation on metal pipes, concrete walls, water tanks and windows.

One way to reduce condensation is to keep the temperature warmer in rooms. For example, by installing insulation. You can also insulate the surfaces themselves such as putting coverings over metal pipes. You'll also have less condensation occurring if you keep the humidity in your home low.

Prevent Mold by Reducing Humidity

Many species of mold can begin to grow from humidity alone if the humidity stays high for long enough. In fact the humidity only needs to be higher than 55% before some molds can begin to grow.

The best way to keep humidity low in your home is through ventilation. Open the windows during the day, especially when it's hot since this is when humidity is usually the lowest outside. Close your windows when it's raining outside though.

It's especially important to ventilate the rooms where steam and moisture builds up, like the kitchen and bathroom. Exhaust fans help to reduce the humidity when doing things like cooking or washing dishes.

Air conditioners can also reduce household humidity, as can using dehumidifiers in your home.

For questions or to schedule an inspection call SERVPRO of W. Vancouver Clark Co. @ (360) 695-4418

Commercial Emergency Ready Plan

4/21/2017 (Permalink)

With SERVPRO on your side you can protect you business from everyday dangers. We have a 24/7 Emergency Response team to be there when it matters most.

The SERVPRO Emergency READY Profile Advantage

As many as 50% of businesses close down following a disaster, according to the latest research. Of the businesses that survive, the overwhelming majority of them had a preparedness plan in place. Pre-planning can serve as an insurance policy aimed at peace of mind. And knowing you are "Ready for whatever happens" speaks trust to your clients and employees that in the event your business is affected by a disaster, they don’t necessarily have to be.

By developing a SERVPRO Emergency READY Profile for your business, you minimize business interruption by having an immediate plan of action. Knowing what to do and what to expect in advance is the key to timely mitigation and can help minimize how water and fire damage can affect your business.

- A no cost assessment of your facility.
This means there is no need to allocate funds, giving you a great value at no cost.

A concise Profile Document that contains only the critical information needed in the event of an emergency.
It will only take a little time to complete and will not take you away from current projects. But it will save a lot of time if ever needed.

A guide to help you get back into your building following a disaster.
This can help minimize the amount of time your business is inactive by having an immediate plan of action.

Establishes your local SERVPRO Franchise Professional as your disaster mitigation and restoration provider.
You have a provider that is recognized as an industry leader and close by.

Identification of the line of command for authorizing work to begin.
This saves time so we can begin the work of mitigating the damage which can save you time and money.

Provides facility details such as shut-off valve locations, priority areas and priority contact information.
Having a quick reference of what to do, how to do it and who to call provides solutions in advance of an emergency so that during the emergency you are "Ready for whatever happens."

Contact us today to schedule this complimentary service and protect your business! 

(360) 254-0049


Resolve to be Ready in 2017

2/20/2017 (Permalink)

The SERVPRO® Ready Plan is a tool for property managers and owners, both residential and commercial.

Now is the perfect time to think about making some resolutions. While resolutions typically involve committing to personal changes and reaching goals, the single most important resolution both business and home owners can make for 2017 is to "Resolve to be Ready." 

Preparing in advance to deal with the unexpected can make a world of difference in how quickly and completely property owners can put the pieces of their lives back together. Emergency readiness plans are the foundation for effective and timely emergency response.

We encourages all property owners to take advantage of the no-cost emergency planning tools available from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), as well as SERVPRO' s Emergency READY Profile and READY Plan Mobile App (http://ready.SERVPRO.com).

For homeowners:

  • FEMA resources include guidelines for a creating a Family Emergency Plan and Emergency Supply List, with additional tips for pet owners, seniors, people with disabilities, and even

  • SERVPRO offers a free SERVPRO READY Plan app, which stores critical contact and property information electronically in advance, where it can be accessed with a mobile device in seconds if disaster strikes.

For business owners:

  • FEMA offers materials on topics ranging from creating a Business Continuity Plan to an Insurance Discussion Coverage Form in addition to guidelines for creating an Emergency Response Plan.

  • For businesses, SERVPRO offers a no-cost facility assessment and assistance in creating a comprehensive Emergency READY Profile® (ERP). The ERP includes information about emergency contact numbers, priority and high/risk areas, shut-off valve locations and more that can then be stored in the READY app.

    The time to gather and store information like emergency contact numbers; insurance contacts; location of fuse boxes; fire suppression system controls, and such is before an emergency strikes, not during an emergency. Having this information at your fingertips can help emergency responders react as quickly and effectively as possible, helping to limit loss of property and even lives.

    SERVPRO of  W. Vancouver/Clark Co. specializes in disaster restoration, cleanup and repair services, helping to remediate damage, making it "Like it never even happened," for both commercial and residential customers. For more information on SERVPRO of W. Vancouver/Clark Co., please contact Shelly Kroll at (360) 245-0049 or SERVPROMarketing@comcast.net. For more information on the SERVPRO mobile app and the SERVPRO Emergency READY Program, please visit www.ready.SERVPRO.com.

    About SERVPRO®

    Founded in 1967, the SERVPRO® Franchise System is a leader and provider of fire, water cleanup, restoration services, mold mitigation, and remediation. SERVPRO's professional services network of more than 1,700 individually owned and operated Franchises responds to property damage emergencies ranging from small individual disasters to multi-million dollar large-loss events. Providing coverage in the United States and Canada, the SERVPRO® System has established relationships with major insurance companies and commercial clients, as well as individual homeowners.

Home Fire Facts

1/9/2017 (Permalink)


SERVPRO: Proud National Sponsor of American Red Cross ready Rating Program.

Home Fires, america's Biggest Disaster Threat.

* Nearly 47,000 fires occur during the winter holidays claiming more than 500 lives, causing more than 2, 200 injuries, and $554 million in property damage. **

* On average, one of every 22 home fires started by Christmas trees result in death. **

*Candle fires are four times as likely to occur during the winter holidays. **

* During the winter holiday season an average of 40 home fires per day are caused by children playing. **

* The number of home fires the American Red Cross has responded to has risen 10% since 2000. *

* Having a working smoke alarm reduces one's chances of dying in a fire by nearly half. ** 

Sources: American Red Cross, *  U.S. Fire Administration ,** and the National Fire Protection Association .*** 

For further questions or help with fire clean-up needs, please contact SERVPRO of W. Vancouver/Clark Co. 360-254-0049


Red Cross in Dire Need of Platelet Donations

10/18/2016 (Permalink)

The American Red Cross Emergency Response Vehicle (ERV)

The American Red Cross has an emergency need for eligible donors to make an appointment now to give platelets to ensure critical patient needs are met. Platelets , the clotting portion of blood primarily given to cancer patients during treatment, must be transfused within five days of donation and, therefore, are always ib great demand. Seasonal colds and flu are currently preventing many regular donors from giving, and the devastating impact of Hurricane Matthew has disrupted donations in many locations in the Southeast. More than 95 blood drives have been forced to cancel resulting in nearly 3,000 uncollected blood and platelet donations. While there is an emergency need for platelets, donors can also help by giving blood as there is an urgent need for all types. For more information and to schedule an appointment, download the American Red Cross Donor App, visit www.redcrossblood.org/giveplatelets, or call 1-800-REDCROSS (1-800-733-2767)


Thank You to the American Red Cross for the above request and information. 


SERVPRO of W. Vancouver/Clark Co. 360-254-0049

September National Preparedness Month

9/6/2016 (Permalink)

September is National Preparedness Month which means that public safety agencies are busy working on a number of events that their communities are educated, informed and ready to face any type of crisis situation. This year's national theme is "Don't Wait. Communicate. Make Your Emergency Plan Today." CRESA will help the community take action with its online social media game, 30 Days, 30 Ways Preparedness Challenge. 

Players are given a daily challenge at 7 a.m. each morning. Players may submit replies to each of the tasks involved throughout the month to Facebook, Twitter, commenting on the 30 Days Blog or by email. Participants can choose to play as many days as they like, and may also catch up and complete past tasks if they miss a day. All tasks will be short and will not require a significant amount of time to complete.

Thanks to generous sponsors, winners will be selected and rewarded with gift cards to Amazon in October. Submissions will be reviewed for their creativity, relativity to the task and its evident popularity online. This game sparks great conversations and is a wonderful platform for neighborhoods, scouts, schools and workplaces. 

Thank you CRESA for sponsoring this event. 

Questions, call SERVPRO of E.&W. Vancouver/Clark Co. @ 360-254-0049


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