Recent Why SERVPRO Posts

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.

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.

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.

Respirators

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.

Coveralls

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

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.

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