SERVPRO: Helping Your Clients Rebuild
Storm damage in Lemay, MO
If you have clients in the Lemay, MO, area who are dealing with storm or flood damage, a storm restoration specialist can help, especially one as qualified as SERVPRO. Many of your clients may require restoration services following a disaster, and it is important to deal with a company that delivers not only on quick response times but also corporate assistance with the claims process. However, response time and claims assistance are only a fraction of the services provided.
Fundamental storm response must include mitigation practices to ensure that your client’s claim is not hung up on a technicality. Through board up, fencing and tarping services, your client’s property is protected from worsening existing damage as well as trespassers, animals and weather, ensuring a successful claim.
Before storm restoration and loss assessments can begin, it is necessary to clean out the home, ensuring that all damage is visible and known. It is not enough to remove excess water from flooding; debris must be removed and separated into actual rubbish and damaged insured items so that loss can be documented properly.
Once proof of loss has been documented and all assessments and estimates approved, then it is time to move forward with the restoration work. This work may be extensive, requiring demolition and reconstruction, but in the end, your clients can return to their repaired home.
4. Claims Information Center
Beyond the services offered to your client, it is essential that you have access to the progress of the work and the claim. For you to understand fully the work being proposed, you can access the Claims Information Center and review similar claims as well as the progress on your own.
Storm restoration is a necessary solution to the misfortune severe weather can bring, and while it is your job as an insurance agent to help your clients rebuild through funding, it is the job of restoration companies, like SERVPRO, to restore the physical structure and help make the claims process as speedy as possible.
3 Tips for Flood-Proofing Your Business
Water removal in Melhville, MO
3 Tips for Flood-Proofing Your Business
The damage that can occur to your business from flooding is no small matter. In fact, the National Flood Insurance Program claims that approximately 25 percent of businesses that have to close after a flood occurs never reopen their doors. For this reason, it is important you take measures to protect your company’s building against flooding if there is any risk of a storm or flood in Mehlville, MO. While a water damage cleanup company can help restore your building to its original condition, it is important you are proactive in protecting your building and reducing costs ahead of time. Here are three useful tips for reducing flood damage to your business’ building.
1. Install a Sump Pump
Sump pumps are useful for small floods or areas of your building, like basements, that frequently experience flooding. They even make models with a backup battery in case storm damage causes the power to go out. They allow water to flow through the building and provides an outlet for it instead of allowing water to pool around the building and cause immense pressure.
2. Store All Important Items High Up
If you are in areas where flooding occurs often or have heard a flood might be on its way, make sure all important documents and electronics are on the top floor or at least raise them 18 inches off the ground. You can install shelves ahead of time to make this easier. The worse flood damage occurs to lower floors and basements.
3. Invest in Flood-Resistant Materials
For frequent floods, you should use flood-resistant materials that can handle being in contact with water for up to three days. If it is too costly to use these materials everywhere, at least make sure the bottom floor and basement uses them.
Flood damage can ruin your company’s building and put you in a bad spot financially. Make sure you are prepared for the worst by trying out these flood-proofing techniques!
Make an Escape Plan: Two Ways for Every Room
You need a fire escape plan.
You should make sure your family knows two ways to escape every room in the event of a fire in your home in Oakville, MO. While you are making a fire escape plan, here are three important steps to include:
1. Make a plan that includes two ways to escape each room.
2. Practice your plan and go over some safety tips.
3. Designate a meet-up location and communication plan.
In the case of a house fire, you and your family only have two minutes to get out. Your family’s best chance of survival is making a fire escape plan and practicing that plan.
Safety Tips for the Escape
Your family needs two escape routes for every room because one path may be blocked by fire. Teach everyone to feel doors before opening them. If a door is hot, it’s time to use the second escape path.
Tell your family that they’ll need to stay low, crawling quickly, to avoid heat and smoke. If someone is trapped in an upper-level room, teach that the window can be opened for breathing and used to send visual signals of their location. A flashlight or bright fabric in the window can let firefighters know where they are.
Your emergency escape plan should designate a meeting location. This location should be away from the house but within good visual sight so firefighters can see that everyone is out safely. You should also designate a method of communication that lets family members know you are safe. This could include the use of social media or designating a personal contact to call.
Don’t worry about your home, it can be cleaned, restored and rebuilt with the help of professional fire restoration specialists. Focus your energy on this important preparation, a fire escape plan that will give your family the tools they need to escape a fire.
Steps To Avoid Common Types of Mold Growth in Your Home
Mold damage in a Lemay, MO bathroom
Ways To Prevent Mold from Growing in Your Home
Unfortunately, mold growth is a common problem that occurs in homes in Lemay, MO. There are several types of mold that are more likely to grow in homes, but there are also ways you can help to prevent these molds from growing in your home.
1. Watch Your Water Bill
Mold often grows when there has been some sort of water damage in the home. However, many homeowners don’t realize that their home has been affected by a flood or leak until major damage has occurred. However, a sudden increase in your water usage could be an indicator of a leak, and the sooner you can identify an issue, the sooner you can fix the problem. By preventing any major leaks or floods, you will be better able to prevent molds like Chaetomium, which can grow in drywall and other areas, from growing.
2. Limit Humidity in the Home
High humidity levels are often one of the primary reasons for mold growth in homes. Keeping your home dry can help to prevent molds such as Trichoderma, which tend to grow in humid environments. In order to keep the humidity levels low, you can use fans, dehumidifiers and can open windows in your home.
3. Check Areas Where Mold Tends to Grow
One of the best ways to prevent mold from growing in your home is to know where it is most likely to grow. Appliances that use water, such as sinks, toilets or dishwashers, can create the perfect environment for mold to thrive. Making sure these areas are clean and dry will help to prevent common molds, such as Alternaria, which often grows in bathrooms or basements.
Keeping track of your water bill, decreasing humidity in your home and checking and cleaning areas where mold is most likely to grow can help you to protect your home from mold growth. If your home has sustained mold damage, it may help to contact mold remediation specialists.
3 Steps to Take After a Fire on Commercial Property
Boarding up after fire in Oakville, MO
3 Steps to Consider When Beginning Your Fire Cleanup
If your business in Oakville, MO, has suffered from fire damage you may be wondering what to do next. There are a few recommended actions that may help get the restoration process started. Here are some steps to consider when beginning your fire cleanup.
1. Board Up the Property
One of the first steps many experts recommend is to board up the damaged property. This usually entails putting ply-board or tarps over the exterior of the damaged area in order to protect it from external forces. Not only can this help prevent further damage from wind and rain, but it may keep critters out of your property. It may also help discourage looting. Many insurance companies also require boarding up the area as part of your policy when filing a claim.
2. Get a Damage Assessment
Before repairs can begin, the fire damage on the property will need to be assessed. A team of fire restoration professionals can look over the damages and inform you what repairs will be necessary. These professionals can also formulate a plan for the best order of repair, and provide you or your insurance company with a repair cost estimate.
3. Begin Repairs
Once your property is protected against further damage, and you have an estimate of the repair needs, then you can begin the fire cleanup process. Repairs usually include debris removal, smoke odor remediation, and the cleaning of damaged items and equipment. Some companies may also offer electronics cleaning, document restoration and upholstery cleaning.
After fire damage hits your business these steps may help you get on track with your restoration. Boarding over the damaged area can help prevent the need for additional repairs. A damage assessment can help you understand what needs to be done and the best order. After your assessment you can begin the process of restoring your commercial property.
6 Steps To Follow After Unwanted Water Has Entered Your Home
Water pipe ruptured in between the walls of a Melhville, MO house
Damage Can be Minimized by Following These Six Steps
Water damage to your home in Melhville, MO, is never a welcome occurrence. Whether from broken pipes, toilet overflow or storm flooding, it’s important to act quickly when your home has unwanted water present. Damage can be minimized by following these six steps to assess and remedy the situation.
1. Identify the Source
Locate the source of the intruding water and stop the flow, if possible. If it’s coming from a burst pipe, plumbing fixture, or appliance, shut off the source. You may be able to do this locally, such as closing the valves under a sink or at the base of a toilet, or you may need to shut off your home’s main water supply. If you can’t identify the source, it is recommended to seek professional help immediately.
2. Shut Off Power
Staying safe is imperative when evaluating water damage. Water and electricity are a dangerous combination. Unplug electronics and turn off power to the home if there is pooling moisture present.
3. Begin Water Cleanup
Get rid of standing water by any means available. If there is a safe power source, a shop vacuum can quickly remove any liquid. A sump pump is useful if there is a large volume of standing water in a basement. Buckets can be utilized for bailing water when electricity is not accessible. Use mops and towels to soak up remaining moisture. Remove saturated items such as area rugs and upholstered furniture.
4. Start Drying
Utilize fans to circulate air. Open windows and doors if weather conditions allow. If large areas are impacted, a dehumidifier can help speed up drying.
5. Dispose of Damaged Property
If they have gotten wet, some items cannot be salvaged. Responsibly get rid of permanently damaged property.
6. Clean and Disinfect
Many sources of water such as toilets, sewers and flooding following severe weather are teeming with harmful bacteria. Carefully clean and disinfect all affected property once it is completely dry.
The key to working with water damage is acting quickly. By removing all water, completely drying, cleaning and disinfecting all items and surfaces involved, you have a better chance of minimizing losses.
How Often Should You Replace Bathroom Supply Lines?
You decide stainless steel supply lines vs PVC supply line
Bathroom supply lines are available in solid and flexible materials. The longevity of a supply line depends on the material and installation. Find out more about different types of lines and common causes of supply line damage.
Supply Line Materials
The material and texture of a supply line will affect how long it is likely to last. Solid supply lines can last for decades, whereas flexible lines are less durable and more affordable to replace. Choose from the following materials:
- Braided stainless steel
- Chromed copper
- Flexible Copper
Solid copper lines are much more expensive than solid CPVC lines or flexible materials. In general, solid lines are desirable for long runs, and flexible lines are better suited for short runs.
Supply Line Warranties
The warranty on a supply line depends on the material and manufacturer, and can range from five years to a lifetime. This includes:
- Copper lines that can last for decades and may have lifetime warranties
- Plastic lines with 5- to 8-year warranties
- Steel braided lines with warranties from 5 years up to a lifetime
Factor in the warranty on any type of line you choose to install. This can provide protection against a premature supply line leak.
Supply Line Damage
Supply lines may break or succumb to a particular type of damage due to the line material. Several common types of damage involving lines and fittings include:
- Corroded braided metal hoses
- Separated brass barbed fittings due to stress corrosion
- Broken plastic coupling nuts
- Burst supply lines
All of these types of damage can cause a bathroom leak and Category One water damage. Replace the line and connections, and contact water damage restoration specialists.
Replace lines if you experience a pipe burst or other supply line damage. Depending on the material, a homeowner may want to complete this replacement or hire a plumber in Oakville, MO.
What Should You Throw Away After a Fire?
Fire restoration on an Oakville, MO home
Items to Throw Away After a House Fire
Exposure to heat and smoke can ruin delicate or perishable contents. While some items can be cleaned and restored, others should be disposed of and replaced. Here are five items to throw away after a house fire in Mehlville, MO.
Open food packages may become contaminated by smoke, ash, soot, or fire suppressants. It is important to get rid of:
- Open packages or containers
- Open pet food
- Cans exposed to extreme heat
Canned or packaged food that was not exposed to high heat may be safe to consume. Remove the label, clean the can, and write the contents and expiration date on the can in permanent marker.
2. Porous Kitchen Contents
Not only food items pose a re-contamination risk. It is also important to dispose of:
- Plastic cutting boards
- Plastic dishes, cups, or utensils
- Baby bottle nipples
Plastic is porous and may absorb toxins. Throw away and replace these items after a fire.
High heat and smoke can ruin medicine. Examine each product and consider:
- The safe temperature range
- Whether the packaging is open
- Any visible damage
It is safer to dispose of and replace medicine after a fire. Extremely high temperatures may make any formula less effective.
Heat can also destabilize beauty and personal care products. Continued use can result in:
- Absorption of toxins through skin
You should dispose of and replace products exposed to smoke or high temperatures. Throwing these items out is safer than risking re-contamination.
5. Burned Clothing
Clothing damaged by smoke or soot may be restored. Burned clothing should be thrown away. This is particularly the case for:
- Charred or singed items
- Babies' or children's clothing
- Burnt linens
If you are not sure whether clothing can be cleaned, consult with a restoration professional. You should dispose of items with extensive damage.
All of these contents may pose re-contamination risks. If you are not sure whether to throw away or attempt to clean an item, ask fire damage restoration experts in Mehlville, MO.
Accidental Fire Sprinkler Discharge
Hotel conference water problem due to fire-suppressant sprinkler system in Lemay, MO
Accidental Fire Sprinkler Discharge
In 20 minutes, a single fire sprinkler can spray hundreds of gallons of water onto a fire or just onto your most important documents and equipment, flooding the office. It’s certainly not action movie common in Lemay, MO, but overhead sprinklers do get discharged when fire is not involved. If it happens to you, take these steps:
1. Turn Off the Water Fast
This seems simple, but it may require planning. First, if you are the responsible party working at a property, you need to know where the water shut off is. That is information you should find out ahead of time, especially if you or others working on the property are working near the sprinklers or carrying items that could hit a sprinkler.
Secondly, if you have employees working at your property, they need two things: an emergency plan that includes detection of accidentally discharged fire sprinklers and knowledge of the location of the water shut off valve. This is particularly important if you are not regularly onsite. If your employees wait for the fire department to handle the sprinklers, the flooding could be extensive.
2. Call Your Insurance Company
It may be tempting to wander into the wetness and start deciding what’s what, but it will probably save time in the long run if you let your insurance company make decisions and follow its directions. It'll most likely want to investigate the situation without any extra considerations. If there is something you want to do before someone from your insurance company arrives, just check with your insurer ahead of time.
3. Hire Restoration Services
You should have approval from your insurance company before you choose a water damage restoration company. A quality restoration job will put your property back together like the water damage never happened.
The accidental discharge of a fire sprinkler can cause devastating levels of damage. However, the faster the sprinkler gets turned off, the less flooding and other damage there will be. Following the directions that your insurance company gives you will help you get back in business in a dry and restored office.
Oakville Commercial Water Damage Categories
Gray Water Surrounding a Damaged Building??
Contaminated Water and Its Category Determines Remediation Process
When looking at the kinds of water damage in Oakville and how they can affect a water removal situation for your commercial property, it is good to know that water losses such as damages to inventory or loss of important files and documents are put into three different categories – clean water, gray water or black water. After these categories are determined, it is much easier to figure out the right techniques for drying, and help to designate what items can be saved and which ones cannot.
Clean Water: Category 1
This type of water is from a source which doesn’t pose a substantial harm to people. It could include sink overflows without contaminates, broken water supply lines, melting snow, appliance malfunctions that involve water supply lines, broken toilet tanks, falling rainwater, and toilet bowls which don’t have additives and contaminants. If it is left for 72 hours untreated, Category 1 turns into Category 2. This will further enforce the fact that a key factor when dealing with different kinds of Oakville water damage is your reaction time.
Gray Water: Category 2
Gray water has a large amount of contamination in it. If someone were to consume this water, it could potentially cause illness or discomfort. Water from Category 2 carries microorganisms and nutrients for the microorganisms. Sources of this water could include washing machines or toilet bowls, overflows from dishwashers, seepage from hydrostatic pressure, sump-pump failures and aquariums which have broken.
Gray water can have bio-contaminants, chemicals and other kinds of contamination which includes physical hazards and is not okay for consumption. Carpet padding affected by Category 2 water needs to be removed and thrown away properly. If you have any food that has come into contact with the water, it also needs to be disposed of. If it is left untreated, Category 2 water will become Category 3 water in forty-eight hours or less.
Black Water: Category 3
This category of water damage near Oakville includes sewage and other water sources that are contaminated which enter or affect the environment inside your business. Sources could be from toilet backflows which start beyond the toilet trap, to all kinds of flooding from ground surface water, sea water, and rising water from streams and rivers. That sort of water can carry organic matter and silt into buildings and make conditions of black water. When there is a backflow of sewage, the health of occupants and workers has to be the first concern. Always take out and dispose of properly carpeting and padding which has been affected by a Category 3 water loss. This type of water damage can cause your business or school to close for a time while it is being remediated.
Remember that no matter what category the water damage is, it is important to attend to the damage as soon as possible to prevent further damage and to avoid dangerous mold from forming.
SERVPRO of Oakville / Mehlville has the equipment, experience, and training to handle water damage in and near Oakville, retail shops in Mehlville, and motels in Lemay with speed and efficiency. Call us for all your mold, water, and fire damaging problems at (314) 846-0600!