Archived Blog Posts
What To Do When Your Home Floods
Call us at 215.368.4110
If your home has been flooded, the proper steps need to be taken to ensure the safety of your family along with the integrity of the structure. If the levels of flooding are not severe, here are the steps to follow so your house can get back to normal in no time. If the flooding is severe, make sure to bring in the professionals to handle the issue.
Here are some steps to take if your house is flooded:
- Evacuate everyone from the premises as soon as possible once the flooding starts. Find a dry, safe spot away from the house while waiting for the flooding to stop. If flooding is caused by a natural disaster, call the authorities or listen to the local news to find a temporary shelter and relocate to that shelter when possible. Call 911 if anyone needs medical attention and make sure that everyone is accounted for and safe.
- Attempt to find the source of the flooding if it is not from a natural disaster. Stop it at the source, try to turn it off any faucet or seal it up; turning off the main water valve may also solve the issue.
- Turn off the electricity, but do not attempt to reach the fuse box if you have to walk through water to reach it! If you cannot reach the fuse box without stepping in water, call an electrician.
- Document all the damage by taking photos and videos of all the affected areas. This information will be necessary for insurance purposes if you need to file a claim.
Next comes the clean-up process:
- Do not touch the water without the proper equipment, as it may be contaminated with sewage or other hazardous material. If you have to enter the establishment wear waders or waterproof boots.
- All of the water must be removed, and then a wet vacuum or a pump can be used to dispose of any standing water.
- Attempt to salvage any items that were not seriously damaged. Do not eat any food that has been contaminated by floodwater.
- If the water damage is not too bad, dry the space out with fans and dehumidifiers. Anything that was touched by the water also needs to be disinfected.
Warm, wet spaces are an attractive breeding ground for mold colonies, so act as quickly as possible to prevent mold growth.
- Your property needs to be as dry as possible to prevent mold spores from growing. Once a mold colony gets established it is not possible to remove completely. Keep the affected areas as dry as possible and treat them with a strong cleaner, such as a bleach solution.
- Open any windows and doors to let fresh, dry air in and circulate.
If the damage to your home is critical and you doubt you are capable of fixing the issue by yourself, don’t hesitate to call us to assist you in getting your house back to normal. Here at SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell we are experts when it comes to water damage repair and restoration, and we are mold prevention and remediation pros, too.
Keeping Your Drapes Odor Free
Keep you drapes odor free!
Dirty draperies can make the entire room smell dingy and look unattractive. No one wants to deal with unpleasant odors; cleaning and deodorizing your drapes regularly can go a long way to making a space fresh, pleasant, and appealing.
Just removing your drapes from the curtain rod and putting them into your washing machine can be very effective if they are made of cotton or polyester blends, but some textiles, such as velvet, silk, taffeta, chenille, and brocade, simply can’t be safely cleaned by that method. These types draperies will have to be dry cleaned, as well as sheers and those that are insulated or lined. The care of a professional might be needed to remove spots and unsightly stains, as well.
Before you undertake this project, take a look at the care instructions for your draperies, usually located on a tag inside. These instructions will let you know how the material should be cared for, with specifics as to water temperature, the type of cleaning solutions that will be safe, and what the dryer setting will need to be. It might even be necessary to air dry them.
Over time, drapes will collect dust and grime just from hanging in a room. They will collect odors as well, and the smell can affect the entire room. A proper cleaning, whether DIY or professional, with restore your rooms to their normal sweet, odor-free state.
If you decide to do it yourself, you will want to start with a good vacuuming! It’s not necessary to take them down if you can reach them properly. After the vacuum cleaning, a hand-held steamer will work nicely to give them a fresh look and scent. Before steaming, you will want to be sure that the cleaning instructions don’t advise against it. Those that can be machine washed will be taken down and washed and dried; make sure you remove them from the dryer immediately to alleviate wrinkles.
After your draperies have been cleaned and re-hung, you can lightly spray them with linen spray, if their care allows. This will add a lovely scent to the room, and definitely deodorize them to keep any bad odors from hanging around.
How to Safely Use Your Fire Pit
Have fun and be safe!
Now that it’s becoming more pleasant outside, many of us are uncovering our firepits and looking forward to spending time gathering around them to enjoy time with family and friends. Practicing fire safety is going to be an important thing to remember.
Let’s have a quick refresher on how to safely use your firepit:
Whether you prefer a built-in or portable fire pit, choose one that is not too large for the area. The pit should be a minimum of 10 feet away from any structures or combustible materials as well as away from trees, fences, sheds, power lines, and telephone wires.
Make sure that the seating area is large enough and properly placed for comfort and ventilation.
Don’t start your fire if it’s really windy; a strong breeze can easily blow sparks onto nearby flammable materials, such as firewood piles or roofs, and can hurt people, too.
Burn only dry material. Damp material will create excess smoke.
Don’t use lighter fluid or gasoline to get your fire going as it can easily burn out of control or even result in explosions. Don't burn tires, aerosols, fireworks, or anything containing paint or foam to avoid toxic fumes which could also explode and cause injury.
To start the fire, use a lighter to ignite crumpled pieces of paper covered with small sticks. Then, add larger sticks and a log or two to keep it burning.
Wear non-flammable clothing and hard-soled shoes when starting, sitting near, or extinguishing the fire.
Never leave the fire unattended, and keep pets and children far away from the fire as they will be attracted to it.
Keep the proper fire extinguishing equipment, or at least a water hose, handy in case there is an emergency. You could also fill a bucket with sand, which can be used instead of water to help extinguish a fire.
As the fire dies down, use a shovel and spread out the ashes to allow them to cool down. Then slowly pour water over those ashes and watch them closely to be sure that no burning embers remain or reignite. Put the cooled ashes in a specially designated ash storage metal can.
Call us at 215.368.4110, we are happy to help!
When looking at companies who can provide you with water mitigation, mold remediation and fire restoration services you might ask yourself, why SERVPRO?
Let me tell you somethings about SERVPRO:
1. SERVPRO has been around since 1967 when Ted and Doris Isaacson founded the company which started as a painting business. Today, more than 1,700 SERVPRO franchises exist nationwide. Therefore, SERVPRO has proved to be an outstanding company. SERVPRO is actually one of the top 10 franchises today.
2. Our SERVPRO started over 25 years ago. Our owner started a SERVPRO franchise, with no other employees, one vehicle and just a couple pieces of equipment. Since then, we now operate with about 20 employees, multiple types of vehicles, a wide range of equipment for all types of work in our field. We have been successful, which has allowed us to grow.
3. All of our technicians are trained and specialists in the work that they do.
4. We work with your insurance company to make sure you are covered for the work that we complete. If your insurance company does not cover a service we recommend, we will let you know the price before the work is done.
5. We work quickly to ensure that your home is back to normal ASAP.
6. We appreciate your feedback! We would like to know if your happy with our services. We also are interested in knowing if your unhappy with our services. We want to make it right, and fix anything that may have gone wrong.
Preparing You Business for Heavy Rain this Spring
April Showers Bring May Flowers!
Damage prevention is always going to save you both time and money. Preparing your business for heavy spring rainstorms will do just that. Water damage is at the top of the list of weather events that a business can suffer from, and the cleanup for this kind of event can be extensive, as well. With that in mind, we would like to share some ways you can prepare your business for heavy rains.
- The number one way to prevent damage from water is through regular maintenance. Taking good care of the drainage areas for your entrances, your parking lots and your roofing will help you to avoid water damage from large amounts of water. All around your premises are areas that can be a risk to your customers and your workforce, so regularly scheduled inspections and repairs for these areas are vital for your preparation.
- Instruct your workforce to say something if they see something. Vigilance will go a long way towards keeping your premises in good repair ahead of the rainy seasons.
- Make it part of your routine to look around your grounds for overflowing ditches or gutters after heavy rains and storms, and take note of standing water, too. Issues like these can cause erosion and potholes, not to mention breed mosquitoes. You can prepare your business for the next round of spring rains by identifying your vulnerable areas.
- If you have a flooding event, large or small, it is always going to be a good idea to get it cleaned up and dried completely as soon as possible. As you are recovering, take the time to record what you have found so that you can ensure that the proper renovations or repairs are made to help prepare you for the next round of storms. You may want to contact professionals to help you determine your most vulnerable areas and what the proper steps may be for storm and heavy rain preparation.
If you need help with cleanup from water damage, large or small, the SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell is always ready to help. You can count on us for assistance with fire damage, mold prevention, and mold remediation, too.
Preventing Mold Growth in your Apartment buildings
Prevent Mold Growth in your Apartment.
Mold can take hold in 24-48 hours if the conditions are right. Once it begins a colony, it is impossible to remove completely, and the best you can hope for is remediation. As an apartment building owner, you are responsible for a lot of people and a lot of living spaces. A mold infestation is one of those things you really don’t ever want to see. Here are a few ways you can stay on top of it:
- Educate your tenants. When a new tenant signs their lease, provide them with literature about mold and how it starts. Make sure the information is written in such a way that anyone can understand it, and make sure all their questions are answered sufficiently. Post this information in all public spaces, especially laundry and pool areas. You can include this information again in monthly emails to all tenants, and post it on your website.
- Schedule inspections. Schedule mold inspections; they can correspond with pest control to make sure your tenants aren’t overly inconvenienced. Engage a professional to check the places where mold is most often found. A person or company with mold remediation experience will know what to look for and what information to provide you with when it comes to problem areas or tenants.
- Regular cleaning. Schedule regular deep cleaning of all laundry areas and pool-related spaces such as public bathrooms and showers. If you have a clubhouse, you will want to include it in this schedule as well. Any place where your property experiences a lot of foot traffic and involves water is a prime place for mold to take hold.
- Patio rules. Institute rules for patio, deck, and balcony areas. This is where people have a tendency to store things, and it isn’t going to help you keep an eye on mold if spots such as these are cluttered and inaccessible.
Being proactive will go a long way towards preventing the outbreak of mold in your apartment buildings. If a mold problem begins, don’t hesitate to call us here at SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell. We are mold remediation experts!
Fire Prevention in Your Kitchen
Fire Safety is Important!
Mealtime is a time when families get together. We all look forward to cooking a wonderful meal while visiting with our loved ones. When in the kitchen, you should practice fire safety, so that you can prevent a fire in this room known as the heart of the home. Fire damage can be incredibly costly; a single fire may cause hundreds if not thousands of dollars in fire damage, and can put those you love at risk. Here are some fire prevention tips for your kitchen:
Cleanliness. Before you even begin to prep for the meal, ensure that the entire kitchen is clean by clearing all grime from the oven, washing the microwave, and making sure the floors are swept. Leftover food particles and grease can help a fire ignite before you know it. A clean kitchen is a safe kitchen.
Protection. When cooking, make sure to wear the right clothing. Don’t wear anything with dangling sleeves that could catch or spread a fire. Oven mitts are a must when you bring things out of the stove, too. Hot pots, pans, and utensils can catch other items on fire, so prepare a place to put them after you bring them out. Clear an area for hot items, and make sure the surface is clean and dry.
Children. Mealtime brings the kids into the kitchen, and they will enjoy help you by performing simple tasks, such as helping to get things out of the fridge. You can use this time to teach them fire safety and to ensure that they know to keep away from stoves and any other place where there might be live flames.
Proper Storage. One of the best ways to help prevent fires in your kitchen is to store all chemicals like solvents away from any heat source. Keep cleaning fluids on shelving that is protected far away from the stove and range, and make sure that any pots you are using have all handles away from everyone in the kitchen. Knocking a burning pot or pan onto the floor or a person can cause serious injuries and start a fire quickly.
Your kitchen should always be filled with friends, family, and food, and SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell is here to help make that happen. Whether your home suffers from fire damage, water damage, or a mold infestation, we are ready at a moment’s notice!
How to Handle Mold in Your Carpet
How to Handle Mold in your Carpet
When the weather is humid, keeping your carpet dry and free from mold can be a challenge. Dampness, together with dust and dirt, are tracked in by day-to-day foot traffic, and that creates conditions deep in your carpet that are perfect for the establishment of a mold colony.
Here are some tips to help you handle mold in your carpet:
- Sweep the affected area with a broom to loosen the mold growth.
- Vacuum the area to remove as much mold as possible, and empty the vacuum bag into the garbage immediately.
- Using a mixture of dishwashing soap and water, scrub the affected area with the solution.
- Let it dry in the sun if you are able to bring your carpeting out of doors, as this is one of the best ways to disinfect material. If you cannot take it outside, pat it dry using dry towels or rags.
Here is another method that can cleanse your carpet of mold:
- Scrub the affected areas with a rag soaked in dishwashing detergent and water, or do a base clean with a steam cleaner.
- Using household bleach with a gallon of water, soak the mold patch for 10 to 15 minutes.
- Using a steam cleaner, suck up the liquid, and then pat the carpet dry or remove outside into the sunshine.
If the mold growth is too much for you to handle on your own, or you would like the assistance of professionals, SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell has all the equipment and experience needed to help with any of your mold remediation needs. Our team is experienced and equipped to help with mold remediation, as well as both water damage and fire damage clean up projects of all sizes.
Fire Threats to Be Aware of In Your Restaurant
Always know where you fire hydrants are placed in your business!
A restaurant kitchen fire can happen in no time, and in that environment, there are many fire threats to be aware of. Awareness and caution can help to keep fires from starting, and also be vital in keeping the fire from spreading, threatening peoples’ lives and damaging expensive property and equipment.
- The first fire threat you will think of will be the ovens. If there is a fire in an oven, close the door immediately and turn it off, leaving the door closed. Lack of oxygen will suffocate the flames. If the oven continues to smoke and you think the fire may have continued, call the fire department right away.
- The next threat will be your stovetops. When it is a fire in a cooking pan or pot, use an oven mitt or other protection to put the lid on right away, and move it off the burner. Turn off the stove and wait for the lack of oxygen to stop the flames inside your pot. If you are not able to safely put the lid on the flaming pan, or if there is no lid readily available, use the kitchen fire extinguisher. Always aim at the base of the fire, not the flames themselves.
- A major fire threat in any restaurant kitchen is going to be a grease fire. Never throw water on this type of fire; water repels grease and will splash, spreading the fire by splattering the grease. Try one of these methods instead:
- If the fire is small, put on the lid and turn off the burner.
- Dump baking soda on it. Do not use flour; it can explode or cause the fire to expand and thread.
- Smother the fire with a wet towel or other large, wet cloth.
- Use a fire extinguisher.
- Swatting the fire with a towel, apron, or other material is likely to fan the flames and spread the fire.
- If the fire is spreading and you don’t have control, evacuate your kitchen and restaurant premises and call emergency personnel.
For cleanup after any type of fire, the SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell is always ready to help. We have all the training, skills, and equipment necessary to get you back in business as soon as possible. We are also water damage and mold remediation specialists.
How Often Should You Clean Your Rain Gutters?
Clean your rain gutters!
Unclogging gutters and rain spouts are an important part of home maintenance in the fall and spring. It’s an easy job to do yourself, but if you are afraid of heights or doubt your ability to get it done, don’t forget your friends here at SERVPRO of Lansdale. We can help you in both cleaning and unclogging your gutters, which help to keep you from dealing with damage from water during the wet months.
You risk experiencing water damage to your roof, basement and crawl space if gutters and rain spouts are not cleaned out regularly. So how often should you clean out your rain gutters? It’s going to be important to take care of this task before the rainy season hits in the spring, summer and into the fall, for sure, so it is probably a good idea to complete this task at least three times a year, ahead of wet and windy weather. Debris will build up in your gutters at those times, preventing water from draining down and out, and if the gutters can’t channel the water when it rains, it ends up pooling and backing up into your walls and attic, or near your foundation and in your basement.
You will want to use step ladders on solid level ground and try to schedule cleaning when the weather has been dry for a few days. This way, the debris, leaves and pine needles won’t be as soaked and will be much easier to remove. Remove larger debris and then follow that up with a powerful hose that washes everything else down towards the downspout. You will also want to clean the gutter filter screens and make sure there are no clogs in your downspout. If these tasks seem like more than you want to handle alone, call us!
Contact us here at SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell for any water damage caused by your rain gutters. Gutter cleaning and unclogging rain spouts is an easy regular home maintenance fix. Do your family a favor by preventing water damage to your home or business with regularly cleaning your rain gutters
Steps To Take if Your Power Goes Out During A Storm
Call SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell the next time there is a storm event in our area! We're happy to help!
A power outage is not that unusual during stormy weather, so it’s always a good idea to be prepared. We’re going to share some steps with you today that can help you keep your premises warm and safe when bad weather blows into town.
Keep Warm. If you have enough advance notice, heat your building really well and guard those higher temperatures ahead of the storm’s arrival so that your interiors stay warm longer if the power goes out. Make sure to use your fireplace or wood-burning stove if available. You may want to stockpile thick blankets, pillows, and heavy clothing just in case this event requires everyone to stay put for a while. A blizzard or heavy weather that causes flooding can create this kind of situation easily.
Charge Devices. Keep all cell phones, iPads, and laptops plugged in so that they are fully charged if you lose power. This step will guard your ability to get important information about the conditions in your area and enable you to contact emergency personnel if necessary.
Recharging with Vehicles. Cars and trucks can be used to recharge cell phones if those batteries start to die. Ensure that the vehicles are not running in enclosed spaces to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning.
Landlines. You may want to consider installing a landline ahead of seasonal bad weather. A cordless phone won’t work if the power goes out, while a corded landline draws power from the line itself and so is more reliable under these circumstances.
Don’t Call. Working cell towers may be overloaded by others in the affected area calling to check in on each other or using the internet. Cell phone providers recommend text messaging rather than calling during a disaster, since text messages use much less network capacity or battery power. Getting on social media platforms for information might be tempting, but if possible, try to keep usage brief and use the phone's apps rather than web browsers to minimize network use and battery drain.
Battery-Powered Radios. If you have access to a battery-powered radio or car radio, use these to get your news updates rather than taxing the wireless network and your phone battery.
The team here at SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell is ready to help if you have experienced damage from fire or flooding. We are large-scale cleanup experts, but we handle restorations of all sizes.
What Can Cause Water Damage in Your Commercial Building?
Call us at 215.368.4110!
Water damage of any kind can be devastating to a business. Even the smallest of leaks left unchecked can create huge amounts of trouble and cost a lot of money to repair. As a business owner, you may be thinking about ways you can prevent this from affecting your business, so let’s talk about what can cause water damage in your commercial building:
Pipes. Your commercial building may be older, with plumbing that has seen better days. Leaky pipes can easily become an issue as the gaskets and seals wear out and the pipes themselves break down.
Faucets. In kitchens, break rooms, bathrooms, and shops you are going to have sinks and water faucets. A faucet that is older and that has developed a drip can not only annoy you but can cause a lot of damage if it’s ignored for too long.
Roofing. The roofing of your commercial building should be kept in top shape to guard against water damage. If a roof is not in the best shape and has developed weak spots and small holes, the walls and ceilings of your building are in danger.
Spills. Spills of all sizes can cause damage if they are not cleaned up in a timely manner. Even the smallest puddle of water can seep into all kinds of materials, resulting in warped wood, discolored tiles, and flaking plaster. Keep in mind that it only takes a little amount of damp to attract a mold colony, and that just takes the damage to another level.
Floods. When heavy, wet weather hits, a flood can occur. We’ve all seen the pictures of what a flood can do, and it can be devastating. From washing away walkways and trees to moving vehicles and even the building itself, a flood is a powerful force.
If you experience water damage in your commercial building, call us here at SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell. We’ll be there right away to help you get back to normal. We are restoration pros, and we handle mold, too.
How to Properly Use Space Heaters
When used properly, space heaters can be a big help in cold weather!
During the winter, your central heating system works overtime. Sometimes you may only need to heat one room and give your main heater a break by using a portable space heater - an effective option, and one that can save you some money, too.
These units are high-wattage appliances, though, and they do have the potential to cause fires in your home if not used correctly. Today, we are sharing some tips on the proper use of space heaters so that you and your loved ones can stay safe.
When Purchasing A Space Heater
- Label. Check to see that your heater is listed by a qualified testing laboratory.
- Smart Heaters. Purchase one with a sensor that will shut it off automatically if it overheats or gets tipped over.
- Preparation. Install smoke detectors in your home, as well as carbon monoxide alarms. These need to be tested monthly.
- Inspection. Inspect your heater and its cord and plug. Do not use it if you think it could be defective.
Setting Up Your Space Heater
- Placement. Place your heater on a solid flat surface, and make sure it’s at least 3 feet from anything flammable. If it is being used in the garage or workshop, keep it away from any paint, oil, and gas cans.
- Hazards. Don’t place the heater on furniture or cover it up, and be careful of high-traffic areas and doorways, where someone could trip over it and get burned. Never run a power cord under carpets, rugs, or furniture.
- Plugs. Plug your heater into an outlet directly instead of using an extension cord or power strip. Make sure the plug fits well and is the only plug in the outlet.
- Water. Always keep your heater away from water, and if you’re wet - don’t touch it.
Running Your Space Heater
- Check. Check your heater often to make sure that the plug, cord, outlet, or faceplate isn’t hot. If it is, stop using it immediately, and remember that a hot cord may mean it is defective and could ignite a fire.
- Time. Don’t run your heater 24/7. It isn’t made to work for long periods of time.
- Turn it off. Never leave a space heater unattended or in a child’s room, and turn it off while you are sleeping.
SERVPRO is Hiring!
Join our team!
SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell is currently hiring Production and Cleaning Technicians.
The requirements for this position:
- Must have a professional appearance and great attitude.
- A valid driver license with a reasonable driving record.
- Ability to pass a criminal background check with no felony convictions or misdemeanors involving violence or theft.
- Must be able to pass a drug test.
- Because we provide 24-hour emergency services, must be willing to be on call, as needed.
- Some night and weekend work is required.
- Willing to travel for storm events
- Must be able to lift a minimum of 50 pounds.
- Must have a high school diploma or a GED certificate.
- Experience preferred but not necessary.
Please call 215.368.4110 or email resume to Megan.S@SERVPROWLBB.com
Water Damage - Commercial
Water Damage in the Break Room
When it comes to any mitigation work in a commercial setting, getting it done fast and right is essential. A definite bonus to those items is being able to work quickly enough to save the content of the business like furniture, desks and computers. SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell is in the business of restoring items....not throwing it away and buying a new one. If an item can be saved or restored to like-new status it is worth the time to do so. This is especially important to our customers and also the insurance company.
We take extra special care to protect items from damage while we do work, whether that is content shifting and covering items at the loss or boxing it up to clean up back at our shop. Our content specialists do amazing clean-up on a wide variety of materials and types of damage.
SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell is very proud of keeping the "restore" in restoration!
Smoke Alarm Safety
Smoke alarms play a vital role in saving lives, and when properly installed, can reduce the risk of fire injury in half.* The National Fire Protection Association
Smoke alarms work best when paired with a fire escape plan. A plan allows your family, employees or clients to escape quickly and safely in an emergency situation. Business owners should consult the local Fire Marshal to ensure specific building fire codes and smoke detector requirements are met.
SMOKE ALARM SAFETY TIPS:
-Install smoke alarms on every level of the home, including the basement according to alarm instructions. Larger homes may need more smoke alarms.
-Smoke alarms should be installed away from the kitchen and at least 10 feet away from a cooking appliance to prevent false alarms.
-Test smoke alarms at least once a month using the test button.
-Replace batteries in all smoke alarms at least once a year. If an alarm “chirps,” the battery is low and should be replaced right away.
-Replace all smoke alarms when they are 10 years old.
*Tips and statistics provided by the National Fire Protection Association.
Winter Water Damage
For the Philadelphia area and most of the northern United States winter freezing temperatures are always a cause for concern.
Besides the fact that it is freezing to us, it is also freezing our pipes! Frozen pipes many times lead to broken pipes and during these times of frozen pipes the restoration industry is swamped with work. When this happens we are lucky to have the backing of SERVPRO to help us in this time! Whether is it the polar vortex or just a week of ridiculously cold weather, SERVPRO franchises are always available to help out others who are at max work capacity.
This gives you the ability to have quick service and know that you are still getting industry-leading equipment, set-up, monitoring and restoration services.
SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. We will work hard to restore your residential or commercial property and its contents to preloss condition helping you become a hero in a disaster situation.
SERVPRO has a great network of franchises that can be called on in big weather events and we are proud to be a part of that.
Being available whenever you need us means...
- A quick response may help avoid revenue loss for property owners and minimize inconvenience to tenants.
- Restoration services can help you resume normal business functions quickly while avoiding costly construction downtime and lost revenue.
- Professional equipment and industry-approved techniques can save you time and money.
Let SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster and Blue Bell help your business get back on its feet quickly!
Technology Helping with Storms
Free ERP for your business or home!
These days, it is important to be ready for a storm and disaster can strike at a moment’s notice! Technology working hard to let us be aware of danger with more time to prepare before it hits! Technology can also be a vital tool in preparing for emergencies or disasters, as well as during or after to stay informed of the situation and in communication with others. From common technology you already use on a day-to-day basis to taking a few extra steps to prepare. Below are a few things that will help you be ready in the event of an emergency or disaster.
Store Information Online
There are many places to store important information securely online. Services like Google Drive and Dropbox offer a free way to store different types of files, from a Word document to images of important documents. Ready.gov suggests saving an electronic version of insurance policies, identification documents, medical records, and information on your pets, if necessary.
Follow the News
Stay informed by following agencies such as FEMA, local news channels, and local government on Twitter for the most up-to-date information in a disaster situation. You can also alert first responders if a rescue is needed through Twitter.
Mark Yourself Safe
The American Red Cross offers a Safe & Well check-in site to list yourself as safe or find family and friends in situations where communication is difficult to establish. Facebook also has a feature called Safety Check that is activated after natural disasters or a crisis. You will receive a notification from Facebook if you’re located in the affected area at that time.
Get in Touch
Make sure your contact information is up-to-date in your phone and e-mail for communication with family, friends, business contacts, and others whom you may need to get in contact with before, during, or after a disaster.
Keep a portable charger in your car and home in case of an emergency. You may need to recharge this from time to time, but you can also buy solar-powered chargers as well. Get an Emergency READY Profile®SERVPRO® of Birmingham is proud to offer Emergency READY Profiles® (ERP) for free at ready.SERVPRO.com to help prepares you, your property, or your business for an emergency.By developing a SERVPRO® Emergency READY Profile® for your property or 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 property or business. Put help in the palm of your hand with the Ready Plan App. Get in touch with SERVPRO® of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell today for more information on developing an ERP for your property or business!
Are You Prepared for a Power Outage?
You may need to survive on your own after an emergency. This means having your own food, water and other supplies in sufficient quantity to last for at least 72 hours. Local officials and relief workers will be on the scene after a disaster but they cannot reach everyone immediately. You could get help in hours or it might take days. Depending on the nature of the disaster road conditions may prevent help from arriving in a timely manner.
Additionally, basic services such as electricity, gas, water, sewage treatment and telephones may be cut off for days or even a week, or longer. Your supplies kit should contain items to help you manage during these outages. If the power goes out keep your pipes from freezing by shutting off the valve that allows water to come into your home. Then, open any drain valves and all faucets and let them run until the pipes are empty (it's helpful to identify these valves in advance). Next, flush all toilets and pour denatured alcohol into toilets and sinks to prevent water in the traps from freezing. Do NOT use automotive antifreeze in case there's trouble with your water system; you don't want the antifreeze to contaminate your drinking water. You may, however, use nontoxic antifreeze that's made for winterizing motor homes.
Be prepared for a power outage by keeping necessary items centrally located in your home. Take the time to ensure that everyone in your family is aware of the "kit." Periodically check your kit to see that batteries operate properly. The following is a list of items that are suggested to keep on hand:
1. Flashlights for each family member
2. Battery-operated radio and clock
3. Extra batteries
4. Containers of bottled water
5. Canned, freeze-dried or dehydrated food, powdered milk, baby supplies for infants
6. Non-electric can opener
7. List of important phone numbers
8. First-aid kit
Following a disaster, there may be power outages that could last for several days. Stock canned foods, dry mixes and other staples that do not require refrigeration, cooking, water or special preparation. Be sure to include a manual can opener and eating utensils. The following items are suggested when selecting emergency food supplies. You may already have many of these on hand.
•Store at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food.
•Choose foods your family will eat.
•Remember any special dietary needs.
•Avoid foods that will make you thirsty.
•Choose salt-free crackers, whole grain cereals and canned foods with high liquid content.
•Ready-to-eat canned meats, fruits, vegetables and a can opener
•Protein or fruit bars
•Dry cereal or granola
•Non-perishable pasteurized milk
•High energy foods
•Food for infants
These and many other helpful tips are available at ready.gov Here is the link to winter tips for before during and after a winter storm http://www.ready.gov/winter-weather When winter weather strikes the Philadelphia area knowing what to do until SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell arrives will make a difference. Call us directly at 215-368-4110
Hurricane Preparedness - Be Ready
The two keys to weather safety is to PREPARE for the risks and to ACT on those preparations when alerted by emergency officials.
Before a Hurricane:
- To begin preparing, you should build an emergency kit and make a family communications plan.
- Know your surroundings
- Learn the elevation level of your property and whether the land is flood-prone.
- Identify levees and dams in your area and determine whether they pose a hazard to you.
- Learn community hurricane evacuation routes and how to find higher ground.
- Make plans to secure your property
- Cover all of your home's windows
- Install straps or additional clips to securely fasten your roof to the frame structure.
- Be sure trees and shrubs around your home are well trimmed so they are more wind resistant.
- Clear loose and clogged rain gutters and downspouts.
- Reinforce your garage
- Plan to bring in all outdoor furniture, decorations, garbage cans and anything else that is not tied down.
- Determine how and where to secure your boat.
- Install a generator for emergencies.
- If in a high-rise building, when high winds are present, be prepared to take shelter on a lower floor because wind conditions increase with height, and in a small interior room without windows.
- Consider building a safe room.
Ice Dam and Snow Removal Services
Ice Dam Removal
What is an ice dam?
An ice dam is the ridge of ice that forms at the edge of a roof which prevents melting snow from draining as it should. The water that backs up behind the ice dam can leak into the home and cause damage to walls, floors, ceilings, insulation, and other areas. Most ice dams occur on the lowest edge of your roof.
There are 6 warning signs for ice dams:
1. Your home has had ice dams in the past.
2. You see roof ice– icicles forming on the edge of the roof, or off the front edge of the gutter.
3. Ice is coming through the soffit.
4. Ice is forming behind the gutters (if gutters are present).
5. You see ice or water on the exterior wall.
6. You see water coming through the frame of a door or window.
Professional Ice Dam Removal
SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell offers safe, professional snow and ice dam removal services for your home or business. Our experienced team will be onsite within a matter of hours, saving you time, effort and costly repairs later. Don't wait until it's too late. Call us today and have the job done safely and done right. 215-368-4110.
Why SERVPRO? Because We Care!
SERVPRO, because we care!
At SERVPRO, our number one priority is to make our customers happy. It may sound like the impossible task; after all, we are arriving on the scene when circumstances for our customers are devastating. A fire in their home, a busted pipe which has caused water damage in their kitchen, mold in their office building. These are difficult situations emotionally which is all the more reason for our employees to be sensitive to what our customers are dealing with. Many times, depending upon the damage we are mitigating, we could spend days, weeks, or even months in customer’s home or office. We get to know our clients one on one. We get to meet their children. We get to hear about their families. We know their pets’ names. We know where they leave the key in case they are not there. We get to know them by carefully handling all of their cherished possessions, sometimes cleaning them and packing them away until their homes are restored. At the end of the day, we are just people helping people. That’s what it’s all about.
Why SERVPRO?? Because we care about our customers...And they know it! Let us be the one you call when your life gets flipped upside down.
The Different Causes of Commercial Water Damage
Ready for Any Size Disaster
When business owners visualize water damage, they often picture a massive storm wiping out power lines, flooding offices, and shutting down businesses for days at a time. It is true that commercial water damage is often the result of floods and water that stems from weather events and storms.
However, many entrepreneurs and business space renters forget that storms and severe weather aren't the only causes of floods and water damage. Here are some of the typical causes of water damage to commercial buildings.
1. Malfunctioning sprinkler systems
Some older office and retail buildings still have outdated sprinkler systems that work in conjunction with fire protection systems. While such sprinklers can come in handy during a fire emergency, they can also cause commercial flood damage if they are faulty or in need of replacement. This could easily damage inventory and business assets.
2. Damaged appliances and equipment
This cause of commercial flood damage is more common in restaurants and catering facilities, as well as any business that has appliances and equipment that make use of water. If the appliance fails and sends water across your building, especially during late hours when no one is around, you may come back to work and face a water emergency.
3. Broken pipes and plumbing
Just like in a residence, if the plumbing system in your workplace fails water damage could be the result.
4. Backed up sewer lines
This is another cause of commercial water damage that often catches business owners by surprise. Should the sewer line to your building back up or become damaged, realize the potential dangers of contaminated Black Water which can cause health effects and ruin products and office furnishings.
If your business has suffered commercial water damage, SERVPRO of Warminster, Lansdale, and Blue Bell will get you back up and running again. Call us anytime 24/7 at 215-368-4110 for fast help.
Tornadoes are created out of powerful thunderstorms and can cause fatalities and devastation in seconds. They are rotating, funnel-shaped clouds that extend from the thunderstorm itself down to the ground, and generally occur near the trailing edge of the storm. Winds from a tornado have been known to reach 300 miles per hour and can be obscured by rain or low-hanging clouds, developing so rapidly that advance warning is often almost impossible.
A tornado watch means that the present weather conditions are favorable for violent weather. Keep an eye out for these danger signs:
• Dark and greenish sky
• Large, dark, and low-lying clouds
• Loud roar, often described as sounding like a passing train
A tornado warning means that a tornado has been spotted on the ground, or indicated by radar, and you will need to take cover immediately:
• Go to the lowest, most interior area of your home or business immediately, putting as many walls between yourself and the outdoors as you can.
• Stay away from windows, and do not open them.
• Use your arms to protect your head, or cover yourself with a mattress or sleeping bag/pillow.
• Remember where very heavy objects are on the floor above, and stay away from the area directly beneath, in case they fall through.
If you are in a mobile home, evacuate immediately. At school or work, you will need to follow the established drills to protect yourself. In an office building, go to an enclosed and windowless area near the center, away from glass and on the lowest floor possible. Make sure you stay off of elevators, as you could become trapped. Never try to out-drive a tornado; if you are caught in your car, get out of it and go to the nearest building. If you can’t get out, stay in the car with the seat belt on, and put your head down below the windows, covering your head with your hands, coat, or any other cushion. If you can safely get to an area that is much lower than the roadway, leave your car and lie down in that area, covering your head with your hands.
It is important to have a tornado safety plan in place at your home or office, letting your workforce and family know where to quickly take shelter.
When it comes to damages to your home or business by a tornado, hurricane or other severe weather, remember that the team here at SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell is here to help, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. If you need us, we will be there right away.
When Water Damages Your Furniture
Water damage to your furniture is not always as bad as it might seem. Sometimes the damage is very manageable and can be repaired through some simple DIY steps. If you have some furniture that needs care after flooding or weather-related water damage, here are some tips you can follow to restore your furniture and carpeting.
Wood - When a piece of furniture made from wood has been soaked in water, the first step to be taken is to let it dry completely. Place it in a room that is warm and that enjoys good circulation. You can choose to turn on the heat and fans, as well. If the outdoor temperatures are warm, you may place the furniture outside, but take care that the temperature is warm enough - cold weather will cause the piece to dry more slowly and mold can establish a colony, while air that is too hot will cause cracks to form in the furniture.
White Spots - If you find white spots on the furniture, mix a solution of toothpaste and baking soda in equal parts. After dipping a wet cloth in this solution, rub it around and on the spots and polish the area with a dry piece of fabric made from cotton.
Mildew - Black spots indicate that water has seeped through the finish into the wood itself, and that leads to mildew. If this happens, it will require you to remove the finish, clean the mildew with a bleach solution and put on a new layer of finish.
Buckled Veneer - The veneer on your furniture may have buckled or warped through contact with water. You can soak the veneer with a moisturizer to cause it to lie down flat and then wipe it clean and dry. Next, fill a syringe with veneer glue, stick the needle between the veneer and the body of the furniture, emptying the syringe slowly. After it is removed, place a wood block on top of the veneer and wait for the glue to dry, following manufacturer recommendations.
When it comes to recovery of your property and possessions from water damage, the team at SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell is always here to help. We are experts in the area of restoration from the damages of fire or water, and we are also mold prevention and remediation experts
Preparing for a Flood in your Business
You know that flooding, fire, and extreme weather can happen to a business at any time, and the structures and contents can easily be negatively affected. Staff can become injured or find themselves in dangerous situations, and these are scenarios you will want to be able to prevent or be ready for. You probably have an emergency preparedness plan in place, but when is the last time you looked it over? Updating your business emergency plan is a smart thing to do on a regular basis so that you will always be prepared:
• PROACTIVE MAINTENANCE. Make sure that all areas around your buildings are kept free from flammable materials and that landscaping is trimmed well on a regular basis to prevent fires from spreading if they occur. If you have replaced doors or windows lately, don’t just assume that they are properly sealed. Parking and entrance/exit areas need to always be clear and safe, in case of a disaster. Your emergency plan should include steps that need to be taken ahead of time that will lessen the effect a disaster could have. If there is heavy rainfall during inclement weather, or if the building is near a body of water such as a lake or river, low-lying spaces are going to be in danger. Keeping these areas in good repair before a flooding event occurs will go a long way towards avoiding bigger issues.
• EVACUATION INFORMATION. State law requires that you post an evacuation plan in a visible place for your staff and customers, and this needs to be up-to-date, with any floor plan or grounds changes noted. Make sure that your employees understand it and know how to carefully guide clientele to safe areas should a disaster occur.
• CURRENT CONTACT INFORMATION. Update your phone and email contact info monthly, so that all employees can be effectively alerted to important information whether they are at work or at home, should a disaster event occur.
Our team here at SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell are ready to help with water and fire damage, and we are proud to be mold remediation experts. Our professional damage restoration company is an important and welcome resource during tough times; we are able to complete all necessary repairs in a timely and efficient manner as well as keep you and your workforce out of harm’s way.
Water damage from a flood
If you live in an area that often experiences severe weather and flooding, you should make flood safety a priority in your home. Use the following tips to help keep you, your family and your home safe during a flood.
1. Make an Emergency Kit
Depending on the severity of the storm you are expecting, your emergency kit may vary from time to time. However, there are some items that should always be included, such as flashlights, radios and batteries in case the power goes out. Canned food and bottled water are good additions as well.
2. Have an Evacuation Plan
While an emergency kit can be helpful for less damaging storms, you need to know how to leave your home safely if the weather becomes a threat. Create a flood safety plan with your family that includes each member as well as any pets. Make sure to practice ahead of time so you are all familiar with the procedure.
3. Do Not Travel Through Flood Waters
If you do need to evacuate your home, only travel on roads that have not been flooded. Even if the waters look shallow, there may be road damage or debris lurking underneath. Depending on the speed and depth of the moving water, cars can be carried away resulting in a dangerous situation.
4. Have Your Home Cleaned As Soon As Possible
The need for flood safety does not end when the flood does. Flood waters can cause contamination and might make your family sick if it is not completely removed. If water from a flood has entered your home, it is a good idea to hire an emergency remediation service to help with cleanup as well as any necessary repairs. Throw away any food that has been in contact with the water.
It can be difficult to know what to do during an emergency situation. Keeping these safety tips in mind will be beneficial to you and your family the next time you find yourself expecting severe weather. If your home does suffer a water damage call the professionals at SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell at 215.674.8222
Water Damage Odors
After a water damage in your home, you may be facing a variety of problems. However, one that you may not expect are the odors a water damage can create. Mold growth, sewer water, and debris can all leave foul smells behind, even after the water is drained away. If you have recently experienced a flood in your home, there are a few ways to sniff out the source of these smells so you can have them eliminated.
1. Musty Smells
After floodwater enters your home, it may be absorbed by drywall and other porous building materials. This can cause mold to grow in the interior walls, especially if they contain insulation. Mold can cause a musty, foul odor due to the mycotoxins it can release. In most cases, the stronger the musty smell, the more serious the mold growth invasion.
2. Dirt or Earthy Odors
When outdoor flooding invades your home, it can also bring mud, clay and other types of dirt along with it. Earthy or wormy odors can be left behind in your walls or under carpeting, where they can linger for weeks afterward. Having porous building materials replaced can alleviate this issue. Consider having drywall and molding torn out and the rooms professionally cleaned before any reconstruction takes place.
3. Sewer Smells
Few odors are as unpleasant as those that come from a sewer. If your home experienced a flood due to a sewage loss, the bitter, foul smell could remain long after the water is drained away. Calling in a waterdamage restoration service may give you a number of options for removing this smell, from the use of ozone machines to special cleaning techniques that typically cannot be found elsewhere.
Mold growth, dirt and foul sewer smells can make your residence smell unbearable after a flood. Learning where these smells come from and how to eliminate them can restore your happy home. Please call the water damage mitigation specialist at SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell if your in need of odor removal or water damage mitigation. 215.368.4110
How SERVPRO can partner with your Business
Owning a business in the hospitality industry involves a unique set of challenges. Especially if your business is successful! You will enjoy lots of customers as a successful business owner, and that’s great! With lots of traffic, your business will experience wear and tear above and beyond the norm, however, so you need to be prepared for these types of events and take a proactive viewpoint to stay ahead of the game.
Having a company such as SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell on your team will be a great benefit to you here. SERVPRO professionals are experienced in cleanups after fire damage or water damages, whether large or small, as well as being experts in the area of mold remediation. As a national franchise, we enjoy great business relationships with insurance professionals, so anything that will involve claims will be a breeze when you work with us.
Does your business involve food preparation? Heavy duty cleaning projects for industrial kitchens are all part of a day’s work for the team at SERVPRO. Going over your kitchen areas thoroughly to get hard to reach places sparkling clean will be something you can enlist us to complete. Stripping all tips of floors and deep cleaning, sanitizing, and restoring them is also something that we here at SERVPRO excel in.
Perhaps your business is as a hotelier. Floors are a concern here, too, but from a different perspective. You will want all your spaces to look as though no one has even been there! Fresh and pristine hallways and lobby areas are great first impressions for your patrons, and a company like SERVPRO that has years of experience in cleanups of all kinds will be the perfect answer to this type of challenge.
In the event that your hospitality-based business suffers damage from storms, accidents, or machinery malfunctions, or any other unforeseen issues that can come out of nowhere, enlist the help of SERVPRO to get things back to normal as soon as possible.
The team at SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell is proud to serve our clients. Call us today for help with all your clean up projects! 215.368.4110
Preventing a Fire at your Business
Fire damage in your business is a serious concern. Even moderate damage can result in your facility being closed for repairs for weeks on end, and this can be financially devastating. The unfortunate reality is that no business is immune to the risk of fire. Some facilities may be more likely to endure damage from a fire, such as a restaurant that uses open flames throughout the day. However, there are many fire hazards that are present in most workplaces on a daily basis regardless of the type of activities that take place in the building. When you know what these hazards are, you can take proper steps to address and mitigate those risks and prevent possible fire damage and smoke damage.
Damage to electrical wiring can result in sparks that quickly lead to damaging fires. Electrical wiring damage may include frayed cords, such as those connecting desktop computers to the wall power outlets. It may also include damage to internal wiring inside the walls, and these may be damaged by pests and other forces. Electrical fires may also start when power sockets are overloaded or when equipment gets too hot. Periodically review your company's wiring to identify areas of concern that need to be addressed.
Poor Equipment Maintenance
Other hazards in workplaces are related to poor equipment maintenance. For example, failing to service your furnace regularly may result in the accumulation of dust and other flammable debris. A gas leak in the furnace could result in a fire or an explosion. Fire hazards related to poor maintenance may also include dusty, dirty or greasy components, such as air ducts and vents, kitchen exhaust vents and many other features that are used throughout your facility. Scheduling necessary maintenance can decrease fire risk in these areas.
Flammable or Combustible Materials
Flammable and combustible materials are most commonly associated with industrial and warehouse environments, but even restaurants, hotels, dry cleaners and many other types of business may store combustible materials on-site. These materials should remain properly sealed according to the manufacturer’s recommendations at all times.
As you can see, there are numerous fire hazards that could result in serious damage in your business. If your business has already experienced fire damage, it is essential that repair work is completed as soon as possible. SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster and Blue Bell is your trusted source for quality repair services. We can quickly restore your building to its previous condition so that operations can resume in your place of business. To request assistance with your damaged building, contact us today. You can reach us at 215.368.4110
Water and Flood Damage Prevention
No business owner wants to see a loss happen because of flood damages, especially when they could have been prevented. There are the floods that happen because of bad weather, and then there are the water damages that come about due to equipment failure or negligence. Here are a few water damage prevention tips for you that will help you avoid the worst of both.
All appliances have a limited lifespan, so it’s important to check your refrigerators, dishwashers, water heaters, HVAC units, and bathroom fixtures for any signs of failure. Flooding in these areas will create huge issues for you, especially if they happen over the weekend! Look for:
-The sound of running water
-Unpleasant odors in floors, walls, or drains
-Low water pressure
-Mold growing around appliance or fixtures
-Worn out hoses
If leaks are left untreated, they can lead to mold growth, stains, and floor and wall damages. Address any leaks immediately - this is one of the best water damage prevention tips we can give you!
Watching your water bill is another way to prevent problems. If it goes up considerably for no apparent reason, you probably have a leak somewhere. You can also read your water meter to maintain a check on it.
Maintaining roofs, gutters, and exterior windows and doors will go a long way towards keeping your business safe from the elements and flooding that can happen during heavy rains. Any drainage system on your property will need to be properly cared for, too, with debris and dirt clogging the system being removed regularly in case of heavy water. A backed up drainage system can be a huge flooding culprit.
If you are due for some landscaping, make sure any new large shrubs or trees are planted in places where they won’t interfere with pipelines, and remove those that are already in the danger zone. Root systems can easily break apart piping and create a flooding event. Choose those plants and trees that don’t have aggressive root systems, just to be safe.
When you are dealing with a flood or water damage, the SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell team is always here to help, 24/7. We are water and fire damage specialists, and we have years of experience with mold remediation and prevention, as well.
Sprinkler Systems in your Multi-Family Structure
The sprinkler system in your multi-family structure is made to go off when it senses extreme heat (174 degrees Fahrenheit or above). The heads contain a temperature-sensitive mechanism that can only be activated when the temperature at the sprinkler head exceeds the allowable range, and they operate independently, with those directly exposed being set off. Most fires are extinguished, or controlled, by three sprinklers or less, but the damage from just one sprinkler head can be significant: a sprinkler head can release from 15 to 40 gallons of water per minute and can fill an entire bathtub in under two minutes!
Prompt and professional decision-making following a sprinkler discharge in your multi-family structure is going to be essential; the actions you take in the first 24-48 hours will save you significant time and money in minimizing the water damage and help to eliminate the possibility of a mold colony getting started on your property. If your tenants complain of odors or signs of mold, respond immediately, and use professional help for mold remediation, should it become an issue.
The water in a sprinkler system is stagnant and non-potable and has absorbed oils and other contaminants within the piping, so cleanup actions will involve surface cleaning from stains, and elimination of odors, in addition to water damage restoration and moisture remediation measures. Where fabric and textiles are affected, prompt action must also be taken to avoid permanent staining and to preserve these articles.
The hard, non-porous surfaces in the condominium units, such as plastics, vinyl, ceramic tile, etc. will need to be done with a mild detergent followed by complete drying. Employ dehumidifiers for wet areas and during wetter seasons, as well, for comprehensive and complete drying.
The professionals at SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell will arrive equipped with specialized instrumentation to facilitate comprehensive project investigation, design and implementation, and will complete your damage recovery in a timely and excellent manner. We are experts in water damage restoration, fire damage restoration, mold remediation, commercial restoration, and much more! If your multi-family structure suffers a water damage please call the pros at 215.368.4110
Storm Damage Prevention for Spring
In South Eastern PA, spring is very welcome. After all the gloomy, cold days and nights, it’s great to see the sun again. The surrounding fields are green, and flowers are everywhere! We are all anxious to get outside and have some fun.
Spring also brings with it some stormy weather, so you will want to be prepared for that. Damages to your home and other properties can make you forget the joy that this season brings with it, so let’s talk about some Spring storm damage prevention tips:
Landscaping. A thorough cleaning of your landscaping for your home or business is in order after harsh winter weather. Some plants and trees will have suffered, and some may not have made it at all. Removing dead branches and trees or other large vegetation will prevent damages in a storm from flying debris.
Drainage. Make sure your property enjoys proper drainage; often the ditch system will be full of leaves, branches, and other debris from the winter, and when water starts running, this can present a problem. Floods, even small ones, are very damaging to your property and can become dangerous very quickly.
Roofing. Have a thorough inspection done of your roofing. Loose shingles, cracks, or damage from excessive moisture made by melting snow or ice can weaken your roof’s ability to keep water out. Make these repairs right away; if you need a new roof, don’t put it off!
Doors and windows. Take a good look at all exterior doors and windows to make sure they are in good repair and fit properly. Are they well-sealed against the coming wet weather of Spring? Did they sustain damages from winter? If so, schedule repairs soon before spring storms come.
Gutters. Be sure to have your rain gutters cleaned out to prevent damages to your building through spilling water. When debris and dirt clog your gutters, the water simply has nowhere to go but into your walls when it backs up. Waterlogged walls are a great place for mold to start a colony, and that is certainly something you will want to prevent!
Here at SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell, we are always ready to help in the event you suffer from Spring storm damages. We handle all sizes of fire or water damage events, and we are experts when it comes to mold and its remediation and prevention.
Services You Might Not Know We Offer
In addition to clean up after fire damages or water damages, the SERVPRO team is also experienced in mold remediation and removal, but you probably already know that. We are well-known for our expertise in these areas and are proud of our service levels to our clientele. It’s an honor to serve you! Today we would like to share a few of the other commercial services we offer that you might not know about so that you can always keep SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell in mind when the need arises:
BIOHAZARDS. Exposure to biological and chemical contaminants can pose serious health consequences. Failure to properly remove such substances can contribute to unhealthy and dangerous environments. Our team is trained to safely remove biohazards and dispose of them properly in accordance with all health regulations. We are equipped with the necessary safety apparatus and cleaning products, and so can help transform these unhealthy environments back into clean, safe homes and offices.
TRAUMA AND CRIME SCENE. After the police have finished processing a crime or accident scene, the cleaning and restoration process can begin. Oftentimes, these events can be traumatic, and dealing with the cleanup can be difficult. Many times, crime and accident scenes have blood and other contaminants that pose a serious health risk. SERVPRO will respond immediately with the specialized training, protective equipment, and experience necessary to safely clean trauma and crime scenes. Our technicians follow OSHA and EPA protocols to help transform an unsafe environment back into a clean, safe home or business. Our first focus is always safety, since crime or accident scenes may involve bloodborne pathogens, harmful chemicals, and other dangers. We will always treat your property and the people involved with the greatest empathy and respect in the face of trying circumstances.
Crime Scene Residues
• From fingerprint powder and evidence-gathering chemicals to tear gas and pepper spray residues, we can clean and restore your property after a crime scene investigation.
• We remove and dispose of bodily fluids, tissue and other potentially pathogenic substances resulting from accident, trauma, crime or death. Our trained Professionals clean, disinfect and deodorize the structure.
These are just a few of the additional services you might not know about that SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell offers. Please call us at 215.368.4110 to schedule an inspection.
Storm damage can cause a moldy situation
Mold spores are all around us, so there’s the potential for mold to turn up anywhere on your property, at any time. The bad news is that you can’t truly remove black mold, but mold remediation is the next best thing. Never heard of it? Read on to understand what it means and how it can help your property get back on track.
What Is Mold?
Mold is best described as a type of fungus made up of small organisms. These organisms are found everywhere, thanks to the lightweight, airborne spores they use to reproduce. Believe it or not, mold is only a problem when it finds a moist area in building and starts to grow. Some of mold’s favorite spots in which to grow include:
• Damp basements
As mentioned before, because mold spores are so numerous and moveable, you’ll never truly get rid of all of them and their potential to replicate. But mold cleanup via remediation presents the next best thing.
What Is Mold Remediation?
Rather than trying to eradicate mold, remediation is centered on resetting mold levels to lower levels where it isn’t likely to reproduce. It’s important to understand that while the remediation concept sounds simple, it’s a multi-step process best left to experts. Those experts will:
• Inspect your property to assess black mold damage
• Take steps to contain the mold
• Filter your air
• Remove visible mold
• Clean walls, furniture, etc.
Remediators will also help you understand the source of moisture feeding the mold - a critical step in ensuring that your mold problems won’t be back anytime soon.
Many businesses have learned the hard way that black mold can be a big hassle. It can create musty, unpleasant odors at best and completely ravage your property at worst. While you can’t remove it, remediation is your best option. If your property suffers a water damage from a storm be sure to call the professionals at SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell to tryout the structure properly so that mold will not grow.
How to keep mold from Spreading in your commercial space
The mold cleanup process can vary depending on how much or how little mold has spread in a building. It can be valuable to understand ways you can stop the spread of mold in your commercial facility
1. Quick Identification
Mold spores can easily spread throughout a building and identifying a high number of spores in a timely manner is often important. A high number of spores often occurs as a result of water damage, and the sooner the cause of the growth is identified, the sooner cleanup can actually begin. If water is leaking or an area has been flooded, it can be helpful to turn off the water to your building in order to decrease the likelihood of mold spreading to other areas of your building.
Mold containment is a crucial step in the mold cleanup process that mold damage and remediation experts use to prevent mold from moving to other areas in a business. Containment methods involve isolating the areas that are affected by mold and taking various steps to stop the spores from leaving the contained area. In order to bring the number of spores down to an appropriate level, air filters are used. Since moving air makes it much easier for mold to spread, fans are also turned off along with heat and air conditioning.
3. Removing Items Affected by Mold Growth
After mold has been identified and contained, items that have been damaged are removed from the business. Though containment methods and air filters make it less likely that mold will spread, taking items that have been damaged by mold further reduces the likelihood of mold spreading. After damaged items have been removed from the business, professionals will determine whether items can be restored or if they should be replaced.
Knowing ways to keep mold from spreading can make the mold cleanup process cost-efficient and quick. Identifying mold in a timely manner, containing mold and removing items that are moldy can help to prevent mold from spreading throughout your property. If your commercial property is suffering from a mold damage, please consider calling the professionals at SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell 215.368.4110
The Difference Between Storm Watch and Storm Warning
The labels of "storm watch" and "storm warning" are used year-round and in different situations across the country. Knowing the difference between a watch and warning — and what actions you should take when they're issued — can help you and your family take appropriate precautions and stay safe.
National Weather Service alerts
The National Weather Service (NWS) keeps an eye on forecasts and climate data around the country. When it detects a potentially serious weather pattern, the NWS will notify local meteorologists in the area. Since you may not always be near a radio or television, you can stay up-to-date on weather changes by following your local news stations on social media, downloading the NWS app or signing up for text alerts from the NWS.
When you hear news that a storm watch or storm warning has been issued, keep in mind that the term being used describes both the immediacy and level of force of the storm.
What does "storm watch" mean?
A storm watch means that severe weather hasn't occurred yet, but upcoming weather conditions are expected to produce potentially dangerous weather, such as heavy rain, hail or strong gusts of wind. Because conditions can change quickly, the NWS wants to give you as much time as possible to safeguard your personal property and take shelter.
What does "storm warning" mean?
A storm warning indicates that meteorologists have already observed severe conditions. If you hear that a storm warning has been issued, it means potentially dangerous weather is imminent in or near your location. Depending on the type of weather warning, take appropriate action as quickly and safely as possible.
Types of storm watches and warnings
• Severe Thunderstorms. A thunderstorm watch, which can be in effect for several hours, means weather conditions exist where severe thunderstorms can easily develop. A thunderstorm warning means current storm conditions can turn worse, including heavy rain and strong winds. Whether a watch or a warning, it's best to stay inside and away from windows.
• Tornadoes. April, May and June are the most active months of the year for tornadoes to occur. A tornado watch means severe weather, such as large hail or winds over 58 mph, has the potential to turn into tornadic activity. A tornado warning indicates that either a strong weather rotation could produce a tornado at any moment or that a funnel cloud has already been spotted. In either situation, you should seek shelterimmediately and pay attention to local news updates.
• Flash Floods. A flash flood watch signals that even if there isn't any standing water in your immediate area, you should be ready for those conditions to change at any moment. Flash flood watches can turn to warnings quickly, meaning that flooding of nearby bodies of water is imminent or already happening. In either case, move to higher ground as safely as possible, and stay out of the flood's path — for instance, don't try to drive your vehicle through large areas of pooling water.
• Tropical Storms. The NWS tries to issue tropical storm watches as early as possible to allow enough time for emergency prep, including the possibility of evacuation. If you hear a warning, though, a tropical storm is expected within the next 36 hours, and you should take shelter immediately.
• Hurricanes. Whether there is a tropical storm expected to strengthen into a hurricane, or one that's already formed, a watch means a hurricane has the potential to impact your area. You should gather emergency supplies and be prepared to act quickly. Warnings are typically issued up to three days in advance — if one is issued, take direction from local authorities on whether to take shelter or to leave the area immediately.
• Winter Storm. A winter storm watch is usually issued at least 24 hours in advance of the storm. It lets you know that while hazardous weather conditions are likely, the exact areas and timing may not be known yet. If a watch is upgraded to a winter storm warning, try to avoid traveling, as visibility and road conditions can become unsafe.
No matter the type of watches or warnings that may come your way, it's important to properly prepare for storm conditions in advance. Also, be sure to review your policies with your insurance agent so you know what's covered in case of storm damage.
Partnering With SERVPRO
Claims Service May Speed Up Settlements
An insurance agent or adjuster will need to access claim information to process and settle a claim. Necessary documentation ranges from an individual estimate and report of damage to data on similar claims and job costs. Learn more about three ways in which an electronic claims service may speed up an insurance claim settlement.
1. View Estimates As Soon As Possible
After SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell responds to a call with an on-site inspection and provides a verbal briefing, damage mitigation and restoration professionals will calculate an estimate. A one-stop shop such as SERVPRO can account for the costs of the complete job. Companies that only provide mitigation or restoration services will issue separate estimates, which may slow down claim settlement. SERVPRO will upload a comprehensive estimate to an internal system, and the documentation will be made available to insurance representatives on the Claims Information Center.
2. Access Claim Information and Updates at Any Time
Once an individual estimate is posted on an electronic claims service, insurance agents and adjusters can gain access to this information at any time. The availability of documentation necessary to process an insurance claim may reduce delays due to communication. Insurers can keep track of updates through the same service.
3. Search Comparison Data
An electronic claims service can also function as a research resource. Collected data about types of claims, causes of loss, job file costs and information enables an insurer to compare the performance of a franchise to other locations across the region or nationwide to make sure an estimate is reasonable.
An electronic claims service can help an insurance agent and adjuster process and settle insurance claims for damage at your property. Insurance companies and clients work with SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell, a company that maintains this type of service, to ensure that insurance representatives always have access to important information.
Smoke Damage in your Kitchen
The damages that fire can cause are, of course, significant and devastating. Smoke is a big issue as well, and very hard to get rid of. In the event of an oven or stove fire in your kitchen, you can be left with a mess that requires the help of professionals who know how to deal with the residue left behind, and that smell.
It’s not as easy as just opening a window and letting it all air out, unfortunately. The acidity of smoke and soot can make them difficult to remove, and they contain particles that are harmful to breathe, so it is going to be essential to clean the smoke damage completely as soon as possible.
There are a few things that a client can do themselves to alleviate smoke damage using items found in most homes, such as rubbing alcohol, vinegar, degreaser, and hot water. You will need one item that isn’t normally in your closet, and that is a dry-cleaning sponge.
Open all windows, even if it’s cold outside - ventilation is essential. Use fans, if necessary, to get air moving, and turn off your HVAC system to prevent the spread of the smoke and soot and their harmful particles.
Make sure you wear protection for yourself, such as long pants and long sleeves. Gloves and eye protection are important, as well, since you will be freeing soot as you clean. Lay down floor protection and remove furniture that is not damaged. You may be able to cover items with plastic if the affected area is small, but if it’s the whole kitchen it will be wise to simply remove everything and seal off undamaged areas.
This can become and overwhelming task, if that is the case, you may find it necessary to call a professional for help. Here at SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell, we have the expertise necessary to help you recover your kitchen from smoke damages
The Difference in Hardwood Floor Cleaners
Hardwood floors are hailed for their natural beauty, but they require varying degrees of attention to maintain these good looks, depending on the finish. Floors with penetrating finishes (that soak into the wood) and wax top coats (which protect the finish) can be quite a chore to maintain because they easily absorb water and require solvent-based cleansers only—one reason many people opt for surface-sealed wood floors instead. These other hardwood floors all have polyurethane, urethane, or other finishes to form a protective waterproof barrier and protect from light scratches and dents, and their regular cleaning is much easier to get right because of the wider variety of cleansers that can be used
What Makes a Great Hardwood Floor Cleaner?
Factor in these features as you read labels of hardwood floor cleaners.
Gentle ingredients. Look for non-corrosive ingredients like water, weak acids such as citric acid or hydrogen peroxide, or weak bases such as sodium bicarbonate. Avoid products containing strong acids or bases, such as nitric acid or sodium hydroxide, which can strip the finish of surface-sealed floors. Also avoid hardwood floor cleaners containing oil, which can leave a sticky residue, or wax, which can dull the floor finish and leave it slippery.
Concentration. You’ll find hardwood floor cleaners in one of two formulations:
Complete hardwood floor cleaners can be applied to the floor straight out of the bottle because they contain all the necessary ingredients pre-mixed. They minimize overall time and effort, so great for everyday or last-minute cleaning jobs. Floor cleaner concentrate products contain a potent cleaning fluid that must be diluted in water specified per product instructions before use. While they take more time to prepare, they let you adjust the potency (and pungency) by adding more or less water.
Convenient packaging. Hardwood floor cleaner is sold in three types of packaging:
Spray bottles feature a built-in trigger that dispenses a fine mist of cleaning solution onto the floor. You then either wipe down or mop the floor, which makes this packaging option good for spot cleaning or cleaning small areas.
Squirt bottles dispense a small pool of cleaner onto the floor, which can then be mopped. This option is versatile enough to use on small or large floor areas.
Refill bottles contain larger quantities, which you can pour into either a spray bottle or the fluid cartridge of a reusable spray mop. Avoid pouring cleaner from refill bottles directly onto the floor, because it’s easy to accidentally dispense more than intended—potentially causing floors to absorb the fluid and swell. This is the best option for larger cleaning jobs of one or more floors.
Please consider these recommendations when choosing a hardwood floor cleaner. If you don't feel up for the task. SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell are here to help.
The SERVPRO Team
An insurance adjuster may be the loneliest and most important person in the property insurance industry. Responsibilities include:
• Guaranteeing company profitability by keeping costs low and minimizing waste
• Creating customer satisfaction with fast response and quality restoration
• Providing vendors with restoration specifications and answers to questions
• Facilitating the entire process with open communications and status updates
When disaster strikes, an insurance adjuster can expect an assignment to a team. The difference is that the numbers are bigger on a team. There are more customers, claims and vendors. Managing many claims on a team can quickly become an overwhelming task.
Insurance Adjusters Prefer Self-Reliant Vendors
It’s easy to imagine that insurance adjusters prefer some vendors over others. However, adjusters don’t choose. The customers do. There are several categories of vendors.
1. Vendors not on the preferred vendor list require the most attention. These vendors have never done work for the insurance company or haven’t done it very often. They may not understand the procedures and guidelines that they must follow. They need training and extra support.
2. Some vendors need more attention than others. The apparent need can happen in several ways. One is that even great vendors may need a bit of micromanaging. Another is that some vendors don’t understand how much self-reliance is acceptable.
3. Good vendors are invisible until they finish.They accept the information from the adjuster, ask questions up front and disappear. The next time the vendor communicates is when the job is complete.
4. The best vendors manage claims in-house.The SERVPRO team manages the insurance claim process using the Claims Information Center. It is the central warehouse for every bit of information that SERVPRO has on the claim. This information includes the original claim, estimates, photos and scanned paperwork. This information is available in print or by email.
The Team Is Ready To Help
The insurance adjuster expects you to select a vendor. When that time comes, know that the SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell remediation team is always ready to help. Please call us at 215.368.4110.
Being Prepared For When Your Business Floods
Whether flooding occurs without warning, as in a flash flood, or from a slow business during, or after, a heavy storm, it is a common occurrence in many parts of the country. Today we are highlighting some important steps to consider as a business owner if your location should experience flooding.
BE VIGILANT. Even if you think the risk of flooding will be low, it’s important to be vigilant. Understand your location’s potential exposure; you can reference the NOAA Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service’s quarterly updates and maps to see what areas are at higher flooding risk during certain times of the year. Historic flooding maps are also a helpful resource. Just knowing the potential rates of rising waters and how long it would take to drain off will be important pieces of information for you as a business owner.
INFORMATION. Be sure you keep copies of insurance documents and other key business information in a flood-safe location. Using the cloud for storage of business-related information will be essential when it comes to the potential loss of documentation.
BUILDING PREPARATION. Prepare your location for a flooding event. Investing in a sump pump could help to minimize damages, as well as maintaining gutters, drains, and roofing. Anchoring any fuel tanks is also a good step to take.
EMERGENCY PLAN. Create a flood evacuation route and share it will your workforce so that they know how to get themselves and any customers to higher and safer ground if it becomes necessary. Invest in an emergency kit and keep it well-stocked, in case people get stranded in the building.
Flooding is dangerous, and kills nearly 100 people yearly, in addition to causing an average of eight billion dollars in property damage in the U.S. yearly. Being prepared can keep your business and your workforce safe in the event of a flood.
When it comes to a flooding event, SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster and Blue Bell are here to help. We specialize in cleanup projects of all sizes, so call us for assistance if your business experiences any kind of disaster
Odor Removal After a Fire Damage
Since homeowners do not expect or predict when disaster might strike, there are often common functions of the house that can exasperate the spread of the damage from an incident like a fire. With conditioned or heated air being a staple to nearly every home in the area, circulating air throughout your home is something that happens almost continually. Whenever situations like fires take place, a running HVAC system can become adversely affected and become instrumental in spreading damages like soot and smoke residue to otherwise unaffected areas of your property.
One of the hardest obstacles to overcome after a disaster like this in your home is your need for fire odor control. Smoke damage can seep into materials, fabrics, furniture, and much more. We have many pieces of equipment that can help to eliminate these harsh odors permanently from your home, and we also have specialized areas and tools at our facility to deodorize contents of your home removed during the mitigation phase and pack-out process.
Our SERVPRO professionals work to respond immediately to your emergency with the necessary mitigation to help protect the contents, furniture, and affected items within your home. These often get taken to our nearby facility for focused cleaning and deodorization efforts. The most effective approach for many of these items is time in an ozone chamber. This special compartment of our facility adds air with added oxygen to neutralize odor molecules in the items we have placed inside. This practice, even in portable units, is not safe for use around pets and your family, however.
To remove noxious fire odors in open areas and permanent fixtures throughout your damaged property, our SERVPRO professionals can combine the use of hydroxyl generators and thermal foggers. If there are no people or pets present in the home, ozone generators can also be a practical solution for deodorization in your home.
Restoring your home after a fire requires addressing lingering odor concerns throughout the house. Our SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell fire restoration specialists have the tools and expertise to help. Give us a call anytime at 215.368.4110
Mildew vs. Mold
Mold and mildew are an unpleasant pair that no homeowner wants to encounter. While they seem to go hand in hand, they have some important differences. Understanding the differences is key to preventing mildew or mold damage and keeping your home pristine. Here are some ways to recognize the distinction between these two.
One reason people confuse mold and mildew is their many similarities. Some obvious and less obvious include:
• Both like warm, moist areas
• Both can create unpleasant smells
• Both are fungi
And of course, both are a fungus that no homeowner wants to see. That’s where the similarities end, however.
What is Mildew?
Mildew is best described as a surface fungus. It often appears as a patch of gray on a moist surface. Mildew growth is particularly common in bathrooms, where it favors shower curtains. Fortunately, surface mildew is easily treated with cleaner, a scrubbing brush and some elbow grease.
What is Mold?
Mold damage is like mildew in that it is a fungus and is commonly found in areas that are often wet, such as near pipe condensation. Mold comes in many colors, however, ranging from black to green. It’s also usually a sign of a much larger infestation than a spot of mildew is. Mold is also occasionally slimy, unlike mildew. Mold can be a lot harder to truly eradicate because it tends to have deep roots and isn’t removed with common household cleaner. Mold can destroy furniture and even walls, so it’s important to take evidence of the fungus seriously.
What To Do?
Whichever of these you see, it’s a good idea to act quickly to minimize mildew or mold damage. Removing the source of moisture and cleaning surface fungus is a good start. For a permanent change, talk to a mold remediation company to get rid of the mold growth you see and the leftover spores you don’t see.
If you find yourself dealing with a Mildew or Mold issue in your home or business please call the professionals at SERVPRO of Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell at 215.368.4110
Sources for Commercial Water Damages
Planning ahead can keep your commercial property safe from water damage. Just keeping an eye on the places where water can become an issue for your business will help you stay ahead of the game. Some of the top sources for commercial water damage can include:
- STORMS: Winter and Spring bring lots of water, either by steady rains, or ice and snow, and all that water can cause a lot of problems. Make an inspection around your place of business; are you prepared for wet weather? Take note of weather stripping and poorly fitting doors and windows and the drainage for your parking areas and entryways as well as all warehousing and manufacturing outbuildings.
- EQUIPMENT FAILURES. Unexpected events such as a burst pipe in your parking area or under a sink, or a broken or misdirected landscaping sprinkler can easily create problems by sending large amounts of water to the wrong places. In shops and warehouses, water damage can come about from broken pipes or equipment failures, such as pumps, etc.
- WATER MAINS. These kinds of situations come from circumstances that are out of your control, but you do want to keep them in mind. Make sure your parking areas and entryways can stay open in the event that your area streets are flooded due to a burst water main. You know you will have to wait for the city or county to come and correct the problem, and you want to stay in business.
- LEAKS. After wet weather, you may realize you have smaller water damage issues that you hadn’t noticed before. The roof of your office area, your warehouse, or your storage area needs to be properly cared for as well to protect your product, machinery, and office furniture from water damage through leaks and seepage.
If you have sustained water damages to your home or commercial property, the team here at SERVPRO Lansdale, Warminster, and Blue Bell is ready to help in any way we can. We have the expertise to handle water and fire damage and specialize in mold remediation
Additional Items to Consider with a Fire / Smoke Loss
Fires are devastating and can cause major damage to your home or business, which can often require you to hire licensed professionals to make the repairs. The extent of the damage will all depend on the fire itself, how it started, and how long it burned, and how it was put out. A few determining factors when it comes to fire damage restoration cost will be:
- The number of affected rooms
- The amount of damage
- Repairs needed
You probably also know that water damages will be extensive, since this is what is often used in the fighting of the fire. Water can damage walls, floors and furniture, and if not handled quickly, the damage can get worse over time. In addition, mold can easily take hold in damp conditions.
There are a few additional costs of fire damage restoration that you might not know about, such as:
- Soot removal and cleanup. Soot can build up on curtains, walls, floors, and contents
- Cleanup of burnt materials. All the materials that have been burned and are no longer usable or are obstructive will need to be removed by professionals.
- Smoke damages. Clothing, carpet, and draperies absorb smoke, and the strong odor left behind will only get worse over time. Cleanup must take place at the source, and only after soot and water damage are removed. Thermal Fogging, Ozone treatment, and air-filtration along with specialty textile restoration and electronics restoration are the most common methods.
- Air ducts. Vent and duct cleaning will prevent lingering odors from spreading.
In the event of a fire at your home or business, call the professionals at SERVPRO of Warminster, Lansdale, and Blue Bell for help with fire damage restoration, water damage restoration, mold remediation, and so much more. We are here to help.
Storm Damage to your Property
Dealing with repairs and insurance companies after severe weather hits your property can be difficult. Homeowners can use the following tips to help tackle the storm damage caused by hard rains, flooding, or storm-related issues.
If you and your family were away from home when the storm hit, do not return until it has been confirmed safe. Contact a storm damage expert like SERVPRO of Lansdale; we’ll help you determine if your home is safe to return to.
You will need to contact your homeowners’ insurance adjuster as soon as possible. If your neighborhood has sustained widespread damage, find out if any special teams of insurance agents, relief workers, or contractors are coming to the area. Check your policy to find out what actions you need to take or talk to your agent to make sure you are following the proper procedures. Not following these actions correctly could result in a reduced claim. Inspect your property and make a list of all damages; take photographs of all noted damage if at all possible.
RECORDING AND DOCUMENTING
Document your neighbor’s damages, as well; this can prevent the insurance provider from downgrading your claim by saying the damage is from your neglect of maintenance or other unrelated issues by giving them a way to compare. Keep a record of all the communication you have with your insurance provider, and don’t do any unnecessary repair work yourself. Hire a trusted storm damage restoration service provider such as SERVPRO of Lansdale to handle any repairs.
BE SCAM FREE
Always check the adjuster’s identification. If you are evacuated, ask for money from your claim upfront. If they agree, you will be given a check for an amount that will be deducted from your final settlement. Some providers will automatically offer a partial payment early on during the process. Review it carefully and decline it if you feel uncomfortable with any part of it. Never be afraid to ask questions and to expect an answer that makes sense or seems fair.
Dealing with a storm's aftermath is stressful, but reacting properly will be an immense help and can prevent problems down the road.
The SERVPRO of Lansdale Team is ready to help 24/7. Call us for your fire or water damage issues at 215-368-4110.
courtesy of LinkedIn
Fire Prevention in your Garage
SERVPRO Fire Prevention Tips
The garage runs a close second to the kitchen when it comes to areas of the home that are a common source of fire damage. You store cars in the garage, and many people use this room for working on them, meaning there is gas or oil, or other flammable materials in this enclosed space. Add to this the clutter which goes with it and the fact that garages are storage spaces for flammable items, and you have the perfect place for fires to start.
As with anything else when it comes to fire damage in your garage, being proactive is the best defense to keep your home as safe as possible from fire. Fuels, fluids, and cleaners should be sealed properly, and flammable materials stored away from elements which are flammable as well.
If the worst has already happened and a fire broke out, you can call us at SERVPRO. We are a professionally trained fire damage remediation company, and we have the tools and knowledge to help you restore your home back to its original condition.
Electrical devices in a garage need to be used carefully. Do not overload the circuit box, and unplug any units when not in use. You should also have a fire extinguisher in your garage. Clear any clutter out of your garage, as it makes it safer when you are walking around, but also cuts down on the probability of a fire spreading in the event of an emergency.
Flammable liquids need to be stored in small amounts and away from heat sources of any kind such as space heaters, vents, and pilot lights. Also, keep propane tanks outdoors. They are equipped and made sturdy for outdoor storage.
After a fire, there are several forms of damage including smoke and soot, plus water damage from putting the fire out. SERVPRO technicians take care of all of it for you, restoring anything salvageable, cleaning up the smoke and soot, and drying out the area and your possessions.
Fires in garages can spread just as quickly, if not faster, than other areas of your home due to several flammable items. Give SERVPRO of Lansdale a call as soon as the fire is safely out so we can salvage all that is possible. You can reach us at any time you need by dialing 215.368.4110
Water Damage Prevention
Rain, rain, go away. We all know the months are coming when we will start to think of these words to that childhood song. Rain is necessary to nourish flowers and trees, and that’s great! But sometimes all that water can cause damage to your home or business.
Is your business or home ready? Let’s talk about ways to prepare.
Take a look at rain gutters. Clogged gutters will cause rainwater to back up, damaging your roof and walls.
Do a roof inspection. Are any shingles loose or damaged? Replace any that could be an issue to protect attic or workspace from water damage.
Check interior walls and ceilings for signs of water damage; this could be an indication of roof leaks.
Trim any trees and bushes next to your Belle Meade business. Be sure to cut back branches that could become waterlogged and break off, damaging property.
Ensure that all doors and windows are secure, and that weatherstripping is in good condition.
Look for water collecting around the foundation of your home or business, and take steps to redirect it, if needed, to avoid water damage.
If your home or business is located near flooding areas, stockpiling sandbags to protect your property and parking areas would be a good idea.
Make sure the city drains near your home or business are clear of debris and earth. Preparedness in the event of any kind of extreme weather is always a good idea, to protect your business and property from loss and damage. Taking the time to assess your situation and thinking ahead about what may come is a good way to keep your investment secure.
Call our team at SERVPRO of Lansdale, 215-368-4110 anytime, whether you need assistance with water damage, fire damage or mold prevention.
courtesy of LinkedIn
DIY Spring Cleaning Tips
Spring has arrived – which means it’s time to get your home in tip-top shape. A good, deep spring clean-up is a tradition that not only promotes wellness by keeping your environment clean and organized; it also helps carry the fresh-start feeling brought on by a new year well into the summer.
We’ve compiled some of the best DIY spring cleaning tips so you can deep clean your house and make it sparkle all year round.
Spring cleaning tips
Remove water stains with lemon for a natural faucet fix
This spring, make faucets clean and sparkly by rubbing a lemon half on the water stains. The citric acid helps remove hard water marks. Then, use the other half of the lemon for our next tip.
Clean your microwave by heating lemon juice and rinds in water
Cut a lemon into halves, squeeze the juice into 1/2 cup of water and drop the rinds into the mixture. Microwave for three minutes and let it stand for five minutes without opening the door. The trapped steam will loosen the grime, so you can wipe the microwave clean with less elbow grease.
Use white vinegar to beat shower head buildup
Looking for more natural ways to clean your bathroom? Vinegar can dissolve the mineral deposits accumulate in showerheads over time, causing reduced pressure and water flow. Fill a plastic bag with white vinegar, secure it over the showerhead with a rubber band and leave it overnight to get rid of buildup. Just be sure to run the shower before you hop in, or you risk smelling like vinegar all day.
Clean stainless steel sinks with baking soda
Simply wet your sink and faucet, sprinkle baking soda, and scrub with a sponge. If you need more heavy-duty scrubbing power, add salt to the baking soda.
Organize your fridge and cabinets with rotating turntables
Don’t limit rotating turntables and Lazy Susans to your tabletops. After discarding old condiments and spices, organize your pantries and refrigerator with this useful storage hack.
Place a wet dryer sheet on your ceramic stovetop to remove burnt-on residue
Dryer sheets are non-abrasive and a great way to remove burnt-on food from your stove. Place the wet dryer sheet on your stovetop at least 15 minutes before rubbing the gunk away.
Clean your grill with an onion.
Get your grill cleaned up and ready for the warm weather. First, heat it up and spray some white vinegar onto the grates to help loosen the residue. Then, scrub the area firmly using half an onion. The acid from the onion will rid your grill of any leftover remnants.
SERVPRO of Lansdale is "Ready For Any Size Disaster" 215.368.4110
Mold Growth Prevention
We all know that a humidity level in your home that is too high can promote mold growth. Mold grows quickly in damp conditions, establishing a significant colony within 24-48 hours. Allergens and irritants are released as it spreads, and in some cases the situation can become toxic to those with respiratory problems. Children, older people, and pets can be especially susceptible to this danger.
Using a dehumidifier in your home can help to prevent this situation. Optimal humidity levels are between 30-50%, with 45% being the best level possible. A dehumidifier will help to maintain your indoor humidity at a comfortable level, which saves you money and helps to stunt or prevent any mold growth. Small units are available at reasonable prices, so you can put one in every room of the house that is devoted to water: the bath, laundry, and the kitchen!
Making sure your HVAC system is running at its most efficient will help to keep down your humidity levels, as well. Vents should be cleaned before the wetter months and replacing filters before every season is always a good idea.
Running fans when it’s humid outside helps to keep the damp down and cool you off at the same time. Circulating air keeps everything drier. If it’s more humid inside than out, crack a window.
Give your houseplants some outside time, as well; potting soil is wet, of course, since you must water your plants, so putting them out in the sunshine can be helpful. The leaves of a houseplant can also sustain mold growth, and you will want to keep an eye on that. There are natural solutions that can be applied to take care of this issue.
Call SERVPRO of Lansdale at (215) 368-4110 for all your larger cleanup projects after a fire or flood. We are also experts in mold remediation!
courtesy of LinkedIn
Smoke and Soot Cleanup
Soot damage to a bedroom wall.
Smoke and soot is very invasive and can penetrate various cavities within your home, causing hidden damage and odor. Our smoke damage expertise and experience allows us to inspect and accurately assess the extent of the damage to develop a comprehensive plan of action.
Smoke and soot facts:
- Hot smoke migrates to cooler areas and upper levels of a structure.
- Smoke flows around plumbing systems, seeping through the holes used by pipes to go from floor to floor.
- The type of smoke may greatly affect the restoration process.
Different Types of Smoke
There are two different types of smoke–wet and dry. As a result, there are different types of soot residue after a fire. Before restoration begins, SERVPRO of Lansdale will test the soot to determine which type of smoke damage occurred. The cleaning procedures will then be based on the information identified during pretesting. Here is some additional information:
Wet Smoke – Plastic and Rubber
- Low heat, smoldering, pungent odor, sticky, smeary. Smoke webs are more difficult to clean.
Dry Smoke – Paper and Wood
- Fast burning, high temperatures, heat rises therefore smoke rises.
Protein Fire Residue – Produced by evaporation of material rather than from a fire
- Virtually invisible, discolors paints and varnishes, extreme pungent odor.
Our Fire Damage Restoration Services
Since each smoke and fire damage situation is a little different, each one requires a unique solution tailored for the specific conditions. We have the equipment, expertise, and experience to restore your fire and smoke damage. We will also treat your family with empathy and respect and your property with care.
Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call Us Today - 215-368-4110
SERVPRO of Lansdale is an IICRC Firm
We are an IICRC Certified Firm
SERVPRO of Lansdale is an IICRC firm. The Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) creates the standards for the restoration industry and provides training and certification to restoration companies. IICRC Certified Firms have the right to display the IICRC Certified Logo.
IICRC Certified Firms must
• Present accurate information to consumers and conduct business with honesty and integrity.
• Require a technician on all jobs who has been formally trained and passed all required tests.
• Require a continuing education program to keep technicians up-to-date on the latest changes in the industry.
• Maintain liability insurance to protect all parties in the event of an accident.
• Maintain a written complaint policy and agree to Better Business Bureau or similar arbitration to resolve disputes, and accept the conclusions and recommendations of arbitration.
The IICRC Develops The Standards For The Restoration Industry
The IICRC has been the driving force in establishing the main industry standards and reference guides for professional carpet cleaning, water damage restoration and mold remediation. These IICRC standards take years to develop and require the coordination of experts in the field: manufacturers, industry organizations, insurance professionals, training schools, contractors, and public health professionals.
Every five years, the standards are reviewed and updated. The water damage restoration field changes rapidly with advancements in technology and science, and therefore the standards must evolve to keep pace.
About SERVPRO of Lansdale
SERVPRO of Lansdale specializes in the cleanup and restoration of residential and commercial property after a fire, smoke or water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration and we are an IICRC Certified Firm. We believe in continuous training: from initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.
Storm Causes Fallen Tree in Hatfield
Fallen tree caused damage to the roof. A temporary tarp can help to prevent further interior damage to the home.
SERVPRO of Lansdale specializes in storm and flood damage restoration. Our crews are highly trained and we use specialized equipment to restore your property to its pre-storm condition. This includes emergency tarp and board up services.
Since we are locally owned and operated, we are able to respond quicker with the right resources, which is extremely important. A fast response lessens the damage, limits further damage, and reduces the restoration cost.
Resources to Handle Floods and Storms
When storms hit Hatfield, we can scale our resources to handle a large storm or flooding disaster. We can access equipment and personnel from a network of 1,650 Franchises across the country and elite Disaster Recovery Teams that are strategically located throughout the United States.
Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today 215-368-4110
Faster to your Lansdale Water Damage Event
This flooded basement was caused by a frozen pipe that burst.
Flooding and water emergencies don’t wait for regular business hours and neither do we. SERVPRO of Lansdale provides emergency cleaning and restoration services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week—including all holidays.
Faster To Any Size Disaster
Flooding and water damage is very invasive. Water quickly spreads throughout your home and gets absorbed into floors, walls, furniture, and more. SERVPRO of Lansdale arrives quickly and starts the water extraction process almost immediately. This immediate response helps to minimize the damage and the cleaning and restoration costs.
Need Emergency Service? Call Us 24/7 – 215-368-4110
- Water quickly spreads throughout your property, saturating everything in its path.
- Water is absorbed into walls, floors, upholstery, and belongings.
- Furniture finishes may bleed, causing permanent staining on carpets.
- Photographs, books, and other paper goods start to swell and warp.
Hours 1 - 24:
- Drywall begins to swell and break down.
- Metal surfaces begin to tarnish.
- Furniture begins to swell and crack.
- Dyes and inks from cloth and paper goods spread and stain.
- A musty odor appears.
48 Hours to 1 Week:
- Mold and mildew may grow and spread.
- Doors, windows, and studs swell and warp.
- Metal begins to rust and corrode.
- Furniture warps and shows signs of mold.
- Paint begins to blister.
- Wood flooring swells and warps.
- Serious biohazard contamination is possible.
More Than 1 Week:
- Restoration time and cost increase dramatically; replacing contaminated materials and structural rebuilding may be extensive.
- Structural safety, mold growth, and biohazard contaminants pose serious risks to occupants.
About SERVPRO of Lansdale
SERVPRO of Lansdale specializes in the cleanup and restoration of residential and commercial property after a fire, smoke or water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property