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FAQs About the Mold Containment Process

3/4/2019 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation FAQs About the Mold Containment Process Stop mold spreading in your home.

Mold contamination can be a major issue for homeowners in Cookeville, TN, and the process of mold remediation can seem overwhelming. However, understanding the process of mold containment can be helpful to homeowners.

How Is Mold Contained?

After mold is discovered in a home, homeowners often find it helpful to seek out professionals in mold remediation. After assessing the home, the process of containment begins, which often includes:

  • Decreasing the air flow in the area(s) affected by mold by turning off air conditioning or heat and closing windows in the home
  • Keeping all areas within the home dry as possible
  • Using equipment such as negative air chambers in order to keep the spores in one place

Why Is Containment Important?

Containing mold often requires the use of various strategies and pieces of equipment. Mold containment is generally beneficial after mold contamination is found in a home for the following reasons:

  • Reduces the likelihood of mold spreading to areas of the home that haven’t yet been impacted by mold growth, therefore preventing structural damage and damage to items within the home
  • Stops mold from further damaging affected areas
  • Lowers the overall costs of the restoration process by preventing new damage

What Happens After Containment?

The mold remediation process doesn’t stop after the mold is contained. Once professionals are certain that the mold is contained, the process of restoring the home and items damaged by mold really begins. Since mold spores exist everywhere, air filtration devices are used to bring the mold spores down to a safe level. Then, items that have been damaged by mold are removed from the home and are cleaned, and either restored or replaced. Finally, restoration of the home begins.

Containment is one of the most important steps in restoring a home affected by mold contamination. Understanding what the mold containment process entails, why it’s important and the steps that follow can help homeowners prepare for mold remediation.

Why SERVPRO’s Claims Inventory System Might Be an Insurance Agent’s Best Friend

2/19/2019 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO Why SERVPRO’s Claims Inventory System Might Be an Insurance Agent’s Best Friend SERVPRO can provide you with the tools you need to do the best for both your client and the agency.

Why SERVPRO’s Claims Inventory System Might Be An Insurance Agent’s Best Friend

When a client suffers damage to their Carthage, TN home, they will undoubtedly file an insurance claim. While working through the claim, you may end up accumulating quite a bit of related materials. In order to make the process easier for you, SERVPRO has a claims inventory system to help you keep track of any necessary information. These are a few things that they can provide for you.

1. Pictures of Damaged Items

During the restoration process, SERVPRO will take pictures of any damaged items which will make it easier for you when determining what the client has lost. They will provide you with an itemized loss inventory that includes photos of items and an Excel formatted report.

2. A Complete Job File

Along with the loss inventory, the Claims Information Center can give you an electronic job file with information you might need to complete the insurance claim. This will include loss photos, the first notice of loss as well as a detailed estimate of repair costs. They will also provide scanned copies of important paperwork and forms. It can be emailed to you or, if you prefer, you can receive a hard copy.

3. Online Access to Files

In order to make your work easier, as the insurance agent, you will have online access to all files related to the job. Having this information when you need it can help you complete the process more quickly. It can also help you to be sure you are making the best, most informed decision when it comes to your client’s claim.

When you are working on an insurance claim with your client, you want to have the most accurate data so you can make the right call for him or her. Using a damage restoration service that helps in this area can make it easier. SERVPRO can provide you with the tools you need to do the best for both your client and the agency.

Black Water 101: 4 Situations in Which You Need To Treat Flood Waters as a Health Hazard

2/14/2019 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Black Water 101: 4 Situations in Which You Need To Treat Flood Waters as a Health Hazard Contact SERVPRO when dealing with black water.

Flood Waters often Considered Black Water

If your business in Cookeville, TN, has recently experienced any flooding, you are likely already worried about the damage the water has caused to your building. However, you also need to be concerned about the safety of the water itself since flood water is often considered black water. This label is used to categorize contaminated water that poses a serious health hazard to anyone who comes into contact with it. If the flood was caused by any of the four following situations, get help immediately.

1. Sewage Leak

Sewage leaks due to issues with a septic tank or a burst sewer main can quickly lead to a flooding and needs to be addressed immediately by a storm damage restoration specialist. It is important that the building is immediately evacuated and that any items contaminated by the water are not touched.

2. Toilet Backup

A toilet that is clogged or experiencing a backup can overflow and flood the bathroom before anyone is aware of what happened. Although you likely will be fine cleaning a small overflow yourself, a large-scale backup can post a health hazard. It is important to keep all customers and staff outside of the affected area.

3. Flooding From Outside

If flood water from outside, including water from overflowing rivers or streams, enter your building, you need to assume it is contaminated water. This is true even if you don’t know the source of the water or don’t identify any visible sewage.

4. Stagnant Water

If flooding occurs with your business, it can become black water if not quickly addressed. Water that stands in one place for an extended period of time can harbor harmful bacteria and become a serious health threat.

Although you might be eager to retrieve your items or enter your building to examine the damage, you will need to wait if you suspect the flood water might be contaminated. Remember to always leave the area and contact a professional when dealing with black water!

4 Key Points Regarding Home Fires and Insurance Coverage

2/4/2019 (Permalink)

Fire Damage 4 Key Points Regarding Home Fires and Insurance Coverage Ask your insurance agent if you are covered

Home Fires And Insurance Coverage

A home fire can severely damage or even destroy your property. Fortunately, most homeowner’s insurance policies cover fire damage, helping to reduce out-of-pocket restoration costs. Because coverage varies, it’s important to familiarize yourself with specific policy details, exclusions and additional options that may provide enhanced protection.

1. Common Insurance Coverage

When it comes to fires, insurance typically covers costs associated with repairing or rebuilding the dwelling as well as replacing damaged possessions. If your home is temporarily uninhabitable, many policies also provide additional living expenses to fund interim housing.

2. Liability Protection

Liability protection is another common component of many policies. Possessing this coverage can be important, especially if someone is injured at your residence or the actions of a household member spark the home fire.

3. Vacant Home Fires

Some residents of Carthage, TN , may own dwellings that are vacant for a portion of the year. While the exact definition varies, a residence is often deemed vacant if it’s unoccupied for more than 30 consecutive days. If you own a vacation home, this distinction can be important because your insurance provider may deny a claim if it can prove the incident was a vacant home fire.

To safeguard your investment and financial security, you should discuss your options with an insurance representative. You may be able to include an endorsement on your current coverage or purchase vacant home insurance.

4. Arson

Intentionally setting a residence on fire is a crime that nullifies insurance coverage. To combat fraud and rule out arson, your provider will likely investigate the cause of any reported inferno. Suspicious behavior, such as increasing coverage or making several expensive purchases, prior to the blaze may also cause your provider to question and possibly deny your claim.

A devastating home fire is a potential threat that many homeowners fear. Recognizing exclusions and ensuring you have adequate coverage for every property you own can spare you from costly out-of-pocket expenses, providing some peace of mind.

Understanding Fungus: Mold and Mildew

1/22/2019 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation Understanding Fungus: Mold and Mildew Avoid mold damage in your Cookeville, TN home

The Difference Between Mold And Mildew

Mold damage may be one of the greatest fears for any homeowner. An infestation can cause thousands in damage, and if a result of lingering issues, homeowners’ insurance may not cover the costs. While it is a fear, most don’t understand the difference between mold and mildew. One is hard to remedy, possibly requiring a specialist, and the other is a simple fix, likely resolved with a store-bought cleaner.

1. Size

Mildew growth can be subtle, often manifesting in small areas and only on the surface. Mold, on the other hand, is more predominant, and when it appears on the surface of a wall, you likely have a more significant issue in the wall cavity.

2. Color

When you encounter actual mold growth and mold damage, the color can be a dead giveaway as to whether it is mildew or mold. Mold is typically black and green. However, it may even be shades of blue and yellow, depending on the surfaces it has invaded. Mildew generally is only one of two colors, either gray or white.

3. Texture

The most apparent difference between mold and mildew is the texture. Mold is overall more textured and is likely fuzzy in appearance. Mildew is flat and appears as more of a stain than a growth.

4. Spread

While both mold and mildew spread quickly, mildew, as a surface fungus, tends to be a little more manageable. Mold, because of its nature, often develops in areas that are not easily visible, meaning that when it is discovered, it is more of an infestation. If you find mold, there is likely more lurking behind drywall and under floorboards. In most cases, you may need a mold remediation specialist in the Cookeville, TN, area to asses the damage.

Mold damage is no laughing matter, and it can lead to many problems if not handled properly. However, not every fungal growth is mold. Mildew is a manageable growth that can be resolved with basic household cleaners.

What To Expect From Your Insurance Company After a Broken Pipe

1/17/2019 (Permalink)

Water Damage What To Expect From Your Insurance Company After a Broken Pipe Not many insurance policies will cover the cost to fix a broken pipe in Carthage, TN

You walk into your kitchen and step into an inch of standing water. Upon quick inspection, you discover that a broken pipe under the sink is the cause of the flood. Your mind automatically starts figuring how much this is going to cost. Will your insurance policy cover part of it, and if so, how much?

Likely Coverage

Your insurance company probably considers plumbing repair to be part of regular home maintenance. Therefore, not many insurance policies will cover the cost to fix a broken pipe. However, the water damage that occurs as a result of the leak is a different story. Most homeowners’ policies cover water damage to:

  • Flooring, including tiles and carpet
  • Cabinets
  • Walls
  • Ceilings

Your insurance adjuster in Carthage, TN, knows that water damage only gets worse the longer it stands. The company has a vested interest, therefore, in making sure you have the means to fix problems caused by the flood as soon as possible.

Possible Denial

While your insurance coverage should take care of the damage to your home, there are certain instances where your claim could be denied. If the water volume is significant and rises quickly, the damage is probably too great to be covered by a standard property policy. You may need to depend on your separate policy designed specifically for flooding in that case. If the adjuster can tell that the damage was caused by a long-term leak that resulted in a broken pipe, or if the pipe broke as the result of improper heating or insulation around it, the insurance company may see this as neglect. Your claim is likely to be denied if it seems that the water damage was caused by your failure to fix an existing problem.

The key to getting your insurance claim accepted after a flood from a broken pipe is timely reporting. Call your agent, and then call water remediation specialists who can start repairs quickly.

Fire Suppression System: Performing a Water Flow Test

1/10/2019 (Permalink)

Commercial Fire Suppression System: Performing a Water Flow Test A fire sprinkler system is required in commercial properties

Fire Suppression System: Performing a Water Flow Test

A fire sprinkler is a common and often required fire prevention tool in commercial properties. However, it is necessary to test your system at least a couple of times a year and have a full-blown inspection at least once a year. To check your system, follow these four steps.

1. Notify Proper Authorities

If your fire suppression system is connected to a central alarm, then it is necessary to notify the property authorities about your test. While it may not be apparent, a test of your system will notify the authorities, and it will not come through as a false alarm. Reach out to your alarm provider and your local fire department to ensure that they do not respond to the test alarm.

2. Open the Test Valve

Every fire sprinkler system will have an inspector’s test valve. To test the water flow within the system, you merely turn the valve so that it is in line with the water pipe. This will pressurize the system, creating a controlled alarm without dousing your property with water.

3. Wait For Alarm To Sound and Confirm

Once the valve is open, you will need to wait about 60 seconds, at which point the alarm will sound. When the alarm sounds, call your alarm provider to ensure that the signal was received.

4. Close the Valve and Notify Authorities

Once you have confirmed that the alarm is operating correctly, you can slowly close the valve. After the valve is shut and the signal is off, call the fire department and your alarm company to let them know the test is finished.

Additionally, once everything is off, walk your property and check for any leaks that may have occurred during the test. If you find leaks, you can call a fire remediation specialist in the Cookeville, TN, area for not only the fire sprinkler cleanup but also to replace any damaged lines.

A fire sprinkler system is a lifesaving piece of equipment. Performing water flow tests and scheduling annual inspections will ensure the functionality of your system for years to come.

3 Steps for Minimizing Water Damage

12/18/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage 3 Steps for Minimizing Water Damage Flooring damaged by water loss in a Cookeville,TN kitchen

3 Steps for Minimizing Water Damage

It doesn't take long for a kitchen leak to turn into kitchen flooding. When you have unwanted water in the home and while you're waiting for water damage restoration professionals to arrive, take the following steps to minimize or prevent damage. After addressing immediate circumstances, don't forget to contact your insurance agent.

1. Maintain Safety

Determine whether it's safe for you and your family to remain in the home. Sometimes flooding water in home settings leads to slips and falls or electrical hazards. Be careful about lifting water-logged objects. Stick to repair tasks that are you know are safe; don't mess with gas supply lines or work in areas where water and electricity are both present.

2. Shut Off the Water

Most of the water-related repairs you do in your home won't require more than shutting of the indoor supply valve. However, you should also know where your main water supply is located. There should be an indoor cutoff valve beneath the fixtures in your home. For instance, if you're completing a kitchen repair, check under the sink for a knob connected to the water pipes. The shutoff switch for many appliances, such as the dishwasher, is located on the appliance itself.

3. Remove Excess Water

Mop or vacuum water (with a wet-dry shop vac) as quickly as possible to prevent water from sitting on wood or carpeted floors. Remove wet furnishings and set up as much ventilation as possible to get the area dried out. Portable items, such as rugs, fine art, couch cushions, small tables, and appliances, should be carried into a dry area to prevent further risk of damage.

Water damage restoration professionals can do a lot toward getting your home back into good condition. When you take quick action to turn off the water and clean up as much of the flooding as possible before the Cookeville, TN, professionals arrive, your home will be in even better shape.

Helpful Hints to Minimize Fire Risks While Cooking

12/18/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Helpful Hints to Minimize Fire Risks While Cooking Don’t overfill your pans with oil when you cook on the stove

Of all the rooms in your home where you gather and spend time, the kitchen may be the most popular. Not only do you prepare and eat meals here, but it’s a common place to visit with one another and with visitors. It shouldn’t surprise anyone to know that fires occur here often. Many of these mishaps start due to poor cooking techniques or simply not paying attention while at the stove or oven. Here are some tips to help avoid fires from starting in your Carthage, TN, kitchen.

Make Sure Your Appliances Are in Tip-Top Shape

You no doubt use your stove, oven and other kitchen appliances frequently. Over time, like anything else, they’ll begin to falter. Faulty appliances are a big cause for fire damage. Make sure they are working properly and efficiently.

  • Have a trained professional service your oven and stove if you detect any issues.
  • Service your appliances if they are more than 10 years old.
  • Clean your appliances, including the toaster, regularly.

Be Careful With Grease

If you enjoy frying foods, you probably use some type of cooking oil. While this can help concoct some delicious meals, it can also lead to a grease fire. Don’t overfill your pans with oil when you cook on the stove. Also, make sure you promptly clean up any cooking oil spills.

Don’t Walk Away

It’s easy to let ringing phones, television shows, knocks on the door or needy children distract you. However, don’t ever leave your food unattended on the stove. Heat can build up quickly and can ignite and catch fire nearby. Of all the tips to help prevent fires

Watch out for Towels

People typically hang towels near the oven or stove. If you do this, make sure they are far enough away that they don’t pose a hazard.

If you have to call in an expert to clean up after a fire, there are trained professionals who can help. However, if you are aware of these tips, you can keep your kitchen and home free of fire concerns.

How Do I Know If I Have Mold?

11/30/2018 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO How Do I Know If I Have Mold? Musty mold odor call a mold restoration company in Gordonsville,TN

Finding out if you have mold is easy if it’s where you can see it. But mold is tricky and likes to hang out in the dark, damp spaces many business owners never think to check. You can’t check everywhere, so how can you figure out if you have mold? The best way is to hire a Gordonsville,TN, indoor environmental specialist. If that’s not an option, here are some tips to figuring out if you have mold.

You Have Allergic Symptoms

The full health threat of mold is unclear, but it’s pretty well accepted that mold can trigger allergic reactions. Those include:

  • Sneezing
  • Sore Eyes
  • Nasal Congestion

and more. If you or your employees have allergies that only seem to crop up when you’re inside, there’s a good chance there could be mold growing somewhere in your building. An indoor environmental specialist can help you make a clear determination.

Musty, Mold Odor
Believe it or not, a moldy smell is often the only hint that these pesky spores are growing in your building. A mold smell is best described as musky, damp and mildew-like. It may tickle your nose, or simply be unpleasant. Either way, don't ignore mold odors even if you can’t see mold. Have an expert do a basic examination and a mold test sooner rather than later.

Signs of Water Problems
A lingering drip, condensation on pipes – there are lots of little things businesses learn to ignore because they aren’t causing trouble. But long-term moisture problems will almost always lead to mold growth over time. If you have known water problems, however minor, you might want to have an indoor environmental specialist take a look.
Detecting mold requires vigilance. Talk to your local mold specialist and keep your eyes open for the subtle signs to learn how to spot and shut down mold before it really gets started.