Recent Posts

How to Pick PPE for Mold Cleanup

7/31/2022 (Permalink)

A professional disinfector in overalls processes the walls from mold with a spatula. Protect yourself while cleaning mold

You Know How Basements Often Have "That" Smell?

It's a little damp, a little musty, but all basements smell like that, right? They can because of the amount of moisture found in basements, but they really shouldn't if you're controlling moisture effectively. However, maybe you've discovered a leaking pipe or window in Conroe, TX, and now there is mold damage in your basement to clean up ASAP. Before you start, you need the correct personal protective equipment or PPE. Depending on the extent of cleanup, you will require different PPE to keep you safe. The EPA has a great guide that categorizes cleanup as:

  • Minimum
  • Limited
  • Full

Minimum
For minimum cleanup, the affected area should not be greater than ten square feet. Face masks, such as N-95 respirators, are necessary, plus goggles or some form of eye protection, and gloves. N-95 respirators prevent you from inhaling mold spores while you're cleaning.

Limited
In a limited cleanup, you need to wear the same PPE you would wear for a minimum cleanup project — face masks, goggles, and gloves — and you should add overalls that protect your clothing. A limited cleanup area should not exceed 100 square feet. For a project of this size, it would be best to contact a mold remediation specialist to ensure that you do, in fact, have the proper materials and PPE to tackle the project. A smaller area can still have a large quantity of mold, and it is important to ensure that you can complete the job completely to avoid future problems.

Full
A full cleanup project requires heavy-duty protective equipment to handle mold damage. You will need a full-face mask with a respirator, gloves, shoe coverings, head covering, and disposable clothing. For a project like this, it is strongly recommended to contact a professional for help.
Face masks aren't the only piece of protection that you need when cleaning up mold in your home. It is important to consider the extent of the mold damage before beginning so you can protect yourself appropriately.

3 Tips for Preventing Plumbing Problems

7/23/2022 (Permalink)

Plumber with a clipboard writing down Regular inspection is key to finding and stopping a plumbing issue

Three Ways To Avoid Plumbing Issues

Unwanted water, in the form of natural disasters or plumbing problems, can cause major damage. As a business owner, you strive to keep your building in good condition by performing regular maintenance. Water issues can quickly become costly repairs; therefore, it’s wise to be proactive about preventing issues. Here are three tips for preventing plumbing complications.

1. Delegate
One of the best things you can do as a manager or business owner is delegate responsibilities. Preventing major water damage involves ongoing inspection and maintenance. You simply don’t have time to handle this job on your own. Hire a maintenance manager and staff to oversee all items related to facility maintenance. Having individuals assigned to prevent plumbing problems will save your The Woodlands, TX, company money in the long run.

2. Educate
Once you’ve hired a maintenance manager or team, it’s important to provide training and education. Employees must know the common areas to check for plumbing issues and understand that it’s critical to fix a broken pipe, check for water spots and investigate low water pressure. All of these instances, and more, indicate a potential water problem.

3. Inspect
Regular inspection is key to finding and stopping a plumbing issue. Some of the areas that should be regularly inspected include:

  • Toilets, sinks and showers
  • Underneath sinks
  • Water heaters
  • Ceilings
  • Water main
  • Anywhere with exposed water pipes
  • The ground outside, especially near sewer pipes

Your maintenance staff should be trained to frequently inspect these areas, as well as any other plumbing areas specific to your property. It’s also wise to have the contact information available for a water damage restoration company. Trained restoration specialists are Faster to Any Size Disaster and can restore your property quickly and correctly.
Plumbing problems can quickly cause expensive water damage. Be proactive in preventing issues by delegating responsibilities, educating employees, and inspecting your building on a regular basis.

Commercial Generators Are Not the Same as Portable Ones

7/18/2022 (Permalink)

Commercial power generator What kind of generator does your business need?

What kind of generator does your business need? There are many available, and it can be very confusing. Most of them are small, portable units meant for light applications or brief residential power outages. Typically, they’ll have less than 10,000 watts and will require hand-cranking.
However, businesses in Porter Heights,TX, often need something more substantial. In most cases, the ideal unit for mid-to-large operations is a standby diesel or natural gas one.

Types of Generators

Generators can cost a few hundred dollars – or a few hundred thousand. Some common features include

  • Portable or fixed
  • Standby on on-demand
  • Diesel or gasoline
  • Natural gas or propane

Portable Gasoline Generators Are Highly Economical
Small businesses using under 10,000 watts can often get by with a basic portable gasoline generator. These are often started by pulling on a rope, so they need to be run every other month so that they’re easier to crank up.
Some may include a battery for easy starting, so it’s important to keep that charged. You typically run extension cords to whatever needs power directly from the unit.

Most Businesses Need Standby Generators
Standby generators are designed to turn on automatically as soon as a power outage occurs. They can use either gasoline, diesel, natural gas or propane, and in some cases (such as natural gas), they may run indefinitely if connected to a local service pipeline. They’re required by law to be run through a transfer switch. Without one, it can electrocute line workers who are sent to fix the cause of the power outage.

Generator Problems
The easiest way to avoid problems is to get the correct unit. It should match your wattage needs and the best available fuel source.
Diesel generators usually last the longest. However, they require tanks and can run out of fuel. Many businesses are switching to natural gas, since pipelines are run in urban areas, allowing for indefinite use.
If you’ve had storm damage to your business that required the use of a generator, you’ll need to make an insurance claim for the repairs and hire an approved restoration company. SERVPRO is Faster to Any Size Disaster.

How SERVPRO Benefits Insurance Adjusters and Clients

6/28/2022 (Permalink)

Technician using a vacuum extractor on a soaked carpet floor. You can have peace of mind by working with a restoration company with IICRC validation.

How SERVPRO Benefits Insurance Adjusters and Clients

Your job as an insurance adjuster is to serve your New Caney, TX, clients quickly and professionally. You work hard to ensure each claim is completed on time while keeping costs down. SERVPRO is a preferred vendor for many agencies because the company has been building relationships with insurance companies for decades.

National Accounts Guidelines
Each location around the country must meet specific standards. They include:

  • Background checks for employees
  • Internal audits for quality assurance
  • Proof of work with completed job files

Insurance adjusters and professional restoration company employees need step-by-step, transparent communication. It is also part of the guidelines for national accounts.
National Accounts Managers are the point of contact for insurance professionals. They can walk you through the claims process and answer any questions.

IICRC Participation
The Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification is a nonprofit organization. It upholds the standards of the restoration industry and helps shape its policies. You can have peace of mind by working with a restoration company with IICRC validation.

Franchisee Training
Locations around the country participate in regional and national training. Restoration and insurance industry professionals learn mitigation, reconstruction and restoration skills at a national training facility. The training process is part of the company's commitment to excellence.
New franchisees participate in a 15-day training program for owners. Employees can also take part in self-paced restoration and cleaning courses. Whether they learn as new employees or continue their education, the company provides classes for them.
The business offers classes year-round as part of an IICRC Training School. Courses cover techniques including water and fire restoration and drying techniques.

Support for Your Client's Insurance Claim
Working with a preferred vendor can help you, the insurance adjuster, serve your clients better. Partnering with a company with decades of experience can help you complete the claims process efficiently and stay within budget.

Flood Aftermath: 3 Ways the Professionals Will Clean and Disinfect Your Home

6/21/2022 (Permalink)

fans placed against drywall When placing drying equipment in your home helps prevent mold growth.

Flood Aftermath

If a flood has hit your Egypt, TX, home, you might wonder what steps to take. Because flood water is often full of harmful chemicals and raw sewage, you should never attempt to clean things up yourself. Instead, contact water damage specialists to repair and restore your house. Here are three ways they will clean and disinfect your home and ensure it looks as good as new.

1. Remove Soaked Materials
The experts cleaning your home will use protective gear and thick trash bags to properly dispose of everything that is damaged. Mold growth is a significant problem after a flood, and even something that might look okay on the outside could have dangerous growths on the inside, so many of your belongings must be thrown away.
Remember that sewage loss often occurs during floods, so there could be harmful bacteria on everything the water touches. Never grab something with your bare hands until a professional tells you it is safe to do so.

2. Prevent Mold Growth
After removing all of your damaged items, the professionals will air out your home and use industrial fans to help prevent mold from growing. As part of the mitigation efforts, they will also remove the drywall damaged in the flood. When removing the drywall, they will also take approximately a foot of wall above the water line to ensure there is little chance of future bacteria growth.

3. Scrub Walls and Floors
As the final step in the clean-up process, the professionals will scrub every surface with powerful cleaners and sanitizers to remove the surface dirt and kill any lingering bacteria that might harm your family. They will wear safety gear and use high-powered equipment that helps get the cleaning materials into every nook and cranny.
Dealing with the aftermath of a flood doesn't have to be full of fear and uncertainty. Relying on the professionals will have your home back up and running in no time, and you won't have to worry about potential mold growth in the future.

3 Space Heater Safety Tips

6/7/2022 (Permalink)

Space Heater Safety tips for space heaters.

Three Safety Tips for Space Heaters

Certain rooms in your Rayford, TX, home may be difficult to heat because of their size or lack of heating vents and ductwork in the area. Space heaters may solve this issue; however, misuse of these units causes hundreds of fires every year, so before you decide to use them in your home, learning how to avoid blazes caused by burned space heaters can help reduce the risk of property damage. 

1. Use Newer Models 
Some newer space heater models have an auto-shutoff feature that ensures the unit turns itself off if you or one of your family members forgets. Replacing older models or those with limited safety features can prevent fires, so shopping around for newer units before the cold weather comes can help you feel more confident when it comes to your family's safety. 

2. Leave Space Around the Heater 
Space heater fires sometimes occur because there is not enough space around the unit, causing it to overheat and catch the clutter around it on fire. Once a burned space heater catches fire, the resulting blaze can spread quickly. Leave at least a foot of space on all sides of a heater and do not operate it pushed into a corner or up against a wall, even if it has an auto-shutoff feature. 

3. Avoid Using a Damaged or Burned Space Heater
Before using a stored space heater for the first time, check it over for problems such as a frayed electrical cord or signs of scorching on the metal heating components. You can also ask a smoke cleanup and fire restoration company to help you decide whether your home's space heaters are safe or if you need to replace them. 
Heating your Rayford, TX, home with the help of space heaters is an inexpensive way to provide bedrooms and other rooms with supplemental heat. Keeping the above safety tips in mind can help you operate these units safely and reduce the risk of a costly house fire. 

5 Absolute Musts for Cleaning Sewer Damage

5/27/2022 (Permalink)

Toilet overflow A toilet overflow can cause major damage to your property.

5 Things You Must Do If You Have Sewer Damage

Toilet overflows and backups bring water onto the premises and contaminate the location with Category three fluid. Fraught with bacteria and fungus, this liquid penetrates structural materials, making the property in Shenandoah, TX, hazardous to employees and customers. To sanitize the establishment, commercial owners must complete a thorough sewer cleanup. Here are five essential steps to getting the place back in business.

1. Understand the Depth of the Problem
Moisture isn't always visible, especially when a sewer backup seeps into the ground or walls. Use a moisture reader to determine the extent of the saturation. Draw a line a few feet above the current readings to guide your next stages. It's best to treat more of the area to ensure cleaning is sufficient.

2. Remove Soaked Structures
Spores harbor deep within porous objects, especially drywall and carpet, making sewer cleanup difficult. Cleaners such as bleach and soap do not absorb well; thus, they cannot eradicate the organisms. It's best to extract anything drenched to safeguard the space from future growth. Replace it after you complete the rest of the stages.
Be careful during these evaluations. The highly infested water should not be touched or handled without proper PPE. Wear gloves, protective clothing and goggles at all times.

3. Consult Content Cleaning Crews
The flooded toilet may have impacted other rooms as the moisture permeated into an office or retail space. If the dampness affected vital electronics and documents, reach out to a water restoration company. The specialists can use sophisticated technology to sanitize and salvage the belongings.

4. Air Everything Out
A dry room inhibits spore growth, so create adequate circulation with air movers or fans. Run multiple dehumidifiers to pull humidity from the air and framework. Test the moisture levels again before proceeding.

5. Wash Nonporous Items
Care for nonabsorbent valuables by washing them with soap and water. Also, apply bleach or an antimicrobial spray to kill lingering germs.
Work swiftly and carefully when dealing with a commercial sewer cleanup. Focus on gutting sullied materials and airing out the location. The right steps get your operations back up and running.

Tips for Dealing With Mold in Your Business

5/22/2022 (Permalink)

Close - up of black mold If you find evidence of mold in your Conroe, TX business, it's important to have the area evaluated.

Commercial Mold

If you notice a musty odor in a bathroom or other location in your building, you may benefit from this discussion about commercial mold. Moisture-seeking microscopic fungi are the cause of a mold infestation. They thrive in humid locations, such as laundry rooms, bathrooms or utility areas. Their spores multiply, and they can infest a large area in as little as 72 hours. The presence of mold can also point to an unknown water leak or other moisture problem.
Mold is plentiful and beneficial in nature because it breaks down organic substances in soils. Certain types of mold, such as black mold, can be toxic and quite damaging to your property, so it’s important to know what to look for.

What To Look For
Mold often comes with a mildewy type of odor, and your best mold detector may be your nose. Mold can present as irregular patches of varying colors on walls, ceilings or wooden areas. Here are some locations inside your business where mold could be found:

  • Crawl spaces and basements
  • Drywall surfaces
  • Book covers and pages
  • Sink and shower tile
  • Carpets

If you discover evidence or even just suspect black mold, it’s important to act quickly. The earlier you catch it, the easier the mold cleanup will be.

What To Do if You Suspect Mold
If you find evidence of mold in your Conroe, TX, business, it’s important to have the area evaluated by a mold remediation expert. They can use various testing protocols and recommend the best cleanup methods for your unique facility. It may be beneficial to avoid the area and keep it ventilated until you receive some professional help.
Mold is a beneficial substance that can be damaging in the wrong environment. Whether you suspect black mold or a less serious form, your best course is to get some assistance with confirming the diagnosis and developing the cleanup protocol. Once you begin the cleanup process, it won’t be long before you have restored your building and your peace of mind.

How To Prepare for a Commercial Fire

5/17/2022 (Permalink)

People escape to fire exit door Make sure everyone in the building knows the best escape route.

Kowing how to handle a fire in your workspace is essential. Fire damage can affect both structures and people, so factor both into your plans.

Basic Prevention and Preparation

Make sure everyone in the building knows the best escape route.
Hold regular emergency drills.
Keep a well-stocked first-aid kit in an easily accessible location.
Stay on top of repairs and maintenance.
Consider asking The Woodlands, TX fire department to inspect your building for hazards.
Consider attending a CPR certification course and inviting your coworkers.

Burn First Aid
If a fire occurs, call 911 immediately; then try to get everyone out of the building and to a safe location. Don't reenter the building until after firefighters have inspected the fire damage.
If someone has been burned, remove constrictive clothing and jewelry. Minor burns can be treated with cool water for initial pain relief; after the burn has cooled apply mild skin cream and loosely cover the affected area with a clean bandage. Over-the-counter painkillers can be helpful; follow the manufacturer's instructions. 
Larger (more than three inches in diameter) or more severe burns require medical attention, as does smoke inhalation. While awaiting EMS, attempt to keep the person calm and monitor breathing and pulse. Remove clothing and jewelry from the burned area while being careful not to further damage the skin, and cover the burn with a clean, loose cloth.

Property Recovery
Once all the people have been taken care of, you can turn your attention to the building. You'll need professionals to assess the fire damage and handle repairs, so find a restoration firm in The Woodlands, TX, before an emergency takes place. Knowing who to call can make a stressful situation much easier.
No one wants to be dealing with a commercial fire, but taking preventative steps and making sure you have the knowledge and resources you need can go a long way towards making a bad situation better.

Advantages of SERVPRO's Electronic Claims and Commitment To Quality

4/25/2022 (Permalink)

Tablet and cel phone. SERVPRO’s electronic customer files are troves of essential data.

SERVPRO's Electronic Claims

If your office suffers structural damage from a storm, fire or another disaster, filing an insurance claim should be less stressful than executing repairs. Choose SERVPRO for a team of masterful rebuilding experts that can return your place of business in Porter Heights, TX, back to normal. Besides their overall commitment to quality, these rebuilding geniuses possess a simple filing infrastructure that makes working with them as pleasurable as possible.

Quality Compliance
As one of the most trusted names in repair, SERVPRO is devoted to providing a professional experience from start to finish. You can expect:

  • Safe and effective rebuilding and cleaning techniques
  • Background checks on staff
  • Properly registered and maintained vehicles
  • Excellent insurance

Besides providing dependable service, their sophisticated electronic filing system makes processing any insurance claim a snap.

Electronic Claims
SERVPRO’s Electronic Claims Information System offers multiple advantages. Most critically, a breakdown of assignments is always available for viewing. New assignments, pending jobs and completed tasks are easily identifiable, providing an instant read on how repairs are progressing.
Cleaning and construction recommendations are broken down into digestible chunks. Estimates are provided for each item. This is extremely useful when figuring out your total cost. Having this figure early on may assist with speeding up your insurance claim. Customer files can also be mailed in printed form. Alternatively, they can be emailed as an Excel spreadsheet.

SERVPRO’s electronic customer files are troves of essential data. Included is the initiating report, photographic evidence of damage and every piece of related paperwork. Having every scrap of information in one location is a strong advantage when dealing with an insurance agent. The quicker you can provide whatever data is requested, the faster your claim may be pushed through.
With everything involved in getting your office up and running after a calamity, filing an insurance claim should be easy. Let SERVPRO’s information gathering abilities make the ordeal as smooth as possible.