Recent Posts

Why You Should Have A Fire Extinguisher

2/27/2019 (Permalink)

Office buildings need specific fire safety equipment to keep both employees and clients safe. This includes smoke detectors, sprinklers, fire alarms, and extinguishers.  

The first step in fire damage restoration is to put out the fire using the proper tools.  A first responder may use an approved portable fire extinguisher to prevent a small fire from growing and causing further damage.  

The National Fire Protection Agency publishes a series of standards and requirements for portable fire extinguishers called NFPA 10, available here.

No matter what the size of the fire, your first priority should be to get everyone out safely and call 911.  Once the fire has been put out, you can call SERVPRO of SW Orlando (407) 704-0327 to assist with the fire damage restoration.  

Here is a link for another great resource on why you should buy a fire extinguisher for your home. 

Understand our Terms and Lingo

2/25/2019 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO Understand our Terms and Lingo Terms used in the insurance industry by restoration professionals.

SERVPRO of Southwest Orlando is always "Here to Help". We know the jargon can be confusing so we usually try to break it down as easy as we can out in the field, but we know that our customers like to stay informed. Here are some common terms used in the field with their definition so you can understand better what is happening in your home or business.

Anti-Microbials: A substance, mechanism, or condition that inhibits the growth or existence of an organism.Commonly applied after a water damage to prevent mold from developing.

Fire Damage Recovery: The process of restoring and recovering property and belongings after a fire. The objectives include minimizing existing damage, damage mitigation, structure stabilization, soot & odor removal and reconstruction.

Fungi: The unicellular or multicellular eukaryotic/ DNA organisms embracing a large group of microflora including: molds, mildews, yeasts, mushrooms, rusts and smuts.

HVAC: Heating, ventilation and air conditioning.

HEPA Filter: High efficiency particulate air filter, a specialized filter capable of removing 99.7% of particles. Commonly used in mold or odor job sites. HEPA Vacuum or HEPA air scrubber. 

Masking Agents: Designed to prevent or remove heightened awareness to odors by providing a fragrance, which is stronger and more pleasant to smell while the source of the odor is being eliminated.

Smoke Damage Removal: Neutralizing or removing smoke odors that linger after fires.

Smoke Particles: Smoke is composed of gases / sometimes aerosols, and airborne solids. Dry wood, natural fibers and paper all produce small non-smearing material. Plastic, foam, and rubber (polymers) produce large easily smeared residues.

The Restoration Company for All Insurance Adjusters

2/21/2019 (Permalink)

As a leader in fire and water cleanup and restoration, SERVPRO of Southwest Orlando offers your insurance company an array of competitive advantages. Our goal is to restore both your customer’s property and their peace of mind through timely mitigation and adherence to IICRC standards. The result? Lower claims costs and satisfied customers – and that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

SERVPRO of Southwest Orlando is uniquely qualified to help. Our results create a measurable difference, giving you many competitive advantages. We understand your situation. As an agent or adjuster, you have a responsibility to keep claims costs down while still providing the best services possible for your customers.

Emergency Response to Claims

Restoring property is our first priority. Your customer will appreciate the immediate response and you will know everything is being done to limit the damage.

Pretesting Reduces Claims Expense

Restoring property is less expensive than replacing property. Claims Professionals know the rule is, "Restore whenever possible, replace only when necessary." Our highly-trained professionals make sure pretesting is completed on every loss to determine restorability.

Claims Inventory Service

At SERVPRO of Southwest Orlando we can provide an itemized loss inventory. You will receive a link to an inventory site that will provide pictures of important items and the status of the contents in the cleaning process.

Electronic Claims Information

Our Claims Information Center provides fast, accurate information you need to make sound decisions, including:

  • A Complete Electronic Job File
    • First Notice of Loss
    • Detailed Estimate
    • Digital Loss Photos
    • Scanned Forms and Paperwork
    • All delivered by email or hard copy
  • On-line Access to All Files
    • New Assignments
    • Pending Jobs
    • Completed Jobs
  • Informative Reports to Improve Results
    • Job Cost Data
  • Performance Comparison to Industry Standard

Superior, Time-Tested Training

Effective training is the best way to help ensure your customers receive the service they deserve. Our staff is trained to IICRC standards in Fire and Water Cleanup and Restoration. In addition, continuing education classes are available to all SERVPRO Franchise Professionals at SERVPRO Industries, Inc.'s state of the art IICRC Approved Training Facility.

Vendor Qualification Compliance and Professionalism

If you call SERVPRO of Southwest Orlando, we will use only qualified vendors to service your customer. That commitment resulted in:

  • A National Call Center to achieve prompt handling of the claim
  • Implementation of best practices and job process programs
  • National Accounts qualification criteria and annual compliance checks
  • Crew and vehicle standards
  • Insurance requirements
  • File documentation requirements
  • Quality assurance program

Serving Adjusters and Their Clients

Our job is to reassure the customer, perform quality service and to report to you quickly. We know your job is to interpret the policy and adjust the claim and not to deal with problems from vendors. Working together we strive to save you time so you can focus on priority files, while having complete control of every loss you are assigned. 24-hour emergency response, damage mitigation, loss assessment, and an electronic file are available to you within hours. Our documented, measured performance increases value to you and your shareholders, managers and customers.

Hard-earned results have made SERVPRO of Southwest Orlando a leader in the fire and water cleanup and restoration industry. The SERVPRO system is geared to achieve customer satisfaction and mitigation results, adding to your company’s competitive advantage.

Call SERVPRO of Southwest Orlando today at 407-704-0327!

What Happens to Your Belongings After a Disaster?

12/14/2018 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO What Happens to Your Belongings After a Disaster? We will be able to keep your items safe and secure with our in-house storage.

Water and fire damage affect not only the structure of your house but also your belongings. SERVPRO of SW Orlando understands that your home is more than a structure. Your furniture, clothing, keepsakes, and other belongings are important to you. Your belongings are important to us, which is why we provide the following to help restore and protect your belongings while we are restoring your home.

Move-Outs/Pack-Outs

If your home requires extensive restoration or cleaning, SERVPRO of SW Orlando can conduct an organized, efficient move-out of the affected area. A move-out will provide several benefits, including the following:

  • A quicker remodeling process
  • Protecting items from potential damage
  • Protecting contents from further on-site damage

When restoration is completed, we will work with you to coordinate the move-in according to your needs. The services offered upon move-in may depend on your insurance coverage.

On-Site Storage

We have in-house storage where we can keep your belongings safe from further damage, and can provide cleaning and restoration services for your belongings. We have four warehouses dedicated to storage where we can keep your items safe and secure. Your items will be placed in clearly identified and secured containers. You can rest assured that your items are being taken care of.

Contents Claim Inventory Service

When emergency strikes, the damage can often feel overwhelming. We can help ease the worry and confusion during the recovery process by offering our Contents Claim Inventory Service (CCIS), which provides a detailed and accurate list of your belongings. We take a room-by-room inventory of your contents, including digital photos, and in some instances, bar coding.

Our Contents Claim Inventory Service:

  • Preloss list and value of contents
  • Detailed and accurate report
  • Better information to settle claims quicker
  • Assistance with burden of proof for claims

If your home and belongings need restoration services, rest assured that SERVPRO of SW Orlando has you covered. We can pack out, store and restore your belongings. Give us a call today at 407-704-0327. 

ERP's and Why They Are Important

12/7/2018 (Permalink)

Being a business owner can have many responsibilities, and you may have to take on multiple roles.

In most cases, disaster is the last thing you are thinking about, but every business owner, regardless of how new or old your business is, should have a plan and guide for what to do in the event of a disaster.

SERVPRO of SW Orlando offers a free community service called the "Emergency Ready Plan", or an ERP.

ERP's are handy little guides that we make at SERVPRO that contain basic information regarding your property, who owns the property, and where your emergency shut off locations are.

We document and photograph where your electrical, water, and gas shut offs are, as well as your sprinkler system and security system. We also have the contacts for those utilities companies in the event that you must make contact.

Key contacts are also listed in the ERP, such as the owner, the insurance agent for the property, the SERVPRO representative, and the managers of the building.

The emergency contacts and services page has the fire department and police department's emergency and non-emergency numbers as well, that way, if contact is needed, you know where to find all those phone numbers and contact points.

It's very beneficial to have an ERP because although the business owner might know where everything is and who to contact, your employees might not know. Having a guide like this can help so much if the business owner is not present.

ERP's are very convenient as well, we are able to provide a paper copy, and we can provide a digital version on the Ready Plan app! Which makes ERP's very easy to access in times of need.

When you run a business, it's good to prepare for not just the next day's shift, but for the things that happen unexpectedly.

SERVPRO of SW Orlando is always here to help!

How to Perform a Monthly Fire Extinguisher Inspection

10/29/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage How to Perform a Monthly Fire Extinguisher Inspection If you need professional fire, smoke and water damage cleanup and remediation after a fire, call the experts at SERVPRO of SW Orlando.

Home Safety: How to Inspect a Fire Extinguisher

When was the last time you took time to check the fire extinguisher that sits under your kitchen sink? Or the one hanging from a dusty hook in your garage? If you’re struggling to remember, it’s time to check it. Like any other piece of safety equipment, a home fire extinguisher should be inspected regularly to ensure it’s in proper working condition. A fire extinguisher in good working condition is your first line of defense when a home fire erupts.

Ideally, you should inspect your portable home fire extinguishers every month.

Tips for Performing a Monthly Fire Extinguisher Check

Check the label or tag.

Every fire extinguisher, whether disposable or rechargeable, has a manufacturer’s label or tag. Read the tag and follow the manufacturer’s recommended maintenance suggestions.

Check the tamper seal.

If the tamper seal has been broken or is cracked, a disposable fire extinguisher needs to be replaced. If it’s rechargeable, it needs to be serviced professionally. Check the locking or pull pin as well to make sure it’s in the correct position. If the pin missing, the fire extinguisher needs to be inspected or serviced by a professional.

Inspect for physical damage.

Physically inspect the fire extinguisher for obvious damage. This may include but is not limited to dents, corrosion, cracks and obvious leakage. If a fire extinguisher has leakage, it’s no longer under full pressure and may not work properly when you need it most. Check the fire extinguisher nozzle as well, to ensure it’s not clogged by grime, dust, bugs or leakage from the unit itself.

Check the pressure gauge.

Check that the pressure gauge needle indicates the fire extinguisher pressure is in the optimum operating range. Often the correct pressure range will be designated by green on the gauge.

Is the fire extinguisher full?

During your monthly check, lift the fire extinguisher and determine if it still feels full. If there has been a leak, it will feel light, and it won’t have the right amount of pressure to work correctly.

Shake it.

If you have a dry chemical fire extinguisher, it should be shaken once a month during your inspection. This helps prevent the chemical dousing agent from solidifying at the bottom of the unit.

Write inspection date on tag.

Keep track of every inspection date by writing it on the fire extinguisher tag.

Ensure easy access to your fire extinguisher.

Fire extinguishers should always be easy to access if there is an emergency. You don’t want to have to search for it once a fire breaks out. Don’t block fire extinguishers with furniture, boxes or any other items. Everyone who lives in the household should know where the closest fire extinguisher is located and how to use it in case of an emergency.

In the event of a fire emergency, first make sure to get people safely away, then call 911. A home fire extinguisher can be used to put out or control small fires, but it’s still safest to call professional fire fighters before you attempt to control a fire on your own. 

Shut Off Valves at Work

10/29/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Shut Off Valves at Work We also have shut off tags you can put on your water valves so they are easily noticeable.

Many workplaces always call's on the boss or the maintenance man when something goes wrong. What if they were home sick, or in a meeting and you need to locate the water shut off, where do you start? 

SERVPRO of SW Orlando can help commercial property in planning for a water, fire, storm damage. How, with a free Emergency Response Profile created by the SERVPRO Marketing Department. 

By having a plan of action and including it into your regular training at your office you can minimize the cost if an unplanned event happens like a frozen pipe, fire, or anything. 

Some property manager use this as a tool to keep everything organized in one central location. 

Is your business ready for a disaster. Even a simple pipe burst can cause a lot of damage and headache. With a SERVPRO® Emergency READY Profile it can have the critical information to minimize damages, provide the resources for the employee's of the company, and provide property details and information. This is a FREE services that we provide to commercial properties. 

Make an appointment today to get started!

If the unthinkable happens, call your local SERVPRO of SW Orlando Professionals at 407-704-0327; 24/7 to help you avoid the cost and hassle of secondary damages.  We will help make it "Like it never even happened."

Forgotten Causes of Commercial Water Damage

10/26/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial Forgotten Causes of Commercial Water Damage The best commercial water damage is the damage you avoid.

Business owners usually think commercial water damage is caused by floods, massive rains, and storms. That’s often true. Weather events, storms, and flooding do shut down businesses and create major water damage in commercial buildings. Unfortunately, many business owners, commercial space renters, and entrepreneurs don’t think about and try to prevent other typical causes of water damage.   
 

1. Sprinkler systems
Some older office and retail buildings have outdated sprinkler systems that work in conjunction with fire protection systems. While sprinklers can come in handy during a fire emergency, they can also cause commercial flood damage if they are faulty, not well maintained, or in need of replacement. Many a time a poor sprinkler system has damaged commercial inventory and business assets and shut down business. Check your system to make sure that it’s not faulty or in need of repair or replacement.

2. Appliances and equipment
Restaurants and catering businesses sometimes suffer water damage from their appliances or equipment. But any business that has appliances or equipment that use water could suffer water damage. If an appliance fails and spews water across your commercial building, especially during late hours when no one is around, you may come back to work and face a water damage emergency.
 

3. Pipes and plumbing
Just like in a residential home, the plumbing system in a commercial business can fail. A broken pipe or faulty plumbing can result in major water damage in just a few hours.

4. Sewer lines
Sewer backups are 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 issues and ruin products and office furnishings.
 

5. Water Heaters
Water heaters in commercial buildings can crack or lose their seal because of high pressure. You want to make sure and follow the manufacturers guidelines and flush your water heater regularly to make sure it is working properly.

6. Roofing
One of the more obvious ways commercial buildings suffer water damage is through an old or leaky roof. Inspect the roof frequently (at least every six months) to make sure it does not need to be reseal and to be sure it drains properly. Even small leaks should be fixed immediately.

Commercial water damage? Call SERVPRO of SW Orlando. Call anytime 24/7 at 407-704-0327.

Remediating Flood Damage

10/25/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Remediating Flood Damage When your home is flooded, SERVPRO is the company to quickly call for drying out services. We will dry out your carpet and assess the pad underneath.

SERVPRO Technicians Systematically Dry Out Your Carpet to Try and Save the Pad Underneath

Storms around the Orlando area are usually calm enough for the drains and area creeks and rivers to handle. When they are severe enough to generate floods, every home in their path is affected to one point or another.
 
Unless the water generated is massive, most Lee's Summit flood damage restoration efforts center around drying the carpets. SERVPRO technicians attempt to use in-place drying for carpets if possible and remove most of this water by extraction.
 
Our teams start the process with specialized equipment that pushes into the carpet and squeezes the water out through an extraction wand. They first remove water from the center of the room and then move the furniture either to the center or remove it completely from the affected area before starting. Once they finish the center, the teams begin extracting water from around the perimeter of the room in sections of 10 square feet or smaller.
 
After our teams complete one pass over the affected room, an inspector or team leader carefully lifts up one corner of the carpet and examines the pad. If he can squeeze water out of it, the restoration team repeats the extraction process until no more water squeezes out of the pad. They do this as quickly as possible since carpet pads rapidly deteriorate if underwater too long.
 
If the inspector sees that deterioration has started, he recommends removing and replacing the pad immediately. In-place extraction takes longer to remove water, but it can cost less in labor since time is not wasted by detaching the carpet and removing it from the affected rooms.
 
Once the team completes extraction, SERVPRO uses a combination of dehumidifiers and air movers to remove moisture in the surrounding air and to dry both the underside and the surface of the carpet. These devices working together can return a room to its pre-flood condition in just a day or two.
 
Drying carpets are one of the processes SERVPRO of SW Orlando uses to return homes to a dry, safe condition. If you are dealing with any recent or older flooding, contact us today at (407) 704-0327 to schedule an inspection. We are here to help.

How to Keep Mold and Moisture Out of Your HVAC System

10/25/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation How to Keep Mold and Moisture Out of Your HVAC System Contact us to remediate your Orlando home!

Tips and Tricks From SERVPRO of SW Orlando to Keeping Mold and Moisture Out Of Your HVAC System

In the warm summer heat, it's easy to build up moisture; especially when it gets sticky, muggy and humid. When this happens, you naturally crank the A.C., reach for something cold, and kick back in your lazy chair. The problem is, when you're relaxing and enjoying the nice cold breeze, mold is spreading through your ducts, vents, and HVAC system, leaving a nasty haze of mold that you can smell all over the house. If you're running a business, your customers could smell it too- which is why you should always call our service professionals to deal with the problem as soon as possible. 

How Does Mold Get in The HVAC System? 

Mold damage in Orlando is no laughing matter. Mold, fungus, and other bacteria are in their perfect environment when they're trapped in your HVAC system. It's dark, warm, moist, closed in, and humid, meaning that spores can grow practically unabated. You'll notice more and more scent as heat and humidity is generated from outside and pulled through your ducts. 

When this moist air gets in your air system, it collects within and above your HVAC units. At this point, the spores of mold and other fungi easily rise through the air, setting up colonies as your condenser forces them up through the duct system. These aren't the only cases of mold that we've seen at SERVPRO; we've seen mold stick to people's clothes or shoes, and it's all brought inside by excess humidity caused by rainfall. 

Here Are a Few Tips on How to Remove Mold From Your HVAC System 

1. Continue to clean and maintain your HVAC system, even when you aren't using it. Check the ducts for wet spots, and regularly check and maintain your HVAC filter. 

2. Double check the drainage systems on your HVAC for mold. Allow for "dry-out" areas where the drainage comes out to prevent excess moisture. 

3. Get dehumidifiers for your home. They are ideal for collecting excess humidity, and they help with the temperature inside your house, too. 

4. Always insulate your pipes, walls, and ceilings. Use caulking for cracks to control cracks and leaks. 

5. Contrary to common beliefs, keep your windows closed when it's hot outside. Humidity, dust, and dampness easily travel inside.