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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Archived Blog Posts

Immediate Steps to Take if You Suffer From Water Damage

10/24/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Immediate Steps to Take if You Suffer From Water Damage Follow these tips so you can be prepared.

Let’s face it, water damage is threatening to your property’s value and can cause some serious, well damage. Whether you’re facing a storm; a flood; leaks from a weakened roof, HVAC or busted pipes; or experience overflowing appliances, water damage can wreak havoc in an array of emergency situations. To prevent further damage and to increase chances of salvation, it is critical to act quickly within the first 24 hours. Considering you have safely evacuated the premises and safety officials have declared it safe, follow these steps to immediately rectify your business from water damage.

Avoid Additional Risks

Upon returning to your property, survey the premises and document any visible structural damage that may further endanger you and your property. Look for signs of warping, loosened or cracked foundation elements, and holes. If safety officials haven’t done so already, contact utility companies to cease all water and electrical sources. Even if the power is still out upon your return, physically turn off the main power line and individual fuses to avoid risk of electrocution should the power be reactivated.

Document Everything

While surveying your property, take photos and document all damages. Digital photos will allow you to properly store, back-up and transfer files quickly and conveniently. Be sure to document all damages prior to removing any water or starting on any repairs; otherwise, you risk decreasing the extent of your insurance coverage.

Contact your Insurance Provider

Contacting your insurance provider is critical immediately following water damage and your return to the property. Your insurance provider will be able to assess the situation, file a claim, determine whether or not the damage is severe enough to send an adjuster, and provide invaluable next steps. They will also ask for the documentation you’ve collected so it’s important to have that readily available. Pro Tip: if government authorities have declared your region a ‘disaster area’, property owners may have access to increased resources, services and financial assistance.

Secure the Property

Place board over broken windows, fasten tarps, and carryout other measures to avoid further leaks and water damage.  Be sure to document all of your efforts to secure your property from further damage.  If these precautionary steps are not taken and something else happens, additional damages may not be covered by your insurance provider.

Mitigate Mold Damage

It only takes 24-48 hours for mold to develop following a flood or water damage. If items have been wet for less than 48 hours, they may be salvageable. Remove wet contents such as carpeting and furniture as soon as possible. If an item has been exposed longer than 48 hours, it may be harder and more expensive to salvage. If possible, you can start the drying out process within 24 hours and eliminate mold and mildew growth by: 

  • Removing wet furniture or lifting it off of carpet
  • Place aluminum foil or other carpet separators on furniture to prevent carpet stains
  • Remove and hang area rugs to dry
  • Use fans and dehumidifiers to dry out wet areas
  • Turn air conditioning on to help remove humidity and speed the drying process

Contact A Professional Restoration Service

If any amounts of water need more than a mop and you’ve followed the immediate steps to secure your business, water removal may require professional attention. SERVPRO of SW Orlando has the expertise, training and equipment to quickly remedy water damages and help your business get back to working order faster. Give SERVPRO of SW Orlando a call at 407-704-0327.

Keeping Your Business Above Water After Water Damage

10/23/2018 (Permalink)

Flooding and water damage events at Orlando commercial properties are often complex with numerous issues that require a knowledgeable and flexible response. Whether we’re dealing with a relatively small water cleanup scenario or a large scale event, we work quickly to assess each unique situation and isolate the damaged area. In many instances, normal operations can continue in a temporary space while we restore your facility.

Restoring Commercial Properties Presents Unique Challenges

Our professionals are trained to be mindful of legal and environmental concerns and strive to fully restore the damaged area while working within your budgetary constraints. We understand that every hour spent cleaning up is an hour of lost revenue and productivity. So when an emergency situation arises in your business, give us a call and we’ll be there fast with the help you need.

About SERVPRO of SW Orlando

SERVPRO of SW Orlando specializes in the cleanup and restoration of commercial and residential property after a 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.

Methods for Removing Smoke Odor After a Fire

10/23/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Methods for Removing Smoke Odor After a Fire House Fire

When you have a house fire in Orlando, FL, it may seem like the smell of the smoke will never go away. Smoke particles can infiltrate every nook and cranny in your home. They can even imbed themselves into furniture, flooring and walls. Professional restoration experts, however, have methods for extracting smoke odor from your home as part of the restoration process. Here are some smoke cleaning processes that may prove effective in removing the stench from your home.

Air Filtration Devices

One of the first methods the experts are likely to try is an air filtration device. This air scrubber sucks in the air in your home and returns it clean and refreshed. The filters in this system are specially constructed to reduce smoke odor. Some common features of filtration devices that remove smoke odor include

• HEPA filters
• Activated carbon filters
• Treated filters that specifically target smoke

Ozone Machines

Another method of smoke cleaning involves the use of ozone machines. Rather than taking air in, these machines create and expel ozone, the same compound chemical created by a rainstorm that gives the outdoor air its fresh scent. The ozone flows throughout your home, oxidizing smoke residue and neutralizing its odor.

Thermal Foggers

Thermal foggers create deodorizing droplets that permeate the air as well as porous materials in your home to get rid of smoke odor. Using heat and pressurization, the fogger creates tiny particles that can go wherever the smoke damage has gone. Your home is deodorized and cleansed of the stench of the fire.

One of the many advantages of hiring smoke cleaning professionals to remove odors from your home after a fire is that they are equipped with industrial machines that can be used to eliminate the smells. A process that would take weeks or even months with any device you could buy retail can be completed in a matter of hours or days with the advanced methods used by professionals.

What Can You Do to Fix Moldy Clothes?

10/19/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation What Can You Do to Fix Moldy Clothes? Your dryer is your friend.

The reason clothing is so susceptible to mold growth is not just because of the mold-inviting circumstances within the laundry room. Generally, when it is worn, clothing collects sweat and skin cells, as well as dirt and other forms of moisture and organic material that mold loves to feast on. Then, it is placed in the laundry hamper and usually sits for days before it it is finally washed. This scenario is typical and may not result in a noticeable mold infestation, but should the soiled laundry be allowed to fester long enough, a mildew smell may be present, as well as visible signs of green, blue, gray, black, or sometimes even white mold on clothes.

Another scenario is becoming more common due to busy lifestyles and poor habits. The quick development of mold on clothes after washing may be surprising to some, but it is quite an ordinary occurrence for those with overwhelmed schedules or those who are vulnerable to procrastination because they often forget to remove clothing from the washing machine once the cycle is finished. As time passes, this leads to the rapid proliferation of mildew and mold on clothes after washing, due to the remaining moisture. Neglecting to put the wet clothes in the dryer for a few hours is not what makes mold grow. Neglecting the clothes in the washer for 6 hours or longer–sometimes a day or even a few days–is the problem. Before too long, a mildew smell will be detected in the washer and clothing. Some assume this is the residue of soap, and while that may be true to some extent, the fact of the matter is that most soaps contains lard and other organic (even synthetic) materials that mold can thrive off of. The smell is not necessarily the residue of soap, but an indication that mold is producing a secondary metabolite–the mildew smell–from consuming that soap.

What is a natural detergent to kill mold?  Here is what you will need.

  • Two 5 oz. organic castile soap bars (naturally-scented with lavender or peppermint is great but non-scented works just the same)
  • 3 cups of washing soda (no, it’s not the same as baking soda)
  • 2 cups of borax
  • 30 drops of  certified-pure lavender essential oil (optional but highly advisable for a mold killing laundry detergent)

Once you have all the materials, this is what to do. 

  1. Cut the castile soap bars into small pieces or chunks. (This is crucial to avoid damaging the food processor.)
  2. Place the cut castile soap pieces or chunks in the food processor bowl. Pulse the soap on high until what remains are large crumbs.
  3. Add the washing soda to the food processor and pulse for 1 minute. (After pulsing, all the ingredients should be in powder form and well-combined. If not, try running the food processor again and then mixing with a spoon.)
  4. Empty the washing soda and castile soap into the storage container. Add the borax and blend well with a spoon.
  5. Add the essential oils of choice (optional but beneficial) and be sure to mix well.

Do not place this mixture into the drawer or dispenser, place it directly in with the laundry.

Pet Storm Preparedness

10/16/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Pet Storm Preparedness Don't let your pet be unprepared.

Pet Storm tips from SERVPRO of SW Orlando -

Did you know that almost all dog and cat owners don't have disaster plans for their pets? SERVPRO of SW Orlando urges you to make sure this isn’t you.

You made a disaster kit for yourself and family, so make one for your pet. This includes medical records and medication, food and water with can openers, leashes, and carriers.

Tips:

  • Keep pets inside during a storm. Animals can become confused and run away from home during a disaster.
  • Arrange a safe haven for you and your pets during evacuation. Do not leave pets behind.
  • Store an emergency kit—with items such as pet food, bottled water, medical records, a blanket, a flashlight and leashes—as close to an exit as possible.
  • Make sure all pets wear collars and tags. 
  • Have your pet microchipped in case of a lost collar. 
  • Place a rescue alert sticker to your front home to let rescuers know that there are pets inside.
  • Choose a caregiver to take care of your pet in the event you are unable to.

SERVPRO of SW Orlando 407-704-0327

Orlando 24 Hour Emergency Water Damage Service

10/12/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Orlando 24 Hour Emergency Water Damage Service SERVPRO of SW Orlando provides 24 hour water damage restoration service in Orlando.

SERVPRO of SW Orlando is available 24 hours a day for water emergencies, large or small. When you are dealing with water damage, immediate action is crucial. A delay of just a few hours can greatly increase the severity of the water damage.

We Answer the Phone Ready to Help
Call Today - (407)704-0327 

We understand that when you call us, you may be feeling confused, stressed, and vulnerable. You need an expert to guide you through this crisis. SERVPRO of SW Orlando has the specific water damage training and experience to help you through this tough time. We specialize in water damage restoration—in fact, it's the cornerstone of our business.

What to Expect

When you call, we will ask several questions regarding your water damage emergency. These questions will help us determine what equipment and resources to bring, including how many trained SERVPRO Professionals may be needed.

Our SERVPRO Representative will ask several questions:

  • Your name and contact information
  • Your insurance information (if applicable)
  • The street address of the water-damaged home or business
  • When did the flooding or water damage occur?
  • What caused the water damage (if known)?
  • Is there electricity available (on-site)?

About SERVPRO of SW Orlando

SERVPRO of SW Orlando 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.

Dangers of Flash Flooding in Orlando, FL

10/11/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Dangers of Flash Flooding in Orlando, FL If flooding does occur in your area, listen to and adhere to weather alerts and warnings and know your risk!

Flooding is the number #1 weather related cause of death, with majority of those deaths caused by flash flooding. Flash flooding is when there is a large amount of rain that comes down within minutes or hours. Other causes can be heavy rain associated with a severe thunderstorm, hurricane, tropical storm, or melt water from ice or snow flowing over ice sheets or snowfields.

If flooding does occur in your area, please remember

  • Listen to NOAA Weather Radio for current and forecasted conditions in your area.
  • If flooding begins in your area, go to higher ground immediately.
  • When driving, always be aware that the road bed under flood waters may be severely damaged. NEVER drive through flooded roadways. Remember that it takes only two feet of water to carry away a vehicle, including pickups and SUVs.
  • When walking, do not attempt to cross flowing streams. Remember that it takes only six inches of rushing water to knock an adult off his feet.
  • If your vehicle stalls, get out immediately and go to higher ground.
  • Be extra cautious at night, when it is harder to see possible flood dangers.
  • These four words could save your life: TURN AROUND, DON’T DROWN.

When it comes to water damage from flooding, safety is the number one priority. When you can insure the safety of your family and conditions have improved, that is when to call in the professionals and assess damage. Our SERVPRO team is ready for whatever happens.

The 5 Most Common Causes of House Fires

10/10/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage The 5 Most Common Causes of House Fires If you experience a fire in your home, don't hesitate to call SERVPRO of SW Orlando at 407-704-0327.

Here are top 5 most common causes of house fires as identified by the National Fire Protection Association.

  1. Candles

From 2007-2011, the NFPA says there were an average of 10,630 fires in the U.S. that were started by candles, causing 115 deaths, 903 injuries and approximately $418 million in property damage. That is an average of 29 candle fires per day.

Safety tips:

  • Never leave a candle burning near flammable items.
  • Never leave a candle burning in a child’s room or an unoccupied room.
  • Make sure candles fit securing into candle holders so they won’t tip over.
  • Blow out any candles before leaving a room or going to sleep
  1. Smoking

While the number of fires caused by smoking is trending downward, the NFPA found that there were still an average of 17,600 related fires per year resulting in 490 deaths and more than $516 million in property damage.

Safety tips:

  • If you smoke, consider smoking outside.
  • Use wide, sturdy ashtrays to catch butts and ashes.
  • Look for cigarette butts under furniture and between seat cushions to make sure no lit butts have fallen someplace where they can’t be seen.
  • Don’t smoke in bed, when you’re tired or around medical oxygen.
  1. Electrical & Lighting

According to the NFPA, in 2011 approximately 47,700 home structure fires were caused by some sort of electrical failure or malfunction. These resulted in 418 deaths, 1,570 injuries and $1.4 billion in property damage.

Safety tips:

  • Don’t overload outlets or electrical cords.
  • Make sure you have the right cord for the job – inside cords for inside, heavy duty/outside cords for outdoor use.
  • Don’t leave Christmas lights, Christmas trees, or halogen lights on overnight or when not at home.
  • Consider having an electrician perform an annual checkup of your home’s wiring.
  1. Dryers & Washing Machines

Clothes dryer fires happen more often than one might think, accounting for 16,800 home structure fires in 2010 and doing more than $236 million in property damage. 

Safety tips:

  • Clean the lint screen frequently and don’t run the dryer without it.
  • For gas and propane dryers, make sure there aren’t any leaks in the lines.
  • Vent the dryer to the outside of the house and ensure nothing blocks the vent pipe.
  • Clean the vent pipe and the area where the screen is housed.
  • Keep the area around the dryer free of combustible materials.
  1. Lightning

From 2007-2011, NFPA says there were an average of 22,600 fires per year caused by lightning strikes.

Safety tips:

  • Stay away from doors and windows during an electrical storm.
  • Do not use corded phones, computers, TVs or other electrical equipment during storms.
  • Unplug major electronics – TVs, stereo equipment, computers and microwaves to minimize damage if there is a lightning strike close by.
  • Avoid plumbing such as sinks, baths and faucets during a thunderstorm.

SERVPRO: Your Experts in Commercial Water Damage in Orlando, FL

10/10/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial SERVPRO: Your Experts in Commercial Water Damage in Orlando, FL Have questions? Call us today - 407-704-0327

If you have recently become a victim of commercial water damage in Lee's Summit, MO, you may be wondering what you can do to mitigate your damages. There is a critical period in which certain actions must be taken to preserve as much of your property as possible and to decrease any health risks when water damage has occurred in a commercial space.

Preparing a Space for Water Damage Restoration

Before you enter your commercial space or any flooded building, you will need to make sure the electrical power to the structure is shut off. You should also be aware that during a flooding event, small animals or reptiles tend to seek shelter inside of buildings. Be prepared to deal with the discovery of wild animals in your space.

Protect yourself from entering any flooded building by wearing an organic vapor respirator. You can purchase these at any local paint and building supply stores. You also want to have rubber gloves, protective clothing, and eye protection. The first thing you should do is ventilate the affected areas by opening the windows and placing fans where possible.

Unfortunately, there likely will be items that you need to throw away. Any items that are porous and have absorbed contaminated floodwater cannot be restored. If your commercial space has drywall, mattresses, pillows, box springs, particle board, carpets or carpet pads, these will need to be discarded if they have become saturated. However, there is good news: If you have clothing or household fabrics that can be machine-washed, you may be able to salvage them. Use your washing machine to clean these items with a 10-minute soak at the minimum in hot water with detergent. The soap and normal wash should remove most of the contamination and any staining that is present.

Be aware that your commercial space will need a thorough professional inspection, cleaning and possibly restructuring. Water damaged walls and installations must be removed and repaired, and pockets of saturation should be exposed for drying and sanitizing. Always remember that mold growth could take a few days to appear as it thrives in a moist environment with organic-type materials such as paper or particle board and in temperatures that range between 60 and 86 degrees Fahrenheit. Keep good airflow throughout the interior environment, and maintain moderate temperatures to decrease the risk of any mold growth. It is also important that you let your space dry out before any rebuilding occurs.

Services You Can Count On in Orlando, FL

You can depend on SERVPRO to provide reasonable prices for commercial damages and other services in the Orlando area. Our restoration services include cleanup after water damage, fire damage, and storm damage. We also assist with mold remediation, and we're qualified to provide cleaning and building services. Our trained and certified IICRC technicians are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to begin your restoration. 

Is Mold Covered by Your Homeowners Insurance?

10/5/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation Is Mold Covered by Your Homeowners Insurance? Call SERVPRO of SW Orlando today with any questions about mold, 407-704-0327.

Most owners insurance comes down to the source of the moisture to where the mold damage started. If you are unsure if your homeowners insurance covers mold, go over your policy. Make sure you look for mold exclusions or limitations and call your agent if it still unclear.


If mold results from a sudden and accidental damage, like a pipe bursting, the cost of mold remediation would be covered. Now, if it mold shows up because of neglecting home maintenance then most claims would be rejected.

Here is sample of damage done by an inch of flood water:

  • Replace carpet, flooring: $2,700
  • New baseboard molding: $2,250
  • Replace drywall $1,350
  • Cleanup, materials: $1,000
  • Bookshelves, lamps: $500
  • Total: $7,800


Source: National Flood Insurance Program - https://www.fema.gov/national-flood-insurance-program


You could also buy a mold rider as an add-on to your existing policy for extra coverage. If your insurance carrier doesn’t provide a rider, specialty companies might sell you a stand alone mold policy. Just to warn you, there will be a big price tag for that route.


If your insurance does not cover mold at all, moisture prevention is the key.

To help prevent mold growth, take the following steps:

  • Lower indoor humidity with air conditioners, de-humidifiers, and exhaust fans
  • Inspect hoses and fittings on appliances, sinks, and toilets
  • Use household cleaners with mold-killing ingredients like bleach
  • Opt for paints and primes that contain mold inhibitors
  • Clean gutters to avoid overflow and check roof for leaks
  • Avoid carpet in wet areas like basements and bathrooms
  • Remove and dry carpet, padding, and upholstery within 48 hours of flooding

Source: House logic https://www.houselogic.com/finances-taxes/home-insurance/homeowners-insurance-mold-covered/

Commercial Cleaning Services

10/5/2018 (Permalink)

If you are a business owner, or run a particular business that receives a lot of visitors and foot-traffic, you know how important it is to keep your business looking clean and in good shape. A lot of times, you don't have the time to worry about the common wear and tear that gradually soils your office.

When grime, odor, and moisture challenges go beyond the scope of your regular janitorial staff, you should call SERVPRO of SW Orlando for prompt service. Whether it’s removing an odor problem or deep cleaning flooring or carpets, you can rely on us to make your workspace look its very best.

SERVPRO of SW Orlando offers cleaning services ranging from cleaning restaurant hoods to removing biohazard contaminants. We have the specialized training and products to get your property back to business. Our cleaning services include the following:

  • Air Ducts and HVAC
  • Biohazard and Sewage
  • Trauma and Crime Scene
  • Carpet and Upholstery
  • Drapes and Blinds
  • Ceilings, Walls, and Hard Floors
  • Odor Removal and Deodorization
  • Vandalism

Mold Remediation Process

10/5/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation Mold Remediation Process Call SW Orlando SERVPRO today if you have any mold issues. 407-704-0327

Mold Remediation Process

Every mold damage scenario is different and requires a unique solution, but the general mold remediation process stays the same. The steps listed below illustrate the “typical” process:

 • The mold cleanup and restoration process begins when you call SERVPRO of SW Orlando (407)704—0327. Our representative will ask a series of questions to help us determine the necessary equipment, resources, and personnel.

•SERVPRO Franchise Professionals will carefully inspect your property for visible signs of mold. Mold feeds on cellulose and water and can be hidden from plain view. They use various technologies to detect mold and hidden water sources. 

•They use various containment procedures to prevent the spread of mold. They may use advanced containment procedures like negative air chambers to isolate the contaminated area with physical barriers and negative air pressure to keep the mold spores from spreading during the cleanup process. All fans and heating and cooling systems will be turned off to prevent the spread of mold.

 • Their specialized filtration equipment allows their Professionals to capture microscopic mold spores out of the air. They utilize powerful “air scrubbers” and HEPA vacuums to prevent the spread of these mold spores while the mold remediation is in process.

 • The mold remediation process depends on the amount of mold growth and the types of surfaces on which the mold appears. SERVPRO of SW Orlando uses anti-fungal and antimicrobial treatments to eliminate mold colonies and to help prevent new colonies from forming. Removing and disposing of mold-infested porous materials, like drywall and carpeting, may be necessary to remediate heavy mold growth.

•SERVPRO of SW Orlando will clean your furniture, decorative items, curtains, clothing, and other restorable items affected by mold. They use a variety of cleaning techniques to clean and sanitize your belongings. They’re also trained to remove odors and deodorization using fogging equipment.

•Depending on the level of mold damage, drywall, subfloors, and other building materials may be removed. Restoration may involve minor repairs, such as replacing drywall, painting, and installing new carpet; or it may entail major repairs such as the reconstruction of various areas or rooms in a home or busines

How SERVPRO Assesses Flood Damage After a Dishwasher Breakdowns in your Orlando Home

10/4/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage How SERVPRO Assesses Flood Damage After a Dishwasher Breakdowns in your Orlando Home Orlando flooding relies on SERVPRO of SW Orlando for cleanup and water removal.

SERVPRO's Array of Measuring Devices Ensures a Dry Home Post Flooding

Dishwashers are a welcome addition to many households. After all, who does not love being able to simply rinse the dishes, set the cycle, and let the machine do the work? It is very convenient. However, like any other appliance, a dishwasher might malfunction, and a dishwasher breakdown often equals a flood of water in your kitchen.

Flood damage to your Orlando home can be a serious cause for concern. A dishwasher might cause a surprisingly large flood in your kitchen, so naturally, you want to get that cleaned up as quickly as possible to mitigate any further damage. That is why we recommend you put in a call to SERVPRO at once -We’re Faster To Any Size Disaster.
 
An essential element of our job is assessing the damage to your home. A thorough assessment lets our experts know how much moisture is present, which is vital information that we need to decide upon the best course of action.
 
A visual inspection is an important first start, but of course, that is only one part of the process. Our teams come prepared with a range of powerful equipment to help us assess the flood damage to your home:
 
A moisture sensor to help us ascertain how deeply water has penetrated into soft materials. The sensor displays a blinking light and makes an audible beep when moisture is present, and this allows us to measure the extent of the damage. We have other models that work silently.
 
A moisture meter to help us measure how much moisture is in any structure. Meters are useful for testing the damp content of every part surrounding your dishwasher including not only the floor but also walls, wall insulation, cabinets, and rugs or carpets. Do not worry if you have a wooden floor. Our SERVPRO experts also come equipped with penetrating moisture meters that can be used to take a reading under wood flooring or even inside the wall. Our technicians calibrate the instrument to suit the material that we are testing.
 
Thermo-hygrometers. Thermo-hygrometers measure the temperature and the relative humidity in your kitchen. Our technicians use these readings to determine the extent of the water damage. This is usually used after the water has been removed, a verification that a standard RH has been attained.
 
A complete evaluation of the situation assists us in drawing up an effective individual drying plan for your kitchen. We monitor moisture and humidity throughout the drying process so you can rest assured your kitchen is at optimum dryness and humidity before we call the job done. We can also provide documentation to your insurance company.

What Not To Do After a Flood

10/3/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Damage What Not To Do After a Flood SERVPRO of SW Orlando is here to help.

Water damage is typically extensive in a flooded home, leaving many items destroyed. Flood water contaminates everything it touches, making surviving the aftermath almost as dangerous as the storm. Staying safe after a flood doesn’t have to be challenging, but there are a few things that you should not do.

1. Don’t Go Out in Regular Clothing

As flooding water is contaminated and it is likely hiding additional dangers, like downed power lines and submerged electrical outlets, it is essential to wear protective clothing such as rubber boots and rubber gloves. Additionally, you should avoid wearing anything that will allow your skin to come into direct contact with the water.

2. Don’t Touch the Water

You should avoid direct contact with any standing flood water because most of this water will be considered category three black water. Black water is a mix of sewage and other contaminants that are highly toxic to humans and animals, and this water does not need to be ingested to inflict harm.

3. Don’t Let Your Cell Phone Die

Try to maintain a full battery on your cell phone, if at all possible. As many areas will still be covered in water, a cell phone may be your only way of contacting friends and family or emergency services.

4. Don’t Buy New Furniture

While it is tempting to purchase replacement furniture for your home, buying new furniture so soon after flooding can be a bad decision. The cleanup process takes a lot longer than most homeowners expect, and you don’t want to bring new furniture into a contaminated space because you risk further contamination.

5. Don’t Go it Alone

Call your local SERVPRO, SERVPRO of Southwest Orlando, to help you through this tough time. 407-704-0327

Grilling Safety Tips - Home Safety

9/26/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Grilling Safety Tips - Home Safety Call SERVPRO of Southwest Orlando for your fire restoration needs (407) 704-0327.

Fire in the grill, under hot dogs and burgers, is a welcome sight at the family cookout. But fire anywhere else can make your summer kick-off barbecue memorable for all the wrong reasons. To keep you and your family safe while grilling, follow these general guidelines.

General grilling tips:

  •  Propane and charcoal BBQ grills should only be used outdoors.
  • The grill should be placed well away from the home, deck railings and out from under eaves and overhanging branches.
  • Keep children and pets away from the grill area.
  • Keep your grill clean by removing grease or fat buildup from the grills and in trays below the grill.
  • Never leave your grill unattended.

Propane grills:

Before you use your grill:

  •  Check the major connection points between the gas (propane) tank hose and the regulator and cylinder, and where the hose connects to the burners. Tighten if loose.
  • Check the gas (propane) tank hose for the potential (gas) leaks. To do that:
    • Apply a light soap and water solution to the hose using a brush or spray bottle.
    • Turn the propane tank on. If there is a gas leak, the propane will release bubbles around the hose (big enough to see).
    • If there are no bubbles, your grill is safe to use.
  • If there are bubbles, turn off the tank and check connections, then have your grill serviced by a professional before using it again.
  • If the leak doesn’t stop, call the fire department immediately.

When the grill is on:

  • As you are cooking, if you smell gas, turn off the gas tank and burners.
  • If the leak stops immediately, get the grill serviced by a professional before using it again.
  • If the smell continues, move away from the grill and call the fire department immediately. Do not move the grill.

Charcoal grills:

  •  There are several ways to get the charcoal ready to use. Charcoal chimney starters allow you to start the charcoal using newspaper as a fuel.
  • If you use a starter fluid, use only charcoal starter fluid. Never add charcoal fluid or any other flammable liquids to the fire.
  • Keep charcoal fluid out of the reach of children and away from heat sources.
  • There are also electric charcoal starters, which do not use fire. Be sure to use an extension cord for outdoor use.
  • When you are finished grilling, let the coals completely cool before disposing in a metal container.

Is Your Southwest Orlando Business Prepared

9/21/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial Is Your Southwest Orlando Business Prepared Don't fall under that statistic.

Up to 50% of businesses never reopen following a disaster. This usually happens because the amount of damage was too large and too expensive to recover from. Your business should be prepared to minimize the damage to your business so that doors can open back for business.  

There are a few things you can do make sure your establishment is ready.

Continuity Plan

Business that do reopen after a disaster most had a preparedness plan. You must identify the components of your business that are essential for it to continue running. Prepare a plan with the appropriate staff as well. Your staff must know who and what should happen in the case of an emergency.

Prepare your Emergency Plan

Have a plan in place. Letting SERVPRO of Southwest Orlando prepare an Emergency Ready Plan (ERP) will help minimize the damage by having a quick response to an emergency. Knowing what and when to do will ensure that the right steps are taken.  Something as simple as just knowing where the shutoff valves can save you from extensive water damage.

Review Your Insurance

Make sure you are familiar with your insurance. You need to know who to call when you need answers regarding your business. Understanding your policies will help you be able know what is not covered and reassess if your needs require more coverage.

Cyber Security

The physical damages to your property but also internal damage to important files and data. Be sure to have all your data backed up.

What is HEPA and why is it important?

9/20/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation What is HEPA and why is it important? HEPA Vacuum

You have probably heard the term HEPA in commercials for vacuums, but what does it mean?  The definition of HEPA stands for high-efficiency particulate air.

What that means is that air that is passed through a HEPA filter will have 99.7% of particles in the air that are .3 microns or larger.    To help put that in perspective the diameter of a human hair is between 50 and 75 microns.  So as you can see a HEPA filter is capable of removing very small, invisible to the naked eye, particles from the air. Those particles could include but are not limited to dust, pollen, mold spores, soot or ash.

HEPA Vacuums

 HEPA Vacumms are used in applications where critical HEPA filtration is required such as asbestos, lead or mold mitigation and cleanup.

Air Scrubber 

Air scrubbers are disigned for restoration, abatement, and remediation. Used for cleaning and controlling air quailty and creating nagative pressure in a work area. 

How it works: air enters the unit and passes through three- stage filtration captureing smoke, fumes, mold spores, dust and particulates. Cleans air is returned to the enviorment. When large areas are to be cleaned, multiple units can be strategically placed for optium cleaning. 

Using a HEPA filtered air scrubber or vacuum can help remove these small particles from the air leaving the air we breathe cleaner and remove odors.

How to Prepare for Water Damage in 5 Steps

9/19/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage How to Prepare for Water Damage in 5 Steps Call SERVPRO of Southwest Orlando today 407-704-0327

Most water damage that happens to your home is uncontrollable and unpredictable. It could potentially cost you thousands of dollars. When the water starts coming into your home, there is not much you can do to stop it but there is a couple things you can do to prepare for it. Here are a few steps you can take so you can be prepared for the worst.


Step 1: Stop the Source of the Water
If it is possible, stop the water at its source. If it has to do with your plumbing then turn off your water line as soon as possible. This will help with decreasing the amount of damage.
When the flooding occurs from storm water, there is no stopping a storm but you can try and divert the water away from your home by blocking entry points.


Step 2: Think Safety
If it safe, then shut off all electrical sources by turning the circuit breakers or unplug devices. Water and electricity don’t mix, remember that. Make sure everyone, including children, are away from standing water.


Step 3: Protect Your Possessions
Try and remove or raise your furniture from flood water. Water soaked furniture begin to mold very quick and you the last thing you will want is to throw away all of your belongings after a flood. Protect the things that are irreplaceable rather then carpet and other flooring.


Step 4: Contact Your Insurance Company
Now is the time to call your insurance and see how they will approach the water remediation. All insurance companies have professionals who specialize in this kind of emergency so they will have the best people to restore your home back to normal. Do not try to remove the water by yourself. You can just end up cause more damage.


Step 5: Work With the Professionals
When you are choosing a company to perform your water remediation; you need to compare everyone highs and lows. Make sure they have good reviews and are available at your earliest request. SERVPRO of Southwest Orlando is highly dependable and will exceed your expectations for your water remediation.

Storm Damage Can Happen Anywhere!

9/18/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Storm Damage Can Happen Anywhere! Call Southwest Orlando SERVPRO today to begin you ERP. 407-704-0327

According to the National Weather Service (NOAA), “Approximately seventy-five percent of all Presidential disaster declarations are associated with flooding.” NOAA lists the most common flood hazards in the United States as:

  • Flash Flooding
  • River Flooding
  • Storm Surge and Coastal Inundation from Tropical and Non-Tropical Systems
  • Burn Scars/Debris Flows (Caused by Wildfires)
  • Ice/Debris Jams
  • Snowmelt
  • Dry Wash (Caused by heavy rainfall in dry areas)
  • Dam Breaks/Levee Failure

Just because you haven’t experienced a flood doesn’t mean you won’t in the future. In fact, 20% of all claims paid by the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) were for policies in low-risk communities. On average, floods cost $3.5 billion in annual losses in the U.S., and commercial flood claims average more than $75,000 (NFIP).

When catastrophic water damage happens to you, SERVPRO® Southwest Orlando Professionals can help. They can help you prepare ahead of time with an Emergency Ready Profile® (ERP), or respond to any size disaster to begin cleanup and restoration to get you back in business as soon as possible.

Your local SERVPRO® Southwest Orlando Professionals are ready to help make it “Like it never even happened."

Basics of Fire Damage

9/14/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Basics of Fire Damage Southwest Orlando fire damage is something that needs to be dealt with quickly and professionally.

The Basics of Southwest Orlando Fire Damage

While flooding and mold can be scary, there’s nothing quite like a fire to remind homeowners how fragile a building can be. For all homes and businesses in Southwest Orlando, fire damage is something that needs to be dealt with quickly and professionally. Once the immediate emergency has been taken care of, it is time to call in the restoration experts from SERVPRO.

This guide to dealing with fire damage in Southwest Orlando will help you get to grips with some of the steps involved in repair and restoration.

How Long Does Fire Damage Restoration Take?
Clearly, this will depend on how extensive the damage is. If you’ve had a small kitchen fire, for example, but it was put out quickly, the work will probably be quite efficient. If the damage is mostly superficial – burn marks on the outer surface of walls – painting and redecorating should be easy and uncomplicated.

If the damage is more extensive, the restoration could take months. Our reliable SERVPRO fire damage repair company never rushes or compromises on the quality of a job, in order to get occupants back inside faster, because this can put lives at risk. The best way to stay in the loop is to work with our fire damage restoration company that keeps you constantly updated during each stage of the repair process.

Can a Restoration Team Eliminate Smoke Damage?
Yes, our skilled restoration team will use a combination of fogging and ozone deodorization techniques to remove the smell and sight of smoke from the building. Both methods involve heavy duty equipment, so you shouldn’t try to tackle them independently. Let our experts do the job efficiently and professionally, so that you can get back to enjoying your home.

Can You Hire a Fire Damage Team Without Insurance?
Strictly speaking, you don’t need to be covered by fire damage insurance to hire a restoration team. However, it is strongly advised. If you don’t have any type of cover in place, you will be responsible for paying the cost of repair and restoration, in full. As this kind of work requires specialist skills and equipment, it can be expensive. Make certain that you have an insurance policy, so that the expense doesn’t become another disaster.

To get more information and advice on the best ways to deal with fire damage in Southwest Orlando, talk to the experts at SERVPRO of Southwest Orlando. Call (407) 704-0327 to speak to a friendly advisor today.

Different Causes of Commercial Water Damage

9/12/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial Different Causes of Commercial Water Damage Speciality drying equipment for large commercial water damages.

Work Place Water Damage is Restored by SERVPRO

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.

Better Understanding Mold Growth in Your Home

8/31/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation Better Understanding Mold Growth in Your Home Call us today 407-704-0327

Your home’s air is full of different substances, and there are always a few spores floating around. While they normally have no harmful effects on your building, the right conditions could allow them to take hold and create dangerous black mold buildup. If a moisture problem or other circumstance occurs in your Southwest Orlando, FL house, it’s important to get help from a licensed mold cleanup service as soon as possible. Here’s everything you need to know about this potential household hazard.

Favorable Conditions for Growth

Like any other living thing, mold needs the right environment to flourish, and there are a few areas of your house where these circumstances are more likely. Go through your home and make a note if you notice the following:

-Indoor humidity levels above 50 percent
-Water leaks
-Lack of sunlight
-Stagnant air
-Permeable surfaces such as newspaper and blankets

While you can prevent some of the favorable conditions for black mold on your own by opening window shades, operating fans and installing dehumidifiers, others might require intervention by experts such as basement waterproofing contractors. Your goal should be a space with plenty of moving air and low humidity levels.

Common Types of Household Mold

Molds come in every color of the rainbow, but there are only a few that normally grow in homes. Here’s a brief overview and how to identify them:

-Penicillium is a green or blue growth usually found in areas damaged by water.
-Cladosporium is quite common and usually manifests as black or green dots in fabric and carpets.
-Stachybotrys chartarum, which is commonly referred to as black mold, forms in areas that are constantly wet, such as air conditioning ducts and around leaky pipes.

It’s important to understand many species look alike, so contact a remediation specialist if you suspect growth in your home. Once black mold and other growths take hold, it can be difficult to contain their progress, which is why you should take action as soon as possible.

Do's & Don'ts of Water Damage

8/30/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Do's & Don'ts of Water Damage #SERVPRO #WaterDamage

No one wants to come home to a flooded basement or to wake up to the sound of a broken pipe spraying water on valuable furniture and household possessions. However, the possibility of water damage occurring in your Southwest Orlando home is very real. Whether it is a pipe burst or a weather-related issue, it is important to arm yourself with some basic knowledge to deal with this type of emergency before it happens.

Here are a few tips to help in the event of water damage in your Florida home:

  • First, ascertain whether it safe to stay in the house.
  • Make sure there are no active electrical devices or outlets immersed in or near the water.
  • Note that wet floors are slippery and “slip and fall” hazards are some of the most prevalent concerns.
  • Keep in mind that wet materials can be VERY heavy.
  • Have your plumber’s phone number ready and available.
  • Contact your SERVPRO Professional at (407) 704-0327 for complete restoration.

While waiting for your SERVPRO Professional to reach your location, here is what you CAN do:

  • Shut off the water
  • Remove excess water by mopping and blotting.
  • Wipe excess water from wood furniture after removal of lamps and tabletop items.
  • Remove and prop wet upholstery and cushions.
  • Place aluminum foil or wood blocks between furniture legs and wet carpeting.
  • Turn air condition on for maximum drying in the Summer.
  • Remove colored rugs from wet carpeting.
  • Remove art objects and other prized possessions to a safe, dry place
  • Gather loose items from floors.

What NOT to do After Flooding:

  • Don't leave wet fabrics in place. Hang furs and leather goods.
  • Don't leave books, magazines or other colored items on wet carpet or floors.

Storm Damage - How to Take Care of Your Property

8/30/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Storm Damage - How to Take Care of Your Property Don't let storm damage ruin your day, call SERVPRO to make it "Like it never even happened"

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.

SAFETY FIRST

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 Southwest Orlando; we’ll help you determine if your home is safe to return to.

INSURANCE

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 Southwest Orlando 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 Southwest Orlando team is ready to help 24/7. Call us for your fire or water damage issues at (407)704-0327

Getting Rid of Dryer Lint Effectively

8/30/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Getting Rid of Dryer Lint Effectively To keep your home safe from a lint fire, you need to clean your dryer vent regularly.

Excess dryer lint: It’s a problem just about everyone deals with, but it can be much more serious than you may think. Over time, your dryer will collect lint from your apparel as well as towels, blankets and anything else you wash and dry. If you neglect to dispose of these materials and clean out the dryer exhaust, a lint fire could result in your Southwest Orlando, FL, home. The consequences of this could be disastrous. Fortunately, there are some basic ways you can handle this situation and avoid catastrophe.

Clean the Screen

The simplest ways to clean lint from your dryer and stave off the risk of a dryer fire is to clean the lint screen. Depending on the type of dryer you have, you can find this at the top of your dryer or even inside the door or on the side.


* Gently pull out the screen; do not bend.
* Run your hands across the screen and collect the lint; discard it.
* Vacuum the surface of the screen.
* Rinse the screen with water.

Clean Inside the Trap

Often, cleaning off the screen isn’t enough to avoid the risk of fire damage. It’s a good idea to regularly clean out the trap as well. It’s easy for lint to get trapped in this area, so take a vacuum and suction out any remaining debris. Make sure you get your vacuum hose and attachment as far down the trap as possible.

Clean the Exhaust Hose

Another important way to reduce the risk of a lint fire is to unplug your dryer and remove the exhaust hose. You can then vacuum inside the hose or use a long brush to remove lint that may be stuck far inside. Make sure when you put the hose back on that it’s secure.

If you follow these steps, you can help ensure you won’t have a lint fire in your Southwest Orlando, FL, home. Cleaning your dryer regularly is an essential way to stay safe.