Recent Why SERVPRO Posts

How To File A Commercial Insurance Claim On Building Damages

4/8/2019 (Permalink)

This apartment complex in Austin, TX experienced extreme building damages.

If you have property damage and plan to file an insurance claim to cover the cost, here are some helpful tips to keep in mind.

  1. Contact your insurance company immediately and file a claim.  This will ensure you are assigned a claim number and adjuster who can review your damages and assist in rebuilding your property.  Your assigned adjuster will be the representative from your insurance company who communicates what is covered by your individual insurance policy and determines the value of your claim.
  2. After you obtain your claim number, we recommend contacting our SERVPRO office at 281-219-8180.  A team will be dispatched to your property right away to review, access and scope the damage. Additionally, we will discuss the process of restoring your property back to its original condition.  SERVPRO specializes in exterior and interior fire and water restoration services. Once your insurance claim is filed, contact SERVPRO immediately. Our team can assist with nearly all property damage repairs and will communicate with your adjuster for a swift restoration process.
  3. Always document your claim with clear photos, it's important to have detailed photos of the existing damage.  One of the standards that sets SERVPRO apart is our dedication to documenting all aspects of property losses to be able to share our photos, sketches and journal entries with insurance companies.  We are highly acclaimed among insurance adjusters for our thorough process of documenting all aspects of mitigation, remediation and reconstruction for insurance claims.

SERVPRO has well established relationships with all national insurance companies including local insurance agents, claims managers and adjusters. Calling SERVPRO is an important step for the process of repairing your property. Our goal is to restore your company in a timely manner with the highest quality. We will make it look, “Like it never even happened.”

The Connection Between Water Damage And Commercial Fire Loss Mitigation

4/8/2019 (Permalink)

This facility suffered water damage due to a fire loss.

Water damage is closely associated with the mitigation of fire loss because of the immense amount of water firefighters use to extinguish a fire. Unfortunately, water has the nature of wicking to dry. In other words, when the fire department sprays the water hose on the affected area, the carpet, walls, room framing and structure can absorb the moisture as well. Depending on the extent of the fire, water could also travel on the ceiling. When confronted by water damage, drying the structure is your first priority.

The drying process includes extracting standing water by utilizing our specialized equipment to absorb the excess moisture and circulate the dry air in the room. Our specialized equipment paired with our expert IICRC certified crew technicians provide optimal, timely and efficient drying. Ensuring the structure is completely dry prevents any future damages that can occur when moisture goes unaddressed.

Mitigation is key to reducing the loss of building materials and restoring the building quickly. Time is essential for mitigation. The longer the water sits in the building, the higher chance of increased loss on the property. SERVPRO’s top priority is to save any building materials including: drywall, insulation, wall framing and flooring that was not affected by the fire.

The Process of Commercial Fire Loss

4/5/2019 (Permalink)

This floral shop experienced severe fire damage.

When fire damage affects your business, it can be an emotional and uncertain time. Our best advice is to get a trusting professional on your side who understands the immense amount of stress and worry that comes with property damage.

If your property is ever affected by a fire, here are some helpful tips.

  1. Contact your insurance company and file a claim.
  2. Once you receive your claim number, request the assigned adjuster’s name and phone number and keep it on file.
  3. Contact SERVPRO immediately. Instant communication allows us to immediately come to the scene and begin Building Emergency Services which may also be referred to as “mitigation service” by your insurance company.  
  4. When a fire effects your building the fire department will use water to put the fire out.  The water then can be trapped within the walls, wood framing and under the flooring. It is important that your building is “dried down” not only for the safety of those who will be working to restore your building, but also to save any building materials that may otherwise need to be replaced due to prolonged water damage.
  5. Building Emergency Services include extraction of standing water on the floor, removal of any absorbent flooring materials and removal of moisture from the walls with our specialized drying equipment.
  6. Once the structure is dry and safe to work in, the next step is removing any debris caused by the fire, including effected flooring, drywall, insulation and furnishings.  
  7. After the room has been cleared, the remediation process begins.  The remediation process includes appropriate cleaning, the structure, walls, ceiling, floors and HVAC system. During this process, SERVPRO tries to reduce the cost of your claim by remediating any of your property that can be saved instead of replaced.
  8. Once the building has been remediated, the rebuild portion of your claim begins. Rebuild includes the reconstruction of any area of the property that was too far damaged to be cleaned or repaired.  This could include, the installation of new drywall, insulation, ceiling tiles, flooring and any other necessary materials.

SERVPRO communicates directly with the adjuster to create a schedule and review the damages to determine the best process for repairing your building.

3 Steps To Remove Mold From Air Conditioner Ducts

11/26/2018 (Permalink)

Dust that accumulates in your air ducts can lead to microbial growth

Mold Present In AN HVAC System

Air ducts can develop mold and spread spores throughout a building. Several HVAC components may introduce moisture into the system and cause black mold or other types of fungi to grow. Building owners can inspect some parts of this system for mold, but professionals will ensure that no mold is growing in ductwork. Follow these three steps to determine whether mold is present in an HVAC system, eliminate active growth, and reduce the number of spores.

1. Inspect the System for Mold

Depending on the HVAC system design and a property owner's skills, it may be possible to check for the presence of mold in condensate drip pans or cooling coils. If the owner is not familiar with the inner workings of the cooling system, he or she may want to hire an HVAC or duct cleaning specialist to investigate. Experts can also determine whether mold is present in ductwork, in which spores tend to adhere to surfaces.

2. Schedule a Duct Cleaning

Specialists will use professional equipment to clean air ducts. A high-powered vacuum can remove black mold as professionals clean affected areas. The cleaning service may also treat ductwork with EPA-registered mold inhibitor approved for HVAC use.

3. Look For Signs of Mold Regrowth

If mold has formed in air conditioner ducts, it may regrow unless measures are taken to address the underlying causes. Mold requires moisture and a food source in order to thrive. Clean ducts with mold inhibitor may be less likely to support mold growth, but moisture in drip pans or cooling coils may cause mold to return. Regularly inspect these components to prevent the problem from recurring.

These three steps can eliminate the presence of mold from the ductwork in a commercial structure. If a building owner suspects that black mold may be present, contact a commercial mold remediation company located in Cloverleaf,TX.

5 Tips To Protect a Building From Storms

11/19/2018 (Permalink)

Trim trees close to your Baytown,TX building to avoid storm damage to the roof

Protecting Your Building From Storms

Storms can cause significant damage to commercial buildings in Baytown,TX . Owners and property managers should take measures to ensure that each building is in good condition and capable of withstanding adverse weather conditions. These five facility management tips can limit the amount of storm damage a building sustains.

1. Schedule Regular Inspections

A building in good condition may be less likely to sustain damage from high winds or heavy rain. Check the condition of structural components from the roof, walls, and floor slab to exterior doors and windows.

2. Clear the Drainage System

Drainage plays a critical role in preventing roof damage and leaks. Roof drains, gutters, and downspouts must be clear in order to function. Downspouts should direct water away from exterior walls and the foundation of a structure. For the purposes of building protection, have this system cleaned at least twice a year.

3. Trim Nearby Trees

Trees can cause storm damage to the roof or any other part of a building. Have professionals trim back heavy overhanging limbs and prune dead branches that can become dangerous debris.

4. Redirect Water With Landscaping

If a commercial property has landscaping, the grading should direct water away from the foundation. Property owners and managers can also rely on swales, French drains, or rain gardens to prevent water from pooling.

5. Waterproof the Building Envelope and Roof

Waterproofing can protect and prolong the life of a roof. If a property is located in a flood zone, consider air barriers, capillary breaks, or vapor barriers to make the building envelope more resistant to moisture.

These five building protection tips can help to shield any commercial structure from storms. All of these measures may prevent or limit damage that results from high winds, heavy rain, or flooding. If a property sustains any damage, rely on storm damage restoration experts in Baytown,TX.

Important Things To Know About Smoke Damage in Your Office

11/19/2018 (Permalink)

Channelview,TX commercial smoke damage

In your day-to-day activities at work, you probably think a lot about typical business functions such as making sales, hiring the right employees, and providing excellent customer service. But is your organization prepared for a fire or other disaster? This type of incident could devastate your Channelview,TX, office. Smoke damage can actually be worse than the fire, so it’s important to understand its effects and what you can do in the aftermath.

Don't Overlook Smoke Damage

Even minor fires can cause damage and threaten your safety and the wellbeing of your employees. The smoke that accompanies it can prove costly in some of the following ways:

  • Soot damage: When there is complete combustion, you may see this black powdery substance on walls, ceilings and walls.
  • Document damage: Smoke can ruin important documents and cause discoloration.
  • Electronics damage: Smoke can also affect your electronic devices such as computers, printers, and servers.

Let the Pros Clean Up

It’s vital after smoke damage has occurred in your office that you work with a reputable company to help you get your office back in order. Professional technicians will start by assessing the extent of the damage. The company will then formulate a plan for smoke cleaning. This includes timelines as well as the methods the technicians will use. The companies will use high-quality equipment to clean and sanitize the affected area.

Contact Your Insurance Promptly

You can find some peace of mind following a fire knowing that you don’t have to bear the costs alone. You should place a call to your insurance agent immediately after the fire. Don’t touch anything in your building until a representative from the insurance agency has had a chance to inspect the damage.

Smoke damage can be significant, but it doesn’t have to derail your business. With the right cleanup efforts, you can restore your building in a timely manner.