The Best Way to Minimize a Disaster at Your Home or Business is to Plan for it NOW!
As many as 50% of businesses may never recover following a disaster, according to the latest industry research. Of the businesses that survive, the overwhelming majority of them had a preparedness plan in place. Pre-planning can serve as an insurance policy aimed at peace of mind. By developing a SERVPRO® Emergency READY Profile for your business, you minimize business interruption by having an immediate plan of action. Knowing what to do and what to expect in advance is the key to timely mitigation and can help minimize how water and fire damage can affect your business.
Are You Ready? Preparation is a key component for making it through any size disaster, whether it’s a small water leak, a large fire or an area flood. The best time for planning for such events is not when the event happens, but well before it happens. No one ever plans on a disaster, but you can plan for it. Now is the time to ask yourself, “Are you ready for whatever could happen?” The SERVPRO® Emergency READY Profile is a start up approach that provides the critical information needed to begin mitigation and recovery services. It is designed to serve as a quick reference of important building and contact information. By working with SERVPRO’s Emergency READY Profile, your business will receive the benefit of over 40 years of experience in reducing the impact of any natural or man-made disaster. SERVPRO® is a leader in water and fire damage response and can help you quickly get your property back in working order.
- A no cost assessment of your facility.
This means there is no need to allocate funds, giving you a great value at no cost.
- A concise Profile Document that contains only the critical information needed in the event of an emergency.
It will only take a little time to complete and will not take you away from current projects. But it will save a lot of time if ever needed.
- A guide to help you get back into your building following a disaster.
This can help minimize the amount of time your business is inactive by having an immediate plan of action.
- Establishes your local SERVPRO Franchise Professional as your disaster mitigation and restoration provider.
You have a provider that is recognized as an industry leader and close by.
- Identification of the line of command for authorizing work to begin.
This saves time so we can begin the work of mitigating the damage which can save you time and money.
- Provides facility details such as shut-off valve locations, priority areas and priority contact information.
Having a quick reference of what to do, how to do it and who to call provides solutions in advance of an emergency so that during the emergency you are "Ready for whatever happens.
Fire Damage Needs a Meticulous Clean
The dangers of fire damage can last much longer than the initial fire blaze. Two of the most toxic types of damage are the fire itself and the resulting smoke damage. Smoke and soot can damage a home by permeating through the walls, upholstery, ceiling, insulation, air conditioning vents, and other hard to clean places.
This is why it is important to understand that fire damage in Overbrook/Wynnefield homes can present itself in many ways. Depending on the type of fire that attacks your home, not only are the apparent soot, ash, and fire damage unsightly, but possible structure damage and future contamination are possible.
Never Have Your Fire Damage Overlooked Again
For example, depending on where a fire burns in a structure, it can affect support beams, load-bearing walls, and it can wreak havoc on wiring and insulation. Even if your fire emergency seemed localized to a particular area in the house, remember, the attic must be checked for damage as well.
SERVPRO uses our advanced cleanup methods and detection tools to check from closet to closet, room to room, and floor to ceiling, to detect all fire and post-fire damages. We know where to check to make sure your HVAC system will not spread smoke and toxins after a fire. We will make sure that your insulation is intact and that the structure of your home is safe. If we detect any need for replacement and restoration, we provide a range of services, including building services, that can take care of any fire and water damage and debris.
Because secondary fire damage, such as water use from firefighting efforts can also be an issue, our specialists pay much attention to a full, detailed analysis of your home’s damage before making a plan of action and beginning cleanup and restoration.
Contamination is not always seen by the untrained eye. It can be hidden in places such as your HVAC (air conditioning and heating) systems. SERVPRO inspects the home from attic to basement, to ensure that all vents and air circulating systems are completely clean. If you were to neglect this part of fire damage cleanup, there is always the possibility of blowing toxic dust, ash, and soot, even on the microscopic level, into your cleaned home, effectively re-contaminating it and exposing residents to its dangers.
Our 24/7 Emergency Service line is at your disposal. Contact SERVPRO of Overbrook/Wynnefield anytime at (215) 877-6653 for quick response to your fire emergency, or to ask questions.
Commercial Water Damage Prevention
Flooding in Department Store
Before hurricane season rolls into the area, business owners everywhere should start thinking about how to prevent commercial water damage. Everything from maintenance checks to grading systems should be checked. So how do you plan on protecting your business from water damage? Read on to find out what you should be considering.
Building and Street Maintenance
When was the last time your storm drains were cleared? Annual inspections of your floor, storm, and roof drains can help you avoid drainage problems. If your floor drains haven’t been cleaned lately, take a vacuum hose and clear it or call a professional.
There are at least two sump pumps in each sump under your building. Sump pumps are used to keep flood waters from building up and causing water damage. But are yours both working? When was the last time they were tested? Do they have battery backups in case of a power outage? Power outages were the cause of 18 percent of water damage incidents involving a sump pump. Because sump pumps run on electricity, power outages shut down the pumps allowing water to flood your facility. If these pumps are your main source of protection, you should consider a generator to keep them going.
Generator Fuel Tanks
In areas subject to flooding, it is important to relocate your generator fuel tanks out of the basement. Generator fuel can be contaminated in the event of a basement flood, prohibiting generator functions, and prevent power from reaching the pumps.
Does grading lead away from your building? Grading helps to move water away from your building instead of moving towards it. Checking your grading system can help keep water from flowing into your building.
Clear the Floor
One of the leading causes of water damage is the items on the floor. You can avoid this by removing porous materials, boxes, and paper from the floor of your basement. Keep all of your electronics off the floor and make sure to turn off your electronics when you are expecting heavy rains.
Preparing for Fall
As much fun as summer can be, it has to end at some point. As the trees begin to change and the weather shifts from hot and humid to cool and crisp, it’s time to prepare for the onset of cooler months. Whether you’re ready for hot cocoa and sweaters or are still holding on to ice cream and swim suits, there’s a lot to do to get ready for the changing seasons.
- Inspect your roof
If you have a heavy rainstorm or a foot of snow, does your roof have what it takes to hold up? Before settling in for another chilly fall and a freezing winter take a look at your roof for weak spots or cracks in your shingles and granules. If you see anything that looks off or unstable, a roofer may be what your home needs to weather this winter’s storms.
- Clean out your gutters
As the leaves begin to turn, you know you’re only weeks away from them falling off entirely and stopping up your gutters. Before you find yourself with a big mess on your hands, take the time now to clean out your gutters and drainpipes to prevent the possibility of water damage and clogs. A clean early in the season may not be sufficient through the winter, but it will make sure you’re prepared for the harsher weather to come. Water damages can be caused by clogged drains or overflowing water to collect on your roof.
Preparing your house for fall may not be what you planned to do during your weekend, but it’s something you’ll thank yourself for later. With the right measures taken now, you and your family will be prepared to settle in for the fall and winter, no matter what may be coming your way!
September is National Preparedness Month
During an emergency, the last thing you should worry about is having a plan of action. Every minute matters during an unexpected, emergency situation which is why this year’s National Preparedness Month theme is, “Don’t Wait, Communicate!”
SERVPRO of Overbrook/Wynnefield would like to encourage our neighbors to develop a game plan! Each and every household should master a particular set of steps to perform during an emergency and answer important questions ahead of time such as; Who will be in charge of contacting 911? Who will gather everyone in the household? What is the best escape method in an emergency? Etc. These questions are imperative to the safety and well being of our neighbors and families.
We encourage everyone’s focus this month to be towards developing some type of disaster/emergency ready plan. In line with the “Don’t Wait, Communicate!” theme of this year’s National Preparedness Month, SERVPRO of Overbrook/Wynnefield would like to suggest developing an Emergency Communication Plan. Several steps, listed below, can help get you started on this plan;
- Collect all of your important contact information such as; family doctor, medical facilities, local family members, schools and service providers. Compile all of this information into one, hard-copy, easily accessible sheet.
- Share copies of this sheet with everyone within the household/business. Copies of this sheet can be kept in backpacks, purses, wallets, vehicles, etc.
- Develop a fire/emergency escape plan that includes the safest escape routes, layout of home or business, safe meeting place and what to do if contact is lost.
- Monthly review/practice of all important contact information, location of contact information and emergency escape plan.
As always, SERVPRO is here to help in any emergency or disaster situation. We encourage everyone to take preparedness seriously BEFORE an emergency occurs in your home or business.
Call us today to learn more about National Preparedness Month or about our free Emergency Ready Profiles!
Mold Myths & Facts by SERVPRO of Overbrook/ Wynnfield
Mold on Drywall in Basement in Overbrook PA
At SERVPRO of Overbrook/ Wynnefield we currently get a lot of calls regarding mold in property’s. Most of the time it’s in an un-used part of the home like a basement or attic.
Some customers try to handle the project themselves and find that the mold comes back a few weeks later. Here are some myths & facts about mold and the dangers. Although if you think you have mold, you should contact SERVPRO of Overbrook/ Wynnefield to discuss the plans of actions.
MYTH NO. 1 BLEACH KILLS MOLD?
Liquid bleach is a solution of chlorine in water, usually 6 percent sodium hypochlorite, thus 94 percent water. Smearing bleach on mold may appear to kill it, but the effect is superficial and very temporary. Once the chlorine is gone - and it evaporates rapidly - what's left is all that water, feeding the mold.
There are many chemicals that kill mold. They're called biocides. That means they kill life. (Bio = life + cide = kill.)
MYTH No. 2 'Toxic' Mold is the only dangerous type of mold.
"Toxic" mold or "black" mold is often touted by the hucksters in the mold industry as being the one that makes people sick, the one you must eliminate. This is pure scare tactic.
Yes, there are some strains of mold that seem to be more toxic than others. But there is no such thing as good mold, or even tolerable mold, unless you like stinky cheese. Mold in your home is a problem, because it signifies a moisture problem. Moisture inside your home enables mold growth, and it can also lead to rot, threatening the structure itself.
On top of that, any mold problem that's allowed to continue often will pave the way for the dreaded "black mold." The most infamous "black mold," stachybotrys chartarum, is what's known as a tertiary mold. It's very slow to develop and usually follows earlier mold growths, actually feeding off the previous mold colony.
MYTH No. 3, Homeowners can property remediate mold themselves?
Homeowners are not trained or knowledgeable about mold enough to properly remediate the damages, most times homeowners cause more damage when they don’t hire a professional. Most of the errors are in the contamination process. Not using vapor barriers or the proper equipment to clean the air during removal stages. When it’s not properly sectioned off, they can cross contaminate mold threw other area of the home that previously did not have mold spores.
Fact No. 1 : Mold is everywhere and mold problems exist indoors in every climate.
Mold is, literally, everywhere on the planet, in every climate. A house in the Mojave Desert can have a mold problem as easily as one in Florida or New Orleans.
Mold needs three things to thrive: moisture, food, and the right temperature. Moisture can collect in walls, attics and crawl spaces in the driest of climates with a little help, such as a roof or siding leak, plumbing flaw, and pressure differentials created by air conditioning, or even a poorly vented bathroom.
Food for mold is pretty much everything we build with and everything we own. Mold loves household dust... even in the kitchen sink. And the warmth mold needs is the same temperature range humans prefer.
Bottom line: Every home has mold but not every home has a mold problem. If you think you might have a mold problem, don't ignore it. Get help.
Fact No. 2 Home inspectors don't know mold.
Home inspectors - the ones who check out a house prior to sale - are generally ignorant about mold. Many inspectors will see mold and ignore it because there's no rot or obvious moisture. Others may not see it at all.
If you think you have mold in your property, call a professional remediation company like SERVPRO of Overbrook/ Wynnefield