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Ensuring Accurate Claims With Disaster Response Services

2/18/2019 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO Ensuring Accurate Claims With Disaster Response Services SERVPRO of North Tempe is a leader in the restoration industry

Ensuring Accurate Claims With Disaster Response Services

Insurance claim services can feel overwhelming, especially after experiencing a major disaster. Unfortunately, the claims process is necessary for comprehensive restoration to begin. Therefore, it is best to speak with qualified individuals who can help to walk you through the restoration process as well as what to expect out of the claims procedure. While your insurer can help with some of this information, you can also speak with disaster restoration specialists. These companies are experts in the processes and bureaucratic procedures, and they follow a strict routine to ensure your claim is accurate.

1. Mitigation As Protection

The first goal of emergency response is to prevent further loss through a process called mitigation. This process entails the use of plywood, tarps, and fencing to protect your property against weather, vagrants, animals and any number of other issues. Also, mitigation reduces the chances of your claim being rejected due to negligence.

2. Cleanout for Accurate Proof of Loss

Claim services are a procedural service, meaning that there is a designated path to approval. Any adjustments made to a claim can send it back to the beginning, prolonging the approval process and postponing restoration. Disaster response companies specialize in rapid cleanup, making all damage apparent and allowing for an accurate proof of loss statement the first time around.

3. Controlled and Monitored Restoration

While an insurer bases claim value off estimates, those assessments do you no good without a company that stands by its prices and services. SERVPRO is a leader in the restoration industry, and it has built that reputation on its ability to accurately control and monitor costs. Review the database of claims for the Tempe, AZ, area to get a rough ballpark estimate of what your project may cost.

While it may seem unlikely, a disaster restoration company can be your biggest ally as you work through the claim services process of your insurer. These companies want to help you get back in your home by ensuring your claim is protected, accurate and honestly executed.

Is Storm Damage The Same As Flooding?

2/13/2019 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Is Storm Damage The Same As Flooding? Broken window due to storm damage in Tempe, AZ

When it comes to commercial property insurance coverage, there are significant differences between storm damage and flood damage. General policies cover most damage caused by storms, but exclude flooding. Learn more about these two types of damage.

Damage Caused By Storms

Many storms come with weather conditions such as high winds, heavy rain or snow. Coastal locations may also be at risk for hurricanes and tropical storms, and tornadoes can pose a threat to inland areas. Regardless of the type of storm, a property may sustain several types of damage:

  • Broken windows
  • Hail damage
  • Roof leaks
  • Structural damage

Commercial property insurance should cover all of these forms of damage. A policyholder can increase the likelihood that an insurer will cover a claim by keeping detailed maintenance records and submitting photographs or video footage of the portion of a structure affected by a storm.

Damage Caused By Floods

The term "flood" is used to designate water that comes from outside. This may include several different sources:

  • Heavy rain
  • Rising bodies of water
  • Overflowing sewer mains

Most standard insurance policies exclude flood damage. Owners of property located on a flood plain should obtain a flood policy through the National Flood Insurance Program or a rider on a commercial property policy. Additional coverage will probably be necessary for sewer damage caused by a backup.

Covered Perils and Exclusions

Most forms of storm damage should be covered by a commercial property policy. Building owners should familiarize themselves with the terms and limits of this coverage to determine whether to take out supplemental policies or riders. Additional coverage will probably be necessary for cleaning up and remediating flood or sewer damage.

These are the main distinctions between storm and flood damage. A property insurance policy, flood policy, and endorsements can cover the costs of damage mitigation and restoration at a commercial building in Tempe, AZ.

5 Smoke Damage Restoration Methods

2/5/2019 (Permalink)

Fire Damage 5 Smoke Damage Restoration Methods An ozone generator is a fast and highly effective smoke odor restoration method

5 Treatment Methods to Eliminate Smoke Damage

A variety of smoke cleaning methods are available to homeowners. In addition to using degreasing solutions to remove residues from surfaces and contents, it is also possible to lower the concentration of smoke molecules in the air and neutralize persistent odors. Restoration professionals rely on these five treatment methods to eliminate smoke damage.

1. Run an Air Scrubber or Filter

An HVAC air scrubber or HEPA air purifier are useful for capturing larger smoke molecules. There will still be some residual odor from smaller molecules or surface residues.

2. Use an Ozone Generator

An ozone generator is a fast and highly effective smoke odor restoration method. These machines emit ozone, which follows the same paths through the air as smoke and oxidizes any residual traces in the air or on surfaces. Evacuation is necessary for the duration of an ozone treatment.

3. Arrange for Thermal Fogging

Thermal fogging is an intensive treatment involving fogging machines. After residents evacuate, smoke cleaning professionals fill a structure with petroleum distillates that neutralize odors and then ventilate the area. Evacuation is also necessary during this treatment, and workers should wear chemical respirators.

4. Operate a Hydroxyl Generator

A hydroxyl generator is a slower and gentler alternative to ozone. These machines rely on UV light to generate hydroxyl radicals that eliminate smoke odors. It will take about three to five days of continuous operation to achieve the same results as a single ozone treatment, but evacuation is not necessary.

5. Try Vapor Modification

Vapor modification is another odor elimination method that relies on aromatic compounds and a blower or fan to neutralize smoke odor. This method also does not require evacuation.

Any of these smoke cleaning methods may be the right choice for a residence in Tempe,AZ. Contact a smoke and fire damage restoration company to determine which treatment is right for your home.

Using Bread To Understand Mold

1/25/2019 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation Using Bread To Understand Mold Mold spores thrive on moisture

You have many responsibilities for maintaining your home in Tempe,AZ, and staying mold-free is an important one. Reviewing your experience with bread mold is a great way to understand the impact of mold in your home. Why does mold grow on bread?

1. Mold spores are everywhere.
Most people store their bread in a plastic bag, yet mold will still grow thanks to the fact that spores are lightweight and travel through the air. The little bit of exposure your bread gets from opening the bag is enough to allow spore-containing air to enter. This is similar to the way mold spores get in your home: traveling on the air and entering through doors, windows and vents.

2. Mold grows in a moist environment.
You don’t see croutons covered in mold and that’s because there is not enough moisture. People love bread when it is soft and moist, and that moisture is exactly what fungus growth needs to thrive. That’s why controlling relative humidity and repairing water leaks are both important jobs to prevent mold growth in the home.

3. Mold needs a food source.
All mold needs an organic food source, and most molds have favorites. When it comes to bread mold, there are certain varieties that tend to colonize on bread. This is also true for homes, since most building materials are made from cellulose-based materials, and the molds that prefer that food source tend to colonize there.

Can’t You Just Change the Temperature?

While most molds prefer a warmer temperature, many varieties can handle a cooler environment, which is why you find fridge mold. You can prevent mold by freezing bread, but you can’t freeze your home.

With the lessons learned from bread mold, you can see that moisture control is the key to preventing household mold problems. If you already have mold, it’s important to get help fast since mold multiplies rapidly. Expert mold remediators are knowledgeable and use a variety of techniques to help prevent the further spread of mold during the clean-up process.

How Do Restoration Experts Clean Electronics After a Fire?

1/23/2019 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO How Do Restoration Experts Clean Electronics After a Fire? Keep computer files backed up on an external hard drive or cloud in case of fire damage

Electronics can easily become damaged in the event of a fire at a commercial property. Appliances and devices close to the fire may melt or warp and become unusable. Even electronics that are some distance away may sustain smoke damage that can cause short circuiting and result in an electrical fire. Electronics and computer cleanup experts can take several measures to reduce the risk of fire and restore data that might otherwise be lost.

Assessing Fire Damage

Electronics may become damaged or unpredictable after exposure to fire or smoke. Several common consequences include:

  • Warping due to the heat of the fire
  • Corrosion due to the acidity of smoke
  • Black film coating due to soot

If a device short circuits, it can cause an electrical fire. Do not attempt to turn on electronics before handing them over to cleaning experts. Specialists can check for signs of damage and clean delicate components. 

Removing Residual Debris

All build-up should be removed before a device that has been exposed to fire or smoke is tested. Restoration experts may:

  • Clean circuits and other metal components
  • Wipe off black film
  • Vacuum out ash and soot

These methods may increase the likelihood that an electronic device can be repaired. If the device is any type of computer system, these specialists may back up or transfer data.

Backing Up Data

Regardless of whether a device seems to be functioning normally, it is still a good idea to back up data. An electronics cleaning service may offer to:

  • Transfer data to a replacement device
  • Back up data to a storage medium
  • Upload data to secure cloud storage

Rely on the specialized services of a damage mitigation and restoration company after a fire at a commercial property in Tempe,AZ. These computer cleanup specialists can increase the chances of retaining important data while lowering the risk of an electrical fire.

Protecting Your Home While You Are Away

1/18/2019 (Permalink)

Water Damage Protecting Your Home While You Are Away Make sure your rain gutters are clear of debris

A vacation should be a relaxing time away from the everyday worries you face. Returning to find your home in Tempe,AZ, has water damage can negate those good feelings in a hurry. Checking off the following tasks, including gutter cleaning and water pipe repair, before you leave can ease your mind and let you truly enjoy your time away.

Inspect

A good way to protect your home is to make sure everything is in working order. While you are planning what to pack, you should also walk through and inspect the areas where water can invade your home:

  • Are hoses and supply lines to appliances such as washing machines and ice-makers free of visible damage?
  • Are pipes under the sinks leak-free?
  • Are windows sealed against outside leaks?
  • Is the water heater free of rust and cracks?
  • Does the sump pump operate properly?
  • Are pipes well-insulated against freezing temperatures?

Take the time before you leave to fix any problems. Preliminary water pipe repair keeps you from coming home to a mess.

Clean

Many homeowners return home to find that their houses are flooded due to clogs. Make sure rain gutters and downspouts are clear of debris. Clear out your sump pump so that it runs efficiently, if needed. Regular inspection of sewer lines lets you know if you need repairs before you leave to keep those pipes clear.

Delegate

Despite your best preparation, a broken pipe can still cause damage when you aren't home. It's smart to have trusted neighbors check on your home while you are on vacation. Make sure they know how to turn off the water main and which water remediation specialists to call if a problem happens. If no one is available to watch your home, it's best to turn off the water main before you leave.

The best time for water pipe repair and maintenance is before you leave on vacation. Knowing your home is safe from water damage can give you peace of mind during your trip.

Fire Restoration Professionals: Why You Should Call a Professional for Your Remediation Needs

1/11/2019 (Permalink)

Commercial Fire Restoration Professionals: Why You Should Call a Professional for Your Remediation Needs Contact a fire restoration company in the Tempe,AZ area

Fire Restoration Professionals

A commercial fire is often severely damaging for business owners, and the fire damage restoration process can be intimidating. Thankfully, you can enlist the help of a disaster restoration specialist in the Tempe,AZ, area to take on the brunt of the work.

1. Availability

Most of these professional services offer 24 hour-a-day and seven-days-a-week availability, meaning that they are ready and willing to work whenever a disaster strikes your building. You can even call the company in the middle of the night during a holiday, and they can quickly be there to offer assistance in whatever way they can.

2. Assessment

Fire damage restoration experts will likely start by offering a free assessment of your property. They may walk the area, taking note of all structural damage and property loss, listening to your concerns, and offering an estimate of the work to be completed. Also, the individuals who provide the estimate will likely be the managers of your entire project.

3. Security

Beyond the initial assessment, most restoration companies offer tarping and board-up services to mitigate further loss and ensure the security of your facility. Some companies will even provide 24-hour surveillance, either in person or video. Whichever company you choose, make sure that the protection of your property is a priority because receiving your insurance coverage may depend on it.

4. Cleanup

While many of these companies advertise some expertise in water, fire and smoke cleanup, they may also be experts in several disciplines. Additionally, most companies can act as intermediaries between contractors, so you can rest assured that your business is cleaned, repaired and rebuilt with the least amount of stress as possible.

The fire damage restoration process can be grueling, but it doesn’t have to be your burden alone. Most restoration companies have excellent contractors in-house and have outstanding project managers as well. Reduce your stress and hire a skilled restoration team.

3 Reasons Why Your Home’s Plumbing Pipes Might Be Noisy

12/28/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage 3 Reasons Why Your Home’s Plumbing Pipes Might Be Noisy Your Tempe, AZ, home’s noisy pipes can be indicative of a pipe break in the near future

3 Reasons Why Your Home’s Plumbing Pipes Might Be Noisy 

You might be used to all the sounds your Tempe, AZ, home makes, from a squeaky stair to a rattling windowpane in your attic. However, when your plumbing starts making new and unusual sounds, it is not something you want to ignore. Banging, squealing and knocking may indicate an imminent malfunction, such as a pipe break, so noting these noises and taking action can be important for preventing serious indoor floods.

1. Pipe Obstructions

If your pipes are squealing or whistling, there might be several causes. The first is a pipe blockage, which can narrow the water’s path and create the noise. This can be especially common in areas with hard water, where calcium or lime can build up inside the pipes. Loose screws and old or distorted washers inside the faucet’s hardware might also be to blame. You can chase down the issue by turning faucets on and off in your bathrooms until you find the source of the whistling.

2. Loose Pipe Clamps

When the water in your home is shut off and your pipes bang and chatter for several moments, this can be startling as well as troublesome. This noise usually means one of your pipes has a loose or missing clamp, and the vibrations could eventually lead to a pipe burst unless it is located and strapped down. If you cannot find a spare strap, you can pad the area between the pipe and the wall to reduce the sound.

3. Failing Pipe Joints

If you hear hissing sounds while the water is running, this could mean a pipe break is imminent. When the water is forced between two plumbing joints where the seal is failing, it can cause this odd sound. Have a flood damage and remediation service in to inspect and fix broken pipe joints before they burst.

Your Tempe, AZ, home’s noisy pipes can be indicative of a pipe break in the near future. Knowing what causes these sounds can help you prevent flooding and the damage it causes.

Beginning the Fire Insurance Claims Process

12/28/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Beginning the Fire Insurance Claims Process Fire damage in Tempe, AZ

Beginning the Fire Insurance Claims Process

After the initial response to a fire, fire restoration cannot begin until the homeowner makes an accurate assessment of the expected costs. Contact your insurer to begin the claims process immediately, but keep the following tips in mind to ensure that everything goes as smoothly as possible in Tempe, AZ.

1. Safety and Salvage

Comply with local building and zoning laws to ascertain whether your home is still in livable condition and compliant with relevant fire codes. Your fire insurance policy should cover alternative housing, such as a hotel or a rental home, until such time as repairs can be completed. If there is no immediate risk, then the homeowner should make sure that no further damage is in progress, as this may not be covered by the policy. For example, any water used to suppress the fire should be drained and adjacent surfaces dried. Be especially careful of any exposed wiring or other electrical systems that may have incurred damage.

2. Documentation

The insurance agency will prepare to send and adjuster to validate your claims. You can expedite this process by taking photographs of affected areas and making a detailed list of damaged items. Depending on your coverage, you will likely also need to keep a list of your immediate expenses related to the fire. Do not begin any fire restoration or repairs at this stage.

3. Claims and Repairs

Once the claim has been confirmed and the insurance agency has determined the amount and type of repairs needed, the steps toward restoring your property to its normal condition can begin. For example, a qualified fire cleanup service may begin a smoke cleaning method during which soot and residue are removed from the ceiling and walls.

A prudent fire plan includes not only an adequate insurance policy, but also the required knowledge to get the required fire restoration started. Prevent unnecessary delays by familiarizing yourself with your insurer’s claims process.

4 Steps To Restore a Wood Floor

12/28/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial 4 Steps To Restore a Wood Floor Wood floor damage in a Tempe, AZ commercial building

4 Steps To Restore a Wood Floor

It is important to dry a wood floor as soon as you notice signs of water damage. Water from a leak or pipe burst can cause wood to warp or result in other forms of damage. Here are four steps that may be necessary to restore wood flooring.

1. Remove Water

Removing standing water is the first step to restoring flooring. This may require the use of a pump or wet vac for damage caused by a flood, pipe burst, or leak. Use a mop or towels for slight damage. If a small amount of water has spilled and remained on the floor, spread out newspaper and allow it to absorb water.

2. Dry Moisture

After standing water is gone, use a dehumidifier to draw moisture out of wood. Ventilation can also be helpful. It is necessary to determine whether water has penetrated through the polyurethane coating or another sealing treatment. It may be necessary to tear out and replace the subfloor, taking time to allow the underlying concrete to dry, to prevent mold growth.

3. Sand and Scrape

Once all of the levels of flooring are dry, it is time to work on the appearance and condition of the surface. Wooden planks damaged by water may warp or become discolored. Sanding and scraping may even the surface and remove stains. Rely on the expertise of water damage restoration professionals.

4. Refinish or Retrofit

Wood flooring exposed to water may need to be refinished. Planks with severe damage can be removed and replacements retrofitted. Restoration experts can recommend the best solution for each case of water damage.

Keep in mind that wood flooring may add several days to water damage restoration, particularly in cases of extensive damage caused by a flood or pipe burst. This is necessary to restore the condition of a wet floor and prevent secondary damage, such as mold. Contact a service with experience restoring wood floors at commercial properties in Tempe, AZ.