Recent Posts

What to Do or Not Do After A Water Damage

10/7/2021 (Permalink)

“I have a water damage in my home. Can you help me?” No homeowner wants to make that call, but it unfortunately happens to many. Once you’ve made the call to SERVPRO of West Orange, what can you do?

Thankfully our staff is trained to walk you through the job process and offer some tips you can use to help mitigate your loss while you wait on our crews to arrive. Here is a list of some of do’s and don’ts that might also help.

DO:

  • Shut off the source of water if possible or contact a qualified party to stop the source of water.
  • Turn off circuit breakers for wet areas of the building when access to the power distribution panel is safe from electrical shock.
  • Remove as much excess water as possible by mopping and blotting.
  • Wipe excess water from wood furniture after removing lamps and tabletop items.
  • Remove and prop up wet upholstery cushions for even drying.
  • Place aluminum foil or wood blocks between furniture legs and wet carpeting.
  • Remove to a safe, dry place any paintings, art objects, computers, documents and other materials that are valuable or sensitive to moisture.
  • Use wooden clothespins to keep furniture skirting off damp floors.
  • Hang draperies with coated hangers to avoid contact with wet carpeting or floors.
  • Hang furs and leather goods to dry separately at room temperature.

DON’T:

  • Enter rooms with standing water where electrical shock hazards may exist.
  • Enter affected areas if electrical outlets, switches, circuit breakers or electrical equipment are exposed to water. Always avoid electrical shocks hazards.
  • Leave books, newspapers, magazines or other colored items on wet carpets or floors to cause staining.
  • Leave Oriental rugs or other colored rugs on wet wall-to-wall carpets to cause staining.
  • Use your household vacuum cleaner to remove water, possibly causing electrical shock or damage to the vacuum cleaner.
  • Use TV’s or other appliances while standing on wet carpets or floors, especially not on wet concrete floors.
  • Turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet or enter rooms where ceilings are sagging from retained water.

Rest assured these tips will help you begin to mitigate your loss while our team of IICRC certified technicians is on the way. Please feel free to call us anytime at 407-352-1569.

SERVPRO-Faster to YOUR Disaster

10/6/2021 (Permalink)

When a storm hits what do you do? First things first, secure your family. Next-assess your home. Once you see the damage who do you call? Who is the best? Who can reach you the fastest?

SERVPRO is uniquely set up to manage storm response on a massive scale. That means that we can get to YOU and your home faster than others. Teams from all over the country will mobilize to support our community in a time of need. All of our teams adhere to the same high standards so that we can always provide excellent service. We have the right equipment, procedures and training to make sure your home or business is dry the first time, saving you time and money.

SERVPRO of West Orange is “Here to Help”-any day, anytime, anywhere. Feel free to save our phone number so you have easy access to us when you need us-407-352-1569.

Storm Preparation is Key

10/6/2021 (Permalink)

Central Florida is well known for storm season. We are all familiar with the steps we need to take to prepare our homes and businesses, but a little reminder never hurts! Here is a list of tips from FEMA-the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

For your Home:

  • Cover all of your home’s windows with precut plywood or hurricane shutters to protect your windows from high winds.
  • Plan to bring in all outside furniture, decorations, garbage cans and anything else that is not tied down.
  • Keep all trees and shrubs well trimmed so they are more wind resistant.
  • Turn off utilities if/when instructed. Otherwise, turn the refrigerator thermostat to its coldest setting and keep its doors closed.
  • Turn off propane tanks.
  • Ensure a supply of water for sanitary purposes such as cleaning and flushing toilets. Fill the bathtub and other large containers with water.

For your Business:

  • Carefully assess how your company functions, both internally and externally, to determine which staff, materials, procedures, and equipment are absolutely necessary to keep the business operating.
  • Identify operations critical to survival and recovery.
  • Plan what you will do if your building is not accessible. Can you run the business from a different location or your home?
  • Develop relationships with other companies to use their facilities in case a disaster makes your location unusable.

SERVPRO of West Orange is “Here to Help” after the storm passes.

Flooded Streets in Magic Kingdom!

8/2/2021 (Permalink)

Lake Buena Vista Florida-Home of Disney’s Magic Kingdom and your friendly neighborhood SERVPRO office, SERVPRO of West Orange. Here in the Lake Buena vista area we are all very familiar with afternoon thunderstorms. In fact, most people joke about how crazy our weather is. It can be hot and sunny one minute and the next we could be standing in a torrential downpour, quickly returning to the insane hot and humid we all know and some of us love.

Last week we were hit by one of these famous downpours. It caused some flooding to some of the streets in Magic Kingdom. Park guests made the best of it. Kids were seen splashing in the water as their parents watched from the cover of the closest buildings. Thankfully no damage has been reported to the park itself.

Sometimes these kinds of storms can lead to interior damage of buildings and homes. If you ever find yourself in need of assistance after a storm please call us at 407-352-1569. Your restoration professionals here at SERVPRO of West Orange would be happy to help you get everything cleaned back up and dried out so you can move on to playing in the rain again, just like those kids at Magic Kingdom!

What Can you Expect from SERVPRO of West Orange after a Hurricane?

7/30/2021 (Permalink)

SERVPRO is tracking severe weather SERVPRO of West Orange is vigilant during storm season and is Here to Help after the storm passes.

Living in Central Florida has its advantages. Beautiful communities like Windemere, Bay Hill, and Isleworth surround.We are close to Walt Disney World, Universal Studios, Sea World, and the many beautiful natural attractions-springs and beaches-awesome multi-cultural restaurants, and the I-4 Eyesore. Ok, that last one is a joke! We are also very familiar with hurricane season. While we may not always be in the major cone, we often experience some severe weather associated with these major storms. Here at SERVPRO we are available immediately by phone, and once it is safe for our crews to be on the road we will dispatch them to you. What can you expect if you call us?

  • Our staff will answer your call. Our staff is trained for these situations. We believe that it is imperative for you to speak to us directly, not our answering service during times of disaster. Our phones are answered by staff for the initial days after a storm event so that we can best serve our community.
  • Be prepared to answer a few questions. We need to gather some information for our technicians so that they can be properly prepared to help you. This means we need to understand what areas of damage you’re currently seeing. Do you have water and power? Do you need a roof tarp or board up? All of these are critical questions. We know that you are concerned about your family and your home. We are too. We want to do the best job for you.
  • We will advise you of what is generally expected regarding payment. Some insurance companies operate differently during a storm event. They may advise that we collect payment up front, or they may advise that we wait to collect. Either way, you can be sure that we will be up front and clear with you about what to expect regarding pricing at the time of your service.
  • Calls are dispatched to crews as soon as possible. While we wish we could get to everyone immediately it is physically not possible. We do however have the power of SERVPRO behind us. While we are busy working with customers on the phone we know that our SERVPRO team from around the country is on the way to back us up. We generally have additional crews in the area within hours. Our goal at SERVPRO is always to serve our community, and we have the backing of over 1,000 other offices to help us accomplish that!
  • Safety is our top priority. Please make sure to let us know about downed trees or power lines around you if you are aware of them. Our crews typically are in large trucks. We will do everything in our power to get to you as quickly and safely as possible.

We hope that our communities stay safe this hurricane season, but if you need us we are Here to Help!

Expectation vs Reality-Fire Damage-Why You Need to Call SERVPRO

7/30/2021 (Permalink)

A fire in your home or business is one of the most detrimental things that can happen. Safety is of course the top concern, followed by the realization that there is a big mess to clean up and belongings to catalog for your insurance company. This just adds to the stress and trauma of the event you’ve just lived through. Here at SERVPRO of West Orange we are Here to Help.

When most people think of a fire damaged home we think of what is shown on the news, what the industry generally refers to as a total loss. The truth is that there are many smaller fires that happen daily. These fires are caught soon enough that the home or business isn’t a total loss, but there is a large amount of cleaning that needs to be done. The expectation is that with a little patience and elbow grease you can handle this yourself. In reality, most cleaning agents on the market are only going to make the mess bigger, smearing soot you didn’t even see at first.

SERVPRO fire restoration professionals are trained to handle these situations. Our team uses a step by step process to mitigate the damage caused by even the smallest fire along with special cleaning techniques that remove soot instead of smearing it. So, instead of adding more stress to your plate after a fire loss, give us a call. We are local to your community, serving Windermere, Bay Lake, Isleworth and surrounding areas.

10 Common Misconceptions or Complaints about Water Damages

7/30/2021 (Permalink)

Water damages are one of those things that seem like they should be easy to remedy to most people. Here are 10 common misconceptions and complaints we run into. Hopefully this helps you navigate your loss if you ever have one.

  1. “Can’t I just put in some fans?” Fans help, yes, but are not the only part of the drying equation. Fans help to push the moisture from your walls, ceilings, and floors into the air, and our commercial dehumidifiers help to pull all that water out of the air. Through a formula known as Psychrometry we can determine how many air exchanges it will take to dry your home or business with the equipment we place. Thats some fancy math!
  2. “I’ll just rip up my flooring. Insurance will replace it.” Hold up, wait a minute! Often flooring can be dried in place and then cleaned after it is dry. It is more cost effective to do this than to replace flooring that is still in good condition. Ultimately saving claim funds is better for you and your insurance company.
  3. “Open the doors and windows to help it dry out.” We are begging you, PLEASE do not do this unless you are instructed to by a water damage professional. If you live in a climate that is humid (hello Central Florida, looking at you) it is going to be more detrimental than helpful. The goal is to dry your structure, the natural humidity is going to make that worse. In fact, it would be better to turn your AC down so that it stays on until we get there with commercial equipment to begin drying.
  4. “UGH, this equipment is so HOT and so LOUD! I’m turning it off because I can’t sleep, work, or think!” You aren’t wrong. It is loud. It is hot. And it does make work, sleep, and even thinking hard to do. We PROMISE that if you stick with it and allow the equipment to do its job your home or business will dry much faster than if you turn it off and it only gets to work in small increments. Also, turning equipment off and allowing moisture to stay trapped will potentially lead to microbial growth (yep MOLD). I can promise you that 5 days of drying equipment is better than 10 days of mold remediation…not to mention that improperly handling your water damage can open issues with coverage for your claim with your insurance company. Trust me, it’s worth it to leave the loud, hot equipment on.
  5. “I thought you said you were getting paid by the insurance company. Why are you sending me a bill?” Our company works with all insurance companies. That being said, as the policy holder YOU are the one that the insurance company will send payment to (about half of the time). You will then need to forward payment to us. We do submit billing to the insurance company for you and we do work with your adjuster to close out payment for our services. We will also do our best to help you through the claim process. Ultimately, as the homeowner, or business owner, it is up to you to make sure payment is received for services rendered. If your insurance company determines that your loss is not covered by your policy you will be responsible for payment. We will always do our best to work with our customers if this is necessary.
  6. “I heard it only takes 3 days to dry out a house.” While it is true that many homes can be dried in a few days every structure is different. There are MANY unforeseen circumstances that can affect drying time. There are certain “best practices” that we adhere to for drying that help ensure timely progress. We also perform moisture inspections daily during a dry-out. This allows us to reposition equipment if we need to, remove equipment from areas that have dried, and to make sure that we are watching progress of anything that may require additional help.
  7. “I’m paying for this myself, so please don’t charge me what you charge an insurance company.” Our industry uses a couple of different software platforms for estimating/breaking down a job. Those platforms set the pricing. Insurance companies also use these systems, but the pricing is not “for” the insurance company. They’re getting the same pricing as you!
  8. “Who trains you?” The IICRC-Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification-is who we are certified and trained by primarily. (Here is the link to the about section of their web site https://www.IICRC.org/general/custom.asp?page=AbouttheIICRC). Any time you need a restoration professional you want to verify that they are a certified firm. You can do this by checking the IICRC site or asking for a copy of the firm’s certificate. Aside from the professional training by the IICRC, we offer in house training as well as additional training from other industry organizations.
  9. “Who is paying the power bill after you leave all that equipment plugged in?” We suggest that you reach out to your assigned insurance adjuster and ask if this is something that your policy will cover. In some cases, they need to see your bill for the month before and the month after, to show that there was an increase in usage. However, thanks to technology advancements, unless you’re dealing with a large amount of equipment for a long time, I doubt you’ll notice too much of a difference.
  10. “All of you water damage companies are the same”…. I beg to differ. This is personal for us. We are all here because we want to help. We know that having your home or business turned upside down is stressful. Unfortunately for most people, LIFE is stressful these days. Add a water damage to the mix and it’s almost more than anyone can take. We are here to help you through that. Not only do we care, but our company has been in business over 35 years! There just aren’t that many companies in our industry that can say that. Know why? The industry isn’t THAT old. It’s only been since people started having things like air conditioning, drywall, hot water heaters, appliances, and double paned windows that there was a need. Our industry is constantly growing and changing, and we are proud to have been at the forefront of that growth for so long.

Remember, nothing beats the restoration pros at SERVPRO of West Orange. The best thing to do in case of water damage at your home or business is give us a call. We will help make it Like it Never Even Happened. 

Commercial Fire-Be Prepared!

7/14/2021 (Permalink)

Commercial buildings have come a long way in fire safety in recent years. Thankfully many are equipped with sprinkler systems or other fire suppressant systems. Most also have multiple fire extinguishers on hand as well as fire exit plans posted. But do your employees know how these systems work? Here are a few tips to help ensure that your equipment is working correctly and that your staff knows what to do in case of fire emergency.

  1. Fire Alarms. Fire Alarms should be checked regularly to confirm they are functioning properly. This is the first line of defense in an emergency. This alerts your staff and customers that they need to quickly exit the building.
  2. Fire Extinguishers. Do you have enough fire extinguishers on hand? No employee should have to travel more than 75 feet to reach one. Do you your employees know where they are or how to use one? These are important safety measures to go over.
  3. Emergency Exit Lights. Confirm that all of your emergency exit lights are correctly placed and are functioning. They should illuminate when main power is off. This helps people to find the exit quickly in the case of emergency when tensions are high and visibility may be lost. Exit signs should have a test button that you can use to regularly ensure that they are functioning correctly.
  4. Fire Suppression Systems. Many commercial buildings have fire suppression systems in place. It is important that these be inspected regularly by a licensed inspector. Be sure that your staff understands how they work.

It is important to have a plan in place to prevent commercial fires, but it is equally important to have a plan in place in case something does happen. Here at SERVPRO we offer an Emergency Ready Plan, or ERP to all local businesses. This plan puts all of the information you and your staff might need into one document that can be accessed by an app that you can load onto any device. This plan will note where all of your emergency shut-offs are as well as key personnel that needs to be notified. It also gives you quick access to our office so we can immediately begin to mitigate your loss and get your business back on track.

SERVPRO of West Orange services all cities in the Orange County area including but not limited to, Windermere, Winter Garden, Ocoee, Lake Buena Vista, Dr. Phillips, Bay Lake, and many more. 

Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned-What it Means for Your Business

6/8/2021 (Permalink)

It has been a long year. 2020 brought fear and uncertainty. Many have lost people they loved to the COVID-19 virus. Restrictions were put into place for the protection of the public. This meant business closures at first. Then working from home and grocery pick up became the norm for many of us, followed by mask mandates when in public in many states. Our lives changed collectively.

Now that things are opening back up, we are still told to be cautious. Some companies are still allowing employees to work from home while others need to have their staff back in the office. What can you do to give your employees and yourself peace of mind before they come back to the office? What about your customers? If your business is open to the public, how can you ensure that it stays clean?

SERVPRO offers a service called Certified SERVPRO Clean. Each franchise, including SERVPRO of West Orange, offers this service. This type of service is a proactive viral pathogen cleaning. We will utilize multiple methods of cleaning to ensure every surface, nook, and cranny are clean, sanitized, and disinfected. When the service is complete you will receive a window decal that will show the date the building was last sanitized and disinfected. We are proud to offer this service to our communities. Together we will come back strong!

SERVPRO of West Orange services all cities in the Orange County area including but not limited to, Windermere, Winter Garden, Ocoee, Lake Buena Vista, Dr. Phillips, Bay Lake, and many more. 

ERP for Business

6/4/2021 (Permalink)

ERP Logo As many of 50% of businesses may never recover following a disaster.

50% of businesses may never recover following a disaster.

Of the businesses that survive, the overwhelming majority of them had a preparedness plan in place. 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.

The SERVPRO Emergency Ready Plan is a proactive 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.

The SERVPRO Emergency Ready Profile is:

  1. No cost assessment of your facility
  2. An app on your phone that contains critical information needed in the event of an emergency
  3. A guide to help you get back into your building following a disaster
  4. Critical facility details such as shut-off valve locations, priority areas and priority contact information

Contact us today for a free consultation on steps to safeguard your business.

Are you prepared for a disaster?

Call us at (407) 352-1569. 

SERVPRO of West Orange services all cities in the Orange County area including but not limited to, Windermere, Winter Garden, Ocoee, Lake Buena Vista, Dr. Phillips, Bay Lake, and many more.