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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Archived Blog Posts

Central Florida Fire Damage Restoration: What are the steps involved?

4/10/2020 (Permalink)

The hours, days and weeks following a fire in your home or business can be simply overwhelming. Surrounded by your soot-covered and flame-damaged possessions, it’s easy to lose sight of the big picture: As long as everyone got out, thanks to proper disaster planning and preparation, everything else is just stuff. But once the smoke clears, you will need to deal with that stuff, and the sooner the better.

Your restoration team should work with your insurance company to initiate a fire damage recovery plan that includes the complete restoration of your structure. Again, if your team is truly “full service,” the construction side will assess the structural damages while the cleaning and restoration specialists will work closely with you and your adjustor to determine which of your possessions can be cleaned…and which need to be inventoried for replacement. Often these services can be provided on site, but in the event that your contents have to be removed, make sure your team also offers the capability to electronically inventory, package, transport and store your belongings in a safe, climate controlled facility.

Now that you know the initial steps of the fire damage recovery process, here are a few tips on what NOT to do before the pros arrive:

  • Do not wipe or attempt to wash fire residue from walls, ceilings, or other absorbent surfaces
  • Do not use carpeting or upholstered furniture impacted by heavy smoke residues or debris
  • Do not use food items or canned goods exposed to heat
  • Do not turn on computers, televisions, stereos or electrical appliances until they have been professionally cleaned and checked

With preparation, resources, and trusted professionals in place—plus a healthy dose of patience and perspective, after the fact—you and your family or co-workers will make it through the process of fire damage recovery. We hope that you never have to deal with any of this, but if you do, know that our team here at SERVPRO of West Orange will be there to help you through it.

We are Cleaning Experts

3/18/2020 (Permalink)

SERVPRO is Here to Help during this time of need

During this unprecedented time caused by the global pandemic of coronavirus, this is a reminder to our customers that we are specialists in cleaning services, and we adhere to the highest cleaning and sanitation standards.

Specialized Training

We are prepared to clean and disinfect your home or business, according to protocols set forth by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. We have years of experience in dealing with biological contaminants, and we will go beyond the scope of work that regular janitorial staff perform on a daily basis.

The CDC encourages cleaning of high-touch surfaces such as counters, tabletops, doorknobs, light switches, bathroom fixtures, toilets, phones, keyboards, tablets and tables. Other spaces mentioned in the CDC’s guidance for commercial spaces include:

  • Kitchen/Food Areas
  • Bathrooms
  • Schools/Classrooms
  • Offices
  • Retail Spaces
  • Water Fountains
  • Shelving/Racks
  • Sales Counters
  • Carpets and Rugs
  • Stair Handrails
  • Elevator Cars
  • Playground Equipment
  • Fitness Equipment

Specialized Products

The CDC recommends usage of a labeled hospital-grade disinfectant with claims against similar pathogens to the coronavirus. Multiple products in the SERVPRO product line carry the EPA-approved emerging pathogens claims. While there is currently no product tested against this particular strain of the coronavirus, we are following all guidelines as provided by the CDC and local authorities.

Call Today for a Proactive Cleaning

If your home or business needs deep cleaning services, call the experts today – SERVPRO of West Orange, 407-352-1569

Sources:

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/hcp/guidance-prevent-spread.html?CDC_AA_refVal=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cdc.gov%2Fcoronavirus%2F2019-ncov%2Fguidance-prevent-spread.html

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/specific-groups/guidance-business-response.html

When Flooding Happens in Orlando, Call SERVPRO to Cleanup

12/26/2019 (Permalink)

Large tree falls on roof of white one-story home Large trees often cause storm damage to homes in Central Florida.

SERVPRO Helps Orlando Home with Damage from Flooding

Lightning and intense storms that damage trees are often the root cause behind flooding that damages Central Florida homes. Typical situations are tree limbs damaging windows or roofs and allowing rainwater in or downed trees causing water to pool around the foundation, which then enters the home. 

When flooding happens in an Orlando property, it is vital for the water cleanup efforts to begin quickly. One of the main issues is the structural damage from water wicking into sheetrock, running behind baseboards, the ruination of carpet and floor tiles. 

First Actions After Flood Damage Hits

Homeowners can minimize loss by removing items from rooms that are taking on floodwater. Pick up things off the floor, move furnishings to other places in the residence, but only if it is safe to do so. Mops and rags are useful for blotting up water before SERVPRO arrives for water extraction.  

Inspection for Cleaning

The techs inspect each item removed from the loss area to determine the prospects for cleaning. Anything without restoration potential is photographed and logged for the homeowner to use when they file with their insurance to help expedite the claim. 

Demo and Tear-Out as Part of Mitigation

Sometimes damage from flooding looks worse as it is getting better. Flooring and sheetrock need removal after prolonged exposure to water. The technicians perform this type of controlled demolition as cleanly as possible to make repairs easier to do after the mitigation efforts complete. 

Mold Prevention Treatments

When flood damage occurs, mold has the potential to set up in the home rapidly. SERVPRO techs hold mold remediation certificate #MRSR868, and they know the signs of a mold infestation. When cleaning, they wipe down all surfaces with disinfecting cleaning agents. Before rebuilding, studs are treated with an antimicrobial sealant that goes on like paint. This process creates a barrier that repels mold growth on the structure wherever the paint is applied. 

When flooding happens, call SERVPRO of West Orange at (407) 352-1569. Their trained technicians are available 24/7 to clean up water damage from flooding and restore your home to its preloss conditions, "Like it never even happened."

For more about Orlando, click here.

Our Water Damage Professionals Point Out Problems With Ice Makers In Orlando

12/26/2019 (Permalink)

commercial property damaged by water Whenever your refrigerator's ice maker breaks and leaks, it is wise to call SERVPRO of West Orange at (407) 352-1569 24/7

Commercial Water Damage Professionals In Orlando Point Out Problems With Ice Makers

Your office building, just like your home in Orlando, has several water pipes running in and out of it. If any of these pipes happen to burst overnight while nobody is inside the office, excessive commercial water damage can quickly occur. Even a small quarter-inch crack in a live water pipe can cause hundreds of gallons of liquid H2O to pour into your office building. Once the moisture spreads, it is wise to call SERVPRO.

Our team can quickly respond to your place of business and begin restoring your office to its preloss state and make it seem, “Like it never even happened.” Most commercial water damage projects in Orlando require a professional restoration company such as SERVPRO to find all of the issues and make sure they all get properly mitigated. When we are working at your business, we know that if we work efficiently that we can save you and your insurance company money in the long run. We conduct all of our operations, keeping your bottom line in mind, and we can conduct our restoration procedures in ways that can help you keep your business functioning.

Ice makers inside refrigerators can be a handy tool, but if they malfunction, moisture can leak into your building's structure. If you have an ice maker inside the refrigerator in your office's break room, it is possible that it could break and leak water. When this occurs, the water can soak into your structural components, such as your subfloor and wall coverings.

If there is carpet inside your break room, it is possible that the moisture can delaminate and ruin the flooring material, which can force us to have to remove and replace it. If your break room contains linoleum or other hard surface materials, then it is possible that we can squeegee and mop up all of the moisture. If water has soaked into your wall's studs or your subflooring materials, then we can set up dehumidifiers and air movers to dry out your wet structural components.

Any time a disaster occurs at your business' office, we know that prompt mitigation is vital so that you can keep up your normal day-to-day operations. Whenever your refrigerator's ice maker breaks and leaks, it is wise to call SERVPRO of West Orange at (407) 352-1569 24/7.

For more about Orlando click here.

Water Damage Restoration In Orlando Requires Chemicals That Contain Certain Active Ingredients

12/17/2019 (Permalink)

An open ceiling with exposed piping and water damage. SERVPRO knows what your Orlando home will need immediately after a water damage, to keep from having further damage.

Orlando when you have water damage, it will need professional restoration.

If your condo in Orlando ever suffers from any type of moisture-related problem, many procedures must be taken to prevent secondary issues. When moisture comes into direct contact with your contents and building materials, primary water damage can result. However, other things can go wrong inside your residence even in parts of your structure that did not directly touch any liquid. These issues are considered secondary, but they can prove to be devastating sometimes.

Secondary problems include problems related to high humidity levels and mold growth. Whenever our SERVPRO team mitigates water damage in Orlando, we take measures to prevent secondary issues from occurring. These types of problems can be eliminated when your primary issues get addressed promptly. The number one goal is to remove moisture from your building materials and contents as quickly as possible before fungi can grow, or your indoor humidity levels can rise to a dangerous point.

In addition to extraction and applied structural drying or ASD methods our SERVPRO technicians can apply, we can also utilize several industrial chemicals to help prevent mold growth and other types of contamination. All of the products we use utilize the following four main active ingredients to prevent fungal formations or to disinfect.

  1. Phenolics

Phenolics are alcohol-based agents that are usually diluted by water and can be used as disinfectants and antimicrobials.

  1. Quaternary Compounds

Quaternary-based chemicals can be effectively used to clean and sanitize by rupturing the cell walls of microorganisms and destroying them.

  1. Glutaraldehydes

These agents are often used during leather tanning and food processing procedures. Chemical mixtures that have a concentration of 2% or more of glutaraldehydes can work to kill spores, viruses, and bacteria if enough application time is given.

  1. Chlorine

Bleach is the most common product used that contains chlorine. Any solution containing chlorine can be useful as a germicide, but the chemical can cause staining and discoloration on certain materials.

Most restoration projects require a mix of professional methods and techniques, as well as the use of different types of chemical products. For professional assistance after any type of water leak occurs inside your home, call SERVPRO of West Orange at (407) 352-1569 any time of the day. We can restore your home to its preloss state, "Like it never even happened."

To learn more about Orlando, click here.

Why it is Essential to Quickly Dry Water Damaged Carpeting in Orlando

12/16/2019 (Permalink)

Hotel clerk helping woman check into hotel Water loss events can temporarily close your hotel. Call SERVPRO for fast drying and remediation.

Drying Damp Carpeting in Your Orlando Hotel 

No matter what emergencies affect your Orlando hotel, your reputation can get ruined if the situation gets out of control. Water loss incidents can quickly reach a catastrophic point that limits your function and available offerings for guests. With a fast response to these emergencies, our SERVPRO team can help to limit the spread and severity of water disasters minimally to reduce our impact on your guests and building. 

Because the Greater Orlando area is a hub for all of the entertainment venues in the region, including Walt Disney World, SeaWorld, and Universal Studios, water damage in Orlando hotels can compromise the consistent higher capacity you can expect year-round. Addressing these concerns must happen immediately. Most water losses affect the flooring most heavily, and therefore, carpeted areas of your structure must get extracted and dried. 

Prolonged moisture and saturation of carpeted areas can lead to multiple concerns, including the development of microbial threats or the degradation of the carpet through delamination. This term refers to a separation of the primary and secondary backing materials on a carpet. Minor separations can get repaired if the carpet gets dried quickly enough, but knowing about compromises to the carpet right away can save time and unnecessary restoration efforts. 

Because saturation is a potential concern, the first steps for our SERVPRO team involve the use of carpet wands and weighted extraction tools to force moisture to the surface of the carpet for removal. Effective removal of the excess water is only part of the equation, however. We must also utilize specific strategies to dry up the carpet and padding completely, including floating the carpet by running variable speed air movers between the carpet and the layer of padding. 

By drying out damaged areas of your hotel after water losses, you can decrease the severity of these conditions and get your business back to normal as quickly as possible. No matter how severe these emergencies might be, it is our business to get you back in business. Give our SERVPRO of West Orange team a call today at (407) 352-1569. 

More about Orlando.

SERVPRO Professionals Give Tips for Drying Water Damaged Hardwood Floors in Orlando

12/5/2019 (Permalink)

Water Damaged Hardwood Floors Water damaged hardwood flooring calls for special drying techniques. We have the equipment and experience to restore your floors.

Methods for Restoring Damp Hardwood in Orlando Homes 

As a standard of an installed flooring type as hardwood has been over the decades, it is as prevalent in modern construction as it was at Orlando's founding in 1885. Restoring these flooring types requires a continual commitment to the latest technologies and advancements in the recovery industry. Our SERVPRO team has multiple strategies for handling moisture-damaged hardwood flooring without defaulting to reinstalling new material.  

While admittedly, controlled demolition is an option, there are other ways that we can attempt to manage water damage in Orlando's homes before choosing that approach. Wood flooring can get composed of dozens of different species of trees with varying dimensions, porosities, and properties. The best approach for one of these materials might be impossible for another, so these conditions and their respective restoration strategies get determined during the scoping phase led by our project management and crew chief. There are options regarding the controlled drying needs of installed hardwood flooring ahead of demolition and re-installation.  

Sopping and Surface Drying 

Depending on the speed with which our SERVPRO professionals arrive and the density of the affected surface, water penetration could be slow. Under the right conditions, our team might only need to clear out surface water and dry up the noticeable damage to return your home to its original condition.  

Drying Mats  

These specialty drying tools can prove vital in situations where water has begun to soak into the planks and might have reached the subflooring and supports beneath the plank surface. These mats get positioned perpendicular to the installation of the plank seams to maximize their effects on the flooring.  

Monitored Tenting 

Using lay-flat poly sheeting, our technicians can seal around a damaged flooring area so that focused drying efforts, including the use of the drying mats, can have a more deliberate and unhindered removal of moisture. Because of the faster draw of moisture from the plank, we continually monitor humidity and moisture content to ensure that wood flooring does not become overly dry and damaged.  

Hardwood can be a problematic flooring type to care for after an emergency, but our SERVPRO of West Orange team is here to help 24/7 by calling (407) 352-1569. 

More about Orlando.

Why SERVPRO is the First Choice for Environmentally Friendly Water Damage Restoration in Orlando

11/15/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO Truck and Car Did you know that SERVVPRO uses environmentally friendly products for home restoration? We use products that are safe and effective.

Why SERVPRO Is The Best Answer For Environmentally-Conscious Water Damage Remediation In Orlando 

When you own a home, it is best to understand how to deal with water damage should a situation arise. Whether you have a leaking pipe in the bathroom or a flooded kitchen due to an appliance malfunction, getting to the source of the problem is crucial. The professionals can pinpoint the heart of the issue and get remediation underway to help reduce the amount of damage that takes hold. 

Something that sets our water damage professionals in Orlando apart from the rest is that we have perfected the removal and remediation process. We use powerful tools for extraction, cleaning, deodorizing, and disinfecting to get your home back to normal fast. 

The SERVPRO Advantage 

Water cleanup involves a variety of approaches to get the job done. We work to remove water, clean up the residue, remove any debris, and use specialized technology. Protecting our client’s environment is our main focus, which has helped us to develop industrial-grade solvents and cleaning agents for speedy results. Such products like Benefect cleansers allow us to clean out water-damaged homes in a variety of ways. 

-   Environmentally Friendly – The last thing we want to bring into your home are harsh chemical agents that are bad for you and the environment. We use botanically-based products with ingredients like citric acid and thymol that naturally degrade.-   Less Odor – Many commercial cleaning products have strong, hazardous odors. SERVPRO makes use of botanicals whenever possible to get the desired level of clean in the most pleasant manner possible.

-   Cleaning Power – Contrary to popular belief, you do not have to use harsh chemicals to get high-quality results. Botanicals, when formulated correctly, can give high-level cleaning results throughout your water damaged home. 

Are you concerned about dealing with water damage in the most environmentally way possible? Call our professional team at SERVPRO of West Orange today at (407) 352-1569, and we can discuss your options. 

More about Orlando.

Little Known Ways to Remediate Water Damage in Your Orlando Home

10/31/2019 (Permalink)

white pipe burst leaking water Use SERVPRO to mitigate water damage and your home will thank you.

Get Fast Water Extraction for Your Orlando Home

Florida residents may know always to be prepared for flooding from storm systems and hurricanes. Still, small faucet leaks and damaged pipes can pose significant risks to your home, no matter how prepared you may be. Even a small pipe leak can introduce dozens of gallons of water into your home every day. If left unchecked, this can create conditions where mold and other microbes can thrive and compromise your structure.

If you need a professional team that can offer you rapid water extraction in Orlando, SERVPRO is a phone call away from coming to your home within hours. Technicians can get to work removing moisture from surfaces as well as from structural materials in your home. Advanced technologies, such as infrared cameras and thermohygrometers, can be used to ensure that your home gets the care it needs in tandem with EPA-registered disinfectants.


Indications of Water Damage Behind Walls

There are several signs to look for that can indicate a pipe leak behind a wall. If you suspect that you may have water damage behind a structure in your home, keep an eye out for these signs:

  • A distinctly wet, musty odor
  • Visible mold growth or discernible odors on walls and baseboards
  • Visible staining on walls and ceilings that is often brown
  • Bubbling or peeling paint and wallpaper 
  • Walls, floors, and ceilings can warp, buckle, and eventually give way under pressure

How SERVPRO Can Restore Your Home

When you call your local SERVPRO team, they can take great care to restore your items after water damage takes place. Portable extraction wands can be used to get into structures and remove water after baseboards have been moved. Holes may be drilled into sagging ceilings to allow for easier removal of moisture and facilitate drying. 

If you have hardwood floors in your home, boards can be removed and replaced after cleaning for small leaks. In more saturated areas, large mats can be placed over floors to contain moisture and make it easier to extract moisture. Floors can then be dried with carefully-placed centrifugal air movers and low-grain refrigerant (LGR) dehumidifiers. This local team also has a mold remediation license (#MRSR868) to take care of mold growth after water damage has affected your home. 

SERVPRO of West Orange can ensure that your residence looks, "Like it never even happened." When disaster strikes in your home, call (407) 352-1569, and you can have a team at your residence within hours.

Click here to learn more about the city of Orlando.

How Water Damages Your Possessions in Orlando

10/17/2019 (Permalink)

Water pooling on living room floor.  Also shows sofa and TV Yikes! Time to call SERVPRO. Just a small amount of water can cause a lot of damage.

The Effect of Water Damage on your Possessions and Orlando's Restoration Solutions 

Attics and storage spaces commonly fall victim due to poor insulation and greater exposure to outdoor elements. Unfortunately, these instances can go unnoticed for an extended period, which means, after discovery, the damage tends to be widespread. We operate a restoration company focusing on amending the source of the issue and restoring any personal artifacts or possessions that may have become damaged. 

As a nationally accredited company, our Water Damage repair team in Orlando has both experience and expertise in restoring property owner's possessions. To thoroughly address the source of the issue, SERVPRO technicians can remove personal effects to a designated clean room either on or off-site. This procedure allows us to focus first on restoring structure and stopping the water leak at the source. 

Sometimes the cause of a water incident can go beyond the scope of a restorer and requires third-party repair. We have trusted local contractors who can be brought in to perform necessary repairs. In the meantime, SERVPRO technicians can plug the gap either by shutting off the supply or installing temporary barriers. A poor roofing structure, for example, can take on more moisture every time it rains. We can mitigate against that using emergency tarps while you wait for a contractor to complete repairs. 

Possessions can sustain lots of damage from prolonged exposure to moisture. Among the chief concerns for a SERVPRO restorer are items made from porous materials like clothing or fabrics. These porous materials absorb water, and with it, any microbial presence within the water. Over time, that can cause odors, discoloration, or staining to fabrics. Using Esporta mechanical washing machines, our restorers may be able to restore these possessions to their previous condition adequately. Denser items like precious metals can benefit from immersion solvent cleaning. 

If you discover water damage in an unfrequented area of the home, do not throw items out without the assessment of a professional restorer. Contact SERVPRO of West Orange at (407) 352-1569 for restoration. 

More about Orlando.

How SERVPRO Supports Local Orlando Properties with Restoration Services

10/17/2019 (Permalink)

City with water and palm trees and buildings. We have the knowledge, certificates, equipment, and so much more to help your Orlando community.

Let SERVPRO show you ‘’Why’’ we are the ones for your Orlando property damages.

When the day comes that you need restoration services in your Orlando residence, it can feel overwhelming to find a local service that has the certifications and equipment to clean and restore your property — many types of damage overlap with each other. For example, water damage often accompanies fire damage, and mold growth has the potential to be a consequence if not adequately mitigated. 

Cleanup of Water Damage

When an Orlando home receives water damage, fast action is the key to limiting loss to both property and contents. The longer building materials have exposure to moisture, the less of a chance for restoration.  SERVPRO technicians have a diverse array of equipment for water extraction from all parts of the residence and its contents. Consumer-grade fans only can dry moisture from surfaces. The centrifugal air movers sometimes referred to as "snail shells," and they emit a powerful yet focused airflow that can remove embedded moisture. , sometimes referred to as "snail shells" or turbo dryers, produce powerful, concentrated air movement. 

To ensure complete water removal, the technicians use different kinds of moisture detection equipment that allows them to ascertain the migration path of the water quickly and if areas such as floor joists between floors or wall cavities require water cleanup. 

Fire Damage Cleanup and Restoration

When fire damage happens to an Orlando property, there are numerous challenges left behind for SERVPRO technicians. Fire debris removal is crucial for prepping a fire loss area for reconstruction. Once an item or building materials have charing damage, they contribute only odor and soot particles to the room and require removal. 

While porous objects do not fare well in fire and tend to absorb smoke and soot, rendering them as a fire loss rather than restorable; solid objects often have restoration potential through various cleaning methods that depend on the composition of the item. During a fire, hot air expands and drives smoke and soot into objects, including surfaces such as the paint on walls. SERVPRO technicians work cleaning away smoke residues with specialized cleaners. In some cases, additional treatments such as applying sealers over paint with embedded soot and smoke residue.  

Before occupying the property or beginning reconstruction efforts, the home should be scent-free from residual smoke odors. SERVPRO technicians have specialized training in the removal of different levels of fire odors. There are odor-covering treatments such as gel-pellets that are effective for mild smoke odors or equipment for neutralizing airborne odors when there is a need for stronger methods. It is common for technicians to inspect and clean the HVAC ventilation in the home to ensure there are residual odors left behind.

Storm Damage Happens in Many Forms

Orlando homes get blasted by high winds, dinged by hail, flooded with storm surges and flash floods and then there are hurricanes and tornadoes. Not to mention the State of Florida is the lightning capital of the world. 

SERVPRO technicians practice safety first on all jobs, and never more so than when it comes to cleaning up groundwater in a residence. Testing of the water is vital to know the types of contaminants they are dealing with as well as if sewage is also present. When eliminating groundwater, technicians always follow state or local regulations for the disposal of biohazardous waste.

It is common for technicians to contain the water loss area and also set up staging areas for the cleaning of both technicians and equipment as they are leaving the work-site to avoid cross-contamination during the flood damage cleanup,

They try to disrupt the home as little as possible during mitigation of storm damage; in some severe cases, technicians pack out the contents of the household in the interest of preserving items that have the potential to degrade in the presence of raised humidity. After the completion of water loss mitigation efforts, the technicians move the things back in and put them in their original places. 

Mold is a Constant Threat

Orlando has both warmth and humidity, making mold damage a constant threat to Orlando homes. Especially after any type of water damage. Since mold spores occur naturally and simply need an opportunity to germinate, technicians pay special attention to conditions inside the house when performing restoration services. 

When a homeowner suspects a mold infestation or sees signs of colonies, remediation events must begin quickly. SERVPRO holds a Mold Remediation License #MRSR868 and has the tools and equipment to eradicate mold colonies successfully. After mold damage cleanup. the application of antimicrobial sealers assures there will be no return to the home. 

Once the mold is not an issue within the structure of the home, technicians clean the HVAC ductwork to keep airborne mold spores from spreading to other areas of the house and re-establishing colonies in other areas. 

Why SERVPRO?

There are numerous reasons to outsource the need for restoration services to a professional firm. Among them is the difference in the equipment used. Consumer-grade wet/dry vacuums do not possess the power to clean up water damage in a home thoroughly. Because thorough water removal is vital, they choose equipment based on the surfaces or furnishings that need mitigation. Commonly used items would be portable extraction units, light wands for carpet, and deep removal tools. 

Dealing with insurance claims after any type of home disaster is an overwhelming feeling. To take some of the stress off property owners, SERVPRO offers its unique Contents Claim Inventory System. Each item in the home has a photographic record created along with written details of its condition and whether it had restoration actions performed or was a loss. This assists with the expediting of the filing of insurance claims as the CCIS service establishes a chain of custody for each item removed.

SERVPRO of West Orange at (407) 352-1569 is ready to assist property owners 24/7 with any needed restoration services caused by water, fire, mold or storm damage. The service is locally based, and we arrive on-site within an hour of your call because We're Faster to Any Size Disaster.

To find out more about Orlando, click here.

Four Reasons to Trust SERVPRO to Restore Water Damaged Carpets in Orlando

9/26/2019 (Permalink)

Two girls laying an carpeted floor After water damage, you want your carpets as good as new. SERVPRO has the know-how and equipment to restore the carpets.

Why Replace Carpet with Water Damage in Orlando Homes When You Can Restore it? 

It may look hopeless to see rooms in your home with water damage, especially if the carpet has been affected. The good news is that if cleanup efforts begin quickly enough, there is a good chance the carpet and padding is not a water loss.  

Working on Orlando water damage from a busted pipe in a wall comes with several challenges for SERVPRO technicians. First and foremost, the water requires extraction before it migrates any more than it already has. Using advanced technology to scope the premises, the technicians ascertain all areas where water removal needs to occur. 

Why SERVPRO? 

The technicians undergo rigorous training that covers all aspects of water restoration sciences. They also continue their education and stay up-to-date on the latest advances. This training enables them to save property owners the cost of replacement for damaged items through their specialized equipment and proprietary cleaning methods. 

Equipment for Water Extraction on Carpet

Under the carpet, the pad holds copious amounts of water, and if it is not adequately dried, it sets the home up for strong odors and mold growth. The use of weighted extractor heads pushes the water out of both carpet and the pad. Using the extractor allows for thorough drying, especially when technicians use targeted drying methods such as floating the carpet. 

Carpet Cleaning Methods for the Best Outcome

SERVPRO technicians have the training and hold certifications as Carpet Cleaning Technicians. To ensure they use the correct solutions and methods on the carpet, they test the fibers for colorfastness, bleeding, and shrinkage before performing any action. 

Special Attention to the Possibility of Mold

In cases where a leak has gone undetected for some time within a wall cavity, the potential for mold colonies within the structure is possible. SERVPRO technicians have a mold remediation license #MRSR868 and know the early warning signs as well as how to inhibit mold growth. 

SERVPRO of West Orange at (407) 352-1569 has technicians available 24/7 to assist property owners with any size water damage problem in their homes. We arrive quickly after your call and make the loss, "Like it never even happened."

More about Orlando.

Your Best Guide to Water Damage Remediation Success in Orlando

9/22/2019 (Permalink)

Road Sign for Hurricane Hurricanes can bring flooding and water damage. Contact SERVPRO for effective remediation services after a storm.

Emergency Construction and Debris Removal in Orlando Homes

The best response that you can hope for after hurricane damage to Orlando properties is a team capable of helping you overcome water loss effects and structural concerns. Our SERVPRO crew has multiple divisions of professionals accredited in every facet of the restoration industry through the standard-setting Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC.) In addition to our knowledge and experience in property recovery after severe weather events, we also have a licensed team of contractors to address damages and structural vulnerabilities.

Emergency construction is one of the most pressing needs that has the potential to reduce the severity of water and hurricane effects in Orlando properties. General contractors on our team help to provide our customers with a one-stop-shop solution that can prevent further water penetration by beginning tasks like board-ups, roof tarping, and tree removals as soon as our professionals arrive.

This contracting division of our team works with our production management and crew chiefs to design the restoration and recovery plan specific to your property. As initial reconstruction efforts often coincide with mitigation steps, the divisions of our team can work side by side to begin drying out your home, removing debris from affected areas, and beginning controlled demolition techniques.

Debris removal is another pressing threat after a flood loss incident, as standing water can bring in mud and other hazardous substances or objects into the house. We can get a better understanding of the labor that must occur to clean your property once our SERVPRO team has effectively removed standing water. Mud, degraded materials, and other rubbish can get shoveled out and properly disposed of so that your home is ready for the restorative acts that make losses “Like it never even happened.”

Orlando bands together after disasters like hurricanes reach the city, and our SERVPRO of West Orange team has helped to rebuild your life and your property after widespread destruction occurs. You can count on our professionals to show that We’re Faster To Any Size Disaster because we know that with storm damages, every second counts. Give us a call today at (407) 352-1569.

Click here for more information about the city of Orlando.

Professional Flood Restoration for Hurricane-Damaged Orlando Homes

9/16/2019 (Permalink)

eye of hurricane in water Let us handle your restoration frustrations from hurricane flood damage in Orlando.

SERVPRO is prepared to take the challenge from your Orlando flood damage. 

Hurricanes present a formidable force to Orlando homes and businesses, leaving many residents displaced and contending with substantial structural concerns, flooding, and other damaging effects. As overwhelming as this might seem, it is even more stressful without a concise plan of attack to get the property back to its original condition. As experienced as some property owners might be with recovery and cleaning, restoring flood and structural damages requires the expertise and skill of our qualified professionals.

Flood damages in Orlando homes can spread quickly across the main floor of the structure, encompassing multiple rooms and areas simultaneously. Homeowners often have smaller-scale extraction tools like shop-vacs that can remove tanks’ worth of standing water at a time. With the length of time that it could take to remove all of the flooding in your house, many materials could become saturated, and this dampness could spread to areas like wall cavities. These points are susceptible to secondary effects like mold growth if the material does not get sufficiently dried before spores seat, spread, and thrive in as little as 48 hours.

Many have sought out our SERVPRO professionals for flooding and water loss events throughout the years because of our fast response and depth in our roster of technicians to ensure that no customer waits for the mitigation and restoration that their home requires. We have powerful tools to help in this recovery as well, including truck-mount extractor machines and portable sump pumps for more confined areas where long leads of discharge hose cannot access.

Our goal after a storm loss in your home, especially one that becomes structurally compromising like a hurricane, is to allow our licensed SERVPRO contractors (#MRSR868) to begin temporary solutions like board up and drywall removal to reduce continued damage and deterioration of exposed elements. With drywall removed, our special drying equipment can better interact with wall cavities to ensure sufficient drying and moisture removal to protect installed materials as much as possible.

Hurricanes and other natural disasters pose a substantial risk to hundreds of properties within the direct path of the storm. Amid a crisis, you can count on the fast response and the seasoned experience of our certified technicians here at SERVPRO of West Orange. We are here to help however you need us by calling (407) 352-1569.

To find out more about Orlando, click here.

Don’t Wait Call SERVPRO Right Away After Flood Waters in Orlando

8/28/2019 (Permalink)

Flooded neighborhood. If your Orlando home is overcome by storm and flood damage don't stress. Call the professionals at SERVPRO today for help.

What to Do After a Flood Damages Your Orlando Residence

Floods in Orlando can come from snow, heavy rain, storm surges or coastal storms, among other reasons. They can develop quickly or slowly, disrupt transportation, cause power outages, and ruin homes in various ways. Floodwater weakens drywall, and the paper facing can provide food for mold. If drywall is crumbly, soft, or moldy, it is necessary to replace it.

Water also ruins insulated appliances like ovens and refrigerators, and it may be impossible to salvage them if water has penetrated their insulation. When your Orlando home has flood damage, there are some best practices you can use within the first 24 hours to ensure the safety of your property and family. These practices can also provide you with the best outcome with your insurance firm. They include:

Prevent additional risks

Check your property for any visible structural destruction like cracks, holes, warping and cracked or loosened foundation elements before entering it. If you suspect damage to gas, water, sewer, and electric lines, call utility companies to perform the requisite inspections.

Secure your home 

If some windows are broken, place boards over them. If the roof is ruined, secure a tarp to protect it. Take photos to prove to your insurer that you have taken precautions to protect your property against further destruction.

Protect your health 

It is advisable to wear waders, waterproof boots, and rubber gloves to avoid contaminants as you remove water-damaged possessions from your house. Throw out any foodstuffs that could have come into contact with the water. The Federal Emergency Management Agency recommends boiling water until the authorities confirm that the water supply is safe.

Contact your insurance firm.

Inform your insurance representative about the state of your house and the repairs you intend to perform. Follow the directions of the insurance company on whether you should wait for an adjuster to inspect your house before making repairs. Document the conversations at each stage.

Remove the water

You can use a shop vac to remove the water from your home. Also, open windows and doors to allow fresh air to circulate. Our SERVPRO Water Damage Restoration Technicians (WRT) can assist you in removing the water using portable pumps or wet/dry vacuums.



Dry your property

To dry your home effectively, you must eliminate moisture from the structure and contents as well as the air. Our technicians use air movers, industrial-grade dehumidifiers, and specialized drying equipment such as inject dry systems to remove moisture from a building.

Sanitize your home

 We categorize floodwater as black water, which is threatening to human health. Contaminants in floodwater include hazardous chemicals and microorganisms like viruses, bacteria, and fungi. Our SERVPRO Applied Microbial Remediation Technicians (AMRTs) can use flood disinfectant solutions to disinfect your home to prevent health issues.

When you need flood damage cleanup services in Disney World, Lake Buena Vista or Winter Garden, contact the restoration team at SERVPRO of West Orange for quick restoration. Our 24-hour emergency helpline is (407) 352-1569.

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Orlando Homes, Smoky Odors, and SERVPRO Help

8/20/2019 (Permalink)

Why Do Orlando Home Owners Rely on SERVPRO for Fire Damage Restoration and Odor Removal? Ask Your Neighbors!!

Fires Big and Small Are Our Specialty in Orlando

Even the smallest things can cause anxiety.  Maybe a small grease fire in your kitchen left some damage that, while not catastrophic, has you wondering how to get rid of the smell and the stain left on your ceiling.  You think fire damage requires a specialized team, but are unsure whether yours is big enough for a team of experts to review.  Do not let your anxiety get the best of you and place a call to a reputable resource.

If this fire damage story in Orlando describes your situation, SERVPRO is your best option to address the damage left behind in your kitchen.  We recognize that emergencies happen around the clock, so our services are also available 24/7.  Swift action is perhaps the most crucial element in minimizing your losses and avoiding the spread of unwanted smells and airborne particles.  Our team brings into your home the equipment and expertise to assess the extent of the damage and steps to remediation.

Understanding the chemical composition of your fire is a determinant of subsequent cleaning solutions.  Our SERVPRO staff trains to identify these differences based on the path and residue of the smoke, which in turn tailors cleaning solutions to your needs.  By cleaning each surface with appropriate substances, you prevent causing even more damage by using abrasive products on unsuitable surfaces.  You can rely on us to make informed decisions of what product is best in each case.

One of the most unpleasant effects of fires big and small is the odor they leave behind.  Our SERVPRO crew can help you remove them from your home by using air scrubbers, air filtration devices, and even thermal foggers.  Our industry-grade products are designed to be more effective than any store-bought deodorizing solution you may find at your local store. Knowing which option to use in each of our jobs is a skill acquired through our extensive training and on the field experience.

Do not let a small fire get the best of you.  We are here to help in fires big and small.  Just reach out to SERVPRO of West Orange at (407) 352-1569 and let us leave your home "Like it never even happened."

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How a SERVPRO Emergency Ready Plan (ERP) Helps You Prepare for Storms and Flooding

8/7/2019 (Permalink)

It's hurricane season. Are you ready for potential flooding?

Help Us Help You When Flood Damage Descends on Orlando 

Our Orlando customers can make a substantial positive impact on the harm flooding can inflict on their home and its contents. Making some changes in how you store items or install systems or appliances can avoid a significant catastrophe if extreme seasonal weather strikes. If you travel or reside in another location for part of the year, establishing a relationship with our team can give you peace of mind even if you are elsewhere when flooding threatens. 

Hurricane season stretches over half the year, and even less intense weather systems can expose your Orlando home to flood damage. Having a personal safety plan for yourself and every member of your family is wise. Extending this concept to preparing for potential damage to your home makes sense. 

Be prepared with the SERVPRO ERP Plan 

SERVPRO offers both business and residential customers the opportunity to collaborate with us to design an individualized Emergency Ready Plan and Profile (ERP). We send an experienced project manager or SMR sales and marketing rep to your home.  While there, we check the layout and evaluate the strengths and vulnerabilities of your storage, utility, and other systems, and more. 

How to “Weather the Storm”

Expect recommendations to make your home and contents less likely to sustain significant flood damage. Moving items to higher ground and clearing the way to shut off and control panels make it easier for us to respond safely to any emergency. As we work with you developing the ERP, we come to a consensus on the best ways to approach a flood in your home. We need to understand your priorities.  We show you how we intend to mitigate and remediate a possible flooding event. 

Contact information is crucial

SERVPRO also suggests you nominate a local contact to act on your behalf if you are unavailable during a flooding event. Even if friends or family are vacationing in your home, it is a good idea to have a preselected point person both you and our team relies upon if a disaster occurs. 

SERVPRO of West Orange encourages proactivity on the part of our globe-trotting customers. To ready yourself and your property for flood damage, call (407) 352-1569 to schedule an ERP assessment.

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Timing Is Vital After A Water Damage Incident In Your Orlando Home

7/30/2019 (Permalink)

Call SERVPRO of West Orange to help. You can reach us any time at (407) 352-1569.

Time Determines What You Can Salvage After Water Damage In Your Orlando Home

A faster response is necessary whenever there is a water loss incident in your property because time is the main factor that determines what you can save. Extracting any water pooling around and drying any excess moisture can help save items. Alternatively, you can move the items from affected areas to cut down the time they remain submerged. As experts in water damage restoration, we can help you take immediate steps that help you salvage several items.

In many cases, carpets endure the most of water damage in your Orlando home because they lie on the floor where water pools. Luckily, carpets are a bit resilient, and in case the incident does not involve black water, salvaging the carpet easy if submerged for less than a day. Delaminating or latex deterioration occur if exposure extends over a day. Our SERVPRO technicians extract all water sitting on the carpet then remove the carpet for drying. We also dry the floor materials to ensure problems such as mold development do not occur after re-installing the carpet.

Drywall is another commonly affected material.  If the water originates from a higher level, it drips down the walls where drywall absorbs it.  Any water that pools on the floor also affects drywall.  Absorption of water causes the drywall to discolor, and if dried, it does not return to its original shape.  Any pressure on such compromised drywall leads to crumbling to a chalky residue. Our SERVPRO technicians take different approaches to help you save some of the affected drywall. By making flood cuts, we only remove the compromised sections and leave the rest. We can also check the level of wetness in the material to determine whether to save it. We have a wide range of moisture detection equipment, including:

    •    Moisture meters
    •    Moisture Sensors
    •    Thermal Cameras
    •    Thermohygrometers

Upholstery items are also readily affected by water loss incidents. Because of the different materials used in such items including wood and cloth, the damage is not uniform and therefore requires expertise to salvage. Using a wand, Our SERVPRO technicians can extract excess water from the clothing materials. We then run air movers and dehumidifiers to help dry the item.

It is possible to salvage many items after water loss incidents. Call SERVPRO of West Orange to help. You can reach us any time at (407) 352-1569.

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Orlando Professionals Explain Drying Goals and how They Affect Your Flood Damaged Homes

7/18/2019 (Permalink)

It's hurricane season. Are you prepared for flood damage?

Creating a Dry Goal to Ensure your Orlando Home returns to Pre-loss Condition after Flood Damage

When floodwater enters your home, it can be an extremely frustrating experience. Depending on the scale and size of your property, complete service from start to finish can take anywhere between twelve hours and a few weeks. During this time, you need a professional company you can rely on to carry out restoration services correctly. Our Water Restoration Technicians (WRT) are qualified by the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certifications (IICRC) body who make daily assessments of your property to ensure progress and outcomes.

Creating a "drying goal" is essential to achieving the full restoration of flood damage in your Orlando home. A drying goal brings materials in the contents and structure of your property to their natural dryness before the flood; otherwise known as returning materials to their preloss condition. SERVPRO calculate the appropriate by taking readings from contents and structure from unaffected areas of the home. Calibrating readings from the affected area with the unaffected area achieves our "dry goal."

The equipment SERVPRO use to establish our target is comprehensive. Moisture sensors and meters are used to probe contents or structure and assess how saturated materials are with water. Monitoring of relative humidity is another crucial factor in returning your home to a preloss condition, with readings taken using a thermal hygrometer. The process of drying involves adjusting evaporation, temperature, and humidity with equipment to return your home to its condition before the flood.

We pump or vacuum out large quantities of flood water using extraction units and submersible gas pumps. It is 1,200 times faster to transport water out of a property than it is to dehumidify. However, pumps are ineffective below two inches of standing water. Extraction units can also be ineffective at removing moisture that has absorbed into materials. To combat these SERVPRO technicians use drier air to increase evaporation. Desiccant dehumidifiers can reduce humidity levels to below 40 grains per pound and draw moisture from solid porous materials like woods, mattresses, and subfloor.

Returning property to a preloss condition requires careful planning and daily updates. Contact SERVPRO of West Orange at (407) 352-1569 for an emergency call out.

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We Put The Flames Of Worry Out In Orlando After A Fire Disaster

7/11/2019 (Permalink)

We have the training, state-of-the-art equipment, and expertise to handle any size disaster so give us a call right away.

Competence Plus Compassion Needed after Orlando Fire Damage

Few life experiences are as devastating as fire for Orlando homeowners. Fear of injury or worse is understandable as you flee your dwelling. When your loved ones get to safety relief turns to worry about how to return your home to the safe and comforting refuge you and your family created over the years. Our Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC)-trained team of managers and technicians stand ready to help with recovery.

Mitigation and remediation of fire damage in your Orlando residence is a job for professionals. We have both the experienced workforce and state-of-the-art equipment to respond efficiently and safely in the aftermath of a household fire. In addition, everyone on our team, from the office staff to the crew members in the field, realize how difficult your journey back to the home you built and treasure can be. Rely on our compassion and support at this challenging time, and trust that our confidence and competence as a premier restoration company can make it “Like it never even happened.”

Expect a thorough assessment followed by a detailed plan and its rapid implementation when SERVPRO arrives. Our service vehicles are stocked with a broad array of equipment, tools, and products to make the mitigation of harmful processes and remediation of damage already done straightforward. Each project is different, but we adapt, always utilizing restoration industry best practices.

Our technicians hold multiple certifications from the IICRC, permitting the work to flow unimpeded from task to task. Firefighting water removal is often the first step, followed by deep cleaning of soot soiled surfaces. We might move items to our production facility to better evaluate and manage their restoration. Clearing the space makes it easier for our site crew to move through your fire-damaged home, cleaning and determining if charred components need remediation, repair, or replacement. SERVPRO invests in advanced technologies like air scrubbers to filter airborne debris and deodorization options that neutralize odor-bearing particles at the molecular level.

Count on SERVPRO of West Orange to support you every step of the way. Call us at (407) 352-1569 immediately after the firefighters leave to start on the road to complete recovery from residential fire damage.

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Orlando Homeowners Take Comfort in the SERVPRO Approach to Fire Loss Recovery

6/26/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO Has No Match for Fire Damage Restoration in Orlando!

Starting the Fire Damage Restoration Process in Your Orlando Area Home

After you make the call for help and a fire & smoke restoration technician (FSRT) arrives at your Orlando area home, we take the time to address specific points. We cover pertinent topics, explain your situation in as much detail as possible, and address any concerns you may have from the start.

During our initial visit, a project manager or a crew chief takes control of the restoration service for the fire damage restoration to your Orlando property. They have you sign an Authorization to Perform Services form (#28000), verify insurance coverage, collect any deductible due, and make contact with your insurance adjuster. We try to expedite the service, as stress-free as possible and remain within schedules and budgets.

SERVPRO technicians address issues concerning the protection and restoration of your structure and any contents within. We also explain our restoration process in detail, so that you understand what is happening in your home, every step of the way. Our goal is to keep you informed, providing you with all of the information you need to make informed decisions about your home's restoration. Our goal is to ensure your 100% satisfaction with the final result.

A member of our SERVPRO team can also explain the difference between pre-existing or preloss conditions, and how they differ from smoke residues caused by the fire. While our services may revitalize various items affected by the fire, we cannot perform miracles. Items are often returned to a quality preloss condition, meaning that any damage that existed before the fire may still remain or hopefully be improved, after performing our service. "Like it never even happened."

You have total control over where our SERVPRO team goes, what we interact with, in your home, and the services performed to restore your property. We note any areas you wish for us to avoid, making a list of any valuables, jewelry, or heirlooms. The lead technicians should also ask that you remove any firearms or ammunition and listed valuables from the work area to ensure their safety.

We maintain a safe, secure working environment, provide safety data sheets upon request, and address any safety concerns you may have. Once everyone is clear about the direction you wish to take, we provide you with an estimated completion date and move forward with your home’s fire damage restoration services, immediately.

Contact SERVPRO of West Orange for cleaning and restoration services throughout Ocoee, Gotha, Bay Hill, and surrounding areas. We have qualified professionals available 24/7, for your convenience and look forward to serving the members of our local community.

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Don't Let Water Damage Check in to Your Orlando Hotel

6/20/2019 (Permalink)

A small water loss incident can have wide ranging ramifications. SERVPRO of West Orange has the know how and equipment to remediate the situation.

Water Damage to Your Orlando Resort Hotel 

Many hotels and resort areas exist throughout the Greater Orlando area. From the world-renowned entertainment venues with their multiple resort properties to off-site locations nearby, your hotel does steady business year-round. Whenever water loss incidents occur in any one of the rooms of this hotel, you must act quickly to resolve the situation before it gets out of hand. Water can quickly spread through shared walls, floors, and ceilings to impact multiple rooms and areas of the hotel within a very short time. 

As potentially problematic as water damage can be to your Orlando hotel, the loss of your reputation can be even more detrimental. Correcting the effects of a water loss incident carry much more weight than improving the look and function of saturated elements and areas of your business.  People expect the management of the property to address any concerns promptly and thoroughly, and failure to comply with this expectation can lead to damaging reviews and ratings on major travel websites. 

Our professionals understand that you are under pressure to get the situation resolved, so we respond quickly and work fast to assess the damage and what the property needs from the moment we arrive. We already show up with our production vehicles stocked with our advanced extraction and drying equipment, allowing us to get to work quickly on both containment and mitigation solutions. 

Preventing the spread of water loss effects to other rooms and areas of the hotel is critical, as this can reduce the number of individuals affected by the damage. By setting up physical barriers with plastic sheeting and establishing a parameter with rapid drying equipment, we can limit our presence in the hotel and the number of inconvenienced guests at the resort. 

We know how powerful ratings and reviews can be, and the importance of truly satisfied customers. Let our SERVPRO of West Orange professionals help you through this traumatic water loss experience and make its effects “Like it never even happened.” Give us a call today at (407) 352-1569. 

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We Have The Drying Equipment Required To Restore Your Orlando Home After A Water Damage Emergency

6/13/2019 (Permalink)

Water is one of the most destructive forces on the planet. If you have a plumbing leak, a roof leak, or any other water damage give us a call.

SERVPRO Tackles Fast Water Removal from Orlando Kitchen

This part of Florida has high humidity throughout the year ranging from 74% to 90% on average. When a home has water damage, because of the elevated humidity levels, the development of mold is a significant concern and cleanup should happen as fast as possible.

SERVPRO handled water damage in an Orlando home's kitchen where a  supply line to a refrigerator had broken. The homeowner had shut off the water and pulled the fridge away from the wall and found the cleanup was bigger than mopping alone could clean up.

When our technicians arrived on-site, we immediately extracted the water damage around the area where the fridge sat. Thermal imaging showed high moisture in the wall behind the appliance, which pointed towards a slow leak for a prolonged period. The sheetrock showed no signs of mold but did show signs of buckling and was cut away several inches above the water line to let air flow dry the wall cavity.


SERVPRO technicians spend extra time on the extraction and scoping the location of water-affected areas before the drying phase. This action allows our drying and dehumidification equipment to reduce moisture quickly enabling the fast attainment of drying goals.

Our drying equipment is not a fan blowing air in a wet room. The way air movers work is rooted in science, and the setup of them is unique to each location we work on. They expel high-velocity airflow and is carefully angled over surfaces. This technique causes embedded water vapor to rise where our dehumidifying equipment captures and removes it. After drying the kitchen and our equipment confirmed the water loss areas attained drying goals, we cleaned the surfaces and used antifungal solutions to inhibit mold growth.

Contact SERVPRO of West Orange at (407) 352-1569 when you need water removal. We can handle cleanup and restoration for a single area in a room or a whole house flood because We're Faster to Any Size Disaster.

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Are Effects of Your Orlando House Fire Lingering?

5/28/2019 (Permalink)

Call SERVPRO of West Orange to completely remove fire damage from your Orlando home.

Eliminating Fire Damage Effects In Orlando

Restoring Orlando homes after a fire is an intensive process. The effects can last for weeks and even months unless the cleanup service begins an immediate, and aggressive response once it is safe to enter the structure.  

For fire damage to Orlando homes, odors are often the most challenging issue when it comes to restoration. SERVPRO restoration teams perform a series of deodorizing actions designed to preserve as much personal property as possible and clean the interior of the home while also disposing of anything too physically damaged for repair.  

Removal is our first action. It immediately results in eliminating the source of many malodors, allowing team members to determine what remaining property is affected so they can better direct time and resources. Depending on the extent of the physical damage, removal may include demolition of interior walls, wall framing, ceilings, and wood floors.  

Cleaning surfaces is the next step for SERVPRO technicians. Odors remaining in the home after removal are from particles left behind by the smoke. Even in a small fire, smoke can travel through an entire home, leaving residue everywhere. Cleaning them usually involves wiping down surfaces with a deodorizing cleaning agent and a sponge. For thick smoke residues left behind by kitchen fires, team members use a scrub brush or other agitation device to break them up for easier cleaning.  

Where cleaning does not eliminate the odors, the next step is to recreate how they affected the property in the first place. If residues were able to penetrate the surfaces of walls, countertops, and other items, team members use a fogging device and a deodorizing agent to create a cloud of particles that can go as deep as the original odor. The agent reacts with the residue particles, neutralizing them, and eliminating the odor.  

A final step, rarely used, is sealing exposed surfaces. An example includes the walls in areas like garages. If the odors are mild, and removal is not cost-effective, technicians cover the walls with a paint that contains an additional sealant chemical that forms a barrier against malodors.  

The final goal at SERVPRO of West Orange is to return each home to its clean, odor-free condition before the fire. If you have had a recent fire, or still have lingering odors from a previous incident, call us today at (407) 352-1569 to set up an inspection or service call.

Read more about Orlando here.

When Water Damages Your Orlando Vintage Clothing Store

5/20/2019 (Permalink)

Is water damage threatening your clothing boutique? Call SERVPRO to dry and restore your business.

Mitigating Commercial Water Damage in an Orlando Vintage Clothing Boutique

While Florida is certainly no stranger to severe weather, water-related issues often come from mundane sources, like pipe leaks and appliance failures. Unfortunately, these types of disasters often occur outside of regular business hours and, if left unchecked, can leave you with more than just water to worry about, like mold or structural damage. This concern is especially valid for retailers that deal with fabrics, clothing, and other porous items.  

If you find that a ceiling pipe leak has soaked part of the inventory in your business, our SERVPRO technicians are ready to come to you to mitigate commercial water damage in your Orlando vintage clothing boutique. Our team has the tools and training to handle your inventory with care and restore your facility to its preloss condition.  

The first step to preventing damage is to stop the source. If needed, we can turn off the water main and restore minor plumbing issues, such as damaged joints or rusted connections, but more in-depth issues may require a plumber. From there, we can address any currently standing water with tools like extraction wands and, if needed, portable extraction pumps.  

Fabrics can be especially delicate after exposure to water damage, and if left in such conditions can rot and even grow mold. However, our SERVPRO specialists can use commercial-grade drying equipment such as axial fans, air movers, and dehumidifiers to pull up moisture, move it outside, and replace the humid air with warm, dry air. We move waterlogged clothing to racks. For small amounts of inventory that need drying, small polyethylene chambers can be constructed to accelerate drying.  

SERVPRO of West Orange is always prepared to assist you in getting back to business as quickly as possible. If you need our services for cleaning up a disaster any time of the day or night, give us a call today at (407) 352-1569 and we can have a team there to ensure your business looks "Like it never even happened."

Read more about Orlando here.

Our Technicians Have The Right Tools To Handle Your Orlando Water Damage

5/11/2019 (Permalink)

Whether you have a plumbing leak, a roof leak, or any other water damage give SERVPRO a call to stop the flooding and get your home repaired quickly.

Left your bathtub faucet running? Call SERVPRO!

We've all been forgetful in our lives. Sometimes we leave keys at home, lose wallets, or forget where we parked a car. However, sometimes being forgetful can have major consequences for you and your home. Leaving your faucets running in your Orlando home can quickly lead to disaster for your walls and insulation. If not cleaned up, water can seep into walls and insulation which is why it is critical to quickly get the help of clean up professionals.

SERVPRO Technicians are experienced in mitigating water damage to walls and insulation in Orlando homes. They can quickly arrive at your home and begin the clean up process. We can clean up water in your home with the use of wet vacs, or, if spillage is severe, we can use pumps to clean water from your home. The longer water is left in your home, the greater the chance that it will seep into the insulation that keeps your home warm. Unless you have fiberglass insulation, then it may not be possible to restore the insulating power of your insulation once it absorbs water. Insulation may mat or lose its fire resistance value when affected by water.

We can use air movers and dehumidifiers to force moisture out of your walls and remove excess moisture from your insulation. Water damage from a faucet that was left on tends not be severe, and our IICRC certified professionals can often successfully dry fiberglass insulation without it having to be replaced.

To finalize the drying process, we can inspect your walls with moisture meters to check if water has entered your wall cavities. If excess moisture is discovered, we may have to drill ventilation holes and peel paint to allow water to escape from your walls.

If a small mistake has caused your home to experience flooding, then call SERVPRO of West Orange at (407) 352-1569. We can help make you feel "Like it never even happened."

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Where to Start With Orlando Water Damage Remediation?

4/30/2019 (Permalink)

Don't be stuck dealing with water damage in your home. Contact SERVPRO today for all your water damage remediation needs.

SERVPRO Eliminates Water Damage in Orlando Home Before the Guests Arrive

Not every water damage call finds water standing in the home and multiple rooms affected. Sometimes a water loss issue can be tiny but mighty. Such as a slow leak that has gone unnoticed for an extended period until it announces itself with both odor and a wet area.

SERVPRO was called to assist with water damage in an Orlando home. A leak under a not-too-often-used guest bathroom in their home had been found as they were prepping the room for visitors and noticed the cabinet under the bathroom sink was wet. After the homeowner had the pipe repaired their next call was to us.

Our local emergency response team arrived quickly to inspect the Orlando water damage and got to work immediately. On inspection, the pipe had been steadily dripping for a long time, and wood underneath was warped and drywall by the pipe too saturated to restore through our drying methods. Moisture detection confirmed the wall and area under the cabinet needed drying.

Technicians removed the damaged drywall and bottom of the cabinet to allow for sufficient airflow and complete drying. Air movers were positioned to dry the interior of the cabinet and back wall. The area under the cabinet showed an area of moisture retention, so our technicians set up an Injecti-Dry configuration to force air under the cabinet area.

Once dry, the areas affected by the moisture were wiped down and disinfected with our professional-grade formulas. Our SERVPRO location offers building services, and our technicians suggested to the homeowner the necessary repairs and restorations needed for returning the cabinet to preloss condition. The homeowner and adjuster approved the work, and we installed a new bottom to the cabinet and replaced the damaged drywall. Now, guests can enjoy the room without any signs there was a leaky pipe.

The key to limiting water damage in your home is to call SERVPRO of West Orange at (407) 352-1569 as soon as you see an issue. Our training and equipment mean we can make your water loss, "Like it never even happened."

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Professionals Talk About Flood Damage Restoration in Orlando

4/18/2019 (Permalink)

Storms and flooding are a common occurrence in Florida. SERVPRO of West Orange is on call 24/7 to restore your home.

Preventing Flood Damage in an Orlando Home

Florida is no stranger to structural damage from heavy rain. It can be quite the hassle, however, to come home from work and find that rain accumulation on the low spots of your roof caused an unsightly ceiling and wall leak in your bedroom. Not only is it almost impossible to mitigate damage on your own, but it takes a team of professionals to ensure the structural components of your home are thoroughly cleaned and dried to prevent mold, cupping, warping, and other issues that can lead to long-term problems.  

If you find weather-related flood damage in your Orlando residence, SERVPRO technicians are ready to come to you and restore your home to its pre-existing condition 24/7. Our certified, professionals have the tools and methods to clean, dry, and deodorize your residence after it has been affected by roof flooding.  

Our team can use a wide variety of water detection equipment to evaluate moisture levels both in the air and on surfaces and mitigate damage to structures as a result. SERVPRO utilizes moisture sensors to get a preliminary read on porous surfaces such as carpet. Infrared imaging and moisture meters are also used to get a read of moisture levels behind walls and on surfaces.  

After moving and preserving furniture and fixtures in your home, our team can get to work placing air movers and dehumidifiers in strategic locations to pull absorbed moisture out of surfaces and into the air, where they can be sucked up by a low grain refrigerant (LGR) dehumidifier. This machine works by passing moist air over refrigerated coils, and in the process collects and drains water, and expels dry air. This process can be aided by the setup of polyethylene partitions, which can accelerate drying.  

SERVPRO of West Orange is dedicated to providing the community with around-the-clock disaster cleanup you can count on to mitigate damage in your home. Call (407) 352-1569 today, and we can have a team ready to address your disaster within hours.

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Why SERVPRO Is The Leader In Orlando Mitigation

4/10/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO can help you recover as quickly as possible. We are here to help 24/7 so don't hesitate and call us right away.

Contents Restoration after Fire damage in Orlando

A fire in the home is more often than not contained relatively easily causing minor damage to the structure itself. However, the restoration of your contents can seem an arduous task, especially since different types of smoke damages require different cleaning methods to be effective. We use a range of proprietary methods to help restore rather than replace your contents after the initial impact of fire has been handled.

One of the critical aspects of our service is helping the community restore contents after fire damage in Orlando. Remediating is not only more cost-effective; it can also help homeowners who do not want to replace possessions they may have spent years accumulating. SERVPRO technicians are dedicated to getting your home, and its contents, back to preloss conditions without resorting to expensive replacements.

The types of material that burn in a fire have a significant influence on the damages caused as well as the best methods for cleaning them away. Synthetic materials, for example, burn at lower temperatures than natural ones. They also release different smoke residues, known as wet smoke, which can be spread around causing further damage if not recognized immediately.

SERVPRO technicians conduct a pre-test of all fire damaged materials first to avoid applying a one-size-fits-all method for restoration of contents. Usually, most surfaces respond well to a combination of wet, dry and 'spray & wipe' cleaning. However, this method is not comprehensively effective and may cause the dye in certain fabrics to run, shrink or for soiling to be absorbed beneath the surface.

Porous materials like upholsteries, mattresses, fabrics, and curtains can often become damp from water used during firefighting procedure. The moisture causes soots to set into the fabric, becoming stubborn and difficult to clean. SERVPRO use foam cleaning on these type of surface to help draw soiling out without soaking the material or causing it to shrink. Valuable contents like jewelry or precious metals can be sent to a facility for immersion cleaning using ultrasonic machines.

Restoring your contents is our specialty, contact SERVPRO of West Orange at (407) 352-1569 to begin getting your home back to preloss conditions.

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Want to Step Up Your Orlando Fire Damage Recovery? You Need To Read This First

4/7/2019 (Permalink)

When smoke and soot damage overwhelm your home, contact team SERVPRO for effective remediation efforts. Call us right away for best results.

Life in Orlando is Magical - Do Not Let Fire Damage to Your Home Overwhelm You

Orlando is a magical place for those who visit and those who choose to live there. Ideal for those running away from cold weather, it offers the benefits of a big city without the extreme hustle and bustle of places like Los Angeles or New York. Even though homeowners need to be vigilant during hurricane season, the area is not prone to devastating natural disasters regularly. However, Mother Nature is not the only one that can leave you in need of professional home restoration services. Accidents happen every day, and you never know when you may need to reach out for help.

If your life is suddenly affected by fire damage to your Orlando home, SERVPRO is here to help. Something as simple as a kitchen fire can leave your home in disarray when you take into account the fire itself along with water damage caused by sprinklers and extinguishers. Our IICRC-certified staff is available 24/7 to take action and return your home to mint condition.

Understanding the path of the fire and smoke is crucial in formulating an action plan. Knowing the telltale signs of damage helps our SERVPRO crew determine where to put their efforts to remove any remaining water and the placement of air movers and dehumidifiers. Tools such as hygrometers help us confirm when the air quality and moisture level of your home is back to normal.

One of the most concerning issues after a fire is the smell left behind by the smoke. Our SERVPRO team applies industry best practices to remove soot and smoke residue from each surface and to eliminate the offending smell. For some jobs, it is sufficient to add deodorizing pellets, whereas for others an ozone generator helps us neutralize the smell. More often than not, we use a combination of techniques to achieve full success.

Enjoy your life in Orlando and rest assured that SERVPRO of West Orange is by your side. By simply calling (407) 352-1569 you will find a whole team devoted to leaving your home "Like it never even happened."

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We Can Restore Your Commercial Property In Orlando After A Water Damage Disaster

4/4/2019 (Permalink)

At SERVPRO, our goal is to return each pre-school and other area business to operational status as quickly as we can finish the task.

Removing And Cleaning Commercial Water Damage In Orlando

With Orlando being halfway up the state and as far inland as possible, the damage from water incidents comes as often from plumbing failures as it does from the weather. Depending on the type of business affected, priorities can include removal, drying the facility, and reducing humidity.

When commercial water damage happens to an Orlando pre-school, the manager’s main concern is the health of her young students. For SERVPRO, that means our restoration team has to ensure the facility is not just dry, but completely cleaned and physically safe before reopening its doors.

Usually, a plumbing failure results in ‘clean’ water from the inlet pipe spilling out through a split line or a faulty overhead sprinkler. Even with this clean water, it quickly covers everything and can cause mold spores to expand and grow, looking for a food source like drywall.

SERVPRO team members begin by turning off the water above the source of the leak or shutting off the water completely if necessary. Our specialists can make many minor repairs, but if there is a major plumbing issue, the team leader recommends the owner bring in a licensed plumber.

Next, they remove any standing water using pumps and extractions devices to clear out the facility. Before the damp surfaces begin to dry, specialists spray each one with an anti-fungal agent to halt any mold growth and prevent other spores from expanding.

If the water in the pre-school came from a backed up toilet, this is considered ‘gray’ or ‘black’ water, depending if there is human waste present. If there is, specialists begin by spraying an anti-bacterial agent over the water surface and on any item that might have been touched by the contaminated water. When removing this type of water, specialists pump it directly into the nearest sewer entrance, if available, or a tank truck for disposal at a water treatment plant.

Once our team members clean the affected surfaces, they use air movers, fans, and dehumidifiers to return the pre-school to a dry, safe condition. Specialists would use the same equipment, regardless if the water were clean or contaminated.

At SERVPRO of West Orange, our goal is to return each pre-school and other area business to operational status as quickly as we can finish the task. If this situation describes the current condition for your business, call us today at (407) 352-1569 to schedule an inspection. We are here for you.

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How SERVPRO Handles The Most Challenging Odors After An Orlando Fire

4/4/2019 (Permalink)

Call our certified professionals to restore your home after a fire. We have the equipment to make your home livable again so you can rest easy.

Effective Fire Odor Removal for Your Orlando Property

Not all fires that can affect your Orlando home come with widespread detrimental effects that make it impossible for homeowners and their families to remain. Even with smaller scale fires that can break out, there are still potentially problematic symptoms that can linger and make comfortable living a challenge for families. Odors can be a significant hurdle to overcome after a fire, and our professionals can help with effective tools and containment strategies to help you breathe easier.

While many effects often come with small scale fire damage in your Orlando home, odors are often the most challenging to overcome because they tend to spread the farthest from the initial combustion site. Our SERVPRO professionals have effective containment strategies to help limit the spread of these noxious scents throughout the property, and we also have advanced deodorization tools to make short work of foul odor molecules.

With the arrival of our team members to your address, we can assess the spread of foul odors throughout the property to gain the parameters for our containment strategies. With the use of physical plastic sheeting barriers and our advanced tools like the hydroxyl generator, we can begin to reduce the presence of harsh odors quickly. One hydroxyl generator can treat an area of several thousand cubic feet, helping us to make a difference in an affected area by fire damage fast.

For more direct deodorization of affected areas, we can utilize equipment like our thermal fogger. This machine releases a dense chemical compound that is odorless. When this chemical comes into contact with harsh odor molecules, it breaks the molecule apart and neutralizes the smell. This approach is safe to use on soft materials like furniture, clothing, and carpeting.

Odor removal can be an intricate process, especially in circumstances where tear out and reconstruction is not necessary. You can always depend on our SERVPRO of West Orange rapid response team to arrive quickly with the personnel and equipment to get rid of lingering odors fast. Give us a call anytime you need us at (407) 352-1569.

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When Trees Cause Water Damage to Your Orlando Home

3/29/2019 (Permalink)

Did you know that SERVPRO provides emergency board up and tarping services?

Tree Damage That Leads to Flooding in Your Orlando Home

With the severe weather that can affect your Orlando home throughout the year, homes have become more and more reinforced against the gale-force winds and potential hazards of these often intense events. Even with reinforced construction and precautions designed to help protect your home against severe weather events, there are variables like weakening trees that can pose the same level of risk. If a tree falls into your home, or large branch damages your roof, you can welcome detrimental effects like flooding into your property.

Storm damage in Orlando can take many paths to lead to flood damage in your home. As challenging as flooding can be to clean up and remove from your home, professional restoration technicians like our SERVPRO team have efficient equipment and approaches to help this process go faster and prove more efficient overall. From extraction to high-efficiency drying solutions, we have the industry-leading equipment to make a difference quickly in your flooded home.

With our licensed contractors, we can work quickly to provide emergency board up and tarping services to prevent further flooding to your home. These solutions can also come simultaneously with our other restoration technicians working on setting up the extraction equipment to remove standing water from affected areas of your home. Once the storm has passed, these same contractors can work to fully repair the damage to your home from the fallen tree, remove the tree and its remnants from your property, and assess the rest of the house for any storm damage.

Cleaning up the flood damage inside begins with the extraction of standing water, but rests most heavily on the effective drying equipment that our technicians use. With a high volume of air movers, dehumidifiers, and specialty drying equipment, our SERVPRO team can effectively reduce all present moisture and saturation to prevent unnecessary tear out and reconstruction inside.

Tree damage is more common than many area homeowners might believe. With the high winds expected in severe weather systems throughout the year, knowing whom to call in an emergency can save you time and money on the restoration. Give our SERVPRO of West Orange rapid response team a call 24/7 at (407) 352-1569.

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When Your Lake Buena Vista Outlet Store Experiences A Water Damage Disaster, You Need Help From The Experts At SERVPRO!

3/4/2019 (Permalink)

You can reach our SERVPRO of West Orange rapid response team anytime by calling (407) 352-1569.

Fast Cleanup For Your Water-Damaged Lake Buena Vista Outlet Store

With so many appealing attractions to the greater Lake Buena Vista area, including its proximity to both beaches and world-renowned entertainment venues, your outlet store is ideally placed to capitalize on the travelers and tourists constantly in the area. Whenever water loss incidents occur within your building, you cannot afford to shut your business down for long with the potential profits you would be missing out on, so make sure you reach out to our professionals right away.

While water damage incidents in your Lake Buena Vista outlet store can happen from numerous sources, the bathroom areas of your business are often persistent threats for damage. From physical damage to fixtures that allow overflows to potential malfunctions of these same bathroom staples like the toilet or sink, water can pool quickly throughout this portion of your facility and quickly spread to affect adjacent spaces. Our SERVPRO professionals can respond to this emergency fast with mitigation strategies that protect your stock and work to limit the time that your doors have to remain closed to shoppers.

The first step once our team arrives is assessing the damage as efficiently as possible. While our water restoration team arrives with a production vehicle stocked with extraction and drying equipment, we must determine what machines are necessary to maximize our effectiveness and get the job completed as fast as possible.

With the assessment completed, we can set up air movers and dehumidifiers in vital areas of your shop to begin forcing moisture out of saturated elements and materials. With a fast response to your emergency, our SERVPRO professionals can often effectively preserve exposed materials to avoid reconstruction and costlier out-of-pocket expenses.

While you want to remain available to the influx of shoppers that you can expect in the area all year round, addressing concerns in your shop like water loss incidents requires the expertise and experience of qualified professionals like ours. You can reach our SERVPRO of West Orange rapid response team anytime by calling (407) 352-1569.

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Avoid Delays When Dealing With Orlando Commercial Water Damage

2/28/2019 (Permalink)

Delicate and unique items need a quick response when it comes to water damage. Contact our experienced team immediately if your space has an event.

Keeping Water Damage from Ruining Exhibits in Your Orlando Museum

As a curator of art and history for travelers and residents of Orlando, you take great pride in the artifacts, works of art, and relics that you have acquired to fill the exhibits of your museum. As much public excitement as many of these items can devise, and how interest in your museum can help to fund further expeditions and excursions to better understand the past, you have a constant mindset to protect these items at all costs. With indoor plumbing piped to the facilities guests can use and work areas for your staff, it is important to have a plan in place to restore water loss incidents should they occur.

You can neither predict nor completely remove the possibility of water damage occurring in your Orlando museum. The best that you can hope is to prepare yourself by knowing whom to call whenever these disasters occur. This choice should get based on who can arrive quickly, protect your investments and acquisitions, and get your doors open quickly again to the public. Our SERVPRO professionals can help.

Our team has industry-leading equipment that can extract and dry even substantial water loss incidents quickly, which can help to avoid costly material replacement and reconstruction. Additionally, we have effective mitigation strategies that can work with your personnel of the museum to protect at-risk items in the damaged areas of your facility from suffering the devastating effects of moisture and saturation.

Whether these items get carefully moved to another wing of the museum and out of harm’s way or to our nearby SERVPRO facility for focused and attentive drying efforts, we can ensure that these exhibits do not become irreparably damaged with our fast response and experience.

Running a museum can be stressful enough without a persistent threat of damages and disasters. If you experience water damage in your facility, let our SERVPRO of West Orange rapid response team help to make it “Like it never even happened.” Give us a call today at (407) 352-1569.

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Why Preventative Maintenance is a Key Part to Stopping Water Damage in Winter Garden

2/24/2019 (Permalink)

The aging windows in your home can cause both water damage and a mold infestation. Contact our team to assess and remediate today.

Some of the Different Causes of Water Damage Affecting a Winter Garden Home

Homeowners in Winter Garden put a significant amount of effort into maintaining their homes, both inside and outside. The condition of a house in the area becomes very obvious when something needs attention, due to the contrast involved between pristine areas and those needing attention.

When your house in Winter Garden develops water damage, it can also create a musty odor. The visible signs and this new smell make it all that more important to start the mitigation process. Preventing such damage is almost always possible, however, and SERVPRO's specialists can help you protect your home, saving your home from unnecessary problems.

Water damage comes from different sources of moisture, elevated humidity, or lost and misplaced water. Correcting the situations that allow these to remain inside your home can stop water damage from ever occurring. Checking water feed lines to appliances and fixing leaky drains and other plumbing fixtures solve many of the most common problems.

Other areas to look at in your home might require the help of a professional. Exhaust fans in your bathroom and over the stove need to work well so they can draw the steam out of your living area. A functioning fan protects one area of your house. The vent in these areas should be part of a continuous network that leads directly to the outside vent, without any breaks or extra lengths or unnecessary turns in the ducts between them. Breaks release moisture and extra bends in the ducts allow moisture to become trapped inside, where it can corrode the duct and cause holes.

Leaky windows that let rain inside your home might go undetected if the water drains into the space between the exterior and the interior surfaces of the wall underneath the window. Situations like this are why we use our infrared thermal imaging devices. Hidden water like this shows a visible change on these cameras that cannot be seen by the naked eye and let us know, even after the rain stops pouring down, where such problems occur.

SERVPRO of West Orange is always here for you when it comes to water damage mitigation and subsequent clean-up of your Oakland, Bay Hill, or Disney World-area home. Call us at (407) 352-1569 for assistance in both prevention and mitigation.

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Lake Buena Vista Destination Sites Benefit from SERVPRO's Discreet Mold Remediation Services

2/24/2019 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation Needed in Your Lake Buena Vista Hotel? Ring for SERVPRO

Mold Remediation for Your Lake Buena Vista Hotel

Much of the business that you get at your Lake Buena Vista hotel is from travelers headed to the greater Orlando area to appreciate exciting destinations like Disney World or Universal Studios. Considering that both of these premier amusement resorts are open all year long, you cannot afford a costly damaging disaster that prevents you from utilizing the full availability of your rooms. Also, a disaster like a mold growth could damage your established reputation on sites like Yelp, which can ultimately cost you future business.

Remediation and restoration following mold damage in your Lake Buena Vista hotel revolve around a fast response to the situation. Often business owners do not realize that they have met the conditions for mold growth to occur until they get posed with a spreading colony. Our SERVPRO professionals can arrive quickly after you call to begin containment efforts to limit the spread of this organism while we establish a plan to remove all of the active colonization.

Depending on the location of mold growth in your hotel, you have to make certain that you have guests far removed from the potentially harmful effects that exposure can cause. Instead of attempting to remove active colonies on your own with your janitorial staff, you should trust in the experience and equipment that arrives with our SERVPRO rapid response team.

Our objective with mold remediation is to provide efficient removal of the fungi and ensure that whatever moisture concerns existed that allowed the growth has also gotten remedied. We understand that most mold damaging conditions are localized and by cordoning off a small area we may minimize distuptions to your guests and to your occupancy number. The faster that you can handle this damaging incident in your hotel, the fewer areas and materials that become affected and the easier it becomes for our remediation technicians to resolve this situation quickly and preserve your reputation.

With the high volume of travelers and tourists that frequent the area for its world-renowned amusement properties and entertainment venues, do not let a disaster like a mold growth keep you from profiting. Our SERVPRO of West Orange mold remediation specialists are available 24/7 at (407) 352-1569.

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Water Damage Can Spell Big Trouble For Your Lake Buena Vista Home

2/16/2019 (Permalink)

If you want to make water damage “Like it never even happened,” give our SERVPRO of West Orange rapid response team a call today.

How Serious Is Water Damage In Lake Buena Vista Homes?

Multiple situations could result in damages to Lake Buena Vista home. While storm damages obviously sit high on this list, as severe weather plays a constant role in the need for restoration throughout this area, other causes for water loss incidents occur from within the house. The trouble with these scenarios is that many homeowners do not believe there is a pressing concern for professional restoration for a seemingly localized event, though water loss incidents are rarely so easily cleaned or dried.

Whether a faulty appliance is to blame or aging plumbing, water damage in your Lake Buena Vista home can prove very problematic for structural integrity and longevity of materials used in your house. Understanding the effect that water damage can have on your home is important to appreciating you need for fast responding professional restorers once a situation arises. Our SERVPRO professionals offer fast response times, 24/7, to protect the investment that you have made in your home from the hazards of spreading water damage.

Water can spread quickly from the source, absorbing into materials and seeping through cracks and openings to affect flooring and wall cavities. While superficial cleaning efforts can appear to dry up this damage, much of it persists and continues out of sight. Allowing moisture and dampness to persist in your home can cause multiple issues, beginning with the continued degradation and deterioration of affected materials. Secondly, this damp area can allow mold spores to seat and thrive, adding mold remediation onto the list of professional services that your home needs.

Drying out the affected areas of your home requires advanced equipment designed to work quickly. The faster these tools can work to remove the moisture, the more of these saturated materials that can get preserved. Our air movers and LGR dehumidifiers can work together to dry up saturated materials and open areas.

No matter what has allowed water damage to affect your home, taking the right steps to recover from this situation quickly is vital to protecting your home and its occupants. If you want to make water damage “Like it never even happened,” give our SERVPRO of West Orange rapid response team a call today at (407) 352-1569.

Click here for more about Lake Buena Vista.

When You Have Fire Damage In Your Ocoee Home Call The Professionals

1/23/2019 (Permalink)

Fire devastation can feel overwhelming but the professionals are here for you 24/7.

Soot Removal Following a Fire in Your Ocoee Home

Soot can be one of the most challenging effects for restoration technicians after fire damage in your Ocoee home. After a fire has occurred, multiple symptoms and effects spread throughout the property, but only soot and smoke damages can travel far beyond the initial combustion areas to affect surfaces, contents, and construction materials. Soot especially can build up quickly on surfaces and can travel through the ductwork of your heating and air conditioning system to reach rooms and areas far away from the source of the fire. Overcoming these effects takes advanced equipment, and highly trained professionals like you find in our rapid response team.

From the moment that the fire gets extinguished in your Ocoee home, soot and smoke damages continue to travel throughout the property to come to rest on different contents and surfaces. Left alone long enough, soot can begin to stain the materials it reaches. Our SERVPRO professionals can work to assess the full spread of these effects and even set up temporary containment for soot to prevent further spread while our technicians prepare for removal and air purification strategies.

Cleaning surfaces involves elbow grease and equipment to help break apart sediment on surfaces and penetrate deeply into the affected materials with a powerful detergent that can lift out the staining from the soot. We can also employ advanced equipment in cleaning areas of your home like the HVAC system to prevent further spread of damaging soot particulates.

Removing loose soot particulates in the environment requires the installation of other industry-leading equipment like our air scrubbers, hydroxyl generators, and ozone machines. All of these pieces of equipment feature HEPA filters that can begin trapping particles, soot, dust, debris, ash, and other damaging elements within the air to improve overall indoor air quality substantially throughout a single day.

Our focus when responding to a fire damage emergency in your home is to react quickly to the situation to provide our customers with effective solutions that preserve what matters most when possible. Our highly-trained SERVPRO of West Orange team is available 24/7 by calling (407) 352-1569.

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How SERVPRO Restores Water Damage in Ocoee

1/17/2019 (Permalink)

Flash flooding can happen at any time in Florida. Call SERVPRO to remove the water damage from your home.

Severe Storms Can Quickly Flood Your Ocoee Home

With the devastating hurricanes that have affected Florida over the past several years, Ocoee residents perpetually have flooding and property damage on their minds. While homeowners can't prevent high-powered weather systems like these from damaging their homes and allowing for flooding, how they respond to the situation can save time and money.

Working to prevent flood damage can feel like an uphill battle that Ocoee homeowners do not get adequately prepared to face. Our SERVPRO professionals work quickly to ensure that all properties that require fast and efficient mitigation and restoration practices from skilled professionals like ours see the attention they deserve. Even with stretched resources with widespread disasters throughout our communities, our trained professionals work tirelessly to provide the same level of care and consideration to everyone who requires it.

Part of our ability to help customers affected by flooding in these or other instances is our commitment to remain available 24/7. This availability ensures that no potential customer waits for the mitigation work that we provide such as pack-outs to protect the contents of a home or fast extraction and drying efforts to preserve water-damaged structural elements when possible.

Another facet of our service through widespread or localized flooding in our communities is our advanced equipment and technology. Our team can conclusively determine moisture pockets and problem areas in a property with our thermal imagery cameras. We can quickly dry out affected materials and areas of a home with our combined efforts of air movers and dehumidifiers. We stock these items on the SERVPRO Green Fleet, so they are with the team when they first arrive at your address.

Providing flood restoration for your home depends exclusively on your response to the situation and securing the efforts of our highly trained professionals. You can depend on our SERVPRO of West Orange rapid response team, and we are available 24/7 by calling (407) 352-1569.

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Timing Is Vital When It Comes To Water Damage In Your Ocoee Home

1/10/2019 (Permalink)

Give our experts a call anytime that you need us!

Why Fast Extraction Is Critical For Damaged Ocoee Homes

For as much as Ocoee residents know about flooding and the dangers of excessive water, it remains a mystery why so many deem smaller amounts inside of their property as less severe or threatening. While many interior water loss incidents do not require extraction and the same measures necessary to overcome the effects of flooding, it is still a situation that requires a fast response to protect vital construction materials and protect your home from threatening secondary effects like mold growth.

For situations that do require water extraction in your Ocoee residence, it is critical to contact a professional restoration company immediately. With pooling water, exposed materials can begin to distort and erode in as little as a day, which can make them unsalvageable for even the experienced SERVPRO technicians we can dispatch to your address after the emergency.

When we arrive at your home following a water loss incident, it is our utmost priority to identify the source of the damage and determine what can or must be done to prevent this same situation from occurring a second time. In some situations, this is repairing busted plumbing. In others, it might be repairing damage to your roof that allows water penetration into the attic. Whatever source has allowed for this excess of water into your home, we have to repair it.

Our SERVPRO arrives quickly to the scene of your water loss incident because our professionals are ready 24 hours a day to help a customer in need. We have our equipment and tools loaded into our Green Fleet and ready to roll out to an emergency shortly after we get that initial call. It is that fast response that helps us to save our customers money and to make restoration projects more efficient overall.

With a situation that requires extraction, you need a team of experienced professionals with the equipment to remove the water from your home fast. Our SERVPRO of West Orange rapid response team can arrive quickly and work immediately to improve the damage your home has sustained. Give our experts a call anytime that you need us at (407) 352-1569.

Click here for more about Ocoee.

Some Effective Ways to Remediate Ocoee Water Damage

12/30/2018 (Permalink)

When water damage affects your home, timing is critical. Call SERVPRO right away for water remediation services.

Problems We Avoid Through Fast Water Removal in Ocoee Homes

Through years of experience helping local homeowners in Ocoee handle water removal crises, we have learned just how crucial it is to get on the site fast and remove moisture as quickly as possible. If too much time is allowed to pass between the flood or damaging event and when we start drying the building out, extra complications can arise that can cost thousands of dollars and require significantly more time to reverse than situations in which we arrive quickly. Here are some of the effects you can avoid with a fast water removal process in your home.

Foundational Damage
One of the costliest results of slow water removal in Ocoee homes can be damage to the foundation of your home. Large volumes of water can be heavy and press down on your home's foundation, all while searching for cracks and crevices to creep into and widen. Standing water can quickly cause significant damage to your home's foundation that requires a large reconstruction process to correct, but these problems can be avoided with a fast response from a company like SERVPRO.

Damage to Baseboards and Flooring
Baseboard and flooring materials can be damaged beyond repair if they remain soaked for too long, forcing us to go through with costly replacements rather than restoring the original materials to their pre-damage state. If we respond fast enough, we can prevent materials like wood and some types of carpeting from bending and warping as water changes their shape on a microscopic level.

Mold Prevention
Mold grows quickly with plenty of water in the home, and although SERVPRO is fully licensed and certified to handle mold infestations when they arise, we prefer to circumvent these issues altogether by drying your home before spores get a chance to grow. Mold grows exponentially, meaning that just a few hours could make the difference between a nonexistent and a massive problem.

SERVPRO of West Orange can help remove water from your home after a flood, appliance malfunction, or other disasters. Call us at (407) 352-1569.
 
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What Few People Know About Water Damage Resulting From Plumbing Failure in Ocoee

12/23/2018 (Permalink)

When plumbing fails in your home, water damage is a quick result. Contact SERVPRO to assess and then remediate the damage.

The Risks of Aging Plumbing in Ocoee Homes

You might be among the many Ocoee homeowners who believe that houses do not get constructed as they used to and that tradecrafts are not as skilled as they might have once been. You might consider plumbing to be one of the trades that have gone the way of simpler setups and materials over the years, but this has become a reason that these networks of pipes have resisted deterioration and degradation. Aging plumbing might have been put in with great care, but these systems are only ever as strong as their weakest component.

While you can often troubleshoot a problem with the plumbing in your home before simple water damage in Ocoee turns into indoor flooding, these situations require almost the same degree of urgency. Saturation of exposed materials begins immediately when leaking water from a plumbing connection interacts with the walls, flooring, ceiling, or other material. Our SERVPRO professionals can help you to both identify the source of the problem and offer effective solutions to restore the damage that it has caused.

As pipes age, especially a variety like galvanized steel that was common in home construction before the 1960s, they can corrode or allow scaling and buildup to occur on the inside, reducing pressure to the fixtures. While you might experience a lower pressure at the faucet, the same or even heightened pressure exists where the water gets throttled down in the lines, which can lead to separations, leaks, ruptures, and other concerns. Our SERVPRO professionals can use leak detection equipment to identify the precise point of the problem to focus our efforts on removing the present moisture immediately.

You might not immediately recognize the signs of a plumbing issue, especially if this situation has existed since you moved in. If you encounter water damage or weakening structural components, you can always count on our SERVPRO of West Orange water restoration technicians to help you diagnose the problem and restore the damage it has caused. Give us a call today at (407) 352-1569.

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Contact SERVPRO When You See Water Damage In Your Ocoee Home

12/5/2018 (Permalink)

When you see signs of water damage to your drywall call SERVPRO

Preserving Water-Damaged Drywall in Ocoee Homes

Water disasters can affect your Ocoee home in several different ways. While ultimately you want professionals that can help you to overcome all of these potential effects, there is an order of importance to restoring the property to protect as many at-risk materials as possible. Our franchise has the trained technicians able to diagnose potential problems with exposed materials and utilize our equipment to dry out this damage before it becomes too challenging to salvage.

Drywall is especially susceptible to the spread and saturation of water damages in your Ocoee home. Taking care of these materials quickly can help to greatly reduce necessary removals and make the reconstruction phase of the restoration process more efficient and streamlined. With drywall being a porous material, it can easily absorb water when the material becomes exposed, which starts to saturate the walls immediately. The longer this problem persists, the more dramatic these effects become until our SERVPRO professionals not only have to remove the material but contend with the possibility of secondary effects like mold growth as well.

One of the initial phases of our inspection and mitigation process is to determine the moisture content inside of and behind the walls of your home. We use moisture detection equipment like our thermal imagery cameras to determine moisture pockets that require attention. This same equipment can help to note how widespread the saturation is from the base of the wall up towards the ceiling. We mark out the dry line and often cut out all of the oversaturated drywall beneath this point to replace it with fresh, new material. Our SERVPRO professionals then have better access to dry out the newly exposed wall cavities with our high-powered air movers and dehumidification equipment.

Drywall is often one of the first materials to take the worst of the potential damages from a water incident occurring on your property. You can help to preserve most of these damaged elements by reaching out to our SERVPRO of West Orange rapid response team as soon as disaster strikes. Give us a call today at (407) 352-1569.

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Windemere Water Loss Property Owners Know SERVPRO Is the Right Choice for Help

11/29/2018 (Permalink)

For Industrial Grade Water Removal and Drying Equipment After a Water Loss in Windermere--Please Call SERVPRO

Why SERVPRO Is The Full-Service Choice To Restore Windermere Water Damage

When your home in Windermere experiences a water emergency, it is crucial to complete all the steps necessary to make it “Like it never even happened.” Avoid the confusion and chaos of handling the problem yourself or working with a series of contractors when you connect with our multi-talented professional team. We commit to completing the following tasks to make sure your home is back to preloss condition.

Water damage can trace to a wide array of causes in Windermere. Our location in Orange County offers the warmth and beauty of central Florida but can also put your home in harm's way when seasonal storms or even hurricanes bring high winds and torrential rains. If the weather challenges leave your home untouched, internal household water crises from leaky pipes to appliance breakage expose the structure and contents of your house to water damage. We begin with a full assessment of the scenario, and then implement an effective plan to restore your property.

We remove standing water and use advanced scanning and moisture metering equipment to find lingering moisture and cavities retaining water. Pumps and wanded extractors do most of the work, although we also use specialized tools like floor drying mats with negative pressure generators to pull moisture from several layers. Investment in efficient water damage restoration equipment and training in innovative strategies is why SERVPRO is an industry leader.

The baseline moisture readings taken by IICRC-trained technicians assist our Structural Drying team in determining drying goals. SERVPRO crew members position air movers and heaters to transform water trapped in building material into a vapor. The water vapor then condenses for disposal when we use an evaporative dehumidifier. Desiccant dehumidifiers remove the vapor by absorption. Periodic moisture measurements ensure the drying configuration is effective, and our skilled and experienced team adapt the positioning of air movers and temperature to improve the process if necessary.

Sometimes personal property is exposed to water damage. We then help with a pack-out to a dry area of your home or our production facility. The flexibility of our operation to meet your needs is why SERVPRO is a wise choice. No two water damage situations are the same, and we design a restoration plan that fits your requirements.

SERVPRO of West Orange is a team of experienced professionals ready to help with any water damage catastrophe. Call our office at (407) 352-1569 for a speedy response to your water loss.

Click here for an historical factoid.

Windermere Storms Harmed Your Property?? No Problem, Call SERVPRO for Full Service Help

11/29/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO to the Rescue in Windermere From Storm to Cleanup to Rebuild

The Real Risks of Storm Damage to Your Windermere Home

Severe weather systems pass through the Windermere area frequently throughout certain periods in the year. The better prepared that homes are for this inevitability, the less likely they are to become victims of flooding and other similar effects. When storms damage your property, you want to know that you can get this situation resolved quickly before it can lead to worsening conditions, if it has not already allowed flooding to access your home.

Flood damages can be a challenge to overcome in your Windermere home, especially when you already have exterior damages to your house to contend with as well. Our experienced SERVPRO technicians can assess the full scope of the exterior and interior damages in situations like this to provide the fastest possible care for the disaster.

With a licensed contracting division of our franchise, we can offer our customers a rounded experience that begins with a full inspection of the premises and ends with a fully restored home. The job does not need to involve other organizations and companies with their own timelines and schedules, which can slow down the overall restoration process for your home. We also work with you and your insurance adjuster, if one is involved, to determine the best path forward.

In addition to offering full reconstruction and remodeling services as a residential and commercial contractor, we can offer immediate board up services to prevent the acute damages that can result from prolonged or recurring storms passing through the area. While ultimately we can repair these vulnerable points completely, sealing over the area first can allow mitigation to happen without delay.

When recovering from flood damages, our SERVPRO team has the equipment to handle the damages fast. We have truck-mounted and gas-powered pumps capable of extracting water at 300 psi. With the combination of our air movers and dehumidifiers, we can dry up the area very quickly as well.

Storm damages might feel inevitable for many of the residents in the area, but knowing how to respond when it is your home that gets damaged is critical to preserving what matters most to you. Give our SERVPRO of West Orange emergency response team a call anytime an emergency threatens your property at (407) 352-1569.

Where is this area? right here.

Lake Buena Vista Houses and Condo Owners Rely on SERVPRO for Storm Loss Mitigation

11/19/2018 (Permalink)

Take the Kids to Disney World While SERVPRO Restores Your Storm-Damaged Lake Buena Vista Property

Flooding Risks After Storm Damage to Lake Buena Vista Homes

Lake Buena Vista residents are no strangers to the severe weather that could impact the area. While many homes have prepared themselves against the high-powered winds and hurricane-strength storms that can pass through with little warning, many of these defenses prove inadequate when faced with prolonged systems. If damage to the exterior of your home during a storm, occurs, you open your property to the possibility of substantial flooding.

The roof of your home is often the first to suffer significant concerns which can allow for flood damages to develop in Lake Buena Vista. Without a solid roof, runoff finds its way into the vulnerable, exposed portion and floods the attic space of your property. With this scenario, many homeowners remain unaware that a problem exists until this flood damage extends to the floors below.

At the first sign of flooding on your property, you should reach out to the experienced rapid response team that we have at SERVPRO. Our technicians have the skills and expertise to help mitigate your loss in a situation like this and have the equipment to extract excess water and dry the area as quickly as possible. We can do emergency board-up work to prevent further penetration of runoff and rainfall while the mitigation work continues. Who has not seen "blue tarps" covering numerous roofs in Florida?

Our franchise offers a comprehensive approach to the restoration that we offer our customers, especially when these residents have suffered from storm damages. Our experienced team can not only help to extract the water from the affected areas and dry up damaged elements, but we also have the experience and licensing to reconstruct and rebuild damaged areas of your home to prevent further delays in the complete restoration of your home. "Like it never even happened."

Many situations could threaten the exterior defenses of your home and leave you exposed to the possibility of flooding. Our SERVPRO of West Orange team can help limit the damage that this intruding water can do and offer efficient build back services to restore your home entirely. Give us a call anytime at (407) 352-1569.

Are you ready to make the move to here?

Preparing your home of business for a hurricane.

10/2/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO knows that when a disaster strikes the cleanup can be overwhelming. As the leader in water damage restoration, SERVPRO knows that fast mitigation is the key to limiting additional damage to your home or business, and in the case of a business, limiting business interruption. With over 1,500 franchises across the country, SERVPRO is faster to any size disaster and can be on-site within a few hours to reduce the amount of secondary damage that can be caused by allowing the water to sit. 

In the event of a hurricane here are some tips from FEMA to help you prepare 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 outdoor 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 as instructed by local authorities.
  • Turn off propane tanks
  • Ensure a water supply for sanitary purposes such as cleaning and flushing toilets. Fill the bathtub and other large containers with water.

Preparing your business is a litter different, but these tips from FEMA can help:

  • 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 your business from a different location or from your home? Can you develop a relationship with other local businesses to use their facilities if a disaster makes your location unusable?

While we all hope for a year free from hurricanes, we know that they are inevitable at times. You can rest assured that SERVPRO of West Orange will be available to assist you with your home or business in the event of a natural disaster.

Storm Damage? SERVPRO Can Help!

10/1/2018 (Permalink)

Don't let storm damage blow you away! SERVPRO can help resolve storm damage to your home or office!

Our thoughts and prayers are with those impacted by hurricane Florence. This storm caused damage that will take a long time to repair and people are still without power.  Often times you don't realize how much you rely on daily conveniences like power and air conditioning until you have to go with out them. 

Luckily, this hurricane did not hit Central Florida, but there are still several storms lingering out there.  Even if these storm pass us by, we will still be at risk of hurricanes for a few more months.

Of course, it is not just hurricanes that can cause storm damage. In Central Florida, even routine thunderstorms can be particularly powerful.  We have seen heavy damage for hail, wind, rain and more in a matter of minutes and almost without warning.  

No matter how unexpected your storm damage, SERVPRO can help!  Our team of experts are trained to handle water damage, mold, fire and smoke damage, biohazards and mush more.  Nobody know more about these issues then we do!

Remember, our team is here 27/7 365 to help if you ever need us.  Whether you are the victim of flooding, fire, mold, or biohazard, our team of experts can help...and FAST!

Have You Been The Victim of Storm Damage?

10/1/2018 (Permalink)

Don't worry, whatever happens SERVPRO will be ready to help you when you get back home.

We see the same scenario over and over again. A massive storm forms in the Atlantic. Weather professionals have no real idea where it is going to go or how big a storm it will be until almost 24 hours ahead of time.

Some people evacuate and board of their home and businesses. Others stay behind to make sure everything will be OK. Unfortunately, in either case there is not a lot that can be done to prevent storm damage. From tropical storms to hurricanes, the damage can be significant and there is not much you can do to stop it from happening.

There is something to take comfort in. No matter what happens the damage can be repaired. While people are irreplaceable (and a lot harder to fix) property can be restored.

At SERVPRO, our team of professionals have seen in all. Mold, fire, smoke, water, trauma, biohazard and much more. Nothing surprises us and there is nothing we can't handle.

Not only can we repair whatever damage your property has incurred, we can work with your insurance company to make your claim process as quick and easy as possible. That's another benefit to using one of the largest repair and restoration companies in the country.

If you need us, just give us a call. Our team will be there, ready and willing to help, 24/7 365!

You Just Experienced A Fire... Now What?

10/1/2018 (Permalink)

A fire can be devastating, but we are here to help 24/7 365.

A fire in your home or office can be one of the  most overwhelming experiences of your life.  You find yourself standing in the middle of a room or building staring at the cared remains of your personal or professional life.  You have no idea what to do next.

Start by taking a deep breath and relaxing for a minute.  The fire is over and you can't undo the past.  All you can do now is get things back to normal.  Despite how bad things may look, it really is not as bad as it seems.

For starters, and most important, you are OK.  What you are looking at is property, which for the most part can be replaced or restored.  That's not so easy with people.

So, what do you do about the items that were damaged?  Start by calling your insurance company.  Let them know what happened and start the claims process.  

Your next call should be to your local SERVPRO.  Our team has unsurpassed expertise in handling fire/smoke damage and restoration. Whatever needs to happen, our team will handle it.  We can board up your property (if needed) and start the process of working with your insurance company to create a recovery plan that includes the complete restoration of your property.

There are also a few things you should not do:

· Do not wipe or attempt to clean anything.  This will be hard, but you need to leave this to the professionals to prevent further damage

· Do not walk around the property or sit on any furniture that was damaged.

· Do not eat any food or canned goods exposed to heat.

· Do use any medications that were exposed to heat

· Do not turn on any electrical appliances.

While this may all sound a bit overwhelming, everything will be fine. Our team of professionals will work with you and your insurance company to get your life back to normal as quickly as possible.

Smoke Damage? SERVPRO Can Help!

10/1/2018 (Permalink)

Have a smoke or fire issue? Let SERVPRO get it resolved quickly and easily so you can get back to your life!

While a fire causes damage that is easy to see, smoke damage is a lot less obvious.  As a fire burns smoke and soot are spread through the entire property, especially is the heating or air conditioning system happens to be running at the time of the fire.

Have you ever removed a t-shirt that seemed to be fine while you were wearing it, but it had a very bad smell once you removed it?  Well, the same thing happens with soot and smoke from a fire.

Curtains, rugs, furniture, clothing and lots of other items are going to quickly absorb the odors from the fire.  You may not notice it once you have spent sometime inside the area affected by the fire.  Everyone, else however, will experience these odors, likely very strong odors, as soon as they enter the property.

The experts at SERVPRO can eliminate these odors and get your home or office odor-free after a fire.  We have the equipment and expertise to handle everything that needs to be done.

We also work with you and your insurance company to get your fire and smoke claim resolved quickly and easily so you can get back to your life.  We will be with you through every step of the process from start to finish.

If you are the unfortunate victim of a fire or smoke issue call SERVPRO anytime - 24/7 365!

Top Mistakes To Avoid When Cleaning Mold and Mildew

10/1/2018 (Permalink)

Proud homeowners who find that they have a mold problem on their hands might be gung-ho about getting rid of the problem on a Do It Yourself (DIY) basis, primarily to save cost. If you happen to fall under this category, do take note that other homeowners in the past who felt the same way have gone through the motions and made the following mistakes to avoid when it comes to removing mold around the home.

Gotta Catch Them All! One of the most common mistakes in cleaning up mold is figuring out that you have gotten rid of the problem for good. After all, for visible mold that you have just wiped clean with a tea tree oil solution, there is probably more from where it came from which remains hidden from your view. After all, mold spores are very small and extremely light in its makeup. This makes it very easy to spread from one particular area of the home to another. A single patch of mold growing in one area of the home is enough signal to perform a thorough inspection of the rest of the house in order to make sure that not a single nook and cranny remains unlooked at.

Bleach is Not the Answer Most people think that bleach, with its cleaning power, is able to do wonders when it comes to getting rid of mold. While bleach is rather effective when it comes to killing and removing mold from hard and non-porous surfaces, it does not get to the root of the problem. In order to make a bleach solution more effective, you should perform a mop up operation using an antimicrobial cleanser.

Fire and Smoke Restoration

10/1/2018 (Permalink)

The fire trucks may be gone but without proper immediate response, the real damage and the costs are just beginning. To return your residential or commercial property to its normal condition requires professional restoration. This is not the job for a do-it-yourself type of person.

For results you can have confidence in, hiring a certified restoration company would be your best bet. Restoration to a property can be complex. Proper smoke and odor removal are tasks that require technicians certified in these specific areas.

When selecting a certified restoration firm several factors must be considered:

  • Formal and up-to-date specialized training
  • Health and safety certifications
  • Experience in a wide range of restoration projects
  • Proof of proper insurance and licenses

In addition to removing residue, ridding your home of its smoky odor is necessary. Professionals use this four-step process to remove odors:

  • Remove the source of the odor, as possible, including unsalvageable debris that contributes to odor generation and recontamination of cleaned and deodorized areas.
  • Clean salvageable surfaces and items to physically remove odor-causing residue.
  • Chase remaining odor with an odor counteract act. In the case of smoke, create a deodorizing fog or gas that seeks out and combines with odor-causing substances.
  • Seal salvageable surfaces that are inaccessible or slightly scorched, not only for aesthetic purposes, but primarily to encapsulate odor and prevent progressive recontamination.

Understanding the effects of a fire can help homeowners evaluate the damage to their home. By learning more about residue clean-up and deodorization after a fire, you can minimize the need for costly repair. Fire and smoke restoration experts can help you return your home and furnishings to its normal condition. So I guess you could say it would be “Like it never even happened.”

My Clothes Were Damaged By Mold in a Rarely Used Closet…Can We Save Them? Mold Remediation Approved

10/1/2018 (Permalink)

Those of us who live in Central Florida and surrounding areas like Winter Garden, Windermere, Apopka, and Lake Buena Vista know that moisture in our homes is a common issue. We try to maintain a temperature with our AC units that we can live with, that our power bill can sustain (and therefore our pocket), and that will keep that moisture down. We might find some mildew from time to time and take care of it ourselves. Or perhaps you’ve had a mold issue and have called in a professional company to take care of it for you.

What about those closets that we don’t open often? Perhaps you open the closet door looking for those golf clubs that you are finally getting around to using. Or maybe you finally have an opportunity to wear that dress that you got on clearance. Unfortunately as soon as you open the door you notice that everything in the closet seems to be discolored. Upon closer inspection you notice that it smells musty and looks like it might be mold. What can you do?

On its web site, IICRC.org, the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning, Restoration, and Certification states the following:

Foremost, any garment or fabric that has not suffered physical deterioration or discoloration as a result of mold growing on it, and that is washable (typically, a minimum of 130ºF for at least 10 minutes), can be restored completely. That goes for bacterial contamination as well, as evidenced by hospitals daily as they wash linens, gowns, surgical drapes, etc.

Dry cleaning also does a good job when evaluated and cleaned - often twice - by a qualified professional. Again, this assumes no deterioration or discoloration of the garment. Ultimately, sampling and evaluation by a qualified environmental professional can be used to confirm remediation of the garment.

Our team of certified professionals here at SERVPRO are available to help you with this process anytime. Please give us a call and we would be happy to walk you through the process.

Lot's of Rain Can Lead to Mold

10/1/2018 (Permalink)

Mold can be lurking in hard to notice places. If you have a mold issue, SERVPRO will find it and resolve it.

We continue to have a lot of rain, with no end in sight! We hope all of you are doing well despite all of this water.  This is great for our lawns and for helping recover from our recent drought, but water is one of Mother Nature's most destructive forces!

While you may not see any signs of water damage at your home or office, you may still have water or mold issues that you cannot see.  Often times, mold and water damage can be hidden in places that are hard to see.

For example, a roof leak may only show a few drops on your ceiling, but it is actually spreading water around your attic or causing mold on your roof trusses.  A little bit of water that seeps under the garage door can seem like no big deal, but the water has actually gotten into the walls, soaked into the sheet rock, and/or damaged your baseboards.

These and other water related issues can lead to mold.  Sometimes you can see it, and sometimes you can't.  Either way, it is still a problem that needs to be dealt with.

If you, your co-workers or loved ones start having headaches, stuffed/runny noses or symptoms that feel like allergies but you haven't had allergies in the past then you may have water or mold issues.

The professionals at SERVPRO are thoroughly trained on mold remediation and removal.  We use state-of-the-art methods and machinery that is environmentally friendly and pet safe.  Regardless of the type of mold you encounter or the size of your mold problem, our team will handle it quickly and effectively.

Remember, our team of mold remediation professionals is available 24/7 365 to help. Why not get some piece of mind and let our team do a free visual mold inspection at your home or office?

Call today and get the peace of mind you deserve.

Mold is Everywhere, Even in the Cleanest Home or Office

10/1/2018 (Permalink)

Got Mold? You may not be sure, but our team of professionals will be! Call SERVPRO for a free visual mold inspection today!

It's that time of year, when it rains everyday!  Sometimes it is just passing showers and sometimes it is a tropical storm or hurricane!  There is still plenty of nice weather to enjoy, but as is typical in Central Florida, there will be quite a bit of rain mixed in!  

All that rain can lead to mold. Remember, mold needs moisture to grow and as long as that moisture is present mold will continue to grow.  That's why it is important to stop any water or mold you find as quickly as possible, before it spreads.

We often hear from customers that they did not think they had mold in their home of office since they keep their property clean.  While we highly recommend keeping your home or office clean, even the cleanest home or office can have a mold problem.

There are over 100,000 types of mold, most of which are harmless.  These mold spores are in the air, love humidity and water and are able to grow quite well in our local environment.  No matter how mush cleaning you do, mold is always around, and it is usually harmless.   

So, how do you tell if you have a mold issue and if the mold you see is harmless?  Simple, call the team at SERVPRO and let our trained professionals stop by and give you a free visual mold inspection?  It is a quick, easy, and FREE service that can help detect any issues you may have.

You may not have anything to worry about, and we hope you don't, but wouldn't it be nice to know?

Let SERVPRO Help You Resolve Your Insurance Claim

10/1/2018 (Permalink)

Worried about your insurance claim? Don't be! Our team of professionals can help you get your claim submitted quickly and properly.

After the shock of dealing with a disaster is over, the next thing that people think about is "How am I going to pay for this?".   That is a natural response and a great question given the high cost of repairing mold, flood, fire and/or trauma damage.  The good news is that our team of professionals can help eliminate that concern!

One of the things that sets SERVPRO apart from other restoration companies is the how well we work with your insurance company. Our team of professionals understand the insurance industry and how the claims process works.  We also know everything that needs to happen in order to get your claim submitted and your repairs covered.

As one of one the largest restoration and damage remediation companies in the country, we have worked with hundreds of insurance companies to get our customers claims processed quickly and fairly.  In fact, Insurance companies know that SERVPRO handles things properly and often recommend us to their policy holders.

So remember, if you have an issue with your home or office our team of trained professional are here to fix it 24/7 365 days a year! Not only is our staff trained to resolve your damage, we can help with your insurance claim too!

Keep an Updated Inventory of Your Home or Office.. Just in Case

10/1/2018 (Permalink)

Make sure you have a picture inventory of your belongings in the event of a loss. Without it you could lose a lot of money!

Tip of the week:


While you probably have homeowners or business insurance that covers the contents of your home or business if they are lost, you probably don't have pictures of the contents you own.

Make sure you keep an inventory of the contents of your home and office.  Hopefully you will never need it, but you will be glad to have it in the event of a problem!


Be sure to take pictures of each area of your home or business and the contents in them at least once a year. That way, if you do need to file an insurance claim you will have a record of everything you lost, the condition it was in, etc.

People are often surprised that if their property is lost, destroyed or stolen getting it replaced is not necessarily a straight-forward process with their insurance company if they don't have this picture inventory.

For example, if you were to lose a desk in a fire and don't have a picture inventory the amount you will be reimbursed could be a surprise.  Your $1000 mint condition 'classic' desk could get valued based on age and 'market-value', leaving you with a lot less money than you expected, and needed, to replace it.

Again, we hope you never need that list, but better safe than sorry.  Of course, if you ever need us for mold, fire, water or trauma/bio-hazard issues, we are here 24/7 365.

State of the Art Equipment for Water Damages

10/1/2018 (Permalink)

Fans New air movers were recently added to our inventory

SERVPRO knows that staying on the cutting edge of technology in our industry will help our customers the most. That's why we add new equipment to our inventory on a regular basis. We are proud to be able to offer the best to our customers. 

You may be wondering why this is important. Check out this information found on aboveboardchamber.com: 

Many homeowners feel that if the water is removed, the work of water damage cleanup is done. This is because it is difficult to see or feel the extent of the saturation of water in building materials without moisture detection equipment used in the water damage industry. What follows is that either the homeowner will attempt to remove the water and simply place household fans around, with or without removing drywall; or they will tell the water damage restoration contractor to leave when the water is extracted and before equipment is placed. The paradox here is that these decisions are made to save time and money. In some cases, they may have done just that. However, in most cases, the resulting long term water damage is both costly and time consuming in addition to being inconvenient and stressful. Added to that is the fact that the cost of mold remediation consequent of an improperly dried flood damage will likely not be covered by insurance policies because the water damage or sewage damage was not dried properly to begin with.

You have probably noticed by now that it is not the water removal service that is the important part of taking care of water damage. It is actually the drying part that makes your home safe from long term mold or building material damage. In fact, there is no time to waste when it comes to drying a water damaged home. Mold begins to start growing within 24 hours and continues “growing like a weed” damaging building materials as it spreads.

Water damage restoration companies spend a tremendous amount of money on drying equipment for a very good reason. They dry quickly, effectively, and safely. After all, think about it, if we could just use household fans and a couple of blowers, we would save a tremendous amount of money on equipment. If I thought those types of equipment did an effective job, I would be all over saving money by purchasing those at less than $50 each rather than a $300-400 blower and $3000 dehumidifiers. However, I know the importance of having industrial equipment to keep your home safe and dry. Further, all of the equipment works together to both dry the structural materials (blowers), remove the moisture from the air as the wet materials dry and the water from them turns to vapor (dehumidifiers), and clean the air to prevent allergens that permeate through the air during drying (air scrubbers).

What is all that water drying equipment?

10/1/2018 (Permalink)

You just called SERVPRO of West Orange. A disaster has struck you and your home or office. The crews from SERVPRO are on their way to mitigate the disaster. They show up in the big green trucks and in moments are assessing the damage to your property. Popping open the back of the truck they start to unload equipment, but what are they unloading? Why is it important? Here’s a list of the usual things you’ll see brought into a property once the team starts to work.

  • Air Mover and/or Axial Fan: Professional grade air movers and axial fans produce more air movement than a standard household fan. The higher volume of air being moved increases the rate of evaporation, helping to dry the structure as quickly as possible.
  • Dehumidifier: A dehumidifier removes water vapor from the air by condensing it out against refrigerated fins. The water is stored and then periodically purged from the machine by use of plastic tubing. The tubing will generally be run so that it dumps water down a drain, such as a bath tub or sink, or sometimes out a window or door. Professional dehumidifiers pull much more vapor from the air than a household dehumidifier. In this way they are generally more efficient.
  • Air Scrubber: An air scrubber might be used if your loss is a result of water classified as grey or black, which means that it came from a contaminated source or through building materials. These machines remove airborne particulates by trapping them in HEPA filters. Air Scrubbers are also used in cases where a customer has a health condition that requires the air quality be monitored.
  • Specialty Drying Equipment: There are a variety of different tools available to our technicians for use in specialty circumstances. For instance, a floor drying mat system allows the technician to create a vacuum system for removing moisture from hardwood floors, in order to try to dry them in place. This helps the floor dry faster, and generally gives us a better chance of saving the hardwood flooring.

There are of course many other tools you may well see if the situation requires them. The onsite SERVPRO technicians can and will explain any of the tools they use for the job. So when in doubt ask them!

Does Your West Orange Home Have A Mold Problem?

8/29/2018 (Permalink)

In Central Florida, mold can spread through a home in as little as 48 hours.

Microscopic mold spores naturally occur almost everywhere, both outdoors and indoors. This makes it impossible to remove all mold from a home or business. Therefore, mold remediation reduces the mold spore count back to its natural or baseline level. Some restoration businesses advertise “mold removal” and even guarantee to remove all mold, which is a fallacy. Consider the following mold facts:

  • Mold is present almost everywhere, indoors and outdoors.
  • Mold spores are microscopic and float along in the air and may enter your home through windows, doors, or AC/heating systems or even hitch a ride indoors on your clothing or a pet.
  • Mold spores thrive on moisture. Mold spores can quickly grow into colonies when exposed to water. These colonies may produce allergens and irritants.
  • Before mold remediation can begin, any sources of water or moisture must be addressed. Otherwise, the mold may return.
  • Mold often produces a strong, musty odor and can lead you to possible mold problem areas.
  • Even higher-than-normal indoor humidity can support mold growth. Keep indoor humidity below 45 percent.

Preparing Your Home or Business for a Hurricane

5/2/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO knows that when a disaster strikes the cleanup can be overwhelming. As the leader in water damage restoration, SERVPRO knows that fast mitigation is the key to limiting additional damage to your home or business, and in the case of a business, limiting business interruption. With over 1,500 franchises across the country, SERVPRO is faster to any size disaster and can be on-site within a few hours to reduce the amount of secondary damage that can be caused by allowing the water to sit. 

In the event of a hurricane here are some tips from FEMA to help you prepare 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 outdoor 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 as instructed by local authorities.

·         Turn off propane tanks

·         Ensure a water supply for sanitary purposes such as cleaning and flushing toilets. Fill the bathtub and other large containers with water.

Preparing your business is a litter different, but these tips from FEMA can help:

·         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 your business from a different location or from your home? Can you develop a relationship with other local businesses to use their facilities if a disaster makes your location unusable?

While we all hope for a year free from hurricanes, we know that they are inevitable at times. You can rest assured that SERVPRO of West Orange will be available to assist you with your home or business in the event of a natural disaster.

You Can Count on SERVPPRO for Storm Response!

5/2/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO is ready to help with any disaster - any time!

Hurricanes and severe storms are a common part of our life in the Central Florida area. From South Orlando, to Ocoee, to Apopka, our franchise is available for disasters of any size. Many times though, when disaster strikes, it is hard to determine what step to take first. SERVPRPO Industries has a Disaster Recovery team that can be called in to assist our neighbors after a major storm. Our franchise can call in reinforcements to make sure that all of our neighbors are assisted ASAP!    

How does it all work?

As a team, SERVPRO franchises and corporate staff work together to track storms that will affect our franchise areas. After the storm hits, as soon as it is safe for our crews to enter the damaged area, they are dispatched. Mobile command centers are set up and franchises are pulled from over 1,650 locations across the country to help, depending on the size of the disaster. Crews will work around the clock to get people back into their homes and businesses as soon as possible.

Dealing with the aftermath of a major storm is very stressful. We are happy to offer our services in order to relieve some of that stress!

Hurricane Preparedness In Central Florida

5/2/2018 (Permalink)

Use our hurricane preparedness list to make sure you are ready!

Every year we hear about hurricane preparedness. What you need to do to make sure you, your family, and your belongings are as safe as possible during a storm. Each year we make calls to family making sure they are ready in case of an emergency, and each year we add more things to our list of ideas and needs that can be utilized in case of an emergency at the home.

Let’s take a moment to discuss water. Anyone who has been through a disaster knows it’s importance. Day to day you need it, but what happens when the temperature goes up, there is no AC, and you are exposed to more prolonged sun light? Dehydration sets in faster and water may become a more important need than it does without those conditions. Did you know the water heater in your home may hold up to 40-60 gallons of water? Fresh drinking water. You can access this directly from your water heater and it may make the difference in an emergency. Of course, it is always best in the case of an imminent storm, to store ahead of time as much clean and flushable water as you can. If the water supply is contaminated it may take weeks before it is safe to use again.

What about food? In emergency situations you will need to learn to ration food for prolonged periods. Meaning non spoiling products should be stocked up on and kept on hand. Make sure you have a fuel source for a grill or cooking source so you can plow through all that meat and produce you have stored in the freezer before it’s gone. Save the canned items for later.

We will be available to help with the clean-up after the storm passes. Our office can be reached at 407-352-1569, 24/7/365. 

Any Home Can Have A Mold Problem

5/2/2018 (Permalink)

Mold is a pervasive problem. Over the years after looking at thousands of properties of various shapes, sizes, quality of construction and inherent problems, you would think that I would have found that better, and much more expensive, built homes would have an advantage when it comes to water intrusion and mold consequences.

The truth is that generally that is not the case, and more frustratingly for the Homeowner of these homes, many times the damages are much more expensive. In this blog I give as an example a very expensive home in an exclusive neighborhood in Windermere, FL that we were recently involved with. In this particular case, because of the high quality finishing materials being used in a Master Bathroom (granite & marble), the source of the water was well hidden (shower pan) as well as the extent of the damage.

As you can see the Bathroom had no signs that there was a problem until the Homeowner finally noticed a couple of wood planks on the floor cupping. Even this visual damage to the planks was delayed because the wood floor had been installed over a plywood subfloor and moisture barrier over the concrete slab. Again, very well done construction and installation. SERVPRO went out to take moisture readings with a hammer probe of the wood flooring, and more importantly, the plywood subfloor underneath it.

 This revealed that unfortunately the water had travelled much further under the plywood flooring than originally thought (wet plywood = mold). SERVPRO went ahead and presented a mold remediation estimate for the client based upon the few visible clues we had along with the moisture meters available. The problem the Homeowner and the Insurance Company had was that all the granite & marble was matching as well so there was an initial hope that this could be saved. Unfortunately, this was not the case.  The water, mold and demo that needed to eventually occur ended up being very extensive.

 While this was horrifying to the Homeowner, the other added unexpected surprise was signs of extensive termite damage. This was all found in the wood studs supporting the shower walls (behind drywall and granite). This termite damage had compromised the structural integrity of the extremely heavy granite supporting walls and a light soffit area above it. If this had not been found in a timely fashion, the possibility of structural collapse was possible.

 Fortunately for the Homeowner, all of this damage was taken care of by Homeowner’s Insurance. I need to remind you however, that this Bathroom was immaculate and well-constructed. This water intrusion, mold and termite infestation and damage had probably been going on for years. The only clue that this was happening was a couple of small wood planks near the shower that was cupping (maybe 6-8 square inches). It would have been easy for the Homeowner to just write-off this cupping as just water coming off of their feet when exiting the shower. Most people would.

 For those people that are reading this, who just happen to own Homes that would fit into the multi-million dollar mansion category, it is important to look at the small clues whenever possible. It is the nature of the expensive floor and wall coverings to be multi-layered and therefore makes it hard to find a problem that would normally be inexpensive to resolve if found quickly. There is no solution I offer to you in these types of situations except to always be wary and observant in your homes in any place where there is regularly running water and drains (Kitchens, Bathrooms, Utility Rooms, etc.).

*Photos for this Job are located in the Before and After section

Mold Remediation Steps

5/2/2018 (Permalink)

Have you ever wondered what happens when a mold removal specialist gets called to a mold-damaged facility?

Here are five steps that a mold removal specialist takes when conducting mold remediation: 

1. Determine the degree of contamination. To do so, a mold remediation specialist may need to bring in an Indoor Environmental Professional (IEP) to determine the extent of the mold damage and test for contamination within the facility. Because mold spores and other microscopic contaminants can travel easily throughout a building, the IEP may collect and analyze samples from affected and unaffected areas of the building. Once the IEP has finished the inspection, they will develop a remediation plan for the mold removal specialist with steps to return the home to its preloss condition. 

2. Set up and verify containment. To make sure mold contamination does not spread to other areas of a facility, the mold remediation specialist will set up containment by creating isolation barriers. Once the barriers are established, the specialist will verify containment with a lower partial pressure differential (negative pressure) to ensure there is no air leakage between containment zones. Exit chambers are used to serve as a transition between the containment and the unaffected area of the building. Once the containment is verified and the correct amount of pressure is achieved, the removal process can begin. 

3. Remove unsalvageable materials. Porous materials and items that cannot be restored or cleaned effectively must be carefully discarded. Unsalvageable items include, but are not limited to, drywall, insulation and other items with visible mold growth. It is important for the specialist to wear the appropriate personal protective equipment which may include a full face respirator equipped with a P100/OV cartridge, disposable coveralls and nitrile gloves.

4. Clean surfaces with a high-attention to detail. A mold remediation specialist will likely begin the cleaning process by thoroughly vacuuming the contaminated areas using a HEPA vacuum with a high-efficiency filter to catch mold spores. He or she will then begin a detailed cleaning process involving mold removal tools such as a HEPA filtered sander, followed by the damp wiping of surfaces with an effective cleaning solution.

5. Verify remediation. Once cleaning is complete, the IEP will return to verify the remediation was successful. The area must be returned to the dry standard and should be visually dust free with no malodors. In addition, an IEP may perform surface or air sampling as part of the verification that the area is back to normal fungal ecology.  

 “Mold remediation requires mold removal specialists to perform techniques that promote source removal rather than relying on chemicals, paints and coatings as a replacement,” said Rachel Adams, President of Indoor Environmental Management, Inc. “Understanding and managing air flow is also critical to the success of a mold remediation project. Working with qualified IEP can also help to reduce the liability for the technician as well as provide a final determination if the remediation was successful.”

Steps Involved in Removing Mold

5/2/2018 (Permalink)

Have you ever wondered what happens when a mold removal specialist gets called to a mold-damaged facility?

Here are five steps that a mold removal specialist takes when conducting mold remediation:

1. Determine the degree of contamination. To do so, a mold remediation specialist may need to bring in an Indoor Environmental Professional (IEP) to determine the extent of the mold damage and test for contamination within the facility. Because mold spores and other microscopic contaminants can travel easily throughout a building, the IEP may collect and analyze samples from affected and unaffected areas of the building. Once the IEP has finished the inspection, they will develop a remediation plan for the mold removal specialist with steps to return the home and/or business to its preloss condition.

2. Set up and verify containment. To make sure mold contamination does not spread to other areas of a facility, the mold remediation specialist will set up containment by creating isolation barriers. Once the barriers are established, the specialist will verify containment with a lower partial pressure differential (negative pressure) to ensure there is no air leakage between containment zones. Exit chambers are used to serve as a transition between the containment and the unaffected area of the building. Once the containment is verified and the correct amount of pressure is achieved, the removal process can begin.

3. Remove unsalvageable materials. Porous materials and items that cannot be restored or cleaned effectively must be carefully discarded. Unsalvageable items include, but are not limited to, drywall, insulation and other items with visible mold growth. It is important for the specialist to wear the appropriate personal protective equipment which may include a full face respirator equipped with a P100/OV cartridge, disposable coveralls and nitrile gloves.

4. Clean surfaces with a high-attention to detail. A mold remediation specialist will likely begin the cleaning process by thoroughly vacuuming the contaminated areas using a HEPA vacuum with a high-efficiency filter to catch mold spores. He or she will then begin a detailed cleaning process involving mold removal tools such as a HEPA filtered sander, followed by the damp wiping of surfaces with an effective cleaning solution. 5. Verify remediation. Once cleaning is complete, the IEP will return to verify the remediation was successful. The area must be returned to the dry standard and should be visually dust free with no malodors. In addition, an IEP may perform surface or air sampling as part of the verification that the area is back to normal fungal ecology.  

 “Mold remediation requires mold removal specialists to perform techniques that promote source removal rather than relying on chemicals, paints and coatings as a replacement,” said Rachel Adams, President of Indoor Environmental Management, Inc. “Understanding and managing air flow is also critical to the success of a mold remediation project. Working with qualified IEP can also help to reduce the liability for the technician as well as provide a final determination if the remediation was successful.”

Keeping Your Home Safe From Fire During The Holidays

5/2/2018 (Permalink)

The holiday season is upon us and the streets and houses are covered in color. As you drive around you can see homes and businesses strung with lights, wreathes hanging on doors and trees lit up in windows. If you decide to pick out a real tree this year, remember to keep some safety tips in mind. The American Red Cross lists these important facts and tips on their web site at www.redcross.org.

HOLIDAY HOME FIRES

Fast Facts

• Nearly 47,000 fires occur during the winter holidays claiming more than 500 lives, causing more than 2,200 injuries, and costing $554 million in property damage.**

• On average, one of every 22 home fires started by Christmas trees result in death.***

• Candle fires are four times as likely to occur during the winter holidays.**

• During the winter holiday season, an average of 40 home fires per day are caused by children playing.**

• The number of home fires the American Red Cross has responded to has risen 10% since 2000.*

• Having a working smoke alarm reduces one’s chances of dying in a fire by nearly half.**

Preparedness Tips:

Place Christmas trees, candles, and other holiday decorations at least three feet away from heat sources like fireplaces, portable heaters, radiators, heat vents and candles.

Purchase flame retardant metallic or artificial trees. If you purchase a real tree, make sure that it has fresh, green needles that aren’t easily broken. Keep live trees as moist as possible by giving them plenty of water.

Make sure that light strings and other holiday decorations are in good condition. Do not use anything with frayed electrical cords and always follow the manufacturer’s instructions.

Always unplug tree and holiday lights before leaving home or going to bed.

Never use lit candles to decorate a tree. Always extinguish candles before leaving the room or going to bed.

Use only sturdy tree stands designed not to tip over. Keep curious pets and children away from Christmas trees.

Keep anything that can catch on fire—pot holders, oven mitts, wooden utensils, paper or plastic bags, food packaging, and towels or curtains—away from your stove top.

Designate one person to walk around your home to make sure that all candles and smoking materials are properly extinguished after guests leave.

Smoke alarms save lives. Install a smoke alarm near your kitchen, on each level of your home, near sleeping areas, and inside and outside bedrooms if you sleep with doors closed. Use the test button to check it each month. Replace all batteries at least once a year.

Visit www.redcross.org/homefires for more information on how to keep your home fire safe during the holidays. Sources: American Red Cross,* U.S. Fire Administration,** and the National Fire Protection Association.*** 

We hope that everyone has a safe holiday season. If you have any fire or water damage issues please feel free to call us anytime, day or night. 

Have Smoke Odor? You Need An Ozone Generator!

5/2/2018 (Permalink)

Contributed By Marty Hoffman, Operations Manager

Ozone treatments are one of the best tools for removing odor caused by smoke damage. One question we get asked frequently is whether ozone treatments are bad for furniture and other possessions. I hope that this blog answers that question.

What is an ozone generator?

An ozone generator is a machine that generates the molecule ozone (O3), a highly reactive molecule that reacts chemically with the particles it comes into contact with. Professional restoration companies and some drycleaners use industrial ozone generators to remove the smoke odor from furniture, clothes and other belongings after a fire.

How does it work?

Ozone works to remove odors by chemically changing the structure of the molecules in the smoke that are creating the smell. The extra oxygen atom attaches itself to the other molecules to create a new molecule that is non-offensive—and non-smelly—in a process called oxidation. As a gas, ozone can clean anywhere air is allowed to flow. That’s one of the features that makes it so effective in removing odors that other cleaning techniques just can’t touch.

The more smoke damage has been done, the more ozone is needed to eliminate the smell. There need to be enough ozone molecules to react with all of the offending molecules in order for the treatment to be successful.

So, is it bad for my stuff?

Ozone is the most effective way to remove odor caused by smoke damage. Professional restoration contractors can control the temperature, humidity, and treatment time carefully for maximum positive effects. In short—no, ozone is not bad for your belongings, as long as it is being controlled by a professional. The reason this is important is because professional restorers know and understand the power of ozone. They also know that there are certain materials that don’t do well when exposed to ozone—namely certain textiles, leather, rubber, and certain plastics.

Many people think that they can clean their clothes after a fire by washing them multiple times. But this will not remove the smoke odor. Ozone is also cleaner than other methods because it does not leave any byproducts or residue that need to be cleaned later.

As a form of oxygen, ozone itself is not dangerous. However, if overexposure occurs it can be harmful to lungs. This is another reason to allow a professional to perform the ozone treatment. They have the right equipment in place to protect themselves during the process, and once your items are returned to you, they are safe to be in your home.

How to be Prepared for a Fire Loss in Your Home

5/2/2018 (Permalink)

Contributed by Marty Hoffman, Operations Manager

The hours, days and weeks following a fire or water damage in your home or business can be simply overwhelming. Surrounded by possessions that are soot-covered, flame-damaged or wet, it’s easy to lose sight of the big picture: As long as everyone got out safely everything else is just stuff. But once the smoke clears or the water recedes, you will need to deal with that stuff, and the sooner the better. It does not make things any better living in the Central Florida Areas such as Orlando, Winter Garden and even Windermere. 

From the beginning make sure that you are organized, amidst the chaos of your scorched surroundings.

Take notes on every conversation and online correspondence with your insurance company and restoration professionals, because in any stressful situation, miscommunication can happen. Save all receipts and original documents; only give photocopies upon request.

Your first call should be to your insurance agent/carrier. Not only is it required that you file your claim as soon as possible, it is also in your best interest. The sooner you start the process, the sooner an insurance adjustor will arrive at your door to begin assessing damage.

A reputable cleaning and restoration team should be next on your call list like SERVPRO of West Orange. If you can find one that also specializes in professional repair services, you’ll save yourself time, money and headaches. Depending upon the extent of damage, your property will may first need to be secured (boarded up, for example), and a high quality restoration team with carpentry skills can perform that service for you.

Your restoration team should work with your insurance company to initiate a fire damage recovery plan that includes the complete restoration of your structure. Again, if your team is truly “full service,” the construction side will assess the structural damages while the cleaning and restoration specialists will work closely with you and your adjustor to determine which of your possessions can be cleaned…and which need to be inventoried for replacement. Often these services can be provided on site, but in the event that your contents have to be removed, make sure your team also offers the capability to electronically inventory, package, transport and store your belongings in a safe, climate controlled facility.

Now that you know the initial steps of the fire damage recovery process, here are a few tips on what NOT to do before the pros arrive:

·         Do not wipe or attempt to wash fire residue from walls, ceilings, or other absorbent surfaces

·         Do not use carpeting or upholstered furniture impacted by heavy smoke residues or debris

·         Do not use food items, canned goods or medications exposed to heat

·         Do not turn on computers, televisions, stereos or electrical appliances until they have been professionally cleaned and checked

With preparation, resources and trusted professionals in place—plus a healthy dose of patience and perspective, after the fact—you and your family or co-workers will make it through the process of fire damage recovery.

Why Duct Cleaning is so Important

5/2/2018 (Permalink)

This photo shows HVAC duct work before it is cleaned of contaminants, and the clean duct work after the cleaning was completed.

We like to think that once or twice a year we do spring or fall cleaning at home at least we think that here in Orlando. We go through the house and clean what we see. But how do we go about cleaning what we don’t see? The air around us. Behind your walls is a maze of lines and vents that move air through our modern home. Often pulling air from the main parts of the house and some from outside. The air is circulated through an air handler, conditioned and pushed back into the home, or the office, or the school. With our busy lives how often do we really clean as much as we should? Have you ever woken up with a scratchy feeling in your throat? Have you ever suffered from allergies? Now stop and think about the air you breathe. What you don’t see is the dander, dust, dirt, and (if you have them) pet hair that is present. These particles are being moved through your structures through the vents.

The benefits of duct cleaning are simple and easy to see, even if the particles in the air are not. The first hits you in the chest. Cleaner air reduces allergies and illnesses that spring from constant contact with allergens. Particles in the air can be pulled into your HVAC up to seven times a day and circulated through the units. While dirty ducts don’t necessarily mean unhealthy air in your building, they may be contributing to larger health issues, could cause serious problems for people with respiratory health conditions, autoimmune disorders, or those with allergies.

Next it will hit you in the wallet. The US Department of energy states that up to 40% of energy used for heating and air is wasted. Think about it this way, a vent is just a pipe in your home. What happens when all that matter builds up in the vent? It’s not being pushed through the vents completely, so it’s staying inside them and clogging them up! Filters are inserted into your HVAC’s but normal usage still allows for buildup of blocking matter that causes that unit to run longer, and more often. This also may cause your HVAC unit to have a shorter life span.

The EPA suggests that regularly switching out your filters, regular maintenance, and making sure moisture doesn’t get into your HVAC are important steps you can regularly do at home on your own. No facts about air duct cleaning have been produced yet, but logic dictates that once dirt and debris gets in, it needs to come out. It gets circulated and builds up in the home, office, or school. It does effect air quality in the building and will cause your unit to run harder and longer to push the same amount of air as a clean unit does wasting your hard earned money.

We are here to help you with any and all of your duct cleaning needs.  

You Can Save Wet Documents

5/2/2018 (Permalink)

The SERVPRO Freeze Drying Chamber Can Help Save Your Documents

n our business, we generally encounter people with homes or businesses that are damaged by water. We spend our time drying these structures as quickly and efficiently as possible so that the owner can be back in them and functioning as normal as soon as possible. This includes drying of contents. Interestingly, when we discuss contents, people generally think of furniture, clothing, appliances, and electronics. But what about documents? What if the damaged business is a doctor’s office, hospital, or lawyer’s office? Saving the documents in those files could determine a patient’s wellbeing or the attorney’s ability to win a case. Once the paper is wet can it be saved?

There are many factors to be considered when we look at paper and its ability to be restored. Some things that we have to determine are based on the kind of paper it is, did the ink already smear, has the paper changed shape? If the paper is determined to be salvageable, we can attempt to dry it with a process known as Vacuum Freeze Drying.

Vacuum freeze drying is done in steps. The first step requires that the documents be frozen solid in order to maintain their original form. Then they are placed in a freeze drying chamber and a vacuum makes sure to remove all air from the chamber. When the temperature and pressure reach optimum levels the vapors begin to release from the paper. The vapor is then collected on a condensing surface outside of the chamber that turns it back into ice. A final gradual temperature rise pulls off more vapors and releases bound moisture from the document.

This technique works well on many types of documents. Rest assured, if your home or business should ever suffer a water damage, we can help recover your building and ALL of your salvageable contents!

Odors in Commercial Buildings Can Be Eliminated

5/2/2018 (Permalink)

WHAT IS THAT SMELL? WHERE IS THAT COMING FROM? IT'S IMPOSSIBLE TO WORK WITH THAT ODOR! Are you hearing things like that? Or maybe even seeing people new to your office turn up their nose when they walk in? You might have a foul odor and not even know about it. Mildew, mold, even a kitchen spill that might not have received the attention it needed-all of these things can make an office environment less than pleasant, even down-right dangerous to work in. 

Mildew is a version of microbial growth, much like mold, that can cause a host of issues to your employees and your customers. Does your assistant suffer from allergies? Do you have more than a few sick calls a week? Is your office filled with items to change the way the office smells? You might be suffering from a growth issue that SERVPRO can take care of.  

Kitchen odors, or break room odors as the case may be, can happen over time. Do you have appliances in your break room? A stove, refrigerator, dishwasher? In your home you may clean these area's with more frequency and attention that you might at the office. 

The second sense people use after sight is smell. It is part of that first impression that is related to your customers coming into your business. How does yours stand up? Give us a call today, and let us take a look at some potential problem areas for you.

Why You Need to Have Your Floors Commercially Cleaned

5/2/2018 (Permalink)

Thorough commercial carpet cleaning is the single best way to preserve and extend the life of carpet, but proper treatment requires careful planning and extensive training. It’s the kind of training that a professional would receive through an organization like the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC), and it is essential for a professional to integrate quality practices into their own firm. But how much goes into proper commercial carpet cleaning? It starts with keeping soil and debris from entering the building to begin with. By placing entry mats in entrance and high traffic areas and maintaining the walking surfaces outside of the building, there will be less soil to deal with inside the building. Inside, frequent vacuuming is the first line of defense, and may be needed daily in areas that receive a lot of traffic. Vacuuming ensures deposited soil does not penetrate deeply into the fibers and cause damage.

Spot and stain control is essential, even if the flooring is colored in a way to make stain detection difficult. Stains will degrade the integrity of the flooring and alter its texture, so professionals will have to respond quickly to any problem areas. Formulated detergents and targeted agitation will normally do the trick. Finally, deep treatment, usually through hot water extraction or encapsulation methods, will need to be done several times a year to remove soils that have become embedded in the carpet fibers. Regular office carpet cleaning is necessary for maintaining a professional, healthy atmosphere. No one likes to work in filth, and over time, the flooring will pick up a great deal of soil and debris. If it is not regularly removed, the flooring will deteriorate at an accelerated rate, harbor odors, and look unattractive and dirty. Fortunately, certified professionals can keep the flooring nearly soil free as long as they are brought in for a thorough treatment on a regular basis.

Commercial buildings withstand a great deal of foot traffic every day, and with the foot traffic comes soil, moisture, and other debris. With entry mats near the entrances and daily vacuuming, most of this soil can be kept from penetrating into the fibers. However, it isn’t a perfect solution, and deep office carpet cleaning will be needed before long. There are several treatment methods available for commercial buildings, but most textile manufacturers agree that hot water extraction is the most effective method. During hot water extraction, a combination of superheated water and detergent is injected deep into the carpeting and then extracted once it has a chance to suspend any soil.

Make sure that before hiring a professional, you select a company that is an IICRC Certified Firm. This will ensure that the technician sent to your office is also certified. Advanced treatment methods require expertise and proper training, and certification through a respectable organization will convey this. We would love the opportunity to give you an estimate for the cleaning of your office. With over 30 years of experience in the cleaning and restoration industry, we can offer assistance in almost any situation.

How Water Damage Claims Work

3/27/2018 (Permalink)

Lets set a scenario and say that you're in your home in Ocoee, FL and you've had a significant water damage at your home. Multiple rooms are flooded, there is water coming out of your light fixtures downstairs, and then only thing you've been able to do it turn the water to stop the leak. What do you do next? Who do you call? 

The good news is that you've turned off the water, so you have started the process of mitigating your loss. The following are some steps you can take to prevent secondary damage from occurring to your belongings while you wait for SERVPRO to arrive.

  • Call SERVPRO so that we can send a technician to your site immediately.
  • Contact your insurance company (if you haven't already) to report the loss and notify them that you have contacted SERVPRO and that we are in-route.
  • Begin removing excess water by mopping and blotting
  • Remove and prop up wet upholstery cushions for even drying
  • Place aluminum foil or wood blocks under furniture legs
  • Hang furs and leather goods separately at room temperature
  • Remove Oriental or other colored rugs from wet carpeting
  • Do not use a household vacuum to remove water
  • Do not turn on ceiling fixtures if the ceiling is wet, and keep out of areas where ceilings are sagging from retained water
  • Do not leave books, magazines, or other colored items on wet carpeting 

We our technicians arrive on site they will access the damages and being extracting water from porous surfaces. They will also place equipment and explain the drying process. If you have questions at any time during the process of drying your home or business, please call us! 

Why You Should Always Use A Professional Company For Carpet Cleaning

3/25/2018 (Permalink)

The following tips for finding a reputable company to help you with your carpet cleaning needs were found on IICRC.org, the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning, and Restoration Certification web site. SERVPRO of West Orange has many highly trained professionals that can assist you. Give us a call today!

“Cleaning Carpet Can Be a Dirty Business” “Not All Scum Is In the Carpet” “Don’t Let them Pull The Rug Out From Under You” “Clean Your Carpets Without Cleaning Out Your Wallet” “Don’t Get Taken To The Cleaners.”  These clever phrases have appeared recently in newspaper articles and televised news programs across the nation warning consumers about carpet cleaning scam operations. The media has related horror stories of trusting consumers who have responded to low-price carpet cleaning specials only to become victims of unethical cleaners who refuse to honor the advertised price, intimidate the consumers and do poor quality work.

Bait-and-switch operators are prevalent in many industries, and the carpet cleaning industry is no exception. This does not mean that all carpet cleaners are rip-off artists. How do you know who is and who is not? The professional carpet cleaning industry has cited these scam activities as a major industry concern and is taking action to help eliminate unprofessional workmanship and unethical tactics. One of the leaders in this campaign is the IICRC, an international, non-profit organization that certifies cleaners who meet prescribed levels of technical proficiency and pledge to operate by a Code of Ethics.

To help educate consumers so they will not become victims of fraudulent practices within the cleaning industry, the IICRC has released a list of guidelines to consider when selecting a carpet cleaner.

  • Price – If an advertised price sounds too good to be true – it is! Often carpet cleaners advertise a low price just to get their foot in the door. Use common sense; a low price usually equates to low quality for any product or service. Legitimate business people have expenses they must cover, including license, taxes, insurance, employee wages, and benefits, and quality tools of the trade. A professional carpet cleaner who must cover all of these business expenses and make a profit to stay in the business cannot afford to drive to your house for $5.95, much less clean a room of carpet when there.
  • Quality – Never should the price of cleaning services be the sole criterion for selecting a carpet cleaner. A price that sounds high may not be a signal of a rip-off. In all professions, quality work deserves a quality price.
  • Truth in Advertising – Read the fine print in advertised specials to find out exactly what the price includes, and request a firm price in writing before the work begins.
  • Training – Professional cleaning firms require management and employees to engage in formal training in a variety of cleaning disciplines, and these educational efforts will be ongoing.  Consumers should ask about the formal training background of technicians who will be cleaning their carpet.
  • Certification – Professional firms require technicians who have certification from organizations like the IICRC or through comparable franchise or independent training and testing organizations.
  • Experience – The years of experience a firm has, combined with formal training programs, contribute significantly to the experience and proficiency of its employees.
  • Knowledgeable – Professional firms employ and train technicians who have the ability to answer basic questions regarding carpet performance and maintenance, as well as spotting and cleaning.
  • References – Consumers should ask for references from previous customers, and they should consult friends and business acquaintances about the reputation of the cleaning firm they are considering. Do not hesitate to call the Chamber of Commerce and the Better Business Bureau.
  • Trade Associations – Professional cleaning firms are members of regional or national trade associations or other organizations that promote high ethical standards and continuing education. Look for trade association logos in advertising.
  • Credibility – Community involvement through the Chamber of Commerce and/or professional business, charitable or similar organizations will be undertaken by concerned, caring professionals. Look for logos indicating involvement in these organizations.
  • Method – Ask the cleaner which method of cleaning will be used and the advantages and disadvantages of this method compared to other methods.
  • Proof – Never hesitate to ask for proof. Ask to see the cleaner’s certification card, business license and insurance certificate.
  • No Pressure – Technicians must be courteous and willing to take the time to thoroughly explain the cleaning and to answer all questions. The consumer should never feel pressured.

There is no single criterion for selecting a carpet cleaning service. Several combined factors must be considered in the selection decision.

How Much Does Water Damage Restoration Cost?

3/25/2018 (Permalink)

When a customer has a water loss, they are often overcome with emotions. One of the biggest concerns is how much the loss or damage will cost. Typically we can't answer that question over the phone due to many unforeseen circumstances. This article found on home.costhelper.com/water-damage helps to shed some light on this difficult subject. Our team of professionals will be able to assist in restoration of any water damage, anytime, day or night. Give us a call today with any questions you might have. As always, coverage for a loss under an insurance claim would be determined by your insurance company's assigned adjuster.


Water or excess moisture can harm a home and its contents, and cleanup should be started as soon as possible.

Typical costs:

  • The cost of water damage restoration is based on several factors. These include the size of the affected area, the extent of the damage, the materials and water type. There are three categories -- the least expensive to clean up is category 1, which is clean water from a faucet or supply pipe. Category 2 is gray wastewater with minor contaminants, such as overflow from a dishwasher or washing machine. Category 3 is black water, containing sewage or other toxic debris.
  • Fixing a small area of water damage in a ceiling due to a leaky roof can be $100-$300 to patch the sheet rock, or $30-$50 for do-it-yourself materials -- not including the cost of fixing the roof and repainting the ceiling.
  • Drying a flooded basement can cost $500-$10,000 or more, depending on the size of the basement, the depth of the flooding and the water type (clean, gray wastewater or black/toxic). Depending on where the appliance is located in the house, cleaning up after a faulty water heater, washing machine, dishwasher or air conditioner averages about $5,000, according to HomeOwnerNet.com[1] .
  • Damage from a burst water pipe can cost $5,000-$70,000 or more with an average insurance claim costing $15,000.
  • If an entire house is flooded with storm water, the National Flood Insurance Program provides a flood damage simulator[2] to predict the total cost based on the height of the water. For 1-4 inches of water, the estimated cost is $7,800. For 9-12 inches, the estimate is$18,930. At 18 inches, the estimated cost is $26,285..
  • Water damage might be covered by insurance. Flood insurance typically covers damage from a natural disaster, when outside water or mud overflows an otherwise dry house. Homeowners insurance does not cover floods, but may cover water damage caused by minor individualized disasters, such as a hailstorm smashing a window or a broken water pipe spewing water -- as long as the problem wasn't caused by a lack of standard maintenance.

Why You Need A Professional For Smoke Remediation After A Fire

3/25/2018 (Permalink)

It can be confusing trying to deal with the damages from a fire at your home or business. The IICRC has provided the following helpful information on handling this. Due to the intricate measures needed to properly clean up after a fire loss, having a trained team of professionals will help alleviate some of the stress. Give us a call and we will send someone out to help.

When the firefighters leave, it may seem like the danger has passed and the home is safe from further destruction, but without professionals to help clean the smoke damage, the building will never return to normal. While the principles behind fire restoration are fairly simple, it requires a lot of experience and manpower to perform adequately, and this means that it shouldn’t be attempted by a homeowner on his or her own.

While fire is always the immediate danger, once it is gone, what it leaves behind will continue to affect the house
. Ash and smoke, if left unhindered, will cause extensive corrosion, etching and discoloration, not to mention lingering powerful odors. Professionals that clean fire and smoke damage can stop this before it becomes a major problem, assuming they are contacted soon enough. There are many companies out there that advertise their ability to restore areas affected by fire, but only those with proper training and certification should be considered. The Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) is the main oversight agency in this industry. The IICRC requires its registrants to take extensive coursework before earning their certification. This is a symbol of excellence, and those that uphold the standards that have been set can be contacted through the IICRC.

These professionals can clean smoke damage and restore items affected by a fire, but they must be brought to the site as soon as possible to halt the ongoing issues that ash residue can cause. The first thing that ash does to the home is discolor most surfaces. Anything that is made of plastic or was close to the fire will start discoloring within minutes, and within several hours, fiberglass and finishes on appliances will begin to yellow. Metals may also tarnish. After a few days pass, the ash will cause walls to discolor permanently, along with clothing and upholstery. Wood and vinyl will need to be refinished or replaced, and metal will start corroding.

If a professional isn’t hired to clean smoke and fire damage, the costs for restoration will skyrocket after a few weeks
. Metals may need to be replaced, carpet will permanently discolor and glass may be severely etched, which will necessitate replacement. It will also become apparent that the odors caused by the disaster may still be present and intense enough to be distracting. Because ash is acidic, the longer it takes to hire experts, the more destruction it will cause.

The first thing a trained, certified, professional company will do when on site is to identify all affected materials and the source of any odors. The only way to properly clean smoke and fire damage is to be extremely thorough. Ash residue is easily disturbed and can spread through the building with ease, causing nearly everything to need restoration. The experts will identify what can and cannot be salvaged, and will remove any built-up ash residue that is coating surfaces. Over time, ash builds up in layers, and may eventually form into a lacquer-like consistency. Once this is done, the restorers will locate the source of the odor, and treat it with specialized detergents that are formulated for neutralizing this kind of odor. Once materials are treated, they may be sealed off to prevent any further odor from permeating the air in the future.

This entire process is very detailed, and hiring a professional that can be trusted to do the job right is imperative
.

What Equipment Will Be Used for Water Damage Remediation?

3/25/2018 (Permalink)

When a water damage occurs many customers feel blindsided by the many steps involved in remedying the situation. The task of removing the water, drying out the home or business, and then putting things back into place can seem overwhelming in the initial moments of finding the loss. That’s where we can help. Our team of highly qualified technicians take great care in walking a customer through the steps necessary to dry and repair their property.

Many different types of equipment are utilized in the drying and restoration process. Here is a glimpse of what you can expect:

  • Air Mover and/or Axial Fan: Professional grade air movers and axial fans produce more air movement than a standard household fan. The higher volume of air being moved increases the rate of evaporation, helping to dry the structure as quickly as possible.

  • Dehumidifier: A dehumidifier removes water vapor from the air by condensing it out against refrigerated fins. The water is stored and then periodically purged from the machine by use of plastic tubing. The tubing will generally be run so that it dumps water down a drain, such as a bath tub or sink, or sometimes out a window or door. Professional dehumidifiers pull much more vapor from the air than a household dehumidifier. In this way they are generally more efficient.

  • Air Scrubber: An air scrubber might be used if your loss is a result of water classified as grey or black, which means that it came from a contaminated source or through building materials. These machines remove airborne particulates by trapping them in HEPA filters. Air Scrubbers are also used in cases where a customer has a health condition that requires the air quality be monitored.

  • Specialty Drying Equipment: There are a variety of different tools available to our technicians for use in specialty circumstances. For instance, a floor drying mat system allows the technician to create a vacuum system for removing moisture from hardwood floors, in order to try to dry them in place. This helps the floor dry faster, and generally gives us a better chance of saving the hardwood flooring.

Many customers are concerned about the cost of their power bill when they see the amount of equipment needed. This is an understandable concern. Your insurance adjuster can discuss how to handle this with you.

Keep Your HVAC System running Great!

2/21/2018 (Permalink)

Have you ever wondered as your AC unit kicks on, just what are some of the most common issues people have with their HVAC? You haven't? Well....Allow me to answer your now burning question. 

The List:

  • Dirty Air Filters. Air filters should be changed regularly. 
  • Clogged Drain Lines. 
  • Blown Fuses. 
  • Low Refrigerant. 
  • Dirty Condenser Coils. 
  • Electrical Problems. 
  • Frozen Evaporator Coil. 
  • Thermostat.

Briefly, let’s discuss how SERVPRO can solve some of these issues, and keep others from happening.

I'm sorry, but dirt happens. Not only that, dust is made up of dirt as well as pet dander and skin. Yes skin. We are constantly making our homes dusty. Regular dusting and cleaning helps cut down on a lot of that, but the air is full of small particles that are being pulled into your HVAC's and it starts with the filter. If you have dirty filters you are circulating dirty air into your vents. Your vents are connected to a maze of ducts in the home and office. This debris collects in spaces we normally can't get to. SERVPRO of West Orange and Apopka-Wekiva can help here. We offer a comprehensive cleaning team for your in home or in office duct systems. We will deed clean your system and seal it to protect from fast buildup of debris. The HVAC air handler is pulled apart and cleaned piece by piece. 

This simple solution can save you from possibly needing to deal with the rest of that list. It can also improve air quality in your home or office. Feel free to give us a call today for an estimate!

Always Use a Professional to Clean Your Upholestry

2/21/2018 (Permalink)

Professional upholstery cleaning services are much more effective than do-it-yourself options or treatment performed by untrained personnel. That’s because certified professionals know how to use the latest equipment and practices to great effect, removing even the most stubborn soils deeply embedded in the fabric. Homeowners often ignore the need for furniture cleaning, but if it is not performed regularly, families may have to get rid of their favorite sofa or chair long before it is necessary.

The Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) teaches technicians the best way to approach upholstery cleaning services in any setting. They know how to identify and clean every type of fabric, including delicate fabrics like silk and leather.

In general, the process is the same no matter what kind of furniture the technician is working with, though it still requires a great deal of precision and effort. The fabric is first vacuumed to get rid of all dry, loose soils. This ensures they are not matted during water application. Pretreatment sprays are then applied and help break down stubborn soils like body oil and liquid stains. The technician will then apply a combination of water and cleaning agents, either by scrubbing or with a special wand tool. The furniture is rinsed lightly and excess water is extracted before the fabric is allowed to dry.

This form of treatment reaches all layers of the fabric and can greatly extend the furniture’s life. For that reason, it should be considered an investment in the furniture. SERVPRO of Apopka/Wekiva is proud to have fully IICRC trained technicians on staff to help you with your upholstery cleaning needs. Feel free to give us a call for a quote today!

Do I Have Bats? How Can I Remove Them?

2/21/2018 (Permalink)

Contributed by Michael Johnson. Production Manager

Bats. Bats are the only flying mammal and like to have a private space away from predators and bad weather. Where is a good Place? You’re Attic of Course! Here is a list that may be helpful in determining if you have an issue at your property with bats:

·         Are there a large number of bats outside the building? 

·         Has anyone heard scratching or squeaking noises from walls, the chimney, or attic?

·         Are there unexplained stains on walls and ceilings?

·         Are there rub marks on the outside of the building around areas with holes or cracks? 

Bats can carry different diseases that can harm humans in many ways. Rabies being one of the illness. The other is Histoplasmosis. The Mayo Clinic defines it as:

An infection caused by breathing in spores of a fungus often found in bird and bat droppings. Histoplasmosis is most commonly transmitted when these spores become airborne, often during cleanup or demolition projects.

As a side effect of bats living in a home, mold can start to grow in the bat droppings

There is a specialized remediation process to remove the bat droppings from the attic space and dispose of them. SERVPRO Is highly trained in the remediation process for buildings and homes affected by bat infestations. We have completed everything from single family homes to major hotels.

During the removal process all materials that have come in contact with the bat droppings would have to be removed and disposed of under state regulations for bio Hazardous waste. The Items include:

Drywall, insulation, cloth materials, cardboard and wood (depending on the saturation of droppings)

If you have any concerns or think you may have had an infestation of bats, Please call us for an inspection.

Hurricane IRMA-Destruction in Central Florida

11/3/2017 (Permalink)

Hurricane Irma swept through Central Florida causing devastation on many levels. We were fortunate enough to not have the maximum amount of damage forecasted, but that doesn’t mean that the damage wasn’t enough to hurt.

As a restoration company, we received THOUSANDS of phone calls. In general, people know that they need to call a company like ours for help after a natural disaster like Irma. We actually received some phone calls before the storm hit, because people understood the need to be prepared. With everything going on, there are some things that go unnoticed, and as I write this, I find the need to share those things. They are important because they truly show the spirit of our company.

Before the storm hit we had a plan in place that would allow us to help as many people as possible, as fast as possible. We are a 24/7 service company for emergency service, but typically, after 5:00 in the evening and until 8:00 in the morning, we have our calls answered by a service. That way we can allow our staff time to sleep! We knew though, that we needed to have someone on staff answering the phones once the storm hit, because they would be the best ones to answer questions, offer some hope, and get people in line for service. We had two employees that agreed to do this. They tirelessly answered calls for days.

Because we are part of a national system of franchises, SERVPRO corporate called in the cavalry to assist the local franchises. Once each local office was at their limit, we could easily dispatch out one of our sister franchises. That allowed us to get someone out as soon as possible, instead of having to turn people away or wait for weeks for service. There were franchises from all over the country that came in to help, many of them even came directly from helping in Texas after Harvey.

From a business standpoint, right after a storm is a time for restoration companies to make money. What I found interesting though, was that instead of sending people out to try to secure the biggest jobs, Scott Tracy, the owner of our franchise, was busy making sure that the employee’s families were safe. He even went out and bought additional generators for those families to use so that they wouldn’t have to be without power at their home. He was busy with trying to take care of those around him.

Our office was without power for 9 days. We serviced as many people as possible by working from our General Manager’s home. Her kitchen table was turned into a mobile office. We could do almost everything we needed to in order to help our customers and get the information to our production team that they needed.

These things all add up to one big picture, our franchise is led by a team of people who CARE, not just about the bottom line of the business, but about the community and their staff. When the next storm hits, remember that a company that cares about their employees will care more about their customers too. SERVPRO is always here to help make it “Like it never even happened.”

What to Look for After the Storm is Long Gone

11/3/2017 (Permalink)

It’s been weeks since we had our brush with Hurricane Irma in Central Florida. How did your home do? Did you have minimal damage? Some missing shingles? Maybe some slight water intrusion from windows? Did you think that you had it all cleaned up but now you are starting to smell something funny? Here are a few things to look for that will help you decided if you have an area that needs to be investigated further by a professional.

  • Musty smell-many people report this after there has been a water intrusion in their home or business. If it goes away in a couple days, then it probably isn’t a big issue. If you notice that the smell lingers, and is even a bit stronger in a specific area, this would be a cause for further investigation.
  • Water marks that seem to have come out of nowhere. This could be a sign that the area you thought was dry, is actually still wet. Modern building materials can hold water in them for longer periods of time, making it harder to find right away.
  • Bulging floors, buckling floors, “squishy” floors, these are all signs of a water intrusion issue. Many times, when your floor is showing those signs, there will be other areas affected also.
  • Drywall that is crumbling or bulging. This can be a sign that the drywall was wet at one point, or still is, and that it needs to be checked further.

These are three simple things, but added together they can be a sign that there might be mold growth or even some areas that need proper drying. If you’ve noticed that your home or business is being affected by these or similar things, feel free to give us a call to discuss them. Our team is available to answer questions for you or schedule an inspection. You can reach us at 407-352-1569. 

Central Florida, Did you know that August is Mold Awareness month?

7/17/2017 (Permalink)

These days it seems like there is an awareness month for just about anything. The month of August, for example celebrates this list of things also:

  • Admit You’re Happy Month
  • Family Fun Month
  • National Catfish Month
  • National Eye Exam Month
  • National Golf Month
  • Peach Month
  • Romance Awareness Month
  • Water Quality Month
  • National Picnic Month

With all of these other things to celebrate or be aware of, why is mold awareness so important and who in the world thought it was important enough to need an entire month of attention each year?

Let’s start with “The Who”-The Responsible Solutions to Mold Coalition (RSMC) is responsible for declaring August Mold Awareness month each year. RSMC is a consortium of associations, companies, government and academic organizations dedicated to communicating accurate, science-based information on controlling mold. The group was launched at the International Builders’ Show in Orlando, FL in January of 2006. 

“The Why”- “Our message is simple: if you control moisture, you’ll control mold,” said Frank Nunes, Vice Chairman of the organization and Executive Director of the International Institute for Lath and Plaster. “By declaring August ‘Mold Awareness Month,’ we want everyone with an interest in construction and remodeling to know that they can keep moisture out and therefore prevent the onset of mold primarily through attention to detail during the design, construction and remodeling process.” 

The RSMC has a very informative web site, http://www.responsiblemoldsolutions.org. This web site is set up to so that you can access a residential or commercial building with an interactive model. By clicking on the model you can find relevant principles that will help you keep moisture out of that specific area.

For more detailed information on this topic, check out the full article about Mold Awareness Month and the RSMC at http://www.randrmagonline.com/articles/84551-responsible-solutions-to-mold-coalition-declares-august-mold-awareness-month

How a Water Restoration Technician Assists After Disaster

1/31/2017 (Permalink)

A water restoration technician has an extremely important job when a home is affected by excess moisture. Certified professionals in the industry can quickly reverse the extensive damage that a flood or sewage backflow can cause, and save as many items as possible in the process. And when dealing with contaminated water, especially when it has pooled in the home, only certified professionals should be allowed to manage the cleanup. Attempting to perform cleanup efforts without expert assistance can lead to injury or illness, both of which can be severe.

A certified water restoration technician is on call around the clock. When an entire community has been affected a major disaster we can call in multiple teams to assist. As soon as a professional is on site, they will assess the situation and determine what items need immediate rescuing. If water has pooled in areas around the home, then pumps will be used to remove it.

The home will be dried using a configuration of heavy duty air movers and dehumidifiers, and while it dries, the firm will move through the building and look for any evidence of mold or pathogen contamination. If pathogens or mold are present, they will be eliminated using special procedures. This will ensure the home is safe to return to, and with concerted drying efforts, the building will as good as new once professionals have completed their work.

What to do when you have a sewage leak!

1/31/2017 (Permalink)

It’s late at night. The rain has been coming down for what seems like hours. Your toilet is flushed as lightning splits the sky, and suddenly you have sewage backing up in your home, onto your carpet, under your floors. This is not a dream….This is a NIGHTMARE! This is actually a reality for some. Half awake, dealing with an emergency what are you going to do? What can we salvage? What is safe to touch? First thing is first, sewage can be very dangerous. The most common negative factor in sewage is hepatitis B. This little thing can remain outside a living body for up to 50 days and cause a host of health issues. So the cleaning of your home or office must be done right, and done fast.

There are many items that can be cleaned by a professional from a sewage loss. Here is a Short list of what cannot be saved:

Some Electronics – Depending on the type and how far the contamination went down into the item will come into play. You cannot wipe off just the outside and say it is good to go. If sewage comes in contact with a power cord or a small transfer box it should be replaced. If the item is not replaced the contamination will fester inside and could cause a major fire hazard. This is a very serious issue that should be handled by a professional.

Soft Goods/Certain Textiles – Some can be cleaned depending on the material make, age and contamination level. Certain items like pillows or stuffed animals will need to be dissembled, filling removed, exterior cleaned and put back together with clean materials.

Engineered Wood/ Press wood - Any wood item that has been modified where contamination has come in contact with an unfinished surface cannot be cleaned. This is due to the many cavities that pressboard and engineered wood have. Natural/Solid wood can be treated and sanded to remove the affected areas, then re-stained to match existing colors.

Carpet/Pad – If at any time there was sewage that soaked through to the carpet or pad, the area must be removed! There is no way to guarantee that the carpet and pad are fully decontaminated.

If there are any questions, Please call your local SERVPRO and we will help.

Red Cross and SERVPRO working together to serve the Central Florida Community

1/27/2017 (Permalink)

The fire fighters have just walked out of your home. It's past midnight. Your family is safe. You followed the two minute evacuation plan. But, as you look onto where you and your family once slept, played, ate and lived, now you see a soot covered, smoldering structure that will need serious repair. What do you do now? Who do you call to help you get your home back to normal? And then, when you do call someone, what happens next? Where will you and your family go? It's usually right about this time that an American Red Cross representative that the fire fighters contacted for you puts a blanket over your shoulders and tells you, It'll be okay, we are here for you. If you have never had this happen to you consider yourself lucky. If you have, you know what I'm about to talk about here.

For those that haven't and have never given to the Red Cross or thought to have helped out in some way let me tell you a little about them. May 21s 1881 Clara Barton started what is now the American Red Cross. It was modeled after the Swiss version of The Red Cross. It was bread out of the Civil War. After World War 2 they started the first civilian blood donation outfit.

Today they provide these services:

  • People affected by disasters in America
  • Support for members of the military and their families
  • Blood collection, processing and distribution
  • Health and safety education and training
  • International relief and development

 

And they do it all by donation and volunteer work.

 

https://www.redcross.org/donate/modf

Water Damage can severely affect the health of your Orlando business

1/27/2017 (Permalink)

Businesses throughout the Orlando area are constantly effected by the environments around them. The elements can wreak havoc on the interior of businesses under the best circumstances. Plumbing malfunctions, damage to the structure, or the risk of fire can put a dent in your business plans for the day and cost you a lot of money. Then there are the lingering hazards that now can grow from these damages.

 

Let’s talk about carpet. Standing water and carpets just do not mix. The fabric can be destroyed, it can accelerate the growth of mold and fungi and it can trap hazards within the fibers as the water evaporates or recedes. If carpets are left untreated you may have to replace all the carpet, and not to mention what it will do to the floor below. Water in the floor, depending on the type of floor can warp, weaken, or allow for a collapse to occur more frequently.

 

Water in or on walls can knock sections of the building out of commission. If water happens to settle in the walls it will damage the fibers of the wall and create a breeding ground for microbial growth. Mold and fungi love warm, dark, wet environments to breed in. Opening up the walls and getting a dehumidifier near the areas to help dry the water keeps the problem from spreading.

 

Furniture and chairs are usually multi problem areas. Desks often made of wood soak up water. Desks are usually covered in papers and important items which water often destroys if left untreated. SERVPRO can salvage your papers using a freeze dry method of extracting water. Placing fans and dehumidifiers near water soaked desks can keep you from replacing them. Desk chairs which are often fiber based exterior with soft cushion material inside soak up water and anything in the water. Again all these normal office pieces of furniture can be salvaged if time and skill are used to the utmost.

 

Keep in mind, time plus water equals money. The longer you wait, the longer the water soaks in and does damage, the more it costs you in the end.

Post storm tips and hints

1/6/2017 (Permalink)

Here in central Florida we are used to preparing for storms. These reminders should help you and your family prepare for the next one that comes our way. You don’t want to be left out in the heat and unprepared for surviving if a large storm or disaster does affect you.

Water: As stated in previous blog posts, a traditional standing water heater holds up to 40 gallons of clean water. If the water to your home isn’t flowing this is a great last resort. However, if there is water going into the home, make sure you check with county sites to find out if you are under a boil water alert or not. Make sure you have 1 gallon of water per person for up to one week stored before the storm hits.

Food: Canned food and none perishable foods like beans, canned vegetables, and soups are good to have around. If you have a small gas cooking device you’ll want to empty out your freezer as fast as possible of any frozen foods so make sure to cook through your perishable foods before your canned foods.

Gas and fuel: Make sure you have a full tank of gasoline in all of your vehicles. Fuel might become limited during an emergency situation. So you’ll want to make sure you are topped off before the storm hits. As for fuel oil this goes for gasoline for generators, propane for cooking, and lamp oil if you plan to use gas lamps for a lightning source.

Outside of these basic items there are an assortment of other items  you may want to keep handy such as:

*hand cranking can opener

*First aid kit

*Cooler for perishable foods

*duct tape and garbage bags

*Flashlight and batteries

This short list of items can keep you prepared for the aftermath of an emergency. It’s recommended each year you check off an emergency disaster check-list to insure your stocks are full before a disaster happens.

10 Reasons to have your Carpet Cleaned

1/6/2017 (Permalink)

We found the following information on cleanlink.com and felt that it was very valuable to our customers. It gives 10 very compelling reasons to have your carpet cleaned. 

As the weather warms and people head outdoors, it is important that custodial departments don't lose sight of what needs to be done inside. There are many reasons why carpets should not be neglected. Doug Berjer product manager for CFR, manufacturers of recycling portable carpet extractors, offers these top ten reasons to have carpets cleaned year round. 

  1. Prolongs the life of carpeting. Regular carpet cleaning using the extraction method can increase the life of carpets significantly, protecting your floor-covering investment.
  2. Protects indoor air quality. Carpets trap airborne pollutants; however, eventually those pollutants must be removed in order to protect the carpet and maintain indoor air quality.
  3. Makes carpets easier to maintain. Most carpet soiling is made up of dry soils; when carpets are kept thoroughly cleaned on a regular basis, most dry soils can be removed with regular vacuuming.
  4. Removes spots and stains. As with other soils, spots and stains can attract more soiling. Removing them promptly protects carpeting from damage.
  5. Prevents buildup of allergens and bacteria. Moist soiling of carpets can result in the buildup of several unhealthy contaminants.
  6. Enhances the appearance of any room. Clean, well-maintained carpets speak volumes about the overall cleanliness of a home or facility.
  7. Improves worker morale. Workers feel better about their work environment when it is clean. This includes the carpeting.
  8. Makes carpeting look and feel clean and fresh.
  9. Removes dust mites and bedbugs that may have found a home in carpets.
  10. Maintains the carpet’s warranty. Most carpet warranties require that carpets be cleaned using the extraction method within a specific amount of time, usually every 12 to 18 months.

Central Florida Home and Business Storm Prep

1/3/2017 (Permalink)

Being told that you have a major storm coming your way is hard enough, but now you have to figure out the best way to try and keep both your residential or commercial building from any sort of damage or loss. Our team has a saying, “you can never plan for a storm, but you can plan to be ready for it.” Let’s say that there is going to be a storm tomorrow. Are you prepared for whatever may happen? If your answer is no, then it is better that you don’t wait until you hear that the hurricane or thunderstorm of the century is coming, because by then it may be too late. Here are some things to make sure you check off of your checklist for your home:

  • Remove any branches or trees adjacent to your building that could potentially fall and damage it.
  • Sandbag any area that is subject to flooding
  • Relocate any valuable or fragile possessions
  • Secure all utilities including water heaters, gas tanks, and heaters and if necessary, raise them to higher locations to avoid water damage
  • Invest in and install shutters or plywood in order to protect windows and doors from wind-born debris
  • Have the roof of your building or home evaluated to ensure it can withstand a storm
  • Turn off propane tanks
  • Ensure a water supply for sanitary purposes such as cleaning and flushing toilets. Fill the bathtub and other large containers with water.
  •  

Preparing your business is a little different, but these tips can help:

  • 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 your business from a different location or from your home? Can you develop a relationship with other local businesses to use their facilities if a disaster makes your location unusable?

We know that storms and the damage that comes with them are inevitable at times. You can rest assured that SERVPRO of Apopka/Wekiva will be available to assist you with your home or business in the event of any size disaster.

Central Florida Office Disaster Recovery Plan

1/3/2017 (Permalink)

It’s 2:45am on a Sunday morning. You get a call that there is an emergency in your office. The caller tells you that there was a small fire and that the sprinkler system put it out, but that the entire building is now damaged from the water. What will your next step be?

Do you have a plan of action? What if there was a way for you to start making the important phoe calls before you even leave your house? What if there was something as simple as an app on your phone or tablet that would allow you to access all of the information that you need? That’s where our ERP comes in! ERP stands for Emergency Ready Profile or Emergency Ready Plan, and allows you to have a plan for any emergencies that may happen in your commercial building.  The ERP has everything and anything you want to have in your preparedness plan, from the location of the main power shut off switch all the way to where the blue prints are located. Having a plan of action allows anyone from the owner of the building to the custodians working the nightshift to be able to possibly prevent additional damages from occurring, while stopping the main source of damage from spreading. The best part is you can access this ERP directly from your smartphone or tablet by simply installing the free SERVPRO Ready App. The app can be downloaded on as many devices as you deem necessary.

You may ask, “How will it benefit me and my business?” Not many business owners/managers know that about 50% of businesses are unable to reopen following a disaster. Of the businesses that do survive, the overwhelmingly majority of them had a preparedness plan in place. Pre-planning can serve as an insurance policy aimed at peace of mind. And, knowing you are “Ready for whatever happens” speaks trust to your employees. Showing that in the event your business is affected by a disaster, they don’t necessarily have to be.

By working with SERVPRO and allowing us to provide your business with an Emergency Ready Plan, your business can receive the benefit of over 30 years of experience in reducing the impact of any natural or man-made disaster. Our teams are leaders in water and fire damage response and can help you quickly get your business back in working order.

The Emergency Ready Plan Advantages:

  • 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.     But it will save a lot of time if ever needed.
    •    -It will only take a little time to complete and will not take you away from current projects.
  • A guide to help you get back into your building following a disaster.   of action.
    •    -This can help minimize the amount of time your business is inactive by having an immediate plan
  • Identification of the line of command for authorizing work to begin.   money.
    •    -This saves time so we can begin the work of mitigating the damage which can save you time and
  • Provides facility details such as shut-off valve locations, priority areas and priority contact information.  In advance of an emergency so that during the emergency you are “Ready for whatever happens.”
  •    -Having a quick reference of what to do, how to do it and who to call provides solutions in

You found the perfect home for the perfect price or a perfect fixer-upper

5/6/2016 (Permalink)

You find out after moving in or Buying the Home that it use to be an Illegal drug manufacturing home aka a meth house. A meth house can be any type of home from the $2 million mansion, trailer, typical suburban home, or even a retail store Bathroom.

Here are some signs that the home may have been involved in illegal drug activity.

Equipment left on Property:

  • Scuba Tanks

  • Camping Stoves

  • Propane Tanks

Trash Left on Property:

  • Rags With Red And yellow stains

  • Coffee Filters With Red Stains

  • Rubber Hoses

  • Empty Bottles of Automotive Fluids

  • Empty Blister Packs of OTC medication

Heavy Smells of:

  • Fertilizers

  • Rotten Eggs

  • Gas

  • Ammonia

The Exterior Of the home:

  • Boarded Up Windows/Blacked Out Windows

  • Burned Grass

What makes the home toxic is the absorption off the chemicals used in the cooking process. All the drywall, wood, ceiling and any appliances have absorbed the chemicals that were cooked into them. After the cooking process is done the toxins will release from any porous materials in the home

1 Pound of Cooked Meth Will make 5 Pounds of poisonous waste. When purchasing a home that may be questionable, an Industrial Hygienist can be called in to check for any potential health hazards present.

SERVPRO can take the process from beginning to end and return a healthy home to you and your family.

What items are salvageable from blood contamination

5/6/2016 (Permalink)

It happens, someone we know has been involved in a gun, knife or other sharp item incident. Whether it happens to be a kitchen accident or an accidental discharge on a fire arm, SERVPRO knows how to handle any situation.

There are many items that can be cleaned by a professional that had previous blood contamination. Here is a short list of what cannot be saved:

Some Electronics – Depending on the type and how far the contamination went down into the item will come into play. You cannot wipe off just the outside and say it is good to go. If blood falls between the vents of the item there is a chance it could land on a circuit board and cause a short at minimum or Cause a fire. This is a very serious issue that should be handled by a professional.

Soft Goods/Certain Textiles – Some can be cleaned depending on the material make, age and contamination level. Certain items like pillows or stuffed animals will need to be dissembled, filling removed, exterior cleaned and put back together with clean materials.

Engineered Wood/ Press wood - Any wood item that has been modified where contamination has come in contact with an unfinished surface cannot be cleaned. This is due to the many cavities that pressboard and engineered wood have. Natural/Solid wood can be treated and sanded to remove the affected areas, then re-stained to match existing colors.

Carpet/Pad – If at any time there is blood contamination that has soaked through to the carpet or pad the area must be removed! There is no way to guarantee that the carpet and pad are fully decontaminated.

If there are any questions, Please call your local SERVPRO and we will help.

What Items Can I Save After A Sewage Back-Up?

5/3/2016 (Permalink)

Contributed by Michael Johnson, Production Manager

What items are salvageable from Sewage Back up?

A sewage loss in your home can be detrimental. There are many items in the home that should be discarded. In the world of water damage we call a sewage loss a Category 3. This type of water damage is very dangerous if not cleaned up correctly. The list of contaminates in a sewage back-up is long. One of them is Hepatitis B. Hep B can live out of the body for 50 days. This is why the cleaning process is so important.

There are many items that can be cleaned by a professional from a sewage loss. Here is a Short list of what cannot be saved:

Some Electronics – Depending on the type and how far the contamination went down into the item will come into play. You cannot wipe off just the outside and say it is good to go. If sewage comes in contact with a power cord or a small transfer box it should be replaced. If the item is not replaced the contamination will fester inside and could cause a major fire hazard. This is a very serious issue that should be handled by a professional.

Soft Goods/Certain Textiles – Some can be cleaned depending on the material make, age and contamination level. Certain items like pillows or stuffed animals will need to be dissembled, filling removed, exterior cleaned and put back together with clean materials.

Engineered Wood/ Press wood - Any wood item that has been modified where contamination has come in contact with an unfinished surface cannot be cleaned. This is due to the many cavities that pressboard and engineered wood have. Natural/Solid wood can be treated and sanded to remove the affected areas, then re-stained to match existing colors.

Carpet/Pad – If at any time there was sewage that soaked through to the carpet or pad, the area must be removed! There is no way to guarantee that the carpet and pad are fully decontaminated.

If there are any questions, Please call your local SERVPRO and we will help.

Bad Things Happen When You Go Easy in Performance Reviews

5/2/2016 (Permalink)

Contributed by Shannon Perez, General Manager

Here is some guidance on how to conduct Performance Reviews that I really appreciated.  The article was found on HRMorning.com and is written by Christian Schappel.  This is very useful information, especially for those of us who have long-time employees and might be afraid of hurting someone’s feelings.  Read on and hope you gain as much as I have from this article.  

Bad Things Happen When You Go Easy in Performance Reviews:

Oh, goodie! It’s performance review time,” said no manager … ever. And as a result of this lack of enthusiasm, managers can screw them up — royally. Thankfully, we just found something very handy to help them avoid screw-ups.

Our good friends over at ResourcefulManager (we’ve told you about them before) recently put together an interesting presentation worth showing to your managers. It outlines the very bad — and often expensive — things that can happen when managers sugarcoat employee performance reviews.

Specifically, the presentation names ways — besides getting sued — in which easygoing reviews can cost you dearly (they start around slide 35 below).

The presentation below outlines what a sugarcoated review looks like, why it’s harmful, as well as the benefits of telling employees the honest truth (again, it goes beyond simply avoiding the courtroom).

Don’t let the slide count fool you, the presentation moves quickly. Managers will only need to dedicate about three minutes to it for them to understand the ramifications of going easy on under-performing employees.

How to have a difficult conversation

Of course, the problem stems from managers dreading uncomfortable conversations with employees.

Naturally, no employee wants to hear he stinks, and no manager wants to tell him he stinks. But it must be done.

By sticking to some do’s and don’ts managers can eliminate some of the awkwardness, take control of the conversation and achieve their objective — a substantial change in an employee’s performance or behavior.

Here’s a checklist we prepared that’s worth passing along to you managers:

Do’s:

§  Do be specific about what you want. The mistake some managers make when shooting for a goal is using general terms.
Example: A manager says, “You’re too laid-back. I want you to be more aggressive and proactive.” Nice, safe terms, but the employee ends up thinking, “What’s that mean?”
Instead, the manager could say, “I want you to call five ex-customers a week, find out why they left us and report back to me on what they said.” That establishes clear goals.

§  Do let the employee rant — a little. Some people feel the need to blow off steam or maybe mount a defense, even a flimsy one, for their behavior. That’s OK. You don’t want them to feel like they’re on the witness stand and can’t ramble a little. If they think the point of the conversation is just so you can cross-examine them, that’ll just give them an excuse to throw up their defenses and refuse to cooperate. So let them go on for a while, and then steer the conversation back to the point.

§  Do use “we.” Try to get the idea across that the issue is a problem for everyone involved. That often requires saying something as simple as, “We have a problem” or “We need to change.”
Then the person on the other side of the desk realizes the behavior is important and affects everyone – but without finger-pointing. In other words, focus on the problem, not the person.
Bad example: “You’re too argumentative.”
Better: “The continual arguments are hurting our productivity.”

Don’t’s:

§  Don’t continually use “you.” Putting all the responsibility on the employee is a conversational black hole that’s almost impossible to escape from. The use of “you” — as in “You didn’t finish the job on time” — is an invitation to a fight. Contrast that with: “We need to talk about why the job wasn’t finished on time.”
No accusations, no blame. Just a conversation starter that works.
Let’s admit here that at some point you are going to have to use “you”; after all, we are talking about a specific person causing a specific problem. Just be aware that there are alternatives to continually using “you” in a negative way that kills the conversation.

§  Don’t use “however” or “but.” Some managers think if they lead with a compliment, it’s then easier to wade slowly into the problem. A symptom of that thinking comes out in conversations that go something like: “You’ve done a pretty good job, but …” and then the manager lowers the boom on the employee.
People aren’t fooled by that approach, and in fact, it often gets them angry and thinking, “She can never just say something positive.”
Consider substituting “and” for “but” and “however.” You’ll see how much smoother and positive the conversation can be.
Example: “You’ve done a pretty good job, and we need to talk about how to get back up to that level.”

§  Don’t feel as if you have to fill every silence. In an especially tense situation, you’ll be tempted to fill in every silent pause. Stay silent when there’s a lull in the conversation, and obligate the other person to fill in the silence. You’ll be surprised by the amount of information you get without even asking a question.

A HIGH-PERFORMANCE TEAM – Hiring successful marketing and salespeople is a science

5/2/2016 (Permalink)

Contributed by Shannon Perez, General Manager. 

This is something we have been struggling with for years.  I found this article just recently posted on Cleanfax.com (the article is by Tim Miller, President of Business Development Associates, Inc.) and printed it to have close by as we are building and improving our marketing and sales team.  I want to post this so that others can also benefit from this information.  This is our goal, a statement included in the conclusion of this article we are posting to the front:  Like most other business activities, failing to prepare is preparing to fail.

A HIGH-PERFORMANCE TEAMHiring successful marketing and salespeople is a science

More and more restorers are seeking to build an outside sales team in order to generate day-to-day leads that are not from programs, weather or luck.  They do this by calling on agents, adjusters, plumbers, property and facility managers, etc.  This is entrepreneurial activity at its best. If the work you need isn’t coming to you, go out and hunt for it!

Unfortunately, most owners of restoration companies have little, if any, direct selling or sales management experience. It’s no wonder that building a high performance-team of salespeople (marketing reps) is such a challenge.

Many have tried and have given up. They have been burned too many times by the salespeople who interview like superstars, who provide the “We are almost there; the big one is just around the corner” happy talk, month after month, until the deal suddenly vaporizes through “It’s not my fault.”

The key to any successful sales program is the right salesperson. But there are other very important factors to consider without which even the best salespeople will struggle to be successful.

These include how your salespeople will differentiate your company from the hundreds of competitors calling on the same targets, creating a unique value proposition so their sales team has something to offer — specific sales processes with accountability, coaching and sales management, just to mention some of the most important.

Still, the heart of any sales program (and a restorer’s ability to drive the growth of his or her own business) rests on its ability to hire qualified salespeople.

The good news is that hiring successful salespeople is a science more than it is an art. In our experience, there are four crucial elements for success. These are desire, commitment, responsibility and outlook.

Let’s analyze all four.

1. Desire

Desire is extremely important because it tells us how badly the candidate wants to succeed in sales. People without the passion or desire for greater success in sales are not people you want driving the growth of your business!

2. Commitment

Commitment means doing whatever it takes to succeed. Commitment is strongly related to terms like persistence, tenacity, perseverance… and even faith. Building a referral network takes a lot of work and a fair amount of time before substantial results are obtained. For these reasons, you need salespeople with as close to full, unconditional commitment as you can get.

3. Responsibility

The ability to take personal responsibility for success or failure is a hallmark of great salespeople. When salespeople make excuses, they’re actually selling themselves short.

Regardless of the excuses they make, it comes down to the fact that they aren’t taking full responsibility for their results. It’s like that old saying: The first step in correcting a problem is admitting that you have one. Until salespeople take full responsibility, they aren’t likely to make any changes that would improve their effectiveness.

4. Outlook

Outlook tells you how people feel about themselves, the work they do, whom they work for and whom they work with. It is similar to attitude. When people are between jobs, it’s not uncommon for them to have outlook issues because they are going through a difficult time. The goal is to determine whether or not the outlook problem is a temporary or chronic one before inviting them onto your team.

When selecting salespeople, you want as much of the four crucial elements for success as possible in their make-up.

But you also want to consider to what extent they have the five major weaknesses, which are need for approval, emotional discipline, supportive beliefs, supportive buy-cycle and ability to handle rejection.

Let’s analyze all five.

Need for approval

Salespeople that have a strong need for approval often feel being liked or getting the love and approval of a prospect may be more important than getting a meeting or the business.

Salespeople with this issue hurt you in that they can’t close or ask for the business. They can’t ask the hard questions. They can’t confront respectfully and are allergic to the word “no.” This leads to “happy ears” and a pipeline full of phony deals, chasing deals that are long dead and people that waste your most precious commodity — their time and the company’s time.

Emotional discipline

This is a very common weakness. Salespeople with this issue have a tendency to panic when they get thrown a curve ball or an objection. This panic is essentially the salesperson talking to themselves — thinking, strategizing, worrying and panicking in the middle of a sales call.

When this happens, they are focused on the voices in their own head rather than listening to the prospect.

Supportive beliefs

This means that the way a salesperson thinks will actually support their selling outcome. When those beliefs are non-supportive, they will sabotage their selling outcomes. So they question whether their beliefs are positive, supportive or damaging, such as:

•I am terrible at prospecting on the telephone.

•Nobody wants to talk to me anyway.

•I can’t dislodge incumbent vendors.

•I don’t like making cold calls.

•My list stinks.

•I can’t call on owners.

Supportive buy-cycle

This is one of the most important weaknesses in that candidates with a non-supportive buy-cycle are typically comfortable with prospects that don’t make decisions. Because of the way they make major purchases themselves, they “understand” the need for endless research, checking out the competition, “thinking it over” and fundamentally not making decisions.

Good salespeople understand that “Yes is OK,” and “No is OK,” but the “maybes” are the productivity killers. Good salespeople are able to help prospects make decisions instead of accepting put-offs, stalls and objections.

Handle rejection

There is no selling without rejection. In today’s world, there is a lot more passive rejection in which people simply don’t return your calls or emails and this can affect a lot of salespeople in a serious way. The key is not whether they get rejected or fear rejection but, rather, how long it takes them to recover when they do get rejected. The ideal salesperson is rejection-proof or at least rejection-resilient.

The hiring process

It is critical to understand whether or not your candidates have enough of the four crucial elements for success and the right amount and combination of the five major weaknesses as well as a host of other characteristics.

The only way to do that is with a screening tool designed specifically for consultative salespeople that looks at the concrete, job-specific skills, competencies and capabilities, which we really need to understand about a salesperson’s abilities.

A sales assessment tool is the first hurdle that any job candidate must overcome to even start the interviewing process. Simply put, if they don’t pass the initial assessment, there is no point wasting time interviewing them!

The rest of the hiring process consists first of a brief phone screening designed to put the candidate under the same sorts of pressure that they would face in real-life selling situations. This quickly sorts out the real salespeople from the estimated 70 percent of salespeople who are terrible, who go from one failure to the next during their entire careers.

The next step is a face-to-face interview. Again, this is a pressure test designed to determine whether the accomplishments and experience on their resume reflect real life or fantasy. Putting the salesperson through their paces with role plays and asking them the hard questions most interviewers balk at again reveals the skill and quality of the candidate.

If the candidate gets past the first live interview, they are now among what is typically a very small group of people you would be willing to hire. The next interview is much more traditional in nature. The pressure is off; you are warm and welcoming, and this is where you paint the picture of the opportunity for the right salesperson at your company.

Ideally, you will have a pool of two of three finalists to choose from. The last interview is their opportunity to make their case as to why they are the right fit.

Getting results

When we hire salespeople using this process, we are highly confident that the salesperson can do the job. But this doesn’t necessarily mean they will do the job. No matter how stringent the process, you can’t anticipate failing marriages, personal crises, drug and alcohol dependencies and the occasional sociopathic liar who can beat the system.

But what is more common and perhaps more disappointing is when good salespeople who are hired and then fail because they were not given the proper sales processes and training required to be successful, not given a tracking and accountability system (CRM), not coached and definitely not properly managed in order to clearly understand what they had to do in order to achieve success.

Like most other business activities, failing to prepare is preparing to fail.

Tim Miller is the President of Business Development Associates Inc., a marketing strategy, recruiting and sales force development training company. BDA helps restorers drive the growth of their businesses by building referral networks so that they are not overly dependent on program work, weather or good luck. To learn more and to receive a free assessment of your marketing rep or estimator/project manager, contact Miller at (847)386-6556, or email him at Info@theBDAway.com.

2015 Employee Appreciation Dinner

3/30/2016 (Permalink)

Our candy bar from our Employee Appreciation Party this year

3/30/2016

In January of 2016 we hosted an appreciation dinner for our employees and their families. This event is held yearly, as we feel it is important to show just how much they mean to us.

Without this team and their families we would not be able to help so many in our community when disaster strikes their home or business. Many of our technicians spend countless hours away from their families in order to help others on a regular basis.

This year's event was catered by Apple Spice Junction and was held at the Lakeside Reception Hall in Orlando. We had a DJ and a photo booth, and based on the photos and the dancing we'd say they were enjoyed by all!

Thank you again to our amazing staff for all that you do year round!!

Did You Know There is a PROPER Way to Vacuum?

3/29/2016 (Permalink)

Most people have just enough time to run the vacuum over their traffic areas before company arrives. But did you know that there is a proper way to vacuum and that it will also affect the lifespan of your carpet? The following tips from the Carpet & Rug Institue are very helpful. For more information on carpet care, please visit their web site at www.carpet-rug.org

Vacuuming 101

Proper vacuuming is the easiest and most effective way to keep your carpet clean. Regular vacuuming can also have the largest impact on the air you breathe.

To get the most out of your vacuuming regime, remember these few easy tips:

  • A quick once-over doesn’t do much. Slow and steady does the trick.
  • When vacuuming, don’t ignore those corners and crevices where dust builds.
  • “Top-down” cleaning saves you the step of vacuuming again after dusting. Dust blinds, windowsills, and furniture surfaces first and then vacuum away any fallen dust.
  • Remember to replace or empty vacuum bags when they are half to two-thirds full.

How Often Should You Vacuum?

As a rule of thumb, you should vacuum at least once a week with a quality vacuum cleaner. However, the more foot traffic over your carpet, the more you need to vacuum. The general formula is:

  • Vacuum daily in high-traffic or pet areas.
  • Vacuum twice weekly in medium-traffic areas.
  • Vacuum weekly in light-traffic areas, using attachments at carpet edges.

Don't Have Time To Keep Your House As Clean As You Want? Try This!!

3/29/2016 (Permalink)

Cleaning Schedule showing Daily, Weekly, and Monthly Chores to help keep your house clean without constantly cleaning

Most of us have very busy lives. Family life has changed so much in the last 20-30 years that it’s almost unrecognizable to an older generation. Gone are the days where a mother would stay at home and take care of her house and her family while her husband went to work and provided for the family’s financial needs. Most households now have both spouses working to provide financially for the family.

With the ever growing demand to get from place to place and to have our days constantly filled, how do you handle the chores at your house? We found this helpful chart on Pinterest. By breaking down normal household chores into daily, weekly, and monthly items, we found that it helps to make sure everything is accomplished without making anyone feel overwhelmed. Try it out and let us know what you think!

To print out your own copy of this chart, visit http://thriftydiydiva.com/free-cleaning-schedule-printable-daily-weekly-monthly/

Spot Cleaning Tips from The Pros

3/22/2016 (Permalink)

·         Wax-We’ve all had it happen. Our favorite candle overflows and wax gets all over our furniture. Or, in my case, my cat knocked over a wax warmer and the wax spilled down the wall and onto the carpet. With this tip we will help you get the wax out. If the wax is colored, chances are that no amount of cleaning will rid you of the new colored area. For hard surfaces, such as tables or countertops (or your wall), allow the wax to cool completely and harden. Then it can be easily scrapped off of the surface and thrown away or re-melted (if you’d like to attempt it again). Removing the wax from your carpet it a bit trickier. You’ll want to grab your iron and a white towel. Turn the iron on to the lowest setting (most carpet is made of synthetic fibers, so this step is VERY important). Then fold your white towel in half and place it over the wax. With even pressure and a steady movement, apply the iron to the top of the towel. This will cause the wax to begin to melt and then transfer to the towel. Again, any stain from the color of the wax will stay on both surfaces. If you choose to try to treat the color issue, we recommend that you contact our office so that we can use professional products on the stain. The products sold over the counter have brighteners in them which can cause bleaching where they were used when you have your carpets cleaned next.

·         Red Wine- First-BLOT, don’t rub! You can also try to use the towel & iron method on this type of stain if it is a fresh stain. It should pull SOME of the color out. Red wine contains natural dyes, which are cleaned differently than synthetic dyes like you would find in most wax. Once you’ve tried that, if you still need to extract more color, contact our office. We have special cleaning techniques that may allow for greater success when used as soon as possible.

·         Blood- In the case of a major clean up job, it’s always best to call in the professionals. Sometimes though, you might have a couple of small drops of blood on your carpet. You can get a cup of ICE water. It is important that the water be as cold as possible. Then pour a little water on each spot. You’ll probably notice that the blood will pool up in the water. Once you’ve covered the spots in ice water, you can go back and BLOT the spots up. This trick usually works very well.

·         Paint- Well, there’s not much you can do in this case except for a very HEAVY rinse. The area will need to be saturated and then extracted. This is the type of stain you want to keep wet with a wet towel until our technicians can get to your location. They will then use the truck-mounted extraction system to extract as much paint as possible. Once the paint is extracted a good cleaning will help make sure your carpet doesn’t get that crunchy feeling.

Some important things to keep in mind: Stains are all going to be in one of two categories, natural or synthetic. Knowing which category your stain fits into will help you and your SERVPRO professionals determine the best course of action in handling your issue. 

Daily Organization and Tips

2/19/2016 (Permalink)

Note from Shannon Perez, General Manager

Productivity-we all want it and crave it.  Where is it?  Why can’t we get more of it?  Well, this article gives simple suggestions for how we might achieve it.  I am a mother, a career woman, a wife, daughter, friend, etc and my day is so full like many others.  Prioritizing is so very important.  This article seems almost too simple, but sometimes we forget the simple things and really over complicate life. What if we were not to apply these simple suggestions?  Well, I have been there and done that…..We get interrupted so many times in a day with other “crisis”, a phone call, an email…it all takes precedence at that moment.  Go back to the list is what I say.  Otherwise, we are not accomplishing productivity or even getting things done.  We end up just moving things from one side of our desk to another.  We have to stick to the some of the basics, especially those of us in management.  People count on us.  If we are not organized, we will live in total chaos and we cannot help others. 

Daily Habits of Successful People: It’s All About Routine

By Brian Tracy

The most successful people all have certain habits in their daily routines.

They help contribute to their success and can be considered good habits to form. It could be something simple like, setting a goal to, “Do good each day,” like Benjamin Franklin did.

It could also be something more elaborate such as spending most of your morning in bed like Winston Churchill. Churchill would wake up at 7:30am daily, eat breakfast, read his mail and newspaper until 11am.

My Favorite Habits of Millionaires:

Habits of Millionaires vary, but I am going to share one of my favorite daily habits of successful people with you. It is something that I use every day and has contributed greatly to my success.

It is the habit of making a list before the day begins.

Let me tell you below why it is so important…

Here are the 3 steps to planning and making your daily list.

1. Plan Your Day The Night Before

Every minute spent in planning saves 10 minutes in execution. Sit down with a piece of paper and write down everything that you need to do the coming day. If for any reason you don’t do this, it should be the first thing you do every morning. When you write a list you have a track to run on.

Writing a list clarifies your thinking and goals…

Writing down a list forces you to think at a higher level…

If you start working from a list you increase you output 25% each day.

One of the habits of millionaires is that they start their day working from a list.

2. Set Priorities On Your List Before You Start the Day

Work from the 80/20 rule. If you have 10 items on your list of things to do, two will be the more important than all of the other items put together.

Go down your list and answer the question, “If I were to be called out of town for a month, what are the most important tasks that I must accomplish?”

Last fall I was out of the country traveling across 15 countries in 36 days. When I looked at my list of things to do before I left, I had to get my most important tasks done.

Once you identify these most important tasks, it brings us to the final step in starting your day.

3. Complete the Most Important Task First

Begin immediately on your most important task and focus on it and only it until completion.

All success in life comes from project completion and living a life of good habits will help you complete more projects.

A project with multiple tasks is called a “multi-task job”. This means that there are several smaller jobs to complete the larger job. Organize your jobs by sequence in a checklist and start on you most important project.

Complete the smaller jobs in your project, until the entire project is complete. This process is called “single handling” and it’s one of the most powerful things that you can use in managing your time. You can increase your productivity by 50% by planning, starting and completing your most important tasks every single day.

Conclusion

If you can develop these habits of successful people and do those three things, plan your day the night before, organize your tasks in order of importance, and complete your most important task first thing during your day, you will increase your productivity overnight.

Why Listening to People is Important

2/8/2016 (Permalink)

Note from Shannon Perez, GM with SERVPRO of West Orange and Apopka/Wekiva:  There are a number of articles that really mean a lot to me.  Usually they have to do with people skills, relationships and employee appreciation.  Listening is so important in every relationship and it just isn’t utilized enough.  We all want to be heard and sometimes we are so busy talking that we don’t take the time to HEAR others.  This is definitely not a natural tendency of most and so it must be cultivated.  That is why I am posting this article.  It is one of the things I am passionate about and always try to apply in my daily life.  Let’s just say that this is a work-in-process but I will never stop trying to make sure I listen and hear others because it shows others that you really care about them.  Our employees are awesome and I want them to feel that way.  We love our customers and I want them to know that by truly listening to what matters to THEM.  Enjoy the reading. The following article is from 2014, but still offers so much value!

LISTENING IS A LEADER’S MOST IMPORTANT SKILL

Tuesday, July 15, 2014 - by  John Keyser  

LISTENING SKILLS

A friend of mine, a key leader with a major insurance company, regularly comes around her desk when one of her team members comes to speak with her. She feels that sitting side by side, rather than across a desk, leads to a better discussion. Why? Because she is putting that person at ease, she is conveying that she genuinely cares about him, and she is listening intently to what he has to say.

Another friend, a high level executive with a leading company in the sports industry, has made listening a priority. He tunes in to the person speaking with an open mind—without problem solving or seeking conclusions—while that person is speaking. It has been noticed and admired numerous times, not only by his immediate team members, but also by his senior executive colleagues.

Another example of active listening by leaders comes from Peter Hill, CEO of Billy Casper Golf, the leading company in golf management. Hill says, “When I am speaking, I’m not learning.” Indeed, more and more leaders are recognizing how essential listening skills are today.

Why now? Why are people striving to improve their listening skills? Because the quality of our listening determines the quality of our influence, and that brings huge benefits to our business.

Consider the statistic that some 40 percent of people in the workforce today do not feel appreciated and valued, and 70 percent are either actively looking for a new job or would very likely accept an offer if it came their way. Clearly, now is the time to reach out to our people in meaningful ways.

Email has become the easy and quick way to communicate, share info, make requests and answer questions. Yet, there is a dark side to the endless flow of emails coming at us. First, depending on how disciplined we are at managing emails, each of us may have 100 to 300 emails to read, delete, respond to, or act on each day. More disturbing is the fact that, to a great extent, emails have replaced conversations. 

We simply do not make the time to connect with and maintain solid relationships with people, as we should. We are on the go from the time we wake up until we turn off our bedside lamp. We’re too busy—way too busy.

This situation can and must be remedied by those of us who deeply care about our teams and our team members’ success. We must stop spending so much time in meetings, speaking with other senior execs, and in front of our computers. Instead, we must let the people doing the work of our companies know that we appreciate and value them and want to know their ideas. More important, we must listen attentively, with a quiet mind and a full focus, not thinking what we’ll say, not problem solving in our minds, or even partially thinking of our own to-do list.

On average, we retain just 25 percent of what we hear, which is because of our business and lack of listening skills. The good news is that we can learn to be a better listener and significantly increase our retention. There are principles and practices that can help us be intentional, purposeful, and conscientious when listening and that will make a huge difference with the spirit of our team members.

To earn and maintain quality relationships, our people need to know we genuinely care about them. By listening with an empathetic ear, by putting ourselves in their shoes, and by maintaining an open mind, we develop a culture of enthusiastic and energetic teamwork. Our conscious listening, which is listening to understand and learn, is our gift to others.

Be assured, the journey of improving our ability to quiet our minds, to focus on the other person, and to become a fully present listener, will significantly improve our effectiveness as a leader.

HOMEOWNERS INSURANCE……something important to know!

2/3/2016 (Permalink)

Contributed by Scott Tracy

Over the years I have found something that concerns me greatly.

As many of you may already know, it is not unusual here in Central Florida areas like Winter Garden, Winter Springs, Altamonte and Orlando that a water damage/flood that occurs in a home usually involves some mold growth as a consequence. If mold is found, it falls under a special separate category of coverage named Fungi (you can find this if you read your homeowners policy).

The good news is that most insurance carriers in the state of Florida automatically include at least $10,000 in coverage for mold as part of their policy. I will warn you however, even $10,000 may not be adequate for a loss involving a lot of mold that also affects the contents in the home. Please consider calling your insurance agent to up this coverage just in case. Personally, I increased my coverage to $20,000 for my home.

Having said that, not all insurance companies in the state of Florida automatically give you $10,000 in mold coverage.  This is one glaring weakness you need to know about. To be fair to insurance agents, when you apply for coverage with them, they ask you if you want this fungi/mold coverage and it is up to the consumer to accept and decline this. Many consumers do decline this coverage not knowing how important it really is.

Over many years, I visited many claims where the homeowner has had water and mold damage and their insurance carrier was a company that did not automatically include this coverage. When mold is found, I urge the homeowner to call their agent to see if they have the fungi coverage. I would say that 90% of these homeowners find out that they do not have the coverage. This means the homeowner is paying a lot of money out of their own pocket to get the mold remediation done. This is bad enough, but the real anger and frustration occurs when the policyholder finds out that nearly all the other insurance carriers in Florida automatically extend to their policyholder’s the $10,000 in fungi coverage. This really upsets them. Even though it is not the insurance agents fault, they take the brunt of the homeowner’s anger and frustration.

Needless to say, the point of this discussion is to highly encourage all homeowners to call their agent as soon as possible to check on their fungi coverage and to add this coverage to their policy if they do not have it.

Together We Rise

12/23/2015 (Permalink)

Our team showing off the completed bags

Our team recently had the privilege of participating in a charity called Together We Rise. This national charity helps teams across the country prepare and donate items to help children in foster care. 

We were teamed up with a foster agency in our local community for this event. Together We Rise sent us the items needed to prepare 12 bags to be donated. When children go into foster care they are usually given plastic bags, if anything, to put their belongings in. Together We Rise helps teams put together duffel bags containing a teddy bear, a blanket, a coloring book and crayons, and a hygiene kit. 

Our team decorated each bag so that the child that receives it will have something special. Then the bags are stuffed with the items provided. We of course added some SERVPRO swag for our special kids!

When the bags were complete we delivered them to the foster care agency. They were so thankful for the bags and filled us in on what they encounter on a daily basis. We were informed that they were going to be receiving a new child to their program that day, and that child would be the first to receive one of our special bags. 

What an honor it was to be able to bring some happiness to a child who is otherwise having their world turned upside down.  

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