Recent Posts

Hire a Mold Inspector First

1/6/2022 (Permalink)

Hire a Mold Inspector First

If you find mold growing on drywall, trim, or unfinished wood surfaces, and especially if the affected area is more than 10 square feet, hire a mold investigator to discover the root and extent of the problem. They’ll also be able to direct you to a reliable mold remediation company. Reputable companies work with third-party inspectors instead of doing the inspection themselves. 

But be sure to check credentials when hiring an inspector. The mold industry is largely unregulated, but there are guidelines to help you know when you’re hiring a true professional

Expect to spend $200 to $600 for a site visit from a qualified inspector, which will take 2 to 5 hours. The inspector will take air samples and may open up walls to find mold.

https://www.houselogic.com/organize-maintain/home-maintenance-tips/how-eliminate-mold-your-home/

SERVPRO of South Arlington is here for all of your restoration needs.

Inspect and protect your property

12/13/2021 (Permalink)

Once the catastrophe has passed and you’ve checked in with friends and family, the next step is to call your insurance agent to report any property damage.

If it is safe to do so, protect your property from further damage by making small emergency repairs to your home before an insurance adjuster sees it. This could include boarding up windows, putting a tarp on the roof and salvaging  undamaged items.

If possible, keep damaged items or portions of these items until the claim adjuster has visited your home. Consider photographing or videotaping the damage to provide further documentation to support your claim.

FEMA may also provide assistance after some disasters.

https://www.farmers.com/catastrophe/wildfire-defense/

SERVPRO of South Arlington is here 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year for all of your restoration needs

Create a “defensible space”

12/6/2021 (Permalink)

The “home ignition zone” encompasses the house itself and everything up to 100 to 200 feet around it. Radiant heat from a severe wildfire can ignite a house from up to 100 feet away, and if there’s enough combustible material in the way, the flames themselves can quickly travel that distance. So if you happen to live in a wildfire-prone area, safeguarding just your home and the five feet surrounding it leaves significant risk on the table.

The area between 30 and 100 feet of a home is a property’s front-line defense against a wildfire. The principle guiding your preparation in this zone should be to create a “defensible space” that can prevent flames from approaching your home, and give firefighters a safe place to combat the blaze. Cal Fire and NFPA have great resources that outline the creation of a defensible space. For instance, once you remove fuel sources from the area immediately surrounding the house, the area between 30 and 100 feet out should be maintained as a “reduced fuel zone.” In this zone, plants should be spaced out, low-hanging tree branches should be pruned, and all vegetation should be watered regularly.

Steinberg notes that some homeowners go overboard when creating a defensible space by clearing the area surrounding their home of all vegetation. It seems counterintuitive, but well-spaced plant life can actually block wind-blown embers from reaching your home. A defensible space completely devoid of vegetation creates a “bowling alley” for embers.

https://www.sierraclub.org/sierra/5-ways-protect-your-home-wildfires

SERVPRO of South Arlington is here for all of your restoration needs.

Proof your roof

11/24/2021 (Permalink)

Proof your roof

Embers from nearby wildfires often land on roofs, where they can ignite a blaze that quickly envelops the whole home. "A flammable roof will make the difference of your house being destroyed and not being destroyed, regardless of what else you do," says fire scientist Jack Cohen. The best possible protection in this case? A roof constructed from nonflammable materials like asphalt shingles, metal, slate, or tile. While wood shingles are the most common flammable roof covering material, homeowners who don’t want the hassle of reroofing can treat their wooden roofs with fire retardant, or install a rooftop sprinkler system. However, experts warn that such solutions may be inadequate—so you might want to consider changing materials altogether. “A nonflammable roof is easy to achieve,” says Steinberg. “If you get a typical asphalt shingle roof with a good installation, you really don’t have to worry too much.”

Also note that leaves and pine needles that collect in gutters make for a dangerous ember landing bed. Make sure to clean your roof’s gutters regularly.

https://www.sierraclub.org/sierra/5-ways-protect-your-home-wildfires

 SERVPRO of South Arlington is here for all of your restoration needs

Secure equipment and valuables

11/24/2021 (Permalink)

Secure equipment and valuables

If you live in an area prone to strong winds or hail, keep an eye on the weather forecast so that you can protect your valuables before a storm hits. Ensure any high-value items are in a safe and secure area, stored up high and away from windows. Any outdoor equipment should be securely fastened so it’s not lost or turned into a projectile during a storm.

Keep your employees safe

In the event of a storm, safety is of the utmost concern. Stay away from windows, and take shelter in the safest part of your property. If your building doesn’t have a designated storm shelter, have employees take shelter in an area devoid of windows, such as a lavatory or break room. Prepare an emergency plan ahead of time and communicate it with employees, so they’ll know what to expect. Practice an emergency drill if possible, so that everyone will be prepared if weather conditions are threatening your safety.

https://www.insureon.com/blog/how-to-protect-your-business-from-wind-hail-damage

 SERVPRO of South Arlington is here for all of your restoration needs

Protect your business with adequate wind and hail insurance coverage

11/3/2021 (Permalink)

Protect your business with adequate wind and hail insurance coverage

A destructive storm can hit anywhere, but certain areas of the country are more likely to experience windstorms – a fact that may be reflected in your business’s insurance coverage. Wind and hail insurance claims are covered through commercial property insurance which can help you pay to repair or replace damaged property, including equipment, supplies, and structures. A business owners policy (BOP), which is specifically designed for small businesses, bundles commercial property with general liability insurance at an affordable price, and can also potentially pay for business property damage in the event of a storm.

If you’re in an area with a high risk of windstorms, review your policy language carefully with your Insureon agent. If you’re located in a high-risk zone, you may be able to purchase coverage as an endorsement to your standard small business insurance policy. This could mean a higher premium but more coverage in the event of a serious storm.

https://www.insureon.com/blog/how-to-protect-your-business-from-wind-hail-damage

SERVPRO of South Arlington is here for all of your restoration needs.

Smoke & Fire Damage and Homeowners Insurance

11/3/2021 (Permalink)

Smoke & Fire Damage and Homeowners Insurance

Homeowners insurance policies typically provide comprehensive cover for fire damage and water damage, e.g. used to extinguish the fire. But what if it’s not safe to stay in your home while your claim is being processed?

Most homeowners insurance policies provide Additional Living Expense (ALE) coverage. It pays for things like a hotel room, restaurant bills, groceries, animal boarding, and other expenses you have to incur, in addition to your regular expenses, because of the damage caused by a covered event.

Make sure to read your homeowners insurance policy, or call your insurance company for more details on what you’re allowed and not allowed to claim for.

https://www.avnergat.com/is-it-safe-to-live-in-a-house-with-smoke-fire-damage/

SERVPRO of South Arlington is here 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days  a year for all of your fire restoration services.

Planning Your Rebuild

11/3/2021 (Permalink)

Once your insurance company gives you the go-ahead, you will need to hire a contractor for repairs. Your insurance company might recommend someone to you. If not, search for someone local if at all possible, inquiring with friends, neighbors, and area businesses for references.  Check the credentials of prospective contractors, and as The Balance explains, you should get estimates from them at no charge. Your insurance company will pay the contractor directly for the storm damage.

Smart Alterations

You should rebuild in a manner that will improve your situation and help prevent future storm damage. Some experts suggest high-impact glass and functional (versus decorative) shutters to protect windows. You can also reinforce your attic area and roof, and consider replacing the roof with a high-impact material. Another suggestion is to brace your garage door to better withstand storms. Any changes from the original dwelling will need to be paid for by you.

 https://blog.familyhomeplans.com/2018/06/top-tips-rebuilding-home-office-storm-damage/

SERVPRO of South Arlington is here for all of your restoration needs.

Spontaneous combustion and chemical reactions

11/2/2021 (Permalink)

  • Spontaneous combustion and chemical reactions account for more than 14,000 fires per year, according to the NFPA. The exact cause of ignition in a spontaneous combustion chemical fire is often difficult to determine, however spontaneous heating is frequently the catalyst. Spontaneous heating happens when a material increases in temperature without pulling heat from its surroundings. An example of this is dried hay igniting in the hot sun.

Materials most commonly known to spontaneously combust include oily rags, hay, agricultural products and trash. Of these materials, oily rags account for the most fires. Warmer months, particularly July, see the most spontaneous combustion and chemical reaction fires.

https://www.thehartford.com/about-us/junior-fire-marshal/the-power-of-fire

SERVPRO of South Arlington is here 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year for all of your fire restoration needs. Let SERVPRO of South Arlington make you feel “Like it never even happened.”

Dos and Don’ts After a House Fire

11/2/2021 (Permalink)

A house fire can leave you feeling disoriented and confused about what to do next. Here are a couple of important dos and don’ts.

Things You Shouldn’t Do After a House Fire

  • Don’t enter your home to retrieve any valuables unless you’ve been given permission to do so by Fire Department officials.
  • Don’t turn on gas, electricity, and water until a professional has given you the green light to do so.
  • Don’t clean up the soot, smoke and fire damage yourself. Leave it to an experienced fire restoration company who has the proper safety equipment to clean up the damage.

Things You Should Do After a House Fire

  • Document all smoke and fire damage. Take photographs without disturbing anything in your house.
  • Inform utility companies about the fire.
  • Call your homeowners insurance company to start the claims process.

https://www.avnergat.com/is-it-safe-to-live-in-a-house-with-smoke-fire-damage/

SERVPRO of Grand Prairie  is here for all of your restoration needs.