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4 Ways to Prevent Damage During a Flood

7/29/2022 (Permalink)

Sandbags for flood defense Use sandbags near doors and windows to keep moisture at bay.

Four Strategies to Avoid Damage During a Flood

Storms and bad weather in Cowesett, RI, can cause flooding which can damage your home. This type of damage can be severe, so it is best to prepare as much as you can. The following are a few things that you can do to help minimize the impact of this water on your house.

1. Inspect Your Home
If your house is already damaged, this can make any storm damage you experience even worse. Cracks in the exterior of the building and deteriorated door and window frames can allow moisture inside. If this happens, you could be dealing with mold growth and rotting materials later on. Perform a thorough inspection if you are expecting a storm, and make any necessary repairs.

2. Move Important Items
Flood damage will affect your belongings as well as the structure of your building. Absorbent materials and electronics can be permanently damaged if water enters your home. If your house has multiple levels, move anything you can to a higher floor. Otherwise, place important items on shelves and in airtight containers, if possible.

3. Clean Drains and Gutters
Leaves and debris can clog your gutters, making it more difficult for water to drain properly during a storm. This can cause the water to back up and cause damage to the walls and roof of the building. These should be cleaned regularly and kept clear.

4. Use Sandbags
While you may not be able to keep it from flooding, you can reduce the amount of water that enters your house. Use sandbags near doors and windows to keep moisture at bay. These will absorb water and help keep it from filling your home.
Using these tips can help you limit the impact that flooding has on your home. However, there may still be some damage. If this is the case, a clean up and restoration service can help. They can remove water from the building and perform repairs on your house and belongings.

3 Signs That You Have a Water Leak

7/23/2022 (Permalink)

Mold growth on a drywall If you notice a musty smell in your building, you probably have mold growing.

3 Signs That You Have a Water Leak

It's hard to pin down every single factor that affects the variable expenses in your commercial property in Apponaug, RI. It's normal for utility bills to fluctuate with usage. When you notice a big change, however, it is indicative of a specific problem. If you see any of these three signs, you probably have a water leak.

1. Large Utility Bill

A huge spike in your water bill means you are suddenly using a lot more water than you have before. A pipe break or leaking faucet can go undetected for weeks, especially if there are no visible signs. Even a small leak that hasn't done noticeable damage to walls, floors or ceiling tiles can cost a lot of money. The increase in your bill may be the first sign that anything is wrong.

2. Continually Running Meter

There are many reasons to keep an eye on your water meter. One of those reasons is that it can tell you if there is an unusual amount of water being used in your building. A meter that won't stop running even when there's no one in the building is a clear symptom of a water leak.

3. Musty Odor

A long-term leak leads to water damage. If left unchecked, it can also cause secondary damage such as mold growth. If you notice a musty smell in your building, you probably have mold growing somewhere, indicating the presence of water where it's not supposed to be. Water mitigation specialists can locate the problem and propose the best solution to deal with all the damage that the leak is causing.
A water leak isn't always obvious as soon as it happens. Sometimes, the first sign that you have a problem is an exorbitant water bill. If you notice this or any other sign of a leak, get it fixed as soon as possible to avoid other problems.

Bread Is One of Mold’s Favorite Foods

7/18/2022 (Permalink)

Bread with mold Virtually everyone has experienced bread mold

One of Mold's Favorite Foods Is Bread

Virtually everyone has experienced bread mold. It won’t take long for a loaf of bread sitting in a pantry to develop mold, especially in warm and humid environments. There are some good, scientific reasons why bread is so attractive to mold:

  • It has a near-ideal moisture level for mold development
  • The basic ingredients of bread are perfect for mold growth
  • Most bread is kept in a warmer location, like a cabinet, which favors mold growth.

Mold Is a Form of Fungus

Fungus is essential to the functioning of the world. It’s actually neither a plant nor an animal, but instead is in its own biological classification, called a kingdom. These life forms can’t produce their own food like plants or go hunting for it, like animals. Instead, they live on other forms of life, leeching their nutrients directly from whatever it’s living on. Without fungi, virtually nothing in nature would ever decompose.

Fungus Growth Can Be Slowed But At A Cost

There are some steps you can take to prevent bread mold, but they will impact the flavor somewhat. Most commercial bakeries use calcium propionate as a preservative. It retards the growth of mold and other microorganisms, extending the shelf life of food products. The FDA says it’s “generally safe to eat,” which is good because it’s used a lot. However, some studies have indicated that it may cause irritation in a small number of children. It may also cause headaches for some individuals, and some people say it affects the flavor of food.
To slow the growth of bread mold in homemade baked goods, you can store leftovers in the refrigerator. Inside the fridge, mold growth will be substantially slowed. However, it also tends to dry out the bread and reduce the natural flavor. Like many things in life, it’s a trade-off, but at least it’s a reasonable option.
If you have mold damage in your home, talk to a local mold remediation company in West Warwick, RI, about getting an inspection and starting the cleanup process. Once mold starts growing on building materials, you’ll really need an expert to determine the scope of the infestation.

How Pretesting Keeps Claims Expenses Lower

6/28/2022 (Permalink)

Drying equipment placed on a long hallway of a hotel SERVPRO technicians can prevent damage from spreading.

Pretesting Process

Like most businesses, insurance companies need to stay vigilant about costs. You need to provide your customers with quality service without wasting their resources.
When a Cowesett, RI, customer has a claim, you can help keep costs down by implementing the pretesting process. Here is a look at the method and how it helps.

What Is the Process?
A SERVPRO technician visits the damaged property after a fire, storm, flood or other peril. The technician inspects the damage to determine the need for:

  • Repairs
  • Restoration
  • Remodeling
  • Cleaning

What Does Pretesting Determine?
The process helps the professional restoration company decide what materials they need to replace and what they can restore. It is not always necessary to completely replace items or structures if they can be cleaned and repaired.
The method can also uncover the best cleaning techniques to restore damaged belongings.
The process can define what areas are unaffected. Technicians can cover or seal off these areas to prevent further damage.

What Are the Advantages?
It keeps down the cost of an insurance claim to fix or clean items that are not a total loss. As an example, If a building has water damage from a burst pipe, the mitigation process can be less complicated than if the water is from a flood.
By determining what areas are unaffected, SERVPRO technicians can prevent damage from spreading. They can also help the insurance agent avoid the unnecessary cost of making repairs to areas that don't need it.
Pretesting helps the insurance company focus on the affected sites and avoid wasting time or resources on unneeded repairs or replacements. When you can save your client time and money, everyone benefits.
Conducting tests at a Cowesett, RI, property helps you provide your client with a thorough investigation. It also helps you reduce expenses and avoid wasting precious resources.

3 Reasons To Consider Storm Shutters

6/20/2022 (Permalink)

Metal accordion storm shutters closed to protect a home from the oncoming hurricane. Storm shutters are an investment.

Storm Shutters: 3 Reasons to Consider

It doesn't matter if high winds are a regular concern, or if you simply want to add some curb appeal to your East Greenwich, RI, home: Storm shutters are an investment. Here are three reasons to consider this home upgrade.

1. They Protect Your Home
The main reason to add shutters to your home is typically security-related. Preinstalled and easy-to-activate window coverings are one of the best ways to defend your house from hail, flying debris and any of the myriad concerns that can arise — in some cases literally — during severe or unusual weather.
Even if you're confident that there's enough plywood out in the shed to board up your windows when a storm's on its way, professionally engineered and installed window coverings are the safest and most convenient choice. They're built to take a beating and be swiftly deployed.

2. They Protect Your Home From More Than High Winds
Many exterior window coverings are a theft deterrent if for no other reason than that they safeguard the most fragile and burglar-friendly areas of your house: the windows.
The level of practical security they provide depends on the type of shutter you install and the materials used. Aluminum is a popular choice, for example, and many homeowners choose to put them in a position not only during storms but also while traveling in some instances.

3. They Can Increase Your Home's Resale Value
In addition to protecting your windows, several types of shutters are aesthetically pleasing and can boost your home's purchase price in the event that you'd like to sell it one day.
Keeping your home storm-ready is one of the smartest things you can do as a homeowner. Prevention and continued maintenance now may mean one less call to your local water damage restoration company after high winds or heavy rain in the future.

Why Board Up Services Are Necessary and Beneficial

6/6/2022 (Permalink)

Outdoor of a home burned, window boarded with plycem Securing board-up services helps minimize secondary damage.

If your home in Warwick, RI, sustains a fire, there is a good chance that it has compromised areas that may provide an opening for additional damage. After it is safe to enter the property, the next step is to board up any broken windows or holes in the roof. This may involve attaching temporary boards or tarps.

Benefits of Emergency Board Up Services

While it may be easy to get lost in the loss itself, covering exposed areas is beneficial in many ways, including:

In many cases, your insurance provider will require these services. If it doesn’t happen, it means risking your insurance coverage. While every policy is different, it will cover the damage from the event and not secondary damage caused by not securing the property.
Avoiding secondary damage is essential to maximizing your claim and reducing the amount of work that will be needed. If there is a hole in the roof and it starts to downpour, that means increased odds of mold growing in your home.
Tarping exposed areas minimizes the chances of critters and people entering the home without your permission. Avoiding vandalism and property loss are key benefits of board-up services.

Fast, Professional Services
Any time your property sustains damage it comes with stress. Luckily, you can minimize that and ease the entire process by contacting a fire damage restoration company. Along with having the expertise to repair and restore the damage, they provide tarping services prior to when the work starts. Once the restoration can begin, you already have a one-stop-shop to handle all the restoration needs from fire to water and mold damage.
After a fire, securing your property is essential. Securing board-up services helps minimize secondary damage and makes it easier to get the most out of your insurance claim.

Top 5 Places Where Mold Forms in Businesses

5/26/2022 (Permalink)

Hand pointing to mold growth on ceiling Mold in ceilings can also result from roof leaks.

Five Places Where Mold Grows

One big aspect of mold prevention is early detection. Although it is impossible to completely eliminate the possibility of fungal intruders in Pilgrim Park, RI, uncovering growths that have recently begun to develop grants you an opportunity to stop infestations from worsening. Here are five locations within your office that should be checked regularly.

1. HVAC Drain Pans
Air conditioning pans are located near your temperature control system’s cooling coils. The sweat that develops as air moves through the coils drips into the pan. When flow rates become too high, the collected condensation can overflow. This runoff sometimes soaks ductwork, making mold a possibility.

2. Ducts
Air moving through ductwork contains heavy moisture. When this buildup condenses, it gets absorbed into duct linings. Besides checking for growths, ensure that your system’s airflow rates are optimal as an additional form of mold prevention.

3. Ceilings
Because they tend to be porous, mold sometimes grows in ceiling tiles. Those adjacent to HVAC system vents are particularly vulnerable. Mold in ceilings can also result from roof leaks. When this happens, the eventual water damage gives good reason for hiring an expert roofing repair team. Such professionals are also typically capable of safely removing mold growth.

4. Carpeting
Carpets are susceptible to spills, floods and leaks. Look underneath yours to determine whether dampness exists. A wet vacuum should be employed when water is discovered. Follow this step with a good steam cleaning. Fans and dehumidifiers may also be used to accelerate the process.

5. Wallboard
Flooding, groundwater and mechanical system leaks are common causes of damp wallboard. Get rid of compromised wallboard by cutting at least 20 inches above the water’s high point. Make certain that all wall and ceiling cavities are thoroughly dried before installing a fresh set.
An important part of mold prevention is rapid discovery. Halt the progress of fungal invasions by regularly checking your building’s most common trouble spots.

Be Prepared for the Unexpected with Business Interruption Insurance

5/21/2022 (Permalink)

Visible damage to a commercial building following a structure fire Commercial fire damage in Norwood, RI.

Business Interruption Insurance

If a fire breaks out in your Norwood, RI, business, it has the potential to bring operations to a halt. Business interruption insurance is designed to help businesses stay afloat while a professional fire damage restoration company gets the property back to how it was before the loss.

What Does It Cover?
While a general policy is designed to cover the property loss after a business fire or other unexpected event, interruption insurance is an additional layer that focuses on the financial side of dealing with the loss. In most cases, coverage includes:

  • Potential profits lost
  • Fixed operating expenses
  • Temporary relocation costs
  • Payroll
  • Loan payments and taxes
  • Other expenses incurred as a result of the loss

Like with other policies, there is a coverage limit. Businesses should work closely with their provider to determine how much coverage would be needed if disaster strikes. To maximize the coverage, it is recommended that businesses develop a contingency plan to help ensure that if an event happens that stops operations, they will be able to recover as quickly as possible. 

How Long Does Business Interruption Coverage Last?
These add-on policies typically include a restoration period. Although every policy is different, the coverage often lasts for one year. After the claim is filed, a business should expect to wait up to 72 hours before the restoration benefits start. During that year, it is imperative that a business a set plan in motion for fire cleaning and other restoration services. After the 12 months is over, the benefits will stop even if the property is still under repair.
Along with the hassle of dealing with a fire, it may also mean a business interruption that is difficult to recover from. By having an additional layer of coverage, businesses have the means to rebuild and stay in business.

Unexpected Consequences of a Home Water Leak

5/16/2022 (Permalink)

Water leaking on ceiling Water leaking on ceiling.

Water Leak in the Home Has Unexpected Consequences

You are not alone if you worry about a water leak that could cause damage to your home in Nooseneck, RI. In fact, a water-in-home incident ranks as one of the biggest fears of homeowners. You probably are aware that a cracked pipe or a faulty appliance could release hundreds of gallons of liquid into your home. Even if that water is clean, it can result in significant damage to furniture, walls, flooring and more. If the water is contaminated, it can do even more damage and require the services of a highly-trained water mitigation team.

Unpleasant Surprises of a Broken Pipe
When water is released into a room, it can spread quickly and result in damage almost immediately. The longer the water remains, the more damage it will do. You might be concerned with fabrics and less durable surfaces, but water acts as a corrosive and can result in multiple avenues of property damage:

The ruination of drywall and underlying insulation
The tarnishing of metals, wiring and gas lines
The spoilation of foods and other perishable items
The harm to paintings and other family heirlooms

When you have water in the home incident, you could also be at risk for mold growth. This could happen even after the water has been cleaned from your property.

Positive Results From a Water Cleanup
To minimize the damage to your home, a professional cleanup will look at all areas of damage. Trained technicians will use a variety of advanced techniques to save property and restore personal items. Dry cleaning and additional methods are often the best chance to save clothing and other valuable items.
If you do experience a water-in-home event, you might be surprised at the level of damage that occurs. A professional response is often the best way to guard against the consequences of unwanted water.

Negative Effects of and Protections Against Business Power Outages

4/26/2022 (Permalink)

Power line knock down. Concept of power outage When your business experiences a power outage, the results can be devastating.

The Consequences of Business Power Outages and How to Avoid Them

When your business experiences a power outage, the results can be devastating. Thankfully, there are measures you can take to mitigate the problems that come with suddenly lacking power. Here's some quick information regarding office power loss, along with tips on protecting data.

Effects of Losing Power

A heavy storm or blizzard can knock down power lines in Hillsgrove, RI, putting your company in an unenviable position. Some difficulties that come with suddenly losing energy include:

  • Spoiled food, when office lunches are no longer being refrigerated
  • Lowered productivity, triggered by the inability to access electronic systems
  • Lost income, due to clients severing ties as a result of dissatisfaction with lack of service

Additionally, there is the possibility that when a power outage ends there could be a power surge that causes a fire. Even minor blazes can create structural damage that must be fixed by a team of commercial restoration experts.

Protections Against Losing Power

There are numerous ways of keeping your business safe from a loss of power. One essential protective measure is to use a cloud backup and recovery system. Regularly duplicating electronic records keeps important information secure.
Assure that computers are always accessible by installing backup batteries. These replaceable life-savers typically last between three and five years. As a general rule, you want one with a wattage output capacity that is 20 to 25 percent higher than the devices it connects to.

Having a portable generator means lights can stay on until power is restored. A wide variety of options may be found at major hardware stores. Prices range between a few hundred dollars and a couple thousand.
Never ignore the importance of surge protectors. Without one, a sharp electrical rush might completely incapacitate your computer.
A power outage has the potential to wreak havoc on your office. Take steps to guard yours before bad weather brings about disaster.