Recent Why SERVPRO Posts

How Pretesting After a Home Disaster Can Reduce Insurance Claims

2/18/2019 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO How Pretesting After a Home Disaster Can Reduce Insurance Claims Flooded basement in a Bayside, NY home

A disaster such as a flood at your Bayside, NY, home can be devastating. Not only could is displace you and your family, but it can also severely damage or even completely ruin belongings, keepsakes, and even structural components of your house. You’re grateful to have insurance to help cover your losses. However, heavy claims can raise your premiums. To keep claims down, professional restoration teams can conduct extensive pretesting to determine what you can salvage and restore and what you must replace.

What is Pretesting?

This process works in tandem with the initial inspection, and it’s critical before you make an insurance claim. Your insurance provider expect you to make contact quickly after an incident so it knows what it can and will cover. Pretesting helps to accurately make claims by identifying the scope of the issues.

  • Crews will determine what materials and portions of your home were affected.
  • Crews will determine if any parts of your house were untouched by damage.
  • Crews will determine what it can restore and what it must replace.

Danger of not Pretesting

What would happen if you were to hire the wrong cleanup company—one that didn’t pretest and examine the scene following a flood or other disaster? In this case, you might report unnecessary losses to your insurance agent, which would result in higher claims and more long-term financial burden. A knowledgeable disaster restoration company carefully evaluates this entire scenario and helps limit the amount of claims you have to make.

Sometimes Replacement Is Inevitable

There are cases when the company will discover during pretesting that the damage was too great to salvage a portion of your home or a belonging inside. It may be more cost-effective in some instances to replace rather than restore. The team will also determine how long both the restoration and replacement process will take.

Working with an insurance company can be a smooth experience. If you want to minimize claims, it’s best to work with a disaster response company that believes in pretesting.

What Are the Signs of Mold in Your Building?

11/29/2018 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO What Are the Signs of Mold in Your Building? Mold loss in Whitestone,NY

An ongoing concern for property owners in Whitestone, NY, is the threat of mold growth in their building. An undetected mold problem can cause thousands of dollars' worth of damage, not to mention possible health issues for tenants or workers. If you suspect a problem, an indoor environmental specialist can do a mold test to determine what type of mold, if any, is involved. If a problem is found, they have the expertise and equipment needed to safely eradicate it.

Let's Look at Some of The Things That Might Indicate a Problem

1. Mold Odor

A common indicator of mold is a strong, musty smell. This is a good way to detect a problem that might be hidden from view behind walls or ceilings. A persistent mold odor is a good reason to contact an indoor environmental specialist to do further testing.

2. Visible Mold

Actually seeing mold not only tells you have a problem, but that there's probably more that you can't see. The visible mold could be just the tip of the iceberg, with a much bigger problem hidden from view.

3. Water Damage

If you've had water damage in your building, whether from a leaky roof, broken pipes or flooding, there may be undetected moisture behind walls, floors or ceilings. This moist environment offers the perfect conditions for mold to flourish. It's important to address any possible mold issues soon after the damage occurs to make sure a small problem doesn't turn into a much bigger one.

If you think you might have mold in your building, it's a good idea to contact an indoor environmental specialist as soon as possible. They can inspect the premises to isolate the source and determine what type of mold growth is occurring. Then, using specialized techniques and equipment, they can make sure that any mold in your property is completely removed, efficiently and safely.

3 Tips for Creating an Office Fire Escape Plan

11/21/2018 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO 3 Tips for Creating an Office Fire Escape Plan Have your fire escape plan updated in your Flushing,NY office

Fire Escape Plan

No matter what type of office in Flushing, NY, you manage, having an updated fire escape plan can save lives. It is important to imagine many crisis scenarios to best determine your escape routes and what tools you will need available. Effectively communicating to your coworkers their roles and responsibilities during a crisis, as well as knowing your building and resources, can also help you design the right course of action to take during an emergency.

1. Imagine Many Scenarios

The best emergency escape plan is one that considers many different crises. If there is a fire, you will be advised to stay low and leave the building by the most effective route; however, where the fire originates may impact various exit paths. These escape scenarios will be different depending on the location and size of your business as well as what types of clients and customers you see.

2. Communicate Roles and Responsibilities

When designing and practicing a fire escape plan with your office, it is important that you clearly communicate with each other and have designated roles and responsibilities. For instance, you can select one person to call emergency services. Your team leads can be responsible for keeping track of their team members, and you can even have someone in charge of grabbing a folder of important phone numbers, such as those for emergency restoration services and emergency contact info, on the way out.

3. Know Your Building and Resources

Emergency escape plans should demonstrate a detailed knowledge of the location and the tools available. This means knowing where the nearest exits are, which staircases lead outside most effectively and even what emergency medical or rescue gear is available.

Having the right fire escape plan for your office can save lives. Creating an emergency preparedness program for your business means knowing the basics of your building, your company and even your coworkers. This can help you effectively design the strategy best fitting your needs.

Creating a Maintenance Schedule for Your Home’s Sump Pump

11/13/2018 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO Creating a Maintenance Schedule for Your Home’s Sump Pump Water damage to the floor in a Whitestone, NY home

Your Whitestone, NY, home’s sump pump can be the first line of defense against basement flooding. Weather events, poor drainage and plumbing pipe breaks are all potential sources of a damaging flood or standing water. Maintaining your pump regularly can ensure it is ready and able to work when floods occur, no matter their source.

The Importance of Caring for Your Pump

A working pump can protect your basement and its contents in several ways by draining and sending water away from your home and could prevent the following issues:

  • Mold growth
  • Water damage to the floor
  • Crawlspace flooding

A pump that is kept in good working condition can be your best defense in the face of unexpected floods, especially if you are away from home when they occur. Planned maintenance may help you remember to service it properly and often.

Monthly Maintenance

Checking your sump pump on the first of every month can help you gauge how well it is working and whether it is making any unusual sounds that may signal a problem. Check the power source and then inspect the pump’s cord for fraying and worn spots. To ensure the unit will drain away any excess water in the event of a flood, fill the sump until the inner float triggers the system and the pump turns on. Note any operations that are out of the ordinary so you can report them to a technician.

Yearly Checks

Yearly pump maintenance is best performed before the rainy season. Because these checks usually require in-depth servicing, it is wise to call in a flood damage and storm restoration service to have it performed. The techs will likely clean out the sump and ensure all the parts are greased and working properly to prepare it for the upcoming wet season.

Your Whitestone, NY, home’s sump pump is an important tool for preventing long-term water damage. Regular, planned maintenance can give you peace of mind that your unit will function when flooding affects your neighborhood.