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How Our Experts Handle Water Damage To Your Los Gatos Home

10/10/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage How Our Experts Handle Water Damage To Your Los Gatos Home Many different household crises can cause water damage in Los Gatos.

Professional Water Cleanup In Los Gatos

Many different household crises can cause water damage in Los Gatos. Most are related to leaks in plumbing or malfunctions of the appliances that every home has to make life easier - dishwashers, water heaters, laundry equipment, and the like. Arranging for professional assistance to help with cleanup and drying out is wise. We can help.

Although the reasons necessitating water cleanup of your home in Los Gatos often relate to ordinary wear and tear, trying to manage the process as of DIY project is not recommended. Water is notoriously difficult to eliminate without specialized equipment and training. Any moisture that remains exposes your home to progressive deterioration of building materials and the risk of secondary damage like mold growth. Our crews and commercial grade water mitigation tools lead to successful outcomes.

When SERVPRO arrives, our crew chief assesses the situation and designs a plan according to your particular circumstances. Swiftly our employees implement the plan, pumps, extractors, and drying equipment always available on our service vehicles. Water is evacuated as completely as possible, including hidden water trapped behind walls or under cabinets. We use advanced technology like infrared scanners to locate the water trapped in the many recesses every house features.

Our team is well-qualified to measure moisture levels in porous materials as well, which helps as our crew lead determines drying targets. Once the majority of the water exits via pumps and extractors SERVPRO turns to air movers, heaters, and dehumidifiers to reduce moisture remaining in your home to normal levels. We learn how to achieve the proper balance of air movement, temperature, and air moisture through rigorous coursework mastered at IICRC training, the industry standard.

A speedy and comprehensive water cleanup approach is needed as mold can begin growing after only 24 to 48 hours. SERVPRO crews reliably remove the water and dry out the premises fast, a result that is impossible to achieve without the experience, training, and equipment our team brings. We also work with your insurance, lessening that stress and strain on the homeowner.

SERVPRO of Los Gatos / Monte Sereno has the trained crews, hands-on experience, and equipment to clean up water damage “Like it never even happened.” Call us at (408) 600-2020 without delay when you suffer a water loss.

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Want your Doors Open for Business? After a Water Loss in Los Gatos Call SERVPRO for Immediate Help

9/25/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial Want your Doors Open for Business? After a Water Loss in Los Gatos Call SERVPRO for Immediate Help SERVPRO Provides Kingly Service to Los Gatos Commercial Water Damaged Properties

How to Deal with Commercial Water Damage in Los Gatos Effectively

Water damage in a commercial establishment can happen instantly if plumbing lines burst. It might also develop slowly over time if a small leak is not detected. While a slow drip might seem like the better evil, such cases lead to microbial growth which has longer-term implications. With the help of a professional restorer, it is possible to deal with any case of water loss in your Los Gatos establishment.
Dealing with commercial water damage in Los Gatos always involves some degree of urgency. This is an immediate need, unlike personal property where it is only a matter of inconveniences. Losing customers to competitors due to downtime caused by flooded premises can have lasting repercussions. SERVPRO understands this which is why we send teams with enough human resources and equipment to deal with the problem swiftly.
Effective restoration works based on the ability to establish and deal with the source of the water, and then dry any standing water fast enough before other problems arise. The equipment used affects the speed of water extraction. For example, truck mounted extractors are better for larger pools of water. These extractors are also independently powered, so the risk of using power from the mains in a flooded property is negated. Various sections of the property might also require different types of equipment. For example, the extraction wand used in carpeted areas should be different from what is used on wooden floors to avoid damaging these surfaces. With access to a broader range of equipment, our SERVPRO technicians choose the best ones to suit the kind of loss in your property. All drying areas are monitored against established baseline measurements with moisture meters until the goals have been achieved.
Proper restoration of affected items is essential. While replacement is necessary for some, many can be restored to preloss condition through cleaning and drying. Such restoration can help shield your business from unnecessary costs and closures. Our SERVPRO team inspects the afflicted areas to establish what is possible to salvage. For wet carpets, the only requirement is thorough cleaning and drying. However, if a glue-down carpet is removed to allow proper drying of the affected area, it cannot be reinstalled. Wooden floors can be saved through proper drying which involves applying airflow above and beneath the wood floor. Veneer hardwood flooring is harder to save.
Taking the right steps reduces the downtime your business suffers. Call SERVPRO of Los Gatos / Monte Sereno for assistance. You can reach us at (408) 600-2020.

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Some Warning Signs of Smoke Damage After a Los Gatos Fire

9/23/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Some Warning Signs of Smoke Damage After a Los Gatos Fire Fire and smoke can affect many materials in your home. Contact SERVPRO to mitigate the situation after a fire.

Aspects Overlooked When Restoring Fire Damage in Los Gatos

Fire damages structures and contents in different ways. Most people only think of damage as charred remains or ashes. Other forms of damage such as smoke particles settling or adhering to surfaces do occur. In most cases, such smoke damage is more extensive than the damage from flames. The probability of restoring items affected by smoke in your Los Gatos property is much higher if the right approach is taken.
How stubborn smoke residue is, in a case of fire damage in Los Gatos, can be traced back to the intensity of the fire. High temperatures open up pores in the materials where the smoke residue is deposited. This expansion allows aerosols and other residues to penetrate deeper. Cleaning such sections requires extra effort. Our SERVPRO technicians use high-pressure washers and cleaning agents to remove any baked-on smoke residues from the affected areas.
HVAC systems in your premises can spread residues all over a structure by distributing the smoke-filled air. Some components of the system such as mixing boxes, turning vanes, dampers and cooling coils might also be damaged necessitating replacement. While our SERVPRO technicians might not repair such systems, we do a thorough inspection to establish the level of damage. In most cases, only the ducts require cleaning and our technicians do this by vacuuming and washing the interiors.
Bad odor is also common after a fire. Even though it is invisible, the discomfort it causes can render your property uninhabitable. Most odors disappear once you clean residues left in the affected areas. However, some require specific deodorization efforts. For the best outcome, deodorization should recreate the same procedures the odor-causing particles penetrate the surface. Since smoke is the primary source of odors in cases of fire damage, our SERVPRO technicians use foggers to deliver the deodorizer effectively. We can also use Ozone machines or hydroxyl generators depending on the situation.
For complete restoration after a fire, call SERVPRO of Los Gatos / Monte Sereno. You can reach us at  (408) 600-2020 any time.

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Be Prepared with an Emergency READY Profile

8/31/2018 (Permalink)

Will you be ready when disaster strikes? The SERVPRO® Emergency READY Profile® (ERP) will help ensure you and your business are “Ready for whatever happens.”

In the event of an emergency, the SERVPRO Emergency READY Profile can help minimize business interruption by having an immediate plan of action in place for your facility. The ERP is a comprehensive document containing critical information about your business, including emergency contact information, shut-off valve locations, and priority areas. The ERP is also accessible online using your computer or tablet; download SERVPRO’s free Ready Plan app to access this information at any time using your smartphone or tablet.

The ERP establishes SERVPRO of Los Gatos/Monte Sereno as your disaster mitigation and restoration provider, giving you access to 50 years experience and a system more than 1,700 Franchises strong. Knowing what to do and who to call in advance is key to quick response and timely mitigation. Having a plan in place may help minimize the amount of time your business is inactive and get you back in the building following a disaster.

Preparation is the key to making it through any size disaster, whether it is a small water leak, a large fire or an area flood. The best time to plan for such events is not when the event happens, but well before it happens. No one ever expects a disaster, but now is the time to plan for it.

In review, the SERVPRO Emergency Ready Profile is:

  • A no-cost assessment of your facility.
  • A concise Profile document that contains only the critical information needed in the event of an emergency.
  • A guide to help you get back into your building following a disaster.
  • Establishes SERVPRO of Los Gatos/Monte Sereno as your disaster mitigation and restoration provider.
  • Identification of the line of command for authorizing work to begin.
  • Provides facility details such as shut-off valve locations, priority areas, and priority contact information.

The ERP is a no-cost assessment; all it requires is a little time, making it a great value that could save a lot of time in the future. Call SERVPRO of Los Gatos/Monte Sereno at 408-371-4001 to start your Emergency READY Profile today.

How to Prevent Fires in the Office

8/31/2018 (Permalink)

Have you reviewed your office’s fire prevention and safety procedures recently? Office fires lead to millions of dollars of property damage every year as well as employee injuries and deaths. Simple changes in your office can both prevent fires and prepare your employees for emergencies.

Avoid Overloading Circuits

Outlets were only designed to handle so much. You may be tempted to use power strips to plug in as many devices into each outlet as possible, but overloading your circuits can lead to fires.

Talk to your electrician to set rules for the outlets in your building, and communicate these rules to each of your employees.

Clear the Clutter

It’s easy to let paper, boxes, and the like clutter desks and other work areas. However, clutter provides easy fuel for fires to grow and spread faster. Boxes of papers near a stairwell or door can easily catch fire and block potential exits during an emergency.

Most accidental office fires start in the kitchen. It’s important to keep flammable materials away from kitchen equipment such as coffee machines and hot plates. Clean these appliances regularly so they can function properly.

Make sure all heat-producing equipment has room for air to circulate around it, especially copy machines, computers, space heaters, and coffee machines.

Shut Down Appliances & Equipment

While most office fires happen during the day, the most damaging fires happen while everyone is gone for the night. Choose a designated person to sweep through the office and turn off electrical appliances at the end of each work day.

Examine all electrical equipment employees bring in, such as space heaters and lamps, to make sure they are in good condition. Require employees to unplug these devices when they leave as well.

Establish a No-Flame Rule

Don’t allow employees to use lighted birthday candles or burn scented candles at their desk or in break rooms. Remember, accidents with small flames can lead to big problems.

Watch the Wiring

If any of your office’s electrical cords show signs of damage such as fraying or tears in the plastic covering, replace them immediately. Encourage your employees to report any defective wiring as well. Exposed wiring can encounter moisture, which may cause short circuiting and fires.

Don’t run cords across the floor where people may step on them or roll over them with carts or chairs. This leads to damaged cords, which can, in turn, lead to a fire hazard.

Secure the Building

Arson accounts for a significant portion of office fires. Lock up your building securely every night. Make sure any parking lots or alleyways near your building are well lit. You may want to invest in a security system as well.

Create and Implement an Office Evacuation Plan

Consider talking with your local fire department to create an office fire safety and evacuation plan. Identify all possible exits in your office, and establish an evacuation protocol including office safety officers and meeting places. Print out copies of the plan that highlight exits, escape routes, and meeting places.

Display your office evacuation plan in high employee traffic areas, like break rooms. Go over the plan with all new employees, and schedule fire drills every few months to practice.

Equip your office with fire safety items such as smoke alarms and fire extinguishers. Your fire department should know the exact requirements for your building.

At SERVPRO® of Los Gatos/Monte Sereno, we can create an Emergency READY Profile for your business. When disaster strikes, you don’t want to spend time trying to figure out who to contact for what. Our ERPs include a detailed assessment of your facility along with a profile document and guide to getting you back to business faster after an incident. We even offer a mobile app for convenience.

Even small fires can leave significant property damage; smoke can enter your ventilation system and spread soot and debris throughout your building. We can accurately assess fire and smoke damage and help make your office “Like it never even happened.”

If you’ve had a fire in your office, or if you want to set up an Emergency READY Profile, call us today at 408-371-4001

Smoke and Soot

8/31/2018 (Permalink)

Smoke and soot is very invasive and can penetrate various cavities within your home, causing hidden damage and odor. Our smoke damage expertise and experience allows us to inspect and accurately assess the extent of the damage to develop a comprehensive plan of action.  

Smoke and soot facts:

  • Hot smoke migrates to cooler areas and upper levels of a structure.
  • Smoke flows around plumbing systems, seeping through the holes used by pipes to go from floor to floor.
  • The type of smoke may greatly affect the restoration process.

Different Types of Smoke

There are two different types of smoke–wet and dry. As a result, there are different types of soot residue after a fire. Before restoration begins, SERVPRO of Los Gatos/ Monte Sereno will test the soot to determine which type of smoke damage occurred. The cleaning procedures will then be based on the information identified during pretesting. Here is some additional information:

Wet Smoke – Plastic and Rubber

  • Low heat, smoldering, pungent odor, sticky, smeary. Smoke webs are more difficult to clean.

Dry Smoke – Paper and Wood

  • Fast burning, high temperatures, heat rises therefore smoke rises.

Protein Fire Residue – Produced by evaporation of material rather than from a fire

  • Virtually invisible, discolors paints and varnishes, extreme pungent odor. 

Our Fire Damage Restoration Services

Since each smoke and fire damage situation is a little different, each one requires a unique solution tailored for the specific conditions.  We have the equipment, expertise, and experience to restore your fire and smoke damage.  We will also treat your family with empathy and respect and your property with care.

What You Can Do When Your Toilet Leaks

8/31/2018 (Permalink)

If you are like most people, you probably worry about keeping your bathrooms clean and as sanitary as possible. You may even purchase special in-bowl-chemicals for toilets, cleaners for counters, and sprays for mirrors. So, when a pool of water appears at the base of your toilet, it is reasonable to be concerned about the source of the water and the consequences of the pooling liquid. The problem may be a leaking toilet, a broken tank, or a damaged supply line.

What Can You Do?

Depending on the size of the water puddle, there are several ways you can address the situation.

• Try fixing the bathroom leak on your own.
• Call an experienced team of water damage professionals to assess the situation and restore the property.
• Call friends and ask them to come help repair your bathroom.

No matter which of the above repair methods you choose, the first step to take is to make the area safe by removing the puddling water around the leaking toilet.

How Can You Find the Problem?

If you are a DYI type of individual the next step in fixing your bathroom water problem is locating the leak. The toilet may have a crack, so check the sides of the bowl below the seat for flaws in the ceramic material. You may also want to examine the tank to see if it is leaking between the toilet base unit and the upper tank unit. The water could also be leaking near the floor around the wax ring inside the toilet base. Another possible scenario is a leak from the supply lines at the back of the toilet.

What Do You Do Next?

No matter which type of leak you find, the next step is to turn the water supply line off at the wall to prevent additional water damage. The valve is usually located behind the toilet. From there, the choice of what to do about the leaking toilet is all yours because the repair can differ greatly depending on what is causing the toilet leak. SERVPRO of Los Gatos/Monte Sereno is here to help 408-371-4001 

Specialized Cleaning for Contents

7/27/2018 (Permalink)

Restoring Smoke, Water and Mold damaged property is faster, easier and more effective with Ultrasonics than with any other process.

Contents Restoration is an important business. It not only helps to restore damaged property, it helps restore people’s lives and livelihoods. While property damage can take many forms, what’s important to the owners is that their lives are returned to normal, and that they get their property back, as fast as possible.

Of course, when property can be returned depends on the type and severity of the damage. Certainly not every item, such as those actually burnt or melted in fires, can be restored, but a great number of items that would have traditionally been determined to be unrecoverable can now be quickly restored and returned to the owner with Morantz Ultrasonics.

Benefits of Ultrasonics for Contents Restoration 

The benefits of restoring property with Ultrasonics are two-fold:

  1. For Insurance Companies:The cost of restoring an item versus reimbursing the owner for the item’s full value is dramatically diminished. Example: a $1500 television can typically be cleaned and returned to the owner within days. The cost of cleaning that $1500 television for the Insurance could be only $300 (or whatever the restoration company decides to charge for their service). This represents a significant savings.
  2. For Property Owners: They get their original property back quickly. Whereas traditional cleaning methods can take weeks and cause additional property damage, with Ultrasonics most items can be cleaned in as little as 30 seconds to 2 minutes). As a result, it’s no surprise that most people are happy simply getting their property back, especially if it means getting their lives back to normal as quickly as possible and even more so if the items have sentimental value.

Types of Contents Restoration

The damage that occurs to property during fires, floods, accidents and other disasters is often much more severe than it first appears. To be sure, fire itself is destructive and an item that is physically burned or melted cannot be restored. However, property that has been engulfed in smoke, covered in soot, stained or discolored by water or contaminated by chemicals or molds can usually be restored to functional (or even good-as-new) condition with Morantz Ultrasonics.

How Common Damage Occurs

Damage to property and personal possessions can occur in many different ways. While damage as described above is common, fires are particularly troublesome as they can often result in multiple forms of damage. For example:

  • During a Fire: Fires can produce vast amounts of smoke that leave soot deposits on property. Depending on what has burned and the temperature of the fire, the soot produced by the fire may not only be mixed with a variety of chemicals and toxins. Additionally, physical properties of the soot can range from a fine powder to a thick sludge. Furthermore, because the particulate matter that makes up soot (and the chemical residue) is microscopic, it can not only penetrate deep into tiny crevices on the surface of an item, but it can also “sink” deep into the item itself. This is especially true of electronics which can actually attract soot and dirt because they can generate magnetic fields or become charged with static electricity.
  • Immediately After a Fire: The water that was used to extinguish the flames can discolor the surfaces of many types of items. Additionally, water can cause severe physical damage since the materials from which many items are made can actually absorb surprising amounts of water.
  • Long After a Fire: Many types of materials and even the items themselves can retain significant levels of moisture. Moisture absorbed by an item that has not been properly dried, or that remains on or near the surface, may quickly become a breeding ground for molds and bacteria or other potentially hazardous residues (again, depending on what has burned).

Sewer Backup Dangers

7/27/2018 (Permalink)

Sewer backups are emergencies that you need to deal with quickly.

Don’t treat a sewer backup lightly. Sewer backups are emergencies. They are health hazards. Sewer water often holds bacteria, viruses, and other microbes that can lead to serious illnesses. If your sewer backs up in your home or building or on your property, know what type of sewer water you’re dealing with: 

Clean Water
Some water backups are clean. Examples include a broken water supply line or leaking faucet. If you don’t treat it quickly this type of water backup can get more serious. Without attention and clean up, any water can become gray water (category 2) or black water (category 3).

Gray Water
Gray water is water from a sewer line backup that’s contaminated and could cause discomfort or illness. You have gray water (category 2) if the water’s from a washing machine overflow; a toilet overflow with some urine (no feces); or a dishwasher overflow. This type of sewer water backup can quickly degrade into black water (category 3) if not treated. Again, quick clean up is important.

Black Water
 Pros use this term to describe grossly contaminated water. Sewer drain backups like this could cause severe illness or death if ingested. Avoid all contact with black water. You have black water when you have flooding from rivers or streams; water from beyond the toilet trap; water from the toilet bowl with feces; or standing water that has begun to support microbial growth.

Call SERVPRO of Los Gatos/Monte Sereno whenever you have sewer backup problems.

At SERVPRO of Los Gatos/Monte Sereno we’re trained in the safest, most advanced, and quickest ways to eliminate all sewer backups. 

Dangers of Hoarding

7/27/2018 (Permalink)

We have heard of those crazy shows about individuals hoarding stuff and not wanting to part ways of all the things they have collected over the years. At SERVPRO of Los Gatos/Monte Sereno we want to keep families safe and give them tips in keeping a safe and healthy home. Hoarding is something hazardous when it comes to fire safety for anyone with this problem. The risks of one hoarding can crowd stoves and ovens making very unsafe to cook because of the possibility of something falling into those appliances and starting a fire. Another risk has items to close and crowed near heating equipment like a fireplace or a furnace which is very dangerous if the items were to fall into these kinds of equipment causing it to damage and start a fire. The hoarding of items is a very serious dangerous even when it comes to saving your own life. Firefighters will have a hard time trying to get in your home to rescue you or your loved ones in case of a fire. With stuff being everywhere like in any hoarding situation can make it difficult for a firefighter to navigate in the home. It is important to remember that if you have lots of items in or around your home to keep them at least 3 feet away from cooking appliance like a stove(s) or oven(s) and as well as any heating equipment like furnaces, boilers or fireplace.