Recent Posts

What Are the Most Common Water Business Losses?

6/14/2022 (Permalink)

Pipe system covered with insulation By insulating your pipes you can prevent ruptures

The Most Common Water Damage Incidents

Your Los Gatos, CA, business can be vulnerable to water damage caused by various incidents. From damaged pipes to natural disasters, the excess humidity can distort and destroy everything inside your building. Some of these scenarios are more frequent and more preventable than others. Protect your establishment by learning about the most common water damage incidents so you can avert or resolve them effectively. 

Severe Weather Conditions
Some water-related incidents are difficult or outright impossible to avoid. Severe weather events such as heavy rain and snowstorms can compromise the building and allow water to enter. A tornado could also tear apart the area and impact the plumbing system or the water used to extinguish a fire can leave behind excessive amounts of water. You can reduce damage by maintaining the drainage system and keeping a list of useful contacts such as emergency lines, your insurance agency and water remediation specialists at hand. 

Burst or Leaking Pipes
Another problem that continues to plague multiple business owners is damaged pipes. There are various factors that can affect your piping such as: 

  • Metal corrosion 
  • Aged and worn out materials
  • Improper assemblage
  • Physical impact
  • Freezing temperatures 

Each potential problem has a solution. For instance, proper insulation can stop cold temperatures from raising the pressure inside the pipes and a timely replacement of old pipework can prevent ruptures. Look for signs of leaks such as discoloration, mold and puddles, especially before the situation escalates into flooding. 

Malfunctioning Appliances
Your business will likely use water appliances such as dehumidifiers, washing machines, water heaters and refrigerators. When issues such as faulty hoses and connections occur, water can spill and damage your floors, ceilings or other belongings. Follow their respective instruction manuals to ensure they operate properly. Conduct necessary inspections to detect any signs of malfunction or old age.  
There are several risk factors that can lead to massive water damage. Identifying problems such as damaged pipes or leaky dryers quickly can significantly reduce any potential business loss. 

4 Unique Challenges With a Community Disaster

6/2/2022 (Permalink)

Picture of a warehouse with drying equipment, dehumidifiers, air movers and air scrubbers Our equipment

Four Unique Challenges With a Community Disaster

Sometimes disasters strike only a specific company, such as a fire that breaks out in a business in Saratoga, CA. Other times a catastrophic loss happens across an entire community, complicating the availability of services for multiple properties at one time. Examples of this include the high waters due to a breached dam in Midland, Michigan, in May of 2020, and the storm cleanup in the southeast in 2016. When this happens, responders must solve several challenges.

1. The Need for Equipment
If high waters impact numerous properties, the vacuums and pumps needed to remove the water might be in short supply. A local restoration franchise such as SERVPRO can call in additional resources to facilitate cleanup, whether the facility suffers from fire or storm damage. The company known for being Faster to Any Size Disaster will bring in equipment from other franchises throughout a regional area.

2. The Need for Qualified Workers
A widespread catastrophic loss requires the help of workers who know how to remediate water damage and remove smoke and soot. Many actions require technical knowledge that is beyond the scope of general cleanup. Industry certifications from professional organizations such as the IICRC show that workers have the necessary skills to tackle complex restoration jobs.

3. The Ability To Deal With Flooding
A flood poses many difficult challenges. There are extensive safety issues. These include a heightened risk of electrical shock. There are also concerns about secondary damage such as mold growth due to increased moisture. When a community must deal with extensive water damage, additional resources must be brought in to save lives and property.

4. The Knowledge To Handle Insurance Issues
The ability to deal with insurance matters also helps a company in need. Working with a preferred vendor of insurance companies ensures proper documentation and timely communication during the chaos of a community catastrophic loss. 

3 Types of Damage that Occur During a Fire

5/24/2022 (Permalink)

Burnt insulation all over the place, personal contents burned Fire damage in a home in Campbell, CA.

Three Different Types of Fire Damage

A fire in your Campbell, CA, home can be devastating. Fire damage can affect your belongings as well as the structure of the building. On top of this, you may be dealing with secondary forms of damage as well. The following are some ways that various elements may affect your home and how you can address it.

1. Fire
The damage caused by flames is likely the first to cross your mind when you think of a fire in your home. Fire damage can be incredibly destructive, leading to missing sections of the building and ruined property. Luckily, a clean-up and restoration company can make repairs and rebuild your home. They can also salvage many damaged items.

2. Water
You may not usually consider water damage as a consequence of a fire, but depending on the size and severity of the blaze, firefighters will need to use a fire hose to put out the flames. This can result in flooding inside the building. It is important to have this water removed as soon as possible to prevent additional problems such as mold. A dehumidifier and open windows can help the building dry more quickly.

3. Smoke
Smoke travels further than flames, so it often affects a larger area of your house and can leave a film of soot on walls, floors and objects. This can be corrosive to certain materials and should be removed right away. For hard surfaces, soap and water are usually enough but fabrics may need to be dry cleaned or put in the wash. Using an air purifier can help remove smoke odors from the environment.
If you have experienced a fire in your home, it’s important to begin work on fire damage and any other issues as soon as possible. This will prevent the damage from worsening and will allow you to have your home back to normal more quickly. Any needed cleanup and repairs can be done by a professional service to ensure the building is safe.

Take These 3 Steps To Determine Whether Your Homeowners Insurance Covers Your Broken Pipes

5/19/2022 (Permalink)

Bursting pipe More water damage is caused by broken pipes.

Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Broken Pipes

If a flood has occurred in your San Jose, CA, home, you may be wondering how you'll find the money to cover that damage. The good news is your homeowner's insurance may pay for the repairs.
Before you do anything else, however, you need to get the water out of your home and the damage repaired right away. Contact specialists in water damage restoration to make everything as good as new. Then look at the following factors to determine if your policy will cover the damage costs.

1. Read Your Policy To Determine Your Insurance Coverage
The first place to start is by looking at your insurance policy to determine what kind of damage is covered. Most policies will pay for harm that incurs from a sudden flood as well as the costs to fix broken pipes and other repairs. If you're uncertain, consult with your insurance agent.

2. Look at the Type of Damage
If the damage is the result of a slow leak, that's generally not covered by your policy. You are the homeowner and are responsible for all maintenance and repairs, and if you don't repair leaks when you discover them, you can't expect insurance to cover damage caused by your negligence.
Damage from a burst or broken pipe, on the other hand, causing a sudden flood is covered by most insurance policies.

3. Document Everything
It's important to document everything and keep all receipts, not only of the repairs after a pipe burst but also all maintenance you've done on your home over the years. That way, you can prove that you were diligent in caring for your home.
A pipe bursting in your home can be a pain, but with the right help and by documenting everything both before and after the damage occurs, you'll restore your home in no time.

3 Unique Features of a Partial Loss Fire

5/11/2022 (Permalink)

Two windows of a building with smoke damage and broken windows Even a partial loss fire is a traumatic event.

Partial Loss Fire

A business fire no matter how minor is still a significant event. While you may have been spared from seeing your entire facility in Lexington Hills, CA, lying in ruins, you still have to walk through your company and observe soot-covered walls and smell smoke odors. Depending on the situation, the partial fire loss could include scorched furniture and blackened personal items. The next few days or weeks will present several unique challenges.

1. Insurance Issues
If you hadn't already, you will probably learn a lot about your insurance policy and your insurance carrier. Make sure you stand firm and get the benefits of your policy. This typically includes a provision that repairs are of high quality and they return your facility to a uniform and consistent appearance.

2. Smoke Damage
The remaining structures and items in your building are likely tainted with pervasive damage from smoke. Eradication of smoke odors will almost certainly require the services of a fire mitigation team that has the tools and equipment to remove odors from walls and other items. General cleaning methods are likely only to mask the smell and in a few days, the odors could return. After a partial loss fire, insist that special techniques are used according to best practices from the cleaning industry.

3. Fire Restoration
Many items in your facility might be able to be cleaned and restored. Experienced technicians have a variety of sanitizing techniques to clean ceramics, hard surfaces, tiles and other materials. Porous materials such as clothes, fabrics and furniture could benefit from other cleaning methods. Some burned items cannot be restored and will need to be replaced. The restoration process could also involve the rebuilding of walls and other structures depending upon the fire's severity.
Any fire, even a partial loss fire, is a traumatic event. It requires precise techniques to get the best results.

How Business Interruption Insurance Differs From Other Insurance

4/26/2022 (Permalink)

Business interruption insurance form and red pen for signing. Interruption insurance usually starts when a business is closed due to a covered event.

For your company to remain strong in difficult times, it will need a good insurance plan. The complete mix of insurance products will depend upon many things, but your company will require a comprehensive policy that protects against property damage and liability concerns. A complete or partial rebuild could cost many thousands of dollars. A major disaster could also cause your building in Cambrian Park, CA, to shut down for days or even weeks. In these situations, your company could face a significant loss of business income, resulting in the inability to pay creditors, vendors and employees. Fortunately, there is insurance available for a business shutdown.

The Basics of Business Interruption Insurance

This type of insurance is typically added to your primary policy, which pays for such things as storm damage, fire damage, a rebuild or other covered perils. Interruption insurance usually starts when a business is closed due to a covered event. It typically helps with the following operational costs:

  • Loan payments
  • Loss of business income
  • Expenses as a result of the closed business
  • Employee payroll
  • Taxes
  • Rent or lease payments

Once your company is able to operate again, this type of insurance is no longer in effect. In some cases, depending upon your policy, you could get reimbursed for efforts to set up a temporary place of business.

The Basics of Successful Remediation

No matter what type of disaster your company faces, it might need the services of a professional storm remediation franchise. This highly-trained team can remove standing water from your facility caused by storms or floods. An assortment of technicians can remove excess moisture, clean and sanitize the building and restore damaged materials. They can return your building to its original condition.
If a rebuild is necessary, experienced professionals can complete the work efficiently. This allows your company to get back to work again in a timely manner.

3 Steps to Prevent Mold Growth

4/16/2022 (Permalink)

Mold growth on wall due to humidity Water damage can lead to mold growth.

Mold Prevention

You might think that mold growth only appears in the wake of severe water damage, such as the damage inflicted by a flood or broken pipe. In reality, however, such seemingly inescapable factors as high humidity or nearby plumbing fixtures such as sinks and showers can lead to mold contamination. Luckily, there are three simple mold prevention steps you can take to protect your business' building:

  • Install an air filter and dehumidifier
  • Install a humidity meter
  • Fully treat any moisture problems right away

Air Filters and Dehumidifiers

Air filters and dehumidifiers are available for purchase at any home goods store and are both worthy investments. Air filters comb through your building's air and trap the mold spores that exist in almost every environment, and dehumidifiers help make your building inhospitable to potential mold growths.

Humidity Meters

Working in conjunction with dehumidifiers or on their own, humidity meters will also help you manage the humidity levels in your building by alerting you if they reach a certain threshold that is inviting mold growth. Knowing there's a problem is always the first step toward fixing it, and this device will give you peace of mind that your building is not at high risk.

Water Damage Remediation

Mold spores are incredibly fast-acting and can start to spread on a surface with a moisture problem within 24-48 hours. If you have a broken or leaky pipe, don't wait to call the plumber and clean up the mess, and if a flood strikes, make sure to remove all wet materials and set up a dehumidifier immediately.
Mold prevention might feel like a lot of trouble, but you'll be glad you did it in the long run. Mold remediation can be a lengthy and intensive process and requires the assistance of your local mold cleanup specialists. In the event that you suffer water damage and notice a mold growth in your building, however, don't worry too much — SERVPRO of Los Gatos/Monte Sereno, will make it seem "Like it Never Even Happened."

Are You Likely To Experience a Rate Hike When You Seek Insurance Assistance?

4/11/2022 (Permalink)

tool box on flooded water Water damage in Monte Sereno, CA.

Are You Likely To Experience a Rate Hike When You Seek Insurance Assistance?

Homeowners in Monte Sereno, CA, pay monthly premiums to insurers to have assistance in times of trouble. Filing an insurance claim is a lifesaver for many, avoiding significant costs at one time; however, does this action mean residents will pay more in future premiums? The answer to that question isn't simple or easily discerned. It depends on multiple factors. Here are three factors that influence an agency's rate adjustment.

What Caused the Water Damage?

While requesting compensation, the agent is likely to ask about when the harm began, how it happened and if immediate action was taken to mitigate the destruction. If owners caused the issue or allowed it to fester, insurers get concerned. Paying for them might happen, but it could mean that you'll pay for your actions in the premiums.
If the fault doesn't fall on the owner but on nature or someone else, the insurer may not place blame, forgiving the event and leaving the monthly cost alone. Without a doubt, prioritize cleanup to show good faith. Agents are likely to appreciate a swift response from a water restoration company.

Where Do You Live?

Some locations are likely to see more people filing insurance claims. Residents living along the coast may have hurricanes blow through more often, causing harm to roofs. The same is true of homeowners living in flood zones, tornado alleys and heavy snowfalls. Agencies are likely to evaluate how much they could payout over time, using this probability to calculate monthly fees.

How Often Are You Making Requests?

Insurance companies are a business. While they offer monetary assistance, they must weigh the risk of putting out too much. The business considers how frequently owners ask for coverage. Filing for a home flood is one thing. If the owners also ask for roof and foundation repair, that could be too much for the establishment to sustain within a short window of time.
File an insurance claim when the money is needed. Be aware that the insurer has the right to evaluate the risk of the payment in the future, adjusting bills to assist in future demands.

3 Ways Water Can Damage Your Home After a Fire

3/31/2022 (Permalink)

burned items of a home, wet and burned insulation on the floor Fire damage to a home in Monte Sereno, CA.

Three Ways Water Can Cause Damage To Your Home After a Fire

A fire can wreak havoc on your home, but the flames aren’t the only things that can cause destruction to your property. Often times, water can cause as many or, in some cases, more problems as the fire damage itself. If you own a home in Los Gatos, CA, then you should be aware of the ways that water can cause further devastation after a fire.

1. Ruptured Pipes

During a fire, temperatures in your home can become extreme, and the intense heat can cause burst pipes and plumbing malfunctions. Falling debris can also lead to warped or broken pipes. Even if parts of your home are spared from burning, flooding can cause water damage throughout your residence, especially to walls and flooring.

2. Storm Damage

Fire damage often includes structural problems to the roof and windows. This can mean that water will be able to enter the home during any inclement weather that occurs before repairs can be completed. Placing tarps on the roof and boarding any broken windows can help mitigate these potential problems.

3. Water From Fire Hoses

When firefighters go to work to extinguish a burning house, their biggest ally is water. While absolutely necessary, the thousands of gallons that can come from a fire hose can leave behind a great deal of residual water that will need to be cleaned and removed. The longer this water sits stagnant, the greater the potential for incurring more damage and costly repairs. Fire extinguishers used by emergency responders can also contain compressed water, which can also leave behind destruction.

If you are dealing with the heartbreak of a fire in your dwelling, you are probably preparing to combat the fire damage you have suffered. However, you should also make a plan to deal with the destruction that water may have caused to your property, as well. Contact an emergency restoration specialist for more information to help you restore your home to the safe haven you deserve.

3 Tips for Preventing Post Flood Mold

3/30/2022 (Permalink)

Drying equipment in a room, drywall removal Dry the area that has been affected by water to avoid mold growth.

3 Ways to Avoid Mold After a Flood

If your Saratoga, CA, has experienced flooding after a storm, then you may be worried about the possibility of mold growth. Fortunately, there are a number of things you can do to help mitigate this potential problem. Many mold remediation professionals recommend the following

1. Thoroughly Dry the Area

The first step to take care of in the event you may have mold damage is to completely dry any area affected by water. In many cases, a professional restoration company may use a dehumidifier. Getting rid of the water can help make the area inhospitable to mold spores.

2. Have an Expert Test for Mold

On some occasions, the potential mold growth may not yet be visible. If you believe you may have mold in your home, even after drying and sanitizing the flooded area, then a professional may be able to perform a test. Testing can include taking air samples, pulling a sample from an at-risk material, or taking a surface sample. If mold has been found, then your mold remediation professional can formulate a plan for mold removal.

3. Clean Any Water Damaged Items

Another common tip for complete mold removal includes thoroughly cleaning any items that may have been affected by the storm damage. Mold spores can grow on any organic material that contains moisture. This can include carpeting, wood, upholstery, and even drywall. Fortunately, there are a number of methods to properly clean and sanitize these items.

Because mold growth usually occurs in damp areas, thoroughly drying any flooded areas can help prevent this type of problem. If you believe mold has already set in you can have a professional test for spores. It is also a good idea to properly clean any items affected by the water damage as well. If you have any questions a professional may be able to help.