Recent Posts

Can a Moldy Painting Be Saved?

3/26/2020 (Permalink)

brush, drawing beautiful interior over dirty image. concept Can a moldy painting be saved?

If mold is allowed to grow unchecked, it can spread throughout a home in Hyde Park, TX, and cause substantial damage. While this includes flooring and drywall, it can also include objects such as family heirlooms and valuable paintings. When it comes to mold cleaning on sensitive materials, special care must be taken. It will also likely require specialized equipment and advanced training of technicians. Both the paint itself and the material the paint is on—canvas, paper, board or some other surface—suffer from the presence of mold. With care and precision, a painting may be restored to a better condition.

Valuable and Sensitive Belongings

Each home contains items that are valuable in either an economic or an emotional sense. These objects are as varied as the people who own them and may include the following:

  • Paintings
  • Family heirlooms
  • Photographs
  • Writings
  • Antiques
  • Rare books

For the best results in mold remediation, it pays to search for an experienced mold mitigation franchise. Not only will the right company have trained technicians, it may also be able to tap into a larger pool of expertise. Depending on the material in need of restoration, and the amount of mold cleaning necessary, the techniques of air drying, freezer drying and vacuum thermal drying may be employed.

Sensitive Electrical Components

Water damage or mold damage can also affect electrical equipment such as computers and televisions. An electronics technician will know the best method to restore these items. This includes cleaning the exterior elements to prevent further corrosion or degradation. Mold cleaning involves many different situations that a cleaning crew might face. Quite often, there is water damage in combination with the presence of mold. A successful response includes eliminating the source of the moisture and removing as much of the mold spores as possible. With sensitive materials, such as paintings or electronics, additional expertise is called for.

What to Expect With Water Damage Restoration

3/24/2020 (Permalink)

Drywall removed from bathroom found water leaking on pipe causing damage to bathroom Water damage in a bathroom

What to Expect With Water Damage Restoration

Water in your home can easily create severe water damage causing serious hazards. Only drying the water may not suffice if you are up against flood damage leaving inches of water in your business. You will likely have to start with water cleanup and see what you can do from there. Here is some info about what can cause water damage, if you can remove it, and if your mitigation can help you with a water damage restoration project.

What Can Cause Water Damage?

The most common reason for water in your home is plumbing that has become dysfunctional. A small leak that is hardly noticeable can, over time, dump hundreds of gallons of water. Water cleanup to remove flood damage is another common cause of water in the home and water in a business.

Assess Your Situation

Evaluate how severe the water in your business of home is, so you will know how to plan a water damage restoration. Is this a small leak that you need to fix or is this flood damage that has left standing water in your basement? Mitigation of the situation is necessary when it comes to water cleanup if you ever want to complete a water damage restoration.

Water Removal

Removing the water in your home can be done in a couple of different ways. If you have a large amount of water from flood damage, you may need a pump it out using a water pump. For damp and wet carpets a wet/dry shop vac works very well for water cleanup. If things are just a bit damp from water damage, a mop should work pretty well to remove water and get it ready for drying.

Drying by Using Air Movement

Drying can be done by opening the windows for some air movement if the humidity is not too high. An air conditioner can help speed the drying process if you can't open the windows. A dehumidifier can be used to remove moisture from the room. Fans can be used to create air movement.

Hazards Associated With Water Damage

Water in your business or home can cause serious hazards. If the moisture is not removed, it will promote the growth and reproduction of mold and other organisms. Cleaning up as soon as the problem is noticed can find mitigation of the possible effects of water damage.

Mitigation of the terrible things that can happen to your home can be avoided if you know what to do. If you remove the standing water, dry all areas completely with devices that promote air movement, and clean everything well you should have no problem committing yourself to a water damage restoration. 

We are Cleaning Experts

3/20/2020 (Permalink)

guy spraying wall We are here to help to prevent business interruption!

SERVPRO is Here to Help during this time of need 

During this unprecedented time caused by the global pandemic of coronavirus, this is a reminder to our customers that we are specialists in cleaning services, and we adhere to the highest cleaning and sanitation standards. 

Specialized Training 

We are prepared to clean and disinfect your home or business, according to protocols set forth by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. We have years of experience in dealing with biological contaminants, and we will go beyond the scope of work that regular janitorial staff perform on a daily basis. 

The CDC encourages cleaning of high-touch surfaces such as counters, tabletops, doorknobs, light switches, bathroom fixtures, toilets, phones, keyboards, tablets and tables. Other spaces mentioned in the CDC’s guidance for commercial spaces include: 

  • Kitchen/Food Areas 
  • Bathrooms 
  • Schools/Classrooms 
  • Offices 
  • Retail Spaces 
  • Water Fountains 
  • Shelving/Racks 
  • Sales Counters 
  • Carpets and Rugs 
  • Stair Handrails 
  • Elevator Cars 
  • Playground Equipment 
  • Fitness Equipment 

Specialized Products 

The CDC recommends usage of a labeled hospital-grade disinfectant with claims against similar pathogens to the coronavirus. Multiple products in the SERVPRO product line carry the EPA-approved emerging pathogens claims. While there is currently no product tested against this particular strain of the coronavirus, we are following all guidelines as provided by the CDC and local authorities. 

Call Today for a Proactive Cleaning 

If your home or business needs deep cleaning services, call the experts today – SERVPRO of Hyde Park/ Central Austin- (512) 318-2200

Does Renters Insurance Cover Flood Damage?

3/13/2020 (Permalink)

Renters insurance form and dollars on the table. Does Renters Insurance Cover Flood Damage?

If you are a landlord and rent property in Leander, TX, it is to your advantage if your tenants obtain renters insurance. This policy covers their belongings in the case of a fire or from damage or loss of contents due to vandalism. It also has a component of liability coverage in most cases, which could come back to being a benefit for property owners. That's because the liability aspect covers accidental damages caused by a renter that spills out into other rental units that you own. While legally, tenants are responsible for this damage, if they do not have the money or insurance to pay out, you could be left holding the bag.

The Benefits of Insurance Coverage

The best situation is when both the landlord and the tenant have adequate coverage. In the case of a storm, or some other damaging event, it is common for the property owner to pay for any structural damage, while the tenant pays for damage to his or her belongings. Basic renters insurance covers the following situations:

  • Fire
  • Theft
  • Vandalism
  • Damage inflicted by a pet
  • General liability

The coverage for a renter is usually fairly inexpensive. A tenant can also purchase add-on coverage in the form of extra insurance for high-value items or coverage for such things as plumbing malfunctions that destroy contents.

The Advantage of Storm Response

Whatever your insurance coverage is as a landlord, and whatever renters insurance your tenant has, it's always a good idea to partner with a storm remediation team should disaster strike. A fast local response is critical to saving property and reducing expenses. Professionals will have the equipment needed to remove water and deal with difficult situations such as contaminated water from a flood or a sewer backup. A top company will also help you work with your insurance company to get a fair and accurate claim payout.

What Damages Are Covered by Renters Insurance

2/27/2020 (Permalink)

Renters insurance form and dollars on the table. Renters insurance is all about cushioning tenants from surprise expenses

Know What Your Policy Covers

Renters insurance is all about cushioning tenants from surprise expenses. It comes in several flavors, with each dealing with fire incidents differently. For this reason, it is essential to know what your policy covers.
Most renters insurance packages in Cedar Creek, TX cover the following situations:

  1. Personal property damage or theft
  2. Medical Payments to others
  3. Loss of use

Personal Property
Most policies cover the cost of repairing or replacing your stuff after fire damage - up to the limit of your coverage. However, some of them will offer actual cash value that will only compensate for the current price of your stuff. For example, If your TV is destroyed in a fire, you should get an exact amount to buy a new set of the same model with the first option. The second scenario will get you the depreciated market value of your old device.

Medical Payments to Others
In the unfortunate event of a fire, any third party who sustains injuries can file a compensation claim and win easily. For instance, if a delivery person breaks a wrist while evacuating your burning house, they could sue you for damages. This policy should cover all the medical expenses, allowing you to concentrate on the intricate fire restoration process.

Loss of Use
A fire usually leaves an inhabitable house when it finally dies down. Therefore, you will need to find emergency shelter for the next few days, and your renters policy should step in to pay the hotel bill. Still, it's important to discuss your limits with an agent to avoid unnecessary expenses.
Most people overlook the importance of renters insurance when they really shouldn't. The last thing you want is to cover someone else's medical bill while trying to recover from a house fire. So, you can think of it as the one thing that will protect your wallet from surprise expenses.

Restoring Your Home After Flood Damage

2/19/2020 (Permalink)

A flooded entrance of a home A flooded home in Bastrop, TX

The number of extreme storms has been trending upward in the last decade, which means homes are at increased risk of damage from flooding. If your Bastrop, TX, home has sustained flood-related damage, you are undoubtedly concerned about what cleanup and restoration will look like. Consulting a water remediation specialist is the first step in the restoration process.

Why Expert Assistance?

Floodwater is highly toxic and should not be contacted without protective gear. Water contamination is categorized using three levels. Floodwater is termed black water, or Category 3, the highest level of contamination. Floodwater, like sewage cleanup, requires fast action by restoration specialists. Here’s why:

  • Floodwater may be contaminated with toxic chemicals, sewage or other hazardous materials.
  • Serious contamination can easily be missed by an inexperienced eye.
  • Flood cleanup requires specialized safety and ventilation procedures, which are part of professional restoration protocols.
  • Water remediation professionals move quickly, minimizing the chances of secondary damage that may develop as time progresses.

If you are going to be turning over your home to restoration crews, it may help to have an idea of what to expect from the cleanup process for black water damage.

What Happens During Cleanup?

Once the floodwater has been removed, teams will begin setting up elaborate ventilation systems and removing wet items. Wet structural elements, such as drywall, may need to be replaced. Depending on the damage, you may need to be out of your home until safety and toxicity are addressed.
Restoration teams will professionally clean carpets, upholstery and other porous items, if possible. Electronics, such as computers and televisions, will be dried and restored using specialized dehumidifying processes.
Photos, documents and other paper-based products will be handled immediately as they deteriorate quickly when damaged by black water. The items will pass through a series of drying methods and then will be sanitized and pressed. Professional restoration services usually include HIPAA-certified staff to protect the confidentiality of your documents.
Dealing with Category 3 water damage can feel daunting for a homeowner. A professional water restoration service can provide timely, safe cleanup procedures with the goal of returning your home to normal as soon as possible.

Grilling Safety 101

2/4/2020 (Permalink)

a grill with flames Grill fires sometimes start because grease and other types of buildup have been left to sit on the grill’s trays and surface.

If you are a grilling enthusiast, the risk of starting a grill fire may have crossed your mind once or twice. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to ensure better security while barbequing outside in Cedar Creek,TX. You just need to learn what those steps are. Here are 3 safety tips to keep in mind when cooking with your propane or charcoal grill.

1. Grill Placement Is Important

Never place your grill too close to your house. Keeping it away from hanging branches, rails and eaves is also a very good idea. The main thing to remember is that you want to keep as many flammable objects and surfaces as far away from the grill as possible to avoid a far-reaching barbeque fire that could cause extensive damage.

2. Clean Your Grill

Clean your barbeque on a regular basis to lessen your chances of starting such a fire. You will likely be pleased to have a cleaner piece of equipment, as well.

3. Stay by the Grill

A lit barbeque should never be left unattended. Stay very close to it during the entire time that you are cooking. You also need to make sure that no children or animals come near it at any time, as they will be unable to prevent an incident and may even cause one. Any time you are not watching your grill, a fire and subsequent smoke damage can occur.

Now that you have some ideas about how you can keep your home and family safer while grilling, you can cook some barbeque favorites with an easier mind. A grill fire is not fun, but taking the right precautions allows you to avoid many disastrous accidents outside of your Cedar Creek,TX, home.

How To Lower Your Business Interruption Claim

1/29/2020 (Permalink)

Drywall removed due to pipe break Commercial mold growth due to water damage in Austin, TX

Here Are Some Tips on Lowering Your Claim

Good insurance coverage for your commercial property in Austin, TX, is an essential business expense. If flooding or some other disaster destroys your building, you may need to lean on your business interruption policy to stay afloat. You can probably keep your premiums lower, however, if you don't make large claims. Here are some tips on lowering your claim.

Quick Response

The first thing you need to do when you discover that a broken pipe has flooded a large portion of your work space is call water restoration experts. Technicians can often arrive within a few hours to start the steps of the remediation process:

  • Assessment
  • Extraction
  • Drying
  • Cleanup
  • Restoration

You may not be able to avoid an interruption to your business. Your quick response, however, can lower costs by getting the cleanup started sooner. A faster restoration can also help you avoid secondary damage such as mold that often happens when large water damage is left too long.

Interruption Plan

Having a plan for what you will do if your building is damaged by flooding can help you minimize costs. Have a contingency plan in place and streamline the transition to it. For example, if you can figure out a feasible way to let employees temporarily work from home, that can help you avoid the cost of relocation while your building is being restored. Keeping the basics of your business operational can help you continue to bring in money, thus lowering the portion of the insurance claim that covers lost revenue. It can also help you remain competitive in your field if you don't have to shut your business down completely during remediation.
Preparation and action are the keys to lowering your business interruption claim. Even if your building is compromised by flooding, you may still be able to continue the work you do if you have a flexible plan. Quick and thorough remediation help you return to business as usual as soon as possible.

Insurance Agents and the SERVPRO Claims Inventory System

1/24/2020 (Permalink)

Claim Document . Electronic mail. Vector image on white background SERVPRO can make your job easier when you access the claims inventory system

SERVPRO Can Make Your Job Easier

When disaster strikes in Northwest Hills, TX, just about everyone in the community is involved in some way. If you're an insurance agent serving this community, you may have concerns about your own home and business place, as well as the responsibility to handle an insurance claim for each of your clients. SERVPRO can make your job easier when you access the claims inventory system.

Parts of the Claims Inventory System

There are three parts of the system that work together to help you pull up the information you need as quickly as possible:

  • The Claims Information Center contains many relevant facts and figures including a history of claims and even answers to some of your most asked questions.
  • The ReportER database is handled through corporate headquarters, so you can access relevant information from around the country.
  • The Management Dashboard puts all of the access tools in a user-friendly platform, so you won't have to struggle to find the information you need.

Completing an insurance claim accurately can be a time-consuming task and may be overwhelming if you have your own properties to worry about. With the SERVPRO claims inventory system at your fingertips, you can enjoy many benefits.

How the Inventory System Helps Agents

What exactly does the inventory system have to offer? Insurance agents can use the system to look up facts according to claim type and within a specific geographic location (such as nationally or locally.) Agents can get more information about cause of loss information or run comparisons of job costs. The database also keeps track of response times, company performance compared to national averages, and individual file reviews.

Simplify the Claims Process and Move On

Working through an insurance claim for someone else who requires the services of property damage reconstruction professionals while your own home or commercial property has been affected by a disaster can be difficult. With a lot of facts and comparisons all in one place, you may find the claims process has been streamlined and simplified, letting you move on to other things.

3 Tips for Locating Unseen Mold

1/10/2020 (Permalink)

A woman staring covering her nose and staring at a wall covered with mold A musty smell could be the cause of mold growth

3 Tips for Locating Unseen Mold

When you have a mold smell in your North Loop, TX, business there may be a problem. Unfortunately, odor alone is not always enough to locate the problem. If you haven’t found the source of the smell, here are a few things you may want to consider.

1. Look for Water Problems

In many cases, a persisting fungus smell can also indicate a moisture problem. This is because most mold growth occurs around areas of water damage. If you have a location in your company property that has sustained water damage this should be the first place you look for possible mold. Consider leaky appliances or bathroom areas, but also check around the foundation or areas of damage in the roof.

2. Call a Professional

It’s also highly recommended to contact a remediation service whenever you notice a mold smell. These professionals will have a good idea of where the source of the odor may be. In the event that mold spores are not visually identifiable, they should still be able to perform several tests in order to determine if mold is present on the company property.

3. Have a Test Done

If you can’t see the source of the mildew smell, the restoration professional can complete a series of tests to determine if and where mold may be. They may conduct an air test, take a residue sample, or even take a sample of material that mold may be growing on. Once the results have been determined the remediation service can let you know what the best course of action will be.
Locating a mold smell at your place of business can take a little time. Consider areas where water damage or other moisture problems have occurred around the business property. If the source of the odor remains unfound the professional remediation service can have some tests done to determine the location and mold type of anything located on the company property