Recent Why SERVPRO Posts
How Does an Electronic Claims Service Work?
An electronic claims service provides insurance agents and adjusters with information about individual claims and collected data. SERVPRO maintains this service to support insurance claim processing and settlement. Find out how this electronic service can make settling claims easier and faster.
Restoration Professionals Upload Estimates
Local franchises upload information to an internal corporate database. Estimates and claim information are then made available to insurers thorough an electronic claims service. Agents and adjusters can access several types of information to process and settle a claim:
- Causes of loss
- Types of damage
The availability of this information can relieve property owners of some of the burden of providing documentation to insurers. In addition to viewing this information, most insurers will also arrange to have an adjuster inspect the damage.
Agents and Adjusters Access Claim Information
An electronic claims service supports every stage of the claims process. An insurance agent or adjuster can access information related to a claim at any time. The service also provides access to collected data from across the country and makes it possible to narrow results to the same region, state, county or local area as a particular job. This data helps make sure that an insurance claim is in line with averages and can make it easier to account for additional costs.
Claim Updates Are Made Available
Insurance company representatives can find updated information on a claims service throughout the mitigation and restoration process. If additional damage is discovered, this information will be made available. Insurers can use this service to determine whether this damage is covered.
An electronic claims service connects local SERVPRO franchises with the national corporation. In turn, this service also supports communication between the mitigation and restoration service and insurance companies. Settling an insurance claim may be faster and less stressful when information is available online for a property in Rusellville, KY.
3 Surprising Things You Can Do To Reduce the Smell of Cigarette Smoke
If you still have smoke odor, try calling professional restoration services
How to Reduce The Smell of Cigarette Smoke In Your Furniture and Carpets
Home deodorization in Hopkinsville, KY, can be a challenge, especially if you or a family member smokes. Whether you are getting ready to host friends or family members or you just want to be ready for unexpected company, here are a few surprising things you can do to reduce the smell of cigarette smoke in your furniture and carpets and throughout your home.
1. Use Vinegar
Vinegar might not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of cigarette removal, but it’s very good at removing stubborn scents from a variety of fabrics. If you have pillow cases, blankets or decorative throws that are saturated with the scent of your cigarettes, throw them in the wash with two cups of vinegar. Then put them through a regular drying cycle. You’ll be surprised at how fresh-smelling they are when you pull them out. If the smell of cigarette smoke lingers, wash them once more to get rid of it completely.
2. Sprinkle Baking Soda on Furniture
Baking soda is a well-known air-freshening tool. It’s frequently used in refrigerators to soak up the smell of old, rotten food. You can also use it to absorb the smell of stale cigarette smoke. For home deodorization purposes, sprinkle baking soda on all soft furniture surfaces in your home. It won’t work very well on leather, but it should work great on fabric furniture. After sprinkling generously across all furniture, use your hands to smooth it out and make it disappear into the fabric. After letting it sit for at least 10 minutes, vacuum it up. You can use the same technique on carpets, rugs and drapes.
3. Repaint or Replace
In some cases, cigarette odor is so pervasive that it can’t be removed with simple cleaning methods. In this case, may want to consider repainting your home or replacing old, smelly carpets if the scent bothers you enough.
If you have tried the above steps and you still have an odor, try calling professional restoration services. They have the tools and expertise necessary to handle your home deodorization needs.
What Your Noisy Water Pipes Are Trying To Tell You
Water damage in a Franklin, NY home
What Your Noisy Water Pipes Are Trying To Tell You
Every house has its own set of familiar noises, like the creaking of floorboards or groaning of a settling foundation. However, the sounds coming from your water pipes may be a warning. While a whistling faucet may simply require a new washer to quiet down, if you have a hissing, whistling sound in multiple fixtures and a hammering noise coming from your pipes, you could be headed for a pipe break.
Residential water pressure is usually around 80 psi, but sometimes municipalities have to increase pressure for nearby non-residential facilities. When this happens in Franklin, KY, the increased water pressure can damage your home’s plumbing. In addition to the irritation of noisy pipes, high water pressure can:
- Erode pipes
- Reduce life expectancy of fixtures
- Increase water bills
- Result in leaks
- Cause a pipe burst
What’s Causing the Noises?
As a large amount of water is forced through fixture openings designed to handle a lower flow, it makes a whistling sound, just like forcing a large amount of air through pursed lips causes a whistling sound.
When water suddenly stops flowing through pipes, the momentum causes it to slam around inside the pipe, which causes a clanging or banging sound. Your plumbing has built-in air chambers to prevent this from happening, but when water pressure is higher than normal, the chambers aren’t enough to prevent the hammering sound. The longer you wait to address high water pressure in your home, the more likely it is to cause a pipe break.
What To Do About High Pressure
If you suspect your water pressure is too high, call a plumber in Franklin, KY, to test the pressure for you. A device called a pressure regulating valve, or PRV, can be installed to control the water pressure inside your home. Hiring a professional to prevent a pipe break is far preferable to hiring one to fix broken pipe inside your walls.
A Timeframe for Damage Restoration Response
SERVPRO a leading restoration company
Owners of homes that have sustained damage should start the mitigation and restoration process as soon as possible. Leading restoration companies are always open and can respond to a call, provide an on-site consultation, and offer a verbal briefing within a 24 hour window. Learn more about the timeframe for responding to any type of damage.
A fast call response within one hour is ideal for a mitigation and restoration service. The initial communication should cover the following information about damage:
The next step is scheduling a consultation. For the best results, homeowners should make this call within a 24 hour period after damage occurs.
Experts should arrive on location within four hours of a call response. These professionals can assess the degree of damage and recommend strategies to avoid additional damage. Homeowners should document damage for insurance purposes before taking any mitigation measures.
A company should provide a verbal briefing within eight hours of an on-site assessment. This briefing should provide an overview of the remediation process:
- Mitigation measures
- Cleaning methods
- Restoration timeline
Each of these factors will impact the duration of the cleanup and rebuilding process and the overall estimate. A one-stop shop can oversee this process from start to finish.
Estimate and Schedule
A company can then provide an estimate for homeowners to forward to their insurance provider. Depending on the cause and type of damage, an insurer may or may not cover losses. Limits may also apply. Homeowners should review the terms of their coverage prior to filing a claim.
A mitigation and restoration company should provide a fast response and clear description of mitigation and restoration procedures. It may also be possible to obtain mitigation services within a 24 hour period, such as boarding up or tarping over structural damage at a residence in Hopkinsville, KY.
3 Ways To Prevent Mold in a Humid Climate
Moldy office in Rusellville,KY
Three Steps to Reduce Mold Growth
Mold thrives in climates with high humidity levels. Commercial building owners and facilities managers can prevent mold damage by taking these three steps to reduce the likelihood of interior mold growth.
1. Lower Indoor Humidity Levels
Even if the humidity is high outside, it is possible to control interior levels. Run a dehumidifier to maintain an environment that is less likely to support mold growth. Proper ventilation and air filtration can also keep mold from growing. A HEPA air filtration device can capture spores as small as one to three microns.
2. Clean the Premises
Cleanliness can limit the food sources available to support mold. Fungus tends to grow in areas with dirt, dust, and other food sources that remain undisturbed. Mold can also thrive if food packaging or discarded items remain in trash containers for long periods of time. Encourage occupants to throw away food in trash cans that are emptied daily and avoid leaving coffee cups around work areas. It is also important to monitor places where condensation collects or high humidity persists. Regularly dry these areas, or consider ways to enhance the building envelope to prevent moisture from accumulating.
3. Select Mold-Resistant Materials
The right building materials can help to prevent mold from becoming a problem. Consider paint that contains mildewcides, mold-resistant drywall, or cleaning products designed to kill mold and prevent regrowth. In general, non-porous plastic, metal, and glass surfaces will be less likely to develop mold than materials that contain cellulose. Hard tile or laminate floors are also less likely to support mold than carpet or wood.
All of these methods can reduce the likelihood of mold growth becoming a problem in a building located in a climate that has high humidity levels. If you suspect that mold damage is present, contact a service that specializes in mold clean up and prevention in Rusellville, KY.
5 Reasons a Mitigation Company Should Complete a Rebuild
Franklin,KY business fire
Fire Damage Mitigation and Recovery Process
After a fire at a commercial building in Franklin,KY, a property owner may look for ways to speed up the fire damage mitigation and recovery process. Here are five reasons to work with a one-stop shop.
1. A Single Company Simplifies Insurance Claims
A disaster cleanup and fire mitigation company can provide an insurance adjuster with a quote for the cost of the overall recovery. The same specialists can provide updated estimates throughout the cleanup and repair process.
2. One Company Means One Schedule
There is no need to coordinate schedules when you hire one company for mitigation and restoration. If cleanup takes longer than expected, you won't have to worry about delays. You should also have a clearer sense of the length of the process.
3. A Single Company Can Prevent Crossed Wires
Hiring one service to clean up fire damage and another to complete restoration is likely to lead to miscommunication. Rather than worrying about whether both services are on the same page, hire a single company capable of completing both stages of the fire recovery process.
4. Simplify Payments to One Service
Rather than shuffling bills for the work of multiple specialists, pay a single firm for mitigation and restoration. In addition to simplifying the insurance claim process, this can also reduce stress and enable property owners to focus on re-opening for business.
5. Start the Process With a Single Call
Rather than calling around to multiple services, schedule an inspection with a one-stop shop. Cleanup and restoration work can also start with one inspection and without any break between phases.
If you are dealing with the aftermath of a fire at a commercial building in Franklin, KY, the last thing you need to be doing is juggling multiple fire damage cleanup and restoration companies. Make a single call to start the boarding up, fire mitigation, and restoration process.
Prepare to Deal With Water in Your Crawlspace
Keep your sump pump ready to go
Well-maintained equipment is worth its weight in gold, especially if it includes a sump pump and you've got two feet of water in your crawlspace! When heavy rains roll through, hurricanes threaten, or the surrounding soil doesn't drain well, your Rusellville, KY, property could be exposed to flooding. If storms leave you to deal with excess water or a pipe breaks and floods the basement, you want the peace of mind that comes with knowing you are prepared to quickly remove that water.
Home and commercial property owners may have sump pumps that sit unused for many months at a time. Keep your own sump and trash pump primed and ready to go with the following steps.
- Clean out the inlet screen.
- Visually inspect the power cord and make sure it's plugged in appropriately.
- Run a bucket of water through the pump to be sure the float rises, and the pump turns on.
- Remove the pump for thorough cleaning, inspection, and necessary repairs.
- Clean the pump.
- Perform required maintenance as described by the owner's manual. (If you don't have the manual, check online for this information by using the manufacturer's name and model numbers. You might also contact a sump pump maintenance professional for guidance.)
If your crawlspace does flood, take the following steps:
- Shut off the electricity to prevent the risk of electrocution.
- Make sure the sump and trash pump are running.
- Remove valuables from the crawlspace if you can do so safely.
- Check the vapor barrier to determine additional risk to your property.
- Take pictures of equipment and property and document the damage and your actions. This information will be shared with the insurance company.
Prevent Trouble in Crawlspaces
Crawlspaces are put under many homes because creating concrete pads is very expensive and don't allow for HVAC units, water systems, and sewage distribution. This cost-effective convenience requires some sacrifice, however. Make plans to keep your sump equipment well-maintained for safety and loss prevention during flooding.