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Restoring Your Home after Storm Damage

1/20/2023 (Permalink)

Blue tarp on a roof. If you experience storm damage to your Warwick home or business, give SERVPRO of East Greenwich/Warwick/Cranston a call today.

Storm damage is never fun, but it can be especially frustrating if you have limited experience with home repair. In order to understand how to restore your home after storm damage, you need to know what kind of damage has been done and how much work it might take to fix that damage. If you're not sure where to start or what needs repairing first, here are some tips:

Assessing the Damage

Assessing damage to your home after a storm can be a daunting task, but it is important to do so as soon as possible to prevent further damage and begin the process of making repairs. Here are some steps you can take to assess your home for damage: 

  • Check for structural damage: Look for any cracks or damage to the foundation, walls, or roof of your home. 
  • Inspect the roof: Look for any missing or damaged shingles, as well as any damage to the flashing or gutters.
  • Check for water damage: Look for any water stains on the walls, ceilings, and floors. 
  • Check for damage to your windows and doors: Look for any cracked or broken glass, as well as any damage to the frames or seals. 
  • Inspect your appliances: Check your appliances such as the refrigerator, washing machine and dryer, dishwasher, and HVAC system to ensure they have not been damaged by the storm.
  • Take photos or video of the damages: This can help when you are submitting an insurance claim.
  • Inspect your belongings: Take pictures of the damage. 

It's important to remember that it is always best to consult with a professional if you notice significant damage or if you are unsure about how to make repairs. 

Cleaning Up After a Flood

One of the first steps in restoring your home after storm damage is to remove all the standing water, wet furniture, appliances, and carpets. If your home has sustained damage from a flood, it's important to take action quickly to prevent further damage by removing wet items. You should also remove any wet insulation, drywall, and wood that was exposed during the flooding. 

Repairing or Replacing

If the damage is severe, you may need to replace the whole thing. If your home has been damaged by flooding, it's important to consult a professional before making any decisions about how to proceed. However, if you live in an area prone to stormy weather, there are resources available that can help you repair and restore your home after a storm.

Check with insurance companies about what type of coverage might be available for home repairs associated with storms. Your insurance company may provide money for repairing damage caused by environmental hazards such as flooding and storms.

Call Storm Cleanup Experts For Assistance

If you experience storm damage to your Warwick home or business, give SERVPRO of East Greenwich/Warwick/Cranston a call today. We will be out quickly to fix the problem and restore your structure and belongings to their preloss conditions.

Workplace Fire Prevention

12/13/2022 (Permalink)

preventive fire extinguisher training program, safety concept. Train employees on fire safety

5 Workplace Fire Safety Tips

Fires are among the most dangerous events that can happen to a business. They can cause massive property damage and put employees at risk of serious injury. To prevent fires and keep your employees safe, follow these five tips for workplace fire safety:

1. Train employees on fire safety

The first step in keeping your employees safe is knowing how to react when a fire starts, and that means they need to be trained on what to do.

  • Train all employees on how to evacuate the building safely and quickly.
  • Cover what equipment will help them if an evacuation isn't possible. This includes fire extinguishers, smoke masks, and self-rescue devices like ladders or ropes available in stairwells, etc.
  • Remind them about the importance of notifying you about any suspected hazards so that you can act immediately—and follow up with regular inspections just to be sure nothing has changed since you last checked it out!

2. Inspect fire exits and evacuation procedures regularly

Due to panic during an emergency situation, not everyone will follow evacuation procedures when there is an emergency. Therefore, it's important that you check that your staff knows what to do. A checklist can be used to ensure all fire exits are clear and the correct equipment is available.

  • Make sure the fire alarm system is working correctly by testing it at regular intervals
  • Check that all fire extinguishers are in good condition and regularly checked at least once a year
  • Ensure that any exit signage has remained in place and hasn't become obscured by furniture over time
  • Test emergency lighting systems regularly to make sure they are working properly

3. Select the right fire extinguisher for the job

The first step to choosing the right fire extinguisher for your workplace is to understand what type of fire you are most likely to be dealing with. This information can be found in the manufacturer's guidelines or on the label that comes with your particular extinguisher. 

4. Keep electronic devices and cables away from heat sources

  • Keep electronic devices and cables away from heat sources.
  • Don't put anything on top of electronic devices, like a laptop or a phone.
  • Be careful with lighting. If you're using candles, make sure they're in sturdy holders so they don't tip over when you move around your space or try to grab something off the table.

5. Plan ahead for business continuity

Planning for business continuity can help minimize disruption to your organization, customers, and employees. In the event of a fire or other emergency, following a plan will ensure that critical operations such as communications, human resources, and financial management are not interrupted.

A business continuity plan is a document that details how you intend to continue running your business if an emergency situation occurs. It should include: who will be responsible for what tasks; how the business will continue to operate; how you'll communicate with customers, etc.

Proper training and preparation is essential

Fires are a serious concern for any business owner. A fire can cause thousands of dollars in damage and disrupt your daily operations, but with proper training and preparation, you can prevent fires and keep your employees safe!

The most important thing to keep in mind is that you have the power to protect your employees and your business. By following these tips and staying aware of potential fire hazards, you can prevent fires from happening in the first place. If you do find yourself in a situation where a fire does break out, remember that everyone needs to evacuate calmly without panicking or rushing.

What are Flood Cuts?

11/9/2022 (Permalink)

Air mover against a drywall Flood cuts in East Greenwich property

How Do Flood Cuts Work?

Flood cuts are an important part of the home restoration process after water damage. They remove wet drywall from the walls so that mold can't grow on the surfaces or in the insulation behind it. Flood cuts are also used to remove damaged sheetrock and plaster, which will need to be replaced anyway once molds have been cleared out. This guide will explain what flood cuts are, how they work, and why you should use them after a water loss has damaged your home or business.

Flood cuts are used to remove wet drywall

Flood cuts are a common technique for water damage. Flood cuts are used to remove drywall that is wet from water damage. The process involves cutting away the drywall, removing it and installing new drywall in its place.

Flood cuts remove only the damaged portions of your walls and ceiling, including anything that has been affected by water damage. This means you're saving as much of your home's original material as possible while also getting rid of affected materials before mold can begin to spread throughout your home.

Water damage can lead to mold growth, which requires professional remediation. Flood cuts remove excess water from the wall, preventing it from entering your home's structure while providing an ideal environment for mold growth.

Flood cuts are usually the best course of action for homeowners.

Flood cuts are usually the best course of action for homeowners, as they allow you to make the most out of your insurance money and save the most important parts of your walls. A skilled contractor can help you know how far to cut and which walls are necessary for flood cuts.

Removing drywall is the best course of action when it comes to preventing mold growth after a water loss. Mold remediation will require removing drywall anyway, so flood cuts are usually the best course of action for homeowners. It may seem like an inconvenience at first glance but taking precautions now will save time later when working with contractors after cleaning work has been completed.

While flood cuts are labor intensive, they are a great way to remove moisture and moisture affected materials from your home. Flood cuts also allow you to make sure that there isn’t any mold growing in your walls before it becomes an issue. Mold remediation will require removing drywall anyway, so flood cuts are usually the best course of action for homeowners to prevent mold growth from spreading throughout your home. If you think your home may have been affected by flooding or other water damage, then call our SERVPRO of East Greenwich/Warwick/Cranston team today! Our team can help you with everything from water and mold removal to rebuilding after storms and floods. 

How a Fire Can Cause Water Damage In Your Business

10/7/2022 (Permalink)

Police department and firefighters present in a fire on a commercial building Water and fire damage cleanup

How a Fire Can Damage Your Business With Water

When a fire takes place, a lot of damage can occur. The majority of the damage can actually be caused by the water used to put out the fire. This water can damage your floorboards and drywall as well as your furniture and other personal belongings. It is important to get a solution to this problem as fast as possible.

When a fire takes place, a lot of damage can occur.

When a fire takes place, it can cause extensive damage to the structure as well as everything inside of it. Water used to put out the fire will also cause further damage in many cases. In addition to smoke damage and soot that gets into your walls and carpeting, water used by firefighters or in attempts to extinguish the flames can cause even more trouble. The water could leak into other rooms through cracks in walls or if part of your ceiling collapses onto another room below it. 

A fast cleanup prevents the water from spreading through your entire home.

Water damage is a serious problem. Water can quickly lead to mold and mildew, which pose several risks to your home or business. If you suspect that you have water damage, it's important to address the issue as soon as possible.

If you've experienced a fire in your home, it's critical to call an emergency restoration company right away. The longer you wait, the more likely it is that water will spread throughout the house through pipes and other connections between rooms. This makes cleanup more difficult—and therefore more expensive—for everyone involved!

The best way to prevent this type of damage is by having a plan in place ahead of time so that everything runs smoothly when something goes wrong.

Water damage cleanup can mitigate many of these problems.

After a fire, it is important to have the water damage cleaned up as soon as possible. Water damage can be especially destructive in a fire environment due to the high temperatures and chemicals that are present. If you wait too long, you could end up with mold growth or even electrical hazards which could cause further problems for your home's condition.

If you're worried about how much this process will cost you, don't worry! Often times professional companies will offer free estimates so that they can give you an idea of what they think it will take to complete your project before they start working on it. Companies such as SERVPRO will work with your insurance company to ensure that the entire claims process is taken care of from start to finish.

It is important to get a solution to this problem as fast as possible.

Water damage is a serious problem, and it should be treated as such. It is important to get a solution to this problem as fast as possible. Don’t wait for the water to dry out on its own; instead, contact your local SERVPRO team as quickly as possible. 

When this happens, you will want to hire professionals who specialize in treating water and fire-damaged properties so that they can help you get your home cleaned up appropriately before any lasting effects occur.

If you have any questions or comments about getting your home back in order after suffering from this type of damage, please do not hesitate to reach out! We are always happy to help our customers with whatever they need.

Getting the water and fire damage cleanup done quickly and correctly will help you avoid further problems down the line. It is important to take care of this problem as soon as possible because it can lead to mold growth if left untreated. If you want more information on how we can help with your water damage cleanup needs call us today!

The Effects of Mold on Commercial Buildings

8/31/2022 (Permalink)

Wall with spots of mold Mold contamination in Potowomut, RI.

It is not uncommon to find water damage in commercial buildings. If left unattended, this will provide mold the conditions it needs to grow. Any areas that provide moisture, nutrients, and darkness will give fungus an environment where it will thrive, causing damage to building materials. To prevent mold, it is important to check consistently for:

  • Water damage
  • Leaks
  • Moisture retention in HVAC systems

What Is Mold?

Mold is a member of the fungus kingdom. This species is an essential member of the ecosystem with the role of decaying natural materials. Mold spores are microorganisms that travel through the air and attach themselves to materials that provide them the right nutrients and living conditions. Given these, they develop into colonies, feeding off of and decomposing their host.

Why is Mold Dangerous for Buildings?
Mold's function in the wild to decompose waste favors greatly for the ecosystem. However, it can cause severe damage in commercial buildings in Potowomut, RI, where it will gradually decompose natural building materials. If left unattended, mold damage will make some materials irreparable. Fungus should not be allowed to dwell on building materials to prevent damage costs from adding up.

Is Mold Preventable?
You cannot prevent mold from traveling into buildings, but there are ways to minimize the potential for its growth. Mold prevention includes controlling the moisture levels in a building to reduce favorable environments for mold, especially in areas where running water is frequent. Inspecting HVAC drip pans regularly to ensure they are not plugged will also help to minimize its growth. Regularly search commercial buildings for any leaks and repair them immediately to prevent damages.
If your building has been affected by water damage and unattended mold growth, a mold remediation service will help to clean and restore the property. It is important to clear buildings of any mold upon finding it to prevent unexpected costs for repairs.

Taking Care of a Roof Leak

8/29/2022 (Permalink)

Hole on ceiling, Building collapsed by storm, collapsed buildings Damaged roof in an Apponaug, RI building

Take Action and Consider the Following Three Tips

When the storm blew through Apponaug, RI, the intense, high winds potentially hurt the building's exterior, in particular creating a roof leak. These are not always obvious, often appearing down the road only weeks after water has built up in the ceiling. As a business owner, you'll want to have the rooftop inspected and repaired as soon as possible, avoiding major problems and potential shut downs. Protect your establishment. Take action, and consider the following three tips.

1. Get an Inspection
As soon as the system finishes, contact a roofer to look over the top, seeking any cracks, holes or missing shingles. These weaknesses need immediate attention, covered with a tarp to avoid additional water absorption. At this point, a water remediation team should be called and asked to evaluate any trouble. You'll need to understand how much moisture entered the ceiling and the rooms underneath. Tests can be done, determining humidity exposure as well as mold development.

2. Secure and Clear the Area
While the outside is tested, begin looking for any internal complications deriving from the roof leak. Is the carpet soggy? Are walls or ceiling tiles showing stains? Notify the crew of any issues. Then, work with them to safely remove electronics and furniture from the rooms, avoiding further loss. Do not allow others to enter; in fact, post signs warning of issues.

3. Seek Water Restoration
Your experts need to tear out any water-logged structure from the damaged roof. The section is repaired, and then the location needs to be dried thoroughly to avoid microbial growth. With that completed, cleaning occurs, along with an application of antimicrobial spray. Finally, the team begins to tackle repairing anything else that was ruined. Ceiling tiles and drywall get patched, and a fresh coat of paint is applied.
It's important to check for a roof leak anytime a severe storm passes through. By finding and fixing damage early, your company can minimize destruction.

Renters Insurance and Fire Damage

8/24/2022 (Permalink)

Renters Insurance Policy Having renters insurance is important to more easily take on the unexpected.

Savvy renters in West Warwick, RI, know the importance of having renters insurance. If the unexpected happens, it provides peace of mind that your belongings will be covered. Since every policy may be a little different, it is important to thoroughly understand it, especially when it comes to having to make a fire damage claim.

The Basics

In general, there are three types of available coverage:

Personal Property – Damaged belongings
Additional Living Expenses – Costs for temporary relocation
Liability – Damage afflicted to another person

In situations such as a fire, renters insurance is vital for replacing your damaged belongings. Whether the fire was accidentally started during cooking or spread from another apartment, most insurers will cover items directly affected by the fire. It’s also important to understand that any structural damage will not be covered by this policy. The property manager or landlord will have their own insurance to cover those repairs.

Additional Living Expenses
The other important reason for having your own insurance is the potential need to temporarily relocate. If the damage was significant enough, fire restoration by a fire and smoke damage restoration company may not be a quick process. If you have to live somewhere else for a while, the costs can quickly add up. Even having to stay at a hotel for a few days and eat out can result in a lot of unexpected expenses. If the damage is enough to force a permanent move, the policy may also cover costs associated with the move. Other expenses covered may include the cost of doing laundry, furniture rental, storage costs and pet boarding. Again, how much will be covered is dependent on the policy and amount of coverage you have paid for.
A lot of unknowns can happen inside and outside the home. Even if you are a renter, having renters insurance is important to more easily take on the unexpected.

4 Ways to Prevent Damage During a Flood

7/29/2022 (Permalink)

Sandbags for flood defense Use sandbags near doors and windows to keep moisture at bay.

Four Strategies to Avoid Damage During a Flood

Storms and bad weather in Cowesett, RI, can cause flooding which can damage your home. This type of damage can be severe, so it is best to prepare as much as you can. The following are a few things that you can do to help minimize the impact of this water on your house.

1. Inspect Your Home
If your house is already damaged, this can make any storm damage you experience even worse. Cracks in the exterior of the building and deteriorated door and window frames can allow moisture inside. If this happens, you could be dealing with mold growth and rotting materials later on. Perform a thorough inspection if you are expecting a storm, and make any necessary repairs.

2. Move Important Items
Flood damage will affect your belongings as well as the structure of your building. Absorbent materials and electronics can be permanently damaged if water enters your home. If your house has multiple levels, move anything you can to a higher floor. Otherwise, place important items on shelves and in airtight containers, if possible.

3. Clean Drains and Gutters
Leaves and debris can clog your gutters, making it more difficult for water to drain properly during a storm. This can cause the water to back up and cause damage to the walls and roof of the building. These should be cleaned regularly and kept clear.

4. Use Sandbags
While you may not be able to keep it from flooding, you can reduce the amount of water that enters your house. Use sandbags near doors and windows to keep moisture at bay. These will absorb water and help keep it from filling your home.
Using these tips can help you limit the impact that flooding has on your home. However, there may still be some damage. If this is the case, a clean up and restoration service can help. They can remove water from the building and perform repairs on your house and belongings.

3 Signs That You Have a Water Leak

7/23/2022 (Permalink)

Mold growth on a drywall If you notice a musty smell in your building, you probably have mold growing.

3 Signs That You Have a Water Leak

It's hard to pin down every single factor that affects the variable expenses in your commercial property in Apponaug, RI. It's normal for utility bills to fluctuate with usage. When you notice a big change, however, it is indicative of a specific problem. If you see any of these three signs, you probably have a water leak.

1. Large Utility Bill

A huge spike in your water bill means you are suddenly using a lot more water than you have before. A pipe break or leaking faucet can go undetected for weeks, especially if there are no visible signs. Even a small leak that hasn't done noticeable damage to walls, floors or ceiling tiles can cost a lot of money. The increase in your bill may be the first sign that anything is wrong.

2. Continually Running Meter

There are many reasons to keep an eye on your water meter. One of those reasons is that it can tell you if there is an unusual amount of water being used in your building. A meter that won't stop running even when there's no one in the building is a clear symptom of a water leak.

3. Musty Odor

A long-term leak leads to water damage. If left unchecked, it can also cause secondary damage such as mold growth. If you notice a musty smell in your building, you probably have mold growing somewhere, indicating the presence of water where it's not supposed to be. Water mitigation specialists can locate the problem and propose the best solution to deal with all the damage that the leak is causing.
A water leak isn't always obvious as soon as it happens. Sometimes, the first sign that you have a problem is an exorbitant water bill. If you notice this or any other sign of a leak, get it fixed as soon as possible to avoid other problems.

Bread Is One of Mold’s Favorite Foods

7/18/2022 (Permalink)

Bread with mold Virtually everyone has experienced bread mold

One of Mold's Favorite Foods Is Bread

Virtually everyone has experienced bread mold. It won’t take long for a loaf of bread sitting in a pantry to develop mold, especially in warm and humid environments. There are some good, scientific reasons why bread is so attractive to mold:

  • It has a near-ideal moisture level for mold development
  • The basic ingredients of bread are perfect for mold growth
  • Most bread is kept in a warmer location, like a cabinet, which favors mold growth.

Mold Is a Form of Fungus

Fungus is essential to the functioning of the world. It’s actually neither a plant nor an animal, but instead is in its own biological classification, called a kingdom. These life forms can’t produce their own food like plants or go hunting for it, like animals. Instead, they live on other forms of life, leeching their nutrients directly from whatever it’s living on. Without fungi, virtually nothing in nature would ever decompose.

Fungus Growth Can Be Slowed But At A Cost

There are some steps you can take to prevent bread mold, but they will impact the flavor somewhat. Most commercial bakeries use calcium propionate as a preservative. It retards the growth of mold and other microorganisms, extending the shelf life of food products. The FDA says it’s “generally safe to eat,” which is good because it’s used a lot. However, some studies have indicated that it may cause irritation in a small number of children. It may also cause headaches for some individuals, and some people say it affects the flavor of food.
To slow the growth of bread mold in homemade baked goods, you can store leftovers in the refrigerator. Inside the fridge, mold growth will be substantially slowed. However, it also tends to dry out the bread and reduce the natural flavor. Like many things in life, it’s a trade-off, but at least it’s a reasonable option.
If you have mold damage in your home, talk to a local mold remediation company in West Warwick, RI, about getting an inspection and starting the cleanup process. Once mold starts growing on building materials, you’ll really need an expert to determine the scope of the infestation.