Recent Posts

Fire Prevention and Preparedness for Pets

5/20/2019 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Fire Prevention and Preparedness for Pets Create a pet fire safety kit with medical supplies

Your pets are an important part of your family, and you surely would do whatever you can to keep them from harm’s way. To help keep your pet and the rest of your family safe from the dangers of a home fire, here are several important steps you should take to prevent and prepare your pet for the possibility of a fire emergency in your home in Falmouth, ME.

Pet Fire Prevention

Like young children, your pets are not always aware of their surroundings and that their actions can result in a fire. Here are a few pet safety tips for preventing a fire:

  • Don’t leave pets unattended near space heaters or an open flame
  • Secure electrical cords that your dog might chew on
  • Remove stove knobs or use safety covers
  • Consider flameless candles or other candle alternatives

Pet Fire Preparedness

Once you have set up your home to help your pets from starting a fire emergency, you then need to start on your pet preparation and fire escape plan. When developing an evacuation plan with your family, identify which member of the family will be responsible for helping your pets get to safety, and make sure your dog comes when called.

Create a pet fire safety kit with medical supplies you might need to help your pet, some treats, and a leash or carrier. Also, add a pet alert window cling to a front window with information on all of your pets so firefighters can quickly find them.

While the tips in this guide can help you prevent a fire emergency and provide you with a plan for helping your pet if one does ever does occur, make sure to you don’t delay your escape if saving your pet isn’t possible. Once out of the house, never reenter until after firefighters extinguish the fire and the fire damage assessment team says your home is safe to enter.

3 Steps Property Managers Should Take Before a Storm

5/9/2019 (Permalink)

Storm Damage 3 Steps Property Managers Should Take Before a Storm Heavy limbs from overhanging trees can fall on a building and cause roof damage

3 Steps That Can Reduce the Risk to Severe Storm Damage

Property managers should make storm preparedness one of their top priorities. These three steps can reduce the risk that severe storm damage resulting from hail, heavy rain, flooding, high winds or winter weather poses to a commercial building in Portland, ME.

1. Clear Drainage

A drainage system that is blocked or improperly designed can cause rain to work its way under roofing materials or accumulate around the foundation of a structure. If a roof has sustained damage from hail, ice or winds, leaks may be even more likely. Property managers should have the entire system, from roof drains to gutters and downspouts, cleared out several times a year to ensure proper drainage.

2. Trim Trees

Heavy limbs from overhanging trees can fall on a building and cause roof damage or become flying debris during storms with high wind speeds. It is a good idea for a property manager to schedule periodic tree care as part of a general storm preparedness plan. Arborists and tree care professionals can remove damaged, dead or overhanging branches that could result in serious damage to a structure.

3. Secure Items

Loose exterior items such as antennas, HVAC components, outdoor seating or trash cans can sustain damage or become flying debris depending on the severity of a storm. Some items can be anchored outside when high winds are expected. Other items should be stowed for the duration of a storm.

These storm preparedness steps may be helpful for property management at any commercial building in Portland, ME. Depending on the most probable weather risks, other measures such as the installation of storm windows and purchasing and setting up reusable sandbag alternatives may be effective ways to limit storm damage. If adverse weather affects the exterior or interior of any structure, mitigation and restoration specialists can assess the damage and start water removal within a matter of hours.

High Risk Flood Problems: What To Do

4/26/2019 (Permalink)

Storm Damage High Risk Flood Problems: What To Do If you live in a Flood Hazard Area, FEMA NFIP coverage may be available to you

FEMA NFIP Coverage

Is your home at high risk for flooding? If you recently learned that you live in a Flood Hazard Area or Special Flood Hazard Area, you may be unclear on what your protection plan should be or how to get FEMA NFIP coverage. Here are four steps you should take to get started.

1. Contact your insurance agent. You may want or need to purchase flood insurance to protect against potential flooding damage to your home, so the first thing that you should do after finding out you live in a high-risk flood zone is contact your insurance company to see what flood coverage you are eligible for.

2. If you need more help, visit FloodSmart.gov. This website provides homeowners like you with valuable resources regarding flood insurance and can even help you find an agent if your current insurance company cannot help you get coverage.

3. Learn about FEMA’S National Flood Insurance Program. If you live in a Flood Hazard Area, FEMA NFIP coverage may be available to you. Check with your local floodplain administrator to see if your community participates in this voluntary federal program. If it doesn’t, you do not need to meet federal coverage requirements.

4. Familiarize yourself with Munjoy Hill, ME, cleanup services. No matter how well you prepare for a potential flood, water damage is still a possibility that you need to be ready for. A reliable residential storm damage company can help you figure out a cleanup plan and begin to restore your property to the best of its ability.

Nobody wants to prepare for the worst, but living a high-risk flood area often forces you to do so. Learning about FEMA NFIP and other insurance options, as well as contacting local professionals that can help you with insurance and cleanup needs, will make it easier for you to keep your property secure in the long run.

How To Stop the Nonstop Flushing

4/17/2019 (Permalink)

Water Damage How To Stop the Nonstop Flushing If you have a toilet that won’t stop running call a professional.

Commercial toilets are prone to quirks and constant maintenance, likely due to their continual usage. One of the more common issues is that of nonstop flushing which may occasionally lead to toilet overflow. The seemingly endless flushing is often caused by sediment in the gasket and a blocked weeping hole. The fix, thankfully, is quite simple.

1. Turn Off the Water

Before you can clean the gasket, you will need to turn off the water, which not only prevents a possible toilet flood, it also keeps you dry during the repair process. There should be a screwdriver slot somewhere along the handle shaft. Turn the screw to stop the water supply.

2. Remove Lid and Flange Cover

Using a wrench, you can remove the lid from the flange cover. Once the bolt on top is loose, you can remove it and the now exposed flange cover. You will likely notice a lot of sediment on the gasket which has been instigating your toilet overflow.

3. Clean the Gasket and Weep Hole

To stop a toilet from perpetual flushing, you will need to clean the gasket by first removing it and then running it under the faucet. Make sure that all debris is clear and that the weeping hold is visible and unclogged. You can use a pin or something small to free any potential blockages before returning the gasket.

4. Call a Professional If Problem Persists

If sediment is not the problem, then you may need to call a plumbing specialist in the West Falmouth, ME, area to inspect the toilet and the lines. While a thorough cleaning is often what is needed, there are times when the fixture needs to be replaced, or when there are other issues in the lines.

Commercial toilets require continuous maintenance to prevent toilet overflow and ensure functionality. If you have a toilet that won’t stop running, then try cleaning the gasket, but if that doesn’t work, then turn to the professionals.

How To Address Mold in Your Multifamily Units

4/10/2019 (Permalink)

Commercial How To Address Mold in Your Multifamily Units If you have mold problems you need professionals like SERVPRO. We'll make it "Like it never even happened."

When you own commercial housing properties, you don’t always have a lot of control for the problems that occur within each unit. You must rely on tenants to report problems in a timely manner so that you can take care of them. If you need mold cleanup in your building in Gorham, ME, it’s important to know how to handle the problem responsibly.

Quick Response

As soon as your tenant tells you that mold spores have formed a growth on their walls or under their sink, you should respond as soon as you get the message. If you do not respond quickly to their request for mold mitigation services, you could end up being held liable for:

  • Reduced rent for the time it takes to resolve the problem
  • Replacement costs of damages caused to the tenant’s property
  • Legal fees
  • Civil penalties

The sooner you can start the mold cleanup process, the better off you will be. Not only does this communicate to your tenants that you care about them and your relationship with them, but it also fixes the problem before it gets too out of hand.

Proper Documentation

When you have mold contamination in your building, you may end up filing a claim with your insurance company. Mold claims can be difficult to get approved, so it’s important to document the problem well. Keep all evidence of correspondence with tenants and the remediation company to show the timeline of your response. Take pictures and videos to show exactly how extensive the damage is. Be prepared to provide an itemized list of the tasks and expenses involved in the restoration process.

As the building owner, you have a responsibility to your tenant to provide reasonable maintenance. This includes mold cleanup whenever necessary. Responding quickly to reports of mold growth and keeping accurate records of the cleanup process is how you fulfill that responsibility.

What to Know About Storm Restoration

4/4/2019 (Permalink)

Storm Damage What to Know About Storm Restoration Storms can cause severe Damage in local Portland, ME properties. You may need storm remediation when dealing with flooding, roof damage or roof leaks.

When it comes to storm damage in Portland, ME you need professionals dealing with storm remediation. There are so many different things that go into home restoration that is the result of storm damage in your area, so be sure to contact a local professional who deals specifically with storm remediation.

Whether you are dealing with a significant amount of flooding, roof damage, hail damage, ice damage or even roof leaks, you need storm remediation. There is a reason why a lot of people are currently contacting home restoration experts specializing in storm remediation. These professionals come to your home with their own flood pumps and tools to get rid of the ground water, flooding, River flooding and flood water that is currently causing frozen pipes and Ice damming to form.

Why should we contact a Storm Restoration professional?

Storm Damage can leave behind a lot of problems once the storm has passed, and this is why storm damage involves so much cleanup. Whether you are looking for water restoration due to River flooding or residential flooding or you need professional roof repair done because you have a significant amount of roof damage and roof leaks due to wind damage or hail damage, you need to contact a Storm Restoration professional.

Home restoration and water restoration involves a variety of different skills and tools necessary, especially when you are dealing with a lot of river flooding in your area or have residential flooding due to frozen pipes, ice damming or hail damage.

Storm Restoration and home restoration as well as high quality water restoration is more than just using a professional flood pump. You are going to need to have the storm damage restored by professionals dealing specifically with storm damage, wind damage and even roof damage.

If you have any questions, please give us a call at (207) 772-5032

SERVPRO of Portland is ready to respond inmediately, we are prepared for local storm damage and are able to bring the expertise and equipment necessary to get the job done. 

The Importance of IICRC Certification in the Restoration Industry

3/24/2019 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO The Importance of IICRC Certification in the Restoration Industry SERVPRO is certified with the IICRC for water, fire, and mold damage.

IICRC Certification

Restoration industry standards are set by the Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification Board. It is a non-profit group overseeing the qualification of the restoration, remediation and cleaning trade. When a technician obtains a program mitigation certificate from the IICRC, he or she is held to the highest standards. Not only does this keep industry standards high, but it also establishes a recognized national standard, and that is why insurance agents and adjusters keep the graduates on their preferred vendor's lists. Here are a few of the values the technicians are expected to uphold.

1. Respect

Technicians are taught that working with clients and staff that everyone treats respectfully can elevate the job site. It can also help bring out natural abilities and let inborn qualities shine.

2. Integrity

Valuing integrity, the expectation is that all graduating technicians will have strong ethical principles. Dealing honestly and upholding high values is important in developing an honorable reputation within the cleaning and restoration industry.

3. Responsibility

Once at a job, all IICRC technicians are expected to work as if the property were their own. This includes completing the job promptly and using the best tools available to finish the job.

4. Excellence

Service, leadership, and duty are all part of what the graduate is expected to bring to the office each day. Technicians are also taught to hold high standards in service, on the job and off.

5. Expertise

To keep standards, values, and expertise high, the board continues to hold classes to improve industry knowledge. As new and improved tools become available, they are incorporated into the classes. Also, certification is a lifelong process of self-improvement and gaining professional knowledge. Technicians must obtain 14 hours of education every four years.

The IICRC helps hold trained technicians of the cleaning and restoration industry to a high standard. That may be why the insurance agent’s preferred vendor lists in Gorham, ME, are filled with program graduates.

3 Steps for Safely Handling a Flooded Basement

3/14/2019 (Permalink)

Water Damage 3 Steps for Safely Handling a Flooded Basement If you have flood damage call SERVPRO

How To Handle Flooded Basement

Whether your flooded basement is the result of torrential rain, a broken dam, or melting winter snows, the result is almost always the same: unwanted standing water. Here are three steps for safely handing your basement flood.

1. Switch Off the Utilities

Turning off the electricity or gas to your home may be a problem if your home’s breaker box or meter is in the basement. If so, contact the utility companies and request they turn the power and gas off. Turning the utilities off before you begin any cleanup effort can help ensure your work environment is a safe one.

2. Locate a Professional Team

Many people panic when they find their Portland, ME, basement floor flooded with water. The loss of stored items, children’s bedrooms, or an extra living area with all the sundry additional items those rooms entails, can be upsetting. Calling in a professional water mitigation team can help you make sure your damaged basement has insurance coverage because the professionals often document everything they do. They can also help save as many of the basement floodwater-damaged items as possible because the knowledgeable team can help you tell the difference between what can be saved and what should probably be thrown away.

3. Remove the Standing Water

The first thing the water damage team will typically do is remove the standing water and investigate for signs of structural damage. Water removal is important because standing water can:

  • Encourage mold growth
  • Cause foundation damage
  • Ruin walls and insulation

Once the water is gone, the team can begin cleaning and disinfecting the area, and, if needed, technicians can generally begin rebuilding the damaged areas.

A flood in your home can be devastating. Don’t let it paralyze you; instead, take the above three steps to help minimize the damage of any basement flood. You can fight back when you have a professional water mitigation team on your side.

Facts About Black Mold

3/6/2019 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO Facts About Black Mold If you smell something musty, you may have black mold in your home.

A strong, musty odor is a tell-tale sign that you need to hire a certified mold specialist to assess your home. One of the things a mold inspection can tell you is if your problem is black mold. There are several misconceptions about this particular strain of fungus. Clearing up this confusion can help you better understand what steps need to be taken to fix the problem.

Appearance

Contrary to popular belief, Stachybotrys is not always black. Its appearance can take on several different attributes:

  • Black, gray or green tint
  • Slimy texture
  • Dampened concentration

Because this type of mold tends to be denser than others, it is less likely to spread quickly in the air. It can grow exponentially once it has attached to a surface and has sufficient moisture and organic matter to feed it, though.

Location

Mold often grows in places that you can't see. When a water leak dampens the area inside your walls or above your ceiling tiles, for example, the mold growth you smell may be hidden behind them. Stachybotrys is particularly prone to these areas because they are high in cellulose fibers and low in nitrogen. A professional mold inspection can help locate the mold even if you can't see it.

Remediation

If you have house mold in Portland, ME, you probably need to contact experts to address the problem. Trying to handle the issue yourself can make it worse. If you try to take out affected drywall without first closing off the surrounding area, you may end up spreading the mold into your air ducts or other areas of the home. Certified specialists are trained to go through every necessary step of the remediation process to resolve the problem efficiently.

If you smell something musty, you may have black mold in your home. A mold inspection can help pinpoint the problem, and professional remediation can solve it.

5 Ways SERVPRO Serves You Best

2/20/2019 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO 5 Ways SERVPRO Serves You Best SERVPRO of Portland is here to help!

SERVPRO Serves You Best

Assessing a claim from a client can be a complicated process. You don’t need the vendor that performs the restoration to throw a proverbial wrench in the mix. If you are an insurance adjuster in Portland, ME , SERVPRO is provides up-to-date information and keeps costs as low as possible.

1. Nationwide Support

While your client may just be working with the local franchise, you have the backing of the company’s national resources. These include:

  • Call center
  • Standardized quality requirements
  • Exemplary record-keeping

2. Commitment to Restoration

While many remediation companies may default to tearing out and replacing materials, most insurance companies want to work with certified restoration experts who seek first to restore the existing structure and materials. Each item is tested to see if it’s salvageable to cut down on costs.

3. Accessible Records

As the insurance adjuster assigned to a case, you have access to the Claims Information Center. This is a record of all the documentation associated with your client’s claim, including photos of the damage, response time a detailed estimate of the final cost of repairs.

4. Immaculate Itemization

In addition to online records, you receive an itemized list of everything that needs to be replaced. This information is crucial to assessing the insurance claim made by your client.

5. Professional Service

SERVPRO technicians complete an IICRC-certified training program. As methods improve in the industry, they participate in ongoing education to ensure that they provide the highest standard of mitigation services. You can depend on your local franchise to respond quickly to your client’s call and start repairs in a timely manner. This minimizes the damage and, ultimately, your final cost.

An insurance adjuster is often the first person to assess the damage to a client’s home. The professional knowledge and experience of qualified restoration specialists can prove to be invaluable resources during this process. When it comes to assessing your client’s claim, SERVPRO is Here to Help.