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Can You Save Your Carpet From Water Damage?

3/20/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Can You Save Your Carpet From Water Damage? Carpet Water Loss in Rhode Island Home

If your Providence, RI, home was recently involved in a flood or if you are currently dealing with the aftermath of a pipe break, you may be asking yourself if it’s possible to save your carpet. The answer is that it all depends. Whether or not your flooring is salvageable depends on a few factors, including:

• The type of water to invade your home
• How long the water was allowed to sit before you began restoration efforts
• The size of the area affected

If you want to know whether or not you can save your flooring and the pad beneath after a water incident, consider the information presented to you in this post.

The Type of Water Involved

If the cause of your water damage is a pipe break, then chances are that the water is clean and does not pose a health risk to you and your loved ones. However, if the damage is the result of sewage overflow or backup, the water may be black water, in which case even professional restoration efforts may not be able to save your carpet.

How Long the Water Was Allowed to Sit

Mold typically sets in within 24 and 48 hours. If you did not begin cleanup efforts within that time frame, you should consider pulling out the wet flooring and replacing it with new materials. Even if there is not mold, the moisture could cause irreparable damage to your flooring.

The Size of the Affected Area

If the affected area is large, it may be costlier to invest in remediation efforts than to just replace the flooring entirely. Talk to your Providence, RI, water remediation team about pricing and to your insurance agency about what they will and will not cover.

Often, carpet is salvageable after a pipe break or storm damage, but you should never just assume that your flooring is okay. The best way to know for sure is to hire a storm restoration team and have them perform an assessment, or you can review the information on the IICRC’s website.

Visit us at for more information.

How To Protect Your Business From Storm Damage

3/12/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial How To Protect Your Business From Storm Damage Commercial Water Loss

A flooded building can wreak havoc on your business operations. If flood water is a real concern in Providence, RI, it is important to do what you can now so that your business property is better protected later. Here's how you can protect your property from water damage.

Preparing Your Building

Before a flood even occurs, you can take steps to seal your building from water. Start by applying a waterproof coating to the exterior walls. Several other steps are also important.

" Install waterproof shields over windows and doors where possible.
" Strengthen walls to stand against the pressure of flood water or flood debris.
" Seal all areas where utilities enter the building.
" Anchor the building if necessary.

Protecting the Lower Levels

Inspect your basement and first floor to ensure there are no areas where flood water can easily enter the premises. Regrade any land that slopes into your property, extend or redirect gutter spouts and repair any cracks in the walls. Move any valuable equipment or furniture to higher ground and create digital backups of any important paper documentation.

Taking Other Safety Measures

Water damage is not the only thing to worry about during flooding. It is also important to properly anchor any fuel tanks to prevent the water from sweeping them away, which can cause the lines to break and fires or explosions to happen. Sewer backflow valves are also important.

Preparing for Restoration

No matter how well you prepare your building for a flood, at least some damage is still likely to occur. Call a well-respected restoration company to help you remove moisture, dry materials and get your property ready to do business again.

Being 100 percent prepared for a natural disaster is practically impossible, but preparing now for a later storm means getting back into the swing of things as quickly as possible after any damage happens.

How to Handle Mold Damage Until Help Arrives

2/27/2018 (Permalink)

Taking Charge of Black Mold

It might be your first instinct to try and take charge of a black mold problem in your Federal Hill, RI, business. However, mold cleanup should be left to certified professionals who know how to manage the situation when it’s out of control. If you’ve come across a lingering odor in your building or moisture problem that quickly escalated into extensive mold growth, it’s time to consider fast mitigation. Here are a few tips on how you can handle mold damage until experienced help arrives to clear the area.

1. Turn off your company’s HVAC system. The problem with mold is that even if you’ve found only a small designated area where growth seems to be spreading, the airflow through your HVAC system could be carrying spores all across the building. Leave the air off until trained experts have a chance to investigate the issue and act accordingly. Let them give you the signal when it’s acceptable to turn it back on.

2. Shut off the water until the leak or water damage is contained. High humidity and elevated moisture in an enclosed space create prime breeding grounds for black mold to reproduce and disperse. If a moisture issue has been detected and the fungus is thriving off the source, shutting off the water can halt the flow to the mold and stop causing greater damage to your business.

3. Don’t touch or disturb the moldy area and stay out of the infected space. Breathing in mold spores or touching the actual mold itself can be dangerous. Avoid these possibilities by staying out of the room. If other employees are present, instruct everyone to keep their distance as well until the professionals arrive.

When a moisture problem hits your business in Federal Hill, RI, and black mold pops up unexpectedly as a result, it’s best to leave it alone. Contact proper remediation specialists to handle the mold cleanup and stay out of their way until the office is habitable again.

Can Your Electronics Be Saved After a Fire?

2/13/2018 (Permalink)

Whether the fire that damaged your structure was an electrical fire or was caused by another source, your electronics are sure to have sustained some damage, both soot and burn related. If you’re worried about the cost of replacing an entire building’s worth of electronics, don’t panic just yet, as some of your equipment may be salvageable.

Some items that may have been a casualty to your building’s fire include:

• Tablets
• Smartphones
• Laptops and desktops
• Servers, printers and copiers
• Small and large appliances

No matter what the item is, there are a few suggestions you should keep in mind if you want to ensure the highest possible recovery rate of your electronics:

• Leave Your Electronics Off: You may be tempted to try and boot up your entire system after a fire in order to assess the damage, but doing so could be the worst thing you do. Electronics that are heavily covered in soot need to be thoroughly cleaned of smoke residue, otherwise they could short and disrupt other system functions. Those that were sprayed with water need to be completely dry before you attempt to turn them on.

Reach Out to a Computer Cleanup Crew in Hope, RI: All electronics that were touched by fire, smoke, soot or water need to be assessed and cleaned from the inside out. You should never do this on your own as you may end up causing further damage. A professional fire cleanup crew understands the proper way to restore electronics without causing a complete meltdown or another electrical fire.

Find Your Warranties: In the worst-case scenario, an electronic device cannot be recovered. Fortunately, that is what warranties are for. Figure out which items you had warranties on and contact those manufacturers about receiving a replacement.

If an electronic device cannot be saved and if a warranty doesn’t cover fire or smoke damage, you may be able to recover compensation for the damaged item from your insurance agency. However, make sure that your policy covers electrical fire.

What You Need To Know About Putting Out a Grease Fire

2/6/2018 (Permalink)

More often than not, if you experience a fire in the kitchen, it’s probably a grease fire.

These fires are significantly different than other fires you’re likely to encounter throughout your life and require different steps to eliminate properly and safely. In fact, failing to use the proper measures when dealing with this type of threat can lead to several poor outcomes:

• Further expansion of the fire
• An explosion that spreads fire and hot grease more quickly
• Failure to impact the fire in any way

By knowing the steps to take and consulting the proper sources, you can prevent your home from becoming one of the thousands that are destroyed by these fires in the US each year.

Turn Off the Heat Source

The first thing you should do when a grease fire starts is turn off the heat source. This can help eliminate further damage from occurring. Then, attempt to cover any remaining flames with a metal pan or lid to smother them. In some cases, this may be the end of your firefighting needs, but that’s typically only if you catch the issue at the very beginning.

Use the Right Extinguishing Tools

Never, ever attempt to use water to put out a grease fire. When cool water comes in contact with flaming-hot oil, it can cause an explosion, which could both seriously injure you and spread the fire further into your kitchen. Instead, use baking soda to smother small flares, and use a class B dry chemical fire extinguisher as a last resort.

Know When To Leave

Sometimes, you won’t be able to put out a fire yourself. If your efforts fail to stop or slow down the fire in your kitchen, get yourself, your family and your pets out and call for emergency services in Providence, RI.

Of course, it’s always best to try and prevent a grease fire from occurring. If you do experience one of these fires in your kitchen, you should waste no time in calling 911, your insurance company and a cleanup crew.

Homeowner Water Damage Tips after a storm

12/7/2017 (Permalink)

Water damage coverage in a homeowner’s insurance policy, and even renter insurance, has changed over the years. It is helpful to review your policy annually, to understand what is covered and what may have changed from previous years.

Normally, these conditions would be covered by an insurance policy.

  • Burst water pipes and water heaters
  • Sudden or accidental overflow of a toilet, tub, or sink
  • Sewer backup from drains and sump pumps (there may be a relatively low policy limit)

Most existing homeowner policies probably don’t cover the following conditions:

  • Ground flooding
  • Slow, dripping leaks
  • Overflowing streams or rivers 

Regular maintenance is required for a roof, such as replacing shingles or tiles and keeping the roof cleared from debris, and this regular upkeep is a determining factor in insurance claims. However, inside content damage from a roof leak might be covered by your policy.

Slow, dripping leaks, such as those from an incorrectly installed toilet, sink, shower or bathtub are usually not covered. Whenever something is considered maintenance-related, chances are the insurance expects that you properly maintain your dwelling.

Flood damage from an overflowing river or nearby body of water might be covered, depending on the area where you live. Homeowner policies have changed greatly over the years, especially if the property is located on or near a water table. An additional flood insurance policy is usually required, because a normal homeowner policy will not cover damages resulting from a flood of this type.

Usually, an insurance investigator will determine if the water damage is a result of negligence or lack of maintenance. After they ask you questions about the problem, they usually schedule an appointment at your home to physically inspect the damage and where it originated from.

If you have sudden water damage, call SERVPRO of Providence, we can assist with coordinating the insurance claim, and when the underlying cause is proven to be insurance-related, we will work with the adjuster for inspections, proper repairs, and restoring your home again. SERVPRO of Providence staff knows how to handle insurance claims and perform the repairs needed on your home.

Tips for handling a large storm

12/7/2017 (Permalink)

Hurricanes, snow storms and wild weather can wreak havoc in big, densely populated cities and towns. Trees can crash down on power lines and cars. Windows can get blown out. Long lines can form for bread, milk, eggs and fuel. Electrical power and gas service can be interrupted. Public transportation can be terribly delayed, causing difficulties in getting to and from work. Children living in small spaces can get cranky; pets can too. In the worst case scenario, you may even have to evacuate.

Know where to go. If you are ordered to evacuate, know the local hurricane evacuation route(s) to take and have a plan for where you can stay. Contact your local emergency management agency for more information. Put together a disaster supply kit, including a flashlight, batteries, cash, first aid supplies, and copies of your critical information if you need to evacuate If you are not in an area that is advised to evacuate and you decide to stay in your home, plan for adequate supplies in case you lose power and water for several days and you are not able to leave due to flooding or blocked roads. Make a family emergency communication plan. Many communities have text or email alerting systems for emergency notifications. To find out what alerts are available in your area, search the Internet with your town, city, or county name and the word "alerts."

Hurricane winds can cause trees and branches to fall, so before hurricane season trim or remove damaged trees and limbs to keep you and your property safe. Secure loose rain gutters and downspouts and clear any clogged areas or debris to prevent water damage to your property. Reduce property damage by retrofitting to secure and reinforce the roof, windows and doors, including the garage doors. Purchase a portable generator or install a generator for use during power outages. Remember to keep generators and other alternate power/heat sources outside, at least 20 feet away from windows and doors and protected from moisture; and NEVER try to power the house wiring by plugging a generator into a wall outlet.

What to do with flood damage?

12/7/2017 (Permalink)

When a storm leaves a home flooded, or a burst pipe causes serious issues in the house, getting water damage restoration services from a respected company should be considered a top priority. Unfortunately, this industry is not regulated, and there are people out there who pose as professionals or overstate their qualifications. Therefore, homeowners should be mindful of who they hire, as an untrained technician may do more harm than good or delay repairs, resulting in a higher degree of destruction. Before selecting a company to handle the job, keep in mind these points of emphasis. Only choose certified professionals to perform water damage restoration services. Even though the industry is not regulated, technicians who have received certifications have made the effort to get the best training possible, proving that they take their job seriously. Certification through the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) is a sign that a professional has received the most up to date training and is knowledgeable in the latest techniques and technologies employed during repairs. The IICRC operates a Certified Firm registrant-only database on its site, making it easy to find a local, certified professional like SERVPRO of Providence without trouble. Do not select a technician based only on the price. When possible, speak to neighbors or friends who have had to hire a restoration company recently and try to get a recommendation from them. Choose a company that offers a range of water damage restoration services like SERVPRO of Providence. The easiest way to determine the expertise of a firm is to see if they provide a full range of options for homeowners. Mold remediation, for example, is often needed given how quickly mold can set in. This is a standard field of knowledge that advanced technicians should possess. If a company doesn’t offer mold remediation, it may not be prepared for all job settings. A company such as SERVPRO of Providence that is available 24/7 is a good sign. Stay away from any firms that are reluctant to start right away. In many cases modern equipment can enable near-complete drying in as little as 36 hours, although many situations require longer. Also, a homeowner should not have to wait before repairs begin. Every minute counts when there is standing water present, and reputable professionals understand this. If a restoration company insists on waiting to begin the  remediation portion of the loss, they probably cannot be trusted to see the job through in a reasonable timeframe. Using these guidelines, a homeowner should be able to find a technician that can be trusted and is equipped to do the job the right way. A storm or other disaster is hard enough to deal with, and a remediation firm should do everything in its power to make this difficult process easier.

Faster to Any Size Emergency

In many cleaning and restoration situations, immediate action is needed. Water is particularly invasive, quickly spreading throughout your property and being absorbed into floors, walls, furniture, etc. SERVPRO of Providence arrives quickly and starts the water extraction process almost immediately. 

For help restoring your home after a water loss, call SERVPRO of Providence at 401-639-9602. We’ll make it “Like it never even happened.”

Frozen Pipes: Prevention and Treatment

12/7/2017 (Permalink)

With the colder weather officially upon us, now is an excellent time to learn more about how to avoid frozen pipes, and the subsequent water damage that can occur if those pipes expand and burst. Though frozen pipes are a common occurrence, they are highly preventable. 

SERVPRO offers the following tips for preventing frozen pipes and mitigating potential damage that they can cause. 

  • Insulate all the exposed pipes in your home. Especially where they may be unheated, such as the basement, attic, garage, crawl space, and under kitchen and bathroom cabinets. 
  • Keep the temperature the same during the day and at night. By temporarily suspending the use of lower temperatures in the evening, you can prevent a costly repair job if pipes freeze and burst. 
  • Close any inside values that supply water outdoors and open the outside value to properly drain excess water that may be in the pipes. 
  • In drastically cold temperatures, let your faucet trickle. While you may be concerned about wasting water, running water is less likely to freeze. 
  • Remove, drain, and store hoses used outdoors. Keep outside valves open so that any water remaining in the pipe can expand without causing it to break. 
  • If you plan to be away from home for an extended period of time, leave the heat on and set to a temperature no lower than 55° F. 

Found a Frozen Pipe? Thaw It Out:  

  • If you turn on a faucet and only a few drips come out, suspect a frozen pipe. Typically, frozen pipes are found along exterior walls or where your water service enters your home through the foundation. 
  • Make sure the faucet remains on while treating the pipes, as the flowing water will help to melt the ice within the pipe. 
  • Apply heat to the section of pipe using an electric heating pad, an electric hair dryer, or by wrapping pipes with towels soaked in hot water. Do not use a blowtorch, kerosene or propane heater, or other open flame device. 
  • Check all other faucets in your home to find out if you have additional frozen pipes. If one pipe freezes, others may freeze too.  

Should you experience a loss resulting from water damage, turn off the water supply as soon as possible, and call SERVPRO of Providence immediately. The longer you wait to call, the greater the chance of mold growth and unrecoverable property. SERVPRO of Providence professionals have the expertise to prevent or mitigate the devastating effects that water damage can have. 

Commercial Duct Cleaning

12/7/2017 (Permalink)

When it comes to fighting dirty indoor air, SERVPRO of Providence has what it takes to help everyone breathe easier and feel better in the workplace and at home. Our commercial and Residential duct cleaning procedures conform strictly to the high standards of the National Air Duct Cleaning Association (NADCA). Our technicians are fully trained in the latest techniques, and equipped with state of the art equipment to perform the most thorough cleaning that will ensure a healthier, more productive, clean air environment for your employees or family members. In addition, our team of technicians will get the job done with minimal disruption to your home, office facilities, employees and work schedules. SERVPRO of Providence will send out one of our experienced Project Managers to perform a walk through to provide an estimate at no cost to you! 

Some of the things we check for are: 

  •  Water infiltration into ductwork.
  • Bird and small animal damage.
  • Blocked outside air intakes.