Recent Posts

What To Know About the Claims Inventory System

2/18/2019 (Permalink)

When it comes to keeping track of an insurance claim in East Conemaugh, PA, there can be a lot of details to remember. When your client is looking at water, fire, mold, or storm damage to their property, the restoration process can be complicated. Fortunately, the professional restoration service known as SERVPRO has a claims inventory system that can help. Here’s what you may want to know.

What the System Tracks

A claims inventory system is designed to keep track of various types of data. These include

  • Claims organized by loss type
  • Claims organized by damage type
  • Individual file reviews
  • Both regional and national company comparisons
  • Job file costs
  • Response times

Much of the data can also be organized by location, meaning that you can look up information by whether it falls under a regional, state or national category. In many cases, data can also be located by county.

How the System Works

As the team collects the information needed for the insurance claim, they upload it to their corporate database. This information typically includes both the original estimate and any updates to the information that may need to be made. As an insurance provider, you can then access this information through the management dashboard.

How It Can Benefit You

The dashboard allows the insurance agent to quickly access the facts they need to complete a claim. The ability to log in to the dashboard can help save time that might otherwise have been spent making phone calls, searching through paperwork, or seeking the right contact. This tool can also allow you to quickly look over the information needed to help answer any questions your client may have about their claim.

When processing an insurance claim, using the claims inventory system provided by SERVPRO may help. The restoration team collects the information needed for the claim and then uploads it to the database. This allows you to easily access the data needed to process your client's claim.

Dealing with a Furnace Puff Back

2/18/2019 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Dealing with a Furnace Puff Back Soot webs in the upstairs stairway due to a furnace puff back in the basement.

Dealing with a Furnace Puff Back

Is Your Furnace Ready for Winter? 
It doesn't get much worse than finally giving into turning on your furnace for the next few months and having it blow a whole bunch of soot back out through your entire home. 

What is a Puff Back? 
The term "Puff Back" refers to the sudden explosion of soot into your home or business caused by a malfunction in the heating system. This soot is usually a sticky, greasy, grimy mess that can present a sever health hazard. All of those minuscule, oil based particles embed themselves in your curtains, carpets, and clothing while contaminating the air with known carcinogens. 

How Can I Know if I had a Puff Back?
Puff Backs are characterized by the oily black soot left behind, often appearing like spider webs. The soot and other debris from the explosion can easily be carried throughout your home by the exhaust and heating systems meaning that every room in your home has the potential to be damaged.   

You might be tempted to try and clean up this mess by yourself, but running a vacuum over the soot only grinds it deeper and creates stains that will never come out. Wiping the soot from walls and ceilings creates a place where paint will no longer stick, and unless the soot is quickly and professionally removed, it can cause corrosion of metal on doorknobs, faucets, and even electronic equipment in the home. Because every inch of the home is affected, a puff back is an overwhelming job to clean properly. 

As a trusted leader in the restoration industry, SERVPRO of Ebensburg has highly trained technicians that are dedicated to responding to any size disaster with 24-hour emergency response. Contact us today, at 814-472-0800, to see what SERVPRO of Ebensburg can do to help you! 

Unfixed Water Intrusions can Lead to Larger Problems

2/18/2019 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation Unfixed Water Intrusions can Lead to Larger Problems Mold growth in a damp basement

Excess Moisture can Lead to a More Expensive Problem Quicker than you Think. 

Intrusion of water into your home or place of business can result in mold growth. Water intrusions can result from storm damage, plumbing or equipment failures, long-standing leaks and poor humidity control. When water intrusions are not addressed right away, the resulting damage can present increased risk of harmful mold growth. If the humidity and moisture levels in a water-damaged environment are not promptly returned to normal, mold spores may grow and multiply. Organic materials found inside a building, such as wood, paper, drywall and insulation, provide food sources for mold to flourish. Excessive mold growth can lead to indoor environmental conditions that pose a health threat.

If there is an ongoing moisture problem in the building, it is important to be alert for: 

  • The presence of visible mold.
  • Strong musty odors which may indicate mold is present.
  • Any evidence of past moisture problems that might have caused undetected mold growth.
  • Excessive humidity.

As a trusted leader in the restoration industry, SERVPRO of Ebensburg has highly trained technicians that are dedicated to responding to any size disaster with 24-hour emergency response. Contact us today, at 814-472-0800, to see what SERVPRO of Ebensburg can do to help you! 

SERVPRO of Ebensburg Dispatched to Virginia Beach

2/18/2019 (Permalink)

Storm Damage SERVPRO of Ebensburg Dispatched to Virginia Beach Thousands of people along the east coast had to deal with flash flooding in the wake of Hurricane Matthew.

Hurricane Matthew hit the United States affecting states up the east coast from Florida to Virginia. With winds maxing out at 107 M.P.H, just short of 10 foot surges, and some areas getting over 7 inches of rain an hour, Matthew brought wide spread flash flooding and record river flooding as it worked its way north. 

SERVPRO of Ebensburg's Storm Team was just one of the many Storm Teams across the country to get the call to help those affected by Matthew. Our Team was sent to Raleigh, North Carolina , and then came back north to Virginia Beach, Virginia to help those that were dealing with sever flooding and power outages due to the hurricane.  

Now that water levels are receding, our team members are working long hard days in an attempt to help the residents of Virginia Beach get their lives back to normal as quickly as possible! 

Steps To Expect With Storm Damage Restoration

2/18/2019 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Steps To Expect With Storm Damage Restoration Drying equipment on damaged area

Steps of A Storm Restoration Process

Repairing extensive water damage is far more intensive than simply removing standing water and allowing the room to dry. That is why it is critical to hire a professional team to ensure every step of the storm restoration process is carried out precisely. You may not have the tools at your disposal to tear out damaged materials and dry porous items, so leave this work to the experts in Ebensburg, PA. 

1. Extraction

Before anything else can be done, the team needs to remove all water from the premises. Any furniture or other items will be removed too so that the proper equipment can be moved in. 

2. Removal

Once all the standing water is gone, the team can eliminate any wet materials. This typically involves cutting away the drywall. A professional will create a flood cut about 12 inches above the flood line. This step is even more essential if there is insulation located behind the wall that could have absorbed some of the moisture. A professional tear out helps remove any mold that could have developed. 

3. Drying

You can assist in the ventilation process by opening up all windows and setting up fans to help dry the room. The team may bring in a heavy-duty industrial fan to expedite the process. During the dry down, the team will also look at all items affected by the flood to see what can be salvaged and what will need to be tossed. Your team in Ebensburg, PA will do everything possible to save all valuables, but there may be little hope for certain items. 

4. Restoration

The team can then install new drywall and insulation to make the room look as good as new. Make sure to ask about getting materials installed that are waterproofed and will remain resilient in case another flood occurs in the future. With the right materials, you may be able to avoid another tear out later. 

Visit http://www.SERVPROebensburg.com for more information on storm damage.

Flood Damage and Preparation

2/18/2019 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Flood Damage and Preparation Basement storm flooding in Ebensburg, PA

Preparing For Flooding In Ebensburg, PA

This article explains how a flood preparation ensures the home is safe, and everyone in the house will recover from the storm. There are several techniques that may be used, and homeowners must be ready in the event of an emergency.

1: Planning For A Water Loss

There are several different reasons a water loss may occur in homes around the Ebensburg, PA area, and they often are related to saturation of the ground in a storm. There are several lawns in the area that will not hold any water, and the water will flow directly into the basement or begin a flash flood. Mitigation of water damage includes digging trenches in the yard to help water flow away from the house, waterproofing the basement and installing a sum pump that will drain the lowest level of the house.

2: Clearing Out Water Damage

Water may reach several parts of the home as the carpentry and drywall is broken down. Standing water will cause many issues that are difficult to compete with, and the mitigation firm must be allowed time to complete their work. They will remove all the water from the home, and they will keep the house completely clean once it has been drained.

Three Ways to Continue Working During a Power Outage

2/13/2019 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Three Ways to Continue Working During a Power Outage Power outage in Carrolltown, PA

Few Ways to Continue Working While The Power is Out In Your Office

If your Carrolltown, PA business experiences a power outage, it can be difficult to keep your business running as usual. However, there are some options that you have if your building loses power. Here are a few ways that you can continue to work while the power is out in your office.

1. Invest In an Alternate Power Source

One of the most common solutions if your business loses power is to use a portable generator. This can help you continue working until the power comes back on. It might also be a good idea to have a UPS, or uninterruptible power source, connected to your computers. The battery power in the UPS will give you time to shut down the computers properly and make sure that all of your important data is saved.

2. Use Wi-Fi to Access the Internet

Most phone services today offer a data plan so you can use the internet anywhere. This can come in especially handy if there is a power outage. Depending on your data plan and phone, you might be able to use your phone as a hot spot to provide internet to several devices. If this is not an option, there are many public spaces in which you can access wi-fi for free.

3. Consider Working From Home

If it is possible for you or your employees to work from home, this might be the best solution. If your homes have power while your work place does not, it may be easier and more convenient to temporarily bring your work home with you. Relocating to a library or café for the duration of the outage is another option.
Having a power outage in your building does not mean that all of your work needs to be put on hold. You might just need to find another source of power. If the outage is accompanied by other damage to your building, you can hire emergency restoration services to do any needed repairs.

How Long Do Smoke Alarm Batteries Last?

2/5/2019 (Permalink)

Fire Damage How Long Do Smoke Alarm Batteries Last? Homeowners should replace the detector unit every 10 years

A smoke alarm will only function if a power source is available. The batteries in alarms that are not hardwired, and the backup battery power in systems that are, should be switched out on a regular basis. It is advisable to be proactive and not to wait for a smoke detector to start beeping before changing the batteries. Find out more about the average operating life of different types of alarm batteries.

Alarms With Replaceable Batteries

Smoke alarms that rely on replaceable batteries may require various types. There are five common types of alkaline batteries:

  • Nine-volt or PP3
  • AAA
  • AA
  • C
  • D

Most smoke detectors with replaceable batteries use nine-volt or PP3 batteries. Make sure that you have spare batteries for any detector. Homeowners should replace the detector unit every 10 years.

Alarms With Non-Replaceable Batteries

Some newer smoke alarm models run on a lithium battery that has a 10-year operating life. Batteries in these detectors cannot be replaced. It will be necessary to purchase and install a new detector at the end of this period. Old detectors should be deactivated according to the instructions for each model prior to proper disposal.

Backup Batteries

Some building codes require homeowners to have hardwired smoke detection systems. A battery backup can ensure that these smoke alarms will continue to function even if the power goes out. These batteries should be replaced at least once a year.

Whether an alarm relies on replaceable alkaline batteries, a non-replaceable lithium battery, or is hardwired with a backup battery pack, it is important to replace batteries at least once a year. If a smoke alarm starts beeping before this time, go ahead and replace the battery. If a fire breaks out and damages or destroys building materials and contents at a residence in Cresson, PA, homeowners should schedule a consultation with a fire damage restoration company.

3 Things You Should Know About Mold Damaged Paintings

1/23/2019 (Permalink)

3 Things You Should Know About Mold Damaged Paintings

If you have a painting in your home in Portage, PA that has been affected by mold, you may be unsure whether or not the mold can be removed. However, knowing about the mold cleaning process of paintings can help you prepare for the process of restoration.

1. Paintings Can Be Restored

Seeing a painting that you value covered in mold can be devastating. However, it is often possible for paintings to be restored. Factors that can determine whether or not a painting can be restored may include: the age of the painting, the amount of mold on the painting and the materials used in the making of the original painting. Although paintings can be restored, it’s generally advisable to leave the restoration process to the experts.

2. A Quick Response Is Important

When a painting becomes damaged by mold, it’s often best to react quickly in order to prevent more damage from occurring. Though moving the painting by yourself may cause mold spores to move, it can be useful to eliminate any sources of water that are making it easier for the mold to grow. Less mold present on a painting often makes the mold cleaning process much easier.

3. Remediation Can Be Time-Consuming

Even if a painting has what appears to be a small amount of mold on it, the process of remediation can take a great deal of time. In order to fully restore the painting, professionals must use various treatments to ensure that the painting is not damaged. Once mold has been removed, professionals must then work to correct any parts of the painting that were damaged, and the process of making the painting look as if it has never been damaged is complex.

Mold cleaning can often be an important step to restore a painting, though responding quickly to prevent further mold damage and having patience with the process is often helpful. If paintings and other items in your home have been affected by mold, consider contacting mold remediation experts.

Don’t Ignore a Toilet Overflow

1/18/2019 (Permalink)

Water Damage Don’t Ignore a Toilet Overflow Call SERVPRO of Ebensburg, we can handle all aspects of cleanup and restoration

Sewer damage in your home is just repulsive to think about, but it is best to think about it before it happens so you are prepared to clean it up the right way. Here are some things you should know so you can handle an overflowing toilet in your home in Johnstown, PA.

Not Your Average Flood

When you have sewer damage overflow, it’s not your average flood water: it is “black water.” That means it contains biological hazards, like bacteria or viruses. This means extra precaution is needed in the cleanup of a flooded toilet:

  • Skin should be protected from exposure by wearing gloves and boots.

  • Cleanup will require the use of antimicrobials and disinfectants.

  • Some materials may not be cleanable and need replaced.

When it comes to cleanup, you need to keep safety in mind because this is a black water flood.

Mold Growth

Proper cleanup must also consider the prevention of mold growth. A toilet overflow always comes at a bad time, and you may be tempted to go on to work with a plan to deal with the damage later. Delays in cleanup could cause problematic secondary damage, like mold growth. In just 48 hours, mold can start to grow. That may sound like enough time to go to work and come back, but then your materials would be so saturated with black water that it may take much longer to remove and dry everything. Once mold colonies start forming, it’s really hard to get them under control.

Professional Help

Who should you call for help? Don’t look for a sewage company to help because you need a full disaster mitigation specialist that can handle all aspects of cleanup and restoration. You want someone that is knowledgeable about black water cleanup including proper safety practices and prevention of secondary damage.

Summary

When you have a toilet overflow in your home, you want to prepare yourself for the additional complications associated with that type of problem. Professional sewage cleanup and water mitigation will ensure your home is restored to the condition it was in before the sewer damage.