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Fire Damage Restoration Process

7/31/2020 (Permalink)

fire damaged interior of residence Have Questions About Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage? Call Today (360) 254-0049

After the fire trucks leave, your home likely suffers from fire and smoke damage and extensive water damage from firefighting efforts. SERVPRO of Vancouver/Clark County  has the specialized fire restoration training needed to restore your home to pre-fire condition.

Every fire damage event is a little different, and requires a unique solution, but the general process stays the same. The steps listed below illustrate our process for the “typical” fire damage emergency.

Step 1: Emergency Contact

The restoration process begins when you call SERVPRO of Vancouver/Clark County (360) 254-0049, we available 24 hours a day. Our specialist will ask a series of questions regarding the fire damage event that will help us dispatch with the appropriate equipment and resources.

Step 2: Inspection and Fire Damage Assessment

Our Professionals will carefully inspect and test adjoining rooms of your property to determine the extent of the fire, smoke, and soot damage. This step is crucial to developing a plan of action.

Step 3: Immediate Board-Up and Roof-Tarp Service

Fire damage can often compromise windows, walls, and roofs. To maintain security and to protect against further damage, we can board up missing windows and walls and place tarps on damaged roofs.

Step 4: Water Removal and Drying (if water damage is present)

The water removal process begins almost immediately and removes the majority of the water. They will then use dehumidifiers and air movers to remove the remaining water and complete the drying process.

Step 5: Removal of Smoke and Soot from All Surfaces

The SERVPRO uses specialized equipment and techniques to remove smoke and soot from ceilings, walls, and other surfaces.

Step 6: Cleaning and Sanitizing

They will clean all of the restorable items and structures that were damaged by the fire. They use a variety of cleaning techniques to restore your belongings to pre-fire condition. They’re also trained to remove odors using industrial air scrubbers and fogging equipment.

Step 7: Restoration

Restoration is the final step—getting your home or business to its pre-fire condition. Restoration may involve minor repairs, such as replacing drywall, painting, and installing new carpet; or it may entail major repairs such as the reconstruction of various areas or rooms in a home or business.

What to Expect After a Fire

7/24/2020 (Permalink)

Fire and smoke damaged bedroom About 35% of residential insurance claims are from fire. Call a leader in the fire restoration industry (360) 254-0049

Fire and smoke damage is destructive and finding a restoration/mitigation company can be daunting. When it comes to fire and smoke damage restoration, SERVPRO of Vancouver/ Clark County is trained and follow an extensive and thorough restoration process in order to get your home or business back to normal.

Each fire/smoke damage case is unique and is treated as such by SERVPRO. SERVPRO professionals will compose a detailed plan to rid your property of smoke and soot damage. Smoke odor latches onto and penetrates the surfaces of walls, ceilings, clothes, upholstered furniture, books, electronics and more. It is crucial that all affected contents and surfaces are properly sanitized by professionals. Oftentimes it can be difficult to determine the source of the smoke odor. Experienced professionals know where to look for smoke and soot damage and how to best approach the restoration process.

If smoke damage is not taken care of by a professional, your property and its inhabitants may face greater damage. Smoke and soot can destroy the integrity of your home or business, damaging the ventilation system, air ducts, insulation, wall studs and even the framing/structure.

What Will SERVPRO Do?

Board Up and Security

Fires can destroy doors, walls and windows, leaving your property vulnerable to additional loss from weather or theft. SERVPRO professionals have the equipment and capabilities to provide board up for your home or business. Your home or business may need additional security. SERVPRO can also provide fencing or even security to oversee your property.

Demolition

All damaged structural material is removed from the structure in order for the mitigation and restoration to take place. Demolition is a planned procedure, completed with the utmost care and strategy.

Cleanup

The local fire department will use fire retardants and water to extinguish the flames. SERVPRO will assess and examine the extent of damage to the structure, walls, ceilings, floors, ventilation/HVAC system and contents while composing a thorough plan for mitigation and restoration.

Contents

Clothes, upholstered furniture, books, electronics and more that are affected by smoke may be salvaged and sanitized. All affected items deemed salvageable are sanitized and deodorized using specialized solutions and equipment. Contents go through an extensive inventory process ensuring all items are accounted for and stored in a secure location.

Why Hire SERVPRO for Fire & Smoke Damage?

7/24/2020 (Permalink)

Employee cleaning soot from ceiling Call SERVPRO of Vancouver/Clark County, we're open 24/7 365 days a year! (360) 254-0049

After a fire, your house is left with lingering smoke that can be harmful to your health and property. The best thing to do in such a situation is to clean smoke immediately because if you ignore it, you will have a larger problem on your hands and it will require more money to clean than if you had cleaned it sooner. If the smoke is not cleaned as soon as possible, the items that will be mostly affected by smoke are drapes, carpets, upholstery and walls because they will become permanently discolored. Glass will become extremely etched, and metals will tarnish which will require replacement.

You might think that you can do a good job at cleaning smoke by yourself without any basic knowledge and skills on how to go about it but this can lead to you causing further damage on the items. The best thing to do will be to hire experienced SERVPRO professionals to do the cleaning and restore the home to its preloss condition.

One of the advantages of using SERVPRO experts to clean soot is that we have specialized tools which are crucial in eliminating smoke. These are tools such as extractors, rotary scrubbers, and wet cleaning tools. Another advantage is that we have a lot of experience in doing such work; therefore, we will know the right steps to take in cleaning your home and preventing further damage on your property. Our goal is to restore your contents rather than replace, to save you money and heartache.

Bringing in SERVPRO professionals on site will save you headaches and ensure that smoke and fire damage are eradicated efficiently.

Storm Damage Restoration

7/17/2020 (Permalink)

heavy rain on rooftop SERVPRO of Vancouver/Clark County can help to treat a big problem before it leads to house condemnation. Find out how by calling us at (360) 254-0049.

A big storm hits, and now you are dealing with the need for home damage restoration. It goes without saying that if your house is damaged in a storm and the outside elements are coming in, you need to turn to a professional to get your house back in shape. There is no time to waste either, the first 24 hours following a water loss are the most important in preventing secondary or permanent damage.

Cleaning up Debris

One of the first steps in home damage restoration is to clean up the damaged elements of the building. This includes pulling down broken roofs and pulling out damaged windows. This is not the easiest process to do during the cold winter months, but it is something that requires immediate attention so that you can get into the home and start fixing the problems. SERVPRO of Vancouver/ Clark County cleanup crews can help to make the process easier to manage.

Reducing Mold Risks

Water, including water in its frozen state of ice and snow, is very problematic for the home. If you've been involved in an incident in which there is a significant build-up of snow or ice on the roof of the house, this puts a great deal of pressure on the structure. If the structure cracks and the roof falls that water is now in your home and could potentially lead to mold growth. The problem is, you can’t wait until spring to fix these types of problems. They need immediate attention which SERVPRO of Vancouver/Clark County can provide.

Rebuilding Fast

Once the problems are taken care of, it is just as important to get your house back into livable condition again. This may mean adding drywall, roofing, windows, and other components damaged by the storm.

Home damage restoration is one of the most important steps you can take in reclaiming your house after a storm. Have a professional handle the process for you quickly.

Commercial Water Damage Best Practices

7/3/2020 (Permalink)

water damaged commercial ceiling We're here for you, to make it "Like it never even happened."

Water damage is a threat to the safety of occupants, and the finances of the owners, but not just of residential homes, but commercial buildings as well. In Vancouver, Washington that means plenty of retail stores, banks, and the other commercial structures. In times of severe flooding or plumbing failure, this damage could even stop your business from performing daily tasks, which halts daily business, causing you to lose money.

Here, are some basic preventative and responsive best practices that tenants of commercial buildings can use to get back to business quickly.

Preventative Measures

There are things you can do to minimize the damage due to water leaks in a commercial environment. First, educate your office managers on water damage preparedness. This includes having your managers learn how to turn off the water, electric, and gas supply. If you don’t have access to these things, then they should know who to call to have such things done. It’s also a good idea to have some basic tools in the office in the event of an emergency. Lastly, have a list of emergency contact phone numbers for all employees so that in the worst-case scenario the loved ones of those injured can be notified. Of course, you should already have the contact information for your local fire and police numbers, so that anyone who is injured can get medical attention if needed.

Response

Just as with residential structures, rapid response is critical to water damage in an office. The longer water is in an affected the area the more of a chance there is that it will be affected by mold, which is another problem altogether.

The best course of action is:

  1. Call a plumber to fix the source of the loss;
  2. Call your insurance and file a claim if necessary.
  3. Call SERVPRO of Vancouver to remediate the damage. (360) 254-0049

What Should You Do After a Fire?

6/10/2020 (Permalink)

electrical outlet fire If a fire has affected your home, give us a call at (360) 254-0049.

What to Expect After a Fire

Fire and smoke damage is destructive and finding a restoration/mitigation company can be daunting. When it comes to fire and smoke damage restoration, our crew of SERVPRO of Vancouver/ Clark County, are trained and follow an extensive and thorough restoration process in order to get your home or business back to normal.

Each fire/smoke damage case is unique and is treated as such by SERVPRO professionals. SERVPRO professionals will compose a detailed plan to rid your property of smoke and soot damage. Smoke odor latches onto and penetrates the surfaces of walls, ceilings, clothes, upholstered furniture, books, electronics and more. It is crucial that all affected contents and surfaces are properly sanitized by professionals. Oftentimes it can be difficult to determine the source of the smoke odor. Experienced professionals know where to look for smoke and soot damage and how to best approach the restoration process.

If smoke damage is not taken care of by a professional, your property and its inhabitants may face greater damage. Smoke and soot can destroy the integrity of your home or business, damaging the ventilation system, air ducts, insulation, wall studs and even the framing/structure.

Different Smoke Odors

Cleaning smoke and soot damage yourself or using a basic cleaning service runs the risk of recurring smoke odor which can cause respiratory problems. Smoke odor can be harmful depending on what type of material was burned. Smoke that comes from wood framing causes a “campfire” smell which lets off acetic acid, benzene, carbon monoxide (CO), formaldehyde, formic acid, heavy metals, nitrogen-oxides (NO2), phenols, sulfur dioxide (SO2).

Cooking fire smoke is very difficult to remove and has a lingering smell of burnt animal fat/protein. Grease splatter from a cooking fire requires specific cleaning techniques that only a professional can provide.

When plastic is burned, it releases dangerous chemicals such as hydrochloric acid, sulfur dioxide, dioxins, furans and heavy metals, as well as particulates and are known to cause respiratory ailments which are potentially carcinogenic.

Fireplace wood fires also emit hazardous emissions, such as particulates, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), and other emissions that can be dangerous for health.

Who Are The Professionals?

SERVPRO provides 24/7 Emergency response. After the initial emergency call our team will promptly respond to your fire damage and arrive onsite, prepared to assess, plan and arrange resources to restore your home or business back to what it once was.

What Will SERVPRO Do?

Board Up and Security

Fires can destroy doors, walls and windows, leaving your property vulnerable to additional loss from weather or theft. SERVPRO professionals have the equipment and capabilities to provide board up for your home or business. Your home or business may need additional security. SERVPRO can also provide fencing or even security to oversee your property.

Demolition

All damaged structural material is removed from the structure in order for the mitigation and restoration to take place. Demolition is a planned procedure, completed with the utmost care and strategy.

Cleanup

The local fire department will use fire retardants and water to extinguish the flames. SERVPRO will assess and examine the extent of damage to the structure, walls, ceilings, floors, ventilation/HVAC system and contents while composing a thorough plan for mitigation and restoration.

Contents

Clothes, upholstered furniture, books, electronics and more that are affected by smoke may be salvaged and sanitized. All affected items deemed salvageable are sanitized and deodorized using specialized solutions and equipment. Contents go through an extensive inventory process ensuring all items are accounted for and stored in a secure location.

When Your Home or Business Is Involved In a Storm Damage

6/8/2020 (Permalink)

home damaged by fallen tree, tarped. Reach us at (360)254-0049, we’re here to help!

Storm damage can occur at any time and can cause an immense amount of harm to your home. Heavy rains can cause flooding and powerful winds can cause roof damage and downed trees on your property. Some post-storm damage can create safety and health hazards as well, so having a strategy to deal with damage will help you to be ready to take steps immediately after the storm.

Take Safety Precautions

Heavy winds and rain can create physical hazards such as collapsed roofing materials, window damage, collapsed walls or standing water in the basement or home interior. In addition, moisture can soak into furniture, carpeting, and building materials making the perfect environment for mold growth that can cause health effects. Shut off the main gas line if you smell gas. Beware of broken glass, exposed nails, and other sharp objects on the property. Contact SERVPRO of Vancouver/ Clark County to help do basic tasks to secure your property and make it safe. If necessary, arrange for an alternative place for you and your family to live while your property is being restored to safe living condition.

Photograph the Damage

If it is safe to move around your property, use your cellphone or a camera to photograph the damage so that you will have a record for your insurance company. This action will ensure that you are fully compensated.

Contact Your Insurance Company

Contact your insurance agent to notify them about the damage to your home immediately. The company will send out an adjuster to determine the extent of the damage so that payment for repairs can be made.

When a storm-related disaster strikes, it may seem overwhelming, but these steps can help you to begin the process of restoring your home, and your life, to normal. At SERVPRO of Vancouver/ Clark County, we provide 24-hour emergency disaster service. We specialize in the stabilization and restoration of homes and businesses that have suffered small or large loss from water, flood, wind, storm, fire damage and smoke damage. 

Top 4 Causes of Commercial Water Damage

5/29/2020 (Permalink)

Water damaged commercial restroom For a quick response, the latest technology, and the best customer service, call SERVPRO of Clark County at (360)254-0049, We’re here to help!

Leaks and cracks can turn into a downpour and flood an entire area or property.

Extensive water damage can happen very quickly. It only takes one broken pipe or a small roof leak to turn into a downpour that can flood an entire area or property.

If your commercial building is not in immaculate condition, you are at risk for water damage. By becoming familiar with the top 4 causes of water damage, you can be better prepared in case of an emergency and minimize lost revenue as a result of downtime.

Broken or Leaky Pipes and Drains: Your plumbing system is always at-risk for developing clogs, stoppages, and leaks. If a crack develops, it can spill 250 gallons of dirty water in your facility. This is especially dangerous in restrooms, where sewer water can be filled with hazardous waste.

Look for any outward signs of moisture, rusting, or cracking pipes. Additionally, always keep pipes insulated  if they are exposed to lower temperatures to prevent freezing.

Active leak detection systems can be valuable as they can detect and stop leaks from happening.

Sprinkler Systems: Commercial buildings are required by law to be equipped with sprinkler systems. The system works in conjunction with the fire alarm to turn on anytime the fire alarm is activated. This makes them very valuable in preventing fire damage, but simultaneously causes water damage in the process.

In addition, sprinkler systems can malfunction and cause water damage all on their own. Always check your sprinkler system for signs of damage or rust.

Appliances and Equipment: If your facility contains equipment or appliances that utilize water, such as air conditioners, washing machines, refrigerators or water heaters, leaks or breaks are a constant concern.

The best action you can take is to regularly inspect and maintain your equipment. Take preventative measures: replace water lines, re-caulk, and re-seal.

Roofs: Leaky roofs are the most common cause of water damage, especially in geographies that frequently experience hail or freezing temperatures.

If there is a large volume of water accumulating on your roof, you should probably have that inspected by a professional. One inch of water weighs almost five pounds and over time, this can cause strain and damage to your building. 

You can rely on SERVPRO of Vancouver/ Clark County if you experience any kind of water damage in your home or business.

My Sump Pump Failed, Now What Do I Do?

5/26/2020 (Permalink)

flooded bedroom If you experience a sump pump failure and need to call someone you can trust, call SERVPRO of Vancouver/Clark County (360) 254-0049

Not all areas of the country have basements, but here in the Pacific Northwest we certainly do. It’s smart to have a sump pump (or 2) in the lower spots in the basement. If you’re going to spend money to have a finished basement, it’s only smart to protect that investment by installing a relatively inexpensive (at least as it compares to the cost of a typical basement finishing project) water mitigation system. But like any mechanical system in your home, it’s not fail proof. In fact, all too often when they’re expected to perform to protect your home they fail and the consequences can be disastrous.

What do I do if my sump pump fails?

In most cases sump pumps fail during rain events. When that happens, the water usually seeps in through the foundation or basement walls and begins pooling in the lowest area of the basement, gradually rising as more water comes in. So what do you do at that point? Here are a couple of suggestions we have to help you navigate a difficult situation.

First, you’re going to need to get the sump pump fixed. A plumber is going to be necessary to get the sump pump back up and running. Immediately call a licensed plumber in your area and get on their schedule as quickly as possible. During rain events, it’s not unusual for many homes in the area to suffer the same fate as you, so plumbers will get booked up quickly. Act fast and call for their help!

Second, call SERVPRO of Vancouver/ Clark County. Make sure your sump pump is fixed before having the water removed; only once the source of the issue has been fixed can the restoration process begin.

Third, consider making a quick run up to your local hardware store to purchase a basement water pump. These pumps can operate continuously during the water event and suck up the water that is pooling and then transport it by hose into a bathtub or other drain. They can work in very little water (the one we linked works in 1/16th inch of water) and if the water stops it automatically shuts off so it doesn’t burn up. You can get a good water pump for under $100.

Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned – a defensive cleaning program

5/18/2020 (Permalink)

Let us help you get back to business

As our communities re-open, we’re all moving back toward a new kind of normal. The expectations of visitors, customers, and employees who come into our establishments have evolved, and staying safe and well is a top concern. The global COVID-19 pandemic has changed what it means to be clean, and we’ve developed a program to help your business meet the new higher standard of clean that is now expected.

Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned is a defensive cleaning program we’re offering to businesses and commercial locations to address the current COVID-19 pandemic. This proactive viral pathogen cleaning program goes well beyond janitorial or carpet cleaning. By choosing Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned, you, your employees, your customers, and your community can rest assured that you’ve selected a higher cleaning standard – you are Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned.

Extensive training and specialized products

As the #1 choice in cleanup and restoration*, we stand on more than 50 years of experience and expertise to help your business become Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned.  Beyond fire & water, SERVPRO professionals are trained and experienced in biohazard decontamination and chemical spills – always adhering to the cleaning and decontamination standards set by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and local authorities. 

From formulating and creating our proprietary cleaning products, like SERVPROXIDE, at our headquarters in Gallatin, TN, to taking the utmost care while disinfecting, we will ensure you and your business are set up to inspire consumer confidence as the economy continues to reopen.

3 C’s – Consult, Clean, and Certify

When the stakes are this high, you want a partner who has developed an industry leading, proprietary training program, cleaning solutions, and remediation processes over decades. We’ve cleaned up some of the most challenging biohazards imaginable. Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned reflects our unique experiences and capabilities. The program is grounded with our unique 3 C’s: Consult, Clean, and Certify.

  • Consult – Every business is different, which is why you’ll be assigned a Cleaning Protocol Consultant who understands your business and will create a cleaning program to meet your specific needs. This program will be developed based on your business type, size of space, amount of high frequency touchpoints, foot traffic and congestion points.
  • Clean – Based on your specific business needs, your location will undergo a thorough, deep clean, using exclusive cleaning products, according to protocols set forth by the CDC. Our employees have years of experience, and we will go beyond the scope of work that regular janitorial staff perform. Cleanup procedures generally include cleaning of porous and non-porous surfaces, disinfecting of non-porous surfaces, cleaning and disinfecting of equipment, tools, and/or supplies used for cleanup process, and disposal of hazardous materials.  In the event of a suspected or confirmed COVID-19 event, we will be there cleaning within 24 hours to ensure you get back to business as quickly as possible. 
  • Certify - Once your business location has been Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned, you will gain access to proprietary signage, digital emblems, and other collateral that communicates that you’ve selected a higher standard of clean available to help protect your employees and customers. And because we add the day, month, and year to that proprietary stamp of clean, your guests will know that not only did you choose Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned, but that your location is being cleaned regularly at this standard.

Call today for a Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned consultation

We’re Here to Help – 24 hours a day, seven days a week – until life is back to normal in the communities we all call home.

Call SERVPRO of Vancouver/Clark County today at  (360) 254-0049 for your Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned consultation.