Recent Posts

Is Your Business Prepared For a Disaster?

3/25/2020 (Permalink)

Is your Ballwin, MO business prepared for a disaster?

Did you know that 50% of businesses that experience disasters NEVER recover? Of the businesses that do survive, most already had a preparedness plan. A disaster is categorized as any event that disables, interrupts or adversely affects the ability to operate a business in a normal manner.

SERVPRO of South Chesterfield/Wildwood offers a free Emergency Ready Profile ( ERP) to ensure that you and your business are ready for anything. Pre-planning minimizes loss by having a plan of action. It is essential in increasing the speed of recovery of your business.

Types of Disasters

Natural( Only 5 % of disasters are caused naturally)

·       Flooding

·       Hurricanes

·       Ice Storms

·       Tornadoes

·       Earthquakes

·       Mudslides

·       Windstorms

Internal ( Man made) – Internal disasters can cause just as much if not more damage as a natural disaster.

·       Fire Damage

·       Water Damage

·       Major computer Failures

·       Phone System Failures

·       Major Electrical Outages

 Our Emergency Ready Profile is not a complete contingency plan, but it is a great place to start! Call SERVPRO of South Chesterfield/Wildwood today to schedule your free Emergency Ready Profile appointment! (636)537-5400.

The Importance of Choosing a Certified Remediation Company

3/25/2020 (Permalink)

Broken pipe causes mold growth Mold remediation in Wildwood, MO

When water or mold damage strikes, it's crucial to act as fast as possible to remedy the situation. It's hard to see your beloved Wildwood, MO, home suffer from disaster, so finding a certified mold remediation company is an important part of the process. When choosing who to work with, be sure to verify the IICRC (Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification) status of the company or technician. Working with an IIRC certified mold restoration firm or technician ensures the work is completed under the organization's operating values:

  • Respect
  • Responsibility
  • Integrity
  • Excellence
  • Expertise

The IICRC Standards

The IICRC exists to establish and advance globally-recognized standards and accreditations for the inspection, cleaning, restoration, and installation industries. The Institute is a non-profit organization that works to develop and enforce the best methods for cleaning, restoration, and inspection services. The IICRC Standards reduce errors and redundancy as well as overall time and cost of remediation projects. Built on respect, responsibility, integrity, excellence, and expertise, the IICRC Standards assure that all certified mold remediation professionals act in the best interest of their clients and projects.

The IICRC Certification

When you are reviewing companies to handle a mold issue in your home, check for IICRC mold certification. An accredited firm or technician operates with a pledge to effectiveness, quality, and reliability, so you can entrust your home's safety to them. Insurance companies prefer to work with IICRC certified mold restoration companies to get the most competent and trustworthy service. IICRC-verified technicians have proven their expertise by passing the Institute's exam and they continually improve their knowledge with ongoing education courses as the industry changes.
Mold damage, if left untreated or if treated inadequately, can cause significant damage to your home, so it's important to choose a certified mold restoration professional. You can look forward to having a clean, safe home as soon as possible when you choose IICRC certified mold remediation.

4 Tips For Dealing With Water Damage

3/20/2020 (Permalink)

April is right around the corner and as we all know April brings a significant amount of rain with it. Here are a few things you can do to protect your Chesterfield, MO home!

Before you leave your home there are a few things you can do to prevent water damage, although it isn’t always preventable. Dealing with water damage in your home is a stressful situation, but having a clear-cut plan for that just in case moment takes quite a bit of pressure off of your shoulders. Water damage doesn’t work on a timeframe, it can happen at ANY moment! When it does, SERVPRO of South Chesterfield/Wildwood is here to help 24/7.  Should you experience a water loss in your home it’s important to know what to do.

Find and Stop the Source

Water damage can be a result of a number of things such as a pipe burst, dishwasher malfunction, and so much more. If this happens, find the source where the water is coming from and stop the water source immediately. Then, contact your local water damage professionals

Assess the Damage

Assess the water damage to see the severity of it. And once the professional is on-site, consult with him or her and do a walkthrough to help determine what will be needed to help you get it back to “Like it never even happened.”

Rescue Your Most Valuable Items

Water damage can ruin your most valuable possessions. If possible, rescue them from the flooded area as soon as you can to help prevent further damage. This can include valuables such as jewelry, heirlooms, money, photos/photo albums, awards, etc. Protect your investment and rescue your most valuable possessions as early as possible!

Call SERVPRO of South Chesterfield/Wildwood to Come to the Rescue

It’s crucial that you act fast when you have water damage. If you don’t, you can have a bigger issue on your hand, like mold. Thankfully, our highly trained heroes are trained to handle both! Allow our heroes to restore your home and/or business after water damage. Call us today at (636) 573-5400

Preventing and Responding to Commercial Pipe Damage

3/19/2020 (Permalink)

Broken pipe Commercial pipe damage in Ellisville, MO

When running a business in Ellisville, MO, it is crucial to maintain the foundation of the building. Part of this foundation is the pipes. There are many circumstances that can cause a burst pipe — a problem that can potentially shut down a business and cause lots of damage to the property. One of the most common occurrences is a frozen pipe due to a significant temperature drop or a lack of protection against the elements. Below are some simple ways to protect pipes from freezing and bursting.

Damage Prevention

Stopping a pipe burst essentially comes down to keeping your pipes dry and warm:

  • Moisture or standing water around pipes can be dangerous in the event of cold weather.
  • Removing excess water around pipes can lessen the chance of freezing.
  • Exposed pipes are at a higher risk for freezing.
  • Openings around exposed pipes or cracks in insulation can heighten the chance of a problem. Check to make sure the areas around exposed pipes are properly sealed.
  • The temperature inside the building has an effect on the temperature of the pipes.
  • Maintaining a temperature of above 55 degrees Fahrenheit within a commercial building is crucial to prevent a burst pipe.

What To Do When a Pipe Freezes

If a pipe freezes, there is usually the possibility of thawing it out before any damage is done. Turning off the water at the main point of access will lessen the chances of overwhelming a pipe and causing it to burst.
However, if a pipe does freeze and burst, it is important to get immediate help. The longer a broken pipe goes unresolved, the more damage it is likely to do. A professional cleaning and restoration company should be contacted to fix the problem and take care of any lasting effects or water damage.
Pipe damage can be stressful and overwhelming. Frequently checking on the condition of pipes, especially those exposed to the elements, is consequential in how quickly a problem can be identified and solved. Taking the proper steps to minimize the effects of a burst pipe is advantageous to the overall maintenance and health of a business.

Fire Insurance for Renters

3/4/2020 (Permalink)

Renter insurance form on a table with a calculator and a pair of glasses It is important to understand how renters insurance covers fire damage

A fire at your Ballwin, MO, rental home can be a very stressful event. Fortunately, insurance can help you with everything from temporary living expenses to contents restoration. It is important to understand how renters insurance covers fire damage so that you will be prepared if you ever experience a home fire.

What Insurance Covers

As a renter, your policy will not cover the actual building structure in the event of a fire. The landlord’s insurance will cover that. Many insurance policies for renters will cover the following in the event of a non-criminal fire:

  • Liability
  • Third party medical expenses
  • Temporary relocation expenses
  • Contents

The exact coverage varies from policy to policy, so be sure to check with your agent to ensure you have sufficient coverage. Additionally, make sure your contents coverage will pay replacement cost rather than actual cash value. Due to depreciation, it may be very difficult to replace your belongings if you are only insured for their current value.

How To Document Fire Damage

When you file a claim with your renter's insurance, the first thing to do is call your insurance company. They may have specific instructions for documenting fire damage. You will likely need to take detailed photo or video of the property. The insurance company will also schedule to send an adjuster to assess the damage. Ideally, you will have a home inventory on hand. This is a list of all the items you own, including purchase dates and prices for expensive items such as furniture and electronics. You should create the inventory when you move into your home, update it regularly and keep a copy, either physical or digital, in a secure location.
After you have documented all the damage and filed a claim with your renters insurance, it is time to begin the fire restoration process. Depending on the extent of the damage, you may need to hire a certified restoration company to help you get your belongings back to pre-fire condition.

How to Flush Your Water Heater

2/11/2020 (Permalink)

Man's hands unscrewing a screw-nut on a water heater with a wrench on a boiler Flushing a water heater in a Chesterfield, MO home

If you are working in your basement in Chesterfield, MO and you notice that your water heater is making screeching or crackling sounds, you may worry that you have to replace your heater. There are some situations where that is the case, but fortunately there are many other times when you just need to give your heater a little extra care. Routine maintenance is important to keep potential problems at bay.

Flushing Your Water Heater

One of the easiest ways to keep your heater working properly is to perform a water heater flush once a year. You will need a garden hose, a regular screwdriver and a drainage area to capture the water. Following a few easy steps will help to prevent any sediment from building up inside the heater and will keep it running smoothly.

Turn off the Heater – For gas heaters, make sure the pilot light is off. Electric heaters need to be turned off at the circuit breaker.
Attach Hose – The garden hose must be connected to the drain valve. The other end of the hose should be placed in an area that can capture water and sediment. Wearing gloves is a smart idea.
Drain the Water Tank – The drain valve must be opened to allow the water to flow out. Allow several minutes to ensure the tank is empty. To help the water drain more quickly, it’s a smart idea to turn on a hot water faucet somewhere else in the house. Then turn off the valve on the water supply.
Close the Valves – After you are sure that the water and sediment have been drained, close the valves. You can then turn on the water supply.
Restore Power and Turn on Heating Element – When you are satisfied that the tank is full, turn the power back on. Then turn the heating element on.

Performing a flush of your water heater every year should keep it running well for many years.

Why You Should Call the Pros to Clean up Water Damage

1/31/2020 (Permalink)

Flood cuts done inside a commercial property, water on concrete floor, dehumidifier in middle of the room Commercial water damage in Clarkson Valley, MO

In the workplace, you probably expect to occasionally deal with cleanup issues such as spilled drinks or a small pipe leak. You should be able to handle situations such as these on your own. When it comes to something more serious such as pipe burst cleanup, you're better off getting in touch with a professional water removal company. Some damage is far too extensive for you and your business to tackle. With the help of experienced technicians, you can prevent larger issues from developing and make your workplace safe once more.

What the Pros Offer

There are many advantages to hiring a professional crew to clean up after a broken pipe or whatever caused the water damage in your Clarkson Valley, MO, office. Some of the benefits these technicians provide include the following:

  • A fast response, usually within a few hours of your call
  • A thorough process
  • The right tools and equipment for jobs of any size

How the Crew Will Approach Your Cleanup Emergency

As soon as technicians arrive, they will assess the extent of the damage. The team will determine the source of the incident and will then make a plan to restore your office, whether it's a pipe burst cleanup, cleaning up after a sewer line break or anything else. The team will start by moving all materials out of the water and tearing out ruined items such as carpet and drywall. Crews will then remove all water from the affected area and dry it with high-powered fans and dehumidifiers. After sanitizing your office, the team will rebuild as necessary.

Deciding When To Call

Some situations require a professional's skill. If you detect black water from a sewage issue, call a sewer cleanup company immediately. You should also enlist professionals if you see mold or if the damage extends through large portions of your office.
A pipe burst cleanup or sewage problem isn't something you should deal with. However, professional water removal teams are ready and willing to take care of it.

3 Ways Pretesting Can Lower Insurance Claims Costs

1/23/2020 (Permalink)

A fire destroyed five stores Fire damage in Eureka, MO

Pretesting Process - Things You May Want to Know

If your business Eureka, MO, has suffered fire damage, then your local SERVPRO may include pretesting as part of the restoration process. There are many reasons this service can be helpful, one of which is that it may help lower the costs of your insurance claim. Here’s what you may want to know.

1. Identifying Damage

Your insurance agent may recommend working with SERVPRO because they can pretest for damage. This process involves taking a chemical pad and gently swabbing each potentially damaged surface. The reaction on the pad can then tell the professional if there is damage and how severe it may be. It can be particularly useful in areas where smoke or soot damage is likely to have occurred but none can be seen. The ability to quickly test and identify damage can lead to cost savings on your claim.

2. Quickly Sort Items

The process of pretesting can help your restoration crew sort the damaged spaces and items from the unaffected ones as they go. As each test is tested the professional can look over the results and assign the appropriate cleaning procedure. Doing so may help them save steps and time later.

3. Cutting Time

This service may also help by cutting the time it takes to locate and clean damage. This occurs because the testing process allows the restoration crew to know for sure if an item has been damaged and focus their attention on the areas that need it, rather than spending time on spaces on the property that are perfectly fine. The less time the restoration process takes the more money that could be saved.

Your restoration service may go through the pretesting process in order to identify areas that have been damaged where the damage itself isn’t completely visible. This process may also help them sort the damaged items, and cut down on cleaning time. All of these are things that could help lower the costs of your claim. Be sure to talk to a professional if you have any questions.

Why Your General Liability Policy May Not Cover Mold Exposure Claims

1/8/2020 (Permalink)

Mold on drywall Mold drywall in Wildwood, MO

Why Your General Liability Policy May Not Cover Mold Exposure Claims

A rapid increase in mold insurance claims has prompted many insurance companies to make changes to their general liability policies. As a result, it may be wise to consult an insurance professional in Wildwood, MO, about how mold exclusions may affect your commercial liability coverage.

Existing Exclusions

Before recent policy modifications, several exclusions were sometimes applied to a mold claim. These exclusions include:

  • Pollution
  • Business risk
  • Owned, occupied or rented property

Pollution Exclusion

Courts have often disagreed about whether mold infestations are equivalent to the sort of discharge, dispersal or release of pollutants that pollutant exclusions were written for. There has also been some dispute over whether mold can be considered equivalent to the industrial chemicals and other substances generally considered to be pollutants.

Business Risk Exclusion

Many mold insurance claims involve allegations that mold developed in an enclosed building due to defective workmanship. Business risk exclusions have sometimes been used to exclude mold damage resulting from defective workmanship.

Owned, Occupied or Rented Property Exclusion

Landlords and building owners are sometimes sued by tenants for property damage and mold remediation costs that result from mold exposure in their buildings. Existing exclusions for owned, occupied and rented property are sometimes used to deny these claims, but are not always found to be applicable.

Mold Exclusions

Due to the inconsistent application of existing exclusions, many insurance companies decided to endorse commercial general liability policies to explicitly exclude or severely reduce coverage for claims that arise due to mold exposure. One such exclusion is the Fungi or Bacteria Exclusion Endorsement that was filed by ISO. This exclusion expressly excludes cleanup and mold remediation costs, as well as personal injury arising from mold exposure from coverage in a commercial general liability policy with this endorsement attached.
As a result of these common exclusions, your general liability policy may not cover damages that result from mold exposure. However, you may be able to purchase additional coverage for mold insurance claims.

The Vital Role of Business Interruption Insurance

12/29/2019 (Permalink)

Causes of business interruption insurance Make sure that your business interruption insurance coverage is in place before repairs begin

The Vital Role of Business Interruption Insurance

When business is running smoothly, managers may not think much about the value of business interruption insurance. When disasters strike, however, that safety net becomes very important. Some of the events that could prompt the need for this specific coverage include

  • Fire
  • Flooding
  • Earthquakes
  • Power outages
  • Vandalism

You'll need to work with your insurance provider to determine what is covered and the extent of coverage, but even a little bit of insurance protection is better than nothing at all.

The Risk for Financial Losses

A business fire can damage many of your assets. As you work through the process of cleanup, repairs, reconstruction, and other factors of reconstruction, you may be at risk for heavy financial losses. When your doors are closed, you won't bring in the same profits you would if you were operating as usual. You may also lose valuable customers if they seek out your competitors who were unaffected by the disaster.

Survive Interrupted Daily Operations

Business interruption insurance makes it possible for you to protect your business while your property is in the recovery process. Some of the things that interruption insurance covers include making payroll, monthly debt payments, and certain recovery costs.

Choose Professionals Who Value Your Time

For the best results, work with fire cleaning and reconstruction professionals who understand the time constraints of your insurance policy. All the work involved in cleaning up fire and smoke damage, removing odors and residue, repairing and rebuilding where necessary, and bringing your property back to pre-disaster condition takes time. You need to work with professionals who are aware of the potential for financial losses you face.

Don't Wait for Trouble

Choose a Ellisville, MO, commercial fire and smoke cleanup company that offers a full range of services within a tight timeframe. Make sure that your business interruption insurance coverage is in place before repairs begin. For the best results, consider the risk of disaster before you ever need any of these services.