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What You Should Know About Water

12/13/2020 (Permalink)

A splash of water with the SERPRO of Bear/New Castle logo For over 20 years, SERVPRO of Bear / New Castle has specialized in water damage repair and restoration.

Water is necessary for life but there are situations where water can cause distress—namely when it causes damage. There are many different causes of water damage, but some are more prevalent than others.

Why Is There Water Damage?

The Travelers Insurance Companies Inc. noted the top five causes of home claims between 2009 and 2015 were:

  • Exterior wind damage
  • Non-weather-related water damage
  • Hail
  • Weather-related water damage
  • Theft

It’s interesting that water damage appears twice on this list! However, there are non-weather-related and weather-related water damage situations.

Non-weather-related water damage comes from problems with plumbing and appliances.

Weather-related Water damage results from weather events such as rain and snow.

The top five causes of water damage are plumbing issues, appliance leaks, water pipe failures, old water heaters and weather.

Ways to Protect Your Home

Be sure that you are covered by your homeowner’s insurance plan. Look for these situations, which are usually covered by a standard homeowner’s policy:

  • Winter damage caused by snow and ice
  • Sewage and overflow of water, even by accident
  • Aging hot water heat systems
  • Frozen plumbing and pipes

Avoiding water-related issues and potential damage situations is possible if you are proactive. The following list of preventive fixes and routine maintenance suggestions can help you keep your home free of water damage:

  • Applying water sensors and automatic shut-off valves
  • Getting back flow valves and standpipes put in basement drains
  • Using metal mesh connection hoses on the washer and dryer
  • Clearing the gutters and downspouts of debris
  • Taking time to flush the hot water tank every six months
  • Keeping grease out the kitchen sink and drain
  • Running the sump pump every few months and cleaning it before the rainy season

Have Water or Flood Damage?
Call Us Today – (302) 392-6000

Why Choose SERVPRO of Bear/New Castle?

Properly restoring your home after a water damage event requires specialized equipment and products. This advanced equipment helps us to remove the water, even hidden moisture, quickly and efficiently. We then dry the structure with powerful dehumidifiers. Finally, our technicians will clean the affected area with professional grade cleaning and sanitizing agents for your comfort and safety.

Why SERVPRO of Bear/New Castle? Personal Protective Equipment

12/12/2020 (Permalink)

SERVPRO team member wearing a full face mask, gloves and Tyvek suit By ensuring their own safety in the field, our team members are better able to ensure your safety and the safety of your home or business.

SERVPRO of Bear/New Castle's number one concern is safety: the safety of our clients and the safety of our employees.

To make sure the job is done right, employees need to take proper precautions when working in specific situations. Each job comes with its own safety concerns. For example, flood waters can come with contaminants from things like sewage; mold remediation jobs come with possible health effects; fire damage can come with worries like smoke inhalation and possible falling debris; and biohazard incidents can come with exposure to dangerous chemicals and bodily fluids.

SERVPRO of Bear/New Castle teams are given the proper training and personal protective equipment (PPE) to ensure they are prepared to safely handle each one of those incidents and a wide range of others. They follow specific guidelines laid out by our company and by the National Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

Some of that PPE includes the following:

Tyvek Suits and Booties: which are made of a strong, but lightweight material that can protect a person from contaminants in the air. These suits cover a person from head to toe (except the face).

Dust Masks: which are lightweight masks worn around the nose and mouth to keep out less serious contaminants like typical, household dust.

Full Face Masks: which are more heavy-duty, plastic masks, seal off the entire face and include respirators. These are used in more dangerous conditions. The respirators filter out any harmful airborne pathogens and mold spores.

Gloves: different kinds of gloves are used depending on the situation. Nitrile gloves are used to protect from certain contaminants like bodily fluids. Whereas stronger rubber gloves are used to protect when handling sharp or rough objects.

Goggles: are used to protect the eyes in dangerous conditions.

Hard Hats: are used to protect employees in situations where there is a risk of building collapse or falling debris.

By ensuring their own safety in the field, our team members are better able to ensure your safety and the safety of your home or business.

If you experience an incident that requires restoration work, you can count on SERVPRO of Bear/New Castle to get the job done in the SAFEST and most efficient way. Call us any time at (302) 392-6000.

Why Choose SERVPRO of Bear/New Castle?

The past few decades have seen a rapid advancement in the technology and techniques used in the restoration industry. These advancements allow SERVPRO of Bear/New Castle Professionals to restore a property back to preloss condition quickly, reliably, and more effectively.

How to Winterize Your Home on a Budget

12/7/2020 (Permalink)

House covered in snow When a winter storm hits your home, you need the company with storm damage experience and expertise.

Winterization is the process of preparing a home for the harsh conditions of winter. It is usually performed in the fall before snow and excessive cold have arrived. Stay warm, save money and prevent damage to your home from the cold and snow with these simple winterization tips.

Clean Your Gutters

Clear leafs, tree branches and debris from your gutters. Failure to do so can result in leaks and the overflow of water whenever rain falls or snow melts. Making sure that water can flow freely through your gutters now will help prevent icicles and ice dams from forming later. 

The benefits of cleaning your gutters before winter will help you avoid the unfortunate event of your basement being flooded with water, rotted fascia boards, cracked walkways or patios and many other potential areas of damage.

Cost: Other than your sweat and time, free.

Winterize Your Pipes

When water freezes, it expands. So if the temperature of your pipes drops below 32 degrees, even for a short period, you run the risk of a pipe fracture or worse. Take precautions now to avoid a major water damage. Pipes that freeze most frequently are those that are exposed to severe cold, like outdoor hose bibs, swimming pool supply lines, water sprinkler lines, and water supply pipes in unheated interior areas like basements and crawl spaces, attics, garages, or kitchen cabinets. Also, pipes that run against exterior walls that have little or no insulation are also subject to freezing.

Consider installing specific products made to insulate water pipes like a “pipe sleeve” or installing UL-listed “heat tape,” “heat cable,” or similar materials on exposed water pipes.

Cost: Pipe Sleeve $5 to $12 per sleeve; Insulation Tape $10 per pack;  Heat Cable $20 to $150 depending on length

Flush the Water Heater

Particles and sediment can collect over time in the bottom of your water heater, hindering the unit's efficiency. Flush the water through the drain valve to clear out the material and keep your heater functioning at its best. 

Cost: 100% free if you do it yourself!

Clockwise Ceiling Fans

Set your ceiling fans to move in a clockwise direction. The gentle updraft pushes warm air, which naturally rises to the ceiling, down along the walls and back the floor. Homeowners who use ceiling fans during the winter can save as much as 15 percent on heating bills.

Cost: free if you have a fan.

Window Insulation Film

Window insulation film is a plastic film which can be applied to glass windows to reduce heat transfer. Window insulation film can keep up to 70% of heat from leaking out of the windows.

Cost: $5 to $15 per kit.

Weatherstripping

Place weatherstripping along doorjambs, and in the gaps between windows and sashes, to keep the chilly breezes out and the heat in. Weatherstripping can save you up to 20 percent on your heating bill. Choose a type of weatherstripping that will withstand the friction, weather, temperature changes, and wear and tear associated with its location. 

Cost: $5 to $10 per roll.

Draft Guards

In a drafty room, heat escapes under the door. A Draft Guard is a flexible, rubber strip that seals the gap at the bottom of the door to keep out drafts and prevent heat loss.

Cost: $10 to $20 or free if you place a rolled towel at the bottom of the door.  

Replace Filters

Well-oiled, clean HVAC machinery uses less energy and provides more effective heating and cooling than dirty equipment. A dirty filter will restrict airflow through the heating or cooling system.

Throughout the winter, evaluate the filters monthly and replace them if there's any accumulation of debris. Furnaces and heat pumps are operating constantly to stay ahead of the cold, circulating more air through the filter, leaving behind ample dust and debris to coat the filter. 

Cost: $20 to $35 for a pack of filters.

Fiberglass Insulation

Fiberglass insulation slows the spread of heat, cold, and sound in structures. The material does this by trapping pockets of air, keeping rooms warm in the winter. For maximum heat retention, pack fiberglass insulation around basement doors, windows in unused rooms, and window AC units. Make sure your attic floor is insulated to stop heat from escape through the attic as it rises! 

 Cost: around $25 per roll.

Programmable Thermostat

A programmable thermostat relieves homeowners of that responsibility, enabling them to configure a heating and cooling cycle that corresponds to their daily schedules. The US Department of Energy says you can save as much as 1% on your energy bill for every degree you lower your home's temperature during the winter. Install a programmable thermostat to save money by keeping the temp down when you're not at home. 

Cost: prices vary from basic versions $35 to $60 to smart-home options in the $100 to $200 range.

Caulking

Any remaining gaps in siding, windows, or doors can be filled with caulk. For extra drafty windows and doors, caulk the inside too, pulling off moldings to fill all gaps in the insulation. 

Cost: $10 for a caulk gun and less than $5 for a tube of caulk.

Chimney Balloon

A chimney balloon is a balloon made of special heat reactive, durable material. Its purpose is to block the opening of a chimney that is not in use. If you do not regularly use your fireplace, a chimney balloon is the ideal solution to stop chimney drafts and save energy.

Cost: $25 to $60 depending on the size of the balloon.

Have Winter Storm Damage?
Call SERVPRO of Bear/New Castle Today (302) 392-6000

Why Choose SERVPRO of Bear / New Castle?

When you are dealing with winter storm and water damage, immediate action is crucial. You should choose the company with storm damage experience and expertise that has the resources and equipment to handle the job. SERVPRO of Bear / New Castle can respond immediately to storm and flooding conditions.

Avoid A Water Damage in Your Commercial Property By Making Your Appliances A Priority

12/7/2020 (Permalink)

Appliances under a blue umbrella SERVPRO of Bear/New Castle is ready to respond immediately and work quickly to clean or restore your business.

Leaking and blocked appliances may not seem like a top priority, but a small leak can quickly cause a great deal of damage to your business. Paying attention to your appliances—and keeping them up to date—can save you money in the long run and ensure your business avoids interruptions. Here are a few tips for making your appliances a priority:

Schedule Time Every Friday Afternoon

A small leak over a two-day weekend can create a large amount of damage, possibly even forcing you to temporarily close your business. Block out time every Friday afternoon to walk around your property and inspect your appliances. Make sure they’re hooked up to a water source, and check for any blockages or leaks.

Don't Procrastinate

When you discover a problem, have it fixed immediately. Replace a leaky hose, or call a plumber to clear the blockage in your drains or sinks before it causes damage to your property. Finding and fixing an issue early on will save you a lot of trouble, time, and money in your business.

Mark Your Calendar

Mark your calendar for all expiration dates and recommended replacement dates on the appliance parts and hoses. Check the owner’s manual for expiration and replacement time frames.

Have Water Damage Caused by An Appliance? Call SERVPRO of Bear/New Castle 24/7 – (302) 392-6000

Why Choose SERVPRO of Bear/New Castle?

Because emergencies don’t keep regular business hours, neither do we – we are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, even on holidays. The professionals at SERVPRO of Bear/New Castle have specialized in commercial water restoration for over 20 years. Our experience and expertise means you can minimize lost revenue and productivity and feel “Like it never even happened.”

Cooking Fire Safety Tips You Can Be Thankful For

12/6/2020 (Permalink)

A cooked turkey on fire SERVPRO of Bear/New Castle can make a holiday cooking fire "Like it never even happened"

Thanksgiving is the nation’s leading day for cooking fires. According to the National Fire Protection Association, the number of cooking fires on Thanksgiving is three times as high as on any other day of the year.

In addition to the hazards posed by stovetops, turkey fryers and candles contribute to the elevated fire risk. When following a few basic precautions, preventing a cooking fires is simple. Remember, while you should always have a fire-extinguisher nearby and know how to use it, don’t delay calling 9-1-1. Ideally, use the extinguisher immediately, as someone else calls 9-1-1.

Stovetops and Ovens

It’s easy to become distracted when preparing several dishes at once while also trying to entertain guests. Cooking fires can easily be prevented by following a few simple precautions:

  • Clean your stove and oven. Remove food and grease buildup from burners, stovetop and oven.
  • Stay in the kitchen when cooking on the stovetop.
  • Stay in the home when cooking a turkey, set a timer, and check on it frequently.
  • Keep children away from the stove.
  • Have a flame-resistant oven mitt, potholder or lid nearby to smother any flames.
  • If you have an oven fire, turn off the heat and keep the oven door closed.
  • Check to make sure your smoke alarms are working properly and have an escape plan that the entire family knows if there is a fire.

Turkey Fryers

Never use a turkey fryer indoors, in the garage or on a covered patio because of the fire hazard. Many turkey fires occur while the oil is being heated. Fryers can easily tip over, spilling scalding hot oil, leading to fires, burns or other injuries. Since most fryers do not have automatic thermostatic controls, oil may heat until it catches fire. The sides, lids, and handles get extremely hot and may cause burns.

Turkey Frying Safety Tips:

  • Read and follow the manufacturer’s guidelines.
  • Completely thaw the turkey.
  • Do not overfill the fryer with oil. Before filling the fryer with oil, test it out with water. Place the turkey inside and then fill it with water until the bird is submerged. Mark the water line on the fryer so you will know how much oil to put in the fryer.
  • Never leave the fryer unattended.
  • Keep children and pets away from the fryer.
  • Only use the oil recommended by the manufacturer.
  • Allow at least two feet of space between the liquid propane tank and the fryer burner.
  • Potholders or oven mitts should be well-insulated; wear safety goggles to protect eyes from oil splatter.
  • If oil begins to smoke, immediately turn OFF the gas supply.
  • Keep an all-purpose fire extinguisher nearby.
  • Never use water to extinguish a grease fire.

Candles

Candles are responsible for an estimated 15,600 residential fires a year, causing 150 deaths, 1,270 injuries, and $539 million in property damage. More than half of candle fires are a result of a candle being placed too close to flammable holiday decorations. Always keep children in mind when decorating.

Cooking Fire Putting A Damper On Your Holiday Fun? Call SERVPRO of Bear/New Castle – (302) 392-6000

Why Choose SERVPRO of Bear/New Castle

SERVPRO of Bear/New Castle is here to minimize the effects of a fire on both your home and your life. Our certified professionals are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week with specialized equipment, expertise, and empathy to get you through this crisis.

Cleaning Tips to Help Prepare Your Commercial Property for the Upcoming Winter

12/6/2020 (Permalink)

Yellow "Cleaning in Progress" sign on the floor of a commercial property Whether it’s removing an odor problem or deep cleaning flooring or carpets, you can rely on SERVPRO of Bear/Castle

It’s the perfect time to make a cleaning and maintenance plans for this fall and the coming winter. SERVPRO of Bear/New Castle offers the following commercial property cleaning tips to help make the seasonal transition as complete and easy as possible. 

Clean & Recoat Hard Flooring

Floors take a beating during adverse weather conditions. Scrub hard flooring, especially entry floors, to remove soils and recoat to give the floor added protection. Know product specifications: Some floor care chemicals, as an example, are best applied at certain temperature ranges.

Repair Floor Defects

Repairing floor defects will prevent soils and ice melt from becoming trapped in chips, cracks, crevices, etc.

Carpet Cleaning

Many facilities delay cleaning carpets before and during the winter months. This can be a mistake as the carpets can become saturated with contaminants and impact indoor environmental quality. 

Restrooms

Cleaning professionals often develop cleaning habits, especially in restrooms. Seasonal transitions call for taking a fresh look at restroom cleaning procedures and adopting some new technologies, products and methods where appropriate.

Floor Mats

Install 15 feet of matting inside each entrance to capture ice melt, salt and sand before it is tracked throughout the facility.

Air Ducts & HVAC Cleaning

Ventilation systems are often the biggest culprit in poor indoor air quality. Make it a priority to inspect and clean the ductwork of your commercial property.

HEPA Filters

An easy way to remember when to clean or change HEPA filters is by changing them when Daylight Savings Time begins and ends.

Commercial Cleaning Professionals

While all the above are useful tips in keeping your office or commercial building clean and tidy, they can take up valuable time you simply aren’t able to fit into your working day. Hiring the commercial cleaning professionals at SERVPRO of Bear/New Castle ensures you can concentrate on more pressing matters, yet still boast a clean, clutter free office space.

For More Information on Commercial Cleaning Services, Call Us Today – (302) 392-6000

Why SERVPRO of Bear / New Castle?

You don’t have time to worry about the common wear and tear that gradually soils your office. When grime, odor, and moisture challenges go beyond the scope of your regular janitorial staff, you can rely on SERVPRO of Bear/New Castle to make your workspace look its very best.

How to Get a Quote for Fire Restoration Services

12/6/2020 (Permalink)

SERVPRO professional standing on a porch of a home with a homeowner SERVPRO of Bear/New Castle is here to minimize the effects of a fire on both your home and your life.

When a fire damages your property, you want to know how much the repairs will cost. Restoration costs are determined by the extent of the damage. Expenses will increase depending on several factors.

  • The amount of damaged building materials and contents
  • Materials or contents that can be cleaned
  • Materials or contents that must be replaced

Work with Your Insurance Provider

Typically, fire damage restoration is covered under most insurance policies. You should contact your insurance provider to review your coverage and policy limits for fire cleanup and restoration services. Your insurance provider will also be able to recommend a certified fire restoration company.

Get Professional Help

SERVPRO of Bear/New Castle’s professionals have the training, experience, and equipment to handle residential and commercial fire damage emergencies.  After carefully inspecting and testing adjoining rooms of your property to determine the extent of the fire, smoke, and soot damage, SERVPRO of Bear/New Castle will provide you with a detailed scope of work as well as the estimate cost of these recommended services. If you work with a novice or try to make the repairs yourself, you may not follow fire codes, which can cost you more in the long run. In addition, professionals often get better prices on building materials and get the job done faster.

Need a Fire Restoration Estimate?  Call Us Today – (302) 392-6000

Why Choose SERVPRO of Bear / New Castle?

When a fire emergency happens, you need fire repair and restoration professionals to help you recover from the devastation and minimize further financial and material loss. We understand that the hours and days following a fire emergency can leave you feeling vulnerable, and know that the damage left by a fire often extends beyond the structure itself. SERVPRO of Bear/New Castle is here to minimize the effects of a fire on both your home and your life. Our certified professionals are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week with specialized equipment, expertise, and empathy to get you through this crisis.

What Is Causing Mold in Your Commercial Building?

12/4/2020 (Permalink)

Mold growing on the walls of a commercial office SERVPRO of Bear / New Castle is experienced in commercial mold remediation.

Knowing what caused the mold growth in your commercial property may help you avoid the need for more mold cleanup in the future.

Moisture

Mold needs moisture to survive. A leaking pipe or other plumbing problems can create a constant source of moisture in your. High humidity in a building can also cause mold growth. If your facility has 70% humidity, you may want to find a way to reduce the moisture in the air.

High Temperatures

Warmth is another element loved by black mold and many other types of fungus. Temperatures in empty warehouses or busy factories can get high. When possible, try to keep your buildings below the mid-70s on the Fahrenheit scale to discourage the mold growth.

Stagnant Air

Try to keep some airflow going even when you don’t plan to run your heating or air conditioning unit. Airflow can help prevent mold growth by keeping the area dry and moisture levels low.

Darkness

Another environmental element that could lead to more mold growth is darkness. Darkness alone might not be enough to cause mold growth, but it is often associated with damp, stagnant places. The environment of your commercial building can play a big role in the development of mold.

Have a Mold Problem? Call SERVPRO of Bear/New Castle Today – (302) 392-6000

Why Choose SERVPRO of Bear / New Castle?

Mold can spread quickly through a commercial property if left untreated. SERVPRO of Bear/New Castle can respond quickly, working to first contain the infestation to help prevent its spread to other parts of the building. Next, we will begin the remediation process, working safely and effectively to manage the situation. We have the training, experience, and equipment to contain the mold infestation and remediate it to preloss condition.

Stabilizing Your Warehouse After A Water Damage

12/4/2020 (Permalink)

Warehouse with boxes on shelves SERVPRO of Bear / New Castle can respond immediately to your commercial water damage emergency regardless of the size or scope of the damage.

Warehouse owners know all too well the risk of water damage to their premises. Water that enters a storage area might damage both the facility itself and everything stored inside. Concerns about water damage are justified no matter what kind of warehouse you run—and it is even more worrying if you happen to store food, flowers, or anything else requiring climate control.  

Commercial Water Restoration Process

 The first thing to do after a leak or flood in your warehouse is to call SERVPRO of Bear/New Castle for water removal services. Our expert team will arrive ready to remove all the water using a combination of freestanding, truck-mounted, and submersible pumps. However, water removal is only the first step in remediating the situation. Our overall aim is to restore your warehouse “Like it never even happened.”  

We understand the importance of optimum conditions within your premises, such as temperature and humidity. That is why our IICRC-certified technicians pay close attention to measuring moisture and humidity and devising an appropriate drying plan.  

We equip our teams with a range of perfectly calibrated instruments, including thermo-hygrometers, moisture meters and probes, and thermal imaging software. Thermo-hygrometers measure the humidity in the air, i.e. the amount of moisture the air is holding. We also use moisture meters and probes to measure the moisture content of particular parts of the warehouse, such as the walls, storage units, or under the floor. Finally, thermal imaging techniques allow us to see hidden patches of moisture that are invisible to the naked eye.

Once we clearly understand the situation, we devise a drying plan to restore your warehouse to the best temperature and humidity levels. Our experienced team is well versed in calculating the correct number and placement of dehumidifiers and air movers for maximum effect.

Stabilizing the conditions in your warehouse is a vital part of recovery after water removal, and you can count on SERVPRO of Bear/New Castle to get the job done right. Protecting your property is our highest priority.

Water Damage or Flooding In Your Warehouse? Call Us Today (302) 392-6000

Why Choose SERVPRO of Bear / New Castle?

The professionals at SERVPRO of Bear/New Castle have specialized in commercial water restoration for over 20 years. Our highly trained professionals use only state-of-the-art equipment and document every step of the drying process, ensuring the job is done correctly from the initial phone call to the final bill.

SERVPRO of Bear/New Castle has the training, experience, and equipment to handle large commercial flooding or water damage emergencies. Whether your water emergency occurs in a small office building or big box store, we will respond quickly to mitigate the damage and manage the restoration project through to its completion. When it comes to your business, time is money.

Washing Machine Water Damage

12/4/2020 (Permalink)

Soapy water spilling out of a front loading washing machine If you have water damage caused by your washing machine, call SERVPRO of Bear/New Castle at (302) 392-6000.

Washing Machines Are One of the Most Common Sources of Water Damage in the Home

The national average claim for water damage caused by a washing machine is over $5,000. Understanding your wash machine’s functions, possible risks and preventative maintenance required, is key to avoiding a costly water damage.

Common Causes of Washing Machine Water Damage

Supply Hose

Inspect the hoses for cracks, holes, pinches and worn out gaskets. You should also check to make sure the hoses are connected tightly at both sides of the intake water lines. Hoses should be replaced after 5 years.

Water damage caused by intake water lines contain very few biological contaminants and is a category 1 water damage.

Drainage

Verify the drain hose is properly secured to the back of the machine and to the utility sink or standpipe. You should also inspect drain hose for clogs.

Standpipes drain directly into the sewer. A sewage back can cause a category 3 water damage

Overloading

Review the user’s manual for load limit to avoid overloading.

Internal leaks are considered a category 2 water damage due to the exposure of water that contacts detergent and machine parts.

Does Insurance Cover Water Damage Caused by Washing Machines?

If your washing machine causes water damage, your homeowners insurance will typically cover the cost to repair your home. However, it will not cover the costs to repair or replace the washing machine.

Have Water Damage?
Call
SERVPRO of Bear/New Castle(302) 392-6000

Why Choose SERVPRO of Bear / New Castle?

When your home has water damage from washing machine leaks, we have the expertise and equipment to properly restore your property. Our experience and scientific approach to water removal and water cleanup enable us to properly dry and restore your property.