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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Archived Blog Posts

Surviving the Flood

5/26/2021 (Permalink)

We live in a world where mother nature has a mind of her own at times, and natural disaster can strike at anytime and can ruin the normal flow of life we once had. The nice furniture, flooring, and decor that once occupied our home, now washed away by water. Whether the flooding that has occurred in your home was because of a pipe bursting, a sewer backup, faulty appliance, a heavy rain or even rising floodwaters, there are important steps you should take in order to keep you and your family safe. 

After any water damage situation, your primary focus should be safety:

  • Is it safe to stay in the house?
  • Electrical and "slip and fall" hazards are some of the most prevalent concerns.
  • Only do activities that are safe for you to perform.
  • Wet materials can be VERY heavy. Be careful!

You and your family may not even be thinking about flooding, but rather tornado damage or hurricane damage. But with any severe storm or rain there is always a chance of flooding. And even appliances can cause flooding. Here at SERVPRO® of Baldwin County we want you to be as prepared and safe as possible, therefore we put together some do and don'ts to put into practice after you have encountered flooding within your home.

What To Do After Flooding

  • Remove excess water by mopping and blotting.
  • Wipe excess water from wood furniture after removal of lamps and tabletop items.
  • Remove and prop wet upholstery and cushions.
  • Place aluminum foil or wood blocks between furniture legs and wet carpeting.
  • Turn air conditioning on for maximum drying in summer.
  • Remove colored rugs from wet carpeting.
  • Remove art objects to a safe, dry place.
  • Gather loose items from floors.

What NOT To Do After Flooding

  • Don't leave wet fabrics in place. Hang furs and leather goods.
  • Don't leave books, magazines or other colored items on wet carpet or floors.
  • Don't use your household vacuum to remove water.
  • Don't use television or other household appliances.
  • Don't turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet, and keep out of rooms where ceilings are sagging.

 Reminders:

  1. Do not panic, take a breath and understand that although today feels like the worst day ever. Things WILL get better.
  2. Keep safety always at the forefront of your mind (stop the water source, shut all electricity off, etc.)
  3. Call SERVPRO in order to get things clean, dry and back to beautiful as quickly as possible.

 Why SERVPRO?

  • 24-Hour Emergency Service
  • Faster to Any Size Disaster
  • Highly Trained Water Restoration Technicians
  • A Trusted Leader in the Water Restoration Industry
  • Locally Owned and Operated
  • Advanced Water Inspection, Extraction, and Drying Equipment

Tips for Keeping Your Home Dry During Heavy Rain

4/21/2021 (Permalink)

Water damage can happen to your home in a variety of ways. Many homeowners (including some here in Baldwin County) think that only severe storms and floods or a major appliance malfunction involving your washing machine or dishwasher cause water damage.

But heavy rains are a significant water damage threat, too. These drenching storms frequently happen in our area during the spring and summer months. If your home is not prepared, these storms can cause costly damage.

Water Damage Is Common

Millions of Americans file claims to repair home water damage every year. Insurance industry experts estimate that as many as one out of every 50 homeowners will file a water damage claim this year.

Depending on how many people live in your neighborhood, that can mean someone you know will have to deal with water damage this year.

Homeowners can’t always avoid water damage. For example, severe storms, tornadoes and hurricanes can cause significant damage to many homes in the community. And homeowners can’t avoid these natural disasters.

But sometimes more common problems, namely heavy rains, can cause water damage to your home. Homeowners can avoid this type of damage if they ensure your home is well-maintained.

Getting Ready for Wet Weather

Our teams are prepared to help homeowners repair water damage. We’re experts, and that means we see many of the issues that cause the damage in the first place.

Because we know how the damage happens, we’ve put together some ideas to help you avoid it:

Check your yard. Knowing how your yard drains is vital to protecting your home. If you notice that your yard is draining toward your home, then you might want to connect with a landscaping expert to look for ways to protect your yard.

Choose the right type of landscaping. Many people choose plants and flowers for aesthetic effect. But choosing landscaping items carefully can ensure your home is prepared for heavy rains. Native plants, trees and bushes can be vital in protecting your home from water damage. Talk with landscaping experts in the area or visit a native plant sale for tips and ideas.

Look into sealing your roof. Experts estimate that almost 95% of damage is caused by water finding its way through gaps in your shingles, which can be prevented with this step. It’s definitely worth considering.

If you need help dealing with damage caused by water, fire or any other issue, we’re here to help you restore your home. We have crews who are available 247 in the event of an emergency. Contact us at any time to learn more about us and how we can help you restore your home to its original state. Serving all of Baldwin County here on the Alabama Gulf Coast. Call us at 251-928-9625

Did a Recent Gulf Coast Storm Cause Flood Damage?

4/21/2021 (Permalink)

SERVPRO is Here for Help With Flood Damage and Restoration – Crews are Available 24/7 in Baldwin County.

Flood Damage is No Match for SERVPRO – Call Us When You Need Prompt Flood Restoration Services

For emergency services water damage assistance, SERVPRO can be at your Baldwin County property within hours to get to work. Whether you need flooding cleanup or help with a leaking roof from storms, we have the proven methods and all of the best equipment for the job.

We bring industrial-grade equipment to help us achieve our cleanup goals when you call us for flood damage after a storm. Some of this equipment includes:

• Extraction Units – including large truck-mounted or portable units

• Light Wands – also known as carpet wands

• Deep Extraction Tools – including self-propelled extractors and stationary tools

• Pumps – including high-pressure pumps, self-priming trash pumps, and electric submersible pumps

SERVPRO of Baldwin County is available for all your needs regarding flood damage and water damage repairs after a storm. Call us at 251-928-9625.

Don't Let Water Damage Ruin Your Summer Fun!

4/7/2021 (Permalink)

With the temperatures quickly rising and the hot summer season headed straight towards us, our natural inclination is to turn up the A/C indoors!

However, the risk of water damage still poses a threat even during the summer months.

The extended use of air conditioning units, if not properly maintained, can cause drainage issues. To avoid this, make sure to change your air filter regularly. Regular inspections and cleanings are also important to prevent and stop any issues in your unit from worsening. One thing to keep an eye on is the drainage pan. Check to make sure water isn’t leaking and accumulating in the pan. Especially in the hotter weather; mold, mildew, and fungus can easily grow and spread.

Another thing that keeps in mind is the potential for pipes to burst. Although burst pipes are more common during the colder months, hot summer weather can still cause this headache for a home

or property owner. A good rule of thumb is to notice whenever there is a change in your water pressure. While it could be simply just an irritation, it could also be a sign that something bigger is on the verge of happening. This could be a result of corrosion build-up which leads to leaks and eventually, water getting into your home or office.

The risk for pipes bursting doesn’t stop there. If you notice cracks appearing on the walls, especially around the corner, it’d be safe to assume there have been changes in your foundation. An easy solution, however, is to consistently water the soil and even place plants around the perimeter of the foundation. The plants help moderate the temperature of the soil and can also serve to hold the ground together with their roots.

The last thing any home or property owner wants to deal with is water damage, no matter the weather! We are here 24/7 365 days to service your Baldwin County property. Here on the Alabama Gulf Coast, we make it look "Like it never even happened." Give us a call 251-928-9625

2021 Fire Pit Safety

4/7/2021 (Permalink)

Warmer temperatures and longer days are finally upon us!

This time of year is one of the best because it’s finally time to gather around the fire pit and enjoy time with friends and family. We know this is a great way to gather in the backyard during the warmer months. Burgers on the grill, drinks in hand, and some background music is a sure way to have everyone in a good mood. Here are some quick and simple fire pit safety tips to keep the fire bright and the mood light:

1. Clear all flammable materials away from your fire pit. Make sure it’s kept 10 feet away from the home or building. 

2. Pile dirt or rocks to keep the fire on the ground from escaping 

3. Before lighting your fire, check the wind direction. If it’s too windy, do not light your fire pit as the wind can cause the flames to travel.

4. Contrary to popular belief, lighting fluid is not safe for lighting a fire pit. Use a commercial fire starter kick with kindling on top. 

5. Once the fire pit is lit, never leave it unattended and never leave children or pets near the fire pit without adult supervision.

6. Avoid  softwoods like pine or cedar to prevent flying sparks and flame “pops”, 

7. Only put enough fuel to keep the fire burning gently to prevent flare-ups and uncontrollable flames. 

8. To extinguish the flames, use water to drown out the fire and stir it with a shovel to make sure it’s fully extinguished. Use the shovel to extinguish any escaped flames as well

9. Dispose of the ashes in a metal can use only for fire pit ash storage. Careful, even after a few days the ashes are still hot enough to cause a fire. 

10. Accidents happen, even with the correct preventative measures taken. Having a fire extinguisher nearby can greatly reduce the risk of the fire getting out of control. 

If you have fire damage in your Baldwin County property, give us a call at 251-928-9625! We are here 24/7 365 days to service the Alabama Gulf Coast!

Customer Safety is Important To Us!

3/12/2021 (Permalink)

At SERVPRO of Baldwin County, we believe taking care of our customers is about more than just completing the job. It is about how you do that job, what tools you use and going that "extra mile". One way in which we go that "extra mile" is by making customer safety a top priority. This may require added costs or additional resources, but we truly believe that there are no shortcuts when it comes to providing exceptional service for our customers.  Here are some extra steps we take to ensure the highest level of safety for our customers on every job site:

  • Products - We believe in using the safest "green" products available.
    • Benefect is a botanical, plant based, hospital grade disinfecting solution that poses no health hazards to humans or animals.
  • Training and Certification - Our technicians undergo rigorous training to ensure that they utilize proper techniques to ensure safe environments for our crews and our customers.
    • IICRC Certification - our team holds a total of 31 certifications across the board
    • OSHA 10 and OSHA 30 Certification
  • Protocols and Standards
    • PPE
    • Proper Containment
    • Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned
    • Proper disposal of biohazard waste

If you need service, you can reach SERVPRO of Baldwin County at 251-928-9625. 24 hours a day, 365 days a year…because disasters don’t wait!

Why Choose SERVPRO of Baldwin County?

3/10/2021 (Permalink)

For over 5 decades, the name SERVPRO has been associated with remediation and restoration excellence. We have led the industry in innovation and customer satisfaction.  We follow all IICRC standards and make sure our highly trained team is always up to date in all certification areas.  IICRC sets the high standards for the cleaning and restoration industries. Many people ask, “What does it mean to be an IICRC certified firm?” It means here at SERVPRO of Baldwin County, we strictly follow and enforce the latest and best industry practices and standards! SERVPRO of Baldwin County is the trusted choice in Baldwin County when something unexpected happens. You can trust that each of our team members are highly trained with the proper knowledge and tools to effectively complete the job.

From weekly Training Sessions to ongoing certification classes opportunities throughout the year, our employees are continuously strengthening their knowledge.  In times of disaster and crisis, it is critically important to choose a company who will not only get the job done, but done correctly.  This expertise helps us to offer confident and thorough recovery efforts, but also helps to push our entire team to exceed the expectations of home and business owners throughout our community.  

Give us a call today if you need services on the Alabama Gulf Coast! 251-928-9625

SERVPROXIDE Disinfects and Sanitizes!

3/10/2021 (Permalink)

One of our products SERVPROXIDETM is our proprietary hospital-grade disinfectant registered with the EPA. It is a stabilized chlorine dioxide-based antimicrobial which carries the EPA’s lowest toxicity rating. The product itself doesn’t carry any fragrances other than a mild cleaning odor which dissipates quickly making it a great product for people with chemical or odor sensitivities. There are many different applications for SERVPROXIDETM. It can eliminate odors through disinfecting and oxidation rather than just covering them up. That can be done by applying the product directly with towels or through misting or spraying which is often used when we clean HVAC systems. It has even been utilized in electrostatic spraying for an even application on surfaces inside buildings. In fact, SERVPROXIDETM is the disinfectant we have used when we have been asked to clean and disinfect COVID-19 in homes and businesses here in Wichita. The CDC recommends the usage of a labeled hospital-grade disinfectant with claims against similar types of organisms to COVID-19 and SERVPROXIDE has EPA-approved claims against things like Feline coronavirus, Canine coronavirus, staphylococcus, E.coli, Salmonella, Rotavirus, and Swine flu. When you use SERVPRO, you can have rest at ease knowing that our team is using hospital-grade disinfectant registered with the EPA. Our chemists are even able to advise us in unorthodox situations to utilize our suite of cleaning products to clean and deodorize even the strongest and strangest combination of smells and soils.

5 Safety Tips for Cold Weather

2/17/2021 (Permalink)

Too many homes suffer from fire damage that could have been prevented with just a little foresight and planning. In order to help you keep your family safe from fire during the cold weather days, here are 5 of the most important Winter Fire Safety Tips you should act on:

Check Your Smoke Alarms

Ideally, you would have checked your smoke alarm batteries when the clocks changed. But now is the season when it might actually make a difference, so make sure that your batteries are good for the winter.

Also, there should be smoke alarms in every bedroom plus the kitchen and laundry room at bare minimum. Make sure you have enough smoke alarms strategically placed all around your home.

Inspect Your Chimney

If you use a fireplace, you should know that they can produce creosote, which is a flammable substance.

If your family likes to light fires in the fireplace, you should get an annual chimney inspection to ensure there are no fire hazards.

And don’t forget to use dry, seasoned wood, which will give you bright flames with less smoke. Excess smoke could lead to smoke damage.

Always Use a Screen for Your Fireplace

Whether you prefer a metal screen or a screen of tempered glass, you want to make sure to protect against any sparks that might otherwise stray from the fireplace.

Even with a screen in place, be sure to keep curious children and pets safely away from the fireplace. Also, any potentially flammable fabrics or materials should be kept at least three feet away from a lit fire.

Maintain Your Furnace

Typically, it’s a good idea to invest in an annual inspection from a professional. They can check your system for the signs of wear and tear or potential damage that could lead to furnace problems.

Use Candles and Space Heaters with Caution

Candle create a lovely atmosphere and may even provide extra light on the darkest of days. Make sure, however, they are placed securely where they won’t get knocked over, as well as safe out of the reach of young children and pets.

And don’t forget to blow them out when you leave the room!

Similarly, with space heaters, you want to make sure to keep sufficient clear space around them (typically at least 3 feet all the way around) to prevent a potential fire hazard. Make sure the heater you use has an automatic shut-off switch so that its internal mechanisms won’t overheat.

And make sure to turn it off before you go to sleep or move to a different room!

Here at SERVPRO of Baldwin County, we want to help keep you safe from a possible fire damage. We’re known not only for our reliability and expertise as a professional restoration and cleaning services provider, but people love us for our friendly customer service too.

For help with Fire Damage cleanup and restoration, you can give us a call any time 24/7. 251-928-9625

The Emergency Ready Profile (ERP) System is Designed with Business Owners in Mind

1/15/2021 (Permalink)

Your commercial property is always at risk of being damaged by natural elements and disasters. If your business gets hit by a disaster, you’ll need a commercial restoration company with the proper training, experience and resources to return your property to “Like it never even happened.”

We are faster to any disaster and use advanced technology to take care of any commercial restoration need.

SERVPRO of Baldwin County technicians first identify the extent of the problem, and then work with care and sensitivity to rescue and restore the area to normal conditions. We understand that every hour spent cleaning up is an hour of lost revenue and productivity. So when an emergency situation arises in your business, give us a call and we’ll be there fast with the help you need.

The SERVPRO Emergency Ready Profile (ERP) system exists to help you get emergency mitigation services to your business as fast as possible after a disaster. The ERP system is designed with business owners in mind and allows you to upload relevant documents, information, and building layouts that help our technicians react fast and control the situation better than if you had placed a standard phone call. The ERP system is free to use and has an official mobile app to allow you to call for help at the touch of a button.

If you are preparing for a disaster or recovering from one we can help! SERVPRO of Baldwin County covers all of Baldwin County on the Alabama Gulf Coast!

Call us at 251-928-9625

Issues from Water Intrusion in the Commercial Environment

1/15/2021 (Permalink)

Many commercial structures have a larger volume water entering the premises through plumbing supply lines, and at a higher water pressure. The quantity of outgoing sewage is also greater than a typical residence. Commercial buildings tend to be of larger square footage than a home, so entry points for water intrusion through areas like the roof, exterior walls or windows are greater in number.

Water intrusion in commercial buildings can damage high-value equipment like computers and building services such as HVAC, lighting, elevators and security equipment. Common long-term consequences of water damage; like the growth of toxic mold, may be even more problematic than in a home due to the larger occupancy of a business or commercial enterprise. When a greater number of people with a wider range of sensitivity are exposed to mold and bacteria spores, health impacts may be significantly magnified, perhaps leading to an enforced closure of the facility until the situation is fully remediated.

Typical issues from water intrusion in the commercial environment include:

•Water from roof leaks penetrating through ceilings. Chronic leakage through the roof may proceed unnoticed for long periods, hidden by suspended ceiling panels or in electrical or HVAC service areas above.

•Ruptures of water supply lines typically release clean (white) water.  Sewage backups or leaks in drain pipes release toxic (black) water that may be a biohazard and require evacuation of the premises.

•Flooding from external sources can result from heavy rains, storms such as hurricanes, rapid snow melt or local overflowing lakes or rivers.

•Moisture intrusion through the building envelope is typically more subtle. Humid outdoor air may be drawn in through structural cracks and gaps. Over a period, chronic dampness forms in spaces like wall voids, unventilated attics and service areas, spawning hidden mold growth that persists unseen.

For professional remediation of water intrusion in commercial buildings and secondary damage such as mold growth, contact SERVPRO of Baldwin County! We service all of Baldwin County here on the Alabama Gulf Coast! Call us at 251-928-9625

Mold and Wallpaper

1/13/2021 (Permalink)

Are you flipping a house in the Baldwin County/Alabama Gulf Coast area? If you renovate homes often, do you find that a lot of older homes have wallpaper?

The wallpaper trend was very popular back in the day, and you may want to remove it for a more updated modern look. When removing old wallpaper, you may see "mold" behind it. This is due to the long term moisture that could be trapped behind the wallpaper and the sheetrock. This is more common in humid areas of the home such as a bathroom. Mold can begin to grow due to the area not being able to dry properly. 

If you find mold while renovating your home, give SERVPRO of Baldwin County a call at 251-928-9625. We are open 24/7 365 days!

Thermal Fogging

1/13/2021 (Permalink)

As experts in deodorization, SERVPRO of Baldwin County is trained to eliminate smoke odors in your Baldwin County/Alabama Gulf Coast home.

Fires can be especially devastating to your home or business. After the fire trucks leave, your property will likely suffer from not only fire and smoke damage, but also widespread water damage and flooding from firefighting efforts. SERVPRO of Baldwin County have specialized in fire and water damage restoration training and experience to quickly clean up and restore your home to pre-fire condition. They also can remove the pervasive smoke odor by doing Thermal fogging.

What is Thermal fogging?

A Hand held devise that takes a liquid and converts it to steam/fog. The technicians move around the structure with the devise to “fog” all areas affected by smoke and smoke odors to neutralize odors.

Thermal fogging is an effective smoke odor removal procedure because it recreates the fire related properties of heat and pressurization. Porous material pick up thermally activated deodorant droplets in the same manner in which they picked up the smoke odors, closely duplicating what occurs during a fire.

Some jobs are best left to the professionals, call SERVPRO of Baldwin County for any questions or to schedule services 251-928-9625.

24 Hour Remediation Services

1/8/2021 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Baldwin County is ready to answer your call 24/7/365!

As an independently owned business, we understand that every hour lost is a customer and revenue lost. With our highly trained and certified technicians, we can prevent loses such as water damage and mold from being long-term problem for your business. Being a 24-hour franchise, we have a flexible schedule to work around time strains you may have. 

We have the experience and the technology needed to solve any problem. If your business or residence is damaged by water, fire, or any other force of mother nature, Do not hesitate to call SERVPRO of Baldwin County at 251-928-9625.

We are here to make it "Like it never even happened." Give us a call if you need mitigation services for your home or business in the Baldwin County area! 

Winter is the Biggest Season for Home Fires

1/6/2021 (Permalink)

Did you know...

The threat of a home catching on fire is the greatest during the winter months? Half of all home fires occur during the months of December, January and February. 1 in 7 house fires is a result of malfunctioning or misused heating equipment.

Here are some tips to keep your home safe while keeping warm during the winter.

  • Have your fireplace, heating vents and dryer vents inspected and cleaned by a professional every year.
  • If you use your fireplace, make sure you clean after every use. Dispose of ashes correctly by placing them in a metal can at least ten feet from the house.
  • Keep anything that can burn at least three feet from any heat source like fireplaces, wood stoves, radiators, or space heaters
  • Plug only one heat-producing appliance (such as a space heater) into an electrical outlet at a time.
  • If portable generators are needed, keep them outside, away from windows and as far away as possible from your home. Make sure someone is home to supervise.
  • Install and test carbon monoxide alarms at least once a month.

These are simple but effective steps to take to safeguard your home against a fire this winter season.

Remember, SERVPRO of Baldwin County can clean fire, smoke, and soot damage to make it “Like it never even happened.” Give us a call at 251-928-9625.

Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned, Flu Season, & COVID-19

1/6/2021 (Permalink)

Flu season is here once again. This year is especially unique due to the spread of COVID-19. Many may wonder, what does this mean for you? Experts are recommending to start by getting your flu shot, and continue following CDC guidelines that have been in place since the beginning of the Coronavirus pandemic. Wash your hands regularly, use hand sanitizer frequently, wear a mask and practice social distancing whenever possible. Regular cleaning and disinfection of high touch surfaces is also recommended, especially for offices and businesses open to the public.  You can always count on SERVPRO of Baldwin County to be here every step of the way during this flu season. We have always been the experts in clean and our crews have undergone extensive IICRC training focusing on the removal of biohazard pathogens. Our stringent standards and adherence to all CDC and EPA guidelines means that you can have peace of mind knowing you are receiving the highest level of service.  When just “clean” won’t do, you need Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned.  Call us today at 251-928-9625.

Holiday Fire Facts

12/7/2020 (Permalink)

The holidays are one of the most exciting times of the year! From family gatherings to festive decorations, there's always plenty to look forward to. No matter how we decorate, we are most likely going to be using some sort of electricity. If we aren’t careful, it can be a huge hazard if not used or maintained properly. According to the National Fire Protection Association www.nfpa.org, Holiday fires caused an average of three deaths, 15 injuries, and $10 million in direct property damage annually. On average, one of every 52 reported home fires that began with a Christmas tree resulted in a death, compared to an average of one death per 135 total reported home fires. 

SERVPRO of Baldwin County wants to help keep you safe this Holiday season. With the help of the NPFA, here are some safety tips for you to keep in mind.

Electrical Fire Safety Tips

  • Make sure that there are smoke detectors installed on every floor of the building, inside each room and right outside of every sleeping area to ensure that the alarms can be heard even when sleeping.
  • Test smoke detectors monthly to make sure that they’re working properly and have working batteries.
  • Have your electrical system inspected by a certified professional to make sure that all of the electrical work meets the National Electric Code safety standards.
  • Look and listen for signs of electrical problems such as, flickering or dim lights, buzzing or sizzling sounds from electrical outlets, or insulation and circuit breakers that trip repeatedly. If any of these or any other electrical problems are found, contact a professional as soon as possible for the issue to be inspected.
  • Avoid overloading outlets with too many electronics. Consider having more outlets or circuits installed by a professional.
  • In homes with children, install tamper-resistant devices to keep children from getting electrical shocks or burns.
  • Create an evacuation plan that can be used in the event of a fire.

If an emergency occurs this Holiday season, SERVPRO of Baldwin County is here to help 24/7, even on Holidays! 251-928-9625

Tips for a Safe Thanksgiving!

11/25/2020 (Permalink)

Did you know there are more than three times as many home cooking fires on Thanksgiving than any other day of the year?

Our team at SERVPRO of Baldwin County wants to make sure you enjoy Thanksgiving with your loved ones, so here are a few tips to ensure your safety this holiday:

•Never leave food cooking on the stovetop unattended, especially when frying and sautéing with oil. Stay in your home while the turkey is cooking and check on it frequently.

•Use a timer to keep track of cooking times, most notably when simmering, baking, or roasting foods that require longer cook times. Check the stove or oven frequently.

•Consider putting timers in different rooms so you can hear them over music and party chatter.

•Keep things that can catch fire like oven mitts, wooden utensils, food wrappers, and towels well away (a minimum of three feet) from the cooking area.

•Push up shirt sleeves and avoid wearing billowy clothing that may come in contact with open flames or other heat sources. 

•Avoid cooking when drinking alcohol, using other substances, or if you’re sleepy.

•Make sure children stay at least three feet away from all cooking areas, hot food, and liquids to avoid burns.

Keep these tips in mind when frying a turkey:

•Keep outdoor fryers off decks, out of garages and a safe distance away from trees and other structures.

•Make sure the turkey is thawed and dry before cooking. Ice or water that mixes into the hot oil can cause flare-ups.

•Watch the weather. Never operate a fryer outdoors in the rain or snow.

•Place the fryer on a level surface, and avoid moving it once it's in use.

•Leave 2 feet between the tank and the burner when using a propane-powered fryer.

•Follow the manufacturer's instructions to avoid overfilling. Oil can ignite when it makes contact with the burner.

•Choose a smaller turkey for frying. A bird that's 8 to 10 pounds is best; pass on turkeys over 12 pounds.

•Never leave fryers unattended.

•Purchase a fryer with temperature controls, and watch the oil temperature carefully. Cooking oil that is heated beyond its smoke point can catch fire. If you notice the oil is smoking, turn the fryer off.

•Turn off the burner before lowering the turkey into the oil. Once the turkey is submerged, turn the burner on.

•Wear goggles to shield your eyes, use oven mitts to protect your hands and arms and keep an "ABC" or grease-rated fire extinguisher close by. Do not to use water or a garden hose on a fire related to Turkey Fryers.

•Skip the stuffing when frying turkey, and avoid water-based marinades.

•Keep children and pets away from the fryer at all times.

•Once finished, carefully remove the pot from the burner, place it on a level surface and cover to let the oil cool overnight before disposing.

•Opt for an oil-less fryer. This uses infrared heat, rather than oil, to cook the turkey.

If you do have an emergency this holiday season, SERVPRO of Baldwin County is available to help 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, even on holidays. Call us at 251-928-9625. Have a happy and safe Thanksgiving!

Turkey Fryer Safety Tips

11/25/2020 (Permalink)

Keep in mind the potential dangers of deep frying a turkey:

-Turkey fryers should be used outdoors, a safe distance away from buildings and any other flammable materials.

-Make sure the fryers are used on a flat surface to reduce accidental tipping.

-Make sure the turkey is completely thawed and dried. Water causes oil to spill over, leading to a fire or explosion.

-Turn the gas off before placing the turkey in the fryer.

-Never leave the fryer unattended.

-Never let children or pets near the fryer.

-Keep a fire extinguisher nearby. Never use water to extinguish a grease fire.

Fire Safety Tips for Fall

11/6/2020 (Permalink)

Did you know that fall carries the highest risk for house fires? According to the American Red Cross, statistically most house fires happen in the fall and winter months.

Luckily there are steps you can take to lower your risk of a fire starting in your home.

1. Check the batteries in your home’s smoke detectors.

Working smoke detectors help keep your home and family safe. Experts recommend having a smoke detector in every bedroom.

If you have issues remembering when you need to change your smoke detector batteries, a good rule of thumb is to switch them every spring and fall when you change your clocks.

2. Bonfire Safety

Do you enjoy bonfires with family and friends?

Bonfires are one of the most popular American fall activities. But if they aren’t properly attended, they can turn a fun night out into a disaster.

Supervising a bonfire safely really comes down to keeping an eye on the fire. Don’t leave a fire burning by itself in your yard. If you’re done for the night, be sure to put out your bonfire so it doesn’t cause any unintended damage.

3. Fireplace Safety 

Before you light your first fire this fall, have a professional check out your chimney and fireplace to be sure it’s safe.

You don’t want to light a fireplace if the chimney is clogged or damaged. Having a professional check the condition of your fireplace, and other heating units (like your furnace) can also help prevent fires caused by maintenance problems.

We’re Here if You Need Us

If an accident happens at your home this fall and you need help restoring fire or smoke damage, give SERVPRO of Baldwin County a call at 251-928-9625.

Halloween Fire Safety Tips

10/30/2020 (Permalink)

Keep your Halloween spooky and fun!

Halloween decorations are the first thing to ignite in over 1,000 reported home fires each year. Whether you are trick or treating, having a party, or staying inside, decorations can be a fire risk. It is important to be aware of your surroundings. By planning ahead, you can help make 2020 Halloween a fire-safe one. Taking simple fire safety precautions like keeping decorations far away from open flames and using battery-operated candles or glow-sticks in jack-o-lanterns can help ensure your holiday remains festive and fun. Here are five Halloween fire safety tips from the National Fire Protection Association:

  • Use a battery-operated candle or glow stick in jack-o-lanterns.
  • When choosing costumes, stay away from the long trailing fabric.
  • Teach young children to stay away from open flames, including jack-o-lanterns with candles in them.
  • Keep all decorations away from open flames, especially cornstalks, dried flowers, and crepe paper.
  • Provide young children with glow sticks or flashlights to carry with their costumes.
  • Remember to keep all exits clear of decorations so escape routes are not blocked. Also, make sure all smoke alarms are working properly.

We hope everyone has a fun and safe Halloween!

National Preparedness Month: Week 3

9/14/2020 (Permalink)

September: National Preparedness Month

Week #3 – September 13th-19th, Goal: Educate Yourself About Disasters and Emergencies

Different areas have different threats for natural disasters, along with non-natural disasters. For this week of National Preparedness Month, take the list of disasters you may experience, and visit www.ready.gov/be-informed to learn more about each one. Each of these emergencies are covered in depth through ready.com: household chemical emergencies, hurricanes, landslides & debris flow, nuclear power plants, pandemic, power outages, radiological dispersion device, severe weather, snowstorms & extreme cold, space weather, thunderstorms & lightning, tornadoes, tsunamis, volcanoes, wildfires, active shooter, attacks in public places, avalanches, bioterrorism, chemical emergencies, cybersecurity, drought, earthquakes, explosions, extreme heat, floods, hazardous materials incidents, and home fires.

There is also information about what you can do to recover from these disasters. Some of the subjects include how to get involved with the community, citizens corps, community emergency response team, talking to your neighborhood/neighbors about their plans, and lists of organizations active during disasters.  

Other Resources for Your Use:

Parents of Young Children www.ready.gov/kids

Business Owners www.ready.gov/business.

National Preparedness Month: Week 1 & 2

9/11/2020 (Permalink)

Week #1 – September 1st-5th, Goal: Make A Plan.

The goal of this week can be accomplished in 4 simple steps.

Step #1- Put a Plan Together

Different areas of the county are more at risk for different types of natural disasters. Your first step to put together a plan is to assess what disasters are the most heavy in your area, and make a list. Once you have a list, it will then help you with the rest of the steps.

With your list in mind, ask yourself these questions.  

•How will I receive emergency alerts and warnings?

•What is my shelter plan?

•What is my evacuation plan?

•What is my household communication plan?

•Do I need to update my emergency preparedness kit?

This will help you identify anything you may have forgotten, and help you find holes in your plan.

Step #2- Consider Specific Needs in Your Household

You can easily look up lists of items to have on hand in case of an emergency, but this step makes your supplies list specific to your family’s needs. Look at each member, and think of any daily items they may need that is not on the list. This can include the daily care of infants/small children, elderly family members, how each member communicates, pets, or anyone with specialized medical equipment or medicine. Having these items on hand is very important when disaster strikes, and you may not be able to easily obtain them.

Step #3- Fill Out a Family Emergency Plan

https://www.ready.gov/sites/default/files/2020-03/create-your-family-emergency-communication-plan.pdf

Above is the Family Emergency Plan that ready.gov has put out to use. Whether you choose to use this one or not, it is a great reference in what information to have!

Step #4- Practice Your Plan with Your Family/Household

Now that you have your plan started, practicing and running over this plan thoroughly will help you identify any other weaknesses. It may also help your family members feel safe and comfortable after discussing this hard topic, especially with small children. Making sure they feel fully prepared and safe is a great way to put their minds at ease!  

Week #2 – September 6th-12th, Goal: Build A Kit  

The goal of an emergency kit is to help your family survive without assistance for at least 3 days.

Basic Kit Items:

•Water (for each person)

•Food (for each person) Hand crank can opener

•Local maps

•Cell phone chargers & a backup, portable battery

•First aid kit

•Whistle

•Dust masks & cloth masks

•Battery operated radio and/or weather radio

•Flashlights

•Extra batteries

•Wipes

•Trash bags

•Wrench & pliers (for cutting off emergency lines)

•Plastic sheeting & duct tape

Additional items to consider including:

•Cash

•Sleeping bag or blanket for each person

•Complete change of clothing for each person (including shoes)

•Fire extinguisher

•Activities for any children

•Soap & hand sanitizer

•Matches (make sure to store in a waterproof container!)

•Personal hygiene products

•Disposable paper products

•Prescription & over the counter medication

•Contact lens solution (if applicable)

•Copies of important family documents, in waterproof container or saved electronically

•If applicable: formula, bottles, diapers, wipes & diaper rash cream

•If applicable: pet food & water

Maintaining Your Home Kit:

Now that your kit is stocked and ready to go, you will need to update it regularly. A good idea is to update the kit each time you take a look at your emergency plan you created last week. This ensures it is kept up to date, and all items are ready to be used at any time. This also gives you the chance to update any specific items. For example: if an infant no longer needs bottles, remove those items from the kit to save room. You may then need to add in some jars of baby food.

Other Kits:

Now that you are on a roll, consider making smaller kits for work, and to keep in your vehicle. These kits should be much smaller and are a lot easier to create.

Your Work Kit should prepare you to stay at work for at least 24 hours. Also include a comfortable pair of walking shoes in this kit, as you may not be wearing comfortable shoes at work when an emergency takes place.

Your Car Kit should always be in all cars you may have. This kit should include jumper cables, flares or reflective triangles, an ice scraper, extra cell phone charger (with car charger), blanket, map and cat litter or sand (to help you gain traction if stuck).

National Preparedness Month

9/9/2020 (Permalink)

Disaster Don't Wait, Make your Plan Today 2020 National Preparedness Month

September is National Preparedness Month, recognized to promote community disaster planning. Preparing yourself, your loved ones, and your property for a disaster is crucial, especially in the unpredictable year of 2020. Ready.gov offers weekly National Preparedness Month themes to help organize your preparations:

Week 1 (September 1st-5th): Make a Plan

Determine lines of communication, designated meeting places in case of separation, and responsibilities for each member of your household.  Depending on the needs of your family, you may require additional planning steps.

Week 2 (September 6th-12th): Build a Kit

Gather supplies for each member of your family.  You kit may include food, clean water, medications, pet foods, communication devices, and batteries.  Keep your kit as compact as possible, and in an easily accessible location, in case evacuation becomes necessary.

Week 3 (September 13th-19th): Prepare for Disaster

On the AL Gulf Coast, one of the most common disasters you may face is a hurricane.  To prepare for such an event, be sure to follow local and national news as it pertains to hurricane tracking, check your insurance coverage, and make sure your disaster preparedness kit is built. If a storm is forecasted to hit in your area, follow the direction of local officials concerning shelter and evacuation orders.

Week 4 (September 20th-26th): Teach Youth About Preparedness

Make sure children’s needs are included in your preparations.  Include their items in your disaster kit, talk with them about protocols and procedures in the event of a disaster situation, and answer any questions they may have.

As a leader in clean up and restoration, SERVPRO of Baldwin County is Here to Help in the event your property is damaged by a hurricane or other disaster situation. Our team is “Faster to Any Size Disaster!”  To learn more about our services, call 251-928-9625.

For more information about National Preparedness Month, visit https://www.ready.gov/september

Labor Day 2020 Safety Tips

9/2/2020 (Permalink)

Labor Day means cookouts, fireworks, and even campfires as people take advantage of one of the end of Summer.

It is definitely relaxing and fun to enjoy a backyard fire with friends and loved ones, but it’s important to make sure everyone involved stays safe.Here's a few easy fire protection and prevention tips:

Remember this list of four Labor Day fire safety tips:

  1. Keep a bucket of water close by. On the off chance that something floating out of your fire catches nearby items on fire, you don't want to have to run to get water to put it out.  With water right there, you can quickly and safely extinguish the issue.
  2. Don’t let barbecue grease accumulate. Built up grease and food on a grill grate has a high likelihood of igniting. Before, during, and after using your grill, clean the grate using a wire brush.
  3. Inspect the area around your BBQ and campfire.  Make sure to keep as many flammable items away from your grill or fire as possible.  Paper plates and napkins catching on fire are a leading cause of fire damage during Labor Day weekend.  This is especially important if you are grilling near your house or on a deck.
  4. Completely extinguish the fire when you are finished. Never leave a grill unattended after cooking, and never go to sleep without ensuring that it is fully out.  A breeze can send embers that are still hot into the air, and they could land on your roof or other parts of your home, leading to a fire.

If you happen to have any fire damage to your home or business, call SERVPRO of Baldwin County at 251-928-9625

20 Tips for a Safe Labor Day Weekend

9/2/2020 (Permalink)

2020 Labor Day weekend is here! Whether you are relaxing at the beach, hanging by the pool, or enjoying the outdoors, it's important to stay safe! Here are 20 safety tips from the American Red Cross.

DRIVING SAFETY

  1. Be well rested, alert, and use your seat belts. Pay attention to speed limits and follow the rules of the road. Clean your headlights for driving at night.
  2. Don’t drink and drive. Have a designated driver or call an Uber/Lyft.
  3. Pay attention to the road & avoid distractions such as cellphones.
  4. Use caution in work zones & look out for construction projects on the highways.
  5. Don't drive too close to the person in front of you.

HEAT SAFETY

  1. Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water, especially if drinking caffeine or alcohol.
  2. Avoid extreme temperatures.
  3. Wear loose, lightweight, light colored clothing. Beware the dark colors absorb the sun’s rays.
  4. Avoid strenuous exercise during the hottest part of the day, and make sure to take a break from the heat...especially if you plan on spending your weekend outdoors.
  5. Postpone outdoor games and activities if you feel overheated or dehydrated.

BEACH SAFETY

  1. If you plan to swim in the ocean, lake or river, be cautious that conditions are different than swimming in a pool. Wear a life jacket if needed.
  2. Only swim in designated swimming areas. Obey all instructions and orders from lifeguards and ask them about local conditions.
  3. Make sure to always swim with someone else. Don't push your limits, and make sure you have enough energy to swim back to shore.
  4. Never dive headfirst. There's no way of knowing how deep the water actually is. Walk carefully into open waters. Watch out for and avoid aquatic life. Water plants and animals can be dangerous.
  5. If you are caught in a rip current, try not to panic. Signal to those on shore that you need assistance. Swim parallel to the shore until you are out of the current. Once you are free, swim toward shore. If you can't swim to the shore, float or tread water until you are free of the rip current and then head toward shore.

BE SAFE IN THE GREAT OUTDOORS

  1. Take a First Aid/CPR course so that you will know what to do in case help is delayed. You’ll learn how to treat severe wounds, broken bones, bites and stings and more.
  2. Know your groups level of ability in the environment around you. Plan accordingly. Sprains and falls are some of the most common accidents travelers may face.
  3. Beware of dehydration. Make sure to bring enough water and stay hydrated.
  4. Share your travel plans and locations with a family member, neighbor or friend.
  5. Pack a First Aid Kit – be sure to include insect repellent, sunscreen and personal medications."

source: American Red Cross. link here: redcross.org

Salvaged Items | Mold Damage

8/31/2020 (Permalink)

Did you know Mold can grow on more than just your walls?

It can grow on a variety of items, from furniture to walls to wood and flooring. When it comes to mold cleaning, however, you may be surprised about the number of objects that can be salvaged when you know the steps for cleaning them properly.

1. Leather Goods

Leather bags, jackets, and other items may be salvageable if you remove them from the affected area quickly. Because mold tends to spread faster in areas with high humidity, you can perform mold remediation for these items by transferring them to a room that is cool and dry. Once the leather has dried, you can sponge the surface with diluted baby soap to wipe away visible mold. Suede goods may need to be treated by a mold cleanup and restoration company.

2. Clothing

While not all clothing can recover from mold damage, you may be able to salvage some items. An Esporta Machine, which is designed to clean cotton clothing affected by mold, smoke, and other substances, can be effective in removing mold. You may be able to soak some fabrics in diluted vinegar to remove the mold, but this depends on how fragile the fabric is. Your restoration experts may able to advise you about other mold cleaning processes.

3. Paintings

Paintings affected by mold require special treatment. You may want to remove any wooden framing, as mold is attracted by wood fibers. Store the painting flat, away from humidity and sunlight, before contacting a professional artwork restoration company. Avoid bagging or sealing it in any kind of tight container, as this may create humid conditions that could encourage further mold growth. 

What to do...

When you find mold growth on your belongings, you may not know where to begin with mold cleaning. Contacting SERVPRO of Baldwin County for removing your items from areas where mold is present. Our team can help you salvage irreplaceable items and proceed with the rest of the cleanup with confidence.

Water Damage? What to do!

8/31/2020 (Permalink)

When water damage occurs, do you know what to do and what not to do?

Water damage can happen at any point for anyone, home or business, resulting in damaged property. These do's are only for clean water and do not’s pertain to sewage water. Sewage water is treated differently since it causes different damage and requires a different cleanup process. With the right tools and pieces of equipment, our professionals can safely dry out your home or business and the contents within it. Here are some things to always keep in mind.

  • To minimize the damage, make sure to shut off the source of water and turn off the electricity. It is essential to remove as much excess water as possible by mopping and soaking up with towels. This is especially important for wood furniture. 
  • To ensure that more damage isn't sustained by the furniture make sure to try and move it, if safe to do so. 
  • Make sure to NOT enter a room with standing water since there could be a risk of electrical shock 
  • Make sure to disconnect all power first. 
  • It is recommended to NOT leave rugs and furniture upholstery wet against one another because the fabrics have the potential to bleed between each other. 
  • It is important to note that you should not be utilizing your household vacuum to try and suck up any water. 

If these tips are followed, then damage can be minimized and you will be better prepared for help to arrive. Remember to stay safe and get excess water cleaned up professionally to minimize the chance of mold growth. Our Team at SERVPRO of Baldwin County is ready to assist at a moment's notice with any of your water mitigation emergencies. Give our team a call at 251-928-9625

Unexpected Water Loss

8/17/2020 (Permalink)

Pipe leaks, washer overflows, sewer, back ups, pump failure, toilet problems, and natural floods can wreak water havoc to your home Alabama Gulf Coast/Baldwin County home. You may feel like you have lost all control of your home, and it can only get worse if you hire a company that rips and tears your walls, furniture, carpet, and other personal belongings out of its place. This process can leave you clutching your chest in agony as well as a hole in your wallet.

Water removal in Baldwin County is not an easy task. Homeowners often try to clean the water problems without consulting the experts, which can cause more damage and problems. There are a lot of components that are involved in water damage restoration. It's not something that a beginner should consider tackling. Hiring a water restoration company is a smart decision because they have all the tools that are needed to take out extra water to prevent further damage. Plus, a thorough cleaning and drying process would require an experienced water damage restoration service.

SERVPRO of Baldwin County has high-tech equipment such as the extractor to help remove water from carpets and other flooring material. Air movers enhance evaporation to reduce drying time. Dehumidifiers extract water vapor from the air. After removing all the water, we use deodorizer equipment such as thermal foggers to produce the fog that has tiny particles of deodorant solutions to neutralize any odor caused by the water damage. Afterward, these technicians perform a thorough walk-through with you to make sure that you are delighted with the service.

With SERVPRO of Baldwin County, you can expect reliable and excellent customer services and experts to get the job done. Call 251-928-9625

Pandemic Pipe Problems

8/17/2020 (Permalink)

COVID-19 has hit the Alabama Gulf Coast and, in many ways, changed the way we live. However, that does not mean that life or problems just stop. Even though you may be at home more, real life problems still happen! Water heaters can leak, as well as A/C units and water pipes.

If you have any issue, SERVPRO of Baldwin County wants you to know that we are still open, working, and taking on new jobs. Our highly trained and experienced staff is here to help you with whatever issues may arise. We are a locally owned company that seeks to put the communities we serve first, especially during this unfamiliar time. We are all in this together, and we want you to know that we are Here to Help.

Please do not hesitate to call SERVPRO of Baldwin County at 251-928-9625

Techniques to Restore your Baldwin County Home

8/17/2020 (Permalink)

Water Damage on Alabama Gulf Coast Could Cause Problems With Your Furnishings

One day everything could be fine at your Baldwin County residence, then you wake up the next day to find that your refrigerator's ice machine has malfunctioned and spilled water all over your house. When leaks go unnoticed for a long time, moisture can quickly spread and cause water damage inside your kitchen and other rooms next to it, like your living room or dining area. Once carpets get saturated, your furniture can get negatively affected.

Whenever we work towards restoring water damage inside your Baldwin County home, our SERVPRO team starts by testing for moisture and looking for visible issues. Before we start any restoration procedures, we test items in the affected room like your drywall and upholstered furniture. Once we determine exactly what got wet, we can then formulate the best plan to quickly remove moisture from your contents and building materials.

If our SERVPRO of Baldwin County technicians find that furniture like your couch or recliner chair got wet, we can take steps to extract and dry out the items to prevent problems from occurring. Moisture most often causes the following four problems with any of your upholstered furniture items such as your couch.

1.  Swelling

Most couches and other upholstered furniture are made up of wooden frames that can swell when they get wet. Once parts of the frame on your furniture swells joints can weaken, which can affect your furniture's structural integrity.

2.  Water Spotting

Some materials can get stained by water damage and show visible water spots. In some cases, we can remove these by wetting the entire piece of furniture.

3.  Color Bleeding

Dust covers on furniture can sometimes bleed colors when wet and cause discoloration on other parts of the furniture or your floor. Metal buttons can also rust and cause rust staining on fabrics.

4.  Mildew Growth

Since most furniture is made with organic substances like wood, mold and mildew can grow if the item is not dried out quickly.

Many of our techniques can help reduce problems that could ruin your furniture. If your couch ever gets wet after a water leak, call SERVPRO of Baldwin County 24/7 at 251-928-9625. Once we are finished, we will restore your home to the way it was before the leak occurred and make it seem, "Like it never even happened."

Smoke Characteristics

8/17/2020 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Restoration Process in Baldwin County Properties

Smoke is one of the predictable byproducts of fires in homes. However, most people are not aware of the different variations of smoke produced, and the implications they might have on a property. SERVPRO of Baldwin County helps cleanup damage from all types of smoke in Baldwin County properties.

Which colors does smoke commonly exhibit?

You can simplify the process of fire damage restoration in your Baldwin County home if you are observant enough to note the color of smoke emitted from your property as fire burns. The common color variations include:

  • Black smoke
  • White smoke
  • Grey smoke

Smoke contains different substances, including aerosols, particulate matter, and moisture. When smoke looks whitish, it is an indicator of a higher percentage of aerosols or water vapor in its composition. The outcome under such circumstances may involve a widespread accumulation of wet smoke residues on surfaces. Our SERVPRO of Baldwin County crew can help you deal with the challenging cleanup process using advanced approaches such as soda blasting or surface stripping.

How damaging is a fire burning with black smoke?

Dark smoke can indicate several things, including:

  • Incomplete combustion of materials fueling the fire
  • Burning of synthetic materials 
  • The fire being highly volatile

Various challenges can arise after you notice a fire burning with thick dark smoke. For instance, the extreme heat from the scorching fire can push residues deeper into surfaces, making it tougher to clean the area or remove odors. The fire might also leave thick layers of residues all over the property, burdening you with extract cleaning steps. 

Our SERVPRO of Baldwin County technicians prepare well to handle such cleaning situations with various resources, such as automated agitation equipment. We also have specially formulated cleaning products that help strip down residues from surfaces faster.

Smoke characteristics, including its color, connect with many aspects of the resulting damage. An experienced team from SERVPRO of Baldwin County can help you address the challenges the situations present. Call us at 251-928-9625. We're Faster To Any Size Disaster.

Commercial Carpet Cleaning

8/15/2020 (Permalink)

Let SERVPRO of Baldwin County help you with all your carpet cleaning needs. Here at SERVPRO of Baldwin County, we use more than 100 exclusive cleaning products and award winning training to get your carpet looking restored and rejuvenated. Below are some common misconceptions about having your carpets professionally cleaned.

  1. The only reason to have your carpets cleaned is to remove the dirt.
  • In fact the IICRC standards for carpet cleaning S100, the CRI carpet and Rug institute, and United States EPA all state that: CARPETS MUST BE CLEANED FIRST FOR HEALTH, AND THEN FOR APPERARANCE. Studies conducted by the EPA have proven that the indoor air quality of many buildings is more polluted than the outdoor air.
  • Carpets act like a huge filter that traps all sorts of pathogens, toxins, and bio pollutants. For example tobacco smoke is a common toxin found in soiled carpets. Tobacco smoke contains more than 4,000 different chemical compounds. Even if you, your family member or friends don’t smoke, the chemicals and so many others are picked up by your shoes, tracked into your house and deposited in your carpet.
  • Therefore in addition to removing dirt and soil, you may want to consider the health issues and indoor quality issues related to pollutions in your carpets. Having your carpets cleaned at least once a year will maintain a clean environment for you, your family, and friends.
  1. Having the right equipment is all a company needs to clean your carpets properly.
  • This is simply not true. Many companies have top of the line equipment but do not know how you use it. You probably know someone who bought the most high tech cell phone on the market and does not know how to us it properly. The same thing happens with carpet cleaning equipment.
  • At SERVPRO of Baldwin County, our equipment specialist go through extensive training with our production managers on how to properly use the equipment and the do’s and don’ts when cleaning carpets. They are also trained on more than 100 products so they know exactly what products to use on all type of carpet.

SERVPRO of Baldwin County is dedicated to excellence. We are proud of the products we sell and the service we give. We are committed to our customers and treat them with honesty and integrity. Let us help you keep you, your family, and friends’ safe. Call us today to make an appointment to have your carpets cleaned by the professionals at SERVPRO of Baldwin County at 251-928-9625.

Commercial Damage Levels

8/15/2020 (Permalink)

One of the areas SERVPRO of Baldwin County has the capability to handle is commercial damage.

There are so many factors that can contribute to commercial damage occurring such as fires due to unforeseen circumstances, facility usage which puts wear and tear on your property, down to the most basic water damage. No matter the source of the damage, this downtime can be costly both to your business and your customers.  When damage at your commercial property happens, how do you know to what level and extent? Below we have a grading system we use to determine the level of which your property is assessed and categorized to begin mitigation.  

Level 1

Small commercial loss typically involving 15,000 square feet or less of affected floor space. If the facility was entirely affected, examples of a small commercial loss may include but are not limited to, a stand-alone retail establishment, a small church, a daycare facility, a small shopping center, a small warehouse or manufacturing facility, or a stand-alone administrative building. A Level 1 loss can also be a small portion of a much larger structure.

Level 2

Midsize commercial loss typically involving 15,000 to 60,000 square feet of affected floor space. The building or buildings involved are usually multi-level or greatly divided spaces. If the facility was entirely affected, examples of a Level 2 loss may include but are not limited to, a small multi-family property, a midsize church or school, a small shopping center, a multi-tenant administration facility, or a midsize warehouse or manufacturing facility. A Level 2 loss can also be just a portion of a much larger structure.

Level 3

Large commercial loss typically involving more than 60,000 square feet of affected floor space. The building or buildings involved will likely be large multi-level structures. If the facility was entirely affected, examples of a Level 3 loss can include but are not limited to, a large church, hospital, school, or university; a large multi-family property; a mid- to high-rise retail or administration facility; a large industrial, manufacturing, or warehouse facility; or a large strip-style shopping center or shopping mall. This is the level at which it would be appropriate to refer to the project as a “large loss.” Once our team determines the level of loss, the property is further assessed, and a team of appropriate size is dispatched to get the job done quickly and efficiently. If you have damage at your Commercial property, call SERVPRO of Baldwin County at 251-928-9625

Flood Damage Recovery Surprises

8/14/2020 (Permalink)

Flooding in your Baldwin County/ AL Gulf Coast business is already enough of a crisis. Unfortunately, as professionals mitigate and remediate the harm, it is not uncommon for owners to confront snags in the process. If the flood waters unleash compounding factors during the onslaught and the recovery, you need a restoration partner who can adapt their response to any unexpected twists and turns when secondary damage occurs.

What Are Examples of Secondary Damage or Discovered Hazards?

Your commercial building might harbor hidden materials brought to light during flood damage. When structural components break, erode, or strip away protective coverings during the rush of water or attempts to restore the chaos, the process might need to come to a halt. If the following materials are discovered a change in the recovery plan is necessary:

  • Asbestos
  • Lead painted surfaces
  • A wide range of chemicals, stored or swept inside, now contaminating the flood water
  • Mold growth

How Can I Handle the Presence of Biohazards and Mold Discovered During the Flood Recovery Process?

When SERVPRO is your commercial flood damage recovery contractor in the Baldwin County/ AL Gulf Coast area, the unveiling of biohazards and mold triggers the inclusion of remediation phases for each challenge. Our team includes trained, licensed, and experienced managers and technicians who can jump in whenever needed to secure the scene and take care of the interruption. We commit to:

  • Containing the affected spaces and the hazardous substances
  • Collecting the harmful materials, residues, and contaminated fluids
  • Disposing of the mold and biohazardsas required under local regulations

Rely on SERVPRO of Baldwin County to recognize new issues mid-project and integrate their resolution into the overarching restoration plan. Call on us at 251-928-9625 for a full-spectrum of services to get you back in business fast after flood damage.

Do Wet Vacuums Remove Standing Water?

8/14/2020 (Permalink)

We have many extraction tools, including wet vacuums, to prepare the property for thorough drying efforts. 

Regarding extraction for your Baldwin County/ AL Gulf Coast home or condo after a water loss incident, there are many tools and pieces of equipment that could be beneficial to this effort. Standing water can be a common threat after substantial disasters impact your property, so fast response by competent restoration professionals makes a difference in how quickly the house gets dried and even the ability of our team to protect structural elements and contents.

Wet vacuums are among the most standard choices for water removal in your Baldwin County residence.These units are versatile and lightweight, making them easy to move from one portion of the house to another during the extraction phase. When water depths do not exceed two inches, wet vacuums remain the top choice to remove surface water and even trapped moisture in materials like carpeting and hardwood floors.

What Other Extraction Tools Can Professionals Use? 

As much of a place as wet vacuums have in the water removal needs of your damaged home or condo, other tools in our inventory also have a role in this vital mitigation effort. The choice in which extraction tools get used in specific situations falls to the inspection conducted by our project manager and crew chief before restoration begins. Often, the factors and play and choosing from the versatile array of options are the severity of the damage, the location of the surface water, and the specific materials affected. Some of the top machines for water removal include:

  • Electric Submersible Pumps
  • Trash Pumps
  • High-Pressure Pumps
  • Truck-Mount Extractors

Between water removal and the drying of your damaged property, you can count on the fast response of our SERVPRO of Baldwin County professionals. We have many tools and technologies that we can deploy quickly to make water losses “Like it never even happened.” Give us a call today at 251-928-9625

 

3 Facts Business Owners Need To Know

8/12/2020 (Permalink)

Your commercial building can be affected by flooding from several sources. Water damage can include warped flooring and moldy drywall, but one of the more immediate issues caused by flooding is the influx of contaminated water. If your business has recently been damaged by flooding, it can be helpful to understand how this type of water can cause long-term damage and what you can do to mitigate it. 

  1. It Can Contain Dangerous Chemicals 

Environmental experts often call contaminated water that stems from flooding Category 3. This means the water did not come from a sterile source and may contain a variety of hazardous components, including harsh sewer and lawn chemicals that entered the water during flooding. These chemicals can make the water dangerous to touch, so calling in a flood damage and cleanup service is the safest way to have it removed. 

  1. It May Make You Sick 

Category 3 water damage can be dangerous in more than one way. For example, standing black water can grow microbes that may cause a variety of health effects. Urine and feces may also be present, even if they are not immediately visible, so it is wise to avoid this type of water completely and wait for professional cleanup services to arrive. 

  1. Acting Quickly Can Be Essential 

Because contaminated water can become more dangerous the longer it sits, it is a good idea to call in a cleanup crew right away. This can be important even if you believe the worst of the damage has already been done. Having the water removed may reduce the chances of long-term issues with your building’s affected floors and walls and prevent mold growth, which can be difficult to treat once it takes hold. 

Cat 3 water damage can harm your  commercial building in several ways. However, when you know its dangers and how to combat it, you may be able to prevent the worst of the destruction.

If your commercial building has experienced a water emergency call SERVPRO of Baldwin County at 251-928-9625

Flood Waters in your business

8/12/2020 (Permalink)

For Homes, Businesses, Schools & More…

After the flood waters recede and the debris is cleaned up, most people will want to begin rebuilding as quickly as possible.  While it is understandable to try to get back into a home or business as quickly as possible to try to retain some normalcy, problems can occur when trying to rebuild too quickly.  Flood waters have likely submerged the wood causing it to absorb large amounts of water. Beginning the rebuild process too quickly can lead to mold growth, insect infestation, and rotten wood.

Flood waters are filthy.  They contain bacteria, viruses, waste particles, and all kinds of gross contaminants.  Materials that are more porous, like drywall and carpet, must be removed and replaced.

CAUTION!  Make sure you inspect for structural and electrical damage from outside to determine if it is safe to enter.  Electrical safety is extremely important in floods. Check for fire hazards and gas leaks. Use battery-powered lights.  Wear sturdy, rubber shoes, rubber gloves, and eye protection. If mold is present, wear a respirator with a HEPA filter.  

If you need assistance getting your home or business back together, call SERVPRO of Baldwin County at 251-928-9625

Natural Disaster and your Business

8/10/2020 (Permalink)

Natural disasters can be terrifying. Especially if they affect your home or business, and those that depend on you. Although it’s scary to think about, there are a wide variety of different catastrophes that could strike your business, including floods, hurricanes, tornado, fires, and more.  If one of these unfortunate events happens, you don’t want to find yourself unprepared! Discover the most important steps to take following a major disaster so you can recover quickly and safely.  

1.     Assess the Situation

As soon as the calamity has died down, check yourself and any family members to make sure no one is hurt. If you have any nearby neighbors, see if they are in need of any help. Turn off the gas and electricity in your home if it safe to do so, and avoid entering your home for a while, as there could be damage to your floors or ceilings that could cause them to collapse.

2.     Finding Food and Shelter

If your business no longer has running water, you can obtain it through emergency sources, such as rainwater, your hot water tank, your toilet reservoir, or ice cube trays. Shelters are usually assembled by the American Red Cross in emergency situations for those whose homes are too damaged to stay in; look for one of these if you feel your home or business is dangerous. The Federal Emergency Management Agency, as well as local churches and community services, are also good resources for any needs you might have in these dire situations.

3.     Be Cautious

Disasters always leave a trail of destruction behind; be wary of contaminated floodwaters, fallen power lines, or any criminals taking advantage of all the chaos. Don’t turn the gas back on in your home, as there could be a leak, and make sure your house is ventilated if you’re cooking over your fireplace.

4.     Recovering Important Information

One of the last steps of disaster rehabilitation and recovery is to salvage as many of the important documents from the wreckage, such as your insurance policies, birth certificates, driver’s license, deeds, wills, financial statements, and any other precious information. Although these procedures might be difficult, it will help you and your family recover from this crisis as quickly as possible.

Call SERVPRO of Baldwin County with all Your Disaster Rehabilitation Needs!

If a disaster has affected your home, call SERVPRO of Baldwin County for all your cleanup needs! Our disaster restoration services are available 24/7, 365 days per year; they include water and flood damage cleanup, mold remediation, odor control, reconstruction services, trauma cleanup, and fire and smoke damage cleanup. Don’t wait another moment if your home has been devastated! Call us today! 251-928-9625

Water damage can be very detrimental to your home or business

7/29/2020 (Permalink)

The longer you wait after having water damage the more damage you are causing to your home or business. When you have water damage the best thing to do is shut off the water source that is causing the damage. If the damage is coming from something you are unable to cut off, you may need to contact a plumber in your area. Once this is completed, you will want to call the professional here at SERVPRO® of Baldwin County. No matter how big or small, we will be able to help get it under control.Water damage can be difficult to spot but some signs you can look for in your home and business:

  • Water rings on your ceiling or walls
  • Soft or sagging on your ceiling or walls
  • Wet or soggy carpets
  • Warping in your wood flooring

The best thing to do is call an expert right away before the problem gets worse. Our highly trained technicians are waiting for your call. We have our specialized equipment ready to use to get to your emergency mitigated as soon as possible. Don’t wait until the problem gets worse, call our highly trained team at SERVPRO® of Baldwin County 251-928-9625.

How Professional Standards Strengthen Mold Cleanup

7/29/2020 (Permalink)

When you discover mold in your home in Baldwin County, AL, you want a mold remediation company that works to the highest professional standards. This ensures the job will be done right and your property and family will be protected. A certified mold technician understands the nature of this damaging fungus and how to remove mold colonies from your home. The Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification is an industry leader in promoting high standards for the cleaning industry. The organization publishes standards for professional mold remediation and for the assessment for suspected mold contaminated structures. These standards are mostly voluntary but they have been developed through a rigorous process to determine the best practices for mitigating mold.

Mold Certification

It is not mandatory for a cleaning company to be a certified mold franchise; however, many insurance companies prefer to work with a business that engages in certified mold remediation. The benefits of choosing a professional company include the following:

  • Highly-trained technicians
  • Fast, effective cleanup
  • Safe cleaning agents and disinfectants
  • Advanced equipment and techniques
  • Best practices

A highly-trained company provides continuous education to its employees, allowing technicians to stay current on the latest and most effective cleaning procedures. Positions such as an applied microbial remediation specialist, water damage restoration technician, and applied structural drying technician contribute to better mold containment.

Mold Cleanup

A certified mold company follows a proven process to clear your home of troublesome mold colonies. Technicians begin with an inspection and assessment of the property. They work fast because a delay allows mold to spread throughout a home, especially into areas that have high moisture content due to a water leak or roofing problem. The steps of mold containment, air filtration and the removal of mold and mold-infested materials quickly follow. The final stages of the process include the cleaning of contents and belongings and restoration of your home.

Call SERVPRO of Baldwin County at 251-928-9625

Fire Pit Tips

7/6/2020 (Permalink)

Here on the AL Gulf Coast, it's common to hang out by the fire pit! Here are some tips to keep you and your family safe this Summer.

Backyard Fire Pit Safety Tips:

Whether you prefer a built-in or portable fire pit, choose one that is not too large for the area. The pit should be a minimum of 10 feet away from any structures or combustible materials as well as away from trees, fences, sheds, power lines, and telephone wires.

Make sure that the seating area is large enough and properly placed for comfort and ventilation.

Check wind direction before lighting a fire.

Don’t use flammable fluids (gasoline, lighter fluid, etc.) to light or relight fires.

To start the fire, use a lighter to ignite crumpled pieces of paper covered with small sticks. Then, add larger sticks and a log or two to keep it burning. 

Burn only dry material. Damp material will create excess smoke. 

Don’t wear flammable clothing (like nylon) or any loose-fitting clothing.

Never leave the fire unattended, and keep pets and children far away from the fire as they will be attracted to it.

Keep a fire extinguisher, garden hose, or bucket of water nearby.

As the fire dies down, use a shovel and spread out the ashes to allow them to cool down. Then slowly pour water over those ashes and watch them closely to be sure that no burning embers remain or reignite. Put the cooled ashes in a specially designated ash storage metal can. 

Steps To Take After Your Retail Store Floods

6/6/2020 (Permalink)

If your retail business floods, you must act as quickly as possible to salvage what you can and minimize the ongoing destruction that will come from standing water and saturation. If this happens you may feel like there is so much to take care of you don’t know where to start. Here are some important first steps to take after your retail store floods.

  • Safety first, of course. It’s important to move quickly, but it’s more important to protect yourself while you assess the damage. There are many dangers that you might encounter when returning to your flooded property, such as: 
    • infectious and diarrheal diseases – floodwater can contain some really unhealthy stuff
    • fuels, solvents and other industrial chemicals in floodwater
    • drowning or being wounded by submerged objects are possible hazards in a flooded basement or storage area, as well as in moving or standing water
    • electrical hazards – watch for downed power lines or underground electrical service exposed by erosion. Do not enter your flooded building if the electrical power is on or if you can see obvious structural damage
  • Assess the damage. Walk the perimeter of the property first, taking pictures and/or shooting some video footage to document what you find.
    •  Look for erosion that has left walls unstable or exposed utilities like underground electrical service or gas, sewer, or freshwater supply lines. 
    • If electrical or gas lines are exposed, call an electrician or your power company. These are situations that are potentially deadly. Get professional help before entering the building.
  • Remove all water and dry everything as quickly as possible. If your retail store has suffered significant flooding, professional help will probably be best, and you will want to choose a company that knows mold. A mold colony can become established in 24 hours after a flooding event, and that will be a disaster for your business, affecting your fixtures and product, and therefore your livelihood.

Our SERVPRO of Baldwin County team is here to help you if you suffer a flooding event. We are mold remediation experts, too!

The Importance of Containment

6/6/2020 (Permalink)

At SERVPRO of Baldwin County, building a containment is a critical part of our restoration, remediation, and abatement projects. These barriers, often made with poly-sheeting held in place by tape, are used for a range of jobs. This may include the abatement of mold, lead, and asbestos, the clean-up of damage caused by fire, smoke, or water, or to keep contaminants and even crime scenes contained. Containment systems are also useful in reconstruction projects, particularly where stone or wood cutting occurs and particles such as sawdust are released into the air.

Building an airtight containment is paramount to protecting interiors during restoration projects and minimizing the risk of contact with hazardous materials during abatement. Containments serve to:

  • Prevent potentially hazardous substances such as mold spores, asbestos, lead-based paint, and silica dust from spreading throughout the entire structure. These substances are very small and can easily hitch a ride on normal air currents found in most buildings.
  • Address concerns for health and safety, especially where airborne hazardous materials are present. If not contained properly, these materials can cause health complications and affect the well-being of nearby tenants, workers, and others in the surrounding area.
  • Function as a barrier to keep dust and other particles confined within a work space, prevent further property damage, and make clean-up easier. Without proper containment, the cost of the loss can increase dramatically.

Containing the site remains not only a priority, but a necessity. A safer work site benefits all parties, and mold testing is more likely to pass the first time, reducing the cost of re-cleaning and re-testing. When you call SERVPRO of Baldwin County, you can rely on us to construct a proper containment and restore your home or business back to new.

Hurricane Ready Kit

6/3/2020 (Permalink)

2020 Hurricane Season is here and we want to help you prepare NOW! After an emergency, you may need to survive on your own for several days. Being prepared means having your own food, water and other supplies to last for at least 72 hours. A disaster supplies kit is a collection of basic items your household may need in the event of an emergency.

Basic Disaster Supplies Kit

To assemble your kit store items in airtight plastic bags and put your entire disaster supplies kit in one or two easy-to-carry containers such as plastic bins or a duffel bag.

A basic emergency supply kit could include the following recommended items:

•Water (one gallon per person per day for at least three days, for drinking and sanitation)

•Food (at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food)

•Battery-powered or hand crank radio and a NOAA Weather Radio with tone alert

•Flashlight

•First aid kit

•Extra batteries

•Whistle (to signal for help)

•Dust mask (to help filter contaminated air)

•Plastic sheeting and duct tape (to shelter in place)

•Moist towelettes, garbage bags and plastic ties (for personal sanitation)

•Wrench or pliers (to turn off utilities)

•Manual can opener (for food)

•Local maps

•Cell phone with chargers and a backup battery

Source: https://www.ready.gov/kit

Fire Restoration Process

6/1/2020 (Permalink)

When it comes to fire damage, preparation is the key.

The first 48 hours after a fire often can be the difference between "restoring" vs. "replacing" your property and/or personal items. SERVPRO of Baldwin County provides timely response with restoration services ranging from fire, smoke, and soot removal, to content claims inventory and document restoration.

If you have experienced fire damage in your home or business, here is what to expect from us:

One Hour: Within one hour from notice of loss, a priority responder will contact you.

Four Hours: Within four hours of loss notification, our certified technicians will be onsite to assess the damage.

Eight Hours: Within eight hours of on-site arrival, certified technicians will be working neatly and efficiently to clean, restore, and deodorization. Pre-cleaning for restoration, to prevent any further damage from soot and smoke.

Detailed Explanation: A trained and uniformed technician will walk you through the job process step-by-step, explaining what to expect and the anticipated outcome. We then use state-of-the-art restoration techniques to ensure your home or business is back to normal in an appropriate timeframe.

Final Walk-through: After the work has been completed, a final walk-through will be conducted with you to help ensure your satisfaction.

Candle Safety at Home

6/1/2020 (Permalink)

Candle use is often the cause of many preventable home fires. It is estimated that candles cause more than 15,000 home fires every year, many of which result in injury or even death. More than half of these fires start because the candles are too close to combustible materials, which is something that is easily preventable.

Here are a few tips that can help you practice candle safety at home:

  • Burning candles should never be left unattended, and be sure to keep candles away from anything flammable.
  • If your candle is in a candle holder, it should be sturdy enough to avoid being easily knocked over. Candles should be placed where children and pets can’t reach them.
  • Candle wicks should be trimmed to ¼ inch each time before burning. Long wicks can cause uneven burning and dripping. Keep the pool of wax in the candle clear of debris such as wick trimmings. 
  • Read and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for candle use. Most candles should be burned for only a couple of hours at a time.
  • Extinguish candles with a candle snuffer rather than blowing them out, as hot wax can splatter.

Flameless candles are a safe alternative to lit candles and produce a similar soft, glowing effect. Lit candles are not recommended for use during power outages, so use battery-powered flashlights, lanterns and even flameless candles instead.

Finally, any talk of candle safety is incomplete without a reminder to check all smoke alarms in your home. Working smoke alarms in your home will greatly increase your chances of surviving a home fire, so check them every month to ensure they are working properly.

Here at SERVPRO of Baldwin County, we care about your safety. Call us if you experience fire damage, water damage, or issues from a mold infestation. 251-928-9625

Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned Standard Description of Services

5/27/2020 (Permalink)

Description of Services 

Certified: SERVPRO® Cleaned means professionally trained SERVPRO of Baldwin County employees perform requested cleaning, sanitizing and disinfection services to commercial properties. Certified: SERVPRO® Cleaned program ranges from standard to enhanced services and are intended to limit the survival and spread of emerging viral pathogens. 

Here is a general description of standard and enhanced services. It is up to the SERVPRO® of Baldwin County representative and the property owner or owner representative to determine which service is best suited for the specific situation. 

Standard Services 

Standard services focus on cleaning and disinfectant application to frequently contacted touch points. These touch points may include: 

• Door knobs, pulls, and locks, as well as 1 square foot around the knob, pull, or door jambs 

• Push doors 

• Stair handrails, elevator car and controls 

• Light switches, switch covers, and accessible outlet covers 

• Countertops, tabletops, vanity tops, and desktops while taking measures to control overspray and limit potential damage of other items (e.g. paper products, electronic devices, personal property). Disinfection of accessible surfaces without moving contents. 

• Chair arms, backs, and height/swivel controls. 

• Faucets, sinks, soap dispenser, towel dispenser, dryer, water fountains, napkin dispenser 

• Cabinet door and drawer exterior, door and drawer pulls/knobs 

• Toilets, urinals, bathroom stalls around locks and handrails, handrails, bathroom fixtures (e.g., toilet paper dispenser and paper towel dispenser), diaper changing stations, fitting room stalls around locks and handrails 

• Telephones, computer equipment, shared office equipment, sales registers, point-of-sale equipment 

• Exterior of shelves, racking, displays, bookcases, file cabinets, lockers, or other fixtures; disinfection of accessible surfaces without moving contents 

Beyond these touch points, there may be additional frequently contacted touchpoints that may need to be cleaned and/or have disinfectant applied. Additional touch points may include operational equipment such as kitchen, fitness, manufacturing, or laundry equipment. SERVPRO of Baldwin County will consult with the property owner/manager to determine if these items are present and mutually agree on how they will be handled. 

The following exclusions would apply unless an agreement is made prior to beginning services. SERVPRO of Baldwin County will not clean items or surfaces that are not frequently contacted touch points. We will not clean inventory or retail merchandise. We will not be providing cleaning services to the following: Food-related items such as condiments, kitchen food boxes, kitchen food bags, kitchen food containers, beverage or anything that will be consumed by the public. 

Interested in our program? Call us today 251-928-9625

Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned Enhanced Services

5/27/2020 (Permalink)

Enhanced Services 

Enhanced services build upon standard services by adding cleaning and disinfectant application to less frequently contacted touchpoints. This includes all the common touchpoints that would be treated in standard services with the addition of touch points that may include non-porous surfaces such as: 

• Front, sides, and backs of desks, counters, tables, and vanities (if accessible) 

• Hard, non-porous contents on tables, desks, or shelves 

• Wall hangings 

• Windows/mirrors under 8 feet from floor 

• Window/door trim 

• Bathroom stall walls/doors 

• Upper/lower cabinet exteriors 

• File cabinet exterior 

• Baseboards and the bottom 8 feet of wall surfaces 

• Hard surface floors 

Enhanced services could also include the cleaning and disinfectant application of porous surfaces such as:

• Carpet 

• Rugs 

• Upholstery 

• Cubicle walls 

Cleaning of these porous materials will be limited to HEPA vacuuming or wet cleaning based on level of visible soils, type of fiber, and condition and should be evaluated on an as needed basis. 

The following exclusions would apply unless an agreement is made prior to beginning services. SERVPRO of Baldwin County will not clean ceilings or ceiling-mounted fixtures as part of enhanced cleaning services. We will not be responsible for cleaning inventory or retail merchandise. We will not be providing cleaning and disinfecting services inside of cabinets, filing cabinets, desk drawers, refrigerators, ranges, microwaves, lockers or electronic items. We will not be providing cleaning services to the following: Food-related items such as condiments, kitchen food boxes, kitchen food bags, kitchen food containers, beverage or anything that will be consumed by the public. 

Interested? Call us today 251-928-9625

Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned

5/20/2020 (Permalink)

Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned shield Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned shield

Ushering in a new standard of clean

As America gets back to business, we all have a new sense of what it means to be clean. In fact, 89% of consumers are uneasy about going back to brick-and-mortar locations*. At SERVPRO of Baldwin County, we’re dedicated to inspiring confidence in communities across the country as we find our way to a new normal. And we’re doing just that with Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned.

Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned, our new defensive pathogen cleaning program, goes way beyond standard janitorial cleaning practices. This is proactive viral pathogen cleaning. With over 50 years of experience in biochemical spill remediation and decontamination, you can trust SERVPRO of Baldwin County Professionals to bring a higher standard of clean to the places we gather.

So how does it work? It’s grounded in our unique 3 C’s:

• Consult: Not all businesses are the same, so we’ll tailor a bespoke cleaning program based on the unique needs of each facility.

• Clean: Based on the agreed plan, an expert deep clean is initiated using our proprietary EPA-Approved Hospital-Grade cleaning solutions and always adhering to the leading level of cleaning and decontamination standards set by the CDC.

• Certify: You’ll know a business is Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned by the shield posted on their front window. Along with digital emblems and other collateral, this beacon represents their commitment to the comfort and security of their employees, customers and community.

So when you see the Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned shield, you can walk in with confidence. Because you’ll know the #1 choice in clean up and restoration was there.

Are you interested in our Commercial Services, or are you a consumer who wants to learn more?

Call us today! 251-928-9625

Protect your business from a storm

5/11/2020 (Permalink)

Have you taken steps to protect your business and employees on the Alabama Gulf Coast?

When we experience a thunderstorm in Baldwin County, it can potentially cause extensive damage to your business. Power outages downed tree limbs, and flooding from rainstorms are all possibilities. SERVPRO of Baldwin County has a few preventative steps you can take to ensure you are able to protect your business when these storms happen.

1. Keep Your Lightning Rod Maintained

A lightning rod is a metal rod mounted on a structure and intended to protect the structure from a lightning strike. If lightning hits the structure, it will preferentially strike the rod and be conducted to ground through a wire, instead of passing through the structure, where it could start a fire or cause electrocution. If your business is located in a tall building that may attract lightning, then maintaining the lightning rod can be essential. Have the rod checked annually for damage and ask your certification professionals to verify that it is up to code. If your business is located in an area where lightning is common, it is wise to have the unit cleaned and inspected at least twice a year.  

2. Maintain All Trees on the Property  High winds can turn tree limbs into projectiles that may shatter your building’s windows and cause serious injury to your customers or employees. Make sure you are maintaining your landscaping so dead branches do not detach and strike people entering your business below. Trimming trees away from your building’s power lines can protect its power source during a thunderstorm 

3. Have a Flood Plan in Place  Having a flood plan in place can possibly prevent flooding in your business, especially in the case of mitigation services. Contacting SERVPRO of Baldwin County before the wet season can be a wise choice because if your building should experience flooding, our team can have help on hand right away.

Wildfires Along the Gulf Coast

5/8/2020 (Permalink)

Mobile and Baldwin County are currently under a fire advisory, as fires spread under dry conditions along the Gulf Coast.

Everything around us is dry, and the conditions are ripe for a wildfire at almost any time. On Wednesday, a backyard fire near Magnolia Springs, is only one example of many that have kept local firefighters busy. "When you consider a wind combined with low relative humidity and heat during the day, that’s really the perfect recipe for a fire to get out of control," said Foley Fire Chief Joey Darby.

Foley's fire chief says the current red flag fire warning by the National Weather Service is a real threat. Currently 12 counties in Alabama are also part of a state environmental burn ban that's already in place to control air quality.

"A lot of our public doesn’t really understand that, but it prevents them from having open debris fires on their property. Now there are some exemptions when you consider agricultural practices," said Darby.

Since April 1st, Foley has had 20 "open burn" fire calls, and nearly every city across Baldwin County has been busy, too. 

"When it’s a beautiful day that’s when people feel the need to burn things. They think it’s a great day to be out doing yard work and typically they try to burn," said Darby.

The State Forestry Commission also has a warning, from the backyard fire to the agricultural fire.

Now may not be the right time to light that match.

"If it gets away, you are responsible for it. You are responsible for your neighbor’s property if you burn it up and for the suppression costs of it, whether it’s the fire department or whoever," said Benjamin Elmore with the Alabama Forestry Commission.

The current air quality environmental burn ban imposed by ADEM started May 1st and will be in place for the next six months.

Source: Gulf Coast Wildfires

Fire damage can be devastating over a widespread area, so you’ll need the company you can trust to rise to the occasion. Wildfires are likely to cause fire and smoke destruction, as well as secondary water and soot damage. SERVPRO of Baldwin County is already in place and ready to respond. We have a highly trained Disaster Recovery Team, and are ready 24/7. No disaster is too large. Regardless of the extent of the damage, SERVPRO of Baldwin County Professionals can handle any size disaster. During catastrophic events like the wildfires, our Disaster Recovery Team will respond quickly with additional resources.

Have Fire, Smoke or Soot Damage?

Call Us Today 251-928-9625

Tips for Protecting Yourself from Mold During Cleanup

4/29/2020 (Permalink)

Tips for Protecting Yourself from Mold During Cleanup

During the process of mold remediation, it’s important to protect yourself, and your staff, with the proper safety gear and equipment. If you’re concerned about conducting the procedure yourself, SERVPRO of Baldwin County mold remediation specialist may be able to help. The recommendations for a safe cleanup remain the same for everyone involved.

1. Wear Protective Clothing

When cleaning up mold growth it’s important to wear protective clothing. A coverall suit is recommended in most cases, but long sleeves tucked into gloves, and long pants may work just as well. Protective gear is an important tool for keeping any cleaning agents and mold spores off of your skin. If wearing everyday clothing instead of a protective suit, it’s important to launder them in hot water immediately after use.

2. Change Before Entering an Uncontaminated Area

Another way to protect your business is to change out of your safety gear before entering uncontaminated areas. This can help prevent the spread of mold spores into areas where mold growth has not yet occurred. The necessity of changing gear is why many professional use covers for their hair and shoes, as well as wear protective over-suits.

3. Wear a Mask and Goggles

The use of a respirator mask and protective goggles are also recommended. These can help prevent the inhalation of any cleaning fumes, and keep dust or debris common to clean up out of your eyes. The mask and goggles should fit snugly without pinching.

Using the proper equipment when cleaning up mold can help protect everyone, including the cleanup crew and the employees who regularly work in the building. Proper gear can not only help prevent the spread of mold to uncontaminated areas but allow for cleaning solutions to be used safely. If you’re unsure about the proper procedure or don’t want to conduct the cleanup yourself, a professional may be able to help.

Fire Tips for Kids

4/29/2020 (Permalink)

According to the American Burn Association, children are the most susceptible to burn injuries. 73% of all burn injuries happen in the home. At some point in time, children are going to be curious about fire, but it can be dangerous and costly.

Here are some tips to follow to keep your family safe according to the National Protection Association:

  • Be sure to keep all matches and lighters out of the reach of children, preferably somewhere up high or in a locked cabinet.
  • Closely supervise your children, making sure that they are away from any fire sources, including lit candles, cigarettes, fire pits, and stoves.
  • Take advantage of any opportunity to teach your children about fire safety.
  • Explain that fires are something to be taken seriously as they move very fast and can hurt you with contact.
  • Teach young children to not touch matches or lighters, and to notify an adult immediately if found.
  • Establish a clear set of rules and consequences about unsupervised and unapproved uses of fire.
  • Remember, children are always watching. Make sure you set a good example by handling fire in a safe manner.
  • Show your children appreciation for displaying respect and age-appropriate responsibility when it comes to fire.

If your children happen to burn themselves, cool the burn by running it under cold water for 10 to 15 minutes.

If it is a more serious burn, call 911.

Standing Water

4/27/2020 (Permalink)

When floodwater intrudes into your home or commercial business it can cause "standing water", which can be dangerous. Here are some precautions you can take if dealing with standing water.

Standing Water are not natural swimming pools

  • Sewage, debris, and other unpleasant things can be in the standing water leftovers
  • Swimming, wading, or rafting can make you sick
  • Don’t drink the water
  • Water conducts electricity. Underground power lines can give you a dangerous shock

Standing Water vs. Animals:

  • Snakes and other animals may get into your building. Wear work boots and heavy gloves when you clean up
  • Some animals might find your office a cozy place to live
  • If tap water is unsafe to drink, it is unsafe for your pets

If you find yourself dealing with standing water of any kind, SERVPRO of Baldwin County is here to make it “Like it never even happened."

Signs of Water Damage

4/27/2020 (Permalink)

Water damage can be very detrimental to your home or business

The longer you wait after having water damage the more damage you are causing to your home or business. When you have water damage the best thing to do is shut off the water source that is causing the damage. If the damage is coming from something you are unable to cut off, you may need to contact a plumber in your area. Once this is completed, you will want to call the professional here at SERVPRO® of Baldwin County. No matter how big or small, we will be able to help get it under control.Water damage can be difficult to spot but some signs you can look for in your home and business:

  • Water rings on your ceiling or walls
  • Soft or sagging on your ceiling or walls
  • Wet or soggy carpets
  • Warping in your wood flooring

The best thing to do is call an expert right away before the problem gets worse. Our highly trained technicians are waiting for your call. We have our specialized equipment ready to use to get to your emergency mitigated as soon as possible. Don’t wait until the problem gets worse, call our highly trained team at SERVPRO® of Baldwin County 251-928-9625

Protect your Gulf Coast Business from Storm Damage

4/25/2020 (Permalink)

As Baldwin County has been experiencing powerful storms, and 2020 Hurricane Season is nearing, we thought it’d be a good time to go over how to protect your property from water damage. 

A flooded building can wreak havoc on your business operations and day to day life. If you are concerned about flood water, it is important to do what you can now so that your business property is better protected later. Here's how you can protect your property through this storm season.

Preparing Your Building

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

" Install waterproof shields over windows and doors where possible.

" Strengthen walls to stand against the pressure of flood water or flood debris.

" Seal all areas where utilities enter the building.

" Anchor the building if necessary.

Protecting the Lower Levels

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

Taking Other Safety Measures

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

Preparing for Restoration

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

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

2020 Hurricane Season

4/24/2020 (Permalink)

How to Prepare for a Hurricane.

This 2020 Hurricane season is estimated to be more active than previous years. It's important to know what to do before it hits to help prevent damage or loss to your property.

List of Supplies

  1. An Emergency Readiness Plan for your family
  2. 3 days worth of water
  3. 3 days of non perishable food for each person or pet
  4. First Aid Kit
  5. Battery Powered Radio or radio alert 
  6. Portable Power bank to charge cell phones
  7. Full Tank of Gas in car
  8. Batteries
  9. Whistle to Signal for Help

How to Prepare Your Home

  • Cover your windows with storm shutter or plywood, or use tape the glass so the broken shards stay together
  • Learn if you are in an area that floods, and how to properly sand bag your home
  • Clean out your rain gutters

If you’ve already experienced flooding or storm damage, don’t hesitate to reach out to SERVPRO of Baldwin County 251-928-9625

Flood Damage Restoration For Your Baldwin County Home

4/20/2020 (Permalink)

As many people on the Alabama Gulf Coast know, flooding can easily disrupt a person’s everyday life and leave your home destroyed. If not appropriately resolved, water often causes severe damage that gets worse over time. Having the ability to restore water-damaged buildings is an invaluable service to both you and your insurance company. 

Restoring water-damaged structures requires the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) training, years of experience, and specialized equipment normally unavailable to your everyday homeowner. 

SERVPRO of Baldwin County can help you understand the technical aspects of your flood damage restoration and provide you with the communication necessary to make the situation far less stressful. 

At SERVPRO of Baldwin County, we use the IICRC’s Standard and Reference Guide for Professional Water Damage Restoration (S500). It presents us with a standard to adhere to when addressing flood damage in your home, with five fundamental principles.

• We provide health and safety procedures for workers and occupants.

• Document all conditions and work procedures.

• Perform damage mitigation to limit losses.

• Implement fast, efficient drying methods.

• Offer both cleaning and repair services.

SERVPRO of Baldwin County technicians provide customers with a quick response, 24-hours a day, 7-days a week, to prevent further damage. We address many dangers that exist concerning flood damage restoration that can injure you or even take your life. Our team looks for slip, trip, and fall hazards, chemical and environmental hazards, including hazardous materials, structural, and electrical.

Regardless of how secure you think you are, safety should always be your primary concern when dealing with flood damage restoration in your home. Water itself can be dangerous – often containing biohazards that you cannot recognize without special equipment. Always think about how long water remains in your home and the possibility of mold contamination. 

If you need assistance, call SERVPRO of Baldwin County. We can help you with all types of flood damage, cleaning, and restoration services throughout the Alabama Gulf Coast area. We’re Faster to Any Size Disaster– call today 251-928-9625

Are You "Hurricane Ready"?

4/20/2020 (Permalink)

As 2020 Hurricane Season approaches, it is important to be prepared beforehand. Living on the Alabama Gulf Coast can be scary during hurricane season, as we experience several storms during these months. Hurricanes are massive storm systems that form over ocean water and often move toward land. Hurricanes include high winds, heavy rainfall, storm surge, coastal and inland flooding, rip currents and tornadoes all of which can destroy homes, buildings, and roads. It is important to stay ready so you do not find yourself scrambling to brace for the impact. There is always the potential looming that our area could be hit by a hurricane. Here are a few things to know ahead of a hurricane if one was to head our direction. 

Know the Difference

•Flood/Flash Flood Watch—Flooding or flash flooding is possible in your area.

•Flood/Flash Flood Warning—Flooding or flash flooding is already occurring or will occur soon in your area. 

How to Prepare

•Listen to area radio and television stations and a NOAA Weather Radio for possible flood warnings and reports of flooding in progress or other critical information from the National Weather Service (NWS).

•Be prepared to evacuate at a moment’s notice.

•When a flood or flash flood warning is issued for your area, head for higher ground and stay there.

•Because standard homeowners insurance doesn’t cover flooding, it’s important to have protection from the floods associated with hurricanes, tropical storms, heavy rains and other conditions that impact the U.S. For more information on flood insurance, please visit the National Flood Insurance Program Web site at www.FloodSmart.gov.

Different Types of Storm Damage

3/25/2020 (Permalink)

There are several types of storm damage including wind, flooding, or even fire. Flooding can cause extensive amounts of damage to your home, and lightning can create fires while high winds can cause many issues to the structure of your home.

Wind
The damage which results from extremely high winds is quite easy to see most of the time. Nowadays, roof shingles are designed better than their predecessors regarding their resistance to wind and the ever-increasing knowledge and standards. There is many times little can be done to prevent damage by wind in conditions that are very extreme. Roofs that are wind-damaged usually appear to be affected only in certain spots. The edges or perimeter of the room are affected by high winds easily, since the edge of a roof is quite prone to lifting.

Hail
Round dings in metal are clear signs of hail damage. Determining whether your roof has suffered damage from a hail storm, however, could be a bit more challenging. After hail hits the roof, it knocks off the protective granules where the hail has hit, and these areas of damage are the sources of leaks in the roof in the future if it is not fixed within a few years’ time.

Snow
Snow causes most of its damage from the weight of it, which immensely increases when ice, rain and sleet are added to it. On an average-sized roof, two feet of snow can weigh the equivalent of thirty-eight thousand pounds or nineteen tons. The obvious sign many times that a roof is about to fail is if it is sagging.

Ice
The functionality of a lot of gutter and roof systems are affected by the temperatures that fluctuate, making the snow melt then refreeze on the edge of the roof. This makes a dam which the water cannot pass through, meaning that as more snow melts off the roof and trickles down, it gets blocked by an ice dam and makes a puddle. Since roofs were not made to handle standing water, especially as the water line and growing puddle move up the roof, the water can seep through small openings in the roof into your home or attic.

Rain and Flood Damage
Water running out of a typical water drainage basin due to overflowing from a storm can wreak havoc on your property. Streams, creeks, rivers or lakes which overflow, flash floods, a storm surge or a tsunami are all examples of flood damage that are possible.

Flooding can cause damage to your property including your foundation and drywall damage. Most of the time the drywall will need to be removed and replaced. The flooding can also cause mold to grow on the property due to standing or hidden water, such as inside the walls. This should be taken care of as soon as possible, usually by a professional storm damage remediation company, as mold can cause a serious health risk to you and your family.

Call an Expert
At the first sign of damage contact a professional storm damage restoration company. We use specialized equipment and technology to tackle any storm damage to your property. We will be able to restore your property back to normal.

Contact SERVPRO of Baldwin County to restore your commercial or residential storm damage "Like it never even happened."

Dehumidifying your home

3/25/2020 (Permalink)

When you live on the Eastern Shore, humidity is inevitable. The warm weather we enjoy so much is saturated by a significant amount of water, which generates the excessive moisture around you. While many fear what the humidity means for their hair or their skin, have you thought about what it means for your home?

In humid climates, homes run serious risk of damage from collecting all of the moisture the air carries. A common result of high humidity levels in your home is mold. Mold grows quickly in warm, damp conditions and can fester into an entire colony within 24 hours of their spores attaching themselves to surfaces and feeding. This can cause health effects.

That’s why it’s critically important to take steps in preventing mold growth in the first place. We recommend starting with a dehumidifier for your home. Using a dehumidifier will help you maintain optimal humidity levels that are both healthy and comfortable. Running fans, and checking up on your HVAC system will also help keep the humidity down. Make sure everything is running smoothly and functioning properly to help circulate air flow, and if you need help with an inspection you can always call SERVPRO of Baldwin County We’ll also help check your vents, filters, and make sure everything is in good working condition.

If you do discover mold growing in your home, it should be dealt with immediately - it can be harmful to your home and your health. Call SERVPRO of Baldwin County at 251-928-9625 and our quick response team will be there to begin the mold remediation process right away.

Smoke and Soot Cleanup

3/25/2020 (Permalink)

Smoke and soot is very invasive and can penetrate various cavities in your home, causing damage you cannot see. Our smoke and fire damage expertise allows us to inspect and accurately assess the scope of the damage to develop a comprehensive plan of action.

Smoke and soot facts:

  • Hot smoke migrates to cooler areas and upper levels of a structure.
  • Smoke flows around plumbing systems, seeping through the holes used by pipes to go from floor to floor.
  • The type of smoke may greatly affect the restoration process.

Different Types of Smoke

Believe it or not, there are two different types of smoke–wet and dry. As a result, there are different types of soot residue after a fire. Before the restoration process begins, SERVPRO of Baldwin County will test the soot to determine which type of smoke damage occurred. The cleaning procedures will then be based on the information identified during pretesting. 

Wet Smoke – Plastic and Rubber

  • Low heat, smoldering, pungent odor, sticky, smeary. Smoke webs are more difficult to clean.

Dry Smoke – Paper and Wood

  • Fast burning, high temperatures, heat rises therefore smoke rises.

Protein Fire Residue – Produced by evaporation of material rather than from a fire

  • Virtually invisible, discolors paints and varnishes, extreme pungent odor. 

Our Fire Damage Restoration Services

Since each smoke and fire damage situation is a little different, each one requires a unique solution tailored for the specific conditions at your home or commercial business.  Our professional team has the equipment, expertise, and experience to restore your fire and smoke damage.

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?

Call Us Today – 251-928-9625

We are Cleaning Experts

3/18/2020 (Permalink)

coronavirus- SERVPRO Here to help cover photo SERVPRO is here to help for the Coronavirus

SERVPRO is Here to Help during this time of need

During this unprecedented time caused by the global pandemic of coronavirus, this is a reminder to our customers that we are specialists in cleaning services, and we adhere to the highest cleaning and sanitation standards.

Specialized Training

We are prepared to clean and disinfect your home or business, according to protocols set forth by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. We have years of experience in dealing with biological contaminants, and we will go beyond the scope of work that regular janitorial staff perform on a daily basis.

The CDC encourages cleaning of high-touch surfaces such as counters, tabletops, doorknobs, light switches, bathroom fixtures, toilets, phones, keyboards, tablets and tables. Other spaces mentioned in the CDC’s guidance for commercial spaces include:

  • Kitchen/Food Areas
  • Bathrooms
  • Schools/Classrooms
  • Offices
  • Retail Spaces
  • Water Fountains
  • Shelving/Racks
  • Sales Counters
  • Carpets and Rugs
  • Stair Handrails
  • Elevator Cars
  • Playground Equipment
  • Fitness Equipment

Specialized Products

The CDC recommends usage of a labeled hospital-grade disinfectant with claims against similar pathogens to the coronavirus. Multiple products in the SERVPRO product line carry the EPA-approved emerging pathogens claims. While there is currently no product tested against this particular strain of the coronavirus, we are following all guidelines as provided by the CDC and local authorities.

Call Today for a Proactive Cleaning

If your home or business needs deep cleaning services, call the experts today – SERVPRO of Baldwin County 251-928-9625

Sources:

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/hcp/guidance-prevent-spread.html?CDC_AA_refVal=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cdc.gov%2Fcoronavirus%2F2019-ncov%2Fguidance-prevent-spread.html

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/specific-groups/guidance-business-response.html

Coronavirus – What You Can Do

3/16/2020 (Permalink)

Across the nation and the world as a whole, coronavirus is the top headline as everyone tries to comprehend the situation.

Experts are saying the virus seems to be hardest on the elderly and health-compromised populations, while children and young people are not affected as seriously. However, it is important we all do our part to help stop the spread of this illness.

Because the situation is changing rapidly, it is important to continue referring to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for the most up-to-date information. 

 In the meantime, it is important to follow these best practices:

  • Frequently wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. When soap and running water are unavailable, use an alcohol-based sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
  • Stay home when you have a fever or present a risk of spreading illness to others.
  • Maintain a proper social distance between people (3 feet).
  • Shaking hands and other forms of social greeting that creates contact with other people is discouraged during this period.

Thermal Imaging

3/4/2020 (Permalink)

Thermal imaging was first developed for military use during the Korean War.  This kind of imaging uses temperature to distinguish hot and cold temperatures through walls and long distances.  It is used by firefighters to see through smoke and find people; It is also used by law enforcement to locate suspects and handle search and rescue efforts.  But those aren’t the only ways it can be effective or helpful. 

How We Use Thermal Imaging

We use it to locate water trapped within walls or floors.  Water damage can create long term issues if not detected soon enough.  That’s why it is important to catch the source of the water and correct the problem and dry out any affected materials before it is too late.  Thermal imaging may be the solution before one has to take a destructive approach.  Although, thermal imaging cannon “see” water, it can detect differences in temperature that could indicate a location to test.  This is just one of the reasons why SERVPRO of Baldwin County can be of service to you.  If you suspect water damage, give us a call at 251-928-9625

We are the Professionals

3/4/2020 (Permalink)

We get lots of general cleaning calls but every once in a while, we get the occasional off the wall request that no one else can tackle. Some of these include:

Biohazard

Cleaning up after a bio hazard situation requires a specific process for removal and disposal, as well as Personal Protective Equipment. One should not attempt to handle this situation without professional help. SERVPRO is certified and can clean and remove all affected areas and materials properly. 

This could be from blood or trauma, hoarding, sewage, and chemical or gas spills. 

Vandalism 

Paint can be a tricky thing to clean up. But, when one vandalizes another’s property, it can be traumatizing. SERVPRO has skilled professionals and specific chemical combinations to remove graffiti and paint. 

So, if you have a situation that requires professional services, give SERVPRO of Baldwin County a call at 251-928-9625

Does Commercial Insurance Cover Mold Damage?

3/2/2020 (Permalink)

After a hurricane or flood hits your Baldwin County property, you don’t just have to worry about water damage. You may also find mold within the building. Luckily, your commercial insurance policy should cover the cost of mold cleanup services.

Why Mold Is So Destructive

Mold is a fungus that appears frequently in the environment. It releases spores that spread throughout nature and enter buildings.
Mold damage occurs when spores quickly grow within a property. This typically transpires when there is excessive moisture on the premises due to:

  • Broken water heater
  • Leaky roof
  • Leaky pipe
  • Poor ventilation
  • High humidity

Once the mold begins to spread, it may destroy parts of your property. Mold frequently grows on materials that make up buildings, including carpet, wood and drywall. It then breaks down these items and uses them as food.
Worst of all, the mold may initially grow under floors or behind walls and ceiling tiles. By the time you notice this mold, the damage may have already been done.

Mold and Insurance

A standard commercial insurance policy usually features a fungus exclusion. However, there are exceptions to this exclusion. Specifically, your policy likely offers limited fungus coverage.
This mold insurance covers property destruction due to fungus that results from a specified cause of loss. The main mold-causing perils that fall into this category are water damage and leaking fire suppression systems.

What Is Covered

You can use this insurance money to repair physical damage caused by the mold. The insurance additionally covers the expense of tearing out walls or floorboards to reach the spores.
Addressing the mold on your own could just cause additional harm, so you should hire mold remediation specialists to handle the job. Insurance even covers the cost of testing the property to ensure the black mold cleanup is complete.
Without commercial insurance, you would be stuck paying for mold repairs out of your own pocket. Your insurance provider can give you more details about your specific policy.

Trauma and Crime Scene Cleanup

2/17/2020 (Permalink)

After the police have finished processing a crime or accident scene, the cleaning and restoration process can begin. Many times, crime and accident scenes have blood and other biohazard contaminants that pose a serious health risk. SERVPRO of Baldwin County will respond immediately and has the specialized training, protective equipment, and experience to safely clean trauma and crime scenes.

Our technicians follow OSHA and EPA protocols to help transform an unsafe environment back into a clean, safe home or business. Our first focus is always safety, since crime or accident scenes may involve bloodborne pathogens, harmful chemicals, and other dangers. We will always treat your property and the people involved with the greatest empathy and respect in the face of trying circumstances.

Crime Scene and Trauma Cleaning Services

  • Fingerprint powder and evidence-gathering chemicals
  • Tear gas and pepper spray residues
  • Fire extinguisher residue
  • Blood, bodily fluids, and tissue remnants

Common Trauma and Crime Scene Scenarios

Crime Scene Residues

From fingerprint powder and evidence-gathering chemicals to tear gas and pepper spray residues, we can clean and restore your property after a crime scene investigation.

Bloodborne Pathogens

We remove and dispose of bodily fluids, tissue and other potentially pathogenic substances resulting from accident, trauma, crime or death. Our trained Professionals clean, disinfect and deodorize the structure.

Methamphetamine Labs

Many of the chemicals used in the production of illegal drugs such as methamphetamine are volatile and can leave harmful residues throughout a structure. Our technicians follow federal and state guidelines to properly clean all surfaces.

The Importance of Cleaning Dryer Vents

2/16/2020 (Permalink)

According to FEMA, failure to clean home dryers causes 34% of home dryer fires. Home dryer fires cause $35 million in property loss and can even cause injury or death.

To reduce the risk of these fires happening in your or your insured’s home or business, SERVPRO of Baldwin County can help clean dryer vents and ducts that may have lint buildup.

Other tips for keeping your dryer vents clean from the National Fire Protection Agency include cleaning the lint filter before and after each load and making sure the outdoor vent flap will open and is not restricted by snow, a bird’s nest or other potential obstacles.

For more information on proper cleaning dryer vents contact SERVPRO of Baldwin County at 251-928-9625

Your Belongings and Water Damage

2/16/2020 (Permalink)

Water damage affects not only the structure of your house but also your belongings. SERVPRO of Baldwin County understands that your home is more than a structure; your family’s furniture, clothing, keepsakes, and other belongings help transform a house into a home.

Contents Restoration

SERVPRO of Baldwin County  specializes in restoring contents damaged by fire, water, or mold. Our expertise and “restore” versus “replace” mentality can help you save money while preserving precious keepsakes that can’t be replaced. We pretest your contents to determine what items can be restored back to their condition before the water damage. We utilize several methods of cleaning your contents, including the following:

  • Dry Cleaning - Used for cleaning light residues or to pre-clean prior to wet cleaning.
  • Wet Cleaning - An effective cleaning method for removing moderate to heavy residues.
  • Spray and Wipe -Effective for items that can’t withstand wet cleaning.
  • Foam Cleaning - Used for upholstery fabrics that might shrink or bleed if wet cleaned.
  • Abrasive Cleaning - Involves agitation of the surface being cleaned. 
  • Immersion Cleaning - Contents are dipped into a bath of the cleaning product. 

Move-Outs/Pack-Outs

If your home requires extensive restoration or cleaning, SERVPRO of Baldwin County  can conduct an organized, efficient move-out of the affected area. A move-out will provide several benefits, including the following:

  • A quicker remodeling process
  • Protecting items from potential damage
  • Protecting contents from further on-site damage

When restoration is completed, we will work with you to coordinate the move-in according to your needs. The services offered upon move-in may depend on your insurance coverage.

Electronic Cleanup

Water-damaged electronics can present a serious hazard. Do not attempt to turn on or operate any electrical device that you suspect has been damaged by water. We will coordinate the restoration of your electronics, including:

  • Television sets
  • DVD players
  • Computers
  • And more

The key to restoring electronics is taking prompt action to prevent further damage. We start by cleaning the exterior of electronic devices to help stop further corrosion and damage. Electronics will be cleaned and inspected by a qualified electronics technician.

Document / Photograph Drying

When your valuable documents, including photographs, are damaged by water, extreme caution should be taken to help ensure the water damage does not destroy the document. Although some documents may not be restored to pre-water damage condition, SERVPRO of Baldwin County can save a great deal and help minimize additional damage. 

Depending on the type of documents and the level of water damage, we have five options for the restoration of documents:

  • Air Drying
  • Dehumidification
  • Freezer Drying
  • Vacuum Freeze Drying
  • Vacuum Thermal Drying

Contents Claim Inventory Service

When a water emergency strikes, the damage can often feel overwhelming. We can help ease the worry and confusion during the recovery process by offering our Contents Claim Inventory Service (CCIS), which provides a detailed and accurate list of your belongings. We take a room-by-room inventory of your contents, including digital photos, and in some instances, bar coding.

Our Contents Claim Inventory Service:

  • Preloss list and value of contents
  • Detailed and accurate report
  • Better information to settle claims quicker
  • Assistance with burden of proof for claims
  • Peace of mind when you need it most

4 Reasons to Call SERVPRO of Baldwin County

2/15/2020 (Permalink)

You likely schedule daily or weekly office cleaning service to keep your business tidy. However, even with regular sweeping and vacuuming, your carpets can accumulate stains. To ensure your office is presentable, SERVPRO of Baldwin County offers expert carpet cleaning service, including spot removal and upholstery stain removal, to get rid of stains that sweeping and vacuuming miss. They also offer dry cleaning service for areas where color-fastness is crucial. Below, they reveal some of the most valuable benefits of regularly having your carpets professionally cleaned.

4 Reasons Why You Schedule Commercial Carpet Cleaning Services

1. To Improve Air Quality

Carpeting collects a wide variety of air contaminants, including dust, pollen, mold spores, and bacteria, that can cause allergy symptoms and exacerbate asthma and other respiratory problems. If not removed, these particles could end up back into the air you and your employees breathe, resulting in a lot of downtime and loss of productivity.

2. To Remove Stubborn Stains

Some stains are extremely persistent and cannot be removed without professional attention. For stubborn, unsightly carpet blemishes, contact the experts at SERVPRO of Baldwin County for help. They use powerful cleansers and state-of-the-art techniques and equipment to remove even set-in soils and spatter.

3. To Look Professional

Carpet stains simply don't look professional, and if you invite clients into your offices, they could be turned off by the dirty, grimy appearance. Moreover, even if your customers never enter your premises, the untreated stains could signal that sloppy work or carelessness is acceptable. To avoid sending that type of message, contact a professional carpet cleaning service.

4. To Extend Carpet Life

Deep-down dirt and grime can damage carpet fibers and cause the rug to wear out more quickly than it should. Regular carpet cleaning removes contaminants that cause damage and discoloration and extends the useful life of your office carpeting.

Commercial carpet cleaning offers some important benefits for your business. To schedule service, contact SERVPRO of Baldwin County. They also specialize in water extraction and mold remediation, and they offer 24/7 emergency service throughout Baldwin County. Visit their website to learn more about their services or call 251-928-9625 to request a quote.

Dirty Ducts?

2/15/2020 (Permalink)

Did you know your ventilation system is often the biggest culprit in poor indoor air quality? Inspecting the ductwork in your facility or home should be a high priority. In most cases, the HVAC system has been operating for some time without much attention. Dirty ducts can circulate odors, contaminants such as mold and irritating dust throughout your building or home.

A routine part of SERVPRO® of Baldwin County's service is inspecting the heating, ventilation and air conditioning unit (HVAC). Keeping the HVAC and ductwork clean can potentially extend the life-span of the equipment by allowing it to operate at peak condition, which may help save you money. Duct cleaning may not always be necessary. SERVPRO® of Baldwin County will inspect your HVAC system and ductwork and make recommendations about the best way to address any indoor air quality concerns. This inspection can help save you money and provide peace of mind on the health of your HVAC system and ductwork.

In some circumstances, such as after a fire, smoke or suspected mold growth, duct cleaning becomes an essential part of the cleanup process. In these cases, SERVPRO® of Baldwin County can often restore the HVAC system and ductwork to pre-damage condition.

If you have a fuel-burning furnace, stove or fireplace, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recommends they be inspected for proper functioning and be serviced before each heating season to protect against carbon monoxide poisoning.

The SERVPRO® Duct Cleaning System is proven and cost-efficient. Unlike the majority of duct cleaning services, SERVPRO® of Baldwin County uses a portable ventilation and air duct cleaning system to examine ductwork and make a clean sweep, removing years of dust and grime.

  • The process begins by using patented equipment, including a roto-scraper, which automatically adapts to the duct’s shape and diameter while traveling through the duct, removing debris and filth before vacuuming begins.
  • Next, a powerful push-pull air delivery and collection system transfers the debris from the ducting to a 16-gallon container.
  • Air is filtered through a HEPA filtration system, removing 99.97 percent of the particles in the airstream. HEPA filters capture debris and keep the indoor environment clean.
  • As an optional process, a sealant or coating product may be sprayed to address odor or microbial concerns.
  • Filters will either be cleaned or replaced to remove odor and dirt.

For more information on duct cleaning, or to schedule an appointment, contact SERVPRO® of Baldwin County.

Business and Personal Preparedness

2/14/2020 (Permalink)

Business Preparedness: why and how you should prepare; and personal preparedness: how to pack your Go Bag and sheltering in place. 

Up to 50% of businesses never reopen after being affected by a natural or human-made disaster. Despite this statistic, 62% of businesses don’t have an emergency plan in place!  Your customers expect delivery of their products or services on time, regardless of your situation.  And larger businesses want to insure that their supply chain is not interrupted by a disaster either.  Insurance is only a partial solution.  It does not cover all losses and it will NOT replace customers.  News travels fast and perceptions often differ from reality.  It is up to you to plan now for a disaster to avoid some of these pitfalls.  Many risks cannot be insured, but some risks can be reduced by investing in loss prevention programs, protection systems, and equipment.

According to FEMA’s Business Program Management,” A preparedness policy that is consistent with the mission and vision of the business should be written and disseminated by management. The policy should define roles and responsibilities. It should authorize selected employees to develop the program and keep it current. The policy should also define the goals and objectives of the program. Typical goals of the preparedness program include:

  • Protect the safety of employees, visitors, contractors and others at risk from hazards at the facility. Plan for persons with disabilities and functional needs.
  • Maintain customer service by minimizing interruptions or disruptions of business operations
  • Protect facilities, physical assets and electronic information
  • Prevent environmental contamination
  • Protect the organization’s brand, image and reputation

A word on environmental contamination—many times, smaller businesses without a plan in place will attempt to handle the work on their building on their own.  Depending on the damage and the building in question, it may be safer and more cost effective to hire a professional company to help you.  Why?  Well, for starters, a cleanup company like SERVPRO of Baldwin County has the knowledge of environmental laws and regulations that you may be ignorant of.  Our crew can dispose of potentially hazardous materials in a safe and compliant manner. 

In order to prepare personally for a disaster, you should start by creating a Family Disaster Plan.  To get started, contact your local emergency management office and your local chapter of the American Red Cross. Find out which disasters are likely to occur in your area by using the interactive map.  Meet with your family and plan how you will stay in contact if separated by disaster.  Because many disasters occur with little or no warning, you need to have a plan for what to do before you have instructions from authorities.  Assess your situation.  Decide to stay or change locations.  If you are not in immediate danger, you should stay where you are and get more information before taking your next steps. 

There are 3 types of sheltering, and different types are appropriate for different disasters.  You can shelter in place, shelter for an extended stay, or enter a community shelter.  When you shelter in place, you are sealing a room as a way to protect yourself from contaminants in the air for a short period of time.  You should identify an internal room in your home or work, and store specific items such as snacks and water, a battery-operated radio, a flashlight, and pre-cut plastic sheeting and duct tape to seal off vents and doors and windows.  If you are sheltering for an extended stay, you may need to store enough supplies for 2 weeks.  If you are using a community shelter, you should bring your 3-day disaster supply kit with you.

So what goes in your kit?  Depending on the length of time you will be gone, the time of year of the event, and how many people and pets you have with you, your kit might change.  The items recommended for your basic kit are:

  • 3 day supply of non-perishable food
  • 3 day supply of water (one gallon per person per day)
  • Portable, battery powered radio and extra batteries
  • Flashlight and extra batteries
  • First aid kit and manual.
  • Sanitation and hygiene items (moist towelettes and toilet paper)
  • Matches and waterproof container
  • Whistle
  • Extra clothing (think warmth if in a cold climate)
  • Kitchen accessories and cooking utensils, including a can opener.
  • Photocopies of credit and identification cards
  • Cash and coins
  • Special needs items, such as prescription medications, eyeglasses, and hearing aid batteries.
  • Items for infants and items for pets.

Just as important as putting your supplies together is maintaining them so they are safe when you are ready to use them.

  • Keep canned foods in a cool dry place.
  • Store boxed food in tightly closed plastic or metal containers.
  • Throw out any canned good that becomes swollen, dented, or corroded.
  • Change stored food and water supplies every 6 months.  Write the date on the containers.
  • Keep items in airtight plastic bags and put your entire kit in one or two easy-to-carry containers.
  • Re-think your needs every year and update your kit as your family needs change. 

I recommend keeping a Go Bag in your car, and one in your house, as you will never know where you will be when a disaster hits.  If you need help preparing your home or business for disasters, call us at 251-928-9625.  We can help you create a plan for your building and tag your shut offs when necessary.  And if something does go wrong, call us to help make it "Like it never even happened."

Mold and Moisture in your home

2/14/2020 (Permalink)

Mold Basics

The key to mold control is moisture control.

If mold is a problem in your home, you should clean up the mold promptly and fix the water problem.

It is important to dry water-damaged areas and items within 24 to 48 hours to prevent mold growth.

Why is mold growing in my home?

Molds are part of the natural environment.  Outdoors, molds play a part in nature by breaking down dead organic matter, such as fallen leaves and dead trees.  But indoors, mold growth should be avoided.  Molds reproduce by means of tiny spores; the spores are invisible to the naked eye and float through outdoor and indoor air.  Mold may begin growing indoors when mold spores land on surfaces that are wet.  There are many types of mold, and none of them will grow without water or moisture. 

Who should do the cleanup?

This depends on a number of factors.  One consideration is the size of the mold problem.  If the moldy area is less than about 10 square feet (less than roughly a 3-foot by 3-foot patch), in most cases, you can handle the job yourself, following the guidelines below. 

If there has been a lot of water damage, and/or mold growth covers more than 10 square feet, consult SERVPRO.

If you choose to hire a contractor (or other professional service provider- SERVPRO) to do the cleanup, make sure the contractor has experience cleaning up mold.  Check references and ask the contractor to follow the recommendations of the EPA, the guidelines of the American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH), or other guidelines from professional or government organizations.

Do not run the HVAC system if you know or suspect that it is contaminated with mold.  This could spread mold throughout the building.

If the water and/or mold damage was caused by sewage or other contaminated water, then call in a professional who has experience cleaning and fixing buildings damaged by contaminated water. 

Moisture and Mold Prevention and Control Tips:

Moisture control is the key to mold control, so when water leaks or spills occur indoors, ACT QUICKLY.  If wet or damp materials or areas are dried within 24 to 48 hours after a leak or spill happens, in most cases, mold will not grow.  

Clean and repair roof gutters regularly.  

Make sure the ground slopes away from the building's foundation so that water does not enter or collect around the foundation.  

Keep air-conditioning drip pans clean and the drain lines unobstructed and flowing properly.

Keep indoor humidity low.  If possible, keep indoor humidity below 60% relative humidity (ideally, between 30% to 50%).  Relative humidity can be measured with a moisture or humidity meter, which is a small, inexpensive instrument (from $10 to $50) that is available at many hardware stores.  

If you see condensation or moisture collecting on windows, walls or pipes, ACT QUICKLY to dry the wet surface and reduce the moisture/water source.  Condensation can be a sign of high humidity.

Actions that will help to reduce humidity:

Vent appliances that produce moisture, such as clothes dryers, stoves, and kerosene heaters, to the outdoors, where possible.  (Combustion appliances, such as stoves and kerosene heaters, produce water vapor and will increase the humidity unless vented to the outside.)  

Use air conditioners and/or de-humidifiers when needed.  

Run the bathroom fan or open the window when showering.  Use exhaust fans or open windows whenever cooking, running the dishwasher or dishwashing, etc.

Actions that will help prevent condensation:

Reduce the humidity (see above).  

Increase ventilation and air movement by opening doors and/or windows, when practical.  Use fans as needed.  

Cover cold surfaces, such as cold water pipes, with insulation.  

Increase air temperature.

Things You Should Know About Mold

1.  There is no practical way to eliminate all mold and mold spores in the indoor environment; the way to control indoor mold growth is to control moisture.

2.  If mold is a problem in your home, you must clean up the mold and eliminate sources of moisture.

3.  Fix the source of the water problem or leak to prevent mold growth.

4.  Reduce indoor humidity (to 30% to 60%) to decrease mold growth by:

a. venting bathrooms, dryers, and other moisture-generating sources to the outside;

b. using air conditioners and de-humidifiers;

c. increasing ventilation; and

d. using exhaust fans whenever cooking, dishwashing, and cleaning.  

5.  Clean and dry any damp or wet building materials and furnishings within 24 to 48 hours to prevent mold growth.

6.  Clean mold off hard surfaces with water and detergent, and dry completely. Absorbent materials that are moldy (such as carpeting and ceiling tiles) may need to be replaced.

7.  Prevent condensation.  Reduce the potential for condensation on cold surfaces (i.e., windows, piping, exterior walls, roof and floors) by adding insulation.

8.  In areas where there is a perpetual moisture problem, do not install carpeting.

9.  Molds can be found almost anywhere; they can grow on virtually any substance, provided moisture is present. There are molds that can grow on wood, paper, carpet, and foods.

Top 10 Tips for Preventing Mold after Your Home is Water Damaged

When a home is flooded, due to either a natural disaster or a major water leak within the house, mold can set in fairly fast, sometimes in as little as 48 hours.

1.       Open all windows and doors to increase ventilation and help dry things out. If you have power and you know it is safe to use, set up fans to speed up the process.

2.       Wall to wall carpeting and padding should be removed and thrown away. Wet carpeting may be very slow to dry and can ruin the floor underneath.

3.       Upholstered furniture, mattresses and pillows should be disposed of. These are very hard to clean completely and can take a long time to dry and this is exactly the conditions that mold needs to take hold.

4.       If the wallboard has come in contact with water, it will need to be removed. Wet wallboard will swell and deteriorate and mold can set in very quickly.

5.       Dispose of any wet books and papers that aren’t valuable. Make copies of important documents and throw the originals away if possible.

6.       Mop vinyl or ceramic floors with a disinfecting cleaner. Make sure that the underlayment is dry.

7.       Wash draperies and curtains or have them dry cleaned according to the manufactures’ instructions.

8.       Remove as much moisture from hardwood floors as soon as possible. Use fans and dehumidifiers to speed up the process but avoid using heat as it may cause the floor to warp.

9.       If ceiling tiles are wet, remove and discard them. Allow the space to dry and air out completely before installing a new ceiling.

10.   You may need to hire a water remediation service if the damage is extensive so the house can be dried out as soon as possible. Remember that when it comes to preventing mold, the sooner you can tackle the water damage the better chance you have of preventing mold.

Hurricane Facts

2/13/2020 (Permalink)

  • A hurricane is an intense tropical storm with powerful winds and rain.
  • Other names for a hurricane include cyclone, typhoon and tropical storm.

  • While they are essentially the same thing, the different names usually indicate where the storm took place. Tropical storms that form in the Atlantic or Northeast Pacific (near the United States) are called hurricanes, those that form near in the Northwest Pacific (near Japan) are called typhoons and those that form in the South Pacific or Indian oceans are called cyclones.

  • Hurricanes usually form in tropical areas of the world.

  • Hurricanes develop over warm water and use it as an energy source.

  • Hurricanes lose strength as they move over land.

  • Coastal regions are most at danger from hurricanes.

  • As well as violent winds and heavy rain, hurricanes can also create tornadoes, high waves and widespread flooding.

  • Hurricanes are regions of low atmospheric pressure (also known as a depression).

  • The wind flow of hurricanes in the southern hemisphere is clockwise while the wind flow of hurricanes in the northern hemisphere is counterclockwise.

  • Weather in the eye of a hurricane is usually calm.

  • The eye of a hurricane can be anywhere from 2 miles (3.2 kilometers) in diameter to over 200 miles (320 kilometers) but they are usually around 30 miles (48 kilometers).

  • The winds around the eye of a hurricane are usually the strongest.

  • Hurricanes can be tracked by weather satellites and weather radar closer to land.

  • Hurricanes have led to the death of around 2 million people over the last 200 years.

  • The 1970 Bhola Cyclone that struck Bangladesh killed over 300000 people.

  • In 2005 Hurricane Katrina killed over 1800 people in the United States and caused around $80 billion dollars worth of property damage. The city of New Orleans was hit particularly hard with levee breaches leading to around 80% of the city being flooded.

Tornado 101

2/13/2020 (Permalink)

What is a tornado?

A tornado is a narrow, violently rotating column of air that extends from the base of a thunderstorm to the ground. Because wind is invisible, it is hard to see a tornado unless it forms a condensation funnel made up of water droplets, dust and debris. Tornadoes are the most violent of all atmospheric storms.

Where do tornadoes occur?

Tornadoes occur in many parts of the world, including Australia, Europe, Africa, Asia, and South America. Even New Zealand reports about 20 tornadoes each year. Two of the highest concentrations of tornadoes outside the U.S. are Argentina and Bangladesh.

How many tornadoes occur in the U.S. each year?

About 1,200 tornadoes hit the U.S. yearly. Since official tornado records only date back to 1950, we do not know the actual average number of tornadoes that occur each year. Plus, tornado spotting and reporting methods have changed a lot over the last several decades.

Where is tornado alley?

Tornado Alley is a nickname invented by the media for a broad area of relatively high tornado occurrence in the central U.S. Various Tornado Alley maps look different because tornado occurrence can be measured many ways: by all tornadoes, tornado county-segments, strong and violent tornadoes only, and databases with different time periods. Please remember, violent or killer tornadoes do happen outside “Tornado Alley” every year.

When are tornadoes most likely?

Tornado season usually refers to the time of year the U.S. sees the most tornadoes. The peak “tornado season” for the Southern Plains is during May into early June. On the Gulf coast, it is earlier during the spring. In the northern plains and upper Midwest, tornado season is in June or July. But, remember, tornadoes can happen at any time of year. Tornadoes can also happen at any time of day or night, but most tornadoes occur between 4–9 p.m.

What is the difference between a Tornado WATCH and a Tornado WARNING?

Tornado WATCH is issued by the NOAA Storm Prediction Center . Meteorologists who watch the weather 24/7 across the entire U.S. for weather conditions that are favorable for tornadoes. A watch can cover parts of a state or several states. Watch and prepare for severe weather and stay tuned to NOAA Weather Radio to know when warnings are issued.

Tornado WARNING is issued by your local NOAA National Weather Service Forecast Office, meteorologists who watch the weather 24/7 over a designated area. This means a tornado has been reported by spotters or indicated by radar and there is a serious threat to life and property to those in the path of the tornado. ACT now to find safe shelter! A warning can cover parts of counties or several counties in the path of danger.

Content Credit: nssl.noaa.gov

5 Steps to Mold Remediation

2/12/2020 (Permalink)

Five steps that each mold-removal specialist takes when conducting mold remediation includes:

  1. Determine the degree of contamination. The first step for a mold remediation specialist to determine the extent of the mold damage and test for contamination within the facility. Because mold spores and other microscopic contaminants can travel easily throughout a building, they may collect and analyze samples from affected as well as unaffected areas of the building. Once finished the inspection they will develop a remediation plan for the mold removal specialist with steps to return the home to its preloss condition (Condition 1).
  1. Set up and verify containment. To make sure mold contamination does not spread to other areas of a facility, the mold remediation specialist will set up containment by creating isolation barriers. Once the barriers are set up, the specialist will need to verify the containment with a lower partial pressure differential (negative pressure) to ensure there is no air leakage between containment zones. Exit chambers would then be used to serve as a transition between the containment and the unaffected area of the building. Once the containment is verified and the correct amount of pressure is achieved, the removal process can begin.
  1. Remove non-salvageable materials. Porous materials and items that cannot be restored or cleaned effectively must be carefully discarded.  Non-salvageable items include but are not limited to drywall, insulation and other items with visible mold growth. It is important for the specialist to wear the appropriate personal protective equipment which may include a full face respirator, disposable coveralls and nitrile gloves.
  1. Clean surfaces with a high-attention to detail. A mold remediation specialist will likely begin the cleaning process by thoroughly vacuuming the contaminated areas using a HEPA vacuum with a high-efficiency filter to catch mold spores. He or she will then begin a detailed cleaning process involving mold removal tools such as a HEPA filtered sander, followed by the damp wiping of surfaces with an effective cleaning solution.
  1. Verify remediation. Once cleaning is complete, and verify the remediation was successful. The area must be returned to the dry standard and should be visually dust free with no malodor.

 Mold remediation requires mold removal specialists to perform techniques that promote source removal rather than relying on chemicals, paints and coatings as a replacement.  Understanding and managing air flow is also critical to the success of a mold remediation project. 

Types of Storm Damage

2/12/2020 (Permalink)

Here are a few quick tips to consider should storm damage hit your home or commercial property.

Wind Damage Restoration
Hurricanes often cause severe wind damage. Your roof is particularly susceptible. Roof damage from strong winds may lift roof shingles, cause cracks, or remove part or all of the roof. Harsh winds and rains can shear away asphalt tiles. Flying debris can also cause cracks and holes in your roof and siding. Correcting roof damage may challenge homeowners and business owners after a disaster, especially because a roof leak may not be obvious.

Roof Leaks

Why are many roof leaks and roof damage hard to detect? The storm may loosen flashing without creating a problem that’s easily visible to the eye. Loose flashing can cause another roof leak even weeks after the initial storm damage. A small roof leak can produce damp, moldy conditions inside your home or business. You best bet is to secure roof repair immediately after the wind damage. Doing so can prevent long term interior damage. A wind damage restoration expert, like the professionals at SERVPRO of Baldwin County, will help assure the homeowner or business owner receives a comprehensive roof assessment and roof repair services when hurricane or wind damage hits.

Flood Damage & Recovery
If your home or business is near water or in a low-lying area, flood water damage is a risk. Heavy rains and flooding may cause water damage many miles from the coast or from any large body of water. If the land around your home or business cannot absorb the additional water flooding may happen. Even homes and businesses at higher elevations can sustain flood damage if frozen pipes break. Flood pump failures contribute to basement flooding and contaminated ground water too.

Flooding may also disrupt your municipal water system. Experts need to assess ground water and evaluate the condition of pipes following flood damage. Hiring a storm restoration professional, like SERVPRO of Baldwin County may allow you to begin your cleanup process even before water restoration occurs. And don’t forget-- cleaning before water restoration often proves essential yet challenging.

By relying upon a trained water damage restoration specialist, you'll usually obtain faster storm remediation. These experts may suggest ways to help mitigate flood water damage in the future, for instance, by requesting backup flood pump installation.

Hail Damage & Recovery
Hail may be the most overlooked cause of major storm damage. Hail can damage not just your roof but also your siding, exterior walls, and any detached sheds or outbuildings. You may think you’ve survived a hail storm but do know that hail damage is difficult to identify. Again, you’re wise to hire a storm damage restoration professional to inspect your roof, exterior walls, and outbuildings for damage. Dark spots on your roof are areas where the roofing granules have been knocked away. These weakened spots can lead to other more extensive problems such as leaks and cracks. Cracked and chipped siding is also a sign of hail damage.

Impact Damage & Recovery
In a major storm practically anything can become a creator of damage to your home or business. Think about trees. Your home may survive storm damage only to have a tree on your property succumb to the wind, hail, or rain and fall onto your house. A neighbor’s outdoor lawn furniture can become wind-blown projectiles. Extreme wind pressure turns regular outdoor items into tools of destruction. After storm damage, the professionals at SERVPRO of Baldwin County do a walk around to look for the signs of these types of unusual damage.

Help Is Here

The team at SERVPRO of Baldwin County has specialized training and experience in fire restoration services, natural disaster prevention, water damage, and natural disaster cleanup. Our staff is highly trained in building services and property damage restoration. We study IICRC standards and best practices in cleaning and restoration. 

What To Do When Water is Everywhere

2/11/2020 (Permalink)

Water leaks within a home or business can seep into carpet, flooring, baseboards, and walls while moving throughout the structure.  SERVPRO of Baldwin County Franchise Professionals understand how disruptive water damages can be for a family. Water leaks in a business can not only disrupt the facility, but also can interrupt day to day business functions, which could possibly close the business and affect revenues. 

Timely mitigation is key to the restoration process.  Quick response time helps ensure that damage is contained and the restoration process begins promptly. This saves on the amount of damage, cost of claims, and assists in reducing losses from business interruption due to a loss.  Timely and proper water mitigation will also help keep mold from developing which could cause people to become ill!  SERVPRO Professionals will be able to identify water regardless of where it hides. Your local SERVPRO Franchise Professionals cover Baldwin County. We offer 24-hour emergency response from our trained professionals to help make it "Like it never even happened."

Leak Prevention Tips

  1.   Check roof for deterioration.
  2.   Check gutters and downspouts.
  3.   Check basements and crawl spaces for moisture.
  4.   Check appliances in kitchens, break rooms, and cafeterias.
  5.   Check sinks and toilets in bathrooms.
  6.   Check HVAC for leaks and blockages. 

Does Your Baldwin County Home Have Mold?

2/11/2020 (Permalink)

Microscopic mold spores naturally occur almost everywhere, both outdoors and indoors. This makes it impossible to remove all mold from a home or business. Therefore, mold remediation reduces the mold spore count back to its natural or baseline level. Some restoration businesses advertise “mold removal” and even guarantee to remove all mold, which is a fallacy. Consider the following mold facts:

  • Mold is present almost everywhere, indoors and outdoors.
  • Mold spores are microscopic and float along in the air and may enter your home through windows, doors, or AC/heating systems or even hitch a ride indoors on your clothing or a pet.
  • Mold spores thrive on moisture. Mold spores can quickly grow into colonies when exposed to water. These colonies may produce allergens and irritants.
  • Before mold remediation can begin, any sources of water or moisture must be addressed. Otherwise, the mold may return.
  • Mold often produces a strong, musty odor and can lead you to possible mold problem areas.
  • Even higher-than-normal indoor humidity can support mold growth. Keep indoor humidity below 45 percent.

If your home or business has a mold problem, we can inspect and assess your property and use our specialized training, equipment, and expertise to remediate your mold infestation.

Smoke Detectors Save Lives

2/10/2020 (Permalink)

Smoke Alarms are a simple way to alert homeowners before a fire can destroy lives!

In homes, smoke alarms should be in every bedroom and on every level, including the basement. In office and commercial spaces, check your state requirements or contact the local Fire Marshall to help ensure all codes are met.

Test smoke alarms monthly using the test button. Smoke alarms without batteries that are wired into the home need to be replaced every ten years, regardless of if they seem to still be working. Other types of alarms need their batteries replaced once a year, and the unit itself replaced every ten years. If the alarm chirps "low battery," take the proper steps to replace the unit or batteries immediately. Don't put it off, you may forget.

In larger commercial facilities, hard wired or wireless smoke detectors offer benefits like not needing to be tested as often, and activating in the entire building, even if the smoke is in just one area.

If you need help installing a smoke detector or alarm contact your local fire department, a licensed electrician, or the American Red Cross.

The Importance of Smoke Alarms

2/10/2020 (Permalink)

Smoke alarms play a vital role in saving lives, and when properly installed, can reduce the risk of fire injury in half.

The National Fire Protection Association recommends smoke alarms be installed in every bedroom, outside all sleeping quarters and on every level of the house.  Business owners should consult the local Fire Marshall to ensure specific building fire codes and smoke detector requirements are met.

Smoke alarms work best when paired with a fire escape plan.  A plan allows your family, employees or clients to escape quickly and safely in an emergency situation. 

Review the following tips regarding smoke detector installation and maintenance. Install smoke alarms on every level of the home, including the basement.

  • Smoke alarms should be installed away from the kitchen to prevent false alarms.  Generally, they should be at least 10 feet from a cooking appliance.
  • Test smoke alarms at least once a month using the test button.
  • Replace batteries in all smoke alarms at least once a year.  We have found it useful to change the batteries when daylight savings time either begins or ends.  If an alarm "chirps," the battery is low and should be replaced right away.
  • Replace all smoke alarms when they are 10 years old.

Just the Facts: Smoke Alarms

  • Three out of five fire deaths occur in homes with no smoke alarms or when the alarms are not working
  • Smoke alarm failures usually result from missing, disconnected, or dead batteries.
  • More than one-third (37 percent) of home fire deaths result in faulty alarms. Smoke alarms play a vital role in saving lives, and when properly installed, can reduce the risk of fire injury in half.
  • The risk of dying in a home fire is cut in half in homes with working smoke alarms.

SERVPRO of Baldwin County wants you and your family to be safe.  If you have a home or business fire, we are here for you and are a phone call away. 251-928-9625

Clean Gutters Prevent Water Damage in Your Home

2/5/2020 (Permalink)

Do you tend to put off cleaning the gutters until as late as possible?

Maybe you even skipped doing it last year because it’s such a dreaded household chore.

No matter what time of year, gutters play a key role in preventing water damage to a home. Their purpose is to channel rainwater to the downspouts and away from the home. Because of this, it is important to make sure the gutters are working properly year-round in order to protect your property against potential water damage.

Clogged gutters can cause many issues for a homeowner. In the spring, summer, and fall, gutters are often clogged with fallen leaves. And in the winter, snow and ice can be the culprit. Water that is blocked by debris in the gutters will find the path of least resistance when it tries to drain. This often means it will find its way into the walls and ceilings of the home causing interior damage.

To help avoid water damage due to clogged gutters, the gutters should be well maintained and cleaned AT LEAST twice a year.

Following are the best tools that help you clean the nastiness out of your gutters.

Four Ways To Clean Gutters

Generally speaking, there are four ways to clean gutters:

1.  Climb a ladder and use a variety of tools to grab and remove the leaves and debris at eye-level.

2.  Attach tools to a wet/dry shop vac to suck up the leaves or to blast them out of the gutters.

3.  Attach tools to your water hose to spray leaves out of the gutters.

4.  Use a long-reaching pole to remove leaves from the gutters while standing at ground level.

Of course, there are some gutter cleaning tools that combine one or more of the methods mentioned above. And each has its pros and cons. In the end, it all comes down to your own personal preference and which seems like the safest and easiest option to you.

Mold Prevention

2/5/2020 (Permalink)

Let’s face it, mold is never a good sign in any situation.
It can be extremely costly and hazardous to your health, if it’s growing in your home. We want to share some information with you on how to prevent mold growth in your home. Mold can grow anywhere, with that being said there is no way to completely remove mold. Once mold spores have been disturbed, they travel through the air contaminating other areas.  Do not worry, we are here to help should you discover a mold problem. We have a mold specialist on staff to address your mold issues and determine a remediation plan that works the best for you. Give us a call at 251-928-9625 to schedule a site visit. Here are some tips to help prevent mold in your home:

  1. Identify and fix any problem areas in your home. You can’t mold proof your home, you can make it resistant though.  Anywhere moisture is present, mold can grow. If you notice any condensation, water staining on your walls or ceilings, or leaky pipes you need to get it fixed as fast as possible. Sometimes there is moisture or water in areas that you are unaware of, mold can spread very quickly in these conditions.
  2. Dry any wet areas immediately. If your carpet is wet, make sure your carpet is thoroughly dried. Mold can develop quickly on your carpet and padding and will need to be removed if this happens.
  3. Prevent as much moisture as possible by using proper ventilation. Your kitchen, bathroom, and laundry room are high moisture areas. Make sure to vent your appliances that can cause moisture. Use dehumidifiers as needed.
  4. Equip your home with mold resistant products. There are now drywall and paint products that are manufactured with mold inhibitors.
  5. Inspect your gutters. Clean them out regularly and repair them if need be.
  6. “Bleaching” mold is not an effective way to get rid of mold, it does just that “bleaches” it. To effectively get rid of mold and mold growth you must use an antimicrobial.
  7. Having a vapor barrier in your crawl space will prevent moisture and keep mold growth to a slight minimum. If a little mold growth does occur the vapor barrier will also protect your family from the harmful fumes that come from mold.

Prepare Your Home for Potential Water Damage

8/22/2019 (Permalink)

Flooding in your home can happen at anytime, but your home can be even more exposed to water damage when it rains. As we go through hurricane season, storm damage becomes more of a threat to your property.  Here are a few tips to avoid damage caused by storm and water.  

1. Modify your homes water valves.  If the city's main sewer line gets backed up during a heavy rain storm, you could find yourself standing in a pile of you-know-what.  You may want to consider installing an interior or exterior backflow valve.  Backflow valves prevent your water system from being contaminated from water flowing backwards into your supply lines.  

2. Clear gutter, drains, and downspouts. Clogged gutters and downspouts can end up in a messy flood. Take the time to clean them and clear them of any and all debris before the rain comes.

3. Cover air vents. One of the most common ways water fins its way into a home is through the home's air vents. If you know that heavy rain is in the forecast and that you are at risk of flooding, cover your air vents with thick plastic sheeting from both the outside and the inside. 

4. Check your sealant surrounding doors and windows. Make sure that any gaps or holes in the sealant surrounding the doors and windows are filled in. This will help stop rain water from finding its way into your home. 

If water still manages to find a way into your home and you need assistance, give SERVPRO of Baldwin County a call at 251-928-9625! We're available 24/7 for emergency services. 

The Science of Drying Out Water Damage

8/21/2019 (Permalink)

Drying out water damage in customer's home

When Water Damage happens in your house the first things we all think about is to grab towels and mop up the water and finish with placing our house fans to dry up the area. Did you know that there is a Science of Drying and restoring your property?

With all the factors that go into what can happen with water damage its time that matters the most to help prevent other problems to arise. When you call SERVPRO of Baldwin County, we have the state-of-art equipment to speed up Mother Nature. When a property is wet it can naturally dry itself but also takes too long. With this process other damage such as mold and a weaken structure can happen creating more damage than if it was taken care of faster.

Here at SERVPRO of Baldwin County we have the knowledge of psychrometrics which is essential to restoring water damage to its preloss condition. Our Team has been trained on all of the drying techniques that we use every day and are knowledgeable on how to dry your home the fasted way possible. SERVPRO of Baldwin County has equipment to help dry your hard wood floors and carpets, hard to reach spaces in your walls and many more.

We have tools to monitor the drying process allowing us to take pictures and different readings to track the restoration progress. With the readings that we get we use our program SERVPRO DryBOOK to record information to ensure your restoration is done properly and efficiently every time.

We are here for any size Water Damage situation 24 hours a day and 7 days a week!

What is a Flood Cut

8/20/2019 (Permalink)

A flood cut is the removal of the bottom 12-24 inches of drywall in a flood affected room. 

Examples of why we flood cut:

  • If we detect there is wet insulation
  • The water is contaminated from the sewage or other storm  related contaminates
  • If any microbial growth is detected

After the lower wall portions are removed, any studs or framing are thoroughly cleaned and disinfected. Once the walls are completely dried, new insulation can easily be installed and the finalization of the build back can continue. 

Our Process:

The water removal process begins almost immediately and removes the majority of the water. We use powerful pumps and vacuum units to quickly remove hundreds or thousands of gallons from your property, which helps prevent secondary water damage and mold growth.

We use specialized equipment to remove the remaining water that is harder to access. Our Professionals will use room measurements, temperature, and relative humidity to determine the optimal number of air movers and dehumidifiers needed to dry your home or business.

SERVPRO of Baldwin County...Always Here to Help! Call us today at 251-928-9625

What To Do: Water Damage from Clean Water

8/16/2019 (Permalink)

Do:

  • Shut off the source of water if possible or contact a qualified party to stop the water source.
  • Turn off circuit breakers for wet areas of the building, when access to the power distribution panel is safe from electrical shock.
  • Remove as much exess water as possible by mopping and blotting.
  • Wipe excess water from wood furniture after removing lamps and tabletop items.
  • Remove and prop up wet upholstery cushions for even drying.
  • Place aluminum foil or wood blocks between furniture legs and wet carpeting.
  • Remove to a safe, dry place any paintings, art objects, computers, documents and other materials that are valuable or sensitive to moisture.
  • Use wooden clothespins to keep furniture skirting off damp floors.
  • Hang draperies with coated hangers to avoid contact with wet carpeting or floors.
  • Hang furs and leather goods to dry separately at room temperature.

Detecting a Water Leak

8/16/2019 (Permalink)

Water damage can happen when you least expect it. Standing water is one thing, but, what happens with the water that you don't see? And, what happens if there is too much water to clean up?

Detecting Water Damage

With water damage, it's the water you don't see that causes the most damage. It is no surprise that water damage that has not been properly mitigated can lead to microbial growth and mold. After a water damage, it is important to have the entire area checked for moisture in order to prevent more extensive damage, and ultimately, more expensive repairs. If you've noticed water damage, call your local SERVPRO professional. We will be able to determine if the moisture levels in the home are normal. If they are not, we will show you where the moisture is found, develop a scope of how the site should be properly mitigated, and update you daily with drying progress. 

Call SERVPRO

There is no such thing as a small disaster. A small leak now can turn into a large damage if not properly remediated. By using a quality restoration team like SERVPRO of Baldwin County, that unexpected water damage will stay a thing of the past. If you have a water damage, call the team that is faster to any size disaster.

Fire Damage: Common Causes

8/16/2019 (Permalink)

Home electrical fires account for 51,000 fires each year, and an estimated $1.3 billion in property damage. Learn these common causes of fire damage to prevent fire damage in your home or business:

Many electrical fires are caused by faulty electrical outlets or outdated appliances. Frayed appliance cords can also lead to electrical fires.  Under no circumstances should you ever remove the ground plug from an appliance cord. These appliance cords are only to be used with outlets that can handle the extra amount of electricity.

Another cause of electrical fires is the misuse of extension cords. Extension cords are only to be used on a temporary basis and not as permanent wiring. Extension cords can overheat and cause fires when not used properly. Never should you run extension cords through walls and ceilings, and never use nails or staples to hold an extension cord in place.

Space heaters are also a major cause of electrical fires. Space heaters should always be kept on a flat, level surface to prevent being turned over. These portable heaters are often placed too close to curtains, beds, and other combustible surfaces. Remember to always keep space heaters at least three feet from items that can burn. 

Restoring Commercial Property

8/16/2019 (Permalink)

Flooding and water damage events at Baldwin County commercial properties are often complex with numerous issues that require a knowledgeable and flexible response. Whether we’re dealing with a relatively small water cleanup scenario or a large scale event, we work quickly to assess each unique situation and isolate the damaged area. In many instances, normal operations can continue in a temporary space while we restore your facility.

Restoring Commercial Properties Presents Unique Challenges

Our professionals are trained to be mindful of legal and environmental concerns and strive to fully restore the damaged area while working within your budgetary constraints. We understand that every hour spent cleaning up is an hour of lost revenue and productivity. So when an emergency situation arises in your business, give us a call and we’ll be there fast with the help you need.

About SERVPRO of Baldwin County

SERVPRO of Baldwin County specializes in the cleanup and restoration of commercial and residential property after a water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.

Detecting Water Damage

8/16/2019 (Permalink)

Water damage can happen when you least expect it. Standing water is one thing, but, what happens with the water that you don't see? And, what happens if there is too much water to clean up?

Detecting Water Damage

With water damage, it's the water you don't see that causes the most damage. It is no surprise that water damage that has not been properly mitigated can lead to microbial growth and mold. After a water damage, it is important to have the entire area checked for moisture in order to prevent more extensive damage, and ultimately, more expensive repairs. If you've noticed water damage, call your local SERVPRO professional. We will be able to determine if the moisture levels in the home are normal. If they are not, we will show you where the moisture is found, develop a scope of how the site should be properly mitigated, and update you daily with drying progress. 

Call SERVPRO

There is no such thing as a small disaster. A small leak now can turn into a large damage if not properly remediated. By using a quality restoration team like SERVPRO of Baldwin County, that unexpected water damage will stay a thing of the past. If you have a water damage, call the team that is faster to any size disaster.

Fire Damage

8/16/2019 (Permalink)

Fire damage can be stressful and overwhelming. Whether it is your home or your business, it is never easy to see your belongings covered in smoke or soot. Once you have a fire, it is important to contact your insurance agent and let them know what has happened. If the fire is large enough to warrant a claim, the sooner you file means the sooner your adjuster will be able to assess your damage. Your next call should be to a reputable restoration company such as SERVPRO of Baldwin County. Following a fire, it is important to make sure your structure is secure to prohibit vandalism to your structure and contents. SERVPRO of Baldwin County can do this for you by providing emergency board-up services and roof tarping if necessary. Depending on whether or not you have filed a claim, our team will develop a scope with you or with you and your adjuster. We will assess all of the structure and contents to determine what is salvageable and what needs to be removed and/or inventoried to be replaced. Often the restoration and cleaning of the contents can be completed onsite, but, if that is not possible, we will clean, pack, and move your contents to store in our climate controlled facility. We will also provide you with an electronic inventory. If the contents must be moved out for repairs, following the move out, we will begin with the structural work which can include the following: cleaning, demolition, and/or repairs. We will move your clean belongings back into your home or business following completion of the structural work.

Call SERVPRO of Baldwin County

When choosing a restoration company, it is important to choose an IICRC certified firm such as SERVPRO of Baldwin County. Our team is professionally trained and specializes in water (WTR) and fire (FRST) damage restoration for both residential and commercial properties. We provide emergency services and are available 24/7. 

Commercial Mitigation

8/15/2019 (Permalink)

Sprinkler systems can be a common source of water damage in commercial facilities. While their benefits far outweigh their cons, both properly and improperly working sprinkler systems can contribute to a flooded facility. In this case, a fire in an adjacent building caused the sprinkler system in this building to go off over the weekend. The sprinkler shut-off was eventually found but not until the damage had affected 36,000 sq ft of the facility. If this was your facility, what would you do?

Choose a Trained Professional

When your facility is affected, it is important to call a commercial drying specialist such as SERVPRO of Baldwin County.  At SERVPRO of Baldwin County, we understand that every hour closed leads to an hour lost of productivity and potential revenue. Commercial damage restoration produces unique challenges so it is very important to choose a trained professional with a proven track record. 

At SERVPRO of Baldwin County, we will respond immediately to your damage regardless of size or scope. When your facility is affected, no job is too big or too small. 

If your find yourself in this situation, call SERVPRO of Baldwin County.

What To Do After a Water Damage

8/15/2019 (Permalink)

Do:

  • Shut off the source of water if possible or contact a qualified party to stop the water source.
  • Turn off circuit breakers for wet areas of the building, when access to the power distribution panel is safe from electrical shock.
  • Remove as much exess water as possible by mopping and blotting.
  • Wipe excess water from wood furniture after removing lamps and tabletop items.
  • Remove and prop up wet upholstery cushions for even drying.
  • Place aluminum foil or wood blocks between furniture legs and wet carpeting.
  • Remove to a safe, dry place any paintings, art objects, computers, documents and other materials that are valuable or sensitive to moisture.
  • Use wooden clothespins to keep furniture skirting off damp floors.
  • Hang draperies with coated hangers to avoid contact with wet carpeting or floors.
  • Hang furs and leather goods to dry separately at room temperature.

Don't

  • Enter rooms with standing water where electrical shock hazards may exist.
  • Enter affected areas if electrical outlets, switches, circuit breakers or electrical equipment have been exposed to or are submerged in water. Always avoid electrical shock hazards.
  • Leave books, newspapers, magazines or other colored items on wet carpets or floors as this could potentially cause staining.
  • Leave Oriental rugs or any other rugs on the floor on wet wall-to-wall carpets to cause staining.
  • Use your household vacuum cleaner to remove water, possibly causing electrical shock to yourself or damage to the vacuum cleaner.
  • Use TVs or other appliances while standing on wet carpets or floors, and especially not on wet concrete flooring.
  • Turn on ceiling fixtures if the ceiling is wet or enter rooms where ceilings are sagging from retained water. 

Commercial Water Damage

8/14/2019 (Permalink)

This photo was taken at a recent commercial water damage.

No one wants to discover water or fire damage on a Monday morning. Unfortunately, a commercial facility is more likely to have a larger, more significant damage than a residential home. This is not only because of the facility's size, but it is also because commercial facilities generally have longer periods without anyone there (i.e. overnight, weekends, holidays). Because of this, it is important to have a plan in place in case a disaster does happen. 

Call SERVPRO of Baldwin County

Did you know that we do commercial damage restoration? We know the stress and anxiety that water or fire damage can bring to your business. At SERVPRO of Baldwin County, we are dedicated to limiting your business interruption by being faster to any size disaster. We can be on-site within a few hours to help reduce future damage water can cause. We have the right equipment, procedures and training to help ensure the structure is clean & dry the first time, saving you time and money. 

Commercial Fire/Water Damage

8/14/2019 (Permalink)

This flooded room was caused by a sprinkler system due to a fire in an adjacent building.

Sprinkler systems can be a common source of water damage in commercial facilities. While their benefits far outweigh their cons, both properly and improperly working sprinkler systems can contribute to a flooded facility. In this case, a fire in an adjacent building caused the sprinkler system in this building to go off over the weekend. The sprinkler shut-off was eventually found but not until the damage had affected 36,000 sq ft of the facility. If this was your facility, what would you do?

Choose a Trained Professional

When your facility is affected, it is important to call a commercial drying specialist such as SERVPRO of Baldwin County.  At SERVPRO of Baldwin County, we understand that every hour closed leads to an hour lost of productivity and potential revenue. Commercial damage restoration produces unique challenges so it is very important to choose a trained professional with a proven track record. At SERVPRO of Baldwin County, we will respond immediately to your damage regardless of size or scope. When your facility is affected, no job is too big or too small. If your find yourself in this situation, call SERVPRO of Baldwin County.

4 Tips for Keeping Bugs Out of Your Home This Summer

7/12/2019 (Permalink)

Every year after winter has come and gone, bugs come out of hibernation and are looking for places to feed and mate. They look for moist, dark places to call home, and your home is often the prime real estate. Whether it’s ants, cockroaches, or spiders, there’s plenty that we can do to help keep them out of our homes! 

Cleanliness is The Best Deterrent

Insects like to find dark, cluttered places to call home and multiply. Do your part and make sure that you are on top of your cleaning to make sure that the insects can’t take up residence in your home.

Always Check the Screen Doors

Another item that often goes overlooked is the screen door/screens for windows. It’s important to check for cracks or openings before spring comes around to ensure that no bugs can make a break for your home. If you happen to find any holes in the screen doors, do your part and plan to repair them as soon as possible! The last thing you want is an unintentional bug infestation because one tiny hole was overlooked.

Food Management 

One big offense that people oftentimes find themselves doing is leaving food out in the open. If you or your family have a bad habit of leaving food out on the counter overnight, or leaving food open in the pantry, don’t! This is a prime resource for bugs to get inside of your home. Make sure to discard or refrigerate any food that is being left out.

Removing Unnecessary Water

Finally, one of the least known components of a bug problem is water. If there is any kind of leak anywhere, or somewhere that has a dark and damp surface, bugs are attracted to it. Do your best to ensure that any leaks are fixed immediately and that standing water is not left out in the open for too long. Cleaning these areas immediately will persuade the insects to seek refuge elsewhere. This is prime breeding grounds for these bugs, don’t let them have a chance to get comfortable and settle!

If you find a leak or water damage in your home, call SERVPRO of Baldwin County to make it "Like it never even happened."

Extension Cords Safety Tips

7/12/2019 (Permalink)

Extension cords are one of the most commonly misused items in a home and at the office.  To ensure safety use these following tips when using extension cords.

  • Determine the correct wattage required to power the device and be sure to select the correct size of the extension cord.  If connecting two or more devices, add together the wattage rating for all devices to prevent overload.
  • Select the appropriate extension cord for using devices indoor or outdoor.
  • Do not use extension cords that are cut or damaged. Touching the exposed strand of wire can give someone electric shock or burn.
  • Be sure to unplug extension cords when finished using due to the cord will still conduct electricity until it is unplugged.
  • Running a cord under carpet or across a doorway is unsafe.

If you have any questions regarding fire damage please call SERVPRO of Baldwin County at 251-928-9625

Preventing a Grill Fire

6/12/2019 (Permalink)

With summer just around the corner, grilling season will soon be in full swing.  While we look forward to the upcoming barbecue season, SERVPRO of Baldwin County would like to remind you to be safe and use precautions when cooking with your grill.  According to the National Fire Protection Association, an average of 9,600 home fires are started by grills every year.  In addition, over 16,000 people need medical care per year due to burns and other incidents involving grills. Here are some steps you can take to prevent a burn or potential fire in your own backyard.

  • Do not leave the grill unattended, and keep a spray bottle nearby in case of sudden flare-ups.
  • Remove excess fat from your meat since the extra fat can cause the flames to rise.
  • Clean your grill to remove all grease and fatty residue left behind from previous cookouts. Doing so will decrease the risk of a grease fire.
  • If you own a gas grill, inspect your propane tank for signs of damage that can cause serious fire damage.

By following these precautions, you can safely grill for your family and friends without risk of injury.  If you experience a fire at your home, call the fire restoration professionals at SERVPRO of Baldwin County.  We are happy to make any size fire disaster “Like it never even happened.”

When Thunder Roars, Go Indoors

6/12/2019 (Permalink)

It’s that time of the year. Summer comes with rain. Rain comes with thunder storms and lightning. Lightning is a leading cause of injury and death from weather-related hazards. Although most lightning victims survive, people struck by lightning often report a variety of long-term, debilitating symptoms. Thunderstorms are dangerous storms that include lightning and can:

  • Include powerful winds over 50 MPH;
  • Create hail; and
  • Cause flash flooding and tornadoes.

IF YOU ARE UNDER A THUNDERSTORM WARNING, FIND SAFE SHELTER RIGHT AWAY

  • When thunder roars, go indoors!
  • Move from outdoors into a building or car.
  • Pay attention to alerts and warnings.
  • Unplug appliances.
  • Do not use landline phones.

HOW TO STAY SAFE WHEN A THUNDERSTORM THREATENS

WHAT TO DO NOW: Prepare

  • Know your area’s risk for thunderstorms. In most places, they can occur year-round and at any hour.
  • Sign up for your community’s warning system. The Emergency Alert System (EAS) and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Weather Radio also provide emergency alerts.
  • Identify nearby, sturdy buildings close to where you live, work, study, and play.
  • Cut down or trim trees that may be in danger of falling on your home.
  • Consider buying surge protectors, lightning rods, or a lightning protection system to protect your home, appliances, and electronic devices.

We Have the Resources to Handle Storms and Disasters

Have Storm or Flood Damage?
Call SERVPRO of Baldwin County today at 251-928-9625

Pet Fire Safety Day

6/12/2019 (Permalink)

Approximately 500,000 pets are affected by fires every year, according to the United States Fire Administration. Promote the safety of the people and animals in your home in the event of a fire emergency by planning ahead. From preventative caution to making an evacuation plan that includes pet safety, here are three pet preparation steps you can take today.

It's important to keep animals away from open flames such as candles. Make sure your candles are in a secure location that cannot be knocked over. 

In the event of a fire, if your pets are not able to make it out of the house with you, let the responding firefighters know that. They will do everything they can to recover your animals from the home. 

Make sure you have all your pets records in a secure place so they can be accessed in the event of a fire. 

Pets are like family. Make sure they are apart of your fire evacuation plan. 

Why It's Important to Have Insurance

5/30/2019 (Permalink)

Insurance Awareness Day

National Insurance Awareness day is reserved for June 28th every year to remind property owners to review their insurance coverage. This review will ensure your coverage is up to date and covers the current operations of your business or residence.

Commercial Insurance

It is important to make sure your business is completely covered for any type of loss that could potentially happen.

Did you know 1 out of 5 entrepreneurs are unsure if they are covered against common small business risks like negligence? A group of small business owners were surveyed and only about half of these owners reported having Theft and Accidental Damage/Loss insurance.

This article has great information about important commercial insurance coverage you should consider.

Is your policy up to date?

Reviewing your insurance coverage might be low on your to-do list, but it is something that should be done annually or whenever there is a change to your needs.

Insurance protects your business in the event that anything happens to your property or employees. You may think you have all of the coverage you need, but you could be missing or overlooking something.

This year on National Insurance Awareness Day set some time aside to review your policies with your insurance agent and make sure you're fully protected.

Allergies Are No Fun!

5/22/2019 (Permalink)

Weather is getting warmer and spring is finally here! Spring cleaning is essential as weather warms because there are higher amounts of pollen in the air, contributing to your allergies.

Check out our tips to reduce the allergens that find their way into your home!

  • Vacuum frequently, and make sure to use a HEPA filter to trap and lock away allergens.
  • Throw out unnecessary clutter, so dust cannot hide.
  • Try wearing a mask while you clean, so you don’t breathe in the germs you want to get rid of!
  • Check water pipes for leaks and the potential for mold.
  • Don’t wash with fragrance detergents, as they may trigger your allergies.
  • Use your AC instead of opening your windows, to keep allergens out.

For Your Home's Deep Cleaning, Call SERVPRO of Baldwin County!

SERVPRO of Baldwin County specializes in the cleanup and restoration of commercial and residential property after damaging event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility for regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property. SERVPRO wants our team to be part of your team! Call us at 251-928-9625 

Our Step by Step Fire Damage Restoration Process

4/17/2019 (Permalink)

Every fire damage event is 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 us. Our representative will ask questions regarding the fire damage event that will help us respond immediately with the appropriate equipment and resources. 

Step 2: Inspection and Fire Damage Assessment

We 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. We 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

We use specialized equipment and techniques to remove smoke and soot from ceilings, walls, and other surfaces. 

Step 6: Cleaning and Sanitizing

We clean, sanitize, and disinfect all of the restorable items and structures that were damaged by the fire. We use a variety of cleaning techniques to restore your belongings to pre-fire condition. We’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.

Have Questions About Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage? Call Today 251-928-9625

Easter Events in Baldwin County 2019

4/11/2019 (Permalink)

Wales West Cottontail Express has been rolling since March 23 and concludes next weekend at Wales West Light Railway, 13670 Smiley St., Silverhill.

Every Saturday and Sunday, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., the Cottontail Express pulls out of our train station and makes its determined way across the awakening landscape of Baldwin County.

The experience also includes an Easter egg hunt, treats and refreshments, and a visit with the Easter Bunny.

Admission is free for ages 2 and under. For all others, the cost is $15 per person. Group rates are available. For more information call 251-232-2322; or go to waleswest.com to purchase tickets.

Marlow United Methodist Church will host its annual Easter Egg Hunt beginning at 10 a.m. Saturday, April 13 at the church, corner of County Road 9 and County Road 28.

All children in the community ages grade six and under are invited to come join us for some Easter fun.

Please bring your own basket. Light refreshments will be served. For more information call 251-988-8563.

Silverhill First Baptist Church will host its annual Community Easter Egg Hunt beginning at 1 p.m. Sunday, April 14 at Silverhill Heritage Kids Park, corner of South Avenue and First Street.

The event will include an age-divided egg hunt with prizes, inflatables, candy, hot dogs, chips and lemonade.

For more information visit the Silverhill First Baptist Church Facebook page.

Alabama 200 Bicentennial Pre-Easter Festival will be held from 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday, April 14 at Bicentennial Park, 51233 Alabama 225, Stockton.

The event includes pony rides, a historical Easter egg hunt, petting zoo, face painting, train rides and hay rides. The Easter Bunny will also be on hand to greet young visitors and for photo opportunities.

Admission is free. For more information contact the Baldwin County Department of Archives & History, 251-580-1897.

Easter Eggstravaganza, hosted by The Lighthouse of Baldwin County, will be held from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday, April 19 at Garrett Park in Robertsdale.

Join The Lighthouse in support of Sexual Assault Awareness Month in April. Activities include jump houses, pony rides, face-painting, free sno cones just for children and Easter egg hunts separated into age-appropriate zones. A kiddie pool is also available stuffed with Easter eggs for those 2 and under.

Egg hunt begins promptly at 11 a.m. For more information call 251-947-3414. For more information on this and other upcoming events visit The Lighthouse of Baldwin County’s page on Facebook.

Easter egg hunt, hosted by the Town of Loxley and coordinated by The Loxley Volunteer Fire Department Auxiliary and the Loxley Church of God, will be held from 10 a.m. to noon Saturday, April 20 at Loxley Municipal Park, 4198 Municipal Park Drive, off of Alabama 59.

The event will include several fun activities for children of all ages. For more information call the fire department, 251-964-6000, the church, 251-964-6604 or town hall, 251964-6444.

Town of Summerdale Easter Egg Hunt will be held beginning at 10 a.m. Saturday, April 20 at the Community Center Park, 300 W Jackson Ave. For more information call Town Hall at 251-989-6202.

The Miracle League of Coastal Alabama

4/10/2019 (Permalink)

The Gulf Shores and Orange Beach Lions Clubs are working together to build a park with a baseball field and playground facility designed to remove barriers that keep disabled residents off the field. The Miracle League fields will be located at 1545 Gulf Shores Parkway Box 159 in Gulf Shores, near Gulf State Park and Shelby Lake. The park will accommodate wheelchairs, walkers and other assistive devices while helping to prevent injuries. For many, it will be their first opportunity to play side-by side with family and friends in an atmosphere where everyone benefits. The main obstacles for these individuals come from playing on natural turf fields used in conventional youth baseball leagues.Their fully inclusive playground will be built with the same playing surface as the Miracle League field. The playground equipment will be designed for everyone regardless of mental or physical limitations.

Mission Statement

To enrich our special needs community by giving them the opportunity to play in a facility that is tailored to their specific needs while, at the same time, providing an environment that benefits everyone regardless of physical or mental limitations.

To donate please click here

Chamber of Commerce

4/4/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Baldwin County is a proud member of the South Baldwin Chamber of Commerce, which was established in 1944.  Their membership includes small businesses, corporations, associations, professionals as well as associate members who believe in the work of the Chamber of Commerce.  The Chamber office is located in the heart of South Baldwin County: 112 W Laurel Ave, Foley, AL 36535, which serves as a gateway to many beautiful destinations throughout our area.  They serve the communities of Bon Secour, Elberta, Foley, Josephine, Lillian, Magnolia Springs, Perdido Beach, Summerdale and Wolf Bay.The South Baldwin Chamber has always been, and currently remains, an advocate for businesses in the region. Their mission is to build and promote a better community, speak with a unified voice for business, be a part of well-functioning business networks and support the free market system.  The South Baldwin Chamber of Commerce produces four major events in our local area each year. Those events are the Chamber Golf Classic in March, the Gulf Coast Hot Air Balloon Festival and Balloon Fest 10k/5k held in May, and the Festival of Flavor held in October. The four events are held annually to promote awareness of our local area to both our local community and visitors. To learn more click here

IICRC Applied Microbial Growth Remediation Technician

4/1/2019 (Permalink)

Our team members just returned from SERVPRO Industries in Gallatin, TN where they had the opportunity to obtain their IICRC AMRT certification. 

The IICRC is the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification.

What is the purpose of the IICRC?

The Mission of the IICRC is to establish and advance globally recognized standards and certifications for the inspection, cleaning, restoration and installation industries. (source)

The IICRC serves as an independent, certification body, that sets and promotes high standards and ethics, and advances communication and technical proficiency within the inspection, cleaning and restoration industries. The IICRC also ensures that when consumers hire a Certified Firm or technician, they have hired experts who will provide reasonable assurance that work will be completed in accordance with the industry’s “standard of care.” (source)

Applied Microbial Growth Remediation Technician (AMRT)

Applied Microbial Growth Remediation Technician is just one of the many certifications offered by the IICRC. The IICRC is an organizational body that sets the standards for the Cleaning and Restoration community. The AMRT course teaches course takers the content in the ANSI/IICRC's S520 (Standard for Professional Mold Remediation) with both academic and hands-on lessons set up to emulate actual mold remediation projects. 

From their website (source):

"The ANSI/IICRC S520 is a procedural standard and reference guide for the remediation of mold damaged structures and contents. The ANSI/IICRC S520 is based on reliable remediation and restoration principles, research and practical experience and attempts to combine essential academic principles with practical elements of water damage restoration for technicians facing “real-life” mold remediation challenges. The S520 and R520 are written for use by those involved in the mold remediation industry, and is the result of collaboration among microbiologists and other scientists, public health professionals, industrial hygienists, remediation contractors, restoration service companies, cleaning and restoration training schools and trade associations that service the professional restoration industry, allied trade-persons and others with related professional and practical experience."

Trained Professionals at SERVPRO of Baldwin County

From on the job training to IICRC certifications and training at our Corporate headquarters, SERVPRO of Baldwin County's trained professionals utilize the latest techniques and technology on every job. If you experience a microbial growth or mold problem, contact SERVPRO of Baldwin County today!

251-928-9625

251-943-6244

office@SERVPRObaldwincounty.com

Prepare for 2019 Hurricane Season

4/1/2019 (Permalink)

There were 15 named storms, eight hurricanes and two major hurricanes in 2018.

The Atlantic hurricane season officially runs from June 1 to Nov. 30.

The 2018 Atlantic hurricane season will officially go in the books as being a bit “above normal.”

Of course, if a hurricane hit where you live, it was far from an average year. Just ask the folks in the Florida panhandle and the Carolinas. With its 15 named storms, eight hurricanes and two major hurricanes, 2018 matched the early predictions from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, or NOAA.

The agency forecast 10 to 16 named storms, including five to nine hurricanes, and one to four major hurricanes with Category 3 strength or higher, back in May before the season started.

An average six-month Atlantic season typically produces 12 named storms, of which six become hurricanes. including three major hurricanes. The 2018 season was defined by two powerful storms that formed in its second half - Hurricanes Florence and Michael.

Florence got its start on Sept. 1 as a tropical storm that formed just off the coast of West Africa.On its nearly two-week trek across the Atlantic, Florence strengthened to a Category 4 storm before making landfall near Wrightsville Beach, NC, as a Category 1 hurricane with maximum sustained winds of 90 mph.The rain from the system soaked the region, dumping nearly 40 inches of rain in Elizabethtown, NC, causing widespread flooding that took weeks to recede.At least 55 deaths were attributed to the storm. Property damage and economic losses in North and South Carolina approached $18 billion.

Hurricane Michael took a different path, forming Oct. 7 near the Yucatan Peninsula, where the Caribbean and Gulf of Mexico meet.Four days later, Michael made landfall as a Category 4 hurricane in the Florida Panhandle. The storm’s 155 mph winds made Michael the strongest storm to hit the continental U.S. since Hurricane Andrew in 1992. More than one million people, across four states, were left without power due to Michael.

The storm killed at least 43 people in Florida and 10 more in Georgia, North Carolina and Virginia. Of those, 21 were in Florida’s Bay County, where the hurricane made landfall, nearly wiping out Mexico Beach. Michael caused more than $14 billion in damages.

http://www.wsfa.com/2018/11/29/atlantic-hurricane-season-year-florence-michael/

How can you be prepared?

Speak with your insurance agent regarding your coverage. Flood insurance and Hurricane/Wind insurance may not be included in your Homeowners policy. 

Speak with your insurance agent regarding what amount will allow you the ability to rebuild your home. A lower premium is not always best if it does not cover the costs to rebuild. It's important to have enough coverage!

Review your policies before Hurricane season (reminder: it starts June 1st!) with your insurance agent. There is a 30-day waiting period before flood insurance goes into effect. Some  times, insurers will not adjust your coverage after a storm is forecast. 

See this post for information on how you can prepare your family in case of evacuation due to flooding.

SERVPRO Teams Up with American Red Cross!

3/28/2019 (Permalink)

We’re thrilled to be partnered with the American Red Cross as a Disaster Responder. Here at SERVPRO of Baldwin County, we’re always “Ready for Whatever Happens” and we want you to be too! You never know when a disaster may strike, so it is important to have an emergency preparedness kit ready to go at a moment’s notice.

According to our friends at the American Red Cross, you should, at minimum, have the basic supplies listed below:

  • Water: one gallon per person, per day (3-day supply for evacuation, 2-week supply for home)
  • Food: non-perishable, easy-to-prepare items (3-day supply for evacuation, 2-week supply for home).
  • Flashlight
  • Battery powered or hand-crank radio (NOAA Weather Radio, if possible)
  • Extra batteries
  • First aid kit
  • Medications (7-day supply) and medical items
  • Multi-purpose tool
  • Sanitation and personal hygiene items
  • Copies of personal documents (medication list and pertinent medical information, proof of address, deed/lease to home, passports, birth certificates, insurance policies)
  • Cell phone with chargers
  • Family and emergency contact information
  • Extra cash
  • Emergency blanket
  • Maps of the area

You should also consider the needs of all family members and add supplies to your kit as needed. Suggested items to help meet additional needs are:

  • Medical supplies (hearing aids with extra batteries, glasses, contact lenses, syringes, etc)
  • Baby supplies (bottles, formula, baby food, diapers)
  • Games and activities for children
  • Pet supplies (collar, leash, ID, food, carrier, bowl)
  • Two-way radios
  • Extra set of car keys and house keys
  • Manual can opener

Additional supplies to consider keeping at your home or in your emergency supply kit:

  • Whistle
  • N95 or surgical masks
  • Matches
  • Rain gear
  • Towels
  • Work gloves
  • Tools/supplies for securing your home
  • Extra clothing, hat and sturdy shoes
  • Plastic sheeting
  • Duct tape
  • Scissors
  • Household liquid bleach
  • Entertainment items
  • Blankets or sleeping bags

You never know when a disaster might arise.

Keep your Emergency Kit somewhere easily accessible for if and when the time comes that you need it. You should also practice fire drills with your family and plan out multiple evacuation routes should you ever need to evacuate your home.

Make sure that everyone knows what to do in case of emergency. Whether it’s the Big One, a house fire, or an unexpected storm, we want you to be “ready for whatever happens!”

Benefits of a National Brand

3/8/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO is the only mitigation company with national advertising. You know us and trust us. Effective results are the results of consistent training and execution.

Since 1967, SERVPRO Industries, Inc. has been redefining and improving the mitigation and restoration industries. In 1992, the SERVPRO National Training Center was developed specifically to teach restoration and mitigations skills to insurance industry employees, as well as Franchise owners. SERVPRO has been a state –approved Continuing Education Course Location and an IICRC-approved school since 1997. In May of 2005, SERVPRO moved to a new corporate location with an innovative and much larger Training Center.

SERVPRO Industries, Inc. is one of nine organizations qualified to offer the Applied Structural Drying course. The Applied Structural Drying course covers the effective, efficient, and timely drying of water-damaged structures and contents, using comprehensive classroom and hands-on training, in order to facilitate appropriate decision-making within a restorative drying environment. Students will experience live, hands-on use of instruments, extraction systems, drying equipment, and chemistry use in an actual flooded building situation.

SERVPRO of Baldwin County Provide Solutions to your Water Damage Needs

3/8/2019 (Permalink)

Water Damage Cleanup & Restoration

The Process:

  • Our uniformed team of professionals will arrive on-site usually within four hours of notification to begin providing a resolution to the water damage situation.
  • Technicians communicate their assessment with the property manager or owner in detail before beginning the cleanup and restoration process
  • Our Baldwin County team utilizes industry guidelines, knowledge, training and industrial equipment to examine the extent of the damage.
  • Restoration services include moisture detection, water extraction, humidification and contents inventory.
  • Closing the event work order in a timely manner through electronic claims reporting,consistent communication and professional restoration techniques.
  • SERVPRO of Baldwin County available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

If you need water damage cleanup and restoration, call SERVPRO of Baldwin County at 251-928-9625!

Commercial Water Damage Restoration Facts

2/27/2019 (Permalink)

In the restoration industry, there is more than meets the eye when it comes to water and the havoc it can wreak.  

Water Restoration Facts

  • A sheet of drywall standing upright in 1/2" of water can absorb as much as 6 inches in less than 3 hours.
  • Water is known as a "universal solvent" because it dissolves more substances than any other liquid.
  • Mold typically begins to grow within 24 to 48 hours in an untreated, moist environment.
  • A puddle of water around a water heater indicates a slow leak, or rusted or corroded fittings.  Act quickly as water heaters are under a great deal of water pressure.

Water Contamination Categories in the Restoration Industry

  • Category One-Water from a clean source that poses no risk of sickness or discomfort such as from an overflowing bathtub or from a broken water supply pipe.
  • Category Two-Water that has a significant degree of chemical, biological and/or physical contamination such as water from a dishwasher or washer, or aquarium leak or discharged Category One water that sits untreated for more than 24 hours becomes a Category Two.
  • Category Three- Water coming from a grossly unsanitary source or carrying disease causing agents such as releases from septic systems and flood waters or discharged Category One water that sits for more than 48 hours becomes Category Three, or discharged Category Two water that sits for more than 24 hours becomes Category Three.

The use of chemical agents that act as biocides may be used when there is a need to control or destroy pathogenic microorganisms during a restoration project.  The EPA defines three levels of biocidal activity:

  • Sanitizers which are designed to reduce the number of microorganisms
  • Disinfectants which are designed to destroy or inhibit the growth, but not necessarily  the spores.
  • Sterilizers which are designed to destroy all microorganisms and their spores, such as mold, bacteria, viruses, etc.

Have commercial water damage questions? Call 251-928-9625

You Can Trust SERVPRO!

2/27/2019 (Permalink)

Serving America Since 1967

SERVPRO® Franchise Professionals have been helping home and business owners recover from fire damages across the United States.

Over 1,600 Franchises Nationwide

More locations means faster response. A SERVPRO® Franchise Professional can usually be on-site within four hours to help protect the structure, business and personal property.

SERVPRO® National Call Center Served 313 Insurance and Property Management Companies and Their Clients Nationwide in the Last Year Alone.

We have earned the trust of the insurance industry by serving thousands of their policy holders and clients with respect and integrity. The more we restore, the less that needs to be replaced. This helps our clients save millions of dollars each year. That helps lower your insurance rates too!

24-Hour Emergency Service

 In our business, you need us fast! The sooner we arrive, the better the chance we can reduce damage and save money. Franchise Professionals are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year.

Trained, Uniformed Franchise Professionals

A trained, uniformed and equipped SERVPRO® Franchise Professional will walk you through the job process and then work quickly to restore your property to preloss condition whenever possible.

References

From large commercial environments to small residential losses, SERVPRO® Franchise Professionals understand your loss is the job that matters most! We will be happy to provide references so you can feel confident that SERVPRO® is the best system to service your needs.

SERVPRO of Baldwin County Put Property Owners Back in Control.

2/27/2019 (Permalink)

Our number one goal is returning damaged areas and items to preloss condition, doing all we can to make it “Like it never even happened.” SERVPRO of Baldwin County is dedicated to restoring both the property and the lives of the customers being helped. Like it was never dirty, like it never overflowed, like it never caught fire, like it never spilled, like it never smoldered–whatever the case, with SERVPRO® our goal is to make it “Like it never even happened.”

SERVPRO® Franchise System A History of Trust and Professionalism.

2/27/2019 (Permalink)

“To develop a team of quality people who focus on excellent service, fairness and mutual respect.” - SERVPRO® Mission Statement

Founded in 1967, the SERVPRO Industries, Inc. Franchise System is a national leader of fire, water, mold and other specialty cleanup and restoration services. SERVPRO's professional network of more than 1,500 Franchises has responded to property damage emergencies ranging from multi-million dollar disasters such as the Pentagon, to those suffered by individual businesses and homes. Providing coverage nationally, SERVPRO® Franchise Professionals have established relationships with major insurance companies and commercial clients nationwide

Following tremendous growth in the late 1990’s, Entrepreneur Magazine ranked SERVPRO® the #1 Franchisor in the restoration industry in 2004, 2005, 2006 and 2007. In fact, SERVPRO® was ranked #25 among all franchise companies of any type in 2007. In April 2005, SERVPRO® moved to a new 140,000 square foot facility in Gallatin, TN. The state-ofthe-art building houses a newly designed training facility and National Call Center.

The SERVPRO Difference

2/27/2019 (Permalink)

Our Baldwin County Team works hard to make it look "Like it never even happened."

The People, Experience, Training and Equipment to make it Like it never even happened.

The People

With over 10,000 quality teammates nationwide, SERVPRO® Franchise Professionals are available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year to help you get your life back.

The Experience

SERVPRO® is a Franchise System with over 40 years of leadership in fire and water cleanup and restoration. Our track record of results has earned us the trust of the insurance industry, countless homeowners, commercial property managers and in one unforgettable instance, even the Pentagon.

The Training

Franchise Professionals undergo extensive fire restoration training and certification. SERVPRO Industries, Inc. offers IICRC-Approved school to help ensure our training meets and exceeds accepted industry standards.

The Equipment

With over 5,000,000 square feet of building space, housing over 140,000 pieces of cleaning and restoration equipment, SERVPRO® Franchise Professionals have the resources to help you take back control of your life.

Track record

With each saved home, with each reopened business and with each satisfied insurance client, SERVPRO's track record of excellence continues to grow.

Support

From the SERVPRO National Call Center to our Large Loss and Storm Response Teams, SERVPRO's corporate infrastructure provides the support to help put your property on the road to recovery.

Emergency Fire Damage Process Overview

2/27/2019 (Permalink)

ONE HOUR: 

Within one hour from notice of loss, a SERVPRO® Franchise Professional will contact you to arrange for service. You’ll know help is on the way!

FOUR HOURS:

Within four hours of loss notification, a SERVPRO® Franchise Professional will be on-site to start mitigation services. The key to reducing damage and saving money is responding quickly to your damage.

DETAILED EXPLANATION:

A trained, uniformed and equipped SERVPRO® Franchise Professional will walk you through the job process step-by-step, explaining what to expect and the anticipated outcome. EIGHT HOURS: Within eight business hours of on-site arrival, a verbal briefing of the scope will be communicated to the appropriate person, normally your adjuster or property manager.

PRETESTING:

A SERVPRO® Franchise Professional will begin pretesting for restorability, working from the source of the damage outward.

EIGHT HOURS:

Within eight business hours of on-site arrival, a verbal briefing of the scope will be communicated to the appropriate person, normally the adjuster or property manager.

CLEANING, RESTORATION & DEODORIZATION:

SERVPRO® Franchise Professionals will work neatly and efficiently to help you regain control of your property when a damaging event has taken over. They will use state-of-the-art restoration techniques to ensure your property is taken care of right the first time.

FINAL WALK-THROUGH:

After the work has been completed, a final walk-through will be conducted with you to help ensure your satisfaction.

Floods

2/26/2019 (Permalink)

Floods

Failing to evacuate flooded areas, entering flood waters, or remaining after a flood has passed can result in injury or death. Flooding is a temporary overflow of water onto land that is normally dry. Floods are the most common natural disaster in the United States. Floods may:

  • Result from rain, snow, coastal storms, storm surges, and overflows of dams and other water systems.

  • Develop slowly or quickly – Flash floods can come with no warning.

  • Cause outages, disrupt transportation, damage buildings, and create landslides.

 IF YOU ARE UNDER A FLOOD WARNING, FIND SAFE SHELTER RIGHT AWAY

  • Do not walk, swim, or drive through flood waters. Turn Around, Don’t Drown!

         (Just six inches of moving water can knock you down, and one foot of moving water can sweep your vehicle away.)

  • Stay off of bridges over fast-moving water.

  • Determine how best to protect yourself based on the type of flooding.

    • Evacuate if told to do so.

    • Move to higher ground or a higher floor.

    • Stay where you are.

HOW TO STAY SAFE WHEN A FLOOD THREATENS

Prepare NOW

  • Know types of flood risk in your area. Visit FEMA’s Flood Map Service Center for information.

  • Sign up for your community’s warning system. The Emergency Alert System (EAS) and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Weather Radio also provide emergency alerts.

  • If flash flooding is a risk in your location, then monitor potential signs, such as heavy rain.

  • Learn and practice evacuation routes, shelter plans, and flash flood response.

  • Gather supplies in case you have to leave immediately, or if services are cut off. Keep in mind each person’s specific needs, including medication. Don’t forget the needs of pets. Obtain extra batteries and charging devices for phones and other critical equipment.

  • Purchase or renew a flood insurance policy. It typically takes up to 30 days for a policy to go into effect and can protect the life you've built. Homeowner’s policies do not cover flooding. Get flood coverage under the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP)

  • Keep important documents in a waterproof container. Create password-protected digital copies.

  • Protect your property. Move valuables to higher levels. Declutter drains and gutters. Install check valves. Consider a sump pump with a battery.

    https://www.ready.gov/floods

Thunderstorms & Lightning

2/26/2019 (Permalink)

Lightning is a leading cause of injury and death from weather-related hazards. Although most lightning victims survive, people struck by lightning often report a variety of long-term, debilitating symptoms. Thunderstorms are dangerous storms that include lightning and can:

  • Include powerful winds over 50 MPH;

  • Create hail; and

  • Cause flash flooding and tornadoes.

IF YOU ARE UNDER A THUNDERSTORM WARNING, FIND SAFE SHELTER RIGHT AWAY

  • When thunder roars, go indoors!

  • Move from outdoors into a building or car.

  • Pay attention to alerts and warnings.

  • Unplug appliances.

  • Do not use landline phones.

HOW TO STAY SAFE WHEN A THUNDERSTORM THREATENS

Prepare NOW

  • Know your area’s risk for thunderstorms. In most places, they can occur year-round and at any hour.

  • Sign up for your community’s warning system. The Emergency Alert System (EAS) and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Weather Radio also provide emergency alerts.

  • Identify nearby, sturdy buildings close to where you live, work, study, and play.

  • Cut down or trim trees that may be in danger of falling on your home.

  • Consider buying surge protectors, lightning rods, or a lightning protection system to protect your home, appliances, and electronic devices.

    https://www.ready.gov/thunderstorms-lightning

Tornado Safety Tips

2/26/2019 (Permalink)

Tornadoes

Tornadoes are violent: they can completely destroy well-made structures, uproot trees and hurl objects through the air like deadly missiles. Although severe tornadoes are most common in the Plains States, they can happen anywhere. Learn what to do to keep your loved ones safe.

Top Tips

  • Identify a safe place in your home where household members and pets will gather during a tornado: a basement, storm cellar or an interior room on the lowest floor with no windows.
  • In a high-rise building, pick a hallway in the center of the building. You may not have enough time to go to the lowest floor. 
  • In a mobile home, choose a safe place in a nearby sturdy building. If your mobile home park has a designated shelter, make it your safe place. No mobile home, however it is configured, is safe in a tornado.

Know the difference!

A tornado WATCH means a tornado is possible. A tornado WARNING means a tornado is already occurring or will occur soon. GO TO YOUR SAFE PLACE IMMEDIATELY.

https://www.redcross.org/get-help/how-to-prepare-for-emergencies/types-of-emergencies/tornado.html

Floods: During and After

2/26/2019 (Permalink)

Survive DURING

  • Depending on where you are, and the impact and the warning time of flooding, go to the safe location that you previously identified.
  • If told to evacuate, do so immediately. Never drive around barricades. Local responders use them to safely direct traffic out of flooded areas.
  • Listen to EAS, NOAA Weather Radio, or local alerting systems for current emergency information and instructions.
  • Do not walk, swim, or drive through flood waters. Turn Around. Don’t Drown!
  • Stay off bridges over fast-moving water. Fast-moving water can wash bridges away without warning.
  • If your vehicle is trapped in rapidly moving water, then stay inside. If water is rising inside the vehicle, then seek refuge on the roof.
  • If trapped in a building, then go to its highest level. Do not climb into a closed attic. You may become trapped by rising floodwater. Go on the roof only if necessary. Once there, signal for help.

Be Safe AFTER

  • Listen to authorities for information and instructions. Return home only when authorities say it is safe.
  • Avoid driving, except in emergencies.
  • Snakes and other animals may be in your house. Wear heavy gloves and boots during clean up.
  • Be aware of the risk of electrocution. Do not touch electrical equipment if it is wet or if you are standing in water. If it is safe to do so, turn off the electricity to prevent electric shock.
  • Avoid wading in floodwater, which can contain dangerous debris and be contaminated. Underground or downed power lines can also electrically charge the water.
  • Use a generator or other gasoline-powered machinery ONLY outdoors and away from windows.

https://www.ready.gov/floods

Mold: What to Know

2/26/2019 (Permalink)

Ten Things You Should Know about Mold

  1. Potential health effects and symptoms associated with mold exposures include allergic reactions, asthma and other respiratory complaints.
  2. There is no practical way to eliminate all mold and mold spores in the indoor environment; the way to control indoor mold growth is to control moisture.
  3. If mold is a problem in your home or school, you must clean up the mold and eliminate sources of moisture.
  4. Fix the source of the water problem or leak to prevent mold growth.
  5. Reduce indoor humidity (to 30-60%) to decrease mold growth by:
    • Venting bathrooms, dryers and other moisture-generating sources to the outside
    • Using air conditioners and de-humidifiers
    • Increasing ventilation
    • Using exhaust fans whenever cooking, dishwashing and cleaning
  6. Clean and dry any damp or wet building materials and furnishings within 24-48 hours to prevent mold growth.
  7. Clean mold off hard surfaces with water and detergent, and dry completely. Absorbent materials such as ceiling tiles, that are moldy, may need to be replaced.
  8. Prevent condensation: Reduce the potential for condensation on cold surfaces (i.e., windows, piping, exterior walls, roof, or floors) by adding insulation.
  9. In areas where there is a perpetual moisture problem, do not install carpeting (i.e., by drinking fountains, by classroom sinks, or on concrete floors with leaks or frequent condensation).
  10. Molds can be found almost anywhere; they can grow on virtually any substance, providing moisture is present. There are molds that can grow on wood, paper, carpet, and foods.

https://www.epa.gov/mold/ten-things-you-should-know-about-mold

Mold Remediation in Schools and Commercial Buildings

2/26/2019 (Permalink)

Mold: Commercial Buildings & Schools

Concern about indoor exposure to mold has been increasing as the public becomes aware that exposure to mold can cause a variety of health effects and symptoms. Here is some information for the remediation/cleanup of mold and moisture problems in schools and commercial buildings.

 Did You Know?

Molds can be found almost anywhere; they can grow on virtually any organic substance, as long as moisture and oxygen are present. There are molds that can grow on wood, paper, carpet, foods, and insulation. When excessive moisture accumulates in buildings or on building materials, mold growth will often occur, particularly if the moisture problem remains undiscovered or unaddressed. It is impossible to eliminate all mold and mold spores in the indoor environment. However, mold growth can be controlled indoors by controlling moisture indoors.

Molds reproduce by making spores that usually cannot be seen without magnification. Mold spores waft through the indoor and outdoor air continually. When mold spores land on a damp spot indoors, they may begin growing and digesting whatever they are growing on in order to survive. Molds gradually destroy the things they grow on, and can cause health effects.

Mold in Commercial Buildings

Since mold requires water to grow, it is important to prevent moisture problems in buildings. Moisture problems can have many causes, including uncontrolled humidity. Some moisture problems in buildings have been linked to changes in building construction practices during the 1970s, 80s and 90s. Some of these changes have resulted in buildings that are tightly sealed, but may lack adequate ventilation, potentially leading to moisture buildup. Building materials, such as drywall, may not allow moisture to escape easily. Moisture problems may include:

  • Roof leaks
  • Landscaping or gutters that direct water into or under the building
  • Unvented combustion appliances
  • Delayed maintenance or insufficient maintenance are also associated with moisture problems in schools and large buildings

Moisture problems in portable classrooms and other temporary structures have frequently been associated with mold problems. For more information see IAQ Design Tools for Schools - Portable Classrooms.

When mold growth occurs in buildings, adverse health problems may be reported by some building occupants. Remediators should avoid exposing themselves and others to mold-laden dusts as they conduct their cleanup activities. Caution should be used to prevent mold and mold spores from being dispersed throughout the air where they can be inhaled by building occupants.

https://www.epa.gov/mold/mold-remediation-schools-and-commercial-buildings-guide

If you are in need of Mold Remediation in your commercial building, SERVPRO of Baldwin County will be happy to help make it look “Like it never even happened." Call us today at 251-928-9625

The Fairhope Arts & Crafts Festival

2/26/2019 (Permalink)

The Fairhope Arts & Crafts Festival

SERVPRO of Baldwin County is proud to support community events throughout the area. The 67th Annual Fairhope Art and Crafts Festival is scheduled for March 15, 16, and 17 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The festival will be held downtown Fairhope near Section Street and Fairhope Ave. The juried show showcases artists from all over the county, including local artist from Fairhope, Daphne, Spanish Fort, and all over Baldwin County. Enjoy live entertainment, exquisite cuisine, and fine art throughout this three-day event. Fairhope Arts and Craft Festival has something for everyone, making it an Eastern Shore staple for more the sixty years. Come out and enjoy the arts on the beautiful streets of Fairhope!

Fire & Smoke Damage: What to Do

2/20/2019 (Permalink)

This photo was taken prior to work beginning at a home in Gulf Shores, AL. The fire was caused by an issue with the house's electrical wiring.

Do

  • Limit movement in the home to prevent soot particles from being embedded into upholstery and carpet.
  • Keep hands clean. Soot on hands can further soil upholstery, walls and woodwork.
  • Place dry, colorfast towels or old linens on rugs, upholstery and high traffic areas.
  • If electricity is off, empty freezer and refrigerator completely and prop doors open to help prevent odor.
  • Wipe soot from chrome on kitchen and bathroom faucets, trim and appliances, then protect these surfaces with a light coating of lubricant.
  • If heat is off during winter, poor RV antifreeze in sinks, toilet bowls, holding tanks and tubs to avoid freezing pipes and fixtures.
  • Wash both sides of leaves on house plants.
  • Change HVAC filter, but leave system off until a trained professional can check the system. 
  • Tape double layers of cheesecloth over air registers top stop particles of soot from getting in or out of the HVAC system.

Fire & Smoke Damage: What not to Do

2/20/2019 (Permalink)

Don't

  • Attempt to wash any walls or painted surfaces without first contacting your SERVPRO Professional.
  • Attempt to shampoo carpet or upholstered furniture without first consulting your SERVPRO Professional.
  • Attempt to clean any electrical appliances (TV sets, radios, etc.) that may have been close to fire, heat or water without first consulting an authorized repair service technician.
  • Turn on your HVAC system for heating or cooling the structure. Smoke can travel through your ductwork and create secondary damage.
  • Consume any food or beverages that may have been stored close to fire, heat or water. (They may be contaminated.)
  • Turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet. Wiring may be wet or damaged and cause electrical shock, and air movement may create secondary damage.
  • Send garments to the dry cleaner. Improper cleaning may set in smoke odor.

A Small Leak Could Be A Big Problem

2/20/2019 (Permalink)

There’s no such thing as a small disaster. Even a small water leak has the potential to blossom into a big problem later. The key to avoiding a loss is to take care of every water problem as soon as it’s discovered. Unseen water can soak through walls, seep through carpet and pool on sub floors causing major problems over time. SERVPRO of Baldwin County has the equipment, training, and experience to fix all your water damage needs. We can safely clean and restore homes utilizing the following procedures:

  • Identify the Source/ Type of Water
  • Measure Temperature and Humidity for Drying Analysis
  • Survey the Extent of Damage and Inspect the Premises For Hidden Moisture 
  • Perform Emergency Water Extractions 
  • Move and Block Furniture & Contents
  • Inspect Carpet Pad/Carpet and Provide Service
  • Apply Necessary Treatments (Disinfectants/ Deodorization)
  • Utilize Advanced Drying and Monitoring Equipment
  • Dispose of Reuse

Our team will work efficiently to find and dry unseen water before secondary damages set in. To help small leaks from becoming big problems, call us at 251-928-9625!

Mold: From the Ordinary to the Unhealthy (Part 1)

2/20/2019 (Permalink)

An example of healthy fungi: Edible Mushrooms!

Fungi and mold naturally occur in our environment, and are even present in some of our food. In fact, there are over 100,000 kinds of fungi that have been identified. While most people consider fungi to be bad, not all types are unhealthy.

Fungi produce some very useful results. Yeast is a type of fungi used in preparing breads, baked goods, and some alcoholic beverages. Foods like blue cheese get their unique flavor as a result of mold, and an edible mushroom is simply a type of fungi! Even products like lifesaving penicillin are a product of mold.

Even though some forms of mold can add value to our lives, other forms can be harmful. Excessive amounts of mold, different types of mold, and exposure to molds may present health concerns for some people. If you are unsure of what type of mold you are dealing with, SERVPRO of Baldwin County can help!

Mold: From the Ordinary to the Unhealthy (part 2)

2/20/2019 (Permalink)

Unhealthy mold inside a house can cause a health threat!

Unhealthy Mold and Fungi

No matter how big or small, an intrusion of water into your home can result in mold growth. Water damage can result from storm damage, plumbing or equipment failures, long-standing leaks, and poor humidity control. When water intrusions are not fixed immediately, the sitting water can present increased risk of harmful mold growth. If the humidity and moisture levels in a water-damaged environment aren’t quickly 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. It is important to know that excessive mold growth can lead to indoor environmental conditions that can pose a health threat. Whether you discover damage in your permanent home, beach condo, or office SERVPRO of Baldwin County has all the training, equipment, and knowledge to make it look "Like it never even happened.”

2019 Valentine's Day

2/14/2019 (Permalink)

Still need plans for Valentine’s Day? Want to enjoy a delicious, entertaining dinner overlooking the Mobile Bay?  Celebrate in Fairhope over dinner at The Grand Hotel Golf Resort & Spa Saturday, February 16, 2019. Appetizers and cash bar with wine list will be available at 6:30, followed by dinner at 7:00. A live romantic comedy, “The Night After”, will also be presented by The Detectives Mystery Dinner Theatre during the meal. Tickets are $79.50 for this unique Valentine ’s Day experience.

Baldwin County

2/14/2019 (Permalink)

Did you know that Baldwin County is the largest county by area in Alabama? Located between the two rainiest cities, Mobile and Pensacola, Baldwin County gets their fair share of rain throughout all 14 cities. Being on the Eastern side of Mobile Bay and joined by the Spanish River to Mobile County, we know water! From flooding, hurricanes, or leaking pipes, SERVPRO of Baldwin County is here to help with all your water damage needs. Our highly trained team has the experience, equipment, and knowledge to make it “Like it never even happened.” We are quick to respond to losses, and make sure to walk clients through the process. From start to finish, we make sure the process is quick and easy for the homeowner. If you have water damage in your home, call us at 251-928-9625!

Water Damage in Orange Beach Condominiums

2/14/2019 (Permalink)

On December 27th 2018 we received a call about water damage affecting several condominium units in Orange Beach, Alabama. After investigating further, it was determined that the cause of loss was from an ice maker filter leak in a unit above the affected units. Our SERVPRO team came in immediately to start mitigation services to ensure a fast clean up and no further damage to the property. We started by extracting water and placing dehumidifiers throughout units. Botanical antimicrobial products were then applied throughout affected areas. On December 29th all affected materials were responding well to the drying process, and by the 31st all materials reached goal. Whether you have water damage in your home or condo, SERVPRO of Baldwin County makes it “Like it never even happened!”

Clean Homes Sell Faster

2/14/2019 (Permalink)

Looking to sell your home? SERVPRO of Baldwin County can help revive your home to top show conditions. It is a fact that a clean fresh smelling home sells faster. Unfortunately not all homes are maintained the same way, and nearly all realtors are faced with a difficult listing to sell. Realtors encourage clients to keep their homes in top conditions because it increases market value, reduces list to sale conversion time, and enhances reputation for quality listings and quick sales. Whether the problem is stained carpet or offensive smell in a room, SERVPRO of Baldwin County can help get homes in top condition with a variety of services:

  • Carpet, upholstery, Drapery and Blind Cleaning
  • Ceiling, Wall and Hard Floor Cleaning
  • Deodorization
  • Duct & HVAC Cleaning
  • Mold Mitigation and Remediation

Get it Clean, Get it Sold

2/14/2019 (Permalink)

Dirty ducts can cause a variety of issues that some home owners may not even realize. When selling your home, it is important to take care of these issues in order to sell your listing efficiently. It is a fact that a clean problem free home sells faster. Dirty ducts can circulate odors and contaminants like mold and irritating dust throughout a home. SERVPRO of Baldwin County uses a portable Ventilation & Air Duct Cleaning System to examine ductwork and make a clean sweep, removing years of dust and grime. Duct and HVAC System Cleaning can reduce allergens and pet dander, eliminate offensive odors, and improve all over operating conditions and efficiency. Clean ducts means clean air! If you are looking to improve your homes market value and reduce list to sale conversion time, SERVPRO of Baldwin County can help get your home ready. Call us today!

Increase Property Appeal and Retain Home Value

2/14/2019 (Permalink)

When selling a home, it is important to clean up any existing indoor mold growth to increase property appeal and retain its value. If a property has experienced a water intrusion, you may be dealing with mold without even realizing it. Molds are found in every environment, and mold spores reproduce rapidly when moisture is present. The EPA advised that the potential health concerns from molds are an important reason to prevent moisture problems leading to mold growth. If a property has experienced a water intrusion, SERVPRO of Baldwin County can inspect the damage to see whether moisture has penetrated materials or is allowing mold growth.

If you want to increase property appeal and retain home value, Call us today at 251-928-9625. We're always here to help!

Mardi Gras Parades in Baldwin County!

2/13/2019 (Permalink)

It’s not a secret that Mardi Gras is a big holiday in the Baldwin county area. If you want to be a part of the fun, make sure to mark these parades on your calendar!

  • Friday, February 22 2019 6:45pm - Apollo's Mystic Ladies – Daphne (According to the Daphne Public Works Department, Main Street will be closed at about 5pm as the parade assembles in the Civic Center parking lot for the AML Parade)
  • Saturday, February 23 2019, 1pm - The Haven's Mystic Mutt's - Fairhope
  • Saturday, February 23 2019 6:45pm - Knights of Ecor Rouge (KOER) – Fairhope
  • Friday, March 1 2019 6:30pm - Mystical Order of Miriams - Orange Beach
  • Friday, March 1 2019 6:45pm - Maids of Jubilee - Fairhope
  • Saturday, March 2 2019 11am - Foley Parade - Foley
  • Saturday, March 2, 2019 12pm - Mystic Revelers - Bay Minette
  • Saturday March 2 2019 2pm - Krewe of Mullet Mates - Mullet Point
  • Saturday, March 2 2019 5:30pm - Mystics of Pleasure - Orange Beach
  • Saturday, March 2 2019 6:45pm - Shadow Barons – Daphne (According to the Daphne Public                Works Department, Main Street will be closed at about 5pm as the parade assembles in the Civic Center parking lot for the Shadow Barons Parade)
  • Sunday, March 3 2019 2:29pm - Loyal Order of the Fire Truck - Daphne
  • Lundi Gras - Monday, March 4, 2019 6:45pm - Order of Mystic Magnolias - Fairhope
  • Fat Tuesday - Tuesday, March 5 2019 10am - Gulf Shores Parade - Gulf Shores
  • Fat Tuesday - Tuesday, March 5 2019 2pm - Orange Beach Parade - Orange Beach

Daphne United Methodist Kid's Camp

2/13/2019 (Permalink)

At SERVPRO of Baldwin County we value community involvement. This summer we volunteered and donated money for a kids camp at Daphne United Methodist Church, located on Main Street, off of Highway 98 in Daphne, Alabama.  Our team member John Paul, a resident of Fairhope, set up a tent and handed out water to campers throughout the week. We are proud to help our community in any way we can!

Weather Alerts: What They Mean

8/14/2018 (Permalink)

  1. The National Weather Service defines a severe thunderstorm as any storm that produces one or more of the following elements:
  • A tornado.
  • Damaging winds or speeds of 58 mph (50 knots) or greater.
  • Hail 1 inch in diameter or larger.

Know these definitions so you are prepared for any storm:

  • Hurricane Watch
    Winds greater than 74 mph may hit the area within 36 hours.
  • Hurricane Warning
    Winds greater than 74 mph probably will to hit the area within 24 hours.
  • Tropical Storm Watch
    Winds from 39 to 73 mph may hit the area within 36 hours.
  • Tropical Storm Warning
    Winds from 39 to 73 mph probably will to hit the area within 24 hours. Usually issued for areas to either side of the Hurricane Warning area.
  • Tornado Watch
    Conditions are ripe for tornadoes within the watch area. Tornadoes associated with hurricanes and tropical storms are typically a very significant cause of death and damage.
  • Tornado Warning
    A tornado has actually been spotted visually or on radar. Usually issued for a county. If a tornado WARNING is issued where you live, GET TO THE MIDDLE OF THE LOWEST FLOOR OF A STRONG BUILDING IMMEDIATELY!!! 
  • Severe Thunderstorm Watch
    Conditions are ripe for severe thunderstorms within the watch area.
  • Severe Thunderstorm Warning
    There is a severe thunderstorm in or heading for the warned area. Treat this like a tornado warning!!
  • Flash Flood Watch
    Flash floods are likely to occur in the near future. Be alert for rising water and be prepared to have to move to high ground.
  • Flash Flood Warning
    Flash floods are occurring or expected to occur in the near future. If this happens, get to high ground immediately, and GET AWAY FROM VEHICLES... it only takes 18 inches of water to sweep a car or truck away!
  • High Wind Advisory
    Windy conditions may occur in the advisory area. This usually makes for unsafe conditions while driving, especially in (but not limited to) large vehicles. Also, avoid boating anywhere in the advisory area.
  • High Wind Warning
    Very strong winds are expected or already are occurring that present a significant danger while driving, boating and other outdoor activities. Often issued near tropical storms and hurricanes.
  • Special Marine Warning
    Warnings of interest to boaters, usually because of rough conditions, squall lines, waterspouts,
  • Hurricane or Tropical Storm Statement
    Statements issued periodically by the National Hurricane Center with an overview of the current situation.

Summer Fun and Fire Risk

8/14/2018 (Permalink)

Every summer we see house fires related to backyard grilling. With summer just around the corner, we thought it may be helpful to offer some of our most valuable grilling safety tips. Did you know that on average 8,900 house fires are caused by grilling each year? And, an average of 7,000 Americans are injured while using backyard grills each year? We didn't either.

Don't Let a Grilling Accident Ruin your Summer Fun

    1. Set up the grill at least 10 ft away from the home - this includes 10 ft away from your wooden deck! Do not grill on the deck.
    1. Favorite team playing in the college world series? Bring your radio or TV outside. Don't leave a grill unattended.
    1. Only turn on the gas when the grill lid is open.
    1. Raining outside? Wait for it to pass. Don't operate a backyard grill indoors.
    1. Check for gas leaks before use.
    1. Dirty grill? Clean it before using. Cleaning regularly prevents grease buildup - AKA more fuel for your fire.
    1. Prepare for the unexpected. Even the most experienced cooks can have a fire. Keep a fire extinguisher nearby and know how to use it.

Understand Accidents Happen

SERVPRO of Baldwin County is equipped to handle any sized smoke or fire loss. Whether it's your home or your business, we know that fires happen when they are least expected. And, we understand that fire and smoke damage can be stressful. Fast response and quick mitigation by our team of trained professionals are keys in reducing the amount of damage and time that you spend out of your home or business. Let us make it "Like it never even happened." We are available 24/7: 251-928-9625 or 251-943-6244.

Prepare for 2018 Hurricane Season

4/24/2018 (Permalink)

In 2017, we traveled to areas affected by named storms & hurricane along the US coast. This photo shows mitigation efforts on a residential project.

In 2017, the US saw damage from 3 major hurricanes and 4 storms.

Extreme hurricanes and wildfires made 2017 the most costly U.S. disaster year on record. Each year, weather events cause catastrophic damage in the US. In 2017 alone, "the disasters caused $306 billion in total damage in 2017, with 16 events that caused more than $1 billion in damage each. The bulk of the damage, at $265 billion, came from hurricanes." (source)

According to many researchers, the 2018 Atlantic Hurricane Season is expected to be above average as well. One of the costliest aspects of hurricane season is not just the wind, but the widespread flooding. In addition to storm surge, slow moving systems cause the accumulation of rain in creeks and rivers to back up even in areas which may be "low risk". 

How can you be prepared?

Speak with your insurance agent regarding your coverage. Flood insurance and Hurricane/Wind insurance may not be included in your Homeowners policy. 

Speak with your insurance agent regarding what amount will allow you the ability to rebuild your home. A lower premium is not always best if it does not cover the costs to rebuild. It's important to have enough coverage!

Review your policies before Hurricane season (reminder: it starts June 1st!) with your insurance agent. There is a 30-day waiting period before flood insurance goes into effect. Some  times, insurers will not adjust your coverage after a storm is forecast. 

See this post for information on how you can prepare your family in case of evacuation due to flooding.

Emergency Preparedness from SERVPRO of Baldwin County

3/29/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Baldwin County is a 24/7 Emergency Service Provider. We are READY and available to respond to your damage at all times.

Did you know?

"Forty percent of businesses do not reopen after a disaster and another 25 percent fail within one year according to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Similar statistics from the United States Small Business Administration indicate that over 90 percent of businesses fail within two years after being struck by a disaster." (source)

SERVPRO of Baldwin County is dedicated to reducing this risk. One of the ways we can do this is by setting up your free Emergency Ready Profile. A fast recovery is possible after disaster strikes - whether that be catastrophic to Baldwin County such as hurricanes, tornadoes, or flooding or affecting just your business (fire, pipe leak, etc.)

We are Here To Help® minimize your loss of revenue caused by the loss of operations. 

Call us at (251)928-9625 or (251)943-6244 to set yours up today!

Water Intrusions and Mold

3/29/2018 (Permalink)

This photo shows a current remediation project.

What Causes Mold?

Water intrusions in residential and commercial properties that are not properly mitigated contribute to mold. These water intrusions can include, but are not limited to storm damage (wind-driven rain or flooding), plumbing leaks, sprinkler system failure or even properly working following smoke/fire, water heater leaks, washing machine overflows and lack of humidity control (improperly working HVAC unit or improper manual use). Not surprisingly, we often see these issues in unoccupied or secondary homes. Since Baldwin County has a vast amount of second homes, we see this often. When vacation is over, many property owners adjust the HVAC unit to save electricity costs while they are away. Often, the biggest damages occur when there is a combination of these items - poor humidity control and no one checking on the property regularly.

Mold and microbial growth are the resulting damage from improper mitigation or lack of mitigation. Mold not only negatively affects the materials it grows on, but it is also can gravely affect the air quality. Some amounts of mold spores are normally present in most environments. Dark and warm moist areas provide the environment, and organic materials provide the food source for mold to flourish. These materials are commonly found in buildings and homes - they include but are not limited to the following: wood (framework, trim, flooring), drywall, paper, and insulation. By delaying mitigation following a water damage, mold spores may increase significantly. All environments, even healthy environments, contain some degree of mold or microbial growth, but when the damage becomes excessive, health threats increase dramatically.

Do you have mold?

At SERVPRO of Baldwin County, our team of experts have been trained by the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC); in regards to mold, our team members have received IICRC's specific designation for Applied Microbial Growth Technician (AMRT). Mold is no match for us. Our professionals use advanced water detection equipment to locate the source of the problem and remediate any mold or water damage. 

If you have concerns regarding mold growth following a water damage, reach out to our team of experts: 251-928-9625 / 251-943-6244. We are always here to help. 

Mold Damage in Orange Beach, AL

3/29/2018 (Permalink)

We recently completed a mold remediation project inside a condo caused by high humidity in the unit due to an improperly working HVAC unit. This problem is quite common along Gulf Coast, and we see this several times each year. The relative humidity was so high inside the unit that water droplets could be seen on the ceiling, floor, counters and appliances. Our remediation project manager developed a specific scope to be followed in order to correct the source of the problem, proper remediation of mold and water issues, and the reconstruction required as a result.   

Every mold damage scenario is different, and requires a unique solution, but the general mold remediation process stays the same. For more information regarding this, please click here. For a further look into our remediation process, see this previous blog post

If you discover mold in your Baldwin County home or business. Contact SERVPRO of Baldwin County by phone (251-928-9625) or email office@SERVPRObaldwincounty.com. It is important to contact a professional to address mold and microbial growth when you see it. Often times, the growth is associated with a water intrusion that may still be active. By contacting SERVPRO of Baldwin County, both the water mitigation and mold remediation can be addressed to prevent further problems.  

Preparing for a Flood

3/29/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Baldwin County teams provided relief in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey.

Flooding can happen fast and in many environments. Hurricanes are not the only weather event that bring widespread flooding, but they are certainly the costliest. Additionally, according to this article, "2017 was the costliest year ever for weather and climate disasters in the United States, the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration announced Monday, totaling $306 billion. The previous record year, 2005, saw $215 billion in disasters." (source)

With modern technology, we can receive early warnings that a hurricane is tracking towards our area; however, we cannot determine the flooding that may come as result. As we near 2018 hurricane season, it is prudent to be prepared for potential flooding. The American Red Cross recommends having the following list of items packed and ready to go in the event of an evacuation due to flooding:

  • Water - 3+ day supply; one gallon per person per day
  • Food - 3+ day supply of non-perishable, easy to prepare food
  • Flashlight
  • Battery-powered or hand-crank radio (NOAA Weather Radio if possible)
  • Extra Batteries
  • First Aid Kit
  • Medications (7 day supply) and medical items (hearing aids with extra batteries, glasses, contact lenses, syringes, cane)
  • Multi-purpose tool
  • Sanitation/personal hygiene items
  • Copies of personal documents (medication list and pertinent medical information, deed/lease to home, birth certificates, insurance policies)
  • Cell phone with chargers
  • Family and emergency contact information
  • Extra cash
  • Emergency blanket
  • Map(s) of the aea
  • Baby supplies (bottles, formula, baby food, diapers)
  • Pet supplies (collar, leash, ID, food, carrier, bowl)
  • Tools/supplies for securing your home
  • Extra set of car keys and house keys
  • Extra clothing, hat and sturdy shoes
  • Rain gear
  • Insect repellent and sunscreeen
  • Camera for photos of damage

Remember: when catastrophic water damage happens to you, SERVPRO of Baldwin County is here to help. We can help you prepare ahead of time with an Emergency Ready Profile or respond to any size damage to begin cleanup and restoration. In the event of a storm, call the cleanup team that is FASTER TO ANY SIZE DISASTER. When the storms roll out, we roll in. 

CONTACT:

251-928-9625

251-943-6244

office@SERVPRObaldwincounty.com 

Flooding Can Happen Anywhere

3/29/2018 (Permalink)

This photo shows drying being completed at a residential loss in Florida caused by flooding due to Hurricane Irma.

Flooding can happen anywhere.

There is often a misconception that if you are not 'in a flood zone,' or more accurately, if you are in a low risk community that your home or business will not flood. While your home or business may be in a low risk area, just because you haven't experienced a flood doesn't mean you won't in the future. The NFIP released that 20% of all paid claims were for low-risk policies. We frequently find that because of this misconception many home and business owners do not carry flood insurance. If you do not have flood insurance, the out of pocket costs associated with flood damage can be substantial.

Flood water is considered category 3 or black water. Black water is typically caused by sewage damage, flooding, or any type of natural disaster. This water is highly contaminated and filled with fungi, bacteria, chemicals and more. The restoration should only be handled by professionals. 

According to the National Weather Service (NOAA), the following are the most common flood hazards in the United States:

  • Flash flooding
  • River flooding
  • Storm surge and coastal inundation from tropical and non-tropical systems
  • Burn scars/debris flows (caused by wildfires)
  • Ice/debris jams
  • Snowmelt
  • Dry wash (caused by heavy rainfall in dry areas)
  • Dam breaks/levee failure

NOAA also said that, "Approximately seventy-five percent of all Presidential disaster declarations are associated with flooding." 

With every catastrophic storm, you can rest assured that there will be a catastrophic storm response. The SERVPRO System has a network of strategically positioned storm teams on standby should a disaster strike near you. Available 24 hours a day and 365 days a year, SERVPRO of Baldwin County is prepared for the unpredictable.

CONTACT:

251-928-9625

251-943-6244

office@SERVPRObaldwincounty.com 

Mold in Second Homes

3/28/2018 (Permalink)

This picture shows the wall where bathroom vanity has been detached following a water damage.

One of the unique aspects of living and working along the Eastern Shore and the Gulf Coast is the amount of second homes and investment properties. Many of the more complex calls we receive are due to water losses that go unnoticed for weeks or even months. Most of the time, these calls come from owners of properties that are self-managed or do not have someone checking on the condo/home regularly. After a period of time, a small damage can turn into a costly and often uncovered event rather quickly.

What's so expensive?

Many understand that mold appears after a water damage that has not been properly mitigated. But, did you know that industry standards recognize that mold can start growing as quickly as 24-48 hours after a water damage? 

Secondary damage results when mitigation is not performed promptly. This means that items that could have been restored following a properly mitigated water damage must now be replaced. Often times, mold affects furniture and content. Depending on the material and degree of damage, these items now must be restored or replaced. 

This particular loss was the result of a pipe leak that went unnoticed after one month. Unfortunately, while the water restoration was covered by the insurance carrier, the mold remediation was not. Luckily, most of the costs were able considered as water damage by the carrier; but, even so, this resulted in significant out of pocket costs to the insured.

Our recommendation is to check the home or condo unit frequently by way of a rental agency, housekeeper, or neighbor. Also, in the warmer months, it is recommended to leave the air conditioner on between 73-77 degrees.

SERVPRO of Baldwin County Storm Response

3/28/2018 (Permalink)

This photo was taken during mitigation. This Houston facility was flooded during Hurricane Harvey. This building received 2-3 feet of flood water.

SERVPRO of Baldwin County is a dedicated member of SERVPRO's National Storm Team. The SERVPRO National Storm Team mobilizes to areas affected by catastrophic flooding, tornadoes, and other disasters. This helps the local franchises service their customers by providing a fast response. A fast response lessens the damage, limits further damage, and reduces cost. Furthermore, it is essential in reducing costs due to secondary damage and time out of the home or business. No matter the size of the catastrophe, you can rest assured that SERVPRO is here to help.

SERVPRO of Baldwin County

Our team traveled to multiple storms last year. In August 2017, Hurricane Harvey caused catastrophic damage to the Gulf Coast and parts of inland Texas.  Our team mobilized 8 crews and 2 project managers to help the local franchises during the months of August and September. We were very grateful for the opportunity to help the fantastic Houston area franchises, Team Stone, and their residential and commercial customers. 

Hurricane Irma

3/28/2018 (Permalink)

This photo was taken during mitigation at a commercial facility in Florida following Hurricane Irma. This building was flooded with 4 ft of water.

Shortly following Hurricane Harvey's devastation in Texas, Hurricane Irma swept through Florida, Georgia, and the Carolinas.


Damage from Hurricanes

The damage that results from hurricanes is often multi-faceted. Flooding generally follows a hurricane due to both heavy rains and storm surge. Additionally, hurricane force winds and tornadoes cause significant wind damage.

Per ABC News, "Hurricanes Harvey and Irma caused between $150 billion and $200 billion in damage to Texas and Florida, comparable to the costs from Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans in 2005, according to a preliminary estimate from Moody's Analytics on Monday." 

Hurricane Irma Commercial Loss

SERVPRO of Baldwin County serviced a commercial client whose facility was affected by 4 ft of flood water due to Hurricane Irma. Due to lack of power for the first few days, multiple generators had to be brought in so that drying equipment could be placed. Servicing commercial clients can some times bring unique challenges because there are usually multiple parties involved. We were hired by both the tenant and the facility owner to handle the contents and structure. Due to separate parties, the claims had to be treated separately. We devoted one team to handle to the contents and another to handle the structure. The contents were inventoried; restorable items were moved into storage containers for the client while non-restorable items were disposed. In regards to the structure, mitigation was performed thoroughly and quickly to prevent loss of business interruption for both the tenant and facility owner. 

Residential House Fire in Daphne

3/28/2018 (Permalink)

This attic was affected by water, smoke and fire. This photo was taken during the initial walk-through before work was performed.

We recently performed fire and smoke restoration at a home in the Daphne/Montrose area. The cause of the fire was car engine overheating in the garage. While the fire damage was largely confined to the garage, soot and smoke odor traveled throughout the home affecting 100% of our customer's structure and content. There was also water damage in the Kitchen, Laundry, Garage, and Finished Attic where the fire was put out by first responders.

SERVPRO of Baldwin County was called in to clean up the damage. Our team of experts evaluated contents and structure to determine what could be restored. We performed the following services:

  • Contents Evaluation and Inventory
  • Move Out and Content Restoration
  • Walls, Ceiling, and Hard Floor Cleaning
  • Carpet Cleaning
  • Water Removal and Dehumidification
  • Textile Cleaning
  • Deodorization
  • Demo and Reconstruction

During the final walk-through, our customer said, "Everything looks fantastic. You made a difficult process extremely easy!"

We are so grateful for the opportunity to serve our community. From the Eastern Shore to North Baldwin to the Coast, we are YOUR disaster restoration contractor, and we are here for you. If you experience fire or water damage, reach out to our team of professionals: (251)928-9625 / (251)943-6244. 

Chili for Charity 2018

3/28/2018 (Permalink)

We enjoyed being a part of the EMI Chili for Charity! Our SERVPRO team competed February 24th, 2018 at Oak Hollow Farm in Fairhope, AL.

SERVPRO of Baldwin County competed in the 18th Annual Chili for Charity event for Ecumenical Ministries Inc. This year’s cook-off was held at Oak Hollow Farm in Fairhope, AL on Saturday, February 24, 2018.

It was a truly great event for the whole family. There was live music from Blind Dog Mike and the Howlers along with a performance by the Fairhope High School Encore Group. MCs were Lori DuBose & Mark from WABF radio. Also, for the kids, there were balloons, inflatable jumps, and a hay ride. Also for the kids (and big kids), there was a bake sale and mechanical bull. Antique tractors and engines were on display from the South Alabama Antique Tractor and Engine Club. WABF radio's Lori Dubose and Mark emceed the event. 

The proceeds from the event went to EMI's various programs that benefit people right in our community. Although we didn't win, we were glad to be a part of such a great event. Thank you Baldwin EMI! 

Commercial Water Damage at Local Business

3/27/2018 (Permalink)

This photo shows one of our valued team members extracting water from the 3rd floor.

Our team responded to a large commercial water damage recently.

The damage was caused by a pipe leak which went unnoticed while the business was closed over the weekend. It affected 4 stories (approx 21,000 square feet). SERVPRO of Baldwin County was called to clean up the aftermath!

We received the call 6:15 AM last Monday when the first employees began to arrive. Our team immediately mobilized. When our project manager arrived, he walked the building with the president and facilities director to go over a scope of services. Meanwhile, our crew began extracting water and performing emergency services. The entire project took 6 days with water extraction, drying, and removing non-salvageable materials. Luckily, promptly performing emergency services enabled our team to salvage most of the materials. This helped by reducing costs for repairs and minimizing business interruption. 

By the end of the mitigation, the president said that, "Your response, knowledge and communication were top class. You have gained a life-long customer!"

We are so grateful for the opportunity to serve our community. Thank you Baldwin County!

Water Mitigation in Baldwin County, AL

3/9/2018 (Permalink)

This loss was caused by a leak in the attic which caused significant damage throughout the home. We performed mitigation prior to reconstruction.

As mitigation specialists, our trained team of experts at SERVPRO of Baldwin County focus on reducing loss, enabling quick recoveries and lessening costs involved with restoration of property damage events. Proper mitigation is especially important due to our climate in South Alabama.

Why Mitigate?

  • Mitigation reduces losses of life and property.
  • Mitigation enables people to recover more quickly from a disaster.
  • Mitigation lessens the financial impact of disasters.

When to Mitigate:

  • Water
  • Fire
  • Vandalism
  • Crime Scene

Mitigation: How does it Help?

Benefits the Claims Representative by:

  • Increasing customer satisfaction through immediate attention!
  • Reducing costs per claim.
  • Closing claims more rapidly.
  • Enhancing your company's reputation as a responsive insurer.
  • Improving policyholder retention.

Benefits the Policyholder by Reducing:

  • The amount of time a policyholder is inconvenienced.
  • The amount of time business is interrupted.
  • The potential for mold growth.
  • The loss of personal valuables and beloved belongings.
  • The cost of insurance.

Benefits the Policyholder by Increasing:

  • The insured's satisfaction with the claims experience.
  • The insured's trust in your company as a responsive insurer.
  • The potential for preserving irreplaceable heirlooms, art, and sentimental treasures.
  • The amount of structure and contents that are restored.

Types of Water

  • Cat 1: Broken Pipe, Icemaker, Drain overflow; no waste or contaminants
  • Cat 2: Washing Machine, Dishwasher, Roof Leak; some soils and contaminants
  • Cat 3: Raw sewage, Floods; high degree of waste and contaminants

Water Mitigation Procedure

  • Extraction of excess water
  • Mold and microbial prevention
  • Drying Process: Dehumidification and evaptoration
  • Monitoring the drying process
  • Rebuild and final cleanup

Mold Remediation Process: What is it?

2/5/2018 (Permalink)

This photo shows mold after drywall ceiling was removed.

Often times, we receive calls requesting information about how our team goes about the mold remediation process. Unfortunately, the answer is not the same for everyone. The mold remediation process depends on the amount of mold growth and types of surfaces on which the mold appears. As you can imagine, this can vary greatly from one home or business to the next.

What is the Process?

In almost every scenario, your property will have to be carefully inspected for signs of mold using technology designed to detect mold and hidden water sources. Mold feeds on cellulose and water - most often, these are hidden from plain view.

Before any remediation process occurs, various containment procedures will be placed to prevent the spread of mold and isolate the contaminated area. Such containment procedures include physical barriers (i.e. plastic) and use of negative air pressure to keep the mold spores from spreading during the cleanup process. Specialized filtration equipment captures microscopic mold spores out of the air. We utilize powerful air scrubbers and HEPA vacuums to prevent the spread of these mold spores while the mold remediation is in progress. 

In some cases, we may recommend cleaning the material with an antifungal and antimicrobial treatment. Antifungal and antimicrobial treatments will be used to eliminate mold colonies and help prevent new colonies from forming. Unfortunately, not all scenarios allow for simply treating and wiping down. Removing and disposing of mold-infested drywall and flooring may be necessary to remediate heavy mold growth. Following this, the areas must be properly treated. Simply removing and replacing the affected materials does not fix the mold problem.

In many instances, in order to properly treat your your home or business, we will clean your furniture, decorative items, curtains, and other restorable items affected by mold. A variety of cleaning techniques will be used to clean and sanitize your belongings. We may also utilize specialty equipment to deodorize lingering odors associated with mold or mildew.

Mold?

Mold can be a serious problem on the Gulf Coast due to high temperatures and high humidity. If you think you have mold, contact the professionals at SERVPRO of Baldwin County: 251-928-9625 / 251-943-6244.

Identifying Commercial Client's Top Priority: Business Interruption

12/29/2017 (Permalink)

This project began December 26th, 2017. This was a commercial mold loss which began from a leaking roof earlier this year.

Avoiding business interruption is almost always the top priority of our commercial clients. 

At SERVPRO of Baldwin County, many of our members come from backgrounds in finance and accounting professions, and they understand the importance of maintaining cash-flow for a business. 

Prior to beginning a commercial restoration project, the facility is walked-through with appropriate decision makers. If avoiding business interruption is a priority, our team will work with the client to provide quality service while helping the client maintain production in their facility. Some of the ways we do that is by working out a schedule with the client so that our team works after hours or on weekends while the facility is normally closed; or, we may work around the client in specified areas during business hours; another solution is moving the client to another building until restoration and repairs have been completed. Whatever the answer may be, each is tailored to meet and satisfy the needs of our client on a case by case basis.

Commercial Damage?

SERVPRO of Baldwin County recognizes the urgency to react and to immediately build a recovery plan when we partner with commercial clients. Our office works with our partners to make sure documents flow through the right channels in order to simplify settlements during claims or direct pay losses. If tenants are involved, we have the flexibility to work directly with them individually. We also anticipate and recognize coverage issues so that our customers can understand how the claim will be settled.

The SERVPRO brand is the most recognized and respected brand in the mitigation industry. If there is a disaster in your commercial facility, call the team at SERVPRO of Baldwin County: 251-928-9625 / 251-943-6244.

Common Causes of Fire Damages

8/18/2017 (Permalink)

Electrical out catching fire

Home electrical fires account for 51,000 fires each year, and an estimated $1.3 billion in property damage. Learn these common causes of fire damage to prevent fire damage in your home or business:

Many electrical fires are caused by faulty electrical outlets or outdated appliances. Frayed appliance cords can also lead to electrical fires.  Under no circumstances should you ever remove the ground plug from an appliance cord. These appliance cords are only to be used with outlets that can handle the extra amount of electricity.

Another cause of electrical fires is the misuse of extension cords. Extension cords are only to be used on a temporary basis and not as permanent wiring. Extension cords can overheat and cause fires when not used properly. Never should you run extension cords through walls and ceilings, and never use nails or staples to hold an extension cord in place.

Space heaters are also a major cause of electrical fires. Space heaters should always be kept on a flat, level surface to prevent being turned over. These portable heaters are often placed too close to curtains, beds, and other combustible surfaces. Remember to always keep space heaters at least three feet from items that can burn. 

Common Causes of Fire Damages

8/18/2017 (Permalink)

Electrical outlet catching fire

Home electrical fires account for 51,000 fires each year, and an estimated $1.3 billion in property damage. Learn these common causes of fire damage to prevent fire damage in your home or business:

Many electrical fires are caused by faulty electrical outlets or outdated appliances. Frayed appliance cords can also lead to electrical fires.  Under no circumstances should you ever remove the ground plug from an appliance cord. These appliance cords are only to be used with outlets that can handle the extra amount of electricity.

Another cause of electrical fires is the misuse of extension cords. Extension cords are only to be used on a temporary basis and not as permanent wiring. Extension cords can overheat and cause fires when not used properly. Never should you run extension cords through walls and ceilings, and never use nails or staples to hold an extension cord in place.

Space heaters are also a major cause of electrical fires. Space heaters should always be kept on a flat, level surface to prevent being turned over. These portable heaters are often placed too close to curtains, beds, and other combustible surfaces. Remember to always keep space heaters at least three feet from items that can burn. 

Speed is Key for Water Damages

8/18/2017 (Permalink)

Water damage on hardwood floor

What is Mitigation?

In its simplest form, mitigation is what we do to stop the damage that would occur if nothing is done following a water or fire damage. If not mitigated, water and contaminants that are the by-products of fire damage cause significantly more damage over time to the property. 

The primary goals of mitigation are the following:

  • stop the damage
  • save costs (decide whether items need to be restored or replaced)
  • get the home or business owner back to normal, faster.

The insured has a responsibility to mitigate even before the insurance adjuster and restorative drying vendor arrives; but, a property owner can only do so much. The restorative drying vendor should be ready for whatever happens.

Speed is Key

Fast response during the water damage is vital as significant damage to both structure and contents can occur as early as a few hours.

Speed is the key to effective mitigation, and effective mitigation saves time, headaches, and money.  

The primary reason to respond quickly is to avoid secondary damage. After the water is extracted and the area is sanitized, the drying equipment is set. The key to successful drying is creating a balanced drying system. Wood floors pose special problems for extraction as water becomes trapped under and between the planks. Water atop the wood floor is removed with a light squeegee wand but that below may need to be extracted by specialty drying equipment such as the mat system we see in this picture. Air movers direct airflow to the areas that are in need.

Choose a Quality Restoration Vendor

An effective mitigation company needs to be ready for whatever happens, and have the equipment needed to mitigate the loss as quickly as possible, regardless of the size and/or extent of the loss conditions.

At SERVPRO of Baldwin County, we understand the need to be faster to any size disaster. Call us and we will make your water or fire damage "Like it never even happened." 

Water Damage Detection

8/18/2017 (Permalink)

Thermal imaging can detect cooler temperatures in materials.

Water damage can happen when you least expect it. Standing water is one thing, but, what happens with the water that you don't see? And, what happens if there is too much water to clean up?

Detecting Water Damage

With water damage, it's the water you don't see that causes the most damage. It is no surprise that water damage that has not been properly mitigated can lead to microbial growth and mold. After a water damage, it is important to have the entire area checked for moisture in order to prevent more extensive damage, and ultimately, more expensive repairs. If you've noticed water damage, call your local SERVPRO professional. We will be able to determine if the moisture levels in the home are normal. If they are not, we will show you where the moisture is found, develop a scope of how the site should be properly mitigated, and update you daily with drying progress. 

Call SERVPRO

There is no such thing as a small disaster. A small leak now can turn into a large damage if not properly remediated. By using a quality restoration team like SERVPRO of Baldwin County, that unexpected water damage will stay a thing of the past. If you have a water damage, call the team that is faster to any size disaster.

Fire Damage: What to Do

7/25/2017 (Permalink)

This photo shows significant smoke damage to a wall

Do

Limit movement in the home to prevent soot particles from being embedded into upholstery and carpet.

Keep hands clean. Soot on hands can further soil upholstery, walls and woodwork.

Place dry, colorfast towels or old linens on rugs, upholstery and high traffic areas.

If electricity is off, empty freezer and refrigerator completely and prop doors open to help prevent odor.

Wipe soot from chrome on kitchen and bathroom faucets, trim and appliances, then protect these surfaces with a light coating of lubricant.

If heat is off during winter, poor RV antifreeze in sinks, toilet bowls, holding tanks and tubs to avoid freezing pipes and fixtures. 

Wash both sides of leaves on house plants.

Change HVAC filter, but leave system off until a trained professional can check the system.

Tape double layers of cheesecloth over air registers top stop particles of soot from getting in or out of the HVAC system.

Water Damage from Clean Water: What to Do:

7/25/2017 (Permalink)

This photo shows water damage to the carpet floor.

Do:

  • Shut off the source of water if possible or contact a qualified party to stop the water source.
  • Turn off circuit breakers for wet areas of the building, when access to the power distribution panel is safe from electrical shock.
  • Remove as much exess water as possible by mopping and blotting.
  • Wipe excess water from wood furniture after removing lamps and tabletop items.
  • Remove and prop up wet upholstery cushions for even drying.
  • Place aluminum foil or wood blocks between furniture legs and wet carpeting.
  • Remove to a safe, dry place any paintings, art objects, computers, documents and other materials that are valuable or sensitive to moisture.
  • Use wooden clothespins to keep furniture skirting off damp floors.
  • Hang draperies with coated hangers to avoid contact with wet carpeting or floors.
  • Hang furs and leather goods to dry separately at room temperature.

Water Damage from Clean Water: What Not to Do:

7/25/2017 (Permalink)

Wall affected by water damage

Don't:

  • Enter rooms with standing water where electrical shock hazards may exist.
  • Enter affected areas if electrical outlets, switches, circuit breakers or electrical equipment have been exposed to or are submerged in water. Always avoid electrical shock hazards.
  • Leave books, newspapers, magazines or other colored items on wet carpets or floors as this could potentially cause staining.
  • Leave Oriental rugs or any other rugs on the floor on wet wall-to-wall carpets to cause staining.
  • Use your household vacuum cleaner to remove water, possibly causing electrical shock to yourself or damage to the vacuum cleaner.
  • Use TVs or other appliances while standing on wet carpets or floors, and especially not on wet concrete flooring.
  • Turn on ceiling fixtures if the ceiling is wet or enter rooms where ceilings are sagging from retained water.

Commercial Restoration Services

6/22/2017 (Permalink)

A recent commercial water damage

No one wants to discover water or fire damage on a Monday morning. Unfortunately, a commercial facility is more likely to have a larger, more significant damage than a residential home. This is not only because of the facility's size, but it is also because commercial facilities generally have longer periods without anyone there (i.e. overnight, weekends, holidays). Because of this, it is important to have a plan in place in case a disaster does happen. 

Call Us Today (251) 928-9625 or (251) 943-6244

Did you know that we do commercial damage restoration? We know the stress and anxiety that water or fire damage can bring to your business. At SERVPRO of Baldwin County, we are dedicated to limiting your business interruption by being faster to any size disaster. We can be on-site within a few hours to help reduce future damage water can cause. We have the right equipment, procedures and training to help ensure the structure is clean & dry the first time, saving you time and money. 

Commercial Water Damage

6/22/2017 (Permalink)

A recent water damage

Sprinkler systems can be a common source of water damage in commercial facilities. While their benefits far outweigh their cons, both properly and improperly working sprinkler systems can contribute to a flooded facility. In this case, a fire in an adjacent building caused the sprinkler system in this building to go off over the weekend. The sprinkler shut-off was eventually found but not until the damage had affected 36,000 sq ft of the facility. If this was your facility, what would you do?

Choose a Trained Professional

When your facility is affected, it is important to call a commercial drying specialist such as SERVPRO of Baldwin County.  At SERVPRO of Baldwin County, we understand that every hour closed leads to an hour lost of productivity and potential revenue. Commercial damage restoration produces unique challenges so it is very important to choose a trained professional with a proven track record. 

At SERVPRO of Baldwin County, we will respond immediately to your damage regardless of size or scope. When your facility is affected, no job is too big or too small. 

If your find yourself in this situation, call SERVPRO of Baldwin County.

Water Damage: What to Do and What Not to Do

6/22/2017 (Permalink)

Commercial Water Damage

Do:

  • Shut off the source of water if possible or contact a qualified party to stop the water source.
  • Turn off circuit breakers for wet areas of the building, when access to the power distribution panel is safe from electrical shock.
  • Remove as much exess water as possible by mopping and blotting.
  • Wipe excess water from wood furniture after removing lamps and tabletop items.
  • Remove and prop up wet upholstery cushions for even drying.
  • Place aluminum foil or wood blocks between furniture legs and wet carpeting.
  • Remove to a safe, dry place any paintings, art objects, computers, documents and other materials that are valuable or sensitive to moisture.
  • Use wooden clothespins to keep furniture skirting off damp floors.
  • Hang draperies with coated hangers to avoid contact with wet carpeting or floors.
  • Hang furs and leather goods to dry separately at room temperature.

Don't

  • Enter rooms with standing water where electrical shock hazards may exist.
  • Enter affected areas if electrical outlets, switches, circuit breakers or electrical equipment have been exposed to or are submerged in water. Always avoid electrical shock hazards.
  • Leave books, newspapers, magazines or other colored items on wet carpets or floors as this could potentially cause staining.
  • Leave Oriental rugs or any other rugs on the floor on wet wall-to-wall carpets to cause staining.
  • Use your household vacuum cleaner to remove water, possibly causing electrical shock to yourself or damage to the vacuum cleaner.
  • Use TVs or other appliances while standing on wet carpets or floors, and especially not on wet concrete flooring.
  • Turn on ceiling fixtures if the ceiling is wet or enter rooms where ceilings are sagging from retained water. 

Extreme Heat

6/14/2017 (Permalink)

On average, heat is the number one weather-related killer in the United States (www.noaa.gov).

Extreme Heat


Did you know? On average, heat is the number one weather-related killer in the United States (www.noaa.gov).


As summer approaches, it is time to consider safety precautions for extreme heat in the coming months. Heat affects all people, but especially, the young, the elderly, sick, and overweight. Urban area residents also have a greater chance of being affected than those who live in rural areas due to the heat island effect.


According to the EPA, "the sun can heat dry, exposed urban surfaces such as roofs and pavement, to temperatures 50-90 degrees hotter than the air, while shaded or moist surfaces - often in more rural surroundings - remain close to air temperatures." These surface heat islands are strongest during the day when the sun is shining, while the atmospheric heat islands are more likely after sunset "due to the slow release of heat from urban infrastructure." 


Safety Tips for You and your Family



  • Stay indoors in air conditioning

  • Be sure to check on your pets who may outdoors and bring them inside

  • Stay hydrated and limit alcohol and caffeine intake

  • If you must go outside, wear loose-fitting, light-colored clothing, and be sure to apply sunscreen often.

  • Pay attention to signs of heat exhaustion, which are heavy sweating; weakness; cold, pale, and clammy skin; nausea or vomiting; and fainting, according to the CDC.


 


The Dangers of Heat Exhaustion


Heat exhaustion can lead to heat stroke, which is life-threatening. Signs of heat stroke are a high body temperature, rapid or strong pulse, and possible unconsciousness. If you think someone has heat stroke, call 911 immediately and move the person somewhere cool. Reduce body temperature with cool, wet cloths or a bath. Do not give person with heat stroke fluids, and treat the situation as a serious medical emergency (CDC). 


Baldwin County Residents:


Living in a humid environment means paying attention to the heat index. The heat index factors in the humidity which can make the temperature feel 15 degrees hotter.


Safety Tips for your Home



  • Install window air conditioners snugly and insulate if necessary

  • Check air-conditioning ducts for proper installation

  • Install temporary window reflectors

  • Weather-strip doors and sills to keep the cool air in

  • Cover windows that receive morning or afternoon sun

  • Keep storm windows up all year


Safety Tips for your Community



  • Check on elderly at risk neighbors twice a day

  • Encourage elderly to increase their fluid intake based on their doctor's recommendations

  • Take elderly to air-conditioned areas if they have transportation problems 


Extreme Heat is a serious danger. For more information on preparation and prevention, visit ready.gov or cdc.gov


 

2017 Condo Owner Educational Symposium & Trade Show

6/1/2017 (Permalink)

We were excited to participate in the 2017 Condo Owner Educational Symposium & Trade Show hosted By Condo Owner Magazine.

We were excited to participate in the 2017 Condo Owner Educational Symposium & Trade Show hosted By Condo Owner Magazine. This was very informative for both attendees and exhibitors.

In case you were unable to make it, take a look at some of our Emergency Preparedness Tips below:

Prepare an Emergency Supply Kit – You should plan for 3 days of supplies, so you'll need water – a gallon per person per day – and non-perishable foods. Then add basic tools (wrench, pliers, can opener, matches), fire extinguisher, flashlight and radio with extra batteries, a first aid kit, extra clothing and hygiene items, garbage bags and duct tape, copies of important documents (insurance policies, ID, bank accounts), cash and local maps. 

Establish a Family Emergency Plan – Designate an out-of-town contact as your family's centralized, emergency communications facilitator in case your family is not together when a disaster strikes. Add that person's number to your emergency contacts on each family member’s cell phone. If you can't reach that individual with a call from a cell phone, try texting. 

Stay Informed – Learn about your community's emergency procedures and participate in activities planned during National Preparedness Month. You can also request checklists and other disaster preparedness tools from SERVPRO or at ready.gov. 

If your business suffers a major loss, call 251-928-9625 or 251-943-6244

Tornado Season and Storm Cleanup

6/1/2017 (Permalink)

Know the signs of a tornado before it hits!

Tornadoes can strike quickly, and oftentimes, without much warning. According to NSSL, “A tornado is a narrow, violently rotating column of air that extends from the base of a thunderstorm to the ground.” Tornadoes are often hard to see unless a funnel forms because wind is invisible. Tornadoes can be difficult to see unless dust and debris are gathered within the condensation. If you cannot see the funnel, debris clouds can often mark their location. Made up of water droplets, dust, and debris, tornadoes are the most violent of all atmospheric storms.

How long is tornado season exactly? In the Southeast, tornado season lasts from March through May; however tornadoes can occur through early fall. Tornadoes often follow behind severe thunderstorms and hurricanes. Unfortunately, Baldwin County is no stranger to either.

Before the Storm  

Know the Signs:

  1. Whirling cloud of debris
  2. Very still air and lack of wind, especially following severe thunderstorm or hail
  3. Dark, greenish sky
  4. Low-lying wall cloud
  5. Debris being thrown from the sky
  6. Bright flashes near the ground, especially at night

During the Storm

During the storm, it is always best to find shelter. It is never a good option to be outside during the threat of severe weather such as tornadoes. Head to a storm shelter or sturdy building if possible. If a storm shelter is available, make this your first option. If it’s not, head to a sturdy building with a basement. Basements are not very common in Baldwin County. If you do not have access to a basement or storm shelter head to a sturdy building, moving to the center away from windows and exterior doors. Stay in the shelter until the storm passes.

After the Storm

SERVPRO of Baldwin County specializes in storm damage cleanup. After the storm, SERVPRO can restore your home, business, and personal property back to preloss conditions. We have the tools, resources, and training to make any loss “Like it never even happened.” Cleaning up after a storm doesn’t have to be hard, and choosing a company doesn’t have to be, either. Call SERVPRO of Baldwin County: 251-928-9625 / 251-943-6244. SERVPRO of Baldwin County is locally owned and operated, so we are part of this community too. When you have a flooding or storm emergency, we’re already nearby and ready to help. We take pride in being a part of this community and want to do our part in making it the best it can be.

The Mold Mitigation & Remediation Process

6/1/2017 (Permalink)

This mold was found in a closet after a previous water intrusion had gone unnoticed and was not mitigated.

The Mold Mitigation & Remediation Process: What Happens?

When there's water intrusion, like a roof leak or leaking water line, mold can become a problem in your home or business. Mold can affected your health and can also cause significant property damage. Although every mold damage scenario is different, the general mold remediation process stays the same. The following steps illustrate a "typical" mold removal process:

  • Call SERVPRO of Baldwin County
  • Inspection and Damage Assessment
    • Your property will be carefully inspected for signs of mold using technology designed to detect mold and hidden water sources. Mold feeds on cellulose and water which can be hidden from plain view.
  • Mold Containment
    • Various containment procedures will be placed to prevent the spread of mold and isolate the contaminated area with physical barriers and negative air pressure to keep the mold spores from spreading during the cleanup process.
  • Air Filtration
    • Specialized filtration equipment captures microscopic mold spores out of the area. SERVPRO of Baldwin County Technicians utilize equipment such as air scrubbers and commercial grade HEPA vacuums to prevent the spread of these mold spores while the mold remediation is in progress.
  • Cleaning Contents & Belongings
    • SERVPRO of Baldwin County will clean your furniture, decorative items, curtains, and other restorable items affected by mold. We use a variety of cleaning techniques to clean and sanitize your belongings. We are also trained to remove odors and deodorize using fogging equipment. 
  • Restoration
    • Depending on the level of mold damage, drywall, subfloors, and other building materials may be removed. 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.

SERVPRO of Baldwin County

SERVPRO of Baldwin County understands mold and mold growth, and has the training and equipment to remediate mold in your home or business. We are ready to help if a fire, water, or mold loss occurs. Call on a restoration company serving insurance companies and their insureds, as well as commercial property owners across Baldwin County. You can trust the SERVPRO Brand! Call us today: 251-928-9625 / 251-943-6244

The SERVPRO Emergency READY Profile Advantage

6/1/2017 (Permalink)

As many as 50% of businesses close down following a disaster, according to the latest research. Of the businesses that survive, the overwhelming major

No one wants to discover water or fire damage on a Monday morning. Unfortunately, a commercial facility is more likely to have a larger, more significant damage than a residential home. This is not only because of the facility's size, but it is also because commercial facilities generally have longer periods without anyone there (i.e. overnight, weekends, holidays). Because of this, it is important to have a plan in place in case a disaster does happen. 

By developing a SERVPRO Emergency READY Profile for your business, you minimize business interruption by having an immediate plan of action. Knowing what to do and what to expect in advance is the key to timely mitigation and can help minimize how water and fire damage can affect your business.

  • A no cost assessment of your facility.
    This means there is no need to allocate funds, giving you a great value at no cost.
     
  • A concise Profile Document that contains only the critical information needed in the event of an emergency.
    It will only take a little time to complete and will not take you away from current projects. But it will save a lot of time if ever needed.
     
  • A guide to help you get back into your building following a disaster.
    This can help minimize the amount of time your business is inactive by having an immediate plan of action.
     
  • Establishes SERVPRO of Baldwin County as your disaster mitigation and restoration provider.
    You have a provider that is recognized as an industry leader and close by.
     
  • Identification of the line of command for authorizing work to begin.
    This saves time so we can begin the work of mitigating the damage which can save you time and money.
     
  • Provides facility details such as shut-off valve locations, priority areas and priority contact information.
    Having a quick reference of what to do, how to do it and who to call provides solutions in advance of an emergency so that during the emergency you are "Ready for whatever happens."

Ready to get started? Call Us Today! 251-928-9625 or 251-943-6244

Summer Grilling Safety Tips

5/19/2017 (Permalink)

Don't be a statistic! Call SERVPRO of Baldwin County.

Every summer we see house fires related to backyard grilling. With summer just around the corner, we thought it may be helpful to offer some of our most valuable grilling safety tips. Did you know that on average 8,900 house fires are caused by grilling each year? And, an average of 7,000 Americans are injured while using backyard grills each year? We didn't either.


Don't Let a Grilling Accident Ruin your Summer Fun



  1. Set up the grill at least 10 ft away from the home - this includes 10 ft away from your wooden deck! Do not grill on the deck.

  2. Favorite team playing in the college world series? Bring your radio or TV outside. Don't leave a grill unattended.

  3. Only turn on the gas when the grill lid is open.

  4. Raining outside? Wait for it to pass. Don't operate a backyard grill indoors.

  5. Check for gas leaks before use.

  6. Dirty grill? Clean it before using. Cleaning regularly prevents grease buildup - AKA more fuel for your fire.

  7. Prepare for the unexpected. Even the most experienced cooks can have a fire. Keep a fire extinguisher nearby and know how to use it.


Understand Accidents Happen


SERVPRO of Baldwin County is equipped to handle any sized smoke or fire loss. Whether it's your home or your business, we know that fires happen when they are least expected. And, we understand that fire and smoke damage can be stressful. Fast response and quick mitigation by our team of trained professionals are keys in reducing the amount of damage and time that you spend out of your home or business. Let us make it "Like it never even happened." We are available 24/7: 251-928-9625 or 251-943-6244.

Warm Gulf Waters – Higher Severe Weather Risk?

4/18/2017 (Permalink)

CAPE Relation to Number of Tornadoes

More tornadoes?

This winter, the average sea surface temperature of the Gulf of Mexico never fell below 73 degrees for the first time on record. Scientists have found that when the Gulf of Mexico tends to be warmer than normal, there is more energy for severe storms and tornadoes to form than when the Gulf is cooler.

One of the best predictors of storm activity is a variable known as convective available potential energy, or CAPE, which essentially measures the amount of energy available to rapidly lift a parcel vertically through the atmosphere. Values of 2,500 joules/kg are generally considered high enough to provide ample energy for severe storms to form.

A study published in the journal Geophysical Research Letters in December found that the warmer the Gulf of Mexico sea surface temperatures, the more hail and tornadoes occur during March through May over the southern U.S.

Hurricanes

The implications of the warm water for hurricane season are less clear. Warmer than normal water temperatures can make tropical storms and hurricanes more intense, but wind shear and atmospheric moisture levels often play more important roles in hurricane formation.

 

Mold Growth - Where to Find it?

4/18/2017 (Permalink)

Mold Growth on Ceiling

Mold growth occurs when mold spores settle on a surface at the proper temperature, with appropriate food sources, and with the proper amount of moisture. An adequate amount of moisture in materials is typically the limiting factor preventing mold growth as well as the easiest to control.

In the summer, when air-conditioning is in use, mold growth can occur in buildings where the cooling systems are oversized, undersized or poorly maintained. Unplanned air flow in buildings can also create conditions favorable to mold growth.

Molds gradually destroy whatever they grow on, so preventing mold growth also prevents damage to building materials and furnishings.

Every mold damage scenario is different, and requires a unique solution, but the general mold remediation process stays the same. The steps listed below illustrate our “typical” process:

  1. Emergency Contact - (251) 928-9625 / (251) 943-6244
  2. Inspection and Mold Damage Assessment
  3. Mold Containment
  4. Air Filtration
  5. Removing Mold and Mold-Infested Materials
  6. Cleaning Contents and Belongings
  7. Restoration

Be Prepared - SERVPRO® Emergency READY Profile

3/28/2017 (Permalink)

Download the SERVPRO ERP App Today

The Best Way to Reduce Business Interruption Following a Disaster is to Plan For it NOW.

As many as 50% of businesses may never recover following a disaster, according to the latest industry research. Of the businesses that survive, the overwhelming majority of them had a preparedness plan in place. Pre-planning can serve as an insurance policy aimed at peace of mind.

By developing a SERVPRO® Emergency READY Profile for your business, you minimize business interruption by having an immediate plan of action. Knowing what to do and what to expect in advance is the key to timely mitigation and can help minimize how water and fire damage can affect your business.

Are You Ready?

Preparation is a key component for making it through any size disaster, whether it’s a small water leak, a large fire or an area flood. The best time for planning for such events is not when the event happens, but well before it happens. No one ever plans on a disaster, but you can plan for it. Now is the time to ask yourself, “Are you ready for whatever could happen?”

The SERVPRO® Emergency READY Profile is a start up approach that provides the critical information needed to begin mitigation and recovery services. It is designed to serve as a quick reference of important building and contact information. By working with SERVPRO’s Emergency READY Profile, your business will receive the benefit of over 40 years of experience in reducing the impact of any natural or man-made disaster. SERVPRO® is a leader in water and fire damage response and can help you quickly get your property back in working order.

Baldwin County Residents: Follow These Mold Safety Tips If You Suspect Mold

3/28/2017 (Permalink)

Be careful! Without proper training, you could be spreading mold throughout your home.

If you see visible mold, do not disturb it. You can inadvertently spread the mold infestation throughout your home. When mold is disturbed, the mold can release microscopic mold spores which become airborne and can circulate inside your home.

What to Do:

  • Stay out of affected areas.
  • Turn off the HVAC system and fans.
  • Contact SERVPRO of Baldwin County for mold remediation services.

What Not to Do:

  • Don’t touch or disturb the mold.
  • Don’t blow air across any surfaces with visible or suspected mold growth.
  • Don’t attempt to dry the area yourself.
  • Don’t spray bleach or other disinfectants on the mold.

About Our Mold Remediation Services

SERVPRO of Baldwin County specializes in mold cleanup and restoration, in fact, it’s a cornerstone of our business.  Our crews are highly trained restoration professionals that use specialized equipment and techniques to properly remediate your mold problem quickly and safely.

If You See Signs of Mold, Call Us Today – 251-943-6244

Does Your Baldwin County Home Have A Mold Problem?

3/28/2017 (Permalink)

In Baldwin County, mold can spread through a home in as little as 48 hours.

 

Microscopic mold spores naturally occur almost everywhere, both outdoors and indoors. This makes it impossible to remove all mold from a home or business. Therefore, mold remediation reduces the mold spore count back to its natural or baseline level. Some restoration businesses advertise “mold removal” and even guarantee to remove all mold, which is a fallacy. Consider the following mold facts:

  • Mold is present almost everywhere, indoors and outdoors.
  • Mold spores are microscopic and float along in the air and may enter your home through windows, doors, or AC/heating systems or even hitch a ride indoors on your clothing or a pet.
  • Mold spores thrive on moisture. Mold spores can quickly grow into colonies when exposed to water. These colonies may produce allergens and irritants.
  • Before mold remediation can begin, any sources of water or moisture must be addressed. Otherwise, the mold may return.
  • Mold often produces a strong, musty odor and can lead you to possible mold problem areas.
  • Even higher-than-normal indoor humidity can support mold growth. Keep indoor humidity below 45 percent.

If your home or business has a mold problem, we can inspect and assess your property and use our specialized training, equipment, and expertise to remediate your mold infestation.

If You See Signs of Mold, Call Us Today – 251-943-6244

Be Ready: Weather Alert Definitions

3/28/2017 (Permalink)

Weather Alert Definitions

The National Weather Service defines a severe thunderstorm as any storm that produces one or more of the following elements:

  • A tornado.
  • Damaging winds or speeds of 58 mph (50 knots) or greater.
  • Hail 1 inch in diameter or larger.

Know these definitions so you are prepared for any storm:

  • Hurricane Watch
    Winds greater than 74 mph may hit the area within 36 hours.
  • Hurricane Warning
    Winds greater than 74 mph probably will to hit the area within 24 hours.
  • Tropical Storm Watch
    Winds from 39 to 73 mph may hit the area within 36 hours.
  • Tropical Storm Warning
    Winds from 39 to 73 mph probably will to hit the area within 24 hours. Usually issued for areas to either side of the Hurricane Warning area.
  • Tornado Watch
    Conditions are ripe for tornadoes within the watch area. Tornadoes associated with hurricanes and tropical storms are typically a very significant cause of death and damage.
  • Tornado Warning
    A tornado has actually been spotted visually or on radar. Usually issued for a county. If a tornado WARNING is issued where you live, GET TO THE MIDDLE OF THE LOWEST FLOOR OF A STRONG BUILDING IMMEDIATELY!!! 
  • Severe Thunderstorm Watch
    Conditions are ripe for severe thunderstorms within the watch area.
  • Severe Thunderstorm Warning
    There is a severe thunderstorm in or heading for the warned area. Treat this like a tornado warning!!
  • Flash Flood Watch
    Flash floods are likely to occur in the near future. Be alert for rising water and be prepared to have to move to high ground.
  • Flash Flood Warning
    Flash floods are occurring or expected to occur in the near future. If this happens, get to high ground immediately, and GET AWAY FROM VEHICLES... it only takes 18 inches of water to sweep a car or truck away!
  • High Wind Advisory
    Windy conditions may occur in the advisory area. This usually makes for unsafe conditions while driving, especially in (but not limited to) large vehicles. Also, avoid boating anywhere in the advisory area.
  • High Wind Warning
    Very strong winds are expected or already are occurring that present a significant danger while driving, boating and other outdoor activities. Often issued near tropical storms and hurricanes.
  • Special Marine Warning
    Warnings of interest to boaters, usually because of rough conditions, squall lines, waterspouts,
  • Hurricane or Tropical Storm Statement
    Statements issued periodically by the National Hurricane Center with an overview of the current situation.

Be Prepared for an Emergency. Be Red Cross Ready!

3/28/2017 (Permalink)

Red Cross Ready
Being prepared means being equipped with the proper supplies you may need in the event of an emergency or disaster. Keep your supplies in an easy-to-carry emergency preparedness kit that you can use at home or take with you in case you must evacuate.

At a minimum, you should have the basic supplies listed below:

  • Water: one gallon per person, per day (3-day supply for evacuation, 2-week supply for home)
  • Food: non-perishable, easy-to-prepare items (3-day supply for evacuation, 2-week supply for home).
  • Flashlight
  • Battery-powered or hand-crank radio (NOAA Weather Radio, if possible)
  • Extra batteries
  • First aid kit
  • Medications (7-day supply) and medical items
  • Multi-purpose tool
  • Sanitation and personal hygiene items
  • Copies of personal documents (medication list and pertinent medical information, proof of address, deed/lease to home, passports, birth certificates, insurance policies)
  • Cell phone with chargers
  • Family and emergency contact information
  • Extra cash
  • Emergency blanket
  • Map(s) of the area
Consider the needs of all family members and add supplies to your kit. Suggested items to help meet additional needs are:
  • Medical supplies (hearing aids with extra batteries, glasses, contact lenses, syringes, etc)
  • Baby supplies (bottles, formula, baby food, diapers)
  • Games and activities for children
  • Pet supplies (collar, leash, ID, food, carrier, bowl)
  • Two-way radios
  • Extra set of car keys and house keys
  • Manual can opener
Additional supplies to keep at home or in your survival kit based on the types of disasters common to your area:
  • Whistle
  • N95 or surgical masks
  • Matches
  • Rain gear
  • Towels
  • Work gloves
  • Tools/supplies for securing your home
  • Extra clothing, hat and sturdy shoes
  • Plastic sheeting
  • Duct tape
  • Scissors
  • Household liquid bleach
  • Entertainment items
  • Blankets or sleeping bags

Getting prepared may sound difficult or time consuming but – with a little help from the Red Cross – its actually very doable. Some of these items can be found here

Speed is Key

3/28/2017 (Permalink)

Storm Damage in Baton Rouge, LA

When your home or business has a water damage, it is essential to call a company that has the capacity to handle your damage and one that can provide you with IMMEDIATE response. At SERVPRO of Baldwin County, we pride ourselves on capacity and fast response.

Water Damage Timeline

Within Minutes:

  • Water quickly spreads throughout your property, saturating everything in its path.
  • Water is absorbed into walls, floors, upholstery, and belongings.
  • Furniture finishes may bleed, causing permanent staining on carpets.
  • Photographs, books, and other paper goods start to swell and warp.

Hours 1 - 24:

  • Drywall begins to swell and break down.
  • Metal surfaces begin to tarnish.
  • Furniture begins to swell and crack.
  • Dyes and inks from cloth and paper goods spread and stain.
  • A musty odor appears.

48 Hours to 1 Week:

  • Mold and mildew may grow and spread.
  • Doors, windows, and studs swell and warp.
  • Metal begins to rust and corrode.
  • Furniture warps and shows signs of mold.
  • Paint begins to blister.
  • Wood flooring swells and warps.
  • Serious biohazard contamination is possible.

More Than 1 Week:

  • Restoration time and cost increase dramatically; replacing contaminated materials and structural rebuilding may be extensive.
  • Structural safety, mold growth, and biohazard contaminants pose serious risks to occupants.

Have A Water Damage Emergency? Call SERVPRO of Baldwin County Today - 251-943-6244

When Storms or Floods hit Baldwin County, SERVPRO is ready!

3/23/2017 (Permalink)

Our highly trained crews are ready to respond 24/7 to storm or flood damage in Baldwin County, AL

SERVPRO of Baldwin County specializes in storm and flood damage restoration.  Our crews are highly trained and we use specialized equipment to restore your property to its pre-storm condition.


Faster Response


Since we are locally owned and operated, we are able to respond quicker with the right resources, which is extremely important. A fast response lessens the damage, limits further damage, and reduces the restoration cost.


Resources to Handle Floods and Storms


When storms hit Baldwin County, we can scale our resources to handle a large storm or flooding disaster. We can access equipment and personnel from a network of 1,650 Franchises across the country and elite Disaster Recovery Teams that are strategically located throughout the United States.


Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today 251-943-6244

Restoring Your Baldwin County, AL Commercial Property After A Water Damage Event

3/23/2017 (Permalink)

Commercial Water Damage Events Present Unique Challenges

Flooding and water damage events at Baldwin County commercial properties are often complex with numerous issues that require a knowledgeable and flexible response. Whether we’re dealing with a relatively small water cleanup scenario or a large scale event, we work quickly to assess each unique situation and isolate the damaged area. In many instances, normal operations can continue in a temporary space while we restore your facility.

Restoring Commercial Properties Presents Unique Challenges

Our professionals are trained to be mindful of legal and environmental concerns and strive to fully restore the damaged area while working within your budgetary constraints. We understand that every hour spent cleaning up is an hour of lost revenue and productivity. So when an emergency situation arises in your business, give us a call and we’ll be there fast with the help you need.

About SERVPRO of Baldwin County

SERVPRO of Baldwin County specializes in the cleanup and restoration of commercial and residential property after a water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.

Air Quality

1/13/2017 (Permalink)

This photo shows a return before cleaning ductwork.

Many of us are exposed to toxins everyday and we do not realize it. Toxins can cause short term allergies, illnesses, and they even cause us to age. Over time, exposure to toxins can have even more disastrous consequences. If you answer yes to any of the following, consider making a change to improve your home's air quality and lessen your exposure to toxins.

Healthy Home Checklist

  • Do you smoke in your home?
  • Do your kitchen, bathroom, and laundry room have adequate ventilation and exhaust fans?
  • Do you change your air filters once a month?
  • When cleaning or doing laundry, do you use bleach, ammonia or aerosol spray cans?
  • Is your gas fireplace and/or gas stove checked yearly for emissions?
  • Was your home built before 1978? If so, has it been checked for lead-based paint?
  • Do your bathrooms have carpet?

Causes of Indoor Air Pollution

  • Asbestos building products when dislodged (no longer intact)
  • Biological contaminants such as mold, dust, mites, viruses, and pet dander
  • Carbon Monoxide
  • Formaldehyde found in pressure treated wood
  • Lead (pre-1978 house paint)
  • Nitrogen dioxide
  • Particulates found in dust, pollen, cleaning sprays and poorly ventilated areas
  • Tobacco smoke
  • Volatile organic compounds including household cleaning products, pesticides, and aerosol propellants

The Truth about Mold

1/13/2017 (Permalink)

This mold damage was caused by an improperly working HVAC unit.

Mold spores are everywhere in our environment and can enter homes easily. Most types of mold grow quickly if they have a water source, an organic food source, and temperatures between 60 and 86 Fahrenheit. In South Alabama, mold grows especially easily in our warm, humid climate. 

An Institute of Medicine study found excessive dampness indoors is a public health problem by encouraging growth of molds, dust mites, and other organisms.

Control Moisture and Reduce Mold

  • Correct any water leaks or standing water.
  • Remove standing water under cooling coils or air handling units.
  • Replace washing machine hoses with steel mesh lines.
  • Move large objects away from the walls to provide good air circulation.
  • Use exhaust fans in bathrooms, kitchens, and laundry rooms.
  • Leave AC unit on when away from home 

7 Fall Home Maintenance Musts

11/15/2016 (Permalink)

Fall Leaves on the Beach

1.  Check for Peeling Paint:

Inspect exterior walls to see if any paint is peeling or blistering on the house or outbuildings. According to Carl Minchew, Director, Benjamin Moore Paints, "Peeling paint is a sign that the existing paint film is failing and can no longer protect the siding of the building. Left uncorrected, the siding itself will deteriorate, leading to expensive repairs in the future."

2. Clean the Gutters

 After leaves have fallen, clean out the gutters and downspouts, flush them with water, inspect joints, and tighten brackets if necessary
 
3. Seal Windows Up
 
If you feel any drafts around windows or doors, address them now to help keep your energy costs down. And, check your attic insulation, too.
 
4. Check Your Smoke and Carbon-Monoxide Detectors
 
Even ones that are powered through your home’s electrical system typically have a backup battery that might need replacing.
 
5. Check Your Roof
 
Remove moss from sloped areas and clear any debris from gutters and downspouts. Additionally, look for signs of damage/wear and make repairs as soon as possible. Use binoculars if you need to. Fall is no time for a leaky roof!
 
6. Fall Cleaning
 
Clean and tune your furnace, boiler and/or water heater, along with your oven and range.
 
7. Review Your Fire Escape Plan
 
Every bedroom, including basement bedrooms, should have two exit paths. Make sure windows aren't blocked by furniture or other items. Ideally, each upper-floor bedroom should have a rope ladder near the window for emergency exits. Review what to do in case of fire, and arrange a safe meeting place for everyone away from the house.
 
 

Common Causes of Fire Damage

8/16/2016 (Permalink)

SERVPRO Residential Fire

Home electrical fires account for 51,000 fires each year, and an estimated $1.3 billion in property damage. Learn these common causes of fire damage to prevent fire damage in your home or business:

Many electrical fires are caused by faulty electrical outlets or outdated appliances. Frayed appliance cords can also lead to electrical fires.  Under no circumstances should you ever remove the ground plug from an appliance cord. These appliance cords are only to be used with outlets that can handle the extra amount of electricity.

Another cause of electrical fires is the misuse of extension cords. Extension cords are only to be used on a temporary basis and not as permanent wiring. Extension cords can overheat and cause fires when not used properly. Never should you run extension cords through walls and ceilings, and never use nails or staples to hold an extension cord in place.

Space heaters are also a major cause of electrical fires. Space heaters should always be kept on a flat, level surface to prevent being turned over. These portable heaters are often placed too close to curtains, beds, and other combustible surfaces. Remember to always keep space heaters at least three feet from items that can burn. 

Storm Surge: After the Fact

8/11/2016 (Permalink)

Gulf coast pier during storm surge

In the midst of hurricane season, many homeowners on the gulf coast are preparing for the next storm. Hurricanes cause several problems, but one of the biggest complications of hurricane damage is the storm surge - more specifically, the salt water left behind following a storm surge. As Hurricanes move, they pick up salt water from the ocean and deposit that water inland causing flooded buildings and homes. This salt can easily penetrate building materials and electrical systems, making it very difficult to remove. Salt that has been suspended in water has an electrical charge – putting people at risk for electrical shock. The first step if your home or building has salt water damage is to shut off your electricity. Then call the experts in restoration at SERVPRO of Baldwin County.

Water Damage Restoration: Speed is Key

8/9/2016 (Permalink)

After the water was extracted in this beach home, we set equipment to help reduce secondary damages due water & moisture trapped in wall cavities.

What is Mitigation?

In its simplest form, mitigation is what we do to stop the damage that would occur if nothing is done following a water or fire damage. If not mitigated, water and contaminants that are the by-products of fire damage cause significantly more damage over time to the property. 

The primary goals of mitigation are the following:

  • stop the damage
  • save costs (decide whether items need to be restored or replaced)
  • get the home or business owner back to normal, faster.

The insured has a responsibility to mitigate even before the insurance adjuster and restorative drying vendor arrives; but, a property owner can only do so much. The restorative drying vendor should be ready for whatever happens.

Speed is Key

Fast response during the water damage is vital as significant damage to both structure and contents can occur as early as a few hours.

Speed is the key to effective mitigation, and effective mitigation saves time, headaches, and money.  

The primary reason to respond quickly is to avoid secondary damage. After the water is extracted and the area is sanitized, the drying equipment is set. The key to successful drying is creating a balanced drying system. Wood floors pose special problems for extraction as water becomes trapped under and between the planks. Water atop the wood floor is removed with a light squeegee wand but that below may need to be extracted by specialty drying equipment such as the mat system we see in this picture. Air movers direct airflow to the areas that are in need.

Choose a Quality Restoration Vendor

An effective mitigation company needs to be ready for whatever happens, and have the equipment needed to mitigate the loss as quickly as possible, regardless of the size and/or extent of the loss conditions.

At SERVPRO of Baldwin County, we understand the need to be faster to any size disaster. Call us and we will make your water or fire damage "Like it never even happened." 

Biohazard Cleanup: Specialized Skills Needed

8/9/2016 (Permalink)

Biohazard cleanup is also known as crime scene cleanup or trauma scene cleanup. Family members and friends of the crime scene victim may experience emotional trauma, sometimes overwhelming emotions, as they contemplate the site of the death or incident. Even cleaning technicians may experience strong feelings or reactions to a crime scene, despite having no acquaintance with the victim. In addition to the emotional factor, crime scene cleanup involves health hazards for anyone working at the site. Blood, body tissue, and decomposing body parts are associated with serious health risks from contact with contamination.  

Specialized Skills Needed

A professional trauma scene cleaner must develop some specialized skills that not all cleaning professionals are skilled at:

  •  Knowing how to work safely with hazardous waste materials.
  • Knowing how to clean up blood and body fluids from various types of building materials.
  • Knowing how to respond to customers who are experiencing traumatic circumstances. 

Consider the following cleaning situations. While most cleaners could perform the first two situations, only cleaners with these special skills are prepared for the last two situations.

  • Cleaning carpets in residential neighborhoods. ? Cleaning office chairs and cubicles in a commercial building.
  • Cleaning blood and broken windshield glass in an automobile from a traffic accident.
  • Cleaning blood and body parts from a gun shooting or suicide.

Biohazard cleanup technicians have to stay focused on the unique nature of their cleaning task. They are cleaning and restoring the site of a traumatic event. They are performing an invaluable service to the customer. Their cleaning activities may be beneficial to the customer’s ongoing reaction to the trauma. Their cleanup will help the customer recover in a small way from the aftermath of the event.

While technicians should strive to perform their best on all cleaning projects, they should especially seek a high-level performance when conducting trauma scene cleanup. An effective, thorough cleanup is what the customer needs to help them move beyond the memories of the trauma event. 

Detecting Water Damage

7/22/2016 (Permalink)

Thermal imaging can detect cooler temperatures in materials. Cooler temperatures are usually a sign of water damage as was the case in this picture.

Water damage can happen when you least expect it. Standing water is one thing, but, what happens with the water that you don't see? And, what happens if there is too much water to clean up?

Detecting Water Damage

With water damage, it's the water you don't see that causes the most damage. It is no surprise that water damage that has not been properly mitigated can lead to microbial growth and mold. After a water damage, it is important to have the entire area checked for moisture in order to prevent more extensive damage, and ultimately, more expensive repairs. If you've noticed water damage, call your local SERVPRO professional. We will be able to determine if the moisture levels in the home are normal. If they are not, we will show you where the moisture is found, develop a scope of how the site should be properly mitigated, and update you daily with drying progress. 

Call SERVPRO

There is no such thing as a small disaster. A small leak now can turn into a large damage if not properly remediated. By using a quality restoration team like SERVPRO of Baldwin County, that unexpected water damage will stay a thing of the past. If you have a water damage, call the team that is faster to any size disaster.

Water Damage from Contaminated Water: Do & Don't

7/12/2016 (Permalink)

Heavy rains brought significant flooding to the Mississippi Delta in March 2016. The water remained high for 3 weeks.

What is Contaminated Water?

As defined by the IICRC, Category 3 water is water that which is highly contaminated and could cause death or serious illness if consumed by humans. Examples: sewage, rising flood waters from rivers and streams, ground surface water flowing horizontally into homes. There are two ways in which water can enter a building through wind or storm damage. The first involves falling or windblown rainwater that enters as a result of damage to roof components or wall assempblies. The second involves horizontally traveling ground surface water (Category 3) containing silt and soil contaminants that infiltrate into structures, generally through doors or around foundation walls. 

If you find your home or building affected by contaminated water, we've listed a few of our favorite tips for what to do and what not to do after a water damage.

Do

Avoid all contact with sewage and items contaminated by sewage.

Wash your hands thoroughly after contact with contaminated items.

Contact a restoration professional such as SERVPRO of Baldwin County.

Don't

Spread contaminated water by walking unnecessarily on damaged or wet carpets.

Turn on HVAC system if there is a possibility of spreading contaminated air.

Use household fans to dry the structure and spread contaminants.

Use products for personal hygiene and cleanliness if exposed to the contaminated areas.

Note

If exposed to harmful waste, OSHA recommends a post-exposure medical evaluation. Consult your local health department or physician.

Water Damage from Clean Water: What Not to Do

6/24/2016 (Permalink)

Don't:

  • Enter rooms with standing water where electrical shock hazards may exist.
  • Enter affected areas if electrical outlets, switches, circuit breakers or electrical equipment have been exposed to or are submerged in water. Always avoid electrical shock hazards.
  • Leave books, newspapers, magazines or other colored items on wet carpets or floors as this could potentially cause staining.
  • Leave Oriental rugs or any other rugs on the floor on wet wall-to-wall carpets to cause staining.
  • Use your household vacuum cleaner to remove water, possibly causing electrical shock to yourself or damage to the vacuum cleaner.
  • Use TVs or other appliances while standing on wet carpets or floors, and especially not on wet concrete flooring.
  • Turn on ceiling fixtures if the ceiling is wet or enter rooms where ceilings are sagging from retained water.

Water Damage from Clean Water: What to Do

6/24/2016 (Permalink)

A pipe burst caused this office to flood.

Do:

  • Shut off the source of water if possible or contact a qualified party to stop the water source.
  • Turn off circuit breakers for wet areas of the building, when access to the power distribution panel is safe from electrical shock.
  • Remove as much exess water as possible by mopping and blotting.
  • Wipe excess water from wood furniture after removing lamps and tabletop items.
  • Remove and prop up wet upholstery cushions for even drying.
  • Place aluminum foil or wood blocks between furniture legs and wet carpeting.
  • Remove to a safe, dry place any paintings, art objects, computers, documents and other materials that are valuable or sensitive to moisture.
  • Use wooden clothespins to keep furniture skirting off damp floors.
  • Hang draperies with coated hangers to avoid contact with wet carpeting or floors.
  • Hang furs and leather goods to dry separately at room temperature.

2016 Hurricane Preparedness Expo in Gulf Shores, AL

6/17/2016 (Permalink)

Yesterday, we participated in the 2016 Hurricane Preparedness Expo in Gulf Shores, AL put on by the City of Gulf Shores.

Yesterday, we participated in the 2016 Hurricane Preparedness Expo in Gulf Shores, AL put on by the City of Gulf Shores. If you weren't able to make it, take a look at some of our tips below:

Prepare your home:

  • Cover all of your home's windows with precut plywood or hurricane shutters to protect your windows from high winds.
  • Plan to bring in all outdoor furniture, decorations, garbage cans and anything else that is not tied down.
  • Keep all tree and shrubs will trimmed so they are more wind resistant.
  • Turn off utilities as instructed. Otherwise, turn the refrigerator thermostat to its coldest setting and keep its doors closed.
  • Turn off propane tanks.
  • Ensure a supply of water for sanitary purposes such as cleaning and flushing toilets. Fill the bathtub and other large containers with water.

Prepare your business:

  • Carefully assess how your company functions, both internally and externally, to determine which staff, materials, procedures and equipment are absolutely necessary to keep the business operating.
  • Identify operations critical to survival and recovery.
  • Plan what you will do if your building is not accessible.
    • Consider if you can run the business from a different location or from your home.
    • Develop relationships with other companies to use their facilities in case a disaster makes your location unstable.
  • Ask your local SERVPRO representative about setting up your free ERP (Emergency Ready Plan)

We hope you are able to use these tips in the event of a disaster; however, we know that some times, weather can take us by surprise. If you aren't able to prepare, please remember that as your local SERVPRO, we are "Ready for whatever happens." When the storm is a major event, you need more comprehensive restoration support. SERVPRO knows fast mitigation is the key. SERVPRO is faster to any size diaster and can be on-site within a few hours to help reduce the future damage water can cause. We have the right equipment, procedures and training to help ensure the structure is dry the first time, saving you time and money. When the storm rolls out, we roll in. 

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