Recent Posts

SERVPRO: An Insurance Adjuster’s Best Friend

2/18/2019 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO SERVPRO: An Insurance Adjuster’s Best Friend SERVPRO of Leawood/Overland Park is an industry leader in disaster mitigation and restoration

An Insurance Adjuster’s Best Friend

As an insurance adjuster in the Prairie Village, KS, area, you depend on the efficiency of others so that you can help move a client past a possibly traumatic event. SERVPRO is an industry leader in disaster mitigation and restoration and has the reputation to prove it. However, beyond reputation, this company has the coveted IICRC certification proving their knowledge and ability, but beyond that, there are several ways that this firm can serve you and your clients.

1. Immediate Response

SERVPRO is built on the premise of 24/7 availability. As an adjuster, you understand that quick response times for mitigation can mean the difference between a smooth insurance claim process and a difficult one. Properties must be boarded up, tarped and possibly even fenced off to ensure that sustained damage is not made worse.

2. Pretest

Additionally, pretesting ensures accurate estimates and assessments. An insurance adjuster understands that accuracy is everything, especially if it means the difference between condemning a property or repairing it.

3. Electronic and Inventory Services

Also, you will be provided with an itemized loss inventory by SERVPRO’s technicians upon completion of mitigation and clean out. This will be a digital excel formatted report with pictures to assist in the creation of a proof or loss statement.

4. Vendor Compliance

Any outside vendors working on your client’s home have also had to prove compliance with the company’s qualification standards. This compliance means that your clients will experience continuity of care and professionalism throughout their restoration experience.

As an insurance adjuster, you have enough on your plate with trying to assist clients through one of the most challenging times in their lives, the loss or damage of their home. You don’t need to be inundated with concerns of inaccuracies or unprofessionalism. Your clients don’t need to worry about the consistency of care or contractors that are not dependable. Seek out a restoration company that is IICRC certified and that holds their vendors to a hirer standard so that you and your client can rest assured that their home is in good hands.

The Most Effective Sandbag Alternatives

2/13/2019 (Permalink)

Sandbags can be heavy and messy to fill. Commercial property owners seeking more convenient ways to limit flood damage should consider one or more of the following sandbag alternatives.

Absorbent Materials

Some materials are designed to absorb fresh or flood water and act as barriers. Several styles for absorbent flood control are currently available:

  • Crystallized polymer
  • Powder-filled barriers
  • Self-inflating sand-less bags

These porous flood dams are intended for one-time use and should be disposed of after each flood event. All of these options are easier to deploy than sandbags.

Water-Filled Barriers

Filling a water barrier can be easier than filling a sandbag. There are several different styles of water-filled barriers to choose from:

  • Baffle systems
  • Cofferdams
  • Modular blocks
  • Tube designs

These designs are available in a wide range of sizes. Unlike some flood control materials with fillers that become contaminated, these barriers can be reused multiple times.

Self-Stabilizing Barriers

Self-stabilizing barriers are easy to use to keep flood waters away from a structure. Some of these options are better suited for blocking entrances or windows, while others can be set up in longer runs to keep flood water out of a larger area. Most of these designs can be reused many times.

Levee Machines

Machines are also available to quickly fill bags with sand. The same materials used to make sandbags are needed, with the exception of a shovel. It will also be necessary to either hire or train a crew to safely use this machinery prior to a flood.

All of these sandbag alternatives are relatively easy to use. A property owner may want to invest in a reusable flood prevention solution to limit the amount of water that enters a commercial structure in Leawood, KS. If water breaches the barriers and causes damage, contact a flood damage mitigation and restoration company.

How To Prepare for a Home Fire When You Have Pets

2/5/2019 (Permalink)

Fire Damage How To Prepare for a Home Fire When You Have Pets Remember to include your pet in your fire escape plan

How to Prepare For a Fire Emergency

The thought of a fire in your home in Overland Park, KS can be scary, especially if you have pets. However, being prepared for the worst can help you react appropriately if a fire emergency does occur.

1. Take Precautions 

Although not all fires are preventable, it’s often wise to do what you can to prevent a fire from occurring in your home by focusing on pet safety. If your pets roam around the house while you are away, making sure to keep away potential fire hazards out of reach from your pets can be helpful. Since not all fire hazards can be easily moved, it’s often best to keep pets in an area where they do not have access to potentially dangerous items while you are out of your house.

2. Make a Plan 

Knowing how to react in the event of a fire emergency is important for everyone, but it’s especially important when you have pets. Make a plan of escape and know how to escape your home if your first route of escape is blocked off. After you have a plan, it’s useful to frequently practice this plan. If a fire does occur, having a plan in place can save you time and energy and can ultimately keep you and your pets safe.

3. Prepare Documentation

Part of pet preparation involves updating documents about your pets and keeping them in a fire-resistant container. If your pet does need veterinary care after a fire, having all of your pet’s documents in one place can save you a great deal of stress. Additionally, placing a sticker on a window at the entrance of your home that includes the number of pets in your home can be beneficial for firefighters when entering your home.

Taking steps to prevent a fire from occurring, making a fire escape plan and preparing documents that pertain to your pets can help you prepare for a fire. If a fire emergency has affected you and your home, it may be useful to contact fire damage restoration experts.

One Misstep in Your Vacation Planning May Result in Costly Damage

1/23/2019 (Permalink)

Water Damage One Misstep in Your Vacation Planning May Result in Costly Damage A water leak caused to this property an amount of water damage

When you plan a vacation, you stress over every little detail. You plan your flights so that you have enough time between connections to account for delays and terminal transfers. You pack one or two cold weather outfits even though you're going to the tropics, just in case. You fill your toiletries bag with vials of medicine, even though neither you nor any of your family members get sick very often. You're more than ready for a week out of the cold, or are you? If you haven't thought about the possibility of a broken pipe and preventing the need for a water pipe repair, you are not prepared.

7 Steps To Preventing Costly Damage

Frozen pipes often lead to extensive and costly water damage throughout the whole home. If an exterior pipe freezes, it can cause a backup in all your pipes. As the pressure builds up, it will look for a way to escape. Typically, escape involves finding weak spots in your pipes and bursting them. You can prevent this who process from happening by doing the following:

  1. Inspect all your pipes and water appliances for leaks, cracks or fissures. If you discover a weak spot, perform a water pipe repair with caulk or plumbers' tape.
  2. Check all the hoses on your washing machine, dishwasher, refrigerator, and other appliances. Unkink any kinks.
  3. Clear your gutters of debris.
  4. Examine your sump pump to ensure that it is in good working order. If you have the means, invest in a backup just in case your basement does become flooded while you're gone.
  5. Insulate exposed pipes and shut off the water supply to pipes that lead outdoors and that you're not currently using. Be sure to drain them as well.
  6. Have a friend, family member or neighbor come over to check on your home while you're gone.
  7. If no one can check on your home, turn off the water at the main. Drain the pipes and leave cupboards under the sink open to allow heat in.

When Your Pipes Do Burst

If your pipes burst regardless of your efforts, contact a Leawood, KS, water restoration team. You may also need to call in a plumber to perform an extensive water pipe repair.

Mold Prevention: 3 Common Sources of Excessive Dampness

1/23/2019 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation Mold Prevention: 3 Common Sources of Excessive Dampness Mold can grow quickly, it is important to contact a professional for quick remediation

Dealing with mold in Prairie Village, KS, after it has already started to grow in your home is an extremely frustrating process. Your best line of action is to prioritize mold prevention and avoid the mess altogether! Since mold depends on water or moisture to survive, the key to preventing mold growth is moisture management. Here a few common sources of excess moisture to look out for.

Common Household Items

While people often think mold is caused by some severe issue within their home, sometimes the root of the problem is common household items they use regularly. Here are a few common culprits:

  • Humidifiers
  • Wet clothes
  • Trash cans
  • Household plants

Mold prevention starts with proper moisture control within your home. By keeping your humidifier at low levels, only using clothes lines outdoors, quickly taking out the trash, and not overwatering plants, you can help maintain optimal humidity levels in your home.

Leaking Pipes and Roofs

When left undetected, leaking pipes and roofs can cause serious water damage to your home that will quickly allow mold to grow. Regular maintenance and inspections of pipes in your home and your roof is essential for detecting leaks before they become a major problem. As soon as you notice any issues, it is a good idea to immediately get in contact with a water damage specialist.

Poor Ventilation

A poorly ventilated home traps moisture indoors and increases the humidity levels in your home. This is especially problematic in bathrooms and kitchens where large amounts of steam are released into the air on a daily basis. Using a bathroom fan or opening windows in is an effective way to let evaporated water escape from your home before mold can grow.

As you can see, mold prevention is a much simpler process than trying to combat mold that has already started to grow. While there are several causes of mold growth to look out for, checking out these common sources of mold are a great place to start!

3 Ways To Clean Contents After a Fire

1/11/2019 (Permalink)

Commercial 3 Ways To Clean Contents After a Fire Soot damage in Overland Park, KS

3 Ways To Clean Contents After a Fire

Even without catastrophic structural damage, a fire can wreak havoc on your property. From smoke damage, to water damage from firefighting efforts, there’s a surprisingly long list of ways that fires create a mess. The good news is there are lots of options for cleaning up your content, from elaborate fire restoration to simple dry-cleaning. Here are a few of the ways you can get your Overland Park, KS, property back to normal.

Fire damage typically evokes thoughts of broken windows and burnt through roofs. But fire damage also often includes:

  • Smoke damaged clothing and personal property
  • Water logged carpets and furniture
  • Soot stained upholstery and carpeting

And that’s just for starters. Fortunately, there are professionals there to help.

Dry-Cleaning

This simple process is one of the easiest ways to handle smoke damage. Drapes and other fabrics can be dry cleaned in place to remove the pervasive smell of smoke, soot and burned goods as well as getting rid of stains. Be sure to choose a fire restoration or textile restoration company that specializes in fire damage for the best results.

Fire Remediation

This typically involves removing water - an important part of ensuring your business is safe for use. Water that gets beneath carpet pads and festers in walls can become a breeding ground for mold. Fire remediation firms use suction devices and industrial dryers to get rid of every drop.

Cleanup Services

Typically offered as an add on to remediation, cleanup services focus more on cleaning, deodorizing and restoring personal property. This can include spray and wipe cleaning, foam cleaning, abrasive cleaning, immersion and much more.

Cleaning up plays a big part of getting back to normal after a business fire. Fortunately, it’s not something you have to tackle yourself. Contract with experts in dry-cleaning, content storage and other fire content cleaning and your property will be as good as new.

How Do You Care for Wet Items After Water Damage?

12/26/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage How Do You Care for Wet Items After Water Damage? Bathroom flooding in an Overland Park, KS home

Steps to Keep Your Items Safe After Water Damage

When you have water in your home in Overland Park, KS, it is likely that some of your belongings will be affected by the water. There are certain steps you can take in order to keep your items safe.

1. Eliminate the Source of Water

Before you can begin to assess what damage has occurred and start taking care of your items, you should make sure that water does not continue to flood your home if possible. If the water is coming from a broken pipe, for example, turning off the water entirely is likely the quickest way to stop the flow of water. By stopping the source of water, you can prevent additional items from becoming damaged.

2. Allow Items to Dry

Once the water in your home has been removed, you may be tempted to start moving items and cleaning what has been damaged immediately. However, some of your belongings may need to dry before they can be restored. For example, documents and photographs should be handled when dry in order to prevent further damage, cushions and cloth items can be more manageable to move when dry.

3. Appropriately Sanitize Items

When the area affected by water is dry in your home, you can begin make a better assessment of what can be cleaned and what should be replaced. Items that are not badly damaged and that are not affected by mold may only require dry cleaning, which is a relatively quick process. However, you may need to use strong cleaning products on items if they have been left in standing water. When choosing how to sanitize your belongings, it’s often helpful to make sure you are using the appropriate product on each item.

Knowing the appropriate steps to take if water in your home has damaged items can help you feel more prepared. As you begin to clean your personal belongings, it may be helpful to contact water damage professionals who can help to restore your home and your belongings.

Smoke Alarms: Maintaining Performance

12/26/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Smoke Alarms: Maintaining Performance Contact a fire remediation specialist in the Leawood, KS area to get your alarm installed

Smoke Alarms: Maintaining Performance

A smoke alarm may be the last defense you have to ensure that you and your family are safe in a disaster. Therefore, it is vital that all your alarms are correctly installed and regularly tested. If you are not confident in your ability to install these items, you can call a fire remediation specialist in the Leawood, KS, area who may be able to assist you. Beyond installation, you will want to ensure that you are maintaining you alarms appropriately. Depending on your chosen detectors, the maintenance schedule can vary.

1. Nine-Volt Battery Powered Detectors

As an affordable smoke detector option, nine-volt powered detectors will require monthly inspections and tests, you should make sure that the alarm is clean and free of debris, and you should test the signal by pressing the test button. Also, you should replace the batteries annually to ensure proper functionality. Additionally, it is recommended that you replace these alarms every 10 years.

2. Long-Life Alarms

A long-life smoke alarm typically refers to detectors that use a 10-year lithium battery. As these batteries should not be replaced, it is recommended that the entire unit is replaced in accordance with the manufacturer’s guidelines. However, you should test the alarm and ensure it is free of cobwebs and dust at least once per month.

3. Hardwired Fire Signals

Hardwired fire signals are connected directly into your homes electrical system, which provides an added sense of security because the units can communicate with each other, sounding alarms throughout the residence. This type of alarm should be tested monthly and replaced every 10 years. Additionally, the battery backup should be replaced annually.

Fire damage is one of the worst fears of many homeowners because of the risk to their property and the potential loss of life. A smoke alarm provides reassurance because it can alert and thereby protect a home’s inhabitants. However, depending on the type of alarm, each signal requires a certain amount of upkeep to maintain performance.

Explaining Certification Standards

12/26/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial Explaining Certification Standards Our technicians undergo extensive water restoration training and certification through an IICRC approved school.

Explaining Certification Standards

If you find yourself in the midst of a water clean up scenario in Prairie Village, KS, the options can be overwhelming. Many professional restoration services exist to serve a variety of needs, but not all are accredited for the same tasks by the same agencies. The following information may help you choose the right company for your business restoration needs.

1. ANSI

The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) is an agency that manages and documents a large number of standards across a variety of professional disciplines. It is a non-profit entity and has no legally-binding authority. However, many of the standards originated from and maintained by ANSI have been adopted by local, state and federal agencies. Though conformity with ANSI standards is voluntary, compliance is frequently beneficial because it facilitates communication with consumers and other businesses.

2. IICRC

The Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) is one such ANSI member organization. This is the relevant agency for most water clean up situations. The IIRC standards cover a number of dependent domains, such as the relevant codes for flooring restoration, fire and smoke damage, mold contamination and many others.

3. BSR-IICRC S550

The BSR-IICRC S550 describes the standards for professional water damage restoration of commercial structures. This would be the bureau most relevant for the water damage that might result from a broken pipe in your place of business. If you are seeking a professional cleanup service to stop water retention and dry sensitive materials, compliance with this specific IICRC standard is likely the best way to gauge the capabilities of the company.

Navigating the maze of acronyms involved in selecting a water clean up specialist can be daunting, but the relevant information is fairly simple to obtain. Keep your business in order by understanding the standards that restoration services use to repair and replace the vital components of your property.

4 Potential Issues With a Partial Loss

11/28/2018 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO 4 Potential Issues With a Partial Loss Aftermath of a fire in Prairie Village,KS

Restoration Process After Fire Loss in Your Building

Your building in Prairie Village, KS, doesn't have to burn completely to suffer a fire loss. That doesn't mean that restoration isn't needed, though. Even if areas of your commercial property are not burned, they can still show signs of smoke or soot damage or secondary damage such as mold. Any time you have a fire in your building, you need to stay aware of four potential problems with the restoration process.

1. Insufficient Cleanup

The first call you should make after a fire is to fire restoration experts. Don't just choose the first company listed, though. Do your homework and choose certified professionals with good reviews and a good service record. Shoddy repair is not much better than no repair at all.

2. Delayed Assessment

Even if you call experts for an assessment right after the damage occurs, it may take a while for your insurance adjuster to visit the site, especially if the company has other clients with more pressing issues. If this happens, you should still hire technicians to halt any ongoing damage to your building. Make sure to document the original damage with photos or video footage and an itemized list of everything that needed repair or replacement.

3. Additional Damage

A partial fire loss often leaves sneaky problems in the building. Make sure that you have air ducts and cabinets inspected for hidden smoke damage. It is also a good idea to have the area tested for mold growth, particularly if it sustained a lot of water saturation.

4. Unmatched Finish

Another benefit of hiring quality professionals is that they restore you property to a uniform look. This often involves replacing flooring, ceiling tiles, walls or wallpaper that wasn't damaged by the fire so that the whole room looks the same. A room with matching issues should not be considered a proper restoration.

Even if a small portion of your building is affected by the fire, you still must take repairs seriously. By treating a partial loss as a complete problem, you can bypass some of the common issues that occur when only part of your building is damaged.