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Tips For Winterizing Your Home

12/3/2018 (Permalink)

Winterizing Your Home

Fall is finally here! The leaves are changing, there’s a crisp coolness in the air, and our favorite pumpkin spiced-flavored treats line store shelves once more. We all look forward to fall’s festivities, and now that Halloween is over the winter Holidays are approaching fast. You have just a few weeks left to prepare your home for winter. Preparing can help ensure you’re cozying up by the fireside worry-free once cold weather rolls around. 

Decorating and meal-prepping might be the first things on your mind when it comes to preparing your home for the colder months Here are important fall maintenance tips that can make all the difference once winter’s first freeze hits.

  1. Clear out your gutters

All those colorful leaves falling from the trees sure are pretty — but they also pile up pretty quickly in your home’s gutters.

Even if you have gutter guard silt or excess debris can lead to clogs (or ice dams in wintery conditions), which can prevent gutters from draining properly. In turn, there’s a chance water could seep into your home since it has nowhere else to escape to, causing a multitude of issues like damage to your valuables, mold growth, and even structural rot.

Before winter hits, clear your house’s gutters of leaves and any other debris that might’ve accumulated during the summer months. It also helps to run water through the gutters afterward to check for any leaks or misalignments that could damage your home. Don’t forget to check the down spouts.

  1. Inspect for air leaks

Things like damaged weather stripping and small cracks in your home’s structure allow warm air to escape, causing your heater to go into overdrive to keep your place warm.

The solution to your chilly house and high utility bills is pretty simple: before it gets wintery outside, inspect your home’s windows, doorways, and any other places where air might be able to enter or exit.

You can use caulking to stop leaks in the stationary components of your home (like a crack in your doorframe) and weather stripping to insulate the moving components (like windows and doors).

  1. Have your heating system checked

Home just doesn’t feel like home if a malfunctioning heater is leaving you with the chills. And in parts of the country with freezing temps, it can be a much more serious situation.

That’s why it’s wise to have a licensed contractor come out to inspect your heater at least once a year, especially before the weather outside becomes frightful. Ask about the condensate drain line. “Is it clear?” “Is there an operating float switch?” Consider a moister detector that will alarm if water gets more than a 16th of an inch deep. This will let you know you have a potential problem.

  1. Prepare your pipes

Get to know where the pipelines in your house are located and make sure to inspect them every autumn (at least).

Simply patch any small leaks with heat tape to help reduce weaknesses that might cause the pipe to burst in freezing weather. And you can further protect any exposed outdoor pipes by insulating them with foam or rubber pipe wraps, which can be found at your local hardware store.

For larger leaks or pipeline problems, it’s always a good idea to play it safe and call the pros.

Also prepare them when you leave for the long weekend to Grandma’s Turn the main valve off it can be the difference between a $800 repair and on in the tens of thousands of dollars. When you come back turn on slowly to prevent a sudden increase in pressure known as water hammer.

  1. Drain any outside faucets and irrigation systems 

Speaking of bursting pipes, it’s important to pay attention to the water systems immediately outside your place too. Undrained water in outdoor faucets and irrigation systems can expand when frozen and cause a pipe to burst.

Draining faucets is simple enough: just pack away your garden hoses in the garage for the winter and let out any remaining water — easy as that!

Irrigation systems, on the other hand, often vary in the way they should be maintained. It’s best to call a professional who has experience with underground water systems, just to cover all your bases.

  1. Have your roof inspected

For your safety, a full-blown roof inspection should be done professionally. The cost to hire an inspector can be as low as a little over $200 and can prevent seriously hefty repair expenses down the line if a winter storm wreaks havoc on your roof and you don’t have sufficient insurance coverage to cover repair costs.

Cut branches that overhang the roof or rubbing against the roof this can damage and cause problems for your home as well

Reinforcing and protecting your roof now can help you avoid a whole host of hazards, like air and water leaks, water damage, mold, and more — all of which could put a damper on your seasonal festivities (and your wallet).

  1. Restock cold-weather home essentials

Key items like rock salt or kitty litter, snow shovels, space heaters, extra batteries, and heated blankets can help make your home both more functional and comfortable during wintertime. Stock up on these helpful winter wares ahead of time to help avoid any extra hassle or stress come holiday season. You can also be prepared with a ready kit like the ones available at the Red Cross 

Related link: Tips for Before, During, and After a Winter Power Outage

  1. Take a peek at your homeowners insurance

Believe it or not, your homeowner’s policy could come to the rescue for a whole host of cold-weather mishaps. Whether a hailstorm leaves holes in your roof, a vandal breaks into your home and destroys valuables while you’re out holiday shopping, or the weight of snow and ice results in structural damage to your house, homeowners insurance could help pay to repair or replace your losses. Have a conversation with your agent about the “what if’s” and what you should be covered for.  

If you do all these and still have a Fire, Water, or Mold Damage to your home or business, call SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe. We make it “Like it never even happened." 

Locally Owned Company with National Resources


As a locally owned and operated business, SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe is strategically located to respond quickly to your Fire Emergency. When an emergency occurs in Grosse Pointe, Grosse Pointe Farms, Grosse Pointe Park, Grosse Pointe Woods, Harper Woods, Warren, Madison Heights or Detroit, we have the resources and personnel to help. Call us today! (313) 882-5499

Quickly Identifying and Remediating Mold in Your Home

12/3/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation Quickly Identifying and Remediating Mold in Your Home This is mold from water damage on a ceiling. SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe has the resources & personnel to help get your home or business back together.

Identifying Mold & Mildew In your House

Quickly Identifying and Remediating Mold in Your Home

Mold causes the deterioration of organic matter. Dampness creates ideal conditions for mold, and it feeds off of organic materials such as drywall, wood or cloth. After water damage has occurred, mold can begin growing in as quickly as two days.

This means that standing water needs to be removed and cleaned up as soon as you notice it. This eliminates the ideal growing conditions that allow for mold to take root.

You should always hire a company, like SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe, that has undergone extensive training and is certified in IICRC-the most trusted certification for mold removal.

Their training includes the ability to:

– Determine where water is coming from
– Identify the presence of mold
– Ensure mold does not spread any further
– Remediate mold
– Utilize thorough drying techniques to ensure mold does not return
– Restore property or advise on methods necessary to do so

Identifying the Mold

Mold has no set appearance and it can be any number of colors, including black, gray, white, green or pink.

One sure sign is visible identification of mold. But if the mold is unusual-looking you might not even realize what you are seeing. Mold can form in clusters or spots and it can grow in places you may not be able to see.

Determining the Presence of Mold

Our experts can find mold wherever it may be hiding. They know which signs to look for to determine if mold is present. These include:

– Visible signs of mold
– Musty odors
– Humid conditions
– Signs of long-term dampness
– Stained or discolored floors and walls
– Peeled paint and bubbling wallpaper
– Warped walls and bowed supports
– Damp surfaces

What Causes Mold?

Mold is likely growing in your home if you have moisture there. Many types of moisture problems can lead to mold growth. These include damp clothing, leaky pipes, roof leaks, a lack of ventilation, floods, water in the basement, and condensation.

Locally Owned Company with Valuable Resources

As a locally owned and operated business, SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe is strategically located to respond quickly to your water damage emergency and your mold cleanup. When there is mold in a home or business in Grosse Pointe, Grosse Pointe Farms, Grosse Pointe Woods, Harper Woods, Warren, or Madison Heights, we have the resources and personnel to help get your home or business back together. Call us today! (313) 882-5499

What To Do In A Water Damage Emergency

12/3/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage What To Do In A Water Damage Emergency A Water Damage Emergency is a serious and scary thing. Make sure to call SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe to get your home or business restored to how it was!

What to Do in a Water Damage Emergency

In the event that a water damage emergency strikes your home, it is essential to have a plan so you minimize the time it takes to restore your home. Being prepared for a water damage emergency is the best thing you can do to minimize its negative effects. Once a water damage emergency hits, you can do several things to mitigate your downtime, the biggest of which is hiring a professional water damage restoration company, like SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe.

What Is a Water Damage Emergency?

A water damage emergency is any event that causes catastrophic water damage to your home. It may be a flood or the aftermath of a fire. If it causes your home to lose power—or require it to be shut off— exposes several large portions of your home to the outside world, or you are otherwise unable to stay in your home, you have a water damage emergency.

Hiring SERVPRO Helps in a Water Damage Emergency

Your biggest concern during a water damage emergency is the time it takes to get your home habitable again. The fastest way to achieve this is to hire a professional water damage restoration company, like SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe. We can dispatch several restoration crew members and/or subcontractors at once, who can begin work on many different matters simultaneously. Professional contractors have access to the appropriate equipment, years of experience, and the training necessary to make short work of any water damage emergency you have.

Consult Your Insurance Provider during a Water Damage Emergency

In a water damage emergency, you should contact your insurance provider. Depending on the extent of the damage and the extent of your homeowner’s insurance policy, your insurance company may be able to cover some or all of the costs associated with restoring your home.

A water damage emergency is a devastating event that can take days or weeks to resolve. During this time, you should hire SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe to enter your home and repair the damage. You may need to relocate temporarily if the damage is severe enough to turn off your electricity. Unfortunately, a water damage emergency is difficult to prepare for, because it can occur in so many different ways, and most resolutions are reactive instead of proactive. For more information about what to do in a water damage emergency, you can contact your insurance provider or you can call us, SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe, 313-882-5499.

Locally Owned Company with National Resources

As a locally owned and operated business, SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe is strategically located to respond quickly to your water damage emergency. When water damage occurs in Grosse Pointe, Grosse Pointe Farms, Grosse Pointe Woods, Harper Woods, Warren, or Madison Heights, we have the resources and personnel to help get your home or business back together. Call us today! (313) 882-5499

Water Damage Clean Up Tips for a Broken Pipe In Your Home

1/17/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Water Damage Clean Up Tips for a Broken Pipe In Your Home A broken pipe and the water damage clean up that it causes is the nightmare of every homeowner.

Water Damage Clean Up Tips for a Broken Pipe In Your Home

A broken pipe and the water damage clean up that it causes is the nightmare of every homeowner. Even a broken sink pipe with a small amount of water can do significant damage in a short period of time. What should you do when you are unfortunate enough to experience this crisis?  Here are some tips for water damage clean up when you discover a broken pipe.

The first thing that you should do is find the source of the water damage is and stop the flow of additional water from entering your home. The more water the bigger the water damage clean up and more extensive the problem.  It's easy to figure out when you've left a faucet on or a hard rain has filled your basement. But if you have a broken pipe that has burst that can’t be seen, you must turn off the water supply to your home as quickly as possible.

As a safety precaution, be sure to turn off the electrical power to the section of the home where the water damage has occurred. Electricity and water don’t mix!

After the panic has subsided and before you start your water damage cleanup, you want to assess the level of damage to your home. If you have a limited amount of apparent water damage, there are many things that you can do yourself. But if carpeting, rugs, tile, drywall and the ceiling below have been saturated call a professional water restoration company, like SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe, immediately. You need to be in damage control mode and understand you are racing against the clock.

It is important to understand that you have a lot of work ahead of you to fix your water damage problem. Calling the professional water restoration experts at SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe can save you headaches and help you settle with your insurance company.

Now, assuming you can manage the water damage cleanup on your own, the first step is to get fresh air moving through area. Simply open windows and turn on as many fans as possible to get the air flowing throughout the house. This is will help dry the area, and will also help to reduce odors later on.

Next, start a dehumidifier running as quickly as possible to take moisture out of the air. Along with the fans, this will help accelerate your water damage clean-up efforts by removing the water quickly. Be sure to check the reservoir tank often and empty it regularly. It is a necessary to run your dehumidifier until things are completely dry to avoid the conditions where mold and mildew can grow.

The next step is very important and will save hassles later. Take some photos of the damaged areas as evidence for your insurance claim. Like any accident, documentation is critical and gives you proof that will put you in the best position possible when settling your claim.

Following these three important steps, go through your belongings that were affected by the water. Sort through any papers, books, photos and keepsakes and inspect for damage. If they are not valuable and ruined, throw them away. You can make photocopies of most paperwork and then throw it away. If valuables have been damaged, you can place them in a freezer food bag and freeze them until you can consult with a member of our team to see if they can be saved.

Next, you'll want to get out a wet/dry vac and suck up as much of the water as possible from the water damaged areas. This will be especially helpful for carpeted areas, upholstered furniture and even tile or wood floors. Continue this process until you have gotten the bulk of the water damage cleaned up and there is no water appearing in the vacuum catch basin. This will take a great deal of time and effort, so be patient and persistent.

It is important to note that wood surfaces that have been affected by the water are more urgent than carpeted areas. Wood is porous and can soak up the water, causing warping and delaminating. It is a good idea to remove the water as quickly as possible and then use fans and a dehumidifier on around these areas first.

Most broken pipe situations and the water damage clean up it requires affect the drywall board in walls and ceilings. If you have drywall damage as a result of the water, you are going to have to inspect and repair it quickly. As a general rule, it will be enough to dry it with a fan as long as it hasn't swelled and the seams are still intact. If there is swelling or the drywall seams have separated, you will need to replace the damaged area. The chalky material and the paper facing of drywall often act like a sponge and moisture transfers quickly over a broad area. It is best to replace the damaged drywall to ensure that mold doesn’t grow behind the painted surface.

Continue to ventilate the area with ample air flow until everything is dried. Continue to use your dehumidifier during this process as well. You may be doing this for some time until the area is completely dried out. Clean all affected areas with appropriate cleaning agents to be sure that the conditions for mold and mildew are totally eradicated.

If the water damage was the result of a broken pipe or other mechanical failure, repair it quickly and correctly so that you don't aren't cleaning water damage again in a few months. Someone from SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe and a qualified plumber can help you navigate through this maze of water damage clean up.

Finally, call your insurance company and determine if the water damage is covered under your homeowner’s policy. The experienced pros at SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe can help you with this and all the other steps of water damage clean up when your next catastrophe happens.

Locally Owned Company with National Resources

As a locally owned and operated business, SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe is strategically located to respond quickly to your Fire Emergency. When an emergency occurs in Grosse Pointe, Grosse Pointe Farms, Grosse Pointe Park, Grosse Pointe Woods, Harper Woods, Warren, Madison Heights or Detroit, we have the resources and personnel to help. Call us today! (313) 882-5499

Don't Let Unwanted Water Close Your Business

1/16/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial Don't Let Unwanted Water Close Your Business Don't let unwanted water close your business.

SERVPRO Can Quickly Restore Your Water Damaged Business

There's nothing quite as difficult for a commercial establishment as dealing with water damage. However, knowing what to do when disaster strikes can prevent you from experiencing unnecessary emotional upsets for yourself, your employees, and your customers and mitigate the economic strain of lost business. There are many steps you'll need to take to get your commercial property back in order following a water damaging event. Contacting a team of skilled water damage restoration experts from SERVPRO is a good first step.

Quick Water Removal Mitigates Monetary Loss 

The longer excess water remains on your commercial property in Detroit, the more likely you are to suffer from costly water damage repairs to structural properties like ceiling tiles, insulation, drywall, and flooring. Then there is the concern of water damage to your capital investments: inventory, furniture, carpeting, electronic equipment and paper documents. Having a team of skilled water damage restoration experts like SERVPRO to begin immediately removing standing water can prevent you from spending unnecessary money on repairs.

Quick Remediation Prevents Secondary Water Damage.

Another benefit of a quick reaction to the pressing problem of water intrusion is that fast extraction helps prevent secondary water damage. Unfortunately, water damage creates a moist, wet environment within your business. Moisture and high humidity offer mold an opportunity to grow and spread throughout structural materials and wood furniture and fabrics. If your business deals with food distribution, high inventory loss may be a costly negative effect. For this reason, it's critically important to have standing water removed as quickly as possible. SERVPRO can arrive, usually in about one hour, with water removal equipment to meet any problem. 

Fast Restoration Helps You Get Back In Business

If the water intrusion, by way of a storm, flood, leak, or the aftermath of fire extinguishing causes severe water damage to your commercial business, you may have to relocate temporarily while water damage restoration work is being completed. Closed doors affect customer traffic, employee earnings, and your bottom line.  Insurance companies normally work hand-in-hand with SERVPRO to come to a working agreement allowing the water extraction process to commence immediately. 

Contact SERVPRO Today

If your commercial property has been subjected to water damage, getting fast, effective water damage restoration services is a must. Here at SERVPRO, we specialize in optimizing and expediting each component of the restoration process to ensure that you can get your business back in business. Moreover, each of our IICRC-Certified technicians will provide you with the personable care and excellent customer service that keeps you in the loop throughout the water damage restoration process. We can quickly reopen your doors like it never even happened.

Commercial Building Restoration Services

SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe responds quickly to a water or fire, or mold damage emergency, 24 hours a day. Whether the damage occurs in a small business building in Gross Pointe, or a big box store, we have the training, experience, and equipment to handle the situation. Our national network of 1,650 Franchises gives us access to personnel and resources. Call us for assistance, 313-882-5499

25 Most Commonly Used Restoration Terms Defined

1/4/2018 (Permalink)

General 25 Most Commonly Used Restoration Terms Defined SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe is a 24/7 Emergency Response Company. We are here to help, whenever you need us!

25 Restoration Terms Defined

Whenever dealing with an unfamiliar topic, you are sure to come across some terminology that is new as well. We’ve created this “restoration dictionary” to help guide you through articles on our website and educate yourself as much as possible.

Air Mover: Industrial strength fans that are used to dry properties in event of water damage

Agent: The person at an insurance company that interprets a policy and works with contractors involved in restoration is known as?

Adjuster: Insurance claims adjuster who advocates for the policyholder in appraising and negotiating a claimant’s insurance claim

Anti-Microbial Solutions: Cleaning products used to remove microorganisms from materials and prevent them from returning.

Bacteria: A very large group of microorganisms comprising one of the three domains of living organisms.

Blood borne Pathogens: Harmful microorganisms present in blood or other potentially infectious materials, that could cause disease or death in humans.

Claim: What you file when looking to collect money to make repairs from your insurance company.

Containment Area: Temporary plastic barriers that are used during mold removal projects to contain mold spores and work to a smaller area.

Dehumidifier: Used to pull water vapor out of the air and bring moisture levels back to normal/acceptable conditions.

Demolition: Point of work prior to drying where all saturated drywall, carpet, insulation are removed and discarded.

Dermal: Contact of the skin is a way that your body can absorb essential nutrients and harmful substances

Drying Time: Period of time where dehumidifiers and air movers are placed within the property, typically 48-72 hours to remove all remaining moisture from the air and structural materials.

Extraction: The initial step of a water damage restoration where excess water is removed from a property via pumping equipment.

Hepatotoxic: A poison that damages parenchymal cells of the liver.

Humidity: Measurement of the amount of water vapor in the air.

Ingestion: Consuming essential nutrients and harmful substances through eating is another form of absorption

Inhalation: Breathing is one way body absorbs essential nutrients and harmful substances

Inspector: Designated party to interpret the severity of situation and offer recommendations on what does and does not need to be done; preferably a separate entity from those fixing the issues.

Malaise: Malaise is a generalized feeling of discomfort, illness, or lack of well-being.

Moisture Meter: Tool used to detect amount of moisture within walls or materials and help locate sources of water intrusion.

Mold Testing: Air and surface samples taken to identify the species and quantity of mold present within a property.

Hygroscopic: Any material that absorbs and retains moisture retains moisture or water vapor from air is known to be.

Mycotoxin: Is a toxic secondary metabolite produced by organisms of the fungi kingdom, commonly known as molds.

Psychrometry: The measurement of the humidity content of the air by use of a psychrometric.

Thermal Imaging Camera: Tool used to detect temperature change and locate points of water intrusion.

Locally Owned Company with National Resources

As a locally owned and operated business, SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe is strategically located to respond quickly to your storm, flood, water, or fire emergency event. When an emergency occurs in Grosse Pointe, Grosse Pointe Park, Grosse Pointe Shores, Grosse Pointe Farms, Grosse Pointe Woods, Harper Woods or Detroit, we have the resources and personnel to help. Call us today! (313) 882-5499

Definitions provided by: SERVPRO net training videos, http://www.dictionary.com/ and http://www.IICRC.org/consumers/care/water-damage/

Helpful Tips Prior to the arrival of SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe

1/4/2018 (Permalink)

Here are some helpful tips prior to the arrival of SERVPRO®

Emergency Water Damage Tips

  • Shut off the water source if possible.
  •  Remove excess water by mopping and blotting.
  • Remove and prop up wet upholstery cushions for even drying.
  • Place aluminum foil or wood blocks under furniture legs.
  • Hang furs and leather goods separately at room temperature.
  • Remove Oriental or other colored rugs from wet carpeting.
  • Do not use a regular vacuum to remove water.
  • Do not turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet, and keep out of areas where ceilings are sagging from retained water.
  • Do not leave books, magazines or other colored items on wet carpeting.

 Water Damage Services

  • Emergency Response: Reduce Loss Severity/Pretesting for Restorability.
  • Contents Cleaning Specialists: On-Site or Move Out.
  • Structural Restoration Services.
  • Large Loss Completion with Trained Crew Leaders

Locally Owned Company with National Resources

As a locally owned and operated business, SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe is strategically located to respond quickly to your storm, flood, water, or fire emergency event. When an emergency occurs in Grosse Pointe, Grosse Pointe Park, Grosse Pointe Shores, Grosse Pointe Farms, Harper Woods or Detroit, we have the resources and personnel to help. Call us today! (313) 882-5499

Heating Safety in the Winter Season

1/4/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Heating Safety in the Winter Season It is important to understand how to safely and properly heat your homes during the winter. Be careful not to cause a fire or smoke damage.

HEATING SAFETY

The winter season is in full swing- the days are shorter and the temperature is lower. No matter where you live, winter brings a change in weather.  In an effort to keep our homes and workplaces cozy, many people use alternative heat sources like fireplaces, portable space heaters and wood burning stoves.  Heating is the second leading cause of home fire deaths, making it important to review ways to help reduce the risk of a heating related fire.

  • Maintain heating equipment and chimneys by having them cleaned and inspected annually by a qualified professional.
  • Use heating equipment that has the label of a recognized testing laboratory.
  • All heaters need space. Keep flammable objects at least three feet away from the heating equipment.
  • Plug space heaters directly into outlets, never into an extension cord or power strip.
  • When using fuel-burning heaters, use only the type of fuel specified by the manufacturer.
  • Install and maintain carbon monoxide and smoke alarms inside your home and business. Test alarms monthly.


Locally Owned Company with National Resources

As a locally owned and operated business, SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe is strategically located to respond quickly to your storm, flood, water, or fire emergency event. When an emergency occurs in Grosse Pointe, Grosse Pointe Park, Grosse Pointe Shores, Grosse Pointe Farms, Harper Woods or Detroit, we have the resources and personnel to help. Call us today! (313) 882-5499

Why You Should Call SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe for Sewage Cleanup

1/3/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Why You Should Call SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe for Sewage Cleanup Pictured here a sewage backup in a business. Make sure you call SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe for any residential or commercial sewage backup you may have.

The Dangers of DIY Sewage Cleanup

If you’re like most homeowners, when faced with a task or question you probably head to the internet for answers…that’s how you found this article! And if you’re dealing with backed-up sewage, it only takes a few seconds of searching to find hundreds of articles describing how to clean-up sewage.

It goes like this:

** Put on some rubber gloves

** Scoop out the waste

** Take some water and bleach solution and apply it to the affected areas

** Let it dry

Most articles will throw out a warning saying “if you’re not sure whether you can do it, or don’t have the proper equipment, it is best to call a professional”. That’s where you would call SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe.

We’d like to throw out another warning!

Cleaning up raw sewage on your own is something you should never do! 
Here’s why:

#1 – It can be hidden. – Any SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe crew member can tell you stories about customers that decided to clean-up their own feces only to call in weeks or months later complaining about smells and disfigured walls, cabinets, and floors. Sewage will find its way into any and all porous surfaces. Even things like drywall and cabinetry aren’t safe. And it’s not as simple as just spotting the sewage with your eyes. It requires state of the art equipment, which SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe has, to identify areas that have been damaged by sewage. So unless you have an infrared detection system handy and know how to use it, call SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe.

#2 – It can be costly. – Times are difficult for everyone and money is tight. It’s easy to justify doing it yourself instead of paying to have SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe clean and disinfect for you. But today’s shortcut is tomorrow’s nightmare! Again, you’re dealing with a toxic situation that if not handled properly can create very real health dangers for you and your family. Not only that, if not properly mitigated, you could be looking at a serious mold issue in the not so distant future on top of all of the other issues described above. And if you think sewage cleanup is costly, wait until you’re stuck with a bill for mold remediation services! At least your sewage clean-up is covered by insurance…that’s not typically the case if you’ve got mold and it’s the result of you not taking appropriate measures when dealing with the sewage issue that created the mold!


So, if you’ve stumbled upon this article due to a sewage back-up that’s spilled into your home or office, do yourself a favor and call us, SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe. Our technicians are certified to perform raw sewage cleanup and can provide you with peace of mind knowing the area affected is professionally cleaned.

Locally Owned Company with Valuable Resources

As a locally owned and operated business, SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe is strategically located to respond quickly to your water damage emergency and your mold cleanup. When there is mold in a home or business in Grosse Pointe, Grosse Pointe Shores, Grosse Pointe Park, Grosse Pointe Farms, Grosse Pointe Woods, Harper Woods, Hazel Park, Warren, or Madison Heights, we have the resources and personnel to help get your home or business back together. Call us today, (313) 882-5499!

Understanding the Process and Reducing Risk During Biohazard Cleanup

1/3/2018 (Permalink)

Biohazard Understanding the Process and Reducing Risk During Biohazard Cleanup SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe is certified to remove and cleanup any biohazard situation.

Dissecting Biohazard Cleanup: Understanding the Process and Reducing Risk

By Tim Reifsteck

When compared to a fire or water loss, property damage resulting from a suicide, murder or unattended death poses greater risk and complexity for the adjuster, the biohazard cleanup company, and of course, the policyholder. Many cleaning and restoration companies will offer bioremediation services, but only those that specialize in this area, like SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe, truly understand the science and intricacies of the bioremediation and decontamination process. In order to minimize risk for the insurance carrier and ensure the safety of the policy holder, it’s important to realize the inherent challenges of bioremediation and the processes and standards that every biohazard cleanup professional must adhere to.

Am I liable for an improper biohazard cleanup?

At some point in their careers, insurance professionals may have experienced sticker shock from a bioremediation claim. How could the biohazard cleanup of a single room cost more than recovering an entirely flooded home? It might be tempting to retain a trusted property damage restoration company at a lower cost, but doing so may put the insurer at risk for a lawsuit.

Consider a recent case where a general cleaning company was hired to sanitize a home after 600 pounds of deer meat rotted in a family’s garage due to a power outage. Following the cleaning, the homeowners reported that the rotting stench still remained throughout the house and that some family members became ill. Experts who were brought in to investigate the situation determined that the enduring smell and sickness resulted from inefficiencies in the cleaning process, such as the failure to seal concrete surfaces.

Why is bioremediation so complex?

Many biohazard situations pose grave health risks to policy holders and cleanup companies because of the potential exposure to bloodborne pathogens. One out of every 24 people has Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C or HIV and these pathogens can survive in a deceased person for a considerable amount of time – up to 16 days after death, depending on the temperature and surrounding environment. Exposure to bloodborne viruses can occur due to direct contact with non-intact skin, accidental injury from biological fragments, inhalation and exposure from splashes of blood or bio fluid to the eyes, nose, or mouth. Considering the health risks, bioremediation specialists must follow stringent employee safety regulations and meticulous decontamination procedures that most cleanup crews are not accustomed to.

Separately, biohazard situations can lead to hidden dangers that an average property restoration technician might not even consider. For example, in a water damage emergency, floor boards and drywall might be removed because they are visibly warped and unsalvageable. Then the rest of the structure can be dried out. In contrast, blood can seep through grout and in-between floorboards, even through subflooring. There is no other way to clean the damage but to remove all affected materials – if new wood floors are installed over the blood spill or if tiles are simply wiped down, the remaining bio matter can spread disease, release odors and further damage the property.

How do I evaluate a bioremediation provider?

To determine whether or not a company is qualified to handle a biohazard situation, insurance professionals need a deeper understanding of proper bioremediation standards and what it takes to fully decontaminate a property. These are the key things to inquire about when choosing a vendor for a biohazard cleanup:

OSHA Compliance – These regulations are in place to protect the biohazard company employees and to prevent injury and potential liability for all involved. All supervisors and field technicians should be trained in the following OSHA programs: Bloodborne Pathogens, Personal Protective Equipment, Hazard Communication, Asbestos Awareness, Heat Illness, Fall Protection, Lift Safety, Lock Out – Tag Out, and Power Tool Safety. A common misstep among restoration companies is that they only comply with the OSHA Bloodborne Pathogens Standards, instead of all the aforementioned areas.

EPA and State Environmental Agency Compliance – The disposal of medical waste must be in accordance with federal, state and/or local regulations. Not all biohazard remediation companies are licensed to transport or store medical waste so it’s essential to understand if/how they comply with the local and national standards. The cleaning company can incur hefty fines if medical waste is not disposed of properly. Also, employees need to be trained in the proper use of cleaning agents – this can be more complicated than it seems, as many agents will become inactive if not measured and diluted properly.

Reporting/Testing – A reputable company should be able to deliver a detailed report which catalogs every step of the cleanup process. This should include photos of the entire process as well, so the policy holder and adjuster understand why some structural materials needed to be removed, what was disposed, why the employees went through a certain amount of protective equipment, etc. They should also have equipment available to check for non-visible but active biological fluids and other contaminants so that it is certain when an area is considered disinfected.

Sensitivity Training – Dealing with a flood or fire can be extremely traumatic, but it does not compare to the loss of loved one. During these traumatic situations, the family members often stay at home so it is imperative that the workers in their home are compassionate and considerate. The biohazard cleanup specialists at SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe understand the need for the family to deal with only one point person in order to avoid confusion or conflicting updates. They have been trained to eliminate alarming language from their vocabulary and speak empathetically with the policyholder.

When it comes to biohazard remediation, there is no quick solution. The fact that there are no laws protecting policy holders through a biohazard cleaning process puts the responsibility on the insurance carrier to work with bioremediation specialists who follow strict safety standards and cleanup procedures. If the insurance carrier directs the cleanup process and even one of the above points is neglected, they might be held liable for any further health and property damages resulting from the improper cleanup. It is important to remember that you can’t put a price tag on the peace of mind that a policy holder needs after a traumatic crime or death occurred in their home or place of business.

Locally Owned Company with Valuable Resources

As a locally owned and operated business, SERVPRO of Grosse Pointe is strategically located to respond quickly to your water damage emergency and your mold cleanup. When there is mold in a home or business in Grosse Pointe, Grosse Pointe Shores, Grosse Pointe Park, Grosse Pointe Farms, Grosse Pointe Woods, Harper Woods, Hazel Park, Warren, or Madison Heights, we have the resources and personnel to help get your home or business back together. Call us today! (313) 882-5499

Information provided by: http://www.claimsjournal.com/news/national/2013/10/22/238753.htm