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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Archived Blog Posts

Be Prepared for Hurricanes

3/29/2022 (Permalink)

Flooded Streets in New Bern Flooded streets in New Bern from Hurricanes

SERVPRO 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.

We also have equipment and teams ready to go at SERVPRO of New Bern in case you have an emergency.

Resources to Handle Floods and Storms

When storms hit the city of New Bern, 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.

Be Prepared

Before the storm hits make sure you have a basic disaster kit ready. Having these supplies ahead of time will save you the frustration of going to the store right before the storm hits. Below are some recommended supplies for your kit:

  • Water
  • Battery-operated lanterns
  • Flashlight
  • Matches
  • Can Opener
  • Duct Tape
  • Extra blankets
  • Clean Clothes
  • First Aid Kit
  • Food (3 days worth)
  • Garbage bags
  • Dust Mask

Every homeowner can do things around your home now to save you time when you need it.

  • Move furniture away from windows
  • Remove outdoor items
  • Fill gas tanks
  • Board up windows
  • Get extra cash
  • Trim dead branches from trees
  • Store important documents in waterproof containers

Space Heater Safety

3/29/2022 (Permalink)

Fire Place A fire place in a New Bern Home

As the temperature outside continues to drop, we respond by heating our homes more frequently, or even by introducing new heat sources such as a space heater. As warm and cozy as this might make you feel, there are some important considerations you may want to review.

Heating equipment fires accounted for 15% of all reported home fires according to the NFPA. The following guidelines can help you choose the right heater to keep you and your family safe.

  1. Second-hand goods are a great way to be frugal, but purchasing a newer model heater branded with the Underwriter's Laboratory (UL) label should ensure that all of the current safety features are present.
  2. Heater size can make a big impact on your energy bill. Typically, manufacturers will have a guide on the box to help you choose the optimally sized heater for your needs, so be sure to pick the right size.
  3. If available, choose a thermostatically controlled heater to further reduce energy costs.
  4. Place the heater you choose on a stable, level surface where pets and children cannot accidentally harm themselves. Also, be sure not to place your heater anywhere near materials that can combust.        

Of course, there is always a chance that even with the best preparation, unforeseen circumstances can happen. Just remember, if you or someone you know is in need of professional cleanup or restoration services, our 24/7 emergency crews here at SERVPRO® HereToHelp.

4 Questions About Mold and Mildew

3/24/2022 (Permalink)

Wall and Window with Mold. Know more About Mold and Mildew and if you have more questions, just Contact us.

It's a lot of fun to shop for a new home in New Bern, NC. Your "must have" list is long, and you know that you need to pay attention to the neighborhood, check the pipes under the sink, and actually read the home disclosures. Did you remember to look for mold and mildew? These words strike fear into the hearts of home buyers and sellers alike.

In order to look for signs of mold damage, it's important to know what these terms mean. Here are four questions you might have about mold and mildew.

1. What's the Difference Between Mold and Mildew?

Many people talk about mold and mildew in the same breath. While they are related, there are some key differences. Both are a type of fungus. Mold can grow up and is responsible for the fuzzy green spots on the loaf of bread that was left uneaten for too long. Mildew tends to stay flat. It's usually white and powdery and might be mistaken for dirt or dust. Mold can eat through materials such as drywall or ceiling tiles, causing structural problems. Mildew tends to spread outward and cover large areas but it doesn't have an impact on the structure of a home.

2. Why Do Mold and Mildew Happen?

Both mold and mildew grow in damp or wet environments. Think about areas of your home in which there's regularly a lot of moisture: the kitchen, the bathrooms, the basement. Mold and mildew form because the environment supports their growth. In a bathroom, for example, you might see mildew growth around the window frame. The dust on the window frame acts as food for the mildew spores and the water droplets from the shower and oxygen in the room support its growth.

Some molds and mildew thrive in a warm environment, like a bathroom or kitchen, and some prefer colder places like basements or outdoor crawl spaces. Excess moisture happens in bathrooms and kitchens due to steam. A leaking pipe or condensation building up on appliances can also trigger a fungus-friendly environment.

3. How Can Mold and Mildew Be Prevented?

In order to prevent mold growth, you have to remove or minimize the conditions that support their growth. For example, when you're cooking on the stove or running the shower, keep an exhaust fan going to prevent the buildup of moisture. In very damp areas, such as in the basement, run a dehumidifier. Position furniture appropriately to keep vents open so that air circulates.

4. What Are the Signs of Mold Damage?

Now that you know about mold and mildew, what do you need to keep an eye out for? First, a rotten or musty odor is a sure sign that there is an ongoing problem with mold growth. Walls or floors that look warped can be indicators that significant water damage occurred, giving mold the opportunity to form.

Consult with a mold remediation specialist to determine the extent of the problem before you make an offer on a home. When you know what mold and mildew are and what mold damage looks like, you can better assess the risks when visiting a home you hope to buy.

5 Things To Always Toss After a Fire

3/16/2022 (Permalink)

Full Garbage Can There are some Elements that you Should Always Toss After a Fire. Know more about it by Following Our Tips.

If a fire happens in your New Bern, NC home, it is an overwhelming situation. While a professional fire damage restoration company will help restore your home and salvage many items, there are some things that you need to throw away. Below are five categories of items that should also be tossed for safety reasons.

1. Perishable Food

While the food in your freezer or refrigerator may be salvageable, any food left out on the counter or table should never be kept. If you are unsure whether the appliances properly sealed out the fire damage, signs that there is damage include a smoky smell, visible soot, power was lost for more than two hours or food has an odd odor. Any of these indicate that it's time to restock the kitchen.

2. Exposed Non-perishable Food

While it may be a given to throw away any opened containers or packaged items that are permeable, such as cardboard or plastic bags, you may not think about the jarred or canned foods. Unfortunately, high heat has a way of activating bacteria that may ruin food. Even if it a jar is sealed, fumes may have made their way into the container. Any sealed foods that have visible damage, such as charring or bulging, should never be saved.

Whether sealed or not, toss anything that was near the flames and heat. It’s always best to err on the side of caution.

3. Burned Clothing, Bedding and Towels

Any clothing, curtains, blankets, sheets, towels and other textiles that are visibly burned are not salvageable. While it may be tempting to keep items that have smoke or soot damage, it is worth talking to a professional first. Even after multiple washings, some items may still retain a strange odor from the chemicals in the fire extinguishing agent. Additionally, soot and smoke may have hidden irritants that are best to avoid.

4. Cosmetics, Hygiene Products and Medicines

Depending on the extent of the fire and its location, cosmetics, hygiene products and medicines may be affected. Any visible signs of warping or singe marks are clear indicators that the time should be tossed. If the fire was near these items, even if they don’t look damaged, they may be compromised. If exposed to extreme heat, the composition of the medicines and cosmetics may have been altered. While these are often expensive, tossing them will help you avoid other issues from happening down the road.

5. Fabric Furniture and Mattresses

Smoke damage is a tricky thing. Even if your fabric furniture and mattresses don’t appear to have any damage, the odors and chemicals in smoke may linger forever. Since a mattress is a soft surface, it is more prone to absorbing moisture, bacteria and odors. Unless you are certain that these items were unaffected, its’ best to replace them.

When a fire happens, it comes with much more than sifting through the visible damage. While you may not want to throw away some of your favorite or expensive items, it's best to take the safe route and replace the above five things that may have sustained smoke damage.

Flood Damage Means Dealing With Black Water

3/10/2022 (Permalink)

Flooded Street. Protect your Property from Flood Damage, and Avoid Black Water by Following These Tips.

Operating a successful business in New Bern, NC requires considering all the what-ifs. When that what-if is flood water, the solution isn't as straightforward as it may seem. If your property is flooded, along with the potential damage it may cause during and after the event, the water itself needs to be considered.

Categories of Water

Not all flood water is the same. The Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification, a nonprofit organization, has determined that there are three water categories.

Clear Water:

This is the least severe of the three. It is considered clear because it comes from a source that is free of sewage and non-toxic to humans. Instances of a flood with this type of water include a broken supply line, sink overflow or malfunctioning appliance. While it may be the safest of the three, it still may cause significant damage if not immediately taken care of. If it sits too long, it may evolve into the other types.

Grey Water:

This category means that the water may have some minor chemicals or contaminants that may cause discomfort but may not be too harmful to humans. Water discharging from a dishwasher or washing machine is a common culprit, as well as an overflowing toilet with urine only. While it may not pose a significant danger, it should be treated differently than the first type. Similarly, it can change categories if left unattended.

Black Water:

Highly unsanitary, it contains bacteria, fungi and contaminants that are harmful if ingested. Water from a natural flood falls into this category since the water is often coming from underground sources, thus making it potentially have sewage and chemicals. It also is known to cause black mold. Dealing with damage from this type of water requires extra safety precautions.

Storm Damage Remediation

While you may want to jump right in and start picking up the pieces after the storm, water damage is more serious than it appears. If the source makes it fall into Category 3, it will require extra planning and specialized equipment to properly clean, sanitize and restore the property. Even after the water is gone, it may leave behind lingering effects. Thus, it is recommended to hire a professional to tackle the job.

The first step is getting an assessment and beginning the drying out process. For safety purposes, it is best to avoid affected areas. In many cases, items will be removed to help minimize the spread of damage. Along with industrial sanitizing of the affected items, air scrubbers are used to ensure that unaffected areas remain that way. Dehumidifiers and air mover are also brought in to ensure the property is returned to its original condition.

Throughout the process, it is necessary to wear protective gear, including eye protection, respirations, boots, gloves and waterproof clothing.

While it may seem that any flood water is simply just that, there are different types. Knowing the water source is essential before cleanup can begin. Instead of wondering if it is safe to proceed, it is worth getting the assistance of a professional.

Create a Fire Escape Plan for Your Family's Safety

2/24/2022 (Permalink)

A Family Escape Plan. Create a Good Fire Escape Plan for Your Family and avoid Fire Damage by following These Tips.

Every second counts when it comes to getting your family safely out of a home fire. This means creating a fire escape plan that covers all the bases. Use the following tips for creating your own emergency escape plan and regularly practice evacuation with your children.

Five Tips for Effectively Using a Fire Escape Plan

Gather your family together while making the plan. Create a visual map of the home and then walk through your home, noting all the potential exits, including the windows. Make sure you mark two routes of escape from each room.

Don't forget to indicate the locations of fire alarms and extinguishers and then provide each family member with a copy of the map. Include tasks for family members, such as assisting younger siblings or older adults out of the home.

1. Keep Escape Points Accessible

Make sure that all exit points are free from obstruction. This may include providing access to exit points, such as windows. Remember that seconds count, so make it as easy as possible for children to reach and open windows during a fire. An emergency release device on the windows can ensure that no one outside can enter, but family members can still trigger the release when necessary.

2. Choose a Safe Meeting Place

Assign a meeting place outside of your home where family members will gather. Choose a location that is far enough away to be safe from the fire and close enough that each family member can get there quickly. If this is location is at a neighbor's home, be sure to reach out to that neighbor before practicing your escape plan. Teach your children to stay out of the home once they've evacuated; they should not return to for any reason. If a family member or pet is missing, alert the fire department.

3. Increase the Number of Fire and Smoke Detectors

Install plenty of smoke detectors in your home. There should be a detector/alarm in every bedroom, hallways outside of bedrooms, and on every level of the home. You should also install detectors in the kitchen and other rooms with potential fire hazards. Make sure you have a schedule for replacing batteries and detectors.

Talk with a professional about installing a connected fire detection system, so that all of the alarms respond as soon as one of them picks up signs of trouble

4. Close Bedroom Doors at Night

Teach children to sleep with their bedroom doors closed. This simple barrier slows the spread of heat, smoke, and flames into the bedroom. It also gives your children a little more time to safely evacuate.

Part of your fire escape plan should include details such as feeling the doorknob for heat and checking for smoke coming through the gaps around the door.

5. Schedule Fire Drills Often

Running through the fire escape plan regularly is a crucial part of surviving a house fire. After working through the plan several times during the day, run through it a few times at night. You may want to run through some drills when family members aren't expecting them. It is also worth noting that children may not wake during a fire alarm without some practice.

You can get more information about fire prevention and escape plans from your local fire department, a fire mitigation and remediation company in New Bern, NC, and your home insurance provider.

Content Cleaning After a Flood

2/23/2022 (Permalink)

 House in Process of Restoration Know more about Content Cleaning After a Flood by following These Tips.

What do you think of when you think about the phrase content cleaning? If you are like many homeowners, you likely imagine a house cleaner or housekeeper running a vacuum and swashing a mob across your floors. However, if you are a restoration service in New Bern, NC, your idea is likely to be much different.

For restoration services, this type of cleaning refers to the restorative cleaning of damaged contents. Unfortunately, different disasters can make restoration impossible for specific items. For instance, a fire can leave little remnants of photographs, and its smoke can make appliance repairs risky. A flood can ruin floors, but some fabrics might be salvageable, depending on the water category.

When it comes to contents, you need to consider the item and its material. Commonly damaged items include:

  • Electronics
  • Fabrics
  • Papers
  • Photos

For some items, you can find specialized cleaners who can work miracles. Still, it would be best if you were prepared to let go. In many cases, the ability to save content depends on how quickly you respond to the disaster.

How To Organize Content Cleaning Efforts

When speaking of storm damage, a flood is a common disaster. The flood does not have to stem from the exterior of the home either. Weather can weaken the roof or cause sewage backups.

Before delving into the cleanup process, it is crucial to organize the effort. Restoration services can help by separating potentially salvageable materials from clear trash.

While restoration companies understand that some contents hold sentimental value, it is vital that clients trust the experts' opinions. Sometimes, sentimentality is not enough to salvage a piece.

What Is Salvageable?

In general, nonporous items can be saved, and porous items need further assessment. If porous items were submerged in clean water, they could often be cleaned. However, when dealing with gray or black water, it is typically best to throw away anything porous.

Restoration experts often suggest being vigilant when sorting through your contents. Many experts urge clients to be grateful for their safety and the possibility of recovery. While they understand the loss of sentimental items is difficult, sometimes the best thing you can do for your health is throw away contaminated items.

Trust the opinions of the remediation service you hire. The technicians working on your property are licensed and trained in disaster response cleaning. They will understand what items can be saved and which should be discarded.

Who Can Help With the Recovery?

While many homeowners want to cut recovery costs, they need to consider the extent of the damage and the category of the water. Not all water disasters are suitable for DIY responses. In fact, clean water disasters are likely the only type of water issue homeowners can help with. There are certain health risks to consider when it comes to gray or black water.

Content cleaning after a flood from a storm is often best left to professional remediation experts. While homeowners might want to save money, it is essential to put health and safety first. It is also necessary to accept that not every item can be salvaged.

How Soon Should I Clean a Wood Floor?

2/22/2022 (Permalink)

Flooded Wood Floor These Tips will help you to better Clean your Wood Floor in your Vanceboro, NC property.

A water pipe burst at your Vanceboro, NC, commercial building can quickly turn into a major disaster. The influx of water can inflict significant damage on practically everything in the area of the faulty pipe. When it comes to water damage, time is of the essence. This is especially true when trying to take care of a wet floor, especially a laminate or natural wood floor.

There probably won't be a way to avoid damage if the water has already come into contact with the wood floor. However, you must take several critical steps as soon as possible to begin mitigating the damage.

Water Exposure: Every Second Counts

It's essential to start the flood cleanup process as soon as possible to slow the loss. It can be helpful to know the procedure before experiencing this type of disaster so you can get to work immediately.

  1. Prioritize Your Safety

When water leaks into your building, water could flow into areas where electronics are plugged in. In this case, electric currents could be running through even the tiniest amount of standing water. It's vital to shut off the power to the affected area or the entire building before stepping foot into the flooded area.

Call a professional electrician or your power provider if you cannot safely get to the breaker box.

  1. Remove the Standing Water

A wet/dry vacuum is certainly not necessary for removing standing water from your floor. However, it will make the job much faster and easier. Depending on how much water you have pooled in the area and the size of your wet/dry vacuum, you might have to empty the vacuum's water receptacle once or more during the wet floor cleanup process.

  1. Clear the Flooded Area

It will probably be necessary to clear as many contents as possible out of the area to make room to work. After all, you will need to remove all the water and properly dry everything after a pipe burst. Some of these materials will probably be unsalvageable if they have water damage.

  1. Clean and Sanitize Everything

Once all contents are removed from the flood-affected area, everything must be thoroughly cleaned to prevent mold from growing and bacteria from spreading. This is the case even if it involves a clean water pipe bursting.

  1. Dry the Area and Contents Thoroughly

Next, it's critical to dry everything thoroughly as quickly as possible. Ensure that even small crevices are dry, as water can seep into the tiniest spaces. In addition to the damage the water itself does, mold can begin growing in as little as 24 hours. The best option is to contact water damage remediation professionals due to their knowledge, experience and industrial-grade equipment. Following a pipe burst in your structure, it's essential to begin the water cleanup process as quickly as possible to salvage your wood floor. A wet floor can lead to damage from the water itself as well as lead to secondary damage like mold growth. Immediately doing a thorough job will prevent further damage.

Follow these recommendations to ensure you perform the cleaning and drying process sufficiently.

Steps You Should Take Before Flooding Occurs

1/24/2022 (Permalink)

Flooded Street. Follow these tips before Flooding occurs in your New Bern, NC home. If any doubt arises, please contact us.

Having a plan for what to do before, during and after flooding is critical for protecting your family and reducing the amount of damage that may occur to your property. These are some of the steps you should take before a flood happens.

Flood Damage Preparation Steps

Waiting for a flood to occur to take action can jeopardize your safety and lead to greater property damage and financial loss. Consider adding these steps to your flood plan.

1. Know the Difference Between Flood Warnings, Watches and Advisories

Knowing what to expect will help you make plans for the immediate future. A flash flood warning means that a flash flood is either about to happen or is already happening. If you are in an area that may flood, move to higher ground immediately.

A flood warning is similar to a flash flood warning, except that it usually involves flooding from overflowing water sources and is slower to develop than flash floods.

A flood watch means that weather conditions are favorable for a flood to occur. It doesn't mean that a flood will definitely happen, but you should monitor the weather closely.

A flood advisory is similar to a watch, except that it means that conditions are favorable for a less severe flood to happen.

2. Create a Communications

Plan Storm damage may knock out electricity and phone service. It can sometimes even disrupt cellular phones. It is important to plan how you will communicate with friends and family if a flood occurs. Arrange a safe location to meet in case you do not have access to phone or internet service. Designate a person to be the contact for status updates.

3. Stock an Emergency Kit

Some flood situations may take days to develop, but others can happen in minutes. Have an emergency kit on hand at all times in case you need to quickly evacuate. Stock your kit with enough water, food and medicine for three days or more. Pack batteries, flashlights, blankets, rubber boots and gloves, a first aid kit and an NOAA Weather radio.

4. Sign Up for Weather Alerts

The Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service makes RSS feeds with weather, river and other water alerts available to the public. You may also be able to sign up for alerts from your local television or radio station and your cell phone company.

5. Prepare Your Home

If you have time, place sandbags or other flood barriers around your home. Have check-valves installed in your plumbing to prevent floodwater backups and install a sump pump with a battery-powered backup pump in your basement. Ensure your circuit breaker panels or fuse box is clearly marked. Consider purchasing flood insurance. Most homeowners policies do not cover flood damage. Keep contact numbers for services you may need, such as a plumber, tree removal company or flood remediation company in New Bern, NC, in a safe place.

Flooding can be a danger to both your family and your home. However, having a plan in place can help keep you and your property safe during severe weather events.

A Proactive Approach to Plumbing Problems

1/13/2022 (Permalink)

Professional performing a repair You can avoid Plumbing Problems in your New Bern, NC commercial building by following these important tips.

Plumbing problems cause a lot of expense for property owners throughout New Bern, NC. In addition to resulting water damage, those problems often shut down businesses for professional cleanup and restoration. Some of the most common issues faced by businesses include:

  • Leaks and clogs along the pipe system
  • Worn toilet and water heater components
  • Sewer blockages
  • Burst pipes

The good news is that a proactive approach can prevent situations such as a broken pipe or a clogged water main.

Avoid Plumbing Problems With Proactive Maintenance

Routine maintenance and inspections are some of the best steps in preventing plumbing problems. This begins with finding a reliable, qualified plumber. Check out online reviews and get recommendations from peers in your community. Schedule regular appointments with the plumber, so this professional is familiar with your system before a major broken pipe or other emergencies.

Automate Your Bathrooms

Inappropriate items flushed down the toilet are huge problem-causers in plumbing systems. It can be difficult to monitor what the public carries into the bathroom, but you can cut down on waste and clogged toilets by replacing paper towels with automatic hand dryers. Automated toilets and toilet paper dispensers can also reduce the risk of clogs. You might even consider installing bidet attachments.

Exercise Water Valves

Many property owners don't know where their main water valves are located, let alone how to find and exercise all the valves throughout the property.

However, simply closing and opening the valves once a year is a great way to increase the life expectancy of the valves. If you increase this exercise rate to two, three, or four times a year, you can be sure they will be operational during an emergency. Ask your plumber how to locate all the valves and complete the exercises. Also ask for recommendations about how often is appropriate for your business.

Flush the Water Heater

This is a vital part of yearly maintenance. You may have some experience with this task for your personal appliance, but commercial water heaters should be handled by professionals. The amount of sediment, specifically lime and calcium, that accumulates in the tank can cause a lot of trouble. As professionals handle this task, they often recognize warning signs of further trouble, such as cloudy water, rusted components, and worn anode rods. Additionally, it takes time to flush the sediment out of the take and many businesses just can't devote that much time away from their other responsibilities.

Complete Maintenance for Each Season

Seasonal maintenance is another huge aspect of preventative maintenance. Before the temperature drops, detach hoses from the building and all exterior water pipes are drained. Add insulation to exterior faucets and pipes that are next to the walls of the building. Frozen pipes are a big cause of pipe leaks during the winter and spring months. Reach out to local professionals to learn more about the tasks you can do during each season to keep your plumbing system in good repair.

Most plumbing problems can be avoided with regular maintenance and professional inspections. This proactive approach tends to be much less expensive than major repairs and reconstruction that follow water damage.

Things To Throw Away After a Fire

1/6/2022 (Permalink)

Medicine Cabinet If you experience Fire in your New Bern, NC house, follow these tips to find out what items to keep.

After a home fire, many things may be able to be salvaged. Some furniture can be cleaned and restored, and as long as your clothing didn't actually get charred by the flames, the smoke and soot can likely be washed out. However, there are a few things that you should always throw away after a fire in your home.

Follow these tips to find out what items to keep after a fire.

Food

It's hard to salvage food items if the fire in your home in New Bern, NC, breaks out anywhere near the kitchen. Even if the flames don't come into direct contact with your pantry and fridge, high heat is likely to alter the chemical content of the food there, making it unsafe to eat. Go through your food storage and toss any items that may have been spoiled by the presence of the fire:

  • Canned goods
  • Boxed items
  • Opened packages
  • Anything on the counter

In addition to clearing out shelf-stable items, check your fridge and freezer for spoiled foods. If your home was without electricity for more than a couple of hours you probably need to throw away everything inside, even if the doors are well-sealed. The lack of refrigeration combined with the intense heat from being close to the fire is enough to ruin the items stored within.

Medicine

It's important to take stock of your medicine cabinet often so that you can throw away any medications that may be out of date. After a fire, however, all medicine, including prescription and over-the-counter items, should be discarded. Even if the pills or ointments are hidden behind the door of the cabinet or under the sink, the intense heat from the fire can alter their chemical composition, rendering them unsafe or ineffective. Create an itemized list of all the items you have to replace. You may be able to include them on your insurance claim and recoup some of the costs needed to restock your medicine cabinet.

Cosmetics

The fire damage restoration experts who mitigate the structural problems may be able to salvage certain personal items, too, but anything that is easily altered by heat must be thrown away. This includes all cosmetics. Toss all makeup, face wash, toner, moisturizers and other related items in the trash. The ingredients that make the original products go on smoothly and deliver amazing benefits to your skin are the same ones that don't stand up very well to high heat. Since you can't know for sure that they are still safe to use, it's better to replace them completely than take a chance that they will not live up to the promises on the packaging or cause issues with your skin.

There are many things that can be salvaged after a fire. The mitigation team can assess damages to personal items that are affected by smoke or soot, and a lot of your furniture may be able to be cleaned as well. However, you must throw away any food, medication or cosmetics that are subjected to the intense heat of a house fire. Knowing what to keep and what to discard is a vital part of the recovery process.

What Is Mold, Anyway?

11/22/2021 (Permalink)

Black mold Prevent mold in your New Bern, NC rental property to reduce risks.

Owning rental property is a potentially lucrative but stressful venture. One of the main problems is limiting vacancies and protecting your properties from damage during such inevitable circumstances.

Why Prevent Mold

Mold prevention should be among your primary concerns as it is an often costly and timely issue. There are several things a property owner can do to limit the risks of mold growth during vacancies, including:

  • Turn off the main water supply
  • Turn down the thermostat
  • Keep heat on

While these items will help reduce the risks of mold development, they do not represent everything a property owner can do. You might want to contact a mold remediation professional in New Bern, NC for more information and insight.

Mold Prevention for Rental Property Owners and Managers

Mold is a problem for any rental property, and it is a concern for most property owners. With the constant tenant turnover expected with such investments, buildings can be subject to varying temperature and water usage issues. Therefore, a property owner needs to recognize the risks and adjust to protect the structure and its integral components.

Plumbing Issues Result in Most Mold Concerns

Water damage is among the most common reasons for mold development. However, while the perception might be that a significant leak or break is required for mold to develop, that is not the case. A slow and steady drip can provide enough moisture for mold to thrive.

Therefore, if you want to avoid issues between tenants, it is best to shut off the water supply and drain the system. If there is no water in the pipes, then the risk of breaks or leaks is minimized.

Do not just assume the plumbing is Ok for the next tenant. It is often best to hire a plumber to inspect the system before turning the water back on to ensure everything is in working order.

Heat Can Become a Problem

When there is no one on your property, it is best to keep the thermostat turned down. Mold loves humidity, and if the temp is high enough in the property, it can lead to increased humidity in the building.

However, you do not want to bottom out your thermostat either because that can result in frozen pipes and breaks, leading to mold. It is better to leave your empty building at a consistent temperature, not too hot or cold.

You can install a dehumidifier in the property to help stabilize the indoor environment. If using a dehumidifier, you want to ensure that the humidity level never gets above 50%, which is the maximum level for indoor spaces.

It is also beneficial to inspect the property between tenants to ensure exhaust and ceiling fans are working correctly. Take the time in between tenants to make any necessary repairs and inspections.

Mold prevention is crucial in rental properties, especially during vacancies or tenant transitions. The process does not have to be complicated. You mainly want to maintain a steady temperature, lower humidity levels, and control water supplies. A remediation specialist can help you determine the best preventative steps for your property.

Answers to Your Questions About Flooding in the Basement

11/22/2021 (Permalink)

Wet wall. Flooding can lead to mold growth in your New Bern, NC basement.

When water gets into the basement of your home in New Bern, NC, it can cause a lot of trouble for you as a homeowner. In addition to leaving the walls and carpeting stained, even a little bit of flooding creates a place for mold to flourish. The resulting environment is an invitation to insects and rodents. Sitting water can carry bacteria and may absorb chemicals from drywall and carpeting. If water comes into contact with your home's wiring or any electronics, there is a potential for electrocution.

FAQs About Basement Flooding

Water damage in the basement is a big problem and requires a quick response. However, there are several things you can do to prevent a basement flood:

  • Keep your rain gutters clean.
  • Direct water away from the foundation.
  • Install and maintain a sump pump.
  • Maintain your plumbing system.
  • Repair damage to the foundation.
  • Inspect the foundation and basement windows and doors regularly.

Home maintenance can be less expensive and more convenient than hiring water damage cleanup and repair professionals.

How Does Water Get in the Basement?

There are many ways for water to get into the basement, and you can't prevent all of them. However, it can be helpful to understand some of the main causes of flooding:

  • Leaks at the joints of the foundation and walls, windows, and doors
  • Cracks in the foundation
  • Malfunctioning sump pump
  • Appliance failure
  • Sewer backup
  • Improperly sloped landscape
  • Pressure from rising groundwater

If it's possible to identify any of these situations before they cause trouble, it may be possible to avoid water damage from a basement flood.

What Do I Do If There's Water in the Basement?

You don't need to panic when you see water. However, you do need to take immediate action:

  • Shut off the power, both electricity, and gas.
  • Shut off the water.
  • Contact your home insurance provider.
  • Use gloves and boots before entering the flooded area.
  • Call professionals with experience in cleaning up basement flooding.

There's a high risk of causing further damage if you wade into the water. Some of these risks include missing spots of moisture and allowing mold growth, making holes in weakened wood or drywall, and causing damage to water-logged electronics. In most cases, it is better to leave the cleaning up and any repairs to professionals.

Why Get Specialists Involved?

In addition to avoiding more damage, there are several reasons for hiring experienced professionals. Technicians can often quickly determine the cause of the water in the basement. When the cause isn't obvious, professionals can check for cracks and provide pipe repair, find the cause of a faulty water heater, or recognize weaknesses in the foundation.

Almost immediately, technicians will use professional-grade equipment to pump out water. These pros also have heavy-duty fans and other gear that ensure the rapid removal of water and moisture. Once all of the water is gone, technicians clean and sanitize surfaces to prevent mold growth.

If there are furnishings, appliances, and other materials in the basement, professionals may remove some of the heavier or more fragile items. Technicians will also help you determine what can be saved and what must be thrown out.

Flooding in the basement can cause a lot of trouble, but with a quick response and professional help, you can save your New Bern, NC, home.

What Is IICRC Certification?

11/22/2021 (Permalink)

Certification SERVPRO has IICRC certification, ensuring professionalism in restoration and cleanup.

One of the benefits of using SERVPRO for your restoration needs is that all of our professionals are IICRC certified. What does this mean?

IICRC Certification

The Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration provides certification programs for restoration professionals. Because the restoration industry is not regulated by the federal government, these certification programs are important for ensuring that restoration companies in New Bern, NC, provide quality work.

What Type of Training Does the Institute Provide?

The Institute was originally established to regulate work done by carpet and upholstery cleaners. Today, it covers all types of cleaning and restoration. It offers certifications in a wide variety of specializations:

  • Building moisture inspection
  • Commercial drying
  • Contents processing
  • Fire and smoke damage restoration
  • Odor control technician
  • Water damage restoration
  • Others

Why Choose a Certified Company?

A mitigation certificate doesn't guarantee that a company will provide good service. However, certification requires a substantial investment of time and money that most low-quality restoration companies are not going to make. This doesn't mean that every company that lacks certification is of poor quality, but it does mean that a company that has taken the time to get certified is unlikely to be a fly-by-night scammer or do shoddy work.

Certified professionals have demonstrated a high level of understanding and expertise in the restoration and cleaning industry. Certification gives them the tools they need to provide customers with industry-leading service.

Does the Institute Run Certification Schools?

The Institute does not operate certification schools. It approves schools, such as the one at SERVPRO, to teach and administer certification programs.

Do Certified Professionals Need Continuing Education?

Certificate holders must earn continuing education credits to maintain certification. This helps ensure that their skills stay fresh and are updated to reflect the latest technology and industry best practices.

Who Manages the Institute?

The Institute is managed by a 15-member board of directors that is elected by shareholders. Board members are active members of the cleaning and restoration industry.

Which Training Programs Does SERVPRO Offer?

SERVPRO's Institute-approved school offers an employee certification training program. This self-paced program helps local SERVPRO professionals obtain certification for fire and water restoration and carpet and upholstery cleaning.

The new franchise training program is a 15-day, hands-on training program designed to educate SERVPRO location owners and employees. Continuing education courses are offered for insurance adjusters, insurance agents, SERVPRO professionals, and real estate professionals. These courses help improve emergency mitigation knowledge. We also offer a web-based training program. This ongoing, self-paced program consists of video presentations and support materials designed to reinforce learning.

What Else Does the Institute Do?

The Institute also sets industry standards and develops industry-accepted language and terminology. It is a member of the American National Standards Institute and an accredited standards developer. SERVPRO professionals are trained to adhere to these industry standards. This helps ensure that our customers always receive high-quality service that is backed by a two-year guarantee.

IICRC certification is an important component of ensuring that SERVPRO always provides customers with the highest level of service in the restoration industry. Customers can count on SERVPRO professionals to make it "Like it never even happened."

How To Protect Your Home and Family From Flooding

10/28/2021 (Permalink)

Man walking in a flooded street. Storms can be dangerous to your family and your New Bern, NC home.

It's not always easy to predict how severe the storm season in New Bern, NC, is going to be from year to year. No one can control the weather, and impending disasters don't always give area meteorologists a lot of warning. No matter how much flooding the next storm brings, though, there are a few steps you can take to ensure your home and your family are better prepared for it.

Storm Damage Prevention Checklist

You probably already have a solid maintenance schedule to keep your house in good shape. As storm season approaches, however, there are a few things to add to the checklist if they're not there already:

  • Inspect the roof for weak spots or broken shingles
  • Check for water damage or stains in the attic
  • Clean gutters and clear downspouts
  • Repair damaged siding and trim
  • Make sure windows and doors are properly sealed
  • Get professional foundation inspection
  • Test basement for leaks and install a sump pump

Storm damage restoration specialists recommend that you observe how water flows around your house when it rains. If you notice a lot of pooling in certain areas after a relatively small shower, take steps to address the problem so that it doesn't become a huge issue when a heavier storm hits your area.

Flood Insurance Upgrade

Every homeowner should have a property policy and liability insurance. These plans don't often cover damage caused by storms, though. If you live in an area that is prone to frequent flooding, you need a separate flood policy to pay for the repairs to your home if it sustains damage during a natural disaster.

If you live in a flood plain, you are probably required by law to have a separate flood policy. This coverage is a good idea even if you don't live in an area where frequent floods are expected. For example, if your house is at the bottom of the hill or if the street in front of your home doesn't drain well, a flood policy gives you an extra level of protection if these issues result in water damage.

Emergency Evacuation Plan

During hurricanes or other disastrous storms, the flood damage to your home can become so severe that it's no longer safe for you and your family to stay there. While having an emergency evacuation plan is a good idea for every homeowner, it is especially important if you live in a flood plain.

Pay attention to emergency alerts and don't hesitate to follow evacuation directives. Plan several routes that you can use to get out of town so that if your preferred path is blocked, you have another way out. Pack an emergency kit for each member of your household, including pets, that is ready to go at a moment's notice. In case your family members get separated, have a solid communication plan or meetup location so that you can check-in and confirm that everyone has made it to safety.

Flooding can pose a significant risk to the structural integrity of your home. By taking the right prevention measures and having a good plan in place for extreme circumstances, you are better able to protect your home and family.

7 Tips To Avoid a Burned Space Heater

10/23/2021 (Permalink)

Space heater. Properly use a Space Heater to avoid a fire in your New Bern, NC home.

Space heaters cause about 25,000 house fires every year. A burned space heater is often the result of safety issues with the heater or improper use. These seven tips can help you avoid this problem.

7 Space Heater Safety Tips

There are two main ways to avoid a house fire caused by a space heater. The first is to choose a safe heater and the second is to use it appropriately.

1. Purchase a Heater With Safety Features

Choose a space heater that has a safety certification label from an independent testing organization. Check for a feature that automatically turns off the heater when it overheats or is knocked over. Purchase a heater with a sturdy cord.

2. Don't Use Space Heaters Near Water

Most space heaters don't have a ground fault circuit interrupter plug. If your heater comes in contact with water it may cause an electrical shock or short circuit, which could start a fire.

3. Don't Plug Your Heater Into an Extension Cord

Extension cords and power strips are not designed to handle the electrical power required to run a space heater. Plugging a space heater into an extension cord or a power strip may cause the strip or cord to overheat, which can start a fire that requires smoke cleanup. If you need to heat an area that is farther than six feet from a wall outlet, consider other options.

4. Avoid Operating Space Heaters Near Flammable Objects

Place your space heater at least three feet away from flammable items, such as curtains, furniture, bedding, and paper to avoid a burned space heater. If a fire does start, unplug the heater. You may be able to extinguish a small fire with a fire extinguisher. If the fire has spread, call 911 immediately. You may need the assistance of a fire remediation company in New Bern, NC, to restore your home after the fire.

5. Place Space Heaters on Level Surfaces

Another common way space heaters cause fires is when they fall over or get knocked over and land on something combustible. Your heater will be less likely to tip over if you place it on a level surface. Avoid putting heaters on the edge of a table, on a surface covered in cloth, or on rugs.

6. Always Supervise Your Heater While in Operation

If your heater tips over, or catches something nearby on fire while you are watching it, there is a much better chance you can put out the fire while it is still small. However, if you leave the heater unattended, the fire is likely to spread to other areas of the home before you notice anything is wrong. If you need to leave, turn the heater off and unplug it.

7. Don't Block Exits or Doorways

Placing a space heater in a doorway may block the exit if you need to escape a fire. Additionally, people passing through the doorway may knock the space heater over.

When used and supervised properly, many modern space heaters are safe. Following these tips can help you avoid a house fire caused by a burned space heater.

Tips for Fixing a Leaky Faucet

10/14/2021 (Permalink)

Leaking Faucet. Fix the leaking faucet in your New Bern, NC home and avoid water damage.

A leaking faucet isn't necessarily an emergency, but if the problem persists, it can cause a lot of damage to the cabinets and floors underneath it. Claims may be filed with your company for remediation of the damage. Whether or not the policy covers it, it's still good customer service to have water damage remediation experts in New Bern, NC, you can trust to mitigate the damage thoroughly and restore the structure. Many insurance providers trust SERVPRO as a preferred vendor due to the fast, superior service that its team members offer.

How To Deal With a Leaky Faucet

Call the Plumber

Homeowners who don't have a lot of maintenance experience probably shouldn't begin with trying to fix a dripping faucet. It's better to call in the professionals in this case. The first thing the plumber will probably want to know is the type of faucet:

  • Compression faucet
  • Ball faucet
  • Ceramic-disk faucet
  • Cartridge faucet

Chances are that the problem can be fixed by replacing an old washer or tightening the connection somewhere within the apparatus. A qualified plumber can get the problem fixed properly so that it doesn't keep happening.

Assess the Damage

Once the leaking faucet is fixed, the mitigation team can get a clear picture of the extent of the damage. They check the cabinet in which the sink is housed for any signs of decomposition or weakness. If the wood has deteriorated due to the leak, they may use infrared cameras to inspect the floor beneath it or the wall behind it. This allows them to see how much of the structure the water has saturated. If the room is upstairs, they may need to inspect the ceiling and walls in the space below it, too.

Another benefit of partnering with SERVPRO is the Claims Information Center. The initial assessment and estimate are uploaded to the client's work order where it is available for viewing 24 hours a day. Any changes made to the mitigation plan after the assessment are also added through the CIC so that both you and the client can stay informed on the progress of the work.

Complete Mitigation and Restoration

There are two processes that must occur to fully repair your client's home. The first stage is mitigation. Technicians tear out material that cannot be salvaged and make sure the remaining structure is dry. If the water has been soaking into the walls for a long time or if it has seeped into the floor below the fixed leak, they must also disinfect the area because chances are that bacteria or mold has started to grow.

The final stage is restoration. SERVPRO stands out among the competition because its teams handle both stages. That is, the same company that completes mitigation also rebuilds and matches new materials to the existing structure, resulting in fewer delays and better communication throughout the overall process.

When you choose SERVPRO as a preferred vendor, you can rest assured that your clients are getting high-quality, efficient service when they need cleanup after fixing a leaking faucet. Certified technicians can get their homes back to normal in no time.

The Potential Risks Associated With Contaminated Flood Water

10/12/2021 (Permalink)

Contaminated water. Contaminated floodwater must be cleaned by a professional.

Whether flood water gushes from an over-flowing toilet or rushes inside from exterior flooding, that water may carry raw sewage, unpleasant microbes, bacteria, viruses, and other contaminants. While you may successfully dry up clean minor leaks and spills on your New Bern, NC, property, any category 3 water damage should be handled by professionals.

The Categories of Flood Water

There are several factors that experts use to categorize water damage:

  • The water's source
  • How contaminated the water is
  • The risk involved with exposure to the water

The classification of contaminated floodwater is important because it helps professionals and property owners determine the best course of action for the cleanup.

Category 1 Water

Water that comes from a sanitary source, such as the water dripping from a kitchen faucet or a from a burst pipe along the supply line, is "clean water." This water has minimal contamination and is relatively safe to encounter. However, if clean water is allowed to sit for an extended period, if it's exposed to high temperatures, or if it is allowed to come into contact with contaminants, the water could worsen to a more dangerous degree of uncleanliness. Although this water has a fairly positive classification, it can still cause damage and deterioration, so your quick response is crucial.

Category 2 Water

This classification of tainted water is referred to as "gray water." It could come from a dishwasher, washing machine, sink of dirty dishes, or a toilet overflow. This water may not carry feces, but it could have been exposed to urine. Detergents, chemicals, bacteria, and viruses could be present in category 2 situations. In addition to the harm caused by the contaminants, category 2 water causes primary and secondary damage when left to sit for more than a couple of minutes.

Category 3 Water

This water is dangerously contaminated and could lead to significant problems. If you have Category 3 floodwater in your building, avoid all contact with the water, including standing close enough to inhale aerosolized water. This water has higher levels of category 2 contaminants and includes other pollutants, such as stronger chemicals, heavy metals, and more dangerous microbes. This water may come directly from the sewer system or from natural bodies of water.

Cleanup and Remediation

When water damage cleanup and remediation experts arrive at your property, they may take air samples to look for mold spores, swab surfaces to measure bacterial contamination, and run lab analyses to test for E. coli and other potential infections. With this information, professionals determine the next steps, such as removing water, de-humidifying the property, and treating all affected materials, furnishings, and appliances. Once the plan is in place, you and the professionals can decide how to split the labor. Bear in mind the fact that technicians often have access to specialized equipment and supplies to improve lasting sanitization and decrease the risk of secondary damage.

When you first notice water where it doesn't belong, you may not know to extent of the contamination. If you have any reason to believe that flood water is unsanitary, contact cleanup and mitigation professionals.

Will Filing an Insurance Claim Raise My Rates?

9/23/2021 (Permalink)

Insurance claim. Maintain your property in New Bern, NC, to reduce the rate increases of the insurance claim.

Homeowners purchase insurance to cover damage caused by natural disasters and other catastrophes. However, many homeowners fear that filing an insurance claim may cause their rates to go up. This guide covers some of the basics about how filing a claim may affect your insurance premiums.

How Filing Claims Affects Your Rates

An insurance policy is a contract between you and an insurance company. The insurance company promises to pay for damages caused by covered perils in exchange for your premium payment. Most insurance contracts are for a specific period of time, such as six months or one year. Insurance companies may choose to charge a different rate or refuse to renew the contract at the end of the term. Several factors can affect whether your rates may go up:

  • Number of claims filed
  • Dollar amount of the claims filed
  • Type of claim

Types of Claims That May Lead to Rate Increases

Unlike auto insurance, whether or not the homeowner is at fault does not play a large role in rate increases. This is because a home flood caused by a hurricane is not anyone's fault. However, some aspects of homeowner's insurance are more in the control of the policyholder. For example, the water damage that is caused by failing pipes that the homeowner didn't properly maintain may be a red flag to an insurance company. In addition to water damage, claims for mold, slip-and-fall personal injury claims, and dog bites frequently result in rate increases.

Typical Amount of Rate Increases

A typical insurance claim may result in a rate increase between 20% and 40% that may last between two and five years. If your insurance company opts to non-renew your policy, you may be charged higher rates from other insurance companies or have to seek insurance in a high-risk market.

Deciding When To File a Claim

Because not all insurance companies are the same, it is a good idea to talk to your insurance agent before you file a claim. Small claims are less likely to affect your rates, but may not be worthwhile because of your deductible. Have this discussion before you need to file a claim. Otherwise, your agent may report it to the insurance company, even if you decide not to file. The safest strategy may be to only file claims when catastrophic losses occur. If a couple of shingles blow off your roof, you may want to fix that yourself. However, if your entire roof needs replaced, it may make more sense to file a claim.

Saving Money on Your Policy

If you plan to only file claims when you have a large loss, you can save money by choosing a higher deductible. You can reduce the chance of rate increases by keeping your property maintained, calling a remediation company in New Bern, NC, to address issues that can lead to mold growth, and removing hazards that could lead to liability claims.

You do not need to be afraid to file an insurance claim; however, it can be wise to choose a strategy that minimizes your chances of rate increases. Your insurance professional can help you make decisions about your policy that can save you money.

A Professional Mold Cleanup Response Is Crucial

9/21/2021 (Permalink)

Cleanup of black mold. Fast mold cleanup is essential to avoid further damage in your New Bern, NC, property.

Containing mold spores is a big problem facing property owners who consider DIYing mold cleanup, and mistakes made at any point during the cleanup and remediation process could lead to more significant damage and increased damage control costs. Hiring New Bern, NC, professionals is the best way to put a stop to further growth and to avoid more repairs in the future.

Facts About Mold Cleanup

Mold containment is a vital part of the cleanup process because of the nature of mold. Microscopic spores are found in almost every natural environment and are easily transported indoors:

  • Floating on air currents
  • Carried on shoes and clothing
  • Tracking in on pets
  • Moving through doors and windows
  • Pulled through heating and cooling systems

Once spores make their way into a new location, a little bit of moisture and organic food source (including fabric, cement, and dust) are all that's necessary to establish a new colony. Professionals take significant measures to avoid spreading mold contamination.

Mold Remediation

There are several steps involved in cleaning up existing mold growth and preventing new growth. Although each situation is unique and the cleanup details must be adapted, the cleanup process remains much the same:

  • Inspection and damage assessment determines the extent and depth of the problem and to find damage that's out of sight.
  • Containment often involves the use of plastic sheeting to seal off doors, windows, and hallways or negative air chambers.
  • Removal of mold-damaged materials requires antifungal and antimicrobial supplies and treatments
  • Proper disposal of affected materials is crucial to avoid further mold contamination.
  • Air filtration requires powerful equipment, such as "air scrubbers," for both cleaning and containment.
  • Cleanup involves the use of many techniques because of the variety of materials used in the contents and belongings of a commercial property. Carpets, furniture, and appliances must be cleaned. sanitized, and deodorized.
  • Restoration could be a simple process or require a lot of new buildings depending on the level of damage.

Within each of these steps, professionals make adjustments to appropriately deal with the type of mold, the extent of the spread, and the severity of the damage.

A Closer Look at Personal Protection and Containment

Property cleanup, repair, and restoration professionals have access to specialized training, as well as equipment and supplies. Without these products, it is hard to be sure that mold cleanup has been thorough.

Hidden mold is a huge threat to commercial properties. If you've noticed a musty smell, but you can't find the mold, you could end up with very expensive damage. Experts may test surfaces and the air to determine whether there's an unseen colony and to measure how far the colony has spread.

Cleanup technicians understand how easily mold spores can travel from one location to another. Technicians protect themselves with personal protective equipment such as boots, gloves, goggles, and other clothing.

From identifying the source of the problem to preventing new growth, the right tools are crucial. Mold cleanup requires a professional response with specialized tools, thorough training, a deep understanding of mold, and plenty of containment and disinfection supplies.

Faster to your New Bern Water Damage

9/13/2021 (Permalink)

Roof damaged by water. SERVPRO of New Bern provides 24 Hour fire and water damage restoration service.

Flooding and water emergencies don’t wait for regular business hours and neither do we. SERVPRO of New Bern, NC, provides emergency cleaning and restoration services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week—including all holidays.

Faster To Any Size Disaster

Flooding and water damage are very invasive. Water quickly spreads throughout your home and gets absorbed into floors, walls, furniture, and more. SERVPRO arrives quickly and starts the water extraction process almost immediately. This immediate response helps to minimize the damage and the cleaning and restoration costs.

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.

About SERVPRO of New Bern

SERVPRO specializes in the cleanup and restoration of residential and commercial property after a fire, smoke, or 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.

Remediation Tips for Floodwater Damage

8/26/2021 (Permalink)

Flooded bathroom. Floodwater damage in your New Bern, NC home can lead to other further damages if it is not remediated as it should.

It is not uncommon for a heavy storm to flood homes in New Bern, NC. If this happens to your house, water damage from the excess moisture is only part of the problem you must resolve. Your home must be dried and disinfected before the structure can be repaired and rebuilt. Floodwater from storms is contaminated, so extra precautions must be taken to ensure that everything it brings into your home is dealt with appropriately. Here are some tips on how to handle it.

What Is Black Water?

Water that results from a storm is very different from the substance that flows out of your faucets. Black water is contaminated, potentially containing several substances you don't want in your home:

  • Sewage
  • Grease
  • Bacteria
  • Debris

Even if you remove all the water and get every surface completely dry, you may still notice an unpleasant odor in your home. That is the result of the contaminants that the floodwater left behind. The smell will not go away on its own, and it may even lead to bigger problems as the bacteria multiply and other remaining contaminants degrade surfaces. In order to get rid of the smell and the risk, you have to remove the substances that cause them.

What Measures Must be Taken?

After flood damage mitigation specialists assess the mess the storm made of your home, they tackle the problem. They start with removal. All standing water must be pumped out as quickly as possible to avoid further damage. Then the initial drying process starts to prevent mold growth. Meanwhile, any drywall, carpet, flooring, or other porous materials that have water damage from the floodwater must be torn out. Contaminated materials are typically unable to be salvaged; technicians must replace them later in the process.

Once all the water and ruined materials are gone, the entire affected area must be cleaned. Technicians use industrial cleaners and specialized equipment to ensure not only that the surfaces are free of toxins but also that any bacteria left in cracks and crevices are gone as well. If you want to salvage any of your belongings affected by the flood, they, too, must be thoroughly cleaned and dried before you bring them back into your home. Rely on the expertise of the mitigation specialists to determine whether something can be cleaned or needs to be replaced altogether.

Even though your home is clean and dry, the restoration process is not complete until it looks like it did before the storm. The remediation team rebuilds the structure, replacing walls, flooring, and ceiling tiles. Then the technicians match the look of the new materials to the remaining structure so that no one can tell where the damage was.

Taking care of water damage from a flood may be more complicated than you expect, but every step of the process is necessary. When contaminated water comes into your home, you want to make sure that every surface is disinfected and dried before you and your family move back in. With thorough mitigation, your home will be back to normal in no time.

7 Ways To Avoid Fires When Grilling

8/26/2021 (Permalink)

Barbeque. A barbeque can provoke a fire in your Craven County, NC, home. Be sure to know these ways to avoid a fire.

Family barbeques are one of the best things about summer. However, a grill fire can turn a fun family outing into a nightmare.

These fire safety tips can help you keep the fun times going.

1. Don't Place the Grill Near Your House

It can be tempting to place your grill on your patio, porch, or balcony, but this is not a good idea. A sudden flame-up or gust of wind could lead to your house catching on fire. Additionally, smoke from your grill may cause smoke damage to your home that you will need a fire restoration service in Craven County, NC, to clean. Place your grill in a safe location that isn't too near your home or other combustible structures.

2. Don't Use Your Grill Indoors

If a rainy, windy, or chilly day is cramping your grilling style, don't try to save it by moving your grill indoors. Grills need adequate ventilation. Grilling indoors can lead to carbon monoxide poisoning. Additionally, grilling inside your kitchen, sunroom or garage is a fire hazard. If the weather is preventing you from grilling outside, save your grilling plans for another day or use a grill that is designed for indoor use.

3. Trim the Fat

Fat adds flavor and moisture to meat; however, too much fat can lead to a grill fire. When meat is excessively fatty, the fat drips into the flames as the meat cooks where it can cause flareups. Not only can flareups ruin the flavor of your food, but they can lead to injuries and property damage. Trim off excess fat before you start cooking and keep a spray bottle filled with water near your grill for dousing flareups.

4. Always Supervise Your Grill

If you are cooking something that takes a while, it can be tempting to go do something else while your food cooks. However, a barbeque fire can start when an unsupervised grill is knocked over by wind, children, or pets. Keep an eye on your grill until all the flames are out and the heat has had time to dissipate.

5. Inspect Your Grill

If you are using a gas grill, always inspect the propane tank before you light it. Small holes or loosened hoses can cause gas leaks that could lead to a fire or explosion.

6. Clean Your Grill

Improper cleaning is another common cause of fires. Grease and fatty particles can stick to the grill. When allowed to accumulate, these particles can cause flareups. Use a wire brush to scrape them off while the grill is still hot.

7. Give Your Grill Time To Cool

Once the fun is over, it can be tempting to get in a hurry to clean up the grill and put it away. However, if you put the grill cover back on while the grill is still hot, it can catch on fire. When using charcoal grills, empty the ashes into a metal container and then hose them down before throwing them out.

Grill safety is important for avoiding injuries and property damage due to a grill fire. These tips are a good place to start.

Prevention and Maintenace Keep Commercial Bathrooms in Good Condition

8/26/2021 (Permalink)

Clogged toilet with paper. Maintenance in your commercial bathrooms will avoid clogged toilets and further damages.

The bathrooms in Pamlico County, NC, commercial buildings are often exposed to hazards that residential toilets don't see. Some of the most common concerns for property owners are the clogs that occur when people flush the wrong items down the toilet. Fortunately, there are a few simple steps you can take to avoid a clogged toilet and the resulting toilet overflow:

Use a thinner type of toilet paper. The people who visit commercial bathrooms are sometimes more likely to use wads and wads of paper. Thinner paper flushes more easily.

Hang up signs reminding people where to put their garbage. Items such as toilet paper tubes and feminine products are notorious for causing clogs down the pipes. Simple signs are effective at reminding customers where to put these items.

Make sure there are plenty of garbage cans placed in the area for tissues, paper towels, feminine products, and other trash. Choose cans that are large enough to handle the amount of trash in the room and have employees regularly empty the cans.

These quick steps may decrease the number of clogs in your bathrooms and limit the cost of damage and repairs.

Other Toilet Concerns

Other common concerns related to a clogged toilet include hard water deposits, a blocked trap, and the smell of sewage from the tank. Look for hard water deposits on the inside and outside of the bowl, tank, and pedestal. These unsightly stains may reduce the water efficiency and the life expectancy of the toilet. Blocked traps occur when tissues, hair, tampons, and medications are flushed down the toilet. Sewer smells may be a result of clogs or leaks. Contacting a professional with experience in repairing toilets or cleaning up water damage is one of the best ways to respond to these problems.

Other Issues Facing Commercial Bathrooms

In addition to toilet-related problems, you need to watch out for other common issues. Some of the problems that affect bathrooms in commercial buildings include:

  • Malfunctioning ventilation systems
  • Leaking faucets and pipes
  • Slow-moving drains
  • Weak water pressure
  • Running toilets
  • Mold growth

Once these problems become apparent, contact the appropriate professionals to complete repairs and cleanup. Don't postpone corrective actions because a leaky faucet or mold growth could grow from a small inconvenience to a much larger problem within a short amount of time.

Maintenance and Upkeep

Routine bathroom and toilet maintenance can prevent a lot of water damage and other bathroom concerns. Train your employees to complete daily tasks according to established requirements. Basic cleaning is the first place to start. For example, it's important to use an appropriate cleaner to keep surfaces clean, clear, and sanitized. The wrong tools or cleaning products could cause damage rather than preventing it. Refer to official rules, post them, and make sure you keep employees up to date on any changes to those requirements.

A clogged toilet can lead to a lot of inconvenience and possible expenses in your commercial building. Preventative action before damage occurs could protect your time and budget. When trouble does happen, a quick response is the best way to get your business back on track.

Reach Out to These Four Entities if You Don't Have Flood Insurance

7/17/2021 (Permalink)

Neighborhood flooded in New Bern, NC Floods are the root of many serious problems if it's not treated on time.

Unless you are located on a specific flood plane where having flood insurance is a requirement, you likely do not have coverage for any damage caused by a storm surge or flood. While that might not be the news you were hoping to hear, you might still have options. Before you dial your local storm restoration service in New Bern, NC, contact your insurance company to discuss the specifics of your policy. If you are not covered for external flooding, then reach out to four organizations for help.

1. FEMA

The Federal Emergency Management Association might offer some relief if your area is deemed a site of natural disaster. However, without a formal declaration from the president, FEMA cannot provide access to grants. If a major disaster is declared, you can apply for a grant only for your primary home; as it is a grant, you will not need to pay the money back.

2. State or Local Government

Those without flood insurance can also reach out to state and local governments for assistance. While local municipalities might not offer grants, your local emergency management department might be able to give information on other resources.

3. Nonprofit Organizations

You can also reach out to the different nonprofit organizations in the area. Many nonprofits step up after natural disasters. Some might offer food and water, and others might provide temporary shelter to those in need. You might even find organizations like United Way, which can assist with home repairs and cleanup.

4. SBA

Finally, if you cannot find help from the above resources, try the Small Business Administration. During times of crisis, the SBA often opens up low-cost loans to those in need. SBA disaster loans typically have low-interest rates, between 4% and 8%, with loan caps of $200,000, depending on your needs.

While flood insurance is not a requirement in every area, it is something worth considering. However, even with coverage, there are ways to find assistance.

3 Ways SERVPRO Helps With Claims

7/17/2021 (Permalink)

Hurricane hitting the city. Our team is ready when you need us.

SERVPRO is an industry leader in fire and water cleanup and restoration. Claim services help insurance agents reduce costs, while also providing superior service to their clients. These are three of the ways the company can help with your claims.

1. Fast Response

The priority of our team is to provide an immediate emergency response to customers. Our team acts quickly to assess the damage and begin taking steps to prevent future damage, such as mold growth. This helps you keep costs down and helps your clients restore their property as quickly as possible. Wherever your clients are located, there is probably a franchise professional in New Bern, NC, ready to assist them.

2. Emphasis on Restoration

Restoring property costs less than replacing it. Our claim services team works to restore property whenever possible. Pretesting is completed for every loss so that we can quickly identify which property can be restored and which needs to be replaced. Our professionals have the latest training and equipment needed to clean and restore valuable documents, photos, and other fragile contents. We can also deal with odor removal and sewage issues, in addition to cleaning and restoring carpets and upholstery.

3. Electronic Claims Service

Our electronic claims service makes it easy for you to access all of the information about your clients' claims. You will be provided with an Excel formatted report and photos of valuable items and an itemized loss inventory. The electronic job file includes the first notice of loss, loss photos, estimates, and scanned forms and paperwork. You can access all pending and completed jobs and new assignments online. Additionally, you have access to job cost data and performance comparisons to industry standards.

SERVPRO claim services are designed to meet the needs of adjusters and clients. Working with our team will make the claims process as hassle-free as possible for you and your clients.

How Long Does It Take for Your Home To Dry?

7/17/2021 (Permalink)

A burst pipe in a New Bern, NC, home. If a broken pipe is not repaired as soon as possible, the water can cause big damage.

One of the most common issues that homeowners face is water damage. Sadly, the longer the water stays, the worse the problem becomes. Whether bursting pipes or a leaking roof is to blame, an immediate response is vital. The drying process of putting your home back in order may take several days or longer, so you need to get started right away.

Factors That Affect the Drying Time

It's hard to determine exactly how long it will take to recover from the damage caused by burst pipes. In many cases, it takes between three to five days, but if there are wood floors or other special circumstances, the drying process may take a couple of weeks. Some of the factors affecting the length of time include:

Source of Water - Water from a clean source, such as the kitchen tap, doesn't require the same level of specialization as flooding from a sewage backup.

Amount of Damage – Naturally, the more water from the pipes and the further it spread, the longer it will take for repairs and cleanup to be complete.

Availability of Equipment – If you have the right tools to fix the broken pipes and set up fans, you can get the drying process started almost immediately. Without the right tools, you'll have a delay as long as it takes to find those supplies.

One reason homeowners reach out to SERVPRO is that local New Bern, NC, franchisees have access to all the equipment necessary to complete the job. Water damage cleanup and repair technicians arrive Faster to Any Size Disaster because franchises are owned and operated locally while supported by corporate offices.

A Quick Start for Success

Without the right equipment, it can be difficult to determine whether the home is thoroughly dry. However, taking factors into consideration and working with professionals is a good way to get an estimate. As soon as you realize there are bursting pipes, get started on the drying process.

Should Mold Damaged Belongings Be Cleaned or Thrown Away?

6/28/2021 (Permalink)

Image of a teddy bear with water damage. Personal belongings with water damage.

Some of the things people own have a useful purpose. Others mostly have sentimental value. Some have a little bit of both. One of the most difficult decisions homeowners face after having mold cleaning done is whether to keep the mold-damaged property or throw it away.

What Property Should be Thrown Away or Kept After Mold Damage

Property That Should Be Thrown Away

If you hire a restoration company in New Bern, NC, it will try to save as much of your property as possible. However, some types of property will usually need to be thrown away because of mold damage:

  • Items with porous surfaces
  • Items with visible mold
  • Items exposed to floodwater


Common items in these categories include carpet, cardboard, mattresses, stuffed animals and upholstered furniture. Most moldy paper products will also need to be discarded. However, some items with sentimental value, such as family photos, may be able to be saved by using a freeze-drying process.
Food that is moldy or has come in contact with floodwater should be thrown out. Most food preparation items will need to be discarded because the cost of mold cleaning often exceeds the cost of replacing the items.

Property That Can Be Saved

Items that are made from materials with a solid surface, such as glass, plastic or metal, usually can be saved with mold remediation. Most fabric clothing can be washed in your usual laundry detergent unless the fabric has been damaged. Leather items usually need professional cleaning.
A HEPA vacuum can be used to preserve clothing and paper materials that did not get wet and have no visible mold. Electronics and appliances that were exposed to mold, but were not underwater may be able to be saved.

Keeping an inventory of your personal belongings on hand can help you identify which items are particularly important to try to save after mold cleaning and which can be easily replaced. Talk to your insurance company before you make any final decisions to ensure they are willing to cover the cost.

How the Fire Restoration Process Works

6/28/2021 (Permalink)

Image of a room damaged with contaminated water. Water damage in residential home.

After a house fire, things can be extremely stressful and confusing. Knowing the fire restoration process can help calm some of the anxiety.
Fire can leave you with several types of damage. These are:

  • Smoke
  • Soot
  • Water
  • Fire


A good fire remediation company in New Bern, NC, can help you with each of these types.

The Fire Restoration Process

Damage Assessment

The very first thing that a cleanup company will do is assess the damage. Some companies even work with insurance companies to make sure your damages are taken care of as quickly as possible. When you are ready for a fire rebuild, you will know exactly what is necessary.

Immediate Services

The first part of a good restoration service is the boarding and tarping. This protects your property from further water or vandalism damage.

Water Damage Restoration
It might seem strange, but water damage remediation is a big part of fire restoration. Even if a storm didn't cause the fire, there is still probably water damage. Firefighters often use water or other chemicals to put out the fire. Things that are water damaged need to be cleaned and thoroughly dried before rebuilding can begin.

Smoke and Soot Cleanup

Smoke and soot damage are some of the worst parts of the fire cleanup process. Your restoration company will remove and clean anything damaged by smoke or soot. This includes the black film it leaves behind and the strong smells. Unfortunately, this damage is more than a simple airing out can handle.

Sanitization

Once the cleanup is underway, but before rebuilding services can begin, everything needs to be sanitized. This leaves your home smelling better and will protect your belongings from molds and mildews. Most companies will utilize various chemicals and techniques to make sure your home is safe to return to.

After all of this is done, true fire restoration can begin. Each step is vital to getting your home back to its original condition.

How To Get Rid of Odors After Flooding

6/22/2021 (Permalink)

Image of an office building Flooding can cause damage to your building.

Your property in New Bern, NC, can take on a lot of damage if it floods during a storm. Between sewer overflows, mold growth and other problems, the storm damage restoration experts you hire probably have a lot of work to do. Because flood water is contaminated, a vital part of the cleanup process will include disinfecting and deodorizing every surface and item that remains in your building.

Getting Rid of Odors After Flooding

Item Salvage

Just because items are soaked from flooding, that doesn’t mean they automatically have to be thrown away. Your restoration team is trained and equipped to salvage many items damaged in the storm:

  • Electronics
  • Equipment
  • Office furniture
  • Textiles
  • Documents


Mold Remediation

Some of the odor that lingers after a storm is likely from mold growth. Fungus can start to gather and spread on surfaces in as little as 24 hours after a flooding event, particularly if the humidity levels in your building are high. By incorporating mold testing and remediation into the overall cleanup process, technicians are able to stop this secondary damage before it gets out of hand. Once the mold problem is resolved, the smell that accompanies it will be gone, too.

Structure Restoration

Standing water and sewage loss can compromise the structural integrity of your building. It is possible that part of your flooring, walls and ceiling will have to be torn out and replaced. After all the materials that can’t be saved are removed and the affected area is dried, the remaining structure must be sanitized to get rid of any bacteria that the water left behind.

Contaminated water in your commercial building can lead to many problems, including structural damage, mold growth and ruined belongings. Certified cleanup professionals can not only disinfect your building but also deodorize it. A thorough restoration process ensures that your space is free from all the effects of the storm damage so that you can get back to business as usual.

4 Steps To Take To Prepare a Fire Evacuation Plan

5/28/2021 (Permalink)

Image of a building on fire Prepare a Fire Evacuation Plan

Although hundreds of thousands of house fires occur every year, most people don't think it will ever happen to them. Having a fire escape plan in place can be the difference between life and death for you and your family. This guide will provide an overview of how to create a fire evacuation plan.

4 Step Guide to Prepare a Fire Evacuation Plan

1. Include Everyone in Your Plan

If you have any household members with special needs, such as children, pets or elderly or disabled family members, it is important to include their needs in your emergency escape plan. Assign a family member to assist them and a second family member as a backup.

2. Identify at Least Two Escape Routes

Fires are unpredictable and your first choice of escape route may not be accessible. Identify at least two ways to get out of every room in your house. Make sure all escape routes open easily and that emergency release devices are installed on any security systems.

3. Choose a Meeting Place

Your fire escape plan should include a place where your household will gather once they get out of the house. This will make it easier to account for anyone who may be trapped in the home. Choose a specific location such as a neighbor's house, mailbox or stop sign. Emphasize that if someone is not accounted for, emergency personnel should be notified. No one should return to the house.

4. Make a List of Contacts

Make a list of people you may need to contact after a fire, such as your insurance company or a fire restoration company in New Bern, NC. Store it in a safe location outside of your home.

A fire in your home can quickly create chaos and confusion. Your family will have a much better chance of escaping without injury if you have planned and practiced a fire escape plan before a fire occurs.

Reasons To Consider Professional Water Damage Mitigation in New Bern

10/2/2020 (Permalink)

Don't let complications from a water damage send your money down the drain - call the professionals at SERVPRO.

The internet has an answer for most any question we can come up with, DIY or otherwise. Yet, contrary to what this wealth of information might suggest, there are some jobs that are best suited to certified professionals. Water damage remediation is an excellent example. The technicians at SERVPRO of Craven/Pamlico are skilled and proficient at not just getting the job done, but doing it the right way. Armed with the specialized tools and know-how of over 2 decades worth of experience, SERVPRO of Craven/Pamlico is a locally owned and operated leader in water damage mitigation. Some of the many benefits of hiring professionals to take care of your water damage needs include:

Safety: The nature of the source of water that may have damaged your home or business can greatly impact the way things are taken care of. There are three different classification of water; clean water, grey water, and black water. Black water is the most concerning type of damage and can absolutely be a health concern if not taken care of properly. This is water that could have been in contact with human waste, such as toilet water and sewage. Black water is a breeding ground for harmful bacteria and pathogens.

Discreet Damages: Water will flow and pool into any area it can. This will commonly lead to water that is hidden from the naked eye, such as inside of walls and underneath of flooring. DIY water mitigation can sometimes fail to find all water and potentially lead to significantly more time consuming and costly repairs.

Less Stress: The professional restoration process means you can rest easy knowing that every effort has been made to get the job done right.

Keeping Businesses Clean in New Bern, NC

6/1/2020 (Permalink)

Be sure to wash your hands for at least 20 seconds under water as warm as you can stand.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention continues to develop new strategies and update preventative guidelines in an effort to keep people safe and informed. To help extend some of this information and keep our Eastern NC brothers and sisters aware of our services, here are some updates.

Symptoms

Illness from COVID-19 is quite diverse, from mild to severe symptoms that can potentially even include death. According to the CDC, symptoms may appear two days to two weeks after exposure:

  • Fever or chills
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headache
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Sore throat
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea

Many of these symptoms can be related to other conditions and illnesses, so It is very important to consult your medical provider if you develop any severe or concerning symptoms to determine what they are being caused by.

Expert Level Cleaning Services

The SERVPRO franchise professionals here at SERVPRO of Craven/Pamlico are uniquely prepared and equipped during this unprecedented time to clean and disinfect your home or business according to the protocols set forth by the CDC. We have decades of experience in dealing with biological contaminants and other, similar pathogens. Our crews go beyond the scope of work that regular janitorial staff perform on their regular cleaning schedule.

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. We follow all guidelines as provided by the CDC and local authorities.

Need Specialized Cleaning Services?
Call Us Today: (252)-637-7274

Tips and Best Practices to Minimize Your Risk

As our cities are beginning to reopen in “phases”, it is imperative to maintain vigilant, proactive measures to continue protecting yourself and others. Here are some tips to minimize your risks and exposure:

Practice Good Hygiene

    • Clean hands with sanitizer of at least 60% ethanol or 70% isopropanol content and wash your hands frequently
    • Avoid touching your face and cover coughs and sneezes
    • Disinfect “high touch” surfaces like doorknobs, light switches, tables, doorknobs, and handrails regularly
    • Increase ventilation by opening windows or adjusting air conditioning

At The Office

    • Don’t shake hands – use other noncontact methods of greeting
    • Use videoconferencing for meetings when possible
    • When video calls aren’t an option, hold meetings in open, well-ventilated spaces
    • Disinfect “high touch” surfaces like desks, keyboards, light switches, doorknobs, and telephones
    • Consider adjusting or postponing large meetings or gatherings
    • Wear a mask to help protect others
    • Maintain social distancing regardless of time and place

Stay Home if...

    • You are feeling sick
    • You have a sick family member at home home

Sources:

SERVPRO of Craven/Pamlico Counties Can Handle Your Water Damage Needs

4/15/2020 (Permalink)

Handling water damage is something often and appropriately left to the professionals. On the surface it may seem like something easy to do yourself but there are some serious considerations any would-be DIY enthusiast should keep in mind before embarking down the path of self-remediation. For instance, did you know that the way a water loss is cleaned up depends on many different factors?  The science of water damage mitigation doesn’t allow for a one-size-fits-all kind of formula. One of the most impactful and variable of all these factors is the category of water in question. If unaware, there are actually three categories of water damage:

Category 1 – Often referred to as “Clean Water,” these cases come from water sources that do not contain contaminants that could pose potential threats to humans. This would include sources such as a broken supply line, a tub overflow or malfunctions with water lines leading to appliance failure, such as an ice maker line.

Category 2 – We use the term “Grey Water” when referencing water that contains a significant amount of chemical, biological or physical contaminants. These cases are typically from toilet overflows (urine only), sump pump failures and overflows from dishwashers or washing machines.

Category 3 – The most severe of water damage categories, we call this “Black Water.” These types of contamination are extremely unsanitary and can contain a wide variety of harmful bacteria and possible disease-causing agents. These types of water damage are most commonly found from sewage backups, toilet overflows containing feces and flood waters from rivers, streams or seawater.

The way we approach cleaning for each category of water is drastically different. Category 2 and 3 water losses are particularly important to handle correctly as there are strict protocols to protect the health and welfare of our employees and customers.  At SERVPRO of Craven/Pamlico, we follow all IICRC and OSHA standards to ensure the safety of everyone involved. Regardless of the category it falls under, if you experience a water damage in your home or office, call us anytime at 252-637-7274.

SERVPRO is Here to Help during this time of need

3/18/2020 (Permalink)

No matter your needs, the professionals at SERVPRO of Pitt/Greene are ready to help.

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 Craven/Pamlico, (252)-637-7274.

Helping New Bern Landlords With Turnovers

2/14/2020 (Permalink)

Make your property look its best with SERVPRO of Craven/Pamlico.

One of the common and often frustrating things for landlords to handle are tenant turnovers. Even commercial and industrial settings aren’t immune from the frustrations that the wrong tenant can cause. We here at SERVPRO of Craven/Pamlico counties understand this and are equipped to help get your property in condition for the next person or business.

A professional cleaning can remove years of accumulated dirt and potentially add a tremendous impact on the presentability of any given property. Being certified for trauma and biohazard cleanup, we can take on the toughest of scenarios; Even “hoarder” like conditions aren’t beyond our capabilities. We are more than happy to assist for a single instance or with a recurring schedule for apartments and other rental facilities. For more information about how we can help you with turnovers or any other cleaning and restoration needs, give SERVPRO of Craven/Pamlico counties a call today at: (252)-637-7274.

How To Handle A House Fire

2/5/2020 (Permalink)

The ash and soot from a fire can cover a wide area in a short amount of time.

Coming home to a house fire isn’t something that anyone would want. Depending on the severity of the aftermath, you may decide on trying to handle the situation yourself. If so, here are some things to consider.  

Closely Monitor Exposure

Soot and ash from a house fire contain toxic health hazards that are best dealt with under controlled circumstances. Ash and remnants of burnt structures can cause irritation to the skin, eyes, nose and throat. Those with asthma are particularly susceptible, but nearly anyone can have breathing issues if over exposed and under protected.

  • Don’t allow any children or pets nearby if possible, as any toys or belongings will need to be thoroughly cleaned before they are safe.
  • Always attempt to wear protection for your skin and if direct contact is made, wash the area immediately to avoid irritation.
  • Don’t use fans or other wind-generating devices that might spew the ash into the air. If sweeping and disposing of ash, be sure to seal and double bag it to further reduce the chances of the ash becoming airborne.

Of course, if you feel overwhelmed and need some outside assistance you can count on the locally owned and operated SERVPRO of Craven/Pamlico Counties. No matter how large or small the job may be, we can help you with all your fire and water damage restoration needs.

Give us a call anytime at: (252)-637-7274.

Helping New Bern Residents With Water Damage

2/5/2020 (Permalink)

The faster you react to water damage, the more damage you can prevent.

Be it from a loose shingle that leads to a leaking roof or a refrigerator supply line with a few too many years behind it, water damage can occur in nearly any home, at any time. While regular maintenance and astute observations can go a long way in helping us keep our homes in their best shape, sometimes damage is simply unpreventable. Arguably the worst part of this is, (depending on the source of the water), many of our most precious items—the things that make our house a home—can become seemingly irreparably damaged. That's where we here at SERVPRO® of Craven/Pamlico come in. We are well-equipped and prepared to help in any situation, including the times where a particular family heirloom needs to be saved at all costs. Rest assured, we will do all that we can to get those sentimental items back in the best possible shape. 

If you or someone you know finds themselves needing professional cleanup & restoration services, the compassionate experts you can trust at SERVPRO® of Craven/Pamlico Counties are Here To Help® 24/7. Give us a call at: 252-637-7274.

How SERVPRO can help Craven and Pamlico Residents With All of Their Needs

1/17/2020 (Permalink)

Don't let muddy feet ruin that favorite carpet of yours--call SERVPRO and let us take care of it!

We all know what it’s like—a family pet comes in with muddy paws after a rainy day or “has a little accident”; A child is overly excited about a new TV show and knocks over their fruit punch; You spill some coffee in your morning sprint to get to work after far too little sleep and a few too many hits of the snooze button—the trials of life love to send some chaos our way. Even with being our most diligent selves, performing regular maintenance on our homes—sometimes things slip past us. Every now and then it can be a bit much to take care of everything by yourself.

Worry not! That’s where we come in; no matter the size or situation, you can count on your locally owned and operated SERVPRO of Craven/Pamlico Counties to take care of your cleaning and restoration needs. Our expert technicians will help you manage and restore your home, giving you some much needed peace of mind.

Some of the many services we provide are:

  • Air Ducts & HVAC
  • Carpet & Upholstery
  • Drapes & Blinds
  • Contents Disposal
  • Deep Cleaning
  • Debris Removal
  • Ceilings, Walls & Hard Floor Removal
  • Deodorization
  • Mold & Mildew Remediation
  • Biohazard Cleanup
  • Crawlspace Services

Many know of SERVPRO as a worldwide leader in Fire and Water Cleanup and Restoration, but our professionals can make much more "Like it never even happened." Call us today at (252) 637-7274 to schedule an appointment.

New Bern, NC Residents, Let us Take Care of your Flooded Home or Business

2/8/2019 (Permalink)

Dishwashers are a convenient and quick way of handling a dirty task. As much as they may be appreciated, they can cause some unexpected problems such as a leak in the middle of the night. This could leave your New Bern, NC business or house in dire need of water extraction and clean up that may be beyond your means of handling. The water damage remediation experts at your locally owned and operated SERVPRO® are more than equipped to handle such a situation.

Our experts know that the longer water remains on an effected area, the more damage it can cause. This knowledge is critical and motivates our crews to get your home or business taken care of as quickly as possible. Our crews are prepared to respond to an emergency water damage situation 24/7, giving you peace of mind that whenever you might need us, we are #HereToHelp.

Our crews are also equipped with advanced tools to determine where moisture is present and subsequently remove it. One of these tools—an extractor—can simultaneously remove water while also applying heat to help dry the space it is extracting water from. We also have pumps if there is larger pools of water, and of course, the materials we need to cleanse and sanitize any affected areas.

Give us a call whenever you need us at: (252)637-7274 and we will be more than happy to make your damage "Like it never even happened."®

Smoke Detector Tips for your New Bern, NC Home

1/30/2019 (Permalink)

How Many Fire Alarms Do I Need in My Home?

The number of detectors needed can vary greatly depending on the layout of your home. The National Fire Protective Association, however, recommends fire alarm placement:

  • In every bedroom
  • Outside the sleeping areas on all bedroom levels
  • On all levels of the home including the basement
  • At the bottom of stairways, including the basement stairs

What Type of Smoke Alarm Do I Need?

Ionization smoke alarms are the best at detecting hot, fast-moving fires, whereas photoelectric smoke alarms are best at detecting slow-burning smoky fires. If a fire alarm equipped with both technologies is available, strongly consider opting for it. If not, using a mixture of the two throughout your New Bern, NC home should work nearly as well.  

Make sure your detectors are connected.

In the event that you have a house fire, having connected fire detectors can give you an even faster alert of trouble. This is especially important in loud environments or larger homes, as you may not be able to hear the alarm in the affected area until significant fire and smoke damage has occurred.

Be sure your detectors haven’t expired.

Smoke alarm manufacturers place the build date on the back of the detector. You should replace your detectors after 10 years from that date has passed, unless the manufacturer recommends a different replacement time.

Keep your batteries fresh and ready to go.

Many people replace their batteries on a set schedule, such as a specific day to remind themselves. Others wait until their detector begins a low-battery beep. If you prefer waiting until the alarm, be sure to replace all batteries at the same time.

Fire alarms are a must-have safety device in any home. They are very low maintenance, provide years of service, and can give you and your family peace of mind.

Of course, there is always a chance that even with the best preparation, unforeseen circumstances can happen. Just remember, if you or someone you know is in need of professional cleanup or restoration services, our 24/7 emergency crews here at SERVPRO® of Craven/Pamlico Counties are #HereToHelp. For questions or information, give us a call at: (252) 637-7274.

Always Here for New Bern, NC Residents

1/14/2019 (Permalink)

Your locally owned and operated SERVPRO of Craven/Pamlico Counties are available 24 hours a day for fire and water emergencies. If you have suffered from water damage, our crews can get to you fast to take care of the situation. This fast response is important, since just a few hours can make a huge difference.

Always here for you

Dealing with an emergency can be a stressful, frustrating, and emotional experience. We here at SERVPRO understand this, and are here for you throughout the process. If you need experts that are compassionate as well as capable, call us at: (252) 637-7274.

Prepared to help

If you do call us for an emergency, we will ask you a few things to gauge the situation and to prepare our responding personnel with the correct equipment. We may ask questions such as:

  • Your name and contact information
  • The address we are needed at
  • If you have applicable insurance coverage, and through what company
  • The estimated time of emergency (remember, time is crucial!)
  • The cause of the emergency, if known
  • What steps have been taken already
  • Is there power available for our crews to use

If you or someone you know finds themselves needing professional cleanup & restoration services, the compassionate experts you can trust at SERVPRO® of Craven/Pamlico counties are Here To Help® 24/7 at 252-637-7274. #LikeItNeverEvenHappened #HereToHelp

Moisture in your New Bern, NC home or business

1/14/2019 (Permalink)

Moisture in older homes

Older structures are more susceptible to moisture after heavy rain, meaning water can sometimes seep in or leak where it shouldn’t be. In small doses over wide intervals, it may not do any noticeable damage, but If the issue occurs more frequently and is left untreated your home or business may receive permanent damage. Enlisting experts like your locally owned and operated SERVPRO can help to eliminate this problem and save you considerable time and money in the long run.

Getting you dry

Our professionals can help you immediately by using specialized equipment to extract water and dry the affected area. Our equipment can get underneath the surface of carpets and into the padding, eliminating moisture all the way through. We can also help you in the long run by cleaning the structure and contents with our safe, effective sanitizing treatments. These preventative measures keep unwanted growth away and prevent materials from swelling or corroding.

Verification

To further give peace of mind, we check under your crawlspace (if applicable) to make sure no further damage has occurred. We also check your subflooring and inspect the layers of your carpeting and padding to verify our extraction methods have fully dried out the affected area. Lastly, we will test the humidity to ensure it is in an acceptable range, indicating that moisture levels are low enough to prevent secondary damages. Once completed, we can walk through with you and explain what we did, how we did it and of course answer any other questions you may have.

For more information, please call us at: (252) 637-7274, or visit us at our website.

New Bern, NC Residents, is Your Business Prepared for an Emergency?

1/14/2019 (Permalink)

Many businesses aren’t prepared for emergency damages that can cripple productivity and longevity. That’s why the professionals at SERVPRO® offer a business ready plan app called the SERVPRO® Emergency READY Profile—or ERP—at no-charge so you can prepare for Water Damage, Fire Damage, Smoke Damage, Mold, or a Bio-Hazard contamination. This plan could save you hundreds or even thousands of dollars and give you peace of mind that in an emergency, you have a plan.

Typically, the faster the response time to an emergency, the better the chances of minimizing primary and secondary damage. We here at SERVPRO are known to be “Faster to Any Size Disaster”, and are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week—meaning you can rest assured that we are here for you any time, any day.

Of course, there is always a chance that even with the best preparation, unforeseen circumstances can happen. Just remember, if you or someone you know is in need of professional cleanup or restoration services, our 24/7 emergency crews here at SERVPRO® of Craven/Pamlico Counties are #HereToHelp. For questions or information, give us a call at: (252) 637-7274.

How we help New Bern, NC residents after a fire

1/7/2019 (Permalink)

What to do after a fire

If you find yourself wondering what to do after a fire occurs, getting in contact with the available 24/7 experts here at SERVPRO (252) 637-7274 can help you quickly get on the path of restoring your home. Time can be of the essence in such situations, as often times the heat from a fire can damage your home’s structure, leading to further damage from exposure to outside elements. Firefighting methods can also cause water damage—thankfully we here at SERVPRO are more than ready and equipped to help.

What we can do to help

Depending on the level of damage, there are several steps we take to get you back in your home. The first thing we do is come and evaluate to see what areas need what services. Typically, firefighting methods can leave extensive water damage, which we are also well equipped to handle. We can then begin removing any materials which have been damaged beyond repair. This can be walls, ceilings, flooring, personal goods and more—we do it all! After that, we can begin cleaning your home and items to remove stubborn soot stains and the persistent scent of smoke.

Here to help

The professional restoration services available at your locally owned SERVPRO® of Craven/Pamlico counties are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week if you or someone you know is in need of expert Fire & Water – Cleanup & Restoration™ services.

Getting and Keeping New Bern NC Residents Dry

1/2/2019 (Permalink)

Even If you find yourself up to your knees in water, we here at SERVPRO are ready to help

From a leaking roof to a dishwasher gone awry, water damage can occur in nearly any home, at any time. While we can try our best to prepare for these potential hazards, sometimes damage is inevitable. Unfortunately, depending on the source of the water, this can often lead to our most precious items—the things that make our house a home—becoming damaged. That's where we here at SERVPRO come in. We are well-equipped and ready to help in any situation, including getting those sentimental items back in the best possible shape. 

If you or someone you know finds themselves needing professional cleanup & restoration services, the compassionate experts you can trust at SERVPRO® of Craven/Pamlico counties are Here To Help® 24/7 at 252-637-7274. #LikeItNeverEvenHappened #HereToHelp

Christmas Tree Tips for New Bern, NC Residents

12/12/2018 (Permalink)

Christmas is nearly here, and for many of us, that means it’s time to put up a tree and start the seasonal decorating. But as fun and festive as it might be, there are some risks and tips that you may want to consider to keep you and your family safe:

Keep it Cool

Nearly one out of every four Christmas tree fires is caused by being located too close to a heat source. This can dry your tree out and raise the chances of a fire as well as increase the intensity if one does occur.

Keep it Hydrated

Regularly watering your live tree is another important step that will not only make for a safer home, but keep your tree healthy and green. It can also make cleaning up after the holidays much easier than that of a dried out tree, which sheds pine needles significantly faster.

Keep it Proper

A further one in four Christmas tree fires is caused by electrical issues. Be sure to use proper lights that are rated for your intended application. Be especially mindful if decorating outside that you use outdoor-rated lights!

Keep it Calm

Keeping a fire-extinguisher nearby is another consideration, just be sure to review how to properly use one with everyone in your home. And remember, if you ever have doubts in an emergency situation, evacuate and dial 911!

Of course, the professional crews here at your locally owned SERVPRO® of Pitt/Green & Craven/Pamlico counties are available 24 hours a day if you or someone you know is in need of expert Fire & Water – Cleanup & Restoration™ services.

Fire Preparedness for New Bern, NC Residents

12/12/2018 (Permalink)

A fire extinguisher pressure gauge

New Bern, NC residents, do you have a fire escape plan in case of an emergency? Being prepared and having a plan of action could make all the difference in case of an emergency. Here are some tips to help.

Protective Equipment

Having properly operational smoke detectors in your home can give you crucial time to respond to a fire. Be sure to change their batteries on a frequent basis.

If you keep a fire extinguisher in your home, it is important to periodically check its pressure levels to ensure functionality. Keeping the right type of extinguisher nearby can be another important factor; for a list of the different types of extinguishers and how best to use them, click here.

Have an Escape Plan Planning out what to do in an emergency with your family every few months helps to keep everyone ready and aware. Going through your home looking at exits together and discussing where to meet if you get separated is a great way to stay prepared.

Emergency Contacts

Keeping a list of family doctors, medicines and medical information such as allergies can help responders provide you with the best possible care. Having family members in your emergency contacts can also enable you or others to quickly get in touch with those you love.

What to do After a Fire

Even if a fire doesn’t directly damage a large portion of your home, the smoke and soot as well as any water dispersed by the fire department may leave you needing professional restoration services. Of course, we here at your locally owned SERVPRO® of Pitt/Green & Craven/Pamlico counties are available 24 hours a day if you or someone you know is in need of expert Fire & Water – Cleanup & Restoration™ services.

Cold weather tips for New Bern, NC Residents

12/12/2018 (Permalink)

With winter nearly upon us, the temperature is starting to drop to some uncomfortably low levels. Make sure you and your loved ones stay safe and comfortable with these helpful tips.

For Outside

Cooler temperatures mean even quick trips to the store can be enough to give us the chills. While making us look cool, what we choose to wear when we go outside can also make a huge difference in how well we regulate our temperature and maintain our comfort level.

  • Being one of the more well-known methods for a reason, dressing in layers is an effective way to keep your body insulated and warm. Just be sure not to bundle up too much if you’re going to be active—if you start to sweat, it can siphon the heat away from you when you stop to rest.
  • Aside from headgear, such as hats and beanies, another common piece of winter attire many of us wear is gloves—but did you know that mittens are actually more effective at keeping your hands warm? If you are prone to getting cold and staying outside for more than a quick walk, mittens might be a great way of keeping those digits delightfully cozy.
  • Along with the cold temperatures comes dry air which accelerates dehydration. Be sure to drink plenty of liquids, especially warm ones if possible. This will help you regulate your body temperature as well so maybe it’s time to consider that hot cocoa! In fact, staying warm takes a lot of energy from our bodies, so a little extra sugar in your beverage of choice might seem a little less concerning. Just enjoy in moderation.

For Your Pets

Animals get cold in the winter time too—try and keep them indoors as much as possible to keep them happy, healthy, and ready to put a smile on your face with their unique charm.

  • If it proves impossible to bring an animal inside or if a pet will be exposed to cold conditions for a prolonged period of time, be sure to provide a dry, windproof shelter that is capable of keeping them out of the elements.
  • When bringing a pet back inside during wet conditions, be sure to dry them thoroughly so they can warm back up and look their best for all your holiday photos.
  • Just like you, pets can become dehydrated quickly in winter conditions. Be sure your pets have a fresh, clean and unfrozen water source to keep them going strong.

For Your Home

Preparing your home for cold weather is an easily (and often) overlooked consideration that can quickly escalate into some serious problems. Try some of the following tips to keep your home and family protected.

  • One of the most common heating sources for houses and apartments is gas-powered furnaces. While effective at their job and generally reliable and safe, like any mechanical device, there is a chance for different kinds of failures. To avoid the risk of carbon monoxide building up, be sure to put new batteries in existing carbon monoxide detectors or install new ones if your home is not yet equipped.
  • Make sure to shut off outdoor faucets and insulate them with foam, as they are more directly exposed to temperature drops. Don’t forget to drain and disconnect any hoses to keep them in good condition for when you need them.
  • Cold temperatures can also put your pipes in danger of freezing and consequently bursting from the pressure. Pipes in your outside walls, crawlspace, and attic are especially prone to this, so be sure your pipes are adequately insulated. This could potentially save you and your home from an unexpected repair.

Of course, there is always a chance that even with the best preparation, unforeseen circumstances can happen. Just remember, if you or someone you know is in need of professional cleanup or restoration services, our 24/7 emergency crews here at SERVPRO® of Pitt/Greene & Craven/Pamlico are #HereToHelp.

Freshen Your Ride!

4/9/2018 (Permalink)

One of our technicians using a fogger to eliminate odors from a vehicle.

Picture this. It’s 80 degrees outside, you’re getting in your car and ready to head to work or the grocery store or the pool when suddenly it hits you. A whole winter’s worth of stale crumbs, pet dander, and random clutter. Colder weather prevents the growth of odors, but when cars start to heat up it seems like the smells begin to ferment and build up. You suddenly regret all the times you had your dog in the car or scarfed down some fast food while you were in a hurry to pick up a friend or make it to an appointment. Experts say that odor elimination is made easier and more effective by frequent and preemptive carpet and upholstery treatments. That’s where we come in! SERVPRO of Craven/Pamlico Counties offers premium deodorization services.

Everyone loves a fresh-smelling car, but sprays and air fresheners can only do so much to mask odor. SERVPRO, however, has the training and equipment to permanently eliminate offensive odors. We are capable of complete odor elimination or even scented deodorizers ranging from “lemon fresh” to “tropical delight” to “cinnamon. With state-of-the-art equipment such as ULB foggers, Ozone Generators, Vapor Sharks, and Air Scrubbers, we’ll fulfill our company motto and make it seem “like it never even happened”. Our services also consist of eliminating the source of the problem, i.e., in-depth cleaning of all surfaces and materials of your vehicle and removal of any kind of unwanted foreign material.

Call Us Today at (252) 637-7274

Are you Deep-Frying your Turkey this Thanksgiving?

11/7/2017 (Permalink)

With the popularity of turkey frying increasing every year, people are at risk for fryer-related fires and injuries. U.S. fire departments are responding to more than 1,000 deep fire related incidents each year. According to the National Fire Protection Association deep fryer fires result in more than $15 million in property damage each year. Here are some rules to follow when deep frying a turkey.

Don’t Deep Fry a Frozen Turkey Frozen turkeys are full of moisture. Make sure your turkey is completely thawed out because water and hot oil don’t mix well.

Don’t Let Oil Get Too Hot If you see your oil smoking, it is too hot. When oil gets around 400-425-degrees it can catch on fire by itself. So, when deep frying a turkey most oils should stay around 350-degrees.

Don’t Use Too Much Oil When deep-frying a turkey a common mistake people make is putting too much cooking oil in their pot. Overfilling your pot can result in the oil spilling over into the flame on the burner. If you need to figure out how much oil you need try putting your turkey in an empty pot, fill the pot with enough water to cover the turkey. Once you remove the turkey mark the water line.

Don’t Deep Fry Indoors You should never deep-fry a turkey in your house, garage or on a deck. You should always deep fry a turkey in a yard away from anything that’s flammable.

Hopefully, this Thanksgiving will go smoothly. However, if a fire does occur and your Greenville home suffers fire damage, it can be especially devastating. In addition to the fire and smoke damage, your property may have substantial water damage from firefighting efforts. SERVPRO of Pitt / Greene Counties has the specialized fire and water damage equipment and expertise to help you through this tough time. Call Us Today – (252) 329-7205

Why you should Clean Your Gutters!

10/24/2017 (Permalink)

Why you should Clean Your Gutters!

Fall is here and leaves are beginning to fill your gutters. The main purpose of gutters is to collect rainwater and direct it away from the house. So, when your gutter is clogged with leaves, twigs, and other debris they are no longer functional. If your gutter becomes clogged it can lead to the water finding a different way to drain from your roof. Water taking a different course can cause:

Leaking Basements. If gutters are clogged the extra water will collect around the basement and eventually leak in.A leaking basement can be extremely dangerous because it can cause gas leaks and other pollutants inside of your home.

Cracked Foundation. Foundation cracks occurs when water is absorbed into the home. A cracked foundation isn’t easy to spot and can lead to damage in between walls and eventually cause mold.

Wood rot. Sometimes the foundation of home can be made out of wood. A clogged gutter can cause water to accumulate and overtime the wood will rot.

Staining. Water can overflow from a clogged gutter and cause exterior damage to the home.

It is recommended that you clean your gutters twice a year, once in the spring and a second time in the fall. Taking time to focus on cleaning out your gutters may help keep water out and prevent damage to your home. If your Greenville property has been damaged by water caused by flooding or water leaks, we have the experience, expertise, and equipment to restore your property properly. Our water removal and cleanup process also provides validation and documentation that your property is dry. Call Us Today – (252) 329-7205

How to Prevent and Fight Grease Fires!

10/5/2017 (Permalink)

Did you know that Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, and Christmas are the 3 biggest days of the year for grease fires? Grease fires occur when cooking oil becomes too hot. First the cooking oil starts to boil, then it starts to smoke followed by a fire. A grease fire is different from a regular fire, so the way you handle it is very important.

How can you prevent grease fires?

  • Keep an eye on the food you are cooking regularly. Do not leave it unsupervised for extended periods of time.
  • When frying, grilling, boiling, or broiling food, stay in the room.
  • Do not leave anything that may catch fire near the stove top.
  • Be extremely careful when placing food into hot grease.
  • DO NOT ADD WATER TO GREASE.

If your oil does catch fire, complete the following:

  • Turn the Heat Off
  • Cover the Pot with a Metal Lid - Fire cannot exist in the absence of oxygen. With the lid on (and the heat off), the fire should quickly consume all the oxygen and put itself out. Use a metal lid since glass will shatter.
  • Pour Baking Soda
  • Spray the Pot with a Class B Dry Chemical Fire Extinguisher
  • Get Out and Call 911 - If the fire does break out of control, don't try to be a hero. Get out and find a phone to call 911.

Hopefully you never have to experience a grease fire! But, if you do and your Greenville home or business suffers fire damage, it can be especially devastating. SERVPRO of Pitt / Greene Counties has the specialized fire and water damage equipment and expertise to help you. Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage? Call Us Today – (252) 329-7205

Vacant homes can be breeding grounds for mold growth

9/6/2017 (Permalink)

Vacant homes can be breeding grounds for mold growth. Quite often we are called to a vacant home that is up for sale or the renter has moved out. The realtor/rental agent has come to show the home and finds mold growing on the walls. Mold can be seen growing most often in the upper wall locations, though it is not unusual to see growth at the lower wall levels as well. Closets that have been closed will quite often have the worst mold growth, partly because they are dark and mold loves the dark.

What could cause this? No broken water lines are found, the water is usually turned off to the home. Sometimes the HVAC system is off and that is the source of the problem. Having the heating and air turned off creates a high humidity level in the home. When the HVAC system is off there is no airflow circulating in the home therefore the air becomes stagnant. This is the perfect scenario for mold development.

Here are some tips on preventing mold issues in vacant homes:

  • Always keep some heat and air running in the home. Set temperature so heat or air runs periodically during the day.
  • Open closet doors to allow for airflow and light to enter.
  • A ceiling fan left on low can help circulate the air in the home.
  • Open window treatments/blinds at least ¼ open to allow in extra light. Remember, mold loves the dark.
  • Visit the home occasionally. Just opening the doors and entering the structure allows for the exchange of fresh air and extra airflow. It’s also a great way to catch any issues before they become serious problems

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 SERVPRO of Craven/Pamlico Counties Today – 252-637-7274

Hurricane season is heating up!

8/18/2017 (Permalink)

Flooding from Hurricane Matthew in 2016 caused serious damage in Eastern North Carolina.

Hurricane season is heating up! August and September are the prime months for Tropical Storm and Hurricane development. Keep a close eye on tropical weather forecasts and potential impacts to your area. Forecasts give ample warnings to allow storm preparations to be completed. Please listen to the experts and take all needed preparations before storm arrival. If evacuation is ordered, you should follow that advice.

While it is important to protect your home and property, don’t forget to prepare for you and your family’s needs both during and after a storm’s impact. Below is a list of items that are good to have on hand in the event of a storm.

Don’t forget to plan for your pets as well. Extra pet food and a pet carrier or indoor kennel may be needed as outdoor pets will need to be brought inside during the storm or taken with you if evacuation is ordered.

SERVPRO of Craven/Pamlico 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.

We also have equipment and teams ready to go at SERVPRO of Craven/Pamlico Counties in case you have an emergency.

Resources to Handle Floods and Storms

When storms hit Craven and Pamlico counties, 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.

Be Prepared

Before the storm hits make sure you have a basic disaster kit ready. Having these supplies ahead of time will save you the frustration of going to the store right before the storm hits. Below are some recommended supplies for your kit:

  • Water
  • Battery-operated lanterns
  • Battery-operated radio
  • Extra batteries
  • Flashlight
  • Matches
  • Can Opener (non-electric)
  • Duct Tape
  • Extra blankets
  • Clean Clothes
  • First Aid Kit
  • Food (3 day supply)
  • Garbage bags
  • Dust Mask

Every homeowner can do things around your home now to save you time when you need it.

  • Move furniture away from windows
  • Remove outdoor items
  • Anchor / secure non-moveable outdoor items (tables, swing sets, trampolines, etc.)
  • Fill gas tanks of vehicles
  • Fill propane tanks (may need for cooking if power is out)
  • Board up windows
  • Get extra cash
  • Trim dead branches from trees
  • Store important documents in waterproof containers 

Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today at (252) 329-7205 or (252) 637-7274

New Bern Smoke and Soot Cleanup

4/6/2017 (Permalink)

Smoke and Soot Damage Can Cause a Pervasive Odor in Your New Bern Home.

Smoke and soot is very invasive and can penetrate various cavities within your home, causing hidden damage and odor. Our smoke damage expertise and experience allows us to inspect and accurately assess the extent 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

There are two different types of smoke–wet and dry. As a result, there are different types of soot residue after a fire. Before restoration begins, SERVPRO of Craven/Pamlico Counties 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. Here is some additional information:

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.  We have the equipment, expertise, and experience to restore your fire and smoke damage.  We will also treat your family with empathy and respect and your property with care.

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call Us Today – 
252-637-7274

Craven and Pamlico County Residents: Follow These Mold Safety Tips If You Suspect Mold

3/13/2017 (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 Craven/Pamlico Counties 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 Craven/Pamlico Counties 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 – (252) 637-7274

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