Recent Posts

Does Your Homeowners Insurance Cover Mold Damage?

6/27/2022 (Permalink)

words about insurance coverage on a blurry dark background with a SERVPRO orange logo Perils covered by homeowners insurance policies vary. SERVPRO of Central St. Petersburg cleans microbial contamination. Free estimates: (727)-521-2562
  

The perils covered by homeowners insurance policies vary depending on the insurer.

Mold damage can be costly and happen anywhere, so several insurance companies have restricted or eliminated coverage for this risk under standard policies. If you are concerned about fungus growth at a residence, try to identify the problem's source first, then check your policy for mold coverage.

The Cause of Mold Damage Matters

Restoration experts commonly refer to mold as secondary damage, as fungal growth typically results from direct water damage.

Insurers are more likely to cover mold damage that results from one of the following covered incidents:

  • Appliance leaks
  • Broken or burst pipes
  • Pipe leaks

Even if a policy does not cover the cost of fixing the problem, the resulting damage may be covered. Check your policy and contact an insurance agent or adjuster.

3 Ways Insurers Limit Mold Coverage

Many homeowners insurance providers have removed or limited the amount of coverage for fungus growth because it is a higher risk peril. Since mold can grow practically anywhere, anytime in the right conditions—it’s not exclusive to one geographical location. Because of this an insurer may restrict coverage in these ways:

  • Exclude mold damage completely
  • Only cover microbial testing or cleanup
  • Refuse coverage on properties with a history of mold

Read your policy carefully to determine whether there are any conditions under which mold is covered. If mold is not covered, you may want to add an endorsement.

What Is an Endorsement?

It may be possible for policy holders to pay for limited mold coverage. Ask your insurer whether any endorsements are available. This option may be costly, especially if your residence has a history of mold.Homeowners should determine the limitations of their coverage and decide whether to obtain additional mold insurance.

Paying for remediation out of pocket can be very expensive. The best way to prevent mold growth is to mitigate water damage and potential damage. Don’t be caught without the right mold insurance.

Storm Damage vs Flood Damage: What’s the Difference?

6/27/2022 (Permalink)

gray clouds in sky from storm approaching over a field, SERVPRO logo in corner Don't hesitate to call SERVPRO of Central St. Petersburg / Pinellas Park if you have property damage.

Storm Damage vs. Flood Damage and Dealing with Insurance

Property owners in Florida may have a hard time differentiating storm damage from flood damage—which is important when considering insurance coverage.

Commercial properties can sustain water damage from both flood and storms, but there are a few significant differences to keep in mind that may help you manage these risks.

The most general distinction is that stormwater comes from above, whereas flood water overspills natural bodies or watercourses and covers at least two acres of ordinarily dry land.

Storm damage to a commercial property may originate from a variety of causes such as:

  • High winds
  • Heavy rain
  • Hurricanes
  • Snow
  • Tornadoes

Most business insurance plans protect from storm damage. Property owners need additional coverage to offset the expenses of flood damage. If your property is located on a flood plain, you should make sure you carry the policies necessary to protect your property investment.

Flooding occurs when water overflows a body of water or watercourse such as:

  • Creeks
  • Dams
  • Lakes
  • Storm-water channels

In order for water to be considered a flood, it must cover two acres and affect at least two properties.

If a commercial property is located in a high-risk zone, and the owner has a mortgage from an insured and federally-regulated lender, they must maintain flood insurance. Risks tied to flooding and storms should be known, minimized, and dealt with as soon as possible. Regardless of a moisture source, the risk of mold and other secondary damage within a building can be looming over the aftereffects of large, disastrous water events.

Restoring Damage From Storms and Floods

Restoration specialists can help property owners determine the precise causes of damage and the best solutions. If a property in Florida experiences flood damage or sustains damage during a storm, contact SERVPRO of Central St. Petersburg / Pinellas Park at (727) 521-2562 as soon as possible.

Reduce Business Disruption After a Commercial Disaster

6/22/2022 (Permalink)

two black and white people holding an ipad with the SERVPRO ERP app, orange background, green stripe on right, SERVPRO logo Contact SERVPRO of Central St. Petersburg / Pinellas Park at (727) 521-2562 to get started on your SERVPRO Emergency Ready Profile today.
  

After a major disaster, businesses suffer a variety of interruptions like:

  • financial and emotional stress
  • production downtime
  • sullied reputation
  • a plethora of other strains.

In the time period following a trauma like a fire, flood, pipe break, or other form of disaster, making the right decisions can be taxing and confusing. At SERVPRO, we regularly see local companies go through this and want business owners to know we are here to help after a commercial disaster. Part of that help comes through an emergency readiness checklist and disaster plan.

How To Minimize Risks and Loss of Revenue?

Creating a disaster readiness plan for your business can save you thousands on your bottom line, and can save your business, entirely. And the planning process does not have to be overwhelming when placed on top of all other responsibilities. Central St. Petersburg / Pinellas Park is here to help take the weight off your shoulders by developing an Emergency Ready Profile for your company. Knowing you are, "Ready for whatever happens," will give you, your clients, and employees confidence if or when your business is affected by a disaster.

We Generate A Plan For You

By developing a SERVPRO Emergency Ready Profile, you minimize business interruption by having an immediate action plan. Knowing what to do and what to expect in advance is the key to timely mitigation and can help minimize the severity of water and fire damage on your business.

SERVPRO Emergency Ready Profile Advantages Provide You With:

  • A no-cost assessment of your facility.

    This means there is no need to allocate funds, giving you a great value at no cost.
  • A concise Profile Document that contains only the critical information needed in the event of an emergency.

    It will only take a little time to complete and will not take you away from current projects, but will save a lot of time if ever needed.
  • A guide to help you get back into your building following a disaster.

    This helps minimize the amount of time your business is inactive by having an immediate plan of action.
  • Professionals at SERVPRO of Central St. Petersburg / Pinellas Park, established as your disaster mitigation and restoration provider!

    You have a provider that is recognized as an industry leader and is close by for an emergency response.
  • Identification of the line of command for authorizing work to begin.

    This saves time so we can start cleaning up the damage, so you can reopen your business as soon as possible.
  • Specific Facility Details of your business such as shut-off valve locations, priority areas, and priority contact information.

    You will have a quick reference of what to do, how to do it, and who to call in case of an emergency so that you are "Ready for whatever happens."

Contact SERVPRO of Central St. Peteresburg / Pinellas Park at (727) 521-2562 to get started on your SERVPRO Emergency Ready Profile today.

We are here to be your total solutions provider during an emergency commercial disaster so you can do what’s important: taking care of your clients, employees, and other business needs. 

Water Damage 101: What Are the Categories of Water Cleanup?

6/21/2022 (Permalink)

stream in woods after rainfall with muddy water, potential flood water causing water damage, murky brown water, SERVPRO logo If you are unsure which water damage cleaning method to take after any type of flooding, call us. We are available 24 hours.

Unexpected water in your home—where it shouldn’t be—isn’t something that should be overlooked. Whether the water damage appears to be minimal or overbearing, understanding the type of water and accompanying damage is important to ensure proper cleanup and restoration.

Types of Water

Any kind of flooding needs to be immediately addressed to ensure further damage doesn’t occur. Before grabbing the mop and bucket or wet vacuum, it is vital to understand the type of water that is being dealt with because there are three categories of water. These three categories vary by what type of contaminants makes up the water. The categories of water damage that restoration companies like SERVPRO of Central St. Petersburg / Pinellas Park use are:

Clean Water: As its name suggests, this type poses little threat. This damage occurs when a water supply line leaks, a sink or bathtub without contaminants overflows, melting snow, or rainwater infiltrates the home.

Gray Water: Once water mixes with chemicals or minimal biological contaminants, it moves to this category. Sources may include a leaking dishwasher, urine-only toilet overflow, or water condensation.

Black Water: This is unsanitary water full of bacteria and microorganisms which bring potential harm to humans and animals. If there was a recent flood, it could mean those rising water included sewage and other debris. Flood water from storms is usually in this category. 

Types of Damage

When assessing water damage to determine repairs, understanding the types is important.

Class 1: The least harmful kind, it typically means that a minimal amount was absorbed in the affected areas. It is usually easy to clean.

Class 2: Known for quick evaporation rates, it can quickly absorb into carpeting and other porous materials. This damage typically requires more extensive repairs.

Class 3: If a sprinkler or pipe bursts, it can rapidly drench floors, walls, furniture, and other belongings. The rapid rate of evaporation requires quick action and water remediation measures to ensure the damage doesn’t spread or promote microbial growth.

Class 4: Excessive flooding means massive saturation of integral home components. Consulting a water damage and remediation expert is the best bet containing the situation and ensuring further damage doesn’t happen.

I Have Extensive Water Damage—What Should I Do?

While there are many levels of water damage, quick action in all situations is key to getting your home back to normal. If you are unsure which cleaning method to take after any type of flooding, call us. We are available 24 hours. Our number is (727) 521-2562. We'll assess the level of contamination quickly to advise you on the safest course of action.

By hiring a cleaning contractor like SERVPRO of Central St. Petersburg / Pinellas Park, you:

  • Reduce your likelihood of exposure to pathogens.
  • Mitigate long-term problems like microbial growth.
  • No longer have to worry about either cleanup or reconstruction—we do both!
  • Salvage flooring, furniture and important personal belongings.
  • Don’t have to hassle with insurance—we do that for you!

Humidity: Primary and Secondary Damages Explained by Restoration Experts

6/21/2022 (Permalink)

moisture meter, blue, held by a servpro technician, used to determine the moisture left in an area, on a surface, white wall Call SERVPRO of Central St. Petersburg / Pinellas Park restoration experts to mitigate primary and secondary damage due to storm, flooding, and water.

Different Types of Water Damage

Whenever excessive moisture gets inside a building, the problems it causes can be broken down into two categories: primary and secondary damage.

Primary Damage

When water leaks from a pipe or an appliance, it comes in contact with contents and building materials. Anything that happens due to direct contact with liquid water, such as the carpet's de-lamination, is considered primary damage. 

Secondary Damage

Once water gets inside a structure, it naturally raises humidity levels indoors when moisture from wet materials evaporates into the air. Elevated humidity levels can also cause building materials issues since water transfers from the air into dry materials to reach equilibrium. When water vapor causes structural problems, it is called secondary damage.

Extraction procedures help reduce primary issues, and structural drying helps mitigate both primary and secondary water damage. When our SERVPRO technicians deal with any water damage situation, we monitor both relative and specific humidity.

What Controls Humidity?

Controlling humidity levels in a structure helps speed up structural drying times. Wet materials dry out faster if the humidity inside a building is kept low using air movers and dehumidifiers. Monitoring and strategic placement of these devices optimize drying times. When we keep humidity levels low, we also reduce water vapor in the air, causing fewer secondary issues. 

Relative Humidity

Relative Humidity (RH) is a measure of how much water is in the air at any given temperature. RH is expressed as a percentage, so if the relative humidity is 100%, then the air is holding as much moisture as it can at that temperature. At this point, if not sooner, condensation can occur inside the building. "Raining" inside your home can only exacerbate the already water damaging effects. Air can hold more water at higher temperatures, so increasing the house's temperature will lower the relative humidity. That is one of the features of our HEPA filters. Not only does the filter suck the moisture from the air, but it also heats the air to dry the space quicker.

Specific Humidity 

The temperature has such a significant effect on relative humidity, but it's not always a good gauge of how much water exists in the air. Specific humidity is the actual amount of moisture in the air. When our restoration professionals measure specific humidity, they count the actual grains of moisture in each pound of air. To find specific humidity, we measure relative humidity levels and the room's temperature. We then put these numbers in a psychrometric chart that gives us the grains per pound (GPP) number. 

If you ever need help with issues related to water or humidity, such as flood damage, storm damage, or microbial growth, call SERVPRO of Central St. Petersburg / Pinellas Park at (727) 521-2562, available 24 hours a day.

4 Things to Know About Standing Flood Water

6/21/2022 (Permalink)

an animated family walking through orange and green background, simulating flood water carrying their belonging, SERVPRO logo Call SERVPRO of Central St. Petersburg / Pinellas Park at (727) 521-2562 if you have water damage that caused flooding near you.

After a flood, you may wonder what to do next. It's normal to feel lost, confused and stressed after a flood impacts your area. How do you prepare for water damage or contaminants in black water? Here are four aspects of standing flood water you should know about.

1. Water Can Be Electrically Charged

Some overflow waters can be electrically charged. If there is working power in your home, you need to take the utmost care to ensure the water isn’t pulsing with electricity. When it comes time to have flood water restoration professionals help you, your safest option is to turn off all power until you or they have finished cleanup.

2. Pathogenic Contamination

Blackwater is a major category of consideration for standing water, particularly after a backed-up sewer or storm. This floodwater occurs after 24 hours and is considered to be full of pathogenic contaminants. This water can be full of garbage, mold, and even sewage.

3. Look Out For Mold Growth

Mold can grow in as little as 24 hours and as late as 72 hours after the water has been stagnant. Warm, moist areas tend to be perfect for mold growth. After a flood, one of the most common types of damage people have to deal with is the mold that grows on everything from furniture and other items in the house—to walls themselves.

4. Get That Water Out

Removing the water should always be the first step when it comes to cleanup. It’s essential to make sure the black water is taken out as soon as possible before it ends up further damaging your home. Never let water sit in your Florida home; use a professional to help clean it up.

The damage caused by a storm can be intense, and it can be challenging to know which steps to take when you have extensive water damage. You don't have to go through this process alone. Call SERVPRO of Central St. Petersburg / Pinellas Park at (727) 521-2562 for additional information regarding storm damage. Our professional team will help you every step of the way. We really are Here To Help®.

4 Easy Ways to Prevent Water Damage

6/16/2022 (Permalink)

sink drain with a gloved hand appearing from the right of the screen holding a hairball, SERVPRO logo in bottom corner Check out these suggestions from SERVPRO of Central St. Petersburg / Pinellas Park for preventing all kinds of water damage.

Check out these suggestions from SERVPRO of Central St. Petersburg / Pinellas Park for preventing all kinds of water damage while your kids are home for the summer.

1. Be Careful Where You Plant. 

Some plants and trees, like weeping willows, have pretty invasive roots. If you’re not careful, they’ll grow right into your sprinkler system, drainage field, pipes, and septic tanks. Plan before you plant to keep roots away from any water lines.

2. Clean Out Your Roof Gutters.

On a rainy day, a clogged gutter can send water spilling into your home’s foundation, through the roof, or down to your basement. That could cause some severe water damage! So next time you’re doing some seasonal cleaning, make sure those gutters are clean. If your gutters are too high or you do not have the correct tools, be safe and get a professional to check and clean them.

3. Use a Drain Snake Instead of Unclogging Chemicals.

Most folks don’t realize these chemicals are eating away at their pipes. If you rely on them a lot, you could be setting yourself up for leaks. That’s why owning a drain snake is an excellent solution to clear away clogs. They’re pretty inexpensive; you can get these thin, plastic sticks with thorn-like teeth at your local hardware store. Depending on the drain snake, they can cut through most any clog you’ll have without damaging pipes. 

4. Never Pour Grease Down Your Sink.

It doesn’t matter if you flush it with hot or cold water. Grease can still cling to your pipes and could even cause some severe damage and blockage. The safest thing to do is pour your grease in an empty can and either let it sit or put it in the refrigerator. Once it hardens, you can toss it in the trash and get rid of it. Done and done. 

We know that water and flooding emergencies can happen any time, so we’re ready 24 hours a day, 7 days a week – including holidays. Call SERVPRO of Central St. Petersburg / Pinellas Park at (727) 521-2562.

SERVPRO Conducts Routine HVAC Maintenance and Cleaning

6/14/2022 (Permalink)

silver air ducts in a large commercial building near me in Tampa, FL Did you know that SERVPRO of Central St. Petersburg / Pinellas Park can inspect and clean your air ducts? Call us today!

Inspecting Your HVAC Unit Can Save You Time and Money

HVAC repair is costly and if the damage is severe enough, it can prevent you from doing business. SERVPRO of Central St. Petersburg / Pinellas Park recommends that business owners schedule professional HVAC inspections each fall and spring. Routine inspections will help you stay abreast of potential problems with your unit, minimize expenses on repairs, and keep your business up and running. 

We have identified some simple maintenance chores that you can do to prolong your system's life and increase its efficiency between professional inspections and maintenance. 

Routine HVAC Maintenance 

  1. Get a high-efficiency, pleated air filter for your system.
  2. Keep your heating units and AC free of pollen, leaves, and grass.
  3. Keep two feet of space clear of your outdoor AC and heating units.
  4. Inspect refrigerant lines every month.
  5. Replace air filters at least every 90 days.
  6. In the summer, turn off the water running to the furnace humidifier.
  7. In the fall, replace the humidifier filter and turn the water back on.

Annual HVAC Maintenance

  • Replace the carbon monoxide detector battery. 
  • Make sure your outdoor AC unit is on firm and level ground. 
  • Clean AC condensation with a bleach and water mixture. 

Caring for your HVAC throughout the year will keep your work environment air quality and atmosphere pleasant, which keeps your staff happy and content. It will save you money by improving and maintaining your energy efficiency throughout your building.

SERVPRO of Central St. Petersburg / Pinellas Park is always ready to inspect and maintain your HVAC system. We're here to answer any questions you might have. Call us today at (727) 521-2562.

We Have The State-of-the-Art Equipment Necessary in St. Petersburg

6/14/2022 (Permalink)

silicone roofing, aerial shot of a roof getting painted with seal, man working on top of it, SERVPRO logo in corner If you experience commercial storm damage, call SERVPRO of Central St. Petersburg / Pinellas Park!

Saving Facilities After Silicone Roof Water Damage in St. Petersburg, FL

As many Florida business owners know, water damage is the second most common type of claim that they can make. A staggering 20% of all insurance claims filed are related to water damage of some kind, whether this is from a pipe malfunction, storm damage, or other water-related issues. Without thorough mitigation and drying, this damage can pose challenges to the structural integrity of your business as well as the safety of employees and customers.

If your office needs commercial water damage mitigation, you can count on a certified SERVPRO team to handle the damages quickly and efficiently, so you can get back to business. No matter how large or small the disaster, professionals are dedicated to restoring your business and ensuring that cleanup is done to code.

Silicone Roofing Risks

While silicone roof coatings can help business owners with flat roofing save on electricity and other costs, there are some risks to consider when implementing this in your space after water damage strikes. These include:

  • Abrasion and tear resistance. Compared to other coatings like modified bitumen, silicone roofing is not the most durable. It can get very slippery when wet, which can make it more prone to tears. Foot traffic dropped tools, and other activities can potentially damage the coating. 

  • Attracting dirt. Silicone roofing, which is often white, can get a visible coat of airborne dust and dirt over time, darkening roofing. Clean regularly to maximize the energy-reflective nature of the roof coating and save on HVAC costs.

  • Recoating. While recoating may not be needed as often as it is for other roofing solutions, it is imperative to choose silicone compatible with your current coating. 

How SERVPRO Saves Your Facilities

Suppose you have a roof leak in your facilities. In that case, SERVPRO can use centrifugal air movers and low-grain refrigerant dehumidifiers in tandem to pull moisture off of surfaces and eliminate it, replacing the moist air with air that is warm and dry. To dry a wet ceiling, technicians may open a few ceiling panels on either end of the affected area and position equipment so that air circulates straight up and through the space between your ceiling and roofing. This placement also helps warm, dry air circulate through the affected space for better results.

SERVPRO of Central St. Petersburg / Pinellas Park is here to ensure that your business looks "Like it never even happened." Call (727) 521-2562 today for rapid disaster mitigation.

Water Restoration Professionals Know How to Dry Your Property

6/13/2022 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Central St. Petersburg / Pinellas Park is a Leader in the Storm Restoration Industry for a Reason

Harsh weather conditions like flooding, wind, and storms cause devastating damage to homes and businesses. Property damage due to water damage and flood water overwhelms many with concerns for personal safety and properties' security.

When this form of damage occurs to your home or business, the first step is to find safety, then contact a trustworthy water damage restoration company.

An immediate restoration response reduces the extent of damage done to a property. Since roof damage is likely to be accompanied by water damage—a gaping hole is a recipe for moisture and storm water to make itself at home—a quick emergency response reduces the risk for internal and structural water damage and microbial growth.

When contacted, water restoration experts will analyze the level of damage and make a judgment regarding how to begin. Professionals' main priority is to secure property before cleanup, repair, and restoration. Once a property's debris is removed from the exterior and roof repair is completed, experts move to drying and the internal cleanup of furniture, carpets, clothes, and other items. 

The Drying Process of SERVPRO of Central St. Petersburg / Pinellas Park

Oozing groundwater, especially in places prone to flooding, could cause damage, especially if no flood pump has been previously installed. SERVPRO of Central St. Petersburg / Pinellas Park has a thorough drying process.

First, our team sets up industrial-strength drying equipment such as air movers and HEPA filtered dehumidifiers. Special care is taken to thoroughly dry the area around the original leak or cavity.

If water has seeped to the surrounding areas, special drying equipment is used. It can take 3-5 days for traditional drying. However, hard-to-dry materials, such as wood floors and crawlspaces, can make the process longer.

After the property is dry, the restoration of any damaged materials can start. Restoration is the most time-consuming part, but is very important and the bulk of returning the property to its preloss condition. We strive to make a property look, “Like it never even happened.”

We are available 24 hours for emergency response. Call us at (727) 521-2562.