Recent Posts

The Steps to a Speedy Fire/Smoke Damage Restoration Process

8/3/2022 (Permalink)

According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), there is a fire department situated somewhere in the United States that responds to a fire every 24 seconds. A fire can be a frustrating experience, and the thought of restoring fire-damaged property can be overwhelming. It is restoration experts who are largely tasked with returning structures to their original state. Fire restoration entails cleaning up and the process can take weeks or months, considering the destructive nature of the disaster. 

The process may also involve demolition, property board, and reconstruction on top of projects such as soot removal, removing disturbing hazards, and debris mitigation. Notably, fire and water damage often occur concurrently. This is because the structure is doused with water while the fire department strives to extinguish the inferno. Sometimes pipes burst during the fire which leaks water into the property. The following are steps of how the fire damage restoration process is performed:

Damage Assessment

Involves a contractor evaluating the damage sustained in the fire and how smoke and flames penetrated the structure. 

Security of Property and Removing Debris

The next step includes installing fencing around the structure and boarding up openings in the property. 

Water mitigation and dry-out

The objective is to circumvent further damage caused by corrosion or mold by removing water. Personal property will be removed from the interior of the structure and roof tarps maintained during this phase of restoration. 

Smoke removal and Clean Up

This is the most intensive part of a fire damage restoration task. There is a lot of manual labor to clean soot and smoke from interior and exterior surfaces. 

Construction and Restoration

This is the final step in returning the structure to its original condition. Some parts of the structure may be totally unsalvageable during the initial evaluation, and therefore have to be removed and replaced.

At SERVPRO, we care about you and are always ready to dispatch our team of experts to help with all your restoration needs. Feel free to reach out!

A Family’s Water Damage Story

8/2/2022 (Permalink)

When I was in elementary school, my family went out on vacation to Big Bear leaving my older sister behind to watch the house. A real wise decision on my parent’s part, leaving a high schooler an entire home in the suburbs to herself for the week. 

The vacation was normal, mediocre at best; it was the events upon arriving home that marked the core memories of my childhood. My sister had flooded the entire house from clogging the upstairs toilet. My mother, enraged, asked “How in the hell did you clog the toilet?!” My sister replied, “I took a really big sh**.” Mind you, my sister was about 5 feet tall and 110 pounds at this time. 

Apparently, she sold her case well because my parents believed her. The following weeks went as any water damage restoration job would go. 

Technicians came in, assessed the damage, and proposed that nearly the entire house had to be covered in containment material and dried with dehumidifiers. 

My younger sister and I at the time would always play in the office room, and that was one of the areas that was sealed off with containment material. The area was still safe to use, but from wall to wall the room was covered in plastic. To my sister and I’s 8 year old minds, this was the perfect scene for a choreographed music video to Rhianna’s song “Shut up and Drive.” 

We worked tirelessly coming up with the perfect dance moves and camera angles on our 1080p camera recorder. The environment was a once in a lifetime set up for the perfect pop star moment. 

We finished the video and performed it for our parents who sat and watched, pretending we were the greatest stars to ever exist. The video still sits in our family's archives til' this day, a staple in our history. 

And what about my older sister? Well, about 10 years later the truth came out. She did not clog the toilet with a massive turd. Rather, she threw the largest rager to ever occur in that suburban town, and masterfully got away with it. 

Lesson learned here is that parents, though your children may make costly mistakes, there is always a positive side to every situation, even if it’s as silly as a music video made by your eight year old girls that will forever be one of the best memories kept from their childhood.

Tips to Revamp the Exterior of Your Commercial Business

7/28/2022 (Permalink)

If you’re thinking about upgrading your exterior, research what your current customers want. For instance, you could send out a survey and ask them about which improvements they’d like to see you make. You can also check out what your competitors are doing.

Exterior design provides the first impression of your business. Attention to detail and clean, thoughtful design sets an expectation for the consumer before even stepping through the door while also encouraging employees to show up and to be productive in a clean, work-friendly environment.

Exterior design encompasses both physical structures as well as personal and artistic designs such as paint color, roof shape and material, decks, patios, gardens, and more. Google, Facebook, and Tesla have designed lavish buildings and campuses for their employees by polling their employees first and then designing facilities to meet their needs, resulting in greater productivity and morale.

The color you choose for your business is important, but you’ll also want to keep in mind that you need to choose a type of paint that is going to work well for your business also. Exterior paint needs to stand up to a lot of abuse ranging from weather to being more prone to high traffic exposure as well. 

Your environment is an important factor when choosing exterior paint colors for both aesthetic and practical reasons. Vivid blues, bright corals, or pale pinks look great in a sunny coastal setting but may look out of place in a snowy, mountainous area. In areas with bright year-round sunshine, many property owners avoid dark or saturated colors which fade quickly and absorb heat, increasing cooling costs.

Ideally, an exterior scheme should have three major parts: A field color that dominates; an accent color that brings shutters, doors, and other smaller parts to life; and the trim color. Once you have chosen an appealing combination of field and trim, make it stand out with an eye-catching accent color. Feel free to go bold, but don’t go overboard.

Are You a Business Owner? Read This!

7/27/2022 (Permalink)

Property damage entails impairment or breaking of something a business owns such as business property, vehicles, merchandise, and equipment. There are two types of property damage; loss of use and physical injury. Physical injury involves damage to tangible items such as a cash register or desk. Loss of use includes something that has not suffered physical damage, although its usage is interpreted. For instance, if a truck broke down and hindered customers from accessing your business, this could be considered a loss of use. The following are the various types of property damage;

? Commercial property insurance-  covers damage to your business property from things like vandalism to storms.? Inland marine insurance-  This one covers a business property while it is being stored away from your business i.e., a warehouse. It can also cover high-value assets that property insurance does not cover.? Business interruption insurance- This can help offset a loss of income if your business has to close temporarily due to a catastrophic event such as a storm or a fire. It can also help pay lost revenue, rent, and day-to-day expenses.

Commercial property insurance is a vital coverage for business owners, particularly when running a home-based business. It aids in protecting the owned or rented property used to operate your business. For home-based owners, commercial insurance offers more coverage than homeowners insurance. It also helps protect the business's physical assets like equipment. Moreover, it can help if a fire destroys your computers, lightning strikes the structure or someone breaks into your building and steals your inventory. At SERVPRO, we work with insurance companies to ensure that your commercial property is restored following the mentioned mishaps. Reach out to us before engaging any entities to help with restoration services.

Water is Crazy!

7/27/2022 (Permalink)

Water– an essential component to human life. Liquid we depend on to fuel our busy day to day lives. A source of energy. We can appreciate water for all of its benefits and contributions to earthly functioning, but something so fundamental to life has great potential to bombard, destroy, and wash away what it once birthed into dust, like tears in the rain. 

It is the elements, those most rudimentary building blocks of matter, that pose a formidable threat to the fruits of human consciousness. Take, for example, the Indonesian Tsunami of 2004. Near 230,000 casualties, this event marks its place as one of the largest and the most detrimental natural disasters in modern history. The waves traveled at 500mph, near the average speed of a jet plane, spreading 5,000 miles from the earthquake's epicenter. 

Of course, disasters like these are an inflation of the damage water can wreak on our simple, everyday lives. We have plenty of blogs on SERVPRO of Lake Forest South and Laguna Woods on the potentialities of water damage within the business and home. Small inconveniences like these are a feature of living. But to understand the sheer force of something that shapes into the crevices of the hand when touched is no feature of living, but something sought and discovered. Harness the dynamics of water to behave in your favor. Work at a scale that will benefit you and generate the greatest impact to preserve your way of living.

Prepare an Emergency Bag for Unexpected Natural Disasters

7/27/2022 (Permalink)

In the face of natural disaster, all we can do is stay safe by being prepared. It’s hard to predict when or how a natural disaster will occur, or if it even will. But it will get you at the most unexpected time, which is why it’s smart to have an emergency bag in an easily accessible place in your home for a time you may need it to save your life!

So, what items should you have in your emergency pack? Here are some key things to invest in for your emergency bag:

  • Water
  • Nonperishable food
  • Batteries
  • First-aid kit
  • Matches
  • Toiletries 
    • Wet wipes, toothbrushes/paste, travel size soap, roll of toilet paper, garbage bags
  • Whistle
  • Local maps
  • Phone charger/Portable Battery 
  • Dust masks
  • Flashlight
  • Small fold-able emergency blanket
  • Necessary medicines and prescriptions
  • Spare keys for your home and car
  • Copy of identification cards
    • ID, driver’s license, passport, SSN, insurance cards
  • Emergency contact list
  • Change of clothes
  • Shoes

Now, what should hold all of the emergency items? Well, the items can be placed in a bucket, plastic bag, backpack, or any other method of carrying things easily. Some emergency packs even have special bags that can fold out into an emergency blanket. Specialized ones like these can be bought at stores or online.

Every home should have one of these emergency packs in case of any unexpected disaster. It is always best to be prepared. For any questions you may have regarding natural disaster and the damages it can do to your property, call our 24-hour emergency service line at (949) 429- 3188. SERVPRO is here for you!

Additional Information About Home Fire Damage

7/13/2022 (Permalink)

Imagine the most valuable belongings in your home right now. It could be an item from your childhood, or something impossible to replace because of its uniqueness. Would you be able to save this item from a fire in your home? The following are tips to protect your homes from fire damage, courtesy of SERVPRO:

? Always remember to blow out candles before leaving any room. While it may look fancy to electricity by having burning candles all around your home, they can result in a disaster if left near something flammable.? Learn how to put out a small pan fire. Also, know how to eliminate a grease fire and use the back burners with the panhandles.? Do not install smoke alarms near ducts, doors, and windows as they can fail to work properly. Ceiling-mounted alarms should be installed at least 4-inches away from the nearest wall? Keep plenty of space around your space heater and ensure it is tested for safety.

In an intricate fire, especially where plastics are burned, the acid gasses amalgamate with water vapor and heat and then penetrate crevices. Also, when surfaces cool, the gasses form highly corrosive solutions. These solutions can permanently stain or etch multiple sensitive surfaces including household appliances, precision instruments, and tools. While the chemistry of fires may vary, the most important thing is to dry out the area promptly. At SERVPRO, we recommend that you carefully consider the surfaces and materials affected. This will provide an understanding of the fire’s chemistry and enable a targeted ad informed restoration effort. Feel free to call us in case you need our exceptional services from trained experts.

Happy Summer! Here's How to Prevent and Prepare for Fires

6/15/2022 (Permalink)

A house fire is one of the most frustrating types of structural damage. Although it is fortunately not a common phenomenon, there are around 100,00 fire-related incidents in the U.S every year. If you have been in the catastrophic situation of suffering a house fire, it is always advisable to assess how much your damage or business has suffered, and all the valuables lost in the fire. At SERVPRO, it is our mandate to ensure that you are well-informed about the dynamics surrounding fire damage. The following are the three types of fire;

Flame Damage

There are several types of flame damage depending on the source of the fire. For instance, an electrical fire may have a different impact on your home or business compared to those caused by a naked flame like a match. It is pivotal to choose a restoration company that is a professional in this area and totally discerns the distinct types of fire damage. This is primarily because a poor rebuild often results in problems appearing in the future, and can make your home unsafe.

3rd Party Damage

Fire damage is not just limited to the damage caused by smoke and flames. A house fire opens the possibilities for other vulnerabilities and problems. For instance, the water used by firemen to assist eradicate the flames can be absorbed into your floorboards and walls- making them warp, leading to plaster falling off. Chemicals that were present in the fire will need to be cleaned by an expert to circumvent any future damage. Further, the heat from a building fire can cause damage to your walls, leaving holes and cracks. These holes serve as an easy access point for rain and other weather issues. Filling the cracks and holes is not enough as they could be masking more grave problems. Ensure that your premise is inspected by a structural engineer.

Smoke Damage

This sort of damage is a long-lasting impact of fire damage and can persist for weeks or months after the fire is extinguished. To illustrate an idea of how smoke damage works, you can smell smoke on a person that is just from a cigarette break, because smoke sticks to objects. In the same manner, it will stick to walls, furniture, ceilings, and flooring. Smoke will discolor surfaces in your house, making them difficult to clean. A certified restoration professional will know exactly how to clean all your items and remove smoke damage completely.

If you have encountered fire damage and need advice on dealing with your insurance company, feel free to reach out to SERVPRO of Lake Forest South & Laguna Woods. We are a fire damage restoration professional and will work with you to ensure your home or business gets back to normal as soon as possible.

Stay safe!

SERVPRO Has Your Back

6/13/2022 (Permalink)

Your home and/or business are the most significant investments you can make in your lifetime. When the structures are damaged by storms, floods, or fire, you need certified professionals by your side to render the appropriate restoration solutions. SERVPRO is here when disaster strikes. With over 250 service locations across the globe, our trained experts can be at your home when you need us 24/7. We will evaluate the damage, write up a custom proposal to restore your premises to pre-catastrophe condition, and get to work immediately to complete, stress-free solace of mind in a devastating time.

Residential Damage Restoration Services

Calamity barely waits for the appropriate moment to strike your home. When it occurs, the damage can be beyond anything you can repair personally. At SERVPRO, our experts discern those attitudes of frustration and helplessness and render scheduled emergency services to make it right. From water, and fire damage remediation to property evaluation and certified tree removal services, our company is here with professional, customized aid to restore your home. Our entire range of residential restoration services includes:  

? Storm Damage- For all her beauty, nature has a dark side, When it appears, our services providers are on standby with advanced tools and equipment necessary to return your home to its former glory. We handle damage from rainstorms, thunderstorms, tornadoes, and hurricanes. SERVPRO has helped restore hundreds of homes cleaning up and disposing of all sorts of debris.? Fire and Smoke Damage- The team at SERVPRO uses the most advanced testing techniques available to investigate both the internal and external fire damage to your structure. After offering you the right estimate of the treatments required for full restoration, we get to work. Be it smoke or odor removal, we strive to restore everything promptly and efficiently and guarantee that you are satisfied with the outcome.

We also offer mold remediation, tree removal, personal property damage assessment, and water damage. Feel free to call us anytime you need our services. 

Smoke and Fire Damage Tips for Southern California's Summer

6/13/2022 (Permalink)

The periods after a fire can cause frustration. SERVPRO recommends the following tips to fire damage restoration to help you prevent damage to your home or business.

Smoke and fire damage tips:

?Do not try to clean upholstered furniture or carpets. The wrong procedures could intensify the damage.?Do not try to wash flat painted walls devoid of consulting your professional cleaner.?Avoid using electrical appliances that have been exposed to water or fire. They could malfunction if unchecked.?Avoid consuming food exposed to fire or smoke?Do not touch anything because soot on your hands can permeate woodwork, and walls causing further damage.

If you have suffered loss caused by fire or smoke; the following are various ways you can handle the damage before a restoration company visits to assess the damage.

?Cover carpeted traffic areas with old linens or towels to avoid annexed soiling.?Brush-vacuum any loose soot particles from carpets, drapes, and upholstery.?To prevent porcelain bath fixtures, wipe residue to avoid etching?Send clothing with heavy smoke damage to an expert who can dry clean them?Air out the house to eradicate smoke odor, if the room is above 60 degrees

Regardless, we advise that you get in touch with your insurance agent promptly. One the initial phone calls, you need to contact your insurance provider. Prior to engaging with plans to restore your premise, inform your agent concerning the damage so that details of the policies can cater to any overlooked or missed aid. For instance, a fire report entails the pivotal details surrounding and contributing to the fire damage. It also involves mundane information like the date and time, location, and source of the fire. All this data is vital to your insurance claim. Feel free to reach out to SERVPRO, we will take care of everything!