Recent Posts

How To Remove Lint From the Dryer

5/18/2021 (Permalink)

Horizontal photo of female hand taking the lint out from dirty air filter of the dyer machine By regularly cleaning your dryer, you can reduce the chances of a lint fire.

Ways To Save Your Home Fire Damage

Home fires do not only occur in the kitchen. In fact, the laundry room is another common location of blazes. Specifically, a lint fire can break out if your dryer is not cleaned properly.
Luckily, removing lint from the dryer is a fairly easy process. Following the basic steps listed below can help save your home from severe fire damage.

1. Clean the Lint Screen Each Time the Dryer Is Used

You should easily be able to find and remove the lint screen on your dryer. Take out the screen and clear off the lint before placing a new load of laundry into the appliance. Use your hand or a cleaning brush to remove the lint. Then dump it in the trash so it doesn’t start a lint fire.
Every few weeks, you should take the extra step of rinsing the lint screen in the sink. You may want to put some soap on the screen, as well. Continue applying running water until the screen is completely clear.

2. Regularly Vacuum the Screen Vent

After you pull out the lint screen, you should also check the vent that was holding it. If you see any excess lint in the vent, use a vacuum attachment to remove the debris.

3. Deep Clean Every Six Months

Both the vents and the inside of the appliance should be cleaned twice a year to prevent a dryer fire. To deep clean, the vents, start by unplugging the dryer and removing the exhaust hose. Use a vacuum attachment, rod or cleaning brush to take any lint out of the hose. You can similarly remove the access panel and remove lint from any visible areas.
By regularly cleaning your dryer, you can reduce the chances of a lint fire occurring in your Woolwich, ME, home. If a blaze does damage your property, you need to get it repaired as soon as possible. You should thus contact emergency restoration specialists immediately.

How To Stay Safe and Minimize Loss During a Flood

5/13/2021 (Permalink)

Flash flood Stay safe during a flood.

Flood damage is something that many business owners have experienced. You can follow a few steps when faced with a flood to stay safe and minimize the amount of loss you experience.

What To Do Ahead of Time

There are steps that you can take before flooding occurs to protect yourself and your business. The most effective way to get proper protection is to purchase a flood insurance policy. Here are some other things you can do to protect your business:

  • Find a storm restoration company
  • Know your risk of floods
  • Create an inventory of all your items
  • Store important documents somewhere safe

Steps To Minimize Your Loss
Aside from these crucial things, there are several steps you can take to minimize your property damage from flooding. For instance, you can elevate and anchor all of your critical utilities, such as electrical panels, propane tanks, sockets, wiring, appliances, and HVAC systems. Another permanent thing you can do is waterproof the basement level of your building and install a sump pump. These pumps can greatly reduce the amount of damage to your building.
You may also need to do some things when rising water levels are predicted, such as clearing out your gutters. When you do this, it may also be wise to put your furniture and valuable equipment in a higher location.

Don’t Forget About Physical Safety
When flooding is imminent in Harpswell, ME, you must put yourself and your employees' safety first. You can do this by staying up to date with the local weather reports and news releases. You can also create an evacuation plan that shows your employees how to get to safety if necessary.
Floods and storm damage is something is a common threat to business owners. To protect yourself, your employees, and your business, you need to know how to prepare for the situation and minimize your loss.

When Is Smoke Damage to a Commercial Building Covered By Insurance?

5/10/2021 (Permalink)

Soot tags on wall and on ceiling Smoke damage in Topsham, ME.

Smoke damage is one of the most frequent insurance claims in Topsham, ME. Soot and smoke seek out every nook and cranny, often leaving a toxic residue that can fry electronics and smell terrible.
Fortunately, in most cases, commercial insurance covers smoke cleaning, restoration and replacement. There are some exceptions, so knowing what is and isn’t covered can avoid denied claims and premium increases.

What Can You Do To Increase Your Chances of Being Covered?

First off, have your policy in a safe place and make sure you read it. Make notes of any questions you have and ask your agent. Remember – you’re the customer here. If they won’t answer your questions, find a company that will.
There are a few other steps to take, including:

  • File your claim as soon as possible.
  • Document everything and take pictures.
  • Don’t discard damaged items.

When Is Smoke Damage Covered?
While it varies between policies, all fire damage insurance policies should cover everything damaged by smoke from any covered fire. Where there’s fire, there’s smoke, so it’s a covered peril.

When Isn’t It Covered?
If the damage doesn’t exceed your deductible, it won’t be covered. Therefore, it’s best to consult with a smoke and soot damage restoration expert in Topsham, ME. They can help you avoid making a claim that’s likely to be denied and can save you thousands of dollars using an ecologically friendly policy of restoration over replacement.
Another instance where smoke and fire damage isn’t covered is in some cases of arson. If the insurance policyholder is in any way found to be responsible for, or have prior knowledge of, the fire, no damage will be covered by your policy.

What if the Smoke Is From an Off-Property Fire?
Most insurance policies make no distinction about the source of the smoke. If a business next door to you has a fire and the smoke causes damage exceeding your deductible, you should be covered.
Put simply, if the fire is covered by insurance, the smoke damage will be. The sooner it’s cleaned, the faster you can resume normal operations.

Dealing With Soot and Smoke Damage After a Fire

3/26/2021 (Permalink)

wooden structure of a bedroom burned Smoke damage on wooden structure of a bedroom.

If your home in Brunswick, ME, has sustained, the restoration process isn’t always cut and dry. Even if it is a small fire, smoke damage that isn’t properly addressed may seem like it never goes away. Understanding the effects of smoke and ensuring proper cleanup are essential in restoring your home back to “Like it never even happened.”

Common Types of Damage

It’s important to know that not all smoke and soot damage is the same. Some types are easier to clean, while others can smear or permeate the porous materials in a home. There are four common types of damage:

Dry Smoke: Fast-burning, high-temperature fires produce this kind of smoke. It is usually a powdery texture that is easier to clean than other residues left behind. This type can find its way into hidden areas, leaving a long-lasting odor behind.
Protein Residue: Most associated with kitchen fires, it tends to be easily missed. Although it may not leave visible streaks behind, it has a strong odor and discolors surfaces.
Fuel or Oil Residue: This type is not often associated with a home fire, but it can happen if a furnace experiences a puff back. This residue is dense and hard to clean.
Wet Smoke: If the fire was smoldering at low heat, the damage left behind is considered wet smoke. It is also associated with burning rubber or plastic. It is especially odorous and leaves behind sticky, black smoke damage that smears if not properly cleaned.

Cleanup Process
While the damage left behind can feel overwhelming, there are professionals available to help that are trained on all forms and techniques of smoke cleaning. A fire damage and restoration specialist can focus on cleaning and restoring as much of your belongings as possible via an array of industrial techniques. From ozone machines to eliminate hidden odors to numerous methods of soot removal, the damage can be eliminated the right way.
Smoke damage is one of the many negatives of experiencing a fire. Having a better understanding of what you are facing and finding the right help makes it easier to deal with the cleanup process.

What Is a Flood Cut?

3/26/2021 (Permalink)

drywall removal from a water damage from a roof leak Flood cuts performed in a Bath, ME building.

Here's How To Complete A Flood Cut

When your Bath, ME, building floods, whether a result of heavy rainfall, a burst pipe or another type of disaster, flood cleanup must begin immediately. Flooding can lead to numerous problems (e.g., contamination, mold growth) to various materials and surfaces, even drywall. Drywall will probably require you or storm damage cleanup professionals to perform a flood cut because water can soak in and through it, making it impossible to dry. This can shortly lead to mold growth.

1. Remove Excess Water
First, you'll need to stop the water flow and extract all of the standing water. Drywall soaks up water, so the water will wick up and through the wall. This means you'll also need to remove water-soaked carpet and padding and clear the affected area as much as possible to reduce humidity.

2. Shut Off Electricity
Turn off electricity at the breaker box and remove electrical outlets that were not affected by moisture. Any outlets that have been exposed to water should be removed and disposed of.

3. Measure
Then, you'll need to determine how much drywall to remove. If the water level was less than two-and-a-half feet, you need to cut out the drywall to a height of four feet. A higher water level than two-and-a-half feet requires a tear-out at the height of eight feet.

4. Cut and Remove Drywall
Using chalk, mark a straight line where you're going to cut above the line of the flooding. With a utility knife, cut about half-way through the drywall's thickness. Carefully loosen and remove this piece. Then, remove all of the insulation behind it.

5. Dry the Area
When all of the affected material is removed, you can use fans, blowers and dehumidifiers to dry the area.
Indoor flooding can cause multiple potentially serious issues. Begin drying immediately to minimize as much damage as possible.

3 Signs Your Shower or Bathtub May Be Leaking

3/15/2021 (Permalink)

Leakage of water from a shower cabin with glass wall that is damaged A shower leak in an Arrowsic, ME home,

3 Signs Your Shower or Bathtub May Be Leaking

A bathtub leak or a shower pan leak may result in permanent harm to your bathroom. Such a leak may go unnoticed for a significant period of time, leading to wood and sheetrock decay and extensive mold growth in out-of-sight areas. Water damage may end up severe enough to require the services of a professional cleanup and restoration company in Arrowsic, ME, to handle. It is important to recognize potential indicators of such an issue so you can identify and correct them as soon as possible.

1. Peeling or Flaking Paint
When you have a shower or bathtub leak, the liquid can pool under the paint in your home. Over time, prolonged exposure to water can cause the paint to crack, peel and fall off in flakes. Such symptoms may present themselves in numerous areas, including:

  • The bathroom wall
  • The roof
  • The walls of other rooms

2. Mold or Mildew
Mold and mildew thrive in damp places. Dark, cool atmospheres with plenty of moisture serve as the perfect environment for these fungi to propagate. If you begin to notice a musty mildew smell or visible colonies, your bathing fixture may have sprung a leak, causing water to gather.

3. Water Stains
A major indicator that you might have a shower or bathtub problem is water stains spreading across the ceiling right beneath your bathroom or in the walls. Drywall often shows such signs in this kind of situation. If you have sheetrock, it may develop a saggy appearance, particularly if it is directly under the restroom.
If you have a bathtub leak or a shower pan leak, you need to find it and deal with it swiftly to mitigate possible negative consequences. You may have to employ an expert to tear out walls or ceilings to get to the issue. Fortunately, while insurance companies may not shell out for the replacement of a broken shower pan, they generally cover expenses for handling the damage caused by one.

How Restoration Companies Improve Fire Restoration Efforts

2/24/2021 (Permalink)

Interior and exterior views of a new under construction building with drywall installation A fire restoration company is pivotal in easing the stress and burden of fire cleanup.

How Restoration Companies Improve Fire Restoration Efforts

In minutes, sparks can fly, quickly consuming most if not all of a commercial building. Fire crews battle the flames, attempting to control the situation and salvage what they can for owners. What happens, though, when the smoke clears and blaze dissipates? Proprietors in Georgetown, ME must face the destruction and hazards, swiftly working to secure and restore the premises. A fire restoration company is pivotal in easing the stress and burden of fire cleanup. The establishment is a customer's one-stop-shop for repair and insurance aid.

1. Around the Clock Response
Like much in life, disasters happen at the worst times, usually when most people are home sleeping. Commercial owners cannot afford to sit and wait for help with a fire rebuild; instead, they require assistance at the moment, even if it's in the middle of the night. Vendors such as SERVPRO understand this need, so they maintain a call line and an emergency crew, capable of working with proprietors at any point in the day and any day of the week.

2. Project Management From Start to Finish
Returning the space to normal isn't simple. It's a complex process that involves numerous parties and efforts. A fire restoration crew has a project manager that coordinates everything. Proprietors won't have to keep up with multiple numbers and companies. Insurers rely on one place to provide information and documentation.
During fire cleanup, this relationship is invaluable. Owners and insurers must expect to take care of all of the following stages:

  • Board up windows, doors and holes
  • Tarp weak areas of the roof
  • Extract moisture left from the fire hose
  • Eliminate smoke odor
  • Assess for mold and mildew
  • Tear out structurally damaged materials
  • Clean the air units
  • Scrub walls and floors
  • Perform content cleaning
  • Replace ruined structures

3. Invaluable Experience
Because so much is looked at with rebuilding services, owners and insurers benefit from collaborating with knowledgeable staff. With IICRC certification to meet national standards, both parties can feel good about sanitizing the property.
Fire restoration is a sophisticated, systematic effort. With the assistance of a professional group, owners are reassured that issues are handled correctly and timely.

What is Category 1 Damage?

2/17/2021 (Permalink)

Air movers and dehumidifiers placed in the hallway of a building, drying up wet area If you spot clean water damage, be sure to call in professionals to help.

No one wants water damage in their building. If your commercial building in Phippsburg, ME, is experiencing an issue with water damage such as a broken supply line or a burst pipe, it's important to understand the three categories of water damage. After figuring out what type of category your water damage is, you can begin the clean-up and restoration process.
Category one, or clean water, is the least severe type of water damage. It is considered the least severe because it does not contain any contaminants. Category two, or gray water, is mixed with chemicals or other contaminants. Category three, the most severe, is also known as black water. This type of water damage can contain bacteria and viruses.

Causes of Category One Damage

Category one can come from many sources. However, in order for it to be classified as category one, it must come from a sanitary source. Examples of sources of category one water are:

  • A broken pipe
  • An overflowing sink or malfunctioning appliance
  • Melting snow or ice

Although clean water is the least severe category of water damage, it is still important to prevent lasting damages.

Clean-Up and Restoration From Category One Damage
The clean-up process for category one water damage is the easiest and quickest out of all the categories. Your first step should always be to contact a water restoration company to help you mitigate damages and restore your building. A restoration company will help by eliminating any standing water and removing any building materials or furniture that has been damage. The company will likely also dry out your building and help get air circulating to speed up this process.
Category one water damage poses the least risk to your building, but it is still important to clean it up as quickly as possible. If you spot clean water damage, be sure to call in the professionals to help you get your building back to its original state.

3 Factors That Affect the Amount of Time Required for Mold Removal

2/3/2021 (Permalink)

A professional disinfector in overalls processes the walls from mold. Mold removal services in Woolwich, ME.

3 Factors That Affect the Amount of Time Required for Mold Removal

Mold is prevalent in buildings of all kinds, including commercial ones. This is true even if it is not visible to the naked eye because its spores still float through the air. The pervasive fungus is capable of thriving in virtually any environment that is cool, damp and dark and grows on almost any substance. It also feeds off of nutrients in construction materials such as paper, wood and fabric, potentially leading to decay and compromised structural integrity in a property over time. Black mold and other forms of mold growth also tend to negatively impact an establishment's image if in plain view of customers/clientele due to the negative connotation associated with its presence. To avoid these consequences, owners of places overtaken by the invasive microbes may wish to hire a professional remediation service in Woolwich, ME, to handle the mold removal. As time is valuable in and out of the business world, it is important to understand how much of it might be taken up by the cleanup process and the factors affecting that amount.

1. Location
Where the mold growth is located impacts how long the mold removal takes because some areas are more difficult to access than others, including:

  • HVAC systems
  • Under flooring
  • Behind walls
  • Beneath ceiling tiles

2. Surface
What it grows on can also complicate removal, lengthening how long the procedure takes. Porous materials such as concrete, fabric, insulation, drywall and particle board more easily collect and retain the moisture mold loves, attracting it. The fungus infiltrates and sticks to the many crevices and holes in these materials, making it harder to root out. In certain cases, they may have to be thrown out and completely replaced due to the difficulty involved in getting rid of it.

3. Amount
The size of the infestation correlates directly to the time necessary for completion. More mold takes more effort and more hours to remediate.
In general, mold removal may take between three and seven days, depending on the extent of the damage and the circumstances mentioned here. While mold cannot be completely erased, third party testing is a good method to determine if remediation is complete.

We are Growing!

1/14/2021 (Permalink)

men standing next to SERVPRO banner We are growing, SERVPRO of Bath/ Brunswick and new franchise!

We are Growing!

According to a Jan. 13 press release, longtime owner Bill Frysinger of Northport has sold the franchise to a neighboring franchisee, Shawn Cox of SERVPRO of Bath/Brunswick, the two businessmen announced Jan. 13. The local SERVPRO team remains the same, and there are plans to add staff to the existing team.

Frysinger, a former engineer who established the franchise in Belfast 15 years ago, has decided to retire. “My family and I are looking forward to my retirement,” he said, “but I will always cherish the relationships my team and I created here with clients and the community at large.”

Reached by phone Jan. 14, Frysinger told us he was already enjoying spending more time with his family, and added that he plans to take some time to relax before deciding on other pursuits. One interest he mentioned was the Maine Indoor Air Council, of which he has been a member. He also said that when he was first starting the franchise, Cox gave him his introduction to what SERVPRO does before he received formal training.

Cox brings 24 years of SERVPRO ownership experience. “We have partnered with Bill and his team in the past on client projects here,” Cox said, “and extending our operations further into the Midcoast region makes good sense for our business and for clients accustomed to the level of service we both provide.”

Cox has named Darren Currier of his Bath/Brunswick team as operations manager of the Belfast/Camden/Rockland business.

Currier brings with him four years of past SERVPRO experience and dedication to customer service.

Cox said the ownership change should be transparent to clients. “Darren and I and the entire team look forward to working with current clients and the community, just as Bill did in the past,” Cox said.

SERVPRO of the Midcoast region serves most of Waldo and Knox counties.