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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Archived Blog Posts

Commercial Water Damage

5/15/2018 (Permalink)

Sprinkler systems can be a common source of water damage in commercial facilities. While their benefits far outweigh their cons, both properly and improperly working sprinkler systems can contribute to a flooded facility. In this case, a fire in an adjacent building caused the sprinkler system in this building to go off over the weekend. The sprinkler shut-off was eventually found but not until the damage had affected 36,000 sq ft of the facility. If this was your facility, what would you do?

Choose a Trained Professional

When your facility is affected, it is important to call a commercial drying specialist such as SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn.  At SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn, we understand that every hour closed leads to an hour lost of productivity and potential revenue. Commercial damage restoration produces unique challenges so it is very important to choose a trained professional with a proven track record. At SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn, we will respond immediately to your damage regardless of size or scope. When your facility is affected, no job is too big or too small. If your find yourself in this situation, call SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn at 781-935-8222. 

Commercial Mold Damage

5/11/2018 (Permalink)

Besides causing a major business interruption, a mold problem can present a serious health risk for people exposed at your commercial property. Mold infestations can be caused by minor water intrusions, like a slow roof leak or loose plumbing fitting. Mold can also grow as a result of improper drying when you have a water leak that was not properly dried.  Every hour spent cleaning up is an hour of lost revenue and productivity. If you suspect your property has a mold problem, call  SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn, who will respond quickly and work fast to manage the situation.

SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn is locally owned and operated, so we’re already close by and ready to respond immediately when you need us. We make disaster "Like it never even happened." Give us a call today at (781) 935-8222.

Flood Warnings What do they mean?

5/10/2018 (Permalink)

ately there has been flooding all over the United States: if you are unfamiliar with the difference between a flash flood warning, flood warning, and flood advisory; then read below! 

What is the difference between a Flood Watch and a Flood Warning issued by the National Weather Service?

  • Flash Flood Warning: Take Action! A Flash Flood Warning is issued when a flash flood is imminent or occurring. If you are in a flood prone area move immediately to high ground. A flash flood is a sudden violent flood that can take from minutes to hours to develop. It is even possible to experience a flash flood in areas not immediately receiving rain.

  • Flood Warning: Take Action! A Flood Warning is issued when the hazardous weather event is imminent or already happening. A Flood Warning is issued when flooding is imminent or occurring.

  • Flood Watch: Be Prepared:A Flood Watch is issued when conditions are favorable for a specific hazardous weather event to occur. A Flood Watch is issued when conditions are favorable for flooding. It does not mean flooding will occur, but it is possible.

  • Flood Advisory: Be Aware: An Flood Advisory is issued when a specific weather event that is forecast to occur may become a nuisance. A Flood Advisory is issued when flooding is not expected to be bad enough to issue a warning. However, it may cause significant inconvenience, and if caution is not exercised, it could lead to situations that may threaten life and/or property.

Information from http://www.floodsafety.noaa.gov/

When Storms or Floods hit the Area, SERVPRO is Ready!

5/10/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn 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're Highly Trained Storm Damage Specialists

As a leader in storm and water damage restoration, SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn has the specialized training and expertise to restore your home back to its pre-storm condition. Our restoration process puts an emphasis on scientific drying techniques, progress monitoring and documentation.

  • Water Damage Restoration Technician
  • Applied Structural Drying Technicians

Resources to Handle Floods and Storms

When storms hit the area, we can scale our resources to handle a large storm or flooding disaster. We can access equipment and personnel from a network of Franchises across the country and elite Disaster Recovery Teams that are strategically located throughout the United States.

Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today 781-935-8222

What is Lurking in Your Air Ducts?

5/9/2018 (Permalink)

Since the ventilation system is often the biggest culprit in poor indoor air quality, inspecting the ductwork should be a high priority.

In most cases, the HVAC system has been operating for some time without much attention. Dirt ducts can circulate odors, contaminants such as mold and irritating dust throughout your building or home. In some circumstances, such as after a fire, smoke or suspected mold growth, duct cleaning becomes an essential part of the cleanup process. 

Keeping the HVAC system and ductwork clean can potentially extend the life span of the equipment by allowing it to operate at peak condition, which may save you money. SERVPRO can often restore the HVAC system and ductwork to pre-damage conditions. 

  • We provide free written inspections and estimates
  • Eliminate offensive odors
  • Restore peak energy efficiency
  • Reduce potential for mold growth
  • Remediate bacteria, fungi and mold

Call us at 781-935-8222 to see how we can best improve your home or businesses air quality. We can make it "Like it never even happened."

Classes of Mold

5/8/2018 (Permalink)

Like we always say, mold is everywhere and not all molds are harmful to us! Molds are often found in wet, damp places and can vary in color and smell. Mold is put into different categories based on their hazard:

Hazard Class C: While this group of molds are not health hazards – they can cause structural damages, and are recommended to be removed.

Hazard Class B: These are molds that if endured over long periods of time can cause allergic reactions

Hazard Class A: These are the molds we want to identify and remove immediately! These molds create toxins and if not handle correctly the air quality of a structure with steadily decline.

If you feel like your home or business might be affected by mold, give us a call at 781-935-8222. While we cannot determine what type of mold it may be – we can remediate it with no worry!

Does Your Company Have an Evacuation Plan for Employees?

5/7/2018 (Permalink)

On their website, The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) provides important safety information as well as life saving tips for employers to share with their employees should it be necessary to evacuate a building in the event of an emergency. It is worth taking a look, you will be surprised at what you learn! Check it out.  https://www.osha.gov/SLTC/etools/evacuation/evac.html

     And although an emergency escape plan is not required for all businesses, OSHA highly recommends that you provide an emergency action plan to protect yourself, your employees, and your business space during an emergency situation. Here are some tips:

     A disorganized evacuation can result in confusion, injury, and property damage. When developing your emergency action plan, it is important to determine the following:

    • Conditions under which an evacuation would be necessary.
    • A clear chain of command and designation of the person in your business authorized to order an evacuation or shutdown.
    • Specific evacuation procedures, including routes and exits.
    • Specific evacuation procedures for high-rise buildings.





    • Procedures for assisting visitors and employees to evacuate, particularly those with disabilities or who do not speak English.
    • Designation of what, if any, employees will remain after the evacuation alarm to shut down critical operations or perform other duties before evacuating.
    • A means of accounting for employees after an evacuation.

    During development and implementation of your draft plan, think about all possible emergency situations and evaluate your workplace to see if it complies with OSHA's emergency standards.

    Emergencies don’t wait for regular business hours and neither do we. SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn provides emergency cleaning and restoration services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week—including all holidays. You can expect an immediate response time, day or night.

Need Emergency Service? Call Us 24/7 – (781) 935-8222

Protective Measures for Thunderstorms

5/6/2018 (Permalink)

Protective Measures for Thunderstorms

In the United States, an average of 300 people are injured and 80 people are killed each year by lightning. Although most lightning victims survive, people struck by lightning often report a variety of long-term, debilitating symptoms.

Before Thunderstorms and Lightning
To prepare for a thunderstorm, you should do the following:

  • Remove dead or rotting trees and branches that could fall and cause injury or damage during a severe thunderstorm.
  • Remember the 30/30 lightning safety rule: Go indoors if, after seeing lightning, you cannot count to 30 before hearing thunder. Stay indoors for 30 minutes after hearing the last clap of thunder.

The following are guidelines for what you should do if a thunderstorm is likely in your area:

  • Postpone outdoor activities.
  • Get inside a home, building, or hard top automobile (not a convertible). Although you may be injured if lightning strikes your car, you are much safer inside a vehicle than outside.
  • Remember, rubber-soled shoes and rubber tires provide NO protection from lightning. However, the steel frame of a hard-topped vehicle provides increased protection if you are not touching metal.
  • Secure outdoor objects that could blow away or cause damage.
  • Shutter windows and secure outside doors. If shutters are not available, close window blinds, shades, or curtains.
  • Avoid showering or bathing. Plumbing and bathroom fixtures can conduct electricity.
  • Use a corded telephone only for emergencies. Cordless and cellular telephones are safe to use.
  • Unplug appliances and other electrical items such as computers and turn off air conditioners. Power surges from lightning can cause serious damage.
  • Use your battery-operated NOAA Weather Radio for updates from local officials.

Avoid the following:

  • Natural lightning rods such as a tall, isolated tree in an open area
  • Hilltops, open fields, the beach, or a boat on the water
  • Isolated sheds or other small structures in open areas
  • Anything metal—tractors, farm equipment, motorcycles, golf carts, golf clubs, and bicycles

During a Thunderstorm if you are:

In a forest:  Seek shelter in a low area under a thick growth of small trees.

In an open area:  Go to a low place such as a ravine or valley.  Be alert for flash floods.

On open water: Get to land and find shelter immediately.  

Anywhere you feel your hair stand on end (which indicates that lightning is about to strike) squat low to the ground on the balls of your feet.  Place your hands over your ears and your head between your knees.  Make yourself the smallest target possible and minimize your contact to the ground.  DO NOT lie flat on the ground.

In the event you experience storm damage please contact your restoration specialists at SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn at 781-935-8222.

Mold Remediation Containment

5/1/2018 (Permalink)

This information was taken fromRestoration and Remediation, an online magazine. It is beneficial to share information with you regarding mold and why we use containment in the remediation process.

"The great mold warriors we meet and work with on a daily basis all have a common advantage- like the greatest generals in history, they know their enemy. More specifically these mold warriors know and understand that the greatest strength of their enemy is its invisibility.

Begin your battle by heeding the current Nobel Laureate for literature:  "The answer my friend, is blowing in the wind, the answer is blowing in the wind." [Of course that was an anti-war song…but let's not get too hung up in details…]

Since we know our enemy, we know it's greatest weakness - it cannot move on its own accord.  It is entirely dependent on air currents to power its invasion. Manage the skies, and you will win the war.

Erecting containment and generating and directing the air flow within that containment will enable us to win the air war, by controlling the enemy's movement. 

Where is the most strategic location of this containment?  It should be placed as close to the source of invasion as possible while still permitting us to gain access and accomplish our work.

One of the most common flaws in mold remediation projects is a containment structure that is larger than it needs to be:  Larger containments require more equipment for managing airflow, have more possible leak points, and require more time and effort to decontaminate prior to de-mobilisation. While erecting a containment, one must carefully balance the trade-offs between size and work access. 

To do so, one can rely on the knowledge of experienced mold warriors and follow the established principles." 

SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn can be your warrior when it comes to mold. To learn more, please call us at (781) 935-8222. We will help guide you through this process.

The Mold Remediation Process

5/1/2018 (Permalink)

This Burlington family discovered extensive microbial growth in their home, thanks to a leaking pipe that went undetected for months. Believe it or not, mold problems like this can be mitigated with the right expertise and equipment. SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn has trained technicians that were able to remove the mold growth, and then restore the space to preloss conditions. The family was very grateful that we were able to recover their home and protect them from any potential health effects. 

The Mold Remediation Process

Every mold infestation is different, from the extent and type of growth, to the variety of materials affected. Each scenario requires a unique solution, but the general process stays the same. When you discover mold, call us at 781-935-8222 and we will go through our standard mold remediation process: 

  • Inspection and Mold Damage Assessment
  • Mold Containment
  • Air Filtration
  • Removing Mold and Mold-Infested Materials
  • Cleaning Contents and Belongings
  • Restoration

If You See Signs of Mold, Call Us Today 781-935-8222

Unexpected Water Damage can be Frightening

5/1/2018 (Permalink)

Imagine it is 8:00 a.m. on a Tuesday, and you walk into your office after a relaxing long weekend expecting to switch on the lights, start the coffee pot, and check your emails.

The only problem? A water pipe has burst over the weekend, dumping thousands of gallons of water over your floor, down the walls, and affecting most of the furniture in the office. You realize this problem is far beyond the reach of your shop vac.  What do you do now?

When it's your home or business that's underwater, mitigation can't wait. You need mitigation to begin yesterday. If water damage strikes you or your customers, give SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn a call immediately.

The cost of water damages can increase exponentially with time.   Wood floors warp, dry wall soaks in moisture and mold develops in hard to reach areas of your home or business. The benefits of rapid mitigation by a SERVPRO® Technician are two-fold: Your costs go down as potential hazards may be avoided, and your peace of mind goes through the roof.

So if the unthinkable happens to your home or business, allow SERVPRO ofBurlington/ Woburn to help quickly turn your "before" into a "happily ever after." Call today at (781) 935-8222.

Facts About Flooding

5/1/2018 (Permalink)

Floods rank as one of the most common and widespread natural disasters in the United States. Whether you live near a coastline, along city streets, in the mountains, near a river or even in the desert, there is a potential for suffering from flood damage.

Just because you haven't experienced  a  flood  in  the past,  doesn’t  mean  you  won't  in  the future.  In fact, 20% of all claims paid by the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) were for policies in low-risk communities. On average, floods cost $3 billion in annual losses in the United States. Commercial flood claims average more than $75,000.

According to the American Red Cross (ARC), floods cause more damage in the U.S. every year than any other weather-related disaster.  The ARC offers the following flood safety tips.

  • Stay away from floodwaters. If you come up on a flowing stream where water is above your ankles, stop, run around and go another way Six inches of swiftly moving water can  sweep you  off of your feet.
  • If you approach  a flooded  road while driving, turn around and go another way. If you are caught on a flooded road  and waters are rising rapidly around  you,  get out of the car quickly and move to higher ground. Most cars can be swept away by less than two feet of moving water.
  • Keep children out of the water. They are curious and often lack judgment about run ning water or contaminated water. Keep your pets out of the water too.

If a flood does strike your home or business, contact SERVPRO® of Burlington/ Woburn. Even minor floods have the potential to cause major damage to a  structure when not treated quickly and properly, and the cleanup is often an overwhelming task. The SERVPRO® System is prepared to handle any sized disaster. The sooner work begins, the sooner order can be restored.

When fire and water take control of your life, SERVPRO® of Burlington/ Woburn will help you take it back.

What to do if you suffer from a Fire Loss

5/1/2018 (Permalink)

What Can Someone Do When They Experience a Fire Loss?

Getting life back to normal when someone’s home or business has been affected by fire damage is extremely stressful. An individual may experience emotional as well as financial hardship. Loss of valuables and family keepsakes may leave a person feeling helpless. Fire in their home or a fire in their business is a terrible site for an owner to encounter.

The property owner experiencing the fire loss may find it necessary to seek help from a professional fire cleanup company. The owner may not be able to enter the property when faced with a fire in their home or a fire in their business. The strong odors from smoke damage can be harmful to their health. 

What Types of Damages Can a Fire in a Home or a Fire in a Business Cause?

Coming up against a fire in the home may become an extremely difficult situation. Types of damages an owner can expect include soot damage, smoke damage, and the air quality in the home is affected. Overall a fire loss can be an upsetting -as well as costly- experience. 

Soot damage on rugs, upholstery, and curtains may be more costly to clean. In some cases, it may be easier to replace these items. Air quality may not improve until fire cleanup begins, and odors from smoke damage are removed. Fire damage to a home or business can seem like a nightmare.

Known Dangers of Commercial Fire Damage

All fires to any structure can be dangerous. A fire in a business can spread quickly to nearby areas. Commercial fire damage may involve dangerous gasses leaking and even explosives depending on the type of business in place. If not handled quickly a commercial fire damage can result in a long-term loss. Certain substances, like combustible metals often in industrial locations can emit undesirable chemicals making the air quality problematic. 

Dealing with the aftermath of a fire in the business property can also put a dent on the finances for an owner. Especially when they solely rely on income produced from their business. 

Not only can a commercial fire damage result in the destruction of items they have invested on, but also dealing with the repairs can be extremely costly. Heavy soot damage on clothing in retail shops, for instance, cannot be sold and is a complete loss to the owners. 

Certain types of commercial fire damage may be compensated by an insurance company to help owners recover from a fire loss, however, it will likely not happen as quickly as they would like. The same can be said for homeowners that need to recover from the effects of a fire in their home. Beginning the fire cleanup process is imperative to prevent further destruction from fire damage. 

What Does a Fire Cleanup Professional Do?

Fire cleanup professionals provide a variety of services to those that have experienced a fire loss. They have the equipment to clean areas affected by soot damage, and machines that improve air quality by eliminating pervasive odors due to smoke damage. Fire damage can go beyond what a home or business owner may see. 

Visual inspection can show the soot damage around the structure, and the odors from smoke damage will affect the air quality, and the odors can linger on. An important step taken by a fire damage restoration company is to inspect behind walls and under flooring for additional fire damage. Working with a trusted company can help owners get their life back in order.

SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn is here to help! For more information, please contact us at (781) 935-8222.

Flooded Basement? What type of water?

5/1/2018 (Permalink)

Early spring brings melting snow and heavy rains, all which could potentially pose a threat to flooding your basement.  We get a lot of questions on the types of water.  To help you understand what kind of water could potentially be in your basement there are (3) categories:

Category 1:  Known as "clean water" which is clean at the releasing source and does not pose a hazard if consumed by humans.  Most of the water that comes into your home will be Category 1 until it leaves its source, either a supply line, an appliance, or melting snow or rain.  The water in this category may become cotaminated as it mixes with soils on or within floor coverings, walls, subfloors, etc..  

Category 2:   Water that begins with some degree of contamination and could cause sickness or discomfort if consumed by humans.  Also know as "gray water"  is typically overflow water from an appliance, toilet, or aquarium.  

Category 3:Water which is highly contaminated and could cause death or serious illness if consumed by humans. Also know as "black water" examples are sewage, rising flood water from rivers and streams, ground surface water flowing horizontally into homes.

Best Practices for Dealing with Contaminated Water

5/1/2018 (Permalink)

Best Practices for Dealing with Contaminated Water

Do:

                Avoid all contact with sewage and items and contaminated by sewage.

                Wash your hands thoroughly after contact with contaminated items.

Don’t:

                Spread contaminated water by walking unnecessarily on damaged or wet areas.

                Turn on the HVAC system if there is a possibility of spreading contaminated air.

                Use household fans to dry the structure and spread contaminants.

                Use products for personal hygiene and cleanliness if exposed to the contaminated areas.

However if exposed to harmful waste, OSHA recommends a post-exposure medical evaluation.  Consult your local health department or physician.

When you are dealing with water damage, immediate action is crucial, contact SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn at 781-935-8222 Our response is immediate and we use advanced equipment and techniques to remove the water quickly.  We closely monitor and document the drying process to verify your property is dried properly and thoroughly. The main goal of SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn is to help minimize the interruption to your life and as quickly as possible make it "like it never even happened." 

Common Causes of Wildfires

5/1/2018 (Permalink)

A wildfire is the potentially deadly catalyst that starts as an uncontrolled fire in a large undeveloped and un-populated area. If the response to these fires is not timely they can quickly get out of control and end up destroying homes and agriculture and killing animals and human life in their path. As many as 90 percent of wildfires in the United States are caused by human carelessness or criminal intent. An unattended campfire, the burning of debris, negligently discarded cigarettes as well as intentional acts of arson are some of the ways that people cause tragedy. Wildfires can also be caused by an accumulation of dead matter (leaves, twigs, and trees) that create enough heat in some instances to spontaneously combust and ignite the surrounding area. Man-made combustion from arson, carelessness and lack of fire safety cause wildfire disasters every year. However, weather conditions contribute to the occurrence of wildfires as well. Lightning strikes or extended dry spells causing drought are weather related agitators. Lightning strikes the earth over 100,000 times a day and 10% to 20% of these lightning strikes can cause fire. An average of 1.2 million acres of US woodland burn every year. And sadly a large wildfire is even capable of modifying the local weather conditions and producing its own weather.

Summer is coming and many of us will be camping in the woods. We have known Smokey the Bear all our lives and have the responsibility to share his critical message with the next generation of campers. I love the commercial where Smokey comes out of the woods and gives a young camper a hug for carefully putting out his campfire. You can't help but smile. The message is stated subtly but is a good reminder of the detailed instructions Smokey has provided for years on how together we can prevent forest fires. As Smokey advises,keep campfires at a manageable size, allow wood to burn to ash completely, and pour a substantial amount of water on all embers until hissing sound stops. If you do not have water, stir up the dirt or sand into the embers with a shovel and bury the fire making absolutely sure no embers are exposed and still smoldering. One last word of caution from the Bear who knows,“If it’s too hot to touch, it’s too hot to leave.”

Mold Damage Emergency Tips

3/23/2018 (Permalink)

What you can do until help arrives

In as little as 48 hours, mold can quickly become a problem in your home or business when there’s a water intrusion, like a roof leak or leaking water line. Mold can cause health effects and can also cause significant damage to your property. SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn have the training, protective gear, and specialized equipment necessary to handle your mold problem.

Have a Mold Problem? Call Today 781-939-6990

If you have a mold problem in your home or business, your primary focus should be safety:

  • Significant mold growth can occur in 48-72 hours.
  • Mold may present a greater risk to children, the elderly, and anyone with respiratory problems.
  • A strong, musty odor may indicate hidden mold behind drywall or under carpeting.

What to Do:

  • Stay out of affected areas.
  • Turn off the HVAC system and fans.
  • Contact a SERVPRO Franchise Professional 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.

Sewage Cleanup and Restoration

3/23/2018 (Permalink)

Sewer backups should be considered an emergency since the water may contain viruses, bacteria, and other microbes that cause serious illnesses. SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn have specialized training and equipment to quickly and safely clean contaminants like sewage.

Toilet Overflow or Sewer Backup?
Call Today 781-939-6990

Water damage can be classified by the three types of contaminated water. SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn will inspect your home or business to determine the appropriate plan of action for the type of water encountered.

The three types of contaminated water:

Category 1: "Clean Water"

Category 1 water is from a clean source like a broken water supply line or leaking faucet. If not treated quickly, this water can turn into category 2 or 3, depending on length of time, temperature, and contact with surrounding contaminants.

  • Water from a clean source like a broken water line
  • If left untreated, can degrade into category 2 or 3

Category 2: "Gray Water"

Category 2 water is contaminated and could cause discomfort or illness. Examples include washing machine overflow; toilet overflow with some urine, but no feces; or dishwasher overflow.

  • May contain bacteria and viruses
  • Can quickly degrade into category 3 if left untreated

Category 3: "Black Water"

Category 3 water is grossly contaminated and could cause severe illness or death if ingested and any contact should be avoided. Examples include flooding from rivers or streams, water from beyond the toilet trap, water from the toilet bowl with feces, or standing water that has begun to support microbial growth.

  • May contain untreated sewage, harsh chemicals, and microbes
  • Water from flooding rivers or sewer backup

24 Hour Emergency Service

Water contaminated with sewage backup should be considered an emergency situation and dealt with as quickly as possible. SERVPRO of Burlington/Woburn are available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. They are water damage restoration specialists with specialized training, equipment and protective gear to safely restore your home or business.

Fire Damage Emergency Tips

3/23/2018 (Permalink)

What you can do until help arrives

After any fire damage situation, your primary focus should be safety:

  • Is it safe to stay in the house?
  • Electrical and "slip and fall" hazards are some of the most prevalent concerns.
  • Only do activities that are safe for you to perform.
  • Wet materials can be VERY heavy. Be careful!

Have A Fire or Smoke Damage Emergency? 
Call 781-939-6990

What To Do After A Fire

  • Limit movement in the home to prevent soot particles from being embedded into upholstery and carpets.
  • Keep hands clean so as not to further soil upholstery, walls and woodwork.
  • Place clean towels or old linens on rugs, upholstery and carpet traffic areas.
  • If electricity is off, empty freezer and refrigerator and prop doors open.
  • Clean and protect chrome with light coating of petroleum jelly or oil.
  • Wash houseplants on both sides of leaves.
  • Change HVAC filter.
  • Tape double layers of cheesecloth over air registers.

What NOT To Do After A Fire

  • Don't attempt to wash any walls or painted surfaces or shampoo carpet or upholstery without contacting your SERVPRO Franchise Professional.
  • Don't attempt to clean any electrical appliances that may have been close to fire, heat or water without consulting an authorized repair service.
  • Don't use any canned or packaged food or beverages that may have been stored near the fire, heat or water.
  • Don't turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet. The wiring may be damaged.
  • Don't send garments to an ordinary dry cleaner. Improper cleaning may set smoke odor.

Flooded Basement Tips

3/1/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Flooded Basement Tips Flooded Basement

Avoid a flooded basement, this year and forever!

Normal spring thaws can cause a small trickle to become a bigger issue. Foundation cracks that weren’t a problem before have the potential to become a huge problem now.

This year’s sudden spring thaw could exacerbate any issues that were not taken care of in the past.

In late winter and early spring, the ground can’t absorb all of the rain and snow melt, so it flows along the foundation. A proper drain system, sump pump and sealed cracks will help you avoid problems this spring.

Here are a few simple tips:

  • Keep your gutters clean (this will keep rain water from flowing directly to your foundation)
  • Grade landscaping away from foundation (add mulch or soil at an angle, higher at the foundation, slanting away)
  • Check your sump pump or purchase a submersible pump and fans

Move valuables and expensive items you may have in your basement, or use pallets and shelves to keep them elevated.

When there is a natural disaster, often the emergency items you need are sold out, so plan ahead.

If you do have a flood

There are still things you can do to mitigate the damage.

  • If you can do it safely, turn off the electricity.

But don’t get electrocuted! If you can reach the breaker without standing in water turn it off.  

  • If you’ve got just a bit of water in spots consider yourself lucky. If you can clean it up with a wet vac and have fans to dry it afterward you might be all set.
  • If your basement has flooded more than an inch, it’s best to call us.

If you have a sump pump and fans, you may still wish to tackle the job by yourself.  Submersible water pumps work best when you place them in the deepest part of the flooded water. If dirt and debris builds up and clogs the screen around the pump, clean it out and consider using something like a small tool to prop it up a bit. This will increase the space for water to flow through the pump. Use the widest and shortest hose possible, this will enable the pump to work faster.

When all the water is up and it appears dry you may still want us simply to treat the previously flooded area in order to kill any mold before it’s an issue.

To avoid this problem next year you must identify where the water came in.

  • First, seal the cracks
  • Then, dig to avert water flow next time

Remember water will travel down the path of least resistance. It is strongly advised to dig outside near the foundation and repack the soil. Dig down to where the water came, and then dig out and to the sides a few feet. There is a channel that you may not see but you will disturb and avert if you do this. Next year, water will not flow in that same direction if done correctly.

Last but not least, our friends at Signature Page Real Estate in Woburn, suggest having a dehumidifier in any basement, old or new.

Recap:

  • Clean your gutters
  • Have a sump pump, wet vac and fans
  • Fix lawn grading
  • Seal the cracks
  • Dig to avert water flow next year
  • Have a dehumidifier

If water comes in and it’s too much to tackle yourself, call us. Mitigating water damage is one of our core competencies. We’ll tackle the job at hand, and be sure your water problem doesn’t become a mold problem later: Like it never even happened.

Pipe Freeze Tips

12/4/2017 (Permalink)

Water Damage Pipe Freeze Tips Pipe Freeze

When temperatures get below 20 degrees you should flush your toilets and run hot water through your pipes every 4 hours. When it’s extremely cold let cold water slowly drip from faucets served by exposed pipes and pipes particularly close to the foundation.

The lines going to your toilets are more susceptible because they have only cold water running through them. The lower the temperature the more crucial it is to flush toilets regularly. If the toilet sounds irregular or makes a crackling sound while filling up the tank or tank and bowl, or is slow to fill, you have a problem. It’s important to remedy it quickly.

Identify the line in the basement. You can often pin point exactly where it’s frozen because it will be colder to the touch.

Set up a space heater and aim it directly at the frozen area of the line for at least an hour, or until tank and bowl fills at the normal rate. With old style heaters, be careful of a potential fire hazard. Give the space heater space. Do not have flammable materials within several feet of the heater and be certain it’s standing or balanced securely.

Check for drafts. You may find a draft that is aimed directly at the line. These lines are often very close to the foundation. You can identify the draft by simply using your hand or a candle.

Cover up the drafty area. This can be a quick fix by adhering plastic or even a towel over the draft, or you could use caulk or spackle from the inside. Just stop that draft from aiming at your pipe. Suring up drafty areas from the outside and inside is ideal, but at least tackle the problem from the inside for now.

If it’s too late and your pipe has burst, shut off the main water supply, crank up the heat and call a plumber. We’re here if you need us for clean up afterward. We’ll clean up all water, leave fans and dehumidifiers behind until it’s thoroughly dry and be sure your water problem doesn’t turn into a mold problem.

We are a Certified IICRC Firm

11/16/2017 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn is an IICRC firm. The Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) creates the standards for the restoration industry and provides training and certification to restoration companies. IICRC Certified Firms have the right to display the IICRC Certified Logo.

IICRC Certified Firms must

  • Present accurate information to consumers and conduct business with honesty and integrity.
  • Require a technician on all jobs who has been formally trained and passed all required tests.
  • Require a continuing education program to keep technicians up-to-date on the latest changes in the industry.
  • Maintain liability insurance to protect all parties in the event of an accident.
  • Maintain a written complaint policy and agree to Better Business Bureau or similar arbitration to resolve disputes, and accept the conclusions and recommendations of arbitration.

The IICRC Develops The Standards For The Restoration Industry

The IICRC has been the driving force in establishing the main industry standards and reference guides for professional carpet cleaning, water damage restoration and mold remediation. These IICRC standards take years to develop and require the coordination of experts in the field: manufacturers, industry organizations, insurance professionals, training schools, contractors, and public health professionals.

Every five years, the standards are reviewed and updated. The water damage restoration field changes rapidly with advancements in technology and science, and therefore the standards must evolve to keep pace.

About SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn

SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn 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 and we are an IICRC Certified Firm. We believe in continuous training: 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.

SERVPRO Here to Help

11/16/2017 (Permalink)

Flooding and water damage events at Burlington, Woburn, Wilmington & Winchester commercial properties are often complex with numerous issues that require a knowledgeable and flexible response. Whether we’re dealing with a relatively small water cleanup scenario or a large scale event, we work quickly to assess each unique situation and isolate the damaged area. In many instances, normal operations can continue in a temporary space while we restore your facility.

Restoring Commercial Properties Presents Unique Challenges

Our professionals are trained to be mindful of legal and environmental concerns and strive to fully restore the damaged area while working within your budgetary constraints. We understand that every hour spent cleaning up is an hour of lost revenue and productivity. So when an emergency situation arises in your business, give us a call and we’ll be there fast with the help you need.

About SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn

SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn specializes in the cleanup and restoration of commercial and residential property after a damaging 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.

Emergency Fire Tips for Homeowners and Business Owners

11/16/2017 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Emergency Fire Tips for Homeowners and Business Owners SERVPRO® of Burlington/ Woburn will work neatly and efficiently to help you regain control of your property when a damaging event has taken over

The first 48 hours after fire damage can make the difference between restoring versus replacing your property and personal belongings. SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn can help prevent fire damage from creating long-term problems. We provide timely response with mitigation services ranging from fire, smoke and soot removal to contents claims inventory and document restoration. These services help ensure your property, belongings and memories are restored to preloss condition when possible.

  • Limit movement to prevent further damage
  • Place clean towels or old linens on carpeted traffic areas to prevent more soiling
  • If electricity is off, empty freezer and refrigerator and prop doors open
  • Clean and protect chrome on kitchen and bathroom faucets and appliances with light coating of petroleum jelly
  • Don’t attempt to wash any walls or painted surfaces without first contacting SERVPRO®
  • Don’t attempt to shampoo carpet or upholstered furniture without first consulting SERVPRO®
  • Don’t attempt to clean any electrical appliances that may have been close to fire or water damage without consulting a repair service.
  • Place aluminum foil or wood blocks between furniture legs and wet carpet
  • Do not send clothing to a dry cleaner since improper cleaning may set smoke odor.

So before you risk doing further damage by attempting to clean up the damage yourself, call the fire damage cleanup and restoration professionals at (781) 935-8222. SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn has worked for over 40 years to help make fire damage “Like it never even happened."

When Mold Invades Your Home or Business

11/16/2017 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation When Mold Invades Your Home or Business When mold invades your home, make sure you know who to call

Microscopic mold spores naturally occur almost everywhere, both outdoors and indoors. This makes it impossible to remove all mold from a home or business. Therefore, mold remediation reduces the mold spore count back to its natural or baseline level. Some restoration businesses advertise “mold removal” and even guarantee to remove all mold, which is a fallacy. Consider the following mold facts:

  • Mold is present almost everywhere, indoors and outdoors.
  • Mold spores are microscopic and float along in the air and may enter your home through windows, doors, or AC/heating systems or even hitch a ride indoors on your clothing or a pet.
  • Mold spores thrive on moisture. Mold spores can quickly grow into colonies when exposed to water. These colonies may produce allergens and irritants.
  • Before mold remediation can begin, any sources of water or moisture must be addressed. Otherwise, the mold may return.
  • Mold often produces a strong, musty odor and can lead you to possible mold problem areas.
  • Even higher-than-normal indoor humidity can support mold growth. Keep indoor humidity below 45 percent.

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 or Smell Signs of Mold, Call Us Today – (781) 935-8222. 

When You See Mold, Call Us Today

11/16/2017 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation When You See Mold, Call Us Today Mold Can Spread and Multiply Faster than You Realize

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 Burlington/ Woburn 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 Burlington/ Woburn 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 – 781-935-8222

Surprise Snow Storms Tips for Your Home!

11/16/2017 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Surprise Snow Storms Tips for Your Home! When it comes to life’s emergencies, it isn't a matter of if they will occur, it's a matter of when they will occur

The potential for surprise snow storms as Winter approaches can be very real. They can also be beautiful to see as the snow sticks to trees. But they can be dangerous to your home and office. In order to stay safe, SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn wants you to please follow these and other safety tips for your home.

Before the Storm



Have an emergency supply kit on hand

Develop a communication plan with all members of your family



After the Storm               



If wires come down due to the weight of the snow, do not touch them

Do not drive on roads that haven't been cleared



Keep you and your family safe through a storm. When in doubt, stay away from anything that may look suspicious or anything that may be break due to the weight of the snow. 

If the snow starts melting and it comes into your home, SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn is here to help! We can remove any affected materials and dry out the structure. For more information, please visit us at www.SERVPROofburlingtonwoburn.com or call (781)-935-8222

Choosing the Right Roof For Your Home

11/16/2017 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Choosing the Right Roof For Your Home Knowing the damage that can occur in your region will help determine the type of roof that belongs on your home.

The right roof for your home can not only look good, but always can protect your home during a storm. Here, we share a blog from Budget Dumpster on how to pick the right roof for you.

Types of Roof Shingles

Asphalt

Of all the different types of shingles, these are the most commonly used because they’re the least expensive and relatively easy to install. These shingles are made of fiberglass mats coated with asphalt containing sand-like granules.

The downside: Asphalt shingles have a relatively short life span of 20 to 30 years, and they don’t fare well in areas where the temperature fluctuates unexpectedly, such as the Midwest.

Why choose asphalt roofing shingles? They’re the most economical of roofing options and come in plenty of styles and color selections.

Metal

This type of roof is made with many different materials – aluminum, steel, copper, zinc and titanium. If properly maintained, your metal roof could last as long as 50 years. You may want to consider metal if your home’s roofline is flat or steep.

The downside: Metal roofing can become noisy whenever it’s hailing or raining.

Why choose metal roofing shingles? They’re durable, fireproof and good at shedding snow and ice.

Slate

Not only are slate shingles durable – lasting anywhere from 80 to 100 years – they are also highly resistant to water and physical damage.

The downside: In addition to their high price tag, slate is expensive to repair because very few roofing companies specialize in this particular type of shingle. Furthermore, slate is rather heavy and may not be a good fit if your home can’t handle the weight.

Why choose slate roofing shingles? They’re one of the longest-lasting types of roofing material you can choose, and on the right style of home, adds a nice visual appeal.

Wood

Aside from being durable and having a lifespan of 30 to 50 years, wood shingles are more environmentally friendly than other types. This type of roof shingle is usually made of cedar, but can also be made of other rot-resistant woods, such as redwood.

The downside: Although energy-efficient and long-lasting, wood shingles are less fire-resistant than other types. They’re also more susceptible to termites and mold.

Why choose wood roofing shingles? They’re visually appealing and generally cooler than other types of shingles that are darker in color.

For more information on your roof or Budget Dumpster, please visit their blog.

If your roof doesn't hold up in a storm and you are a victim of water damage, please call us at 781-935-8222, to make it "Like it never even happened."

24 Hour Emergency Water Damage Service

11/10/2017 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn is available 24 hours a day for water emergencies, large or small. When you are dealing with water damage, immediate action is crucial. A delay of just a few hours can greatly increase the severity of the water damage.

We Answer the Phone Ready to Help
Call Today - 781-935-8222

We understand that when you call us, you may be feeling confused, stressed, and vulnerable. You need an expert to guide you through this crisis. SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn has the specific water damage training and experience to help you through this tough time. We specialize in water damage restoration—in fact, it's the cornerstone of our business.

What to Expect

When you call, we will ask several questions regarding your water damage emergency. These questions will help us determine what equipment and resources to bring, including how many trained SERVPRO Professionals may be needed.

Our SERVPRO Representative will ask several questions:

  • Your name and contact information
  • Your insurance information (if applicable)
  • The street address of the water-damaged home or business
  • When did the flooding or water damage occur?
  • What caused the water damage (if known)?
  • Is there electricity available (on-site)?

About SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn

SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn 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.

Fire Damage - Emergency Ready Profile

9/29/2017 (Permalink)

A fire in your home or business is nothing you ever planned on.  But it is something you can plan for by calling on the fire and water, cleanup and restoration specialist at SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn at 781-935-8222. That’s where you’ll find a team of professionals who are committed to helping you develop a plan to make sure you’re ready for whatever happens.   With an Emergency Ready Profile from SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn you’ll take confidence in knowing that when the things that matter most are on the line they will be too because you can’t keep fire damage from taking control of your home or business.  But with an Emergency Ready Profile, you can make sure it doesn’t take control of your life.  So before fire or water damage strikes, make sure you’re ready for whatever happens with SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn at 781-935-8222.  Helping make fire and water damage “Like it never even happened”.

Homeowners Insurance

9/28/2017 (Permalink)

What homeowners in New England need to know!

Don’t make the mistake of assuming that you and your house or condo is adequately covered. If you’re anything like the average American, you likely have less homeowners (or condo) insurance than you need to weather the storm.

According to the non-profit advocacy organization, United Policyholders, about two-thirds of U.S. homeowners would be underinsured if they were to find themselves on the wrong end of some sort of adverse weather event.

Northeast

Do you own property in New England? If so, the biggest threats—from a weather or natural disaster standpoint are floods, snow/cold temperatures, and strong winds.

If you reside in a Northeastern you will want to make sure your homeowners insurance provides for you if your home becomes a casualty of flood, snow, or wind damage. Below is a bit more about each.

Floods

Homeowners insurance usually doesn’t cover damage caused by flooding. Many Americans wrongly believe their basic home policy protects them from flood damage.

Floods are the most common of all the natural disasters in the U.S., so that could be a problem for homeowners who live in flood-prone regions.

If you reside in a high-risk area, and you obtained your mortgage from a federally regulated or insured lender, you’ll be required to buy flood insurance through the National Flood Insurance Program. (If you live in a moderate- or low-risk area, the government won’t force you to purchase it. Still, you can do so if your community participates in the NFIP.)

Snow

If a large amount of snow is dumped onto your roof, it very well could cause it to collapse if it doesn’t melt or isn’t removed fairly quickly.

Luckily, even if all you have is a barebones homeowners policy, you should be well protected from an insurance perspective when you go to pay for any related repairs.

Your bank account also should be safe if you’re hit by a blizzard and the strong winds that often are associated with it somehow damages your house or surrounding property. (Ripping shingles from your roof or toppling a tree that destroys your garage are two examples.)

What are some wintry situations that could prompt you to have to pay for home repairs or replacements out of your own pocket if you haven’t invested in extra endorsements or stand-alone policies? One possibility is if your pipes burst because you failed to keep your house warm enough. Another is if your basement (or some other part of your dwelling) floods after all of the snow that’s currently blanketing your lawn inevitably melts.

In the latter instance, an actual flood insurance policy—again, purchased through the NFIP—is going to be the only thing (outside of your own hard-earned cash) that will come to your rescue, so if that’s a real concern for you, you should consider going that route as soon as possible.

Cold Temperatures

When the temperature drops below the freezing point, and especially when it dips below zero degrees, it can cause pipes to burst.

High Winds

This region rarely has to deal with hurricanes but it’s no stranger to strong winds—up to 60 miles per hour, especially during the winter months. These winds can cause significant damage to dwellings and property.

The question is, is the damage produced by these winds protected by your standard homeowners policy? For the most part, it is-under the broad “windstorm peril” section of your plan, according to “If Disaster Strikes, Will You Be Covered?”

Specifically, if strong winds blow off part (or all) of your roof, or knock down a fence, or drop a tree onto your house, most of the resulting repair and replacement costs will be covered—to some extent, of course—by that form of insurance.

There are some exceptions to this rule. For example, if a particularly harsh wind storm fells one of the trees in your yard and it doesn’t damage your home or other structures in any way, you’ll have to pay to have it and any related debris removed from your property.

The above segments were adapted from the writings of Bryan Ochalla and www.upheld.org, a resource for US policy holders.

SERVPRO of Burlington/Woburn reminds you to double check your policy to be sure you’re covered. Let us know how we can help. Enjoy this beautiful time of year and stay safe.

Water Damage

9/28/2017 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn is available 24 hours a day for water emergencies, large or small. When you are dealing with water damage, immediate action is crucial. A delay of just a few hours can greatly increase the severity of the water damage.

We Answer the Phone Ready to Help
Call Today - 781-935-8222

We understand that when you call us, you may be feeling confused, stressed, and vulnerable. You need an expert to guide you through this crisis. SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn has the specific water damage training and experience to help you through this tough time. We specialize in water damage restoration—in fact, it's the cornerstone of our business.

What to Expect

When you call, we will ask several questions regarding your water damage emergency. These questions will help us determine what equipment and resources to bring, including how many trained SERVPRO Professionals may be needed.

Our SERVPRO Representative will ask several questions:

  • Your name and contact information
  • Your insurance information (if applicable)
  • The street address of the water-damaged home or business
  • When did the flooding or water damage occur?
  • What caused the water damage (if known)?
  • Is there electricity available (on-site)?

About SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn

SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn 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.

Fire Prevention Week

9/28/2017 (Permalink)

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) holds their Fire Prevention Week activities in October; this year it’s October 8th-14th.

SERVPRO is proud to announce our sponsorship and participation during this time. Our local fire fighters visit children at school and hold open houses. The kids enjoy these visits and learn the basics of fire prevention.

SERVPRO has provided fire safety coloring books and crayons to the communities of North Reading, Wilmington, Winchester and Stoneham. The fire fighters will distribute these gifts during their visits. It’s a fun way to support our local fire fighters and give back to the community.

In winter, we see an increased risk for household fires. Below are four of the top six causes of fires. Notice the presence of danger increases in winter, due to an increase of usage in these categories:

In the spirit of fire prevention, we’d like to remind you to:

  • Replace smoke detector batteries.
  • Replace smoke alarms every 10 years.
  • Have an escape plan and meeting place.
  • Space heaters need adequate space around them. Don’t place objects to close.
  • Thoroughly clean your dryer of lint.
  • Never use a candle if an oxygen tank is used in the home.

Smoke Alarms

9/28/2017 (Permalink)

Smoke alarms save lives. Smoke alarms that are properly installed and maintained play a vital role in reducing fire deaths and injuries. If there is a fire in your home, smoke spreads fast and you need smoke alarms to give you time to get out. 

Here's what you need to know!
  • A closed door may slow the spread of smoke, heat and fire. Install smoke alarms in every sleeping room and outside each separate sleeping area. Install alarms on every level of the home. 
  • Smoke alarms should be interconnected. When one sounds, they all sound. 
  • Large homes may need extra smoke alarms.
  • Test your smoke alarms at least once a month. Press the test button to be sure the alarm is working.
  • There are two kinds of alarms. Ionization smoke alarms are quicker to warn about flaming fires. Photoelectric alarms are quicker to warn about smoldering fires. It is best to use of both types of alarms in the home.
  • When a smoke alarm sounds, get outside and stay outside.
  • Replace all smoke alarms in your home every 10 years.
  • More about installation and maintenance of home smoke alarms.

Fire Damage in Home

9/11/2017 (Permalink)

Here at SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn we understand how badly some fires can affect our customers. Not only do they do damage to the homes and businesses to so many individuals but they also cause a tremendous amount of stress.  We are here to alleviate that stress and restore your home back to the way it once was prior to damage.  This job classifies as fire damage as you can see the amount of debris on the floor when looking at the picture. Our crew went in with the proper tools to get rid of all the garbage and debris the fire left behind to make this house look like a home again. Our customer was very happy with the level of professionalism we provided. It’s easy to get worked up when something like this happens to you but don’t worry SERVPRO is #heretohelp.

Emergency Fire Tips for Homeowners and Business Owners

9/8/2017 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Emergency Fire Tips for Homeowners and Business Owners SERVPRO® of Burlington/ Woburn will work neatly and efficiently to help you regain control of your property when a damaging event has taken over.

The first 48 hours after fire damage can make the difference between restoring versus replacing your property and personal belongings. SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn can help prevent fire damage from creating long-term problems. We provide timely response with mitigation services ranging from fire, smoke and soot removal to contents claims inventory and document restoration. These services help ensure your property, belongings and memories are restored to preloss condition when possible.

  • Limit movement to prevent further damage
  • Place clean towels or old linens on carpeted traffic areas to prevent more soiling
  • If electricity is off, empty freezer and refrigerator and prop doors open
  • Clean and protect chrome on kitchen and bathroom faucets and appliances with light coating of petroleum jelly
  • Don’t attempt to wash any walls or painted surfaces without first contacting SERVPRO®
  • Don’t attempt to shampoo carpet or upholstered furniture without first consulting SERVPRO®
  • Don’t attempt to clean any electrical appliances that may have been close to fire or water damage without consulting a repair service.
  • Place aluminum foil or wood blocks between furniture legs and wet carpet
  • Do not send clothing to a dry cleaner since improper cleaning may set smoke odor.

So before you risk doing further damage by attempting to clean up the damage yourself, call the fire damage cleanup and restoration professionals at (781) 935-8222. SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn has worked for over 40 years to help make fire damage “Like it never even happened.”

5 Wildfire Safety Tips

9/8/2017 (Permalink)

Fire Damage 5 Wildfire Safety Tips Wildfires can occur at any time throughout the year, but the potential is always higher during periods with little or no rainfall.

A wildfire can occur anywhere-in fact, in 2014, wildfire occurrences were  recorded in all 50 states. What is a wildfire? It is an unplanned, unwanted fire burning in a natural area, such as a forest, grassland, or prairie. A wildfire can destroy homes, businesses, agriculture, and damage natural resources while threatening the safety of the public and the firefighters who protect our forests and communities.  Wildfires can occur at any time throughout the year, but the potential is always higher during periods with little or no rainfall, which make brush, grass, and trees dry and burn more easily. High winds can also contribute to spreading the fire.

If you live or work in an area prone to wildfires, consider the following safety tips to help prevent the spread of wildfire.

Wildfire Safety Tips

  • Clear leaves and other debris from gutters, eaves, porches and decks. Remove dead  vegetation from under your deck and within 10  feet  of the  house.  This  prevents  embers from igniting your home.
  • Remove anything stored underneath decks or porches. Screen or box-in areas below patios and decks with wire mesh to  prevent debris from accumulating.
  • Ensure flammable materials (firewood stacks, propane tanks, dry vegetation) are more than 30 feet from your home or business's foundation and outbuildings.
  • Wildfire can spread to tree tops. If you have trees on your property, prune so the lowest branches are 6 to 10 feet from the ground.
  • Keep your lawn hydrated and maintained. If it is brown, cut it down to reduce fire intensity. Dry grass and shrubs are fuel for wildfire.

How To Prevent Attic Fires

9/8/2017 (Permalink)

Fire Damage How To Prevent Attic Fires Attic Fires

Did you know that more than 40% of attic fires are the result of electrical malfunctions?

So how do we help prevent an attic fire? Here are three things firefighters suggest you hire have a professional to do:

    1. Have your chimney inspected by a professional who will check the interior and exterior of the chimney, including the part running through the attic
    1. Check the wiring in your attic, preferably by an electrician, looking for signs of damage, cracked insulation (wire sheathing), and exposed or disconnected wires
    1. Look for signs of burning and charring in the insulation and wood

A common mistake is that everybody typically plugs in their space heaters to help supplement their heat. And then, they'll put them on a long extension cord so that they are able to reach areas with less heat. So, the longer the extension cord is, the more ampage it will draw on the circuit.

Another common fire hazard is that homeowners choose voltage incandescent light bulbs in ceiling fixtures that is a higher voltage than required is also afire hazard. That heat that is trapped within the light fixture goes straight up into the attic and in the wires and essentially cook the wires, starting a fire.

Flood Warnings What to they mean?

5/12/2017 (Permalink)

Lately there has been flooding all over the United States: if you are unfamiliar with the difference between a flash flood warning, flood warning, and flood advisory; then read below! 

 

What is the difference between a Flood Watch and a Flood Warning issued by the National Weather Service?

  • Flash Flood Warning: Take Action! A Flash Flood Warning is issued when a flash flood is imminent or occurring. If you are in a flood prone area move immediately to high ground. A flash flood is a sudden violent flood that can take from minutes to hours to develop. It is even possible to experience a flash flood in areas not immediately receiving rain.

  • Flood Warning: Take Action! A Flood Warning is issued when the hazardous weather event is imminent or already happening. A Flood Warning is issued when flooding is imminent or occurring.

  • Flood Watch: Be Prepared:A Flood Watch is issued when conditions are favorable for a specific hazardous weather event to occur. A Flood Watch is issued when conditions are favorable for flooding. It does not mean flooding will occur, but it is possible.

  • Flood Advisory: Be Aware: An Flood Advisory is issued when a specific weather event that is forecast to occur may become a nuisance. A Flood Advisory is issued when flooding is not expected to be bad enough to issue a warning. However, it may cause significant inconvenience, and if caution is not exercised, it could lead to situations that may threaten life and/or property.

Information from http://www.floodsafety.noaa.gov/

When Storms or Floods hit the Area, SERVPRO is Ready!

5/12/2017 (Permalink)

Storm Damage When Storms or Floods hit the Area, SERVPRO is Ready! SERVPRO of Burlington/ Wakefield is here to HELP!

SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn 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're Highly Trained Storm Damage Specialists


As a leader in storm and water damage restoration, SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn has the specialized training and expertise to restore your home back to its pre-storm condition. Our restoration process puts an emphasis on scientific drying techniques, progress monitoring and documentation.



  • Water Damage Restoration Technician

  • Applied Structural Drying Technicians


Resources to Handle Floods and Storms


When storms hit the area, we can scale our resources to handle a large storm or flooding disaster. We can access equipment and personnel from a network of Franchises across the country and elite Disaster Recovery Teams that are strategically located throughout the United States.


Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today 781-935-8222

Commercial Water Damage

5/12/2017 (Permalink)

Sprinkler systems can be a common source of water damage in commercial facilities. While their benefits far outweigh their cons, both properly and improperly working sprinkler systems can contribute to a flooded facility. In this case, a fire in an adjacent building caused the sprinkler system in this building to go off over the weekend. The sprinkler shut-off was eventually found but not until the damage had affected 36,000 sq ft of the facility. If this was your facility, what would you do?

Choose a Trained Professional

When your facility is affected, it is important to call a commercial drying specialist such as SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn.  At SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn, we understand that every hour closed leads to an hour lost of productivity and potential revenue. Commercial damage restoration produces unique challenges so it is very important to choose a trained professional with a proven track record. At SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn, we will respond immediately to your damage regardless of size or scope. When your facility is affected, no job is too big or too small. If your find yourself in this situation, call SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn at 781-935-8222.

Commercial Mold Damage

5/12/2017 (Permalink)

Commercial Commercial Mold Damage GOT MOLD?

Besides causing a major business interruption, a mold problem can present a serious health risk for people exposed at your commercial property. Mold infestations can be caused by minor water intrusions, like a slow roof leak or loose plumbing fitting. Mold can also grow as a result of improper drying when you have a water leak that was not properly dried.  Every hour spent cleaning up is an hour of lost revenue and productivity. If you suspect your property has a mold problem, call  SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn, who will respond quickly and work fast to manage the situation.


SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn is locally owned and operated, so we’re already close by and ready to respond immediately when you need us. We make disaster "Like it never even happened." Give us a call today at (781) 935-8222.

Our Standard Process for Mold

5/11/2017 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation Our Standard Process for Mold Believe it or not, mold problems like this can be mitigated with the right expertise and equipment.

This Burlington family discovered extensive microbial growth in their home, thanks to a leaking pipe that went undetected for months. Believe it or not, mold problems like this can be mitigated with the right expertise and equipment. SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn has trained technicians that were able to remove the mold growth, and then restore the space to preloss conditions. The family was very grateful that we were able to recover their home and protect them from any potential health effects. 

The Mold Remediation Process

Every mold infestation is different, from the extent and type of growth, to the variety of materials affected. Each scenario requires a unique solution, but the general process stays the same. When you discover mold, call us at 781-935-8222 and we will go through our standard mold remediation process: 

  • Inspection and Mold Damage Assessment
  • Mold Containment
  • Air Filtration
  • Removing Mold and Mold-Infested Materials
  • Cleaning Contents and Belongings
  • Restoration

If You See Signs of Mold, Call Us Today 781-935-8222

Containment During a Mold Remediation: How Important is It?

5/11/2017 (Permalink)

This information was taken fromRestoration and Remediation, an online magazine. It is beneficial to share information with you regarding mold and why we use containment in the remediation process.

"The great mold warriors we meet and work with on a daily basis all have a common advantage- like the greatest generals in history, they know their enemy. More specifically these mold warriors know and understand that the greatest strength of their enemy is its invisibility.

Begin your battle by heeding the current Nobel Laureate for literature:  "The answer my friend, is blowing in the wind, the answer is blowing in the wind." [Of course that was an anti-war song…but let's not get too hung up in details…]

Since we know our enemy, we know it's greatest weakness - it cannot move on its own accord.  It is entirely dependent on air currents to power its invasion. Manage the skies, and you will win the war.

Erecting containment and generating and directing the air flow within that containment will enable us to win the air war, by controlling the enemy's movement. 

Where is the most strategic location of this containment?  It should be placed as close to the source of invasion as possible while still permitting us to gain access and accomplish our work.

One of the most common flaws in mold remediation projects is a containment structure that is larger than it needs to be:  Larger containments require more equipment for managing airflow, have more possible leak points, and require more time and effort to decontaminate prior to de-mobilisation. While erecting a containment, one must carefully balance the trade-offs between size and work access. 

To do so, one can rely on the knowledge of experienced mold warriors and follow the established principles." 

SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn can be your warrior when it comes to mold. To learn more, please call us at (781) 935-8222. We will help guide you through this process.

Unexpected Water Damage in Your Wilmington Home or Business Can Be Frightening

5/11/2017 (Permalink)

Commercial Unexpected Water Damage in Your Wilmington Home or Business Can Be Frightening A water pipe has burst over the weekend, dumping thousands of gallons of water over your floor and affecting most of the furniture.

Imagine it is 8:00 a.m. on a Tuesday, and you walk into your office after a relaxing long weekend expecting to switch on the lights, start the coffee pot, and check your emails.

 

The only problem? A water pipe has burst over the weekend, dumping thousands of gallons of water over your floor, down the walls, and affecting most of the furniture in the office. You realize this problem is far beyond the reach of your shop vac.  What do you do now?

 

When it's your home or business that's underwater, mitigation can't wait. You need mitigation to begin yesterday. If water damage strikes you or your customers, give SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn a call immediately.

 

The cost of water damages can increase exponentially with time.   Wood floors warp, dry wall soaks in moisture and mold develops in hard to reach areas of your home or business. The benefits of rapid mitigation by a SERVPRO® Technician are two-fold: Your costs go down as potential hazards may be avoided, and your peace of mind goes through the roof.

 

So if the unthinkable happens to your home or business, allow SERVPRO ofBurlington/ Woburn to help quickly turn your "before" into a "happily ever after." Call today at (781) 935-8222.

Facts About Flooding in Your Woburn Area

5/11/2017 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Facts About Flooding in Your Woburn Area Even minor floods have the potential to cause major damage to a structure when not treated quickly and properly, and the cleanup is often overwhelming

Floods rank as one of the most common and widespread natural disasters in the United States. Whether you live near a coastline, along city streets, in the mountains, near a river or even in the desert, there is a potential for suffering from flood damage.

Just because you haven't experienced  a  flood  in  the past,  doesn’t  mean  you  won't  in  the future.  In fact, 20% of all claims paid by the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) were for policies in low-risk communities. On average, floods cost $3 billion in annual losses in the United States. Commercial flood claims average more than $75,000.

According to the American Red Cross (ARC), floods cause more damage in the U.S. every year than any other weather-related disaster.  The ARC offers the following flood safety tips.

  • Stay away from floodwaters. If you come up on a flowing stream where water is above your ankles, stop, run around and go another way Six inches of swiftly moving water can  sweep you  off of your feet.
  • If you approach  a flooded  road while driving, turn around and go another way. If you are caught on a flooded road  and waters are rising rapidly around  you,  get out of the car quickly and move to higher ground. Most cars can be swept away by less than two feet of moving water.
  • Keep children out of the water. They are curious and often lack judgment about run ning water or contaminated water. Keep your pets out of the water too.

If a flood does strike your home or business, contact SERVPRO® of Burlington/ Woburn. Even minor floods have the potential to cause major damage to a  structure when not treated quickly and properly, and the cleanup is often an overwhelming task. The SERVPRO® System is prepared to handle any sized disaster. The sooner work begins, the sooner order can be restored.

When fire and water take control of your life, SERVPRO® of Burlington/ Woburn will help you take it back.

What Can Someone Do When They Experience a Fire Loss?

5/11/2017 (Permalink)

What Can Someone Do When They Experience a Fire Loss?

Getting life back to normal when someone’s home or business has been affected by fire damage is extremely stressful. An individual may experience emotional as well as financial hardship. Loss of valuables and family keepsakes may leave a person feeling helpless. Fire in their home or a fire in their business is a terrible site for an owner to encounter.

The property owner experiencing the fire loss may find it necessary to seek help from a professional fire cleanup company. The owner may not be able to enter the property when faced with a fire in their home or a fire in their business. The strong odors from smoke damage can be harmful to their health.

What Types of Damages Can a Fire in a Home or a Fire in a Business Cause?

Coming up against a fire in the home may become an extremely difficult situation. Types of damages an owner can expect include soot damage, smoke damage, and the air quality in the home is affected. Overall a fire loss can be an upsetting -as well as costly- experience.

Soot damage on rugs, upholstery, and curtains may be more costly to clean. In some cases, it may be easier to replace these items. Air quality may not improve until fire cleanup begins, and odors from smoke damage are removed. Fire damage to a home or business can seem like a nightmare.

Known Dangers of Commercial Fire Damage

All fires to any structure can be dangerous. A fire in a business can spread quickly to nearby areas. Commercial fire damage may involve dangerous gasses leaking and even explosives depending on the type of business in place. If not handled quickly a commercial fire damage can result in a long-term loss. Certain substances, like combustible metals often in industrial locations can emit undesirable chemicals making the air quality problematic.

Dealing with the aftermath of a fire in the business property can also put a dent on the finances for an owner. Especially when they solely rely on income produced from their business.

Not only can a commercial fire damage result in the destruction of items they have invested on, but also dealing with the repairs can be extremely costly. Heavy soot damage on clothing in retail shops, for instance, cannot be sold and is a complete loss to the owners.

Certain types of commercial fire damage may be compensated by an insurance company to help owners recover from a fire loss, however, it will likely not happen as quickly as they would like. The same can be said for homeowners that need to recover from the effects of a fire in their home. Beginning the fire cleanup process is imperative to prevent further destruction from fire damage.

What Does a Fire Cleanup Professional Do?

Fire cleanup professionals provide a variety of services to those that have experienced a fire loss. They have the equipment to clean areas affected by soot damage, and machines that improve air quality by eliminating pervasive odors due to smoke damage. Fire damage can go beyond what a home or business owner may see.

Visual inspection can show the soot damage around the structure, and the odors from smoke damage will affect the air quality, and the odors can linger on. An important step taken by a fire damage restoration company is to inspect behind walls and under flooring for additional fire damage. Working with a trusted company can help owners get their life back in order.

SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn is here to help! For more information, please visit our website at www.servrpoburlingtonwoburn.com or call (781) 935-8222.

Flooded Basement? What type of water could be in your basement.

5/11/2017 (Permalink)

Water Damage Flooded Basement? What type of water could be in your basement. Flooded Basement

Early spring brings melting snow and heavy rains, all which could potentially pose a threat to flooding your basement.  We get a lot of questions on the types of water.  To help you understand what kind of water could potentially be in your basement there are (3) categories:

Category 1:  Known as "clean water" which is clean at the releasing source and does not pose a hazard if consumed by humans.  Most of the water that comes into your home will be Category 1 until it leaves its source, either a supply line, an appliance, or melting snow or rain.  The water in this category may become cotaminated as it mixes with soils on or within floor coverings, walls, subfloors, etc..  

Category 2:   Water that begins with some degree of contamination and could cause sickness or discomfort if consumed by humans.  Also know as "gray water"  is typically overflow water from an appliance, toilet, or aquarium.  

Category 3:Water which is highly contaminated and could cause death or serious illness if consumed by humans. Also know as "black water" examples are sewage, rising flood water from rivers and streams, ground surface water flowing horizontally into homes.

Do's & Don'ts: Damage from Contaminated Water

5/11/2017 (Permalink)

Do’s & Don’ts: Damage From Contaminated Water

Do:

                Avoid all contact with sewage and items and contaminated by sewage.

                Wash your hands thoroughly after contact with contaminated items.

 

Don’t:

                Spread contaminated water by walking unnecessarily on damaged or wet areas.

                Turn on the HVAC system if there is a possibility of spreading contaminated air.

                Use household fans to dry the structure and spread contaminants.

                Use products for personal hygiene and cleanliness if exposed to the contaminated areas.

However if exposed to harmful waste, OSHA recommends a post-exposure medical evaluation.  Consult your local health department or physician.

When you are dealing with water damage, immediate action is crucial, contact SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn at 781-935-8222 Our response is immediate and we use advanced equipment and techniques to remove the water quickly.  We closely monitor and document the drying process to verify your property is dried properly and thoroughly. The main goal of SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn is to help minimize the interruption to your life and as quickly as possible make it "like it never even happened." 

Common Causes of Wildfires

5/11/2017 (Permalink)

   A wildfire is the potentially deadly catalyst that starts as an uncontrolled fire in a large undeveloped and un-populated area. If the response to these fires is not timely they can quickly get out of control and end up destroying homes and agriculture and killing animals and human life in their path. As many as 90 percent of wildland fires in the United States are caused by human carelessness or criminal intent. An unattended campfire, the burning of debris, negligently discarded cigarettes as well as intentional acts of arson are some of the ways that people cause tragedy. Wildfires can also be caused by an accumulation of dead matter (leaves, twigs, and trees) that create enough heat in some instances to spontaneously combust and ignite the surrounding area. Man-made combustion from arson, carelessness and lack of fire safety cause wildfire disasters every year. However, weather conditions contribute to the occurrence of wildfires as well. Lightning strikes or extended dry spells causing drought are weather related agitators. Lightning strikes the earth over 100,000 times a day and 10 to 20% of these lightning strikes can cause fire.  An average of 1.2 million acres of US woodland burn every year. And sadly a large wildfire is even capable of modifying the local weather conditions and producing its own weather.


     Summer is coming and many of us will be camping in the woods. We have known Smokey the Bear all our lives and have the responsibility to share his critical message with the next generation of campers. I love the commercial where Smokey comes out of the woods and gives a young camper a hug for carefully putting out his campfire. You can't help but smile. The message is stated subtly but is a good reminder of the detailed instructions Smokey has provided for years on how together we can prevent foret fires. As Smokey advises, keep campfires at a managemable size, allow wood to burn to ash completely, and pour a substantial amount of water on all embers until hissing sound stops.  If you do not have water, stir up the dirt or sand into the embers with a shovel and bury the fire making absolutely sure no embers are exposed and still smoldering. One last word of caution from the Bear who knows, “If it’s too hot to touch, it’s too hot to leave.”

Protective Measures for Thunderstorms

5/11/2017 (Permalink)

Protective Measures for Thunderstorms

In the United States, an average of 300 people are injured and 80 people are killed each year by lightning. Although most lightning victims survive, people struck by lightning often report a variety of long-term, debilitating symptoms.

Before Thunderstorms and Lightning
To prepare for a thunderstorm, you should do the following:

  • Remove dead or rotting trees and branches that could fall and cause injury or damage during a severe thunderstorm.
  • Remember the 30/30 lightning safety rule: Go indoors if, after seeing lightning, you cannot count to 30 before hearing thunder. Stay indoors for 30 minutes after hearing the last clap of thunder.

The following are guidelines for what you should do if a thunderstorm is likely in your area:

  • Postpone outdoor activities.
  • Get inside a home, building, or hard top automobile (not a convertible). Although you may be injured if lightning strikes your car, you are much safer inside a vehicle than outside.
  • Remember, rubber-soled shoes and rubber tires provide NO protection from lightning. However, the steel frame of a hard-topped vehicle provides increased protection if you are not touching metal.
  • Secure outdoor objects that could blow away or cause damage.
  • Shutter windows and secure outside doors. If shutters are not available, close window blinds, shades, or curtains.
  • Avoid showering or bathing. Plumbing and bathroom fixtures can conduct electricity.
  • Use a corded telephone only for emergencies. Cordless and cellular telephones are safe to use.
  • Unplug appliances and other electrical items such as computers and turn off air conditioners. Power surges from lightning can cause serious damage.
  • Use your battery-operated NOAA Weather Radio for updates from local officials.

Avoid the following:

  • Natural lightning rods such as a tall, isolated tree in an open area
  • Hilltops, open fields, the beach, or a boat on the water
  • Isolated sheds or other small structures in open areas
  • Anything metal—tractors, farm equipment, motorcycles, golf carts, golf clubs, and bicycles

During a Thunderstorm if you are:

In a forest:  Seek shelter in a low area under a thick growth of small trees.

In an open area:  Go to a low place such as a ravine or valley.  Be alert for flash floods.

On open water: Get to land and find shelter immediately.  

Anywhere you feel your hair stand on end (which indicates that lightning is about to strike) squat low to the ground on the balls of your feet.  Place your hands over your ears and your head between your knees.  Make yourself the smallest target possible and minimize your contact to the ground.  DO NOT lie flat on the ground.

In the event you experience storm damage please contact your restoration specialists at SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn at 781-935-8222.

Does Your Company Have an Evacuation Plan for Employees?

5/11/2017 (Permalink)

On their website, The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) provides important safety information as well as life saving tips for employers to share with their employees should it be necessary to evacuate a building in the event of an emergency. It is worth taking a look, you will be surprised at what you learn! Check it out.  https://www.osha.gov/SLTC/etools/evacuation/evac.html

 

     And although an emergency escape plan is not required for all businesses, OSHA highly recommends that you provide an emergency action plan to protect yourself, your employees, and your business space during an emergency situation. Here are some tips:

 

     A disorganized evacuation can result in confusion, injury, and property damage. When developing your emergency action plan, it is important to determine the following:

 

 

    • Conditions under which an evacuation would be necessary.

 

 

    • A clear chain of command and designation of the person in your business authorized to order an evacuation or shutdown.

 

    • Specific evacuation procedures, including routes and exits.

 

    • Specific evacuation procedures for high-rise buildings.



 



    • Procedures for assisting visitors and employees to evacuate, particularly those with disabilities or who do not speak English.

 

    • Designation of what, if any, employees will remain after the evacuation alarm to shut down critical operations or perform other duties before evacuating.

 

    • A means of accounting for employees after an evacuation.

 

 

 

 

    During development and implementation of your draft plan, think about all possible emergency situations and evaluate your workplace to see if it complies with OSHA's emergency standards.

 

    Emergencies don’t wait for regular business hours and neither do we. SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn provides emergency cleaning and restoration services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week—including all holidays. You can expect an immediate response time, day or night.

 

Need Emergency Service? Call Us 24/7 – (781) 935-8222

Classes of Mold

5/11/2017 (Permalink)

Like we always say, mold is everywhere and not all molds are harmful to us! Molds are often found in wet, damp places and can vary in color and smell. Mold is put into different categories based on their hazard:

Hazard Class C: While this group of molds are not health hazards – they can cause structural damages, and are recommended to be removed.

Hazard Class B: These are molds that if endured over long periods of time can cause allergic reactions

Hazard Class A: These are the molds we want to identify and remove immediately! These molds create toxins and if not handle correctly the air quality of a structure with steadily decline.

 

If you feel like your home or business might be affected by mold, give us a call at 781-935-8222. While we cannot determine what type of mold it may be – we can remediate it with no worry!

What is Lurking in Your Air Ducts?

5/11/2017 (Permalink)

Since the ventilation system is often the biggest culprit in poor indoor air quality, inspecting the ductwork should be a high priority.


In most cases, the HVAC system has been operating for some time without much attention. Dirt ducts can circulate odors, contaminants such as mold and irritating dust throughout your building or home. In some circumstances, such as after a fire, smoke or suspected mold growth, duct cleaning becomes an essential part of the cleanup process. 


Keeping the HVAC system and ductwork clean can potentially extend the life span of the equipment by allowing it to operate at peak condition, which may save you money. SERVPRO can often restore the HVAC system and ductwork to pre-damage conditions. 



  • We provide free written inspections and estimates

  • Eliminate offensive odors

  • Restore peak energy efficiency

  • Reduce potential for mold growth

  • Remediate bacteria, fungi and mold


Call us at 781-935-8222 to see how we can best improve your home or businesses air quality. We can make it "Like it never even happened"

Flooded Basement Tips

3/1/2017 (Permalink)

Water Damage Flooded Basement Tips Flooded Basement

Avoid a flooded basement, this year and forever!

 

Normal spring thaws can cause a small trickle to become a bigger issue. Foundation cracks that weren’t a problem before have the potential to become a huge problem now.

This year’s sudden spring thaw could exacerbate any issues that were not taken care of in the past.

In late winter and early spring, the ground can’t absorb all of the rain and snow melt, so it flows along the foundation. A proper drain system, sump pump and sealed cracks will help you avoid problems this spring.

Here are a few simple tips:

  • Keep your gutters clean (this will keep rain water from flowing directly to your foundation)
  • Grade landscaping away from foundation (add mulch or soil at an angle, higher at the foundation, slanting away)
  • Check your sump pump or purchase a submersible pump and fans

Move valuables and expensive items you may have in your basement, or use pallets and shelves to keep them elevated.

When there is a natural disaster, often the emergency items you need are sold out, so plan ahead.

If you do have a flood

There are still things you can do to mitigate the damage.

  • If you can do it safely, turn off the electricity.

But don’t get electrocuted! If you can reach the breaker without standing in water turn it off.  

  • If you’ve got just a bit of water in spots consider yourself lucky. If you can clean it up with a wet vac and have fans to dry it afterward you might be all set.
  • If your basement has flooded more than an inch, it’s best to call us.

If you have a sump pump and fans, you may still wish to tackle the job by yourself.  Submersible water pumps work best when you place them in the deepest part of the flooded water. If dirt and debris builds up and clogs the screen around the pump, clean it out and consider using something like a small tool to prop it up a bit. This will increase the space for water to flow through the pump. Use the widest and shortest hose possible, this will enable the pump to work faster.

When all the water is up and it appears dry you may still want us simply to treat the previously flooded area in order to kill any mold before it’s an issue.

To avoid this problem next year you must identify where the water came in.

  • First, seal the cracks
  • Then, dig to avert water flow next time

Remember water will travel down the path of least resistance. It is strongly advised to dig outside near the foundation and repack the soil. Dig down to where the water came, and then dig out and to the sides a few feet. There is a channel that you may not see but you will disturb and avert if you do this. Next year, water will not flow in that same direction if done correctly.

Last but not least, our friends at Signature Page Real Estate in Woburn, suggest having a dehumidifier in any basement, old or new.

Recap:

 

  • Clean your gutters
  • Have a sump pump, wet vac and fans
  • Fix lawn grading
  • Seal the cracks
  • Dig to avert water flow next year
  • Have a dehumidifier

 

If water comes in and it’s too much to tackle yourself, call us. Mitigating water damage is one of our core competencies. We’ll tackle the job at hand, and be sure your water problem doesn’t become a mold problem later: Like it never even happened.

 

Frozen Pipes

12/30/2016 (Permalink)

General Frozen Pipes Frozen Pipe

When temperatures get below 20 degrees you should flush your toilets and run hot water through your pipes every 4 hours. When it’s extremely cold let cold water slowly drip from faucets served by exposed pipes and pipes particularly close to the foundation.

The lines going to your toilets are more susceptible because they have only cold water running through them. The lower the temperature the more crucial it is to flush toilets regularly. If the toilet sounds irregular or makes a crackling sound while filling up the tank or tank and bowl, or is slow to fill, you have a problem. It’s important to remedy it quickly.

Identify the line in the basement. You can often pin point exactly where it’s frozen because it will be colder to the touch.

Set up a space heater and aim it directly at the frozen area of the line for at least an hour, or until tank and bowl fills at the normal rate. With old style heaters, be careful of a potential fire hazard. Give the space heater space. Do not have flammable materials within several feet of the heater and be certain it’s standing or balanced securely.

Check for drafts. You may find a draft that is aimed directly at the line. These lines are often very close to the foundation. You can identify the draft by simply using your hand or a candle.

Cover up the drafty area. This can be a quick fix by adhering plastic or even a towel over the draft, or you could use caulk or spackle from the inside. Just stop that draft from aiming at your pipe. Suring up drafty areas from the outside and inside is ideal, but at least tackle the problem from the inside for now.

If it’s too late and your pipe has burst, shut off the main water supply, crank up the heat and call a plumber. We’re here if you need us for clean up afterward. We’ll clean up all water, leave fans and dehumidifiers behind until it’s thoroughly dry and be sure your water problem doesn’t turn into a mold problem.

Trade Show

11/4/2016 (Permalink)

Community Trade Show Trade Show

SERVPRO exhibited at the Community Associations Institute-New England Chapter. The event was held Saturday, October 22’nd at the Burlington Marriot Hotel.

The association serves and educates officers of various Condominium Associations and Property Management Personnel alike. Approximately 1000 were in attendance. CAI is a great resource for local condominium board officers and property management companies. It gives them ideas on how to better serve the local residents of our community.

Some of the sessions included “Transition from Developer to Unit Owner Control” and “Energy Efficiency”. Experts on these subjects serve to enhance the condominium ownership experience and help the environment.

SERVPRO is proud to have been a part of the event. We were happy to have run into many whom we have served over the years. It’s very satisfying to hear the personal stories of local residents and business owners. They recalled how we were there for them immediately following a fire or flood and helped them get back in their homes and businesses as soon as possible.

Weather it’s a catastrophe like fire and water or a service call for mold or duct cleaning, we constantly strive to live up to our motto “Like it never even happened”.

Fire Prevention Week

10/13/2016 (Permalink)

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) holds their Fire Prevention Week activities in October; this year it’s October 9th-15th.

 

SERVPRO is proud to announce our sponsorship and participation during this time. Our local fire fighters visit children at school and hold open houses. The kids enjoy these visits and learn the basics of fire prevention.

 

SERVPRO has provided fire safety coloring books and crayons to the communities of North Reading, Wilmington, Winchester and Stoneham. The fire fighters will distribute these gifts during their visits. It’s a fun way to support our local fire fighters and give back to the community.

 

In winter, we see an increased risk for household fires. Below are four of the top six causes of fires. Notice the presence of danger increases in winter, due to an increase of usage in these categories:

 

In the spirit of fire prevention, we’d like to remind you to:

  • Replace smoke detector batteries.
  • Replace smoke alarms every 10 years.
  • Have an escape plan and meeting place.
  • Space heaters need adequate space around them. Don’t place objects to close.
  • Thoroughly clean your dryer of lint.
  • Never use a candle if an oxygen tank is used in the home.

24 Hour Emergency Water Damage Service

9/26/2016 (Permalink)

 

SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn is available 24 hours a day for water emergencies, large or small. When you are dealing with water damage, immediate action is crucial. A delay of just a few hours can greatly increase the severity of the water damage.

We Answer the Phone Ready to Help
Call Today - 781-935-8222

We understand that when you call us, you may be feeling confused, stressed, and vulnerable. You need an expert to guide you through this crisis. SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn has the specific water damage training and experience to help you through this tough time. We specialize in water damage restoration—in fact, it's the cornerstone of our business.

What to Expect

When you call, we will ask several questions regarding your water damage emergency. These questions will help us determine what equipment and resources to bring, including how many trained SERVPRO Professionals may be needed.

Our SERVPRO Representative will ask several questions:

  • Your name and contact information
  • Your insurance information (if applicable)
  • The street address of the water-damaged home or business
  • When did the flooding or water damage occur?
  • What caused the water damage (if known)?
  • Is there electricity available (on-site)?

About SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn

SERVPRO of Burlington/ Woburn 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.

Community News

9/14/2016 (Permalink)

128 Business Expo


On September 7’Th SERVPRO of Burlington/Woburn attended the 128 Business Expo in Waltham. It was an event for local businesses to meet and greet fellow Chamber of Commerce members and others in the business community.


Approximately 400 people were in attendance. Among them were many not-profits and charitable foundations as well. These groups do a great deal of fund raising at such events through the local business community. SERVPRO was one of the participating companies.  The expo was a great way to network with other business owners in our area. We at SERVPRO also appreciate the opportunity to educate the group on our services and community involvement.  


Thank you to the Westin Waltham-Boston Hotel for providing a great evening and a lovely venue. We look forward to future events.

Networking Event

9/14/2016 (Permalink)

Multi-Chamber Event, Chamber of Commerce

On August 24’Th SERVPRO of Burlington/Woburn attended and displayed at the Multi-Chamber event in Burlington.

SERVPRO is proud to be active members of the NSCC, North Suburban Chamber of Commerce. The NSCC serves the communities of Bedford, Billerica, Burlington, Carlisle, Concord, Lexington, Lincoln, North Reading, Reading, Stoneham, Wakefield, Wilmington, and Woburn as well as Hanscom Air Force Base.

The event was held at the Café Escadrille. They provided a great evening, delicious appetizers and a fantastic venue. Several hundred were in attendance.

Many local businesses as well as non-profits joined us. As always, these events are a good chance to network with local businesses, but more importantly, they provide a great opportunity for charitable groups to make enormous strides in their fund raising efforts.

Here to Help

8/31/2016 (Permalink)

Community Here to Help Helping Hand

If you’re a home or business owner the day will most likely come when you need help with an emergency. It may be a flood, fire, burst pipe or faulty sprinkler system.

Your first action in many instances should be to call 911. Your towns’ finest (fire, ambulance and police personnel) are trained to help in an emergency; this much we know.

But, what can you do yourself? How can you prepare? September is national preparedness month. Visit https://www.ready.gov/september It’s filled with useful tips, lists of items everyone should have on hand, and so much more.

There’s more that you can do. SERVPRO is serious about helping local home and business owners. We’re so serious that we put our own resource together. It’s a free, very useful phone application that can be found at https://ready.SERVPRO.com/

It holds all your critical contacts (water, fire, electric, insurance and more) in one place. You can locate, photograph and tag things like water and electric shut offs. Home owners and business owners alike can access and use this free tool. It can be a bit more involved for a commercial building so call and we’ll assist you for free.

Fire

8/31/2016 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Fire Warning

FIRE!

We all know that we’re in the middle of one of the worst local droughts on record. This blog is just a friendly reminder to be extra careful.

I’m sure you’re all familiar with Smokey the Bear and his fire danger meter. One fire fighter told me that it’s at “Extreme” right now. That’s as high as you can get, and it’s rare in this area.

 Your town may have ordinances (temporary or otherwise) against outdoor fires. Check with your local authorities.

http://www.mass.gov/eopss/agencies/dfs/ (The “dfs” stands for Department of Fire Services)

Even some camp grounds in New England have a temporary moratorium on fires. Check locally about that as well.

There is so much more to say about fire safety. October 9-15 is national fire prevention week and we’ll have more then. In the meantime feel free to check out the following sites.

http://www.nfpa.org/public-education/resources/safety-tip-sheets

http://www.nfpa.org/public-education/campaigns/fire-prevention-week

Fed Up With Foul Smelling Clothes?

8/26/2016 (Permalink)

General Fed Up With Foul Smelling Clothes? Foul Smelling Clothes?


Do you store your cool weather clothes away during summer?  If so, this can help!


Clothes with a musty smell can usually be taken care of by using one of these common household products.



  • Baking soda

  • White vinegar

  • Borax


Just fill your washing machine with clothes, hot water and your normal detergent. Once full, pour a cup of your selected product in and agitate to ensure it’s mixed properly. You can use a mixture of vinegar and baking soda, a half cup each.


For best results dry the clothes outside. A sunny breezy day is best. A place that gets both wind and sun is ideal.


Keep in mind, if your clothes smell musty it’s because of mold. Our team at SERVPRO are here to help

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