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5 Advantages of a National Disaster Recovery Team

6/20/2022 (Permalink)

Damage home due to storm if you have a mayor disaster in your Lakeland, FL area call SERVPRO of Bartow/Lakeland Highlands

Five Benefits of Having a National Disaster Recovery Team

Better restoration outcomes are possible when you can call a recovery team and have skilled experts quickly arrive on site. Mitigation is also most effective in a timely response to disaster. Here are five reasons to rely on a franchise in a nationwide network for disaster recovery services in Lakeland, FL.

1. Many Regions Are Home To Multiple Franchises

The leading restoration company has a network of over 2,000 franchises operating in North America. A centralized dispatch service connects property owners to the closest available professsionals.

2. A National Team Shares Expertise and Equipment

In the event of a major disaster, many property owners may require restoration services. Networked providers can deliver more machinery and skilled manpower for storm response than independent restoration firms.

3. Trained Techs Provide Timely Responses

Restoration technicians should arrive on location in a timely manner to inspect damage and initiate mitigation and restoration. A national service offering Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification can provide the right specialist for any job.

4. Fast Response With Centralized Disaster Recovery Deployment

Calling a nationwide number to be connected with the nearest local franchise is the fastest way to resolve damage. It is crucial to take action during the hours and days immediately after a structure suffers storm damage.

5. Industry-Leading Restoration Specialists
The IICRC programs run by the leading restoration service ensure a highly trained workforce. Insurance companies may consider certified franchises preferred providers of restoration services for the purpose of settling claims.

These reasons for choosing national disaster recovery apply after any incident in Lakeland, FL. A trustworthy company with franchises located across the United States and Canada can be the best recourse. Networked franchise locations have more resources to process and respond in a timely manner to service calls in the wake of disasters.

3 Essential Things To Know About Category 3 Water Damage

6/9/2022 (Permalink)

Bartow Verizon Store Water Damage A leak in the roof at this Verizon store flooded the showroom and other portions of the store.

Three Things You Should Know About Category 3 Water Damage

Water damage can inflict itself in many ways and to various degrees. The most alarming type of water damage is Category 3, or black water. This contaminant-filled water can not only cause destruction to properties but pose health risks as well. Here are the three major things your know in the event black water is found in your Highland City, FL, property. 

1. It Is Highly Contaminated

Water damage ranges from Category 1, or clean water, to grossly unsanitary black water. Category 3 water is filled with biohazards like fungi, viruses, and bacteria, as well as chemical toxins. It's important to note that while Category 2 damage, or gray water, also features a high level of contaminants, it does not pose as much of a health threat upon exposure. However, gray water that has gone untreated for too long can develop more bacteria and be re-categorized as black water.

2. Flood Water Is a Common Source

Buildings that face flood damage after a storm are actually dealing with black water. Rainwater itself is not contaminated, however, groundwater flooding or rising seawater contains a collection of harmful bio elements. A sewage backup is another common source of black water, so always consider your health and safety should a toilet overflow with fecal matter.

3. Water Damage Specialists Should Always Handle Cleanup

When it comes to treating Category 3 water, rely on water damage mitigation professionals to get the job done. These highly-trained experts can properly handle the extraction of flood water and dry out the affected space. Black water's dangerous properties require extensive sanitizing which a cleanup company will handle after the removal of water. Any structural damage that remains will then be taken care of as needed. 

Category 3 water comes highly contaminated so be wary of any buildup of flood water or wastewater and leave the cleanup to professionals. 

Why Board Up Services Are Important

6/8/2022 (Permalink)

Board up home Boarding up your home after a fire also keeps out water, debris, and other natural elements that may otherwise blow in.

Why Are Boarding Up Services Important?

A fire in your home in Bartow, FL, causes damage that only certified fire restoration experts can fix. The first thing technicians are likely to do when they arrive on site is to board up any vulnerable spots in the structure. This important step has several benefits.

Crime Prevention

Most people don't look for ways to enter into a property that is not their own. But thieves and other criminals seek out vulnerable spots that make their crimes easier. Emergency board up services make it harder for them to get into your home to commit various offenses:

  • Information or identity theft
  • Vandalism
  • Property theft
  • Material scrapping

Liability Avoidance

Even if people enter your home uninvited, you may still be liable for any physical harm they sustain while they are there. A fire makes your structure unstable, so injury is more likely for anyone who ventures in. If you board up the holes in your walls, windows, and roof, however, they will be less tempted to enter.

Fire Damage Coverage

Your insurance policy covers the restoration process for your home, but there are still expectations that you will take the appropriate measure to prevent further damage. In fact, if you don't protect your home after a fire, your neglect may nullify the policy. This may leave you paying for repairs out of pocket.

Overall Protection

Boarding up your home after a fire also keeps out water, debris, and other natural elements that may otherwise blow in. Your home is already damaged by flames; leaving it vulnerable only causes additional problems. These issues can drive up the cost of restoration considerably.

Technicians board up your home after a fire to protect it from further damage. This crucial first step helps the mitigation process go smoothly and quickly, getting you back into your home as soon as possible. 

The Importance of Storm Shutters

5/31/2022 (Permalink)

Storm shutters shade windows on a beach house on a sunny day The cost of installing storm coverings varies depending on square footage, labor fees, location and shutter style.

Storm Shutters And Their Importance

Inclement weather can have devastating consequences. Preparing your property for tropical storms is necessary when living in a coastal area, and strengthening your home to withstand a hurricane is crucial for your residence's safekeeping. Impact coverings act as barriers against high winds, rain and falling debris. Consider the following when making decisions about protecting your property from dangerous weather.

Type of Exterior Safeguards Available

When considering preventative measures in Mulberry, FL, one essential form of protection is the installation of storm panels. These panels ensure that sensitive components of your home, such as windows and doors, are guarded against high winds. The four main categories of storm shutters are:

  • Accordion: Rolls on a track and snaps together in place
  • Colonial: Hinges and stacks on the side and swings in for closing
  • Bahama: Hinges at a 45-degree angle and closes from the top
  • Roll Down: Lowers from the top of the window using a manual crank or motor

Each of these options provides your property with adequate impact protection.

What You Can Expect To Spend on Shutters

The cost of installing storm coverings varies depending on square footage, labor fees, location and shutter style. You can expect to pay between $10 and $70 per square foot for materials and $40 and $100 per hour in labor fees.

Increase Your Home Value

Should you decide to sell your property, shuttered windows can make potential buyers feel better about acquiring a home in a hurricane zone. People looking to purchase in Mulberry, FL, also tend to pay more for the benefit of added security against storms.

Some of the most beautiful residential locations experience the most dangerous weather conditions. In addition to securing personal property against the elements, consider trusting a residential cleanup company to aid in the aftermath of a storm. Doing so can help alleviate the stress of property damage and get your home back in its original condition.

Plumbing Problems That Could Lead to a Toilet Overflow

5/26/2022 (Permalink)

Leakage of water from a toilet due to blockage of the pipe. We have the training, experience, and equipment to restore your home after water damage. SERVPRO is ready 24/7, call us!

Plumbing Issues That May Cause A Toilet Overflow

When the plumbing system in your home is working perfectly, you won't need to worry about facing a sewage cleaning problem. However, things can and do go awry, which could lead to contaminated water on the floor of your bathroom. This can happen for several reasons, the most common being a plugged toilet. When the water cannot go down, it will go up and overflow the commode. Clearing the clog, usually with just a plunger, takes care of the problem.

Sometimes, toilet water seeps out from the base as the result of an old or faulty seal. This can also be fixed rather quickly, either by yourself or by a plumber. Other problems could be more complicated and even might be a little mysterious.

A Toilet Overflow and Shower Connection

If outgoing plumbing lines are clogged between the toilet and the sewer, you could run into a situation where every time you take shower the toilet runs over. The solution is to take care of the clogged pipe, either by yourself or through the work of a professional plumber. Before you tackle the job yourself, consider these factors:

  • The clogged pipe could be difficult to reach
  • The clog could be difficult to clear
  • You could cause additional problems
  • You could be wasting your time

A Sewage Cleaning Solution

If the problem results in contaminated water spreading throughout your home, the best solution is to call for a local water damage mitigation company in Mulberry, FL. A trained and certified crew will arrive quickly with all of the tools necessary to clean up your home. This means the offending water will be removed, the home dried out and then cleaned and sanitized. This will be done through a proven process that is safe and efficient. As the saying goes, sewage cleaning is not for wimps. Call the professionals for a job that will last and solve your problems.

Chemical Drain Cleaners – Friend or Foe?

5/26/2022 (Permalink)

Advertisement for chemicals to clean the drain If you don't take care of a clog immediately, it could cause extensive damage that may require assistance from water damage restoration specialists.

Chemical Drain Cleaners: Are They A Friend Or An Enemy?

Water that refuses to drain in your Lakeland Highlands, FL, home is an aggravating problem. One solution is to try a bottle of liquid clog remover. Unfortunately, while this chemical may be good at clearing your clogged drain, it may not be the best choice – at least not the best first choice. This guide will help you decide if this cleaner is a good option.

What Are Chemical Clog Removers, Anyway?

Chemical options for clearing a clog come in liquid, gel or powder and, combined with the clogging materials, help disintegrate the blockage. They come in three varieties:

  • Oxidizing – Include substances such as bleach or peroxide
  • Caustic – Contain alkali ingredients such as lye or potash
  • Acid – Solutions comprised of acids such as muriatic or sulfuric; are not commonly available to consumers.

If used according to the directions, these items may be suitable for partial clogs but are not recommended for a fully clogged drain as damage to the plumbing may occur.

How Does This Damage Happen?

When combined with organic materials, which comprise the clog, these products create a chemical reaction that produces heat. This heat aids in the breakdown of the gunk, allowing it to finish its journey down the pipe. The high temperature can damage plastic or older pipes by warping them, possibly causing a leak.

Another way a chemical drain cleaner may harm your pipes is if the clog doesn’t clear quickly enough or at all. The components can corrode the inside of the lines, causing them to become weaker, which may require sewage cleaning.

What Can You Do to Clear a Clogged Drain?

Before turning to the chemical route, you can opt for mechanical or biological options. Mechanical methods include plungers, drain snakes and augers and usually work faster than other methods. Biological treatments use enzymes to help dissolve the obstruction but can take up to 24 hours to be effective.

Chemical drain de-cloggers can undoubtedly be your friend. If you don't take care of a clog immediately, it could cause extensive damage that may require assistance from water damage restoration specialists.

How To Maintain a Building Envelope To Prevent Rain Damage

4/26/2022 (Permalink)

Storm damage to a commercial business in Eagle Lake, FL.

How to Keep a Building Envelope Clean to Avoid Rain Damage

Rain damage to your Eagle Lake, FL, business can cause serious problems, including black mold and structural issues. Fortunately, maintaining your building's envelope helps protect it from inclement weather.


The building envelope is the membrane between the indoors and outdoors. The envelope keeps out wind and rain and minimizes heat loss. The barrier consists of several elements, including the following:

  • Roof
  • Doors
  • Walls
  • Foundation
  • Seals

An envelope that keeps out most external elements is referred to as "tight," while a barrier that allows more airflow is called "loose." A tight envelope will prevent rain damage more effectively and provide better climate control than a loose envelope.


Although even tightly sealed buildings occasionally incur damage that requires the skills of a professional restoration team, routine maintenance is still the best way to protect your building from the elements. Perform regular inspections of all components of the envelope. Depending on your skill level and the size of your building, you may be able to examine the structure yourself. Inspections should be performed at least twice a year. If a particularly strong storm hits your area, go out afterward and do a visual check to make sure no damage was done.

If an inspection reveals any damage or weak spots, perform the necessary repairs as quickly as possible. If any building materials need to be replaced, a professional can guide you to the best solutions for the weather patterns in your area.
Even when no damage is present, you may decide to upgrade some components of your building envelope to increase their energy efficiency or weather resistance. Make sure all upgrades are installed correctly. Otherwise, your building may be at risk during the next storm.

Rain damage is a common issue among business owners, but it is preventable in many cases. A tight envelope that is properly maintained will decrease the chances of your building suffering storm damage and minimize any damage that does occur.

Wise Storm Preparedness Tips for Property Managers

4/21/2022 (Permalink)

Storm preparedness keeps residents safe.

As a property manager in Winter Haven, FL, one of your major duties is storm preparedness. Neglecting this responsibility means that bad weather may have a particularly negative impact, creating even more damage than there might otherwise be. Thankfully, there are commercial property restoration professionals that can fix almost any type of structural catastrophe. Here is some advice regarding how property managers should react to and prepare for bad weather.

Weather Disaster Responsibilities of Property Managers

Those in charge of residential properties shoulder many obligations after a storm, including:

  • Checking the grounds for downed power lines
  • Examining windows for cracks and gas lines for leaks
  • Erecting security barriers so that vandals and thieves cannot enter

The effects of weather damage can compound a property manager's post-storm responsibilities, making storm preparedness an essential strategy for keeping your premises running smoothly.

Weather Disaster Preparation for Property Managers
Your primary concern when it comes to storms is keeping tenants safe. Assess your complex for the best escape options. Share your analysis with everyone who could benefit. A more expensive yet potentially lifesaving option is to create a safe room built to FEMA specifications.
High winds can knock over grills and start fires. Mandate that barbecue equipment is immediately brought inside after use. Additionally, using fireproof materials, such as fiber cement siding, helps reduce the odds of an accidental blaze.
Property management requires fast action under pressure. Have emergency numbers handy so that you can quickly call the authorities even when you feel panicked. Write these contacts down so that they may be easily accessed even if a power loss means your computer won't turn on and your phone's battery is drained. Keep a flashlight nearby so you are able to read your list in complete darkness.
Storm preparedness keeps residents safe, reduces building damage, and makes your job easier. Employ these recommendations if you are responsible for any type of residential property.

4 Quick Tips To Prepare Your Business for a Storm

4/8/2022 (Permalink)

Back up your files and data.

Storm Preparedness

Storms can hit Mulberry, FL, very quickly — some with very little warning. In worst cases, the only notice you’ll get is when floodwater starts coming in. Your business needs to be prepared before it happens and be ready to act immediately when necessary.

A major storm that gets in can be a business-closing disaster. In fact, studies show that a staggering 90% of companies fail within two years of a disaster that forces them to close for at least a couple of days. However, the same studies show that being prepared can substantially boost your ability to reopen and stay open. Here are four steps to help you reopen quickly, beat the competition and keep growing your business after even a major disaster.

1. Be Ready for a Flood

Floods kill more Americans each year than any other disaster, and water damage is a leading cause of insurance claims. Have employees ready to evacuate immediately if there’s a flood watch.
Damage from floodwater is usually not covered by regular commercial insurance. You need a special flood insurance policy, which can be found on FEMA’s website. If you’re in a high-risk flood zone, you should make sure you have this policy.

2. Back Up Your Files and Data

With so many cloud services available, you should put all data possible in your secured cloud account. Critical paperwork should be stored in a safe that can survive a fire or flooded building.

3. Know What Alerts Mean

The National Weather Service issues smartphone emergency alerts. Know what they mean and use them to stay prepared.

4. Get Restoration Help Quickly

Keep the number of a water restoration company on hand. The sooner professionals can arrive, the less the cleanup process will cost. They can get the water out quickly, saving tons of damage.
Being ready in advance is your key to storm resiliency. Storm and flood water damage doesn’t have to be the end of your enterprise.

Home Restoration After Flooding

3/29/2022 (Permalink)

Storm damage restoration in Lakeland, FL.

After a Flood, You May Need To Restore Your Home

Take care of your most valuable investment—your home—by having a content cleaning plan. If storm-related flooding or pipe burst occurs in Lakeland, FL, you’ll be equipped to deal with any eventuality.

1. Whom to Call

The most important step in the event of a residential flood is the accurate assessment of the damage. Never enter a totally inundated basement, especially before the electrical systems have been shut off. Murky water with floating debris may be indicative of a high degree of contamination, especially if the body of water has come in contact with sewage or sewer lines. In these cases, it is best to contact a qualified water cleanup professional.

2. What to Do

Most cleanup services will begin by pumping water out of the affected area and ensuring that no continual leak remains. However, content cleaning involves more than just removing the obvious standing water. Many materials retain moisture and can harbor mold and bacterial growth. Porous materials and materials embedded deep in your home structures with poor air exposure may need to be torn out and replaced. Other non-porous materials can usually be dried provided that the room has sufficient airflow to clear the trapped water for good.

3. Other Considerations

Any substances that have come into contact with black water will likely need to be both dried and disinfected. Most professional services accomplish this with a combination of chemical and ultraviolet exposures to ensure that your belongings are decontaminated without damaging them. If drywall and insulation needs complete replacement, you might consider improving the plastic vapor barrier against the interior wall as well.

All in all, the most professional services can provide a content cleaning process at a reasonable cost with minimal disruption. Have the contact information of a cleanup company ready in case you or someone you know suffers any type of flooding event.