Recent Posts

Adding Storm Shutters to a Home

7/27/2021 (Permalink)

Storm shutter shade windows in a yellow house During a storm, storm shutters can protect you and your home's interior from flying glass and debris.

Types Of Storm Shutters

When nature is at its most wrathful in North Fort Myers, FL, high winds are often responsible for property damage. Installing window protection can be a prudent investment to protect your home and its contents. Learning about the window types available is the first step toward making an appropriate purchase for your needs.

Know Your Options

Shutters designed to be a temporary application when gales are predicted are the least expensive and least aesthetically-pleasing option. Permanent ones can be costly but add design interest and practical functions. Shutter styles include:

• Temporary: These are made of steel, aluminum, or polycarbonate and are held in place by channels bolted onto the house above and below windows. Channels are removable, and the cost is usually less than $20 per window.
• Accordion: These are permanent, manually operated, and stored in boxes alongside windows when they are not in use. Made of polycarbonate or metal, they usually cost between $15 and $25 per square foot.
• Rolling: These are also permanent and have the added benefit of offering insulation and increased privacy as well as protection from high winds. Made of polycarbonate or high-quality steel, they can be manually or automatically activated. Prices range from $20-$30 per square foot.
• Bahama: These offer shade and privacy as well as storm protection. They range from $15 to $20 per square foot.
• Colonial style: These are both permanent and decorative. Depending on window size, the shutters can be tri-fold or bi-fold. They are bolted into place when needed and range in price from $200 to $500 per window, depending on size and material.

Storm shutters can protect you and the interior of your home from flying glass and debris in the midst of a storm. However, in the event that high winds damage your home, professionals can help with interior and exterior damage and cleanup once the storm has passed.

Why is Mold Growing Here – Again?

7/19/2021 (Permalink)

brown stingy hairy mold growing around air conditioning system Mold growth around air conditioning system.

When mold first appeared in your Fort Myers Shores, FL, business you took immediate and thorough steps to address the problem – only to see it return to the same spot as if nothing ever happened. Mold growth is a pervasive issue both frustrating and endangering to your place of business, threatening property damage and an array of potential health effects. However, it shouldn’t become a recurring issue.

Understanding Mold Growth

Mold spores are a natural occurrence, microscopic in size and present almost everywhere. To grow into the familiar fungal nuisance the spores require four factors:

  • Darkness
  • Moisture
  • Organic nutrients
  • A surface to grow on

Dark places such as HVAC units or ductwork, interior walls, carpet and subflooring are all prime examples of places mold can thrive. The microscopic nature of mold spores doesn’t require significant amounts of water to grow, and when confronting mold in the same location water damage is most often the culprit. Check for remaining water damage in the location of the mold; HVAC systems can leave condensation and poor insulation may leave moisture buildup within the interior structure. Furthermore, check for humidity levels within your building. The EPA recommends indoor humidity levels remain between 30 and 50 percent. High humidity can create water vapor in the air; just enough for mold spores to thrive.

Understanding Mold Remediation

Unfortunately, there is no such thing as complete mold removal. The microscopic spores will always remain, but without the four key factors will not have the opportunity to grow into a colony. Thus, when mold is a recurring problem, it is a sure sign that water damage is still present in that location. To remediate mold, moisture levels must be addressed:

  • Fix leaky pipes and malfunctioning HVAC systems
  • Dry any liquid spills quickly and thoroughly
  • Regularly utilize a dehumidifier
  • Consider replacing porous material that mold has grown on

If you have taken these steps and mold growth is still occurring, a professional mold remediation team may be required. With the appropriate training and high-tech equipment, they can effectively keep mold the microscopic neighbor it should be.

Fire Damage Specialists In Punta Gorda

7/2/2021 (Permalink)

Yellow banner that says Caution, background of a burned house House fires are rare, but it is good to have a plan for them just in case.

Fire Damage Specialists

People do not ever plan on something going wrong in their homes. House fires are an incident that everyone knows can happen, but most people do not think that it could happen to them. However, accidents can take place even here in Punta Gorda. House fires are rare, but it is good to have a plan for them just in case.

Of course, the first step is to make sure the fire is out, and everyone is safe, then the damage can be assessed. At this point, it's wise to contact SERVPRO's fire damage experts in Punta Gorda. The specialists come in and figure out what needs to be done to restore your home back to its original condition.

When a home gets burnt, a fire causes two types of damage. In parts of the home adjacent to the source, the house's structure may get burnt or charred. In other places of the structure, smoke and soot produced from the fire can cause damage to places in the house that are not right next to where the fire burned.

Areas of the home that suffer burn damage will either get treated or replaced. If the drywall did not get burned too badly, then the walls can get scrubbed and then sprayed with a special sealant paint. If the drywall got burnt badly enough, then it must be removed, and the stud must get inspected. In some cases, if the studs do not get burnt then they can get sanded down and sprayed with a special paint that seals in odors.

When a fire takes place in a home, smoke from the fire can damage other places in the home besides just the room the fire burned. Our crews at SERVPRO are skilled at smoke damage and odor restoration. Smoke damage in the home can get treated by scrubbing the soot off of areas with specialized sponges and chemicals. In some cases, an ozone machine is used to get odors out of contents inside the home, carpet, and curtains.

Having a fire inside your home is never a pleasant experience. If ever your life gets turned upside by a house fire, contact SERVPRO of N. Ft. Myers / Punta Gorda at (941) 575-5910 for help 24/7.

What To Know About Water Heaters

6/30/2021 (Permalink)

Water heater Periodically inspect your water heater and look for any signs of damage or build-up.

You can thank your water heater for the hot water that fuels your dishwashers, showers, and baths. These appliances are in almost every household and are used to heat up cold water that runs through the pipes. However, many homeowners don’t maintain their heaters as well as they should, which can increase the risk of water damage. Here are a few tips about this helpful appliance.

What Your Water Heater Does

The large cylinder contains a heating mechanism that heats the water inside. The water goes through a pipe within the machine and is heated. The heater is a great insulator, so the heat remains inside the cylinder and doesn’t escape into the air. The heated water within the appliance moves through the pipes to your faucet on demand.

Why The Heater Should Be Maintained
These appliances are large and full of water, so they can be a big hazard. Most steel tanks are glass-lined to prevent damage and leakage, but this doesn’t mean that problems can’t occur. If the heater suffers from a hole or piercing, it should be replaced quickly.
There are a few ways that these appliances can be damaged:

  • High pressure
  • Large sediment build-up
  • Rust

These issues can cause a lot of damage and might require you to get professional water damage repair.

How To Take Care of Your Water Heater
It’s important to take care of your home in Salvista, FL, by keeping an eye on your appliance. One of the best ways to maintain your heater is to flush it often.
To do this, first, drain away from the water. Once all the water has left the appliance through the pipes, refill it up halfway with cold water. Access the water heater flush panel to clear away sediment and fill up the heater with fresh water. This can help prevent blockage and reduce high pressure.
Periodically inspect your water heater and look for any signs of damage or build-up. By doing this, you can reduce the risk of water damage.

4 Tips for Preventing Dryer Fires

6/30/2021 (Permalink)

Horizontal photo of female hand taking the lint out from dirty air filter of the dyer machine Clean out the lint screen after every load.

How Can You Prevent A Dryer Fire

There are many ways for a fire to break out in a home in Fort Myers, FL. One overlooked location is the dryer. There are a number of ways for a dryer fire to develop. Nearly 3,000 of these fires are reported every year, and they result in over $35 million in property damage annually. Fortunately, with some routine maintenance, you should not have to worry as much about a lint fire forming.

1. Keep the Top of the Dryer Free of Any Debris

In the event a fire does break out in your laundry room, you do not want to give it more fuel that could cause it to spread to other areas of your home. Therefore, do not leave anything on top of your dryer. This includes clothing, boxes and books. You also want to keep the areas behind and around the dryer clear.

2. Clean Out the Lint Screen After Every Load

A good habit to get into is to clean the lint screen before every use. After a while, you will start doing it without thinking about it. Even a small amount of material in the system can result in a lint fire. To remind you, you should keep a small wastebasket in your laundry room.

3. Clean the Vent Line Regularly

You should detach your vent line once in a while and make sure it is not getting clogged up by lint or various pieces of debris. If you are unsure of what to look for in the vent, then you should consider hiring a professional to come out and take a look at it.

4. Inspect the Vent Hose

Another component to examine regularly is the vent hose. If your current hose is not made out of aluminum, then you should replace it with one that is. You want the hose to be as short as possible to reduce the likelihood of it getting crushed and potentially starting a lint fire.

3 Ways To Prepare Your Commercial Property for a Storm

6/30/2021 (Permalink)

Flooded hallway of an office building Storm damage to a Punta Gorda, FL office

How Do Businesses Prepare For A Storm?

When strong storms sweep into Punta Gorda, FL, they can wreak havoc on your commercial property. This can be distressing, as high winds, heavy rain and flood water have the ability to cause thousands of dollars in damage to your building and its inventory. However, if you know a storm is inevitable, there are a few strategies you can use to prepare and possibly minimize the damage.

1. Back Up All Your Data

Your company’s data can be destroyed in a flash if it is stored in the basement of a flooded building. Paper archives can be especially vulnerable, so you may want to take time to move boxes or file cabinets to a safe location where the information can be transformed into electronic data and stored in the cloud. Avoid archiving information in company computers, especially those on the ground floor and vulnerable to flood water. In fact, you might be better off moving any company computers to a higher floor, if possible.

2. Remove Items From the Floor

Inventory, machinery and valuable company tools that sit at ground level can be susceptible to water damage. You may want to remove these items from the building or put them up on high, stable shelving. Heavier machinery can be lifted up onto stacked wooden pallets, which may keep them dry and unharmed during flooding.

3. Have a Restoration Plan in Place

It can be difficult to gauge how much damage your business may suffer before a flood, so it is wise to have a restoration plan in place before a disaster happens. Contact your local flood damage and mitigation service to discuss what the company’s technicians can do for you in the event that your building takes on the damage. Discuss possible services like odor cleanup and mold mitigation.

Flood water and high winds in Punta Gorda, FL, can damage your commercial building and put you in serious debt. However, careful planning and having a mitigation and restoration strategy in place may help you come through a flood with the least possible amount of damage.

3 Pitfalls of Lacking Interruption Insurance

5/25/2021 (Permalink)

Visible damage to a commercial building following a structure fire Commercial fire damage in Charlotte Park, FL.

What Is A Risk Associated With Business Interruption

A business that is unprepared for the worst-case scenario may experience instability if an unforeseen event prevents operation for days or weeks at a time. While property insurance covers damage to a structure in Charlotte Park, FL, general commercial policies do not include interruption insurance. Here are three potential pitfalls that could be experienced by business owners lacking business interruption coverage.

1. Liability for Ongoing Expenses
An owner of a business who does not have interruption insurance may have to pay for ongoing expenses after a business fire. Meeting payroll, making lease payments or keeping the utilities on may cost thousands of dollars over one or more weeks of closure.

2. Revenue Loss During Closure
A business owner may also experience a partial or total loss of revenue during closure. If it is possible to operate out of an alternative location on a temporary basis, it may be possible to get around the need to make a business interruption claim. Otherwise, making an interruption claim can offset lost income.

3. No Recourse After Shutdowns
A business owner with interruption insurance can choose whether to make a claim. If the owner decides to do so in order to offset continuing expenses or lost revenue, these costs should be covered as soon as interruption insurance kicks in after the typical 48-hour waiting period. Business owners who lack this coverage have no option but to pay all costs above and beyond fire cleaning, which is covered property damage.
Business interruption coverage may be available as a rider or endorsement to a general commercial property insurance policy for a location in Charlotte Park, FL. If these options are not available, business owners can take out a separate policy. While interruption insurance raises the total cost of insuring a business, the peace of mind these policies provide in the event of a disaster is worth the expense.

5 Ways Cities Are Reducing Flooding

5/25/2021 (Permalink)

green roof on urban building A roof covered in vegetation provides a natural rainwater absorption solution.

Flood Prevention Systems

Business owners in Pirate Harbor, FL, know that the assistance of a flood cleaning and restoration company could be an eventual situation and work to build individual flood prevention systems. Luckily, cities are beginning to fortify themselves against floodwaters. Below are five ways that are being done.

1. Enhancing Flood Warning Systems
While many factors have come into play to increase the chances of flooding, knowing the potential risk as early as possible helps people be better prepared. Modern technology is making that easier through the development of early flood warning systems, dam monitoring and enhanced global forecasting with real-time data.

2. Moving Toward Sponge Cities
While excessive rainwater may be overwhelming to a city’s infrastructure, redesigning aspects of it to collect that water provides many benefits. There is an increase in moving toward becoming a sponge city in which that extra water is carefully collected and repurposed for urban farms, refilling aquifers, and even replacing water used for flushing toilets.

3. Green Roofs
Both cities and businesses can boost flood prevention by harnessing the power of nature. A roof covered in vegetation provides a natural rainwater absorption solution. With stormwater runoff being a major player in water issues, letting the roof capture it instead of funneling it away is becoming more popular.

4. Plant Trees
While not a new concept, planting trees continues to be a top way to mitigate flood damage. Along with absorbing groundwater, their canopies act as a natural filter for the runoff by slowing water flow into the ground.

5. Drainage Designed for Sustainability
Proper drainage is key to sustainable systems. Improvements in materials, such as permeable concrete, better absorb the water and helps minimize overflow. More green spaces are another porous solution. Drainage systems are being designed to move toward grass and rain gardens instead of going over nonpermeable materials.
As times are changing, there are many more flood prevention strategies that cities are incorporating and considering. Many of them can also be done on a smaller scale to better protect your business.

3 Reasons Black Mold Keeps Invading Your Home

5/25/2021 (Permalink)

Patches of mold developing on a drywall Mold remediation in Bayshore, FL.

If you found black mold growing in your home in Bayshore, FL, and thought you had it taken care of with proper mold cleanup, you may be upset to find the fungus invading your home again. You can never remove all the mold from your home, but there are several reasons that infestations might keep returning after cleanup.

You Don't Prevent the Spread

Microscopic mold spores can get into the air during the cleanup process and spread to nearby areas, where they can settle and start to multiply again. There are steps that should be taken to help stop mold from spreading during the cleaning process:

  • Installing physical barriers
  • Using air filtration systems
  • Turning off fans, air conditioners, and heating units

You Leave Mold on Porous Surfaces
With insufficient cleaning, black mold may be left on porous surfaces where it will start to grow again. Materials such as drywall and carpeting should be removed and disposed of properly. Decorative items such as furniture or curtains might also need to be thrown out or thoroughly cleaned. Professional mold remediation using antifungal and antimicrobial treatments should be applied to any infested areas that can’t be completely removed from the home.

You Don't Stop the Source of Moisture
It is important to find and remove or repair the source of moisture creating a damp environment that encourages mold growth. Mold spores naturally exist in the air, and when they are exposed to moisture, they can quickly multiply. Excess moisture can be coming from a water leak or simply from high indoor humidity levels. A mold infestation is likely to keep returning if steps are not taken to locate and cut off the moisture source.
It is always important to have any visible black mold in your home properly cleaned, but it is just as important that these mold remediation procedures are also used to stop the mold from returning and spreading.

3 Ways To Limit Commercial Storm Damage

4/20/2021 (Permalink)

Storm damage - Solana, FL building.

Three Weather Damage Prevention Measures

Commercial storm damage can strike at any time of year. Some measures can be helpful for dealing with a winter storm or severe weather that strikes during any season. Here are three of the most effective weather damage prevention measures for buildings in Solana, FL.

1. Monitor Changing Weather Conditions
Keeping an eye on the weather forecast up to 10 days out can give building owners and managers some advance warning about upcoming storms. It is also a good idea to be aware of known severe weather seasons in the location of a commercial building. Monitoring overnight lows throughout the winter can also help owners and managers take measures to heat an area or insulate exposed plumbing to prevent a pipe break.

2. Secure or Stow Loose Items Kept Outdoors
From antennas mounted on the roof of a commercial structure down to patio furniture on the ground or decks, any items that are kept outside should be brought inside or anchored to the ground before a storm strikes. High winds can cause any items to become flying debris that could damage the nearest structure. Heavy snow or ice from a winter storm can also damage delicate components.

3. Install Commercial Storm Windows
The owners of buildings located in regions that are prone to severe weather may want to invest in storm windows. A protective layer that can be rolled down over commercial windows to provide protection from high winds can be well worth the cost. Preventative measures are easier to budget and plan ahead for than emergency storm damage restoration.
Depending on the location of a building, damage may be prone to occur during spring, summer or fall or due to a winter storm striking Solana, FL. Property and business owners should monitor weather forecasts, identify storms with the potential to damage structures and pursue immediate or long-term preventative measures.