Recent Posts

What is a Certified Industrial Hygienist?

3/25/2020 (Permalink)

Plastic covers, mold containment concept Mold cleaning is the process of getting mold and mildew under control in a home

The American Board of Industrial Hygiene is an agency that establishes and administers the certifications for certified industrial hygienists. These individuals are trained to protect homes and businesses from chemical, physical, biological and ergonomic threats. They are essential to the process of mold cleaning since they have the ability to accurately identify mold in a home. This is critical since different types and strains of mold and mildew respond to different treatment procedures. A rigorous process of learning is needed to be granted the CIH designation, and continuous learning is required to maintain the certification. To receive the certification, individuals must pass a test showing sufficient knowledge in a range of areas.

What Does a CIH Do?

One of the most important tasks of a CIH is to test the environment for hazards. This is a crucial role for mold remediation. In part, this helps technicians determine if there is a threat to human health. They also recommend ways to alleviate or mitigate the threat. Some technicians may specialize in certain areas, such as mold damage control. Overall knowledge of the following areas is common for a CIH:

  • Toxicology
  • Biohazards
  • Biostatistics and epidemiology
  • Health risk analysis
  • Radiation
  • Air sampling and instrumentation

Mold cleaning is the process of getting mold and mildew under control in a home. It is accomplished by such steps as air filtration, vacuuming, cleaning and sanitizing and restoration of materials.

How Does Mold Remediation Work?

A mold mitigation team consists of several workers who are trained in treating a mold problem. A CIH might be a part of this staff. One of the first steps is identifying the problem and looking for areas of the home that have excess moisture. Too much humidity in a home in Zachary, LA, allows mold to flourish. With professional mold cleaning, a home can be restored and cleaned so that mold is no longer a problem.

Commercial Storm Insurance Coverage Often Has Considerable and Surprising Gaps

3/6/2020 (Permalink)

Hurricane Maria makes landfall in Puerto Rico in September 2017 - Elements of this image furnished by NASA In a major hurricane, a federal disaster declaration may be made

Excluding small, single-person operations, businesses in Baker, LA, are strongly advised to have adequate commercial insurance coverage. Good coverage during a catastrophe is often the difference between returning to full functionality and bankruptcy. However, there are usually significant exclusions in the policies; for instance, storm insurance may not cover every type of storm or have huge deductibles. Of course, discovering this can be a nasty surprise during or right after a major disaster.

The 3 Most Common Exclusions of Commercial Insurance

Three items that are rarely covered without a rider include

  • Floods
  • Earthquakes
  • Hurricanes

If you do have coverage, double-check the deductible since storm insurance can include higher deductibles for storm and wind damage. Earthquakes aren’t a storm, but it’s important to know that you typically need a rider on your standard policy to be covered. Hurricanes usually aren’t covered, but that does vary somewhat between different companies.

Floods Require Special Policies

Most flood insurance coverage comes from the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), a government-administered program that provides flood insurance for businesses and residences. You can find flood insurance elsewhere but rarely will find it cheaper than the NFIP.

Wind Damage Deductibles Will Also Vary

There are three basic sorts of wind deductibles: windstorm, windstorm and hail damage or hurricane. Some companies divide categories up further, and all have different premiums for the wide variety of roof types. If hurricane coverage is provided, make sure that the deductible is not higher than you expect.
In a major hurricane, a federal disaster declaration may be made. This often will bring additional advantages to commercial operations, allowing them to deduct uninsured damage caused by the declared event either in the present year or for the tax year when it normally comes around.
While exclusions and high deductibles can be an unpleasant surprise, it nevertheless is almost always recommended to purchase commercial storm insurance for most small businesses – and always for larger ones. When severe weather hits in Baker, LA, the coverage will help pay for a good restoration company to clean up the damage and return the business to its previous condition.

Saving your personal belongings post-flood

3/4/2020 (Permalink)

Flooded street in front of several houses. Knowledgeable experts can provide drying and dehumidifying equipment and bring in a workforce to assist with cleanup efforts.

Clean up after a flood is different than any other type of cleaning. If your home has been hit by a storm, hurricane, or levy break, you know it can be a nightmare. Sifting through personal possessions soaked in filthy black water can be difficult, and while the items may be filled with memories, they can also now carry contaminants. Once content cleaning begins, it can be difficult to know what can be saved and what needs to be discarded. Here are a few simple rules for cleaning up after a deluge.

1. If an item can soak up water, think of it like a sponge filled with potential toxins. This includes clothing, bedding, carpets, and couches.

2. Nonporous surfaces can often be cleaned with a disinfectant. Special care should be taken to remove any possibility of mold or mildew growth.

3. If two surfaces touch on a nonporous item, the possibility of mold or mildew rises astronomically. Think oil paintings in frames, handles on metal cabinets, and plastic drawer bins.

4. Textiles can often be salvaged if they can be washed and dried within 48 hours. There are exceptions to fabric content cleaning, however. It is not recommended that wool, leather, and silk items be washed. Often, wool can shrink, the leather may crack or lose its shape, and silk can become brittle after being in a dryer.

5. If you have access to a working bathtub immediately after a flood, you can often save nonporous objects. Soak small items of metal, plastic, or other manufactured materials in a disinfecting solution until you have time to deal with them.

6. Freeze damaged heirloom books, framed pictures, or important papers in plastic bags. This may allow more time to contemplate conservation efforts such as photocopying.

Consider contacting a flood restoration specialist team in Baton Rouge, LA, to help with content cleaning and item removal after a saturating water disaster. Knowledgeable experts can provide drying and dehumidifying equipment and bring in a workforce to assist with cleanup efforts.

How To Fix Common Types of Faucets

2/28/2020 (Permalink)

Leaking faucet After repairing a leaking faucet, check for water damage

Use This Guide To Identify The Type Of Faucet You Have

The incessant drip-drip-drip of a leaking faucet can be more than just an annoyance. A neglected leak can lead to high water bills and even water damage. To protect your Baton Rouge, LA, home, make sure to address a dripping faucet as soon as you can. There are four main types of faucets and here you can learn how to repair two of the main types. Use this guide to identify the type of faucet you have and to find the tools you need to repair it.

1. Fixing a ceramic-disk faucet
A ceramic-disk faucet contains a ceramic cylinder inside its stem, at the base of its arm. Start by unscrewing the handle and finding the escutcheon, which is generally made of metal. Remove this escutcheon and also the cylinder beneath it. You should see several neoprene seals - remove them and clean them by soaking in white vinegar. If needed, you can replace the seals entirely. When you have your new or cleaned seals, reassemble the handle and slowly turn the water back on. Your leaking faucet should be fixed.

2. Fixing a cartridge faucet
A cartridge faucet contains a cartridge at its base and often has a decorative cap on its handle. Start by prying off the cap and removing the handle by moving it backward. If your faucet has a retaining clip, remove it with pliers. Pull the cartridge straight up and remove its spout. Next, locate and remove the O-rings. You can do this by snipping them or pulling them off with pliers. Grease your new O-rings with plumber's grease and install them. Finally, reassemble the handle and you should be finished.
After repairing a leaking faucet, check for water damage. A newly fixed leak may still require an inspection and expert water damage restoration if it was leaking for too long. Professionals in this industry can efficiently detect hidden moisture and return your home to a clean, safe state.

How Professional Content Cleaning Saves Items After a Fire

2/28/2020 (Permalink)

Hole on roof and burned A house fire in Baker, LA, leaves a path of destruction

A house fire in Baker, LA, leaves a path of destruction. The flames burn just about everything in their path, from wood and furniture to clothing and artwork. Substances from fire extinguishers and sprinkler systems degrade and corrode personal belongings. Finally, the pervasiveness of smoke odors is a difficult smell to remove from the home. Fortunately, a trained and certified fire remediation company has tools such as dry-cleaning that can save many valuables from being a total loss. Some items are not salvageable after a fire, but a professional company will strive to save many possessions from being discarded.

The Importance of Training and Certification

After a fire, content cleaning can be a big job. Fire and water damage specialists should respond with a restore versus replace mentality. This limits losses and reduces expenses. Cleaning a variety of surfaces requires training and certification, allowing for the cleaning of the following items:

  • Documents
  • Upholstery
  • Furniture
  • Artwork
  • Carpeting
  • Drywall

Trained personnel know that dry-cleaning is the preferred method for clothes, while ultrasonic methods work best for non-porous objects. The right company has specialized equipment to restore a multitude of materials.

The Value of Experience
Just about every residential fire is unique and comes with its own set of challenges. Experience helps technicians understand the best methods to proceed. At times, family heirlooms and treasured photographs suffer damage from smoke or water. A company that is local can respond quickly to limit losses and begin to address the situation in a matter of hours. At the same time, a company that has corporate resources can capitalize upon its expertise and also provide space for content storage if needed.
While a fire is an unfortunate and emotional event for all, it's good to know help is nearby. Techniques such as dry-cleaning and ultrasonic cleaning improve the benefits of the recovery process and save valuable personal belongings.

What to Expect When an Insurance Adjuster Visits Your Home

2/26/2020 (Permalink)

Flooded bathroom area. A visit from a home adjuster is a very standard part of the process of restoring your home after a flood.

After a residential flood, your home and belongings may be left damaged or completely destroyed. If you have a home insurance policy that covers flood damage, your insurer may wish to send a home adjuster for a visit to your residence. If you have never filed a flood insurance claim before, you may be left wondering what to expect from the insurance adjuster's visit. Watch for the following procedural steps to take place when your local Baton Rouge, LA, adjuster comes to access the situation.

Inventory Review
In preparation for a visit from a home adjuster, you may wish to prepare an inventory of what was ruined in the flooding incident. An adjuster is trying to get the most accurate estimate of how much it will cost to repair or replace your belongings. In addition to a written list of destroyed goods, consider adding the following items to your inventory:

Photos of damaged belongings
Original purchase receipts
Videos to show larger areas where the damage occurred

Visual Inspection
After reviewing the written inventory, the adjuster may wish to perform a visual inspection of your home to determine it's the current condition. Not only will this allow the adjuster to get an idea of what damage has occurred, but may also help them to determine which variety of restoration services are needed for repair. You may wish to have several bids prepared to present to the adjuster; although, many adjusters will bring their own bids for you to compare.

Finally, after the adjuster reviews the written inventory of damaged goods alongside their visual inspection of your home, it will be time for them to record and report their findings. Be sure to ask the adjuster how long they expect it will take for your claims to be processed and for the restoration process to begin.

A visit from a home adjuster is a very standard part of the process of restoring your home after a flood. By knowing what to expect, and what questions to ask, you can streamline the process of returning your home to its previous condition.

5 Things Your Can Do After a Basement Flood

2/19/2020 (Permalink)

Flooded room. Flooding is an unfortunate risk of homeownership. The way to combat the risk is knowing how to act if the worst happens.

Basement flooding is an unfortunate risk of homeownership. The worst part about these floods is that they are often out of your control. However, regardless of the cause, you need to be aware of the steps you should take following this water disaster. There are at least five steps to the recovery process.

Remove water
Dry the area
Sanitize and scrub
Repair the cause
Deal with damaged items

Remove Water
The first thing you should do is call a water remediation specialist in Baton Rouge, LA, to help remove the excess water from the basement flood. While it is possible to remove water on your own, it is not advisable. Water that floods your basement can be heavily contaminated, requiring protective gear and removal processes.

Dry the Area
Next, the area affected by the flooding will need to be dried thoroughly. Cleaning companies will typically use a combination of fans, air movers and dehumidifiers. The dehumidifiers should be placed at least eight inches away from walls to be effective.

Sanitize and Scrub
Once the entire space is dry, preferably with a moisture reading of no more than 50%, it is time to clean and sanitize the space. If you hired a remediation company, then a team will scrub the entire space, ensuring the area is disinfected before moving on to repairs.

Repair the Cause
Next, the team will get to work on any necessary pipe repair or structural repair. This will include inspecting the root cause of the initial flood, which could have stemmed from failed plumbing or poor maintenance of gutters and roofing systems.

Deal with Damaged Items
Last, it is necessary to focus on any damaged items. If you were dealing with black water cleanup, then any porous items should be discarded. However, if you have important documents that got wet, then you can place them in the freezer to try and protect the integrity of the document until you can get to it. Also, there are specialized cleaners that focus on sterilizing and deep-cleaning.

Flooding is an unfortunate risk of homeownership. The way to combat the risk is knowing how to act if the worst happens.

Tips in case your home gets water damage from a storm

12/18/2019 (Permalink)

person walking through flooded street Water damage restoration is SERVPRO of Central East Baton Rouge Parish's specialty.

Storm Tips

For many homeowners in Baton Rouge, LA., severe storms can be a hassle. They can cause damage to your house that might take a lot of time and money to repair. In some cases, you might not know how to proceed if your house has been affected. Use the following storm tips to get your home back in top shape more quickly.

1. Contact Your Insurance Company

If you have experienced storm damage to your home, one of the first things that you should do is call your insurance agent. The claims process can be lengthy, so it’s better to get started sooner rather than later. Many policies have a cut-off for filing a claim as well, so if you wait too long, you might be denied.

2. Hire a Restoration Company

Something else that you should do quickly is to hire an emergency cleanup and restoration company to begin repairs on your home. When damage is left to sit, it can become worse. This will make it more difficult, time-consuming and costly to repair.

3. Document the Affected Areas

While you are waiting for your insurance adjuster to arrive, you can begin documenting the storm damage in your home. Check the house thoroughly and write down everything that has been damaged. You can give this list to your adjuster to help with the claims process. You should take pictures of everything since the insurance company will need evidence of the damage.

4. Prevent Damage From Worsening

One of the most important storm tips to remember is mitigation. This step is necessary to keep damage at a minimum. In some cases, if this is not done, your insurance claim can be denied. It can also increase the amount of time needed for repairs. Board up affected areas to keep water from spreading, and move items to a dry location.
After your home has been damaged, it can be difficult to keep your thoughts organized. You might have a lot of concerns and frustrations. However, keeping these storm tips in mind can help you get through the situation more calmly.

Commercial Water Damage Equipment

12/12/2019 (Permalink)

Commercial Water Removal

There are many instances where water possibly floods your nightclub. Sometimes a pipe breaks or sprinkler systems default and go off overnight causing water to spill into the building all night long. In other scenarios, severe weather possibly causes unwanted, indoor moisture.

The extraction process is a vital step in mitigating moisture damage. SERVPRO of Central East Baton Rouge's commercial water removal technicians always use the industry's best equipment during extraction. We implement the best procedures to complete the job in a way that does not negatively affect your nightclub.

When first arriving at an emergency water situation our team ensures the work area is safe for our technicians, your employees, and customers. We fix as many hazards in the area possible. Areas that are not safe to access are blocked off, and danger signs get posted.

Then the source of the problem gets repaired so that water is no longer pouring into the building. If the issue results from faulty sprinklers or a pipe break, a plumber gets calls and fixes the problem. If rainwater enters due to a broken or exterior wall, we board up the hole in the structure so that no more moisture enters.

Next, we begin the extraction process with either a portable or truck-mounted extractor. Portable extractors get used for places that are awkward to get into or if parking a van at your business is not possible. Portable extractors weigh 40 to 90 lbs., hold 5 to 12 gallons of wastewater, and it vacuum power has 140 inches of water lift.

Truck-mounted extractors get used for severe projects that contain much water. The van that has the extractor gets parked close to an entrance to your bar, and the vacuum hose gets pulled in for extraction. Truck-mounted extractors weigh 500 to 1,100 pounds and have storage tanks that hold from 60 to over 100 gallons of waste. The vacuum lift capabilities for these extractors are more powerful and have between 185.71 to 198.98 inches of water lift.

Sometimes we complete our extraction work during hours when your nightclub is not open so that extraction does not hinder your business operations. We sometimes extract the water one small section at a time, so part of your bar stays open. For professional help removing moisture from your place of business


11/15/2019 (Permalink)

Christmas Tree Fire Fire damage during the holiday season can be a disaster. Protect your family this season by knowing the facts.

SERVPRO of Central East Baton Rouge is here to educate the Baton Rouge community on holiday fire damage facts.

  • Nearly 47,000 fires occur during the winter holidays claiming more than 500 lives, causing more than 2,200 injuries, and costing $554 million in property damage.
  • On average, one of every 22 home fires started by Christmas trees result in death.
  • Candle fires are four times as likely to occur during the winter holidays.
  • During the winter holiday season, an average of 40 home fires per day are caused by children playing.
  • The number of home fires the American Red Cross has responded to has risen 10% since 2000.
  • Having a working smoke alarm reduces one’s chances of dying in a fire by nearly half.