Recent Posts

Stop Water Damage Before it Even Happens

3/22/2019 (Permalink)

 Think first before you plant:

   Some plants and trees, like weeping willows, have pretty invasive roots. If you’re not careful, they’ll grow right into your sprinkler system, drainage field, pipes, and septic tanks. Plan before you plant to keep roots away from any water lines.

  Roof Gutters, Roof Gutters, Roof Gutters:

   You know it’s on your to-do list anyway, so if you can, take a safe climb up to your roof next Sunday and check out your gutters. If you’re seeing lots of leaves, birds’ nests, sticks, and whatnot up there, your gutters may not be doing the job you hired them for. And on a rainy day, a clogged gutter can send water spilling into your home’s foundation, through the roof, or down to your basement. That could cause some serious water damage! So next time you’re doing some seasonal cleaning, make sure those gutters are clean. And if your gutters are too high, be safe and get a professional to check them.

    Keep a watchful eye on your water bill:

With so many water pipes hidden behind walls and in the floors in your house, you might not know there’s a leak until the damage is done. That’s why it’s a good idea to keep a close eye on your monthly water bill. If you see it starting to creep up, or get one that’s uncommonly high, it’s a pretty good sign that you may have a leak somewhere.

    Use a drain snake instead of unclogging chemicals

No matter how crazy clean you are, from your shower to your kitchen sink, clogs are going to happen. And chances are at some point in your life you’ve used one of those powerful chemical drain cleaners to get things moving again. But as convenient as they may be, most folks don’t realize those caustic chemicals are also eating away at their pipes (and they might not be too good for you either). If you rely on them a lot, you could be setting yourself up for leaks. That’s why owning a drain snake is a good solution to clear away clogs. They’re pretty inexpensive, you can get them at your local hardware store, and they can cut through most any clog you’ll have without damaging pipes or making your eyes red and teary.

    Never pour grease down your sink:

You’ve probably heard this before, but you should definitely avoid pouring grease down your kitchen sink. It doesn’t matter if you flush it with hot or cold water. It can still congeal and cling to your pipes, and could still cause some serious damage and blockage.

Gross! Walking On A Wet Carpet

3/22/2019 (Permalink)

The toilet overflows, a pipe bursts, a washer overflows or you walk intoyourbasement completely flooded by rainwater. Gross!Water can seep into almost every material and cause irreversible damage. When water saturates your carpet or walls, you will need to make decisions and make them quickly! Do not waste time contemplating how to clean up the water, each hour counts when water is involved. The longer water sits in porous material, like carpet or drywall, the sooner bacteria and microbial growth begins to grow.

One of the prime locations for microbial growth to spread is in a humid room with sopping wet carpet and walls. What do you do? Grab a shop vac and suck it up? Grab a slew of towels and cover the floor while dancing on top of them, hoping they will absorb all of the water? Grab all the fans you own and try to set them in just the right places, hoping that everything will dry out in time? Go ahead and try those techniques, but you will have a huge and more costly headache to deal with in a month.

If you choose to call a restoration company, be sure to call one who has the certifications to back up their work.

We will extract the water from the affected areas and remove any wall that is not salvageable, ultimately leaving you a clean, bacteria-free slate to work with. We even have a construction division that can help you get your home back to preloss condition. Just call SERVPRO of Norwood/West Roxburyand we will walk you through the process. You will be informed and updated of the restoration/mitigation process throughout the entire job so that nothing is questionable. We are your go-to! Give us a call even if you just have a question and we will be happy to help.

Commercial Fire Alarm Systems

3/22/2019 (Permalink)

Commercial properties are held to a high level of maintenance to ensure safety of all occupants.  These buildings include:

  •  Office Buildings – including serviced offices.
  •  Industrial Buildings – warehouses, distribution centers and garages.
  •  Retail/Restaurants –  includes shopping centers, leisure facilities and pubs.
  •  Other non-residential properties such as entertainment venues, hotels, nursing homes, medical and self-storage complexes, as well as many more

Legal requirements for commercial fire alarm systems

As you can imagine, there is a lot more legislation concerning the installation, placement, testing and maintenance to regulate fire alarms in commercial premises than in residential buildings. British Standards provide guidelines that should be complied with and failure to do so is seen as a breach of a responsibility towards safety and can be punishable by law.

Fire alarms systems play such a key safety role in commercial buildings and there are a lot of lives potentially at steak. If the fire alarm systems are not sufficient then harsh penalties can be given, including hefty fines and in the case of extreme negligence, this can even result in imprisonment if lives are lost as a result of an ineffective approach to fire safety.

In addition if a fire does occur on a commercial property,  insurance policies may be voided if it can be proved that the fire alarm and smoke detectors were ineffective.  Be sure to test your alarms!!

How Does Commercial Insurance Work?

3/22/2019 (Permalink)

Your insurance policy will cover certain perils, which are causes of damage such as fire or theft. Coverages included in your policy are called inclusions, whereas perils not covered in your policy are called exclusions. It’s important to know what is covered in your policy and what is not covered.

Here are some of the primary items covered in a commercial property insurance policy due to loss from a covered peril:

  • The building, owned or leased
  • Business equipment loss
  • Damage or loss due to wind, hail, fire or theft
  • Accidental damage of property
  • Business Interruption (lost business income)
  • Electronic data
  • Interruption of computer operations
  • Valuable papers and records
  • Forgery or alteration
  • Accounts receivable

Of the covered items in a commercial property insurance policy, the most important items to cover are the building and the business’ assets contained within it. Business interruption, which covers a loss of income when your business is forced to suspend operations due to a covered event, is also necessary coverage in the property insurance policy.

For more information, reach out to your local insurance provider.

SERVice Above The Rest!

3/20/2019 (Permalink)

Effective training is the best way to help ensure your customers receive the service they deserve. We are trained to IICRC standards in Fire and Water Cleanup and Restoration. In addition, continuing education classes are available to Franchise Professionals and Insurance Clients at our state of the art IICRC Approved Training Facility.

Vendor Qualification Compliance and Professionalism

If you call SERVPRO, we will use only qualified vendors to service your customer. That commitment resulted in:

  • A National Call Center to achieve prompt handling of the claim.
  • Implementation of best practices and job process programs.
  • National Accounts qualification criteria and annual compliance checks.
  • Crew and vehicle standards.
  • Insurance requirements.
  • File documentation requirements.
  • Quality assurance program.

Serving Adjusters and Their Clients

SERVPRO of Norwood/West Roxbury's job is to reassure the customer, perform quality service and to report to you quickly. We know your job is to interpret the policy and adjust the claim... and not to deal with problems from vendors! Working together we strive to save you time so you can focus on priority files, while having complete control of every loss you are assigned. 24-hour emergency response, damage mitigation, loss assessment, and an electronic file are available to you within hours. SERVPRO of Norwood/West Roxbury's documented, measured performance increases value to you and your shareholders, managers and customers.

Hard-earned results have made SERVPRO leaders in the fire and water cleanup and restoration industry. The SERVPRO System is geared to achieve customer satisfaction and mitigation results, adding to your company’s competitive advantage.

Why SERVPRO is the Restoration Company To Call

3/20/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Norwood/West Roxbury understands your situation. As an agent or adjuster, you have a responsibility to keep claims costs down while still providing the best services possible for your customers.

We are uniquely qualified to help. Our results create a measurable difference, giving you many competitive advantages.

Emergency Response to Claims

Restoring property is our first priority. Your customer will appreciate the immediate response and you will know everything is being done to limit the damage.

Pretesting Reduces Claims Expense

Restoring property is less expensive than replacing property. Claims Professionals know the rule is, "Restore whenever possible, replace only when necessary." SERVPRO of Newton/Wellesley makes sure pretesting is completed on every loss to determine restorability.

Claims Inventory Service

We can provide an itemized loss inventory. You will receive an Excel formatted report and pictures of important items.

Electronic Claims Information

Our Claims Information Center provides fast, accurate information you need to make sound decisions, including:

  • A Complete Electronic Job File.
    • First Notice of Loss.
    • Detailed Estimate.
    • Digital Loss Photos.
    • Scanned Forms and Paperwork.
    • All delivered by email or hard copy.
  • On-line Access to All Files.
    • New Assignments.
    • Pending Jobs.
    • Completed Jobs.
  • Informative Reports to Improve Results
    • Job Cost Data.
  • Performance Comparison to Industry Standard.

Winter is the most Common Season for House Fires

2/11/2019 (Permalink)

House fires occur during the coldest months out of the year, Winter, than in any other season. While you are enjoying being warm and cozy this winter season, please also be vigilant and smart about Fire Safety. The reason being is that heating equipment is responsible for 1 in every 7 reported home fires and 1 in every 5 home fire deaths. And although wood burning stoves give off that nice amber glow and the space heater emits warmth, be sure to keep anything that can burn at least 3 feet from any heat source like fireplaces, wood stoves, radiators or space heaters.

Many homeowners have invested in generators for those winter blizzards that threaten us to lose power. Generators are great at giving us light, keeping us warm and refrigerating our perishable food. However it is so important to keep portable generators outside, away from windows, and as far away as possible from your home. Carbon Monoxide detectors are just as important as your smoke detectors. Test your carbon monoxide alarms at least once a month. To avoid electrical fires, plug only 1 heat-producing appliance (such as a space heater) into an electrical outlet at a time. Always have a qualified professional clean and inspect your chimney and vents every year! And any remaining ashes that have been cooled should always be stored in tightly covered metal container, and kept outside at least 10 feet from your home and any nearby buildings.

By following these simple rules will help keep your loved ones and home safe and warm during the coldest days of the year.

Home Fire Sprinklers can Dramatically Reduce Heat, Flames, and Smoke

2/11/2019 (Permalink)

When properly installed and maintained, fire sprinklers help save lives.

Fire sprinklers have been around for more than a century, protecting commercial and industrial properties and public buildings. What many people don't realize is that the same life-saving technology is also available for homes, where roughly 80 percent of all civilian fire deaths occur.

The National Fire Protection Association’s (NFPA) Fire Sprinkler Initiative outlines proven, effective ways that home fire sprinkler advocates can communicate the impact of sprinklers to their decision makers. NFPA’s Fire Sprinkler Initiative highlights key research underscoring how fire sprinklers can reduce the risk of death or injury from fire. According to NFPA's "U.S. Experience with Sprinklers" report: 

  • the civilian death rate was 81 percent lower in homes with fire sprinklers than in homes without them
  • the average firefighter injury rate was nearly 80 percent lower when fire sprinklers were present during fires
  • when sprinklers were present, fires were kept to the room of origin 97 percent of the time
  • the home fire death rate was 90 percent lower when fire sprinklers and hardwired smoke alarms were present. By comparison, this death rate is only 18 percent lower when battery-powered smoke alarms are present but automatic extinguishing systems weren't

Smoke Alarms Saves Lives.

2/11/2019 (Permalink)

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. 

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.
  • Today’s smoke alarms will be more technologically advanced to respond to a multitude of fire conditions, yet mitigate false alarms.
  • When a smoke alarm sounds, get outside and stay outside.
  • Replace all smoke alarms in your home every 10 years.

How to Prevent Commercial Fire Sprinklers from Freezing

2/5/2019 (Permalink)

Mineral fiber insulation is one of the primary ways to reduce the risk of sprinkler system from freezing. Although insulation alone may not prevent freezing when temperatures are cold enough for an extended period, properly installed insulation can significantly reduce the chance of sprinkler systems freezing.

A basic knowledge of heat flow will make clear how insulation is used to reduce the chance of sprinkler pipes freezing, according to the Insulation Institute.

How Heat Flow Works

Heat moves from warm areas to cold areas, and insulation slows the flow of heat. Insulation does not stop heat flow, so it is important that the pipes are installed in areas within or close to the heated part of the building and insulation is placed between the sprinkler system pipes and the colder outside.

Insulation’s property to slow heat flow is expressed as R-value. The greater the R-value the greater the ability to slow heat flow. It is important that the heating system remains on to supply heat to the building. If the heating system fails and the temperature goes below freezing for a long enough time the heat in the water will move to the colder areas and the pipes may freeze.

Another strategy to reduce the chance of pipes freezing is to use “heat tracing,” which is a flexible electric resistance heating element typically controlled by a thermostat, which is wrapped around the pipe to supply heat when needed, but this will not help when the electric power is out.

Options for Using Insulation to Reduce Freezing

Properly installed mineral fiber insulation is a practical method to reduce the chance of wet pipe systems (or those that always contain water) from freezing. Below are illustrations to show some possible designs for insulation systems for fire sprinkler systems which contain water. Note there are many other acceptable systems which will reduce the chance of sprinkler systems freezing and the systems shown are not guaranteed to prevent pipes from freezing.