Recent Posts

When Mold is Found at a Commercial Property

6/1/2021 (Permalink)

Whether you own or manage a commercial property, dealing with mold is problem you will likely encounter at some point. Because some mold situations can potentially present health effects to tenants, customers or employees, professional remediation is necessary.  This is where SERVPRO of Milford-Orange-Stratford can help.   As a certified mold remediation company, we are the New Haven area's mold remediation experts.

In a commercial property, the most common source of mold is due to moisture from a water intrusion caused by a slow leak (such as a leaky pipe behind a wall or slow leaking toilet in a public bathroom), or major water intrusion (such as a facility wide flood from a burst pipe) that was not properly dried out. We've encountered situations in which a tenant has not reported a leak or mold and the situation grew worse because of that. Regardless of the cause, SERVPRO of Milford-Orange-Stratford is here to help. 

When Your Business is Flooded, We are Here to Help

5/13/2021 (Permalink)

When a Hartford County area warehouse has flooding, our office staff knows that our response needs to be immediate.

Not only is the structure of your warehouse at risk, the building also holds your valuable merchandise and equipment. Yes, your losses will be covered by your insurance policy. However, damaged inventory will cause a significant loss of business continuity for most companies and present a hassle that most business owners would rather avoid!

When we arrive on scene after a water damage call at a commercial property, we come equipped to start the clean up process.

One of our property managers will walk through the structure with you to assess the damage and discuss a restoration plan that will work around your needs.  For large warehouses, SERVPRO can mobilize truck-mounted water extractors capable of removing hundreds of gallons of water in one go. Where standing water reaches a level above two inches, we can deploy gas-powered pumps that transport excess liquid to an open sewer point. 

We work to restore your structure while also protecting your business assets, whether that is your inventory, important documents, machinery or vehicles.

If necessary, our Commercial Property Restoration team will package up and relocate any of contents of your warehouse that cannot safely remain there during clean up.  Should the administrative wing of your warehouse suffer damage, priority is placed on protecting your computers, servers and important paper documents that hold valuable company information.  

Whether your property has water damage due to a flooded basement, broken sprinkler system or HVAC leak, it’s our business to help your business. 

Does Your Business Need Flood Protection?

5/13/2021 (Permalink)

Do you need flood protection for your commercial property?

If you own a commercial property on the CT shoreline, you may be concerned about flooding and for good reason. The majority of general commercial insurance policy exclude damage caused by flooding. If your insurance policy does not cover ground flooding, consider whether you may need one.  There are a number of reasons why flood insurance for your commercial property is a good idea.

  1. Is your business located on a flood plain?  The Federal Emergency Management Agency maintains flood maps that can help business owners determine whether a commercial building is located in an area prone to flooding. Most insurance providers define a flood as water damage that originates from outside water sources such as rain or rising bodies of water
  2. Are you a “better safe than sorry” business owner?  Even if you are not in a flood plain, there may be a reasonable risk of flooding at your commercial building. According to FEMA, the average flood insurance claim is approximately $33,000 and total property damage due to flooding tops $6 billion every year. Because flooding can happen, you may choose to purchase insurance “just in case”.
  3. Is your mortgage federally regulated or insured? Owners of property located in a flood zone with mortgages regulated or insured by the federal government are required to purchase and maintain flood coverage. Contact an insurance agent that offers NFIP policies or add a flood endorsement or rider to a general commercial insurance policy.
  4. Mold and Other Secondary Damage In addition to excluding flooding, most standard commercial property policies also cut out coverage for any secondary damage that results from this uncovered peril. Without a flood policy, it may be more difficult or prohibitively expensive to pursue mitigation and restoration. As a result, a structure may be prone to mold growth.

Not only can flooding at your New Haven County business cause damage that requires what can be costly restoration, it can also force you to close your doors while the work is being done.

Considering if your business requires additional flood insurance coverage now will help you later.

We go through the contents of a home on a piece by piece basis and while each item is a unique case, we do use a few factors to determine whether it gets boxed, sent to our facility for cleaning or put in the dumpster. 

The type of water that has flooded the home is an important factor in determining what stays and what goes. Clean water does not pose as much of a health hazard as potentially contaminated water does. If there is concern that water is contaminated from sewage or chemicals, we are unlikely to suggest it be cleaned. It's not worth the risk.  

Typically, porous fabrics such as mattresses, pillows, carpeting and particle board cannot be salvaged. They absorb water quickly and are breeding grounds for mold spores to grow.  However, there are cases in which we are able to clean area rugs and wood if we are called to the job quickly and the piece has not become oversaturated.  

Our ability to be on the job quickly helps us minimize damage to personal possessions that have water damage. The perfect example of this is wooden furniture. It takes quite a bit of time for it to really absorb and become completely water logged. If you get personal belongings out of the standing water and begin the drying process right away, you have a good chance of being able to save them. 

The SERVPRO of Milford-Orange-Stratford team has the experience in caring for the belongings of your Oxford area home. Experiencing damage to your home is an upsetting ordeal. We understand that it can be difficult to part with treasured items, and do our best to help save them. 

Have a Question?

5/7/2021 (Permalink)

The first person you will likely talk to when you call our office is one of our administrative assistants- Theny and Alexis, or our office manager Kathy. These ladies have heard it all in their line of work - from exploding fire extinguishers, to toy drones catching on fire to a neighbor driving their car into a house. And we won’t even go into the things that children have shoved down toilets, causing overflows of epic proportions!

Typically, though, a day in the life of one our admins usually includes phone calls with questions such as:

Will this be covered by my homeowner’s insurance?

Whether it’s mold discovered in the basement, water damage from a leaky roof or broken windows from a fallen tree limb, this is often a question we get asked. And, the answer depends on your particular policy and will need to be answered by your insurance agent. That said, the majority of homeowner insurance policies cover water damage scenarios such as water damage from broken appliances, pipe leaks, burst and frozen pipes and toilet overflows. What is typically not covered? Flooding from storm water is typically not covered on a basic homeowner’s insurance policy. Nor is mold when due to a failure to maintain a home properly. For example, if you know that you have a roof leak and don’t address the problem, mold that grows as a result may not be covered. 

I’m nervous about workers in my home - who do you hire? 

We understand that it can be stressful to have a disaster in your home and unknown people working inside of it. We employ only people who we feel comfortable allowing into our own homes and on top of that, all of our employees have undergone a background check to ensure that they are trustworthy and safe. Our Production Managers oversee the crew as well as the work being done in your home and are available to you should you have any concerns at any time during the restoration. In addition to possessing advanced knowledge in the restoration industry, our main criteria when we select someone to be a Production Manager is that they are an easily approachable, “people person” who will put our customers at ease. 

How quickly can you get here?

You’ll see that we advertise that we are open 24-7. We have a crew on call throughout the night and on weekends to respond to emergencies. When you call during the day, we will typically be at your home or business within 1.5 hours. If there has been an unusual storm that has affected thousands of people in the area, we may take a little longer and prioritize our calls based on the level of need of our customers.

What services do you provide?

SERVPRO of Milford-Orange-Stratford is a full service, start to finish restoration company. We provide water and fire damage restoration as well as mold remediation in homes and businesses. Our team is trained to clean up biohazards such as oil spills, blood, feces and animal waste. Our cleaning services include duct cleaning as well as carpet and general cleaning. And our Building Services team is licensed to repair your home - offering services such as kitchen and bathroom installations and roof replacement.  

Not sure if we can help with your unusual disaster situation? Give us a call and ask. Chances are, it won't be the first time we've heard it!

It's Our Business to Help Your Business.

4/29/2021 (Permalink)

When your business requires restoration services, we can help.  Whether your commercial property has experienced a sewage overflow, requires mold remediation or an electrical fire, we have the experience, equipment and training to keep your business back up and running.  We understand that you can’t afford to have your doors closed for long and our restoration plan is modeled with that in mind.  

Water Damage Restoration 

When it comes to water damage at commercial properties, we’ve seen it all – from coffee maker lines bursting to basement flooding. We offer 24 hour service, 7 days a week because floods don’t wait for business hours.  No matter where your business is located and no matter if you are a small privately owned business or a big box store, we have the resources and training to fix your problem.  

Fire Damage Restoration 

If your company has experienced a fire, business continuity is your primary concern.  In addition to smoke, soot and structural damage from the fire itself, most businesses that have had a fire also have extensive water damage from firefighting efforts.  As a trusted leader in fire and water damage restoration, SERVPRO of Milford-Orange-Stratford knows the ins and outs of fire damage and the extra damage that can come with it.  We have training and experience in fire and smoke restoration, odor control, upholstery and fabric cleaning as well as all aspects or water damage restoration.  

Mold Remediation 

Mold can be frightening to discover at your New Haven County business. Mold, whether from a leak or plumbing, can cause serious problems to those who enter your business, give us a call to discuss how we can manage it as we work fast to address the mold. We know how to contain mold growth while reducing the number of mold spores in the air and on surfaces. Our crew members have training as Applied Microbial Remediation Specialists as well as Applied Structural Drying.  

The SERVPRO of Milford-Orange-Stratford team has the experience, knowledge, and expertise necessary to keep your business running after a water, fire or mold disaster.  It’s our business to keep you in business.  

Why Change Your Dryer Lint Every Time?

4/21/2021 (Permalink)

Have you ever wondered if it is really necessary to empty the dryer lint filter each time you run a load?

Sure, the label on the dryer explicitly states that you should do so but products have so many precautions these days that some seem a little exaggerated and not all of us follow every warning. However, consider that the dryer in your home depends on a 4 inch metal vent to safely exhaust that hot air outdoors. This vent can easily become blocked with dryer lint, which is highly flammable (remember the old boy scout trick of using dryer lint to quick start a fire?).

According to the U.S. Fire Administration, 2,900 home clothes dryer fires are reported each year and cause an estimated 5 deaths, 100 injuries, and $35 million in property loss. The number one cause of home dryer fires is the failure to clean the dryer vent.

Safety experts advise that you clean your dryer lint filter before AND after each load. Clean any lint from inside the filter receptacle as well to remove any lint that might have passed through. In addition, use a brush to clean the vent pipe itself every 3 months. Don’t forget to vacuum behind your dryer - it’s a common place for lint build up. Inspect the exterior vent on a regular basis - broken vent flaps as well as insect and animal nests can block the exit of the hot air.

Switching the laundry from the washing machine to the dryer is an easy chore for kids to do however they are very likely to forget to empty the lint filter.  Make sure that this is stressed as an important part of the chore and double check after they've finished to make sure it's been properly done. 

If you notice that your clothes are taking longer to dry than usual, that is a sign that the flow of air is restricted in your dryer. If, after inspecting and cleaning out all of the accessible areas yourself, the problem is not resolved, we advise that you have a professional come out and find the source of the problem.

As fire damage restoration professionals, we see firsthand how devastating a house fire can be. Starting the habit of cleaning out your dryer filters and vents properly will reduce your risk of a home fire.

The Green Machines and What They Do.

4/15/2021 (Permalink)

Your Milford area business has had water damage. Perhaps a pipe has broken, a toilet overflowed or your coffee maker line sprung a leak.

You’ve called SERVPRO of Milford-Orange Stratford and have been assured that the crew is on their way to clean up the mess. After our property manager has inspected your property, work will begin based on their assessment. The crew will start to unload the trucks and begin work. While the bright green equipment is getting set up throughout your facility, you will likely wonder what all of it does.

When water damage occurs, we typically use the following equipment.

Air Mover and/or Axial Fans: Professional grade air movers and axial fans produce more air movement than a standard household fan. The higher volume of air being moved increases the rate of evaporation, helping to dry the structure as quickly as possible.

Dehumidifiers: A dehumidifier removes water vapor from the air by condensing it out against refrigerated fins. The water is stored and then periodically purged from the machine by use of plastic tubing. The tubing will generally be run so that it dumps water down a drain, such as a bath tub or sink, or sometimes out a window or door. Professional dehumidifiers pull much more vapor from the air than a household dehumidifier. In this way they are generally more efficient.

Air Scrubbers: An air scrubber might be used if your loss is a result of water classified as grey or black, which means that it came from a contaminated source or through building materials. These machines remove airborne particulates by trapping them in HEPA filters. Air Scrubbers are also used in cases where a customer has a health condition that requires the air quality be monitored.

Specialty Drying Equipment: There are a variety of different tools available to our technicians for use in specialty circumstances. For instance, a floor drying mat system allows the technician to create a vacuum system for removing moisture from hardwood floors, in order to try to dry them in place. This helps the floor dry faster, and generally gives us a better chance of saving the hardwood flooring.

If you have any questions about the equipment being used during the restoration of your commercial property, our crew chiefs and technicians are always available to explain the process and what the function of each of those machines in your building is.

We understand that our customers are not experts in water damage restoration. When you have water damage, we are here to help restore your property quickly and efficiently.

Got Spots?

3/23/2021 (Permalink)

Many homeowners turn a blind eye when they spot a yellow stain on their ceiling. I don’t know what we are thinking when we do this - clearly the spot was caused by a leak of some sort and isn’t going to disappear.

The old adage “bad news doesn’t get better with age” comes to mind here.

We can avoid the problem by averting our eyes away from the spots on the ceiling, however the problem will likely get worse the longer it is ignored. 

Ceiling stains are typically caused by a few common scenarios. 

  1. Leaks - Even a small leak can eventually cause water damage and mold. The leak usually occurs directly above the ceiling stain. An overflowing bathtub, leaky washing machine hose or broken toilet is often the culprit. Old caulking can allow water to leak onto the floor as well. Leaky pipes also create water spots. It’s common for water to run along rafters or damaged pipes and drop onto the ceiling. This causes the pooling of water in that spot. 
  2. Ice Dam Leakage: When stains appear at ceiling corners or outside walls, the most probable cause is ice dam leakage  We’ve also seen cases where the water from ice dams has made its way across the ceiling. A good way to see if your attic is not sufficiently insulated is to inspect the nail heads for condensation. If they are rusted or their sheathing is stained, condensation is the issue.
  3. Condensation: Sometimes, the connection between an exhaust pipe and roof cap is not airtight and moisture that should be released outside condenses wildly at the joint. The water slides down to the duct bottom and falls right back out of the exhaust pipe. Water damage from condensation can also occur when an air duct is not properly insulated. 

We know that you want to ignore the problem but doing so won’t make it go away. And if you read our blogs regularly, you know that denial can lead to further water damage and mold growth.

So, take your head out of the sand and figure out what is causing that spot! In many cases, ceiling stains are caused by easily remedied problems and if addressed immediately, will cause little disruption to your life. 

Water Damage Restorations in Connecticut Places of Worship

3/10/2021 (Permalink)

Places of worship serve such a vital purpose in the New Haven community.  They not only offer community to their congregations, many serve the needs of those in need through their work in food pantries, shelters and fundraisers. When a spiritual center experiences a pipe burst or flooding, it’s vital that the water damage be cleaned up quickly and correctly with the least amount of impact on the community.   

Many of the religious centers in our area are in the beautiful old buildings which are quintessential to the small Connecticut towns that we live in. Old structures can at times present challenges in water damage restoration that requires a team that is highly trained and has the experience necessary. The SERVPRO of Milford-Orange-Stratford team has decades of experience working in Connecticut and is well versed in treating buildings that were not built in this century. Whether your structure has a small stone crawl space, unique additions that have been added on over the years or a not quite modern heating system, we’ve seen it all.  

Or perhaps your building is modern however you have valuable artifacts that require special handling, protection from water damage and restoration. Our project managers are understanding and respectful of your space and the contents in it. We have a dedicated storage facility in which we can store contents while the restoration work is being done. We also offer document and content restoration services to preserve those special items that are important to your community.  

If your place of worship has water, mold or fire damage, or perhaps is in need of a deep cleaning due to the amount of traffic it sees, give us a call today. 

SERVPRO of Milford-Orange-Stratford Teams are on the Road

3/1/2021 (Permalink)

The unprecedented cold front that hit Texas last week caused power outages across the state. The number of unheated homes in which water pipes froze and burst is staggering. There was simply too much widespread damage and not enough help. 

Due to our decades of experience restoring homes and businesses with burst pipes, the SERVPRO of Milford-Orange-Stratford team was called in to help. We have several crews working down south to help displaced families get back in their homes. (But don't worry, we continue to be staffed and ready to help our home community in Connecticut). Many of the homes are flooded, with ceilings that have collapsed and water dripping everywhere. We know how devastating this is and treat our customers and their homes with the upmost respect while we restore them. 

Winter storms and frozen pipes are a way of life here in the Milford area. Our team is trained, equipped and here to help when, and where, we are needed.