UNDER CONSTRUCTION!

Hello Everyone,

We here at Servpro would like to thank you for your frequent visits. We apologize for lacking in the updating department of educational and informative blog posts. We appreciate your patience and hope you continue to be so in the coming weeks as our site goes under construction to bring to you a whole new look.

We will, upon our return, have a series of blog posts available for you to dive into and enjoy. We will also have a new view to our website and look forward to reaching more and more of you as time marches on.

Once again, thank you for your patience and commitment in returning to us each and every day.

Sincerely,

Servpro of Laguna Beach/Dana Point/Costa Mesa/Anaheim West

Office 949-831-6201

Top 5 Reasons a water damage claim is denied.

Top 5 reasons a water damage claims are denied.

Water Damage The following is a list of the most common causes for denial that we encounter here in southern california. 1Long term damage. Most homeowners policies will cover a sudden and accidental escape of water. This can be caused by a pin hole leak in a pipe. A sink or toilet that over flows due to a stoppage in the drain or bowl. A toilet supply hose that bursts. Hot water heater that bursts. Cast iron or ABS drain line crack and other similar sudden accidental escapes of water. However, most people do not know that a small drip under the dishwasher or a leaking angle stop valve that causes damage over a long period of time is not covered by most homeowners insurance policies. These types of leaks are the most damaging because they go unnoticed for long periods of time until suddenly someone notices a musty odor, or some mold like staining. At which point its to late. The damage has been done and there is no insurance coverage. This type of denial happens more often than any of the others combined. So make it a regular routine to check those angle stops and supply lines for leaks, drips or corrosion of the pipes. After all an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure! 2. Late reporting. This goes hand in hand with long-term damage. The longer you wait to turn in a claim the more the water is eating away at the building materials and finishes of your home. Most insurance policies require that a homeowner mitigate (fancy word for try to minimize) their damages. Which means if you have wet flooring or cabinetry and decide to just wipe up the water that you can see with a towel and assume everything will be fine you may lose out on potential coverage. Water Damage can cause mold growth, wood rot and other microbial amplification. Some of the additional policy coverage for mold and bacteria amplification could no longer be available to you if you decide to wait! 3Ground or Rising water. Typically homeowners insurance does not cover flooding or ground water issues. Flooding would be caused by water outside the home steadily rising until it reaches a level high enough to enter your home. This may be caused by heavy rain fall, improper drainage or ground water issues such as a spring under the home or a neighbors over watering. Sometimes leaves get lodged in the drainage system during the fall then the heavy rains cause the water to back up into areas it shouldn’t. 4Construction Defects. Your homeowners insurance may not cover the shoddy work performed by your discount handyman. Often time in an effort to save costs on showers, plumbing fixture installations, roofing and other problems. Homeowners may select to use a handyman or a friend of the family. Everything may appear fine and even look great until you find out its leaking water or wasn’t constructed properly in the first place. This can be a difficult situation. Always use licensed, insured and bonded contractors to perform work on your home. If you think hiring a professional is expensive, try hiring an amateur. 5. No resulting damage. This sound silly right? Why would anyone report a water damage claim if they didn’t have any damage in the first place? Here in California majority of homes are a slab on grade type construction. Which means the ground (dirt) is graded, the plumbing is laid in the ground and then a concrete slab is laid right over the top of the grading (generally speaking). One of those pipes may spring a leak under the home causing water to escape under the home. Sometimes these are detected by the homeowner or occupant because of loss of water pressure or a hissing noise coming from the wall or floor. Sometimes the occupant may notice hot flooring or tile, in the case of a hot water pipe leak. The water however just dissipates into the ground, not affecting any of the building materials. When the homeowner finds out how much it is going to cost to reroute the under ground plumbing, or even jack hammer into the flooring and concrete to access and fix the leak, a call is made to the insurance company to cover those cost. In certain situations those costs may be covered. However, in order for those costs to be covered resulting damage must have occurred. What does this mean? It means that the water that escaped must have affected one or more of the building materials. (i.e. Flooring, Drywall, Framing, Cabinetry, baseboard etc.) If none of those materials are affected, then the claim may be denied. If you have any questions regarding these situation or would like and estimate for the cost of restoring you water damaged home please do not hesitate to contact SERVPRO of Laguna Beach / Dana Point / Aliso Viejo / Anaheim West for a free consultation. ServproLagunaBeach.com ServproDanaPoint.com ServproAnaheimWest.com

The Truth About Mold.

Mold Process

There’s mold everywhere!!!

No really, there is mold everywhere. Think of mold as a microscopic dandelion. It needs a food source, water and time and soon enough it releases its seeds or spores into the air in order to reproduce at other locations. These seeds or spores then stick to surfaces and when they detect water and begin to grow thus repeating the cycle. This is nature’s way of getting rid of dead cellular organisms like plants and trees.

Every environment on earth has a natural level of mold spores in the air. You are breathing them into your respiratory tract as you read this blog. So what is all the hype about? Wouldn’t it already be there? The answer is yes it is already there. It sits there waiting for water, food and time to grow. Once all those ingredients exist voila! Mold begins grow. Individual spores mature form colonies, which then become visible to the human eye. Up until then mold is invisible to the human eye. Most mold spores are from 3-20 microns. To put this into perspective the diameter of one hair on your head is about 50 microns. Even gravity doesn’t have the same affect on spores. Spores can hang in the air for hours before settling on a horizontal surface. Only to be whisked back up into the air from the breeze of a passerby.

So when does mold become a problem? Mold becomes a problem when you have water intrusion into your home or business with or without your knowledge. Even excessive humidity can be enough for mold to start to colonize. Wet organic materials such as drywall, particle board, OSB plywood, wood framing, tack strip, cabinetry, wool, leather, cotton and other cellulosic materials are the perfect food for mold. Then sprinkle a little time into the equation and there it is. Green, Black, blue, pink, purple, yellow and brown are just a few of the color’s that mold can decorate your walls with. Health concerns may arise when excessive mold grows indoors. Concerns are more likely to arise for “at risk” people, which might include immune suppressed or compromised individuals, young children and individuals with chronic inflammatory lung diseases such as asthma and severe allergies. However, anyone may experience health problems associated with exposure to mold in damp buildings. Possible health effects include: runny nose, sneezing, coughing, aggravation of asthma, sore throat or inflammation of the sinuses.

How to return mold levels back to normal. Returning the environment back to original mold levels requires the help of a mold remediation contractor and an IEP (Indoor environmental professional). Mold remediation contractors remove the mold and IEP’s test to make sure the mold remediation contractor has performed his job properly. They also create a clearance report for the building (often times referred to as a mold certificate).

Basic Steps of Mold Remediation

  1. Identify the source of the water and fix the problem.
  2. Containment of the work area.
  3. Negative air pressure and HEPA filtration.
  4. Removal and cleaning of salvageable items.
  5. Removal of affected materials. (ie. Drywall, Baseboard, cabinetry boxes etc.)
  6. Removal of double bagged & gooseneck sealed debris.
  7. Sanding and cleaning of salvageable materials. (Wood framing, concrete and other non porous materials).
  8. Cleaning of the affected and non affected areas inside of containment.
  9. HEPA vacuuming of all surfaces inside of containment.
  10. 24 hours of air scrubbing.
  11. Post remediation clearance testing to verify normal fungal ecology is present.

Warning: This work should not be performed by anyone who does not have the proper, certification, personal protective equipment (PPE), experience and  in this field.