Recent Posts

Storm Damage? In Los Angeles? Take Steps Now to Prepare.

11/10/2020 (Permalink)

Moisture on a window. Can't wipe away the moisture on your windows? You might have a broken seal. Fix it before the rainy season arrives to prevent water damage and mold.

Anyone who lives in the Los Angeles area knows rain is an infrequent visitor to our region. But our rainy season is coming, with rainfall at its peak in December, January and February. If you get caught unprepared and find storm damage to your property, the restoration pros of SERVPRO of North Hollywood are here to help, day or night.

But it's better to prepare your property for the coming rainy season, in advance of its arrival. Here are a few tips to help you prevent storm damage before it happens.

Clean Storm Gutters & Roof

You have storm gutters on your home, in part, to divert rain water from your foundation. If full of leaves, sticks and other debris, clogged gutters and downspouts can actually cause a number of problems. First and foremost, rain water pools around your foundation, causing erosion. Water then seeps into those cracks and weak spots, flooding your basement or crawl space.

As you're cleaning out your storm gutters, take a look at your roof. If you find any leaves, dirt or debris, clear them away too. If you notice any damaged or missing shingles, fix or replace them.

When it rains, leaves and dirt become saturated with water, taking longer to dry. As with your foundation, storm water seeps through the roof, damaging shingles and the underlying rafters, joists and insulation. With enough rain, a dirty, weakened roof can lead to a water damaged ceiling.

You should also inspect your ceilings and look for signs of water damage. If you see brown water spots or peeling paint, you may already have a roof leak in need of repair.

In short, inspecting and clearing your gutters and roof can prevent more costly storm damage in the future!

Inspect Window & Door Seals

When was the last time you thought about your window and door seals? Last winter, as you wondered where that draft was coming from?

Otherwise, the caulk or weather stripping that plugs those tiny gaps between your windows and doors and their frames? Out of sight, out of mind.

But if drafts can slip through, so can moisture. While the water may be insufficient to cause a flood, mold needs little moisture to grow in those damp, dark places.

If you have multipaned windows, you should check the seal between panes. Look for moisture or fogginess on the window that you can't wipe off. Have windows with broken seals repaired or replaced by a pro, especially if under warranty.

Test Sump Pump

One of the best ways to prevent storm flooding, in your basement, crawl space or garage, is a sump pump. But the only way it can do that is if it's working. The worst time to find out your sump pump failed is in the middle of a rain storm.

Testing a sump pump is easy. All you need is about 10 minutes and a 5-gallon bucket of water. But if you don't have time or aren't sure what you're looking at, a certified, local plumber will help you.

Got Storm Damage? Call SERVPRO.

Even if you take the necessary precautions, the Los Angeles rainy season can come on surprisingly strong. Having hurricane socks and sandbags on hand, particularly if you live near wildfire burned areas, will help combat heavy rain storms.

If the worst happens and you find water damage or mold following a storm, call SERVPRO of North Hollywood at (818) 754-0050. Our certified and experienced storm damage restoration specialists are here, 24/7, to respond faster to any size disaster. We will assess the damage, extract, dry, clean and deodorize your property "Like it never even happened."

What is "Advanced" Water Damage Cleanup?

10/30/2020 (Permalink)

Industrial strength SERVPRO air movers Our fleet of industrial strength air movers speeds up the process of water evaporation to keep hardwood & drywall from warping, swelling and staining.

If your property suffers water damage, whether from a rain storm or a plumbing leak, you may be tempted to do the cleanup yourself. But effective water damage cleanup entails more than grabbing a mop and a bucket.

To ensure the most comprehensive recovery from a flood damage disaster, SERVPRO of North Hollywood uses “advanced water damage cleanup technology and techniques.” But what, exactly, does that mean?

Moisture Detection

First, sometimes you can't see all the damage. Water from flooding seeps into porous surfaces like walls or flooring. Left untreated, moisture can create perfect conditions for mold growth. Add oxygen, warmth and an organic surface like wood or drywall and voilà, you've got mold.

Hidden flood damage is no match for SERVPRO of North Hollywood. Our water damage cleanup specialists have sensitive moisture detection equipment like infrared cameras and hygrometers.

Infrared, or thermographic imaging, cameras reveal temperature differences behind walls, ceilings or floors. Areas damp or saturated with moisture read colder than nearby areas. A hygrometer measures humidity, or moisture, in the air. Combined, these devices reveal flooding damage not apparent to the naked eye.

Detecting, extracting and drying hidden water damage mitigates mold growth. These advanced restoration techniques make it less likely you'll need to call us for mold remediation services in the future!

Extraction & Drying

Finding the damage is just the first step. Removing the water and drying out the affected areas is critical to restoring your property to its preloss condition.

Sponges, towels or mops can help, of course. They can remove water on the surface. But to thoroughly clean up flood damaged property requires some more advanced technology and techniques.

Over time, moisture can warp, swell or stain wood and drywall and rust metal. Industrial strength air movers speed up evaporation, while dehumidifiers pull that excess moisture out of your ceiling, walls and floor.

During those rare Los Angeles rain storms, lack of drainage may cause flood water to build up in your basement or crawl space. Submersible pumps create powerful suction to extract gallons of standing water from those areas in seconds.

Deodorize & Disinfect

Some sources of water damage bring the risk of contaminants into your home or business. Cleaning up water from a backed up sewer, overflowing bathroom toilet or a rain storm also involves deodorizing and disinfecting the affected areas.

First, we use air scrubbers that remove contaminants from both the air and surfaces of your property. Just as humidifiers pull moisture from the air, air scrubbers pull microbes or other potentially harmful pathogens. At the same time, they release ionized oxidants to purify the air and extract odors.

We also use a variety of OSHA-approved and CDC-approved cleaning agents to disinfect surfaces and prevent bacteria, fungi or mold growth.

For Water Damage Cleanup, Call SERVPRO

A professional restoration service can handle all steps of the cleanup process. From detection and extraction to drying, cleaning, deodorizing and disinfecting, SERVPRO of North Hollywood is well-equipped to handle any size water damage emergency.

Los Angeles area homeowners, business owners or property management services can count on us for a fast response, 24/7. Call us at (818) 754-0050 to clean, repair and restore your property “Like it never even happened.”

Fire Damage Restoration: 3 Key Steps to a Fast Recovery

10/29/2020 (Permalink)

A fire damaged building. Do not reenter a fire damaged home until you have assurance from the fire department that it is structurally sound and safe to do so.

First things first: if your home or business catches fire and you cannot safely put it out, evacuate and call the fire department. You can replace possessions; you cannot replace a life. The fire damage restoration process takes a backseat to the health and safety of you, your family or your employees.

Your attention can turn to cleaning up and restoring your property to its preloss condition after extinguishing the flames. Here are three key steps to ensuring a fast recovery from residential or commercial fire damage.

1. Call Your Insurance Company

Before you do anything to clean or repair your fire damaged property, call your insurance company. Many homeowner insurance policies cover cleaning up, repairing and replacing fire damaged property, but there are often conditions or exclusions. Fortunately, the state of California currently prohibits insurers from dropping policyholders who experience wildfire damage.

Regardless, you don't want any action taken following a disaster to void your coverage. Talk to your insurance provider before beginning any fire restoration work. Knowing what your policy will, and will not, cover can help you prioritize what steps you take next.

In fact, many of the best restoration companies, including SERVPRO of North Hollywood, work with insurers to streamline the damage claim and recovery process. Tedious but important chores, like documenting itemized details of your loss into an electronic database, can expedite your claims process.

2. Secure The Building

Depending upon the extent of the damage, you may need to take steps to secure your property following a fire. Board up broken windows and doors to restrict entry and deter vandalism or looting. Roof tarps prevent further damage to your property from rain and wind.

SERVPRO of North Hollywood offers a variety of building and reconstruction services to mitigate damage and ensure an efficient clean up and restoration process.

Important: do not reenter the property until you have permission from the fire department. Even if the flames are out, firefighters need to ensure the building is structurally safe for reentry before you go inside.

3. Assess The Damage

If the damage is mild or confined to a small area, you may decide to handle some cleanup yourself. But remember that some forms of fire damage won't be obvious to an untrained eye. There may be water damage to electrical systems or sub flooring. Cleaning up residue from fire extinguishers, smoke odors, ash and soot may require specialized equipment and techniques to recover from the damage.

It is important that fire damage be properly and thoroughly cleaned up. If not, the damage can worsen over time. For example, if water isn't fully removed and dried it can foster mold growth in drywall, carpeting, upholstery or hardwood flooring. Ash and soot are acidic, so any leftover residue can degrade wood and metal surfaces.

It is also important to use the right cleaning products on the appropriate surfaces. Some products are too abrasive for certain surfaces and may do more harm than good. Other products simply aren't effective for the type or material damaged. To determine if the affected can be restored or replaced, pretesting is vital.

To be certain of a comprehensive clean up and restoration process, call SERVPRO of North Hollywood. Our experienced and certified fire restoration technicians can inspect the damage to your property. We'll then determine the best approach to clean, repair and restore your property from any size fire damage disaster.

Trust the Fire Damage Restoration Leader

SERVPRO of North Hollywood is a trusted leader in restoration services. We have helped hundreds of property owners and managers across Los Angeles clean up and restore their homes and businesses since 2007.

Recovering from a fire can feel overwhelming and emotionally exhausting. We understand the amount of stress and worry that comes with a fire damage disaster of any size, and we're here to help.

Our team of highly-trained and certified fire damage restoration specialists uses advanced cleanup technology and responds to your call 24/7. More importantly, we take pride in our teamwork, communication and professionalism. So you can feel confident that your property is good hands every step of the way!

Preventing Commercial Fire Damage: 4 Steps to Take Right Now

10/19/2020 (Permalink)

A fire damaged electrical outlet. Inspect your electrical outlets and devices regularly and look for signs of a problem, before an electrical fire strikes your business.

One of the worst things that can happen to your business is commercial fire damage. Your business will be closed for days or weeks. Fire damage restoration specialists will need to clean up soot, remove smoke odor and repair fire damaged areas. The lost revenue can be devastating.

You'll want to get your Los Angeles area business back up and running as soon as possible. And SERVPRO® of North Hollywood is here to help!

However, you're better off doing what you can to prevent a fire in the first place. Of course, it's impossible to plan for and prevent fires with 100% certainty. But there are many steps you can take to lower your risk of commercial fire damage. Here are a few to get you started.

Inspect Electrical Outlets and Devices

Wiring, lighting, cords and plugs are one of the leading causes of fire damage to both residential and commercial buildings. If you inspect your facility for workplace hazards, include a visual inspection of your electrical system.

Look for obvious problems like worn or frayed power cords, overloaded outlets or flickering lights. Listen for buzzing sounds when you flip on switches. If you spot discoloration near an outlet, carefully feel for warmth or dampness on the wall. And if you notice any burnt or smoky smells, call a trusted electrician right away.

It's also a good idea to have a professional electrician come and inspect your facility regularly. Depending on your business, a thorough inspection annually or every few years will ensure your electrical systems are up-to-date and working at peak efficiency.

Test Smoke Alarms and Fire Extinguishers

While inspection and diligence are your best first defense against fire damage to your business, smoke alarms and fire extinguishers come in a close second.

Just as you would in your home, test the smoke alarms in your business once a month. Change batteries as soon as alerted by a low battery warning or proactively once a year. And replace older smoke detectors every 10 years.

While homes may get by with a single, multipurpose fire extinguisher, your business may require multiple units that suit specific types of flammable material. Restaurants, for example, should have Class K fire extinguishers for fats and oils used in cooking. A factory might need Class D extinguishers for flammable metals.

Most importantly, you should check your fire extinguishers when you test your smoke alarms. Look for visible signs of age and verify the pressure level gauge remains above 185 psi (the green area on the gauge). Be sure you and your employees are also familiar with the PASS method of fire extinguisher use.

Prepare for Wildfires

Fire damage isn't solely an indoor concern. With wildfire season an annual worry across Los Angeles and Southern California, preparing your business for the threat is a wise investment.

The main thing you can do is to create a defensible perimeter around your facility. Clear leaves, branches and other flammable materials from the roof and gutters. Trim back brush and trees up to 100 feet (ca. 30 m) from your building.

For additional wildfire preparation tips for your business, go here.

Get READY with SERVPRO®

One purpose of a SERVPRO® Emergency READY Profile (ERP) is to mitigate damage and streamline the response to a water or fire damage disaster. But by developing a profile for your business, we can also help you prevent damage with no cost assessment of your facility.

As part of the ERP creation process, you can make an appointment to have our highly-trained and experienced restoration techs walk through your location. We'll gather information needed to complete your ERP. And we can look for problems areas and advise you on ways to prevent water, fire or mold damage to your business.

Commercial Fire Damage? Call SERVPRO®!

“Be prepared” isn't just the Boy Scouts motto. It's a mantra for every Los Angeles area business that wants to steer clear of a fire damage emergency. If disaster strikes, however, you can count on SERVPRO® of North Hollywood to be there with a fast response to any size commercial water, fire or mold damage problem. Call us at (800) 754-0050 to get your business back up and running “Like it never even happened.”

How to Prepare for a Wildfire Evacuation Order

8/26/2020 (Permalink)

Wildfire evacuation go bag items. One thing you can do to prepare for wildfire evacuation orders is to pack a "go bag" with first aid supplies, water, food, clothing and more.

Wildfire season arrived with a vengeance and the state of California is under siege. Millions of acres are burning. The fires have damaged or destroyed over 2,000 structure and seven people have lost their lives according to Cal Fire. Wildfire evacuation orders are in force in several counties. Though Los Angeles County isn't yet one of them, it is only a matter of time.

All property owners across Los Angeles should prepare now for future wildfire evacuation orders. But if you own property near wooded areas like the Angeles National Forest, Hollywood Hills or Griffith Park, be extra diligent with these steps.

Pack a “Go Bag”

Your “go bag” should include copies of important documents like insurance policies, passports and property titles or deeds. Pack non-perishable food, water and clothing to last at least three days for each family member, including pets. Don't forget a first aid kit, spare toiletries and a flashlight with extra batteries.

If there are things you can't pack in advance, make a checklist of things to grab as you leave. Your list might include electronics like phones and chargers, prescriptions and other personal care items and irreplaceable mementos.

Draw Up a Wildfire Evacuation Plan

Unless you live or work by yourself, you'll need to coordinate your wildfire evacuation plan with others. If you own a larger property, you may have multiple evacuation routes. Establish a meeting place or check in method with family members or coworkers to ensure everyone makes it out safe and sound.

You should also create a list of things to do if nearby wildfires prompt an evacuation order. These tasks include:

  • Turn off the gas at the main shutoff valve
  • Shut windows and remove flammable coverings (curtains, shades etc.)
  • Turn on lights to help firefighters with visibility
  • Gather flammable items (lawn furniture, umbrellas, welcome mats etc.) and store inside

You can find additional pre-evacuation suggestions on Cal Fire's “Ready For Wildfire” page.

Save Key Contacts or Information Sources

“Hey Siri. Call Mom.”

Many of us don't know phone numbers by heart because we store them as contacts on our phones and seldom need to dial them. Your spouse, parents, children and other family members are likely stored already. But what about your doctor, pediatrician or vet? Do you live in multiunit housing, like an apartment or condo? It may be useful to have your property manager or HOA on speed dial.

It's also important to stay informed during an emergency. Bookmark links to news sources and follow local officials like the LA County Fire Department on Twitter (@LACoFDPIO). You can sign up for wildfire text alerts through Cal Fire or emergency alerts through Notify LA.

If you own or manage property, make the fire cleanup process more efficient by creating a SERVPRO Emergency READY Profile. You can store key information in the app to send to SERVPRO in the event of fire, smoke or soot damage to your property.

Wildfire Damage? Call SERVPRO!

When wildfires force you to evacuate, the most important thing is the safety of you and your family. But your home is also important. By preparing your property for wildfires in advance of evacuation orders, you lower, but not eliminate, your risk for fire damage.

You may return home to find a soot covered roof, smoke odor permeating your furniture, flame scorched walls or water damaged carpets. If so, call SERVPRO of North Hollywood. We're faster to any size wildfire disaster.

Our team of highly-trained and experienced fire cleanup specialists can be on-site within hours. We are a trusted industry leader with the advanced restoration technology and techniques to make wildfire damage “Like it never even happened.”

In the event of a wildfire emergency, stay safe. Then call SERVPRO of North Hollywood to clean up any damage the wildfires leave behind.

Water Mitigation or Water Restoration: Is There a Difference?

8/19/2020 (Permalink)

SERVPRO North Hollywood tech placing air movers. Drying the water is only one step of the water mitigation and restoration process. Call SERVPRO as soon as you discover water damage to your property.

Here's the scenario: you've discovered water damage to your home or business. Maybe it was from a leaky faucet or a toilet overflowing. Or maybe a freak Los Angeles rain storm or an overzealous sprinkler flooded your crawl space. Whatever the cause, fast action is critical to stop the damage from getting worse or causing mold growth.

You open up Google and start searching for someone to help. But the more you scroll, the more confused you get. Water cleanup or water extraction? Water mitigation or water restoration? You find lots of promising companies. But it may not be clear what they can actually do for you as you gaze at your damaged property.

So here's a quick primer on what each of these industry terms means. That way you can compare the ways different companies might help you to best recover from a water damage emergency.

What is Water Mitigation?

Water cleanup and water extraction are both tasks that fall under the category of water mitigation. By definition, mitigation is “the process or result of making something less severe, dangerous, painful, harsh, or damaging.”

Water mitigation, then, is the process of reducing the severity of damage created by water. That process starts with assessment, where a technician inspects the damage and determines the source. Infrared readers also detect water hidden inside walls, ceilings or floors. At this stage, techs also assess the water damage category to determine if biohazard decontamination is necessary.

Following assessment, the extraction, drying and cleanup begins. Extraction, or water removal, involves using pumps or vacuums to rapidly remove surface water from hardwood or tile floors and saturated carpets or furniture.

After excess water has been removed, techs dry the affected area with air movers and dehumidifiers. And they clean and sanitize surfaces to remove mold and other contaminants and deodorize the property.

At this point, the mitigation process is complete. And, if necessary, the restoration process begins.

What is Water Restoration?

Restoration is “bringing back to a former position or condition.” This is the essence of the SERVPRO North Hollywood promise to restore damaged property “Like it never even happened.”

And it doesn't take long for water to damage your property. Moisture seeps into porous surfaces, like hardwood or laminate floors and drywall. As it does, it can cause unsightly discoloration, peeling and warping. It can foster mold growth. And, if left unaddressed, it can weaken the structural integrity of floors, walls and ceilings.

Non-porous surfaces are also at risk of water damage. Metal, glass and ceramic can all stain, while metal is susceptible to corrosion and rust.

The water restoration process may involve repairing, rebuilding or replacing affected areas. For example, consider a wall damaged by leaky plumbing. A restoration tech might need only to patch up a hole in the drywall. They may have to replace the entire panel of sheet rock. Or they might remove the entire wall, replace the pipes and framing, and reconstruct the wall.

The level of restoration depends on the extent of the water damage. This is one of the reasons it is important to have a specialist inspect and mitigate damage as soon as possible. The sooner a tech can address a problem, the less likely the need for major restoration work.

Call SERVPRO for Water Mitigation and Restoration

Not every company handles both water mitigation and water restoration. SERVPRO North Hollywood does both. Our techs are highly-trained and IICRC certified in the entire mitigation and restoration process. We also work directly with most insurance companies.

A water damage emergency can be a stressful situation for you, your family or your business. Let SERVPRO North Hollywood relieve some of that stress by handling every step of the cleanup and restoration process. Call us anytime, 24/7, for a fast response to any size water damage disaster.

Most Common Causes of House Fires (and How to Prevent Them)

8/12/2020 (Permalink)

A burning candle. Candles look and smell great. They're also the fifth leading cause of house fires. Call SERVPRO right away to mitigate damage from fire, smoke & soot.

The County of Los Angeles Fire Department responds to thousands of house fires annually, causing around $100 million in fire damage losses each year.

Suffice it to say, homeowners should try to prevent fire damage to their own home (or business). Here are the five most common causes of house fires, and tips for preventing a serious fire damage loss to your property.

Candles

Candles look and smell great. They're also a serious risk, the fifth leading cause of house fires nationwide. Avoid a fire damage disaster by following these candle safety tips:

  • Keep candles at least a foot from anything flammable
  • Use proper candle holders and place them on a flat, sturdy surface
  • Blow out candles before they burn out or before you go to sleep

Smoking

Though per capita cigarette consumption is lower than it's been in over a hundred years, over 35 million Americans still smoke. Cigarettes, cigars and pipes ignited over 17 thousand home fires nationwide in 2014.

Best way to prevent home fire damage from smoking? Quit. Otherwise, smoke outside, ensure butts and ashes are fully doused and keep lighters and matches away from children.

Electrical Fires

While only the third leading cause of house fires, electrical fires are the most costly in terms of property damage. At an annual cost of $1.4 billion, avoiding electrical fires saves both lives and money.

Always call a qualified, licensed electrician to install or repair wiring, outlets or electrical appliances. Some signs of a potential electrical problem in your home include:

  • Frequent blown fuses or tripped circuit breakers
  • Outlets that are discolored or warm to the touch
  • Flickering or dimming lights

And remember, water and electricity do not mix! If you discover water damage near an outlet or electrical appliance, call SERVPRO of North Hollywood right away. We'll help clean up the water to ensure it doesn't create a mold problem or fire risk in the future.

Space Heaters

Obviously our dry heat makes the use of space heaters infrequent here in Los Angeles. Given that space heaters are a leading cause of house fire deaths nationwide, that's a good thing!

Still, our winter nights do get cold, so you may be supplementing your source of warmth with a space heater.

If so, be sure to keep anything flammable, like blankets or clothing, at least three feet away from the unit. And turn off the heater before you turn in for the night.

Yes, it may get a little cold in your bedroom. But that's better than waking up to a blaring smoke alarm and a house fire sparked by your space heater.

Cooking

We're cooking at home more often right now, which is great way to save money. But cooking is also the leading cause of home fires. We even wrote a separate post with tips for preventing kitchen fire damage.

But the most important thing is to be vigilant and focus your attention on the oven and stove. Keep flammable materials like dish towels and pot holders away from open flames. And don't stray to far from the kitchen while you're cooking.

What to Do if You Have a House Fire

If you have a fire extinguisher handy, you could try to put out the blaze yourself. Just be sure the type of extinguisher is appropriate for the type of fire. Different fuel sources require different methods of suppression.

If you're unable to contain the flames, get to safety and call 911 right away. House fires are no joke. Your safety, and the safety of your loved ones, is the most important thing.

Once it's out, call SERVPRO of North Hollywood as soon as possible. Our fire damage restoration specialists work quickly to mitigate property damage from fire, smoke, soot and water. The sooner we're called, the sooner we can help clean up from house fires "Like it never even happened."

Think You Don't Need Water Damage Restoration? Think Again.

7/20/2020 (Permalink)

Water damage to bathroom ceiling. Paint over it? It may look better, but if the underlying source isn't fixed, this water damage may cause bigger problems in the future.

When you find water stains on your walls or ceiling, you might not think you need water damage restoration service. You might just paint over them. That dripping pipe under your sink? Stick a bucket under there. Out of sight, out of mind. Right?

Many homeowners don't think they need professional water restoration for a minor amount of damage. Maybe you think it's expensive or disruptive. Or maybe it's something you'll get around to. But minor problems can become major headaches if left unaddressed!

Here are three reasons to call SERVPRO of North Hollywood for water damage restoration if you discover water damage to your property.

Water Damage Causes Mold

Mold requires four things to grow. The first is oxygen, which is in ample supply. Second, mold needs warmth. Living in Los Angeles, warmth isn't a problem, especially during the summer.

Third, mold needs an organic surface, something that is biodegradable because it was alive. Guess what? Most of the materials in your home qualify. Wood flooring, ceiling tiles, drywall, doors, window frames... all are capable hosts for mold spores.

Last but not least, mold needs moisture. It doesn't rain much in Los Angeles, but mold doesn't need much. Just a high level of relative humidity, which is highest in Los Angeles during these summer months, is enough.

Of course, rain isn't the only source of dampness. A leaky pipe, condensation from an air conditioner or an overzealous sprinkler can provide an ample supply of moisture for mold to thrive.

Mold growth can begin within 24-48 hours. And if your home has central air, mold can also quickly spread. Mold exposure may cause health effects, so the sooner a water restoration and mold remediation tech fixes the problem, the better!

Increased Risk for Fire Damage

H2O and electricity shouldn't mix. If you find water damage to your walls, near an outlet or electrical appliances, finding, and stopping, the source of dampness is vital.

If moisture does come in contact with wiring or other electrical components, it can cause corrosion. Over time, the damage stops the outlet or appliance from working, necessitating a visit from an electrician.

Plus, water conducts electricity, which means if a human or animal comes in contact with it, they may get an electrical shock. While a shock may not be lethal, it is painful! If you or anyone in your family suffers an electrical burn, seek medical help right away.

Lastly, damp wires can cause a short circuit. While modern homes and appliances have circuit breakers or fuses to mitigate shorts, they are still a serious fire risk. According to the U.S. Fire Administration, electrical fires caused 6.3% of all residential fires between 2014 and 2016.

It Gets Worse With Time

Covering up water damage doesn't fix it. If the problem's source isn't addressed, it will get worse over time. In fact, less than 24 hours is all it takes for water to cause significant damage to your property.

Besides being an eyesore, water damage could cause structural weaknesses. In other words, that little bit of discoloration may lead to a hole in your ceiling, floor or wall. Or worse, if moisture seeps into a crawl space or basement, it can erode support beams and cause cracks in the foundation.

The average cost to repair your home's foundation is over $4,000 according to HomeAdvisor. As Benjamin Franklin once advised, "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure."

Call SERVPRO for Water Damage Restoration

Don't take the chance that a minor expense or inconvenience becomes a major problem. SERVPRO of North Hollywood is here 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to respond fast to any size water damage disaster.

Our water damage restoration techs are IICRC certified with advanced technology for moisture detection, extraction and drying. Call us to clean up and restore your property from water damage “Like it never even happened.”

What is California Doing to Prevent Wildfires This Summer?

6/3/2020 (Permalink)

Defense zones to prevent wildfire damage. One thing you can do to prevent wildfire damage is establishing defense zones around your property.

Every California summer brings with it the threat of wildfires. This summer is no different. Right now, there is a lot demanding our immediate, and understandable, attention. But we still should take steps to prevent fires from risking lives and damaging property this wildfire season.

What You Should Do to Prepare

First, we can do our part to prepare for wildfire season in Los Angeles. Create defensible perimeters around our properties by trimming overgrown trees and cleaning up dead leaves or debris. Review evacuation plans, test smoke detectors and fire extinguishers. Take precautions around BBQ grills and fire pits to keep them from sparking fires in the first place.

Businesses should also consider creating a SERVPRO Emergency READY Profile (ERP). Should a disaster occur, an ERP provides SERVPRO of North Hollywood with key information about your business. Our fire damage restoration specialists will respond quickly to mitigate and restore the damage, minimizing your costs and downtime.

Statewide Prevention Efforts

However, we can only do so much. With that in mind, Governor Gavin Newsom recently said that statewide efforts to prevent wildfires remain a priority.

“I want folks to know that we have been preparing for the upcoming wildfire season, and we’re not stepping back our efforts. We’re in fact stepping them up,” Newsom said at a press conference in May.

According to the Los Angeles Times, 2020 has already been a bad year for wildfires across California. Fires were up 60% through May, compared with the same months in 2019.

At the Cameron Park Fire Department, Newsom announced a 106-person wildfire safety commission as a division of the California Public Utilities Commission. In addition, his proposed state budget includes an additional $127 million for monitoring wildfires and other hazards.

The details on how utilities plan to mitigate wildfire risks this summer are available on the California Public Utilities Commission's website.

Wildfire Damage? Call SERVPRO!

Of course, it's unlikely we'll completely prevent wildfires this summer. Keep up with the latest info by visiting Cal Fire or following @CAL_FIRE and the L.A. County Fire Department on Twitter. And should your home or business suffer fire damage or smoke damage, SERVPRO of North Hollywood is ready to lend a hand.

Our highly-trained fire damage restoration team is here 24/7 to clean up, deodorize, repair and restore your property “like it never even happened.” Call us at (818) 754-0050. We're here to help!

What Does "Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned" Mean?

5/25/2020 (Permalink)

The Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned sign. Wherever you see this sign, you can be confident the facility was cleaned to the highest possible standard by SERVPRO certified technicians.

SERVPRO has long been an industry leader in residential and commercial cleaning and restoration. SERVPRO of North Hollywood is proud to meet or exceed those high standards for all of our Los Angeles area neighbors.

But the coronavirus pandemic had changed what it means to be clean. As local businesses begin reopening, safety remains an ongoing concern. Employees and customers must feel confident that businesses are doing everything possible to defend against spreading the virus.

Therefore, we are proud to offer a new program for Los Angeles area businesses to reassure employees and customers alike.

Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned for Businesses

Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned (CSC) is a proactive cleaning and disinfecting program for commercial facilities. It is a level that goes way beyond typical janitorial services. We clean, sanitize and disinfect to minimize harmful pathogens, including coronavirus.

Locations displaying our CSC label go through a three step process to achieve their certification.

First, we consult with the business to tailor a custom program based on several unique factors. These include the size of the facility, type of operation, foot traffic and more. Businesses are not one size fits all. Neither is our work.

Second, we thoroughly clean, sanitize and disinfect using EPA approved disinfectants. Our uniquely trained and equipped team has years of biohazard cleanup experience. We follow CDC guidance on doorknobs, light switches, keyboards, phones, desks or other high-touch surfaces.

Lastly, we certify our work and provide signage. Businesses can reassure both employees and customers that they've selected the highest standard available for their property.

Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned for Consumers

While CSC is primarily a commercial program, it is important that consumers understand what it means when entering a CSC location. After all, 40% of consumers cite store cleanliness as a top concern according to a recent Harris poll.

First, look for a date on CSC signage. You will always know the last time the facility was serviced by our SERVPRO technicians.

Second, while we clean, sanitize and disinfect to the highest possible standard, there are no disinfectants that protect against subsequent coronavirus contamination. Following hygiene and social distancing guidelines remains the best way to protect yourself and others from infection.

However, in the event of a suspected or confirmed infection, we are capable of cleaning, sanitizing and disinfecting the facility. That way employees and guests can return quickly and safely.

In short, businesses and customers can both be confident where the Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned sign is displayed. Because that means the #1 choice in clean up and restoration was there.