Recent Posts

SERVPRO is Always Ready for Flood Season

6/13/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Bangor/Ellsworth specializes in storm and flood damage restoration.  Our crews are highly trained and we use specialized equipment to restore your property to its pre-storm condition.

Faster Response

Since we are locally owned and operated, we are able to respond quicker with the right resources, which is extremely important. A fast response lessens the damage, limits further damage, and reduces the restoration cost.

Resources to Handle Floods and Storms

When storms hit the Greater Bangor area, we can scale our resources to handle a large storm or flooding disaster. We can access equipment and personnel from a network of over 1,600 Franchises across the country and elite Disaster Recovery Teams that are strategically located throughout the United States.

Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today (207)947-0400

After A Flood: What To Do When Returning To Your Home

6/11/2019 (Permalink)

Floods can be extremely devastating, both to your property and mental well-being.  It can be tempting to immediately rush back into your home after the water finally recedes, but there are a number of factors that need to be considered first. A post-flood home can feature a variety of potential hazards that should be considered prior to reentry.

Gas Leaks

When first entering your home, be sure to open the doors and windows to ventilate the structure and help remove foul odors or leaking gas. Do not turn on any of the house’s lighting; instead, use a flashlight as you’re moving throughout the structure. Open flames, electrical sparks and cigarettes can cause an explosive fire if there is a gas leak. Should you discover a leak, immediately exit your home and contact your service company for assistance.

Electrical Hazards

After a severe flood, there will likely be damage to a house’s electrical system. Avoid turning on lights or operating electrical appliances. Ensure the electricity is turned off at the main panel before checking an individual circuits or equipment. If your basement is flooded, the utility company will need to disconnect the power from your house. If you absolutely must work on live circuits, don’t rely on basic rubber gloves or rubber soled footwear to protect you; only properly rated equipment is sufficient for use around electricity.

Structural Damage

Watch for falling debris and check for possible damage to floors and walls. Knock down any hanging plaster. If you are not sure of the dangers the structural damage presents, call the city building inspector or engineer.

There is a danger of foundation walls collapsing, especially if the basement is flooded. Keep an eye on the foundation walls as the water is removed. This causes a change in pressure and could cause the walls to cave in. To prevent radical changes in pressure, pump about a third of the water out each day. The water pressure needs a chance to equalize.

Drinking Water, Food Safety

Supplies from any source suspected of being affected by flood conditions may be treated by one of the following methods:

  • Mix teaspoonful of commercial laundry bleach with 2 gallons of water. Let stand five minutes before drinking.
  • Bring water to a boil for ten minutes in a clean container. Eliminate the flat taste by shaking the water in a bottle, by pouring from one container to another, or by adding a pinch of salt. If the water is from a public supply, local authorities will tell you if boiling is necessary.
  • Add five drops of tincture of iodine solution to one quart of water. Mix thoroughly and allow to stand for 30 minutes before drinking.
  • Use water purifying tablets, available in drug stores or camping equipment outlets.

Do not use fresh food that has come into contact with flood waters; it will likely be contaminated with any number of infectious agents.

Although we can't prevent floods from happening, we can certainly help with the cleanup and restoration after the waters have receded. When in need, contact SERVPRO of Bangor/Ellsworth at (207)947-0400; we're always here to help!

What To Do During Hurricane Season In Maine

6/6/2019 (Permalink)

Tropical Storm and Hurricane season is fast approaching. Although we don't typically see the full brunt of these sorts of storms in Maine, we often catch portions of them every year. Recently, the intensity, severity, and regularity of these storms have seemingly been increasing; as such general preparedness during this part of the year is always a good idea.

Here are a few tips to keep your home and family safe in the event of a Tropical Storm or Hurricane.

  • Leave low lying areas. Flooding is a real possibility with strong storms that generate high levels of rainfall.
  • Protect windows with plywood boards, or storm shutters. Strong winds and flying debris can easily lead to broken windows.
  • Secure outside objects. Unsecured objects can easily become flying debris due to high-force winds.
  • Make sure you have plenty of fuel and water. Power outages can easily occur and - depending upon the severity - can last for hours, days, or even weeks.
  • Have several days supply of food and water for each family member. Extended utility outages could necessitate the need for emergency supplies.
  • If called to evacuate, do so immediately.

While we don't often see the full power of these major storms in Maine, it's always a good idea to be prepared.

Should you suffer storm damage this Summer, contact SERVPRO of Bangor/Ellsworth at (207)947-0400!  Let us help you make it "Like it never even happened." 

Why SERVPRO: How the Water Restoration Process Works

6/2/2019 (Permalink)

Flooding and water damage events in the Greater Bangor area are often complex with numerous issues that require a knowledgeable and flexible response. Whether we’re dealing with a relatively small water cleanup scenario or a large scale event, we work quickly to assess each unique situation and isolate the damaged area. In many instances, normal operations can continue in a temporary space while we restore your facility.

Restoring Commercial Properties Presents Unique Challenges

Our professionals are trained to be mindful of legal and environmental concerns and strive to fully restore the damaged area while working within your budgetary constraints. We understand that every hour spent cleaning up is an hour of lost revenue and productivity. So when an emergency situation arises in your business, give us a call and we’ll be there fast with the help you need.

About SERVPRO of Bangor Ellsworth

SERVPRO of Bangor Ellsworth specializes in the cleanup and restoration of commercial and residential property after a water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.

Removing Smoke Odor From Your Home

5/28/2019 (Permalink)

Cooktops and ovens account for over 166,000 home fires in the US each and every year. The reasons behind these fires vary and they may not always cause extensive damage to the home, but there are still plenty of related issues.

Although many smaller fires don't result in major damage to the home, they can still create a mess through smoke, ash and fire extinguisher residue. Small fires, especially in the kitchen, can coat an entire room in smoke and ash even if they only burn for a few minutes. As a result, multiple treatment techniques and avenues must be considered and used. SERVPRO of Bangor/Ellsworth has the experience to assess the situation and develop a restoration plan, as well as the equipment and expertise to ensure the odor is properly taken care of. 
 
Even “contained” fires often require a sizable cleanup job. Ash and smoke tend to coat nearby surfaces and common household cleaning supplies typically are not capable of removing this residue. Protein fires – caused by meat that catches fire – can be extremely problematic; the odors from these sorts of fires tend to be especially strong and difficult to remove. Fortunately, SERVPRO of Bangor/Ellsworth has access to effective, specialized cleaning supplies that make short work of visible staining, streaking, and odors caused by cooking-related fires.
 
Once the visible damage and been cleaned, the scent of smoke can still linger in a room. Unfortunately, odor particles become embedded in ceilings, walls, and objects; it can be extremely difficult for a homeowner to remove the smell. Without the proper tools and equipment, eliminating the smell of smoke is virtually impossible. Just cleaning the carpet is not enough. We will often utilize use a thermal fogging machine to flush out the odors from a room, removing even the deepest smoke smells. 
 
Smoke damage isn’t simply limited to the room; objects and belongings typically suffer fire damage, as well. Carpets, rugs and other fabrics are excellent traps for ash and smoke particles. Important documents, electronics, furniture and other valuables may need restoration, as well.

Should you suffer fire damage this Summer, contact SERVPRO of Bangor/Ellsworth at (207)947-0400!  Let us help you make it "Like it never even happened."

Grilling Safety: How To Prevent Unnecessary Fires

5/24/2019 (Permalink)

Memorial Day weekend is upon us! For many homes throughout the country, this is the unofficial start of Summer...and to Grilling Season!

Americans absolutely love to cook out; three out of five households own a gas grill, which means there will be plenty of tasty meals this Summer. Unfortunately, it also means there is an increased risk of home fires, as well. An average of 8,900 home fires are caused by grilling each year and nearly half of all injuries involving grills are due to thermal burns. While many people grill year-round, July is the peak month for grill-related fires. Before you fire up the grill, follow these simple times and you will on the way to a safer Summer!

GENERAL SAFETY TIPS

  • Propane and charcoal BBQ grills should only be used outdoors.
  • The grill should be placed well away from the home, deck railings and out from under eaves and overhanging branches.
  • Keep children and pets at least three feet away from the grill area.
  • Keep your grill clean by removing grease or fat buildup from the grills and in trays below the grill.
  • Never leave your grill unattended.
  • Always make sure your gas grill lid is open before lighting it.

CHARCOAL GRILLS

  • There are several ways to get the charcoal ready to use. Charcoal chimney starters allow you to start the charcoal using newspaper as a fuel.
  • If you use a starter fluid, use only charcoal starter fluid. Never add charcoal fluid or any other flammable liquids to the fire.
  • Keep charcoal fluid out of the reach of children and away from heat sources.
  • There are also electric charcoal starters, which do not use fire. Be sure to use an extension cord for outdoor use.
  • When you are finished grilling, let the coals completely cool before disposing of them in a metal container.

PROPANE GRILLS

  • Check the gas tank hose for leaks before using it for the first time each year. Apply a light soap and water solution to the hose. A propane leak will release bubbles.
  • If your grill has a gas leak, by smell or the soapy bubble test, and there is no flame, turn off both the gas tank and the grill.
  • If the leak stops, get the grill serviced by a professional before using it again. If the leak does not stop, call the fire department.
  • If you smell gas while cooking, immediately get away from the grill and call the fire department. Do not move the grill.
  • If the flame goes out, turn the grill and gas off and wait at least five minutes before re-lighting it.

Should you suffer fire damage this Summer, contact SERVPRO of Bangor/Ellsworth at (207)947-0400!  Let us help you make it "Like it never even happened."

Will Your Roof Stand Up to a Summer Storm?

5/15/2019 (Permalink)

Everyone knows our cold, snowy, icy winters can wreak havoc on a roof. Our fast and furious summer storms, however, can be just as damaging as the worst blizzards. Summer storms often arrive quickly and with little warning, which forces most homeowners to be reactive in many cases. It is extremely important to be proactive and prepare or the strong thunderstorms that will inevitably rip through the area.

While having trees on your property brings a number of benefits, they can also lead to unexpected disasters. Trim trees located near structures. If this is not possible, consider removing or relocating them. Additionally, ensure all drains and gutters are free and clear of debris; clogs can lead to water backing up and flowing into - instead of away from - a structure.

Unfortunately, no amount of preparation can prevent all damage. As such, a thorough inspection after the weather has subsided is always a good idea. Some common issues are:

  • Debris and ponding water
  • Cuts and punctures in membranes
  • Edge metal pulled up
  • Damaged or missing siding
  • Damaged perimeter flashing
  • Damaged or missing shingles
  • Damaged or missing HVAC equipment
  • Cracks or wear on exterior walls
  • Damage to skylights or domes

Winter may deservedly carry the reputation as a dangerous season for roofs, it is important to not overlook the damage summer storms can cause.

Should you suffer storm damage this Summer, contact SERVPRO of Bangor/Ellsworth at (207)947-0400!  Let us help you make it "Like it never even happened." 

What To Do About Leaky Windows

5/9/2019 (Permalink)

The natural elements can wear down the integrity of any home. Over time, the homeowner may notice leakage around a window, which can possibly result in wood rot, mold and water damage. The longer the leak is left unaddressed, the more the repairs will cost.

Locate the Problem

Even a slow drip can mean that more water is sitting inside of the wall. Once a homeowner notices moisture trickling from a window when it rains, the first step is to carefully look at the wall around the area to find the source of the leak. However, thanks to gravity, appearances can be deceiving; liquid may pool in one place, but that place is not always the leak's origin.

Two common problem areas are the edge and the rubber seal. The gap between the edge and the surrounding wall is usually sealed with caulk. Eventually, the caulk dries out and begins to peel and chip. Like caulk, the rubber seal situated between the panes and frame can ultimately dry out, creating rips in the rubber.

Gauge the Severity of Damage

Depending on the severity of the damage, the window may need to be replaced. A replacement is usually warranted when decaying or softness is found on nearby surfaces. However, even if the surrounding surfaces seem to be structurally sound, the homeowner should not just re-caulk the gaps without getting an expert's opinion on the full extent of the damage.

SERVPRO Can Help

The specialists at SERVPRO of Bangor/Ellsworth can determine whether any ceiling tiles or drywall have sustained damage. After we assesses the situation, the restoration technician will give the homeowner the best remediation option to make the damage disappear. By acting quickly, the homeowner can prevent expensive repairs in the future. SERVPRO of Bangor/Ellsworth is always ready to help the Great Bangor Area residents solve their water damage problems.

Do you have leaky windows or other water issues? Call SERVPRO of Bangor/Ellsworth today! (207)947-0400

How to Prepare for Tornadoes in Maine

5/6/2019 (Permalink)

Tornadoes are nature's most violent storm. By definition, a tornado is a violently rotating column of air that extends from the base of the thunderstorm cloud to the ground. While they are rare in Maine when compared to other parts of the country, they can still form and be quite dangerous.

Prior to the development of a tornado, a thunderstorm typically begins to rotate. As this rotation becomes stronger, the chance that a tornado may develop also increases. Although the National Weather Service's Doppler Radar generally can not see the actual tornado, the Radar does detect rotation of the thunderstorm cloud; this gives some indication of the possibility that a tornado may be forming or has formed.

The scale used to measure tornado damage is the Enhanced Fujita scale, commonly referred to as the E-F scale. Based on scientific studies of tornado damage, the original Fujita scale was modified and the new "Enhanced Fujita Scale" was officially implemented in 2007.

  • EF-0 - Light damage (winds 65 to 85 mph)
  • EF-1 - Moderate damage (winds 86 to 110 mph)
  • EF-2 - Considerable damage (winds 111 to 135 mph)
  • EF-3 - Severe damage (winds 136 to 165 mph)
  • EF-4 - Devastating damage (winds 166 to 200 mph)
  • EF-5 - Incredible damage (winds over 200 mph)

Tornadoes and Maine:

Peak tornado activity in northern New England occurs between June and August, but tornadoes have occurred as early as May and as late as November. Most tornadoes occur between 3 and 9 pm and have an average forward speed of about 30 mph. For the 40 year period between 1950 and 1990, 74 tornadoes occurred in Maine. This is an average of about 2 tornadoes per year. During 2016 one tornado touched down in Maine.

Due to the usual short life-span of tornadoes in northern New England, there is often little, if any, advance warning.
Tornadoes in New England generally touch down and then lift off the ground very quickly. Many of the tornadoes that have occurred in the past, have occurred while severe thunderstorm warnings have been in effect. If you hear that a severe thunderstorm warning is in effect for your area, be alert for the possibility of a tornado. A low rotating cloud, large hail, and/or a load roar are all signs that may precede the touchdown of a tornado.

Here are some tornado facts and safety tips:

  • Flying debris causes most deaths and injuries in tornadoes
  • The safest place in your home during a tornado is your basement.
  • Stay away from windows.
  • Get out of vehicles or mobile homes, they offer little protection. Seek shelter in a substantial building.
  • Do NOT seek shelter under a bridge overpass. Bridge overpasses offer little, if any, protection from wind- driven debris.

Although we can't stop tornadoes or severe storm damage, we can certainly help with the cleanup and restoration after everything has calmed down. When in need, contact SERVPRO of Bangor/Ellsworth at (207)947-0400; we're always here to help!

Soot and Smoke Damage in Your Business

5/1/2019 (Permalink)

Smoke and soot is very invasive and can penetrate various cavities within the structure your business is located in, causing hidden damage and odor. Our smoke damage expertise and experience allows us to inspect and accurately assess the extent of the damage to develop a comprehensive plan of action.  

Smoke and soot facts:

  • Hot smoke migrates to cooler areas and upper levels of a structure.
  • Smoke flows around plumbing systems, seeping through the holes used by pipes to go from floor to floor.
  • The type of smoke may greatly affect the restoration process.

Different Types of Smoke

There are two different types of smoke–wet and dry. As a result, there are different types of soot residue after a fire. Before restoration begins, SERVPRO of Bangor Ellsworth will test the soot to determine which type of smoke damage occurred. The cleaning procedures will then be based on the information identified during pretesting. Here is some additional information:

Wet Smoke – Plastic and Rubber

  • Low heat, smoldering, pungent odor, sticky, smeary. Smoke webs are more difficult to clean.

Dry Smoke – Paper and Wood

  • Fast burning, high temperatures, heat rises therefore smoke rises.

Protein Fire Residue – Produced by evaporation of material rather than from a fire

  • Virtually invisible, discolors paints and varnishes, extreme pungent odor. 

Our Fire Damage Restoration Services

Since each smoke and fire damage situation is a little different, each one requires a unique solution tailored for the specific conditions.  We have the equipment, expertise, and experience to restore your fire and smoke damage.  We will also treat your family with empathy and respect and your property with care.

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call Us Today – (207) 947-0400