Imagine taking your house in your hand and pulling the roof off of it with your other hand. Then take your house, turn it upside down, and shake it. All of the items that fell to the ground are considered “contents”. The items that didn’t break when they hit the ground are likely “soft contents”. Soft contents are items like shoes, blankets, purses, luggage, sports equipment, clothing, and laundry. When a home is impacted by a fire or a flood, the soft contents in that home will require remediation and restoration.
Whether or not the soft contents within a home can be restored will depend on two factors: 1) The type of contamination they are impacted with; and 2) Most importantly, the technology available to restore the soft contents.
Ordinary washing machines and dry-cleaning equipment used by restoration dry-cleaners are typically effective at removing soils from day-to-day life. When disaster strikes and these items are impacted by heavy smoke, soot, mold, and bacteria these ordinary washing machines fall short. The result of this is that when soft contents, clothing, and textiles are impacted by heavy smoke and soot or category 2 and 3 water damage they are usually considered non-restorable, cashed out, and sent to the landfill. However, if there is a restoration company who has been certified in the use of the Esporta Wash System [referred to as an Esporta Certified Operator], these soft contents can likely be restored.
The Esporta Wash System is a patented cleaning technology that uses hydraulic pressure to force proprietary detergents and sanitizers through the items being restored. Unlike in a traditional washing machine or dry-cleaning machine where items tumble and bang around inside the wash drum – items in the Esporta Wash System can be held in place and pushed through the detergent laden water. This patented safe-hold system allows for the machine cleaning of standard laundry items as well as otherwise un-washable items such as leather shoes, purses, and even football helmets. Further, the detergents and sanitizers are actually forced through the items being cleaned, ensuring even the very center of a stuffed animal or cushion is both clean and decontaminated.
Multiple third party laboratory tests confirm the Esporta Wash System’s ability to clean and decontaminate items affected by smoke, soot, mold and even sewage to a level that is considered food grade clean. Esporta Certified Operators use adenosine triphosphate (ATP) sampling systems, a technology used in healthcare and food processing industries, to validate that homeowner’s items have been successfully decontaminated in the cleaning process.
An average of 85% of the soft contents and laundry that are considered non-restorable by restoration dry-cleaners can actually be restored by an Esporta Certified Operator. The benefits of this massive increased rate of restoration is three fold.
There is nothing closer to a person than their soft contents – both figuratively and literally. Not only do we wear them every day but they are also our most sentimentally valued items. A child’s favorite stuffed animal or blanket that they just can’t sleep without, a wedding gown, or an heirloom quilt sewn by grandma are all examples of items people commonly have in their home. With the increased restoration ability of Esporta Certified Operators, more of these items can be restored to pre-loss condition. Further, restoring more means less hassle on listing and valuating “non-restorables” while helping keep the policyholder within their policy limits and to allow policy funds for use in other areas.
Esporta Certified Operators provided faster and simpler claim settlements, reduced cost of claims, while helping insurers meet their environment sustainability goals. On average, Esporta Certified Operators restore the soft contents in less than a week. Restoration is completed using industry standard pricing [no surcharge for improved cleaning and decontamination] which typically provides an 80% savings compared to replacement. Most insurance companies have environmental sustainability goals and restoring items that would ordinarily be cashed out and sent to a landfill provides a quantifiable benefit to the environment.
Esporta Certified Operators restore significantly more soft contents than any other service provider which keeps more soft goods from being sent to the landfill. The increasing prevalence of man-made fibres such as polyester or nylon means many clothes may never biodegrade. Even the natural textiles that do biodegrade produce greenhouse gases as they do so. Dyes and chemicals from textiles are washed into water systems by rain water. An estimated 10.6 million tons of garment-related waste is generated per year. The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has shown that even state-of-the-art landfills, those with the latest technology for liners and operating methods, will eventually leak, releasing potentially hazardous chemicals from discarded items into the groundwater.
For more information, contact Neil Grant or call 800.881.7781 ext. 116
Neil Grant was born and raised in British Columbia, Canada. A graduate of the UBC School of Business, Neil is a senior account manager at Esporta Wash Systems Inc. Over the past 10 years, Neil has been helping restoration companies succeed and stand out in their marketplace through in-house soft contents, textile, and laundry restoration. In his free time, Neil loves to ski, hike, and mountain bike in the British Columbia Mountains with his wife, two children, and their dog Duke.
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