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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Archived Blog Posts

3 Actions That May Be Necessary After a Fire at Your Business

7/8/2020 (Permalink)

Two SERVPRO technicians in front on a van with drying equipment. Call a restoration company in Leander, TX

3 Actions That May Be Necessary After a Fire at Your Business

When a fire impacts your Leander, TX, business, the aftermath can be difficult to endure. Smoke damage, standing water from fire hoses, and charred building materials may make cleanup feel overwhelming. While the process can be daunting, there are a few actions you can take that may put you and your business on the path to recovery.

1. Call a Restoration Service
Soot damage to your inventory, office equipment, and carpeting can be difficult to remove with everyday cleansers, so calling in a mitigation and restoration service to assist you may be an effective first step after a fire at your business. Cleaning technicians may take some information over the phone, including the size of the fire, how many floors were damaged, and whether you need restoration services for documents that were affected by soot and water.

2. Secure the Property
If a fire damaged doors and windows, you may want to board up open entryways to discourage further issues like theft and poor weather conditions, including wind and rain. Consider moving undamaged inventory and equipment to a secure location for storage until these problems are repaired and to protect them from smoke damage.

3. Meet With Cleanup Technicians
Once your smoke cleaning and restoration technicians arrive, they will likely survey the entire property and give you service options that may include the removal and replacement of damaged carpeting and other building materials, the removal of smoke odors and soot cleaning and water cleanup. Your technicians may also offer you a walkthrough of the restoration process and estimates so you can plan a repair budget before you reopen your business.
Smoke damage and other issues caused by a fire at your Leander, TX, business can be difficult to remove on your own, especially if the fire affected a large area of the property. Working with a professional cleanup company and knowing which steps to take in the aftermath of a fire may help you get back on your feet quickly.

Think Twice Before Tackling an Overflowing Toilet

6/11/2020 (Permalink)

Overflowing toilet Overflowing toilet in Cedar Creek, TX

Plumbing issues can be much more than just a hassle to deal with in your Cedar Creek, TX, property. That is especially so when it comes to a flooded toilet. While it may seem like no big problem to grab a few towels and clean it up, based on the purpose of a toilet, the water within it is considered black water. That means there are potentially harmful microbes, sewage or chemicals. If it is sewer damage causing the backup, it can be unsafe to clean without the proper tools and techniques.

Common Culprits

Overflows can happen for various reasons. The top three include:

Clogs: This is the most common culprit and is often associated with flushing items that aren’t meant to be flushed. The source of the clog can often be seen.
Leaks: Cracked basins or bowls can lead to serious leaks, which can spread beyond the bathroom. If that is the culprit, it is best to turn off the water to avoid the problem worsening.
Blockage: If there is no apparent reason why the toilet isn’t draining, there is likely sewer damage or a pipe being blocked. Since the culprit isn’t visible, a professional plumber will likely need to be called to address the issue.

Call the Experts
Although the culprits may be common, cleanup shouldn’t be considered a common task. While a sewage company should be called to address the underlying issue, a water remediation and restoration expert should be contacted to properly clean up the damage. Even if the damage seems minimal, water can quickly spread and lead to mold growth. Once that happens, colonies rapidly begin production and can begin affecting other areas of the property within days. Counting on a professional ready to help 24/7 means avoiding mold and ensuring that black water damage is properly cleaned.
If any form of sewer damage happens, count on help that is Faster to Any Size Disaster to ensure proper cleanup and peace of mind that further damage won’t happen.

Why Toilets Overflow During a Shower

6/1/2020 (Permalink)

Leakage of water from a toilet due to blockage of the pipe Toilet overflow in an Austin, TX home

A shower should be a time for relaxation. Unfortunately, the simple act of turning on a shower can have negative consequences if a residence is suffering from clogged pipes: Some people in this situation end up with nasty toilet overflow.
These backups are odorous and may damage a home's floors and walls. Routine overflows are not a sustainable situation and repairs are necessary to get a bathroom in working order.

Clean Pipes With Care

Water that travels down a shower drain enters the waste lines. If there is a blockage, then pressure backs up and releases through the first place it can, which is a toilet. SERVPRO crews are Faster to Any Size Disaster. They can locate the source of a pipe clog and restore any damage. They typically use a variety of specialized tools and products for sewage cleaning:

Snake: This accessory is also known as an auger. It is made to navigate the inside of a pipe to remove obstructions. It’s typically made from metal and about 25 feet long.
Enzyme Waste Removal Cleaner: A version of this product is available at home improvement stores. The professional formula is generally better at breaking down organic material.
Chemical Drain Cleaner: This cleaner may be corrosive to pipes and toxic to people or pets. Care should be used when considering it as an alternative to enzyme waste removal products.

Rely on Professionals
Restoration experts prepare the bathroom floor in case there's a surprise overflow — sewage cleaning can be a messy process. Most homeowners also lack the expertise and tools to complete a repair job, in addition to the obvious downside of working with sewage and other wastewater.
Austin, TX, has professionals standing by who can help. They are skilled in residential water repair and can tackle even the most stubborn pipe clogs.
Everyone should be able to take a shower in peace. The experts know how to approach sewage cleaning in order to get a bathroom back to top condition fast.

How To Keep Your Smoke Alarms in Shape

6/1/2020 (Permalink)

Changing battery to a smoke detector Remember to change batteries on a yearly basis

Learn How And When To Change Your Alarm

Smoke alarms are a cornerstone of home safety. When alarms need attention, they produce an annoying beep. It's crucial to pay attention to this signal and keep your fire alarms in good working condition. If the alarms in your Bastrop, TX, home are beeping, learn about how and when to change them below.

Changing Smoke Alarm Batteries
Smoke alarms come in many styles, so it's always best to follow the manufacturer's instructions. If you can't access these, don't panic. Most conventional smoke detectors operate in similar ways, so the method for changing a battery will be the same. Here are the basics for changing a battery and ending that piercing chirp and preventing fire damage:

  1. Remove the cover. Depending on the model, you may have to twist, hinge, or lift the alarm's cover to remove it. The main parts inside the alarm are the sensing chamber, a horn, and a battery.
  2. Replace the battery. To do this, you have to unclip the old battery and insert a new 9-volt battery in its place. Be sure to align the battery terminals correctly.
  3. Close the cover. Return the alarm cover to its locked position by snapping it shut or locking it back into its base.
  4. Test it. Find the test button on the detector and push it to ensure the battery works. The detector should beep or chirp when the button is pressed.

Timing Battery Changes
By proactively replacing your fire alarm batteries, you can avoid the bothersome beeps as well as prevent the more devastating event of a fire and ensuing smoke damage. Batteries in most detectors last about 6 months, so changing them twice yearly keeps you ahead of the issue. A helpful tip is to change them on the weekends when we switch between daylight savings and standard time. If you have a lithium battery smoke detector, you will have to replace the entire unit every 10 years.
All smoke detectors contain batteries and you should listen when they start beeping. Take care of your home's safety and regularly change your fire alarm batteries.

Austin Area Water Damage Company Resolves Water Damage Issues

5/22/2020 (Permalink)

Here to Help Here to Help

Summary: SERVPRO of Lakeway/West Lake serves the greater Austin, TX area with highly trained, well-equipped water damage specialists.

For most people, the largest lifetime purchase is a home. All disasters cannot be prevented, but attention to detail may serve to minimize the damage, as the following scenario illustrates.

The homeowner, Chris, performed his due diligence when it came to chores around the house and home maintenance. From the manicured lawn to the sculpted shrubs to the neatly outlined flower beds, the yard was immaculate. Chris made sure to clean out the gutters, pressure wash the driveway, and repaint the fencing and latticework in the flower gardens.

Inside the home, Chris was just as diligent. He inspected the supply lines to the washing machine, tightened the vent connection to the clothes dryer, and repaired any leaking faucets. Several years earlier, his dishwasher had overflowed, causing extensive water damage, so he was wary of potential water leaks.

Chris gave particular attention to the HVAC system since he knew that the Texas heat can cause a well-maintained system to produce up to twenty gallons of water a day. Like clockwork, he changed the filters monthly so that they would not clog and waste energy.

The annual accumulation of mold, algae, and mildew on the coils and in the drip pan concerned Chris. Every year, he would clean the coils with coil cleaner and pour bleach into the drip pan and down the drainpipe. When he finished, the system looked clean and worked well.

Telltale Signs of a Leak

In late August, Chris and his family noticed a musty smell in the house, especially after they had been away for a week’s vacation. Also, there was streaking and sagging in the kitchen and on the hallway ceiling leading to the back door. The sheetrock in the hallway felt damp and soft in places, and the baseboards and flooring were moist and warping. Water was leaking from somewhere. The source had to be found and stopped quickly before any more damage could occur.

Since the visible water damage involved several rooms, Chris called a local water damage specialist for assistance. An emergency call brought a highly-trained, well-equipped professional to the scene. Relying on advanced technology and years of experience, the technician traced the leak to the HVAC system. However, a visual inspection of the coils, drip pan, and drainpipe turned up nothing at the unit other than a small amount of moisture around the unit’s base. The water damage specialist urged Chris to consult an HVAC technician.

The Problem Solved

The HVAC technician asked a few questions and arrived at the answer. Chris had been using bleach and other chemicals to clean the drip pan, drain pipe, and coils. While he meant well, the chemicals had damaged the drain pan in areas that the average homeowner would not be able to see without dismantling part of the HVAC system. The bleach had degraded the ABS pipe and PVC drainpipe, which resulted in a cascade of leaks. It had been several years since a trained and experienced HVAC specialist had inspected the unit, even though Chris had been performing regular maintenance.

Solutions that Work

The HVAC specialist was able to install a makeshift solution to handle the moisture from the unit so the water damage specialists could begin the restoration process. The series of small leaks had added up to a large problem. The condensate drain system needed repairs, and continuous moisture created an environment that fostered mold growth. Insulation needed to be replaced. Sheetrock, baseboards, and flooring needed repair, restoration, or replacement. The project required many hands, much equipment, and great expense.

The SERVPRO Water Damage Solution

The core of the SERVPRO service palate is water damage restoration. Every water damage situation is different and requires a unique solution, but the general process stays the same. The steps listed below illustrate the process for the typical water damage emergency.

Step 1: Emergency Contact

Step 2: Inspection and Damage Assessment

Step 3: Water Removal/Water Extraction

Step 4: Drying and Dehumidification

Step 5: Cleaning and Repair

Step 6: Restoration

The SERVPRO professionals can handle the entire water damage restoration process.

Conclusion

The SERVPRO team of Lakeway/West Lake is proud to serve local communities, including Austin, Lakeway, West Lake Hills, and Rollingwood. Emergency 24-hour service means the team is “faster to any size disaster.” Using advanced technology and the latest equipment, the highly-trained and certified professionals can handle any size job. Providing water, fire, storm, mold, commercial, biohazard, and special cleaning, the SERVPRO team of Lakeway/West Lake is ready to serve like pros.

For more information about water damage restoration and other services, visit the SERVPRO of Lakeway/West Lake website at https://www.SERVPROlakewaywestlake.com. To speak with a local SERVPRO representative, call (512) 261-4790.

Irrigation Maintenance Tips for Your Property

5/13/2020 (Permalink)

watering lawn with sprinklers You should perform some routine irrigation maintenance

Winter is finally over, and warmer weather is just around the corner. As you prepare to turn on the underground sprinkling system at your commercial property in North Loop, TX, there are some important irrigation maintenance steps you need to follow before you flip the switch.

What To Check Before Turning On Your Sprinkler System

Slowly open the water valves. If they are opened too quickly, you can damage the valves by pushing too much pressure into each hose. The valves should be opened to the parallel position.
Check the sprinklers at each station. Look for low water pressure or water that is spraying wildly. Get those issues resolved before you begin to use the water system. The problem may be as easy as a damaged sprinkler head or as serious as a cracked pipeline. If you can’t solve the problem easily, call a professional to inspect the system.
After you are confident the sprinklers are running smoothly, reset the timers. It’s a good idea to reset them for a time when you will be onsite to ensure they don’t malfunction.
Clean dirt and debris off the weather sensors to ensure they work as expected.

How To Perform Routine Maintenance
Even after you have inspected your system at the start of the season, you should perform some routine irrigation maintenance. Sprinkler heads can be damaged by lawn mowers or foot traffic. Inspect them for cracks or other damage that can cause them to malfunction, and replace as necessary. Clean out the sprinkler nozzles to make sure they don’t become plugged with dirt or grass clippings. Water can get backed up in the system if the flow is blocked, which can cause serious sprinkler flooding.
After a long winter, you look forward to plush, green grass covering your commercial property once again. Following these smart irrigation maintenance tips will help to make that happen.

3 Things to Know About Mold

5/13/2020 (Permalink)

Black mold growth under a cabinet Mold growth under a cabinet

3 Things to Know About Mold

As a business owner or manager, you have many important tasks and responsibilities. One area that is often overlooked in commercial buildings is mold prevention. There are many misconceptions about mold but it’s important to know the facts so that you know how to prevent it from occurring in your Northwest Hills, TX building. Here are three things you need to know about black mold.

1. Types of Mold
First, it’s helpful to know that there are many different types of mold. The most common molds have complicated, scientific names such as aspergillus and cladosporium. Many people think that stachybotrys atra, or black mold, is the most common and dangerous; however, any type of mold should be treated with precaution. No matter what type of mold you find, contact a mold remediation specialist who has the tools, training, and expertise to properly handle mold.
2. Mold Growth
Mold spores are found naturally in the air. They are microscopic and cannot be eliminated. Mold doesn’t become a problem until moisture is introduced. Mold feeds on damp and dark environments which is why it’s common to find it in basements, attics, and bathrooms. Roof, window, and plumbing leaks are common water sources that provide moisture to mold. The best way to stop mold from growing is to prevent moisture from occurring.
3. Mold Remediation
It’s an incorrect statement to say that mold can be completely removed. Mold remediation is the process used to correct a mold problem. Trained professionals can work with you to find the source of your moisture problem. Once the area of mold is identified, they will work through specific steps to remediate the mold by cleaning the air, building, and belongings.
Any type of mold cleanup, including black mold, needs to be handled by professionals. By understanding that mold thrives on moisture, you can do your part to prevent it from becoming a problem.

Will Solar Panels Stand Up To Severe Weather?

5/1/2020 (Permalink)

Solar panel on a red roof Solar panels are designed to stand up to hurricane-force winds

Solar panels are designed to stand up to hurricane-force winds. When properly installed, this equipment can endure severe storms with minimal damage to the panels or mounting platform. If you have a solar power installation or are planning to install panels at a residence in Rosedale, TX, here are several guidelines regarding severe weather.

Have Panels Professionally Installed

The most common solar installation problems caused by storms involve faulty hardware. All of the following factors are associated with panel or system damage:

  • Clamp failure
  • Improper bolt size or installation
  • Improper racking support

Skilled installation is the best way to prevent panel damage. The most durable mounts may be through-bolted with bolts of the proper size, locking solutions, and lateral racking support. Professionals can recommend the right mounting method for any residence.
Don’t Cover or Dismantle Panels
When severe weather shows up on the forecast, you should be able to trust in the quality of solar power equipment. There is no need to cover or temporarily take down an installation to avoid panel damage. It is important to make sure that the surface on which panels are mounted is in good condition by scheduling regular roofing inspections, maintenance, and roof damage repairs.

Check Insurance Coverage for Damage
Panels may be covered by homeowners' insurance as a part of the structure. The most practical way to plan ahead for the effects of a storm is to confirm whether coverage includes these components and increase the limit of the policy to account for the value of a solar installation in addition to other storm damage restoration expenses.
High-quality solar panels are designed to withstand extreme weather conditions. Any panel damage that occurs may be covered by a homeowner's insurance policy. Severe storms in a particular region can expose panels to unique risks, making professional installation a good idea for homeowners in Rosedale, TX.

The 3 Pillars of Commercial Fire Preparedness

4/21/2020 (Permalink)

Smoke alarm with the phrase Vacuuming lightly Vacuuming the alarm to remove any dust that might interfere with operation

Commercial Fire Preparedness

Emergency services respond to more than one million structure fires each year. If you consider fires put out by an occupant of the property, the number is much higher. Understanding the importance of early detection, prevention and readiness may raise your level of fire preparation and minimize the fire risk in your Allandale, TX, business.

Early Detection
Working smoke alarms are your best defense against a commercial structure fire. Smoke alarms notify you loudly when smoke is present. If your alarms are malfunctioning, they may not do their job. Consider the following practices:

  • Testing each alarm monthly by pressing the reset button.
  • Vacuuming the alarm to remove any dust that might interfere with operation.
  • Installing new batteries every 6-9 months

Building codes require smoke alarms because they provide early detection, an essential part of fire preparation. Adding smoke alarm maintenance to your annual schedule is recommended.

Fire Prevention
Anticipating the potential causes of commercial fires will inform your strategy for disaster preparation. Consider evaluating your potential risk areas and eliminating them. For example, keeping your heat and dryer vents cleaned out can prevent bird’s nests or lint blockages from igniting. Having your natural gas lines inspected for leaks once per year is an important practice. Exercising caution when using space heaters, candles, and smoking implements is integral to fire preparation. It’s helpful to take a little time to identify and address these types of risks.

Fire Readiness
Readiness means being prepared to respond effectively to a fire. Keeping an adequate number of fire extinguishers in your building is strongly recommended. If you think it would be useful, you can request a consult from your local fire remediation expert. They can help you identify evacuation routes, design fire drills and help you determine the proper number and location of fire extinguishers.
The energy it takes to reduce your fire risk is minimal in comparison to the disruption and cost of recovering after fire damage. A plan that includes early detection, prevention and readiness can turn a potential disaster into a harmless close call.

6 Tips for Keeping Your Business Safe During a Thunderstorm

4/11/2020 (Permalink)

Prise multiple Upon hearing that there’s a thunderstorm warning, unplug any electronics

Follow These Tips

Thunderstorms are so common in some regions that it’s often taken for granted how dangerous they can potentially get. A thunderstorm is sometimes much more than just a rainstorm with lightning; it can present other dangers such as hail, flash flooding, high winds, and even tornadoes. So, it pays to prepare your employees and your commercial building for the worst by following these tips:

1. Construct an Emergency Preparedness Kit

Create an emergency preparedness kit that includes first aid supplies, flashlights, a battery-powered radio, and extra batteries. Also, include important documents such as commercial insurance information, employee contact information and phone numbers of emergency services or businesses you may need during or after the storm, such as storm cleanup services.

2. Unplug Electronics

Upon hearing that there’s a thunderstorm warning, unplug any electronics that aren’t necessary, especially sensitive or valuable ones. Make sure to turn off or unplug appliances such as toaster ovens that were on at the time of a power outage; they could come back on when the power comes back without you realizing it and start a fire. Also, avoid using landline phones.

3. Avoid Using Plumbing

Avoid using plumbing during a storm. Lightning can travel through plumbing making it risky to take a shower or wash dishes during a storm.

4. Clean Gutters

Keep gutters clean and maintained. This will help to prevent flooding and roof damage during a heavy rainstorm.

5. Cut Back Tree Limbs

Cut back loose or dead tree limbs or branches that are close to buildings. Tree limbs can be blown into a building or onto a roof during high winds. They can also create hazards on the ground.

6. Secure Outdoor Items

Secure outdoor items such as tables, chairs, signs and trash receptacles. Just a couple of inches of standing water can put these objects in motion and create dangers to people and property. Substantial winds can also blow them, creating dangerous flying projectiles.

If your Tarrytown, TX, building incurs damage from a heavy rainstorm or high winds, you can rely on storm damage cleanup professionals. They’ll return your building to its preloss condition as quickly as possible.

Can a Moldy Painting Be Saved?

3/26/2020 (Permalink)

brush, drawing beautiful interior over dirty image. concept Can a moldy painting be saved?

If mold is allowed to grow unchecked, it can spread throughout a home in Hyde Park, TX, and cause substantial damage. While this includes flooring and drywall, it can also include objects such as family heirlooms and valuable paintings. When it comes to mold cleaning on sensitive materials, special care must be taken. It will also likely require specialized equipment and advanced training of technicians. Both the paint itself and the material the paint is on—canvas, paper, board or some other surface—suffer from the presence of mold. With care and precision, a painting may be restored to a better condition.

Valuable and Sensitive Belongings

Each home contains items that are valuable in either an economic or an emotional sense. These objects are as varied as the people who own them and may include the following:

  • Paintings
  • Family heirlooms
  • Photographs
  • Writings
  • Antiques
  • Rare books

For the best results in mold remediation, it pays to search for an experienced mold mitigation franchise. Not only will the right company have trained technicians, it may also be able to tap into a larger pool of expertise. Depending on the material in need of restoration, and the amount of mold cleaning necessary, the techniques of air drying, freezer drying and vacuum thermal drying may be employed.

Sensitive Electrical Components

Water damage or mold damage can also affect electrical equipment such as computers and televisions. An electronics technician will know the best method to restore these items. This includes cleaning the exterior elements to prevent further corrosion or degradation. Mold cleaning involves many different situations that a cleaning crew might face. Quite often, there is water damage in combination with the presence of mold. A successful response includes eliminating the source of the moisture and removing as much of the mold spores as possible. With sensitive materials, such as paintings or electronics, additional expertise is called for.

What to Expect With Water Damage Restoration

3/24/2020 (Permalink)

Drywall removed from bathroom found water leaking on pipe causing damage to bathroom Water damage in a bathroom

What to Expect With Water Damage Restoration

Water in your home can easily create severe water damage causing serious hazards. Only drying the water may not suffice if you are up against flood damage leaving inches of water in your business. You will likely have to start with water cleanup and see what you can do from there. Here is some info about what can cause water damage, if you can remove it, and if your mitigation can help you with a water damage restoration project.

What Can Cause Water Damage?

The most common reason for water in your home is plumbing that has become dysfunctional. A small leak that is hardly noticeable can, over time, dump hundreds of gallons of water. Water cleanup to remove flood damage is another common cause of water in the home and water in a business.

Assess Your Situation

Evaluate how severe the water in your business of home is, so you will know how to plan a water damage restoration. Is this a small leak that you need to fix or is this flood damage that has left standing water in your basement? Mitigation of the situation is necessary when it comes to water cleanup if you ever want to complete a water damage restoration.

Water Removal

Removing the water in your home can be done in a couple of different ways. If you have a large amount of water from flood damage, you may need a pump it out using a water pump. For damp and wet carpets a wet/dry shop vac works very well for water cleanup. If things are just a bit damp from water damage, a mop should work pretty well to remove water and get it ready for drying.

Drying by Using Air Movement

Drying can be done by opening the windows for some air movement if the humidity is not too high. An air conditioner can help speed the drying process if you can't open the windows. A dehumidifier can be used to remove moisture from the room. Fans can be used to create air movement.

Hazards Associated With Water Damage

Water in your business or home can cause serious hazards. If the moisture is not removed, it will promote the growth and reproduction of mold and other organisms. Cleaning up as soon as the problem is noticed can find mitigation of the possible effects of water damage.

Mitigation of the terrible things that can happen to your home can be avoided if you know what to do. If you remove the standing water, dry all areas completely with devices that promote air movement, and clean everything well you should have no problem committing yourself to a water damage restoration. 

We are Cleaning Experts

3/20/2020 (Permalink)

guy spraying wall We are here to help to prevent business interruption!

SERVPRO is Here to Help during this time of need 

During this unprecedented time caused by the global pandemic of coronavirus, this is a reminder to our customers that we are specialists in cleaning services, and we adhere to the highest cleaning and sanitation standards. 

Specialized Training 

We are prepared to clean and disinfect your home or business, according to protocols set forth by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. We have years of experience in dealing with biological contaminants, and we will go beyond the scope of work that regular janitorial staff perform on a daily basis. 

The CDC encourages cleaning of high-touch surfaces such as counters, tabletops, doorknobs, light switches, bathroom fixtures, toilets, phones, keyboards, tablets and tables. Other spaces mentioned in the CDC’s guidance for commercial spaces include: 

  • Kitchen/Food Areas 
  • Bathrooms 
  • Schools/Classrooms 
  • Offices 
  • Retail Spaces 
  • Water Fountains 
  • Shelving/Racks 
  • Sales Counters 
  • Carpets and Rugs 
  • Stair Handrails 
  • Elevator Cars 
  • Playground Equipment 
  • Fitness Equipment 

Specialized Products 

The CDC recommends usage of a labeled hospital-grade disinfectant with claims against similar pathogens to the coronavirus. Multiple products in the SERVPRO product line carry the EPA-approved emerging pathogens claims. While there is currently no product tested against this particular strain of the coronavirus, we are following all guidelines as provided by the CDC and local authorities. 

Call Today for a Proactive Cleaning 

If your home or business needs deep cleaning services, call the experts today – SERVPRO of Hyde Park/ Central Austin- (512) 318-2200

Does Renters Insurance Cover Flood Damage?

3/13/2020 (Permalink)

Renters insurance form and dollars on the table. Does Renters Insurance Cover Flood Damage?

If you are a landlord and rent property in Leander, TX, it is to your advantage if your tenants obtain renters insurance. This policy covers their belongings in the case of a fire or from damage or loss of contents due to vandalism. It also has a component of liability coverage in most cases, which could come back to being a benefit for property owners. That's because the liability aspect covers accidental damages caused by a renter that spills out into other rental units that you own. While legally, tenants are responsible for this damage, if they do not have the money or insurance to pay out, you could be left holding the bag.

The Benefits of Insurance Coverage

The best situation is when both the landlord and the tenant have adequate coverage. In the case of a storm, or some other damaging event, it is common for the property owner to pay for any structural damage, while the tenant pays for damage to his or her belongings. Basic renters insurance covers the following situations:

  • Fire
  • Theft
  • Vandalism
  • Damage inflicted by a pet
  • General liability

The coverage for a renter is usually fairly inexpensive. A tenant can also purchase add-on coverage in the form of extra insurance for high-value items or coverage for such things as plumbing malfunctions that destroy contents.

The Advantage of Storm Response

Whatever your insurance coverage is as a landlord, and whatever renters insurance your tenant has, it's always a good idea to partner with a storm remediation team should disaster strike. A fast local response is critical to saving property and reducing expenses. Professionals will have the equipment needed to remove water and deal with difficult situations such as contaminated water from a flood or a sewer backup. A top company will also help you work with your insurance company to get a fair and accurate claim payout.

What Damages Are Covered by Renters Insurance

2/27/2020 (Permalink)

Renters insurance form and dollars on the table. Renters insurance is all about cushioning tenants from surprise expenses

Know What Your Policy Covers

Renters insurance is all about cushioning tenants from surprise expenses. It comes in several flavors, with each dealing with fire incidents differently. For this reason, it is essential to know what your policy covers.
Most renters insurance packages in Cedar Creek, TX cover the following situations:

  1. Personal property damage or theft
  2. Medical Payments to others
  3. Loss of use

Personal Property
Most policies cover the cost of repairing or replacing your stuff after fire damage - up to the limit of your coverage. However, some of them will offer actual cash value that will only compensate for the current price of your stuff. For example, If your TV is destroyed in a fire, you should get an exact amount to buy a new set of the same model with the first option. The second scenario will get you the depreciated market value of your old device.

Medical Payments to Others
In the unfortunate event of a fire, any third party who sustains injuries can file a compensation claim and win easily. For instance, if a delivery person breaks a wrist while evacuating your burning house, they could sue you for damages. This policy should cover all the medical expenses, allowing you to concentrate on the intricate fire restoration process.

Loss of Use
A fire usually leaves an inhabitable house when it finally dies down. Therefore, you will need to find emergency shelter for the next few days, and your renters policy should step in to pay the hotel bill. Still, it's important to discuss your limits with an agent to avoid unnecessary expenses.
Most people overlook the importance of renters insurance when they really shouldn't. The last thing you want is to cover someone else's medical bill while trying to recover from a house fire. So, you can think of it as the one thing that will protect your wallet from surprise expenses.

Restoring Your Home After Flood Damage

2/19/2020 (Permalink)

A flooded entrance of a home A flooded home in Bastrop, TX

The number of extreme storms has been trending upward in the last decade, which means homes are at increased risk of damage from flooding. If your Bastrop, TX, home has sustained flood-related damage, you are undoubtedly concerned about what cleanup and restoration will look like. Consulting a water remediation specialist is the first step in the restoration process.

Why Expert Assistance?

Floodwater is highly toxic and should not be contacted without protective gear. Water contamination is categorized using three levels. Floodwater is termed black water, or Category 3, the highest level of contamination. Floodwater, like sewage cleanup, requires fast action by restoration specialists. Here’s why:

  • Floodwater may be contaminated with toxic chemicals, sewage or other hazardous materials.
  • Serious contamination can easily be missed by an inexperienced eye.
  • Flood cleanup requires specialized safety and ventilation procedures, which are part of professional restoration protocols.
  • Water remediation professionals move quickly, minimizing the chances of secondary damage that may develop as time progresses.

If you are going to be turning over your home to restoration crews, it may help to have an idea of what to expect from the cleanup process for black water damage.

What Happens During Cleanup?

Once the floodwater has been removed, teams will begin setting up elaborate ventilation systems and removing wet items. Wet structural elements, such as drywall, may need to be replaced. Depending on the damage, you may need to be out of your home until safety and toxicity are addressed.
Restoration teams will professionally clean carpets, upholstery and other porous items, if possible. Electronics, such as computers and televisions, will be dried and restored using specialized dehumidifying processes.
Photos, documents and other paper-based products will be handled immediately as they deteriorate quickly when damaged by black water. The items will pass through a series of drying methods and then will be sanitized and pressed. Professional restoration services usually include HIPAA-certified staff to protect the confidentiality of your documents.
Dealing with Category 3 water damage can feel daunting for a homeowner. A professional water restoration service can provide timely, safe cleanup procedures with the goal of returning your home to normal as soon as possible.

Grilling Safety 101

2/4/2020 (Permalink)

a grill with flames Grill fires sometimes start because grease and other types of buildup have been left to sit on the grill’s trays and surface.

If you are a grilling enthusiast, the risk of starting a grill fire may have crossed your mind once or twice. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to ensure better security while barbequing outside in Cedar Creek,TX. You just need to learn what those steps are. Here are 3 safety tips to keep in mind when cooking with your propane or charcoal grill.

1. Grill Placement Is Important

Never place your grill too close to your house. Keeping it away from hanging branches, rails and eaves is also a very good idea. The main thing to remember is that you want to keep as many flammable objects and surfaces as far away from the grill as possible to avoid a far-reaching barbeque fire that could cause extensive damage.

2. Clean Your Grill

Clean your barbeque on a regular basis to lessen your chances of starting such a fire. You will likely be pleased to have a cleaner piece of equipment, as well.

3. Stay by the Grill

A lit barbeque should never be left unattended. Stay very close to it during the entire time that you are cooking. You also need to make sure that no children or animals come near it at any time, as they will be unable to prevent an incident and may even cause one. Any time you are not watching your grill, a fire and subsequent smoke damage can occur.

Now that you have some ideas about how you can keep your home and family safer while grilling, you can cook some barbeque favorites with an easier mind. A grill fire is not fun, but taking the right precautions allows you to avoid many disastrous accidents outside of your Cedar Creek,TX, home.

How To Lower Your Business Interruption Claim

1/29/2020 (Permalink)

Drywall removed due to pipe break Commercial mold growth due to water damage in Austin, TX

Here Are Some Tips on Lowering Your Claim

Good insurance coverage for your commercial property in Austin, TX, is an essential business expense. If flooding or some other disaster destroys your building, you may need to lean on your business interruption policy to stay afloat. You can probably keep your premiums lower, however, if you don't make large claims. Here are some tips on lowering your claim.

Quick Response

The first thing you need to do when you discover that a broken pipe has flooded a large portion of your work space is call water restoration experts. Technicians can often arrive within a few hours to start the steps of the remediation process:

  • Assessment
  • Extraction
  • Drying
  • Cleanup
  • Restoration

You may not be able to avoid an interruption to your business. Your quick response, however, can lower costs by getting the cleanup started sooner. A faster restoration can also help you avoid secondary damage such as mold that often happens when large water damage is left too long.

Interruption Plan

Having a plan for what you will do if your building is damaged by flooding can help you minimize costs. Have a contingency plan in place and streamline the transition to it. For example, if you can figure out a feasible way to let employees temporarily work from home, that can help you avoid the cost of relocation while your building is being restored. Keeping the basics of your business operational can help you continue to bring in money, thus lowering the portion of the insurance claim that covers lost revenue. It can also help you remain competitive in your field if you don't have to shut your business down completely during remediation.
Preparation and action are the keys to lowering your business interruption claim. Even if your building is compromised by flooding, you may still be able to continue the work you do if you have a flexible plan. Quick and thorough remediation help you return to business as usual as soon as possible.

Insurance Agents and the SERVPRO Claims Inventory System

1/24/2020 (Permalink)

Claim Document . Electronic mail. Vector image on white background SERVPRO can make your job easier when you access the claims inventory system

SERVPRO Can Make Your Job Easier

When disaster strikes in Northwest Hills, TX, just about everyone in the community is involved in some way. If you're an insurance agent serving this community, you may have concerns about your own home and business place, as well as the responsibility to handle an insurance claim for each of your clients. SERVPRO can make your job easier when you access the claims inventory system.

Parts of the Claims Inventory System

There are three parts of the system that work together to help you pull up the information you need as quickly as possible:

  • The Claims Information Center contains many relevant facts and figures including a history of claims and even answers to some of your most asked questions.
  • The ReportER database is handled through corporate headquarters, so you can access relevant information from around the country.
  • The Management Dashboard puts all of the access tools in a user-friendly platform, so you won't have to struggle to find the information you need.


Completing an insurance claim accurately can be a time-consuming task and may be overwhelming if you have your own properties to worry about. With the SERVPRO claims inventory system at your fingertips, you can enjoy many benefits.

How the Inventory System Helps Agents

What exactly does the inventory system have to offer? Insurance agents can use the system to look up facts according to claim type and within a specific geographic location (such as nationally or locally.) Agents can get more information about cause of loss information or run comparisons of job costs. The database also keeps track of response times, company performance compared to national averages, and individual file reviews.

Simplify the Claims Process and Move On

Working through an insurance claim for someone else who requires the services of property damage reconstruction professionals while your own home or commercial property has been affected by a disaster can be difficult. With a lot of facts and comparisons all in one place, you may find the claims process has been streamlined and simplified, letting you move on to other things.

3 Tips for Locating Unseen Mold

1/10/2020 (Permalink)

A woman staring covering her nose and staring at a wall covered with mold A musty smell could be the cause of mold growth

3 Tips for Locating Unseen Mold

When you have a mold smell in your North Loop, TX, business there may be a problem. Unfortunately, odor alone is not always enough to locate the problem. If you haven’t found the source of the smell, here are a few things you may want to consider.

1. Look for Water Problems

In many cases, a persisting fungus smell can also indicate a moisture problem. This is because most mold growth occurs around areas of water damage. If you have a location in your company property that has sustained water damage this should be the first place you look for possible mold. Consider leaky appliances or bathroom areas, but also check around the foundation or areas of damage in the roof.

2. Call a Professional

It’s also highly recommended to contact a remediation service whenever you notice a mold smell. These professionals will have a good idea of where the source of the odor may be. In the event that mold spores are not visually identifiable, they should still be able to perform several tests in order to determine if mold is present on the company property.

3. Have a Test Done

If you can’t see the source of the mildew smell, the restoration professional can complete a series of tests to determine if and where mold may be. They may conduct an air test, take a residue sample, or even take a sample of material that mold may be growing on. Once the results have been determined the remediation service can let you know what the best course of action will be.
Locating a mold smell at your place of business can take a little time. Consider areas where water damage or other moisture problems have occurred around the business property. If the source of the odor remains unfound the professional remediation service can have some tests done to determine the location and mold type of anything located on the company property

What To Know About Fire Sprinklers and How They Work

12/30/2019 (Permalink)

Factory roof structure and automatic fire protection in building system Fire sprinkler system in a Rosedale, TX business

There are a number of sprinkler systems for commercial buildings out there. If your thinking about updating your fire sprinkler system at your Rosedale, TX, business then there are a few things you may want to know.

There Are Different Types

When it comes to a fire suppression system there are several different types. These include

  • Dry Systems
  • Wet Systems
  • Pre-action Systems
  • Deluge Systems
  • Foaming Systems.

Knowing which system is included in your business is as important as having a suppression system as they can work in several different ways.

They Can Work Several Ways

A fire sprinkler system can work in several ways depending on the system type. Most systems are heat activated and triggered when a seal around the sprinkler head melts allowing it to release suppressant over the flames. Most systems release only over the affected area while a deluge system can release across the entire installation. Depending on system type this suppressant can be water, a chemical suppressant used in areas where water could freeze, or a foam suppressant which is useful in properties that may contain highly flammable substances. Some systems can even use multiple types of suppressant. If the sprinklers to release you can contact a local fire damage restoration service for a fire sprinkler cleanup.

Placement is Important

In most cases a sprinkler system should be located up high near or on the ceiling. This is because they are heat triggered and a high location will allow them to be set off in time to suppress the fire. It’s also important to ensure that the sprinkler heads are not obstructed by beams, trusses, security cameras, lighting, fans, or anything else.
When upgrading your company's fire sprinkler system consider which type will be best for your company. Also consider where the best place to locate each sprinkler head is. Remember, if there is an emergency and the sprinklers go off, a local restoration service can help with the cleanup.

Evacuation Drills in the Workplace

12/24/2019 (Permalink)

Glowing red exit sign. Where are accessible exits?

Evacuation Drills in the Workplace

Workplace emergencies can happen, and employees should know how to handle them. If they don't, chaos could happen, putting people at risk of injury. Holding a fire drill isn't just for kids; adults need it as well, identifying the most efficient and safest pathways to take. After all, fire restoration companies can repair a building. They can't give back a life. Thus, managers and business owners in Allandale, TX, should do three things to prepare workers for these occasions, giving them the tools they need.

1) Create a Plan

Employers should start thinking about possible trouble. Are you prepared for a fire? Do you know how to handle violence? What would you do in the case of flooding? These situations pose physical threats and should be taken seriously. After all, you cannot predict these occasions. They just happen. Sit down with a team, thinking about your facility and how you could leave it quickly and securely. Then, organize your concepts in a portfolio, available for annual review. In it, make sure you include the following:

  • Safety protocols
  • Evacuation maps
  • Emergency contact numbers
  • Medical notes
  • Relocation spots

2) Share Information

With a blueprint in hand, hold a meeting with your crew. Review your expectations. How should people report an incident? Who has chain of command? Where are accessible exits? You do need multiple paths in case one becomes cut off. In addition, assign one or two people with medical responsibilities, capable of assisting those who may get hurt or need extra attention. Disseminate the fire drill information at least once a year, asking for feedback and questions.

3) Practice Procedures

During a major event, people sometimes panic. Have a run-through once a year, if not more. This could give people the security they need to avoid craziness. Initiate the event by sending out your warning. You'll need to know if everyone receives the alert. Then, time how long it takes for everyone to leave. When all is done, reassess and make amendments as needed.
Brainstorm ways to best save lives; then, hold a fire drill. Be patient, and work through any complications. Just remember that safety is key.

Will Insurance Cover Home Water Damage?

12/12/2019 (Permalink)

Document of Homeowners Insurance Policy Your homeowner’s policy will generally cover your damage as long as it isn’t due to floodwaters entering your home at ground level

Will Insurance Cover Home Water Damage?

When you experience a home flood, your life changes for a while as you focus on the cleanup. At some point, you will want to confirm whether or not your insurance will cover your damage. This discussion may give you an idea of what to expect. Home water damage is divided into two types of insurance coverage, depending on the origin of the water. You will file an insurance claim with your homeowner’s insurance for certain types of water-related damage but not floodwater damage. If rising floodwaters caused your damage, you would need a different type of policy.

Homeowner’s Insurance Coverage

Your homeowner’s policy will generally cover your damage as long as it isn’t due to floodwaters entering your home at ground level. These are circumstances that would qualify for basic homeowner's coverage:

  • Leaking appliances, such as refrigerators or washing machines
  • Stormwater leaking through the roof or siding
  • Water from heavy rain or snow entering a broken window or skylight
  • Overflowing toilet or bathtub
  • Broken pipe

It’s important to ask your agent about policy deductibles and limits, as they can vary significantly. Your agent will be able to help you with the process of filing a homeowner’s insurance claim.

Flood Insurance Coverage

If water entered your home due to rising floodwater or cracks in your foundation, you might be covered if you had previously purchased a separate flood insurance policy. These policies are generally based on your level of flood risk and are issued by the government. You may be required to have flood insurance if you purchase a property with flood risk. Your insurance agent or local city planning office can help you determine your risk level.
If water entered your Tarrytown, TX, home and caused damage, you will undoubtedly be considering filing an insurance claim. This discussion of the two coverage types for water damage may help you initiate the appropriate claim. What’s important is that you can return your focus to restoring your home and your life to normal.

3 Things Homeowners Should Know About Rain and Mold Growth

12/2/2019 (Permalink)

crawl space entrance Inspect your crawlspace for standing water to prevent mold damage.

No homeowner ever wants to find black mold in their home in Austin, Texas. Unfortunately, mold growth is a common issue many homeowners encounter. Many homeowners don't know about the correlation between rain and mold growth, which can be useful to understand.

1. Why Do You Find Mold in Your Home After Rain?


There are several reasons mold commonly appears in homes after heavy rains. In general, mold tends to grow in moist areas. When storms with high winds cause damage to a home's roof by removing or damaging roof tiles, this can leave parts of the home's roof exposed. As a result, a leak can easily occur, which can cause a moisture problem in the home. Additionally, rain can also result in high levels of humidity throughout the home if windows are left open, which can encourage mold to grow.

2. How Do You Complete Mold Cleanup?


If you do notice black mold in your home, you may want to try to clean the area yourself. However, this type of mold can spread easily and can often be hazardous. In general, it's wise to contact mold remediation experts. These specialists can help to safely contain the mold in order to prevent it from spreading throughout the home. Often, professionals will use HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) air filters and negative air chambers throughout the remediation process.

3. How Can You Prevent Mold Growth in Your Home?


Fortunately, there are steps homeowners can take to prevent mold from growing in their homes. Though you can't change the weather, having annual roof inspections can alert you of potential issues that could eventually contribute to mold growth. It's also often useful to keep your home dry in order to discourage mold spores from growing. Finally, keeping your home clean and checking for any leaks can help to prevent the growth of mold.

Though the presence of black mold in your home can be alarming, it's often helpful to know what factors, such as rain, may contribute to mold growth. It can also be useful to know what mold cleanup entails and how to prevent the spread and growth of mold in your home.

The Basics of Preparing a Fire Escape Plan

11/27/2019 (Permalink)

fire drill sign prepare your family with an evacuation plan incase of an emergency

A fire escape plan is often cited as one of the critical components of disaster preparation, but how many families actually create one? If a family hasn't created such an evacuation plan, is it because of avoidance or a lack of understanding? Some families just don't understand what a plan should include. Therefore, to help make the creation of your family escape plan easier, you should include four elements.

Multiple Exits
Clutter-Free Paths
Meet up Location
Preparation

Multiple Exits


An emergency escape plan is all about the accessibility of exits. Therefore, when you design your fire escape routes, make sure that each room has at least two possible exits. For example, a bedroom has a window and a door. Make sure there are emergency ladders installed for bedrooms on upper levels.


Clutter-Free Paths


Next, your fire escape plan needs to include clutter-free paths. Therefore, you need to make sure that designated exits and the routes to those exits are free of bulky furniture or other items that would slow down an escape.


Meet up Location


Every escape plan needs to include a meet up location somewhere outside of the home in a safe place. These locations should be easy to find, allowing a family to ensure that each member is accounted for when emergency services arrive.


Preparation


Last, you should have a schedule for practicing your plan, making sure that each family member understands all the routes and exit points. If you are having trouble determining those exit points and routes, you can contact a fire remediation company or local fire department in Austin, TX, to help you design a plan that works for your home and family.


A fire escape plan is a necessary part of disaster preparation, and it can mean the difference between life and death in an emergency. Make sure that your escape plan details multiple exits with clutter-free routes and a designated meet up location.

4 Tips for Keeping Your Crawl Space Dry

11/15/2019 (Permalink)

Roof gutter clogged with leaves Remove debris from your rain gutters

Here are 4 Ways to Keep the Crawl Space in Your Home Dry

Few things are worse than a wet crawl space. Whether it's due to a home flood or just some seriously dirty gutters, damp, humid conditions beneath your home are virtually never a good idea. Here are four ways to keep the crawl space in your Hyde Park,TX, home dry.

1. Keep Your Gutters Clean

Your home's gutters and downspouts are a dynamic duo that have one main job: to carry water away from your residence. If your gutters are piled high with leaves, sticks, and other debris, they can't complete it. Water instead plummets directly down to the base of your house. From there, it's just a short trip to your crawl space.
To prevent runoff from entering your home, keep your gutters clean and check in regularly with your downspouts to make sure that they haven't been knocked off by animals, kids, or storm damage. Ideally, water should be deposited at least 10 feet away from your home.

2. Check Your Dryer Exhaust Vent

Make sure your dryer exhaust is released outside of your home. A dryer vent that redirects hot, damp air into the crawl space is a recipe for mold and mildew-friendly conditions.

3. Close the Air Vents

Unless you have a family of mischievous talking squirrels living in your crawl space, there's no need for its air vents to be opened. All they do is create an easy route for water to enter the space during a home flood, pipe burst, or similar issue. Keep them closed or, better still, have them sealed off by an experienced water cleanup and restoration company.

4. Seal Up Holes and Cracks

While you're sealing up air vents, you might consider having the crawl space itself sealed, too. Those tiny cracks and holes have a way of adding up and can create a moisture superhighway. Don't forget to look for holes in the ceiling, too.
A damp crawl space can weaken your home structurally and serve as a breeding ground for mold. By taking a few wise measures now, you can reduce your chances of a sodden crawl space after an extra-wet winter or home flood.

3 Ways To Prepare Your Business for a Storm

10/29/2019 (Permalink)

Lawn mower worker cutting grass in green field Maintain your business's landscape

Tips You Can Follow to Prepare Your Business for A Storm

Though storms are fairly common occurrences, businesses in Leander,TX, are often not prepared for damage that a rain storm can cause. As a business owner, there are tips you can follow to prepare your business for a storm.

1. Maintain Your Business's Landscape

Though you may not think about your business's landscape when it comes to preparing for a storm, your landscape can have a major impact on your business. Debris and fallen limbs commonly cause damage to businesses during storms with high winds, so it can be wise to clear away any fallen limbs and to trim limbs that hang over your business. Additionally, making sure that your drainage spouts are clear can help to prevent flood damage to your property.

2. Consider Investing in Helpful Tools and Materials

As you are getting your property ready for a rain storm, it can be wise to consider investing in tools and materials that can prevent damage. Installing a lightning rod can help to divert lightning from your business if a strike does occur. If your area commonly experiences storms with strong gusts of wind, installing storm shutters can also help to protect your business from damage.

3. Make Sure Staff Knows What To Do During a Storm

When preparing for a thunderstorm, it's often wise to include your staff in the process. It can be helpful to regularly talk with your staff about storm protocol and procedures. Having a protocol in place can make it easier for your staff to quickly prepare for an approaching storm. When creating a plan, it can be useful to think of everything from damage prevention to safety measurements. At this time, you may also consider getting contact information for an emergency restoration service to ensure you can easily contact professionals if damage does occur.

A rain storm can cause major damage to a business, but being prepared for the worst can often help to prevent damage. You can make sure your business is ready for a storm by maintaining your property's landscape, investing in useful tools and materials and discussing storm procedures with your staff.

How To Fix a Leaking Faucet

10/15/2019 (Permalink)

Dripping faucet A dripping faucet can cause severe water damage to your Cedar Creek, TX home

How To Determine What Type of Faucet You Have

On the surface, a leaking faucet may not seem like a big deal. Yet if the problem persists, it can cause severe water damage to your Cedar Creek,TX, home. Luckily, there are steps you can take to repair the leak before it causes a major issue.
First, however, you must determine what type of faucet you have. There are four main kinds:

  • Ball
  • Ceramic-Disk
  • Cartridge
  • Compression

No matter what type of faucet you have, you should start the repair process by turning off the water supply underneath the sink. You also need to plug the drain closed before you get started.

Ball Faucet

As its name implies, a ball faucet includes a ball bearing. You can find everything you need to fix this type of leaking faucet in your local home repair shop. You then just need to replace the valve seats, cam washers and springs and then put the faucet back together.

Ceramic-Disk Faucet

If your faucet has a ceramic cylinder, it is even easier to fix. Just remove the cylinder and take out the exposed seals. Clean the cylinder with white vinegar, and replace the seals with new ones if necessary.

Cartridge Faucet

To fix a faucet with a cartridge, start by removing the handle and any clip holding the cartridge in place. Remove the cartridge spout and use a knife to take out the old O-rings. Replacing these should fix the leak.

Compression Faucet

While the above faucets all have one handle that can be used to adjust the temperature of the water, a compression faucet has separate handles for hot and cold water. If the handles of this faucet are leaking, simply replace the O-rings. If the faucet itself is leaking, replace the seat washer.
A dripping faucet can lead to higher water bills, and, in more severe cases, major flooding in your home. If you are unable to stop the leaking faucet in time, or if a fixed leak returns and causes even more harm, water damage repair specialists can restore your home.

How To Keep Your Grill Clean and Avoid a Grease Fire

10/9/2019 (Permalink)

Cleaning a grill Grill Cleaning for just a few minutes after eating could save you from a major disaster

Sometimes there is nothing better than barbecue fresh off the grill; however, those juicy burgers could be a potential fire hazard. As the grease drips down through the grates, it accumulates around the burners and in the drawer. If it remains and heats up, a fire could occur. Grill Cleaning could help avoid this situation. Take a few minutes after enjoying your meal to wash and scrub the grates and parts. Need help? Here are some tips to make the process easy and efficient.

Gather Materials

Before you start wiping away, take a few minutes to organize yourself and your grill maintenance necessities. You'll want to have the following items on hand.

  • bowl or bucket
  • dish soap
  • grill brush
  • gloves

Take Pieces Out

Grill Cleaning can be a simple process. With everything on hand, you can get to work. Make sure the grill is turned off. In fact, disconnect the propane tank. You can never be too careful. Fill a bucket with warm soapy water. Then, while wearing gloves, remove the grates and plates. Place them into the bucket and allow them to soak.

Scrub It

While those pieces are immersed, grab your grill brush and start giving the hood and walls a good cleaning. Don't be intimidated by the flakes falling off. That's not paint or lost coating. It's grease and smoke that has settled into the area.

De-Grease It

You definitely want to empty the drip pan. Take it out and dispose of the oil in the trash. Grease can clog drains, so don't place it in the sink. Then, immerse the pan in the bucket's soapy water.

Reassemble It

With all parts now clean, put the pieces back together.

Seek Help Immediately

Grease fire is dangerous. If one starts, call 911, leave the area, and allow the firemen to extinguish the flames. Property can be replaced, but you cannot. Contact a fire restoration crew in Bastrop,TX, to help with the remediation.
Grill Cleaning for just a few minutes after eating could save you from a major disaster. Enjoy your food, and then clean up.

Where Mold Grows in Your Home

9/23/2019 (Permalink)

Patches of mold under cabinets Mold damage under kitchen cabinets

Where Mold Grows in Your Home

Mold is a fungus commonly found in the environment. It enters your home through open doors or windows. It can also get inside your house by attaching to your bags or clothing.
Mold can also grow on any organic material inside your Austin,TX, home. Some common locations for mold damage include:

  • Cardboard
  • Wood and paper products
  • Ceiling tiles
  • Carpet
  • Insulation
  • Drywall
  • Upholstery
  • Fabric

Since mold grows everywhere, you cannot eliminate the fungus from your home completely. However, excess mold can create nasty odors and destroy your belongings.

Preventing Mold Growth

There are steps you can take to limit the amount of mold in your residence. Specifically, you need to keep your home as dry as possible. Any wall or roof leaks should be fixed immediately. You should also remove any wet upholstery or carpets from the house.
In addition, you need to make sure your house has proper ventilation. Keep exhaust fans in your bathroom and kitchen.
Finally, you need to limit the humidity level in your home. In general, the indoor humidity should be at 50 percent or lower throughout the day. You can control the humidity with a dehumidifier or air conditioner.

Mold Cleanup

If you do find mold damage in your home, you likely have a moisture problem. This issue must be addressed first to prevent the excess mold from coming back. You can then attempt to remove the mold. You may be able to clean small mold patches by yourself using household products. Make sure to protect yourself with goggles and gloves.
Extensive black mold cleanup should be left to the professionals, however. Mold remediation specialists can remove the excess mold, eliminate odors, and clean your belongings.
While some mold or mildew growth in your home is normal, too much mold can harm your property. If you do see mold damage, you should remove it immediately or contact cleanup experts.

Salvaging Goods After Water Damage

9/23/2019 (Permalink)

water loss in a building Water loss in a Bastrop, TX building

A flooded company means much more than just sopping up water for business owners. Your commercial building in Bastrop,TX, has furniture, drapery, electronics, doors, trim and other structural elements that can be greatly damaged by water. All of these things are important and represent an investment. The first inclination may be to toss everything, but some of your assets are salvageable.

Dry and Sort

If a broken pipe is the culprit, you can have a little peace of mind that you don’t have to deal with the potential black water that comes with flooding. There is still the possibility that mold has begun to spread, so it is important to get everything affected by the water thoroughly dried out. Once you have completed this process, inspect and sort everything to determine what can be salvaged. Items that will likely need to be thrown out include any porous materials that can’t be dried or cleaned and fabrics that show signs of discoloration.

Clean the Damage

When faced with a flooded company, having your investments sorted will allow for a better understanding of the actual damage. Along with cleaning some things yourself, remember that dry cleaning is not just for clothes. Furniture, upholstery and draperies can likely be good as new after the services of dry cleaners. When it comes to the rest, considering the following tips to make the process easier:

Organize items based on cleaning methods, such as hand or machine washing.
Use a disinfectant on furniture, walls and floors to prevent mold growth.
Wash items in the hottest water possible to remove potential contaminants.
Use a professional water damage restoration service to ensure there is no interior damage to specialized items such as electronics.

A flooded company is a hassle, but it doesn’t have to result in a long-lasting impact on your business. Quick action, proper cleaning and the help of specialists can make it seem “Like it never even happened."

Flood Cuts Expedite the Recovery Process

9/10/2019 (Permalink)

Flood cuts were done in a bedroom due to flood damage Flood cuts in a Northwest Hills, TX home

Flood Cuts Expedite the Recovery Process

Floods happen. They are ruthless, unrelenting and can destroy everything they touch. Saving your home after a flooding event requires you to be equally ruthless. You may try to convince yourself that:

It’s not that bad.
Everything will dry.
Recovery is a simple matter of new carpets, paint and wallpaper,

Unfortunately, time is working against you. You already have an early-stage mold problem. If it becomes visible, the real problems begin.

Flood Recovery Begins at the High-Water Mark

This mark on the indoor walls of your home is the starting point for your restoration efforts. When the mark is on wallboard, you can assume that the damage extends above this mark and behind the wall. Flood cuts are a simple and effective way to deal with this wallboard damage.

Flood Cuts Speed Up Drying and Save Money

These cuts remove wet and conserve undamaged wallboard. It keeps the repair costs low. A horizontal, straight and clean flood cut simplifies late-stage wallboard repairs. The flood cut is the first of a three-step recovery process.

Mark a horizontal line one foot above the high-water mark and cut along that line. Tear out and dispose of all wallboard below the cut. If the damage extends above the line, draw a higher line and cut again. Continue until the damaged wallboard removal is complete.
Remove and dispose of all the wet insulation behind the wall. Leave the space open until it is dry and it is time to install new wallboard.
Deploy fans and other drying equipment to dry studs and other structural components. Also, evaluate other features behind the wallboard. They may include electrical, plumbing and HVAC equipment. Finally, be aware that contamination is frequently an issue with flooding. Sewage, pesticides and other chemicals are common in floodwater. Cleaning and disinfecting may be required.

There are flood recovery specialists ready to respond in the Northwest Hills, TX, area. They have the equipment, training and experience to deal with your flooding problem quickly and thoroughly. It all begins with a simple phone call.

Effects of Water Damage on Building Materials

8/30/2019 (Permalink)

Swelling wood floor in North Loop, TX

When it comes to building materials in North Loop,TX, homes, water damage can be devastating. From swelling wood and corroding metal, here are some of the effects of water damage to your property that might leave you on the hook for a water pipe repair.

Cosmetic Effects

Water damage can affect everything from the walls and doors to the windows and floors. Sometimes the outward appearance of damage can last a lot longer than the weather that caused the flooding in the first place. Here are some cosmetic issues you might face:

  • Damaged wood floors can be a big issue with recently flooded homes, as the hardwood warps and becomes uneven.
  • Blistering paint and peeling wallpaper can become very obvious in places sorely affected by leaky pipes or natural flooding.
  • Baseboards and vinyl flooring can start to peel away from walls, especially in bathroom areas.

Structural Problems

Structural issues can also occur through long exposure to water damage from pipes or flooding. Whether it’s an internal supply line or damage hidden beneath the floorboards in your home, water can saturate and weaken the structure of your home. Metal pipes can tarnish and become frail, even corroding after a long period of time under the stress of water. Swelling wood panels and drywall can rot and crack irreparably. Seeking advice from an emergency restoration company is a good way to pinpoint these potential problems even if they aren’t currently visible. An expert opinion is essential to overcome the negative impact that water damage will have on the structure of your home and to prevent potential issues with mold and mildew. Depending on where you live, water damage can differ in impact to your home’s structure, so it also helps that qualified professionals know what to expect in the geographical area of your home.

“Like it Never Even Happened”

From swelling wood and drywall to mold and mildew, the aftereffects of flooding can be destructive to your property. Fortunately, emergency restoration experts can help lead the way in recovering from natural disasters and in water pipe repair, helping you have peace of mind.

3 Steps for Preparing Your Business Before a Flood

8/23/2019 (Permalink)

Placing tarps over roof in Rosedale, TX

Prepare Your Company Before Flooding

Before flooding occurs at your Rosedale,TX, company, you may want to prepare ahead of time. There are a few steps you can take before the storm arrives to help protect the property. These include

1. Knowing Your Local Weather

One of the main things you can do to help prevent flood damage is to have an idea of what the storm conditions are in your area. This will allow you to prepare before bad weather hits and take measures such as protecting vulnerable areas of the property. If you know the area is going to be especially cold you can also take measures the help prevent any pipes on the property from freezing.

2. Taking Necessary Precautions

Another thing you can do if you believe your business property may experience flooding, is take some time to put protective measures in place. This may include sandbagging areas where you believe water made pool, placing tarps or boards over roof to protect against wind damage, closing any storm shutters, and inspecting your drainage and any irrigation for potential clogs. Doing these steps before a storm hits may help protect against some types of damage.

3. Having a Clean up Plan

Another step you may want to consider for storm preparation, is having a plan in case damage does occur. This may include having the number of a storm damage restoration team that you can contact for any cleanup, repairs, or sanitation needs after black water flooding. Knowing your cleanup plan ahead of time may help you save time after the storm.
Knowing the weather patterns of your area can help you prevent flooding at your place of business. When you know a storm is coming, you can also take the necessary precautions to protect areas of the property prone to damage. It's also a good idea to have a cleanup plan in place before it becomes necessary.

How To Prepare Your Business for a Fire

8/16/2019 (Permalink)

For proper fire preparation, ensure you have enough fire extinguishers around the building

How To Prepare Your Business for a Fire

As a business owner in Allandale,TX, the physical assets and investments you have accumulated can be a vital component to your success. From machinery, tools, and the building where everything takes place, a business fire can be devastating. Protecting these assets, as well as the people that work for you, is a critical component to your success as a business. Fire prevention should play a part in your protection plan, so you’re not caught off guard with potentially catastrophic losses.

Fire Extinguishing Equipment

For proper fire preparation, ensure you have enough fire extinguishers around the building and make sure they are updated. They should be stamped with a date, which should be less than a year old. The extinguishers must also be mounted correctly and without any obstructions around them. If your building has a hood system, it is necessary to have it inspected twice per year. If you have a sprinkler system, the sprinklers themselves should not have anything within 18 inches of them. Fire doors must also be clear and fully functioning.

Employees

It’s also important to talk about the possibilities of a business fire with your employees and make sure they are trained on what to do in potential emergency situations. Make sure they keep combustibles away from heat sources, properly use and store flammables, and know how to operate fire extinguishers and where they are located. It’s not a bad idea to conduct fire drills occasionally, especially for larger businesses with many employees.

Keep Your Building Safe

To prevent fire damage, it is also important that other parts of the building are up to code and safe to operate, as well as clutter-free for employees to safely do their jobs.

Electrical outlets should not have exposed wiring.
Extension cords should generally only be used as a temporary solution.
Electrical panels should have at least 36 inches of clearance.
Hallways should be clear of unnecessary trash or clutter.

Being prepared for a business fire is an essential part of any disaster preparation plan. While a fire might seem unlikely, mistakes and unexpected things do happen. Prepare for the worst and hope for the best, and if you experience the worst, there are fire remediation solutions to get you back on your feet in no time.

What To Know About Mold and Your Business

7/25/2019 (Permalink)

white walls with grey discoloration If you believe you have found mold, it's best to contact a professional

Mitigation Steps

One of the things that may cause issues for any Tarrytown, TX, business is mold growth. Fortunately, the more you learn about this fungi the easier it is to prevent. Here are three things to know that can help you take the proper mitigation steps.

1. Mold Thrives in Specific Conditions

The first thing to understand about mold is what it is and how it grows. Is first and foremost a fungus. This means it consumes organic materials, and lives best in areas of darkness and high humidity. Mold, like most fungi, also grows in colonies. This means that most visible mold infestations are actually groups of multiple spores instead. Fortunately, the growth rate is rather slow making it easy to identify and remove.

2. Mold Can Grow in Hidden Places

It's also important to know where mold growth may occur. This fungi is most typically found in places where water damage has been a problem. This is because such damage creates the ideal environment for growth. Be sure to check in areas such as ventilation shafts, behind walls, or under flooring.

3. Mold is Removable

You may be comforted to know that mold is removable. If you find spores on your business property, then you may want to contact a mold remediation service. These professional teams of individuals have the tools and knowledge to test for mold type, and determine the appropriate action for removal. They may also be able to look at the surrounding area for any spreading, or additional problems the spores may have caused.
Preventing mold growth and your place of business can be as easy as understanding the conditions that contribute to growth, where they can grow, and that mold can be removed. If you believe you may have found mold on your property, it's best to contact a professional. They can also answer any questions you may have.

6 Simple Rules for Cleaning Up Your Possessions After a Flood

7/23/2019 (Permalink)

Performed Flood Cuts to a local Hospital after suffering Storm Damage.

Cleanup after a flood is different than any other type of cleaning. If your home has been hit by a storm, hurricane, or levy break, you know it can be a nightmare. Sifting through personal possessions soaked in filthy black water can be difficult, and while the items may be filled with memories, they can also now carry contaminants. Once content cleaning begins, it can be difficult to know what can be saved and what needs to be discarded.

6 Simple Rules for Cleaning Up After a Deluge.

  1. If an item can soak up water, think of it like a sponge filled with potential toxins. This includes clothing, bedding, carpets, and couches.
  1. Nonporous surfaces can often be cleaned with a disinfectant. Special care should be taken to remove any possibility of mold or mildew growth. 
  1. If two surfaces touch on a nonporous item, the possibility of mold or mildew rises astronomically. Think oil paintings in frames, handles on metal cabinets, and plastic drawer bins.
  1. Textiles can often be salvaged if they can be washed and dried within 48 hours. There are exceptions to fabric content cleaning, however. It is not recommended that wool, leather, and silk items be washed. Often, wool can shrink, leather may crack or lose its shape, and silk can become brittle after being in a dryer.
  1. If you have access to a working bathtub immediately after a flood, you can often save nonporous objects. Soak small items of metal, plastic, or other manufactured materials in a disinfecting solution until you have time to deal with them.
  1. Freeze damaged heirloom books, framed pictures, or important papers in plastic bags. This may allow more time to contemplate conservation efforts such as photocopying.

Contact a Flood Restoration Specialist  

Consider contacting a flood restoration specialist team in Austin, TX, to help with content cleaning and item removal after a saturating water disaster. Knowledgeable experts can provide drying and dehumidifying equipment and bring in a workforce to assist with cleanup efforts. 

5 Tips for Utilizing Smoke Alarms

7/18/2019 (Permalink)

Test that the smoke alarm is working properly

5 Tips for Utilizing Smoke Alarms

Having a properly installed smoke alarm in your Bastrop,TX, home is an important home safety step for anyone. This tools can help warn you of smoke and fire in the home allowing you time to take appropriate action. Here are a few things you may want to know.

1. Replace Batteries Regularly

One of the first things to remember is to regularly check the batteries in your alarm unit. Most experts recommend replacing them one a year.

2. Have More Than One

The number of units in your home should reflect the size and shape of the house. Experts recommend placing a smoke detector both inside and outside each bedroom, and in areas for fire risk such as a kitchen.

3. Test Functionality

It’s also important to test that the smoke alarm is working properly. Many alarms have a test button that will allow you to temporarily hear the sound you can expect the unit to emit if everything is working properly. If the unit does not seem to be functioning you may want to check the batteries.

4. Know When to Replace Them

Units may vary in their lifespan but most last for about 10 years. If your smoke detector is older than that, or appears to be in poor repair you may want to get a new one.

5. Be Ready To Act

An alarm isn’t much use if you don’t know how to react when you hear it. Be sure to have an emergency plan in place and that everyone in your home knows what it is. Remember, a fire damage restoration service can repair your home, so ensure your family is safe first.
When it comes to maintaining a smoke alarm in your home it’s important to check the batteries regularly to insure functionality, replace the unit when needed, have enough for your home’s size, and know what to do when an alarm goes off. These tools can help buy the time you need to act safely if a fire does occur.

What To Do When Flood Insurance Is Not Enough

7/10/2019 (Permalink)

Anyone can apply for assistance from FEMA

Unfortunately, not everyone affected by a flood in Austin,TX, has flood insurance. However, federal disaster aid, available to those in federally declared disaster areas, can provide relief for some. Disaster aid can also benefit those whose insurance does not pay out enough to cover their disaster-related expenses.

Who Is Eligible for Federal Disaster Assistance? 

Anyone can apply for assistance from FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency). However, your eligibility will be determined by several factors, including your yearly income, the amount of damage done to your property and flood insurance coverage. If you are approved for a grant, you will be notified of how much money you will receive and the ways in which you can use the funds. In general, spending is restricted to disaster-related expenses, including the following:

  • Temporary housing
  • Medical expenses
  • Funeral expenses
  • Property restoration

How To Apply for Federal Disaster Assistance

You can apply online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov or by telephone at 800-621-3362 or (TTY) 800-462-7585 or at 800-621-3362 for video relay service. A FEMA inspector will come to your property, and you will later receive notification of whether your application was approved. If you have already begun repairs, you may be eligible for reimbursement funds. In this case, it is important to have before and after photographs.

What To Do if You Need More Aid

If you are ineligible for a federal grant or you need more financial assistance, you can apply for a low- interest disaster loan from the Small Business Administration. Like grants, these loans are only available to those in a federally declared disaster area and should be used for disaster-recovery expenses. However, unlike grants, these are loans that do have to be repaid. You can apply online at disasterloan.sba.gov.

Although everyone in a flood plane is encouraged to invest in flood insurance, the government understands that this is not always possible, and that insurance does not necessarily cover all disaster-related expenses. It is important to know all the available options in order to get your life back on track following a flood.

What To Do With Fire Damaged Electronics

6/27/2019 (Permalink)

A professional can restore your electronics

After an electrical fire at a Hyde Park,TX, business, one may be wondering what to do with any damaged electronics. In this situation there are several important things to know.

Several Types of Damage Can Occur

During a fire several types of damage to your electronics may occur. These may include

  • Heat that can melt plastic or copper components
  • Smoke damage can leave a black film inside the electronics
  • The acidic nature of soot can deteriorate electronic components and shorten life span
  • Magnetic charge in smoke can short-circuit some electronic components

A Professional Should Be Called

After an electrical fire, you may want to contact a fire damage restoration service to handle any of your cleanup needs. These professionals cannot only work on your business property, but they may be able to restore your electronics as well. The exact methods used will vary depending on the nature of the electronics and the type of damage they have suffered. Fortunately, a professional service will have the tools and knowledge needed do so safely and efficiently.

There Are a Few Ways You Can Help

If you think a computer cleanup could become necessary at your place of business for any reason there are a few steps you can take to help mitigate potential damage. One of the easiest is to backup any data stored on your computers. This may include having a server set up that could be used to restore hard drives, storing information in the cloud where it can be re-downloaded, or keeping backup files at an alternate location. Doing so will allow you know that your company information is safe even if any memory components need to be replaced.

After an electrical fire several types of damage can occur to your electronics. Knowing what type of damage is present, and what type of electronics you are dealing with can help determine the proper restoration methods to use. Fortunately, there are many professionals who can help. You may also want to consider using a backup drive or server to help prevent any information lost during the worst case scenario.

Preparing Your Commercial Building for the Spring Thaw

6/19/2019 (Permalink)

Make sure any rain gutters are clear and water is able to flow freely

Your business may not be off the hook for the possibility of flooding just because you don’t have a leaking supply line or a frozen pipe. The annual spring thaw can present problems of a different type. Luckily, there are steps you can take to help prevent a spring flood at your business in Hyde Park,TX.

How To Prepare for the Spring Thaw

Make sure to check all of the following to help prevent water from entering your business when the snowmelt and rainy season arrives.

  • Have snow and ice buildup removed from the roof of your building
  • Make sure any rain gutters are clear and water is able to flow freely
  • Prevent snow from accumulating around the base of the building
  • Sandbag vulnerable areas such as doorways or window wells if necessary

Putting These Tips Into Action

A buildup of ice or snow can leak through the smallest cracks as it melts and cause flooding to run down through walls or into light fixtures. Keeping it cleared off can literally take a load off your company’s building and help prevent serious water damage.

Any snow that does melt will need to have a runoff point. Make sure that rain gutters are free from leaves or other debris and angled such that water can run freely through them rather than finding other, less desirable outlets.

Snow accumulation can cause leaking into basements or ground floor areas. Keep the snow removed to at least a few feet away from the foundation. Place sandbags at any point known to have standing or flowing water to re-direct the water flow away from doors, windows or any foundational fissures.

Even with the best preventive practices, a spring flood can wreak havoc with your building. If the spring thaw or a frozen pipe allows flooding water in, call a qualified water remediation company in Hyde Park,TX  to help work through the cleanup and restoration process. They are Here to Help you get back to business.

The Importance of Cleaning Your Water Heater

6/13/2019 (Permalink)

Flushing a water heater needs to be done every one to three years

As part of your maintaining your home’s water heater, you need to regularly clean and flush it. Your heater uses both hot water that exits from the tank and cold water that runs down to the very bottom of the tank. Over time, sediment and mineral deposits will accumulate and can cause a variety of problems. Not sure if the heater in your home in Leander,TX, is due for a flush? Here are some useful tips on keeping your heater clean and avoiding some common issues that can occur.

Potential Issues

Performing a water heater flush can help homeowners avoid some costly repairs. A few common issues people run into include:

  • Water heater tank leaks and bursts
  • Low hot water supply
  • Loud noises due to overheating
  • Component failure
  • Clogged pipes

If the tank does leak or burst, you will likely need to replace the heater and extensive water damage can occur. In this situation, you will need the help of a water damage cleanup company to rid your home of the water and repair any damage that occurred.

Performing a Flush

Fortunately, flushing your water heater is easy to do and only needs to be done every one to three years. You can hire a plumber to flush the tank or tackle the task on your own. Start by turning off the gas or cutting off the electricity to the heater and switching off the cold water valve. Next, turn on the hot water in one of your sinks and open the pressure relief valve. Connect a garden hose and have it run to a spot outside or a bucket. Turn on the cold water and allow the tank to flush until the water is mostly clear.

Being proactive in maintaining and regularly flushing your water heater can help you avoid unnecessary hassles and expenses in the long run. If it’s been a while since you’ve checked on your heater, quickly hire a plumber or flush the tank yourself.

Planning for Mold Mitigation Expenses

5/24/2019 (Permalink)

Mold remediation in a Cedar Creek, TX home

If you have significant mold growth in your home in Cedar Creek,TX, you will likely need professional mold removal. Depending on the extent of the damage, the mold cleanup process can be expensive, and not all insurance policies cover the cost. Here are some guidelines on what to expect when the specialists visit your home.

The Cleanup Process

Black mold removal involves more than just scrubbing visible fungus off the wall. The full restoration process includes the following steps:

  • Assessment of the problem
  • Removal of moldy items and materials
  • Disinfection of remaining surfaces
  • Drying of the area
  • Air filtration
  • Reconstruction of ruined structure

The final bill for mold remediation in your home depends on how long it takes to complete it and how much has to be done. The more extensive the mold removal has to be, the higher the estimated cost.

The Expense Breakdown

If you catch mold early, you may be able to save a lot of money on mitigation. If, for example, the mold damage only goes so far as your crawlspace or a sizable patch on one wall, your price may be as low as $500 or a few thousand dollars at most. If the fungus has invaded the ducts in your HVAC system, however, technicians are likely to need more time to make sure they take care of the whole problem, particularly if the system has been running constantly and thus potentially spreading the growth to other areas of your home. If black mold cleanup involves repairing extensive structural damage, you could be looking at a bill in the tens of thousands.

If you have a mold policy or the growth is the result of covered damage, your insurance company may help with the costs of mold removal. If not, however, you may be footing the bill on your own. Either way, catching the problem early before it causes extensive damage is key to keeping the estimate on the lower side.

How To Clean Your Dryer’s Exhaust

5/21/2019 (Permalink)

Every time you dry a load of laundry, you must clean the lint screen

Three Areas of Your Dryer That Need to Be Cleaned Regularly

Washers and dryers are convenient to have in your home in Bastrop, TX, but your dryer can also pose a lint fire risk if you do not clean it often enough. Lint is highly combustible, and your clothing sheds a lot of lint during the drying cycle. There are three areas of your dryer that need to be cleaned regularly.

Lint Screen

Every time you dry a load of laundry, you must clean the lint screen. There are three ways you can do this:

  • With your hands
  • With a brush
  • With the hose attachment on your vacuum


Remove all the lint from the screen before putting it back in the machine. Fire damage cleanup specialists also recommend that you vacuum out the area that holds the screen and wash the screen with mild, soapy water to remove residue left by dryer sheets every few weeks.

Dryer Cavity

A lint fire can be started by debris within the dryer itself. Every six months, vacuum out the inside of your dryer. To do this, you must first unplug the dryer. Then remove the back panel with a screwdriver. Using the hose attachment, clean every bit of lint you see out of the dryer’s cavity. This can help you avoid a dryer fire and subsequent fire cleanup.

Exhaust Hose

The exterior part of your dryer’s exhaust is the hose that connects it to the wall and the area that exhausts it to the outside. It is a good idea to make sure these areas are lint-free every six months in order to avoid fire damage to your home. Detach the hose from your dryer and vacuum it out. Use a vent cleaning rod with a brush attachment to clean out your wall. Make sure the exhaust hose is clamped to the wall output and to your dryer before using it again.

Cleaning the lint screen every time you use it is only one part of avoiding a lint fire. If you are uncomfortable doing the deep cleaning yourself, you can hire a professional to perform the service.

Does Renters Insurance Cover Flooding?

5/9/2019 (Permalink)

Tenants and owners of residential buildings located in flood zones should consider obtaining flood insurance

Factors That May Impact the Availability of Flood Coverage for Renters

Tenants and residential property owners may want to know whether renter's insurance policies cover damage caused by flooding. Flood damage is excluded from most property insurance policies. The owners of structures in flood zones are often required to obtain a separate flood policy through the National Flood Insurance Program or private insurers. Find out more about the factors that may impact the availability of flood coverage for renters.

Check the Covered Perils

Property owners are responsible for restoring structural damage, which should be covered by a flood insurance policy. Tenants should check the terms of renter's policies to make sure that their belongings are protected. Damage caused by flooding is distinct from any of the following types of damage:

  • Sewer
  • Storm
  • Water

Whereas damage caused by storms or water is covered by most policies, flood damage or sewer damage usually require additional coverage, either in the form of an endorsement, rider or supplemental policy.

Look for Exclusions

If a policy is unclear on whether damage due to heavy rain or rising water is covered, a policyholder should check for stated exclusions. Many property and renter's insurance policies explicitly exclude damage caused by any type of exterior flooding or a sewer backup.

Investigate Endorsements

Even if a renter's policy excludes flood damage, it may be possible for policyholders to buy this coverage back in the form of an endorsement. If a tenant resides in a structure situated in a flood zone, the additional cost of obtaining flood coverage may offset a catastrophic loss.

Tenants and owners of residential buildings located in flood zones should consider obtaining flood insurance. A tenant should be familiar with the terms of renter's insurance to determine whether damage caused by floods is excluded or can be bought back. Insurance coverage can facilitate the process of recovering from flood damage at a residential building in Austin,TX.

Severe Storm Tips – Regional Flooding preparation

5/1/2019 (Permalink)

Please Be Prepared

Regional Flooding is occurring more and more often and with greater severity according to NOAA and other organizations.  Flooding of this kind often happens with little to no warning and according to FEMA will occur with more frequency in areas previously not known to flood.

What can you do to be better prepared?

Probably the single most important thing a home owner can do is prepare a “ready kit”.  

A ready kit should include at least two essential things:

  • First, something waterproof with important documents and information such as passport, and phone numbers, insurance info and bank info.
  • Second and survival bag with first aid kit, drinking water, hand held radios, flashlight and food rations at a minimum.

Keep these in close proximity to one another and ready at all times.  Don’t wait until the storm is on the horizon to be prepared. Evacuation is always the first option, when that is not the option you choose, SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin says please choose to be prepared.

Driving Tips During a Flood

4/27/2019 (Permalink)

A flooded street is not meant to be a challenge. Safety should always come first.

When a bad storm hits Tarrytown,TX, floodwaters can rise in no time. Rather than barrel down your flooded street, you should take a few precautions when there is a lot of water on the road. Here are some tips on staying safe if you must drive after a heavy storm.

Steer Clear of Standing Water

Many drivers tend to ignore travel tips and get overconfident when flash floods occur. They expect that standing water is harmless. The truth is that there can be many unseen hazards beneath the surface:

  • Branches or other debris
  • Potholes or washed out pavement
  • Moving water

It is unlikely that you are able to discern how safe it is to drive through water when you can’t see to the bottom of it. Even a few inches can stall your vehicle or even move it off the road. Flood damage experts recommend that you find an alternate route or just wait until the water has a chance to drain.

Slow down

A flooded street is not a racetrack. Even if the water is shallow enough to navigate, you still need to reduce your speed so that you don’t stall your vehicle or hydroplane. If your tires cause water to fan out to the side, you are probably going too fast to be safe.

Don’t Use Others as a Gauge

Just because other drivers make it through flooded roads, that doesn’t mean you should try it. Flood conditions change rapidly. The car in front of you could have inadvertently knocked some debris into your path that will tear up your vehicle. Rely on your own good judgment rather than the whims of other people.

A flooded street is not meant to be a challenge. When in doubt, it is better to turn around and go back the way you came than try to rush through standing water. Safety should always come first.

How Does Category 1 Water Damage Differ From Other Types?

4/18/2019 (Permalink)

A leaking pipe will become a burst pipe causing flooding and three to five days of cleanup.

Category 1 Water Damage

When it comes to the different types of plumbing problems or water issues that could affect your building, a Category 1 incident is about the easiest to deal with. This comes from a clean water source such as a supply line or a broken pipe. It will not have contaminates that would be present in a toilet overflow or flooding from major storm systems in Tarrytown, TX.

Why is Category 1 Less Harmful?

A Category 1 leak or flood means that the main concern will be the water itself and any damage it could potentially do. You will not be dealing with black water and all of its bacteria and toxic content. While this makes dealing with the water a bit less stressful, it is no less urgent to remove the water and dry things out. In a short time, standing clean water can become contaminated and will begin to grow bacteria so it is essential to extract the water as soon as possible.

Why Can a Service Do Better Than you Can?

Your building is your moneymaker so it is important to get professional help to get it back on track as soon as possible. An experienced emergency water mitigation service will have powerful extraction systems; fans, blowers and ozone machines where needed to remove water, dehumidify and remove odors and help prevent any mold spores from growing. A service will also be able to meet the demands of your insurance agent for proper restoration.

Are Harmful Chemicals Used to Clean Up After Category 1 Damage?

Since you are dealing with clean water, Category 1 water damage is a much easier clean up. There is usually no need for industrial disinfectants and often, the contents and furnishings, and structural materials of the building can be dried and cleaned rather than scrapped and replaced following the water damage.

There is no need for you to worry when you are getting such good help from qualified service personnel and with minimal interruption, you will be back to business as usual.

What To Do If Mold Is Growing in an Apartment

4/11/2019 (Permalink)

Mold growth under cabinets

Mold contamination at an apartment building may pose a bigger challenge than an infestation in a single-family residence or commercial structure. Tenants and owners have distinct responsibilities and different levels of liability for reporting damage and arranging for mold cleanup. Mold growth may also affect more than one unit. Take these three steps to ensure that all parties are informed and resolve the problem as quickly as possible.

1. Notify the Property Owner

Tenants should contact a landlord as soon as water damage becomes apparent. If signs of mold appear without evident water damage, damage may have occurred elsewhere in a structure. Tenants and landlords should correspond in writing and retain copies of these records.

2. Document Damage

Tenants or property owners should take photographs or record videos the document the full extent of damage. A tenant can provide this evidence to an owner to support a damage report. Documentation is also helpful if renters or property insurance policies include coverage for any portion of mold cleanup costs.

3. Schedule Mold Testing and Remediation

A property owner should arrange for an indoor environmental professional to test for mold spores. An IEP can determine whether mold is growing, identify the species and offer insight on the best cleanup and remediation methods. Processing test results may take several days, and cleaning up a minor to moderate infestation can take up to a week.

An owner of an apartment or multi-family residence should respond promptly to reports of water damage or mold contamination from tenants. Disregarding these notifications may be grounds for legal action. Apartment owners should rely on certified professionals for testing and mold cleanup. While non-professionals may be able to clean up a minor infestation, trained remediation experts can make sure that the problem is eliminated and reduce the likelihood that mold growth will recur at a building in Tarrytown, TX.

Insurance Agents Can Benefit by Using a Claims Inventory System

3/24/2019 (Permalink)

Call SERVPRO of Hyde Park/ Central Austin

Claims Information Center by SERVPRO

As an insurance agent, you know that one of the most arduous tasks your clients had to perform after filing an insurance claim was to gather the stacks of paperwork needed for you to process it. Not only did they have to find documented proof of each step of work the damage restoration specialist did, but they had to have all the forms your office needed, and they had to be filled out correctly as well. All that has changed with the new Claims Information Center by SERVPRO. Here are three ways this new electronic system can help your claim process flow more efficiently.

1. Specifics and Reports

The CIC allows you to access a very detailed account of the damage, along with a list of specific repairs or mitigation processes employed by the technicians. Your spreadsheet will also show response time, how many technicians were on the scene, and how long it took to mitigate and repair the damage.

2. Prices and Profiles

The damage to your client’s commercial property in Leander, TX, can be assessed and an itemized list of mitigation costs, property losses, and necessary replacement materials can be entered into the CIC in only minutes. If the technicians discover new problems, the file can easily be updated to show necessary changes to the insurance claim. As the insurance agent, you will find a complete damage and repair profile when you log on.

3. Timelines and Updates

With the CIC, you can have a complete overview of the project as it progresses. When the work is finished, you can print a spreadsheet with all the necessary information for you to process the claim. With a final cost statement, including all project updates, the CIC can make your job much easier.

Processing an insurance claim for your client’s commercial property can be much simpler when you rely on the Claims Inventory Center. With a few clicks of a button, you can have all the information you need.

Home Builder Contractor Error

3/21/2019 (Permalink)

Construction contractor error happens

Building that new home or remodeling your existing home is exciting.  No one wants to think about having to deal with issues after dealing with all the construction and get moved in.  Unfortunately humans are doing the work on your home.  Mistakes will happen. Unfortunately sometimes you won't find out about some for months or years.  What is it you ask.  A drywall screw through a plumbing line. Drain line and even supply lines can hide themselves for years before leaking or leak enough for the WATER DAMAGE to occur. SERVPRO of Hyde Park/ Central Austin has technicians and professional drying equipment to handle the job of a water loss. No job is too big or too small for our crew.  We have state-of-the-art drying equipment and trucks with equipment for all types of commercial or residential job.

Types of Drying equipment

Dehumidifiers- Used to remove moisture from the air to prevent secondary water damage.

Air Movers- Used for quick and efficient drying of drywall, furniture, flooring or behind baseboards.

Infrared Camera- Used to find stubborn water hidden behind drywall and cabinets. 

Drying Mat System- Used to dry hardwoods by extracting water through a drying system.

Tenting- Use plastic sheeting to tent where water is bound and needs help with extra evaporation. 

Whenever you discover water damage call us here as SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin.  We hare here 24 hrs a day 7 days a week.  We are faster to any disaster. 

For some of our before and after photos Click Here

4 Signs You Have a Leaky Shower

3/17/2019 (Permalink)

A shower leak can cause big problems in your Austin, TX home

Leaky Shower

Because you use it so frequently, a shower or bathtub leak can cause big problems in your Austin, TX home. Sometimes, the leak can cause quite a bit of damage before you’ve noticed it. Here are a few signs to look out for that might indicate a leak in your bathroom.

1. Damaged Wall or Floor Structure

Over time, an undiscovered bathtub leak can cause severe damage to the structure of your house. If the walls or floors in your bathroom, or even the rooms around it, start to weaken, it might mean that there is a leak you cannot see.

2. A Musty Odor

Where there is water damage, there is often mold as well. If the leak is coming from the plumbing inside of the walls, you may be able to smell the growth before you can see it. If your bathroom is giving off a strong, musty odor that persists after cleaning, it is probably caused by a hidden mold growth.

3. Water Stains on the Ceiling Underneath

If you see water stains on the ceiling beneath your bathroom, this might be caused by a shower pan leak. Older shower pans that have worn out or new ones that have been installed incorrectly can cause damage to the surrounding area.

4. An Unexpectedly High Water Bill

Sometimes, the first sign of a problem is not visual damage. If there is a continuous leak in your home, you might end up paying a lot more for water than you were expecting. If your bill looks too high for the amount of water you use, then a leak might be to blame.

If you see any of these signs of a shower or bathtub leak, you should have it examined quickly. Because water can cause a lot of damage to the structure of your home if it’s not dealt with, it is a good idea to contact a water damage remediation company as soon as you notice the problem.

Frustrated With Recurring Mold? Read This

3/6/2019 (Permalink)

Mold spores thrive on moisture

Black mold in Austin, TX homes is troublesome. The fungus looks bad and smells even worse. When it appears in your home you may try to remove it, but it is likely to return. To avoid a recurrence, it helps to learn more about mold.

A Closer Look at Mold

Mold spores exist indoors and outdoors. Moisture transforms microscopic mold spores into a full-fledged mold problem. The spores float around and can enter your home in many ways. A few of these entry points include:

  • AC/heating systems
  • Doorways
  • Windows
  • Pets
  • Clothing

The fungus thrives in conditions where there is excessive moisture. This is why basements, crawl spaces and attics are prime spots for fungus growth. Additionally, it's easy to identify. It has a musty odor along with green or gray coloration.

Why Black Mold Appears in Your Home

Mold is difficult to remove and even more difficult to keep it away. No matter how much effort you invest in keeping your home clean, you are fighting an uphill battle with this fungus. It is not enough to clean mold from the surface of walls, floors, showers or other areas. The reason is that you must track down the water source that is "feeding" the mold.

How do you remedy this situation? You must locate the water source. When this is done, the mold won't return. Keep in mind, it is not recommended that you take this on as a DIY project. This is a job that requires extensive repair, cleaning and expertise. The best step to take is to work with an emergency restoration service.

It is always good to take preventive steps to reduce mold from appearing. But no matter how clean you keep your home, black mold spores exist. Because of that, any contact with extensive moisture often leads to a fungus infestation. Mold cleanup is not something you do on your own. It is best to seek assistance from mold remediation specialists.

Got Mold?

2/20/2019 (Permalink)

Mold Damage in a Residential Home.

SERVPRO of Hyde Park/Central Austin has been completing mold remediation projects for over 15 years.  We hold a state certified Mold Remediation Company licensed under our business entity Twenty Four Seven Resources LLC, Lic # RCO1114.  Two of the four owners here are state licensed Mold Remediation Contractors.

We also require all of our water technicians to be a state registered Mold Remediation Worker.  We feel the more training our staff has the better we are prepared to service our customers when they run into unforeseen or hidden mold on a job where no mold was expected to be found.

We get a lot of the same questions and statements we about mold when speaking with customers.  

Here are a few things to be aware of if you think you might have mold or if you do in fact have a mold remediation project.

  1. Is this the bad black mold?  OR What type of mold is it?  We don’t know and the only way to know is by testing.  Reality is for remediation purposes it really doesn’t matter much. All the mold and affected materials need to be removed for us to pass the air quality testing, using the same methods / processes regardless of the species of mold.  Once we have clearance you will receive your Certificate of Mold Damage Remediation
  2. I sprayed it with “xyz” so it’s all dead now can’t we just paint over it?   Mold remediation is a process of removing all the mold-affected materials, plus 2 foot beyond. Encapsulation is the terminology used when we talk about covering mold that is not removed. We typically only encapsulate when the moldy materials are structural and not practical to remove. We then use product specifically made for encapsulation and not just paint.
  3. Can you just spray something and kill it? Dead mold will usually have the same affect on you as living mold.  It’s the Micotoxins that you are affecting you. We could spend an hour talking about Micotoxins.  Bottom line, it is best to remove the mold.  

Although mold has been a hot topic among homeowners and water losses for the last 15 years, there still seems to be a lot of mystery and misconceptions.   This often leads to some companies using scare tactics to sell jobs or increase the size of the job. Challenge is most home owners are not educated with the state regulations and procedure for mold remediation and they take the advice from these unethical remediation companies.   We have seen $2,000 mold jobs turned into $20,000 mold job because of this.

It is our recommendation to follow the Texas Mold Assessment and Remediation Rules (TMARR).  Per TMARR any job with over 25 sf of mold you need to have a Mold Assessment Consultant (MAC) come in to evaluate.  It is the MAC’s job to write the protocol. A remediation contractor is not allowed to put the scope or work together when over 25sf of mold is present and can be fined by the state for doing so.

Our suggestion is to do one of the following:  Call us out and we will help guide you through the process with the understanding we may not be able to do anything until a MAC has been on site.

To see some of our job before and after photos Click Here

Step By Step: Combining Mitigation and Restoration

2/19/2019 (Permalink)

Just one call connects you to a company in Austin, TX that can handle the process from the first step to the last.

Combining Mitigation And Restoration

A house fire can cause extensive problems. Not only is there the damage from the fire itself but also there is likely water damage from the efforts to put the fire out. It's a good idea to choose certified remediation specialists that handle both damage mitigation and fire restoration. Just one call connects you to a company in Austin, TX that can handle the process from the first step to the last.

1. Company Contact

When you call, a dispatcher in the corporate call center contacts a local franchise to initiate your fire rebuild. House fires don't keep to a convenient schedule. With 24-hour service, you don't have to wait until traditional business hours to start the process.

2. Inspection and Protection

When the technicians arrive at your home, they walk through to assess the damage. This gives them the information they need to plan the time, tasks and cost it will take to complete the fire restoration process. They can also board up the vulnerable areas of your home so that no further damage or theft occurs.

3. Water Extraction

Removing excess water is the first priority. To prevent secondary damage, such as mold growth or further deterioration of walls and floors, the affected area must be dried as soon as possible.

4. Cleaning

Soot and smoke residue must be removed from all surfaces. Rebuilding services also include disinfecting items that can be salvaged before they are returned to your home.

5. Restoration

Once the damage is removed, repairs begin. Floors can be fixed with new tile or carpet. Ceiling tiles are matched and replaced. New drywall is added, and the walls are painted to match the remaining structure. The larger the fire, the more extensive the restoration process will need to be.

Fire restoration isn't complete until your home looks "Like it never even happened." By hiring skilled technicians who handle both mitigation and restoration, you can there more quickly.

Deductibles and Storm Damage: Can You Claim Losses as Deductions?

2/13/2019 (Permalink)

Ask your insurance agent if you are covered

Can You Claim Losses As Deductions?

Storm damage can cause significant losses for a business. However, the answer to whether those losses are tax deductible or not depends on several factors, the biggest of which is whether items or potential claims are insured. There is a term, casualty loss, which refers to the sudden or unexpected loss of something due to an unusual or sudden event. These losses can be deducted; however, there are several stipulations which may prevent you from using this deduction.

1. Reimbursable Items

You likely cannot claim a casualty loss deduction for items that are considered reimbursable, meaning items that are already insured and protected from loss. Therefore, anything covered under your commercial policy cannot be used as a deduction.

2. Routine Use or Neglect

Also, claiming storm damage loss for items that were already beyond their expected life or not adequately maintained will likely not be accepted as a deduction. For example, claiming an HVAC unit, which has been on the fritz with no routine maintenance checks, has unexpectedly failed due to a storm is not likely to pass muster.

3. Business Interruption

A casualty loss deduction also cannot be applied to projected future profits, meaning that if a storm causes business interruption, you cannot claim a loss on those profits you expected during the shutdown. The reason is due to actual loss and predicted loss. Deductions work by proving actual losses, meaning proven losses. Projections of future income are not proof of that income.

4. Restoration Work

Additionally, a casualty loss deduction will likely not encompass the costs of restoration work unless the work is not covered by your business policy. You can contact your insurer or a disaster restoration specialist in the Cedar Creek,TX , area to find out more information on coverage and payment options.

Storm damage is an unfortunate occurrence, but one that your business is hopefully protected against through adequate insurance coverage. If not, you may be able to claim a casualty loss deduction, but you will want to review the list above to ensure your deduction claim can make it through scrutiny.

3 Ways to Know How Many Fire Alarms You Need

2/4/2019 (Permalink)

Smoke detectors are very common and effective

Most homeowners know that a smoke detector and a fire alarm are mainstays of keeping your home safe from disaster, but knowing how many you should have to be safe is another issue entirely. Is one per room enough? Read on to get pointers on how to protect your Bastrop,TX , home from fire damage with the proper number of alarms.

Types of Fire Detectors and Alarms

It may come as a surprise, but every sensor is not the same. The main options for protecting your home from fire include:

  • Heat detectors, which include an element activated when a fixed temperature is reached
  •  Smoke alarms, which work by using special technology that reacts to the ions in high levels of smoke

Smoke detectors are among the most common and effective residential fire protection devices, but they’re only useful if they’re applied properly.

How Many Rooms Do You Have?

According to the National Fire Protection Association, you should have smoke alarms in every room, outside each sleeping area and on every level of the home. For a two-story, three-bedroom house, that means you’ll need at least five to be safe.

How Big Is Your Home?

On average, a smoke detector will cover about 900 square feet. Additionally, experts advise installing a fire alarm every 30 feet in straight runs, meaning a hallway or large, unobstructed room. Some states have specific requirements, so it’s worth it to do your research in addition to using this rule of thumb.

Don’t Forget the Basement

While it’s often an afterthought, especially if it’s unfinished, the basement of your home is just as susceptible to fire and smoke damage as any other room. Make sure your fire protection plan includes installing devices here.

Fortunately, a simple fire alarm is affordable and readily available, but you must know how to use one for it to work. Follow the above rules of thumb from fire damage experts to keep your home safe and secure.

Mold Growth Habits: Preventing Mold by Controlling Your Environment

1/22/2019 (Permalink)

Mold remediation in a Bastrop, TX home

Mold Growth Habits

Mold damage can be costly, and it can lead to extensive restoration work on your home. Additionally, if the mold is caused by persistent leaks in your home’s plumbing that have gone untouched, it is possible your insurer may not take responsibility. Therefore, to protect your interest, it is necessary to understand the common preventative practices that can protect your home and your finances.

1. Ensure Proper Ventilation

Without proper ventilation, mildew growth can become a significant problem. Use exhaust fans in your kitchen, bathroom and laundry room to ensure adequate ventilation. Also, don’t forget about your dryer. Dryer vents should be unobstructed and vent to the outside.

2. Repair Leaks

Mold damage is likely caused by excessive water buildup which in turn is likely caused by leaks. You may not notice small pinhole leaks in your plumbing because they may not reduce water pressure or even increase your bill. However, even small leaks in your walls, ceiling or crawlspace can lead to the development of mold. Have inspections regularly to prevent these issues.

3. Use Dehumidifiers

Mold growth requires dampness to survive. Therefore, to prevent growth, use several dehumidifiers in your property. You can install each unit in an area prone to moisture buildups, like basements or attics. Moisture levels should be kept at or below 50 percent.

4. Maintain Clean Spaces

Additionally, it is important to maintain clean spaces. Mold can colonize in dirty areas easily, especially if these spaces are prone to minor flooding or even puddling. You can call a mold remediation specialist in the Bastrop, TX, area to assess your property for potential high-risk areas and to help you take preventative measures.

Mold damage, while expensive, can be prevented. By ensuring proper ventilation, repairing leaks, using dehumidifiers and maintaining a clean environment, you can protect your property and family from the threat of a mold infestation.

How To Know When Water Damage Requires You To Replace Your Carpet

1/18/2019 (Permalink)

Call your expert to clean up and make your space safe.

When water infiltrates your home, many areas can suffer. Your floor most commonly bears the brunt of a pipe break or other flooding problems. In many cases, a professional flood cleanup company will have to replace the flooring. However, if you’re fortunate, you may be able to salvage this part of your house. It’s helpful to know when your flooring needs to go and when you can save it.

When To Say Goodbye

You may hate to part with your carpet, but even moderate water issues can damage it beyond repair. Here are some cases in which you’ll need to tear it out and put down something new:

  •  You detect mold on or under the carpets.
  •  The carpet was wet for three days or more.
  •  The flooding included black water.

Can’t Deal With Mold

The amount of water and time it sits on your floor has a big effect on whether mold will develop. You can’t keep the flooring if mold is present. Have a specialist look for mold growth.

Time Is Not on Your Side

In the event of a pipe break, severe weather, toilet backup or any other incident that brings water into your house, you hope to detect it early. However, if you’re out of town at the time, or if the leak is in a place you can’t easily find, water can sit on the carpets for several days or longer. In these cases, it may be difficult, if not impossible, to sufficiently clean the area.

Black Water Is the Enemy

If the flooding in your Austin,TX , home came from sewage, you’ve got a black water problem, and restoration of the affected area is essential. Black water can be harmful and even deadly to you and your family members.

If these three issues are present following a pipe break or other cause of flooding, you shouldn’t try to keep your carpet. Instead, call an expert to help you clean up and make your space safe again.

How To Clean Up Puff Back Soot

1/10/2019 (Permalink)

Oil- burning furnace puff back in Austin, TX

A furnace puff back occurs after an explosion in the combustion chamber of an oil furnace. Smoke and soot are released and spread throughout a structure. In addition to damaging the furnace, a puff back also calls for professional cleaning and restoration. Find out why you should rely on cleanup professionals to take care of puff back damage.

What Causes a Furnace To Puff Back?

Oil-burning furnaces run a risk of puff back. These incidents tend to occur when

  • The furnace fails to ignite
  • Oil vapors build up in the ignition chamber
  • An explosion occurs upon ignition

Soot from a furnace puff back spreads throughout heating and exhaust systems. The incident may also introduce debris to every room in a structure. Building owners and managers should monitor oil-burning furnaces for indications of problems, such as the presence of soot in or around the furnace or noises in the combustion chamber at the start of a burn cycle or while the furnace is not running.

What Damage Can A Puff Back Cause?

A puff back can damage the furnace and result in extensive puff back damage throughout the structure. Oily soot may coat every surface, including ductwork, and spread throughout every room with an open vent. This damage may call for the use of specialized cleaning equipment and solutions.

Why To Rely on Cleanup Professionals

Amateur cleaning efforts can actually worsen damage caused by a puff back incident. A cleanup company that specializes in fire and smoke damage will have all of the equipment necessary to handle this type of damage. Professionals can work quickly to restore a commercial structure.

If an oil furnace experiences a puff back, the owner or manager of the building should contact a furnace repair service and a damage restoration company in Austin,TX. Puff back damage mitigation calls for fire and smoke damage restoration methods.

How To Avert 3 Common Sewage Issues

12/31/2018 (Permalink)

Many commercial buildings in Cedar Creek,TX, may be susceptible to sewage issues. Because a blocked sewer or overflowing toilet can cause significant damage, it’s helpful to recognize specific factors that may contribute to the problem and learn how to address them. Abiding by the following guidelines can help minimize the risk of unsanitary flooding inside your facility.

1. Broken Pipes

Like most infrastructure, sewage lines can deteriorate and fail over time. While you may not be able to completely prevent pipe breaks, making conscientious landscaping decisions can help minimize the risk.

Roots seek moisture and can easily infiltrate and damage sewer and water pipes. Because of this, it’s important to identify the location of critical infrastructure lines and plant foliage away from these areas.

2. Blocked Lines

In addition to damaging supply lines, excessive root presence can result in a blocked sewer. Inappropriate waste disposal can also have a detrimental impact on the system.

Paper towels, diapers and feminine hygiene products should never be flushed down the toilet. To help alleviate this concern, you should have trash bins accessible in every restroom and post signage reminding staff and visitors of appropriate waste disposal techniques.

Grease is another potentially problematic product that can build up inside plumbing lines and cause a blockage. To help minimize obstructions, commercial kitchen staff should avoid dumping cooking oils down sinks.

3. Overflowing Toilets

A toilet overflow is another common sewage issue. Performing routine inspections is a beneficial strategy that may allow you to identify defective toilet components before substantial leaks and water damage occur. You can also help prevent unsanitary commode seepage by encouraging proper trash disposal, promptly completing necessary repairs and using a plunger instead of drain cleaners to remedy slow drains.

No Cedar Creek,TX, business is immune from a blocked sewer or flooding toilet. However, making informed decisions and performing proactive measures can help minimize the risk and may spare you from a messy and potentially costly sewage cleanup.

5 Steps of the Water Remediation Process

12/19/2018 (Permalink)

Drying process in an Austin, TX home

Water Remediation Process

When your home suffers water damage, you must clean it up quickly to avoid further problems. The best way to ensure that the cleanup process is done correctly is to hire water remediation specialists to guide the procedure. Professional technicians in Austin,TX, have the training and equipment to handle each step of the process from start to finish. Here is what you can expect them to do when they arrive at your home.

1. Turn Off Water at the Source

Broken pipes can expel a lot of water in a short amount of time. The first thing technicians will ask you to do when you call, if you haven't done so already, is to stop the flow by turning off the water at the main line.

2. Turn Off Power in the Flooded Area

Electricity and water are not a safe combination. Shut off breakers to the area that has the water damage so that if you or technicians need to enter the water, you aren't putting yourselves in danger.

3. Extract Standing Water

Standing water causes more damage in your home every minute it remains where it's not supposed to be. It sinks into the floor and seeps into the walls. Professionals can use industrial equipment to remove water quickly and safely.

4. Remove Wet or Damaged Items

After the water clears, items can be removed from the area to be dried and cleaned. If they cannot be salvaged, technicians will dispose of them properly.

5. Dry the Area

The last step of the water cleanup process is drying the area. This prevents secondary damage, such as mold growth, from happening. Once the whole space is dry, it can be restored so that it is usable again.

Unless the water damage in your home is minor, you need to enlist professional help to clean it up. They can remove the water and restore your property to prevent further damage.

How To Prevent Space Heater Fires

12/19/2018 (Permalink)

Space heaters in a Bastrop,TX home can make your home cozy in cold months

Space heaters can make your home cozy during cold months, but a burned space heater in your home in Bastrop,TX, causes more problems than it solves. In order to reap the benefits and skip the dangers, it’s important to take the appropriate safety precautions when you use your heater.

Establish a 3-Foot Radius

Your portable heater needs a lot of space. The cord is long, and it is designed that way so that you can keep the device at least three feet from the wall. It needs to be placed on the floor on a level area with nothing around it. Everyone and everything should give it a wide berth, including:

  • Children
  • Pets
  • Furniture

If you leave space around your heater, you are less likely to start a fire.

Turn It Off When Unattended

You may be tempted to leave your heater on overnight while you sleep, but this can cause problems. You can end up with a burned space heater if a pet knocks it over when walking through the room. Many space heaters come with an automatic shut-off feature, and this can help reduce the risk of fire. If you are not present and alert, your space heater should be off.

Change Filters Regularly

Just like with any appliance that requires a filter, the air filter on your space heater needs to be changed regularly to prevent you from having to call fire restoration experts for smoke cleanup. The manual that comes with your heater gives you instructions on the kind of filter it requires and how often it must be changed. Keep in mind that the more frequently you use it, the more often the filter will need to be replaced.

A burned space heater turns something that is meant for comfort into something potentially hazardous to your home. By observing safety tips and following the manufacturer’s recommendations, you can enjoy the additional warmth it provides without worrying about the dangers.

House Fire - Pack Out

12/6/2018 (Permalink)

House fire took the roof off. Getting your content out in a situation like this is critical.

Pack Out

Leave all the work to SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin.  We will pack up all your personal belongs / content and move them out.  Whether it's a pack out from a Water, Fire and Mold job we can handle it. 

The most common reason for a pack out is a house fire and sometime a large water damage loss will require it.  For a house fire your contents needs to be packed up and moved to our facility for cleaning and deodorizing.  In addition it allows for the general contractor to make their repairs easier and quicker.  

At our warehouse we have the tools and products all at hand to clean your contents.  We have specialized tools such as an Ultrasonic cleaning line for your content and some electronics and Esporta Wash Sytem for you soft contents. 

We can clean most items in house.  For those items we can't clean or something that requires a specialist such as a piano we can handle all the arrangements if your prefer.  Maybe is a special rug and you have always had one particular company clean that rug, no problem just let us know. 

We are here to serve you.  

To see some of our job before and after photos Click Here

How To Test for Mold

12/2/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial mold damage in Leander,TX

If you believe you may have found mold in your place of business then you may have contacted a Leander,TX, indoor environmental specialist to perform a mold test. There are three types of tests they may choose to use based on the type of mold being analyzed. Here’s what you need to know about each of them.

The Surface Test

In many cases if the mold can be seen then there’s no reason to test. However, there may be a few cases where the surface test is helpful.

  • During early stages when mold is unidentifiable
  • When the substance may be something other than mold growth
  • When checking other areas for contamination

After cleaning to ensure no mold remains

A mold remediation professional will know when to use this test and what areas should be examined.

The Air Test

An indoor environmental specialist may also perform an air test to determine if mold is present. These tests calculate the amount, if any, of spores present in the air. They may be used if it is believed there is a mold problem, but the mold is not yet visible. This type of test can also show ventilation or moisture issues which could exacerbate a mold problem.

The Bulk Test

The third mold test method used by inspectors is the bulk test. This test is used to determine if mold is growing on a surface, but unlike a surface test involves taking a sample of the material itself. In this case it is possible to see how far the mold has penetrated the material. This test is most commonly used when looking for possible hidden contaminants.

An indoor environmental specialist can use testing to determine if, and what type of, mold may be in your company building. The results of these tests can allow you to take appropriate steps to remedy the situation.

Helpful Tips to Protect Your Building After a Fire

11/23/2018 (Permalink)

Fire damage in a Bastrop,TX home

If you’ve had a fire break out in your office building, you have a great deal of stress and recovery to manage. Not only do you have to worry about the cleanup and restoration efforts left behind from fire damage, but you also want to ensure that you secure your building to prevent damage and injuries, not to mention vandalism or other crimes. If you follow some basic steps and involve an experienced team of professionals, you should be in good shape.

Overview of Building Protection

Cleaning up your building following fire damage is only part of the battle you have on your hands. It takes time to get your building back to working order, so it’s vital that in the interim, you secure the premises. A restoration company will recommend some of the following strategies and actions:

  • Board up windows, doors, gaps, and other openings.
  • Use tarps to cover the roof.
  • Hire private security to watch over the property to help deter looting and other mischief.

Board-up Services

You’ve spent enough time and money, and you’ve faced enough grief in the aftermath of the fire at your office that you don’t need to worry about suspicious activity. Boarding up openings in your Bastrop,TX, building will help keep out intruders. Restoration specialists can handle this task immediately following fire cleanup.

Tarp Services

Tarping the roof will play a key role in protecting your building from the elements. This temporary solution will secure vulnerable spots in the roof until crews can repair the damage or make necessary replacements.

Security

If you want to be extra sure looters stay out of your office building, you can consider hiring a private security firm to keep on eye on the property. You can even request a routine police presence.

When you’ve had a fire, you can have peace of mind in a professional company not only cleaning up fire damage but also keeping the area safe. Make sure you consider these steps in the process.

How To Prevent Mold After Home Flooding

11/14/2018 (Permalink)

Dehumidifier in a North Loop, TX home after a flood damage

There are several methods that can prevent mold growth after flooding. These measures may eliminate the need for testing and mold removal. Keep in mind that mold can begin to develop within just 24 to 48 hours, and the problem may become serious in a matter of days. Take the following measures as soon as possible after a flood.

Eliminate Standing Water

You can get rid of some standing water on your own using

  • Buckets
  • Brooms
  • Mops
  • A wet vac

Damage mitigation professionals can quickly pump out water. Getting rid of flood water is essential for limiting flood damage and the risk of secondary mold damage.

Clean and Disinfect Your Home

Mold thrives in moist, undisturbed places. Once you get rid of most of the water in your home, you should clean and disinfect all hard, non-porous surfaces. Dispose of porous contents that cannot be thoroughly cleaned, such as

  • Carpets and padding
  • Mattresses
  • Pillows

You should also tear out porous building materials such as drywall and insulation. These materials are impossible to restore and are prone to supporting mold growth.

Completely Dry the Affected Area

After you clean and disinfect your home, eliminating residual moisture is the most effective method for preventing mold. Use the following equipment:

  • Air movers
  • Dehumidifiers
  • Fans

These appliances promote drying, maintain a low humidity level, and can draw residual moisture out of semi-porous materials.

Check For Signs of Mold

After you have taken all of these measures to limit damage caused by flooding, you should still monitor your home for musty odors and visible mold. If you suspect that hidden mold is present, contact specialists that provide testing and mold removal.

These methods can prevent mold growth from becoming a major problem at your home in North Loop,TX. For the best chance of stopping mold before it starts, hire flood damage mitigation and restoration experts.

Can Hail Really Harm My Business?

10/18/2018 (Permalink)

Roof holes due to hail in Bastrop,TX

Most business owners know that hail storms can cause to vehicles. But far fewer recognize the threat they can pose to your commercial building. Hail storms are held responsible for millions in dollars each year in roof damage and damage to siding and roof-mounted equipment. Just what types of damage can these balls of ice cause? Read on to learn about the unexpected dangers of hail damage to Bastrop,TX business owners.

What Is Hail?

Occurring in strong to severe thunderstorms, hail is a type of frozen precipitation that forms when water droplets freeze together and fall to the earth. They can vary in size from as small as a pea, or as large as a softball or even larger, and they typically include jagged edges that can inflict major damage. Other important things to know about are that:

  • Hail doesn't have to be large to be damaging
  • Hail storms can happen any time of year
  • Wind strength and speed can influence severity of hail impact
  • Dangerous hail events outpace tornadoes

Types of Hail Damage

Hail most typically causes roof damage falling into two categories. Functional damage concerns roof performance and includes damage that can diminished the roof’s integrity. These can include holes, cracks and bald spots where shingles have come off.

Cosmetic damages, meanwhile, concern appearance rather than roof function. These can include dark spots, dents and pock marks that occur when hail comes crashing onto the roof.

The roof isn’t the only part of your building at risk from hail. These icy projectiles can easily shatter windows, spraying glass inside. Once windows are broken, hail can even strike you or your staff.

Hail events can be damaging and highly expensive. Understand the risks and be prepared before hail strikes. If a hail storm has already caused roof damage or worse, call a specialist in storm cleanup to make things right.

Flush Your Water Tank and Keep Your Hot Water Flowing

10/12/2018 (Permalink)

If your water heater fails call water damage remediation specialists in Austin,TX

Performing this one-hour task once or twice yearly will save you money on repairs, reduce your energy consumption and keep your water heater running at peak efficiency.

It can be done in six simple steps

1. Assemble Your Tools
The tools needed for a water heater flush include:

  • A garden hose.
  • A flathead screwdriver.
  • A pump or 5 -gallon bucket if no drain is available.

2. Shut off the Energy Supply
For gas heaters, shut off the flow of gas to the unit.
For electric heaters, turn off the appropriate circuit breaker.

3. Prepare the Tank for Draining
Attach the hose to the drain valve of the water heater. Ideally, the other end should go to a floor or shower drain that is at or below the level of the valve. If you don’t have such a drain, you will have to determine a draining method that works for you. Keep in mind that the water is hot and could cause burns or damage lawns and shrubbery.

4. Drain the Tank
The goal here is to drain the tank and flush it with clean water. This is a three-step process.

  • Open the drain valve which allows tank water to flow out and fresh water to flow in.
  • After a few minutes, open a hot water faucet in the kitchen.
  • Finally, shut off the water. When empty, give the tank one last quick flush.

5. Refill the Tank
Close the drain valve and open the water supply. Once the open water faucet shows a steady flow of water, shut it off.

6. Turn on the Energy Supply
Just reverse what you did earlier to shut off the power supply. For gas, confirm that the pilot light is lit.

Failure of Your Water Tank Is Inevitable
When your water heater fails with a flood, you can call water damage remediation specialists in Austin,TX. They have the skills and the equipment to perform your cleanup and quickly return things to normal.

Why Use a Restoration Company - The 3 Ts

9/28/2018 (Permalink)

Flooding from a broken pipe in Cedar Creek, TX

When you have flooding from a broken pipe, pipe burst cleanup is the first thought that pops into your head. You are a smart person, you even own a successful business in Cedar Creek,TX . So you can easily fix a pipe and clean some water, right? Unfortunately, you may be wrong. Water damage causes serious issues that may not be visible to the untrained eye. Restoration specialists have the skills necessary for any type of water damage, whether you require a clean water removal or sewer cleanup company. Remember the three Ts when considering if a restoration company is right for you:

1. Training

Water restoration specialists are trained in the specific needs of both residential and commercial properties. Certification by the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) ensures that the technicians are knowledgeable and current in their field of expertise. This includes health and safety concerns, drying methods, pipe burst cleanup procedures and restoration of both structural elements and contents. 

2. Tools

Restoration specialists have tools that you do not have at your disposal. Professional grade pumps and vacuums are used to remove excess water. Moisture levels are monitored with hygrometers and other specialized detectors. Industrial strength dryers and dehumidifiers remove any remaining moisture to prevent secondary problems such as mold. Hidden moisture is detected using infrared cameras. 

3. Techniques

Restoration companies employ specialists in many areas, including water damage, storm damage and mold remediation. Different techniques are employed depending on your specific situation. For water restoration, a variety of cleaning methods are used including immersion, foam, wet, dry and others specific to the needs of the material. Restoration processes are tailored as well. 

Pipe burst cleanup is not the same as wiping up a glass of spilled water. When you have significant water damage at your commercial property in Cedar Creek,TX , a restoration company has the training, tools and techniques to restore your business to preloss condition. 

What Will Happen to My Solar Panels in a Storm?

9/21/2018 (Permalink)

Protect your roof from any storm damage in Bastrop, TX

If you are a homeowner with solar panels, and consider them to be a great energy solution for your house, you may feel anxious about what panel damage may occur during bad weather. Read on to learn what can happen to panels in a Bastrop,TX , storm.

Panels Can Sustain Damage

While most panels are tremendously durable, extreme weather can cause panel damage in some situations. Causes may include:

  • Temperature extremes that come with certain storms
  • Contact with heavily falling hail
  • Stress from the panels’ own operation in situations where high voltage is present
  • Hurricane conditions

Keep in mind that these modern pieces of equipment are highly resilient and designed for outdoor use, so it is only in situations where extensive roof damage is likely that you should be concerned about whether or not the panels will be ruined.

What to Do After Damage

If you notice any damage to your panels after a  Bastrop, TX, storm, you may want to check with your homeowner’s insurance provider to see if the solar panels are covered by your policy. Contacting a local storm damage restoration company is also a good idea, as they can usually handle various types of destruction and help you clean up any wreckage. Most storm recovery specialists will be able to arrive on scene fairly quickly and assess any existing damage. If they cannot help you recover certain losses, they may have suggestions on what you can do to restore your property to its normal state.

Panel damage is not something any energy-conscious homeowner wants to think about, but it is important to know what could possibly happen in the event of a natural disaster. Keep in mind that, even though most panels will withstand an impressive amount of pressure, it is good to understand your restoration options if tragedy should strike at your place of residence.

Can a Mold-Damaged Painting Be Saved?

9/14/2018 (Permalink)

Mold damage in a Austin, TX home

Now that a mold problem has been discovered in your home in Austin,TX , and mold remediation has begun, don’t forget to have items such as paintings assessed before throwing them away. Often, they can be cleaned and restored, saving precious family heirlooms and memories.

How Mold Can Damage a Painting

A painting with mold damage can have several issues. There may be staining due to the moisture that allowed the mold to grow, the paint may run or bleed, and the mold itself could over time damage the painting and the framing materials.

How To Have Your Painting Restored

Find a company that specializes in mold cleaning of paintings that can examine and determine if restoration is possible. Some companies offer on-site evaluations if it is not possible for you to take your piece to the company’s location. Once the artwork is in the hands of the restoration specialists, several things can take place.

  • An initial consultation can determine suitability for restoration.
  • If restoration is possible, your painting should then be given a thorough exam. This may include removing it from any framing or stretch bars to ensure a complete evaluation of the damage. There may be a cost for this evaluation.
  • An estimate of cost, materials that could be used and a timeframe for how long
    mold cleaning and restoration could take should be provided, reviewed and agreed to if you choose to move forward.

How To Avoid a Moldy Painting in the Future

Once cleaning of your painting has taken place, be sure to have the artwork professionally finished and framed. Make sure to keep the painting in a less humid room in your home, and check the painting every so often to be sure you don’t see any moisture on or around it that could lead to mold in the future.

Although seeing a treasured work of art damaged by mold can be devastating, it is often possible to save your painting from mold damage through mold cleaning so that you can enjoy it for many years to come.

3 Things You Don't Want To Happen After a Flood

8/20/2018 (Permalink)

If you have standing water from a recent flood, your business is susceptible to many different types of infestation. The three most common and most damaging factors that affect flooded facilities in Austin, TX, are the following:

• Insects
• Bacteria
• Mold growth

Bugs

Insects are important to the ecosystem, but you don't want a whole ecosystem growing in your place of business. Most of the peskiest bugs out there love it when your building has a flood. That's because some of them lay eggs in stagnant water and others enjoy dining on the building materials that have been softened up by moisture. Getting rid of the water as soon as possible is a priority if you want to avoid turning your facility into a swarm of insects.

Bacteria

Warm weather flooding provides a breeding ground for disease. Even if the water source is clean, it is unlikely that every object the flood water comes into contact with is disinfected. Furthermore, organic materials start to dissolve in water very quickly, providing a solution that becomes a food source for disease-causing bacteria. A good flood recovery company will come armed with antiseptics for this reason.

Black Mold

Mold growth starts rapidly when water is present in a building. It can take as little as 24 hours for the first spores to start multiplying. This is because, even in the most pristine buildings, the mold is already present. All it needs is a high level of moisture to get started multiplying and taking over the walls, ceilings and furnishings of your business. This is what makes mold one of the most common secondary sources of loss in businesses that experience flooding.

Insects, diseases and mold growth form a triad of secondary problems that can end up costing you a fortune to clean. Make sure that your water damage is taken care of correctly, and your facility is thoroughly dried, and you will minimize the risk of having issues in the future.

For more on Austin click here

3 Reasons Security Fencing Secures Your Business After Fire Damage

8/20/2018 (Permalink)

Security fence is put up to ensure safety during cleanup

After a fire harms your commercial property, the damage stands to become worse. With the help of a security fence, your Austin, TX, business can be protected from this additional damage. A secure perimeter helps to benefit the recovery process in these three ways.

1. It Alerts Everyone the Building Is Unsafe

For safety, a barrier will visibly show that the building was compromised and should be avoided. There could still be confidential assets inside if the building is too dangerous to enter, and the items could be damaged or lost from unnecessary weight on a now weak structure.

The damage may not be visible from the outside, or on certain sides, and people could accidentally enter believing the business to still be open. Additionally, individuals who are not as innocuous, such as looters, have to cross an additional hurdle of a security fence to stop them from stealing or harming property.

2. Insurance Claims Benefit From a Perimeter

Insurance claims need proof that the damage was caused by the fire. An insurance company will launch its own investigation once the process starts.

When the insurance company sends an adjuster, he or she takes a tally of everything damaged and in need of repair. By you preserving the scene from outside influence, the building will remain damaged only by the fire. This is important because your insurance may not cover additional damage if proven to not be from the fire-related incident. Your insurance coverage often depends upon the area’s preservation.

3. It Creates an Easier Extended Cleanup Area

When using the services of a professional fire damage cleanup crew, restoration can take anywhere from a few weeks to a few months. With an extended timeframe, building security for cleanup employees to safely work helps them help you. With others kept away from the area, restoration can go on unimpeded.

A security fence benefits multiple stages of fire damage treatment. Insurers encourage them, and restoration crews appreciate an added layer of security. Your business protects itself from liability and speeds along the recovery process by using an enclosure.

For more on Austin click here

3 Ways Water Might Make Its Way Into Your Basement

8/15/2018 (Permalink)

Flooding can affect your Austin, TX, home for a wide range of reasons. Whether it's a busted pipe or an act of nature, you need to turn to a residential water cleanup professional to ensure the deluge is properly taken care of. When it comes to your basement, high waters can end up in this space in a variety of ways, including the following:

1. Heavy Rains: Rain usually flows into the ground and leaves your home unaffected by a basement flood. However, when the rain is heavy, it may affect the level of the water table. A higher water table can leave the liquid with little places to go besides into your home. Sometimes the fluctuation in the table can even affect the sewage system and cause a sewer backup in your house.


2. Frozen Pipes: The plumbing in your home could be another culprit for this type of flooding. If your basement is not properly heated during the winter, this space could be at a higher risk for frozen pipes. When the interior temperature drops too low, the liquid flowing in the plumbing starts to freeze and expand. This expansion can cause cracks to form. Once the water thaws, it may start to leak into your living space.


3. Leaking Pipes: Cold weather is not the only cause of a broken pipe. Leaks and other breaks can still cause a deluge of water without the sub-zero temperatures. If you ignore the need for a pipe repair, you may end up having to deal with a flood in your basement. Even if the leaking pipe is located on the top floor of your house, the water can travel through the walls and floors to find its way to the lowest point of your living space.

Understanding the reason behind flooding can make it easier for you to create a cleanup plan. It's important to remember that your water problems could be caused by a unique situation.

For more on Austin click here

Effective Methods for Removing Water From Basements

7/21/2018 (Permalink)

Flood Water Damage

During times of heavy rainfall in Austin, TX, basements may accumulate up to two feet or more of rainwater. Flood water can take days to remove from a basement without the necessary help and equipment. There are a few methods to effectively remove hundreds of gallons of water from your building.

Heavy Water Removal

Once the ground has become saturated, rainwater must find other areas to escape, whether that is to city drainage systems, ditches or basements. There are several reasons that you might not be able to prevent excess water from entering a building:

• Property is located on a floodplain
• Basement wall or foundation has poor construction
• Damage has occurred to drainage pipes
• Blockage or overflow occurs in city’s main drains
• Drainage equipment or pump is not running

If you have a heavily flooded basement every time there are storms in your area, you may need to keep a trash pump handy, which pumps out hundreds of gallons of water per minute. This would give you more time to focus on cleaning up any damage that may have occurred.

Long-Term Care

Although a couple of inches of water might not be as difficult to pump out, it can still leave the building smelling of mildew or cause mold to form over time. If this is the case, you may want to keep a sump pump at the lowest point of your basement.

A sump pump may be capable of pumping out excess water from your basement as a preventative measure and can sit idly for months without use. To make sure it stays working, you may need to check on it periodically.

If you are the owner of a property in Austin, TX, you may not have the time or equipment for dealing with this type of devastation. With the help of a professional cleanup crew, you may be able to quickly recover from a flood and get back on your feet.

For more on Austin Click here

Four Common Myths About Mold

7/16/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Damage can be hazardous in your Austin Texas home

Mold is something that a lot of people have heard about but may not fully comprehend. It’s on old food, health inspectors look for it, and it can be costly for commercial building owners in Austin, TX. However, if someone is part of the last group, it’s important to know the truths and myths about mold growth.

1. Black Mold Is the Most Dangerous Type of Mold

This is partially false. Black mold is dangerous, but it isn’t the only type that should worry a commercial building owner. If any type of mold is found, it should be considered dangerous and immediately quarantined until a professional cleaning service can be called.

2. Water and Mold Damage Ruin Everything

This is a complete myth. While restoration of electronics should be left entirely to the professionals, it is very possible to clean items exposed to mold growth. It may take some time, but most, if not all, of the belongings can be brought back to normal.

3. Water Damage Is the Only Cause of Mold

Mold can grow in multiple ways. One involves water, but high humidity can cause mold to manifest as well. Unless the humidity inside is kept under 45 percent, spores can begin show up within two to three days. It is better to keep the interior of the building cool and dry to maintain the structure.

4. Mold Can Be Completely Eradicated

Probably one of the biggest myths is that mold can be completely removed. Unless the structure is a laboratory, spores of different varieties will be present. In fact, there is a level that is considered normal for most buildings. Mold can become hazardous when the concentration of spores goes over a certain threshold.

There are many responsibilities to maintaining any structure. That is why it’s always important to know the truths and myths about mold growth.

For more on Austin click here

Grease Fire Safety Tips

7/16/2018 (Permalink)

Grease fire in Austin Texas

The oil in your pan starts to smoke at your home in Austin, TX. Your smoky dinner can quickly go from disappointing to devastating if the oil turns into a grease fire. These types of fire are extremely hot and spread fast, so know how to snuff the small fire before it turns into a whole house blaze.

1. Do not put water on the flames. Water and oil do not mix. When you pour water on a grease fire, the water turns into steam and pushes the oil and fire out of the pan. This causes the fire to spread.

2. Cut the fire off at the source. First, turn off the source of heat on the stovetop. Then, cut off the source of oxygen to the fire by putting a lid on the burning pot. If you do not have a metal lid nearby, use a baking sheet or a pan. Leave the lid on for an extended period of time so the fire does not reignite.

3. Dump baking soda or salt on the blaze. If you have a significant amount of baking soda on hand, pour it on the fire. Salt also works because of the high melting point. However, do not pour sugar, flour or baking powder on the fire. Not only do these powders not work, but they can make the fire worse.

4. Douse the flames with a fire extinguisher. Extinguishers are made for different types of fires. Keep a Class B or a combination extinguisher, such as Class ABC in your kitchen for emergencies. Class B is specifically designed for flammable liquids, such as oil and grease.

5. Call for help. Once the fire spreads beyond the stovetop, do not attempt to put it out yourself. Immediately evacuate and call 911.

When using oil in the kitchen, never leave your cooking unattended. If a grease fire starts at your home in Austin, TX, take immediate, appropriate action before it spreads. Sometimes you cannot contain the blaze alone. Trust the professionals to help. Call firefighters to douse the flames and a fire restoration specialist to lead the way in fire cleanup and repair.

For more on Austin Click here

3 Types of Contaminated Water You Deal With After a Flood

6/20/2018 (Permalink)

Austin Texas Residential Flooding

If you’ve never dealt with a flood, count yourself lucky. Those homeowners who have experienced this inconvenience and potential disaster know the dangers and the costs associated with water making its way into your home. It’s important to remember that Austin, TX, floods can introduce contaminated water. This type of water comes in three forms or levels. If you can identify these types, it will be easier for you to know how to clean up and properly and what type of help you should seek.

Category 1: Clean Water

At the very least, when you experience flooding in your basement or in any part of your home, you’ll have Category 1 water to deal with. It has some of the following characteristics and concerns.

• Leaks into your home from a broken or damaged water supply line.
• Comes from a leaky faucet in a kitchen or bathroom.
• Can become worse if you don’t address it quickly.

Category 2: Gray Water

Gray water is a more serious form of contaminated water that can come from appliances such as your washer or dishwasher. If someone ingests this water, he or she could become sick because the water could contain bacteria. However, if you don’t properly clean this up or fix the problem, the water could develop into Category 3 water.

Category 3: Black Water

This floodwater is a grave concern because it contains sewage, including feces and harmful microbes. It can cause serious illness or even death if ingested. This contaminated water will come from rivers or from your toilet bowl. It’s essential to contact a professional immediately to remedy this hazard.

When you understand the types of contaminated water you face after a flood, you’ll know how to act properly. A professional company can help you get things back to normal at home.

For more on Austin click here

Steps to Repair Water Damaged Electronics

6/16/2018 (Permalink)

After investing heavily in the equipment and technology that keep your business in action, flooded electronics and the ensuing water damage can feel overwhelming. Is it possible to repair the damage on your own?

Corrosion Damage

One of the most serious causes of damage is the corrosion caused by hidden moisture. The combination of metal, water, and oxygen creates an iron oxide, or rust. This gradually breaks down the metals within your equipment. The damage may be apparent within a few hours, but it could also take days before you notice it. The damage to flooded electronics isn't limited to your equipment. Your outlets, circuit interrupters, light switches, timers, and other wired conveniences often experience electronic damage.

Removing Corrosion

As you begin cleaning up after water damage, carefully consider the risks. It is possible and often very likely that you'll cause further damage to the equipment, and you could put yourself at risk of injury. Some solutions sold for rust removal aren't appropriate for all kinds of technology.

• Unplug the device and remove batteries. Be aware of exposed connectors that may be fragile or affected by corrosion.


• Watch out for white or green buildup on charging ports or battery, SIM card, and metal connectors. These are areas of corrosion.


• Use cotton swabs or a soft cloth and a gentle cleaning solution to wash off the corrosion. The cleaning solution may be a mix of baking soda and water, vinegar, or isopropyl alcohol. If the corrosion doesn't come off with gently wiping, you may need to let the solution sit on the area and wipe it off later.


• Allow the electronics to dry completely before plugging it in or replacing batteries. Do not use a heated hair dryer on equipment.

The best step for cleaning your electronics is to contact a professional in Austin, TX. You risk doing further damage to the equipment, suffering from injuries, and voiding insurance coverage or equipment warranties when you DIY this task. Keep these risks in mind before trying to clean corrosion from flooded electronics on your own.

For more on Austin click here.

Spring Storm Strategy

6/11/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Damage and flooding in commercial building

When preparing for an upcoming spring storm, protecting your home is your priority and something you take seriously. As a business owner, you have to do double duty because it is crucial to ensure that your business is as secure as your home. Here are a few ways to help you avoid storm damage to your commercial property:

1. Watch, Listen, or Read

By watching the local Austin, TX, news channel, listening to the radio on your way to work, or reading a weather app on your phone, you can know what is coming your way and how to prepare for it.

2. Protect

Be knowledgeable about where your pipes are located. With a quick visit to the hardware store, you can gather insulation supplies for the pipes that are easy to reach. Hate the drip, drip, drip from a leaky faucet? In the event of a cold front that brings freezing weather, turning the faucet on to a drip can help you avoid a potential serious and costly pipe break. This is because the drip keeps the water moving in the pipe and doesn’t allow it to sit and freeze. When left alone, the water can freeze and expand, and this pressure is what will break a pipe.

3. Ask for Help

Utilize others’ knowledge on how to keep your business safe. Know who you can call to help prevent damage or to fix an already broken pipe. Save the phone number of a clean-up and restoration company in your phone contacts for quick reference in case of an emergency.

No one wants to deal with the headache of storm damage or a pipe break. By being prepared and creating a plan for your business, you can ease the burden of an upcoming winter storm. Your business storm strategy can also be easily applied to your home so that you won’t have to worry if a storm hits while you’re at work.

For more on Austin Weather click here

Downtown Austin Commercial Building Flood - Drone vs Fire System Sprinkler

5/31/2018 (Permalink)

Extracting water after a commercial flood.

SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin received a call from a downtown Austin Commercial Property Management Company shortly after 5:00 pm one weekday evening.    They had a fairly large water loss.  What was really surprising is that a 10-12 inch Drone was the cause.  They were flying the Drone inside and hit a sprinkler head resulting in aprox. 20,000 sf of Water Damage on 4 floors.  Personnel on site said it took them approximately 45 minutes to find the water shut off which is a big factor in why on sprinkler head cause so much damage. 

There are a couple of things to learn here.  First, is take your Drone outside to fly it.  Second, is Call SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin and ask about our Emergency Ready Program (ERP).   It's a mobile application for your Smart Phone that is designed to assist in a situation just like this.  We will assist with the install and add photos showing where all the shuts off are along with any important info you want your staff to know in the time of an Emergency. 

Link - SERVPRO Emergency Ready Program App 

This is a must have for all Commercial Proper Mangers, Maintenance Personnel and Engineers.   If they would have had us set them up with our ERP, they would been able to shut the water off within minutes.  A few swipes on their Smart Phone and they would have known exactly where to go for the water shutoff.   Tap one more button and they would have been on the phone with us directly. 

Give us a call, we will handle setting you up on our Emergency Ready Program.

Soft contents cleaning at is finest - Austin, TX - SERVPRO

5/31/2018 (Permalink)

Our Esporta IS4000 ready sitting there ready for your Soot damaged contents

SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin has the all new Esporta IS4000

This new machine allows us to clean soft contents to a food grade clean. 

Not only can we clean large quantities of clothing, bed spreads, towels and every typical laundry item you do at home now, we can clean items such as football helmets, knee pad, shoulder pads, stuffed animals, ball caps and shoe to name just a few. 

The Esporta IS4000 had patented technology and chemical formulations.  The really amazing part that's make this machine different than any other machine is has the capability to clean all these items to a food grade clean.  We can now take an item that came from a mold or sewage loss and clean it to a measurable food grade clean. 

It not just about can we get your soft contents clean we can get them food grade clean.  Ask your local cleaners if they can do that.  

 To see some of our job before and after photos Click Here

Severe Storm Tips from SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin

5/31/2018 (Permalink)

Sand Bags deterring flood waters

When regional flooding is imminent sand bags are often used to good effect to keep water or storm surge at bay.  Bags filled with sand are placed one on top of the other around low lying areas to create a dam.  There are however a few downfalls.  First you must find the materials needed and labor required to fill, and place the bags.  Sand bags and sand is not always available when needed.  While emergency services may have access to an infinite number of bags and sand, the general public usually does not.  Box stores run out in short time leaving supplies low or completely unavailable.  What then does one do when the bags and sand are gone?  “Play sand”!  It is very common that a store will be sold out of sand and bags, but have bagged “play sand”.  Play sand is commonly sold for backyard play grounds and is often overlooked by potential purchasers.  Play sand is a bit more expensive than bulk sand and bags, but because there is no labor to fill the bag.  However it is ready to use straight out of the store!  Remember this simple trick and it may save your home next time a serious weather event is on its way!

Call SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin if you need assistance.  

SERVPRO Hyde Park / Central Austin Saves Sunday Mass Confusion

5/31/2018 (Permalink)

Crew harnessed in on the scissor lift

Recent storm activity produced heavy rains and flooding in Austin, TX.  Local SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin is called out for a water damage job caused by a leaking roof at local church.  Church officials requested all work be completed for Sunday Mass. 

The High ceiling and Church pews made for a challenging job.  The SERVPRO Team obtained a scissor lift so crews could start work right away.  The crew used masonite to protect the carpet and tile flooring from the weight of the heavy scissor lift and the hard rubber tires.  Crews worked carefully and diligently to get the wet drywall removed prior drying all the remaining structure materials.

The SERVPRO crews finished their job in 4 days leaving the church with plenty of time to prepare for Sunday Mass.

To see some of our job before and after photos Click Here

Choosing a Fire Mitigation Company for Rebuild

5/24/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial Fire Loss

Choosing a Fire Mitigation Company for Rebuild

When you’re facing fire damage from a conflagration on your property, you aren’t just dealing with fire mitigation. You also have to deal with smoke damage, water damage, and reconstruction, not to mention replacement of any damaged or otherwise unsalvageable equipment. When you find yourself in this situation, you need to choose a fire remediation and mitigation company that can provide all your Austin, TX, services in one place.

Why One Company?

If you choose one company over several, you can consolidate your reconstruction and mitigation efforts in a single easy one-stop shop. Using one company can ensure:

• You only have to deal with one contractor for fire damage, smoke damage, and water damage
• An insurance adjuster only has to handle communication with one company
• You can shorten your restoration timeline with a single company that doesn’t have to coordinate with others
• You can reduce conflicts between different contractors

Attempting to marry all these services across multiple different contractors can cost you more money, as well. Some contractors have minimum base fees for jobs, as well as additional charges that can quickly rack up your bill when multiplied by multiple contractors. Choosing one company can significantly reduce the number of charges you face, and can make billing and payments much easier.

Finding the Right Company

Finding the right company after your business has dealt with fire damage can be difficult. Make sure to research companies in your area to find out what services they offer, and how other customers have rated them. Also check their certifications for remediation and recovery. A few other critical services you may want to check for are smoke odor cleanup, electronics restoration, and mold damage remediation – yes, mold. If you’ve suffered water damage from burst pipes or firefighters’ efforts, you may have standing water or saturated items that can quickly begin to grow mold.

Click here for more on Austin. 

3 Steps You Can Take To Reduce the Spread of Residential Mold

5/17/2018 (Permalink)

Mold can grow after any type of water loss

Finding mold in your Austin, TX, home can be an unpleasant surprise. Whether a leaking pipe or water line caused mold to grow or your home recently suffered flooding that allowed fungi to thrive, you now face the challenge of eradicating it. However, to prevent the spread of mold contamination, there are a few steps you can take before a qualified fungus removal and restoration service comes in to treat your home.

1. Avoid Touching the Mold

If you find patches of mold in your home, it is wise to avoid touching them. This can release fungi spores into the air and allow them to settle elsewhere, where they may colonize and grow anew. They may also travel to other parts of your home on your clothing once they break away from their food source, so you may want to close off the room or rooms where mold contamination is present until help arrives.

2. Turn Off Your Air Conditioner

Once you discover you have a mold problem, you may want to shut off your air conditioner. While your HVAC system can be helpful in lowering humidity levels in your home to prevent mold growth, it typically has no effect on growths already present. Turing off your air conditioner can help slow the spread of spores, which travel easily through vents and air ducts.

3. Leave Moldy Items Where They Are

If any clothing, books or furniture in your home have been affected by mold, it is wise to leave them as they are until remediation and restoration technicians arrive. These professionals can advise you on what can be salvaged and give you tips for how to preserve your belongings until they can be treated and cleaned properly.

Preventing mold contamination in your Austin, TX, home once you discover an infestation can be challenging. However, when you know which steps to take to reduce the spreading of fungi spores, it may be simpler for cleanup technicians to treat and destroy existing mold.

For more on Austin Click here.

Severe Storm Tips - Rising Water Aftermath in Austin, TX

5/15/2018 (Permalink)

Satellite image of a tropical storm.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association continues to report and forecast and ever growing number of storms and frequency across not only the country but the globe.  With this new environment comes more flooded homes and buildings and more severe cases. 

Rising water causes horrific damage, and occurs extremely fast.  If you can evacuate- you should! Once the water has receded there are some initial steps to mitigate the overall damage. 

Rising water is contaminated water; all porous materials it touches should be removed – this includes but is not limited to Carpet, Pad, drywall, insulation, and particle board.  Removing wet material quickly allows non-porous to dry out more readily which helps prevent mold.  Air movement and heavy dehumidification also decrease dry time which is the number one way to prevent mold growth.

Call SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin to clean, sanitize, and certify your structure dry.

4 Ways To Protect Your Family and Your Home From Fire

5/7/2018 (Permalink)

House Fire Loss in Austin

A home fire in Austin, TX, is a concern for every family, and you should be prepared. There are four key fire preparation and fire safety measures that you should implement.

1. Install Smoke Alarms

Generally, the most important measure you can take is to have smoke alarms installed in your home. Alarms can serve as an early warning system. Place a smoke alarm on every level of your home and inside and outside each bedroom.

2. Maintain Your Smoke Alarms

Alarms are worthless if they aren’t working. As part of your fire preparation, replace the batteries once a year. Test your smoke alarms every month, and change batteries as needed. Make sure everyone knows the alarm sound and what to do if they hear it.

3. Establish Fire-Safe Habits

Make yours a smoke-free home. If you smoke, do so outside. Never smoke in bed or when impaired in any manner. Dispose of ashes and butts with water.

Do not ever leave burning candles unattended. Keep flammable items at least three feet away from space heaters or anything hot. Turn off portable heaters when you go to sleep or leave the room.

4. Have a Fire Safety Plan

Prepare a diagram of your home, and show each family member two ways to escape from each room. In the event of fire or an alarm, get low, go and stay out. Establish a family meeting spot outside your home away from the house. Additionally, specify one emergency contact for family members to contact if they are unable to locate other family members following a home fire.

Practice fire drills twice a year. Press the test button on your smoke alarm, and everyone should leave your home and go to the meeting spot.

Fire preparation is important for you and your family. If you have a fire, contact a restoration specialist for help.

For more on Austin Click here.

Fascinating Facts About Mold

4/19/2018 (Permalink)

Preventing Mold and Fungus is important in your Austin home

Mold is the name given to over 100,000 filament filled fungi commonly found on organic materials. Fungus spoils food, clears rotting forests, and adds life to the soil in Austin, TX. Ranging in a variety of colors, including black mold, the colonies all look for food and moisture to survive; however, if moisture is unavailable, the spores can dry out and go into a survival mode that allows them to live until an available source of water appears. Then the spores begin to act like seeds as they are blown around to find a food source and create a new colony. That is why hundreds of spores are found everywhere, both indoors and outdoors.

Recycling

As one of the earth’s most important outdoor recyclers, the fungi are constantly looking for more food and water as they send out thousands of spores. Because the spores are always on the move, some colonies of mold occasionally find their way indoors. Normally, mold won’t find a home indoors unless the building has a moisture problem or a high level of humidity. Dark colors of green and black mold are especially fond of damp bathroom and basement walls.

Controlling

Preventing mold growth is a matter of controlling moisture and condensation indoors. Although this sounds like an easy step, keeping areas dry that are susceptible to high humidity levels can be extremely difficult. Poorly insulated windows or cold-water pipes can be a problem, as can crawl spaces and damp basements. Since warm air contains more moisture than cold air, warm humid conditions can be an open invitation to fungi growth.

Preventing

If extensive mold colonies are in your building, you may want to contact a professional mold remediation and evaluation team to remove the growth. By addressing the mold cleanup, removing the moisture, and rectifying ventilation issues, the team can provide an area free from microbial fungi and black mold. Most types of fungus have a voracious appetite and can quickly continue to spread if left unchecked.

For more information on Austin click here.

Restoring Safety: The Process of Sewer Cleanup

4/9/2018 (Permalink)

Water Loss in Texas Hospital

When your business in Cedar Creek, TX, experiences damage from a flooded toilet or sewer backup, the sewer cleanup process is a little more intricate than just wiping everything down with disinfectant towelettes. You need to make sure everyone is safe and then call in the professionals. Restoration specialists can dry the area, clean it, and test it to ensure that all harmful microbes and bacteria are gone. Here is what you can expect from this process.

1. Identifying and Repairing Source of Problem

The first thing technicians will probably do is stop any ongoing issues so that the mess does not get larger. Once the flooded toilet has been unclogged or the lines cleared, sewer cleanup can begin.

2. Removing Water and Sewage

The bulk of the water must be removed before anything can be cleaned. Professionals use the proper equipment to remove the water and dispose of it properly.

3. Identifying Salvageable vs. Contaminated Items

After most of the contaminated water is gone, individual items are evaluated. Some may be able to be cleaned and saved, but others will have to be bagged and thrown away. Before discarding any items, make sure you take photos to prove the loss to the insurance adjuster who decides how much your policy covers.

4. Drying and Cleaning

Next, the technicians will finish drying the building with water extraction equipment. They may have to remove parts of the wall or any insulation that was affected by the contaminated water and replace it with clean drywall. Anything that remains must be disinfected with chemicals that have been specially formulated to combat the contaminants in the sewage.

5. Testing

The final step is vital for making sure that the effort from previous steps was effective. Technicians test for contaminants and hopefully declare your building safe.

Once everything has been cleaned and tested, items can be moved back into place. The completion of the sewer cleanup process means you are back in business.

Visit us at http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information.

Improving Air Quality and Stopping Mold

3/30/2018 (Permalink)

Mold growing after Water Damage

Before you even start to think about professional mold cleaning in Austin, TX, you might want to know whether it's necessary. In many cases, you can take steps right now to minimize mold growth. Keep in mind that water damage and flooding often require more serious measures.


In addition, keep in mind that these tips are for everyone. You should probably use mitigation and mold prevention techniques regardless of your mold situation:


* You're considering cleaning
* You've just gone through mold removal
* You're experiencing excessive moisture in your home


Ventilation Matters


One of the first rules of keeping mold away, assuming you don't have water damage or a serious leak, is to keep the wetness away. Mold loves wet spaces, so keep a fresh breath of air moving through. Most homes are built so you can open windows and get a breeze to blow through. If you can't open windows, make sure to run your heating or air conditioning systems regularly. Fans are also a good option if you don't have central air. Whatever you do, make sure you get that air moving.


Dehumidification


After you get your circulation going, it might still be necessary to take more water control measures. This is even more essential if you often have sources of moisture in your problem area. Common causes of excess wetness include leaks, laundry facilities and some appliances. Most homes in Austin, TX, have at least one of these. The answer is to buy a special dehumidifier. These come in heavy-duty additions to central air conditioning systems, but you can also buy smaller versions at a local appliance store.


Water damage is one cause of mold, but everyday forces could add to your problem or prolong your remediation process. Keeping a handle on your home environment's overall moisture level stops mold before it starts. You might even feel more comfortable with drier and fresher air.

Visit us at http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information. 

Water Heater Leaks and Flooding: What To Know About the Cleanup Process

3/21/2018 (Permalink)

Hospital Flood after Water Heater break

A leaking water heater can wreak havoc in your Hyde Park, TX, home and often do so unexpectedly. Sudden, high-pressure leaks or a burst tank can flood the area and cause damage to the floors and any items you might have stored nearby. Calling in a professional flood cleanup and restoration company can help you resolve the problem, and there are a few important points about this process that you may want to know about so you can feel more confident about the condition of your home once it is complete.

Quick Response Can Be Vital

If your broken water heater is flooding your garage or utility room, the water can damage not only the floor and walls of the space but also any electrical systems that might be housed there. For example, if your fuse box is located nearby, high-pressure water leaks can cause it to short out or even damage it beyond repair. Flood technicians can address the source of the leak quickly and shut off the water before any major systems are affected.

Drying Systems May Be Put Into Place

A failed water heater can cause the humidity to increase in your utility room and ruin items that were not initially touched by water. These can include a variety of vital structures and appliances:

" Flooring
" Ceiling
" Your washer and dryer

Lowering the humidity in the area with large fans and other professional-grade drying systems can prevent these structures and items from being damaged by the humidity a leaking water heater can cause.

Flood Damage Appraisal

Once the water is removed from the area around your water heater, cleanup and restoration techs may discuss the damage with you and offer you several repair solutions, including replacing affected walls, insulation and flooring. They can also offer you advice about how to dry out wet items or whether some might need replacing.

Dealing with a broken water heater in your Hyde Park, TX, can be a frustrating task. However, being able to work with flood cleanup professionals who come to deal with the flood can help you understand the cleanup process and feel confident that the damage can be repaired.

Visit us at http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information. 

Don't Rely on Bleach for Mold

2/19/2018 (Permalink)

A lot of business owners mistakenly believe bleach is the best choice for fungus cleanup. For serious spills and messes, especially mold, it may be your go-to chemical. If this is the case, it’s time to ask yourself two questions before you reach for the bottle.

1. Will Bleach Kill Mold?

The answer isn’t a simple yes or no. On the surface, yes, bleach can kill mold. However, it is unable to reach the roots. Keep in mind that mold not only has roots, but it releases spores often. These spores can get into the air and land anywhere. Once landed, if the environment is right, more mold will grow. Chlorine cannot stop this from happening. It also can only kill what is on the surface. Therefore, while it may be able to kill some visible molds, it is not effective in the long run. You need someone with professional experience to remove mold for good.

2. What Will Get Rid of Mold for Good?

Specialists in professional remediation can be your best bet when it comes to getting rid of mold for good. They can use special cleaners and equipment to get rid of all traces of the mold, such as vacuums, special cleaners and air filters that can get rid of spores.

Fungus cleanup can be an art. It isn’t always easy to make sure that there is nothing left over, especially for someone who isn’t as familiar with it. Don’t let yourself be taken in by idea that harsh cleaners can kill all mold in Austin, TX. That is not always an effective option. If you want to make sure that you get rid of your mold infestation for good, the best thing to do is wait for professionals to handle the fungus cleanup. They have the knowledge and tools to do an effective and thorough job to cleanup mold.
Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on mold. 

Keeping Your Pet Fire Safe

2/14/2018 (Permalink)

Your pets are a part of your family, and as such, it’s only natural that you’d want to protect them in the event a fire occurs in your home. Unfortunately, many homeowners in Austin, TX fail to include their dog, cat or other pet in their family fire emergency plan, leading to heartbreaking outcomes. However, by preparing your pet for fire emergencies early on, you can keep your furry friend safe from harm. These extra precautions are sometimes as simple as:

* Taking a few common fire prevention precautions
* Training your pet to respond to your voice
* Setting up a proper safe space for your pet while you’re away.

Reducing Fire Hazards

It’s estimated that unattended pets are responsible for almost 1,000 house fires annually. Ensure that you’re not leaving any open flames, such as candles, unattended, remove your stove’s knobs while you’re away so they can’t be turned by curious paws, and consider securing your pet in a safe place while you’re not around to supervise them.

Prepare for Disasters

If a fire does start on your lot, you and your pet both need to be prepared. First, ensure that you have fire emergency supplies such as food and medication for your pet on hand. Pet preparation can also be made just a bit easier if you take the time to teach your pet to come running when they hear you call their name.

When You’re Not Home

Fires happen when you least expect them, including when you’re not at home. That’s why you need to make it easy for rescue services to help your pet if this situation does arise. Keep your pet on a collar, keep a leash nearby and secure them somewhere near the door while you’re away. Furthermore, keep your vaccination and pet ownership records in a fire box.

Preparing your pet for a fire emergency can take a bit of time and patience, but in the end, it’s well worth it if it means keeping your companion safe. Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on fire damage

How To Use a Fire Extinguisher

2/14/2018 (Permalink)

You see them in office buildings, restaurants, schools, stores and just about every type of building you visit in Austin, TX. You may even have one in your workplace. A fire extinguisher is a common tool to help put out fires. They’re handy for the common person to use before the fire gets too large and out of control. If you know how to use an extinguisher, you can act when needed and help avoid major fire damage in a kitchen fire or other similar incidents. If you’ve never been trained to operate this important device, know is the time to learn. If you can remember PASS, knowing how to use a fire extinguisher is easy.

1. Pull. The first thing you want to do when operating a fire extinguisher to put out a fire is stand at the appropriate distance. Most extinguishers have a range of 6 to 20 feet, so make sure you know how far the one you have will reach. Next, you pull the pin in the extinguisher. Once you do this, you can move to the next step.

2. Aim the nozzle at the base of the fire. Some people think the best way to attack a kitchen fire or fire somewhere else in your home or building is to spray at the top of the flames. This won’t be effective, however. You must go for the base if you hope to smother it.

3. Squeeze the trigger. To avoid major fire damage in your house or whatever building you’re located in Austin, Tx you need to act quickly. In step three, simply squeeze the trigger firmly. This will release the agent inside the extinguisher and help put out the fire.

4. Go in a sweeping motion. Don’t move the device up and down. Instead, go from side to side until you have successfully put out the fire.

When you know how to use a fire extinguisher to put out a kitchen fire or other type, you can avoid major fire damage. You’ll also have the confidence to act without delay. Visit  http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on commercial fire damage. 

What is difference between mold and mildew?

2/7/2018 (Permalink)

Is there a difference between mildew and mold?

Many people don't understand the differences between Mold and Mildew. Both of them are unsightly and need to be cleaned but there are some subtle differences.

First of all, both mold and mildew are fungi. They breakdown organic materials in order to survive. The difference is in how they grow. Mold will grow in patches and have a "fuzzy" texture. It also lays down root systems in the organic material, such as wood or paper.

On the other hand, mildew grows flat and stays together. The flatness is usually white in color but can be seen in green and brown. Mildew does not root itself in the organic material and is therefore easier to cleanup.

Call SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin if you have mold in your home.

Why does mold smell bad?

2/7/2018 (Permalink)

What is that smell?

In most cases we can smell the mold growing before we can see it. If you can smell the mold then you probably have a bigger problem. Here are some questions to ask yourself.

  1. Do I see the mold or only smell it? - If you can smell the mold but can't find it then it might be growing behind walls or under flors.
  2. Have I had a recent water loss? - Mold only grows where there has been excess water. If the water damage was left to dry you may have mold.

Mold uses air movement to spread mold spores. These spores carry mycotoxins which is what your nose recognizes as the bad smell. Therefore, if you can smell the mold then their are many spores in the air.

2 Reasons To Address Mold Immediately

1/18/2018 (Permalink)

The presence of mold leaves behind an unmistakable musty odor. Although this fungus can develop inside a house when it is simply a little too humid, it is more likely to develop after flood water damages the premises. When that flooding is accompanied by sewage loss, the contaminants only exacerbate the problem. Homeowners in Austin, Texas, should try to prevent mold growth entirely. However, if mold does develop, then you need to address it right away before a bad stench turns into something much worse.

1. Structural Damage

Mold is particularly destructive to certain materials, including gypsum board, plaster and wood. Over time, these materials may weaken and change color. You may not even see the damage if the item is painted, but the paint merely hides the mildew. The only way to ensure your home remains structurally sound is to remove all presence of mold. Certain structures may need to be replaced entirely to make sure your house is safe to live in.

2. Rapid Growth

Mold growth can get out of hand in just 24 hours. It can spread exponentially when exposed to the right conditions. Leaks, condensation and high humidity can accelerate the growth process, causing the mold to overtake entire sections of walls and flooring. Over time, this can lead to toxic black mold.

An even more dangerous aspect is that visible mold is only half the story. If you see mold, then there is a very high likelihood there is even more growing out of sight. You need someone to come out to your place immediately to ensure your house remains mold-free.

When bringing in a professional team in Austin, TX to address mold in your home, it is vital that every sign of it is removed. This includes the mold you see on the wall as well as spores that have entered the air. Without addressing the problem comprehensively, the mold growth will simply resume, sometimes in less than a day.

Visit us at http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more tips on mold remediation.

Cleaning Up After a Broken Water Heater

1/18/2018 (Permalink)

Broken water heaters lead to money spent on resolving the issue, but neglecting to resolve all issues stemming from a leaking water heater can quickly become costly. Left unsolved, water issues can evolve into appliance repairs, wall and flooring replacement and more. By following a few simple steps, you can ensure that you don’t have to pay thousands of dollars extra for your failed water heater.

1. Drying as Top Priority

If you are facing a broken water heater in Rosedale, TX your priority should be to clear out the water, then dry the affected areas. Clearing a mess from a damaged water heater can be made easier by using drain pipes and renting vacuum cleaners specially designed for water removal. You may also wish to consider renting an industrial fan to speed air flow through the affected space.

2. Cleaning Is Crucial

Water coming from a leaking water heater is usually classified by insurance specialists as Category 2 water; this kind of water is not terribly dangerous, but it can still cause health issues if the area is not cleaned. Be sure to sanitize the affected areas thoroughly to ensure that mold and other undesirables are not allowed to infect your home.

3. Calling a Professional

Finally, calling a reputable water removal professional can ease your mind and mitigate any lingering concerns. These professionals have the expertise to examine everywhere the leaked water could have affected – including underneath flooring and inside walls. So much potential damage from water issues occurs in invisible places, so it’s important to have a water removal specialist on-site.

If you’re dealing with a leaking water heater, just remember three simple steps: Dry it, clean it, and call a professional. By taking quick action to remediate water issues, you can resolve the problem without breaking the bank.

For more hot water tips visit our website at http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com.

The Facts About Mold in a Home

12/7/2017 (Permalink)

The Facts About Mold in a Home

Nearly everyone has heard scary stories of black mold infesting a home. From these stories, and from personal experience, people know that mold is unsightly, unhealthy, may have a musty odor and can cause expensive damage to a property. The term mycotoxin, which simply means any toxin present from a fungus, is enough to produce nightmares. Instead of having people’s minds roam with worry, it is good to get the facts straight. Here are four important facts about mold.

Mold Is Natural. Molds occur naturally throughout the world and are present in nearly every environment. The spores of molds are microscopic and they can enter a home through any opening. Generally, molds do not cause much problem for humans. It is mostly when a mold begins to grow in a home that it begins to be a problem.

Mold and Property Damage. As well as the possible health effects, mold in a home can be unpleasant to look at and can discharge a musty odor. It will expand in size if not treated quickly and infiltrate carpeting and air ducts. In many cases, insurance companies will not cover mold damage. Professional services may be required to utilize equipment such as a HEPA air filtration device in your home.

Mold Remediation.

It is important to work with an expert team in Austin, Texas when it comes to ridding a home of mycotoxin mold. Specialists will have the training and equipment to tackle the moisture that allows mold to grow in a home.
Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on mold.

Creating a Fire Escape Plan

12/7/2017 (Permalink)

Creating a Fire Escape Plan


The best time to formulate a fire escape plan is before there is a fire. The following four steps can help prepare you and your family for the event you hope never happens.

Draw a Floor Plan With Escape Routes

Drawing a floor plan that shows two escape routes from every room can help people visualize how they will escape, depending on the location of the fire. Use both doors and windows as exit points. Assign a primary and backup adult to each person who may need help exiting the building. Floor plans can be posted on doors as reminders.

Choose an Outdoor Meeting Place

Make sure that everyone knows where to meet and immediately goes to that location after exiting the burning structure. The meeting place should be a safe distance away and can be included on the emergency escape plan drawing.

Memorize the Emergency Phone Number

All home occupants, including children, should memorize the Austin, Texas emergency phone number and be able to call for help. They should also know the street address to help emergency responders quickly find the location.

Practice

The American Red Cross shared in its Home Fire Escape Plan that there may be just two minutes to get to safety. The organization also recommends running fire drills using each escape route and timing them to make sure occupants can exit the building within that time frame. Test smoke alarms and make sure all occupants know how they sound. Practice crawling low to the ground as if there were smoke present, and make sure each person knows to stop, drop and roll if their clothing catches fire.

You hope it never happens, but you’re prepared in case it does. Save lives by having a fire escape plan and making sure the entire household knows how to exit the building quickly and call for help. Once everyone is safe, damage assessment and restoration efforts can begin. Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on fire damage.

Tips for Cleaning up After a Home Fire

12/7/2017 (Permalink)

Tips for Cleaning up After a Home Fire

Your home in Austin, Texas is the place where your family gathers and makes memories. After a home fire, it is devastating to see the smoke damage to your once beautiful home. However, instead of reminiscing about the past, you have to get to work. After the local fire authorities say it’s safe to re-enter your home, there are a few things that increase the likelihood of successful restoration. Additionally, consult a local fire restoration company with experts in smoke cleaning who know how to handle soot damage.

1. Water Removal

Firefighters use large amounts of water to save your home from flames. Water removal is best left to the professionals as specialized knowledge and equipment is necessary to get the job done. A water pump and press extractor are the two basic items needed for removing water. The more power the water pump has, the better. With a press extractor, you might be able to save your carpets.

2. Categorizing

Next, you need to assess the smoke damage objectively and strategically. When going through your belongings, you don’t have time to get sentimental. Take photos of everything for the insurance company. Dump the cheap items and set aside the more expensive items if they are restorable. Do the same with furniture and carpets. If there’s water damage, it can be wise to just replace these items, as mold could get to them. Empty rooms to allow for a more accurate assessment of the structural damage.

3. Soot Removal

Part of smoke damage is soot, the black substance left by the smoke of the fire. The ideal cleaning agent is one that contains trisodium phosphate. To get the job done right, it’s recommended to let professionals deal with this. Restoration experts can also help you get rid of the smoke smell much more effectively than you would be able to with a box fan.

As devastating as a home fire in Austin, Texas is, it’s important to assess the damage and start the cleanup process early. Bear in mind these tips, and reach out to a restoration company for effective restoration of your home. Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on fire damage.

Preventing Further Fire Damage

10/26/2017 (Permalink)

Preventing Further Fire Damage

Fire damage tragedies are an unfortunate, and depending on the severity of the disaster, fire damage restoration should start immediately after the fire truck puts out the flames. A fire cleanup company can prevent further damage after a fire in home as well as fire in business. They can eliminate the irritating smoke smell, and if they act fast, they can avert soot damage, which stains all surfaces. Restoration companies do more than fire cleanup. They play an essential role in the restoration no matter the size or location of the building.

Fire Damage Restoration Companies

Many building owners after experiencing commercial fire damage think they can do without the services of a professional restoration company and choose to undertake fire cleanup on their own. This is not advisable. Following a fire damage on the business premises, a restoration company can work with the authorities such as the fire department. They work together throughout the restoration period. Local authorities usually investigate the cause of the fire, after which the restoration company begins to board up the gaping holes in the roof and walls to prevent unwanted parties from gaining entry into the building.

Contact the Restoration Company

Do not be like the majority of people whose only concern is to put out the fire. Prevention is better than cure. Fire cleanup experts have 24/7 emergency contacts on their websites. Ensure to issue the expert’s and the fire department’s contacts to individuals living or working in the building. It is only when the restoration experts are on the ground after a fire in home or a fire in business is put out by the fire trucks, can they prevent severe soot damage in the premises. They work alongside the authorities to determine the cause of the fire in home or the fire in business. Commercial fire damage cleanup exercises then begin by dealing with the smoke smell.

Standard Fire Damage Cleanup Procedure

Standard procedure dictates that all properties that suffered the unfortunate event of the commercial fire damage be secured. The restoration company will board up the gaping holes left where the doors, windows, roof, and walls once stood, and continue the commercial fire damage cleanup process without prying eyes from passersby.
The restoration process continues by removing and disposing of the damaged furniture that cannot be reclaimed. It is the followed by fumigation of the house to remove the smoke smell. Failure to do this could mean that the building still reeks of smoke smell after the fire cleanup is complete. Smoke damage is evident on the carpets, curtains, furniture, and fabrics.

Soot damage is another thing to be worried about after a fire in home or business. The residue that settles on the surfaces such as counter-tops, bathtubs, and tabletops could cause irreversible staining. Ensure that the restoration company works fast to prevent permanent soot damage as well as smoke damage. Commercial fire damage restoration covering smoke damage as well as soot damage requires specialized equipment in the hands of professional and experienced restoration companies.

Fire cleanup after a fire in business will require the disposing of certain items. It is important to evaluate the state of every affected item by soot damage, smoke damage as well as those with a strong smoke smell. However, it is necessary to consult a professional as well as the investigating authorities. Sometimes the restoration after fire damage is forced to wait and the experts board up the property to allow for the completion of investigations and security reasons. The restoration team will have to board up the property and allow authorities to collect evidence then begin the fire damage restoration.

Now is the time to look for fire damage restoration companies. As the adage goes, plan for the worst, but hope for the best. Ensure that the building has proper equipment to extinguish the fire in strategic locations. It helps deal with the fire before it spreads and engulfs the entire building causing extensive commercial fire damage.
Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on fire damage.

Common Causes of Flooding

9/27/2017 (Permalink)

Common Causes of Flooding

Water damage is one of the worst possible situations that can happen to a property. While other forms of damage, such as those cause by fire or winds, are always obvious and self-contained, prompting the property owner to take immediate action to remove any ongoing source of damage and begin repairing what's been destroyed, flood damage is far more insidious. A flooded home or business may not appear to be in dire circumstances. This is especially true if the source of the flooding leads to a relatively minor amount of water damage, such as that caused by a supply line break or a pipe break. This can easily fool a property owner into thinking that they can handle the restoration of the property themselves or even that they don't need to take any action at all. Both of these decisions are almost always a serious mistake.

The truth is that even small amounts of water damage can quickly spread, compromising the structural integrity of the property and causing mold and mildew formation. Flood damage can also lead to foul odors that may become virtually impossible to get rid of unless prompt action is taken to minimize the impact of the water damage.

Luckily, nearly every town in America has a professional restoration company that is able to help people through difficult flooding events. Below, we'll discuss some of the things that one might expect from a professional restoration company once they've been called to the scene of a water damage event.

The most important thing is to call in a professional restoration company


It is vital to remember that the single most important thing that the owner of a flooded home or business can do upon recognizing flood water in their home or water in their business is to call in a professional restoration company.

Water cleanup professionals will have thousands of hours of experience dealing with restoration and mitigation efforts on flooded homes and businesses. They also have the training and knowledge necessary to get the restoration and mitigation efforts right the first time. A professional water cleanup team will have heavy-duty equipment at their disposal, able to quickly tackle even the toughest restoration and mitigation requirements.

Many home and business owners are of the do-it-yourself school of property maintenance. While that is often fine for things like landscaping and painting, dealing with the mitigation of damage in a flooded home or business is not the time to start trying to save money by doing things yourself. In fact, property owners attempting to cut corners by not calling in professional water cleanup specialists is one of the chief causes of property loss due to flooding in the United States today. It is absolutely crucial that anytime a property owner detects flood water in their business or water in their home that they promptly call in the professionals.

The call is made and the cleanup team arrives


Once the call is made to the water cleanup and flood damage specialists, they will arrive at the scene within minutes. They will immediately go to the source of the supply line break or pipe break and stop the flow of any active leaks. They will also carefully inspect the area around the pipe break or supply line break, taking account of any water that may have seeped into structural components.

The team will remove standing water


Next, the team will remove any standing water in the home or water in the business. This will be done through the use of heavy-duty vacuum equipment, which can removed thousands of gallons of water in the business or water in the home per hour.

The drying process is begun


The team will then use industrial drying equipment to begin drying the premises. The area around the original pipe break or supply line break will be surrounded with specialized drying equipment. This will ensure that even hidden moisture is completely removed. At this point, all flood damage will be fully remediated.
Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on water damage.

Commercial Fire Damage and What to Know

9/27/2017 (Permalink)


Commercial Fire Damage and What to Know

There are a lot of problems that come from having fire damage in the home or business. If you have recently dealt with commercial fire damage, it is very important that you work with a fire restoration company to restore your home to order. This is something that you will find to be incredibly beneficial in many different ways. The experts will easily be able to take care of this for you, which is essential for when it comes to getting your home back on track. If you have recently dealt with fire damage or commercial fire damage, it is imperative that you call the fire restoration.

It does not matter if you have recently dealt with an electrical fire or a utility room fire, you still need to make sure that you are working with the Professionals in order to get the work done. They will be able to take care of the soot damage and smoke damage that was left behind. The smoke damage that was left behind can be a result of not having a fire sprinkler system or fire suppression system put into place. You will also find that many firefighters, after leaving with their fire trucks and fire hoses, recommend that you put in a fire sprinkler system or fire suppression system in order to ensure that your home is safe.

If you have recently dealt with an electrical fire or utility room fire, it is important that you also have an electrician come in and take care of the issues for you. You will also need a fire restoration expert who deals with commercial fire damage to install a fire sprinkler system or fire suppression system into your home or business. This is absolutely essential when it comes to the smoke damage that was left behind as well as the soot damage. You may also want to ask the firefighters who have come with their fire trucks and fire hoses what they recommend in terms of a fire sprinkler system and fire suppression system.

For anyone who has ever had fire damage in the home, it is imperative that you have experts who deal with fire restoration. You are also going to want to think about hiring a commercial fire damage professional in order to help with this type of work. They are able to handle an electrical fire or utility room fire that you have had in the home or business. They can also deal with the smoke damage that was left behind as well as soot damage.

The electrical fire and utility room fire that left behind soot damage is important for when you are hiring a fire damage expert. There are many firefighters out there who recommend that you hire a Professional Restoration company to get your home back to working order. They will use the best quality fire trucks and fire hoses to ensure that the fire is put out, but it is totally up to you to restore the damage after it has been done.

No matter what type of work you are doing, and no matter what type of fire trucks and fire hoses were used to put out the fire, it is important that restoration be done by an expert. Firefighters alone cannot take care of the restoration part for you, so it is important to hire a company local to your home that will be able to come out and deal with the issues for you. Not only is this going to save you a lot of time from having to do the work on your own, but it ensures that everything is done professionally so that your home and business is as safe as possible for you and your loved ones. Because there are so many different companies out there for you to hire, it pays to contact several of them so that you can get a few quotes before hiring any one of them.
Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on fire damage.

Professional Storm Damage Restoration

9/27/2017 (Permalink)


Professional Storm Damage Restoration

Recent floods in Texas and Florida has caused extreme damage to homes and businesses. This means that prompt storm restoration activities should begin as soon as the flood recedes. Fiver Flooding, flood water, and ground water restoration and require the expertise of an experienced storm remediation company.

However, this is not the first problem that has caused damage to property throughout the country. Things such as wind damage, hail damage, ice damage and other weather catastrophes has made home restoration a number one priority.

Recent floods in Texas and Florida has caused extreme damage to homes and businesses. This means that prompt storm restoration activities should begin as soon as the flood recedes. Fiver Flooding, flood water, and ground water restoration require the expertise of an experienced storm remediation company.

However, this is not the first problem that has caused damage to property throughout the country. Things such as wind damage, hail damage, ice damage and other weather catastrophes has made home restoration a number one priority.

Naturally, people who have faced this type of catastrophe, as a rule, face a great deal of home restoration problems. This often involves things such as roof damage (roof leak or needed roof repair), water restoration, flood water damage and other storm damage.

Winter can also cause extensive home restoration requirements. Problems can involve frozen pipes, ice damage, hail damage and roof damage. An ice dam or ice damming is another problem that can come with the winter months. An ice dam is a ridge of ice on the edge of the roof that prevents water or melting snow from draining properly.

An ice dam or ice damming can cause an extensive home restoration problem. Backed up water or melting snow goes into ceilings, walls and other interior building areas causing extensive repair costs.

Roof damage is one of the first things to be addressed when there have been weather problems. Things such as a roof leak, ice dam or ice damming, missing shingles, holes and other things can cause extensive damage if not quickly repaired. This makes it imperative to contact a storm restoration company as soon as possible after the weather clears.

Other types of weather problems a storm remediation company will address are hurricane damage, ice damage, frozen pipes, wind damage, river flooding and other types of storm damage. Weather is one of the most devastating problems for a home or business. When the building is exposed to the elements it is important to have all repairs made as soon as possible.

Ground water can be as much a problem as flood water. Ground water flooding happens when water rises above the ground and usually results in a flooded basement. Having ground water flooding removed is essential in order to avoid damage, bad odors and other problems. As a rule, a company will use a flood pump to remove the water.
This year has been one of river flooding, storm flooding, wind damage, hurricane damage, hail damage, frozen pipes and ice damage across the nation. This has caused severe hardships for families and businesses. When this kind of catastrophe occurs, it is important to contact a reliable company that specializes in storm remediation and have repairs begin as soon as possible.

Storm remediation companies have the required personnel and equipment to handle all types of storm damage with equipment such as blowers, suckers and a flood pump. They handle frozen pipes, ice damage, water restoration, roof leak and roof repair, ice damming, river flooding and other storm related problems.

Whether you are facing storm restoration because of hurricane damage, frozen pipes, an ice dam, ice damming, or a storm remediation problem, when you contact a reliable storm remediation company, they can make repairs quickly. A flood pump will remove excess water and frozen pipes can quickly be defrosted.
Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on storm damage.

The #1 Natural Disaster in The U.S.

8/29/2017 (Permalink)


The #1 Natural Disaster in The U.S.


The U.S. is a beautiful place to live, but few would argue that it doesn't have its fair share of natural disasters for homeowners to battle. Not too surprisingly, flooding is usually the number one natural disaster in the United States annually. This leaves many homeowners confronted with the possibility of flood damage in the home. Water in a home can be a shocking sight. It stands as it is and has no respect for the precious memories and possessions inside a home. Water in a business doesn't respect office furniture, either. Of all the reasons for water in a home - from a supply line break to a pipe break - flood damage remains the number one reason to call a water restoration expert.

Water damage occurs when the water from a flood spills over into a home. In very severe floods, the water in the home can reach upper levels. A flooded home quickly begins to deteriorate. Of all the water that can get in a home, flood water is the most toxic to physical objects. It contains bacteria, mud, and miscellaneous toxic chemicals picked up on its journey into the home. If you've got flood water in your home, there's no time to waste in calling a restoration company. A restoration company can assess the damage and begin mitigation immediately, making it more likely that you'll be able to salvage the precious memories and objects within the home.

How professionals address a flooded home


A flooded home will quickly fall prey to the elements. What a professional does is to carry out mitigation and assessment of the water levels in the home. They use specialized equipment such as moisture sensors to assess water damage and create a water cleanup plan. Water cleanup in a flooded home is a massive project and not something that should be taken lightly by homeowners. Flood damage is always a reason to call a professional at restoration.

Certified equipment for flood damage will be brought on the scene and used for drying, mitigation, and restoration. Industrial drying, moving, and blowing of the water damage at the scene enables professionals to provide a level of restoration that is not possible with everyday household tools. Drying can be an especially lengthy and tedious process if you attempt to go it on your own. A restoration company has the industrial grade, certified equipment to make drying go much more quickly. This reduces water damage in the home and makes water cleanup much easier.

Mitigation continues after the water cleanup is completed. Restoration is possible with industrial grade dryers and equipment that make the cleanup a success. Any leftover moisture is going to make water cleanup a failure and leave objects in the home, including flooring, susceptible to damage. Due to the weight of flood water, it's also possible to suffer other kinds of damage. You might have a pipe break or supply line break due to the weight of flood water, leaving still more damage to the home at risk. Water in a business is no different because water doesn't respect anything. It just follows its natural laws. A supply line break or pipe break is just as likely to happen when water is in business.

Call a professional water restoration company


Whether you have a supply line break or pipe break in a business, or flooding in a business or home, a restoration company is going to be your best friend in this situation. Only they have the necessary tools and knowledge to successfully handle flood water in a business or in a home. Your home is a sanctuary for you and your family. Any invasion by water should be treated seriously, especially if the culprit is dirty flood water. The moment you know that flood water has entered the home, it's time to call a restoration company.
Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on water damage.

Tips for Effective Fire Damage Restoration

8/29/2017 (Permalink)


Tips for Effective Fire Damage Restoration

Fire damage is one of the most traumatizing things that can happen to a home or other property owner. However, it is easier to manage the aftermath of the fire when you have the help of professional fire damage restoration experts. The aim of the restoration process is to assist you, and your business in going back to the state that it was in before the entire disaster happened. The restoration companies provide you with a combination of services whose aim is to bring the house back to the state it was in and the function that it served before the fire damage. Below are some tips and guidelines which can help when it comes to restoration.

Contacting the restoration company

When the firefighters have left, and indicated that the building is safe for re-entry, your next move should be contacting a restoration company. The competence of a restoration company is judged by among other things, the speed with which they react to emergency calls. They should be on the scene within at least an hour or two of contact so that they can do the board up and start the assessment and restoration.

The assessment process

The fire damage restoration company will look at some factors once they get into the place which suffered the fire in the home. These include:

• Assessing the level of smoke damage and soot damage that the house has suffered.

• Assess any associated commercial fire damage such as water damage from firefighting efforts.

• Determining whether the house needs board up services to protect it from intruders and support collapsed structures.

They will then come up with a mitigation and restoration action plan depending on their findings.

The fire cleanup process

After the board up has been done and a tarp has been placed on the roof, the fire damage restoration team starts the fire cleanup process. First, if water was used to extinguish the fire, they will extract in order to prevent further complications such as mold damage coming up. Then, the fire cleanup process will be focused on the smoke damage and soot damage in the home. Tarps will be placed on the floor to ensure that when the soot damage is being washed off the walls, it doesn’t stain the floor.

Dealing with smoke smell after fire damage is the next step. Smoke smell is usually left behind on surfaces and upholstery and even clothes. The restoration company will either perform the fire cleanup and deodorization to remove the smoke smell, or recommend someone who can do it. Note that taking your clothes to the regular dry cleaner after a fire could set the smoke smell in your clothes.

Fire in home restoration

When the smoke damage and soot damage has been resolved, the fire in home and fire in business restoration experts will start the fire damage restoration process. The commercial fire damage experts will remove the board up support, repaint the walls which were blackened and stained by the soot, replace the dry walls that got burned and reinstall doors and windows that could have been ruined by the fire in business. If the roof was affected by the fire, they will replace the affected parts or call in an expert to help you with the installation of a new roof.

In addition to the restoration, the commercial fire damage experts will recommend mitigation measures that will improve your preparedness for a fire in the future. For instance, they will help you install better quality smoke damage and fire alarms. They will also recommend the installation of extinguishers which could help in future in case a fire in business starts, and before it turns into a calamity.

Those are the things that you need to understand about fire in business, fire damage and the role of the restoration company in dealing with a fire in home or commercial fire damage. The competence of the restoration company you choose for fire damage restoration will determine your satisfaction with the process.
Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on fire damage.

How Professional Mold Removal is Done

8/29/2017 (Permalink)

How Professional Mold Removal is Done

Mold growth behind walls is as a result of damp conditions around a particular space. Mold in home and commercial mold damage may be caused by leaky roofs and pipes that are not repaired in time. Hence, they create damp conditions that encourage mold growth. To prevent mold damage, mold in home, and commercial mold damage, the fungus must be removed before spreading extensively and causing permanent destruction.

Mold growth behind wall is very common, and the level of contamination varies. Therefore, different methods are applied to deal with mold growth behind wall. Effective mold removal of mold in home and commercial mold damage can be done only by a certified mold restoration company.

Why Mold Removal is Necessary

Mold removal is required for the following reasons:

a) Mildew Produces a Smelly Odor

A house that smells clean and fresh is attractive and pleasant to any person who visits it. However, mold growth, especially in a closed space, produces a smelly odor that infuses the whole environment. This smelly odor might not be tolerable to you as it may even cause embarrassment in case you host visitors.

b) Mold may Cause Structural Damage

Mold growth behind wall and on other surfaces may cause structural damage. If mitigation is not done in time, mold damage and dry rot may infuse the structural core of the building, causing extensive damage. Structural damage may render a building inhabitable and may even cause the building to be torn down, which may result in heavy financial losses. Therefore, to prevent this problem, remediation must be done in time.

In case you already have it growing in your house, you can procure the services of a restoration company to get rid of the mold.

Professional Mold Removal

The following are the steps followed by a restoration company when doing mildew remediation:

a) Access the Source of the Moisture

Mold growth and its spread are caused by moisture. Before the mitigation of the spread of mold, the restoration company starts by finding the source of the moisture that is responsible for the growth and spread of the fungus such as leaking plumbing lines. This source is then turned off to prevent any subsequent growth of the mold growth.

b) Calculate the Extent of the Mold Damage

You cannot treat what you don’t understand and, therefore, the professionals handling the mitigation process have to calculate the extent of the mildew damage. More often than not, the extent of the damage may be beyond what can be seen on the surface. By finding out the extent of the contamination, the professionals will know how to go about the restoration process.

c) Create a Remediation Plan

After finding out the extent of the damage, the professionals then create a remediation plan of how they can go about the mitigation. There are different kinds of mold, including dry rot and black mold. These mold types are documented and the remediation plan for each of them, including the resources and manpower to be used, is created.

For example, black mold involves a lot of patience and investment in protective gear. This is because black mold is a relatively more extensive than other types of mold. Dry rot, on the other hand, affects wooden surfaces mainly. Therefore, the method used to restore a surface affected by dry rot would be different from the method of restoring surfaces affected by black mold.

d) Remediate the Contaminated Surfaces to Prevent Mold Damage

The remediation of the contaminated surfaces is then done. This should be done carefully to avoid exposure to both the occupiers of the building and to the person cleaning up the mold. The affected material should be removed and the source of the moisture suppressed.

e) Deodorization

After the fungus has been removed, deodorization is done. Deodorization is the removal of the smelly odor that is as a result of the growth of the mold. Also, deodorization is done to ensure that no fibers are left floating around. Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on mold.

Steps to Achieving Superb Water Damage Restoration

7/25/2017 (Permalink)


Steps to Achieving Superb Water Damage Restoration

Water damage restoration is a multi-step that requires the help of trained water damage experts. Here are some few steps to effective water damage restoration:

Initiate a visual inspection

It's important that you have a certified restoration company to conduct an initial assessment. This is important in evaluating the right action required to reverse the effects of water damage that might have resulted from the supply line break. Once it's determined that there are no safety hazards, the contents need to be secured and the mitigation process initiated.

The water extraction

Ensuring effective containment of water resulting from pipe break and the resulting flooding water in business or at home should be a top priority in water damage mitigation. Water cleanup should be the next step, and this involves removal of wet materials such as toys, clothing, pillow, and throw rugs from the affected areas. Once the water is extracted from your flooded home, technicians should remove any wet surfaces on the floors, ceiling, and walls – this will expedite the drying process.

Stabilizing and drying

Once the extraction and water cleanup is done, the drying process can now begin. It's important for commercial grade equipment to be used in such a process and this can include wet floor drying systems, dehumidifiers, and air movers. Also, the environment needs to be monitored every day and the progressive results documented. The restoration company also needs to know that moisture control is essential in preventing growth and that drying should take at least 2 to 4 days depending on the materials impacted and the scene of the flooded home.

Reassessment of the damage

Once the structural damage resulting from water in a home is complete, the restoration company should conduct another inspection to get rid of any hidden pockets of moisture that can result in mold growth or water related damage. Once the mitigation of flood damage that resulted from water in a home is done, then the structural materials need replacement reconstruction. This is critical in ensuring that your once-flooded home is healthy, safe, and restored back to its original state before the flood damage.

Recovering from flood damage

There is nothing as frustrating as coming home after work or from a vacation to find a wading pool in your house that's resulted from the supply line break. It's therefore important to start the water cleanup process of the water in a home as soon as possible. These steps will help homeowners as well as the restoration company to keep the flood damage at a minimum:

If your flooded home resulted from supply line break that caused soaking of the drywall, then it's important that you remove the foot above the watermark and discard. If this happened to your business, then the resulting water in business need to be drained out of the walls by drilling holes close to the floors and removing the baseboards.

Pipe break is one of the root causes of flooded homes, and it's important that water cleanup starts by getting rid of any contaminated materials such as wood by-products and drywall that results from the flooded water in business or at home.

Whether the water in business or your home led to supply line break or pipe break, it's important that you move items such as furniture and get rid of the wet or moldy carpet.

If your central heating came in contact with flooded water as a result of pipe break, they should be checked by an expert.

If you have food products that came in contact with water in a home, then they should be thrown, unless they were stored in water tight containers.

The overall aim in any mitigation effort is to restore your home or business to its original state after the restoration. That's why it's a good idea to contact a reputable restoration professional for a perfect finish.
Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on water damage.

DIY Fire Cleanup is Never a Good Idea

7/25/2017 (Permalink)


DIY Fire Cleanup is Never a Good Idea

Professional fire damage restoration is important after this disaster occurs at your property. Although it is tempting to handle the task of fire cleanup on your own, there are far too many risks and dangers to go it alone. Professionals ensure both your health and safety are maintained while getting your property back in operable condition. There are many other projects
suitable for a DIY gig, but this is one that is best left to the professionals.

Is DIY Fire Restoration for Fire Damage Okay?

DIY is great for many projects around the house, but fire damage isn't included on that list. You feel rewarded and accomplished after you've made a repair without any assistance from the professionals. But, fire cleanup is a job that demands the touch of a professional. A fire leaves a great amount of fire
damage behind, and it all must be properly cleaned before you're able to get on with life.

Smoke damage isn't removed from any surface easily. The fire damage restoration company has professional strength cleaners that reduce difficulty of removing the damage. What about soot damage? If you think smoke
damage is hard to remove, you haven't tried removing soot damage from the walls of a home. Professionals have the knowledge to remove smoke damage and soot damage with ease.

If you aren't careful, fire damage can cause issues that make it difficult to breath or cause other concerns. The smoke smell is enough to cause coughing and difficulty breathing for many people. If you want to avoid the smoke smell and potential damages it causes a professional fire cleanup company is one call away. They'll provide the fire damage restoration that you need, eliminating smoke smell and many other issue. Don't let the smoke smell bring you down!

Professionals work promptly to cleanup messes left behind after a fire in home or a fire in business. They understand the chaos that has erupted after a fire in business or a fire in home, and lend their shoulder to
you by providing a quick, efficient cleanup job at a great price. When professionals access the scene, you can rest assured the job is done the right way, the first
time around.

Board Up Service

Professionals board up windows and walls if the structure is unsafe to enter. This is true whether a fire in business or a fire in home. Board up is commonly performed after a fire. The board up should stay until the entire scene is cleaned. They remove soot and smoke, and salvage any items possible to save. It is disheartening to lose so much in a fire. Restoration companies strive to help you save more.

Choose a Fire Restoration Company

Choosing a restoration company for fire cleanup is the most important task at-hand after a fire. Many companies offer fire cleanup services, but some fail to provide efficient services. Avoid such a scenario and choose a restoration company that offers experience and expertise; a good reputation; competitive pricing; and who stands behind their work. If you need commercial fire damage cleanup, be sure to hire a company that specializes in this job.

You can learn more about the best companies with a quick Internet search. Furthermore, you can ask friends, family, and others for a reference to a great fire restoration company. Oftentimes word of mouth
provides the best results when you're looking for a great company, so do not be shy and ask a few people that you know.

Professional Restoration Services Needed

Fire damage restoration minimizes the aches and pains associated with residential or commercial fire damage. Professionals clean the area so you can get back to life as normally as possible after the unthinkable occurs. If you have a fire in home or a fire in business, professionals come to the rescue just in the knick of time. Commercial fire damage is just as easy to handle as residential cleanup, as long as a commercial fire damage company is hired. They clean the house, remove smoke damage, remove soot damage, and much more. Do not attempt a DIY cleanup job after a fair in your home or business when professionals are there to get the job done.
Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on fire damage.

Steps in Professional Mold Remediation

7/25/2017 (Permalink)

Steps in Professional Mold Remediation

Mold are fungi which grow in the form of multicellular thread-like structures called hyphae. Mold in homes favor warm, damp and humid conditions for growth and reproduce my making spores. Disturbing mold is disastrous as it leads to spreading of the spores which can survive even in extreme environmental conditions, such as dry conditions.Disturbing spores can distribute them and enhance mold growth. In squeezed corners due to the favorable conditions, mold growth behind walls is rampant.

Black mold is a type of mold that which releases spores when it feeds on organic materials in the households such as drywall, carpet, insulation or sub-flooring that have been exposed to moisture. One can tell the presence of black mold by the presence of a musty, smelly odor, like dirt and rotten leaves. Black mold is usually greenish-black but may also appear grayish with a sooty, powdery texture. The only way to distinguish black mold from other mold/fungus species is by examination under a microscope.

Dry rot is a type of fungi that cause damage to timber and is considered one of the most mold damaging destroyers of wood construction materials. For growth of the dry rot, it needs a suitable food base, in this case, timber. Extensive growth of the fungus produces fruiting bodies that release spores that spread and proliferate. Dry rot often grows near ventilation shafts which show a preference for concentrated oxygen. Water is the major condition for the dry rot to thrive hence that is taken as its vulnerability. The primary measures for the fungi mitigation is;
• Locating and repairing the source of water causing the dry rot.
• Promoting rapid drying conditions in the affected buildings.
The effects of dry rot can be remedied by;
• Removing all or portions of the infested wood.
• Replacing the removed wood with pre-treated wood
Mildew is a thin dusting of black or gray growth produced by mold appearing on natural fabrics such as linen, silk and cotton, and occasionally walls. It also decolorizes paper and leather. Mildew presence is prevented by having a dehumidifier in the room to remove moisture and thereby preventing mildew spores from growing.

Mold damage

Molds produce irritating substances which act as allergens for sensitive individuals. Signs of molds in a home include allergic symptoms, mold growth also produces smelly odor, seeing signs of mold growth behind walls and in other hidden places.

Mold remediation and mitigation

The mold in homes and commercial mold damage remediation depends on the intensity of mold spores; they include several steps:
i. The first step for mold remediation and mitigation involves contacting restoration company representatives who determine the necessary equipment, resources, and personnel required for deodorization (where needed), mold removal and control. This is particularly helpful when dealing with commercial mold damage.
ii. Inspection and mold damage assessment.
iii. Mold damage containment and mitigation procedures and remediation to prevent the spread of mold in homes. Containment procedures can also be applied effectively in the case of commercial mold damage. Guidance by qualified restoration company representatives is critical.
iv. Dust suppression and deodorization, done by misting the contaminated areas.
v. Air is the filtered to capture mold spores in the air.
vi. The mold and mold infested materials are then removed and kept away from walls to avert further mold growth behind walls.
vii. Cleaning contents and belongings such as clothing, curtains, and furniture are done. A HEPA vacuum is used to clean all surfaces. Deodorization is also important as it reduces the smelly odors and makes the environment habitable.
viii. Drying the cleaned and repaired items thoroughly.
ix. Repair and replacement of the removed materials with clean materials free from mold damage.
x. A visibility test is done. All areas should be visibly free from contamination, that is, the absence of dirt and dust means no fungus.
xi. Searching is done to check any recurrent water damage, mildew and mold damage. It is best done by a skilled restoration company representative.
Mold removal.
i. Sanding moldy wood; since it is sometimes difficult to completely remove mold from wood as it is somewhat porous. Experts sometimes sand the wood to fasten mold removal.
ii. Non-porous surfaces such as sinks and tubs can be scrubbed using an antimicrobial cleaner to aid in mold removal.
iii. Building materials and furniture that has been infested and cannot be salvaged should be discarded as ordinary construction waste.
iv. Wet vacuums can be used to dry water from floors, carpets, and hard surfaces. Corners and leaking sewer piping should be given particular attention thus preventing mold growth behind walls.
v. Restoration using techniques to capture microscopic mold spores and the smelly odor and other building materials, several deodorization restoration company staff may apply deodorization to eliminate offensive odors and prevent further commercial mold damage and mold growth.
Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on mold.

The Aftermath of a Storm

6/20/2017 (Permalink)


The Aftermath of a Storm

Storm damage is not without a long list of misconceptions, including the very mistaken belief it’s only dangerous if it’s major flood damage. The truth is even the smallest amount of damage from water is potentially hazardous, and water cleanup must be immediate. When a person finds water in the home or water in the business, it’s already damaging despite the small amount. Restoration is a must, and mitigation cannot wait in a situation like this. It’s time to break down the facts about water in the home, water in the business, drying and water cleanup as it pertains to home and business owners alike.

Not All Flood Damage is Covered

The simple truth is not all water or flood damage is covered by homeowner’s insurance policies. Unless a homeowner does serious checking and takes the time to read the contract they sign prior to signing it, they might not have coverage for water cleanup and the damage caused. Many water protection policies are separate additions to a standard policy, which leaves some home and business owners in financial trouble when water damage occurs.

Flood damage is different than other water damage from a storm or a leaking pipe or sewage issues, which is why homeowners and business owners must take the time to carefully read through insurance policies before signing on the dotted line.

Water Cleanup Must Occur Right Away

Some people imagine they have a few days to get things in order before they must begin the water cleanup and drying process, but it’s not true. Water damage is dangerous, and it takes but a few hours for it to allow mold growth to occur. If there is water in the home or water in the office, owners must get a restoration specialist out immediately. Mitigation is best when it occurs immediately following damage from water. The first step after identifying water in the home or water in the business is to call for mitigation and restoration. The drying process is very specific, and cleanup takes some time.

Not All Water is Created Equal

It’s a safe bet that no one should enter a home or business where water is present for several reasons. The first is live power sources make the situation too dangerous. The second reason is not all water is created equal. If the damage is from flood damage living next door to an ocean or lake, chances are good it’s safe water to wade in once the power is turned off. However, water damage that comes from a local sewage treatment center or other unknown sources could contain a myriad of contaminants teeming with bacteria that can cause serious issues. Not all water is created equal, and you never know what might be lurking in your water.

It's not uncommon for someone to find water in the home following a terrible storm only to find living creatures in the water. Those who live in the south should be very aware of living creatures such as venomous snakes such as water moccasins and even alligators nesting in homes. They like water, and many of them have been displaced as a result of hurricanes or tropical storms. A home filled with water is inviting.

Airing the Building Out Works

Perhaps the biggest misconception is in regard to handling this problem without the help of a professional. Water damage requires much more than opening windows and putting fans on the floor. It requires special equipment to properly handle the drying process. If any water is missed, mold becomes a problem, and everything else becomes worse from that point on. It makes the entire situation more expensive, more dangerous, and more stressful whether it's water in the business or the home.

Finding water at home or in the office is never a good sign, especially if it’s not due to a flood or other easily explained issue. It could be a plumbing issue, a roof issue, or even a sewage issue. The safest thing to do is call the professionals immediately after you call your insurance company to report this claim. It's imperative to seek restoration and mitigation from a professional source for the best outcome.
Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on storm damage.

Five Things That You Should Do If You Suffer Fire Damage

6/19/2017 (Permalink)


Five Things That You Should Do If You Suffer Fire Damage

If there is fire damage and/or smoke damage at a home or business, the repair process can seem daunting. However, these five steps can start the repair process:

1. Don't Let The Soot Settle:


The soot damage can be just as serious as the fire damage. Luckily, soot damage is much less likely to occur if the soot isn't allowed to settle. Here are several steps to take to repair smoke damage:

Remove soot with soap and water. In some cases, it's possible clean off the outside of the house using a hose.
Get Rid Of Soot In The Air: A HEPA filter can ensure that fine particles of soot are removed from the air. A fan can also be used to blow soot particles out of the house.
Consider a dry cleaning sponge for certain surfaces.
Thoroughly launder bedding or linens that were in the house at the time of the fire.
Use a high efficiency vacuum to get rid of soot that has settled on carpets and floors.



Despite the fact that it's possible to begin to clean up soot damage on your own, always seek professional assistance for smoke damage in a home or commercial fire damage. Also, don't make hasty decisions when it comes to repairing the smoke damage. Improperly repairing smoke damage can cause serious damage to a home.

2. Take Steps To Minimize The Smoke Smell:


The smoke smell can linger in the air for weeks. Getting rid of it can be much more difficult than repairing soot damage. One way to reduce the smoke smell somewhat is to use a deodorizer. In addition, an air purifier may help to reduce the smoke smell considerably. This is particularly important for those who suffer a fire in business.

3. Restore The Structure:


If there is a fire in home or fire in business, one of the most important parts of fire damage restoration is fixing any structural issues. While some structural damage from a fire in home or fire in business may be immediately apparent, some damage is harder to detect. However, these subtle forms of structural damage from a fire in home or fire in business can wreak havoc on the building. Therefore, it is essential to have the structure inspected following the fire. Unfortunately, it can be expensive to repair structural damage to a home or commercial fire damage that's structural in nature.

4. Get Professional Assistance:


It's important that to professional assistance after a fire in home. Fire damage restoration experts will be able to be able to ensure that no important parts of the repair process are neglected. Furthermore, fire damage restoration services are often covered by your home insurance company.

Always make sure that customers have had good experiences with the fire cleanup company. Furthermore, make sure that the professional(s) are certified by the IIRC. The IIRC is well known for certifying professionals that restore homes that have suffered fire damage. In addition, ensure that the company has been in business for a long period of time. For those who suffer commercial fire damage, it's important to find a company that specializes in repairing commercial fire damage.

5. Inform Your Insurance Company:


Fire damage restoration services are often covered by home insurance plans, and it is essential to contact a insurance company immediately following the fire damage. While some home insurance companies may not cover the whole cost of fire cleanup, they still are likely to cover a portion of the fire cleanup cost. Many home insurance companies allow customers to contact them 24/7 by telephone or contact with them via online chat. Damage will be more severe if the fire cleanup is delayed.
Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on fire damage.

Simple Tips for Preventing Water Damage

6/19/2017 (Permalink)


Simple Tips for Preventing Water Damage

Water damage is among the most dangerous and devastating things that can happen to anyone’s home or office. Water cleanup is not a simple process, and restoration by a professional is what’s required when anyone finds water in the home or water in the business. Water damage causes serious consequences for home and business owners, and mitigation is not an option. The best way to deal with water cleanup and water in the home, water in the business, and mitigation is to prevent water damage before it occurs. It’s not always possible to prevent water damage from occurring, specifically when it applies to flood damage and other storm damage. It is easy to prevent damage from requiring water cleanup, restoration, mitigation, and drying by preventing it from occurring when it’s unrelated to storm damage.

Flood Damage and Drying

Flood damage is not easy to control. Water in the home or water in the business that occurs as the result of a storm and subsequent flood damage is all but impossible to prevent. Home and business owners can try to keep water from getting into their home or business by laying sandbags at the doors and utilizing other techniques to prevent water from entering a dwelling during a tropical storm, hurricane, or when storm surge is a problem, but it’s almost impossible to control what happens.

Anyone who finds water in the home or water in the business following a storm despite their best efforts to prevent water entry must tackle water cleanup right away. Restoration and mitigation must occur as soon as it’s safe to enter the building. The drying process should occur no more than 24 to 48 hours after the water enters the building, though drying should really begin sooner for the best results. It takes virtually no time for damage to occur as a result of water damage, which is why restoration must occur immediately.

Preventing Leaks and Floods at Home

There’s not much anyone can do about mother nature, but there are a few things home and business owners can do to prevent water from damaging their buildings due to leaks and other issues. The easiest way to prevent water from damaging the home is to immediately stop any leaks. Home or business owners who notice a leaking pipe should immediately tackle the project. It might seem unimportant to handle a leaking faucet right away, but it’s often the thing that prevents worse damage from occurring. It might look like a leaking faucet, but it could be the result of a much bigger leak elsewhere.

Anyone who travels for long periods of time should take it upon themselves to shut off the main water valve in their home or business when they’re away and no one is present. This can prevent the catastrophe of a major leak or water damage when a dwelling is empty for an extended period of time.

It’s also helpful to maintain a regular schedule with the plumber and the septic company. When it’s time to have the septic tank drained, home and business owners should act quickly and efficiently. Delaying this kind of project could cause sewage to back up in the home or office, and this kind of water cleanup is far worse than any other.

Preventing leaks, damage, and other water or liquid from causing issues in the home or office is the best way to handle damage. Mitigation and restoration are required if any water gets into a home or office, though. Inadequate handling of this kind of damage, and inadequate drying or cleanup can result in far more damage, more expensive repairs, and even full replacement of walls and floors. It’s not worth the price home or business owners pay to tackle this project without the help of a professional.
Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on water damage.

The Steps to Take After Water Damage Occurs

6/19/2017 (Permalink)


The Steps to Take After Water Damage Occurs

Flood damage, a burst pipe, or any other form of water in the home or water in the business calls for immediate action. Many home and business owners mistakenly assume they can handle whatever water damage occurs in small doses on their own, but this couldn’t be further from the truth. Water in the home or water in the business is dangerous no matter the source. Many assume flood damage is all that requires immediate water cleanup and restoration. It’s all damage from water that requires immediate mitigation. The smallest ongoing leak is enough to cause more water damage than most people realize, and it requires the assistance of professional water cleanup, restoration, and mitigation services. If any homeowner or business owner finds water in the home or business, there are proper steps to take to ensure water cleanup and the drying process are handled accordingly.

Call for Help

No amount of water damage is safe. Water in the home and water in the business in any amount is dangerous, and it can lead to much larger problems. To sum it up rather quickly, any amount of water damage can cause mold to form almost immediately. Mold only needs a few hours to spread rapidly, and leaving the water cleanup too long can result in the immediate need to replace walls, floors, and it can cause thousands of additional dollars in damage. Once a homeowner finds water in the home or a business owner finds water in the business, it’s time to call for professional drying services and remediation.

Turn Off Electricity

One of the biggest mistakes anyone makes when they find water in the home or water in the business is walking in without proper permission. The restoration and mitigation process must wait until there is no power in the building. Standing water and electricity are not a good mixture, and it’s imperative the power is turned off prior to anyone entering a building with any water.

Cleanup

Immediately after calling for professional mitigation, it’s necessary home and business owners begin the cleanup process. Water cleanup cannot wait, and the drying process must begin immediately. When it’s safe to enter a home or business with water damage, home and business owners must begin removing their personal belongings. The best place to put them is in a garage or on a driveway where they have a chance to begin the drying process.

One tip for all home and business owners to remember is they should not remove their own flooring or walls until professionals arrive. This is a job left to the professionals, and it might turn out it’s not even necessary. This is why it’s imperative to call for help to find out what must be done and in what order.

Call Insurance

Homeowners and business owners must call their insurance company as soon as flood damage or other water damages their home or office. An adjuster must come out to assess the damage to file a claim to get financial help your way sooner rather than later. It’s important to call for mitigation first, but it’s also important everyone remembers to call their insurance agent next. If there is storm damage, it might mean waiting a little longer than usual to get an adjuster on site as many other homes and businesses might also require extensive water cleanup.

There is no time to wait to seek water restoration and cleanup following a storm, a burst pipe, or even sewage backup. It takes very little time for a simple leak to cause so may expensive problems it leaves home and business owners in shock. Call immediately, and do nothing until professionals give the green light to enter a building when any flood damage or other damage has occurred in a home or in an office. It's imperative homeowners and business owners follow these strict instructions.
Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on water damage.

What Does Commercial Fire Damage Restoration Entail: Services Offered

6/19/2017 (Permalink)


What Does Commercial Fire Damage Restoration Entail: Services Offered

Fire does not discriminate. It is, therefore, practically part of life to experience a fire in home or business incidences. However, experiencing it first hand and watching your home or property go up in flames can be a traumatizing affair. Sometimes after the fire damage, even looking at what you once called home is unbearable. With most of your prized and sentimentally valuable possessions torn apart, gaping wall holes and an undying smoke smell, it is understandable why you would call for professional help in fire cleanup.
However, before engaging the services of any of the commercial fire restoration experts available, it is advisable that you first consider what an ideal fire, soot damage, and smoke damage cleanup mean to them. Here is a breakdown of some of the most basic services that should be included in a fire in business or home cleanup process on fire damage restoration.

1. Fire damage cleanup

In the aftermath of a fire in business or home, most of the salvaged household items and furniture are either waterlogged or soot damaged. The walls and ceilings are especially the most affected. A professional fire cleanup exercise, therefore, involves combing of any traces of soot damage from the house interior as well as from the households and office furniture not severed by the fire.
A qualified team of fire damage cleaners can relieve you the emotional pain you would have to endure should you consider handling the cleanup personally. With experience, they have also mastered impressive smoke damage and soot damage skills that restore your items to their original state before the damage.

2. Odor removal

One of the most painful reminders of the fire damage ordeal is the smoke smell that hangs long after the fire has been put off. A good fire damage restoration expert understands this and uses every means necessary to eradicate the smoke smell. You would be pleased to know that they do not just deodorize the premise; they trace the smoke smell source and eradicate it from there, especially for commercial fire damage.

3. Demolition and disposal of building materials and reconstructions

Watching sections or your entire home or office fall to rubble after a fire in home or business incident, though sometimes necessary, can be devastating. A good reconstruction company understands this and, therefore, carries out demolition process selectively while trying to maintain the structural integrity of the home or business. In most cases, if you so wish, the company can also offer reconstruct the house and accessorize it to its pre-fire in business or home appeal.

4. Pressure washing the building and sidewalks

Fire cleanup and damage restoration would never be complete without pressure washing the floors and adjacent street sidewalks after commercial fire damage. These suffer the blunt of the fire damage as most of the burning debris from the fire in home fall on the house floor and outside on the sidewalks. While the two might not catch fire, they suffer soot and smoke damage with lots of burnt debris heaving up on them. These can only be cleaned through the high pressure washing. After the cleanup, commercial fire damage restoration experts are able to determine the magnitude of their damage and recommend an appropriate reconstruction course after the commercial fire damage caused by fire in business.

5. Reconstruction of plumbing fixtures

Sometimes commercial fire damage might have affected the entire building but the heat it generates can have a severe impact on the usually plastic or synthetic plumbing pipes behind the walls. What happens when a smoke and soot damage reconstruction company hurriedly cleans up the place and repaints without taking into consideration loose plumbing fixtures that are either too weak to hold much pressure or are already leaking? They leave the restoration process half-finished. Therefore, when settling on a fire cleanup or a commercial fire damage restoration company, pick an outfit with a proven track record of attention to detail.

Surviving a fire in home or business can be quite agonizing. That’s the reason you need a competent fire in business damage restoration company to help you get your premises back in order. The preferred company should be able to offer stellar fire cleanup services that include soot and smoke damage restoration as well as a permanent solution in the eradication of the smoke smell.
Visit
The Steps to Take After Water Damage Occurs
Flood damage, a burst pipe, or any other form of water in the home or water in the business calls for immediate action. Many home and business owners mistakenly assume they can handle whatever water damage occurs in small doses on their own, but this couldn’t be further from the truth. Water in the home or water in the business is dangerous no matter the source. Many assume flood damage is all that requires immediate water cleanup and restoration. It’s all damage from water that requires immediate mitigation. The smallest ongoing leak is enough to cause more water damage than most people realize, and it requires the assistance of professional water cleanup, restoration, and mitigation services. If any homeowner or business owner finds water in the home or business, there are proper steps to take to ensure water cleanup and the drying process are handled accordingly.

Call for Help

No amount of water damage is safe. Water in the home and water in the business in any amount is dangerous, and it can lead to much larger problems. To sum it up rather quickly, any amount of water damage can cause mold to form almost immediately. Mold only needs a few hours to spread rapidly, and leaving the water cleanup too long can result in the immediate need to replace walls, floors, and it can cause thousands of additional dollars in damage. Once a homeowner finds water in the home or a business owner finds water in the business, it’s time to call for professional drying services and remediation.

Turn Off Electricity

One of the biggest mistakes anyone makes when they find water in the home or water in the business is walking in without proper permission. The restoration and mitigation process must wait until there is no power in the building. Standing water and electricity are not a good mixture, and it’s imperative the power is turned off prior to anyone entering a building with any water.

Cleanup

Immediately after calling for professional mitigation, it’s necessary home and business owners begin the cleanup process. Water cleanup cannot wait, and the drying process must begin immediately. When it’s safe to enter a home or business with water damage, home and business owners must begin removing their personal belongings. The best place to put them is in a garage or on a driveway where they have a chance to begin the drying process.

One tip for all home and business owners to remember is they should not remove their own flooring or walls until professionals arrive. This is a job left to the professionals, and it might turn out it’s not even necessary. This is why it’s imperative to call for help to find out what must be done and in what order.

Call Insurance

Homeowners and business owners must call their insurance company as soon as flood damage or other water damages their home or office. An adjuster must come out to assess the damage to file a claim to get financial help your way sooner rather than later. It’s important to call for mitigation first, but it’s also important everyone remembers to call their insurance agent next. If there is storm damage, it might mean waiting a little longer than usual to get an adjuster on site as many other homes and businesses might also require extensive water cleanup.

There is no time to wait to seek water restoration and cleanup following a storm, a burst pipe, or even sewage backup. It takes very little time for a simple leak to cause so may expensive problems it leaves home and business owners in shock. Call immediately, and do nothing until professionals give the green light to enter a building when any flood damage or other damage has occurred in a home or in an office. It's imperative homeowners and business owners follow these strict instructions. http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on fire damage.

The Cleanup Process After Discovering Mold

6/19/2017 (Permalink)


The Cleanup Process After Discovering Mold

Molds are a common problem in many commercial and residential buildings across the country. The often leave a smelly odor in the houses where they grow, and deodorization is necessary. Places that are commonly affected by mold damage include framings, walls, carpets, tackles, and strips. One can notice them through their smelly odor and a powdery white fore. The growth of mildew and fungus is mostly caused by excessive moisture. Homeowners who are affected by this problem need to seek professional help from commercial mold damage experts who can help in remediation to prevent further contamination.

Mold removal needs to be done correctly to avoid more damage. The growth of fungus and mildew can be controlled by using fungicides and cleaning the area to stop their future development. Individuals who do not wish to hire commercial mold damage professionals to help in the mitigation of molds in a home can follow the following steps.

1. Checking for the Presence of Fungus and Molds.

Homeowners need to carry out a thorough inspection to find mildew in any visible and hidden spaces. A humidity meter, moisture meter, and hygrometer can be used in detecting the presence of molds in invisible areas. Individuals can also notice their smelly odor. The first step towards mitigation is determining that places that are infested.

2. Containing the molds.

The parts that are infested should be covered with a plastic bag that is about 6mm thick prevent the movement of spores, which may contaminate the rest of the house. This step is crucial in remediation to avoid more damage, which may lead to the hiring of commercial mold damage professional.

3. Covering the Body to Avoid Contamination.

Anyone conducting mold removal needs to be covered with a breathing mask that has excellent organic vapor filters (P 100). One should also be in vinyl gloves, a protective body suit, and boots.

4. Utilize Proper Enzymes in Treatment.

The most common enzyme that is used in mold mitigation is Sporicidin Disinfectant Solution (SDS). The chemical can either be sprayed or use a fogging machine to fog the entire building. SDS is one of the leading disinfectant cleaners that have gained the approval of the U.S Environment Protection Agency. It is the best for mitigation of bacteria, fungi, and mold damage by hindering their development.

5. Clean using a Vacuum Cleaner.

Cleaning using high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) scrubbers is essential after spraying enzymes. The HEPA machine exerts a negative pressure that helps in collecting fungus and mold spore. One can also seek help from commercial mold damage professionals if it was difficult to find a HEPA vacuum.

6. Physically eliminating the Molds.

Mold damage that is visible on surfaces can be removed by using equipment such as sanding blocks and wire brushes. Carpeting and curtains can be washed if one feels that the mold damage that has been caused in not serious.

7. Dump all the Moldy Stuff Well.

Infested household commodities and other material should be well-disposed after mold removal. They can be carried in a thick sealed plastic bag. The bag’s exterior should be cleaned with hydrogen peroxide to avoid contaminating other parts of the house during transportation. This prevents future growth of the mold in a home.

8. Covering Timber with Paint.

After eliminating molds in a home, all wood surfaces that are exposed should be painted and coated with latex enamel paint. The last layer of paint should be mixed with a fungicide such as Tim-Bor, which eliminates mildew and insects. The smelly odor that is left in the room can be removed through deodorization.

9. Ensure HVAC Ducts are cleaned.

The presence of molds in a home leads to contamination of heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems. Cleaning the HVAC Ducts ensures that there is proper air circulation, and therefore, prevents smelly odors. Disinfection and deodorization should also be conducted as a remediation precaution.

The above procedure of mold removal and remediation can be helpful for people who want to ensure that their houses are free of mildew and fungi. Deodorization of houses can be done using citrus aromas.
Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on mold cleanup.

Flood Damage. What Happens Next?

6/16/2017 (Permalink)

Flood Damage. What Happens Next?

Have storm and flood damage in your home or business? If you have experienced a water or flood damage in your home or business, water cleanup needs to be implemented. Time is of the essence when you are dealing with water in home or water in business. Call a water cleanup and flood damage mitigation professional right away.

Water or flood damage restoration professionals will arrive quickly to restore your property back to preloss condition. Professional water damage restoration is the right solution for homeowners and businesses that want to restore their property quickly after a flood without the hassles.

Causes Of Flood Damage

A water damage can be one of the biggest nightmares for a home or business. There are many causes for water in home or water in business situation.

When roofing materials wear out the roof decking gets exposed to moisture intrusion and damage. This often occurs around roof penetrations like exhaust fans, chimneys, and plumbing vents. Cracked chimney caps tend to let water get into interior of the chimney. Worn out shingles can curl and crack, and allows moisture intrusion.

Rain water can accumulate between a blocked gutter and the roof. When flat roof drains clogs it holds water on the roof, increasing the chances of a leak and the risk of collapse of the roof under the weight of the water.

Act Fast

When there is water in business or water in home, the key to successful water cleanup is acting fast. Water penetrates any material that is nearby and porous and destroys it. If you have experienced damage from floods, sewer backups, burst pipes, or storms you need an experienced water cleanup professional right away to handle the situation to prevent further loss.

Leaving stagnant water and damp areas in your home or business will cause structural damage and other undesirable conditions. When you call a water cleanup company, their trained water restoration professionals will be there quickly. Their technicians are well trained and are highly knowledgeable in the proper protocols and techniques for cleaning up and drying water or flood damage, water in home, water in business, and repair.

Use Powerful Equipment

Professionals use state of the art equipment and advanced technology, which enable them to perform proper extraction of water and moisture and apply structural drying. These are necessary to prevent issues such as crumbling drywall, and cracking and warped wood. These experts use powerful equipment and tools to pump out the water and use large air movers and air dehumidifiers to remove damp air. They are able to extract hundreds of gallons of water quickly, and efficiently.

Water Damage Mitigation And Restoration

A reputable team of professionals can minimize the chaos you experience after a flood disaster by providing you with comprehensive and well-coordinated water cleanup, drying, and restoration services.

With their expertise and advanced technology, mitigation professionals can identify the source of the water in business or water in home, stop the leak, and provide the necessary repairs before restoring the environment to its preloss condition. They will ensure that all phases of the project, including the remediation or structural drying, is managed properly. The technicians will also ensure that they restore your home or commercial property to its original condition. Mitigation companies may also provide direct insurance billing, and may even cover the cost of your deductible.


Considerations

Knowing the proper steps in the flood damage mitigation process can help prevent further damage, and avoid hassles. Whether it be a burst pipe or a small leak, you must act fast to get the mess cleaned up and ensure your home is safe, and dry. By acting quickly and calling in the professionals many of your valuables can be saved. Trained flood mitigation professionals from a reputable company can take proper steps in getting your home or business back to its original condition.
Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on water loss.

Dealing with a Commercial Fire Loss: Important Information for Business Owners

6/16/2017 (Permalink)


Dealing with a Commercial Fire Loss: Important Information for Business Owners

A fire can occur in the blink of an eye, leaving behind an array of emotions, terrible smoke smell and smoke damage, soot damage, and many other problems. Although seemingly devastating, knowing the right steps to take is valuable. Fire cleanup is important when you want to overcome the hurdles that you've been left with after fire damage or smoke damage. Whether you've experienced commercial fire damage, smoke damage, soot damage, or troubles in your home, having a plan of action ensures that you can recover from the tragedy quickly.

Fire in Home

After a fire in home, you're probably filled with anxiety, worry, and fear. A fire leaves a homeowner devastated, oftentimes wondering the right steps to take next. If you have experienced a fire in home, ensure the following steps are taken:

- After a fire in home, find a fire damage specialist to help you with fire cleanup. These specialists have the proper equipment and knowledge to get your home back in order once again.

- Do not enter the home until the fire department deems it safe to re-enter. Smoke damage, soot damage, the smoke smell, and an array of additional problems should be enough to keep you away until given the green light.

- Call your insurance company immediately after a fire in home that's left fire damage. The adjuster can help you begin the process of rebuilding, assisting with claims, fire cleanup, and more.

- Board up the windows of the home, and seal the doors to prevent unauthorized entrance into the home.

Fire in Business

A fire in business may cause financial devastation for some individuals. Rather than allow such drastic measures to happen, seeking the help of a fire damage restoration company is advisable. Fire in business, whether it is a smoke smell, soot damage, smoke damage, or worse, can seem like the end of the world, but the professionals offering fire damage restoration ensure there is hope and a bright future at the end of the day. A few additional tips to help you after commercial fire damage:

- Hire a commercial fire damage professional who is experienced in fire damage restoration at businesses. Fire cleanup is a long, tiring process, but one that you need completed quickly so you're not experiencing more hassles than necessary.

- Contact the insurance company to file a claim.

- Secure the premises so that no one can enter the facility. This is a primary concern after fire in a business.

Choosing a Fire Cleanup Specialist

Many fire damage restoration companies are out there. Don't hire the first name that comes your way and find yourself disappointed in the results. Instead, search for a professional who:

- Offers free estimates of the job. You can easily compare rates, services, and more. Choose a full-service company that offers soot damage cleanup, who can remove the smoke smell, and who handles other services that you might need during the cleanup process.

- Experience matters. Choose a company with at least a few years of experience underneath their belt.

- What is the reputation of the company? Hire a company that is recommended by others.

- Does the company offer commercial fire damage repair and residential damage, or only one or the other? If you have commercial fire damage, you obviously need a professional with expertise in the area, so choose wisely.

Final Thoughts

Fire damage recovery from a professional fire cleanup company ensures that you can salvage any items that were not ruined in the fire, helping you get back to life as you know it in a much faster time frame. Although you're likely filled with many emotions, you mustn't let those feelings stand in the way of repairing your home or business. Find a professional, and get your life back!
Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on fire loss.

Preventing Commercial Mold Damage is the Best Defense

6/16/2017 (Permalink)


Preventing Commercial Mold Damage is the Best Defense

Prevention is a better way to control mold damage than mold removal, which is why many mold removal services prefer to handle both remediation and mitigation simultaneously. When remediation occurs, professional mold removal services are able to control mold damage and restore a home or office to its former glory as well as provide mitigation services to help home and business owners learn the art of preventing mold in the home as well as commercial mold damage. Remediation and mitigation are so important to this process, but it’s the art of learning to prevent mold damage from occurring the first place that allows people to forgo the unpleasant experience of finding mold in the home or commercial mold damage.

Identify Problem Areas

If people recognized areas as problematic, no one would have mold in the home or commercial mold damage to deal with. No one would need mold removal services, and no one would require the help of a remediation and mitigation service. Before problems arise, learn to find the areas that might invite fungus and mildew to form. Bathrooms, basements, kitchens, closets, and other small, dark, damp places throughout the home are where fungus and mildew to go to make a home.

When fungus and mildew have a little bit of moisture, both can turn to mold. Mold is fungus that grows from spores in the air. These rooms certainly aren’t the only rooms in which mildew and fungus can grow, but these are the rooms that offer the most chance for survival. Any room that’s dark and moist with a high level of humidity is a perfect space for mold in the home to begin spreading.

Remove Moisture

Now that people are aware of the problem areas in the home or office, it’s time to prevent mold in the home and commercial mold damage from occurring in the first place. These rooms will form mold if they remain moist. It’s time to get rid of the source of moisture. That slow leak in a pipe, that drip in a faucet, or even the faulty ventilation system in a bathroom must go. Each must be repaired to make the area less inviting to mold spores and the issues they bring. If the humidity level is high, it’s time to remedy that. Smart thermostats make it easy for homeowners to keep the humidity level in check.

Learn to Recognize the Signs

No matter what home and business owners do to prevent mold from occurring, there is always a chance more mold might grow in other areas or even in areas no one expects. If someone suspects mold might be a problem, there is one thing to check for. A smelly odor that has no apparent source could mean mold. Mold damage does provide a smelly odor, specifically as it begins to spread. The smelly odor in question might be slightly damp smelling, but it’s still a smelling odor. Deodorization isn’t a problem in the home, but deodorization is not enough to get rid of a mold issue that’s forming. The best option homeowners have is to get rid of the smell using deodorization but to also search for the cause of the smell. It’s a mistake to assume deodorization masking this odor is enough.

Now that more people are aware of what to look for and how to prevent mold from occurring, it’s time for them to take control of homes and offices. If mold is found, it’s imperative they call for professional remediation. These companies use the correct tools and equipment to dry a home or office and prevent mold from reoccurring. They are faster, more efficient, and they’re more capable of putting a stop to the spread of mold throughout the home or office before it becomes out of control and more damaging to flooring and walls as well as preventing a smelly odor.
Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on mold removal and remediation.

Managing Water Damage in a Business

6/16/2017 (Permalink)


Managing Water Damage in a Business

Running a business is often a complicated process that requires a careful and skilled focus on vital issues. Unfortunately, many problems can severely impact the operation of your business and make it run inefficiently. For example, water damage can occur when a pipe bursts or if a river or lake floods and sends water rushing through your doors.

Flood damage like this is a grave concern, as water in business centers can be devastating. While you may not lose everything like those who suffer from water in home areas, you can lose a lot. Here is what you need to know about this problem and the different ways that it can be managed through drying, water cleanup, mitigation, and restoration procedures.

How Does Water Damage Occur in a Business?

So just how can water damage impact your business? There are many different ways, including flood damage from rain waters and serious plumbing disasters. Just think of your basement and all the pipes located down there. If these pipes burst open, water could get all over your delicate items and require serious drying and restoration procedures.

What are the chances that this problem could affect you? The risks aren't probably that high, but when it does happen, drying and mitigation are going to save your business from a near total loss. This reality is especially true when water cleanup helps protect delicate areas of your business from failure or the kind of destruction that could ruin you.

Is It Serious?

The severity of this situation all depends on where your flood damage or water damage occur. Usually, though, it is going to be a grave concern. As we mentioned above, a burst pipe in your basement could severely damage paperwork or furniture you have stored in that area. However, a burst pipe or damage from a sprinkler could cause a serious concern even in your business areas.

For example, imagine the kind of problems that would happen if enough water fell on top of your computer systems or your networking area. Water damage to these areas could cause them to breakdown or ultimately fail. When that happens, you're likely to lose information stored on them. However, some mitigation and restoration process may be able to help there.

Can It Affect My Profits?

Water in business buildings and even water in home areas can be far-reaching and can affect your profits. For example, water in business buildings will make it impossible for you to open up certain areas of your business. For example, you may be forced to close down your entryway until water cleanup and restoration procedures can get it back into shape. These methods include:

    Finding damaged areas
    Assessing the problem
    Deciding if it can be saved
    Restoring it if possible
    Tearing it out if it cannot be saved
    Discussing the replacement procedures with you
    Carefully installing new replacement items


That's why it is important to get to work drying the area and contacting restoration experts right away. Their mitigation skills can help keep your business from suffering the kind of fate that water in home areas often causes, such as total loss. You can beat this problem and keep your business looking great for years to come.

Final Thoughts

If your business is suffering from water damage, water in business problems, or even water in home areas near your business, you need to contact us right away. We are a water cleanup company that will perform the necessary mitigation and restoration procedures to get your business back into shape quickly and efficiently.

Don't forget that one of our specialties is flood damage in business areas like yours. Not only that, but we are skilled at identifying the best mitigation and water cleanup methods for your needs. With the help of our drying tools, you can repair flood damage, keep water in business problems to a minimum, and get back to work as soon as possible. Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on commercial water loss.

Essential Aspects Of The Storm Damage Restoration Process

5/8/2017 (Permalink)

Essential Aspects Of The Water Damage Restoration Process


Water damage mitigation pertains to restoring properties like house furniture, equipment, and fixtures to their original state. Although most of us prepare for disasters that could happen like in the case of flood damage, we cannot prevent water from entering the house especially if the whole town or community is sunken in water by a storm. The same applies to damages caused by water in business establishments.

It is not just due to flood damage. Broken water pipes or sewers that overflow can likewise accumulate and destroy properties and can cause massive flooding of water in business properties too. Water in home destroys appliances, carpets, cabinets, carpets and other fixture that is in the house. Replacing these items after they have been damaged by the water could spell financial disaster since you already have invested in them. Hence water damage restoration is needed in order not to lose much on invested properties and possessions.

The water cleanup process is not only cleaning and drying the items or properties that were affected by the water in home. While most water situations are best left to the professional cleaners and restorers, it is still best to know what to do if in case the professionals are not around yet or if widespread losses due to storms mean you cannot find one to do the job immediately.

The following are the general steps to follow:

Make an initial assessment of the property that has been damaged.

Look for a way to reduce the quantity of water in home and water in business establishments and make every possible way to remove the water.

Ventilate the damaged area with fans, dehumidifiers, and open windows to provide air flow that would help in drying the place out.

Put appliances, furniture, and fixtures in another place not damaged by the water so the floors could dry faster.

Dispose of things that you will not use or need anymore. This is to reduce the quantity of items that you have to put back after the water cleanup. It will also be an effective way to provide space for the remaining possessions in the house.

Should the water mitigation professionals arrive, give them leeway to do their water cleanup job since it is their area of expertise. Try to tag along with them as they are doing their water cleanup so you could get a first-hand knowledge of what to do next time the same problem occurs.

Implementing the following principles of water damage restoration may help make the task more organized:

Stabilize - make sure that the area is secure or safe and the source of water in home or water in business properties has been permanently stopped.

Clean - any debris and accompanying dirt should have been removed thoroughly when the water has been fully stopped.

Disinfect - storm water and other sources of flood which entered the house and damaged properties and possessions are contaminated and dirty. Thus, a disinfecting procedure must be administered to remove germs and bacteria that may cause or be a source of infection.

Dry - this is the primary reason for having a water damage restoration and mitigation solution. All items that undergo restoration should end up dry because there is no point in restoring something without this result.

Repair - when everything that was damaged by the water has been totally dried, repair is necessary to restore the furniture and fixture to its original state.


Removing any remaining pathogenic spores is necessary when doing water damage mitigation. This is especially crucial for homes affected by flood damage. Wipe all affected areas and surfaces with the disinfectant as this would also help reduce the stale or sour odor. Then dry the area by putting in fans and turning on dehumidifiers. Use an air filter to capture any lingering foul smell. The drying process normally takes a week or more, depending on the size of the area that you are drying and the weather.

Take time to go through the items which you removed from your house to see which appliances, furniture, and fixtures that you could use again and dispose of the others that could no longer be restored. The salvaged items from a flood damage must also be disinfected by wiping a disinfectant solution on the items with a clean cloth. Then allow these items to dry the area from where it came from. Re-occupation and re-using of all flood-affected properties and items must only be done when everything is completely cleaned and dried. Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on water and flood damage.

Commercial Fire Damage Cleanup and Repair

5/8/2017 (Permalink)


Commercial Fire Damage Cleanup and Repair

Going through the trauma of having a fire in home or fire in business is something no one wants to experience. The loss of property from smoke damage, soot damage and fire damage is devastating, and if anyone in the family suffers injury or suffocation from strong smoke smell, getting your house back to normal after the unfortunate fire in home incident is sometimes delayed. After the horrifying experience from fire damage, it takes time for families to regroup, settle down, and think about repairs and fire damage restoration for your home. But once things are stabilized you need to work your way through the following steps.

Step One

The most crucial step is to seek help from fire cleanup professionals. It is best not to enter the house until the fire department tells you it is safe to do so. Families should stay out of the home until fire cleanup officials assure them the fire is out and the smoke smell is completely clear.

Fire cleanup professionals will also inspect the house for any potential dangers, such as hanging lumber, blocked walkways, and broken glass. The fire department will advise families of the damage the house has sustained from both the soot damage and smoke damage.

Step Two

It is entirely possible that fire cleanup officials will restrict the family from re-entering the house for an unknown amount of time, especially when fire damage restoration is still in progress. Once you have let your extended family know what happened and assured them that things are under control, it is time to call your insurance company.

You need to make contacting your representative a priority. Your insurance agent will document the damage, assist you in finding lodging, and calculate your emergency living expenses. The agent will also estimate the cost of clean-up. Do not underestimate the cost in all fire damage restoration endeavors.

If you rent, call the landlord and report what has occurred so that he is aware of the fire in home.

Step Three

The fire department will write a "fire report" that will contain information about the fire in home, notably the damage to the property, smoke damage, soot damage, resources destroyed, pungent smoke smell if any and other pertinent information.

This document will be an invaluable record of the incident. If necessary, homeowners may procure a copy of the report to get an idea of the full extent of the fire damage.

Step Four

Depending on the damage done to your home, emergency services may require you to cordon off your property to discourage trespassers and keep people safely away from the dwelling. In most cases, insurance companies require this action.

If your house is damaged, before any work takes place you will want to clean the inside of your home to prepare it for repair. In some cases, a professional cleaning service might be necessary as the smoke smell can become unbearable; this is a good topic to discuss with your insurance agent.

Take these things into consideration before you make your final decision to restore your home, leave your home, or sell:

· the extent of the damage
· the amount of work to be done to clean up the smoke damage and soot damage
· expenditures
· living situations
· insurance coverage
· status of mortgage

Once you have the go-ahead from your insurance company, you need to decide if the damage to your home is more than a layman can handle.If it seems insurmountable, call a fire damage restoration and clean-up company. You can find local businesses online, but there are a few tips you need to know concerning how to find the right professional for your job.

1. The faster you get a cleanup crew into your house the easier it will be to get rid of strong odors, Ashes from the fire discolor everything in the home, and metal will tarnish. Every day these problems get worse if not quickly addressed.

2. Depend on the crew helping you because they have done this before. The experts know what can be restored and what can't.

3. All professional cleaning and restoration businesses will be:

· prompt, detailed, time efficient
· available at any time
· licensed, insured, and bonded
· industry certified
· up-to-date and properly maintained equipment
· knowledge of the full spectrum of restoration needs
· able to work with your insurance company
· customer-focused

Many restoration professionals are also capable of repairing damage to:

· drywall
· carpet (in some cases installation included)
· rooms
· business offices

Step Five
It may be that many of your personal papers and physical files burn as a result of your house fire. Replacing items like birth certificates, passports, and other documents means you will need to call government, federal and state, departments to get notarized copies of your important papers.

Commercial Fire Damage

The same principles apply when there is fire in business premises. Restoration companies know that when a business has experienced commercial fire damage and water damage from fire hoses, business owners need to get things clean and up-and-running as soon as possible. Time is money and business owners can suffer insurmountable losses if commercial fire damage is not taken care of promptly.

Cleaning and repair companies are trained, experienced, and have access to the right equipment to manage the job and put out fire in business establishments promptly. Restoration crews are fast in their response and will see the work through to the end. They are fully aware that a business cannot shut down because of damage from fire in business premises.

Call SERVPRO if you suffer from home fire damage or commercial fire damage. Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on fire damage.

What to Expect From the Mold Removal Process

5/8/2017 (Permalink)

What to Expect From the Mold Removal Process

Mold damage is unfortunately common in homes and commercial building across the country. This substance typically grows in areas that are both dark and moist, and there may be many areas in a typical building that are susceptible to growth. Mold in home as well as fungus and mildew can be unsightly and can have a smelly odor. This growth can also impact your property value and condition with costly results. With commercial mold damage, there is the added concern of the impact of mold on your business. Mold remediation and mitigation are necessary to help you remove the substance from your home or business property safely, quickly and effectively. If you are preparing to walk through the mold removal process soon, you may be wondering what to expect.

Testing for the Presence of Mold, Mildew or Fungus
The first step to take when addressing commercial mold damage or mold in home is to test for its presence. You may visibly see something that looks like mold, fungus or mildew, but professional mold testing is necessary to determine what type of substance it is as well as the precise location of its presence throughout the building. This knowledge is critical to the mold remediation and mitigation team’s efforts. The skilled team will customize their mold removal approach based on this information to provide you with the best results possible for your property.

Containing the Affected Areas

When dealing with mold damage in a home or business property, there is always a concern that the mold spores or elements from fungus and mildew can become airborne. When these substances are disrupted, the spores can easily float into the air. This makes them easier to inhale, and it can result in new areas of mold damage throughout the building. When you want to address the issue of commercial mold damage or mold in home properly, the affected area must be properly contained. Your remediation and mitigation team will secure the area using proven techniques before attempting the mold removal process.

The Mold Remediation Process

The next step to take when dealing with mold in home or in a commercial building is to remove the substance. This process must also be completed carefully using professional techniques. Mold damage may be localized to a small area of your property, or it may be widespread. In some cases, the contaminated areas may be completely removed from the property. For example, a section of contaminated drywall may be cut away and removed from the property in a controlled way to prevent the spread of mold to other areas of the property. In other cases, the mold may be killed using proven techniques by well-trained professionals to complete the mitigation and remediation process.

Deodorization to Address the Smelly Odor
The issue of residential or commercial mold damage often cannot be fully addressed without deodorization efforts to remove the smelly odor of mold, mildew or fungus. The smelly odor may permeate throughout the property rather than being contained to a local area where the growth was present. It may linger after the mold removal process has been completed as well. Professional deodorization steps can be taken to eliminate the smelly odor from your property.

From mold testing and removal to the final step of deodorization, you can count on a professional mold removal team to address the issue of growth and contamination in your home or business. Professional services are safe, fast and effective. They can help you to preserve your property’s value and to eliminate this substance from your space with great results. If you have discovered the presence of mold in your property or if you suspect that it may be growing in a hidden space that you cannot see, now is the time to reach out for an initial consultation and professional mold testing from a reputable team. Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on mold removal and remediation.

Hazards of Water Damage and How to Avoid Them

4/28/2017 (Permalink)

Hazards of Water Damage and How to Avoid Them

Being exposed to water damage that was not properly taken care of can be a hazard. Water in a home or water in a business can permanently damage the structure if left for too long. Here's some info about these hazards and what you should do if you have flood damage that will require a lot of water cleanup.

Your home's humid environment on the inside encourages mold and dust termites to grow. If additional moisture from water damage is not drying correctly, this could worsen the situation.

Mitigation Measures

Mitigation begins with a water damage restoration that includes any necessary water cleanup and a thorough drying process. Flood damage will be more severe water damage that requires more work to remove the water in your home. Water in a business can affect employees and customers health if you don't do a proper job of water cleanup.

Move Your Stuff

You are going to certainly need to clear out the area that is affected as best you can to prepare it for cleaning. Furniture can be taken outside to get some and enjoy the air movement. Place any books or sensitive documents in freezer wrap and put them in the freezer. The furniture will likely be holding water which will make it hefty. Don't hurt yourself trying to pick one up.

Flood Water Damage Restoration Tips

Flood damage will likely require the use of a pump to remove and standing water. Once the pump has removed all the water it can, a wet/dry shop vac can be used to continue removing more moisture. Open the windows for drying with natural air movement in less humid areas. If you are in a more humid area, turning on an air conditioner will help reduce the humidity inside.

Air Movement Against Water Damage

Once you have removed all the water in your home that you can, use a dehumidifier to take moisture out of the air and fans to keep the air movement going. Drying by directing the air movement where it is most needed is the best way to avoid issues associated with flood damage. After a thorough drying, a cleaning that includes a proper sanitization is that last thing you'll need to do. Mitigation of the problem is easy if you know how to best stop the problem before it starts.

Water damage that leaves excess water in the home requires some water damage restoration techniques for a successful water cleanup. Follow these tips to help you in the mitigation of the hazards associated with water in a business or a home by doing your water damage restoration correctly. Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on water loss.

Fire Damage Restoration Tips

4/28/2017 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Restoration Tips

If you have fire damage in your home or business, it's essential to call in fire damage restoration professionals. They know exactly what to do to properly address fire loss, soot damage, smoke damage and serious issues like air quality degradation. Plus it's important to act quickly. Sometimes the water used to put out fire in home or fire in business or to limit commercial fire damage can become a breeding ground for mold. This can lead to dangerous health problems. That's why it's essential to call in a licensed fire damage restoration company as soon as possible after there's a fire in home or a fire in business.

Once the fire in your home or business is out and you're sure everyone is safe, you should contact your insurance company. They can provide guidance on what steps to take to get your fire loss, soot damage and smoke damage addressed. Whether you had a fire in home, fire in business or suffered commercial fire damage, following the proper fire cleanup process is essential. Your insurance company can suggest a number of licensed, experienced, reputable fire cleanup companies to begin taking care of any fire damage, smoke damage or soot damage you may have. They will also test the air quality and let you know when it's safe to return.

When you have a fire in home, fire in business or commercial fire damage, it's essential to deal with licensed, experienced fire cleanup companies. They have the necessary tools, equipment and specially trained personnel to quickly and effectively assess and repair fire damage, smoke damage, soot damage, commercial fire damage and air quality issues. Many insurance companies will not cover the cost of fire cleanup if it's not handled by a licensed, certified fire damage cleanup company. Repairing commercial fire damage or damage caused by fire in home or fire in business can leave people in financial ruin if the insurance company does not cover those costs.

If it is not handled properly, even a seemingly minor fire in home or fire in business can be an unmitigated disaster. The fire damage, smoke damage and soot damage can lead to air quality issues or more costly repairs if not handled quickly and properly. The smell of smoke can permeate walls and furnishings and end up requiring extensive and expensive work to address it. Your fire loss can end up being a lot greater than necessary if the fire cleanup is not done right. Many unscrupulous people attempt to prey on home or business owners that have suffered a fire loss. Make sure you are not one of them. Only deal with licensed, reputable fire loss companies.

The decisions you make in the hours immediately after you suffer a fire loss will decide how well and how soon the repairs will be made, the air quality in the structure will be safe enough for you to return and how much of your repair and restoration costs your insurance company will cover. Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on fire damage.

How A Fire Restoration Company Can Help

4/28/2017 (Permalink)

How A Fire Restoration Company Can Help

A fire in the home or office can be the most devastating experience that a person ever has. In only a few seconds, a homeowner or business owner could go from having everything, to seeing his dreams go up in smoke. Fortunately, there are some steps a person can take to recover from fire damage in the home or fire damage in a business. These four steps can help someone pick himself up and recover after fire damage.


Appreciate the Positive About a Fire in the Home

It can be hard for a person to accept that he is a victim of fire damage. However, one should try to take this time to think about what could have happened from a fire in the home or a fire in the business. The person should be thankful for his life and happy that his family and employees didn't die in the fire in the business. Keeping a positive mindset can help a person to prevent depression about the fire loss.

Accept Change and Adjust

Once the fire loss victim realizes that everything in life has changed, he should accept it. Part of growing and developing maturity is accepting unfortunate incidents like smoke damage or fire in the business. The victim will have to adjust to the way that the fire in the home or the fire in the business has changed life. Fortunately, survival from fire loss is possible with the help of a reliable commercial fire damage company.


Smoke Damage Help

The smell of smoke can be a devastating reminder of everything that happened in the fire loss. However, licensed and trained professionals can remove all traces of smoke damage by using specialized equipment specially designed for soot damage and smoke damage. They can use high-quality chemicals to make the commercial property or home like it was when the person bought it.


General Fire Cleanup

General fire cleanup consists of smoke damage help, soot damage assistance and all the side work that has to be done to restore the home to excellent condition. Commercial fire damage help includes trash dumping, floor cleaning and other tasks. A reliable fire damage company usually has many team members who can work together to help a soot damage victim restore his or her life after a fire in the home or a fire in the business.


Air Quality Improvement

Fires destroy air quality in addition to causing soot damage. The air quality will need to be improved a great deal after a fire loss. An experienced commercial fire damage team can use air quality filters and the equipment to enhance the air should the soot damage victim decide to move back into the property.


How to Get Help With Fire Cleanup

Victims can contact a fire cleanup crew or a commercial fire damage company by calling or sending a short form. The person should first conduct some investigations to make sure that the company has a positive reputation, fair pricing and respectable policies about its work. The person can then schedule an appointment for a quote as soon as he finds a provider that he feels comfortable using to improve the air quality. Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on fire damage.

Mold Remediation and Removal Techniques

4/28/2017 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation and Removal Techniques

Knowing what to do for a mold problem can make the difference between spending lots of money on mitigation and saving money by choosing the best alternative possible. Therefore, when a home or business owner discovers a microbial growth problem on their property, it is very important that they do their research first. Fortunately, there is quite a bit of invaluable information online today that can assist an individual with learning what should be done early on.

Identifying microbial growth Problems and Recognizing it Symptoms

First of all, when a person sees spots of microbial growth on their ceilings and their walls, they may find that they have a chronic moisture problem already occurring. In fact, another telltale sign that may or may not be missed is the odor that mold usually emits in the home or business. However, before the owner and their representatives begin shelving out money that they may not have to address these concerns, it is essential that they know that there are free assessments that can be done to evaluate each situation. Once the free environmental hygienist assessment is completed, the microbial growth representative will advise the person or persons whether it is time for further testing to be done in the area.


When a business contacts a remediation company, one of the first things that they will normally do is to send out a certified mold assessment consultant. These consultants are trained in a variety of different things including collecting samples from the area so that the testing can begin. To make sure these environmental hygienist companies provide accurate and credible results, most states require the testing company and the remediation company that actually does the work to be different. Meaning the environmental hygienist company that does the inspection has to be different from the company that calls in the mildew and fungus team to rid the business of the mold cleanup problems.

How do Mildew, Fungus, and Mold Cleanup Specialist Rid the business of Problems

After the mildew problem has been inspected, the Mitigation specialist will provide the owner with the protocol that will be used to clean up the contaminated areas. Since these mildew processes have to be conducted in a mold cleanup controlled environment, only mitigation specialists who have been trained to resolve these problems can do this work. This is because these professionals have been trained via the use of special clothing, equipment, expertise and the like. Meaning the mold and mildew that they are handling must be done strategically and according to governmental requirements. Therefore, for those of you who are interested in what they will do to complete the work, you can look online to see what kinds of procedures will be completed at that point in time.

Learning what to do to clean up a mold, fungus, and mildew problem may not be as simple as some people may think. However, when people become aware of what can be done to initiation the best mitigation efforts, they can start a mold cleanup project that will get rid of these issues right away. Meaning one of the best ways to address a mold clean up fungus solution for a home or a business is to contact specialists to assess, inspect and present the protocol of what must be done. Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on mold remediation.

Life After Water Damage

3/30/2017 (Permalink)

Life After Water Damage       
                        
            It's a great day in Hyde Park, great except you have just come home to discover that your home sweet Texas home has been damaged.

Damaged by what? One of a homeowner's worst nightmares, water. Not only do you have to deal with water in your home, but also with the water damage to your belongings. And if that wasn't bad enough you get to top it off dealing with the insurance company. Many insurance policies do not cover flood damage or water cleanup. You'll need to look over your policy well to ensure that you are covered, hopefully before disaster strikes. Once you have called your insurance company you can get moving to what matters the most to you, mitigation. Everyone hopes that the flood damage won't take everything, and with proper clean up you can get on with your life with many of your possessions as well as your home still in good condition, though you may still have some things that are too damaged to be saved. Remember to take pictures of everything, this will help you with your insurance claim. Keep in mind when taking pictures that you want to show water damage to the home structure, furnishings, as well as your belongings. All the details that matter to you matter to your claim.


Now that you have all the insurance aspects are handled you're going to be eager to start water cleanup. Just keep in mind Austin, TX, safety first! Be sure you look around the structure carefully to be sure that it is safe to enter. Turn off all electric to your home, and then check out the structure to ensure that it is safe enough to go in. Once inside take care to avoid slips and other injuries while cleaning. You will also need to take steps to make sure that further damage doesn't occur, board up windows, and secure tarps or plastic over any holes you may have. Now that there is water in the home it has to come out. You can use pumps to remove that water, then just mop and blot up the remainder.
 


Any items that are soaked will have to be removed. This can be anything: carpeting, bedding, clothing, furniture. you'll have to decide that can be saved through drying and what you're going to throw away. Many items can be saved and cleaned and then some won't be worth the expense. This is likely to be far more time consuming than water in a business would be since you are going to have to go through every item you own. Remember to be safe and wear gloves and other protective gear as this water can be contaminated with bacteria as well as household chemicals.

Using a restoration company can really help with the mitigation process as they can clean and safe more of your belongings than you could on your own. Do keep in mind that the hot Austin, TX sun isn't going to do the drying itself, air movement is going to be super important to your efforts, so make sure that your home is well ventilated to ensure things dry as quickly as possible. Somethings you may want to take outside to dry. Be sure to prop things such as cushions up so they can get the maximum airflow and will be less likely to mold. Be sure that you don not try to use any electronics that have gotten wet. This will cause irreparable damage and the item will then have to be replaced rather than restored.


Yes, that house in Hyde Park looks a mess right now, but it won't take long before it starts to look like a home again. The hardest part for most people is looking through all the keepsakes that they can't replace such as pictures and thinking that there is no hope of repair. Don't worry Texas, there are options out there. A quick search online will give you hope that more can be saved than you think, not just your photos but documents as well. Just be sure that you get in touch with them quickly as mold can begin to grow in as little to 24 to 48 hours.  Be sure that you document any thing that you do throw out for your insurance company, this will help get your belongings replaced.


Sometimes you will even have to get water out of your walls. Just be sure that you take pictures of your wall before you remove any wet baseboards or wall covering. You can put small holes at floor level in your wall to allow water to escape. In summer you can turn on your air conditioner to help with air movement and drying times, if of course it is safe to do so.


Your home may be able to be lived in while being cleaned up, if so be sure that you ensure safety while doing so. Use flash lights and candles if need be to see in dark rooms. Do not eat or drink anything that has been contaminated by the flood water. If your home can't be lived in while being restored you can contact your insurance company and find out what they can do, they may cover living expenses while you can't be in your home, this is another difference between water in a home and water in a business.


While there are many things that are important to do there are also so things that it is important not to do. Just keep these things in mind and you'll have your home back in shape in no time. Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on the water restoration process.

Handling a Fire Loss in Austin, TX

3/30/2017 (Permalink)

Handling a Fire Loss in Austin, TX            
                        
            The fun and excitement in life often fade away so fast when
one is caught with a fire damage disaster in Austin, TX. Unfortunately
for fire accidents – just like many other accidents – they do not give a
 warning before they happen for one to prepare themselves. Beyond being
caught unawares, the damages that follow are great. If the home or
premises is not brought to the ground completely, those items that
people treasure the most are always destroyed by the fire. If the fire
has not touched them, then the smoke, soot, or water damage from the
fire does not spare them. Soot damage, smoke damage, and water damage
are equally destructive to the home.

Fire damages always cause huge financial implications; especially if
their Hyde Park home or premises was not insured against fire. The cost
of bringing the property back to its feet is always very high. In fact,
some of the items destroyed cannot even be replaced. In case it is
business premises, a fire would mean a close in business for weeks or
even months translating to massive losses. There is, also, the aspect of
 emotional disorientation that comes with such a calamity.
What to do next

In case one is faced with this unfortunate event, it is important that
fire cleanup process commences immediately to get rid of the smoke
damage, soot damage, and water damage from fire. One can actually be
able to recover some valuable items from the destroyed property. There
are a number of things one could observe to ensure that they get back on
 their feet as soon as possible.

The first thing one should do as soon as possible is to contact the
people at the insurance company. If one’s home had an insurance cover
for a fire loss, then it is key that they should not assume that the
insurance company will automatically know the situation they are in or
someone else will contact them informing them of the same.

The next thing for one to do is to contact family and friends to inform
them of what has happened to them. This is very important as one can get
 massive help, financial and emotional support and a place to stay in
the meantime in Austin, Texas: especially if one has a family. The
support of family and friends can go a long way in ensuring that once
recovers emotionally. The weight of such a loss can be quite heavy.

While one might be tempted to try salvage some of the property by
themselves, it is important that they get in touch with a fire damage
restoration company to handle the fire cleanup process. Such companies
are very important especially if one has a big home or in case the
smoke, the soot, and the water damage is quite extensive. While there
are many companies that serve Hyde Park and the entire of Texas, it is
best if one seeks the services of a company recommended to them by their
 insurance company. Actually, most insurance companies will cover the
cost of the restoration services offered by the company.

The importance of a restoration company cannot be emphasized further.
Besides the fast response and their ability to handle a fire disaster of
 any magnitude, they have the right workforce to handle the situations
effectively. A reliable company is one that has qualified, certified,
and experienced technicians. They will be able to handle the assessment
process and handle the restoration process in the most effective way
possible, especially damage from smoke, soot, and water.

Smoke damage can ruin many items in the home. Besides the damage to
items, it causes the air quality in the home to deteriorate. The same
applies to soot damage. It gives the home a terrible look and an equally
 digestive feel when touched. Such damages may not be effectively
handled when one does the restoration by themselves. However, with a
trustworthy restoration company, they will be able to handle the
restoration process effectively ensuring that these damages are
countered in the most efficient way possible. Water damage caused by
fire, if not handled effectively can, also, lead to home damage and mold
 growth. This aspect is, also, effectively handled with a restoration
company. At the end after the restoration, the air quality, the look,
and the feel of the home will be better.

One should start a claim with their insurance company immediately.
Insurance claims will help you get back on your feet without significant
 financial implications. It is important that one keeps all their
receipts in a safe place that is less vulnerable to fire. The receipts
should be detailed and have a record of all the items to ease the claim
process.

One might want to save as many items as possible from the fire. It is
not uncommon for the insurance company to not cover the cost of the
restoration if they determine some form of irregularity in the causes of
 the fire that may breach the terms of coverage. As a precautionary
measure, one could make an effort to salvage as many items as possible
so that in case such a situation happens to them with their insurance
company, they have something to start with in their rebuilding process.

While the home can be restored quite fast, the emotional aspect of it
can be quite difficult to overcome. Helplessness, deep sadness, despair,
 disorientation, and a loss of routine are some of the emotional hurdles
 that people have to face when they experience a fire. While family and
friends play an important role in ensuring that one does not drown in
depression, counseling in one of the best means of overcoming the
emotional disorientation. In case one has children, children reassurance
 can go a long way in ensuring their recovery. Always assure them that
you have each other to give them hope.

After the restoration process and everything being back to normal, it is
 important that one renews their insurance cover and if they had no
insurance cover in case of a fire, they should make a point to insure
their TX home. Insurance ensures that after such a calamity, it is much
easier to get back on one’s feet. Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on fire damage.

What to do when you find Mold in Your Home in Austin, TX

3/30/2017 (Permalink)

What to do when you find Mold in Your Home in Austin, TX            
                        
            When you first discover mold in your Austin TX home, you
will have a lot of questions as well as will wonder what your next steps
 will be to remove the microbial growth along with the fungus and mildew
 that is part of the mold issue. Mold cleanup is a topic that you need
to make sure that you have all the information about before you begin
the process. Education will be your best weapon as if you remove it
correctly the first time, then the odds of it returning will be a lot
lower. The following article will lay out what you need to know about
mold cleanup.  


The first thing that you will need to make sure that you do is to have
your home tested to see if this is, in fact, the problem that you are
experiencing. The best way to do this is to call in a professional that
knows how to test your Hyde Park Texas home. This will help to tell you
the type of fungus that you are dealing with. Since many of the people
that are able to test your home are engineers, they will be able to find
 the microbial growth in all parts of your home. If you are lucky and
the growth is small, then you will a lot of times be able to handle it
on your own. If the issue is a bit larger, then you will want to hire a
professional and since many people who can test also can remove the
issue, you can have them remove it as well.  


If you decide to do the work yourself, you will need to make sure that
you remove the cause of the issue, to begin with. Many houses in Hyde
Park Texas and Austin TX deal with high levels of humidity and as a
result, this promotes the growth in your home. Also if you have pipes on
 your wall that leaks or a roof on your home that leaks as well, you
will need to have this looked at as well and repaired.


You may not have thought about it, but calling your insurance agent will
 often time help you as they will be able to tell you if your removal
will be covered or not. Some policies will cover removal from your home
as part of the comprehensive plan. You will need to talk to them and see
 if your plan does, in fact, cover this. Now that you have done all of
this, you will need to decide if you will be the one to remove it or
not. If you do, then you will need to make sure that you read all of the
 articles you can in order to get the best results to keep it from
coming back. If you decide to go with a professional, then you will want
 to make sure that you deal with one that is experienced in removal
procedures and keeping it from coming back.  


Getting a quote from a professional will be one of the first things that
 you need to make sure that you do when looking for a person to handle
your issues for you. Talk to a few companies before you make the
decision to just one company. You will need to make sure that you
compare these quotes and go with the one that seems to be the most
reliable and will give you the best results for the money that you
spend.   


Mold in your home can be a serious issue and one that you need to make
sure that you get taken care of as soon as possible. The use of an
environmental hygienist will be important as they will have all the
needed information to help your home be free from the fungus that has
been invading it for so long. Having all the facts about mold cleanup
will often time help you to know what to look for and how to go about
dealing with the issue when and if it pops up in your life. Even the
smallest part of this can have a huge impact on your life. You will want
 to catch any issues while they are still rather small and non-invasive
in your life. One of the biggest areas of this subject will be in
finding an environmental hygienist who can come in and help to remove
the issue from your home and get things back to some sense of normal.
There is no reason why you should let mildew affect your life and ruin
your home in the process.              
        
    Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on mold remediation.

Water Restoration- The Dehumidifier

3/13/2017 (Permalink)

Water Restoration Dehumidifier

In the South part of the U.S. the low grain dehumidifier is the work horse of most water restoration projects.  With common exterior humidity not conducive to drying, most structures affected by water damage would not dry in places like Florida, Texas, or Louisiana without the aid of additional evaporation.  We achieve this through the use of low grain dehumidifiers.  As "wet" air travels through the machine the moisture is pulled out through condensation. This reduces the moisture content of the air and produces warm, dry air ready to take on ambient moisture and once again go through the drying cycle.  Occasionally the condensate builds up to a point the reservoir  must be emptied which happens via a pump and expulsion tube commonly inserted to bath tubs, sinks, or other plumbing lines.  It is surprising to most people that in the early stages of a water restoration project 20 gallons of water can easily be pulled straight out of the air in a single day.  With only a few amp draw (similar to a common refrigerator) these efficient units make the advanced drying of today possible.  If you ever have any questions give us a call SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin

Did the Water Restoration Company really dry everything out?

3/13/2017 (Permalink)

Tools we use when training our techs

I have watched this industry change quite a bit over the past 20 plus years.  There have been a number of factors influencing this change:  Technology, research, changes in billing practices, litigation and (most influential) the media.  The change brought by the media is that more and more mitigation (our main function) has become a term not unfamiliar to the common person any longer.  Couple that with the news coverage of mold and we have more homeowners asking better questions!  By far the most common question: "How do we KNOW it's dry??"  Unfortunately more often than not water restoration "experts" have more faith in their science than they should and do not fully confirm every material is fully dry on every project.  This is because a special practice is required to 100% confirm all substrates are dry.  Here at SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin we do things a little more innovative.  Pictured above is what is commonly referred to as a "screw set".  Now, this is our in house training tool, so, this is a cut-away illustrating proper application of this technique.  As one can see in the photo a stainless steel screw is set through the baseboard, drywall and sill plate allowing us to read all three substrates at once.  There should be a screw set at the point of water penetration at the very minimum by the end of the project.  It is also common to have multiple other sets in various other areas of concern such as window sills, door headers, cabinets, etc.  If your water restoration company isn't setting screws, they aren't getting all the data!

Too much HVAC Condensation?

3/3/2017 (Permalink)

Wet Condensation on Duct Work

Is your HVAC working properly?  Did you know that improper HVAC units cause about 70% of the mold issues in homes?  When you turn your A/C on it is removing moisture from the air as part of its cooling process.  There are number of malfunctions that can cause your A/C to cool but not reduce the humidity within the environment to an acceptable level.   You really need your indoor air to be below 60% and even more preferred is below 50%, not just cool.

 

Signals you may be experiencing high humidity in your home.  You will have musty or moldy odors but you don't see any visible mold and you have not experienced any water damage.  The really obvious one is mold growing on furniture or cloths in the closet that may look like a heavy layer of dust at first. 

 

If you are experiencing any of these things give SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin a call.   

Storm Warning - What to do

3/3/2017 (Permalink)

Typical aftermath

Surprise storms, especially tornadoes, can lead to catastrophic damage and worse. It's important to be informed and know the meaning behind a Watch and a Warning. A Tornado Watch is issued when severe thunderstorms and tornadoes are possible in and near the watch area. It does not mean that they will occur. It only means they are possible. A Tornado Warning is issued when a tornado is imminent. When a tornado warning is issued, seek safe shelter immediately. Remember to stay away from windows and doors. Even if the storm directly misses your home or place of business, does not mean you are safe from debris from nearby areas. First priority should be to make sure you're safe. Once the storm has passed, assess damage to the areas of your home. If there is damage, typical mitigation includes boarding up windows, tarping off roofs and more. SERVPRO Hyde Park/Central Austin can help you mitigate your damages, help clean up and prevent further damage.

Does your personnel and venders know who to call in the event of Commercial Water loss?

3/3/2017 (Permalink)

ERP App - One Click Away

Janitors, fire control vendors, elevator vendors and many others can cause damage to a commercial building both in process of working, as well as by mistake.  We recently were activated late on a Sunday to help on a water damage caused by a vendor mistakenly leaving a water faucet on over the weekend. That vendor called an unfamiliar mitigation company causing further delays in response time.  Having all vendors aware of who is your preferred vendor for disaster response is very important.  This is very easily accomplished with the SERVPRO Emergency Ready Plan mobile application (ERP for short).  The ERP is a great tool for afterhours when staffing is light.  The app allows you/us to take photos and label important things such as points of entry, shut off valves, drains.  The possibilities are only limited by your imagination.  SERPVRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin will help you set this up free of charge.  Then when disaster strikes, we are one click away!

Good Remediation Contractor vs Mold Regulations

3/3/2017 (Permalink)

Sample Resutls

Did you know that there are lots of Mold Regulations and Standards but very few are actually related to the manner in which the work is performed?  Using a state licensed Mold Remediation Company (MRC) doesn't mean all things are equal.  It is not difficult for an MRC to be in compliance or to have never been written up or fined for being out of compliance.  The regulations don't teach or have a detailed remediation process that the MRC should follow. 

So when you are searching around for a good qualified MRC be careful.  One good source is a referral from the Mold Assessment Consultant (Mac).  A good MAC will have seen the work of many MRCs.  If you have done your homework and hired a good MAC chances are you will get a great referral for a good MRC. 

This also works the other way around.  We have been in the mold remediation business since early 2000.  We know a few really good Mold Assessment Consultants we can refer you too. 

We want to make sure your Mold Remediation project goes as smoothly as possible and it all starts with the proper MAC and MRC.  Make SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin your first call!!

First steps upon fire damage to your home

3/3/2017 (Permalink)

House Fire - Make the best of it

Hopefully you never have a fire in your home; but if you do suffer a Fire Loss what first steps should you take??  First, Call your insurance agent and ask about your ALE (additional living expenses).   This is the portion of your policy that will pay for your living arrangements during a loss if you cannot continue to live in your home during the remediation process. 

Second, collect important documents.  Only enter the structure if it is safe and do not disturb the  source area of the fire.  Hopefully you know what all you will want to remove. Other things to consider:  most restoration vendors will not take guns, fine jewelry, ammunition, etc.  You may need to make arrangements for these things to be stored and or cleaned separate from the restoration vendor.  Talk to your vendor and see. 

In general getting started on the clean-up from a major fire is not an absolute emergency - take your time in choosing a vendor for the clean-up that you are comfortable with!

Keep  positive outlook and be patient.  Things will be back to normal again and all the sooner if you keep a good outlook and work with all parties involved.

We here at SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin are always here to help.  Just give us a call.

Fire loss - preparing to be away from home for an extended time

3/3/2017 (Permalink)

Fire Loss

Many residential structure fires require the homeowners to live elsewhere while the repairs to the home are made.  This is not only stressful, but can be challenging when trying to consider what might be needed.  The following is our suggestions for a long term (more than 2 weeks) term:  A "season" of clothing should be processed by the textile vendor as "quick turnaround" which is usually only a few days.

 

In a heavy soot fire, mattresses and box springs are also generally replaced.  As for hard content such as dishes and flatware - the content vendor can usually also do a quick turn here and get at least a kitchen back to fully functional in a week as well.

Upholstery and furniture generally takes a bit longer - which is why we suggest a furnished home or apartment to be rented if possible, and most homeowners policies can easily cover such expense. 

Give SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin a call, we can assist will all your needs.

Water Damage 101

3/3/2017 (Permalink)

Be prepared.

Call SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin.   Mitigate the loss as quickly as possible.  First by stopping the water source.  If it's a plumbing break or leak turn the water of at the main if you have to.  Put towels down to dam up pooled water from spreading.  Now focus on saving your content and start moving your content to a dry area.  If the dry area is carpeted put tin foil under any wooden feet to avoid furniture staining. 


If the water sources was from above start clearing out your contents that are below in case the water starts to migrate down.  Be careful sagging or collapsed ceilings that may fall or continue to fall. 


Just remember, if you have already called SERVPRO, don't worry about the mess.  Save your content from any further damage and stop the water source. 

Water Damage 101

3/3/2017 (Permalink)

Call the SERVPRO Hero Team

Did you know by waiting too long before you react to a water loss can cost you big.  You can mistakenly cause a minor water damage to go from a simple job and covered loss, to large non salvage-demo job.  By your delays, you can also compromise your coverage.  Most policies read it is the insured's responsibility to mitigate.

If you have a minor fresh water leak chances are we can come in and dry everything in-place.  By waiting, after 48 hrs we are going have to remove baseboards at a minimum and many floor coverings may not be salvageable at the point.

After several days chances are we are going to need to remove all wet porous materials like drywall.  This could impact cabinets and counter tops or tiled walls and most floor coverings at this point are non salvageable. 

If your insurance company denies coverage that is a lot of expense to risk by not calling SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin as soon as you learn you have a water loss.

Commercial Building - Multi Story Loss

3/1/2017 (Permalink)

SERVPRO is on site

In a commercial setting a top down loss can be devastating to the building owners, management group and of course the tenants. Recently SERVPRO Hyde Park/Central Austin responded to a commercial loss originating on the fifth floor. The water migration path passed through the fourth floor and stopped on the third. We were able to determine the migration path with the use of infrared imaging technology and verify our findings with moisture content readings. Once all the affected areas are properly identified, a drying plan can be put in place. In this instance, SERVPRO Hyde Park/Central Austin placed sixty air movers and fifteen dehumidifiers to begin the drying process. An important note for all parties involved, while the equipment may be a temporary nuisance, it is better than the secondary damage. By leaving the drying equipment running as continuously as possible, it will shorten the duration it must remain on site. More than likely the drying equipment can be removed within three to five days.

Wet weather doesn't always cause mold.

2/24/2017 (Permalink)

Drip Drip

Did you know mold can easily be prevented.  Often people are concerned about mold coming back after a remediation project.  Its real simple keep things dry and mold won't grow.  I didn't say mold won't be present.  Mold is everywhere all the time.  However, that's an entire different blog.

 

If you think about areas or materials being dry vs wet when you notice the presence of mold.   Where do you usually see mold growing?  Dark, damp, warm or wet area is most common.  Sunny and warm tends to keep things drier. 

 

Mold will not grow just because something suddenly got wet either.  Get it dried out or at least the drying process started within 48 hours and you should be in good shape. 

 

When ever in doubt give SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin a call.  We will be happy to discuss your concern and take a look at it for you. 

Mold- You can't escape it

2/24/2017 (Permalink)

Well there may be one place without mold...

Mold, Mold and more Mold.


 


Did you know it's a fact that mold is everywhere all the time.  We cannot escape it.   When a Mold Assessment Consultant (MAC) is called out to do a mold analysis, one thing they may do is pull some air samples.  The MAC will then send the samples to the lab for analysis.  Once the results are back the MAC will be reviewing and comparing the indoor to the outdoor air with regards to mold sport count and species. 


 


There are no set standards or regulations for what is an acceptable level of mold spores for indoor air quality.  LESS than outside is the goal.  Sometimes a little less is fine other times you may want it a lot less.  So if mold species xyz is really high outside the MAC may not just accept a little lower indoor counts.  If the mold is Stachybotrys (the Black Mold) chances are the MAC will not approve of any counts indoors. 


 


My point to all this is there are a lot of variables to what is considered an acceptable level of mold and it can be quite subjective.  There is no such thing as a mold free home.


 


Any more questions give us a call here at SERPVRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin.

Emergency Ready Profile for Commercial Property Managers

11/22/2016 (Permalink)

ERP as simple as tapping the icon

Do you manage commercial property?  Does all your staff or on call personnel know where all the shutoffs are located?  Do you have a vendor ready selected who knows your building as well as your staff.  SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin can help. 

 

You need to check our FREE Emergency Ready Profile app.  Free to you we will come out and set up your property using our mobile device app.  We will ask you lots of questions and then load all your preferences right into the app so it all can be shared with your entire staff and our personnel. 

 

Image you have a water loss on a Sunday afternoon.  You open the app and simply tap the icon and you are on the phone with our on call staff.  If you have a particular area for access our staff already know that.  They will also have a photo of the designated are for easy recognition. 

 

If you staff is busy and need assistance accessing areas to mitigate the loss our staff will be able to immediately start assisting with all the data that in mobile app. 

 

This is a FREE service to you for you and your people.  We can also set you up so you can add and modify all the data you want to put in the mobile application.  Call us today we come out and give you a live demonstration and did I mention its FREE.  Don't delay.  

Cleaning Mold affected clothing, soft goods and textiles.

11/22/2016 (Permalink)

Esporta Wash System

What do you do with clothing that was exposed to mold in your home?  Assuming your loss falls within the standards and written protocol they can be cleaned.   The method per the IICRC S520 standards is by laundry only. 

 

So I have some good news and some concerning news about the process.  Good news is we have a very specialized machine designed to clean contaminated textiles to a food grad clean.  It call Esporta Wash Systems.  This machine is capable of cleaning just about anything we can load into it.

 

It can clean sporting equipment such as football gear as well as leather.  We have cleaned lots of leather jackets and more shoes than I care to count. 

 

Not only does it clean to the food grade clean we can often remove spots that you were unable to remove in prior cleanings. 

 

So what is the bad news you ask.  Due the standard method for mold is laundry only some dry clean items don't always survive.  The wetting of the garment is usually not the challenge.  It usually has to do with shrinkage, bleeding or being very delicate, such as lace or sequins. 

 

Don't fear our overall success rate of cleaning soft goods and textiles is about 98%.  SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin, we not only can handle your mold remediation project we can clean you cloth and content too.  

Multi Million Dollar Home Flooded or have Water Damage

10/25/2016 (Permalink)

Your House?

Water damage or a flooded home is something you should leave to the professionals.  Call someone like SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin.   We have being in the business for over 18 years and been remediating mold almost as long.  Why a profession you ask. 

 

The architecture of one's home can make a big impact on what and how structural materials are affected by water migration. Knowing an experienced water restoration expert can make the difference in your home being dried properly, vs risking mold damage.  Knowing where to look for water penetrations is difficult to teach in a class.  Only years of experience guide an expert through the sometimes tricky explorations of where water has migrated.  Make sure you know who to call before the damage happens. 

Spring Rains, Rising Water, Road Closures = Lake Travis is Full Again

7/20/2016 (Permalink)

Dixie Enjoying Lake Travis

Spring rains caused server flooding throughout Austin Texas.  SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin completed dozens of jobs for flood victims.  Many areas were impacted by inches of rain fall in very short period of time creating rising water in areas that don't usually flood.  The Austin area experienced dozens of road closures due to high waters.  SERVPRO had a two automobiles delivered to their shop to dry out and clean.  They were flooded due to the rising waters. 

But you know the best part about all this flooding?   Lake Travis is full again!!!  This dog works so hard during the week, as you can see here, without some quality down time she would not make the next week. 

Work Hard and Play Hard my friends, but stay safe.  

Water Damage - Temporary Power

7/20/2016 (Permalink)

Temporary Power - Fire or Water Damge

SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin is ready for your disaster.   Did you know that a plumbing leak could affect enough of your house that it might not be possible to dry everything with the electrical power your house has available. 

Seems crazy doesn't it.  Not all homes have the same amount of amperage  available to run all the equipment needed.   Sometimes older homes may have the amperage available but the age of the circuits just won't hold without popping breakers.   

For Safety reasons we try to only use 75-80% of the breakers amperage rating.   Today's equipment is getting more and more efficient but we still often need more power.  

So what is the solution you ask?  A trailer mounted generator.  That's right, just like the ones you may remember seeing at the country rodeo or fair. 

The trailer mounted generator is also a great piece of equipment to have during storm events when all the power is out. 

As you can imagine this is not a piece of equipment we use every week or month but we feel it was a wise investment.  We are always striving to be prepared to better serve our customers.  Faster to Any Disaster.  

Indoor Air Quality - HVAC Duct Cleaning

7/20/2016 (Permalink)

Does our HVAC Air Filter look like this

We all know the single most important thing you can do to prolong your vehicle's life is changing the oil.  Vacuuming and regular air filter changes would be consider about the same as changing the oil in your car.  But what about other maintenance? The coolant system, brakes, transmission are all important right?.  There is a similarity in the air quality of your home as well.  Routine air duct cleaning is among one of those a home owner should consider.

We are asked to look at a lot of homes where the chief complaint is "we always seem to be sick" and they suspect its mold.  Usually there is no mold visibly present, and no musty odors to be found.  What can however be observed is two dogs, carpet that doesn't even know what a vacuum is, dust covered ceiling fans and window sills and a HVAC return vent with half an inch of hair, dust, and general house filth....you get the idea.

General housekeeping procedures say you should have your air ducts cleaned every 3-7 years depending on building occupancy and use.  If you have five dogs, two cats, three kids and live in 2000 square foot home you may want to clean your ducts every year.  What is worse, prolonged build up becomes more and more difficult to remove and aggressive cleaning can result in collateral damage to the ducts themselves.

Don't wait until it is too late to keep your indoor air quality under control,  Call SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin today.

Content Storage for your Fire and Smoke Damaged Home

7/20/2016 (Permalink)

Stack Rack and Vaults

SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin is buying more equipment to better serve our customers.  When a house is damaged by fire or heavy smoke we often pack the house out.  That is right we pack everything up and move it to our shop for cleaning and storage. 

We do this because we can clean your smoke damged content better at our facilities and the contractor needs the room to work. 

So what do we do with it all after we clean it?  We store your content in large wooden vaults and stack racks.  We discovered these stack racks a couple years ago and we love them.  They stack efficiently when full and very neat and efficient when empty.  The vaults take up the same area regardless if they are full or empty. 

We just made another purchase of and now have over 250 of these stack rack.  We even store some or stuff on them to keep things somewhat tidy around here.  

Esporta Wash Systems

7/20/2016 (Permalink)

Esporta 4000

SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin is your one stop shop for Fire and Smoke Damage Restoration.  Not only can we handle your structure and content cleaning we can now handle you Textiles.  We have expanded our cleaning division and purchased an Esporta Systems.  The system is a unique patented technology that is setting the standard for textiles and soft content cleaning.  It is 5 times more effective that traditional laundry with less water consumption.   

We clean contaminated clothing from fires, floods, and mold jobs in this machine.  It also meets or exceeds all National Fire Protection Association ( NFPA ) standards for cleaning Fireman's PPE.

Items such as leather jackets, shoes, hats can be cleaned and salvaged where in the past they were often considered non salvageable and tossed in the dumpster. 

We believe this machine will soon be a necessity for all cleaning and restoration companies.  

Cheryl - video from SERVPRO convention

Commercial Drying – Secondary Damage

5/25/2016 (Permalink)

flood

More often than not a large commercial building has one or more spaces which either is currently unoccupied, or rarely used.  These spaces suffer considerable damage when moisture goes unnoticed for a couple days or longer.  This type of loss will often have what is called "Secondary Damage".  The humidity can get so high it that condensation will form on all the walls and ceiling.   

A situation like this creates a challenge in determining just how wet the structure really is.  The condensation will also cause inaccurate moisture readings in building materials not directly impacted by the water source.   So all the walls and ceiling that never came into direct contact with the water source will read 100% saturated.  As you can imagine this can create challenges for the untrained person as well as an inaccurate scope of work needed.

SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin recommends if you have a space like this in your building make sure to have it viewed at least once a day!

Mold tips: Air duct cleaning

5/25/2016 (Permalink)

Duct Work

Cleaning the air ducts in your home or office is one of the best ways to maintain indoor air quality.  A good regime is to have them professionally cleaned every 3 to 5 years depending on the capacity and use of the building.  Homes with multiple kids and pets, or buildings with high traffic flow are best cleaned more often.  Homes or buildings with less traffic can go a little longer. 

But what if mold is suspected in the ducts?  Mold in the air ducts is almost always a sign of another more significant issue: a fault in the system, poor ventilation or high humidity in the home.   

By performing regular cleaning one can ensure that a buildup of dust and mold spores will be minimized.  It is also recommend you get your HVAC system checked annually for proper operation.  Not only will it help minimize air quality concerns it will help keep your HVAC running efficiently.

Call SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin today to schedule your inspection.

Fire Damage tips- Food and Medications

5/25/2016 (Permalink)

Soot

One of the more common concerns after a large house fire is should the food and medications be disposed of.  As a structure burns any number of contaminants is added into the environment.  Many of which are not only toxic to inhale, but to ingest as well.  So anything the smoke has come in contact would be of concern. 

When heavy smoke and soot is present it is common to dispose of all food.  This would included air tight sealed packages as well as canned goods.  This is due to the exposure of heat.  Bathroom items such as all makeup, toothpaste and medications should be disposed of as well.

Contamination and heat exposure levels are difficult to determine and therefore make it very difficult to determine the salvageablity of these items.  Your health is just not worth the risk. 

Make sure to work with an industry professional like SERVPRO of Hyde Park/ Central Austin if you ever sustain fire or smoke damage.

Sever Storm Tips - Hand Held Radios

5/23/2016 (Permalink)

Hello!

Do you live in a coastal region or flood plain?  Do you own a pair of hand held radios?  If not, SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin believes you should seriously consider purchasing a pair.   Cell phones have drastic disadvantages during a server storm event.   Cell tower will be down and the power outages may affect the cell service. 

Hand held radios don't require towers.  You should be able to get continuous weather reports and constant communication. 

Keep a pack of batteries along with your hand help radios.  Today's battery have a very long shelf life.  Battery life for most hand held radios will last for days.

Even if you don't live in the coastal region you might have good reason for a set of hand held radio?

Severe Storm Tips - The Curfew

5/23/2016 (Permalink)

Stop - There is a Curfew

One of the things I am commonly asked by friends and family is why a curfew is placed in areas during a storm event.  First, one must understand that the emergency responders are affected by the storm as well.  Quite often police officers and firemen have their own homes drastically affected by storms.  Second, power and communication are incapacitated so even if emergency responders were at full staff, communication is limited.   

The “invisible dangers” are what is most concerning.  The things you can see at night and don't expect.   Traffic signals not working due to downed power lines.  The power lines themselves on the ground can be a hazard.  The road may not be safe due to sink holes or collapsed bridges.

It is amazing how dark and different a city is at night when there is not power and everything is dark.  Suddenly familiar areas become confusing.  It is very easy to get yourself into trouble quickly. 

SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin highly recommends you follow the laws during a storm event and stay safe.  

Commercial Property Managers and Engineer Training at SERVPRO Hyde Park / Central Austin

5/23/2016 (Permalink)

Training

SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin recently had the pleasure of hosting a wonderful group of commercial property managers and engineers.  In this industry education goes a long way when dealing with tenants.  We were able to educate our guests on how to properly identify and scope potential water damages, identify hidden concerns and address the infamous  mold question.  Along the way, the group was able to tour our facility to see Esporta machine we use for textile cleaning from fire as well as our Ultrasonic cleaning line.  Once our training was complete we allowed our guests to utilize our train room for a meeting of their own.  It worked out great for everyone. 

Feel free to contact us directly if you are interested in learning more about services or educational training.....Who knows,  maybe we will buy you all lunch.

Water Damage that is difficult to Dry

5/12/2016 (Permalink)

Gym at a local Austin, TX school

When you call SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin for a water loss we don't just come out and demo everything out.  We follow IICRC S500 the industry standards for water damage.  Our responsibility in mitigating your loss is to limit any further damages.   Damages are not always caused by the water.  Sometimes the service company deems everything non salvageable and removes everything that is wet causing more damage than the water. 

The industry has been slowly migrating to drying materials in place limiting the need for repairs once your house is dried out.  Our team has been practicing these methods for over 15  years now. 

Sometimes this calls for some creative drying methods especially on commercial jobs where demolition may not be an option and time is critical.   We can often dry difficult to reach moisture by adding containment, tenting or specialized drying equipment that can inject air. 

You can see some of this type of drying on our Facebook page.  Be sure to read the photo captions.

Austin gets hit will heavy rains and flooding spring of 2016

4/29/2016 (Permalink)

Rising Flood Waters in Austin, TX

  Heavy rains, flooding and large hail has caused millions in damages to Texas residents and businesses. 

Lots of times the rising flood waters are not covered claims due to home owners and business locations not requiring them to carry flood insurance.  If you are in an area in risk of rising water check with your agent about your coverage's. 

If you do have flood coverage be clear about what is exactly is covered and the limits.  Flood insurance coverage is not as broad as your sudden and accidental water damage coverage that most policies have.

When the flood waters recede start getting estimates and start your process of salvaging things you want to keep.   If you had several inches or feet of water in your house the IICRC states all affected porous materials must be removed.  The short definition of what that means is we find a dry line above the water line and we remove everything from that point down.  This is also known as  flood cut. 

Time is important but don't feel like you have to have your house flood cut and cleaned up in the first 24-48 hrs.  Keep in mind the mitigation companies are very busy and their list is long.   

Before you hire someone ask to speak with a customer they just finished.  It might even be a neighbor and you can go see the final results.  Don't feel pressured into signing up if you are not comfortable. 

SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin has been handling rising flood water losses in Austin since 1998.  We are very knowledgeable and understand the trauma a loss like this can cause a family.  We are here to help.

Fire and smoke damage can be catastrophic

4/21/2016 (Permalink)

Heat melting plastics

The soot and smoke damage is the obvious part; and the odor is of course noticeable even from outside a heavily damaged structure. Water damage from the fire department is not nearly as noticeable but can be just as devastating. but it is heat damage that requires a trained eye, and a highly experienced assessor to address.  There isn't much in the way of mitigation when it comes to heat damage; once it's done it's done! It's restore vs replace from start to finish.   Food and medications are chemically altered. Makeup is generally ruined as well. As you can see in the photo plastics are re-shaped, and even dense substrates can be stretched or even compressed.  Heat damage is yet another reason to consult with SERVPRO(r) of Hyde Park/ Central Austin.   Check out our Before and After Photos  

Do You Know if Your House has Lead Based Paint

3/7/2016 (Permalink)

Lead Check from a Water Job

In 2010 federal law started requiring all contractors performing renovation, repair and painting projects to test for lest based a paint for construction prior to 1978.    You will need an EPA RRP Certified firm who will be using EPA Certified Renovators.     

SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin is an EPA RRP Certified Firm and has a team of certified renovators who can handling all our Lead Testing and Renovation needs in Austin, TX and the surrounding areas.  Water Damage, Fire Demo, Mold Remediation are just some of the areas we often find it necessary to test for Lead prior to starting the work.  The EPA Website has lots of info for you to research.  The EPA also has a brochure called The Lead Safe Certified Guide to Renovate Right that will most likely answer all our renovation question.    

SXSW time again Austin TX...ARE YOU READY

3/7/2016 (Permalink)

We here at SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin we support our local community and event.  Every year we have several employees who volunteer or work to provide a better, safer and more enjoyable SXSW experience for those who attend.   Be sure to recognize and thank the people working for so many are doing it for personal reasons other than making money.  Austin is a great city but it's the people that really make an even like SXSW come alive. 

When you head down to the outdoor events don't forget to take your necessities.   Your photo ID, Cash, Sun Block, Chapstick, Sun Glasses and Hat.    If you want to save some money take a refillable water bottle.  Watch the weather too.  It is pretty common for Austin to have a rain shower or two during SXSW.   Then go enjoy.

SERVPRO Top Chili Pepper at Annual AAFAME Chili Slam

2/22/2016 (Permalink)

Top Chili Pepper

SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin is the top sponsor, TOP CHILI PEPPER, at the 24th Annual Chili Slam.  This is a members only event for AAFAME & BOMA members.  This appreciation day is held at Krieg Field on April 29, 2016.  There will be a Chili cook off and plenty of other things to eat.  Lots of competitions, horseshoes, washers are among some of the favorites.

Those who have attended never miss another one!  Travis who is one of the partners here, has been attending for years.  He and another teammate take part in the Horseshoe competition every year.   They have taken 1st place in 2009, 2nd place in 2012, 1st place in 2014, and 1st place in 2015.  Let see if they can do it again this year.  

Insurance Continuing Education Course held by local Austin, TX SERVPRO

2/11/2016 (Permalink)

Our Classroom at our office.

SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin is holding two CE courses for local Insurance Agents and Adjusters.  It free of charge. 

We are holding the mandatory Ethics in the morning and Deodorization of Malodors in the afternoon. 

There will be a continental breakfast and lunch served for all who attend. 

These are a great way to get out of the daily grind and enjoy the company of your industry peers.  There will be some story telling and I am sure few jokes.  Overall is a great way for a relaxing day and earn some credits.

If you can't make it don't worry keep an eye out on our website CE schedule or email us for the next scheduled course offering.  If you have a topic you prefer let us know and we'll get it scheduled for you.  

Local Restoration Company's Office Floods

1/21/2016 (Permalink)

The corner of my office has Water Damage

Even SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin is not exempt from water damage.   Heavy rains compounded with a landscaping issue caused water to back up into my office.   

This is a pretty common occurrence among office buildings.  Usually someone sets a fan on the carpet and it will be dry by quitting time, right.  That's how the mold issues can get started.  I didn't say that would cause mold from this single event. 

If all you do is dry the carpet  it is highly probable that you are leaving wet materials unattended too.  The drywall is most likely wet behind the cove base and maybe some materials like wall studs and base plate, depending on the construction type. 

Leaving the cove base on makes for slower drying due to the cove base covering up the wet materials.    

Try to imagine how many times these same materials might have gotten wet from prior rains.  Not the carpet too, just enough rain for the water to seep into the walls but not getting the carpet wet.

A continuation of the wetting and rewetting of a wall over a duration of years from an exterior leak can lead to a mold inside the walls.  

Don't let a common Water Damage turn into a Mold Remediation project.  

To see some of our job before and after photos Click Here

Ultrasonic Cleaning System now at local SERVPRO in Austin

1/21/2016 (Permalink)

Here is our line up waiting for it's next Fire and Soot Clean Up

SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin has added an Ultrasonic Cleaning Line to their cleaning network.

Ultrasonic cleaning has been around for quite some time.  These machine are great for cleaning intricate items where one can't access for a good thorough cleaning that is needed in Fire and Soot clean up. 

Perfect example you are probably familiar with is at the jewelry store when they clean the diamond ring.  Ultrasonic cleaning is the best way to get under the diamond and prongs where they can't access with other cleaning methods. 

We have not and probably will never clean a diamond ring in our Ultrasonic machine but the principles are the same.  Figurines and crystal are among some of the common items that are a perfect match for the Ultrasonic system. 

A bonus for the SERVPRO crew is using the ultrasonic machine to clean all the washable content.  We get a better final clean result with less handling.

  To see some of our job before and after photos Click Here

Entrepreneur lists SERVPRO #4 of the top 10 Franchises for 2015

1/21/2016 (Permalink)

The SERVPRO Franchise System is listed as number 4 again in 2016 for best franchise.  

We here at SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin want to say congratulations to a great Team and Family in Gallatin TN.  We are glad to be part of it. 

We have been in the restoration business in Austin, TX since 1998.  Prior to us joining the SERVPRO franchise network we were an independent company.  We joined the network for several reasons.  The Biggest reasons are Systems and Processes.  Growing a business may or may not be difficult for some people but growing a business that is profitable and sustainable is not so easy.  The SERVPRO system really makes it easy for franchises to growth a good strong business that is sustainable and generational.  

http://www.entrepreneur.com/franchises/SERVPRO/

Mold Keeps Coming Back

1/19/2016 (Permalink)

Here are SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin people call asking why the mold keeps coming back.   The customer will say they cleaned it up and a few weeks later the mold keeps coming back. 

It is most likely that you have an undetermined moisture issue here.  There are a lot of factors involved in figuring out what the moisture source or issue is.   Things to consider are location of the mold, how is the area used, how often is the area used, what is the area used for, what kind of materials is the area constructed of, is there pluming in the wall of the area, is the area a common wall with exterior of the home. 

Some common issues we have seen is a leak from the exterior of the house where a sprinkler sprays the house and leaks in just a little bit every day.  Not enough to cause a wet spot but enough for the mold to grow well.   Same results from leaking plumbing that just drips a little. 

Another example is a high humidity situation from a bathroom without enough ventilation.  Building materials that don't breath can also make these situations more difficult. 

If you have any questions regarding Mold Remediation don't hesitate to give us a call and we will be happy to assist you.

To see some of our job before and after photos Click Here

Can I spray something to Kill the Mold

1/19/2016 (Permalink)

I wished mold remediation was this easy.

SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin has been asked by many people, can't I just spray something on the mold to kill it? 

I am not going to get into health effects of mold on humans.   However, if you  have a health reaction to mold, more than likely you will not experience any improvements by killing the mold.   

Mold remediation is a process of removing and cleaning all the mold-affected materials and areas.  When removal is not a feasible option, we can encapsulate molded materials after thoroughly cleaning.  We typically only encapsulate when the moldy materials are structural and not practical to remove.   We then use products specifically made for encapsulation and not just paint.          

Even if you are a do-it-yourselfer, don't just spray something on the mold to kill it.

If you have any questions regarding Mold Remediation don't hesitate to give us a call and we will be happy to assist you.

To see some of our job before and after photos Click Here

Preferred Vendor vs Non Preferred Vendor

1/19/2016 (Permalink)

We are here to help

SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin is a preferred vender for most insurance companies.  We have been on some programs for over 16 years.  

I have heard people say you don't want to use a program vendor.  That preferred vendors only do the bare minimum and they only do what the insurance company says to do.  Those are not true statements. 

As a trusted vendor for many carriers if I can justify something they will pay for it on any covered claim.  In 18 years I have never had an insurance company or home owner come back to me for something that was not justified.

Insurance companies want you to renew your policy.  They know you need to been taken care of.  They only want good qualified companies representing them as a preferred vendor.  Price is not the insurance companies number one motive. 

Would you consider going out of network on your health insurance?  Probably not, simply because the carrier may not or will not pay for  your doctor visit.  I am not suggesting your carrier won't cover your claim because you don't use a program vendor, but you may run into challenges if a non program company does something your carrier doesn't approve of.  As a trusted vendor I can get approvals on questionable concerns very quickly. 

Water Damge, Fire or smoke, a preferred vendor really can make the claim process go much smoother.

To see some of our job before and after photos Click Here

What kind of mold do we have? Is this the bad black mold?

1/19/2016 (Permalink)

Lab sample petri dishes of mold

Probably the most common two questions we get are what kind is it and is it the bad black stuff?   Both are great questions, but not questions we cannot answer and ones that don't have much impact in how we remediate the affected areas.  

If or when you hire a Mold Assessment Consultant  (MAC)  they may take some samples which would tell them the types and levels.  The principal behind mold remediation is to remove it all regardless of what kind it is. 

SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin has been remediating mold since before the mold regulations existed.

It is our recommendation to not focus too much on the type of mold you have.  Pay more attention to the resume of your MAC and Mold Remediation Contractor. 

To see some of our job before and after photos Click Here

Trauma Scene Biohazard Clean Up

1/19/2016 (Permalink)

Before photo from a clean up we completed.

SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin can clean up blood, feces, and other body fluids  in cars, homes and offices resulting from gun shots, stabbings, over doses, suicides, murder scenes as well as natural deaths.

A Trauma Scene or Biohazard Clean Up job is not something anyone wants to deal with.

We understand the emotions friends and family are faced with.   We are here to help you through that. 

It is not uncommon for the family to need something from within the home but they do not want to enter.  We can go in and find those needed items for you whether it is a laptop, a piece of jewelry or photograph.   Any special request you have let us know.  We will go out of our way to help you.

To see some of our job before and after photos Click Here

Burglary and Cleanup, Lake Travis

1/19/2016 (Permalink)

If you look closely you can see the fine finger print dust on the stainless railing, the table as well and on the floor in front of the bed.

Local SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin was called out to clean finger print dust. 

Austin, TX, Boats burglarized on Lake Travis.  Burglars broke into 5 large boats at local marina.  They cause 1000's of dollars in damage gaining entry and took 1000's of dollars in personal belongings from the boat owners.

Police investigation involved questioning owners and finger printing of one boat where the Burglars settled in eating and drinking the boat owners food.

SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin a local restoration company known for Biohazard / Trauma Scene Cleanup and Disaster Restoration was called out.  SERVPRO routinely cleans up fire and smoke losses and dries out water damage home and commercial buildings.   Many people don't know who to look for when it comes to uncommon yet challenging cleanup like finger print dust.   Finger print dust is not something your general house cleaner should attempt.  Save yourself some time and call out the professionals,  SERVPRO.

To see some of our job before and after photos Click Here

Experienced Mold Remediation Company needed

1/14/2016 (Permalink)

Shower stall with grout failure.

SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin has been completing mold remediation projects in the Austin area for over 16 years. 

We are a licensed with the Texas Department of State Health Services (TDSHS) as a Mold Remediation Company.  Two of the owners hold TDSHS Mold Remediation Contractor Licenses. 

All of our water technicians are state registered Mold Remediation Workers.   We feel the more training our staff has the better we are prepared to service our customers when they run into unforeseen or hidden mold on a job. 

We don't use scare tactics to sell our services.  We shoot you straight at a fair price.

So if you have Mold Remediation concerns, whether big or small, commerical or residential, we can help you.  If yo need mold testing we can help with that too.

To see some of our job before and after photos Click Here

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