Understanding What Happens to Building Materials When They Get Wet
Home suffering from Water Loss
Water damage from any type of water deluge can be devastating to a home’s structure and not just to the contents within it. From swelling wood to supply line damage, the damage that an influx of water has the potential to cause can be costly and extensive. If you want to know what to expect from a burst pipe, flood or any other type of water issue, keep reading. Some common issues that stem result from sitting water include:
• Weak drywall
• Swollen wood
• Ineffective insulation
• Bad electrical
• Contaminated furniture and flooring
Common Structural Issues From Water Damage
Though a burst pipe is unlikely to cause the foundational damage a flood can cause, it can still wreak havoc on your home. If your home has been subject to several water deluges in the past, you may notice a few subtle signs.
For one, your drywall may become weak and begin to crumble, get soft or grow mold. If this happens, your drywall needs to be replaced and the structure of your home dried out, otherwise the swelling wood will continue to swell and cause additional damage. If your walls are plaster, you may be able to get away with simply drying the material.
Another sign you may notice is that your home doesn’t retain heat or cool air as well as it once did. Water damaged insulation is no longer effective and should be replaced when the drywall is replaced.
Depending on how extensive the damage was, you may notice that some outlets or switches don’t work as well. If there are electrical lines behind the damaged areas of drywall, the water surge may be the cause.
Finally, you may notice that your furniture and flooring take on a musty, moldy smell. If this happens, chances are because your furniture and carpet are contaminated, in which case, you would be better off replacing those items.
From swelling wood to bad electrical, a burst pipe can wreak havoc. If you’ve recently experienced a water surge, contact your St. Charles, IL, water restoration team for immediate and effective water pipe repair and restoration efforts.
Visit us at http://www.SERVPROstcharlesgenevabatavia.com for more information.
A Quick Guide to Black Water and How To Handle It
Commercial Water Loss
Whether because of a big storm in St. Charles, IL, or a backed-up toilet, water damage on your business property means shutting the door to take care of cleanup, and shut doors mean lost business. The key to restoring your property to working order as quickly as possible is knowing what black water is and how to deal with it.
What Is Black Water?
Simply put, black water is wastewater that is full of sewage or other biological materials that are dangerous to humans. The water is highly contaminated and should be avoided as much as possible. This water can enter your business property in several ways.
- Backed-up toilet
- Backed-up sink or shower drains
- Burst pipes
- Flood waters after a storm
What Do You Do if You Find Contaminated Water in Your Building?
If you find sewage water inside your property, don't try to remove it by yourself. The water may be dangerous. Instead, hire a professional company that is experienced in removing toxic sewage water from buildings. The company will have the proper equipment, knowledge and experience to remove the water and help you start the process of drying your business out.
What Are Some Things To Keep in Mind?
When dealing with contaminated flood water, you must keep some things in mind. While you don't need to throw out everything, many items will need to be replaced. Toss anything that is wooden, cardboard, paper or porous plastic. These items can absorb the water and the bacteria and pose a hazard. This is especially important if you own a food service company or a similar type of business. Metal and glass items might be salvageable but will require a thorough sanitation process first.
You shouldn't deal with water damage from contaminated water alone. Calling professionals ensures you get back on track and reopen your company's doors as soon as possible.
Visit us at http://www.SERVPROstcharlesgenevabatavia.com for more information.
3 Ways to Prevent Mold From Taking Over Your Rental
Owning a rental home in Geneva, IL is a great source of side income, but it requires the same amount of maintenance and care as the home you live in yourself. This ownership means taking precautions with mold prevention, learning what to do in the event of mold growth and how to properly handle any water damage that may arise from moisture problems or environmental hazards. Read on to learn three ways to prevent mold from taking over your rental property.
1. Keep the heating system low, but try not to completely turn it off. Large heating bills aside, leaving your heating system on, even at a lower temperature, can help ward off the possibility of mold reproduction. If water leaks or excessive moisture are present in the home, high heat can increase the humidity in these areas, which is the perfect environment for mold to grow in. However, turning off the system completely can also bring about temperature fluctuations, which would produce condensation or invite added dampness to the infested space. Overall, leaving the heat on but at a lower temperature is the happy medium you want for mold prevention.
2. If mold is apparent due to a moisture issue, turn off the water immediately. Growing mold relies on water as one of its main sources of survival. Shutting off the water supply inhibits mold from spreading and keeps greater damage from occurring in the home due to leaky windows or plumbing.
3. Ensure the home has proper ventilation. Make sure that areas of high humidity like the kitchens and bathrooms have exhaust fans. Check to see that any laundry facilities also vent outdoors properly and keep dehumidifiers in the home if moisture is a continuous problem.
When your rental home in Geneva, IL experiences any type of mold growth or water damage, call professionals for further advice on how to proceed with remediation. Once the cleanup is addressed and completed, follow these three methods for mold prevention to avoid any moisture problems in the future. Visit http://www.SERVPROstcharlesgenevabatavia.com for more information on mold.
If Your Building Catches Fire, Will You Be Prepared?
Whether you own a multi-million-dollar corporation that operates out of a large commercial building or run a small, family-owned business that works out of a one-room retail store, it is important that you have a fire contingency plan in place. Your emergency plan should be well thought out; otherwise, you risk disorganization, chaos, confusion and injury in the event of a real emergency. To minimize damages and increase emergency response time, your evacuation plan should include the following:
• Minimum requirements
• An evacuation route
• A safe zone
• Emergency contacts
Your contingency plan should, at the very least, include an action plan that is specific to your industry and worksite. An insurance agency can help you assess your risks, and the local fire department or a Geneva, IL fire damage control team can help you draft a plan that addresses both those exposures and any obstacles posed by your building itself (e.g., layout, structural features, etc.).
Plan an Evacuation Route
Your evacuation plan should include a map of the best evacuation routes for each area of the building. In addition to showing occupants how to safely exit the building, your plan should also give clear directions to the nearest safety zone.
Establish a Safe Zone
Once all of your building’s occupants have made it out safely, they’ll need somewhere to go. Pick one location per emergency route where all occupants can gather. You will want to get a headcount and assess damages, which can be difficult to do if everyone is scattered across town.
Include Emergency Contacts
Your evacuation plan should include a list of emergency contacts, such as the local fire department, the Geneva, IL fire restoration team, local medical centers, a burn unit and an organization that deals in chemicals and hazardous waste.
Every business’s contingency plan is going to be different, but every business should have one. For more tips on what makes a strong evacuation plan, visit the United States Department of Labor. Visit http://www.SERVPROstcharlesgenevabatavia.com for more information on commercial fire damage.
Restoring Your Home After a Fire
Having your home and belongings damaged by a fire can be devastating for everyone involved. However, by getting content cleaning and fire restoration services on the job right away and investing in a few things like dry-cleaning and content storage, you can help to bring your home back to its former glory. There are a few steps you should follow to get everything on track for recovery:
• Getting in touch with your insurance company
• Locating a reliable fire and smoke cleanup crew
• Finding a storage space for undamaged belongings
After dealing with emergency services, your insurance company should be the first call you make. Your insurance professionals can help estimate how much your repairs will cost and direct you to fire cleaning professionals in St. Charles, IL who are covered by your homeowners insurance. This can help you get the financial support you need during the recovery process.
Choosing Your Crew
While your insurance company will likely suggest and endorse a number of cleanup crews, it’s ultimately up to you to decide who you want to trust with your home content cleaning. Do your research and find a company that has a reputation for getting the job done right and for following up on their results after you’re settled back into your home.
Finding Storage Solutions
During your cleanup process, crews are likely to use machines and chemicals that rid your home of smoke smells. It’s always a good idea to move undamaged belongings into a storage unit until your home is completely repaired to protect them from dust, debris, and even water from damaged roofing or pipes. Dry-cleaning may be appropriate for some minimally damaged belongings.
Between dry-cleaning, working with insurance agents and all of the other steps of content cleaning after a fire, the home recovery process can be a long one. However, it’s well worth it to feel safe and secure in your own home again.
Visit http://www.SERVPROstcharlesgenevabatavia.com for more information on fire damage.
How to Keep Pipes Safe During a Freeze
Winter can be a beautiful and festive time of year. However, if you don’t adequately prepare your home, the freezing temperatures of winter can cause frozen pipes that burst and flood your house. If that happens, you could end up needing professional restoration services and water line repair. Here are some of the most vulnerable pipes:
• Outdoor pipes for pools and sprinklers
• Units in basements
• Pipes in attics and garages
• Units under kitchen and bathroom cabinets
Avoid frozen pipes in these areas with a few steps.
Drain Outdoor Lines
If you have a swimming pool or a sprinkler system, follow the manufacturer’s directions for draining the supply lines before a freeze comes to St. Charles, IL. You may be tempted to use antifreeze in these outdoor areas, but such chemicals can be harmful to the environment, your yard, your animals, and children.
Insulate Indoor Areas
Pipes in basements, attics, garages, and crawl spaces freeze because these areas aren’t always well insulated. While the rest of your house may be comfortable when the weather is cold, these areas can see below freezing temperatures. Adding insulation in these parts of your home can keep the temperatures safer for pipes.
The pipes in your kitchen and bathroom cabinets can get too cold because your heater doesn’t affect the air around them. You can use heat tape or a similar product to keep these pipes safe from freezing temperatures. You may also consider a pipe sleeve. If a sudden freeze is coming and you don’t have these products, you can wrap the pipes in a newspaper and keep the cabinets open.
If you do end up with frozen pipes that burst, be sure to turn off the water supply to the pipe and secure the area. Then, you can call a professional restoration company to fix the damage. Doing so can help keep mold and other damage at bay. Visit http://www.SERVPROstcharlesgenevabatavia.com for more information on water damage.
Getting Rid of Bad Odors After a Flood
Flooding in St. Charles, IL can have a lot of consequences for your home, not the least of which is the bad odor left behind even after the water is gone. Prevent your property from being flooded with unpleasant smells, or, if they are already there, get rid of them by taking a few simple restoration measures.
Odors after flooding can be the result of mold growth. Mold can easily grow during and after flooding because of the moist conditions created by the water. Mold usually creates a stale or musty odor that can be quite unpleasant. One of the best ways to prevent this can be to stop mold from ever growing in the first place. Since fungus grows fast, as quickly as during the first 24 hours after flooding, you’ll need to act fast to keep it away. A restoration service can help you accomplish this by doing the following:
• Tearing out damaged drywall and other wet materials
• Dehumidifying the home
• Using bleach or other products to kill any remaining mold spores
While you may not be thrilled at the thought of replacing carpets and other materials, it can be worth it in the long run to avoid bad smells and worsening damage.
If your home already suffers from nasty odors, one way to fix it can be to disinfect the areas where you believe the smell is coming from. Even if mold growth is not immediately visible in these areas, microorganisms left behind from the flood water may still be present.
Restoration services can be useful in these situations as well and can help you make sure the disinfection process is completed safely and thoroughly. Again, while some items can be deodorized and salvaged, others, especially porous materials, may have to be replaced.
By preventing mold growth, you can avoid the unpleasant odors left behind after flooding. Stop smells before they happen by replacing damaged materials and drying out wet areas as quickly as possible.
Visit http://www.SERVPROstcharlesgenevabatavia.com for more information on storm damage.
4 Common Causes of Pipe Bursts
Burst pipes can wreak havoc on any commercial property in St. Charles, IL. Whether pipe burst cleanup is required in the kitchen or basement, you need to take prompt action to save as much of your property as possible. It is always best to prevent supply line leaking rather than wait until something catastrophic happens, so you should be aware of what typically causes this type of flooding.
One cause of bursting pipes is simply the pipes becoming too old to function adequately. Many buildings made prior to 1970 have steel pipes, which are prone to early corrosion. In the event corrosion necessitates water cleanup, then you will probably want to undergo a total piping replacement throughout the building before you need a pipe burst cleanup.
This problem is prevalent throughout the colder months of the year. Before winter comes to your town, you should take preventive action to prevent the water inside the pipes from freezing and cracking the surface. You can apply insulation around the pipes to keep them at an optimal temperature. It is also a good idea to run the heater inside your building as often as possible to keep warm air circulating.
3. Tree Roots
Tree roots grow in an array of directions. They may end up damaging pipes located underneath your building, causing a backup. Once a tree root finds a pipe filled with water, it will continue to grow throughout the pipe because it provides a source of nutrients.
Environmental changes can add extra pressure on top of a pipe, causing it to burst and collapse. For example, new construction in your community can affect the soil. The increased weight causes the pipes to collapse and burst. Regardless of the reason, you do not want to wait when it comes to pipe burst cleanup. Find professionals in St. Charles, IL, who will be able to visit your property promptly to clean up the water. Visit http://www.SERVPROstcharlesgenevabatavia.com for more information on commercial water damage.
Steps Toward Fire Damage Restoration
Apartment Complex Fire
Smart Steps Toward St.Charles Fire Damage Restoration
Fire damage to your St. Charles Illinois home or office is devastating, but you should not wait to take steps towards restoring your property. Thanks to your fire alarm system, everyone got out of the building, but now you have to deal with your burned and heat-damaged possessions. When the flames are gone, soot and smoke can continue to cause fire damage. This is why it is important to start restoration as soon as you can.
The First Step To Fire Restoration
You should make notes about what items are ruined or damaged and take photographs too. You’ll be contacting your insurance company and a restoration contractor, so you want to be sure about your circumstances. Misunderstandings are common, but if you have photos and notes, you’ll be in a better position to know the extent of the St. Charles Fire IL, and what needs to be restored or replaced. This should be done within hours after the fire is extinguished.
Once you have a clear picture of the damage, call your insurance company. Hopefully, you can do this the next day. It is important to call them as soon as possible, so they will send an insurance adjustor to your home or office quickly.
Call SERVPRO St.Charles/Geneva/batavia Reputable Fire Damage Restoration Experts
When searching for a local cleaning and restoration contractor, make sure they are Institution of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) certified. These professionals have been trained in the latest restoration technology and have health and safety certification. They will have experience in a wide range of fire damage St. Charles IL, restoration projects. You should also ask for proof or the proper licenses and insurance.
You may be able to locate a restoration contractor who also does reconstruction. This will save you a lot of time and money. They will first board up your home or office so vandals or thieves cannot enter. They will also work directly with your insurance company to create a restoration plan that will return your property to its pre-fire condition. They’ll inform your adjustor about the items that can be cleaned and restored and the ones that need to be replaced. Your restoration contractor should also be able to safely store some of your possessions during recovery.
Fire damage includes much more than burning. There can also be extensive water damage St. Charles/Geneva/Batavia when the fire department puts out the fire as well as smoke damage that can go into every part of the house including places that were untouched by the fire.
Let SERVPRO the Professionals Handle It
You may be tempted to get the restoration process started by cleaning things yourself. This is not recommended because it may only make it worse. Some things to avoid are:
• Wiping walls, ceiling tiles or any absorbent material
• Reusing carpet and upholstery that have smoke damage
• Using any food item including canned goods that were exposed to heat and smoke
• Turning on your computer, TV, or electrical appliances before they have been professionally cleaned
The restoration process after a fire can be stressful, but if you have a certified professional handling your insurance company and the construction, there is a good chance you’ll have a full recovery.
What is the water restoration process?
Water Restoration Process
Once you remove water from your flooded business, start the restoration process. Again, you need a restoration company to do the work. The company will begin by checking the severity of the pipe break, supply line break or any other plumbing issue that might have brought water in your business. After that, they will kick-start the water cleanup process by drying up all the affected areas. There are special drying tools specifically designed to do the job very quickly. Drying the water in your business will prevent the growth of molds in the flooded area.
Once the water in your business is completely dry, the restoration experts will check the walls and other parts of the flooded facility to see the extent of the damage. They will also check to see the extent of pipe break or supply line break and decide if there is need for replacement. They may use their drying tools to cleanup if they find the walls and other areas to be wet.
The water cleanup process will finally end with foundation repair. In some severe cases, the flood water in the business may seep through the floor down to the foundation. The restoration experts will check to see how far the water in the business has gone. In most flood damage cases, the water from supply line break and pipe break do not reach the foundation.
There is a little you can do to prevent flood damage caused by natural disasters such as storms and earthquakes. However, there are a lot of mitigation measures you can employ to reduce the likelihood of flood damage occurring in your business. One mitigation measure involves frequently checking for any incidences of pipe break and supply line break to prevent water damage. There are also other mitigation measures you can employ. You can remove debris from the gutters, seal cracks in the foundation, install window well covers and seal cracks around the house.
Removing debris from the gutter or installing window well covers by yourself is very dangerous. You need a restoration expert to handle these tasks.