Recent Why SERVPRO Posts
Is Mold Cut Out of Your Homeowner’s Insurance Policy?
Mold damage in a property in Bastrop, TX.
Does Your Homeowner's Insurance Cover Mold? More homeowner’s policies exclude mold than cover this form of secondary damage. Fungus growth occurs when water damage is not cleaned quickly or thoroughly enough to avoid leaving time for fungal growth. Property owners can take three measures to determine whether coverage for mold is available under the property insurance policy for a residence in Bastrop,TX.
1. Confirm the Terms of Your Policy
The terms of each insurance policy differ. It is the responsibility of a policyholder to go through these terms before signing up for coverage and paying premiums. If you have not checked the status of mold under your property insurance, you should do so sooner rather than later. A rider on an existing policy or additional coverage may be needed to offset the cost of mold remediation.
2. Consult With an Insurance Agent
A representative of the insurance company that covers your home can explain the circumstances under which fungus growth could be considered a covered peril. Keep in mind that some insurers require agents to report that a customer is considering filing a claim. Seeking independent advice may be preferable if you are experiencing a mold problem and do not want the rate to rise.
3. Supplementary Residential Mold Coverage
Obtaining an endorsement can restore some amount of coverage for mold to a primary property policy. Another approach might be to obtain a separate mold insurance policy. Make sure the limit of any policy will cover a substantial amount of the expense associated with remediating mold, which can range up to thousands of dollars.
Fungus growth occurs when mold spores settle down on surfaces where access to sufficient moisture and nutrients is available. Homeowners may be able to reduce the risk of mold growth by arranging for timely mitigation and cleanup within 24 to 48 hours of water damage at a household in Bastrop, TX.
Common Questions About Mold
Commercial mold remediation in Northwest Hills, TX
Ways To Protect Your Commercial Property From Mold
Frequent inspection and upkeep in your building in Northwest Hills, TX, are the keys to keeping it structurally sound and maintaining good air quality. Hidden leaks and excess moisture, however, can quickly lead to mold growth. Knowing the answers to common questions about mold can help you protect your commercial property.
What Causes Mold Problems?
Just like other living organisms, mold needs food and drink to thrive. The main culprit in fungal growth in a commercial building is usually some type of unmitigated water damage:
- Busted pipe
- Supply line leak
- Overflowing toilet
- Clogged sewer line
- Storm flooding
Any surface exposed to excess moisture has the potential for mold to grow. Keeping watch for damp areas or damage is essential for stopping fungus in its tracks.
How Do You Know You Have a Mold Problem?
The first sign that there may be mold growth in your building is the telltale musty odor in your building. You may be able to see the mold on your walls, floor or ceiling. If you smell mold but can't find it, a professional inspection is necessary to locate the issue.
How Do You Get Rid of a Mold Problem?
If there is just a small patch of mold on a nonporous surface, washing it thoroughly with a strong detergent is likely to get rid of it. For large problems, however, you need to call mold remediation specialists for a thorough cleaning.
What Can You Do To Prevent a Mold Problem From Returning?
Controlling moisture is your best bet to keep mold from coming back. Even if you don't have water damage, high humidity can also cause mold to collect on surfaces and grow. Improve the ventilation throughout the building to encourage proper air flow, and invest in a dehumidifier if necessary.
Even with frequent inspection, you still could find the occasional patch of mold growth in your building. Quick, professional remediation is the best way to solve the problem and keep it from returning
What To Know About Mold and Your Business
If you believe you have found mold, it's best to contact a professional.
Understanding Mold and Your Business
One of the things that may cause issues for any Allandale, 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 fungus 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.
3 Tips You Need To Strengthen Your Buildings
You can invest in shutters to protect your buildings.
Protect Your Buildings from Mother Nature
Storm damage can take a serious toll on a building, no matter the size or style of the structure. This can be true despite how well-built it is. By taking some time to learn how best to protect your buildings from mother nature, you can help keep your facility safe no matter the weather. If you experience storm damage, you should work with storm mitigation specialists to get your building back in shape.
1. Assess Weak Spots
One of the main things to know about facility management in Bastrop, TX, is that assessing weak spots in your buildings is important to properly protect them. Additionally, being familiar with weather conditions in your region, as well as the geography of your specific location, can help you discern what you need to guard your building against the most severe storms.
2. Fortify Key Areas Against Storm Damage
After you have assessed the weak spots, you then need to take steps to fortify key areas. Your windows are often more susceptible to damage than any other part of your building. There are special screens and shutters you can invest in if you take building protection seriously.
3. Perform Regular Maintenance
It is not enough to simply fortify a few areas once. If you truly want to make sure that you are doing your best to safeguard your building against storm damage in Bastrop, TX, you need to perform regular maintenance on both the interior and exterior structure. You should also be consistently checking the key areas for wear. Doing these things can help prevent small issues from turning into large ones, and it decreases the likelihood that you will be caught off guard in the event of a major storm.
Storms can do a lot of damage to a building and result in costly repairs. The good news is that there are steps you can take to protect your facility from harm.
Is Mold Damage Covered By Rental Insurance?
Mold growth in a home in Cedar Creek, TX.
Rental insurance policies may include automatic endorsements for mold damage or exclude this type of damage. These policies generally cover damage to a tenant's personal property. When it comes to a rented property, tenants are only liable for mold resulting from a leak that they have caused. Here are a few considerations for renters pursuing mold removal.
The Cause of the Damage
Renters insurance should cover damage caused by a leak that is beyond the tenant's control. A policyholder may need to provide proof of several conditions:
- The presence of water damage
- No personal liability for damage
- Proof of mitigation
A tenant should notify a property owner of the presence of a leak in a timely manner and try to prevent mold growth. Rental policies should also cover contents exposed to water damage, which is likely to be a precursor to mold.
The Terms of a Policy
Tenants should carefully review the terms of a rental insurance policy. Some policies feature automatic endorsements for several problems resulting from water damage:
If these conditions are carved out of a policy, the cost of mold removal will not be covered. Remediating damaged contents out-of-pocket may still be less expensive than replacement.
Ways To Mitigate Damage
Tenants' responsibilities for rental properties are limited. As long as a tenant does not cause a leak or another source of water damage that results in mold, his or her primary duty is to notify a landlord about a problem before mold becomes an issue.
Rental insurance may or may not cover the cost of restoring damage caused by mold at a residence in Cedar Creek, TX. Coverage for water damage is more likely. Report primary damage to a property owner or manager and take measures to prevent mold growth. If a policy provides any coverage, these measures may make it easier to file a claim.
The Impact of Hail on Your Roof
Prepare for a hail storm in North Loop, TX.
The Influence of Hail on Your Roof
Hazardous weather can bring about concerns for your business in North Loop, TX, that you may not have even thought about before. Being caught unprepared when a hail storm strikes can leave you at a disadvantage. It could possibly even result in having to close while you make repairs. To avoid serious issues, it is a good idea to make sure you are ready to prevent or handle any hail damage that could occur.
Hail and Your Roof
The place most likely to see severe destruction from hail is your roof. Roof damage from hail may include these:
Any damage could be just aesthetic or it could compromise your roof's function. Aesthetic issues are something you can fix whenever you can get to it, but functional problems should be handled right away.
Possible Issues Due to Roof Damage
If you fail to fix damage such as tears, holes and cracks, it can lead to more severe issues with an impact that goes beyond just your roof. Such concerns can lead to water leakage inside or water damage to the structural elements of the roof. It is essential after a hail storm to check out your roof and look for possible problems. If you see anything alarming, you should contact a professional to start repairs immediately.
Luckily, you do not have to wait for damage to occur. You can apply a hail-resistant coating to your roof that can help to minimize possible problems. You may also consider hail guards or wire mesh, which both can also offer protection.
Being ready for a hail storm in North Loop, TX, will not only enable you to better take care of your business but also allows you to minimize the roof damage that could occur. Preparing for hail can be one of the best investments you make in your business.
3 Key Parts of a Fire Escape Plan
Create a fire escape plan for your office.
Three Important Elements of a Fire Escape Plan
In Allandale, TX, it is important to focus your emergency plan around when to evacuate and where to go to protect employees and the premises. Knowing how to react ahead of time with a fire escape plan will efficiently safeguard the security of your employees and any visitors in the office.
1. Know When To Evacuate
Contact officials when a fire or other emergency occurs to determine whether an evacuation is necessary if you are ever in doubt of how to respond. If there is excessive smoke or a visible flame, this is a sign to vacate the immediate area, alert the office to evacuate and call 911. Be sure to assign leaders to facilitate evacuation efforts safely.
2. Know Where To Evacuate
All employees should be trained in the emergency escape plan in case of a fire to ensure every person knows how to react and to prevent panic. Discussing these plans within each team or department and having fire escape plan diagrams visible at intervals throughout the building will reinforce what people already know if there is ever an emergency. Also, emphasizing at least two possible escape routes for each department can prevent confusion if one avenue is no longer safe to take.
3. Know What You Should Do After an Evacuation
Directing people to a safe location once they leave the building is also vital. Have designated staff aid in leading the evacuation out of the building and to a safe distance away from the emergency situation. If you notify your employees during training of what to expect upon leaving the building as well as lead them to a safe place at the moment of evacuation, you can help secure your team.
Give you and your employees peace of mind and create a fire escape plan for your office. If there ever is a fire emergency, be sure to contact professionals to contain the incident as well as to properly clean and renovate the space to prevent lasting damage.
Tips for Preventing Bathroom Mold
Mold damage in Tarrytown, TX.
Bathrooms are breeding grounds for mold. Even without significant water damage from floods or natural disasters, the pipes and fixtures can often leak – or just splashing and overflows can create standing water issues that lead to mold growth. For tips on mold prevention in your Tarrytown, TX, home’s bathroom, let’s take a look at how to first keep your bathroom in proper working order.
Watch for Water Damage
Many people don’t think about the fact that water damage can still happen in a room where people constantly shower, wash their hands, and flush high volumes of water down the toilet. Yet damage from water can happen quite easily, and next thing you know there’s black mold creeping up your walls and surrounding the fixtures. To prevent mold growth, make sure you follow these tips:
• Dry up any bathtub or toilet overflows immediately. These overflows can seep underneath bathroom tile and cause it to buckle, creating pockets of standing water where mold can breed. Even if you have hardwood floors, water can cause the floors to warp and soften, allowing mold to grow in the cracks.
• Inspect any drips. Pervasive drips from faucets and shower heads or around the base of toilets can mean a problem with the sealant or with the pipes. Professional inspection is a must to ensure everything stays water-tight, or you may end up with a mold problem.
• Turn on the fans when you shower. Fans are designed to suck steam out of the bathroom so that the moisture can’t condense on the walls. When dampness condenses, it can not only ruin the paint but encourage mold growth.
• Watch for dark patches. Dark patches on the walls, particularly behind the sinks and toilets, can indicate leaking pipes and a ripe opportunity for mold to take root and grow. If these dark patches have black splotches in them, you may already have a mold or mildew problem.
Know the Mold Growth You’re Dealing With
Identifying the mold that is forming in your home can help you have an informed conversation with your remediation specialist.
It’s well-established that homeowners should immediately remediate mold when it appears. What’s not as well known is that there are different types of mold growth of varying severity. In Austin, TX, there are excellent remediation specialists who can assess your situation and clean up the problem.
Different Types of Mold
Mold usually forms where there is moisture and an amenable surface to grow on. Identifying a particular type of mold usually comes down to the color, texture, and where the mold is forming. The following are mold types you might see in your home:
• Acremonium has a powdery or moist texture, forms in systems producing condensation.
• Aureobasidium forms on wallpaper and wood is pink, brown, or black.
• Chaetomium appears in homes damaged by water.
• Cladosporium forms on fabrics, upholstery, and carpet and has a suede texture.
• Fusarium appears after flooding or leaks on carpeting, wallpaper, and food and is pink, white, or red.
• Stachybotrys is highly toxic, forms on wood or paper surfaces, and has a slimy texture.
• Trichoderma forms on fabrics and in HVAC systems have a wooly texture.
• Ulocladium forms in kitchens, bathrooms, or windows and is black in color.
There are many types of mold that can grow in your home. The trick is knowing which are harmful.
Where Does Mold Come From?
Mold spores enter your home through air ducts and other openings. In the presence of high humidity, moisture, or water damage, however, they can proliferate and you may notice a growth. At this point, it can be helpful to know how serious the mold you’re dealing with is, and a professional remediation team can assist you by examining the growth and providing solutions to deal with it.
Identifying the mold that is forming in your home can help you have an informed conversation with your remediation specialist. This in turn can ensure the mold growth is cleaned up before it becomes a problem.
4 Ways To Prevent Mold Growth in Your Bathroom
Mold problem in an Austin, TX home.
How To Keep Your Washroom Free Of Mold
Mold is particularly common following water damage. It is thus no surprise that mold often appears in wet areas of the home, such as the bathroom. The toilet, shower, bathtub and sink make it nearly impossible to remove all moisture from that room.
Luckily, there are ways to limit water buildup in the bathroom and thus slow down or stop mold growth. Here are five tips for keeping your washroom free of mold.
1. Grab a Squeegee
The squeegee is one of the best mold prevention tools. While you may not have time to scrub your shower and tub each morning, you should have a few minutes to apply the squeegee after your daily wash. This alone should lower the moisture level by 75 percent.
2. Fix Leaks Immediately
A leak in your bathroom ceiling can cause water damage that attracts mold. You should thus eliminate the leak and remove any standing water immediately.
3. Invest in a Fan and Use It Correctly
A fan's vent should suck the moisture out of the air before it causes mold to grow. However, you must make sure your fan is strong enough for your bathroom. If you have an 8-foot ceiling, multiply the square footage of the room by 1.1 to determine the ideal cubic feet per minute count for your fan. For 9-foot ceilings, replace 1.1 with 1.5.
Do not just run the fan right after your bath or shower, either. Leave on the fan for at least 30 minutes after your wash. This should stop moisture from harming the ceiling and walls.
4. Wash Your Towels and Rugs
Bathroom towels, mats and rugs are also common locations for mold. Washing those items at least once per week should remove the spores.
The above tips can help you limit the water damage in your bathroom. This, in turn, should prevent mold growth in that room. If you do suspect that your house has a mold problem, emergency cleanup professionals in Austin, TX, can assist with the remediation.
How to Tell When the Water From a Leak is Unsanitary
There are three categories of water that can flood commercial properties in Leander, TX.
There are three categories of water that can flood commercial properties in Leander, TX, ranging according to their severity. Blackwater is the most unsanitary and requires professional attention. Unsanitary water can make its way into a building due to:
- Floods from inclement weather
- Full septic tanks
- Overflowing toilets
Here are some things to know about the water that can leak into your property.
Unsanitary water ranges in severity and can be identified according to its source. Water that makes its way into a building from water supply lines is considered category 1 as long as it does not have debris. If the water is drinkable, it is clean water. Category 2 water has been gently used and is unsanitary. This is the type of water that comes from sinks, laundry rooms, and showers. Category 3 water is the worst of the three and is highly toxic.
Sources of Category 3 Water
Category 3 water, or black water, is contaminated with debris, fecal matter, and other harmful toxins. It is sourced from sewers and can cause extreme damage to a building. Before cleaning contaminated water, you should take care to protect yourself by wearing appropriate gear. If the job is too much for one person to clean, contact a professional water damage restoration service to help with sewage cleanup and restoring your property.
Steps to Take in Case of a Flood
If you have encountered a flood in your building, take immediate action to prevent severe water damages. Firstly, identify the source of the leak. Knowing the source will help you identify the category of water that is entering your property. Then, shut off the main water supply line to stop the water from leaking into the building. Once the water is shut off and the leak has stopped, take the proper steps to clean your property. Call a professional cleaning service to avoid the hassle of cleaning it yourself.
SERVPRO cleanup and restoration services will help you in case of black water damage. If you have encountered a severe flood in your building, take steps immediately to prevent worse damages from developing.
Keep or Discard? Items That Can and Cannot be Saved from Mold Damage
Moldy food must be thrown away
Mold and floodwater can inflict devastating amounts of damage on your home in Northwest Hills, TX. Picking through the wreckage can be heartbreaking, especially when sentimental items have been affected. While all hope might seem lost, there are certain mold cleaning techniques you can use to save your possessions.
Items to Throw Away
It's important to know which items simply cannot be saved when attempting to expedite your mold cleaning efforts:
Porous Objects: Because of their tendency to absorb water quickly, it's unlikely that you'll be able to save objects with porous surfaces. This includes items made of cardboard, padding, stuffed animals, upholstered furniture, carpeting and mattresses.
Paper Products: While it is possible to restore these items, the process is rather costly and should be saved for sentimental items. Place any possessions you wish to preserve in the freezer to prevent mold damage from spreading.
Food Items: Moldy or water damaged food must be thrown away. The same goes for any water damaged food preparation appliances.
Items to Keep
Likewise, there are many types of objects that you can easily disinfect and keep:
Glass, Metal or Plastic Materials: Clean these items using either antibacterial hand soap or a homemade mixture comprised of 1 gallon of water and 1/2 cup of bleach.
Most Clothing Items: Time is of the essence with clothing, so make sure to wash them using regular laundry detergent as soon as possible. Leather clothing needs to be taken to a cleaning professional.
Electronic Devices: Appliances exposed to mold damage vary on a case-by-case basis. Any water damaged electronics or appliances are potentially dangerous and need to be thrown away. You should consult a professional if you wish to restore these types of items.
Knowing which items to keep and which you need to get rid of can certainly help expedite your mold cleaning efforts. If you have any further questions, or require additional help getting rid of mold, contact mold remediation experts as soon as possible.
6 Signs Your Commercial Building May Have Mold
Mold damage on a wall in Allandale, TX
Signs Of Potential Mold Growth
If you suspect a mold problem in your facility, then you may want to call an indoor environmental specialist in Allandale, TX, to perform a mold test of the building. However, if you are not sure of a problem, then consider the following six signs of potential mold growth.
1. Peeling or Bubbling Paint
Walk through your building, inspecting the walls and ceilings. You are looking for signs of peeling or bubbling paint. You may also want to examine the space for signs of sponginess in the drywall. These potential clues point to water damage and possible mold.
2. Plumbing Problems
Do you know of any existing plumbing issues in the facility? How long have these issues been going on? Mold needs water to thrive, which means plumbing leaks often lead to fungal problems.
3. Recent Flood
Any indoor environmental specialist will explain that mold can develop within the first 24 to 48 hours of water damage. Therefore, if you have experienced a recent flood in your facility, and the water either wasn’t removed quickly or the area was not dried thoroughly, then mold is a possibility.
4. Staining and Discoloration
Staining and discoloration of ceiling tiles, drywall, carpeting or grout can all mean water damage or mold growth. If you notice new or rapid discoloration of building materials, then have them tested for possible mold exposure.
Is your facility temperature controlled? If not, do you have proper ventilation installed to avoid excessive humidity? The building should remain at or below 50% humidity levels to reduce the risk of mold development. If you have no measures protecting against excessive moisture levels, consider installing vents, fans and dehumidifiers.
When mold is not visible, you can often smell it, especially when it reaches the HVAC system. It is a musty and unpleasant smell.
If you have experienced any of the above issues, consider contacting an indoor environmental specialist. These professionals will test your facility for mold and assess the best way to remove the problem.
How To Prevent Mold in Bathrooms
Protect your shower by fixing damaged grout
How To Prevent Mold From Forming
If not addressed promptly, water damage can lead to a variety of long term issues. The most important thing you can do after experiencing unwanted moisture is to thoroughly clean and dry the area. When water is left to sit, mold can take hold of porous surfaces and begin to form in as little as twenty-four to forty-eight hours. Luckily, there are several actions you can take to help prevent mold from forming in the first place.
1. Provide Adequate Ventilation
A bath fan, usually installed in the ceiling, will suck moisture out of the room. To ensure the air is dry enough that mold growth should not occur, run the fan while you are in the shower and for half an hour afterward. If the air in your bathroom still feels moist after half an hour, you may need to install a stronger fan that is more appropriate for your bathroom's square footage.
2. Squeegee the Shower Walls
Water can remain on shower walls for hours after the shower is over. Mold can easily begin growing on grout and in cracks and crevices. By squeegeeing the shower walls after your shower, you can remove around three-fourths of the moisture that would cause water damage.
3. Seal the Grout
Over time, grout can begin to wear down. Protect your shower by fixing damaged grout and then applying a waterproof grout sealer once a year.
4. Remove Mold
These mold prevention techniques should keep mold out of your bathroom. However, you could still find some mold growth despite your best efforts. If you discover mold, remove it as soon as you find it by mixing one part bleach with nine parts water.
If you have areas that have sustained water damage in Hyde Park, TX, you may need the help of an expert. Luckily, there are professional mold remediation companies that will have your home looking "Like it never even happened."
Think Twice Before Tackling an 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.
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.
3 Things to Know About Mold
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.
Can a Moldy Painting Be Saved?
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:
- Family heirlooms
- 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
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.
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
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.
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
- Retail Spaces
- Water Fountains
- Sales Counters
- Carpets and Rugs
- Stair Handrails
- Elevator Cars
- Playground Equipment
- Fitness Equipment
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
Insurance Agents and the SERVPRO Claims Inventory System
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.
What To Know About Fire Sprinklers and How They Work
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.
3 Things Homeowners Should Know About Rain and Mold Growth
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.
Where Mold Grows in Your Home
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:
- Wood and paper products
- Ceiling tiles
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.
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.
Insurance Agents Can Benefit by Using a Claims Inventory System
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
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
Step By Step: Combining Mitigation and Restoration
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.
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.
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.
How To Test for Mold
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
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.
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.
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.
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
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
- 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
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
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.