When a pipe bursts in your home.
A burst pipe can cause serious water damage.
2018 has brought us mostly subfreezing temperatures. When it gets this cold outside homes are at risk of burst pipes and all of the headaches and water damage they bring. Water pipes burst when the water inside them freezes and expands causing an increase in pressure inside the pipe. When the pressure gets too high for the pipe to contain it bursts causing damage to your home.
A burst pipe can happen almost anywhere, but usually occurs with pipes that are close to the exterior of your home. The most critical aspect of dealing with a burst pipe is turning off the water supply and stopping the flow of water. Water in a crawlspace or basement is usually well contained and can be easily dried out. However, when a pipe bursts in the main part of your home, such as a toilet feed or an under-sink supply line, it can create a much bigger mess depending upon how much water has inundated the house.
As with any water damage, time is of the essence as mold can start to develop in as little as 24 hours after flooding occurs. The more time that passes without treatment the more likely those materials will continue to deteriorate and may not be salvageable. This is doubly true in homes with carpeting.
When a pipe in your home bursts—affecting multiple rooms—travels from an upper level to a lower level of the home, or has been left unnoticed for more than 8 hours, professional water mitigation and specialized drying equipment is essential for preventing long-term damage. If you see that water has seeped into the subflooring or the drywall the safest step would be to contact a professional water damage remediation company like SERVPRO of Medford to help remove or restore items that would otherwise be destroyed by mold.
Prevent Smoke Damage From Your Fireplace
Prevent Smoke Damage From Your Fireplace
The weather outside is frightful and there is nothing better than curling up on a cold night to the warm glow of a fireplace. Unfortunately, fireplaces can also pose a smoke and fire hazard to your home. There is, however, nothing particularly soothing about unwanted fireplace smoke puffs that spill into the home while the fire is burning. Fires can also start when hot embers from the fire catch on residue from unclean chimneys.
If you are someone who likes to use their fireplace during the winter here are a few tips to prevent smoke or fire damage to your home.
Nobody likes a drafty house, but a house that is relatively airtight may not be able to supply enough outside air to the fire, resulting in a negative pressure in the home. Well-insulated homes can benefit from an outside air supply vent installed in the fireplace to satisfy the fire's needs.
Exhaust fans—like in kitchens or in forced air heating systems—can cause negative pressure, which will drag the smoke from your fireplace into your home. Turn off exhaust fans before settling down by the fire.
Only use your fireplace when it is cold out. The difference between the indoor and outdoor air helps the smoke draft properly. If it is too warm the smoke will have nowhere to go.
Make sure that the damper is open all the way. Sometimes there is a rain cap or even another damper on top of the chimney, which may be obstructed and needs attention. This can also be a fire hazard, so be careful.
Wet firewood can create heavy smoke. Make sure you only use seasoned firewood that is dry in your fireplace.
If you experience smoke or fire damage from your fireplace this winter contact the experts at SERVPRO of Medford. Their smoke damage experts can clean your furniture, curtains, walls, and floors to get rid of not only the black soot, but the foul odor it leaves behind.
Responding to Hurricane Harvey
Hurricane Harvey Slams Texas
SERVPRO is known to respond faster to any disaster; after the devastation of Hurricane Harvey hit Texas, we lived up to that claim. Hurricane Harvey was a Category 4 storm that hit Texas on August 25, 2017. It caused $180 billion in damage. That’s more than any other natural disaster in U.S history, except the largest estimates of Hurricane Katrina damage.
At its peak on September 1, 2017, one-third of Houston was underwater. Two feet of rain fell in the first 24 hours. The storm claimed the lives of 82 people and damaged 203,000 homes, of which 12,700 were destroyed.
Harvey was just winding down when our team landed in San Antonio, TX, after that it was a harrowing journey navigating across flooded river crossings and damaged bridges to get to Houston. Within the first three days we surveyed thirty properties for water and storm damage and started getting them on the path to recovery.
We were able to coordinate efforts mobilizing the resources we needed to help dry out and rebuild these properties, shipping in tractor-trailers full of equipment, our crew of one hundred ready to work.
Common Places to Find Mold
Mold can grow in many places.
When we think of mold problems we equate it to damp basements and black gross mold growing on drywall; but mold is insidious and can grow in places where you least expect it. Mold is fast growing, can pop up within 24 hours of being exposed to moisture, and spreads quickly.
Here are some common places where mold forms that you might not be aware of:
The spaces behind and under your fridge rarely see the light of day, which make them a perfect breeding ground for mold. Clean all water lines and drip pans and ensure they are not leaking; even a small leak can lead to a huge mold problem. Take the extra time to check and clean behind and underneath your refrigerator.
Your chimney can easily become a breeding ground for mold. Brick crevices collect water, dirt, and other organic debris. Rusted chimney caps and faulty flashing let in rain and snow, encouraging mold to grow. Replace rusted caps and fix flashing. Call a licensed mold removal specialist to remove the mold in your chimneys. To prevent mold, get your chimney cleaned by a professional chimney sweep at least once a year.
- Front-Loading Washing Machines
Front-loading washing machines are great, but can be a hotspot for mold growth. The gasket around the door on front-loading washing machines often stays wet because the door is usually closed when not in use. Add some lint to the moisture and mold happily munches and multiplies. Wipe the gasket and glass dry before you shut the door. If you spot mold, run a hot water wash with some chlorine bleach (no clothes), which will kill the fungi. Even if you have a top-load washer make sure to regularly check behind and underneath your washer and dryer to make sure there are no leaks or source of moisture. Clean out vents and lint traps to prevent mold havens, as well as fire hazards.
Condensation from windows provides the moisture mold loves, and the dirt and dust that collect provide the perfect place for the mold to settle. After heavy rains open windows and wipe moisture from the bottoms of sashes and windowsills. Replace any broken seals and if you notice any water has leaked into the wood and walls call a professional to see if the problem has caused mold.
Air conditioning units trap dust and pollen (a good meal for mold) and grab moisture from the air. If you don’t run your AC unit at least every 24 hours in warm weather humidity in your house climbs, giving mold the opportunity to grow in AC ducts, drain pans, and on coils. Drip pans and drainage hoses on window units can leak causing mold to grow into the windowsill and dry wall. If mold grows in your central air conditioning unit you’ll have to hire a mold remediation pro to clean out the system.
If you suspect you may have mold contact the experts at SERVPRO of Medford.
Rebuilding after a disaster.
After a disaster—whether it be a fire, water, or storm—damages your home you will need to rebuild and restore. For decades SERVPRO has been known for their ability to respond to a disaster and fix your home to “make it like it never happened”.
The first thing you must do after a disaster is take temporary protective measures such as placing roof tarps to prevent additional damage, and boarding up to secure the building and remove water and debris. Mold, smoke, fire, and water damage all have their own protocol for restoration and our experts know how to tackle each problem.
Once your home or building is secured and the hazards are removed you can start the rebuilding process; from the structure itself to preserving and restoring the treasured items inside your home—including heirlooms, art, and family photos. The professionals at SERVPRO of Medford can simplify the restoration process by handling both the initial damage mitigation and rebuilding the affected areas. Having one qualified company for the entire process can save time and keeps costs low.
SERVPRO of Medford can provide this continuity by supervising a full range of restoration services that will bring a building back to full functionality.
- Board Up
- Carpet Repair and Installation
- Document Drying
- Dry Cleaning
- Drywall Installation
- Drywall Removal
- Electronics Restoration
- Fine Art Restoration
- Furniture Restoration
- General Contracting
- Hardwood Floor Repair
- HVAC Services
- Move Out
- Roofing Services
- Tree Removal
- And more!
If you are in need of construction services contact SERVPRO of Medford at (631) 732-4952.
Document Restoration at SERVPRO of Medford
Aside from people, some of the hardest things to replace after a natural disaster are documents. After a flood or fire photographs and books could be lost forever. As a leader in the restoration industry, SERVPRO of Medford knows that timely mitigation is the key to recovering damaged possessions. Our experience and state-of-the-art technology can help save your important documents from the trash.
We employ the latest technology available, utilizing the same freeze-drying methods used by the Library of Congress to dry valuable historic documents and books; this method can clean and dry your documents without sacrificing their integrity or damaging them. As powerful as our document restoration technology is, it is delicate enough to handle old and fragile documents, books, and papers. With water damage like sewage or floodwater, documents will be exposed to bacteria, viruses, pesticides, or other harmful chemicals. Our team uses a gamma irradiation process to safely and effectively sterilize your documents.
Our facility is managed by HIPPA Master-certified technicians, under 24/7 surveillance so you know that your personal information is kept secure and confidential.
To prevent your documents from becoming damaged again, we also offer digitalization for your documents and photos. We use a computerized inventory system for digitizing your documents. In the digital age converting your paper files and photos to digital formats can have an invaluable impact on your business or home. You can have access to your records while saving space.
Types of Documents We Restore/Preserve
- paper documents
- books and magazines
- manuscripts and files
- photographs, films, negatives, and microfiche
- blueprints and maps
If you are in need of document restoration services contact SERVPRO of Medford at (631) 732-4952.
Types of Smoke Damage
Smoke and soot is very invasive and can penetrate various cavities within your home, causing hidden damage and odor. Our smoke damage expertise and experience allows us to inspect and accurately assess the extent of the damage to develop a comprehensive plan of action.
Smoke and soot facts:
- Hot smoke migrates to cooler areas and upper levels of a structure.
- Smoke flows around plumbing systems, seeping through the holes used by pipes to go from floor to floor.
- The type of smoke may greatly affect the restoration process.
Different Types of Smoke
There are two different types of smoke–wet and dry. As a result, there are different types of soot residue after a fire. Before restoration begins, SERVPRO of East Windsor will test the soot to determine which type of smoke damage occurred. The cleaning procedures will then be based on the information identified during pretesting. Here is some additional information:
Wet Smoke – Plastic and Rubber
Low heat, smoldering, pungent odor, sticky, smeary. Smoke webs are more difficult to clean.
Dry Smoke – Paper and Wood
Fast burning, high temperatures, heat rises therefore smoke rises.
Protein Fire Residue – Produced by evaporation of material rather than from a fire
Virtually invisible, discolors paints and varnishes, extreme pungent odor.
Our Fire Damage Restoration Services
Since each smoke and fire damage situation is a little different, each one requires a unique solution tailored for the specific conditions. We have the equipment, expertise, and experience to restore your fire and smoke damage. We will also treat your family with empathy and respect and your property with care.
Mold is requires mold remediation right away.
Mold can not only destroy the quality of life in your home, it can destroy the value of your home as well.
Mold grows in dark, damp, areas of your home—like behind walls and under floors—and by the time you finally see visual signs of mold it is already a much bigger problem.
The most common mold that causes the most problems for homeowners is black mold. Black mold tends to have a strong, musty smell, and of course displays a trademark black color. It can cause health problems, and decrease the value of your home. It is imperative that you contact a mold remediation specialist at the first sign of a mold problem.
If you believe you have black mold growth in an area of your home after these initial inspections, you should contact a professional mold remediation company like SERVPRO of Medford
Call SERVPRO of Medford at (631) 732-4952
Puff Back occurs when your ignition fails to light properly, oil fumes accumulate in the chamber of your furnace. When the pilot light ignites again it causes a small explosion shooting the dust and soot in your ducts or baseboard all over the room. Drapes, blinds, furniture, bedding, clothing, floors, carpets, dishes, appliances, you name it, the soot will manage to find its way in causing major headaches for homeowners.
Soot not only gets anywhere it is so very difficult to clean. It can’t be wiped off with a regular sponge, towel, paper towel, etc. in fact that just makes the problem worse! The cleaning of soot requires special sponges and cleaning products that are used by professionals. Almost worse than the mess is the smell that seems to permeate into everything. This odor is difficult to remove and requires the services of a professional to remove as well. A professional certified home restoration company such as SERVPRO of Medford is experienced with handling puff back situations. A puff back can occur in large proportion such as the situation just mentioned or in small proportion, over a period of time. If you notice black soot accumulating on carpet around heating vents or baseboard, or on surfaces inside your home, chances are you are experiencing a small scale puff back.
Hiring a professional like SERVPRO of Medford right after a puff back can save you time and money.
Call SERVPRO of Medford at (631) 732-4952
What to Do After a Fire
There is nothing quite as devastating as a house fire and once the smoke clears and the fire trucks drive away the real work rebuilding begins. It may be a daunting task, especially when there is such a mess left behind, but it is possible to rebuild.
The first thing you should do after a fire is contact your insurance company within the first 24 hours. Your insurance company will advise you on how to handle the aftermath of your fire and possibly be able to recommend a professional fire restoration company, such as SERVPRO of Medford. A fire restoration company provides services to prevent further damage, help determine which items can or cannot be refurbished and which structural items do and do not need to be repaired or replaced. They provide estimates to insurance companies for the cost of damages and will help walk you through the process of thoroughly deodorizing, cleaning and repairing your home.
Things to remember after a fire:
- Don’t use any electrical appliance that was in or around the fire.
- If the ceiling or floor above is wet do not use any ceiling lights or fans.
- Prevent soot from getting everywhere by not touching anything.
- Do not wash drapes or other materials that may require dry cleaning.
Hiring a professional like SERVPRO of Medford right after a fire can save you time and money.
Call SERVPRO of Medford at (631) 732-4952