Recent Water Damage Posts
How You Can Prevent Water Damage
Water damage in your home may be more common that you would expect. You may only think of flooding or other catastrophic storm situations when you think of water damage, but little everyday mishaps can cause big trouble. It is impossible to be fully prepared for every scenario, but there are some small steps that you can take to prevent the stress that comes along with a water damage. First, know the most common culprits. Small water lines to appliances such as ice maker lines are at the top of the list. Often, your refrigerator is against a wall so you may not even realize there is a leak until the water has seeped through walls or flooring. Make sure to check lines to ice makers, washing machines and dishwashers regularly. These lines do have a life expectancy and may need to be changed out over the life of the appliance. As with appliances, leaky plumbing or HVAC pipes are also a leading cause of water damage in residential structures. Make sure to check these regularly yourself or by a professional, especially if you live in an older home. Also, be sure to shut off water when you leave for an extended period of time. A small water damage that occurs can quickly become a major disaster if it is left sitting in a vacant home. If you do experience a water damage in your home, you can rest assured that SERVPRO of Mobile Northwest is available 24/7 to help!
IICRC Certification - Why It Matters
At SERVPRO of Mobile Northwest, we talk a lot about IICRC Certification and how we follow all IICRC guidelines when it comes to the mitigation process. If you aren’t an industry insider, you may be wondering exactly what the IICRC is and why that certification matters? IICRC stands for the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration. Originally called the International Institute of Carpet and Upholstery Cleaning, this non-profit organization was founded in 1972 and has been setting the standards for the restoration industry ever since. The IICRC has now grown to be a global organization with more than 53,000 certified technicians and 6,000 Certified Firms around the world. As an IICRC Certified Firm, you can rest assured that our technicians receive their certification and that we adhere strictly to all guidelines as set for the by the IICRC. What does this mean? Our technicians must undergo rigorous coursework focused on standards and practices that are based on proven knowledge. Once completing the course, they must then pass an exam to prove that they have understood and retained the practices set forth for them. For you this means you can rest easy knowing that your home or business is in the hands of skilled mitigation experts who have met some of the most stringent standards in the industry. Taking care of our customers is our number one priority and we take every step necessary to ensure that you receive the highest level of service possible from everyone on our team!
Its Dry...Now What?
When water damage occurs, most people are focused on getting the water up as quickly as possible, but what happens after its gone? Depending on the severity of your water loss situation, you may be lift with exposed beams, rafters or other structural elements due to drywall being torn out. You may have exposed concrete due to floors being taken up. A water damage isn’t necessarily done when the mitigation is complete. Often there is reconstruction to be done to get the home back to its preloss state. Who you call to complete that work is up to you, but at SERVPRO of Mobile Northwest we are always Here to help. We wanted to make the process as seamless as possible for our customers, so we have added construction to our menu of services. From mitigation through “put-back” we can handle it all, eliminating the hassle of dealing with multiple vendors. We can now truly make it “Like it never even happened." For more information on our construction services contact our office at 251-633-7500.
Cleaning Water Damaged Textiles
When water damage strikes, it is often not just the structure that is affected, but the contents as well. Depending on the degree of contaminants in the water, this isn’t a job for your usual laundromat. You need the experts in clean to ensure your textiles are returned to their preloss condition. At SERVPRO of Mobile Northwest, we utilize the cutting-edge technology of the Esporta washing system to ensure your textiles are free of contaminants. The Esporta uses a patent four quadrant system and unique blend of cleaning solutions to remove up to 99.9999% of contaminants, restoring textiles to food grade quality. This allows us to clean items that would have previously been deemed unsalvageable. We can even clean items damaged flood waters or sewage. The unique quadrant system allows us to clean a wide variety of contents including leather goods, purses, shoes and even fragile items such as porcelain dolls. Once cleaned items are carefully dried, pressed folded and packed up to await transport back to your home.
What To Do?
You come home and find your carpeting a squishy, wet mess. What should you do? If there is standing water, you should turn off the electricity first to reduce the risk of receiving a shock. Next, you will need to locate the source of the water. You may need to call a plumber or HVAC technician to help determine and repair the source of the water damage. Once the water has been stopped, you will need to contact SERVPRO of Mobile Northwest. We guarantee that we will arrive on-site within and hour to assess your water damage and crews will begin work within 3 hours. When it comes to water damage, time is of the essence and can save time and money. The faster we arrive on-site also increases the chances of salvaging contents. We recommend moving electronics, important paperwork and pictures and keepsakes out of the affected areas as quickly as possible. You can also slide plastic or foam blocks under the legs of wooden furniture to protect it until we arrive on site to begin the mitigation. If you experience water damage call us right away at 251-633-7500.
Water Damage vs. Flood Damage
You may think that water damage and flood damage are the same thing, but they are actually two completely different types of losses. Why they are different is quite simple. They involve two different categories of water. Based on IICRC standards, there are three categories of water that may be encountered on a water damage site. “Clean water” falls in to Category 1 and poses no health risks. An example would be a leak from an ice maker supply line. Category 2, or “Grey water” has significant contamination from mold, bacteria or chemicals. Flood water falls into Category 3 or “Black water”, which is water with significant levels of toxins, disease causing organisms and/or other agents making it grossly unsanitary. It is difficult for many to understand why flood waters would fall in to this category. It is just river water or rain water, why is it so unsanitary? When massive flooding occurs, significant amounts of water flow from one area to another. This water picks up all of the bacteria and toxins from everything it flows across, through or over. Sewage back-ups, dead animals, leaking chemicals…the list goes on. This is what separates flood damage from water damage. Due to the significant levels of contaminants the water and everything that it has touched must be treated to prevent the spread of possible disease-causing bacteria. At SERVPRO of Mobile Northwest, we know how to handle flood damage! As part of the national network that makes up the SERVPRO Disaster Response Team, we have traveled all over the country to help those affected by flooding. If you ever experience a flood loss, call the experts at SERVPRO of Mobile Northwest to help you get your life back on track faster!
Water Damage Statistics
Whether it is a small loss or a complete flood situation, water damage is always an unsettling experience. Nearly 93% of all losses could have been prevented and we want to help you protect your home or business from the unexpected. From leaking pipes to a natural disaster, the term “water damage” can cover a variety of situations. It is important that you check your homeowner’s policy and truly understand your coverage limits. If you think it will never happen to you, think again. According to statistics set forth by the American Insurance Association, nearly 40% of current homeowners have experienced some form of a water damage loss. It is the second most common reason for filing an insurance claim in the United States and causes billions in property damage each year. The most common cause of water damage is completely preventable! Broken pipes and hoses from ice maker lines, dishwashers and washing machines are the number one culprit. Did you know that nearly 250 gallons of water can escape from a 1/8-inch crack in a typical household pipe in a 24-hour period? You can visit your local home improvement store to replace old pipes with new materials for an easy fix. Nobody can ever predict the future, but knowledge is always your best line of defense! If you experience water damage, remember that SERVPRO of Mobile Northwest is available 24/7 to help…call us at 251-633-7500.
We Know Water
Did you know that Mobile was ranked as the wettest city in the United States? With an average of 67 inches of rainfall annually and 59 rainy days per year, Mobile took the top spot with Pensacola coming in a close second. It goes without saying that when you have this much water falling from the sky and you have an abundance of natural waterways, there is going to be some flooding. Luckily, SERVPRO of Mobile Northwest is always Here to Help® you with any water damage you may experience. From flooding weather events to burst pipes, no water loss is too big or small for us to handle. Our expertly trained crews have the experience, the techniques and the technology to make it “Like it never even happened.” We will arrive on-site quickly to begin the cleanup and walk you through every step of the process. We understand how stressful the situation can be for a homeowner and our goal is to make it as easy as possible for you. If you experience water damage in your home, give us a call at 251-633-7500.
SERVPRO has the Magic Touch
We have been told by many of our clients that the work we do is like “magic”. Everything is wet and then suddenly its all dry and restored to its preloss glory. Well folks, sorry to disappoint but the team members at SERVPRO of Mobile Northwest aren’t magicians and we don’t have a bright green magic wand. Our highly trained technicians are actually experts in the “science of drying”. Drying is a complicated process that requires a working knowledge of psychrometry in order to fully dry a structure. A psychrometer is a tool used to measure the humidity within the atmosphere. Water can damage structures through both direct contact and by being absorbed through water content in the air. It is critical that the moisture content of the air be monitored to ensure the effectiveness of the in place drying methods. At SERVPRO of Mobile Northwest, our team members have undergone rigorous training to become experts in the “science of drying”. They hold various IICRC certifications including:
Applied Structural Drying
Commercial Drying Specialist
Water Damage Restoration Technician
ICAT Inventory System
ICAT and SERVPRO of Mobile Northwest
iCAT Inventory System
When you experience a water loss in your home, the stress can be intensified when you have to move many of your belongings out to begin the recovery process. At SERVPRO of Mobile Northwest, our goal is to make this process as easy as possible for you. One way in which we do that is through our iCat inventory system. This electronic inventory tool allows us to catalog each item we pack up and note the location to ensure accurate tracking of your contents. Each item is photographed and receives a unique barcode as it is being packed by our crew. Once it is at our shop, the item is cleaned and receives a new label, allowing our team to place the item in the correct room upon its return to your home. During this entire process, you have the ability to view the contents through the web portal and request any items that you may need during the cleanup. Using this innovative inventory process gives our customers piece of mind by knowing where their contents are at all times. It is just one more way that SERVPRO of Mobile goes above and beyond to care for our customers.
Water Safety and SERVPRO of Mobile Northwest
We spend a lot of time helping our customers learn more about water damage and the ways they can protect their homes. But what about protecting yourself when it comes to water? With summer in full swing, many of you will be visiting beaches, lakes, rivers and pools trying to beat the heat. Whether you are swimming or enjoying water sports, it is very important for you to always be aware and take proper safety precautions to protect your family. At SERVPRO of Northwest Mobile, we want to remind you that although beautiful and fun, water can pose serious hazards if not respected properly.
When swimming in natural bodies of water, be cautious of currents and underwater hazards.
Never swim alone!
Make sure that children never swim without adult supervision.
Teach children how to exit the pool unassisted in case they were to ever fall in.
While boating or participating in other water sports, always wear a life jacket!
The Red Cross has loads of great tips on water safety. CLICK HERE to be taken to their website for more information.
What to do until help arrives?
SERVPRO of Mobile Northwest is ready 24/7
What to do until help arrives...
Although there is no foolproof way to prevent water damage there are some steps that you can take to minimize damage should it ever happen to you. First, call SERVPRO of Mobile Northwest as soon as you notice the damage. In the warm, humid climate here along the Gulf Coast, water damage can quickly become much worse and even lead to mold if not treated promptly. Also, by acting quickly you can often salvage items, such as wood floors, that would have to be removed it not attended to in a timely fashion. After calling SERVPRO of Mobile Northwest, there are a few steps that you can take until we arrive on-site.
Shut off water to the source of the leak, if possible, and call a qualified service to repair if necessary.
Turn off power to affected areas if necessary.
Use wood blocks or even aluminum foil underneath wooden furniture legs to protect them from the water.
Keep curtains and other hanging fabrics out of the water.
Pick up any loose belongings and electronics out of the standing water.
Remember, if you experience a water loss, we are here 24/7. We will be onsite at your residence or business within 1 hour to assess the damage and develop a plan to make it ..."Like it never even happened.®"
Magic of SERVPRO in Mobile, AL
Onsite with a client making it. "Like it never even happened".
Most consumers don’t understand the science of drying that is involved in water restoration. To many it is simply like magic. Their home is wet, the SERVPRO calvary comes to the rescue in their green vans and it is dry. Damage seems to magically disappear, but the truth is much more involved than industry outsiders may realize. When you experience a water loss and call SERVPRO of Mobile Northwest, the first thing we do upon arriving on the scene is to evaluate the situation. Utilizing exclusive DryBook Mobile technology, we key a variety of variables in to our tablets and formulate a customized plan of action based upon each customers’ unique situation. There are a multitude of factors that affect how we formulate our plan of attack. First, what category of water is involved? Clean water from a supply line, for example is handled completely differently than a sewage backup. The location of the affected areas and the materials involved contribute to the level of remediation versus replacement. The time of year, humidity levels and length of time the water sat also play a role in drying times. All of our first responders are Certified Water Restoration technicians who have extensive training in evaluating all of these variables to give our clients the best results. It may look like magic but it’s actually the science that makes SERVPRO the leader in the industry.
Can you Spot Water Damage?
We have the technology to identify hidden leaks.
In general, a house is one of the biggest investments you will make in your lifetime. In order to protect that investment, you should vigilantly look out for household problems and address them before they worsen.
One such dreaded homeowner issue is water damage. If left unattended, residential water damage can detrimentally impact the structure or spawn other complications, including mold that poses a health risk to inhabitants. Here are several methods for detecting water damage within your house.
1. Check the Floors
No matter what kind of flooring you have, it will manifest signs of water damage. For tile and wood, look for cracked, buckling or warped flooring. When it comes to carpet, be wary of damp spots, gradual rises, soft spots or the smell of mold and dampness.
2. Look for Stains
Water stains on the floor around the bathtub, toilet or sink, as well as stains on ceilings and walls, are some of the most obvious signs of water damage. Unusual stains could indicate there is a leaky pipe or drain inside the wall. Cracks in the drywall or areas that appear swollen and are soft to touch also may signify trouble. Peeling paint is another sign of loose water within wall spaces. As the drywall gets saturated, paint can lose adhesion.
3. Inspect Outside
Observe the exterior of your house. What you want to look for are pools of standing water that can indicate poor drainage in the yard, gutter spouts that aren’t transporting water far enough from the house or leaky rain gutters. Any of those issues could threaten the foundation of your house. Additionally, common signs of water damage on the roof may include pools of water; cracked, curled or missing shingles; or broken flashing.
4. Watch for Rust and Mold
Inspect your water heater and check for rust on the tank or damp spots on the floor. A rusted tank could indicate a slow leak. Additionally, corrosion around pipe connections could be caused by water seepage. Visual signs of active mold growth mean moisture is contacting microscopic mold spores, often in the nooks and crannies of your home. Finally, don’t rely solely on sight. When water stagnates, mold and bacteria can grow, producing a musty, unpleasant smell.
Caring for Your Contents
A fire can be one of the most stressful situations you will ever experience as a homeowner. Even a small fire can have widespread effects. Multiple areas of your home may be damaged by the soot residue and odor. You may even be uprooted and forced to live in a hotel or other temporary housing as the cleanup begins. At SERVPRO of Mobile Northwest we know how stressful this can be and want to reassure you that we will care for your contents as if they were our own. In many cases, it is more secure and cost-efficient to bring your contents to our facilities to be cleaned. Your items are carefully cataloged, packed securely and brought to our climate controlled warehouse to await cleaning. We then use our state of the are ultrasonic cleaning system to remove all soot staining and smell before repacking. If necessary, contents can be stored at our facility until you are back in your home. You can rest easy knowing your belongings are well cared for as you focus on putting your life back together.
Hurricane Season 2017
Hurricane Season officially arrived on June 1st and runs through November 30th. As everyone’s thoughts turn to hurricane preparedness during this time, we want you to know that SERVPRO of Mobile Northwest is ready for “whatever happens”. We have worked extensively to develop advanced response systems, to ensure that we are always “faster to any size disaster”. Our highly trained team members are ready to move 24/7 to help when it is needed most. In the event of catastrophic situations, we have a team of over 1600 franchises that make up our Disaster Response Network. They can provide support and added resources to help us aid clients in the event of a natural disaster. At SERVPRO, we have seen it all and we know that being prepared is the first step in minimizing damage to your home or business. The first step is to develop an emergency plan for your property and have all the supplies on hand to ride out a storm and the aftermath. Also make sure you have nailed down any evacuation plans and set up a family communication plan should you happen to get separated during a storm. If you own a business, call us today to set up a consultation for your FREE Emergency Ready Profile to reduce damage and minimize down time. As we saw recently with Tropical Storm Cindy, you never know what will happen when Mother Nature decides to strike. However; the best step you can take is to prepare for the worst and pray for the best!
What to Do with Water Damage?
GOT WATER DAMAGE?
We are here to help, SERVPRO responds immediately!
SERVPRO of North Mobile County proudly serves each of our clients, from residential to commercial. We will be on site quickly and our staff will give you the personalized attention you deserve. We specialize in the cleanup of water damage, fire damage, smoke damage, mold removal, trauma cleanup, vandalism cleanup, carpet cleaning and duct cleaning. Let us help you make it, “Like it never even happened.” Visit our website to see Before and After Pictures and other Blogs. SERVPRO of Mobile Northwest is ready 24/7 for any of your needs. We are a locally owned family company right here in Mobile County. We work, live, shop, volunteer and raise our families right here in Mobile.
Wood Floors After Water Damage
If you have water damage at home, call SERVPRO of Mobile Northwest. Some jobs need expert equipment and materials to remedy and warped hardwood floors are one of those jobs. The following tips can be started before we arrive onsite.
After removing wet items from the area, use a wet vacuum, such as a ShopVac, to remove as much of the water as possible. Go over the entire area multiple times, because even when you can’t see any more water on the floor, the vacuum may be still working to suction the rest of the water out of small cracks and crevices in the floor. Next, clean the surface with a disinfectant floor cleaner that doesn’t foam or suds. Something like Mr. Clean is a good choice.
Next, put a dehumidifier in the affected area and leave it running for at least a full day to further dry out the area. Also, consider putting fans in the room to help with the drying process. If it’s not humid outside or raining, you can open any windows as well.
When the floor is completely dry, check for signs of mold or mildew, and if you see any, treat it with a paste-like mixture of baking soda and water. Do not use bleach on your wood floors. If you can address the water damage problem right away, it’s more likely you’ll be able to salvage them. According to the EPA, mold can start growing in moist areas within 48-72 hours of the first initial contact the floors have with moisture. Time is critical when drying out hardwood floors affected by water and excess moisture.
Seeking out professional help is a good idea when the problem is in a large area or you think it’s not something you can handle yourself. SERVPRO of Mobile Northwest has sophisticated commercial equipment that helps pull moisture from underneath the floorboards for effective drying and allowing moisture to be released, even from the smallest of places. Moreover, if the damage occurs as the result of a natural disaster or some other weather event, your homeowner’s insurance may cover all or part of the damages that occur, so keep that in mind as well.
SERVPRO Water Mitigation Process
Water Damage Cleanup & Restoration
SERVPRO can provide a solution to your property's (regardless of whether it's your home or business) water damage needs.
- Uniformed employees will arrive on-site usually within four hours of notification to begin providing a resolution to the water damage situation
- Technicians communicate their assessment with the property manager or owner in detail before beginning the cleanup and restoration process
- Professionals utilize industry guidelines, knowledge, training and industrial equipment to examine the extent of the damage
- Restoration services include moisture detection, water extraction, dehumidification and contents inventory
- Closing the event work order in a timely manner through electronic claims reporting, consistent communication and professional restoration techniques
- SERVPRO is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, no matter rain, hail or snow 633-7500
Faster to your water damage problem in Mobile
Flooding and water emergencies don’t wait for regular business hours and neither do we. SERVPRO of Northwest Mobile provides emergency cleaning and restoration services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week—including all holidays.
Faster To Any Size Disaster
Flooding and water damage is very invasive. Water quickly spreads throughout your home and gets absorbed into floors, walls, furniture, and more. SERVPRO of North Mobile arrives quickly and starts the water extraction process almost immediately. This immediate response helps to minimize the damage and the cleaning and restoration costs.
Need Emergency Service? Call Us 24/7 – 633-7500
Damage Within Minutes
- Water quickly spreads throughout your property, saturating everything in its path.
- Water is absorbed into walls, floors, upholstery, and belongings.
- Furniture finishes may bleed, causing permanent staining on carpets.
- Photographs, books, and other paper goods start to swell and warp.
Hours 1 - 24:
- Drywall begins to swell and break down.
- Metal surfaces begin to tarnish.
- Furniture begins to swell and crack.
- Dyes and inks from cloth and paper goods spread and stain.
- A musty odor appears.
48 Hours to 1 Week:
- Mold and mildew may grow and spread.
- Doors, windows, and studs swell and warp.
- Metal begins to rust and corrode.
- Furniture warps and shows signs of mold.
- Paint begins to blister.
- Wood flooring swells and warps.
- Serious biohazard contamination is possible.
More Than 1 Week:
- Restoration time and cost increase dramatically; replacing contaminated materials and structural rebuilding may be extensive.
- Structural safety, mold growth, and biohazard contaminants pose serious risks to occupants.
About SERVPRO of Mobile Northwest
SERVPRO of Mobile Northwest specializes in the cleanup and restoration of residential and commercial property after a fire, smoke or water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.