Recent Posts

Prevent Damage to Your Home by Flushing the Water Heater

5/28/2020 (Permalink)

Man's hands unscrewing a screw-nut on a water heater with a wrench on a boiler Flushing your water heater allows the appliance to work properly

Follow The Below Steps To Keep Your Heater Working Well

Sediment can build up in your water heater over time and damage the appliance. The heater may even malfunction completely, causing a flood that necessitates cleanup and restoration specialists.
Luckily, there is an easy way to maintain your heater. You just have to perform a regular water heater flush. The process is simple, and all you need is a drainage area, a hose, and a screwdriver. Follow the below steps to keep your heater working well for years to come.

1. Turn Off the Heater
Gas heaters can be turned off by extinguishing the pilot that controls the device. If you have an electric heater, you can power it down via the circuit breaker.

2. Attach the Hose
Next, connect one end of the garden hose to the drain valve of the water heater. The other side of the hose should be placed in an area that won't be harmed by excess sediment and warm water.

3. Drain the Water Tank
Start by opening the drain valve of the heater and allowing the water to flow for several minutes. To speed up the process, you should then turn on the hot water faucet in your kitchen. Wait a few more minutes before turning off the water supply valve. This should cause the flow of water to cease. You may want to do another quick flush before closing the valve again.

4. Turn On the Water Supply
After the sediment and water have been drained from the heater, close the valves for good and turn on the water supply. To make sure the tank is full, check to see when the water is flowing smoothly from the kitchen faucet.

5. Turn On the Power
Once the tank has filled up with water, you can restore power to the heater. Don't forget to turn off the kitchen faucet, as well.
Flushing your water heater allows the appliance to work properly. It is a simple step you can take that prevents long-term damage to your Albertville, MN, home.

What To Expect During a Fire Restoration

5/28/2020 (Permalink)

Inside of a building burned Fire damage in Monticello, MN

Here are Three Common Steps

During a fire restoration at your Monticello, MN, home there are a few things you may see the fire damage restoration service do. These steps are designed to help the professionals working on your home complete the work in a way that can return the affected area to pre-fire conditions. Here are three common steps.

1. Damage Assessment

One of the first parts of a restoration is a damage assessment. This will allow the crew working on your home to come up with a plan for damage cleaning, repairs, item cleaning, and fishing steps. Having a plan can allow them to proceed safely and efficiently so they can complete cleaning and repairs in a timely manner.

2. Item Cleaning

Another thing a fire restoration service may offer is the ability to clean and restore damaged household items. This may depend on the damage severity and item material, but in many cases personal items can be restored. This includes furniture, clothing, books, electronics, home decor, and more. If you have questions about weather certain items are salvageable and how, a restoration professional can help.

3. Odor Removal

The restoration team working on your home can also take care of any orders that might linger after smoke damage. They can do this using a combination of cleaners and an ozone machine. Depending on the repair type they can also use deodorizing paint. Severely damaged materials may need to be replaced completely, but the professionals working on your home should be able to do so in a way that leaves a seamless transition between the original materials and the new.

The fire restoration service working on your home may go through a number of different steps to return your home to pre-fire conditions. They may first assess the damage and create a restoration plan. You will also see them clean affected items and work of removing any smoke odor. If you have any questions these professionals can help.

5 Tips for Drying Water Damage

5/13/2020 (Permalink)

Air mover on a carpet drying the area Drying equipment placed in St. Michael, MN

Five Damage Tips for Mitigation

Water can cause extensive damage to a commercial building within a matter of hours. Standing water and residual moisture should be extracted and drying methods used to avoid secondary damage, such as mold growth. Here are five of the most important damage tips for mitigation and cleanup.

1. Extract Standing Water
Eliminating standing water with portable pumps or a wet vac is the first step toward addressing water damage. Water damage mitigation professionals can perform a fast and thorough extraction and provide cleaning tips for building materials and contents.
2. Increase Airflow
Restoration specialists may recommend the use of ventilation equipment such as air movers or fans to promote drying. Ventilation is an ideal drying method after a pipe burst introduces clean water into a structure. Areas exposed to contaminated water for long enough for mold to start forming may be an exception, as circulating air can spread spores.
3. Consider Heated Methods
Heat may be helpful for expediting drying in some situations. The degree of contamination, duration of damage, and affected materials are essential considerations for determining the best drying methods. Restoration experts can offer case-specific damage tips.
4. Lower Humidity Levels
Reducing residual moisture levels in the air and porous or semi-porous materials is helpful after any type of water damage. Mold needs moisture and food sources to flourish. A combination of cleaning, disinfecting, and lowering humidity discourages fungi from growing.
5. Wait Until Drying Is Complete
Rebuilding or restoration should not begin until the portion of a structure that has suffered water damage has been cleaned, disinfected, and thoroughly dried. This includes replacing any building materials torn out due to contamination.
Lowering moisture levels within 24 to 48 hours after water damage is essential for avoiding mold. Trained water damage professionals can quickly extract water and recommend the best damage tips for a building in St Michael, MN.

Know the Types of Flood Waters

5/1/2020 (Permalink)

stair of a House fully flooded during the flooding of the river A flooded house in Annandale, MN

When water damage from a flood invades your Annandale, MN, home, it can be overwhelming. Along with saturated cherished belongings, it may mean extensive repairs and lingering problems. While you may want to jump in and start the cleanup process, it is important to understand that not all water is the same or safe.

Types of Flood Waters

The source of the water issue plays a big role in the cleanup process. There are three types of water categories.

Clean Water: This does not pose an immediate health risk. It includes water without contaminants. It may be the result of a pipe burst, damaged appliance, toilet holding tanks, or rainwater. If left unchecked, it can turn into the next category.
Gray Water: Since this type may have chemicals or other contaminants, it may pose a minimal health risk if ingested. Culprits creating this type often include dishwashers, sinks, washing machines, or aquariums. Over time, the contamination can spread and bump this up to the third water category.
Black Water: This is the most unsanitary water. During flooding, soil, debris, and sewage get mixed in with the water, which means bacteria, protozoans, molds, fungi, and viruses could be in the water.

Drying Out and Cleaning Up
Water damage created by the first two categories needs to be immediately addressed. If the affected area can be dried out within 48 hours, it minimizes the chances of further damage. After that time has passed, it is best to consider it black water and get the help of a flood, water, and mold damage expert. Cleanup for this category of water requires extra safety measures during the cleanup process, as well as advanced tools to eradicate mold growth and any lingering odors.
While some water damage may seem a breeze to clean up, taking a moment to consider the source of the problem is important for your safety. Instead of dealing with the hassle, count on a professional to make it “Like it never even happened.”

Tips for Maximizing the Value of Fire Sprinklers

4/20/2020 (Permalink)

Factory roof structure and automatic fire protection in building system. Fire sprinkler system in Howard Lake, MN

Tips for Maximizing the Value of Fire Sprinklers

The methods of fighting commercial fires have changed over the centuries, but water is still a go-to resource for extinguishing a blaze. In ancient Roman times, the first fire departments arrived on the scene, but sometimes had ulterior motives: they would only offer to help if the building owner would sell the property. Fortunately, the fire service has improved since then. For building owners, a fire sprinkler system offers a quick and effective response to a fire in Howard Lake, MN. It can catch a fire in its early stages, either putting out the fire or at least slowing its spread. A few tips can help you get the most out of your system.

Install the Right System

If you run a small business, the cost of a fire sprinkler system will be a factor in what type you buy. It's possible to install a system that only covers certain critical areas of your company, such as a computer or electrical area. It's always a good idea to work with a licensed and insured contractor to install the system in accordance with pertinent codes and standards. The contractor may recommend a chemical corrosion inhibitor which helps prevent leaking and improves hydraulic performance. Remember, sprinkler systems have numerous benefits, including the following:

  • Automatic operation triggered by heat
  • Superior fire suppression
  • Rapid activation
  • Enhanced peace of mind
  • Reduced insurance premiums

Make the Right Moves
Once a fire sprinkler unit is in your building, make sure to maintain it properly. Also, equip your company with a robust alarm system and an adequate supply of fire extinguishers. If your sprinklers do go off, you will need fire sprinkler cleanup by a trusted fire remediation team. Water damage is always a consequence of putting out a fire and should be taken care of by professionals. They can also take care of any fire damage in the building and remove the effects of soot and smoke damage, restoring your building to good condition again.

Flooding vs. Other Water Damage

4/10/2020 (Permalink)

Dehumidifier and air mover placed on the floor, wall tear out covered with plastic Storm damage after tear out in Rockford, MN

Flood damage to your Rockford, MN, business can be a major problem. However, insurance companies and their clients often have different ideas about what constitutes flooding.

Types of Water Damage

Although insurance companies are very specific about the definition of flooding, there are several ways your building can incur water damage. The following are three types of damages that can lead to inundation:

  1. Storm damage
  2. Water damage
  3. Flood damage

Storms can damage roofs, burst pipes, break windows and cause other issues that allow water to enter the building. If storm damage leads to water incursion, most property owners' policies will cover this. Also if the building floods because of a burst pipe, the insurance company will classify that as water damage rather than flooding. That also goes for other common water-related issues, including malfunctioning appliances and many roof leaks. However, if your building is involved in a flood, as defined by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, you must have flood insurance to be covered. Floods are defined as water covering at least two acres or two separate properties. Additionally, the water must come from one of the following sources: mudflow, surface water runoff or overflow of inland or tidal water (due to heavy rainfall or erosion). If the damage is classified as flood-related, standard property owners' insurance will not cover it.

Water Damage Restoration Process

Regardless of the cause of the water damage, it is important to get your property cleaned up as soon as possible to prevent mold growth. First, remove the standing water. There are specialized pumps and vacuums for this. Then dry out the remaining water. You may need to use fans or dehumidifiers. Next, sanitize all affected items. Everything that cannot be fully cleaned and dried should be thrown away. Finally, restore or replace all damaged items.
Just as there are a variety of causes for water and flood damage, there are different specifications for cleaning up afterward. An experienced restoration service can help you get your business back to normal quickly and safely.

Why Your Household Mold Keeps Coming Back

3/26/2020 (Permalink)

Hand in blue glove tears off wallpapers damaged by fungus Mold removal in Delano, MN

Mold can damage surfaces in your home and require costly cleanup. When you suspect mold in your home, your instinct is to eliminate it quickly. Certain varieties, such as black mold, can bring toxicity to humans and pets. It is wise to act as soon as you see signs of mold or smell a musty odor.
If you suspect your home is infested with toxic mold, it is not recommended you attempt the mold remediation yourself. The safest strategy is to consult a mold specialist who can test your home for mold, evaluate the severity of your infestation and recommend a cleanup and removal protocol. If an expert determines your problem does not involve a toxic variety, such as black mold, you can move forward with addressing the problem.

Mold-Removal Mis-Steps

In an effort to remove mold, well-meaning homeowners often contribute to the problem of returning or spreading.

Removing mold-infested materials is not effective unless the surrounding humidity level is reduced.
Using bleach products does not generally eliminate mold and can make it worse by masking the visible signs of a problem.
Using mold-resistant paint over existing paint can trap spores between paint layers where they continue to grow.
Holding on to items once infested with mold creates a high likelihood of a recurrence.
Attempting to self-clean toxic mold, such as black mold, is strongly discouraged.

If you’ve made any of these mistakes, be reassured that there are effective ways to eradicate mold from your home.

Getting Rid of Mold For Good

The key to controlling mold is eliminating the root of the problem. A plumbing or roof leak can create a favorable environment for mold. Once you permanently address these issues, you decrease the chances of post-cleanup mold recurrence. It’s essential you discard all property in your home that was once affected by mold.
If mold found its way into your Delano, MN, home, avoid mold cleanup until toxicity is ruled out. Once you remedy any moisture problems, your cleanup efforts will be more successful. As difficult as it is, let go of that mold-damaged first-edition book. You may be rewarded by a mold-free home.

We are Cleaning Experts

3/17/2020 (Permalink)

green graphic Give us a call today!

SERVPRO is Here to Help during this time of need 

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

Specialized Training 

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

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

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

Specialized Products 

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

Call Today for a Proactive Cleaning 

If your home or business needs deep cleaning services, call the experts today – SERVPRO of Wright County

How to Prevent Damage From Severe Storms

3/17/2020 (Permalink)

Woman watching TV and using remote controller The more advance warning you have, the more time you will have to prepare for a storm

When it's winter in Clearwater, MN, it's important to be prepared. A winter storm can come with high winds, heavy snow, and ice. All of these things can cause damage to your business. Here are some tips for how to best prepare for upcoming storm damage.

Watch the Weather

The more advance warning you have, the more time you will have to prepare for a storm. There are multiple ways you can check your weather forecast:

  • Your local news station
  • The weather app on your phone
  • Online

Setting up alerts on your phone to go off when you are under a winter storm watch or warning can also give you some indication for when a storm pops up unexpectedly.

Secure Light Items

If you have items outside that can blow away in a storm, either bring them inside or secure them. Not only do you want to avoid losing these items, but you also want to prevent it from flying and hitting another item, causing damage.

Eliminate Pipe Risks

The cold weather that comes with winter storms can cause a pipe to break. There are a couple of ways to prevent this. For pipes that face an outside wall or may be exposed to cold temperatures, leave the water dripping. In addition, be sure that you keep the thermostat at the same temperature at night as you do during the day.

Prepare for Power Outage

Heavy snow from a storm can cause tree branches to fall onto power lines. Sometimes, the weight of the snow is enough to bring a power line down. Prepare for a potential outage by making sure all of your data is backed up.
Storm damage from a winter storm can be devastating, but there are some things you can do to help prevent it. Watch the weather to know when a storm is coming, secure items that may fly away, keep water dripping from faucets and be ready for a power outage. When you do experience storm damage, trust your storm restoration experts to help repair the damage.

3 Tell-Tale Signs You Need to Clean the Dryer Vent

2/27/2020 (Permalink)

dryer lint filter has been cleaned to prevent fires Regular maintenance will save you money and prevent a lint fire

Warning Signs That Tell It's Time To Clean The Dryer Vent

Cleaning your dryer vents isn’t just a nice thing-to-do as a homeowner in Maple Lake, MN. It is one of the most important house projects that could save you from a potential dryer fire. In return, the appliance works efficiently and serves you for a long time without breaking.
Warning signs that tell it’s time to clean the dryer vent include:

  • Clothes take longer to dry
  • Burning smell
  • Vent trap doesn’t open correctly

1. Clothes Take Longer to Dry
When a dryer vent is clogged, clothes take longer to dry as hot air and moisture cannot leave the drum freely. That translates to 2 or more cycles on top of your regular rounds for the clothes dry. This prolonged usage puts more wear and tear on the appliance and therefore cutting its lifetime by almost half.

2. Burning Smell
If you detect a burning smell from your dryer, please turn it off immediately. That could be a clog in the lint trap or the drum, and you are looking at a possible lint fire. Hot clothes and longer drying time accompany this symptom, and the best cause of action is to clear the clog before further usage. It is also a good idea to inform everyone who uses the machine about this issue.

3. The Vent Trap Doesn’t Open Properly
A stuck vent trap is also another sign of lint build-up. It could be the result of overdue maintenance, and it will kill your appliance eventually. However, this is an extreme case. So, you might want to check for debris or lint around the dryer hose to catch this problem before it causes a nasty clog or a lint fire.
Dryers are a blessing to the 21st century and should be treated as such. Don’t wait till the appliance to malfunction so you can start troubleshooting. Regular maintenance will save you money and prevent a lint fire in the long run.