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Say Goodbye to Mildew in 3 Easy Steps

11/30/2018 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO Say Goodbye to Mildew in 3 Easy Steps Mold on floor joists in Monticello,MN

Preventing Bathroom Mold 

Given a choice, would your tenants prefer restrooms with mildew or clean conditions? Answering the question is simple, but preventing bathroom mold at your property in Monticello, MN, may not be as easy. Here are three easy steps to keep your washrooms sanitary, sparkling and mildew-free.

1. Prevent

Once mold takes hold, it spreads swiftly, especially in humid environments. Take precautions in bathrooms to stop it before it starts:

  • Use mildew-resistant shower curtain liners.
  • Encourage occupants to wipe down the interior of showers after use.
  • Install an exhaust fan to increase ventilation.
  • Mount an air conditioning or dehumidifying unit.
  • Paint with a brand that contains mildewcide.

2. Replace

Sometimes bathroom mold is not entirely preventable. If renters report a musty smell or unsightly black spots, do not ignore the problem. Transform unpleasant mildew to clean surroundings by replacing the following:

  • Shower curtains, especially when not washable
  • Black, peeling or rotting caulk around the tub
  • Grout between tiles in shower walls or floors

3. Repair

Mold loves standing water. A leaking toilet, overflowing tub or breaking pipe all have the potential to cause water damage. After the primary water source is fixed, work with a mold remediation specialist to identify and remediate secondary visible and hidden mold. Act fast because mold growth starts in as little as 24 to 48 hours. Common hiding places include:

  • In or behind drywall
  • On top of and under flooring, including floorboards
  • On ceilings, especially above showers and under leaky areas
  • Behind wallpaper
  • On wood or particle board vanities

Unfortunately, it is possible to grow mildew in clean conditions, especially in rooms with high levels of humidity. Bathroom mold is fairly common, but fortunately, there are steps you can take to avert it. When prevention at your commercial property in Monticello, MN, is not enough, say goodbye to mildew by replacing impacted areas or working with professionals to repair the damage.

After a Commercial Fire - The Road To Recovery

11/21/2018 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO After a Commercial Fire - The Road To Recovery Smoke and soot damage from fire in Buffalo,MN

Feeling overwhelmed is an understatement in the aftermath of a commercial property fire in Buffalo, MN. As you walk through your building, you see fire, water and smoke damage. Decrease your anxiety by understanding the process of returning your property to pre-fire condition.

Before Cleanup Begins

There are several steps that take place before the restoration process starts. As a business owner, remember to keep documentation and remain in the loop. If you do not understand something, ask questions and seek clarification.

  • Typically, a fire restoration company first inspects your property to understand the magnitude of the fire, water and soot damage.
  • To prevent secondary damage and theft, professionals may board up windows or tarp the roof.
  • Check with your commercial property insurance agent to verify coverage. Oftentimes, insurance companies partner directly with restoration professionals.

The Cleanup Process

There are a multitude of steps when mitigating a fire disaster. Depending on the damage, this may include drying, cleaning, disinfecting, repairing or replacing materials.

  • Often, the first area targeted is water damage left from firefighting efforts or sprinkler systems. This type of damage spreads fast and can result in mold growth in as little as 24-48 hours. Water removal and drying is completed with professional-grade equipment such as air movers and dehumidifiers.
  • Smoke cleaning is a crucial component after a fire, as smoke damage and soot damage are usually present on most exposed surfaces. There are different techniques to clean and disinfect walls, ceilings, furniture and the air itself.
  • Once structures and contents are dry and clean, technicians use a variety of specialized methods to restore the building and your inventory to preloss condition.

A fire at your commercial property in Buffalo, MN, is very stressful. Fire, water and smoke damage likely permeate your every thought. Understand the restoration process ahead of you to reduce the fear of the unknown and put yourself on the road to recovery.

Roof Readiness: Protecting Your Roof Against Impending Winter Storms

11/14/2018 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO Roof Readiness: Protecting Your Roof Against Impending Winter Storms Trim your trees in your Albertville,MN area

Steps To Help Ensure Maintain Your Roof

While the inclement and frigid weather of Albertville, MN, is predictable and leads many homeowners to have emergency restoration services on speed dial, a home doesn’t have to be a victim to any looming winter storm. There are at least four practical steps homeowners can take to help ensure they quite literally maintain the roof over their heads.

1. Clear and Maintain Your Gutters

Cleaning out your gutters is not just a springtime gig. Maintaining clean gutters year-round helps to ensure that your roof remains structurally sound. In the winter, clogged gutters can lead to ice buildup, which eventually accumulates under your shingles and can lead to roof rot.

2. Trim Your Trees

The last thing you want to experience during a winter storm is the thunderous boom of a maple plummeting through your living room ceiling. Maintaining and trimming your trees at the change of every season can help you avoid the chaos and property loss from loose branches or rotted out trunks.

3. Replace Missing or Damaged Flashing

An essential aspect of roof health is to keep water out. Missing or damaged flashing can allow the ice and snow of a blizzard to seep into your attic space. Once moisture enters in, it can lead to the development and spread of mold, mildew and rot. Before the winter settles in, you may want to perform a visual inspection of your roofline to ensure everything is hunky-dory.

4. Repair and Inspect Your Chimney

In addition to inspecting your roof for cosmetic damage, like missing shingles, you should also examine your chimney. A leaning chimney or a chimney with old and cracking mortar can cause significant roof damage if not dealt with before the cold sets in. Frigid temperatures and exposure to ice can cause old or already cracking mortar to separate and fail. Additionally, if your chimney is already leaning, then the added weight of snow and ice can cause it to collapse.

Before any winter storm has time to pummel your roof, take the time to inspect it and the surrounding area. Stay safe and keep your roof over your head.

5 Ways To Eliminate Smoke Odor

10/23/2018 (Permalink)

Smoke odors are persistent. Methods such as air filtration, ventilation, or wiping residue off of surfaces are not likely to be sufficient. Particles of smoke drift into air ducts, nooks and crannies, and porous materials such as carpeting, drapery, and furniture. The only way to completely eliminate smoke odor is to permanently neutralize the presence of these particles. Here are five smoke cleaning methods suitable for smoke damage restoration.

5 smoke cleaning methods

1. Ozone Machines

Ozone machines release molecules that follow the same path as smoke particles and oxidize these sources of odor. This method is popular because it works quickly, but all occupants, pets, and plants must be temporarily evacuated.

2. Hydroxyl Generators

Hydroxyl generators destroy smoke particles with radicals generated by ultraviolet light. This method does not require evacuation, but may take anywhere from three to five times as long as an ozone machine.

3. HVAC Air Scrubbers

These scrubbers connect to the central air system to circulate air and filter out smoke particles. As these systems do not neutralize odor molecules, a faint smoke odor may linger. Some odor mitigation professionals may combine an air scrubber with another smoke cleaning method.

4. Thermal Foggers

Thermal foggers fill a home with fog for approximately 30 minutes before the residence is ventilated and allowed to dry. This highly effective odor elimination method also calls for evacuation and workers must wear respirators.

5. Vapor Modification

Vapor modification neutralizes odors by dispersing an aromatic compound in a mineral oil base with the assistance of a blower or fan. There is no need to evacuate during this treatment.

Out of these five methods, only two – ozone machines and thermal foggers – require evacuation. The other three methods can be pursued while you remain at home. A smoke cleaning service can work with you to determine which treatment options are right for a residence in Albertville, MN.

3 Types of Hail Damage That Should Worry Business Owners

10/17/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial 3 Types of Hail Damage That Should Worry Business Owners Hail damage on roof in Buffalo,MN

Protecting a Buffalo,MN, business from a storm requires diligence. When extreme weather targets the area, savvy business owners know they must worry about roof damage and other types of issues. When hail falls from the sky, though, the results can be both unexpected and tough to locate. Here are three types of hail damage that most worry business owners.

1. Damage to the Roof

The roof is one of the most important parts of any business' building. Not only does the roof provide shelter for employees and customers, but it also protects both inventory and equipment. When chunks of ice hit roofing systems, they often cause roof damage. Missing shingles, dented framing and other problems are common following even minimal amounts of hail.

2. Wet Insulation

If hail damages a roof, leaks become increasingly possible. Since most businesses have insulation in their rafters, a leaky roof can cause wet insulation. Without remediation from a reputable restoration service, soggy insulation can attract mold, mildew, fungus and other unwanted contaminants. As such, it is important to inspect both the roof and insulation after a major hailstorm.

3. Water Accumulation

When water stays where it is supposed to stay, it is usually a benefit to business owners. Unfortunately, with a roof leak, water can accumulate inside buildings. Commonly, water pools inside walls and beneath floors. Because this water is not easy to see, business owners often don’t realize it is present until it has promoted mold or fungal growth. Contracting with a remediation specialist is often the best strategy for locating accumulated water and drying out the area.

When the sky turns gray in Buffalo,MN, business owners often worry about hail causing roof damage. Unfortunately, visible damage isn’t the only type of risk associated with hail. To preserve the value and usability of your business, you must be aware of all types of hail-related problems.

Can You Keep Water-Damaged Carpet?

10/11/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Can You Keep Water-Damaged Carpet? Water damage on carpet in St.Michael, MN

Carpet is porous and may pose a challenge in the event of water damage. If this flooring material has been exposed to water from a pipe break, leak, or flood, you may be wondering whether it should be restored or replaced. Here are three considerations to help you make the right decision.

1. Which Type of Water Caused the Damage

Category One water is clean and treated. This is the type of water released in the event of a supply pipe break. Carpeting soaked with clean water may be able to be restored. Take action as soon as you notice the leak to reduce the amount of water to which flooring is exposed and the amount of time it remains saturated. Carpeting exposed to Category Two water, which may contain chemicals and microbes, or Category Three black water containing solid waste should be replaced.

2. How Long Was the Carpeting Exposed to Water?

Mold can start to develop within 24 to 72 hours of exposure to water. Fungi thrive in damp conditions such as those created by carpeting. Even if mold does not develop on the surface, moisture can permeate to the subfloor where conditions are ideal for mold spores to thrive. Carpeting exposed to water for a prolonged period of time poses a mold risk and should be torn up.

3. Which Method Is Most Cost-Effective?

If carpeting will require extensive cleaning, you should determine whether it is less expensive to attempt to restore or replace the flooring. Also consider whether keeping carpeting exposed to water may increase the possibility of mold, which will require mitigation.

Certified water damage restoration experts can recommend the best approach for dealing with wet carpet in your home in St Michael, MN. These companies have equipment that can make cleaning and drying water damage from a pipe break, flood, or leak easier and faster.

What are some facts of soot and smoke?

10/1/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage What are some facts of soot and smoke? Fire Damage in Commercial Building

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. 

Albertville, MN Smoke and Soot Cleanup

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 Wright County 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.

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?

Call Us Today – 763-295-1161

Should You Wait for an Adjuster After Storm Damage?

9/16/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Should You Wait for an Adjuster After Storm Damage? Flooding can cause damage after a severe storm

After a severe storm or flooding in St. Michael, MN, you may wonder whether to wait for a flood insurance adjuster before trying to mitigate flood damage. Here are three reasons not to wait before documenting damage and taking steps to limit the extent of secondary damage to your home.

1. Documentation Is All You Need to File a Claim

An insurance adjuster does not need to witness damage firsthand to process a claim, but you do need to document the damage. Take extensive dated photographic or video evidence. Keep records of possessions, as well as their condition and value, and locate receipts for high-value items if possible. Footage and itemized records should be enough to prove your home and possessions sustained the damage you claim.

2. Adjusters Are Likely To Be Backlogged

Depending on the extent of a flood or storm and how many homes and businesses were affected, it may take adjusters a while to follow up on your flood insurance claims. It is better to document and immediately take steps to mitigate damage to keep conditions in your home from worsening. As a matter of fact, your insurance may not provide as much of a payout if you cannot prove you did everything in your power to limit damage in a timely manner.

3. Secondary Damage Can Start In Hours

The longer water damage sits, the more likely it is that building materials and contents will need to be replaced rather than restored. Mold damage can start to emerge within only 24 to 48 hours following a flood. You should take steps to eliminate the presence of water and moisture in your home as soon as possible.

Don't wait for a flood insurance adjuster following adverse weather or flooding in St. Michael, MN. Contact water and storm damage specialists if you need assistance with flood damage mitigation or restoration.

For more on St. Michael click here

What is Category 1 Water Damage?

9/16/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial What is Category 1 Water Damage? Pipe Break can cause a category 1 water loss

Category One water damage is caused by a leak involving clean water. While the affected area may not need to be disinfected, it is important to eliminate all standing water and thoroughly dry the area as soon as possible. Find out more about the origin and risks of a Category One leak.

Where Does Category 1 Water Come From?

There are two common sources of a Category One leak:

• Broken pipe
• Supply line

Exposure to clean leaking water can still cause primary water damage and set the stage for secondary damage such as mold in a commercial property. Handle these leaks just as quickly as you would a leak involving contaminated Category Two gray water or Category Three black water.

How Do You Clean Up Category 1 Water?

Depending on the size of the leak, you may use a mop, towels, a wet vac, or another method for pumping out water. Clean water should not contain pathogens, solid waste, or chemicals, and so the cleanup process is not involved as for a Category Two or Three leak. Leaks involving contaminated water call for cleaning and disinfection. It is still necessary to thoroughly dry the area exposed to excess water to prevent mold from forming.

What Are the Risks of a Category 1 Leak?

A Category One leak can still cause primary water damage and pose a risk of secondary. If water that starts out clean filters through a floor or ceiling, it will become Category Two water and disinfection will become necessary. It is important to address this type of leak as quickly as possible to prevent the situation from becoming more serious.

If you experience a leak of Category One clean water at a commercial property in St. Michael, MN, you may be able to perform cleanup yourself. If the leak is extensive, contact a commercial water damage restoration firm.

For more on St. Michael click here

Types of Household Mold

9/11/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation Types of Household Mold Identifying the type of mold is priority in your home or business

Believe it or not, there are over 100,000 known types of mold on the planet. In the average home in St. Michael, MN, mold growth likely to be found includes Aspergillus and Cladosporium, or perhaps black mold, Stachybotrys atra. Mold remediation services are usually not difficult to find and can be quite effective at taking care of the problem. Mold is not only unsightly; it can also compromise the integrity of building materials or home furnishings.

Types of Mold and Where They Grow

Mold growth can occur in conditions where there has been water damage due to leaks, floods or excessively high humidity. Common types of household mold include the following:

• Aspergillus is a genus of several hundred mold species. It can grow on food, air conditioning systems, compost or porous surfaces damaged by water.
• Cladosporium is a genus that grows indoors and outdoors and can exacerbate allergies and asthma. Its spores are present in air and it thrives on live or dead plant material, textiles and food.
• Stachybotrys atra is commonly called black mold and often grows in building materials containing cellulose that have been damaged by moisture.

Household Mold Remediation

Though microscopic spores proliferate in the natural world, mold can become a problematic if allowed to colonize in a home damaged by excessive moisture, humidity or flooding. It sometimes, but not always, produces a musty odor that is easily detected.

Addressing the problem in the home begins with remediating the source of moisture. Porous materials that cannot be cleaned, such as drywall, will require replacement. Thoroughly drying the environment is a must to prevent the return of mold after remediation. Keeping home humidity below 45% is recommended to keep mold at bay.

Even the most vigilant homeowner can experience an episode of mold growth. Once detected, a timely response can prevent the spread of damage to building materials and belongings.

For more on St. Michael click here