Restoration Company vs. Contractor
Imagine you come home for lunch on a Wednesday afternoon and you walk into your living room covered with 8 inches of water.
What do you do?
Who do you call?
Do you call your family friend local contractor or Water Restoration Company?
What is the difference?
There are many differences between Contractors and Water Restoration Companies. Here are a few:
- A contractor’s job is to replace everything that is affected. This will include all flooring, walls, cabinets and even furniture. SERVPRO of Ascension Parish is certified in drying water damage to IICRC industry standards. We will not remove materials unless it is necessary. This prevents further interruption to your daily life.
- A contractor will have to replace all of the materials they took out of your home. This can take weeks waiting for material decisions, insurance approval, shipping, and installation time. SERVPRO of Ascension Parish average drying time is only 3 days. We have crews available 24/7/356 and someone to monitor your job daily.
- Replacing flooring, drywall, and all of your furniture is expensive. Restoring your home is a lot less expensive than replacing everything in your home.
When you call SERVPRO of Ascension Parish you can expect a First Responder on site within an hour and your home to be restored quickly by certified, professional technicians.
Where to look for Water Damage
Flooding is very common in Louisiana, but water damage can come from many different places and is not just a problem for people living on the coast. While the damage from a flood is pretty apparent, there are many ways water damage can happen to your home when you don’t even realize it.
Here are some common causes of water damage and how you can spot the warning signs.
Weather is a common cause of water damage. Rains cause flooding that can get into your home from the outside.
Even if it isn’t raining there is still moisture in the air. Damp air can lead to condensation and water damage to your walls. This is especially true of bathrooms and other damp areas of your home that don’t get much airflow.
Appliances like your washing machine, garbage disposal, water heater, toilet, and air conditioner can all contribute to water damage if they leak or stop draining properly.
Water from our pipes and plumbing systems can also cause water damage. Leaks and drips can go on for months, or even years, raising your water bill and doing unseen damage to your home.
So if these are all the ways water can sneak into your home, what are the signs of water damage?
Here are a few warning signs that you have a water damage problem in your home.
Standing water – This may sound pretty obvious, but if you notice water pooling in your house you have a water problem that needs to be taken care of immediately.
Bad smells – While water doesn’t normally have much of a smell, the mold and bacteria that grow in damp environments can give off a distinct musty, wet odor. If you smell mold or mildew you might have a water issue.
Stains and spots – Stains on the ceilings or walls can be a sign of water damage. You might have a leaky pipe or roof. Call SERVPRO of Ascension Parish at 225-663-8877 to determine the cause of the problem and to clean up the damage before it becomes a serious mold problem.
Peeling paint – Paint damaged by water will start to peel, bubble, or flake off.
Uneven surfaces – Water damage can cause floors, ceilings, walls, and other surfaces to warp and feel uneven.
Cracks – Water is always seeking the path of least resistance out of your home. Water can enter through cracks and once water finds it’s way in, the crack will expand allowing even more to get into your home. Make sure you seal all visible cracks on your property.
If you notice your home has water damage call the experts at SERVPRO of Ascension Parish Today at 225-663-8877.
Taking on Storms with Technology
SERVPRO of Ascension FREE Emergency Ready Profile
With Hurricane Season upon us, it is important to be ready for a storm and disaster can strike at a moment’s notice!
Technology is working hard to let us be aware of danger with more time to prepare before it hits! Technology can also be a vital tool in preparing for emergencies or disasters, as well as during or after to stay informed of the situation and in communication with others. From common technology you already use on a day-to-day basis to taking a few extra steps to prepare. Below are a few things that will help you be ready in the event of an emergency or disaster.
Store Information Online
There are many places to store important information securely online. Services like Google Drive and Dropbox offer a free way to store different types of files, from a Word document to images of important documents. Ready.gov suggests saving an electronic version of insurance policies, identification documents, medical records, and information on your pets, if necessary.
Follow the News
Stay informed by following agencies such as FEMA, local news channels, and local government on Twitter for the most up-to-date information in a disaster situation. You can also alert first responders if a rescue is needed through Twitter.
Mark Yourself Safe
The American Red Cross offers a Safe & Well check-in site to list yourself as safe or find family and friends in situations where communication is difficult to establish. Facebook also has a feature called Safety Check that is activated after natural disasters or a crisis. You will receive a notification from Facebook if you’re located in the affected area at that time.
Get in Touch
Make sure your contact information is up-to-date in your phone and e-mail for communication with family, friends, business contacts, and others whom you may need to get in contact with before, during, or after a disaster.
Keep a portable charger in your car and home in case of an emergency. You may need to recharge this from time to time, but you can also buy solar-powered chargers as well.
An Emergency READY Profile from SERVPRO of Ascension Parish will provide a FREE assessment of your facility to help prepare you, your property, or your business for an any emergency. By developing a SERVPRO Emergency READY Profile for your property or business, you minimize business interruption by having an immediate plan of action. Knowing what to do and what to expect in advance is the key to timely mitigation and can help minimize how water and fire damage can affect your property or business. Put help in the palm of your hand with the Ready Plan App. Get in touch with SERVPRO of Ascension Parish today for more information on developing an ERP for your property or business! Call us Today: 225-663-8877
Is Your Roof Ready for a Storm?
When it comes to our homes, and even commercial properties, our roofs are the first line of defense against storms. While spring/summer is when severe storms are most likely to occur in Ascension Parsh, the long and cold rainy days we have during the winter often result in water damages when they penetrate through a roof that was not repaired after a heavy storm season earlier in the year.
In order to ensure your roof is ready for anything the weather may bring you should check for damage regularly. Missing shingles, signs of small leaks, or mold damage are some of the things you yourself can check for regularly, especially following a hard storm or consecutive bad weather days. If you suspect there may be any type of problem with your roof, you should call in roofing professionals that can give you a complete assessment. When the weather gets bad the last thing you want to worry about is whether or not your roof can hold up against a storm, so try to do regular inspections throughout the year and at least one professional assessment per year in order to protect your home.
If you have a water damage due to a roof leak at your home or business, call SERVPRO of Ascension Parish anytime at 225-663-8877. Our team can be onsite quickly to begin the restoration process as soon as possible.
Contents Restoration (Fire)
From furniture to antiques to artwork and appliances, we'll treat your treasures with the care they deserve. While some items can be cleaned on-site, in many cases we'll need to inventory, pack out and transport the contents of your property to our state-of-the-art facility to ensure the best care possible.
- Contents may need to be cleaned off-site
- Contents inventory
- Determine replacement and restoration
- Ozone treatment
- Odor removal
- We arrive on-site and inventory all of your personal belongings.
- We carefully pack all salvable items to transport to our secure warehouse and cleaning facility.
- Unsalvageable contents are inventoried and discarded.
- Thorough cleaning
- Proper handling of all electronics
- Photographs and artwork
- Soft goods
- Dry Cleaning
- Odor Removal
Board Up Services - Post Fire
If your property in Ascension Parish has experienced a fire, there are several reasons why you might want to board up structural damage or windows. In addition to keeping the external elements out of a building with fire damage, boarding up can also prevent additional losses due to looting and make the fire cleanup process easier. SERVPRO of Ascension Parish offers full-service restoration specialists who can also assist in board-up services.
Here are four reasons to board-up after a fire.
- In a commercial setting, there may still be viable stock on the premises. If products that appear viable remain in the building, you should consider boarding up. These items may require assessment and cleaning and may not be fit for sale, but having them properly processed rather than stolen can be helpful for insurance purposes.
- You want to protect electronics and other valuables. Depending on the extent of the fire damage, you may be able to restore some electronics or other valuable property to working condition.
- You need to keep out the elements. If the structure of your property has sustained extensive damage, you should try to keep the elements out to prevent additional damage. Exposure to additional water, wind, or sunlight can compound the damage caused by smoke residue and soot.
- You want to limit soot damage. It is generally a good idea to reduce foot traffic on the scene of a recent fire. When soot gets embedded into carpeting or upholstery, it can be much more difficult to restore these materials to a pre-fire condition.
Talk to our experts at SERVPRO of Ascension Parish, about whether boarding up is a good strategy for preventing loss and limiting damage after a fire. Your major concern is likely to be how to recover from fire damage as quickly and completely as possible. Preventing looting and exposure to the elements can make fire cleanup more successful. Call SERVPRO of Ascension Parish today at 225-663-8877 for more information.
Preventing Mold in Commercial Buildings
Why should you worry about mold in your building? According to OSHA, some mold, over time, may cause structural damage to wood along with damage to furnishings and finishes. Use the following tips to help prevent mold growth in your business.
#1: Clean Out the Refrigerator
It can be difficult to keep track of shared refrigerators. Some people will always remember to clear out their leftovers, others won’t. Old food storage containers are a perfect breeding ground for mold. Over time, mold can travel to the shelving and even outside the refrigerator. Consider instituting an office refrigerator policy. If something is left in the fridge by a certain time each week, it goes in the garbage.
#2: Look for And Repair Leaks
Leaks from plumbing, windows, roofs, and more can lead to significant water damage in your business as well as an increased risk of mold growth. If you aren’t regularly inspecting your property, it’s easy for these leaks to go unchecked until they create a larger, more costly problem. Watch for telltale signs of a leak such as lower water pressure; wet spots on the floors, ceilings, or walls; and condensation around window sills and in attic spaces.
#3: Keep It Clean
It’s easy for anyone to get caught up in work and let clutter take over his or her workspace. However, clutter creates lots of hiding spots for crumbs and dust, which are both great food sources for mold. Make sure to clear the clutter and wipe down hard surfaces regularly. Make sure to promptly clean all spills as well. Clean and sanitize break rooms and bathrooms frequently. Both rooms provide ample opportunity for mold growth. These rooms should be cleaned at least weekly depending on how regularly people use each room.
#4: Turn on the AC/Dehumidifier
Leaks aren’t the only way for moisture to accumulate in your business. High humidity levels can lead to moisture and mold as well. On hot days, fans can cool you off, but they don’t do much for humidity levels. Run your AC or a dehumidifier to cut down the humidity in the building.
#5: Clean out Trash Cans
While you might switch out the liners regularly, can you remember the last time you washed out the trash cans? It’s easy for bits of food and condensation to sneak beneath liners into the can, which is all mold needs to grow. Try washing out office wastebaskets about once a month to prevent mold growth.
#6: Take Care of Your HVAC System
Your HVAC system can quickly distribute mold spores throughout your building if there is a problem. Make sure your HVAC system receives regular inspections. Sometimes moisture condenses inside air ducts or leaks drip onto ducts from ceiling tiles, which can lead to mold growth inside the ducts. Make sure to keep the HVAC drip pans clean and unobstructed. Additionally, replace your filters as needed.
#7: Slope the Ground Away from the Foundation
If the ground around your building slopes toward the foundation, water can accumulate and weaken your building’s structure. Additionally, it provides an ideal environment for mold to grow. The ground should slope away from the building. You should also make sure your building follows the local building codes for drainage. Mold is persistent. Even if you follow all the right steps it’s still possible for mold to grow and spread in your building.
Fortunately, at SERVPRO of Ascension Parish, we have the right experience in mold remediation to make your place of business “Like it never even happened.” Unfortunately, mold doesn’t stay put, it grows quickly. You’ll want to give us a call as soon as you notice it, so we can start the remediation process. Our technicians have the training, equipment, and knowledge necessary to help locate and remediate mold efficiently. If you find mold in your place of business, call us today at 225-663-8877
Causes of Commercial Water Damage
When business owners visualize water damage, they often picture a massive storm wiping out power lines, flooding offices, and shutting down businesses for days at a time. It is true that commercial water damage is often the result of floods and water that stems from weather events and storms.
However, many entrepreneurs and business space renters (property managers) forget that storms and severe weather aren't the only causes of floods and water damage. Here are some of the typical causes of water damage to commercial buildings.
1. Malfunctioning sprinkler systems
Some older office and retail buildings still have outdated sprinkler systems that work in conjunction with fire protection systems. While such sprinklers can come in handy during a fire emergency, they can also cause commercial flood damage if they are faulty or in need of replacement. This could easily damage inventory and business assets.
2. Damaged appliances and equipment
This cause of commercial flood damage is more common in restaurants and catering facilities, as well as any business that has appliances and equipment that make use of water. If the appliance fails and sends water across your building, especially during late hours when no one is around, you may come back to work and face a water emergency.
3. Broken pipes and plumbing
Just like in a residence, if the plumbing system in your workplace fails water damage could be the result.
4. Backed up sewer lines
This is another cause of commercial water damage that often catches business owners by surprise. Should the sewer line to your building back up or become damaged, realize the potential dangers of contaminated Black Water which can cause health effects and ruin products and office furnishings.
If your business has suffered commercial water damage, SERVPRO of Ascension Parish will get you back up and running again. Call us anytime, 24/7 at (225) 663-8877 for fast help.
Protect your Business from Storm Damage
Here are are, at the start of Hurricane season 2019.
So we thought it would be a great time to cover some tips to protect your business in the event of a storm.
A flooded building can wreak havoc on your business operations. If flood water is a real concern in Louisiana, it is important to do what you can now so that your business property is better protected later. Here's how you can protect your property from water damage.
Preparing Your Building
Before a flood even occurs, you can take steps to seal your building from water. Start by applying a waterproof coating to the exterior walls. Several other steps are also important.
" Install waterproof shields over windows and doors where possible.
" Strengthen walls to stand against the pressure of flood water or flood debris.
" Seal all areas where utilities enter the building.
" Anchor the building if necessary.
Protecting the Lower Levels
Inspect your first floor to ensure there are no areas where flood water can easily enter the premises. Regrade any land that slopes into your property, extend or redirect gutter spouts and repair any cracks in the walls. Move any valuable equipment or furniture to higher ground and create digital backups of any important paper documentation.
Taking Other Safety Measures
Water damage is not the only thing to worry about during flooding. It is also important to properly anchor any fuel tanks to prevent the water from sweeping them away, which can cause the lines to break and fires or explosions to happen. Sewer backflow valves are also important.
Preparing for Restoration
No matter how well you prepare your building for a flood, at least some damage is still likely to occur. Call a well-respected restoration company to help you remove moisture, dry materials and get your property ready to do business again.
Being 100 percent prepared for a natural disaster is practically impossible, but preparing now for a later storm means getting back into the swing of things as quickly as possible after any damage happens.
Can my Carpets be Saved?
One of the most common questions asked after flooding or a water damage is, "Do my carpet have to be replaced?" After your home or business has been affected by water, you'll need to handle some repairs and assessments before you can determine whether the carpet can stay.
Step One: Contact a Professional
There are many reasons to work with a restoration professional immediately. These experts have the equipment best suited to facilitating a quick and comprehensive recovery from flooding. In many cases, your insurance company may prefer that you work with professionals and may not provide coverage if you didn't respond to the pipe break appropriately. Water damage restoration professionals can provide you with expert advice concerning water exposure to your home and furnishings.
Step Two: Consider the Length of Exposure
If the materials and furnishings in your home have been wet for more than 72 hours, it is probably best to replace porous items. For example, any padding under your flooring could be harboring mold spores. It is very difficult to thoroughly dry and clean padding, so it will also need to be replaced.
Step Three: Identify the Type of Flood Water
Did the water come from an interior pipe or did it back up from the sewage system? If the water came from a clean water source, such as a kitchen sink, there's much less risk than if contaminated water affected your home. If you aren't certain in your assessment of the type of water, ask a qualified professional for testing.
Step Four: Carefully Weigh Your Options
As restoration options are presented to you, consider time, inconvenience, cost, and safety. For example, if you have to replace the padding, you may need to spend a lot of time carefully removing the carpet so that you don't damage it. Before you handle either, you'll need to be sure you aren't exposing your home or family to mold and contaminants.
We are available to provide answers and advice. It's generally best to call us immediately after discovering your home/business has been affected by water. SERVPRO of Ascension Parish 225-753-3434