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How to Prevent Home Flooding During the Storm Season

7/13/2021 (Permalink)

palm tree in storm tree in windy storm in Tallahassee

How to Prevent Home Flooding During the Storm Season

Home flooding isn't just annoying; it can cost you thousands of dollars. Here's how to prevent your home from flooding this storm season.

Storm season is just around the corner, and the question on many people's minds is how can I prepare for them and prevent flooding from happening. According to the Congressional Budget Office, hurricane winds and the flooding that comes with storms cause on average $54 billion in damages. 

When flooding happens, it can be extremely costly to the homeowner, not only in terms of the monetary value but also the personal belongings left behind. 

If you are looking to prevent home flooding from happening in your house, keep reading this guide to learn tips and tricks to keep you safe during the storm season. 

1. Put Away Loose Outdoor Items

If it isn't staked deep into the ground, it should be stored away to prevent the items from being picked up by the wind and causing damage to your home. This means putting away things like:

  • Gardening tools (shovels, wheelbarrow, mower)
  • Sports equipment (basketball hoop, goalpost)
  • Patio furniture
  • Plants and Flowers

Cleaning these items up will mean less potential debris flying around your home during the storm. 

2. Create a Sandbag Barrier

It's not uncommon to use sandbags to prevent excess floodwater from entering your home. Strategically placing sandbags around the house can act as flood barriers for homes that are prone to flooding. 

If your home is in a flood zone, sandbags can be especially helpful to create a barrier from rising floodwater. Try to cover areas that have an opening, like any doors or windows. 

3. Inspect for Leaks & Cracks

Before the storm hits, take a look around the perimeter of the house and look for any cracks or holes that may have occurred in the foundation or siding. Patching these holes beforehand is a smart idea to help reduce the chances of flooding from happening. 

New research is predicting homeowners will pay $20 billion in flood-related damages this year. The more you can prepare and protect your home, the less you will end up paying in damages. 

4. Cover the Windows

Windows are the most susceptible part of your home to damage. Covering them before can help protect them from things that are picked up by the wind, such as:

  • Tree branches
  • Roofing materials
  • Signs
  • And other debris

If you want peace of mind from flying debris, you can consider installing storm shutters to protect your windows from damage.

5. Have a Plan

Although you may have prepared for the storm, damage can still happen. And if it does, it's crucial to have a plan in place if things get bad. Plan on going to a friend's or family's house in the event you must evacuate. 

And if damage does occur to your home, make sure to use a storm flooding restoration service to clean up the mess and prevent further damage like mold from happening.

Home Flooding: Cleaning up the Mess

Now that the storm season is arriving, it's critical to prepare in the event a storm does occur in your area. Looking up things like "is my home in a flood zone?" and "where to go if an evacuation occurs" can help you prepare for the worst. Predicting storms is impossible, but preparing can help you if it does occur.

If you are in need of cleanup or restoration due to flooding or other storm damage, contact us today, and we can help!

But I Don't See Any Water: How to Spot Water Damage Warning Signs

7/13/2021 (Permalink)

water damage on floor inside home flood inside Tallahassee home

But I Don't See Any Water: How to Spot Water Damage Warning Signs

Just because you don't see it doesn't mean it isn't there. Make sure you keep reading below to learn how to spot the warning signs of water damage.

Is your house suffering from water damage? Chances are you don't know, hence why you're reading this article.

We're going to take a look at some of the signs of water damage, even if you don't physically see water, so keep reading to see if you need to take action on some suspect areas in your home.

Smells

If you smell damp in a home, it's usually a pretty good indicator that there is at least some water accumulating somewhere it shouldn't be. The smell of damp and mold is very distinctive, and while it's difficult to describe, you know it when you smell it.

Sounds

While it's not realistic to spend your days with your ear against the wall of your house, you may catch the sound of trickling or dripping water. The first thing to check is your faucets, and if they're all shut, it may mean that there is water leaking from pipes behind the wall.

This can lead to water damage, so act quickly.

Issues With Walls

The walls are probably the biggest and most obvious indicator of wall damage. Take a look at both the paintwork and the condition of the wall itself.

Paintwork Issues

Any moisture behind walls can seep through to the paintwork, causing it to crack or bubble. Painting over this is not a sensible solution, and these signs should be taken as an incentive to do something about the issue.

Wall Swelling

A more severe case of water damage could cause the drywall to swell. This is caused by water saturating the drywall. Simply replacing it will not solve the problem and will end up becoming more and more expensive the longer you leave it.

The Wall Feels Damp

If you put your hand on the wall and it feels cold and/or damp, it could be a sign of water damage. A home with water damage might never quite feel dry and will take longer to heat.

Take the weather and climate into account—if it's cold outside, cold walls inside do not necessarily mean you have water damage!

Mold Growth

One of the most disheartening things to see around your home is mold. It can be expected to accumulate over time in kitchens and bathrooms, especially if those areas are neglected.

However, if you start to see mold along the bottom of the walls or in random places, it can be a sign of water damage. Mold can cause health effects, so it's best to treat the matter with a degree of urgency.

Catch Water Damage Early

It's important to keep an eye on your property, especially if it is older. Water damage can be devastating if left unresolved, and it's also not the best idea to try and remedy it yourself.

Get in touch with SERVPRO of Central Tallahassee if you have any concerns based on what you've read here, and check out some of the other articles across the site to find out more about what we offer.

When the Flames Die Down: Why You Can't Skip Fire Damage Restoration

7/13/2021 (Permalink)

fire damage inside home soot on floor from fire damage inside Tallahassee home

When the Flames Die Down: Why You Can't Skip Fire Damage Restoration

You aren't done fighting the fire when the flames are gone. Take a look at this guide to learn why you can never skip fire damage restoration. 

Over 50% of residential home fires in 2019 started in the kitchen during cooking. If your home was affected by a fire, the initial blaze itself could be only the start of your worries.

Fire damage can turn a happy home into a living nightmare. If you have suffered from a fire, you need to ensure proper fire damage restoration gets done on your property.

While it is easy to overlook fire restoration in the traumatic aftermath of a fire, neglecting it can have some serious consequences.

Fire Damage Leads to Structural Issues

If you want to ensure the structural integrity of your home you need to focus on fire damage restoration services immediately after an incident occurs. The longer you wait, the weaker your home's critical structures can become.

You won't know the extent of your fire damage unless you get your home inspected by a professional. Only then can you continue the fire damage restoration process

The fact that your home didn't get burned down in your fire is a miracle in itself. Don't push your luck by putting off important fire restoration work. The last thing you want is your home collapsing after surviving the worst of it.

Choosing Between Fire Restoration Companies

To start, try Google searching fire restoration near me and see what comes up. You may want to sift through some online reviews and customer testimonials.

These allow you to get a good feel for who a company is and what they have to offer. Never go with a fire restoration company with no reviews or excessively bad reviews.

You want to make sure that whoever restores your home after a fire does professional quality work for an affordable price. Make sure that they have experience with fire restoration as well.

The amount of time they have been in business is a good indicator of what kind of quality you can expect. Try to find a veteran in the business to ensure that your fire restoration gets handled right.

Move on With Your Life

A fire is a life-altering experience that you want to be able to put behind you as fast as possible. To make this a reality, you need to hire fire damage restoration services as soon as possible after your incident.

Only then can you ensure the structural integrity of your home, and the health of your family. When you are ready to begin the restoration process, contact us today so we can get things started the right way.

Flushed... Not so Far Away: How to Clean up a Sewer Line Leak

7/13/2021 (Permalink)

sewage pipes sewage pipes where sewage damage can occur in commercial buildings in Tallahassee.

Flushed... Not so Far Away: How to Clean up a Sewer Line Leak and Why you Should Call SERVPRO of Central Tallahassee

Even a small sewer line leak can turn into a major issue quickly. Make sure you keep reading this guide to learn how to clean up the mess.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, people are seeing a 25 percent increase in plumbing issues due to more frequent use. One of these common problems is a sewage backup or a sewer line leak. 

Not only can these types of leaks cause serious damage, but they can also cause bring major contaminants into your home. 

If you own a home, small business, or restaurant, you need to know the best ways to spot signs of a sewer line leak and how to clean up effectively. 

Here is your quick guide on everything you need to know about fixing a sewer line leak and the following clean-up. 

See if You Can Stop the Leak 

If you come upon a plumbing failure like a sewer line leak, first try to see if you can safely stop it. Turn off the water to the entire house. This will prevent further leakage. 

If you can, try to determine where the leak is coming from. Is the main sewer line leaking or is it happening somewhere else? Calling a professional who specializes in sewer line leak repair can help you identify the source of the leak to better inform the clean-up. 

Take Picture for Your Insurance Company

A critical part of any sewer line leak clean-up process is to take pictures for your insurance company. Take pictures of any damage caused by the leak, including to the walls, floors, and furniture. 

The Importance of Cleaning and Sanitizing

If you have a sewer line leak, clean-up and sanitization are critical. Bacteria and other contaminants can cause infection or illness if not cleaned properly. 

If the resulting mess is relatively small and you can manage the clean-up, first try to mop up or wet-vac any excess water. Wear protective gloves and shoes. Use hot, soapy water to clean off any surface the water from the leak touched. 

Do your best not to track the water into other parts of your home not affected by the leak. You do not want to spread any contaminants any farther. 

If the sewer line leak is extensive, you need to call a professional team to clean and sanitize your home effectively. 

Need to Clean a Sewer Line Leak Fast? 

Whether you have a sewer line leak in a yard or indoors, it is critical that you fix it fast and begin the clean-up process. While you should try to clean the best you can, calling a professional team can help give your house a deep clean that will give you peace of mind. 

If you suspect you have a sewer line leak, be sure to reach out and give us a call here at SERVPRO of Central Tallahassee. In addition to fire and water cleanup and restoration, we can help you fix a sewer line leak fast before it can cause any further damage. 

Reach out and give us a call to get help cleaning up your mess today. 

The Complete Guide on What to Do After a Flood

5/28/2021 (Permalink)

walking in flood flood damage in tallahassee

The Complete Guide on What to Do After a Flood

Floods are everywhere; 99% of American counties have experienced at least one flooding event since 1996. 

They can occur at any moment and damage any part of your home. It is absolutely important that you know what to do after a flood. But the steps to take after a flood involve a lot more than evacuating and wiping down puddles. 

What can you do to stop water inside your home? What should your first steps be after you return? How can you help clean up your property? 

Answer these questions and you can make your flood cleanup a lot easier. Here is your quick guide. 

Stop the Water When You Can 

When people think about flood damage, they think about natural disasters bringing water in. It is true that a hurricane can bring floods into your home. 

But burst pipes or appliances can also fill your home with water. When that's the case, turn the main water valve off. Lock doors leading into the room and fill the gaps in them with towels to keep leaks from coming through. 

If you are expecting a natural disaster, you should shut your valve off. Seal your faucets and wrap your pipes with rags to protect them from breaking. 

You should also turn off the electrical systems in your house. Unplug all appliances and remove the batteries in clocks. 

Never endanger yourself. If turning off the valve will put you at risk for poisoning or electrocution, do not do it. 

Get Out and Stay Out 

Floodwaters are a significant danger. Six inches of moving water can knock you off your feet, and one foot can drag your vehicle away. 

If your local or state government tells you to evacuate, you should do so. Gather your essential belongings, including medications and photo IDs. Get out as soon as possible. 

If you cannot leave your home, move to the upper levels. Avoid touching the water unless you must evacuate. 

When you can return to your home, you may be tempted to enter right away. You should avoid doing so since toxins can be inside. Wait until you get an all-clear from a trained professional.

Get in Touch With Others

If you sustained any sort of injury, you should get medical attention. A cut that had water inside can develop into an infection. If you're safe, call a family member to tell them you are alright. 

If you live in a rental property, call your landlord. Tell them how the water got into your property and what the exterior seems like. You should also tell them how other residents are doing. 

If you own your home, call your insurer. Tell them what happened and where you think the damage might be. 

Your insurer may want to send an inspector before they give you compensation. Wait for them before heading inside if your insurer decides on this. 

Document the Damage 

Take photographs of absolutely everything. The more proof you have of damage, the more insurance compensation you can receive. 

Photograph the exterior of your property, including doors and windows. If you have a garden or shed that got damaged, take photos of that as well. 

Move through your house room by room. Take a look at the far corners and the bottoms of your walls. 

Proceed into your basement with caution. Wear personal protective equipment, including a respirator that filters out airborne substances. If you see mold or animals, stay away. 

In addition to photographs, create written lists of everything that is damaged. Provide detailed descriptions of each item to increase your chances of getting a replacement. 

Photos of damaged rooms are especially effective if you have photos from before the flood. Take photographs of anything you've bought that is valuable, like television sets. Keep receipts in a waterproof container that you store in your attic. 

Cleaning up After a Flood

You should call a service when you encounter any flood damage. Flood damage has several hidden dangers that are hard to detect. Water strains foundations, which you may not notice until you put weight on them. 

Once your insurer is done looking at your home, contact professionals near you. After a major emergency, there will be a lot of people calling them. Be patient and try to assess the damage on your own. 

You can help in a few ways. Remove possessions that you think you can salvage. Keep them dry in waterproof containers. 

Air-dry your clothes and linens on clotheslines and tables. Spray them with antibacterial substances before wearing them again. 

Open doors and windows to allow air to circulate. Make sure that this does not allow bacteria or mold to spread. If the doors or windows are broken, place boards over them to keep animals from entering. 

Use a sump pump to remove standing water. If you have small pools, you can use buckets, but be careful. Wear gloves and boots and make sure you can carry the water out by hand. 

Know What to Do After a Flood 

Now you should understand what to do after a flood. If you're able to, turn off the water valve. Shut off electricity to prevent electrocutions. 

Evacuate before any major natural disaster. Stay out of your home until you get clearance from someone. Also, call your family, then contact your landlord and insurer. 

Take photographs of damaged objects and call a service that will clean up mold and repair your foundations. Keep things dry until you can go back inside. 

Don't wait around to get help. SERVPRO of Central Tallahassee has more than 50 years of experience in managing flood damage. Contact us today.

What Are the Different Causes of House Fires?

5/28/2021 (Permalink)

man extinguishing fire in oven fire damage inside Tallahassee kitchen

What Are the Different Causes of House Fires?

There are several common causes of house fires. Our informative guide right here has the key things you need to understand.

In 2019, there were 1,291,500 fires alone. With so many fires occurring each year, it's no wonder you're here to find out what the most common causes of fire are.

The first step to preventing and preparing yourself for an emergency is to educate yourself about what house fire causes there are. Continue reading on to find out everything you need to know.

Cooking In the Kitchen

Many of us have found ourselves in a situation where we're cooking and then become distracted by the tv or a child running around. Unfortunately, for some people, the moment of distraction is enough to cause a fire to happen.

When you're in the kitchen cooking, you need to devote all your attention to what you're doing. Once you're done cooking your meal, you need to take the time to make sure that all appliances have been turned off and moved so that they can't be knocked over.

Turning off the kitchen appliances will also protect you and others when they come into the kitchen to do dishes or move the pots and pans from their original location.

Frayed Electrical Cords

It's important that once your electrical appliances that have cords become frayed, you either replace them or replace the appliance. The reason for this is frayed cords can cause sparks to fly, leading to an electrical fire.

It would help if you took some time to check your cords every now and then to ensure that there is nothing left lying around that can start a house fire. Another aspect that should be considered when it comes to electrical cords is faulty wiring.

You might not know that your home has faulty or old wiring, but there are some signs that you might notice from time to time. If one appliance doesn't work as efficiently when running another appliance, that might be a sign of faulty wiring.

Another sign of faulty wiring is a fuse blowing or shorting out when you turn it on or use it.

Smoking In the Home

14 out of every 100 people in the world smoke cigarettes. The issue with smoking cigarettes is everyone doesn't always put the cigarette out completely before leaving a room.

Cigarettes that aren't put out completely can easily start a fire. The way this happens is the lit ash could fall on furniture, clothing, or other flammable materials nearby, sparking a flame. 

A fire caused by a cigarette butt is responsible for upwards of 25% of fatalities caused by house fires each year. 

Candles

Candles make your home smell like the inside of a bakery or fresh linen, but were you aware that they can cause fires as well. Sometimes people:

  • Place the candle close to flammable objects
  • Leave candles burning too long
  • Leave the home without blowing the candle out

We aren't saying that you have to stop lighting your candles, but you need to ensure that they aren't near objects that can be caught on fire when you're using them. You also need to take time to blow the candles out when you're about to leave home.

If a candle catches fire in your home, it can cause quick and significant fire damage.

Small Children

Children are very curious about everything from the way the sink works to what causes the bright orange flame on top of a candle. Another common house fire cause is small children being curious.

This could mean the child accidentally turns over a candle that is lit or plays with some matches. The best way to minimize the risk of a fire starting in your home is to keep things that can light a fire or are lit out of reach of children.

You should always teach your children the importance of not touching things that are lit or playing with matches and lighters.

How to Prevent Fires in Your Home

The first thing you need to do to prevent a fire in your home is to prepare yourself and your family in case of an emergency. When your family knows the plan in place, it can help protect everyone and ensure that everyone knows what action to take should the fire happen.

Another way to take necessary steps to prevent fires is to check the smoke detectors in your home regularly. Your smoke detectors will be the first thing to alert you if there is smoke or other danger in your home that you're not aware of.

If the smoke detectors start blinking, that's a sign that you need to take some time to change the batteries. There are several other things that you can do to prevent a fire, but we've mentioned those things above.

You also need to take the time to keep your pets in areas where they can't come in contact with flammable objects or accidentally knock them over while playing.

Top Causes of House Fires

There are several causes of house fires that you might not have known about. Some of the most obvious causes of fires is the curious nature of small children as well as faulty wiring in your home that you might not have been aware of.

If you recently experienced a fire in your home and there was damage caused, the next thing you need to do is find someone to help with the damage that occurred. If you're ready to take that step, contact SERVPRO of Central Tennessee.

Not only do we specialize in fire damage, but we also can provide assistance when it comes to storm and water damage.

These Are the Common Causes of House Floods

5/28/2021 (Permalink)

man on sofa in flood flood damage clean up inside home

These Are the Common Causes of House Floods

If your home is flooded, it can cause a huge amount of damage and danger. 

Water has the power to destroy your belongings and the structure of your home. Repairs can be extensive, taking a lot of time and money. 

House floods can be caused by many different things. Keep reading to find out what to look out for, and help avoid home flooding. 

Broken Pipes 

There are pipes throughout your entire home. They move a huge amount of water, very quickly, at all times.

That is why a broken pipe can cause major flooding. Water is extremely powerful and will continue to gush out, sending a huge amount of water into your home within a matter of minutes. This can cause severe damage incredibly quickly. 

There are many reasons why a pipe can break. It may be that pipes have areas of damage, weakness, or erosion. Changes in water pressure and temperature can also put increased pressure on the pipes. 

What starts as a minor or insignificant lead can quickly become something much more serious. That’s why it’s important to be cautious. 

Regularly check the state of your home’s water pipes. Fix any leaky pipes as soon as possible. It’s also useful to know where your home’s main water valve is. That way, you can quickly shut off the water in an emergency. 

If you do suffer from a flooded home, contact professionals immediately. We can repair and restore your home after water damage. 

Poor Drainage 

Sometimes the water in your sink, toilet, bath, or shower can drain away slowly. This is usually caused by a blockage in your drain. They are most common in kitchens and bathrooms, where a lot of debris and other materials can collect.  

It can seem inconvenient, but can quickly become a lot more serious. There is the potential for the drain to become entirely blocked. 

In this situation, water will stop draining away. Your sink, toilet, bath, or shower can start to overflow, causing a serious house flood. This has the power to destroy your home. 

If water is slow to drain away in your home, be proactive. Contact a professional and remove any blockages before they cause a flood.   

Blocked Rain Gutters 

Your rain gutters are designed to transport excess water away from your home. This helps to protect your home from flooding and damage. 

However, rain gutters can quickly become blocked. This is often the case after heavy rainfall when dirt and debris from your roof are washed down into the gutters. 

If heavy rains continue, and your gutters are blocked, then they will overflow. This can become a dangerous and damaging situation. It increases the risk of flooding in your home. 

That’s why it’s best to be proactive. Regularly clean your gutters, and prevent a flooded house.  

Damaged Foundations

The foundation of your home is always resting on the ground. That’s why, when it is built, it needs to be properly waterproof and sealed. This means it is protected from flooding or damage by water on the ground. 

However, foundations can be damaged with cracks or other flaws. This can allow water to damage the structure of your home and can lead to severe flooding.   

To prevent flooding, check that your home’s foundations are sound. If they are faulty, then invest in foundation repair. It will be less expensive than trying to salvage your home after a flood in the future. 

If you have a basement, it’s also important to make sure that your tiles are sealed properly. This will stop water seeping through after heavy rainfall. 

Faulty Appliances 

Flooding can also be caused by faulty appliances within your home. Appliances that can cause major damage to your home include washing machines, dishwashers, water heaters, and air conditioners. If these appliances or their connections malfunction, they can quickly cause a flooded home. 

Inspect these appliances regularly. Make sure that there are no issues with them or the water supply. 

If you do notice a problem, get it fixed or replaced straight away. This will prevent a more serious problem from developing. 

If not, your home and possessions can be damaged and destroyed by flooding. Contact us as quickly as possible, and we can help to restore your belongings

Accidents or Forgetfulness 

We are all human, and we all make mistakes. Sometimes flooding can be caused by simple forgetfulness. 

One of the most common examples is when you’re running a bath. You might start, but forget or get distracted. The bath can quickly start to overflow. This can easily lead to major flooding in your home. 

If you’re using water in your home, try not to multitask or get distracted. That’s the best way to prevent accidental flooding in your home. 

Extreme Weather 

Of course, we don’t have much control over the weather. Heavy rain, storms, hurricanes, and snow can cause flooding in your home. 

In these cases, pay attention to weather forecasts and prepare as needed. Have an emergency weather plan in place, and an efficient pump that you can use if flooding begins.  

This is why it’s also important to maintain the structure of your home. Repair any small cracks or damage as soon as you can. Otherwise, they may encourage flooding during any extreme weather. 

If your home is damaged by extreme weather, it’s important to act quickly to recover your home and belongings. We can make a disaster in your home seem "Like it never even happened."   

Common Causes of House Floods 

House floods can cause a huge amount of danger and destruction. They can be caused by many different things. 

By following this guide, you can reduce the risk of flooding in your home. This will help keep you, your loved ones, and your belongings safe. 

Want to know more? Contact us now, and we can help you keep your home and belongings safe from house flooding. 

9 Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Restoration Company

5/28/2021 (Permalink)

ladder with construction hat on it water damage restoration company in Tallahassee

9 Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Restoration Company

You never know when a natural disaster might strike. In fact, about 15 million US homes are at risk of flooding.

It's important to call a restoration company as soon as possible. Otherwise, sitting water can lead to mold and mildew growth. The value of your home could continue to decline as a result.

Meanwhile, mold spores in the air could put your family's health at risk.

Don't risk it! Instead, keep reading to discover the nine questions you should ask a restoration company. With these tips, you can narrow down your options.

You'll have peace of mind knowing you've chosen a company you can trust.

Read on to start your search today!

1. How Long Have You Operated?

There are over 55,352 damage restoration companies in the US. These businesses employ over 113,191 professionals.

If you want to narrow down your options, look for a business that's operated in the area for at least a few years. Ask the owners how long they've worked in the industry, too.

It's important to look for restoration companies with years of experience in the industry. After all, people learn from hands-on experience. Finding an experienced team will give you peace of mind in their abilities.

A company that's operated in the area for at least 10 years has likely outlasted competition in the region. It's also likely that they've won the respect of their clients. A company with a strong professional reputation will have an easier time finding clients. 

These businesses have likely worked out the kinks in their operations as well.

Choosing an inexperienced business, on the other hand, could do more harm than good. There's a chance they're still working out the kinks in their operations.

Instead, choose a company with a well-trained team. You'll feel more comfortable knowing they have the hands-on experience necessary for the job. They can leverage that experience when providing their restoration services. 

2. Are You Licensed, Insured, and Bonded?

Most states in the US require restoration companies and contractors to have proper licensing. If a legal issue arises, you can handle the dispute with the company.

Make sure each restoration company on your list is licensed to practice in the area. Ask for proof that their license is up-to-date, too.

You should also look for restoration companies that are bonded. Bonded companies have insurance. If the company doesn't do its job, you'll have protection.

The bond can provide liability protection and compensation in case of an accident.

The company should have worker's compensation, too. If someone is injured on the job, they won't hold you liable. 

3. Are You Available 24/7?

As you research local restoration companies, ask about their business hours.

You don't want to wake up to an emergency in the middle of the night, only to find everyone's closed. Instead, choose a company that's open 24/7. You'll have peace of mind knowing you can call any time.

It's important to make sure you receive restoration services as soon as possible. Otherwise, additional damage can occur. 

4. Is Every Member of Your Team Certified?

Determine who will end up working on your home. Is each technician certified and experienced?

Look for technicians that have an Institute of Inspection, Cleaning, and Restoration Certificate. This certificate indicates they have the proper training and education for the job. 

Take the time to consider what type of restoration each company specializes in, too. For example, do you fire restoration rather than water restoration services? What about storm damage services?

Ask for technicians that have years of experience in that specialty.

5. Do You Have a Local Office?

Google "restoration company near me" and explore your options. Try to find a restoration company that's local.

Some companies will charge you if they have to travel long distances. Otherwise, it could take a while before the technicians can reach your home. Remember, you'll want a company that can respond quickly. 

Other companies follow disasters. They'll pretend they work in the area. If they don't do a satisfactory job, you might find they've already disappeared.

Instead, find a local business you can trust. 

6. Can You Provide References?

Every restoration company you call will try to convince you that they're the best in the business. You don't have to take their word for it. Instead, ask them for references and reviews.

You can find reviews on the company's Better Business Bureau and Google My Business listing.

Otherwise, talk with some of their recent customers. Ask about their experience. Did they have any issues working with the restoration team?

If so, you can cross that company off your list. 

7. What is Your Process Like?

Take the time to learn more about each company's process, too. 

Some companies will only dry out your property or clean after a fire. However, you might need a company that offers reconstruction, too.

Learn more about the company's process and services to determine if they offer the restoration services you need. 

8. Will You Work With My Insurance Company?

Water and fire damage can get costly. Look for a restoration company that will work with your insurance company. They could help ensure the process is as painless as possible.

9. Do You Have a Guarantee?

Don't rush to choose a restoration team yet. First, make sure to ask each company on your list for a quote. Get quotes from at least three local businesses.

Ask for a copy of their contract as well. What's included? Are there any hidden fees you need to worry about?

Ask each company how long the restoration process will take as well.

Then, make sure each company offers a guarantee or warranty. What if you're not satisfied with their services? Can you call them back?

If the company doesn't offer a guarantee, costs could start to stack up each time you call them back.

The Best in the Business: 9 Questions to Ask Before Choosing a Restoration Company

Don't rush to hire the first restoration company you find online. Instead, ask these questions to narrow down your options. Asking these questions will help you find the most qualified team around. 

Searching for a fire and water restoration team in Tallahassee? We're here to help.

Contact us today to get started. 

How to Prevent Mold From Growing inside your Business

5/28/2021 (Permalink)

woman sees mold on a wall mold damage inside Tallahassee business

How to Prevent Mold From Growing in Your Home

Are you trying to figure out how to prevent mold in your home? If yes, you should click here to learn more about what to do.

Coming home to learn there's mold growing in your home is most likely the last thing you want to do. Although molds are common in homes and come in a variety of forms, no one wants to fight the war against mold. If not treated immediately, mold can begin to spread and grow thicker, causing more problems. 

Because of this, we want to catch mold in its early stages and then learn how to prevent mold from coming back. Preventing mold from growing inside the house will not only keep your home healthy, but it'll keep you and your family healthy as well. 

For some of the best mold prevention tips, continue reading below. Here's everything you need to know about preventing mold from growing inside your home. 

Lower Humidity Levels

Mold thrives in humid environments. If your home has high humidity levels, then it's an ideal place for mold to grow. The best thing to do is check the humidity levels in your home first. 

If they're high, then be sure to lower them when possible. You can use a dehumidifier to help lower the levels, but there are some other things you can do around the house as well. Having good airflow will help lower the levels.

To increase airflow, you can open your windows, keep the fans on, and use your exhaust fans when taking a shower. Be sure to check by your windows, in the HVAC unit closet, and in the laundry room for any signs of moisture or condensation. If you see condensation building, then use some of these tips to correct the issue. 

Fix Leaks (Even the Small Ones)

Any leaks in the home should be fixed immediately. Even if it's a small leak that doesn't have much of an impact on your water bill or daily life, fix it. Even the smallest of leaks can cause mold to grow and spread. 

Check for leaks in your home on a weekly basis. Check all faucets, under your sinks, around the toilets, and in the laundry room and HVAC closet. If you find a leak, have a professional address the issue to ensure it's corrected and won't leak again. 

After the leak's fixed, be sure to keep checking that area for a few weeks after for any signs of mold. 

Attend to Wet/Damp Areas ASAP

Spills happen in the home. This is normal. When a spill does happen, however, you'll want to clean it up as soon as you can. Allowing spills to remain in the carpet, on the walls, or anywhere else will also permit mold to grow. 

Try to have the area fully dried within 48 hours. If the spill took place on a piece of furniture or fabric that can't be dried quickly, then be sure to place it outside in the sun for faster drying. You should also avoid leaving any damp or wet clothing around the house.

Another good tip is to dry your shower after each use. You can use a towel to quickly wipe the walls down. You might also want to leave your shower curtain open until it's dried completely. 

Invest in Mold-Resistant Products

There are now mold-resistant products you can use when either building a new home or renovating an old one. These products can help reduce your risk of mold in the home. For example, there's mold-resistant Sheetrock, drywall, and paint! 

If you notice you have a reoccurring issue with mold, then it could be a good idea to have some of these items switched out in your home. Although you'll pay a cost to have it done, you may save later down the road by not having to remove mold from your walls or ceiling. 

Clean/Repair Roof and Gutters

A home situated on land that's not properly slanted to ensure water runs away from the foundation could have water issues in the basement or foundation. Make corrections to direct water away from your home. You can also clean and repair your roof and gutters on a regular basis to prevent water issues and clogs.

If the gutters are filled with debris and a clog forms, then water may begin to weigh down on both the roof and gutters. Eventually, this could cause a leak. Keeping the roof and gutters clean will reduce this risk. 

You should also have them inspected for damages on a regular basis. 

Declutter, Wipe Down, and Vacuum

Sometimes, mold will grow in places you can't see. This could be behind walls and ceilings, but it could also be behind other hidden areas in the home. To properly check for mold, declutter, wipe down surfaces, and vacuum each room. 

Mold spores can grow in the carpet and go unnoticed for a period of time. After vacuuming, dump the container and remove the contents of the vacuum from your home. 

You Can Learn How to Prevent Mold Today

Finding mold in your home is less than ideal. Unfortunately, it's more common than you think. If you find mold in your home, then be sure to contact a professional mold remediation service. 

Once you've corrected the issue, be sure to use these tips on how to prevent mold from growing in the home and stop the mold from coming back.

SERVPRO of Central Tallahassee can help you win the war against mold in your home. Contact us today to see how we can help you.

What to Do After Your Tallahassee Home Has Water Damage

5/28/2021 (Permalink)

wall in shower with water damage Tallahassee bathroom water damage emergency

Whether the water damage you experience in your home is mild or severe, it's a huge struggle to overcome. There are a lot of steps to take and calls to make — you'll definitely want to take a break.

There is a way to make it easier on yourself, though, and that's by having a plan. Knowing everything you have to do can make the entire process less overwhelming, and it can save you a lot of time in the long run.

So, what should you do after your home suffers from water damage? Read on to find out.

1. Call Your Insurance Company

You should call your insurance company within 24 hours of noticing the damage. While coverage is going to depend on your policy, the insurance company will be able to send an adjuster out to your home.

The adjuster will assess the damage to your home and determine if it's covered under your policy.

Before they arrive, take pictures and document the value of any and everything. This should be done before, during, and after the cleanup of your home.

2. Practice Safety

Next, you're going to want to make sure the space is safe to move about before you walk into it.

This means shutting off the power and putting on protective gear. You'll also want to remove rugs, furniture, or any other wet items that can cause damage to your home.

3. Call a Professional

To make sure your home is cleaned quickly and efficiently, it's best to call in a water damage expert. Likewise, depending on the area of your home that's damaged, you may need to call an electrician, plumber, and other household professionals.

Sometimes, flooring, drywall, and even insulation may have to be removed in order to prevent mold and mildew. Not only will this ensure the cleanliness of your home, but also the safety of everyone living in it.

It's best to have them handle it so you can ensure that everything is done properly.

4. Dry Everything Out

Once your home has been cleared for re-entry, there may be some water that lingers — especially if you live in a humid climate. It's best to clear out wet belongings and sort through them as soon as you can access them.

For airflow, box or floor fans can help circulation in the room. Having plenty of towels to place items on is also essential.

Remember These Steps to Take After Water Damage

When you remember these steps to take after water damage, you allow yourself to ease through the process. The less you stress, the easier it's going to be on not only you but those in your home.

Having professionals you can count on to fix the problem is a great way to ease your stress too.

At SERVPRO of Central Tallahassee, we do exactly that. Contact us today to get started today.