Addressing the Smoke Smell in Your Home After a Fire
When you experience a house fire, the damage can be devastating. Beyond the charred materials from flames is the lingering smell of smoke. Smoke damage can often be one of the most widespread effects to contend with in your home after a fire. While there are other concerns to address after a fire often take precedent for restorations and mitigations, restoring damage to your property should include addressing the smoke to get your home back to normal.
Much of the cleanup and restoration after a fire in your Phoenix home focuses on cleaning and fire smoke odor removal. Indoor air quality is also a primary focus for our SERVPRO® professionals once the first responders have left. We work quickly to establish our purification equipment such as air scrubbers and hydroxyl generators to run the available air through HEPA filters over time to begin pulling smoke particles and soot from the environment and reducing hazards or risks of exposure without respirators.
How we address smoke damage
Smoke damage often depends on the type of smoke that impacted your home during the fire. Dry smoke results from high heat but is also a residue that is much easier for technicians to clean with dry and wet sponges on the coated surfaces. Wet smoke leaves a thick residue on surfaces and contents, which often requires specialized equipment to clean and deodorize fully. This kind of smoke damage is definitely best left to the experts! The heat generated by a fire impacts the actual penetration of soot particles into porous materials like drywall and fabrics.
Getting rid of the lingering smell of smoke
Improving the odors in your home after a fire is also a concern for our team, but these steps often follow reconstruction and other restoration efforts. Waiting for deodorization allows our technicians to leave your home completely cleaned and odor-free. Our thermal foggers can often do the greatest amount of deodorization, as these machines are suitable to use in open areas, fabrics, soft materials, and work to remove odors from surfaces as well. We work hard to completely address fire and smoke damage, from cleaning to restoration, and finally addressing ongoing odors of smoke.
If you experience a fire, our team can arrive quickly to help lessen the damage and prolonged impact of a fire emergency, and work to eliminate the presence of smoke damage. Our SERVPRO of Phoenix rapid response team has the expertise and tools to help. Give us a call today at (480) 503-2090 24/7 if you experience a fire in your home. We are here to help!
How SERVPRO’s ERP Can Help Your Business If You Experience Damage
Since its implementation, the SERVPRO ERP (Emergency Ready Plan) system has allowed SERVPRO to respond faster and more effectively to hundreds of business calls nationwide and has saved business owners thousands of dollars in restoration costs. Learn more about SERVPRO’s ERP and how ERP can help your business if you experience damage.
What is the SERVPRO ERP?
SERVPRO’s ERP is a system that helps businesses create a readiness profile for all of their locations to be prepared for any disaster. The ERP helps business owners create an Emergency READY Profile (ERP) for their facility, at no charge. The business owner works with SERVPRO to gather and document information that will become critical if a disaster strikes. It allows business owners to create customized, pre-organized profiles of their properties and locations so that in case of a disaster, we have access to any relevant documents and information immediately Once the ERP is created, business owners have access to their information 24/7 online and by using SERVPRO’s free smartphone app, creating a comprehensive emergency plan for the business. A comprehensive emergency plan contains critical information about the location of shut-off valves, fire suppression system controls, emergency contact numbers and more—information that can save emergency responders precious time and help contain damage and minimize injury.
The SERVPRO ERP Creates Faster Responses
With a profile in the ERP system, we can respond to your business emergency faster much quicker than if you had contacted us by phone. The system allows your call to be simplified to the press of a button, saving valuable time otherwise spent searching for phone numbers, relevant documents, and communicating the situation to us. Whether your emergency is water, fire or flooding, the ERP gets us out to your business faster, which can help minimize damage with faster reaction to the emergency.
Our ERP Priority Response
Some events, such as flash flooding, may hit many buildings and neighborhoods at once. This can cause resources to get tied up quickly, and we may have to delay our response to some inquiries. With the ERP system, you can avoid having to contact a representative and get your request in before others around you. The ERP app gives you priority response to any damage emergency you have. We’re dispatched faster to your location to start handling your issue right away.
More Effective Responses with Prior Knowledge
Having critical information such as breaker locations, water lines placement, floor plans, and inventories allow our IIRC trained technicians to do their work with unmatched efficiency. By giving us a wealth of information ahead of time, businesses help to ensure that any SERVPRO teams working on your business can better understand what they are working with and the job they are doing, without wasting precious time locations breaker boxes, lines, etc.
Multi-Location Management Damage Control
Many companies operate multiple locations, some of which may be damaged in an event while others remain unscathed or encounter different problems, depending on the situation. The SERVPRO ERP system allows businesses to create separate profiles for each business location, eliminating confusion and ensuring that more severely damaged locations are treated first.
Damage of any kind can impact a business. SERVPRO of Phoenix is ready to respond to your company's needs 24/7. If water, storm, flood, or fire damage has impacted one or more of your locations, or if you would like to learn more about our ERP system, call us at (480) 503-2090.
Why SERVPRO? The Difference is in Our People
When it comes to disaster recovery, we may not be the only game in town, but there’s a reason why so many homeowners and businesses choose SERVPRO to recover from water, fire, mold, or flood damage. The difference is our people!
We invest in our employees
SERVPRO invests in having the best employees in the business. We have always put a high priority on educating our team. That need is more important than ever today. SERVPRO is an IICRC certified firm with certified technicians, which means customers can expect the very highest in standards and protocol to be used in their home or business when disaster strikes.
IICRC training and certification
The Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) certifies and sets the standards for the cleaning and restoration industries and those standards are high. Our SERVPRO professionals study IICRC standards and best practices in water restoration, fire restoration, mold remediation, carpet and upholstery cleaning, and other cleaning and restoration courses so they are well-prepared to handle any disaster in any situation and know how to approach the restoration process quickly and effectively.
Employee certification training
The Employee Certification Training by SERVPRO is a voluntary, self-paced program designed for SERVPRO franchise employees to further their knowledge and training. Certification is awarded after successful completion of course materials and an examination. Modules for training include:
- Crew Training
- Fire Restoration
- Water Restoration
- Advanced Structural Drying
Ongoing, comprehensive training for our crew
Our training program doesn’t stop at just IICRC and Employee Certification Training. We also offer:
- Initial Franchise Training
- Continuing Education Classes
From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s Corporate Training Facility to regular IICRC industry certifications, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property. If your property suffers water, flood, storm, fire, or mold damage, know that you’re in great hands with the professional SERVPRO team. Our employees make the difference! Contact us 24/7 for restoration assistance at 480-503-2090.
How to Find and Address Mold in Your Home
A mold infestation can grow in any room of a house, including bathrooms, kitchens, and living rooms. It usually appears as a series of splotches or streaks across walls and ceilings but can sometimes be hidden behind walls or underneath cabinets. In many cases, there will also be a musty odor that is the first telltale sign to a homeowner there may be a problem. Once you realize you have mold, it’s important to find the cause of mold in your home and address it.
How mold can damage your home
Mold damage is not just a visual or cosmetic problem. It also causes permanent damage to materials such as drywall, furniture, and whatever else it comes in contact with. It can lead to permanent staining or even deterioration of materials. Knowing how to combat the damage and prevent further problems requires a company trained in remediation and restoration of mold in the structure and personal property. SERVPRO mold remediation technicians have extensive experience and training to help homeowners suffering from mold damage.
How SERVPRO finds and addresses mold
When addressing mold damage, the first task is to control the mold at its source. We set up containment around the affected area using heavy plastic sheeting to cover entrances and exit, sealing the vents to prevent mold from spreading through the ductwork. Technicians may also set up special machines to reduce the number of airborne spores while they remove mold from the affected area.
Next, we remove the contamination in the home. Any structural or personal property item that cannot be cleaned is disposed of. Homeowners are alerted when this is necessary. Before moving any compromised item out of the contained area, our technicians clean it using vacuums with HEPA filters, dry wiping with sponges or cloths, and using anti-fungal and anti-microbial cleaning agents, all to prevent further spread.
After the mold is gone
Once the mold is removed, we lower the moisture levels of the area back to normal by using air movers and exhaust fans to replace the damp air inside the affected area with drier air from outside the structure. Technicians also place dehumidifiers to draw moisture from the air. This and other steps are all a part of our specific mold removal process followed by all SERVPRO technicians to ensure the issue is resolved.
Removing mold and restoring your home is not a simple process and should therefore be left to the pros to address. SERVPRO of Phoenix is ready to help you if you suffer from mold damage. If you need our services or just suspect you have a mold problem, call us at (480) 503-2090 today. We’re available 24/7 to assist you.
Stages of Water Damage Repair for Your Home or Business
If you experience water damage in your home or business, you will likely need to have water restoration done. What this entails can vary depending on the severity of the damage, but the general process remains the same. While your house is being worked on, you can expect a restoration company like SERVPRO of Phoenix to follow these fire restoration stages.
Inspection of the water damage
Before restoration can begin, the property will need to be inspected to understand the extent of the damage and how to address it. Skilled water restoration technicians will look at each area of your home or business to determine the extent of the damage done by the water, whether it was from a storm or other flood in your building. This allows them to determine the best way to move forward with their work and create a water damage repair plan.
Mitigation against further damage
Once the inspection has been completed, SERVPRO technicians will move on to mitigation. This step is essential to prevent the damage from getting worse. Unfortunately, many people miss this step and end up making matters worse by not preventing further damage from happening. For example, if there are holes in the walls from water seeping through or issues with the roofing or broken windows, these will need to be boarded up or covered with a tarp to keep the area safe and prevent further damage. Water damage will be removed as well, with each object treated based on what it’s made of. It will also include removing excess water and drying the building to prevent mold or mildew growth. Unpleasant odors will be removed as well. By identifying the odor's cause and determining the conditions where it contacts surfaces, the odor can often be removed over time without a trace, such as mold or mildew that has already started to grow.
Restoration of your home or business
After damage cleaning is complete, the final stage, water damage repair, and restoration can begin. During the restoration, SERVPRO technicians will begin to return your home to its previous condition, endeavoring to make it "Like it never even happened." In the case of severe damage, this can include rebuilding walls, roofing, or even whole rooms. SERVPRO offers a variety of building services to address this. Smaller tasks, such as replacing carpets and repainting walls, will be done as well. All repairs will be covered with the home or business owner before starting. Once this stage has been finished, your house or business should look as good as it did before the water damage occurred!
Whether the water or flood damage was large or small, water damage restoration is a necessary part of returning your home or business to normal. A water damage remediation company like SERVPRO of Phoenix has the equipment and professional training necessary to do this quickly and thoroughly. We will be able to repair your home and can salvage many of your damaged belongings as well. If you’ve experienced any kind of water or flood damage, contact SERVPRO 24/7 at 480-503-2090.
Work with Professionals to Help Restore Items After a Fire
During a fire, combustion, which is in the process of a solid turning into a gas by applying heat, takes place. Smoke is created by materials that do not burn completely. When fire burns, smoke can travel all over the structure, causing a variety of problems. A large part of mitigating fire damage in Phoenix is dealing with smoke-related issues once the flames have been extinguished. When a blaze takes place, materials all over the home can get coated in soot residue, and foul odors can get left behind.
Restoring items after smoke damage
When restoring a house damaged by smoke, our SERVPRO technicians inspect the structure to figure out which areas got affected. We then determine which cleaning methods to use based on how concentrated the soot is, the type of residue present on items and the kind of materials were affected. If the soot is heavily concentrated, it can be challenging to clean, whereas light residues can be wiped off easily. Having a professional assess damage is critical to fire remediation, and smoke damage clean up.
Types of smoke that cause damage
A fire creates different kinds of smoke throughout its duration based on the materials it burns, the speed of combustion, and the amount of oxygen present. When synthetic materials burn, they create soot that clings to surfaces, whereas residues resulting from natural substances such as wood cause let soot to adhere, though still difficult to clean. Fires that burn slow and lack oxygen produce a wet smoke that can be extremely difficult to remove compared to quick-burning fires that create a dry smoke. Our trained technicians know how to assess the type of smoke caused by the fire and how to address it.
Types of material surfaces
The type of materials surfaces are made of also affects how easily soot residues can be cleaned. Non-porous materials such as plastic and metal deter moisture well, making them easy for SERVPRO technicians to clean using damp, water-based chemicals. Non-porous materials such as softwood and upholstery absorb soot residues better and can penetrate deep into the material. Water-based chemicals can soak the soot deeper into the material, causing them to get ruined. Dry cleaning methods such as wiping with a dry sponge prove to work better in removing soot from porous substances. This is why various methods are available to use when dealing with multiple types of soot residues that affected different kinds of materials. There are different types of cleaning chemicals, as well as application methods that are designed specifically for dealing with certain situations.
A fire can be damaging, not only by the flames but the residual smoke and soot left behind. If you suffer a fire in your home or business and need help removing smoke residues and soils, call SERVPRO of Phoenix at (480) 503-2090 24 hours a day. Our trained technicians will help you recover from this disaster as quickly as possible.
Monsoon Storm Damage Can Take Homeowners by Surprise
We’ve had a mild monsoon season, but we aren’t out of the woods just yet. When you think of all of the disasters that could impact your Phoenix home, many homeowners might not consider flooding, but a significant storm can cause damage, especially during monsoon season. Having the right plan in place could be the difference between irreparable damage and a much faster restoration process.
What to do if you experience a flood in your home
When a storm causes flood damages to your home, you want to ensure that you have the effects of storm damage remedied as quickly as possible. With the damaging effects that standing water can have on your home, fast reaction time at the first sign of a flood could save you money and heartache. Our SERVPRO professionals are available 24/7 for any water emergency that you might have. It’s imperative to call in the professionals as soon as storm damage occurs.
What happens once SERVPRO arrives
Once our water remediation professionals arrive at your home, our priority is first to determine the vulnerable point in your home that allowed for water penetration to occur and repair this damage to prevent further exposure to these external elements. This may include a leaky roof, old window casings, high water flooding through the door, or other issues caused by the storm. Once this process gets completed, we assess the full scope of the damage and formulate a plan to start restoring your home as thoroughly and efficiently as possible.
Getting the water out of your home
This process almost always requires water extraction. If there is a significant amount of water present, a truck-mounted pump from our SERVPRO fleet might get dispatched to the site to expedite the process. Drying follows this process, and once this has gotten accomplished, our team can identify any structural weaknesses or further damage that requires additional attention. The key is getting the water out quickly to keep damage to a minimum in the first place.
SERVPRO of Phoenix can help with storm damage
Storm damage to your home might not be the first thing that you think of in Arizona, but it happens more often than you might think with our strong monsoons. If your home experiences storm damage, you can trust in the experience and professionalism of SERVPRO of Phoenix to help you clean up the mess and work to get your home back to the way it used to be. Give us a call anytime at (480) 503-2090. We’re here to help!
Smoke from a House Fire Can Cause Significant Damage
A house fire can be devastating. Fire can cause structural and cosmetic damage that takes a long time to restore. What many people don’t realize is that aside from the flames, one of the most significant factors causing extensive damage from a house fire is the smoke and soot during a fire and after the flames have been extinguished.
The smoke residue adheres to the surfaces of your home and causes discoloration and possibly structural damage. Understanding the behavior of smoke during a fire can help you understand the restoration process better and how SERVPRO can help. Different types of smoke cause different types of damage and need to be treated differently. Wet smoke, such as occurs with plastics, can leave items sticky, while dry smoke, such as wood or paper, can leave ash and powdery residue. Unfortunately, there is also damage done from trying to extinguish flames, such as fire extinguisher residue that requires a different type of cleaning. Working with fire damage restoration experts make all the difference in how well the home is restored after fire damage occurs.
The temperature of the smoke during a fire
The temperature of the smoke itself and the temperature of the surrounding surfaces affect the extent of the fire damage in Phoenix. Smoke rises away from the fire and is carried to different places by a process known as convection. Fire produces heat, and as a result, the air above the fire becomes hot, expands, and becomes lighter. The lighter air moves up, and its place is taken by the denser cold air. The process generates air currents called “convection currents”. It is due to these currents that the smoke rises. As the temperature of the air increases, the pressure it wields against the surfaces increases as well. What it means is that hotter fires produce a hotter smoke that is forced against the surfaces. The smoke particles in such fires can go deep into the surface pores and cause substantial damage. SERVPRO professionals understand the nature of smoke and design strategies accordingly.
The temperature of home surfaces
As hot smoke from a fire migrates to colder surfaces in a home such as outside walls, closets, and unheated rooms, these areas are damaged the most. It can be surprising to see how much smoke residue finds its way into drawers and closets, and other areas that would appear protected from such damage. SERVPRO technicians can use several techniques to clean surfaces that are heavily damaged by smoke and soot and help find other areas such as drawers and closets that also need attention.
Recovering from fire and smoke damage in your home
A fire can be a traumatizing experience, so it’s essential to seek professional help to address the damage as soon as you can. Trained technicians have a better chance of successfully restoring your home if they can get to work before the damage becomes permanent, so don’t hesitate if you experience a fire in your home. Call SERVPRO of Phoenix at (480) 503-2090 today to speak to one of our restoration experts.
Mold Damage in Your Attic and What You Should Do
Most people equate mold issues in attics to wetter parts of the country. Even though Phoenix does not receive much rain compared to other places, having a leaky roof on your house can still cause problems, even if the leak is minor. Water can get into your attic and damage structural components, often without your knowledge. Attics naturally have higher relative humidity and air temperature than the livable area of the house, creating an ideal environment for microbial growth. Learn about mold damage in your attic and what you should do.
The damage of moisture
If more moisture gets into your attic from the roof due to heavy storms or a failing roof, fungi can develop on the inside of the plywood and other materials that form the roof. If you have mold damage inside your home's attic, microbes can contaminate your ventilation system; once inside the air ducts, spores can travel throughout the home and spread the infestation. Mold growth may happen slowly but, in an attic, can go undetected and continue to grow.
What to do if damage occurs
Once mold growth is detected inside the attic, specific procedures can be taken to remediate the problem. While it may appear simple to address on your own, it’s best to contact a remediation pro to address the mold issue, stop the spread of mold spores, and start the restoration process in your attic. A mold remediation specialist like SERVPRO will address air intakes or holes that go into the living area, sealing them off with plastic to prevent spread. Plastic is put on the bottom part of the trusses to prevent dust from contaminating the ceiling insulation. The access doors get sealed with plastic, and a zipper is installed to allow entrance.
Addressing damaged materials
In most situations, the contaminated wood inside the attic can only be removed by sanding down the material's surface. Our SERVPRO technicians get equipped with full face mask respirators and personal protective gear including suits that cover their entire body for protection during the remediation process. Air scrubbers get put inside the attic to pull particles out of the air during the sanding stage.
When sanding the affected materials, our IICRC certified technicians follow approved procedures and abide by all government rules and regulations. Automatic sanders with a vacuum hose attached to them get used to sand down the wood. The vacuum helps keep dust to a minimum by sucking up the air in the work area and putting it through a HEPA filter. After sanding is complete, the HEPA vac gets used to clean up any leftover debris or dust particles. Then the attic gets sprayed down with an anti-microbial chemical to prevent future growth. In severe cases, a sealant paint gets sprayed inside the attic to inhibit fungi from developing in the future.
If you suspect mold in your attic
If you ever notice microbial contamination in your attic, call SERVPRO of Phoenix at (480) 503-2090. We are available 24/7 to help address your mold issues and restore your home to pre-infestation condition.
How Remodeling Mistakes Can Cause Water Damage to Your Home
When homes are being remodeled, there are a lot of moving parts happening, especially if the project involves multiple professionals such as plumbers, electricians, painters, etc. Even with the best intentions and most professional contractors, mistakes can happen. These remodeling mistakes can cause water damage to your home which can undermine all your remodeling efforts if it requires a substantial repair.
Plumbing mistakes during remodeling
Even the most experienced plumbing professionals make mistakes that result in water damage in unexpected places. A bathroom remodel that results in leaking or poor drainage requires another look at the plumbing renovation and restoration of damage done to your home should a leak occur. SERVPRO of Phoenix technicians can detect where the water leak is coming from as well as how to return your home to preloss condition. Water damage after a remodeling of your Phoenix bathroom is a frustrating outcome for the homeowner and the remodeling professional.
Common plumbing errors during remodeling and reconstruction
There are several errors that can happen during remodeling that can result in water damage. A decision to use a diverter spout to add a handheld shower in your bathroom causes a blowback issue resulting in water spraying inside your wall as well as through the showerhead. Even a small amount of blowback results in significant harm over time. A desire to retain the character of the original bathroom, or a desire to save a little money, drives the decision to add to existing plumbing rather than tear out and replace can cause issues. Unfortunately, the older pipes need help to connect with modern fixtures. If the connections added fail to seal and balance water pressure correctly, leakage occurs. Significant plumbing upgrades such as adding a bathtub or shower where one didn’t exist before can cause potential issues too if not done right. Slab leaks, misaligned pipes, or insufficient plumbing can all occur if a plumbing professional isn’t careful. These types of leaks often go unnoticed until significant damage occurs.
What to do if you have water damage during remodeling
If you or your contractor notice a leak, the first issue is to address the cause of the leak immediately, While the responsible plumbing contractor will likely address this, it’s a good idea to contact SERVPRO. They can find and address the leak, and then address the water damage caused by the leak to prevent further issues such as mold growth. SERVPRO can locate the problem and take steps to dry out the saturated areas. An older bathroom, for example, has a large access panel in an adjacent room, closet, or hallway that our technician can open to find the leak and then keep open to direct airflow that removes the moisture. We work with plumbing contractors to resolve the blowback problem as we dry out the area behind the bathtub and shower. We’ll follow the source of the water to discover any migrating moisture causing damage to the walls or ceilings below. SERVPRO water damage technicians still develop drying goals to ensure any leaks behind the plaster avoid secondary damage like mold growth or disintegration. Air movers and dehumidifiers do a thorough job of removing the moisture once the source of the leak is fixed. Damaged paint or staining can restore to the pre-leak condition when touched-up after drying is complete so the remodeling job can continue to move forward.
If a remodeling project takes an unexpected turn, SERVPRO of Phoenix has the staff, experience, and equipment to get things back on track. Call for an appointment at (480) 503-2090.