Dealing with Smoke Damage After a Fire
Whenever a fire of any size ignites inside a home, smoke can affect items even if they were in a different room than the blaze. That’s why extinguishing the flames after a house fire doesn’t mean your woes are over. Learn about dealing with smoke damage after a fire.
How does smoke damage happen?
During a fire, combustion takes place. Smoke is created by materials that do not burn completely. With a burn, smoke can travel all over the house causing various problems even after the fire is out. A big part of mitigating fire damage is dealing with smoke-related issues. When a blaze takes place materials all over the home get coated in soot residue, and foul odors are left behind. If central air was on during the fire, this helps move smoke throughout the whole house which exacerbates the damage.
How can SERVPRO help with smoke damage?
When restoring a house damaged by soot and smoke, our technicians inspect the home to determine which areas were affected which helps establish which cleaning methods to use based on how concentrated the soot is, the type of residue present, and the kind of materials affected. If the soot is heavily concentrated, then it can be difficult to clean, whereas light residues can be wiped off easily. Having a professional fire remediation specialist review the damage and follow a specific restoration process is critical to the success of cleanup.
Why different approaches for cleanup?
A fire creates various kinds of smoke throughout its duration based on the materials it burns, the speed of combustion and the amount of oxygen. When synthetic materials are burned, they create soot that adheres to surfaces better than residues resulting from natural substances such as wood. Fires that burn slow and lack oxygen produce wet smoke that can be extremely difficult to remove compared to quick-burning fires that create dry smoke. The type of materials surfaces are made of also affects the cleanability of soot residues. Non-porous materials such as plastic and metal repel moisture well making them easy for technicians to clean using wet, 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.
Work with a professional for the most effective smoke damage remediation
Various methods are available to use when dealing with smoke and soot. If you need assistance removing smoke residue and soot from your home after a fire, call SERVPRO of Phoenix at (480) 503-2090 24 hours a day. We’re here to help you recover quickly!
Getting the Help You Need After a Crime Occurs in Your Home
A crime of any kind that occurs in your home is stressful, to say the least. Once the police have left, there’s still a lot that a homeowner may need to deal with. The stress of dealing with criminal activity shouldn’t be worsened by having to clean up after the situation. If the occurrence resulted in substances left behind in need of disposal, it is best to engage a professional service for removal and cleanup. SERVPRO of Phoenix offers professional, compassionate, and properly trained technicians to put your home back in order after a crime has occurred.
Crime scene cleanup
More than one homeowner has had to deal with a crime scene situation in their home; whether it involves blood pathogens, drug cleanup, or even graffiti, the job can be challenging, and many people simply don’t know where to start or who to turn to. SERVPRO’s trauma and crime scene abatement team knows and follows Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regulations and rules when cleaning and restoring your house after a crime has happened.
What SERVPRO can do
If ever you need professional cleanup help, crime scene cleanup is likely at the top of the list. Biohazards like blood and dangerous and irritating chemicals suddenly infiltrate your home, and you have neither the knowledge nor the desire to deal with their cleanup and removal. Proper cleanup of such materials is imperative for safety as well as getting you home back to “Like it never even happened.” Specialized training prepares our SERVPRO crews to deal with all the debris throughout your home due to the crime itself as well as the police actions afterward. We take all precautions to manage every aspect of cleanup relating to the crime and its aftermath. Knowing what you or your family endured is our motivation to clear away every scrap of evidence of what took place in your home to help you recover from the experience. Depending on what caused the crime scene in the first place, there’s more to be dealt with well after the police leave and any potentially hazardous materials are removed. Carpets may need to be cleaned, walls may need washing, holes filled in, or even a touch-up with paint; these go a long way to restoring a sense of control and peace even after disruptive forces shatter your home. This kind of job is for a trained cleanup professional like SERVPRO of Phoenix.
Contact us to get the help you need
SERVPRO of Phoenix has trained technicians and equipment to set you and your family on the path to recovery after you experience a crime in your home. Call us at (480) 503-2090 day or night for fast, professional help from our team. We’re available 24/7 to help!
Following Fire Codes Can Protect Your Business
Fire can be devastating to businesses of any size. Recovering from a fire-related loss can put a huge strain on your business. And yet it’s common for us to see commercial building fire damages in Phoenix for a variety of reasons. It’s essential to protect your business and to do that, keeping up with the latest fire code is necessary. Be sure your business is practicing good fire prevention with these steps so you can rest easy that you’re protected.
Preventing fire by following the codes
The Phoenix fire code is updated annually. The code, based on the International Fire Code, provides fire and life safety standards for buildings, processes, and fire protection equipment installations in the City of Phoenix, so business owners should be aware of its contents and follow the recommendations. The Code is a companion code to the International Codes which were implemented by the City of Phoenix Planning and Development Department establishing the construction requirements for all development in the City of Phoenix. Unfortunately, many owners of commercial property are unaware of these frequent updates and fail to update the fire prevention system they have in place when these updates occur. It’s important to stay informed and in code for your safety. In addition, not following fire codes and result in code violations. Code violations that are fairly common among commercial property owners include:
- Failure to install sprinklers within buildings that require them (some are exempt).
- Failure to install fire alarms where they are now required.
- Failure to update fire prevention equipment to comply with structural changes to the property. This includes signs, extinguishers, and fire department hookups.
- Failure to maintain fire exits up to code standards, including proper signage.
Ensure you’re following the fire code for safety
The most common violations listed above are easy enough to avoid and should be taken more seriously by business owners of any size. If you’re unsure how to follow the code basics, contact your local Phoenix Fire Department and request to have a fire professional come out to your site prior to the official inspector, and educate yourself and your team on the fire hazards in your commercial property as well as any violations that may exist. This will help keep your business protected from fire and within code at all times, avoiding potential violations.
What to do when a fire occurs
Regardless of safeguards that may be put in place by commercial building owners, fires still happen sometimes, leading to considerable damage. When that happens, property owners should contact SERVPRO of Phoenix for our fire mitigation and restoration services. We also provide reconstruction for structures when needed as well. Fire remediation can help restore your commercial property to pre-fire condition, but it’s important to act fast to get fire remediation specialists out as quickly as possible to address the damage. If you find yourself dealing with commercial property fire damages, trust in SERVPRO of Phoenix and our professional fire remediation services. We offer immediate emergency service 24/7, so call 480-503-2090 and our trained fire technicians will be there to restore your commercial property damaged by fire.
Mold in Your Shower Can be More Than Just a Nuisance
Nothing makes a shower look unclean like visible mold. If you struggle with constant mold in your shower, it may be more than just a nuisance. Keep reading to learn about mold in your bathroom and how to address it.
What kind of mold is in your shower?
Mold in your shower can be put in two broad categories – mold behind the shower and surface mold. Surface mold is unsightly growth and can be more difficult to remove. It is the hidden moisture, however, inside the framing behind your shower which can lead to damage to your structure and expensive repairs. Any kind of constant mold growth is bad news. It continues to multiply, doing damage to the structure. As soon as you see mold reappearing after cleaning, contact SERVPRO so we can help you clean it up. We are a trained and experienced mold remediation company that can handle this problem for you before it spreads anymore.
What causes mold?
Moisture is the key to mold growth, so our goal is to get the water causing your mold out of your home fast. Oftentimes we need to find the source of moisture first, like a slow leak causing water to seep behind the walls of our shower. Our job is to stop the water damage, dry the wet structure and contents, so we can then clean the mold up. Even the best cleanup efforts fail if the moisture is not handled. Regardless of moisture conditions, it’s important to know that mold spores are everywhere, all the time, and not a sign that your cleaning skills are lacking. What causes spores to multiply and turn into an infestation is the presence of moisture allowing those spores to grow.
How SERVPRO fights mold growth
We have highly trained IICRC-Certified Applied Microbial Remediation technicians that can respond 24/7 if you have mold growth issues. We have effective mitigation and containment equipment to prevent the situation from getting worse while our qualified personnel remove active colonization and work to restore the damage that it has caused. When the remediation is complete, we may have an independent environmental professional record that the mold has returned to normal conditions.
Placing negative air machines near where any drywall demolition is done lowers the amount of airborne mold which we are exposed to plus makes removing the mold more efficient. If the mold has grown enough, we may have to remove damaged materials, and we also use damp wiping to clean soiled areas and vacuum excessive mold spores by utilizing HEPA vacuums and filters.
If you have mold, call the mold remediation specialists
SERVPRO of Phoenix does not waste time getting to your home after you reach out to us. Mold continues to grow until we stop the moisture problem and clean up the growth, so call us right away at (480) 503-2090. We’ll work with you to address the problem and advise you on how to prevent future growth.
How Does SERVPRO of Phoenix Handle Your Water Damage Issues?
Residential water damage requires professional assistance to limit damage to furniture and other belongings, as well as guarding against mold growth and odor issues. Excess water in a home can be the result of a leak after heavy rainfall, a broken pipe, or a malfunctioning appliance. In some cases, the amount of water can cause problems with your flooring or other structural components of your home. SERVPRO has trained technicians who can help to remove water and address the damage.
Water damage assessment
When you call in the water remediation specialists at SERVPRO, we immediately get to work assessing the extent of the damage. We determine if damage is limited to belongings, or if the damage is more widespread such as walls, flooring, roofs, etc. We determine the scope of your water damage, inspect and test to determine the extent of damage and establish how far the moisture has traveled to ensure proper and complete restoration.
Water removal and extraction
Because time is of the essence to keep damage to a minimum, the water removal process begins almost immediately and removes the majority of the water that is visible. We use powerful pumps and vacuum units to quickly remove substantial amounts of water from your property, which helps prevent secondary water damage and mold growth. Once the water is removed, we then focus on drying.
Drying impacted areas
The goal of the drying process is to dry the affected area thoroughly. We use room measurements, temperature, and relative humidity to determine the optimal number of air movers and dehumidifiers needed to dry your home or business. Lingering odors commonly dissipate once the area is dry. We use portable extraction units to remove and dry water. Dehumidifiers can help to replace moisture with drier air as well as removing it from fabrics. Finally, we can use spray deodorizer on surfaces to ensure the offending odor is neutralized while they dissipate.
Cleaning damaged items
The cleaning process comes next. We focus on cleaning fabrics, rugs, or walls while the surface texture is still wet. The likelihood of a successful restoration of upholstery is higher before stains are allowed to set. Using agitative cleaning methods, alongside foam cleaning for sensitive fabrics SERVPRO can target the damage before it becomes a permanent issue. We clean all of the restorable items and structures damaged by the water. Our professionals are trained to provide sanitizing treatments and to remove odors and deodorize your property.
Addressing remaining damage
In some cases, the water damage is substantial and restoration to get it back to what it was pre-water damage. Restoration may involve minor repairs such as replacing drywall and installing new carpet or may entail reconstruction of various areas or rooms in a home. A SERVPRO professional will review all substantial damage assessments and recommendations prior to any work beginning so homeowners are always in the loop.
If you experience water damage, it’s important to call professionals who follow a tried and true water repair process. Contact SERVPRO of Phoenix at (480) 503-2090 to get the help you need. We’re available 24/7 to serve you.
Is Too Much Technology a Fire Risk to Your Home?
With more and more gadgets available to consumers, the increased need to plug in and recharge those items increases significantly. Keeping cell phones, iPads, iPods, and all the other fun technology we have charged often means plugging charging cables into adapters. Even more practical technology like hearing aids, electric shavers, and electronic toothbrushes now are rechargeable, yet another item in need of power! This practice and others like it can lead to overheated plugs and eventually cause a fire. Learn how to stay plugged in while staying safe.
Understand plugging in safely
Using properly rated power strips can protect your home from fire damage caused by too many electrical devices plugged into one socket. This used to be a challenge only for areas of the house that traditionally demanded a lot of plugged-in items, such as family rooms with TVs, stereos, DVDs, etc. A second room with huge power demand is home offices where computers, phone chargers, printers, and monitors demand power, as well as routers. Now we have a third room demanding power: the bathroom. Electric shavers, hearing aids, toothbrushes, cordless facial brushes, and more up increasing demand for power in the bathroom. Nowadays, vanities and drawers in bathrooms hold electrical outlets, which make any electrical issue such as overheating and burning out of sight and therefore more apt to catch fire if overloaded. The challenge is that even with the best adapters, too much plugged into a single device can overload and thus overheat. The rubber or soft plastic electrical cords on many devices give off noxious fumes when overheated or burned, which can create very dense soot if temperatures are high enough. The plugs can also contribute to this, as well as melt and cause the carpeting and adjacent wall to singe or burn. A definite safety hazard!
SERVPRO can help with damage caused by electrical fires
The trained professionals at SERVPRO know how this kind of disaster can affect your family and we are ready to help clean up the damage and make things “Like it never even happened.” The areas above doorways and windows near the fire often contain concentrated levels of smoke residue while areas in direct contact with flames will have more substantial damage. We begin working to remove this soon after we arrive. Allowing this substance to remain longer only allows it to adhere more tightly, making it more difficult to clean away. We also clean anything else in your home where smoke residue and soot settled. After a fire, odor from the fire, even if a low smoldering flame, becomes very noticeable. While cleaning soot off surfaces removes a significant amount of this odor, if the fire created enough smoke, the odor left behind might remain because its source hides in areas where our tools cannot reach. Our IICRC-certified Odor Control Technician (OCT) can efficiently manage this mess. For the toughest odors, we rely on thermal fogging and other techniques. For smaller fires, the use of gel packs and injected deodorizers often suffices. Working with a trained fire remediation company allows you to have options should you experience an electrical fire.
Enjoy the technology but know who to call
Technology is here to stay, so understanding how to safely charge up your devices is critical to keeping your home from experiencing fire damage of any kind from electrical devices. SERVPRO of Phoenix is ready to help should you experience an electrical fire and can provide you with the level of service you deserve. Call us at (480) 503-2090 so we can help mitigate your home after it suffers smoke or fire damage from electrical devices.
SERVPRO Offers a Variety of Fire Remediation Services for Homeowners
Regardless of the size, a fire can cause some severe damage to your home. Depending on the extent of the damage, you may need professional fire remediation services to minimize additional damage and ensure a complete restoration. Understanding what kind of fire remediation services are available to you can help you be better prepared should your home experience a fire.
SERVPRO professionals are trained to help
SERVPRO technicians are IICRC certified which allows us to offer a variety of fire remediation services to address fire damage and get the restoration process started right away after a fire. SERVPRO of Phoenix is dedicated to responding immediately to your Phoenix fire damage emergency. A faster response is the key to help prevent additional damage and reduce the restoration cost. With recovery solutions including debris removal, soot, and smoke residue cleanup, addressing indoor air quality concerns, and reconstruction efforts, our IICRC-certified technicians and contractors can respond quickly to help.
Fire remediation service options
Here are some services that are available to you after you experience a fire in your home.
- Mitigation services: The focus of mitigation services is to secure your property and prevent any further damage after the fire has occurred. These services include boarding up any openings to secure the property, providing an alternative source of electricity, and emergency drying to prevent secondary water damage. Handling these issues quickly can keep further damage to a minimum
- Structural cleaning services: Structural cleaning services involve removing smoke and soot residue from your home and deodorizing the premises after a fire. Our experienced SERPVRO technicians step you through the entire process and strive to repair as much damage as possible. As the homeowner, you’ll be fully involved in the process from beginning to end.
- Contents cleaning services: Smoke and soot can damage your personal belongings and furniture if not cleaned promptly and thoroughly. While it may seem that wiping down belongings will suffice, that’s not always the case. SERVPRO technicians have expertise in cleaning and restoring many personal items such as furniture, documents and photographs, and other valuables after smoke and soot damage. We use state-of-the-art equipment to get rid of the damaging smoke and soot as efficiently and as quickly as possible and restore your belongings to pre-fire condition whenever possible.
- Specialty cleaning services: We also help you to subcontract the cleaning of precious or delicate items such as electronics, clothing, and expensive artwork.
- Reconstruction services: In some instances, a fire can cause structural damage that cannot be restored by fire damage restoration services. If there is a need for reconstruction or structural repair, you may need the help of licensed general contractors. SERVPRO’s building services are available to help.
Fire damage restoration is a slow process that takes time and patience. With SERVPRO, you get a team of fire damage restoration professionals who can help you restore your home back to preloss conditions in no time.
Contact SERVPRO of Phoenix after a fire
Call SERVPRO of Phoenix today at (480) 503 - 2090 to schedule an appointment and discuss your options today. Our experts are here to offer you all the help and guidance you need to make the whole process as painless as possible. We’re here 24/7 to serve you!
Tips to Keep Mold from Growing in Your Bathroom
For some people, fighting mold and mildew in their bathroom is an ongoing problem. Regardless of the time of year, fighting mold in the bathroom is necessary if you want a clean bathroom as well as preventing damage to the walls, flooring and ceiling. Here are a few tips to keep that mold growth at bay.
Mold spores are everywhere
One misunderstanding most people have about mold is that mold only grows in certain places. Unfortunately, that’s not necessarily true. As a matter of fact, microscopic mold spores exist almost everywhere, both indoors and outdoors. Consider these facts:
- Mold is present almost everywhere, indoors, and outdoors.
- Mold spores are microscopic and can drift in the air, entering your home through windows, doors, or AC/heating systems.
- Mold spores flourish on moisture. Mold spores can rapidly grow into colonies when exposed to water.
- Mold often produces a strong, musty odor and can lead you to possible mold problem areas.
- Even higher-than-normal indoor humidity can support mold growth. Keep indoor humidity below 45 percent.
How to stop mold growth
All bathrooms will have some level of moisture present at all times; it goes with the nature of the room, but by eliminating as much moisture as possible in the bathroom, you can stop mold growth. Maintaining a mold-free bathroom is fairly simple if you follow these tips and remain diligent in your cleaning effort.
Utilize a good exhaust fan
Effective fans are a good defense against mold and moisture in your bathroom. Be sure that all your bathrooms have a well-functioning fan. Make sure the cubic feet per minute count is enough to cover the size of the bathroom (manufacturers will list this on the box). Run the fan during all showers and baths and for at least 30 minutes afterward.
Use a squeegee
Believe it or not, using the squeegee on your tub and shower walls after every shower or bath reduces up to 75 percent of the moisture in the air. That takes care of so much moisture that can lead to the rapid growth of mold in all areas of the bathroom so use one after every use!
Look for and fix all leaks
If you have any leaks within the bathroom, fix it right away, no matter how minor it may seem. Call a plumber and have them check for any hidden leaks within the walls. Going a long period of time with any leaks will ultimately cause mold growth and will make it hard to get rid of later.
What to do if you find mold
No matter how diligent you are, you may still experience mold in your bathroom. If you find mold, have a mold remediation professional take care of it. Mold is resilient and getting rid of it is hard. SERVPRO of Phoenix has trained and certified mold specialists to help you with your mold issues so reach out to them at 480-503-2090 to help you address the mold growth.
Residual Damage from Storms Can Cause Issues if Not Detected
Phoenix experienced a fairly substantial monsoon season this year, with a torrential amount of rain dropped in a short period of time. Most homeowners will do a cursory review of their property following such big storms; if no damage is found, the storm is soon forgotten. Unfortunately, not all damage shows up right away, and going undetected can cause serious issues.
The damage we see after a storm
Storm-related flood damage in Phoenix happens to homes every year. Once the downpour is over, the effects can be mild, like soggy area rugs, to minor issues such as leaky windowsills, to devastating such as a loss of walls and floors. Since these are easily spotted, it makes sense to call remediation specialists like SERVPRO who are ready with a highly trained team of technicians and years of experience to restore each home to its original condition.
The damage you may overlook after a storm
Since the rain strikes so quickly, it’s difficult for the ground around our homes to absorb all of the moisture. Pair with that the heavy rains and high winds that can cause damage to our roofs, and you can see why monsoons can cause so much damage. Unfortunately, sometimes that damage is difficult to see. Perhaps just enough water seeped into your roof through a small crack to slowly accumulate in your attic. It may not be enough to see if it doesn’t seep through to your ceiling with those telltale brown spots. Nonetheless, if left untreated, those small leaks can cause big problems. Not only does the water cause additional weakness in walls and ceilings, but long-standing water can cause mold growth. You may also experience water seepage behind walls that go undetected until mold growth appears.
How to detect unseen issues
Telltale signs of water damage in attics and ceilings might be the brown water spots that appear on ceilings or walls. You might also see bubbling of paint or bulging of drywall. Another sign of unseen damage is odor. Mold growth over time can cause a musty odor even before you see any kind of mold growth. All of these indicate a problem that needs to be addressed immediately; ideally provided by a storm remediation specialist.
Get help immediately to address issues
By the time you spot damage that has been lingering, chances are the situation has been there for a bit. That is why it is so important to call us immediately at the first sign of a problem. Not only can we address the damage or mold growth, but we’ll also identify the areas of weakness can address those as well to prevent future damage.
At SERVPRO of Phoenix, we do everything we can to return your home to its original condition and to help you prevent as much of the damage as possible in the first place. If you want to reduce storm damage in your home in the future, call us today at (480) 503-2090 to schedule an inspection.
Fight the Flood Damage in Your Home with Professional Water Damage Remediation
Water can be quite merciless in the amount of damage it can do to a flooded home. It can seep through solid materials like concrete or blocks if given enough time and make its way into any crack or crevice found on your property. If you experience a flood in your home, it’s important to work with professionals to get it addressed immediately.
Professional water damage restoration
A professional water damage restoration specialist in Phoenix can help you fight back against water issues damaging your home. With a variety of tools, experience, and training a quality SERVPRO technician will work hard to produce the results you deserve. There is no reason for you to take problems like this on alone, in fact, it is likely better that you seek help from the start. With years of experience, SERVPRO can remove water from your home and address the resulting damage.
How water can damage your home
SERVPRO technicians respond to a variety of water intrusion situations and provide custom solutions to make sure it’s addressed. Since flooding can happen to homes for a variety of reasons, addressing the source of the water, removing the water, and repairing the resulting damages takes expertise to handle each unique situation. During the winter months, you may have problems with frozen or broken pipes depending on the weather. When a pipe bursts, you can easily find your home filled with over 6-inches of water within minutes. Though not typical in Phoenix, unusual winter freezes do happen, leaving homeowners unprepared. Some homeowners have had issues with their pool. If allowed to overrun while refilling your pool, water can quickly fill a basement, flooding storage and causing significant damages. SERVPRO also responds to a variety of issues concerning washing machines or dishwashers. A malfunctioning appliance can flood your home within minutes, leaving little time to react. Causing serious damage to your flooring, furniture, and belongings, or even leading to additional hazards that make it hard to recover.
How water is removed and damages addressed
It takes industrial-grade water extraction equipment and infrared moisture detectors to get water out of every nook and cranny where water seeps into. While homeowners mistakenly feel they can clean up water on their own, without a thorough job, other issues such as mold and odors can occur. Cleaning, deodorization, and sanitation technicians with the proper training provide you with your best opportunity for recovery after a home is flooded. We follow a specific water restoration process to ensure the best outcome.
All you have to do is contact SERVPRO of Phoenix to receive quality one-stop solutions; we can help you recover from most of the problems that occur in your home, call us today at 480-503-2090.