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How To Pump Water From a Flooded Basement

12/6/2019 (Permalink)

A sump pump installed in a basement of a home with a water powered backup system. Sump pump in Pompano Beach, FL

How To Pump Water From a Flooded Basement

A major storm or broken pipe can cause a basement flood. With some basic equipment from a hardware or construction store, you should be able to drain the basement yourself.
You should not start the process until the exterior water has receded. In the meantime, keep any pets and children away from the flooded basement. You should also shut off the electricity in your home.
Be sure you have everything you need before entering the basement. The main tools you will use are:

  • Submersible pump
  • Hose
  • Nylon rope
  • Generator
  • Extension cord

Setting Up

Start by attaching the pump cord and the extension cord. Put the cords around a heavy object so they won't get wet. Next, attach a sump or garden hose to the top of the pump and tie the nylon rope. The hose should be placed so the excess water can drain into a nearby sewer.

Pumping

Use the nylon rope to lower the pump in place. Then turn on the generator and plug in the extension cord. The pump should then start draining the basement flood water. Once there are only a few inches of water left, put the pump in the lowest spot of the basement so it can suck up the remaining fluid.

Vacuuming

If the damage to your Pompano Beach, FL, basement is minimal, you may not even need to use a pump. Water that is less than one inch deep and confined to a small area can be drained using a wet/dry vacuum. This tool removes the water from the floor and puts it into a four-gallon tank that must be drained when it gets full.
Of course, the basement flood cleanup doesn’t end once the water has been removed. You also have to dry off and clean your belongings. Some wet items, such as carpet, may have to be discarded completely to reduce the risk of mold growth.
Emergency restoration professionals can help with the drying process. Your insurance coverage may even pay for the cost.

How Water Damage can Lead To Mold

11/27/2019 (Permalink)

Rotten ceiling Rotten ceiling due to water damage

Mold Prevention

One of the first things to understand about mold prevention for your Palm Aire, FL, home, is the fact that in many cases mold problems arise from water caused damage. Fortunately, understanding how water caused damage can lead to mold can help you take the proper mitigation steps. Here are three things you may want to know.

1. Mold Grows in Moist Areas

The first thing to understand about mold growth is that spore colonies grow best in areas of high moisture. Water can often leave behind areas of dampness which can then turn into a prime habitat for mold spores. These may also include darker areas such as under flooring, or cracks between tile.

2. Water Damage can Leave Rot

Another thing to understand about mold prevention is that damage caused by water can often lead to rot. This in turn can provide food for mold spores to thrive off of. Mold is classified as a fungi which means it grows from other organic materials under the correct conditions. Rotting drywall, flooring, or other damp materials found in the home after flooding or water problems can provide a source of nourishment for the spores.

3. Unseen Damage Can Create a Mold Habitat

If you do have damage caused by water in the home that it's best to contact a water damage restoration service as quickly as possible. This is because if left untreated water can soak into unseen areas and begin creating the conditions where mold can potentially grow. A professional will often be able to find these unseen areas before major problems can occur.
It's important for mold prevention to understand how damage caused by water can become potential mold issues. Remember that mold tends to grow in moist areas, that water damage can leave rot which mold feeds on, and that any unseen damage can also lead to large spore habitats. If you have any questions a professional can help.

3 Tips for Keeping Your Furnace Running

11/22/2019 (Permalink)

Technician looking over a gas furnace with a flashlight before cleaning it If you maintain your furnace well, however, it should be reliable for the whole season

Heating System Maintenance

As the days grow shorter and the weather gets colder, you want to make sure your furnace is working well. Proper maintenance not only ensures that you won't be left with a chilly home when the first cold snap hits in Lighthouse Point, FL, but it also helps make certain your furnace won't become a fire hazard. You can likely avoid the need for fire cleaning if you keep up with heating system maintenance.

Cleaning

The most important aspect of furnace maintenance is keeping it clean. Focus on these three parts of the furnace to save yourself from requiring smoke cleaning services:

  • Motor
  • Blower
  • Filter

Fire cleaning specialists recommend that you change the filter before you turn the furnace on for the first time each year. When you remove the panel that covers the filter, you can gain access to the blower and the motor. The fan of the blower slides out so you can reach each blade. Use a toothbrush or some other tool for eliminating dirt and debris from small spaces. Clean each blade thoroughly to remove dust and residue. Wipe down the motor and all the surfaces. Finally, use the vacuum hose to remove loosened dirt.

Lubrication

If your motor is sealed, you don't have to provide extra lubrication. It is lubricated as part of the manufacturing process. To check on the type of motor, look for oil ports near the bearings. If you see ports, this means you have to lubricate it manually. You will need 10-weight motor oil, but you should only use a few drops. Lubricate your motor at least once a year, preferably right before the cold season starts. A well-oiled motor keeps your furnace running smoothly.
A burned-out furnace can cause a lot of damage that requires professional fire cleaning services. If you maintain your furnace well, however, it should be reliable for the whole season.

How Can First Responders Remain Safe Before, During and After a Flood?

11/12/2019 (Permalink)

con plastic medical syringe with needle and vial in flat style, concept of vaccination Keep up to date with vaccinations

How Can First Responders Remain Safe Before, During and After a Flood?

When flooding causes devastation to your area in Coconut Creek, FL, your job as a first responder is to keep others safe. However, there are several precautions that emergency responders themselves should take to keep safe when responding to a flood.

1. Prepare for and Protect Yourself From Hazards

Wearing the appropriate clothing and using the right equipment when responding to a flood is often crucial. Boots, masks, gloves and other water-resistant clothes can reduce the chance of you coming in contact with contaminated water or mold spores. It's also often useful to be aware of common hazards during a flood, such as electrical hazards. Though some homeowners may be concerned about their belongings, emergency restoration services can assist in rebuilding homes, and it's often best to discourage others from attempting to salvage items in their homes.

2. Keep Up-To-Date with Vaccinations

As a first responder, there are various immunizations that can help protect you when you're in the midst of a flood response. The CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) requires emergency responders to have a Hepatitis B vaccination, as well as a tetanus booster once every 10 years. There are several additional vaccinations that may be helpful for emergency responders, though they are not required, such as a Hepatitis A vaccine and a typhoid vaccine.

3. Practice Effective Hygiene After a Flood

What you do after you respond to a flood is often just as important as what you do before and during your response. Effective hygiene after responding to a flood is a simple way to promote good health. After a flood, it's often helpful to wash your body with clean water and gentle soap. If any of your clothes have been contaminated, it's usually best not wear them again until they have been thoroughly sanitized and clean.

As a first responder, it's often necessary to keep yourself safe in order to help others. Preparing for hazards, keeping up-to-date with immunizations and practicing good hygiene after responding to a flood is often helpful.

Know the Basics of Your Commercial Storm Coverage

10/26/2019 (Permalink)

Structural damage on building due to storm Structural damage in a Kendall, FL property

It may not be necessary to know everything about your commercial storm coverage, after all that's what your trusted insurance agent is for, but you should definitely know the basics. This puts you in a strong position to make informed decisions on your coverage. It also enables you to prioritize what fixes and preparations you should make to your building and its grounds in Kendall, FL. It's all about protecting the business from the effects of a powerful storm. As with all insurance policies, you don't want to be paying too much for storm insurance, nor do you want to have unnecessary gaps in your coverage.

Understand What Is Covered

It's critical to know what weather events your building is covered for. Many insurance coverage policies include the following situations:

  • Wind damage caused by a powerful storm
  • A business interruption caused by an "Act of God"
  • Water damage caused by a sudden event
  • Structural damage caused by lightning

Each policy is different, so make sure you have the storm insurance coverage your company needs. It's also critical to work to minimize the damage to your business by calling in storm mitigation professionals after a tornado or hurricane has passed through. A company that is Faster to any size disaster could help your business recover quickly from a storm.

Know What Is Not Covered

A business policy often includes several exclusions, specific events that are not covered under your policy. This could include damage from flooding, especially if your building is located in a flood zone. It may include some forms of water damage such as sewer backups. If you are found to be in neglect, such as failing to maintain your roof adequately, or if a problem has occurred over a period of time, this might be excluded as well. Your best defense is to know your policy and have frequent discussions with your insurance agent. This allows you to customize your insurance coverage to provide the best plan for the best price.

What To Do About a Sewage Spill

10/18/2019 (Permalink)

Sewage spill on a floor Call a professional restoration company to cleanup a sewer damage

A sewer cleanup in Wellington, FL, is serious business. As a homeowner, you won't be able to do much yourself, but you should know the basics in order to keep yourself and your family safe before the repairmen arrive.

Types of Contamination

Water damage is usually categorized into three levels of contamination. If the water is left to sit for more than 48 hours, the level can increase. Sewer backup is categorized as the most dangerous, in the third category. They are as follows:

  • Clean Water- from a clean source, not dangerous, ex. faucet overflow
  • Gray Water- used water, can be harmful, ex. dishwasher overflow
  • Black Water- contaminated water, contain feces or bacteria, very harmful, ex. sewage backup

Damage Control

As soon as you notice that a sewage leak has occurred, you need to do what you can to ensure everyone's safety. Everyone who does not need to be there should leave the premises. Turn off the electricity if you think it will be a hazard. If turning off the main water supply line will help, do so. Make sure to wear protective equipment like gloves, rubber boots and a mask while in the vicinity of the sewer cleanup area. Once you have safely done all you can, grab your phone and evacuate yourself.

Restoration Procedures

Dealing with sewage or a flooded toilet can be dangerous, so it is best handled by certified sewage damage remediation experts with specialized equipment. Find a company you trust in advance so that you aren't stuck settling or scrambling at the last minute. They will restore what they can, but be prepared to replace any porous materials or contents that may have been affected. You should also call your insurance company to determine if you are covered for this type of disaster.
From the moment you realize what is happening, do your best to avoid touching any contaminated water. Sewer cleanup is best left to the professionals, so you just need to worry about getting out of there and calling the right people.

3 Actions to Take Immediately After a Home Fire

10/9/2019 (Permalink)

Colored document folder with a label that says Important Replace important documents

After a fire in your home in Pompano Beach, FL, you may be overwhelmed by the incident and have no idea what to do afterwards. While you naturally need some time to process these events, it is important to act and forge the path to continuing your life. Consider the following actions to get the right resources, throw away damaged items and replace anything you will need soon.

Gather Essential Resources

Whether you lived in a small house alone or a larger building with a family, you will need as much help as possible. Prioritize the essentials, such as food, rest and shelter. Contact organizations such as the American Red Cross that can help you obtain these resources as you get back on your feet. Also contact your insurance company and provide them with details about the fire.

Get Rid of Vulnerable Items

As you work with the fire cleanup company to restore the residence to its former glory, you will need to make important decisions on what items to keep and which ones to throw away. There are certain items that are more vulnerable to contamination created by fire damage than others.

  • Damaged, burned clothing
  • All perishable and non-perishable foods
  • Medications
  • Toiletries and cosmetics

These items can be chemically altered by high heat or contaminated by ash, soot or smoke. Even if they are not significantly changed, their taste or performance may become undesirable.

Replace Important Documents

In addition to food, medicine and other items weak to the effects of the fire, your documents are also likely victims. There are particular documents you will need to replace immediately, including the driver's license, social security cards and credit cards, as well as more. Make the necessary calls and ensure new copies are on the way.
The aftermath of a fire will have you make important decisions, from what items to throw away to calling for assistance. Take your time, recover and tackle these situations as they manifest.

The Pros and Cons of Using a Mold Testing Kit

9/26/2019 (Permalink)

Close-up of person hand wearing gloves measuring wetness of a moldy wall Mold testing in a Palm Aire, FL home

The Pros and Cons of Using a Mold Testing Kit

Moisture causes mold growth. Mold reproduces by releasing spores into the air. Those spores then attach themselves to surfaces and cracks — the cycle repeats. Mold is everywhere in Palm Aire, FL. There’s no getting around it. Using a mold testing kit allows you to check your home for mold. But is taking the DIY route worth it? Check out these pros and cons before you make your decision.

1. Expense

Pro - DIY mold kits can cost between $8 and $50. The package contains a petri dish and a swab. That’s it. Hiring a mold remediation specialist to test your home for mold can cause upward of $300.
Con - The expense with the kit starts to grow with the type and amount of testing you want. Although you buy a test from a store for $8, sending it off to a lab for further testing may cost you $50. Don’t get too excited about how cheap the price is.

2. Time

Pro – Directions for mold testing usually ask you to place a petri dish on a surface for an hour. Then you close it up and wait. Some tests take as little as 10 minutes to show results.
Con – If you want extra testing, you’ll have to send it off to a lab. Some kit results will come back in five days while others may take 10 days.

3. Explanation

Pro – If there is mold growth in the petri dish after the incubation period, you have mold. Simple as that. The lab can give you information on what type of mold you have in your home. You will receive an explanation in the mail.
Con – There is mold everywhere. No mold in a petri dish does not mean there is no mold in the house. A mold removal specialist will speak with you in person. This person will go into detail with you his or her concerns.
It is up to you to choose between a DIY mold kit and a mold specialist. But only an environment hygienist can do accurate mold testing. Is it worth spending the extra money to give you peace of mind?

5 Steps To Take When Water Damages Your Business

9/26/2019 (Permalink)

Sand bags surrounding the outside of a store Sandbags surrounding a property in Pompano Beach, FL

How To Protect Your Property From Further Damages

According to reports, extreme weather events have increased in number over the last few decades. If you have experienced storm-related water damage in your business, you are undoubtedly concerned about how to protect your property from further damage. Staying safe and asking for assistance are your first steps.


Prioritize Safety

It is important you stay clear of the flooded area until it is safe and electrical power is disabled. If the electrical box is on the flooded level, it is strongly recommended you wait until professional assistance arrives.



Enlist Professional Assistance Floodwater contamination is dangerous and requires immediate assistance from professional water restoration experts. Here’s why:





Floodwater is the most hazardous level of water contamination, requiring specialized safety precautions to address potential sewage and chemical toxicity.
Experts are trained to work quickly to minimize water damage that can progress with time.
Contamination may not be visible to the layperson, and if overlooked, could lead to mold and irreversible damage.




While you wait for the experts, it will help to stay focused and accomplish a few more tasks.


Report the Damage to Your Insurance Agent

Your agent will inform you of your flood coverage. If you have flood insurance, it will be a separate policy from coverage for non-weather events, such as broken pipes.



Take Photographs

If you can do so safely, taking photos of internal and external damage can assist your insurance claim.



Work as a Team

If your staff is cleared to stay in the facility for the water cleanup and restoration, it can be useful for your them to work with the teams to inform the process. The experts may be there for a long while, and having a good rapport with them can make it easier for all involved.


A stormwater emergency in your Pompano Beach, FL, facility often means an unwelcome upheaval in the operation of your business and in the lives of your coworkers. Prioritizing safety and trusting the experts may be the best strategy for navigating the challenges of significant water damage. Staying focused on solutions can help you and your staff emerge from the experience feeling “Like it never even happened”.

Getting Back to Normal After Water Damage

9/18/2019 (Permalink)

A SERVPRO technician extracting water from a wet carpet with a vacuum in a facility Mitigation - the act of lessening the force or intensity of something unpleasant, as wrath, pain, grief, or extreme circumstances.

The term mitigation means – the act of lessening the force or intensity of something unpleasant, as wrath, pain, grief, or extreme circumstances.[i]  One of the greatest parts of being one of the team members for SERVPRO® of Pompano Beach is that we are able to do just that; reduce the severity of a major loss: the water damage in your home or office.

Are All Water Disasters The Same?

Absolutely not!  Water damage is completely unique to each home, each source of intrusion, the magnitude of the damage and whether the water is clean water or contaminated.  Because of this, SERVPRO® of Pompano Beach must assess the job thoroughly to determine the proper course of action needed to get you back on your feet.

How Do We Do It?

Water Extraction –

Water extraction uses vacuum-type machinery to effectively remove all the surface water damage that is visible.  Once the source has been stopped, our skilled team of technicians and crew chiefs systematically begin removing the water from furniture as well as carpets and other forms of flooring.  This process stops the furthering of any water intrusion and prevents any more damage to your property.

Dehumidification –

Air has water in it.  When we watch the weather on our local news stations, they give us the relative humidity.  Humidity is the amount of water in your air.  Florida is notorious for having higher levels of humidity than some of the less tropical states in the U.S.  While most humidity is taken out of your home via your air conditioning system, when water loss happens the levels of moisture are too much for your HVAC system to take out on its own.  Our dehumidifiers raise the temperature level in the home or business and literally suck the moisture out of the surrounding area leaving your home dry and ready to move forward with repairs.

It is our passion to get your home clear of mold-causing moisture.  When moisture remains in a home for even a small amount of time, mold spores can grow.  Once mold occurs, it causes much more damage and can even affect the health of those who spend most of their time inside the home or office.

SERVPRO® of Pompano Beach is excited to begin the mitigation process in your place of business or your home.  And please tell your friends.  You never know you need us until you need us.  SERVPRO® has been faithfully serving the community for over 50 years and we would love to be your restoration service provider.

[i] https://www.dictionary.com/browse/mitigation