Why Mold Growth is an Ongoing Homeowner Concern During Monsoons
There is an unmistakable odor that accompanies mold growth, and when a homeowner first detects a scent, chances are that mold growth has already taken hold. While many Arizona homeowners assume that mold issues only happen to homes in the Midwest and other more humid areas of the country, the fact is that mold growth can be an issue in the Phoenix area as well. Learn why mold growth is an ongoing homeowner concern during monsoons.
The presence of mold spores in your home
No matter how meticulous you keep your home, there is a surprising fact that most people don’t realize: mold spores are present everywhere, all the time, indoors and outdoors. It’s not a sign that a home isn’t clean; it’s simply of a fact of nature. The challenge is when excessive moisture or humidity is introduced into a home, as can happen during a flood, undetected leak, or monsoons, mold growth can occur. The key is to keep moisture at bay which can be difficult during monsoons.
How monsoons contribute to mold growth in homes
Monsoons are an unusual type of storm because of how much water gets distributed in such a short period of time. When monsoons dump a bunch of water, the ground surrounding the home may not be able to adequately absorb the water, which can cause seepage into walls if the grading of the home doesn’t appropriately divert water away from the house. Tiny unseen cracks in window casings and sills are another source of unseen water accumulation that can result in mold. Roofs take a real beating in the Phoenix summer heat, and unseen cracks, missing tiles and worn materials may allow water to seep unseen into attics and behind walls. All of these situations can result in mold growth during monsoons. If mold occurs, you’ll need mold remediation experts to address the situation.
What to do if you suspect mold in your home
As mentioned previously, that notorious musty odor is a dead giveaway of potential mold growth in your home, as are small spots on walls and ceilings. However, if you don’t see either of these but experienced even minimal water damage to your home during a monsoon, you may be at risk for mold growth. To ensure your home doesn’t have any undetected mold growth as a result of water damage, contact SERVPRO of East Phoenix. Available 24/7, our technicians can come out and thoroughly inspect your home, remove any water that may be present, can address any mold issues that they may find. Leave mold growth to the experts. Call SERVPRO at 602-507-6163 to help with mold growth today.
Cleaning Your Office Building’s Air Ducts is a Good Idea
Most homeowners are aware of the importance of air duct cleaning. Unfortunately, not all office building owners are as diligent as they should be when it comes to cleaning air ducts. Learn why cleaning ducts on a regular basis is a good idea.
What is air duct cleaning?
Duct cleaning generally refers to the cleaning of various heating and cooling system components of forced air systems, including the supply and return air ducts and registers, grilles and diffusers, heat exchangers heating and cooling coils, condensation drip pans, fan motor and fan housing, and the air handling unit housing. If not properly maintained and operated, these components may become contaminated with particles of dust, pollen, or other debris.
Why air duct cleaning is important for office buildings
Ventilation systems are often the biggest culprit in poor indoor air quality. Making it a priority to inspect the ductwork of your business building is a good idea to prevent the accumulation of dust, pollen, and other debris in your ducts. If your HVAC has been operating for some time without attention, it may be time to inspect them to see if it’s time for a cleaning. This is especially true if your system is running constantly during hot summer months, or if you recently did renovations that created a significant amount of dust. If you haven’t cleaned your system and its vents, it could be circulating one or more of the following:
- Dirt and debris
Cleaning your air ducts helps restore peak efficiency of your system, can prevent odors, and can help reduce the potential of mold growth. Not sure if you need a cleaning? If you see excessive dirt around your air returns, it’s a good idea to contact SERVPRO!
Contact SERVPRO for your air duct cleaning
SERVPRO of East Phoenix can routinely inspect the heating, ventilation, and air conditioning unit (HVAC) in your commercial building. Keeping them clean can extend the life of the equipment. This can in turn save you money and give you cleaner air to breathe. When its time to clean your office building’s air ducts contact SERVPRO of East Phoenix cleaning professionals at (602) 507-6163.
Address Commercial Storm Damage Quickly to Avoid Further Damages
Flood damage during monsoons can be one of the most challenging obstacles for any business to navigate. Flood damage is often thorough, impacting a wide area across a building and finding its way into dark and forgettable places where it can go unnoticed indefinitely until further damage arises. If given time, flood damage can later cause more types of damage through corrosion and mold growth if you are not careful. If your business suffers storm damage, work with SERVPRO to address the issue and prevent further damage.
What kind of buildings are at risk for storm damage?
Any building could experience monsoon storm flooding, but locations near water or low-lying areas are particularly vulnerable when monsoons dump a substantial amount of water in a short period of time. Never assume that your building is immune to flood damage simply because it is on higher ground; internal leaks or floods could strike unexpectedly and cause significant damage to any commercial building of any size.
What happens during floods?
Floodwaters tend to cover all or a vast part of a building, ruining, staining, and contaminating floors and low-lying objects. The waters are often loaded with dirt, grime, and biological or chemical hazards, making cleanup tricky and dangerous. Furthermore, floods often create ideal conditions for mold growth, which may cause health effects. Those in the Phoenix metro area don’t consider themselves at risk of floods but again, with monsoons comes the potential for an enormous amount of water to be dumped in a short period of time; something most Phoenix streets are not able to sufficiently accommodate, which can result in a building flooding.
How are floodwaters cleaned up?
While SERVPRO of East Phoenix treats each flood situation uniquely based on the circumstance, there are specific steps they take to address the issue. First, any remaining water is pumped out with heavy extractors, sometimes truck-mounted for more significant amounts of water. Then, air movers and dehumidifiers are used to dry out the area and eliminate any remaining moisture. Finally, deodorization and cleanup can begin, with all affected areas and objects scrubbed and sanitized. During this phase, mold removal and restoration processes may also take place, depending on the situation. A SERVPRO professional will always consult with you, so you know exactly what your building is facing and what they recommend for remediation and restoration.
Work with us if you experience floodwaters in your building.
As a flood damage restoration leader, SERVPRO of East Phoenix has the specialized expertise, equipment, and training to restore your home to its pre-storm condition. We offer 24/7 emergency service to help you when you need it. Contact us at 602-507-6163 if you need assistance.
Know How to Recover Quickly After Disaster Strikes Your Business
Business owners know that the unexpected will eventually happen. Putting business emergency plans in place are key to navigating disastrous events, such as flooding from a broken pipe, mold, or fires. Being prepared for downtime, lost revenue and other negative effects can make or break a business so the more you know, the faster you can recover.
Planning ahead for possible disasters
Although some things are unavoidable, having a strong understanding of potential risks, what they may mean to the business, and how to bounce back is necessary to prevent substantial loss. Every business is different and may face different issues that could result in an interruption or complete shutdown. Along with potential environmental problems, such as flooding, the human factor also needs to be considered such as fire or arson. Once the risks are known, it is easier to figure out which may be preventable or at least mitigated. Analyzing the risks includes calculating their costs. Factors that come into play include lost income, additional expenses for property loss and repairs, and possible penalties if you are liable for the damage experienced. Insurance is easy to forget about until it is needed. If large water damage occurs, do you know what will and won’t be covered? Do you know a water remediation company to call?
What to do if disaster strikes your business
Even with all the planning, disasters can strike, as they’re not completely unavoidable. With a plan in place, facing emergencies will be a little more manageable. The plan to minimize losses does require immediate action. Once you file a claim, contacting a damage mitigation and restoration company is the next step. Along with finding the source of the problem, water removal and drying process should be started as soon as possible. Calling in trained disaster professionals like SERVPRO can help the recovery process happen quicker.
Call SERVPRO for your business recovery
Running a business comes with many unknowns but figuring out how to deal with a loss doesn’t have to be one of them. Creating a plan of action and knowing the possible risks may minimize claim losses and get your business back to operating "Like it never even happened." If your business experiences a disaster, contact SERVPRO of East Phoenix immediately to get the recovery process started and your business back on track. We can be reached 24/7 at 602-507-6163.
Important Steps to Prevent a Home Fire
SERVPRO fire remediation experts are trained to be faster to any disaster, and to restore fire damage "Like it never even happened." You know we’re always a phone call away if you experience a house fire. However, the ideal situation is to avoid a fire in the first place. Here are a few tips to mitigate the risk of a fire before it happens.
Check Your Smoke Detectors
Be sure to regularly check the fire detectors throughout your home at least annually to ensure they have working batteries and are operating properly. You can usually do this by pressing the little button on your smoke detectors. If the alarm is loud, that means it’s working properly. If the sound is weak and faint, or there’s no sound at all, then that means you’re in need of a battery change. If you’re unsure how to test your smoke detectors or unable to, many local fire departments will provide this service for you. Keep those smoke detectors in working order!
Clean Your Stove and Oven
One of the leading causes of stove or oven fires are food bits left behind from past meals that can catch fire the next time you’re cooking, so it’s important to clean your stove and oven regularly to ensure there’s nothing that could suddenly spark a kitchen fire. Be sure to always make sure things like towels or oven mitts are far enough away from your stove and/or oven that they won’t accidentally catch on fire and never wear loose-fitting sleeves that can catch fire. Just be aware of what’s near those flames to avoid any fire risks.
Watch those flames
It’s important to never leave the kitchen while cooking because a fire can start quickly and can escalate even faster if you’re not there to take action right away. Remember that attacking grease fires will only further feed the flames and that the best way to subdue a grease fire is to cover it and trap it, not throw water on it. Keep an eye on children and pets while you’re cooking too; one small distraction can lead to a house fire and injury quickly, so always watch those flames and never leave a stove unattended while in use.
Clean The Lint Trap in Your Dryer
This is one of those things you should do after every load of laundry to be safe. It can be easy to forget, but when lint backs up in your dryer it can create a dangerous fire hazard. It’s also a good idea to check behind your dryer to ensure no lint or articles of clothing have fallen back there and created a fire risk. While cleaning it every time may not seem like much, an uncleaned dryer filter can quickly cause a house fire, so get in the habit of doing this!
Keep a Fire Extinguisher in Your Home
Keep a functional fire extinguisher somewhere that’s easily accessible in the event of a fire. If you’ve never used an extinguisher before, be sure you or someone in your home is properly trained to use a fire extinguisher. Here are a few basic tips when operating a fire extinguisher.
If you experience a fire, contact SERVPRO of East Phoenix
Sometimes despite your best effort, fires happen. If you experience a fire, contact us immediately, 24/7 at 602-507-6163. We specialize in fire remediation and can help you recover from the fire and get your life back on track.
Monsoon Lightning Poses Fire Threat to Phoenix Homes
In addition to torrential rain, monsoons can bring damage to your home through lightning strikes resulting in fire. If your home has been hit by lightning, you should call the fire department immediately. Learn what to do if your home experiences a fire and you need damage repair quickly.
Lightning strike fires
It’s common for fires to start in the attic or inside walls of homes when lightning strikes directly. These fires inside enclosed spaces might not be visible when they first start. Often, lightning passes through house branches and uses more than one path to ground at a time. It can jump from one conductive path to another as well. Lightning can quickly start a fire and create fire damage to your Phoenix home. Once the fire is out, the damage can continue due to smoke and soot. You’ll need to work with a professional to help recover from the fire.
How SERVPRO helps you recover from a lightning strike
Getting the fire extinguished is of course your first priority. Once the fire department leaves, however, your trouble isn’t over yet, as now you’re faced with fire damage cleanup. SERVPRO can help you clean up this soot covering in your home and prevent additional damages. Once you contact us, we waste no time in getting to your home to help you. Some soot residues are more straightforward to clean than others. Each fire goes through stages and crates both dry and wet smoke. Wet smoke is usually more difficult to clean.
More kinds of materials can be restored when exposed to dry smoke than wet. Dry smoke residues contain fewer aerosols and deposit small, dry particles on surfaces. It also does not stain surfaces as deeply as wet smoke, plus the odor is not as pungent. SERVPRO staff use cleaning procedures that are less aggressive to get rid of residues from dry smoke.
Restoration after a fire
Restoration, when wet smoke residues are present, is harder to clean. Wet smoke usually has a high number of aerosols like solvents, varnishes, and other liquid components. During a slow-burning fire, air currents do not drive the smoke from the fire’s heat. Wet smoke also moves slowly and has time to get into crevices and enclosed areas which generally would not get contaminated by a fire that is burning fast. SERVPRO follows a very specific fire restoration process to address your home’s contents and get your house back to preloss condition.
Unfortunately, sometimes contents exposed to wet smoke and a smoldering fire cannot be restored. Aerosols found in wet smoke penetrate and stain finished surfaces, and unfinished surfaces absorbed and entrap the residues. Our technicians will work with you to give you a complete understanding of what is salvageable and what needs to be removed. We’ll communicate with you throughout the entire process, so you have a complete understanding of what is happening.
SERVPRO of East Phoenix knows how to clean up all kinds of smoke residues, so your home is thoroughly restored after a fire. Contact us at (602) 507-6163 as soon as the fire is out, and we’ll get to work cleaning up the damage to your home.
Do You Know When to Call a Pro for Water Damage?
Sometimes water damage occurs on a smaller scale, such as a persistent leak from a faucet fixture that, over time, causes water damage throughout the walls, cabinetry, and flooring of your Phoenix home. Drying this damage fully is critical to preventing secondary effects that could prove detrimental to your home such as mold and mildew growth. It’s important to know when to call a pro when you experience water damage in your home.
Drying out the impacted areas of your home
Drying out the water damaged elements within your home begins with an assessment of the full scope of the damage that exists. Our SERVPRO of East Phoenix technicians undergo extensive training to earn their certifications through the IICRC in water damage restoration and continue these educational opportunities through in-house certification courses and applied hands-on instruction to become well-equipped for any facet of restoration they might have to address in the field. This gives us a distinct advantage in water damage assessment to efficiently inspect for potential concerns beyond easily visible issues.
Advanced technologies help address water damage issues
To accomplish the water damage restoration work that SERVPRO does for every water damage project we begin, we rely on the advanced technologies at our disposal. These tools help to make the restoration process more efficient and offers the homeowner peace of mind that the job is getting done correctly and thoroughly. Our moisture detection equipment is a good example of this, as these tools help to show pockets of moisture the eye cannot see without tearing out materials unnecessarily. The combined use of our air moving equipment and industrial-strength dehumidifiers can have a fast and powerful effect on drying out your home. Air movers force water embedded into materials like the cabinetry and walls, as well as other items, out into the air to get removed as a vapor by the dehumidification equipment we use. This helps avoid potential issues with mold and mildew that could otherwise grow from residual moisture.
We specialize in water damage
Our goal is to provide fast and professional water damage restoration services for any situation that might exist within your Phoenix property. You can trust our SERVPRO of East Phoenix technicians to utilize the full measure of their training and industry-leading equipment to resolve your water damage quickly. If you have experienced water damage in your home, don’t try to address it yourself. Give us a call at (602) 507-6163 to get the help you need.
Why Sump Pumps Fail
While basements in Arizona may not be as common as other states, there are still quite a few homes that have basements, which means they also have sump pumps. Sump pumps drainage systems often employed in the basements to protect homes from the harmful effects of flooding and water damage by pumping water out of the basement. The failure of a home’s sump pump can be catastrophic, threatening the safety of a home’s important documents, objects, and furniture. You can take actions to prevent your house from suffering a sump pump failure by understanding various reasons as to why sump pumps might fail in the first place.
Lack of regular maintenance
Your risk of a sump pump failure is increased when your unit isn’t undergoing proper maintenance on a regular basis. Make sure to regularly check that your sump pump’s vents, and other parts are working properly and consider running a vinegar solution through the unit for cleaning in order to keep things running smoothly. Most sump pump models should be cleaned once a year but check your manual for more detailed information.
Age of sump pump
It is also important to be aware of how old your sump pump is. Since sump pumps undergo their fair share of wear and tear over the years, it is not uncommon for sump pumps to fail after seven to ten years, depending on the unit. You can prevent a damaging failure by keeping a closer eye on your sump pump as it nears this age range and consider replacing the unit if it begins to malfunction or appears to not work as well as it used to. Otherwise, you may end up with a flooded basement in need of professional water removal services.
Power outage or power failure
Sump pumps are also at a greater risk for failure during monsoon season and the summer months in general due to those unpredictable storms. Storms can serve as a big threat for sump pumps as they often bring large amounts of rain and occasionally, power outages. Without electricity, sump pumps will not be able to complete their job of pumping rainwater away from the home. Hooking your home’s sump pump up to a backup generator can help your sump pump continue to run smoothly and avoid a failure.
What to do if your sump pump fails
If your basement experiences a sump pump due to one of the above situations, or any other mitigating circumstance, contact SERVPRO of East Phoenix at 602-507-6163 to get immediate help with water removal and restoration.
What New Homeowners in AZ Should Understand About Monsoons
The Valley of the Sun continues to be a destination for out-of-state people looking to buy homes in Arizona. Though they may have experienced snowstorms where they came from, few understand how damaging monsoon storms can be. Here are a few things new homeowners in AZ should understand about monsoons and the damage they can cause.
Flash flooding can cause anywhere from a moderate amount of damage to your property to substantial damage. Because of Phoenix's unique geographic location, it is vulnerable to the remnants of tropical storms, which originate from Pacific ocean and make their way to our fair state. The amount of water from these storms is fast and furious, which can lead to flash floods. Away from your home, head all flash flood warnings and signage. Make sure your home has proper drainage so excess water doesn’t permeate your home. Flash flooding is just one of the many ways that these storms can impact specific areas of the state.
High winds damage
Storm damage can be extraordinarily damaging to your home, regardless of whether it’s old or new, one story or two story. High winds and flying debris can break a window and allow the water to enter. It can tear apart roofs and rip off rain gutters. It can uproot trees that can fall on your home, vehicle, or wall. As the winds from the storm recedes and some of the water goes with it, the damage might seem like it is ending. While the remainder of the situation can seem like nothing more than a massive mess to clean up, that is not always the case. With high winds and water, undetected and unaddressed water can result in mold so be sure to inspect the damage thoroughly from the wind as well as the water that may have entered your home.
Floodwaters are not always clean; in fact, they can often come teaming with chemicals, pesticides, petroleum products, and sewage depending on where they came from. When the water becomes mixed with such things, disposing of it is not a job for an amateur. When black water or otherwise compromised water floods your home, it is best to call SERVPRO because we have the proper equipment and tools to deal with the problem. If left unaddressed, flood water can ruin furnishings in your house. It is essential to understand and know what possessions and materials are safe to keep and dry out inside of your home, and what is not. SERVPRO can sort through your belongings and advise you on what you can and what you should not keep. It is best to be safe, rather than sorry in these situations as remaining in contact with black water is unsafe for your health.
Homeowners new to AZ are often taken by surprise by the amount of damage caused by monsoons. When storm damage strikes your Phoenix home, as soon as you are able, call SERVPRO of East Phoenix so that we can assist you with the damage and get your house back to normal. Call us today (602) 507-6163.
How Water Condensation Can Cause Big Problems in Your Home
Monsoons are coming soon to the Phoenix area and with them, all the potential damage to homes. In addition to flooding, water condensation from a storm can lead to secondary damage and cause more damage than the original loss. Learn more about how water condensation can cause big problems in your home.
How humidity damages homes
One issue most Phoenix homeowners rarely think about is humidity, as the Valley tends to be a very dry place with little moisture in the air. However, when the relative humidity rises significantly as it does after major storms, so does the potential for damage. So, what is relative humidity? The relative humidity is the amount of water vapor in the air. Relative humidity refers to the amount of water in the air compared to the total amount it could contain at a specific temperature. How can humidity damage homes? High humidity can cause problems in your home if relative humidity regularly exceeds 60%. When the air contains water vapor above that level, mold and mildew start to grow, while excess moisture can cause rot, damaging your belongings.
Mold can be more damaging than the eye can see
Mold spores thrive on moisture. Mold spores can quickly grow into colonies when exposed to water. These colonies may produce allergens and irritants. Mold spores are microscopic and float along in the air and may enter your home through windows, doors, or AC/heating systems or even hitch a ride indoors on your clothing or a pet. Higher-than-normal indoor humidity can support mold growth. Keep indoor humidity below 45 percent. Most homeowners may not even know they have a mold problem until they smell that musty odor in their home. Mold can hide under carpets, in attics and behind walls, and can be tough to battle. Because of high humidity during monsoons, homeowners see an increase in mold issues.
How SERVPRO helps with mold from humidity
SERVPRO of East Phoenix has a specific process for dealing with mold issues in a home. First, we inspect and assess mold damage, looking for those areas that are out of sight such as attics and behind walls to ensure we get a full picture of the issue. We then focus on mold containment to stop the mold from spreading any further. Next is air filtration. Our specialized filtration equipment allows our Professionals to capture microscopic mold spores out of the air. We utilize powerful “air scrubbers” and HEPA vacuums to prevent the spread of these mold spores while the mold remediation is in process. Depending on the situation, we then turn to removing mold and mold-infested materials such as carpeting, drywall, etc. Finally, we clean and restore all possessions impacted by mold to get your home back to normal.
If you suspect your home has mold, reach out to SERVPRO
If water condensation has caused mold or other issues in your home, call us today at (602) 507-6163. We are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for all of your cleaning and restoration needs.