Recent Posts

Heavy Winds

6/13/2019 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Heavy Winds Is your home or business ready for heavy winds?

Heavy winds can damage literally hundreds of trees and create dangerous conditions.

Additionally, heavy winds can cause power outages.

Prepare BEFORE Heavy Winds strikes

  • Being proactive, and having a first aid kit--with fresh, non-expired products--both in your home and vehicles,
  • Walking your property during fair weather days, looking for ill and diseased trees,
  • Hanging or cracked branches which are extremely large and heavy.

If you note any of these things, seek out estimates to address and solve these problem trees BEFORE heavy, inclement weather arrives.

Also, consider how you and your family would function if you lost power due to heavy winds.

  • Do you have candles and flash lights with working batteries, and an extra sets of batteries?  
  • Blankets, and dry or pre-packaged food supplies for 2 or 3 days?
  • Don't forget water--assume one gallon per day for each person and animal.

If your home or business has experienced storm damage after heavy rains and winds please contact SERVPRO of North Washington County to clean up and restore. 

A Step by Step Guide on What to Expect With a Toilet Replacement

6/13/2019 (Permalink)

Water Damage A Step by Step Guide on What to Expect With a Toilet Replacement If you have a leaking toilet in Donora, PA, you may be worried about possible water damage

A Step by Step Guide on What to Expect With a Toilet Replacement

If you have a leaking toilet in Donora, PA, you may be worried about possible water damage. A professional can look over the leak to learn where and how extensive the damage is. When repairing your toilet here are a few steps you can expect to see the professional perform.

1. Turn Off the Water

The first step to toilet repair is to turn off the water to the area. Depending on the toilet type the professional performing your repairs may simply be able to turn off the water supply line directly to the toilet.

2. Drain the Water

After the water is off it's important to drain away any water left in the toilet. This can be done by holding down the flash lever until the tank is empty. Any remaining water can be mopped up with a sponge. Doing so will help prevent further water damage.

3. Disconnect the Water Supply Line

Once your leaking toilet has been drained, the professional performing your repairs can disconnect the water supply line. This should consist of loosening the compression nut and removing the closet bolts.

4. Remove the Toilet

Once the unit has been disconnected, the toilet can be removed. Doing so can allow a water damage restoration service to see where and how extensive any water damage caused by the leak is. Any repairs necessary should be conducted now.

5. Replace Needed Parts

With the old toilet removed any parts necessary can now be replaced. If you have an older unit you may want to replace the toilet entirely. Talk to the professional overseeing your repairs about any water damaged places, the cause of the leak, and any recommendations they may have to help prevent such problems in the future.
If you believe you have a leaking toilet there are few steps you can expect the repair process to contain. The water should be turned off and drained before the toilet is removed. After which the unit itself or any broken parts can be replaced. If you have any water damage or questions about the process, a professional may be able to help.

4 Steps to Take Before a Storm

6/8/2019 (Permalink)

If you are expecting a storm in North Washington County, and want to protect your home and family, there are several steps that you should follow. Flood water can cause quite a bit of damage and can compromise your safety, so keep these tips in mind during bad weather.

Have a Safety Plan

One of the most important things to do before a storm is to create a plan. You should know what you will do if the power goes out or, if the storm is severe, what you will do in the case of a flooded building. Consider all possibilities and be prepared.

Check Doors and Windows

To protect your home from water damage, you should make sure all of your doors and windows are properly sealed. A loose or broken seal can allow water to get inside, and even a small amount can cause problems. It is a good idea to perform regular maintenance on your home to prevent this.

Inspect the Outside of the House

If you have cracks in the exterior of your house, moisture can build up inside of the walls and damage the structure of the building. It can also contribute to the growth of mold. This fungus spreads quickly in dark, moist environments and can cause both discoloration and a musty odor.

Create an Emergency Kit

Depending on the type and severity of the storm, the contents of your emergency kit may vary. Some useful items to include are flashlights, radios, batteries, canned foods, and bottled water. Flood water can cause contamination, so you shouldn’t consume anything it touches.

Being prepared can help keep both your family and your home safe. However, if you do experience damage from a storm or flood water, a water damage remediation specialist can help get your home back to its previous condition. They can perform remediation, make repairs and restore damaged belongings.

3 Reasons Wildfires Could Lead to More Floods

6/5/2019 (Permalink)

There are a lot of natural disasters that can affect the North Washington County area. From floods to wildfires, you never know what's going to strike. Did you know that after a wildfire your area could actually be at a higher risk for flooding? The National Flood Insurance Program can help you better understand your risk of flooding. Check out these three reasons you could see more flooding after a wildfire from the FEMA NFIP.

No More Vegetation

One major component of wildfire damage is burned vegetation. Plants actually help take in water. When the vegetation is burnt away, the ground is now expected to soak up all of the rain that falls in the area. When the water no longer has anywhere to go, you may need a storm damage restoration professional.

New Terrain

The fires can even cause the terrain in your area to change. What was once solid ground can become weaker thanks to the new charred and barren features. You may notice that the top soil is swept away in heavy rains, which can mean that any flooding that does take place includes rocks and other potentially damaging debris. Because of the increased damage potential of floods after a wildfire, the FEMA NFIP suggests you update your flood insurance after any wild burnings.

Less Absorption

Not only does the decrease in vegetation lead to less water absorption, but so does the new soil. Fires can turn healthy top soil into ash. The burned ground actually acts a lot like pavement in that it does not let the rain water into the ground. With this increased run off, you may notice more standing water in your area even after light rains. Flooding damage then becomes more of a risk for your home because the water has nowhere else to go.

Wildfires don't always lead to flooding, but according to the FEMA NFIP, they could increase your future risk of floods. Because it takes a while for an environment to bounce back after fires, you could have an increased risk of flooding for at least five years.

Securing Your Building Post-Fire

6/5/2019 (Permalink)

Is your North Washington County, commercial property suffering after a fire? If you are planning on seeking help from a local fire damage restoration company, you are already on the right track. But you also need to keep your building safe in the meantime. Follow these three steps to make sure looting does not affect your business in the aftermath of a commercial fire.

Identify and Secure Open Spaces

Survey your building very carefully when beginning your fire cleanup efforts. Ensure that all windows, doors and other open spaces are securely locked. Next, make sure that you purchase some sturdy boards that will be sufficiently protective for the type of opening that you are securing. The length of time you expect the boards to be in place should also influence what type of covering you buy.

Research Further Options

While waiting to repair fire damage to your building, you may want to invest in some fencing for added security. This really depends on whether or not you feel that your building is in an area prone to heavy looting, as well as the amount of time you expect your business to be shut down for.

Consider Advanced Security Options

If you feel that your company’s geographical area is highly unsafe or expect you will be closed for a very long time, security services or a high-tech alarm may be the way to go. These options allow your building to be secured when you are not physically available to keep a close watch.

Don’t Get Intimidated

Fire damage is stressful enough without worrying about highly customizable security options. You need to focus on fixing any destruction first and foremost, so if you think complicated security measures are out of the question logistically or financially, stick with basic, reliable boards that will keep your North Washington County business protected not only from criminal activity, but also the unpredictable natural elements.

How To Identify Black Mold in Your Home

5/30/2019 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation How To Identify Black Mold in Your Home Stachybotyrs chartarum is one of the most common types of mold found inside people’s home.

Stachybotrys chartarum, better known as black mold, is type of mold that often causes alarm when found in homes during a mold inspection. Finding any type of mold in your home in Strabane, PA, requires immediate action. With the help of a mold remediation specialist, you can control any type of mold you find in your home and repair the damage it has caused. Use this guide to learn how you can identify stachybotrys chartarum.

Different Types of Mold

If you have discovered house mold, there are over 100,000 species of mold that it can be. These species vary in color and appearance and have a variety of causes and effects on both the human body and your home. The most common types of mold found during a mold inspection include:

  • Alternaria
  • Aureobasidium
  • Asperigillus
  • Stachbotrys chartarum
  • Chaetomium
  • Cladosporium
  • Penicillium
  • Trichoderma

The Truth About Black Mold

Stachybotyrs chartarum is one of the most common types of mold found inside people’s home. While you might assume that this species of mold is black due to its nickname, this mold is not always black. Often, this mold will be dark green in color. It is also important to note that there are many other types of mold that are black in color, including Cladosporium. The best way to identify stachybotyrs in your home by having a mold test done during a mold inspection.

This type of mold requires a lot of moisture to survive. It is most commonly found in areas dealing with severe water damage, leaks, flooding, and excessive humidity where constant moisture if present. It grows on materials like paper, dust, fiberboard, lint, and gypsum board which have a low nitrogen and high cellulose content.

It can be hard to identify black mold on your own, so you’ll need to have a mold test performed for a more accurate identification. However, all types of mold are problematic and can be dealt with by a remediation specialist.

Electric Shock Drowning

5/28/2019 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO Electric Shock Drowning Pool Safety

Don't let summer fun turn to tragedy. Electric shock drownings are a hidden danger in swimming pools, hot tubs and spas, and around boats, marinas, and launch ramps.

Electric shock drowning (ESD) can occur when faulty wiring sends an electrical current into the water. The current then passes through the body, causing paralysis, and results in drowning.

Life saving measures such as ground-fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) protection and all grounding and bonding systems are functioning properly.

Pool Safety

Just a reminder that with such a rainy summer season in Hanover Township, PA this year, keep your eye on the sky for incoming storm events and rain. Thunder and lightening are best seen from inside the house, not inside the pool or hot tub.  Error on the side of caution, and get out of the water.

Removing Cigarette Smoke from Your Home

5/22/2019 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Removing Cigarette Smoke from Your Home Contact a smoke remediation specialist in the Cross Creek, PA, area

How do You Get Rid of Cigarette Smoke Odor?

While the health concerns of smoking are well-known and documented, people often forget about the damage cigarette smoke can do to your home. Discolored walls, stains on the ceiling and burn marks in the carpeting are only a few of the issues. However, one of the most significant complaints is likely about the lingering smell of cigarettes. While there are some home deodorization products available in the stores, most of these products are odor cover-ups and nothing more. Therefore, how do you get rid of the odor altogether? If you’re not ready to call in a professional service, there are a few things you can try.

1. HVAC System Cleaning

It is true that the thorough cleaning of your HVAC system likely requires a professional, but there are a few things you can do on your own. First, you can replace the filters. Then, you can look into vent filters. There are also scented HVAC filters that will help cover any persistent odor.

2. Vinegar and Baking Soda

One home deodorization method that is pretty popular is using a vinegar and water mixture on nonporous items and baking soda on porous items. Both are supposed to be left to dry or absorb for a while, but then can be wiped or vacuumed up. While these methods have worked for several people, some do not find them that effective.

3. Coffee Sachet

A coffee sachet is basically a sac filled with coffee grounds. The grounds of the coffee are supposed to be odor absorbent and can, therefore, be used to absorb the cigarette odor in your home.

4. Professional Cleaning

If the home solutions are not working, you can contact a smoke remediation specialist in the Cross Creek, PA, area. These professionals have experience in deodorization and will likely be able to get your home back to smelling normal.

While there are some DIY home deodorization methods, they do not always prove to be effective against every odor. Therefore, if you or your loved ones are heavy smokers, then you may be better off with a professional cleaning service.

4 Tips for Commercial Roof Maintenance

5/11/2019 (Permalink)

Storm Damage 4 Tips for Commercial Roof Maintenance Always be sure to clean your gutters

Use the Following Tips for Proper Roof Upkeep

The roof is an important part of your Hanover Township, PA, building, but it might not be something that you often think about. Keeping your roof in good condition is an easy way to protect your building, as roof damage can contribute to problems in other areas.

1. Waterproof Your Roof

Water can cause a lot of damage to your building, from mold growth to warping walls. One way to prevent this is to seal your roof against water. This will make it less likely for your roof to be damaged during a storm or severe weather and will protect against leaks that might otherwise affect the floors underneath.

2. Have Regular Inspections

Proper maintenance requires inspections. This should be done at least a couple times each year to catch any roof damage before it becomes severe. If you see any cracks or broken areas, you should have these addressed immediately. It might be a good idea to hire a commercial building restoration service to conduct these inspections and perform any needed repairs.

3. Keep Your Roof Clean

One of the easiest ways to prevent damage and the need for a roof rebuild is to simply keep the area clean. If there are heavy rains, having debris on the roof can prevent the water from properly draining. This can result in pooling which can cause leaks and a weakened building structure. Always be sure to clean any drains and gutters as well.

4. Maintain the Area Around the Roof

The surrounding area can be just as important as the building itself. Severe storms with high winds can result in trees falling onto the roof and can also cause debris build-up. Trimming any nearby trees and keeping the area clean can help prevent this roof damage from occurring.

From wind damage to heavy rains, there are many factors that can contribute to damage of your roof. Keep it well-maintained to limit problems and prevent the rest of your building from being affected.

Can SERVPRO help with any size commercial loss?

4/29/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of North Washington County is able to help with any size mold, fire or water damage project. Their team of qualified individuals are the fastest and most trained professionals in the restoration industry. Many of their team members are IICRC certified and can handle any type of loss from start to finish.

No matter the size of the job, SERVPRO of North Washington County is ready to respond and get your facility back to pre loss condition. Timing is extremely important, to make sure that the damages are mitigated and do not continue to expand.

SERVPRO of North Washington County has the manpower and equipment to get the job done correctly the first time. Each step of the way, our team carefully documents and takes plenty of photos. Once the job is complete, they provide all records to you. This can be valuable for your insurance company if any questions come up in the future.

If you have any questions, do not hesitate to reach out to us at anytime. We are always here to help!