Three Categories of Water Damage
A water loss can escalate quickly, if left untreated mold can grow within 48 hours and the damage can escalate even further from there.
Did you know that water damage is actually a very broad term for a water loss?
There are actually three different Categories of water losses that can occur, and with each category of damage comes a different remediation process. Not only that, but a once simple water loss can be turned into a category three nightmare by waiting to remediate before it is too late. There are a lot of different things that can go into water losses, and the categories they are classified as, but a very basic overview is below so you can know the difference between Category 1, 2, and 3 water losses.
Category 1: "Clean Water"
Category 1 water is from a clean source like a broken water supply line or leaking faucet. If not treated quickly, this water can turn into category 2 or 3, depending on length of time, temperature, and contact with surrounding contaminants.
Water from a clean source like a broken water line
If left untreated, can degrade into category 2 or 3
Category 2: "Gray Water"
Category 2 water is contaminated and could cause discomfort or illness. Examples include washing machine overflow; toilet overflow with some urine, but no feces; or dishwasher overflow.
May contain bacteria and viruses
Can quickly degrade into category 3 if left untreated
Category 3: "Black Water"
Category 3 water is grossly contaminated and could cause health issues. Examples include flooding from rivers or streams, water from beyond the toilet trap, water from the toilet bowl with feces, or standing water that has begun to support microbial growth.
May contain untreated sewage, harsh chemicals, disease-causing bacteria, and flesh-eating microbes
Water from flooding rivers or sewer backup
As you can see, each job is a different one, and the circumstances for each loss can change depending on what caused the loss, how long it was sitting before being remediated, and how contaminated the water is, so the remediation process can differ depending on what is required.
A certified water restoration technician such as the ones we employ at SERVPRO of Stone Oak, is trained on how to accurately classify a water loss, so that remediation can be performed effectively and safely.
Don't Wait.... Remediate!!
Hurricane Harvey dropped more than 20 Trillion Gallons of water on Texas and Louisiana last August. As the anniversary of the immense devastation that wrecked the Gulf Coast last year looms, we remember those whose lives were drastically changed by catastrophe. Houston as a city pushes on, to rebuild and to remember, and to honor those who are no longer with us. Not only will we remember the devastation, but we will also remember those who put those into harms way just to help the victims with nowhere to go. The amount of support that came from surrounding areas was immense, and we should all take a moment to thank those people as well. Altogether Hurricane Harvey changed so many people's lives and wrecked so much damage, and as this anniversary passes, let us take a moment to think of the victims, as well as the survivors of this tragedy.
Summer Fun & Cookout Tips
Summer Cookouts is everyone's favorite passtime, but it can also be a major fire hazzard.
General grilling tips:
- Propane and charcoal BBQ grills should only be used outdoors.
- The grill should be placed well away from the home, deck railings and out from under eaves and overhanging branches.
- Keep children and pets away from the grill area.
- Keep your grill clean by removing grease or fat buildup from the grills and in trays below the grill.
- Never leave your grill unattended.
Before you use your grill:
- Check the major connection points between the gas (propane) tank hose and the regulator and cylinder, and where the hose connects to the burners. Tighten if loose.
- Check the gas (propane) tank hose for the potential (gas) leaks. To do that:
- Apply a light soap and water solution to the hose using a brush or spray bottle.
- Turn the propane tank on. If there is a gas leak, the propane will release bubbles around the hose (big enough to see).
- If there are no bubbles, your grill is safe to use.
- If there are bubbles, turn off the tank and check connections, then have your grill serviced by a professional before using it again.
- If the leak doesn’t stop, call the fire department immediately.
When the grill is on:
- As you are cooking, if you smell gas, turn off the gas tank and burners.
- If the leak stops immediately, get the grill serviced by a professional before using it again.
- If the smell continues, move away from the grill and call the fire department immediately. Do not move the grill.
On average, 8,900 home fires are started by grilling accidents each year. Grill smart and you can make sure that your home isn't one of them.
What is Secondary Damage?
Something even as simple as a small pipe leak can cause secondary damage that could have to force you to tear out all affected cabinetry and drywall.
After water leaks or flood damage, if not properly dried and treated, a home or business can develop mold from the moisture left on: wood, tile, carpeting, windows, concrete, and/or other materials/items that were affected. Sometimes mold can grow in as little as 24-48 hours of not being dried down properly, creating secondary damage.
Have you had secondary damage as a result of an incorrectly handled water loss? Call us today and see how we can help!
SERVPRO of Stone Oak strives to prevent secondary damage every time we remediate water damage. How do we do this? Building material and flooring are dried and treated to prevent mold and other allergens/contaminates using specialized equipment and cleaning products.
Should you ever suffer water damage due to: a water heater leak, sink overflow, fire, refrigerator leak, excessive rain, storm damage, leaky roof, flood damage, or any other reason water has invaded your home or business, please know that SERVPRO of Stone Oak is here to help!
Commercial Cleaning Services
SERVPRO of Stone Oak is very experienced in many different types of cleaning and restoration.
Most business owners are so busy building their businesses and managing their employees that they don’t have the time to clean their offices, and having a custodian who cleans up after everyone can be an expense that not everyone wants to pay. SERVPRO of Stone Oak is experienced with working in commercial and small business environments, and can perform the following cleaning services:
- Air Ducts and HVAC
- Mold Remediation
- Biohazard and Sewage
- Trauma and Crime Scene
- Water Damage Remediation
- Carpet and Upholstery
- Ceilings, Walls, and Hard Floors
- Odor Removal and Deodorization
- Vandalism Removal
- Fire Cleanup
Call your local SERVPRO of Stone Oak at (210) 858-9696 to get more information on the types of cleaning services we can provide for your business!
Hurricanes are coming!
A hurricane is a type of storm called a tropical cyclone, which forms over tropical or subtropical waters according to the National Ocean Service.
The hurricane season is upon us, so be sure to pay attention to the news when they begin to announce what storms have formed and what their trajectories are. Although there is not much you can do to stop a storm from heading your direction, there is plenty that you can do to help prevent additional damage to your home if you are in the hurricane's path. According to the Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management, here are some things you should be doing at the beginning of every hurricane season.
- Keep handy a supply of lumber, plywood, timber, etc. for battening down purposes.
- Check thoroughly the roof of your house, hurricane shutters, hooks and latches and repair where necessary.
- Trim trees that touch power lines or hang over the house and other buildings.
- Have simple first-aid equipment such as iodine, bandages, eye lotion, etc. at home.
- Latch down securely all small buildings in the yard such as outdoor kitchens, pit latrines, tool sheds, barns, etc.
- Keep the number for a great, professional, experienced restoration company on hand and somewhere safe, that way you can contact us if you end up needing our services.
These tips will not prevent any damage from a hurricane from occurring at all, but they can definitely help mitigate that damage that could possibly occur and help save you money in the process! Not everyone is in a storm’s pathway, but if you are, please, be sure to take precautions and be on alert this hurricane season! If you do happen to live in a storm-ridden area take these recommendations into consideration and ensure that you have someone there when you need them.
5 Effective Ways to Prevent Water Loss:
This home was flooded as a result of a bathtub overflow, which is why you should never leave a faucet running if you are not watching it.
Although the summer is upon us and we are now experiencing our usual summer heatwave, water damage preparation should not be pushed out of your mind just because there is not a heavy amount of rainfall. Most water damage claims in fact, are not caused or related to heavy rain at all, and are typically an issue that comes from a malfunction in an appliance, bathtub, toilet, etc. With that being said, what can you do to prevent a water-related loss? Here are 5 effective ways to help prevent water losses:
1. Checking the water bill
One might not know where there is a leak due to the numerous water pipes hidden behind walls and in the floors in the building until the damage is done. That's why it's advisable to keep a close eye on the monthly water bill. If it is getting unusually high, it's a good sign that there may be a leak somewhere that may cause water in home to overflow.
2. Use a drain snake instead of unclogging chemicals
Clogs will always be there no matter what. People often go for powerful chemical drain cleaners to get things moving again. But as convenient as they may be, those caustic chemicals eat away at pipes. Over-reliance on them could cause more flood damage when doing water cleanup. For that reason, owning a drain snake is a good solution to clear away clogs. They’re affordable and can be found at hardware stores.
3. Avoid pouring grease down the sink
Avoid pouring grease down the kitchen sink even if it is flushed down with hot or cold water. The grease could still conceal and cling to the pipes, causing some grave flood damage and blockage. Breaking down the grease with detergent before a water clean-up may be a mitigation procedure but does not guarantee that it’ll prevent the oil from sticking to the pipes.
4. Don't leave the room after you've turned on the water, especially full force in the bathtub or a sink.
While it may not be for very long, running the water and leaving the room is a common cause for many water losses of a great scale. Many people turn on the bathtub and fall asleep, or begin the dishes and forget, causing water to flood an entire home very quickly, and if not extracted immediately, it can cause immense damage.
5. Know and follow the recommended maintenance procedures for your appliances
Water heater and other appliance related losses are very common, and a great way to help prevent them, although they may be unexpected at times, there are little things you can do to help prevent water losses, such as periodically draining the water heater to clean out the sediment at the bottom of the tank.
In the even that you or a loved one does have a water loss, or you need information on what to do if one happens, feel free to call SERVPRO of Stone Oak at (210)-858-9696.
Firework Safety Tips:
Fireworks can be one of the best memories of a great holiday like Fourth of July, as long as they are used in a safe manner.
This time of year everyone is preparing for the fourth of July festivities, getting the meat for the BBQ, reserving picnic spots, and rounding up the family for a fun holiday celebrating Independence day the right way! The one thing to remember is that everyone also needs to ensure that they are being safe and responsible when using fireworks too.
According to the National Fire Protection Association, in 2013, fireworks caused an estimated 15,600 reported fires in the U.S. with more than one-quarter (28%) of fires started by fireworks in 2009-2013 were reported on Independence Day. No one wants to rain on the parade, but it is always better to be prepared for the worst so everyone can have an enjoyable and worry-free time this Independence day. Take a quick look at the link below, provided by the National Council of Firework Safety, for tips to help factor into your holiday planning.
Firework Safety Tips!
In the event that you, or someone you know ends up having a house fire in the San Antonio area, call SERVPRO of Stone Oak at (210)-858-9696 to have an experienced, professional help ease you through the remediation process.
Preparation is Key!
Pictured is Beltway 8 in Houston, Texas after the immense flooding during Hurricane Harvey.
While it isn’t quite the hurricane season yet, it is still a great time to consider how well protected your home is. With floods being one of the most common natural disasters in the country, it is always a good idea to be prepared in the case that your home could be flooded. Here is a list of questions to ask yourself very quickly:
- Do you know your flood risk?
- Does your family have a contingency plan in place in the event that your home is flooded?
- Do you have flood insurance?
The main thing to know, is that floods do not just happen as a result of a hurricane, or because you live near a body of water. While certain factors can make you more likely to be at risk, it is good to know that floods can happen anywhere, at any time. They can be caused by a whole list of factors, and often occur suddenly, causing immense amounts of damage. This is why planning ahead in the event of a flood is the best idea, so that you know who to call and you can get a jumpstart of the long process of remediation. No one wants to consider the possibility of having their home involved in a flood event, but it is always better to be prepared for anything instead of caught off-guard. For more information on how to prepare yourself for the upcoming hurricane season, take a look at Ready.gov's webpage on flooding. If you or your family has a home that was involved in a flood event, call (210)-858-9696 to see how we can help!
All About Mold
Mold can spread rapidly after a water loss,and can cause devastating damage, especially if it is left unchecked!
Mold can be a sneaky, invisible, intruder, growing behind and around what you can see on the surface. Exposure to mold can cause allergies, skin irritation, and a host of other health problems. If you don’t know very much about what you’re up against, here are some basic facts about mold:
- Mold is present almost everywhere, indoors and outdoors.
- Mold spores are microscopic and float along in the air.
- Mold often produces a strong, musty odor and can lead you to possible mold problem areas.
- Common Types of mold are:
- Before mold remediation can begin, any sources of water or moisture must be addressed. Otherwise, the mold may return.
- Mold spores thrive on moisture. Mold spores can quickly grow into colonies when exposed to water. These colonies may produce allergens and irritants.
For more information, Check out the EPA’s Interactive Mold House Tour!
Mold remediation is a serious job that is best handled by the results of a professional mold inspector, followed up by a licensed mold remediation specialist. A home owner is unlikely to have access to all of the specialized equipment needed to complete such a task. With specialized equipment used and the expertise shown by the professional team at SERVPRO of Stone Oak, insurance companies trust our team when their policy holders experience a water loss.
Feel free to give us a call at (210)-858-9696 to help you get started remediating your mold problem!