Recent Water Damage Posts

What To Do If a Pipe Bursts in Your Commercial Building

3/7/2022 (Permalink)

Wet insulation hanging from ceiling, water damage on ceiling in a commercial building Water damage in a building in Houston, TX.

What Should You Do If a Pipe in Your Commercial Building Bursts?

Older commercial properties are particularly broken to frozen pipes. However, this phenomenon can occur in newer buildings as well. Water flowing through any cold, uninsulated pipes may freeze into ice. As the ice expands, it can put pressure on the pipes until they break. This could lead to massive water damage in Houston, TX. If you do encounter bursting pipes, here are some steps you should take.

1. Shut Off the Water and Electricity

The water will continue to escape from the burst pipe until you shut off the main valve. Make sure that everyone in the building knows where this valve is. You should also turn off the electricity in the damaged part of the property. This will prevent electrocution during the drying process.

2. Call a Professional

A broken pipe can leave you with a huge puddle of water in your building. The water may also soak your walls, carpets or ceilings. Over time, this could lead to the growth of mold that causes even further damage. You thus need to contact emergency cleanup professionals as soon as you discover the bursting pipes. Look for a company that provides 24-hour service. Even a few-hour delay could have severe consequences.

3. Take Preventative Measures

Once the cleanup is complete, talk to the experts about limiting additional pipe breaks. They can tell you how to spot and thaw frozen pipes before they burst. You can use warm washcloths or hair dryers to heat up the pipes. You may also want to keep a trickle of water flowing through the pipes at all times. This will stop the water from freezing.
Frozen pipes can flood your Houston, TX, property during the winter. If this happens to you, turn off the water immediately and contact experts who know how to fix broken pipe. The professionals can also help you prevent bursting pipes in the future.

2 Reasons To Call a Restoration Company After a Flood

2/23/2022 (Permalink)

Kitchen area, floor has been removed, two air movers plugged to an outlet. Cleaning up water damage should usually be left to a professional.

Fixing Broken Pipes

Bursting pipes can cause an incredible amount of damage in Bunker Hill Village, TX. Such damage can be extremely expensive, as you may need to completely rip out and restore large areas of your home. Even a single broken pipe can ruin nearly an entire room, and possible secondary damage can be even more devastating than obvious ruin from the water. When you need to fix a broken pipe and repair extensive damage, calling a qualified restoration company is usually the best idea.

Water Damage

Because most pipes are kept in hidden locations, you may not discover a broken pipe until extensive damage has already been done. Even small amounts of water left unattended can damage the following areas of your home:

  • Sheetrock
  • Baseboard
  • Hardwood floors
  • Carpet
  • Rugs
  • Insulation

Water damage may cause sheetrock to weaken and can even ruin insulation, resulting in expensive, time-consuming repairs. Expensive wood floors can be completely ruined when water soaks into the grain, causing floorboards to buckle and bow. The longer water stands unattended, the more damage it can do, so calling a restoration company immediately is usually the best way to minimize the problem.

Secondary Damage

While a lot of water damage is visible upon first inspection, you should investigate further to find any secondary damage that may have happened. Bursting pipes can cause many types of hidden damage, including:

  • Mold
  • Mildew
  • Bacteria

Mold, mildew and bacteria grow best in warm, dark environments, so if a broken pipe is not detected quickly, the fungus could spread rapidly until it is out of control. Household cleaners may not be strong enough to get rid of existing mold and mildew, so it is a good idea to leave the treatment to a restoration company.

While many people may be able to fix a broken pipe, cleaning up water damage should usually be left to a professional. With the help of a restoration company, dealing with bursting pipes in Bunker Hill Village, TX can be a quick and manageable process.

Repairing Broken Pipes Quickly

1/30/2022 (Permalink)

Man with a hammer making a hole on baseboards to introduce air equipment Water restoration after a pipe break.

Prevent Water Damage

No matter how many precautions you take, sometimes it’s not possible to prevent bursting pipes. After prevention, the best thing you can do is react quickly to start repairs when it’s time to fix a broken pipe. The faster you act, the more you can prevent water damage in Houston, TX.

Limit the Mold, Limit the Damage

When a pipe bursts, the first thing you need to do after checking with the insurance company is fixing the broken pipe. Once the hole is plugged or the broken pipe replaced, you can begin cleaning up the water and repairing the damage with these steps:

  • Call a professional to assess the damage
  • Remove standing water and remove any items that are saturated
  • Clean items that can be salvaged
  • Throw away items that are dangerous to use or consume

The faster you remove the water and the wet items, the more water damage in Houston, TX  you can prevent. This also limits the amount of mold growth you’ll experience, making your home safer and cleaner after the repair.

What To Keep, What To Throw Away

Unless you have black water flooding into your home, you should be able to clean most of your items and return them to use. Clothing or other cloth and canvas items need to be washed or dry cleaned. Floors should be sanitized and carpets cleaned. Any food or medical supplies should be thrown away and replaced. If you have black water in your home, you should throw away anything porous that was exposed, as those items can become breeding grounds for bacteria.

If you have water damage from a burst pipe in Houston, TX, the faster you move, the more damage you’ll be able to prevent. Getting your home and valuables cleaned, repaired or replaced as quickly as possible makes it easier to get back into all areas of your home quickly and safely.

5 Ways To Prevent Water Damage While Away From Home

12/30/2021 (Permalink)

Water gauge pressure, hand shut off main valve, close-up. Shut off the main water supply valve.

Avoid Water Damage While You Are Not At Home

A broken pipe or flooding can cause catastrophic water damage while you are away from home. It may be days or even weeks before you return to find your home flooded. You will then have to arrange for water pipe repair and damage cleanup. Here are five ways to avoid water damage while you are not at home.

1. Shut Off the Water

If your home will be vacant, reduce the risk of a broken pipe by shutting off the main water supply valve. Drain pipes by running faucets and flushing toilets. You may also turn off appliance water supply valves.

2. Clear the Gutters

Proper drainage can reduce the likelihood of leaks or flooding. You may also want to check for any signs of roof damage, such as missing or dislodged shingles.

3. Test the Sump Pump

In case of a sewer backup or flooding, make sure that the sump pump in a basement or crawlspace is working. If you do not already have a battery-powered backup, it is a good idea to install and test this feature prior to your trip.

4. Maintain a Safe Temperature

If you take a trip during the winter, maintain a consistent interior temperature of at least 50 to 55 degrees Fahrenheit to avoid the need for water pipe repair. Bump up the thermostat four degrees over the occupied setting during the warmer months.

5. Have Someone Check In

The best way to ensure your home remains safe and secure is to have someone you trust come over to check for signs of damage. If you are leaving on a long voyage, you may want to arrange for a housesitter.

These steps can reduce the risk of damage while you are away from home. If a pipe breaks, schedule water pipe repair as soon as possible. You should also arrange for a consultation with a water damage cleanup and restoration firm in Hilshire Village, TX.

What To Expect With a Flood Cut

11/22/2021 (Permalink)

Drywall removed, air movers placed on the floor Flood cuts were performed in a Bunker Hill Village, TX home.

What To Expect With a Flood Cut

Perhaps you stumbled across this advice while scanning the internet in a panic as your restoration professional began to punch holes in the drywall. Well, be assured that they are doing exactly what you need if you have experienced flooding in Bunker Hill Village, TX. They are likely beginning a flood cut, which sounds destructive, but is indeed a clever way to save much of your structure because:

  • It allows increased ventilation, reducing moisture in materials that can be salvaged.
  • It prevents the spread of damage since water and moisture can be drawn into other materials or further up your wall.
  • It keeps your home safe by removing biological and chemical contamination that may have been absorbed from flood water.

Certain building materials can be dried and salvaged, but you need to tear out wet drywall and insulation after a major flood. Since this is probably your first time to experience flooding, you may feel reassured to learn the steps for a flood cut:

  1. Floorboards and electrical plates are removed from the drywall.
  2. A mark is made across the wall, about 12-18 inches above the flood line.
  3. A utility knife is used to score the line.
  4. Holes may be punched in the damaged sections of the drywall.
  5. Reaching into the holes, the drywall is pulled and broken along the line.
  6. Wet insulation is removed, and the area is allowed to dry.
  7. An electrician may replace any wiring that was damaged by the flood.
  8. Insulation is replaced.
  9. Replacement drywall is cut and screwed into place.
  10. Drywall is taped and prepared for painting.

Now that you know what to expect, you can trust your professional flood recovery team when they say they need to cut your walls. Be confident that your home is going to quickly be cleaned and restored back to the condition it was in before flooding.

How To Restore Wet Documents

9/28/2021 (Permalink)

Wet documents Wet documents.

Document Recovery

Did you recently experience a burst pipe or similar flooding incident at your Hilshire Village, TX, business? If so, you may now be facing some very unfortunate water damage issues, including finding a host of wet documents. Some papers that you may find damaged by water include business files, financial records, and legal documents. Fortunately, help is available. If this flooded paperwork is highly important to you or your team on a professional level, you will want to learn about these three ways that restoration specialists handle document recovery.

1. Document Drying

If something is wet, the most natural solution is to dry it if possible in an attempt to save the item. Restoration professionals will often freeze-dry documents to make sure that they have the best chance of being recovered. Vacuum-based freeze-drying is often the best method to restore highly important business paperwork.

2. Deodorization and Sterilization

Since wet paper can be exposed to bacteria, mold colonies and other unwanted infections, most technicians will take steps to deodorize and sterilize wet documents after they are dried. Gamma irradiation is one technique that is often used with great success. Deodorizing and sterilizing help the papers to smell clean and be rid of any infestations.

3. Digital Storage

A full-service water damage company will offer you digitizing services so you can preserve your wet documents. This helps to protect you against future losses, and may allow you to maintain a record of any newly damaged documentation that could not be salvaged. As an extra bonus, you can choose to go paperless and free up storage space in your office if desired.

Understanding that help is available will help you to stay calm and hopeful when you find your business littered with soggy documents after a water disaster. It is better to get professional help than to attempt to fix what could be complex damage on your own.

Are Any Interior Finishes Salvageable After a Flood?

7/7/2021 (Permalink)

Drywall removal due to flood water Flooding due to sewage damage in Houston, TX home.
As a homeowner dealing with a flooded house in Houston, TX, you may have a lot of questions during the early stages of the restoration. Figuring out what you can and cannot save will help you get a better idea of how much the overall project will cost. For example, can swelling wood be salvaged? Because each situation may be different, you should talk with your residential water remediation experts to figure out what repairs your home requires.


The state of your flooring after a supply line flood may be warped and waterlogged. Whether you can save this piece of building material depends on the flooring you have and how long the waters sat in your home.

  • Wood Floors: May be saved if removed from the house and completely dried before replacing.
  • Carpets: May need to be thrown away if the water contains contaminants.
  • Tiles: May remain unharmed from the flood, but if possible could be removed to allow the subfloor to dry better.
  • Laminate: Water may get trapped under sheet flooring, which requires it to be replaced.

If the water has not caused your flooring to start to disintegrate, you may be able to save it. However, this restoration process can take weeks.


Because subflooring is often made of OSB or plywood, it will likely have to be replaced. The swelling wood could cause any floors you lay on top of the subfloor to bubble and buckle. Replacement is often the best option to ensure your new materials last as long as possible.


Drywall and insulation may get damaged during a flood. Because these materials are porous, they often have to be replaced during a water pipe repair. You may only need to replace the materials that get wet.

During a flood cleanup, you will likely have to replace a lot of building materials and interior finishes. Swelling wood and warped materials are often clear signs salvage is not possible.

3 Factors for Fixing a Flooded Basement

3/8/2021 (Permalink)

technician making holes on baseboard Speeding up the drying process.

3 Factors for Fixing a Flooded Basement

A basement flood requires urgent attention to prevent mold and structural damage. It is important to assess three factors, which may vary based on the cause of flooding and the design and location of a residence in Houston, TX.

1. How Much Water Is Present
The depth of standing water in a basement is an important consideration for determining the extent of the damage. Water deeper than an inch may pose a greater risk of structural damage. Depending on the source of water and whether you have flood or sewer backup insurance in addition to homeowners insurance coverage, it may be necessary to foot the restoration bill out of pocket.

2. Interior and Exterior Pressure
In the event of a basement flood, hydrostatic pressure may be important to assess and consider when setting a schedule for cleanup and restoration. Pumping water out too quickly can cause structural damage that results in leaks or even causes basement walls to collapse. Basement flooding experts can determine the right pace for pumping out water while preserving the integrity of your home.

3. The Category of Water Damage
As mentioned above, a basement flooded with outside water or sewer water may not be covered under by homeowners insurance. Sewer water may be Category Two gray water or Category Three black water. Both contain microbes, but Category Three damage also involves solid waste. It will be necessary to disinfect damage that results from exposure to any type of contaminated water.
It is important to extract water from a basement flood as soon as possible. It may not be possible to quickly pump out all of the standing water in a structure, as equalizing pressure levels may be necessary to prevent structural problems. The category of water damage will also determine insurance coverage and the extent of cleanup required for a flooded residential basement in Houston, TX.

Why Preventative Maintenance of Your Commercial Plumbing System Is Important

2/9/2021 (Permalink)

Man's hands unscrewing a screw-nut on a water heater with a wrench on a boiler Flushing the water heater is an important preventative maintenance step, as well.

Be Proactive With Your Plumbing System

A commercial building needs proper maintenance in order to function properly. The plumbing system is no exception. You need to take care of your pipes, sewers and drains to avoid any plumbing problems. In fact, there are several benefits of being proactive with your plumbing system. Preventative maintenance:

  • Keeps the pipes running properly
  • Limits water temperature spikes
  • Assures everything is up to code
  • Prolongs the life of your system

How Does Preventative Maintenance Save Money?
Perhaps most importantly, being proactive can help you financially. After all, fixing a water main can be expensive. Specifically, a broken pipe may necessitate costly water damage repair services.
Emergency cleanups are typically more expensive than regular maintenance calls are. You should thus have a professional regularly inspect your Hilshire Village, TX, property for potential issues.

What Does Preventative Maintenance Entail?
The preventative maintenance should start with your pipes. The professional should look for signs of corrosion or leaks. He or she can also test the water pressure within the building. Low pressure could be a sign of sediment buildup or other plumbing problems.
However, the plumber you choose should not only look at your pipes. The drains, water heater and sewers should be inspected, as well. Slow drainage may indicate a clog deep in the system. A professional can use advanced cameras to locate the problem and then break up the clog with high-pressure jets.
Commercial bathrooms are common locations for leaks. Have someone check the seals and gaskets in the toilets. The caulking in the toilets and sinks should also be inspected.
Flushing the water heater is an important preventative maintenance step, as well. Best of all, you can do this yourself. A professional can also inspect various parts of the heater, including the vent pipes and burners.
Frequent inspections of your pipes, toilets, water heater, drains and sewers should prevent plumbing problems. Even a small leak can cause lots of damage, so being proactive about water issues is cost-efficient.

How to Drain a Flooded Basement

12/30/2020 (Permalink)

A sump pump installed in a basement of a home with a water powered backup system. Rent a submersible pump

How to Drain a Flooded Basement

After a basement flood, draining the water away should be your first priority. If your home in Hilshire Village, TX, suffers a flood, removing the intrusion of water will be necessary before you can start on cleanup and repairs. If you choose to attempt the task yourself, there are a few key things to remember.

1. Wait for Flooding to Stop
If your basement was flooded by an actual flood or natural disaster, wait for the floodwater to recede before you attempt to drain the basement. If the basement flood was caused by a pipe burst or faulty appliance, make sure the water is turned off and flooding stopped before you begin to drain the water away. Draining water while it is still flowing is both dangerous and fruitless.

2. Rent a Submersible Pump
Hardware stores will likely have the same equipment that professionals would use available for rent. Rent a submersible pump and follow all safety procedures and instructions carefully. Extend the electrical cord to the generator up and away from the pump so that it does not touch the water. Attach a hose to the pump that is long enough to extend out of your home. Depending on the depth of the water, you may have to lower the pump into the water with a rope. To drain the water faster, use more than one pump.

3. Dry Everything Thoroughly
Anything that may have absorbed water is at risk for mold growth. This is not limited to belongings. Carpets, floors, walls, and porous ceilings that became water-logged in the flood should be professionally cleaned and dried or replaced. Depending on the cause of the flood and your insurance coverage, the cost of these repairs and replacements may be partially or wholly covered. Check with your provider to see what your specific coverage provides for.
If you'd prefer not to attempt to drain a basement flood yourself, many restoration professionals can help with draining away water after a flood as well as with cleanup and repairs after.

5 Steps To Cleaning Sewer Water

11/30/2020 (Permalink)

Sewer water on the floor A sewer backup can leave behind bacteria, viruses, and other contaminants

Sewer Cleanup Process

Sewer cleanup is one of the chores most homeowners dread doing. However, if contaminated water has invaded your home, it is extremely important to get the water cleaned up as quickly as possible. Whether sewer water comes from a storm, flooded toilet, burst pipe, or other sources, sewage contains contaminants that make the water unsafe. When dealing with large amounts of dirty water, there are several steps that are usually taken during the cleanup process.

1. Water Extraction
The first step in cleaning up after a flooded toilet or other disaster is to remove the excess water and solid waste. Professionals may use water extraction machines to dry the area quickly and minimize secondary water damage.

2. Removal of Damaged Items
Items that have come into contact with the water and sustained damage may need to be removed. During the sewer cleanup stage, damaged baseboards, walls, or other materials may be extracted from the residence and disposed of.

3. Moisture Removal
The quicker the area is dried, the less time mold and mildew have to form. Since some species of mold can begin forming in as little as 24-48 hours, professionals may use industrialized blowers to speed up the drying process.

4. Disinfection of Contact Surfaces
A sewer backup can leave behind bacteria, viruses, and other contaminants that can linger long after the water is gone. All items that come into contact with the water will need to be sanitized. Experts may use special biocides or cleaners to sanitize the area.

5. Restoration of the Room
During this final stage, your room will begin to look like it did before the incident happened. Any structural items that were removed will likely be replaced.
Sewer cleanup must be handled appropriately to ensure your home is safe and free of microbes. Call a professional water remediation company in Hilshire Village, TX, to help get your home back to normal as quickly as possible.

4 Tips for Preventing Water Damage While You're Away From Home

10/12/2020 (Permalink)

The pipelines in the insulation and pressure gauges flow and return pipes in the boiler room of a private house household Protect your pipes from freezing by insulating pipes

Follow These Tips To Decrease Chances Of Water Damage

A storm, leaking appliance, broken pipe, overflowing tub and flooded basement are events that can cause major harm to the belongings and structure of your Spring Valley, TX, home. Many of these disasters happen while homeowners are away on vacation or traveling for business. Fortunately, there are ways to prevent water damage while you’re away from home.

1. Check for Leaks
Before leaving your home for an extended period of time, check under sinks and inspect the plumbing. Look for any leaks or cracks in the pipes. If you’ve noticed low water pressure or issues with appliances or utilities, it’s time to contact a professional for water pipe repair.
You should also check your roof and around windows for leaks. You may need to re-caulk windows or repair shingles to prevent water damage.

2. Inspect Hoses and Sump Pumps
Kinked or damaged hoses can also cause water damage. Look at the lines connected to major appliances such as washing machines and dishwashers. If the hoses look damaged, it’s best to replace them.
If your home has a sump pump, check that it’s running properly. Run the pump for a while and listen for any strange sounds. Make sure that the water is being removed away from your home. Invest in a battery backup in case the power goes out while you’re gone.

3. Insulate Pipes During Cold Weather
Exposed pipes are most susceptible to freezing during cold winter months. Protect your pipes from freezing by insulating pipes with sleeves made from rubber or fiberglass. Failure to insulate your pipes may require water pipe repair.

4. Ask a Neighbor for Help
After you’ve visually inspected your home and performed any fixes, you can enlist the help of a neighbor. Ask a trusted friend to watch your home while you’re away. Explain where the water main is and how to turn it off. Ask the person to check the thermostat to ensure that the heat is coming on during the winter.
Following these tips should decrease your chances of water damage. If you do experience significant damage, after getting water pipe repair a water restoration specialist can help you with cleanup.

Understanding Category 1 Water Damage

8/15/2020 (Permalink)

Corner of a wall wet from the ceiling to the bottom due to broken pipe Broken pipe in Spring Valley, TX

There Are Three Primary Sources Of Clean Water Leaks

Commercial facilities typically combat a fair share of water issues throughout the year, from minor leaks to massive plumbing failures. Understanding when to call a remediation company in Spring Valley, TX, is paramount to saving money and staying within a maintenance budget. While most leaks and floods will require professional help, you may be able to handle clean water leaks on your own. There are three primary sources of clean water, or category one, leaks.

Supply line leak
Pipe break
Appliance leak

Supply Line Leak
Supply line leaks typically involve water from clean sources. These leaks often occur under sinks. However, you can find leaks in walls and ceilings, depending on how the water is pushed through the facility. Be careful if freshwater touches or penetrates other building materials because it may no longer be classified as clean, meaning you may need a professional to remove the damage.

Pipe Break
As with supply leaks, a broken pipe can also cause water loss from a clean source. However, while the water may come from a clean source, it does not mean it remains fresh for very long. When water touches other materials or chemicals, it can transform from clean to grey water. Contact a professional if you are not sure what water category you are dealing with.

Appliance Leak
Beyond supply leaks and pipe breaks, an appliance failure may lead to flooding from a clean source. For example, if a supply hose fails, or if a valve breaks, you can see pooling coming from the appliance. Unfortunately, some devices hide water leaks, and you will not know if there is a leak until you remove the item. If you notice an increase in your utility costs, but cannot locate a leak, try inspecting equipment and appliances.
Clean water, or category one, leaks can often be resolved by the business owner. However, it does not take much for the water to devolve into grey or black water. Contact a professional if you are not sure how to handle the problem.

How To Clean Up a Water Heater Leak

5/22/2020 (Permalink)

Closeup of a rusty and leaking water heater A leaking water heater should be handled with care

How To Clean Up a Water Heater Leak

Are you having trouble getting enough hot water? Do you notice strange sounds coming from the tank? Maybe you're seeing puddles or drips that haven't occurred before? These are signs of a leaking water heater. You deserve a warm shower without water damage. With that in mind, residents in Hilshire Village, TX, should act swiftly to remedy the issue. Here are five steps to assist in alleviating your water heating needs.

1. Seek Professional Advice
Where do you start? A water restoration company understands the importance of remediation and repair. Contact a reputable business within your area, asking for immediate arrival. They have equipment and experience, making the process smoother and more efficient.

2. Turn Off the Electricity
Your failed water heater is a hazard for you and the family. Therefore, as you wait for the professionals, protect your home and everyone in it by shutting off the electrical circuit to that zone.

3. Request Testing
Begin by determining the extent of property damage. This is important in ensuring that future complications don't arise. The crew can assess if the moisture invaded the foundation or the drywall, offering a complete picture of your replacement needs. They can also work on the leaking water heater, figuring out why the device broke. If possible, they can fix it. If they can't, they'll arrange for a new unit to be installed.

4. Remove Water
Lingering liquid can create a musty odor or damage walls. This fluid needs extraction, so the team should use dehumidifiers to draw out the excess humidity.

5. Restore the Area
Once the broken water heater is removed and the new piece is installed, specialists will begin to rebuild your room. This often includes putting in new baseboards and drywall. Painting or patching takes place to get everything back to normal.
A leaking water heater should be handled with care. Think about your safety by cutting the electricity off. Then, begin to work with a restoration team that can lead you through the appropriate remediation steps.

Common Commercial Bathroom Problems and Ways To Avoid Them

5/6/2020 (Permalink)

Clogged toilet A clogged toilet is sometimes caused by thick toilet paper

Common Commercial Bathroom Problems

Nearly everyone has had the unpleasant experience of going into a public restroom and finding it in disarray. It could be the presence of paper towels and trash on the floor, or a shallow sheet of water trickling out from one of the stalls. The situation could be caused by flawed custodial staffing, or by a mechanical problem such as a clogged toilet. Not only are situations like this unsanitary and detrimental to a company's image, they can also cause injuries and property damage. To prevent water damage, a qualified water mitigation team in Spring Valley, TX, should be called in to assess the situation and remove any standing water.

Simple Restroom Solutions
The majority of issues with bathroom leaks and flooding can be resolved with a few smart practices. The following steps go a long way toward a cleaner, healthier, and dryer restroom:

  • Adequate staffing
  • Trained custodians
  • Proper use of materials
  • Regular emptying of wastebaskets
  • Clear signage
  • Regular maintenance

A clogged toilet is sometimes caused by thick toilet paper. A thinner brand is less likely to result in a clogged toilet. An air dryer can reduce the amount of paper products that could wind up in the wrong place. Additionally, overflowing wastebaskets promote the practice of throwing trash in the toilets, which can clog the toilet. Most people want to do the right thing, so signage that explains what items can be flushed down the toilet may be helpful.

Complicated Restroom Issues
Whenever a toilet overflow results in sewage being present in a public restroom, the area should be closed until the situation is resolved. This usually requires the services of a professional team equipped with personal protective gear. The contaminated water should be removed and the area cleaned and disinfected to high standards. Porous materials such as drywall may need to be replaced. A clogged toilet is a common problem in commercial restrooms, but if not addressed quickly it can become a serious liability.

What Is Secondary Water Damage?

2/17/2020 (Permalink)

Severe black mold damage in a home Severe black mold damage in Hillshire Village, TX

If you have experienced water damage in Hilshire Village, TX, it is important that you clean the water up quickly so that black mold does not have a chance to form. There are two types of water damage. Primary water damage is what occurs immediately when an area floods. Secondary damage occurs after primary damage and is the result of damage happening over time. This is when structural damage tends to happen.

Causes of Secondary Water Damage

Secondary damage can be caused by anything from a flood to a leak hidden inside a wall. There are several key indicators of this type of water:

  • The presence of black mold
  • Other contaminants present in the water
  • Areas where water was not completely extracted and dried
  • Water that has been left to sit

To ensure it is done right the first time, water must be extracted and the area must be dried and cleaned within a short time. When cleaned and dried properly, secondary damage is not likely to occur.

How To Find It

Secondary water damage can also occur when areas remain moist due to high humidity. It may not always be obvious and can happen over days or weeks, causing extensive damage that is expensive to repair. Water can enter into small cracks in porous materials and begin to swell. The moisture can cause floors, walls, or other areas to warp or crack. Mold can begin forming in as little as 24-48 hours. A professional company may use a moisture meter to help locate hidden damp areas and use special procedures to dry them before secondary water damage has a chance to set in.
Keep your home free of black mold by drying wet or moist areas as quickly as possible. If you have experienced water damage, a professional remediation company can help you dry, disinfect, and restore your home quickly.

Avoid Water Damage During Construction

1/27/2020 (Permalink)

Water pipe break Water pipe break in Spring Valley, TX

There is nothing quite like erecting a new building to house your Spring Valley, TX, business. Ushering in a new era comes with a lot of planning and work. While it can be easy to get wrapped up in the design, it's important to consider what can happen during construction. Items stored in a flooded area or a broken pipe can bring unwanted moisture that may have long-lasting repercussions. Ensuring a water pipe repair is done quickly and other small steps can help ensure a smooth project.

The Main Culprits

If you’ve done your research, you have confidence in the contractor you are using to be on top of preventing damage. It’s still important to stick to the plan and inspect the site frequently to ensure things are being done right. While hopefully the unexpected doesn’t happen, below are ways that water can become a problem.

If pipe connections or drain fittings aren’t properly installed, calling a professional for a water pipe repair may become something you need to do more than you want. A proper test of the system should be done before letting it run on its own.
Mother Nature often does not cooperate. If areas are exposed to the elements, it could mean dealing with water damage. This is especially true for elevator shafts, mechanical opening, unsecured doors, and unfinished roofs.
While most construction materials are designed to withstand the elements for extended periods of time, others may not be. Regardless of the material, proper storage is key to reducing downtime, losses and ongoing issues.

Dealing with Damage

If water does become a problem, addressing it quickly is vital. A water remediation expert will have the know-how and tools to ensure your new building doesn’t have any lingering problems. From preventing mold to ensure areas are secure from water coming in when it shouldn’t, a professional can help get your construction back on track.
Smooth construction is always preferred, but that doesn’t always happen. Staying on top of the things, such as completing a water pipe repair or keeping materials in a dry place, will help keep things worry-free.

How the Pros Clean up After Sewer Damage

12/11/2019 (Permalink)

Stair of a house fully flooded Flood damage in Bunker Hill Village, TX

How the Pros Clean up After Sewer Damage

A flood in your home is bad enough, but when a backed-up sewer is to blame, you've got a lot more problems on your hands. Because sewer water will contain human feces and other hazardous materials, known as black water, you need to enlist the expertise of a professional flood remediation team. These specialists have the experience and equipment to safely handle sewer cleanup.

Your Responsibilities

If you have a flood in your Bunker Hill Village,TX, home, you may be able to handle it on your own if it's only affecting a small area and doesn't include black water. However, for a sewer backup, your primary responsibility is to safely get out of your home. Coming into contact with black water can make you sick or can even be lethal. Other steps you need to take are:

  • Make sure every family member, including pets, are out of your home.
  • Call a flood cleanup company, the city utility services and your insurance company.
  • Do not re-enter your home until it is deemed safe to do so.

The Pros Step In
Even for something as seemingly simple as a flooded toilet, you don't want to try to clean up sewage on your home. A professional crew will first come in and inspect the extent of the damage. The team will extract all water in the affected areas of the home. Using protective equipment, crew members will clean the flooded space, ensuring that all sewage is gone from the home.

Drying and Disinfecting
The cleanup team will use dryers and dehumidifiers to thoroughly dry the home as part of the sewer cleanup process. Importantly, crew members will also sanitize the area to kill any remaining bacteria. The company will then evaluate its work to ensure you can return your home.
Leave sewer cleanup needs to the professionals. The right company will take care of even the most severe flooding and make your home look like it did before the water damage.

Restoring Water-Damaged Household Objects

10/16/2019 (Permalink)

Interior of kitchen with drywall torn out because of water damage and the resulting mold. Damaged drywall in a Bunker Hill Village, TX kitchen

Water in the home can damage your most prized possessions. Fortunately, many objects can be restored after suffering water damage.

Restoration Process

Although every item and water damage situation is unique, the general steps for restoring a water-damaged item are similar:

  1. Dry. Drying the item is your first priority. The longer it stays wet, the more likely it is to grow mold and incur further damage. Different items will need different drying methods, but air drying an object in a room with low humidity should work for many items. You can also use fans to increase airflow.
  2. Clean. Water-damaged items will likely have dirt and bacteria on them after they are dry. Some items can be cleaned with soap and warm water while others will do better with professional dry cleaning.
  3. Restore. Repairing the object is the final step. You may be able to do the repairs yourself, or you may need to enlist professional help.

Tips for Specific Types of Items

As discussed above, different items will benefit from different restoration techniques. The following are some tips for dealing with common household items that have been damaged by water in the home.

If photographs have gotten stuck together, do not pull them apart. You can soak them in water until they separate.
Do not dry paintings in direct sunlight.
If you want to enlist the help of a conservator for books or other documents, you can place these items in the refrigerator to prevent mold growth until you take them to the restorer.
You may be able to remove water stains from wood furniture using wood furniture cleaner and orange oil.
Carpet and drywall can be salvaged as long as the floodwater was clean, i.e., from a broken pipe.

Water in the home can cause serious problems, but experienced restoration professionals can help you get your Bunker Hill Village,TX, residence back to normal in no time.

Water Damage Is a Ticking Time Bomb In Your Home

9/25/2019 (Permalink)

flooded bathroom of a house Whether the water comes from a broken pipe or clogged toilet, the moment the water touches the floor it can begin to soak into your home

Modern day life can be stressful, but when your daily routine is disrupted by a flood of water, the stress can surge. Whether the water comes from a broken pipe or clogged toilet, the moment the water touches the floor it can begin to soak into your home in Houston, TX. Walls, floorboards, furniture, and carpets can quickly absorb the liquid. The longer the water sits, the more your home can soak up the often-dirty overflow. It is then that the hidden water can become a ticking time bomb of potential mold, bacteria, and germs. Here are a few things you should know about the damaged area.

1. Water and mold have a symbiotic relationship. Flooding can lead to a colony of mold spores in less than 48 hours. It is important to remove the water as quickly as possible to prevent the rapid growth of the fungus and begin drying the area out.

2. A water repair and restoration team can help remove the water if it is more than an inch deep. The professionally trained water removal specialists can use industrial fans and dehumidifiers to dry out water in your home’s hidden areas.

3. Floors, walls, and cabinets often need to be cut away to find hidden sources of water. The holes are typically made three or four inches above the floor line.

4. Water-filled porous items should be discarded. Items such as furniture and carpets can readily soak in the broken pipe dirty water and store it for weeks. Since there may be little chance of reclaiming the items, discard them to prevent mold growth.

5. Disinfect the entire area once it is dry. Bacteria and mold love to multiply in dark, damp areas, so prevent any possibility of fungus growth by disinfecting insulation, plasterboard, wood, and flooring. Lavishly use the spray on anything that came in contact with flood water in the home.

Flood water from a broken pipe can continue to wreak havoc on your home if cleanup is not complete. Therefore, rely on a specially trained team to protect your home from future mold damage by completely sanitizing the area.

Visit for more information on water damage. 

Understanding Secondary Damage to Your Home After Flooding

9/3/2019 (Permalink)

Mold colonies Mold begins to form in a home due to several factors

Storms, leaking pipes, and other water-related incidences can cause flooding in your home. While water damage can be detrimental in and of itself, the problem does not necessarily go away once the area dries. Secondary damage, including black mold, can form in as little as a day and spread across your entire home. Proper water cleanup and mold remediation in Hilshire Village,TX, can help protect your household and belongings.

How Mold Colonies Form

Mold begins to form in a home due to several factors.

1. Moisture: Leaking walls and roofs, condensation, and even hanging wet clothes can leave an area wet, which then absorbs and sits in porous areas such as furniture, drywall, and carpeting
2. High humidity: Mold cannot grow in freezing temperatures, so warm humidity levels help keep the moisture in the area and can spawn black mold
3. Improper ventilation: If the inside of the home is humid after receiving moisture, the area should be ventilated to release the humidity, and conversely, closed off if the outside area is more humid than the inside.
4. Time: While mold doesn’t grow instantaneously, it does grow and spread quickly, so it is imperative to dry and ventilate the area as fast as possible

How To Remediate Damage

Black mold is a living organism that exists all around us, so complete removal is often impossible and therefore, not the goal when cleaning a home. Instead, look to remediate the damage by working with professionals to inspect and contain the problem as quickly as possible to prevent further spreading. Mold must then be removed from all surfaces, internal areas, and the air itself. Once removed, the formerly contaminated areas should be sanitized, including walls and other structural areas, plus furniture and personal belongings.
Simply drying the affected areas of the home after suffering water damage is not always enough to prevent secondary damage. With proper mold remediation and specialized drying and cleaning techniques, your home may be protected from further damage due to flooding and mold growth.

Memorial Home Care: Cleaning Carpet After A Flood

8/12/2019 (Permalink)

a metal water extraction tool on top of standing water Some floods develop slowly, and some can build in just a few minutes.

Cleaning Carpet After a Flood

Throughout the greater Houston metropolitan area, hundreds of commercial and residential properties experience flood and storm damage each year. SERVPRO of Town & Country is proud to serve homes and businesses throughout Memorial and Northwest Houston, and we are prepared to help you when disaster strikes your property. Immediately after a flood, it is important to extract the standing water as soon as it is safe to do so. This will help prevent further damage to the structure, and your items that are in the home. Once the floodwaters have receded and standing water has been extracted, restoration to your property can begin.

Many people are shocked to see the amount of sludge and muck that is left behind on carpet after water extraction. If you plan on doing the cleanup yourself, be sure to protect yourself with the proper footwear, clothing, gloves, and goggles. Floodwaters contain bacteria, chemicals, sewage, and a variety of other pathogens that may affect your health. For this reason, it is also recommended that carpets and padding that have been saturated by flood waters are disposed of properly.

However, if a storm causes your foundation or roof to leak, and your carpets are saturated with that type of water for less than 24 hours, you can safely clean and dry your carpets. Here are the steps to take to do it properly:

First, quickly remove furniture and any other items that are sitting on the wet carpet since the dyes from furniture can leave permanent stains on the carpet. Now that all items are removed from the carpet, slowly and thoroughly go over the entire space with a wet/dry vacuum. The goal is to remove as much water as possible from the carpet, and padding. Any residual moisture can lead to mold growth that will require professional mold removal in the coming months.

Once you are confident that you’ve removed as much water as possible, place ventilation fans throughout to facilitate quick and thorough drying. If you have portable dehumidifiers, employ them at this time too. When the carpet is dry, vacuum it multiple times in each direction to loosen and capture any leftover debris. After this use a carpet cleaning  solution, following manufacturer directions. This deep cleaning will help to prevent stains caused by the water damage in your Memorial area home.

Once the carpets have been shampooed, use the fans and dehumidifiers again to further prevent mold growth after a flood. If in a couple of days you notice a musty or mildew smell, you need to contact a professional carpet cleaning service or a locally owned and operated Houston SERVPRO for evaluation. It is possible that you were not able to extract enough water to prevent mold from taking hold in your carpet. Call us at anytime; we are available to assist you whenever disaster causes water damage in your home or business.

How Does SERVPRO Dry Structures?

6/17/2019 (Permalink)

Air movers and dehumidifiers help SERVPRO properly restore any water loss.

SERVPRO is the leading fire & water restoration and cleanup crew in the nation.  In 2018 we celebrated our fiftieth year in business with over 1,700 locations stretching from coast to coast.  With that being said we have the entrepreneurial spirit built into our daily operations as each office is an independently owned and operated franchise location.

With so many moving parts of a $2 BN company we take pride in having standardized operating procedures that ensure all SERVPRO customers receive the best service and quality restoration work across the country.

As part of our green system we leverage cutting edge technology that properly measures, moisture maps and scopes all losses to ensure we have the correct amount of equipment placed at each loss to ensure we meet our drying goals.

The drying process consists of two main types of equipment:

  • Air Movers: air movers are used to vaporize water from surrounding material.  This device creates high-velocity airflow for faster drying.  

  • Dehumidifiers: once vaporized, water evaporates or is collected by a dehumidifier.  The result is the environment is restored to it's original humidity level.

These two powerful machines help to extract hidden moisture from building materials including drywall, wood, concrete and other organic materials.

Is Water Damage Preventable?

1/16/2019 (Permalink)

Damage ceiling in a Spring Valley, TX residence

It is not possible to rule out every kind of water damage. A flood or another unexpected event can introduce water to dry areas of a residence in  Spring Valley, TX. Homeowners should take measures to limit the likelihood of unwanted water in home due to broken pipes, leaky appliances, or a damaged roof.

Pipe Breaks

Pipes typically break due to damage or pressure build-up caused by a blockage. There are several ways to prevent either issue from arising:

  • Have plumbing regularly inspected
  • Insulate pipes and drip faucets in below-freezing weather
  • Shut off water during trips out of town

A broken pipe can quickly cause extensive damage. As soon as a homeowner notices a pipe has burst, he or she should shut off the main water supply and try to remove as much water as possible. A water damage restoration company can be helpful for pipe cleanup.

Appliance Leaks

Appliance leaks are another common cause of water in home. Regular inspection of dishwashers, HVAC units, water heaters, and washing machines can prevent leaks from becoming severe. Leaks may become apparent in several places:

  • Around or under the appliance
  • Near supply hoses
  • Near drainage

Keep in mind that condensation may tend to develop in certain parts of a home. This moisture is not caused by a leak, but should be prevented if possible.

Roof Leaks

Roof leaks may start subtly and result in major damage to insulation, ceilings, or interiors. Regularly inspect the condition of a roof and look for damaged or missing shingles or pooling water. Homeowners may want to schedule a professional inspection annually or after severe storms.

Regular inspections of plumbing, appliances, and roofing can identify potential causes of water in home damage. Homeowners may perform periodic inspections, but licensed plumbers, appliance specialists, and roofers can recommend maintenance that could prevent water damage at a residence in Spring Valley, TX.

5 Things You Should Know About Water Damage

12/31/2018 (Permalink)

A pipe break saturated the walls of this room in Houton, TX

5 Things You Should Know About Water Damage

Floods come in all sizes. Small floods can come from a pipe burst. Large ones can come from a river overflowing its banks. If you have never experienced a flood, there is a lot to learn. Here are five facts about water damage that you may not know.
1. You can experience all categories of floods without leaving your home in Houston,TX. The level of water contamination determines a flood’s category. As the numbers go up, the contamination gets progressively worse.

  • Category 1 is a clean-water flood which would occur if a water pipe burst under a sink.
  • Category 2 can be called a grey-water flood which would occur if your dishwasher overflowed or a sink or shower drain failed.
  • Category 3 is a blackwater flood which could be caused by sewers backing up into your home and overflowing your toilet, showers or sinks.

2. Drywall above the water line is salvageable. A flood cut is a horizontal cut made around the room 12 to 18 inches about the highest high-water mark.

3. The biggest danger after any flooding event is mold. It is everywhere around us just waiting for a source of moisture and food. Once it gets established, the cost of the cleanup increases.

4. During and after a flood, avoid everything electrical. Electricity should be shut off. If it isn’t, avoid standing water and leave everything electrical alone. Appliances and electronics are often salvageable if they are delivered to a restoration facility the way they were after the flood.

5. Water damage restoration specialists have special skills and equipment for dealing with floods. They can remediate the damage and bring your life back to normal quickly.

Fortunately, most of us are not going to experience anything worse than a pipe burst or a roof leak. Even though both have the potential for extreme damage, both are insignificant compared to the water damage from home-consuming floods that one sees on the TV news.

What Happens When My Pipes Freeze?

12/31/2018 (Permalink)

a frozen pipe with water coming out Keep the water running while you treat the pipe.

As a business owner in Hilshire Village,TX, you're always trying to stay ahead of maintenance problems in your building, including water damage. You may think you've got everything covered, but have you considered what happens if your pipes freeze? When this happens, the water inside expands, pushing on the pipes and causing them to burst. The resulting damage and water cleanup can cost you a great deal of money. But, happily, this problem may be prevented by following the tips outlined below.

1. Keep Temperatures Stable

Make sure that the building temperature always stays the same. This will help keep the pipes from weakening due to expansion and contraction, thus preventing broken pipes and water damage. If the building will be unoccupied for a while, keep the heat on. Set the thermostat to 55 degrees Fahrenheit or higher.

2. Use Insulation

Make sure to insulate any pipes that are exposed, especially the ones in colder or unheated places like crawlspaces and basements. The more insulation you can use, the better.

3. Run the Faucets

If it gets really cold, let the faucets run at a trickle. Even a very slow drip can be sufficient. As long as the water is running, it may freeze inside the pipes, but pressure won't build up, so it won't cause bursting.

4. Close or Open Valves

Close any inside valves that supply water to the outside. Open the outside valves to let any water in the pipes run out.

5. If You Find a Frozen Pipe

If you turn on a tap during cold weather and only a trickle comes out, it's probably due to a frozen pipe. The pipe is probably outside along an exterior wall, or in the foundation where the water line enters the house. Apply heat to the pipe using a hair dryer or a heating pad. 

If you've already found a frozen pipe and water damage has occurred, it may be best to consult with a professional water mitigation specialist right away. Hopefully, this is not the case, and by following the preventative measures shown above, you can easily prevent a burst pipe.

The What and How of Secondary Water Damage

11/7/2018 (Permalink)

Houston,TX water damage due to supply line from refrigerator broke

Most homeowners, when their homes become the victim of a natural disaster, broken pipe or backed up septic tank, assume that once the water is gone so too is the danger. This is far from the case. If a water peril has not been sufficiently cleaned and dried out by a professional Houston,TX, water damage restoration team, the home in which the peril occurs may fall victim to secondary damage, such as black mold.

The What of Secondary Water Damage

Secondary water damage is often much costlier and damaging that primary water damage, which includes wet drywall, carpet and anything else that acme into direct contact with the initial water source. Some examples of secondary water damage include the following:

  • Cracked and sagging plaster or sheetrock
  • Buckling hardwood floors
  • Peeling vinyl
  • Damaged finish to fixed structures
  • Colonization of mold

Each of the above issues can be costly and severely affect the integrity of a home. For these reasons and more, water damage should always be treated immediately and, if possible, by a trained professional.

The How of Secondary Water Damage

Secondary damage such as block mold typically occurs when a homeowner fails to act quickly to remediate a water peril. Below are a few common causes of secondary water damage:

  • High humidity that results as cleanup procedures or efforts that are inadequate to the home's size and rate of evaporation
  • A water incident that was not cleaned up in a timely fashion, that was left undiscovered for a lengthy period of time or that was not effectively cleaned by a professional
  • Damage that was missed during the initial assessment and therefore not cleaned

In short, secondary water damage occurs as the result of inadequate and/or untimely cleanup efforts. You can prevent secondary issues such as black mold from arising and retain the health and integrity of your home by contacting your local water damage restoration team as soon as possible after discovering the incident. Your swift response can save you time, money and headache.

Town & Country Home Care: Safeguarding Your Keepsakes from Water Damage

9/24/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Stat: The chance a water heater will leak or burst begins to dramatically increase when it is 5 years old.

Our weather here in the Houston area presents significant challenges to structures. Floods and high winds are common here, and when they strike our neighborhood, water damage in the Memorial area is to be expected. While we cannot control Mother Nature, there are some steps you can take to safeguard your keepsakes before a natural disaster.

First, if you are keeping photo albums, prized artwork, or antiques in your basement, move them to higher floors in your home. Basements and lower levels are typically the first places that flood waters pool. In addition to floods due to rain or backups, water heaters can rupture and cause damage to your keepsakes and family heirlooms. Storing your items correctly, such as on high shelves or in sealed plastic containers, can help protect them as well as speed flood damage restoration.

Second, regularly inspect both indoors and out. On the exterior, look for loose or missing roofing tiles and call your roofer immediately if any is spotted. Additionally, watch how water drains from your gutters and ensure that the landscaping and hardscaping around your home encourages water to flow away from the foundation. On the interior, watch for signs of water damage and mold. Look at ceilings, walls, grout lines in the bathroom, and on the walls surrounding the exhaust fan.

Third, if your home is in one of the many areas of Houston that have high water tables, consider investing in French drains and a sump pump. These drains run around the exterior of the foundation, and channel excess groundwater into a sump pit. Once in the pit, the water pumped out and away from your home. French drains also help to keep basements and lower levels of your home dry, preventing mold growth. If your basement is typically damp, but there are no signs of water damage, at the very least, use a dehumidifier to maintain humidity levels at 50% or less.

If your home floods, call Town & Country SERVPRO, we are available 24/7 to respond to your disaster. The quicker you call, and the quicker we get started and have a better chance of saving your precious family heirlooms, furniture, clothing, drapes, artwork, and photographs. Whether the flood damage in the Memorial area is due to a hurricane, torrential downpour, flash floods, backed up sewage, a leaky roof, fire, or ruptured hot water tank, we stand ready for flood damage restoration.

About Town & Country SERVPRO

The SERVPRO team of Town & Country is Faster to Any Size Disaster, helping residential and commercial property owners when disasters strike. We are experts in the field of mold remediation, water damage, flood and fire cleanup, and other events that damage your property. 

The Adjuster’s Visit: How To Minimize Potential Problems

3/25/2018 (Permalink)

Few things cause as much consternation to a homeowner as working with a home adjuster after claiming water damage to your residence. Knowing the insurance company has the future of the property repairs in its hands can be both frustrating and frightening. But you can be prepared for any questions the representative may have by following a few simple steps. Although not all policies are equal, most insurance adjusters require the following information to settle an insurance claim.

1. Keep a log of everything possible. Yes, even in this technological world, information can get lost in Houston, TX. By keeping a log of phone calls, timeline, emails, and face-to-face communications, you are protecting yourself. Many people even send emails to confirm conversations after a meeting to prevent the “he said, she said” problems that can occur.

2. Create an inventory of damaged property and personal possessions. It is important to keep a complete inventory list of anything you plan to claim. Don’t forget to include the unseen items, such as damaged carpet padding, objects in cabinets, and sheetrock. For every item listed, include the following:

• Description of item, including make and model number
• Cash value when the item was purchased
• Cost of the replacement item
• Include any applicable paperwork, receipts, and bills

3. Ask your insurance company what restoration team it prefers to work with and contact the business immediately. This can ensure you are doing your best to protect the property from additional damage. Ask the crew to detail its cleanup efforts for your home adjuster, and request pictures before, during, and after cleanup.

4. Obtain written bids from licensed contractors. Get more than one bid, if possible. Bids should include a complete materials list with itemized prices.

5. Keep accurate records of expenses and repairs. If your safety is involved, and restorations must be made before a visit by the adjuster, keep detailed records. Also, notify the insurance company for approval before making the repairs.

Being prepared can minimize potential problems during a home adjuster visit. It can also help speed the claim process forward. Visit for more information on water damage. 

How to Restore Your Furniture After Water Damage

1/24/2018 (Permalink)

You probably know that water in a home in Houston, TX can cause considerable damage to the floors and walls. However, it can also cause problems with the belongings that were in the flooded room. Porous furniture and other items in the room where the flood occurred require special care. This includes:

• Mattresses
• Couches
• Blankets
• Pillows
• Pet bedding
• Upholstered chairs
• Rugs
• Other cloth items

Because these belongings allow air and water to pass through the surface, they can be breeding grounds for mold. After the water in the home is gone, you can focus on the furniture. Avoid having to toss your upholstery by doing these three things.

Remove Visible Mold

Before you can accomplish anything else, you must get rid of any mold you can see. If you can use a HEPA vacuum, do that and then throw away the bag when you are finished. However, if you can’t get your hands on such a tool, you can wear gloves and wipe the mold away with damp paper towels. Make sure to seal the dirty paper towels in a plastic bag before you throw them away.

Air Dry

If the upholstery is still wet, allow nature to work in your favor as much as possible. If you can allow something to dry outside in the sun, do let it sit outdoors. If not, you can open the windows and doors. If the weather doesn’t allow for these methods, you can use a dehumidifier in the room.

Clean with Alcohol

Once the furniture finishes dry cleaning, you can use a one-to-one solution of rubbing alcohol and water to finish the restoration process. First, wipe away any remaining mildew you find. Then, dampen a cloth with the alcohol solution and rub it on the furniture. Make sure to allow it to dry completely.

Water in a home can be a nightmare for any homeowner. However, a professional cleanup crew can help you restore your home in Houston, TX and you can use these tricks to get your furniture back to normal. Visit for more information on water damage.

The Steps Followed by Experts in Dealing with Water Damage Restoration

9/26/2017 (Permalink)

The Steps Followed by Experts in Dealing with Water Damage Restoration

There are a lot of plumbing issues confined to the bathroom. Due to this, bathrooms experience a significant amount of water damage emergencies. From pipe break and supply line break, sinks overflowing to clogged toilets, and supply lines bursting, the possibilities of water damage seem endless. It is important to always be ready to do water in the home restoration to the flooded home. The following are the restoration steps that what will take place after a pipe break or supply line break.

1. Contacting the restoration company

The first thing to do is to get in touch with a professional restoration service of your choice. Once you have contacted them, they will inquire from you the necessary information like your contact, the location of the flood damage, whether it is water in the business or water in the home area, insurance cover, what may have caused the flood damage, and if there is electricity in the flooded home. It is vital for the restoration company to have this information because it will facilitate the response time of the service providers.

2. Inspection

The restoration company you’ve chosen will send a representative to the premises. They will survey the level of water in the home or water in the business, identify and stop the water flow, and check for contaminated water. The restoration company will also proceed to verify the type of water, that is, whether it is black, white or gray, and this will help in water cleanup and restoring the flooded home or other property as it was before the water damage. In addition to this, they will make certain that there are no live electrical wires exposed to the water in the home or water in the business.

3. Water Cleanup.
After the representative has done the above, they will send for more mitigation experts so that work can begin. The water cleanup will be the most urgent thing to undertake, and it will be done immediately after the inspection. If the flood damage is severe, they may recommend a temporary relocation as the mitigation and reconstruction begins. Depending on the restoration company you’ve enlisted, they may help you in the moving out process. The amount of water present will determine which equipment such as submersible pumps, wet or dry vacuums, will be used to do water cleanup and mitigation.

4. De-humidification and drying
Drying aims at reducing the level of humidity in the air. Once all the water has been eliminated, the drying process will begin. Certain equipment is used here like the industrial air conditioners and dehumidifiers, and these remove moisture from the surface corners which are hard to access. The staff will monitor the process until drying is complete. The specialized equipment also guarantees that secondary water damage like swelling and warping does not occur.

5. Cleaning after a pipe break
After it is clear that the premise is dry of any water, the experts will proceed to clean the area and make sure that all the dirt has been removed. They will also get rid of any offensive and persistent odors that may be present and sanitize the area. If there are any destroyed materials still present, they will be disposed of.

6. Restoration after a supply line break

Once the devastation has been dealt with, the professionals will put in place mitigation measures to prevent any further pipe break or supply line break damage from occurring. The measures may be like putting up roof tarps if necessary, board ups, temporary fencing and maybe temporary warehouse space. At this juncture, it is possible to move back into the premises and do an inspection to establish that the job is complete and that there is no more water in the business.

It is an excellent process that is easy to execute well when done by competent, skilled professionals. The reconstruction may take anywhere between a day and two weeks depending on the extent of the flood damage or water damage. The cost may vary depending on the people who are performing the job. It’s advisable to have in hand contacts of various service providers to compare the cost and time they plan to spend on the flooded home.
Visit for more information on water damage.

Town and Country Water Loss

9/12/2017 (Permalink)

Town and Country Water Loss

Recently our franchise was called to help out a family who had their basement flooded. They were very upset as they supposed the sprinkler system had failed causing the flood. They tried everything to find the bad sprinkler head but could not find it at all.

After we had done all the work from the day before their basement flooded again. They called us in to remove the water and hired a sprinkler repair company to find the problem. They didn't find anything and didn't charge the homeowner. But they did notice the signs of a broken sprinkler coming from the neighbor.

The problem was that their neighbor was on a slope higher than the homeowners with the flooded basement. The neighbor's sprinkler had a broken head which ran right down into their window well flooding their basement.

The homeowners were very upset but the neighbor paid for all the problems which was the right thing to do.

Water Damage After a Fire

9/12/2017 (Permalink)

Water Damage After a Fire

A fire can be devastating enough on a home. However, there will also be considerable water and firefighter damage as well. The main goal of a firefighter is to save lives and property. There are many ways that a firefighter can accomplish this goal.

  1. Backdraft - When a home has a fire all the oxygen is being used up for the flames. Fire fighters will break windows of the home to allow them to get through the door without receiving backdraft.
  2. Firefighters use a 2 1/2 inch hose which can flow 290 gallons per minute if attached to the fire hydrant. That is a lot of water flowing into the home to put out the fire.

Although there are other factors to a fighting a fire the damage done by the firefighters must also be taken into consideration.

How To Best Resolve Residential and Commercial Flooding

7/20/2017 (Permalink)

How To Best Resolve Residential and Commercial Flooding

It's a nightmare scenario. A pipe breaks or a supply line breaks, leading to water gushing out and onto the floor at the rate of dozens of gallons per minute. If you're not an expert plumber, you may not be able to shut off the water flow, leading to rapidly forming water damage. The water begins seeping through the floor. Soon, the carpeting in the neighboring room is becoming soaked and it's raining in the basement. What should you do?

The first thing to do is recognize this for the serious situation that it is. Large-scale water damage is a potentially catastrophic situation, capable of causing structural damage and even failure. High-volume water damage, when left to sit, will cause extensive damage to the property and may eventually lead to the condemning of the premises.

Fortunately, a quick response to new water damage, by a competent restoration company, can not only avoid permanent and serious damage, it can all but ensure the total restoration of the property to its prior condition. Below, we'll summarize the things that happen when a water damage event occurs and how best to handle it.

When a pipe breaks or a supply line breaks, the best thing that any property owner can do to prevent flood damage is immediately call the local professional restoration company. A team of professionals from the restoration company can almost always completely reverse any flood damage that has taken place, providing there is not standing black water, such as occurs in an overflowing river. But the restoration and mitigation process should begin as quickly as possible. This usually means that a team of restoration and mitigation professionals should be on-site within approximately the first five hours after a flood damage event has occurred.

After the first 24 hours, it is still possible for successful restoration and mitigation of the property. But the chances of a successful mitigation of the damage become increasingly less likely, with every hour that passes beyond the 24-hour mark.

While not all property owners recognize the potential severity of a flooded home or business, the restoration company does. That's why they have teams available on 24-hour call, ready to be deployed with close to the same response time as a fire department. That's because in the water cleanup process, time is the most valuable commodity.

The water cleanup team will typically arrive within a half hour of the call being placed. Upon arriving, they will immediately enter the premises, assessing the extent of the water in the business or water in the home. At this stage, they will also seek out any leaking water that may be coming from the original pipe break or supply line break. If there is an active leak, the pipe break or supply line break may need to be fixed with welding.

If the water in the home or water in the business has permeated intramural spaces, the team will be able to detect it, through the use of sophisticated detection equipment.

Using powerful pumps, all standing water in the home or water in the business will be extracted. The water cleanup team should be able to extract all water in the home or water in the business within the first hour.

Next the flooded home will undergo the drying process. Large drying equipment will be used, which is capable of removing thousands of pounds of water from the flooded home's materials and structure. The drying process may take up to 24 hours.

The last step is to clean and sanitize the flooded home. This will prevent any mold growth and eliminate all smells that may be forming.
Visit for more information on water damage.

Recommended Flood Damage Restoration Tips

6/19/2017 (Permalink)

Recommended Flood Damage Restoration Tips

Water damage refers to potential losses that occur in the event water intrudes into a system or establishments like the home. Such an intrusion causes some destructive effects including rusting of steel and metallic objects and surfaces, rotting of wood and the delamination of materials like plywood. The process of damage may be slow or instantaneous and sometimes highly catastrophic such as instant flooding.

Water in business or water in home damage can originate from many sources, both internally and externally. The most immediate causes of water in home damage washing machines water overflow, dishwasher water leakages, broken piping system, and a clogged toilet and sewer passage. It is solely the responsibility of homeowners to restore the broken and worn out parts of their home pipe fittings and plumbing channels. Such periodic replacements and repairs will assist mitigate the harmful effects and aftermaths of water damages.

The restoration of a room or home following damage is essential. It involves processes such as vacuuming up the water, water cleanup and making the home habitable, through decontamination and drying. Water in business damage restoration helps in the mitigation of occasions and instances where woods rot, and floor surfaces wear out.

The handling of occurrences water in home setting following water in business damage will depend on the nature and the extent of the water damage. The chosen restoration method depends on the amount of the water and the proposed mitigation measures to help in the clean-up and handling of the flood damage. Restoration can involve steps such as replacement of carpets and repairing damaged structures. Homeowners should contact the right personnel to fix things and offer better mitigation options in the future.

Water cleanup requires certain things to be done at home to restore its state. The shelves have to be cleaned up or replaced, and floors should be scrapped. Additionally, ducts have to be released from the bloat resulting from the water and food damages. An expert can carry out water cleanup process.

Tips and steps to take to handle water damage
There are some water in business damage restoration tips to be incorporated to ensure proper water cleanup and mitigation. The first thing is to carry out a loss assessment and evaluation, which looks into the broken and damaged areas. Infrared tools and equipment should be used to determine the levels of the damage. The structures would then have to undergo a drying process and be disinfected. All the contaminated areas should be dealt with to mitigate undesirable after-effects.

These tips are important in the process of restoration and general clean-up. Dry vendors need to be sought from time to time. Additionally, air movers and air scrubbers, dehumidifiers and wood drying equipment should at all times be left at home following water and flood damages. A continuous monitoring of temperature, moisture, and the humidity levels will provide a significant boost to the process.

Cases of flood damage are not unique in the entire process of water damage. Most of the reported cases of water damage have resulted from flood damages. Most of the homes need to take some steps to allow drying and restore their homes after floods. One of them is to undertake repairs of the drainage and the sewerage systems, piping lines and home dishwasher lines.

The first step to clean up and restore a flooded home is to carry out an inspection. A professional assess and reports on the mitigation measures necessary depending on the extent of damage among other factors. The investigation reveals the extent of the water in home and defines the level of the flood damage too. Next step is water removal using pumps and vacuums from home. The clean-up desired will determine the type of equipment to use in these processes as well as the nature and extent of the flood damage.
Visit for more information on water damage.

Water Damage or Flood Damage Restoration Services

5/22/2017 (Permalink)

Water Damage or Flood Damage Restoration Services

Walking into your home after a long day of work only to be met by water all over the place can be frustrating. Water in home or water in business requires expertise. The headache is not just in the removal of the water, but also getting misplaced items back in place and wringing out water from soaked items. The water damage does not end there. Wooden items slowly start rotting. The dampness provides suitable growth for mold. Steel does what it does best in the presence of water and air, rust. Delamination of plywood may be inevitable, and paint may peel off walls. However, there is good news. All this can be avoided if the water or flood damage is dealt with accordingly and timely through professional water cleanup.

Water cleanup and restoration or mitigation is normally dependent on a number of factors. One of the factors being the kind of water that has caused the damage. These can be put into three categories. Category 1 water which is also referred to as clean water comes from a source whose water is safe for human use. These sources include but are not limited to overflows from tubs, broken water supply lines or water from overflowing sinks. Water containing substantial amounts of chemical, physical or biological contaminants is referred to as Category 2 water. Also called gray water, exposure to this water may result in illness or discomfort. The sources of Category 2 water include but are not limited to water from toilet bowls containing urine and water discharges from the dishwasher, sump pimp failures and water discharge from washing machines. The final category of water causing water damage is known as black water or the Category 3 water. This water contains detrimental amounts of microorganism which can lead to serious illnesses when exposed to human. The sources of this water are not limited to sewage, sea water and floodwater. Standing water can also be a source of category 3 water as it may be contaminated with microorganisms.

In order to grasp the extent to which the water or flood damage has caused and the mitigation or water cleanup measures to take in the situation, restoration services also put into account the class of water damage your house of business premise has suffered. When most of those affected are low permeance materials, we say the water in home or water in business is the class 1 damage since a very minimum amount of moisture has been absorbed by the material. The water clean-up process in this case and the mitigation measures taken are not intensive. The intensity of the water clean-up process and the mitigation increases as the class of the damage from water increase. Class 2 damage affects an entire room of carpet, cushions and if the water has wicked up the walls, it shouldn’t be higher than twenty four inches. Class 3 damage is caused by overhead water that affects the walls, the ceilings, and floor causing floor damage. Water damage involving materials with extremely low permeance and porosity such as hardwood floors and concrete is referred to as Class 4 water or flood damage. This class of water or flood damage requires special drying so as to avoid damage to the floor.

The prudent thing to do when faced with water in home or water in business is to contact drying services who are experts in restoration or water cleanup. Equipped with the right materials, these restoration experts can carry out an extensive and excellent work to ensure that many water damaged materials are salvaged from the mess hence reducing the number of losses. First and foremost, a loss assessment and evaluation of affected materials is done. An inspection of the damaged area is then done using water sensing equipment to determine the source and possible extent of the damage. Water removal or drying is done using the best equipment suited for the amount of water. After that, the process of drying and restoring items is done to avoid losses from floor damages and items rotting due to water in home or water in business damage.
Visit for more information on water damage.

Four Signs You Might Need a New Water Heater: Town & Country Safety Tips

2/14/2017 (Permalink)

Know the parts of your electric or gas water heater.

Hot water is sometimes a luxury (bubble baths and long showers) and sometimes a necessity (laundry and clean dishes). So, when an electric or gas water heater fails or ruptures, it can leave you in the cold as well as causing thousands of dollars in water damage to your home or business. In the event your property is flooded or damaged, it is imperative that you seek a reliable and well-respected flood water restoration company to remediate the damage.

Here are the top four signs you might need a new water heater:

  • Rust around the base of the water heater. A common sign that your water heater is leaking is rust around the base, on the floor or near the drainage tap. This means the base is compromised. Even if there isn’t any visible pooled water, there could be a very slow leak that is causing the rust and if so, it won’t be long before the bottom of the unit totally fails and you get a flood of hot water.
  • Fluctuating temperatures. Of course, if you are experiencing water that is too hot or not hot enough, your water heater may need to be repaired or replaced. Broken heating elements or gas thermocouples are often to blame when the water doesn’t get hot, and those can be replaced without replacing the entire unit. However, if you are already having work done to your water heater, have the tank itself checked for cracks, fissures or other signs of weakness. These could cause a tank failure, resulting in a flood in your home or business. The cost to replace your water heater now could end up being cheaper in the long run.
  • Unusual noises. Hot water heaters and tanks that make knocking noises, creaks, whines or bangs should be examined and assessed by a plumber as quickly as possible. These annoying and often loud noises could be a sign that the heating element is struggling to keep up with the demand. If you live in an area with hard water, which is much of the Houston area, it is possible that there is heavy sediment at the bottom of the tank keeping the water heater from performing optimally. If so, a thorough flushing of the system should correct the problem. However, if left untreated, it is possible for the heating element to fail or burn out.
  • Remember: tankless water heaters can also cause water damage. Tankless water heaters are becoming more popular, but don’t think that just because there’s not a tank of water connected that you can’t experience massive water damage. Check the couplings and the hoses at least once a year to ensure everything is still working properly. If you are going out of town, you might consider turning it off all together, as the emergency couplings can sometimes fail. And as with a regular water heater, look for signs of leaking such as rust, dampness and changes in water temperature.

SERVPRO of Town & Country sees hundreds of properties each year affected by failed water heaters. Often kept in the attic, garage or water closet, when units fail and cause a flood, it’s usually personal items, family heirlooms and photos that are damaged. Fortunately, our highly trained professional technicians have the experience and tools necessary to clean up the water damage properly and bring your home and personal belongings back to pre-flood condition.

For emergencies and other situations, call 281-219-8180 anytime to reach your area flood damage experts, SERVPRO of Town & Country. We help residential and commercial property owners when natural disasters, water damage, sewer backups, floods, mold infestations, fires and other events happen.

Memorial Home Care: Residential Water Damage Is An Emergency!

4/13/2016 (Permalink)

Water Damage Fact: Floods are the #1 natural disaster in the United States

If a pipe bursts, the roof leaks, the sewage backs up, or a flash flood drives water and debris into your home, do not consider it anything less than an emergency!  Serving the Memorial and Northwest Houston area, SERVPRO of Town & Country is available 24 hours a day to restore your home to pre-water damage condition.  Throughout the Houston metropolitan area, homeowners are faced with the overwhelming task of recovering after an episode of residential water damage.  Removing the water is just the beginning of the process; there is much more to the process of cleaning up after water invades your home.

The process of cleaning up is a challenge and requires more than just a wet/dry vacuum and a fan. This is particularly true when a fire, a sewage backup, or floodwaters cause the damage to your Memorial home. These waters and the debris left behind carry potentially hazardous chemicals and bacteria that require proper cleanup protocols, disposal, and protective clothing, footwear, eye protection, and masks. The utmost of care must be taken to prevent injury, infection, or illness and it is imperative that the right tools and equipment are deployed immediately to prevent rapid mold growth. Because of our hot and humid weather here in the greater Houston area, mold can begin to develop within 24 hours after water invades a building.

Water damage in Memorial can quickly escalate into a potentially serious hazardous mold infestation, if the property is not cleaned, disinfected, dehumidified, and restored properly. Our highly trained restoration technicians have the expertise, technology, and tools needed to handle water damage caused by a flash flood, severe weather, a broken water pipe, an overflowing dishwasher, a sewage backup, or from the efforts of knocking down a fire. After assessment of the emergency, our team will begin to remove the water, damaged drywall and carpets and evaluate the damage to furniture and other possessions.  The sooner we are on scene, the more likely your personal possessions and keepsakes can be saved. Your local Houston Metro SERVPRO is available 24 hours a day to begin the restoration process.

From the first step of assessment and evaluation and throughout the cleaning and restoration process, the SERVPRO team is there for you. We are the preferred emergency restoration services provider for many national insurance companies, and we coordinate with your insurance provider to relieve a portion of the burden and stress associated with dealing with water damage in your residence. We understand that after an emergency of this magnitude, you and your family are overwhelmed; this is perfectly natural. Our team stands at the ready to handle the cleaning and restoration process in a timely and professional manner. We are honored each and every time we are asked to assist a member of our community; we are locally owned and operated, and we are your neighbors. Call us the moment your home is ravaged by water, and we will begin the process of restoring your home to its original state.

About Town & Country SERVPRO

The SERVPRO team of Town & Country is faster to any size disaster, helping residential and commercial property owners when disasters strike. We are experts in the field of mold remediation, water damage, flood and fire cleanup, and other events that damage your property. In addition to serving our neighbors in Northwest Houston, we proudly serve surrounding communities.

Memorial Home Care: 6 Common Structural Problems Caused by Water Damage

3/29/2016 (Permalink)

Mold Fact: Mold helps break down, or decompose, organic material.

Each year, many homes and commercial properties throughout the greater Houston metropolitan area are affected by water damage. Whether it’s from a flash flood, severe downpour, fighting a fire, or burst pipe, significant water damage can happen to your Memorial area home if it is not cleaned up properly. Let’s take a look at 6 structural areas of the home and common problems that can arise from water damage.

1.      Drywall. When drywall becomes saturated, it needs to be removed. To fully dry out the frame of the property, and the insulation, the drywall needs to be “flood cut”. The drywall is cut just above where the flood waters saturated the drywall. This allows for the thorough cleaning and drying of affected insulation and framing, to help ensure mold doesn’t start to develop.

2.      Ceilings. A leaky bathtub, shower, or roof can cause ceilings and drywall to become saturated. In some cases, they will need to be removed, to allow for the proper cleaning and drying. Additionally, it is important to recognize that once drywall has become wet, a simple paint job will not keep mold from growing. In fact, painting damp drywall can cause stains and other problems.

3.      Flooring & Floor Joists. Depending on the amount of water and the type of water causing damage to your Memorial home, the floors and floor joists may need to be removed. If it is black water, meaning from sewage or other contaminated sources, the safest course of action is to replace the affected floors as the bacteria and microbes in the sewage can cause severe health problems. The damage caused by clean water can often be remediated with proper cleaning and drying. Your local SERVPRO of Town & Country will provide you with your options when they arrive onsite.

4.      Framing. The wood frame behind your walls can become saturated by flood waters. If not properly cleaned, and dried, the moisture can weaken the structure, and become a breeding ground for mold. This is why drywall removal is necessary for many instances of water damage, as mentioned previously.

5.      Cabinetry. When bathroom and kitchen cabinets become wet or are partially submerged in water, the wood and finish are compromised. If professional cleanup is started immediately, there is a good chance that cabinetry can be saved.

6.      Mold. Our climate here in south Texas supports the quick development of mold. Mold spores thrive in warm, humid environments, and if water damage in the home is not properly cleaned up, a mold infestation can start within days. If you suspect mold infestation in your property, contact us immediately for mold removal in your Memorial home.

The longer water is allowed to remain on surfaces after a broken water pipe, sewage backup, leaky roof, severe storm, or other event, the more structural damage your property will sustain. Call us today; we are locally owned and operated, and our team has the advanced training and equipment to thoroughly assess the damage, extract the water, and start the drying process.

About Town & Country SERVPRO

The SERVPRO team of Town & Country is faster to any size disaster, helping residential and commercial property owners when disasters strike. We are experts in the field of mold remediation, water damage, flood and fire cleanup, and other events that damage your property. In addition to serving our neighbors in northwest Houston, we proudly serve surrounding communities.