Water Removal Company | Services Homeowners Can Expect from A Water Removal Company

Homeowners don’t usually think much about their local water removal company until they have a flood they are dealing with. Although flood damage from storms, broken pipes and sewer backups are some of the most common services these companies are called for, there are several other services offered that homeowners might not be aware of. Water cleanup companies can help homeowners navigate some of the most difficult home maintenance issues above and beyond a flood.

Content and Document Drying-Paper is one of the most susceptible to water damage; however, documents can be laid out on a flat surface to dry easily. The problem with letting documents naturally dry is that they are still susceptible to mold growth. A Water removal company can use vacuum-free drying, microbial disinfecting, deodorizing, sanitizing, ultrasonic separation and Gamma-ray irradiation techniques to properly dry and preserve your content and documents.

Carpet & Upholstery Restoration- Many homeowners believe once their carpet is saturated, there is no way to salvage it; however professional water cleanup companies could have a solution for you. These companies have commercial grade carpet cleaning machines and chemicals that can extract water, clean, deodorize, sanitize, mitigate mold, and restore your carpet, and some types of flooring.

Drying and Dehumidification- Structural dehumidification is necessary when there’s been a flood because water can travel behind the walls, through the HVAC system, and under the flooring, creating a humid and moist environment for mold to thrive. High-velocity air circulators and dehumidifiers will make sure all the structural elements are dry as well.

Fire Fighting Damage- You might not think about water damage when you’re worried about your house burning down; however, firefighters are worried about the fire they are putting out, not the rooms the water is falling in. Hundreds and thousands of gallons of water might come down on your home if there’s a fire which, combined with the fire damage, will devastate your property. A professional restoration company that handles firefighting damage can minimize your losses.

Contact a Water Removal Company in Greater Pittsburg

If you have recently had to deal with any sort of water damage in your home or business and need help with the cleanup, call ServiceMaster of Pittsburgh at 412-376-4645.

Water Damage Cleanup | Tips for Cleaning Up After a House Fire 

A house fire is every homeowner’s worst nightmare. Fire can be devasting and destroy an entire house leaving it unsalvageable, but sometimes, fires are small, and the damage is confined to a small space. When the fire department must come out to put the fire out, homeowners will have more to think about than only the fire damage. They’re going to need water damage cleanup as well.

No matter how big or small the fire is, however, one thing that homeowners must keep in mind is that the cleanup process cannot begin until authorities give the go-ahead to reenter the property. The homeowners will probably also need to call their homeowner’s insurance agent before they begin taking out any trash or beginning water damage cleanup. The insurance agency will most likely offer to send out an inspector for your claim quickly to take photos and assess the total loss.

Other tips for cleaning up after a house fire include:

  • Consider a dumpster delivery service. If your fire was a large one, you might have large furniture structural trash such as drywall, lots of clothing and linens, and other household goods that were burned, smoke damaged, or water damaged.
  • Personal Protective Equipment should always be worn, especially if you are doing water damage cleanup. Rubber boots and gloves, waders, and eye covers should be worn if there is substantial standing water. Always make sure the power remains turned off to the home as well while you are taking care of water damage to avoid electrocution.
  • Use tri-sodium phosphate cleaner to spot clean belongings with soot damage. You can also use TSP to clean walls, floors, cabinets, and some furniture. Mix with water and use a sponge to wipe surfaces down. TSP removes soot and smoke odor.
  • Hire a water damage cleanup professional when the damage is extensive. Often, firefighting ends up with an entirely saturated home and the best way to mitigate mold and mildew, remove soot, and complete a cleanout is to hire the professionals.

A house fire is one of the biggest disasters a homeowner can face but you don’t have to face the cleanup alone. Call a professional restoration company to help ensure your house is good as new once again.

If you’ve recently suffered a house fire call ServiceMaster of Pittsburgh at 412-376-4645.

 

Commercial Cleaning | Taking Commercial Cleaning to the Next Level with Spotlight Cleaning

Most cleaning companies offer commercial services such as vacuuming, sweeping, mopping, waxing, and taking out the garbage and wiping down surfaces. However, there are still many cleaning projects that businesses need, and employees don’t have the time or ability to complete during open hours. When you hire a commercial cleaning company to take care of your floor and basic cleaning services, you need to ask about these add on services for spotlight cleaning that will have your business shining from floor to ceiling and impressing your customers.

  1. High-Traffic Carpet Maintenance-There are certain areas of your office or business that get more wear and tear from foot traffic than others. Professional carpet maintenance ensures that the carpets stay uniform and clean no matter how many times they are walked across.
  2. Paneling, Trim, Doors-Have you ever checked the trim or paneling for dust? You might be surprised how much dirt and grime can build up around the perimeter of your office. Doors are the most touched surface in your business and can end up stained and dirty very quickly, especially if they are solid wood or painted rather than glass.
  3. Ceilings and Light Fixtures:Light tends to attract dust and if your business is a warehouse or has incredibly high ceilings, cleaning light fixtures might be dangerous for your employees. Let the professionals with the proper safety equipment handle cleaning your ceilings and light fixtures.
  4. Entry Areas, Break Rooms, Public Areas-There are many places that aren’t usually included in commercial cleaning on the salesfloor such as locker or break rooms, entry areas or vestibules, and public areas such as lactation rooms or waiting rooms. Booking a specialized cleaning service for these areas is a great way to ensure they are staying clean and sanitary.
  5. Hard Surface Flooring Cleaning-Go beyond mopping and sweeping and order a strip and wax to keep your hard surface floors shining, new looking, and free from grime and staining. Stripping and waxing can also remove streaks and stains from moving furniture or gondolas.

Commercial cleaning is one of the best ways to ensure the longevity of your business’s structural elements such as flooring and walls. These services also ensure a safe, sanitary, and healthy environment for not only your employees but customers and clients as well.

If you’re ready to schedule a spotlight service in Pittsburgh, call ServiceMaster at 412-376-4645.

Mold Removal Company | How to Design a Mold Resistant Home

Homeowners who have ever dealt with a flood know that their worst enemy is mold. In fact, homeowners are often doing everything they can to make their homes mold-resistant if they live in coastal communities, flood zones, or have dealt with basement flooding from storm runoff. One of the best times to design a mold-resistant home is when you are remodeling or building new; however, a mold removal company can help homeowners with some of these upgrades if they ever do suffer a mold infestation.

  1. Mold Resistant Building Materials- There are building materials that are made specifically to be mold-resistant, and others that don’t take mold resistance into consideration at all when being manufactured. Some building materials are also naturally resistant to mold such as stone or tile. Make sure to ask your mold removal company about mold-resistant drywall.
  2. Seal Concrete Floors-Concrete subflooring needs to be coated with a waterproof crystalline sealant to create a moisture barrier between the slab and any flooring you install on top of the slab.
  3. Insulate Pipes-If the temperatures get below freezing during winter months, you need to make sure your pipes are insulated to protect against cracking or bursting. Even the tiniest leaks can cause moisture to promote mold growth.
  4. Filtered HVAC-Your HVAC system can be equipped with a filter or air purifier that catches mold spores in the air, so they aren’t circulated around your home. This is one of the first upgrades a mold removal company might recommend if a mold infestation has already occurred.
  5. Dehumidifiers-Most central air systems pull humidity out of the air; however, if a home is prone to moisture or humidity (look for condensation on the walls or windows) a dehumidifier can be installed to help pull any additional moisture from the air. Small, transportable ones are affordable and perfect for small homes.

If you ever notice or suspect mold growth in your home, call a mold removal company as soon as possible to set up a mitigation consultation. Mold can pose serious health threats to humans and animals you care about and must be removed immediately.

Call ServiceMaster of Pittsburgh to learn more about mold removal today at 412-376-4645.

 

Water Damage Cleanup | Best Flood Resistant Flooring

When you live in a flood zone such as a coastal community or city where there is frequent rain or a high water table, there are special considerations you should take when choosing flooring for your home. Water damage cleanup companies tear out carpet more than any other flooring during flooding because it is prone to mold and mildew after being saturated in water. Laminate flooring is also prone to peeling, curling, or warping after it’s been saturated. Replacing your flooring can be the most labor-intensive and expensive parts of water damage cleanup. If you buy a home where flooding has occurred, you should consider replacing the flooring with these top flood-resistant materials.

Tile-Tile flooring is adhered to the concrete slab using mortar when the home is in a coastal, humid, or floor prone climate. Avoid using mastic adhesive as it is not water-resistant. The tile material is impervious and resistant to mold and mildew. Porcelain grade tiles are the highest-rated for durability and density. Tile is also extremely easy to work with during water damage cleanup if a flood does happen.

Treated Concrete- Concrete floors that have been treated refer to a coating that is applied such as epoxy or stain. Epoxy is common for garages and basements because it is oil and solvent resistant. Concrete floors are not typically found inside homes; however, if you choose not to install flooring and have just the concrete subflooring, a stain can help add color and dimension.

Rubber Flooring- This nonpermanent flooring is great to use in basements in flood prone areas. Rubber flooring comes in large rollout mats and is water and mold resistant. Rubber flooring can be adhered to the concrete floor using double sided carpet tape and if water damage cleanup is ever needed due to flooding, the flooring can be rolled up and carried out easily to get cleaned and dry.

If you don’t know which flooring type is best for your home, make sure to talk to your restoration team about their recommendations for flood-resistant flooring. They can let you know the most durable types available in your area.

If you need to talk to a professional about a water damage cleanout in your home, call ServiceMaster of Pittsburgh at 412-376-4645.

Water Damage Cleanup | Top Reasons for Basement Flooding

No homeowner is surprised that basements run a risk of flooding. They are, after all, below ground at least partially. However, some homeowners are shocked to learn that basement flooding and water damage cleanup can be needed all year round, even during the dry season. Basement flooding is common, especially because many of the common causes of basement flooding are out of human control, but many causes can be prevented.

Most Common Causes for Water Damage Cleanup in the Basement

You probably know that basements can flood when storms or a power failure cause the sump pump to backup or stop working, but some of the other common reasons include

  • Failure of the drainage tile
  • Improper sealing of the floor and walls
  • Improperly installed or damaged downspouts and gutters
  • Clogged gutters
  • How water tank failure
  • Water supply line damage such as broken or clogged pipes
  • Improperly sealed basement windows
  • Leakage from water in rooms above the basement
  • Appliance leaks or damage such as washer overflow, leaking refrigerator or sink, toilet overflow, etc.
  • Hurricane, flood, or tropical storm

Steps to Water Damage Cleanup in Greater Pittsburg

If you’ve recently experienced basement flooding and need water damage cleanup, the first thing you need to do is turn off the power. Water and electricity do not mix, and electrocution can be deadly. Next, you’ll want to call a professional restoration crew to assist if the water damage is severe. Professionals are trained in mold mitigation and will ensure that the cleanup process is done correctly from start to finish.

Because water can damage your personal property so quickly, the next thing you will want to do, as long as you have personal protective equipment such as rubber boots, gloves, and goggles, is to start removing everything from the room. Take furniture and other belongings outside if you can where they can dry, or to a room where you can use fans to help dry the items. The cleanup crew will suction out the water, clean or remove the carpet depending on the damage, and perform mold mitigation to ensure that nothing grows after they are gone. The entire cleanup process can take between three and seven days in many cases.

If you need water damage cleanup in your basement, call ServiceMaster of Greater Pittsburgh at 413-528-6077.

 

 

Commercial Cleaning | Getting Your Office Ready to Reopen During COVID-19

As more states are starting to loosen restrictions and enter more progressive stages of reopening, you might decide that it’s time to bring your employees back to work in the office and increase productivity. One of the most challenging tasks you will have as a business owner is how to ensure your office workers stay healthy and safe during the COVID-19 pandemic to prevent the spread of illness in the workplace. There are federal guidelines that lay out social distancing rules and occupancy limits, as well as state and local ordinances and laws you will need to follow. Still, one of the best investments you can make right now is in commercial cleaning services.

What is a Commercial Cleaning?

Commercial cleaning companies specialize in cleaning retail, office, and buildings used for commercial purposes, rather than residential homes. Services included from these companies can include ATP testing, holistic or green product options, mold remediation, deodorization, carpet, and floor cleaning, air duct cleaning, and sick building syndrome services.

Why Is Professional Cleaning Important?

Professional cleaning services not only get your office clean and disinfected before employees return to work, but when added as an ongoing service, these services can reduce the chances of your employees getting sick because of illnesses and viruses in the office. You would be surprised about the number of bacteria that stay stuck in carpet fibers, under desks, and built up in the wax on tile flooring. Professional cleaning companies use deep cleaning methods to extract dirt and grime from your carpets and floor.

These companies also increase the purity of the air and can be beneficial for customers, clients, and employees that have breathing difficulties associated with asthma or allergies. Commercial cleaning companies are also great for cleaning up after special projects such as changing the layout of the work or retail space, remodeling, or after a big event such as the office Christmas party.

If you’re interested in discussing COVID-19 and commercial cleaning, contact ServiceMaster of Greater Pittsburgh at 412-528-6077.

Water Damage Services | What Is A Sump Pump?

Moving into your first home is exciting; however, the transition between renting and ownership means having to take care of your own maintenance. One part of owning a home that most first-time homeowners may not know about at first is the function of a sump pump. However, if you ever need water damage services, you’re likely to become familiar with sump pumps quickly.

Sump pumps are pumps installed in basements or crawlspaces to keep the home from flooding. These pumps need to be in the lowest point of the home and installed inside of a sump pit. Water flowing underground or seeping into the soil during torrential downpours or flooding will be pumped away from the home to prevent water from entering the basement or crawlspace.

Do I Need A Sump Pump?

Sump pumps are required to be in homes due to the U.S. Federal Clean Water Act of 1987.  If your home was built before 1987, you should check to ensure there is a sump pump in the basement.

Does the Sump Pump Work Automatically?

Automatic sump pumps do not run continuously; however, homeowners don’t need to do anything to activate them. A float activator arm acts as a pressure sensor to turn on the pump. The mechanism looks similar to what you’ll see inside of your toilet tank. When the float activator is not working correctly, your sump pump can fail and cause basement flooding. Luckily, water damage services are available to help you correct the situation. There are two types of automatic sump pumps—submersible and pedestal. Water damage services can help you decide which is best for your home.

Manual sump pumps are also available and great to be used in case of emergency when your automatic sump pump fails, and you need a backup. Manual sump pumps aren’t as convenient as automatic but work the same way.

Water damage services are ready to assist you when your sump pump fails and your basement floods. Calling the professionals is the best way to ensure that flooding from groundwater is cleaned up the safest way possible.

If you’ve had a sump pump failure, call ServiceMaster of Pittsburgh at 412-314-3832.

 

 

Water Damage Services | How Much Do Water Damage Services Cost?

One reason many homeowners are hesitant to contact water damage services is that they are afraid of the price tag. The national average for water damage restoration is around $3,000; however, some services can be a little as $500 to or as high as $8,000 in some areas. This seems like a lot; however, many homeowners don’t realize what is included in water damage services and how many steps are involved in the cleanup process.

What Does Water Damage Services Include?

For most flooding situations, restoring water damage will include gray water extraction, removing furniture and other belongings, cleaning carpets and floors, cleaning surfaces, drying the room, and repairing any drywall and ceiling damage. Mildew and mold mitigation can also be included but will add to the cost of the project.

Other services you may need to help finish restoration after a flood include roofers, plumbers, and carpenters. Many times, during a flood, doors, windows, trim, flooring, and pipes need to be fixed or replaced. If new appliances need to be purchased, they will also add to the total cost of restoration. This is why homeowners need to keep in mind that restoration is not only about water removal and drying but can be much more complicated.

The hazard level of the water will also impact how much your water damage services cost. There are three categories of damage—white, grey, and black. Black level hazards such as human waste from a sump pump failure or sewage backup will be the most expensive while white will cost the least. Clean water cleanup, such as a broken pipe, can cost as little a few hundred dollars to mitigate, whereas a sewer backup or flood easily can cost more than $3,000.

If you need water damage services, call ServiceMaster of Pittsburgh at 412-314-3832.

 

Water Damage Removal | Common Causes of Household Water Damage

Homeowners need water damage removal for more reasons than a roof leak or basement flooding. There are many ways that water damage can occur in your home that you might not realize. Most of the causes of household water damage come from accidents or a breakdown in appliances that can be surprising but also sometimes avoidable. When these things happen, however, there are ways you can clean up the mess quickly and efficiently.

Household Water Damage Causes

If you’re noticing water on the floor in your home, you’ll first need to figure out what is causing the leak or flooding. Some of the most common reasons you’ll need water damage removal in your home include:

  • Washer malfunction
  • Kitchen sink overflow
  • Kitchen sink pipes leaking
  • Garbage disposal clog
  • Dishwasher malfunction
  • Dishwasher clog
  • Sump pump failure
  • Bathroom sink overflow
  • Bathroom sink pipes leaking
  • Bathtub or shower overflow
  • Bathtub or shower pipes leaking
  • Burst pipes
  • Toilet overflow
  • Toilet clog
  • Toilet malfunction
  • Waterbed leak
  • Aquarium leak

Most of these causes of household water damage removal can be cleaned up easily and quickly, but some leaks can cause significant damage that needs professional assistance.

Even when small household leaks happen, homeowners need to ensure that water cleanup is complete to avoid mildew, mold, and rot. If the water damage is caused by an appliance, you’ll need to ensure that all area around, under, and behind the appliance is dry. This means you’ll need to pull them out to clean and dry them properly. You may need to use a wet/dry vacuum and a carpet shampooer to clean the carpeting in your home after water cleanup. When cleaning surfaces, ensure that you’re using a bleach solution to ward off any mildew and mold growth.

If you’ve had household water damage, call ServiceMaster of Pittsburgh at 412-314-3832.