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.

 

 

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 | When Your Pool Overflows and Causes Basement Leaks

Summer is upon us, and as you are filling up the swimming pool, one thing you need to keep in mind is accidentally flooding the basement or crawlspace. Many things could happen that can cause a pool to overfill or leak and cause a huge mess requiring water damage removal in your home or even your neighbors. Don’t worry, though! Even if the unthinkable happens and your basement is flooded, some professionals can assist in the restoration process.

Steps to Water Damage Removal and Basement Flooding

If your swimming pool has flooded your basement, there are a few steps you’ll need to take to ensure the proper water damage cleanup.

  1. Find The Foundation Leak-You’ll need to find where the crack in the foundation or crawlspace is located so that you can stop any additional water from entering the basement. You will most likely need a professional contractor to find a long term solution to a foundational problem.
  2. Water Removal- Your basement may have a sump pump that will remove the water from the basement, but if the pump has failed, you’ll need an alternative method. Wet/dry vacuums or pumps and hoses can be used to remove the water from your basement.
  3. Remove Furniture- Any items or furniture in your basement that have been saturated with water need to be removed from the basement and allowed to dry completely. If items can not be removed from the basement, but are salvageable, make sure to keep a fan on them.
  4. Drying Out- Once the water removal has occurred, you’ll need to run dehumidifiers and fans in the basement to circulate air and remove any leftover moisture. The fans will help to dry out the basement and any furniture or personal effects.
  5. Cleaning- The last step of water damage removal is to thoroughly clean all surfaces in the basement with a bleach solution. You’ll need to take care to mitigate any mold or mildew issues that you may see or smell.

Water damage in your basement needs to be taken care of immediately, and sometimes the situation can be overwhelming. Professional services are available to handle water damage in your basement, or anywhere else in your home or business.

If you’ve had a basement flood, call ServiceMaster of Pittsburgh at 412-314-3832.

 

 

Water Damage Cleanup | Top 5 Causes of Home Water Damage

Owning a home is one of the most rewarding investments you can make into your future. Owning property is a way to create generational wealth that can be passed to your children and grandchildren. However, many things can cause our homes to depreciate. Most people are aware of how natural disasters such as flooding can do irreparable damage to houses. However, several common household accidents can happen to anyone at any time, which will leave you in desperate need of professional water damage cleanup.

  1. Toilet Leaking or Flooding-When the toilet overflows or has a leak, your bathroom floors can start to saturate and get soft and saggy over time if the leak is not fixed. Take special precautions when cleaning up a toilet overflow with waste.
  2. Leaking Washing Machine- Your washer might start leaking water due to clogged drainage, worn-out piping, or ruptures to the rubber hoses. When water doesn’t drain properly from your machine, your clothes can get ruined also.
  3. AC/Water Heater Leaking- When the drainage system of your central air or water heater backs up due to clogged lines, they start to leak and ruin your walls and ceiling quickly. Your insulation can also become soggy and need to be replaced.
  4. Burst Pipes- When temperatures drop below freezing, your pipes can burst if water freezes inside of them. Pipes rupturing can flood every room of your house from floor to ceiling. The fire sprinkler systems in your commercial businesses can freeze and cause the need for water damage cleanup also.
  5. Sump Pump Failures- Sump pumps can fail during heavy rainstorms and flooding, or because of mechanical failure. When your sump pump floods your basement, chances are you will have hazardous waste that needs to be cleaned up as well. Homeowners need professional services for this kind of water damage cleanup.

Many of the top causes of home water damage can be prevented, but sometimes accidents happen, and we can’t stop flooding in our homes. Flooding in your home needs to be cleaned up as soon as possible to reduce damages and lower your risk of mold growth.

Do you need help with water damage cleanup? Call ServiceMaster of Greater Pittsburgh today at 412-419-3253

 

Water Damage Cleanup | Will Water Damage Decrease My Home Value?

When you purchase a home, it’s an investment into your future that you hope appreciates over the years. However, many unfortunate things can happen to harm your investment, including natural disasters. Sometimes, accidents in the home, such as a bathtub flooding, washing machine leaking, or sump pump failing, can also cause damage that will decrease your home’s value. Luckily, water damaged cleanup from a professional disaster restoration company like ServiceMaster can help you mitigate and repair the damage.

How Water Damage Can Affect Your Home

Quick water damage cleanup is vital for making sure your home isn’t damaged to the point of disrepair, especially when the damage is caused by storm flooding or sump pump failure. When hazardous waste is involved in water damage cleanup, homeowners need to hire professionals to mitigate the damage and restore your home.

Not only does water damage and hazardous waste ruin your property and contaminate the air, but the moisture will also encourage mold growth, which can have long term adverse effects on people, and pet’s, health. Mold can destroy the value of your home and make potential buyers turn their heads before they even come to see the house.

Most of the time, a home with flood damage can be saved from the mold as long as professional restoration happens immediately after the disaster. You should be aware, however, that homeowners are required by law to disclose mold and water damage issues to home buyers. If you sell your home and the new owners find mold, they may be able to sue you for damages. If you’re thinking about putting your home on the market and have had water damage cleanup in the past, you should consider getting a mold inspection before selling to protect you and the buyer.

Do you need help with water damage cleanup? Call ServiceMaster of Greater Pittsburgh today at 412-419-3253

Water Damage Cleanup | When Your Bathtub Overflows

Water Damage Cleanup | When Your Bathtub Overflows

Every homeowner has dealt with an accident in their home involving water at some point in time. One of the most common household water accidents that can happen (especially if you have kids!) is a bathtub overflow. You plug the tub, turn on the water, get distracted, and before you know it, there’s water flooding your bathroom. It happens to the best of us and fortunately, most bathroom floods are easy enough to clean up, although, in worst-case scenarios, professional water damage cleanup could be necessary.

Step to Cleaning Up A Flooded Bathroom

  1. Turn off the Water- This step seems like common sense, but in a state of panic it is easy to forget to do the simple things like turn off the water source. If your bathtub overflows, you should just be able to turn off the handle, but you might also need to find the water shut off valve to your home which is usually located by the water meter or in the basement.
  2. Turn off the Power- If you have a lot of standing water (more than an inch or two) you should turn off the power to the bathroom using the circuit box to ensure that no standing water can become electrified.
  3. Clean Up Standing Water- The first part of water damage cleanup is to remove the water. You’ll need to soak water up using towels, or suck the water out using a wet/dry shop vacuum or carpet cleaner.
  4. Dry it Out- Mold prevention is going to be very important after a flooded bathroom since this area is already a humid, moist place. Once the water is removed, you’ll need to use fans and possibly a dehumidifier to remove all moisture from the bathroom. Fans and open windows will help also if the weather permits.

Special concerns you might need to address for water damage cleanup in a flooded bathroom include dealing with raw sewage or human waste. This type of cleanup needs to be more detailed. And other safety measures need to be taken when cleaning up hazards like sewage.

If you need to call in the professionals, give ServiceMaster of Pittsburgh a call at 412-826-1010.

 

Flood Damage Cleanup | Before The Professionals Arrive

Flood Damage Cleanup | Before The Professionals Arrive

Flooding in your home is a disaster that can damage the floors, walls, your belongings, and your health. The worst floods can turn your entire house into a loss. Severe flooding can result in having to tear out drywall and rip up all the carpet. Homeowners who are lucky enough to suffer minimal water damage still need to have professional flood damage cleanup to ensure there is no mold growth, and that the water is removed properly.

There’s a few things you need to do before the professionals arrive if you can however:

  1. Turn off the Power- Water and electricity do not mix. Use the circuit breaker to cut power to your entire home, or the rooms that have been damaged by flooding.
  2. Ventilate the Room- Even if there is standing water in the room one of the first things you should do is begin to circulate the air, ventilate the room, and start the drying process. Open windows if you can, set up fans using extension cords to outlets in rooms that are not flood-damaged.
  3. Remove Furniture- When there is no risk of electrocution begin removing furniture and other belongings to prevent further water saturation. Take these items to a place where they can dry out and be cleaned.
  4. Remove Water- If your area has been hit by a natural disaster, it might be a while before professional flood damage cleanup companies can get to you. Mold begins growing after 48 hours so removing the water and starting flood damage cleanup as soon as possible is imperative. You might need buckets to remove water, a wet/dry vacuum or pumps if you have access to any in order to remove the water.

Flood damage cleanup professionals have tools to make the process go fast and efficiently as well as highly trained crews that can remediate mold and either clean or remove your carpets, damaged drywall, and other things that are water damaged. Protecting your family’s health after a flood is important and professionals can ensure that you don’t have to worry about the health hazard risks of mold after a flood.

If you’ve recently had a flood call ServiceMaster of Pittsburgh at 412-826-1010.

Water Damage Cleanup | How to Clean Up a Flooded Basement

Water Damage Cleanup | How to Clean Up a Flooded Basement

When burst pipes, natural disasters happen, or a failed sump pump leaves your basement with standing water, there are health and safety risks no matter how much water is present. Water damage cleanup needs to be completed quickly, but also correctly, to keep your family and property safe. Follow these steps to cleaning up a flooded basement:

  1. Turn off the Power- Never enter a basement with standing water while the power is on. Turn off the power via the circuit breaker. If the circuit breaker is located in the basement, you’ll need to call an electrician to turn off the power otherwise you’ll risk electrocution.
  2. Proper Safety Equipment- Waterproof boots, rubber gloves, and keeping your skin covered is very important for water damage cleanup. If there is mold in the basement, you’ll need proper masks and respirators as well.
  3. Water Removal- Within 48 hours of flooding mold can begin growing which is why it is important to dry out your basement as soon as possible. Water damage cleanup is best completed by professionals, especially if the water level is significant. You may be able to use a wet/dry vacuum to remove a few inches of water but could be in need of buckets as well.
  4. Dry Out the Basement- After the standing water is gone you’ll need to try out the floors, carpet, and anything else that became saturated. Open the windows and place large fans in the basement to circulate the air. You should also look for a dehumidifier to remove the moisture from the air. You may have to remove wet drywall and replace it. Carpet might also need to be replaced if mold has begun to grow.
  5. Cleanup- After the water is gone and the basement is dry, it’s time to clean up the walls and floors to remove any dirt and silt that may be leftover from the flooding.  This will help with the initial water damage cleanup.

After you remove water from your basement and complete cleanup, you’ll need a mold inspection to ensure there is no mold hiding in your basement. Professional cleanup companies can provide excellent mold remediation services.

Contact Us for Your Water Damage Cleanup

If you’ve recently suffered flood damage, call ServiceMaster of Pittsburgh at 412-314-3832.

Flood Damage Cleanup | Flooding Complications Homeowners Should Know

Flood Damage Cleanup | Flooding Complications Homeowners Should Be Aware Of

When you live in coastal communities, you need to be more aware than others of the potential complications that come with flooding, especially during hurricane and storm season. While homeowners on the coast might be more at risk, there are plenty of communities where flooding occurs, and everyone needs to learn about the possible complications flooding can cause in your home. To avoid some of these complications, you need flood damage cleanup immediately after a flood.

  1. Windows Won’t Close Completely-Flooding can cause your window trip to warp, the seals to degrade, and often, after a destructive flood, new windows are needed.
  2. Doors Jam or Won’t Latch-Water damage warps wood and can make your door swell and no longer latch or lock properly.
  3. Cracks, Peeling, Curling of Flooring-Flood damage cleanup can’t always save your flooring after a natural disaster. Standing water can destroy flooring, no matter what material it’s made from.
  4. Sinking Foundation-One of the signs of a sinking foundation is when the front porch or stoop starts to sink and become uneven. You might also notice cracks in the walls or bowing basement walls. The crawl space floor may also soften and sag. This is dangerous and the longer you avoid flood damage cleanup, the worse it will be.
  5. Leaning Chimneys-You might not realize that flooding can damage your chimney, but a leaning or cracking chimney is often a sign that your home has undergone serious water damage.
  6. Mold Damage-Mold can cause allergic reactions, odor, and be damaging to your home’s integrity. The sooner you have flood damage cleanup completed, the less likely you’ll be to have mold growing in your home.
  7. Electrical Damage-Your electrical system is very fragile when it comes to water damage. You might have flickering lights, outlets that don’t work, circuit breaker issues, or can even experience electrical shock and fires.

If you’ve recently experienced a natural disaster you need to have flood damage cleanup done right away so that these complications don’t get out of hand. Sometimes the flood damage complications can be worse than the actual flood.

If you are looking for flood damage cleanup companies, call ServiceMaster of Greater Pittsburg.  Our team of service professionals is efficient, professional, and quick at their jobs, which can save you time and money at the end of your remodel project. Call ServiceMaster of Greater Pittsburg to discuss your residential or commercial cleaning needs today at 412-528-5986.