Thursday, January 24, 2013

Water Damage - Preventing Loss and Choosing a Restoration Company

Water damage comes in many forms; from bursting pipes, to roof leaks, to sewage back-ups, and more. Did you know YOU have the right to choose a restoration company after a water loss, fire damage, or mold intrusion, NOT the insurance company? It is important to choose a company that is experienced, competent, and insured.

Preventing Water Damage
There are things you can do to help prevent water damage, or limit the extent of the damage should water damage occur.
Install Water Alarms
You can purchase alarms that will sound when they come into contact with water. Place these alarms near water sources such as dishwashers, washing machines, and toilets. These alarms will help minimize damage by alerting you to a probem early, and can be purchased at hardware stores or online.
Shut Water Off
When you plan to leave your home unattended for a period of time, turn the water supply off at the street. Often, the worst water damage situations occur when pipes burst while a homeowner is out of town.
Leave Pipes Dripping When Temperatures Drop
Freezing temperatures can lead to bursting pipes. Leave exterior pipes dripping when temperatures drop to help prevent this.

Three Types of Water Contamination
There are three types, or "categories" of water damage. The first category is clean water, which usually happens when a plumbing line breaks or from falling rainwater. Category two water is possibly contaminated, such as a washing machine or dishwasher overflow, or broken aquariums. Lastly, category three water, which is known as black water. This is highly contaminated water that may come from sewage backups, natural flooding, or groundwater runoff. Water may change categories due to time, temperature, humidity, and the materials it comes into contact with.
What to Look For in A Water Damage Restoration Company

Two major training schools, the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning, and Restoration Certification (IICRC) and the National Organization of Remediators and Mold Inspectors (NORMI), provide certification and set the standards for the cleaning and restoration industry. Choose a company that employs technicians with certifications in Water Damage Restoration and Mold Remediation from these organizations.
While some companies claim to be able to perform water damage restoration, they more often than not lack the expertise and the equipment to do a thorough job. Choose a company that specializes in water damage restoration.
Proper Water Damage Restoration requires the use of special drying equipment such as high velocity fans and dehumidifiers, moisture detection tools, and more. Ask the company what type of equipment they use, and ensure they will perform moisture detection.
Any company you choose should be fully insured for handling water loss situations and mold remediation. They should also have worker's compensation insurance.

A good reputation is extremely important. While not every customer will have good things to say about a company, happy customers say a lot about a company.
Do Your Homework
Make sure you've done your research and phoned around before deciding on a company to use. Chat with friends or co-workers, or do a search online to find out what others have been saying about the water restoration company of your choice. Make sure the company has the relevant certifications and insurance, along with friendly, highly-trained staff.

Get it Sorted Fast
Water damage is something that you can't wait too long to deal with. Water damage that is left alone only worsens, leading to mold infestations, disease, and even permanent damage to the structural integrity of the building. Do your research quickly. Better yet, when putting together an emergency contact list for your household, make sure a water damage restoration company is added to it, so, if you ever have the need, you can just make the call right away.

What You Can Expect From Seminole Carpet Cleaning
We at Seminole Carpet Cleaning understand that experiencing a water loss of any size is a difficult and stressful experience. With over 20 years of industry experience, we have seen it all before! We specialize in water damage restoration and have an emergency response team available 24/7 for flood control service. 

You can count on our technicians to arrive quickly, help minimize the immediate damage water can cause, and develop a specific plan based on your scenario to get your home and life back to normal as soon as possible. Our IICRC and NORMI certified technicians are trained to adhere to industry standards, and we can work with all insurance companies to assist you with filing your claim.

Happy, informed customers say it all, and we have them! We believe it is very important to inform our customers about everything we are doing in their home during the restoration process. We provide a booklet that explains most of what we do for a typical water loss scenario, and why we do it, and our team is available to answer any questions you may have.

Below is a very basic description of what you can expect from us when we enter your home for a typical category 1 water loss situation:
  1. Moisture detection - We will use our specialized moisture detection equipment to determine the extent of water loss. Water may travel into adjacent rooms and into drywall or other porous materials. We will check surrounding areas and walls for moisture intrusion.
  2. Antimicrobial Application - We use and apply the appropriate antifungal, germicide, or antimicrobial treatment, depending on the source of water, to help inhibit the growth of microorganisms.
  3. Extraction - We will remove as much of the water from carpet, cushioning, and hard surfaces as possible using water extracton tools.
  4. Evaporation and Dehumidification - Once the excess water is removed, we must concentrate on changing water from a liquid to vapor form using evaporation. By using specifically placed air movers, we can maximize evaporation. We also must focus on removing the evaporated water from the structure through a drying system. This may involve using use of a mechanical, or closed, drying system through the use of dehumidifiers. Using specialized equipment and scientific formulas we can determine the correct amount of equipment to promote the most efficient drying environment.
  5. Daily checks - After the drying environment is set you can expect to see us daily until your structure has been successfully restored. We will keep accurate logs to track your progress and will show and explain these logs, along with any other questions you might have, at your request.
  6. We will assist you in any way possible during the restoration process. We can work with your insurance company to help you file a claim for large water losses.

Visit our website for more information on water damage restoration service

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Carpet Stains: When to Fight, When to Surrender

Recently, Service Magic posted an article about removing stains from your carpet with products that can be found in the home. We think it's great and would like to share that article with you!

If you're reading this, there's a good chance it's already too late and you need to call a carpet cleaning professional. Unless you had the insight to rush to your computer and haven't yet tried your own carpet stain removal, you probably have a permanent carpet stain.

What You Can Try
First, remove as much of the staining substance as possible. Then, using a clean towel or rag, put isopropyl rubbing alcohol on the towel and gently blot the affected area. If this doesn't begin to work, stop. If you rub the alcohol in too deeply, you may damage the latex backing.

Next, try a non-lanolin, non-bleach dishwashing detergent. Mix 1 teaspoon with a quart of water. Again, blot with the towel. Using a spray bottle rinse the stain and blot dry. Then, spray again lightly, this time allowing the carpet to dry under a weighted paper towel. If the stain still isn't gone, moisten the spot with a 3% mix of hydrogen peroxide and leave to dry for one hour. If that doesn't work, it's probably time to call a professional.

Have You Made the Carpet Stain Worse?
If you've already tried carpet stain removal and it didn't work or got worse, you may have inadvertently made the stain permanent. These are some of the activities that can cause a stain to set, meaning you need to call a professional:

+ Scrubbing the stain
+ Applying heat to the affected carpet
+ Ignoring the stain
+ Drowning the carpet in cleaning solution
+ Failing to remove any excess substance

It's also important to use a clean, dry cloth and you should always pretest the carpet in an inconspicuous spot. Apply the cleaning solution to the cloth, not directly on the stain.

Did You Ever Have a Chance?
Some carpet stains are created by compounds that irreparably change your carpet's color. When this happens, your only recourse is to call your service professional. More than likely, the stained area will need to be replaced with extra carpeting or a patch cut from an inconspicuous place in the carpet. Some of the compounds that issue this death sentence are fertilizers and insecticides, hair dyes, iodine, bleach, alkaline cleaners, acne medication, and acid toilet bowl cleaners. Pet urine can also cause color loss on delicate fibers such as wool, or when left on carpet for long periods of time.

What to Do Next Time
Before another carpet stain happens, you should read the carpet manufacturer's manual on carpet stain removal. It's entirely possible your carpet should be handled in a specific way when it's stained to protect the carpet. Also, have a small amount of pre-mixed dishwashing solution, the longer you let the stain sit the harder it's going to be to remove.

Read more:

If you are unable to remove the stain at home using the steps above, we can help! Call our office at 850-222-5326 for assistance