Recent Posts

Let a pro take care of your mold

4/2/2018 (Permalink)

Mold occurs quite often. The source of the molds, the spores themselves, can float into your home in the air, on pets' fur or hair and peoples' clothing. It can already be inside if there are moist places, hidden away in closets, utility or laundry rooms and even under the sinks in the kitchen or bathrooms. Air ducts are a favorite collection point of mold spores since being airborne organisms; they readily are circulated throughout your home. SERVPRO recommends keeping the RH-relative humidity of your home below 45%. This does inhibit the proliferation of mold colonies.

Mold can impact people with negative health effects. It can undermine building materials as it consumes the cellulose food source. The fuel for molds can be anything that is organic. Including wood, that wallboard, and furniture as well as clothing and fabric on the furniture. It needs moist spaces and relatively stale air. It thrives inside walls, especially when a leaking pipe creates the perfect conditions for moisture, warmth, and lack of sunlight.

Certain precautions must be exercised in mold remediation servicing. If you are not in a situation to handle this in a certified, safe way, and few homeowners are, calling a mold remediation and restoration company like SERVPRO is the best defense against a mold attack. Mold remediation is not a wise DIY project. Let the pros resolve the issues.

All A/C and heating systems will be turned off to stifle the circulation of mold spores. Skilled SERVPRO  technicians, following IICRC industry standards, will vacuum out the air ducts using an HEPA filtration system. Antifungal, antimicrobial, and disinfecting products will be introduced within the HVAC unit to destroy mold and mitigate the chance of reoccurence. Bear in mind, it is unprofessional, and inaccurate, to claim total elimination of mold and mold spores from a household. Properly conducted mold remediation will return the interior environment of your home to a safe and sanitary condition. 

Containment is critical to keeping the dislodged spores from floating into otherwise uncontaminated areas. The process of finding and removing molds may require the tearing out of building materials that have been contaminated. This means the demolition of walls, ceilings or floors if grossly affected. Specialty sponges are used by the SERVPRO experts to help wipe down and remove mold growth. It extreme cases, porous materials like drywall may require bagging and disposing of in certified centers for contaminated and biohazardous materials.

These fungi are not something to treat as an afterthought, so if you detect or suspect the presence of this call SERVPRO of Idaho Falls/Rexburg (208) 523-5365 for quick and safe mold remediation.

Why is there water in my basement!?!?!?

3/13/2018 (Permalink)

If you discover standing water, slimy surfaces, or developing mold patches on a basement wall, it is crucial that you do not leave them untreated. The longer water damage is neglected, the harder it will be to repair and restore, and the costs can escalate.

FIRST:  Find the source of the water damage. Moisture can make its way inside a house from several different routes. Once you locate the source, you can start to think about a solution, but your first response should be one of investigation and examination. You can't fix what you don't see.

Most reported reasons why basements develop signs of water damage are;

Water Damage from Outside
- A leak in a home's roof can lead to a water problem in the crawlspace, as strange as that sounds. If a broken tile or other components let water in, it runs down the internal walls and through to the basement.
- For those of us living with Idaho snowstorms, basement windows need internal an internal drainage system.  Otherwise, the snow will just accumulate, melt, and seep into the basement.
- When landscaping, make sure that grades are designed to run away from the property. That way, the water cannot pool and seep through the foundation walls.
- If damp is only ever an issue following a rainstorm, the problem could be a poor quality sealant. This is an easy problem to fix. All that is needed is to replace the interior barriers around doors and windows. Sealants dry out, so you may have to keep replacing it every few years.
- Obstructed, ice dams, or cracked guttering could also be the culprit as overflowing water ends up right above the foundation of the house and the basement.
- You might simply have a high water table. If this is the case, the obstacle will unfortunately persist. There is not much that can be done to change it, but installing a sump pump will significantly decrease the chance of flooding leading to water damage.

Water Damage Inside:
- Interior plumbing, appliance malfunction, leaky faucets, frozen pipes, and condensation buildup may result in structural or water damaged personal items.
- If you can spot water making its way up through drains, the municipal sewer system may be under too much strain. You can alleviate this in your home by investing in a backflow valve. These are inexpensive and easily available. If a septic tank backs up, be sure to call SERVPRO to safely and quickly remove waste products from your water damaged Idaho home. "Like it never even happened."

Spring Waters Around the Corner

3/1/2018 (Permalink)

Heavy Idaho winter snowstorms are producing a large amount of snow pack in the mountains.  This will in all likely hood produce a heavy runoff in the upcoming spring months.

This heavy water saturation means there is a large potential for sub water to penetrate through homes and businesses by the way of foundation walls, basements and crawlspaces. 

This can happen in any age of building so whether you have a newer or older structure it is important to periodically check all underground levels for any water intrusion.

You may not be able to stop it entirely but catching it early and a call to SERVPRO can reduce further damage to structure and personal property.  SERVPRO will assist by using subpumps to remove the water, sandbags to help reduce further seepage, and dehumidifiers to control humidity until the sub water subsides.  So don't fret is you see water in your basement from an unknown source, simply call SERVPRO and let us help you determine the source of the water and give you best the idea for cleaning it up

Get Home Inspection For Mold BEFORE Purchase

1/31/2018 (Permalink)

This local homeowner contacted SERVPRO a little to late.

He had purchased his home with a clean disclosure statement from the seller.  However, within a short amount of time it became evident that mold was growing rampant in the kitchen and living room area.

A small leak in the walls had gone undiscovered and was creating the perfect growing conditions for mold to thrive in the warm, poorly ventilated environment.

The homeowner noticed a small wet spot in the corner carpet and pulled it up to see mold growing there.  After pulling up more of the carpet he could tell the problem was much bigger than he had hoped for.

SERVPRO workers discovered mold not only under the carpet in to the sub floor but it also ran up the walls in the kitchen and living areas.  

Had the homeowner contacted SERVPRO before he purchased the home. mold air quality testing could have been preformed and then the he could have negotiated the mold remediation in the price of the home

Commercial Building Safety

1/30/2018 (Permalink)

Whether you own your commercial building or are leasing it from another entity, it is always a good idea to have a safety plan in place in the possibility that disaster should strike.

SERVPRO offers a free Emergency Readiness Plan which will help you to determine the safest and quickest way to handle an unforseen emergency

Call your local SERVPRO today to set up a time to meet with one of our qualified personnel to go over the needs of your particular structure.

However, there are some things that you can do yourself to reduce that chances that disaster may strike

Before closing for the day, assign someone to check for the following:

Inspect bathrooms for any running water in sinks or toilets

In cooler weather familiarize yourself with any space heaters that may be in use.  If not already done so, unplug them from the wall sockets

When temperatures drop below freezing, set thermostats to an overnight level that will prevent pipes from freezing, ESPECIALLY if this has been a problem in the past

Make note of any tree branches that may be close to windows and have them trimmed down.  Strong winds can cause them to either swing in to the window or fall and break the glass

The Power of Water

1/11/2018 (Permalink)

Many businesses in West Yellowstone Montana close for the winter due to low tourist attendance.

This hotel owner had taken a few days off to relax in the warmth of the Nevada sun and returned to a 5 room disaster!!!!

A hose leading to one of the sinks had broken while he had been away.  The force from the water running for 3 days had actually bore a hole into the opposite wall.

SERVPRO responded quickly to the call, however the water had caused substantial damage to the initial room and flooded 4 other rooms as well.  In the initial room the water had wicked up the walls as high as 7 feet.

The grateful hotel owner was gracious enough to provide one of the hotel rooms for our staff to stay in while they completed the job.

Driggs Restaurant Chemical Fire

1/4/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Driggs Restaurant Chemical Fire NO EXIT

A Driggs Idaho restaurant owner was quite surprised when he arrived at his place of business one morning.  

When he arrived at his restaurant he knew there was a problem due to the black soot on the outside wall of his restaurant.  Immediately he thought there was a fire inside and call the fire department.

When they arrived and opened the doors there was no fire burning, however, there was considerable heat damage.

It appeared that cleaning rags with powerful chemicals placed in a laundry hamper had ignited at some point in the evening.  As the fire tried to take hold it consumed all of the oxygen in the room and eventually is had burned itself out.  

This did not stop it from smoldering however and the intense heat in the room caused everything plastic to eventually melt to a point of unrecognizability.

The picture posted here is of the exit sign that hangs over the outer door.  

SERVPRO was called to estimate losses and repairs.

Preparation is Best

12/22/2017 (Permalink)

This SERVPRO loss was reported in a home that is under construction and did not have any house wrap on it. This lack of preparation naturally exposed all of the framing and plywood to the elements

Recent storms in the area had dropped a large amount of rain during the building process and as such, the main floor had soaked up a significant amount of water.

As winter approached and temperatures became cooler the floor was unable to dry out. The combination of the wet flooring along with the crawlspace not having the proper ventilation needed encouraged mold to start to grow on the bottom of the sheeting.

The SERVPRO inspection showed that the whole main level had mold on the bottom side of the plywood.  Mold Remediation was necessary but the contractor was instructed to wrap the house correctly before any work began.

Water Water Everywhere

12/22/2017 (Permalink)

This SERVPRO loss occurred in an unoccupied home and was caused by lack of attention from a property manager

Due to forecasted freezing temperatures, the property manager was trying to do preventative maintenance by running water through the lines to prevent frozen pipes.

Unfortunately he did not monitor the sink in which the water was flowing, and the basin overflowed causing water to run under the flooring.

The water ran long enough that eventually it caused the wood flooring to begin to bow and then mold started to grow on the subfloor.

It was also discovered that enough water had spilled out of the sink that the ceiling of the bedroom directly below had standing water above the drywall.

SERVPRO tip, always keep your eyes on running water, especially in the home.

Do I Smell Bacon?

12/22/2017 (Permalink)

This SERVPRO reported loss was caused by a careless cook. 

A basement apartment was recently rented to a first time young resident with little cooking skills.

The resident was cooking bacon for the first time on her new stove.  The bacon grease caught on fire and the ensuing flames rose towards the ceiling. 

The heat from the fire melted the face of the microwave above the stove and the cabinets began to smolder. 

The ceiling had acoustic cork tiles that absorbed a lot of the smoke and needed to be removed.

While the fire was contained to the stove area the smoke traveled through each of the basement bedrooms and also in the stairwell leading up to the main level.

SERVPRO tips for grease fires

  • NEVER TRY TO PUT OUT A GREASE FIRE WITH WATER
  • Cover the fire with a large metal lid
  • If there's no lid nearby, douse the fire with salt or baking soda
  • Turn off the heat source if possible
  • As a last resort, use a fire extinguisher