Recent Posts

Crawlspace Moisture Problems

5/2/2018 (Permalink)

Do you have problems with moisture in the crawlspace of your Huntsville home? Has a water leak caused mold, mildew or wood rot?

Call SERVPRO of North Madison County and we can handle that for you. Our trained and certified mold remediation technicians can diagnose your crawlspace moisture problem and get your crawlspace dried out in no time. Our technicians will remove any wet insulation in your crawlspace, treat the mold and mildew with an anti microbial solution, dry the wet floor joists or subfloor, and remove and reset the vapor barrier so that you have no more problems of moisture damaging your home environment.

If you have a mold problem in your home or business, consider the following facts:

  • Significant mold growth can occur in 48-72 hours.
  • Mold may present a greater risk to children, the elderly, and anyone with respiratory problems.
  • A strong, musty odor may indicate hidden mold behind drywall or under carpeting.

What to Do:

  • Stay out of affected areas.
  • Turn off the HVAC system and fans.
  • Contact SERVPRO for mold remediation services.

What Not to Do:

  • Don’t touch or disturb the mold.
  • Don’t blow air across any surfaces with visible or suspected mold growth.
  • Don’t attempt to dry the area yourself.
  • Don’t spray bleach or other disinfectants on the mold.

Don’t forget to call your local SERVPRO of North Madison County to get a free estimate!

SERVPRO Specializes In Flooded Basements

5/2/2018 (Permalink)

A basement can flood at any time, although flooding most often occurs during heavy rainfall which is common in Huntsville and Madison County during springtime. Basements are inherently prone to flooding because they are the lowest level of a building and are normally built partly or entirely below ground level. There are a number of reasons why your basement could flood, including: 

  • A blocked or failed sewer lateral pipe
  • Heavy rain causes surface water to pool around your home
  • Storm sewer backup
  • Sanitary sewer backup
  • Foundation drainage failure
  • Water supply-line break or hot-water tank failure
  • And many more

Have Questions about Basement Flooding?

Call Today - (256) 261-3266

If flood water is not handled quickly and properly, it can jeopardize your health and safety, and cause severe damage to your home’s structure. Remember, the longer you wait, the worse the problem will get.

The bottom line: a flooded basement can jeopardize your health, safety, and your home’s integrity. It’s worth making a call to SERVPRO of North Madison County and let our trained, professional crews handle the situation safely and correctly. We have earned the trust of hundreds of homeowners, business owners, and property professionals.

We are Flooded Basement Specialists:

  • We are Available 24 hours/7 days per week
  • We’re a Preferred Vendor to many National Insurance Companies
  • We Bill The Insurance Directly – One Less Thing For You To Worry About
  • Our Technicians are Highly-Trained  in Water Restoration Techniques
  • We use S500 IICRC Restoration Standards
  • Advanced Inspection and Extraction Equipment

Basement Flooded? Call Us Today – We’re Ready To Help (256) 261-3266

Lunch & Learn With SERVPRO!

4/23/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial Lunch & Learn With SERVPRO! Call for a Lunch & Learn today!

Do you work for a real estate office or insurance agency? Are you part of a company that could benefit from having a quick knowledge of restoration and commercial cleaning options for your clients?

We can offer you and your coworkers a great opportunity for to learn all of SERVPRO's services that are relevant to you and your industry. 

But wait...why not do it over coffee and donuts? Or maybe lunch? Or fresh, homemade cookies?

Are we getting your attention yet?

Our SERVPRO marketing representatives would love to chat with you and your coworkers and let you know about all that SERVPRO of North Madison County has to offer you. Whether you find yourself dealing with a disaster situation or you just need to have some general cleaning or mold testing done, we want you to know that SERVPRO is here to help.

There is no cost for a Lunch & Learn, just give us a call and make an appointment and our marketing representatives will come to you! It is only approximately 15-30 minutes in duration, and participants are free to ask questions and chat as long as is needed. 

If you are interested in setting up a SERVPRO Lunch & Learn for you and your coworkers, call us and we will schedule a date and time that works best for you! All you'll have to do is be present and hungry to eat good food and learn a little more about how SERVPRO of North Madison County can help with your cleaning and restoration needs.

Vandalism Tips

12/29/2017 (Permalink)

Vandalism and graffiti on your property can be very frustrating and upsetting. It can range from relatively minor pranks to mischievous destruction of property.  Simple acts of vandalism, like breaking a window, can often cause significant water and mold damage issue if not addressed in a timely manner.  

Here are some tips in case vandals do strike your property.  

DO:

  • Hose or wash egg or other residue damage from building exterior as soon as possible.
  • Carefully vacuum glass particles from carpets and upholstery.
  • Save containers revealing the ingredients of products used in vandalism damage.
  • Record all damage and photograph when possible.

DON'T:

  • Attempt to remove ink, paint or cosmetic stains.
  • Operate damaged lamps or appliances.
  • Discard broken or damaged pieces from porcelain, furniture or other contents that may be used for repair.

Preventing Frozen Pipes for Businesses

12/28/2017 (Permalink)

Cold temperatures can reach areas of your facility that you cannot see or seldom visit, such as:

  • Crawl spaces
  • Closets
  • Enclosed spaces (e.g., attics, lofts, roof spaces)
  • Warehouses
  • Isolated storage areas

Cold weather preparedness is important to help reduce potential business interruptions and related losses resulting from cold temperatures.

Domestic Water Piping

In severe cold, water pipes have the potential to freeze and break. If safe to do so, make sure pipes that are located in isolated and/or poorly heated spaces are shut off and drained or protected with a supplemental heating source.

Protect Your Fire Protection Sprinklers

Fire protection sprinkler systems are dependent on the ability of water to flow freely when needed. Ensure that wet piping systems, which may be subject to cold temperatures, are sufficiently heated to prevent freezing.

Severe cold weather can also delay the response time of the local fire department; therefore, it is imperative to properly maintain your fire protection systems.

Lastly, if heating is lost in a building protected by wet sprinklers, it should be restored immediately. Only after exhausting all options to re-establish sufficient heat, sprinkler systems should be shut off and completely drained. 

Some prevention strategies to consider:

  • Properly insulate and/or provide approved heat tracing for water-filled pipes located in exterior walls or unheated spaces.
  • Drain any piping that is not required during the winter months, if possible.
  • Maintain a minimum temperature of 40° F (4.4° C) in building areas with processes susceptible to freezing, wet-pipe sprinkler systems, fire pump houses and dry-pipe valve enclosures.
  • Ensure that anti-freeze sprinkler systems have sufficient concentration (appropriate specific gravity readings) of antifreeze to withstand freezing weather.
  • Inspect dry systems to help ensure air settings are correct, air maintenance systems are in good operating condition, and any pipe closets are well insulated. If any heat tape or heating systems are being used, ensure that they are UL-listed for this specific purpose and are in good operating condition. Dry-pipe sprinkler systems low points and auxiliary drains should be opened and drained of any water or condensation.
  • Any branch lines on wet sprinkler systems exposed or subject to extreme cold weather should be insulated and heat traced. Electric heat tracing should be UL-listed for this specific purpose.
  • Fire pump test headers should be checked to ensure they have been properly drained.
  • Fire pump and dry-pipe sprinkler system equipment rooms should be checked routinely to ensure the heaters are in good operating condition.
  • The use of low temperature supervision can help to ensure rooms are being properly heated.  

A Roof Leak Can Lead To Mold Damage

12/26/2017 (Permalink)

If you discover that your roof is leaking, it is extremely important to take prompt action to have it repaired.  Not doing so may put your entire home at risk.  A roof leak, even a minor one, could be an indicator of a much greater problem.  Any size leak in your roof can cause a great deal of damage if it persists long enough.  Make sure you do not let it continue once a leak is discovered.

Usually a roof leak will be noticed from the inside of the home when water rings or ceiling stains form on the ceiling. A leak can create an environment that can lead to ceiling instability, water intrusion through cracks or electrical receptacles, deterioration of the structure and even mold growth.  Early detection and proactive maintenance can greatly reduce the damage and cost of these repairs.  It may be difficult to readily identify the source of the water intrusion, which is why water rings or leaks should never be ignored. 

Roofs are one of the biggest protectors of our home and over time they can become damaged due to bad weather, harsh climates and poor maintenance.  The strength and longevity of a roof can also be compromised due to poor quality materials or improper installation so make sure you hire a professional company with experience who stands behind their work.  When it comes to protecting your home, investing in quality materials and workmanship is always worth the cost!

What To Do If A Fire Starts In Your Apartment Building

12/19/2017 (Permalink)

If you live in an apartment or condominium you need to know how to get out quickly if a fire starts. Follow these steps to stay safe.

Stay Calm

  • In the event of a fire, stay calm. Move to the exit as you have practiced. Call the fire department once you are outside. 
  • If your door feels warm to the touch, do not attempt to open it. Call 9-1-1 and tell the dispatcher your apartment number and that you can’t open your door. 
  • Stuff the cracks around the door with towels, rags, bedding, or tape. Cover vents. 
  • Wait at a window and signal for help with a flashlight or by waving a white cloth. 
  • If your apartment door is cool to the touch, open it slowly. Stay low and check for smoke or fire in the hallway. If the hallway is safe, follow your building’s evacuation plan. 
  • Never use an elevator to escape a fire. Always use the stairs.

Wait Outside for the Fire Department

  • Once you are outside, move away from the building. Give firefighters and fire trucks plenty of space. 
  • Stay outside. Do not go back inside for any reason. 
  • If you think someone is still inside, tell firefighters where you think they are. 
  • Wait until firefighters tell you it’s safe to go back inside.

Flood Terms And Flood Insurance

12/19/2017 (Permalink)

In North Alabama, we know how drastic the weather can be and how suddenly it can change. Heavy rains and flash flooding put homes and businesses in jeopardy of flooding.  Harvest and Toney neighborhoods have had flooding issues this year.  It is important to know the terms associated with flooding and what kind of coverage you have on your home.

Flood Terms:

  • Flood Watch: Flooding is possible.
  • Flash Flood Watch: Flash flooding is possible. Be prepared to move to higher ground.
  • Flood Warning: Flooding is occurring or will occur soon; if advised to evacuate, do so immediately.
  • Flash Flood Warning: A flash flood is occurring; seek higher ground immediately.

Knowing About Flood Insurance: 

  • Regular homeowners insurance does not cover flood water damages and when purchased from you insurance company is ran through the National Flood Insurance Program. 
  • If there is sewage back up caused by a flood then it would be only be covered by flood insurance. 
  • Upon the purchase of flood insurance there is a 30 Day waiting period before the insurance kicks in, so it is important to plan ahead. 
  • Find out if  you are in a flood plain. If you are not you want to calculate the risk of not having flood insurance. 

Apartment Fire Safety Precautions

12/18/2017 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Apartment Fire Safety Precautions At least nine fire trucks and 50-60 firefighters and emergency personnel responded to this fire at a Huntsville apartment complex.

People living in an apartment building need to think ahead and be prepared in the event of a fire. It is important to know the fire safety features in your building and work together with neighbors to help keep the building as fire-safe as possible.

This is especially important for the Huntsville area since 36% of the city's population are renters.  

Apartment Fire Statistics

  • Between 2010-2015, there were 109,000 apartment fires, causing 400 deaths, 4,170 injuries and $1.3 million in property damage.
  • January was the top month for apartment fires with 10,400. It was also the top month for deaths caused by these fires with 60.
  • Apartment fires tend to happen in the evening hours between 3:00 -10:00 pm (46%).

Source: NFPA's "Home Structure Fires" report

If you live in an apartment or condominium you need to know how to get out quickly if a fire starts. Follow these steps to stay safe.

Building Fire Safety

  • Don’t prop open exit or stairway doors. These are installed to slow the spread of heat and smoke if there is a fire. 
  • Speak to your apartment manager if you see a damaged smoke alarm, fire extinguisher or an emergency light that has burned out.
  • Make sure your apartment has working smoke alarms. Have a smoke alarm inside each sleeping room. Tell your apartment manager if you think there is a problem with one of your smoke alarms.

Be Prepared

  • Create an escape plan. Discuss how you will get outside. Practice your plan.
  • Count the number of doors there are between your apartment and the nearest fire exit. Memorize the number in case you have to find the exit in the dark.  Know where all the exit doors and stairs are on your floor.
  • Learn your building evacuation plan if you have one. Create and practice an escape plan for your own apartment.

Does Mold Grow In Winter?

12/16/2017 (Permalink)

During the winter months we have some extra time indoors to clean and organize our homes. Getting busy with those neglected areas like the attic or basement is crucial to keeping your belongings protected from mold and damage.

Moisture gets trapped in these spaces which creates the perfect recipe for microscopic spores to accumulate and mold to grow. Be sure to check your roof and in corners for leaks, run a fan for ventilation and use a dehumidifier if you need to.

If you find mold or suspect that you may have a mold problem, stay out of the affected area and call SERVPRO of North Madison County.

Remember, every mold damage scenario is different, and requires a unique solution, but the general mold remediation process stays the same.