Recent Posts

Water damage and mold-two sides of the same coin

9/8/2020 (Permalink)

Mold on drywall after water damage Apopka/Wekiva can help with water damage and mold remediation.

We consider water damages and mold to be two sides of the same coin. The mold jobs that we remediate are just water damages that have gone on for too long. The problem usually comes when they find out that the pipe behind their drywall or under a sink behind supplies had actually been leaking for a long time. Behind the drywall is the perfect home for mold…once you introduce that moisture to whatever spores might be behind your walls, the mold springs to life and begins to grow.

You had a small water leak so cleaned it up yourself. Everything looks dried out and problem solved. But now you see mold. If you see visible mold, your best move is to leave it alone. When you disturb mold by trying to remove it, you can inadvertently spread the mold infestation throughout your home. Mold spores are microscopic and when you try to clean them, the mold can release tiny spores which become airborne and can circulate inside your home.

What to Do:

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.

About Our Mold Remediation Services

SERVPRO of Apopka/Wekiva specializes in mold cleanup and restoration, in fact, it’s a cornerstone of our business. Our crews are highly trained restoration professionals that use specialized equipment and techniques to properly remediate your mold problem quickly and safely. We are locally owned and operated.  Contact us at (407) 788-3124.

3 Ways To Prevent Clogged Toilets

8/28/2020 (Permalink)

Photo of toilet paper Thinner paper is much less likely to clog up the pipes

Take The Following Steps To Help Protect Your Building

Keeping your bathrooms clean and functioning properly can be a hassle in commercial buildings. After all, you never know exactly who is attempting to flush what down your precious septic system. While you may not be able to control many clogged toilet scenarios, there are a few steps you can take to help protect your building in Apopka, FL. 

1. Post Signs and Notices
A few simple instructions can go a long way for most visitors. If you prefer that customers dispose of feminine hygiene products in specifically marked wastebaskets, as opposed to flushing them down the toilet, then hang up a sign asking them to do so. Many people do abide by the laws of common courtesy and a simple reminder can help prevent unwanted toilet overflow.

2. Opt for Thinner Toilet Paper
Thicker, more luxurious toilet paper is preferable for home bathrooms, but it might not be the best choice for your commercial ones. Customers who tend to use thicker wads of toilet paper pose a risk to your sewage system. Thinner paper is much less likely to clog up the pipes.

3. Provide Plenty of Trash Cans and Waste Baskets
If there aren't any trash cans available, customers often choose to flush trash down the toilet. They may believe that it's a much more polite alternative than leaving trash on the counters or floors, but your clogged toilet tends to disagree. Offering plenty of places for customers to discard their trash is a simple and effective way to prevent these accidents from happening.
A clogged toilet is an unpleasant sight in any commercial bathroom. Protecting your bathrooms isn't just about preventing septic issues, it's also important to leave a good impression on your customers. The pointers above can certainly help maintain harmony in your commercial bathroom, but there's no real way to prevent disaster entirely. If you do discover septic issues in your building, it's important that you call flood remediation experts as soon as possible.

We Have the Solutions!

8/24/2020 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Apopka/Wekiva has the unique ability to help property owners in a variety of ways. Disasters come in many shapes and sizes. With over three decades of experience we have seen most everything. We cannot say everything because even in the decades of helping our neighbors in the Orlando, FL Area, we still see new things. But here are a few disasters we commonly take care of.

Water Damage – We see water damages from all kinds of sources. Busted pipes, malfunctioning appliances, human accidents or neglect, and ground flooding to name a few common sources. No matter the cause, or the epic story that explains it, we have a solution to return you to normal “Like it never even happened.”

Fire and Smoke Restoration – A fire can be very a huge inconvenience but it is not the end of the world. Many times, you would be surprised at how much of your personal property can be restored. We specialize in cleaning and deodorizing anything from family heirlooms, documents, to the very walls in your home or business.

Mold Remediation – With naturally high levels of humidity in the area of the country we live in mold can be an issue if a water intrusion is not properly taken care of. 

Bio Hazard Clean Up – This area of our work is not enjoyable to talk about but many times it is necessary. We have the training and experience to properly clean up any area they may have the threat of blood born pathogens being present. These cases include trauma and crime scene clean up.

These are by no means the only services we offer. Frankly, whatever mankind or mother nature can throw at a structure, we can more than likely assist in the restoration.

The Water Cleanup Process After a Flood

8/6/2020 (Permalink)

It is crucial to remember that the most important step a property owner can take whenever they have noticed flood water in their business or water in their home is to immediately call in the professionals. Once the call is made, a water cleanup team will be dispatched to the home as soon as possible.

Once on scene, the water cleanup team will immediately start the assessment of the water in the business or water in the home, classifying the water according to its health hazard risk and moving quickly to stanch any existing leaks emanating from pipe breaks or supply line breaks. The team will also carefully examine the area around the original pipe break or supply line break, noting if any water has seeped into unseen or hard-to-reach places.

Once the damage to the flooded home or business has been assessed, the team will begin the water removal process.

Removing standing water from the flooded home or business:

Water will be removed through the use of heavy-duty extracting equipment. This should only take a few minutes, as the equipment used is capable of sucking out thousands of gallons of water per hour.

If you've found water in your home or business call SERVPRO of Apopka / Wekiva today (407) 788-3124

Kitchen Safety Tips to Prevent a Kitchen Fire

7/23/2020 (Permalink)

Photo of burned drywall in kitchen Protect your home from accidental fires.

We all look forward to cooking a wonderful meal with our loved ones, especially recently when we’re spending a lot of time together. You should always practice fire safety in the kitchen so that you can prevent a fire from occurring. Kitchen fires are sadly quite common, and fire damage can be costly; a single fire may cause hundreds if not thousands of dollars in fire damage, and can put those you love at risk. Here are some fire prevention tips from SERVPRO of Apopka-Wekiva for your kitchen:

Keep Your Kitchen Clean

Before you even begin to prep for the meal, ensure that the entire kitchen is clean by clearing all grime from the oven, washing the microwave, and making sure the floors are swept. Also make sure that there’s nothing flammable near your stove or oven. Leftover food particles and grease can start a fire before you know it. Towels and potholders too near a flame can catch fire and spread quickly. A clean, uncluttered kitchen is a safe kitchen.

Protect Yourself While Cooking

When cooking, make sure to wear the right clothing. Don’t wear anything with dangling loose sleeves that could catch fire. Oven mitts are a must when you bring things out of the stove, too. Hot pots, pans, and utensils can catch other items on fire, so prepare a place to put them after you bring them out. Clear an area for hot items, and make sure the surface is clean and dry. 

Be Careful with Children in the Kitchen

Mealtime brings the kids into the kitchen, and they will enjoy help you by performing simple tasks, such as helping to get things out of the fridge. You can use this time to teach them fire safety and to ensure that they know to keep away from stoves and any other place where there might be live flames. Knowledge is one of the best fire prevention tools out there. Need more fire safety tips for kids?  Here’s a great list to share!

Properly Store Kitchen Items and Cleaners

One of the best ways to help prevent fires in your kitchen is to store all chemicals like solvents away from any heat source. Many people keep cleaning supplies under the sink which is fine (protected from little ones, of course). Or you can keep cleaning fluids on shelving that is protected far away from the stove and range, and make sure that any pots you are using have all handles away from everyone in the kitchen. Knocking a burning pot or pan onto the floor or a person can cause serious injuries and start a fire quickly. 

Kitchen fires can happen fast, even when you’re using all the right precautions. If you experience a kitchen fire, contact SERVPRO of Apopka-Wekiva to help restore your kitchen back to normal. We’re here 24/7 to serve you! Call us at (407) 788-3124.

5 Common Causes of Solar Panel Damage

7/20/2020 (Permalink)

Photo of crack solar panel Solar panel damaged in Apopka, FL

More and more homes in Apopka, FL, are installing solar panels. They may require extra expense upfront, but in the long run, they're a sustainable and cost-efficient energy alternative. If you're thinking about investing in solar power, you may be concerned about the potential for panel damage. Here are five of its most common causes.

1. Extreme Weather

Since solar-powered panels need exposure to the sun to work, they're also regularly subjected to a variety of other elements, including the weather. Snow, rain, and hail all have the potential to damage panels, as well as other parts of your home, requiring the aid of an experienced storm damage restoration company. Fortunately, it usually takes an excessive amount of snow, rain, hail or wind to actually cause harm. Panels and their racking are carefully designed to hold up against most of what Mother Nature throws their way.

2. Fire

Faulty wiring can cause panel and roof damage if left unaddressed. To protect your solar panels, make sure their wiring is fenced in or otherwise contained and that children or pets are unable to access it.

3. Tree Branches

Falling tree limbs and branches have the potential to cause panel damage. For this reason, it's important for solar panel owners to keep nearby trees trimmed and well-maintained.

4. Overheating

The job of a solar panel may be to soak up the sun's rays, but that doesn't mean it's immune to overheating. Panels that regularly get too hot may require the installation of fans or another type of ventilation system to ensure that things run smoothly.

5. Lightning

Lightning is a solar panel's nemesis. If one of your panels gets zapped by a lightning strike, it's likely done for. Fortunately, solar panel owners have a variety of lightning protection systems to choose from, including grounding schemes and surge protection devices.
Solar panels are built to withstand the elements, but they're not immune to them. By keeping these five common causes of damage in mind, owners can prepare for potential panel damage and protect their eco-friendly investment for years to common.

Be Prepared In Case You Ever Have A Fire

7/2/2020 (Permalink)

Photo of Fire Extinguisher A properly selected fire extinguisher can stop a fire become it becomes serious or deadly.

The hours, days and weeks following a fire or water damage in your home or business can be simply overwhelming. having that we live in the "sunshine state" doesn't make things any better especially for the Orlando, Altamonte, and Ocoee areas. Surrounded by possessions that are soot-covered, flame-damaged or wet, it’s easy to lose sight of the big picture: As long as everyone got out safely everything else is just stuff. But once the smoke clears or the water recedes, you will need to deal with that stuff, and the sooner the better.

From the beginning make sure that you are organized, amidst the chaos of your scorched surroundings.

Take notes on every conversation and online correspondence with your insurance company and restoration professionals, because in any stressful situation, miscommunication can happen. Save all receipts and original documents; only give photocopies upon request.

Your first call should be to your insurance agent/carrier. Not only is it required that you file your claim as soon as possible, it is also in your best interest. The sooner you get the process started, the sooner an insurance adjustor will arrive at your door to begin assessing damage.

A reputable cleaning and restoration team should be next on your call list like SERVPRO of Apopka/Wekiva. If you can find one that also specializes in professional repair services, you’ll save yourself time, money and headaches. Depending upon the extent of damage, your property will may first need to be secured (boarded up, for example), and a high quality restoration team with carpentry skills can perform that service for you.

Your restoration team should work with your insurance company to initiate a fire damage recovery plan that includes the complete restoration of your structure. Again, if your team is truly “full service,” the construction side will assess the structural damages while the cleaning and restoration specialists will work closely with you and your adjustor to determine which of your possessions can be cleaned…and which need to be inventoried for replacement. Often these services can be provided on site, but in the event that your contents have to be removed, make sure your team also offers the capability to electronically inventory, package, transport and store your belongings in a safe, climate controlled facility.

Now that you know the initial steps of the fire damage recovery process, here are a few tips on what NOT to do before the pros arrive:

·         Do not wipe or attempt to wash fire residue from walls, ceilings, or other absorbent surfaces

·         Do not use carpeting or upholstered furniture impacted by heavy smoke residues or debris

·         Do not use food items, canned goods or medications exposed to heat

·         Do not turn on computers, televisions, stereos or electrical appliances until they have been professionally cleaned and checked

With preparation, resources and trusted professionals in place—plus a healthy dose of patience and perspective, after the fact—you and your family or co-workers will make it through the process of fire damage recovery.

Why Should You Hire a Professional for your Fire Clean Up?

7/2/2020 (Permalink)

Photo of Burned Home After the Fire Fighters leave you need professionals to clean up and rebuild. SERVPRO of Apopka-Wekiva is here to help.

It can be confusing trying to deal with the damages from a fire at your home or business. The IICRC has provided the following helpful information on handling this. Due to the intricate measures needed to properly clean up after a fire loss, having a trained team of professionals will help alleviate some of the stress. Give us a call and we will send someone out to help.

When the firefighters leave, it may seem like the danger has passed and the home is safe from further destruction, but without professionals to help clean the smoke damage, the building will never return to normal. While the principles behind fire restoration are fairly simple, it requires a lot of experience and manpower to perform adequately, and this means that it shouldn’t be attempted by a homeowner on his or her own.

While fire is always the immediate danger, once it is gone, what it leaves behind will continue to affect the house
. Ash and smoke, if left unhindered, will cause extensive corrosion, etching and discoloration, not to mention lingering powerful odors. Professionals that clean fire and smoke damage can stop this before it becomes a major problem, assuming they are contacted soon enough. There are many companies out there that advertise their ability to restore areas affected by fire, but only those with proper training and certification should be considered. The Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) is the main oversight agency in this industry. The IICRC requires its registrants to take extensive coursework before earning their certification. This is a symbol of excellence, and those that uphold the standards that have been set can be contacted through the IICRC.

These professionals can clean smoke damage and restore items affected by a fire, but they must be brought to the site as soon as possible to halt the ongoing issues that ash residue can cause. The first thing that ash does to the home is discolor most surfaces. Anything that is made of plastic or was close to the fire will start discoloring within minutes, and within several hours, fiberglass and finishes on appliances will begin to yellow. Metals may also tarnish. After a few days pass, the ash will cause walls to discolor permanently, along with clothing and upholstery. Wood and vinyl will need to be refinished or replaced, and metal will start corroding.

If a professional isn’t hired to clean smoke and fire damage, the costs for restoration will skyrocket after a few weeks
. Metals may need to be replaced, carpet will permanently discolor and glass may be severely etched, which will necessitate replacement. It will also become apparent that the odors caused by the disaster may still be present and intense enough to be distracting. Because ash is acidic, the longer it takes to hire experts, the more destruction it will cause.

The first thing a trained, certified, professional company will do when on site is to identify all affected materials and the source of any odors. The only way to properly clean smoke and fire damage is to be extremely thorough. Ash residue is easily disturbed and can spread through the building with ease, causing nearly everything to need restoration. The experts will identify what can and cannot be salvaged, and will remove any built-up ash residue that is coating surfaces. Over time, ash builds up in layers, and may eventually form into a lacquer-like consistency. Once this is done, the restorers will locate the source of the odor, and treat it with specialized detergents that are formulated for neutralizing this kind of odor. Once materials are treated, they may be sealed off to prevent any further odor from permeating the air in the future.

This entire process is very detailed, and hiring a professional that can be trusted to do the job right is imperative
.

How To Prepare Your Orlando Building for Storm Damage

6/15/2020 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Do you have storm damage? Call SERVPRO of Apopka / Wekiva Today?

As a property manager in Orlando, FL, you know how important it is to maintain the building and grounds to create a safe, comfortable environment for your tenants. Not only do you want to keep the property looking nice, but you need to think about issues such as storm preparedness. If you are not ready to withstand the effects of Mother Nature, you should act quickly to put the appropriate safeguards in place.

Assess and Inspect

If you're behind in your storm preparedness, don't panic and start assembling a bunch of supplies without doing some planning first. You should start by looking over the property and identifying potential areas of concern. Here are a few ideas on how to do this:

  • Inspect the room and make sure there are no weak spots, gaps or issues that might increase the chances of leaks.
  • Make sure there are clearly marked exit signs and instructions on how to safely evacuate the building in case of an emergency.
  • Evaluate the windows and consider purchasing shatter-proof ones.

Bolster the Windows and Doors

In a storm with high winds, these two areas of entry could be significant safety hazards. Consider purchasing items such as roll-up shutters or storm panels to place over the doors and windows when storms hit. Every property management emergency plan should have a way to protect tenants from damage that could occur from breaking glass.

Have Sandbags Ready

If you live in an area where heavy rains are common, flooding can always be a risk. The same goes for property owners whose buildings are near waterways. Purchase a set of sandbags that you could fill and place around doors, windows and the foundation when necessary.


Practice Evacuating

Work with your tenants on developing an emergency exit plan. At least once a year, evaluate this plan. Practice evacuations are critical as well. This plan should also include knowing which emergency cleanup company to call when disasters strike.


Storm preparedness can give you peace of mind even during an emergency such as a flood or severe storm. Make sure you're ready at a moment's notice.

Partial Fire Loss Can Leave Lingering Damage

6/9/2020 (Permalink)

Fire loss in a warehouse in Apopka, FL Fire loss in a warehouse in Apopka, FL

Partial Fire Loss Can Leave Lingering Damage

If a fire breaks out in your Apopka, FL, business, the aftermath can be overwhelming. Even if there is only a partial fire loss, the lingering effects of the fire and smoke damage can create long-term issues.

Seek Hidden Damage
Whether small or big, smoke, soot, and flames can quickly become absorbed into the materials of a building, even in areas not affected by the fire. If a fire breaks out in a neighboring establishment, its residual impact may also affect your building. Calling a fire restoration specialist is the best bet to ensure the building is properly cleaned and inspected. During the inspection, they will check areas of the structure that may be overlooked, including:

HVAC System – Soot can easily begin to circulate through the vents. If not properly cleaned, it creates a long-term odor and affects air quality.
Attics – As smoke rises, any levels above the fire will be affected. Not addressing soot buildup can reduce air quality.
Electric and Plumbing – The accumulation of soot can also involve plumbing and electrical systems. The heat from a fire can impact pipes, potentially resulting in a pipe burst. If the fire was due to an electrical issue, it might be best to contact an electrician to update the wiring.
Mold – If a sprinkler system was set off or water hoses were used to put out a fire, it has the potential to create the right environment for mold. As the water absorbs into porous materials, mold can quickly grow and spread.

Address the Issue
Fire loss can feel overwhelming. Once the smoke settles, filing a claim as quickly as possible is key to getting your business back up and running. For partial losses, the process may be a little different. It is important to document all damaged items. This will help the process go more smoothly and may help the restoration experts better salvage some of the losses.
While fire loss can seem devastating, help is only a phone call away. The right professional will work to reduce losses and make the proper repairs to get your business back to normal.