Recent Water Damage Posts

Summer Awareness in Newton Wellesley

6/6/2021 (Permalink)

Water with White text overlay box Did you know that June is the month for summer awareness? It seems like an easy no brainer idea. However, there is a lot to consider.

Did you know that June is the month for summer awareness? It seems like an easy no brainer idea. However, there is a lot to consider. 

The National Weather Service (NWS) recognizes many safety hazards during the summertime including air quality, floods, heat, hurricanes, lightning, rip currents, tornadoes, and wildfires. Here are a few summer safety storm warning tips: 

Watch the Clouds: A severe storm with the potential of developing deadly weather will often look very dark or even have a green tint.

Pay Attention to the Temperature: For severe storms and tornadoes to form, a mixture of warm, moist air at low levels has to collide with dry cold air above. 

Sudden Wind Changes: Be prepared if it suddenly gets very windy or if there is an abrupt calm during or right after a thunderstorm. 

Precipitation Changes: Be aware of hail or heavy rain followed by either calm or a fast, intense wind shift. 

Listen Intently: If you hear a loud roar that is similar to a freight train, take shelter right away; a tornado has more than likely spawned.

Check the Radar: You don’t have to be a meteorologist to interpret the radar. When observing storms on the radar, look for large lines of red. 

SERVPRO of Newton Wellesley is available 24/7 including holidays and weekends to assist you and get your home back to “Like it never even happened.” 

Wet Carpets - Hidden Dangers

5/21/2021 (Permalink)

Excessive water spilled or leaking onto your carpet requires quick attention. It is not always as simple as letting the carpet dry on its own, even if the water is clean. Especially during the humid summer months, effectively extracting water may be more difficult in your Wellesley, MA commercial or residential property.

Water Removal first requires detection of and measurement  moisture levels. SERVPRO of Newton/Wellesley technicians use moisture sensors with probes to penetrate through carpet and padding, reaching to the floor underneath to determine the presence of water. Moisture meters may also be necessary to determine the amount of moisture present. 

Water Extraction 

  • Water extraction is key. The more passes made with  extraction equipment, the better as it expedites the drying process.
  • Self-propelled extraction equipment can be used throughout the impacted areas. The technician stands on them vacuuming up as much water as possible. Their body weight improves suction.
  • The use of stationary extraction equipment is monitored regularly. The equipment is moved periodically to less dry areas, ensuring the best results.  
  • Air movement, ventilation, and dehumidification are all critical in effectively drying the carpet to prohibit mold colonies from forming.
  • Air movers move warm, dry air over the impacted carpet while dehumidifiers pull moisture from the air.

Removing soaked carpet may be necessary, depending on the severity of the damage; however, our Disaster Remediation Teams have the tools and techniques to eliminate the need of removing water damaged carpeting in most cases. 

Call the experts at SERVPRO of Newton/Wellesley - (617) 332-9000. We make it, "Like it never even happened." 

Prepare for Flooding Season in Newton Wellesley, MA

4/26/2021 (Permalink)

Water flood with white box overlay If you find yourself in need of water damage to your home or business, give SERVPRO Newton Wellesley, MA a call at (617) 332-9000

Flooding a topic that can be hard to prepare for. However, it is one of the most important topics that should not be overlooked. Flooding is a common hazard in Massachusetts. Some floods develop slowly. Flash floods can occur within minutes or hours after a storm it is best to not ignore flooding warnings.

There are so many different terms when it comes to flooding for you to be aware of. 

  • Flooding, flash flooding:  Pay attention to changing flood conditions. You will want to be prepared to move to higher ground if needed.
  • Flood Warning: This means that flooding is happening or maybe close by. You will want to avoid low-lying areas. 
  • Flash Flood Warning: A flash flood is occurring or might be happening soon. You should seek higher ground immediately.

There are plenty of safety tips you should take if flooding is happening in your area so you can be safe and prepared. 

If you find yourself in need of water damage to your home or business, give SERVPRO Newton Wellesley, MA a call at (617) 332-9000, we respond faster to any size disaster. 

What To Do After A Flood

4/6/2021 (Permalink)

When a thunder storm hits Wellesley, MA it is not uncommon, especially this time of the year, for a flash flood to occur. As the basement of your home or the showroom of your dealership fills with water it is understandable to think extraction first. Really, the first priority should always be safety. Regardless if you are a residential or commercial property owner, here are some steps to take to ensure the health and safety of you, your family and your customers.

Reduce Additional Risks

Electricity can cause additional dangers when your property floods. Even if the power has gone out, if there’s standing water, you might be at risk for electrocution or fire once the power is restored. If you can safely reach the fuse box and turn off the main power line, then do so. If not, call an electrician for help. They may need to disconnect your power externally. It may also be necessary call the gas and sewer companies as well to shut off those lines to prevent more damage. 

Avoid Contact With The Water

Even if the floodwaters appear clean, they could be contaminated with bacteria, sewage, or household chemicals that can be harmful to your health. If you must enter the damaged area, use proper protective gear, including boots, hip waders, gloves, and masks. Take care when handling any items that have come in contact with the water, and throw away all food that got wet. 

Begin Cleanup & Mitigation

When storms damage your commercial or residential property the best and safest course of action is to call water remediation experts. Heavy rains can cause major damage to Massachusetts properties. If yours suffers water damage from a storm, call the experts of SERVPRO of Newton/Wellesley at (617) 332-9000. Our one-stop, remediation to rebuild shop is ready to respond 24 hours a day, every day of the year, even holidays! We will make it, "Like it never even happened."

Removing All Water Damage

3/16/2021 (Permalink)

The Disaster Remediation Teams at SERVPRO of Newton/Wellesley are highly trained technicians who can troubleshoot and identify hidden water damage issues. No matter what type of water damage, remediation by untrained professionals, more often than not, is left incomplete. Although each situation is unique in terms of determining the outcome, there can easily arise oversight of minor issues such as moisture movement can influence the experience negatively.  When SERVPRO of Newton/Wellesley responds to an incident at your Newton, MA commercial or residential property our responsibility is to ensure that the job is done correctly.

Moisture Movement Is Hard To Detect

Moisture movement can complicate water removal from any property. Sophisticated removal procedures or minimally evasive demolition is required to reach hidden areas of water and moisture. Such steps lead to higher costs or lengthen restoration periods. There are four main methods of moisture movement;

  1. Liquid flow
  2. Capillary suction
  3. Air movement
  4. Vapor diffusion

Apart from liquid flow, which you can readily see, the other processes are hard to notice without the use of advanced techniques or tools. As the moisture moves, it transfers damage from the areas initially affected. It also causes further deterioration of materials and if left unchecked, the result could be secondary damage the can range from mold infestation to structural damage.

When you first suspect water damage to your commercial or residential property, immediate resolution will save you time and money. The Disaster Remediation Teams at SERVPRO of Newton/Wellesley have a fast and thorough response that will help you identify the cause of your water loss. Call us at (617) 332-9000!  We will make it, "Like it never even happened."

Water Remediation Experts

3/16/2021 (Permalink)

When water damage occurs in your Wellesley, MA commercial or residential property, calling in the professionals is the smart choice. Our Disaster Remediation Teams are able to quickly fix and correct any water damage.  Commercial and residential property owners can rest assured, when SERVPRO of Newton/Wellesley is on the job, the result will exceed expectations!

Why Is Professional Help Necessary

SERVPRO of Newton/Wellesley uses commercial-grade equipment in all of our water loss jobs. We have more resources and professional grade options than anything available at a home improvement or renovation shop. Our certified technicians also follow a careful process that ensures we do not miss anything and provide a safe environment once again.

  1. Inspection and Assessment – Technicians and Project Managers examine the property to make certain they understand the damage extent and have the equipment needed for restoration.
  2. Water Removal & Extraction – We use pumps and smaller vacuum units to draw out the majority of the water.
  3. Drying the Structure – Technicians use air movers and dehumidifiers to lower humidity and draw moisture out of structural property like wall framing and drywall.
  4. Cleaning and Sanitizing – Specialists clean off any debris that may have been brought up by the water and deodorize restorable items.

Stopping Moisture Movement 

Although understanding that moisture movement is happening is useful, stopping the process is not that easy. Our technicians use several approaches, including:

  • Expediting water extraction to limit the liquid flow
  • Running dehumidifiers to manage humidity, limiting moisture spread through air movement
  • Making flood cuts or removing wet materials to curb capillary suction

We have different types of water removal equipment, which ease removal under different circumstances. For example, submersible pumps are perfect when the water pools deeper than 2 inches, while portable units help ease access to different sections of the property.

When you first suspect water damage to your commercial or residential property,  calling in professional help will minimize cost and the risk of secondary damage. The Disaster Remediation Teams at SERVPRO of Newton/Wellesley are hear to help. Call us at (617) 332-9000!  We will make it, "Like it never even happened."

Large Water Loss Experts

2/4/2021 (Permalink)

Typically New England Springtime is synonymous with flooding, not Fall. When water begins spreading across floors or filling basements, it is usually from a failed water heater shut-off valve or a split line on a washing machine. But as all residents of the Commonwealth know, our unpredictable weather can cause trouble without warning.

No matter where it came from, water removal for Hopkinton, Ma commercial and residential properties needs to be started, and finished, as soon as possible. It is why SERVPRO of Framingham technicians are on call 24 hours a day, every day of the year, including holidays! Our Water Damage Restoration Technicians can begin work within minutes after receiving a call.

If the water level is over two inches, each team of Restoration Technicians starts removal with a commercial grade, submersible pump. All water we remove goes directly in a drain, and not across the backyard to cause a problem for neighbors or the residents one street over. If possible, technicians direct it into sewer access if one is available.

For water levels under two inches, our teams utilize extraction wands and other, smaller devices. Each one has three components, but technicians start by using only the pump option to draw water off of floors. Once they begin drawing water out of carpets, upholstery, and other items, they use the other two, a heater and vacuum to carefully draw water out of carpets and from between floorboards.

That is particularly important for carpets. After they become soaked, the glue holding the layers together weakens significantly, and delamination, or separation of the layers, can occur. Our certified technicians know to carefully monitor all three components to prevent tearing carpets apart, as well as overheating the already damaged wood floorboards, cracking and splintering them. They will then lift the carpets, remove the carpet pad, and dry the floor using air movers and fans to force warm air over and under the carpet while also drawing out the damp air and sending it outside the nearest window or another exit. Once completed, they insert a new pad and then stretch the carpet back in place.

If you experience a sewage backup the first step, if it is safe to do so, is to turn off the Water Main. Then call the water remediation experts of SERVPRO of Newton/Wellesley to remediate the water damage. and to determine the cause of the burst pipe at (617) 332-9000. We will make it, "Like it never even happened."

Why Hire Water Remediation Professionals

6/26/2020 (Permalink)

The Disaster Remediation Teams at SERVPRO of Newton Wellesley are certified water restoration experts and use tools and techniques scientifically proven to help. Knowing who is responsible for what aspect of restoration and recovery in your home after a loss incident can be stressful and overwhelming. Our technicians can make it easy by offering a comprehensive approach encompassing nearly every phase of restoration and later build back necessary.

Even basics like water cleanup for Hopkinton, MA commercial and residential properties can indicate different tasks that professionals like ours need to complete. We can work with your insurance provider to offer you a fast and reliable service that follows the boundaries of your coverage and limits any out-of-pocket expenses for you.

Your property needs to get thoroughly dried after a loss incident, and this can have a direct effect on the speed and final product of cleaning processes. We have professional grade, state-of-the-art equipment that can begin drying out damaged areas of your house quickly. With units like high-velocity air movers and desiccant dehumidifiers, we can provide customers with effective drying solutions that can return their property to its original condition sooner than expected.

Many property owners consider cutting out the middleman when it comes to restoring their houses, but there are potential pitfalls to this approach. Not only can DIY cleanup be ineffective when the full spectrum of moisture damage does not get addressed, but without the appropriate potent products and technologies for cleaning, your property might not only look like it used to, but also, may not be properly remediated, increasing the possibility of mold growth. We offer:

  • Professional and efficient service
  • EPA approved, commercial grade cleaning products
  • Thorough results

Cleaning up after a water loss can be a necessary step in making disasters “Like it never even happened.” Call the experts at SERVPRO of Newton Wellesley today, (617) 332-9000!

The Need For Speed

5/27/2020 (Permalink)

Often in New England you will hear someone say, “Can’t control Mother Nature.” While that may be true it is possible to help her. If your Needham, MA commercial or residential property suffers water damage the drying process can be expedited. The amount of damage your property suffers is directly related to the speed in which the structure and its contents are properly dried. 

But what if you could speed up the process of drying when your home or business suffers an unfortunate event such as water damage from putting out a fire or burst water pipe. Did you know there is an actual science behind the process of drying? Before reaching for the towels, a mop, or perhaps a fan ask yourself, what do I know about Psychometrics?

Psychometrics is essential to restoring a water damaged structure to its preloss condition. The Disaster Remediation Teams at SERVPRO of Newton/Wellesley are trained in this science of drying and follow strict industry approved standards to help lower the chances of secondary damages. We will:

  • Inspect the building to detect every component that is wet to help prevent secondary damage from happening.
  • Measure how much moisture is in wet materials and monitor whether the materials are drying properly.
  • Speed up Mother Nature by using professional drying equipment.

A wet building can often dry naturally because the environment always seeks equilibrium. When materials are wet, moisture will naturally move to drier air at the surface of the material, but only if the air is drier. The issue, nature often takes too long resulting in secondary damage to the structure of your property and its contents. Out certified technicians have the training and equipment to dry tough to reach places, hardwood floors, inside walls, and so much more. Using state of the art monitoring equipment and a proven scientific process they will expedite the drying process and mitigate the risk of secondary (mold) damage.

When your commercial or residential property suffers fire damage call SERVPRO of Newton/Wellesley at (617) 332-9000. We will make it, "Like it never even happened."

Types Of Water Damage

4/7/2020 (Permalink)

Not all water damage is the same. There are three possible categories which identifies the cleanliness of the water that has caused the damage to your Needham, MA residential or commercial property. The three categories are as follows:

Category 1 Clean

Category 2 Gray Water

Category 3 Black Water

Category 1—Clean Water

A building damaged by clean water or treated water is the least contaminated type of water damage. By definition, clean water is “clean” because it likely poses no substantial risk to human health. The source of clean water normally does not contain microbes in concentration or kind that would pose substantial health threats. For clean water to remain in the “clean” category, it must not come into contact with structure or materials that would result in harmful microbial contamination. Given enough time, clean water damages can produce reservoirs of microbes. The longer clean water is present in a structure, the more likely conditions will develop where microbes (such as bacteria and fungi) grow rapidly and attack human health. High humidity increases the concentrations of bacteria and fungi in the air. Warm temperatures allow microbe colonies to expand.

Category 2—Gray Water

Gray water contains a significant level of contamination that could potentially threaten human health or cause discomfort. Clean water damages can develop higher levels of contamination and become gray water damages if not removed promptly. Over time, water becomes more contaminated with biological contamination, and the danger to human health increases. Spores from fungi and bacteria can be inhaled, causing allergies or disease. Water is also classified as gray water when contaminated with chemicals or other types of matter.

Category 3—Black Water

Black water is the most contaminated type of water damage and, therefore, the most threatening to human health. Contaminants include not only human waste products, but also dangerous chemicals. Black water situations always contain pathogens, which are disease-causing agents, such as bacteria, fungi, viruses, and even parasites. Being exposed to microbes from black water can result in infectious diseases, allergies, and toxic poisoning. Viruses can grow and multiply only in living cells. Sewage contains hundreds of viruses that can be transmitted to humans by hands contacting the mouth, by inhaling airborne viruses, and by ingesting contaminated foods and liquids. Once infected, humans can suffer diarrhea, infections of the respiratory tract, eyes, stomach or intestines. Sewage contains the hepatitus A virus that causes inflammation of the liver. Parasites are organisms living on or in another organism. Sewage may contain parasites such as the tapeworm that lives in human intestines. The helminth worm, one of various parasites in sewage, can cause intestinal disease in humans. Bacteria found in sewage are extremely virulent and able to overcome our bodies’ defenses. Such bacteria as Salmonella and E. coli release poisonous toxins as their cells die and cause health problems like diarrhea and food poisoning. Unprotected restoration professionals and building residents are at risk since bacteria are dispersed into the air when sewage-contaminated materials, particularly carpet, are extracted. 

When your Needham, MA residential or commercial property suffers water damage call the experts at SERVPRO of Newton / Wellesley. We will make it "Like it never even happened."

Commercial Water Remediation

3/24/2020 (Permalink)

The sprinkler system burst in one of the hotel rooms at this Newton, MA hotel, causing many rooms on the main floor affected. Water also seeped down through the floor destroying the drop ceiling tiles. After the fire department shut off the sprinkler system the facilities manager called the water remediation experts at SERVPRO of Newton / Wellesley. Our Disaster Remediation team was onsite with in an hour of receiving the call. Our water remediation experts immediately got to work extracting the standing water and setting drying equipment to mitigate secondary water damage.

A quick response to water damage is the most important course of action. The Disaster Remediation team at SERVPRO of Newton / Wellesley is on call 24-hours a day, every day of the year, even holidays to help you in your time of need. 

When your commercial property suffers a large loss from water damage call SERVPRO of Newton / Wellesley at (617) 332-9000. We will make it "Like it never even happened."

Hidden Water Danger

3/24/2020 (Permalink)

Drying Exterior Walls

Flooding after a storm can wreak havoc in many Chestnut Hill, MA streets and homes. Basements may be flooded, either through water backing up through basement drains or even through porous or cracked foundation walls. It is imperative, especially in homes with finished basements, to remove water from walls in addition to any moisture that may be present inside the basement.

Drying Exterior Walls After a Flood

After the floods have receded, there can still be high humidity levels in basements, even those that did not have an excessive amount of water inside the basement. Initial cleanup includes removing flood-damaged contents and drying the area. Our certified technicians use water extractors for carpeted floors, air movers, and dehumidifiers. The type of water (clean versus sewage) and the severity of the water damage will determine if the contents are salvageable or not.

Extracting standing water and removing damages contents is only the beginning. The walls of your basement may present additional challenges. Flood cuts may be required above the water line to remove flood damaged drywall and expose pockets containing water inside the wall. Homes with cinderblock construction may also contain water inside the cinderblock. SERVPRO of Newton / Wellesley will check all exterior walls using moisture sensors. If there are high moisture levels, holes can be drilled at the bottom of the wall to drain water from the interior of the cinderblock wall. We may drill a hole at the top as well to enable airflow and force air into the wall to remove all of the moisture.

Failure to remove this water may be the source of high humidity levels which will increase the risk of mold infestation in your home.

If your Chestnut Hill, MA home has suffered water damage call SERVPRO of Newton / Wellesley at (617) 332 - 9000. We will make it "Like it never even happened."

Keep Water Out Of Your Home

2/5/2020 (Permalink)

Water damage is one of the most common and costly disasters affecting American residences, accounting for billions of dollars in losses to homeowners and renters each year. Here are some simple steps you can take right now (okay, this weekend!) that will go a long way toward preventing water damage to your Newton, MA home.

  • Caulk and seal windows to guard against water seepage
  • Inspect your roof for missing, damaged and aging shingles
  • Check downspouts. Remove accumulated debris and position downspouts to direct water away from the house
  • Check sprinklers and irrigation systems. Be sure they are not damaging the walls and foundations of the house
  • In winter, turn off and drain outside faucets to protect against frozen pipes
  • Install gutter guards to prevent clogging so that water flows easily from the roof

When you have suffered a water or other disaster at your home or business, call SERVPRO of Newton Wellesly today at 617-332-9000

How To Test Your Sump Pump

6/25/2019 (Permalink)

It is crucial to own a sump pump to prevent ground water from getting into the basement or even a crawl space. Excess water can quickly gather and seep into the foundation, especially during a heavy rainstorm. A sump pump moves the ground water out away from your home. However, if your pump should stop working, water could get into your basement and foundation walls, causing mold and mildew, or worse a flood!

Make sure you test your sump pump before a rainstorm quickly sneaks up on you. There are two simple and easy steps.

First, unplug the pump and then plug it in again. If you look at the outlet where your sump pump is plugged in, you should see two separate plugs. Unplug both of them, and then plug in just the one for the pump. If the pump doesn’t turn on immediately, your pump needs to be repaired or replaced, so you should call a licensed plumber. If the pump worked properly, please remember to reconnect the other plug!

The second way to test your sump pump is by running water through it. You can manually add just enough water to raise the float until the pump kicks on. When the pump begins to run, great! But watch to make sure the water actually gets pumped out of the hole.

Another way to manually get it to kick on is by lifting the float arm up and see if the pump turns on. This won’t determine if water will actually be pumped out, however. If you test the pump without water, don’t let it run more than a few seconds. Otherwise, you risk damaging the pump motor!

We see flooded basements all to often as a result of a failed sump pump. Practice these suggestions and you will be saving yourself from a lot time, heartache and money!

When Your Commercial Property Experiences a Flood

5/23/2019 (Permalink)

As a business owner, you must protect your property. You likely have insurance that covers you in case of theft, fire or other serious property damage, but not all policies cover flood damage. Even if you don't live in an area prone to flooding, one burst pipe is all it takes to create a big problem.  

Have Digital Backups of Any Paper Files

No matter how well you prepare, your paper files are at risk if storm damage is a possibility. If you don't already have digital copies of your important paperwork, now is the time to create these backups. Doing so can save you days' worth of headaches during the restoration process.

- Property deeds
- Insurance policies
- Inventory lists
- Employee information
- Company handbooks and policies
- Client or customer information

Create Sandbags to Protect Your Building

Placing sandbags at the doors and windows can protect your property from up to two feet of storm water. After filling each bag with sand, fold the top over and place the bag with the folded top down. Create one layer at a time, and limit their placement to three layers, unless you intend to create a pyramid or are leaning the bags against doors and windows. Remember, sandbags are a temporary solution and aren't likely to protect the building from larger floods.

Move What You Can

Consider your furniture and whether you have higher ground in your building. If you have a second story, move as much furniture and equipment to the higher floor as possible. If you have enough notice and a second property that is on higher ground, consider moving furniture and equipment to a new building entirely.

While you aren't likely to get away from flooding with no damage at all, following these steps will help you protect much of your property. Less time spent cleaning up means more time getting back into the swing of doing business.

Don't Ignore Water Stains!

4/5/2019 (Permalink)

You look up and see the dreaded water stain on the ceiling of your home in Metro West Boston and you instinctively know this is not good.When you cannot identify the possible water source above the stain, you could have a leaky pipe. It is not uncommon for water to run along piping or rafters before dripping onto your ceiling.

A leaky pipe may haveexisted for quiet some time itbeforebecomesapparent to you. And sadly, there could be a good deal of water damage to your home that you cannot see yet. It is something you want to handle right away before EVEN more damage is done. A professional remediation company such as SERVPRO of Newton/Wellesley can help you get everything cleaned up. Our technicians are trained and have the right equipment for the job.

In a situation like this, we find the areas of your structure that are wet and define precisely how wet they are compared to regular moisture levels. We use various devices to help us track moisture within your home. Our goal for drying is to return materials affected to their normal moisture content levels. These tools are used to find the actual moisture content of different materials and help us figure out if your structure is dry.

SERVPRO of Newton/Wellesley technicians also use thermo-hygrometers which measure both relative humidity and temperature. Some even do more, like measure dew point. We allow the thermos-hygrometer to adapt to air conditions in the room before we take a reading. We then use these readings in conjunction with a psychrometric calculator or chart. We do so to determine the specific humidity.

Readings for four areas are compared including the unaffected areas, the areas affected by moisture, outside the home, and the exhaust being processed through the dehumidifier into the area affected to make sure dehumidification is contributing to a drying process that is effective.

Stop Water Damage Before it Even Happens

3/22/2019 (Permalink)

 Think first before you plant:

   Some plants and trees, like weeping willows, have pretty invasive roots. If you’re not careful, they’ll grow right into your sprinkler system, drainage field, pipes, and septic tanks. Plan before you plant to keep roots away from any water lines.

  Roof Gutters, Roof Gutters, Roof Gutters:

   You know it’s on your to-do list anyway, so if you can, take a safe climb up to your roof next Sunday and check out your gutters. If you’re seeing lots of leaves, birds’ nests, sticks, and whatnot up there, your gutters may not be doing the job you hired them for. And on a rainy day, a clogged gutter can send water spilling into your home’s foundation, through the roof, or down to your basement. That could cause some serious water damage! So next time you’re doing some seasonal cleaning, make sure those gutters are clean. And if your gutters are too high, be safe and get a professional to check them.

    Keep a watchful eye on your water bill:

With so many water pipes hidden behind walls and in the floors in your house, you might not know there’s a leak until the damage is done. That’s why it’s a good idea to keep a close eye on your monthly water bill. If you see it starting to creep up, or get one that’s uncommonly high, it’s a pretty good sign that you may have a leak somewhere.

    Use a drain snake instead of unclogging chemicals

No matter how crazy clean you are, from your shower to your kitchen sink, clogs are going to happen. And chances are at some point in your life you’ve used one of those powerful chemical drain cleaners to get things moving again. But as convenient as they may be, most folks don’t realize those caustic chemicals are also eating away at their pipes (and they might not be too good for you either). If you rely on them a lot, you could be setting yourself up for leaks. That’s why owning a drain snake is a good solution to clear away clogs. They’re pretty inexpensive, you can get them at your local hardware store, and they can cut through most any clog you’ll have without damaging pipes or making your eyes red and teary.

    Never pour grease down your sink:

You’ve probably heard this before, but you should definitely avoid pouring grease down your kitchen sink. It doesn’t matter if you flush it with hot or cold water. It can still congeal and cling to your pipes, and could still cause some serious damage and blockage.

Gross! Walking On A Wet Carpet

3/22/2019 (Permalink)

The toilet overflows, a pipe bursts, a washer overflows or you walk intoyourbasement completely flooded by rainwater. Gross! Water can seep into almost every material and cause irreversible damage. When water saturates your carpet or walls, you will need to make decisions and make them quickly! Do not waste time contemplating how to clean up the water, each hour counts when water is involved. The longer water sits in porous material, like carpet or drywall, the sooner bacteria and microbial growth begins to grow.

One of the prime locations for microbial growth to spread is in a humid room with sopping wet carpet and walls. What do you do? Grab a shop vac and suck it up? Grab a slew of towels and cover the floor while dancing on top of them, hoping they will absorb all of the water? Grab all the fans you own and try to set them in just the right places, hoping that everything will dry out in time? Go ahead and try those techniques, but you will have a huge and more costly headache to deal with in a month.

If you choose to call a restoration company, be sure to call one who has the certifications to back up their work.

We will extract the water from the affected areas and remove any wall that is not salvageable, ultimately leaving you a clean, bacteria-free slate to work with. We even have a construction division that can help you get your home back to preloss condition. Just call SERVPRO of Newton/Wellesley and we will walk you through the process. You will be informed and updated of the restoration/mitigation process throughout the entire job so that nothing is questionable. We are your go-to! Give us a call even if you just have a question and we will be happy to help.

Storms Causes Flooding

1/25/2019 (Permalink)

A powerful front crossing west to east across New England with torrential rain and melting snow resulted in flooding and wind gust past 50 mph with a thunderstorm.

This combination of heavy rain and warm temperatures melted large piles plenty of snow in New England on Friday. And with many storm drains still blocked by snow and ice, localized flooding occurred in streets, low river banks and in particular, many homeowners’ basements.

When your home or commercial property has water damage from flooding or leaks, we have the expertise and equipment to properly restore your property. SERVPRO of Newton/Wellesley’s experience and scientific approach to water removal and water cleanup enable us to properly dry and restore your property.

Should I get Flood Insurance?

8/13/2018 (Permalink)

Should I get flood insurance always crosses a homeowners mind after a situation has arose and unfortunately in most cases, that option is too late. According to FEMA, Standard homeowner’s insurance policies do not cover flood. Flood is most often called an excluded peril, meaning it’s not covered. You should consider flood insurance even if you’re not required to purchase it or if you live outside a high-risk flood zone, called a Special Flood Hazard Area.

Flood zones are areas where there is a higher statistical probability of a flood occurring, but that doesn’t mean floods don’t occur elsewhere. In fact, in Texas over the last five years, a number of floods exceeded the statistical probability, putting more homes and properties in harm’s way than were expected.

Flood insurance can protect you from the catastrophic financial impact of flooding. Just a few inches of water can mean thousands of dollars of loss to your home or business. As long as your community participates in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), as a homeowner or business owner you can get building and contents coverage included in your NFIP policy. Renters can get coverage for contents only. Policies issued by the NFIP pay even if a federal disaster is not declared.

Where can I buy flood insurance?

When should I buy a policy?

As soon as possible. FEMA urges you to buy flood insurance before a flood event occurs. NFIP cannot pay a claim if you don’t have a policy in effect when damage occurs. An insurance policy from NFIP becomes effective 30 days after you buy it, unless the purchase is associated with the origination, renewal or extension of a federally backed loan on property in a high-risk area.

I am not in a flood hazard area, but I’d like to purchase flood insurance. Is this possible?

Yes, as long as your community participates in NFIP. You are eligible to purchase a flood policy with the same coverage you would receive if you lived in a high-risk area. A Preferred Risk Policy (a lower-cost flood insurance policy) provides both building and contents coverage for properties in moderate-to-low risk areas for one price.

Can I get flood insurance if I'm renting a property?

Yes. If you live in a community that participates in NFIP and you are a renter, you can get flood insurance to cover the contents of your home, apartment or business at a rented location.

Dangers of Rotted Wood

7/16/2018 (Permalink)

Occasionally, it is very obvious to the homeowner when their house is in need for repair.   For instance water gushing from a pipe burst.

However, unlike major water leaks or broken windows, rotting wood can easily escape notice, unless you specifically look for it. And unfortunately, like a spot of rust on a car, wood rot can spread far and wide, making it especially dangerous to your home’s wooden building materials.

Be on the lookout for any sign of soft, brittle, or crumbly wood. In extreme cases rotten wood may even disintegrate as you touch it.

As you poke around, keep your eyes peeled for discoloration, which is a sign of fungi and rot. Also, if you find a surface with peeling paint that feels damp, you may have just uncovered a water leak behind that spot. Investigate further and fix any leaks you find.

Check any painted or sealed wooden surfaces on your home’s exterior for cracks in the paint or sealant. Any crack you find, even small ones, can allow water to work its way into the wooden material, resulting in rot.

Because of its tendency to spread, you should repair rotten wood ASAP when you discover it, and make sure you fix it completely. Otherwise, you will only face more serious and extensive repairs down the road. Ultimately, serious enough wood rot can even compromise your home’s structural integrity.

You should inspect your home for rotting wood at least annually - or twice per year if you live in a damp climate. Ideally, make this inspection a regular part of your spring and fall maintenance routine, it will save you from a lot of heartache and money.  

What Causes A Dishwasher to Overflow?

6/25/2018 (Permalink)

As stated in HomeSteady; An overflowing dishwasher can be a serious problem in your kitchen. Water leaking from the unit can cause damage to your floors that requires major repair. Several underlying problems can cause a dishwasher to overflow with water and detergent. The problems range from simple user error to faulty parts that need adjustment or replacement. Knowing the potential causes can help you diagnose and repair the problem quickly before more damage occurs.

  1. Dish Detergent:

The most common reason for dishwasher overflow is soapsuds. By using a poor detergent that leaves more than 1/2 inch of suds on top of the water, a soapy overflow can happen. Also, the addition of even a very small amount of dishwasher liquid or hand soap can cause overflow around the door. If you have inadvertently put too much detergent or the wrong type of soap into the machine, add some vinegar to the tub to remove the foam.

  1. Door Gasket

If water is leaking out around the dishwasher door and it is not soapy or foamy, there is a good chance that the door gasket has worn out. The door gasket is a rubber seal that surrounds the door opening and prevents such leaking. But if the gasket is torn, worn, dirty or missing entirely, it can easily allow large amounts of water through the opening and into the floor. Replacement is generally the best way to repair this problem.

  1. Tub Seal

If the motor in your dishwasher is mounted vertically beneath the main rack in the bottom center of your machine, the tub seal may be leaking, which typically results in water overflowing underneath the dishwasher and running either behind or out in front of the unit. With this type of motor, you can remove the seal from its housing and replace it to solve the problem. Otherwise, you may have a motor that is mounted horizontally. These machines are not as self-service friendly and usually require professional repair or complete replacement of the motor assembly.

  1. Water Supply Tube

Water flows from the same water pipes that supply the rest of your home into a supply tube that hooks into the machine, generally near the bottom rear of the dishwasher. If you are seeing evidence of overflow, the problem may not be an overflow at all. In fact, the water possibly never reached the machine at all. Holes in the supply tube will result in water spillage as will improperly connected tubes. Water may actually be spilling out from the connector and causing you to think there is a problem with the machine.

A Flood's Aftermath

5/7/2018 (Permalink)

After the waters have receded, the rainstorm has passed mold will start to set in and your sense of smell will be the first to detect it. You will then need to contact SERVPRO immediately to prevent further damage.  A guide on the U.S. EPA website outlines the hazards of mold:

Molds reproduce by means of tiny spores; the spores are invisible to the naked eye and float through outdoor and indoor air …There are many types of mold, and none of them will grow without water or moisture. 

Something smells

Mold cannot be seen floating in the air, but you won’t have any trouble sniffing out its presence. It’s an odor that will initially tickle your sinuses and cause your eyes to water, but you shouldn’t keep inhaling.

Undoing the damage

It takes a professional company, like SERVPRO of Newton / Wellesley to perform mold damage restoration properly following specific procedures . They will begin by reducing the vicinity’s moisture levels because that’s what mold thrives on. They will also need to check your home’s HVAC system to see if it was compromised. Visible mold on walls and ceilings will need to be scrubbed off with cleaning solution.

The Aftermath

While water damage restoration and mold remediation will rid the house of contaminants, some areas affected by mold cannot be restored to their original appearance. Some items may need to be discarded because they are beyond repair and could serve as a hiding place for mold 

Absorbent or porous materials, such as ceiling tiles and carpet, may have to be thrown away if they become moldy. Mold can grow on or fill in the empty spaces and crevices of porous materials.

Regardless of the weather, try to keep the humidity in your house low using dehumidifier devices or products. It is also beneficial to maintain your HVAC system to ensure the temperature doesn’t produce excessive condensation. Between these tips and professionals from 
SERVPPRO of Newton / Wellesley, mold will be hard-pressed to find a way into your home. 

Actions to Take for a House Flood

4/9/2018 (Permalink)

Floods can be caused by a variety of things and you will want to implement these practices to ensure the safety of you and your home, as well as having the best outcome with your insurance.

Avoid Risks

If you had to evacuate, make sure it is safe before you return. Check for any warping, cracked foundations, or other structural damage before entering the home. You may also want to speak to your utility companies to be sure it is safe from things such as electric or gas.


The water that is now in your home could be contaminated by sewage. It is recommended that you wear waist high waders or waterproof boots that come waist high. Also, dispose of any food that comes in contact with the water.

Take Pictures

Before doing anything to your home after a flood be sure to take photos or videos of your home to prove the damage to your insurance company.

Contact your insurance provider

Make sure you have your insurance company's phone number in case you experience a flood. Let your insurance representative know the extent of the damage to your home and of any repairs you wish to make. 

Clean Up

This is where SERVPRO steps in. We will help remove water from your house and afterwards mitigate mold so that there are no long lasting negative effect on you or your house.

What To Do When Water Damages Documents

3/23/2018 (Permalink)

Even in the age of technology, one of the biggest losses after a flood or water emergency is documents. Not only is the cost of getting new ones a factor, but the emotional value as well -- loosing favorite books or family heirlooms can be tough to handle. Fortunately, it's possible in many instances to save documents affected by flooding.

Many homeowners that experience flood damage are often relieved and surprised to learn that their treasured books and important documents don't have to be tossed out automatically. By calling us as quickly as possible after a flood, you'll increase the chances that your documents can be dried and salvaged. Here are some ways that we work to dry books and papers after a flood.

Air Drying 
SERVPRO of Newton / Wellesley often uses equipment that efficiently air dries books and documents. This process works well for items that have not sat in water for extended periods of time, those made of more resilient paper, and documents with sturdy covers or binding.

Humidity will break down paper over time, which is why it's important to dehumidify homes with flood damage. Our team will set up equipment to get rid of excess humidity in combination with other techniques to increase the chances of saving your documents and books.

Freeze Drying
Sometimes a rush of cold air helps prevent irreversible damage to papers and books, and this works best when done soon after a flood. Freeze drying is an option with photos and vintage documents as well as books.

Vacuum Drying
SERVPRO of Newton / Wellesley has advanced equipment capable of vacuum freeze-drying and thermal drying documents within homes with flood damage. Using these two methods, even older materials and those that are valuable or fragile can have a chance of being restored. Our expert training and a large inventory of equipment offer the best opportunity to recover water damaged documents, photos, and soft materials.

If you've experienced a water emergency, count on the experts at SERVPRO of Newton / Wellesley to get your home and possessions back in good shape. Whenever possible, we'll dry out your documents to prevent the expense and hassle of getting replacements. For a quote or to learn more about our flood damage restoration services, call us 24/7 at (617) 332 9000

When A Washing Machine Wreaks Havoc

3/23/2018 (Permalink)

One of the most well-known causes of water damage in your home, washing machines can cause costly damage. After the deductible is paid, the average claim nationally for water damage from washing machine malfunction is more than five thousand dollars.

Supply Hose Leaks
Over fifty percent of claims from washing machine water damage can be traced to the failure of your supply hose. It can be caused by an aging hose, a poor connection to the wall or machine, or the hose being pinched while it is installed, causing a hairline break. Intake hoses are high-flow lines and can put out more than six hundred gallons of water in one hour. If the supply hose on your machine is over five years old or is not steel braided, get it replaced as soon as you can.

Drainage Issues And Flooding
If there is a clog in your drainage pipe, the sewer backs up, or your drain pipe is not properly lined up, the drainage system of your washing machine causes some water damage at least. Most importantly, avoid a clog in the sewer line. When this backs up, you can be faced withwater damagethat is filled with contaminates and poses serious risks to health. You most definitely need the help of the professionals at SERVPRO if this happens to you since they have the proper equipment and training to clean up the mess safely.

Internal Leaks
Your washing machine doesn't have to be incorrectly installed, old, or built poorly to create an internal leak. Overloading your machine on a regular basis can cause valves, gaskets, and bushings to crack or loosen. Smaller loads, even if it takes longer to do the laundry, keep your machine from shaking itself apart.

Identifying Your Leak
If you have a leak that is constant, you likely have an issue with the supply hose. It is probably an internal leak if it happens during the wash cycle but before the spin cycle. With water on the floor during the spin cycle or right after the machine turns off, you probably have a drainage issue.

Why Ground Water Comes Up Through Basement Floors

3/23/2018 (Permalink)

When you discover water in your basement it is natural to think that you have a basement leak; that water is somehow finding its way through your foundation wall. When your basement is unfinished and there is water on the floor and no evidence of a leaking foundation crack or anything else in the foundation wall, what should you think? It is for this reason that many homeowners wonder: why is water coming up through my basement floor or up through floor cracks?

Ground waterunder your basement floor is oftenunder tremendous pressure caused by a risingwater table, the height of which is affected by several common factors such as:

  • How much and how often it has rained;
  • The type of soil around the home;
  • The hydrological conditions around the property;
  • How fast the snow melted; and
  • If the downspouts for your eavestroughs are directed into the weeping tile.

All of those factors can cause a rapid local rise in the water table; consequently, a lot of water can enter your basement from beneaththe floor in a very short period of time.

Other causes of a high water table and seepage into thebasement

  • Sump Pump Failure– If your sump pump isn't working then you aren't draining water at the base of your foundation as was intended. This situation will cause the water table to rise, sometimes to the point that the basement floods.
  • Clogged Weeping / Drain Tile– Depending on the age of the home and other factors, weeping tile can become clogged and non-functional.While complete weeping tile failure is unlikely, poor footing drainage at the base of the foundation wall could result in the pooling of water and a consequential rise in the height of the water table.

Pipe Bursts Keeps SERVPRO of Newton/Wellesley & Framingham Crews Busy

2/20/2018 (Permalink)

Originally posted in the Metro West Daily News:

As temperatures in MetroWest plummeted to minus-12 degrees Sunday, business for David Kurzontkowski started heating up.

Kurzontkowski, owner of SERVPRO Framingham, said the extreme cold over the weekend caused sprinkler heads to pop and pipes to burst in homes and commercial buildings. Kurzontkowski, whose crews go in to clean up damage after emergencies, said his phone started ringing at 9 a.m. Sunday “and then it just hasn’t stopped since.”

“I’m just driving from burst pipe to burst pipe,” he said Monday.

And now, as it gets warmer, there’s still a high risk: He expects more water pipes that froze from the cold will burst as they start to thaw out.

“I think it’s going to get a little worse before it gets better,” Kurzontkowski said.

Plumbers, firefighters and cleanup crews across the region kept busy dealing with heat problems and burst pipes and don’t expect it to slow down for days.

The Culprits of Water Damage

7/31/2017 (Permalink)

Although every water damage situation is a little different, these are the most common causes of water damage in a home that we deal with on a daily basis.

  1. Broken Pipes & Hoses: Aging pipes, washing machine hoses, ice maker supply lines are common culprits of water damage,
  2. Accidents! Usually caused by kids! Splashing water out of the bathtub and sending a toy down the toilet will wreak havoc, but will also provide a good story years down the road. 
  3. Sewer back up. This unfortunate mess is usually caused by tree roots invading and clogging drain lines in their own search for water.
  4. Basement Humidity: The only remedy to hydrostatic pressure and aging infrastructure is to install a dehumidifier. 
  5. Flash Flooding: Mother Nature is unpredictable so it is best to purchase flood insurance if available!

Water Damage Tip for Property Owners

6/12/2017 (Permalink)

Water Damage Response Tips for Home Owners:

(These tips are for Category 1 water situations ONLY, which is water that originates from a sanitary source and poses no substantial risk from dermal, ingestion, or inhalation exposure.)

  • Shut off the source of water if possible or contact a qualified party to stop the water source.
  • Turn off circuit breakers for wet areas of the home/building, when access to the power panel is safe from electrical shock.
  • Remove excess water by mopping or blotting.
  • Wipe excess water from wood furniture after removing lamps and tabletop items.
  • Remove Oriental or other colored rugs from wet carpeting.
  • Do not use a regular vacuum to remove water.
  • Do not turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet, and keep out of areas where ceilings are sagging from retained water.
  • Do not leave books, magazines, or other colored items on wet carpeting.

Even small water damages have the potential to cause serious structural and indoor air quality issues over time.  The key to avoiding costly future restoration is to handle every water problem as a real threat to your property.  If you have any questions or need help to ensure your property is drying properly, contact SERVPRO of Framingham (508) 370-4400. 

What is a Sewer Backup?

5/18/2017 (Permalink)


While floods are probably best known for causing extensive water damage to homes and businesses, they can also cause sewage from sanitary sewer lines to back up into houses through drain pipes. These backups not only cause damage that is difficult and expensive to repair, but also create health hazards.

Most homeowners and business owners may not realize that they are responsible for the maintenance and repair of their house or sewer lateral – the pipeline between the city sanitary sewer main, usually located under the street, and the building. The sewer lateral is owned and maintained by the property owner including any part that may extend into the street or public right of way. A cracked or deteriorated lateral or one filled with tree roots can allow groundwater to seep into the system, contributing to the possible sewer backup problems.

A sewer backup can lead to disease, destruction of your valuables, damage to your house or business, and can even result in electrical malfunctions. Prompt cleanup of the affected property can help minimize the inconvenience and prevent mold and further damage.

That’s where SERVPRO of Newton / Wellesley can help 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Sewage backup should be considered an emergency and dealt with as quickly as possible. We are the water damage restoration specialists with specific training and expertise to safely restore your home or business.


6 Common Causes of Flooding

5/18/2017 (Permalink)

Flooding is not only aggravating but it is also can ruin your possessions, significantly affect your home’s structure, and necessitate extensive repairs. Here are 6 of the most common causes of residential flooding.

  1. Broken Pipes

Just one water leak can signal major flooding problems in the future — it only takes minutes for a broken pipe to send water gushing into your home. It’s important to be cautious of even minor leaks and to know where your home’s main valve to shut off the water is located in case of an emergency.                

  1. Poor Drainage

Not only are floods caused by improper drainage a huge inconvenience, it’s a hazard that can ruin your flooring, walls, and fixtures.        

  1. Clogged Rain Gutters

A house’s rain gutters are meant to divert excess water away from it, but if the gutters are clogged with debris the chances of flooding rise significantly. Heavy rainfall and rain gutters filled with dirt and debris lead to a messy situation that can end up costing you a lot of money in repairs. It’s best to be proactive and regularly clean your gutters.

  1. Malfunctioning Appliances

An improperly connected or broken water heater, dishwasher, or washing machine can wreak havoc on your home and flood it with water. Its important to ensure there are no leaks or problems with the water supply to your major appliances.

  1. Damaged Foundation

If your home’s foundation is damaged with flaws or cracking, it can allow water to enter through the floors. A house’s foundation is always resting on the ground, even when it becomes over-saturated with water from storms, melted ice and snow, or other precipitation. Homes resting on good, solid foundations aren’t usually affected, but damaged foundations can lead to severe floods. 

  1. The Weather

This is the one cause of flooding that you really can’t do much about, aside from having an emergency weather plan, a good foundation, and a functioning pump.

While some causes of flooding are hard to control, most are preventable. Knowing the common causes of home flooding and being proactive can save a great deal of stress and money in the long run.


Flooded Basement? What type of water could be in your basement.

4/13/2017 (Permalink)

Early spring brings melting snow and heavy rains, all which could potentially pose a threat to flooding your basement.  We get a lot of questions on the types of water.  To help you understand what kind of water could potentially be in your basement there are (3) categories:

Category 1:  Known as "clean water" which is clean at the releasing source and does not pose a hazard if consumed by humans.  Most of the water that comes into your home will be Category 1 until it leaves its source, either a supply line, an appliance, or melting snow or rain.  The water in this category may become cotaminated as it mixes with soils on or within floor coverings, walls, subfloors, etc..  

Category 2:   Water that begins with some degree of contamination and could cause sickness or discomfort if consumed by humans.  Also know as "gray water"  is typically overflow water from an appliance, toilet, or aquarium.  

Category 3:Water which is highly contaminated and could cause death or serious illness if consumed by humans. Also know as "black water" examples are sewage, rising flood water from rivers and streams, ground surface water flowing horizontally into homes.

Do's & Don'ts: Damage from Contaminated Water

3/28/2017 (Permalink)

Do’s & Don’ts: Damage From Contaminated Water


                Avoid all contact with sewage and items and contaminated by sewage.

                Wash your hands thoroughly after contact with contaminated items.


                Spread contaminated water by walking unnecessarily on damaged or wet areas.

                Turn on the HVAC system if there is a possibility of spreading contaminated air.

                Use household fans to dry the structure and spread contaminants.

                Use products for personal hygiene and cleanliness if exposed to the contaminated areas.

However if exposed to harmful waste, OSHA recommends a post-exposure medical evaluation.  Consult your local health department or physician.

     When you are dealing with water damage, immediate action is crucial, contact SERVPRO Framingham and SERVPRO Newton/Wellesley.  Our response is immediate and we use advanced equipment and techniques to remove the water quickly.  We closely monitor and document the drying process to verify your property is dried properly and thoroughly. The main goal of SERVPRO of Framingham and Newton/Wellesley is to help minimize the interruption to your life and as quickly as possible make it "like it never even happened." 


Proper Water Damage Restoration

3/28/2017 (Permalink)

 Even small water damages have the potential to cause serious structural and indoor air quality issues over time.  The key to avoiding costly future restoration is to handle every water problem as a real threat to your property. 

Don’t treat flood water in unwanted places lightly: even if your basement only has an inch of water in it, or is even just damp, it is the perfect breeding ground for mold. Mold growth not only ruins walls, furniture, carpets, flooring to name a few.  Mold can lead to poor indoor air quality causing respiratory problems including asthma, and can lead to severe illness. Preventing mold growth is key to keeping your home’s air clean and healthy. 

SERVPRO Framingham and SERVPRO Newton/Wellesley specialize in restoring contents damaged by fire, water, or mold. Their expertise and “restore” versus “replace” mentality can help you save money while preserving precious keepsakes that can’t be replaced. They pretest your contents to determine what items can be restored back to their condition before the water damage. SERVPRO Professionals utilize several methods of cleaning your contents, including:

  • Dry Cleaning - Used for cleaning light residues or to pre-clean prior to wet cleaning.
  • Wet Cleaning - An effective cleaning method for removing moderate to heavy residues.
  • Spray and Wipe -Effective for items that can’t withstand wet cleaning.
  • Foam Cleaning - Used for upholstery fabrics that might shrink or bleed if wet cleaned.
  • Abrasive Cleaning - Involves agitation of the surface being cleaned. 
  • Immersion Cleaning - Contents are dipped into a bath of the cleaning product. 

          SERVPRO Framingham and SERVPRO Newton/Wellesley provides emergency cleaning and restoration services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week—including all holidays. You can expect an immediate response time, day or night.

Why chose an IICRC firm like SERVPRO of Newton/Wellesley?

6/27/2016 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Newton/Wellesley is an IICRC firm giving you the confidence that the right people make it "Like it never even happened".

Always Look for the IICRC logo 

IICRC Certified Firms have earned the right to display the IICRC logo as a symbol of quality. In order to achieve IICRC-certified status, firms must meet a rigorous list of standards in business ethics and expertise. All IICRC Certified Firms must:

  • Present accurate information to consumers and conduct business with honesty and integrity.
  • Require a technician on all jobs who has been formally trained and passed all required tests.
  • Require a continuing education program to keep technicians up-to-date on the latest changes in the industry.
  • Maintain liability insurance to protect all parties in the event of an accident.
  • Maintain a written complaint policy and agree to Better Business Bureau or similar arbitration to resolve disputes, and accept the conclusions and recommendations of arbitration.

When it comes to cleaning, restoration and inspection, the IICRC writes the books

As an ANSI-accredited Standards Developing Organization (SDO), the IICRC has led the way in establishing the main industry standards and reference guides for professional carpet cleaning, upholstery and fabric cleaning, water damage restoration and mold remediation.

Each IICRC standard takes years to develop and the coordination of several experts in the field, including allied tradespersons; manufacturers; international, national and regional trade associations; individual or franchise professionals; cleaning, inspection and restoration industry organizations; insurance industry; training schools; contractors; and public health professionals.

These standards are reviewed and updated at least every five years. Many of these fields, such as the water damage restoration field, change rapidly and those who are certified keep up with the advancement of the science and generally accepted practices of the industry.

The IICRC helps keep homes and businesses healthful

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the average person spends 90 percent or more of their time indoors, where levels of pollutants may be two to five times (and occasionally more than 100 times) higher than outdoor levels.

This makes it extremely important to perform regular maintenance inside your home or business. In addition to vacuuming, cleaning and checking for water damage on a regular basis, using a certified technician for cleaning will help extend the life of your flooring and upholstery and ensure that your home or business is healthful for those who live and work there.

SERVPRO of Newton/Wellesley is here to help with all your restoration needs, please contact our office at (617) 332-9000.

Flooded Basement? What type of water do you have in your basement.

4/4/2016 (Permalink)

SERVPRO is your 24/7 emergency restoration specialist.

Earlyspring brings melting snow and heavy rains, all which could potentially pose a threat to flooding your basement.  We get a lot of questions on the types of water.  To help you understand what kind of water could potentially be in your basement there are (3) categories:

Category 1:  Known as "clean water" which is clean at the releasing source and does not pose a hazard if consumed by humans.  Most of the water that comes into your home will be Category 1 until it leaves its source, either a supply line, an appliance, or melting snow or rain.  The water in this category may become cotaminated as it mixes with soils on or within floor coverings, walls, subfloors, etc..  

Category 2:   Water that begins with some degree of contamination and could cause sickness or discomfort if consumed by humans.  Also know as "gray water"  is typically overflow water from an appliance, toilet, or aquarium.  

Category 3:Water which is highly contaminated and could cause death or serious illness if consumed by humans. Also know as "black water" examples are sewage, rising flood water from rivers and streams, ground surface water flowing horizontally into homes.

Water Damage Tip for Property Owners

1/7/2016 (Permalink)

Water Damage Response Tips for Home Owners

(These tips are for Category 1 water situations ONLY, which is water that originates from a sanitary source and poses no substantial risk from dermal, ingestion, or inhalation exposure.)

  • Shut off the source of water if possible or contact a qualified party to stop the water source.
  • Turn off circuit breakers for wet areas of the home/building, when access to the power panel is safe from electrical shock.
  • Remove excess water by mopping or blotting.
  • Wipe excess water from wood furniture after removing lamps and tabletop items.
  • Remove Oriental or other colored rugs from wet carpeting.
  • Do not use a regular vacuum to remove water.
  • Do not turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet, and keep out of areas where ceilings are sagging from retained water.
  • Do not leave books, magazines, or other colored items on wet carpeting.

Even small water damages have the potential to cause serious structural and indoor air quality issues over time.  The key to avoiding costly future restoration is to handle every water problem as a real threat to your property.  If you have any questions or need help to ensure your property is drying properly, call SERVPRO of Newton-Wellesley (617) 332-9000. 

Frozen Pipes Facts

12/7/2015 (Permalink)

Frozen Pipe Facts

Water has a unique property in that it expands as it freezes. This expansion puts tremendous pressure on whatever is containing it, including metal and plastic pipes.  No matter the strength of a container, expanding water can cause pipes to break.  Pipes that freeze most frequently are those that are exposed to severe cold.

During cold weather, take preventative action:

- Let the cold water drip from the faucet served by exposed pipes. Running water, even at a trickle, helps prevent freezing.

- Keep the thermostat set to the same temperature both during the day and night.  You may incur a little higher heating bill, but, you can prevent a much more costly repair job if a pipe were to burst.

- If you will be going away during cold weather, leave the heat on in your home, set to a temperature no lower than 55 degrees.

To thaw frozen pipes:

- If you turn on a faucet and only a trickle comes out, suspect a frozen pipe.  Likely places include against exterior walls or where your water service enters your home through the foundation.

- Keep the faucet open.  As you treat the pipe and the frozen area begins to melt, water will begin to flow through the frozen area.  Running water will help melt the ice inside.

- Apply heat to the section of pipe like using an electric heating pad or hairdryer.  Never use an open flame.

- Apply heat until full water pressure is restored.  If you cannot thaw the pipe, call a licensed plumber.

- Check all other faucets in your home to find out if you have additional frozen pipes.

***If in doubt about any of the above steps or if you do not feel comfortable with the situation, it is always best to contact a licensed plumber.

In the event you incur frozen pipe damage, SERVPRO of Newton / Wellesley trained technicians are available 24/7 to assist with your cleanup and restoration needs.