Recent Posts

Did You Know: A Water Damaged Wall Can Be Dried & Restored, Rather Than Replaced?

5/10/2022 (Permalink)

water damaged wall with holes drilled along bottom of wall and fan Drilling small holes along the bottom of the wall and ventilating the wall cavity can greatly reduce drying time.

So a plumbing leak or other water intrusion leaves you with wet walls. Here’s the question we at SERVPRO often get: Do the walls have to be removed and replaced? Well, it depends.

In the past, restoration practices called for the replacement of wet drywall from walls. Today there is technology that allows SERVPRO to save walls by drying them, which significantly reduces restoration costs.

It’s part of SERVPRO’s restore vs. replace philosophy, and it can save homeowners (or businesses) a bundle.

Factors to Consider & Steps Involved

When floodwaters or sewage have entered the home—or when structural integrity has been compromised--industry standards require the removal of porous building materials. In most other cases, saving a wall is possible when a skilled restorer such as SERVPRO of Jacksonville Northwest uses the appropriate techniques.

A common impediment to effectively drying walls is a vapor barrier, which is a material that impedes the evaporation of moisture from walls or other materials. Removing the outer vapor barrier or perforating gloss paint expedites the drying process.

Another consideration is insulation. A wall may contain fiberglass, spray foam, or blown-in insulation. Blown-in fiberglass can compact and move down the wall cavity when it becomes wet. When this happens, the insulating properties of the materials cannot be restored. The insulation will need to be removed and replaced. Fiberglass insulation with paper backing can usually be successfully dried using air injection or similar methods. Sprayed-in insulation usually needs to be removed.

Drying can be accelerated by drilling small holes along the bottom of the wall and ventilating the wall cavity, greatly reducing drying time. When drying is complete, these holes are patched or, ideally, covered by baseboard. The process described above is faster and less expensive than removing and replacing walls.

SERVPRO’s IICRC-certified technicians employ a specific set of standards that incorporate the field of psychometry, which involves the manipulation of temperature and relative humidity, and special equipment to measure and remove moisture and to dry a property quickly and effectively.

Severe Weather Forecast for Jacksonville and Surrounding Areas

3/9/2022 (Permalink)

storm clouds on the horizon Be prepared for severe weather in our area over the next few days.

The National Weather Service is predicting severe weather for Northeast Florida and Southeast Georgia over the next couple of days. Here’s a summary of their weather briefing.

Weather Impact Overview Southeast Georgia & Northeast Florida

  • Severe Thunderstorm Potential by Afternoon
  • Main Areas: SE Georgia & Suwannee River Valley
  • Main hazards: Isolated tornado (SE GA), damaging winds, small hail
  • Thunderstorms & Waves of Heavy Rain through Saturday
  • Potential for a few strong to severe thunderstorms Thursday & Friday
  • Severe storms possible with squall line passage Friday Night
  • Periods of Heavy rainfall, especially Thursday Night through Friday night
  • Small Craft Advisory Outer Waters Today
  • Small Craft Conditions Friday Night through Sunday
  • Frequent Gusts to Gale Force Friday Night
  • Saturday Inland Freeze Saturday Night & Inland Frost Sunday Night 

Be safe and be sure to listen out for weather alerts as conditions can change quickly. If you suffer storm damage, we can help! Call SERVPRO of Jacksonville Northwest at 904.256.4894.

Flooding at Jacksonville Commercial Warehouse Due to Broken Water Main

3/1/2022 (Permalink)

techs cleaning water from flooded Jacksonville warehouse It is very common for broken or cracked pipes to occur in commercial buildings.

This large one-story commercial warehouse just outside of Jacksonville flooded 15,000-16,000 sq. ft. Some 6000 gallons of water were released from the broken water main to the air conditioner chiller unit. Cleanup required extraction of water and oil. Water was then pumped to 500 gallon waste containers to be hauled off by a hazardous waste company.

Notice in the accompanying photo the extent of the water damage. Flooding in commercial buildings can happen very quickly, especially if there is no one on site to identify the problem. What starts out as a small water leak can turn into something larger, and cause significantly more damage than expected. If your commercial property has old pipes, there is a higher chance of water damage occurring. Broken pipes are a common cause of water damage in commercial facilities. It is very common for broken or cracked pipes to occur in commercial buildings, especially when they age. When a pipe bursts, water rushes out of them, spraying throughout the whole building. A busted pipe can cause damage to the walls, ceilings, flooring, and any other contents you have filling that space.

Our customer was very pleased with our quick response and fast turnaround time. No job is too big or too small for this SERVPRO team!

If you have water damage or flooding at your commercial facility, call SERVPRO of Jacksonville Northwest at 904.256.4894.

Flood Tips: What you can do until help arrives

2/17/2022 (Permalink)

flooded house with SERVPRO logo superimposed If you have storm damage or flooding, call SERVPRO of Jacksonville Northwest at 904.256.4894.

After any water damage situation, your primary focus should be safety first:

  • Is it safe to stay in the house?
  • Electrical and "slip and fall" hazards are some of the most prevalent concerns.
  • Only do activities that are safe for you to perform.
  • Wet materials can be VERY heavy. Be careful!

Have A Water Damage Emergency? Call SERVPRO of Jacksonville Northwest at 904.256.4894.

What To Do After Flooding

  • Remove excess water by mopping and blotting.
  • Wipe excess water from wood furniture after removal of lamps and tabletop items.
  • Remove and prop wet upholstery and cushions.
  • Place aluminum foil or wood blocks between furniture legs and wet carpeting.
  • Turn air conditioning on for maximum drying in summer.
  • Remove colored rugs from wet carpeting.
  • Remove art objects to a safe, dry place.
  • Gather loose items from floors.

What NOT To Do After Flooding

  • Don't leave wet fabrics in place. Hang furs and leather goods.
  • Don't leave books, magazines or other colored items on wet carpet or floors.
  • Don't use your household vacuum to remove water.
  • Don't use television or other household appliances.
  • Don't turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet, and keep out of rooms where ceilings are sagging.

SERVPRO of Jacksonville Northwest Can Help With Commercial Property Damages and Maintenance  

2/9/2022 (Permalink)

water damage in commercial facility with graphic "Your Problem, Our Solution."  SERVPRO of Jacksonville Northwest can help with water, fire or mold damages to commercial properties as well as maintenance and general cleaning.

Preventative maintenance is one of the most important steps that can be taken to reduce the risk of structural damage at your commercial property.  Whether lessening the risk of water, fire, or mold damages, there are strategies that can be employed:

Water

  • Periodically check plumbing and fixtures for broken or cracked gaskets or seals and/or small leaks. The sooner you catch an issue and repair it, the less likely your small leak will become a catastrophe.
  • Maintain landscaping around your property. Debris in drainage ditches, overgrown weeds, or clogged storm drains can result it rainwater backing up and flooding your property.  Maintaining the exterior of the property reduces this risk, especially if heavy rains are in the forecast.
  • Roof Maintenance! Damaged roofs provide not only the perfect entry point for storm water to flow into your building but can also allow moisture to become trapped in ceilings and attics, increasing the likelihood of mold growth.

Fire

  • Have a licensed electrician check wiring in the building. Especially in older properties, faulty wiring is a common source of commercial fire damage.
  • If your building is equipped with a fire suppression system, make sure it is in working order. If not, be sure to have plenty of in-date fire extinguishers located throughout the property, so that in case of fire, a small issue has less opportunity to become a large disaster.
  • Properly store and label any combustible or hazardous materials, such as gasoline, diesel, or chemicals. Improperly stored hazardous materials can provide an ignition source and make putting out the fire more dangerous and difficult.

Mold

  • Reduce moisture within the building by running a dehumidifier. Especially in the more humid climate of Northern Florida, eliminating as much moisture as possible within the business can reduce the potential for mold growth.
  • If you see signs of water intrusion, such as staining or puddling, identify the source, fix it, and dry the area as soon as possible! With porous materials, such as drywall, it only takes a minimal amount of moisture to create the conditions for microbial growth, and growth can begin in as little as 24-48 hours.
  • Have your HVAC/Duct Work cleaned regularly. This provides better air quality for the property and reduces the circulation of contaminants.  If you have confirmed a mold issue at your business, do NOT run the HVAC system, as this could circulate the mold spores and widen the spread.

When it comes to maintaining your commercial property, know that SERVPRO of Jacksonville Northwest is Here to Help.  Our team of professionals is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, for emergency damages.  Serving Jacksonville, Callahan, Yulee, and surrounding communities, we have the equipment, expertise, and experience to handle damages of all sizes!

It's the Water that You Can't See

2/2/2022 (Permalink)

A diagram showing areas of the home that you can't see that can be affected by a water leak When you have a leak, many areas of your home that you can't see can be affected.

When your home or business experiences a major flood, there’s no chance you won’t see it.

A few inches of water in your basement, an overflowing toilet or a broken sprinkler are tough to overlook and so is the damage they cause.

However, there is a culprit that might not make a big splash, but can cause serious structural and indoor air quality issues: the water you don’t see.

Sometimes you might have hidden leaks or humidity issues that can start small and grow large in their destruction over time. The little leaks might turn into large deluges or wear away at structures, the humidity could make conditions right for mold growth and bad odors.

As a home or business owner, you want to be on the lookout for these sneaky sources of water loss. You also want to make sure that, if you do experience a large flood, to get it cleaned up properly. Improper water cleanup can leave those hidden problems behind.

As the diagram shows, when you have a leak, many areas can be affected. Water can make its way into sheathing, studs, insulation, drywall, baseboards, carpet and padding, wall plate, sub-floor, sill plate, and your basement and foundation.

This is where SERVPRO of Jacksonville Northwest comes in. We have the knowledge and experience clean up water damage of any size and get it done right the first time. We also have the proper equipment to find any moisture lurking out of sight and do away with it.

For example, we have moisture sensors, which are used to detect moisture in carpets, baseboards and walls. We have moisture meters that we use to test the actual moisture content of materials. The meters allow our technicians to accurately monitor the drying process.

And if hidden water leads to bad odors in your business, we have the tools necessary to take care of those as well. Some examples are ultra low-volume foggers and thermal foggers.

The lesson here is to be aware that water losses can be hiding in your home or business and if you find them, you can count on us to fix them.

Call SERVPRO of Jacksonville Northwest at 904.256.4894.

Flooding Strikes Three Units in Jacksonville Condo

1/26/2022 (Permalink)

flooded carpet in Jacksonville condo unit If you have water damage or flooding, call us at 904.256.4894.

Flooding from a toilet supply line damaged three units in a Jacksonville condo. Fortunately, SERVPRO of Jacksonville Northwest arrived on the scene quickly to extract water and began the drying process in order to minimize damages.

The first 24 hours following a water loss are the most important in preventing secondary or permanent damage. Here are some steps you can take while waiting for the professionals of SERVPRO of Jacksonville Northwest to arrive.

Emergency Water Damage Tips

  • Shut-off the water source, if possible or contact a professional such as SERVPRO, a plumber, or maintenance personnel to stop the water source.
  • Turn-off circuit breakers for wet areas of the building when access to the power distribution panel is safe from electrical shock.
  • Remove as much excess water as possible by mopping and blotting.
  • Place aluminum foil or wood blocks between furniture legs and wet carpeting.
  • Move any paintings, art objects, computers, documents, and other sensitive valuables to a dry place.
  • Do not use your household vacuum cleaner to remove water! This could cause electrical shock or damage to the device.

For more information on recovering from water damage, contact SERVPRO of Jacksonville Northwest at 904.256.4894.

Betty White Challenge – Accepted! 

1/19/2022 (Permalink)

Humane Society reps and SERVPRO personnel with puppy Thunder in front of SERVPRO car SERVPRO of Jacksonville Northwest supports the Humane Society and the Betty White Challenge.

SERVPRO of Jacksonville Northwest accepted the Betty White Challenge and were happy to be at the Jacksonville Humane Society where a big puppy at heart named Thunder, greeted us with a big smile and lots of love. JHS staff members, Hudson Melvin, Olivia Spiecker and Shaina Corday gladly tagged along to receive our food donation from Jonathan Harris and Shane Adams.  SERVPRO knows that when we are called, your pets are a part of your family and we want every pet to find a loving home.  Thunder is up for adoption and you may want to move quickly, before someone beats you to him. #bettywhitebirthdaychallenge#SERVPRO#JacksonvilleHumaneSociety#PetFriendly#heretohelp 

SERVPRO of Fernandina Beach/Jacksonville Northeast and sister franchise SERVPRO of Jacksonville Northwest regularly contribute to local causes, not limited to humane shelters and food drives, but also to Barnabas in Fernandina Beach and Yulee, various boy’s and girl’s sporting organizations, as well as the Council for Aging and The Caden Project.

Why SERVPRO? We Were Named #8 on Franchise 500 List!

1/13/2022 (Permalink)

Franchise 500 badge We are proud to be chosen as a top 10 franchise organization by Entrepreneur magazine!

SERVPRO is proud to announce it has been recognized again as one of the best overall franchise opportunities by Entrepreneur magazine’s 2022 Franchise 500, the industry’s most comprehensive franchise ranking. Evaluated on categories such as growth, financial strength and stability, and brand power, SERVPRO was named the #8 overall franchise system, and #1 in the cleaning and restoration industry for the 19th consecutive year.

To best understand and evaluate the ever-changing franchise marketplace, Entrepreneur’s editorial team researches and assesses several factors that go into the evaluation, including costs and fees, size and growth, support, brand strength, and financial strength and stability. Each franchise is given a cumulative score based on an analysis of more than 150 data points, and the 500 franchises with the highest cumulative scores become the Franchise 500 in ranking order.  

“The past year has been one of the most challenging for businesses in recent memory, which made putting together our 43rd annual Franchise 500 list more enlightening than ever,” said Entrepreneur Editor in Chief Jason Feifer. “The companies named to this year’s list showed us how being resilient, supportive and nimble can help navigate extraordinary challenges and also underscore the grit and innovation that define entrepreneurship.”

SERVPRO of Jacksonville Northwest is proud to share in this honor. Please call us at 904.256.4894 if you have water, fire or mold damage.

How to Prevent Mold Problems in North Florida and Jacksonville  

1/6/2022 (Permalink)

Mold growth on a wall in a Jacksonville home If you have mold issues call, us at 904.256.4894. We’ll make it "Like it never even happened.”

When you live in a subtropical area, like Florida, the high humidity can cause mold damage, even without leaky pipes or a damaged roof. And even in the wintertime. Here are some tips to follow to control humidity to prevent mold problems:

The level suggested for the interior relative humidity of your home is 60 percent or less to discourage mold growth. Do not guess to maintain this level. Invest in a good quality hygrometer to be certain your humidity levels are within the parameters that will discourage mold growth. 

To reduce the moisture content of the air within your home, make sure all exhaust fans are working properly in high moisture generating rooms like the kitchen, bathroom, and laundry areas. Be sure all family members are using them regularly when cooking, showering, and washing clothes.

Dryers should vent to the outdoors. Remember to run air conditioners regularly as they remove moisture from the air. Do not use vaporizers or humidifiers in the house. If all of these measures do not reduce the humidity to proper levels, invest a dehumidifier to reach and then maintain that 60 percent standard. Be sure all equipment used to reduce humidity is checked for proper drainage of the water removed from the air. Empty the water condensed as needed or set up the machine to discharge into a sink or drain.

Following these steps will help to prevent mold issues.

If you do experience mold problems, SERVPRO of Jacksonville Northwest is a Florida-Licensed Mold Remediator. Our license number is MRSR450. A licensed contractor has the training, expertise and experience required to do the job well, safely and to code.