Archived Blog Posts
The impact of a having a business close due to Unforeseen Circumstances
The pandemic has hammered small businesses across the United States — an alarming trend for an economy that’s trying to rebound from the deepest, fastest recession in U.S. history. Normally, small employers are a vital source of hiring after a recession. They account for nearly half the economy’s output and an outsize portion of new jobs.
Roughly one in five small businesses have closed, according to numerous surveys. Restaurants, bars, beauty shops and other retailers that involve face-to-face contact have been hardest hit at a time when Americans are trying to keep distance from one another.
From personal experience, watching friends and families struggle with shutting down their businesses every other week due to possible exposure has been rough. Not only does a business have to worry about the normal causes such as water/fire damage and mold, but with the current pandemic, anytime an employee gets sick; the majority of small business owners choose to close from anywhere from a day or two to a week or more.
Thankfully, SERVPRO can help with the reopening process. Our Covid clean ups involve using hospital-grade disinfectants and thoroughness; thus, reassuring the customer base and employees that all is well, and it is safe to come back.
Being Emergency Ready in Current Times
As many as 50% of businesses may never recover following a disaster, according to the latest industry research. On top of that, the current pandemic has left a lot of places uncertain of their future so any shutdown would be devastating.
By developing a SERVPRO Emergency Ready Profile for you business, you minimize business interruption by having an immediate plan of action. Knowing what to do and what to expect in advance is the key to timely mitigation and can help minimize how water, fire, and Covid-19 can affect your business.
The SERVPRO Emergency Ready Profile is a start up approach that provides the critical information needed to begin mitigation and recovery services. It is designed to serve as a quick reference of important building and contact information. By working with SERVPRO's Emergency Ready Profile, your business will receive the benefit of over 40 years of experience in reducing the impact of any natural or man-made disaster. SERVPRO is a leader in water and fire response and can help you quickly get your property back in working order.
Call SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County to get started at a no cost assessment of your facility!
HVAC Cleaning for a business...Why it is Necessary?
Why Clean your Air Ducts?
With everything that’s involved in the maintenance of a commercial building, cleaning an air duct system that’s not showing any obvious problems can seem like an unnecessary expenditure of time and money. While air duct cleaning isn’t a job you need to do every year, it’s not something you can afford to ignore entirely.
Why Air Ducts Need Cleaning
Poor indoor air quality, inefficient air filtration, and duct leaks can all result in dust entering the duct system. This dust can accumulate to the point that it starts to break off and re-enter your air. When this happens, you may notice your workspaces become dusty faster.
High humidity in the building or water leaking into the ducts provides the moisture needed for mold to develop. Mold in the ducts releases tiny spores that will end up circulating through your whole building.
Pest infestations are another reason to have your ducts cleaned. It’s not uncommon for mice, squirrels, bees, and other pests to find their way into a duct system. Once inside, they leave behind nesting material, hair, and dead insects. Particles of these are then blown out into your rooms.
If the air quality in your building is high and you use high-efficiency HVAC air filters, your ducts could stay clean for years. Even in the ideal situation, though, there’s always a chance of unexpected issues. At least once every three or four years, have your duct system professionally inspected to check if it’s due for a cleaning.
How Air Duct Cleaning Benefits You
Keeping your building’s ducts clean protects the heating and cooling system.
Improved indoor air quality — When your ducts are clean, you’ll have less dust, mold spores, pollen, and pest debris floating in your air.
Greater HVAC system efficiency — Debris in the ducts impairs airflow through your system, so the fan motor has to work harder to distribute conditioned air to your rooms. With the ducts clean, the air will flow freely and the motor will consume less energy moving it. Clean ducts deposit less dust on your air conditioner’s evaporator coil. Even a millimeter of dust on the coil reduces its efficiency, so clean ducts really pay off in summer.
Longer HVAC component lifespan — Dust and debris blowing through your ducts can find its way into your system’s fan motor and other components and cause excess wear. Keeping the ducts clean prevents this wear, helping the components last longer.
Professional Duct Cleaning Makes the Difference
Duct cleaning isn’t a job to leave up to a regular building maintenance crew armed with a few vacuums. Attempting to clean the ducts without the right tools can worsen your indoor air quality because the debris dislodged will end up floating away into your rooms. You’re also likely to miss a lot of the debris.
A professional like SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County has all the tools and knowledge to restore any HVAC system to 100%
Why Storm Damage is Devastating
Storms and Floods devastate different regions every year. Unfortunately, some of the biggest dangers caused by storms can occur after the storm has already passed. In addition to a lack of supplies and road closures, the standing flood water resulting from storms can cause serious health risks. Here are some of the most severe problems floods can bring.
Standing flood water is teeming with health risks. The CDC has a section detailing all of the possible diseases that become more likely in the event of a storm disaster, including Norovirus and the West Nile Virus. Bacterial infections and diseases become a greater possibility because flood water can infect everything it touches. This can include anything from articles of clothing to the toys that children play with. For this reason, it is incredibly important not to drink or eat anything that has been contaminated by standing flood water, and to always wash hands as often as possible- especially before meals. In addition, open wounds pose a far greater risk of becoming infected as a result of storm waters. If at all possible, keep open wounds out of the water or cover with waterproof bandages.
Disease isn't the only invisible hazard that can exist within standing water. Murky water can conceal dangerous insects or even threatening animals beneath the surface. Much of this depends on the location of the storm, but it's not unheard of for alligators to make use of a new habitat resulting from a storm. In addition, much of the physical damage caused by a storm is still present in the water. This can include broken glass or sharp metal which might be impossible to see before it causes injury. On top of that, storms frequently cause damage to power lines. These can lead to a risk of electrocution in standing water.
It's Cold Outside....Why are House Fires starting?
It's January in Wisconsin....A question we are asked about a lot is "Isn't it too cold for fires to begin?". Well, there are other things besides heat that attribute to future disasters. Listed Below are the most common causes:
Heating is the second leading cause of US home fires and home fire injuries and third leading cause of home fire deaths. December, January and February are the peak months for heating fires. Space heaters are the type of equipment most often involved in home heating equipment fires, accounting for more than two of every five fires (44%), as well as the vast majority of deaths and injuries in home fires caused by heating equipment.
Often called the invisible killer, carbon monoxide (CO) is an odorless, colorless gas created when fuels such as gasoline, wood, coal, propane, etc. do not burn completely. In the home, heating and cooking equipment that burn fuel are potential sources of CO. Carbon monoxide incidents are more common during the winter months, and in residential properties.
Most of the U.S. is at risk for winter storms, which can cause dangerous and sometimes life-threatening conditions. Blinding wind-driven snow, extreme cold, icy road conditions, downed trees and power lines can all wreak havoc on our daily schedules. Home fires occur more in the winter than in any other season, and heating equipment is involved in one of every six reported home fires, and one in every five home fire deaths.
Portable generators are useful during power outages, however, many homeowners are unaware that the improper use of portable generators can be risky. The most common dangers associated with portable generators are carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning, electrical shock or electrocution, and fire hazards. According to a 2013 Consumer Product Safety Commission report, half of the generator-related deaths happened in the four coldest months of the year, November through February, and portable generators were involved in the majority of carbon monoxide deaths involving engine-driven tools.
December is the peak time of year for home candle fires; the top two days for home candle fires are Christmas and Christmas Eve. Each year between 2013-2017, an average of 7,900 home candle fires were reported each year.
Electrical home fires are a leading cause of home fires in the U.S. Roughly half of all home electrical fires involved electrical distribution or lighting equipment, while nearly another half involved other known types of equipment like washer or dryer fans, and portable or stationary space heaters. More statistics on electrical fires.
Assessing Damage and the Decision Making Afterwards
Typically, when dealing with fire damage, it’s the smoke that leads to the most contamination. Smoke contains methane, carbon monoxide, benzene, sulfur dioxide, formaldehyde, formic acid, acetic acid, and traces of heavy metals. This is quite a toxic combination of chemicals, which can lead to severe health complications.
Unfortunately, smoke and soot residue can travel through almost any opening, then settle on every surface in the house. You might even find smoke contamination in a room unaffected by the fire.
Some other ways which smoke can damage your Hawaii home include:
- Discoloration – After the fire, the smoke damage will immediately become visible on the walls, ceilings, and hard surfaces. You’ll notice stains and discoloration, including a yellowing effect that is tough to remove.
- Odor – Many surfaces within your home, especially fabric or furniture, will contain a smoky odor after a fire. Smoke produces carbon in the air, which turns into soot. These particles then settle into the fabrics of your carpet, clothing, and furniture.
- Electrical – A little-known aspect of smoke damage is damage to the electrical system. The smoke damage can compromise wiring, cords, switches, fuses, and breaker boxes.
Removing both smoke and soot requires advanced restoration equipment and expertise. You are likely not equipped or trained to handle the situation.
Hence, here at SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County... We are one call away from making things "Like it never even happened."
Maintaining a business - Duct Cleaning
Your HVAC unit has to do with cooling and heating your Business. Maintenance for your HVAC system is essential if you want your unit to run correctly for a substantial amount of time. Cleaning your HVAC system also entails duct maintenance as well.
Cleaning the ducts and vents means that they will be cleaning separate elements in the HVAC unit. It is important to clean multiple areas in the unit because it is unknown what lurks in your ducts. So, when turning on the air conditioning unit, those who have allergies may react from the dust, dander, or mold in the unit.
There are many advantages of cleaning your ducts/ HVAC unit. One benefit is having a more efficient system which will result in lower utility bills. Another benefit is having a healthier working environment. Keeping up with the system will also keep up the longevity of the unit, just like a “tune up” with a vehicle would improve its life span.
So a fire happens.....what next?
When a fire starts inside your home, it is never a pleasant experience. Fires not only threaten the safety of you and your family, but can also be costly to repair. The heat, flames, and smoke produced by a fire can cause extensive damage to your home.
Whether the fire is small or large, the best choice would be to have the professionals come in and assess the situation. SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County is IICRC certified and have experience with different types of fire scenarios.
Both the heat and smoke created by a blaze causes several types of damage to your home. Flames can burn content and building materials inside the home. Smoke spreads throughout the structure leaving behind soot and foul odors. Our professional technicians at SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County are taught how to mitigate fire damage by putting each case into a category based on the severity of the damage.
In fire damage situations, there are three main types of severity. Putting each damage scenario into a certain level of severity helps our specialists know what types of methods to use when mitigating the problem. The three levels are minor, medium and major fire damage.
With our fair assessments and knowledge/background, calling SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County is always the right thing to do.
Service Professionals at all times
We are always ready!
When you choose SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County to handle your restoration needs, you’re choosing a company with strong core values and a commitment to a common vision of growth and improvement.
Here at SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County, we strive to set the standard for premier cleaning and restoration companies by unifying our team with extensive training. As we continue to grow and prove our capabilities to our community in the greater Milwaukee area, we work to ensure that the standards we have set for our success carries through to every employee, through detailed and regular training.
Our mission is to develop a family of dedicated professionals who strive towards unparalleled quality, constant growth and transparent communication. We believe we can accomplish this mission through training, attention to detail, and consistent adherence to our values. They are as follows:
We strive to set a higher standard of integrity through excellent customer service, workmanship and teamwork.
We create a happy environment where everyone can excel and realize their full potential through teamwork, trust, mutual respect and prosperity.
We desire for continuous personal and professional growth to achieve success.
Open and transparent communication throughout all levels of the business.
Identify and Develop Quality Leaders.
Identify quality leaders through education, training, opportunity, technology and encouragement.
Fresh Air brought to you by Ozone!
Ozone for the Win!
If you have ever had a fire on your property and had SERVPRO come out to restore, you will know what an ozone generator is. For those who have not, an ozone generator is a machine that charges the air around it creating O3 out of the O2 molecules we breathe.
What We Use Ozone For
The primary function that we use an ozone generator for is the eliminate odors, especially odors caused by fires. We can use this technique of odor removal in many different cases such as, clothing, furniture, and entire rooms no matter the size. While the odor removal works great, there is a downside to using ozone in excess.
Precautions to Ozone
As stated earlier, ozone is different from the air we breathe. This reaction makes O3 poisonous if it is ingested in excess. This is why we close off the area that is being deodorized during the process. You can trust that we take every precaution necessary to keep our customers and employees safe.
By responding quickly, recommending a solution and implementing it. The odors that are causing a disturbance will be gone and it will be "Like it never even happened."
Let us Help
What it looks like to have a Water Problem
Sometimes water damage and its source are easy to identify – for example when a pipe bursts or a major storm causes flooding. But sometimes the problem can be more subtle…and that can actually lead to more damage over the long-term if you don’t recognize a problem before it becomes a potential disaster.
If you’re concerned there may be a water problem in your home or business, here are 5 common but not-so-obvious signs to look out for:
If you see pale yellow or brown stains on your ceilings, wall, or floors, that may indicate the presence of a slow but steady leak.
Many times, water stains will form directly under the water source. However, sometimes water will run along wire, pipes or other materials and then drip and cause stains far from the source. Make sure you figure out the cause of the water damage you see.
Mold grows where there is sufficient wetness for it to thrive, so if you have a mold problem, there’s a water problem.
Sometimes materials in your home will become mold infested if they’ve become wet and have never been able to dry sufficiently. This can happen to fabric, wood, insulation, and perhaps even your floors, ceilings, or walls.
A musty smell can be one of the first signs of a water problem, even if you can’t yet see any leaks.
Be on the lookout for any sudden changes in odor. Take note if it gets worse after a rainstorm or while you’re taking a shower or running the dishwasher.
Weak Wall, Floors, or Ceilings
Water will weaken your building materials. You might notice that your walls are becoming more soft or “spongey”, your floors might be bowing, there may be a crack in your ceiling or a bubble in your wall paper.
A sudden large leak might cause a major, obvious problem, but if the leak is slow these issues might come on gradually over weeks or months. The sooner you notice, the sooner you can address the root cause.
Higher Utility Bills
If you have a sudden and unexpected surge in your utility bill, that might be an indication of a water problem.
While slight fluctuations month to month are normal, be on the lookout for a sudden rise in the water bill, especially if there’s no corresponding increase in your sewer rates. If there isn’t a reason you can think of why your water bill might be high this month, it may be that there’s a water damage issue.
Here at SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County, we know just how disastrous water damage can be to a home or business. That’s why we’re passionate about helping the people in this community do what they can to prevent water damage before it becomes a major issue.
But IF you have water damage – even just minor damage – SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County can help you identify and address the source of the problem and ensure that it won’t turn into an expensive catastrophe for your home or business.
Why Choose Us
Employees showing up and fully prepared
f you’re in need of disaster repair SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County team is here to help. Each and every one of our professionals are highly trained in property restoration to better serve our community. From initial and ongoing corporate training to regular e-training and continuing education classes, you can trust that your SERVPRO Professionals have the knowledge and experience to handle your disaster, no matter the size.
The Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) is the governing body that sets the standards for the cleaning and restoration industries. All members of the SERVPRO team study IICRC standards and best practices to know how to restore damaged properties correctly. The certifications include:
Applied Microbial Remediation Technician (AMRT): This course covers mold and sewage remediation techniques and how to perform the proper procedures in the field to keep all workers and occupants safe.
Applied Structural Drying Technician (ASD): Through this training, technicians learn how to dry water-damaged structures safely and efficiently.
Carpet Cleaning Technician (CCT): This course covers pre-inspection, fabric identification, cleaning chemicals and equipment, and proper cleaning techniques.
Fire and Smoke Restoration Technician (FSRT): Through this training, technicians learn about smoke and fire damage, job planning, equipment, odor concepts, and practical cleaning procedures in fire and smoke settings.
Odor Control Technician (OCT): This course covers odor control, odor causes, and deodorization techniques.
Upholstery and Fabric Cleaning Technician (UFT): Throughout this training, technicians go over fiber identifications and upholstery cleaning methods.
Water Damage Restoration Technician (WRT): During this course, trainees learn about the concepts of water damage, its effects in different settings, and procedures to deal with water losses, sewer backflows, and contamination.
At SERVPRO, we understand that having the knowledge and training to handle an array of damages and disasters is crucial to meeting and exceeding the needs of our customers when the restoration is required. Our extensive SERVPRO training program includes the following:
- IICRC Training
- Employee Certification Training: This voluntary, self-paced program allows our professionals to learn more about crew training, fire restoration, carpet and upholstery cleaning, and mold mitigation.
- Initial Franchise Training: This 15-day hands-on course at our training facility allows new franchise owners to master topics such as fire restoration and mold mitigation.
- e-Learnings: Through this web-based training, team members can stay up-to-date on industry standards and professional quality.
- Continuing Education Classes: These programs are designed for insurance agents, adjusters, real estate professionals, and franchise staff to learn more about emergency mitigation.
As your Milwaukee County disaster repair professionals, you can trust that we have the equipment and personnel to handle your cleanup and restoration needs. Often people will try to tackle their flood, mold, or fire issues without realizing that they will most likely do more harm than good without the appropriate technology and safety procedures. When you work with SERVPRO, you can trust that our services will restore your damaged property, while also keeping you, your family, and your belongings safe. Regardless of the cause or source, our team can handle any sized disaster.
Since 1967, SERVPRO has been changing the restoration and mitigation industry. To better serve our customers, SERVPRO created the National Training Center in 1992 to teach restoration and mitigation skills to franchise owners and insurance industry employees. Through professional training, our team is uniquely positioned and qualified to help when disaster strikes. Not only is our team trained in the most extensive performance guidelines in the industry, but we're also the ones who created them.
As a homeowner, having a certified team completing your damage restoration ensures that your home is safe and sound for you and your family. From your carpet to your ceiling and everywhere in between, our team has the expertise and tools so that you don’t have to worry about safety when playing with the kids on your living room carpet or preparing dinner on your kitchen counters. Whether it’s mold or fire that affects your home, our team will restore each and every piece to its pre-damage glory.
To learn more about our services, training, certifications, or processes, contact your Southeastern Milwaukee County disaster restoration professionals today!
Why Has My Sump Pump Failed and What Can I Do About It?
Logo shot with aerial view background
It’s a sight a homeowner never wants to experience: a basement floor covered in several inches of water and the eerie silence of an idle sump pump. A failing sump pump is a wet and often expensive mess. But these telltale signs can help you prevent flooding and preserve your property.
How a Sump Pump Works
A sump pump is a pump that’s installed in the lowest part of a basement or crawlspace. As its name implies, a sump pump’s job is to pump water in order to help the area under the building stay dry and prevent it from flooding. Most sump pumps are installed in specially constructed pits. When water collects in these pits, it’s pumped out and away from the building.
Given this important “stay-dry” job, it’s obvious that a failing sump pump often leads to a flooded basement and expensive water damage. Unfortunately, even less than an inch of standing water on your basement floor can quickly transform into property damage and a mold problem.
Know the Signs, Spare Your Property
The SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County staff shares their tips about what causes sump pump failure and what you can do to prevent or minimize water damage:
- The sump pump switch is stuck in place. A stuck switch is one of the most common reasons why a sump pump fails. There are several different types of sump float switches—vertical and tethered floats are most common. Vertical floats are often more reliable, as tethered floats have a habit of getting stuck on the side walls of the sump pit. Debris in the pit is the main reason why floats get stuck. You can check the float by shutting the sump pump’s power OFF and removing any debris in the pit.
- The power is out. Just like a dishwasher or washing machine, if your sump pump has no power source, it’s not going to work. In the case of a severe storm, a power outage can lead to a flooded basement quickly. That’s why it may be wise to invest in a high quality battery back-up sump pump. When charged properly, this battery backup system operates a separate pump linked to the discharge pipe for hours of protection until your power is restored. Some backup pumps even monitor the battery’s condition and alert you when it needs to be replaced.
- Your sump pump is not the right size. Much like a water heater, there are different sum pumps for different performance demands. It’s best to consult with a plumbing professional to make sure your sump pump is the proper horsepower to keep up with your home’s or business’ flow of water.
- Your sump pump is aging and needs replacement. Sump pumps are not built to last forever. In fact, it’s recommended that sump pumps are replaced every five to seven years to ensure they’re operating effectively and keeping your property dry.
- The discharge pipe is frozen. Frozen pipes throughout homes are a particular concern given our harsh Wisconsin winters. With regards to a sump pump, the discharge pipe is an issue if it’s not installed and pitched properly. This then causes water to collect, freeze, and eventually block it from flowing.
From Sump Pumps to Storm Damage, Rely on Our Expertise
Basement flooding from sump pump failure is serious—that’s why your local SERVPRO experts are here when you need us. Call us 24/7 at 414-421-3500. Or depend on us for other repair, restoration, and cleaning services for your home or business.
How to Prevent Frozen Pipes and Property Damage
SERVPRO logo on green background
One thing you can count on every year in Wisconsin? Frigid winter weather in some form or another. That’s why it helps to have these tips handy to prevent frozen pipes in your home or business when outdoor temps plummet:
- When you know below-freezing temperatures are forecasted, allow water to run in all the sinks at a slow, constant drip. Just a trickle is enough to keep the water moving through the pipes and prevent them from freezing.
- Open up the cabinet doors in your bathroom vanities and under your kitchen sink. This allows heat from the home to circulate and keep the pipes warm.
- Keep your house at a warm, consistent temperature during the day and night.
- If you leave home for extended periods of time, keep your thermostat to at least 55 degrees Fahrenheit.
- To keep garage pipes from freezing, make sure your garage door stays closed.
- If your pipes do freeze, use a hair dryer, heat lamp, or heat gun to thaw them. Then run hot water from your faucet for a couple minutes to keep the pipes warm.
Frozen Pipe Damage? Call SERVPRO Immediately.
When pipes freeze in your home or business, it could lead to a burst pipe and eventual water damage. Trust your local SERVPRO staff here in Southeast Milwaukee County to help get your home or business back to normal. Contact us anytime at 414.421.3500 for help in an emergency, or to learn about our other repair, restoration, and cleaning services.
Why You Should Have A Fire Escape Plan For Your Family
SERVPRO we are here to help
Fail to plan , plan to fail. That saying can annoy some of us, especially if we prefer to live life in the moment. But when it comes to emergencies like fire, planning is non-negotiable—you need to know what to do ahead of time to keep everyone safe. That starts with having a fire escape plan.
Fire can spread rapidly throughout your home—within as little as two minutes after a smoke alarm detects it. A fire escape plan gives you and your family a life-saving strategy to follow in a fire emergency. These specific steps will help you get started:
Make a map of your home.
Create a “blueprint” of your home, then label all the doors, windows, and every room in your house. Plan at least two escape routes from every room—remember to account for family members’ disabilities and create alternative escape routes as necessary.
Determine where you’ll meet if there’s a fire in your home.
Designate a family meeting spot when a fire occurs. Since you could be separated from other family members during a fire, it’s important to regroup and get a headcount after escaping from your burning home.
Make sure everyone can call 9-1-1.
No matter if you have young children, teach them as soon as they’ll understand to dial 9-1-1 when a fire happens. This is so critical, especially if no adults are home during a fire.
Do an at-home fire drill.
Practice your fire escape plan by walking with your family from room to room. Talk through your escape instructions. If it’s easy and safe, practice escaping. Do your own fire drill at home by sounding off your fire alarm to get your family in the right mindset for leaving the house.
Don’t forget about STOP-DROP-ROLL.
Once you have your fire escape plan in place, make sure everyone in your family knows how to “stop, drop, and roll” if they catch fire. Also, train your family members to check the doors for heat to see if they should open them or not once the fire alarm sounds. It’s important, too, to test your smoke detectors monthly, and change the batteries one to two times per year.
After a Fire, Rely on Us for Restoration
Should a fire happen at your home or business, dial 9-1-1 immediately. After the fire has been safely extinguished, SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County is your source for fire damage repair and restoration. In addition to repairing and restoring anything damaged by heat and flames, our trained team can remove all the soot, ash, and smoke from the fire as well as deodorizes your property. Call 414-421-3500—we’re available any time, any day you need us.
Why Call a Professional for Water Damage?
SERVPRO team portrait in front of building
Water damage. These two words can carry some serious consequences in terms of health issues and property destruction. That’s because depending on the situation, the extent of water damage can be hard to identify in your home or business. The best way to get answers and save your property or building’s integrity from future damage is to consult a professional.
Suspecting Water Damage in Your Residential or Commercial Property
Has a water stain appeared on your ceiling? Or have you noticed another sign that you think may indicate water damage? Before you call a professional, it’s a good idea to investigate the suspected water damage on your own. In fact, get in the habit of inspecting your home carefully every few months for signs of water damage—flaking or peeling paint; water stains on the walls or ceiling; puddles or moist spots on floors or under sinks/vanities; and bowed walls. Mold or dried water stain spots are also telltale signs that water damage is or was present and may not have been correctly addressed. The more you see these signs typically means the more severe the damage.
After taking note of any and all signs of suspected water damage, it’s time to call a professional to assess what you’ve noticed as well as pick up on any others that you may have missed. Better to be safe than sorry when it comes to water damage—calling a professional is a wise choice.
When Water Damage is Evident
Are there obvious signs of water damage on your property? This could include big stains in the ceiling or walls; mold growth along walls, in basements, or under sink/vanity areas; or compromised structural integrity. When water damage is evident, you should call a professional as soon as possible to survey the damage and advise you on next steps. In some cases if the water damage is extensive enough, it may not be safe for you to remain in the building.
Restore Your Property from Water Damage and So Much More
Whether it’s subtle or obvious, water damage can have a lasting negative impact on your residential or commercial property. But with our knowledge, equipment and experience, we can help bring the value back to your property—contact SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County at 414.421.3500 around the clock, every day. Or rely on us for other cleaning and restoration services, such as storm damage, fire restoration, and mold remediation.
What to Do After Your Basement Floods
image of the SERVPRO logo
On the list of unwanted home-damaging events, a flooded basement is most certainly at the top. Flooding happens when you least expect it, and is a stressful experience if you don’t know where to turn or who to call. That’s why you should read these helpful tips from your local SERVPRO team…
Stay out of your flooded basement.
Basements flood first because of their low-level, underground nature. Of course your instincts may tell you to start bailing out buckets of water—don’t. The safest thing to do is not enter your basement until you call a professional water restoration company AND an electrician to come and assess the aftermath. Electricity and water are a dangerous combination; you need to keep yourself and your loved ones safe by making sure a professional properly deals with the situation beforehand. Turn off your circuit breaker only if it’s outside of the basement, on the ground level or upper level of your home.
Once it’s safe, remove excess flood water.
Once the electricity is turned off, it may be safe to enter your flooded basement and start bailing out water. Do this as soon as possible to mitigate the damage. Make sure your sump is working properly to help remove the water, or that it’s not malfunctioning and causing flooding in the first place. If flooding isn’t that extensive, use buckets, mops, and towels to soak up the water.
Take photos, then remove and air out damp objects.
Before you start cleaning, take photos of your flooded basement and damaged property for filing your insurance claim. In as little as 48 hours, mold can grow on anything damp in your flooded basement. That’s why after taking photos it’s important to remove any damp objects and leave them in an area to dry out. If you have a finished basement, rip out any wet carpet and padding underneath it. Unfortunately but realistically, your carpet will not be salvageable.
Dry the flooded basement area.
As mentioned earlier, you want to dry the area out to prevent mold growth and further damage. If you don’t own them, rent some fans and a shop vacuum from your local hardware or home improvement store to dry the basement area as quickly as possible. Then have a professional inspect the area make any necessary repair recommendations as well as prevent future mold growth. It may also be wise to buy a dehumidifier to remove excess moisture and allow your basement to dry faster.
When flooding happens, we’ll be there immediately.
May flooding never happen in your home or business. But if it does, know that SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County has the team, tools, and timeliness you need in an emergency. We’re here to serve you 24/7 at 414-421-3500. When it’s less urgent, we’re also here for any cleaning or damage restoration services you need.
Help—My Appliance is Leaking! Take These Immediate Steps
SERVPRO is ready to help with any challenge
You wake up, stumble in the kitchen to make your coffee, and see it…Water pooling under your sink. Panic sets in. Few people think about what to do immediately after an appliance is leaking. That’s why the experts at SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County share these steps you can take as soon as you spot the leak.
- Shut off the water source for that appliance.
The sooner you stop the water, the better in terms of damage and repair costs. Most times you’ll find the main water shut-off valves in your basement.
- Determine where the water is coming from.
There are typically three main sources for most water leakage problems: a drain line, a supply line, or a burst pipe. Leaks in drain lines happen when a drain isn’t properly working. Whether a drain leak is fast or slow, it can cause bacteria to grow in the line. A leak in your supply line is coming from that pipe that brings water to your appliance. When you spot a burst pipe, the best thing to do is put a bucket underneath it to catch any leaking water.
- Unplug any electronics near the leaking appliance.
As you know, water and electricity are a dangerous mix. Be sure to shut off and unplug any electronics near the leak. Your safety is paramount: If the leak seems excessive, turn off your home’s circuit breaker, and call your local electrician, as well as the water damage restoration professionals to assess the situation and return your home back to normal.
- Take photos for your home insurance claims.
It’s important to take photos of the leak and the subsequent water damage for insurance purposes, especially if the damage is extensive. Do this before cleaning up any of the mess so that you have accurate documentation of the leak and the property damage.
- Call the professionals to repair the water leak and damage.
You can attempt to identify the water leak type and resolve it yourself, but that may not be the best long-term solution. A wiser investment is to call the local plumbing professional who can fix your leak and appliance properly. If there is damage as a result of the leak, it’s also best to contact your local restoration company, too.
When Leaks Happen, Call SERVPRO 24/7
Don’t deal with the aftermath of water damage from a leaking appliance alone—trust a team of technicians who are equipped to help you around the clock, even on holidays. That team is your trusted neighborhood SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County. Fellow residents and businesses also rely on us beyond water damage restoration—we do everything form air duct cleaning and disinfecting to storm damage and mold remediation. Call 414-421-3500, or contact us online.
Your Source for Emergency Relief When a Home Disaster Hits
They’re scenes no one wants to come home to: Rivers on your kitchen floor from a leaky dishwasher. An inch of water in your basement after a torrential downpour. A fallen tree that landed on your garage after a severe storm. But there’s one source that can rescue you from all these scenarios—SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County. Regardless of the disaster or the time it happens, our trained restoration pros have the equipment and know-how to help you 24/7.
Disaster never strikes on schedule—SERVPRO is ready around the clock.
Everyone knows that a disaster wouldn’t be a disaster if we knew when it was coming. Middle of the night, while on vacation, late morning while everyone is away at school and/or work…disasters like a tornado or flash flood strike when we least expect them.
Luckily, your neighborhood SERVPRO team is just a call away to fight your next emergency restoration battle. Whether you’re dealing with flooding, water damage, fire, mold, or smoke, SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County is available to you 24/7 with the technicians and advanced technology to return your property back to its original state.
While disaster restoration jobs may take time, our emergency response doesn’t make you wait. Contact us 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, including holidays, and we’ll be there. Expect an immediate response time from us, day or night, because we pride ourselves in our ability to assist you when you need us most.
At SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County, we respond to disaster scenarios immediately because it enables us to minimize the damage that occurs and reduce your restoration and repair costs. Water can be particularly invasive, and precious minutes can accumulate higher costs and more extensive damage if it’s not addressed from the onset.
We are staffed and equipped to respond to emergencies on any size scale at both residential and commercial properties. Even if you have an inkling of an emergency on your hands, and our disaster restoration team will be there before you know it. As they say, it’s always better to be safe than sorry. Simply call 414-421-3500 and we’ll be on our way.
SERVPRO is there for non-emergencies, too.
There are times when cleaning and restoration is necessary but not an urgent response to a disaster situation. That’s why homes and businesses throughout Southeast Milwaukee County trust SERVPRO for everything from cleaning and sanitizing to fire damage and mold remediation. Contact us for a complimentary consultation and estimate—we look forward to serving you.
What You Can Do About the Damaging Effects of Heavy Rainfall
SERVPRO here to help with water damage
Rain, rain, go away…that could never be a more true mantra when heavy rains fall. While water damage is typically associated with situations like flooding or plumbing malfunctions, heavy rain can bring its own set of challenges when it comes to household water damage.
While any moisture level can be damaging, heavy rain is considered rainfall at more than 0.3 inches per hour. This persistent rate can work its way into much smaller vulnerabilities in your home. To help you better prepare and avoid water damage, consider how rapid rainfall rates can cause these issues...
Household Water Damage from Heavy Rains
- Leaky windows and doors. Windows and doors should be sealed against Mother Nature’s elements, but their weatherproofing can age and deteriorate over time. Water can find its way into minuscule cracks and cause damage during a heavy rainfall.
- Inadequate foundation drainage. Heavy rains can build up against the base of your home and cause leaks in your basement or crawl spaces. This can be especially common in homes at the bottom of a hill without adequate drainage around the foundation.
- Vulnerable chimneys and skylights. Chimneys and skylights tend to be more vulnerable to heavy rains. Though they are attractive home features, seals where they meet the roof can weaken over time and be susceptible to leaking when rainfall is heavy.
- Seeping water around the roof. Roof leaks are a leading consequence of heavy rainfall that can sneak up suddenly. Something as minor as a missing shingle or weak spot can let unwanted rainwater seep in.
- Clogged gutters. Gutters clogged with debris can’t properly drain rainwater, which means leaks from puddles as the water is left standing against the roofline. This is why clogged gutters can cause significant home damage after heavy rains.
- Malfunctioning sump pumps. Regular maintenance is critical to homes with sump pump systems. If issues go undetected, the pump system can get overwhelmed and cannot effectively move water away from the home.
Rain + Water Damage = Mold
The unfortunate result of heavy rains is water damage. And the unfortunate result of water damage in homes is a possibility of mold growth. In fact, mold can begin growing in as little as 48 hours after water damage has occurred. That’s why it’s important to stay safe and get excess water cleaned up professionally to minimize the chance of mold growth. Our Team at SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County is ready at a moment’s notice to help with any of your water mitigation emergencies—simply call 414-421-3500.
Count on SERVPRO in Dry Conditions, Too
Rainfall and other causes of water damage aren’t the only threats to your home or business. Thankfully residents and businesses throughout Southeast Milwaukee County rely on our SERVPRO team for everything from air duct cleaning and fire damage restoration to commercial cleaning and home disinfecting. Discover what we can do for you—contact us for a complimentary consultation and estimate today!
What Can You Do About Mold and Mildew?
Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned window sticker
You can’t see them, even when magnified up to 400 times. Under normal conditions indoors, you inhale up to 10,000 of them per minute. But under excessively humid conditions, they can cause health effects to humans and animals…we’re talking about mold and mildew. How can you keep mold and mildew at bay to maximize indoor air quality in your home or business?
What’s the difference between mold and mildew?
Mildew is a surface fungi that grows in green-white colored patches (think long-forgotten leftovers in a refrigerator). Mildew grows on top of moist areas, and can easily be treated with a store-bought cleaner and scrub brush.
Mold is a different story. Once black or green patches of mold are detected, it means there is a larger infestation of this otherwise microscopic organism. Often you hear the term black mold, which can produce allergens and irritants in affected areas of buildings. Black mold is not toxic, but it can cause health effects. Because mold thrives in damp environments, water damage or excessive humidity must be addressed to prevent mold from regrowing.
How can I prevent indoor mold and mildew issues?
The most effective way to control mold and mildew indoors is to control your humidity levels. Ideally, an indoor humidity level of 30–50% will prevent mold and mildew growth, and promote the best possible indoor air quality. Water damage is another main source of mold growth. In fact, mold grows sin homes or businesses that have some sort of water damage within as little as 48 hours.
The EPA is a comprehensive source that offers are several ways you can prevent mold and mildew growth in your home. But for mold growth resulting from water damage, it’s best to consider hiring a professional to remediate mold and properly restore your property. In the meantime, there are mold damage emergency tips to practice before expert help arrives.
What’s the difference between mold removal and mold remediation?
Bottom line: Mold spores exist because they are a vital part of our ecosystem. But excessive indoor mold and mildew growth is not part of that eco-equation. This is an important point to note when companies guarantee that they “remove mold.” Microscopic mold spores are nearly everywhere, so removing them from inside a home or business is impossible.
Mold remediation, on the other hand, is the proper way that professionals eliminate visible mold growth and bring mold levels down to normal, healthy levels. With proper cleaning techniques, your home or business can be restored and refreshed for the long term.
Breathe Better Indoor Air with SERVPRO
Mold and mildew growth can happen year-round, so it’s good to know you can depend on our Southeast Milwaukee SERVPRO team 24/7. In fact, residents and businesses in your neighborhood rely on us for mold remediation, water damage restoration, fire restoration, and much more. Contact us for a complimentary consultation, or when you need us in an emergency.
The Challenge of Keeping Your Business COVID Clean
Southeast Milwaukee County Restoration Experts
Cleaning enough to meet COVID requirements is a monumental task. Beyond keeping workspaces and public spaces disinfected, every “touch” between customers, business owners, and employees must be sanitized to maximize disease prevention.
There are several cleaning products that can be used against COVID-19, such as ready-to-use sprays and disinfecting wipes. But with the colder weather and influenza season upon us, these cleaning and disinfecting products will be in higher demand, and could even reach the scarcity level that toilet paper did in March 2020 (a memory we’d all like to forget).
Supplying all the products you need and implementing your daily COVID cleanliness plan leaves you little time for other aspect for your business, especially for deep-cleaning. How can you overcome the constant challenge of keeping your business clean? Hire a commercial cleaning professional with specialized training and products. Even everyday janitorial services won’t yield the level of deep cleaning your business needs to keep COVID and other viruses and bacteria at bay.
Stay Safe and Clean with the SERVPRO Team
In addition to commercial cleaning to meet stringent COVID requirements, Greater Milwaukee businesses trust SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County for a whole host of services such as air duct & HVAC cleaning, water damage, mold removal, and fire restoration. Contact our Southeast Milwaukee County location for 24-hour service, and a free consultation and estimate.
Back to School
School days bring congestion: School buses are picking up their passengers, kids on bikes are hurrying to get to school before the bell rings, harried parents are trying to drop their kids off before work.
It's never more important for drivers to slow down and pay attention than when kids are present - especially before and after school.
According to research by the National Safety Council, most children seriously injured in a Bus/Car accident are between 4-7 years old and are walking.
We need to watch for them and remember to avoid blocking the crosswalk when stopped at a red light. Watch for those flashing lights that indicate a heavy flow of pedestrians crossing the crosswalk or intersection.
Be alert; children often are unpredictable, and they tend to ignore hazards and take risks.
Emergency Ready Profile
A guide to help you get back into your building after a disaster.
The BEST way to reduce business interruption following a disaster is to plan for it NOW.
As many as 50% of businesses may never recover following a disaster, according to the latest industry research. Of the businesses that survive, the overwhelming majority of them had a preparedness plan in place. Pre-planning can serve as an insuranc epolicy aimed at peach of mind.
By developing a SERVPRO Emergency Ready Profile for you business, you minimize business interruption by having an immediate plan of action. Knowing what to do and what to expect in advance is the key to timely mitigation and can help minimize how water and fire damage can affect your business.
The SERVPRO Emergency Ready Profile is a start up approach that provides the critical information needed to begin mitigation and recovery services. It is designed to serve as a quick reference of important building and contact information. By working with SERVPRO's Emergency Ready Profile, your business will receive the benefit of over 40 years of experience in reducing the impact of any natural or man-made disaster. SERVPRO is a leader in water and fire response and can help you quickly get your property back in working order.
Call SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County to get started at a no cost assessment of your facility!
My dishwasher leaked all over my hardwood floors
Cupping hardwood floors due to water damage
It happens. Your dishwasher leaks all over your beautiful hardwood floors and not they are starting to cup. The first thought is that you will need to pull them up and replace them - not necessarily.
Give SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County a call - we have had great success in drawing out the moisture in hardwood floors allowing them to be sanded and refinished Much more economical over replacement.
How do we do this? We use our Injectidry Mat System that uses the power of a high-pressure blower to draw the moisture right through the surface of the floor. We create containment and pump dehumidified air into the containment. It takes between 5-10 days to accomplish dependent on how long the wood was saturated before we began, but the results are amazing.
So, before you start ripping out that beautiful hardwood, give us a call!
SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County "Like it never even happened"
Your Safety is Most Important!
Have two ways out!
Did you know that if a fire starts in your home you may have as little as two minutes to escape? During a fire, early warning from a working smoke alarm plus a fire escape plan that has been practiced regularly can save lives.
Top Tips for Fire Safety
- Install smoke alarms on every level of your home, inside bedrooms and outside sleeping areas.
- Test smoke alarms every month. If they're not working, change the batteries.
- Talk with family members about a fire escape plan and practice the plan twice a year.
- If a fire occurs in your home, GET OUT, STAY OUT and CALL FOR HELP. Never go back inside for anything or anyone.
4 Steps to take immediately after a home fire:
- Calk 9-1-1. Give first aid where needed.
- Let friends and family know you're safe
- People and animals that are seriously injured or burned should be transported to professional medical or veterniary help immediately.
- Stay out of fire-damage homes until local fire authorities say it is safe to re-enter.
One the fire department has released the site, call SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County to come in an make it "Like it never even happened."
Mold vs Mildew
mold vs mildew
Most people lump mold and mildew together as the same thing. But these fungi do have several key difference that will be helpful to know when you encounter them.
Both mold and mildew are members of the fungi kingdom. They grow in moist or humid areas, like bathrooms and attics and oftentimes gives off a strong musty odor as they grow. Mold and mildew both produce and emit spores to reproduce and feed on organic materials.
Mildew is a surface fungi that can easily be identified as a patch of gray or even white fungus that is lying on the surface of a moist area.
Mildew is usually easily treated with a store bought cleaner, a scrubbing brush and some good old fashioned elbow grease.
Mildew has no known beneficial uses.
Mold, on the other hand, can be black or green and is often the result of a much larger infestation.
Some molds, like Penicillium, are used in the production of food and pharmaceutical drugs.
Make sure it's safe
Before entering a building where flood damage may have occurred, make sure it's safe: check for electrical hazards and structural damage, and use proper protective gear like boots, gloves and respirators.
Then follow these tips:
- Act quickly. the severity of damage escalates the longer water sits and building materials stay wet, so time is of the essence. Mold will grow within 48-72 hours, so aim to start removing water and drying the environment within 48 hours.
- Have professionals, like SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County on hand to call and understand your insurance policy.
- Access damage to items and materials along with the type of water absorbed by items, such as rainwater, water from broke pipes, contaminated river water or bacteria-filled sewage.
- Conduct a thorough cleaning. SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County has the equipment and proper cleaning chemicals to clean and sanitize your home as well as the drying equipment to properly dry your home.
Be Safe this Halloween!
Halloween is a fun and spooky, time of year for kids of all ages. Make trick or treating safe for the little ones with a few easy safety tips:
- If your child is wearing a mask, make sure the eye holes are large enough so he or she can see out.
- When choosing a costume, stay away from long trailing fabric that could result in your child tripping.
- Keep dried flowers and cornstalks away from open flames and other heat sources like light bulbs and heaters.
- Use a battery operated candle or glow stick in jack-o-lanterns.
- If you choose to use candles inside your jack-o-lanterns, keep them well away from anything that can burn and far enough out of the way of trick-or-treaters, doorsteps, walkways etc.
- Make sure all smoke alarms in the home are working.
According to NFPA, decorations are the first thing to ignite in 900 reported home fires each year. Two of every five of these fires were started by a candle.
Be Safe and Have Fun this Halloween!
Fall Safety Check List
Fall is the perfect time of the year to prepare your home for cold weather and ensuring your home is as safe as possible. So take advantage of the somewhat warmer weather (comparatively speaking) and follow the Fall Safety Check list below.
Here is a Fall Safety Check List:
- Change the batteries in all smoke detectors (you should have one on every level of your home)
- Change the batteries in all carbon monoxide monitors (you should have one on every level of your home)
- Check all vents for any debris
- Check fireplaces for any debris
- Winterize your outdoor faucets
- Check trees for any broken limbs
- Double check your gutters for debris
- Check your furnace filters
SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County wants you and your family to stay safe. If you have an emergency, please give us a call. We can be on site quickly and have the equipment and expertise to take care of your water or fire cleanup.
SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County "Like it never even happened."
"Ready for whatever happens"
Call us at 414-421-3500 to get started
The best way to reduce business interruption following a disaster is to plan for it now!
The SERVPRO Emergency Ready Profile Advantage
- A no cost assessment of your facility.
- This means there is no need to allocate funds, giving you a great value at no cost.
- A concise Profile Document that contains only the critical information needed in the event of an emergency.
- It will only take a little time to complete and will not take you away from current projects, but it will save a lot of time if ever needed.
- A guide to help you get back into you building following a disaster.
- This can help minimize the amount of time your business is inactive by having an immediate plan of action.
- Establishes SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County as your disaster mitigation restoration provider.
- You will have a provider that is recognized as an industry leader close by.
- Identification of the line of command for authorizing work to begin.
- This saves time so we can begin the work of mitigating the damage which can save you time and money.
- Provides facility details such as shut-off valve locations, priority areas and priority contact information.
- Having a quick reference of what to do, how to do it and who to call provides solutions in advance of an emergency so that during the emergency your are "Ready for whatever happens".
Don't wait, call early
Water damage occurs when excess water begins to pool in ares where it shouldn't. Many different factors can create this excess water and thereby contribute to water damage.
When you are aware of potential causes, you can take precautionary measures to insure against a leak or flood. Basically, the sooner you notice and address your water, the better!
Causes of water damage:
- Bursting or leaking pipes
- Issues with the plumbing system
- Buildup in areas prone to collecting water, such as a crawl spaces, attics and basements
- Faulty or malfunctioning household appliances
- Heating, ventilating and air conditioning issues
- Natural disasters and other weather related water problems.
If you have any water issues, call SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County. We are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and can be at your home home or business quickly to take care of the clean up and restoration "Like it never even happened."
Molds are everywhere
Molds are found everywhere, and can grow on almost any substance when moisture is present. They reproduce by spores, which are carried by air currents. When spores land on a moist surface suitable for life, they begin to grow.
Because common building materials are capable of sustaining mold growth and mold spores are ubiquitous mold growth in an indoor environment is typically related to water or moisture and may be caused by incomplete drying of flooring materials (such as concrete).
Flooding, leaky roofs, building maintenance or indoor plumbing problems can lead to interior mold growth. Water vapor commonly condenses on surfaces cooler than the moisture laden air, enabling mold to flourish. This moisture vapor passes through walls and ceilings, typically condensing during the winter in climates with a long heating season.
Significant mold growth requires moisture and food sources and a substrate capable of sustaining growth. Common building materials, such as plywood, drywall, furring strips, carpets and carpet padding are food for mold.
SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County can remediate your mold. Just give us a call.
How do molds affect people?
Some people are more sensitive to molds that others. Those people who are sensitive to mold will have symptoms such as eye irritation, wheezing, skin irritations or nasal stuffiness. More severe reactions can include fever or shortness of breath. In isolated cases, people with chronic lung illnesses may develop mold infections in their lungs.
A 2004 study conducted by the Institute of Medicine found limited or suggestive evidence linking indoor mold exposure and respiratory illness in otherwise healthy children.
Here are some specific recommendations to help avoid excessive mold growth in your home:
- Keep humidity levels as low as you can - no higher than 50%.
- Use an air conditioner or a dehumidifier during humid months.
- Be sure your home has adequate ventilation, including exhaust fans.
- Add mold inhibitors to paints before application.
- Clean bathrooms with mold killing products
- Do not carpet bathrooms or basements
- Promptly remove or replace previously soaked carpets and upholstery.
Mold can begin to grow within 48 hours. So, time is important.
If the job is bigger than you want to handle, give us a call! SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County is here to help.
After the Storm
Be careful to take certain precautions after the store has passed. Damage to your home can have a dramatic, emotional impact, and it's best to have a plan before the store strikes on how to proceed when it's over. Having a plan, and being aware of certain risks, will minimize the threat to you or your family.
Keep these tips in mind:
- Have a portable radio with fresh batteries on hand, and stay tuned to local news organizations for important announcements, bulletins and instructions.
- Remember that you may not have immediate access to your home. Roads could be blocked and power lines could be down.
- Make sure you have current identification.
- Avoid driving as roads may be blocked.
- Avoid sight-seeing or entering a storm affected area
- Avoid downed power lines
- Avoid metal fences and other metal objects
- Do NOT use matches in a store affected area until all gas lines are checked for leaks - keep flashlights and plenty of batteries on hand.
- Use a camera to record thoroughly any damage done to you home before any repairs are attempted.
- In certain areas, the flooding rains that accompany a store can create pest problems. Be aware of potential pest problems in your area., such as mice, rats, insects or snakes that may have "come with the storm".
- Use your phone only for emergencies.
- Assume the water is not safe and use properly store water.
These are just a few ideas to be thinking about before and after a server storm hits.
A small water leak, may not be small...
SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County has crews that are professionally trained to safely clean and restore your home, utilizing the following procedures:
- Identify the Source/Type of Water
- Measure Temperature and Humidity for Drying Analysis.
- Survey the Extent of Damage and Inspect the Premises for Hidden Moisture.
- Perform emergency water extraction.
- Move and block furniture and contents
- Inspect Carpet Pad / Carpet and provide service.
- Apply necessary treatments (disinfectants/deodorization)
- Utilize advanced drying and monitoring equipment.
- Dispose of refuse
Areas that can be affected by a small water leak and you don't even realize it are:
- Break exterior
- Wall Studs
- Interior area
- Carpet Padding
- Bottom wall plate
- Floor joist
- sill Plate
If you notice water, give us a call. SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County will be out to help!
SERVPRO "Like it never even happened."
Home Sweet Home
Your home should be your place of rest. But when water begins leaking - even small leaks in areas your can't see - your home could quickly become a source of stress. The possibility of harmful mold, rot and unseen damage may affect the value of your home and the health of loved ones.
SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County understands how disruptive water damages can be for your entire family and will help ensure the water is identified, regardless of where it hides. That's why we offer 24- hour emergency response by our trained, uniformed restoration professionals. With top-of-the line equipment and time-tested cleanup and restoration techniques, SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County has the expertise to help make your house feel like home again.
After all, when it comes to your home and your family, even small disasters can feel like huge problems. So if a water damage occurs in your home, just call us at 414-421-3500. We'll be there to help make it "Like it never even happened"
Peace of Mind
Once every three months, drain one gallon of water from your water heater tank to reduce the sediment collecting in the bottom of the tank.
Leaks within a home or business can cause extensive damage if unnoticed for a long period of time. Leaking water can seep into flooring, carpets, baseboards and walls while moving throughout the structure. Such a leak not only damages your property, it can also interrupt you day-to-day schedule.
One out of every ten water incidents in a home is caused by a water heater or washing machine. When you find a leak, you can also find the damage it causes to your home.
It's natural to feel a sense of panic. SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County can provide peace of mind. We understand your concerns and are trained in the cleanup and care of your home and property. Our professional technicians utilize the knowledge and experience only gained by doing hundreds of jobs similar to yours and are prepared to properly clean up damage caused by a leaking water heater or washing machine.
SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County is ready to help make it "Like it never even happened"
Reminder to Home and Business Owners
SERVPRO Recognizes National Preparedness Month with a Reminder to Home and Business Owners:
“Disasters Don’t Plan Ahead. You Can.”
Local disaster restoration specialist offers no-cost tools to help property owners prepare a comprehensive emergency readiness plan
Franklin, WI (Grassroots Newswire) August 23, 2017 - September is National Preparedness Month (http://www.ready.gov/September), an annual event sponsored by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to raise awareness about the importance of preparing—in advance—for the unexpected. In support of this initiative, Colette Wallner, owner of SERVPRO® of Southeast Milwaukee County, encourages Franklin property owners to take the following two steps now to protect their family, home, and business in the aftermath of a disaster.
- Review and update your emergency preparedness plan, including business and life continuity plans. If you don’t yet have a plan, use the tools provided by FEMA to get started. (https://www.ready.gov/make-a-plan)
- Collect and store time-critical information, like the location of shutoff valves, fire suppression system controls, and emergency contact numbers electronically, where it is immediately available to assist first responders.
“Evacuation plans and emergency supply kits help you survive a disaster, but a comprehensive emergency preparedness plan helps you recover from a disaster,” said Wallner. “The most effective response to any emergency is a fast response. That’s why having critical system and contact information at your fingertips is so important. A quick and effective response helps minimize repairs and downtime, helping both businesses and families get back on track in less time, with less stress.”
SERVPRO offers tools for both commercial and residential property owners to help them minimize damage and recover quickly from emergencies. The SERVPRO READY app stores essential contact and property information electronically where it can be accessed with a mobile device in seconds if disaster strikes. Both home and business owners can download the free app at https://ready.SERVPRO.com/home/mobileapp. Local business owners can take an additional preparedness step by designating SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County as their disaster mitigation and restoration provider. SERVPRO professionals will conduct a no-cost assessment of the facility and assist the owner in completing a comprehensive Emergency READY Profile® (ERP) and storing that profile in the READY app.
“Rapid response from a disaster cleanup and restoration specialist can help the property owner evaluate options, start the insurance process, and take the right steps from the beginning to bring their property back to normal,” said Wallner. “Even in the confusion and panic that often surround a disaster, a property owner or manager using the SERVPRO READY app can reach out for expert help right from the scene, using a cell phone.”
SERVPRO® of Southeast Milwaukee County specializes in disaster restoration, cleanup and repair services, helping to remediate damage, making it “Like it never even happened,” for both commercial and residential customers. For more information on SERVPRO® of Southeast Milwaukee County, please contact Colette Wallner at 414-421-3500 or SERVPRO9886@SERVPROsemc.com. For more information on SERVPRO® and the SERVPRO® Emergency READY Program, please visit www.ready.SERVPRO.com.
Founded in 1967, the SERVPRO® Franchise System is a leader and provider of fire and water cleanup and restoration services and mold mitigation and remediation. SERVPRO’s professional services network of more than 1,700 individually owned and operated Franchises responds to property damage emergencies ranging from small individual disasters to multi-million dollar large-loss events. Providing coverage in the United States and Canada, the SERVPRO® System has established relationships with major insurance companies and commercial clients, as well as individual homeowners.
"Every Second Counts: Plan 2 Ways Out!"
Thank you to NFPA for this Fire Prevention Week Material
In a fire, seconds count. Seconds can mean the difference between residents of our community escaping safely from a fire or having their lives end in tragedy.
That's why this year's Fire Prevention Week theme: "Every Second Counts: Plan 2 Ways Out!" is so important. It reinforces why everyone needs to have an escape plan. Here's this year's key campaign messages:
- Draw a map of your home by using the grid available of the NFPA website with all members of your household, marking two exits from each room and a path to the outside from each exit.
- Practice your home fire drill twice a year. Conduct one at night one during the day with everyone in your home, and practice using different ways out.
- Teach children how to escape on their own in case you can't help them.
- Make sure the number of your home is clearly marked and easy for the fire department to fine.
- Close doors behind you as you leave-this may slow the spread of smoke, heat and fire.
- Once you get outside, stay outside. Never go back inside a burning building.
What YOU can do until help arrives
The first 48 hours after a fire damage can make the difference between restoring versus replacing your property and personal belongings. SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County can help prevent fire damage from creating long term problems.
It's hard to wait for help, but what you do and don't do while waiting for help to arrive can make a big difference:
- Limit movement in the home to prevent soot particles from spreading and additional damage from occurring.
- Place clean towels or old linens on rugs and high traffic areas and upholstery.
- Coat chrome faucets, trim and appliances with petroleum jelly or oil.
- Place aluminum foil or wood blocks between furniture legs and wet carpet.
- Do not wash any walls or painted surfaced.
- Do not shampoo carpet or upholstery
- Do not clean any electrical equipment.
- Do not send clothing to a dry cleaner since improper cleaning may set smoke odor.
When we arrive, we will help ensure your property, belongings and memories are restored to preloss condition whenever possible.
Fire Prevention Week: October 8-14, 2017
Develop and Practice an escape plan
Consider this scenario: It's 2 o'clock in the morning. You and your family are fast asleep when you are awaken to the smoke alarm sounding and the smell of smoke. What do you do? If you and your family don't have a plan in place, it could jeopardize your safety, or even prove deadly.
In a typical home fire, you may have as little as one to two minutes to escape safely from the time the smoke alarm sounds. That's why home escape planning is so critical in a fire situation. It ensures that everyone in the household knows how to use that small window of time wisely.
Developing and practicing a home escape plan is like building muscle memory. That preplanning is what everyone will draw upon to snap into action and escape as quickly as possible in the event of a fire.
Remember, your one and only goal during a fire is to get yourself and other family members out of the home safely.
Time is a precious commodity
We are here for your business - big or small
When you need it done right and done fast, call SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County for all your commercial cleaning needs. Did you know when you hire SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County for maintenance cleaning, you get around the clock restoration services built with you in mind? Quality cleaning and quick response - that's the SERVPRO way.
Can't figure out how to get the job done? Call us for your emergency restoration needs. Because when you experience a fire, water or mold damage in your facility, you need fast response and expertise to the get the job done right, ensuring your business can get back into operation as quickly as possible. Through it all, you expect the most reliable information and the very best service at a fair price.
SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County's professionals are committed to providing fire and water cleanup and the restoration services to reduce business interruptions and recovery costs.
Government Facilities have to stay open
Call the cleanup team that's faster to any size diaster
When disaster strikes a government facility, SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County answers the call quickly to access the damage and start mitigation procedures, helping ensure minimum service interruption and lower recovery costs. We understand that when a government facility needs to be cleaned or restored, it needs to stay open and we work with you to ensure you can do just that!
SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County responds to disaster situations with the right personnel and equipment to provide timely mitigation - the key to controlling damage, lowering recovery costs and minimizing interruption to the public and employees. From large disasters to those special cleaning needs that exceed the capabilities of a facility's janitorial service, SERVPRO is committed to a timely response and total customer satisfaction.
SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County specialize in:
- Fire, Smoke & Soot Restoration
- Water Removal and Dehumidification
- Mold Mitigation & Remediation
- Catastrophic Storm Response
- Move Outs & Contents Restoration
- Contents Claim Inventory Service
- Carpet, Upholstery, Drapes and Blind Cleaning
- Ceilings, Walls and Hard Floor cleaning
You can trust the team at SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County!
Clean Homes Sell Faster
Serving Real Estate Agents and their clients throughout Southeast Milwaukee County.
It is a fact: A clean, fresh smelling home sells faster. Unfortunately, not all homes are maintained in the same way. Nearly all realtors are faced, at some point, with a difficult listing to show.
Your sellers may have trouble spots to address before you list or schedule a home inspection. The clients may choose to handle these issues themselves to avoid filing an insurance claim for the damage because it may not be covered by their policy and can affect the home's CLUE report. CLUE (Comprehensive Loss Underwriting Exchange) is a database which records reported loss and damage information, and it is utilized by more that 80% of insurance companies. Unfavorable CLUE reports can lead to increased premiums and policy renewal issues to property owners.
Whether the problem is a water stain on a hardwood floor or a mildew smell in the basement, reassure your clients that SERVPRO can get their home in top show condition and ready to sell.
Veteran realtors encourage clients to keep their homes in top condition for very important reasons:
- Increased market value
- Shortened list to sale conversion times
- Enhanced reputation for quality listings and quick sales.
SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County offers a variety of services to help revive your listings to op show condition:
- Carpet, Upholstery, Drapery and Blind Cleaning
- Ceiling, Wall and Hard Floor Cleaning
- Mold Mitigation and Remediation.
Call us today!
Call SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County at 414-421-3500
SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County is in a CLASS by ourselves when it comes to helping schools provide clean, healthy environments for our children.
Educational institutions can depend on us for fast, thorough service in the vent of fire, water or mold damage. With 24-hour emergency response, our professionals provide mitigation, cleanup and restoration services to reduce recovery costs and to help ensure minimal interruption to your curriculum.
SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County also provides expert cleaning for emergencies or special needs exceeding routine janitorial capabilities, including stain removal, upholstery and drapery dry cleaning, indoor air quality ad vandalism cleanup. Our professionals are trained to clean and sanitize building materials, surfaces and contents following restoration industry standards, using professional cleaning products and EPA registered cleaners and disinfectants.
Mold: From the Ordinary to the Unhealthy
Example of black mold
Fungi and mold naturally occur in our environment. In fact, over 100,000 kinds of fungi have been identified. Fungi produce some very useful results. Yeast is a type of fungi used in preparing breads, baked goods and other food products, including some alcoholic beverages. The unique flavor of blue cheese is a result of mold. An edible mushroom is simply a type of fungi, and lifesaving penicillin is a product of mold (Penicillin chrysogenum).
Even though some forms of mold can add value to our lives, other forms can be harmful. Excessive amounts of mold, different types of mold, and/or exposure to molds may present health concerns for some people.
Intrusion of water into your home or place of business can result in mold growth. Water intrusions can result from storm damage, plumbing or equipment failures, long-standing leaks and poor humidity control. When water intrusions are not addressed right away, the resulting damage can present increased risk of harmful mold growth. Some amount of mold spores are normally present in most environments. If the humidity and moisture levels in a water-damaged environment are not promptly returned to normal, mold spores may grow and multiply. Organic materials found inside a building, such as wood, paper, drywall and insulation, provide food sources for mold to flourish. Excessive mold growth can lead to indoor environmental condisitons that pose a heath threat.
SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County has a professional team that can handle water damages every day and know prompt action is required to prevent mold growth. Mold is more likely to spread when an environment has been subject to moisture for a long period of time. If your property has sustained a recent water damage, it is vital to remove excess water and dry the structure promptly. If these is an ongoing moisture problem in the building, it is important to be alert for:
- The presence of visible mold.
- Strong musty odors which may indicate mold is present.
- Any evidence of past moisture problems that might have caused undetected mold growth.
- Excessive humidity
These conditions may require the expertise of a qualified Indoor Air Quality/Environmental Professional to inspect the building for mold growth and water damage problems.
Have a safe holiday weekend
Labor Day Weekend is the unofficial last weekend of summer. Many people celebrate the three day weekend with picnics, family get-togethers and end of summer trips before school starts. Many area pools and beaches close after this weekend. Some of us like to take advantage of those Labor Day Sales that our local retailers offer. Government offices are closed, as are many other businesses. The roadways are busy - so it pays to be extra diligent when driving.
Labor Day became a federal holiday in 1894 and was intended to recognize the contributions and achievements of American workers - something we should do on a regular basis! Not everybody enjoys a three day weekend, our police, fire and emergency service professionals are frequently very busy coming to the public's aid. We should remember to thank them, as well as the cashier who rings up your purchase when your taking advantage of that great sale.
If your celebration results in water or fire damage or if you just want your carpets cleaned before the Fall season begins, give us at SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County a call.
Watch vs Warning
Photo courtesy of Earth Networks
Based on information provided by NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration), please be aware of the following distinctions.
A thunderstorm is a rain shower during which you hear thunder. Since thunder comes from lightning, all thunderstorms have lightning.
A thunderstorm is classified as "severe" when it contains one or more of the following: Hail (one inch or greater), Winds in excess of 58 mph, Structural wind damage or a tornado.
A severe thunderstorm watch means that the potential exists for the development of thunderstorms which may produce large hail or damaging winds. A watch is issued by the SPC (Storm Prediction Center).
A severe thunderstorm warning means that a severe thunderstorm is occurring or is imminent based on Doppler radar information or a reliable spotter report. A warning is issued by the local National Weather Service.
Emergency Supply Kit
Recommended items to include in a basic emergency supply kit:
- Water (one gallon per person per day)
- Food (non-perishable 3-day supply)
- Manual can opener
- Battery operated radio, preferably a NOAA Weather Radio with tone alert and extra batteries)
- Flashlight and extra batteries
- First aid kit
- Whistle to signal for help
- Dust masks or bandanas
- Plastic sheeting, garbage bags and duct tape
- Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities
- Local maps
- Hygiene items
- Important documents such as copies of insurance policies, identification and bank account information.
- Fire extinguisher
- Matches in a waterproof container
We hope you never need this list, but it's important to be prepared and make sure everyone in your family knows where to find your emergency kit as well as where your family is going to meet in the event of an emergency.
For Homeowners, putting out a fire can be worse than the fire itself
Picture courtesy of google
A backdraft of emotions often sweeps over the homeowners after a fire ravages a home. fear, uncertainty, stress and doubt about the future of the property can overwhelm the homeowner long after the flames have been extinguished and the smoke has cleared.
So after the first wave of heroes have rescued the property, let SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County help you restore it. With the industry-approved training to employ rapid response, the utmost professionalism, cutting-edge technology and open communication, we strive to restore not only the home, but the customer's peach of mind, as well.
The first 48 hours after a fire damage can make the difference between restoring versus replacing your property and personal belongings. SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County professionals can help prevent fire damage from creating long-term problems. Our professionals provide timely response with mitigation services ranging from fire, smoke and soot removal to contents claims inventory and document restoration. these service help ensure your property, belongings and memories are restored to preloss condition when possible,
Should you clean it up yourself?
This water could be contaminated.
There's no such thing as a small disaster. Especially when the water you don't see contains bacteria - or causes mold, rot and other unseen damage. Water damage can affect the value of your property. So before you get out the mop bucket and box fan to try and clean it up yourself, consider how this will affect your property.
A mop and common cleaning products may not be enough for serious water intrusions.
SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County is equipped to safely clean and restore your home or business, utilizing the following procedures:
- Identify the Source/Type of Water
- Measure Temperature and Humidity for drying analysis.
- Survey the extent of damage and inspect the premises.
- Perform emergency water extraction
- Apply necessary treatments i.e. disinfectants/deodorization.
- Utilize drying equipment and monitor drying.
So, before you risk further damaging the value of your home or business by attempting to clean up the mess yourself, call SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County at 414-421-3500.
"Like it never even happened."
Path of the Hurricane Harvey
courtesy of CNN Weather
Harvey is strengthening to a major hurricane with winds approaching 125 mph and is approaching Corpus Christi, Texas. Residents are being encouraged to evacuate due to record-setting flooding. Our thoughts are with the residents of Texas and Louisiana as they go through the first major hurricane since 2005.
We had a taste of the damage water can cause when we had our flooding in July down in Burlington and Kenosha. We have lived through rebuilding our homes and businesses. We can't even imagine the damage a Class 3 hurricane can cause, but we certainly can understand a little of what those residents and business owners are going through.
SERVPRO of Southeast Wisconsin wants to send our thoughts and strength to everyone. We want you to know that we care about you and your family and friends that are here and worrying about your safety.
We also know that when it's time to rebuild, SERVPRO will be there to help!
Steve is keeping the group engaged about Ethics
SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County was proud host Two FREE Continuing Education Seminars on August 23, 2017. We held these seminars at the beautiful Oak Creek Community Center and they went great! We talked about Ethics in the morning and Understanding Mold in the Restoration Industry in the afternoon. We have about 20 of our area's insurance agents participate - and they really were engaged in what they were learning. Asking a lot of great questions to ensure that they could assist their clients in the best possible manner. Our instructor, Steve Deblois made talking about ethics and learning about mold FUN!
Thank you Steve Deblois for traveling all the way from Georgia and thank you to all the insurance agents who attended for your participation and commitment to your clients. We also want to thank the Oak Creek Community Center for making sure everything ran smoothly!
You have a smell...What could it be?
You only have one chance to make a first impression with visitors to your home or business. If you have a moist basement or even if you had water come through a door or window and it wasn't thoroughly and properly dried out, you could have mold. One indicator can be the smell, some people describe as "musty".
While molds are found naturally in the environment, an overabundance inside buildings is undesirable; some people can become ill. People most at risk are infants, children, pregnant women, elderly and people with compromised respiratory systems or weakened immune system.
Although experts disagree about the more controversial details of mold, they all agree that if you have excessive mold, it needs to be removed.
SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County has the proper equipment and experience to take care of your mold problem - big or small. Just give us a call!
Back to School
As millions of students (and their parents) are getting ready to go back to school in a couple of weeks, we have a few reminders from the National Safety Council. It's important for all of us drivers to slow down and keep our eyes open. We need to be alert to anything and everything. A reminder for our kids when walking to and from school - Head up, phone down! There is nothing on your cell phone that can't wait until your safely at home. Pay attention to who and what is going on around you. We want to watch out for our neighbors and make sure we have a safe and happy school year. SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County cares about our community.
Food Truck Friday
Don't you love a night at the park with family and friends? I sure do. Just a reminder that this Friday, August 18 is Food Truck Friday at Konkel Park in Greenfield. The weather promises to be perfect and what's better than a nice selection of food trucks to choose from AND live music all for FREE! The nice part of living in a small community is that we have events like this on a semi-regular basis. We can spend time with family and neighbors this weekend and support our local community in safe and friendly atmosphere. Summer is coming to a close - let's all take advantage of these last few weekends.
5:30p - 10:30p @ 5151 W Layton Ave in Greenfield.
Hope to see you there!
Available at our South Milwaukee Location
Ultrasonic cleaning is a process that use 200 gallon tanks, ultrasound and an appropriate cleaning solvent to clean items. The ultrasound can be used with just water, but use of a solvent appropriate for the item and the soiling enhances the effect. Ultrasonic cleaning is powerful enough to remove tough contaminants, yet gentle enough not to damage the substrate. It provides excellent penetration and cleaning in the smallest crevice and between tightly spaced parts in a cleaning tank.
Utrasonic cleaning uses cavitation bubbles induced by high frequency pressure (sound) waves to agitate a liquid. Cavitation causes micron-size bubbles to form and grow due to alternating positive and negative pressure waves in a solution.
In a nutshell, ultrasonic cleaning is an extremely effective way to clean and sanitize your most treasured belongings.
Wisconsin's Severe Weather Awareness Week
Listen, Act and Live! Those words could protect you and your family during severe storm season. Listening to warnings and seeking shelter immediately will save lives. That’s why Wisconsin Emergency Management (WEM), ReadyWisconsin, the National Weather Service (NWS) and the Wisconsin Broadcasters Association (WBA) have teamed up for Wisconsin’s Tornado and Severe Weather Awareness Week from April 13-17, 2015.
Did you know that…
- Wisconsin averages 23 tornadoes annually.
- In 2014, 22 tornadoes were reported in Wisconsin by the National Weather Service. Eighteen of those tornadoes occurred in June. The strongest tornado in 2014 occurred on June 17 when an EF 3 tornado hit Verona in Dane County. At least 30 homes were damaged as well as the Country View Elementary School. The tornado traveled about a mile, had wind speeds of 136 to 165 mph and was on the ground for several minutes. An EF 2 touched down that same night in Platteville in Grant County. Several homes and businesses were damaged including the University of Wisconsin–Platteville.
- In 2013, 16 tornadoes touched down in Wisconsin including six tornadoes during the overnight hours of August 6-7. An EF 2 struck near New London in Waupaca and Outagamie counties injuring two people and caused millions of dollars in damage.
On Thursday, April 16, 2015, a statewide tornado drill is planned. At 1:00pm, the National Weather Service will issue a statewide mock tornado watch and at 1:45pm a statewide mock tornado warning. Many radio and TV stations will participate in the drill. In addition, NOAA weather radios (also known as emergency weather radios) will issue alert messaging. This is an ideal opportunity for schools, businesses and families to practice safe procedures for severe weather.
Important: The tornado drill will take place even if the sky is cloudy, dark and/or rainy. If actual severe storms are expected in the state on Thursday April 16, the tornado drill will be postponed until Friday, April 17 with the same times. If severe storms are possible Friday the drill will be cancelled. Any changes will be issued to local media as well as posted on the ReadyWisconsin website, Facebook and Twitter pages.
Additional maps and information are also posted at http://readywisconsin.wi.gov.