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What To Do with Belongings After Mold Removal

1/9/2023 (Permalink)

Black mold in the corner of the wall of the room. Preparation for mold removal. For homeowners, mold may be a major issue, especially when it develops within the house.

Mold is a serious problem for homeowners, especially when it grows inside of your home. But mold can also be difficult to remove from items like carpeting, upholstery and wood surfaces if left untreated for too long. If you have been exposed to mold in your home or business premises, you should clean and dispose of any items that may have been affected by the fungus growth as soon as possible after removing them from the area.

After removing the mold, should I clean or throw away my belongings?

If the mold has been removed from your belongings, there's no need to throw them away. If you can clean the items, do so. Cut up or remove any visible moldy parts of the item and then wash it thoroughly in hot water with detergent (to remove remaining spores) or a disinfectant product specifically designed for cleaning mold-contaminated items.

If an item cannot be cleaned (for example, if it is covered by carpeting), you should dispose of it in a sealed plastic bag containing dry ice or other desiccant to prevent further growth of mold inside the bagged area before placing it in an outdoor trash barrel or dumpster.

Why Should Items Be Disposed of After Mold Removal?

There are several reasons why it is imperative to dispose of the items after mold removal.

  • Mold can be present in many places in your home, so you must keep an eye out for any signs of mold. If you see black or white spots on walls or ceilings, then you may have a mildew problem and should call a professional immediately.
  • Mold spores are microscopic, and they float through the air waiting for something to land on - like your carpeting or furniture - so that they can grow into colonies.

How to Clean Items that Have Been Molded

After mold removal, it's best to clean items that have been moldy with a HEPA vacuum. You can use a stiff brush to remove any visible mold and then wash the item with hot water and detergent, then dry it in a dryer on high heat for 30 minutes or more.

If the item doesn't come out completely clean after this process, wipe down all surfaces with a vinegar solution (1 part vinegar:10 parts water) and let sit overnight before rinsing again. Finally, dry items completely before returning them to their original location.

How to Clean Up Following Mold Removal

Once the mold has been removed, it’s important to thoroughly clean your home. This will not only help remove any remaining spores and prevent them from spreading, but it also makes living in a mold-free environment more comfortable for you and your family.

  • Remove all contaminated items from your home by washing them with soap and water or throwing them out. This includes bedding, clothes, shoes, toys, and other fabrics that were exposed to the mold. 
  • Clean all surfaces with soap and water. Use a disinfectant spray on hard surfaces such as countertops and floors before wiping down with paper towels or rags soaked in warm water mixed with dish detergent.

Mold removal can be a long and difficult process, but it’s important to take care of your belongings afterwards if you want to keep them. So, make sure you know what needs to be done before calling a mold removal company!

What Does Water Damage Look Like?

12/13/2022 (Permalink)

Black mold growth on ceiling due to humidity beside a light fixture Water damage can lead to mold growth

Signs of Water Damage

Water damage is something that can happen to anyone, but it can sometimes be difficult to tell when your home is affected. In addition to the obvious signs of a water damage that come from things like floods — such as watermarks on walls and floors or standing water in areas — there are several other indicators that may indicate hidden damage. We'll help you learn what these signs are and how they might affect your home so you can act before your property becomes irreparable.

Water can damage many things around the home.

Water damage can occur in many ways, including floods, broken pipes, and leaks. Water damage is also caused by a fire or even a faulty washing machine.

Water damage itself doesn't always look like water. When you notice a strange smell coming from an area of your home, it could be the result of water damage that you didn't know was there until it was too late. You may also see signs of mold growth on walls and ceilings as well as small stains or cracks in drywall where there wasn't any before.

Peeling, bubbling, or flaking paint

Paint is a form of plastic, so it can be damaged by water. Water damage to paint can also mean that there's been some other kind of damage to your home—because if the paint is peeling or bubbling up, you're probably looking at more than just a little bit of mold growing in the basement. The presence of water damage in your home (particularly on the walls) is likely an indication that there are problems with your foundation and/or plumbing system that need to be addressed by professionals.

Warped or discolored floorboards

If your wood floors have sustained water damage, you may notice that they've begun to warp or discolor. This can happen when the wood swells and shrinks due to the water damage. It can also happen when it cracks, which can cause it to lose its structural integrity. If you notice this type of damage in your home, hire a professional contractor as soon as possible.

Discoloration or texture changes in walls or ceilings

  • Water damage can also cause discoloration or texture changes on walls and ceilings.
  • In addition to wallpaper, water can damage paint, plaster, and the surface of drywall.

Swelling or buckling walls or floors

When a room is flooded, damaged walls and floors can swell or buckle. In some cases, the swelling may cause cracks in the drywall as well. This is because water collects inside these materials and expands over time to break them down. It's important to note that this type of damage can occur even if your home has no visible signs of flooding; if there are leaks or breaks in pipes that allow water into your home's interior, you could still be at risk for this sort of structural damage.

Rotting wood flooring

One of the first and most common signs of water damage is rotting wood flooring. When moisture seeps into a home’s floors, it can cause the wood underneath to rot and crumble away.

Not only because decaying floors can lead directly back towards health issues but also because rotten wood can become more flammable when it dries out. 


Water damage is a serious issue, one that can lead to mold growth and destruction of your property if not properly handled. If you think you may have water damage, call SERVPRO of NE Hillsborough/Plant City for help. We’re happy to come out and assess the situation at no charge. Call us today!

Water damage can be devastating to your home and belongings. The best thing to do is call a professional. You should never try to clean up the mess or fix the damage yourself, because it could cause more harm than good. Water is often not visible to the human eye, so if you spot signs of water damage it's important that you act quickly before additional damage occurs.

When Should I Change the Supply Lines In My Bathroom?

11/5/2022 (Permalink)

Bathroom supply line You should change the supply lines in your bathroom every few years.

When Should I Change the Supply Lines in my Bathroom?

If you're like most people, your bathroom supply lines are one of the least-talked about components of your home. Even though they're out of sight, they're not out of mind! In fact, these plumbing parts are used every day and can be susceptible to leaks as they age over time. Knowing when to replace them can help save you from a lot of headache and money down the road — so let's get started!

The supply lines in your bathroom connect to the main water line and delivers water directly to your faucets. Supply lines are usually located behind the walls or under the sink, but they can also be found inside of a wall or floor.

The materials used to make supply lines vary depending on how they will be used and where they are in your home. Plastic supply lines are typically used inside of walls, while copper or galvanized steel supply lines are often found running from a water meter to a house's exterior.

Supply lines are one of the most neglected components of your bathroom since they're typically located behind the walls or under the sink.

You should still clean and inspect these lines regularly to make sure they remain in good condition. If you notice any signs of wear or damage, you'll want to replace them before there is a leak. This will prevent water damage from flooding parts of your home as well as prevent potential health risks that can come with prolonged exposure to mold and mildew buildup on your supply lines.

Supply lines are used multiple times a day and contain rubber parts that deteriorate over time due to constant exposure to pressurized water temperature changes and chemicals.

You should change the supply lines in your bathroom every few years because they are used every day, multiple times a day and contain rubber parts that deteriorate over time due to constant exposure to pressurized water temperature changes and chemicals. You can prolong the life of your supply lines by installing plastic shut-off valves near each faucet (including tub spouts), installing an anti-scald device at the hot water heater, and keeping cabinet doors closed when not in use.

Leaking supply lines can cause significant damage, so it's important that you understand when they need to be replaced.

When should I replace the supply lines in my bathroom?

  • Replace the supply lines in your bathroom as soon as you observe any sign of leaking. Leaking can be caused by several factors, but one thing's for sure: it will lead to significant damage if left unchecked.
  • Plastic supply lines are often covered under a 5–8-year warranty, but steel braided ones come with lifetime warranties. Not only that, but they're also less likely to leak than plastic ones—and they look nicer too!

Supply lines should be replaced every 5-8 years or immediately if leaking

If you're like most of us, you use the water in your bathroom every day. You might take a shower or have a bath. Maybe you wash your hands or brush your teeth. You probably drink from the faucet and clean with soap dispensers and liquid hand soaps.

Whatever it is that you do in there, there's no question that demand on the supply lines (the pipes) is very high. The problem is that they contain rubber parts that deteriorate over time—and sometimes fast. If they begin to leak while they still look good, this isn't necessarily an indicator that they need replacing because they may just be going bad prematurely due to age and wear-and-tear factors such as temperature fluctuations or regular use. 

Hopefully, this article has been helpful in demystifying the supply line replacement process. There’s no need to be intimidated by it; just follow the guidelines above and you'll be sure to get the job done right.

Water Damage is a Result of Fire Damage

10/14/2022 (Permalink)

wet floor, man preparing cleaning utensils Fire and water damage restoration services

In the wake of a commercial fire, water and smoke damage can leave your building in danger of collapsing. It’s important to work with a commercial fire cleanup team that has experience removing both water and smoke damage from buildings. A few tips on what they might need:

Water Damage Is a Result of Fire Damage

Water damage is a side effect of fire damage. Water damage can occur when fire sprinklers go off in your building during a fire. Fire sprinklers are designed to put out fires, but they also release water when they activate. This can cause mold and other problems in your building.

Here's what you need to know about handling the water cleanup after a commercial fire.

The first thing you need to know about water damage after a fire is that it's almost always going to happen. Water damage is a result of fire damage, which itself is a result of the combustion of materials in the building. This can include paper, wood, plastics, and other combustible materials found throughout your office or workplace.

Once those materials begin burning, they create smoke, which contains particles that are filled with water vapor. These particles will eventually rain down upon all non-combustible surfaces within the building causing significant amounts of water damage. 

Water and smoke can spread throughout your building.

Fire damage can cause water and smoke damage throughout your building. Water and smoke can spread through the walls, floors, ceilings, and even crawl spaces of an entire building. This can lead to structural damage that must be repaired before you can begin rebuilding. Firefighters work hard to contain fires as quickly as possible so that they do not spread beyond their original location. However, if a fire does get out of control it could cause extensive structural damage throughout your building’s floors and walls which will require extensive repairs before you can rebuild or reopen your business.

Cleaning up water damage requires special tools.

Water damage cleanup is much more complicated than fire cleanup. Water damage requires special tools, training, and knowledge to perform properly. Firefighters are trained to recognize and clean up water damage.

It’s important to work with a commercial fire cleanup team that has experience removing both water and smoke damage from buildings.

While the fire damage itself is the most obvious and immediate concern, there is another issue that you don’t want to overlook: water damage. Water damage can be even more damaging than smoke damage, because it leaves behind a moldy mess that can take weeks or months to clean up.

To properly remove both water and smoke damage from your building, it’s important to work with a commercial fire cleanup team that has experience removing both types of damage from buildings. The best way to find out if the company you are considering hiring for this type of work has experience in both areas is to ask them about their past jobs and what sort of skills they have when it comes cleaning up after fires.

You should also make sure that any company that you hire has been licensed by your state or city government before hiring them as well; this way you know they have met all legal requirements needed without having to worry about whether they're following protocol correctly when working on your property.

If you’re dealing with water damage after a fire, it’s important to work with a commercial fire cleanup team that has experience removing both water and smoke damage from buildings. The team can assess the extent of the damage and determine whether any items need to be removed or replaced. They can also assist with drying out your building so that mold doesn't start growing on wet surfaces like drywall or carpeting.

The Cost of Mold Damage

8/25/2022 (Permalink)

Mold found on baseboards. Mold found on baseboards.

If mold is present in your Valrico, FL home, the damage could add up depending upon several factors. If you catch the problem quickly, the cost is not likely to be too severe. On the other hand, if the problem is extensive and has been allowed to spread, the final cost could be quite significant. Because of this, mold removal efforts by a professional mold mitigation company should begin as soon as possible. Over time, mold penetrates materials such as drywall, carpeting, and furniture, sometimes requiring they be replaced.

The Cost of Mold Removal

Mold mitigation in your home could cost as little as a couple of hundred dollars or as much as several thousand dollars. The factors that determine the cost include the following:

  • The size of the impacted area
  • The length in time of the mold infestation
  • The areas of the home the mold has colonized
  • The presence of secondary damage such as water damage
  • The scope of structural damage

Some areas of mold growth are harder to access and more difficult to remove, necessitating the use of specialized equipment. For example, if mold spores have made it into the HVAC system, this requires the cleaning of air ducts and perhaps even the furnace. Widespread structural damage to a home is a worst-case scenario.

The Case of Black Mold Removal

Black mold is sometimes famous because it has toxic properties that could impact human health. The removal process for all types of molds is pretty similar and different types of mold are unlikely to affect the cost of cleanup. The restoration process will typically require removing water-damaged materials, cleaning and disinfecting surfaces, vacuuming up spores, and repairing damaged drywall and other structures. It could also entail painting and the replacement of clothes and other personal items.

No two jobs for mold removal are the same. In all cases, though, fast action can limit your expenses.

Quick Guide to Residential Fire Extinguishers

8/24/2022 (Permalink)

Fire extinguisher To make sure you get a fire extinguisher that will operate in your home, read the label carefully.

Extinguishers For The Home

Having a fire extinguisher in your home in Valrico, FL can help you increase your chances of escaping from a fire. With so many products on the market, it can be hard to know which one is right for you. Use this guide and talk with a residential fire cleanup expert to figure out which extinguisher you should stock.


This fire preparedness tool comes in a variety of sizes. The size you want to get depends on where in the house you want to keep it.

  • 2-pound: This small extinguisher is perfect for on the go. You can keep it in the trunk of your car to help prepare you for any situation. Some small models come with mounting hardware, so you can keep it in one place.
  • 5-pound: This rechargeable model works well in fire-hazard areas in the home. Consider keeping it near your kitchen or laundry room, so it's easily accessible.
  • 10-pound: This larger fire extinguisher is ideal for parts of the home that are left unattended for periods of time. The size means there's more fire suppressant chemicals, which can help dampen a fire that went unnoticed for a bit. Keep this size in a garage, shed or workshop.

As you consider the size of your extinguisher, you also need to think about your personal capabilities. If you would struggle to lift and use a 10-pound extinguisher, it might not be the right option for you.


You also have to think about the classification of the extinguisher. Residential products come in three classes: A, B and C. The A classification means the suppressant will work well on trash, wood and paper. B means the extinguisher can help put out a home fire caused by grease or liquids. C usually means it's suited for electrical fires.

Read the label of your fire extinguisher closely to make sure you have a unit that can work well in your home. Consider both size and classification before you buy your next fire dampening tool.

Protecting Your Investment with Fire Coverage

8/17/2022 (Permalink)

Ways To Protect Your Investment From Fire

Losing your business property to the destructive forces of a fire can be a costly nightmare. Fortunately, if you have fire insurance, the financial aftermath does not have to fall entirely on your shoulders. The right coverage can protect your investment from restoration to replacement.

Restoration Expenses
The devastating flames are not the only cause of property damage during fires. It can also happen due to:

  • Smoke
  • Extreme heat
  • Water from firefighting efforts
  • Foam from fire extinguishers

When serious damage has been done, it may be necessary to hire a fire restoration company to perform services such as smoke cleanup and building repairs. Fire insurance can offset the cost of restoring your building, which can help get your investment back on track sooner.

Unexpected Costs
While repair costs are a more obvious expense, there are many unexpected financial setbacks that could occur after a fire. You may have fire department service fees, penalties for being underinsured, or issues with code violations. Without proper insurance, these surprise bills might come out of your pocket. The right fire coverage eliminates the potential for being underinsured, and it can help with unforeseen expenses like fees and code issues.

When a property is lost in a fire, some insurance plans pay actual cash value to the owner. However, the actual cash value might not be the full value of the property to your business operations. This means that if your whole building burns down, you could be responsible for paying a large sum of money to replace it. Fire coverage can include replacement coverage, which covers the value of the lost property or the cost to rebuild or replace it.

When it comes to protecting your Valrico, FL, business property, you should ask yourself if you have enough insurance coverage. If the unthinkable happens, fire insurance could be the first line of defense for your investment.

How Do I Know If There Is Mold in My Office Building?

7/25/2022 (Permalink)

Mold testing Mold testing in Valrico, FL

Areas Where You Can Find Mold

You're busy at work, so you don't give much thought to the state of the building as long as your cleaning team comes through and empties the trashcans. You haven't had a flood in Valrico, FL, you haven't spotted a leak, and you have a strict policy about not leaving food out in the kitchen. But still, you have this sneaking suspicion that there's mold in your building.

You don't have to have obvious water damage for mold to grow. A too-high moisture content in your space can allow for mold growth. Mold can even grow on a high dusty shelf and spread to other areas. The only way to know for certain that you have a mold problem is to hire an indoor environmental specialist, but here are a few hints that you may have mold in your building.

1. Smell
People typically describe the smell of mold as "musty." While there are other scents as well—earthy, wet socks, rotten wood—the smell of mold is pretty unpleasant and might be the first hint that you have a problem. Mold can grow anywhere, from you main place of business to the storage room to the bathroom. It's pretty indiscriminate as long as it has a food source.

2. See
Mold that you can see is more disconcerting. Each type of mold might look a little bit different but if you see spots on the wall in the corner that don't match the decor, it might be mold. Not all mold is black; it can be gray, green, yellow, blue, or any combination of those or other colors.

3. Test
When you think you've discovered mold, an indoor environmental specialist should come and do a mold test so that you know what kind you're dealing with. Then the best thing you can do is call a mold removal and remediation professional to clean and restore the area so that you don't have continued problems in the future.

Finding mold can be a little nerve-racking, but with the help of an indoor environmental specialist and a mitigation team, you should have your office cleaned up in no time.

3 Important Things To Know About Bursting Pipes

7/20/2022 (Permalink)

Burst and rusty pipe When you have to deal with the hassle of a burst pipe, focus on the source of the leak

Keep These Three Points In Mind

When a pipe breaks, the mess it causes is complicated. Stopping the leak, removing the water, and drying whatever was affected promptly are essential in preventing mold growth and other issues. If you do have to deal with bursting pipes in Plant City, FL, water remediation specialists are available to help with the cleanup process and stop mold. 

1. What To Do After Flooding
When you have to deal with the hassle of a burst pipe, focus on the source of the leak. Turn off the water source and do your best to remove excess water from the area. Call a professional plumber if you need to fix a broken pipe to ensure that it's done safely and correctly.
Dry everything thoroughly. It is natural to focus on belongings, but make sure attention is given to floors and walls as well. Anything water could have soaked into is susceptible to mold growth. If you spot or suspect mold, turn off any ventilation system that may spread mold spores around.

2. How Mold Takes Hold
Mold can develop in as little as 48 hours after bursting pipes. When walls, floors, and furniture aren't properly dried out after an unexpected flood or leak, mold can develop quickly and silently where you won't see it. Often a musty odor is the first clue that something isn't right.

3. How Professionals Can Handle the Mold
Leave mold cleanup to professionals. Don't touch any mold or attempt to get rid of it yourself. Close off the affected area until it can be cleaned. Don't try to dry out the mold. Blowing a fan over a mold-infested area will not remove the mold, but it may spread mold spores through the air and exacerbate your problem.

The best way to avoid mold from water damage caused by bursting pipes is to maintain your plumbing system. Check on pipes periodically to make sure they aren't leaking or swelling. Respond to small leaks quickly before they turn into something worse.

5 Ways To Reduce Flood Damage To Your Commercial Building

7/1/2022 (Permalink)

Flooded building entrance Flooding doesn't have to ruin your property and set you completely off schedule. Focus on how to hinder water penetration and minimize trouble.

5 Ways To Reduce Flood Damage To Your Commercial Property

The FEMA calculator estimates that one inch of flooding can cost owners up to $25,000 in damages. Commercial owners in Valrico,FL, must also consider that as they pay for restoration, the operation may have come to a halt, waiting for the property to become functional again. To save time and money, it's best to take a proactive approach, avoiding water accumulation. The following are five ways to mitigate flood devastation.

1. Check Plumbing Lines

Owners may not realize that flood damage may occur from backups within the gutters and plumbing lines. Sewage water, for instance, may push into the premises as the water level increases outside. The Category three fluid houses a plethora of bacteria. Be sure to have experts check the backflow valve and sump pump annually.

Also, if leaves and debris clog gutters, they cannot function as they should. Rather than drawing the flow away from the structure, it could allow it to filter inside. Consistently check this area, clearing it out as needed.

2. Consider Property Placement

Most flooding impacts the lower zones before the upper regions. Think about where you store expensive or essential pieces. If a major storm hits, water buildup could ruin anything on the floor. Move it to the second floor. If that isn't possible, stack things on tables. Electronics, particularly, require a safe space.

3. Get a Professional Opinion

If you aren't sure about how your place may handle a torrential system, contact a storm and water restoration company. The specialists are certified. With their knowledge, they can point out vulnerabilities and recommend procedures that may safeguard those zones.
They could install permanent flood barriers or moveable walls.

4. Move Electrical Equipment Up

Storm damage permits excessive water penetration that can reach the electrical wiring. Consider moving outlets, circuit breakers and switches to higher levels.

5. Use Waterproof Products

One of the major costs of floods is replacing harmed materials. Consider buying things that hold up well to moisture. Be sure to look for flood-resistant labels.

Flooding doesn't have to ruin your property and set you completely off schedule. Focus on how to hinder water penetration and minimize trouble.