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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Archived Blog Posts

Pets Affected by Water Damage and Mold

3/4/2019 (Permalink)

This cat surveys the recent, unplanned changes to his home from a frozen pipe.

Did your house recently have a water damage? Have you considered the affect it could have on your pets? Any time a structure has a water damage the potential for mold growth exists. Water caused the ceiling to collapse in this home after a pipe broke. The homeowner was out of town for several days before the water damage was discovered. This was long enough for microbial growth, including mold to grow on many of the home's surfaces.

This photo shows part of the home from our initial inspection. You can see the homeowner's furry friend is still not sure how to respond to the change in his home. The mold growth can reduce the air quality in the home and while this cat may not be able to say it verbally, he is affected by the mold growth just as much as his human companions.

Both the customer and his feline friend were able to breathe much easier when our crews completed water mitigation and mold remediation.

Ozone to Eliminate Fire Odors

2/27/2019 (Permalink)

An ozone generator is being used to deodorize a home after a fire. Ozone is heavier than air so the generator is set on a ladder for maximum results.

Ozone is a chemical which can be used to neutralize odors. It is made out of three Oxygen atoms, which is not a very stable configuration. This makes it very reactive, because it wants to convert into Oxygen molecules, which are made out of two Oxygen atoms and are significantly more stable. Ozone works to neutralize odor molecules by reacting with them to create Oxygen atoms and other less stinky molecules.

We use Ozone generators after many fire damages to neutralize odors in homes, businesses and in our warehouse on personal property. It is a very effective process and works on most odors and materials. Care must be taken not to expose elastic and certain rubbers to ozone because it can react with them and break them down. Our SERVPRO technicians are trained to determine which deodorization method is best for each project. One of the many benefits to Ozone is that because it causes a chemical reaction, the odor is unlikely to return as long as everything has been thoroughly cleaned.

One of the caveats is that the Ozone generator creates Ozone by removing Oxygen from the environment, which makes it impossible to breathe while it is running. We only use Ozone when structures are unoccupied to avoid problems with this. Once the generator is turned off, the environment will refill with Oxygen as the Ozone reacts with odor molecules making the space safe to inhabit again. Our technicians weigh the pros and cons of each deodorization method to determine which method or combination of methods is most appropriate for each project.

Microbial Growth on Contents After Water Damage

2/19/2019 (Permalink)

The mold in this photo started growing after this end table was left in a water damaged basement for a week while the homeowner was out of town.

Microorganisms can grow very quickly in the right environment. One microorganism you might be familiar with is mold, which can grow into very large colonies on a variety of surfaces. There are hundreds of different species of mold and each has its own preferred environment. Most like warm, wet environments, but you can have microbial growth even in colder climates like your refrigerator!

Just like mold can survive in a variety of temperatures, it can also survive on a variety of surfaces. Some mold grows best on materials such as drywall and carpet, others grow best on fruits and food like bread. Most are not very picky and will make due with what they can get. The mold in this photo started growing after this end table was left in a water damaged basement for a week while the homeowner was out of town.

Temporary Power After Fire Damage

2/11/2019 (Permalink)

This generator is being used to power both temporary lighting and air scrubbers to make it safe for our technicians to work.

Last week we discussed the importance of air scrubbers when people are in a structure after a fire damage. What we didn't cover is what to do when a home has no power to run those air scrubbers. Fortunately, at SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties we have a solution. We are able to supply small generators for most fire projects that require temporary power to run air scrubbers and lights. We can also supply large generators capable of powering enough drying equipment to dry large homes and businesses. When possible, we recommend having an electrician evaluate the home or business's electrical system to see if part or all of the system can be used. When using the existing electrical is not possible, trust us to supply the power we need to complete mitigation and make it, "Like it never even happened."

SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton, and Southern Lake Counties is ready to respond at all times to major storms

2/5/2019 (Permalink)

Through Tornadoes, Hurricanes, or Winter Storms, SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton, and Southern Lake Counties is Ready to Respond to Them All.
Through Tornadoes, Hurricanes, or Winter Storms, SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton, and Southern Lake Counties is Ready to Respond to Them All.

SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton, and Southern Lake Counties joined the Storm Response Program that is in place throughout the Unites States to assist in times of major disaster. The Storm Response program is four geographically based teams of franchises that is capable of managing catastrophic events from small local microbursts to massive hurricane responses that handle thousands of incidents that bring in hundreds of tons of equipment and even thousands of crews. Storm Team members are committed to being in a constant state of readiness to respond in a storm affected area.

SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton, and Southern Lake Counties is constantly reviewing prior storm events to determine how we can improve our response and capabilities. We have dedicated supplies, equipment, vehicles and a Storm Response trailer in our fleet that is stocked with supplies that are dedicated to a quick and efficient response.

The Importance of Air Scrubbers on Fire Damages

2/3/2019 (Permalink)

Check out this air scrubber in action on a recent fire damage.

Does the smell of a campfire bring back fond memories? The same smell can be found in a house after a fire damage, although it can vary based on what burned. Unfortunately, that smell is strongly associated with poor air quality. At SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties we always recommend using air scrubbers to improve the air quality after a house fire until demolition and cleaning are completed. This is done for both your safety and the safety of our workers. It is virtually impossible to know exactly what burned in every fire, and many building materials and personal property can undergo chemical reactions when they are burned resulting in unsafe particles in the air. Our HEPA-filtered air scrubbers are capable of getting almost all of these dangerous particles out of the air, resulting in a safer environment for everyone. Partnered with personal protective equipment, air scrubbers help make your home cleaner and safer.

SERVPRO Works With Local First Responders To Locate the Source of a Water Damage

1/30/2019 (Permalink)

Our SERVPRO Production Manager is showing the local fire department where the source of water is so they can get the sprinkler system shut off.

SERVPRO was already onsite cleaning up a water damage when the fire alarm went off at this local hospital. The local fire department was dispatched right away while SERVPRO worked with the maintenance department to locate the source of the additional water. Unfortunately, the winter storm that caused the first water damage broke a second sprinkler in a different part of the building. When the fire department showed up, SERVPRO was able to direct them to the source of loss and to the room with the shutoffs for the sprinkler system. This prompt response resulted in less water getting out overall, and greatly reduced the amount of water released from the sprinkler system. The customer was grateful for SERVPRO's assistance. If you want to improve response times before you experience a fire or water damage, contact us at 219-779-7577 and ask about our free Emergency Ready Profile. It allows us to locate and document shutoffs for your gas, electric and water as well as put contact information for all the people you might need at 2:00am in one place.

Winter Storm Freezes Pipes

1/23/2019 (Permalink)

The water pressure in this home is so strong that after the pipe froze and broke it shot water through the drywall and across the room!

Most people think of thunderstorms when prompted but winter storms can wreak havoc on your home too. One invisible danger to your home is extreme cold. An extremely cold system caused this pipe to freeze and burst because the wall was not properly insulated. The force of the built up water was strong enough to break a hole in the wall and shoot across the room! The homeowner was shocked to discover the pipe had burst because the room is located directly above a finished garage. Unfortunately, it was so cold outside that the garage was colder than normal. The cold air found its way into the wall cavity and settled there until the pipe froze and burst. Fortunately, the customer caught the leak quickly and contacted us to dry their home. We were able to save significantly more than they expected, even though the water flowed through three different levels of their home.

Total Loss Inventory

1/19/2019 (Permalink)

Many items in this photo cannot be restored to preloss condition but still must be documented so that insurance can issue a check to replace them.

At SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties we know that fire can affect more than just your house. It can also destroy your personal belongings. We have special inventory software that allows us to mark which items can be cleaned and restored, as well as which items cannot be restored to preloss condition. This can make your life much simpler because insurance companies will want a detailed list of all the non-salvageable items in your home. You do not need to spend the time creating this list yourself. Instead, trust SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties to complete the inventory. We are used to working with hundreds of different insurance companies and can work with you and your insurance company to create a list that makes it easy for you to get a check to replace any belongings that did not make it.

Containment Allows Local Business to Stay Open During Water Mitigation

1/17/2019 (Permalink)

The containment on this commercial project allowed the business to stay open while reducing drying time.

Has your business been affected by water damage? Are you worried you will have to close down your operation for days or weeks at a time for repairs? At SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton & Southern Lake Counties we understand the importance of keeping your doors open. We are able to supply many solutions to help make it, "Like it never even happened." with as minimal interruption as possible.

One solution we can offer on some water damages is building containment to section off only the affected areas. This commercial property owner was happy she did not have to close down her school during the drying process. The containment prevented students from interacting with the drying equipment, reduced the noise of the drying equipment and sped up the drying process.

The Importance of Atmospheric Readings on Water Damages

1/14/2019 (Permalink)

This is a photo of one of our thermohydrometers on a recent water damage project.

Have you ever wondered how our technicians know if your property is still wet? On the first visit there is often standing water that needs to be extracted and building materials are visibly wet. Often after the first day the building materials no longer look wet but are still retaining moisture. With the air, it is even more difficult to tell how much moisture is in it because you cannot see it.

Our technicians use thermohydrometers to test the amount of water in the air at a given temperature. This is the Relative Humidity. They also check to see what temperature the air is. Those two numbers can be used to calculate the grains, or actual amount of water in the air. The grains let us compare two different quantities of air to determine which has more water in it. Our dehumidifiers work by removing water from the air, and taking atmospheric readings lets us not only check to see if they are working properly but how well they are working. We also compare the grains of water in the affected area to an unaffected area. Once the grains in the affected area are at or below the grains of an unaffected area, we know that the air is dry!

It is important to know that the air is dry so that there is no secondary damage from condensation or high humidity, both of which can lead to microbial growth.

Ice Dam Causes Multiple Leaks on Flat Roof

1/11/2019 (Permalink)

Ice and snow built up on this building's roof, which caused water to leak into the finished part of the structure.

Winter is coming!

It is starting to get cold out there so don't forget to check and make sure your roof is kept clear of ice and snow. This commercial building owner called us after snow and ice built up and caused multiple leaks. Ice dams form when ice and snow melt, freeze, melt and freeze again. When the snow first falls, it tends to stay on top of the roof. However, when it melts and refreezes the ice can form under the roof and vapor barrier. This results in holes that leak water into the finished part of your building when it rains or snows again. Flat or low pitched roofs are particularly susceptible to ice dams, but under the right conditions they can happen anywhere.

If you suspect an ice dam is causing water to come into your home or business call us at 219-779-7577!

Fire Content Inventory

1/9/2019 (Permalink)

These items were packed after being in a fire-damaged home.

Has your home been affected by a fire damage? Don't forget that the fire will affect more than just your house. Any personal belongings that were in the structure at the time of the fire, or that were brought into the house before repairs were completed can be covered in soot and retain a strong odor.

At SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties we are prepared to restore both your home and its contents. We use special inventory software to document the condition of all of the items we pack and bring back to our facility in Saint John, Indiana. This allows us to keep track of all of your personal property as it goes through the restoration process and makes it easy for us to return contents to their original rooms.

Why Insurance Professionals Refer SERVPRO

1/7/2019 (Permalink)

Insurance professionals understand that the longer a fire or water damage sits, the higher the claim cost ends up being. Insurance agents and adjusters recognize that while policyholders are responsible for secondary damage caused by not cleaning up a loss promptly, they can assist their customers in preventing secondary damage altogether by pointing them in the right direction.

Insurance professionals are uniquely positioned to be able to both educate and assist their customers mitigating their property. Most homeowners have never experienced a water or fire damage and turn to their insurance professional for advice on what to do next. Insurance professionals recommend contacting SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton, and Southern Lake Counties because as a locally owned and operated company we are able to respond promptly to limit the damage as much as possible. This allows the customer to relax and watch as we make it, "Like it never even happened."

Commercial Mold Remediation in Lowell, Indiana

1/3/2019 (Permalink)

In this photo, you can see a portion of the subfloor after it has been steam cleaned before the mats are reset.

A local Lowell Indiana business contacted SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties after discovering mold growing under their rubber mat flooring. During the initial inspection our Project Manager determined that at some point the floor drains had backed up, probably during a heavy rainstorm. The drain backup went undetected, which resulted in microbial growth.

To remove the mold our technicians lifted and cleaned each of the mats, as well as the concrete subfloor. Most of the building had two layers of mats, but some areas had as many as four layers. The technicians marked where the mats originated from so that they could be put back into place after cleaning. In the photo you can see a section during remediation where some of the mats have been removed and the subfloor is being cleaned.

Water Damage - Causes and Prevention

1/2/2019 (Permalink)

Call SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton, and Southern Lake Counties for help with frozen and burst pipes.

Water damage is one of the most frequent causes of damage to residential and commercial buildings.  In addition to plumbing failures caused by leaking pipes or appliances, drain back ups or outside water, we often experience winter temperatures that can freeze water lines.  Frozen water lines expand and crack, leaking water until the source is discovered and turned off.  Perhaps the most common frozen pipe issue comes from hose bibs and exterior faucets.  Disconnecting hoses before cold weather hits is important, but even disconnected hose bibs can freeze.  “Frost-free” faucets only work if installed properly, and maintaining adequate heat and insulation is key.

If you experience an unexpected water intrusion in your home or business, SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton, and Southern Lake Counties is the one call you need to make to ensure that skilled technicians, equipped with top of the line drying equipment and procedures respond to your loss immediately.  At SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton, and Southern Lake Counties we are experienced with every type of water damage, from the smallest clean water drip in your home to the largest Category 3 commercial water damage.

Mold Damage Cleanup Techniques

12/28/2018 (Permalink)

Black mold on shower tiles.

Monitoring the level of dampness in your property is the key to stopping mold damage. Mold development is common in wet walls, attics, basements, and crawlspaces. Making sure your attics are well ventilated, stopping leaks, and directing water away from your building's foundation can help in preventing such experiences. We are going to cover some of the cleanup and repair procedures that our team performs when dealing with such incidents.

There are several techniques that our SERVPRO technicians use when addressing mold damage removal.  The technique we choose is usually determined by the surface that is infested by the mold. If we are removing the mold from non-porous surfaces such as tiles, glass, tubs, and sinks, then we can scrub with an antimicrobial cleaner. The same procedure cannot work when we are dealing with porous surfaces such as drywall and carpets. We understand that mold can cause health effects, so we wear face masks, gloves, and other protective equipment when scrubbing the mold.

Removing Drywall After Water Damage

12/26/2018 (Permalink)

Our technician is doing controlled demolition to help dry this home after it suffered a water damage.

Not all building materials can be saved when they get wet. Our technicians are trained to determine which building materials can be dried and which building materials need to be removed. On this particular job, the drywall needs to be removed to access the area behind the shower.

In the photo, you can see that the technician has put plastic down to protect the flooring. The technician has measured and marked the drywall so that there will be an even cut. The drywall is being removed at 24.5" from the ground to make repairs easier.

After removing the drywall, the technician will also remove and bag any affected insulation. Then he will apply an antimicrobial agent to kill any bacteria that came in with the water.

Happy Holidays from SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties

12/24/2018 (Permalink)

Have a safe holiday season!

At SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties we want to wish you a happy and safe holiday season! Please keep these Christmas Tree Fire Safety Tips in mind during this holiday season!

1. If you use a live tree, choose one with fresh green needles that do not fall off when touched and keep it watered to make it last.

2. When purchasing an artificial tree, be sure it is labeled as fire-retardant.

3. When decorating your tree replace any string of lights with worn or broken cords or loose bulb connections.

4. Place your tree it at least three feet away from any heat source including your fireplace, heaters and candles. 

5. Never leave Christmas tree lights on if the tree is unattended. Unplug them when you go to bed or leave the home.

6. Make sure your smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors are operating properly.

Have a safe and joyful holiday season!!

SERVPRO is Ready to Go

12/18/2018 (Permalink)

Our water van is loaded to the brim with drying equipment to make this commercial water damage, "Like it never even happened."

In this photo, you can see SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties loaded with equipment to mitigate a commercial water damage. The building owner called us when water seeped into one unit from under the walls of another. Our SERVPRO technicians were able to quickly respond to extract the water, clean the carpets and set our state of the art equipment.

Technicians use air movers such as the ones photographed to remove moisture from building materials. Our air movers are designed to move a high volume air very quickly to promote fast drying. The customer was thrilled with how quickly the technicians arrived onsite and how rapidly the structure was restored to preloss condition. If your commercial property experiences a water damage call us at 219-779-7577!

SERVPRO volunteering at the Foodbank of Northwest Indiana

12/10/2018 (Permalink)

You can see our Sales and Marketing Representative, Jay, on the right side of the photo.

As a locally owned and operated business, we pride ourselves in being active in our community. Recently, we had the opportunity to volunteer as part of the EPIC Committee with the Crossroads Regional Chamber of Commerce. The EPIC Committee organized the event so that as many people as possible could partner with the Food Bank of Northwest Indiana. The Food Bank of Northwest Indiana has been providing critical food assistance to individuals and families in need since 1982, and is currently the only food bank serving Lake and Porter counties.

Our Sales and Marketing Representative, Jay, said she thoroughly enjoyed the event. As we approach the holiday season, consider making a donation at foodbanknwi.org/growinghope to benefit families in Lake and Porter County. If you need assistance, you can also find a pantry on their website at https://foodbanknwi.org/get-help/find-a-pantry/

Dangers Of Mold

10/4/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Growth in Kitchen.

At SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties we care about the health of those in the community.  Mold in a home is more serious than just an ugly problem. 

According to the CDC by definition, actively-growing mold damages the material it lives on, thereby impairing structural integrity. In addition, mold is associated with some health effects in humans, including allergies and infections. Some health effects attributed to mold may in fact be caused by bacteria, dust mites, etc., found in mold-colonized environments.  Therefore mold growth in homes, schools, and businesses should be eliminated for the sake of human health, structural integrity, and quality of life.

If you suspect that you have mold in your home, call the professionals of SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties at 219-779-7577!  Our technicians are highly trained to perform on site mold testing and remediation.  

We Have It All In St. John!

9/4/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties quickly respond to a flood in a St. John, Indiana home.

At SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties we have all types of equipment to quickly and efficiently clean up after a water loss.  When a the pipe for an outdoor water source for a garden brakes the water can quickly find its self in your basement.  In order to prevent secondary water damage, crews work quickly to extract water from the floor.  Using a truck mounted machine along with several smaller extractors crew can remove water in a matter of hours.  SERVPRO technicians then set up high power dehumidifiers to remove the excess moisture, along with industrial air movers to dry.  This process allows are technicians to dry your home the most efficient way possible.  Our goal here at SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties is to make it "Like It Never Happened".  Please call our friendly office staff at 21-779-7577 for more information on water mitigation. 

Smoke and Soot Damage

8/30/2018 (Permalink)

Dryer fire in University Park, IL.

Fuel, Oxygen, and heat is the perfect storm for complete combustion. However usually a complete combustion does not occur in a house fire, smoke residue or soot is produced. Soot is the product of incomplete combustion. Smoke is the fuel that didn’t burn, made visible by the presence of carbon and other material.

Smoke may seem to dissipate quickly after a fire, but the reality is the rapid cooling of incomplete combustion leaves a film and a odor that penetrates throughout the building. This film can cause discoloration, corrosion, and overall damage.

We at SERVPRO understand that, when a fire occurs, lives are suddenly turned around. Fire is an unpredictable beast that can result in a great deal of loss. The restoration industry has learned that the longer a structure is allowed to remain affected by smoke and soot, the cost incurred increases drastically. Therefore, it is so critical to respond quickly. It is our priority to return the structure to a preloss condition, without causing any additional damage.

SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties can help in your time of need! Call 219-779-7577!

When Hot Water Heaters Behave Badly!

7/7/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton, and Southern Lake Counties is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for water emergencies, large or small.  When you are dealing with water damage, immediate action is crucial.  A delay of just a few hours can greatly increase the severity of the water damage.

When a water heater bursts all the water inside can wreak havoc on flooring, drywall, and personal belongings.  It is very important to give SERVPRO a call right away since within just a few days of a water damage mold can and will begin to grow.  SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton, and Southern Lake Counties is here to help make it "Like it never even happened."  

For immediate assistance please call our friendly office staff at (219) 779-7577.

Water Damage in Crown Point

6/14/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties is here to help! Recently, we were called to a business in Crown Point, IN for a water mitigation project. A frozen pipe had broken and water caused the ceiling and drywall to collapse. 

Whether your business or your home has water damage, we always respond quickly. The longer your structure is wet, the more damage is done and the higher the cost is incurred. Excess moisture in your structure can cause building materials to weaken, warp, rot and decay. Elevated moisture levels help mold grow. The longer water sits, the more bacteria is present and the less we are able to save.

This Crown Point business immediately asked SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties for assistance.  We were able to control the damage and immediately begin water mitigation. They were able to continue working and were very happy with our services.  

Respond immediately when you have water damage! Call 219-779-7577 for all of your water mitigation needs!

Business in Valparaiso has multiple leaks in roof

6/6/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties arrived in Valparaiso to assess water damage from an ice dam. After remediation began, multiple leaks were found. SERVPRO was able to help! Due to water saturation, ceiling tiles, insulation and drywall needed to be removed. Cabinets were also removed. 

Only portions of several rooms were affected. Our crew built containment around the affected areas and worked within the containment. The crew set air scrubbers to ensure no one would get sick during the mitigation process. On the outside of the containment, business continued. Our customer was happy she did not have to close for any time so that she could continue serving her customers.

If you have a commercial property and have a need for water mitigation services, call us at (219)779-7577. SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton, and Southern Lake Counties is committed to minimizing business interruptions as much as possible!

Bathroom Leak in Crown Point

5/30/2018 (Permalink)

After vacationing, a family in Crown Point came home to a leak in the bathroom. SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties was able to help! The leak started when the supply line to the bathtub on the second floor broke. The water then went through to the dining room on the first floor and into the basement.

When SERVPRO arrived onsite, we set up a containment in the dining room to shrink the area being dried. Holes were drilled into the ceiling so that air would blow directly on the second floor subfloor to improve drying times. Floor drying systems were used on the hardwood floors in the dining room and the tile floors in the bathroom to vacuum the water out. Dehumidifiers were placed on all three levels to dry the air.

SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties was able to dry this home in two days and save all of the flooring. The homeowner was thrilled with the minimal interruption and reconstruction required.

Injectidry used to dry bathroom flooring

5/18/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties is here to help! Recently during a storm, SERVPRO was called to a home in Crown Point, IN. Sump pump failure had caused the basement to flood. Multiple rooms were affected. Laminate flooring had to be removed because it had a vapor barrier underneath it which prevents us from drying the laminate. The carpet had to be lifted to remove the pad which can hold bacteria from the water. After drying is complete, the homeowner can install new pad and reuse the carpet. In the bathroom, Injectidry equipment was used to dry the tile floors. 

When you have flooding or damage from water to your home, it is important to call us for help immediately. The sooner we can begin water mitigation, the more money and stress the homeowner can be saved. The longer the water sits in your home, the more damage it can cause. For any water mitigation needs, call 219-779-7577 and our SERVPRO professionals will respond immediately.

Mold after a Storm Situation in Florida

4/18/2018 (Permalink)

As winter and winter storms come to an end in Northwest Indiana, we are reminded of a storm situation in Florida. SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton, and Southern Lake Counties was again able to help! Our crews traveled to Florida to help the residents of that state. Hurricane Irma put many Florida residents in need of water mitigation. We were happy to help them!

In Jacksonville, Florida, a home flooded because of storm surge from Hurricane Irma.  Mold was visible on all drywall throughout the home.  Drywall, plaster, tile, and insulation were removed. Air scrubbers, dehumidifiers, and air movers were used to dry the home after the nonsalvageable building materials had been torn out. The home was stabilized for reconstruction.

SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton, and Southern Lake Counties was able to help dozens of homeowners after Hurricane Irma. Please call 219-779-7577 for all of your mold remediation needs! We are able to immediately assist in emergency storm situations!

New HEPA Vacuums Arrive

4/11/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton, and Southern Lake Counties is adding new equipment to our inventory. Upgrading inventory means that we are able to help more customers more quickly. Recently, two new backpack HEPA vacuums were purchased. The HEPA vacuums are used in mold remediation to remove tiny spores that aren’t visible to the naked eye. Mold can be harmful to the occupants of the building and to our employees during remediation.

We make sure that all of our employees take every precaution with the customers’ health, as well as their own. All employees wear tyvek suits and respirators during mold remediation. Our employees have increased movement and agility with the backpack HEPA vacuum. This allows them to treat mold in attics, crawlspaces and other tight areas.

The health and well-being of our customers and employees is very important to us! If you need help with mold remediation, call 219-779-7577! SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton, and Southern Lake Counties is ready to help!

Ice dam causes Water Damage to Home

4/11/2018 (Permalink)

Winter in Northwest Indiana is coming to an end! This winter season had many storms that caused damage to homes in the area. SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton, and Southern Lake Counties was here to help! Our crews were on standby to help the residents of these counties in a storm situation.

One home in Schererville, IN, had an ice dam form on the roof. Water seeped into the attic and walls. Snow needed to be removed from the roof so that the source of the water could be taken care of.

Our crew was onsite to make sure all water was extracted and to dry the walls, ceiling, and floors. The wet insulation needed to be removed from the walls and ceilings.

SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties can help you in a storm situation! You can call us at 219-779-7577 for all of your water mitigation needs.  

Storms Cause Roof to Leak

3/26/2018 (Permalink)

Northwest Indiana was hit with heavy snow in February of 2018. SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties was able to help many customers after ice dams formed.

The roof leaked in this school in Valparaiso, IN. After the source of the leak was repaired, SERVPRO was able to mitigate the attic and classroom. The wet ceiling tiles and insulation were removed. Our equipment was placed to dry and dehumidify the area. The hot air from our dehumidifier was ducted up to concentrate the air on just the affected framing. The building owner was able to use her classroom throughout the drying process. In this image, you can see the containment zone built over the hole in the ceiling and leading to the attic of the building. We are not only able to help with your water loss, but we will do our best so that you can continue with your day to day routine. When we leave, it will be “Like it never even happened.”

Record Rainfall Hits Northwest Indiana

3/19/2018 (Permalink)

Our technician is wearing protective gear while removing layers of carpet from this flooded home in Saint John, Indiana.

In February, Northwest Indiana was hit with heavy snow followed by several days of rain. The ground was still frozen and rainwater had nowhere to go.

SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties were ready to assist in this storm situation! Our crews were out day and night to help as many people as possible.

One home in Saint John had water seep in through the patio doors.  Our crew pulled up two layers of carpet to reach the concrete subfloor. The carpet was disposed of due to water damage. In situations like this, our employees use personal protective equipment to ensure their own safety. In this picture, you see our employee wearing a face mask, shoe covers, gloves and a Tyvek suit. This minimizes the chance that she will get sick from the water while completing remediation.

If you need help with a water loss in your home or business, call 219-779-7577. SERVPRO is here to help!

Fire Damage in Chesterton

3/15/2018 (Permalink)

Recently, SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties was asked to respond to a fire damage in Chesterton, IN. The home had smoke and soot damage from a water heater that caught fire. All of the home’s structural surfaces and contents were covered with a thin layer of black soot.

Our trained professionals were able to determine which items could be cleaned to preloss condition and which items would have to be replaced.

There are several methods for cleaning smoke and soot damage. One method is dry cleaning which is used any time a material will not survive wet cleaning or has only a little amount of soot/dirt. First, any excess soot is vacuumed. Then the crews use either a pre-treated cloth to wipe the item or a dry cleaning sponge. Both processes work well on books, paper, cardboard, photos, and wood.

If dry cleaning does not restore an item to preloss condition then the crews will switch to wet cleaning which is more aggressive. The wallpaper photographed was first dry cleaned and then wet cleaned. The crew will first pre-test several products to determine which will work based on the specific type of soot you have and confirm it will not damage the surface being cleaned. In this picture, you can see the difference as we cleaned the wall.

SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton, and Southern Lake Counties can help with all smoke or soot damage! Call 219-779-7577 so we can help!

What is Indoor Air Quality?

3/1/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton, and Southern Lake Counties is here to help you with your Indoor Air Quality (IAQ). The air in your home, building, structure is referred to as Indoor Air Quality (IAQ).

Different pollutants can affect the IAQ of your home.  Dust mites and other allergens are only a few examples. Mold also can affect your IAQ.

While it is possible to control some pollutants on your own, calling in professionals can give you peace of mind. SERVPRO is here to help!

Mold and mold spores are hard to contain and/or eliminate on your own. You can be assured that SERVPRO professionals are able to eliminate mold quickly and efficiently.

Identifying if you have mold is the first concern. SERVPRO uses an IAQ agent to determine if mold is present. This picture shows the bubbling reaction that occurs when our special agent and mold interact.

Call SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton, and Southern Lake Counties for all your mold remediation needs! We will be happy to help! Call us at (219)779-7577.

Creating your Non-Salvageable List after Mold

2/21/2018 (Permalink)

In this home, the mold spores spread to the contents of the room.

SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties is available for mold remediation in your home or business. Not only can mold affect the structure of your home, it can also affect the contents in your home. 

SERVPRO can help! Total loss items are items that cannot be restored to their original condition before mold growth. For instance, you could have clothes that are covered in mold. Restoring your clothes to their original condition would be impossible due to the porous nature of the material. They would then be classified as non-salvageable or total loss items. If your item is deemed non-salvageable, we will designate that in your inventory. 

With our inventory software, we are able to separate your items into different groups to help facilitate your claim with your insurance company. We are able to create an inventory of your non-salvageable items to help you receive the compensation needed.

SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties is available to help! Call us at 219-779-7577 for all your mold remediation needs!

Restoring Contents after a Fire

2/13/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO deals with contents after a house fire in IL.

SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton, and Southern Lake Counties is ready to help in the case of a fire. Fires not only cause damage to your house but they also cause damage to the contents of your home. Know that your concerns will be taken care of with SERVPRO.  

Many of your items might be covered in soot, ash, or debris from the fire. We can help. When cleaning contents after a fire, SERVPRO uses several different proprietary cleaners to restore your items. Technicians are trained to select the right cleaner based on the material of the item being cleaned and the type of soot on the item. A porcelain plate, a book and an antique wooden dresser all react differently to a fire and need to be cleaned accordingly. Our certified technicians are taught to determine the right cleaning process for each item in your home.

Unfortunately, not all items can be restored to preloss condition. SERVPRO examines each item to look for fine cracks and stains that cannot be reversed with just cleaning. Some items are refinished and others may need to have parts replaced. Any item that cannot be cleaned to preloss condition is documented so that it can be replaced. We understand that some items are irreplaceable. For irreplaceable items that cannot be restored to preloss condition, our crews are often able to make significant improvements on the appearance and odor of an item that has been in a fire. Crews are trained to inform you of any items that can only be partially restored so that you can decide if you want us to attempt cleaning.

We also use ultrasonic cleaning to restore your items. This is a very detailed cleaning using ultrasonic wave technology. Every crevice of your item will be cleaned. 

Your items might have an odor. Proper cleaning removes the odor from some materials. Others are treated with ozone or hydroxyls, both of which react with odor molecules to neutralize them. All contents are put through the “sniff test” prior to being packaged for return.

Call SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton, and Southern Lake Counties for all of your fire restoration needs at 219-779-7577!

Demolition Required after Fire in Cedar Lake

2/13/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties was called out to Cedar Lake, IN, after a fire devastated a home.  The whole house was affected by the fire. The fire damaged the building materials to the point where they had to be torn out and replaced. The ceiling collapsed during the fire and had to be removed. Baseboards and drywall had to be removed due to charting. Carpet and carpet pad had to be removed because of staining from the soot. The tile floor had to be removed to access the wet plywood. The plywood subfloor was not salvageable because it was buckling. Our technicians removed the doors and frames because they warped. The fire caused the bulk of the damage. There was additional damage from the water used to put the fire out. Demolition was necessary to make this home livable again. SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties was able to help! Call us at 219-779-7577 for your fire mitigation, water mitigation, mold remediation needs. We also restore contents!

Chimney Fire Damages Home in Lake Village, IN

2/13/2018 (Permalink)

Air Movers Placed in Home in Lake Village, IN

SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton, and Southern Lake Counties is here to help! A chimney fire broke out in a home in Lake Village, IN. There was a hole in the chimney that an ember went through to catch the insulation on fire.

The building was very wet and needed to be dried. This was difficult due to much of the insulation in the roof being torn out. The roof was tarped to prevent rain from coming in. Due to the season, temperatures were very low in the home. SERVPRO brought in temporary heaters to warm the house up enough for drying. Each temporary heater is capable of producing as much heat as the furnace in your home!

SERVPRO is certified by the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) in Fire and Smoke Restoration, Water Restoration and Applied Structural Drying. The IICRC’s standards guide our technicians through the process of drying your home. Each drying job requires a careful balance of temperature and humidity to dry wet building materials. On fires the crews must also clean the air with negative air filtration devices. You can trust that our certified technicians are capable of evaluating your home and drying it to preloss condition. 

Call SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton, and Southern Lake Counties for all your fire restoration needs at 219-779-7577!

Extraction Teamwork After Commercial Water Damage

2/9/2018 (Permalink)

In this photo, you can see two of our technicians working into the late hours of the night to extract water faster so this hospital can resume normal

SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southen Lake Counties called in all of our crews after receiving a call from a hospital in Crown Point, Indiana. Serval thousand square feet of standing water was in their urgent care facility and patient rooms. Our crews worked quickly overnight to remove as much water as possible to have the areas open for business less than 24 hours after the initial call. While our truck mount can handle most extraction jobs by itself, we broke out multiple extractors for this job. The technician on the right is using a weighted extractor which works best on short pile carpet. It is using her body weight to remove more water in a single pass. The technician on the left is using a wand to extract water. It works best for areas that are hard to reach, like closets and corners. It can also be used for hard surfaces. Other technicians (not photographed) are using submersible pumps and squeegees. You can trust that SERVPRO has the right tools to make it "Like it never even happened."

SERVPRO Uses High Capacity Dehumidifiers to Dry Structures

2/9/2018 (Permalink)

The 270HTX dehumidifier in action in St Augustine, Florida

SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties is committed to using the best equipment available for each job. This photo was taken by one of our traveling crews at a job in St Augustine, Florida. The dehumidifier pictured is a 270HTX. It is capable of removing 161 pints per day of water at AHAM (80°F 60% RH). Most dehumidifiers work best between 70 degrees and 90 degrees Farenheight. This dehumidifier is capable of removing moisture from the air between 33 degrees and 125 degrees Fahrenheit. The dehumidifier contains an automatic bypass door that adjusts the mode based on the temperature. It was ideal for this job because the temperature was above 90 degrees outside for the duration of the job. The customer was happy with how quickly the structure dried

Mold on Kitchen Cabinets

2/9/2018 (Permalink)

Visible mold inside the vanity of a home after flooding.

Mold can cause serious damage to your home or business. The photo shows mold that has grown on the bathroom cabinets from a recent project. Mold is capable of growing on most building materials. Left unaddressed, mold will eventually destroy everything it grows on. Delayed or improper treatment of mold issues can multiply repair costs exponentially. Mold growth is caused by elevated moisture levels. The first step to removing mold is to correct the moisture problem. In the photographed case, the moisture came in from a hurricane. Crews worked quickly to set dehumidifiers to reduce the humidity in the building. Then they removed the affected building materials. Finally, they treated the framing and subfloors with an antimicrobial to eliminate any remaining mold and microbial growth.

What is Mold?

2/9/2018 (Permalink)

This photo shows several different types of mold growing on the subfloor.

Mold is a type of fungi, organisms that have characteristics of both plants and animals. Most types of molds are harmless but many can cause illnesses, particularly in people who have sensitivities. There are thousands of types of mold out there and often more than one type will grow in the same area. Mold is incredibly small, but the colonies can grow to be huge. It is particularly dangerous because it can grow undetected for long periods of time under floors, in wall cavities and in ductwork. SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties often discovers mold in the middle of cleaning up after a water damage because it tends to grow on the inside of walls before it is visible on the outside. 

Heavy Soot Damage From Fire in South Holland, Indiana

2/7/2018 (Permalink)

Heavy soot covers this bathroom even though it is one of the furthest rooms from the source.

When a candle tipped over in the basement of this South Holland home the adjacent contents caught on fire. No one was hurt despite how quickly the flames spread throughout the structure. This before photo shows one of the furthest rooms from the source which has a heavy coating of soot. When a fire burns it releases a smoke with particles from the items that it consumed that settle on anything nearby. A thick black coating is evidence that the fire had little access to oxygen while it was burning. The streaks on the glass in the mirror are from the high humidity introduced when the fire fighters used water to put the flames out. While this fire looks bad, our certified technicians were able to clean and restore the homeowner's most precious contents to make it, "Like it never even happened."

Barbecue Fire Damage in Olympia Fields, Illinois

2/7/2018 (Permalink)

This home caught fire after a barbecue wasn't completely extinguished after use.

Last fall this homeowner in Olympia Fields didn't realize that the flame wasn't completely out after making dinner until his house went up in flames several hours later. The embers smoldered until the wind caught them just right and they landed on the deck, catching it on fire. Fortunately the smoke alarms did their job and alerted the family in time to escape without anyone getting hurt. After the fire department put out the blaze, the customer contacted SERVPRO to mitigate the property. Our crews were onsite within 4 hours of the initial call to set drying equipment to minimize the chance of microbial growth. SERVPRO technicians also packed the salvageable contents so they could be cleaned and insurance could compile a total loss inventory.

Equipment Used For Water Damage

2/7/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties can help when you have flooding or any water damage to your home. We have different equipment that we use to make sure that your home is dry and safe.

Dehumidifiers are used to pull water out of the air. They evaporate the water and the moisture in your home goes down. Dehumidifiers help to maintain the correct amount of moisture in the air to prevent conditions for mold to grow.

Air Movers circulate the air around the room so the other equipment can do their job. They help in drying out water and keeping the air circulating at a high velocity.

Air scrubbers are used to filter the air and remove any particle, odors, and chemicals from the air.

Call SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties at 219-779-7577 when you need help with any of your water damage needs!

Fork Lift Training

2/6/2018 (Permalink)

In this photo, you can see Angela practicing with the forklift.

Have you ever wondered how we move and store your water or fire damaged contents during the restoration process? Each customer's contents are stored separately in vaults in our insured, climate-controlled facility. Our technicians are routinely certified to use our forklift to move those vaults from the receiving area to the cleaning area, deodorization area, and storage area.

During the training, each technician first learns how to safely enter the forklift and use the seat belt. Then they are taught how to raise, tilt and lower the forks. Finally, they are taught how to safely move the forklift forward and in reverse. By the end of the 4-hour training, each technician is able to carefully move your personal property throughout the warehouse and our cleaning process.

Pipe Burst in Dyer Indiana

2/6/2018 (Permalink)

The equipment shown is used to vaccuum out water from between the tiles and subfloor.

A draft hit just the right spot in a bathroom wall in Dyer to cause two pipes to burst. Water flowed from the top level of the home into each room of the house before the homeowner got back to discover the problem. Our IICRC certified technician was onsite within hours of the initial call to extract water and stabilize the property. The customer was thrilled with our "excellent" service. Thanks to SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties' quick response time and specialty equipment the tile floors were saved! The adjuster was pleased with how little had to be torn out despite the large affected area. Since so much was saved, the homeowners are able to stay onsite for the duration of the repairs.

Hurricane Irma Cleanup

2/6/2018 (Permalink)

Drying equipment was set to dry this Florida home after hurricane Irma.

SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties sent several crews to Florida to help cleanup after Hurricane Irma. Our IICRC certified technicians drove across the country with vehicles loaded to the brim with drying equipment, antimicrobial and PPE to help make it, "Like it never even happened." While in Florida our crews helped both residential and commercial customers stabilize and dry their properties. The home shown in this loss suffered minimal damage but had to be dried nonetheless. After a thorough moisture inspection, the production manager determined only the sunroom and detached utility room got wet. The crew followed to remove the wet building materials and set drying equipment. The customer was pleased with the service he received and the quick drying time.

Multiple Pipe Bursts at Hospital in Crown Point Indiana

2/6/2018 (Permalink)

Patients had to be removed from the area until cleanup was completed after the sprinkler pipe burst.

Cold weather doesn't discriminate between residential and commercial buildings! When temperatures dropped below freezing early this year the sprinkler system at a hospital froze causing water damage throughout their urgent care facilities. Water flooded the waiting room, patient rooms, hallways and treatment rooms. SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties was contacted to extract water so that the urgent care center could reopen less than 24 after the initial break. While multiple crews were working overnight, the fire department was dispatched because a second pipe broke by the front lobby. SERVPRO adjusted the mitigation plan to include extracting the front foyer to prevent secondary damage while still cleaning up the urgent care area in time to receive patients by the original deadline.

Basketball Court in Basement Floods

1/18/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties scored some points on the basketball court. We were called in for sump pump failure and water damage to a basement. This was no ordinary basement. The basement was equipped with a unique basketball court and 17’ ceilings. Water had seeped into the tiles and padding underneath.  The owner was concerned that there would be mold. We had to throw away the rubber padding and rubber base because they would prevent the materials behind them from drying. The tiles were detached and cleaned with an antimicrobial agent. Carpeting lined the walls. We were able to dry the carpeting in place. Air movers were brought in to dry the carpeting and the cement floor.  SERVPRO was proud to make this unique basement safe for the homeowner. 

Extreme Cold Sweeps the Country

1/18/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton & Southern Lake Counties is available to help you with water damage to your commercial business property. Extremely cold water hit the Midwest hard this winter.  Commercial property owners as well as homeowners were affected by the frigid weather.  Many business owners found pipes bursting throughout their businesses. At this business in Dyer, IN, the linen closet needed to have the rubber base removed. SERVPRO was in and out within days and business was not affected. SERVPRO is here to help with all your needs. If your home has fire or water damage, we can help. When your business is affected by water or fire, we can help. Call 1-219-779-7577 when you have an emergency in your commercial property!

Heavy Rains Flood Pole Barn

12/15/2017 (Permalink)

Heavy rains hit the town of Boswell causing flooding in a commercial pole barn. The barn owner reached out to SERVPRO and SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties arrived ready to work!  This basement had four different rooms and all four had standing Category 3 water. The walls, contents and floors were affected in this Class 2 water scenario. The crew set up our portable extractor and were able to remove all of the water. After the extraction of the water, an antimicrobial was applied to the entire level. The basement was ready for further work.  SERVPRO is always here to help! We are ready to help you!  If you need help at your commercial property, call us at 219-779-7577. 

Water Damage Can Happen Anywhere

10/18/2017 (Permalink)

This photo shows the home after crews removed the wet building materials. Multiple crews worked long hours to make it "Like it Never Even Happened!"

This home flooded during Hurricane Irma. The homeowner tried to stay and weather the storm but ultimately had to escape out a window after the river in his backyard overflowed its banks into his home. Mold quickly spread throughout the home on the affected drywall, paneling, carpet, and cabinets.

Our crews were dispatched by the SERVPRO corporate Storm Team to help remediate the house. Our trained SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake County technicians promptly removed the affected building materials and cleaned the remaining structure to prevent microbial growth.

While several crews traveled to help in Florida, local crews remained to service Saint John, Cedar Lake, Lowell, Demotte, Rensselaer, and Kentland. If you have storm or water damage to your home call us at 219-779-7577

Moisture Meters

6/20/2017 (Permalink)

This photo was taken while the crew performed their initial inspection at a commercial loss.

Just because something appears dry does not mean there is not mold producing moisture within the walls. Mold can grow can an incredible rate so making sure that moisture is removed properly is very important. If moisture is not controlled, a small water mitigation project could turn into a massive problem.

At SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton, and Southern Lake Counties, we use moisture meters to detect moisture to make sure everything is dried to preloss condition. The meters are very sensitive and are tuned to pick up any moisture within drywall, carpet, structural wood, and other porous objects. Technicians use this data to determine if the materials are affected. Based on the type of water, technicians are able to determine which building materials can be saved.

Steam Cleaning After Sewage Loss in Saint John, Indiana

6/8/2017 (Permalink)

Steam cleaning affected concrete after a water damage.

Sewage can back up into your home if there is a clog in the drain lines or after heavy rains. When sewage invades your home, our crews are trained to follow IICRC guidelines to restore your property. First, the crews apply an antimicrobial to all affected surfaces to reduce the chance that bacteria and mold will spread. Then the crews remove any building materials they cannot clean such as carpet, pad, drywall and insulation. All materials are bagged up so that the water cannot spread to unaffected areas of the home. Next, our technicians apply antimicrobial to the building materials that can be cleaned and sanitized, such as structural wood and concrete. Finally, the crews steam clean the concrete and structural wood to kill any remaining bacteria/mold spores. 

Commercial Carpet Cleaning

6/8/2017 (Permalink)

In the photo you can see the crews have set up corner protectors to make sure the hoses don't rub against the doorways.

Commercial carpet cleaning is typically a very involved process. In order to adequately clean space to prevent secondary damage and possible mold growth, you need a team of highly trained professionals who can analyze each situation, set forth a plan of action, and execute the plan in a timely and efficient manner. As seen above, our technicians are preparing for a cleaning but using safety guards to make sure there is no damage to your business. Next step, the high capacity equipment is wheeled in while cleaning begins. These vast commercial spaces often require high capacity equipment to effectively clean the moisture out of the room. If the moisture in the air is not removed effectively, the time to dry is increase dramatically, which means more money out of your pocket.

SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton, and Southern Lake Counties is at the ready for all your carpet cleaning needs by utilizing the best equipment and anti-microbial solutions available. Call us today for an estimate on your commercial cleaning job!

Sump Pump Failure

6/1/2017 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Response Van

Wow! 24/7 care came in handy for this Schererville couple that had an emergency call after hours. No worries, SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake counties was on the case! As water was rushing in from an unexpected sump pump failure, SERVPRO technicians acted quickly to drain the unwanted water from their basement. If the team did not respond quickly with high volume and reliable equipment, the couple’s musical instruments would have been ruined. Once the water was receding thanks to the team’s quick response time, restoration was able to commence. The team removed the carpet and baseboards and discovered mold. The highly trained team treated the mold, steam cleaned the floor, and applied anti microbial solutions until the basement was restored.

It was “Like it never even happened.”

Ultrasonic Cleaning

4/18/2017 (Permalink)

These contents were just cleaned with our ultrasonic system.

Ultrasonic cleaning is used to clean many contents after they have been in a fire, smoke, water or mold damage. At SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties we have a 4 part system. The first tank is our prewash tank which uses compressed air and chemicals to remove the bulk of debris on contents. The second tank is our ultrasonic tank which uses two generators to create very tiny bubbles with sound waves. When those bubbles collide with the contents they collapse and suck the dirt, soot or debris off of the content. The third tank is a rinse tank with deionized water which removes the chemicals used for cleaning. The fourth component of our system is a drying cabinet which is powerful enough to dry electronics before they rust. With our ultrasonic system, we are able to process a higher volume of contents more quickly than our competitors. If you need your contents cleaned, call us at 219-779-7577!

Personal Protective Equipment for Mold Remediation

4/12/2017 (Permalink)

This SERVPRO of Benton, Japser, Newton and Southern Lake Counties technician is ready to take care of mold in this Saint John, Indiana home.

Mold remediation is often necessary after water damages that sit undiscovered for a length of time. Mold can grow quickly on damp or wet building materials provided the right conditions are met. There are hundreds of different species of mold and each species requires different conditions to thrive. While most mold species prefer warm, humid environments with little to no air movement; certain mold species can grow in cooler and drier environments. Some molds produce toxins which are harmful if breathed in or ingested. Our crews wear special personal protective equipment while remediating mold to reduce their exposure.

In the photo to the right, you can see one of our crew members dressed to do mold remediation. He is wearing a Tyvek suit and gloves which are puncture resistant and can be disposed of after he finishes working. He is also wearing a full face respirator which will filter the air and prevent him from breathing in mold spores while he works. At SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties we take mold and safety seriously. We always recommend that our customers stay out of the work area while mold is being remediated. If you think you have mold in your home, call us at 219-779-7577 to take care of it for you.

Building Containment to Protect Unaffected Areas - Water Damage

4/10/2017 (Permalink)

The customer was ecstatic that he was able to cook in his kitchen without fear of dust in his food while our crews worked just a few feet away

Sometimes our crews need to move through unaffected areas of a home or business to get debris from the affected area to a disposal site. When that happens, our crews build containment chambers to prevent dust from spreading to the unaffected areas. Containment chambers are also built to reduce the amount of air being dried, which can speed up drying times.

On this job in Lowell, a previous homeowner improperly installed a roof by nailing through the shingles, which allowed water to come into the home. The insulation in the attic had to be removed. But the access point for the attic was in the back of the house, and the shortest path to the dumpster led through the unaffected family room and kitchen. The crews used plastic sheeting to construct containment so that the living areas would not be contaminated.

Flooded Garage Basement in Lowell

3/27/2017 (Permalink)

A recent storm left this basement with several feet of water.

A sump pump failure in this detached garage in Lowell, Indiana led to several feet of water in the basement. This before photo shows that crews could not access the majority of the garage basement until the water was pumped out. Due to gasoline and paint mixing with the water, an oily film was visible on the water which meant it had to be treated differently than a normal sump pump failure. SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties was called in to remove the water and clean the space so that it could be safely used again. SERVPRO also had the affected electrical tested and replaced as needed so that the sump pump would work. The customer was impressed that SERVPRO was able to quickly evaluate the situation and communicate with insurance to verify coverage.

Thermal Imaging on a Water Damage in Lowell

3/20/2017 (Permalink)

This thermal imaging photo shows that the ceiling is cooler where it is wet. The thermal imaging camera helped identify the wet areas.

Water damage restoration has advanced a lot over the course of SERVPRO's history. One tool we use to locate moisture is a thermal imaging camera. On many jobs it is easy to see water damage because water can warp wood, bubble paint and break drywall. On jobs like this water damage from a recent storm the damage was not visible to the naked eye.

The customer called us when a recent storm blew sections of her roof off. She said that she thought a small section of her carpet was wet but was not sure how extensive the water was or how it got onto her carpet since her ceiling looked unaffected. With a thermal imaging camera and moisture meters the crew checked the ceilings, walls and floors throughout the home. They discovered that water made its way through the ceiling in the living room near the light fixture (photo) onto the carpet below. They also confirmed that the master bedroom ceiling was affected.

Thermal imaging cameras work by evaluating the temperature of a given surface compared to the temperature of the surfaces nearby. Usually wet surfaces are colder than the surfaces nearby. Cooler temperatures on a thermal image do not guarantee moisture is present so all suspected wet areas are checked with a moisture meter to confirm if an area is wet. Our technicians are trained on how to use thermal imaging cameras and moisture meters to locate both the water you see and the water you don't. If you need help locating the source of moisture in your home please call SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties at 219-779-7577!

24 Hour Emergency Response

3/17/2017 (Permalink)

This fire occurred in the middle of the night. Our crews were ready to respond and stabilize the property.

SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties is available 24 hours a day for fire emergencies, large or small. When you are dealing with fire damage, immediate action is crucial. A delay of just a few hours can greatly increase the severity of a fire damage.

A hole in the chimney caused this home to catch fire while the homeowner was out of town. We received the initial call in the middle of the night on a weekend and were onsite with crews within a few short hours. On this job, we were able to:

  • Secure the property by boarding and tarping
  • Quickly restore power to the home
  • Extract water and dry the structure to prevent further damage
  • Inventory, pack, clean and store salvageable contents
  • Update the insurance company and customer before they could be on site
  • Stabilize the structure and contents to prevent further damage

When the homeowner returned a week after the date of loss, he was shocked by how much we were able to accomplish while he was out of town. He was thankful that we were able to take care of his property so that he did not have to cut his vacation short.

We Answer the Phone Ready to Help
Call Today - 219-779-7577

We understand that when you call us, you may be feeling confused, stressed, and vulnerable. You need an expert to guide you through this crisis. SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties has the specific fire damage training and experience to help you through this tough time. We specialize in fire damage restoration—in fact, it's the cornerstone of our business.

What to Expect

When you call, we will ask several questions regarding your fire damage emergency. These questions will help us determine what equipment and resources to bring, including how many trained SERVPRO Professionals may be needed.

Our SERVPRO Representative will ask several questions:

  • Your name and contact information
  • Your insurance information (if applicable)
  • The street address of the fire-damaged home or business
  • When did the fire occur?
  • What caused the fire damage (if known)?
  • Is there electricity available (on-site)?

About SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties

SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake specializes in the cleanup and restoration of residential and commercial property after a fire, smoke or water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.


10 Tips for Removing Mold and Mildew

3/2/2017 (Permalink)

If you see mold near water pipes, waste lines, ice maker lines or plumbing fixtures, chances are the mold is feeding off a nearby leak.

Although we would prefer to call the pros, SERVPRO of Benton, Newton, Jasper & Southern Lake Counties, here are some DIY hacks that you can use to remove mold and mildew.

  1. Check for Plumbing Leaks

    If you see mold near water pipes, waste lines, ice maker lines or plumbing fixtures, chances are the mold is feeding off a nearby leak. Let the water run while you check the pipes and surrounding area for damp spots. Remember that water can travel in any direction—down, sideways or even up when it wicks into absorbent material like drywall—so the actual leak may be some distance from the mold.

  2. Don't Ignore Mold 

    Mold can be an early warning sign of a moisture problem inside walls or ceilings that could cause an expensive problem like wood rot. Avoid the temptation to just wipe the mold away and forget about it—find and stop the water source.

  3. Look for Outside Leaks

    If mold is growing on an exterior wall or ceiling, first look for a leak in the wall or roof. Measure from the moldy area to a reference point like a door, then find the spot on the other side of the wall or ceiling. Closely inspect nearby vents, roof flashing, decks, window wells and anywhere wood is rotting. Look for ground sloping toward the house and downspouts emptying next to the wall. If the ground around the house gets too wet, moisture will wick into the foundation or slab and become persistent dampness. Make sure you properly install flashing when you're fixing the leak.

  4. Inspect the Ductwork 

    If mold forms on the ceiling under a duct or register and there's no sign of a roof leak, badly insulated ductwork may be the cause. Warm, moist air condenses and forms water on ducts carrying cold air through the attic or crawl space. The condensation is a sign that the duct is uninsulated or missing a vapor barrier. Eventually the water saturates the insulation and drywall and mold spores (which are everywhere) take root. In cold weather, the reverse happens. Moisture forms anywhere warm air escapes—for instance, at unsealed joints between duct sections.

  5. Is it Mold or Dirt?

    Most mold is unmistakable, but sometimes small or largely hidden growths just make a surface look dirty. For a quick test, dip a swab in diluted bleach (1 part bleach, 16 parts water) and dab it on the wall. If the spot quickly lightens (or keeps coming back after cleaning), assume it's mold. Mold test kits are available that detect the presence and identify the type of mold, but they won't help determine the cause or what to do about it.

  6. Use an Antimicrobial Spray

    Once the moisture has been dried up, clean and spray the area with an antimicrobial treatment to prevent mold from coming back. In basements or other larger areas with musty odors, it may be more effective to fog the entire room. (Concrobium Mold Control is an antimicrobial treatment available at home centers and hardware stores that can be dispensed by spray or with a fogging machine.)

  7. Use Mold-Resistant Building Materials

    If you need to build or rebuild an area where moisture has been a problem, use materials that resist mold growth and aren't affected by water. Construct walls with pressure-treated wood and rigid insulation and cover the walls with paperless drywall, which has nothing for mold to feed on.

  8. Use Paint With Mildewcide

    In areas where mold might grow, such as basement walls, spray the surfaces with an antimicrobial treatment. Paint walls with mildew-resistant primer and paint or add mildewcide to your paint.

  9. Missing Insulation Feeds Mold

    Warm air seeks gaps in the insulation, and when it hits colder surfaces as it flows out of or into the house, water condenses—which then feeds mold. These spots often occur on outside walls near floors or windows, at corners and around outlets and lights. If the mold disappears after cleaning it and lowering indoor humidity with a dehumidifier or vent fan, just keep an eye on it. If it recurs, open the wall and fix the problem.

  10. Win the War Against Bathtub Mold 

    To prevent mold around the tub or shower, spray the wall with an antimicrobial treatment, then seal the grout with two coats of grout sealant to keep water from wicking in. If the mold is extensive and tiles come off, rebuild the wall with cement board tile backer and new tile. If the wall is sound but the mold stains won't go away, try regrouting. Scrape out the caulk and stained grout, spray the wall with antimicrobial treatment, regrout and caulk, and then coat the whole wall with grout sealant.

Can Mold Damage in Southern Lake Counties Attics Be Treated?

2/22/2017 (Permalink)

Can Southern Lake Counties Attics with Mold Infestation be Remediated?

If you have identified black mold in your attic, you’re bound to be wondering what your options are. Some companies will tell you that the only way to fix the problem is to replace a large portion of the roof. Others will tell you that the whole roof is unusable.

The reality is that, without a full and professional inspection, there is no way to tell for sure. SERVPRO has repaired and restored some of the most severe cases of mold damage in Southern Lake Counties homes. In our opinion, the damage has to be very extreme for a roof replacement to be the only viable response.

You are strongly advised to hire a remediation specialist first so that you can avoid the huge expense of a whole new roof.

Treating the Source of the Problem

The thing that you must remember about mold is that you can’t simply clean it away. The spores must be neutralized or the problem will come back. It doesn’t matter if you’ve spent hundreds of dollars on a new roof or not; if the spores are still active, the mold will reappear. SERVPRO uses high strength drying machines to fix the source of the damp before carrying out cleaning and neutralization procedures.

Containing the Spread of Spores

When you see mold growing on wood or other surfaces, you’re not really seeing the heart of the problem. It is the spores which spread the mold to other parts of the house. They move on draughts within the air and on clothes and other items if disturbed. This is why SERVPRO always sets up a containment area when dealing with mold damage. We use polyurethane sheets and air moving devices to prevent the spores from leaving the attic.

Neutralizing the Threat

After an inspection has been carried out, we’ll be able to tell you exactly how severe the mold damage is and how much of the attic can be saved. Usually, this is all or most of the roofing materials. Only in cases where the wood is extremely rotten will we advise you to think about a replacement. The likelihood is that we’ll be able to apply oxidizing chemicals which react with the mold and render it inert.

Locally Owned Company with National Resources

At SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton & Southern Lake Counties, we are committed to delivering the most cost effective repairs and mold damage solutions. We don’t want you to splash out on costly renovations if a remediation process is the better option. Call us 24/7 on (219) 779-7577 to arrange an inspection and get some answers.

Content Restoration: We Do That, Too!

2/16/2017 (Permalink)

Your home contains many of your most valuable possessions and houses those you love the most. Your business is your livelihood. The team at SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton & Southern Lake Counties understands just how trying, disruptive and traumatic major losses - such as a fire - can be.

As part of our fire restoration service, we don't just pay attention to the structure; we'll also help take care of the contents of your home or business, as well. Some of our contents services include:

Inventory – One of the first priorities in fire restoration is to complete an accurate inventory to help ensure you can properly account for all your belongings. Your SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton & Southern Lake Counties technician can provide a detailed room-by-room inventory of contents, including digital photographs and bar codes for each item, suitable for filing insurance claims forms and relieving you of this often stressful and time-consuming process.

Move Outs – When the structure has suffered extensive damage, the cleanup and restoration process may need to be facilitated by relocating the contents for cleaning, deodorization and storage while structural repairs are being completed. A supervised moving crew can carefully pack and move the entire contents of your home or office.

Contents Cleaning – All of the restorable contents in affected areas will be professionally cleaned and deodorized. This includes area rugs, furniture, draperies and upholstery. SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton & Southern Lake Counties technicians begin by carefully inspecting and testing all fabrics in the structure to determine which cleaning methods are most appropriate; we provide both wet or dry cleaning methods. Additionally, all the other restorable contents will be cleaned and deodorized to as near as preloss condition as possible; this includes electronics, art, wood furniture, kitchen items, clothing, bedding and much more.

When a fire takes control of your life, we help you take control back. Call SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton & Southern Lake Counties today: (219)779-7577

Insurance Professionals> When they call YOU, call on US!

2/15/2017 (Permalink)

"You're their hero in times of need"

When fire, water, or mold invade your insured's home, fear and frustration begin to build upon them.  Research indicates policyholders feel tremendous stress and loss of control after they suffer a loss.  By dispatching SERVPRO® of Benton, Jasper, Newton & Southern Lake Counties, you can be the HERO your policyholders value in their time of need.  Your clients appreciate your help!

Employing SERVPRO® of Benton, Jasper, Newton & Southern Lake Counties also provides you a competitive advantage.  Our 24-hour National Call Center phone line helps ensure your policyholders receive that voice of comfort when they need it most, night or day.

From the moment we set foot on-site, until the final item has been restored and set back into place, you can be sure you are providing much-needed comfort and relief in your policyholders' time of need.

You need a restoration vendor who will care for your policyholders and work to save you money through timely mitigation.  You need to keep claims costs down while helping ensure your policyholders get the best possible results.

The professionals at SERVPRO® of Benton, Jasper, Newton & Southern Lake Counties know restoring property is less expensive than replacing property, so they pre-test to determine which of your policyholders' treasured possessions can be restored to preloss condition.

Give SERVPRO® of Benton, Jasper, Newton & Southern Lake Counties a call and leave the restoration to us!  We're here to help.  We make it 'Like it never even happened®' .

What To Do In A Fire Emergency

2/15/2017 (Permalink)

Fire Damage

Fires can spread fast and cause immediate damage, but we at SERVPRO are here to help restore your home.  As with all natural disasters, you and your family should first assess the situation and determine if it is safe to stay in your home. If you decide to stay in your home, SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton & Southern Lake Counties would like to offer pertinent information to keep you safe while we are on our way to help.

After a fire, make sure to limit movement in your home, as soot particles can get embedded into upholstery and carpets.  We recommend placing clean towels or old linens on any rugs or upholstery. In this regard, keeping your hands clean will prevent further soiling to upholstery, walls and woodwork. As we mention on our website, if you have houseplants wash them on both sides of the leaves.  We also suggest changing the HVAC filter and taping double layers of cheesecloth over air registers.

However, there are several activities you should not to before we arrive. These include attempting to wash any walls or painted surfaces, or shampoo carpet or upholstery.  Avoid cleaning electrical appliances that may have been close to fire, heat or water.  You should also avoid using any canned or packaged food or beverages that may have been stored near the fire, heat or water.  If the ceiling is wet, do not turn on ceiling fixtures, as the wiring may be damaged.

Once our SERVPRO professionals arrive, we will handle the rest. We'll be there no matter the disaster- your safety is our main priority.

Preventing Kitchen Fires In Your Southern Lake Counties Home

2/15/2017 (Permalink)

Forty percent of home fires start in the kitchen.

Preventing Kitchen Fires

The kitchen is the busiest room in the house in many homes. It is where food is made and where families congregate to interact with one another and share meals. It is one of the most hazardous areas in the home when it comes to fires. Forty percent of home fires start in the kitchen. A fire can occur from cooking habits or appliances. Smaller appliances like toasters and microwaves cause fires, as well as the larger items. The easiest way to lower the possibility of a fire in your kitchen is to learn how to prevent them. You should also have a fire remediation company’s information on hand, such as SERVPRO, in the case of an emergency.

Prevention of fire and fire damage comes in many forms. No flammable items, for example, should be within three feet of your stove or oven in your Forest Hills home for prolonged periods of time. Keep pot holders, towels, oven mitts, and paper towels away from heat. Loose clothing while you are working at a stove isn't a good idea. Wipe burners and other surfaces on the stove or inside ovens regularly to clean off food particles, oil and other materials that can catch fire when hot. If you do have an accident in your kitchen with one of these items, our technicians at SERVPRO need to be made aware, so we can clean up the damage and restore your kitchen for you.

Utensils which have aluminum or foil, metal, or other objects which are metal-based need to be kept away from your microwave oven. Do not place paper products in your oven unless the instructions on the product say to do so. Exceptions can include pizza trays made for the oven. When using cooking oil, heating it on medium instead of high is much safer. Don't leave food cooking on the stove, either, as this is unsafe and the food can unexpectedly catch on fire. You should especially never walk away from food cooking in oil.

Replace any kitchen appliances that have damaged or frayed cords, since this raises the risk of short circuits and electrical fires. Ensure that children know the rules of kitchen safety and that they are tall enough to stand over the stove and see the whole area clearly before they can cook. They should also only do so under adult supervision.

In the case of accidents, anyone working in the kitchen needs to learn what kind of fire extinguisher that is required to put out kitchen fires. These dry chemical extinguishers are suitable for putting out regular fires like those involving fluids such as oil. Once the fire is safely out, you can count on SERVPRO to remediate the damages for you. Kitchen safety is crucial, as there are several ways in which fires can start. If a kitchen fire happens in your home, contact SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton & Southern Lake Counties right away. We walk you through the process of remediation and calm your worries when you give us a call at (219) 779-7577.

Benton, Jasper, Newton & Southern Lake Counties Smoke and Soot Cleanup

1/18/2017 (Permalink)

Smoke and Soot Damage Can Cause a Pervasive Odor in Your Benton, Jasper, Newton & Southern Lake County Home.

Smoke and soot is very invasive and can penetrate various cavities within your home, causing hidden damage and odor. Our smoke damage expertise and experience allows us to inspect and accurately assess the extent of the damage to develop a comprehensive plan of action.  

Smoke and soot facts:

  • Hot smoke migrates to cooler areas and upper levels of a structure.
  • Smoke flows around plumbing systems, seeping through the holes used by pipes to go from floor to floor.
  • The type of smoke may greatly affect the restoration process.

Different Types of Smoke

There are two different types of smoke–wet and dry. As a result, there are different types of soot residue after a fire. Before restoration begins, SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton & Southern Lake Counties will test the soot to determine which type of smoke damage occurred. The cleaning procedures will then be based on the information identified during pretesting. Here is some additional information:

Wet Smoke – Plastic and Rubber

  • Low heat, smoldering, pungent odor, sticky, smeary. Smoke webs are more difficult to clean.

Dry Smoke – Paper and Wood

  • Fast burning, high temperatures, heat rises therefore smoke rises.

Protein Fire Residue – Produced by evaporation of material rather than from a fire

  • Virtually invisible, discolors paints and varnishes, extreme pungent odor. 

Our Fire Damage Restoration Services

Since each smoke and fire damage situation is a little different, each one requires a unique solution tailored for the specific conditions.  We have the equipment, expertise, and experience to restore your fire and smoke damage.  We will also treat your family with empathy and respect and your property with care.

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call Us Today – (219) 779-7577

Restoring Your Benton, Jasper, Newton & Southern Lake Counties Commercial Property After A Water Damage Event

1/18/2017 (Permalink)

Commercial Water Damage Events Present Unique Challenges

Flooding and water damage events at Benton, Jasper, Newton & Southern Lake Counties commercial properties are often complex with numerous issues that require a knowledgeable and flexible response. Whether we’re dealing with a relatively small water cleanup scenario or a large scale event, we work quickly to assess each unique situation and isolate the damaged area. In many instances, normal operations can continue in a temporary space while we restore your facility.

Restoring Commercial Properties Presents Unique Challenges

Our professionals are trained to be mindful of legal and environmental concerns and strive to fully restore the damaged area while working within your budgetary constraints. We understand that every hour spent cleaning up is an hour of lost revenue and productivity. So when an emergency situation arises in your business, give us a call and we’ll be there fast with the help you need.

About SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton & Southern Lake Counties

SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton & Southern Lake Counties specializes in the cleanup and restoration of commercial and residential property after a water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.

                 Meet Our Crew!!!


  • OSHA - 30-hour General and/or Construction Industry Training Program
  • CCT - Carpet Cleaning Technician
  • WRT - Water Damage Restoration Technician
  • ECTP - Employee Certification Training Program
  • IICRC Certified Firm
  • SRT - Fire & Smoke Damage Restoration Technician
  • RRRP - Lead-Based Paint Activities and Renovation
  • ASD - Applied Structural Drying Technician

Protecting Your Pipes From the Cold

1/5/2017 (Permalink)

Preparing your home is a crucial task homeowners must take as we approach the colder fall and upcoming winter weather.  Our SERVPRO team looks out for you and your family and we have several tips when it comes to setting up your home. One particularly significant regards piping. Pipes freezing from the cold is an ongoing phenomenon we’d like to stop!

Before the cold weather hits, we suggest insulating the pipes most susceptible to freezing, specifically your home’s water pipes. In order to properly insulate and keep out cold air, you can use heat tape to wrap around any spots that leak. You should also make sure to disconnect garden hoses and drain the water from the pipes previously connected.

If your pipes do freeze immediately shut off the water.  Be cautious as there may still be water in the pipe, which could potentially lead to an electric shock. After stopping the flow of water call a professional to fix the piping. Do not try to defrost the pipe on your own.

We at SERVPRO hope you take care of your home. Remember, we’re always ready to help in any disaster, so if you do have a home emergency contact us. Your safety is our number one priority!

Water Damage 101: Learning the 3 Types of Damage

12/26/2016 (Permalink)

Did You Know…Water damages are categorized into three different types based on the SOURCE where the water loss came from?

Common sources of water losses are broken water pipes, defective appliances, natural disasters, and structural failures.

These losses can happen to ANY home or business owner and understanding the different types

can help you as a homeowner or business owner.

  • Clean Water = Category One

Clean Water is treated water that does not contain any waste, and has not been used. Examples of clean water damages are broken pipes, overflowing sinks, and defective appliances. This type of damage

presents few health risks to humans during removal.

  • Gray Water = Category Two

Gray Water is water that has been used and carries waste products, but does not contain human waste. Examples of Gray water damages are overflowing washing machines, toilet overflow with no solid matter. Generally this type of damage does present the hazard of spreading diseases but could cause sickness if exposed through touching or drinking.

  • Black Water = Category Three

Black Water is unsanitary water. Examples of Black Water are sewage backups, flood water.

This type of damage can contain disease-causing organisms as well as possible chemical contaminates.

*The names of water types-clean, gray or black are not based on actual water color, but what it contains*

*Clean water becomes Gray water, and Gray water becomes Black water, the longer water sits*

TIMELY mitigation is KEY in preventing secondary damage to contents and structure. Secondary damage can be mold growth, warped flooring, carpet delimitation, musty odors, etc. WHAT DOES THIS MEAN? The faster water is removed the less damage that will occur. This will ultimately save the property owner and insurance company money and prevent costly repairs to the property.

SERVPRO’s goal is to RESTORE rather than replace a damaged structure or contents in order to save time and money for our customers.


Watch: 5 Holiday Cleaning Hacks

12/19/2016 (Permalink)

Easy Tricks to Clean Up Holiday Party Messes

Clean up holiday parties in a flash with these clever tricks from HGTV! Click on the link below to roll the clip!


Ultrasonic Cleaning 101: Tips and Tricks

12/19/2016 (Permalink)

Ultrasonic Cleaning 101

Restoration and Remediation Magazine has a great article we came across in the Contents Corner of the issue: Ultrasonic Cleaning 101.  

"Ultrasonic cleaning is a very important part of contents restoration. Not only will ultrasonic cleaning increase your productivity as well as your profitability, it will greatly increase the items you will be able to restore and return to their pre-loss condition.

Without ultrasonic cleaning, there are simply items that would be virtually impossible from which to remove soot and odor.

That being said, there are dangers to using this type of cleaning method as you can damage or break items in the cleaning process. You need to make sure anyone using an ultrasonic machine in your company has been properly trained so they understand the cleaning process and how to operate the equipment.

The basic things that can go wrong will usually involve warping, breakage, cracking, delamination and color loss or bleeding. You can avoid these most of the time by following these simple steps.

It goes without saying any items you plan to use this cleaning method on should be tolerant of water submersion.

Here are some other tips."  Read more

SERVPRO Emergency Prepared Checklist

12/7/2016 (Permalink)

When fire and water cleanup is needed, getting help is now quicker and easier using the SERVPRO® READY Plan App. The Ready Plan is an emergency preparedness tool for home and business owners, property managers, risk managers and facility management. It allows for the creation of an Emergency READY Profile® containing critical facility information to help speed up response time. Our Emergency READY Profile helps us identify where the water and electrical shutoffs are, the best place to park our vehicles and all pertinent contact information.

Check out our video to learn more about our SERVPRO® READY Plan App: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7njiVOvWvfE&feature=youtu.be&list=PLqBFqHmMt_VD6e6e-i2Gvf2FVHp0oBAnU


If you would like our Sales and Marketing Representative, Sarah Adams, to come out and set up the Emergency Ready Profile please call us at 219-779-7577.

About SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton & Southern Lake Counties

7/19/2016 (Permalink)

Carley and Angela Burton took over SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton and Southern Lake Counties after they had a house fire in 2004. They wanted to own a company that could help people put their lives back together after a fire, smoke or water damage.

SERVPRO of Benton, Jasper, Newton & Southern Lake Counties specializes in the cleanup and restoration of residential and commercial properties after a fire, smoke or water damage. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.


Meet our Crew: http://www.SERVPRObentonjaspernewtonsouthernlakecounties.com/employee-photos

Our Certifications: http://www.SERVPRObentonjaspernewtonsouthernlakecounties.com/company-profile


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