Archived Water Damage Blog Posts
Mold Can Grow Anywhere
Thermal imaging of water loss.
Mold can grow on any surface. It is most seen in places of high moisture or lower lighting such as kitchens, bathrooms, basements, cabinets, and near pipes or ducting. Behind drywall is one of the most regular placements to find mold as wood and drywall are excellent potential sources for growth. Ceilings with a lack of ventilation will accumulate moisture over time and can become an additional location for mold to grow. If the temperature is correct, and there are adequate amounts of moisture and oxygen, mold can grow.
Below are some typical ways mold can infiltrate your home or business.
- Constant Humidity – ensure to ventilate your home properly, especially during warmer months.
- Leaking Pipes in the Home – Mold behind drywall can also signify a faulty or broken pipe.
- Poorly Ventilated Homes – A dehumidifier will help humidity stay below a certain range.
- Leaking AC Unit – leaks anywhere on an AC unit can cause moisture to form and prevent the AC working correctly.
Make sure you have proper ventilation and low moisture content to limit the potential that mold will develop. Mold is a common issue, and many businesses and homeowners have to deal with it. It is important to get the source inspected by professionals and a professional remediation company to perform the remediation work. Call SERVPRO of Culver City / Baldwin Hills once you need remediation work performed.
Steps To Minimize Water Damage
- Call a professional immediately. They can coordinate your next steps best and get you scheduled for assistance. A professional will give you advice that you can trust. In addition, remember to turn off your water and power to the affected areas.
- Take safety precautions. Even if you are aware of the source of water it still may contaminated. Water can be clear and still contain harmful bacteria and other contaminants.
- Protect your belongings. If you have things that have objective or sentimental value to you or your family, scoop these things up and store them away in a safe place so that they won’t be exposed to water. It can be helpful to put a dry layer (some plywood, plastic, etc.) between legs of furniture and wet ground to prevent water seeping into the legs and deforming it.
- Begin water removal. Follow any specific instructions that were given when you were on the phone when you called for help. Don’t do anything potentially dangerous.
SERVPRO of Culver City / Baldwin Hills has 24-hour emergency services, so don’t hesitate to contact us. Almost everyone experiences a flood in their home at some point make sure you have a plan to address.
5 Warning Signs of a Burst Pipe
Burst pipe and water damage.
Not all broken pipes cause immediate water damage. It can sometimes be a slow leak that eventually causes water damage to your home or business. Be alert to the warning signs of a broken pipe.
- Fluctuating Water Pressure:
Don’t immediately blame the city. It may be a busted pipe. Pressure changes are hard on plumbing system and can damage pipe fittings.
- Water discoloration and or smell:
The water has taken on a brownish or “rust” colored feature and or smells of rotten eggs. Fun fact, that rotten egg smell is hydrogen sulfide, a naturally occurring gas that can also form in sewer lines. Make sure to call in a certified technician to handle this type of issue.
- Recurring sink puddles:
You try to stop any leaks under sinks to no avail. Inspect your home or business carefully just above pipe cover plates, additionally look for damp spots.
- Noisy pipes/water movement sounds within walls:
If no water is running in your home, you should not be able to hear water. A single broken pipe can influence the water pressure of an entire structure.
- Rising water bill cost:
Small drips can add up. Make sure to regular check your water bill and plumbing fixtures for leaks to lessen the chance a pipe burst will occur.
How We Dry Your Home After Water Damage!
First a detailed assessment must be performed onsite to confirm the extent of water damage which has occurred. Depending on the building materials that are affected our team will provide a detailed scope of work and dry out/mitigation scope of work for your review and that of your insurance adjuster.
Sometimes, the damage is minimal and the dry out plan can happen very quickly with minimal cost. If this is the case an insurance claim may not be required as it the cost of mitigation will be less than your deductible amount possibly. In other instances where the damage is more significant, we are able to communicate all aspects of the scope and cost in a timely fashion. We divide the process into (3) phases. Phase (1) initial moisture mapping, and or fire mapping, stabilization through the use of engineering controls and equipment. Phase (2) is to assess our client’s contents such as furniture, artwork, clothing. Phase (3) is a detailed reconstruction estimate itemizing the building repair scope of work and cost to be performed.
There are many different types of equipment that can be needed for a significant loss. Some of this equipment includes:
- Air movers
- Water extraction vacuums
- HEPA vacuum, both backpack and canister type
- Submersible pumps
- Moisture detectors
- Floor mat drying system
Water Damage Knowledge
A pipe burst just happened in your California home and you might be wondering what to do next to avoid water damage. Here are five things you should know to prevent long term problems after flooding:
- Damage Can Happen Numerous Ways
A waterline may break, a storm could lead to flooding, or you might have a leaky seal around a window. No matter what type of water damage you could be worried about, a SERVPRO professional should still be able to help. Give us a call!
- Repairs Should Be Taken Care of Quickly Once Discovered
Any time you have any water damage, whether, from a pipe burst or roof leak, it’s important to make repairs as quickly as possible. A quick cleanup may help save your home from more costly problems long term.
- Untreated Damage Can Cause Long Term Problems
Fix all the damaged areas as soon as possible. Putting off repairs can lead to additional issues like warped wood or mold growth.
- Affected Areas Can Be Restored
No matter how bad the damage may appear at first, a restoration company like SERVPRO can conduct cleanup and repairs. With little time and work, we can soon have the space looking “Like it never even happened.”
- A Professional Can Help
Anytime you think you may have flood water issues of any kind, call SERVPRO for details. We are here to help!
Quickly Repair and Restore a Water Damaged Home with SERVPRO
Proper structural drying and dehumidification is very necessary to prevent warping or rotting of dry walls and flooring in your home after a water damage. If moisture levels are not properly regulated by trained technicians, you will start to have a foul smell and mold will quickly grow in less than 24-48 hours.
Water quickly absorbs into the interior sheet rock, wall insulation and then into wooden studs of building. If interior studs or surfaces are left moist, water and mold can jeopardize the building structure integrity or cause foundational issues.
Fortunately, most water damage is caught in time with proper water extraction cleanup, dehumidify and a minor repair that prevents future structural problems. For water damage related to flooding in your home call SERVPRO of Culver City/Baldwin Hills.
Small Leaks Aren't Always Small Problems
Even though your home might suffer a small leak this does not always mean it's only a small damage. While you cannot always prevent water damage due to sudden, unexpected events, there are some ways you can prepare your home in advance. By practicing regular maintenance, such as checking your roof and your pipes for leaks, you can possibly prevent a significant water event. The longer a home stays wet or moist after a water event, the more likely the overall structural integrity will be compromised.
The technicians at SERVPRO of Culver City/Baldwin Hills are professionals when it comes to water damage in residential homes, we understand the headache that water damage can cause. Therefore we always put our best foot forward and offer the best services in the most stressful of times. Always call SERVPRO to make it "Like it never even happened."
Signs to Spot Water Damage in Your Home
Quick signs that could lead to possible water damage in your home.
1. Check your floors.
No matter what kind of flooring you have, it will manifest signs of water damage.
2. Look for stains.
Unusual stains could indicate there is a leaky pipe or drain inside the wall. Cracks in the drywall or areas that appear swollen and are soft to touch also may signify trouble. Peeling paint is another sign of loose water within wall spaces. As the drywall gets saturated, paint can lose adhesion.
3. Inspect the outside.
What you want to look for are pools of standing water that can indicate poor drainage in the yard, gutter spouts that aren’t transporting water far enough from the house or leaky rain gutters.
4. Watch for rust and mold.
Inspect your water heater and check for rust on the tank or damp spots on the floor.
By following these tips and being aware as a homeowner you can possibly catch water damage early on and save yourself a headache in the future.
Here Are 10 Tips To Avoid Water Damage To Your Home
In Southern California, there are ways to protect yourself against costly water losses and claims. Follow these 10 easy tips to keep your home safe and well-maintained:
On The Outside:
- Maintain Trees and Vegetation
Thriving shrubs can be a beautiful thing – except when their roots wrap around your pipes and break them. That’s why it’s important to minimize landscaping near utility pipes or, if necessary, remove trees and shrubs that have become too big.
- Clean Gutters and Downspouts
Clean your gutters at least twice a year to avoid blockage and ice dams. Standing water can cause damage to your gutters and roof, and unmanaged overflow may create puddles that could damage your foundation. Don’t forget to clean downspouts to ensure water can flow through, and secure downspouts so that they point away from the home.
- Disconnect Hoses
Standing water in a hose may freeze back into the pipe and create an ice block that may bust your pipes and create damage to walls, floor, and foundation.
On the Inside:
- Know your Water Main
Know the location of your water main and shut it off if you leave for an extended amount of time. If no water goes into the house, chances are no faucet drips can wreak havoc on your home.
- Check Appliances Regularly
Check and maintain your appliances regularly for leaks according to the manufacturer’s directions.
- Investigate Leaks Right Away and Fix Promptly
If you opt to ignore moisture damage or postpone making the necessary repairs be prepared to experience mold, mildew, dry rot, or even structural damage to your home. Keep in mind that homeowner’s insurance provides coverage for damage that is sudden and accidental. Damage that results from a lack of maintenance is not covered on a standard homeowner’s insurance policy.
- Upgrade Washing Machine Hoses
Old, brittle, or leaky washing machine hoses are among the most frequent causes of water loss for homeowners. Replace yours regularly to avoid a mighty mess and expensive damage.
- Install Water Detection Devices
A water detector is a small electronic device that sounds an alarm when its sensor is in contact with moisture. Its main benefit is that it detects low moisture levels or slow leaks that often go unnoticed. Install it near water heaters, sump pumps, washing machines, dishwashers, and toilets to prevent extensive damage and mold growth.
- Check Your Water Pressure
If the water pressure to your home is set too high, pipes and hoses may fail under the pressure. Buy a water pressure gauge at a local hardware store, attach it to an outside faucet, and turn the faucet to full force. The gauge will give you a reading of the home’s water pressure. Typical residential water systems are designed for water pressure of 40 – 70 psi. If your home’s water pressure exceeds 100psi, install a pressure regulator (which is available at hardware stores as well.)
- Do Monitor Your Water Bill
Sometimes, the only way you know that water is leaking is by taking a closer look at your water bill. If your usage jumps significantly from one month to the next without explanation, put your “water detective’s hat” on. Is there a leak in your crawlspace? Or, is it a pipe in your front yard? Don’t leave mystery leaks unattended!
Call us if you have any questions! We are here to help!
It's Not Always Obvious
Even if you haven't had an obvious leak, water damage could indicate that a hidden pipe or joint is leaking. It could be behind a wall or under your floor. If you ignore it, not only is it doing more damage, but you'll also be paying higher utility bills for the water that is being wasted.
You should never ignore water damage, even when the cause has been eliminated. You may think that the moisture will dry out, but it can cause serious underlying problems for not only the structure of your home but also you and your loved one's health.
If you experience water damage in your home, immediately call the professionals at SERVPRO. Never take any chances with water damage in your home.
Restoration VS. Replacement
Packing items away that have been saved from a water loss.
After a water and/or fire loss replacement may seem like the easiest and quickest option. We are a business of restoration rather than replacement. Some of the pros to restoration include: being more cost efficient, helping our carbon footprint by limiting what we put in landfills, and saving many items with sentiment cannot be replaced. SERVPRO of Culver City/Baldwin Hills works seamlessly with insurance companies nationwide, providing them with restoration budgets that not only meet their stringent guidelines, but provide the homeowner with the best possible outcome. After the classification, cost effective remediation methods are tailored to the expected condition of the items in each conditional area. The professionals at SERVPRO of Culver City/Baldwin Hills will always do their best to act quickly and restore what they can.
Flood Insurance 101: What Homeowners Need To Know
This Baldwin Hills home had about 3 inches of flooding from their washing machine not being connected properly.
The fact is, any property can flood. Your home doesn’t have to be under five feet of water from hurricane flood surges to suffer flood damage. Normal amounts of rainwater can drain under your home, and flood your basement or the lowest floor level, causing flood damage. This kind of flooding can cause mold, increase the risk of termites and cause electrical problems. But the good news is that SERVPRO of Culver City/Baldwin Hills is able to take care of all your flooding problems with our prompt response and quick timing.
SERVPRO of Culver City/Baldwin Hills works closely with insurance companies to ensure that your home and your insurance are both taken care of correctly. We are on multiple preferred vendors list as a corporation with insurance companies such as State Farm and Farmers insurance all over Southern California.
Winter Water Damage in Culver City, CA
Water can enter from anywhere and flood your space.
While Southern California does not have as a harsh of winters as the rest of the nation, your home or business is still at risk for water damage during the winter months. In extreme cases, water pipes can freeze and burst. Especially, in homes with poor ventilation and/or unresolved water leaks could even develop mold. Most home or business owners do not think to have their roofs checked before storm season, which leads to many leaks that could have been prevented. SERVPRO of Culver City/Baldwin Hills is your water restoration industry professional. Our technicians are trained and prepared for weather related water incidents. Always call SERVPRO of Culver City/Baldwin Hills for any of your water restoration needs. We operate 24 hours a day. Call us anytime! (310) 558-9422
Water Damage from Appliances and Plumbing in Culver City, CA
Water damage from appliance and plumbing leaks can cause your laminate floors to buckle or warp.
Water damage from appliance and plumbing leaks, like water heaters, dishwashers, ice makers and washing machines in your home can cause your laminate floors to buckle or warp. Many times, these leaks are quite slow and often go unnoticed in your home or business in Culver City or even in surrounding cities like Baldwin Hills, Century City to Bel Air. Slow leaks are not easy to identify since they are underneath the laminate where they penetrate the core material. While you might not be able to see the leak, one of our SERVPRO technicians will be able to find excess moisture by using a moisture meter. We arrive ready to protect your home with all proper equipment to do that. It is common to use dehumidifiers and air movers to help dry all affected areas. However, if it is not caught in time, your laminate floors will have to be removed because the moisture gets trapped underneath the laminate.
Water Damage from Concrete in Culver City, CA
Did you know? Moisture can enter through the stucco of your home where the concrete meets the home.
Residents living in Culver City to Marina Del Rey, Santa Monica, Playa Del Rey and even towards West LA would never think that water pooling in your backyard on concrete could create such damage. Moisture can enter through the stucco of your home where the concrete meets the home. Not to mention when your house sits on a slab of concrete, a whole floor can cup from the concrete being too wet. This can happen even when a vapor barrier is used under the laminate floor.
Every concrete floor should be tested for moisture before laminate floor covering is installed. Concrete that is newly poured needs to be allowed to cure for sixty days or more before the laminate is installed. There are several ways to test for moisture.
These procedures should be performed by professionals like our highly trained technicians at SERVPRO of Culver City/Baldwin Hills, such as electronic testing and calcium chloride testing. We have the proper equipment and training to do the job correctly and in a timely manner.
What Should I Do When My Water Heater Leaks?
There are a few reasons a water heater would leak. Here are five things to look for when finding the source of a leak:
- Leak at The Water Supply Lines.
It’s always important to check above the water heater first because you want to check the plumbing pipes. A drip from the top can easily leak down making it look like it’s coming from inside the tank.
- Leak at The Water Heater Nipples.
These are located at the top of the water heater. The water heater nipples connect the water heater to the cold water inlet pipe and the hot water exit pipe. This is another common area to find a leakage.
- Leak at The Temperature and Pressure Relief Valve.
It is more serious when there is a leak coming from the T&P valve because it can be a few causes in itself to figure out. For example, the leaking t & p may point out the overall water pressure in your home is too high, and that the pressure regulator is not working properly.
- Leak at The Drain Line.
This is located a the bottom of the water heater and it is common for the drain valve to fail to close completely after draining or flushing.
- Leak in The Tank.
If you’re unable to find the leak from any of the four above, it is likely the tank inside the water heater has gone bad and will need to be replaced.
A leak will not fix itself. If you do not feel comfortable fixing it yourself, the best thing to do is to not wait for it to get worse. Call SERVPRO of Culver City/Baldwin Hills here in Southern California to find and fix the source of your leak, so you can avoid dangerous damages and expensive repairs.