Recent Posts

Sewage Backup: When To Call a Professional

5/18/2022 (Permalink)

The living room of a flooded house If you are having flooding issues and suspect storm or water damage, give SERVPRO a call at our 24-hour service line.

When Should You Hire A Professional For Sewage Backup?

If you return to your Newcastle, WA, home and find sewer backup in your bathtub or sink, you know it’s time to call a plumber. Regardless of where the blockage may be, the main sewer line may force dirty water up, resulting in bathtub backup. Getting to the root of the cause makes it easier to know if you should handle the mess yourself or get cleanup assistance from a professional storm and water damage restoration company.

Versatile, Trained Technicians

There may be a number of reasons that your sewage line back up. Typically, there will be signs, such as gurgling or slow draining. The main causes of a sewer backup include:

  • Tree Roots: Trees need water, which means their roots will go wherever they can find them. For homeowners, that may mean roots pushing into pipes and creating holes or crushing lines.
  • Clogs: Regardless if it is a clogged toilet or the mainline, there is the potential for sewage to make its way where it shouldn’t. Since a home’s water system all leads to one place, grease, hair and other materials being flushed or rinsed down the drain may quickly lead to a backup.
  • Damaged Lines: Depending on where you live, the sewage system may have old pipes that are prone to corrosion or decay.

If it is determined that the above is causing the problem, there’s a good chance that there will be minimal sewage leaking in. Once the problem is corrected, it can be cleaned if safety protocols are followed.

Flooding Requires a Professional

Another source of sewage issues is heavy rain and floodwaters. If that is the cause, there is also a good chance that there will be unwanted water in other areas besides the bathtub. Along with sewage, that floodwater may contain other contaminants that will require special equipment and gear to ensure it is properly cleaned.

A sewer backup is never a fun situation. Finding the cause is essential to fixing the issue and determining what cleanup method is best.

3 Tips To Secure a Building After a Fire

5/3/2022 (Permalink)

The higher portion of the roof was covered with blue tarp A fire can destroy windows and doors, exposing your structure to Mother Nature. Tarp vulnerable areas to protect them from wind and rain.

3 Ways To Secure A Building After A Fire

As a business owner in Renton, WA, you make careful plans for every possible event. You keep your employee records up to date and ensure that the fire safety plan is reviewed regularly, so your staff will be safe in an emergency. After a fire occurs, how would you secure your building until the fire damage repairs could be completed? If you don't have a plan, here are three tips to make one.

1. Assess the Fire Damage

Never enter a burning building. Once the building has been cleared by fire personnel as safe to enter, document all damage and contact your insurance company. Get detailed information on the extent of the damage as quickly as possible. Document all the fire-related damage so that if other damage occurs from rain or vandalism, you'll be able to file appropriate claims. A fire restoration company can execute a recovery plan.

2. Cover All Holes

A fire can burn out windows and doors, leaving your building susceptible to Mother Nature. However, fire cleanup can also cause holes as the professionals check for hot spots or other dangers. If possible, cover compromised parts of your building with tarps to keep out wind and rain. It may also be necessary to board up some larger holes or ground floor access to prevent anyone or anything from getting into the building.

3. Invest in Security

Unfortunately, a damaged building often attracts bad actors. Looting is a common problem after a fire because security is more lax. Protect your building by investing in security measures. Use portable floodlights to keep the area well-lit. Remove sensitive materials. Hire security guards and use cameras.

Restoring a building after fire damage often takes time. Make a plan to secure your building from weather, critters, and vandals so that you can focus on getting back to business quickly after a disaster.

How To Clean Your Microwave

4/6/2022 (Permalink)

Low angle view of baking soda with vinegar, natural mix for effective house cleaning Maintain the cleanliness of your microwave to ensure that it functions properly and that it removes any unpleasant smoke odors from your home.

How To Clean A Microwave Oven

Microwaves, like any other kitchen appliance in your Newcastle,WA, home, must be cleaned periodically to stay in top working condition. An unpleasant smoke smell can also appear if your device isn’t cleaned properly. If you need help restoring your after a kitchen fire, contact a fire restoration service right away.

Cleaning Tips After Every Use:

  • The inside of the microwave should be cleaned every time you use it.
  • Wipe the inside walls and the tray with a wet cloth right after use.

If food becomes hardened, place a bowl of water with a small amount of vinegar inside the unit and warm it up for several seconds. This acts as a steam clean to loosen the food particles. If the tray is especially dirty, place it in the sink filled with warm, sudsy water for a few minutes. Rinse and dry before replacing it.

Maintenance Steps For Periodic Cleaning

There are a few working parts within the appliance that need to be cleaned or replaced periodically. The charcoal filter should be changed a couple times a year. Since this filter absorbs pollutants, replacing it before it stops working helps to keep any smoke smell at bay. It’s important to note that the charcoal filter is only significant on units that have recirculating air. If your model vents to the outside, you can skip this maintenance step.

In over-the-counter ranges, the grease filter should be cleaned frequently. Manufacturer’s recommendations may vary, so follow the instructions in your operator’s manual. As a rule of thumb, however, once per month is sufficient to keep it working well. Remove the filter and place it in hot, soapy water. You can lightly scrub the filter with a soft brush if necessary.

The vent grill should be cleaned periodically as well. Refer to your owner’s manual for details on how to clean it.

Keep your microwave clean so that it functions well and removes unpleasant smoke smell from your home.

3 Tips To Prepare Your Business For a Disaster

4/1/2022 (Permalink)

evacuation plan - first floor Knowing your business’s risks and vulnerabilities is key to creating a disaster preparedness plan.

3 Disaster Preparedness Tips For Your Business

A natural disaster can strike with little or no warning, leaving a trail of destruction in its wake. Catastrophic events can be particularly devastating for business owners. While no one can completely prevent disasters from occurring, having a solid disaster preparedness plan in place for your business can go a long way to keep your employees safe, reduce your repair and remediation costs, and minimize your overall loss. Try these tips to establish a disaster plan for your business.

1. Understand Your Risks

Most businesses are at a greater risk for some types of disasters than others. The weather patterns in Renton,WA, are a key factor in assessing your disaster risk and understanding whether your business is more or less likely to experience a weather disaster such as a tornado, hurricane, earthquake, or blizzard.

In addition to weather, be aware of the risk factors that are unique to your business property. A restaurant, for example, might have a greater fire risk than an attorney’s office. Some businesses have a primary interest in safeguarding data while protecting inventory is a major concern for others. Knowing your business’s risks and vulnerabilities is key to creating a disaster preparedness plan.

2. Plan and Practice

Create a business preparedness plan that includes:

  • How and when to evacuate, including the route and meeting place
  • Procedures for backing up, shutting down, or transporting files and equipment
  • Role assignments, such as evacuation leader or first aid provider (make sure each assigned person is comfortable with his or her duties)

You may need multiple plans for different types of disasters.

3. Keep Emergency Contacts Handy

Compile a list of contact information for anyone you might need to contact immediately after a disaster, such as emergency responders, insurance agents, property managers, and contractors. Include phone numbers, email addresses, your policy numbers, and any other important information. Keep a copy in the business, a copy in your phone, and a copy in your vehicle.

Creating a disaster preparedness plan takes some effort, but the rewards will be well worth the effort if a disaster hits your property.

What To Do When Your Toilet Overflows While You Shower

4/1/2022 (Permalink)

Leakage of water from a toilet due to blockage of the pipe Larger or unreachable clogs may require a professional plumber to deal with the clog and sewage cleanup professionals to dry out your bathroom.

What Should You Do If Your Toilet Overflows While You're Showering?

Have you stepped out of your shower only to find a puddle on the floor near your toilet? Your toilet may have overflowed while you were washing yourself. This typically results from a clogged pipe between the sewer and the toilet. The excess water could flood your bathroom and necessitate sewage cleaning services.

Below are tips for removing the clog from your sewage system. Keep in mind that you should only handle small issues on your own. If these steps do not work, you need to contact an expert in Renton,WA.

1. Grab a Snake

A snake contains a flexible, thin wire that you can push down a drain. The wire then breaks up the clog. Look for a snake that is at least 25 feet long.

2. Try the Toilet

Start by pushing the snake into the toilet itself. Alternatively, you can remove the toilet and put the snake through the drain in the floor.

3. Check the Drain Cleanout

If this does not solve the issue, remove the cap from the primary drain in your crawlspace or basement. This typically requires the use of a pipe wrench. Some overflow may spill onto the floor, so prepare to do a bit of sewage cleaning once you remove the cap. You can then run the snake through the drain.

After steps two and three, run the shower to see if the problem has resolved. If not, you may have a clog deep in the main sewer line. There may also be a collapsed pipe or tree roots in the line. All of these issues require trained experts to resolve.

A toilet overflow can be particularly messy, especially if it takes place while you are in the shower. You may be able to clear a small clog by yourself. Larger or unreachable clogs, however, may require a professional plumber to deal with the blockage and sewage cleaning professionals to dry your bathroom.

What To Expect From The Storm Damage Restoration Process

3/23/2022 (Permalink)

A flooded home If you are having flooding issues and suspect storm or water damage, give SERVPRO of Renton a call at our 24 hour service line (425) 255-2227.

The Storm Damage Restoration Process: What To Expect

If a storm damaged your home in Kennydale, WA, you might be worried about the storm restoration process. You may wonder how anyone can fix all that water damage or what happens if they must tear out a wall.

It’s understandable that you would worry about this. After all, restoration can seem daunting to the uninitiated. Luckily, understanding the steps can help calm your nerves. While all projects are unique, these are the basic steps to expect:

  1. Initial damage control
  2. Removal of damaged materials
  3. A drying period
  4. Rebuilding

Each of these steps is important and should be done by experienced and trusted professionals. Below is a closer look at each stage:

Initial Damage Control

Before your restoration crew can do anything else, they must extract the water from your home. This is the first step in stopping further water damage and keeping needed repairs to a minimum. It’s essential to call a storm restoration company as soon as possible after a flood to get this process going.

Removal of Damaged Materials

Once the water is out of the way, the contractors can survey the damage and decide what they need to tear out. They may decide to make a flood cut, which prevents mold by removing a section of wall above the flood line. The professionals will properly dispose of damaged materials to keep your home safe.

A Drying Period

The third step can be the most difficult for anxious homeowners. The affected area must be allowed to dry out, which can take some time. Be patient; you’re almost done.


After the area is dry, the professionals can start rebuilding the damaged structures. Great companies can make sure it looks as good as or better than before.

If a flood damages your Kennydale, WA home, call a trusted storm restoration company immediately. They can get rid of the water, tear out damaged walls, and make it look like water damage never happened.

4 Items You Should Discard After a Fire

3/21/2022 (Permalink)

Kitchen with fire damage SERVPRO is here to help in your time of need. We are fire damage restoration experts who are available 24 hours a day to respond when you need us.

4 Things To Throw Away After A Fire

A residential blaze can cause significant destruction inside any home in Newcastle, WA. In addition to intense heat and flames, your possessions may also sustain damage from water and fire-retardant chemicals. While some of your personal belongings may be salvageable, there are four specific items prone to fire damage that you should promptly throw away during the cleanup and restoration process.

1. Burned Clothing

Items not completely incinerated may sustain both soot and smoke damage. Although you may be able to wash debris and any lingering smoky aroma from some objects, burned clothing is often unsalvageable. As a result, you should discard any charred fabrics.

2. Medicine and Cosmetics

High heat can damage medication, rendering them ineffective and unusable. Heat, water and fire-fighting solutions can also destroy cosmetics. For safety reasons, it’s best to discard and replace these items.

3. Canned and Boxed Food

Your first instinct may be to try and salvage any uncharred, nonperishable food items. However, anything doused by chemicals or water may no longer be safe to consume.

Intense heat can also activate bacteria, causing jarred and canned food to become inedible. For these reasons, you should throw away potentially contaminated pantry items.

4. Perishable Food

In the absence of power, a refrigerator can keep items cool for several hours, if the door remains closed. However, this does not necessarily mean you can salvage perishable food.

If you open your fridge and notice soot buildup or a smoky scent, it’s best to toss any food stored inside. You should also discard freezer items that no longer contain ice crystals or feel cold.

During a fire, your home and its contents are vulnerable to numerous forms of destruction. Although some belongings may appear unharmed, it’s often best to exercise caution and throw away items particularly susceptible to heat and fire damage. Taking this proactive approach may help safeguard your health and wellbeing.

How To Efficiently Extinguish a Grease Fire

3/21/2022 (Permalink)

Young Man Using Red Fire Extinguisher To Stop Fire Coming From Oven In Kitchen If the blaze is no longer contained inside the pot, use a Class B, K or multipurpose fire extinguisher to smolder the flames.

How To Put Out A Grease Fire Quickly And Effortlessly

A grease fire can erupt suddenly and spread quickly. To help minimize damage, it’s important to quickly extinguish any kitchen blaze. However, certain actions may be highly ineffective and can jeopardize your safety. For this reason, it’s crucial to understand the appropriate techniques to smolder a grease-fueled inferno.

What Not To Do

There are several procedures that every homeowner in East Renton Highlands, WA, should avoid doing in the event of a kitchen fire involving grease:

  • Fanning the flames with a dishcloth
  • Pouring water over the inferno
  • Transporting the burning pot outside

Each of these measures is counterproductive and may cause flames to spread.

Turn Off the Heat

High cooking temperatures fuel many kitchen blazes. Because of this, it’s imperative that you remain vigilant while cooking. In the event of a grease fire, you should immediately turn off the heat source.

Smolder the Flames

Once the stove is off, you should cover the flaming pot with a metal lid or baking sheet. Avoid using glass or ceramic items because the intense heat may cause these materials to shatter.

As an alternative, you can also douse flames with baking soda. However, this technique is only effective against small fires and should not be attempted on larger infernos.

Utilize an Appropriate Fire Extinguisher

If the blaze is no longer contained inside the pot, use a Class B, K or multipurpose fire extinguisher to smolder the flames. Because it contains pressurized water, a Class A extinguisher is not suitable for use on flammable liquids. For safety reasons, you should check the label before engaging any extinguisher to verify the type of fire it’s designed to battle.

Call 911

Attempting to battle a large inferno can be extremely dangerous. If flames spread, evacuate the premises and call 911 for assistance.

Be Prepared

To quickly extinguish a grease fire, it’s imperative that you remain alert. Keeping a metal lid and fire extinguisher accessible while cooking can help you respond quickly, reducing the risk of a damaging blaze requiring a tedious fire cleanup.

How To Get Rid of That After-Flood Smell

3/21/2022 (Permalink)

Restoration machines are cleaning water damage in a home. The first thing you should do when you notice that musty odor is to call a restoration crew. SERVPRO can help you, call us!

How To Remove The After-Flood Odor

Have you ever been inside a building or car that has recently flooded? If so, you know the stench that flood water often leaves behind. The combination of mold growth and sewage loss can create a foul odor.

Before you learn what to do to expel this smell, there are a few things you should never try to in Elliot, WA:

  • Cover the odor up with other scents
  • Ignore it
  • Think bleach alone can work
  • Keep the doors and windows closed

Any of these steps can make things worse and put the people in your home at risk. Instead, try the following methods:

Call a Professional

The first thing you should do when you notice that musty odor is to call a restoration crew. Mold growth is no small problem. It can cause structural and health issues. A cleanup company has the necessary tools and experience to solve your problem.

Dry While You Wait

In many cases, professionals from a flood water restoration company can come quickly after you call. However, there are a few things you can do while you await their arrival. First, do your best to dry out the affected area.

You can open doors and windows to get air flowing. If the weather doesn't permit you to open your windows, try firing up the dehumidifier instead. Furthermore, you should keep children and pets away from the area.

Clean Furniture

If your furniture was in the path of the flood, you might wish to start getting the musty smell out of the upholstery. It may seem counterintuitive, but white vinegar can help absorb the odor. Spray some on affected areas and wait for the vinegar smell to dissipate. When it does, you may notice the mold smell has gone with it.

There’s no doubt that the smell of mold growth after flood water affects your home can be sickening. In addition to these measures, be sure to call a professional in Elliot, WA, to rid your home of mold.

How to Prepare For a Visit From Your Home Adjuster

3/7/2022 (Permalink)

Technician is inspecting something Before the adjuster arrives, you should examine your home and locate any areas with damage related to the claim.

How To Get Ready For Your Home Adjuster's Visit

In the event of damage to your Renton, WA home, it is best to contact your insurance company as soon as possible. This helps the process go more quickly and will get you living comfortably in your home again sooner. Before the claim can be approved, you will need to meet with a home adjuster who will help assess the damages. Here are a few things that you can do to prepare for the visit.

1. Keep Track of Damaged Areas that Need to Be Shown to the Adjuster

Before the adjuster arrives, you should examine your home and locate any areas with damage related to the claim. Depending on the cause of the damage, this can include broken or missing roof tiles, cracked or warped walls or flooring or flooded areas. This information can help determine how much it will cost for a damage remediation specialist to make repairs.

2. Make a List of Damaged Belongings

It is likely that the structure of your home is not the only thing that was affected. If there has also been damage to your personal belongings, then you should keep track of that as well. You should create a list of items that have been destroyed or damaged that you will provide to the adjuster. Taking pictures can be helpful as well. Be sure not to throw out any of the damaged items before meeting with the home adjuster.

3. Fill Out Any Necessary Paperwork

When you file an insurance claim, there will likely be quite a bit of paperwork that you need to fill out. You should complete this as soon as possible to get the process finished more quickly. If you have any questions, the adjuster can help.
Because meeting with a home adjuster is an important step in filing a claim, you should make sure that you are prepared. If the visit goes smoothly, it will make the whole process go more easily.