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Flooded Basement Tips

3/1/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Flooded Basement Tips Flooded Basement

Avoid a flooded basement, this year and forever!

Normal spring thaws can cause a small trickle to become a bigger issue. Foundation cracks that weren’t a problem before have the potential to become a huge problem now.

This year’s sudden spring thaw could exacerbate any issues that were not taken care of in the past.

In late winter and early spring, the ground can’t absorb all of the rain and snow melt, so it flows along the foundation. A proper drain system, sump pump and sealed cracks will help you avoid problems this spring.

Here are a few simple tips:

  • Keep your gutters clean (this will keep rain water from flowing directly to your foundation)
  • Grade landscaping away from foundation (add mulch or soil at an angle, higher at the foundation, slanting away)
  • Check your sump pump or purchase a submersible pump and fans

Move valuables and expensive items you may have in your basement, or use pallets and shelves to keep them elevated.

When there is a natural disaster, often the emergency items you need are sold out, so plan ahead.

If you do have a flood

There are still things you can do to mitigate the damage.

  • If you can do it safely, turn off the electricity.

But don’t get electrocuted! If you can reach the breaker without standing in water turn it off.  

  • If you’ve got just a bit of water in spots consider yourself lucky. If you can clean it up with a wet vac and have fans to dry it afterward you might be all set.
  • If your basement has flooded more than an inch, it’s best to call us.

If you have a sump pump and fans, you may still wish to tackle the job by yourself.  Submersible water pumps work best when you place them in the deepest part of the flooded water. If dirt and debris builds up and clogs the screen around the pump, clean it out and consider using something like a small tool to prop it up a bit. This will increase the space for water to flow through the pump. Use the widest and shortest hose possible, this will enable the pump to work faster.

When all the water is up and it appears dry you may still want us simply to treat the previously flooded area in order to kill any mold before it’s an issue.

To avoid this problem next year you must identify where the water came in.

  • First, seal the cracks
  • Then, dig to avert water flow next time

Remember water will travel down the path of least resistance. It is strongly advised to dig outside near the foundation and repack the soil. Dig down to where the water came, and then dig out and to the sides a few feet. There is a channel that you may not see but you will disturb and avert if you do this. Next year, water will not flow in that same direction if done correctly.

Last but not least, our friends at Signature Page Real Estate in Woburn, suggest having a dehumidifier in any basement, old or new.


  • Clean your gutters
  • Have a sump pump, wet vac and fans
  • Fix lawn grading
  • Seal the cracks
  • Dig to avert water flow next year
  • Have a dehumidifier

If water comes in and it’s too much to tackle yourself, call us. Mitigating water damage is one of our core competencies. We’ll tackle the job at hand, and be sure your water problem doesn’t become a mold problem later: "Like it never even happened."

Pipe Freeze Tips

12/4/2017 (Permalink)

When temperatures get below 20 degrees you should flush your toilets and run hot water through your pipes every 4 hours. When it’s extremely cold let cold water slowly drip from faucets served by exposed pipes and pipes particularly close to the foundation.

The lines going to your toilets are more susceptible because they have only cold water running through them. The lower the temperature the more crucial it is to flush toilets regularly. If the toilet sounds irregular or makes a crackling sound while filling up the tank or tank and bowl, or is slow to fill, you have a problem. It’s important to remedy it quickly.

Identify the line in the basement. You can often pin point exactly where it’s frozen because it will be colder to the touch.

Set up a space heater and aim it directly at the frozen area of the line for at least an hour, or until tank and bowl fills at the normal rate. With old style heaters, be careful of a potential fire hazard. Give the space heater space. Do not have flammable materials within several feet of the heater and be certain it’s standing or balanced securely.

Check for drafts. You may find a draft that is aimed directly at the line. These lines are often very close to the foundation. You can identify the draft by simply using your hand or a candle.

Cover up the drafty area. This can be a quick fix by adhering plastic or even a towel over the draft, or you could use caulk or spackle from the inside. Just stop that draft from aiming at your pipe. Suring up drafty areas from the outside and inside is ideal, but at least tackle the problem from the inside for now.

If it’s too late and your pipe has burst, shut off the main water supply, crank up the heat and call a plumber. We’re here if you need us for clean up afterward. We’ll clean up all water, leave fans and dehumidifiers behind until it’s thoroughly dry and be sure your water problem doesn’t turn into a mold problem.

We are a Certified IICRC Firm

11/16/2017 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Stoneham/ Wakefield is an IICRC firm. The Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) creates the standards for the restoration industry and provides training and certification to restoration companies. IICRC Certified Firms have the right to display the IICRC Certified Logo.

IICRC Certified Firms must

  • Present accurate information to consumers and conduct business with honesty and integrity.
  • Require a technician on all jobs who has been formally trained and passed all required tests.
  • Require a continuing education program to keep technicians up-to-date on the latest changes in the industry.
  • Maintain liability insurance to protect all parties in the event of an accident.
  • Maintain a written complaint policy and agree to Better Business Bureau or similar arbitration to resolve disputes, and accept the conclusions and recommendations of arbitration.

The IICRC Develops The Standards For The Restoration Industry

The IICRC has been the driving force in establishing the main industry standards and reference guides for professional carpet cleaning, water damage restoration and mold remediation. These IICRC standards take years to develop and require the coordination of experts in the field: manufacturers, industry organizations, insurance professionals, training schools, contractors, and public health professionals.

Every five years, the standards are reviewed and updated. The water damage restoration field changes rapidly with advancements in technology and science, and therefore the standards must evolve to keep pace.

About SERVPRO of Stoneham/ Wakefield

SERVPRO of Stoneham/ Wakefield 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 and we are an IICRC Certified Firm. We believe in continuous training: 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.

SERVPRO Here to Help

11/16/2017 (Permalink)

Flooding and water damage events at Stoneham, Wakefield, Reading and North Reading 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 Stoneham/ Wakefield

SERVPRO of Stoneham/ Wakefield specializes in the cleanup and restoration of commercial and residential property after a damaging 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.

When mold invades your home or business

11/16/2017 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation When mold invades your home or business When mold invades your home, make sure you know who to call

Microscopic mold spores naturally occur almost everywhere, both outdoors and indoors. This makes it impossible to remove all mold from a home or business. Therefore, mold remediation reduces the mold spore count back to its natural or baseline level. Some restoration businesses advertise “mold removal” and even guarantee to remove all mold, which is a fallacy. Consider the following mold facts:

  • Mold is present almost everywhere, indoors and outdoors.
  • Mold spores are microscopic and float along in the air and may enter your home through windows, doors, or AC/heating systems or even hitch a ride indoors on your clothing or a pet.
  • Mold spores thrive on moisture. Mold spores can quickly grow into colonies when exposed to water. These colonies may produce allergens and irritants.
  • Before mold remediation can begin, any sources of water or moisture must be addressed. Otherwise, the mold may return.
  • Mold often produces a strong, musty odor and can lead you to possible mold problem areas.
  • Even higher-than-normal indoor humidity can support mold growth. Keep indoor humidity below 45 percent.

If your home or business has a mold problem, we can inspect and assess your property and use our specialized training, equipment, and expertise to remediate your mold infestation.

If You See or Smell Signs of Mold, Call Us Today – (781) 245-0011. 

When You See Mold, Call Us Today

11/16/2017 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation When You See Mold, Call Us Today Mold Can Spread and Multiply Faster than You Realize

If you see visible mold, do not disturb it. You can inadvertently spread the mold infestation throughout your home. When mold is disturbed, the mold can release microscopic mold spores which become airborne and can circulate inside your home.

What to Do:

  • Stay out of affected areas.
  • Turn off the HVAC system and fans.
  • Contact SERVPRO of Lawrence for mold remediation services.

What Not to Do:

  • Don’t touch or disturb the mold.
  • Don’t blow air across any surfaces with visible or suspected mold growth.
  • Don’t attempt to dry the area yourself.
  • Don’t spray bleach or other disinfectants on the mold.

About Our Mold Remediation Services

SERVPRO of Stoneham/ Wakefield specializes in mold cleanup and restoration, in fact, it’s a cornerstone of our business.  Our crews are highly trained restoration professionals that use specialized equipment and techniques to properly remediate your mold problem quickly and safely.

If You See Signs of Mold, Call Us Today – 781-245-0011

Surprise Snow Storms Tips for Your Home!

11/16/2017 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Surprise Snow Storms Tips for Your Home! When it comes to life’s emergencies, it isn't a matter of if they will occur, it's a matter of when they will occur

The potential for surprise snow storms as Winter approaches can be very real. They can also be beautiful to see as the snow sticks to trees. But they can be dangerous to your home and office. In order to stay safe, SERVPRO of Stoneham/ Wakefield wants you to please follow these and other safety tips for your home.

Before the Storm

  • Have an emergency supply kit on hand
  • Develop a communication plan with all members of your family

After the Storm               

  • If wires come down due to the weight of the snow, do not touch them
  • Do not drive on roads that haven't been cleared

Keep you and your family safe through a storm. When in doubt, stay away from anything that may look suspicious or anything that may be break due to the weight of the snow. 

If the snow starts melting and it comes into your home, SERVPRO of Stoneham/ Wakefield is here to help! We can remove any affected materials and dry out the structure. For more information, please visit us at or call (781)-245-0011.

Choosing the Right Roof For Your Home

11/16/2017 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Choosing the Right Roof For Your Home Knowing the damage that can occur in your region will help determine the type of roof that belongs on your home.

The right roof for your home can not only look good, but always can protect your home during a storm. Here, we share a blog from Budget Dumpster on how to pick the right roof for you.

Types of Roof Shingles


Of all the different types of shingles, these are the most commonly used because they’re the least expensive and relatively easy to install. These shingles are made of fiberglass mats coated with asphalt containing sand-like granules.

The downside: Asphalt shingles have a relatively short life span of 20 to 30 years, and they don’t fare well in areas where the temperature fluctuates unexpectedly, such as the Midwest.

Why choose asphalt roofing shingles? They’re the most economical of roofing options and come in plenty of styles and color selections.


This type of roof is made with many different materials – aluminum, steel, copper, zinc and titanium. If properly maintained, your metal roof could last as long as 50 years. You may want to consider metal if your home’s roofline is flat or steep.

The downside: Metal roofing can become noisy whenever it’s hailing or raining.

Why choose metal roofing shingles? They’re durable, fireproof and good at shedding snow and ice.


Not only are slate shingles durable – lasting anywhere from 80 to 100 years – they are also highly resistant to water and physical damage.

The downside: In addition to their high price tag, slate is expensive to repair because very few roofing companies specialize in this particular type of shingle. Furthermore, slate is rather heavy and may not be a good fit if your home can’t handle the weight.

Why choose slate roofing shingles? They’re one of the longest-lasting types of roofing material you can choose, and on the right style of home, adds a nice visual appeal.


Aside from being durable and having a lifespan of 30 to 50 years, wood shingles are more environmentally friendly than other types. This type of roof shingle is usually made of cedar, but can also be made of other rot-resistant woods, such as redwood.

The downside: Although energy-efficient and long-lasting, wood shingles are less fire-resistant than other types. They’re also more susceptible to termites and mold.

Why choose wood roofing shingles? They’re visually appealing and generally cooler than other types of shingles that are darker in color.

For more information on your roof or Budget Dumpster, please visit their blog.

If your roof doesn't hold up in a storm and you are a victim of water damage, please call us at 781-245-0011, to make it "Like it never even happened."

24 Hour Water Damage Service

11/10/2017 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Stoneham/ Wakefield is available 24 hours a day 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.

We Answer the Phone Ready to Help
Call Today - 781-245-0011

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 Stoneham/ Wakefield has the specific water damage training and experience to help you through this tough time. We specialize in water damage restoration—in fact, it's the cornerstone of our business.

What to Expect

When you call, we will ask several questions regarding your water 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 water-damaged home or business
  • When did the flooding or water damage occur?
  • What caused the water damage (if known)?
  • Is there electricity available (on-site)?

About SERVPRO of Stoneham/ Wakefield

SERVPRO of Stoneham/ Wakefield 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.

Fire Damage - Emergency Ready Profile

9/29/2017 (Permalink)

A fire in your home or business is nothing you ever planned on.  But it is something you can plan for by calling on the fire and water, cleanup and restoration specialist at SERVPRO of Stoneham/ Wakefield at 781-245-0011. That’s where you’ll find a team of professionals who are committed to helping you develop a plan to make sure you’re ready for whatever happens.   With an Emergency Ready Profile from SERVPRO of Stoneham/ Wakefield you’ll take confidence in knowing that when the things that matter most are on the line they will be too because you can’t keep fire damage from taking control of your home or business.  But with an Emergency Ready Profile, you can make sure it doesn’t take control of your life.  So before fire or water damage strikes, make sure you’re ready for whatever happens with SERVPRO of Stoneham/ Wakefield at 781-245-8222.  Helping make fire and water damage “Like it never even happened”.