Recent Posts

Coverage For Broken Pipes?

10/5/2021 (Permalink)

Accidental water damage is often part of dwelling coverage, personal property coverage and/or loss of use coverage. Speak to your insurance representative to make sure water damage is a covered loss in each of these home insurance policy components.

Dwelling Coverage

Dwelling coverage is a main component of a home insurance policy. It can help pay to rebuild or repair the physical structure of your home in the event of accidental water damage, fire, severe weather, vandalism or another covered cause of loss.

Your dwelling coverage limits are based on the estimated cost of rebuilding your home. It’s a good idea to check in with your insurance agent about your home’s replacement cost yearly, especially after making improvements. Even small improvements can affect the cost to rebuild your home.

Property Coverage

Person property coverage helps cover your belongings, such as furniture, clothing, sporting goods or electronics, in the event of a covered loss – whether they get damaged at your home, apartment or anywhere in the world.

In the case of accidental water damage from a burst pipe, this means payment for professional cleaning or replacement of furniture and personal belongings, as long as accidental water damage is a covered cause of loss in your policy.

Many policies provide for personal property to be covered at actual cash value rather than replacement cost. You may be able to enhance your policy with full replacement cost coverage.

Upgrade Your Washing Machine Hoes

10/5/2021 (Permalink)

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 comes 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 to 70 psi. If your home’s water pressure exceeds 100 psi, install a pressure regulator (which is available at hardware stores as well.) 

SERVPRO of River Oaks is here for all of your restoration needs.

Mold vs Mildew

9/16/2021 (Permalink)

What are mold and mildew?

Mold is a type of fungi that grows in the natural environment. Tiny particles are indoors and out, thriving on moisture and high humidity levels

Mildew is a type of fungi as well and is referred to as a kind of mold or mold in its early stages. It can be downy or powdery. Downy mildew appears as yellow spots that become brighter, then turn brown. Powdery mildew is whitish, turning yellowish-brown before becoming black. Mold has a fuzzy appearance and can be orange, green, black, brown, pink, or purple in color.

Mold produces spores — microscopic cells that spread through the air, by water or insects, acting like seeds, creating new mold colonies when they land in just the right setting.

Stop The Leak, Dry ASAP!

9/16/2021 (Permalink)

Act Quickly to Stop a Leak

Another important thing to know for how to prevent mold after water damage is how to act quick in an emergency. A gushing plumbing leak can dump several gallons per minute into your home. You have to act fast to stop the stream. Shutting off the main water valve is an obvious move. But there may still be a few gallons of water held in pipes above the leak. Turn on the lowest faucet in the house, which will let the water harmlessly drain out of the faucet instead of through the leaking pipe.

Don't Delay Cleanup

The longer things stay wet, the more likely you’ll have permanent damage. Delay can also lead to mold problems inside walls, which can cost thousands to eradicate. So before you run off to buy plumbing parts, clean up the mess. Pronto.

Filing A Claim.

9/16/2021 (Permalink)

A dark sky with purple clouds and lightning strikes and the SERVPRO logo Call SERVPRO of River Oaks today at 713-666-9222

The sad truth of the matter is that if your home has been hit by lightning, you’ll need to file a claim.

The good news is that this is exactly the reason why you have insurance, and your agent, company and adjuster will work together to help get you back to where you were before this happened.

Filing a claim is easy, and you can do it as soon as you realize you are safe. Or you can wait until the next day when you’re in a better state of mind.

  • Report the claim to your insurance carrier. While your agent would like to know that you are safe, the first order of business is to let your insurance company know that there has been lightning damage. They are the ones with the claims department and will be in charge of getting you the funds you need to repair or rebuild.
  • Tell your agent. You can call, email, text, use the app – whatever method you prefer to let them know. Some agents even have an online form for reporting claims. This would be a good time to discuss the damage that you’ve had, any dangers that might still be present, and what advice they have for keeping you safe.
  • Communicate with your adjuster. Once your adjuster has called you back, make sure to get them the information that they need so you can get the claim handled correctly. Give them all of the pictures you took of the damage so they can see what happened and maybe note any items that were damaged that you forgot about.

Once you’ve taken these steps, you will be well on your way to getting your homemade whole again.

Hurricane Aftermath

9/16/2021 (Permalink)

A close up picture of cars at a stop sogn with a tree on top of it and the SERVPRO logo at the bottom Call SERVPRO of River Oaks during hurricane season, we are here to help. 713-666-9222

First, evacuate if you are directed to do so or if you feel it might be unsafe to remain in your home. If you remain in your home, follow these tips to help you and your family stay safe during the storm:

Use a portable radio to listen to important storm updates, information and instructions.
Stay inside and keep away from all windows, skylights and glass doors. Go to a safe area, such as an interior room, closet or downstairs bathroom.
Never go outside the protection of your home or shelter before there is confirmation that the storm has passed the area. The eye of the storm could create a temporary and deceptive lull, with high winds still approaching.
If power is lost, keep the refrigerator closed to keep cold air trapped and delay spoilage of perishable food.
If you use a portable generator, follow all the manufacturer’s instructions. Generators should be properly grounded to prevent electrical shock and should never be operated indoors, in garages, basements or outdoors near any windows, doors or vents. Because generators produce carbon monoxide (CO), make sure you have a working CO detector in your home

No Soap and Water

9/14/2021 (Permalink)

Skip The Soap And Water

While soap and water may be an old standby for most house-cleaning jobs, it’s just not strong enough to kill mold spores. Instead, go for a commercial cleaner specifically designed to combat mold and mildew, or—if you’re uncomfortable using manufactured cleaners—use undiluted vinegar. 

Working in one small area at a time, wipe the bulk of the mold off of nonporous surfaces using a cloth or sponge, and then use a scrub brush on stubborn patches or porous surfaces. Rinse the spot with plenty of hot water afterward. (Note: respect the laws of gravity by starting from the top of the mold patch. That way, the mess won’t run down into already-cleaned areas as you go!)

SERVPRO of River Oaks is here for all of your restoration needs.

Flooding Impact On Schools

9/7/2021 (Permalink)

Flooding at educational institutes

Flooding due to storms or leaks can disrupt the functioning of educational institutes and the routine of their students. SERVPRO explains below the impact of floods on a school and the immediate steps the staff must take.

Impact of floods on schools

1. Mold and odors:

The extent of water damage caused by floods varies on the time it takes to mitigate and restore a property. One of the common consequences of water damage is mold growth caused by the moist environment. The presence of mold leads to a musty smell that lingers long after the water has been removed. This smell can prove to be very bothersome for the teachers as well as the students. More importantly, if the mold remediation has not been done correctly, the occupants of the school are at risk of several health effects due to the mold spores in the air. 

The SERVPRO team ensures that after the water mitigation, mold remediation, and deodorization, the harmful mold colonies and the lingering musty smell are removed completely.

2. Loss of educational content:

Books, computers, projectors, and miscellaneous educational materials are vulnerable to water and can be seriously damaged. The SERVPRO team can coordinate the restoration of electronic devices such as computers. Moreover, SERVPRO’s document restoration facility has innovative technology and a full range of services to restore documents as well as digitize them. However, to restore these contents, time is of the essence. The sooner the damage is addressed, the higher the chances of saving the contents.

3. Damage to furniture, carpets, and upholstery:

Wood absorbs water quickly due to its porous nature. This leads to warping, flaking, blistering, and weakening of the furniture. This further diminishes the lifespan of the furniture and leads to an increase in costs for school administrators and local government units. Contents such as carpets and upholstery also get damaged due to flooding at schools. The SERVPRO team has the expertise to gauge if the furniture, carpets, and upholstery can be saved. However, if the items have been submerged in water for too long, a replacement is the likely outcome.

4. Food and water contamination:
Floodwater that reaches the school’s cafeteria or finds its way to pipelines that supply water is a serious health hazard. Flooding caused by sewage leaks or storms carries chemicals, pesticides, and bacterial diseases that can cause serious harm to health if ingested. This is the most serious category of water damage called “black water”. The authorities must contact a professional team such as SERVPRO to take care of this situation at the earliest.

5. Fire and electric hazards:

Floodwater can permeate floors, ceilings, and walls. This moisture eventually reaches the electrical wiring and power outlets leading to potential electrocution or a fire. 

Steps to take when the school is flooded

1. Alert the maintenance team: The maintenance staff of the school has the training to handle emergencies such as flooding. Alerting them is the first step to ensure that correct safety measures are taken on time. A trained team can contain this situation by immediately following the emergency procedures. 

2. Evacuate: Calmly escort students to a safer place if the school is functional when the flood happens. Do a headcount and ensure the safety of the students as well as the other staff. Usually, students and staff have undergone multiple drills that are mandatory for educational institutes to conduct. So the safe zone and the protocol would not be new to the students and staff.  

3. Switch off the power: The general electric switch must be switched off if it’s not located in the flooded area. This diminishes the chances of electrocution and electrical fires.

4. Identify and shut off the water source: Flooding caused by anything other than natural disasters has a source that can be switched off. It is crucial to identify this course to halt the water damage. From a burst pipe, an overflowing toilet to a leaking water heater, there are multiple reasons for flooding. 

Most importantly, authorities must contact a professional water damage restoration company such as SERVPRO to address the water damage at the earliest. The SERVPRO team can swiftly respond to the disaster situation and immediately begin the mitigation and restoration work to ensure that the school can begin functioning as soon as possible.


  • SERVPRO uses state-of-the-art equipment to bring the damaged property back to its original state. SERVPRO of River Oaks is always updating its fleet and equipment so clients in Houston, or anywhere else can quickly access the services. 
  • With over 1,700 US and Canadian Franchise locations, SERVPRO is strategically positioned to respond faster to an emergency of any magnitude.
  • The SERVPRO staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. They receive initial in-house training and constant skill up-gradation at the corporate training facility and also acquire the regular IICRC-industry certification.

For water damage restoration services, call SERVPRO of River Oaks today at (713) 666-9222

6 Ways To Prevent Mold Growth

9/7/2021 (Permalink)

6 ways to prevent mold growth in commercial buildings

Mold grows and spreads swiftly in the presence of moisture and heat. Many building materials provide suitable nutrients that encourage mold to grow. Wet cellulose materials, including paper and paper products, cardboard, ceiling tiles, wood, and wood products, offer a perfect environment for the growth of some molds. Other materials such as dust, paints, wallpaper, insulation materials, drywall, carpet, fabric, and upholstery, also support mold growth. 

If left undetected and unchecked, mold can potentially cause several health effects.

SERVPRO of River Oaks mold removal experts shares the numerous measures business owners can take to prevent mold growth in their commercial buildings:

  1. Regular inspection

Often, spores multiply long before anyone notices. This is usually the case in areas that are not obvious or are hidden from view, such as underneath sinks and around window frames. Therefore, it is advisable to have a regular mold inspection protocol, especially in building areas or geographical locations where the moisture level is bound to be high. Mold must never be approached without gloves or masks.

  1. Timely repair 

Any repairs, major or minor, must be made at the earliest because the longer the issues are neglected, the larger the problem becomes. Water leakage of any sort, especially plumbing leaks, must be addressed immediately by a professional water and mold remediation company before it grows into a full-blown water and mold damage disaster. 

  1. Minimize moisture

Mold thrives on moisture. Signs of condensation and wet spots around the building foundation, roofs, windows, or ceilings are red flags that must be addressed swiftly to prevent water and structural damage. The following steps could be taken to combat excessive moisture:

  1. Insulation: Poor insulation can cause moisture build-up indoors, raising the cooling and heating costs. Proper insulation can reduce heat transfer that causes moisture buildup, preventing the air from outside from getting inside and vice versa.
  2. Ventilation: It is crucial to keep the air flowing throughout a building to avoid moisture. Adequate ventilation and change of filters help increase the airflow and keep moisture at bay. 
  3. Dehumidification: Indoor humidity should be below 60% relative humidity or 30-50%, if possible. Dehumidifiers are ideal for this purpose.
  4. Unobstructed drip pans: Keep any heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) drip pans clean, sloped, and flowing properly as they can provide an ideal environment for mold to thrive.

  1. Service the HVAC unit

The HVAC system must always be clean and well-maintained. Replacing air filters regularly, applying an HVAC mold inhibitor, using a disinfectant before applying mold inhibitor, keeping the ducts dry, and checking for air intakes should be a part of an HVAC strategy to combat mold growth. 

A complicated HVAC system may, however, require professional assistance.

  1. Dry foundation

The grade around the building should slope away from the foundation so there is no water pooling. The grade may deteriorate over time and should be checked periodically. The drainage should also be checked for any debris and clogs to ensure proper flow. 

  1. Flat roof drainage 

A flat commercial roof generally has poor drainage due to design issues. Well-maintained rain gutters, scuppers, and inner drains can help with the proper drainage and keep mold at bay. 

Mold can be controlled through regular commercial building maintenance and inspections combined with the proper design, installation, and maintenance of commercial HVAC systems. 

For commercial cleaning services and mold removal, commercial property owners can reach out to a professional team such as SERVPRO of River Oaks. 


  • SERVPRO uses state-of-the-art equipment to bring the damaged property back to its original state. SERVPRO of River Oaks is always updating its fleet and equipment so clients in Hurst,  or anywhere else can quickly access the services. 
  • With over 1,700 US and Canadian Franchise locations, SERVPRO is strategically positioned to respond faster to an emergency of any magnitude.
  • The SERVPRO staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. They receive initial in-house training and constant skill up-gradation at the corporate training facility and also acquire the regular IICRC-industry certification.

What To Do After A Fire

9/7/2021 (Permalink)

A black background with orange fire in the middle and the SERVPRO logo at the bottom. Call SERVPRO of River Oaks for your restoration needs at 713-666-9222.

Post-fire checklist

There are multiple reasons a fire may occur at a home. Once the fire is extinguished, there are hundreds of things that need to be taken care of besides the fire damage restoration of the home itself. SERVPRO understands how daunting a challenge this can be, and shares a simple post-fire checklist that homeowners can use to decide their next steps.

1. Contact family

A fire is a traumatic event that can overwhelm. It is a time when everyone needs support from family and friends. Letting family and friends know about the incident is important to begin the process of rehabilitation and restoration.

Also, inform the property owners immediately so they can take steps regarding their property and recovery.  

2. Call insurance company

Notify the insurance agent to begin the claim process immediately. Until the fire is reported to the insurance company, repairs cannot begin. And the longer the repairs are delayed the worse the damage can become. Once the process begins, an insurance agent can handle property emergencies, lodging, and living expenses.

Contact the personal bank, mortgage lender, auto insurance agent (in case of vehicle damage), and utility company. Notification of the fire damage event to these entities may provide relief from late fees on payments while the restoration work takes place.

Fire damage restoration companies like SERVPRO work with insurance companies by providing repair estimates and helping with claims. Make sure to get a copy of the fire report which is helpful in providing more information for the insurance agency.

3. Get the property assessed 

An insurance adjuster is likely to visit to evaluate the fire damage to the house. This evaluation will determine if the home can be saved, or if it must be demolished and rebuilt.

In case the house can be saved, a professional fire damage and water damage restoration company like SERVPRO can come to the rescue. Besides the direct damage from the fire, damage caused by heat, smoke, and soot will also need redressal. The water damage caused by fire extinguishing activities is another aspect that must be addressed at the earliest to avoid secondary water damage such as mold.

Fire damage often runs deep and it takes a professional restoration team’s skills and state-of-the-art equipment to detect and amend the damage that may be invisible to the inexperienced eye. 

4. Get clearance to enter the house 

Await a clearance from the fire department before entering the house that has been damaged by fire. There is often hidden damage that can lead to the fire restarting. Damaged roofs and floors could also collapse and cause serious injury. Additionally, there are health effects associated with inhaling smoke and soot that must be addressed before moving back in.

Entering the house too soon can also impact the insurance claim so it’s advised to await the green signal from the fire department and the insurance company. 

5. Organize the possessions

Segregating the damaged and undamaged items in the house helps to be more organized. A list of all undamaged articles along with their details such as model number, current price, and receipts is very useful while filing an insurance claim. Providing photos of these items is also advisable.   

Undamaged items must be removed from the fire-damaged property to protect them from looting. These items can be stored safely in a rented storage unit restoration of the house is complete. 

This assessment of damaged contents can be done by the homeowner or a professional restoration company. A professional restoration team will be able to assess if certain items can be restored or not. This can help reduce the claim and also help save valuable items that can’t be replaced with money.

6. Find a place to stay while the house gets restored

Until a professional team has restored the house and disposed of all unsafe elements including mold, smoke, soot, and unstable structures, the homeowner would need another place to stay. Most insurance policies will pay for the food, clothing, and shelter for a specified period of time. Homeowners can contact local disaster relief services such as the American Red Cross, government agencies, the local church, or family and friends for a safe and temporary place to stay in until the house is restored. 

After a fire event, it is crucial to take care of one’s mental, emotional, and physical well-being. So a comfortable place to stay is crucial.

7. Restore, rebuild, and move forward

With the help of the insurance agent and a professional restoration company like SERVPRO, homeowners can begin the task of restoring and rebuilding their homes and eventually return to their lives. 

It is important to deal with the right fire damage restoration company to ensure that the restoration work is accurate, economical, and swift.


  • SERVPRO uses state-of-the-art equipment to bring the damaged property back to its original state. SERVPRO of River Oaks is always updating its fleet and equipment so clients in Houston or anywhere else can quickly access the services. 
  • With over 1,700 US and Canadian Franchise locations, SERVPRO is strategically positioned to respond faster to an emergency of any magnitude.
  • The SERVPRO staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. They receive initial in-house training and constant skill up-gradation at the corporate training facility and also acquire the regular IICRC-industry certification.