Recent Posts

How Long Does It Take for a Roof Leak to Cause a Mold Infestation?

5/15/2023 (Permalink)

Mold growing in the corner of a wall. To prevent mold growth, it is important to address a roof leak promptly and to dry out the affected areas as quickly as possible.

A roof leak can be a frustrating and potentially costly issue for homeowners, and one of the concerns associated with a roof leak is the potential for mold growth. In this blog post, we'll explore how long it takes for a roof leak to cause a mold infestation and what steps you can take to prevent mold growth.

Timeline for Mold Growth

The timeline for mold growth can vary depending on a number of factors, including the severity of the leak, the temperature and humidity of the environment, and the type of materials affected. In general, mold can begin to grow within 24 to 48 hours of a water intrusion event, such as a roof leak.

Signs of Mold Growth

At first, mold growth may not be visible, as it can occur in hidden areas such as behind walls, under carpeting, or in insulation. Over time, however, mold growth can become more visible, with signs such as a musty odor, discoloration, or even visible mold growth on surfaces.

Preventing Mold Growth

To prevent mold growth from a roof leak, it is important to address the leak promptly. This may involve repairing the roof, replacing damaged roofing materials, or addressing any underlying issues that may be contributing to the leak, such as clogged gutters or inadequate ventilation.

Drying Out Affected Areas

Once the leak has been addressed, it is important to dry out the affected areas as quickly as possible to prevent mold growth. This may involve using fans, dehumidifiers, or even professional drying equipment to ensure that all moisture has been eliminated.

Addressing Existing Mold Growth

If mold growth has already occurred, it is important to address it promptly to prevent further damage. This may involve removing affected materials, such as drywall or insulation, and cleaning and disinfecting the area with specialized equipment and cleaning solutions.

How a Professional Can Help Address Mold Growth from a Roof Leak

In some cases, a roof leak and resulting mold growth may be too extensive for homeowners to handle on their own. In these instances, it may be necessary to enlist the help of a professional disaster restoration company, such as SERVPRO of Jacksonville South. These professionals have specialized training and equipment to address mold growth safely and effectively, minimizing the risk of further damage or recontamination. With their expertise, they can also help identify and address underlying issues that may be contributing to the roof leak, ensuring that the problem is fully resolved and that your home is protected from future mold growth.

In conclusion, a roof leak can lead to mold growth within 24 to 48 hours if left unaddressed. To prevent mold growth, it is important to address a roof leak promptly and to dry out the affected areas as quickly as possible. If mold growth has already occurred, it is important to address it promptly to prevent further damage. By being proactive, you can protect your home and prevent costly damage from mold growth.

Guide to Making an Insurance Claim After a Fire in Your Home or Business

4/12/2023 (Permalink)

A home with roof damage caused by a fire. Damage to your home can be devastating and traumatic.

Experiencing a fire in your home or business can be a devastating and traumatic experience. In addition to the emotional toll, it can also cause extensive damage to your property and belongings. This is where insurance comes in to provide some relief from the financial burden of the damage caused by the fire. In this blog post, we will go through the steps to make an insurance claim after a fire.

Step 1: Contact your insurance company

The first thing you should do after a fire is to contact your insurance company as soon as possible. This will enable them to begin processing your claim and get the process moving. The insurance company will assign a claims adjuster to your case who will guide you through the process.

Step 2: Document the damage

Take photographs and videos of the damage caused by the fire. This will help the insurance company assess the extent of the damage and determine the appropriate amount of compensation you are entitled to.

Step 3: Protect your property from further damage

It is important to prevent further damage to your property after a fire. Cover any exposed areas with plastic or tarps to protect them from the elements. If you are not able to stay in your home or business, make sure to secure the property to prevent theft or vandalism.

Step 4: Gather important documents

Gather any important documents related to your property such as your insurance policy, receipts, and invoices for any repairs or replacements you have made in the past.

Step 5: Work with the claims adjuster

Once the claims adjuster is assigned to your case, they will work with you to assess the damage and determine the appropriate amount of compensation. Be sure to provide the adjuster with all the information they need to process your claim. This may include a list of damaged items, estimates for repairs, and any other relevant information.

Step 6: Keep track of expenses

Keep track of any expenses related to the fire, such as hotel bills, meals, and other costs incurred as a result of the fire. These expenses may be covered by your insurance policy.

Step 7: Review the settlement offer

After the adjuster has assessed the damage, they will provide you with a settlement offer. Review the offer carefully and make sure you understand what is covered and what is not. If you have any questions or concerns, do not hesitate to contact the adjuster for clarification.

Step 8: Accept the settlement offer

If you agree to the settlement offer, sign the necessary paperwork and receive your payment. If you are not satisfied with the settlement offer, you can negotiate with the insurance company or hire a public adjuster to help you get a better offer.

In conclusion, making an insurance claim after a fire requires patience, attention to detail, and good communication with your insurance company. By following these steps, you can ensure that your claim is processed efficiently and that you receive the compensation you are entitled to. Remember, the most important thing is to take care of yourself and your loved ones during this difficult time.

5 Steps To Keeping Your Business Running After A Loss

3/9/2023 (Permalink)

office water damge Having a plan for your commercial water damage is important to keep from business interruptions.

A crisis can be devastating for a business. Even if you're prepared, dealing with a loss can be stressful and overwhelming. However, having a plan in place before a crisis occurs can help ease the process and ensure your company's continued growth and success. Here are five steps to keep your business running after a loss.

What is a business continuity plan?

A business continuity plan (BCP) is a document that helps you react and recover from a disaster. It should include your company's key processes, data, technology and people. A BCP can help you get back to normal operations as quickly as possible after a disruption or disaster.

The goal of creating an effective BCP is to reduce the impact of disruptions on your organization by identifying potential risks and developing response strategies in advance so that when the time comes for action, everyone knows what needs to be done without having to think about it.

Step 1: Determine risks and potential impact

You can't plan for everything, but it's important to identify the risks and potential impact of each risk. For example:

  • Identify the risks, such as data breaches or natural disasters.
  • Determine the likelihood of each risk occurring (i.e., how likely is it that someone will hack into your system?).
  • Determine the impact if a particular risk does occur (what happens if someone hacks into your system?). 

Step 2: Create an effective response plan

The next step is to create an effective response plan for your business. The first thing you'll want to do is identify the different types of risks that could affect your business, and then create a plan for each type of risk. For example, if there's a fire in your building, what would happen? What if someone stole something from your office or hacked into your system? What about natural disasters like floods or hurricanes? These are just some examples--you should think about all possible emergencies and create plans for how each one might be handled.

Step 3: Determine roles and responsibilities

The next step is to define roles and responsibilities. Who will do what? Who will be in charge of communicating with whom? Who will make decisions, and who will be the contact person for all things related to this loss?

This is an important step because it creates a clear plan of who is in charge of what, making sure there is no stone left unturned. It is also important because it allows you to determine if there are any gaps in your team's knowledge or skill set that need addressing before the business can move forward again.

Step 4: Create a clear line of communication

The fourth step to keeping your business running after a loss is to have a clear line of communication. Communication is vital in any business, but it's especially important when trying to keep things going when something goes wrong.

Step 5: Regular training

The final step in keeping your business running after a loss is to ensure that employees are trained on how to follow the procedures outlined in the business continuity plan. This can be done through a variety of methods, including classroom instruction or online training modules. It's important to note that regular testing and training should also be implemented as part of this process; it's not enough for employees simply to learn about their roles during initial implementation--they need continued reinforcement so they know what they're doing when an emergency strikes.

The last thing you want is to be caught off-guard by a crisis. By taking the time to plan ahead of time and develop a business continuity plan, you can be sure that your company will remain operational after an emergency situation. The five steps outlined above will help guide you through this process and ensure that your business survives any disaster.

Fire Protection Tips for Your Valuables

2/9/2023 (Permalink)

fire escape plan Have a plan in place incase of a fire to protect your home or business.

Fires can be devastating. While your insurance company might provide some protection, it's important to take steps to protect yourself from fire as much as possible. You should also know what to do if a fire does start in your home or office so that you are prepared for any situation. Here are some tips on how to protect yourself from a fire.

Prepare your property with Fire-Resistant Materials

Fire-resistant materials and products are designed to withstand the heat of a fire, so they can help you protect your valuables. Fire-resistant walls, choose drywall with low or medium combustibility. Consider using noncombustible panels if you're renovating an older building, as they offer better protection than standard drywall.

You can also choose fire-rated exterior walls, which are made of high-density concrete or metal and are required in some areas by building codes. Fire-resistant flooring, make sure that any new hardwood floors have been treated with a flame retardant coating or have been certified as having been kiln dried at high temperatures (above 160°C).

If you're replacing carpeting in your home or office, consider installing ceramic tile flooring instead—it has excellent insulating properties for its weight and is far less flammable than traditional latex foam padding underneath carpets.

Install Smoke Alarms

Install smoke alarms on every level of your home, including the basement. Smoke alarms should be tested monthly and replaced every 10 years. If you experience a power outage, change your smoke alarm batteries immediately to ensure that it is functional when power is restored. Smoke alarms should also be replaced immediately if they are damaged by water or fire.

Evacuation Plan

It is important to have an evacuation plan and practice your evacuation plan regularly, especially with children. If a fire did start in your home, everyone would need to know where to go and how to call for help. You should also make sure that everyone knows what to do if they can't get out of the house on their own.

Smoke Detectors and Fire Extinguishers

Smoke detectors are a must, especially in bedrooms. They should be installed on every level of your home and in the basement, garage, and anywhere else you store valuable items. You should make sure that you have an adequate number of fire extinguishers in the right locations throughout your home and office and make sure you know how to use them. Also inspect them to make sure they are properly labeled and in good working order.

Don’t let a fire in your home or business ruin all of your valuable possessions. Take these tips to heart and make sure you are prepared for anything. Remember that you should always call 911 if you see flames or smoke, even if it means just going outside until the fire department arrives on the scene.

Hurricane Safety Tips

1/10/2023 (Permalink)

White van driving through flooded street Never drive through a flooded street.

Hurricanes are dangerous for everyone, but older adults, in particular, need to take extra precautions to stay safe during a storm. If you live in an area that experiences hurricanes or tropical storms, it's important that you prepare before disaster strikes. This can help keep both your home and your health protected when bad weather hits!

Avoid Flooded Areas

To keep yourself safe, avoid areas where flood waters have risen significantly. Flood water may be contaminated with sewage and other hazardous materials like oil. It can also sweep you away if it’s moving quickly.

Follow Evacuation Instructions

Evacuation instructions will be given by local authorities. If you are told to evacuate, follow those instructions and go to a safe location. If you have pets, make sure they are with you in the car or escape vehicle of your choice. If you have elderly or disabled family members who cannot travel on their own, get them to a safe place as well.

If an evacuation order is given, do not delay! Everyone should leave as soon as possible because delays could put lives at risk.

Know Your Area’s Risk

You should know the risk of floods and landslides in your area. These natural disasters can be very dangerous and cause damage to homes, roads and property.

Floods are often caused by heavy rain or snow melt, which causes rivers or streams to overflow their banks. Flooding can also occur when dams break, after earthquakes or during hurricanes. The United States Geological Survey (USGS) has a "flood map" that shows areas at risk for flooding based on elevation above sea level and rainfall data from historical events. This map can help you determine if your home is at risk for flooding.

Plan and Practice

Know your area’s risk of floods and landslides. Know where you can go if you need to evacuate. Practice driving routes to your safe location. If possible, leave early enough that roads are less congested for other people who may be evacuating as well.

Prepare an Emergency Kit and Make a Family Communications Plan

To prepare for a hurricane or storm:

  • Make an emergency kit that includes a battery-powered radio, flashlight, first-aid kit, water (1 gallon per person per day,) non-perishable food, and extra batteries.
  • Get your car’s emergency kit out of the trunk and learn how to use it.
  • Make sure you have enough water, food and medication for your family.
  • Make plans for reuniting with your family after the storm if they are not at home.

Download the Emergency App

Download the emergency app to receive real-time alerts and information on severe weather in your area. You will need a data plan with your wireless carrier to use this app. Please check with your carrier for details on how much it will cost to add a new line or change your current plan. Make sure you have enough space on your phone for the app.

Do not Drive Around Barricades or Through Flooded Roads

As you are making your way through the storm and trying to stay safe, there are certain things you should not do. Do not drive around barricades or through flooded roads. If you encounter a barricade, do not try to drive around it. The police officers who placed these barricades there have done so to keep people out of danger.

Do not drive into water that is over your vehicle's fenders or deeper than 12 inches; if your car stalls, abandon it immediately and seek higher ground before the water rises further. Do not attempt to cross bridges that have been flooded; instead take an alternate route until after heavy rains subside when these structures have had time to dry out and stabilize themselves against any possible collapse due to fractures in their foundations or structural integrity issues caused by flooding damage over time (which could happen during even small amounts of rainfall).


It is important that you become familiar with hurricanes to ensure your safety in the event of one hitting your location.

Preparing for a hurricane:

  • Install hurricane shutters on windows and doors. In some cases, these can be purchased from stores that sell storm-related products. If you are unable to find them in stores, they can also be found online or purchased from a local contractor who specializes in installing them for homes and businesses.
  • Fill any containers with water (buckets, trash cans) so that you have access to clean drinking water if needed during or after an emergency situation like a hurricane strike. Keep them stored away from windows where rain could enter into these containers and contaminate whatever water remains inside once it rains heavily during landfall season (June through November).

It's also smart not only because it makes sense but because locals know how dangerous it can get when there's no power available -- especially in places where temperatures rise above 90 degrees Fahrenheit!

We hope that you have learned a lot from these tips. We want everyone to be safe in the event of a hurricane, but we also know that it is important for people to take action on their own behalf. The more prepared you are, the better off you are going to be when something like this happens.

What Is The Difference Between Mold and Mildew?

12/7/2022 (Permalink)

Plant with mildew Mold and mildew grow on plants

Mold and Mildew – What’s the difference?

Mold and mildew are both types of fungus that grow on the surfaces of your home, but there are a few key differences between the two. While mold grows from moisture and thrives in dark, damp places, mildew loves light and humidity. Here are some tips for identifying these common household pests and getting rid of them.

What is Mold?

Mold is a fungus that grows in damp places. It's usually black, green, or brown. Mold can grow on food, in your home, and even on furniture and clothing. If you have it on any of these things, you should call a professional immediately so that it doesn't get worse!

What is Mildew?

Mildew is a type of fungus that can grow on many different surfaces, also including fabrics, food products, and plant leaves. While mildew looks similar to mold in some cases (it can be white or gray), there are some key differences between the two that help you determine whether you're dealing with mold or mildew.

Mildew grows in moist areas and can appear as a powdery substance on surfaces like shower curtains or tiles. If left untreated for too long, it will start to smell bad and damage your belongings. To prevent this from happening to your home's valuables like furniture or clothing items:

  • Avoid storing damp items together in one place (e.g., towels next to swimsuits)
  • Clean up spills immediately so they don't get wet again later

What is the difference between mold and mildew? 

Mold and mildew are both fungi, but they are different from each other in many ways. Mold is a type of fungus with hyphae, whereas mildew is a type of fungus with spores. These differences can make it difficult for people to tell the difference between mold and mildew. Both types of fungi grow on plants as well as in homes and buildings where there is moisture present (i.e., humidity).

How to Get Rid of Mold and Mildew in Your Home

If you have mold and mildew in your home, the first step is to get rid of it. To do this, you should use a dehumidifier to reduce moisture levels in the air, which will prevent future growth. If you don't want to spend money on a full-size unit for your entire house (which can be expensive), try investing in one that's designed specifically for small spaces like bathrooms or closets. There are also smaller versions available so you can put them wherever they fit best.

The best step to take if you discover mold growth in your home is to call a certified mold remediation specialist, such as SERVPRO of Jacksonville South. They can take care of any size mold remediation necessary or give you tips on how to take care of your mold growth on your own if the mold growth isn’t too serious. 

How to Prevent Mold Growth and Mildew 

You can prevent mold growth by keeping the humidity level in your home around 50% and ventilating the house. This is especially important if you have a basement or crawlspace, as these areas are usually damp.

Keep your house clean by cleaning up spills immediately and removing any mold or mildew you see growing.

If you find yourself with an infestation of mold or mildew, it may be best to hire professionals who know how to properly remove it so that they don't cause further damage to your home during the process.

The difference between mold and mildew is that mold is a fungus that grows on damp or wet surfaces, while mildew is a type of fungus that grows on dry surfaces. Both are unsightly and can be dangerous to the structure and belongings of your home if you don't take care of them quickly. 

Water Damage Tips

11/1/2022 (Permalink)

Mold growth on a wall due to humidity Mold is a common problem after water damage.

6 Water Damage Restoration Tips Everyone Should Know

Water damage is a serious issue that can significantly impact your property, safety, and finances. It is important to know how to deal with water damage in order to limit the damage it does and get your home back in shape quickly. Often times people underestimate the extent of water damage and then end up spending thousands more than they would have if they called a professional restoration company right away. Here are six water damage tips everyone should know:

Do not wait to call a professional

Do not wait to call a professional. If you don’t, you could be left with a host of problems that will cost you more money and time than if you had called a water damage restoration company right away. Water damage can cause serious problems, mold growth, structural damage, and electrical issues as well as fire hazards and other concerns for your family members.

Shut off the power

Shut off the power (only if it is safe to do so). If you don’t know how to turn off the water or gas, call a professional. Using your electrical equipment after a water loss can be dangerous.

If you see any smoke or fire, shut off all utilities and leave the house immediately.

Inspect for Mold

Mold is a common problem after water damage. It can grow in as little as 48 hours, and it can cause serious problems. If you allow mold to grow and spread, it can cause significant damage to your home that takes time and money to remediate. 

Mold spores are usually found on organic matter like wood or paper products that have gotten wet recently (like from a leak). These spores propagate when they come in contact with moisture and create more mold colonies.

Dry Water Out

The third step in water damage restoration is to dry the area. To do this, you'll need to remove excess water from your home or business.

  • Use fans and dehumidifiers to dry out the area as quickly as possible.
  • If a wet/dry vacuum is available, use it to remove standing water.

Remove Damaged Materials

The next step is to remove any damaged materials. If you have water damage, you will want to take care of this as soon as possible. Materials, such as insulation and carpets, that have been affected by the water loss need to be disposed of. Failing to remove damaged materials can cause even more damage to your home.

Some materials can be repaired, but it is important that you allow the professionals to conduct the repairs and disinfection to ensure that it is clean and safe to bring back into your home.

Disinfect Remaining Areas

Lastly, it is important to disinfect the remaining areas. Depending on the type of water damage that you have experienced, your property can be covered in bacteria and viruses. To keep yourself and others on your property safe, it is important to disinfect the remaining areas. Disinfection can also prevent mold growth.

Water damage recovery is best done by professional restoration companies

In the aftermath of a water damage event, you’re likely to be feeling stressed and overwhelmed. The last thing you want to worry about is how to effectively repair the damage and restore your home back to its normal state.

Even if the damage is not too severe and you think you can handle it yourself, remember that water damage restoration requires special equipment and expertise. You should always call a professional when dealing with such a serious matter. Our SERVPRO of Jacksonville South team is always here to help!

How Much Revenue Can I lose After a Fire?

10/8/2022 (Permalink)

Visible damage to a commercial building following a structure fire Commercial fire damage in Jacksonville, FL.

How Much Income Can I Lose Following a Fire?

After a fire, you need to make sure that your business is able to get back on its feet as soon as possible. This means making sure that you have the right insurance coverage in place and that a highly trained and experienced restoration company is onsite as quickly as possible. If you don't have the right coverage in place, it can lead to long-term consequences for your business.

Fire damage can lead to severe income loss.

Fire damage can lead to severe income loss and may even put you out of business. The time it takes to recover depends on the extent of the damage, but with proper management and planning, you can get back on track in no time.

How much time does it take for a business to recover financially after fire damage?

Your insurance company should have an estimate for how long it will take for you to get back on your feet financially after a fire. They do this by estimating how much revenue can be lost due to downtime and lost profits during that time period. 

How much revenue can I lose after a fire?

This is where things get tricky because we all know different industries will experience different levels of loss following the incident. If there's $1 million worth of property damage but only 30 days' loss in normal operations - then this could mean over $2 million dollars in damages overall!

Business income coverage addresses the revenue you lose from a fire.

Business income coverage is a form of property insurance that provides protection for business owners against the loss of revenue they might incur after a fire. These policies can help with operational expenses and repairs to your property, which means you won't have to take so much out of your bank account every month.

Your business insurance can help you continue operations in case of fire damage.

When your business is impacted by fire damage, you need to ensure that your financial needs are met. This type of coverage can help with the cost of cleanup and repairs, lost income, lost business records and inventory.

While a fire can be devastating, it's important to know that you can get back on your feet with the right insurance policies and the right restoration company helping you out.

The business interruption coverage option may help you continue operations after a fire. This policy pays for lost revenue if damaged inventory or equipment prevents you from opening your doors as usual. The good news is that business interruption coverage covers many kinds of losses and allows you to stay open for as long as possible after suffering from fire damage.

If your business suffers a fire, you may be able to recover some of the revenue losses with this kind of coverage. In any case, it’s important to have a good understanding of what your insurance will cover and how much you can expect to get back after a fire. If you are in need of fire damage cleanup and restoration services in Jacksonville, FL, don't hesitate and give our SERVPRO team a call today!

The Dirty Dozen: Black Water Facts

8/28/2022 (Permalink)

wet carpet, flooded building Flood damage to a building in Jacksonville, FL.

What Is Black Water and How To Treat It

A severe flood occurs in Jacksonville, FL, causing water damage to your commercial property. You contact your insurance agent and a storm restoration specialist. At this point, the experts inform you that the flooding consists of black water. What does this mean? Review the twelve facts below to learn about this type of water and how it is treated.

1. Blackwater is considered Category 3 water damage. Category 1 is clean water and Category 2 is gray water.

2. The color categories refer to contamination levels. Black is considered the most contaminated as it contains viruses, bacteria and microorganisms.

3. The source is important to differentiate between the levels. The most contaminated water comes from floodwaters or sewage backups.

4. Contaminated water may be hazardous to your health. Do not touch or ingest this water. Viruses may also be airborne. Specialists wear protective gear during mitigation efforts.

5. Cleanup of this type takes the most time and effort. Due to the impact of bacteria, professionals take extra caution and measures during the recovery process.

6. Storm restoration technicians set a containment area. To prevent secondary contamination by floodwater or airborne germs, the impacted area is sealed off.

7. Contaminated water is pumped out. Industrial pumps and vacuums remove excess stormwater.

8. Impacted, porous materials are removed. Items such as drywall and carpet padding soak up the infected water and must be disposed of properly.

9. Remaining areas are professionally dried. Moisture is monitored and removed from structures, contents and air.

10. Once dry, exposed contents are cleaned and disinfected. This process kills remaining germs and mold.

11. Air filtration devices sanitize the air. This removes any lingering germs and odors.

12. Rebuilding and restoring take place. Your property can be properly restored.

When your commercial property falls victim to water damage in Jacksonville, FL, it is critical to act fast. This is especially true when flooding results from storm water. Although mitigating contaminated black water is time-consuming, the process can help restore your business to pre-storm condition.

Why You Should Not File an Insurance Claim After Every Water Loss

8/28/2022 (Permalink)

Home insurance claim form Before you make an insurance claim, you should check your policy

You may be tempted to file an insurance claim following any water damage to your Deerwood, FL, home. However, if you make too many claims over a short period of time, your insurance company may refuse to renew your policy. Excessive claims could also raise your insurance rates.

When Insurance Rates Increase

There are several factors that determine the rates you pay on your insurance policy. Obviously, if the damage to your property was the result of your negligence, the insurer will charge you more money in the future. Other circumstances that could cause your rates to rise include:

  • A high number of previous claims
  • A low credit rating
  • Frequent natural disasters near your home

The rate hike could be as much as 40 percent. This increase could stay in effect for several years.

When To File a Claim
Before you make an insurance claim, you should check your policy to see if filing such a claim will increase your rates. Ideally, you should understand the consequences of making a claim well before your next water emergency.
Since a large number of claims can hike your rates, you should avoid filing claims unless absolutely necessary. If your home only sustains minor flood damage, you can afford cleanup and restoration services without involving your insurance provider.
Filing claims for large disasters only can save you money, as well. Decide how much you can afford to spend on any one loss. You can then put that amount into a savings account and increase your deductible to that same number. The savings account can collect additional interest, and your higher deductible should reduce your rates.
Making an insurance claim can cause your bill to increase. You should thus only file a claim following a large home flood or similar disaster. Minor repairs should not cost you that much money, so save your insurance for the major restorations.