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Cleaning a Sewer Backup

Cleaning a Sewer Backup

Written by jsolloway on . Posted in Blog, Water Damage.

In the event of a sewage backup in your home or business, it is important to evacuate all people and pets from the area.  Personal safety has to be prioritized if contaminated water is leaking into your property.  Sewage backups often come with copious amounts of bacteria that can be harmful if not cleaned up properly, so it is important to contact a restoration professional for help in the event of a major spill.

For All Sewage Spills, Use Caution During the Cleanup Process

For large sewage spills, the area should be cleared and a professional contacted to handle the clean-up.  Sewage contains bacteria that can be harmful to anyone exposed without taking the necessary safety precautions.  If the area is not cleaned and sanitized properly, the bacteria can remain and even spread long after the cleaning process.

If the sewer backup is minor and limited to one area such as the bathroom or a section of the kitchen, many people will choose to attempt cleaning it themselves.  The first step is to isolate the area to prevent contamination to other parts of the home or business.  The sewage water should be removed as soon as possible, all done while wearing protective gear including rubber gloves, rubber boots, protective eyewear and a face mask.

Remove any standing water with a wet / dry vacuum or a pump.  Items can then be removed from the area, tossing the property that was contaminated by the sewage.  If there is carpeting, rip up the carpeting and any padding underneath and dispose of this as well.  You can then begin the process of cleaning the area using a disinfectant solution on the floor, walls and any fixtures.  Don’t hesitate to continuously change the water and cleaning solution throughout the process, as it will become tainted.

Dry the Area after Cleaning and Disinfecting

After the contaminated area has been thoroughly cleaned and disinfected, you need ensure all areas are properly dried so that mold growth or rot does not occur in the long run.  Depending on the season, you may be able to open windows and setup fans. In most scenarios a dehumidifier and fans will work best.   

Once the work is done, properly dispose of the protective clothing that you wore during the process and immediately take a hot shower, using antibacterial soap.

The process of cleaning a sewage backup can not only be unpleasant, but it can also be dangerous if you are exposed to bacteria that it carries.  The restoration team at Soil-Away is experienced in these types of clean-ups.  Contact Soil-Away at 603-641-6555.

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sewer damage restoration - londonderry nh

Sewer Damage Restoration — Londonderry, NH

Written by jsolloway on . Posted in Blog, Water Damage.

A Londonderry mom was distraught to wake up and find contaminated black water in her home. Her sewage line broke, and she knew that her family was in immediate danger. She quickly evacuated her family to a safe location until the damage was repaired. After researching a few restoration companies in the area, she hired Soil-Away Cleaning and Restoration Services. She gave them a call and scheduled a time for an emergency sewer damage restoration cleanup. The crew quickly arrived on the scene in their special PPE suits and inspected the property for damage. They were kind, reassuring, and thorough, and they left the home owner with a comprehensive remediation plan so that the family was aware of the cleanup process beforehand.

Sewer Damage Restoration Services

Unlike the restoration of category one and two water loss, category three water loss is filled with harmful contaminants that could pose a threat to your health. Because of the level of risk, a higher level of precaution should be taken during the remediation process. The cleaning crew will arrive on the scene in special PPE gear, gloves, and masks to protect themselves from the pollutants in the water. Once all excess water is removed the sanitization, drying and remediation process can begin.

Unfortunately, during a major category three water loss, all affected porous and semi-porous material must be properly disposed of to prevent cross contamination from occurring. Carpet, drywall, insulation, and hardwood floors will be completely removed and discarded along with any porous items. The non-contaminated areas of the building will also be separated from the areas that have been impacted by the contaminated water and the drying process will take place. Once the previously wet areas have been sanitized and completely dried, the damaged structure materials can be replaced.  After every step has taken place, and the moisture meter readings are consistently reading within a safe range, the property would have undergone a successful sewer damage restoration cleanup.

Black Water Damage in Londonderry

Don’t let black water dampen your life! It’s dangerous and can pose a health risk to those you love. You do not want to try and clean it up yourself. Be smart. Call a professional for help. There are many professionals who are trained to handle dangerous situations like sewer damage restoration, fire damage cleanup, and mold removal, but why not choose a company that cares.

Soil Away is a family-owned and operated business that has worked hard to service the New England community for over 30 years. Their amazing customer service and positive attitude has helped turn a disastrous situation for their customers into a rewarding experience. Sewer damage cleanup is a big job, but you can leave it in the hands of qualified experts.

Soil-Away is there to turn your disaster situation around for you by delivering a clean, safe home! From sewer damage restoration to mold, smoke, or fire damage, the Soil-Away crew handles it all! The IICRC and Esporta-certified team is there to clean and restore your property damage as well as your soft contents/textiles. Don’t hesitate! Call the experts in sewer damage restoration at (603) 641-6555.  

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Repairing Water Damage - Rye, NH

What is the Best Way to Clean-Up Water Damage?

Written by jsolloway on . Posted in Blog, Water Damage.

When a flood has affected your home or business, immediately find the source of the water and shut this down.  If there is standing water, prioritize safety to avoid hazards such as slip-and-fall and electric shock.  A wet-shop vacuum or water pump can remove the standing water, and should be done immediately.  You can then ventilate the area, running dehumidifiers to start removing the excessive underlying moisture.

Identify Salvageable Items and Toss the Rest

The source of the water damage will impact the direction of the mitigation process. In a clean water loss, most items can be dried and salvaged. A water loss with contamination, like sewage, items such as carpet and padding underneath should be thrown out.  Removing the carpeting will also help to get the area dried out as quickly as possible.  Drywall and insulation that has been affected by contaminated water should be torn out and disposed of. 

Belongings that have been soaked with clean water may not only require drying out, but will also need to be sanitized.  This is particularly true for soft contents such as clothing, blankets and children’s plush toys.  Soft contents cleaning, available from Soil-Away, can ensure that these items are fully disinfected.

Disinfect the Area and Keep an Eye Out for Mold Growth

After the area has been dried thoroughly, the sanitization process can begin.  This will not only clean the area of any contaminants and bacteria, but it will also help to deter mold growth.  Strong cleaners, particularly those containing anti-microbial elements, can hinder bacteria growth that may be left behind.

Even after a thorough drying and disinfecting, the flooded area may still be at risk for mold growth.  Keep a vigilant eye out for any signs of mold growth, as it can spread rapidly to other areas.  If you do see signs of mold, have a professional address the situation. Trying to remove the mold yourself can cause the spores to travel through the air, affecting other areas of the home.

By quickly and efficiently addressing water damage in your home or business, you can head off any problems down the road as a result.  The restoration team at Soil-Away is experienced in mitigating flood damage.

With teams on call 24/7 contact Soil-Away at 603-641-6555 if your home is damaged by a flood.

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water damage cleanup - salem, nh

Water Damage Cleanup – Salem, New Hampshire

Written by jsolloway on . Posted in Blog, Water Damage.

“Help! I need water damage cleanup immediately!” This is what a Salem, New Hampshire woman yelled to her friend over the phone. She knew that her friend would know exactly what to do. She suffered a water loss recently and recovered quickly with a positive attitude about her experience, so she called to get a referral from someone she trusted.

After hearing the details about the situation, her friend recommended Soil-Away Cleaning and Restoration Services for help. The homeowner was nervous about calling for help. She dreaded the cost of repairs and contemplated restoring the home herself. But a little reassurance and education from her friend changed her outlook.

After the crew arrived on the scene, they worked to identify the source of the water loss and category of water damage. In this case, the damage was a simple category 1 (clean water) loss. The toilet supply line busted causing gallons of water to flood the entire bathroom and hallway of the single story dwelling. For the water damage cleanup process, the team worked to carefully detach baseboard and carpet before drying the hardwood floor underneath. To treat the damaged wood flooring, the crew used air movers and dehumidifiers to drive the moisture out of the material. Lastly, the floors were treated with an antimicrobial solution to reduce the occurrence of potential mold growth.

Water Damage Cleanup Process

A water damage cleanup process will not be the same for everyone. Some property owners need extensive restoration while others do not. Also, the category of water, which refers to the level of contamination, will determine what the cleanup process will look like.

There are three known categories of water losses, and the source of the water loss determines the category. Category 1 is clean water or water from a sink/faucet, hot water tanks, and supply lines. Category 2 can be described as contaminated water. This can come from fish tanks and washing machines. Category 3 water loss is dangerous and can pose harm to residents and unprotected individuals. This is described as black sewage contaminated water. The remediation of category 3 damage requires a special level of remediation and protection. Special PPE suits should be worn to protect against harmful pathogens, and unlike the other two categories, the use of dehumidifiers and fans can cause airborne toxins to cross-contaminate the property.

Water Damage Specialist in Salem, New Hampshire

Soil-Away Cleaning and Restoration Services is an experienced service provider that has helped New Hampshire residents fight major water losses for 30 years. Their in-depth knowledge of restoration and water damage cleanup has helped the community after major tragedies from water and mold to fire and smoke damage. The IICRC-certified team of experts is there to help you. Water damage cleanup is no match for the team of professionals. The restoration crew is not only equipped to handle any category of water loss, but they are at standby to help transform your damaged personal heirlooms and materials into clean and sanitized momentos and personal treasures. If you have soft materials or textiles that have been harmed during a disaster, the Esporta-certified crew is equipped to cleanup and restore the damage. Don’t hesitate to call Soil-Away for emergency water damage cleanup at 603-641-6555. You’ll be glad that you did!

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water damage cleanup company - hollis, nh

Water Damage Cleanup Company – Hollis, NH

Written by jsolloway on . Posted in Blog, Water Damage.

Excessive rain in Hollis, NH, left a farm in need of a water damage cleanup company.  Upon inspection of the property, the owners of the farm realized massive ground water flooding was damaging the inside of their barns and farmhouse.  Because there was so much flooding in their yard, many crops were ruined. The property owners were dealing with damage to both their terrain and buildings.

Routine Maintenance Limits the Need for a Water Damage Cleanup Company

There is no way to avoid flooding completely.  Flooding will always happen, especially in rainy New England weather.  While floods cannot be fully prevented, they can be limited.  Limiting floods starts with proper maintenance.

The reason the owners of the farm in Hollis, NH experienced so much external flood damage is because their yard wasn’t routinely maintained.  The gutters on the structures hadn’t been checked and several areas of the farm had been built up with residue and debris.  Listed are several ways one can maintain their landscape and limit the need for a water damage cleanup company:

  • Improve drainage by creating runoff ponds or sediment traps
  • Remove sediment that accumulates over time
  • Loosen soil so water can soak in
  • Use low-ground pressure tires to avoid soil compaction
  • Routinely check and clean out gutters
  • Clear debris from channels, culverts, and trash screens
  • Invest in sandbags to prevent water from entering structures
  • Use plywood to board up windows
  • Use pallets to raise items above floodwater level
  • Add mulch and grow grass in bare areas

Drainage may seem like a tiresome task, and it is.  But proper drainage to one’s yard is critical for maintaining well managed landscapes.

Benefits for Properly Maintaining One’s Yard

Whether it’s a farm, a small garden, or your child’s playground, there are benefits for a yard that is cleaned and maintained.  Sure, the reduction of flooding will limit the need for a water damage cleanup company.  But that’s just the beginning.  Maintenance also goes a long way in making your yard, farms, and gardens more profitable and healthier.  Proper maintenance of one’s yard can yield these benefits:

  • Improved water infiltration, which replenishes groundwater
  • Increase in the amount of water held in soil
  • Reduced runoff and erosion
  • Save resources and money in the long run

On the contrary, if your yard isn’t properly maintained, erosion could occur, and runoff can carry away nutrients needed to make your gardens grow.

Find the Right Water Damage Cleanup Company

While flooding was certainly a concern, the farmers in Hollis, NH, were even more relieved to learn about ways that they could prevent water damage on their own.  It’s one thing to clean up water damage, but it’s another to prevent it numerous times to save your business.  Soil-Away Cleaning and Restoration Services, LLC does it all.  They were able to come and clean the flooded areas in the buildings. Ground water flooding that entered the farmhouse and barns were no match for Soil-Away.

Keep in mind, yard maintenance doesn’t just apply to farms.  Although it seems like farms may have the most costly consequences, anyone’s backyard, gardens, and even public parks can cause water damage to surrounding structures.  An efficient water damage cleanup company like Soil-Away won’t stop until your home or business is free of water damage and full-service repairs have been made.  Call Soil-Away today at (603) 641-6555.

By A. Phelps

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emergency water damage cleanup - portland maine

Emergency Water Damage Cleanup – Portland, ME

Written by jsolloway on . Posted in Blog, Case Study, Water Damage.

A laundromat in Portland, ME had a washing machine that overflowed, leaving a large puddle of water on the newly installed wood floors.  When one of the workers saw it had overflowed, they quickly turned the appliance off.  But damage had been done.  The floors were now flooded, and the owners of the laundromat realized that they needed an emergency water damage cleanup.

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kitchen fires - prevention

Top Causes of Kitchen Fires

Written by jsolloway on . Posted in Blog, Fire, Smoke, & Odor Damage, Tips and Advice.

While the days are cooling off with the pending arrival of fall, many people will pack up their summer picnic basket and exchange it for fall cuisines and cooking at home. There’s something about a delicious home-cooked meal that gets your mouth watering. While many people take cooking safety for granted; it should be clear that most home fires start in the kitchen. Before turning on that burner, it’s important to know the top causes of kitchen fires.

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