Recent Water Damage Posts

Blown-in Insulation Removal in Southbury Homes and Businesses

8/13/2019 (Permalink)

Blown in insulation can contain animal feces from bats, mice and other animals who are living in your attic.

Many homes in the Southbury area have blown-in insulation. It’s a popular choice as it provides full coverage, is easy to install and is very efficient method of insulating the home. On occasion, a homeowner will find themselves in a situation in which the blown-in insulation will need to be removed from their home.

There are a number of reasons why the removal of blown-in insulation might be necessary including:

Water Damage Events: 

When your home has a leak or flooding, the insulation will have water damage along with the rest of your home. Because wet insulation can promote mold growth, it can be a health hazard for those in the home. Wet insulation also loses its effectiveness because it has become compacted and no longer insulates your home as intended. 

Old Insulation:

Today’s standards of insulation are far greater than what a home would have been required to have 20 years ago. Older insulation is thinner and has a lower R-value. If this is the case in your home, having it removed and replaced will help in keeping your home better insulated. 

Animal Infestations:

Mice, bats, and birds  often make a nice home of your attic space. The feces from these animals spread contaminants and disease in your home.  Animal waste also causes the insulation to compact, creating a better environment for animals to build a nest, which will exacerbate the problem. 

The SERVPRO of Southbury/Torrington team is experienced in blown in insulation removal.

We use commercial vacuums to safely and effectively remove the old insulation as well as any debris. Once the insulation has been removed, our team is able to assess any further damage to the structure, such as wet subfloors or walls, that will also require treatment or replacement. Once all of the damaged materials have been removed,  the affected area is decontaminated and sanitized prior to the new insulation being blown in. 

If you need the insulation in your home removed, call our office at  (203) 267-6262 for an inspection today.

Leaking Roofs Causes Water and Mold Damage to Hartford County Homes

6/3/2019 (Permalink)

A leaking roof can cause not only damage the structural integrity of your Southbury home but can be a health and fire hazard as well.  Leaks can be caused by a variety of reasons such as a roof that was incorrectly installed or damage from a storm or high winds.  Here are some of the ways a roof leak can affect your home and family. 

Compromised structure 

A leaking roof can cause damaged rafters, ceiling joists and wall studs, as well as rotting to the interior and exterior trim.  The water causes the wood to warp, weaken and deteriorate. Repairs to the infrastructure of your home can be costly.  

Attic and ceiling damage 

The initial dangers of a roof leak are damage to the attic area and the items stored there. If there is no attic, or the size of the leak is really big, it will damage the interior ceiling. You will notice water spots and perhaps bubbling or peeling on the affected ceiling and walls  The dripping water can also damage ceiling fans and light fixtures. 

Fire hazard from water damage 

If electrical wiring is present in an attic or ceiling, a leaky roof could pose a fire threat from shorted wires. It is highly recommended to turn off electricity to the area that’s affected and have an electrician examine it. 

Interior mold 

One of the more serious issues that occur from a roof leak is mold growth. The consequences of letting the water settle without repairing the leak immediately can be harmful to your health. Mold damage can spread throughout the home’s structure, HVAC system and into personal belongings. Black mold is the most common type resulting from chronic water intrusion. SERVPRO of Southbury/Torrington can remediate mold found in your Harwinton home.  

High utility bills/wasted energy 

Water leaking through the roof causes damage to the insulation in the attic, which becomes saturated and takes a long time to dry out. If a roof leak repair is put off,  your home will lose hot and cool air, resulting in higher utility bills.

If you discover that a roof leak has caused water or mold damage in your home, call us at (203) 267-6262.

Washing Machines, Dishwashers and Refrigerators and the Water Damage they can Cause

4/11/2019 (Permalink)

Sometimes, water damage comes from an unlikely source such as an appliance in your home.

In the past month, the team at SERVPRO of Newtown and Southern Litchfield County has responded to water damage emergencies in homes that were caused by leaking washing machines, dishwashers and refrigerator lines. The appliances failed without warning, leaving the homeowners dealing with an unexpected mess.

The problem with appliance leaks is that they often happen when the homeowner is away from the house. How many of us turn on the dishwasher prior to leaving our homes for the day? We expect to return to clean dishes but rather, find our homes flooded. Similarly, many of us run the washing machine while we are sleeping or not at home.In the case of a washing machine, failures can happen due to a leaky door seal, a loose hose or a shot pump. 

It doesn’t take long for the water from an appliance leak to flood a house, leak through the floor and cause widespread damage. Appliance leaks cause damage to the wood flooring, carpets and the walls and ceiling of homes. The good news is that most insurance companies will cover water damage that is a result of a sudden malfunction of an appliance.

Nobody plans on an appliance leak in their home but they happen more often that you would imagine. We’ve seen this in the case of new and old appliances. Your immediate response when you discover an appliance leak at your home will be to stop the flow of water. Turning the water off at the main shut off valve (typically found in the basement of Newtown area homes) will stop any further flooding.

After the water has been shut off, call our office at (203) 743-5362. We are open 24-7 and the sooner the water damage restoration process begins, the easier the and quicker the work will be.

Older Homes in the Torrington Area are at Risk for Water Damage

4/9/2019 (Permalink)

Wood floors buckling and with dark stains are a sure sign of water damage

The Litchfield County area is known for its beautiful old houses in a picturesque setting. Hundreds of years old, these homes are reminders of how things used to be. We’ve seen homes in which the crawlspaces reveal rocks stacked on top of each other for the foundation. That these structures still stand is a testament to the craftsmanship of our ancestors.

As impressive as old houses are, however, it is inevitable that they might be plagued by structural problems. Foundations crack and shift, creating a risk of water damage.  Old electrical wires that often do not meet code can fray as well as overload the system, causing an electrical fire. The plumbing systems that were added long after these homes were built are often not installed to today’s standards. Septic systems deteriorate and break with age. There are a host of problems that cause water damage to older homes.

If you have an older home in Connecticut, be vigilant about the warning signs of water damage.

Water stains. Water stains are the most common and obvious indication that you have a leak.You may see them on the ceilings or walls. Have all water stains inspected to see what the source is.

Deteriorating wood. In particular, keep your eye on door and window frames as well as baseboards and molding which are the first areas to show water damage because of a leaking window or door.

Buckling floors. If there is an appliance leak that goes unnoticed, a pipe leak under a sink or a gap around your shower door, you may end up with floors that absorb the water. Wood flooring absorbs the water, which makes it swell and buckle. Vinyl will curl up at the edges, which gives you a clue that there is a problem.

Pay attention to suspicious smells. If you notice a moldy or mildew smell, find the source even if there is nothing visible. Water damage can cause mold to grow behind walls and can cause serious damage if not mitigated.

Do you have water damage in your older home? Call Us Today (203) 267-6262.

CAT 1. CAT 2. CAT 3. Know the Different Types of Water Damage.

3/12/2019 (Permalink)

The cause of your water damage determines that type of restoration clean up that it requires.

Our approach to treating water damage in Connecticut homes depends on which category it falls into.

CAT 1 or Clean Water

Clean water is just that- water that has come from a source that is not contaminated. Examples of this would be a pipe bursting or a refrigerator leak. Also, if you have a leak that allows rainwater in through your roof, it is considered clean. Although clean water can cause significant damage, it is not considered hazardous to human health as there are no microbes in the water.  The biggest hazard clean water presents is if the area that has been damaged is not properly cleaned and dried. This can result in mold and fungus growth. 

CAT 2 or Gray Water

Gray water is water that is slightly contaminated, either because of the nature of the source or because of neglect. For example, clean water can become “gray” water if it is left untreated for an extended period time. When a toilet or washing machine overflows, the resulting water would be considered gray because of its source. Toilet overflows containing urine only are considered gray.

CAT 3 or Black Water

CAT 3 water is highly dangerous to human health. Black water can include toxic materials such as bacterial diseases, chemicals, pesticides, microbes and more. Sewage based components such as bacteria, fungi, feces, viruses and parasites. Black 3 water situations are usually caused by sewage backups or overflows and flooding. 

Since the human eye cannot see bacteria, it is not always obvious whether the water in your home is a CAT 2 or CAT 3.  If you experience a flood from a heavy rain, the water may look “clean,” but if there is any ground water that has backed up into your home as a result, there may be invisible microbes lurking in the water. 

Any water damage that is not treated correctly will eventually elevate to the next category. Even a simple pipe burst can turn into a biohazard and mold issue if not treated.

If you have any water damage in your home, call Southbury/Torrington at (203) 743-5362 for service that you can count on. 

Scenes From Winter- Icicles can Cause Water Damage to Litchfield County Homes

2/14/2019 (Permalink)

Icicles hanging off your roof can look pretty but also cause ice dams, which lead to water damage inside your home.

It can be postcard perfect - long shimmering icicles hanging from a snow covered roof of a beautiful Connecticut home.

But the reality is, snow and ice on your roof can be an indication that you might have an ice dam. Ice dams can cause damage to your roofing shingles as well as water damage to the interior of your home when they cause leaking through the roof.  

Not all icicles indicate an ice dam. If icicles are simply hanging off of your gutters and don’t have a block of ice trapped behind them, they have most likely not compromised the integrity of your roof. However, icicles that are hanging directly from your roof may be preventing water from draining off of the roof. This causes the water to back up under the shingles and enter your home.  

In addition to inspecting your roof for ice, we recommend taking a look in your attic and the exterior walls of your house for water stains. This may be an indication that an ice dam has formed and water has penetrated the roof membrane.  Of course, a sure sign that you have a roof leak from an ice dam is water dripping through your ceiling! 

Ice dam prevention is straightforward.  

ROOF RAKE: A roof rake can be used to gently remove the snow on the edge of your roof, up to about 3-4 feet. Use caution not to damage your roofing shingles in doing so.  

CALCIUM CHLORIDE: Use a calcium chloride ice melt product to melt the ice on your roof before it causes a problem.  Be sure not to use rock salt or sodium chloride, which can damage your roof. Rather than just sprinkling the calcium chloride all over, we love this trick: Fill a nylon stocking with the calcium chloride and lay it across the ice dam. This creates a channel in the ice that deters roof damage.  

Never allow water damage from an ice dam to go untreated.  

If you don’t catch an ice dam prior to damage occurring, professional water damage mitigation is necessary. When water flows through insulation, sheetrock, and wood, it creates an environment where mold can grow hidden behind the walls.

For more information on the water damage restoration services offered by SERVPRO of Southbury/Torrington, please call us at (203) 267-6262.

Extreme Weather Causes Flooding in Torrington Area Homes and Businesses

1/28/2019 (Permalink)

Last week's weather brought freezing temperatures followed by warm weather and heavy rain, leading to frozen pipes and flooded basements.

It's winter and we live in Litchfield County, CT so we expect to have harsh weather and last week we certainly got just that!

The week started with negative temperatures on Monday. This caused pipes to freeze in many buildings. In particular, areas of the home that are poorly insulated such as sunrooms, additions, garages and rooms with exterior walls that are hit by the wind were susceptible. 

This cold front was followed by a dramatic rise in temperature (by almost 60 degrees!) and 3 inches of rain on Thursday. The warm weather allowed the ice in the frozen pipes to melt, and opened the way for hundreds of gallons of water to gush into Litchfield County homes. 

The heavy rainfall was more than the still frozen ground could absorb and led to flooding of basements throughout the area as well. 

When the weather causes the pipes to burst in your home and your basement to flood, give SERVPRO of Southbury/Torrington a call at (203) 267-6262. Our crew has the training, experience and resources to restore your home quickly and professionally. 

Water Damage Restoration After Flooding in Vacant Harwinton Area Homes

12/28/2018 (Permalink)

If your house is vacant because you vacation down South for the winter or are selling your home, be sure to take steps to protect it from water damage

Vacant homes are among the most vulnerable structures to flooding.

Connecticut homes are often left unattended when a homeowner goes on vacation or travels south for the winter. We also receive water damage calls when a home is vacant because it is listed for sale or when the homeowner is deceased and the home is vacant while the estate is being settled. 

During the winter, flooding often occurs due to burst pipes. This can occur for a number of reasons but in vacant homes the culprit is typically that the oil tank runs out.  We've seen this happen even when a home is scheduled to be automatically refilled by the oil company. Errors occur and while typically this would be caught by the homeowner, when the house is vacant it goes unnoticed. 

This results in a substantial amount of water flooding through the home with nobody there to notice it. We were once called by a homeowner who was away and notified of the water damage after their neighbors observed water pouring out from under the front door. Often when pipes burst in vacant homes, the damage is extreme- leaving collapsed ceilings and saturated walls. In addition to burst pipes, we've responded to homes in which water heaters have burst and appliances leaked.

Regardless of the source of the water, there are some precautions that homeowners can take to reduce their risk of damage.

If you are going on a vacation, leave a neighbor a key so that they can check on your home, especially if the temperature dips down into the single digits.

If you winter down South, consider having a family member or property management company care for your home so that missing oil deliveries or a broken oil burner doesn't go unnoticed. 

Homes that are vacant can also be winterized - in which the water is drained from the pipes. The house will go unheated but there is no longer a risk of water damage from frozen pipes, broken appliances or a water heater burst.

Also, be vigilant about oil deliveries and ask your provider to notify you when a delivery occurs. Rather than simply leaving you a slip, request a phone call or email and keep track of the deliveries. This simple step can give you the peace of mind that your home will be dry and as you left it when you return home after the long winter. 

Frozen Pipes Burst, Causing Water Damage in Litchfield County

12/14/2018 (Permalink)

Don't let this happen to you! A few precautions can reduce your risk of frozen pipes.

With the thermometer dipping into negative degrees this week, pipes in Litchfield County homes are at risk of freezing, especially because many homes are vacant while families travel for the holidays. 

Although pipes can freeze anywhere in your home, there are some areas that are more susceptible than others.

1. Your Crawlspace - Many older homes in CT have a crawlspace rather than a full basement. These are typically not insulated and the pipes are exposed to the environment. Lining the sides of the space with foam board and the ground with plastic can help. You may also consider installing a heat cable that runs along the pipes and is turned on when the temps drop. 

2. Under the Kitchen Sink - In particular, sinks that are on an exterior wall tend to experience frozen pipes. An easy solution to this is leaving your cabinet doors open to allow the warm air in the home to circulate.

3. Bonus Rooms Above the Garage - Most bonus rooms are built above an unheated garage. They are exposed to the cold air (especially along the exterior walls). Keeping the temperature in your garage above freezing with the use of space heaters on frigid days can help. 

Frozen pipes can happen to anyone. We have responded to water damage from burst pipes in houses built in the 1700's as well as homes that are new construction. We've seen it all and have the experience to restore your home quickly and thoroughly. 

Washing Machine Leaks Cause Water Damage to Torrington, CT Homes

12/11/2018 (Permalink)

Washing machine leaks can be caused by a variety of reasons, causing water damage to Torrington area homes.

A leaking washing machine can cause substantial water damage to your Watertown, CT home.  When a leak occurs, the water will flow out of your machine or it's hose until you discover the mess. The flooding can cause damage to wood floors, walls, furniture and even through the ceiling to the floors below.  There are preventative steps homeowners can take to reduce their risk of an appliance leak.  

  1. Make sure your hoses aren't kinked. There should be at least 4 inches between the wall and your washing machine.  
  2. Check your detergent. Too much of it or the wrong kind (in high efficiency machines) can clog the overflow tube and cause a leak. 
  3. Inspect to see that the drain hose is properly inserted into the drain line - it can become loose during machine use.  
  4. Check your supply line hoses to make sure they aren't brittle or cracked. We recommend using stainless steel braided hoses to avoid deterioration. 
  5. If your washing machine is in a high risk area (adjacent to living areas or on a second floor) consider installing a  washing machine leak detector with an alarm that alerts you if it detects water on the floor. It will also close the valves so that flooding doesn’t continue.  
  6. Turn off your washing machine water supply at the lever whenever you leave home for an extended period. 

If you have flooding from a washing machine leak in your home, give SERVPRO of Southbury/Torrington a call at (203) 267-6262. Our team has over twenty years of experience in water damage restoration in Connecticut.

Leaking Roofs Cause FIre, Water and Mold Damage in Torrington, CT

11/16/2018 (Permalink)

A leaking roof can cause not only damage the structural integrity of your Torrington home but can be a health and fire hazard as well.  

Leaks can be caused by a variety of reasons such as a roof that was incorrectly installed or damage from a storm or high winds.  

Here are some of the ways a roof leak can affect your home and family. 

Compromised structure 

A leaking roof can cause damaged rafters, ceiling joists and wall studs, as well as rotting to the interior and exterior trim.  The water causes the wood to warp, weaken and deteriorate. Repairs to the infrastructure of your home can be costly.  

Attic and ceiling damage 

The initial dangers of a roof leak are damage to the attic area and the items stored there. If there is no attic, or the size of the leak is really big, it will damage the interior ceiling. You will notice water spots and perhaps bubbling or peeling on the affected ceiling and walls  The dripping water can also damage ceiling fans and light fixtures. 

Fire hazard from water damage 

If electrical wiring is present in an attic or ceiling, a leaky roof could pose a fire threat from shorted wires. It is highly recommended to turn off electricity to the area that’s affected and have an electrician examine it. 

Interior mold 

One of the more serious issues that occur from a roof leak is mold growth. The consequences of letting the water settle without repairing the leak immediately can be harmful to your health. Mold damage can spread throughout the home’s structure, HVAC system and into personal belongings. Black mold is the most common type resulting from chronic water intrusion. SERVPRO of Southbury/Torrington can remediate mold found in your Woodbury home.  

High utility bills/wasted energy 

Water leaking through the roof causes damage to the insulation in the attic, which becomes saturated and takes a long time to dry out. If a roof leak repair is put off,  your home will lose hot and cool air, resulting in higher utility bills.

If you discover that a roof leak has caused water or mold damage in your Torrington, CT home, call SERVPRO of Southbury/Torrington at (203) 267-6262.

What to do if the Pipes Burst in Your Southbury Home or Business

11/8/2018 (Permalink)

When pipes freeze and then burst, knowing which steps to take can save your home from extreme damage.

The most common call we get in the winter here in the Southbury, CT area is from customers whose pipes have frozen and burst.  Often, a homeowner isn't aware that their pipes have frozen and they walk into their home after a thaw to a flood.  As devastating as this might experience can be, there are steps that can be taken to minimize the damage while you wait for help to arrive. 

Turn off your water and electricity. 

If you live in a house, turn off your water supply (and don't wait until a pipe bursts to locate it!) as well as the electricity  to the area of the house where the burst has occurred. If you live in an apartment building or condo, be sure to alert your building manager immediately as the water could also affect neighboring units. 

Place a catch bucket under the leak 

If water is coming through the ceiling, place a bucket or garbage can under the leak to catch the water. If the ceiling is bulging or the leaking is widespread, piercing a hole in the sheetrock will allow the water to flow through one spot.  

Drain your pipes 

Run all of the faucets throughout your house with cold water to clear as much water from the pipes as possible. Flush the toilets as well. Turn off your hot water heater and run the hot water from all faucets.  

Call a plumber 

Again, preparing ahead will work in your benefit. It can be difficult to find a plumber who is   immediately available to respond to your frozen pipe emergency.  Choosing and establishing a relationship with a local Litchfield County plumber ahead of time will go a long way in getting quicker service. 

Call SERVPRO of Southbury/Torrington

Our water mitigation team will respond quickly and begin the clean up process. The sooner we are called to dry the home out and remove wet sheetrock, carpets, flooring  and other materials, the less the damage can spread and cause additional problems. 

Call your Insurance Agency 

The sooner you submit a claim, the quicker you will be reimbursed for payments made to plumbers and contractors.  Our experienced office staff, Theny, Alexis and Kathy, will handle insurance negotiations and paperwork from our end so that you don't have to.  

Discovering that your home is flooded because of frozen pipes can be a stressful experience. We've been told by many customers throughout our twenty years as a franchise that having our team come out quickly and efficiently mitigate the damage has taken much of the stress out of the situation.  Give us a call  at (203) 267-6262 24/7 if your pipes freeze  this  winter in the Torrington area.

Water Damage Restoration of Flooded Basements in Southbury, CT

8/14/2018 (Permalink)

Basement floods can be caused by heavy rains, sewer backups, a broken pipe or a hot water heater tank failure.

The area in a home or business that is most at risk of being flooded is the basement. A basement can flood at any time, although flooding most often occurs during heavy rainfall. Basements are inherently prone to flooding because they are the lowest level of a building and are normally built partly or entirely below ground level. There are a number of reasons why your Torrington, CT basement could flood, including: 

  • A blocked or failed sewer lateral pipe
  • Heavy rain causes surface water to pool around your home
  • Storm sewer backup
  • Sanitary sewer backup
  • Foundation drainage failure
  • Water supply-line break or hot-water tank failure

There are some precautions that can be taken to reduce the likelihood of your basement flooding. Many Connecticut residents have a sump pump installed in their home to keep their basement dry. Grading the land around your foundation away from your home or building a drainage ditch are also effective measures. If you don't have a flood but your basement has high humidity that might lead to a mold problem, running a dehumidifier in your basement will help. 

Have Questions about Basement Flooding?

Call Today - (203)267-6262.

If flood water is not handled quickly and properly, it can jeopardize your health and safety, and cause severe damage to your home’s structure. Remember, the longer you wait, the worse the problem will get.

The bottom line: a flooded basement can jeopardize your health, safety, and your home’s integrity. It’s worth making a call to SERVPRO of Southbury/Torrington and let our trained, professional crews handle the situation safely and correctly. We have earned the trust of hundreds of homeowners, business owners, and property professionals.

We are Flooded Basement Specialists:

  • We are Available 24 hours/7 days per week
  • We’re a Preferred Vendor to many National Insurance Companies
  • We Bill The Insurance Directly – One Less Thing For You To Worry About
  • Our Technicians are Highly-Trained  in Water Restoration Techniques
  • We use s500 IICRC Restoration Standards
  • Advanced Inspection and Extraction Equipment

Basement Flooded?

Call Us Today (203)267-6262 – We’re Ready To Help 

The Water Damage Restoration Process When You Call SERVPRO of Southbury/Torrington

5/23/2018 (Permalink)

When you call us after having experienced water damage to your Torrington home, one of our administrative assistants will answer your call.

Quick action is crucial when you are dealing with water damage. The severity of the damage to your home can increase within just a few hours. This is the case no matter what has caused your water damage- whether it be from a broken refrigerator supply line, a leaking roof or a water heater burst.  

When they pick up your call, Theny and Alexis, our Torrington office staff, understand that you may be feeling overwhelmed, stressed, and a bit vulnerable. Our staff has experience of taking hundreds of calls like yours each year and can calmly guide you through the process. 

Upon answering your call, we will gather the necessary information in order to determine what equipment and resources will be needed as well as the size of the crew to send. 

Some of the questions we might ask are:

    • Your name and phone number as well as email address
    • If you are a renter or property manager, the homeowner's contact information
    • Your home insurance policy information 
    • The street address of the water-damaged home or business as well as the billing address
    • When the water damage occurred and what caused it
    • Whether there is electricity and heat available in the home

The following step will be for the office to schedule an appointment for one of our estimators to come to your home along with a crew to inspect the damages and formulate a restoration plan. The information that they have gotten from your call will help them determine how many technicians to send and what type of equipment is needed. Once we have inspected the damage, our crew will begin work.

We know that most of our clients have not experienced water damage before and may be unfamiliar with the terminology used and why certain actions need to be taken. Please know that if at any point you feel this way, our production managers and office staff are available to answer your questions.

The team at SERVPRO of Southbury/Torrington are your Connecticut water restoration specialists. If you have a flood or leak, call us at (203) 267-6262.

Restoring Household Contents After Water Damage in Your Watertown, CT Home

5/6/2018 (Permalink)

If your Southbury, CT home has extensive water damage, we may pack the contents of your home and store them safely at our facility during restoration.

When a home has water damage from a flooded basement or a pipe burst, the contents of the home can be damaged as well as the structure.

The task of sorting through a families belongings to determine what should be restored and what should be replaced can be an emotional one. The SERVPRO of Southbury/Torrington crew understands how difficult this can be and is available to help our customers in this process. 

When restoring a home after water damage, we typically order a dumpster to the home in which we place damaged materials such as wet sheetrock, insulation, wood floors and carpeting that cannot be saved. As we go through the contents, there will be some pieces of furniture that clearly cannot be saved. Typically, this would be porous items such as mattresses and furniture which is made out of particle board.

If we are uncertain whether we can save a particular item, we are able to pretest them to determine whether they can be brought back to their original condition.  We utilize several methods of cleaning your contents, including the following: 

  • Dry Cleaning - Used for cleaning light residues or to pre-clean prior to wet cleaning. 
  • Wet Cleaning - An effective cleaning method for removing moderate to heavy residues. 
  • Spray and Wipe -Effective for items that can’t withstand wet cleaning. 
  • Foam Cleaning - Used for upholstery fabrics that might shrink or bleed if wet cleaned. 
  • Abrasive Cleaning - Involves agitation of the surface being cleaned.  
  • Immersion Cleaning - Contents are dipped into a bath of the cleaning product.  

Our franchise offers a Contents Claim Inventory Service to our customers, which provides them a list of their belongings and their values.  This helps our customers provide the needed documentation to their homeowner's insurance company to be reimbursed for damages. 

As we walk through a home, a customer may identify certain items of sentimental value. We will make our best effort to restore these treasured items such as a favorite stuffed animal, a photo album or an important document. We have five options for the restoration of documents, which is dependent on the level of damage to the documents. 

  • Air Drying 
  • Dehumidification 
  • Freezer Drying 
  • Vacuum Freeze Drying 
  • Vacuum Thermal Drying 

Homes that have extensive damage may require the furnishings be removed during restoration. SERVPRO of Southbury/Torrington offers full content moving service. This includes the packing up of your belongings, transportation to our storage facility and the return of your items when restoration is complete. Not only does our pack out services help us restore your home quicker and with more ease, it also protects your belongings from further damage from moisture in the air, which can cause mold spores to grow.

The SERVPRO of Southbury/Torrington team understands that it can be difficult to part with sentimental belongings and we are diligent in our effort to restore them if possible. From our initial walk through, to the return of your belongings when the restoration is complete, our goal is to be respectful and helpful to families who are going through a difficult ordeal.  

Tips to Keep the Spring Thaw From Flooding Your Harwinton Home

4/10/2018 (Permalink)

Clogged gutters will flow over the side, causing water to collect at your houses foundation. This can lead to flooding in your basement.

Although we've still seen some snowflakes coming down in the past week, I think (hope) it's safe to say that winter is finally coming to an end. With warmer temperatures coming this week, the ground is thawing out and with that, excess water will be created. Unless you have a water proof house, this could cause flood problems, particularly in your basement. We've compiled a few flood prevention tips that will help protect your home this spring. If you already have water damage at your home, contact SERVPRO of Southbury/Torrington at (203) 267-6262 for immediate water damage restoration help. 

  • Inspect the drainage system: The drainage system on your property must be free of obstructions so the melted snow and ice will drain away from your home. Open your roof drains and make sure the floor drains of free of debris.  If you have flood drains outside your home, make sure they are clear as well. 
  • Inspect your gutters and downspouts: It's important to make sure that your downspouts and gutters are clear so that any ice and snow that is melting off of your roof has an exit point. With the winter we had, which brought high winds and snowstorms, there can be a plethora of leaves, twigs and branches blocking  your gutters. This can cause water damage by allowing water to enter your home through the roof. Also, if the water cannot drain properly, it will flow over the side of your gutter instead. This causes water buildup near the foundation of your home., which can lead to flooding in your basement. 
  • Test your sump pump: Many houses in Connecticut have sump pumps to assist in keeping the basement dry.  Sump pumps are a fantastic idea but only if they are working! Our Torrington office receives several calls a year from homes in which there is water damage from sump pump failure. There are some simple steps that you can take to make sure that your sump pump is in proper working order. We recommend doing so in early spring. 

It's been a long winter and we are finally coming out of it. Don't let your enjoyment of spring be hindered by a flooded basement or leaky roof. Following our tips takes just a few hours and will help prevent any melting snow and ice from entering your home. If you have water damage from flooding this spring, call the SERVPRO of Southbury/Torrington team for professional water damage restoration with experience and training you can count on.   

Tips To Help Prevent Pipes From Freezing:

1/4/2018 (Permalink)

Winter is in full effect!  In an effort to help keep your pipes from freezing, consider the following tips:

Outdoor Care:

Disconnect all garden hoses and if there is water shut off valve, turn it off!   Also, consider installing covers on exterior water supplies.

Prevent the water meter from freezing during cold weather by keeping it securely covered.

Indoor Care:

Identify the location of the main and water heater shut-off(s).  Knowing the location of these valves can come in handy during an emergency and could help prevent further damages.

Be sure that your home’s thermostat is NOT below 60 degrees.

Leave cabinet doors below sinks open to allow heat from home to circulate.

Close all windows and seal any gaps open to the outside elements, especially those near water pipes. Freezing temperatures combined with wind drafts can cause pipes to freeze.

Insulate pipes that are near exterior walls or in unheated spaces of your home. This can prevent freezing, especially for interior pipes that may run along outside walls.

Seal leaks that allow cold air into your home by weather strip, caulking or insulating.  Check air leaks around flue or chimney chase, electrical wiring, dryer vents and pipes. Also, consider insulating outside walls that are in unheated spaces of a home.

If away, shut off water supply valves to your washing machine.

Leave lukewarm water dripping slowly from faucets during extremely cold periods.  Water moving through the system should prevent lines from freezing.

If a Pipe Bursts:

Shut off water at the main valve.

If the break is in a hot water pipe, the valve on top of water heater should also be turned off.

Call a plumber immediately! Then call SERVPRO of Southbury/Torrington to make it, “Like it never even happened.” 

With Colder Temperatures, Are Your Pipes at Risk?

1/4/2018 (Permalink)

As temperatures continue to drop, pipes are at risk of freezing, especially while families are traveling for the holidays.

Although pipes can freeze anywhere in your home, there are some areas that are more susceptible than others:

  1. Crawlspace- Many older homes in CT have a crawlspace rather than a full basement. They are typically not insulated and the pipes are exposed to the environment. Lining the sides of the space with foam board and the ground with plastic can help. You may also consider installing a heat cable that runs along the pipes and is turned on when the temperature drops. 
  2. Under the Kitchen SinkIn particular, sinks that are on an exterior wall tend to experience frozen pipes. An easy solution to this is leaving your cabinet doors open to allow the warm air in the home to circulate.
  3. Bonus Rooms Above the Garage- Most bonus rooms are built above an unheated garage. They are exposed to the cold air (especially along the exterior walls). Keeping the temperature in your garage above freezing with the use of forced air heater unit for those frigid days can help. 

When the unexpected happens, we can help restore your home quickly and thoroughly, call us at 203-267-6262. 

Clean Your Gutters!

11/29/2017 (Permalink)

To help minimize potential exterior/interior, water issues be sure to clean your gutters and drains to ensure that water is properly draining from your home or building. 

Our office is commonly flooded with phone calls during the fall due to backed up gutters and drains that enter a home or business and cause water damage. The backing up of gutters is very common due to the simple fact that leaves, acorns, and other debris build up in the gutters and rain water has no where to go but into your home.

This same type of debris indicated above can cover up drains along foundations and patios which will lead to water damage to basements and lower levels of your home. Not only can water damage occur to your interior living space, but the even more costly damage can take place such as foundation damage, peeling paint, rot to sill plates, and other costly items.

Simply put an ounce of prevention will lead to pounds of protection by just maintaining the water drainage system designed to protect your house or building.

If water damage does occur to your home it is imperative to address it immediately. We are available to help 24/7 at SERVPROsouthburytorrington.com

Signs That Your Hot Water Tank Could Be Failing You

11/29/2017 (Permalink)

Signs That Your Hot Water Tank Could Be Failing You!

The average hot water heater lasts approximately 10 years before it needs to be replaced. Internal parts of the heater can corrode or over time and develop mineral buildup.  Mineral buildup can compromise the efficiency of the heater.  Regular flushing and professional annual maintenance can help prolong the life span of the unit. To avoid any disruption or damage of a failing water heater.  Below are indicators that your water heater may be in need of repair and/or replacement.

Common signs to look for:

  • Insufficient water
  • Noisy water heater
  • Cloudy or hot water that may have an odor
  • Metallic water taste
  • Rust or leaks around connections
  • Leaking tank

If you are experiencing any of the above signs, have it serviced immediately by a plumber immediately! For more information we invite you to visit our site at www.SERVPROsouthburytorrington.com.

High Humidity Effects

11/2/2017 (Permalink)

During a water damage to your home or business while some of your contents might not have been directly affected by the water, however the moisture in the air could have devastating and long lasting effects.


Clothing items, soft fabrics, and upholstered items exposed to high humidity are more likely to be ruined by mold and secondary damages. Besides microbial growth that can occur, high humidity from water damage can deflect, bend, or reshape these soft good items. High humidity will not distinguish between designer suits or an old pair of sweatpants, so realizing the problem and resolving it quickly is the best prevention to protect your content items.


Furniture covered with fabric has a lot of area for potential mold growth. When mold forms on upholstered furniture exposed to high humidity, repair can be very difficult or impossible. And who wants a smelly sofa?


While all of the conditions described above sound upsetting, they’re easily avoided. With Proper Water Mitigation and Drying. Here are SERVPRO of Southbury/Torrington we are trained in how to respond when this type of damage occurs. Please check out our website for additional info about water damage and high humidity secondary damages. http://www.SERVPROsouthburytorrington.com/

Ground Water Flooding Due to Recent Storms

11/2/2017 (Permalink)

an example of ground water coming up through the floor.

The fast moving rain and thunder storms that are running across CT on 10/24/17 from west to east are causing flash flooding to many homes and businesses in a widespread fashion. It is crucial for homeowners and business owners to deal with ground water entering their properties in an immediate fashion.

Groundwater can carry unknown contaminants that can travel with the rain water that passes through the soil and pickup potential pesticides and other unknown contaminants and deposit them in your affected areas. For example, Beryllium, naturally occurs in soil and groundwater. To learn more about the effects of Beryllium from water damage, please follow this link for more information https://water.usgs.gov/edu/groundwater-contaminants.html

If you happen to experience water damage to your home or business, we are available to assist in the proper removal and water restoration 24/7 and 365 days a year to your property. For additional tips and info and contact information please click on our website at http://www.SERVPROsouthburytorrington.com/

SERVPRO of Southbury/Torrington is an IICRC certified firm that specializes in water damage restoration.