Recent Posts

How to Discover a Water Leak in Your Bathroom

9/20/2022 (Permalink)

Indoor plumbing is one luxury of modern life, but a bathtub leak can quickly turn it into a stressful, expensive problem. If you want to prevent a water disaster from damaging your home, there are signs you can look for. Here are a few ways to find potential water leaks in your tub or shower.

Look for Signs
If you suspect you have a shower pan leak, there are several telltale signs you can search for. Here are some signs to look for when inspecting your home for leaks:

  • Damp carpet
  • Rusted floor nails
  • Stains on the shower stall
  • Water in the ceiling or light fixtures below
  • Wet drywall

Some signs may not be immediately apparent, but you can do simple things to uncover them, such as pulling back a corner of the carpet to look for rusty floor nails. Another easy task is to inspect the drywall and floor surrounding the shower (or the ceiling on the floor below if you have a multi-story home). Some leaks may not be apparent while the water is off, so running the water while you search may make the leak easier to find.

Perform a Test
If you’re building a home in Saline County or remodeling an existing bathroom, a bathtub leak test may be appropriate. This a test often performed by professionals during home construction, so ask your contractor about it. To do the test, he or she will stop the drain, fill the tub to capacity and let it stand for at least 48 hours. It’s a simple way to discover potential leaks before other water damage-prone materials are installed.

Unfortunately, sometimes a bathtub leak isn’t discovered until the damage is already done, but a water damage repair specialist can help get your home back to normal. With these tips, you'll know what look for before the next water trickle becomes a flood.

Post-Construction Cleaning in Benton, AR

8/31/2022 (Permalink)

Whether you’re taking on a lengthy renovation project or building a whole new commercial structure, it can leave a huge job to clean up.  The cleanup process can last several weeks, but we can help get your business back up and running in no time!  SERVPRO offers a huge range of cleaning services which includes post-construction cleanup.  Our highly trained team knows how to clean every bit of your newly built/ renovated space, whether it be a kitchen, large office building, or warehouse space. As a part of a national franchise system with over 40 years in the cleaning industry, SERVPRO of Saline County and SERVPRO of Hot Springs will deliver on our promise of exceptional results. 

Call us today at 501-776-2222 for more information!

We're always here to help.

The Stages and Categories of Hurricanes

8/22/2022 (Permalink)

During Hurricane Season, you tend to hear TV meteorologists talking about different terms and categories to classify the storm.  What do they actually mean?

Where do hurricanes actually begin?  As a storm builds from a thunderstorm to a hurricane, it passes through 4 distinct stages:

Tropical Disturbance: a mass of thunderstorms that have wind speeds of less than 23 mph.

Tropical Depression: consistent wind speeds of 23-39 mph and a circulation of wind in the center of the thunderstorm mass is detected.

Tropical Storm: forms when the maximum sustained winds have intensified to 39-73 mph. Storms are typically given a name at this stage and are characterized by problems caused from very heavy rainfall.

Hurricane: finally forms when surface pressures continue to drop, and winds reach 74 mph. There is now a clear and definite rotation around a calm center, or eye. 

Hurricanes have their own categories which are defined by the Saffir Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale

Category 1: Winds 74 to 95 mph (Minor damage)

Category 2: Winds 96 to 110 mph (Extensive damage — Can uproot trees and break windows)

Category 3: Winds 111 to 129 mph (Devastating — Can break windows and doors)

Category 4: Winds 130 to 156 mph (Catastrophic damage — Can tear off roofs)

Category 5: Winds 157 mph or higher (Can level houses and destroy buildings)

This scale only estimates property damage that could occur with the maximum sustained wind speed of a particular hurricane; it does not take into account the potential for other dangerous events that often accompany hurricanes, like tornadoes, flooding, and storm surge. 

Calm Waters

8/9/2022 (Permalink)

Before the 2022 Hurricane Season started, the NOAA predicted an above-average season to rival the extremely active 2021 season.  The Gulf Coast and other areas braced themselves for an influx of tropical weather, and then...

Nothing happened.  There have only been 3 named storms since the beginning of the season in June.

Many areas in the Gulf were affected by drought conditions through the spring and summer months, and the Hurricane Outlook was officially downgraded at the beginning of August.  

So, is everything all clear?  Not exactly.

Approaching mid-August, there are some disturbances and tropical waves showing up on the radar.  These could eventually turn into named storms that affect the Gulf Coast and surrounding areas.  We're heading into the peak of Hurricane Season, and anything could happen.

If it does?

We'll be there.  SERVPRO of Saline County and Hot Springs have assisted our national Storm Teams in areas affected by strong hurricanes.  We're ready to do it again.

We're always here to help.

Water Loss Categories: Category 3

7/11/2022 (Permalink)

Water loss isn't the type of property damage that you can put off until later.  An invisible stopwatch starts running from the moment the damage occurs, and the longer it lasts, the worse the damage can be.  We've previously discussed Category 1 water, which comes from a sanitary source.  We've also discussed "greywater," or Category 2 water, which happens when Category 1 water sits for more than a couple of days.  It can also come from an overflowed washing machine, dishwasher, or toilet that does not contain feces.  Category 2 water is very susceptible to bacterial invasion, and this is when your water loss turns serious.  Should a Category 2 water loss sit for 48 hours, it is now classified as Category 3, commonly called "black water."

Aside from Category 2 water sitting for 48 hours, Category 3 water has many sources.  A sewage backup is automatically classified as a Category 3 loss.  Large rain events can cause flash flooding, which is also Category 3.  Major storm damage, such as flooding from a hurricane is black water, too. 

Take care to never ingest Category 3 water, either intentionally or accidentally.  This water is extremely contaminated, and you could be exposed to serious diseases such as Hepatitis B and C, Tetanus, or even HIV. 

Once your home suffers a Category 3 water loss, it is imperative to have it remedied immediately.  Should that water sit in your home, it could soak not only the contents of your home, but also sheetrock, flooring, and anywhere else it can get.  This poses a huge health risk to the occupants of the home.

SERVPRO of Saline County and SERVPRO of Hot Springs understand the severity involved with Category 3 water, and our specially trained technicians are ready to make it "Like it never even happened."  Call us today at 501-776-2222 to discuss your needs.  We're available 24/7.

We're always here to help.

Before You Visit a Saline County Firework Stand

6/20/2022 (Permalink)

Colorful fireworks explode in a dark sky Celebrate responsibly on the Fourth of July!

Tis the season for those little roadside tents to pop up along the landscape. You know the ones. You'll see more and more fireworks stands as the calendar edges closer to the Fourth of July. This is the year you're going BIG.

Well, maybe not so fast.

There are some key safety measures to keep in mind before you light that first fuse! The goal is to have fun, and if safety isn't a priority, your celebration could end with something burning other than the fuse or worse, a surprise trip to the emergency room.

First, familiarize yourself with the state laws pertaining to fireworks in your area, wherever you may celebrate. Arkansas only permits certain types of firework purchases during specific times of the year, and only to those 12 years old and older.

Secondly, keep yourself safe! Make sure to never lean over the fuse when lighting it and keep a garden hose or water bucket nearby as a safety precaution. It's extremely tempting to try and re-light a "dud" firework, but don't do it! It could explode and burn you. Did you know that 44% of firework injuries were due to burns? That's an important percentage to remember, especially when it comes to children. Many people see sparklers as harmless, but a lit sparkler burns at around 2000 degrees. Half of the total firework injuries to young children involved sparklers. Please choose a safer alternative like a glow stick or streamer for your child.

When it comes to fireworks, don't forget about your furry friends. Dogs are extremely sensitive to loud noises and flashing lights. Walk them earlier in the day and leave them indoors when fireworks are in use. Close the curtains and make them a comfortable spot with music or a television playing to distract from the loud noises outside.

With a little consideration and the proper safety precautions, fireworks can be a lot of fun. No matter how you celebrate, do it safely! Have a Happy Independence Day from your friends at SERVPRO of Saline County and SERVPRO of Hot Springs!

The 2022 Atlantic Hurricane Season

6/14/2022 (Permalink)

A palm tree bends in the wind as choppy waves roll onto a beach NOAA predicts 3 to 6 major hurricanes for the 2022 season.

We've made it to the 2022 Hurricane Season, and from what the NOAA predicts, it may be a doozy.  Due to the ongoing La Niña weather pattern, the Atlantic hurricane forecast is much higher than average for the seventh year in a row.

What is La Niña? 

Essentially, it's a weather pattern in the Pacific Ocean featuring cooler ocean temperatures.  As these conditions travel, it generally results in colder winters and heavier snow.  This gives way to above average temperatures in the Southeastern US as the seasons change.  It also brings a greater likelihood for tornadoes and hurricanes.

We just made it through a particularly intense spring tornado season, featuring monthly tornadic totals well above what they were in 2021.  As the tornado season slows, attention turns to the Caribbean and the Gulf of Mexico.  La Niña years tend to affect the Atlantic hurricane cycles.

The Gulf Coast was affected by several Category 3 (or higher) hurricanes over the past few years.  It can be unsettling, wondering what lies ahead for friends and family who live in the area. 

We keep a close eye on the weather, too.  SERVPRO is ready to roll when the Gulf Coast experiences a strike from a hurricane.  Our Storm Teams immediately dispatches to the area to get the water out and mitigate the damage.

We're always here to help.

Let's Talk About Smoke Alarms

5/27/2022 (Permalink)

A smoke alarm is attached to a ceiling Smoke alarms can be a lifesaver.

You probably know how important it is to have at least one smoke alarm in your Benton, AR home.

Yet you may have many questions about purchasing and maintaining your detectors. Below are answers to some common queries.

What Types of Smoke Detectors Should You Buy?
There are three main types of smoke detectors. They are:

  1. Photoelectric
  2. Ionization
  3. Dual sensor

Photoelectric and ionization alarms each sense different types of fires. Dual-sensor detectors, meanwhile, include both ionization and photoelectric sensors. Ideally, you should place either one dual-sensor alarm or both photoelectric and ionization alarms near every bedroom in your home.
Make sure that the detectors are connected. This way, they will all go off at the same time. There are also special alarms available for those who are hearing impaired.

How Much Do Smoke Alarms Cost?
A smoke alarm is a cheap way to keep your family safe. Photoelectric and ionization detectors cost as little as six dollars. Dual-sensor alarms, meanwhile, are just $24. Your local fire department may even provide free or low-cost detectors for your home.

How Do You Maintain Smoke Detectors?
You need to regularly check each smoke detector in your home to see if it is functioning properly. Ideally, you should test the alarms each month.
Alarms that are hardwired into your home or that rely on a nine-volt battery should be replaced every 10 years. You should also change the batteries at least once a year.
Some smoke detectors now come with a 10-year lithium battery. Check the manufacturer's instructions to see how often you should replace these alarms.

Of course, a smoke alarm does not always prevent home fires. It simply tells you when a blaze is occurring so you can escape your house safely. Therefore, even if you install numerous detectors, your property could still sustain fire damage. That is why local emergency restoration specialists are available to assist with the cleanup.

Commercial Kitchen Cleaning in Benton, AR

5/10/2022 (Permalink)

Clean, emptied deep fryer baskets in a commercial kitchen They may be clean, but are they CLEAN?

Restaurants are big business in Saline County, AR. From mom-and-pop diners to national chains, restaurants dot the landscape. You know the food is good, but what's it like in the kitchen? How strictly does each restaurant follow its cleaning protocols? The answer could surprise you.

Restaurants should be cleaned and disinfected on a regular schedule. A commercial kitchen could become a fire hazard if grease is not removed from the kitchen. Exhaust fans help move the airborne grease from the kitchen, and if the fans are not cleaned regularly, it poses a serious fire hazard. A clean and sanitized kitchen also reduces the spread of disease among kitchen staff, leading to fewer sick days and callouts.

The Arkansas State Board of Health publishes a 145-page book of rules and regulations regarding food establishments in Arkansas. Lengthy chapters are devoted to the frequency of cleaning supplies and equipment used in Arkansas restaurants. In a perfect world, all rules and regulations would be followed exactly to the letter, but realistically, it doesn't always happen. Restaurants get busy and the workers mean to “get to it later,” and some of the deep cleaning simply does not happen. Should the restaurant have a surprise inspection from the state, the restaurant could be fined or even shut down until the problems are corrected. Don't let that happen to your restaurant!

SERVPRO of Saline County and SERVPRO of Hot Springs are ready to deep clean and sanitize your commercial kitchen to promote a safer, healthier work environment. Give us a call today at 501-776-2222. We'll make the mess “Like it never even happened.”

We're always here to help.

Is There a Hoarder in Your Family?

5/6/2022 (Permalink)

A kitchen floor is covered in trash and old food. A hoarder's home can be overwhelming. Let us make it "Like it never even happened."

Hoarding Disorder became an official psychiatric diagnosis in 2013, with the release of the DSM-5. It's more than just having a lot of possessions. Hoarding Disorder is in the same class of conditions as Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder. In the case of hoarding, the person cannot stop themselves from accumulating more and more things, even though many times, they know that they do not have the room to store any more items in their home.

Hoarders have a hard time letting go. So things accumulate. Eventually, it gets out of control until someone else sees the problem and forces them to get help. It's a difficult, emotional process, and once the accumulation gets to a certain point, it's best to call in the professionals.

SERVPRO of Saline County and SERVPRO of Hot Springs know that helping a family member with Hoarding Disorder isn't easy. We are experienced in home cleanout and sanitization situations. We can return your loved one's property to functional condition and get rid of the mess. Give us a call at 501-776-2222 if you're faced with a family member whose property has fallen into disrepair due to hoarding. We'll make it "Like it never even happened."

We're always here to help.