The Dangers of Water Damage

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Every minute counts when your business or home has a water damage loss. Within minutes of flooding, water spreads throughout your property and is absorbed into the walls, floors, and upholstery. Wood furniture and paper will begin to warp and may be permanently damaged or even ruined.

The water heater bursts in the middle of the night.  A washer hose leaks while you are on vacation.  Grease catches fire on the stove, and before you can extinguish the flames the whole house is covered with soot.  If you have never had something like this happen to you, how do you know what to do or who to call?

The best thing you can do in a disaster situation is to prevent further damage to your home.  Immediately call an expert with the training and experience to remedy the problem as soon as possible.  Some people think that a few wet rooms of carpet are no big deal: "Just get some towels and dry up the water, and everything will be fine."  Unfortunately, this approach often leads to a house that is unlivable because of mold infestation or structural problems.  And after even a small fire, acid residues can continue to damage some surfaces that could have been saved.  You need quick, expert response.

We respond quickly, day or night, to calls for water damage-normally arriving within two to four hours after the call to begin drying.  Smoke damage requires service within 24 to 48 hours to be effective, so we schedule the cleaning as quickly as possible.  Insurance companies rely on our rapid-response teams for their customers because they know that we can minimize losses by beginning work immediately.  In fact, most major insurance companies call on ServiceMaster first for Disaster Restoration.

It is as important to perform the correct remediation procedures as it is to perform them quickly.  We at ServiceMaster are recognized experts in water and smoke damage restoration.  We are certified by the State of Georgia to teach classes to insurance professionals to help them in dealing with their customers' losses.

Know who to call when you need help.  We are available 24/7 to take care of water problems.  We hope you don't have an emergency water or fire problem, but if you do we are ready to help. 


Proper way to Clean Carpet


Should My Carpet Cleaning Company Use Shampoo on My Carpet?

From time to time new carpet cleaning companies advertise things like, 

"We do not leave a shampoo residue in your carpet!" or 

"We use only mythical water on your carpet, so no residue!" or similar claims.  These gimmicks use a half-truth to try to get your business. They are correct that detergent residues in a carpet can cause dirt to bind to carpet fibers and resist removal by vacuuming.  However, the other half of the truth is important.

What Does Detergent Do?

The goal of a professional carpet cleaner is to remove as much of the unwanted stuff (dirt, oil, etc.) as possible without leaving a residue which can make future dirt attach to the carpet. The purpose of detergent in carpet cleaning is to help separate dirt particles from the carpet fibers which is better than what plain water will do.  In fact, several factors in combination--detergent, hot water and agitation--can produce a much cleaner carpet than water extraction alone.  

If the cleaning process is not done properly, some shampoo may be left in the carpet.  That's why some people think that they should delay the first cleaning of a new carpet.  They are convinced that the cleaning removes something from the fibers which cause the carpet to re-soil more quickly.  The truth is that shampoo residue left after cleaning attaches to dirt and makes the carpet harder to keep clean.  Rented carpet cleaning machines are notorious for leaving some shampoo in carpets.  An unskilled cleaning technician, however, may do the same.

The Best Way to Clean a Carpet

At ServiceMaster we have many different systems for cleaning carpet.  We tailor the cleaning method to the individual situation.  Our goal is to give the best possible cleaning, depending on the type of carpet and the degree and type of soiling.  Most of the systems use cleaning agents, but we know the importance of NOT leaving a residue in the carpet.  We want your carpet to look its best when we are through and to stay that way for as long as possible.

If you have any questions, feel free to call us.  We want to be your partner in caring for your home or business.

Smoke and Soot Damage

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The fire wasn't serious, maybe just a little cosmetic damage to the stove and cabinets in the kitchen. But the whole house has a layer of soot in it. Clothes in the closet have little black specks on them, even though the closet doors were closed at the time of the fire. The whole house has an unpleasant burned odor. You don't want to live in a house like this. What can you do to begin cleaning? Or should you just wait until the insurance adjuster can come out and look at everything, which could be a week from now? Many people have found themselves in this situation, not knowing what to do. Sometimes the person they talked with at the insurance company has been of little help. What would you do?


Knowing what not to do is as important as knowing what to do. Attempting to clean some surfaces the wrong way can damage them further so its usually best to leave the cleaning to professionals. Delaying cleaning sometimes causes additional harm as well, so it's best to call in the professionals immediately.


Emergency Pre-cleaning

Many people are not aware that soot on surfaces can cause damage to the surface just by being there. Depending on what burned, soot residue can contain various acids which can eat into metals, glass, and other materials. If there is excess humidity in the house, such as might have come from fire-fighting efforts, then the process can be accelerated. That is why it is imperative to call in an expert who knows what needs to be protected and how to do it. Insurance personnel are often too busy to inspect small fires right away, and sometimes they don't know the importance of immediate remediation. It is critical in many cases to pre-clean surfaces within 48 hrs after the fire in order to prevent further damage.


"I can clean up my own home"

True, you can clean up your home after a fire. However, if you have not been trained in the proper ways to clean soot from surfaces, you are almost certain to do additional damage to the home. Insurance companies recommend ServiceMaster for soot cleanup because they know that we can prevent further damage, and therefore keep remediation costs to a minimum. By cleaning properly we can save articles that otherwise would have to be replaced. We all have sentimental items in our homes that cannot be replaced, and ServiceMaster may be able to save those keepsakes. If you have smoke damage to your home, the best thing you can do is to call ServiceMaster immediately. The sooner you call, the sooner your home will be back to its original condition (or cleaner).



"I can stand the smell for a while"

There are several reasons why you should not breath smoky air for any length of time. First, its unpleasant. The reason your clothes smell smoky after you spend time in a smoky house is that microscopic particles from the air have lodged in the fabric. These same particles are drawn into your lungs with every breath,  and in large quantities they could be harmful. Second, people with allergies or respiratory conditions like asthma could suffer serious medical consequences. These people definitely should not spend time in a polluted atmosphere! Children and the elderly are more susceptible to airborne contaminates, also, and should not be exposed to excessive amounts. In short, breathing smoke-contaminated air is not good for anyone, and it can be dangerous for some. The sooner you have your home cleaned after a fire, the better for everyone.


"Who should I call after a fire?"

After the fire is extinguished and the premises secured, your next call should be to ServiceMaster of Gwinnett or ServiceMaster 5 Points. We will help you decide on the next steps in getting your home back to normal. After all, we have been doing this sort of work for years, and this may be your first experience with a fire. Let us help.

Don't wait!

Introducing ServiceMaster of Gwinnett & ServiceMaster 5 Points


When your office or home is struck by a natural disaster or other unfortunate circumstance, ServiceMaster of Gwinnett and ServiceMaster 5 Points have the resources and personnel to clean up and restore your property and belongings quickly.

For over 27 years, ServiceMaster of Gwinnett has provided the finest Heavy Cleaning and Disaster Restoration services available. We are experts in the cleaning and restoration of flooring, walls, and ceilings from Water Damage, Fire Damage, Mold Infestation, Smoke Damage, and Odor, and we offer Carpet, Upholstery, and Hardwood Floor cleaning as well. When disaster strikes, and homeowners and business owners alike are devastated by flood, fire, smoke or mold, we are here to restore peace of mind. That’s why it is essential to partner with a restoration company that has the skill, talent, and experience to manage every phase of your remediation project.

We offer disaster restoration services for fire damage, water damage, mold damage, trauma, and bio-hazard cleanup in addition to commercial cleaning and residential cleaning services. That means that whether you’re a place of business, a workshop, education facility, hospital, or just a home and family, we have the solutions for you.