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Flood restoration services - the best course of action when the washing machine floods the laundry room

3/13/2023 (Permalink)

Blog Summary: SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian highlights four reasons why the washing machine could flood the laundry room and explains how to handle the water damage.

SERVPRO® of Waxahachie/Midlothian provides flood restoration services and water damage cleanup for clients in Venus, TX. Whether the water is from a flash flood or a leaking washing machine, the team of IICRC-certified technicians can handle it with a rapid response and quick cleanup to get life back to normal as soon as possible.

A washing machine is an essential appliance in the home. When the washer malfunctions or breaks, the flooded laundry room can be very frustrating and stressful to deal with. The water-damaged floor needs to be rapidly restored to prevent water damage to the floor coving, substrate, baseboards, and items on the floor that might have received water damage. Here are the four most common reasons a washing machine floods the laundry room.

#1. Overloading the machine

With life so busy, the temptation is to fill the washer to full capacity to reduce the number of loads and save time and effort. When the machine is overloaded, the garments being washed can become lodged around the agitator or in the drum, and water could spill onto the floor.

Bulky items like heavy coats, bedspreads, blankets, thick towels, small runners or area rugs, and bathroom mats can quickly overload the appliance. Wash fewer bulky items at a time to reduce strain on the machine and prevent the drum from overflowing and flooding the laundry room. A full load weighs about 20-25 pounds, or about the same weight as three gallons of milk. Be aware that a load of lightweight, fluffy items may fill the drum well before reaching the appliance’s weight capacity. Be sure to read and follow the manufacturer’s instructions. Proper operation and maintenance can extend the machine's life and help keep the laundry room floor dry and safe.

#2. Faulty or ruptured water supply lines

The hot and cold supply lines should be securely attached to the washer and the water sources.  If the connections are leaky, the gaskets inside might need replacement. If the hoses are more than five to seven years old, consider replacing both hoses before they rupture. A supply line can leak seven to nine gallons of water per minute. At this rate, a flooded laundry room turns into a flooded home. High-quality, braided stainless steel connector hoses are recommended. The additional expense is worth the extra layer of security and peace of mind.

#3. The washer is unlevel

The laundry room might be flooded because the washer is unlevel or out of balance. The appliance should be leveled when installed and then checked periodically with a level if the machine begins to wobble and walk during the spin cycle. Check the level of the floor to make sure it has not shifted. The appliance can be leveled by adjusting the small feet on the bottom of the unit.

If the machine and the floor are level, the problem might be an imbalanced load. Solve the problem before flooding occurs by re-positioning the clothes in the drum. Resume the washing cycle to determine if the efforts were successful. If not, try again or remove some clothes from the washer. The issue might be the drum is overloaded.

#4. Faulty drain hose connection to the plumbing pipe

The hose runs from the washer to a plumbing pipe next to the washer. Almost 20 gallons of water will flood the laundry room if the hose comes loose from a standard washer. Periodically check the connections and hoses for leaks.

#5. Mechanical failure

Aside from the issues mentioned above that cause washing machines to flood the laundry room, mechanical failures may also result in a water release flooding the laundry space. These include:

  • Solenoid failing to shut off the water flow into the washer.
  • The water inlet valve becomes blocked by debris.
  • Debris lodges in the pump.
  • A faulty water level control valve fails to shut the machine off.
  • The drain pump wears out or breaks.

What to do when the laundry room floods

A small leak can easily be cleaned up by the homeowner. However, a significant water release needs immediate attention and a quick cleanup using powerful wet/dry vacuums to extract the water. Heavy-duty dehumidifiers and rapid-spin fans remove excess moisture. SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian is available 24/7, 365 days a year, including holidays, to provide the quick cleanup and restoration that a flooded laundry room or an entire home needs.

For more information about flood damage cleanup, contact SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian by phone at (972) 935-0827 or email at

Fire damage restoration and water removal services for property damage caused by a hair dryer fire

3/13/2023 (Permalink)

Blog Summary: SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian urges homeowners to exercise caution when using a hair dryer.

Water removal is one of the many property damage cleanup and restoration services offered by SERVPRO® of Waxahachie/Midlothian. When a hair dryer or other heat-generating device causes a fire, the scene often involves large amounts of water used to extinguish the flames if the fire department responds to the scene.

Any appliance or device that uses electricity is a potential fire hazard, and if the electrical device or appliance generates heat, the fire risk is elevated. A stove, toaster, air fryer, waffle iron, coffeepot, and hot air popcorn popper are examples of heat-producing appliances that can cause a fire in the kitchen.

Like the kitchen, the bathroom contains several heat-producing devices that can cause a fire or even explode. Many homeowners use small ceramic space heaters or heat lamps to warm their rooms on a cold morning. Unattended space heaters are a common cause of house fires. Curling irons and hair dryers reach very high temperatures and can cause a fire.

The health and beauty experts at Sojourn offer the following advice about using beauty tools that generate very high temperatures: “Most curling irons and flat irons have temperature settings that range from 125 – 425 degrees Fahrenheit. No hair should ever be subjected to heat of 400 degrees or above; unless a licensed professional is doing a special service that requires those temperatures.”

A hairdryer reaches temperatures approaching 140 degrees Fahrenheit. Though not as hot as a curling iron, a handheld hair dryer does get hot enough to catch fire. If conditions are right, the device can explode.

The use of a curling iron or hair dryer should instill a heightened awareness of the danger of electrical shock, superficial burns to the skin, hair damage, fire, and an explosion. Modern hair dryers have an outer plastic casing designed to protect the device from impacts and shield the motor and electronics inside the unit. Under normal operating conditions, the user can also have confidence that heat-producing appliances such as a space heater and heating tools such as a hair dryer can be used safely. The elevated fire risk still demands a higher level of awareness, caution, and safety when using a hair dryer.

The plastic casing can melt and catch fire

The plastic outer casing on a handheld hair dryer is designed to protect the internal components from impacts, water, and debris. The casing also protects the user from moving parts, electrical components, and heating elements inside the device. The plastic covering comes in a variety of attractive colors, shapes, and sizes to accommodate different tastes and needs. The sturdy plastic makes the hair dryer lightweight and easy to use.

The plastic housing can melt if the hair dryer overheats

Continuous use without allowing the tool to cool down, a blockage of the intake vents, or a blockage of the barrel of the device can cause overheating. These extreme temperatures can melt the plastic, and the device could catch fire. Any combustible items or flammable liquids near the haircare tool could also catch fire.

Wiring issues can cause a fire

Another hair dryer fire hazard is related to the wiring inside the tool and the external cord and plug. Damage to the plug or cord poses a fire hazard and the risk of electrical shock and grave personal injury.

Often, curling irons and hair flatteners are used in conjunction with a hair dryer. If the cord or plug of the hair dryer touches either of these two hair styling tools, the insulation can melt, exposing the “hot” wires of the hair dryer. The heating unit for curlers can also damage electrical cords or plugs. Hairstyling requires skill, concentration, and patience. It also requires attention to safety considerations. Yet, the activity is not without risk of fire.

Modern hair dryers have an emergency shutoff button on the cord near the plug. If the hair dryer catches fire, the unit can be safely turned off by pressing the button.

A hairdryer can explode

Human error or manufacturer defects are the primary causes of an explosion. Overheating is often related to the incident. Random explosions have occurred, but they are rare. Human error may involve laying the hair dryer on the counter while the device is still running. The internal motor can overheat very quickly and possibly explode. When the tool is not in use, turn it off. Place the hair dryer on a hard, dry surface away from clothing, towels, facial tissue, and flammable liquids such as alcohol, fingernail polish, and hair spray. Another option is to hang the device where airflow is not restricted and the unit can safely cool.

What to do if a hair dryer causes fire damage

A fire damage disaster often involves a chemical cleanup from a fire extinguisher discharge or a major water damage cleanup if the fire department is dispatched to the scene. SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian is available 24/7, 365 days a year, including holidays. IICRC-certified technicians arrive in about an hour to clean and restore the damaged home. The team utilizes heavy-duty wet-dry vacuums, powerful dehumidifiers, and rapid-spin fans to remove the water and excess moisture. Advanced cleaning techniques and EPA-approved products disinfect, sanitize, and deodorize the complex disaster scene.

For more information about Midlothian, TX, water removal services, contact SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian by calling (972) 935-0827 or emailing

The significance of the “Waffle House Index” for disaster preparedness and response

3/13/2023 (Permalink)

Blog Summary: SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian highlights how the “Waffle House Index” helps disaster relief agencies and communities survive and recover from a natural disaster.

The team at SERVPRO® of Waxahachie/Midlothian provides fire damage, smoke damage, storm damage, and water damage restoration services to homeowners and businesses that have suffered a property damage disaster.

Every day brings new challenges for business owners in the Dallas-Fort Worth region of North Texas. These challenges include the normal business operations of customer service, accounting and payroll, and inventory management and control. Unforeseen risks can unexpectedly arise, disrupting business operations and playing havoc with the revenue cycle. Natural disasters such as flash floods, tropical storms, tornadoes, and the devastating freeze of 2021 can bring daily life and business to a standstill.

Many businesses close their doors only to never open them again. Official estimates are that many small businesses, as many as sixty percent (60%) in some cases, are not able to reopen for business once the disaster is over and the damage is cleaned up. The financial burden is too heavy to shoulder. An emergency readiness plan is essential if a business is to literally “weather the storm.”

Many of the nation’s large “big box” stores and distribution centers have expended extraordinary effort and expense to be prepared for a wide range of worst-case scenarios. At the top of the list is Waffle House, a staple business in Texas. As of 2022, there were 121 Waffle Houses in Texas, making it number seven in the top ten states with the most Waffle House locations. This company has a corporate culture of preparedness so well respected and recognized that it sets the standard for businesses in the United States regarding being prepared, meeting challenges head-on, and continuing to serve its customer base no matter how difficult circumstances might be. Waffle House is so thorough in its preparedness that “The Waffle House Index” is informally utilized by some disaster relief officials as a metric to determine the severity of disasters that strike communities.

The Waffle House response: What the index levels mean

A pillar of the Waffle House’s mission is its fundamental commitment to supporting the disaster-stricken communities where the restaurants are located. There are three levels that indicate the company’s ability to keep its restaurants open and serve the community.

At level “Green,” a restaurant is open for normal business and operating at full capacity. The disruptions, if any, caused by the disaster are manageable.

At level “Yellow,” though the establishment is open for business, only limited service is available to patrons. Status “Yellow” may reflect issues with the power grid. Supplies and food may be running out. Waffle House’s ability to restock the stores may be hindered by bad weather, dangerous conditions, infrastructure disruptions, and supply chain interruption. If Waffle House has restaurants operating at “Yellow” capacity, the disaster must be rather severe.

A level “Red” index is the most serious. Restaurants are closed. Disaster officials can infer from the Waffle House response that the disaster’s impact was catastrophic and possibly widespread. The disaster response will be ramped up to address a large-scale disaster. Personnel from surrounding counties and nearby states may be mobilized to reflect the seriousness indicated by a “Red” index level.

The advantage of an Emergency Ready Plan

Having a plan before a disaster strikes brings a business owner or manager peace of mind. Businesses that are able to execute a strategic disaster response and recovery plan are much more likely to recover quickly and resume normal business operations. Preparation is the key to success.

Reasons to choose the SERVPRO Emergency Ready Plan

Here are seven reasons to work with SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian to create an Emergency Ready Plan.

  1. Working in concert with SERVPRO of Waxahachie / Midlothian, the business receives a no-cost assessment of its facility.
  2. A concise Emergency Ready Profile containing critical information is prepared for the business. Document preparation is efficient and quick. This upfront preparation can save valuable time and avoid advanced secondary damage in the event of a disaster.
  3. The plan serves as a guide to re-enter the facility when conditions are safe. An immediate action plan minimizes downtime.
  4. During the process, SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian is established as the primary disaster cleanup and damage restoration company. When a disaster strikes, one phone call delivers results. A team of IICRC-certified technicians arrives in about an hour, 24/7, 365 days a year, including holidays.
  5. The plan identifies the decision maker who can authorize work to begin. This efficiency allows technicians to start the mitigation process upon arrival.
  6. The SERVPRO team will have access to vital details about the facility, such as the location of electrical panels, shut-off valves, and crucial contact information.
  7. Prior planning takes the hassle out of the insurance claims process. SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian helps the business navigate the insurance claims process by coordinating the necessary paperwork, making the experience quick and easy.

To learn more about Ovila, TX, water damage restoration services, contact SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian by phone at (972) 935-0827 or by email at

Water Removal and Cleanup Services for Water Damage Caused by Commercial Plumbing Issues

2/8/2023 (Permalink)

Blog Summary: SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian sheds light on common plumbing issues at commercial facilities. These plumbing issues can damage customer perception and cut into profits.

SERVPRO® of Waxahachie/Midlothian specializes in water removal, cleanup, and restoration. When raw sewage is involved in a water damage disaster, a thorough cleanup is crucial if the site is to be made sanitary and safe.

Any disruption of a business’s revenue cycle negatively impacts its profitability. Common causes of business interruptions may include:

  • A major pandemic with widespread shutdowns, layoffs, and closings
  • Disruptions in the international supply chain
  • Worker shortages
  • Travel restrictions
  • Natural disasters such as hurricanes, tornadoes, and the February 2021 arctic blast
  • Water damage from natural and man-made causes

Any one of these challenges has the potential to shut down a small business. Recovery often requires a change in the economic climate or other factors beyond the control of the business owner.

Business owners, property owners, and facilities managers in Venus, TX, are vested in keeping their commercial buildings attractive, comfortable, safe, clean, and sanitary. The emphasis is on ‘clean’ and ‘sanitary.’ The recent pandemic has heightened national awareness of the necessity of keeping the office, shop, manufacturing unit, restaurant, retail outlet, church, school, or fitness center as pathogen-free as possible without endangering the health of the occupants with surface and airborne cleaning, disinfecting, and sanitizing chemicals. An area of concern often overlooked in the commercial and professional setting includes plumbing, septic, and sewage issues.

Employees, patrons, patients, and tenants exert tremendous pressure on a commercial plumbing system, and this continuous pressure creates new problems and amplifies any existing plumbing issues. A sewage backup in a professional office building, a school, or a daycare with a large clientele and multiple bathrooms on each floor can escalate into a catastrophe of epic proportions.

Commercial plumbing issues tend to be more expensive to repair and clean up. Multiple bathrooms and multiple floors expand the spillage zone, increasing the cost of cleanup. Work slowdowns or stoppages cut deeply into daily and monthly revenues. In fact, the loss of business may far exceed the actual costs to remedy the situation in the building.

The business owner, facilities supervisor, and property management company must keep a vigilant eye on the buildings under their care. Listed below are some of the most common plumbing issues that arise in commercial facilities.

A clogged toilet

A toilet clog is a common occurrence in the commercial world. Causes of toilet clogs include the following:

  • Frequency of usage
  • Flushing unnecessary items down the toilet
  • An animal (snake, rat, frog, or squirrel) caught in the sewer system attempting to exit through the toilet
  • Vandalism

If initial efforts with a plunger fail, contact a licensed, bonded, insured plumber to remove the clog or make any necessary repairs. Proper maintenance and scheduled cleaning will spot problems in their infancy when solutions are quick, easy, and relatively inexpensive. Delays can have the undesired effect of compounding the clog, increasing spillage, and offending the sensibilities of customers and employees.

If the janitorial staff is unable to handle an extensive spillage, bring in a professional property damage cleanup company to remove the contaminated water with heavy-duty wet/dry vacuums, reduce the moisture levels, and clean, disinfect, sanitize, and deodorize the affected areas. In a multi-story building, delays in removing the black water may allow the water to seep through the flooring and contaminate the commercial space under the toilets. Sewage is messy, smelly, and unsafe for everyone in the building. If the HVAC system is contaminated, the entire building may be negatively affected.

Drain clogs

A drain clog may not be as disruptive and annoying as a toilet clog. Items that can stop up the sink include paper towels, grease, oil, chemicals, food, or dirt and grime. If a customer, client, or employee accidentally leaves the water running, a water damage disaster could result. At seven gallons of water per minute, a faucet left running into a clogged sink can spill thousands of gallons of water per day into a commercial facility. If the water damage disaster is on an upper floor in a multi-story building, the entire operation could be shut down for days while the building is undergoing cleanup and restoration.

Do not let a sewage backup from a clogged toilet or an extensive water damage disaster from a water release shut the doors of the business and turn off profits. SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian can arrive on the scene in about an hour. If the damage is extensive, the SERVPRO franchise family can scale to any size disaster. Available 24/7, 365 days a year, including weekends, the team of IICRC-certified professionals provides a rapid response and quick cleanup to get the wheels of commerce back in motion. The SERVPRO staff can also effectively handle the insurance claims process from end to end.

For more information about Venus, TX, water removal services, contact SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian by phone at (972) 935-0827 or email at

Prevention Tips to Protect Midlothian, TX, Homes from Water and Flood Damage Caused by Winter Storms

2/8/2023 (Permalink)

Blog Summary: SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian highlights practical ways Midlothian, TX, residents can prepare for winter weather and avoid water and flood damage.

SERVPRO® of Waxahachie/Midlothian provides water damage and flood restoration services in all seasons and for any situation. Water damage and flood damage may be caused by severe thunderstorms and high winds. The culprit may be frozen pipes from frigid temperatures or flooding from torrential downpours, such as the rainfall that occurred in February 2018.

The Dallas-Fort Worth area is recognized for its tolerably mild winters and sometimes intolerably hot summers. However, frigid temperatures and frozen precipitation in the form of sleet, snow, and freezing rain can bring life to a standstill for days, as was the case in February of 2021. The wind and solar power grid completely collapsed, leaving hundreds of thousands in their cold, dark homes. Nearly 300 people lost their lives.

Many lessons were learned from this weather crisis experience. One of the most important lessons to emerge from this tragic catastrophe is the need for preparation at a level that could sustain a family through an extended period of time with limited or no infrastructure services such as power and water. The failure of the power grid meant no lights, no heat, and no cooking for many families. Many people were without water because their pipes froze and burst. Three of Fort Worth’s water treatment plants went offline due to the widespread power grid collapse. A cascade of catastrophes left the general population of North Texas cold, hungry, in the dark, and in danger for their lives.

Winter weather warnings and advisories

To survive a widespread weather catastrophe, residents need to know how to interpret and respond to the various types of winter weather advisories and warnings issued by the National Weather Service. Residents in the affected areas also need to make preparations for a winter weather worst-case scenario. The vulnerability of the power grid drives home the need to prepare not just for a fifty-year snowstorm but for the collapse of the power grid that could last days and weeks due to weather conditions that may not be all that severe. The key is to be prepared, stay vigilant, and respond correctly to the situation.

  • An “advisory” indicates if caution is exercised, these events should not threaten lives.
  • A “watch” indicates that hazardous conditions are possible, and residents must stay informed of any changes.
  • A “warning” means situations are potentially life-threatening, and residents should take immediate action to ensure their preparedness and survival.

These alerts from the National Weather Service should be taken seriously and acted upon promptly and appropriately. The proper response at the right time will save lives.

Practical planning and preparation for bad weather

Tip: Stay informed about upcoming changes and challenges in the weather. Modern weather forecasting can provide residents with advisories, watches, and warnings so they can be ready when rough weather arrives. Keep two weather radios on hand and loaded with fresh batteries, and keep a supply of batteries dedicated to powering the weather radios.

Tip: When frigid weather is forecast, make sure the home is weatherproofed to prevent water damage. Cover external faucets with insulation, and wrap exposed pipes with insulation. When temperatures plummet, turn on faucets to allow for a steady drip or slow trickle. Open the cabinet doors below the sink to allow the home’s heat to warm the pipes under the sink.

Tip: When weather forecasters predict torrential downpours, as was experienced in 2018, take immediate steps to prevent flooding and water damage. Inspect and clean out gutters. Make sure that downspouts are connected, and extensions direct the water away from the foundation. The grade around the foundation should be 1 inch of slope per foot for at least six to ten feet away from the home. Inspect the sump pump system. Clean out any debris in the sump area. Pour a bucket of water into the sump area to ensure the pump works. Test the backup sump pump as well. Inspect the attic and mark any areas where a leak is suspected. If time permits, have the roof inspected by a licensed roofing contractor. After the wet or snowy weather, reinspect the attic for any evidence of new leaks.

Tip: Inspect the garage door, the first line of defense against flooding in the garage. If needed, replace the weather stripping on the bottom of the door to prevent water from leaking into the garage.

Tip: Visually inspect exterior windows. The windows should be closed. Look for cracked or broken panes that could allow for a water intrusion.

Tip: Inspect and unclog any drains or catch basins in the yard. The fall leaf shed can greatly reduce the flow rate of water into the drain or basin, resulting in a micro flood of catastrophic proportions for that home.

The tips listed above will help prevent water damage and flood damage when temperatures are frigid, and the rain gauge is overflowing from an extended torrential downpour. When a property damage disaster strikes, trust the cleanup and restoration project to the team at SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian. Since the locally owned company is centrally located in Ellis County, a team of IICRC-certified technicians can arrive on-scene in about thirty minutes, 24/7, 365 days a year, including holidays. The rapid response and quick cleanup and restoration process get life back to normal as soon as possible.

To learn more about flood restoration services, call SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian at (972) 935-0827 or email at

Water Damage Restoration for Hotels That Sustained Water Damage Due to Plumbing Problems

2/8/2023 (Permalink)

Blog Summary: SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian serves the hotel industry by providing water damage restoration services when plumbing issues cause water damage.

SERVPRO® of Waxahachie/Midlothian specializes in water damage restoration services when hotel plumbing issues cause a water damage disaster. Trained technicians can also tackle fire damage, smoke damage, and storm damage cleanup and restoration.

Hotel managers and owners in Ovilla, TX, understand the challenges of making each guest’s stay a warm and satisfying experience. Every detail must be perfect. Plumbing is a top priority, including considerations such as the guest’s bathroom, the in-room kitchen, pool, spa, restaurants, bars, landscaping, sprinklers, and fire sprinkler system. The smallest plumbing glitch could quickly turn into a cascade of issues negatively impacting every facet of the customer’s experience. Hotel managers and owners can stay out in front of plumbing issues by taking a proactive approach that anticipates problems, finds solutions, and implements changes before an issue spirals out of control.

Resolve inadequate plumbing

A poorly designed plumbing system is impossible to overcome without a major overhaul. The best maintenance schedule and vigilance in solving isolated problems will not resolve the larger issues stemming from design and installation flaws. Generally, hotels are adequately equipped to manage plumbing needs at basic daily occupancy. Special occasions such as concerts, conferences, or conventions create periods where full occupancy is the norm. Many, if not all, of the guests, share an almost identical schedule for showering in the morning and possibly again in the evening. The plumbing system should be designed to handle maximum capacity day in and day out without fail. If the plumbing design has an insufficient load capacity engineered into the system, a disaster looms every time the guests click on the “no vacancies” sign.

The commercial venue plumbing must accommodate most of the occupants taking a shower and flushing the toilet simultaneously or within a narrow window of maximum usage. The water temperature in every shower should meet the demands of each customer, and the water pressure should be strong and uniform for every room.

Cold, weak showers, coupled with systemic sewage backups, have catastrophic consequences for a local hotel. A multi-floor water damage disaster could result from a burst pipe, and a sewage backup or toilet overflow could affect multiple rooms and multiple floors of the hotel. The disaster could generate a surge of negative reviews, which could wreck profits.

Code compliance for hotels in the area of plumbing is an absolute necessity. If there is any doubt regarding the facility’s compliance with health standards and building codes, conduct internal inspections or hire a third-party contractor to assess the system and provide a report. The findings are a solid step in the right direction. Stay on track with regular inspections: schedule repairs and upgrades.

Even if the hotel and plumbing are dated, adjustments, upgrades, and repairs can be implemented incrementally to accommodate occupancy levels, budgets, and long-term plans for the hotel and the market. Also, installing a more efficient plumbing system can eliminate leaks and conserve water usage, yielding a solid ROI.

Begin with the bathrooms

While some plumbing issues can be resolved behind the scenes because the impact does not affect guest accommodations, plumbing problems in a guest’s bathroom rarely go unnoticed. A sewage backup or toilet overflow creates a negative customer experience.

Consider the following recommendations for improving plumbing at these touch points in the guest’s journey with the hotel:

  1. Install top-quality faucets, showerheads, drains, and toilets. Drains and toilets should be free-flowing and clog-resistant. Better quality, high-efficiency, low-flow fixtures will not compromise the user’s experience.
  2. Adding hair traps to drains will eliminate clogged sinks, tubs, and showers. The cleaning staff must be trained to clean the hair traps every day without fail.
  3. Conduct daily inspections of each room for plumbing problems. Even if guests are planning to enjoy an extended stay, the room receives a daily once-over for plumbing issues when it is being cleaned. The checklist may include the following tasks:
  • Check for leaky faucets and showerheads.
  • Visually inspect the plumbing under the sink for joint and connection leaks. If possible, touch connections to detect unexplained moisture. Look for stains, warping, peeling paint, and wallpaper bubbling or separating from walls.
  • Clean drains and observe drainage rates.
  • Observe the water pressure when cleaning sinks, bathtubs, and showers.
  • Conduct a sniff test for musty, mildewy smells, which may indicate hidden leaks and mold growth.

Make reporting plumbing issues simple, fast, and easy. Reward the consistent performance of inspection duties.

Water damage restoration for hotels

Locally owned and in business since 2000 and backed by a nationwide system of qualified franchises, SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian can scale to meet any size disaster. IICRC-certified technicians arrive on-scene in less than an hour to begin the water damage cleanup and restoration process, which is crucial for hotels. Available 24/7, 365 days a year, including holidays, SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian utilizes the latest equipment, cutting-edge technology, advanced cleaning techniques, and EPA-approved cleaning products.

For more information about water damage restoration in Ovilla, TX, email SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian at or call (972) 935-0827.

How to have a safe winter grilling experience: Twelve mistakes to avoid

1/25/2023 (Permalink)

Blog Summary: SERVPRO® of Waxahachie/Midlothian highlights twelve safety tips for a great grilling experience during the winter months.

The team of fire and water damage restoration professionals at SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian is sharing twelve winter grilling safety tips for Venus, TX, residents. By following a great recipe and the grilling safety tips listed below, the winter grilling experience can be both delicious and safe.

1. Give the grill enough space

The temptation is to position the grill so that it is in the shade. However, grilling under an awning or under tree branches creates a risk hazard for fire. Embers from a charcoal or wood pellet fire can easily catch nearby objects on fire. Grills, whether gas, charcoal, or electric, must be at least 10 feet away from combustibles such as deck railings, lawn furniture, lawn equipment, and vehicles. Keep the grill at a safe distance (at least ten feet) away from the home, garage, and any outbuildings.

2. Keep hands and clothing away from the hot coals or burners

Avoid cooking in clothing with flowing, baggy sleeves that may hang precariously close to the flames or heat source of the grill. Long-handled grilling utensils help keep the cook safe during the grilling experience.

3. Stay with a lighted grill at all times

The leading cause of home fires is an unattended dish cooking on the stove. An unattended grill poses no less of a hazard. Children playing near the grill also create a potentially unsafe situation. Curious pets, especially dogs, can tip a grill over in their search for the source of the delicious smells wafting through the air. The aroma of a steak on the grill is one of the many positive features of the grilling experience. For the family and neighborhood dogs, these aromas are overwhelming. According to the veterinary care providers at VCA Animal Hospitals, “Dogs devote lots of brain power to interpreting smells. They have more than 100 million sensory receptor sites in the nasal cavity compared to 6 million in people, and the area of the canine brain devoted to analyzing odors is about 40 times larger than the comparable part of the human brain.”

4. Exercise grill hygiene

A clean grill is a safe grill. The likelihood of flare-ups and food poisoning is greatly reduced. Also, the food tastes better when cooked on a clean grill. Make cleaning the grill a part of the cooking regimen. Remove grease and fat buildup from the drip trays and grill grates.

5. Always grill outside

Gas and charcoal grills should never be used indoors, including in the garage with the door open. Risks include carbon monoxide, a deadly colorless and odorless gas produced during combustion. Also, embers from the grill can ignite a house fire, and smoke from cooking meat on the grill can cause extensive smoke damage. Walls, ceilings, furniture, drapes, and other personal belongings can be damaged or destroyed. Do not be surprised if the insurance company is reluctant to cover fire and smoke damage caused by grilling steaks in the garage.

6. Avoid overloading the grilling space with food

Overloading the grill is dangerous, especially if the food items are high in fat content. The dripping fat can cause flare-ups resulting in personal injury. Too much food to manage also leads to waste. The fire hazard is eliminated by cooking in small, manageable batches.

7. Utilize an accurate meat thermometer.

Meats must reach a food-safe cooking temperature to kill bacteria and to ensure the meat is prepared as desired.

8. Lift the lid before igniting a gas grill

A closed lid traps gas fumes that can ignite in a fireball. The solution is to ignite the grill with the lid open. If the flame should go out, turn all burner knobs to the “off” position and turn the gas off at the tank. Wait five minutes before attempting to relight the grill.

9. Completely shut down the grill when food preparation is completed

Turn all knobs to the “off” position and close the valve to the propane supply. Close the air vents on a charcoal grill. The lack of air will eventually cause the coals to go out. When the coals are cool, dispose of them in a metal container.

10. Do not fire up the grill until the means to put it out are in place

Have an ample supply of baking soda to put out a grease fire. Have a fire extinguisher, a bucket of sand, or a garden hose ready in case of other types of fires. Never spray or splash water on a grease fire.

11. Use only approved charcoal lighter fluid to start a charcoal grill

Typical lighter fluid is highly flammable and flares up when ignited, while charcoal lighter fluid is designed to ignite and spread slowly. The burn rate is much slower than lighter fluid, but the risk of fire hazard is greatly reduced. Excessive use of lighter fluid can add a chemical taste to the food.

12. Perform routine maintenance on all types of grills at least twice a year

Clean the grill thoroughly, if needed, before the inspection. Apply soapy water to the propane hose. Once the lines are opened, look for bubbles on the hose and the valve connections. Make the necessary repairs or replacements to make the system safe.

In case of a fire or water damage disaster, contact the cleanup and restoration professionals at SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian. Crews are available 24/7, 365 days a year, including holidays. A team arrives on the scene in about an hour or so. The rapid response and quick cleanup get life back to normal as soon as possible.

For more information about Venus, TX, water damage restoration services, contact SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian at (972) 935-0827 or

The dangers of a water-damaged water heater and how to recover when a water heater floods the home

1/25/2023 (Permalink)

Blog Summary: SERVPRO® of Waxahachie/Midlothian recommends homeowners replace flood-damaged water heaters. The water removal services of a certified, experienced damage restoration company are indispensable for the cleanup and restoration process.

As a leader in the restoration industry, SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian helps homeowners understand how flooding can damage a water heater and how to secure the water removal and damage restoration services needed to recover from the disaster.

The water heater and flood damage

When a water heater is damaged in a flood, the homeowners will wonder if the appliance can be salvaged. If it cannot be salvaged, the water heater should be removed, discarded, and replaced with a new one. A wrong course of action in this situation could lead to serious consequences, including electrical shock, a fire, or another water damage disaster caused by the faulty water heater.

Experts from the Air-Conditioning, Heating and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI) recommend that a flood-damaged water heater be replaced, not repaired. A flooded home or basement exposes a water heater to partial or complete submersion in water, causing catastrophic failure of the water heater. In the event of a flood, homeowners must exercise caution. Safety, not salvaging the water heater, is the top priority. Any electrical device, no matter how large or small, should receive careful attention before being used. This attention includes inspection, drying, cleaning, repairs, and cautious testing by a licensed and experienced technician.

To prevent any personal injury, damage to the electrical system of the house, or potential fire, avoid using any appliances receiving any water damage. This principle applies to all water heaters: gas, electric, and oil.

The valves and controls on a gas unit are vulnerable to corrosion damage, and the thermostats and controls in an electric water heater will also suffer from corrosion. The metal skin of the water heater is not entirely waterproof. The insulation surrounding the tank will be water-logged with contaminated flood water and will prove challenging to dry out and nearly impossible to disinfect.

Installation of a new water heater

Entrust the inspection and replacement of flood-damage appliances such as the water heater to qualified professionals. The homeowner can save money long-term by replacing the old water heater with a new high-efficiency model.

Make sure the Temperature and Pressure (TPR) valve is replaced along with the water heater; if the TPR valve is exposed to flood water, the risk of malfunction increases. A failed TPR can have catastrophic consequences for a home and its occupants.

For gas-fired water heaters, ensure that the gas line has not been crimped, mashed, or cut during the flood. The line should be purged to remove moisture, water, or dirt. For best results and to ensure the safety of the home’s residents, have a licensed, bonded, and insured professional handle all aspects of the new installation, including purging or replacing the gas line.

How to deal with the flood damage in the rest of the home

When flooding from a flash flood, a burst pipe, or storm damage occurs, secure the services of a professional property damage cleanup and restoration company to handle the job. Rapid response and quick cleanup can help return life to normal while reducing the risk of advanced secondary damage from prolonged exposure to water and moisture. Powerful pumps and wet/dry vacuums can rapidly remove any excess water from the home or basement. High-capacity dehumidifiers quickly and efficiently dry out the remaining moisture, which, if left unchecked, can cause a mold infestation.

SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian, a locally owned and operated company, has experienced, trained, and IICRC-certified technicians who utilize cutting-edge moisture-detecting technology and advanced cleaning techniques. The EPA-approved cleaning products are safe for pets and humans. The detailed and well-documented estimate provides vital information needed for the insurance claims process, which SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian can handle from beginning to end. Flood waters are often contaminated with toxic chemicals and pathogens from raw sewage. The SERVPRO technicians take every precaution to ensure their safety and the safety of the occupants of the home.

The best time to find a qualified property damage cleanup and restoration company is before a fire, smoke, or water damage disaster. Nobody wants to be calling around for a restoration company at 11:00 pm on the weekend while sewage is backing up in the shower, bathtub, and sinks. By pre-qualifying with SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian, the homeowner only has to make one call in the event of a disaster. A crew will be on the scene in about an hour or two to begin the cleanup and restoration process.

For more information about Midlothian, TX, water removal services, call SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian at (972) 935-0827 or email

Caring for pets after storm damage and during the flood damage restoration processes

1/25/2023 (Permalink)

Blog Summary: SERVPRO® of Waxahachie/Midlothian offers homeowners tips on ensuring that pets are cared for in a storm damage disaster or flash flood.

SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian is committed to helping homeowners recover from storm damage by providing reliable, rapid flood restoration services. Often when a storm or flash flood is the cause of the damage, many homes and businesses are affected. Many of these homes also include furry cats and dogs.

According to census data, residents in the Dallas-Fort Worth area are avid pet lovers. “About half of all households in the Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington metro area own a pet, according to recently-released data from the U.S. Census. Forty-one percent (41%) have at least one dog, and 17% have at least one cat.”

Americans spend $99 billion on pets and pet products each year. Pets are special and deserve careful attention before, during, and after a storm damage disaster. The family emergency-ready plan should also consider the needs of any family pets. Listed below are some tips to facilitate the creation of this pet emergency preparedness plan.

#1. Take steps to ensure pets are identifiable at all times and in any situation

Pets seem to have a sense of impending danger. During the chaos, the family dog or cat may flee the home in terror. The pet may wander for miles seeking relief from sensory overload and searching for a calm, quiet refuge.

Keep a collar and ID tags on the family dog, cat, and other four-legged pets. When pets and family members become separated, a microchip is a simple, inexpensive means to ensure pets are always identifiable. A collar and identification tag can be lost. A microchip is an onboard form of digital identification that requires only a swipe with a microchip reader to glean the pet’s information (name, owner’s contact information, etc.) embedded on the chip. The pet owner should keep their address, phone number, and other chip information current.

#2. Locate pet-friendly emergency shelters

Before disaster strikes, identify emergency shelters and safe escape routes to these shelters. If homeowners and their family members have pets, search for shelters that accommodate animals. Due to the public health hazards posed by animals, many shelters cannot allow pets. Create a list of kennels or animal shelters that can safely house pets until the danger has passed. Identify hotels that allow pets. If none of these options are available, identify a trusted friend or relative who lives outside the affected area and ask them to take care of the pets during the disaster cleanup and restoration process.

#3. Customize an emergency kit with supplies for each pet

Remember to include the needs of family pets when assembling an emergency supply kit. Designate one of the family members to grab the pet emergency kit and take care of the pets during the disaster. The emergency preparedness kit for the pets should include the following items:

  • Food and water for at least several days
  • Spare ID tags, leashes, or harnesses
  • Pet carriers
  • Garbage bags for clean up
  • First aid items that are safe for pets, along with any medications
  • Vital pet data, such as vaccination records and photographs for identification
  • Pet toys
  • Kitty litter

#4. Contact the ASPCA to obtain a rescue alert sticker

Attach the rescue alert stickers on or near the front door to inform rescue workers that pets may be inside the home. The pet owner may also want to include other information, such as the number and types of pets, the veterinarian’s contact information, and personal contact information. If threatening weather conditions are approaching, affix the sticker in a highly visible location near the front door. If an evacuation should be necessary, note this information on the sticker when leaving the premises.

Pets are beloved family members and need special attention during any event that disrupts the household's daily routine. Be mindful that pets may not always respond positively to first responders, rescue workers, or cleanup and restoration crews.

When storm or flood damage occurs, contact the team of cleanup and restoration professionals at SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian. Available 24/7, 365 days a year, including holidays, technicians can be on-scene in about an hour. The rapid response and quick cleanup help prevent advanced secondary damage such as mold infestation.

For more information about flood restoration services in Ovilla, TX, contact SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian by phone at (972) 935-0827. The office can also be reached by emailing

A real fire hazard that can lead to a fire damage disaster

1/11/2023 (Permalink)

Blog Summary: SERVPRO® of Waxahachie/Midlothian explains how a cleanup for the New Year can help avoid fire damage.

SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian highlights the connection between seasonal hazards and restoration services after a fire damage disaster. Fire prevention during the holidays involves identifying the seasonal activities that elevate the risk of a fire and smoke damage disaster. Seasonal activities increase the risk of a fire and the likelihood of other types of property damage. Here are some examples:

  • Seasonal cooking (fire)
  • More frequent use of the fireplace, wood stove, and fire pit (fire)
  • Live Christmas tree (fire)
  • Decorations and celebratory lighting (fire)
  • Candles (fire)
  • Fireworks (fire)
  • More visitors and overnight guests (water damage, sewage backup)
  • Clutter (fire damage)

That clutter increasing the fire risk is not surprising, and the holidays seem to generate even more clutter. The National Institutes of Health outlines the fire safety dangers stemming from the clutter in the home. “Specifically, the fire safety dangers to be aware of when having too much stuff in the workplace and the home includes:

  • Increased risk of fire due to the accumulation of combustibles such as papers, clothing, and rubbish.
  • Increased fire severity due to an abnormal amount of fuel that will overtax existing automatic sprinkler systems.
  • Blocked escape from fire due to the exits, hallways, windows, and doors being obstructed by clutter.
  • Extreme risk to fire-emergency response personnel.
  • Risk of injury or death due to being trapped under falling items.”

The consequences of clutter

Clutter is a real problem with real consequences. It can have emotional effects, such as causing stress and anxiety. Clutter can also lead to physical injury when attempting to escape a house fire. Piles of magazines and newspapers, mounds of clothing, and teetering towers of hoarded electronics can impede a timely escape when seconds mean the difference between life and death. A clutter cleanout reduces the fire risk and improves how a person feels while also reducing the risk of injury associated with navigating through a maze of mess to escape a fire.

Tips for tackling the clutter

The scope of the clutter cleanup can be overwhelming. Plan to succeed by making a plan and sticking to it. Below are some helpful tips.

Tip #1: Inspect the home and assess the risk level.

Take a look around the home. Identify the main clusters of clutter. Rate the extent of the problem:

  • Spotty: A pile here and a pile there but limited to a room or area
  • Systemic: Here and there, but not limited to one room or area
  • Severe: Piles of clutter in every room
  • Out of control: Piles of clothing, magazines, newspapers, and recyclables (plastic and glass containers) in every room, with hallways, doorways, and steps often impassible

Tip #2: Designate the room or area where the journey will begin.

Victories often are the result of small successes. Choose a room or area that can be cleaned up in a reasonable amount of time. The open space will be an incentive to keep cleaning.

Tip #3: Schedule a block or blocks of time during the holidays to begin the cleaning process. Set aside adequate time in the schedule to tackle the pile, room, or area successfully. Tenaciously protect the time scheduled for the cleanout.

Tip #4: Enlist the services of family members to help with the cleanup. Send them reminders by social media a few days in advance with a reminder the day of the event.

Tip #5: Make the necessary preparations before the cleanup.

Make a list of items that will be needed for the cleanup. The list may include the following items:

  • Heavy-duty plastic contractor bags (Avoid a back injury or muscle strain by not overfilling the bags.)
  • PPG: nitrile gloves, eye protection, an N-95 mask or respirator, thick-soled shoes, an LED headlamp, etc.
  • Cleaning products such as wipes, all-purpose cleaners, disinfectants, deodorizers
  • Equipment: Broom, dustpan, rags
  • Hand truck or dolly to transport loaded bags, heavy electronics, and furniture to a vehicle, trailer, garbage can, or dumpster

Tip #6: When the day arrives, go clean up.

Find a steady pace, and do not get frustrated. Focus on the tasks at hand, and do not forget to celebrate the completion of each major task!

Tip #7: Pile with a purpose.

Assign three piles with the following designations: throw away, give away, or keep. Qualifications for the rubbish or recycle bin pile include items that are damaged, broken, no longer needed, or have not been worn in a year or more. Newspapers, magazines, plastic bottles, and glass jars go in this pile. When donating or selling items, remember that one person’s trash is another person’s treasure. Let go of old objects and enjoy the freedom and open spaces.

An item goes in the keeper pile if it

  • is used regularly
  • has a dedicated storage space
  • does not contribute to clutter in the home

Clutter in the home, garage, or basement can hinder mobility or present a serious fire hazard during the holiday season. Should fire damage occur, the homeowner can turn to the team of fire damage cleanup professionals at SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian to remediate the fire and smoke damage.

For more information about seasonal hazards and restoration services in Venus, TX, and nearby areas, contact SERVPRO of Waxahachie/Midlothian by calling (972) 935-0827 or by emailing