Recent Posts

SERVPRO Provides Emergency Dallas Winter Flood Restoration

4/9/2021 (Permalink)

According to February 2021 reports, State Farm customers in Texas filed 18,900 claims in a single week, with a significant portion of these claims related to frozen or burst pipes. This figure is a considerable increase compared to only 75 Texas frozen pipe claims filed through State Farm in 2020.
When frozen pipes are flooding a Dallas home, SERVPRO is available to respond quickly to disaster and return affected properties to a preloss state. Certified restoration technicians undergo training in emergency water cleanup situations per Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) standards.

SERVPRO Santa Barbara was one of the first teams out to help the people in Texas. We never pass up an opportunity to help others in need. We drove 2 days in conditions we hardly experience here in Santa Barbara, like snow, hail, and very icy roads. This shows that no matter what we are here to help and to make things "Like it never even happened."

Fire in a family owned restaurant

4/6/2021 (Permalink)

fire in commercial kitchen Fire in a family owned restaurant

Family-owned restaurants are owned by people who live in town.   These folks are our neighbors and we know they work hard to compete with their larger rivals.  When something goes wrong, it can be a catastrophe.  Any loss of business stings so it is a priority to keep the restaurant open and running smoothly.  When a local Mexican food restaurant had a kitchen fire, it was urgent to get the business back open quickly.

Fortunately, the owner put in a call to SERVPRO of Santa Barbara and Santa Ynez/Goleta.  Our team went to work cleaning every nook and cranny.  We had air scrubbers scrubbing air and hydroxyl generators generating hydroxyls.  The smoke odor didn’t stand a chance and before long, it gave up and disappeared.  The restaurant re-opened and was back in business and smelling great, that’s the SERVPRO way.

Love/hate with rain in Santa Barbara county

3/23/2021 (Permalink)

Man standing in flooding from rain in Santa Barbara, CA We love rain in Santa Barbara but too much at once can cause flooding

The weather here in Santa Barbara is largely influenced by the Pacific Ocean.  At any given point in time, the ocean is either warming up or cooling down and those temperature changes play a large role in how much precipitation we are expected to receive each year.  In years when the ocean is observed to be warming up, it is said that we are in a weather pattern known as El Nino, or "little boy".  When the opposite happens and the water is cooling, the phenomena is known as La Nina, or “little girl”.

In years when the rain is good, we are stuck with a Catch-22 situation because we want the rain, and we want a lot of rain, but it sometimes comes in large amounts over a short period not giving the ground time to absorb what has fallen.  The County has begun to take steps to hopefully deter future debris flows by installing ring netting over the most problematic creeks.  They have worked on creating a better warning system for residents in the burn-zone areas.  Everybody is taking pre-cautions so the chances of mudslides are diminished and  hopefully those measures will be successful.  SERVPRO of Santa Barbara and Santa Ynez/Goleta was proud to be a small piece of the recovery during the Montecito mudslide and will remain ever-vigilant for future storms.

Contact SERVPRO of Santa Barbara at 805-963-0606.

Recommendations After a Fire

3/23/2021 (Permalink)

Heavy smoke damage in a kitchen in Santa Barbara, CA heavy smoke damage

SERVPRO of Santa Barbara & Santa Ynez / Goleta knows that fires cause damage but often do not completely destroy a home. These claims are often called “partial losses” because the home has only been partially destroyed. Many families in Santa Barbara call SERVPRO regularly to find out what issues to watch out for with partial losses.

In any property loss situation, there are basic steps to follow to ensure the insurance recovery process goes smoothly.  SERVPRO recommends that you photo document everything that was damaged or destroyed, file a timely claim. Fire restoration work takes patience, understanding, and consistent and timely communication. Be prepared to dedicate your time, energy, and persistence to work with highly trained restoration specialists like SERVPRO who will guarantee their work.

Some important tips for dealing with a fire loss:

1.Structural Smoke Damage Removal

Regardless of the fire's size, large or small, the smoke will usually impact your entire home. If the smoke damage is not too heavy, we should be able to clean most everything with SERVPRO specailty clean products. However, it is important to know it is not safe to live inside a house with fire damage, even if all the smoke is cleared away.  There is likely to be soot and harmfull particles around that you can't see with the naked eye. Immediately after a fire, you may begin to notice stains on your walls, ceilings, or other plaster surfaces. As the hours pass, you may also begin to notice rust and corrosion on metal hardware throughout your home.  In addition, your fabric items may slowly begin to show visible signs of smoke damage.  This level of smoke damage requires professional guidance on how to handle items affected.

2. As Much as Possible Limit Activity

Limit your activity and movement in the house until your home is restored.  This helps prevent soot particles from being embedded into upholstery and carpets. During a fire, soot spreads to the whole house, attaching to surfaces.  The acidic properties of soot can further damage your home and indoor air quality if the soot is not removed immediately. Soot can inhabit your home even if there wasn't a fire. Use gloves so you don’t further soil upholstery, walls, and woodwork. Protect your things by placing clean towels or old linens on rugs, upholstery, and carpet traffic areas. Before you clean, know the best cleaning method for that particular cleaning job. 

For further assistance or more information please contact us ANYTIME at (805) 963-0606 or at info@SERVPROsantabarbara.com

SERVPRO can restore your documents after a fire or water damage?

3/23/2021 (Permalink)

stack of filed papers in Santa Barbara, CA Even in todays digital world we still use paper for original documents

SERVPRO wants to take care of our customers in Santa Barbara, CA in their most vulnerable time of need, that is why we offer the professional services that we do: emergency mitigation, fire and water restoration, mold remediation, bio hazard cleaning and so much more. However, one restoration service that can be overlooked is our customer’s paper documents and records. Even today in our digital world we still have valuable papers. These items if mostly intact can be restored and digitized. 

If you are not familiar with it, here is an overview.

SERVPRO offers four services: Vacuum Freeze Drying, Gamma Irradiation, Digitizing, and Certified Destruction. Vacuum Freeze Drying is the most effective way to salvage water damaged documents. The saturated documents are immediately frozen and shipped from the loss site to our Corporate office. immediately freezing the documents arrests further damage. Mold is less likely to grow, ink will not run, pages are less likely to fall apart. Freezing is the first part to drying via sublimation. Sublimation is the process of solid ice converting directly to the gas state bypassing the liquid state. This prevents further damage to the water-logged documents. This process takes between 7-10 days depending on the severity and the number of documents affected. Gamma Irradiation is a process that is used for cleaning/disinfecting and decontaminating documents. In a CAT 3 situation (sewage or flood water), documents are not only deteriorating but are also contaminated with all types of bacteria. Using high-energy photons, the bacteria is killed at the molecular level. There is no fear of residual radiation or contamination, so don’t worry, you won’t turn into a green comic hero. If you want to digitize l with your records, we can do that too.

To bullet point and sum up the above article:

  • Drying- process in which an item containing moisture is frozen and dried using vacuums and pressures to achieve sublimation (A process in which a substance is converted directly from a solid to a gas or from a gas to a solid without an intermediate liquid phase.) Note: Damaged documents should be frozen as quickly as possible to stabilize them and prevent further damage.
  • Cleaning- we offer onsite cleaning. This is cleaning each document front and back to remove debris and any surface particulate. 
  • Sterilization- Gamma Irradiation is a process that is used for disinfecting and decontaminating documents or other consumer goods. 
  • Deodorization- once paper has been wet, an odor can begin to form. Letting us deodorize your documents will reduce the odor and sometimes almost eliminate it. 
  • Destruction- we offer destruction onsite.
  • Digitization- digitizing documents makes them easier to access as well as easier to store. We use state-of-the-art equipment to turn your paper copy into a digital file.

If you find yourself in need of saving damaged documents, call SERVPRO and we will work hard to make it "Like it never even happened."

Contact us anytime at (805) 963-0606

A,BC,D ... and K ! know what fire extinguisher will work on what fire

3/22/2021 (Permalink)

Fire extinguisher hanging on the wall in Santa Barbara, CA Fire Extinguisher ready to go to work if needed

It is widely known that having an in-date fire extinguisher on your property is imperative to fire safety, but did you know that there are different kinds of fire extinguishers, as well as a proper way in which to use one?  Keeping yourself, your family, and your property protected in the event of a structure fire is paramount, and the below information can help facilitate that process.

Q:  What are the different kinds of fire extinguishers, and what is each used for?

A:  The U.S. Fire Administration defines five primary types of fire extinguishers used to put out different kinds of fires:

  1. A – used for ordinary material fires, such as wood, cloth, or paper.
  2. B – for use with combustible or flammable liquids like grease, gasoline, or oil.
  3. C – for use with electrical equipment like appliances and tools.
  4. D – for use with flammable metals.
  5. K – for use with animal oils, vegetable oils, and fats in cooking appliances.

One way to help remember which letter is for which type fire is; A for ash, B for Barrel, C for current, D for Dynamite and K for Kitchen. 

Many fire extinguishers may also be multipurpose, in that they carry multiple letter definitions and can put out a variety of material fires.

Q:  What is the proper way to use a fire extinguisher?

A: The U.S. Fire Administration suggests the acronym “PASS” as a means of properly discharging a fire extinguisher:

     P - Pull the pin. Hold the extinguisher with the nozzle pointing away from you and release the locking mechanism.

     A - Aim low. Point the extinguisher at the base of the fire.

     S - Squeeze the lever slowly and evenly

     S - Sweep the nozzle from side to side

To keep yourself safe, it is important to use extreme caution within a fire damaged structure, and always follow the guidance of local fire authorities.  SERVPRO of Santa Ynez/Goleta has a full line of fire clean up and restoration services in Santa Barbara, and we are Here to Help when you need.

Call us anytime for cleanup help (805) 963-0606

FIRE Mitigation (mitigation = the process or result of making something less severe)

3/19/2021 (Permalink)

Fire damage to a car port in Santa Barbara, CA Fire damages local businesses

Mitigation = Stopping further damage from happing after a fire is one of the first considerations once the fire has been put out in your home or business. A fire damage in your Santa Barbara business can greatly affect your ability to continue operations. To recover as much value as possible from your fire damaged property that also will have smoke damage, and soot damage, a restoration company like SERVPRO should be contacted immediately. SERVPRO can help secure the property and carefully work with the authorities as often a cause and origin investigation will need to be completed by the fire department and possible the insurance company as well. The fire cleanup team at SERVPRO can assist in evaluating the damage to the property and listing the items that are present.

SERVPRO can also perform fire damage restoration and offer an estimate onsite. The fire cleanup usually includes drying up all the water that firefighters used to put the fire out which can flood the premises. This water can cause extensive water damage causing the growth of bacteria and mold. Any residual smoke smell will be ventilated until gone. A certified technician can dry out the property and prevent mold growth using industrial equipment that sometimes includes a water extractor, a dehumidifier, and an air mover along with air filtration equipment. All surfaces are cleaned and sanitized removing all of the smoke and soot damage. The SERVPRO fire damage clean-up team will also instruct property owners how to prevent commercial fire damage in the future. If the smoke smell continues, chemical solutions like an ozone treatment or thermal fogging are also options depending on the needs of the property owner. Additional treatments may be needed weeks or even months after the initial incident.

Fire cleanup can be extremely daunting. However, fire damage restoration is normal for a fire cleanup specialist, even in the aftermath of commercial fire damage. A specialist who has the experience and the expertise to guide a property owner will ensure that fire damage is minimized as much as possible

SERVPRO Recommendations for Fire Prevention

3/19/2021 (Permalink)

Photo of flames in Santa Barbara, CA Burning fires should never be left unattended

No ever one wants to deal with a fire in their home. If at all possible, it is better to prevent a fire if you can. There are some easy things you can do to make your home safer and reduce the risk of a blaze.

SERVPRO understands that residents are concerned about fire damage restoration in their Santa Barbara homes. We are available to help 24/7/365 (all year round). However, there are some simple things you can take to prevent a fire:

  • Never leave burning items unattended, including candles, fires, incense, cigarettes, and stoves. (consider flameless candles)
  • If you have any pets or children, invest in safety gates so they cannot enter the kitchen unnoticed. 
  • Do not overload electrical sockets.
  • Keep radiators uncovered and with proper clearance around them.

It is also a good idea to remember to test your fire alarm regularly and ensure your family knows about fire safety. However, even with the best care, a fire can still break out. If you need help with fire damage restoration, call SERVPRO. We will take care of everything from cleaning up soot to getting rid of odors.


For fire damage restoration you can trust, call your local SERVPRO at (805) 963-6060

California Wildfires Cleanup

3/19/2021 (Permalink)

wildfire burning in the hills wildfire burning in Santa Barbara County

When our are has a little to no rain and continued dry conditions will turn the hills behind Santa Barbara into a tinderbox.  In recent years, we have experienced the smoke, ash, and flames from The Gap Fire, The Jesusita Fire, The Tea Fire, and The Thomas Fire.  Historically, there have been many other wildfires in our town as nature exerts its powerful forces.  We have to expect that in the future, wildfires will continue to be a problem for us here locally.Strong winds and low relative humidity have caused wildfires to quickly erupt across California. Extended drought and high temperatures have led to drier than normal conditions across the area, further fueling the wildfires.

Personal safety is always the primary concern in these situations, the first several days after the fire is under control is the critical time to preventing secondary damages from smoke and soot. Once the local authorities say it is safe to return to your home and/or business, SERVPRO of Santa Barbara would like to offer the following steps to help minimize additional harmful effects.

DO:

  • Limit movement in the home to prevent soot particles from being embedded into upholstery and carpets.
  • Keep hands clean. Soot on hands can further soil upholstery, walls and woodwork.
  • Brush vacuum loose soot particles from upholstery, drapes and carpet.
  • Place clean towels or old linens on rugs, upholstery and carpet traffic areas.
  • If electricity is off, empty freezer and refrigerator completely and prop doors open.
  • Clean and protect chrome on kitchen and bathroom faucets, trim and appliances with light coating of Vaseline or oil.
  • Wash house plants on both sides of leaves.
  • Change HVAC filter.
  • Tape double layers of cheesecloth over air registers.

DON’T:

  • Don't attempt to wash any walls or painted surfaces or shampoo carpet or upholstery without contacting your local SERVPRO Franchise Professional.
  • Don't attempt to clean any electrical appliances, TV sets, radios, etc. that may have been close to fire, heat or water without first consulting an authorized repair service.
  • Don't use any canned or packaged food or beverages that may have been stored near the fire, heat or water. They may have been contaminated.
  • Don't turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet. The wiring may be damaged.
  • Don't send garments to an ordinary dry cleaner. Improper cleaning may set smoke odor. 

Even if your property didn’t suffer fire damage, there could be soot particles and residues left to clean up. If not cleaned properly, the odor and effects can linger long after the fire has been put out. From the structure itself to the contents inside, SERVPRO Professionals use the latest technology and training to leave your property smelling fresh and clean. Call us anytime for help 24/7/365

SERVPRO of Santa Barbara (805) 963-0606

Smoke Detectors the forgotten sentinel!

3/16/2021 (Permalink)

Smoke Detector covered  by smoke Smoke Detectors Save Lives !

Smoke alarms. We don't think much of them unless the battery is low and they start to beep or you have a fire in your Santa Barbara home!

One Buellton home owner just recently had a small electrical fire start in the kitchen in the middle of the night. The smoke alarms worked, waking the family up so they could evacuate and quickly extinguish the fire with a small fire extinguisher. There is little doubt this fire would have been much more devastating if the smoke alarms were not functioning properly or non- existent. 

Please take the time to maintain them and test them at least once a month. If they are close to 10-years-old, you should get new ones. FEMA and the American Red Cross recommend this.

Also, according to FEMA, the risk of death if you do have a home fire is cut in half for homes with smoke alarms. 

Also, smoke alarms can limit fire damage as well as was the case of the Buellton home owner who was able to awaken and put the fire out before it grew. SERVPRO recommends everyone get out of the home and dial 911 during a fire. 

Please checkup on those sentinels!