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Smoke, Soot, and My Home

10/30/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Smoke, Soot, and My Home Smoke and soot can cause different types of damage; there are different kinds of fires, which makes for difficult cleaning. Luckily, you have SERVPRO!
Smoke, Soot, and Your Home

Smoke and soot is very invasive and can penetrate various cavities within your home, causing hidden damage and odor. Our smoke damage expertise and experience allows us to inspect and accurately assess the extent of the damage to develop a comprehensive plan of action.  

Smoke and soot facts:

  • Hot smoke migrates to cooler areas and upper levels of a structure.
  • Smoke flows around plumbing systems, seeping through the holes used by pipes to go from floor to floor.
  • The type of smoke may greatly affect the restoration process.

Different Types of Smoke

There are two different types of smoke–wet and dry. As a result, there are different types of soot residue after a fire. Before restoration begins, SERVPRO of Reno NW / Truckee / Tahoe Vista will test the soot to determine which type of smoke damage occurred. The cleaning procedures will then be based on the information identified during pretesting. Here is some additional information:

Wet Smoke – Plastic and Rubber

  • Low heat, smoldering, pungent odor, sticky, smeary. Smoke webs are more difficult to clean.

Dry Smoke – Paper and Wood

  • Fast burning, high temperatures, heat rises therefore smoke rises.

Protein Fire Residue – Produced by evaporation of material rather than from a fire

  • Virtually invisible, discolors paints and varnishes, extreme pungent odor.

Our Fire Damage Restoration Services

Since each smoke and fire damage situation is a little different, each one requires a unique solution tailored for the specific conditions.  We have the equipment, expertise, and experience to restore your fire and smoke damage.  We will also treat your family with empathy and respect and your property with care.

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?

Call Us Today – 775-287-7040

For more information and to keep up with our tips, follow SERVPRO on Twitter: @SERVPRO10274

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24/7/365 Water Damage Experts

10/30/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial Flooding Restoration

Flooding and water damage events at Reno NW / Truckee / Tahoe Vista commercial properties are often complex with numerous issues that require a knowledgeable and flexible response. Sometimes its a small amount of water damage, sometimes its a torrential flood. In any case, SERVPRO is "Faster to any size disaster".

In many instances, normal operations can continue in a temporary space while we restore your facility.

Restoring Commercial Properties Presents Unique Challenges

Our professionals are trained to be mindful of legal and environmental concerns and strive to fully restore the damaged area while working within your budgetary constraints. We understand that every hour spent cleaning up is an hour of lost revenue and productivity. So when an emergency situation arises in your business, give us a call and we’ll be there fast with the help you need.

About SERVPRO of Reno NW / Truckee / Tahoe Vista

SERVPRO of Reno NW / Truckee / Tahoe Vista specializes in the cleanup and restoration of commercial and residential property after a water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.

Meet Our Crew Crew Photo Page

Find out more About Us

Biohazard and Crime Scene Cleanup

10/19/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation Biohazard and Crime Scene Cleanup Biohazards don't just stop at the scene; if left untreated residue and organic material can begin to smell or fuel mold growth.

Biohazard cleanup is also known as crime scene cleanup or trauma scene cleanup.  

SERVPRO of Reno NW / Truckee / Tahoe Vista's biohazard professionals provide this supportive service for victim’s families.

A trauma scene clean up is an emotional and stressful time for homeowners. Providing a level of sympathy and understanding for the people affected is one of our main priorities. 

While the police and other first-response services may spend limited time with the family members, SERVPRO cleaning professionals work around the family longer while we are cleaning and performing restoration of the scene. One reason to promptly clean the scene is to avoid bacterial and microbial growth (which can lead to odor).

Our professionals strive for the comfort of the homeowners as we return their home to normal.

If your home has been the scene of a crime or trauma, SERVPRO can help you in getting your home and your life back on track. Our staff is trained in all facets of property damage restoration; from training at SERVPRO’s Corporate Training Facility to regular IICRC industry certifications, our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property. 

You have enough to worry about; let SERVPRO handle the cleanup.

What To Do In A Flood

10/19/2018 (Permalink)

When water is damaging your home, does your fight or flight instinct kick in? No matter what the source of the water is, action in the initial moments can have a huge impact on the damage you sustain. Of all the priorities in those first seconds, none have the potential for irreversible harm, than those that ensure safety.

If you're like most people, your first thought during water damage is probably, "SHUT THE WATER OFF!" 

Let's analyze this:
If you have to wade through water to shut it off, what hazards do you face?

  • Is the water contaminated?  
  • Is there furniture or debris that could make you slip and fall?
  • Are there electrical shock hazards?
  • Is there more than 6 inches of water? (If there is, is it moving? If so, it is enough to knock a fully grown adult off their feet.)
  • Could there be water-dwelling wildlife just under the surface?

SERVPRO of Reno NW / Truckee / Tahoe Vista's Water Damage Emergency Tips can help get you through those crucial steps in getting your home back, and making the flooding look "like it never even happened." Your safety in a flood is paramount!

For updates on safety and tips on disasters like this, follow @SERVPRO10274 on Twitter!

What To Do During A Fire

10/19/2018 (Permalink)

What to Do During a Fire

Typically, when it comes to fires, an 'ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure'. Find out how to prevent fires and be prepared for them by clicking through our blogs!

Unfortunately, not every fire is predictable. Fires can start because of lightning during storms, electrical surges, neighbors, or even just the dryness of the environment (something we have in abundance here in Nevada, especially during the winter!).

During a fire, many people panic. Not only does panicking make it much harder to organize yourself and others in an emergency, it also speeds up breathing--a potentially lethal mistake in a house or apartment fire. Smoke inhalation has “a 2-to-1 ratio of smoke inhalation to burns for fire deaths overall, while fire incident reports show an 8-to-1 ratio for home fire deaths,” according to the National Fire Protection Association. Remember the Triple S:  Keep your breathing Shallow, Slow, and Steady!

According to, what you should do if you find yourself in a fire is:

  • Crawl low under any smoke to your exit - heavy smoke and poisonous gases collect first along the ceiling.
  • Before opening a door, feel the doorknob and door. If either is hot, or if there is smoke coming around the door, leave the door closed and use your second way out.

  • If you open a door, open it slowly. Be ready to shut it quickly if heavy smoke or fire is present.
  • If you can’t get to someone needing assistance, leave the home and call 9-1-1 or the fire department. Tell the emergency operator where the person is located.
  • If pets are trapped inside your home, tell firefighters right away.

  • If you can’t get out, close the door and cover vents and cracks around doors with cloth or tape to keep smoke out.  Call 9-1-1 or your fire department. Say where you are and signal for help at the window with a light-colored cloth or a flashlight.
  • If your clothes catch fire, stop, drop, and roll – stop immediately, drop to the ground, and cover your face with your hands.  Roll over and over or back and forth until the fire is out.  If you or someone else cannot stop, drop, and roll, smother the flames with a blanket or towel.  Use cool water to treat the burn immediately for 3 to 5 minutes.  Cover with a clean, dry cloth.  Get medical help right away by calling 9-1-1 or the fire department.

Once everyone is safe, and the damage is done, call SERVPRO to restore your belongings and handle smoke left in clothing and furnishings. Fires can be devastating, so let SERVPRO make it "Like it never even happened." 

For more information and to keep up with our tips, follow SERVPRO on Twitter: @SERVPRO10274

And, stay in the loop on Facebook with us, too: SERVPRO10274

Preventing Fires: Your Mission

10/19/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Preventing Fires: Your Mission Prevent fire from destroying your home!
Preventing Fires: Your Mission

You may have never had a fire before--and we certainly hope it stays that way!--but if you’re just putting your life back together after a fire loss, and want to make sure it never happens again, you have a mission to complete below:

Practice Your Escape Plan:

  • Make sure there are two exits from each room in case of emergency.
    • GET CREATIVE: A secondary route might be a window onto a neighboring roof or a collapsible ladder for escape from upper story windows. Craftiness saves lives.
  • Make sure that windows are not stuck, screens can be taken out quickly, and that security bars can be properly opened.
  • Practice feeling your way out of the house in the dark or with your eyes closed.
  • Teach children not to hide from firefighters.


If you are in a high-risk area for fire damage, you might be eligible for a free smoke alarm: the Red Cross is aiming to reduce 25% of deaths caused by fires by the year 2020. They may be able to install a free smoke alarm in your residence! Knowing that there IS a fire is the first step to being safe from burns and smoke inhalation.

  • Install both ionization AND photoelectric smoke alarms, OR dual sensor smoke alarms, which contain both ionization and photoelectric smoke sensors.
  • Test batteries monthly.
  • Install smoke alarms on every level of your home, including the basement, both inside and outside of sleeping areas.
  • Replace the entire smoke alarm unit every 8-10 years or according to manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Never disable a smoke alarm while cooking – it can be a deadly mistake.
  • There are also visual alarms for the hearing-impaired, and audible instruction alarms that will give directions aloud.

For their longer list of fire tips, visit

SERVPRO will gladly handle the aftermath of a home or apartment fire--we know first hand how devastating the effects can be, that’s why we got into the restoration business. We want to see your property clean, undamaged, and smoke-free. If it isn’t currently looking like that’s the case, give us a call!

For more information and to keep up with our tips, follow SERVPRO on Twitter: @SERVPRO10274

And, stay in the loop on Facebook with us, too: SERVPRO10274

Hidden Water Damage: What It Does

10/19/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Hidden Water Damage: What It Does House Smells After a Leak? Hidden Water Might Be to Blame. When water is hiding in the walls, let SERVPRO dry it out! Water and mold don't stand a cha
Hazards of Hidden Water After Water Damage
  • Imagine this: a pipe breaks, water jets out, filling your crawlspace. Now, imagine your irrigation malfunctions and begins to deposit gallons of water in your home. This water, assisted by gravity and capillary action can quickly spread throughout your structure giving mold the moisture it needs to get a foothold and grow.
  • Gravity, of course, pulls the water down through your house affecting everything in its path. Capillary action, on the other hand, pulls water up behind cabinets, into the drywall and wall cavities.  Both of these actions work together to create one of the biggest hazards in water damages: water you cannot see.  This unseen water left untreated is a main factor in microbial and mold growth.
  • SERVPRO of Reno NW / Truckee / Tahoe Vista has the tools and experience to not only find this dangerous hidden moisture, but also remove it, making your water damage, "Like it never even happened."

For more information and to keep up with our tips, follow SERVPRO on Twitter: @SERVPRO10274

And, stay in the loop on Facebook with us, too: SERVPRO10274

Mold 101: 3 Steps to Understanding Mold

10/19/2018 (Permalink)

Mold 101: 3 Steps to Understanding Mold

First: Mold is part of the environment, and plays an important part of our ecosystem.  Without it, we would not have the antibiotic penicillin, garbage and old food would never decay, and neither would all the leaves that fall off during autumn time! (Can you imagine the mess?) 

Certain types of cheese even rely on mold for their flavor (that’s right, your favorite blue cheese? That’s mold. Really tasty mold). Mold breaks down dead plant and animal material, returning useful nutrients to the soil. 

Second: But mold in your home or business can be a dangerous problem. The problem occurs when water damage supplies mold with the moisture it needs to colonize inside structures. Elevated mold spore counts can cause adverse health effects on otherwise healthy people. It is always better to check with professionals than to attempt remediation yourself!

Third: Call SERVPRO of Reno NW/Truckee/Tahoe Vista if you suspect you have a mold problem. If mold is found, we have the training, equipment, and expertise to remediate your mold infestation. 

For more information and to keep up with our tips, follow SERVPRO on Twitter: @SERVPRO10274

And, stay in the loop on Facebook with us, too: SERVPRO10274

Displaced Wildlife and Animals in Your Home

10/19/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Displaced Wildlife and Animals in Your Home "Only you can prevent wildfires--but only I can destroy a home with my BEAR hands!"

It's not nearly as uncommon as we'd like to think! Bear break-ins are a serious matter and can leave your home, office, vehicle or other property looking like a tornado tore through it. Local bears have a motivation for calories--especially in the winter, up to 20,000 calories in a day!--that can lead them to view your dwelling as a prime opportunity to locate food.

Most homes are no match for a bear's incredible strength and intelligence. They are adept at gaining access to a home by whatever means necessary. The amount of destruction they can cause while in your home is astonishing.

Cabinets, refrigerators, microwaves and any other place a bear thinks may contain food are easily dispatched, causing extensive damage to your home and furnishings.

Customers have remarked that it looks as if rooms have exploded. Finding your home damaged by a bear is a traumatic experience. SERVPRO of Reno NW / Truckee / Tahoe Vista has the skill, equipment and experience to deal with the damage left behind by a bear's rampage.

Boarding up the exterior damage where the bear gained access, deep cleaning of the debris left behind and rebuilding the damaged areas are all services SERVPRO of Reno NW / Truckee / Tahoe Vista can perform to make your home "Like it never even happened."

Mold: A Crash Course

10/19/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation Mold: A Crash Course What are the basics of mold? SERVPRO professionals have you covered!
Mold: A Crash Course

Below are a few quick bullet points for those short on time, but need immediate quick-facts about mold:

  • Mold spores are everywhere, and just because you don't see them growing on any surface, doesn't mean they aren't in the air. And that's not a bad thing! We need mold to make sure things decompose.

According to the CDC, the kinds of places that are at risk of mold growth include: 

  • Antique shops
  • Greenhouses
  • Saunas
  • Farms
  • Mills
  • Construction areas
  • Flower shops
  • Summer cottages
  • Be sure that each spring and fall you check windows, dusty cupboards, and indoor plant soil for mold.
  • If you keep the humidity in your business below 50%, and ventilate the space to the best of your ability, you may be able to prevent mold growth.


  • If you cannot prevent the mold, and it is becoming a problem, call SERVPRO to come out for an estimate. We are mold remediation experts and can handle any mold issue, at any time.

For more information and to keep up with our tips, follow SERVPRO on Twitter: @SERVPRO10274

And, stay in the loop on Facebook with us, too: SERVPRO10274