3 Tips for Hiring Water Damage Restoration Services

There’s nothing worse than coming home to a flooded basement. Whether a floor drain or foundation crack is the culprit, your home is at risk of serious damage if you don’t take action. That’s why finding a professional service to do the cleanup properly is key.

What should you do? Keep reading to learn three tips for hiring water damage restoration services!

1. Ask About the Water Damage Restoration Process

When you’re talking with a water damage restoration service, come prepared with questions. One of your leading questions should be about the process they’ll use to tackle your issue. What are the steps and techniques involved?

Good companies will use modern tools, like moisture meters and industrial fans that can dehumidify the area. They’ll explain what safety equipment they’re using to contain the area. And they’ll discuss the solutions used for cleaning and sanitizing.

Especially if you have young children or pets, you want to feel confident that you’re not exposing them to unhealthy chemicals. A good company should offer total transparency on how they’ll remove the water and handle mold remediation. Additionally, the company should apply preventative treatments to help stop mold growth.

Ask if the company will dispose of contaminated furniture and decor. Also, ask if they will work to determine the source of a leak, especially if it is not obvious. You want to see evidence of a clear plan!

2. Check the Response Speed

When you’re dealing with water damage, time is of the essence! You can’t wait for a water damage restoration service that’s booked for another week. And you can’t assume a disaster only will happen during normal business hours.

Waiting for assistance only enables mold and mildew to take over your property. You need a response team that can answer your call at any time of day. And they should be able to reach your property within an hour.

Look for a company that takes your concerns seriously and dispatches a crew right away. Explain the scope of your problem in detail so they can come prepared.

3. Look at Reviews and Credentials

Finally, be sure to check the credentials and ratings of a prospective water damage restoration company. You don’t want to end up giving your business to a company that lacks certification or insurance coverage.

Insurance coverage keeps you safe from financial problems. If an uninsured worker is hurt on the job, you could be liable for the medical bills. Ask to see evidence of all insurance and credentialing before agreeing to a project.

A company should have certification from the EPA for dealing with lead-based paint safely, too. They also should have restoration certification that complies with current industry standards. This ensures that they will dispose of unsafe materials properly.

Find the Right Water Damage Restoration Services

Quality water damage restoration services are critical when your property is under water. Be sure to hire licensed and insured specialists with the right training. And look for a company that can communicate its process clearly.

When you need help with a water damage problem, contact ServiceFirst Restoration!

Water Damage Restoration Companies: 3 Tips for Choosing the Right One

Did a storm or plumbing issue cause water damage within your home? It happens more often than you might think. In fact, 23.5% of homeowners insurance losses involve water damage and freezing.

It’s important to start looking for water damage restoration companies right away. Otherwise, standing water can cause mold growth. Your family’s health could become compromised if you don’t request immediate services.

Read on to vet your options for restoration companies today.

1. Look for Experience

There are currently over 57,500 damage restoration service companies in the US. Some have worked in the industry longer than others. When choosing a water damage restoration company, prioritize finding teams with experience.

Determine how long each company has operated in Laguna Hills. Consider how often they offer their water damage restoration services.

A team that’s new to the industry is more likely to make mistakes. They might cut corners or use ineffective equipment. If any water lingers within your home, mold and mildew could grow.

An experienced team will have an efficient process in place. They won’t cut corners.

Look into the company’s credentials as well. Confirm they’re licensed, bonded, and insured.

Determine if they have memberships and certifications from the:

  • Community Associations Institute
  • Cleaning and Restoration Association
  • EPA (Lead-Safe)
  • Guild Quality
  • Independent Insurance Agents Brokers Orange County
  • Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification

These teams meet higher standards. They use industry best practices and the latest, state-of-the-art equipment.

2. Review Services

Learn more about each company’s water damage restoration services. For example, they might prioritize:

  • Mold removal
  • Content restoration
  • Water damage repairs

You can learn more about the quality of services each company offers by reading customer reviews. Look for reviews on Yelp, Google Business, and the company’s website. Find a water damage restoration company with a glowing reputation.

These companies will want to maintain their hard-earned reputation by offering top-notch services.

Confirm that each company on your list services your area.

3. Compare Costs

Request estimates from three local water damage restoration companies. Determine when they can start as well. Find a company with immediate response times.

If it takes over two hours for them to arrive, remove them from your list of options.

Requesting multiple estimates will help you compare costs. If one company charges more than the rest, determine why. Don’t choose the cheapest company available.

Determine if they’ll bill your insurance company directly. This process will ensure you don’t have cash tied up in payments while you’re waiting for claim processing.

Vet Water Damage Restoration Companies

Don’t rush to choose between water damage restoration companies. Instead, do your due diligence using these tips. With this guide, you can find a water damage restoration team you can depend on.

With their help, you can restore your home and avoid potential mold growth.

Need immediate water damage restoration services? We’re here for you.

Contact us to schedule restoration services now.

Five Common Water Damage Repair Mistakes Orange County Homeowners Should Avoid

As homeowners in Orange County, California, we live in one of the most beautiful areas of the United States. However, we’re not immune to water damage due to various factors, including natural disasters, pipe bursts, or faulty appliances. Water damage can turn our beautiful homes into problematic structures, leading to expensive repairs and, if not addressed properly, long-term damage.

While it is crucial to act promptly when water damage occurs, it’s also important to do it right. Here are five common water damage repair mistakes homeowners often make, and how you can avoid them.

1. Ignoring the Issue

One of the biggest mistakes homeowners make is ignoring water damage when it first appears. It might be easy to overlook a small leak or damp spot, but even minor water damage can lead to serious problems like mold growth and structural damage if left untreated. It’s crucial to address any signs of water damage as soon as you notice them. The faster you act, the less damage there will be to your property.

2. Not Contacting Professionals Immediately

Water damage isn’t something you should handle alone. While it’s understandable to want to save money, DIY repair attempts often lead to further damage. Professional water damage restoration companies, like Service First Restoration in Orange County, have the necessary equipment and expertise to effectively handle water damage and mitigate its effects.

3. Not Properly Assessing the Damage

Water has a sneaky way of seeping into unseen areas, causing more damage than what is immediately apparent. Homeowners often underestimate the severity of water damage because they don’t see the entire picture. A professional water damage restoration service can help identify hidden damage and ensure all water-damaged areas are addressed.

4. Not Drying Out the Area Thoroughly

When water damage occurs, the affected area must be thoroughly dried out to prevent mold and mildew growth. A common mistake is to assume that because the surface looks dry, the area is completely dry. However, water can seep into walls, flooring, and furniture, remaining hidden and causing damage over time. Professionals use specialized equipment to thoroughly dry and dehumidify affected areas.

5. Neglecting to Contact Your Insurance Company

Many homeowners fear that reporting water damage to their insurance company will increase their premiums. However, failing to report such incidents can lead to denial of coverage for any resulting damage. After a water damage incident, it’s important to contact your insurance company as soon as possible to understand what your policy covers and start the claims process.


Water damage can be a homeowner’s worst nightmare, but it doesn’t have to spell disaster. By avoiding these common mistakes, you can ensure your home is properly repaired and minimize the long-term impact of water damage. Remember, when water damage strikes, prompt, effective action is key, and help is available. Service First Restoration is ready to assist you with professional, efficient, and compassionate water damage restoration services to restore your Orange County home to its former glory.

3 Tips for Hiring a Water Damage Restoration Service

Within a single year, nearly 20% of all homeowners insurance losses were due to water damage or freezing incidents. If you need water damage restoration, it helps to have a plan. Otherwise, you might hire an inexperienced team.

An inexperienced team might fail to do a thorough job, allowing water to linger. With the best water damage restoration services in town, you can keep mold from growing and spreading in your home.

Not sure who to hire? Read on for the tips you need for an effective search today!

1. Check Credentials

Start your search by speaking with other locals. Ask friends, family members, and neighbors if they can recommend a water damage restoration company. If they can, ask about their experience with the restoration team.

Building a list of options based on referrals can help you feel more comfortable with your final choice. Ask each homeowner you speak with if they are satisfied with the services they received.

There are over 55,300 damage restoration services businesses in the US, employing over 113,100 professionals. Referrals will help you narrow down your local options quickly. If you can’t build a list of referrals, begin your search online instead.

Look for customer reviews to confirm you’ve found a trustworthy, reliable company before allowing them into your home.

Next, look into each company’s credentials. Confirm the company has a local, active license. If they’re not licensed to work in your area, keep searching.

Determine if the technicians complete training to receive certification as well. Look for teams with certifications from the Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC). These teams meet higher standards.

Confirm that the company has general liability and worker’s compensation insurance. If there’s an incident, the company won’t hold you responsible.

2. Look for Experience

As you narrow down your options, determine how long each company has offered water damage restoration services. Ask who will arrive to work on your property, too.

Having an experienced team arrive can help give you peace of mind. An experienced team won’t make costly mistakes. Instead, they’ll do a thorough job of removing all moisture from your property.

An experienced team will have an easier time answering your questions.

3. Get Quotes

Gather quotes from at least three local businesses to compare their pricing. Compare prices and services to make sure you’re receiving a fair price.

Ask each company if they have a guarantee, too. What if you still notice wet spots or mold growth after they leave? Confirm the company will return to fix the problem and ensure you’re satisfied with their services.

Find the Best Water Damage Restoration Service Today

Don’t rush when requesting water damage restoration services. Instead, make sure an experienced, qualified team is on the job. With their help, you can restore your home to its original condition without unnecessary stress.

Hire an experienced restoration team today.

Need help right away? Learn more about our water damage restoration services before scheduling an inspection!

Why You Should Never Ignore the Early Signs of Mold at Home

Did you know that breathing in too much mold can cause a severe infection that could target your lungs? Mold can also cause a sore throat, skin rash, or stuffy throat in small amounts.

Immune-compromised individuals should be extra careful not to get a chronic lung disease. Knowing the signs of mold is essential to ensure that you do not risk your health.

Here is everything you need to know about the early signs of mold to learn what not to ignore.

Strange Smells

One of the earliest signs of a mold infestation is a stale and musty smell wafting through your home. The scent will start as a tiny hint, but it intensifies and becomes much more noticeable over time.

This is because mold expels microbial volatile organic compounds into the air. This includes pungent chemicals like carboxylic acids, terpenes, and aldehydes. When mixed together, they can create the most unpleasant odor that can be damp and stale.

More Allergies

One of mold’s most significant health risks is that it can trigger many allergies. This is because mold spores are airborne irritants.

They can worsen allergy symptoms like shortness of breath, red eyes, sneezing, nasal congestion, and wheezing.

If you are indoors and notice your symptoms worsening, you may need to tackle a mold problem. Symptoms may also worsen in areas of the property, such as nearby air vents, closets, attics, and bathrooms.

Moisture Problems

Do you feel a lot more humidity in your house lately? This is another sign of a mold problem. This is because mold spores that are typically harmless and inactive in the air will not grow unless there is moisture to help them.

They need wet, damp, and humid conditions to produce more. So, if you have had a water leak recently or have a lot of moisture coming from somewhere, it is a sign that the mold may already be thriving in your home.

It also helps to look at your leaky pipes, kitchens, basements, and condensation from your HVAC system. These are notorious for getting wet or building up moisture.

Dark Stains

The mold that grows on your ceilings and walls will look like a series of dark-colored patches. This is a discoloration that can appear in different colors and shades.

However, black and brown patches are mostly the ones you see. It is not impossible to see yellow, blue, and grey ones. Analyzing the texture is the best way to know if the stain is mold growth.

Usually, mold will appear slimy and fuzzy. This is when you need to hire mold removal services.

Then you can easily smear it. Otherwise, it would help if you tried to dab the spot with diluted bleach. The stain should light up after a few minutes if you have a mold problem.

Dealing With Early Signs of Mold

Now that you know the early signs of mold to look for, it is time to start examining your home for dark patches or areas with a lot of moisture that smell funky.

If you suspect a mold problem, it is always best to call professionals instead of tackling it yourself. Contact us today so we can help protect your health.

5 Water Damage Restoration Errors and How to Avoid Them

Did you know approximately 7.2 million Americans get sick every year from waterborne diseases? Unfortunately, damage caused by water issues such as pipe leaks or a storm flood can cause severe harm to your home as well as your health. In these scenarios, you’ll need to take rapid action to stop the damage and restore your property to its original condition.

But what are the typical water damage restoration errors that you should avoid? If you make mistakes during the clearing-up process, you could leave your home vulnerable. While it can be hard work to restore a property after it suffers water damage, it is possible if you follow some professional tips.

Keep reading to learn more.

1. Not Accurately Assessing the Damage Before

Before you rush in and try to clean up water damage, you need to make a thorough assessment. For example, if you have wet walls, you’ll want to be sure any electrical wires or components behind the walls aren’t wet. It’s also important to find the cause of the water damage as soon as possible so you can prevent the issue from becoming worse.

2. Taking Too Long to Act

While you shouldn’t rush, it’s critical to act promptly to reduce the amount of damage being caused and to keep the repair costs down. The water damage restoration process can become expensive, and responding quickly can make a huge difference to the final bill.

3. Not Following Health and Safety Procedures

It can be dangerous to work in an environment where there is excess water. If there is damage to electrical circuits, this can put you at risk of electrocution. Or there could be mold in the area that might cause health problems.

This is why it can be best to work with a professional water damage restoration service that will follow the correct health and safety procedures.

4. Ineffective Equipment Can Lead To Further Water Damage Restoration Errors

Using the wrong water damage restoration equipment can cause even more damage to your home. Tools that are not up to the task may only remove some of the water in your property, allowing the remaining water to continue to cause harm. When you hire our water damage restoration services, you can be assured we will use state-of-the-art equipment.

5. Not Properly Documenting the Restoration Costs

Your insurance company will send out an assessor to inspect the damage. However, you should also record the water damage cleanup costs to support your claim. In addition, it’s crucial to take pictures of any damage in case there is a dispute with your insurer at a later date.

Contact Service First Restoration, Inc.

It’s vital to take immediate action if there are any signs of water damage in your home. While you can personally take steps to protect your property and your health, you may prefer to hire industry specialists to undertake this important task.

At Service First Restoration, Inc., our skilled technicians can be at your property within 60 minutes. We offer a 24/7, 365 days per year service, and take pride in achieving outstanding results at cost-effective prices.

For all your water damage restoration needs, contact our professional team today.

5 Benefits of Hiring Water Damage Restoration Services

Projections show that the global disaster restoration services market will reach $98.9 billion by 2031.

Disaster restoration covers a range of things that can damage property, and one of the most prevalent types is water damage. It can occur in all kinds of properties in any area, and without proper water damage restoration, all kinds of problems can occur.

For 5 of the main benefits of hiring professional water damage restoration services, keep reading.

1. Quick Water Damage Restoration

Water damage can make homes unlivable, and commercial properties unusable. Hiring professional restoration services will help get things back to normal as soon as possible. This includes removing water, drying the area, full disinfection, and repair work.

If water damage is left, it can get worse with time. The faster things are dealt with, the better. Service First is available 24/7 and will respond immediately to help you deal with any problems.

2. Safety

One of the main issues that can come from water damage is mold growth. There are various types, and they can grow almost anywhere. These vary in terms of how bad they are, but any mold can be harmful to people’s health.

Service First will ensure all mold is completely eradicated. After this, our mold remediation services will help prevent future mold growth.

3. Reduced Costs

The extent of water damage can vary greatly, and as such, so can the cost. In some cases, you could be looking at huge amounts of damage in just a few hours. Calling in professionals as soon as possible could help you save a lot of money.

You may have some drywall where a stain has appeared, which can simply be sanded and painted over. If left for too long, however, you may end up having to remove the entire section of the wall. Acting fast and getting things done professionally is the best way to minimize the cost of water damage to your property.

4. Professional Advice

It can be difficult to assess the severity of water damage. Things like walls, carpets, furniture, etc. may be salvageable, or they may be too damaged.

A professional will be able to give you a good idea of what can be saved, and what can’t. This will stop you from throwing out things that are still good, or holding on to items that are too far gone.

5. Help With Insurance Claims

Many people have never dealt with insurance claims before, and they can be quite complicated. Getting everything done right isn’t always easy, and it can be quite stressful after suffering damage to your property.

Service First has over 75 years of experience, and in that time, we’ve dealt with all kinds of insurance claims. Our team can help you through the process to make sure everything is done right.

Professional Water Damage Restoration

Water damage can be devastating, and it’s important to act fast when it happens. Service Fist provides professional water damage restoration services throughout Orange County.

To find out more about our services, click here to contact us today.

How To Choose the Best Water Damage Repair Company

A home is not a home when it smells moldy and is damp. If you have a water-damaged home and need water damage repair, you need to seek a reliable company.

Besides doing a good job and offering reasonable prices, a good water damage repair company should be honest. You should be able to trust them as they will have access to your house. A company that offers 24/7 damage assessment services will always come in handy when you get a middle-of-the-night plumbing disaster.

Not sure how to pick the right water damage restoration service? Here are some tips for finding the best company for your project.

How Does Water Damage Happen?

Water damage in your home can happen in several different ways. These occurrences may come from a leaky roof that causes water to get in areas it should. Or the problem may even be caused by a burst pipe.

This type of damage can happen in several different ways. Small leaks over time may be doing bigger harm to your home than you recognize. This is the reason that professionals who know how to handle and detect water leaks are an asset.

Be sure to have these leaks assessed by a professional who knows what to look for within your home.

Customer Reviews Are an Asset

Check out the company before you hire them. Look into the past reviews that the company has had from those prior customers. Reviews give you an in-depth look into if a company has done work well in the past.

Nowadays with the internet, we have the ability to fully check out the way a company operates from the comfort of our own homes. Don’t be afraid to ask the opinions of those who have used the company prior to you. Make sure you’re comfortable with the company you chose.

Always Request a Plan

You should be able to discuss the aspects of cleanup with your professionals. A professional should take the time to show you what they will be doing to restore the damage that has been done to your home.

When it comes to local repairs discuss all options with the company in question. Make sure that their cleanup plan doesn’t further the damage that has been done to your home.

Always make sure that you are comfortable with the quality of work the company does with other clients.

A Water Damage Repair Company Can Be a Difficult Decision

There are many factors that play into choosing the right company for your water damage repair. When it comes down to it, the most important part about choosing a company is being confident in your decision. Be sure you choose the company that works best for your situation and budget.

For all other injuries when it comes to water damage and flood damage, we have you covered. Reach out to us at any time for further assistance with all of your water damage problems.

What to Do After a Flood: A Guide for Homeowners

Did you know that just 1 inch of water in a home flooding can lead to $23,635 worth of damage? Acting quickly can make repairing and cleaning after a flood less costly.

But, how do you know what to do after a flood?

In this article, we discuss how to handle residential flooding step-by-step. From considering safety to finding professional water damage restoration, learn everything you need to know.

Put Safety First After Home Flooding

Before worrying about what to do after a flood, make sure you put safety first. Wear appropriate safety gear before going back into your house to prevent exposure to harmful substances.

Check for signs of major damage, such as a cracked foundation. If you’re unsure whether your home is safe to enter, wait until you can talk to a professional at your utility company.

Get Your Home Dry

Once it’s safe to enter, your next step after a home flooding is to get your home dry. Start by having any remaining standing water pumped out. Then, work on drying the interior of your house using fans and dehumidifiers.

Document and Report Damage

It’s important to remove all damaged belongings before they can grow mold and pose a risk to your health. However, you need to document all damaged property and belongings before doing so.

This is especially important for reporting an insurance claim for flood damage. However, it’s also helpful to be aware of the belongings you need to replace.

Save What You Can

Certain belongings can’t be saved after residential floodings, like food, upholstered furniture, and bedding. However, try to save what you can still use. Even some sensitive items may be worth saving if minimally damaged.

Cleaning After a Flood

Cleaning after a flood helps minimize additional damage from bacteria and mold growth. Disinfectants and odor removers are the best tools for this step. Thorough cleaning is essential before you start working on repairs.

Water Damage Restoration

If your home isn’t well-cleaned after flooding, it can affect water damage restoration. It can also end up costing more in repairs in the long run. Hiring a professional to do the repairs cuts down costs and minimizes risk.

Determine Flooding Causes

Flooding causes may seem obvious such as an over-filled bathtub or a storm flood, but make sure you understand what led to them. For example, maybe your tub drain needs to be cleared.

Take Preventive Steps

Cleaning after a flood is a lot of work, but preventing another one is even more important. When considering what to do after a flood, many homeowners overlook the importance of preventive steps.

Installing a sump pump or applying special waterproof coatings helps prevent future flooding. You should also learn about the flood level in your area and work to protect your home during inclement weather.

Know What to Do After a Flood

Knowing what to do after a flood not only gives you comfort during a stressful time but can also minimize the impact of the damage. Acting quickly can save some of your precious belongings and your budget.

Don’t delay professional flood damage restoration, and contact us today.

5 Tips on How to Detect a Water Leak in Your Home

Did you know that an average household with a water leak will waste nearly 10,000 gallons of water annually?

As well as wasting water and costing you money, an undetected leak can cause significant damage to your home. If you don’t know how to detect a water leak, you can take some simple steps to help you decide when to call a plumber.

Continue reading for five tips for finding a water leak.

1. Check Your Water Meter

Begin by taking a look at your water meter. It’s the best place to start if you think you have a water leak in your home.

Ensure all the water faucets in your house are off, not forgetting the dishwasher and the washing machine. Check the water meter and note down the number. Wait one hour and check the water meter again. If the number has changed, you have a leak somewhere in your home.

2. Take a Closer Look at Your Bill

Comparing your recent water bills can give you a good idea about any potential leak. The bill should remain in a similar range, and any significant unexplained increase is a strong clue to a water leak.

You can also take a closer look at your water usage. Each person should account for approximately 3000 gallons of water each month in a household.

Call in a professional leak detection service if you think you have a water leak but don’t know where it may be.

3. Investigate the Usual Suspects

If the numbers point to a water leak, take a closer look at appliances and fixtures. Check the cabinets under all your sinks and make sure they’re dry. And search for puddles at the bases of toilets, showers, dishwashers, washing machines, and the water heater.

Call a plumber if you find a leak, and take care to turn off the water supply to that appliance or fixture.

4. Put Food Coloring in the Toilet

Toilet flushing accounts for nearly 30% of an average home’s water consumption, and it’s a prime spot for interior leaking. You can check if there’s a leak with a simple test.

Add a few drops of food coloring to all the toilet tanks in your home and wait 10 minutes. If color appears in your bowl, you have a leak.

5. Keep an Eye Out for Leaking Clues

You should be regularly checking your home for any signs of a leak. Catching it early can save you thousands of dollars in repairs.

Wall discoloration and bulging wallpaper are major clues of a water leak inside the wall. Check cabinets under basins for mold and musty smells. And any oxidation or discoloration of pipes could be a sign of a slow leak.

How to Detect a Water Leak Made Easy

There you have it. Now you know how to detect a water leak in your home quickly so you know when to call in professional help.

Did you find this advice about finding a water leak helpful? We’re happy to help, so give us a call if you need further assistance.