Wednesday, September 28, 2011

How to Practice Fire Safety in the Home

Practice fire safety in your home, because there's no worse time to realize that your fire extinguisher is on the fritz than during an actual fire.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Hazards Of Water Damage

Water damage is an annoyance that no one likes to deal with. Most people assume the problem is gone when the water is gone, however this can be just the beginning of water damage hazards. The introduction of water to a building can lead to both health risks as well as structural damage to a building. If an area of a home or business is exposed to moisture it is important to call a professional to look for signs of mold and mildew growth as well as potential structural damage.

Mold and Mildew

Mold and mildew can begin to grow and expand rapidly in areas that have been exposed to water. Whether it is a flood, a small leak, or even just a damp area such as a basement, mold and mildew can begin to take root in your home or building. Besides looking disgusting mold can pose serious health risks to people exposed to the area. Even if the mold is not physically touched it can still be very harmful to an individual. This is because mold spores spread and travel through the air, which in return is exposed to skin and is taken into the body through the process of breathing. Potential hazards of coming into contact with mold and mildew include skin irritation, headache, fatigue, allergic reaction, asthma, bleeding lungs, and has been linked to some forms of cancer. These health hazards can be immediate within a person or can set in over time.

In many cases businesses, schools and homes have to be evacuated until mold removal is taken care of because of health risks liabilities. Don't let your building be a victim of mold and mildew invasion. If you feel your building may be at risk of mold growth, or if your building already has mold growth it is important to call a professional to take care of it as soon as possible.

Structural Damage

Hazards of water invasion can also lead to structural damages of a building. Water and moisture causes wood to expand and warp over time, which in turn causes weakening of the building's foundation. Exposure to water can also cause wood to rot and decay which is a significant problem when considering the stability of a building. Signs of these problems may include squeaky floors, soft wood, exposure of nails in between boards and warped boards. Leaving these problems unresolved can lead to eventual collapse and destruction of a building. It is important to notice these hazards early on so that they can be fixed before problems become more dangerous and more costly.

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Thursday, September 22, 2011

Get Out Alive - Surviving An Electrical Fire

Tips on how to prevent an electrical fire in your home and steps to take if an electrical fire occurs.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Why Air Duct Cleaning Is Necessary

Why is air duct cleaning necessary? Today's modern houses are remarkably energy efficient compared to homes built just twenty years ago. They take less energy to heat in the winter, and to cool in the summer. This degree of thriftiness is achieved in part by making them air-tight. But, this air-tight and energy-efficient construction can bring with it a problem - dirty household air.
Minimal leakage in or out is great for energy efficiency, but this also means that the same air must be continually recirculated throughout the home, with minimal or no replacement fresh air sources. Air in your house that is heated or cooled is constantly circulated through the ducting. Allergens including dust particles, smoke, mold particles, pet hair and dander and dandruff, pollen and oil particles from cooking also are transferred throughout the house - by way of your ducting.
Over time, your air ducts can accumulate layers of this debris, and can regularly deliver these pollutants to every room in your home. That is why you need to have your heating and cooling systems cleaned on a regular basis.
Here are some facts that you should know about air duct cleaning.
Remove Airborne Contaminants
Professional duct cleaning on a regular basis can remove airborne contaminants like bacteria, mold spores, fungus, pollen and pet dander. Many of these contaminants contribute to allergies and asthma problems. Does anyone in your home have allergies or asthma symptoms? If so, their symptoms may be made worse by dirty air in your home.
Thorough air duct cleaning not only cleans the insides of your ducting, it can remove moisture too. Moisture in your air handling systems can make them an ideal breeding ground for bacteria, mold and fungi, all of which have been proven to cause diseases in the respiratory system.
Keep Your Home Clean
Regular professional air duct cleaning helps to keep your home clean. It also helps to maintain your health, as you're not constantly breathing in these recirculated pollutants. If you already have allergies, keeping your home's air clean can reduce the severity of allergic reactions that you or your family experience.
Stay Healthy
Good health is the primary benefit of keeping your air ducts clean. According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), typical indoor air inside the home often contains more than 70 times more pollutants than outdoor air.
Considering the enormous amount of dust and pollution that makes its way into your home, and stays there due to super-efficient construction techniques, keeping your heating and air conditioning systems clean is a must.
Watch Out For Unqualified Duct Cleaning Companies
There are many companies with super-low rates and inferior equipment that will leave you with dirty ducts after a "blow and go" superficial cleaning. Always get at least two quotes from two different companies and ask if they use the latest technologies and equipment. These tips will help you choose a highly qualified and experienced service provider duct cleaning.
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Thursday, September 15, 2011

Preventing Mold Problems In Your Home

Mold is a very costly problem to have in your home. For many it can be thousands of dollars to properly remove a mold problem depending on what type it is. It is a toxic and can make you extremely sick if you are living in a home with it. The best thing you can do before having a huge problem is to prevent it from ever happening. Find out what you can do that will help you prevent mold problems in your house.
What is it that causes most mold problems in a home?
Most mold problems are caused by having a humidity problem. This means that the home is just a bit too humid helping the mold grow faster. This is something that need to be controlled.
For around thirty dollars you can buy a humidity sensor. You just need one. Test out the rooms in your home to see what the humidity is of each of them. When you find rooms with higher than 50% humidity, something needs to be done.
Use a dehumidifier in rooms with this high humidity. Keep them running so that there will be less moisture in the air. This will help prevent mold from growing as easily.
You also need to fix any pipes in your home that are leaking and causing problems. This can cause moisture as it leaks out and gets into the air. Stop it from happening by keeping things in working order.
Look for holes that might be in your roof. This is a great spot for mold to grow as that moisture seeps into your walls.
Seal up your basement better. If your basement is flooding after heavy rains, something needs to be done else mold problems are likely in the future.
Be sure to get your air ducts cleaned. This can be a place where mold grows for years without you knowing it. You will be breathing it in all the time and it's very easy for it to spread.
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Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Fire Waiting To Happen - Why Dryers Are A Major Risk And What To Do To Save Your House And Family

Dryer fires are almost always caused by a build up of lint. Even though the lint screen is cleared away a large amount of lint gets pushed into the exhaust duct behind the dryer. The dangerous problem of lint build up occurs within this ductwork.
Not until the late 1980s into the 1990s did appliance retailers make a big push to educate the consumer of the risks of ductwork and fires. Until that time a large number of homes, apartment complexes and town homes relied on the use of the white vinyl flexible corrugated ducting. The silver mylar "foil" duct was a better choice due to its slightly better ability to withstand heat.
Today that vinyl and mylar duct is no longer universally sold in home improvement store, hardware stores or appliance retailers. If a consumer is looking to replace an existing exhaust duct, these two exhaust ducts should not be used. Instead a semi-rigid or solid metal ductwork should be used.
There are several reasons why the vinyl and "foil" ducts should never be used. As moisture from the wet clothing is vented out through the exhaust, the moisture will begin to saturate the lint that has become trapped in the ridges. As the lint becomes heavier from being wet, the piping will sag creating a low spot. From continue use of the dryer, more and more lint will accumulate at this low point thereby greatly restricting or blocking the entire air flow.
The restricted airflow is what then causes a great increase in the temperature of the clothing and drying cycle. Due to this excessive temperature increase, the lint will now act as a fuel source which will ignite. Semi-rigid and straight metal piping has reduced the risk of a fire due to the above scenario. There is still a risk, though. Important warning signs are if the clothing is taking longer and longer to dry or the temperature of the dryer and clothing being dried has become hotter.
The key to eliminating a dryer fire is to periodically have the duct work cleaned professionally. Should the dryer exhaust have a straight run of only a foot or so, a visual inspection should be feasible. The catch is that most ducts do not make a short straight run to the exterior of the building. The more angles and bends that the exhaust needs to follow, increases the opportunity for lint to become trapped. A home owner may be able to perform the arduous task of moving the dryer and snaking a wet-dry vacuum hose in the ductwork, however, most household vacuums do not possess the power to clear a long run of pipe or a densely packed exhaust duct.
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Sunday, September 11, 2011

9/11 - 10th Anniversary - Tribute

September 11, 2001, A day we will never forget. 

 Thanks to all firefighters, police, average citizens, rescue parties/teams/organizations who risked their lives to save others on this tragic day. 

 "You can break the foundation of a building, but you can't break the foundation of our freedom!"

Monday, September 5, 2011

3 Signs You Need A Mold Expert

In buildings there are some common signs of the presence of mold. A mold expert can help determine the severity and hazards of the mold growth.

 When searching for a mold remediation company choose the most trusted name in disaster restoration, Servpro of Fairfield. We are Certified in Mold Remediation by the IICRC and the IAQA. We can help you if you have any kind of mold problem, from small little isolated areas of mold, to whole houses that are contaminated. We can also help you to discover why you are having a mold problem, if the problem isn't evident. Whatever your mold problem, we can help. 
(707) 207-0122

Friday, September 2, 2011

Fire & Smoke Damage Restoration

Behavior of Smoke
A fire loss can result in complex damages because of the unique behavior of smoke. A trained professional should survey the loss site to determine the extent to which fire, smoke, heat, and moisture impacted building materials and contents.
Experienced fire restoration professionals know that smoke can penetrate within cavities of the structure, causing hidden damage and odor. Their knowledge of building systems helps them investigate how far smoke damage may have spread.
Some things you may not know about smoke:
  • Hot smoke migrates to cooler areas and upper levels of a structure.
  • Smoke flows around plumbing systems, using holes around pipes to go from floor to floor.
  • The type of smoke may greatly affect the restoration process.

Types of Smoke

Once at a fire scene, a SERVPRO Franchise Professional will test the soot to determine which type of smoke damage occurred. Cleaning procedures will be based on the information identified during pretesting.
Types of soot include:
  • Wet Smoke Residues - Result from smoldering fires with low heat. Residues are sticky, smeary and with pungent odors.  Smoke webs can be difficult to clean.
  • Dry Smoke Residues - Result from fast burning fires at high temperatures. Residues are often dry, powdery, small, nonsmeary smoke particles.
  • Protein Residues - Virtually invisible residues that discolor paints and varnishes.  Extreme pungent odor.
  • Fuel Oil Soot - Furnace puff backs distribute fuel oil soot.
  • Other Types of Residues - Tear gas, fingerprint powder, and fire extinguisher residues also need cleanup.
Inspection and Pretesting
The SERVPRO Franchise Professional pretests while inspecting the property to determine the damages and the scope of needed cleaning, restoration, and repairs.
  • The full extent of the damage. How many materials are affected by smoke or fire? What is the proper method for cleaning? Will your personal belongings need to be relocated while your house is restored? These are just a few of the decisions that must be made.
  • Unaffected areas - It can be vital to protect areas that were not affected by soot and odor before the damage spreads to these areas. It will save you money!
  • What materials can be restored and what materials must be replaced. Are the smoke residues cleanable? Who is completing the inventory of items that are damaged beyond repair? Pretesting is vital. A complete inventory is invaluable! How long will the cleanup take? We'll let you know what to expect.
  • The most effective cleaning methods. What work procedures will restore the damaged materials?
Pretesting also allows the SERVPRO Franchise Professional to focus on saving precious items or keepsakes for you.
Once the mitigation begins, the Franchise Professional will keep you informed and answer your questions, all while working to help make the fire damage “Like it never even happened.”