Sunday, January 29, 2017

Does Your Home Really Need Air Duct Cleaning?


Air duct cleaning may not be the first thing that you think about when it comes to cleaning and maintaining your home, but the potential benefits of this service mean that it perhaps should be. The services of a professional cleaning company can make a tremendous difference in the efficiency and health of your home, providing improved quality of life for all who live there. When considering whether you should have your ducts cleaned it can be easy to question whether your home would truly benefit from such services. They can help to review the answers to some of the most commonly asked questions regarding duct cleaning.

What is the Purpose of Air Duct Cleaning?

Startling studies have indicated that the air inside a home can be as much as five times more polluted than the air outside. You may think that the air filters in your air system are enough to protect you from this pollution, but the reality is these disposable filters are only effective at removing approximately 10 percent of the pollutants and contaminants that move through it. The rest of these contaminants move into the air system, then circulate through the home and settling onto the surfaces of the floor and furniture. While these surfaces can be easily cleaned, the problem lies in the contaminants that settle into the duct system. When this happens, traces of these contaminants will be continuously reintroduced into the air and can be breathed in by those in the home.

Can Mold Grow in the Ducts?

When contaminants and debris are introduced into your duct system, they can become an ideal food source for a variety of organic contamination. The dark and often humid environment of the duct system is perfect for the growth of mold, bacteria, fungi and viruses. As new contamination including dead skin cells, pet dander and moisture are introduced into the air duct system, these can thrive. Pieces of these contaminants can then become part of the air and lead to a variety of respiratory symptoms.

How Are Ducts Cleaned?

Duct cleaning professionals will use a variety of specialized tools and techniques to thoroughly clean and protect your air duct system. It is crucial that all components of your heating and cooling unit and the ducts are thoroughly cleaned in order to prevent lingering contamination. The cleaning generally begins with a careful examination to determine the extent of the contamination and any areas of the heating cooling unit or duct system that are not in high functioning condition. The technician will then use special tools to loosen the buildup of debris and high-powered vacuums to remove this buildup. The components will then be thoroughly cleaned and potentially protected with the use of a sanitizing solution.

How Often Do Ducts Need to be Cleaned?

After your heating and cooling unit an air duct system has been thoroughly cleaned by an air duct cleaning professional, as long as you maintain it properly, you will not need to have the system cleaned again for between three and seven years. It is important that you continue to maintain the system by having it checked and repaired once or twice a year.


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Thursday, January 26, 2017

SERVPRO® Commercial: Fire


We’re there the moment you need us to help make fire damage “Like it never even happened.”

Monday, January 23, 2017

Smoke Damage Cleanup - A Daunting Task Without Professional Help


Smoke damage cleanup can be a harder task than most people realize. Unless you have had a fire in your home before, you may not realize the time and effort that smoke clean up actually takes. We all know that when we go camping and sit next to a camp fire everything we own smells like smoke. The tent will trap that smoke smell and a year later you unwrap the tent and it smells even stronger than it did a year ago. Now think about having that camp fire in your house. Everything the smoke touches will hold the smell, and the sooner it is properly cleaned the better.

The second problem with smoke damage cleanup is the water that is used to put out the fire. So on top of having smoke penetrate every fiber and material in your home, you also have water damage to deal with. It's like having two disasters hit at once. When it first happens the problem seems overwhelming. The first thing you have to do is dry out the water, to prevent further damage from water and mold. So as soon as you are allowed back in the home safely, think of drying out the home as fast as possible. If it's warm out opening the windows may bring in too much heat and cause humidity so a dehumidifier will be the best option. If it is cool out, getting the windows open and air flow to the damp areas would help dry them out fast. To dry a home efficiently, it is highly recommended to enlist a professional service; most cleanup specialists are available 24 hours a day to get the process started as soon as possible.

Smoke damage cleanup professionals are in the business to deal with this damage from the very beginning. They also keep up on the latest tools and techniques to get the job done correctly and efficiently. A cleanup professional will also have experience dealing with the insurance claims and get you the most money back to help with expenses. We all know that the longer it takes to get your life and home back to normal the more damage to the sanity, so act fast and get professional help right away.


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Friday, January 20, 2017

SERVPRO® Commercial: Water


We’re there the moment you need us to help make water damage “Like it never even happened.”

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Fire and Water Restoration Services - Summary of Services by a Professional Restoration Company


Fire and water damage can happen for a variety of reasons. It can be a simple grease fire or an overflowing sink that can cause damage or it can be something more serious such as fire caused by lightning or water damage caused by flooding. Unless the fire or water damage was negligible, it is generally recommended that property owners seek the professional help of a fire and water restoration contractor.

Here is a summary of the typical services that will be offered by a fire and water restoration contractor.

Restoration services for damage caused by fire

  • Smoke and soot removal - Smoke from a fire can linger for a very long time unless it is professionally removed. Fire and water restoration companies will use special deodorizers and ozone to completely remove smoke and its odor. Different materials in the house have different levels of smoke absorption and only an expert restoration company will know how to treat each material.
  • Structural repair - Some homeowners will be surprised to know that a very large part of the building structure can be restored although it might look hopeless to the home owner. A professional fire and water restoration company will help you save a lot of money with restorations instead of destruction and rebuilding which can result in very high expenses.
  • Damage to the floor - Often times, the floor is often the first to be damaged in a fire. A fire and water restoration contractor will be able to tell you if the floor in your house or property is salvageable with restoration work or if it will have to be replaced.

Restoration services for damage caused by water

  • Water damage is the worst type of damage as it can lead to structural weakness, bacterial infections, toxic mold growth and many other problems that are best tackled by a professional restoration company. A fire and water restoration contractor will use various types of equipment such as dehumidifiers, blowers, truck mounted and portable water extraction units, moisture meters and hygrometers in their restoration process. This is definitely not something that can be managed by homeowners who will not have access to this costly and effective equipment.
  • Different materials in the house require different types of drying as they all absorb moisture differently. A a fire and water restoration company will use the right equipment such as a dehumidifier or a blower for different types of materials in an effort to dry the property in the most efficient manner.
  • Water follows the path of least resistance. In other words, it will seep into porous materials as and when it comes in contact with them. A fire and water restoration company will quickly be able to assess the water damage in your house and will advice you on which parts of the house are restorable and which parts cannot be salvaged and will have to replace. This is not common knowledge and you could stand to lose a lot if you didn't know how to prioritize your restoration efforts if you are doing it on your own.

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Saturday, January 14, 2017

What You Need to Know About Mold Remediation and Removal


A recent report on housing safety found that mold was one of the most common health hazards in American homes. This national study revealed that about twenty percent of abodes have exterior and interior water leaks that result in mold growth. Because this growth often occurs in out-of-the-way areas, such as attics, cellars, and crawl spaces, homeowners are often unaware of its presence until it becomes an infestation that requires mold remediation.

How Long Does It Take?

Normally innocuous, mold spores are all around us. These microscopic reproductive units float around searching for a way to multiply. Their best chance to achieve that end is to find a moist environment. That's why minor problems often occur in bathrooms. But when we're talking about major infestations, spores need a water source that provides them with the moisture they need to grow into colonies. A roof or plumbing leak in a humid indoor environment, such as an attic during the summertime, does exactly that.

When the conditions are right, spores can spread through a property in as little as 48-72 hours. These infestations not only cause serious damage to the structure, but they can also cause health problems for people with respiratory disorders like asthma. Even those who suffer from seasonal allergies may experience symptoms because of the increased amount of irritants in the air. At this point, mold remediation is often the only option.

Remediation Vs. Removal

Some restoration companies mistakenly claim that they can remove all of the spores in an affected home or business. But because spores are microscopic and are virtually everywhere, this is impossible. What they actually mean is that they will remove colonies and infestations that are responsible for damage to the structure and possible health problems. But removing these irritants is only one step in the remediation process, the goal of which is to return mold levels to normal, healthy levels. Here are the steps remediation specialists typically take to achieve that end:

- Fix the water problem. This helps prevent further growth.

- Inspect and assess the damage. This helps experts determine the proper course of action.

- Isolate the contaminated area. A crucial step that may prevent the spread of spores, it often involves covering all windows, doors, and other openings with a polyethylene sheeting.

- Air filtration. This process helps remove excess spores from the contaminated area.

- Remove materials. All wet, mold-damaged porous materials must be taken out.

- Clean contents. All non-porous wood surfaces and materials must be thoroughly cleaned with specialized cleaning solutions.

- Drying the area. Fans and dehumidifiers are used to remove excess moisture from the contaminated area.

- Straightening up. All objects and materials that were moved are replaced.

Although experts may use different tools and procedures, almost all of them follow those basic steps during the mold remediation process. Depending on the damage, the process typically takes between three and seven days. In most cases, an experienced team of technicians can return your home or business to its pre-infestation condition.


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Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Disaster Cleanup Services


Every year millions of households are affected by disasters, natural and otherwise causing billions of dollars in damages. It is vital to understand all of the types of disasters that can occur to a residence and the dangers associated with each. Furthermore it is extremely important to the homeowners and their families that these damages be properly restored before occupation of the residence continues. This article will outline some common household disasters and health risks associated with the damages from those disasters. Finally this piece will explain how to choose the best damage restoration specialist for homeowners and their families to ensure health risks are eliminated and the structural integrity of the home is maintained.

Sewage backup is unfortunately fairly common and is also one of the most dangerous disasters which can occur within a home. Sewage, by definition, is any material originating beyond the trap. Any liquid or material backing up from this region should be considered hazardous whether it comes up through a floor drain or other locations in the house such as a toilet. Sewage contains both organic and inorganic contaminants such as wastes breeding Salmonella, E. Coli, toxic basic and acidic drain cleaners and other chemicals which can cause serious heath issues and life threatening illness. Aside from the solid contaminants sewage can produce methane or hydrogen sulfide gases which can be a fire hazard as well as ammonia and other potentially toxic gases. Due to the health risks involved it is important that when a substantial backup is discovered that a professional be called to assess the situation because often times the backup can travel under the home and go unnoticed. Sewage backup if untreated can potentially damage a structure, rotting out the foundation and in serious cases can put the structure at risk of collapse. Failure to properly restore sewage damage, among other health risks can lead to another dangerous household disaster, mold.

There are a variety of mold species that can come to colonize a home which introduce a wide range health risks to the occupants. Some toxic strains include Alternaria, Chaetomium, Cladosporium, Mucor and several others. These toxic molds have been linked to a variety of short term effects such as hives, trouble breathing, headaches, general fatigue and others. Long term effects of mold exposure can be much more severe. Long term mold exposure has been linked to respiratory infections, some cancers, heart problems, nervous system problems and other serious risks. There are many disasters that can strike a household which make it more vulnerable to toxic mold growth such as flooding and foundation cracks and leaks caused by earthquakes, frost wedging or other forms of erosion. There are other factors which can lead to mold growth such as high humidity and poor air circulation. Is is important to call an expert as soon as mold growth is discovered because lab tests are necessary to determine if there is a serious threat present and the person called to restore a house can make all the difference in this situation.

There are a few ways to tell if the contractor called is knowledgeable and skilled enough to eliminate the health risks brought on by mold growth, flooding or sewage backup. Researching a business' history is one way to determine if those called upon are up to the job. Is is important that the person or associated company be experienced in the specific field disaster restoration. Inexperience can lead to improper restoration which can potentially lead to illness or if some damages go unnoticed much greater future costs for a proper restoration. Possibly the best way to verify that the technician is an authority on restoration and mold remediation is look for certification. There are many national certifications which ensure that technicians are trained to deal with all of the risks involved in restorations such as The Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) and the very stringent Antimicrobial Mold Remediation Technician (AMRT) Certification. Disasters are most always unexpected and so are health issues or structural collapses that can result from improper damage restoration. Homeowners can prevent the latter two scenarios by calling on certified restoration technicians to protect their homes and families.

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Sunday, January 8, 2017

SERVPRO Faster



From residential to commercial, from large loss to emergency response, whenever damage strikes call on the clean up team that's faster to any size disaster.

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Smoke Damage: Why Should You Use a Professional for Cleanup?


One of the most important things that you can do after a fire is to act quickly. Because smoke and fire damage can become worse over time, it is paramount that you start the assessment and cleaning process as fast as possible. By doing so, you can avoid much long-term damage and loss of property.

A fire is one of the most catastrophic events that could happen to your home. It strikes when you least expect it, and make your home uninhabitable until you are able to repair and restore the damage that it has done. Fire can leave behind soot and smoke odor, which can do even more damage after the fact, if not properly dealt with. While you may be tempted to begin the restoration process yourself, there are a few things that you consider before making this decision. In most cases, it is more than worth it to employ a professional restoration company to clean up after your fire and smoke damage.

Whenever you are dealing with fire damage, speed is of the utmost importance. Not only do you want to minimize the long-lasting effects that soot and smoke can have on your property and belongings, but you also want to use your home as usual once again. Because of their extensive training and equipment, restoration specialists can return your home to its original state much quicker than you could yourself. To make this decision easier, the cost of restoration is covered by most insurance policies.

Another reason to work with a local restoration specialist is to make sure that you identify and remove all of the smoke and soot that remains in your home after a fire. Because smoke and soot can be very pervasive, the damage that is left behind is not always readily apparent. Restoration companies have the experience, knowledge and equipment to help you find and clean up all of the damage that has been done to your home. This can help recurring odors, and hidden damage from affecting you in the future.

One of the biggest reasons to use a professional company for your fire damage clean up is to save you time. Not only do fires cause total disarray to your home, they can also turn your life upside down. The resulting paperwork, and list of things to do can seem insurmountable. The last thing that you need to worry about is whether or not you are cleaning everything properly. By working with a trained professional, you can rest assured that your home will be cleaned quickly, thoroughly and with the utmost care.

Whether you are dealing with damage from a small fire, or something much larger, the benefits of working with a professional restoration company are numerous. Furthermore, many offer service 24/7, giving you the opportunity to start the process as quickly as you possibly can. The result is a home that is restored to its previous condition quickly, efficiently and as completely as possible.


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Monday, January 2, 2017

How to Prevent Water Damage to Your Home


Because damage caused by moisture can be extensive and difficult to repair, homeowners often go to special lengths to prevent it from happening in the first place. If a leak does occur, fast action is paramount to minimize permanent problems with the structure and interior of your home.

Structural Soundness

Excess moisture from rain or snow can cause water damage to a home. Before purchasing a house, you'll want to be sure the structure is sound and not susceptible to leaks.

If the ground around your home becomes saturated with rainwater or runoff, it could find a way into the house through cracks and leaks in the foundation. Faulty gutters could contribute to issues with wetness. Gutters are responsible for collecting precipitation and routing it away from a home's foundation. When gutters are clogged, rainwater and melted snow may not be diverted correctly and excess moisture could accumulate around the foundation.

The roof is another area where moisture can enter a home. Damaged or missing shingles are a common leak point. Sealing issues around chimneys and roof vents can also lead to leakage. You could even find water damage from leaks around doors and windows that are not sealed properly.
Termite Trouble

A termite infestation can lead to water damage. As termites eat through wood in flooring and walls, the wood left behind could cause leakage from precipitation. Leaving termite-damaged wood in place without repairing it could lead to wetness issues.

Plumbing Problems

Plumbing problems can cause significant water damage in a home. Leaking pipes can lead to small and major messes, depending on the size of the leaks and the amount of water running through the pipes. If plumbing problems occur and no one notices the issue immediately, catastrophic damage could occur. Even a small leak could cause dampness with far-reaching effects. Aside from unsightly water marks on your walls or ceilings, mold could develop.

Mold and Mildew

Any amount of wetness in the home can lead to the development of mold and mildew. Mold may develop in areas where you cannot see and detect it immediately, which can enable it to spread. Mold growing under floors and behind walls can be difficult to remove. Mold also produces spores that release into the air. These spores can cause illness such as upper respiratory symptoms, wheezing, and even pneumonitis. Children can be especially susceptible to health problems from mold.

If you notice any water damage in your home, analyze the severity to determine whether you need professional assistance. Professionals can assist you with cleanup services, including assessing your home for mold.


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