Doing an Exterior Check on your Home and Commercial Space
SERVPRO of Baldwin and Monroe has the expertise needed to handle any restoration job including fire, water, mold, and smoke damage, and also knows how important it is to pay attention to the exterior of your home and commercial space. Especially with seasons changing and many days of rain to come, faulty areas may allow for water to enter, leading to damage. Here are some things around the exterior that should be checked regularly to keep your space running at its highest potential:
- Clean out your gutters so rain can easily flow through them and drain away from the roof. Gutters filled with leaves, sticks and other debris can become damaged or not work as well.
- Check that your gutter’s downspouts are properly attached to allow water to drain away from the home. A detached or broken spout can lead to water flooding outside.
- Make sure the sump pumps in your home are operational and have a working battery. An unexpected, failed sump pump may lead to a slew of future problems.
- Check that garden hoses are properly attached to prevent water from draining into piping.
- See if the caulking on your windows needs repair. A ripped seal in the window may allow water to enter the home.
Air Ducts - When Should I have Them Cleaned?
We often get called by residential customers about having their air ducts cleaned. The discussion usually involves the following questions: First, when should I get my air ducts cleaned? Second, how often should I get my air ducts cleaned?
The answer to these questions of course is “it depends”. What is the reason you are looking to have your air ducts cleaned? There are several reasons we typically hear: general maintenance, post-construction cleaning, a fire occurred, or we think there is mold.
General maintenance is the most frequent answer, and is goes something like, “This hasn’t ever been done since I lived here.” Or “This hasn’t been done in years.” Unless there is loose dirt and other soils actively coming out of your vents, most likely it does not need to be cleaned. Anything that is up there is adhering to the ducting and will continue to do so.
The next most common situation is doing this for post construction cleaning. In this case, there may be some loose dirt or drywall dust where it maybe advantageous to have them cleaned. However, when major construction is being done in a home, it is always a good idea to turn off the HVAC system and close vents if possible to prevent particulate from getting into the ducting. Ideally, you don’t have this issue to deal with when the project is complete.
When a fire occurs, the soot and smoke can be very pervasive and get everywhere. An air duct cleaning for moderate to light smoke might do the job of removing loose particles and odor. For heavy fires it is often recommended to replace the ducting altogether.
Mold is another situation when it can be a clean or replace situation. An HVAC repair company should first be called to determine what is causing mold in the system. Sometimes we have seen it as simple as all other vents are closed with only one vent open. Other items to consider, how much of the ducting is affected by mold or is it just one or two grills? Antimicrobial can be used to kill existing growth. The key is to figure out the cause so a conducive environment for mold does not exist going forward. It is often a good to place an air scrubber to help clean the air as a precaution.
In conclusion, more times than not it is not necessary to have your air ducts cleaned. As for how often, it is usually just under special situations or if you actively seen particles coming out of the ducting.
Does Opening a Window Help Reduce Mold? - Quick FAQs
No homeowner wants to deal with mold in the home. It’s ugly and can ruin your property while posing a health risk. But how can you reduce the mold in your house? In this post, we’ll go over whether or not opening a window is helpful. We’ll also share other great ways to control and get rid of mold infestations in a home.
Does Opening a Window Help Reduce Mold? Quick FAQs
We all know that fresh air is good for us, but does it help reduce mold? Because mold is a fungus, it likes humidity and warmth. The more humidity and warmth there are in your home, the more likely it is that you’ll have a mold problem. In some cases, you won’t notice it. But if you have a mold problem, you should be wondering if you should open the windows at all.
The truth is, opening windows can help reduce mold. But, it can also increase other problems. So, it depends on the situation. If you want to reduce mold and related problems, you need to be careful about how you do it.
Other Methods To Reduce Damp and Control Mold
1 - Get a dehumidifier
Dehumidifiers are a great way to reduce the amount of humidity in your home. They also suck moisture from the air, which can help to reduce the amount of mold that forms.
2 - Run a fan in the room
In some cases, you can use fans to suck out moisture from an area with high humidity. Running a fan can also reduce the overall temperature in a room.
3 - Change your air conditioner filter
When we change our air filters, we can reduce the amount of mold in our homes. At the very least, change your filter when you notice that it’s getting dirty. Clogged filters can become a breeding ground for germs, mildew, and mold.
4 - Clean your gutters
When you have rainwater that is coming off your roof, it can splash in puddles and drip onto your siding and windows. If you have dirty and clogged gutters, this can effectively turn your siding and windows into mold-friendly surfaces.
5 - Hire a mold remediation team
If you have a serious mold problem, you might want to hire a professional team like the mold remediation contractor you can find here. They can take care of the problem quickly, thoroughly, and professionally.
There are a number of steps you can take to reduce mold in your home. Mold can harm your health and property. If you aren’t careful, it can grow and spread until you don’t know where it came from. This can cause a lot of damage to your home, your health, and the health of your family.
If you have a mold problem, you should take it seriously. You might feel like you have no choice but to try and solve it yourself. However, you might be better served by getting a team of experts involved. A team of professionals can address problems quickly, do a better job, and keep your home as clean and healthy as possible.
If you have questions or want to reach out to a mold remediation team, call SERVPRO of Baldwin & Monroe. We offer Mold Remediation, Water, Fire, and Storm Damage Restoration.
Spring Tips: General Spring Maintenance
The warmer temperatures are finally on their way after a long and cold winter. Spring is a beautiful time of year, but we must also remember spring cleaning entails a lot more than a thorough vacuum and dusting. For easy home maintenance it is important to stay on top of it and not let the chores build up season to season. In addition to saving time and money, regular maintenance is beneficial for your property because it can help you discover issues by identifying small issues before they become major repairs. Maintenance also helps with curb appeal because a well-maintained home has a more pleasant appearance increasing property value.
Here are a few more tips for your General Spring Maintenance:
1) Air Movement (Air Conditioner and Furnace)
It is a good idea to check your A/C and furnace before the first heatwave hits and your home becomes a sauna. Check all the connections, change the filter, and if necessary, have it serviced. You won’t regret it.
2) Attack the Attic
After a long and cold winter, it’s important to check your attic space to make sure no water has found its way in. You will also want to make sure no mice, insects, or other critters have nested over the winter, terrorizing your insulation. Check to make sure the insulation is dry (wet insulation is less effective) and look for signs of mould or water damage. Improper ventilation can cause condensation to buildup, become frost, and eventually result in water damage.
3) Browse the Basement
Changing season often lead to basement issues as, basements are often a hotspot for repairs. Check for cracks in the cement walls and look for signs of leaks. While you are down there, check the washing machine hoses for leaks or holes, inspect the basement windows for mould, leaks, or drafts, and watch out for signs of bugs or rodents.
5) Look for Leaks and Monitor for Mould
In addition to browsing the basement, looking for leaks and mold is vital in all areas of your home. Take the time to inspect all windows, doors, bathrooms, toilets, sinks, and other areas where water is prevalent. If you discover mould, take action immediately. If you have a large amount of mold, SERVPRO of Baldwin & Monroe would be happy to help with your mold remediation.
6) Secure Smoke Signals
Frequently checking the smoke and carbon monoxide detectors should be a regular household activity, make sure they are working properly and change the batteries when necessary (check monthly, change annually). Check your fire extinguishers to ensure there are no leaks and the pin is in place and it is not expired. It is also important to store you fire extinguisher in an easily accessible place where everyone knows where it is.
Fire experts agree, people have as little as two minutes to escape a burning home before it’s too late to get out. In a matter of moments, a small flame can become a major fire, making it critical to be prepared and have an escape plan in place. A survey conducted by the American Red Cross shows only 26 percent of families have developed and practiced a home fire escape plan. Once a plan is developed, it is critical everyone in the home understands the plan; the best way to do this is by practicing the escape plan at least twice a year. Increase your chance of surviving a fire by ensuring you have working smoke detectors in place, building an escape plan, and then practicing the escape plan. The following are a few suggestions to help you develop an emergency escape plan.
Draw a map of each level of your home and show all doors and windows. Find two ways to get out of each room. Make sure all doors and windows that lead outside open easily.
Consider escape ladders for sleeping areas on the second and third floors. Only purchase collapsible escape ladders evaluated by a recognized testing laboratory. Store them near the window where they will be used.
Choose an outside meeting place a safe distance in front of your home where everyone can meet after they’ve escaped. Make sure to mark the location of the meeting place on your escape plan.
Teach children how to escape on their own in case you cannot help them. Plan for everyone in your home with special considerations for elderly or disabled individuals.
SERVPRO of Baldwin & Monroe is ready at a moments notice to help get you and your home back to its preloss condition. We're available 24/7(478) 452-8000
Water Damage Specialists
SERVPRO of Baldwin & Monroe specializes in storm and flood damage restoration. Our crews are highly trained and we use specialized equipment to restore your property to its pre-storm condition.
Since we are locally owned and operated, we are able to respond quicker with the right resources, which is extremely important. A fast response lessens the damage, limits further damage, and reduces the restoration cost.
Resources to Handle Floods and Storms
When storms hit Monroe,Ga we can scale our resources to handle a large storm or flooding disaster. We can access equipment and personnel from a network of 1,800 Franchises across the country and elite Disaster Recovery Teams that are strategically located throughout the United States.
For Storm or Flood Damage? Call (478) 452-8000 24/7
Your Belongings and Storm Damage
Storm and water damage affects not only the structure of your house but also your belongings. SERVPRO® understands that your home is more than a structure; your family’s furniture, clothing, keepsakes, and other belongings help transform a house into a home.
SERVPRO specializes in restoring contents damaged by storms and other water damage events. Our expertise and our “restore” versus “replace” mentality can help you save money while preserving precious keepsakes that can’t be replaced. We'll pretest your contents to determine what items can be restored back to their condition before the water damage. We utilize several methods of cleaning your contents, including:
- Dry Cleaning - Used for cleaning light residues or to pre-clean prior to cleaning.
- Wet Cleaning - An effective cleaning method for removing moderate to heavy residues.
- Spray and Wipe -Effective for items that can’t withstand cleaning.
- Foam Cleaning - Used for upholstery fabrics that might shrink or bleed if cleaned.
- Abrasive Cleaning - Involves agitation of the surface being cleaned.
- Immersion Cleaning - Contents are dipped into a bath of the cleaning product.
If your home requires extensive restoration or cleaning, SERVPRO can conduct an organized, efficient move-out of the affected area. Move-out will provide several benefits, including:
- A quicker remodeling process
- Protecting items from potential damage
- Protecting contents from further on-site damage
When restoration is completed, we will work with you to coordinate the move-in according to your needs. The services offered upon move-in may depend on your insurance coverage.
Water-damaged electronics can present a serious hazard. Do not attempt to turn on or operate any electrical device that you suspect has been damaged by water. SERVPRO will coordinate the restoration of your electronics, including:
- Television sets
- DVD players
- And more
The key to restoring electronics is taking prompt action to prevent further damage. It starts by cleaning the exterior of electronic devices to help stop further corrosion and damage. Electronics will be cleaned and inspected by a qualified electronics technician.
Document / Photograph Drying
When your valuable documents, including photographs, are damaged by water, extreme caution should be taken to help ensure the water damage does not destroy the document. Although some documents may not be restored to pre-water damage condition, SERVPRO can save a great deal and help minimize additional damage. Learn more about our document restoration services.
Depending on the type of documents and the level of water damage, they have five options for the restoration of documents:
- Air Drying
- Freezer Drying
- Vacuum Freeze Drying
- Vacuum Thermal Drying
7 Quick & Easy Tips for Effective House Fire Prevention
Maintaining your home is essential to living a comfortable and peaceful life. It is a must to protect your house from damages that can ruin your precious memories and day-to-day life. If you want to avoid threats like house fires and worry about fire damage restoration, you have to work on keeping your home safe from possible causes.
For safety against house fires, here are some quick and easy tips you should follow.
Store Flammable Products in a Safe Place
You should store flammable items such as aerosol sprays, lighter fluid, paint, and lighter in an area that is far from the fire. When setting up a fire prevention blueprint for your house, make sure that you put these items in a place where they are far from flammable materials and entirely inaccessible for children.
Practice Proper Cable Management
Cables and wires that are not properly stored and organized can easily cause a fire. Cables usually carry electricity, and if two electric wires were to come together, this could cause a fire. If you are going to place your electronic devices such as computers and other gadgets, make sure that you properly organize the wires so that they won't cause a fire.
Ensure Your Dryer Is Working Properly
A dryer can easily catch fire if not maintained properly. When using your dryer, make sure that it is in good condition and not worn out. Replace the vent pipes when you start having problems with your dryer. You can also hire a professional to repair your dryer if you are not confident with handling a dryer's maintenance.
Always Be Alert When Cooking Meals
When cooking, make sure that you know what you are doing and how to do it properly. The kitchen is one of the most common places where fires occur. The reason behind this is the kitchen is full of flammable materials such as oil, gas, and there are also electrical appliances such as toasters and blenders.
If you want to avoid house fires, never leave your cooking unattended and take note of the smell of smoke. When you smell a strange smell coming from your kitchen, immediately put out the fire.
Clean Your Stove and Oven after Use
A stove and oven should be cleaned as soon as you finish cooking. There should be no traces of grease or food on the stove and oven. This will prevent the fire from starting. If grease or food acids accumulate, they will start to smoke and may cause a fire when they come into contact with flames.
Check Your Home’s Heating Sources Regularly
When you are monitoring your house for possible causes of fire, it is a must to check your home's heating sources, especially the furnace and water heater. Make sure that these devices are working properly. If you have a broken furnace or water heater that is not working, have it replaced immediately. If you are going to repair it, make sure that you are fully knowledgeable about home heating devices to avoid possible issues.
Invest in Smoke Detectors and Ensure They Work Properly
Smoke detectors are devices that can detect possible causes of fire before they can cause a big problem. They send out an alarm when they detect smoke and fire starting to form. If you want to protect your house from house fires, you should have a smoke detector on every floor of your house.
Another option is to invest in a monitored and automatic fire alarm system. This will alert your emergency fire response team to respond immediately to the fire.
The ultimate goal of having a fire prevention plan is to prevent you and your family from injuries caused by house fires. You have to make sure that you are always alert when you are in your house to avoid accidents.
If you need fire damage restoration services in Monroe, GA, work with us at SERVPRO. Our experts can help you get your property back on track—from soot removal, odor control, upholstery cleaning, and water damage restoration. Book a free inspection today to learn more.
6 Helpful Tips to Prevent Mold from Forming in Your Home
Your home is your refuge & mold can throw a monkey wrench into the peace and relaxation your home brings.
Mold can grow and thrive in places where you least expect it. Some signs of mold are visible, but others are not. Not only is it an eyesore, but also a health hazard. As a result, it's crucial to prevent mold from your home at all costs.
In this article, we list down easy ways to prevent the formation of mold in your home. Read on below to get started.
#1 - Identify Mold Hotspots
It's difficult to prevent mold from your home if you don't know where it's coming from. Before you start taking proactive measures to prevent mold, you need to know where it hides out.
Here are some areas in your home where mold can thrive:
- Behind your walls
- Behind your dishwasher
- Under the sink
- The corners of your bathroom
- Pots and pans in low cabinets
If you want to prevent mold from your home, you should regularly check these spots.
#2 - Dry Any Wet Area in Your Home
Even if you're not seeing any signs of mold in your home, you should always keep it dry. Moisture is a breeding ground for mold. For this reason, you should regularly dry up wet areas in your home.
The best way to dry up wet areas is by using a dehumidifier. A dehumidifier will absorb excess moisture in the air. In addition, this device also cleans the air in your home and purifies it.
#3 - Ensure Your Home Has Proper Ventilation
Proper ventilation ensures that the air in your home is well-circulated. It helps to promote the flow of fresh air. This is important because mold thrives in stagnant areas.
Make sure you don't put anything blocking the airflow of your vents. If you want to prevent mold from your home, you should also ensure that your doors and windows are open at least once a week. Additionally, you should also replace your furnace filters regularly. This will help your furnace and air conditioner to circulate air in your home.
#4 - Install Mold-Resistant Products
Your home has a lot of products that are prone to mold. To prevent mold from your home, you should buy products made of mold-resistant material. For example, you can replace your shower curtain after a month of use. Additionally, you should replace these products regularly to ensure that they‘re in good condition.
#5 - Clean or Repair Your Roof Gutters
If your roof gutters are leaking, water will collect in them. Water accumulation in your gutters can then become a breeding ground for mold.
The best way to prevent mold from your gutters is by using a gutter guard. This tool will prevent water from building up in your gutter. It also ensures a proper flow of water in your gutter.
#6 - Keep Your Carpets Clean
Carpets are one of the most common sources of mold in the home. To prevent mold from your carpets, you should regularly clean and vacuum them at least once a week. After vacuuming, you should use a carpet shampooer to clean your carpets.
Mold is a natural phenomenon. However, it can cause so many health problems. Many people don't realize that it's essential to prevent mold from your home until they experience it. With the tips above, you can prevent mold growth in your home.
SERVPRO of Baldwin and Monroe provides top-quality mold remediation services in Georgia. We offer safe and eco-friendly solutions to ensure your home will be safe, all for affordable prices. Contact us today to request a quote!
6 Common Water Damage Problems Left By Winter Weather
Frozen Water On A Drain Spout
As winter slowly leaves, we're ready to welcome a bit of sunshine to our lives. However, it's important to conduct a bit of inspection before you really bid the cold goodbye. Your property can usually bear the brunt of the weather, unfortunately.
For instance, any fixtures that have been overrun with snow and ice can be quite concerning. If you don't clear away these things, you may run into some severe water damage. Try to discover the issues early on and contact restoration services to fix it all.
If you're curious about what exactly you should be looking for, here are six common water damage problems left by winter weather:
1) Frozen Pipes
It's easy to forget that pipes have that much potential to cause such severe water damage to your property. While the cold weather may not cause the line to break, it does freeze any water that is within the pipe.
When water freezes for too long of a time, it's going to break it and cause the water to leak inside your walls. It's a must to thaw it out properly or have restoration experts take care of the mess that awaits.
2) Roof Snow
Winter weather can wreak havoc on many roofs. Snow can be quite a heavy burden on your roof, which can weaken its structural integrity. Plus, the possibility of leaks when the snow finally does melt is a worry that too many homeowners know all too well.
If you're vigilant about repairing leaks, you can easily prevent any water damage from occurring. However, the problem is that leaks are only noticed when it's too late. The water damage will already have happened, and there's nothing left but repairs.
3) Water Heater Leaks
Speaking of leaks, water heaters are quite guilty of water damage when overused in winter. Plus, if you've had a water heater for quite a few years, it's not unlikely that you may have a leak.
When water heaters leak, it's because of a faulty or missing expansion tank. Again, this is easiest to fix when it's noticed early on. If you let it go on for a while, you might just require a replacement instead of a repair.
4) Overflowing Gutters
When you have a lot of snow on your roof, it can cause the water in your gutters to overflow. This can cause your drains to flood due to snow or ice buildup on your housetop. Either way, clear this all away if you're going to prevent serious water damage to your place.
5) Exposed Pipe Lines
If you've got exposed pipelines, you could be in trouble. This is because they're prone to bursting, which is a surefire way to cause some serious water damage. Make sure that you've got all of your pipes covered so that they don't freeze. Prevent both water damage and injury.
6) Ruptured Water Lines
If you've got ruptured water lines, you will definitely have some serious water damage to your property. Luckily, this type of damage is easy to fix, so there's no need to go days without any water. It will require the services of a restoration service, but they'll have the job done quickly.
If you've noticed any of these six water damage problems, don't just ignore them. If you take care of these problems, you can prevent some serious water damage and just get away with a few restoration projects.
Looking for water damage restoration services in Georgia? SERVPRO of Baldwin and Monroe offers mold remediation, water, fire, and storm damage restoration. Get in touch with us now!