Indoor Environmental Specialists Play a Role in Controlling Mold You Can't See
As a property owner or manager, concern over mold growth may one of your top priorities.
As a property owner or manager, concern over mold growth may one of your top priorities. Any dark, humid space with a suitable organic substance can provide the ideal breeding ground for this intruder. Unfortunately, those organic substances are plentiful in the walls, ceilings, and floors of any property. One common problem for commercial property owners is that mold can become a problem before there's any visible proof of its existence. This is where an indoor environmental specialist comes in.
What These Professionals Do
According to the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning, and Restoration Certification and other national and international professional agencies, the work of an indoor environmental professional includes the following:
- Assessing fungal ecologies on the property, including systems and contents
- Creating sampling strategies
- Sampling the indoor environment
- Interpreting data
- Determining the course of corrective action
Many states have initiated standards and exams that professionals must adhere to before they can claim the title of an indoor environmental specialist. This move helps property managers feel confident in the work of the technicians.
A Hidden Threat to Your Properties
The unfortunate truth is that by the time you see visible evidence of mold growth, the problem could be widespread. Don't wait to see those black spots or to smell unpleasant odors before scheduling a mold test. Professionals in Perry, OK should visit your properties annually, at least, to make sure your properties aren't hosting unwanted colonies of mold and mildew.
A Combination of Understanding and Professional Efforts
The more you know about mold, the better you can control the environmental factors that support its growth. As you learn more about the conditions that spread spores and cause mold to thrive, you can take any necessary steps to prevent further trouble. An indoor environmental specialist is a key player in these actions. Schedule routine inspections and be sure to carry out the strategies that professionals recommend for the protection of your Perry, OK properties.
Differences Between Grey and Black Water
Black water in Stillwater, OK
What Type of Water Has Appeared After a Flood in Your Home?
The level of concern you should feel after a flood inside your home depends on what type of water has appeared. There is white water, which is plain, clean water with little to no contaminants. You should be able to tell when water is contaminated based on the color and odor, and you should never attempt a DIY fix without professional guidance. Contact professionals in Stillwater, OK who know how to safely handle water damage caused by grey or black water.
Grey water refers to liquids that come out from pipes and other structures that does not contain human waste. This water may contain:
- Soap particles
While this does result in a certain amount of contamination, it is not as severe as it could be, and there is less of a risk of people in the vicinity suffering from health problems caused by exposure. If your household uses natural, biodegradable soaps free or boron, chlorine and sodium, then you will have even less to fear. However, if left untreated, this type of water can slowly grow worse.
Water damage from black water is a severe problem that needs to be addressed immediately. When flooding occurs due to a blockage in the sewer system, drains in your house will bring up water contaminated by fecal matter and pathogens. A professional team will need to be brought in to safely remove the waste and the affected drywall.
When you discover water backing up into your home, you need to take prompt action to handle it right away to curtail a disaster. If you cannot tell where the water came from or if it has darkened in color even in the slightest, then you should avoid touching it, because you could end up hurting yourself. Instead, leave water damage remediation in Stillwater, OK to the professionals.
Visit http://www.SERVPROstillwaterguthrie.com for more information on storm damage.
How To Recognize Category 2 Water Damage
Commercial water damage in Perry, OK
The water cleanup process includes several phases, one of which is disinfecting any contaminated areas. When water damage experts assess the problem in your building in Perry, OK, they must determine the level of the water's contamination. They do this by placing it in the appropriate category. After a water pipe repair, you may have Category 2 damage, even though the water was clean when it came out of the pipe.
There are three categories of water damage contamination that experts use to determine the scope of the cleanup process:
- Category 1 - Clean water, usually from a broken pipe or supply line
- Category 2 - Dirty water, usually from an appliance such as a refrigerator
- Category 3 - Contaminated water, usually from sewer lines or storm flooding
If water pipe repair is completed and the subsequent damage is mitigated quickly, the contamination level is likely to stay at a Category 1. The longer water damage sits, however, the more likely it is to move to Category 2 damage as it becomes contaminated by the dirt and the breakdown of materials. Then you have to add a step to the cleanup process to disinfect your building.
The longer you take to call cleanup experts, the more likely your flooded building is to have Category 2 damage. When experts arrive, they can test for contamination to determine if they need to add an extra cleaning step. They start by removing materials that can't be salvaged. Then they use industrial cleaners or purification machines to remove any bacteria that have started to grow in the affected area. Only after this disinfection has been completed can your structure be restored to its former state.
Fast action is necessary with any damage to your building. If you need water pipe repair, you probably need water damage remediation. Call your local experts quickly to avoid further damage that can complicate the remediation process.
3 Tips for Preparing Your Business Against a Flood
Commercial storm damage in Guthrie, OK
When storm season arrives in Guthrie,OK, many business owners may begin wondering about how to protect their property from flooding. When proper preparation occurs ahead of time, damage and loss can be mitigated. Here are three tips that may help your business better prepare.
1. Ensure the Exterior Is Properly Prepped
You can help protect your business's property from flood damage by properly preparing the exterior before the storm arrives. This can mean trimming trees with branches that could fall into the building, taking down awnings, making sure doors and windows are closed and sealed, sandbagging if necessary, and any other storm proofing methods recommended for your area. Prepping beforehand can mean less cleanup after. It’s also recommended that you become familiar with the water damage professionals in your area in case flood damage does occur.
2. Keep Backup Files Updated
One of the main risks to businesses when flooding occurs is the loss of electronic equipment and the files stored on them. In many cases it’s the loss of the files that’s the bigger disaster. One of the best ways your company can prevent this is to keep backups at an alternate location or in the cloud. If you have a server, your IT company may already do this for you. If your equipment suffers damage, these backups can be uploaded into repaired or replacement machines.
3. Move Necessary Items and Equipment to a Safe Area
Another way to protect your company from storm damage is to move the items you wish to protect to a safe location. This could be an upper floor or a room at the center of the building that’s away from doors and windows. In the event the building does flood, these items will be less likely to be in the path of any water.
If you're in an area such as Guthrie,OK, that could experience flooding, you may want to consider these tips before the next storm. Properly preparing your business for the weather beforehand can help prevent the loss of files and property, as well as costly repairs
Top Fire Preparation Tips for Homeowners
Prepare your home in Navina, OK, your family and yourself for a home fire by heeding the above fire safety tips.
Being in a home fire in Stillwater, OK, is a nightmare. You wonder, what could be worse? The answer is not being prepared. In order to act quickly in any emergency, you must understand and practice what to do ahead of time. Fire preparation is no different. To prepare your home and your family, institute the following fire safety tips.
The best time for fire preparation is now. If you wait until there is a fire, it is too late.
• Install functioning smoke detectors in your home. At the minimum, this includes alarms outside the sleeping areas and on each level of your home. Maintain your detectors by changing the batteries at least once per year and checking the alarm once per month. If possible, install interconnected detectors that sound at the same time when one is triggered. Teach all family members the sound of the alarm and what it means.
• Plan an escape plan, ensuring that all family members know two ways to exit each room.
• Determine an outside meeting place and how to contact one another.
• Teach even young children how and when to call 911 in an emergency.
Repetition of fire safety skills increases the chance of acting quickly in a fire.
• Practice the predetermined family escape plan twice a year or more. Start from different rooms of the house or use a stopwatch to make it more challenging.
• Practice how to stop, drop and roll in the event a home fire spreads to clothing.
Prepare your home in Stillwater, OK, your family and yourself for a home fire by heeding the above fire safety tips. If your nightmare becomes a reality, use what you have learned and practiced during fire preparation to lead your family to safety. Once out of danger, consider the next steps to repair your home. Start by contacting a fire restoration specialist to help you through the process of cleaning and restoring your house and personal belongings. Also call your insurance agent, as fire damage is covered under most homeowner’s policies. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROstillwaterguthrie.com/.
Is Security Fencing Necessary After a Commercial Fire?
It’s highly recommended that you install a security fence
Is Security Fencing Necessary After a Commercial Fire?
Suffering a major fire at your business can be a real challenge for you and your employees. Once you know that everyone is safe it’s time to start thinking about the next step — limiting the amount of damage to the property itself. One of the most effective methods is installing a temporary security fence. Fencing will greatly reduce or prevent:
1. Animal Entry
Animals can wreak havoc on a building. While you may not be able to completely keep animals out, proper fencing should limit it considerably. From animal waste to chewed wires, a building can suffer a lot of avoidable destruction.
Vandals can cause a variety of problems in a vacant building; the loss can be significant in mere minutes. From broken windows, graffiti, and fire damage to a ransacked property, in general. You may want to consider barbed wire at the top of your fence if you think vandalism is likely.
For some people, your vacated property is an opportunity to steal. A security fence will make it difficult for someone to enter the premises, and next to impossible to exit with stolen items, especially if those items are large.
4. Liability Issues
Trespassing is illegal, but you could still be sued for personal injury if an intruder gets hurt on your property. This could be particularly serious if it involves a child. Protective fencing will keep children and others from roaming around on your property.
5. Insurance Problems
Your insurance company will expect you to take every reasonable step to limit additional loss to the affected property. Damage from negligence after the fact probably won’t be covered. Installing fencing will prove that you’re taking precautions to contain the area while keeping as many external hazards out as much as possible.
If your commercial building sustains major fire damage in Sumner, OK, it’s highly recommended that you install a security fence. Then, remediation professionals can work to return your building to its preloss condition.
You Can Replace Your Own Toilet With These 5 Simple Steps
Call in a Guthrie, OK water damage restoration team to ensure there is no extensive water damage
Replace Your Toilet with 5 Simple Steps
Whether you're dealing with a leaking toilet or you simply found a toilet with crazy features at your local hardware store that you just could not live without, you may wonder how much it will cost you to have a Guthrie, OK, plumber come in to make the swap for you. Depending on your capabilities, resourcefulness and level of confidence this may be an unnecessary concern. You can replace your toilet five simple steps.
1. Sever the Water Supply
Whether you're making a toilet repair or swapping out an old toilet with a new, you need to be sure to cut the water supply. Once the supply line is disconnected, flush and drain the tank.
2. Detach the Wax Seal
Use a wrench to loosen the bolts holding the toilet, then take a pocket knife or other sharp object and cut the caulk seal surrounding the base of the toilet. Remove the toilet gently. Use a putty knife to remove the wax seal.
3. Caulk the New Base
This step can help you prevent a future leaking toilet, as caulk serves to eliminate gaps between the wax ring and toilet base. It also helps make installation easier.
4. Install a New Wax Ring
You do not want to reuse a wax ring. Place a new one where the old was, and then lift the new toilet into place. Do not press down, as the weight of the fixture will compress the seal itself.
5. Tighten the Bolts
Once the toilet is in place, place a washer over the bolts and tighten the nuts by hand. You can use a large screwdriver or wrench to finish the job. Be careful to not overtighten, as it will crack the ceramic.
If your leaking toilet was leaking for a while, you may want to call in a Guthrie, OK, water damage restoration team to ensure the there is no extensive water damage. Failure to properly clean water damage can result in costly issues in the future.
6 Shutter Styles You May Need for Your Home
Having your home protected with hurricane window coverings can also save you money in the long run by lowering your insurance premiums.
If you live in an area that is prone to hurricane and high winds, such as Stillwater, OK, you can mitigate potential damage to your home and protect family by installing storm shutters. Having your home protected with hurricane window coverings can also save you money in the long run by lowering your insurance premiums.
Many types of hurricane window coverings are available. Here are just a few of the more popular options.
Plywood may not be pretty. However, it is usually an inexpensive, readily available option that can cost less than $1 per square foot of window space.
2. Storm Panels
Storm panels are often an economical option that may only need to be installed if a hurricane is imminent. The cost for these panels is $7-$15 per window.
Accordion-style window coverings can be stored folded up in a box that is secured to one side of the window. They can then be manually unfolded to cover the window when needed. These shutters often cost $15-$25 per square foot of window space.
4. Bahama Awnings
Bahama awnings can provide shade as well as protect windows from damage by high winds. These shutters can be installed on the tops of windows to provide awnings, and then can be unlatched when you need to cover the window. These coverings may cost about $15-$20 per square foot.
These window coverings are typically installed in a box bolted above the window. A cranking mechanism unrolls the shutters across the length of the window, and then they are bolted down at the bottom. They can also provide effective insulation, helping to save costs of heating or cooling a home at a cost of $20-$30 per square foot of window area.
Colonial storm shutters are usually mounted permanently on either side of a window and bolted in place. When needed, they can be unfolded to cover the window. Colonial-style window coverings cost about $200-$500 per window.
Expecting stormy weather? The next time high winds are forecast in your area, you can have peace of mind when you have quality window coverings installed for your home. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROstillwaterguthrie.com/.
Keeping Your Home Cooling System Mold-Free
Most homes have a cooling system, usually a swamp cooler (also known as an evaporative cooler)
Here Are Three Cooling System Basics You Should Know
In today’s climate-controlled homes, it’s easy to forget about your cooling system until it malfunctions. A leaking swamp cooler or dirty air ducts are signs it’s time to check your indoor air quality.
1. Swamp Cooler vs. Air Conditioner
Most homes have a cooling system, usually either a swamp cooler (also known as an evaporative cooler) or a central air conditioner. Air conditioners use liquid refrigerant, fans, and a series of ducts to force cooled air to all rooms of the home. An evaporative cooler uses water, a cellulose pad, and a fan to cool the air. Because of their smaller size and lack of an extensive vent system, the latter is typically used for one room or a small space. The cellulose pad is constantly being soaked with water, which can lead to mold growth.
2. Humid vs. Dry Air
The home cooling system you should use depends on your location and climate. Homes in areas with low humidity are often equipped with swamp coolers because the air is dry enough to inhibit mold damage. In places with high humidity, such as the Southeastern states, it’s better to use a central air conditioning system because it doesn’t rely on water to cool the air. An evaporative cooler can add too much extra humidity to the air in an already humid climate; a leaking swamp cooler can harbor mold.
3. Clean vs. Dirty Equipment
The best way to keep your indoor air healthy, no matter where you live, is to maintain your air conditioner or evaporative cooler. Inspect visible components for mineral buildup and remove it if present. Check any associated ducts and drywall for signs of mold; if you find it, you’ll need the help of a mold remediation specialist in Ceres, OK. Regularly replacing the cellulose pads in swamp coolers also keeps potential mold under control.
Preventing a leaking swamp cooler or maintaining your air conditioner are key steps to healthy indoor air. When regularly serviced, your cooling system can keep your home comfortable for years to come.
3 Steps To Mitigate Roof Damage To Your Home
It’s a good idea to pay attention to what the weather is doing in your area.
Consider These Three Steps
When you live in an area such as Sumner, OK, you may be worried about the local weather causing roof damage to your home. Fortunately, a storm damage restoration service can help with any repair needs you may have. However, there are a few things you can do beforehand to mitigate potential problems. Next time there’s a storm in your area consider these three things.
1. Pay Attention To the Weather
It’s a good idea to pay attention to what the weather is doing in your area. This will help you have time to prepare properly before a storm occurs. If you’re expecting heavy wind or rain you can take steps such as covering over areas of your roof that may be prone to damage with tarps or boards until a professional can make repairs. You may also want to check for debris or loose gutters that could also be knocked around by the weather and damage your roof.
2. Clean Out Your Gutters
You may also want to take the time to clean out your gutters as this also can help prevent roof damage to your home. Debris such as sticks or leaves can clog the gutter and lead to water backup. This water can then overflow onto the roof and cause problems. When the gutters are clean and the downspouts pointed away from the building, this potential issue is much less likely to occur.
3. Trim Back Overhanging Trees
Another way to help mitigate wind damage to your home’s roof is to trim back any trees that might overhang. Look for weak or dead branches that could be knocked loose by the wind. During a storm, these have the potential to fall on the roof causing damage. Taking the time to remove them beforehand may help mitigate the problem.
If you’re trying to mitigate storm caused roof damage to your home you may want to consider keeping an eye on the weather, keeping your gutters clear of debris and taking the time to trim back any overhanging trees. If damage does occur, a restoration service can help with any clean up and repair needs.