Recent Posts

How To Deal with House Mold

5/14/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation How To Deal with House Mold Take precautions in your home to keep mold and mildew from growing

How To Deal with House Mold

Many types of mold growth can occur in your home in Towson, MD, and most mold problems can be traced back to water damage. Any time there is high humidity in your home, you raise your risk of having a serious mold problem develop. Most issues with mold must be handled by a mold remediation specialist so that the problem does not spread or return after cleanup.

Types of Indoor Mold

Almost any type of mold can grow indoors, but some are more common than others. The molds that grow most often in homes are the ones that are particularly attracted to surfaces found therein:

• Penicillium – wallpaper, air ducts and mattresses
• Cladosporium – carpets and fabrics
• Alternaria – showers and leaky sinks
• Aspergillus – hard surfaces
• Stachybotrys – wood and drywall

If you see mold growth or smell its telltale musk, it is better to contact a mold remediation specialist to see what kind of mold it is rather than try to figure it out yourself. Professional experts are better equipped to solve the problem and avoid further growth.

Controlling Humidity

Other than taking care of water damage as soon as it occurs, you can help prevent mold problems by lowering the high humidity in your home. A dehumidifier keeps the air from dampening surfaces and making them more prone to a mold infestation. Running your air conditioner regularly helps keep air flowing throughout your HVAC system, reducing the likelihood of moisture buildup. Keeping outside humidity out of your home by having holes, cracks and air leaks repaired can bring your indoor humidity level to the 30-60 percent range where it needs to be.

No matter what type of mold may grow home, any type is unwelcome. You can take precautions against mold growth by limiting your home’s moisture levels, both on surfaces and in the air. If a mold problem does occur, make sure you have it handled by the experts as soon as possible.

For more on Towson click here.

Have the Skill To Keep the Fire in Your Grill

5/9/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Have the Skill To Keep the Fire in Your Grill Skills to keep the fire in the grill is needed during this time of the year

The weather is warming up in Towson, MD, and you can mentally smell the BBQ food you’re eager to cook outside. Unfortunately, a grill fire can surprise you as something that wasn’t on the menu if you are ill-prepared. Before looking up new recipes or seasonings to try, it’s worth learning the basics of grill safety.

Preparation Is the Key to Prevention

After ensuring the grill’s footing is stable and removing low-hanging tree branches and other flammable items near the grill, it’s time to start your grill the safe and proper way:

• Gas grills: Check the connections on both ends of the gas tank to make sure they are tight. After securing the connectors, coat the hose with a 50/50 water and soap solution before turning the grill on while its lid is open. If you witness any bubbles on the soapy hose during this test, immediately turn off the grill and have it serviced because those leaks put you at risk for a grill fire.


• Charcoal grills: A charcoal grill should be safely lit only with charcoal starter fluid or a charcoal chimney starter. Using other flammable liquids instead, a fire can get out of hand and cause flare-ups that can spread to your residence or cause BBQ smoke damage.

Meat Temperature Shouldn’t Be the Only Thing Monitored While Cooking

While cooking outside, exercise vigilance by following these tips to prevent a BBQ fire:

• Supervise the grill until it is off
• Turn the grill off if you suddenly smell gas
• Call emergency services if a gas smell doesn’t subside after turning the grill off
• Wear clothing that has no loose or hanging parts that could catch fire
• Keep a fire extinguisher nearby and know how to use it

If Fire Spreads Despite Precaution

Following these tips, most accidents can be prevented. If a grill fire occurs and cannot be contained with an extinguisher, contact your local emergency number. If the fire damages your property, a professional fire restoration crew is worth considering to restore your home’s condition and remove any residual smoke smell.

For more on Towson click here.

3 Mold Containment Methods To Keep Your Employees Safe During Remediation

4/24/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation 3 Mold Containment Methods To Keep Your Employees Safe During Remediation Keep your Employees safe during Mold Remediation

Finding mold in your Towson North, MD, commercial building can be troubling for you as a business owner, especially when it comes to the well-being of your employees. While your first instinct might be to try and eradicate any fungi on your own, mold removal is best left to experts who have the knowledge and equipment to handle the job correctly. However, there are a few containment methods you can use that may keep your employees safe until help arrives.

1. Evacuate Affected Spaces

Once mold is discovered, it is a good idea to evacuate the area. Mold growth can be affected by employee or operational activity, which can send spores into the air and allow them to settle in other areas to grow anew. Evacuating and sealing off the area until mold mitigation and restoration specialists arrive can lower the risk of additional contamination.

2. Shut Off Ventilation Systems

If your building has suffered water damage and you have a black mold problem, temporarily shutting off your ventilation and air conditioning system can prevent the spread of spores to other areas. Moist air ducts can encourage fungi growth where you cannot see it, so shutting them down until they can be cleaned and sanitized can keep mold from spreading to other parts of your building.

3. Allow Specialists To Work Unfettered

Restricting access to affected spaces so your restoration techs can focus on mold removal may help them resolve the issue faster. Do not allow employees to enter rooms where mitigation is being performed, as negative air pressure chambers may be in use to kill mold spores in the air. Move operations from the area to another floor to give your techs plenty of room to work.

Mold removal at your Towson North, MD, business may take up to a week to complete. However, taking steps to protect your employees during mitigation and restoration can lower their risk of exposure to mold and allow your techs to work more efficiently.

Click here for more on Towson North.

3 Steps for Handling a Flooded Furnace in Your Commercial Building

4/21/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage 3 Steps for Handling a Flooded Furnace in Your Commercial Building Water Damage in Commercial Building

When a plumbing mishap occurs in your Lutherville, MD, commercial building, electrical and heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems can be vulnerable to water damage. If you discover that a pipe burst in your basement during a cold snap or because of some other issue, you may also be facing a furnace flood. While this can be troubling, there are a few actions you can take to handle the situation and resolve it as soon as possible.

1. Avoid Operating the Furnace

When you realize your furnace is flooded, your first instinct may be to try and operate it to see if it is still functional. However, this can be dangerous and cause further damage to the unit. If your furnace is electric, it is especially important that you avoid touching the furnace or its controls, as this could result in a serious electric shock. Seal off the basement and contact your local electric company to inform it about the furnace flood.

2. Call In Professional Flood Cleanup Services

Contacting a qualified flood cleanup and restoration company can be an effective step in dealing with a flooded furnace. Flood technicians have the equipment and experience needed to drain flood waters from your basement and employ drying and cleaning techniques that can prevent the growth and spread of mold, which can be especially important if flood waters have sat for more than 24 hours. Removal of the water may also help your furnace repair crew reach and repair your unit with more efficiency.

3. Have the Furnace Repaired

Once flood waters are cleared, HVAC experts can assess the damage to your furnace and advise you about whether it should be repaired or replaced. They can also perform air duct cleaning to ensure your building’s ducts are free of mold, which can spread quickly after a flood.

Dealing with a furnace flood in your Lutherville, MD, commercial building can be a stressful experience. However, when you know how to approach the problem, you can resolve it with confidence and get your heating system up and running again as soon as possible.

Click here for more on Lutherville.

Safeguarding Your Home Against Potential Flood Damage

4/16/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Safeguarding Your Home Against Potential Flood Damage Severe Flooding Damage can ruin your Hardwoods in your home or business

When there’s a severe storm making its way toward your Towson North, MD, home, the most important task is to get you and your family out of harm’s way. However, if you have a few days to prepare for a potential flooding event, there are ways to organize and safeguard your property from impending flood damage. Help eliminate your chances of getting hit with extreme storm damage by following these few handy rules for flood preparation.

? Elevate your electronics and necessary utility panels. Place any objects like wiring, sockets, appliances, electrical panels or heating systems at a higher elevation in your home if possible, or simply disconnect them before you leave to prevent a potential electrical fire before any flooding occurs.

? Waterproof your basement or cellar. This can help protect your valuables from becoming part of the flood damage, as well as prevent the interior drywall or insulation from soaking up excess water — a situation that could potentially lead to mold growth later on.

? Clear away any debris caught in your home’s gutters, downspouts or storm drains. Any buildup in these areas won’t allow water to flow naturally, which can cause it to get backed up and seep into your home. Clearing the way gives the water a place to escape and increases the likelihood of your home avoiding a major flood issue.

? Move your home’s furniture and valuables to higher ground if the option is available. Keep all important documents such as birth certificates, marriage certificates, social security cards and the like contained in a steel lockbox or safe that won’t be affected by the presence of water.

Though it’s nearly impossible to be prepared for every extreme weather event that occurs in Towson North, MD, it is possible to take preventative measures to secure your home from the worst that flooding can do. Furthermore, seeking professional help from restoration specialists to clean up and secure your property after a disaster can help you return home that much faster.

Click here for more on Towson North.

Recovering from Home Fire Damage in Baltimore

4/12/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Recovering from Home Fire Damage in Baltimore After your home is aired out and clean, professionals will repair any damage the fire may have caused.

Recovering from home fire damage

Cleaning up the damage from a fire can be a time consuming task. Recovering from a home fire often involves expensive repairs to your home. When dealing with fire damage, you must contact your insurance agent and work to restore your home to its former glory. On top of that, your home likely won't be livable, which forces you to reside in temporary housing. All of these things can certainly take a toll, and that is why hiring a professional Baltimore fire damage contractor can be a worthwhile investment. They take care of cleaning and restoring your home, so you have one less thing to worry about. 

Cleaning Your Home

The first thing a professional Baltimore fire damage contractor does is clean your home. Bringing in a professional to do this can be extremely helpful because the cleaning process is not always something you can do yourself. Cleaning up after a fire is a long process involving special equipment and expertise in order to ensure that the job is done well. A professional fire damage contractor will first assess the damage caused by the fire. This helps him or her to determine how extensive the damage is, what equipment is necessary to repair and clean it, and how long it will take.  

After the damage is assessed, the fire damage contractor will immediately begin to air out the home so that mold and mildew do not begin to grow. Mold and mildew can start growing in your home in as little as 24 hours after a fire, and if they are left untreated, they can eventually cause health problems to the home's residents. 

Repairing The Damage

After your home is aired out and clean, professionals will repair any damage the fire may have caused. They will repair things like structural, drywall, carpet, and plumbing damage. They will also work to repair any other extensive damage the home may have endured. Professionals will also work quickly to fix your home. They often bring in multiple experts to assist them in making repairs so that the process is quicker. Typically, it can take anywhere from a couple weeks to a few months for repairs to be completed, but it depends on the extent of the damage.  

If your home has suffered Baltimore fire damage, it is important to contact a professional. They have experience repairing this type of damage and the proper equipment to get the job done right. No matter what the extent of the damage to your home is, it is helpful to have professional help so you can be sure the repairs will be done correctly.

Air Duct Cleaning

4/6/2018 (Permalink)

WHY CLEAN AIR DUCTS?

by NADCA (North American Duct Cleaning Association)

SERVPRO of Hunt Valley / Lutherville have been members since 2015

In addition to normal accumulations of dust and dirt found in all homes with air ducts, there are several other factors that can increase the need for regular HVAC system cleaning: pets, occupants with allergies or asthma, cigarette or cigar smoke, water contamination or damage to the home or HVAC system, and home renovation or remodeling projects.

Indoor air quality is one concern that homeowners have when they decide to investigate air duct cleaning. Your heating and cooling system is the lungs of your home. The system takes air in and breathes air out.

According to the U.S. Department of Energy, 25 to 40 percent of the energy used for heating or cooling a home is wasted. Contaminants in the heating and cooling system cause it to work harder and shorten the life of your system.

TAKING IT TO THE STREETS

Applying industry knowledge to a real life situation

Before a couple moved into their newly purchased home, they had mold mitigation services preformed before closing. After 5 years they were afraid that the mold had come back because of ongoing sickness in the family. SERVPRO of Hunt Valley / Lutherville came out and informed them that it was, in fact, not mold but a vent cleaning problem. After cleaning out the ducts in their home, the family felt much better and the constant sickness subsided. They stated that they could tell a difference instantly.

An Introduction to Black Mold

3/26/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation An Introduction to Black Mold Commercial Black Mold Remediation

With so many news stories about black mold, you may be worried about whether you have mold growing in your home. Before you panic or spend a large sum of money for a mold test in Hampton, MD, here are the things you need to know about mold and the signs that you may have it in your house.

What Is It?

Mold is a type of fungus, distantly related to the mushrooms you put in your salad and the yeast used to brew beer and make bread. While much attention has been given to Stachybotrys Chartarum, a species of black mold that is particularly toxic, there are actually many species of mold that appear black. Other species may appear as green, brown, white or even pink.

Mold reproduces by releasing spores, which are carried on the breeze new locations. If the spores land in a moist, dark, warm environment, they will flourish and grow into a large colony. This is what you see on your bathroom tile.

What Makes It Grow in Your Home?

Moisture is the number-one factor that determines where mold grows. If you have any areas in your house that are always damp, then you have prime real estate for mold. The most common causes of excess moisture in houses are:

• Leaks in the roof or around windows and doors
• Broken water supply lines
• Broken water pipes
• Leaking bathtubs or showers
• High humidity
• Condensation
• Flooding

If you don’t have a problem with excess moisture in your home, you likely don’t need to worry about mold.

How Can You Prevent It?

The best way to prevent mold from growing is to prevent moisture build-up. Keep your home in good repair, do regular maintenance on your plumbing and keep rooms well ventilated. If you live in an area where humidity is an issue, use a dehumidifier or air conditioner to keep indoor humidity below 50 percent - 60 percent. If you do notice black mold in your home, don’t attempt to do a mold cleanup on your own. A professional mold remediation service in Hampton, MD, can return your home to a healthy state.

Visit us at http://www.SERVPROhuntvalleylutherville.com for more information. 

Wanda and Elenor have worked for SERVPRO 37 Years!

3/26/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial Wanda and Elenor have worked for SERVPRO 37 Years! Wanda and Sissy Holding up a signed thank you poster for their dedication.

What makes a SERVPRO Crew Chief show up for work 37 years, and counting? Just one little comment…

Wanda Albright, and her sister, Eleanor “Sissy” Helmick, have been SERVPRO of East Harford County Crew Chiefs for nearly four decades, through countless restoration industry changes and three different franchise owners, giving their all for customers and co-workers, too!

Since 1981, this dedicated pair have seen many changes in the restoration industry, and drastic growth for the company, but their focus remains the same: on those experiencing stress and trauma from damages to their homes. Wanda sums up her work’s greatest reward, helping customers and their homes return to normalcy, “I just love going into a home where it’s a disaster and I make it perfect… I like to make a difference.”

Owners Jim and Trish Wall, SERVPRO of East Harford County; SERVPRO of Hunt Valley / Lutherville; and SERVPRO of Bel Air, understand employees are what makes a business great, and Wanda and Sis are, no doubt, exceptional in their dedication to customer, company, and team. “Throughout their 38+ year careers, Wanda and Sissy have always dreamed of visiting the corporate headquarters, so this past January, we made their dreams come true with an anniversary trip to Tennessee. With the help of our East Harford County General Manager, Toni Townsley, Wanda and Sissy visited SERVPRO Industries, Inc. headquarters, toured the facility, met several corporate employees, and made the SERVPRO TV news in a segment dedicated to them!” Then to top off the fun, the pair spent two nights downtown, enjoying themselves and the sights and sounds of Nashville. It was quite a memorable trip and well-deserved for such dedicated and loyal people.

And while recognition of their accomplishments and acknowledgment of their dedication is surely important to good employee morale, what exactly could keep these crew chiefs coming back year-after-year to the very same job? According to Sis Helmick, just one thing… “It makes me feel good. It makes me feel proud when someone comes to me and tells me ‘Thank you so much. You’ve helped us tremendously.’ That’s what I do it for. That one little comment.”

3 Tips for Cleaning Up After Your Home Is Damaged by Water

3/21/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage 3 Tips for Cleaning Up After Your Home Is Damaged by Water Water loss in Hampton

When you think of water damage, you might think of issues caused by heavy rains or hurricanes. However, your Hampton, MD, home can be affected by flooding as the result of a plumbing disaster or a failed water appliance, such as a washing machine or dishwasher. When this type of problem occurs, there are a few steps you can take to clean up the water and assess the damage.

1. Avoid Flooded Rooms

Water from your dishwasher or washing machine can contain detergent chemicals that might harm your skin, and a malfunctioning water heater may burst and give you serious burns. It is wise to shut off the water supply to the broken appliance and then seal the room until help arrives. Do not let anyone go into the room, especially if you know electrical systems might have been damaged.

2. Call in Restoration Services

A professional flood cleanup and restoration company can help get the cleanup process started when you are dealing with water damage. Flood technicians may assist with removing any remaining water and advise you on what kind of repairs you might need to make. For example, if broken pipes have caused a flood in your kitchen, restoration experts can help you understand whether wall sections or flooring can be repaired or if they will need replacing.

3. Sort Through Wet Items

Once the area is safe to enter, you can then take stock of water damage by retrieving wet items and sorting them. Dry what you can in a low-humidity area, out of direct sunlight, and then disinfect smaller objects. You may want to ask your restoration company which items are safe to keep and which you must throw away after the water cleanup.

When a water appliance breaks and causes a flood in your Hampton, MD, home, it can cause a variety of problems. However, knowing how to deal with water damage may go a long way in keeping you safe and preventing long-term harm to your home.

Visit us at http://www.SERVPROhuntvalleylutherville.com for more information.