Recent Posts

Dry Wall Dust is ALWAYS frustrating

1/4/2018 (Permalink)

There is not a single builder, contractor or home owner that does not hit a frustration level with the dust that dissipates from dry wall work. IT GETS EVERYWHERE!  Well I am happy to say that SERVPRO can help the largest of jobs with this issue and will make sure it is a "non-issue" at the smaller jobs where we have our own Rebuild Division do the drywall work.

So contractors take note that if your time is getting short and your deadline creeping up on you then call SERVPRO to come out and get that dust out of your way you you can complete your work!  We can install additional barriers if you want us to work while you work... no time lost at all.  In tight situations we can even double up the work crews so you close your contract on time.

Let us do the work and free your time for jobs we can't do!

1/4/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial Let us do the work and free your time for jobs we can't do! Fire debris clean up

Many many times at commercial properties the Maintenance Crew(s) stay busy doing the many jobs necessary to take cake of the Units and Property.  

Depending on the size of your property and the number of your Units, this can be overwhelming.  Particularly if there has been a storm or natural disaster.  Don't let your Maintenance Crews burn themselves out trying to keep up with a task SERVPRO can come take off of their shoulders and free their hands for tasks that we don't do.  If multiple units are affected, we have a warehouse full of equipment to get the job done.  Better to let us help and get it done right than to try and do as much as you can risking a shortage of equipment to complete the drying process of wet and damaged debris sitting in a unit longer than it needs to.

When mold sets in your drywall

1/4/2018 (Permalink)

Mold can cause health problems and should removed as soon as it is noticed. The method used to remove mold from drywall varies on a number of issues including whether or not the drywall is coated. If it is, then cleaning it with water and a cleansing agent should work. If it is not, then that section of drywall must be removed since it is too porous to clean.

SERVPRO Technicians take specialization courses and a Certified to idenify and remove mold.  They know when it is necessary to remove the materials and drywall and when cleaning and sanitizing with chemicals is the best method to not only rid your home of mold, but keep it out!   

SERVPRO gives a warranty with every one of their services and that does include mold remediation.  Sometime the Insurance Company not only covers the process but has a warranty tailored to that company in an agreement for using SERVPRO as a Preferred Vendor. 

Prevent Basement Mold and Odors

1/4/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation Prevent Basement Mold and Odors Mold around the pipes in the basement

Basements and crawl spaces are the most problematic areas for mold and mildew.  This usually results in odor and stains.  There are measure that you can take to prevent this from happening.  By doing so you can actually improve your air quality.

Excessive moisture builds up from every day infiltration and every day activities. WATCH for the moisture and do not let it sit...wipe the area dry.

POOR ventilation can lead to excess moisture.  Put a fan in the area to circulate the air and dry the area out. If that does not help you may want to have a professional  give an estimate on adding proper ventilation to the area.

* Tighter homes trap moisture, so if your home is close to the adjacent house check to make sure the area between the homes is getting air, light and drying out.

* Natural air flow pulls the pollutants up into the living areas affecting the whole house.  Take the measures to watch and monitor your air quality. 

PREVENT FIRES - Inspect your Smoke detectors regularily

1/4/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage PREVENT FIRES - Inspect your Smoke detectors regularily Smoke detector

Checking the batteries and the status of your smoke detectors regularly is so much more important than the average home owner thinks it is.

We know they are checked before you rent or buy a house.  We know they are checked when you sell a home.  These legal steps have been added for your protection, so get in the habit of taking the extra steps necessary of checking them periodically and log it somewhere.

One of the first items mentioned when a residential fire happens if there is an injury or fatality; is that the smoke detectors were or were not operable. Something so simple can save hundreds of dollars in damage and maybe even a life.  

Some states have now required detectors that have sealed batteries guaranteed active for 10 years, Maryland recently enacted the law.  Take the time to check the status of your detector and test it on a regular basis. 

Electrical Safety Counterfeit Products Portable Heaters

1/4/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Electrical Safety Counterfeit Products Portable Heaters Recent data from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission shows that, on average, there are more than 400 electrocutions

  • More than 3,000 electrical fires are caused by extension cords each year, resulting in 50 deaths and 270 injuries.
  • Large appliances cause nearly 20 percent of consumer-product electrocutions annually.
  • U.S. Customs confiscates more than $3 million in consumer electrical products each year, and explains that products with counterfeit certification marks, including CSA, UL and ETL, have not been tested for shock and fire hazards.

Sales of electrical products increase during the winter months.  Sales of Counterfeit Electrical products is on the rise, these items have not met the testing and safety standards and can result in injury, death and property damage.  Purchase your products from reputable dealers and check for certification marks.

PORTABLE HEATER SAFETY:

  • Keep all furniture, draperies, and other household objects at least three feet from the in-wall fan heaters and 12 inches from baseboard heaters.
  • Keep portable space heaters at least three feet away from all flammable materials, such as furniture and draperies. ? Plug portable space heaters directly into the outlet; do not use an extension cord.
  • If an in-wall or baseboard heater is shut off at the circuit breaker, be sure to lock or tag the circuit breaker to prevent someone from inadvertently turning it back on.
  • Some portable space heaters, electric in-wall fan heaters and baseboard heaters have been subject to product recalls. Check your brand and model number and visit www.cpsc.gov for possible information about your heater.

Pruning trees and Storm damage prevention

1/4/2018 (Permalink)

Storm damage - Maintenance - Landscape plants - Edward F. Gilman - UF/IFAS

There is no doubt trees can cause damage and be damaged in storms. However, appropriately placed and maintained trees can help reduce damage to structures in storms by deflecting wind, and reduce damage to trees. Appropriate actions includes proper placement and planting, and structural pruning prior to the storm. Species selection can also be somewhat helpful in avoiding some damage. Actions in the weeks and years following a strong storm can help bring damaged trees back to health.

Pruning - Landscape plants - Edward F. Gilman - UF/IFAS

New research on effects of pruning trees on wind damage was recently conducted.  Five trees were pruned by either 1. doing nothing (controls), 2. reducing crown size, 3. raising the crown, or 4. thinning the crown for a total of 20 trees. The same amount of greenery was removed from each tree. All of the trees were blown with winds reaching 120 mph. These results support usage of structural pruning as a preventive method to reduce tree damage.

Winter Storm Damage and Personal Safety

1/4/2018 (Permalink)

There are a number of different ways that winter storms can impact a region and the residents. Winter storms are considered deceptive killers because most deaths are not directly related to the storm itself. People could get in an automobile accident on icy roads, have a heart attack while shoveling snow, or suffer frostbite or hypothermia from prolonged exposure to the cold.

Wind - Some winter storms have extremely strong winds that can create blizzard conditions with blinding, wind driven snow, drifting, and dangerous wind chills. These intense winds can bring down trees and poles, and can also cause damage to homes and other buildings. Heavy snow accumulations can immobilize a region and  strand motorists, and disrupt emergency services. 

Ice - Heavy ice accumulations can bring down objects like trees, utility poles and lines, and communication towers. Even a small amount of ice can cause hazardous conditions for motorists. 

Cold - Extremely cold temperatures risk exposure to infants and the elderly.  The severe cold can be potentially life-threatening and cause hypothermia and frostbite. 


Wind Chill is how the wind and cold actually feel on exposed skin. As the wind increases, heat is carried away from the body driving down the body temperature. 

Frostbite is damage to body tissue caused by extreme cold.  If symptoms are detected, get medical help immediately. Slowly re-warm affected areas. 

Hypothermia is a condition when the body temperature drops to less than 95°F, and it can be fatal.  Warning signs include uncontrollable shivering, memory loss, disorientation, incoherence, slurred speech, drowsiness and apparent exhaustion. 


Water Damage and Category type

1/4/2018 (Permalink)

IICRC Standard and Reference Guide for Professional Water Damage Restoration sets three categories of water that cause damage in buildings. They are summarized as follows:
Category 1 Water - Refers to a source of water that does not pose substantial threat to humans and classified as "Clean Water". Category 1 water may become contaminated if it mixes with soils or floor coverings, building assemblies, etc... Time and temperature can promote growth and amplification of microorganisms in water can cause Category 1 water to degrade.


Examples of category 1 water are: a broken water supply line (including the toilet), and tub or sink overflows. 

Category 2 Water - Refers to a source of water that contains a significant degree of chemical, biological or physical contaminants.  These contaminants can cause discomfort or sickness when exposed or consumed. This water type carries micro organisms and is nicknamed "Gray water."

Examples of catagory 2 water are:  toilet bowls with urine (no feces), sump pump failures, dishwasher water discharge, and washing machine water discharge.

Category 3 Water - Nicknamed "Black Water" and are grossly unsanitary. These indoor water sources  contain unsanitary agents, harmful bacteria and fungi, causing severe discomfort or sickness.

Examples of type 3 water are:  water sources from sewage, seawater, stream or river water, ground surface water or standing water.

Category 2 Water that is not promptly removed and remained stagnant may be re classified as Category 3 Water. Toilet back-ups that originate from beyond the toilet trap is considered black water contamination regardless of visible content or color.

Knowing the classification of your water may help you understand personal safety concerns and the necessary material and debris removal anticipated.

Hose Bib Winterization - Avoid Water Damage

1/4/2018 (Permalink)

To prevent damage to your home drain your outside hose bibs during the winter months!  If you don't you run the risk of water freezing in the pipes; then when the exterior hose bibs are turned on, they will attempt to push water through, breaking the pipes and flooding inside your walls. Last spring several Fort Belvoir families were inconvenienced by these burst pipes and the ensuing repairs. Your hose bibs have been equipped with anti-siphon devices to prevent your pipes from storing – and subsequently freezing – excess water. 

***** Always disconnect hoses from the exterior hose bib faucets. *****

If you use your faucets during the winter months make certain to drain the hose bib of any excess water. 

If you do not expect to use the outdoor faucets during the winter months, we advise that you drain the hose bibs and shut off the water line from inside your home.

This simple process can save you a lot of aggravation and money.