Recent Posts

Do Your Houseplants Look Powdery? It Might Be Mildew.

7/28/2020 (Permalink)

Plant with mildew Plant mildew will only affect living flora

Important Facts To Know About Mildew

In Carrolltown, PA, many of us are spending more time inside lately. Houseplants have become a popular way to bring an organic, calming feel to interiors. If your indoor jungle ever becomes lackluster (and you see a white powdery substance on the leaves), it might be suffering from plant mildew. Here are some important facts to know about mildew, mold, and when to call in extra help.

1. Mildew and mold are different. These terms are often confused or used interchangeably, but the organisms behave in distinct ways. Mildew is a parasite found only on living plants and causes a disease in the plant. Mold grows on non-living surfaces. Luckily, the mildew growth on your fiddle-leaf fig won’t spread to places like the walls or floor. Getting rid of it is usually a simple process.

2. Mildews can be plant-specific. However, the conditions that foster any mildew are similar, often occurring in humid and damp areas. To curb any plant mildew, prune out the affected portion of each plant, up to 25%. If any remains, pick up a mildew removal spray targeted specifically to the type of plant you have. For instance, mildew sprays for houseplants may differ from those for vegetable or flower gardens. Do not use a product aimed at household mold removal on plants—it will kill the plant.

3. Mildew thrives in moisture. Monitoring the humidity levels in your home is a simple way to prevent mildew on plants and mold damage to your house. This becomes especially important if you live in a humid or tropical climate. If this is the case, improving air circulation with a fan or open window can help. You may even consider investing in an in-home dehumidifier that can regulate the moisture levels depending on the weather.
If you’re ever in doubt about distinguishing mold growth from mildew, observe the surface that’s being affected. Plant mildew will only affect living flora. If you notice mold on walls, floors, or other building materials, it’s best to call a mold remediation specialist.

When Did You Last Think About Your Fire Escape Plan?

7/6/2020 (Permalink)

People escape to fire exit door How many emergency exits are there in your building?

How To Craft An Escape Plan

How many times throughout your day do you consider your disaster planning? Do you run through your fire prevention efforts and exit strategies? A contingency plan can be a useful tool in the event of a disaster, but if you fail to practice or review it, is it really a help? Having a fire restoration company in Cresson, PA, on standby is only part of the preventive strategy, it is also necessary to know how to craft an escape plan and ensure your staff and facility stay safe during a fire.

Count the exits
Eliminate obstacles
Inspect preventative systems
Get real about practice

Count the Exits
How many emergency exits are there in your building? How many exits out of each room? The minimum number of exits suggested for an evacuation plan is two for every room. People need to have multiple ways of getting to safety from their workspace. In offices, a door and a window are enough, but make sure that employees have tools needed for a safe escape.

Eliminate Obstacles
As part of the contingency plan and escape, it is crucial to keep hallways free and clear. Also, avoid placing shelving and storage in front of windows or doorways. When a fire happens, the smoke makes it nearly impossible to see. Obstacles only slow down a person's escape.

Inspect Preventative Systems
Annual and semi-annual inspections of preventative systems can help reassure you and your staff of the safety of the building. Sprinkler systems and fire extinguishers are some of the best defenses against fire, and keeping these tools functional should be a priority among business owners.

Get Real About Practice
Too many companies have escape plans, but they fail to practice. Having maps and exit signs are not enough to ensure the safety of employees. Practice regularly throughout the year.
A business contingency plan is about preparing for the worst-case. If you need help designing a plan, then contact a disaster professional for advice.

Eradicate Mold in Commercial Property for Good

6/11/2020 (Permalink)

Mold growth after water loss in wood Mold growth after a water loss in Portage, PA

Improper commercial mold remediation not only leaves potential harmful effects, but it also means a long-term problem for Portage, PA, businesses that can become quite costly to fix and result in a business interruption loss. Contacting a certified and highly trained mold remediation and removal company is the key to stopping mold growth in its tracks.

Professional Process

At the first signs of mold, quick action should be taken since mold can begin to spread within 48 hours. If growth continues, along with cleanup, mold restoration processes will be needed. After contacting a professional, the following steps will be taken to ensure a business remains mold-free.

Inspection and Assessment: A trained mold professional will conduct a thorough inspection using the latest technology to detect hidden mold and water damage.
Containment: Various containment procedures are used during cleanup to keep spores from spreading to non-contaminated areas, such as a negative air chamber and physical barriers.
Air Filtration: Specialized filtration equipment is used to capture microscopic spores and clean the air.
Removal of Infested Items: While some porous materials may need to be disposed of, mold can be removed from many surfaces with high-grade antifungal and antimicrobial treatments.
Content Cleaning: Even if the mold is gone, a smell can linger. An array of cleaning methods are used to deodorize and sanitize furniture, curtains, equipment, and other items.
Restoration: The amount of work needed will depend on the severity of the mold infestation. It is likely that portions of drywall and other building materials will need to be replaced.

Trusted Leader
When it comes to commercial mold remediation, a business is putting more than the cleanup in a professional’s hands. SERVPRO knows how detrimental it is for businesses to be mold-free and reduce costs from damage. With a team of trained and certified specialists in microbial remediation, water damage restoration, applied structural drying, odor control, and upholstery and fabric cleaning technician, you can have confidence that the problem is in the right hands.
While hopefully, the need for commercial mold remediation doesn’t arise, if it does, count on a local team that can make it “Like it never even happened.”

How To Recover After a Pipe Break

5/27/2020 (Permalink)

Open faucet running water Open faucets to relieve the pressure that's built up within your pipes

Take These Steps To Lessen The Extent of The Problem

Whether you're a first-time homeowner or a seasoned pro, dealing with bursting pipes can be overwhelming. If you find broken pipes in your home, don't panic. Take these steps to lessen the extent of the problem:

  • Turn off your water main and open faucets to relieve the pressure that's built up within your pipes.
  • Open windows and doors to allow air circulation.
  • Call cleanup and mitigation experts as soon as possible.
  • Take steps to avoid future pipe breaks.

Mitigating Water Damage
When you discover leaks within your home, it's crucial to fix broken pipes as soon as possible. Water seeping into your home can lead to structural damage and mold if it's not addressed. Should you find a leak that has been going unnoticed for some time, you will need to call water damage remediation experts. Professionals in the industry have the tools and training required to find the source of your issue and to fully sanitize your home. In addition to replacing broken pipes, trained professionals can remediate mold damage as well as identify problems that may exist within your home's walls or floors.

Stopping Future Issues
Taking steps to stop future bursts is an important part of dealing with broken pipes. Though some pipe breaks can happen unexpectedly, many are caused by improper insulation. Be sure to keep your pipes, especially those that are prone to freezing, at proper temperatures. You can avoid bursting pipes by adding pipe sleeves or heat tape. If you don't have these supplies, you can insulate your pipes with newspapers or other materials to add a buffer from freezing temperatures. Allow warm air to circulate around indoor pipes by opening cabinets and keeping your thermostat above 32 degrees, even if the house is empty.
If you are facing the problems that come with bursting pipes, don't hesitate to call for help. Time is of the essence, and a team of experts can get your Ebensburg, PA, home back in shape as soon as possible.

Smoke Alarm 101

5/27/2020 (Permalink)

Smoke detector mounted on roof in apartment A smoke alarm can be an important tool for informing you of danger before a fire gets out of hand

Smoke Alarm 101

While a fire damage restoration service can help make repairs after a fire occurs, many professionals recommend using fire alarms so that you can be informed of a fire in time to evacuate and call the fire department. When installing a smoke alarm in your Johnstown, PA, home there are a few things you should know.

1. Different Types of Alarms

There are several different types of alarm you can consider when taking fire safety precautions in your home. A heat alarm goes off when the room temperature reaches a specific degree. Ionization and photoelectric detector both react to smoke, although an ionization detector triggers when an electric current is interrupted and a photoelectric detector senses smoke with a beam of light. You may also be able to find combination detectors as well.

2. Where To Place Alarms

It’s recommended to place a smoke alarm inside and outside each bedroom. The bedroom alarm should be placed closer to the door so that it will go off if any smoke leaks through. The alarm outside the bedroom can be placed so that it centers between several rooms so that everyone can hear it’s warning. You should also place an alarm in the kitchen, and in any workshop areas that use power equipment.

3. How Many Alarms to Have

Many professionals recommend having at least one smoke detector per floor in your home. There should also be one alarm per bedroom. You can also count an alarm for each additional location you believe to be important. The total of these added together will be the number of alarms that should be in your residence.

A smoke alarm can be an important tool for informing you of danger before a fire gets out of hand. Remember there are several types of alarms and choose the best fit for your home. It’s recommended to place one alarm per floor, and one alarm in each bedroom. Remember, if a fire does occur, a restoration service can help.

Dryer Fire Safety

5/25/2020 (Permalink)

Clothes dryers can be found in over 8.1 million home in the United States, but did you know they are responsible for over 2,900 home fires that have resulted in millions of dollars in property loss.

The leading cause of home clothes dryer fires are from the users failure to properly clean them. Over time the dryer vent fills up with lint that sneaks into the filters that will begin to restrict airflow causing heat to build up and sometimes ignite.

There is no such thing as a small fire. Regardless of the size of the event, a fire in one room can damage belongings and surfaces throughout your home and cause odors that may last for years if not properly cared for. Before you risk doing further damage to your home by attempting to cleanup the damage yourself, call the fire damage cleanup and restoration professionals!

SERVPRO of Ebensburg can help with Fire Damage 

As a trusted leader in the restoration industry, SERVPRO of Ebensburg has highly trained technicians that are dedicated to responding to any size disaster with 24-hour emergency response. Contact us today, at 8(814) 472-0800, to see what SERVPRO of Ebensburg can do to help you!

Water Damage Restoration Process

5/11/2020 (Permalink)

Water Damage Restoration Process

Water damage to your Vinco, PA, business can be a major problem. Fortunately, if you act quickly you can prevent further damage. The following steps outline the cleanup process.

1. Document the damage. Because mold growth can begin in as few as 24 hours, it is important to begin water cleanup as soon as possible. It may not be feasible to wait for an insurance adjuster to visit your property, so it is important to document the water damage. Take detailed photo and video evidence. When you talk to your insurance agent, be sure to ask if there are any specific instructions regarding documentation.

2. Remove standing water. To prevent mold growth and structural damage, it is important to remove the water as quickly as possible. There are specialized pumps and vacuum cleaners available to help with this task. You can also use buckets to scoop out the water.

3. Dry out remaining water. After all the standing water has been removed, there will still be moisture within porous surfaces that can cause further damage. You can use fans and dehumidifiers to speed the drying process. If the humidity outside is low enough, you can open windows and doors to increase airflow.

4. Clean affected areas. There may be bacteria, dirt or other contaminants in the water, so it is important to thoroughly clean all surfaces that came into contact with the water. The type of water, whether from broken pipes, roof leaks or other sources, and the surface being cleaned will determine the best cleaner.

5. Repair and replace. All items that cannot be fully cleaned and dried should be thrown out. You may wish to have a professional restorer look at valuable electronics and antiques to determine whether or not they can be salvaged.
Dealing with water damage can be overwhelming. Fortunately, an experienced restoration service can help you get your business back to normal quickly and safely.

3 Tips for Ridding Air Ducts of Mold

5/11/2020 (Permalink)

3 Tips for Ridding Air Ducts of Mold

Black mold can grow anywhere there is excess water and something for it to feed on. If you have mold on the walls or carpeting of your building in Belsano, PA, you are likely to see it during your regular inspection tours. Mold in your air ducts can be a little harder to detect, though. Here are three tips for finding and getting rid of mold growth in your HVAC system.

1. Locate the Problem
Unlike other fungus infestations, mold in your ducts may not be immediately apparent. There are a few signs that should grab your attention:

  • Mold patches on vents
  • Stale air throughout the building
  • Musty odor

To find out the actual scope of the problem, you need to have your building tested by a certified environmental hygienists. They can tell you not only where the mold problem is located but also what kind of mold you're dealing with.

2. Call the Specialists
Once you know you have black mold in your HVAC system, you need to hire mold remediation specialists. These professionals are qualified to clean ducts and get rid of the mold growth for good. They have the equipment and training necessary to do a thorough job and help you identify the problem that led to the mold issue in the first place.

3. Test the Results
After the cleanup process is complete, it's a good idea to have your building tested again. This validates that the mold growth is gone. Keep the test for your records just in case your insurance company requires proof of cleanup.
Just because you can't see black mold, that doesn't mean it's not there. Mold growth in your air ducts can drastically affect the air quality of your whole building, so it's important to address it as soon as you know it's a problem. With proper testing and mitigation, you can return your building to its former mold-free state.

Eliminating Odors After a Flood

4/29/2020 (Permalink)

Wet carpet, extracting water with vacuum Water damage in a Gallitzin, PA home

When your Gallitzin, PA, home is your castle, you still don’t want it to smell like an old, musty castle from the middle ages. Unfortunately, any type of water damage can quickly become a stinky and potentially harmful problem. Whether the issue is caused by floodwater, a burst pipe or leaky roof, it can quickly lead to mold growth. If flooding was the culprit, there is a good chance there was sewage loss, which means cleanup requires extra attention.

The Cleanup Process

While excessive water is an obvious problem, sometimes the smell can seemingly come from nowhere. If previous water damage was not properly repaired, it can mean long-term issues. At the first hint of water where it shouldn’t be or lingering odors, below are steps involved in correcting the problem.

Find the Source: If the issue isn’t readily visible, inspect areas prone to mold growth such as basements, bathrooms, attics, and around the plumbing.
Fix the Problem: Once the source is found, determine the reason behind the problem, which could include sewage backup, foundation cracks, broken pipes, or weather-related moisture.
Remove Affected Items: Any rugs, furniture, papers, towels and other porous items that have been saturated should be removed from the area to dry out. Depending on the source, some belongings may not be salvageable.
Repair Surrounding Damage: Regardless of the source, once there is odor, materials around the source have likely been infected with mold. This may include tearing out drywall, carpet, baseboards, and carpeting.
Eradicate the Mold: If it is a new problem and the mold is just beginning to form, it can be easy to clean and disinfect it. If it has spread, it is best to call a water damage and mold remediation expert to ensure it is properly taken care of.

Trusted Professionals
Minor water damage can often be easily cleaned up. It’s important to remember that if it isn’t done properly and quickly, the damage can spread. If odors begin to permeate your home, call a mold and water professional to help find the source and fix the problem. They have advanced tools to get your house back to normal and eradicate mold growth for good.

Why Having Business Interruption Insurance is a Good Idea

4/20/2020 (Permalink)

Causes of business interruption Having business interruption is a good idea

While no one ever wants to deal with fire damage at their office or business, advance preparation is necessary. In the event of a fire, your office space in Summerhill, PA will experience some level of fire damage as well as smoke and water damage that requires the expertise of a fire restoration services provider to handle. There are probably existing policies in place that cover damage to the structure and the contents therein. This means that the office building and damaged are covered, but what about the loss of income due to the fire and/or as your office is restored? You need an interruption insurance policy to cover the loss of income as part of a disaster recovery plan.

The Benefits of Business Interruption Insurance

Business interruption insurance or business income insurance, in this case, covers lost income due to the fire, either as a result of the event itself and/or during the restoration process. Such a policy usually covers:

This is the income that your company would’ve earned based on previous monthly financial statements.
Fixed costs. This includes any costs or expenses that you’re still incurring.
Temporary relocation. Your policy may include the expenses associated with moving to and conducting operations in a temporary location.
Training costs and commissions. Your business interruption coverage may include the costs of providing training to operate replacement machinery or equipment.
Miscellaneous expenses. This is reimbursement for costs beyond fixed costs that allow you to operate as your property is being restored.
Civil Authority Ingress / Egress Mandates. This covers loss of income due to government-mandated closures, which may include curfews and street closures that impact your operations.

Other Considerations
Give careful consideration to the needs of your operations following a disaster. Your coverage may not include all of the benefits listed above, which requires purchasing additional interruption insurance. Pay close attention to the beginning and end dates of coverage. The business interruption period usually covers the start of the disaster event until the day that your office is restored to pre-fire conditions. Also, look into contingent coverage that also covers damages to supplier or clientele that interrupts the way you conduct business.