Mold: Should I Be Worried
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Should I Be Worried
What Is Mold? Mold is a part of the kingdom fungi and mold is a general term to describe many different types of fungi. Specifically those that grow in colonies and reproduce with spores. Some molds do not affect people and others only affect some people. To find more information about molds affecting your body you should contact a doctor or ask your physician. So if a mold does not affect people should we still be worried about it in our homes or businesses. The short answer is yes, but then the question is why. Let’s take a look at molds role in nature. Mold is here to help decompose natural materials like wood, grass, or animals. Take a look around at your home, what are the materials used to build it. Wood studs in the walls, paper sheets over gypsum board. Plywood, or composite wood sheeting, and baseboards. Well now you are asking why is my home not overtaken by mold already? The answer we keep our homes dry.
Mold comes into play when there is a water intrusion either from a roof leak, a broken pipe, or over flow from a toilet, shower or sink. Don’t be scared just because you just had a little water spill on your floor that can dry up quickly and mold won’t take root. But when water floods though your home, not taking the proper steps, quickly, can cause the moisture to dry slowly, and then mold can take root in your home. Having trained professionals, Like SERVPRO of South Garland, inspect your home after a water leak can let you know where the excess moisture is and they can help you come up with a plan to get the moisture out of your home so you can be safe and your home can be safe as well.
If there is water rushing through your home, or you just want to be sure all the water is dry from the loss you had a week ago give SERVPRO of South Garland a call at (972)278-7871 today.
Commercial Water Damage: What to Expect
We have the expertise to do it right the first time.
Commercial Water Loss What to Expect
When SERVPRO South Garland is called to a commercial water job we have a plan.
Our IICRC certified technicians will arrive to your property with the proper equipment, tools and knowledge to ensure an accurate diagnosis.
Our technicians will then analyze the damage, and record the proper conditions for you to report to your insurance company. At this time, our technicians will identify the category of water and communicate their findings to you.
Create a Drying Plan:
Next, our technicians will create a drying plan that will meet the needs of the areas affected. Many times, there will be limiting factors, such as property hours, needs of the business or owner’s requirements that our technicians will need to consider when creating their plan of action.
Extraction and Drying:
After the drying plan is established, our technicians will begin the drying process. This includes water extraction, placing of commercial-grade dehumidifiers, desiccant technology, air movers or heat systems. The use of equipment will be determined during the analysis phase, and may change to meet the different requirements of the job.
Once the water is extracted and the equipment is in place, daily reports are taken to show drying progress in each of the affected areas. These reports are used to show the insurance company that drying is taking place, and help support and justify the drying plan that was initially created.
Unsalvageable Materials Are Removed:
We certainly try to dry all of the damaged materials, but factors due to saturation levels or other damage may hinder effective drying. In those situations, we will remove unsalvageable materials and items. Proper documentation will be given to you that you can forward to your insurance company.
Completion of Work:
Once work has been completed, we will conduct a final walk-through with the assigned on-site contact and our company. This ensures that all parties are aware of the completed work and are satisfied with the finished outcome.
When a commercial property experiences flooding, there is usually more than one stakeholder involved. You have tenants, owners, insurance companies and employees to work with in order to get the job done. At SERVPRO of South Garland, we Service The Garland Texas area, with the goal of building our wonderful community.. We have restored many different commercial buildings from flood damage, and have the expertise required to get the job done right the first time!
If you require our services for your property please give us a call at (972)278-7871
General Mold Information
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Here at SERVPRO of South Garland we hear all kinds of misinformation about mold. We want you to be informed and to have an understanding not a fear of this organism and its impacts on your home. So to start lets learn a little about mold in general.
- What exactly is mold? Molds are living microorganisms and forms of fungi like yeasts and mushrooms. Now that we have a basic definition of mold, let’s start debunking some common mold myths!
- Most of the information you find in the media and internet on “Black Mold” is completely bogus and horribly misleading. The fact is that the color of the mold as it appears to the naked eye cannot tell you anything about whether it’s toxic or not. This brings us to point #3:
- With over 100,000 species, mold comes in about any size, shape, and color you can think of, making it virtually impossible to tell what type of mold you have without a microscope.
- While there are over 100,000 species of mold, the good news is that you do NOT need to know what kind of mold you have to eliminate mold growth. Allmolds are treated in the same way. Since mold is a living organism, it requires food and water to survive. But controlling mold by eliminating food sources is very difficult since mold can feed off building materials, and the tiniest of organic matter like dirt, dust and debris. Thus the best way to eliminate mold problems is to eliminate water problems.
- Eliminating mold problems is important because the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) estimates that we spend 90 percent of our time indoors, and that the air we breathe indoors is more polluted than the outdoor air. So indoor air quality matters a lot to our health.
- Mold is a natural organism that serves many useful purposes in daily life. It breaks down dead organic matter, helps make certain cheeses, and antibiotics like Penicillin. Mold only becomes a problem when it is found in elevated levels. Then, mold removal and remediation should be performed.
- Molds reproduce by releasing microscopic airborne spores that find their way to a habitable surface. Molds can grow on almost anything, including most building materials such as drywall, insulation, wood, etc. If enough water is present on these surfaces, the mold grows into active colonies and releases spores into the air.
- While mold grows most easily on porous organic surfaces such as drywall and unfinished wood, it can also grow on inorganic surfaces such as metal, plastics and glass when organic nutrients such as dust and debris are along with moisture.
- You can be exposed to mold by breathing in mold spores or touching and/or ingesting moldy items. And under ideal conditions, active visible mold colonies can grow in as little as one or two days.
- There are currently no federal guidelines specifying what constitutes an unsafe level of mold. But if you see visible mold growth or smell it, your environment almost certainly has elevated levels of mold.
- If nobody knows how bad mold is, should you care? Yes! A moldy home is unappealing to buyers, and it slowly destroys your home. It should be removed or treated as soon as possible.
- Tiny amounts of mold are in every breath you take. Only the cleanest environments, such as a sterilized hospital organ transplant room, are mold-free. A home will continue to have low levels of mold even after mold removal and mold remediation is finished.
- Everyone responds to mold differently, but certain groups such as the elderly, young children and people with autoimmune disorders are thought to be more at risk for the common allergenic symptoms associated with mold.
- Many homeowners’ insurance policies specifically list mold as an exclusion and will not cover mold-related claims. There are insurance policies that will cover mold related claims. You should not assume your policy covers mold. Chances are, it doesn’t. If you want mold insurance, ask for it, and review your policy carefully to make sure you understand what is and is not included.
Here at SERVPRO of South Garland your family’s health and well being are of the utmost importance to us. If you can see visible mold in your home give us a call at (972)278-7871. We want your home to be a safe place for you and your family to relax, and rest.
What Would You Do If...?
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“What would you do if……?” Emergency Ready Preparedness, knowing what your company should do in case of an emergency is the place to start. The sprinklers go off in the middle of the night, who takes charge, who calls who? Do you know where and how to turn off the water during freezing temperatures when the pipes burst and flood the offices or the apartments? Do your tenants know who to call? Are you really prepared?
These are the questions that everyone should know the answers to considering it is wintertime and the freezing weather is upon us. Broken pipes can cause flooding and flooding is ranked as one of the most common and widespread disasters. This includes natural flooding as well, heaving rains from hurricanes to melting snow is a potential for flood damage.
On average, floods cost $6 billion in annual losses in the U.S. Flooding can also result from plumbing failures, frozen pipes and damaged structures. Flood damage can affect your business operation in a variety of ways and can range in size from being isolated to a single room to entire floors being fully submerged. In Texas, Hurricane Harvey damages could cost up to $180 Billion. That’s Billion. Some companies may not recover, like in Louisiana with Hurricane Katrina in 2005, many businesses are still closed.
Space heaters cause about one-third of all winter house fires and 80 percent of all winter heating fire deaths, according to the National Fire Protection Association. Everyone should be made aware of the safety issues with heaters as well as how and where to turn off the electricity in case of an emergency.
But at SERVPRO we want to help you recover by working hard to help you and your company be prepared so we can say our motto, “Like it never even happened.”
Be Prepared for Storms
Storm will come Be Prepared and then Call SERVPRO of South Garland
Rain, Hail, Tornadoes and Floods
These events are common here in our North Texas Lives, and they are something that every homeowner has or will have to deal with. So how can you protect yourself during a storm?
General home maintenance
- Check your roof regularly to make sure it’s in good condition
- Keep gutters, downpipes and drains clear
- Remove tree branches that are close to your house
- Fix any corrosion, loose fittings and rotting or termite-affected timber
- Secure loose items around your property
General home safety preparations
- Ensure your home, contents and car insurance is adequate and current
- Identify the safest room in which to shelter during a storm
- Learn how to safely turn off your power, water and gas
- Keep water containers, a camping stove and fuel safely on-hand
If you live in a flood-prone area
- Store poisons and garden chemicals well above ground level
- Identify indoor items you’ll need to raise or empty if flood threatens
- Relocate power points well above previous flood levels
If you live in a storm or cyclone-prone area
- Get a professional builder to assess the structural integrity of your house
- Fit shutters or metal screens to your windows for added protection
IMPORTANT SAFETY TIP:
Do not use portable generators in enclosed spaces. They produce carbon monoxide – a colorless and odorless gas that can be harmful to humans
After the storm passes if there was damage from the storm or water inside your home call SERVPRO of South Garland at (972)278-7871
Mold, Mold, Mold...
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Here at SERVPRO of South Garland we see mold issues all the time, and the people who are having to deal with a remediation because of it getting widespread always ask what they could have done to prevent the problem in the first place. Most of these places have had a leak either slowly so no one noticed it until the mold brought it to their attention, or there was a reason that the flood could not be taken care of immediately after the event. Some of those reason could be the home owner was away from the home on vacation and the leak was not discovered, the area was flooded and no one could get to the home for a few days, or the home owner thought that it was not severe enough to cause the damage in the first place.
So here are 3 ways to keep mold from infesting your home.
- The vent in the bathroom is for when hot water is running to get the humidity out. Run it at least 30 minutes after showers or baths to prevent water from being absorbed into the drywall.
- If there is a small spill clean it up and put a fan on it if it was in the carpet.
- If there was a large water leak call a professional to make sure that your home is thoroughly dry and safe from mold taking root in your home.
Basically if the home stays dry then no mold can grow in the structure. But if it is wet for a while then it can start. The longer that the problem is sitting the more drastic the solution could be. In nature mold is a decomposing organism that eats what it is growing on, so if you have mold then it has to be eating something, and that something is probably your house.
If you have a mold infestation give SERVPRO of South Garland a call we will be happy to help you get started on you mold project today.
Commercial Structural Drying
When Less Down Time Is a Must Call SERVPRO of South Garland at (972)278-7871
Commercial Structural Drying
When flooding leaves your commercial structure water-logged, quickly drying it out is critical to prevent long term structural damage and potential health issues associated with mold and pathogen growth. Water damage is a project best handled by experts who have the expertise and equipment necessary to quickly and effectively dry out commercial structures.
Commercial-grade structural drying equipment is designed to tackle the problem from a variety of angles, quickly and efficiently removing water before long-lasting, damage can be done.
Commercial Structural Drying Equipment
There are a number of different types of equipment used during the structural drying process, to quickly remove moisture from you structure, including:
Centrifugal Air Movers – air movers simply move the air around, helping the structure to dry quicker. When air stagnates, it becomes saturated, making drying take longer.
Axial Air Movers- These are target open spaces and give a lot of air movement; however, theses air movers do not give a lot of pressure compared to the other type.
LGR Dehumidifiers – dehumidifiers remove moisture from the air. When too much moisture is in the air, drying cannot occur, so commercial grade dehumidifiers are important to the drying process.
Desiccant Dehumidifiers- These dehumidifiers are normally used when it is either really cold or very big, when the size of a space exceeds what can be done effectively by LGR Dehumidification then a Desiccant may be brought in.
Convective Heat Drying Trailers – heat drying trailers pump dry heat into a structure, speeding up the drying process, this process should only be used when the temperature in the building is not able to be maintained by the buildings air handing system.
HEPA Air Scrubbers – air scrubbers will help to remove particles and pathogens from the air that can contribute to mold and bacteria growth.
Negative Air Machines – negative air machines help to contain mold, dust particles, and odor within a containment barrier. This will help keep the damage isolated to the area it occurred in, decreasing restoration times and improving workplace health most of these machines have a HEPA filter.
Water Damage Restoration From SERVPRO of South Garland
If you have experienced water damage at your business in the Dallas region and need commercial structural drying and water extraction, contact SERVPRO of South Garland today! Our air drying equipment is state-of-the-art and can get your facility clean and dry faster than you thought possible. We will provide you with a comprehensive assessment of the damage that has been done to your property and an estimate of the cost and amount of time it will take to repair. We will assist you with your insurance claims to ensure that everything is filed correctly so that your repairs can begin as quickly as possible.
Contact us today by calling at (972)278-7871 today to get started!
SERVPRO of South Garland provides water damage repair in The Dallas Area.
Control Your Mold
If mold is out of control call SERVPRO of South Garland at (972)278-7871
One of the questions that we get asked most often is, “how do you prevent mold?” Preventing mold, and specifically black mold from growing in your home is a hot topic these days with interest in indoor air quality a health priority. Mold is a fungus that is constantly present throughout our homes and offices, so anyone who has an expectation that they can remove it completely should understand that this is nearly impossible, with a few exceptions (think NASA, surgical operating rooms, etc.). The war on mold is never-ending. So instead of asking how do you prevent mold, try to change your expectations and instead ask how do you reduce mold to healthier levels. In this article, we will discuss how to prevent mold and how your secret weapon in combating mold growth in your home might surprise you – it isn’t bleach or 409 – it’s your air conditioner!
Preventing Mold in Your Home.
Before you can answer the question, “how do you prevent mold?” you must first have an understanding of what mold is and what it needs to live. Mold reproduces by spreading its spores into the air which then settle into a substrate, forming new colonies and repeating the cycle. It requires three components for it to grow: a viable organic compound, warmth and moisture. The key to combating mold and reducing the amount of mold in your home is to remove any one of these three components. This will help break the cycle and retard the growth of mold and other funguses. Mold cannot grow without an organic substrate or without moisture and it needs warmth to thrive.
4 Tips to Prevent Mold Growth
- Keep your air conditioner on at all times to prevent the growth of mold.
Ever wonder why your air conditioner is called an air conditioner, instead of an air cooler? Simply put, it doesn’t just cool your air, but it conditions your air by removing moisture. Remember that moisture is one of the three required ingredients that are essential for mold growth, so keep your AC system on at all times if possible
- Ensuring that your attic has fans will minimize mold growth in your attic.
Attic fans can be electrical or wind powered, but don’t get too wrapped around the axel on this because either will do. Your attic isn’t air conditioned like your house is, so keep it well ventilated to reduce the amount of mold that can grow and spread into your home or business.
- Vacuum regularly to remove organic sources of mold growth
Dust is a great substrate for mold growth. Remember that one of the three requirements for mold to thrive is an organic substrate. Think about it, how would your garden look if you removed all of the soil? It seems obvious with the garden example, but on a microscopic level it is also true. Vacuuming regularly removes dust, pollen and other organic compounds from the carpet. It also disturbs what it doesn’t pick up into the air column where your air conditioner can quickly filter it out.
- Water leaks promote mold growth, so make sure you fix any leaks in your home.
Even the smallest leak can support mold growth, and controlling moisture is part of the mold trifecta. Just as with the garden example above, how would your garden look if you didn’t water it – ever. Water is probably the biggest contributing factor to mold growth in the home so take the time to fix even the smallest leaks. A drop or two here or there under your sink might not seem like much, but after a drop per minute for an entire day, how much water would be there fueling mold growth? What about after a week or a month? Fix all of your leaks and make no exceptions and if you don’t know how then choose a good plumber
In the end, you will never be able to remove 100% of mold from your home, but following these 5 tips can help control its growth and ensure your family’s health and comfort. Figuring out how to prevent mold isn’t rocket science, so with a little preventative maintenance and effort mold doesn’t stand a chance
If mold is out of control in your home give SERVPRO of South Garland a call today at (972)278-7871 we are mold remediation licensed and can help you eliminate the mold problem that you have.
Get Your Home Prepared
Before A Fire
Create and Practice a Fire Escape Plan
In the event of a fire, remember that every second counts, so you and your family must always be prepared. Escape plans help you get out of your home quickly.
Twice each year, practice your home fire escape plan. Some tips to consider when preparing this plan include:
- Find two ways to get out of each room.
- If the primary way is blocked by fire or smoke, you will need a second way out. A secondary route might be a window onto a neighboring roof or a collapsible ladder for escape from upper story windows.
- Only purchase collapsible ladders evaluated by a nationally recognized laboratory, such as Underwriters Laboratory (UL).
- Make sure that windows are not stuck, screens can be taken out quickly, and that security bars can be properly opened.
- Practice feeling your way out of the house in the dark or with your eyes closed.
- Windows and doors with security bars must have quick release devices to allow them to be opened immediately in an emergency. Make sure everyone in the family understands and practices how to properly operate and open locked or barred doors and windows.
- Teach children not to hide from firefighters.
A properly installed and maintained smoke alarm is the only thing in your home that can alert you and your family to a fire 24 hours a day, seven days a week. A working smoke alarm significantly increases your chances of surviving a deadly home fire.
- Install both ionization AND photoelectric smoke alarms, OR dual sensor smoke alarms, which contain both ionization and photoelectric smoke sensors
- Test batteries monthly.
- Replace batteries in battery-powered and hard-wired smoke alarms at least once a year (except non-replaceable 10-year lithium batteries)
- Install smoke alarms on every level of your home, including the basement. The U.S. Fire Administration recommends installing smoke alarms both inside and outside of sleeping areas.
- Always follow the manufacturer’s installation instructions when installing smoke alarms.
- Replace the entire smoke alarm unit every 8-10 years or according to manufacturer’s instructions.
- Never disable a smoke alarm while cooking – it can be a deadly mistake. Open a window or door and press the “hush” button, wave a towel at the alarm to clear the air, or move the entire alarm several feet away from the location.
Smoke Alarm Safety People with Access or Functional Needs
- Caregivers are encouraged to check the smoke alarms of those who are unable to do it themselves.
- Audible alarms for visually impaired people should pause with a small window of silence between each successive cycle so that they can listen to instructions or voices of others.
- Smoke alarms with a vibrating pad or flashing light are available for the hearing impaired. Contact your local fire department for information about obtaining a flashing or vibrating smoke alarm.
- Smoke alarms with a strobe light outside the home to catch the attention of neighbors, and emergency call systems for summoning help, are also available.
More Fire Safety Tips
- Sleep with your door closed.
- Only those trained in the proper use and maintenance of fire extinguishers should consider using them when appropriate. Contact your local fire department for information on training in your area and what kind to buy for your home.
- Ask your local fire department to inspect your residence for fire safety and prevention.
Remember if you have had a fire and it was put out by the fire department there could also be hidden water damage, it is important that your home gets back to a safe living condition quickly. If soot stays in the materials in the home it can cause significant damage. You need our services now, call us at (972) 278-7871. As a locally owned business, SERVPRO of South Garland is dedicated to restoring the homes of our neighbors.
What is Bio or Trauma Cleanup
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SERVPRO of South Garland’s Trauma Cleanup Specialists are Here to Help You
If something unexpected happens on your property, and you don’t know what to do, it’s a great idea to call SERVPRO of South Garland. In cities like Dallas, even the most peaceful neighborhoods can become the stage for an unseemly event. If this happens to your property, we are here for you! SERVPRO of South Garland will be there for you, and will help you through a difficult time by taking care of one more thing, so that you have one less thing about which to worry. Getting in touch with SERVPRO of South Garland is easy, and there are a variety of services that they offer to anyone with difficulties on their property.
Natural Death Clean Up
If you have any person living with you, particularly a person of advanced age, you are probably mentally preparing for the day that they leave you forever. When this happens, it is devastating. Fortunately, a loved one’s memories live on long after they pass away, and there is nothing better than to continue to love the memories that you shared with your now-gone loved one. SERVPRO of South Garland understand that this is a difficult time for you, and for your family, and will handle the matter of moving your loved one’s remains with sensitivity and care. Making this process easier on you is the reason that you call a crime scene cleaner, so don’t hesitate to reach out.
Violent Crime on Your Property
Crime scene cleaners’ main purpose is taking away the evidence of a traumatic incident on your property. If someone is seriously or mortally wounded in your front yard, you should never be the one to clean the mess. The mess will be a difficult one for your family to deal with, and can make it uncomfortable to go about your daily lives. Call SERVPRO of South Garland for an appointment, so that you can get on with your lives in peace.
Suicide Clean Up
Suicides devastate families. Suicide is usually the end result of a long history of depression and anxiety. However it happens, when suicide happens in a home shared with other people, it is a difficult event to mitigate. For families that lose a loved one in the home, this is a time of grieving and tears. For roommates who lose a friend, this is a time of grieving and confusion. Landlords, though sad they will be to lose a tenant, should reach out to a local crime scene cleaner to handle the remains of their former tenant. Crime scene cleaners will probably be called by the family first, but even the kindest crime scene cleaners know they don’t have the ability to bring back loved ones.
If you have a bio hazard or trauma scene that is in need of cleaning reach out to the companionate cleanup technicians at SERVPRO of South Garland a call today (972)278-7871.