Understanding Black Water
When you have water damage or flooding in your home in Asheville, NC it's important to know what type of water you are dealing with to ensure proper and safe restoration. The insurance and restoration industries separate flood water into three categories:
• Category 3: "Black water" is the most dangerous of the categories and must be treated carefully by a knowledgeable expert. This water comes from local flooding, such as from rivers or hurricanes, and also plumbing floods that include sewage. It is contaminated with pathogens including bacteria, viruses, and parasites. Other chemical contaminates may also be in the water.
• Category 2:"Gray water" may have some pathogens and can still cause some health danger. A gray water flood is usually sourced from plumbing breaks with soiled water, like a clothes washer or toilet overflow without feces. Gray water can become a black water problem if exposed to the right temperatures and time.
• Category 1: "Clean water" usually comes from a clean pipe break, like a supply pipe or kitchen sink. This water damage is not harmful to humans unless it is not cleaned right away. Over time, this water would become more dangerous and be reclassified as gray or worse.
Black Water Cleaning
Black water cleaning must be meticulous. Immediate response is critical to prevent the development of mold. Once mold does develop, additional remediation efforts are needed to prevent further contamination and spread of mold in your home. Mold reproduces in just 48 hours and colonies in your water damaged home can quickly get out of control.
Cleanup of this type of water damage should also be done carefully. Protective gear is critical to protect skin, eyes and lungs from exposure. Strong knowledge on what to tear out and remove immediately is important to prevent further contamination and allow for proper drying of the remaining structure. Antimicrobials and disinfectant will be needed to remaining materials. Professional remediation specialists are beneficial in managing category 3 flood remediation due to the nature of the hazard and the importance of timely and effective removal. Visit http://www.SERVPROashevillewest.com for more information on water damage.
How To Clean a Dryer Exhaust Hose
You are doing laundry at your home in Asheville, NC and suddenly smell a burning odor. Panic spreads as you realize the smell is coming from your dryer. A lint fire is the last thing you may expect, but it can happen. Even though you clean the lint filter before each load as recommended, sometimes that is not enough to prevent a dryer fire. If you notice a decrease in the efficiency of your dryer, clean out the exhaust hose and vent by following the steps below.
1. Cut the power. Unplug the dryer cord from the outlet. This allows you to easily and safely move the dryer around for cleaning.
2. Detach the hose. The exhaust hose, an accordion shaped tube, connects from the back of the dryer to the wall. Depending on your dryer, either squeeze or unscrew a bolt to loosen the circular clamp. Remove the hose from both the wall and the dryer.
3. Empty the lint. Use a long brush or vacuum attachment to remove the accumulated lint from the detached exhaust hose. This step is key to preventing a lint fire.
4. Use a cleaning rod. Carefully insert the brush on the cleaning rod into the wall vent, rotating as you go. Remove, clean the brush and repeat until the lint is clear.
5. Attach the hose. Reattach the exhaust hose to the dryer and wall. Tighten the clamp, plug the dryer in and ensure there is no escaping air before pushing the dryer back against the wall.
6. Check the vent. The outside vent is typically a square vent with a screen. Remove the screen and take out any accumulated lint. Use a vacuum or brush to clean remaining lint and reattach the screen.
Properly clean the dryer exhaust hose at your home in Asheville, NC to keep your dryer running effectively and prevent a lint fire. If a fire occurs, immediately call 911 and exit the house. After the fire is contained, contact your insurance company and a fire restoration specialist to assess the fire damage and return your home to pre-fire condition. Visit http://www.SERVPROashevillewest.com for more information on fire damage.
Best Ways to Prevent Mold Damage
Are you a proactive business owner in Asheville, NC? If so, you may want to start addressing mold and water damage before either is a problem. Taking preventative steps can help reduce the need for a major cleanup in the future. With the help of your commercial mold cleanup professional, you can finish projects in your building that could help prevent mold damage.
• Tackle Repairs: Promptly taking on repair projects can stop mold growth before it happens. Even small issues, like a slow leaking pipe, should be taken care of right away. If the small leak is left unattended, water may start to pool within your walls or under your sink. This pool of water can encourage mold growth in as little as 24 to 48 hours.
• Perform Maintenance: You can't always stop a pipe from bursting. Sometimes disasters happen without any warning. However, performing regular maintenance on your plumbing may help prevent water damage that could lead to fungus growth. A functioning plumbing system is less likely to malfunction than one that has not been repaired or cleaned in decades.
• Remove Humidity: Humidity can be a big problem in any commercial building. Managing the humidity levels and removing excess moisture from the air are big steps in mold prevention. If you leave your building with 70 percent humidity for a long period of time, your chances of mold growing in that environment are high.
• Schedule an Inspection: Regular inspections can also help prevent mold damage. An inspector can check every nook and cranny of your building for signs of mold. If the fungus is caught early, the cleanup process will likely be less intensive than if the growth had spread.
Being proactive in the maintenance of your building is the best way to stop mold damage from ever taking place. Knowing where water damage is most likely and watching that spot can help keep your business running smoothly. Visit http://www.SERVPROashevillewest.com for more information on mold.
Coping With Damage From Water
Water damage is a problem that many homeowners in Asheville, NC will encounter at some point, whether it is the result of a small leak or a major deluge requiring the service of professionals. Immediate action will help to contain the damage and speed the restoration.
Protect yourself and others from injury by removing electric shock hazards and making efforts to avoid slipping and falling once the influx of water has abated. Remember that saturated materials will be heavier to move than when they were dry.
Utilizing a checklist will help organize your approach to water cleanup. Staying calm and working methodically are two important strategies to keep in mind.
• Pick up and remove any loose items that can be moved elsewhere.
• Remove electronics to a safe location for later inspection from water damage.
• Remove what upholstered furniture you can to a safe, dry place.
• If the room is carpeted, place foil under the legs of furniture that must stay in place.
• Remove throw rugs layered on carpets.
• Remove tabletop items such as lamps and ornaments.
• Wipe dry the surfaces and legs of wood furniture.
• Use your HVAC system, including air conditioning, to dry the room.
Drying out a flooded room will take time, and attempting to hurry it along will be counterproductive. Don’t be tempted to use a home vacuum cleaner to remove water. Moving air through the room will help, but if ceilings have sustained damage, it may not be safe to use a ceiling fan or even be in the room. Use the drying time to focus on the cause, be it broken pipes or appliance failure, and arrange for the necessary repair or replacement.
Though dealing with water damage is certainly a nuisance, it is not, in most situations, an insurmountable problem. Working with alacrity and focus will set things right more quickly than you might expect. Visit http://www.SERVPROashevillewest.com for more information on water damage.
Simple Steps for Preventing Water Damage in Your House
The first step is to examine the appliances in your home for leaks.
Asheville water damage can slowly destroy a building. A problem many homeowners face is that there are multiple points throughout the house where water leaks can occur. This can make detecting and stopping Asheville water damage difficult. You should know about some simple steps to help prevent water damage in your home.
Examine Appliances for Leaks
The first step is to examine the appliances in your home for leaks. Appliances that use water such as washing machines and dishwashers can potentially cause a large amount of damage over time. You want to look at the hoses and connections that attach the appliances to the water supply. Feel the hoses and look for leaks, corrosion or other damage. Replace any damaged or leaking hoses immediately. You also want to check the ground under and around appliances in case there is other damage inside allowing water to escape.
Thoroughly Inspect Your Plumbing
One of the largest potential sources of Asheville water damage in your home is the plumbing attached to your sinks and fixtures. Even a small leak can release gallons of water that will rot away the floors and structure of your house over several months. You need to thoroughly inspect your plumbing on a regular basis. This does not take long. Look at the pipes under your sinks, faucets and around your showers. Look behind your toilets. You want to look for any unexplained moisture, rusted connections or signs of damage on the floor and walls. If you do find a problem, then call a licensed plumber immediately to repair the pipes.
Maintain Your Water Heater
Your water heater can do damage to your house if it is not maintained. Your water heater is not intended to last forever. As it starts to wear down over the years, it will become more of a threat. The seals and structure of your water heater will begin to fail. This can allow water to constantly leak out and onto the floor beneath. The result could be foundation damage if the water heater is in the basement or damage to the floor in other parts of the home. You want to maintain your water heater, have it inspected every year or two and replace it every ten to fifteen years.
Know the Location of Your Main Shutoff Valves
A final step is to know the location of the main shutoff valves in your home. These are the valves responsible for allowing water to enter your home from a municipal supply or well. Memorize the location so that you can quickly cut off the water to your house if a major leak occurs. This can stop water damage from getting worse. Take a close look at the valves and make certain you understand how to use them.
Our Water Damage Restoration Process
Every water damage situation is a little different, and requires a unique solution, but the general process stays the same. The steps listed below illustrate our process for the “typical” water damage emergency.
Step 1: Emergency Contact
Step 2: Inspection and Damage Assessment
Step 3: Water Removal/Water Extraction
Step 4: Drying and Dehumidification
Step 5: Cleaning and Repair
Step 6: Restoration
Facts About Saving Water Damaged Electronics
Whether you live in Tallahassee, Florida, or Asheville, NC water damage can have a devastating effect on your company’s electronics. That is because water contains sodium, electrolytes, and minerals that are considered effective electrical conductors. So, when previously flooded electronics are dried and plugged in again, the remaining minerals can create connections that should not occur.
If the electronic device was plugged in at the time it encountered the water, the chances are slim it can be saved. The active electricity can create a current through the minerals in the water to damage the circuit and burn the device. If the device was not plugged in, there are generally four ways to tell if the item can be saved. They are:
• Was the device plugged in?
• How long was the device submerged?
• What type of battery is in the device?
• What type of water flooded the area?
Additionally, some unplugged devices still contain power by using a battery. Each unit should be individually checked and cleaned to see if the flooded electronics are salvageable within the machine.
Flood water is generally classified as dirty water. Whether it drips from the ceiling, overflows from a toilet, or rushes in from the river, the water can pick up contaminates as it passes over and through areas. After tainting the liquid with chemicals, dirt, and bacteria, the fluid can become seriously dirty and can coat the device with unwanted materials, thus causing electronic damage.
One of the first things to do after a flood is to remove standing water. Sadly, the longer the machines are exposed to the dirty water the more the devices can corrode. The minerals in the water can also begin to accumulate on critical circuits and destroy the connections as the liquid covers the device.
Water can damage and destroy flooded electronics. By quickly removing water and checking electrical connections, it can be easy to decide whether an item may be saved or not. Unfortunately, the only way to tell for sure is to clean the device and check the connections. Visit http://www.SERVPROashevillewest.com for more information on commercial water damage.
Simple Ways To Avoid Storm Damage in Your Office
There are some things in life you can’t control, but you can certainly prepare for the consequences. For example, you can’t stop a heavy storm from coming, but you can get ready for its effects. In the workplace, if you have the right measures in place, you can help minimize storm damage to your office and avoid injury and heavy costs in the process.
Maintain Your Grounds
Natural and man-made items on your business property can adversely affect numerous systems and components of your workplace, and that could cause significant damage. It’s important to work closely with your grounds crew to ensure you are properly maintaining the area:
• Trim trees so branches are far from windows.
• Ensure tree roots are not growing under your foundation and threatening pipes.
• Check the rain gutters on the building to ensure they are diverting water away from the facility.
Keep an Eye on the Weather
Monitoring the weather sounds simple enough, but it’s easy to overlook. Be aware of upcoming problems such as an impending heavy storm or heavy rain. These events could pose problems at your Asheville, NC office. If you know about them in advance, you can double check your HVAC and plumbing systems as well as other key areas.
Stay Warm and Dry
The last thing you want during a big storm or major cold spell is problems with the plumbing system or HVAC. Regularly maintain and inspect these systems with the help of a commercial HVAC and plumbing specialist. This can help prevent a pipe break and avoid flooding. A properly working HVAC system can contribute to providing a safe environment for your employees during adverse conditions.
You may not be able to prevent troubling weather from affecting your workplace, but you can prepare for the results of a heavy storm or other situation. Use these tips to mitigate issues and avoid major cleanup and costly restoration. Visit http://www.SERVPROashevillewest.com for more information on storm damage.
3 Ways To Protect a Commercial Building's Roof After a Fire
Give SERVPRO a call after commercial fire damage.
When your Asheville, NC commercial building is damaged by a fire, it can be difficult to know how to proceed in the aftermath. Smoke and fire issues may have affected your inventory and the building’s electrical and plumbing systems, which may need extensive repairs. One challenge you might be facing is how to protect your building’s damaged roof until fire cleanup and restoration can take place. However, there are a few methods you can use to prevent further problems with this structure and lower repair costs as well.
1. Use Emergency Tarps
If your building’s roof has been damaged by fire or by actions taken to put out a blaze, covering holes and other affected areas can protect it and the interior of your building as well. Snow, rain and hail can inflict further damage and weaken fire-damaged parts of the roof, which can increase the risk of collapse. Calling in emergency tarp services to protect the structure can also guard the interior of your building from the elements, especially during the winter months.
2. Have the Roof Professionally Inspected
You can help reduce further damage to your building’s rooftop by only allowing access for roof repair and inspection specialists. The fewer people who walk around near the damage, the lesser the strain these areas endure. Only contractors, insurance adjusters and the building’s owner should have access to the roof until repairs can be made.
3. Include Interior Protection
If you are waiting for a fire cleanup and restoration company to come in and make repairs to your building, you may want to clear any vulnerable interior areas of inventory or equipment. While tarps provide some measure of protection, moisture can still seep in and affect valuable items. Clearing these rooms can reduce the risk of damage to computers and other sensitive machinery.
Protecting your Asheville, NC commercial building’s roof after a fire can help reduce repair costs and make fire cleanup easier. This can give you peace of mind as you continue with the restoration of your property and work to get your company up and running once more. Visit http://www.SERVPROashevillewest.com for more information on commercial fire damage.
Help I Have Mildew in My Bathroom
Give SERVPRO a call if you notice mold growing in your home.
Have you noticed mildew growth in your Asheville, NC bathroom? Tile and grout commonly house black bathroom mildew. While the growth is troublesome, you can easily get rid of it by scheduling regular cleanings with a mold removal team. As you tackle this issue, you need to know a few things.
• Why is it there?
• What cleaners can get rid of it?
• How do you stop it from coming back?
Use this guide to help you better understand how to deal with this unfortunate mold problem.
Why Is It There?
Mildew, like other forms of mold, is typically introduced into a space due to a humidity problem. Bathrooms are notorious for having major issues with too much moisture. Whether you take steamy showers, have a faucet leak or splash bath water out of the tub, your bathroom could be damp enough to welcome mildew growth. If this moisture is left unaddressed, you may see various fungus growths in your space.
What Cleaners Can Get Rid of It?
Do you prefer natural cleaning methods? Do you want to use strong cleaners to get to the root of the problem? Regardless of the method you prefer, your mold remediation experts may offer a few different cleaners that can be used to get rid of bathroom mildew. The cleaning process is similar for both types of cleaners. You have to apply the solution, scrub the affected areas and rinse the cleaner away.
How Do You Stop It From Coming Back?
Once you have cleaned your bathroom of this growth, you likely don’t want to see it again. You may be able to prevent mildew by adding extra ventilation in your bathroom or finding other ways to control moisture. Wiping down the shower walls after showering can help remove extra droplets from the environment. Cleaning up spills and fixing leaks is another important step in prevention.
Bathroom mildew is a common problem in homes across Asheville, NC. Regular cleaning and professional assistance can help you manage this issue. Visit http://www.SERVPROashevillewest.com for more information on mold.
Ways To Prevent a Cigarette Fire In Your Home
Give SERVPRO a call after fire damage.
These days, there is a myriad of ways for a house fire to start in Asheville, NC but the most common cause is reportedly through the improper handling of cigarettes. Anything from drapery going up in flames due to a lingering cigarette butt or an ashtray fire spreading outwards across your home can cause a hazardous safety issue and significant fire cleanup. Here are various ways to prevent a cigarette fire from occurring in your residence, keeping you and your family safe from the underlying dangers of cigarette use in the home.
? Choose to smoke outdoors. If you have the option of smoking outdoors, this can be the best method for eradicating fire damage and preventing odor build-up inside of your home. Keep any ashtrays away from the sides of the residence and make sure to extinguish the cigarette butt fully before walking away.
? Teach your children to stay away from any cigarettes. Since kids are naturally predisposed to be curious by fire, storing all of your cigarettes, matches, lighters and any other paraphernalia out of their reach is crucial for everyone’s safety.
? Don’t lounge in highly flammable areas while smoking. The most dangerous areas for starting a cigarette fire can be in the living room (on upholstered furniture or near drapery) and in the bedroom (on flammable bedding and mattresses). Therefore, avoiding these places while smoking is a key preventative measure.
? Only use stable ashtrays and fill them with sand. Never use an ashtray that is frequently known to tip over or fall easily, which can cause consistent ashtray fire hazards. Find one that’s stable and fill it with sand to ensure that every butt you put out is fully extinguished.
If you’re a smoker who enjoys lighting up in your Asheville, NC home, learning the ways to avoid a cigarette fire is vital to the safety and protection of your home and everyone in it. Visit http://www.SERVPROashevillewest.com for more information on fire damage.