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Typical Places Where Mold Shows up in Your Home

7/20/2020 (Permalink)

Mold growth around toilet It is common to find mold around toilets, sinks, or any other fixture attached to plumbing

There are certain things that no homeowner wants to come across in the house. Mold is certainly one of these. You've probably heard horror stories about this fungus and the challenges it can create. Even if you've never spotted mold at home, you should be aware of where it commonly grows. Then, inspect your house and check for any mold damage. A professional mold remediation technician can also help.

What Parts of the Home

Mold growth can occur just about anywhere on your Quincy Center, MA, property, but some places are more prone than others. Because mold thrives in moist, humid areas, think about areas where there could be water leaks. Some of these spots are:

  • The laundry room
  • The bathroom
  • Utility closets
  • The kitchen

Mold Loves These Surfaces
It doesn't take long for mold to grow and spread. Within 48 hours of a leak or flood, mold and mildew growth can start to take over. It can grow on any organic material. Some of the most common materials are drywall and wood. However, it is not rare to see mold on furniture or paper. You may often see mold on food as well. It can also spread outdoors, so be aware of the exterior of your home and other structures on your property.

How To Slow it Down
It is difficult to eliminate mold, but you can take steps to minimize its growth. The first thing you should do is check the plumbing in your house and make sure your pipes aren't looking. Inspect your roof, along with downspouts and rain gutters. Improving the airflow in your home will also go a long way toward reducing the risk of mold damage.
Take charge of your home and keep mold at bay. Be on the lookout for mold damage on walls and floors in all areas of your house. Understand how you can keep mold away.

How To Operate a Fire Extinguisher

7/2/2020 (Permalink)

People on preventive extinguisher training program, Safety concept. Focus on fire tray. Designated employees should be trained in the usage of a fire extinguisher

How To Operate a Fire Extinguisher

When a fire begins in a business, a number of actions can arrest its spread. A fire sprinkler system activates from heat or flames and sprays water over the incipient blaze. The advantage of this method is it works even when no-one is present in the building. Most other methods require a person to be present. One of the most effective methods is the use of a fire extinguisher. This device can accomplish a number of positive results:

  • It prevents a small fire from growing
  • It works in many situations
  • It minimizes fire damage
  • It is fairly used to operate

Most people can learn to use an extinguisher in a short period of time. Designated employees should be trained in the usage of a fire extinguisher; refresher training should be provided annually.

A Few Simple Steps
The main elements of using an extinguisher can be separated into four steps. The first step is to pull the pin to break the tamper seal. The pin is usually located near the top of the device. The second step is to aim the nozzle low at the base of the fire. Then the operator should squeeze the handle to release the extinguishing agent. Finally, the person should sweep the nozzle back and forth, continuing to squeeze the trigger until the fire is out or the extinguishing agent is depleted. If the fire continues to grow, the person should evacuate the premises.

A Couple of Reminders
Whether it is a kitchen fire or flames fueled by paper, a fire often leaves a sizable mess. Once the flames are out, a local fire mitigation team in North Quincy, MA, should be called to the scene. Highly-trained technicians will be able to clean the mess left by the fire extinguisher as well as take care of any soot or smoke damage. This will return the property to its pre-fire condition.

Keep Dryers Clean to Avoid a Lint Fire

6/8/2020 (Permalink)

using a bristle brush to clean the lint trap on a clothes dryer. A lint fire has the potential to happen anytime the dryer is operating

Laundry may be a chore, but there is nothing quite like freshly washed and dried clothes. If you start to experience damp clothes instead of dry ones, there may be an airflow problem that could result in a lint fire. Highly combustible, lint can quickly turn a small fire into a big one that requires a professional fire and smoke damage restoration expert to handle. Avoiding that situation is easy if you take a few precautions when doing laundry.

Keep It Clean

While it might seem like a clean appliance, a buildup of lint can quickly create a dryer fire. The following recommendations can help reduce the chances of that happening.

After every load, the lint filter should be cleaned. The back of the dryer should also be inspected for lint buildup.
The filter should be cleaned with a nylon brushing approximately two times a year.
The vent should be cleaned every three months.
If you are beginning to see signs of improper drying, consider having a professional inspection.
Ensure the outside vent has a cover to keep out moisture and dirt, as well as that is not blocked.

Additional Safety Tips
A lint fire has the potential to happen anytime the dryer is operating. Along with regular cleaning, consider the following to reduce the chances of a fire.

Ensure the lint filter is not loose or damaged.
Keep the loads light so it isn’t overloaded.
Avoid drying anything with foam, rubber, or plastic, including rugs with a rubber underside, as well as those with glass fiber materials.
Items that have come in contact with flammable liquids should be air-dried outdoors away from heat.
Only use the dryer while awake or at home.

Laundry may not seem like something that requires safety precautions, but not keeping them in mind can result in a lint fire. Fortunately, keeping it clean and using it properly can reduce the risk.

3 Reasons To Contact a Professional for Emergency Disaster Services

6/8/2020 (Permalink)

SERVPRO Team Picture SERVPRO is always open so you can contact them any time

3 Reasons To Contact a Professional for Emergency Disaster Services

Some business owners will never have to deal with an emergency disaster causing significant damage to their building. Unfortunately, you never know when disaster might strike; therefore, it’s best to be know how to handle emergency situations before they occur. While you may think you can handle clean up on your own, damage can be minimized when a 24-hour professional cleaning and restoration company is contacted.

1. Disasters Cause Damage
Fire, water, and mold are common emergency disaster situations. All three of these hazards require a fast response in order to minimize damage. Water is especially aggressive because it can spread through your Merrymount, MA, building quickly. Mold can begin in as little as 48 hours so it’s critical that flooding is handled immediately. SERVPRO is a professional cleaning and restoration company that is available around the clock and seven days a week. The company will respond to your call within one hour and can be at your business within four hours. This is because they have over 1,700 franchise locations across the U.S. and Canada.

2. Faster Response Equals Fewer Claims
Once a SERVPRO professional arrives at your business, they will inspect not only the structure of your building but all items as well. A professional will check for items that can be restored instead of replaced. The guiding motto is to restore when possible, but replace it when necessary. With this motto and a fast 24-hour response, your company will submit fewer claims.

3. Superior Cleaning and Restoration
SERVPRO is a preferred cleaning and restoration company for many insurance companies. All of their franchise locations undergo extensive training and they are certified by the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification. This certification ensures that your business is being taken care of by the best professionals in the industry.
The 24 hour response time offered by SERVPRO is ideal when it comes to reducing damage and loss caused by an emergency disaster. SERVPRO is always open so you can contact them any time.

Tips for Cleaning Items Damaged by Water

5/21/2020 (Permalink)

An underwater view in the flooding interior. Water in a home in Hough's Neck, MA

When you’ve suffered water in your home from flooding or a broken pipe, you not only have to deal with damage to the building structure and materials but damage to your home’s contents as well. From furniture to home goods to valuable documents, you’ll need to act quickly to maximize your chances of restoring these items to pre-water damage conditions. As a resident in Hough's Neck, MA, you hope to never have to deal with water in home issues, but having a plan may help you preserve your belongings and minimize further damage to them. A professional conservator will be most knowledgeable on how best to clean specific items.

Cleaning Specific Items

Here are some basic guidelines for recovering items damaged by water in home:

  • Rinse wet objects with water that is clear and clean.
  • Gently remove dry silt and debris with a soft brush or damp cloth.
  • Dry objects by air indoors as sunlight and heat can cause additional damage from drying too quickly.
  • Fight mold growth by reducing humidity with fans, open windows, and/or dehumidifiers.
  • Do not attempt to repair broken objects until they are completely dry.
  • Air-dry documents and other paper items.
  • Rinse metallic surfaces and metal objects with clear water and dry with a cloth that is clean and soft.

Remember, that a professional conservator will know the best way to clean certain items, especially those of high value.

Leaving it to the Pros
The reality is that you should hire a professional for repairing damage from water in home. Trained professionals not only know how to clean up damage to your home’s structure, but they’re also experts when it comes to cleaning your items as well. These experts are fully knowledgeable on cleanup methods including dry cleaning, dehumidification, and minimizing further damage. Their approach to your situation will be focused more on restoring items where possible instead of replacement which can be prohibitively expensive.

Getting Control Over a Continuously Flushing Toilet

5/6/2020 (Permalink)

Toilet, Flushing Water, close up Learn how to stop a toilet from continuously flushing

If you’ve ever used a public bathroom regularly, then you’ve probably come across the dreaded toilet that keeps flushing over and over again. Unlike residential commodes, commercial versions are controlled by a flushometer that runs water to flush. Most people just ignore the continuous flushing unless it’s obvious that a toilet overflow is imminent. In any case, if you’re responsible for a public bathroom in Germantown, MA, you should learn how to stop a toilet from continuously flushing.

Fixing the Flushometer

First, you’ll need to determine if the flushometer is manual or automatic. For a manual system, you should:

  • Locate the slot for the flushometer either to the left or the right and use a flathead screwdriver to shut off the water.
  • Use a wrench to loosen the top lid and screw off using your head.
  • Remove the flange cover and watch out for water spillage. Now you should see the gasket and a tiny weep hole.
  • Remove the gasket which will be covered in sediment, and clean it and the weep hole thoroughly. This blocked weep hole is what usually causes the continuous flushing.
  • Replace the gasket, flange cover, and top lid and use the screwdriver to turn the water back on.
  • If the toilet continues to flush, you may need a new gasket altogether. See if you can shut off the water to the bathroom to prevent toilet overflow or a toilet flood.

For an automatic flushometer, shut off the water as you would with a manual configuration. Press and hold down the chrome button and listen for two clicks two seconds apart. If you hear this, then you’ll need to clean or replace the diaphragm kit. If this has been done recently, you may need to tighten the solenoid.

Repairing Water Damage
As the person responsible for the bathroom, you’ll need to make sure the continuous flushing does not make the toilet overflow. If the problem is left unresolved, this could result in water damage. If that happens, reach out to a 24-hour provider of commercial water damage restoration to repair and restore your facility.

Do Commercial Insurance Policies Cover Mold?

5/6/2020 (Permalink)

Drywall covered with mold Does your insurance company cover mold damage?

Commercial insurance policies may cover mold under certain circumstances. If a covered peril has not caused damage to a building in Hough's Neck, MA, additional coverage for mold damage may be helpful for limiting out-of-pocket costs. Here are several ways to offset expenses associated with removal or remediation.

General Policies

A commercial property policy will specify conditions under which mold claims are covered. The standard commercial property policy of the Insurance Services Office has a fungus exclusion with exceptions for mold resulting from any of the following causes:

  • Civil commotion
  • Fire
  • Hail
  • Lightning
  • Sinkhole collapse
  • Smoke
  • Vandalism
  • Windstorm

Depending on the cause, a limited amount of mold insurance coverage may be available. A claim can be made for costs associated with repairing damage, replacing losses, and verification testing. An insurance agent can confirm whether the mold problem at a building meets policy requirements.

An endorsement or rider on a commercial insurance policy may be necessary to cover the cost of remediating mold damage. Additional coverage for mold can be helpful if the problem was not caused by a covered peril or if the costs of cleanup, removal, and remediation exceed the yearly fungus limit of a general policy.

Obtaining More Coverage
If a building is prone to developing mold, it may be worthwhile to add a mold endorsement onto a property policy. Restoring mold caused by flooding will require flood insurance. Additional coverage can be helpful for a structure with a history of water damage or a tendency to flood.

The average cost of mold remediation ranges from $15 to $30 per square foot. These costs can add up at a commercial building in Hough's Neck, MA. A property owner should determine whether limited coverage under a commercial insurance policy will offset a sufficient amount of cleanup, remediation, and testing expenses or whether endorsements or additional policies are necessary.

Information On Flood Zones: Are You In the Zone?

4/23/2020 (Permalink)

High above flood zone Flood zone in Adams Shore, MA

Before you obtain an insurance policy for your home in Adams Shore, MA, you should be aware of the flood zone near your property. If you live in a zone classified as high-risk, and you have a mortgage, you will need to purchase a flood policy.

How To Find Out if You Live in a High-Risk Zone

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) designates zones based on the flood risk of different geographical areas. To find out if you live in a high-risk flood zone, you can obtain a copy of the Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM) for your community. The zones depict how severe the risk for flooding would be in each area. Communities that participate in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) will then offer flood insurance to residents in designated zones.

How Zones Are Rated

Areas of high risk - There are several zones with a prefix of “A” that are considered high-risk areas. They are further classified by the bodies of water and flood control systems nearby, but most of them have the designation of a 1% chance of flooding annually and a 26% change that during the course of a 30-year mortgage a flood will occur.
Areas of high risk-coastal: Zones starting with a “V” depict the coastal areas of high risk with the same chances of floods as the “A” zones.
Areas of moderate risk - These zones, depicted with a “Z” or an “X” that is shaded, have the chance of floods every 100 to 500 years.
Areas of low risk - Zones with a “C” or an “X” that is unshaded, have the chance to flood greater than 500 years.

Your mortgage lender or insurance agent can also help you determine what flood insurance is required in your area.
Hopefully, you will never have to deal with significant water damage repair due to a storm, but if you live in a flood zone, it’s important to be prepared.

What Should Be in Your Company's First Aid Kit?

4/14/2020 (Permalink)

Kit supplies What should be in a first aid kit?

What Should Be in Your Company's First Aid Kit?

Does your company have a disaster response plan? If you don't, you shouldn't wait a moment more. Many elements make up such a plan. The plan should also account for a variety of emergencies. A first aid kit should be near the top of your list of what to include as you prepare for incidents such as a fire, flood or major storm. Before you start throwing together a kit, carefully consider the essential items that should be inside.

More About the Kits
Before getting into the specifics of what a first aid kit should include, know where you should keep it and how many you should have. These answers depend on the following factors:

  • How large your building is; how many floors and how square footage does it have?
  • How many employees your office has
  • How accessible they can be to employees

An emergency kit needs to account for different types of incidents and injuries that could happen in Montclair, MA. Make sure your kit has small, medium and large bandages. Don't skimp on the amount you place in your kit. The bandages should be durable or high quality.

Gauze Pads
for moderate bleeding, a bandage may not be enough to absorb all the blood coming from a wound. Include different sizes of gauze pads, packaged separately from the bandages. These should be ready for use on any part of the body.

Antiseptic Wipes
Before dressing a wound, you need to clean it. This protects the hurt individual and you. Make sure the wipes contain at least 60% alcohol.

Disposable Gloves
To keep you safe from blood-borne pathogens and bacteria, place vinyl or latex gloves in your kit. Make sure you have a variety of sizes.
This isn't a comprehensive list, but it is a good start to your first aid kit. Before first responders and professional disaster cleanup crews arrive, you can start helping people with urgent needs.

3 Ways Smoke Damage Can Linger

4/14/2020 (Permalink)

Ozone generator Ozone treatment can eliminate stubborn smoke odor

3 Ways Smoke Damage Can Linger

Smoke damage has a reputation for sticking around, whether a fire occurred at the affected building or an adjacent property in Adams Shore, MA. Many commercial property insurance policies include some coverage for the cost of eliminating smoke odors and residues. Professional smoke cleaning is often necessary to banish every trace of smoke, including these three common underlying causes of a lingering odor.

1. Smoke Particles In Ductwork
If smoke particles enter an HVAC system, odors may continue to circulate throughout a structure. Replacing an air filter can only go so far toward eliminating the presence of these particles. Up to 90% of wood smoke particles are smaller than one micron. Specialized filtration devices may be necessary for structures that have suffered fire damage or become contaminated by smoke from a nearby fire.

2. Residue On Surfaces
Smoke damage can also build up a layer on surfaces that causes discoloration and a persistent odor. Severe damage caused by smoke may even degrade finishes. Eliminating residual smoke from surfaces may involve the use of rubber chemical sponges, specialized solvents or even the use of a stain-blocking primer prior to repainting.

3. Smoke-Damaged Contents
The contents of a commercial structure such as furniture and office equipment may end up covered in smoke residue or trap particles that cause odors to linger. Topical treatments such as foam cleaning may be ideal for resolving combined smoke and soot damage. Air deodorization treatments such as running a hydroxyl generator or scheduling an ozone or thermal fogging treatment can eliminate stubborn smoke odor.
Smoke damage cleanup may be more or less involved depending on the location of a fire. If a fire broke out at a building in Adams Shore, MA, fire damage cleanup and restoration may overlap with eliminating residual smoke. Properties affected by a nearby fire may only require cleaning, deodorization, and filtration of smoke particles.