Three Places to Check for Mold
A mold colony grew and spread quickly in this laundry room, hidden by the washing machine.
Just hearing the word “mold” can cause us all to cringe. It’s odorous, unsightly, and even dangerous to our health. Mold growth can appear quickly, so knowing where to look and what areas are best to practice preventive measures in can help give you peace of mind.
Here are the top three areas to check regularly for mold growth:
Everyone knows that mold likes water and wet areas, making your bathrooms a hotbed for mold growth. Most bathrooms are cleaned thoroughly at least once a week, this is a great time to check for mold. Look in the least traveled areas, such as corners of the linen closet, behind the toilet, under the sink. If there are, or have been, any leaks in these places in the past, these areas are in danger until they are fully dry. Investing in a dehumidifier for your bathroom can assist in the prevention of mold growth.
This area of your home is also a watery place, it is used more than any other area in the house besides the bath. Watch out for spills and leaks and clean them up immediately to ensure that they are not attracting mold spores. Spores are always in our air and cannot be removed, the trick to preventing mold growth is not giving them a place to land and settle.
The laundry room
Because the laundry room houses large appliances, it also has nooks and crannies that are not cleaned often. Add to that the humidity in the air and possible unseen leaks or drips, and you have a recipe for the establishment of a mold colony. Pull the washer and dryer out from the wall regularly, and make sure the areas behind them are clean, dry, and disinfected in order to prevent mold growth.
Other areas to check frequently for mold include hall closets, garages, and basements.
Our team at SERVPRO of South Richland County is always here to help you with any issues related to mold remediation in your home or business. Large-scale cleanups after flooding and fire are our specialties. Call us at (419) 526-2701.
Who to Call After Water Damage In Your Home
After your home endures water damage, your furniture, carpet, and possessions can often be restored rather than replaced.
Imagine you come home from a fun summer vacation to find your finished basement flooded. Your carpet, walls, furniture, and other belongings are severely damaged. Who can you call to help you? Your first instinct might be to call a contractor. There are many differences between contractors and a professional Water Restoration company. As a professional Restoration Company, SERVPRO tries to restore your home and possessions, rather than replace them, whenever possible.
A contractor’s job is to replace everything that is affected by water damage in your home. This often includes all flooring, walls, cabinets and even furniture and personal items. SERVPRO of North Richland and Ashland Counties’ technicians are certified in drying and cleaning water damage to industry standards. Our team will be there to box up and protect unaffected property as well as thoroughly cleaning any damaged items. This reduces the amount of possessions that might just be thrown away by a contractor. Our average time to dry is 3 days, which prevents further interruption to your daily life and also saves you money. We try to mitigate the water damage, and restore when possible rather than just throwing your things away. In the long run, restoring your home is less expensive than replacing materials in your home.
At SERVPRO of South Richland County, we care about your personal property. Call us at (419) 526-2701 if you need any assistance with water damage to your home or business.
Summer Storm Damage and How to Prevent It
This beautiful landscaping was waterlogged after a heavy storm flooded it.
As summer comes to a close, you will probably be having the last of your summer fun and enjoying the nice weather. However, summer is also a time for rain showers in most of the country. Summertime showers often appear quickly and bring a lot of moisture with them, which can end up in your home! Here are some things homeowners need to consider:
Roofs and Gutters
It’s obvious to think about the condition of your roof and rain gutters in the fall, before the winter weather hits. But if they are not well-maintained after snow, ice, and winter storms, a simple summertime rain shower can create just as many problems as snow. Inspect these areas closely in readiness for a downpour so that you can spend the rest of your summer worry-free.
If you have planted vegetables or flowers this year, take a good look at the drainage surrounding any garden or landscaping area. Make sure that any excess water can escape if there is an abundance during a summer rainstorm.
Some showers can last for an extended period of time and rainstorms can hit the same area day after day. This can wreak havoc on your outdoor furniture if it is left out in the rain. There are many paint and finishing products available that will do a great job protecting your furniture from weathering due to inclement weather.
After several rainy days, you might feel the effects of extended rain showers by experiencing a higher interior humidity level. Mold can grow quickly in these conditions, as it thrives in humid, wet areas. Investing in dehumidifiers for your home can greatly reduce the chances of a mold infestation and keep your interior air quality at healthy levels.
Here at SERVPRO of South Richland County, we care about your personal property and your business. Call us at (419) 526-2701 if you need any assistance with damages from water, fire, or mold.
Carpet Cleaning in your Commercial Area
Stained carpets can give even the most well-maintained businesses a dirty reputation.
Many carpets are designed to camouflage dirt, especially carpet intended for commercial areas and businesses. Because these same carpets see so much traffic, they can get pretty dingy and rough-looking over time. A poorly maintained carpet can actually hurt your business, so frequent carpet cleaning is a good investment. A carpet that isn’t well cared-for will need to be replaced sooner than one that receives regular cleanings and maintenance, costing you a lot more money in the long run!
- If you own a commercial building space, keeping your carpets in good repair can cut down on customer complaints and liability from any trips and falls.
- Clean carpeting and flooring are part of the good image of your business: clients will be more comfortable with you, and your employees will feel more positive about their work environment. A happy worker is much more productive!
- A clean carpet also reduces illness-causing biological contaminants such as bacteria, mold and viruses that can negatively affect your clients and work staff. This will be especially important during cold and flu season.
Having your commercial carpets cleaned regularly should be part of your business maintenance program.
Consider these points when deciding what an appropriate cleaning schedule should be:
- Color, nap and pile, type, and density of your carpet: a higher-quality carpet will probably be able to go longer without cleaning, for example, and hold up better over time.
- Foot traffic in your place of business: this aspect is going to change based on seasons and weather. A busy workplace is great, but it comes with its own set of challenges.
- The type of your commercial space: if you own a business that uses heavy machinery, you will need to have a much heavier cleaning schedule.
- The type of business you conduct: a veterinary office, daycare or restaurant is going to need more attention than an attorney’s office, for example. If you are a business related to the medical field, your needs may be very specific based on the area of medicine you are associated with.
Our team at SERVPRO of South Richland County are trained experts when it comes to helping with all your commercial cleaning needs. If dingy, dirty carpets are a problem in your commercial property call us today at (419) 526-2701.
Grill Fire Danger and How to Prevent It
This grill was destroyed after its' flames were left unattended; the damage done to homes by a grill fire could be even more devastating.
As summer begins and holidays like the Fourth of July approach, families and friends will be gathering for outdoor celebrations, cookouts, and barbecues. However, these fun summer activities can soon lead to disaster when grills and bonfires are left unattended. According to the United States Fire Administration (USFA), more than 5,000 grill fires occur on residential properties each year, and outside fire pits and bonfires caused nearly 3,700 grass and brush fires in 2016.
It is important to make safety a priority when it comes to hosting family cookouts and other events this summer. You can avoid a fire-related accident with these six safety tips:
- Ensure that your grill is on a flat surface, kept clear from overhanging branches and away from flammable materials
- Keep your grill a safe distance away from where people will be playing games, walking or sitting
- Use long-handled grilling tools to give plenty of space between you and the flames
- Pick your fire pit spot wisely and make sure the weather conditions are appropriate for a fire
- Build the fire at least 15 feet away from trees, shrubs or flammable materials
- Always make sure to completely extinguish the fire when you are done by letting it burn down to ashes, pouring water over the embers and stirring everything in the pit with a shovel
Preventing Mold in Your Home
This dining room was completely taken over by mold that was allowed to grow without professional intervention.
Residential and commercial buildings alike can be difficult to prevent mold growth in because of the summer humidity levels that come with Ohio’s climate. Mold loves humidity and can easily survive and flourish on even the smallest amount of moisture within the walls or floors during a humid summer day. Because of this, indoor mold is most commonly found in the most damp, humid areas of the house, especially bathrooms, kitchens, and basements. Mold can grow uncontrolled as well on ceilings and inside of walls if the building has been recently water damaged.
Mold is a common fungus, of which there are thousands of different species spread throughout the world. The only way to prevent mold growth is to make the building uninhabitable to the fungi life cycle. Here are a few ways to deter mold growth:
- Use mold inhibitors on walls before painting any area, especially potentially damp areas like bathrooms and basements.
- Use dehumidifiers, air conditioners, and fans to keep humidity levels steady and low enough that mold cannot grow, the ideal being between 30 and 65 percent.
- Make sure that the areas under and around houseplants are free from excess water
- Keep rugs from damp rooms such as bathrooms or basements dry and frequently cleaned. Spores can thrive in a damp carpet and cause a severe mold issue.
- Use sanitizing mold prevention products to clean areas after water damage or mildew growth to reduce the risk of future mold issues in your home..
- Contact a mold remediation professional at the first sign of water leakage under appliances or in bathrooms.
Sometimes mold attacks in unseen places after a flood or pipe leak. Once this occurs, removing the water is not enough to eliminate the fungi entirely. Mold can survive for years without water, only to reemerge when exposed to liquid. Seeking the assistance of a remediation expert may help prevent future contamination and water damage. Our experts at SERVPRO of South Richland County know how to disinfect infected areas and completely kill mold colonies in your residence.
Staying Safe During a Thunderstorm or Flood
The aftermath of a severe thunderstorm in North Central Ohio; this house was all but destroyed by a tree that was knocked over during a storm.
April showers might bring May flowers, but North Central Ohio’s indecisive weather can often bring major water damage into your residential or commercial property. As we transition from spring to summer climates, there are a few different weather-related risks that could cause serious damage to your home or business.
Thunderstorms can occur anywhere at any time of the day, however they are most likely to happen in the afternoon during the spring and summer months. These storms are created by cumulonimbus clouds, and can produce extreme winds, lightning, and hail. Lightning can be very dangerous as well; in fact, more people are killed by lightning every year than they are by tornadoes.
When a thunderstorm is predicted in your area, there are some precautions you can take.
- If you can hear the thunder produced by the storm from your residence or business, you are close enough to be in danger from lightning.
- Keep an eye out for storm signs such as quickly darkening skies, flashes of lightning or increasing winds.
- Postpone any outdoor activities, and avoid driving in storm conditions.
- Find shelter immediately, in the basement of your residence or business if possible, closing all windows and doors securely.
- If you are driving when the storm hits, pull over and take shelter in your car immediately.
- Refrain from bathing, showering, using plumbing, or swimming during storm conditions.
- Ensure that storm drains near your property are kept unobstructed.
- Keep trees around your property trimmed; a severe thunderstorm might cause and straggling branches to break and damage your residence or business.
Spring and early summer is the prime time for flooding. As the seasons change, heavy spring rains can overwhelm rivers and streams and cause flooding. When water rises rapidly along a stream or low-lying area, catastrophic flash flood may occur. It is good to be prepared and have a solid evacuation plan for your family or employees when a flood or flash flood warning is issued.
Some basic flood safety steps include:
- Avoid flood waters at all cost. Just six inches of rapidly moving water can sweep you off of your feet.
- If you encounter a flooded road while driving, turn the car around and go another way. Most cars can be swept away by less than two feet of moving water.
- Gather your family or employees, some emergency supplies, and any important belongings and evacuate to higher ground as soon as possible.
- Store your most important items such as photo albums, family heirlooms, and business documents in tightly-sealed plastic containers to ensure that they are well protected from floodwaters. As well consider storing valuables in the attic rather than the basement.
The key when it comes to thunderstorms and floods is to make sure that you have a safety plan in place. Ensure that your family members or employees know to take shelter in the basement during a thunderstorm or to retreat to the highest level of your property during a flood. It is advisable to keep a supply of food, water, flashlights and batteries, and a first aid kit in the case of any emergency.
SERVPRO of South Richland County is dedicated to taking quality care of restoring your home or business after the inclement weather, so that the health and safety of your family and employees can be your main concern when a flood or thunderstorm hits.
Summer Fire Hazard: Air Conditioning Units
This air conditioning unit caught fire and caused unexpected damage for these homeowners.
There is no better feeling than walking out of the blistering summer heat and into the cool climate of your air conditioned home. However, what many people don’t know is that the same AC unit that makes summer temperatures more bearable can sometimes be a major fire hazard. According to the National Fire Protection Association, air conditioner fires caused 20 deaths and an estimated $82 million in property damage across the nation in 2016. There are several reasons why these potentially catastrophic fires might occur.
With sweltering temperatures outside, you might not think twice about letting your air conditioning unit run all day and night. However, prolonged overuse can cause serious issues and create a risk of your unit catching fire. Continuous use of the AC can lead to parts of its internal machinery breaking down and can shorten the lifespan of your unit as well as making it a fire hazard. Instead of leaving the air conditioner to run all day, consider shutting it off whenever you leave the house and turning it back on when you return. Turning the AC off at night when temperatures are less unbearable is also advisable to keep your unit running well and home safe from fire.
Another potential cause of air conditioner fires is improper maintenance of the unit. Annual checks should be performed on your AC unit to ensure that all of its pieces and parts are in proper working order. Filters should be inspected and cleaned regularly and replaced when needed. It is also important to never use extension cords when plugging in you air conditioner unit, and to make sure that it is securely attached to the window. As well, it is essential to keep the space around your AC free of debris, as any stray materials might get sucked into the unit and catch fire.
When the temperate begins to cimb, many homeowners rush to take their air conditioning unit out of storage and reinstall it immediately. While the heat might be unbearable, it is nothing compared to the tragedy of losing your home and belongings to a house fire that could have been avoided. When setting up your AC, take some time to check that all the equipment is in the same state as it was when you last put it away. If there are any broken panels or loose wires, the unit might not be safe for use. If you stored your air conditioning unit in a garage, shed, or storage unit throughout the fall and winter seasons, the wires could have been tampered with by mice, rats, or other small rodents. One chewed up wire inside your unit is all it takes for a fire to start.
In the case that your air conditioning unit does catch fire and cause significant damage to your home, our clean-up and restoration experts at SERVPRO of South Richland County are here to help. Our employees are experienced, well-trained, and have all the necessary tools to restore your property after a fire “Like it never even happened.”
When You Have A Biohazard Problem In Your Home
Not all biohazards are chemicals or come from a sharps box on your physician's wall. They can come with owning homes and sometimes with business and office buildings. Biohazards can affect people's health, and create situations that can seem unbearable. Wildlife that has entered into the roof of any home or other building, or is even nearby, can bring infestations with them. Mites, fleas, ticks, and even lice can become a problem when brought in by their original hosts, especially when their hosts leave them behind or worse when they die inside of your building or home.
In Mansfield, biohazard problems exist in many locations, often with no one becoming aware of the source. Because of this, experts need to be consulted. SERVPRO is trained in not only restoration but also in the control and elimination of biohazards. Birds often bring with them different strains of bird mites, and while these tiny parasites cannot burrow into the skin, their bites create a risk of allergic reactions, intense itching, and secondary infections. Lice, also from birds, can infest people, and create the same discomfort, but in a worse way. Because lice can infest people, a hot, soapy shower won't suffice like it will with bird mites. Treatment with a pediculicide often means neurotoxins, creating an additional risk.
Ticks and fleas can also carry disease directly, but these do not travel as quickly as lice and mites can, and remain closer to their original location. These should still be considered as risks and avoided. It is necessary to have a professional team conduct the cleaning of an infested area that has possible biohazards such as these blood-sucking parasites. Deceased animals also found can be disposed of properly at the same time, and the area thoroughly sanitized and made risk-free again.
Signs of an infestation include unexplained bites, scratching for no reason, lice infestations when the risk factor for such is very low, or even small black dots on the skin that move quickly. Those are mites, and their bites can be very tiny, but extremely painful. If this sounds like a biohazard situation that you may be dealing with, SERVPRO of South Richland County can help you eliminate the problem. Call us at (419) 526-2701 any time, day or night, and we will assist you in ridding your home of any biohazards that have been creating problems for you and your family.
Controlling Water Damage
Residential water damage can be the result of sudden flash flooding, heavy rain, a burst water main, or a malfunction in your sewer system. Whatever the ultimate cause may be, the result will be a soggy, dangerous mess that must be correctly addressed and controlled immediately. If your home has been affected by residential water damage in Mansfield, Ohio, take charge of the situation now. You can get your emergency solved in a prompt and timely manner by a skilled and qualified local restoration service.
Perhaps the quickest and most efficient way to deal to contact a locally owned cleanup and restoration service that is fully equipped and qualified to deal with the situation. You'll need to be able to trust this service with your property, but it would also be nice to feel that they will treat your building as part of their own community.
Contact Us for a Same-day Risk Assessment and Work Estimate
As soon as you contact us with the details concerning your emergency, we will arrive at your property for a full, same-day risk assessment and work estimate. We will examine every aspect of your property and find out what the extent of the damage is. Once we have established this, we will give you a complete estimate concerning the cost of the work that we will do for you. You are under absolutely no obligation unless you agree to let us do the work.
Even When the Water Is Gone, Mold Can Remain in Your Home
Even when all of the water has been removed from your home, you should know that dangers can remain behind. One of the worst and most pressing of these potential hazards is mold growth. Mold can hide in nooks and crannies all throughout your house and breed unnoticed until it takes over your entire property. This can lead to your property being condemned as unfit to live in and require more time and money to repair.
If mold growth is detected in your HVAC system or water filtration unit, the best way to deal with the problem is to root it out immediately. Our service team of skilled professionals can make sure all mold growth is destroyed and purify your air and water systems so that your family will not suffer any ill effects in the future. The faster this is done, the sooner your family can breathe freely without fearing further risks to their health.
Contact Us Today for More Information
SERVPRO of South Richland County is a locally owned and operated cleanup and restoration service that is equipped to handle emergencies in Mansfield as well all surrounding areas. Call us at (419) 526-2701.