Spring Is Here
Today is the spring equinox — when the day and night are equal in length. The word equinox comes from the Latin for equal and night. Almost everywhere in the world today, nighttime and daytime are each 12 hours.
We use the equinox to mark the change of seasons, as the balance of light shifts to make for longer days or nights. It usually means that it's time to hunker down for colder seasons, or time to rise and shine for warmer ones, as in the case of our furry friend the mouse! You may also notice that on the equinox, the sun rises directly in the east and sets directly in the west, whereas at other times in the year, it appears off-center if you're facing those directions. Today, we mark the equinox with a Doodle to celebrate the changing seasons.
The Most Common Types of Mold
The most common types of mold include aspergillus, cladosporium and stachybotrys atra (also known as black mold).
Aspergillus is a fairly allergenic mold that is commonly found on foods and in home air conditioning systems. Cladosporium is typically a black or green "pepper like" substance that grows on the back of toilets, painted surfaces and fiberglass air ducts. While this mold is nontoxic to humans, it can trigger common allergy symptoms, such as red and watery eyes, rashes and a sore throat.
Mold that appears to be orange or red in color is typically found outdoors, given its nature to thrive on decaying plants or moist wood. This type of mold, which can appear slimy, is harmless and should only be removed for aesthetic purposes.
Inspection and Water Damage Assessment done by SERVPRO
When responding to a water damage emergency, we begin with a detailed inspection of your home or property, including a damage assessment. At this stage, our professionals are trying to determine the scope of the damage so that we can develop an appropriate plan of action.
We will identify the category and classification of water damage to ensure our professionals restore your property based on industry guidelines. The level of contamination of the water will affect the specific restoration processes we use.
- Category 1: "Clean Water"
- Category 2: "Gray Water"
- Category 3: "Black Water"
We inspect and test to determine the extent of damage and how far the moisture has traveled to ensure proper and complete restoration. In addition, we will inspect for safety concerns that may be evident. If there are any safety issues like lead or asbestos, please bring them to our attention.
- Survey Damage
- Complete Safety Inspection
We move furniture and property contents and block items to help prevent rust or furniture stains on wet carpet.
Restoring your Commercial Property After a Loss
There’s never a convenient time for flooding or water damage to strike your business. Every hour spent cleaning up is an hour of lost revenue and productivity. So when an emergency situation arises in your business, give us a call and we’ll be there fast with the help you need.
Commercial Water Restoration Presents Unique Challenges
SERVPRO of Bethesda / Potomac has the training, experience, and equipment to handle large commercial flooding or water damage emergencies. Whether your water emergency occurs in a small office building or big box store, we will respond quickly to mitigate the damage and manage the restoration project through to its completion.
SERVPRO of Bethesda / Potomac can respond immediately to your commercial water damage emergency regardless of the size or scope of the damage. We are part of a national network of over 1,600 Franchises with special Disaster Recovery Teams placed strategically throughout the country to respond to large scale events and disasters.
Mildew vs Mold: Do You Know The Difference
When it comes to mildew vs. mold, homeowners often have trouble identifying the differences between these two fungi. Knowing their different characteristics will help you when preparing for the battle against these household culprits.
Mold and mildew are both members of the fungi kingdom.
Mildew is a common gray and white fungus that’s often powdery in appearance. In homes, mildew will grow on damp materials like paper, leather and fabrics in addition to walls and other wet surfaces. Because of this, mildew is most commonly found in bathrooms, kitchens and basements. In addition to identifying mildew by its fuzzy appearance, you can also point it out before actually seeing it. Mildew usually gives off a musty smell that indicates an infestation is nearby.
Unlike mildew, certain types of toxic molds can result in serious health problems for you and your family. Black mold can lead to serious respiratory complications, which may result in long-term health issues and even death in some cases. If you believe you may have a serious black mold infestation in your home, call a mold removal service to properly remove the infested area.
What is an ERP?
No one ever plans for a disaster, but you can always prepare for it. Did you know 50% of businesses never reopen following a disaster? Preparation is key to making it through any size disaster whether it is a small water leak, a large fire or an area flood. Having a plan in place may help minimize the amount of time your Bethesda/ Potomac business is inactive and get you back in the building following a disaster.
Advantages of the SERVPRO emergency Ready Profile
- A no cost assessment of your facility
- a concise profile document containing only the critical information needed in the event of an emergency
- a guide to help you get back into your building following a disaster
- establishes your local SERVPRO Franchise Professional as your disaster mitigation and restoration provider
- identification of the line of command for authorizing work to begin
- provides facility details such as shut-off valve locations, priority areas, and priority contact information
Prepare Your House For Santa
As we start December and get excited because the holidays are upon us, we must also keep in mind the importance of safety. Here are some tips to remember during the holidays.
Never use lighted candles near trees, boughs, curtains/drapes, or with any potentially flammable item.
Stand your tree away from fireplaces, radiators and other heat sources. Make sure the tree does not block foot traffic or doorways.
If you use an artificial tree, choose one that is tested and labeled as fire resistant. Artificial trees with built-in electrical systems should have the Underwriters Laboratory (UL) label.
If using a natural tree, make sure it is well watered to avoid dry branches from catching fire from the heat of light bulbs.
Turn off all lights on trees and decorations when you go to bed or leave the house. Unplug extension cords when not in use.
When putting up holiday decorations, always use the proper step stool or ladder to reach high places. Don’t stand on chairs, desks or other furniture.
Prepare your car for the winter by checking items such as the brakes, spark plugs, battery, and tires. Check your owner’s manual for the recommended interval for a tune-up.
Refer to the link below for more safety tips.
Did you know that 3 out of 5 home fire deaths are due to non- working smoke alarms? Have you checked yours? It is as simple as looking on the back of the smoke alarm for the date of manufacture.
It is recommended that you try and change smoke alarms every 10 years if not sooner to avoid problems.
To find out more information on fire safety visit the website of Fema:
SERVPRO of Bethesda / Potomac is locally owned and operated—so we’re a part of this community too. We are also part of a national network of over 1,700 Franchises, which enables us to respond quicker with more resources. For major storms and disasters, we can call upon special Disaster Recovery Teams strategically located throughout the country.
SEPTEMBER IS NATIONAL PREPAREDNESS MONTH
Different types of disasters and emergencies happen in communities across the country, but there are key steps that every household can take to be better prepared for them. If you do nothing else this month, take time to create a disaster plan including an emergency escape plan.
Make a clear plan of what to do in an emergency and in case of an evacuation.
Identify clear roles for everyone in the house.
Discuss how to prepare and respond to emergencies that can happen at home, work, and school.
Make a list of all the important things you may forget when in an emergency.
Have a disaster kit assembled for everyone in the house.
Have an out of the area emergency contact person saved on a smartphone.
Practice evacuating your home twice a year, especially if you have kids or pets. This makes it a routine and can make a real emergency situation less stressful.
According to the Red Cross there are many disaster apps now available for smartphones and tablets that can be downloaded to help with emergencies. Some of these apps include a full emergency app, tornado, hurricane, earthquake, wildfire and flood apps. If any of these disasters are common in your areas I would recommend downloading the corresponding app. With these apps you can know when to evacuate, where a shelter may be located, and exactly where the disaster occurred.
Go to: http://www.redcross.org/get-help/prepare-for-emergencies/mobile-apps for more information
Areas in your house that mold can hide from you
Mold can occur anywhere in a home but mainly is concentrated to areas where moisture is present. These moisture areas are common to the bathroom and basements. Mold can cause respiratory problems and should be removed if found as soon as possible. Most restoration companies only do mold inspections if the mold is visible, an industrial hygienist would come in and search for traces of mold that are not visible.
One of the first places mold can collect and you may not think to check is under the refrigerator. Under the fridge tends to collect moisture and dirt which can cause a breeding ground for bacteria and mold.
Another place is the AC unit. AC units are known to collect debris, dust and moisture from the air, which can lead to mold spores.
Mold can even grow in or around a washing machine or its parts. Moisture and lint can cause a presence of mold spores.
Other area in the house include anywhere moisture and dirt may form such as window corners.