Signature Indicators of Mold Damage in Your Dekalb Home
Mold in a Dekalb Property? Call SERVPRO for Remediation
Dekalb Restoration for Mold After a SERVPRO Inspection
Detecting mold can be one of the most challenging steps toward removing it from your home, as many of the worst mold infestations occur behind walls or below floors in inaccessible areas. However, mold thankfully has some important tells that can indicate its presence in the home. Although individually any of these observations may be unrelated to any possible mold growth in the building, they are still key indicators that may be strong warning signs both in tandem with each other or on their own. Without the advanced detection equipment used by SERVPRO inspectors, these signs are your best bet for finding mold growth.
Foul and Musty Odors
If an area of your home has suddenly been affected by unusual and strong odors, this may be a sign of mold damage in Dekalb. Some varieties of mold emit a strong, musty smell, but others may create other unpleasant odors. If the scent is stronger closer to a wall, floor, or ceiling, there may be a mold colony growing behind that surface. If the scent is strong enough, this may be reason enough to call SERVPRO and find out how serious the damage is.
Rotting Elsewhere in the Home
Although this may be harder to identify, quickness for food and materials to rot elsewhere in the home may be a sign of a large mold colony somewhere in the building. These colonies produce exceedingly high volumes of spores, which seek out surfaces to grow on and consume. If curtains, carpets, clothing, or even food is starting to decompose at an unusual rate, there may already be serious mold damage present.
SERVPRO of NW DeKalb / Dunwoody / Brookhaven is a local authority and resource for combatting mold damage. If you fear a mold infestation has taken root in your home, call us at (770) 396-3883.
Prepare Your Dunwoody Home For Water Damage, Plan Ahead Today
Every home is susceptible to some form of water damage.
Plan Ahead For Water Damage
There are quite a few people that make the mistake of waiting until something happens in their home before making a clear, concise decision about how to deal with water damage in their home. Damages after the fact may leave you with no other choice but to rebuild.
Take a few moments to contact the insurance company providing the water damage coverage on your Dunwoody home. Decide which coverage is best for you while attempting to cover any situation that may happen in your local area. It does not hurt to look ahead and plan for the worst possible situation; it may even be the better course of action. Who knows, you could even benefit from having a relationship with your local restoration company before needing their services. At the very least, having a plan in place with a company like SERVPRO gives you an opportunity to gain some improvements and advanced support during an emergency, or improve your chances of recovering from a disaster, each of which help you as a homeowner.
Every home is susceptible to some form of water damage. It could be weather related, local flooding, leaky pipes, broken appliances, improperly graded yards, poor drainage, damaged roof gutters and more. Why wait until these issues cause major damage before doing something about them? Keep in mind that the majority of the situations that SERVPRO technicians respond to concerning water damage in a home involve small maintenance issues turning into something severe. We deal with broken appliances flooding different portions of a home far more than we do natural disasters or storm issues.
Take advantage of preventive measures that fit your unique situation. Obviously, every homeowner should have their drainage systems and yard grading checked for severe issues. If you put it off, you are just asking for trouble. Have a company you trust check for problems and install additional drains, backflow valves, or sump pumps in areas where you need the help.
Your locally owned and operated SERVPRO can assist with these services and help you prepare your home for a variety of issues that plague your area. We live here too, so we understand what is necessary to take control and plan ahead. Contact SERVPRO of NW DeKalb / Dunwoody / Brookhaven for additional information on how we can help you prepare your home today (770) 396-3883.
3 Reasons Not to Bleach Mold
Mold damage in Chamblee,GA
Avoid using Chlorine or Oxygen Formulas To Clean Up Mold
Business owners or tenants who spot mold growing in a commercial property may consider using bleach for fungus cleanup. This method is not the most effective way to eliminate the presence of mold and prevent colonies from returning. Here are three reasons to avoid using either chlorine or oxygen formulas for the purpose of cleaning up mold.
1. It Cannot Eliminate Mold in Porous Materials
The ionic structures of these cleaning solutions are incapable of penetrating porous materials. For this reason, chlorine and oxygen solutions are not suitable for eliminating mold from carpet, drywall, or upholstery.
Bleach is useful for sanitizing non-porous surfaces, but it will not eliminate the root structure of mold growth. If the conditions that allowed mold to grow persists, colonies are likely to return in spite of fungus cleanup efforts.
2. It Is Corrosive
A chlorine-based cleaning solution is very harsh and corrosive. This cleaning solution is known to irritate the eyes, skin, and lungs. This formula can also irreparably damage delicate fibers and cause other materials to deteriorate. Furthermore, it may produce harmful dioxins.
Oxygen-based formulations do not contain phosphorous or nitrogen and are natural, biodegradable, and less likely to cause deterioration. Even though these solutions may be preferable to chlorine, neither substance is the best choice for dealing with mold. These solutions are also not suitable for use on metallic surfaces.
3. It Quickly Loses Strength
A sealed bottle of this cleaning solution can lose up to 50% of its effectiveness while sitting on a shelf for only 90 days. Oxygen-based products may be more useful for deodorizing and killing bacteria and fungi, but these formulations lose effectiveness even more quickly than chlorine solutions.
These are just three reasons not attempt to use any form of bleach to clean up mold. For the most effective fungus cleanup results, contact mitigation and restoration professionals based in Chamblee,GA.
How Do You Flood Proof a House?
Flooded home in Dunwoody,GA
Flood damage may seem inevitable. Even if your home is located on a flood plain or near the coast, there are several measures you can take to increase flood safety and flood proof a residence in Dunwoody,GA.
Outdoor Flood Proofing
There are several retrofitting measures that may reduce the severity of flooding:
- Adjust the grading or slope of your property so water will drain away from the foundation
- Apply sealing treatments to exterior walls
- Anchor and elevate HVAC units, fuel tanks, and generators
If flooding is a frequent problem, consider investing in foundation vents that allow water to flow through the base of your home.
Indoor Flood Proofing
You may want to consider a combination of preventative and flood safety measures inside. If the municipal sewer system or septic tank at your residence back up, you should consider installing preventative valves.
- A backflow valve can keep sewer water from flooding your home
- A gate valve can provide a stronger seal than a check valve or flap valve
If flooding is on the forecast, you should take immediate action.
- Raise circuit breakers, sockets, switches, and wires
- Situate powered connections at least a foot above the anticipated flood level
- Elevate appliances and contents
You should also keep basic safety tips in mind. Exercise care when switching off electricity, particularly if this involves crossing standing water. All of these measures may limit the extent of flood damage.
You may also want to obtain materials to prevent water from penetrating your house. Keep burlap bags, sand, and shovels on hand or invest in re-usable sandbag alternatives.
If a flood affects your home, focus primarily on flood safety. Trying to flood proof a structure is less important than staying safe in the event of a disaster. Rely on a water and storm damage mitigation company to restore your residence in Dunwoody,GA.
5 Steps for Constructing Your Company’s Emergency Plan
Is important to know the exits of your building in Dekalb,GA
Contingency Plan In Place In Case Of A Fire
It’s a wise decision for a company in Dekalb,GA, to have a contingency plan in place in case of a fire. Not only can such plans help protect your employees, but after a disaster, they can help you get the cleanup process underway.
1. Know Where the Most Likely Ignition Points Are
Knowing ahead of time what areas might be the most likely sources for a fire allows you to plan accordingly. These might be places to ensure there is a fire extinguisher handy.
2. Map Escape Routes to Multiple Exits
An important part of an evacuation plan is knowing where the building exits are as well as knowing the quickest way out from any point of the building. You will want to plan at least two exit routes from each location in the event one is blocked by fire or debris.
3. Plan a Safe Meeting Point Outside
Another important aspect of a contingency plan is a safe place for your staff to meet outside the building. Gathering together will allow you to account for everyone after a fire.
4. Ensure Every Employee Is Aware of the Plan
One of the most important parts of an evacuation plan is to make sure everyone is aware of the details. You may want to post the plan in the breakroom as well as include a copy in your employee handbook.
5. Know Who to Call for Cleanup
Cleaning up after a fire can seem like a daunting task. You may want to prepare ahead of time and include the number of a fire damage restoration service in your plan.
With a contingency plan in place for your business in Dekalb,GA, you and your employees can know what to do in the event of a fire. Your plan should outline where the exits are, the fastest route to each one, and include a meeting place outside.
How to Use a Fire Extinguisher
Knowing how to use a fire extinguisher can prevent fires from spreading nearby residences in Dekalb, GA
A fire extinguisher is only useful if you know how to use the device. Be sure to check the class of extinguisher and identify a safe evacuation route. Follow these four steps to use an extinguisher to safely suppress a fire.
1. Check the Contents
There are four classes of extinguishers, and multi-class extinguishers can be useful for more than one class of fire. Class A extinguishers often put out fires involving commonplace combustibles such as paper or wood. Class B extinguishers contain materials designed to put out fires involving flammable liquids such as grease or gasoline. Class C extinguishers are designated for electrical fires. Class D extinguishers are suitable for use on flammable metals. Multi-class extinguishers may be labeled A-B or A-B-C.
2. Pull the Pin
Pulling the pin on a fire extinguisher will break the tamper seal. After you do so, an extinguisher will need to either be disposed of or refilled. Some extinguishers are designed for one-time use while others are refillable.
3. Aim the Extinguisher
Point the horn, hose, or nozzle of the extinguisher toward the bottom of a fire. You should be careful not to touch the horn on a CO2 extinguisher, as it may become extremely cold.
4. Squeeze and Spray
Spray horizontally from side to side across the base of a fire until it appears to be out. The fire may reignite, so it is a good idea to keep an eye on the area and call firefighters to ensure that it has been completely suppressed.
Knowing how to use a fire extinguisher can prevent fires from spreading and destroying nearby residences in Dekalb,GA. If a kitchen fire or another type of fire breaks out in any part of your home, the right extinguisher class may limit the damage. Hire a fire damage restoration company to clean and restore the affected area.
3 Flood Facts for Commercial Building Renters
Purchase your flood insurance in Dekalb,GA for your commercial building
Renting a Dekalb,GA, commercial building comes with many responsibilities. However, you may not be aware of your duties before and after a flood. Flooding can have a number of sources and may not be covered by basic renter’s insurance. Understanding the facts about flooding, as well as your responsibilities and rights as a tenant, can help you move forward with confidence during this type of emergency.
1. Building Repairs Are the Landlord’s Duty
If you do not own the building where your business is located, then your landlord should be responsible for repairing any flood damage. For example, if water shorted out the building’s electrical supply or damaged the flooring, it is his responsibility to call contractors in to make the necessary repairs. The repair of other systems, such as internet access, air conditioning and plumbing, also fall under your landlord’s accountability.
2. Flood Damage Is Not Always Covered by Insurance
Your renter’s insurance may cover fire or theft, but it is important to understand that most policies do not cover flooding under umbrella coverage. In most cases, you would have to purchase flood insurance that is separate from the policy you carry now. If you rent in an area that is prone to flooding, it may be wise to look into coverage that can protect your belongings and to research the cost of a flood damage and restoration service that can help you salvage important items.
3. Your Landlord’s Insurance May Not Cover You
Having knowledge of your insurance coverage in case of a flood can be vital to the survival of your business after a flood. In most cases, the landlord’s policy does not cover his tenants’ belongings, so it is important that you have effective coverage and update it as needed as you expand your company.
Flooding can devastate your Dekalb,GA, business, so you may want to take the time to understand the details of your renter’s insurance. The more aware you are, the better prepared you can be in case of a flood.
The 3 Categories of Water: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly
Category 1 water damage comes from a clean water source, a fresh water line for a refrigerator
If your home is flooded with water, it is important that you understand where it came from before you start cleaning up the mess yourself, otherwise you risk touching contaminated water. There are three categories of water that you should know about:
- Category 1, which is clean water
- Category 2, which is contaminated
- Category 3, which is sewage or black water
If you are unaware of where water came from, the best thing you can do is to call a Dunwoody,GA, water cleanup specialist.
Category 1 Water
Category 1 water is water that originated directly from a sanitary source, such as a supply line. This type of water is generally safe for non-professionals to deal with on their own. However, if the water is allowed to sit and mix with soils or with components of a building, it may become category 2 water.
Category 2 Water
Category 2 water is contaminated water, and it is not recommended that individuals attempt to cleanup this type of water on their own. Also known as "gray water," this water has bacteria present but does not contain any human waste. Experts recommend contacting a professional cleanup grew to deal with gray water only because it's difficult to know what types of contaminants it contains.
Category 3 Water
Category 3 water does contain human waste and other raw sewage, which is why it is also referred to as black water. This type of water is grossly unsanitary and should not be dealt with by a non-professional.
All three types of water can cause secondary water damage, which is why it is essential that they are dealt with right away. If you fail to clean up any type of water mess, it can cause mold and other property damage. Whether you are dealing with clean water, contaminated water or water of unknown origins, contact your local Dunwoody,GA, water remediation team right away for advice and assistance.
Preventing Water Damage on Your Construction Site
Water damage in Dekalb, GA
If you own a construction company, you know that there are many things that could go awry during the construction process. One of those issues is potential water damage. At any stage of construction, you may discover you need water pipe repair or a better drainage system. The weather may even play a role. Here are some common ways that water damage could happen on your construction site in Dekalb,GA, and how to either avoid or fix them.
Water needs a place to go, and if you don't direct it to where you want it to be, you could have a bad situation on your hands. If drainage pipes get clogged or there's more water than space to move it to, you could end up with a flooded site. There are a few ways to ensure proper drainage:
- Keep soil around the site graded
- Set up barriers, such as sandbags, around the perimeter
- Install screens on your drains to filter out debris
- Designate a specific place for water to drain
Poorly Installed Piping
A badly installed or poorly fitted pipe could lead to the inevitable need for water pipe repair. If the pipes leak, you may have a soppy mess at best and possibly water damage in the building. The site manager should inspect the pipes before water is pumped through them and sign off on their use.
A broken pipe isn't the only thing that can cause large leaks. Buildings under construction are particularly vulnerable to adverse weather conditions because they are open and exposed. You can install temporary roofs to shield the building from harm.
Just like the interior of your building, your materials should be protected, too. Store them in a separate, waterproof shed or inside the building on a raised platform under a tarp. This protects the materials from water that comes from above or below.
Whether your flooding stems from a need for water pipe repair, better drainage or sunnier weather, it can be just as expensive to remedy as a finished building. Plan ahead to protect your construction site from water damage.
3 Stages of Food Mold
Drying moisture fans in Dunwoody, GA
Keeping your Dunwoody,GA, home clean is probably a high priority for you. The kitchen can be especially challenging, especially when it comes to keeping your refrigerated and countertop foods fresh. One problem you may face is bread mold, which can invade almost any type of yeast-based product. While it might seem that food mold grows overnight, there are actually three stages it goes through before it becomes visible.
1. Mold Spores Lie Dormant
Mold spores are present on many surfaces, even if you cannot see them. This is also true of many foods, including fruit, meat and bakery products. These spores are harmless on their own and may be washed away or destroyed during the cooking process. Once the food sits for more than a few days, the present spores begin to take effect.
As food ages, the mold spores on its surface will begin to grow and germinate. Fridge mold can develop on almost any food, even if it is in an airtight container. When food sits, the mold spores start to consume its nutrients and then multiply and grow.
3. Visible Mold
Once the mold spores start to grow, they can be seen by the naked eye. They usually appear as white or light green spots. Bread mold of this type can be especially common, especially during humid weather. If the mold problem becomes severe, it can spread quickly, so you may want to consider calling in a mold damage and cleanup service to inspect your kitchen for infestation. Mold technicians may be able to offer you tips on how to avoid future fungus growth and prevent your fridge from becoming the ideal environment for mold to thrive.
Battling food spoilage, from bread mold to fuzzy leftovers, can be a challenge. However, when you know how mold grows and why, you may be able to slow or prevent the process and keep your Dunwoody,GA, home cleaner.