How to be safe around the Camp Fire!
With autumn in full force and winter just around the corner, many of us have taken to the outside to enjoy the cool weather sitting around a bonfire. Bonfires can be a great activity for the whole family, but it’s important to remember the dangers of open flames and how to responsibly have a bonfire!
- You should always either use a fire pit purchased from the store or dig your own – Fire pits are a crucial part of keeping a bonfire contained where you want it to be and not have it spread, be sure also to clear away brush from around the fire pit as well
- Make sure your fire is a safe distance from houses, trees, powerlines, or anything that can be affected by the heat
- Keep a bucket of water or a garden hose close by – Accidents happen and being able to address them immediately is how to prevent things from getting worse
- Use newspaper and small kindling to get the fire started, NOT gasoline or other accelerants
- Never spray aerosols or toss canisters into the fire – The heat can make these containers explode and throw burning embers everywhere
- Limit your fire size – It’s tempting to make a big fire, but you should make sure to keep your fire to a manageable size, no bigger than a few feet around
- When you’re done be sure that the fire is completely extinguished – Stir the ashes around and use more water than you think you need to ensure there is nothing still smoldering, embers can stay smoldering, hidden under a bed of ashes for hours and can be relit by the wind unexpectedly
Bonfires are a lot of fun and a great way to spend time outside, just be sure you are taking the proper precautions to do so safely.
Removing Water From Your Home
When water invades your home, quick action needs to be taken in order to get matters under control and your life back to normal. When water is left to soak into and remain, the greater the water damage and the repair.
SERVPRO of Chesapeake, Portsmouth, Norfolk West, and Hampton North handles water damage with an inventory of equipment with large and powerful pumps that we can submerge enabling a quicker extraction of the floodwater. Our machinery will raise the interior temperature so that evaporation happens at a precise rate.
Our trained technicians and supervisors determine the best drying method to utilize to maintain the quality of the water-damaged area and product. For instance, if a wooden floor is dried out too quickly or with extreme temperatures, the floor can be ruined. Our motto is to restore, not replace. So, we work diligently to help ensure that we can save as much of the structure and belongings of the home as possible. This is beneficial to not only the homeowner but to your insurance company too as it helps to save money.
After the extractor has removed the water, smaller hand-held equipment is used to remove the remaining water found in crevices and baseboards. Once the water has been removed, the drying process begins for the remaining surface dampness and porous household items with the use of our desiccant machines and air movers. An Air Scrubber, our portable filtration system can be used to help clean the air of any contaminants such as dust, gasses, or chemicals in any area.
If you need help with water damage in your home, SERVPRO is here to help.
Mold in Commercial Buildings
Dealing with mold in your commercial building is often an unavoidable necessity. Leaks, humidity, poor airflow, and moisture build-up all can cause mold to grow unexpectedly. If you see mold in your building, it’s important to take steps to correct the issue as soon as possible. Mold spreads quickly and a small issue can rapidly grow into a large infestation if left alone. A musty smell, discoloration of walls or ceilings, and leaks are all signs that you may have a mold issue. When addressing a mold problem, it’s important to use a professional mold remediation company like us here at SERVPRO of Chesapeake, Portsmouth, Norfolk West, and Hampton North.
Our teams are trained in the proper techniques and procedures to help reduce the likelihood of regrowth. Additionally, we’re able to follow specific containment procedures in order to help prevent the spread of the mold to other surfaces when cleaning including negative air chambers and physical barriers. In more severe cases, it may be necessary to remove the affected materials as just cleaning them will not fix the issue. If this is the case, our teams can also handle the reconstruction of your building, making the process as smooth as possible and eliminating the need for dealing with additional companies. If you see mold in your commercial building give us a call and ask how we can make it “Like it never even happened.”
Clean Your Gutters Before the Storm
It’s officially storm season and with all this rain incoming now has never been a better time to make sure that your gutters are in working order. Here are some tips from us here at SERVPRO of Chesapeake, Portsmouth, Norfolk West, and Hampton North to help make sure your gutters are in tip-top shape before the storms.
- Your gutters should be cleaned at least twice a year, once before winter to make sure they’re clear of all the fallen leaves, and once after winter before the spring rain.
- It’s also a good idea to inspect your gutters and your roof after a heavy storm. Strong winds can blow debris into them and clog them up, or even cause damage to them so that they are not functioning properly.
- Make sure that your downspouts are secured and pointed away from your home. If your downspouts are not aimed correctly, you could be directing the water into pools around your foundation which can lead to flooding.
- You’ll also want to make sure that the downspouts are extended at least two feet from the home. This will also help to ensure that water does not pool around your foundation.
- Run water through your gutters after cleaning them to make sure that they are draining properly to the downspouts and that there are no areas where water is leaking out.
You can’t always prevent water damage from happening but following these tips will certainly help to reduce the probability of water entering your home. If you do experience a water damage emergency our team is available 24/7, 365 days a year to help make it “like it never even happened.”
Repairing Damage after A Storm
SERVPRO of Chesapeake North offers full storm damage cleanup and restoration services for our local area. From a small puddle from a leaky window to a tree falling on your roof and causing severe water damage, our team can help you get your home back to “Like it never even happened.”
Recently our team helped to restore a home after a tree had fallen onto the roof after a storm. The tree broke a hole in the roof in the middle of a rainstorm and the water damage to the home was extensive and spanned multiple floors. Once the tree was removed, we were able to tarp up the roof to prevent any further water intrusions so that we could begin cleanup. First, we addressed the contents of the house, helping to determine what was and wasn’t salvageable and packing it all out to begin water extraction. Once the contents were removed, we were able to set up a plan to get the house dried as efficiently as possible. Our mitigation team visited the home frequently to check on the drying process and ensure that everything was going as planned, taking moisture and humidity readings throughout the process. Our SERVPRO team also offers reconstruction and repair services, so after the water was removed, we worked with the homeowners to help rebuild the home back to preloss conditions. We also boast healthy relationships with many of our local insurance companies and were able to work directly with their agent to help make things as go as smoothly as possible for the homeowners in an already stressful and frantic time.
If your home suffers from storm damage and you are in need of a professional restoration company, look no further than SERVPRO of Chesapeake North. Our teams are available 24/7, 365 days a year for any emergency services. Just give us a call and let us know what we can do for you, we’re always here to help!
What SERVPRO Can Do For You
As leaders in the industry, when most people think about SERVPRO the first things that come to mind are fire and water damage mitigation, but we also offer quite a few other services to both commercial and residential customers that you might be less familiar with!
Air Duct and HVAC Cleaning
Our SERVPRO of Chesapeake North professionals can inspect your HVAC system and ductwork. Cleaning services can be provided to help restore peak energy efficiency, eliminate offensive odors, and improve indoor air quality.
Carpet and Hard Floor Cleaning and Care
Technicians use the latest IICRC training as well as state-of-the-art equipment to remove entrapped soils from deep within your carpet's pile and backings.
Stain Removal and Stain Resistance Applications
Using IICRC standards for carpet as a guide, SERVPRO technicians will show you what cleaning option would be best for our carpet's level of soiling and explain the benefits of soil protection.
Odor Identification and Deodorization
SERVPRO professionals will find the source of the odor and determine the best methods to neutralize and eliminate it.
Upholstery and Drapes: Wet and Dry-Cleaning Methods
Fabrics are inspected and tested to determine the safest and most effective cleaning methods.
Crime Scene and Biohazard Cleanup
SERVPRO technicians are trained to safely and effectively clean biohazardous substances and prepare waste for proper disposal according to OSHA, EPA and state and local health regulations.
We offer cleaning and restoration services for damaged parts of your property as well as graffiti removal services exterior walls and surfaces around your building including driveways, walkways, asphalt, and masonry.
When it comes to protecting your business and dealing with unforeseen damages to your property, look no farther than SERVPRO of Chesapeake North. Our team of highly trained professionals are available 24/7, 365 days a year for emergency services.
How SERVPRO Uses Deodorization
Unpleasant odors in your home or business are never a good time. While some odors go away on their own, many tend to linger causing lasting issues of olfactory distress. Odor molecules can settle on items in your home or even into items with porous surfaces like wood, upholstery, and carpets, which can make them very difficult to get rid of.
Here at SERVPRO of Chesapeake North our technicians are IICRC certified in odor removal techniques using advanced technology and equipment to help eliminate even the most stubborn odors. Deodorization is a science that includes many different products and procedures:
Masking agents are exactly what they sound like. Sprays or other various items that help to mask unpleasant odors with a more acceptable smell. While masking agents may give the most immediate relief, they are only temporary and do not do anything to address the actual source of the bad odor particles. For this reason, SERVPRO never uses masking agents as a primary method of odor mitigation, but we will use them to help make the odors less unpleasant while other methods of deodorization are in progress.
These are chemicals designed to combine (or “pair”) with the odor causing particles. There are two kinds of pairing agents: humectant, or counteractant. The first is one that is designed to absorb the odor particles floating in the air and cause them to fall onto surfaces where they can then be cleaned and removed. The second is meant to combine with the particles and chemically alter the odor molecule in a way that changes the odor causing properties or destroy it all together. These agents can be delivered in multiple ways including fogging and spraying.
There are two main kinds of filtration agents used in deodorization: absorption and adsorption. Absorption agents are made of highly absorptive compounds, fillers, and perfume. Adsorption agents work by capturing odor particles and holding them to the surface of the agent. Both methods are meant to pull odorous gasses from the air as it flows by or is pushed through the filtering agent.
Disinfectants and Sanitizers
Odors don’t just appear out of nowhere, something has caused or produced the particles responsible for the odors that you are smelling. Disinfectants and sanitizers are used to help control or kill the odor producing bacteria or fungi in your home or business.
These enzymes are used on odors caused by organic materials or protein-based odors. These work by breaking down organic molecules into other substances that are odorless like water or carbon dioxide.
Air purification works by using electronic filters that create a charged grid to kill microorganisms as they pass through the filter.
SERVPRO also uses equipment like Ozone and hydroxyl generators to help eliminate odors. These machines produce ozone or hydroxyl radicals. These compounds alter the odor particles causing them to bind with oxygen molecules and assists in breaking them down through the process of oxidation.
Often, odors will require a combination of these various different products and techniques to be fully eliminated. Whether your odor issue is from mold, smoke, sewage, or other unpleasant smells, SERVPRO of Chesapeake North is fully equipped to help eliminate these odors from your property and belongings. Give us a call or fill out a form online and let us know how we can help to make your unsavory odors “Like it never even happened.”
SERVPRO Works with Your Insurance
When your home suffers from a disaster like a fire or water damage, the last thing you want to deal with is trying to juggle with insurance agents and contractors just to get your life back in order. Here at SERVPRO of Chesapeake North we understand just how stressful these situations are and how important it is to fix the disruptions to your daily life and get back to normal as fast as possible. Here are a few of the ways that SERVPRO can help get your life back to “like it never even happened.”
We boast healthy relationships with many insurance agencies and will communicate directly with your agents. Notifying both you and your agent of any changes and developments in the restoration will help to eliminate any miscommunications and move your claims process along as fast as possible.
Our team is trained to heavily document everything about your restoration process from the initial damage to the final product. Should the restoration to your home require a move out of your belongings we offer a contents inventory service for pack in and pack out of your belongings that can also help with your claims process, creating an inventory of damaged and non-damaged items to present to your insurance.
As a leader in the restoration industry our team has in depth knowledge of the entire claims process from start to finish. Our job file coordinators can help you in your claims process with all the paperwork and what is needed for your claim to be processed as efficiently as possible.
From initial mitigation to restoration and repairs, SERVPRO of Chesapeake North handles it all. We employ our own contractors and handle all communications ourselves so that you don’t have to. Eliminate the stress of having to deal with multiple different companies to get the job done.
SERVPRO of Chesapeake North is committed to providing the best possible service we can during the stressful time of dealing with a disaster in your home. With decades of industry experience and a highly trained team of professionals we’re here to help. If your home or business has suffered from a disaster give us a call and let us know what we can do for you!
What Are Air Scrubbers?
It’s important to us at SERVPRO of Chesapeake North to help you understand the ins and outs of what goes on when you call us in for a project on your home or business. Today we thought we’d go over one of the essential tools in our arsenal that we use on many projects, the air scrubber.
Air scrubbers are essentially portable air filtration devices. They pull in air from the room around them and passes it though a series of filters to remove any particles that are present and unwanted.
These machines are brought in on jobs such as fire damage, mold, sewage, or other jobs where large amounts of particulates are present in the air. For fires, soot and smoke particles often linger in the air and the cleaning process can release more of them into the air from the surfaces being cleaned. With sewage, air scrubbers help to remove the particles in the air that cause your home to smell. In cases of mold, while remediation efforts are taking place, spores can be kicked up and released into the air. These scrubbers help to ensure that there is no contamination of areas that were not previously affected by the mold and include HEPA air filters to make sure that the air quality is safe.
As you can see, air scrubbers are an essential tool for almost all damage remediation projects and now, if you need our home restoration services and see one of these green boxes in your home, you’ll know why!
What To Do for a Power Outage
When big storms roll though your Chesapeake area, especially winter storms, depending on where you live, power outages can be pretty common. Besides the obvious issues of heat/ac, lighting and potential evacuation, power outages come with a host of minor inconveniences as well. A common one is trying to figure out how long your freezer/fridge has been without electricity and whether or not your food is safe to eat still or if it has gone bad from lack of refrigeration. Here’s a quick and easy tip for making trying to figure it out a little easier.
Fill a small glass with water and let it freeze in your freezer. Once the water is frozen, take a quarter and put it on top of the ice in the cup. Now, simply leave that cup inside the freezer. The next time you experience a power outage in your home, or you’ve had to evacuate, you’ll be able to use this cup to help decide on if your food has thawed and is unsafe to eat.
After the electricity has come back on and you’ve returned home, you can check this cup and see where the quarter is. If the quarter is still on top of the cup of water, then it’s likely that your freezer either stayed on, or was not without power for very long, and nothing has thawed out and is still safe to eat. If the quarter is farther down in the cup but not near the bottom, then things might’ve started to defrost but did not completely thaw out. As long as caution is used these items are likely still safe to eat. Finally, if the quarter is on the bottom of the cup, this is an indication that your freezer was likely off for a decent period of time and that the food items have at one point completely thawed out and are probably no longer safe to eat.
It's important to use your best judgment when it comes to making sure food is still safe to eat. If you feel something might not be good any longer then the best plan is to just throw it out, but if you are pretty sure that it is still okay this little frozen quarter trick might help set your mind at ease a little, knowing that the water in the cup never thawed out.