Emergency Response Program = Commercial Job
From Alter to Altered
It was late on a Saturday night when the call came. There had been a wedding earlier that day and guests were now gathering at a local hotel to celebrate the event. The bride and groom were ready for a quiet, comfortable night in their honeymoon suite. But little did they know, their Alter plans would soon be Altered plans.
It seems that there was a malfunction with the heat in their room, which set off the sprinkler system, flooding their suite and several other rooms.
Emergency Response Program
One week prior to the water loss, our SERVPRO of Quincy salesman had completed an Emergency Response Profile (ERP), for this hotel. The hotel manager was frantic to get hold of someone to ease the mess of this catastrophe. Then, she remembered the ERP. She made the call and SERVPRO was on site within a short period of time, helping eradicate the problem.
All was not lost, due to the system put in place by completing the Emergency Response Program for this hotel. The situation was dealt with and the damage minimized, because of the follow through of a great program.
Business and Commercial Loss
Any Size Loss Can Be Devastating
No matter the size or scope of your business, any size loss can be devastating. Whether it is a large apartment complex, small rental duplex or a single store front. A loss of any kind requires the knowledge and intricacies not only of how to handle the loss itself but also the insurance policy, to insure the business stays intact and gets the maximum benefit of that policy.
The SERVPRO of Quincy Difference
The difference in Quincy, IL is SERVPRO. Dedicated to helping businesses and commercial accounts with the knowledge and experience necessary to restore and keep them operational. With a dedicated team of professionals, we at SERVPRO of Quincy strive for excellence. Wanting to treat the business the way we would want to be treated, all while making it... Like it never even happened.
Plan Ahead: May 4th is Wildfire Community Preparedness Day
In 2018, there were 55,911 wildfires in the U.S., which burned 8.6 million acres, according to the Insurance Information Institute. Nearly 90% of wildfires are caused by humans.
Help reduce your community's wildfire risk by participating in a local event for Wildfire Community Preparedness Day. To see a project map to locate local events, or for more information and resources to host your own event, visit wildfireprepday.org.
Keeping Your Pets Warm During Freezing Temperatures
With extremely cold days ahead, it is important to not only keep yourself warm but also your pets. Like us, they can suffer from hypothermia and frost bite. Their paws are in direct contact with the ground and their ears are exposed. However, there are a few things you can do to make sure your furry friend is safe.
Pets living outdoors should have a dry and draft-free house where they can lie down comfortably but also small enough to hold their body heat. It should be raised a few inches off the ground and have cedar shaving or straw. Make sure the entrance is not facing the wind.
Your pet’s food bowls should be switched to plastic. Your pet’s tongue might freeze to the bowl if it is metal.
When using anti-freeze make sure it is out of reach of your pet. Anti-freeze tastes sweet but is deadly to your animal. If they step in it, they might lick it off their paws. There are pet friendly products you can use.
Keep your pets safe in this cold weather.
2019 Resolution: Plan Ahead
With each new year, many people resolve to better themselves or some part of their life. This year, make a resolution to be READY. No one ever plans on a disaster, but you can prepare for it. The SERVPRO Emergency READY Profile (ERP) will help ensure you are "Ready for whatever happens" in 2019.
In the event of an emergency, the ERP can help minimize business interruption by having an immediate plan of action in place for your facility. The ERP is a comprehensive document containing critical information about your business, including emergency contact, shut-off valve locations and priority areas. The ERP also establishes your local SERVPRO Franchise Professional as your disaster mitigation and restoration provider, giving you access to over 50 years experience and a System more than 1,700 Franchises strong. The ERP is a no-cost assessment; all it requires is a little time, making it a great value that could save you time and money in the future. By downloading the free SERVPRO READY App, this information is stored electronically and can be accessed using your mobile device putting help at your fingertips.
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 business is inactive and get you back in the building following a disaster. Don't wait until disaster strikes - resolve to be READY. Call SERVPRO of Quincy today to establish your Emergency READY Profile, and be "Ready for whatever happens" in 2019.
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 SERVPRO of Quincy 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
Winter Weather WORRIES
Winter weather can bring about more issues than just slippery road and a sidewalk to shovel. If you live where temperatures sink below freezing level, you are also at risk for frozen pipes and ice dams, which can create a major disaster at your home or property.
Frozen pipes are often those exposed to the cold weather, such as those outside your house, or in cold areas such as basements, attics, garages, or kitchen cabinets.
A frozen pipe can burst at the point where the ice blockage inside the pipe is located, but typically the rupture is caused by the backflow pressure between the water source and the blockage. A burst pipe can cause considerable damage to your property if not addressed quickly.
To prevent pipes from freezing, here are a few steps you can take, according to The American Red Cross:
- Be sure to completely drain water from swimming pool and sprinkler lines, as well as outside hoses
- Open kitchen cabinets to let warm air circulate near the plumbing
- When the weather is extremely cold, let water drip from faucets that may come from exposed pipes
- Keep your heat set to the same temperature both day and night
Ice dams can be a little-known, but major problem during the snowy season. They form when heated air melts roof snow downward into water dammed behind still-frozen ice. When the trapped water cannot safely flow or run into the gutter system, it can backflow under the roof's shingles and into the structure's interior areas, as well as causing gutters and shingles to move or fall.
Icicles can be an initial sign of an ice dam, according to Travelers.com. To spot ice dams inside, "check for waster stains or moisture in your attic or along the ceiling of exterior walls of your house. Water stains or moisture may be an indication than an ice dam has formed and water has penetrated the roof membrane."
Removing an ice dam as soon as it is found is vital to helping prevent damage to your property and can be done using heated cables, a roof shovel, or calcium chloride ice melter.
If winter weather causes water damage to you or your insured's property, SERVPRO of Quincy is only a call away, 24/7, ready to restore to preloss condition.
Dangers of EXTREME Cold
While your home can get damaged due to winter weather and extreme cold, your personal health is also at risk.
Fifty-three people died and three were injured due to extreme cold in 2015.
It is important to be aware of the effect extremely cold temperatures can have on you. The two main conditions to be aware of are frostbite and hypothermia.
Frostbite is caused when your skin is exposed to extremely cold temperatures. Physical symptoms are white or grayish-yellow skin, skin that feels unusually firm, or waxy numbness.
Hypothermia is when your body temperature falls to an abnormally low temperature, caused from long exposure to cold weather. Signs of hypothermia include shivering, exhaustion, confusion, fumbling hands, memory loss, slurred speech, and drowsiness. If somebody's body temperature is below 95 degrees Fahrenheit, seek medical attention immediately.
To avoid these conditions, stay indoors if possible, if not, dress warm in layers and try to keep dry.
What Are You Doing to Prevent Water Damage in Your Quincy Home?
We here at SERVPRO of Quincy are experts when it comes to water damage. With over 10 years in the restoration industry, we’ve seen it all. Though our specialty is restoring your home to preloss conditions after you suffer water damage and making it “Like it never even happened,” we have some tips for how you can prevent any future water damage to your home.
Watch Your Water Bill
- So often, homeowners don't realize there's a leak until major damage is done. If your water bill seems unusually high, there may be something going on behind the walls or beneath the floorboards. Monitor your bill closely to catch any potential leaks early.
Investigate Leaks Promptly
- If there is a water leak in your home, it is imperative that you take care of it quickly. Moisture in your home that is left untreated can result in mildew or mold and even structural damage to your property. Additionally, water damage that isn't treated within 48 hours could potentially become contaminated.
Be Careful Where (And What) You Plant
- Some plants, such as willows, elms, and maples, have invasive roots that could cause problems for your property. Before planting a tree, find out about its root system. Never plant a tree less than 10 ft. from your home's foundation; trees with invasive roots may need to be even further (25 to 50 ft. away) in order to ensure the roots don't damage your water and sewer lines.
Ensure Proper Drainage
- Clear your gutters regularly to make room for rain water. Downspouts from your gutters should be directed at least 5 ft. away from your home. It is best to have the water flow onto a hard surface (such as a driveway) or to have a splash guard designed to spread the water and keep it from puddling on the ground.
Check Home Appliances Regularly
- Oftentimes, flooding in the home is caused by a leak from a fridge or dishwasher, etc. Check and maintain your home's appliances regularly, and follow the manufacturer's directions to fix any possible leaks. It is also a good idea to regularly replace the hose for your washing machine. Leaky hoses are a common cause of residential water damage.
Of course these are just some ways to prevent water damage. Unfortunately, not all forms of water damage are preventable. Disaster can strike at any moment, no matter how prepared you may be. We hope it doesn't happen to you, but if it does, call SERVPRO of Quincy and we'll make it "Like it never even happened."
How to Remove Mold From Basement Walls
When it comes to removing mold from a basement wall, there is no one answer. There are a lot of factors that go into determining if you can remove the mold and how to do it. But before we dive into determining if mold can be removed from a wall, we first must understand what mold is and how it grows.
What is Mold?
Mold is a living organism, or more precisely, it is a fungus. It tends to grow in dark and damp environments and it feeds on cellulose. Cellulose is an organic material that can be found abundantly in drywall, cardboard boxes, carpets, wood, clothes, and curtains. You won’t usually find mold on metals and plastics since they don’t contain cellulose. A quick look around your basement and you can see that there are many places where mold can grow if the conditions are right.
Can Mold Be Removed from Walls?
Now that we know what mold is and how it grows, can it be easily removed from your basement walls? Well, it depends on what your walls are made of and whether they are painted. If the mold is growing on painted drywall or painted concrete, then you may be able to wipe the mold off. You can use a household cleaner that is made to remove mold and spray it down, scrub it off, and wipe it clean.
If the mold is found growing on unfinished drywall, then you might have a problem. Due to the porous nature of the drywall, the mold may be embedded into the drywall and won’t be able to be wiped clean. It is usually best to remove the drywall with the mold and replace it with new drywall.
With unfinished concrete walls, you obviously can’t easily remove and replace the concrete walls like you can with drywall. With concrete walls, you will want to scrub off any mold you can see and then soak the area with a mold cleaner. The cleaner should soak into the concrete and kill off any mold or mold spores that are hiding out underneath the surface.
Household Cleaners May Not Be Good Enough
If you walk down the household cleaners aisle at the grocery store or look up DIY mold cleaning solutions on the web, you’ll notice there are a lot of solutions and recipes to clean/kill/remove mold. While these may seem to do the job at first, most do not remediate the mold problem. Weeks later, the mold can return. Even the mold that has been killed can be harmful to one’s health if not removed. A quick search on the Internet shows some recommend a bleach solution while others say that it isn’t effective or healthy. So what is one to do?
Other Problems That You Need to Be Aware before Cleaning Mold
If you do try to clean or remove mold from your walls, be sure to wear ventilation to protect yourself. Inhaling mold can possibly be dangerous to your health especially when you do not know what type of mold you are dealing with.
Another problem with trying to clean mold on your own is that by scrubbing and cleaning and removing it, you may be unknowingly spreading the mold spores elsewhere. If you are scrubbing mold off a wall, the mold spores can quickly and easily become airborne and travel to other parts of your basement and home. Think of mold like a cup of fine flour. If you throw that cup of flour in the air, the tiny bits of flour can travel easily through the air and spread everywhere. Mold spores are even tinier (can’t be seen by the human eye) and can spread even easier and farther.
What’s the Best Way to Remove Mold from Basement Walls?
If you discover mold growing on a wall or walls in your basement, the best thing might be to call a professional mold remediation team like the team at SERVPRO of Quincy. The mold remediation team at SERVPRO of Quincy has the tools and equipment to inspect and assess the damage and determine the right steps to take to contain the mold, remove the mold, clean the contents, and restore your basement. They will also identify the cause of the water or moisture and either stop it or provide a solution to stopping it so that it doesn’t cause mold growth in the future.
One last piece of advice; if you discover mold in your basement, leave it alone. If you disturb the area, the mold spores can become airborne and spread elsewhere. Give SERVPRO of Quincy a call anytime 24/7 if you find mold in your basement.
How to Tell the Difference Between Mold and Mildew
It’s actually pretty common to mistake mildew for mold or mold for mildew. They both, in fact, are fungi that can be found in homes. They both thrive off of moisture and darkness which is why you usually find them present in bathrooms, basements, crawl spaces, and under sinks. So what is the difference between mold and mildew? Are they both bad for your home? Below we will cover the characteristics, dangers, and treatment of both.
What Does Mold Look Like? What Does Mildew Look Like?
Mildew is a specific type of mold that grows on the surface of things. It can appear as a flat, patchy or powdery discoloration. It’s typically white or brown that can turn yellowish or black as it grows. Due to the fact that mildew grows along the surface, it can usually be wiped off very easily. It does become a little more cumbersome to clean when the mildew grows on a porous surface like tile grout or fabrics.
Unlike mildew, mold not only grows on the surface but below the surface also. Mold is usually black, green or blue in color. It can appear either fuzzy or slimy. Since mold tends to grow underneath the surface, once it has been spotted it can usually mean there’s more mold damage beneath the surface. For instance, if you spot mold growing on your wall or ceiling of your Quincy home, there’s a good chance that it didn’t start there. It most likely started beneath the surface of the drywall from a water leak or high moisture content. In fact, it could have started somewhere else and spread to your drywall on your ceiling and/or wall.
The Smell of Mold and Mildew
Another sign of mold and mildew is a distinct odor. The smell of mildew is foul and smelly. It can smell like dirty laundry or a forest during the rain. One of the most common times people get a whiff of mildew or the start of mildew is when they forget to remove wet clothes from their washer for a few days.
Mold tends to have more of a musty, pungent smell. Most of us have gotten a little too close to mold and smelled its pungent odor when we’ve opened a food container in our fridge that hasn’t been opened in weeks, if not, months. Mold is a common occurrence on foods due to the fact that mold feeds and grows off of food and organic matter.
Can Mildew or Mold Cause Damage?
Mildew is typically not dangerous or harmful. It can usually be cleaned and removed easily. It may look unsightly but it won’t typically damage grout, tile, or surfaces. With mildewy clothes, you can simply wash them with detergent and it will remove the mildew. Mildew can, however, cause damage to crops. Mildew growing on crops out in the field can cause the crops to rot or bruise.
Mold, on the other hand, is not so kind to your home. Mold, if caught early, could be removed without having to replace any structure. This issue is that mold usually isn’t discovered until it has caused extensive damage to a home’s structure. Since mold flourishes under the surface, the damage to walls, ceilings, floors, insulation, siding, and framing has already been compromised. In many instances, the structural materials affected need to be removed and replaced.
Is It Bad or Is It Just Mildew?
If in doubt about whether you have a mildew problem or a mold problem in your home, it’s always best to call the mold remediation professionals at SERVPRO of Quincy. They have the expertise and know-how to identify the problem and take immediate action if it is property-destroying mold. It doesn’t take much for mold to thrive and grow and until it is stopped by mold remediation pros, it will continue to cause damage to your home. Call SERVPRO of Quincy for an evaluation of your home's mold problem.