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Conquering Odor After a Flood

7/25/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Conquering Odor After a Flood Keep your home dry and odors down after a flood by using special cleaning tricks and techniques

Many people worry about flood water damaging their Bel Air North, MD, home, but fewer people are on the lookout for mold growth after the water has dried. Mold is the development of fungi in damp, poorly lit areas, and it causes a musty odor. When a storm floods your property, mold can start to grow in just a few days, spreading its stale smell throughout your home. Once you have addressed water damage and disinfected your belongings, follow these tips for conquering mold-related odors after a flood:

1. Use White Vinegar for Furniture

Fill an old spray bottle with white vinegar. Then, spray the vinegar onto the smelly areas of any upholstered furniture you have already dried. Be careful not to spray too much, because added moisture will encourage further mold growth. When the vinegar dries, both the moldy odors and the vinegar smell should be gone.

2. Use Baking Soda for Carpets

You can’t go wrong with the naturally deodorizing properties of baking soda. Once your carpet has dried, sprinkle baking soda onto the affected areas to absorb any lingering odors and moisture. After letting it sit for hours, or even overnight, vacuum up the baking soda.

3. Keep Your Home Dry

To make sure these efforts to remove odors are worth your time, keep your home dry to prevent mold from growing again. Install dehumidifiers and electric fans, and open your windows when possible. These steps will help the air in your home circulate and stay dry.

When To Ask for Help

Sometimes, do-it-yourself tricks won’t work for moldy odors. This is normally the case if the water damage affects an area larger than 10 square feet, or if you experience sewage loss. This involves damage from black water, which has organic waste contaminants and is much more harmful to your property than clean water. When this happens, restoration professionals can address the damage in your Bel Air North, MD, home.

There are a few ways to tackle water damage, mold growth and related odors after a flood. However, address any issues promptly, as quick action now can save you time, money, and stress in the future.

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Most Common Causes of House Fires

7/23/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Most Common Causes of House Fires Candles can be dangerous and cause house fire in your Maryland home

A house fire is every homeowner’s nightmare. Not only would an event such as this put your family’s safety at risk, but a serious fire could destroy the home itself and your most treasured items and belongings. The good news is, if you’re aware of some the typical causes of a home fire, you can take steps to protect your place and everything inside.


You probably use your dryer frequently throughout the week—perhaps every day in your Bel Air North, MD, home. You may not think much about this appliance as doing anything more than get your clothes ready to wear, but the dryer is actually a common culprit for a home fire. Here’s how:

* Lint builds up in the exhaust trap and becomes clogged with flammable materials.
* Lint gathers in the exhaust vent leading outside.
* As your dryer runs and generates heat, it can ignite this lint.


People love setting a peaceful, romantic atmosphere with candles. The smells and sights can create a soothing ambiance. But these are frequent fire causes when people neglect proper care. Always make sure you blow out a candle when you’re not in the room. Also, make sure no one will easily bump into the candle.


Your home is filled with appliances and other devices that run on electricity. Your place has wires running all through the home. It’s important to not overload circuits. Don’t plug too many devices in one outlet. Also, it’s vital to have a professional conduct regular inspection of your electrical system to ensure you’re not at risk for a fire. Fire cleaning from electrical fires can be extensive, and the damage can be devastating.

Some of the best ways to avoid a home fire are to keep an eye on these three issues and ensure that you’re doing your part to protect your home. Be wise and conscientious, and you can keep these dangers away from the people and things you value most.

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3 Tips To Avoid the Spread of Mold

7/18/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation 3 Tips To Avoid the Spread of Mold Protect your property from Black Mold in your Bel Air North home or business

If you have found black mold damage in your commercial building in Bel Air North, MD, you are probably eager to do whatever you can to eradicate it and avoid further harm to the structure. Here are three important tips to remember that, along with help from mold cleanup professionals, will allow you to avoid further destruction down the road.

1. Turn Off Your Water

You likely already know that moisture is a common cause of mold growth. The first step to containing mold is to turn off your water immediately. If you notice any fresh wetness, clean it up with help from a mold remediation company and try to identify the cause as soon as possible. This is important to help prevent the threat of a larger moisture problem. In addition to helping with cleanup, a professional can assist you in figuring out what may be triggering mold growth.

2. Remove Airflow Sources

Airflow can cause the spread of black mold spores. It’s a good idea to promptly turn off the company HVAC system, especially if you believe that mold growth has occurred within it. A remediation company can help you figure out exactly where this growth exists. You will also likely need to have more regular HVAC maintenance checks going forward to make sure that mold on or in your equipment is not a recurring concern.

3. Eliminate Existing Mold

The final tip you need to remember is to get rid of any existing mold in your facility so you do not end up with a larger issue at hand. There are more steps within this process, but quickly disposing of smaller objects that have been affected by mold and enlisting professional help with your overall mold cleanup and restoration in Bel Air North, MD, are two good ways to start if you want to make sure that you have the basics covered.

Black mold can spread quickly and cause you to lose valuable commercial assets. Following these tips and getting help from experienced mold remediation specialists will help you protect your property and your peace of mind.

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Steps to Take After a Fire

6/28/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Steps to Take After a Fire Fire damaged home in Bel Air

What is more devastating than a fire in a home or a fire in a business? Both are extremely devastating, and recovering from either one of these can take a considerable amount of time. The goal is to preserve as much of the building and assets as possible, and the best way to preserve these items is to work with a fire damage restoration company. If these individuals are contacted quickly, the recovery process will be easier. When the fire restoration company is not contacted immediately, the home or building can suffer more. Damage can be caused even after the fire is extinguished. With commercial fire damage, there are lots of structural damage that can be caused. This may include damaged pipes and a damaged roof. The smoke smell is another nuisance that homeowners will have to remedy. Calling SERVPRO will speed up the process of the owner being able to return to his or her normal life.

What makes a good fire damage restoration company? There are lots of characteristics that make a good company; however, the most important one is that the company is able to come in a short notice. Stopping more damage from occurring is one of the primary goals of the company. The company will begin the process of covering any holes, and once this is completed, then the company can truly assess the fire damage. With commercial damage, it is important to assess the damage, but it is also important to salvage as many items as possible. In many cases, the owner will have important documents that he or she needs to save. Fire damage, smoke damage, and soot damage are the three main types of damage that will be caused by fire. It is important to identify the type of damage as soon as possible.

Not all items can be salvaged; this is especially true of smoke damage and soot damage. These items will have to be discarded. Whether the homeowner wants to keep the items or not, the items will have to be discarded. Getting rid of the smoke smell is also important. However, if there are lots of smoke damage and soot damage, getting rid of the smoke smell becomes very challenging. Commercial fire damage can have more damage than a home fire. However, with commercial fire damage, the owner may need to get back to normal much quicker.

Although the fire department helps to save the home from the fire, it can also create lots of water damage. The water damage can be just as devastating as the fire damage. The fire damage restoration company can also assist with water damage if there is a fire in a home or a fire in a business. First, it can use its machinery to dry the home, and this helps to identify the fire damage. Once the water is dried, this allows the company to begin the process of cleaning the home and getting rid of the smoke smell. With commercial fire damage, the recovery process takes longer because the building is often much larger.

Once the fire cleanup is done, the home should be similar to how it looked before the fire. After the fire cleanup, the smoke smell will be gone. If not, the fire cleanup is not complete. This allows the fire damage restoration company and the owner to begin the process of making the home look like new. Some of the appliances may still be usable, but with soot damage or smoke damage, they will need to be thrown away.

Although a fire in a home or a fire in a business is difficult to overcome, a fire restoration company makes it easier. This company allows the homeowner to know that he or she does not have to deal with the process alone.

Preventing a fire in a home or a fire in a business should be the ultimate goal after the fire cleanup is done. Although a fire can occur at any given time, having a fire restoration company’s contact information will be a good step to getting back to normal as soon as possible.
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Keeping Your Home Mold-Free After a Flood

6/27/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Keeping Your Home Mold-Free After a Flood Flood Damage in Bel Air

After a flood in Bel Air, MD, mold growth can become a problem for homeowners. Floods usually cause standing water and damp weather, which are mold and mildew’s ideal growing conditions. Black mold can be especially difficult to get rid of after a flood. However, these tips may help you to prevent mold growth in your home after a disaster has struck.

Tip 1: Dry It Up Before It Grows

Mold and mildew grow best in high humidity environments. This is why it is important that you start the drying process soon after the flood waters have receded:

• If carpets can be removed, hang them up to dry.
• Try using fans to keep air movement flowing.
• If there is a breeze outside, open the windows and let in the fresh air.

Even after a flood has ended, damp conditions can continue to cause damage to your home. These tips may help to prevent secondary damage after a flood.

Tip 2: Signs of Mold Growth

Sometimes, even after you have tried to keep an area as dry as possible, mold will grow. There are several ways to identify black mold growth in a home:

• A persistent musty odor might come from behind the walls or under carpets.
• Certain parts of your home could start falling apart from mold damage.
• You may notice mold spots on the walls of your home.

If you do see signs of mold in your home, it is very important not to touch or spray cleaning liquids on the spots. If you absolutely have to touch them, be sure to wear protective gloves.

Tip 3: Call a Professional

Removing mold can be extremely difficult without the help of a professional. Calling a mold restoration specialist can help you identify which type of mold is in your home. These professionals also offer special mold removal services, such as filtration systems and anti-mold fogs, to help get your home back to the way it should be.

After a flood, black mold and mildew can seem almost impossible to remediate. However, with the help of these tips and professionals, you can get your home back to normal in no time.

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3 Steps for Fixing a Manual Flushometer

6/18/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial 3 Steps for Fixing a Manual Flushometer Toilet Repair in Bel Air

A toilet that won't stop flushing is annoying, but the situation is even worse when that toilet is installed in a commercial setting. These toilets are often equipped with a flushometer, a device that drives a higher-pressure, lower-volume stream of water through the toilet. This method of flushing generally uses less water and is more efficient than residential toilets. However, when something is wrong with the flushometer and you're concerned about toilet overflow in your Bel Air, MD, business, you need to know how to quickly stop a toilet from flushing.

Step One: Shut Off the Water Supply

There's a screwdriver slot on the side of the flushometer from the handle. Use a flat screwdriver to turn the slot and shut the water off. (Sometimes, the slot is covered, so you may need to search around a little bit.) This step is vital to prevent a manmade toilet flood.

Step Two: Remove the Flushometer Lid

Use a wrench to loosen the top portion of the flushometer. Once it has been loosened, you should be able to twist it off by hand. Under the lid, there is a flange cover. Prepare to deal with water when you remove this cover. This clean water is generally preferable to toilet overflow water.

Step Three: Clean the Gasket

The rubber gasket beneath the flange may be covered in sediment. Remove the gasket and rinse it thoroughly. There should be a tiny weep hole on the gasket. This is probably the source of the never-ending flush. When the hole isn't clear, it could cause an inappropriate amount of suction. If necessary, you can use a very narrow tool to completely clear the port of the weep hole.

After replacing the parts in reverse order, if the toilet continues to flush, you will need to replace the gasket. If you have an automatic flushometer, you may want to contact a restoration professional when you're worried about toilet overflow in Bel Air, MD.

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Preventing Mold in Your Business After a Flood

6/13/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Preventing Mold in Your Business After a Flood Mold growth after a flood in Bel Air

After a flood, you only have 24 to 36 hours to clean up your business before mold and pesky bacteria begin to grow and multiply. Unfortunately, mold growth is rapid, and the only way to combat it is by being prepared and moving quickly to prevent it from taking over your Bel Air, MD, business.

How Does Mold Grow?

From the moment floodwaters enter your business – whether from a storm, a leak or a busted pipe – the beginning stages of mildew and mold growth may start to take place. Colonies of mold reproduce and proliferate by way of spore-like seeds, dispersing through the air until they find damp, organic material to grow on. Mold can only form in a wet environment, which makes materials soaked by a flood a literal breeding ground for these destructive bacteria.

Where Does Mold Grow?

When mold finds a place to surface, it will then begin to feed on all organic materials it touches, thereby destroying whatever it is living on. While mold will grow anywhere that is moist and made of natural materials, there are a few common areas it usually sprouts after a flood:

• Drywall
• Wood products and furniture
• Ceiling tiles
• Carpets and rugs
• Fabric
• Insulation

How To Prevent Mold

It goes without saying that the best way to prevent mold is to never have a flood or a leak in the first place, though, of course, accidents happen. If you haven’t yet suffered such a calamity, it may be in your best interest to renovate your building’s infrastructure to better prevent floods. However, if you have recently suffered an extended instance of standing water in your business, then your best option for mold prevention is to immediately call in a professional cleaning service that is prepared to handle disasters such as water damage and mildew.

Although mold can enter a business just a day or two after a flood hits, mold growth can be prevented by either making your building more flood-resistant from the start, or by calling a professional restoration service as soon as possible when disaster strikes.

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Commercial Fire Sprinkler Maintenance

5/30/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Commercial Fire Sprinkler Maintenance Fire sprinkler systems require regular mainteance and inspections

A commercial fire sprinkler system is one of the best ways to prevent injuries, save lives and decrease damage to property. That’s why it’s important to keep up on regular maintenance and ensure that your fire suppression system is working properly. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), recommends the following schedules for inspection and testing.


• Weekly to monthly: In most systems, sprinkler gauges should be visually inspected weekly. Gauges in wet pipe systems should be checked monthly.
• Quarterly: Alarm instruments associated with water flow detectors and valve supervisory switches should be checked every three months. Hydraulic nameplates, control valves and supervisory signals should also be examined.
• Annually: All pipes and fittings, in addition to spare sprinklers, should be inspected. Seismic and hanger bracing systems, as well as hydraulic nameplates should be checked.
• Every five years: Sprinkler piping should be inspected internally. This inspection is important for preventing obstruction caused by foreign materials.


• Quarterly: Mechanical devices, such as water flow detectors, should be tested every three months. Waterflow switches should be tested.
• Semiannually: Pressure switches should be tested every six months to ensure setting accuracy. Vane switches should also be tested twice a year.
• Annually: Every 12 months, the entire fire sprinkler system should be tested. This should include testing of water flow, alarms and fire pumps. Antifreeze concentration should also be tested.
• Every five years: In harsh environments with extreme temperatures, sprinklers should be tested every five years. Gauges should also be tested or replaced.
• Every decade or more: Fire suppression systems using dry sprinklers should be tested every 10 years. Sprinklers using fast-response technology should be tested 20 years after installation and then every decade. Sprinklers using standard response systems need to be tested 50 years after installation, followed by 10-year intervals.

If you have the unfortunate experience of dealing with a commercial fire in Bel Air North, MD, you may have some water damage from your fire sprinkler system. However, you can call a professional water and fire restoration service for fire sprinkler cleanup, which is preferable to the mess you could have if the fire department must use mass amounts of water to put out the fire.

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Mold or Mildew: Understanding the Difference

5/14/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation Mold or Mildew: Understanding the Difference Mold or Mildew can be found in your Bel Air home

Mold or Mildew: Understanding the Difference

If you see something growing on a surface in your home in Bel Air North, MD, you may not know right off the bat whether it is mold damage or mildew growth. After all, both substances have some things in common:

• Love warm, moist environments
• Grow on any surface
• Give off an unpleasant odor

There are, however, key differences between mold and mildew. Those differences can affect how you resolve each issue.

Dealing With Mildew

Mildew is often gray or white, and it clings to wet surfaces. The surface is typically as far as it gets, though. Mildew doesn’t tend to bore into surfaces, causing damage below the top of the item where it grows. Because of this, it can usually be cleaned with a simple household cleaner and a stiff brush. As long as you dry the affected area after cleaning and commit to a regular cleaning schedule, the mildew is unlikely to return.

Dealing With Mold

Mold comes in a wide variety of colors, shapes and textures. It tends to spread more quickly than mildew. Mold damage often goes way below the surface, sometimes rendering the affected item unsalvageable. Its spores take root in porous surfaces, making it impossible to clean with cleaners that you keep in your home. Mold growth requires professional remediation to resolve the issue. If you try to clean mold yourself using the same techniques you use to clean mildew, you are likely to make the problem worse and cause it to spread. It may even get in the air ducts of your home’s HVAC system, causing the spores to be dispersed throughout the home.

While your initial reaction to mold and mildew may be the same, it is much easier and less expensive to rid your home of mildew growth than mold damage. If you suspect your problem is more than mildew, call trained technicians as soon as possible.

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Fire and Lightning

5/9/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Fire and Lightning Lightening can be dangerous to your Bel Air home

Lightning can cause serious damage to a house depending on where it strikes. When it strikes a home in Bel Air North, MD, it can potentially lead to a house fire or an electrical short in the wiring that destroys unprotected appliances or devices. A lightning fire can also cause major damage to a home’s structural integrity.

A bolt of lightning will always find the fastest way to the ground, usually through a home’s wires or plumbing. The biggest dangers of a strike are fire, shock waves, and power surges.

Problems Lightning Strikes Cause

• Fires can start from an electrical short when lightning travels through power lines, wiring, or plumbing in your home. A lightning fire can create sparks that ignite insulation and building materials in the walls or attic, both of which are dangerous because they’re not immediately noticeable.

• Shock waves can destroy brick and concrete, crack housing foundations and chimneys, and shatter windows.

• Electrical surges pose a fire hazard should wires ignite. They also generate massive currents of electricity that can overheat electronic devices such as TVs, computers, and appliances.

Actions To Take After a Strike

• Call your local fire department or 911 if you smell smoke. If a fire starts in the attic, you may not notice right away. The fire department can perform an inspection and search for issues.

• Find an electrician to assess your wiring and make sure there are no damaged wires that may cause a fire hazard later.

• Inspect your roofing and siding for damage from the strike itself.

If you know your house has been struck, call the fire department immediately. Ignited materials in the roof or walls may start with a slow burn before turning into a full house fire. A lightning fire is particularly dangerous for this reason, and steps should always be taken to ensure the safety of your home and family.

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