Smoke & Soot Cleanup
Smoke and soot is very invasive and can penetrate various cavities within your home, causing hidden damage and odor. Our smoke damage expertise and experience allows us to inspect and accurately assess the extent of the damage to develop a comprehensive plan of action.
Smoke and soot facts:
- Hot smoke migrates to cooler areas and upper levels of a structure.
- Smoke flows around plumbing systems, seeping through the holes used by pipes to go from floor to floor.
- The type of smoke may greatly affect the restoration process.
Different Types of Smoke
There are two different types of smoke–wet and dry. As a result, there are different types of soot residue after a fire. Before restoration begins, SERVPRO of Fair Oaks / Folsom will test the soot to determine which type of smoke damage occurred. The cleaning procedures will then be based on the information identified during pretesting. Here is some additional information:
Wet Smoke – Plastic and Rubber
- Low heat, smoldering, pungent odor, sticky, smeary. Smoke webs are more difficult to clean.
Dry Smoke – Paper and Wood
- Fast burning, high temperatures, heat rises therefore smoke rises.
Protein Fire Residue – Produced by evaporation of material rather than from a fire
- Virtually invisible, discolors paints and varnishes, extreme pungent odor.
Our Fire Damage Restoration Services
Since each smoke and fire damage situation is a little different, each one requires a unique solution tailored for the specific conditions. We have the equipment, expertise, and experience to restore your fire and smoke damage. We will also treat your family with empathy and respect and your property with care.
Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call Us Today – SERVPRO of Fair Oaks / Folsom.
Indoor Pests: Dust Mites & How To Deal With Them
Get to know this pesky pest and learn how you can have a healthier home.
You may not know it but chances are your home is filled with dust mites. Dust mites are small, microscopic creatures that live inside our homes and can be the source of allergies for some people. Although you cannot see them with the naked eye, they are literally everywhere: it is estimated that 80% of household dust is comprised of dust mites (alive or dead) and their waste. For many people dust mites are quite harmless. But for some people with allergies or asthma, dust mites (technically their feces) can make symptoms worse, especially when sleeping. Here are some facts about dust mites and how to keep them under control in your home.
Facts about dust mites
Dust mites have eight legs and are part of the arthropod family. They prefer warm temperatures (ideally 68-77 degrees Fahrenheit) and slightly humid conditions (ideally 70-80 percent). Dust mites primarily feed off of the dead flakes of skin that humans shed every day and can create up to 20 droppings (feces) per mite per day. Skin flakes can be found everywhere in our homes like our beds, carpeting, furniture and our ventilation system. According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA), a human sheds about 1.5 grams of skin a day, enough to fees one million dust mites. Children, those suffering from respiratory issues, people suffering from eczema, asthma or allergies can be more prone to the negative effects of dust mites. Even dogs and cats can suffer!
Managing the dust mite problem in your home
It’s nearly impossible to completely rid your home of dust mites, and many, if not most, homes have them. But there are ways to combat and control the situation.
Be rigorous in your cleaning and vacuuming; dust and clean regularly and thoroughly
Reduce humidity levels to about 50% to discourage dust mite population
Treat affected areas with an anti-dust mite application
Studies have shown that more skin is shed in the bedrooms of your home. Combine this food source with the amount of sweat and fluids left in the mattress while you sleep and you could have the perfect conditions for a dust mite population in your mattress. So if you were to pick one room in your home to attack, start with the bedroom and more specifically, start with your mattress. If you have severe dust mite allergies consider wearing a mask while doing the below tasks as moving the dust around can exacerbate allergies. Here are some ways you can help keep dust mites under control:
Anti-dust mite formulas: Also known as a miticide or acaricides (a pesticide that kills members of the arachnid subclass Acari, which includes ticks and mites). Some acaricides are toxic to humans, like the synthetic benzylbenzoate and tannic acid, and caution is advised. The use of non-toxic, plant-based acaricides has been studied and one study in particular showed that the essential oil of clove was as effective at killing mites as benzylbenzoate. These miticides are usually sprayed on surfaces (like mattresses or upholstery); be sure to fully read the directions before application.
Beds and bed linens: It is recommended to wash your bed linens once a week in hot water (at least 130 degrees Fahrenheit) to kill any dust mites. While the sheets are off the bed, spray the mattress with a dust mite spray. After, use the upholstery attachment to your vacuum cleaner to clean up the mattress. Pillows that cannot be washed can be placed in the freezer for an hour. Purchase mattress and pillow covers designed to prohibit dust mites from entering and settling inside (they should have a thread count of 246 per square inch and a pore size of between 2-10 microns). You may also want to look into alternate mattress and pillow protectors. A Belgium-based company have tested and devised a mattress pad that utilizes microcapsules that release probiotics. These probiotics feed on the feces of the dust mite, essentially removing the allergens.
Flooring: Although carpeting makes our home cozy, it can be a huge source of allergens for some people. Regularly vacuuming the carpeting and rugs with a HEPA filter-type vacuum will help control indoor allergens like pet dander, pollen dirt and dust mites. Wear a mask while vacuuming if bothered by dust. Hard flooring doesn’t allow dust mites to penetrate under the surface, however dust, pollen and lint can easily float up from the surface and into the air (compared with carpeting that can hold on to debris). The key to keeping dust mites in control is to regularly clean all flooring surfaces.
Furniture: Like your carpeting, vacuuming your upholstered furniture and removing dust and debris will help make your indoor air quality better. The AAFA reminds us that dust mites can settle deep into cushions so you will most likely not be able to remove them completely. Regularly dusting wood or other solid surfaces with a wet microfiber cloth is the best way to trap dust in the cloth and not just spread dust around.
Dust mites and indoor air quality
People can have reactions, like an allergic reaction, to the bodies of dust mites but also their waste. Sneezing, stuffy nose, itchy eyes and post nasal drip can all be symptoms of a dust mite allergy. As these dust mite bodies are lightweight, they can easily be disturbed while vacuuming or moving furniture around. Becoming airborne means they can easily travel throughout the home, including the ventilation system.
Why you need to be concerned about indoor air quality
Allergies and asthma can all be triggered by poor indoor air quality like dust mites, pollen, and other issues like pet dander. In America, 22.9 million people are affected by asthma and 6.8 million of these are children. Each year over 2 million people end up in the emergency room due to an asthma attack. It is known that asthma attacks can be triggered by waste from dust mites, cockroaches or other pests as well as environmental triggers like pollution and smoking.
Dust mites contribute to an unhealthy environment, just like lead paint, mold, mice droppings, cockroaches, carbon monoxide, and other toxic or biological factors. Knowing how to address these unhealthy issues, like indoor air quality, is incredibly important.
At SERVPRO, we understand that any type of exposure to biological and chemical contaminants can pose some serious health threats and consequences. In a commercial setting, any type of sewage backup, blood cleanup or even chemical spill, can place YOU and all of the inhabitants of the area at risk. Upon recognizing the situation, your primary focus should be safety. After the area has been critically assessed, you should be well versed in the do’s and don’ts after a contamination.
What to Do After a Contamination
- Stay out of affected areas.
- Call emergency service personnel if the situation is life-threatening.
- Treat all bodily fluids as if they are contaminated.
- Turn off the HVAC system if there is sewage damage.
What Not to Do After a Contamination
- Don’t leave wet fabrics in place. Hang furs and leather goods.
- Don’t leave books, magazines, or other colored items on wet carpet or floors.
- Don’t use your household vacuum to remove water.
- Don’t use television or other household appliances.
- Don’t turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet, and keep out of rooms where ceilings are sagging.
Situations that contain any biohazardous material or spills, should not be handled lightly. At SERVPRO, we care about our local community, as well as all of those that live in the area. If you have any questions, or would like to contact one of our professionals
Importance of Creating an Emergency Evacuation Plan for your Business
Office buildings are places where large numbers of people stay throughout their day at work. If emergencies occur management must ensure an ordered and timely evacuation. In order to do so, as management you should develop an emergency evacuation plan in which you post in key locations inside each floor of your building. Each employee in the building should be aware and familiar with escape routes. By being prepared your employees will not panic and will respond to an emergency as quickly as possible.
As a business owner, you should observe each room of your building carefully. Find locations for an emergency phone, a fire hose, and an extinguisher.
You should always discuss the plan escape routes and aim to identify at least two routes for each room.
By doing this you & your employees will be prepared and ready for action & to get out safely!
If your business has been affected by a fire, storm or water damage be sure to contact SERVPRO 916-987-0400
Welcome to summer! It is that time of year where everything is in the sun. It is time to open the windows and let the fresh air in. Summer often brings a new list of household chores to get done before fall arrives. Is your household chore list overwhelming? Here are some great tips on how to clean your home in four easy steps:
- Plan projects room by room
- Prioritize by importance
- Declutter you home
- Clean and organize as you go
For a complete look and expanded tips visit: http://www.budgetdumpster.com/blog/spring-clean-home-4-easy-steps/
Need a little more than summer cleaning in your home? Did you recently uncover a larger problem like water damage or mold? Call SERVPRO of Fair Oaks / Folsom at 916-987-0400. We will come out and give you an estimate. Visit http://www.SERVPROfairoaksfolsom.com/ for details on our services.
Mold Testing in Your Home or Business
Did you find something that looks like mold in your home or business? Let SERVPRO of Fair Oaks / Folsom ease your mind and take care of the problem. Call us at 916-987-0400 for 24/7 emergency service.
Learn a little more about mold testing or sampling from the EPA:
Is sampling for mold needed? In most cases, if visible mold growth is present, sampling is unnecessary. Since no EPA or other federal limits have been set for mold or mold spores, sampling cannot be used to check a building's compliance with federal mold standards. Surface sampling may be useful to determine if an area has been adequately cleaned or remediated. Sampling for mold should be conducted by professionals who have specific experience in designing mold sampling protocols, sampling methods and interpreting results. Sample analysis should follow analytical methods recommended by the American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA), the American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH), or other professional organizations.
Are there federal regulations or standards regarding mold testing?
Standards or Threshold Limit Values (TLVs) for airborne concentrations of mold, or mold spores, have not been set. Currently, there are no EPA regulations or standards for airborne mold contaminants.
For more information on mold visit: https://www.epa.gov/mold/mold-testing-or-sampling
For more details about SERVPRO's services visit: http://www.SERVPROfairoaksfolsom.com/
Preparing for natural disasters - Why choose SERVPRO during a natural disaster?
California has its share of natural disasters. Wildfires, earthquakes, flooding and the occasional small tornado have all inflicted our state. Do you feel your home or business is ready for a natural disaster?
Here are some tips from the IRS website to prepare for natural disasters:
Here are some things to consider:
- Update Emergency Plans— Because a disaster can strike any time, be sure to review emergency plans annually. Personal and business situations change over time, as do preparedness needs. Make plans ahead of time and be sure to practice them.
- Create Electronic Copies of Documents— Taxpayers should keep a duplicate set of key documents. Keep documents including bank statements, tax returns and insurance policies in a safe place. Doing so is easier now that many financial institutions provide statements and documents electronically, available on the Internet. Even if original documents are available only on paper, scan them into an electronic format and store them on DVD, CD or cloud storage.
- Document Valuables— It’s a good idea to photograph or videotape the contents of any home, especially items of higher value. Documenting these items ahead of time will make it easier to claim insurance and tax benefits after a disaster strikes. The IRS has a disaster loss workbook, Publication 584, which can help taxpayers compile a room-by-room list of belongings. Photographs can help prove the fair market value of items for insurance and casualty loss claims.
The IRS can help even more. Visit their website for additional information:
Are you already working through your own disaster? Call SERVPRO of Fair Oaks / Folsom 916-987-0400 to help you through this time. SERVPRO's employees have been trained to help and assist you during this time. It can be an overwhelming time - SERVPRO will help you!
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Places That Water Damage Can Hide
Sustaining water damage is an unpredictable and inconvenient life event. An area prone to flooding might be more prepared, but flooding is far from the only thing that causes water damage.
Inconvenience aside, water damage is also costly. The typical insurance claim for water damage amounts to over $6,500, but insurance will often not accept water damage claims at all. Checking the common places water damage can hide is a wise practice for homeowners so they are not surprised later on.
Places That Water Damage Can Hide
- Under a sink. Because the area under the sink is hidden, it is easy to be unaware that there is a leak until there is a big problem. Check regularly for water buildup and mold.
- Around a tub. The caulk that seals a bathtub to the wall can become worn over time, allowing water to seep in.
- Under drywall. Drywall can hide severe water damage within the walls, which is especially common after flooding or a burst pipe.
- At roof intersections. Chimneys and exhaust fans that intersect with the roof should be checked regularly for leakage around their seals.
- In an HVAC unit. The air conditioning system’s drain line can become clogged, leading to water buildup within the unit.
- Behind appliances. Washing machines and dishwashers can have leaks that remain hidden for an extended period of time because they are in hidden areas.
- At an exterior faucet. Where an exterior faucet is connected to the water pipe is a prime spot for leaks to develop and is often hidden by siding.
CALL US TODAY 916-987-0400
We Will Get The Water OUT
Accidents happen, and regardless of the cause, it is how we respond to them that matters. Commercial water damage is no different, and your response can impact the result your business experiences, no matter what type of commerce you are involved in. SERVPRO is experienced in helping business owners and managers bring their businesses back from disaster, no matter how large or small the business.
Businesses affected by water damage can benefit from professional services in cleaning up, and the first step in getting everything back to normal. Professional services should be used instead of doing things yourself. Safety, thoroughness, and knowing which steps to take and when inherent benefits are that SERVPRO offers. We do what we do so you can get back to your business operations fast.
Inventory that has been damaged needs to be documented so you can be reimbursed by your insurance company. We can assist with this so that the process is smoother for you. However, our goal is to restore as much of your inventory as possible. In addition to reducing the losses you need to claim, it also reduces your wait time in purchasing and receiving replacement goods. This is especially important when seasonal or promotional items are involved. Not having the merchandise your customers want means they can go elsewhere, resulting in lost sales and plummeting profits.
If your business experiences a water loss; you can count on the professionals at SERVPRO 916-987-0400
Which Phone Should You Use In An Emergency - Landline or Cell Phone?
In the event of an emergency, most people know that they should call 911. This patches us through to our local emergency responders who are dispatched to a specific location. But with the introduction of cell phones into our daily lives in the 1980’s, a crinkle was added to the 911 dispatch system.
Previously, all 911 calls coming from cell phones were automatically routed to the California Highway Patrol 911 dispatch centers, which overloaded the call centers and slowed down responses to potential victims. Now cell phones use either GPS or cell tower triangulation so that a dispatch center can be identified and the call is routed to the proper location.
The California Highway Patrol (CHP) does have jurisdiction over state freeways and handles emergency calls on these roadways. So some cell calls made from city streets that are near a freeway will be routed to the CHP.
One way to ensure that a 911 operator can pinpoint your location is to use your landline to make a 911 call whenever possible. A landline is plugged into a specific address, so an Emergency Response Team will know exactly where to respond.
However, if you find yourself in an emergency situation and you only have your cell phone, use it to call 911. Your call will be routed to an emergency response team who will send help to your location no matter how you place your call.
Remember, don't delay calling 911 in the event of an emergency. The professionals who are answering the phone will find you help whether you are calling on a landline or a cell phone. Reach out, call and stay safe.
FOLSOM | FAIR OAKS | CALIFORNIA | WATER DAMAGE | FIRE DAMAGE | MOLD | RESTORATION