Understand Mold Growth for Prevention
Many commercial property owners in Kingwood, TX are well-aware of the need for mold prevention and the high cost of water damage. In their efforts to avoid mold growth, property owners have identified many of the most likely areas for growth, but other areas have gone unnoticed. In light of this, one of the best ways to control the growth and spread of mold is to understand the conditions that encourage growth.
Four Ingredients Necessary for Mold
• Organic nutrients
• Moisture, whether water or humidity
• A hospitable surface
Identifying these four ingredients and taking efforts to isolate or control those ingredients is key to mold prevention. For example, something as ubiquitous as dust particles on a building surface in an out of the way place in an air-conditioned building can become an ideal environment for floating spores to take root and colonize. Dimly-lit basements and attics are often full of dust and can be easily affected by high humidity, leaks from appliances on the roof, or seepage through aging foundations.
Overlooked Areas of Mold Colonization
Other likely areas to inspect and maintain in prevention efforts include:
• Cavity walls
• Ceiling tiles
• Corners without air circulation
• Electrical equipment
• HVAC system drain pans
• Masonry surfaces
• Paper storage
• Terminal Units
Awareness of the possibility for mold contamination, ongoing maintenance, and routine inspections by mold prevention and remediation professionals is key to controlling mold in commercial buildings. Any possible source of humidity, moisture, and water should be monitored regularly, so property owners can immediately respond to water damage, limiting the possibility of mold growth.
Your Responsibility for Property in Kingwood, TX
If you're a property owner, your ability to control the ingredients of mold colonization is crucial in combating its growth. By recognizing the necessary ingredients for mold to grow and learning to appropriately prevent growth, you have already taken an important step in protecting your building. As you commit to responding immediately when signs of damage from water are present, you can be confident that remediation efforts will be successful and effective. Visit http://www.SERVPROkingwoodhumble.com/ for more information on mold.
Water Damage Restoration Explained in 5 Standard Steps
A pipe burst can spill trouble into your Kingwood, TX home. There are, fortunately, companies that help treat the water flooding and damage. The process for these services is often achieved in five steps.
1. Setting Up the Restoration
First, the company specializing in water damage restoration is contacted to start claim processing. Before calling, it’s helpful to prepare information that will be requested:
• Your contact details
• Any insurance details
• Address of your damaged residence
• Time and date of the damage
• Suspected cause
2. Inspecting the Home
The water restoration company will send a specialist to investigate. The inspector first identifies the source of water and prevents it from pouring more water to your residence. This involves typically turning off water to a pipe burst or any other damaged water line.
After stopping any water, he or she will categorize the flooding based on industry guidelines about its source and its danger level. After the setup, the inspection begins. The homeowner is informed of potential problems and advised on repair.
3. Removing the Water
The next step is attempting to remove as much water as possible from your residence. This is necessary to stop mold and allow for the next step of drying. Using industry-grade machines, water is moved away from your residence and discarded. Any items that cannot be saved, such as extremely saturated carpet, will be removed now and replaced later.
4. Dehumidifying and Drying by Directing Air
Most porous materials in your home needs to have the water removed to stop secondary damage that occurs over time if untreated. With specialty machines, airflow is manipulated to create an improved environment for evaporation.
5. Cleaning and Restoring
Damage restoration companies strive to restore everything they can. Furniture, structures and belongings are evaluated and saved when possible using various procedures. Odors from microbes are dealt with using sterilizing procedures, and anything that is irreversibly damage is replaced during this step.
The process may seem daunting, but professionals make sure that it is thorough and correct. With their assistance, a pipe burst doesn’t have to make anything else of yours burst. Visit http://www.SERVPROkingwoodhumble.com/ for more information on water damage.
Beware Mold Growth After Clean Water Mess
Did you walk into your commercial building in Kingwood, TX only to discover there was a pipe burst sometime after everyone left? When water fills your space, it likely fits into one of three categories:
• Category one comes from a clean source, so the water has no contaminants.
• Category two comes from a source that may have bacteria or virus contaminants.
• Category three comes from a source that may have sewage, chemical or spore contaminants.
If your water fits into the first category, you may really feel like you have the time to do research to find the plumber and commercial cleanup crew that best fits your needs. However, even clean water can present a problem.
Standing Water Degrades
If left alone for too long, even a clean water source can start to become contaminated. Imagine you have two feet of water sitting in the basement of your commercial building. You know this water came from a pipe burst, but the pipe carried clean water, so you take your time finding a cleanup crew. As the water sits in your basement, naturally occurring mold spores are able to find a damp home in your basement. Mold can start to grow in as little as 24 to 48 hours when there is a water problem.
Clean Water Picks Up Contaminants
Even if the source of water was clean, you have to think about the path it took to get to its current location. For example, if a pipe burst on the second floor of your building, but most of the water is pooled in the basement, how did that liquid travel there? Chances are it went through the walls and flooring. As it traveled through these building materials, it may have been introduced to mold spores, viruses and bacteria that turn your clean water into contaminated water.
When you're dealing with a water cleanup, you need to act quickly if you don't want to initiate mold cleanup as well. The damage can actually get worse if you allow the flood to sit for too long. Save yourself and your business from added stress, larger bills, and lost work time by getting the cleanup help you need right away. Visit http://www.SERVPROkingwoodhumble.com/ for more information on commercial water damage.
What You Can Do To Minimize Flood Damage
Unfortunately, floods, like most natural disasters, will cause damage no matter what measures you implement to prevent it. That said, there are steps that you can take to minimize flood damage to your commercial building, and they may be simpler than you think:
• Know your flooding risk.
• Line the foundation with straw.
• Move valuables and furniture to a higher location.
• Prevent sewer backup.
• Shut off electricity.
• Remove hazardous materials.
• Anchor the fuel tank.
Knowledge Is Power
The best way to minimize damage is to know what to expect. If your building becomes flooded and you are not prepared, the amount of storm damage that your Kingwood, TX flood cleanup crew will have to deal with may be immeasurable. However, if you know that your building is in a zone with a high flood risk, you have likely taken measures to minimize flooding damage, such as those mentioned above.
Protection Starts From the Outside
The less water that can enter your building, the better. Use slot-in-flood barriers, which are lightweight, made from aluminum and easy to store. These can be used to block off doorways or large openings. Flood resistant doors with a patented rubber sealing system can keep water out of garages, basements and warehouses. Floodstop is a deployable flood barrier system that works in much the same way as sandbags but that is easier to use and causes less of a mess. However, if you are reading this in the face of an impending flood, you may just want to line your foundation with straw, which can help soak up some of the water and minimize internal damage.
When In Doubt, Consult a Professional
The best way to minimize flooding damage is to consult with a Kingwood, TX flood restoration team about your risks and what you can do to minimize them. A professional can inspect your building and advise you on how to do everything from preventing sewer backup to protecting against electrical fires. When in doubt, call a team with experience. Visit http://www.SERVPROkingwoodhumble.com/ for more information on storm damage.
Kingwood and Humble Home Health: Get Back to Your Life Quickly After Residential Water Damage
Flooded Basement in Kingwood
Residential water damage affects millions of homes across the country each year.
Here in the greater Houston metropolitan area, homeowners can rely on SERVPRO of Kingwood and Humble to restore properties to their pre-damaged state. Whether a flash flood, a sewage backup, a broken pipe, or an overflowing dishwasher caused the damage, quick action is necessary. The longer water-logged drywall, flooring, and personal belongings sit in the muck, the more extensive the water damage restoration process will be.
The first step in the process is to contact a professional emergency water damage restoration team. Your local Houston SERVPRO has the expertise and tools needed to properly remediate the water damage in your home, regardless of cause. We work directly with insurance companies to help accelerate the claims and restoration process and are the preferred contractor for many national insurance companies. From the moment you call, through the end of the restoration and rebuilding process, our team is here for you.
The second step in the process when recovering from residential water damage is to carefully document the damage. Photos and videos from the event will help you complete the inventory required by the insurance adjuster. The SERVPRO team can help you with this step as well. If you must vacate your home during the restoration process, we can even help you pack up and move into a temporary residence; we truly are here to make this journey as stress-free as possible.
What should I do in the aftermath of a water damage?
In the immediate aftermath of water damage, it is overwhelming to witness the devastation.
Many personal items, including furniture, fine art, and photographs may appear to be irreparably damaged. However, in many cases, when we are called in immediately after the event, we can carefully clean, disinfect and restore these items. Mildew and mold can take hold quickly because of South Texas weather, so it is essential that you contact us as soon as possible to avoid further damage to your home and personal items.
We know that it may be tempting to handle flood damage cleanup of your Kingwood or Humble home; however this is rarely the best practice. Cleaning up after water effects your home is a time consuming pursuit that requires specialized tools, expertise, equipment, and countless hours. One of the common mistakes we see during mold remediation consultations are walls being closed up before humidity levels were restored to pre-water damage levels. Our highly trained restoration technicians monitor your home closely to determine when it is safe to continue the restoration process.
Our goal at SERVPRO is to get your home properly cleaned, dried, and restored as quickly as possible. We understand the urgency of getting your life back to normal, and we believe that our system that includes all aspects from water extraction through restoration and rebuilding results in less stress, less damage to your property, and less disruption to your daily routine. Call on us when disaster strikes, we are available to restore your home after water, fire, or a storm damages your home.
Feeling the Burn: How To Treat Major and Minor Burns in the Workplace
If workers are present when flames cause fire damage on a commercial property, the people are the first priority.
Feeling the Burn: How To Treat Major and Minor Burns in the Workplace
Fire damage in commercial buildings is not always the result of flames that rage when no one is present. A fire could break out at your business in Kingwood, TX, even when workers are there. If this happens, it is likely that someone or several people may require burn first aid. Knowing what to do in such a situation can get them on the road to recovery faster and may even save their lives.
Ideally, most of the burns sustained by employees during a fire are minor. Minor burns have several symptoms:
• Change in skin color that looks like a sunburn
• Small coverage area
Minor burns do not require emergency care but simply basic first aid. As with a sunburn, you want to cool the affected skin and apply a soothing lotion. Bandage the burn to keep it clean, and it should heal on its own.
A major burn, however, is a side effect of fire damage that requires medical care. There are several ways to know if someone’s burn is more serious:
• Change in texture of skin, causing it to appear extra dry
• Evidence of charring, such as white or black patches
• Diameter larger than three inches
• Located on a sensitive area of the body, such as the face, groin or major joint
The first thing you do when you discover someone at your workplace has a major burn is call 911. While you are waiting for the EMTs to arrive, keep an eye on the victim. Watch for signs of shock or respiratory distress. Keep the burned area covered, and make sure the victim is out of danger.
If workers are present when flames cause fire damage on a commercial property, the people are the first priority. Calling emergency personnel for major burns trumps calling your insurance company or fire remediation specialists. Knowing basic burn first aid can help the healing begin. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROkingwoodhumble.com/.
8 Hidden Places You May Find Mold
Because your home has so many hidden crevices perfect for mold growth, it can be hard to find the source of the musty smell.
Mold can grow in a lot of strange places. Even when you smell a musty odor in your Kingwood, TX, home, you may not be able to find the source. If you want to get to the bottom of the problem, you need to call in experts on mold growth. This team will be able to help you find the hidden pockets of mold. Some likely spots could include the following:
1. Under Flooring: Mold can grow on the back of laminate flooring or carpeting. You may even find mold on wood floors. It can grow here because of trapped moisture.
2. Under the Sink: Leaky pipes can lead to fungus growth under the sink. It may take you a while to notice the mold because of everything in the cupboard.
3. In the Attic: Roof leaks and poor ventilation can lead to a moist environment in your attic space. Because you don't go up there often, it may take you a while to spot this moldy patch.
4. Under the Refrigerator: The drip pan under your refrigerator catches condensation, but then the water has nowhere to go. This creates the perfect habitat for mold growth.
5. On the Wallpaper: Mold loves paper products, which is why the fungus may be growing on the back of your wallpaper. Moisture can get trapped between wallpaper and your wall.
6. Behind the Wall: Drywall often gets moldy because it absorbs moisture. Moldy drywall can be hard to spot because the growth may be on the inside of your walls.
7. Around the AC Unit: The AC creates a lot of condensation. If you don't run your unit every day, you may give mold a chance to start growing.
8. In the Chimney: Most chimneys are covered by a cap, but these aren't always perfect. Water may be able to drip down the sides, which creates a humidity problem.
Because your home has so many hidden crevices perfect for mold growth, it can be hard to find the source of the musty smell. Sometimes you need to get a little extra help. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROkingwoodhumble.com/.
3 Actions To Take After a House Fire
The aftermath of a fire in your Kingwood, TX, home is often difficult to face.
After a fire sweeps through your Kingwood, TX, home, the cleanup process can seem insurmountable. With belongings to salvage and sort, damage to catalog and smoke and soot to clean up, you may not know where to begin. However, there are a few steps you can take to begin the fire restoration process, and they may give you peace of mind as you attempt to recover from a blaze.
1. Contact Your Insurance Company
Once the fire is completely extinguished and you are certain everyone is safe, put in a call to your insurance company as soon as possible. Filing a claim with your fire insurance agent within 24 hours of the incident might help him or her process it with more efficiency. This could mean a quicker payout to help cover the cost of repairs and smoke cleaning.
2. Avoid Disturbing Affected Rooms
While you may want to enter fire-damaged rooms to retrieve certain items, doing so isn’t always safe and could compromise any type of inspection your insurance adjuster performs. If possible, tape off any affected areas and do not let any family members enter. You’ll likely be anxious to start the fire restoration process; however, waiting for insurance and cleanup professionals to arrive first may help the process go more smoothly.
3. Call in Fire Cleanup Experts
The mess left behind after a fire is sometimes considerable, so calling in a company that specializes in smoke cleaning and restoration can be an effective step in recovery. Cleanup technicians who are trained in this area can bring in air scrubbing and fogging machines to remove soot and smoke from your carpeting, walls and ceiling. They may also be able to advise you about photo and document recovery and restoration as well.
The aftermath of a fire in your Kingwood, TX, home is often difficult to face. However, knowing which steps to take right away can streamline the fire restoration process and allow you to recover quickly. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROkingwoodhumble.com/.
Buying a Commercial Building? 3 Circumstances That Might Require a Mold Inspection
When you are planning the purchase of a commercial building in Kingwood, TX, there are many factors to consider, especially when it comes to the cost of inspections. While some are required by law, others may be left at your discretion. Having a mold inspection performed on a property is one such option; however, there are several circumstances where having such an inspection done can benefit you and your investment.
1. If the Building Is Old
Older buildings with plumbing that has not been updated in some time may be more vulnerable to mold because of leaking pipes. Even if there is no visible mold, water damage may be allowing it to grow behind interior walls or under bathroom sinks. If the building you are buying is more than thirty years old, you may want to call in a professional mold remediation company to have its techs check for mold.
2. If There Has Been Previous Water Damage
A building that has suffered previous water damage may have a mold problem, especially if the affected rooms were never cleaned properly. Even minor floods, such as those from overflowing toilets or a burst sink pipe, can contribute to mold growth. It is wise to ask the current owner of the building if he or she is aware of any past incidents that may be causing fungi to grow and ask to see the repair report if one is available.
3. If the Building Is in a Low-Lying Area
Buildings located close to water or that sit in low-lying areas may be more vulnerable to humid conditions and moisture. Having a mold inspection performed on such a property may save you money later, particularly if the current owner has had drainage or flooding problems in the past.
Buying a commercial building in Kingwood, TX, can be a fine investment. However, it is a good idea to have a mold inspection performed in certain cases to ensure you are buying a serviceable property and not someone else’s severe fungi problem. For more information about mold, visit http://www.SERVPROkingwoodhumble.com/.