If you suspect you have mold in your home, call the professionals at SERVPRO of Park Cities for information about our mold remediation services.
SERVPRO of Park Cities remediates mold issues and restores the area to normal, natural mold levels that are safer and more healthy.
Mold is present almost everywhere. Microscopic mold spores float along in the air and can enter a house through windows, doors, and HVAC systems. Clothing and pets also transport mold. Mold can begin to cause health effects when spores are exposed to moisture and grow into colonies.
Homeowners should beware of restoration businesses that guarantee to remove all mold since it is technically impossible to remove every spore of mold from a home or business. However, mold colonies can be remediated, and the moisture that causes colonies to form can be addressed.
Five Common Types of Mold
Often found on dead or live plant material, this type of mold lives both outside and inside homes. It is usually dark green, brown, or black in color. It grows on damp wallpaper, HVAC insulation, wet carpet, and acrylic painted walls.
Trichoderma is most commonly found in forests, wood, and soil. It can make its way into the home, especially where water damage has occurred. This type of mold can also be brought indoors by way of surfaces that come in contact with it outdoors before entering the home, such as clothing, shoes, and pets.
While some species of Penicillium have greatly benefited the world, this fungus can have health effects if found in large quantities in the home. Penicillium can be found growing on fruits and vegetables or living on walls, carpets, or furniture. This mold species is often easy to identify since it can be either yellow, green, or blue in color.
- Stachybotrys Chartarum
More commonly known as “black mold,” mold growth from this type of fungus is often found in HVAC systems and other areas with consistent moisture. It can be either green or black in color and has an identifiable musty smell that can lead homeowners to growing colonies.
High humidity levels can cause this common type of mold to be found in the home. One variety of Aspergillus called Aspergillus fumigatus is often found in pillows.
While these five types of mold are some of the most common, there over 10,000 different species of mold.
Most people are not bothered by exposure to mold spores, but a small percentage experience health effects. If there are large mold colonies growing in a home, the homeowner may want to bring in a mold remediation specialist for mitigation services that will restore more normal mold levels.
Before mold remediation can begin, any sources of water or moisture must be addressed. According to the Texas Department of State Health Services, “Mold thrives in continuously wet conditions and can start to grow within 24 hours after a flood.” If the water damage or moisture buildup is not resolved first, the mold may return. Because mold spores thrive on moisture, homeowners need to remember that even higher-than-normal indoor humidity can support mold growth. Keep indoor humidity below 45%.
A qualified restoration company understands the science behind mold and mold growth, and a skilled team has the training and expertise to remediate mold colonies in a home or business. The technicians at SERVPRO of Park Cities are the experts in mold mitigation and remediation. As IICRC certified professionals, they are trained to target and resolve any mold outbreak. The team includes an Applied Microbial Remediation Specialist, a Water Damage Restoration Technician, and an Applied Structural Drying Technician.
While every scenario is different and requires a unique solution, the general mold remediation process proceeds as follows:
- Emergency Contact
- Inspection and Mold Damage Assessment
- Mold Containment
- Air Filtration
- Removing Mold and Mold-Infested Materials
- Cleaning Contents and Belongings
Because of the integral role water plays in mold colony growth, the initial focus is to stop the source of water feeding the mold. Then, SERVPRO isolates the affected area using a negative air pressure chamber. The team engages in ongoing mold remediation training and invests in the latest equipment to better serve clients.
For more information about mold remediation, call SERVPRO of Park Cities at (214) 522-3000.
Winter Weather Is Here
No matter the disaster, SERVPRO of Park Cities is there faster than anybody else to make sure you get the help you need.
It’s that time of year again, where Winter Weather is invading our daily life. Winter storms can range from a light snow over a few hours to a blizzard with blinding, wind-driven snow that lasts for several hours or more. Icy Conditions are typical within our area, and many winter storms are accompanied by dangerously low temperatures and sometimes by strong winds, icing, sleet and freezing rain.
One of the primary concerns is the winter weather's ability to knock out heat, power, and communications services to your home or office, sometimes for days at a time. Heavy snowfall and extreme cold can immobilize an entire region as was evident from last years storm that shut down DFW for days.
The National Weather Service refers to winter storms as the “Deceptive Killers” because most deaths are indirectly related to the storm. Instead, people die in traffic accidents on icy roads and of hypothermia from prolonged exposure to cold. So it’s extremely important to be prepared for winter weather before it strikes.
Over the next few weeks, we’ll be posting ideas and tips on how to prepare before weather hits, what to do once it’s here, and how to respond after the weather is over, so check back often!
BEFORE WINTER STORMS
To prepare for a winter storm you should do the following:
· Before winter approaches, add the following supplies to your emergency kit:
o Rock salt, kitty litter, or more environmentally safe products to melt ice on walkways. Visit the Environmental Protection Agency for a complete list of recommended products.
o Sand to improve traction.
o Snow shovels and other snow removal equipment.
o Sufficient heating fuel. You may become isolated in your home and regular fuel sources may be cut off. Store a good supply of dry, seasoned wood for your fireplace or wood-burning stove.
o Adequate clothing and blankets to keep you warm.
o Make a Family Communications Plan. Your family may not be together when disaster strikes, so it is important to know how you will contact one another, how you will get back together and what you will do in case of an emergency.
o A NOAA Weather Radio broadcasts alerts and warnings directly from the NWS for all hazards. You may also sign up in advance to receive notifications from your local emergency services.
o Bring pets/companion animals inside during winter weather. Move other animals or livestock to sheltered areas with non-frozen drinking water.
If you have burst pipes due to winter weather call SERVPRO of Park Cities, at 214-522-3000! We are, faster to any disaster™!
2024, New Year Resolutions
Home resolutions are important to consider in the new year.
Every year, we sit down and start thinking about resolutions we want for ourselves. But new year's resolution's for your home are just as important as the one's you set for yourself. We’ve come up with some new year’s resolutions for your home that will make it more efficient in 2024.
- Create a plan for cleaning - If you don't like to clean yourself SERVPRO can help. We offer residential cleaning services ad well as specialty cleaning services such as carpet cleaning and upholstery cleaning.
- Focus on Indoor Air Quality - Did you know that SERVPRO of Park Cities does air duct cleaning? Keeping your air ducts and HVAC ducts in top condition is an important part of preserving the comfort and functionality of your residence or business.
- Tackle a home improvement project - SERVPRO of Park Cities has an entire Reconstruction Department that can help you with any remodel project you have been dreaming of.
- Commit to home maintenance - Start the year by changing your HVAC filters, inspecting the water heater, and inspecting the foundation or your crawl space. All of these things can cause water damage later if they are not properly maintained.
- Invest in upgrades - Your home is an investment so take the time to invest back in it. Technology can help to monitor and alert you if you have a leak or intrusion. Some examples are water sensors or automatic shut off switches. If you don't already have these upgrades and have a water damage, don't worry SERVPRO can help!
Meter the Meter
Your water meter can help you identify leaks.
Did you know that your water meter can help identify hidden leaks at home?
While some plumbing leaks are obvious, others aren't and can cause extensive damage in your home. Most pipes are behind drywall, which is pleasing to the eye but not conducive to catching leaks.
These hidden issues within our pipes can be the result of many different problems, from sediment buildup to acidic water, but are more commonly the result of wear and tear due to old age. If leaks go unnoticed for an extended period of time they can lead to an unstable structure, or worse, mold.
But you can use your meter to help find hidden leaks and avoid potential damage.
Follow These Steps
- Don't use any water for at least 20 minutes, and then check the leak indicator on your meter. If the indicator is moving - you possibly have a leak.
- Write down the numbers from the meter and then go an additional hour without using any water in your home. Check the meter again and if the numbers have changed then it is highly likely you have a leak.
- You can narrow down the location or your leak by shutting the water completely off and then rechecking the meter. If the indicator stopped moving once the water is off - that means the leak is happening inside your home. If it continues to move then the leak is outside.
- Call a plumber to help uncover the exact location and fix the leak.
- Then, call SERVPRO of Park Cities at 214-522-3000 to help clean up any damage from the leak.
Be ready for anything in 2023.
A new year means new beginning. It’s in these new beginnings that we need to remember to take care of the things important to us, and for a lot of people that includes their homes. When emergencies happen in your homes you’re left with very little options. SERVPRO offers some of the leading services in the industry when it comes to home restoration. Preparation is the best way to minimize the aftermath of any disaster. Double checking and securing at risk areas in your home is the first and most crucial step to dealing with these unfortunate events.
While in the Winter season it’s critical to remember the importance of leaving the faucets running slightly. Check the plumbing in the home for cracks and breaks in any of the lines. Christmas decorations and trees should be stored and put away properly. Give SERVPRO Park Cities a call so you can learn more about the Emergency Ready Plan. The ERP is a no cost assessment your local franchise can provide for any facility at the end of which they will leave you with a detailed plan on the most efficient way to get back to business. The information provided to you includes full comprehensive information about your facility including, emergency contacts, shut off valve locations, and priority areas. While you get an idea of what your first steps are to take, it’s important that you call someone to get help ASAP. SERVPRO Park Cities has over 50 years of experience and can be a big asset especially if we have already familiarized ourselves with the facility.
Whether its water damage, storm damage, fire damage, or even mold SERVPRO Park Cities can help. Give us a call at 214-522-3000 to assist you with all your restoration needs.
The First Sign of Damage May Not be the First Problem
Water can accumulate before it leaks through something.
Just because you see a sign of water damage doesn't mean the problem just started. Often, water accumulates before it leaks through something, leaving your house at risk for mold.
Obvious signs include brown, yellow or rust colored spots on walls or ceilings. Excessive moisture can also cause paint to crack, peel or bubble.
If you see black spots, it is likely mold and you'll need a licensed specialist to take care of it. SERVPRO of Park Cities is certified to properly handle mold mediation.
Don't forget to look down either. Hardwoods that have buckled or cupped could have water trapped beneath them. Stains or discoloration on linoleum indicate prolonged water exposure.
In both cases, floors will need to be removed and sub floors dried properly before replacing the wood or linoleum.
Always check your water bill for changes as well. A sudden increase may indicate a leak somewhere inside or outside the house.
Our team of experienced professionals can help identify the source and extent of water damage in your home. We can manage remediation, restoration and reconstruction services as well. Call us for 24-hour emergency services at 214-522-3000.
Look out for Leaks
Know where to look for leaks to avoid water damage.
While we don't get super cold winters here in Dallas, we should be using less water than summer months. With this in mind - check your water bill to make sure you don't see any unusual spikes According to the EPA, a typical family of 4 doesn’t use more than 12K gallons in a winter month. If your bill shows higher use – it’s probably a good idea to look for leaks.
Another way to know if you have a water leak is to watch your water meter before and after a 2 hour time period when you know you didn’t use any water. If it indicates that you did – then something is leaking somewhere.
These are the most common causes of water leaks in a residential home:
- Washing Machines
- Hot Water Heaters
- Ice Machines
- Outdoor Faucets
- Indoor Shower Heads and Faucets
If you do find a leak, it can often be fixed by tightening a valve, cleaning a drain or replacing a washer depending on the item that is leaking. There are many tutorials that you can watch to guide you through a simple fix like one of these. If you complete the DIY leak repairs but still find water – then call SERVPRO of Park Cities to come inspect the damage. Often our technicians can diagnose where the leak originated while working on site.
If you have any concerns about potential water leaks and subsequent damage, call us at 214-522-3000. We're always here to help.
Hassle Free Holidays
Practice fire safety and keep your holidays hassle free.
As we head into holiday season, the temperature drops and we start to spend more time indoors. We decorate with lights, cook big meals, burn fall scented candles and eventually turn on the heater when it gets cold enough. These things increase our holiday spirit – but they also increase the chance of a home fire.
We’ve got some winter wisdom for you to stay safe from fire:
Heed the Heaters:
- If using portable heaters, make sure they are in good working order with no frayed cords.
- Place them at least 3 feet away from anything combustible, such as paper, clothing or blankets.
- Don’t leave them on when you leave home alone or while you sleep – heaters should always be monitored.
Contain the Candles:
- Keep candles in sturdy containers that cannot be easily knocked over and make sure the flame isn’t close to something that could ignite.
- Never leave a candle unattended and make sure to extinguish them before leaving the room.
- Consider using battery operated candles to reduce your risk even further.
Tend the Tree:
- If you put up a live Christmas tree, make sure you keep it well watered at all times.
- Always unplug lights when not in use, or have them set up on a timer to automatically turn off.
- Keep trees away from heat vents and other heat sources.
- Make sure your tree stand can hold your tree securely so that it doesn’t fall.
Preventative measures such as having your chimney inspected and making sure your smoke detectors are working are also important winter prep-steps.
If you experience a fire at your home this winter call SERVPRO of Park Cities anytime at 214-522-3000.
Avoid Turkey Troubles
Deep fryers can make things delicious, but also dangerous.
Who doesn't love a deep friend turkey? You might think this is an easy DIY - but failed fryers are one of the most common sources of fire damage throughout the fall.
Here are some tips to keep your turkey trouble-free.
- Don't Use Too Much Oil- Even a small amount of oil can catch flame if it comes into contact with a burner. If the pot is too full, oil can spill when you insert the turkey. The U.S. Fire Administration suggests that you first place the turkey in a pot with water so you will know the correct amount of oil.
- Don’t Leave a Fryer Unattended– deep fryers may not have thermostat controls and can overheat to the point of combustion. It’s crucial to stay close and to check the temperature of the oil often. Deep Fat Fryers are also easy to tip over – so make sure the area is secure and monitored.
- Never Use a Fryer Inside– these should always be used outdoors on a solid surface (not a deck or under a patio cover.)
- No Frozen Turkeys in the Fryer- Make sure you thaw your turkey completely prior to cooking. When a frozen turkey comes into contact with high temperature oil it causes lots of steam. The steam can make the oil boil over and catch fire.
- Keep a Fire Extinguisher & Pot Holders Nearby- make sure you have a fire extinguisher and well-insulated potholders nearby since the lid, sides and handles get insanely hot and you could end up with harsh burns if not careful.
- Keep Others Safe- never let children or pets near the fryer when in use or after use as the oil can remain hot for hours.
SERVPRO of Park Cities wishes you and your family a safe and happy Thanksgiving!
Merry & Bright
Make sure you blow out candles and turn off lights.
Christmas items are already in stores and people are getting the decorating bug. As you start brightening up your home and yard, make sure you stay fire-safe. Here is some pre-winter wisdom to keep in mind:
Candles give a room a cozy vibe and smell delicious, but proper usage is key to keeping them safe. Be sure they are on a stable surface with plenty of ventilation and that they aren't near anything flammable such as dried flowers or paper decorations. Battery powered candles are also a great option!
If you love a live Christmas tree, you have to keep it well watered to avoid dry branches which can easily catch fire. It's also important to unplug the lights when not in use or have them set up on a timer to automatically shut off.
Before you get the fireplace going, have your chimney inspected and make sure your smoke detectors work. Don't let the fallen leaves pile up too much, especially if there is a dry spell.
We hope your holidays are hassle free, but should you experience any fire or smoke damage, SERVPRO of Park Cities is here to help. Call us at 214-522-3000.