2021 First Quarter Job of the Quarter
Pittsburgh is no stranger to freezing cold, intense storms during the winter season. Texas, on the other hand, does not usually experience deep freezes or severe winter weather. That’s why, when February hit Texas with Winter Storm Uri, business owners and homeowners didn’t know where to turn for assistance. Our job is to dive headfirst into situations just like these, prepared to help overwhelmed homeowners and businesses pick up the pieces. As soon as the call came in about the storm damage sustained at the Immaculate Conception Catholic School in Denton, we loaded up our specialized storm damage restoration equipment and hit the road for Texas. Our crew began difficult work 1500 miles from home, unsure of when they would be able to return, which makes their successful job well done all the more admirable and worthy of being deemed our “Job of the Quarter.”
Storm Damage at the ICCS
We received a call one Friday morning in February from an adjuster, relaying information about the Immaculate Conception Catholic School in Denton, Texas and the storm damage inflicted upon the school by Winter Storm Uri. Even though the school was more than a twenty hour drive away from home, we knew that the ICCS was in need of immediate help. We had a significant number of tasks on our plate, ranging from removing over one-inch of water damage and installing drywall and carpeting in classrooms and hallways to fixing broken pipes. The most daunting task, however, would involve removing and replacing the entire gym floor, which had sustained water damage. In order to meet every one of the school’s needs, we utilized our specialized storm damage remediation equipment, which included two desiccant humidifiers and fifty fans, in addition to enlisting the help of ten temp workers to further strengthen our team. We knew that the road to the finish line wouldn’t be easy, but our crew kept chugging along, illustrating their hard work, flexibility, and resilience.
We strive to make it “Like it never even happened,” for our customers and, in order to do so, we are dedicated to working quickly. In the case of the ICCS job, our need to complete the job as quickly as possible was further emphasized by the fact that the school was still in session throughout the entire process. In order to complete the job in a timely manner, eight to twelve members of our crew were working tirelessly every day that we were onsite. In this way, we were successful in managing our time, completing our processes of demolition and drying within eight days. This feat was even more impressive considering that we were tasked with relocating six classrooms worth of contents to makeshift storage solutions and, throughout the process, our team took measures to minimize the noise levels of our work.
Our Team Is Resilient
Placing such difficult and physically demanding work on our crew members’ to-do lists, the ICCS job was challenging, especially when considering that we were 1500 miles from Pittsburgh and unsure of when we would be able to return home. Considering the obstacles that our team encountered, their ability to meet SERVPRO’s high standards was commendable and deserve celebration. We’d like to give a special shoutout to Jamie for his leadership in production after initial evaluations were completed. He was meticulous in taking inventory of the school’s storm damage and cataloging the team’s work. With Jamie’s oversight, our crew members kept on top of the mitigation and demolition processes and we were able to meet the school’s specific needs.
Trust SERVPRO’s Emergency Storm Response
Our SERVPRO of Metro Pittsburgh East team is here for you or your customer, whether your storm damage is large-scale like the ICCS job or something smaller. With our years of experience traveling across the country and remediating storm damage of all kinds, we have seen the extent to which storms can wreak havoc on not only homes and businesses, but also on the lives of those who live or work in them. We understand the need to react quickly in order to minimize damage, which is reflected in our motto, “Faster to Any Disaster,” and our 24-Hour Emergency Services. Give us a call immediately at (412) 672-5400 for our trusted Storm Restoration Services, as well as professional Rebuild Services. As a member of SERVPRO’s Disaster Recovery Team, which pools together the resources of SERVPRO franchises nationwide, SERVPRO of Metro Pittsburgh East is capable of responding to storm damage emergencies across the country, no matter the size or scope. We do not wish for another storm comparable to Winter Storm Uri, but in the event that you or your customer experiences storm damage, remember that SERVPRO of Metro Pittsburgh East is standing by and looking forward to the opportunity to help make it “Like it never even happened.”
Why Is Demolition a Necessary Treatment for Smoke Damage?
There’s no questioning the destructive nature of fires in both homes and businesses. All the while, we often forget fire’s often invisible accomplice, smoke, which can do just as much damage. Even though we may not be able to see the effects of smoke damage, it is important to understand that smoke is an invasive substance that merits more restoration efforts than what initially meets the eye. By learning more about smoke’s invasive nature, you can better understand the dangers it poses to homes and commercial business.
Why Is Smoke Invasive?
Seeping into cracks and crevices, smoke has many hiding places. For that reason, attempts at cleaning surfaces will only cause soot particles to smear. The porous quality of drywall also makes for another place in which smoke can hide. When smoke makes its way into drywall, it can also infiltrate insulation, which often results in a need for demolition work in order to eradicate smoke odor in the affected areas. Based on the nature of the affected contents, as well as their proximity to the fire’s source, the intensity of smoke damage may vary.
Surprising Effects of Smoke Damage
After a fire, you may discover shapes resembling spider webs on the walls and ceilings of your home or commercial business. These are not spider webs, but smoke and soot residue left behind by the fire. In this case, smoke damage is visible. However, this is not always the case. For example, the aftermath of protein fires is characteristically invisible, as they do not leave a trail of smoke or soot. This does not mean that they do not leave behind damage. Instead, there is still a lingering smoke odor and soot, which is acidic, can corrode metal objects over time, risking long-term damage.
Why Is Demolition Necessary?
While smoke damage is sometimes invisible, it is important to consider that areas of homes or commercial businesses that have endured smoke damage may still require demolition for a thorough restoration. Demolition work is frequently necessary because scrubbing surfaces does not combat the hidden aspects of smoke damage. Smoke, soot, and smoke odor often take refuge in small cracks and crevices. Additionally, these substances can also sneak into the gaps separating drywall and interior firewalls in homes and businesses. Specifically, smoke odor may infiltrate insulation and hot, humid weather can cause the smell to re-emerge. Scrubbing only scratches at the surface of the much larger issue of invasive smoke damage.
How Do We Combat Invasive Smoke Damage at SERVPRO?
As soon as we arrive onsite at the scene of the fire, we immediately get to work removing charred or burned materials. Additionally, we “chase” the smoke through open areas in an effort to identify every room of the home or business to which the smoke has spread. In this way, we can take thorough inventory of every area requiring smoke damage restoration services. Because water frequently accompanies smoke damage, we also prioritize extracting water and drying the affected area. Continuing the restoration process, we utilize our specialized equipment in order to eliminate the smoke odor. The final step of our process involves sealing off small, difficult-to-reach cracks and crevices that contain lingering smoke odor, using a sealant.
Trust SERVPRO with Smoke Damage
If your home or business has endured a fire that has resulted in smoke damage, be sure to call SERVPRO of Metro Pittsburgh East right away at (412) 672-5400. Our 24/7 Emergency Services can guarantee that your smoke damage will be addressed immediately in order to reduce the spread and invasion of smoke. Our professional team or smoke damage specialists will arrive onsite quickly and get to work combating the issue, using our tried and trusted restoration techniques. From deodorizing affected areas to cleaning contents, we are capable of handling the entire job from start to finish. This means that, in addition to our renowned Fire Damage Restoration Services, we also offer our customers Building Services that range from drywall installation and roofing services to painting and hardwood floor repair. You can trust SERVPRO to have you covered throughout the restoration, demolition, and rebuild processes.
Staying Safe During the Polar Vortex
We go running to find our puffy winter coats, warm hats, gloves, and scarves when the words “the polar vortex” pop up in the forecast. However, many of us only know the polar vortex to indicate frigid temperatures, when there’s actually quite a bit more to it. The National Weather Service defines the polar vortex as the zone of cold, Arctic air that finds its home at the north and south poles. That chilly air can journey south from the north pole, bringing the polar vortex to our neighborhood. Because the freezing temperatures of the polar vortex put us at risk for hypothermia and other hazards related to the cold, it’s essential that we bundle up. Just the same, it’s critical that we take actions to protect our homes and business in order to protect them from the dangers of the polar vortex.
For homes and business, the polar vortex can facilitate the formation of ice ridges on roofs and freezing pipes indoors, which can both lead to water damage inside. Ice ridges block melted snow from draining off of the roof, therefore increasing the risk of the water seeping down into the home or business and causing water damage. Freezing pipes also increase the risk of water damage, as pipes are more susceptible to bursting when the water inside of them freezes. The freezing water expands and can cause pipes to burst as they apply pressure to the pipes. Learn how to best protect your home or business from the dangers of the polar vortex by reading our guide to staying safe in the polar vortex:
Our Polar Vortex Survival Guide
- Ice dams form when snow and ice accumulate. Therefore, you can protect your home or business from ice dams by removing snow off of your roof immediately. If another snow storm is in the forecast, it is a good idea to remove snow before the storm hits. Additionally, it is beneficial to clear your roof during breaks in the storm.
- Insulation is crucial in protecting your home from ice dams. Add an extra layer of insulation in your attic or top floor before a storm if your insulation is insufficient.
- The chances of pipes leaking and creating water damage when they burst is worsened by cracks and lacking insulation. Seal cracks before the cold weather sets in and make sure that your pipes are properly insulated.
- It is important to make sure that your water doesn’t sit idle when temperatures drop, as still, cold water is more likely to freeze. By allowing your faucet to drip, you can decrease the chances of the water in your pipes freezing.
Trust SERVPRO This Winter
Though we can’t see into the future to know how this year will pan out, take comfort in the fact that SERVPRO will be here to help. If the polar vortex knocks on your door and causes water damage to your home or business this winter, call SERVPRO of Metro Pittsburgh East immediately at (412) 672-5400. Our wide range of water damage mitigation services and team of water damage experts will cater to your specific needs. This winter, trust SERVPRO to help you through whatever comes your way.
Trust SERVPRO for Your Next Hardwood Floor Repair
Protecting your commercial business’ hardwood floors is of the utmost importance considering the visible wear and tear that they can experience when exposed to various elements and emergencies such as fires, floods, and storms. Mother Nature is unpredictable, so it is often difficult to prepare for emergencies such as these. Learning about the common causes of hardwood floor damage can, however, can give you a better idea of what to expect from different types of damage to hardwoods and what kinds of remediation services are necessary.
What Causes Damage to Hardwood Floors?
Most hardwood floor damage can be traced back to heat and moisture exposure. This exposure may be the result of major disasters, like fires and floods, or factors as simple as high levels of humidity and heat in your commercial business. Significant damage usually calls for hardwood floor replacement, but minor abrasions can be restored through repair work. Keep reading to learn more about heat and moisture, as well as the ways in which they can impact hardwood floors in commercial businesses:
Hardwood floor boards shrink when exposed to intense heat. The shrinkage can leave hazardous gaps in the flooring, which typically require hardwood floor replacement. Heat damage on a smaller level such as burn marks or smoke and soot damage, however, may only require hardwood floor repair work. You can protect your commercial business’ hardwood floors from experiencing damage due to intense heat by practicing fire safety and making sure that indoor temperatures stay cool.
While heat exposure can cause wood to shrink, subjection to moisture results in wood expanding. Hardwood floors, when exposed to water, absorb moisture, loosen, and can become deformed. They may buckle completely or curl upward or downward in two processes known as cupping and crowning. Another concern when dealing with wet hardwood floors is mold growth. Because mold favors moist and humid environments, hardwood floor boards that have been exposed to moisture can become prime locations for mold growth. You can decrease the risk of mold growth in your commercial business by lowering humidity levels indoors and facilitating air flow. In the event that your commercial business experiences mold growth on your hardwood floors, keep in mind that SERVPRO provides Commercial Mold Restoration services.
We’re Your “One-Stop-Shop”
SERVPRO has you covered if your commercial business is subjected to hardwood floor damage after a disaster. Whether your emergency is water, fire, storm, or mold related, we can take care of the restoration process and complete any additional rebuild or repair work afterward. By trusting SERVPRO to handle the entire job from start to finish, you will eliminate the need to jump through unnecessary hoops that may cost you valuable time and money. We love being our customers’ “one-stop-shop”, guiding them through the entire process until their business is restored to its preloss condition. SERVPRO of Metro Pittsburgh East is so much more than just an emergency fire and water restoration company. Check out our long list of Building Services for a better idea of the wide array of rebuild and repair services that we offer, from hardwood floor repair to fine art restoration. Call us today at (412) 672-5400 to ensure that your commercial business’ hardwood floors receive the thorough repair that they need.
Restoring Fire Damaged Curtains
The structure of both homes and commercial buildings, as well as the objects and belongings that they house, are put at serious risk during a fire. Therefore, it is pertinent that actions are taken to prevent fire damage and, in the event that a fire ignites, the cleanup process is initiated as soon as possible. When it comes to the cleanup process, it is likely that you’ve seen guides detailing methods of cleaning fire-damaged surfaces. You’re more unlikely to find those explaining how to clean fire-damaged textiles and fabrics, such as curtains and draperies, which are extremely flammable and therefore more susceptible to damage during a fire. You may be wondering: What should I do if I discover that my curtains have been damaged in a fire? On the bright side, you don’t need to immediately rush them to the garbage. They will likely require a bit of cleaning, but they can be salvaged. Keep reading to learn how to take care of your fire damaged curtains.
How to Care for Fire-Damaged Curtains
The destruction of a fire can leave behind two different varieties of fire damage, which include soot damage and smoke damage. It is possible that your curtains endured either one or both of these types of damage during the fire. Before the cleaning process begins, it is important to understand that each requires its own, specific cleaning procedure.
When curtains are inflicted with soot damage, particles of soot, which are oil-based, infiltrate the fabric of the curtains. If these soot particles are not removed quickly, your curtains can become stained and undergo significant damage that is difficult to remove. Once the soot particles are gone, the cleaning process can begin. While you have a multitude of cleaning options, know that SERVPRO provides drapery cleaning services that can effectively cleanse your curtains of any remaining fire damage and, with the help of our specialized equipment, restore them to their preloss condition.
Like soot damage, immediate action is also necessary when it comes to smoke damage, as eliminating the odor that accompanies smoke takes precedence over all other steps of the cleaning process. Over time, the smoke odor can embed itself into the fabric and cause additional damage. For a quick and efficient smoke odor removal, look no further than SERVPRO. Your curtains can be salvaged with our trustworthy odor removal and deodorization treatments. Don’t forget that we also offer professional Drapes and Blinds Services that can handle the rest of the cleaning process for your curtains following the smoke odor removal.
Preventing Additional Fire Damage
In order to avoid additional fire damage during the cleanup process, be sure to be aware of actions of occurrences that could put your home or business at an increased risk. Touching fire damaged curtains without gloves is not advised. It is also important to acknowledge that curtains can oftentimes become saturated with water during the fire extinguishing process, which increases the threat of mold growth. However, you can reduce this risk by making sure that wet curtains are dried as soon as possible. Another beneficial, preventative measure is facilitating air circulation in your home or business, which can be achieved by opening windows. Additionally, if you are on the market to purchase new curtains, take into consideration the idea of investing in fire-resistant curtains, which may prove helpful in decreasing the chances that your curtains sustain damage during a future fire. It is crucial to never underestimate the importance of fire safety. Be sure to practice fire safety in your home or business and regularly replace the batteries in your smoke detectors.
Got Fire Damage? Protect Your Belongings with SERVPRO
SERVPRO of Metro Pittsburgh East is standing by in the event that your home or commercial business is impacted by a fire. We offer an array of fire damage restoration services as well as contents restoration services that will help your home or business and its contents make a full recovery after a destructive fire. For professional restoration services that will protect your curtains and other belongings, call SERVPRO of Metro Pittsburgh East at (717) 510-6779 today. To learn more about our services, visit our Your Belongings and Fire Damage page.
What You Should Know About Black Mold in Your Shower
A tranquil, refreshing shower at the beginning or end of the day is your time to relax and destress, so mold growth is never a welcome discovery. Because mold grows best in moist, humid conditions, showers are not uncommon locations to find mold growing. One of the many different varieties of mold, black mold, is often depicted as a serious health hazard, taking on the nickname “toxic mold”. But is black mold actually worthy of its intimidating reputation? What does it mean if the mold that you discover in your shower is black mold? Keep reading to find out.
What is Black Mold?
In the next paragraph, we’ll provide a brief overview of black mold. You can visit our page “Black Mold, What is It?” for additional information describing black mold and its effects.
“Stachybotrys chartarum” is the scientific term for black mold, which is just one variety of mold. Medical News Today reports that mycotoxins, which are toxic substances, are released by black mold. These substances can result in a range of health effects. All the while, evidence that such symptoms result directly from the inhalation of black mold spores has been inconclusive. On the other hand, we do know that many varieties of mold cause health effects. Therefore, regardless of the type of mold that you discover in your shower, eliminating the mold immediately is of the utmost importance to the health of everyone in your home. Attempting to clean your shower on your own may appear to be helpful, but it can do more harm than good. Instead, seek professional black mold treatment immediately by giving SERVPRO of Metro Pittsburgh East a call at (412) 672-5400. With our extensive training and equipment specifically designed to tackle any size mold infestation, we’re ready to make your shower’s mold growth “Like it never even happened.”
Black Mold Infestation in Your Shower
Now that you’ve learned some of the basics of black mold, you can make an educated guess as to whether the mold that you’ve discovered is indeed black mold. Usually, black mold will have a slimy texture and be either dark green or black in color. Remember, the shower can be a breeding ground for any type of mold, not just black mold. That’s why, regardless of the type of mold in your shower, be sure to call us right away.
Preventing Black Mold Growth
You may be wondering, “What can I do to prevent mold growth in my home?” One of the first things you can do is make it a habit to keep a fan running or a window open while you or anyone else in your home takes a shower. This will prevent mold growth by maintaining proper ventilation and decreasing humidity in your bathroom. In order to further reduce lingering moisture in your shower, you can wipe up the water that remains or use a squeegee on your shower walls after taking a shower. Lastly, it is important to be cognizant of pipes in your bathroom, as broken or leaking pipes can be a major source of moisture accumulation. In the event that you discover a leak or broken pipe in your bathroom, be sure to dry the moisture and repair the pipe as quickly as possible in order to avoid mold.
Don’t Waste Time: Call SERVPRO Immediately
With years of mold remediation under our belts, we’re no strangers to mold of all varieties here at SERVPRO of Metro Pittsburgh East. If you call us about mold growth in your shower, we know how important it is that we get to work immediately in order to protect your home and those living in it. That’s why we offer 24/7 Emergency Service and promise a speedy response time. No matter the size of your shower’s mold dilemma, SERVPRO possesses the required training, expertise, and equipment to provide the unique mold and water remediation services that you need. If you spot mold during your next shower, don’t panic. Call us right away at (412) 672-5400 for our trusted black mold removal and mold remediation services. You can also learn more about the mold services that we offer by checking out our website’s mold resources, including our Overview of Mold Services and Mold Remediation Process
Hidden Locations of Mold Growth in Commercial Businesses
A groan-worthy sight, mold is always an unwanted guest in residential properties and commercial businesses alike. In commercial businesses, several hazards often accompany mold, including interruptions to business, dangers to the overall structure of the building, and health effects for employees. In their “Guide to Mold in the Workplace”, the Occupational Health and Safety Administration describes mold growth in commercial businesses and its dangers. In the article, the OSHA states that on “virtually any substance”, mold can not only grow, but thrive. Above all, the article seeks to warn commercial businesses that all indoor mold growth should be prevented. With an understanding of the most common areas of mold growth in commercial businesses, you can protect your commercial business from enduring an unwanted mold infestation.
1. Windows and Doors
One of the most common ways in which moisture enters commercial businesses is through doors and windows. The risk is especially high on days with high humidity levels or heavy rain. Additionally, condensation on doors and windows can present another risk for moisture accumulation inside commercial businesses. In the event that moisture accumulates around windows and doors, dry the moisture as soon as possible in order to prevent mold growth.
2. HVAC and AC Units
It’s rare to find a commercial business that doesn’t have either an HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) unit or an air conditioning unit. While they’re incredibly common, they can become a cause for concern if they aren’t maintenanced or begin to malfunction. Mold can grow as a result of leaks or increased humidity levels throughout the building that stem from a malfunctioning HVAC or AC unit. Making sure that your business’ HVAC or AC unit receives the regular maintenance and inspections it needs can be beneficial in avoiding such problems. On a regular basis, be sure to also change your unit’s filter and clean its drip pan, as doing so is helpful in keeping your unit from becoming obstructed. If you notice mold growth in or around your business’ HVAC or AC unit, professional assistance is necessary. Be sure to get in contact with a certified commercial mold inspector to assess the situation. Additionally, consider our HVAC Cleaning Services to make sure that your commercial business’ HVAC unit receives the maintenance it needs. Learn more about our Commercial Mold Remediation Services here and give us a call for our 24 Hour Emergency Service.
3. Employee Areas
Often tucked away and out of sight in commercial businesses, employee bathrooms, kitchens, and other spaces can be at risk for mold growth. These employee areas include appliances such as sinks and toilets that involve water. If these areas are not inspected frequently, pools of water can accumulate and trigger mold growth. However, the risk for a mold problem in these areas can be decreased with regular cleaning and examination.
Remember: It Can Happen Anywhere
Even though we’ve described the aforementioned areas as vulnerable to mold growth, any surface or substance in a commercial business can be at risk for a mold problem. Preventing mold growth in your commercial business can be facilitated through frequent inspections. Be on the lookout for spaces with accumulating moisture, especially those that have previously experienced leaks, and if you discover moisture, thoroughly dry the surface as quickly as possible.
Call SERVPRO for Your Business’ Mold Remediation Needs
However, if you discover significant mold growth that is out of your control, pick up the phone and call SERVPRO of Metro Pittsburgh East at (412) 672-5400 today. After receiving your call, our team will arrive immediately, ready to hit the ground running. More information about our Mold Restoration Process can be found here. Here at SERVPRO, we are committed to protecting your business’ schedule, minimizing any disruptions to production and protecting both your employees and customers from the health hazards posed by mold. This is what sets us apart from other commercial mold restoration companies in Pittsburgh. While a mold infestation in your commercial business can be overwhelming, know that you can rely on SERVPRO and our team of skilled commercial mold remediation specialists to get the job done.
Pete Akey: Our Employee of the Quarter
Our “Employee of the Quarter” title goes to one outstanding employee every quarter. Here at SERVPRO of Metro Pittsburgh East, our selection was none other than Pete Akey! Read the following excerpt from our latest quarterly newsletter to learn more about Pete:
SERVPRO of Metro Pittsburgh East’s “Employee of the Quarter” for Quarter 4 is Pete Akey! Since starting at SERVPRO of Metro Pittsburgh East as a Marketing Representative for the previous ownership in 2003, Pete’s role has changed drastically. During the transition between ownerships, Pete adapted to new challenges and has been integral to SERVPRO of Metro Pittsburgh East’s success. Never hesitating or complaining, Pete has taken on multiple roles over the years in order to help the office grow and thrive. As Senior Operations Manager of the Metro Pittsburgh East office, he ran the show with admirable enthusiasm, devotion, and organizational skills.
Onto Even Bigger and Better Things
Pete’s passion for his job and the company is crystal clear to everyone who works with him. He’s the kind of employee who is always present and willing to chip in. Recently, Pete has taken on a new Program Specialist position, a role that will allow him to work with all three of SERVPRO Team Wall’s offices and share his 20 years of industry experience with others.
Thank You, Pete!
Pete is a tremendous asset to the company and we cannot even begin to thank him f
What Do I Do After A House Fire: Moving Forward
When a fire ignites in your home, your home and your personal belongings are placed in jeopardy. Fires can leave a path of destruction, complete with soot and smoke damage. In addition to the physical damage, a fire can alter and change your life as you know it, leaving you ready to do whatever you can in order to return things to normal. Before taking action to combat fire damage in your home, it is important to understand that just one wrong move can exacerbate the damage. There are two crucial pieces when confronting fire damage in your home: mitigating the damage and preventing future fires. For several of our expert Fire Damage Tips and steps that you can take to protect your home from future fires, keep reading.
Fire Damage Restoration Tips
With our many years of experience in mitigating fire damage and cleaning smoke damage, we have compiled a list of Fire Damage Tips. The following may be helpful in understanding the safest ways of dealing with your home’s fire damage:
- Decrease Movement
Even the act of placing your foot down on the floor can cause fire soot particles to jump up into the air and land on nearby objects, therefore imposing further damage. In order to best protect your home’s furniture, upholstery, carpets, and other objects from unnecessary damage, refrain from walking throughout your home as best you can and if you must move, be sure to exercise caution.
- Don’t Attempt to Clean Without Professional Guidance
More harm than good can come from unguided efforts to clean fire-damaged items and surfaces in your home. Rather, consult skilled fire damage cleaners prior to taking any actions to clean damaged objects. It is also wise to steer clear of any electronic devices or appliances in your home, as coming into contact with them after they have been exposed to intense heat, fire, or water can be incredibly dangerous.
- Keep Hands Clean
When cleaning and handling fire-damaged objects, be sure that your hands are clean in an effort to protect items from enduring any additional damage from soot particles or other substances. Wearing clean gloves throughout the fire damage cleanup process can be helpful in achieving this goal.
Preventing Future Fires
While restoring your home after a destructive fire, it is important to take the time to protect your home from a similar situation happening again. According to the American Red Cross, the following are a few preventative measures that are effective in preventing future fire damage or smoke damage to the home:
- Check on Your Smoke Detectors
Smoke detector batteries should be checked and replaced on a regular basis in order to keep smoke detectors functioning to the best of their ability. Be sure that your smoke detectors are located in different areas of your home so that they are able to pick up smoke from anywhere. By interconnecting the smoke detectors in your home, you can save valuable time, as all of the alarms in your home will sound when one detector senses smoke.
- Fire-Proof Your Home
There are plenty of options these days for fire-resistant home furnishings, from curtains to sofas. By investing in fire-resistant furnishings for your home, you can reduce the chances of any future fire spreading quickly.
- Limit Fire Risks
In even the most trivial activities, such as using electronic devices or heating rooms of your home, there are some steps that you can take to prevent a fire from igniting. Many residential fires ignite as a result of heating sources, so it is important to check that your stove tops, chimney, or other heating sources are clean before putting them to use. Lastly, it is imperative that old, frayed, or damaged electrical cords are not used, even if they still appear to do their job. Therefore, it is important not to wait to replace damaged cords.
Fire Damage? Call SERVPRO
Residential fires often leave homeowners overwhelmed and confused as to what comes next. This is where we come in. Pick up the phone and call SERVPRO of Metro Pittsburgh East at (412) 672-5400 for our professional restoration fire damage expertise and guidance. Our team will respond immediately and arrive onsite to assess the damage. SERVPRO has your back and is standing by, ready to lend a helping hand to give you peace of mind after any fire damage or smoke damage emergency in your home. For more of our Fire Damage Tips that can help you understand what you can do before help arrives, click here.
How to Prepare for a Polar Vortex
Every winter, the word "polar vortex" means to fit in our warmest winter coats, caps, and gloves. The Polar Vortex refers to a region of cold air which, according to the National Weather Service, gravitates towards the poles of the Earth. We feel the Polar Vortex as the air flows south through the jet stream during the winter, giving us our own piece of Arctic air. It causes almost intolerable, cold weather. It could come as a surprise to know that our homes and businesses, too, will suffer from the cold. Just like we need our thick coats and warm scarves, so do our homes and businesses.
Effects of Polar Vortex
Our homes and businesses can fall victim to the freezing of pipes and ice dams, all of which can lead to severe water damage during the "polar vortex" of winter. It is cold, Arctic temperatures will cause the water within the pipes to freeze and expand, which will cause the pipes to burst. On the roof, as snow and ice build-up, ice ridges will form and block melting snow from leaving the roof. This is called "Ice Damming" which allows water to leak through the roof and into the building.
How to Prepare
- Clean snow off of the roof as soon as possible. Be sure to remove any lingering snow or ice from a previous storm off the roof first.
- Be sure that your attic or top floor is properly insulated before a storm. If your amount of insulation is lacking, adding extra insulation may be helpful.
- Before a storm, be sure that all pipes are insulated and any cracks are sealed.
- When temperatures drop, let your faucets drip in order to keep water flowing.
- Maintain consistent, warm temperatures inside of your home or business. Additionally, make certain that your insulation is sufficient throughout the home or building