Mold Control and Prevention
The key to mold control is moisture control. Mold produces tiny spores to reproduce.
When mold spores land on a damp surface, they may begin to grow and digest whatever
they are growing on in order to survive. Typically, mold grows and digests organic
materials such as wood, paper, carpet, and foods.
To prevent or minimize the risk of mold growth, early detection and removal of excess
moisture are the key. In areas that are not commonly inspected such as crawl spaces and
basements, there are moisture sensors that can be installed that will alert the consumer
when moisture reaches unacceptable levels. Moisture sensors can be purchased at retail
outlets such as Home Depot, Lowes, and Ace Hardware.
Very few homeowners inspect their crawl spaces throughout the year. A simple
reminder to do so would be to inspect your crawl space when the time changes twice
each year. Installing lights in the crawl space that can be turned on or plugged in can be
very useful by illuminating the crawl space prior to entering.
Bathrooms are another area of the home where mold or mildew is typically found. Poor
ventilation or excess water on the floor and walls are the primary causes. Inspect your
exhaust fans and vents to ensure they are working properly and the moisture is being
vented completely out of the home and not into the attic.
According to the EPA, mold growth covering an area of ten square feet or less can be
remedied by the property owner. If there are larger areas affected by mold, a mold
remediation professional such as SERVPRO is strongly recommended.
Fungi and mold
Fungi and mold naturally occur in our environment. In fact, over 100,000 kinds of fungi have been identified. Even though some forms of mold can add value to our lives, other forms can be harmful. Excessive amounts of mold, different types of mold, and/or exposure to molds may present health effects for some people.
The intrusion of water into your home or place of business can result in mold growth. Water intrusions can result from storm damage, plumbing or equipment failures, long-standing leaks, and poor humidity control. When water is present and is not immediately addressed, the resulting damage can present an increased risk of potentially harmful mold growth. If the humidity and moisture levels in a water-damaged environment are not promptly returned to normal, mold spores may grow and multiply.
SERVPRO of Boise handles water damage every day and knows that prompt action is very important to prevent mold growth. If there is an ongoing moisture problem in the building, be on the lookout for:
- Presence of visible mold.
- Strong musty odors, which are a strong indicator of mold.
- Any evidence of past moisture problems.
- Excessive humidity.
These conditions may require the expertise of a qualified indoor air quality/environment professional to inspect the building for mold growth and water damage problems.
If you think you may have a mold problem, call SERVPRO of Boise today to protect your health and your property
Why SERVPRO of Boise?
Why SERVPRO of Boise? Unmatched customer experience! One of the keys to producing an unmatched customer experience is to provide effective communication during a stressful and uncertain time for our customers. Our approach at SERVPRO of Boise includes:
Inspecting the Project and Customer Consultation – Identify and shut off the source of the water damage. Determine the category of water causing the damage. SERVPRO will then conduct a safety inspection and damage assessment to prepare an emergency scope and restoration plan. Discuss the customer’s expectations and the restoration scope and plan.
Project documentation – Project documentation is one of the most important parts of the service and work performed by SERVPRO. SERVPRO is the industry leader in project documentation providing services including, but not limited to, material readings, moisture mapping, atmospheric readings, 3D imaging, thermal imaging, psychrometric calculations, mold testing, and virtual tour imaging.
Emergency Services – Extract water if necessary. Protect and preserve contents. Remove unsalvageable materials. Set drying equipment in the affected areas. Establish drying goals. Wear appropriate PPE if needed.
Post EMS Mitigation – Execute a drying strategy, demolition of building materials as needed, cleaning of contents, and any other service to restore your property and contents to preloss condition. Schedule an appointment with the reconstruction team to coordinate the replacement of any building materials removed during mitigation.
Monitoring/Project Completion – When EMS has been completed, the project enters the monitoring phase where SERVPRO professionals monitor daily the drying progress of the structure and materials. Once drying goals have been reached, we will conduct a final walkthrough with the customer to ensure we have met or exceeded your expectations. Reconstruction work will begin as soon as possible following the walkthrough.
When the customer feels reassured about what to expect and when their lives will return to a preloss condition, their confidence in a restoration contractor increases. An unmatched customer experience is achieved when the process appears to be seamless and they believe we truly care about them.
Call SERVPRO of Boise today.
When Storms or Floods Hit Boise, SERVPRO is Ready!
SERVPRO of Boise specializes in storm and flood damage restoration. Our crews are highly trained and we use specialized equipment to restore your property to its pre-storm condition.
Since we are locally owned and operated, we are able to respond quicker with the right resources, which is extremely important. A fast response lessens the damage, limits further damage, and reduces the restoration cost.
We're Highly Trained Storm Damage Specialists
As a leader in storm and water damage restoration, SERVPRO of Boise has the specialized training and expertise to restore your home back to its pre-storm condition. Our restoration process puts an emphasis on scientific drying techniques, progress monitoring, and documentation.
- Water Damage Restoration Technician
- Applied Structural Drying Technicians
Resources to Handle Floods and Storms
When storms hit Boise, we can scale our resources to handle a large storm or flooding disaster. We can access equipment and personnel from a network of over 1,700 Franchises across the country and elite Disaster Recovery Teams that are strategically located throughout the United States.
Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today 208-375-0300
Storm Damage Preparedness
Our team of experts will be there soon, but your health and safety are our main priorities. While you wait for help to arrive, follow these tips to keep you protected while facilitating a more rapid recovery:
- Discuss preparedness with your family
- Identify an out-of-state contact in case you are separated. Long-distance calls may work when local calls do not
- Teach children how and when to call 911 post emergency contact numbers near phones in your home
- Teach children how to use a cell phone
- Determine two escape routes from each room in your home
- Pick three places to meet - One right outside your home in case of a sudden emergency, pick a location in your neighborhood if your property isn't safe and a regional meeting place if you can't return home
MAKE A PLAN
- Water will keep you alive. If you have enough water, you can live on half of your normal food intake. Make sure to store at least one gallon of water per person per day and store enough water to last two weeks.
- People in hot environments, children, people who are ill and nursing mothers should store more.
- Rotate your water supply every six months
- Other sources of water in your home: water heater, ice cubes, pipes and toilet tank (not the bowl)
Unlike water, food can be rationed. Store at least a three to five day supply of non-perishable food in a dry place where the temperature is not above 70 degrees.
Select foods that require little or no preparation, water or refrigeration. Select foods that are high in calories, nutritious, compact and lightweight. Choose foods your family will eat.
Pets are an important member of your family. Plan for them as well. Remember that emergency shelters typically do not allow animals. Only service animals are allowed in shelters.
But you should know safe places to keep your pets if you have to evacuate with them. Where are hotels and motels outside of your area that accept pets? What friends or family members could keep them for you? Which boarding facilities, veterinarians or shelters could be used?
Your water heater can be a critical source of water in an emergency, but only if it’s still standing. Go to your home improvement store of choice and buy the metal straps to secure the water heater to nearby studs.
A falling water heater can break gas lines and water lines or spill your water.
If you have natural gas coming into your home, it’s easy to turn off, but not so much for turning it back on. Only qualified people should turn gas back on.
When you should shut off your gas meter:
- You smell natural gas
- You hear gas leaking
- There is a fire (unless shutting off the gas would jeopardize your safety)
- If you need to shut off the gas, use a wrench to turn the valve a quarter turn in either direction
- Take some time to become familiar with which utilities enter your home and where they can be shut off. As you practice emergency plans, locate and map the gas, water and electricity mains. During family drills, go through the movements, but do not practice shutting off gas lines.
If you are facing the aftermath of a storm or natural disaster, call us at (208) 375-0300!
Protect Your Property From Winter Damage
"Winter storms are the third-largest cause of catastrophe losses, behind only hurricanes and tornadoes" -Insurance Information Institute, Inc.
It is a known fact that winter weather trends can be unpredictable throughout the United States. Homeowners in colder climates, including the Northeast, Midwest, and mountain areas should now be weather-proofing their properties, preparing for the potential cold-weather storms ahead.
Winter storms often bring with them an array of extreme cold, snow, high winds, and icy conditions, which can cause potential outages for days or even immobilize entire regions. Basic communication services, power and heat sources can be knocked out for days until usage is safe again. The National Weather Service refers to winter storms as "deceptive killers", as statistics highlight that most deaths around this period are indirectly related to the weather.
The past five years have highlighted how towns and cities around the country can be completely shut down by the challenges of winter weather. Snow and ice dams can be large threats to the exterior structures of properties, so it is crucial to take steps to ensure your property is structurally sound.
Prevent Your Pipes From Freezing
When the weather gets colder, unprotected water pipes can often freeze, leaving you without water (and in some cases without heating, too). Without steps to protect them during the winter months, water pipes can freeze and sometimes burst. Allowing heat to circulate around your home and having sufficient insulation can help ensure the pipes remain at a constant temperature.
If you do identify a frozen pipe, you can thaw it out slowly by using a hot water bottle or towels soaked in warm water. If you have a burst water pipe, turn off the water supply immediately, by turning the valve to stop the flow of water – this will prevent any further damage until you can get it fixed.
Monitor Ice Dams on Roofs
Ice dams are formed by layers of snow and ice building up in the eaves of your roof or guttering. This build-up of snow and ice then backs up and “dams” the natural flow of water off the roof. It is this damming that causes the water to run down the interior wall surfaces.
A constant increase in the amount of snow on a roof can lead to potential structure damage, as well as leaks or water damage in your home. Sturdiness and slope are all variables and can react differently in adverse winter weather conditions. You may seek professional help if you think your roof may need modifications.
After a storm and only when safe to do so, you can use a long-handed rake to remove snow from your roof. The amount of snow that your roof and gutters can take will depend on the type, age, and condition. Ensure that downspouts and gutters are clear in an effort to prevent flooding.
One of the best long-term methods for preventing ice dams is to install a water-repellent membrane in your roof. This is installed under the shingles and acts as an extra barrier, helping to prevent water from seeping into your property.
Winterize the Interior
Making updates to your home, including using silicone foam, caulking any holes, and adding insulation to walls can have a significant impact on your home’s energy bills. Make sure that your heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) system is regularly serviced too, as a failing system can result in wasted energy and wasted money.
Doors and window-sills are also major culprits when it comes to letting heat escape. Caulking and weather-stripping can help to reduce the likelihood of heat loss, as well as the possibility of water seeping into your home due to ice dams.
You may want to consider installing a generator for emergency outages to help when your main power sources are disturbed. This will allow you to connect lights, refrigerators, and electrical heating devices and stay warm and safe in your home.
Inspect the Exterior of Your Home and Clear any Leaves and Branches
Make sure you clear any leaves and branches from your drain pipes before the winter season arrives. Safely cut away any branches that are hanging over your house and repair any damage to your gutters and roof. These issues could pose a risk to structures, people, and vehicles. Trimming trees can be dangerous in icy weather though, so try and get this done before the cold winter period begins.
Clear Pathways and Property Entrances
After a storm, it’s vital that you remove snow and ice from walkways and parking lots if you are a business owner. Use rock salt or grit to avoid any slips or trips. Removing snow and treating icy surfaces with a safe snow melting product will allow customers safe access to your business.
By following these few basic precautions, you can ensure that the interior and exterior of your home or business is safe this winter. Remember that snow and unpredictable weather patterns can potentially threaten your property’s structure, so be sure to seek professional advice if there are signs of damage.
The Esporta Wash System is the disaster restoration industry’s only wet-wash machine designed exclusively to recover “soft contents” damaged in fire and water disasters. Soft contents include items such as footwear, linens, outerwear, leathers, bedding, outdoor items, athletic equipment, survival gear, sleeping bags, life jackets, stuffed toys, and almost all of your personal clothing.
The patented system breaks down unwanted organic materials and kills bacteria, viruses, and mold spores on contact. The system also removes organic and inorganic contaminants without degrading or damaging the materials. It is five times more effective than traditional front-loading washing machines.
If you have favorite items of clothing that have been affected by mold, ask our SERVPRO of Boise/Meridian remediation technicians about what type of options you have for salvaging them!
Treasure Valley Fire Prevention
Safeguarding against potential fire hazards will significantly reduce the likelihood of a fire affecting your home and family. Make fire prevention and safety a priority in your home.
- Install a smoke alarm on every level of your home and test it monthly.
- Prevent electrical fires by never overloading circuits or extension cords.
- Use appliances only as directed by the manufacturer. Unplug appliances when not in use.
- Keep portable heaters at least three feet away from anything combustible.
- Keep the fire in the fireplace. Use fire screens and have your chimney cleaned annually.
- Install an affordable home fire safety sprinkler system. In addition to keeping you safe, they can increase property value and lower insurance rates.
- Plan your escape. Practice your exit strategy from every room in the house.
- Take the time to educate your children about the dangers of fire.
Classification of Water Damage in Your Home
In this post, we will be explaining some of the basics of water damage and how it can affect your home and health. Water damage is the leading culprit when it comes to property damage and restoration service needs.
Now, this actually surprises a lot of folks, when they hear water damage they usually imagine a flood from a nearby river, a natural disaster, etc. While events as such do occur, there are more common ways for water damage to affect your home, including:
- appliance leaks from your fridge, ice machine, washing machines, etc.
- toilet overflows
- sinks and bath/shower overflows or left running without attendance
- broken/leaky water pipes within walls and ceilings
- drainage issues around the property
- roof leaks and compromised exterior
- rain/wind storms
As you can see, water damage can originate from either internal or external sources and once it gets into your home it is important to know what kind of water you are dealing with.
What do we mean by what kind of water? Well in the restoration industry we recognize water in THREE different categories:
- CATEGORY 1 – Also referred to as “Clean Water”, this means that the water originated from a sanitary source and does not generally pose a risk to our health.
- CATEGORY 2 – This could also be referred to as “Grey Water”, meaning it contains some contamination and would not be sanitary enough for human consumption, posing a health risk if ingested.
- CATEGORY 3 – Commonly known as “Black Water”, this is water that is grossly contaminated and could contain disease-causing organisms, pathogens, and other harmful materials.
Now you know the 3 different categories of water and how it can enter into your home. Each of these different categories of water damage comes with their own do's and don'ts on how to deal with them. Restoration professionals like SERVPRO of Boise have advanced training and expertise, not to mention a tremendous amount of hands-on experience to handle any water damage emergency
Commercial Fire Damage Restoration
When a fire strikes your commercial property, it's quite likely that you feel yourself start to panic. This immediate reaction makes sense given all of the economic turmoil and property destruction that a fire can cause. However, knowing which steps to take in the face of a Treasure Valley commercial fire can help prevent you from becoming anxious, losing money, and undergoing extensive property damages. To handle a treasure valley commercial fire successfully and speedily, implement the following four tips:
1. Contact A Fire Remediation Expert.
Once the fire department has doused all of the flames, be sure to call a fire remediation expert. This individual will be able to equip you with a thorough assessment indicating the extent of the damages. Don't ever attempt to handle any of the cleanups, drying, or restoration processes on your own. Doing so could put you in peril of injury and illness.
2. Assemble Your Records.
In addition to contacting a fire remediation expert, make sure that you assemble your business's essential records. You'll want to have this information with you when you start working with your insurance company. To guarantee that you can have all of your files ready in a safe place, make a point to buy a fireproof safe where they can be stored.
3. Call The Insurance Company Immediately.
Be sure that you call your insurance company once the fire is put out. This step is important because your insurance agent will work with you to file a claim and determine how much coverage you'll attain for the commercial damages.
4. Get Permission To Reenter The Building.
Always ask the fire department or another local authority whether you can reenter your building. In some cases, Treasure valley fires can weaken the structural integrity of the commercial property and make it subject to collapse. This is why you need to assure that reentry is safe for you and your employees.
Call SERVPRO For Fast, Friendly Fire Remediation Services
If your business caught on fire, don't worry. Instead, call the professionals at SERVPRO of Boise and let us start cleaning up immediately. Acting right now is the key to limiting damages and expediting the restoration process. Choosing our team of industry specialists is the secret to attaining the sophisticated services you deserve. All of our IICRC-certified technicians will work with diligence and determination to get your commercial property back in pristine condition, so call us now at (208) 375-0300 to attain your free estimate.
Locally Owned Company with National Resources
As a locally owned and operated business, SERVPRO of Boise is strategically located to respond quickly to your commercial fire emergency event. When commercial fire damage occurs we have the resources and personnel to help. Call us today! (208) 375-0300