Archived Blog Posts
Real confidence is built through hard work and excellent habits
Real confidence is built through hard work and excellent habits.
Dome's Shut-Off Valve
DIY Device to help minimize Water Damages
Last year, my HVAC system developed a leak in its drain pan. After spending many hours cleaning up the thoroughly soaked carpet in both a walk-in closet and an adjoining bedroom, I spent many additional hours attempting to fix the leaky drain pain. It turns out I’m not much of an HVAC repair technician, because two weeks later, the pan leaked again. This time, however, I was alerted to the impending soggy carpets (and another day of using the carpet steam cleaner) by the incessant (but, ultimately, pleasant) beeping of the Fibaro Flood Sensor I’d installed after the initial deluge. If the water leak had been from my water heater in the laundry room or kitchen sink, for example, there would likely have been much more water damage done by the time I woke up in the middle of the night and heard the beeping. That’s the beauty of having a water main shut-off valve installed and connected, at the very least, to a water sensor—or a more involved home automation system. The problem is, however, I’m definitely not a reliable plumber (although I have been known to sport a plumber’s butt now and then)—and nearly all of the automated water main shut-off valves available today require the knowledge, tools, and talents of a good professional plumber to install. With the exception of Dome’s Z-Wave-enabled Water Main Shut-Off Valve, that is.
The concept behind Dome’s Shut-Off Valve is about as simple as it gets: it’s a motorized “arm” that is attached to the manual shut-off valve you already have. When a connected water leak sensor (from Dome or in conjunction with another company’s smart home system) detects water where it’s not supposed to be, the Shut-Off Valve automatically turns the handle on the existing valve, immediately shutting off the source of water to the leak.
Here are the basic features that make the Dome Shut-Off Valve such an affordable, must-have device to install in your home. First of all, there are no tools nor plumber required, and it installs on any existing 1/4-turn ball valve in a matter of minutes on pipe sizes between 1/2-inch and 1.5-inches thanks to “self-aligning technology”. It includes a built-in temperature sensor that automatically shuts off the water when the ambient temperature falls too low. Because Dome knows neither you nor I would do it, the valve does a weekly self-test of opening and closing to make ensure the valve and mechanism remains in good working condition—and is ready to operate when it needs to. (There’s even an optional backup battery available.) Finally, the Dome Shut-Off Valve has a wide variety of built-in connectivity options, including Wi-Fi, Ethernet, Serial, and Z-Wave. As a result, Dome says it’ll work with nearly any smart home system on the market.
Dome’s Shut-Off Valve is available now for $129.99.
Indoor Mold Awareness
What are molds?
Molds are a common name for fungi. Molds are microscopic organisms that produce enzymes to digest organic matter and mold spores to reproduce. These organisms are part of the fungi kingdom, a realm shared with mushrooms, yeast, and mildews. In nature, molds play a key role in the decomposition of leaves, wood, and other plant debris. Molds need moisture to grow.
Should I use bleach to clean mold?
OSHA does not recommend using bleach in mold remediation. Ammonia dissolves some molds and neutralizes the mycotoxins. It is important to follow safety guidelines when using cleaners to remove molds. Consult the EPA website for proper personal safety equipment when removing mold. If mold growth is over 10 square feet, the recommendation is to contact a professional who is experienced in cleaning up mold; SERVPRO of Olympia (360)754-9689
According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA):
- There is no practical way to eliminate all molds and mold spores in the indoor environment; the way to control indoor mold growth is to control moisture.
- Molds can be found almost anywhere; they can grow on virtually any substance, providing moisture is present. There are molds that can grow on wood, paper, carpet, and foods.
- Clean and dry any damp or wet building materials and furnishings within 24-48 hours to prevent mold growth.
According to an EPA study, an estimated 50% of our nation’s schools have problems linked to poor indoor air quality.
If you or someone you know has a concern about the possibility of mold being present inside the home, call a certified mold professional to have the home inspected. SERVPRO of Olympia will be glad to help you with you suspected microbial growth concerns.
Material gathered by Karen Fitzgerald
SERVPRO of Olympia Inspects to Prevent and Restores to Fix Water Damage in Your Home
When You Least Expect It The Dishwasher Can Be The Cause Of A Water Damage
When you find that your residential property has incurred water damage, addressing the issue immediately is important. However, many homeowners find that they lack the knowledge and experience necessary to recognize, prevent, and effectively respond to the situation. SERVPRO of Olympia offers some helpful information and instructions found in this quick reference guide:
Sources and Areas of Water Damage Incidents
There are several common sources of water damage. One of them is the basement. Front, side, and back yards that were not graded correctly, or have suffered soil erosion, allow pooling water to gravitate and settle into building materials. This water accumulation can be from lawn irrigation water, rainwater runoff, or ice dams. Plumbing problems such as leaking or bursting pipes, from mechanical failure or frozen water expansion, can also result in water damage--drip by drip or gushers. Have SERVPRO of Olympia inspect your property for preventative measures against water intrusion. The installation of new pipes, ground drainage, and proper grading of your lawn can help prevent water damage and the need for repairs.
Other Causes of Water Damage
Other causes of water damage may include high humidity and leaky roofs. Water that accumulates in your home because of these causes can result in warped window frames, ceilings, furniture, floors, and walls. In many cases, the water can damage your personal possessions and renders some of them non-salvageable. The water can also create the ideal breeding ground for mold. SERVPRO of Olympia can extract unwanted water and humidity and also offer mold remediation services
Another source of water damage that you should be aware of includes broken hoses causing leaking appliances. These issues can lead to harmful water damage from leaking or overflowing toilets, ice makers, dishwashers, and washing machines. If a small leak goes unnoticed for an extended period, the gray water can degrade into black water, rated as Category 3 quality. This can be sewage water, chemically dangerous elements dissolved or suspended in the water, or microorganisms like E. Coli. The results can be hazardous living conditions, mold proliferation, expensive damage to personal possessions and clean up, and the erosion of your property's foundation.
The Ideal Water Damage Solution
When you realize that your residential property has suffered water damage, retaining the professional assistance of a water damage restoration franchise like SERVPRO of Olympia can mitigate costs and restoration time. Our friendly professionals possess the extensive industry experience, training, knowledge, and equipment to return your home to its preloss condition.
Locally Owned and Operated
We are proud to be an active member of Olympia, Lacey and Tumwater. SERVPRO of Olympia is locally owned and operated ready to help with any-sized flood and water damage emergencies. Call. (360) 754-9689 and let us inspection your water loss before you turn it into an insurance claim.
Dry Ice Blasting Commercial Application
Dry Ice Blasting with Cold Jet Machine
Completed by SERVPRO of Olympia
Dirt, soot, grease and oil build up in production facilities causes machinery to function improperly and can create an unsafe working environment. Effective cleaning extends the life of electric motors, reducing or eliminating costly repair, replacement or rental programs. However, manual cleaning is often delayed to prevent the shut-down of production lines.
Cold Jet dry ice blasting equipment provides a quick, safe, non-toxic and economical cleaning solution for facilities, industrial equipment, machinery, machine tools and assembly line equipment. Any item that is part of a production process can be cleaned on-line and without requiring cool-down with Cold Jet.
Cold Jet dry ice blasting cleans in-place without disassembly or cool down and is non-abrasive, non-conductive, non-corrosive and does not use water. Cold Jet’s systems can clean on and around hydraulic power units and electrical power and distribution components. Additionally, adhesives and oil and grease build-up are easily removed by dry ice blasting.
The cleaning applications for dry ice blasting are endless. Any item that is part of a production process can be cleaned on-line and without requiring cool-down. Cold Jet blast cleaning systems can clean on and around hydraulic power units and electrical power and distribution components. Additionally, adhesives and oil and grease build-up are easily removed by dry ice blasting. Cold Jet blasting systems are designed to increase production uptime and increase the productivity of any production process.
Dry ice blasting also minimizes the disposal of hazardous wastes. With Cold Jet dry ice blasting, the cleaning media (dry ice) sublimates - meaning it disappears without adding secondary waste. The only waste is the material you were removing.
Cleaning with Cold Jet Dry Ice Blasting in Industrial Facilities Provides:
- An environmentally responsible clean
- Decontaminated and sanitized production surfaces
- A cleans in-place method with no cool down required
- Reduced cleaning downtime
- No secondary waste
- Elimination of wear and tear
- A non-abrasive process
- Effective removal of bacteria (mold, listeria, salmonella, e. coli)
- Enhanced Total Productive Maintenance (TPM) & Six Sigma programs
A Few Proven Facility & Plant Maintenance Applications for Cold Jet Dry Ice Blasting Include:
- General & Production Equipment Robotics
- Ceilings & Walls Sanding Belts
- Equipment Degreasing
- Surface Cleaning Before Painting
- Electric Motors / Electrical Boxes
- Control Panels
- Pipes, Hoses & Fittings
- Cooling Fans
- Hydraulic Parts
KAREN'S INSPIRATIONAL CORNER
Where does your power lay?
When you can't control what's happening, challenge yourself to control the way you respond to what is happening. That's where your power is.
These words of Inspiration can be applied to when a situation that is out of your control eg. Water Damage, Fire Damage, Mold that has invaded your home. SERVPRO of Olympia, is just a call away. You have the power to make that call so SERVPRO of Olympia can put your mind at ease. There are technicians available that have been trained in the disaster situations, whether it be big or small help is just a phone call away. We will assist you by telling you what can be done before help arrives. This can help to reduce the size of damage that can occur.
ITS' THE WATER YOU DON'T SEE
Tools of the trade and our knowledge will help you with your Water Damage needs.
With any leak, its the water you don't see that can cause the most damage. When you experience a water damage, make the right choice. A mop and common household cleaning products may not be enough for the unseen water intrusions. While the surface may seem dry, the water you do not see can contain bacteria, or cause mold, rot and other unseen damage.
DID YOU KNOW...The insurance industry estimates that approximately 90 percent of household damages stem from water-related occurrences. The most commonly reported cause is leaky or broken pipes and plumbing fixtures.
AVOID WATER DAMAGE FROM APPLIANCES
Home appliances are considered a leading cause of preventable water damage. By implementing a simple inspection and maintenance program, homeowners can reduce their risk significantly:
- Dishwasher - Periodically check around the base of the dishwasher, as well as the water supply line under the sink.
- Refrigerator - For refrigerators with ice makers, periodically check the hose connection attached to the water supply.
- Washing Machine - Hoses should be inspected regularly for wetness around hose ends, as well as for signs of bulging, cracking or fraying. Hoses should be replaced every three to five years.
- Water Heater - While the service life of the standard water heater is 10 to 15 years, water heaters should be inspected routinely for signs of leaks or tank rust. Water heaters should be located next to a floor drain or placed inside a drain pan piped to the floor drain.
So before risking the value of your home or further damage by attemping to clean and dry it yourself, or if you want to be sure that a past event is not creating problems today,
CALL SERVPRO of Olympia (360)754-9689. We have the tools and the knowledge to help you with your Water Damage needs.
Carpet Cleaning At Its Best
Truck Mounted Steam/Extraction Method
The SERVPRO carpet and upholstery cleaning service will not only get out the dirt you see, but will also remove the unwanted dust you don’t. A professionally cleaned carpet and furniture may make all the difference in brightening up a room and freshening up your home.
Carpet cleaning, for appearance, and the removal of stains, dirt, and allergens is done through several methods. Clean carpets are recognized by manufacturers as being more visually pleasing, potentially longer-lasting, and probably healthier than poorly maintained carpets.Although there is an actual steam cleaning industrial process, in the context of carpet cleaning, "steam cleaning" is, in fact, hot water extraction cleaning. The hot water extraction cleaning method uses equipment that sprays heated water, sometimes with added cleaning agents, on the carpet. Simultaneously, the water is vacuumed up, along with any dislodged and dissolved dirt. Many carpet manufacturers recommend professional hot water extraction as the most effective carpet cleaning method. SERVPRO of Olympia offers this method along with methods for those who are chemical sensitive. CALL TODAY for SERVPRO of Olympia to give you a FREE ESTIMATE. (360)754-9689
Smoke and Soot Facts
Allow SERVPRO of Olympia to inspect and accurately assess the extent of the damage to develop a comprehensive plan of action.
Smoke and soot is very invasive and can penetrate various cavities within your home, causing hidden damage and odor. Our smoke damage expertise and experience allows us to inspect and accurately assess the extent of the damage to develop a comprehensive plan of action.
Smoke and soot facts:
- Hot smoke migrates to cooler areas and upper levels of a structure.
- Smoke flows around plumbing systems, seeping through the holes used by pipes to go from floor to floor.
- The type of smoke may greatly affect the restoration process.
- Limit movement to prevent further damage
- Place clean towels or old linens on carpeted traffic areas to prevent more siling.
- If electricity is off, empty freezer and refrigerator and prop doors open
- Clean and protect chrome on kitchen and bathroom faucets and appliances with light coating of WD-40 or petroleum jelly
- Don't attempt to wash any walls or painted surfaces.
- Don't attempt to clean carpet or upholstered furniture
Different Types of Smoke
There are two different types of smoke–wet and dry. As a result, there are different types of soot residue after a fire. Before restoration begins, SERVPRO of Olympia will test the soot to determine which type of smoke damage occurred. The cleaning procedures will then be based on the information identified during pretesting. Here is some additional information:
Wet Smoke – Plastic and Rubber
- Low heat, smoldering, pungent odor, sticky, smeary. Smoke webs are more difficult to clean.
Dry Smoke – Paper and Wood
- Fast burning, high temperatures, heat rises therefore smoke rises.
Protein Fire Residue – Produced by evaporation of material rather than from a fire
- Virtually invisible, discolors paints and varnishes, extreme pungent odor.
Our Fire Damage Restoration Services
Since each smoke and fire damage situation is a little different, each one requires a unique solution tailored for the specific conditions. We have the equipment, expertise, and experience to restore your fire and smoke damage. We will also treat your family with empathy and respect and your property with care.
Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call Us Today – (360) 754-9689
Find the moisture you will find the mold
Visible signs of suspected microbial growth.
Microscopic mold spores naturally occur almost everywhere, both outdoors and indoors. This makes it impossible to remove all mold from a home or business. Therefore, mold remediation reduces the mold spore count back to its natural or baseline level. Some restoration businesses advertise “mold removal” and even guarantee to remove all mold, which is a fallacy. Consider the following mold facts:
- Mold is present almost everywhere, indoors and outdoors.
- Mold spores are microscopic and float along in the air and may enter your home through windows, doors, or AC/heating systems or even hitch a ride indoors on your clothing or a pet.
- Mold spores thrive on moisture. Mold spores can quickly grow into colonies when exposed to water. These colonies may produce allergens and irritants.
- Before mold remediation can begin, any sources of water or moisture must be addressed. Otherwise, the mold may return.
- Mold often produces a strong, musty odor and can lead you to possible mold problem areas.
- Even higher-than-normal indoor humidity can support mold growth. Keep indoor humidity below 45 percent.
If your home or business has a mold problem, we can inspect and assess your property and use our specialized training, equipment, and expertise to remediate your mold infestation.
If You See Signs of Mold, CALL SERVPRO of Olympia Today – (360) 754-9689
Emergency Tips Before Help Arrives
Keep out of areas where ceilings are sagging from retained water
Here are some Emergency Tips to perform before SERVPRO of Olympia arrives on the scene. When in doubt before you turn the claim into the insurance company, have SERVPRO of Olympia come and evaluate the loss. SERVPRO has the tools to determine where the water has migrated to and the knowledge to show you the extend of the damage.
WATER DAMAGE- Emergency Tips
- Shut off the water source , if possible.
- Remove excess water by mopping or extracting with a Wet Vacuum Unit
- Remove and prop up wet upholstery cushions for even drying.
- Place aluminum foil or wood blocks under the furniture legs.
- Remove Oriental or other colored rugs from the wet area.
- Don't turn on ceiling fixtures if the ceiling is wet.
- Keep out of areas where ceilings are sagging from retained water.
- Move any books, magazines, papers, boxes out of the wet area