Recent Posts

Signs That Your Hot Water Tank Could be Failing You!

7/9/2017 (Permalink)

General Signs That Your Hot Water Tank Could be Failing You! Hot water storage tank

Common signs are as follows:

  • Insufficient water
  • Noisy water heater
  • Cloudy or hot water that may have an odor
  • Metallic water taste
  • Rust or leaks around connections
  • Leaking tank

The average hot water heater lasts approximately 8-12 years, so consider having it checked at least once a year. However, if you are experiencing any of the above signs, have it serviced immediately! 

The Importance of Carpet Cleaning....

6/27/2017 (Permalink)

Carpets act as a filter for trapping particles like dirt, dust, dander and other contaminates.  Regular carpet cleaning can help reduce or eliminate pollutants.   While vacuuming is a key component for proper care and maintenance, it does not remove all trapped particulates.  To maximize your cleaning efforts and to reduce dirt, allergens, dust mites and other microscopic pollutants,  it is recommended by the Institute of Inspection on Cleaning & Restoration (IICRC) to professionally steam clean and sanitize your carpet on an annual basis.  To learn more visit us at www.SERVPROsouthburytorrington.com or call us at 203-267-6262.

Did You Know That There Are 3 Categories and Classes Which Describe Water Contamination?

5/22/2017 (Permalink)

General Did You Know That There Are 3 Categories and Classes Which Describe Water Contamination? Category 3 - Ground Water

With all the recent rain fall, did you know that there are different categories and classes which describe contaminated water?  According to the IICRC (Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification), which sets the standards for the cleaning industry and water damage restoration training, there are several different levels and classes around water destruction.  From the IICRC’s S-500 standards, they are as follows:

Category 1. This is water from a clean and sanitary source, such as broken water supply lines, tub or sink overflows or appliance malfunctions that involves water supply lines.  The cleanliness of Category 1 water can deteriorate quickly due to contact with building and other materials.

Category 2. This category, once referred to as grey water, contains level of contaminates that may cause illness or discomfort if ingested. Sources include toilet bowls with urine (no feces), sump pump failures, and water discharge from dishwashers or washing machines.

Category 3. This is the worst classification, once referred to as black water, is grossly contaminated and can contain pathogenic, toxigenic, or other harmful agents. If ingested it can cause severe illness or death. Sources include sewer backup, flooding from rivers or streams, toilet overflow with feces, and ground surface water or standing water that has begun to support bacterial growth.

Next are the classes of water damage which determine the probable rate of evaporation based on the type of materials affected, or wet, in the room or space that was flooded.

Class 1. Slow rate of evaporation and easiest to deal with.  Only part of a room or area was affected, there is little or no wet materials, and the moisture has only affected materials with a low permeance rate, such as plywood or concrete.

Class 2. With a fast evaporation rate, this level affects an entire room, carpeting, or cushioning, the wetness has wicked up the walls at least 12”, and there is moisture remaining in structural materials.

Class 3. This class has the fastest evaporation rate.  Ceilings, walls, insulation, carpet and sub-floors are all saturated.

Class 4. This class is labeled as specialty drying situations, which means there has been enough water and time to saturate materials with very low permeance, such as hardwood, concrete, stone, crawlspaces and plaster.

 

Should the unexpected happen and you are faced with a water loss, please call us at 203-267-6262.  We make it “Like it never even happened.®”

 

The Health Effects of Mold:

4/12/2017 (Permalink)

General The Health Effects of Mold: Mold found in attic.

The Health Effects of Mold:


Mold can produce allergens and irritants which can potentially cause health effects such as:



  • Allergy Symptoms

  • Asthma

  • Difficulty Breathing

  • Weakened Immune System & Chronic Sickness


Mold can spread quickly throughout your home in as little as 48 hours. If you suspect that your home or business has a mold, we can help by inspecting your property. If mold is found, we are are the experts to remediate your mold infestation.


To learn more about mold visit us at www.SERVPROsouthburytorrington.com or call 203-267-6262.

A Winter Tip For Your Ceiling Fans

2/13/2017 (Permalink)

During cold winter months, consider reversing your ceiling blade fans.  In normal mode, ceiling fans spin in a counter-clockwise direction. Their blades are positioned to push air down, resulting in a cool breeze. By switching your ceiling fan to reverse, the fan now spins in the opposite direction which pulls air up towards the ceiling, driving the warm air that has risen naturally back down and redistributing warm air to the edges of the room.

Did You Know That There Are Different Types Of Smoke?

12/28/2016 (Permalink)

General Did You Know That There Are Different Types Of Smoke? An example of soot webs (aka cobwebs).

Some of the different types of smoke are:

Fuel Oil Soot – Furnace puff backs

Wet Smoke – Plastics and rubbers low heat, smoldering, pungent odor, sticky, smeary.

Dry Smoke – Paper and wood fast burning, high temperatures, heat rises therefore the smoke rises.

Protein – Produced by evaporation of material rather than from a fire. Virtually invisible, discolors paints and varnishes, extreme pungent odor.

Other Types – Tear gas, fingerprint powder and fire extinguisher residue.

As we enter into the colder months and turn up our thermostats, one of the common types of smoke is fuel oil soot released from your furnace, called a “puff back.”  

A puff back is a different type of smoke, a sudden dispersion of black smoke and soot throughout the house.  Another identifier can be the appearance of cobwebs, but are actually “soot webs” which are much darker and has an oil odor present.  The oil base soot disperses throughout one’s home affecting walls, ceilings, carpets and furniture to name a few.  It is extremely difficult to remove and there may be a foul odor in the affected rooms.

The cause for a puff back may vary from age of boiler, lack of maintenance, failure to make needed repairs and/or a malfunction.  All heating systems, especially oil-fired, should be inspected, cleaned and adjusted at least once a year by a qualified professional.

Should the unexpected happen, clean-up should be handled by a professional cleaning company like SERVPRO of Southbury/Torrington, to make it "Like it never even happened."

Flooding Safety Tips

8/24/2016 (Permalink)

Floods are one of the most common and widespread natural disasters in the United States.  Regardless of where your home may be located, there is always potential for flood damage.

Floodsmart.gov reports, in the last 5 years, all 50 states have experienced floods or flash floods.  Just because you haven’t experienced a flood in the past, does not mean you won’t in the future.  In fact, nearly 20% of all flood insurance claims come from moderate-to-low risk areas.

On average, floods cost $3.5 billion in annual losses in the United State.

According to the American Red Cross, floods cause more damage in the U.S. every year than any other weather-related disaster.  American Red Cross offers the following flood safety tips:

Be Prepared:

  • Water – at least a 3 day supply, one gallon per person per day
  • Food – at least a 3 day supply of non-perishable food
  • Radio – either battery powered or hand crank
  • Extra batteries
  • Multi-purpose tools
  • First Aid Kit
  • Copies of personal document (Insurance policies, birth certificates and etc.)
  • Know what your homeowner’s insurance covers and/or doesn’t cover. 
  • Because standard homeowner’s insurance doesn’t cover flooding, it’s important to have protection from the floods associated with hurricanes, tropical storms, heavy rains and other conditions that impact the U.S. For more flood safety tips and information on flood insurance, please visit the National Flood Insurance Program Web site at FloodSmart.gov.
  • Camera – to photograph damages

Responding Appropriately During a Flood:

  • Be prepared to evacuate at a moment’s notice
  • Stay away from floodwaters which may contaminated
  • Keep children away from water. 

Flood Recovery Tips:

  • Return home only when officials declared the area as being safe.
  • Approach home carefully, look for loose power lines, cracked foundation, and other damages. 
  • Watch out for wild animals, especially poisonous snakes that may come into your home through flood water.
  • If you smell natural or propane gas or hear hissing, get out and call fire department
  • During cleanup, wear protective clothing, including rubber gloves and boots.

If a flood does strike your home or business, contact SERVPRO of Southbury/Torrington.  Even minor floods have the potential to cause major damage to a structure when not treated properly.  Cleanup can often be an overwhelming task.  SERVPRO of Southbury/Torrington is prepared to handle any size disaster, to make it like it never even happened!

Be Severe Weather Ready

8/8/2016 (Permalink)

Be Severe Weather Ready

Severe weather can happen anywhere and at anytime.  Each year, Americans can experience an average of the following intense storms:

·         10,000 severe thunderstorms

·         5,000  floods or flash floods

·         1,000 tornadoes

·         2 land falling deadly hurricanes

Approximately 98% of all presidentially declared disasters are weather-related, leading to around 500 deaths per year and nearly $15 billion in damage.  Knowing your risk of severe weather, taking action and being an example are just a few steps you can take to be better prepared to save your life and assist in saving the lives of others.

Know Your Risk.  The first step to being weather-ready is to understand the type of hazardous weather is to understand the type of hazardous weather that can affect where you live and work, and how the weather could impact you, your business and your family.  Check the weather forecast regularly and obtain a NOAA Weather Radio.  Severe weather comes in many forms and your shelter plan should include all types of local hazards.

Take Action. Take the next step in severe weather preparedness by creating a communication plan for your home and business.  Put together or purchase an emergency kit.  Keep important papers and valuables in a safe place.

Be an Example.  Once you have taken action to prepare for severe weather, share your story with co-workers and family and friends on Facebook or Twitter.  Your preparedness may inspire others to do the same.

Grilling Safety Tips:

7/14/2016 (Permalink)

General Grilling Safety Tips: Hamburgers - photo by Carlos Lopez https://www.flickr.com/people/7632976@N02

Grilling Tips:

There is nothing like firing up the grill during the summer months!  Did you know July is the peak month for grill fires?  A backyard barbecue can become dangerous if safety precautions aren’t considered. 

·         Propane and charcoal BBQ grills should only be used outdoors

·         The grill should be placed away from the home, deck railing and out from under leaves and overhanging branches

·         Keep children and pets away from grill

·         Keep your grill clean by removing grease buildup form the grills and in trays below the grill

·         Never leave grill unattended

·         When using a charcoal grill, let the coals completely cool before disposing in a metal container

We at SERVPRO of Southbury/Torrington wish you a Happy and Safe Grilling Season!

4th of July Safety Tips:

6/27/2016 (Permalink)

4th of July Safety Tips:

Summer is in full swing with barbecues, parades and firework displays; but along with all the festivities are visits to emergency rooms, especially during the month of July.

Each year, an average of 23 people are injured due to fireworks-related incidents, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.  Also, fireworks are responsible for thousands of house fires each year with millions of dollars in property damages.

Consider the following tips to ensure your 4th of July celebrations are disaster-free!

·         Light fireworks outdoors on a driveway or other paved surface(s) at least 50 feet away

·        Avoid lighting fireworks near home and away from flammable materials (dry grass or mulch)

·         Anyone using fireworks or standing nearby should wear protective eyewear

·         Do not try to re-light or handle malfunctioning fireworks

·         Keep a bucket of water nearby to fully extinguish fireworks that don’t go off or in case of fire

·         Never pick up left over fireworks as they may still be active

·         The safest way to enjoy fireworks is to attend a public display conducted by trained professionals

SERVPRO of Southbury/Torrington wishes you a Happy 4th of July and a Safe Summer!