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What To Do When You See Mold in Waltham, Mass.

9/7/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation What To Do When You See Mold in Waltham, Mass. Trust professionals to remediate mold in your home or workplace

Who loves hazy, hot, and humid weather in Waltham, Mass.? Mold and other microbes. Their spores are circulating constantly in the air looking for ideal conditions to grow and reproduce. 

Hot and muggy summer days are ideal for microorganisms looking for a home, and they will not hesitate to settle in your home if you do not control the humidity. By the time you see their colonies, you have a full-blown infestation. 

What should you do when you see mold in Waltham?

Find the Water Source

Mold growth may result from humidity in the air that could be controlled by an air conditioner or dehumidifier. A previously undetected leak from plumbing, an appliance, or a damaged roof may be to blame. Improperly vented bathrooms or clothes dryers may also be the culprits.

Wherever the moisture is coming from, you will not successfully solve a mold problem until you solve the moisture problem.

Consult a Professional for Mold Remediation

Improper treatment of microbial growth can have health effects on building occupants and may lead to repeat infestations. Ignoring an outbreak will only make the problem bigger. 

Some people see mold and think that setting up a fan to blow away the moisture is sufficient treatment. Unfortunately, this has the effect of circulating spores and mycotoxins in the air that may affect the health of people and pets.

Others might tell you an outbreak can be treated with bleach. This may be true if the microbial growth is confined to non-porous surfaces like bathroom tiles, but bleach cannot penetrate porous materials like drywall and carpets to draw out the microbes. Additionally, dead mold can trigger an allergic response in some building occupants, so even dead mold must still be removed. 

Only an experienced, certified mold remediation specialist is equipped  to evaluate the extent of your building’s infestation and recommend the proper steps to take to safely remediate the problem. 

SERVPRO Mold Remediation Technicians

Our mold remediation crews are certified by the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification to follow the latest industry standards for remediating microbial growth and ensuring the safety of building occupants. We offer free estimates and can work with your insurance company for covered losses. 

Call SERVPRO of Waltham/Weston/Watertown/Wayland for a free estimate at the first sign of mold. We will make it “Like it never even happened.”

Water Damage Tools of the Trade

6/8/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Water Damage Tools of the Trade Our water damage tools enable us to dry your building quickly and avoid further damage

Water out of place is a biohazard waiting to grow. When you have water in your building from a flood, a plumbing problem, or structural damage, you need to dry it quickly before mold starts growing.

SERVPRO of Waltham/Weston/Watertown/Wayland uses an array of equipment to deliver the best results based on current science. Here are the most important ones:

SERVPRO DryBook

Our crews are certified by an independent organization, the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC). SERVPRO has developed DryBook, a proprietary software that ensures we adhere to the IICRC S500 Standard and Reference Guide for Professional Water Damage Restoration.

Thermal Imaging Cameras

Sometimes we need to see what is behind a wall in order to determine the extent of your water damage. Thermal imaging cameras draw attention to differences in temperature that may indicate water where it does not belong.

Moisture Meters

When we detect an unexplained change in temperature under flooring or behind a wall, we use a moisture meter to determine whether water is the source of the temperature change. Moisture meters also allow us take daily readings and track the success of our drying efforts.

Truck-Mounted Extractor

If there is any standing water when we arrive on a job, we use a truck-mounted extraction machine to suck out the water. Sometimes we are unable to reach a water loss with our truck, in which case we will use a portable extractor.

Axial Air Movers

Circulating the air helps move the water out of materials and into the air where vapor can be extracted by a dehumidifier. Most of time, we use axial air movers, but we do have a few snail fans on hand as well.

AHAM-Rated Dehumidifiers

Dehumidifiers do the heavy lifting when it comes to pulling water out of the air and into a container for removal. We rely on the Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers (AHAM) to provide a trusted rating system for our equipment.

Air Filtration Devices

Most jobs also require we filter the air to remove any contaminants, microbial spores, or other particulates. We use air filtration devices with High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filters.

Many Tools, One Target

You can see we use many different tools, but they are all in service of one goal: drying your building quickly to avoid further damage.

Call us as soon as you notice a water damage. No matter the time of day or night, we are standing by to take your emergency call.

Air Filtration Devices Capture Particulates in the Air

6/7/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Air Filtration Devices Capture Particulates in the Air 1000 CFM HEPA-filtered Air Filtration Device (AFD)

You know how important it is to dry your building before mold starts growing. One of the tools we use to protect your building’s occupants from exposure to harmful microbes is the Air Filtration Device (AFD) or “air scrubber”.

HEPA-Filtered AFDs

All of our AFDs have High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filters. HEPA filters trap extremely small particles including microbial spores and pollen.

We use AFDs to pull contaminants out of the air during a water or sewer damage. We use them to filter out particulates following a fire or demolition. And we use them on mold remediation jobs to extract excess microbial spores.

Three Sizes of AFD

Our franchise uses three sizes of filtration devices depending on the size of the area and the amount of air we need to cycle during the job. All sizes are based on the Cubic Feet per Minute (CFM) the device will move through its filters. We have 500 CFM, 1000 CFM, and 2000 CFM devices.

Whatever the size of your job, we have the equipment you need to clean the air and get back to normal as soon as possible.

Call us at 781-647-9100 when you need professional restoration services. Our team is standing by with the tools and expertise necessary to make your disaster “Like it never even happened.”

AHAM-Rated Dehumidifiers Complete the Drying Process

6/6/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage AHAM-Rated Dehumidifiers Complete the Drying Process Low-grain refrigerant dehumidifier

Depending on the extent of your water damage, we will use a variety of machines to dry your building and discourage microbial growth.

Once we have extracted as much water as we can from flooded areas using an extractor, we use air movers to encourage evaporation and dehumidifiers to pull the water vapor from the air.

AHAM-Rated Dehumidifiers

Our franchise uses dehumidifiers that have been rated by the Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers (AHAM). This ensures that the output of all of our machines has been tested to the same standard.

Standards matter because the ratings are used to calculate the number of machines we will need, and for how many days they will be needed, in order to properly dry your building. SERVPRO’s proprietary DryBook software helps with making these calculations.

Dehumidifiers complete the drying process by pulling water vapor out of the air and converting it to water we can discard.

LGR or Desiccant

There are two types of dehumidifiers available. Refrigerant dehumidifiers move air over a cold coil to turn water vapor into liquid. We use Low-Grain Refrigerant (LGR) dehumidifiers for most water restoration jobs.

Desiccant dehumidifiers use a porous product to absorb water vapor. We use desiccant dehumidifiers in special circumstances, like when they need to operate at low temperatures.

Professional Drying Technicians

Every water damage is unique. When you call us, our trained and certified water damage restoration technicians will use their expertise and DryBook to determine the best equipment for the fastest drying.

Call us at the first sign of flooding to make it “Like it never even happened.”

Axial Air Movers Are Key to Drying Quickly

6/5/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Axial Air Movers Are Key to Drying Quickly Axial Air Movers Accelerate Evaporation

Axial Air Movers are truly the workhorses of water restoration. No, they usually do not dry a building all on their own, but they are instrumental in creating the air movement necessary to accelerate drying.

Our franchise professionals are certified by the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) in water restoration. We employ the principles of psychrometry (science of drying) to create the ideal conditions for drying water damages quickly and efficiently.

Axial Air Movers

Air movers are key to the drying process. At SERVPRO of Waltham/Weston/Watertown/Wayland, we rely on axial air movers like the ones in this photo.

Air movers—also known as fans—accelerate the drying process by helping to draw water out of building materials like drywall and carpet. The air movement across these surfaces increases evaporation allowing a dehumidifier to then pull the water vapor from the air and into a container.

Although these air movers are also correctly called fans, they are commercial grade and push air at much higher rates than the fans in most hardware stores. Our technicians use a proprietary software called DryBook that dictates how many air movers should be used in each area for optimal drying.

Water Restoration Professionals

Our trained and IICRC-certified technicians have the know-how and tools to dry your building properly and ensure you do not suffer secondary effects like mold growth. Call us at the first sign of a water intrusion so we can minimize the impact on your building and control the costs of your restoration.

Water Extraction Machines Shorten Drying Times

6/4/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Water Extraction Machines Shorten Drying Times Truck-mounted extractors work quickly and do not need to be emptied as often

When you have standing water or saturated carpet following a water damage, we need to remove as much of the water as we can before setting up fans and dehumidifiers. The more water we are able to extract, the faster your building will dry.

Truck-Mounted Extractors

At SERVPRO of  Waltham/Weston/Watertown/Wayland, we prefer to use a truck-mounted water extraction machine like the one in this photo. This is the same machine we use to clean carpets and extract the dirty water after cleaning. Truck-mounted extractors work very quickly and do not need to be emptied as often.

Portable Extraction Machines

If your loss is located too far from the truck or above the third  floor, we will use a portable water extraction machine instead. These machines are far more powerful than your standard workshop vacuum and will shorten the drying process.

Professional Equipment

Our franchise professionals are trained and certified Water Damage Technicians using professional drying equipment. You can count on us to dry your building using the latest science and technology to shorten the restoration time and minimize costs.

Call us as soon as you notice flooding so we can extract the water and begin drying as soon as possible.

Moisture Meters Measure Moisture Levels in Materials

6/1/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Moisture Meters Measure Moisture Levels in Materials Moisture meters detect water we cannot see

Finding all the water in your building following a flood or other water damage is key to getting everything dry as quickly as possible. If you do not find all the water, microbes will start growing in about 48 hours.

Moisture Meters

When you call us for a water damage, our production manager may use a moisture meter to test whether there is any water hiding underneath the floors or inside the walls. This is the same moisture meter we will use throughout the job to record the moisture readings and document our success.

In every water restoration job, our goal is to return the building to its preloss condition. In some buildings, this will require we take readings in unaffected rooms to determine the target for preloss condition.

A moisture meter must be touching the specific area where water exists in order to see this. Sometimes our production managers will use thermal imaging cameras to highlight areas of concern so they can focus the moisture meter where water is most likely to be.

Get It Dry

In the end, it is all about removing excess water and drying your building before mold and other microbes start growing. The sooner we can begin the job, the less time water has had to soak into materials and wick up walls, and the sooner the building will be dry.

Call us anytime you have an emergency water damage. Our trained and certified crews are here to help.

Thermal Imaging Cameras Show Us Where to Look for Water

5/31/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Thermal Imaging Cameras Show Us Where to Look for Water Thermal Imaging Cameras Draw Attention to Possible Water Intrusions

When you have a water damage, the water you see is only part of the problem. The water you do not see, behind walls or beneath floors, poses a risk as well. If you do not dry all the water, then you will likely have secondary damage from mold or other microbes.

Thermal Imaging Cameras

Our productions managers may use thermal imaging cameras to help determine where water may be hiding out of sight. These cameras draw attention to changes in temperature.

If we see a spot that registers much cooler than the area surrounding it without a good reason for the temperature difference, we know to check that spot with a moisture meter to see whether there is excess water in that spot.

You might wonder why we do not simply use the moisture meter on every surface. The moisture meter must touch the surface in the spot with the moisture to measure it. We could spend all day sticking the meter on every spot in the building, or we can use the thermal imaging camera to quickly scan and see the spots where water may be hiding.

Get It Right the First Time

After a water damage, you need a restoration crew that can dry your building completely the first time. At SERVPRO of Waltham/Weston/Watertown/Wayland, our production managers are equipped with the latest technology, including moisture meters, thermal imaging cameras, and DryBook.

Call us at the first sign of a water damage. We are available 24 hours a day to take your call and determine the best strategy for restoring your building.

SERVPRO DryBook Guides Our Water Restoration Crews

5/30/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage SERVPRO DryBook Guides Our Water Restoration Crews DryBook helps us adhere to the IICRC S500 Standard

When you have a flood or other water damage, you need solid advice from trusted restoration partners. At SERVPRO of Waltham/Weston/Watertown/Wayland, we rely on SERVPRO’s proprietary DryBook software to drive our decisions and strategies for drying your loss.

IICRC Standard

It is important to understand that we did not invent the water drying standard to which we hold ourselves accountable. A third party certification company, the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC), sets the standard with the S500 Standard and Reference Guide for Professional Water Damage Restoration.

The IICRC also approves the training our technicians receive and certifies when they have passed the required testing for their qualifications. Technicians complete IICRC continuing education credits as needed to maintain their certification and keep abreast of industry changes.

SERVPRO DryBook

SERVPRO DryBook is the software program that our crews use to facilitate application of the S500 Standard to every job. When we enter the specifics of a job, including square footage and extent of the water absorption, DryBook will tell us how many pieces of equipment we should set up.

You can be confident that when a production manager says you need fifteen fans, that number came from the actual science of drying and is not just an experiential guess.

DryBook also stores all our moisture readings and photos so that we have a permanent record of the particulars of your water restoration job.

Trust Certified Professionals

When you find water where it does not belong, you need trusted professionals to dry it quickly and efficiently. Our IICRC-certified water restoration technicians equipped with DryBook bring the latest in science and technology to your building.

Call SERVPRO of Waltham/Weston/Watertown/Wayland when you need the job done right the first time.

Fire Restoration Process

5/29/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Fire Restoration Process Cleaning soot is just one step in the fire restoration process

After a fire, you may not know where to turn. SERVPRO franchise professionals have years of experience coordinating fire recovery efforts with insurance companies. Our production managers can walk you through the steps in restoring your property and making it “Like it never even happened.”

Fire Restoration Process

Fires vary, and the steps in fire restoration will vary as well depending on the size of the fire and the extent of the damage. Trust a professional to guide you through the process and show you the steps that apply to your loss.

Board Up

Large fires usually leave a building unsecure. High heat may have blown out windows and firefighters may have had to hack through doors to get to the source of the fire.

In these cases, the first task when firefighters give the all clear is to board up windows and doors to secure the property.

Protect Scene

Fire investigators may need to gather evidence in the building to determine the cause of the fire. Property owners and restoration crews will not be allowed to access the building until the investigation is deemed complete.

Protect Occupants

Your first instinct may be to enter the building and see what you have left. A fire restoration professional will instruct you to observe safety precautions. Soot and other airborne debris are hazardous to inhale, so you may be advised to wear a mask. Walking on soot-covered carpets may set in stains or transfer soot from one room to another, so you will be advised to minimize movement inside the building.

If electrical components were compromised by fire or water, the power will have been turned off. If the building has a ventilation system, this too will be shut off and a responsible restoration crew will block the vents to prevent more soot entering the system. Additionally, the crew will need to bring a generator and possibly a portable furnace to provide power and heat to the building.

Even if everyone onsite is wearing a mask or respirator, a HEPA-filtered air filtration device will be installed to begin cleaning the air of soot and other particulates.

Dry Building & Contents

Many fire losses are also water losses because of the water used to extinguish the flames. Drying a building will require air movers and dehumidifiers to pull water out of materials and the air. 

Assess Contents

Assessing the contents is a big part of the fire restoration process. Our production managers have experienced many fires and are qualified to instruct property owners on what can be saved and what should be discarded. We work with insurance adjusters to point out all the building damage and contents involved.

Asbestos Testing

Massachusetts DEP law 310 CMR 7:15 (4) mandates testing for asbestos on all demolition jobs. Our production manager will bring in a testing company as soon as possible so we have the results before beginning demolition. If there is asbestos, we will have to partner with an asbestos removal company to be sure materials are disposed of properly.

Demolition and Disposal

Anything that cannot be salvaged will be removed for proper disposal. This may include porous materials like drywall and carpet that stayed wet too long and burned items.

Clean Every Surface

Soot goes everywhere. Probably the biggest surprise for property owners is seeing that soot can travel into cabinets and closets even on stories that did not have open flames.

The oily residue in soot must be cleaned with special commercial products designed for cleaning soot. If you attempt to clean with household products, you risk setting the stains into your fabrics, wallcoverings, and flooring.

Cleaning is the most time-consuming step in the fire restoration process. Crews must clean every inch of every wall, ceiling, and floor, including inside cabinets and closets. They will clean inside every fixture and piece of furniture and all surfaces of non-porous contents.

In some situations, it will make more sense to pack out contents from a soot-filled room, clean the contents in another area, and then return the contents to the cleaned room.

Deodorization

Getting rid of the smell of the fire may entail using a deodorization machine that emits a dry fog to bind with odor-causing molecules and neutralize them.

Consult Partners

Finally, special contents may require consultation with other companies. Art restorers, antique specialists, drycleaners, and electrical contractors may need to provide their expertise with certain items.

Trust Professional Advice

A fire can be devastating. In the aftermath you should turn to trained and certified professionals like the team at SERVPRO of Waltham/Weston/Watertown/Wayland. We will guide you through the fire restoration process and work with your insurance carrier to make it “Like it never even happened.”