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Preventing Your Pipes From Freezing

11/21/2022 (Permalink)

Isolation ducts and pressure gauges flow and return pipes in the boiler room of a private house Insulate any exposed pipes that are vulnerable to freezing

Keep Your Pipes From Freezing

If you live in a colder climate, the danger of frozen pipes is real. If your home's water supply freezes, it can cause serious damage to home appliances and fixtures. The good news is that there are steps you can take before and after the coldest days of winter strike to prevent frozen pipes from occurring in your home.

When Temperatures Drop Below Freezing, Beware of Freezing Pipes.

When temperatures drop below freezing, it is time to worry about water pipes in your home freezing. Frozen pipes can burst and cause flooding, they can cause damage to your Hamilton, OH home's foundation or structure, and they can also cause water to leak into your home. If the water is not contained within a frozen pipe, it will start seeping through cracks in the wall or flooring. This can lead to mold and mildew growth.

There are several ways that you can prevent freezing pipes:

  • Insulate your water supply lines with foam insulation tape if possible
  • If you cannot access these lines directly then use an insulation blanket around them instead 
  • Be sure any windows that do not have storm shutters on them are covered properly with clear plastic sheets so cold air does not enter through them
  • Keep all vents closed off from areas that could be exposed due to drafts causing cold air currents

How to Avoid Pipe Freezing

Use heat tape. If you have an electric water heater, consider running a small space heater near it. You can also use heat tape to insulate valves and pipes in your basement or crawlspace, but keep in mind that it's a fire hazard if used improperly.

Use insulation. Insulate any exposed pipes that are vulnerable to freezing by wrapping them with foam or cloth pipe sleeves or other types of insulation. Before wrapping them up though make sure there are no leaks first!

Check for leaks and turn off the water supply when you leave your house, so you don't come back to frozen pipes.

How To Thaw Frozen Pipes

There are several ways to thaw frozen pipes. The best way to thaw them is by using hot water, but not just any old hot water -- you need to ensure that the temperature is high enough so that it will be able to melt the ice without damaging your pipes.

If you want to use hot water, here are some options:

Use a hair dryer set on "high" and directed at the pipe. This will take longer than other methods but won't damage your plumbing.

If there's an outlet nearby where you can plug in a space heater or blow dryer, turn those appliances on low and point them at the affected area for ten minutes or so until everything melts away. You can also try putting towels soaked in very hot water against frozen pipes; they'll help transfer heat into them faster than if they were left alone in the cold air around them!

Alternatives to Permanent Pipe Freezing Protection

While protecting your pipes from freezing is important, there are other options that can help you save money on heating costs.

Insulate the spaces around your pipes. If you have an attic or basement, it's a good idea to insulate any areas where cold air or water might be able to get inside and freeze the pipes. You can also insulate crawl spaces or basements if they're exposed to outside temperatures all year round. This will help keep the temperature inside these areas warmer than outside, preventing freezing in those places as well.

Replace outdoor faucets with frost-proof models or reroute pipe runs so that they don't run through unheated areas such as garages or porches during winter months of low humidity (this is what I did for my outdoor spigot).

Place space heaters near pipes that may be prone to freezing during cold weather periods when regular heating systems aren't working properly.

The best way to prevent pipe freezing is to keep your home warm by using space heaters or blankets. If you cannot afford these options, then you can use a blow dryer on low and place it near the pipe that has frozen. Another option would be to wrap the frozen pipe in towels soaked in hot water as soon as possible; this should thaw out any pipes that have been damaged due to cold temperatures outside your home.

Basic First Aid for Burns

10/10/2022 (Permalink)

First Aid Training - Burn injury. First aid course. Burns can be painful and dangerous.

Steps to Minimize the Impact on Minor Burns

Burns are painful, but they can be prevented and treated if you know what to do. If you or a friend or family member has experienced a major burn, the first thing to do is to call 911. However, for more minor burns, there are a few easy steps to help minimize the impact of the burn.

Remove all jewelry and clothing from the burn area.

While it's important to keep the burn area clean, you should also remove all jewelry and clothing from it. This will allow for easier cleaning and evaluation of the area. If the burn is on your face, remove any glasses or contact lenses that might be affected by water. If you have an injury on your hands or feet, take off any rings or watches.

Flush the burned area under running water for at least 20 minutes.

The best way to clean a burn is to flush it with water. The water should be as hot as possible without causing further damage. Do not apply ice or cold water, as this will only worsen the injury by causing pain and swelling. If you can do so, run the tap at full force for 20 minutes or longer if necessary.

If the burn blisters, leave it alone.

One of the worst things you can do is pop a burn blister. The fluid inside the blister is filled with white blood cells and they help your skin heal faster. If you pop it, those white blood cells leak out, making your skin take longer to heal and making it more likely that scarring will occur.

If the burn area has blisters, don't rub them or apply any ointments or creams. This can increase swelling around the burns and make them more painful. You should also avoid using ice or cold water on burns because it could damage tissue underneath the burned area by chilling it too quickly (this will make healing take longer). Finally, if there are blisters present on your burn: don't try covering them with a bandage because this increases friction between the bandage and injured body parts.

If any signs of infection develop, seek medical attention immediately.

If any signs of infection develop, seek medical attention immediately. Signs of infection include redness, swelling, pain or tenderness at the burn site and pus-like drainage. Infection can lead to sepsis (blood poisoning) if left untreated and should be treated by a doctor as soon as possible.

Burns result in a lot of pain and can easily become worse, so it's important to know what to do in case of an accident.

Burns can be painful and dangerous, so it's important to know what to do in case of an accident.

A burn is caused by the contact with heat or fire and results in a lot of pain. It can also become worse over time because burns can easily become infected, lead to scarring, or cause shock.

Burns are one of the most common injuries, and they can be very serious if left untreated. If you ever have a burn, make sure to follow these guidelines to minimize the damage and improve your chances of full recovery.

5 Tips to Prevent Spring Flooding at Your Business

8/30/2022 (Permalink)

Dirty gutter Gutters can collect a large amount of debris.

Prevent Spring Flooding at Your Business

After a long winter, it is finally time to start planning for the warmer months ahead. If you own a business in Ross, OH, spring can be a busy season for profits, but it also is a busy season for flooding. Fortunately, there are things you can do to prevent problems during the next thaw. Follow these steps to reduce the chances of needing to hire a water damage restoration professional once the weather warms up.

1. Relocate Snow
Never underestimate the water capacity in a pile of snow. For this reason, you will want to clear any away from the building's foundation. Ideally, snow should be at least three to five feet away, but the further away it is, the better.

2. Clean Out Gutters
After dealing with the snow, you will need to lookup. Over a long winter, gutters can collect a large amount of debris. Leaves, sticks, and dirt can lead to blockages which can force water to seep into the building.

3. Make Repairs
Next, look around the property. Few things lead to flooding like a frozen pipe. Check plumbing carefully. Seal leaks and insulate exposed pipes. While making repairs, do not forget the foundation. If you see cracks, do not ignore them.

4. Optimize Landscape Drainage
How does water drain around the building? If necessary, regrade the surrounding land to allow for better drainage. You may need to move plants and soil to do this, but it can be worth it.

5. Consider a Professional Inspection
If you are still feeling unsure about how your building will hold up to this spring's thaw, scheduling an expert inspection can give you a peace of mind. Sometimes, it is just better to know.
When the weather finally warms up, your business should experience spring profits, not a spring flood. By following these steps, you can reduce the chances of encountering common flooding problems.

How To Conduct an Emergency Drill in a Commercial Building

8/27/2022 (Permalink)

People escaping through an exit door People evacuating a building in Trenton, OH.

Steps To Run a Drill

A fire drill does not only prepare you and your employees for potential blazes in your commercial property. It can also help everyone learn how to evacuate the premises during major storms that damage the building.
Drills alert you to potential issues so you can correct them before an actual emergency occurs. Ideally, you should hold storm drills for your Trenton, OH, building at least twice annually. Here are some tips for making the most out of these drills.

1. Make an Evacuation Plan
Before you hold your next drill, ensure everyone in the office knows and understands the evacuation strategy. Map routes to the nearest exits and highlights the locations of the alarms. You should also create a communication system that keeps each employee informed about the status of the storm.

2. Set Goals
Judge your fire drill based on how long it takes everyone to evacuate the building and shut down the equipment. Set a realistic time frame for the completion of the drill and try to meet or beat that goal.

3. Rehearse
Start by doing a walkthrough of the drill with members of the emergency response team. Then hold the drill with as many of your employees as possible.
Once everyone has mastered the basic evacuation strategy, try adding some obstacles such as broken elevators and blocked stairwells. To make the drill even more realistic, have a designated employee practice calling 911 and/or cleanup and restoration professionals.

4. Observe
Have a few members of your team observe the drill in its entirety. They should specifically look for behaviors or problems that could be dangerous during a real storm. These individuals can then hold a debriefing after the drill to discuss anything that went wrong.
The above steps should help you run an efficient and effective fire drill. This way, if a severe storm forces you and your employees to evacuate, everyone will understand what to do.

What Type of Mold Is Growing in Your House?

8/22/2022 (Permalink)

Man wearing protective gear while looking at ceiling with mold If you suspect mold growth in your home, consider talking with SERVPRO.

In Your Home, What Kind Of Mold Is Growing?

There are many different types of mold that can grow in your house in Hanover Township, OH Mold growth is much more common than you may think, especially in areas of high humidity where water damage may have occurred. In all cases, the mold should be remediated. Here are some common types of mold typically found in the household.

1. Cladosporium

Usually green in color, Cladosporium can be found hiding under upholstery or floorboards. This mold can grow inside or outside in hot or cold climates and tends to grow on wood and fabric.

2. Aspergillus

Aspergillus is a very common mold and can be found anywhere where there are high levels of dampness. It can grow into thick layers quickly if not dealt with in time. Aspergillus can appear in a variety of colors as there are many species of this type of mold growth.

3. Penicillium

Penicillium will appear blue or green in color and is often found in areas of high water damage, typically in areas such as carpet and wallpaper. This fungus usually will have a fuzzy appearance to it.

4. Alternaria

Alternaria is a fast-growing mold that is extremely common. It usually appears as dark brown or black in color and fuzzy in texture. Under sinks, in window frames, or in showers are some of the frequent areas this mold is found.

5. Stachybotrys

Stachybotrys, frequently referred to as “black mold,” is typically black, slimy, and smelly. Black mold usually grows on wood, paper, or cardboard in areas that have experienced prolonged periods of water damage.

Mold can be difficult to locate and even harder to remove. If you suspect mold growth may be an issue in your home, consider talking to a professional to locate and remove the problem. Professional removers have specific training and equipment for the remediation of mold to ensure that it is taken care of for good. Always stay on top of it—mold grows fast and can spread to places you may not think of.

What To Do If You Smell Mold But Don't See It

7/31/2022 (Permalink)

Green mold growth on a wall Commercial mold growth

Mold growth is a common problem, so it is no surprise to find the fungus growing in commercial buildings in Oxford, OH. Unfortunately, in some cases, you may have an infestation long before it becomes noticeable. When this happens, the first sign will likely be a mold smell. If your building begins to smell musty, there might already be a significant amount of growth.

Why You Might Smell Mold But Not See It

When you have a mold smell in the building but don’t see anything out of the ordinary, the most likely reason is that the mold is growing in a hidden area. This can include the following:

  • Inside walls
  • Beneath flooring or carpeting
  • Inside drains and other plumbing fixtures
  • Inside upholstered furniture or other fabric items


Although mold will sometimes appear as discoloration on surfaces, if it grows in areas such as these, you may only become aware of the growth because of the fungus smell. For this reason, you should not ignore any unpleasant odors that you notice in your commercial building.


How You Should Handle It
If you notice a mold or mildew smell, particularly if there are no visible signs of growth, one of the first steps you should take is to hire a mold remediation company to perform an inspection. Because these professionals have the necessary experience and equipment, they will be able to locate any growth much more quickly and easily than if you were to take on the task yourself. If mold is found, they can then perform removal and cleanup to remove the odor from the building. Once the growth has been removed, you will need to take certain precautions, such as cleaning regularly and reducing moisture, to prevent the mold from returning.
Even if you cannot see any problems, a mold smell in your building will more than likely indicate some kind of fungal growth. It is best not to ignore any musty odors, as mold can spread quickly when not removed right away. Maintaining your building once the mold is removed will help prevent future infestations.

5 Ways To Lower Your Company's Water Consumption

7/20/2022 (Permalink)

Touch free faucets Install touch-free faucets
Of all the water issues worth discussing, one of the most relevant is conservation. In addition to being good for the environment, lowering your building’s consumption also reduces your water bill.

Here Are Five Measures You Can Take To Enhance Your Status As A Responsible Corporate Citizen


1. Install Touch-Free Faucets
Because executives carry their phones everywhere, they often become distracted before leaving the restroom. This sometimes results in running faucets. Touch-free sensors eliminate this trouble entirely. As an added bonus, the spread of germs is greatly limited. While they can be expensive, these water upgrades come highly recommended and are extremely popular.


2. Submeter Irrigation
Faulty irrigation systems have the potential to create seriously destructive water issues. If your business floods, the resulting water damage may necessitate a commercial restoration service provider to repair. Submetering irrigation alerts building managers and landscapers when too much water is being used, possibly indicating a faulty system. The ability to address issues early on could prevent an inconvenient disaster.


3. Add Flush Valves
Toilets installed before 1992 use between three and five gallons per flush. Introducing flush valves dwindles this by up to 40%. Unlike replacing old toilets with low-flush alternatives, you can keep your original commodes and the cost will be minimal.


4. Trade Plants
Interior designers sometimes attempt to counteract the industrial feel of office buildings with trees and other leafy offerings. Some vegetation needs to be watered more than others. Try less thirsty options, such as sago palms, spider plants, or orchids.


5. Change Urinals
Although they require different cleaning methods than traditional urinals, consider ones that are water-free. With one training session, your cleaning crews will have no trouble understanding how to handle them.
Addressing these common water issues will work wonders in lessening the amount your office in Hamilton, OH, uses. For the sake of the future, implement as many solutions as possible.

How To Avoid Musty Smells In Your Home

7/15/2022 (Permalink)

Mold growth on a drywall Serious flooding can affect your home and cause foul smells from mold growth.

How To Avoid Musty Smells In Your Home

When storms cause serious flooding and affect your Morgan Township, OH, home, you may notice several different types of foul odors in the aftermath, even when the waters recede. From mold growth to sewage chemicals, the flooding may leave your home smelling less than pleasant. Learning to identify these odors can be the first step to finding and eliminating their cause.

Musty Smells
If you detect an odor like wet dirty laundry after a flood, then you may be dealing with mold. There are many different types of fungi that can take hold after a flood, and many can develop as soon as 24 hours after the event. Mold does not require sunlight to grow and may grow unchecked in a variety of locations:

  • Behind drywall
  • Around insulation
  • Under carpeting

Having your home inspected after a serious flood can help to uncover hidden mold.

Sewer Odor
The strong, bitter smell of a sewer is hard to mistake for anything else. The odor may also smell like rotten eggs, especially if a nearby sewer has malfunctioned and sewage loss caused a flood in your home’s basement. Because any standing water in your home may contain contaminants and bacteria, you may want to seal off the area until you can call a water damage and mitigation service to come to drain it away and deodorize your home so the offensive smell from the flood water does not linger.

Dirt or Mud Smells
Serious flooding can bring silt, dirt and debris into your home. The moisture it contains can also encourage increased mold growth. You may detect an earthy, fishy or wormy odor from dirt or mud left behind in the wake of a flood. Your flood technicians can remove this debris and offer you options for odor removal as well, such as using ozone machines to clear the air.
Serious flooding in Morgan Township, OH, can affect your home and cause foul smells from mold growth and dirty standing water. Learning how to identify different odors can give you a head start on cleanup efforts, especially once help arrives.

4 Tips for Maintaining Your Smoke Alarms

6/27/2022 (Permalink)

Smoke alarm A properly working fire alarm is key for keeping you safe from flames.

Fire Alarm Tips

Millions rely on smoke detectors to alert them of a fire in their home, but are you aware of how many you'll need or how to maintain them? Here are four important fire alarm tips for preventing a disaster in your Reilly, OH, home.

1. Determine How Many You Need
First and foremost, you should determine how many smoke alarms you currently have and if you require more. Ideally, each home should be equipped with an alarm inside each bedroom and outside every sleeping area. There should be at least one on every level of a house, including basements. Do a walkthrough of your home to pinpoint alarm locations and determine if you require more.

2. Understand Which Fire Alarm Sensor You Have
There are two types of alarm sensors: photoelectric and ionization alarms. The former is geared toward detecting smoke damage and slow-smoldering fires, while the latter better detects fast-moving flames. It's advised to have both types of sensors within your house as you cannot predict which type of fire danger will occur.

3. Rotate Batteries Regularly
For optimal performance, change the batteries in every detector in your house roughly every six months. This ensures your alarm will not fail you in an emergency. If you don't follow this timeline, most models will let you know when it's time for a replacement by sounding off high-pitched beeps.

4. Keep Records of Alarm Installation
Just like their batteries, fire detectors don't last forever. It's advised to replace your alarms about every ten years, so keep a record of when they were installed to determine when it's time to replace them. Insufficient alarms can leave a fire not only endangering your family but destroying your home to the point where only fire damage restoration professionals can repair it.
A properly working fire alarm is key for keeping you safe from flames. Make sure your home has enough sensors and keep up with routine maintenance for maximum safety.

Tips for Troubleshooting Your Commercial Underground Sprinkler System

6/19/2022 (Permalink)

Broken sprinkler head Check the sprinkler heads.

Troubleshooting Techniques for Commercial Underground Sprinkler Systems

Installing an underground sprinkler system at your commercial property in Lemon Township, OH, makes your property more appealing to potential customers and clients. If the system is working properly, it can save you a lot of time watering and maintaining your lawn. If the system fails, however, it can cause a huge headache for your maintenance staff. Thankfully, there are some easy troubleshooting tips to try.

1. Look for Cracks in the Pipes
Cracks in the supply line of an irrigation system are quite common. As trees grow, their root systems can damage and crack the plastic pipes. This allows the pipe to fill with tree roots. Low water pressure is one of the most common results.
Property that sees excessive foot and bike traffic may also be susceptible to sprinkler damage. The added pressure can force the soil to crack the pipes.
If you spot pooling water in a specific area, turn off the water and dig down to the pipe. Cut the pipe down to the leak, grind the ends and install a repair fitting.
Broken pipes and other irrigation problems can cause significant flooding and damage to your property. If you see signs of water damage, contact a water damage cleanup professional right away.

2. Check the Sprinkler Heads 
It is a wise idea to conduct routine maintenance on your irrigation system. Sprinkler heads should be inspected quite frequently for cracks and damage. Debris and dirt should be removed periodically as well. Replacing a broken head is quite simple and can prevent a small issue from becoming a huge problem.

3. Inspect the Sprinkler Zones
If a zone is not turning on, there may be an electrical problem. If your maintenance staff employs an electrician they may be able to remedy the situation. However, it may be necessary to call a licensed electrician to inspect the irrigation system.
Keep your underground sprinkler system working well using some smart troubleshooting tips.