Recent Posts

Simple Steps to Keeping Your Restaurant Kitchen Free of Mold

2/21/2018 (Permalink)

The last thing you want to see is unsightly mold growth in your restaurant kitchen in Athens, GA. Unfortunately, kitchens are known to be highly active areas of mold development with prime conditions for growth due to high humidity and possible water damage. Help keep your restaurant free of mold by following these simple steps to a clean and pristine kitchen space.

1. Clean the refrigerators on a regular basis. Using only one tablespoon of baking soda mixed with a quart of water, you can easily wipe down, rinse and dry the interior of your fridges every 2-3 months and prevent any traces of mold. If mold is visible, it’s best to call professional mold removal specialists to handle the task of eliminating any significant growth and mold spore buildup.

2. Use vinegar more generously around the kitchen — and not just in meals. Vinegar has always been praised for a variety of reasons, but it acts as a powerful disinfectant, making it especially handy for cleaning purposes. Prevent mold growth by using vinegar throughout your regular cleaning regimen, including washing your cutting boards with it weekly and pouring a small amount into the garbage disposal once a week before running it.

3. Leave exhaust fans and vents running while you cook. Moisture is a calling card for mold, and places with higher than average humidity levels are guaranteed to see it grow over time. Keep ventilation systems open and activated while preparing and cooking food to avoid excessive humidity.

4. Take extra precautions to keep food mold-free. Avoid potential mold on your food by paying more attention to what you buy. Follow expiration dates, pass on bruised produce and cover cooked foods after they’re served to deflect any mold spores in the air.

Never let mold become an added ingredient. Avoid mold growth by following these steps to a clean restaurant kitchen in Athens, GA or call experts in to take care of any mold development. Make changes like lowering high humidity levels and storing fresh foods to ensure more pristine conditions and a happier environment. Visit http://www.SERVPROathens.com for more information on mold.

How To Prepare Your Company for a Fire

2/14/2018 (Permalink)

To ensure the safety of your employees in Athens, GA it’s important to prepare everyone in your workplace for a potential fire. Because fires can be fast, unexpected, and chaotic, creating a fire contingency plan is a valuable part of your company’s safety procedures. Here are a few things you can do to prepare everyone in your workplace for a disaster:

Have an Evacuation Plan

Employees should be able to identify several escape routes, especially if your building has more than one floor. Some vital parts of your company’s escape plan should include:

* A way of accounting for your employees
* A designated assembly area for those in your workplace
* A list of individuals who are authorized to take charge in the event of an evacuation

By including these important parts in your escape route plan, you can help ensure the safety of your employees during an evacuation.

Install an Alarm System

Having smoke detectors and fire alarms can notify and protect employees from harm. Be sure to install any needed alarms, and check them regularly. Your employees should be taught the distinction between alarms so that they know which actions to take. Informing your company of a fire is a vital part of a smart fire contingency plan.

Inform Your Employees

Hold a meeting or conduct training sessions to help prepare your employees for a fire in the building. Present the escape plan and discuss evacuation procedures. You can also inform your company about the various ways to report a fire, such as pulling a manual fire alarm or calling an internal emergency number. By teaching your workers what to do when a disaster occurs, you can reduce risk and confusion.

With these steps, you can prepare each of your employees for a fire. Be sure to take precautions to stop fire hazards from even beginning. Having a fire contingency plan and an evacuation plan for the whole company is one of the best ways to be prepared. Visit http://www.SERVPROathens.com for more information on commercial fire damage.

4 Tips To Stay Safe When Using Space Heaters

2/10/2018 (Permalink)

Many people rely on space heaters during the winter to stay warm. It is an efficient way to stay warm, and you will not have to worry about your electric bill being as high because space heaters do not use as much power as your HVAC system. However, there are dangers associated with these products. A burned space heater is extremely dangerous, so follow these tips to avoid having a fire in your home in Athens, GA.

1. Turn Off When Not in Use

You do not want to leave your heater running when you are not in the room. Turn it off every time you leave. Many heaters come with a timer feature, so if you want to run it while you are asleep, you can set the timer to shut it off shortly.

2. Keep Heater Three Feet Away From Furniture

You can decrease the likelihood of having a burned space heater and needing smoke cleanup by keeping the device at least three feet away from furniture, bedding, clothes, drapes and rugs. You should also ensure your heater is on a level surface. You do not want to risk the heater tipping over and coming into direct contact with carpeting.

3. Keep Away From Moisture

Never set your heater in an area that is at risk of flooding. That means you should keep it out of basements and bathrooms. You should never touch a heater when you have wet hands.

4. Inspect Regularly

You should inspect your heater when you first purchase it to ensure there are no defects. After that, you need to continue maintenance to prevent dust and other allergens from building up on the heater’s filters.

Heaters are a great asset when you are shivering from the cold. However, a burned space heater is a safety issue you never want to expose your family to. With a few preventive actions, you can use your heater for years to come. Visit http://www.SERVPROathens.com for more information on fire damage.

Mold Removal Tips From the Experts

1/18/2018 (Permalink)

The flood is over, the water is drained and it’s time for you to start thinking about the cleanup effort. How you handle the cleanup is dependent on a few different factors. First, has the mold growth spread over 10 square feet? If it has, it’s suggested that you have the remediation performed by professionals in Palestine, TX. The following are four tips on how to deal with mold damage after a flood.

1. Perform Quick Mitigation

In 24-48 hours, mold growth can occur in standing water. If it wasn’t possible to drain the water in time to prevent the growth, then as soon as the water is extracted, it’s time to act. The cleanup should occur quickly to stop the mold from spreading or growing in severity.

2. Fix Any Leaks

Imagine putting in all the hard work to disinfect your home from the bacterial growth after a flood, only to have it all come back because of a leaky pipe. Before you start the cleanup process, make sure that there aren’t any leaks or broken pipes to contend with.

3. Clean Hard Surfaces

Hard, non-porous surfaces can be scrubbed clean of mold. A mix of warm water, detergent and vinegar is generally all homeowners need to clean mold from their furniture or walls. In some cases, a stronger formula may be necessary.

4. Tear out Porous Materials

Soft, absorbent materials may need to be tossed out. Carpets, ceiling tiles and padded furniture often have to be removed from the home. In porous materials, mold can grow into the empty spaces and can’t always be removed completely.

After a flood, the moist environment and standing water usually leads to mold growth. It can be impossible to stop it from happening. However, with these tips and the help of a professional remediator, your home will be as good as new in no time. Visit http://www.SERVPROathensmineolapalestine.com for more information on storm damage.

Cleaning Up Your Home After Water Damage

1/18/2018 (Permalink)

While water is healthy to drink and useful for cleaning and bathing, it can cause devastating damage if you have to deal with broken pipes. Not only may you lose valuable and sentimental personal belongings before you begin water cleanup, but water damage can also render appliances useless, cause mold to grow and ruin sheetrock and insulation. The restoration process can be long and difficult, but following the five steps listed below can help make the process easier.

1. Remove remaining water. The longer standing water stays in your home, the more damage it can cause. It is important to remove any water as quickly as possible to allow the building to completely dry. Depending on how much water remains in your home, you can use any one of the following items to remove it:

• Sump pump
• Trash pump
• Wet vac
• Buckets
• Towels

2. Assess the damage. Once the water has been removed, you can see the extent of the damage. You may have to tear out carpet to remove mold, rip out sheetrock and replace it, and scrub multiple surfaces and materials to get rid of bacteria.

3. Remove mold and damaged materials. If water damage has caused mold to grow, it is important to remove the fungus as soon as possible. Evaporating moisture and treating the area with antifungal spray may help rid your home of mold.

4. Clean non-porous items. After removing any traces of mold, you can begin the final, most time-consuming stages of cleanup. Any items that do not absorb water, such as furniture, counters, toys, or storage containers, that came in contact with the water need to be scrubbed thoroughly with warm water and disinfectant to remove potentially-harmful germs.

5. Clean porous items. Items that may have absorbed water should be cleaned thoroughly to keep them from mildewing. Porous items may include anything from the following list:

• Curtains
• Stuffed animals
• Clothes
• Bedding

Dealing with water damage in Palestine, TX can be overwhelming, but following these five steps can make water cleanup easier. Broken pipes may be your worst nightmare, but the damage can be repaired with the right tools. Visit http://www.SERVPROathensmineolapalestine.com for more information on water damage.

What To Do After Experiencing Water Damage on Commercial Property

1/18/2018 (Permalink)

Water damage is stressful and messy enough when it is in a private residence, but broken pipes in a commercial property can be catastrophic. Lost inventory and damaged interiors mean the business owner and any employees are out of an income until things are clean again. If you are dealing with this situation, here’s how to get your business back on track as soon as possible.

Protect Yourself and Your Building From Further Damage

As soon as you notice flooding, unplug anything electric in the area and shut off the circuit breaker that powers the space. Doing so ensures you do not further damage anything by causing an electrical fire. Never turn the electricity back on until a professional ensures it is safe. Remediation companies work with digital meters that can detect moisture behind walls or in other hidden areas to ensure there are no dangers lurking where you can't see them. Be sure to protect yourself as well by taking these measures:

• Wearing boots high enough to prevent water seepage
• Wearing long gloves while you are cleaning
• Keeping a lookout for snakes or other dangerous animals or insects attracted to water

Document the Damage

Before your insurance company pays for damages, it will want to see proof of the extent of it. Start at the front door of your business and walk through any damaged areas that are safe to enter. Take pictures of any damage and any standing water as you go along. It is also important to ensure your insurance company covers flooding before water damage becomes a problem. Some flood-prone areas require separate insurance policies.

Contact a Professional

Never attempt large water cleanup jobs on your own. A professional water remediation company in Palestine, Tx has the tools and knowledge necessary to ensure your business will be safe for you, employees and customers. Professionals can help you salvage items and remove all water to prevent mold or other ongoing problems related to water damage. Always hire a reputable, licensed and insured company.
Visit http://www.SERVPROathensmineolapalestine.com for more information on commercial water damage.

SERVPRO of Athens/Mineola/Palestine specializes in the cleanup and restoration of residential and commercial property

1/5/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Athens/Mineola/Palestine is an IICRC firm. The Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) creates the standards for the restoration industry and provides training and certification to restoration companies. IICRC Certified Firms have the right to display the IICRC Certified Logo.

IICRC Certified Firms must

• Present accurate information to consumers and conduct business with honesty and integrity.

• Require a technician on all jobs who has been formally trained and passed all required tests.

• Require a continuing education program to keep technicians up-to-date on the latest changes in the industry.

• Maintain liability insurance to protect all parties in the event of an accident.

• Maintain a written complaint policy and agree to Better Business Bureau or similar arbitration to resolve disputes, and accept the conclusions and recommendations of arbitration.

The IICRC Develops The Standards For The Restoration Industry

The IICRC has been the driving force in establishing the main industry standards and reference guides for professional carpet cleaning, water damage restoration and mold remediation. These IICRC standards take years to develop and require the coordination of experts in the field: manufacturers, industry organizations, insurance professionals, training schools, contractors, and public health professionals.

Every five years, the standards are reviewed and updated. The water damage restoration field changes rapidly with advancements in technology and science, and therefore the standards must evolve to keep pace.

About SERVPRO of Athens/Mineola/Palestine

SERVPRO of Athens/Mineola/Palestine specializes in the cleanup and restoration of residential and commercial property after a fire, smoke or water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration and we are an IICRC Certified Firm. We believe in continuous training: from initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.

Facts About Smoke and Soot

1/5/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Facts About Smoke and Soot Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage? Call Us Today – 903-561-0309

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.

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 Athens/Mineola/Palestine 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 – 903-561-0309

Water Damage During the Holidays

12/20/2017 (Permalink)

Flooding and water emergencies don’t wait for regular business hours and neither do we. SERVPRO of Athens/Mineola/Palestine provides emergency cleaning and restoration services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week—including all holidays.

Faster To Any Size Disaster

Flooding and water damage is very invasive. Water quickly spreads throughout your home and gets absorbed into floors, walls, furniture, and more.  SERVPRO of Athens/Mineola/Palestine arrives quickly and starts the water extraction process almost immediately. This immediate response helps to minimize the damage and the cleaning and restoration costs.

Need Emergency Service? Call Us 24/7 – 903-561-0309

Water Damage Timeline

Within Minutes

  • Water quickly spreads throughout your property, saturating everything in its path.
  • Water is absorbed into walls, floors, upholstery, and belongings.
  • Furniture finishes may bleed, causing permanent staining on carpets.
  • Photographs, books, and other paper goods start to swell and warp.

Hours 1 - 24:

  • Drywall begins to swell and break down.
  • Metal surfaces begin to tarnish.
  • Furniture begins to swell and crack.
  • Dyes and inks from cloth and paper goods spread and stain.
  • A musty odor appears.

48 Hours to 1 Week:

  • Mold and mildew may grow and spread.
  • Doors, windows, and studs swell and warp.
  • Metal begins to rust and corrode.
  • Furniture warps and shows signs of mold.
  • Paint begins to blister.
  • Wood flooring swells and warps.
  • Serious biohazard contamination is possible.

More Than 1 Week:

  • Restoration time and cost increase dramatically; replacing contaminated materials and structural rebuilding may be extensive.
  • Structural safety, mold growth, and biohazard contaminants pose serious risks to occupants.

About SERVPRO of Athens/Mineola/Palestine

SERVPRO of Athens/Mineola/Palestine specializes in the cleanup and restoration of residential and commercial property after a fire, smoke or water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.

Light the Night Safely

12/11/2017 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Light the Night Safely SERVPRO® of Athens/Mineola/Palestine wishes you a safe and happy holiday season!

Pretty lights, candles, and decorations are just a few of the items bringing charm and cheer to the holiday season—however, if they are not used carefully your holidays may go from festive to frightening.

The American Red Cross offers the following safety tips to help greatly reduce the fire risk in your home or business this holiday season.

  • Place Christmas trees, candles, and other holiday decorations at least three feet away from heat sources like fireplaces, portable heaters, radiators, and heat vents.
  • Make sure that light strings and other holiday decorations are in good condition. Do not use anything with frayed electrical cords and always follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Always unplug tree and holiday lights before leaving the property or going to bed.
  • Never use lit candles to decorate a tree. Always extinguish candles before leaving the room or going to bed.

SERVPRO® of Athens/Mineola/Palestine wishes you a safe and happy holiday season!