Steps for Mold Clean Up in Casper, WY
Moldy walls all the way down the hall.
If you notice musty odors in your home, or discover damage that appears to be mold, you should definitely have a professional look at it. A visual inspection from SERVPRO of Casper can help identify what caused the damage, and what needs to be done to correct it.
Sometimes, we may recommend that you have an Industrial Hygienist perform testing. While home mold test kits are a popular, inexpensive purchase at local hardware stores, they are inadequate for proper mold assessment. An Industrial Hygienist is an expert in Indoor Air Quality, and is properly trained to collect samples and analyze them. Once the analysis is done, an Industrial Hygienist writes a mold remediation protocol, detailing the exact steps required to effectively remove the mold. Armed with this information, the professionals at SERVPRO of Casper can perform remediation services to bring your home or business back to a normal state.
Work Stress relief
According to the American Psychological Association, work-related stress unfortunately doesn’t just go away when you go home. When stress persists, it can take a toll on your health, and personal life.
A stressful work environment can cause headaches, stomachaches, sleep disturbances, short temper and difficulty concentrating. In worse cases, it can cause health problems such as anxiety, insomnia, high blood pressure, and a weak immune system. It can lead to depression, obesity, and heart disease. Some take up smoking, drinking or even use drugs.
These are common sources of work stress:
- Low salaries
- Excessive workloads
- Few opportunities for growth or advancement
- Work that isn’t engaging or challenging
- Lack of social support
- Not having enough control over job-related decision
- Conflicting demands or unclear performance expectations
It is very important to control the stress and take the proper steps before it affects your life.
Track your stressors. Keep a journal for a week or two to identify which situations create the most stress and how you respond to them. Include the people and circumstance involved and the physical setting and how you reacted. Did you raise your voice? Get a snack from the vending machine? Go for a walk? By taking notes you find patterns among your stressors and your reactions to them.
Take time to recharge. We need time to replenish and return to our pre-stress level of functioning. This requires “switching off” from work by having periods of time when you not engaging in work related activities, or thinking about them. When possible, take time off and unwind, so you come back to work feeling reinvigorated and ready to perform your best. When you’re not able to take time off, get a quick boost by turning off your smartphone and focus your attention on non-work activities for a while.
Learn how to relax. Techniques such as meditation, deep breathing exercises, and mindfulness. Start by taking a few minutes each day to focus on a simple activity like breathing, walking, or enjoying a meal. Being able to focus on a simple activity without distraction will get stronger will practice. You will find that you can apply it many different aspects of your life.
Get some support. Accepting help from trusted friends and family members can improve your ability to manage stress. Your employer may also have stress management resources available through them.
If you’re human, you’re going to have stress. But there is a healthy limit and an unhealthy limit. Don’t let it get to where it’s unhealthy!
Wild Fire Zones
We have had a really wet spring this year, and that can mean two different things. On one hand, the trees, grass and shrubs are growing lush and green. But unfortunately in Casper, it does turn brown later in the season, and makes fuel for fire. There are many things that can start a wildland fire, anywhere from human irresponsibility to naturally-occurring events, such as lightning strikes. There are steps you can take to protect your home, whether you reside in the city, up in the mountains, or out on the Wyoming prairies. There are 3 types of defensive zones to help protect your home:
- Prune and maintain any plants to prevent excessive growth. Also, remove all dead branches, stems and leaves within and below the plant.
- Do not store firewood or other combustible materials anywhere in this zone. Keep firewood at least 30 feet away from structures, and uphill if possible.
- Remove any branches that overhang or touch the roof, and remove all fuelswithin 10 feet of the chimney.
- Remove all pine needles and other debris from the roof, deck and gutters.
- Rake pine needles and other organic debris at least 10 feet away from all decks and structures.
- Limit the number of dead trees (snags) to one or two per acre. Be sure snags cannot fall onto the house, power lines, roads or driveways.
- Small groups of two or three trees may be left in some areas of Zone 2, but leave a minimum of 30 feet between the crowns of these clumps and surrounding trees.
- Remove all ladder fuels from under remaining trees. Prune tree branches off the trunk to a height of 10 feet from the ground or 1/3 the height of the tree, whichever is less.
- Locate propane tanks and natural gas meters at least 30 feet from any structures, preferably on the same elevation as the house.
- The tank should not be located below your house because if it ignites, the fire would tend to burn uphill. Conversely, if the tank or meter is located above your house and it develops a leak, gas will flow downhill into your home.
- Do not visibly screen propane tanks or natural gas meters with shrubs, vegetation or flammable fencing. Instead, install 5 feet of nonflammable ground cover around the tank or meter.
- While tree pruning generally is not necessary, it may be a good idea from the standpoint of personal safety to prune trees along trails and firefighter access roads. Or, if you prefer the aesthetics of a well-manicured forest, you might prune the entire area. In any case, pruning helps reduce ladder fuels within tree stands, thus reducing the risk of crown fire.
- Remember to consider the hazards associated with ladder fuels. A forest with a higher canopy reduces the chance of a surface fire climbing into the tops of the trees, and might be a priority if this zone has steep slopes.
Safety Tips on How to Handle Mold
Safety Tips on How to Handle Mold
If you see visible mold or think you have mold in a room of your home, there are some measures you should take to keep it from spreading.
Things to do:
- Call a Certified Industrial Hygienist (CIH)
- Stay out of the affected room
- Turn off the HVAC system in that room
Things not to do:
- Don’t disturb the mold
- Don’t blow air in the area
- Don’t spray bleach or other cleaning products
SERVPRO of Casper specializes in mold remediation. We have technicians that are IICRC (Institute of Inspection of Cleaning and Restoration) certified specifically as AMRT (Applied Microbial Remediation Technicians).
If you have any concerns that you may have mold, call SERVPRO of Casper before buying the “do-it-yourself” mold testing kits from the hardware store. These kits typically involve a swab and a Petri dish. Because normal environments always contain a small amount of mold spores, using them will always end with a “positive” test result, even if there is no real problem in your home. A visual inspection by the professionals at SERVPRO, coupled with testing performed by a qualified CIH will give you accurate answers, and a plan to properly take care of any microbial problems you may have.
Moldy Crawl Spaces
Mold in Crawl Space
When was the last time you checked out your crawlspace?
If you haven’t inspected your crawlspace in a while you probably should, and check it regularly as well. At any time you could have water damage in your crawlspace and never know it. People often think that their crawlspace is just dirt, and the water will simply absorb into the ground. Often, this is true. But larger amounts of water, continuous leaks, or high bentonite content in the soil (common in Casper) could mean that it will not dry out on its own quickly. With saturated soil and standing water, high humidity can develop in the crawlspace. If that humidity condenses on the underside of the subfloor and flooring joists, secondary damage can occur. If these porous materials stay wet, mold can grow. With its lack of sunlight and air flow, a crawlspace is a perfect environment for microbial growth.
If you check your crawlspace and see any suspected microbial growth, give SERVPRO a call. We will come out and do a free inspection. We will review the steps that need to be taken to bring your crawlspace back to a safe state. Call SERVPRO of Casper today for your free assessment at 307-235-6558.
The different types of flooding.
Did you know that there is 3 Types of Floods? If you didn’t there is, there is Coastal (Surge Flooding), Fluvial (River Flood), and Pluvial (Surface Flood). Each is unique on how much damage it can cause, and how soon the cleanup can be. Here are the ways the 3 are different from each other.
Coastal (Surge Flooding) -
A coastal flood lies on the coast of a sea, ocean, or other large body of open water. Extreme tidal conditions caused by severe weather such as hurricanes and other storms. These types of storms push water onshore which causes coastal flooding. In this type of flood, water overwhelms low-lying land and often causes devastating loss of life and property.
Coastal Flooding is categorized in three levels:
Minor: A small amount of beach erosion will occur but no major damage is expected.
Moderate: A fair amount of beach erosion will occur as well as damage to some homes and businesses.
Major: Serious threat to life and property. Large-scales beach erosion will occur, numerous roads will be flooded, and many structures will be damaged.
Fluvial (River Flooding) –
River, or riverine flooding, occurs when excessive rainfall over an extended period of time causes a river to exceed its capacity. Snow melt and Ice jams can also cause the river to spill over. The damage from the fiver flood can be widespread as the overflow affects smaller rivers downstream.
There are two main types of riverine flooding:
- Overbank flooding occurs when water rises overflows over the edges of a river or stream. This is the most common and can occur in any size channel. Anywhere from streams, to rivers.
- Flash flooding can be intense, high velocity torrent of water that occurs in an existing river channel with little to no notice. Flash floods are very dangerous, and destructive not only because of the force of the water, but also the hurling debris that is often swept up in the flow.
Pluvial (Surface Flood) -
Surface water flood is caused when heavy rainfall creates a flood event independent of an overflowing water body. You don’t have to be near a body of water to be out of a flood risk, it can even happen in urban areas.
After Fire Tips
Fire/Smoke damage kitchen.
The aftermath of a fire can be chaotic and emotionally devastating. You may be concerned with the damage done to your property, and the business you’re likely to lose as a result of it. Although it can be difficult, it’s important to stop, take a deep breath, and prioritize what needs to be done. Follow these steps to help make sure your loss goes smoothly as possible.
- Contact Your Insurance Provider
It’s important to contact your insurance provider first, so that you can begin the process of filing a claim. Your provider will want to send a claims adjuster to assess the damage, and the sooner this can be scheduled, the sooner you will receive payment to pay for restoration services.
2. Secure Your Property
Fire can leave your building with large holes in the walls and ceilings, leaving the contents exposed to further damage. Your insurance will cover damages from the fire, but it won’t cover damage from rain and snow entering the building after the fire, or theft resulting from the building being easily accessible.
- Document the Damage
Your insurance company will require evidence of your losses. Take photographs or videos of as much damage as you can without putting yourself in danger. It’s also good to compile a list of everything lost in the fire. If you have receipts or other documentation, start pulling these together.
4. Resist the Temptation To Clean Up
Although you may feel tempted to begin throwing things away or making repairs, don’t. It’s important that the claims adjuster has a chance to assess the original damage. It’s also better to let a fire restoration specialist assess your property before throwing it out. Items you believe to be destroyed by smoke damage may actually be salvageable through smoke cleaning.
If you experience a loss, give us a call. We will come out and discuss the process, on what we can and cannot do, and how to get started in the restoration process.
Mold Clean Up
Mold damage on a water loss
A lot of different materials in your home can be affected by water damage, and some of these materials can grow mold if not taken care of right away. Here are a few examples:
The paper backing on drywall is organic, and is susceptible to mold growth. Humidity and moisture in a structure can aggravate the growth of mold. Drywall that is contaminated by mold has to be cut out and removed properly, to keep any spores and hyphal fragments from spreading.
Because wood is a purely organic material, mold can quickly form and colonize on it. This is especially true of framing that is covered by drywall. The lack of light and airflow inside a wet wall cavity creates optimal conditions for mold growth. Once moldy drywall is removed, some mold growth on the wood framing can be expected. It is important that the mold is properly removed from the framing, and that the framing is properly dried, before new drywall is installed.
Modern carpets are made almost exclusively of synthetic materials. While synthetic materials are not a viable food source for mold, the carpet face, backing, and pad normally have dust trapped in or under them. This dust (dead skin cells, pet dander, etc.) can support mold growth. Carpet and pad can hold a lot of water, so it’s important to begin water removal quickly. If there is mold on the carpet, just like on drywall, properly removing carpet and pad and treating the subfloor will help prevent further spreading of spores. After structural drying is complete, new carpet and pad can be installed.
If you encounter any mold in your home, call SERVPRO of Casper at 307-235-6558 today. We can send a certified technician to inspect the damage, and guide you through the steps to remediate it properly.
What to do in case of a flood
Many people believe that because we Wyomingites don’t live near an ocean, our homes are not at risk of flooding. Even though we won’t have sea water near our homes, we still can have rain water, river water, or even lake water. You should always be prepared for anything, because it can happen when you least expect it. Here are some tips to stay safe while you’re indoors and outdoors.
- Turn off the power and water mains if instructed to do so by local authorities.
- Boil tap water until water sources have been declared safe.
- Avoid contact with floodwater. It may be contaminated with sewage or contain dangerous insects or animals.
- Continue listening to local area radio, NOAA radio or TV stations for the latest information and updates.
- Don’t use gas or electrical appliances that have been flooded until they have been inspected by a qualified technician.
- Dispose of any food that comes into contact with flood water.
- Don’t walk, swim or drive through floodwater. Just six inches of fast-flowing water can knock you over.
- If caught on a flooded road with rapidly rising waters, get out of the car quickly and move to higher ground.
- Don’t walk on beaches or riverbanks.
- Don’t allow children to play in or near flood water.
- Avoid contact with floodwater. It may be contaminated with sewage or contain dangerous insects or animals.
- Stay out of areas subject to flooding. Under passes, dips, low spots, canyons, washes, etc. can become filled with water.
You can never be too prepared for any kind of disaster. The most important thing is to stay aware of conditions, so you can ensure the safety of yourself and your family.
When it comes to commercial cleaning and restoration services, SERVPRO is a leader in the industry. We are available 24/7 365 day. SERVPRO of Casper responds quickly to your business’s fire, water, and mold damage emergencies.
Here are some commercial services we provide:
- Commercial Restoration Services
- Commercial Water Damage Restoration
- Commercial Fire Damage Restoration
- Commercial Mold Remediation
- Commercial Storm and Major Events
We also offer Commercial Cleaning Services. We have the specialized equipment, various products, and skilled cleaning methods to make your business look its very best.
- Commercial Cleaning Services
- Air Ducts and HVAC
- Bio-hazard and Sewage
- Post-Construction Cleanup
- Carpet, upholstery, area rugs, and drapes
- Ceilings, Walls and Hard Floors
- Odor Removal and Deodorization
When the need arises for professional cleaning or emergency restoration services, SERVPRO of Casper is here for you to make it “Like it never even happened.”