Recent Posts

Mold in Your Rental Property? Here's What to Do

1/24/2020 (Permalink)

picture of three men wearing face masks, two of the men in the background one closest to camera holding clipboard If one of your properties needs mold removal services give our team a call at (603) 352-7251.

As a landlord, you are responsible for providing a safe, comfortable environment for your tenants, which is why calls about potential mold damage can be scary. Fortunately, by knowing what to do if you know or suspect mold to be present in your rental property, you can fulfill your responsibilities smoothly. Here is a little more information about mold and how to manage this situation as a landlord. 

Understanding & Resolving Mold Issues

How Are Mold Issues Diagnosed?

Since mold and mildew can create visible discolorations, landlords may hear reports of green, black, or brown mold on walls, ceilings, or within bathroom areas. Other tenants may suspect mold based on moldy or musty smells in their homes. All mold reports should be taken seriously, and remediation handled ASAP to stop the mold in its tracks and prevent further damage. 

To verify the presence of mold, to pinpoint the severity of mold presence in a property and to zero in on the problem areas where mold is thriving, having an indoor air quality assessment is often the best first course of action. Getting this mold inspection done provides our abatement team with helpful information about the pathogens, including which varieties are present and how much work it will entail to remove the spores and treat the affected areas.

How Is Mold Removed?

During the mold removal process, professionals take every necessary precaution to avoid spreading the pathogens. When the mold removal process begins, the team creates a negative air pressure system to vent air and any mold spores outdoors during abatement. Next, the areas are sprayed down with a special antiseptic solution to kill mold and keep it from spreading, and then the impacted areas are removed if needed.

Mold removal is never something you as a landlord should attempt, nor should you encourage tenants to handle it on their own. Call our team and we will follow the latest industry guidelines to get rid of the mold safely and efficiently.

If one of your properties needs mold removal, don’t hesitate to reach out to SERVPRO of Cheshire County in Westmoreland, NH. With a focus on safety and a commitment to customer service, our team handles mold inspection, containment, and removal as well as remediation for smoke and flood damage and 24/7 emergency services. To find out more, give our office a call at (603) 352-7251.

The Do's & Don'ts of Dealing With Water Damage

1/22/2020 (Permalink)

picture of water on a wooden floor with orange and blue background if you need water damage restoration services in the Westmoreland, NH, area, turn to the experts at SERVPRO of Cheshire County today.

During the winter, the freezing temperatures and unpredictable weather can put your home in a vulnerable position. Pipes can burst, flooding your living space, or melted snow could leak in through your roof. If you’ve never handled a situation like this, learn more about what to do and not do, and when it’s time to work with a water damage restoration crew.

Do:

Shut off the water if possible.

If a frozen pipe bursts and is spewing water into your home, first, try to cut off the water at its source. This would be the water main shut-off valve, which is often located in the basement or along an exterior wall. Turn off all the water flowing into your house by rotating this valve clockwise. This will minimize the amount of water damage restoration required.

Remove wet area rugs.

Carpeting that has been water damaged can be difficult to dry out when stapled to the floor. However, area rugs are easy to lift and hang up for adequate ventilation. Even if you don’t plan on keeping the rugs, removing them allows the flooring underneath to dry.

Don’t:

Vacuum excess water.

You might have heard that water damage professionals use “vacuums” to quickly collect the water. However, these aren’t ordinary vacuums—they’re designed to pick up liquids. If you use your household vacuum, you could be at risk of electric shock when the water makes contact with the electrical current powering the machine.

Wait to call professionals.

While shutting off the water main will help mitigate the damage, you can’t fully restore your home alone. Only a professional water damage restoration crew will have the tools and techniques to remove all the moisture and sanitize the space to prevent mold and mildew growth. If drywall or other structural elements are affected, technicians can also conduct the repairs necessary to make your home safe again.

If you need water damage restoration services in the Westmoreland, NH, area, turn to the experts at SERVPRO of Cheshire County today. Since 1978, we have been restoring properties ravaged by water, fire, and mold to pristine condition. We’re also available 24/7, so you can rest easy knowing help is only a call away. Call us anytime at (603) 352-7251 for immediate assistance.

The Do's & Don'ts of Handling Grease Fires

1/14/2020 (Permalink)

picture of a hand holding a pan over gas stove with large orange and yellow flames rising above pan, black and orange frame Our Team Can Be Reached Anytime In The Event Of A Fire Damage By Calling: (800) 352-7251

It can be fun to experiment with cooking in the home kitchen, but some ingredients require special care to be used safely, like cooking oil. When using oil, watch the temperature, because when it overheats, it starts to boil and smoke before catching on fire. If you see flames, it’s natural to panic. To take control of the situation quickly and avoid the need for extensive fire damage repair, below are tips on what to do and what not to do when you have a grease fire.

Do:

Turn off the heat.

Once a fire breaks out, you might be tempted to remove the smoky pan from the stove burner. Fight the urge, as you could splash burning oil on yourself or other surfaces. The droplets are like embers, potentially igniting anything they land on. To prevent the fire from spreading, leave the pot where it is and turn off the burner.

Keep an extinguisher in the kitchen.

As a precaution, you should always have a working fire extinguisher in an easy-to-reach area of the kitchen. After you turn off the stove burner, pull the pin on the extinguisher and point the nozzle at the fire’s base before pressing the trigger. The dry chemicals released will put out the flames.

Don’t:

Use water on flames.

Unlike a regular fire, trying to douse grease fires with water could cause the flames to spread. That’s because pouring water on the oil could cause it to splash to other areas. The high temperature of burning grease also causes the water to vaporize into harmful steam.

Open doors and windows until the fire is out.

To clear the smoke, you might want to open doors and windows. Don’t do this until the fire is completely out. Otherwise, the oxygen in the fresh air coming in could fuel the flames, resulting in the need for more extensive fire damage repair.

If you need fire damage repair after a kitchen mishap, electrical problem, or other incident, contact the disaster recovery specialists at SERVPRO of Cheshire County. In the event of a plumbing problem or flood, our team can also use our four decades of experience to provide water clean-up services. To reach us anytime, call (800) 352-7251.

3 Ways Winter Storms Can Damage Your Home

12/9/2019 (Permalink)

A man dressed in tan pants, dark coat and hat raking large amounts of snow off of a roof If a storm hits your home or business, call the experts at SERVPRO of Cheshire County

Winter storms can be surprisingly destructive, even without record-breaking snowfall. Ice is dangerous long after the storm passes, not only when it falls, but also as a potential flooding hazard. To avoid an emergency, keep an eye out for the following conditions — or you may need water cleanup and restoration services this winter.

3 Wintertime Flood Hazards

Ice Dams

If a house isn’t correctly ventilated in the attic, heat will rise through the roof peak, causing the center of the roof to be warmer than the edges. After a snowstorm, this uneven temperature distribution causes the snow to melt at different rates. Ice then accumulates near the perimeter and keeps snow-melt from draining through the gutter system. This process is called ice damming. As the snow melts, water can dislodge the shingles and roof flashing and even pry apart gutter seams. Because water expands when it freezes, the cycle of freezing and thawing can magnify this damage.

If ice dams form on your gutters, water can eventually permeate the roof and cause wood-rot, mold, and drywall damage in your attic.

To combat ice dams:

  • Use insulation and caulk to keep the attic and roof cold.
  • Add roof and soffit vents to improve the ventilation outside your home.
  • Install a waterproof under-layer beneath the roofing shingles.

Snow Accumulation on the Roof

Another potential risk during the winter is snow accumulation. If heavy snowdrifts form on your roof, the weight can cause the structure to collapse. Various factors, such as the pitch and condition of your roof, affect the likelihood of this scenario. In general, if your house is up to code, it should be able to withstand average snowfall. For more information about snow accumulation on the roof, check the Federal Emergency Management Agency website.

Frozen Pipes

Frozen pipes are typical during the winter, especially in unheated rooms with water pipes, like the basement. Water sprinkler lines and hose bibs are also more susceptible to freezing, as the pipes are along exterior walls.

When a water pipe freezes, pressure builds until the pipe bursts. This usually causes flooding until the supply line is turned off. A frozen pipe typically requires water cleanup services.

To keep pipes from freezing:

  • Insulate pipes with specially designed foam sleeves.
  • Heat areas of your home that have water pipes.
  • Winterize outdoor plumbing fixtures, including sprinkler systems, pools, and garden hoses.

If a storm hits your home or business in the Westmoreland, NH area, call the experts at SERVPRO of Cheshire County at (800) 352-7251 for immediate water cleanup and restoration services. Our company is locally owned and operated yet comes with the support and resources of a nationally recognized franchise.

Is Your Business Emergency Ready?

12/5/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO house logo over green checkmark in black outlined box with black and green text saying Emergency Ready Profile To learn more about our ERP Program contact us at: (800) 352-7251

No one likes to imagine their own business facing the hardship of a disaster such as a flood or a fire. Did you know that the majority of businesses that bounce back after a disaster had a plan in place for when disaster strikes? Having an emergency plan could save your business, minimize the time your business is inactive as well as alleviate some stress. We have helped several local companies develop what we call an Emergency Ready Profile to help them be more prepared in the event of an emergency by putting all pertinent information at their fingertips in a physical copy of their emergency plan as well as through our mobile app. The Emergency Ready Profile, or ERP for short, is a no-cost service and can be tailored to meet the needs of schools, municipalities, real estate offices, insurance offices, apartment complexes and commercial properties.

Things You Can Do to Stay Safe at Home Through a Winter Storm

11/26/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO van inside a snowglobe with wintry scene If Your Home is Damaged in the Event of a Storm, You Can Call Us Anytime at (800) 352-7251.

Before the Storm

Knowing the difference between a winter storm watch and a warning is important. The National Weather Service (NOAA) will issue a winter storm watch when there is a potential for heavy snow or significant ice accumulations, usually at least 24 to 36 hours in advance. The criteria for this watch can vary from place to place. NOAA will issue a Winter Storm Warning when a winter storm is producing or is forecast to produce heavy snow or significant ice accumulations. The criteria for this warning can vary from place to place. Keeping an eye on the weather in your area is one thing that can help you stay safe during a winter storm, especially if you need to travel. For more alert terms visit noaa.gov.

Have These Items Ready at Home During a Winter Storm. These Will Especially Come in Handy if You Lose Power and It’s Unsafe/Impossible to Travel:

  • Flashlight
  • NOAA Weather Radio
  • Extra Batteries
  • First aid kit and any necessary medications
  • At least a 3-day supply of water (1 gallon per person daily)
  • Non-perishable food
  • Matches
  • Candles
  • Shovel/Roof Rake
  • Cell Phone with Charger

During the Storm

  • Only travel if necessary, fill your gas tank before the storm rolls in and keep a supply of emergency items in the vehicle:
    • Blanket
    • Jumper Cables
    • Hand/Toe Warmers
    • Warm clothes (hat, gloves, scarf, etc….)
    • Non-perishable snack food
    • Water
    • Flashlight
    • Tow Rope
    • Spare Tire
    • Sand or Kitty Litter
    • Snow Shovel and Brush
    • Cell Phone Charger
    • First Aid Kit
  • Listen for any critical information from NOAA.
  • Dress in layers to stay warm.

Congratulations Gary, Shane, Wil & Joe On Your New Certifications!!

11/26/2019 (Permalink)

picture of four SERVPRO employees with IICRC Certificates in front of a SERVPRO van From Left to Right: Project Manager Gary Ruotsala, Crew Chief Shane Maylin, Crew Chief Wil Blanchard and Technician Joe Langley

Here at SERVPRO of Cheshire County we always place a focus on continuing education so that we can consistently provide customers with the best of the best in service. Please join us in congratulating these guys in doing just that! Each of them is a valuable part of our team and we are proud to say they have gained new certifications through the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC). Pictured is Project Manager Gary Ruotsala, Crew Chief Shane Maylin, Crew Chief Wil Blanchard and Technician Joe Langley. They have received the following certifications:

Gary- WRT-Water Restoration Technician and FSRT-Fire And Smoke Damage Restoration Technician

Shane- WRT-Water Restoration Technician

Wil- WRT-Water Restoration Technician and FSRT-Fire And Smoke Damage Restoration

Joe- WRT-Water Restoration Technician

Awesome job guys!

Cold & Flu Season Is Here- Here Are Some Tips To Keep You And Your Coworkers Healthy!

11/8/2019 (Permalink)

picture of green tissue box with a tissue sticking out of the top. Black frame and green frame around tissue box. Our team hopes you have a healthy and happy holiday season!

Cold and flu season is upon us. To protect you and those you work with, it’s never a bad idea to revisit simple but important ways to stay healthy:

  • Eat Your Fruits & Veggies! Having healthy eating habits is one of the key components to warding off illness. Our bodies’ best line of defense against illness starts with the nutrients found in the food we eat. Everything in moderation is key to staying on track and not going overboard on junk food. Cancel your trips to the vending machine by stashing healthy snacks like fresh fruit, trail mix or jerky in the break room or at your desk.
  • Drink up. Staying hydrated is one of the most important habits you can have to help protect yourself from illness.
  • Bless you! Covering your sneezes and coughs will be greatly appreciated by your co-workers.
  • Count to 30. Counting to 30 now and then while washing your hands is a good way to remind yourself to slow down to thoroughly wash your hands. Having clean hands will help cut down on spreading germs.
  • Is Daylight Savings Cutting Into Your Workout Time? As the weather grows colder and the days shorter, it’s easy to fall into an exercising rut. The cold months are the perfect time of year for visiting the gym but if that does not appeal to you don’t worry- you don’t have to run on a treadmill to get a workout. Below are some fun ideas to break up the monotony and fit in some exercise at the same time:
  • Yoga
  • Join a Kickboxing Class
  • Join a Bowling League
  • Skiing/Snowboarding/Tubing/Sledding
  • Ice Skating/Hockey
  • Indoor Roller Skating/Roller Blading

Our team hopes you have a healthy and happy holiday season!

Congratulations Jake on Your New IICRC Certification!

11/5/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO employee in front of a SERVPRO poster in office Jake enjoyed and did a phenomenal job in his recent IICRC Course on Applied Microbial Remediation!

Jake is one of our Project Managers here at SERVPRO of Cheshire County and has been a valuable part of our team for over 13 years. Over the course of his career here, Jake has become our mold mitigation expert. Recently he completed the latest Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) 4-day training on top of the line mold and sewage remediation techniques. This is an important steppingstone for our business as we always place a focus on continuing education so that we can consistently provide customers with the best of the best in service. We are proud to share that Jake excelled in the training and now has the following certification: AMRT-Applied Microbial Remediation Technician. Awesome job Jake!

Jake also holds the following certifications through IICRC: WRT-Water Restoration Technician and SRT-Smoke Restoration Technician.

October is Fire Prevention Month

10/22/2019 (Permalink)

NFPA Illustration for Fire Prevention Week The NFPA sets aside a designated week in October every year to focus on fire prevention. Set aside time with your family to do the same!

Did you know that October is Fire Prevention Month? As the days get shorter and colder, thermostats are being turned up and fires are crackling in fireplaces it makes sense that October would be the month for revisiting fire safe practices. Below are a few things to keep in mind not just during Fire Prevention Month but throughout the year:

  • Have you checked on your smoke detectors? Smoke detectors in your home should be tested at least once a year. Be sure that the batteries and the detectors are still working properly!
  • Do you have an escape plan? Fire escape plans can be the difference between life and death in a fire emergency. Even if you feel you know the escape plan very well it’s a good idea to revisit the plan at least once a year. Practicing drills with your family is also a good idea just in case!
  • Unsafe cooking practices can ruin your holidays. Did you know that home cooking fires are four times more likely on Thanksgiving than on a typical day? Cooking fires are one of the leading causes of home fires especially around the holidays. Practicing safe kitchen habits is important in keeping you and your home safe!
  • Remember that every second counts in a fire emergency. According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), once the fire alarm goes off, you will likely have less than a minute or two to escape the home safely. It may be tempting to save prized possessions but your number one priority in a fire emergency needs to be getting out quickly and safely.
  • Stop, Drop & Roll. Remember learning this in grade school? It’s not just for kids. If you or a someone else catch fire it is important to remember those three words.

For more tips and fire safe practices, visit: firepreventionweek.org

If your home or business are damaged in a fire, we can help.

(800) 352-7251