Breathe Better: The Benefits of Air Duct Cleaning in Your Home and Business
Every breath you take in an indoor space comes from one main source—air ducts. In fact, air ducts circulate air throughout a home or business many times a day. Since that same air keeps cycling through your heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) system, it’s essential that it be as clean as possible.
The best way to ensure that your indoor air quality is at its best is through air duct cleaning. This process removes dust and contaminants within the ductwork of your home or business. Air duct cleaning involves using powerful vacuums to eliminate dust and debris so it can’t re-circulate throughout your indoor space. In fact, here are five main advantages to air duct cleaning:
- Reduces airborne allergens and irritants. Dust isn't the only thing lurking inside of your air ducts. There are also microorganisms such as pet dander, bacteria, pollen, mildew, mold spores, and similar toxins. These microorganisms can cause serious respiratory issues to people who are sensitive to airborne particles, such as those with allergies or asthma. Regular air duct cleaning promotes better indoor air quality and a healthier breathing environment.
- Promotes cleaner indoor spaces. Having air ducts cleaned professionally in your home or business helps reduce the dust that circulates through these indoor spaces. With less dust, it's easier to maintain a cleaner and more hygienic atmosphere.
- Improves indoor air flow. Because ductwork can accumulate a heavy buildup of dust and debris, it can prevent proper air flow from your furnace or air conditioner. This means your HVAC system has to work harder to heat or cool your home or business, and is less efficient and more costly when it comes to your energy bills. Clean ductwork helps maximize air flow and the performance of your heating and ventilation system.
- Creates healthier indoor air. Too much dust and debris in your ductwork can make it harder for people to breathe, especially if they suffer from a respiratory condition. But heathy people also suffer from breathing dirty air, as it can trigger sneezing, coughing, and sinus congestion. The bottom line: cleaner indoor air is healthier air to breathe.
- Promotes an odor-free environment. Many factors can contribute to creating a foul smell in your air ducts over time, such as pets, cleaning products, mold, tobacco and even food preparation. These trapped odors flow through your home or business every time you run your furnace or air conditioner. When these trapped particles are removed through air duct cleaning, you’re left with a fresher smelling atmosphere.
Trusted Experts in Air Duct Cleaning
SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County, Southeast Waukesha County has the experience and equipment to keep air ducts clean in your home or business. Our trained pros routinely inspect HVAC units because keeping them clean can extend systems’ the life, save you money, and give you cleaner air to breathe. For more information, call us at 414-421-3500 or contact us online.
That Works?! Why These Mold Prevention Tips Will Surprise You
It’s an issue in more than 50% of homes in the U.S. It can cause health issues. If its presence is severe enough, it can cost you thousands of dollars in home renovations. Yes, we’re talking about mold. But these surprisingly simple tips can help you prevent mold from growing in your home or business.
- Ventilate to let air circulate. Temperature changes can cause moisture levels to fluctuate and water to condense on surfaces in your home. You can prevent this excessive moisture in your home with proper ventilation. Open windows to let air in and use ceiling fans to keep air circulating and stop mold from becoming an issue. Using ceiling fans or exhaust fans are another good way to promote air circulation in your home.
- Maintain proper indoor humidity levels. Mold needs moisture to grow, so if your home humidity level is too high it is a breeding ground for excessive mold growth. Ideally, the EPA recommends homes be between 30% and 50% humidity in order to prevent mold growth and maximize air quality. If your home humidity level is more than 60%, there’s a good chance that mold growth can happen.
- Keep gutters clean and monitor outdoor drainage. Preventing mold growth inside your home can actually start by preventing outside issues. Make sure your home’s landscaping is designed to prevent water from pooling around your home and leaking into your foundation. Dirty or clogged gutters can also lead to excess water draining into your home through your siding, so make sure to keep gutters clean and flowing properly.
- Clean up spills. It’s a simple step, but one that many people often ignore: When there’s a water spill in your home, mop it up. Also, watch for other instances of water such as leaving wet clothes piled on the floor, wet carpeting, or even wet umbrellas. Eventually these small situations can lead to unpleasant smells and mold growth in as little as two days.
- Don’t ignore water leaks. Your home’s plumbing can be a troublesome source for mold growth. At least once a month, check all of your pipes to make sure there are no leaks. You should also look underneath your sinks, behind toilets, and in your basement for any signs of water leaks. Over time and if left unchecked, water leaks can cause serious mold issues and potential property damage.
Mold Experts, Here for You 24/7
If mold or water damage becomes an issue in your home or business, our expert team is here for you any day and any time at 414-421-3500. At SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County, Southeast Waukesha County, we have the training and equipment to combat mold issues and return your property back to its “Like it Never Even Happened” condition. Simply call or contact us online for more information about our offerings.
5 Things Every Business Owner Should Know About Water Damage
Leaking valves and appliances. Bursting pipes from frigid winter weather conditions. Plumbing problems…regardless of the cause, water damage can be a costly issue for your business.
Insurance claims statistics reveal that frozen, bursting pipes affect about 15% of small businesses. Water damage can wreak havoc on your carpets, inventory, and equipment. Water damage can also cause structural damage and mold growth. In more extreme instances, it can force you to relocate or close your business temporarily.
What can a business owner like you do to avoid a damaging water situation? Follow these 5 tips:
- Know where your main shut-off valve is. There is no time to waste if a water pipe breaks in your business. Make sure you know where the main water valve is located so you can get to it immediately. This will stop water from flowing to the building and prevent flooding until you can fix the problem.
- Keep the heat on inside your buildings and structures. Your thermostats should never be set below 50 degrees Fahrenheit, even when your business is closed or vacant. Keep batteries in your thermostats so they’re working properly, and make sure you keep the heat on sufficiently to prevent any pipes from freezing and bursting.
- Insulate and seal exterior building cracks or gaps. Your ultimate goal is to keep cold air from seeping into your building, especially in the dead of winter. Even a small crack or gap that’s not sealed can cause your water pipes to freeze. Use caulk, weather stripping, spray foam or other sealants to make your building more energy efficient and keep the cold air out.
- Wrap or insulate exposed pipes. Any exposed pipes can increase the risk of freezing, especially during some of our winter nights in Wisconsin. When water freezes in a pipe that’s not properly insulated, it expands and creates pressure which can cause the pipe to burst. Bursting pipes can lead to expensive structural damage or flooding. You can minimize your risk by wrapping the pipes with inexpensive foam insulation that's available at most hardware stores.
- Keep your HVAC and sprinkler systems in proper working order. Regular inspections of your HVAC, plumbing, and sprinkler systems are important in preventing an expensive loss or cleanup. In fact, these malfunctioning systems are the leading cause of property loss in commercial buildings.
If Water Damage Happens…
Hopefully these tips will help prevent costly issues in your business. But should you experience water damage, SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County, Southeast Waukesha County is here for you 24/7—simply call 414-421-3500. Our water damage restoration experts are your best resource in an emergency. We have the proper equipment and training to extract water properly and return your business to the condition it was in before water damaged happened. We also have the tools to detect any residual water that may be trapped behind walls or in tight spaces, so you don’t have to deal with water damage and mold growth problems for years to come.
What You Need to Know About Smoke Alarms and Carbon Monoxide Detectors
Smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors are must-have items in your home, period. They can mean the difference between life and death should an unexpected fire or carbon monoxide leak happen in your home. That’s why there are some important things to note about each…
What You Should Know About Smoke Alarms
According to the National Fire Prevention Association, nearly 80% of home fire deaths happen in properties that don’t have working smoke alarms. Fortunately, most local and state laws require that you have at least one working smoke alarm on every level of your home. The Consumer Product Safety Commission takes your safety further by also recommending smoke alarms outside sleeping areas and inside each bedroom.
If a smoke alarm goes off in your home, you should:
- Get down to the floor and stay low, as smoke rises and gets hotter the higher it goes.
- Feel your door; if it’s hot, use another exit.
- Meet loved ones at your designated spot outside your home, then call 911.
What to Know About Carbon Monoxide (CO) Poisoning and Detectors
Carbon monoxide (CO) is often called a “silent killer” because it’s a poisonous gas that’s tasteless, odorless, and colorless. CO is produced by many gas-burning appliances such as stoves, generators, portable heaters, and furnaces. It’s important to known these symptoms of CO poisoning, and that you should not hesitate to call 911:
- Chest Pain
Carbon monoxide detectors are inexpensive yet lifesaving devices should a CO gas leak happen in your home. Just as with snoke alarms, you should have a CO detector on every level in your home, including the basement. Also like smoke alarms, it’s important to check the batteries in CO detectors every 6 months.
Your Fire Damage Restoration Experts
Should you ever have to deal with a fire in your home, it’s comforting to know there is a 24/7 resource for fire damage restoration in your area—SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County, Southeast Waukesha County. Our trained specialists take fire damage restoration process seriously, using specialized equipment and expertise to restore your home and property to its pre-fire condition. Call us at 414-421-3500 or contact us online for more information.
Why SERVPRO?? You have a smell...What could it be?
Girl experiencing an odor
You only have one chance to make a first impression with visitors to your home or business. If you have a moist basement or even if you had water come through a door or window and it wasn't thoroughly and properly dried out, you could have mold. One indicator can be the smell, some people describe as "musty".
While molds are found naturally in the environment, an overabundance inside buildings is undesirable; some people can become ill. People most at risk are infants, children, pregnant women, elderly and people with compromised respiratory systems or weakened immune system.
Although experts disagree about the more controversial details of mold, they all agree that if you have excessive mold, it needs to be removed.
SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County has the proper equipment and experience to take care of your mold problem - big or small. Just give us a call!
5 Ways to Protect Your Property from Storm Damage
house with down tree from a storm
Springtime in Wisconsin marks the start of storm season. You never know how severe the storms will be from year to year, but damaged property can be a costly consequence.
Luckily a little bit of planning goes a long way when it comes to minimizing the damage to your home or business. Here are five ways you can keep your property as safe as possible when a storm hits:
- Check for Dead, Decaying, or Untrimmed Trees
Any trees in your yard that are dead, hollowed, or decaying from disease are easy targets for strong winds and rains during a storm. Falling trees can cause significant damage to your property. If you have several trees in your yard, it may be best to hire a tree expert to inspect them.
- Inspect Your Foundation and Roof
Check your home or building’s foundation for any cracks or areas where storm water could seep in. It’s also wise to inspect your roof each year to make sure you catch any minor damage before it can get serious. Do it yourself if you have a proper ladder and safety equipment, or hire a professional. Check for any damaged or missing shingles; if you have siding, it’s good to check and replace any loose pieces, too.
- Clean Your Gutters
Dirty or clogged gutters are a main culprit of water leaks into your basement or home. Make sure they are free from debris so the storm water can safely flow away from your home or building’s foundation.
- Check You Water Flow, Sump Pump, and Shut-Off Situation
Make sure your property is graded to allow water to flow away from your home or building during a storm. It’s good to check that your sump pump is in working order; if it backs up it can cause basement flooding. Know ahead of time how to shut off utilities like your water or power to ensure you’re ready and safer during a severe storm.
- Seal Your Doors and Windows
Keep your doors and windows sealed, as they can be a gateway to major damage in the event of a storm. Severe winds from a tornado can cause a tiny opening in your windows or doors to enlarge and let enough wind inside to cause damage to your walls and roof.
After a Storm Hits, SERVPRO is Here for You
If your property incurs any damage or flooding after a severe thunderstorm or tornado, SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County is here to help. Our team is dedicated to responding immediately to water and storm damage emergencies—this helps lessen the damage, limits further damage, and reduces your costs. Trust our 24/7 service whenever you need us at (414) 421-3500.
Emergency Supply Kit
Supplies for an emergency
Recommended items to include in a basic emergency supply kit:
- Water (one gallon per person per day)
- Food (non-perishable 3-day supply)
- Manual can opener
- Battery operated radio, preferably a NOAA Weather Radio with tone alert and extra batteries)
- Flashlight and extra batteries
- First aid kit
- Whistle to signal for help
- Dust masks or bandanas
- Plastic sheeting, garbage bags and duct tape
- Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities
- Local maps
- Hygiene items
- Important documents such as copies of insurance policies, identification and bank account information.
- Fire extinguisher
- Matches in a waterproof container
We hope you never need this list, but it's important to be prepared and make sure everyone in your family knows where to find your emergency kit as well as where your family is going to meet in the event of an emergency.
For Homeowners, putting out a fire can be worse than the fire itself
Residential Home Fire
A backdraft of emotions often sweeps over the homeowners after a fire ravages a home. fear, uncertainty, stress and doubt about the future of the property can overwhelm the homeowner long after the flames have been extinguished and the smoke has cleared.
So after the first wave of heroes have rescued the property, let SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County help you restore it. With the industry-approved training to employ rapid response, the utmost professionalism, cutting-edge technology and open communication, we strive to restore not only the home, but the customer's peach of mind, as well.
The first 48 hours after a fire damage can make the difference between restoring versus replacing your property and personal belongings. SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County professionals can help prevent fire damage from creating long-term problems. Our professionals provide timely response with mitigation services ranging from fire, smoke and soot removal to contents claims inventory and document restoration. these service help ensure your property, belongings and memories are restored to preloss condition when possible,
Clean Homes Sell Faster
Person that just bought a home
It is a fact: A clean, fresh smelling home sells faster. Unfortunately, not all homes are maintained in the same way. Nearly all realtors are faced, at some point, with a difficult listing to show.
Your sellers may have trouble spots to address before you list or schedule a home inspection. The clients may choose to handle these issues themselves to avoid filing an insurance claim for the damage because it may not be covered by their policy and can affect the home's CLUE report. CLUE (Comprehensive Loss Underwriting Exchange) is a database which records reported loss and damage information, and it is utilized by more that 80% of insurance companies. Unfavorable CLUE reports can lead to increased premiums and policy renewal issues to property owners.
Whether the problem is a water stain on a hardwood floor or a mildew smell in the basement, reassure your clients that SERVPRO can get their home in top show condition and ready to sell.
Veteran realtors encourage clients to keep their homes in top condition for very important reasons:
- Increased market value
- Shortened list to sale conversion times
- Enhanced reputation for quality listings and quick sales.
SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County offers a variety of services to help revive your listings to op show condition:
- Carpet, Upholstery, Drapery and Blind Cleaning
- Ceiling, Wall and Hard Floor Cleaning
- Mold Mitigation and Remediation.
Call us today!
Why Choose Us
lady concerned after a water loss
If you’re in need of disaster repair SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County team is here to help. Each and every one of our professionals are highly trained in property restoration to better serve our community. From initial and ongoing corporate training to regular e-training and continuing education classes, you can trust that your SERVPRO Professionals have the knowledge and experience to handle your disaster, no matter the size.
The Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) is the governing body that sets the standards for the cleaning and restoration industries. All members of the SERVPRO team study IICRC standards and best practices to know how to restore damaged properties correctly. The certifications include:
Applied Microbial Remediation Technician (AMRT): This course covers mold and sewage remediation techniques and how to perform the proper procedures in the field to keep all workers and occupants safe.
Applied Structural Drying Technician (ASD): Through this training, technicians learn how to dry water-damaged structures safely and efficiently.
Carpet Cleaning Technician (CCT): This course covers pre-inspection, fabric identification, cleaning chemicals and equipment, and proper cleaning techniques.
Fire and Smoke Restoration Technician (FSRT): Through this training, technicians learn about smoke and fire damage, job planning, equipment, odor concepts, and practical cleaning procedures in fire and smoke settings.
Odor Control Technician (OCT): This course covers odor control, odor causes, and deodorization techniques.
Upholstery and Fabric Cleaning Technician (UFT): Throughout this training, technicians go over fiber identifications and upholstery cleaning methods.
Water Damage Restoration Technician (WRT): During this course, trainees learn about the concepts of water damage, its effects in different settings, and procedures to deal with water losses, sewer backflows, and contamination.
At SERVPRO, we understand that having the knowledge and training to handle an array of damages and disasters is crucial to meeting and exceeding the needs of our customers when the restoration is required. Our extensive SERVPRO training program includes the following:
- IICRC Training
- Employee Certification Training: This voluntary, self-paced program allows our professionals to learn more about crew training, fire restoration, carpet and upholstery cleaning, and mold mitigation.
- Initial Franchise Training: This 15-day hands-on course at our training facility allows new franchise owners to master topics such as fire restoration and mold mitigation.
- e-Learnings: Through this web-based training, team members can stay up-to-date on industry standards and professional quality.
- Continuing Education Classes: These programs are designed for insurance agents, adjusters, real estate professionals, and franchise staff to learn more about emergency mitigation.
As your Milwaukee County disaster repair professionals, you can trust that we have the equipment and personnel to handle your cleanup and restoration needs. Often people will try to tackle their flood, mold, or fire issues without realizing that they will most likely do more harm than good without the appropriate technology and safety procedures. When you work with SERVPRO, you can trust that our services will restore your damaged property, while also keeping you, your family, and your belongings safe. Regardless of the cause or source, our team can handle any sized disaster.
Since 1967, SERVPRO has been changing the restoration and mitigation industry. To better serve our customers, SERVPRO created the National Training Center in 1992 to teach restoration and mitigation skills to franchise owners and insurance industry employees. Through professional training, our team is uniquely positioned and qualified to help when disaster strikes. Not only is our team trained in the most extensive performance guidelines in the industry, but we're also the ones who created them.
As a homeowner, having a certified team completing your damage restoration ensures that your home is safe and sound for you and your family. From your carpet to your ceiling and everywhere in between, our team has the expertise and tools so that you don’t have to worry about safety when playing with the kids on your living room carpet or preparing dinner on your kitchen counters. Whether it’s mold or fire that affects your home, our team will restore each and every piece to its pre-damage glory.
To learn more about our services, training, certifications, or processes, contact your Southeastern Milwaukee County disaster restoration professionals today!