Recent Posts

Essential Tips for Preventing Mold in Humid Climates: Keep Your Home Mold-Free!

5/17/2023 (Permalink)

drywall damage from mold Mold can grow in humid climates and present challenges in your home or business.

Living in a humid climate can present challenges, and one of the most common issues homeowners face is mold growth. Mold thrives in damp environments, making humid regions particularly susceptible to this pesky and potentially harmful fungus. However, with the right knowledge and preventive measures, you can effectively prevent mold growth in humid climates and keep your home safe and healthy.

Mold is a type of fungus that can grow indoors and outdoors. It reproduces through spores that are carried through the air and can easily find their way into your home. Once inside, mold can grow on various surfaces, including walls, ceilings, floors, carpets, and even furniture. Mold growth is not only unsightly, but it can also cause health issues such as respiratory problems, allergies, and skin irritation.

So, how can you prevent mold in humid climates? Here are some essential tips to keep your home mold-free:

Control Indoor Humidity

The key to preventing mold in humid climates is to control the indoor humidity levels. Invest in a good quality hygrometer to measure the humidity levels in your home. Ideally, indoor humidity should be kept below 50%. If the humidity levels are high, use dehumidifiers to lower the moisture levels in your home. Make sure to empty and clean the dehumidifier regularly to prevent mold growth within the unit.

Improve Ventilation

Proper ventilation is crucial in preventing mold growth. Make sure your home is well-ventilated by using exhaust fans in bathrooms, kitchens, and laundry rooms. Ensure that your clothes dryer is properly vented to the outside to prevent excess moisture from accumulating indoors. Additionally, open windows and doors to allow fresh air to circulate and reduce humidity levels.

Fix Leaks

Any leaks in your home can quickly lead to mold growth. Regularly check for leaks in pipes, roofs, and windows and promptly fix them to prevent moisture from seeping into your home. If you notice any signs of water damage, such as stains or musty odors, address the issue immediately to prevent mold from taking hold.

Insulate and Seal Your Home

Proper insulation and sealing can prevent moisture from entering your home, helping to keep mold at bay. Insulate your walls, floors, and ceilings, and seal any gaps or cracks in doors, windows, and walls. This will not only help prevent mold growth but also make your home more energy-efficient.

Keep Your Home Clean and Dry

Regular cleaning and maintenance are essential in preventing mold growth. Clean up spills and water leaks immediately, and dry any wet areas promptly. Make sure to clean your home regularly, including carpets, upholstery, and other surfaces, using mold-inhibiting cleaners. Pay special attention to areas that are prone to moisture, such as bathrooms and kitchens.

Avoid Overwatering Indoor Plants

Indoor plants can add beauty to your home, but they can also contribute to mold growth if overwatered. Avoid overwatering your indoor plants and make sure they are well-drained. Use pots with drainage holes and place saucers underneath to catch excess water. Wipe up any spills or standing water promptly.

Use Mold-Resistant Building Materials

When building or renovating your home, consider using mold-resistant building materials. These materials are designed to inhibit mold growth and can be used in areas that are prone to moisture, such as bathrooms and basements. Examples of mold-resistant materials include mold-resistant drywall, paint, and insulation.

Keep Outdoor Areas Well-Maintained

The exterior of your home can also contribute to mold growth indoors. Keep outdoor areas well-maintained by trimming back trees and shrubs away from your home to allow for proper airflow. Clean your gutters regularly to prevent water damage.

Relief for Burns. A Guide to Basic First Aid for Burn Injury.

4/28/2023 (Permalink)

first aid burn Seeking immediate medical attention to help reduce burn and infection.

Burns are one of the most common injuries that people can sustain, both at home and at work. They can be caused by a variety of things, including hot liquids, flames, chemicals, and electricity. While some burns are minor and can be treated at home, others require immediate medical attention. In this blog post, we’ll discuss basic first aid for burns that you can use to help relieve pain and promote healing.

Types of Burns

Before we dive into first aid for burns, it’s important to understand the different types of burns. There are three types of burns:

First-degree burns: These are the mildest type of burns and only affect the outer layer of skin. They’re usually red, painful, and can be treated at home.

Second-degree burns: These affect both the outer and underlying layer of skin. They’re usually red, swollen, and painful. Blisters may also form.

Third-degree burns: These are the most severe type of burns and affect all layers of skin. They can be white or black in color, and the skin may appear leathery or charred. Third-degree burns require immediate medical attention.

First Aid for Burns

For first-degree burns, you can usually treat them at home using the following steps:

Cool the burn: Run cool (not cold) water over the burn for at least 10 minutes to help relieve pain and reduce swelling.

Cover the burn: Apply a sterile gauze bandage or a clean cloth to the burn to help keep it clean and reduce the risk of infection.

Take over-the-counter pain medication: If the burn is painful, take an over-the-counter pain medication like ibuprofen or acetaminophen.

Avoid breaking any blisters: If the burn has formed blisters, do not break them. This can increase the risk of infection.

Keep the burn clean: Change the bandage at least once a day and keep the burn clean.

While first-degree burns can usually be treated at home, second-degree and third-degree burns require medical attention. You should seek medical attention if the burn is larger than three inches in diameter, is on your face, hands, feet, or genitals. The burn is deep and white or black in color, or the burn is caused by electricity, chemicals, or radiation.

Burns can be painful and require prompt attention to avoid further damage or infection. By following these basic first aid steps for burns, you can help relieve pain and promote healing. Remember, if you’re unsure about the severity of a burn, it’s always best to seek medical attention.

How to prevent pipe breaks from happening

3/4/2023 (Permalink)

compression faucet Preparing for a freeze can help prevent water damage to your home or business.

Frozen pipes are a common issue that homeowners face during cold weather months. When water freezes in your home's plumbing, it can cause serious damage to your property and lead to expensive repairs. If you're looking for ways to prevent frozen water pipe breakage from occurring in your home or business as winter breaks, read below!

Pipe breaks are serious

Water damage from frozen pipes is a serious issue and can happen to anyone. The cost of repairing the damage can be expensive, but there are some things you can do to prevent it.

If you live in an area where freezing temperatures are common, winterizing your home's plumbing system is essential for avoiding costly repairs or replacement later on. A little preparation now will save time and money down the road when those freezing temperatures arrive again next year!

How to tell if you have frozen pipes.

If you think your pipes are frozen, there are some things you can do to check. First, look at the outside of your pipes. If they're covered in ice, chances are good that they've been frozen and need attention.

Secondly, check to see if your water flow is smooth or slow--if it's flowing smoothly, then there isn't anything wrong with your pipes.

Prevent frozen water pipe breakage.

You can prevent frozen water pipe breakage by draining the pipes before freezing temperatures arrive. You can also insulate pipes in unheated areas of your home, such as attics and crawl spaces.

Drain faucets at least once a year to keep them from freezing during cold weather. Make sure all other drains are clear of debris as well, especially around fixtures like washing machines or dishwashers that may have drainage hoses attached to them.

Frost proof faucet

To prevent your outdoor faucet from freezing, install a frost-proof outdoor faucet. These special faucets have an internal valve that opens when the temperature drops below freezing, allowing water to drain from the pipe and preventing it from freezing. Frost-proof outdoor faucets are available at home improvement stores and can be installed by anyone with basic plumbing skills.

There are several ways that you can prevent frozen water pipe breakage from occurring in your home.

Frozen water pipe breaks can cause a serious issue for anyone. There are several ways that you can prevent frozen pipe breakage from occurring in your home, including draining the pipes before freezing temperatures arrive and installing a frost-proof outdoor faucet. If you have any questions about how to take care of frozen pipes or need professional assistance with this issue, contact us today!

How to Prepare for a Hurricane

2/12/2023 (Permalink)

Home damaged after a hurricane. Louisiana has seen over 50 hurricanes since the 1930s. This is how you prepare your home and family for a hurricane.

Hurricanes are very powerful, destructive storms that can bring high winds and heavy rainfall. Hurricanes form in the Atlantic Ocean, Caribbean Sea, or Gulf of Mexico and then move toward land. In the United States, hurricanes are most likely to hit Florida, Louisiana, and Texas. In fact, Louisiana has seen over 50 hurricanes since the 1930s. This is how you prepare your home and family for a hurricane.

What is the difference between a hurricane watch and a hurricane warning?

A hurricane watch means a hurricane is possible in the next 48 hours. In these cases, you should be prepared to either shelter in place or evacuate, but it is very possible that the storm will die down before it reaches you.

A warning means that a hurricane is expected in the next 24 hours. Hurricane warnings are issued by the National Weather Service and they signal that immediate action needs to be taken in order to protect yourself and your family.

Be prepared before the storm

To be prepared for a hurricane, you should:

  • Keep a list of emergency phone numbers nearby.
  • Have a plan for where to go if you have to evacuate.
  • Have an evacuation kit ready to go with everything from food, water, and any medications.

Pack emergency supplies

One of the most important steps to take in preparation for a storm is to pack an emergency kit. You can store your emergency kit in a backpack or plastic storage bin, but be sure it's watertight and easy to carry if you need to evacuate.

Pack supplies for at least two weeks—and don't forget about pets! Keep enough food, water, and medicine on hand so that everyone in your household for at least 72 hours.

Remember to store your emergency kit in an easy-to-access location!

Know evacuation routes and have a plan for evacuation

Prepare for the need to evacuate the area. The best way to ensure that you can evacuate quickly is to know the route you'll take and how long it will take. If you are in a coastal area, have a plan for where you will go if the storm requires an evacuation.

Prepare your car

Most people's form of evacuation relies on their vehicles. Before the hurricane, it is important to prepare your car.

  • Make sure you have a full tank of gas.
  • Have a spare tire and jack.
  • Have a cell phone charger in your car.
  • Keep an emergency kit in your car.
  • Move your car into a garage or under cover.

Prepare to shelter in place

In some cases, it might not be safer to shelter in place than it is to evacuate. Hurricanes are extremely dangerous for everyone, but especially for those who venture outdoors. If you need to shelter in place, remember to stay away from windows and doors and stay away from trees, power lines, and flood waters.

Prepare your home

To minimize the risks of damage to your home during a hurricane, there are several things you can do to prepare your home.

  • Shut off utilities such as electricity, gas, and water.
  • Remove trees limbs and other debris from your yard that could cause damage to your home.
  • Make sure your home is secure and ready for flooding if necessary: cover windows and doors, place sandbags in front of entry points to your home, and make sure outdoor furniture has been moved somewhere safe.

The best way to keep your family and home safe from a hurricane is to be prepared. If you do not have an emergency plan in place already, it is important that you create one before the next hurricane unexpectedly hits. Remember, if your home or business suffers from damage due to a hurricane, our SERVPRO of Lafayette team can help with all the flood damage cleanup and restoration. 

How To Inspect a Fireplace

12/7/2022 (Permalink)

Fireplace in a home. Fire and smoke damaged furniture in a family home. Schedule a chimney inspection with a professional.

If you have a fireplace in your home, it is important to inspect it regularly. A chimney inspection will help you maintain the safety and effectiveness of your fireplace. Here’s how:

Inspect the Inside of Your Fireplace

First, inspect the hearth (the bottom surface where logs rest) and firebox (the area between them). If they're damaged or missing, they must be replaced before using your fireplace again.

Then, check for damage to stove pipe vents—they should not leak smoke from their joints when air pressure changes during operation.

Clean Out Ashes

It's important to remove ashes from your fireplace before they get too hot. To do so, you'll need to use a fireplace tool, which will help you scoop out any remaining ashes in the hearth.

If you don't have a fireplace tool, use a broom or dustpan instead. You should also check your chimney for blockages regularly (every two weeks) and remove them as needed: sticks, leaves, and other debris can get stuck in the flue and cause damage over time if left unchecked.

It's not recommended that vacuums be used on fireplaces because they can cause sparks which could lead to an accident with potentially serious consequences!

Check for Clearance Issues

Measure the distance between the fireplace wall and the floor. If there are less than 18 inches of clearance, you should consider moving your furniture or furnishings away from the fireplace to create more space. Then, measure the distance between the fireplace wall and any combustible materials such as curtains or hanging rugs that could catch fire if they come in contact with your flames. If there isn't at least 12 inches of clearance, move these objects away from where they might touch hot embers after you've burned a fire in your fireplace. You can also opt for safer alternatives—like vinyl window treatments—to help protect yourself against fires while still enjoying all of those beautiful natural light and heat benefits offered by a roaring fire!

Check for Creosote Buildup

Creosote is a by-product of combustion, so if you're properly burning your fireplace, it should be a rare sight. However, creosote can build up in the chimney over time and cause serious problems. If left unchecked, creosote can ignite and start a chimney fire; this is especially dangerous during the winter months when the temperature outside is below freezing.

If you think that there might be some buildup on the inside of your chimney (it's hard to tell without looking), take caution before lighting your next fire.

Creosote can also cause damage to other components of your fireplace system including flues and damper systems.

Check the Outside of Your Fireplace

Once you've inspected the inside of your fireplace, it's time to turn your attention to the outside. The first thing you should do is check for cracks in the mortar and bricks. If any are found, these need to be repaired before you can use your fireplace again. 

Next, look at the flue and see if there are any cracks or holes that need attention.

Schedule a Chimney Inspection with a Professional

If you want to make sure your fireplace is working safely and efficiently, schedule a chimney inspection with a professional. Chimney sweeps are specially trained and experienced in the ins and outs of fireplaces, and they can be an invaluable resource when it comes to getting the most out of your fireplace. You should schedule an inspection every year if possible; if not possible due to lack of funds then at least once every five years would be ideal as well.

As you can see, chimney cleaning is an important part of fireplace maintenance. If you want your fireplace to stay safe and effective, it is important to regularly inspect it and schedule chimney cleanings.

If you want to keep your fireplace safe and functional, it is important to regularly inspect the outside of it. This will help you identify any issues before they become serious problems that require costly repairs and replacements. Give SERVPRO of Lafayette a call if you experience a fire in your Lafayette, LA home!

Water is Leaking Through My Light Fixture! What Should I Do?

11/15/2022 (Permalink)

Water coming out light fixture If your water is leaking through a light fixture, act quickly.

Why Water Is Leaking Through My Light Fixture?

Water leaking through a light fixture is a common problem in homes that have plumbing leaks, which can occur either under or behind the sink, around the bathtub, or anywhere where water can collect. When it happens, it's important to act quickly to prevent further damage. This article will help you understand why water is leaking through your light fixture and what you can do about it.

If your water is leaking through a light fixture, there are several things you should do immediately. This is a serious problem. Do not touch the light fixture or any electrical equipment in the area. Call an electrician right away to fix it for you. If you don’t know where to find an electrician, look online or ask friends and family members if they can recommend somebody. Do not try to fix this by yourself!

Turn Off the Water and Electricity 

This should be obvious, but it's worth stating. Turning off the water will prevent further damage if you don't know where the leak is coming from yet. If you can't turn off your pipes or faucet, use a wet/dry vacuum to clean up as much water as possible before calling a professional for help.

Clean Up the Mess

If you have a wet/dry vacuum, use it to suck up any water that is on the floor. If this is impossible to do due to the leak being too big or your vacuum not being strong enough, then use a towel or other absorbent material (like an old t-shirt) and soak up as much water as possible.

Monitor the Situation

To monitor the situation, you'll need to keep an eye on the room temperature and humidity levels. If they rise above normal levels and/or you notice a musty odor, it's possible that mold has begun to grow in your home. If this happens, call a specialist right away! It's important not to wait until the damage is too severe before seeking out help—a professional can help you fix any problems before they become too severe.

Respond Quickly

Water damage in your home can be a big problem, but it's important to respond quickly. You should never ignore water leaks, as they can cause serious problems if left unattended for a long time. The longer the water sits, the more damage it does.

If you notice any water leaking in your house or building, there are several steps you can take to make sure that this doesn’t cause long-term damage:

Turn off the source of the leak ASAP: Whether it’s a burst pipe or faulty shower head, turn off whatever is causing the leak immediately by shutting off its valve under sink or behind toilet tank.

Check for signs of mold growth: Mold spores need warmth and moisture to grow so if you see soggy drywall or other materials that were once dry becoming damp and moldy (moldy), then there's probably been some sort of water intrusion somewhere in that area recently - usually through porous materials like wood paneling or carpeting which absorb liquid instead of repelling it outward like rubberized coatings do on bathroom walls!

We hope that this article has helped you figure out what to do if water is leaking through your light fixture. If you’re concerned about water damage in your home, it’s important to respond quickly. That way, you can avoid issues like mold growth and costly repairs!

When you have a water leak in your home, SERVPRO of Lafayette is here to help you get your Baton Rouge, LA home back to normal! 

Do I Need Fire Insurance For My Building?

10/16/2022 (Permalink)

Visible damage to a commercial building following a structure fire If your business is located in an area with high fire risk, you should consider purchasing fire insurance.

Protecting Your Business Against Fires

You may not think about fire insurance, but it's important for your business. Fires can cause significant damage to a building and pose a risk to the safety of your employees and customers. While you have many options when it comes to protecting your business against fires, one of the most basic choices is whether or not you should get fire insurance coverage. The answer depends on several factors including how old your building is, where it's located and what kind of business you operate. In this article, we'll look at some common questions about fire insurance so that you can make an informed decision about whether or not this type of coverage makes sense for your situation.

Fires Destroy More Than Just Things

Fires can be devastating. Not only do they destroy valuables, but they also have the power to consume or destroy all a business's hard work and investment. If your business is located in an area with high fire risk, you should consider purchasing fire insurance.

The cost of rebuilding is one important factor to consider when deciding whether or not to purchase fire insurance. The amount of money it will take to rebuild your building depends on many factors including what type of structure you had before, how much damage there was during the fire, and whether or not there were any injuries sustained as a result of said fire.

Sometimes Fire Insurance is Required

Fire insurance is not required by law, but it's a good idea for many businesses. If your business is financing its building or leasing it to tenants, the bank might require fire insurance as a condition of its loan.

Fire Insurance Coverage

Fire insurance can help protect your business from the financial impact of both property and business interruption losses. Property insurance will cover the value of goods damaged or destroyed in a fire, and business interruption insurance will pay for lost income if you are forced to close down temporarily due to a catastrophic event such as a fire. Both types of coverage can be purchased separately or together, depending on your needs and budget.

In addition to protecting your building and its contents, fire insurance can also cover computer equipment that may be damaged by smoke inhalation or water seepage into electrical equipment during an emergency response effort by firefighters.

Fire insurance can help protect your investment and save money in the event of an unexpected fire in the future. It’s a good idea for any business, but it is especially important for businesses that have inventory or equipment. A fire can be devastating to these types of businesses and significantly impact their ability to operate. If you suffer damage from a fire, your insurance policy will pay for repairs or replacement costs up to the limits listed on your policy.

Fire insurance is a great way to protect your business and investment, even while you are away from your building. There are many other types of insurance and property policies that can help protect against fire, so it's important to talk with an insurance agent before deciding on which policy works best.

When your Baton Rouge business catches on fire, Give SERVPRO of Lafayette a call!

4 Easy Steps To Operate a Fire Extinguisher

8/29/2022 (Permalink)

Fire extinguisher instruction labels set. Instruction extinguisher and protection of fire with extinguisher illustration P.A.S.S Technique

Proper Operation Techniques Can Be Learned In Just A Few Moments

Fires spring up suddenly in homes every day. A couple of inexpensive and easy-to-use tools can protect your family from the damaging effects of fire and reduce the damage to your property. Fire alarms should be installed throughout your home in Lafayette, LA, and they should be tested a couple of times a year to ensure they are working properly. A fire extinguisher or two should also be in every home. Just as importantly, every person in the home 10 years or older should know how to use the device.

1. Pull the pin - Nearly every fire extinguisher will be equipped with a pin or tamper seal to make certain the device does not prematurely discharge. The first order of business is to pull the pin or break the tamper seal.

2. Aim the extinguisher - You do not want to aim the device at the top of the flames. Rather you want to aim low at the fire's base. This will be the most effective way to put the fire out quickly and limit fire damage to your home. Some models have a hose while others have a short nozzle.

3. Squeeze the trigger - Now you are ready to discharge the contents of the extinguisher. Just squeeze the handle and the extinguishing agents will come rushing out.

4. Sweep the area - While the contents are being discharged, be sure to sweep across the base of the fire, moving from side to side. This is the most effective motion whether you are dealing with a kitchen fire or another type of blaze.
Learning how to properly use a fire extinguisher strengthens your household's response to a fire. Developing a relationship with a fire mitigation team in your area is also a good idea. This allows you to call for restoration help if you do experience a fire in your home.

3 Steps for Cleaning Dryer Lint

8/20/2022 (Permalink)

Clean the lint screen of your dryer Clean the lint screen of your dryer

Three Steps To Avoid Calling a Fire Restoration Company

Did you know that your clothes dryer can be a cause of a home lint fire? According to the United States Fire Administration, there are about 2,900 clothes dryer fires reported each year. The USFA also states that almost 35% of those fires could have been prevented if the dryer had been cleaned. Ensure that your Lafayette, LA, home doesn’t suffer the devastating effects of fire damage by cleaning your dryer regularly. Here are three steps to follow to avoid needing to call a fire restoration company.

1. Clean the Screen
The first part to clean is the lint screen. Every clothes dryer has a lint screen located on top or inside the bottom of the door. There are three ways to remove lint from the screen:

  • Run your fingers gently across the screen
  • Wipe a used dryer sheet on the screen
  • Use a vacuum brush attachment

It’s important to clean the lint screen before each new load to prevent a lint fire. If you use dryer sheets, remove the screen every month and run it under water to remove any residue.

2. Deep Clean the Vents
In addition to cleaning the screen, it’s necessary to deep-clean the vents at least once a year. Lint can get trapped and accumulate inside the vent, which leads to inefficient drying and possible combustion. Fortunately, cleaning the vent isn’t difficult.
First, unplug the dryer and shut off the power to the machine. Next, move the dryer away from the wall and remove the hose. Third, gently wipe the interior or put a vacuum attachment inside to pull out the lint. Finally, use a dryer cleaning kit and follow the instructions to clean the wall vent.

3. Clean the Exterior and Interior
Cleaning the outside and inside of the appliance prevents a dryer fire. Remove the back panel of your dryer with a screwdriver and gently wipe all areas with a soft cloth. Check inside as well to remove any lint in the drum.
Removing lint from the screen before each load and thoroughly cleaning the vents and dryer can prevent a lint fire.

How to Clean a Moldy Shower

8/15/2022 (Permalink)

Tiles of a bathroom covered with black spots of mold Mold growth on shower

Residential bathrooms are one of the most common places to find mold. The warm, wet, humid environment creates a perfect fungal breeding ground. Shower mold is especially common due to the excessive moisture that tends to get left behind. Follow the steps below if your shower in Lafayette, LA, is affected by unwanted mold growth.

Cleaning Shower Mold

Black mold is a common occurrence for many showers, so there are plenty of tried and true cleaning methods available. Here's one of the most effective techniques:

  • Create a safe, non-toxic mold cleaning solution using equal parts water and white vinegar. Pour this mixture into a clean spray bottle.
  • Mist down the moldy areas with the cleaning solution. Create a generous, even layer, but make sure you don't oversaturate the area. If puddles are forming in the shower basin, you're using too much solution. Let sit for 5-10 minutes.
  • Use a clean cloth to wipe down the solution. The mold should easily come off with it. You may need to use multiple cleaning rags, depending on how large the affected area is.
  • If some mold still remains, use a kitchen sponge or scrub brush to scrub it off. Mold growing in the shower grout or caulking can be removed using a spare toothbrush.
    Completely dry the area using a clean rag or cloth. Make sure you remove all of the excess moisture to prevent further mold growth.

Preventing Bathroom Mold
Keeping your bathroom clean and dry is the best way to prevent mold growth. Prevent condensation from building up by opening a window or cracking the bathroom door open next time you shower. After each shower, make sure you wipe down the shower tiles and tub edge (when applicable). Mop up any puddles that are left on the floor. Spread the shower curtain out to help aid in the drying process.
Shower mold is extremely common, but it's also relatively easy to remedy using the above technique. If you find that your mold situation has spread out of your control, or the method above isn't working for you, you need to contact mold remediation experts immediately.