Recent Why SERVPRO Posts
What Causes Mold Odor?
Mold hiding inside a wall in a Hamilton,GA building
The musty odor characteristic of mold is caused by microbial volatile organic compounds. Just because mold is growing does not mean that mycotoxin is present. Learn about the differences between MVOCs, spores, and mycotoxins and the origin of a moldy odor in a building in Hamilton Mill, GA.
What Are MVOCs?
MVOCs are gaseous compounds produced by the metabolism of fungi during the active growth cycle. The most common MVOCs include:
- Butanoic acid
- Sulphur and nitrogen compounds
Industrial hygienists can sample and test MVOC levels. This analysis will determine which types of microbes are growing in a building.
Are MVOCs the Same as Spores?
MVOCs are chemicals and are not the same as mold spores. Spores are not the cause of musty odor. Mold spores can:
- Spread to damp surfaces with food sources
- Withstand conditions hostile to mold growth
- Range in size from three to 40 microns
Spores may spread more readily when dry. HEPA air filtration devices can filter spores out of interior air.
Are MVOCs the Same as Mycotoxin?
Mycotoxins are another product of fungal metabolism, but these substances are not the same as MVOCs. Whereas MVOCs are off-gases that are not desirable, but should not be seriously harmful, mycotoxins should be eliminated. There are several common types of mycotoxins:
- Ergot alkaloids
- Ochratoxin A
Not every type of mold produces mycotoxins. The only way to determine whether a fungus growing in a structure is emitting these toxins is to have professional testing done.
If you smell a moldy odor in a building, look around for visible fungal growth. Do not puncture walls or surfaces to find hidden colonies, as this can release spores or mycotoxin into the air and cause mold to spread. To eliminate the presence of fungus, contact a mold remediation company in Hamilton Mill, GA.
What To Expect From Black Water Restoration Professionals
Flooded Buford,GA home
Black water is a common cause of some of the most serious water damage. This is because the water has come into contact with fecal matter and could be full of dangerous bacteria and disease. When that water gets into your home, anything that comes into contact with it is contaminated. Fortunately, home restoration professionals in Buford, GA, have the tools and training to remove biohazardous materials. When your home is affected by flooding, contact a professional as soon as possible to minimize the long-term results of the contamination.
Protective Clothing and Gear
Professionals who handle water damage restoration work may arrive wearing personal protective equipment to protect themselves and to decrease the chances that materials are moved out of the area that has already been affected. Some of this protective gear may include the following:
- Waterproof coveralls
- Heavy, waterproof boots
- Eye protection
- Face masks
Workers will often remove the gear as they leave the affected area so that contaminants aren’t spread.
Assessments Based on Training and Experience
When the technicians arrive, they'll complete an assessment of the damage to determine the best restoration plan. For example, the technicians need to make sure it's safe to enter the water. Many of the storms and disasters that cause flooding also affect electric or natural gas systems in the home.
Specialized Equipment and Cleaning Methods
Once the action plan is in place and safety is established, restoration professionals remove excess water as well as all contaminants, including sewage. Any porous building materials, such as drywall, are also removed. With the flood water out of the way, specialized supplies, such as equipment and cleansers, are used to thoroughly sanitize your home. Steps are taken to be sure other areas of the home aren't affected.
Focus on Safety
Finally, emergency restoration professionals in Buford, GA, should set up heavy-duty fans and dehumidifiers to thoroughly dry the area. Once dry, you should be allowed to move back in.
The presence of black water in your home can complicate the cleaning and recovery process. A top priority should be preventing the spread of contamination and disease by hiring a professional water damage cleanup crew.
3 Steps To Take After a Fire Damages Your Business
Large fire loss in a Suwanee,GA facility
Fire Restoration Process
After your business in Suwanee, GA, has been damaged by fire, you may feel overwhelmed about what to do next. However, you can take several steps to make the fire restoration process easier.
1. Review Your Insurance Policy
Check your insurance policy to get an idea about what costs will be covered by fire insurance. While many insurance policies for businesses include fire damage, some policies offer more coverage than others. Once you are aware of what your insurance will cover, you can have a better idea of what projects to tackle first and how to make appropriate claims.
2. Be Mindful When Cleaning
As you start to clean up your business, it’s helpful to know what you should and should not try to clean. Fire restoration usually involves clearing a building of soot, and touching damaged items could result in deterioration. Additionally, it is generally wise to wear protective clothing to keep yourself safe as you enter your building. If you’re uncertain whether you should remove an item or if you should try to clean it, it’s often best to wait for professional help.
3. Start the Restoration Process Quickly
Although you want to make certain you aren’t putting yourself at risk as you start cleaning, you may not have to put the restoration process on hold. After checking with your insurance agent, you may receive permission to repair some issues before your insurance company sends out an adjuster to document the damage. Save receipts and take photos to provide proof of the costs of restoration to your insurance company.
Once you know the steps to take after your business is affected by a fire, you can start the process of fire restoration. Consider working with fire damage restoration experts who can help with smoke cleaning, sanitization and more.