Ways to keep your house cool this summer
In warmer months, it's tempting to crank the AC or plant yourself in front of the nearest fan. But these aren't the only tricks to keeping cool. It turns out there are plenty of ways to cool down your home from the heat without racking up your electric bill.
Keep your blinds closed. Did you know that up to 30 percent of unwanted heat comes from your windows? Better yet, invest in blackout curtains. Both will help keep the sunlight from coming in. Closing off unused rooms will prevent cool air from permeating these areas during the hottest part of the day keeping the cooler air in the places you are utilizing. Use a fan instead of turning on the A.C. Filling a mixing bowl with ice or something equally cold, like an ice pack, and position it at an angle in front of a large fan so the air whips off the ice in an extra-chilled is another great way to keep cool air flowing throughout your home. Also be sure to set your ceiling fans to rotate counter-clockwise. You may not realize that your ceiling fan needs to be adjusted seasonally. Setting your fans to run counter-clockwise in the summer at a higher speed, the airflow will create a wind-chill breeze effect that will make you feel cooler. Turn on your bathroom fans or the exhaust fan in your kitchen too.
Ditch the incandescent lights.Incandescent bulbs waste about 90 percent of their energy in the heat they emit. It will make a small difference in cooling your home while also lowering your electric bill. Using your oven or stove in the summer will definitely make your house hotter. If it already feels like 100 degrees in your home, the last thing you want to do is turn on a 400-degree oven.Grill out your meals instead. This really is the best season for it!
And don’t forget to focus on the temperature in your body, not the house.Cool drinks and applying a cold cloth to strong-pulsed areas, like your neck and wrists, will keep you cool from the inside out.
Here at SERVPRO of North Cabarrus County & China Grove, we want to make sure that your home is running efficiently. And should you need any of our 24 hour, seven day a week services, don’t hesitate to give us a call. We’re always “Here To Help!”
Recent Residential Kitchen Fire
Stove top fires are very common in most homes. They can start out small, but can quickly get out of control. It can start off by a small distraction while you are preparing dinner. You have something on the stove; you defer your attention to something else and possibly leave the room for a second only to walk back to a stovetop fire. Our customer experienced just that while making dinner one night. Fortunately, the homeowners were properly prepared with a fire extinguisher in their kitchen and were able to get this kitchen fire under control quickly. But immediately after, they were left with a terrible mess. That’s when SERVPRO of North Cabarrus County & China Grove was called in to assist with the cleanup. Although not much structural damage occurred, there was significant smoke damage throughout the home.
Our technicians worked with the homeowner and their family to ensure that all rooms were cleaned to SERVPRO and industry standards. All of the contents within each of these rooms were individually, hand cleaned by our amazing crew. The homeowners were so pleased when we were able to clean some of their more sentimental items.
When you have fire or smoke damage in your home or office, be sure to call the professionals at SERVPRO of North Cabarrus County & China Grove at (704) 939-1944.
Where should I look for mold?
You know that mold is dirty but it can be dangerous. Mold is a type of fungus that sprouts from microscopic spores floating in the air. When clusters of mold spores grow on surfaces, they start to reproduce and become visible to the human eye. All homes have the key ingredients needed for mold growth: the presence of mold spores, a surface for it to grow on, oxygen, warmth, and darkness. When you add moisture, whether from a water leak, stagnant water, or high levels of humidity, into the mix, that’s where mold problems begin. Knowing where mold is commonly found in your home can help you prevent it and treat it.
The most common places for mold growth are:• Basements or cellars that have been flooded• Underneath kitchen and bathroom sinks• Underneath or behind refrigerators• Behind walls that also house plumbing• Stacks of damp or wet newspaper or cardboard boxes• Around air-conditioning units• Wallboard or around windows that leak• Under carpeting that may have become wet.
Mold growth is of course not limited to these places; however there is a common principle that links all of these environments together: moisture. So if you should find mold lurking in anywhere in your home, call the professionals at SERVPRO of North Cabarrus County & China Grove to come take a look. Our team specializes in mold remediation and it’s our job to ensure we leave your home “Like it never even happened.”
Summer Grilling Safety Tips
It is that time of year when the seasons are changing, the weather is getting warmer and summer break is upon us. As the weather gets warmer, more and more people use outdoor grills to prepare their meals. And the incidents of grill-caused fires go up. According to the National Fire Protection Association, outdoor grilling causes an average of 8,900 home fires each year. The team at SERVPRO of North Cabarrus County & China Grove want you and your family to be safe and avoid any fire damage to you home or property. Before you decide to host your first cook-out, be sure to read over these helpful grilling safety tips before you throw your steaks on the grill.
Always use your grill outside and away from any structures or obstructions. This includes any low hanging tree branches as well. Be sure to always keep your grill clean. Grease and fat can build up on the grilling racks as well as the tray below the grill. Before this season’s first barbecue, check for propane leaks on your gas grill. Check the gas hose for leaks by applying a light soap and water solution to the hose and then turning on the gas. If there is a propane leak, the solution will bubble. And be sure to check for leaks before every use. Always wait to re-light if the flame is to go out. A good rule of thumb is waiting 5 minutes. Most importantly, be aware and take care around the grill; Never leave the grill unattended, never wear lose clothing, do not let kids or pets play near the grill, and never move the grill while it is in use or at least an hour after use while it is still hot.
Grilling season is all about fun times. Be sure to be safe during your next cook-out.
Plan ahead this spring for hurricane season this summer.
Summer is almost here. That means so is Hurricane season!
Summer is the season that most people look forward to. School is out, the sun is shining, and for most people, it is a time for vacations and relaxation. But did you know it is also hurricane season. Yes! Hurricane season in North Carolina is typically from June through September. This is the time when these tropical cyclones form over the ocean and make their way inland. Heavy winds and thunderstorms are just the beginning of the extreme weather these storms bring.
So what have you done this spring to prepare for summer storms? Now is the time to get supplies in order before the storm season begins. Reduce property damage and get through any hurricane emergency with less stress by preparing before the season begins.
Here are a few of the best practices to put into place this spring. Be sure to plan your evacuation route well ahead of time. Look for alternate routes out of your neighborhood should one of the roadways be blocked by downed power lines, trees or other debris. It is best to keep non-perishable emergency food supplies on hand for each family member. You should also have one gallon of water, per person, per day. Don’t forget about your pets. They will need supplies too. Because storm damage may occur, it may be a good idea to read over your policy and be familiar with it. It is also a good idea to take an inventory of your personal property. Keep this list with the list of emergency contacts in a safe and in an accessible place. Be sure to have your insurance agent’s information and add SERVPRO of North Cabarrus County & China Grove to your list as well. If any storm damage occurs to your home, you will want to be sure to give us a call. Taking these steps to protect your home before storm season starts up will allow you and your family to be better prepared.
Get your HVAC unit ready for this summer
Is your HVAC unit ready for this summer?
Give your HVAC unit a tune-up
It is that time of year when the temperatures are rising outside and you are thinking about turning on the air-conditioning for the first time this season. There are a few things you should know to help maintain your HVAC unit as we get closer to the hotter days of summer.
Start off by making sure you set the unit to cold. Sounds obvious. But the last time you may have looked at it, you were running the heat. Next, take a look at the outdoor unit. Is it clear of debris.? As we transition into the summer months, be sure to remove any obstructions. Have your heating and cooling system inspected by a qualified service professional at least once a year to be sure that it is running at optimal efficiency and to diagnose any potential problems. This is a great time to add any additional Freon your unit may be lacking or make any repairs to the system before you put it into overdrive this summer. Remember to replace the air filters on your HVAC unit at least every 90 days to prolong its life and increase its efficiency. This also helps limit the allergen in the air. As you are conducting this annual upkeep, consider having your air ducts cleaned each season as well. This is a service that our team at SERVPRO of North Cabarrus County & China Grove can help you out with. Cleaner air means easier breathing. Also dirty systems work harder and use more energy. Our trained professionals can provide cleaning services that restore peak energy efficacy, eliminate offensive odors and improve the indoor air quality of your home. So before you crank up the air this summer, make sure you call the team at SERVPRO of North Cabarrus County & China Grove help you get your HVAC unit in check.
Water: When the Source of Life Becomes a Source of Strife
Don't build an ark, call SERVPRO!
Water is our source of life and we need it to survive. It hydrates and replenishes our bodies, serves to grow many of our food sources, and even cleans the air that we breathe; but we don’t necessarily want water everywhere. Our hardwood floors, sheetrock, or furniture are perfect examples of places where we would just as soon not find water. Water intrusions can happen when we least expect them. Burst pipes, leaky roofs, or clogged drains are just a few of the ways that water can quickly overtake your home. If your source of life has become your source of strife, SERVPRO of North Cabarrus County & China Grove can help. Our expert technicians are trained and equipped to deal with water losses so that further damage and mold can be prevented. Immediate response and proper drying procedures are imperative after a water intrusion. Our 24/7 emergency service gives you the peace of mind of knowing that your loss will be handled quickly. We can’t always avoid a water loss, but we can make it "Like it never even happened."
I'll Huff and I'll Puff ...
A puff back occurs when an oil furnace malfunctions forcing large quantities of soot throughout your home. Forced air systems can send this oily soot hurling through the vents causing smoke damage in every single room.
Because this occurrence is generally caused by varying types of oil leaks in your furnace, the soot can be very greasy and almost impossible for you as the homeowner to clean by yourself. This soot can affect almost everything in your home including the walls, ceilings, furniture, artwork, clothing, and other important valuables. Often times a puff back requires a professional restoration or cleaning service to address the issue.
The good news is that puff backs can be avoided. Regular maintenance coupled with heightened awareness are the tools necessary to help prevent this situation from happening in your home. Some of the signs that your oil furnace may need attention include:
- Black soot on the furnace
- Smoke on walls or ceilings
- Banging sounds
- Odd smells near the furnace
Being proactive and knowing what signs to look for can help you to avoid a puff back situation in your home. It can also help to keep your furnace running safely and smoothly all winter long.
But if you do need cleanup, Call SERVPRO of North Cabarrus County & China Grove to help!
Quick information on mold
Molds are microscopic organisms found everywhere in the environment, indoors and outdoors. Common characteristics of mold :
• Sight (Appearances) – Usually appears as colored woolly mats. Mold may appear cottony, velvety, granular or leathery and come in any shade or color.
• Smell – Often produce a foul, musty, earthy smell.
General Mold Cleanup Recommendations
• Identify moisture problems and remove excess moisture with a wet-dry vacuum and dry out the building as quickly as possible.
• Make sure working area is well ventilated.
• Use fans to assist in the drying process.
• Clean wet items/surfaces with detergent and water.
• Work and egress areas should be cleaned with a damp cloth or mop and a detergent solution.
• Discard all water/mold damaged materials; discard mold damaged materials in plastic bags; discard all porous items that have been wet more than 48 hours.
• Consult with experienced professionals. SERVPRO of North Cabarrus County and China Grove the professionals you can trust.
Call us 704-939-1944
3 Minutes on Fire Extinguishers
What Size Kitchen Fire Extinguisher Do You Need?
f you find yourself dealing with a fire in your kitchen in the future, you’ll be glad you took the 3 minutes to read this post and learn the best fire extinguisher for kitchen fires.
We’re taking the time to write this blog because all fire extinguishes aren’t created equally – and neither are the fires they put out. It’s important to know the different types of fire extinguishers, how they’re used, and some of the best types of fire extinguishers for kitchen are so you’re prepared in case of an emergency.
Keep in mind this information is provided to help you deal with small grease fires in the kitchen, preferably while someone else is calling the fire department to your home.
Different Classifications of Fire Extinguishers
Household fire extinguishers have different classifications that tell you what type of fire they are capable of putting out. If you use the wrong class on a fire, you could make the situation worse. Luckily, fire extinguishers are clearly labeled.
Class A: For trash, wood, and/or paper fires.
Class B: For liquids and/or grease fires.
Class C: For electrical fires.
Class D: For flammable metals (usually only needed in labs or industrial plants).
Class K: Specifically for kitchen fires when grease and oil are involved.
Note, some fire extinguishers may be rated in more than one class which means you can use them on different types of fires.
What Size Kitchen Fire Extinguisher Do You Need?
There are several sizes of extinguishers to choose from. How do you know what size makes the best fire extinguisher for kitchen use? It’s a pretty easy choice once you know the recommendations based on the sizes.
Classes A and B also have a number before the letter that tell you basically how much fire it can handle.
For Class A extinguishers, the number (from 1 to 40) represents the equivalency for gallons of water. 1 is equal to 1.25 gallons of water, so a 3 rated extinguisher is the same as 3.75 gallons of water.
For Class B extinguishers, the rating goes from 1 to 640 and it represents square footage a fire can handle. 20B means you’ll be able to handle a fire that’s spread to cover 20 square feet.
For Class C, D, and K, there are no numbers, so you’ll use the numbers from the A and B ratings to choose your extinguisher.
Keep in mind that the extinguisher size also varies based on the weight. Typically, there are 4 lbs, 5 lbs, 10 lbs, and 20 lbs extinguishers. Bigger isn’t always better here – if you can’t pick up the extinguisher and sweep it to put out the fire because the device is too heavy, you’ll wish you chose the 5 or 10 pounder instead of the 20. Note: extinguishers are heavier than their displayed weight when fully charged.
PASS: How to Use a Fire Extinguisher
Knowing what fire extinguisher to use based on the type of fire you’re dealing with is only half the battle. You also need to know how to use a fire extinguisher. A good way to remember what to do in a moment of panic is the acronym P.A.S.S. It stands for:
Step 1: Pull the pin.
Step 2: Aim the extinguisher at the kitchen fire low with the nozzle at the base of the fire.
Step 3: Squeeze the handle to begin extinguishing the fire.
Step 4: Sweep the extinguisher side to side at the fire’s base until it’s out. Be careful of re-ignition.
5 of the Best Fire Extinguishers for Kitchens
Some of our favorite fire extinguishers for kitchen fires are:
- Amerex B500 Rechargeable 5-lb Extinguisher: Weighs under 10 pounds fully charged and works with all three classes of home fires.
- WilliamsRDM Stovetop Firestop Extinguisher: This kitchen fire extinguisher is mounted above your stove and activates when it detects fires. It uses baking soda and installs flawlessly via a magnet. You’ll need to purchase another extinguisher to have on hand for other types of fires that happen away from the stovetop.
- Kidde 466112 Pro Dry Chemical Fire Extinguisher: This extinguishers discharges in fifteen seconds or less and has a range up to fifteen feet. It’s suitable for Class A, B, and C fires, is very durable, and weighs under 10 pounds. Note: Kidde recalled extinguishers with plastic handles, but this one wasn’t part of the recall.
- First Alert Rechargeable Standard Home Fire Extinguisher: All metal and suitable for A, B, and C class fires and rechargeable (by a professional) if you have to use it.
- First Alert Fire Extinguishing Spray: One-time use, lightweight, and biodegradable, this fire extinguisher discharges for 32 seconds in a fine mist that’s easy to clean. You’ll want to keep a standard extinguisher on hand because this one is small and only single-use.
We hope you found this post about the best type of fire extinguisher for kitchen fires useful and are ordering your fire extinguishers to go in multiple rooms in your home if you don’t already have them. Remember, SERVPRO of North Cabarrus County and China Grove is here for all of your flood, fire, and mold cleanup and reconstruction. Contact us today.