Recent Posts

The Leading 5 Causes of Commercial Water Damage

8/17/2018 (Permalink)

Water damage affecting a business causes a lot more problems than just the physical damage. People will lose days, maybe even weeks of work depending on how big the problem is. Through research collected over the past years, the top 5 causes of commercial water damage were determined in order to help businesses try to prevent it from happening in their own building.

  • Appliance and Equipment

Appliances such as air conditioning units, heaters, or anything utilizes tubes, pipes, and filters that water runs through, are at risk of leaking. If your business uses water then there will be some risks for leaks. The best thing to do to keep these pieces of equipment from leaking is simply to perform routine maintenance on them and always be checking for leaks. Anything that seems to be a concern, such as rust, cracks, bulges or moisture, should be taken care of immediately.

  • Roofing

Roofs are known to leak, so they should be checked regularly. You want to make sure that the roof is draining all the water efficiently. Over time, if not a roof is not maintained, leaks and cracks are very likely to happen through wear and tear. To avoid water damage due to your roof just be sure to be checking it a few times a year.

  • Pipes and Drains

Plumbing is the most obvious possible source of water damage as it is very susceptible to clogs, blockages and damage. As with the appliances you should be checking regularly for any signs of potential damage to the system before the water has a chance to leak, such as blue stains and moisture.

  • Sprinkler Systems

Always check your sprinkler systems for signs of rust and replace if necessary. Although these may be one of the last things on your mind, they can and will malfunction if they are not taken care of.

  • Mother Nature

While you can’t stop mother nature and all the weather she brings, you can regularly be checking your building to make sure everything is in tip top shape to avoid more damage when she strikes. Cleaning drains, gutters, having flood insurance are all good preventative measure to have in place.

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PSBA School Leadership Conference

8/15/2018 (Permalink)

Our very own Mike McGrory is presenting Emergency Preparedness and Active Shooter Response at The PSBA Conference!

Learning Labs 101

What is a conference Learning Lab? It's an opportunity to experience a "mini" educational session with an industry expert, such as a provider of services or products to the education community. Learn about possible solutions to issues schools are currently dealing with. The presentations are followed by a Q&A period. The Learning Labs will be located in the Cocoa Rooms at the Hershey Lodge during the School Leadership Conference, from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. on Oct. 17 and 10 a.m.-2 p.m. on Oct. 18. Here are a few you can attend this year:

Achieving Cost-Effective Projects
Emergency Preparedness & Active Shooter Response
PSDLAF Protect-Fraud Prevention Services Overview


Mold and Your Health

8/14/2018 (Permalink)

Most people do not realize how badly mold can affect your health both short term and long term. Everyone has different levels of sensitivity to mold and thus will have various reactions. Those who only have a mild sensitivity will mostly experience symptoms such as nasal stuffiness, coughing, wheezing, throat irritation and at times skin irritation. Next comes the people who suffer from a mold allergy. Their symptoms tend to be a little more serious and affect their lungs more often than not. Immunocompromised individuals or those with chronic lung illnesses may actually get a serious infection in their lungs if exposed to mold. Studies recently have linked early exposure of mold to the development of asthma in children.

Mold is a very serious entity and has been documented to cause serious health problems. It can grow inside, outside and can even enter your home through open doorways, windows, vents, and even air conditioning systems. Mold tends to grow in places with lots of moisture and humidity so be sure to check your house inside and out for leaks and/or cracks in which it could possibly grow. Protect yourself, friends and family from mold by taking the necessary precautions to make sure mold doesn’t start growing in your home or business today.

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All About Flash Floods!

8/13/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Damage All About Flash Floods! Shown above is a flash flood at Cobbs Creek in Philadelphia, Pa.

We all get those “Flash Flood Warnings” on our phones during a heavy rain storm and most people don’t think much of it. Flash floods are actually very dangerous and can cause some serious damage. A flash flood is defined as a flood that develops in less then 6 hours. These floods can occur anywhere but are more prone to occur in areas that deal with poor drainage systems. Heavy rain in the main culprit for starting a flash flood but ice james, dam failures and large amounts of snow melting can also cause one. Areas that are densely populated are actually most at risk for flash flooding as there is a lot of paved roads and less area for water to be absorbed. If you find yourself in an area where a flash flood is occurring or may occur try to get to higher ground and no matter how low the water looks, do not attempt to cross it. The scariest part of a flash flood is how fast the water can rise. If you do receive a flash flood warning this doesn't always mean there is one occurring at the time but there may be one that could occur.

If you find your house has been affected by water damage due to a flash flood or a heavy storm give SERVPRO of Upper Bucks a call at (215)- 536-7989 today!

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Know Your Flood Zones!

8/10/2018 (Permalink)

One of the most important things to be aware of when buying a home is the flood zone that it is located in. Being aware of what zone you are located in is the first step in preparing your house for any potential flood damage. The zone will tell you how likely you are to suffer from a flood in your area and the level that your house was built to withstand. Flood maps and the flood history of your region can be found online by simply plugging in your zip code. The different zones you will need to be aware of are:

  • Blue Zones: Blue zones have a 1% chance annually of flooding. These have been determined to have significant flooding at least once every 100 years. A 1% chance may not seem too significant but it is actually considered to be a high risk area and if you are living in a blue zone you should take the proper steps to prepare your home.
  • Orange Zones: These zones have a 0.2% chance annually of flooding.  These are said to face significant flooding once every 500 years. The insurance rates for homes in orange areas are likely to be lower as the risk of damage is not as great. The biggest things to watch out for in your home in this zone is leaks and excessive surface runoff.
  • Yellow Zones: Yellow zones are areas that the flood risk has not been determined. If you are thinking of buying a home in a yellow zone be sure to research the areas flood history in order to gain some information before buying.
  • Blue with Red Stripes: These areas are deemed regulatory floodways. These often are rivers and the surrounding floodplain. The floodplains are normally kept clear in order to be able to withstand potential flooding. There are some circumstances in which there are houses located in or very close to a floodplain. These homes need to take extra precautions for potential flooding.

Understanding what zone your current or future home is located in is a key part in being able to best prepare your house in the event of a flood.  

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Prevent Mold from Invading Your Classroom This School Year!

8/10/2018 (Permalink)

Most schools are closed up during most of the summer, with no AC which is the perfect environment for mold to grow. The doors are locked, windows closed, and the rooms are shut, with no ventilation, it leaves the question of what to do to prevent mold when school is back in full swing. Mold thrives in an environment with moisture and can then lead to some serious health problems later on in the year if not taken care of. Here are some tips to help prevent mold growth so that everyone can enjoy the upcoming school year.

  • If wet cleaning has to be done, be sure to do so when it isn’t raining. Also open all the windows and do not close up until everything is dry.
  • If there are some concrete floors that are constantly wet, try to keep them as clean as possible. Mold grows in dirt and this can then cause a larger problem.
  • Mold can grow in as little as 48 hours so if there are spills or leaks try to identify them quickly and clean them up right away. You can use wet vacuums, heaters or fans unless the problem is too big, then professionals should be called.
  • Keep a close eye on closets that might be on outside walls as condensation can build up here more quickly. Try to keep them open as much as possible.
  • Avoid clutter especially with paper and boxes as if these get moist, mold can and will grow very quickly.

These are just a few of the things you can do to try to reduce the chance of mold growth in your classroom or school building. It is always a good idea to have a baseline measurement of temperature and dew point to compare to in extreme humidity situations. Keeping your space clean and consistently clean is the most important step to take to prevent mold from growing in order to have a successful school year!

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Fire and the Impact of the Smoke

8/9/2018 (Permalink)

A house fire in itself can set a whole family back for a long time and is an experience that is traumatic in itself. Most people who have to experience this are dealing with the emotional consequences and not thinking about all the work that will go in to cleaning their house after the fire. The impact the smoke itself leaves after a fire is almost just as damaging as the fire itself. Some unexpected issues many people look over when dealing with smoke are as follows:

  • Odor: While showing signs of fire damage, the surfaces of your home, specifically fabrics, may also hold a smoky odor. This occurs when the carbon particles, which the smoke produces, are deposited on to the many surfaces around the home.
  • Discoloration: After a fire occurs the effects of the smoke damage appear on walls and ceilings as stains or patches of discoloration. After a few days these areas may start to turn yellow. Many porous surfaces such as granite, marble and travertine will usually suffer from permanent discoloration from the acidic residue found in the soot.
  • Interior Damage: Smoke damage can be more serious then what the visible eye can see. Many times smoke damage will also impact the structure, framing, wall studs, insulation and air ducts in a home. If soot enters the HVAC system it can cause respiratory problems and the smoky odor will continue to be present.

These are just a few ways that smoke can affect your home when a fire has broken out. The electrical units along with all metal hardware, are other things that should also be checked for damage after a fire. Knowing the scope of how severe fire and smoke damage can be will only help you better prepare if you ever come face to face with a household fire.

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SERVPRO of Upper Bucks/National Night Out

8/5/2018 (Permalink)

Community SERVPRO of Upper Bucks/National Night Out Quakertown NNO

SERVPRO of Upper Bucks is once again sponsoring the Quakertown National Night Out and Fire Carnival.  Look for the big green tent. 

National Night Out (NNO) is a unique crime/drug prevention event sponsored by the National Association of Town Watch (NATW), which is scheduled on the first Tuesday in August each year.

Last year's National Night Out campaign involved citizens, law enforcement agencies, civic groups, businesses, neighborhood organizations and local officials from over 15,000 communities from all 50 states, U.S. territories, Canadian cities and military bases worldwide. In all, over 37 million people participated in National Night Out annually.

NATIONAL NIGHT OUT is designed to:

  • Heighten crime and drug prevention awareness
  • Generate support for, and participation in, local anticrime programs
  • Strengthen neighborhood spirit and police-community partnerships
  • Send a message to criminals letting them know that neighborhoods are organized and fighting back  

The Borough is unique in that we have numerous neighborhood block parties with free food and entertainment.

All Mold is the Same, Right?

7/30/2018 (Permalink)

If you find mold in your house you may not know exactly what type it is. There are various different types of mold that are commonly found in houses. Some molds are worse than others and are more toxic than others so knowing the difference is critical.

  • Acremonium: Toxigenic mold that evolves in appearance, from a small moist mold in to a fine powdery mold. It normally grows in humidifiers, drain pans, window sealants and cooling coils. This mold is very dangerous and can cause diseases of the bone marrow, immune system and other organs. It is a carcinogen and can lead to brain impairment.
  • Alternaria: The most common form of allergenic mold in the whole world. It resembles the texture of velvet and has brown or deep green hairs. This mold tends to grow where there is dampness so typically in bathrooms and below leaking sinks. This is the type of mold most people see in their house after dealing with water damage. This mold can cause asthma like symptoms in the respiratory tract.
  • Aspergillus: It can vary in color and is a very common household mold. The long flask-shaped pores can form thick layers of mold. It is an allergenic mold but can become more toxic depending on the environment and species of the mold. Certain strains can produce harmful carcinogens.
  • Stachybotrys: Commonly known as “black mold”. This mold thrives in wet, dark areas that have high humidity levels. It is dark greenish or black in color with a slimy texture. Black mold produces mycotoxins that can be harmful to one’s health and should be taken care of as quickly as possible.

These are just a few types of the more common mold types one could find in the house. If you find mold in your home the best thing is to call a professional service, such as SERVPRO of Upper Bucks, in order to have it taken care of quickly and safely.

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Commercial Cleaning Checklist

7/27/2018 (Permalink)

Every business should be taking measures to keep their building clean even if they do not employ a professional cleaning service. It can become hard to keep track of exactly what you should be cleaning regularly. Here is a checklist to make it a little easier to insure your workplace stays neat and tidy.

  • Monthly Cleaning List:
    • Dust all surfaces in the office
    • Clean the fabric chairs
    • Vacuum all fabric chairs, vents
    • Deep clean all surface areas
  • Weekly Cleaning Lists
    • Sponge all glass windows, both on the outside and inside
    • Clean the refrigerator
    • Disinfect all trash bins
    • Buff and polish all hardwood surfaces, including conference tables, floors, etc.
  • Daily Cleaning Lists
    • Empty waste bins and add nes liners
    • Vacuum daily debris from all floors
    • Clean painted surfaces as well
    • Wipe baseboards, light switches and door handles
    • Clean all reflective surfaces, mirrors and brass
    • Put some room freshener down after cleaning

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