Recent Posts

Mold Cleaning: Understanding the Standards for Effective Mold Remediation

5/25/2023 (Permalink)

mold damage drywall Mold cleanup can be risky, use recommended standard for effective mold remediation.

Mold growth in homes, offices, and other indoor spaces can pose serious health risks and cause structural damage. Therefore, mold remediation and cleaning are crucial to maintain a healthy indoor environment. But is there a standard for mold cleaning? In this blog, we will explore the concept of mold cleaning standards and their importance in ensuring effective mold remediation.

Standards and Guidelines 

Mold cleaning standards are guidelines and protocols that outline the proper methods and procedures for removing mold contamination from indoor environments. These standards are developed and maintained by reputable organizations and agencies, such as the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning, and Restoration Certification (IICRC), and the American National Standards Institute (ANSI). These organizations set the bar for best practices in mold remediation and cleaning, taking into account the latest research, scientific data, and industry expertise.


One of the most widely recognized and referenced standards for mold cleaning is the EPA's "Mold Remediation in Schools and Commercial Buildings" document, also known as the EPA Mold Remediation Guidelines. This comprehensive guide provides detailed instructions on how to clean up mold contamination in various types of buildings, including schools and commercial properties. It covers topics such as identifying mold, evaluating the extent of mold contamination, protecting workers and occupants during mold cleanup, and proper disposal of moldy materials.


OSHA also provides guidelines for mold remediation in the workplace, specifically in construction and general industry settings. These guidelines, outlined in the OSHA Technical Manual, emphasize the importance of assessing and controlling mold exposure to protect workers' health and safety. They cover topics such as respiratory protection, personal protective equipment (PPE), engineering controls, and work practices to prevent the spread of mold during cleanup.


The IICRC, a leading organization in the field of inspection, cleaning, and restoration, has also developed the "S520 Standard and Reference Guide for Professional Mold Remediation." This standard provides comprehensive information on mold identification, evaluation, and remediation, as well as guidelines for equipment, containment, and cleaning procedures. The S520 standard is widely used by mold remediation professionals as a reference for best practices.

In addition to these organizations, ANSI has also developed standards related to mold remediation. ANSI/IICRC S500: "Standard and Reference Guide for Professional Water Damage Restoration" includes information on mold remediation as part of the overall water damage restoration process. ANSI/RIA (Restoration Industry Association) 7001: "Standard for Professional Mold Remediation" provides guidance on the proper procedures and requirements for mold remediation projects.

It's important to note that mold cleaning standards are not legally binding regulations, but they are widely recognized and followed by industry professionals as the best practices for mold remediation. Adhering to these standards can ensure that mold cleanup is done effectively and safely, protecting the health and well-being of occupants and workers.

In conclusion, while there may not be a single universally recognized standard for mold cleaning, there are widely accepted guidelines and protocols developed by reputable organizations that serve as the industry's best practices. These standards provide valuable guidance on how to effectively and safely remediate mold contamination in indoor environments. If you encounter mold in your home or workplace, it's essential to engage qualified mold remediation professionals who follow these standards to ensure that the mold is properly addressed and removed. DIY mold cleanup is not recommended as it can be risky and may not meet the standards for effective mold remediation.

The Importance of Furnace Maintenance: Saving Money and Extending the Life of Your Heating System

4/12/2023 (Permalink)

furnace for a home Choosing a professional service to keep your furnace clean and in working conditions.

A properly maintained furnace will use less fuel and therefore, save you money on your energy bill.

Prolong the Life of Your Furnace

A well-maintained furnace will last longer than one that is not maintained regularly. This means less repairs and breakdowns which can be costly for homeowners in terms of time lost from work, money spent on repairs and replacement parts, as well as inconvenience caused by being without heat during cold weather months when most people rely heavily on their furnaces for heat throughout their homes.

Reduce Risk of Breakdowns and Repairs: By keeping up with regular maintenance appointments at least once per year (or more often if needed), it's possible to prevent future problems before they happen!

When Should I Schedule Furnace Maintenance?

A professional technician will come out once a year to inspect your system and make sure it's in good working order. This is an important step in keeping your home comfortable during the winter months, as well as extending the life of your heating system.

If possible, schedule an annual visit with your HVAC company before or shortly after Thanksgiving so that they can identify any problems before they become serious issues. You'll want them to check for leaks and other issues that could cause harm if left untreated until springtime rolls around again!

If you've been using your furnace more than usual (perhaps due to unusually cold weather), consider scheduling another appointment just after winter ends so that everything can be checked over thoroughly by professionals who know what they're doing before summer hits again next year!

What Should I Expect During a Maintenance Appointment?

During a maintenance appointment, your technician will perform an inspection of the heat exchanger and blower components. They will also clean out any debris from around these parts as well as adjust the burner assembly and pilot assembly.

What Kind of Maintenance Can I Do Myself?

  • Change the Filter
  • Clean the Registers and Vents
  • Inspect the Air Ducts

What Are the Benefits of Professional Maintenance?

The benefits of professional maintenance are numerous. First and foremost, it's an expert diagnosis and repair. If there is a problem with your furnace, our technicians will be able to identify it quickly and accurately so that they can get your system back up and running as soon as possible.

Second, we provide professional cleaning and adjustment services that allow us to clean out any dust or debris that may have accumulated inside the system over time (this includes removing lint buildup in ductwork).

Thirdly, we conduct a comprehensive check of all components within your entire heating system during each visit--from checking wiring connections to inspecting fans for wear--ensuring everything is working properly before leaving so you don't have any surprises later on down the road!

What Should I Look for When Choosing a Professional?

When you're looking for a professional to service your furnace, there are a few things to consider. First and foremost, experience is key. You want someone who has been in the business for a while and knows what they're doing.

5 Essential Tips for Maintaining Fire Sprinklers in Your Building

3/12/2023 (Permalink)

fire sprinkler Regular inspections on your fire sprinklers can help prevent failure when needed in case of an emergency.

Fire sprinklers are an essential component of any building's fire protection system, and their maintenance is critical to ensure their functionality in the event of a fire. Proper maintenance of fire sprinklers can also help to minimize damage and loss of property in the event of a fire. Here are some tips on how to maintain fire sprinklers in your building.

Regular Inspection

Regular inspections of fire sprinkler systems are important to identify any issues or potential problems. Inspection should be done annually by a licensed professional who can assess the overall condition of the system and check for any leaks or corrosion. They should also ensure that the system is in compliance with local and state regulations and that all components are functioning correctly.

Check Water Supply

The water supply is crucial to the functioning of a fire sprinkler system. Therefore, it is essential to ensure that the water supply is available and is sufficient in the event of a fire. Inspect the water supply valve regularly to make sure that it is open and that the water pressure is within the required range. Also, make sure that the water supply is not compromised by any potential issues like leaks or damage to the piping.

Keep Sprinklers Clean

The sprinkler heads should be kept clean and free from any debris or dirt that can prevent them from functioning properly. Regular cleaning of the sprinkler heads is important to ensure that they are ready to activate in the event of a fire. It is recommended to use a soft brush or cloth to clean the sprinkler heads and avoid using abrasive materials that can damage them.

Test the System

Testing the fire sprinkler system is essential to ensure that it is working correctly. The system should be tested at least once a year to verify its functionality. Testing should be done by a licensed professional who can check the system's response time and coverage area. They can also check the alarm system that is connected to the sprinkler system.

Maintain Documentation

Maintaining proper documentation of the fire sprinkler system is important to ensure that it is in compliance with local and state regulations. It is recommended to keep records of all inspections, tests, and maintenance performed on the system. This documentation can help in case of any legal issues or insurance claims that may arise in the future.

In conclusion, maintaining fire sprinklers in a building is crucial for the safety of the occupants and the property. Regular inspection, checking the water supply, keeping sprinklers clean, testing the system, and maintaining documentation are some of the critical steps in ensuring the system's functionality. It is recommended to hire a licensed professional to carry out these tasks to ensure that they are done correctly and in compliance with local and state regulations.

Kitchen Fire Hazards

2/11/2023 (Permalink)

clean stove top Keeping your kitchen clean can help prevent kitchen fires.

A kitchen fire can be dangerous and even deadly. Fire start in the kitchen. Most of these fires are small and only cause damage to the kitchen itself, but some result in injuries or deaths.

Overloaded electrical sockets.

Overloaded electrical sockets can cause fires, especially if you use too many appliances in one place. Use only the number of plugs that are required for the number of items being used and don't overload outlets with extension cords. Never use an outlet that has a loose plug or broken cord.

Fire extinguisher.

Fire extinguishers are essential to have in your kitchen. They are an easy and quick way to put out small fires, like grease fires and electrical malfunctions. Fire extinguishers should be placed in a location that is easy to access and can be used by anyone in the kitchen at any time of day or night.

Fire extinguishers should be inspected regularly and replaced when necessary, especially if they have been dropped or exposed to heat sources such as stoves or ovens (which may have melted some of the plastic parts inside).

Cooking when tired.

When you're tired, it's not just your body that suffers. Your judgment is impaired as well. This can lead to accidents such as forgetting to turn off the stove or leaving a pot on it when you leave the room for any reason. It can also cause mistakes in cooking--like adding too much salt or sugar because you weren't paying attention due to your fatigue--that might not be noticed until after dinner is served.

Cooking on the stove.

You should never leave the kitchen while there is something cooking on the stove, in a microwave, or in an oven. You also need to be careful when using slow cookers because they can become extremely hot and cause burns if you're not careful when handling them.

If you must leave your home during these periods of time where food is being cooked--and we all know how hard it can be sometimes!--then make sure that someone else is present who can watch over all of your meals until they've finished cooking.

Using Plastic.

Plastic can melt and catch fire when it is too close to a heat source, such as on top of the stove or near a toaster oven. The heat can cause the plastic to melt or even catch fire. In addition, if you use plastic wrap around hot foods and then put them in the microwave, there's an increased chance of overheating and burning yourself because you're using both methods at once.

Kitchen fires are serious. Kitchen fires can be prevented by taking simple precautions, such as keeping your kitchen clean and dry, storing flammable materials away from the stovetop and oven, keeping pot handles turned inward to prevent them from getting knocked over onto a burner or heating element. Use vent hoods when cooking with oil or grease and turning off the stove when you leave the room. Give SERVPRO of North East Chester County a call for your fire damage emergency.

The Basics of Smoke Damage

1/24/2023 (Permalink)

Dark grey smoke rising. Smoke damage can be a major problem for homeowners.

A fire or smoke damage claim is one of the worst things that can happen to you and your property. This isn’t just about losing your belongings and having to spend money repairing or replacing them; it is also about the emotional impact on you. The truth is that most standard policies cover fire and smoke damage without special add-ons; however, there are exceptions depending on your circumstances.

Smoke Damage Basics

When you think of smoke damage, you probably imagine charred walls, blackened appliances and furniture, and other obvious signs of a fire. But not all instances of smoke damage are so easy to spot. The smell of smoke can linger in your home long after an actual fire has been put out. This can be caused by burning embers left behind when a cigarette is put out on the carpet or other material, or even just from cooking with grease.

Preventing Smoke Damage

It can be difficult to completely eliminate the chances of a fire breaking out on your property. It is important to keep a fire extinguisher on hand. Another tip is to have at least one working smoke alarm in every bedroom and outside each sleeping area. Make sure you have an escape plan for each level of your Spring City, PA home as well. Make sure your smoke alarm is in good working order by testing them every 6 months. 

Insurance Coverage after Smoke Damage

The best way to get your insurance claim paid for smoke and fire damage is to hire a professional cleaning company. They will know what products to use and how much of each product should be used, as well as how long they should leave the cleaners on your property. 

If you have been in an accident or experienced a natural disaster, it’s important that you report any damage right away. Your insurance company needs this information in order to accurately assess how much money they need to pay out for your claim. This will help them process claims faster and make sure that their customers receive financial compensation for their losses as soon as possible!  

Home Value

If you're thinking about selling your home, it's important to know that your property's value may be affected by fire and smoke damage. If you do have a fire in your Spring City, PA home and the smoke has caused damage, you should get an inspection as soon as possible—the sooner the better. A professional home inspection will help determine what repairs need to be made before selling or listing your house for sale. You can't get a loan without having a home inspection done on any property where there is significant visible damage—and neither can anyone else who wants to buy from you!

Smoke damage can be a major problem for homeowners. If you have smoke damage and need help restoring your home back to normal, give SERVPRO of North East Chester County a call.

What is Water Extraction?

12/4/2022 (Permalink)

SERVPRO Technician removing drywall due to water damage If you do ever find yourself in need of water extraction services, we encourage you to contact SERVPRO of Northeast Chester County

What is Water Extraction?

Water damage can happen to anyone, at any time. There are many reasons why flooding happens, but most of them are out of our control. Rainfall, plumbing problems, leaking or burst pipes, and sewage backup are the most common causes of water damage. Water extraction is necessary in order to prevent future damage from happening when the original water damage has already occurred. Water extraction ensures that no water is left behind within your property by using specialized equipment and techniques to eliminate all traces of moisture completely from your Spring City, PA home or business.

Flood and water damage can happen to anyone at any time.

You may be surprised to learn that water damage can happen to anyone at any time. It's not just a problem for people who live in areas where hurricanes and tornadoes are common—water damage is a real issue everywhere, and it can occur for a wide range of reasons.

Water damage is often caused by storms or other natural disasters. But even if you don't live in an area prone to flooding, there are still plenty of ways that your home could get damaged by water: a burst pipe or faulty plumbing system, an overflowing toilet, faulty construction or roofing materials that leak, clogged gutters allowing rainwater runoff into your basement—the list goes on and on. And while these issues aren't tied exclusively to any one geographic location, those living in areas where precipitation tends to be more intense tend to face more problems from this type of thing than those who don't have such rainy weather patterns year-round.

The reasons for water damage are many and varied. But what if you find yourself in this situation? How do you handle it? What steps should you take?

There are many reasons why flooding happens, but most of them are out of our control.

While there isn't much that can be done about natural disasters like hurricanes and tornadoes, some water damage is preventable if you're aware of your surroundings. It's important to know where your main shutoff valve is located so you can turn off any leaks as soon as they occur. It's also crucial that homeowners locate their main water shutoff valve because this allows them to stop water flow before it gets into their home or business through a busted pipe or leaky sprinkler system.

Extraction ensures that no water is left behind within your property.

Water extraction is a process that ensures no water is left behind within your property. Water damage restoration professionals use powerful, specialized equipment to remove excess moisture from your home or business. This process is necessary for several reasons:

  • To prevent future damage
  • For safety reasons (e.g., electrical)
  • To help with the drying process

Water extraction is necessary in order to prevent future damage.

It's important to understand that water extraction is necessary to keep your home safe in the event of a flood. Water removal is the first step in the restoration process because it prevents mold growth and other damage from occurring. After all, if there is standing water left behind after a flood or leak, you may end up with expensive repairs that don't need to be done if the water was removed initially.

The next step would be drying out any remaining moisture, which can cause mold growth if left untreated. Moisture-free air has a relative humidity level (RH) of less than 50%. To achieve this RH level, dehumidifiers are used as well as fans which circulate air throughout your house so they can dry out areas where moist conditions were present before restoration occurred

We hope that this article has helped you understand why water extraction is necessary and how it can help prevent future damage. If you do ever find yourself in need of water extraction services, we encourage you to contact SERVPRO of Northeast Chester County as soon as possible so that we can assist in any way we can.

Category Three Water Loss

11/1/2022 (Permalink)

Water Category If you have a category three water in your North East Chester County home or business and don't know what to do, call your local SERVPRO.

Category Three Water Loss

Water damage can occur in any home, whether it's a small leak or a major flood. There are three levels of water damage: category one, category two, and category three. Each of these needs to be cleaned up in a particular way. In this blog post, we want to highlight everything you need to know about category three water loss.

What is a Category Three Water Loss?

Category three water damage is commonly referred to as black water because they contain more than just clear water. Sewage is also considered a category three water damage because it contains bacteria that need to be cleaned up by an expert in order for the home to be safe again.

Black water is a mix of sewage and stormwater that has contaminated your property after the flooding subsided. Black water contains bacteria, viruses, and other contaminants that can cause illness.

Sewage backup can be caused by many different things including aged or damaged pipes; blocked drains; leaks in the sewer line outside your home; blockages caused by tree roots or grease buildup behind your toilet bowl; or even sink overflows from clogged pipes causing overflow into other areas of your home.

Outside Source

It's important to know the difference between black water and gray water. While both are types of water damage, they come from different sources and require different treatments.

Black water comes from an outside source, like a pipe or septic system that has been damaged. If you see black or brown liquid in your home, it could be caused by floods or heavy rains that flood the basement or foundation of your house. Black water often contains sewage and can be contaminated with bacteria.

Dangerous to Health

Blackwater (sewage particularly) can be very toxic and dangerous to your health. It should be cleaned up by professionals in protective gear immediately because it will cause severe health problems if inhaled or ingested.

Call the Professionals

For category three water damage, it's a good idea to call in the professionals. Why? Well, for starters, you have bacteria and mold that needs to be cleaned up by an expert. If you try to clean this up on your own, you could make matters worse for yourself or even put others in danger of getting sick.

It's also important that a professional company does its job right because they know how to avoid damaging any property that wasn't directly affected by the leak itself. For instance, if your carpet was wet but not soaked through with water then it may still look fine after drying out—but if someone tries to shampoo your carpets without being careful they could end up ruining them permanently!

When you suffer from category three water damage, you have to be aware of the risks associated with the mold that grows in your home.

Category three water damage is one of the most dangerous and requires professional attention. If you have a category three water problem in your North East Chester County home or business and don't know what to do, call SERVPRO of North East Chester County today!

How to Prepare Your Business for a Fire.

9/6/2022 (Permalink)

Fire extinguisher All fire extinguishers should be inspected regularly to ensure that they are still working properly

How to Prepare Your Company for a Fire

A fire in your business can be devastating. There are many ways to minimize the damage and losses, but it is important to have a plan in place before a fire occurs.

Make Sure You are Insured

If your business is housed in a building, make sure it’s properly insured and that the coverage is up to date. Most buildings come with fire insurance as part of their mortgage payment, but this might not be sufficient for your needs. Make sure that you have enough protection to cover any damage caused by fires or other disasters. You should also keep up with changes in technology and industry standards as these could affect what kinds of services or products your business provides, which could change how much risk there is associated with them.

Develop an Evacuation and Emergency Action Plan for the Entire Business

The plan should include:

  • a fire escape route for all employees to follow if there is a fire, including the safest way out of the building, what to do in an emergency, and where to meet after exiting the building.
  • information on how to assist disabled employees or other people who may need help.
  • plans for pets that may be left behind during an evacuation. This includes identifying where they will go while you are away from work, keeping them contained in certain areas of your business (such as inside cages) with food and water until you return home from work yourself, or having arrangements made with someone else outside of your business who can care for them while you are gone (a friend/family member).

Keep Your Building in Good Repair

Ensure that all exits are clear and unobstructed. Fire extinguishers should be readily available in areas where they are needed, such as near the kitchen and office area. All fire extinguishers should be inspected regularly to ensure that they are still working properly (they should be replaced every five years). Installing smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors is also a good idea, as it will give you more time to evacuate your building if there is a fire. Be sure to have an emergency exit plan for everyone who works at the business!

Keep a fire blanket on hand just in case something does happen!

Store Flammable Liquids Away from Ignition Sources.

Close the lid on containers that contain flammable liquids and place them in a safe location where they will be secure from fire. Do not store flammable liquids near things that can ignite, such as lint or paper, because even minor sparks can ignite these substances. If you see heavy smoke coming from an area where you keep your flammable liquids, evacuate immediately. You may think that putting out the fire is easy but it could cost you your life if you get too close to it. Call 911 right away if there are flames or smoke coming out of any area of your building.

Use a fire extinguisher on small fires only when they start off as burning embers or sparks rather than flames so they won't spread quickly across large areas within seconds which would make them harder for other people who might not have experience using one before trying doing so themselves without knowing how else those types work properly; although there's always room for improvement here too since these situations tend not necessarily happen every time.

Keep Electrical Equipment in Good Working Order, Including Wiring and Outlets

Wiring should be regularly inspected for any signs of damage, such as loose connections or frayed insulation. If you have concerns about the safety of your wiring, contact a professional electrician to inspect it before using it again.

Outlets should be tested regularly with a non-contact voltage tester to ensure that no electrical current is leaking through them (a sign that they may have been damaged).

Being Prepared Can Significantly Reduce Damage if a Fire Occurs

If you're not sure where to start, here are some tips:

  • Make sure you have the correct type and number of fire extinguishers for the building. In most cases, this will be either ABC or BC dry chemical extinguishers. You should also have a wet pipe or sprinkler system installed in your building.
  • Leave detailed evacuation plans with your employees and make sure they know how to use them in case of emergency. The plan should include an exit map that shows all possible exits from every room in the building as well as any obstacles they may encounter on their way out, such as stairwells blocked by smoke or heat-related hazards like hot surfaces that could burn if touched; broken glass windows; inner doors with warped frames which cannot be opened by hand due to excessive heat buildup inside; etc.

Preparing your business for a fire can be a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be. If you follow the steps above and make sure that your business is well prepared, you will decrease the risk of damage or injuries in case of an emergency.

Can Lightning Cause a House Fire?

8/26/2022 (Permalink)

Lightning A lightning fire is a common occurrence in nature but can also occur to homes and other buildings

Most homeowners experience a number of severe storms each year. Although most people do not usually think about it, a lightning fire can and does occasionally occur. During 2007-2011, lightning-caused over $450 million in property damage each year. Knowing how lightning travels can help you understand your risk of a fire.

What Happens to the House?

All homes contain paths that could be used as the lightning strike travels to different parts of the residence. When a house sustains a direct impact, many types of damage can occur:

  • Breaks and cracks in concrete, bricks, and stone
  • Shattered windows
  • Damaged foundations
  • Electrical surges that damage appliances and electronics
  • Fire ignition

Once a house is struck, the energy can continue to surge through a path until it reaches the ground. As the energy encounters flammable materials, it can start a house fire. Attics, roofs, and fallen trees are common areas for fires to start.

How Can the Home Be Protected?

Ensure that your house is fitted with a lightning rod and that the rod is the highest point of your dwelling. If the rod is struck, it should allow the electricity to disperse safely through your home and avoid a lightning fire. Keeping your roof in good repair and choosing flame-resistant shingles can help. If tall branches are growing near, consider having them trimmed so that they are not hanging over your roof. Protect your appliances and electronics by using a surge protector or unplugging them during a storm. If your home is struck by lightning, call your emergency fire department to check for fires in areas that may not be obvious.

A lightning fire is a common occurrence in nature but can also occur to homes and other buildings. If you have experienced a fire in Birchrunville, PA, call a professional fire restoration service to help return your home to its pre-fire condition.

3 Ways Fire and Water Damage Can Coincide

8/21/2022 (Permalink)

Fire fighter out it out a fire of a home Water and fire damage at a home located in Phoenixville, PA

Putting out a blaze is the primary concern when firefighters arrive at the scene of a house fire in Phoenixville, PA. Flames have the most obvious cosmetic and structural effect on a residential property, but damage due to water is often also present. Standing water or high levels of residual moisture will compound primary fire damage.

Here Are 3 Ways In Which Water Damage Coincides With Fires

1. Fire Hoses

Hoses that connect to fire hydrants may release anywhere from 60 up to 200 gallons per minute. A standard fire hose emits about 150 gallons of water per minute. This can quickly cause standing water to pool in a structure where a conflagration is in the process of being put out. This water starts out clean but becomes contaminated by ash and smoke. It may be necessary to pump standing water out of a residence after the Fire Department responds to an incident.

2. Home Fire Sprinklers

Fire sprinklers are designed to activate one at a time to limit the amount of damage due to fire suppression. High air temperatures cause glass bulbs to burst and activate spray mechanisms. These systems can still contribute moisture to fire damage that exacerbates the primary damage.

3. Secondary Damage

When a fire is the original cause of damage to a residence, burnt materials are considered primary damage. Any water introduced to a structure during suppression efforts and the combined effect of fire and water damage are considered secondary damage but should be covered by homeowners insurance in the event of an accidental fire.

No matter the source of water, the clean Category One water emitted by a fire hose or home sprinkler system degrades into grossly contaminated Category Three water upon contact with soot and smoke. Timely mitigation is essential for contaminated water and fire damage at a home located in Phoenixville, PA.