Recent General Posts

Tips on Working from Home, Spring/Summer 2020

5/15/2020 (Permalink)

Work desk Follow these tips to better your experience of working from home!

Many Americans are now working from home due to the recent circumstances. If you transitioned from working in an office to working in your home, you’ve had to make many adjustments! Changes can be difficult, especially those that affect such a large part of your life, i.e., your job. At SERVPRO of Rockville-Olney & Silver Spring North, we are always here to help. We would like to provide you with some tips on how to make the best of working from home!

  • Arrange your workspace in a way you’ll be the most organized and the least distracted
  • Inform your family members or roommates of your work schedule and create rules to diminish disruptions and distractions. Talking to family and friends is very tempting, so you may need to close your door or drown out chatter with classical music
  • Create a schedule that you follow each day, including clearly defined work hours
  • Learn something new! Watch webinars or attend a virtual training your company may offer
  • Focus on communication! You don’t get to see your boss and coworkers face-to-face for the time being, so call, text, and email them regularly
  • Take a break! Make sure you know your company’s break policy, and take advantage of it. Go for a walk to take in sunshine during your break before having to return back indoors to complete your assignments
  • Reward yourself! It’s not easy making such a drastic change, so get your favorite coffee from the local cafe everyday during your lunch break or buy yourself a gift online after completing a work goal
  • Of course, keep a close eye on your agenda book or calendar! Write down every deadline and meeting date as these can become very easy to forget when working from home
  • Turn off the notifications on your personal phone (such as Instagram and Twitter notifications) to minimize getting distracted from your work

We hope these tips help and wish you much success for working from home!

Tips for Purer Air in Your Home

2/17/2020 (Permalink)

Plants There are many benefits to having houseplants!

Why not show your home or office some love during this time of year!

Below are a few tips to improve the quality of your already amazing property!

  • Buy a few beeswax candles (but be sure to never leave them unattended!). Beeswax candles are amazing air purifiers due to their release of negative ions, which cancel out many of the already existing positive ions in the air, which have been released from dust, pollen, etc.
  • Not into candles? Salt lamps have the same effects!
  • Invest in houseplants- just make sure they are pet friendly if you have a four-legged friend in your family! Houseplants have numerous benefits, including an increase in oxygen, allergy relief, and mood-boosting properties. They also absorb toxins. A few amazing houseplants to consider include:
    • Bamboo
    • Spider plant
    • English ivy
    • Dragon tree
    • Peace lily
  • Activated charcoal also purifies the air! Additionally, it removes odor.
    • Have a smelly refrigerator in the work lounge or in your kitchen? Both activated charcoal and baking soda work as agents to eliminate odor. Just place an opened jar or bowl of activated charcoal or an opened box of baking soda inside the refrigerator, and say goodbye to that smell once and for all!
  • Smell something different? Something musty? It could be mold! Have your home checked by a professional, (such as SERVPRO!) as mold can be hazardous to breathe in.
  • Replace older appliance and fixtures with newer, energy-efficient ones. Of course, this comes with time as appliances can get pricey! However, when it comes time to replace, consider going green with energy-saving appliances and fixtures!

Winter 2020 in Maryland

1/17/2020 (Permalink)

Snow-covered house We hope you’ve found these tips useful! Happy winter!

It’s that time of year to winter-proof your house. If you live in Maryland and haven’t already, now is the perfect time to take advantage of the warmer weather we have been experiencing recently in order to get your property ready for the colder weather coming our way.

Below are a few tips for keeping your property at its peak during the winter season:

  • Seal gaps around door frames and windows to keep cold air from slipping in
  • Insulate pipes and hot water tanks to avoid freezing and to reduce heat loss
  • Check your drainage. To avoid saturation, and then the thawing of the soil near your property’s structure, add extra soil to the affected area.
  • Clean your gutters to avoid a backup and potential overflow.
  • Clean your chimney! Before you begin using the fireplace, have it inspected and cleaned, or else, many problems can arise!
  • Test smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, and make sure they work properly. House fires most commonly occur in the winter months. While homes and offices are closed up tight during the winter to keep the cold air out, it also means carbon monoxide becomes more of a hazard.
  • Drain any outdoor faucets
    • These faucets can develop a costly leak
    • Faucets can also freeze over, sometimes splitting the water line, which can lead to a house flooding
  • Cover outdoor furniture to avoid damage from snow, hail, etc., but do so on a nice, dry day, so no moisture can become trapped under whatever you cover your furniture with
  • Find your shovel or snow blower ahead of time. One of the last things you want to do in a snowstorm is crawl your way through piles of snow to your shed to retrieve such items.
  • Check your trees. Is there any risk it could fall on your home or building? Could one of its dead branches? Is a branch touching your property? If so, it’s a good time to chop off whatever necessary before snow and ice come
  • Check your attic
    • Heats rises, so if you don’t insulate your attic well, the heat you’re paying for will rise right out of your home.
    • Check for critters! Animals want a warm place to stay during wintertime. Just make sure it’s not in your attic or home in general!

Happy American Business Women's Day

9/18/2019 (Permalink)

September 22 is American Business Women’s Day.

First recognized in 1982, the day celebrates the women of the workforce and female business owners. It commemorates the achievements of working women around the county both now and from history.

Although these women hold diverse occupations, this day unites them due to their dedication and commitment to their careers and their successes and accomplishments in the workplace.

Here at SERVPRO of Rockville-Olney and SERVPRO of Silver Spring North, we would like to give a special thanks to all the women of our team!

Remember to reflect on the contributions of the women you know who are a part of the workplace on the 22nd! 

Do you recall a woman from the past or present who has exhibited great leadership skills, innovation, or determination? It could be your mother, your boss or coworker, a past professor, your sister, or a famous scientist, or even someone you’ve seen in the movies.

You can celebrate that woman! Feel free to use the hashtag #AmericanBusinessWomensDay on social media, especially if you’re giving your favorite working woman a shoutout!

If you’re reading this, and you’re a woman of the workforce, we of SERVPRO of Rockville-Olney and SERVPRO of Silver Spring North would like to let you know we notice and appreciate all your contributions!

How to Prepare Your Property for the Fall Season

9/9/2019 (Permalink)

Happy September! It’s important to get your home ready for the change of weather. Below are a few tips for how to prepare your home for fall.

  • Test safety devices: Are your smoke detectors and carbon monoxide devices working? Batteries often time die during the winter months as cold temperatures slow or ultimately stop the chemical reactions (the power source) inside the battery. 
  • Clean your humidifier: Failure to clean humidifiers can result in growth of mold, bacteria, and certain germs.
  • Eliminate drafts: Ensure cold air can’t seep through your windows. If you feel a draft, you should consider replacing seals or purchasing sturdier drapery.
  • Inspect trees: Are there any broken, overgrown or suspicious limbs? Become a branch detective! Ensure no branches are too close to power lines (which can cause a fire) or to your roof.
  • Organize your shed: Clear your garage of summer equipment, furniture, etc. and move it into the shed! Swap your summer items out for fall items for easier access.
  • Secure all loose outdoor furniture and prepare to store them inside: Wind gusts blow over your outdoor furnishings, flower pots, parked bicycles, etc. Snow and heavy rains can damage your properties too. If you must leave certain items outside, consider chaining or roping them to a secure foundation.

Make sure the following aspects of your property are clean:

  • The roof
  • The chimney and fireplace
  • The siding
  • The gutters
  • The water drainage
  • The pipes and spouts

Keep in mind that preventative maintenance is cheaper than emergency repairs and damage!

If you need help safeguarding your home, SERVPRO of Rockville-Olney and of Silver Spring North are here to offer you there services and expertise. Give us a call at (301) 340-1313.

Getting Ready for Colder Temperatures

11/17/2017 (Permalink)

With winter approaching, there are several steps that can be taken to ensure your home is ready to withstand the cold temperatures.  Most steps that are taken are inexpensive, and take little time, but can help avoid property damage.  

Following are a few tips to consider before winter arrives:

1). Seal off drafty windows and patio doors with clear plastic.

2). Insulate the hot water lines around your hot water heater and turn down the temperature to the "warm" setting.

3). Replace your furnace filter.

4). Use a programmable thermostat to reduce heating costs when no one is at home.

5). Keep all vents and baseboard heaters clean.

6). Install foam insulators behind the face plates of light switches and electrical outlets.

7). Remove any window unit air conditioners.

8). Close off rooms that aren't used and shut the vents.

TES -Thermal Energy System

3/30/2017 (Permalink)

The trailer that houses our Thermal Energy System

The Thermal Energy System more commonly known as TES is a special drying technique our company offers. This system allows us to combine controlled heat with air flow to produce high-speed evaporation for the drying of major water damages. 

TES is not a drying method that is used for all of our everyday water damage as it does use high temperatures of heat. For some people experiencing water damage, TES is not ideal, as they are trying to continue living in their homes. 

Special Uses 

However we can use the Thermal Energy System to aid in the drying process in areas like: 

 

  • Crawlspaces
  • Hardwood floors
  • Increasing the productivity of dehumidifiers
  • Supplement drying for hard to dry places

 

The TES system may raise concerns for you as a homeowner when we say high heat temperatures. Worry not, our Hero Ready Team has put safety switches in place. These help to keep the TES machine from reaching over a certain temperature or air flow rate which we set and control.

IICRC Certified Firm

12/6/2016 (Permalink)

Both SERVPRO of Rockville-Olney and of Silver Spring North are IICRC firms. The Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) creates the standards for the restoration industry and provides training and certification to restoration companies. IICRC Certified Firms have the right to display the IICRC Certified Logo.

IICRC Certified Firms must

• Present accurate information to consumers and conduct business with honesty and integrity.

• Require a technician on all jobs who has been formally trained and passed all required tests.

• Require a continuing education program to keep technicians up-to-date on the latest changes in the industry.

• Maintain liability insurance to protect all parties in the event of an accident.

• Maintain a written complaint policy and agree to Better Business Bureau or similar arbitration to resolve disputes, and accept the conclusions and recommendations of arbitration.

The IICRC Develops The Standards For The Restoration Industry

The IICRC has been the driving force in establishing the main industry standards and reference guides for professional carpet cleaning, water damage restoration and mold remediation. These IICRC standards take years to develop and require the coordination of experts in the field: manufacturers, industry organizations, insurance professionals, training schools, contractors, and public health professionals.

Every five years, the standards are reviewed and updated. The water damage restoration field changes rapidly with advancements in technology and science, and therefore the standards must evolve to keep pace.

About SERVPRO of Rockville-Olney and SERVPRO of Silver Spring North

SERVPRO of Rockville-Olney and of Silver Spring North specialize in the cleanup and restoration of residential and commercial property after a fire, smoke or water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration and we are an IICRC Certified Firm. We believe in continuous training: from initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.