Plants and Indoor Air Quality
Over 26 different kinds of plants can clean air
Sure, that potted fern is pretty, but can it really help with the air quality in your home?
Plants are notoriously adept at absorbing gases through pores on the surface of their leaves. It's this skill that facilitates photosynthesis, the process by which plants convert light energy and carbon dioxide into chemical energy to fuel growth. Indoor plants help with removing harmful compounds from the air.
Scientists studying the air-purification capacities of indoor plants have found that plants can absorb many other gases in addition to carbon dioxide, including a long list of volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Benzene (found in some plastics, fabrics, pesticides and cigarette smoke) and formaldehyde (found in some cosmetics, dish detergent, fabric softener and carpet cleaner) are examples of common indoor VOCs that plants help eliminate. These VOCs and other indoor air pollutants (such as ozone) have been linked to numerous acute conditions, including asthma and nausea, as well as chronic diseases such as cancer and respiratory illnesses.
An indoor plant's ability to remove these harmful compounds from the air is an example of phytoremediation, which is the use of any plant — indoors or out — to mitigate pollution in air, soil or water.
Some of the plants that scientists have found most useful in removing VOCs include Japanese royal ferns, spider plants, Boston ferns, purple waffle plants, English ivy, areca palms, golden pothos, aloe vera, snake plants and peace lilies.
Clean Air is important when it comes to your home and since winter is still keeping everyone indoors, clean indoor air is a must.
Limit Winter Mold Growth in your Home
Don't try and fix mold problems yourself, call a professional
Cold and wet winter months and the ever-changing winter weather can create the perfect atmosphere for mold to grow. When water from rain, sleet and snow during the winter months gets tracked inside, the increased moisture can create more humid conditions inside your home, allowing mold to grow more quickly. Luckily, there are a few easy ways you can do to reduce and control mold growth in your home.
Tips to Control Mold Growth in Winter
- Keep indoor humidity below 45%. According to the EPA, the best way to control indoor mold growth is to carefully monitor and maintain your home's moisture level. If the humidity in your home rises, address the problem as soon as possible. Use a dehumidifier to lower the moisture level when needed.
- Set ceiling fans in reverse. Your fans should turn counterclockwise in the summer and clockwise in the winter. If you set your ceiling fans to turn clockwise during chilly winter months, you will pull cold air up and draw the warmer air downward, which can both save you money on energy bills and keep your home a bit warmer. Good air circulation will also keep condensation from building up on cold walls and windows, where it can be a potential source of mold growth.
- Use exhaust fans. In the bathroom, kitchen and other areas of the home that frequently have more moisture. Good air circulation can help ensure that moisture doesn't have a chance to sit and promote mold growth.
- Clean and repair roof gutters. Regular cleaning removes build-up of lead leaves and debris which will help prevent ice dams that can lead to mold growth in your attic and on your ceilings.
Call a professional
If you can't readily see a moisture problem but you find traces of mold growing in your home, it may be time to seek professional help. Here at SERVPRO of Libertyville/North Chicago City/Lake Bluff our technicians have the training, experience and equipment to re-mediate mold safely and effectively so your home can become your personal safe haven again.
Call Us Today 847-557-1080
Sewer Backup Survival: What to Do
What would you do in this situation?
All the snow and thaws the area will be experiencing in the next few months means more water and flooding. While floods are probably best known for causing extensive water damage to homes and businesses, they can also cause sewage from sanitary sewer lines to back up into houses through drain pipes. These backups not only cause damage that is difficult and expensive to repair, but also create health hazards.
Check out these sure-fire signs you've got a sewer backup that needs attention right away.
- More than one drain is clogged.
- Water backs up in other drains.
- Bubbles, bubbles and more bubbles.
- Toilets aren't flushing like they should.
You noticed water in your home, possibly from a sewer back up, now what?
When harmful bacteria are involved, call a professional as quickly as possible. This is a time sensitive issue.
This insures appropriate removal of hazardous bacteria. Do not attempt this on your own as the contamination levels may require special equipment. Leave it to the professionals.
A crucial step that helps prevent growth of mold and stops further damage to your property. In most cases this can take some time and involve floor covering removal as well.
Having current pictures of your home prior to an accident is highly recommended and can help insurance companies easily identify which areas were affected to help any claims move forward quicker. Make sure you document well to aid in a speedy recovery.
SERVPRO of Libertyville/North Chicago City/Lake Bluff understands the stress and worry that comes with water damage and the disruption it causes your life and home or business. We have the specialized equipment and highly trained team to help you. Our goal is to help minimize the interruption to your life and quickly make it "Like it never even happened."
Do not hesitate to call us at 847-557-1080.
How to beat Snow Day boredom
Got the Snow Day blues?
The groundhog predicted and early Spring, but I am pretty sure he was lying. Winter is still in full swing and that means snow, snow and more snow! Not to mention slippery roads with people who don’t know how to drive and snow days for your kids.
As a parent, I know how inconvenient it can be to have your child’s school be cancelled. It’s all about their safety though so we can’t get that upset. To be honest, keeping your children busy all day is the hardest part. Boredom always sets in and then the whining starts along with cabin fever.
Fear not! I have a list of some great ideas to help beat boredom and keep you from disliking snow (and snow days) even more.
Check it out here
36 Snow Day Activities and Ideas for Your Kids
Don’t have kids, but still have a snow day? I didn’t forget about you. Check out the link for ideas to have the best “Adult” snow day.
15 Ways to have a Grown-Up Snow Day
Always remember to stay safe, keep warm and only drive if you have to. Most importantly enjoy yourself because winter isn't going anywhere for a while.
Has Disaster Struck Your Business?
Does your Business have a plan?
Did you know that almost 50% of businesses do not open back up after a disaster? You can’t afford to be a part of that statistic.
You need a company that can minimize disruption of your clients and business while delivering superior results. With a highly trained team and specialized equipment, SERVPRO of Libertyville/North Chicago City/Lake Bluff can get the job done quickly and professionally. See our full list of commercial services here.
We have been committed since 2011 to ensure that you don’t become a statistic and we are dedicated to helping our customers & community because we live and work here too.
If you don’t have an Emergency Ready Profile set up, then you need to. It’s an easy way to insure your business is prepared should disaster strike. ERP’s include:
- A no cost assessment of your facility.
- A concise Profile Document that contains only the critical information needed in the event of an emergency.
- A guide to help you get back into your building following a disaster.
- Establishes your local SERVPRO Franchise Professional as your disaster mitigation and restoration provider.
- Identification of the line of command for authorizing work to begin.
- Provides facility details such as shut-off valve locations, priority areas and priority contact information.
Schedule your ERP today 847-557-1080
Why Trust SERVPRO?
Here at SERVPRO of Libertyville/North Chicago City/Lake Bluff, we realize you have many options when selecting a restoration and emergency service provider. So, what makes us the best?
- As a one stop shop, we can handle any job from start to finish in house.
- We are one of 1700 individually owned and operated franchises which means we have more support during harsh weather.
- We are “Faster to any size disaster”.
- SERVPRO is a trusted name in the industry.
- We work with all major insurance carriers and have relationships with many local providers.
- Our personal franchise has over 35 years of combined experience in any situation.
- Our customers’ needs come first.
- We have the necessary and specialty equipment to get any job completed.
- We handle both commercial and residential properties.
- Open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.
- As a locally owed and operated franchise, we live and work in the same communities you do.
- We love what we do!
If you have questions, need any assistance or would like a free estimate. Give us a call today 847-557-1080.
Mitigation VS Restoration for Fire Damage
Do you have the right coverage for this?
Mitigation or restoration? These are common terms come up when handling fire damage cleanup. It may not seem like there’s much of a difference, but in fact there are significant differences which can have major financial impacts to you. Some insurance plans cover both and some only cover mitigation or restoration services. Not knowing the difference can cost you big and leave you with a lot of work and stress.
Mitigation generally refers to reducing the severity of something, in this case, the impact of fire damage. Simply, it is the cleanup after a disaster. Damage is limited and continued losses are staved off using tools and methods like:
- boarding up windows
- Adding roof tarps
- Removing water from firefighting efforts
- Securing the structure against collapse
It’s important to understand that they do not repair or replace, but rather, ensure the disaster doesn’t continue to do damage to the property.
After Clean up, it’s time for restoration. Restoration aims to rebuild and repair your property. Walls, carpet and flooring damaged by fire and water may be replaced. Mold and odors are combated, making your property livable again. The key difference between restoration and mitigation is how it enables you to move forward. Mitigation sets the stage for cleanup. Restoration allows you to get back to normal.
Restoration efforts pair naturally with mitigation and it’s not a question of one being better than the other, rather, which one you need at the time. The fact is, you’ll probably need both, but you may need to figure out which one insurance covers and which one you’ll need to finance. Talk to your insurance adjuster to learn about your options.
SERVPRO of Libertyville/North Chicago City/Lake Bluff can handle both your mitigation and restoration needs. Call us today 847-557-1080.
Stop in the name of Love and Fire Damage
It can only take seconds for your kitchen to look like this.
Love is in the air this month and what better way to show that special someone you care than with a romantic, home cooked meal. Before you show off your chef skills though, keep in mind that cooking equipment is the #1 cause of house fires so make sure you are keeping an eye on that delicious dish you are preparing. It only takes seconds to start a fire that can engulf your whole kitchen and put a huge damper on your special night in.
Ways to Prevent Kitchen Fires
- Make sure your smoke alarm is working
- Stay in the kitchen when cooking
- Keep potholders, towels and paper towels away from the stove top
- Turn off your burner and oven when not in use
Once you have your meal ready don’t forget to set the mood…
Even though candles are beautiful, they are among the top 5 causes of house fires. Salt lamps, fairy lights, table lamps, oil diffusers, wax warmers and flameless luminaries can help you “set the mood” without worry so your night can go exactly as planned.
If the unfortunate happens, call SERVPRO of Libertyville/North Chicago City/Lake Bluff. We can help clean up and rebuild after a fire with our highly trained staff and specialized equipment to make it "Like it never even happened."
How's your Indoor Air Quality?
Could your HVAC ducts be making you feel ill?
Did you know that your ventilation system determines your indoor air quality? Dirty ducts can circulate contaminates such as mold or irritating dust as well as unwanted odors throughout your home or business. SERVPRO of Libertyville/North Chicago City/Lake Bluff is a professional service that will inspect and clean your heating, ventilation, and air conditioning unit (HVAC).
How does our SERVPRO Duct Cleaning System work?
- Our patented equipment automatically adapts to the duct’s shape and diameter while traveling through the duct, removing debris and filth prior to beginning vacuuming.
- A powerful push-pull air delivery and collection system that will transfer the debris from the duct to a 16-gallon container.
- Air is filtered through a HEPA filtration system, removing 99.97 percent of the particles in the air stream. These HEPA filters capture debris and keep the indoor environment clean.
- Part of an optional process, a sealant or coating may be sprayed to address odor or microbial concerns.
In addition, filters will need to be cleaned or replaced to remove odor and dirt.
Improve your indoor air quality today!
For more information or to schedule a residential or commercial duct cleaning appointment, contact us at 847-557-1080.
Winter Water Damage; Are you Prepared?
Call us for an estimate
The extreme cold of winter can cause frozen and burst pipes. Damage can be obvious, but sometimes it's not noticed right away causing more issues down the road.
Signs that you have a burst pipe
-water marks on ceilings or walls
-standing water and puddles
-water discoloration and odors
-water pressure issues
-strange sounds when using water
If you find you have a burst pipe, use these four steps...
1. Turn off your water supply
2. Trace the water/damage and locate the damaged pipe
3. Call a Plumber to repair
4. Bring in a professional drying crew
SERVPRO of Libertyville/North Chicago City/Lake Bluff has the professional equipment and experience to dry and clean your home. Our goal is to restore everything to how it was before the damage occurred.
Don't forget to test your Sump Pump
The Polar Vortex may have left, but a thaw is coming with the warmer weather which means increased water in the area. You may have survived the freeze, but are you prepared for the flood? A quick check of your sump pump will ensure proper functioning that can save you from a different kind of water damage. Click the link to learn how to test your sump pump