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How to Distinguish Between Mold and Mildew

Tuesday, May 9th, 2017

Room With PlantAlthough mold and mildew can both sprout in damp and dark environments throughout your home, these substances actually differ in shape, size, color and texture. Since the remediation process varies for each of these types of fungi, it is important to positively identify the substance growing in your home before moving forward with its removal. Here are four areas to assess before calling for professional disaster repair services in Atlanta.

Shape

Mildew tends to grow outward from its origination point in a flat, symmetrical pattern. When mold grows, its borders create spots in various shapes and sizes.

Size

When mildew starts to grow, it spreads in tiny spots that are typically closely spaced together. Mold creates an array of small and large spots that often seem to spread through the wall material to the painted surface above.

Color

In its initial stages, mildew starts out white or yellow before darkening to light or dark brown tones. Mold can appear as white, yellow, green, brown, gray or black, and typically doesn’t change from its original color scheme.

Texture

In most cases, mildew will appear to have a light powdery texture throughout its entire structure. Most mold will have a slimy or fuzzy texture that changes as the substance spreads across your walls, floors and other surfaces.

How Disaster Repair Services in Atlanta Can Help

The prompt removal of mold and mildew can protect your home from further damage and keep you and your family from suffering health repercussions from exposure to these substances. To keep mold and mildew from causing long-term repercussions, have the affected areas assessed and repaired by an Atlanta disaster repair services company. Contact our team at Parker Young Construction by calling 1-888-303-9288 to discuss your mold or mildew issue or to schedule a consultation appointment and restore the health of your home!

4 Ways to Prevent Electrical Fires in Your Home

Tuesday, May 9th, 2017

Electrical CordsThe electrical system in your home can prove quite hazardous if it does not receive the right level of attention and upkeep. You can keep this system in safe working order by performing a few key steps on a regular basis. Here’s what to add to your to-do list, so you don’t end up needing help from your Atlanta disaster repair services professionals.

Clean Up Your Cords

Make sure the cords running across your living space are always kept clean and well-organized. Always remember to regularly vacuum around the cords and plugs to remove dirt, debris and dust bunnies to keep your fire risk low.

Avoid Outlet Overload

An overloaded outlet has an increased risk of fire due to the increased demands on the circuit. Balance out your cords and plugs by running them to different outlets in each room. Try to spread out the demand across several breakers to keep your usage even.

Inspect Wiring for Damage

Any damage to the insulation around the wires can leave the electrical components exposed, raising the risk of fire. Always inspect your cords and plugs for damage and remove the ones that show any sign of wear at once.

Protect Electrical Connections from Heat and Water

Excess exposure to heat and any contact with water can cause your electrical components to short out and even burst into flames. Make sure to keep your plumbing pipes and heating vents in great condition to prevent this situation.

Have Damage Fixed By Atlanta Disaster Repair Services Right Away

Even when you put your best effort into keeping your electrical system in great shape, accidental fires still have the chance of occurring. If you experience fire damage, contact the team at Parker Young Construction by calling our toll free number at 1-888-303-9288 to receive Atlanta disaster repair services.

Safety Tips for Electrical Appliances

Friday, April 7th, 2017

Electrical Plugs and OutletsThe average household today is completely dependent on the use of electricity. In fact, in the United States, each household is estimated to have a minimum of 24 electrical appliances. What isn’t well known is that 63% of all residential fires involve wiring and related equipment. These are fires that could have been prevented with these simple safety practices.

Water and Electricity

  • Keep appliances away from water, such as sinks, bathtubs, pools or overhead vents that may drip.
  • Do not operate electrical appliances with wet hands or while standing in water.
  • Never reach into water to retrieve a fallen electrical appliance prior to turning off the electrical breaker and/or unplugging the appliance.
  • Do not put water on an electrical fire. Use a dry fire extinguisher or baking soda.
  • Install a ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) protection wherever water and electricity are within six feet of each other; i.e., kitchen, bathroom, laundry room, pool and outdoors.

Outlets

  • Don’t overload electrical outlets with multiple adapters or power strips.
  • Use only one high-wattage appliance per outlet at a time.
  • Check outlet temperatures regularly. If they are warm to the touch, remove any plugs and contact a licensed electrician.
  • When outlets are not in use, utilize a tamper resistant cover. This is especially important when you have small children in the house.

Cords

  • Check cords prior to each use for frays, cracks, kinks or loose pieces. Do not use if damage is found.
  • Never place cords under a rug as they will be unable to stay cool.
  • Don’t place cords near a heat source, such as a heater, fireplace or open flame.
  • Do not modify the plug to a cord at any time. This includes clipping off the third prong or attempting to file down a wider prong to fit into an outlet.

However, sometimes the unthinkable still happens. Should you find yourself the victim of a fire, contact us for a quick and efficient home restoration.

Maintenance Tips for Your Home This Spring

Friday, April 7th, 2017

Roof and PlantAs soon as spring arrives, all people want to do is go outside and enjoy the fresh air and the warmer temperatures. Another great thing you should do as a homeowner is complete some maintenance items around your home. This is important to do so your home can stay in the best condition all year long.

Maintenance Tips for Your Home

  • Clean your gutters. Throughout the year, a lot of things can accumulate in your gutters including debris, leaves from the fall and other items. You should take the time once per year to clean them out and spring is a great opportunity. While you are doing this, be sure to clear out your downspouts so you can ensure that everything is working properly.
  • Get your roof inspected. Even if your roof is fairly new, you still want it to be inspected at least once per month to make sure no repairs are needed. You do not want to find out you need to repair your roof by finding an interior leak. Inspect it once per year to prevent issues like this from happening. If you do need a repair, make sure you contact a professional to do the job.
  • Trim the foliage around your home. The trees and shrubs around your home can grow a lot in a year and you not only want to keep them looking nice, but you also want to make sure that the tree branches are not getting too close to your home. They can cause structural damage if they are not maintained so inspecting them once per year and trimming as needed is imperative. You want to make sure they are at least five feet away from your home.

Using these tips can help keep your home in great shape and prevent some costly repairs later. In the case that you do find yourself in need of some restoration and repair, be sure to reach out to Parker Young for a quote.

Tips on Picking the Best Smoke Alarms for Your Home

Friday, April 7th, 2017

Pot Burning on StoveWhen you own a home, you need to make sure you have the right smoke alarms in place so you are always protected. Having these in your home can double your chances of surviving a home fire. You should have at least one on each level of your home. You should also have them in sleeping areas, such as bedrooms. Choosing the right smoke alarm can be confusing so use these tips to make sure you get the perfect one that meets your needs and can keep you safe.

Tips for Choosing the Best Smoke Alarms

  • Choose the right type. There are three different types of smoke alarms. Ionization alarms better detect faster fires but are not as good at sensing ones that are slower to grow. Photoelectric alarms are better at detecting slower fires and are best suited for kitchens because they are less likely to go off with cooking smoke. Dual-sensor alarms provide the best protection because they have both photoelectric and ionization technologies to detect both kinds of fires.
  • Choose alarms with a test button. You always want to have a test button because you should be testing your fire alarms once per year. If the alarms you choose do not have the test button, it can be difficult to determine if they are working properly.
  • Look for hardwired and interconnected smoke alarms. When you choose this option, if one alarm goes off then they all do. This can alert you of a fire in another area of the home, even if you are not in the area. This is especially important if you have a large home and you cannot hear smoke alarms going off in other areas as well.

You always want to make sure your home is protected, which is why it is so important to have the right fire alarms in place. Be sure to contact Parker Young for more information.

Signs You Might Have a Mold Problem in Your Home

Friday, March 10th, 2017

Living Room CouchMold is a problem that no homeowner wants to deal with. Areas of your home prone to accumulating moisture, such as bathrooms, basements, and other areas adjacent to condensation from pipes are likely to attract mold so you want to halt it before it has a chance to spread. Your home is also at risk for fast-growing black mold after a flood, leak, or accident. You will know you have a mold problem with these signs.

A Distinct Musty Odor

Mold has a very distinct odor and it can be extremely strong even if there are no visual signs that there is mold growing in your home. Because the mold may be hidden internally, this odor may be the only way you’ll know you have a mold problem on your hands.

Visible Black, Green, or Other Splotches of Color

Mold can appear immediately after a flood or it can take several weeks to appear. Mold can be visible in areas of your home subject to frequent condensation, like bathrooms. Dots of black, green, gray, or another color can appear on the walls and ceilings and they don’t go away with normal household cleaners (or return if you try to use them.) This is a sign that mold spores that are present.

Chronic Cold or Asthma-Like Symptoms

If you’re allergic to mold, you may experience rashes, watery eyes, sneezing, runny nose, and other allergy symptoms. Coughing, wheezing, and trouble breathing are also common symptoms even if you don’t have a mold allergy. Skin rashes and headaches are also common if you live in a moldy home, making it uninhabitable.

If you see one or more of these signs, you need to take action so that the mold doesn’t severely damage your home and decrease your quality of life. If you need quality mold remediation in Atlanta, contact us today.

5 Things to Know When Preparing a Home Insurance Claim

Wednesday, February 1st, 2017

House with Sunset BackgroundWhen you have to file a home insurance claim, it’s important to understand as much as possible about what to expect. Otherwise, you could end up getting less money than you should for your claim. Keep the following information in mind when you’re preparing an insurance claim for your Ellijay home.

Go Over Your Policy

Before filing a claim, take time to thoroughly go through your insurance policy to see what it covers. You should understand what is included in your coverage and what it does not include, such as flood damage. This helps you get a better idea of what you can expect to get from the insurance company after filing a claim.

Gather Evidence

Your home insurance company will need to see proof of the damages you’re including on your claim. In order to do this, make sure you take photos of all items or parts of your home that have been damaged.

Take Inventory

Be prepared to make a thorough list of everything that was damaged. When you make this list, make note of how old each item is, how much you paid for it and how much you would need to pay to replace it.

Challenge Rejections

If your claim is rejected, that doesn’t mean that the damage definitely isn’t covered. Get in touch with your insurance company and ask for more details on the rejection and your policy. Your insurance company might find that certain causes of damage or other factors are actually covered in your policy.

Save Repair Receipts

It’s important to make temporary repairs as soon as possible to reduce risk to your home, such as fixing broken windows. Save the receipts and other documents from these repairs, and submit them to your insurance company for reimbursement.

Whether you have water, fire, mold or storm damage in your Ellijay home, Parker Young can help. We provide high-quality disaster repair services in Ellijay, GA.

Why Bleach Won’t Clean Up Mold

Monday, January 30th, 2017

Cleaning SupplyMold. It’s nasty, unsightly and unhealthy. It can cause severe respiratory problems in people who are sensitive to it. It’s common everywhere in the United States, but especially in the hot, humid climates of the South. One of the most needed disaster repair services in Atlanta, Georgia is fixing the damage caused by storms and flooding, and a big part of that, often weeks or months after the fact, is removing mold and the structural parts of the house that have been contaminated with it.

Catching Mold Early

Mold should be attacked as soon as you notice it’s sinister presence and before it has had a chance to spread. Most people, when they see a patch of mold in their shower, kitchen or laundry area, simply spray it with some bleach cleaner and think it’s taken care of because it looks like it’s gone. They couldn’t be more wrong.

Bleach Doesn’t Work On Mold

In fact, mold loves bleach. Here’s why. The active ingredient in bleach is called sodium hypochlorite, and it works really well for removing stains and discoloration, like the dark spots created by mold. It kills the mold, but it doesn’t kill the roots, called microflora, so eventually it will begin to grow back.

Water is the other main ingredient of bleach, and mold needs water to thrive. Water causes it to develop and distribute spores, which means by spraying bleach on mold you’re actually empowering it to spread throughout the rest of your house.

A Specific Treatment

Eliminating mold permanently requires a special cleaner, and it usually involves removing the materials that are contaminated with it, like drywall and studs. It takes special equipment and safety gear, and a professional to know how to do the job right. Otherwise it will just keep on growing, affecting your health and looking ugly.

If you’re in need of Atlanta disaster repair services, including mold removal, contact us at 1 (888) 303-9288 for a free assessment and estimate.

What Not to Do in a Natural Disaster

Monday, January 16th, 2017

Storm CloudsNatural disasters can strike anywhere. Whether it’s an earthquake, a hurricane or tornado, severe flooding, snowstorms, wildfires, tidal waves and more, there’s really no place that’s safe from Mother Nature.

Many people feel that natural disasters have been on the rise in recent years, and people feel less safe and secure than they used to. If the worst happens, the well-being of you and your family will depend on how you respond. Here are four things you should definitely not do in a disaster scenario.

What Not To Do In A Natural Disaster

  • Panic. You’ve heard it before, and it’s true, the worst thing you can do in a dangerous situation is panic. Easier said than done of course. But take the time to stop, breathe deeply and assess your position. Ask for help if need be.
  • Not have a plan. You should always have a basic response plan in place, at home, at work and when you travel. Make sure family members know how to communicate with each other and where they will meet if separated. A good plan is the best insurance.
  • Disobey official warnings and instructions. How many times have you heard of people who choose to stay after being told to leave an area and wind up getting hurt? Or maybe you’ve heard of those who drive unnecessarily during travel advisories? Or those who mob stores and gas stations after being advised not to, causing accidents and interfering with the emergency response? Official alerts and instructions are broadcasted for a reason. Listen to them.
  • Not have a bug-out bag. This is just a pack stocked with basic essentials for a quick escape. A must have.

Natural disasters are a fact of life, but if you’re prepared and stay calm, they are survivable.

If you find yourself in need of disaster repair services in Atlanta, Georgia, contact us at 1 (888) 303-9288 today for consultation and a free estimate.

How to Ensure Your Home is Covered for Disaster

Monday, January 9th, 2017

AtlantaYour home is your number one asset, and in many ways, your best friend. It comforts and protects you so well that you may forget that it can actually suffer grave damage from an unexpected disaster. You need to ensure that you are properly covered if the unexpected should take place.

Covering Your Court Costs

Depending on the laws of your state, liability can move in many different directions when a disaster occurs. It is always good to check the fine print of your insurance policy as well as state law, because if there is a disaster that causes your home substantial damage, the courts will probably become involved. Liability insurance is your protection against the larger out-of-pocket court costs. Liability insurance also covers the homeowner if there are guests in the home that are injured at the time of the incident. As an added bonus, the proper liability insurance will also cover any damage that is incurred from your pets.

Conducting a Home Inventory

Taking stock of the valuable items in your home is one of the best ways to ensure that you keep the appropriate insurance on your possessions. In most cases, homeowners insurance policies will cover a range of 50-70% of the value of the policy that you have on your home. Without a proper inventory, you may misrepresent the value of the items in your home and underinsure yourself.

Give yourself the benefit of a professional opinion on the type of insurance you trust. The two major types are the cash value policy and the replacement cost policy.

Parker Young specializes in Atlanta disaster repair services. If you face the unthinkable, remember that you have a company that understands the process of what you are going through. Give us a call immediately so that we can help to give you your life back as soon as possible.

Call us now! 1 (888) 303-9288