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Tips for Testing Your Smoke Alarm

Wednesday, June 14th, 2017

smokeWhen you offer Atlanta disaster repair services, you see the worst that can possibly happen. While we take great pride in helping people rebuild their lives, there’s nothing better than using prevention to avert the disaster from ever happening. When you make sure that your smoke alarm is in full working order, you’re taking one of the most important steps to protect your property from catastrophe and keeping the lives that you care most about safe. Here’s how to make sure that your smoke alarm is working perfectly.

5 Steps to Make Sure Your Smoke Alarm Is Fully Functional

  1. Be sure everyone knows your testing the system. When you make tests a regular practice, it’s important to let people know about a drill beforehand. That way when it’s the real thing, people will know to act accordingly. If your alarm is tied into the home security system, be sure to let them know as well.
  2. Have someone stand far away from the alarm while still inside the house. How well can they hear it? If it’s not loud then it’s time to increase the number of alarms. The alarm should also be able to be heard from outside the house.
  3. Get up on a chair or ladder to reach the alarm and press the test button. If it does not immediately emit a loud alarm noise, you can troubleshoot by replacing the batteries or have an electrician take a look for hardwired models. If that doesn’t work, it’s time to replace the unit for one that’s fully functional.
  4. The test button isn’t enough. Make sure that the sensors are fully functional by spraying aerosol near the alarm or lighting a couple of matches and holding them a couple of feet below the alarm.
  5. Regardless of how well your unit is working, it should automatically be replaced every ten years.

Sometimes, no matter how many precautions you take, misfortune can’t be avoided. If you’re currently in the process of dealing with damage to your home or business give us a call. We’re happy to provide the best disaster repair services in Atlanta.

4 Ways to Prevent Crawl Space Mold

Friday, June 9th, 2017

Deep within your home’s crawl spaces is something that can make you and your family ill: mold. Mold leads to upper respiratory infections and may worsen asthma and allergies. The dark and damp environment inside your crawl space is the ideal breeding ground for mold, but you can help prevent it.

How Can You Avoid Mold in Your Crawl Spaces?

Humidity is a major cause of mold growth. These four tips can help you to reduce the chance of mold thriving in your crawl space by the air below the 70% humidity danger zone for mold:

  1. Check your crawl spaces for leaks. Inspect the walls and the joints of all of your vents for holes or cracks. The best time to inspect your crawl space is right after a strong rain to get the best idea about any possible leaks.
  2. Ensure that your crawl space is correctly vented. Professionals suggest for every 150 square feet of crawl space, you should have one square foot of ventilation. Adequate ventilation helps to increase the flow of fresh air into the space to cut down on mold growth.
  3. Attach waterproof sheeting to the walls of your crawl space to help control condensation. If your crawl space is already insulated, check it at least twice a year for missing, sagging or damp insulation. Replace problem insulation immediately.
  4. Properly vent your HVAC and washer/dryer to avoid the systems’ exhaust from emptying directly into a crawl space. This warm, moist air can encourage mold to form.

Don’t Be Worried, Take Precautions

Are you still worried about mold in your home’s crawl spaces? Don’t worry, call the professionals. Parker Young Construction has been handling disaster repair services in Atlanta, Georgia for over 25 years. Whether you need help with fire, flood or mold restoration, Parker Young can help. Call toll-free at 1 (888) 303-9288 to speak with a specialist who can help you schedule an appointment.

How to be Prepared for Hurricane Season

Wednesday, June 7th, 2017

storm cloudsMeteorologists predict that Georgia’s hurricane season can last up to six months. From June 1 to Nov. 30, it’s important that you remain prepared for extreme weather. At Parker Young, our trained professionals provide disaster repair services in Atlanta and hope these tips about being prepared and staying safe prove helpful.

Emergency Disaster Kit

Having an emergency kit in place will allow you to ride out the storm and its aftermath. Be prepared, and have these items in place in advance. When a storm hits, you may be cut off from supplies. The kit should include:

  • Three days of drinking water based on one gallon per person
  • Three-day supply of non-perishable food
  • Complete first aid kit including prescription medications
  • Battery-operated radio and cell phone
  • Flashlights and battery-operated lanterns
  • Whistle or horn to signal for assistance
  • Shelter-building supplies such as plastic sheets, duct tape, etc.
  • Tool set

Weathering the Storm

Anytime an extreme weather event strikes your area, it’s imperative that you take safety precautions to avoid injury and property damage. Here are some things to keep in mind that are not always common sense.

  • Go inside as the storm approaches. Flying debris can cause injury.
  • Stay clear of windows and skylights during the storm.
  • During extreme weather, remain in a safe space such as a bathroom or basement.
  • Do not use electrical appliances during a storm. Wiring may become damaged and result in a fire.
  • Homeowners in flood zones should turn off their main electrical circuit breaker.
  • Do not use the shower or bathe during a storm. Lightning strikes are common.

Many hurricanes have an eye. When that passes over, it can make you think the storm has stopped. Get a credible weather report before resuming normal activities.

Parker Young is committed to helping the people of Georgia repair and rebuild properties. If you need disaster repair services in Atlanta, contact us today.

Tips on Fireproofing Your Backyard

Monday, June 5th, 2017

fire pitAtlanta disaster repair services are important to community health, and Parker Young is here to help you fortify your home, and keep your family safe throughout the year. Take these fireproofing tips to heart, and protect your backyard from unexpected disasters.

Safety Tips For Grills, Fire Pits and More

Tip: Keep your grill a safe distance away from the home. It should also be away from any deck railings, eaves and overhanging branches.

Tip: If you’re using a charcoal grill, only use charcoal starter fluid. Any other fluids can be damaging to your grill. Or, worse, they’ll spark unwanted fires around the area.

Tip: Keep children away from your yard’s fire pit. A fire pit, while mostly contained, can be dangerous to passersby. If anyone panics, burning material can be tossed into the yard—setting it ablaze.

Tip: Don’t wear loose-fitting clothing—like nylon—when handling a fire pit or a grill. Loose-fitting clothing can collect heat quickly, becoming a hazard to both the wearer and the yard.

Tip: Don’t use your patio heater if it’s windy. The Wind can blow a heater’s flame out. Or worse, it can knock the entire heater over.

Tip: Make sure all gas taps are off before a gas cylinder is changed. Additionally, change any cylinders in open-air environments. Opened gas cylinders are incredible hazards, and they can be dangerous to passersby.

Tip: Keep a fire extinguisher nearby. If possible, keep a bucket of water nearby as well. Fire needs to be extinguished during an emergency—and quickly. By keeping these items nearby, you’ll ensure quick disaster recovery.

Tip: Check the wind’s direction before lighting any fire. Additionally, make sure your grill’s lid will stay closed, once extinguished, if a fire breaks out. The wind shouldn’t be capable of moving any items around.

Parker Young is here to help provide information and answer any questions you may have. If you require assistance—or, if you want more Atlanta disaster relief tips—contact us today.

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.

Call us now! 1 (888) 303-9288