As Thanksgiving approaches (only one week away), we at SERVPRO of Rockville-Olney want to give you a few very important tips on how to keep your home safe during the holidays.
Believe it or not, far too many home catch on fire during the fall season! Imagine preparing for the holidays just to have flames devour your property over something as small as a turkey. The impact around this time of year (as winter holidays quickly approach following Thanksgiving) is astronomical and quite stressful to say the least.
Yet time and time again, we are called to homes in the Rockville and Olney communities around Thanksgiving to cleanup and restore fire damage… and all because of a turkey.
According to the U.S. Fire Administration, compared to any other day of the year, the number of house fires reportedly doubles on Thanksgiving Day.
We don’t want our neighbors of Rockville-Olney to have to experience such a catastrophe, especially during the busiest time of your year. We want to explain to you how a turkey can cause such a huge mess and then, provide you with some tips, so you are ready to enjoy the holidays!
So, how does the bird cause a fire? Well, these fires usually originate from a deep fryer. The oil used typically spills over the sides of fryer in these instances, and falls into flames beneath. Even vapors can react with the heat, causing a fire.
If your turkey has not been completely dried and thawed, the excess water will cause the oil to bubble and spill down.
Here in the Maryland/DC area, temperatures around the holidays drop. It’s typically quite cold outside. Rain or snow can also factor into the catastrophe. It can cause the oil to splatter.
Due to chilly weather, you might be tempted to shield yourself from the cold weather and fry your turkey in the garage or under your deck. Maybe you have a nice, screened-in deck you’d like to cook inside. Don’t! If your turkey catches on fire, the flames will extend to the ceiling or roof, then spread, engulfing the room and beyond.
Of course we understand people enjoy cooking their special dinner in a propane deep-fryer. So, we are including a few tips to follow in avoiding a fire!
- Make sure your fryer is equipped with a gas valve controller
- While in use, keep your fryer away from children, pets, trees, shrubs, bushes, vehicles, etc. alike
- Your turkey must be completely thawed and dry before placing it in the fryer
- Make sure the fryer in placed on a flat surface
- Do not leave your fryer unattended
- Notice the oil is beginning to smoke? Turn the propane tank off immediately!
- Have a fire extinguisher handy
Be sure to check out our next blog including cautions and tips when cooking a turkey in the oven!
Our 365 Day a Year Promise
Any day, any hour, we are here to help you!
Emergencies don’t wait to happen on a day that’s convenient for you. A house fire or an office flood won’t wait until your birthday is over or until Christmas Day comes to an end. We at SERVPRO of Rockville-Olney completely understand that tragedy strikes whenever. It doesn’t matter if it’s Easter morning or the night of New Year’s Eve. Life happens, and both the good and the bad come along with it.
At SERVPRO, we want to make sure whatever nature might through your way is taken care of properly! Whether it’s water damage, fire damage, storm damage, or an issue with mold, we are ready to help you- and “Faster to any size disaster” at that!
That’s why we are here for you 24/7, 365 days a year. Facing a disaster can be terrifying and dealing with its effects is very stressful. We hope to diminish the stress you could be facing with our guarantee. We know the importance of reliability. We are a very trusted and known company in Montgomery County and have been in business for almost 40 years. As a family-owned business, we pride ourselves on fast response, doing great work, and taking care of our customers!
Take a look at what our amazing customers have to say about us!
If you ever face a disaster, day or night, we are here to support you and fix your problem, 365 days a year!
Our 2019 Crawford Day of Service in Rockville, Md.
We want to keep our community and its surrounding environment clean and free of litter! We are grateful for our beautiful surroundings!
This past weekend, SERVPRO of Rockville-Olney participated in the 2019 Crawford Day of Service (explained in a previous blog: https://www.SERVPROrockvilleolney.com/blog/post/171132/why-SERVPRO/2019-crawford--company-day-of-service).
Similar to our last cleanup, we cleaned the local stream we’ve adopted. It’s located in Rockville, Md. Last time we went to clean up the stream, there was a lot of litter. We collected over 16 bags of trash. This time around, there wasn’t nearly as much. We hope the act of littering is on a steady decline!
Due to less litter and in comparison to the last time we cleaned the stream, the water appeared clearer and less stagnant. Litter can foster an environment for algae growth and can block water flow.
Although it felt like the coldest day of the year, we were happy to be out cleaning the local stream, as we at SERVPRO certainly know the importance of water!
Do you like to volunteer? Let us know where you enjoy volunteering most on one of our social media pages!
Let's Keep Our Schools Mold-Free!
To keep our students safe, we must ensure their campus is mold-free!
Schools that have experienced water damage from instances such as plumbing leaks, water overflows from toilets, for example, or poor drainage of rainwater, are at risk of mold growth, which can take place within the first 48 hours of the accident.
If you can see its visible growth or can smell it (usually similar to that of something rotting), it’s an obvious indicator. After water damage, you can expect mold and in a school especially, it’s imperative to call professionals to come take a look as students’ and faculties’ health alike are at risk.
Yet there are other instances where mold isn’t caused immediately by a plumping issue, for example. Mold can grow behind paint, walls, under tiles, etc. and can grow there for years. Mold can be growing behind paint and begin appearing over it, but simply scrubbing the mold off the paint won’t solve the problem as only part of the problem was removed, and it will just grow back.
In these cases, remediation is necessary. Give us of SERVPRO of Rockville-Olney a call today at (301) 340-1313! We serve public and private schools throughout the county. Mold can pose serious health risks including fatigue, nausea, headaches, and respiratory irritation to name a few. Our crew is well-trained and seasoned in mold remediation and will have your property mold-free and safe in no time! Have us come inspect your school, commercial building, or home today! We’ll team up with you to keep those you care about safe!
Considering a Move to a Rockville, Olney, or Silver Spring North Neighborhood?
The Metro can save you a lot of time and money! It's very convenient and a huge asset to the community.
We love our Rockville-Olney and Silver Spring North communities! Thinking about moving here? We’ll give you a few reasons why our community stands out to us!
Great schools: Montgomery County Public Schools are nationally ranked and recognized. Additionally, the area boasts many great private schools if you are looking for that options. Rockville is also the home of Montgomery College, Rockville Campus. For an affordable price, you can obtain your associates degree from this institution for a fraction of what you would pay at other colleges/universities.
Quick access to transit: Our area offers public transportation ranging from buses to trains. While the metro rail allows quick access from Rockville and Silver Spring (and many other stations in surrounding areas) to DC, parts of Virginia, and other local hotspots, bus services from Metrobus and Ride On are available throughout the county with thousands of bus stops.
Plenty of shopping centers, restaurants, entertainment: Rockville Pike is known for its diversity of restaurants. In addition, it has about every store you can think of along its stretch. Looking for something fun to do? Rockville provides plenty of entertainment to its residents and guests alike- and in very close proximity so you won’t have to drive far and can definitely save gas. With ice rinks (indoor and outdoor), movie theaters, bowling alleys, malls, community events and festivals etc. to nearby hiking trails and places to rent kayaks and canoes, Rockville is a happening place!
Safe communities: Our Rockville-Olney and Silver Spring North communities tends to be very family-oriented and diverse. People from around the world come to live in our communities as our area has much to offer. From amazing career opportunities to safe neighborhoods, the Rockville-Olney area is a great place to have a family and to start a great career alike. Our towns make great effort to keep residents safe by installing sidewalks to promote safer exercise, creating crosswalks, putting up speed cameras, and ensuring roads are smooth. Pedestrian safety is really prioritized, and it leads to a stronger community!
Close to Washington, D.C. (can easily metro from Silver Spring, Rockville, Twin Brook, or Shady Grove stations, to name a few): As mentioned above, our area is close to DC! It’s a happening place. From weekend activities, such as parades and museum trips, we are fortunate to have easy access to a city where people from around the world come to vacation to. We can’t forget to mention jobs! Many of our residents commute to DC daily for work. It’s a city of opportunity.
Arts, history and culture: Our area is known by its culture and history. Much of it is celebrated through art. Our area offers a wide variety of tours, including tours of farms, mansions, and old school houses for example. There happen to be many museums and theaters in our area as well. Keep an eye out on community pages for local concert series, pop-ups, and festivities.
A few great spots to explore history, culture, and talent include:
Sandy Spring Museum, Sandy Spring, Md.
Olney Theatre Center, Olney, Md.
Agricultural History Farm Park, Derwood, Md.
Meadowside Nature Center, Rockville, Md.
Glenview Mansion and Art Gallery, Rockville, Md.
National Capital Trolley Museum, Silver Spring, Md.
If you’ve never visited the Rockville-Olney-Silver Spring North area, we at SERVPRO of Rockville-Olney encourage you to do so!
Snow Melt on Your Rockville-Olney-Silver Spring North Property
Keep these tips in mind as winter is quickly approaching!
As the temperatures are beginning to rapidly drop here in Montgomery County, Maryland, it’s safe to assume we can expect snowfall in a month or two. While a snow fall can be fascinating to watch and supports a wide variety of winter activities, such as sledding and skiing, it can also cause many home problems.
A buildup of snow can create massive drifts which gather and lean against the exterior walls of your property. As the temperatures begin to warm, the sun melts the snow, which can result in home flooding.
Below are a few consequences of snow melt/flooding:
- Water damage
- Warped/rotted wood and floorboards
- Electrical damage
To avoid the potential problems snow can bring upon your property, keep the following tips in mind:
- Shovel all snow away from the foundation of your home/office. Make sure all snow is away from ground level windows and doors to avoid seeping, etc.
- Clear all drainage areas around your home/office
- Make sure any garden beds are not creating dams the retain water (add extra soil if this is an issue)
- Inspect your roof and eaves for ice and snow buildup. This is very important as melted snow can get under your shingles, causing damage inside your home. It can also result in giant icicles that can fall and break car windows, fall on people causing injury, etc.
- Have your roof inspected before winter! Ice and snow weight on a roof can cause a roof to collapse. An over-stressed roof can begin to crack, then leak, then sag (or collapse). This weight can also pry open gutters.
- Insulate and ventilate your attic
We at SERVPRO of Rockville-Olney wish you a safe winter! We want you to enjoy the snow, not to become a victim of it!
This fall season, create memories by having a campfire with family and friends! Be sure to follow safety precautions so that everyone has a good time!
Fall is the perfect time to have a campfire with family or friends. While enjoying spending time in the outdoors with your group, it’s important to remember campfire safety, especially as dry foliage can be a serious fire hazard.
When leaves catch on fire, irritants are released into the air, which can cause respiratory problems. Additionally, campfires that aren’t properly prepared or maintained can cause huge issues such as burns or out-of-control fires, possibly developing into a forest fires.
Follow these important steps to keep everyone safe before and after the campfire, so that everyone can have a great time!
- Picking your campfire spot: Look for signs and follow rules! If the area has rules prohibiting campfires, find another area, and do not build your campfire in an area with dry and/or hazardous conditions. Additionally, watch out for tree branches, and be sure to make your fire at least 15 feet from any shrubs, bushes, trees, and tents. Inspect the area, ensuring no flammable items are nearby. Do not build a fire if winds are strong.
- Building your pit: If there’s no pit, you can dig your own. This website has great tips, along with pictures, on how to do so. Take a look! https://smokeybear.com/en/prevention-how-tos/campfire-safety/how-to-prepare-your-campfire-pit
- Building your campfire: For everyone’s safety, it’s always important to gather a bucket filled with water along with a shovel before starting up the fire. When gathering wood, do not cut a tree or an entire branch. Instead, gather small twigs, and sticks or pieces of wood you find on the ground (or which you purchase). Large pieces of wood should always be stacked upwind, away from the fire. Make sure you don’t collect sticks from an animal’s dwelling space. For specific details on how to position and start your campfire, check out this link: https://smokeybear.com/en/prevention-how-tos/campfire-safety/how-to-build-your-campfire. If you’re using matches to start the fire, make sure it’s cold before discarding (into your trash bag, of course). Once you start a fire, it must be monitored at all times. Adult supervision is required at all times. Children and pets must be closely and carefully watched.
- Maintaining a fire: Once you are pleased with your campfire, add larger pieces of wood to keep it going steadily, but keep your fire to a manageable size. Do not let it get out of hand. Also, do not burn plastics, cans, or glass, as doing so can result in explosions, shattering, or the release of dangerous fumes.
- Extinguishing your fire: If possible, allow firewood to burn to ash. Then, pour water on the fire. All embers must be completely soaked and dead (no red embers). Until the hissing sound stops, keep pouring water on the area. Remember, if it’s too hot to touch, it’s not appropriate to leave. Add more water, dirt, and/or sand until all material is cool.
We hope these campfire tips were helpful and will keep you and your family and friends safe!
SERVPRO of Rockville-Olney wishes you a happy autumn season.
Halloween Safety Tips
Make sure to inspect your child's candy before they consume it!
It’s that time of year again to stock up on candy, as trick-or-treaters will be arriving in the masses at your door any day now! Whether you’ll be passing out the candy or accompanying your own trick-or-treater, follow the tips below to ensure everyone has a safe and happy experience.
- Always accompany children! Do not let them go alone. This is the most important step to follow to ensure a safe Halloween.
- Carry a cell phone and flashlight with you at all times. Have your child carry a flashlight to increase visibility too.
- Walk on the sidewalk and in residential neighborhoods whenever possible. Walking on streets or up long driveways can be dangerous. A great Halloween tip is if you live in the country or in an area where homes are quite spread out, drive and park in a neighborhood with homes in close proximity, i.e., townhomes.
- Make sure the costume fits well! If costumes are too large, they become a fire hazard (people commonly place burning candles inside pumpkins). Furthermore, tree branches, fallen sticks, debris, etc. is less visible at night, and long costumes could get caught or tangled in the mix.
- It’s also highly recommended your costume and trick-or-treat bag is reflective in the dark. Adding reflective tape to both is an easy and inexpensive way of doing so.
- Avoid masks and long and sharp accessories. Masks can limit eyesight, and sharp and long objects that play apart in your costume can cause injury. Both may play a part in your costume, but they can cause risks that aren’t worth risking.
- Speaking of fire hazards, avoid placing a burning candle inside your pumpkin. Instead, opt for a flashlight or glow stick. If you must use a candle, consider a tea light.
- If you will pass out candy, make sure your home, walkways, etc. are well-lit to ensure no one gets injured due to lack of vision on your property… that could end poorly.
- Make sure pets are inside their kennels, locked in the basement, etc.; anything to ensure they cannot run outside or “greet” trick-or-treaters. Pets either become excited, protective, or terrified, which can lead to shocking or harming both your pet and whoever is at your door.
- Do not take your child to a home with no light on. That almost always means they do not want trick-or-treaters at their door and that they are not passing out candy.
- Additionally, candy should be passed out at the door or sometimes, in a bowl sitting outside the door. Do not step into homes or vehicles to receive candy. That’s could be very dangerous.
- After your children collect their candy, inspect each piece, ensuring no wrappers have been opened or tampered with. Candy without a wrapper, such as candy corn or gumballs, should be discarded immediately.
- Feed your children a large meal before trick-or-treating so that they do not come home very hungering and make a meal out of their candy. Instead, ration candy for the days and weeks to come.
How to Conserve Water in Your Rockville or Olney Home
Place your yard sprinkler strategically so that it only waters what's needed to be watered. Your plants need water, not your driveway or sidewalk.
At SERVPRO of Rockville-Olney, we see a lot of aftermath from home flooding, which means a lot of wasted water. Excessive amounts of water leaking, bursting, or draining cause these floods. Our website mentions all the details on how we clean up and restore the flooded areas.
In this blog, we will talk about the opposite, water conservation. We hope to provide you with useful tips you can follow to save on your water bill and to our natural resources alike.
Try the following suggestions below. You can see if your monthly water bill decreases by doing so.
- Check your toilet for leaks (the old food coloring trick is a sure way to discover any)
- Check for leaks in pipes and faucets too
- Do not leave you water running the entire time you brush your teeth, shaving or showering
- Purchase water-saving appliances (a shower head is probably the cheapest and will save you)
- Wait until you have enough clothes for a full load to do laundry
- Position your lawn sprinkler in the most efficient way possible. Often times, sprinkler water ends up watering the road or sidewalks
- Plant drought-resistant plants and trees
- Use a broom, instead of a hose, to remove dust and dirt from your sidewalks, etc.
- Reuse water when possible. You can water your garden instead of allowing a lot of the water you’ve used to flow down the drain
- Capture rainwater! Invest in a water drum to catch water from gutters and downspouts
Start helping the environment (and your wallet) today by conserving water in your Rockville, Olney or Derwood home or office today!
How to Conserve Water in a Commercial Building
Consider installing touch-free faucets in your business' bathrooms to conserve water.
Unlike your home, your commercial building is comprised of various employees and clients or customers. You and your family might make a conscious effort to conserve water, but often times, may not strangers.
How often do you use your bathroom sink and walk out with the water still running? Probably never in your life. Now consider this. How many times have you visited an empty public restroom with a running faucet? Probably a few times a year, at least.
One solution would be to install touch-free faucets. This saves businesses a lot of money, even if the initial cost isn’t the cheapest.
Speaking of faucets, you can make an easy switch of replacing your faucet aerators with newer ones of lower power. After companies make this switch, they typically notice the new aerators only use a fifth of the water the older ones did.
Another money-saving, bathroom investment is purchasing new flush valves. Today, there are some great options to choose from. You can buy water-saving flush valves that use 20 percent less water that newer toilets and 70 percent less water than pre-1992 toilets.
If you operate a restaurant or any other facility that calls for a dishwasher, you may want to upgrade to a water-saving dishwater. Although they cost about the same as normal dishwashers, these washers use 40 percent less water, not to mention less energy too.
A few more tips for saving water in your commercial building include planting scrubs, bushes, flowers, etc. that require less water instead of growing plants that demand water. Additionally, you should make sure your irrigation device is positioned practically. The sidewalk shouldn’t be drenched after a watering session. Also, check for leaks or dripping. There’s no point for a small patch of dirt to be thoroughly watered.
If you’ve noticed rainfall and your irrigation schedule collide quite a few times, you may want to invest in a rain or soil moisture sensor. You can save a lot on your water bill from what nature has to offer. Plus, if it has rained or the soil is damp enough, the plants could potential drown.
Lastly, separately meter your irrigation. Unless you do choose to meter, your water company will send all the water coming from the property to a wastewater treatment plant. If you do choose to meter, your sewer bill will plummet.
We at SERVPRO of Rockville-Olney encourage you to incorporate a few of these tips into your commercial business and see how much water (and money) you can save!