How To Clean Smoke Damage

The rapid spread of fire can happen in seconds, and even once it’s extinguished, devastating damage can be left behind. Following these tips on how to clean smoke damage will help you get a start on making your home live-able again after a fire.

Determine Level of Damage
It is important to understand how severe the damage is before you attempt to clean it yourself. Trying to clean serious smoke damage can possibly cause further, more extensive damage. If you are unsure how severe the damage is, be sure to contact a professional.

Stay safe
If you choose to clean on your own, make sure you’ve prepared yourself physically for this type of work. Heavy-duty gloves and plastic glasses are essential. Protective respiratory wear is also strongly recommended, as exposure to soot residue can cause breathing and lung problems.

Turn off your air conditioning system
To prevent soot from rapidly spreading, shut off your air conditioning system. Utilize box fans by facing them towards open windows to direct polluted air outside. Getting rid of contaminated air is an important step for cleaning smoke damage and reinstating a healthy home environment.

Use a soot sponge to remove loose smoke
Dry removal of soot is your best option for safely cleaning walls and furniture. Use a professional dry cleaning sponge, especially on walls with a flat finish paint. You may use water and a mild detergent, but only on durable surfaces that are non-porous, such as glossy paint, fixtures, and sealed wooden surfaces. Clean metal fixtures first, as they may rust quickly from exposure to acidic soot residue. If you choose to use a vacuum make sure it has a HEPA rated filter bag. Always clean high surfaces first and work your way down.

Launder washable materials
Wash all bedding, clothes, curtains, and anything else affected by the smoke damage. Utilizing alkaline agents in this process often neutralizes the acid found in the soot. Make sure to dry clean fine materials.

 

 

 

 

Hose down exterior surfaces
Cleaning smoke damage needs to be addressed outside your home as well. Soot on your exterior walls commonly clings tighter to surfaces than inside your home. Be sure to use a hose with an attachment that is able to shoot a high-powered water stream. This will help you effectively remove soot and dirt from the walls.

Learning how to clean smoke damage is no easy feat, and it can be hard to know where to begin your road to restoration. Bishop Clean Care can help you through this process by ensuring your home reaches a full recovery. Learn more about Bishop Clean Care fire and smoke damage services and start a plan to repair your home today.

 


Bishop Clean Care, Inc. is a residential and commercial cleaning company serving our Southwest Georgia community for over 60 years. Be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter for more cleaning tips, and contact us today to learn more about our extensive cleaning, water damage restoration, and duct cleaning services.

What To Do After A Fire

 

Your worst fear just became a reality, as you’ve experienced a house fire. Your home is damaged, your mind is flooded with questions, and it can be hard to know where to begin. The answers to these common questions about fire restoration will help you start to restore your home.

A fire was just put out in my house. What should I do now?
First, if you haven’t already, you should call your insurance company and follow their directions. They will have you take pictures and extensively detail any home damage. Next, you should come up with a plan to clean your home. This is a process that can be hard to do correctly, and so it is important to seek out the proper help. Consult a professional cleaning company who specializes in fire and smoke damage clean-up.

How long will it take to clean everything up?
When determining what to do after a house fire, it can be easy to try to rush things, but it is important to be patient. The cleaning process depends on each individual situation and varies based on the extent of the damage, how much of the house was affected, and the size of the fire. It can take anywhere from a few days for a small fire to a few weeks for a large fire with extensive damage.

Can we clean the fire and smoke damage ourselves?
Although it is possible to clean up the damage on your own, there are very strict standards that must be followed when cleaning fire damage. These standards are set by the IICRC, and cleaning up the damage on your own means that you are assuming all liability for any future hazards and problems that may occur as a result of improper restoration.

Another challenge is that most fires involve different types of residues that are burned, and each residue requires a different and very specific clean-up process. Additionally, smoke particles are extremely small, which makes it difficult to completely clean them up. Without the proper tools or knowledge, it can be almost impossible to rid your house of the smell of smoke.

Should we throw out all of our food?
In most cases, you should wait until your insurance agent inspects the items before throwing them out. The agent usually deems food products damaged and unsafe due to the fact that fires cause the food containers to expand and contract, which allows smoke to get into the containers. If for some reason you cannot wait for your insurance agent to inspect them, you should take a video or photos of the items before throwing them away.

Can I stay at my property while the restoration process is occurring?
This will depend on how much damage there is, how severe the damage is, and your own preferences. Some things to consider while making this decision are whether or not your insurance policy will cover off-site housing, where the damage occurred, and how it will affect living conditions in that area.

What is the best way to secure my property after fire damage?
It is often best to hire a professional company who specializes in boarding up properties. Securing your house improperly after a house fire leaves your home vulnerable. In addition, if an intruder were to get injured while on your property, you could be held liable for their injuries.

What items should I keep in my possession?
It’s wise to keep important and expensive items with you after a house fire. This consists of anything that you consider to be of high value, and includes things like cash, medications, jewelry, checkbooks, pets, personal documents, and valuable artwork.

How can we estimate the costs of the damage for insurance purposes?
Many people request the help of a trusted home improvement company or restoration company in order to estimate the damage. However, this can cause many complications with your insurance company. If damages are being paid for by your insurance company, it is necessary to contact your agent and use a specialized software to estimate damage costs as accurately as possible.

Having an idea of what to do after a house fire will help you plan your cleanup and renovation process. Learn more about how Bishop Clean Care can help you begin the fire restoration process.

 


Bishop Clean Care, Inc. is a residential and commercial cleaning company serving our Southwest Georgia community for over 60 years. Be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter for more cleaning tips, and contact us today to learn more about our extensive cleaning, water damage restoration, and duct cleaning services.

Make Your Grout Great Again

When you buy a new home or when you are looking at tile in your existing home, you might think it’s time to get rid of everything from the tub to the floor because of dirty grout. Before you go through the hassle of a major renovation, consider these tips for your tile and grout.

 

First try to scrub the surface with a neutral tile and grout cleaner. Neutral cleaners do not have acidic solutions which breakdown sealers like bleach or vinegar. These cleaners are available at most hardware stores. You can even use a toothbrush to clean the grout more efficiently. If your tile is still looking dingy, try a professional cleaning. At Bishop, we have special methods and cleaners that can make your tile and grout look great again.

 

After your tile is clean, whether with a neutral cleaner or a professional cleaning, protect your investment with a grout sealer. Sealers can be found at the hardware store or can be professionally applied by Bishop Clean Care. Most sealers dry within 30 minutes and cure completely within 24 hours.

 

If you are in need of a professional cleaning, schedule one at your convenience through our online scheduler or give us a call today.

When to Clean and When to Replace Your Carpet

Five Things You Should Do If Your Home Floods

It can be difficult and overwhelming to try and clean up after your home is flooded, and there are many important steps that can be easy to forget. Check out these five things you can do if your home floods:

 

1. Check for Visible Structure Damage
It is possible that the physical structure of your home got damaged from the flooding. Look for any damage, such as warping or a cracked foundation. This is necessary in order to ensure that your house is safe for you to enter.

 

2. Document the Damage and Contact Your Insurance Company
One of the most important things you should do if your home floods is document the damage. You can do so by taking digital pictures and writing down details about specific items that were damaged. The next step is to contact your insurance company and notify them of the damage.
It’s important to know that you shouldn’t wait for the insurance agent to come out to your home to begin cleanup. That’s what you take pictures. Your job is to protect your home and your belongings to the best of your abilty.

 

3. Remove Water
Once you have determined your home is safe to enter, it is finally time to start cleaning up the damage. You can find a sump pump to remove the water at most hardware stores for $150 to $500. You can also use a wet vac, which is available for $40 to $130. Open any doors and windows in order to encourage air circulation. Also, turn on ceiling fans to help circulate the air.

Safe guarding your house and your possessions is a top priority. Should the water and cleanup be too much for a DIY job, contact a professional cleaning company as soon as possible. Every second counts when it comes to saving the items in your home from flooding.

Remember to take precautions: The water can be contaminated with chemicals or sewage so you should protect yourself by wearing rubber boots and waterproof gloves.

 

4. Contact a Professional Cleaning Company
Flooding leaves you at risk for excessive mold and bacteria growth and requires special cleaning procedures you may not be equipped to handle. Call your local professional cleaning company, like Bishop Clean Care, to assist in cleaning your home. Professional cleaning companies are trained to help work with your insurance company and the claim process.

There are many unpleasant results of flooding in your home. Follow these five things you should do if your home floods to get your house back to normal!

Bishop Clean Care, Inc. is a residential and commercial cleaning company serving our Southwest Georgia community for over 60 years. Be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter for more cleaning tips, and contact us today to learn more about our extensive carpet cleaning, water damage restoration, and other cleaning services.

 

5. Determine if Your Are in a Disaster Area
When a large area is affected by flooding, it is often deemed a disaster area by the government. If your region has been declared a disaster area, you qualify for access to more resources and, in some cases, financial assistance. Your insurance company should have information regarding your region’s status. You can also contact FEMA directly for information.

Alleviate Allergies with Spring Cleaning

We have had an unusually warm winter. We are not complaining about the temperature but the early arrival of pollen is most unwelcome! The nice weather might have sparked your spring cleaning fire a little early this year. As you are weeding out your closets and washing windows, consider adding these allergy fighting tasks to your list or better yet…have us do it for you!

 

Duct Cleaning- On a daily basis contaminants and air pollutants are created and pulled into your HVAC system 5 to7 times per day. If not cleaned periodically, they can cause build up and can harbor contaminants that could cause serious problems for people with respiratory health conditions, autoimmune disorders and environmental allergies. Adding a duct cleaning to your spring cleaning list could help you and your family breathe easier the rest of the year.

 

Carpet Cleaning- We live our lives running in and out of the house. Within the chaos, we track in many pollutants and allergens along with dirt. According to the American Lung Association, if members of your household suffer from conditions that can affect their breathing, such as snoring or asthma, it’s especially crucial that you vacuum your carpets at least three times a week. Routine vacuuming can help tremendously, but a professional cleaning removes trapped stains and kills bacteria with special detergents and high-powered vacuums. Don’t just clean the surface. You need to get to the root of the carpet to improve the air quality in your home.

Give us a call for a free estimate or schedule a cleaning tailored to your home.

 

Five Tips For Dealing With Water Damage

Water is powerful and can be harmful when it ends up in unwanted places such as our homes. There are necessary actions that need to be taken to recover what has been damaged and to prevent further damage in the future. Here are five tips for dealing with water damage.

1. Stop the flow of water immediately.

Locate the source of water leakage and attempt to stop the flow coming into your home. If the damage has been caused by a burst pipe or heater failure, the main water line needs to be shut off. If you have trouble locating the source, contact an expert.
 
2. Take photos of the damage as you found it.
Taking pictures of the water damage will be beneficial not only when professional help arrives, but also when filing your insurance claim. When dealing with water damage, having a visual of the initial damage that occurred in your home will be easier than explaining it.

3. Turn off all power.

It’s a well-known fact that electricity and water are not a good combination. Turn off electricity and gas from their main sources. Do not take on this job without being properly insulated yourself. If you need to stand in the water to turn off the electricity, refrain and contact an electrician. Doing this is not as important for small leaks, but when you encounter the unfortunate event of a larger in-home flood, it’s best to take all precautions when dealing with water damage.
 
4. Clean up quickly.
Once you’ve taken the above steps, do not let the water stand. The more time water has to set into walls, carpet, furniture, etc., the more damage it can cause. Dry out any affected areas by first mopping, then utilizing a fan, dehumidifier, or open windows to allow for air circulation. The quicker you dry the water, the less chance you leave for mold growth.

You don’t want water damage to leave long-term effects on your home. It takes a very minimal amount of water for mold to accumulate and become harmful. Disinfecting after the water is cleared is essential to avoid any mold and mildew buildup from the water. Steam clean any carpet and flooring, sanitize walls and baseboards, and check your furniture.

There’s only so much you can do when water damage strikes, and it can be scary to handle alone. That’s why experts are eager to assist you when dealing with water damage. Bishop Clean Care will not only help you recover, but also work to prevent water damage from happening again. Learn more about Bishop Clean Care water damage services and start a plan to repair your home today.

Bishop Clean Care, Inc. is a residential and commercial cleaning company serving our Southwest Georgia community for over 60 years. Be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter for more cleaning tips, and contact us today to learn more about our extensive cleaning, water damage restoration, and duct cleaning services.

Winter Home Hazards

We live in a climate that does not receifro-pipe-leakve extreme winter temperatures often, but we can be even more susceptible to home damage when they occur if we are not prepared. One of the most forgotten winter hazards are busted water pipes, often due to the old “out of sight, out of mind” problem. The water inside pipes can freeze when outdoor temperatures drop below freezing. As freezing water expands, it causes the pressure inside the pipes to increase, possibly leading to bursting pipes. A few ways to avoid busted pipes are to open kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors to allow warmer air to circulate around the plumbing. Also, insulate pipes, especially those close to outside walls, attics or crawl spaces where the chance of freezing is greatest. Lastly, leave your faucets dripping during the night, when temperatures drop, to keep the water flowing through them instead of building up. Another good tip is to identify the locations of shutoff valves so that you are prepared to stop the flow of water as soon as possible if a pipe bursts. And in that event, you should do the following:

 

  • Shut off the water immediately to prevent additional damage.
  • Take proper precautions to avoid an electrical shock from being in or near standing water.
  • Bishop Clean Care should be your FIRST call. Every second counts when it comes to removing the water from your home and saving your belongings. We are a certified water mitigation specialist and can work with you and your insurance company through the process of your claim. The most important thing is to make the call to get the water out first.
  • Take an inventory of any damaged property or possessions.

Bishop can help if you ever find yourself in this situation. We can get your home back to normal again. Call us at (229) 883-1202 if you ever need us.

Five Things You Should Know About Water Damage

Mold is an inconvenient and often dangerous issue many homeowners face, but did you know there are ways you can fend off the problem? Here are some ways to prevent mold growth in your home.

1. Common Causes.



New property owners are often unaware that there are several common causes for water damage that may not be obvious. Broken sump pumps, burst pipes, foundation issues, gutters, and failed bathtub seals are just some of the ways water damage may occur in your home. The more you know, the more prepared you will be if water damage does happen.

 

2. Insurance Coverage.
Not all insurance plans cover water damage. It is important to be aware of what your plan covers and what it does not. Oftentimes, homeowners find that weather and outside flooding damage is not covered in their basic plan. In this case, you may want to consider purchasing an extra plan as damage repair can be expensive.

 

3. Damage Can Get Worse.
Another important thing you should know about water damage is that the destruction caused can get worse very quickly. That’s why it is important to call as soon as you notice water damage or flooding. The longer you wait, the more damage will build up. Mold can start to grow quickly in the walls and floorboards, which can lead to serious health issues if not taken care of right away. It is best to call a professional within 24 hours to avoid any further damage to your property.

 

4. Water Pollution.
Water pollution levels are broken up into three categories. Level one means that the water is coming from a clean source, like your pipes. Level two means there is bacteria in the water and exposure could cause illness. Level three includes water that is very contaminated and can cause illness or disease with direct contact. It is important to be aware of of the pollution level of the water source. All three of these categories can cause serious damage and should be taken care of immediately. Call a professional if you are at all unsure of water pollution levels.

 

5. Professional Help
Drying out your space and cleaning up after water damage can be a big job, and it is one that you do not want to have to do alone. It is important to call a professional within 24-48 hours of finding water to ensure that your space is cleaned up properly and is safe to occupy. Problems can often hide beneath the surface and a trained professional can catch these and solve them quickly.

The danger and inconvenience of water damage can be a hassle, but it doesn’t have to be the end of the world. If disaster strikes, keep these five things all property owners should know about water damage in mind, and contact Bishop Clean Care to discuss how water damage services can get your home back to normal.

Bishop Clean Care, Inc. is a residential and commercial cleaning company serving our Southwest Georgia community for over 60 years. Be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter for more cleaning tips and contact us today to learn more about our extensive cleaning, water damage restoration, and mold removal services.

Should You Rent a Steamer or Hire a Professional Carpet Cleaner?

Keeping the carpet clean in your home or commercial building usually gets pushed to the end of your to-do list. Here are some things to consider when deciding whether to rent a steamer or to hire a professional carpet cleaner.

 

1. Cleaning
couchblockinstallationMaking sure your carpet gets thoroughly clean should be your main priority when deciding whether to rent a steamer or hire a professional carpet cleaner. If you choose to rent, be sure to do your research. Do-it-yourself cleaning units have a large range of power. While there are some powerful, deep-cleaning units that will work to properly lather and rinse your carpet fibers, there are many on the market that are weak and won’t get the job done.

Professional, truck-mounted cleaning units are extremely powerful. Their strong vacuums are able to suck up dirt, grime, and excess water to help your floor dry faster. The increased drying capabilities of a professional unit also mean that you’ll be able to use your cleaned room faster. Professional cleaners are also able to use hot water consistently to better lather the carpet and help the detergent be more effective in cleaning. The cleaning power of both options should stay high on your priority list.

 

2. Usability
professionalvacuumwideviewAnother thing to keep in mind when choosing between DIY cleaning and hiring a professional is convenience and usability. Rented steamers should come with instructions, but other than that, you’ll have to operate them on your own. While they are most likely easy to use, non-professional users are subject to error. Using too much detergent, not rinsing well enough, and machine malfunction can all negatively affect your carpet. An untrained eye might not be able to catch the issues during the cleaning process, which can lead to annoying and possibly costly consequences.

Hiring a professional cleaner is convenient because you are not required to do any of the work, including picking up and returning the cleaning unit. Also, because they are professionals, the chances of user error decrease significantly. Weighing convenience and usability should definitely be part of your process when choosing to rent a steamer or hire a professional carpet cleaner.

 

3. Expense
rakingcarpetThe question many in this situation ask is, “Which option is cheaper?” Steamer rentals are generally pretty inexpensive, with options to rent the machine by the day or week. Professional services tend to be more pricey but do a better job of cleaning your carpet. The cleaner your carpet is with each lather and rinse, the longer you can go before needing another cleaning. In the long run, you need to consider if you’re willing to pay a little extra to deep clean your carpet once or twice a year or pay to rent a cleaner multiple times and wash your carpet frequently yourself.

While rental cleaning units and steamers might be a good choice for small, simple-to-clean areas, a professional cleaning service is most likely needed for bigger projects. If you’re trying to decide whether to rent a steamer or hire a professional carpet cleaner, take time to research your options. You can learn more about Bishop Clean Care’s carpet cleaning and other special services here.

 

 

Bishop Clean Care, Inc. is a residential and commercial cleaning company serving our Southwest Georgia community for over 60 years. Be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter for more cleaning tips, and contact us today to learn more about our extensive carpet cleaning, water damage restoration, and other cleaning services.