WHAT IS EFFLORESCENCE
Efflorescence on cinder block wall in basement.
Have you ever been down in a basement or crawlspace and saw white spots on the cinder blocks? I bet you immediately thought, oh that's mold. Well, probably not. What you are probably seeing is called Efflorescence. Efflorescence is a common problem in concrete and masonry block foundations. The white fuzzy stuff you see along the inside and outside of your basement wall is efflorescence. Don't worry, this annoying build up isn't hazardous; efflorescence is simply salt and can be easily removed with efflorescence removers and other cleaning techniques. More than anything, if you see efflorescence it means you have a moisture problem and if gone untreated can cause deterioration.
Three conditions must exist before efflorescence will occur:
- First: There must be water-soluble salts present somewhere in the wall.
- Second: There must be sufficient moisture in the wall to render the salts into a soluble solution.
- Third: There must be a path for the soluble salts to migrate through to the surface where the moisture can evaporate, thus depositing the salts which then crystallize and cause efflorescence.
All three conditions must exist. If any one of these conditions is not present, then efflorescence cannot occur.
If you think you might have a problem with Efflorescence or mold in your crawlspace or basement, give us a call at 252-433-0005 and let the experts take care of it for you.
CAN MOLD GROW ON WALLPAPER?
Here is some very interesting information that I wanted to share with you concerning you wall coverings and mold.
Many fungi can develop on building material in indoor environments if the moisture level is high enough. Among species that are frequently observed, some are known to be potent mycotoxin producers. This presence of toxinogenic fungi in indoor environments raises the question of the possible exposure of occupants to these toxic compounds by inhalation after aerosolization. This study investigated mycotoxin production by Penicillium brevicompactum, Aspergillus versicolor, and Stachybotrys chartarum during their growth on wallpaper and the possible subsequent aerosolization of produced mycotoxins from contaminated substrates. We demonstrated that mycophenolic acid, sterigmatocystin, and macrocyclic trichothecenes (sum of 4 major compounds) could be produced at levels of 1.8, 112.1, and 27.8 mg/m2, respectively, on wallpaper. Moreover, part of the produced toxins could be aerosolized from the substrate. The propensity for aerosolization differed according to the fungal species. Thus, particles were aerosolized from wallpaper contaminated with P. brevicompactum when an air velocity of just 0.3 m/s was applied, whereas S. chartarum required an air velocity of 5.9 m/s. A. versicolor was intermediate, since aerosolization occurred under an air velocity of 2 m/s. Quantification of the toxic content revealed that toxic load was mostly associated with particles of size ≥3 μm, which may correspond to spores. However, some macrocyclic trichothecenes (especially satratoxin H and verrucarin J) can also be found on smaller particles that can deeply penetrate the respiratory tract upon inhalation. These elements are important for risk assessment related to moldy environments.
IMPORTANCE The possible colonization of building material by toxinogenic fungi in cases of moistening raises the question of the subsequent exposure of occupants to aerosolized mycotoxins. In this study, we demonstrated that three different toxinogenic species produce mycotoxins during their development on wallpaper. These toxins can subsequently be aerosolized, at least partly, from moldy material. This transfer to air requires air velocities that can be encountered under real-life conditions in buildings. Most of the aerosolized toxic load is found in particles whose size corresponds to spores or mycelium fragments. However, some toxins were also found on particles smaller than spores that are easily respirable and can deeply penetrate the human respiratory tract. All of these data are important for risk assessment related to fungal contamination of indoor environments.
Aerosolization of Mycotoxins after Growth of Toxinogenic Fungi on Wallpaper
Brankica Aleksic, Marjorie Draghi, Sebastien Ritoux, Sylviane Bailly, Marlene Lacroix, Isabella P. Oswald, Jean-Denis Bailly, and Enric Robine
Appl. Eviron. Microbiol. August 2017 83:e01001-17; Accepted manuscript posted online 23 June 2017 ,
WHAT IS BLACK MOLD?
Stachybotrys chartarum is the type of mold often called “black mold” or “toxic mold”. Sensational news reports warn about the dangers of black mold and these stories can be alarming and confusing. Any mold in your home should be treated with caution – stay out of affected areas and don’t touch or disturb the mold.
How Do I Tell If It’s Black Mold?
Since many types of mold can produce allergens and irritants, you should contact a qualified mold remediation company regardless of the color or type of mold. In many instances, multiple types of mold can exist in the same house or structure. If you suspect that you have a mold problem, contact a SERVPRO of Franklin, Vance and Granville Counties immediately.
If You See Signs of Mold, Call Us Today 1-252-433-0005
When water intrudes into your property, mold growth can start in as little as 48 hours. Consider the following mold facts:
- Mold is present almost everywhere, indoors and outdoors.
- Mold spores are microscopic, float along in the air, and may enter your home through windows, doors, or AC/heating systems or even hitch a ride indoors on your clothing or a pet.
- Mold spores thrive on moisture. Mold spores can quickly grow into colonies when exposed to water. These colonies may produce toxins harmful to humans and pets.
- Before mold remediation can begin, any sources of water or moisture must be addressed. Otherwise the mold may return.
- Mold often produces a strong, musty odor, and that odor can lead you to possible mold problem areas.
- Even higher-than-normal indoor humidity can support mold growth. Keep indoor humidity below 45 percent
How do I clean up mold?
Mold is everywhere in the environment and depending on how bad it is and where the mold is located will determine the next steps. Mold can cause issues when it is concentrated in an area, like inside a house. In this house in Franklinton, NC the mold was heaviest in the bedroom which was affecting the living conditions of the home. Mold that is bad requires professional remediation from SERVPRO Franklin, Vance and Granville Counites. We recommended to remove all the affected soft goods, clean the hard contents, and to remove all the affected structural issues. In this house further investigation was needed as to cause of the mold due to the molded areas were also reading wet with our moisture meters. Mold optimal growing conditions are 68-80 degrees and humidity above 55%- which in this house was the case. It is interesting to note that there wasn't any active plumbing leaks or roof leaks. However, when SERVPRO's technician opened the crawlspace door the cause was discovered- 3 feet of standing water in the crawlspace. Moisture always seeks a state of equilibrium between wet to dry. The best example that I have is think about is when you are doing laundry and a wet sock falls into the laundry basket full of dry clothes- does the sock dry or does the dry clothes become wet and damp? The wet is seeking a state of equilibrium to the dry. So if the moisture is going from wet to dry and the humidity is high- it is a perfect opportunity for mold to grow. Call us if mold strikes your home or business at 252-433-0005
Fungus at Gaston Lake
Unwanted mold in lake house
This mold fungus is beautiful to look at, but not in the wood floor at your lake home. Due to high moisture in the wood floors as a result of a leaky backdoor, this beautiful mushroom grew. As I talked about in an earlier post about moisture always seeking a state of equilibrium, here is another example. SERVPRO of Franklin, Vance and Granville Counties can't stress hard enough about keeping your gutters clear of debris, downspouts and drainage pointed away from the foundation walls, keeping fallen leaves and pine straw away from the foundation, and having a good vapor barrier in the crawlspace. All of these will help in decreasing the chance of something like this happening to your home. In this home, we had to repair the back door to prevent water infiltration, remove a section of hardwood floors, hepa vac and clean a good portion of the house, and run negative air and then air scrubbers to remove an airbourne particles. Call us today at 252-433-0005, we are always here to help!
CHAMBER OF COMMERCE BANQUETS
SERVPRO of Franklin, Vance and Granville Counties is very proud of the communities we serve and we had an opportunity to be a part of the 3 counties Chamber of Commerce Annual Membership Banquets this year. The first Banquet we attended was the Granville County Chamber of Commerce which was held on January 29, 2018 at the Vance Granville Community College Civic Center. As always, there was a huge crowd that enjoyed food and fellowship, guest speakers and music. It was a night of celebration and renewed determination to see Granville County grow. Our next celebration was for the Henderson-Vance Chamber of Commerce Annual Membership Banquet which was held on February 1, 2018, also at the Vance Granville Community College Civic Center. One of the highlights of the evening was the guest speaker, Joseph Dittmar, Sr, a World Trade Center bombing survivor. Hearing how he survived such a tragic ordeal and how being a part of something like that has changed his perception on life and human kind was incredible. The food and fellowship was fantastic and again renewed friendships and determination to see Vance County grow was the centerpiece of the evening. Our final banquet was for the Greater Franklin County Chamber of Commerce Annual Membership Banquet which was held on February 15, 2018 at the Green Hill Country Club in Louisburg, NC. A wonderful evening of food, fellowship, music and speakers was the highlight of the year for this Chamber. Our guest speaker for the evening was Henderson, NC native, Jason Brown. He is a former player for both the Baltimore Ravens and Los Angeles Rams. He gave all that up in order to do what he felt he was called to do and that was to serve his community and his Savior. He bought a 1000 acre farm and named it First Fruits Farm and supplies needy communities with wholesome fruits and vegetables as he shares the Gospel. This was a wonderful evening of celebration and we are so appreciative to have been able to celebrate with all 3 of our communities. We would like to congratulate all of the winners from all 3 Chambers and say, Good Job, for all the leadership that you bring to our communities. We are very fortunate to be working closely with all 3 organizations in the communities we serve and we will continue to support the efforts of each of you!!!
Oxford, NC Park and Recreation and SERVPRO
We are so excited about this seasons Oxford Park and Rec Basketball! It is a great way to watch the kids in the Oxford community play basketball and have a ton of fun! SERVPRO of Franklin, Vance and Granville Counties is a proud sponsor of a team in the Might Mites league. What a great league name! The Might Mite SERVPRO team has had a strong beginning season and the bright green shirts can be seen dominating the court. All of us here at SERVPRO of Franklin, Vance and Granville Counties are glad that we can give back to the community in which we serve and live. We value the partnership with the Oxford Park and Recreation Department and look forward to many years of helping the kids in the community. SERVPRO of Franklin, Vance and Granville Counties services all of Granville County including Butner/Stem, Creedmoor, Oxford, Wilton, Stovall and other great communities within the county for Fire, water wind, storm, flood, mold, duct cleaning needs. Call us today at 919-339-4848 or 252-433-0005
7 TIPS TO AVOID BURSTING PIPES
Burst Water Pipe
It is that time of year when we need to start thinking about weatherproofing our homes for the winter. Here are 7 valuable tips that can help you avoid bursting water pipes.
1. Wrap Outside Faucets
2. Caulk around pipes where they enter the house
3. Disconnect Garden Hoses
4. Drain in-ground sprinkler systems
5. Let a stream of water run if the temperature dips below freezing
6. open cupboard doors in the kitchen and bathroom
7. Shut off and drain your water system if you are leaving for several days
SERVPRO of Franklin, Vance and Granville Counties care about your safety and hope these tips are helpful. Call us at 252-433-0005 or 919-339-4848 any time for assistance with your water damage needs.
BBB Torch Scholarships
$20,000 in scholarships through the BBB of Eastern North Carolina
As a member of the BBB Educational Foundation of Eastern North Carolina, we proudly announce the 2018 BBB Torch Scholarships. Check out the flyer about the scholarships or you can find out more information through the BBBscholarship.org . The application is easy and it is all online. It is a great way to get extra money for college and get recognized at our annual luncheon! There is over $20,000 in scholarships available.
WHAT IS THE INTERNET OF THINGS?
What Is the Internet of Things?
The internet of things (IoT) is the technology that allows objects -- like home appliances and fixtures, cars, or devices -- to send and receive data via the internet.
For me, it helps to visualize it. When I think of the word "internet," for example, I think of a giant center of content, resources, and cute dog photos -- and the people who can share and obtain this information, all while communicating with each other, via a massive network that keeps us connected.
When it comes to the IoT, then, imagine adding inanimate objects to the situation, exchanging information and communicating with each other (and their end users) via the internet. It allows these objects to execute different commands and actions, making them "smart" or "connected."
For that reason, IoT typically has to be comprised of devices with power -- things that can be turned on or off, like lights or a refrigerator. But that's not always the case, which we'll get into later.
And that's just on the household level. On a much larger scale, IoT is used to connect and power entire transportation or manufacturing systems. It's referred to many as an "ecosystem," in that it's essentially an interconnected community of interacting people and objects, and the environments in which they operate.
So, Why Should You Care?
Consumers everywhere -- many of whom could very well be your customers or within your target audience -- are becoming more and more connected. As of January, about 4.917 billion of us are connected via mobile alone (up 5% from the previous year).
And as we, as humans, become more connected -- so do our surrounding lives and routines. How easy would it be for you to get through an average workday without your mobile device, for example? Personally, it almost seems impossible. It's all I use to make calls, get directions, and hail a car through a ride-sharing app when I need to get somewhere quickly. Plus, it's how I keep an eye on my pet, by way of a handy dog cam app.
Chances are, I'm not alone in my dependence on connectivity. Many of your customers probably are, too. So, where does your brand fit in?
You might not think you have a product or service that, say, can be connected to the internet or to users via a digital network in the ways we described above. But when you consider that 30.7 billion devices are expected to be connected by 2020 (there were 15.4 billion in 2015), you may not be thinking ambitiously enough.
f you're not sure where to begin, here are three steps to get started.
1) Pay attention to the technology available to you.
Recently, at its annual Developer Conference, Samsung introduced Project Ambience: a small dongle that can be plugged into home objects and devices -- like an everyday speaker, for example -- and turn them into "smart," connected devices.
Now, bear in mind that this technology is equipped only to work with Bixby, Samsung's voice assistant. But it's a start. In my humble opinion, Project Ambiance is one small step at the start of a long, productive road toward smart technology's full capabilities. Other manufacturers are working on similar initiatives (such as Baidu DuerOS and Amazon Alexa, which have created tools for developers to build these AI assistants into applications and products) -- eventually, and hopefully, we'll reach a point where technology is developed that can work with any number of voice assistants.
For that reason, it's a good idea for marketers to keep their fingers on the pulse of resources like these and how they're evolving, so that when they become available for use within your field, you can be one of the first to utilize them.
2) Anticipate the problems you'll run into.
When you kick off any new campaign or initiative, there's always chance that you'll run into a challenge. Sometimes, they're unanticipated -- but whenever you can plan for contingencies, do it.
That's one reason why I love the data in the image below. Although it's from 2015, because IoT is still an evolving piece of technology for many marketers and brands, it's good to keep in mind as you embark on incorporating it into your own strategies. Have a look, and think about the ways you can preemptively solve these challenges.
3) Start brainstorming, and look for inspiration in history.
One of the most important elements of staying ahead of the curve in marketing is -- if you'll excuse the cliche -- maintaining an open mind. Let's revisit the words I opened with: "Those of us who ignored [new technology] quickly fell behind the curve."
So, don't ignore it. Embrace it. Start thinking about the ways it can apply to what your business offers.
And if you're seeking inspiration, the Diageo example I used above is just one instance of how marketers have successfully used IoT. There's the ceiling fan company that use IoT to help customize its users' experiences with products. Or, have a look at the manufacturing automation company that uses connected, smart devices to reduce inventory cycles in plants.
In other words: There's still time to figure out where your brand fits in. But don't let it go to waste.
This information came from HubSpot.com, a great source of information about Technology.