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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Archived Blog Posts

Using Cloth Face Masks During Covid-19

4/7/2020 (Permalink)

face masks with fabric in the background #HERETOHELP #InThisTogether

According to the Center for Disease Control and Preventionit is important to wear a cloth face masks during these unpreceded times while you are in public. Wearing a cloth face mask in public will help slow the spread of the virus especially in areas where there is a significant amount of community transmission. 

SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert Counties being a locally owned and operated business, they have a strong relationship with the community and care greatly about their people's safety and health. To show their support during the difficult and scary time, SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert Counties has started collecting a variety of fabric and elastic to use to create mask that will be donated back out to the community. 

It is important to note that although these masks can help prevent the spread, they are not a cure and should be washed regularly! Throwing them in the washer machine with normal detergent will properly wash them. It is also important to avoid touching your face while putting on the mask as well as taking it off and to wash your hands immediately after. 

SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert Counties is making a variety of sizes. The main ones being Adult Medium (6x11) and Adult Large (7x12), with also a smaller portion of Adult Small (5x10) and kid's ones. There are multiple different patterns that will hopefully bring some color and smiles to someone's day! 

We are all in this together and together we can do anything! SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert Counties hopes everything is safe and healthy during this difficult time.

Keeping You and Your Work Community Safe

3/23/2020 (Permalink)

CDC recommendation from Governor Hogan Stay Safe & Healthy

During this unprecedented time, it is important that we are keeping our workspace safe! 

Here are a couple things as a business we are during and encourage you to do the same.

Practice good hygiene:

  • Stop shaking hands
  • Wash hands frequently and use hand sanitizer 
  • Avoid touching your face including nose, eyes & mouth
  • Cover your coughs and sneezes 
  • Disinfect highly touched areas like doorknobs, tables, desks, handrails and keyboards/tablets regularly 
  • Open windows or adjust air conditioning to increase ventilation 

Hold virtual meetings / avoid traveling

  • Use videoconferencing 
  • If not possible, hold meetings in open, well ventilated areas 
  • Postpone large meetings or travels

Stay home if you are...

  • Able to work virtual 
  • Feeling sick
  • Have a household member who is feeling sick

The safety and health of our employees and those around us are very important to us. We went to make sure everyone is staying safe during this uncertainty time and we hope you can follow the same!

We Are Cleaning Experts

3/17/2020 (Permalink)

corona virus biology with HERE TO HElP SERVPRO, always HERE TO HELP

SERVPRO is Here to Help during this time of need

During this unprecedented time caused by the global pandemic of coronavirus, this is a reminder to our customers that we are specialists in cleaning services, and we adhere to the highest cleaning and sanitation standards.

Specialized Training

We are prepared to clean and disinfect your home or business, according to protocols set forth by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. We have years of experience in dealing with biological contaminants, and we will go beyond the scope of work that regular janitorial staff perform on a daily basis.

The CDC encourages cleaning of high-touch surfaces such as counters, tabletops, doorknobs, light switches, bathroom fixtures, toilets, phones, keyboards, tablets and tables. Other spaces mentioned in the CDC’s guidance for commercial spaces include:

  • Kitchen/Food Areas
  • Bathrooms
  • Schools/Classrooms
  • Offices
  • Retail Spaces
  • Water Fountains
  • Shelving/Racks
  • Sales Counters
  • Carpets and Rugs
  • Stair Handrails
  • Elevator Cars
  • Playground Equipment
  • Fitness Equipment

Specialized Products

The CDC recommends usage of a labeled hospital-grade disinfectant with claims against similar pathogens to the coronavirus. Multiple products in the SERVPRO product line carry the EPA-approved emerging pathogens claims. While there is currently no product tested against this particular strain of the coronavirus, we are following all guidelines as provided by the CDC and local authorities.

Call Today for a Proactive Cleaning

If your home or business needs deep cleaning services, call the experts today – [SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert Counties, 301-862-9500 or 410-535-4733]

20% of Carpet Cleaning & Lock Yourself In For One In the Fall For The SAME Price

3/12/2020 (Permalink)

yellow flowers with sky background and SERVPRO house with franchise names and spring carpet cleaning special written in white 20% of Carpet Cleaning AND lock yourself in for a Carpet Cleaning in the Fall for the SAME price if scheduled before Christmas!

Spring is just around the corner! Flowers are starting bloom and we are already feeling the warmer temperatures.

Have you started to think about when you are going to get started on your Spring cleaning!? Well let SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert Counties get you started!

SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert Counties is offering a special that you will NOT want to pass up on. 

20% off Carpet Cleaning AND if you schedule one with us before May 1st, you can also lock yourself in for another Carpet Cleaning in the Fall for the SAME price as long as you schedule it before Christmas. 

Give us a call and schedule your cleanings today at 301-862-9500 or 410-535-4733! 

Why Should You Sleep With Your Bedroom Doors Shut In Prince Frederick?

3/3/2020 (Permalink)

UL FSRI logo Close Your Doors!

As a kid, did you prefer your bedroom door shut or closed when you were sleeping? As you got older, did those habits change. And now maybe as a parent, do you shut your kids door or shut yours? 

While I am sure there are some pros and cons of sleeping with your bedroom door shut, today I would like to highlight a key reasons why you should sleep with your bedroom door shut, that being in case of a fire.

According to, UL's Firefighters Safety Research Institution (FSRI), only 29% of people close their door while they are sleeping. Having a closed door can be the difference between 1000 degree temperatures and 100. A door closed is critical to ones survival when it comes to a fire. Most people see that there is smoke and they want to get the smoke out so they open a door or a window but really what they are doing is feeding the fire. Fires need oxygen to survive, the second you open the door or window you may be letting the smoke out but you are letting the air in, giving the fire exactly what it needs to grow larger and move faster. A closed door can give you those extra seconds you need to get yourself out of the house. 

The FSRI has continued to promote the Close Your Door public fire safety campaign which give real life examples of how closing your doors can make all the difference when it comes to a fire. For more information check out their site, https://closeyourdoor.org/

Have You Cleaned Your Dunkirk Home's Exhaust Fans?

2/13/2020 (Permalink)

soot all over small bathroom Exhaust Fan Fire

When you are doing your daily, weekly, monthly or even seasonal cleaning, does cleaning your bathroom exhaust fans ever cross your mind?

If it has been over 6 months or you never have clean your exhaust fans at all, you should get to it right away. Exhaust fans present great fire hazards. An exhaust fan is used to eliminate steam from the bathroom that cause fogged mirrors, windows and damp walls as well as remove odors. You can imagine what is passing through those fans and over time the lint that is building up. Build-up of lint can cause the fan to become over-heated igniting the lint, plastic fan blades and the combustible wood structure. 

Some newer exhaust fans have a sensor that will automatically turn off the fan if it starts to over-heat but with that being said you should not always rely on it. It is important that you clean and maintain your exhaust fans twice a year. If you can see lint building up on the outside of the fan, it is time for a deep cleaning! If you start to notice a bad smell or hear a notice, it may be time to replace the fan. 

Don't let the small things go unnoticed!

Prevent Your Pipes From Freezing!

1/7/2020 (Permalink)

ice built up around pipes that are frozen Frozen disaster

You won't think it will happen to you, until you go to wash your hands and the water does not come out. With temperatures dropping in the next couple of days it is important to take the necessary precautions to prevent your pipes from freezing and potentially bursting. 

So what do you do?!

  • Open cabinets in your kitchen and bathrooms where the pipes are to allow heat to reach your pipes.
  • Let water drip from your faucets. The constant flow of water, even if it is at a drip, will keep the water from becoming stagnate and freezing 
  • Keep your thermostat at a steady temperature. You want there to be a constant flow of warm heat circulating throughout your home.
  • Look into adding insulation in your attic, basement or crawl spaces and seal off any draft areas such as windows or doors. 

While some of these task may cost you a couple extra dollars at the end of the month, you will feel much better about paying that bill than paying the bill when your pipes burst and flood your home.  

What if you come home and you notice that your pipes have frozen? There is still time to save them!

  • Make sure all cabinet doors in kitchen and bathroom.
  • Turn on the faucets to allow the flow of water once the water begins to melt.
  • Use a space heater warm up the pipes or wrap a heating pad around the pipe to get the water thawed out.
  • Apply heat until the full pressure of the water is restored. 

The New Decade: 2020

12/27/2019 (Permalink)

Black background with fireworks gold sparkly numbers 2020 This New Year is your year! This decade is your decade!

The New Year is right around the corner and this year we turn over a new decade. As the days are winding down, people have started to reminisce on all that the new year has brought to them. Most are all the amazing things that have happen and some are the things we wish we could change. Although we all know leaving things in the past is easier to say than do... it is time to leave the bad things in the past and look for the future!

Have you started thinking about what you want to accomplish, create or resolute in the New Year? Let's do it together!

  • Become an expert! We all have thing we are good at and things that we could be better at. Write them down, pick one or a couple and use the year to become an expert at them.
  • Highlight your traits. Do you have a trait about yourself that you feel sometimes you don't apply it to yourself well enough? Focus on it, learn ways in which you can make that trait stand out among the others.  
  • Get rid of the old! Don't bring the negative aspects in your life with you into the new year. Trade a bad habit with a good one and a negative person with a positive one. 
  • Small accomplishments matter. Some days will be harder than other but don't doubt yourself. Success takes time and failure means you are trying. Be patient and understanding. 
  • Make a goal each day! They can be a small as making your bed in the morning or washing your hair. Little goals can be both mind and life changing. 
  • Try something you said you would never try. Step out of your comfort zone. Fear is often what stops people, don't let it stop you. Use that fear as motivation and energy to do it!
  • Be grateful. The journey is long, tiring and rewarding. Let the people who were brave enough to take the journey with you know how much they mean to you and how much you appreciate their presences. 

The good life is at your finger tips. Whether you grab on and hold tight or let it slip away is on you. Go into this New Year looking for the best and that is what you will get. 

Have You Thought About Winterizing Your Business?

12/12/2019 (Permalink)

snow flakes and ice on a window zoomed in Is Your Business Prepared For December 21st?

Winter is coming quick and we want to make sure you are prepared! These simple procedures will help keep your business both safe and warm this winter season. 

  • Install weather stripping, insulation, and storm windows to keep needed heat in.
  • Clean out gutters and inspect your roof to ensure that there are no needed repairs.
  • Remove any broken tree limbs that could fall due to weather such as wind, rain, ice and snow. 
  • Have your heating system serviced to ensure it is working properly.
  • Test your smoke detectors
  • Identify any potential flood hazards and ensure the proper flow of drainage systems. 
  • Install mats and/or carpets in areas where water could be present. As well as check handrails and steps to avoid slipping hazards. 

December 21st is coming up quick! Implement those steps above and give us a call to get your business set up with a Emergency Ready Profile. 

Winter Is Coming!!

12/12/2019 (Permalink)

icicles hanging down from a homes with big Christmas lights and mountain back ground Is Your Home Prepared?

Two days ago Southern Maryland saw its first glimpse of snow! December 21st is coming faster than we know it. You already are worried about how we can possibly see it through another cold winter, you don't want the extra task of getting your home fixed if a tragedy were to arise. Protecting your home this winter is a must! 

PIPES:

  • When water freezes, it expands. Therefore, if you have water in your pipes that freeze, your pipes could crack and burst. A burst pipe can cause massive destruction within your home. 
    • To Avoid:
      • Drain water from outdoor faucets and sprinkler systems.
      • Protect water pipes that run through unheated areas of your home with insulation.
      • Know where your water shut off valve is
      • If you notice your water stops running, open cabinet doors where pipes are located to allow the flow of heat to reach the pipes to hopefully unfreeze the water before the pipes burst or crack.

ICE DAMS

  • Ice dams form when melted snow flows to your roof's edge and refreezes. Which then creates a later problem when other snow melts and does not have an area to properly drain. 
    • To Avoid:
      • Make sure gutters are clear of any dirt or debris that could potentially cause a clog
      • Make sure all possible leaks or cracks are sealed

FIREPLACE

  • Fireplaces are not only decorative for your home but are also a large part in keeping your home warm and cozy. 
    • Before Use:
      • Clean out soot and other debris
      • Close flue when fireplace is not in use to keep cold air from coming in

Snowy Driving In St. Mary's and Calvert Counties

12/10/2019 (Permalink)

drive safely written with a frosty snow scene in the background A smart driver is a good driver!

Driving period can be dangerous and frightening to many and factoring in bad weather only makes it worse. According to research that was done by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, more than 2,000 road deaths every winter are factored in by winter storms, bad weather and sloppy road conditions. 

It is important every day when you are driving that you drive with caution and awareness especially when there is snow on the ground. We want everyone to get home to their families at the end of the day. Follow our snowy driving safety tips will help make that possible. 

  • If you are not comfortable driving in the snow, STAY HOME! 
  • Drive slowly and with caution. Accelerate and decelerate appropriately. There is no need to hurry
  • Increase your following distance. Remember it takes longer to stop on ice or snow.
  • Keep contact with your brake. Have your heel on the floor and ball of foot on the petal. 
  • Try to always be moving. Unless you have to stop try to maintain a low speed as it is harder to regain traction at a complete stop. 
  • Don't apply extra power as that will only cause your tires to spin
  • Let go of gas when you are traveling downhill. Too much speed will make it harder to stop and easier to spin out.
  • Don't stop going up a hill, you will get stuck. 

A smart driver is a good driver. Be safe while driving and remember that your not only in the hands of your life on the road, but the others around you. 

15% Off Duct, Carpet and/or Upholstery Cleaning

12/3/2019 (Permalink)

Holiday themed card with red ornaments and tag with SERVPRO logo. Holiday's special written with wooden background. Holiday Special: 15% Off Duct, Carpet and/or Upholstry Cleaning! Schedule your appointment before Christmas and mention this ad to receive offer.

Can you believe that we have entered the countdown stage for the holidays!?

It seems like just yesterday we were packing our bags for a weekend trip to the beach and now we are packing our bags for a long day at the office. The never-ending list of things that need to get done before the holidays come rolling through seem to only be getting longer. And with our daylight coming to an end by five, it seems that our days are only getting shorter. 

Here at SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert Counties we would like to spread our Holiday cheer and tackle some of the items on your list for a great deal. We are offering a limited time holiday special of 15% off any duct, carpet and/or upholstery cleaning if you schedule an appointment before Christmas and mention this ad!

We know cleaning is the last thing one wants to worry about with the other long list of items that need to be completed during such a busy time. But also understand that it is a vital part of the list. Allowing us to take care of some of your household cleaning will allot that extra time you need for different tasks while making sure your ducts, carpet and upholsteries are well taken care of. We will make sure that you are nothing but satisfied during this holiday season. 

Give Thanks & Use Our Turkey Safety Tips

11/25/2019 (Permalink)

A cooked turkey on a dining room table set for thanksgiving dinner How do you cook your turkey?

Did you know that according to the National Fire Protection Association, fire departments responded to about 1,570 home cooking fires on Thanksgiving in 2016, the peak day for such fires? And that the number 1 reason was because of unattended cooking. 

It seems so simple to not let should disaster happen but as simple as it is to think that way, is as simple it is for those flames to sparks. You may believe that this will never happen to you, but here at SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert Counties we want to help ensure that your holiday doesn't turn into flames. 

Planning on frying your turkey?

  • Don't use fryer inside! Keep fryers off decks, out of garages and a safe distance away from trees and other structures.
  • Make sure the turkey is thawed and dry before cooking. Extra ice or water mixing into the hot oil can cause the oil to overflow leading to flare-ups.
  • Place the fryer on a level surface, and do not move it once it's in use.
  • Keep a safe distance between the tank and the burner (when using a propane-powered fryer).
  • Choose a smaller turkey for frying. A bird that's 8 to 10 pounds is best.
  • Never leave fryers unattended.
  • Watch the oil temperature carefully. If you notice the oil is smoking, turn the fryer off.
  • Turn off the burner before lowering the turkey into the oil. Once the turkey is submerged, turn the burner on.
  • Wear protective eye-wear, use oven mitts and keep a fire extinguisher close by. 
  • Keep children and pets away from the fryer at all times.
  • Once finished, carefully remove the pot from the burner, place it on a level surface and cover to let the oil cool overnight before disposing.

Baking?

  • Make sure bird is completely thawed and dried
  • Ensure the appropriate time for cooking the turkey. Use a meat thermometer to check if the bird is cooked.
  • Clean the oven and areas around
  • Use pot mittens 

Thanksgiving is a time for family and holiday traditions! Don't let a simple mistake turn into huge disaster. 

SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert Counties would like to wish you a very Happy Thanksgiving!

Need Ways To Lock In The Heat In Your Home Without Having Your Energy Bill Skyrocket?

11/13/2019 (Permalink)

Save heat energy saving and recycle symbol with snowflake in the middle Are you trying to save money?

As the weather is getting colder on the outside, so is it on the inside. The days of opening a window to let the fresh air in are over and the days of wrapping yourself up in a cozy blanket on the couch are in. One day soon a blanket, jacket, scarf, hat, socks and whatever else you can find laying around the house to keep you warm will not be enough and you will have to turn the heat on higher. 

Are you looking to save heat and fuel this winter and in turn save money!? Below of tips on how you can do just that.

  • Take advantage of the heat from the sun. Open curtains during the day to allow the natural sunlight to heat your home and close them at night to trap the heat in
  • Cover your windows with a clear plastic sheet on a frame or tape clear plastic film to the inside of your windows. Tight fitted drapes or curtains installed on your windows is a good option too.
  • When you are home and awake set your thermostat to as low as comfortable. When you are asleep turn down your heat 10 to 15 degrees to save energy overnight. 
  • Seal any air leaks around utility cut-through for pipes, gaps around chimneys and/or unfinished spaces. Use caulk or weatherstripping for leaks around doors or windows 
  • If you have a fireplace:
    • Keep damper closed unless a fire is burning 
    • If you don't use the fireplace, plug and seal the chimney flue 

5 Factors That Can Affect The Cost Of Water Damage Repairs

11/13/2019 (Permalink)

Here at SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert Counties, one of our goals is salvage as much as we can to minimize your losses. Although, there are a number of factors that your cost will depend on.

How Quickly You Contact Us:

Time is of the essence when it comes to water damage. The longer the water sits in your home, the higher your cost can get. 

Mold: 

Untreated moisture can lead to mold growth. In the event of mold present our water removal experts are trained to make repairs that will save you the most money.

Roof Repairs:

If the cause of water came from your roof, the repair of the roof will be an extra cost. The repair can be as simple as fixing a few shingles, finishing around the chimney or skylight. 

Basement Flooding:

Depending on the amount of water needed to be pumped out of the basement would vary the prices. As well as the damages found after water was removed. 

Plumbing Problems:

How serve the damage is to the busted pipe or the reason to why the pipe is leaking. Having regular plumbing expectations can go a long way for your home. 

November 11th - 101 Veterans Day - 2019

11/12/2019 (Permalink)

The American flag being risen to Veteran names written on a memorial site. "We don't know them all, but we owe them all"

There is no doubt, that we are forever indebted to the service and sacrifice paid by both, past and present, veterans. The courage and bravery those men and women show every day is one of a true hero.

Yesterday was the 101 Veterans Day and SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert County would like to provide you with interesting facts about Veterans Day.

  • Why November 11?: To honor the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month of 1918, the date and time that signaled the end of World War I. 
  • Name Change: In 1954, President Dwight D. Eisenhower changed the holiday's name from Armistice Day to Veterans Day.
  • Veterans of Vietnam: Approximately 35% of the veterans living today served in the Vietnam War.
  • A Change Nobody Wanted: In 1968, the Uniform Holidays Bill was passed by Congress, which moved the celebration of Veterans Day to the fourth Monday in October. That did not last long as the law went into effect in 1971 and in 1975, President Gerald Ford returned Veterans Day to November 11th.
  • Two Different Holidays: People often confused Memorial Day with Veterans Day. The difference is that Memorial Days honors those who died while serving in the military and Veterans Day honors all those who have served in the U.S. military, alive and deceased. 
  • A Nation of Veterans: 18.2 million living veterans served during at least one war as of 2018.
  • The Greatest Generation: Of the 16 million Americans who served during World War II, about 496,777 were still alive in 2018.
  • East Coast: Connecticut was home to the highest percentage of WWII veterans as of 2018 at 7.1 percent. 
  • Highest Percentage of Veterans: As of 2017, the top three states were Alaska, Maine, and Montana 
  • Leonardtown: Our own St. Mary's County holds one of the largest Veterans Day Parades in Maryland.

Remember to thank a Veterans not only on Veterans Day, but every day. SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert Counties thank our Veterans with respect, honor and gratitude. 

Don't Let The Flu Swipe Through Your Southern Maryland Commercial Building!

11/12/2019 (Permalink)

Flu Shot in blue writing scheduled on a calendar Have you gotten your flu shot this season?!

As the colder weather moves in, so does the flu. Keeping the flu far away from our office is extremely important as we are sure it is the same for you! When one employee get sick the chances of it spreading to other colleagues is high which in return leads to more sick days and lose of production. Which is why we want to ask you, have you thought about getting the flu shot?

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the best way to prevent yourself from getting the flu this season is to get vaccinated. You can get yourself vaccinated at any local health clinic, select pharmacy's and health fairs. Some places even give the flu shot for free!

You may wonder why people should be getting the flu shot?

Influzenza is the "flu's" official name and is a disease that can lead to hospitalization or even death. Millions of people get the flu each year with hundreds of thousands hospitalized and thousands to tens of thousands of deaths due to flu related illnesses. The flu shot will reduce the risk of flu illnesses, hospitalization and/or flu related death in children.

Why does one need the flu shot every year?

That reason everyone should get an annual flu shot is because a person's immune protection declines over time. Another reason is because the flu virus is constantly changing, therefore, the vaccination can be altered and updated from one season to the next. 

Can I still get the flu even if I get vaccinated?

The answer is yes. Yes, you can still get the flu even if you get vaccinated because you could have already been exposed to the virus shortly before you received the vaccination or during the time it takes your immune system to gain protection from the virus. You could also be exposed with a different strain of the flu that is not included in the seasonal flu vaccination. The flu vaccination is not perfect, so although you may receive the vaccination there is always still a chance to be exposed which can be based on your age and health factors. 

Preventative Flu Tips for Your Office:

  • Have your employees get vaccinated!
  • Avoid close contact with those who are sick
  • Feeling sick? Stay home!
  • Cover your mouth and nose
  • Clean your hands regularly 
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth
  • Disinfect frequently touched areas 
  • Get plenty of rest
  • Be physically active 
  • Manage your stress
  • Drink plenty of fluids 
  • East nutritious foods

For information about the flu visit, www.cdc.gov 

Commercial Carpet and Upholstery Cleaning For Your St. Mary's and Calvert Counties Business

11/4/2019 (Permalink)

Different types, color and textures of carpets Which kind of carpet do you have? When was the last time they were professionally cleaned?

Did you know that even the highest quality of carpets and upholsteries still will show soiling as time goes on? Luckily for St. Mary's and Calvert County business owners, SERVPRO has numerous carpet and upholstery cleaning services available to you. 

Some of our cleaning procedures include:

  • Bonnet Cleaning: A less aggressive method for short piled carpets.
  • Hot Water Extraction: A deeper cleaning method for all carpet types.
  • Deluxe Precondition and Rinse: Helps restore the deeply soiled areas.
  • Showcase Premier Cleaning: The most thorough cleaning method in the industry.
  • Dry Cleaning: For when color-fastness is an issue.

To expand the life of your carpet there are a couple actions you can do in between carpet cleanings such as:

  • Regular vacuuming
  • Spot removals 
  • Pliating the carpet to prevent matting
  • Moving furniture to change traffic patterns
  • Using walk-off mats to limit the amount of soil tracked onto the carpet

It is important to keep up to date with your professional carpet and upholstery cleaning (about every 12 months) to help maintain the glow and comfort your carpet or upholsteries. How often you may need the professional carpet cleaning will differ on the amount of traffic, type and color of your carpet. Waiting until your carpet is completely soiled can result in them not being able to be restored to their orginial appearance. Most times you are only seeing the top layer of dirt on your carpet, the other layers are hidden below the surface. 

Call us today, (301)-862-9500, to ensure that your commercial carpet and upholsteries won't lose their professional appearance. 

How To Save Water Damaged Photos

11/4/2019 (Permalink)

News paper articles all over a office room Need helping saving important documents or photos after a disaster strikes!?

After a major storm hits causing flooding in your home or office, your first thought is not couch or desk that is going to be damage but the pictures that hold special memories or files that contain important documents that are submerged under water. While it may seem like a hopeless cause to try and salvage them, following a few simple steps cause make it possible. 

  1. Carefully lift the photos/files from the water and separate them so they stand alone. 
  2. Gently rinse the photos/files in cold, clear water. Do not rub photos/files!
  3. Lay each photo/file on a dry non-inked paper towel, face-up. Change the paper towel every hour until the photos/files are dried. To avoid your photos/files from curling faster, dry them inside away from the sun or wind. You can also create a clothesline inside and hang the files from there. 
  4. If you do not have to dry your photos/files right away, rinse all photos/files and stack them between wax paper and then put them in a zip lock bag in the freezer. Freezing your photos/files will allow you to properly defrost, serparate and air dryer your photos/files.
  5. It is a good idea to have a fan circulating air where you are drying your photos/files to speed up the process. 

When dealing with photos or files that have been damaged by water, it is important to remove them from the wet surfaces and to a dry area as soon as possible. 

Damages books or files can often times linger a musty smell. If so, place them in a cool, dry place for a couple of days. If the smell is still present, place them in an open box, placed inside a larger closed container with an open box of baking soda which will absorb the smell. 

Need Help Conserving Water In Your Southern Maryland Home?

11/1/2019 (Permalink)

Rainwater dripping off a roof during a rain shower Converse water and reuse rain-water to garden your plants!

The privilege of having a steady supply of clean water is one that not everyone around the world has. It is often times that we abuse and take for granted that privilege but with minimal care and a little common sense you can work to minimize your water waste. 

Follow our tips to help conserve water at your St. Mary's or Calvert County home:

  • Turn off all faucets while not in use: never leave the water running while you are washing dishes, brushing your teeth, washing your face or shaving. 
  • Check all faucets for leaks or drips and get them fix immediately 
  • While waiting for your water to warm up, save the cold water and repurpose it. Such as watering your plants or garden, or rinsing food off. 
  • Fill your sink with soapy water to rinse your dishes and reuse the water
  • Scrape your dishes off instead of rinsing them before putting them in the dish washer. Only run the dish washer if there is a full load.
  • Switch your toilet out to a Water-Sense toilet or a Dual-Flush toilet
  • Take shorter showers
  • If you have a small garden, avoid using the hose. Hand watering your plants can save gallons of water
  • Capture rain water from gutters and downspout that can be used reused. Lay a cover over the bucket to keep bugs out. 

Halloween Safety Tips

10/31/2019 (Permalink)

Craved pumpkins on a table with fall leaves set in a spooky evening in the woods Happy Halloween, Trick-Or-Treaters!

Today is the day! Where kids are swarming the streets, running house to house trying to collect as much candy as they can, dressed up as their favorite character. Whether you are going to be passing out the sweets or going door to door with the trick-or-treaters, SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert County wants you and your children to be safe during this spooky evening. Below are simple tasks and procedures that could be important to you and your children on All Hallows Eve.

  • Never let children trick-or-treat alone! Always have a trusted adult travel with them. Bringing a flashlight and/or phone is always a good idea. 
  • Never trick-or-treat alone. If you are of age, find a group of people to go along with and have a way of communication or plan with your parents.
  • Make sure costume shoes fit and the outfit is not too long to prevent tripping, falling or contact with flames. 
  • Travel to well-lit neighborhoods or communities and always walk on the side walk.
  • Avoid walking in the street, on long trails or long driveways as those can be dangerous. If necessary, the adult should walk through as well. 
  • Adding reflective tape or bright clothing to your costume is always recommended for better visibility in the dark.
  • Trade in your mask for face paint as mask can block proper eye sight and avoid sharp objects to avoid injuries.
  • Parents should remove any tripping hazard from the front door or front yard such as a garden hose, toys or lawn decorations.
  • Parents should turn on front porch light for better visual and to signify they are passing out candy 
  • Remove wet leaves from the porch or driveway to avoid slips and falls
  • Have your pets away inside where they cannot get outside to jump or bite the trick-or-treaters.
  • Never enter a home! Candy should always be passed out at the front door, lawn or in a bowl sitting outside. 
  • Always check your childrens candy when they get home for any wrappers to look to be opened or tampered. 

St. Mary's and Calvert County Fall Bonfire Safety Guideline

10/30/2019 (Permalink)

Eye level view of someone sitting around a bonfire during the night Create memories without losing other memories and follow out bonfire safety guidelines!

There is truly nothing better than sitting near the water on a chilly fall Southern Maryland night, next to a warm bonfire, with family and friends gazing at the stars. Although it is a time to relax and debrief from the day, it is especially important to remember bonfire safety tips. 

Follow these brief safety guidelines to help ensure the safety of those around before, during and after you set fire!!

Before:

  1. Only burn dry material, wet material will cause more smoke
  2. Build the bonfire away from structures such as trees, sheds, buildings and fences
  3. Using petrol or paraffin can cause the fire to get out of control
  4. If the winds are strong, pick another day to build the fire!

During:

  1. Keep a bucket of water or fire extinguisher near by
  2. Do not leave the fire unattended
  3. Keep children and pets away from fire 
  4. Do not burn aerosols, canisters, plastic or anything containing foam or paint - many produce toxic fumes and some containers may explode, causing injury

After:

  1. Wait till the fire has completely turned to ash
  2. Pour water until all pieces are wet
  3. If you hear a hissing sound or see red embers, the fire is still lit... pour more water!
  4. Dirt or sand are also good tools to use to cool the fire
  5. Never leave a fire that is still hot!

Do Not Wait To Call Your Southern Maryland SERVPRO

10/29/2019 (Permalink)

Small water puddle on the tile floor Small water puddle on the floor the could be resulting from a much more serious issue

You know the saying, "Don't read a book by its cover?" Well that can also be true for water leakage. When you walk into your St. Mary's or Calvert County business after a night of heavy rain fall and notice wet floor, be sure to dial our number and give us a call. Something as small as a little drip or small puddle can be the least of your problems from what is hiding behind the walls or under the floor. A pipe can burst overnight and turn small porblem into a much larger disaster for your business. One single pipe can outburst hundreds of gallons per hour so it is important to not hesitate on call, even when you think the problem is mynute. 

Our water damage restoration technicians are highly trained and exeperienced in mitigating commercial water damage in St. Mary's and Calvert County businesses of all types. We will make sure to properly handle any water related damages and work with you on the best arrival time so there is minimal distruption to your business, such as overnight or off hours. Amongst arrival, we will locate the source of water and stop the flow to further evaluate the situation. Once the source if fixed and the flow of water is stopped, we are then able to begin the water removing and drying process.  

If you or someone you know is threatened by water damage be sure to give us a call or refer them our way, SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert County.

Southern Maryland Bio-hazards, Crime Scene and Vandalism

10/16/2019 (Permalink)

Although SERVPRO of St. Marys and Calvert Counties is a recognized leader in the fire and water damage restoration company, we also specialize in bio-hazard, crime scene and vandalism clean-up for both commercial and residential properties. 

Clean-up for such substances can be very critical due to the dangers that are present when bio-hazardous substances are left within one's home or commercial property. These substances can be very dangerous to one's health when these living conditions are present. Professional and equipped equipment are key in returning your home or commercial property to clean and safe living conditions. 

That is why our certified technicians have gone through the proper training and have the experience to make sure that all bio-hazardous materials will be safely and properly removed from your property and disposed following the state and local health agency guidelines. 

Our team is ready to tackle any bio-hazardous conditions such as:

  • Sewage backups
  • Crime scene residues
  • Suicide death/accidents
  • Homicide cleanups
  • Blood cleanups
  • Accident cleanups
  • Hoarding scenes
  • Animal waste/remains
  • Chemical spills
  • Tear gas Clean up
  • Meth Lab Cleanup

If you ever find yourself living or working in a dangerous enviornment due to one of the above, do not hesitate to call. We are always here to help!

Important! Good Smoke Detector

10/15/2019 (Permalink)

Having a reliable and efficient smoke detector in your home is crucial in protecting your home from extreme fire damage, your loved ones and your prized possessions. There is never a bad time to update your smoke detector and huge variety of options to pick from on the market.

Although a fire detector will not stop a fire from starting in your home, a good fire detector will help minimize the damage and can make all the difference.

Listed below are a couple of great options that may be suitable for your lifestyle (2019). 

The Best Smoke Detector Overall:

  • First Alert and Carbon Monoxide Alarm - This detector has an electrochemical CO sensor and will alert the other connected alarms when there are dangerous conditions. You can also program up to 11 locations and the detector will tell you where hazards exist. 

The Best Hardwired Smoke Detector:

  • Kidde Smoke Alarm Dual Sensor Detector - The dual portion of this detector is that it has both photoelectric (smoldering fires) and ionization (flaming fires) sensors. This device can be hardwired into your homes electrical system but also has a 9V battery backup in case of a power outage. 

The Best Smoke Detector:

  • Nest Protect Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm: If you are not home a lot, this detector might be the right fit for you. This detector will send notification to your phone when problems are sensed, including internal systems issues. 

2019 Beach Safety Tips!

7/9/2019 (Permalink)

Vacation is a time to relax with family and friends, not to be stressed or worried. Here at SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert Counties, we want to make sure when you take that trip to the beach this summer you are being safe!

Things to remember:

  • Always swim near a lifeguard, and never when they are not on duty!
  • Ask the lifeguards about hazardous water conditions and things to look out for while taking a dip.
  • The ocean is not a pool! Swim where you are comfortable. 
  • Be aware of your surroundings. Know where you are staying so if you drift away you can find your way back.
  • Apply sunscreen regularly throughout the day and be sure to drink plenty of fluids.
  • SMILE, you are at the beach! Enjoy your time and make smart/safe decisions.

July Fireworks In Southern Maryland!

7/9/2019 (Permalink)

The Fourth of July is such a great time of the year. So many family and friends coming together to celebrate our country and honor those troops who have found for the country we live in. Watching the fireworks crackle all over the dark sky is something that everyone looks for too every year and we want to make sure you are being responsible and safe with them!

Fireworks can be extremely dangerous; they can cause injuries such as burns, blindness and even death. By following a few simple rules, you can help prevent unwanted injuries. 

  • Never allows children play and ignite fireworks.
  • Always have an adult present to supervise. 
  • Never place any part of your body directly over the firework while igniting. Maintain a good distance while lightening and immediately back up when lit.
  • Have a clear open area to light the fireworks off. Never inside a building or in an area where the sparks can fall on objects creating a fire. 
  • Never try to relight a firework.
  • Do not point or throw fireworks at each other.
  • Have a water supply nearby in case of an emergency.
  • Never carry fireworks in pockets or light them off in glass or metal.
  • Once fireworks have completed their burnings, drench them in plenty of water and then dispose of them properly. 
  • Allows make sure your fireworks are legal. 

Hand held sparklers can also be very dangerous. The above steps can be used to help prevent the chance of injuries. 

How To Identify Water Damage

5/2/2019 (Permalink)

Water damage can detrimentally to your structures or create other problems if left untreated. Sometimes, water damage can be easily spotted but other times you may not even noticed. Here are a couple things to look for when detecting water damage within your home.

  • Check Floors: For tile and wood, look for cracked, buckling or warped flooring. For carpet, be aware of wet spots, gradual rises, softs spots or the smell of mildew.
  • Stains: Check for water stains around the bathtub, toilet and sink. As well as, stains on the ceilings and walls. Be aware of peeling paint and cracks in the drywall or areas that seem swollen and soft to touch. 
  • Outside: Looks for pools or standing water on the exterior of your house or gutter spouts that are not transporting water far enough away from the house. Those could affect the foundation of your house. It is important to also check your roof for pools of water.
  • Rust or Mold: Check your water heater and look for rust on the tank, which could indicate a slow leak, or damp spots on the floor. Look for any visual spots of mold that could be forming in the nooks and crannies of your home. A musky, unpleasant smell could also be an indicator of mold. 

Are You Prepared?

4/29/2019 (Permalink)

Disasters and emergencies strike without any given warning. It is important that your company is ready to take on any event that may come your way. Planning ahead is not only beneficial for your company but speaks trust to your clients and your employees. Did you know that up to 50% of businesses close due to a disaster never reopen? And that those that do reopen, it is determined that they had some type of response plan in place.

Timing is everything when it comes to a crisis and having a plan in place can be crucial to getting your company back up and running. It can minimize business interruption and associated loss revenue, as well as, save thousands of dollars in reduced secondary damages. Developing a SERVPRO Emergency Ready Profile for your business will help you know what to do, who to call and what to expect in advance which will help minimize the effects of water and fire damage. 

SERVPRO's Emergency Ready Profile is a vital component of any pre-existing contingency plans. The SERVPRO ERP addresses two out of the three main parts in a contingency plan which include, incident response and disaster recovery. This plan is a non-cost assessment of your facility, designed only to contain critical information for the event of an emergency and established SERVPRO as your disaster mitigation and restoration provider, identifies the line of command for authorizing work to begin and provides the facility with shut-off valve locations, important areas and priority contact information. 

Emergency Ready Profile Development:

  • Employee and Emergency Contacts 
  • Utility Contact and Shut Off Locations 
  • Primary Contact Information 
  • Insurance Contact Information 
  • Property Overview Information 
  • Building Access Information 

What May Happen If Your Water Damage Is Not Treated?

4/29/2019 (Permalink)

When we see unexpected water in our home, we hope that it is just going to dry up and disappear. Unfortunately, that is not how it works. Water damage needs to be treated right away to avoid any further damage that will be created. You may be wondering what exactly might happen, so below we have provided you with some of the potentials. 

  • House Value Depreciates: Water damage can show far after the event if it is not taken care of properly. When you late try to sale your home, the value of your house will immediatley become lower with these shown damages.
  • Electrical System: Water and electrics do not go hand in hand. If you have water damage it is important that a professional comes out to take a look to verify that your electrical system has not be damaged. 
  • Mold: Standing water that is not properly removed and dried can turn into mold. Mold will hide in areas that you cannot even see, which causes further damage to your home and can create health problems
  • Toxic to your health: Water that has formed within your home could be caused by a busted pipe, toilet, dishwasher overflow, washing machine or other home system malfunctions that can contain bacteria, toxics, pollutants and sewage which can all be extremely hazardous to your health.
  • Insects: Standing water creates a great environment for bugs. Many bugs need water to hatch their eggs, which can lead to an infestation of various bugs, bacteria and fungus. 

If you have water damage within your home, it is important that the situation is taken care of immediately. SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert Counties takes pride in their water damage restoration and clean up and we can be sure to take care of it for you!

Education On Fire

4/26/2019 (Permalink)

Every 24 seconds a fire department respond to a fire and approximately 80% of all fire death happen in a home, with an average of 7 deaths daily. 

In just two minutes a fire can become deadly and it only takes five minutes for your residents to become engulfed in flames. 

Fires are fast; a small flame can turn into a major fire with 30 seconds. In minutes, the house can be filled with thick black smoke. 

Fires are hot; the heat of the flame is more threatening than the flame itself. At floor level, the temperature of the room can be 100 degree and rise to 600 degrees at eye level. These temperatures will melt your skin and scorch your lungs.

Fires turn dark; at first the fire is a bright orange, red, yellow and blue colored but will quickly turn into complete darkness with the black smoke. 

Fires kill; fire produces poisonous gases that make you disoriented and drowsy. The smoke and gases kill more people than the flame does itself. 

Safety Precautions For Lightning Storms

4/26/2019 (Permalink)

The odds for getting struck by lightning are pretty low, about 1 in 500,000, but that does not mean you want to test your odds. 

If you hear thunder roar, go inside. During a lightning storm you should consider the following:

  • Avoid water; lightning can travel through a plumbing system.
  • Avoid electronics; lightning can travel through electrical systems, as well as, radio and television reception systems. 
  • Avoid phones with cords
  • Avoid concrete floors and walls; lightning can travel through any metal wires or bars in concrete walls or floors

Stay inside for at least 30 minutes after the last thunder has been heard. 

If you are outside during a lightning storm and can not seek shelter; crotch as low as you can, with as little of your body touching the surface of the ground. Distance yourself from tall objects, such as a tree. You never want to stand under a metal pole or tree during a lightning storm! Those objects can act as a lightning rods. Lightning causes electrical currents along the top of the ground that can be deadly as far as 100 feet away. 

There Is Never A Good Time

4/26/2019 (Permalink)

Could you imagine showing up to work and your building engulfed in flames or became a swimming pool? No, because we could not either! There is never a good time for the event of a fire or water damage to strike your business. Luckily, no job is too big for SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert Counties. Our Commercial Large Loss Division is composed of the best of the best in the restoration business. We understand that every day your business is put out of business is a loss of revenue and we will work quickly and efficiently to make sure your business is back in full force. Whether it is 2 in the afternoon or 2 in the early morning, we are always prepared and ready to help. So, when a emergency arrises, give us a call. We will be there fast and ready to restore and rebuild your property. 

Not A Sewage Overflow...

4/25/2019 (Permalink)

Coming home to a flooded basement is already a nightmare in itself but could you imagine if it were a sewage system backup or an overflown toilet? Not only would the smell be horrific, but they can also be very dangerous. Sewage can contain many viruses and bacteria that could ultimately lead to serious health issues. Luckily, at SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert Counties we have the necessary training and equipment to safely get rid of contamination. 

All types of sewage flooding should be considered an emergency but to educate you on the severity of the contamination we have provided you with the three different types of contaminated water:

  1. Clean Water: This is water from a clean source, such as a clean water line or faucet. Although this may start at a category 1 water, it can quickly turn into a category 2 or 3 if remained untreated.
  2. Gray Water: This water has containments in it and if ingested could lead to illness. Example for this source are, dishwasher, washer machine and toilet with some urine but no feces. 
  3. Black Water: This water is terribly unsanitary and could cause severe illness would could lead to death if ingested. You should avoid any contact with the type of water and call professionals immediately. Sources for this water could include, flooding in streams or rivers, water beyond the toilet trap, toilet water with feces or standing water with microbial growth. 

Did You Know?

4/25/2019 (Permalink)

Did you know that a clean work environment can be very beneficial to your company?

Here's why:

  • Health: Frequently cleaning high touched areas, like desks, door knobs and phones can help prevent the millions of gems that are carries on those objects. Reducing the chance of sick days and the loss of revenue.
  • Reduced Stress & Anxiety: Cluttered and dirty areas can cause stress and anxiety among the employees. Providing a clean work area can allow the employees to feel more organized and focused. 
  • Safety: Cleanliness can reduce the likelihood of a fall, trip or slip in the work area which could lead to time off and a loss of revenue.
  • Increased Productivity: A clean work environment will heighten overall productivity because employees are less distracted by the clutter and disorganization.
  • Increased Satisfaction: Overall, a clean environment will make the employees as well as visitors feel as if hygiene is important for the company. 

For a lot of people their office is their second home. No one wants to live and in a dirty environment. Ask yourself this question, has your office been deep cleaned in a while? If not, call SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert Counties and we will bring that office shine back. 

Cooking Fires

4/24/2019 (Permalink)

Thousands of deaths are caused by fires, burns and other fire related injuries a year and cooking fires are the leading cause of home fires and fire injuries. We all love a good home cooked meal, but it is important to keep fire safety as a priority so it will not be your homes last meal.

  • Be alert; make sure if you are going to bed the oven or stove is turned off
  • Do not leave the fryer, grill, boiling or broiling unattended
  • Remain in the kitchen while cooking and check regularly
  • Use a timer 
  • Keep items that can catch on fire away from the stovetop

In the event of a cooking fire, have a fire extinguisher in reach. Only use if you are confident in your ability to active and use it. While using the fire extinguisher, remember the acronym P.A.S.S.

  • Pull the pin
  • Aim low at the base of the fire
  • Squeeze the handle slowly
  • Sweep the nozzle side to side

Your safety is one of our priorities!

Preventing Storm Damage To Your SOMD Home

4/24/2019 (Permalink)

Severe storms can come out of nowhere and we want your home to be prepared and protected for when they do. Preparing your home can be what saves you from having to deal with the cost of damage in repairs. 

  • Remove Dead Limber: Trim trees and bushes around your property to help prevent branches from falling onto your home from heavy winds. Be sure to remove the entire tree or bush if it is dead.
  • Secure Outdoors Items: Tables, chairs, grills, decorations. High winds, rain or hail can damage or move your outdoor items. Bring them inside if you can or make sure they are secured to your home 
  • Drainage System: Clear out your gutters, drain tiles and pipes to allow the precipitation to flow properly off your home. 
  • Inspect Roof: Check for whole, cracks or loss ends that could be further damaged by the storm. Have repaired to avoid water from entering your home.

Allows be aware of the weather. It is better to take extra precautions in event of a storm rather than having to pay the cost of not. 

Do I Need Renters Insurance?

4/24/2019 (Permalink)

You may wonder if Renter Insurance is a necessity or if it is just an extra cost and if you really need to have it. Well the answer is YES! Yes, Renter Insurance is a must. 

As a renter, you need insurance to protect your belongings. The owner of the property you are renting from will likely have insurance on the house but that does not include what you own. For example, if you have damage to your property from a pipe burst, a flood, a fire, hail, trees falling or other related events that were not planned, renters insurance will have you and your belongings covered.  

Renter Insurance is afforable and will help you have that peace of mind in the event of the unthinkable happening. SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert Counties works directly with your insurance company to insure your belongings are repaired and restored "Like it never even happened." Be sure to call us if you need services to your retail property!

Tornado Warning in St. Mary's and Calvert Counties

4/16/2019 (Permalink)

On Sunday, April 14th, the National Weather Service issued a Tornado Watch early evening leading into the dawns of the night and ending around 4am for many Maryland Counties. Around 2:45am, the Southern area of St. Mary's County Tornado Watch was turned into a Tornado Warning and residents were advised to take immediate shelter. 

SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert Counties urges the importance of knowing the difference between a Tornado Watch and a Tornado Warning and the precautions you should take. 

Tornado Watch: Conditions are favorable for a tornado to develop

  • Have a reliable weather source in reach to keep you updated on weather changes
  • Have a plan of where and how you will take shelter 
  • Watch for changes in the weather. Green or orange sky and hail are tornado-friendly conditions

Tornado Warning: A tornado is in the area or radar indicates that a tornado is developing 

  • Take immediate shelter. Go to the lowest level in the building or safety shelter
  • Stay away from windows and grab blankets/furniture to cover yourself to avoid being injured by flying debris
  • If you are outside, find the lowest area like a ditch and lay face down covering your neck and head with your arms and hands. (Do not go under a bridge or overpass) 
  • Do not leave safety area until Warning is lifted 

If your area is heading into the night with a Tornado Watch in affect, make sure you have a way to get alerts while you are sleeping. Have your phone set up to get emergency alerts and listen for the Fire Departments siren. 

Mold At Its Finest

4/12/2019 (Permalink)

If moisture finds its way into your home, mold can quickly take over in as little as 48 hours. Mold can be a major health risk and cause signficiant damage to your St. Mary's and Calvert Counties homes. 

There are a few things to understand when it comes to mold:

  • Mold can present a greater risk to children, elderly people and those with respiratory problems
  • Mold is not always seen. Mold can hide behind drywall or under carpeting and can be noticed by a strong musty odor.
  • Mold can spread within 48-72 hours

If you suspect mold in your home do not hesitate to call SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert Counties. We have the training, equipment and expertise to make it "Like it never even happened." and will be there in no time.

In the meantime while you wait for our arrival:

  • Stay out of affected areas 
  • Turn of HVAC system and fans 
  • DO NOT touch or disturb the mold
  • DO NOT attempt to dry 
  • DO NOT blow air near the area
  • DO NOT spray any products on affect area 

Flash Back Friday

4/12/2019 (Permalink)

Talk about a flash back! This photograph was taken with SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert Counties original sign back in 1984, located on their present office on 235. Photographed is the owner Vince Whittles, with five of the first employees to ever work for him. Three of the six photographed are still with us today, but with a little more grey hair.

  • Vince (second one on the left) has been the Owner of SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert Counties for the past 35 years, with many years to come.
  • Frank Turner (furthest one from the right) started back in 1991 as the Production Manager and still is 28 years later.
  • Eddy Farell (last one on the left) has been with us since 1996 making 22 years as Duct Cleaning Production Manager.

Since this photo, SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert Counties has grown significantly through excellent costumer service and dedication to the brand. Having employees still with us from the start, we can definitely say that we are one of the most experienced restoration companies in Maryland. We are excited about the future for SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert Counties as we get ready for our next move into a larger facility. Relocating to a larger facility in the area will allow us to provide even better services for our customers and allow us to build our brand, SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert Counties, even larger. 

Is That Thunder You Hear in Southern Maryland?

4/12/2019 (Permalink)

With May being right around the corner, it is time to start preparing yourself for the season of thunderstorms here in Southern Maryland. While thunderstorm can happen at any time of the year, they are most common within in the months of May - August. A thunderstorm is considered severe when it contains one or more of the following: winds 57.5 mph or above, hail one inch or greater or a tornado. Here at SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert Counties we want you to be safe during all storms! 

Tips for Safety:

  • When you hear thunder, go inside!
  • Follow weather reports and warning signs
  • Be prepared to change plans if weather premits
  • Avoid windows, running water or using landlines phones
  • Unplug appplicances and other electric devices
  • If necessary take shelter in a vechile 
  • Avoid flooded areas, fast moving water can knock you down and take you away

What Should You Do If A Fire Has Happened?

4/11/2019 (Permalink)

Fires are devastating. They leave a hopeless feeling and worry of what you should do after the flames are extinguished. All you can see is the soot and smoke damage that is left behind on your ceilings, walls, carpet and floors. SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert Counties see your property restored to back to pre-fire. 

If your home or business has suffered a fire it is important that appropriate steps are taken in order to prevent further damage. SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert Counties wants to make sure that your property has a successful restoration, therefore, we would like to provide you with some helpful tips.

  • Limit movement in the home to prevent soot particles from being embedded into upholstery and carpets 
  • Place clean towels or old linens on rugs, upholstery and carpets.
  • Keep hands clean to not further soil upholstery, walls and woodwork.
  • If electricity is off, empty refrigerator/freezer and prop doors open 
  • Clean soot off of appliances and protect them by applying a light coat of petroleum jelly or oil
  • Change HVAC filter and tape doubles layers of cheesecloth over air registers to prevent foot from entering

It is also important to know what NOT to do after a fire to ensure you are not further damaging your property.  

  • Do NOT attempt to wash walls or painted surfaces or shampoo carpet or upholstery
  • Do NOT attempt to clean any electrical appliances that may have been close to fire, heat or water
  • Do NOT use any canned or packaged food or beverages that may have been stored near the fire, heat or water
  • Do NOT turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet
  • Do NOT send garments to an ordinary dry cleaner. Improper cleaning could set smoke odor.

In an event of a fire call, SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert Counties, to ensure that your property is in great hands and follow our tips for a successful restoration. 

Clothes Dryer Safety

4/10/2019 (Permalink)

Over 2,900 house fires are reported each year with the cause being a clothes dryer. Leading to an estimated 5 deaths, 100 injuries and $35 million in property damage. 

It is important to know how to keep yourself safe from fire. Regular cleaning and maintenance can be the simple solution to protecting your family and home. Knowing when and how often is a key step.

First - you want to have your dryer is properly installed. Have a professional make sure the correct plug and outlet are being used and that it is connected correctly. 

Cleaning:

Before Each Load - make sure that you clean the lint filter out before each load. Cleaning the lint filter is simple; all you have to do is pull the screen out a wipe the lint out. If it seems that the filter is clogged, submerge it into hot water and use a bristle brush to remove any excess lint. Check areas around the dryer to make sure there is no lint being built up.

Every Three Months - remove the lint from the lint pipe which is usually located behind the dryer and can be removed. Taking a damp wash cloth can help make sure any remaining lint is cleaned out.

If your clothes seem to be taking longer to dry call a professional to come inspect your dryer. 

Don't:

  • Use without a lint filter or one that is damage or lose
  • Overload
  • Leave dryer on when you are not home or going to bed 
  • Dry foam, rubber or plastic  

Rain Tips for Your Southern Maryland Home

4/9/2019 (Permalink)

Spring is here! The weather is getting warmer, birds are chirping in the morning and trees are starting to get their color back. Does it not make you want to jump into a cool pool!? Well of course that being outside and not in your home or business.

We all know, here in Southern Maryland our Spring weather typically brings a decent amount of rain. Often times rain can show problems within our homes or business that we did not know were there. Such as, holes in your roof which can lead to water damage and flooding in your basement. 

SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert Counties knows the excitement Spring brings and want to make sure you are fully prepared for what the weather could bring. 

Tips:

  • Check Roofing: carefully inspect your roof to locate any damaged area or areas that look susceptible to leaks. 
  • Check Door and Windows: make sure no water can slip through the cracks of your window sills or under your doors. An easy fix could be purchasing waterproof sealer.
  • Clear Gutters: gutters tend to get clogged with leaves and debris stopping the water being able to flow proper off the roof which can cause flooding or even in caving your roof. Check your gutters every couple of weeks, especially after a storm bringing a lot of rain and/or wind.
  • Garden: heavy mulch or hay along your property helps reduce the effect rain has on soil.

Here at SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert Counties we want to quickly Cleanup and Restore any small disaster before they become a big disaster. SERVPRO is always here to help. In result of an emergency or a simple question give us a call!

What Can SERVPRO Do For You?

4/8/2019 (Permalink)

Did you know that SERVPRO has over 1,700 Franchises in the United States and Canada!? Or that SERVPRO is a trusted leader in the restoration industry and are the preferred vendor for many National and Local Insurance Companies!? 

Our highly trained restoration technicians are dedicated to responding faster to any disaster. We provide 24 hour services with experts that are highly qualified and trained to properly take care of your cleaning and restoration needs. 

We are here to take the stress and worry you may have when a disaster occurs and make it "Like it never even happened." You can depend on us for services to your residential and commercial properties that include but are not limited too: 

  • Fire Damage Restoration
  • Water Damage Restoration
  • Mold Remediation
  • Storm Damage Restoration
  • Carpet Cleaning
  • Air Duct Cleaning
  • Cleaning Services 
  • Building Services 

St. Mary's Ryken Hall of Fame

10/31/2018 (Permalink)

St. Mary's Ryken Hall of Fame

On October 26th, 2018 Vince Whittles, SERVPRO of St Mary's County owner was inducted into the St. Mary's Ryken High School Athletic Hall of Fame.

Vince began coaching at St. Mary's Ryken during the 1988 season.  Over the past 30 years he has had a distinguished career coaching the wrestling team.  During his tenure, SMR has won the "B" Division State Championship and taken various wrestlers to win first in WCAC, State and National Prep-All-American Championships.  Overall, the wrestling coaching staff have produced ten WCAC Champions, four Maryland State Champs, five All-Americans and one National Prep champion.  In addition, Vince has coached three Nationally Ranked Wrestles.  

We couldn't be more proud of the example set by Mr. Vince Whittles.

Top Performer

10/19/2018 (Permalink)

Top Performer

SERVPRO of St. Mary's County is honored to be heading to Las Vegas, Nevada for the Crawford Contractor Connection top performer symposium.  SERVPRO of St. Mary's County has been a member of the Crawford Contractor Connection network for over 15 years and this is the first time the Top Performer award has been received.  Our General Manager, Chad Day, Will be flying to Las Vegas for a two day seminar and round table discussion about  the industry and the services we provide.  We are looking forward to the opportunity to spend time with other top performing SERVPROs which will allows us to further expand our knowledge base and improve the level of service we can provide.  SERVPRO of St. Mary's County is excited about any opportunity that helps us make it "Like it never even happened."

It's the people

10/8/2018 (Permalink)

Crew

Here at SERVPRO of St. Mary's County we often get the question of Why SERVPRO?  What is that SERVPRO can do differently than all the other cleaning and restoring companies out there.  The answer to the questions always starts the same way, with the list of all the training and certifications held by SERVPRO employees, the systematic process that are used to manage different projects, and the support provided by corporate and the SERVPRO network.  While those are all valuable assets what truly sets SERVPRO of St. Mary's County apart is the people.  Between the office manager, production manager and four crew chiefs they average 15 years of experience just with SERVPRO.  This amount of experience provides them all of the tools and knowledge necessary to handle project of any type or size.  Wether its routine carpet cleaning or a large commercial water or fire damage, the crew at SERVPRO of St. Mary's County has the experience to make it "Like it never even happened." 

Trauma Cleanup

4/2/2018 (Permalink)

Trauma Scene

Due to its uncomfortable nature, Trauma scene cleanup is a topic that is rarely considered until something happens. 

Once the need for trauma scene cleaning is required it is generally accompanied by a high level of emotional distress, which is compounded by the fact that most people have no idea what options they have.  

That's where the Trauma Scene and Bio-recovery experts at SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert County come in.  SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert has been providing trauma scene cleaning services in St. Mary's and Calvert county for more than 15 years.  SERVPRO production managers have been independently trained and certified through the American Bio Recovery Association.  This training allows them to provide the highest level of technical expertise and professional service.

SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert County sincerely hopes that no-one ever has to deal with a trauma scene situation.  But, we take pride in knowing that, if the unthinkable happens, we are always here to help. 

HVAC system cleaning

12/1/2017 (Permalink)

Duct cleaning equipment

SERVPRO of St. Mary's County just took deliver of our new duct cleaning system produced by Nikro Industries Inc.  

SERVPRO of St. Mary's County has been providing HVAC system cleaning services to the homes and business of Southern Maryland for over 20 years.

With NADCA (North American Duct Cleaning Asociation) certified technicians, following industry standard processes and using the latest in HVAC system cleaning and inspection equipment.  We are confident that, when given the opportunity, SERVPRO of St. Mary's County will perform to the highest standards.

Whether your're in a brand new home or it's been at least 5 years since the system was cleaned, duct cleaning can greatly improve indoor air quality and increase the efficiency of your HVAC system.

Give SERVPRO of St. Mary's County a call today to schedule your no cost estimate and start enjoying the benefits of clean ducts!

Celebrating 34 years in business

8/25/2017 (Permalink)

Owners Vince and Sherry Whittles Enjoying Seattle during the 2017 SERVPRO Convention.

2017 marks the 34th year in business for SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert owners Vince and Sherry Whittles.  Over the past 34 years SERVPRO has witnessed the tremendous growth experienced throughout Southern Maryland.  The business was originally operated from the basement of a local home with 4 employees and route 235 was two lanes each way.  Since that time SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert has grown to be a pillar of the business community, owning commercial space, employing over 20 people and the Whittles family has raised 4 children.  Never one to settle, SERVPRO has plans for expansion and even great involvement in the Southern Maryland community.

"Being part of the business community in Calvert and St. Mary's county has been a huge honor and we look forward to the next 34 years in business"     V. Whittles

Carpet Cleaning

8/25/2017 (Permalink)

carpet cleaning in progress!

Did you know that SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert offers carpet cleaning.

SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert has been providing residential and commercial carpet cleaning services since we opened our doors in 1984.  

With our list of production managers averaging 13 years of experience providing carpet cleaning services.  We are confident our level of service is second to none. 

SERVPRO of St. Marys and Calvert also provided no cost estimates.  This gives our production managers the opportunity to inspect the areas to be cleaned, and provide an accurate cost without using high pressure sales methods. 

Using state of the art equipment and IICRC approved cleaning methods SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert can improve the appearance and condition of the carpets in your home or business.

Call SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert today to schedule your free estimate!

IICRC Certfied Firm

8/25/2017 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert is an IICRC firm. The Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) creates the standards for the restoration industry and provides training and certification to restoration companies. IICRC Certified Firms have the right to display the IICRC Certified Logo.

IICRC Certified Firms must

• Present accurate information to consumers and conduct business with honesty and integrity.

• Require a technician on all jobs who has been formally trained and passed all required tests.

• Require a continuing education program to keep technicians up-to-date on the latest changes in the industry.

• Maintain liability insurance to protect all parties in the event of an accident.

• Maintain a written complaint policy and agree to Better Business Bureau or similar arbitration to resolve disputes, and accept the conclusions and recommendations of arbitration.

The IICRC Develops The Standards For The Restoration Industry

The IICRC has been the driving force in establishing the main industry standards and reference guides for professional carpet cleaning, water damage restoration and mold remediation. These IICRC standards take years to develop and require the coordination of experts in the field: manufacturers, industry organizations, insurance professionals, training schools, contractors, and public health professionals.

Every five years, the standards are reviewed and updated. The water damage restoration field changes rapidly with advancements in technology and science, and therefore the standards must evolve to keep pace.

About SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert

SERVPRO of St. Mary's and Calvert specializes in the cleanup and restoration of residential and commercial property after a fire, smoke or water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration and we are an IICRC Certified Firm. We believe in continuous training: from initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.

Southern Maryland Summer Safety Times

6/1/2017 (Permalink)

Here are some general tips for the summer to help ensure that you stay safe and have a great summer.

Sunburn

How to relieve sunburn and when to see a doctor because of sunburn. Use cold compresses along with creams and gels to relieve pain. You should see a doctor about your sunburn if you have a fever greater than 102, have blisters all over,or have serve pain.

Dehydration

Signs of dehydration:

  • Fatigue
  • Loss of appetite
  • Light-headedness
  • Dry Cough
  • Flushed Skin
  • Dark-colored urine

When to see a doctor:

  • Decreased urine production
  • Confusion
  • Weakness
  • Trouble breathing
  • Fainting
  • Seizures

Jellyfish Stings

Symptoms of jellyfish stings

  • Burning/stinging pain
  • Red marks on skin
  • Itching
  • Swelling
  • Numbness
  • Throbbing pain radiating 

Relief for jellyfish stings

  • Remove tentacles from jellyfish if on your body
  • Rinse effected area with vinegar or use baking soda
  • Apply cold water or ice to the sting

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