Recent Posts

Rain and Rock Slides

3/23/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Rain and Rock Slides Artic Circle Rock Slide

Yes, we finally received the promised rain.  There was no where near enough for us but we will take all that we can get.  

And of course we here in the Big Bear Valley know that the chances of the Arctic Circle closing are always high when it rains.

The 18 was closed for the long afternoon and early evening so that the Cal Trans Crew could work their magic again and allow us back on the road by about 5:50.  Thank you Cal Trans Workers.  You are very appreciated.

Let's keep hoping for more moisture and for the mountain rocks to remain where they are when it comes.

Mountian living is wonderful and at times it can be challenging.  Be patient and enjoy it all!

Old Fireplaces Can Be A Fire Starter

3/23/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Old Fireplaces Can Be A Fire Starter Old Fireplaces Have Cracks

We have so many older cabins and homes in our community. Many of them have very old fireplaces and chimneys.  

We work with several fireplace cleaning companies that recommend a yearly inspection of both the fireplace and the chimney.  We call them out for inspections if we feel the fireplace itself might have been the cause of a loss.

If there are cracks in your fireplace and you have a fire it could get out through the cracks and cause a fire.  

Please be proactive and get an inspection!

Smoky Smelling House?

3/12/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Smoky Smelling House? How ozone works to eliminate odor.

Outdoors, nature eliminates odors and microorganisms using both UV light and O3. Indoors, most places that generate odors receive very little UV light or O3. The Odor-Free purifier creates O3, or ozone, in a special process that utilizes an electrical current. Ozone sanitizes by breaking down odors, microorganisms and other pollutants at their source.

Nature creates O3 as a natural cleaner during thunderstorms, and also from sunlight striking the earth’s atmosphere. As an example, we’ve all taken a walk after a thunderstorm and experienced the clean, fresh smell in the air. That's O3, or ozone, at work.

Normal oxygen (O2) is converted to O3, which is commonly called ozone. It reverts back to O2 in about an hour if the O3 is unused. This leaves the air fresh and clean because the source of the odor has been permanently removed. And there are no artificial odors so the space becomes free of odors, as nature intended. Employ the cleaning power of nature and create an outdoor fresh environment in your facility!

Stores have floods, too!

2/26/2018 (Permalink)

When a commercial building has a disaster it can mean a serious loss of income for them.  Stores, in particular, need to be up and running again as fast as possible.  That is one of the reasons that you can reach a real person at SERVPRO Big Bear 24 hours a day.

The water fountain at this store overflowed for a long time causing water to flow over 75% of the main sales room floor and all of the dressing room.  The inventory storage room and both the bathrooms had significant water on their floors.  

We were called in at night when the damage was discovered.  We extracted the water, set up dehumidifiers and air movers, and the store was able to open the next day!

We love to keep our customers functioning when disaster strikes.

What Mold Needs to Grow

2/19/2018 (Permalink)

What Causes Mold in Houses and Homes

Mold needs these conditions before it can begin to grow in a home:

  • Mold spores
  • A food source (eg wood, drywall, cotton)
  • Darkness (mold can't grow under ultraviolet light)
  • Warmth (mold can't grow in freezing temperatures)
  • Oxygen
  • Moisture (eg water leaks, humidity)
  • Enough time (most molds can begin to grow in 24-48 hours if the conditions are right)

Moisture is really the key cause of mold growth since the other conditions on the list are always going to be present in homes.

So, essentially, the difference between whether mold grows in your home or not comes down to whether you have a moisture problem.

The biggest reason for mold in homes is

Leaking Pipes 

Water leaks from pipes are a common cause of mold growth. The worst leaks are the ones that go undetected because they are hidden out of view, like inside a wall. By the time you discover these leaks mold has usually started to grow already.  

Asbestos! Yikes!

2/15/2018 (Permalink)

A highly-effective and inexpensive fire-retardant material and thermal and acoustic insulator, asbestos was used extensively in home construction from the early 1940s through the 1970s. However, we now know that prolonged exposure to asbestos fibers can lead to lung disease. When disturbed, tiny abrasive asbestos fibers are easily inhaled, which damages lung tissue and can cause cancer. In homes built prior to 1975, asbestos is most commonly found as thermal insulation on basement boilers and pipes. Unfortunately, it can also be found in a myriad of other household materials including: • Blown-in attic insulation
• Vinyl floor tiles
• Glue that attaches floor tiles to concrete or wood
• Some forms of linoleum
• Window caulking and glazing
• Roofing material (usually on flat roofs but occasionally on shingles)
• HVAC duct insulation (usually found in corrugated or flat paper form)
• Siding material
• Plaster
• Fiber cement siding (usually 1/8 " thick and 8'x4' brittle)
• Corrugated heavy duty 8'x4' panels
• Some forms of paint

Winter Energy Saving Tips

2/12/2018 (Permalink)

Here are some very practical suggestions for saving money on energy during the winter:

1. Heat your home by opening blinds and drapes on sunny days to allow the sun's rays in. This is FREE solar heating!

2. Close doors and vents to unused rooms. 

3. Prevent heat from escaping your home by closing the chimney damper when not in use. Just be sure to re-open it when you start your next fire.

4. Replace incandescent bulbs with LEDs to lower you lighting cost. The bulbs are more expensive but the savings is significant.

5. Repair insulation, caulking, and weather stripping around you home to insure heat is not lost.

6. Insulate your water heater with an insulating cover recommended by the manufacturer.

Winter Road Safety Tips

2/5/2018 (Permalink)

Here is a list of tips you might want to consider when traveling on our cold icy roads this winter:

1. Check weather prior to traveling and delay your trip if poor weather is expected. If you must drive, alert others of our destination and arrival time.

2. Clear your vehicle's exhaust pipe of any snow, ice, or mud prior to operating. A congested exhaust can expose you to deadly carbon monoxide.

3. Invest in winter tires or snow chains for better traction through snow and sleet.

4. Consistently maintain at least a half tank of gasoline in your vehicle to avoid gas line freeze-up.

5. Accelerate and decelerate slowly when driving in order to regain traction and avoid skids.

6. Drive slowly and allow yourself ample time to arrive at your destination.

7. Stay further back then typical from the vehicle in front of you to avoid a collision in ice and snow.

Will Copper Pipes Break?

1/25/2018 (Permalink)

If you do not keep your cabin/home warm enough to prevent freezing your copper pipes can burst and cause a serious amount of water damage. 

It is also a very good idea to insulate any pipes in your attic or buildup areas, and consider wrapping your hose bibs or replacing them with the kind that will not freeze.

If you are not a full time resident, be sure to leave your thermostat on 55, open the cabinet doors under your sinks, and if you have south facing windows leave the blinds/curtains open so the sun can assist in warming your home.

If you do experience a broken pipe immediately turn off the water to your home and give SERVPRO Big Bear a call and we will get the water cleaned up and your home dried out ASAP!

Praying for Snow!

1/23/2018 (Permalink)

We are hoping to get some of "The White Stuff" pretty soon!  We just are not too sure how much we want at once.

Remember, when snow shoveling, to drink lots of water, use your legs not your back, and take rests!

Should we be blessed with a significant amount of snow your might keep an eye on your roof to watch for snow sliding off in an area where you might be walking.

The need for moisture in our mountain communities is very great at this time.  Rain will fill our lakes more quickly that snow, but snow will bring guests to the mountains and our economy depends on them.  

Weather forecasts are showing the next possibility for a moisture event to be in late February or early March.