Utah County Wildfires

Cleaning up Smoke Damage in Utah County

The Twin Wild Fires in Utah County

Firemen in Utah County are battling with two wildfires.  As of yesterday morning, the Pole Creak fire has consumed almost 7500 acres of land and Bald Mountain lost 1500 acres to its blaze.  As a result, thousands of people evacuated the area and are awaiting the chance to return.  Firemen have partially contained the wildfires; 25% at Pole Creak and 14% at Bald Mountain.  At the time of writing, no homes have been destroyed.  While that’s good news, the fires are likely to cause considerable smoke damage to the homes nearby.  This will leave many residents with a bad mess to clean up when they return.

 

Smoke Damage

Smoke DamageSmoke damage is caused primarily because of the ionization of particles in the smoke.  Ionization gives smoke particles an electrical charge, which attracts them to surfaces. Certain surfaces are more likely to attract them. Metal objects will create a magnetic attraction, causing smoke to cluster around them.  While drywall might hide metal nails, they still have enough of power to draw smoke to the wall, causing it to form rings around the nail.  Furnishings made of synthetic fibers also tend to have a stronger attraction to smoke particles.

Because of the way hot air interacts with cold air, smoke can get into places you wouldn’t normally expect it to.  Seemingly enclosed spaces have greater smoke damage than open spaces, and because it naturally moves toward cooler areas, it has a tendency to get behind drapes and blinds.  It will follow ventilation systems, leaving residue that your vents will spread to the rest of the house if not cleaned up.    And because smoke is so light, it can easily carried by the wind, even if the fire never gets close to your home.  Even if you’ve taken all the proper precautions, there’s still the possibility that the smoke will get on, or into your home.  So what can you do about it?

 

Alpine’s 100% No-Smoke Smell Guarantee

Alpine 100% No Smoke Smell Guarantee SealThe Fire Restoration team at Alpine Cleaning and Restoration are experts at cleaning up smoke damage.  With more than 25 years of experience, we know all the tricks.  We use hydroxyl generators to completely remove all traces of the smell of smoke.  This process is completely non-toxic, allowing you and your family to still live in the home while we clean it up.  We also use an ozone chamber to remove the smoke residue from objects in your house.  By the time we’re done, you won’t be able to even tell that there was a fire.  That’s our 100% guarantee!

 

Give Us A Call

At the time of writing, the fire is still ongoing in Utah County. Firefighters are doing their best to contain them and we appreciate all their effort.  Please stay safe.  Do not return to your homes until you’ve been given the all clear.  Hopefully the fires won’t seriously damage any homes, but if they do, we’re here to help.  Whether it’s fixing damage from the flames, or the smoke, we can help you get back on your feet quickly.  Give us a call at 1-855-4-ALPINE, or use our handy contact form.  Get in touch as soon as you’re ready.  We’ll fix your home up right away.

 

Stay safe.

Bed Bugs

Bed Bugs: What To Do

“Good night.  Sleep tight.  Don’t let the bed bugs bite.”

This was something my mother used to say to me every night before bed when I was a child.  For a while, I actually ended up thinking that bed bugs were just an old wives’ tale, something mothers would say just because they said it.  But no, bed bugs are real and they are one of the biggest nuisance pests in the world.

 

What is a Bed Bug?

Bed BugsBed bugs are parasitic insects that feed on blood. The species Cimex Lectulariusin particular is known for feeding exclusively on human blood.  The insect requires blood to complete each of its stages of metamorphosis.  They use body temperature, moisture, carbon dioxide, and visual cues to locate a sleeping host to feed on.  Bed bugs were almost completely eradicated in the developed world in the 1940s, but began to reappear in the mid-90s, mostly likely because of increased international travel, bans on certain pesticides, and increasing poison resistance.

 

What’s The Danger?

If you’re worried about diseases, you can relax – at least a bit.  So far, all research indicates that, although they can carry a number of human pathogens, they do not transmit them.  While this makes them less worrisome than fleas or ticks, they are still a nuisance.  Their bites are known to cause swelling, redness often mistaken for rashes, and scarring.  Most bites show no symptoms at all, but occasionally they can cause moderate to severe allergic reactions.  If the bites are left untreated, or are scratched, it is possible for them to become infected.

 

How Do I Spot Them?

bed bug eggsIf you suffer bites during the night, it’s a pretty obvious sign that you might have an infestation.  The bites will appear on exposed skin, most commonly the neck, shoulders, arms and other areas of the upper body.  Occasionally, there will be multiple bites in a tight line or cluster.  If you experience any reaction, it will usually occur within 1-10 days.  If you experience bites, they will usually heal within a few days if you don’t scratch them.  Speak to a pharmacist or doctor about getting some anti-itch cream to help.

Since bites often don’t get reactions, you may need to look for other indications.  Look carefully in your mattress and linen for eggs.  They will look like small, pale poppy seeds.  You might also recognize them by their droppings, which will be small rust-colored or dark brown stains.  Droppings will either bead up or be absorbed into the material they fall on. Large-scale infestations also begin to give off a noticeable odor described as being like coriander.  At higher concentrations, this odor becomes highly unpleasant.

 

Can Alpine Get Rid of Them?

We get asked this question a lot. Unfortunately, Alpine Cleaning and Restoration does not have the proper training to get rid of bed bugs.  That requires an exterminator.  We personally would recommend 5 Star Pest Control (https://www.facebook.com/5StarFacilityServices/).  They have the know-how and tools to get rid of infestations of all kinds, from rodents, to biting insects.  Bed bugs won’t stand a chance.  It is best to call a pest control company rather than try to do it yourself, as bed bugs can easily stow away on clothing, moving from one room of the house to another as you try to get rid of them, and they can go for days and sometimes weeks or months without feeding, depending on the stage of their life cycle. Without professional assistance, it is very difficult to get rid of them.

 

Good Luck!

While we can’t help you get rid of them, we get asked this question enough that we felt it might be a good idea to give some basic information on how to spot them and what to do about it.  For all your other cleaning and restoration needs, feel free to get in touch (https://www.alpinecleaning.com/contact-us/).  We will be glad to help you out with any problems we’re qualified to deal with. If it’s a pest problem, contact a local extermination company.

Storm Damage Restoration

Disaster Strikes!

Disaster

Have you recently been the victim of a disaster?  Was it a Flood?  A Fire?  Hit by a storm?  Did Adrien borrow your leaf blower again?  We totally understand how that is.  Disasters can strike at any moment.  They’re hard to prepare for and costly to fix.  Insurance helps, but it still takes time for things to get back to normal.

It Could Be Worse

While we don’t want to make light of your situation, we just want to provide a little perspective.  Whatever it is, it could be worse.

A few years ago, the dam at Lake Delton burst when flood waters eroded its foundations.  Hundreds of homes were washed away.  Some where completely destroyed, ripped in half as the lake shore collapsed beneath them.

You don’t need a dam-break to destroy your home, though.  Sometimes, all it takes is a falling tree, as this report shows.  Nature is always the bigger beast.  When we get in the way, it will steamroll us.

But Don’t Worry!

Feel free to relax.  Disaster of this magnitude isn’t common.  While there are plenty of disasters that can happen anywhere, they’re unlikely to do this level of damage to your home.  With a bit of common sense and a good insurance policy, you can avoid the complete loss of your home.

Alpine’s Disaster Response Team

Should the worst actually happen, know that you’re not alone.  Alpine Cleaning and Restoration has a disaster response team on call 24/7 to help you recover.  Whether it’s fire, flood, or storm, please give us a call.  In emergencies, we promise to get there within 60 minutes of your call.  We’ll get you back on your feet as soon as possible, saving you time, money and stress.

Find out how we can help you today!