Duraclean Services

Category Archive: Blog

  1. When the Smoke Clears . . .

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    Each and every day, we turn on the news to see tragic stories of local fires and the loss that they bring to families in our area. Through National Fire Safety programs, we continue to educate and encourage our community to take extreme precautions to protect their homes and families from the dangers of Fire and Smoke. Although we have a long ways to go, we are making strides, each year reducing the number of local fires in our area little by little, and for that we are grateful.

    Fire. . . just the thought of the word evokes fear and trembling. Usually unexpected and fiercely swift, there is often very little time to get your family out safely, let alone to gather much else from your home. House fires can be incredibly devastating, but along with the flames comes some pretty intense Smoke that causes lots of damage as well.

    Smoke/soot is the product of incomplete combustion.  It is made visible through the presence of small particles of carbon. Smoke damage can affect your home in a number of ways. Since the fire that causes Smoke and Soot is non-discriminatory(it will burn ANYTHING which can be burned) it is able to destroy whatever is in it’s path and cause tremendous amounts of damage to a house. Residue that has been created through the fire mixing with flammable materials such as particle board, plastic, laminates, or vinyls, will also produce very complex and overwhelming odors that will affect everything around them!

     

    Three Categories of Smoke Residue and Odors

    Smoke odors can normally be classified into three categories.  These categories also need customized deodorization to restore them:

     

    1. Protein Odors – These are produced from burned meat, flesh and poultry.

     

    The residue is identifiable by a brownish or yellowish color and has a greasy texture. Odor removal and deodorization usually entails a complete cleaning of the affected surfaces.

    1. Natural Substance Odors – Natural burned substances include paper, wood, jute, cork, feathers, and wool, anything that has a plant or an animal hair source.  Identification is made through a gray/black residue that has a dry, powdery consistency.  

     

    1. Synthetic Substance Odors – Synthetic (man-made) burned substances encompass burned plastics and textiles.  Residues from these substances are black in color and smudge easily since they come from petroleum-based sources.  Burned synthetic residue can create smoke webs visible where walls and corners meet the ceiling and in streamers handing from curtain rods.  These smoke webs are called soot tags.

     

    NOTE:  Soot tags are often misidentified as “spider webs” which supposedly became visible because of the smoke/soot residue.

     

    Five Factors That Influence Smoke

    There are five factors that influence smoke damage and can affect the related surfaces:

     

    1. Heat – Warmed or heated air rises and migrates to cold areas such as outside walls and closets.  Heat causes pores in surfaces to expand which then readily accepts the smoke residue and odor.
    2. Pressure – The energy created by the fire produces heat which enables the smoke to penetrate into the most minute cracks and crevices.
    3. Impingement – Burned objects can hit another surface with sufficient velocity so that it will impinge (or splatter) and remain on the surface.  (Think of candle wax.)
    4. Magnetism – Smoke is attracted to metal surfaces such as plumbing pipes, nail heads and metal coat hangers.
    5. Ionization – Opposites attract so smoke webs may form on structural surfaces.  Plastic bags on clothing from dry cleaners retain electrical charges which attract smoke.  More smoke damage can be found on clothing inside plastic bags in a closet as opposed to unprotected clothing!!!

     

    For expert fire damage restoration contact us here @ 410-838-7330 to have one of our experienced professionals come out to assess your situation. Because we offer 24 hour a day, 365 days a year emergency services, you are able to call both day or night to have us start in the Restoration Process. With over 30 years of experience in Fire & Smoke Damage Restoration, Duraclean is always aware of the newest techniques and most up to date treatments to get the Process done as quickly and efficiently as possible. Let us walk with you through the Restoration Process from beginning to end. . . Call today!

     

  2. Spring . . .

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    Spring, the time when the sun is shining, the birds are singing, and everyone takes a long hard look at their home both inside and out; day dreaming about the newest trends and future wants, but seeing up close and personal the reality of the flaws that are making your home less than perfect in so many ways.

    From deep cleaning Saturday’s, to re-organizing a little bit at a time through out the week, even so, when you step back to take a look, there is still something missing . . . Perhaps a coat or two of a new color on the wall, maybe even a few new pictures or a couple of throw pillows on the couch will make things look fresh and new for the season. You were right, they do, but still something is missing. Finally, instead of looking up or all around,  you look down and realize that what still needs to be cleaned to make Spring Cleaning complete  . . . is your carpets!

    Carpets, most people have them.  In fact, home owners and renters alike seem to enjoy the warmth and coziness that carpets bring to a room. The way the look, the way they feel, and the way they smell when they are freshly cleaned, all set a tone not only for a room, but for an entire home. Still, somehow we seem to focus on Spring Cleaning the rest of the house first, and put them at the bottom of the list, waiting until the very last minute to get the job done! Now you can always go to the grocery store and rent one of those “contraptions” to clean your rugs yourself . . . but the thought of having to fit it into your car, taking the time to read all of the directions to figure out how to properly use it, as well as exposing your household to harsh chemicals, and then having to dispose of the dirty remains after the cleaning is done can be pretty overwhelming. Personally, I don’t think that it’s worth it, and that is definitely NOT how I want to spend an afternoon off at my house!

    Here’s where Duraclean comes in, we are experts in cleaning carpets. We have over 30 years experience in removing debris, getting out tough stains, and cleansing your carpets from pet dander, and other allergens that can be lurking in your carpets and affecting your family’s health. We bring our PROFESSIONAL equipment, we use environmentally SAFE cleaners, and we know how to PROPERLY deep clean a carpet until you are completely satisfied! Our technicians are experienced, trustworthy, dependable and friendly, always PREPARED to get the job done!

    So as we welcome Spring and make the transition from being cooped up with our families for the winter, to opening up our windows and doors to invite our friends and neighbors to come on in and sit awhile, there’s still a enough time to get ALL of your cleaning done. Call 410-838-7330 to set up a Carpet Cleaning appointment, and then tell us what you think. We are confident that you will have a great Carpet Cleaning experience with Duraclean Services, and that you will make us a part of your annual Spring Cleaning routine!

    Have a safe and Happy Spring and enjoy every moment!

    The Duraclean Family

     

  3. Simple Tips For a Cleaner, More Efficient Home

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    • With Spring just around the corner, it’s the perfect time for those who want to get a jump start on cleaning (not just straightening up, but actually cleaning),  but don’t quite know where to start. The experts from the Institute of Home Science have some practical advice and useful guidelines to help you get your home in tip-top shape. From the laundry room to the kitchen, here’s  a quick list on how to kick-start your cleaning.
    • The laundry room:  This room sees quite a bit of action in most homes. It’s the place where stains are treated, clothes are folded, and washers and dryers take on the battle of keeping all sorts of fabrics looking their very best. From the smallest, to the largest of families, this room can be a daunting place, but a little effort can go a long way.
      • Organization is key – Make sure to pre-sort your laundry into designated baskets for lights, darks and whites. When you’re ready, your laundry will be too.
      • Less is more – Don’t overload the washer or dryer. Clothes will come out cleaner and less wrinkled when given room to move freely.
      • Go easy on the suds – If you have a high efficiency (HE) washer, use only HE detergents in the proper amount to help prevent over-sudsing and the buildup of odor causing residue. With a regular washing machine, remember that concentrated detergents require using smaller amount.
      •  Don’t over-dry your clothes. It’s actually a lack of moisture that causes your clothes to shrink (which in turn makes people, especially Mama’s annoyed!)
      • Be sure to remember to clean out the lint trap of your dryer after every use, and be sure to have your dryer vent professionally cleaned every 2 to 3 years. This will ensure that your  dryer is working at it’s very best AND protect against a potential fire hazard.

     

    Next the kitchen:  This room is typically both the busiest and messiest room in a home. Often filled with laughter, sweet conversations and 3 or more meals a day, every square inch of this place is covered with hand prints, tasty ingredients and a plethora of dirty dishes!

    • De-clutter the countertops – Rather than displaying your small kitchen appliances, store them in easy access cabinets and take out only when needed.
    • Shield your cookware – To make cleanup a breeze after cooking or baking, line your cookware with tin foil before placing in the oven. Just toss out the foil and wipe down any spilled residue.
    • Stop pre-rinsing the dishes–Remember, most dishwashers are designed to sense the amount of soil on the dishes and will run the cycle accordingly. Scrape food off, but there is no need to rinse.
    • When in doubt, throw it out – Start clearing the refrigerator by putting contents on the counter. No idea how long that mustard has been in the fridge? Get rid of it.
    • Be sure to clean your oven regularly. By keeping the grime in check, your chances of a kitchen fire decrease, and you have the “freeing” feeling of being able to open your oven door in front of company without the fear of any “judgement” (especially from your mother in law!)

     

    When deciding what to get rid of, use the three “E” rule as your guideline – if it’s Expired, Empty or makes you say “Ew,” toss it.

    Keep these tips in mind and implement them over the next few weeks, and soon you will begin to see a huge difference. From de-cluttering to deep cleaning, you’re on your way to a cleaner, more organized home . . . which makes for easier upkeep and peace of mind.  To make an appointment for  carpet cleaning or air duct cleaning  contact us here, or call our office @ 410-838-7330. . . And Remember, Duraclean is ALWAYS ready to get the job done!

  4. Winter Fire Safety Tips . . . the “This Is Us” Edition!

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    If you spend your Tuesday nights like most American’s, chances are you curl up in front of the television watching a very popular  series centered around a lovable, yet oh so complicated family. If you’ve tuned in over the past few weeks, you have probably gone through at least a box or two of tissues AND have decided to forgo any crockpot recipes for a while (not forever mind you, but definitely for a while!) . . . After last night’s episode, there is absolutely no way that Fire Safety has not crossed some of our minds over the past 24 hours . . .Yes, I know a few months back, we did a blog about Fire Safety, and even visited the local Fire Department, but truth is,  it’s a REALLY important topic, so it’s worth talking about one more time.

     

    So welcome to Fire Safety, (aka the “This Is Us” edition). . . when the snow is falling, the winds are blowing, and the thermometer is far below our preferred comfort zone , that means that Winter has come , and is most likely going to stay for a while! With the change of seasons, comes an important reminder to be aware of fire safety rules, to remember those year round tips, as well as spending a few moments focusing on extra precautions that should be taken during the winter months ahead . . .  so here we go:

     

    Who doesn’t love to sit around a beautiful fire place or rustic wood stove, curled up under your favorite blanket all warm and cozy, while reading a good book or sipping on a fresh cup of coffee? Even though doing so may feel incredibly relaxing, it is SO important that before ANY fire happens,  to be sure to have had your chimney professionally cleaned and serviced. Also, make sure to keep a screen in front of the fire place. Although often very pretty, don’t be fooled, this piece is far more than a decoration.  It will protect your flooring from “runaway” embers that can start trouble (remember, it only takes a spark to get a fire going ) protecting not only from a possible fire, but from any damage that could occur to your carpet or flooring surface.

     

    1. Of course, NEVER use flammable liquids to start a fire, or even to keep one going, and move ANY flammable objects at least 3 feet or more away from the fire source. Once you are done enjoying the fire, be sure to take plenty of time to let the ashes cool down before closing the damper. Remember, a closed damper CAN reignite a flame, which will force carbon monoxide into your home . . . causing a potentially deadly threat to you and your family! Also, never place ashes (even cooled ashes in a cardboard or wooden box)  a metal container with a lid is the way to go just in case the ashes aren’t quite as cool as you thought they were!

     

    1. If you are using gas, verses wood burning appliances, thoroughly check your furnace out before you turn it on. Be sure to place your hands on the walls around it to make sure that no heat is coming through and check for cracks or holes in the furnace or adjacent pipes as well. As as always, keep all flammable and combustible objects far far away from the furnace, a 3-ft “safe zone” is usually your safest bet.

     

    1. Have that one room that is always “extra” cold no matter how high you turn up the heat?  Space heaters are a great heating source and can make a huge difference in your comfort level without adding to a huge electrical bill. However, just like everything else, you must be wise in how you use them. One heater per outlet is the max. NEVER plug them into an extension cord (they don’t have the safety of a circuit breaker that will “trip” when overloaded!). Be sure to keep heaters clear of ALL flammable objects, and debris, and of  course, remember that electric heaters shouldn’t be near water, so bathrooms and kitchens are NOT the best choice for them. If you do decide to use them in those rooms, be extra careful that they do not get wet, and NEVER ever leave them unattended.

     

    1. While we are using the NEVER word, NEVER ever  go to bed with a crock pot or oven on, with a dryer running, pre-strung lights (such as Christmas lights) or a lithium battery plugged in ( yes, I know you need to charge your phones and computers friends, but try to get into the habit of charging them while you are awake) Once they are fully charged, unplug them from the wall outlet and sleep with a bit more peace. Remember, a habit can be established within 2 months, and a 2 month investment is definitely worth the safety of your family.

     

    1. Be sure to have a smoke alarm in EVERY bedroom AND on EVERY floor of your home, and be sure to change the batteries regularly (at least once a year) and remember, smoke alarms need to be fully replaced every 10 years (even if you think they are in good shape, trust me, they aren’t!)

     

    1. Make sure that EACH floor has it’s own fire extinguisher (if you are a little on the paranoid side like I am, especially after last night’s episode, it probably wouldn’t be such a bad idea to have one in every bedroom either!) . . . and please be sure that EVERYONE  knows HOW TO USE THEM (during a fire is not the time to try to read the directions!)

     

    1. Know your house inside and out, think ahead and find 2 ways out of each and every room (doors and windows), and practice family fire drills often. Remember to have a meeting place nearby (usually in the front of your home) so family members will quickly know who has made it out of a fire and who is still inside.

     

    1. This Safety Rule is pretty important friends, in fact, I would probably call it the “Jack Rule!”  . . . NEVER EVER EVER go back into a burning house once you have made it out safely,  let the Fire Department take care of going back in to rescue or bring things out . . . they have the training, the experience and most of all the protective gear to be the person to get the job done! bottom line, GET OUT AND STAY OUT!!!

     

    1. Go over these fire safety rules with your family often. Don’t make them a conversation that you just check off your list every Winter, but truly make them a way of life for your household . . . Enjoy the Winter months, stay warm, have fun, make memories . . . and most of do your best to STAY SAFE . . . AND be sure to buy a new box of tissues before Tuesday night!
    2. #THISISIMPORTANT #THISISFIRESAFETY #PROTECTYOURFAMILY #THISISYOU #THISISME #THISISUS #WELOVEYOUJACKPEARSON #BESTSHOWEVER #SEEYOUTUESDAY#DONTFORGETTHETISSUES #DURACLEANCARES #NOONEISFASTERTOTHEDISASTER #CALL4108387330
  5. A Visit to our Men and Women in Blue . . .

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    Tuesday, January 9th was Law Enforcement Appreciation Day. A day set aside to take a moment to thank the men and women in Blue who serve and protect our local communities each and every day. From issuing tickets and writing citations, to spearheading anti-drug programs and visiting schools, to recovering stolen merchandise and apprehending criminals, to participating in local parades, and taking children on shopping trips at Christmas time . . . somehow, these officers seem to be able to “do it all”, and still be prepared to handle unexpected emergencies and impending disasters, all at a moment’s notice.

    First established in 1874, the Bel air Police Department has faithfully served Harford County 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year for over 144 years.  Just like other Departments in our area (Fire and Ambulance) our local Police Department is invaluable to our community. Headed up by Captain Charles (aka Chuck) Moore, the Department strives to meet the daily needs of the community through proactive involvement and compassionate service, doing all that they can to keep our streets safe, our homes peaceful, and our community at ease for all who call this wonderful town, home.

    So if you are out and about this week and see our Men and Women in Blue, maybe, you might want to say “thank you” for all that they do for our community. Perhaps a note, a shout out on social media, or even sending a lunch or dessert from a local restaurant to the precinct. Although I am sure they would tell you that they don’t do it for the thanks . . . we all know that everyone likes to be appreciated every now and then . . . so take a moment to let them know that you care!

    On behalf of Duraclean Services, we would like to personally thank the Bel air Police Department for the service and care that they give to our town each and every day. We enjoyed bringing you lunch, visiting your precinct, and meeting your Captain and a few of the amazing men and women in Blue who call Bel air home. May you be safe, may you be wise, and may you continue to invest in, serve, and protect this wonderful town that we all call home.

    Appreciatively,

    Duraclean Services LLC

    Available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year to meet ALL of your Restoration needs! Call 410-838-7330.

     

     

  6. Flipping Houses and Restoration Services . . .

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    If you are a fan of HGTV, Public Television, or a myriad of other stations  featuring Home Improvement shows, you have seen first hand that hard work, determination, and many long hours can take a house of little to no value and restore it into something of absolute beauty. Over the past 10 years, “flipping” houses has become all the rage. From coast to coast, houses that no one seems to want, are purchased, and poured into to create transformations as dramatic as the story of Cinderella! The thing is, to go from before to after requires experience and knowledge of the inner and exterior workings of a home. More often than not, these homes have flaws, sometimes many flaws, that need to be addressed, corrected, and completely renovated . . . that is where Duraclean Services comes in!

    Homes that have been left to sit for an extensive amount of time usually have damage. Water damage from broken pipes, ill working sump pumps, or roof leaks left to fester, create challenges that MUST be addressed before all of the cosmetic changes can take place. Sometimes smoke damage plays a factor in house flipping  (maybe that’s why you got such a great deal on it), there are even times that mold has begun to run rapid through the walls and ceilings of a dwelling, and there is absolutely no option other than to completely fix the situation.

    Duraclean Service has the experience (28 years and counting),  knowledgeable employees, the most up to date equipment, and the newest techniques to get the job done. From small jobs, to HUGE jobs, our team is always prepared to meet ALL of your Restoration needs. From Mitigation, to Remediation, to Reconstruction, we will walk with you from beginning of your flip, right to the very end (if you need us that long) to see your Restoration to completion.  From installing dry wall, windows and doors . . .  to choosing paint colors and renovating kitchens and bathrooms. . . to installing the latest floorings and carpets from our lovely Showroom . . . Duraclean is One Stop Shopping for both the novice and experienced Home Flipper.

    So as housing prices continue to rise, and the demand for updated homes in nice neighborhoods hits an all time high, Duraclean  Services will still be here just like it has been for the past 28 years, offering high quality craftsmanship, economical pricing, and years of knowledge and experience to get the job done! So whether renovating a Flip, or getting a call about a recent disaster, Duraclean’s commitment to our customers and to our community will never waiver.

    If you are a private homeowner, a realtor, or just someone considering possibly “flipping” a home in the future, give Duraclean a call today 410-838-7330. One of our experienced Sales Representatives or General Contractors will be happy to talk with you and start you on your Restoration journey.

    Remember, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year, Duraclean is ALWAYS ready to get the job done!

     

     

  7. Ice Damming 101 . . .

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    Ice Damming, there is a strong possibility that you may have never heard of the term before ( you’re not alone, I didn’t know what it was until I began working for a Restoration Company), but chances are that you have definitely seen Ice Damming with your own eyes! Those beautiful long icicles that hang off of the eaves of houses in the winter time, ( you know what I am talking about) the ones that glisten and catch the sunlight, making houses seem as though they should be featured on the front of a Christmas card. Those aren’t “just” Icicles, they are really Ice Dams!

    Basically, an Ice Dam is caused when a ridge of ice forms at the end of the roof (aka an icicle)  and causes a “dam.” (nothing can penetrate it) This dam prevents melting snow (aka water) from draining off of the roof properly. Once an Ice Dam attaches itself to a home, major problems usually aren’t too far away!  As heat and warm air leak from the living space below (inside the house) the snow on the roof begins to melt, and water begins to trickle down, until it finds it’s way to the coolest edge of the roof line (right above the eaves) where it then refreezes into long, strong pieces of ice. . .  lots and lots of ice!  Once this ice has hardened itself into a Dam, it becomes virtually impossible for any melting snow to get around it, so it looks for other places to seep into. . .walls, ceilings, and insulation are usually the first places to be hit, but Ice Dams can also warp floors, and damage other areas that require the immediate help of a Professional (aka Duraclean Services).

    Although Ice Damming is pretty common especially in ice cold winter months, there are a few things that you can do to help prevent them:

    . Pulling off snow with a long handled rake (aluminum with wheels) is a great start. While you are standing safely on the ground, you are able to manipulate the rake on top of the roof without damaging roof top shingles or yourself.

    . Calcium Chloride is a great ice melter. When put into a pair of old pantyhose and laid across the top of the Ice Dam and gutter, it will eventually melt the Dam, creating a channel or passage for the water to flow down (Guys,  this is important, make sure that you ASK your wife before using her pantyhose, or an icy roof will be the least of your worries!)

    .If you can, make sure the roof temperature is the same in every area, that way, Ice Dams cannot form. The key to doing this is good insulation and proper ventilation.

    . Be sure you have enough Insulation, if you don’t, add some more. By adding it to the attic floor you will keep things warm, and when it’s nice and warm, ice cannot form.

    . Make sure that all ducts (kitchen, bathroom, and dryer)  are directed through the roof or walls and are sealed and insulated properly.

    . Be sure that there are no gaps around your chimney, if there are, be sure to fill them in with a fire-stop sealant.

    . Be aware, keep a watchful eye, and don’t hesitate to call a Professional (Duraclean Services) at a moments notice.

    Remember, Duraclean is ready to go 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to meet ALL of your Restoration needs. Call ANY time 410-838-7330.

     

     

     

  8. Watch the Christmas Tree Please . . .

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    It’s that time of the year again, Christmas music is playing, cookies are baking, and it’s nearly impossible to find a parking spot at the mall any time of the day or night! Stockings have been hung with care, letters to Santa have been sent, and all of the Christmas decor has finally made it’s way down from the attic, to the living room floor to be divided and dispersed throughout the entire house; both inside and out . . . After all, it is the most wonderful time of the year!

    At the center of hustle and bustle of the season, you will usually find a beautifully decorated Christmas tree. Some are short, some are tall, some are plump and some are narrow, some are “themed” trees, and some are filled with old family memories . . . but none the less, most homes have at least one (or more) up during this special time of year. Putting up trees can be exasperating, in fact, we usually set aside an entire day to get the job done! From going to the farm to cut one down and strapping it to the top of the car, to pulling it out of a box and assembling all of the pieces, putting up a tree definitely requires a bit of “elbow” grease and a whole lot of patience. Should you go with colored lights for the kids, or clear lights to please mama? Should you use homemade garlands or store bought ribbon? How about new ornaments verses old ones that have a special memory behind them?

    There is definitely no “right way” to put up a Christmas tree, but there is a “right way” to take care of one. Every year, 250 or more home fires are started by a Christmas tree, causing an average of 16 deaths and 13.1 million dollars worth of property damage . . . these fires are a very serious matter, but don’t lose heart, there are some simple steps you can take to ensure a safe and happy holiday season.

    1. Selecting the “perfect” tree for your family – If having a real tree adds to your Christmas experience, be sure to pick a tree that is slightly sticky to the touch. If the needles are already falling off, it has been cut too long and will be more of a fire hazard. Remember, fresh is best!
    2. Caring for your tree- This is an important one friends! Although they are lovely to look at, a fresh tree should never be up for more than 2 weeks, and the tree stand should always be filled with water. It is also very important not to place your tree near a heat source, that means that fire places and heating vents are not the right spot to display your holiday splendor.
    3. Lights – Let’s face it, lights are a HUGE part of the holiday experience, but they are also one of the most dangerous parts. Broken plugs, kinked or frayed wires are an accident waiting to happen. Be sure to check your lights every season and make the investment of new lights every 5 years (or sooner if needed) to ensure safe lighting for your tree. Always remember, you should never link more than 3 strands of lights together (unless otherwise specified) and that lights should never ever be warm to the touch! Even if you are tempted, be sure to turn off your tree lights when leaving your home, Santa won’t mind, we promise!
    4. Holiday Candles – They are pretty, they smell amazing, and their soft lighting gives a warm and inviting glow to a room, but candles can be very DANGEROUS if not used properly! Be sure to use stable candle holders, be careful not to have any flammable materials close by, and above all, if there aren’t going to be people in the room. . . .BLOW IT OUT!
    5. Test your smoke alarms- Although we encourage you to do this several times a year, this is one of the most important times . . . be sure that your alarm is stocked with new batteries, tested and ready to go!
    6. Have an Escape Plan – It is so important for the entire family to know how to get out of a burning house and where to meet afterward so there is no confusion to who is out safely,and who may still be inside. Remember, you ALWAYS want to get away from the fire as quickly as possible!
    7. Now that we have reminded you of all of the things that can go wrong, be sure to focus on all of the things that are going right during this Christmas season. Spend extra time with your family and friends, make sweet memories,  give to those less fortunate, and spread kindness wherever you go. Remember in the event of a fire, (or any other disaster) that Duraclean Services is ALWAYS ready, 24 hours a day 7 days a week to get the job done! We are able to service ALL of your Restoration needs . . . No One is Faster to the Disaster! Call anytime 410-838-7330.
  9. Last Minute Odds and Ends to Remember for the Holidays…

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    Well, it’s finally here! Just a few more days, and we will gather around dining room tables across America to give thanks for all we’ve been blessed with in the 2017 year. We will dine on delicious food made from family recipes handed down from one generation to the next, we will play games, catch up on conversation, do our best to carry on with old traditions and even incorporate some new ones. We will probably eat too much, shed a tear or two while reminiscing over past memories, and laugh til we cry as Uncle Roger tells the same joke for the hundredth time, but most of all we will enjoy spending an extra special day together with those who mean the most to us.

    Although some of us live in the same town where we will share a Thanksgiving meal with family and friends, there are many of us (51 million according to AAA) who will be traveling during this Thanksgiving season. One million are expected to hit the road from Maryland alone! If you are one of those families getting ready to travel hundreds of miles to spend time with those you hold dear, here is a quick check list to make things easier for you before you leave.

    DID YOU  . . .

    1. Turn off the water!

    If a pipe should burst while you are gone, you will come home to quite a mess! Basements, appliances, carpets and furniture can all be ruined in a matter minutes, so shut off the main water valve, flush your toilets and turn on your faucets to drain the pipes. Also, be sure to turn down the temperature on your water heater, no sense paying if there’s no one around to use it!

    Should a problem arise, remember, “No One is Faster to the Disaster” -the Duraclean Motto

    2. Turn down your thermostat!

    55 degrees is the perfect setting (as long as no people or pets are in the house) things won’t freeze, and it will give your furnace and energy bill a break too!

    3.Unplug your electronics!

    Well, everything except for a light or two on a timer to keep burglars away. Other than that, unplug it all; televisions, washer & dryers, extra lamps, toasters, and any other small  kitchen appliances you have. Doing this will help lower your electrical usage, and also help to prevent fires while you are away. Remember, a penny saved, is a penny earned!

    4. Let a neighbor (that you trust) know that you are headed out of town!

    Leave them a phone number to contact you in the event they see something “suspicious” or out of the ordinary. If you really (really) trust them, leave them a spare key in case you need someone to check on something while you’re away.

    5. Be sure to lock all doors and windows!

    Burglars can still break into your home, but by all means, don’t make it easy for them!

    6.Pack Light!

    Nobody, I mean nobody wants to ride in a car (or on an airplane) with too much “stuff”. Take what you need, and maybe a little bit extra, but do your best to keep it light. You and everyone you are traveling with will be happy you did.

    7. Leave early!

    Whether heading to the airport, or settling in for a 20 hour ride, early is the way to go. You hit less traffic, and use as much of your daylight as possible.

    8. Make sure your cell phone is charged!

    No matter what you think, you ARE going to be using that phone. Whether being used for emergencies, for pleasure, or as a GPS to get to your final destination, phones are a giant necessity on a long road trip. So make sure it’s charged, and be sure to pack both a car and wall charger, you will be glad you did.

    9. Pack snacks!

    No one wants to feel “Hangry” or be stuck in a car with someone who is . . .  do your travel companions a favor and pick a different week to diet!(hint, December is not a great time to diet either!)

    10. Have plenty of cash with you, as well as an extra credit card or two!

    Hopefully, your trip will go smoothly, but just in case it doesn’t, it’s always good to be prepared; hotels, rental cars, extra food, or even a surprise hospital visit are never free, so be sure to have plenty “just in case” $$$ with you.

    11. Be comfortable!

    Comfy clothes, extra blankets and a fluffy pillow or two always make for a much more enjoyable trip. Even though you are about to embark on a long weekend of looking your very best, it’s definitely ok to “go casual” while you travel.

    12. Have fun!

    Last, but certainly not least, have tons of fun. Whether you are off to the Bahamas for a secluded vacation or headed to see all of your extended family in North Carolina at Granny’s, be intentional to have meaningful conversations, and to make  wonderful memories during this Thanksgiving season. Play touch football, watch parades, eat more, (this is the one time of year where it’s allowed and even encouraged!) laugh hard, and take it all in. Enjoy the season, and the beauty and wonder of it all . . . Don’t miss a single moment!

    Happy Thanksgiving and Safe Travels,

    Duraclean Services

     

     

  10. Thanksgiving, the perfect time to share . . .

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    “Carry out a random act of kindness, with no expectation of reward, safe in the knowledge that one day someone might do the same for you!”-Princess Diana

    What a timely quote as we enter into mid-November, the kick off  to the Holiday Season. Aisles of Turkeys and Fall colored decor are slowly moving over to make room for Christmas trees, twinkling lights, and a myriad of shiny ornaments. The weather has finally caught up to the change of seasons, and as  our days seem to be getting cooler and cooler, our evenings are becoming darker and darker. Soon, calendars will be filled with festive events to spend extra time with those we love. our homes will be looking their very best for upcoming visits from the in-laws and out of town guests, and our kitchens will be stocked to the brim and overflowing with more food than we could ever possibly eat in a single meal, let alone in an entire week! Parties will be thrown, holiday movies will be watched, and “hunting season” will officially begin . . . ( aka the season that mothers and fathers begin “hunting” from store to store to find the gifts that their children have asked Santa for on their  Christmas lists!)

    Amidst the beauty and wonder of the holiday season, November is the perfect time to look around and remind ourselves just how fortunate we are. With roofs over our heads, plenty of food on our tables, and the ability to buy gifts for family and friends available to us, we must remember to think about those around us who are less fortunate.

    Right here in this County, the place that we all call home, there are many people in need of a helping hand and strong support system to guide them through the Holiday Season. Organizations such as Harford Family House, Hope in Action, Welcome One Emergency Shelter, and the Salvation Army are just a few of the wonderful Non-Profits in Maryland making a difference for those struggling. It is our hope that all who live in Harford County will take a moment to figure out the best way to help these organizations, especially during the Thanksgiving/Christmas season. Whether through the giving of time, financial support, or dropping off new toys, warm coats, or food for a holiday dinner, every little bit makes a difference for someone in your area!

    So, as you are making a trip to the grocery store, pick up a few extra cans of staples for a holiday dinner, when you head to the mall, look for a buy one get one free sign for hats and gloves, and when you are standing in line at the toy store to buy that special toy that will make your little one smile with delight, perhaps buy 2 . . . and maybe, just maybe, you and your family would enjoy spending your Thanksgiving serving at one of our local shelters;  taking the time to get aquainted with some of the people staying there, serving them dinner, playing games, and making them feel valued during this special time of year. Remember, every dollar given, every item purchased, each donation contributed, and every act of kindness shown will go a long way to making the holidays a little brighter and a whole lot nicer for someone in need. Truth be told, its a win/win situation, for kindness is never wasted, it ALWAYS make a difference, blessing both the giver and the receiver.

    Wishing you and your family a very wonderful Thanksgiving Season . . . may your home be peaceful, your table be full, and your heart be content during this very special time of year.

    With Warm Regards,

    Duraclean Services

    Remember, No One is Faster to the Disaster!