Recent Cleaning Posts

Don’t Ignore Your Dirty Ducts

11/24/2020 (Permalink)

A cleaned duct Call SERVPRO of Ames to keep your ducts clean.

Dirty ducts may not be something on your mind, but they can be the culprit of allergy attacks, breathing problems and increased dust and dirt build-up in your home.

Duct cleaning should be done at least once every five years to prevent the buildup of dust, skin cells, mites, pollen and other nasty things that interfere with a healthy living environment. Cleaning your ducts can help reduce allergens and also remove unwanted odors.

What to Expect From a SERVPRO of Ames Duct Cleaning

When you call for a duct cleaning, our staff at SERVPRO of Ames will come to your home and complete a thorough evaluation to determine the best cleaning solution for your needs. Before we do anything, we’ll walk you through a standard duct cleaning so you know what to expect.

When we’re ready to begin the cleaning, we first look at your HVAC system and inspect your furnace so we know where to hook up our high-powered HEPA vacuum. Then we clean and cover all the vent openings to create a closed suction system. After that, we hook the vacuum into the main line running from the furnace. We run air lines from an air compressor outside to push the dust and debris to the HEPA filtering system. Once we clean and inspect all the runs, we close the system, clean the furnace and replace the old filter.

After the cleaning we talk with you about checking the filter in 5-7 days to make sure it’s still clean. Then we walk through the entire home to double check that we’ve picked up all our equipment and left your home undisturbed.

If you live in Boone or Story County and it’s been quite a while since you’ve had your ducts cleaned, or if you’ve never had them cleaned, give SERVPRO of Ames a call. We’re certified technicians with the expertise to properly and thoroughly clean your ducts. You’ll notice the improvement clean ducts make on your indoor environment.

Spring Cleaning of the Hoarder

2/9/2020 (Permalink)

A bedroom cluttered with clothes and other miscellaneous items A cluttered space can lead to a cluttered mind, handle the mess and avoid a fire. Need help? Contact SERVPRO of Ames at (515) 233 4544!

We may not all know people who are hoarders, but for those who do it can be incredibly frustrating to see someone keeping items that are completely unnecessary and rarely if ever, used. However, hoarders are often very reluctant to get rid of anything, which makes it difficult to help them. We just want the best for the people we care about. Spring cleaning season is an ideal time to talk to the hoarders in your life and see if they would be willing to accept some hoarding clean up help. If so, these tips on how to help a hoarder can guide your interactions as you work together on some spring cleaning.

Recognize the signs of a serious hoarding disorder
While hoarding may look to outsiders like someone just hasn’t gotten around to getting rid of items in their home, it can actually be a psychological disorder. In many cases, people who are extreme hoarders are psychologically diagnosed with obsessive-compulsive disorder. This comes out in the form of compulsive hoarding, and it’s not something you can just solve by going in and cleaning up the house.

If the person you would like to help has signs of a hoarding disorder, you should direct them to get psychological counseling to address that side of the problem. You can help by finding a counselor in your area who has experience with compulsive hoarding. Then when the time comes, you can offer your help with the actual hoarding clean up.

Be compassionate and connect with feelings
When providing hoarding help, remember that your main job is to help your friend or family member. Much of that help is going to come emotionally as you support the person to work through the piles of stuff. You need to be ready to listen with compassion, show empathy, and be sensitive to the person’s feelings. If you come in with a task-oriented mentality, you will likely meet with a lot of resistance that will make it difficult to achieve real progress.

Determine the criteria for deciding whether things are worth keeping
While you may be willing to get rid of everything a hoarder has been holding onto, it’s not your stuff, and you don’t have the right to give it away or throw it away. Talk to your friend or family member and work out a method for answering the critical question of whether you can get rid of any given item. Agree on whether you can get rid of items without consulting your friend, or if your friend needs to be present to make each decision.
Some common criteria for determining what to get rid of in hoarding clean up include:

  • Items that have not been used at all in a certain amount of time
  • Items that do not bring joy to the owner
  • Items that are duplicates of other things
  • Sentimental items that can be photographed to preserve the sentiment

Make a plan. Experts recommend an organized plan of action, starting with enlisting help from a group of friends, family members, or professionals. Next, schedule a date, and workroom by room, no matter how hard it is not to think of all the other rooms you must clean and clear out. Finally, delegate tasks to your group members and create a system for setting aside keepsakes and valuables, charitable/donations, and trash.

Prevent future clutter creep. Spring cleaning should only come but once a year, provided you maintain the deep clean you completed on that first warm weekend. With a hoarder, that requires extra due diligence, and often on the part of the caregiver.