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5 Tips for Water Damage Cleanup

6/16/2020 (Permalink)

Side view portrait of two workers wearing biohazard suits working at waste processing plant sorting recyclable plastic on con Equipment can include masks, gloves, boots, and coveralls,

5 Tips for Water Damage Cleanup

If you’ve experienced water damage at your Cashiers, NC, business then you may be wanting to get it cleaned up and repaired as quickly as possible. After all, quick action can not only help prevent long term damages, but may also save your company money in the long run. Here are five tips you may want to know about forgetting the damage taken care of.

1. Contact a Professional

Anytime flooding occurs at your place of business you may want to contact your local damage restoration service to help with cleanup and repairs. These professionals have the tools and training to help with a variety of related damage problems.

2. Wear Safety Gear

It’s always important to wear safety gear anytime you deal with a restoration. Equipment can include masks, gloves, boots, and coveralls.

3. Remove the Water

Removing the water quickly is another important step for preventing water damage. This can be done with pumps or water-rated vacuums, as well as squeegees and rags.

4. Dry the Area

One of the most important steps of water cleanup is to thoroughly dry the area. This can help prevent long term problems such as swollen wood or mold.

5. Use Content Cleaning Services

After broken pipes flood your business, many of your office items may require cleaning as well. Your restoration company may have the ability to clean and restore these items as well as your space, so be sure to discuss your options with them.

After water damage occurs at your place of business it’s best to get things fixed as quickly as possible. Fortunately, a professional restoration service can do just that! They will have the right safety gear needed for the job and will be able to quickly remove water and dry the area. A restoration team may also be able to help clean any affected items.

Consider These Cleaning Tips for Your Water Damaged Possessions

6/3/2020 (Permalink)

Bright morning sun in the open window through the curtains Open windows in your home to improve airflow

Consider These Cleaning Tips for Your Water Damaged Possessions

No matter the source of water in a home, from natural flooding to a broken pipe, there is a chance it will damage your prized valuables. Handling water damage is a delicate endeavor, so you may need to follow specific strategies. As you clean your possessions, remember that water damage repair specialists have the appropriate experience and equipment to produce the best results.

Rely on Air Drying
One of the safest options for treating water damage is simple air drying. Most items in your Ellijay, NC, household can be effectively dried.

Leather and other organic materials
Books, documents, photographs, and papers
Clothes and textiles
Paintings and portraits

Avoid damaging your valuables by drying them too fast via sunlight. Instead, keep the process indoors by opening windows and using fans to improve your home's airflow. Repair specialists also offer dry cleaning services for these materials and heirlooms.

Use Disinfectant on Mold and Mildew
Another consequence of having too much water in a home is the increased humidity that encourages mold and mildew growth. These organisms damages items in a unique way that is difficult to remove and causes the spores to spread throughout your home. Only disinfectants can remove mold on everything but paper items. While there are disinfectant products and equipment you can purchase, a mold remediation technician is best prepared for the task.

Handle Documents Carefully
Letters, photographs, books, and other paper documents become extremely fragile when they are damaged by water, so handle them carefully. Soaked papers can be air-dried, but if the damage is extensive, you can refrigerate them to stabilize them until a professional handles the situation. Avoid pulling photos that are stuck together and instead expose them to clean water until they can be separated, then dry them.
Damage caused by water in a home can weaken your most delicate heirlooms and possessions. Consult repair professionals and follow these procedures to recover as much of these items as possible.

Avoid a Lint Fire With Simple Cleaning Tips

6/3/2020 (Permalink)

Hand cleaning accumulated clothing lint from trap in clothes dryer. Clean the lint trap

As lint builds up in the trap of your dryer, some of that debris makes its way further into the appliance. This, in turn, clogs up the machinery and forces your dryer to work harder. As your dryer efficiency decreases, your utility bills go up, and the wear and tear on the machine means that it will break down earlier than it would have with proper care. Sadly, this isn't the worst that can happen. When you don't clean out the trap, you increase the risk of a lint fire.

Clean the Lint Screen and Trap

One easy way to reduce your risk of fire damage is to remove the lint from the trap every time you run a load:

  • Remove the filter from the dryer.
  • Pull off the lint by hand.
  • Vacuum the lint trap opening on the dryer if there's any visible lint or debris.
  • If necessary, rinse the trap in running water.
  • After drying the filter, replace it in the clothes dryer.

In addition to completing this lint fire prevention step, proper dryer maintenance requires a couple of other tasks.

Vacuum the Interior of Your Dryer
You can complete this task within an afternoon. Depending on how much laundry you do, this job should be done every 4 or 6 months.

  • Unplug the dryer and move it away from the wall.
  • Remove the back or side panel. It should come off without too much effort.
  • Remove the exhaust hose.
  • Vacuum carefully around the drum and inner workings.
  • If necessary, use a cloth to wipe off the interior and exterior of the dryer.

This step is important for preventing a dryer fire and also protects your hardworking appliance from wearing out early.

Unplug the Exhaust Hose
While you have the dryer pulled away from the wall, take a look at the exhaust hose. It's usually held in place with an O-ring clamp, and you should be able to remove it without damage using a flathead screwdriver.

  • Remove lint balls by hand or use a cleaning brush to carefully clean the interior of the hose.
  • Reattach the hose when it's clean.
  • Check the outside vent to be sure hot air is escaping appropriately.

As you complete these tasks, you'll protect your appliances and prevent a lint fire that could cause serious fire damage. Contact Franklin, NC, property cleanup, and repair professionals if you have damages.

A 3-Step Smoke Alarm Inspection

5/24/2020 (Permalink)

Take These Three Steps to Determine Whether any Smoke Alarm is Functional

Smoke alarms are critical safety devices. A wide range of detector designs are currently available. Homeowners may be interested in a smart detection and alarm system, hardwired system or standard battery-powered alarms that use the best detection method for a particular area of a residence. A homeowner can take these three steps to determine whether any smoke alarm is functional.

1. Check the Age

The sensors and machinery in a smoke detector become less responsive over time. Fire safety experts recommend replacing an alarm every 10 years, regardless of the battery type. Newer detectors that run on long-life lithium ion batteries must be replaced, as there is no way to replace this built-in battery without installing a new alarm.

2. Test the Alarm

Homeowners should press the test button on a smoke alarm at least once every month. Regular tests can be helpful for making sure an alarm is connected to a power source. If the test button does not function, check the battery or wiring. If a power source is available, another component in the alarm may be malfunctioning and require replacement or repair.

3. Replace the Batteries

Alarms that rely on replaceable batteries should receive new batteries every year. This applies to nine-volt or PP3 batteries as well as alarms that run on AAA, AA, C or D batteries. Alarms that run on lithium ion batteries should operate for up to 10 years before the entire alarm unit should be replaced.

Each of these steps is important to ensure that every smoke alarm in a residence will be able to sound in the event of a fire. It is a good idea to test each alarm monthly. Switch out replaceable smoke detector batteries or battery backups at least once a year. In the event of fire damage, homeowners should contact a fire restoration company located in Cashiers, NC.

What Alternatives Are There for Candles?

5/19/2020 (Permalink)

Here Are Three Options To Wick-Burning Candles

The warm glow and fragrance of a scented candle is something that makes a place feel like home for many people. Unfortunately, leaving candles unattended is a common source of damaging fires, especially during holidays. To keep your home in Cullowhee, NC safer and reduce the risk of a costly and dangerous house fire, consider swapping out traditional candles for one of the many candle alternatives on the market. Here are three options to wick-burning candles.

1. Candle Warmers

These warmers come in a range of styles to fit almost any decor. Ranging in look from lamps to lanterns, warmers work by heating up the wax to a point that an aroma is released. Since there is no need to ever light a wick, you can even use a wickless candle. Some heating elements work on batteries, while others need to be plugged into an outlet.

2. Flameless Candles

Traditional candles are not the only way to get the flickering light effect. Flameless candles use LED lights to generate the same ambiance. Some of these candle alternatives are coated in traditional wax, making them difficult to tell apart from the regular variety. 

3. Essential Oil Diffuser

Another great alternative is to use healthy essential oils that fill your room with a pleasant aroma. Fill the diffuser with water, add a few drops of your favorite essential oil and turn on the diffuser. Most models last for hours and give off a pleasant mist. Some styles light up in solid colors or can be set to cycle through various shades. 
These safe candle alternatives do not pose a fire danger to your home. With these products, you can decorate in style without the risk of a candle fire. If you already have fire damage from a traditional candle, you will need to call a professional fire restoration service to return your home to its pre-fire condition.

The Role of FEMA in a Disaster

5/14/2020 (Permalink)

Fema.gov Disasters USA Government home page under magnifying glass. FEMA is The Federal Emergency Management Agency FEMA has many roles in a disaster

The Federal Emergency Management Agency has many roles in a disaster. Its primary purpose is to provide help in a disaster that is too big for the states and local agencies to handle. FEMA coordinates the emergency response and provides resources where needed, including temporary lodging for those whose homes are uninhabitable. The agency also works to ensure affordable flood insurance is available through the National Flood Insurance Program. The agency helps communities to prepare for, respond to, and recover from a wide range of possible disasters, including tornadoes, hurricanes, floods, and large-scale wildfires.

Help From FEMA

In many cases, the disaster agency provides financial assistance to those who have suffered significant costs and expenses due to a storm. This assistance can take many forms, including the following situations:

  • Temporary housing
  • Emergency home repairs for a primary residence
  • Property losses for uninsured properties
  • Funeral expenses
  • Dental and medical expenses

The financial assistance may be limited to grants that will have to be repaid. Often, the grants come with favorable terms and low interest rates. In the case of flooding in Tuckasegee, NC, extra expenses for homeowners can rise to many thousands of dollars.

Help From Other Sources
While FEMA provides a wide-range of support services to a community, it cannot do it alone. An experienced storm mitigation company is also Here to Help. A local franchise with national resources can handle a large disaster, too, and help homeowners recover from flooding and other calamities. A team of trained technicians will arrive at a home fast and ensure the property is a safe place to work. It will then do an inspection and an assessment of the property and determine a plan for recovery. The company will document all work and expenses and work with insurance agencies to enable a streamlined claims process. Best of all, the company will work to make the home habitable again in accordance with the best practices of the cleaning industry.

The Value of Business Insurance for Water Damage

5/14/2020 (Permalink)

a young man in suit in his office showing an insurance policy and pointing with a pen where the policyholder must to sign It is hard to survive a big disaster without insurance

A business owner or property manager could face the challenge of water damage at some point in a long career. Storms, floods, and plumbing problems are among the most common sources of water coming into areas where it does not belong. Each situation is unique and some problems may even threaten the existence of your business. It is important to know how to position your company to survive a disaster. The services of a local water remediation company in Sylva, NC, offer a number of benefits. A team of technicians can arrive to your property fast, often in as little as a couple of hours, and get to work limiting damages and accelerating recovery.

The Benefits of Commercial Property Insurance

It is hard to survive a big disaster without insurance. When it comes to water damage, a robust insurance policy has the potential to help in the following ways:

  • Payment for damages associated with storms and leaks
  • Reimbursement for approved water cleanup expenses
  • Coverage for accidental fire sprinkler discharges
  • Payment for damages to equipment and inventory

In general, a standard commercial policy will not pay for losses due to flooding. This is the province of FEMA's National Flood Insurance Program, the main source of flood insurance for businesses and homeowners.

The Benefits of Professional Cleanup
No two situations of water damage are exactly the same. A quality water mitigation company employs technicians who have the training to think clearly and assess each situation, whether the damage is from broken pipes or a blocked sewer line. The resources needed may differ slightly for each situation, but the overall process remains the same: inspection and assessment, water removal and extraction, drying, cleaning, and sanitizing and restoration of damaged items. A comprehensive cleanup even extends to sensitive material such as documents, photographs, and paintings. If the problem is large, outside resources can be called in to speed up recovery.

What You Need To Know About Black Mold

5/14/2020 (Permalink)

Black mold on a wall Mold can cause a good deal of damage

As a business owner, you are probably familiar with the idea that black mold is a bad thing to have lurking about your commercial building in Highlands, NC. But are you familiar with what mold is and how, or where it grows?

What Mold Is

The scientific name for black mold, as we know it, is actually Stachybotrys chartarum. This ubiquitous fungus has microscopic spores that float through the air, landing on virtually any surface and in most places on the earth. It spreads quickly and has a distinct musty and damp odor. It is not possible to guarantee complete removal of every spore. You should understand however, a couple of important terms relevant to mold removal.

What Action to Take
Mold spores can lie dormant for extremely long periods of time, only to move quickly into rapid growth stage when introduced to moisture – growth that is accelerated by the addition of warm temperatures. Though it cannot all be permanently removed, there are two ways to effectively treat mold.

Mold Removal

There are several methods involved in mold cleanup, depending on the exact situation. A mold cleanup and mitigation specialist in Highlands, NC should be called to inspect the site. They will clean and dry any flooding or leaks and use special procedures to remove visible growth and odor by cleaning and disinfecting. Sometimes structural materials, such as studs or sheetrock may need to be removed and replaced. A filtration treatment can help clean the air.

Mold Remediation.

Remediation is, as it sounds, finding remedies to the problem. The mold specialist will locate and repair any leaking water heater or leaky pipes or valves A humidity or moisture problem of any kind will need to be corrected and a dehumidifier may need to be installed to keep levels under control.
To summarize, black mold spores live everywhere, growing when moisture is present; mold can cause a good deal of damage; a professional mold cleanup team is necessary to remove and remediate the situation. Fast action on the part of the company’s facility coordinator is essential to minimize the damage.

Is Security Fencing Necessary After a Fire?

4/21/2020 (Permalink)

Private property in the forest angle shot A security fence should be an important part of the solution

Once the fire in your commercial building in Hayesville, NC has been put out, you need to call your insurance agent right away. There are many items you’ll need to discuss regarding your claim, but you might not think about fencing the property before renovations take place. A security fence is necessary for a number of reasons in order to protect your property.

Why Do You Need Security Fencing After a Fire

Protect against vandals and thieves - If your damaged property is left unprotected and open to the elements, it’s an invitation for looters and even those looking for a temporary home. An uninviting fence around the property will discourage vandalism and theft.
Keep wild animals out - Raccoons, possums and other wild animals will have a field day in your building if you leave it unprotected.
Protect against possible injuries and lawsuits - Kids, and even nosy adults can be intrigued by a deserted building. Chances are high that someone poking around the property would trip and fall, hurting themselves. You don’t want to worry about potential lawsuits on top of everything else.
Maintain compliance with your insurance company - Most likely your coverage depends on securing the property before renovations can take place. It may be very difficult to get reimbursed for repairs on any damage that occurred after the fire, so you should never go without installing a security fence.

How Do I Go About Installing a Fence?
Your insurance agent should be able to give you recommendations on the best type of fencing for your property. You will need to consider the size of the property, as well as the location when making your decision. A variety of materials can be effective, including:

  • Chain link fencing
  • Wire mesh fence
  • Wood slats and picket panels

After a fire, there are many problems you need to solve. A security fence should be an important part of the solution.

Business Interruption Insurance Defined

4/12/2020 (Permalink)

Causes of business interruption Business Interruption Insurance may be helpful for your company

As a business owner, the future of your business is protected in part by a well executed insurance plan. You want to have enough insurance, and in the right areas, that you are covered for damage and losses, but you also don't want to have too much insurance and pay more than is necessary. It's a tough balance, especially for small businesses that may not have the resources of a large corporation. If your business faces a catastrophic storm in Hayesville, NC, and needs to rebuild, will insurance cover this? Or will this large-scale event put you out of business?

The Basics of Business Interruption Insurance

This type of insurance can be added to your regular property insurance policy. It protects you in such cases as a rebuild, and has the following features:

  • It provides compensation for lost income when your business is closed due to a covered peril, such as a storm.
  • It typically has a 48-hour waiting period before benefits kick in
  • The price of the policy is determined by many factors, including the risk factors that could result in a closed business.

A related coverage, extra expense insurance, compensates a business for the efforts and expenses it makes to stay open after a devastating storm. For some companies, this coverage may be adequate, and business interruption insurance may be unnecessary.

The Process of Recovery

Each situation is unique, and every company faces different challenges when overcoming a large disruption such as a storm. A major rebuild could result in lost income for days, weeks or even longer. A smart business owner looks at the available options for insurance to help with a fast recovery. A storm remediation team can also play a role by arriving on the premises quickly, mitigating water damage and speeding up the recovery. It could make a difference in how long your company will need to shut down.