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Shutting Down Mold After a Home Flood

11/14/2019 (Permalink)

Air mover placed by a cabinet drying affected area in a home Air mover drying out affected area in house after storm damage

Dealing With Mold After a Flood In Your Home

Mold growth is a pesky side effect of flooding. Even an inch of standing water in your home can trigger a chain reaction that leads to smelly, unsightly fungus. What can be done to minimize the formation of mold, or clean it up if it’s already there? Here are a few easy tips for dealing with mold after a flood in your Burton, OH, home.

Get Rid of the Water

Get started by removing as much water as you can. Good tools include:

  • mops
  • buckets
  • gloves

Use mops and buckets to remove or absorb as much water as possible. This method is best if you’re dealing with water that hasn’t been contaminated with human or animal waste. Such water is best removed by professionals.

Dry Everything Out

Mold spores thrive in warm, wet locales. This makes thoroughly drying your home very important. Open windows and use large fans to dry the area out quickly and thoroughly. For an extra punch, rent a dehumidifier and leave it on overnight.

Disinfect Everything

One of the biggest threats posed by standing water from a flood is bacteria. It’s a must that you disinfect everything it touched. Use a disinfectant to wipe down surfaces and kill any germs the flood water may have deposited. As an added benefit, wiping things down can help remove mold spores and discourage mold growth.

Dispose of Damaged Items

Unfortunately, flood damage can be devastating to porous materials like fabric. Evaluate the contents of your home and throw away anything that can’t be completely disinfected. This includes electronics, papers and other absorbent items.
Flood damage can be extensive to a home, but mold growth can make things even worse. For minor damage, use the above tips. And for major flood damage, find a water remediation company to get the type of water removal, drying and disinfecting you need to get your household back on its feet.

How To Fix a Flooded Basement

10/28/2019 (Permalink)

Dark humid basement Recovering from a basement flood can be done with the right equipment and a lot of hard work

Many homeowners have heard horror stories of sump pumps failing and basements filling with floodwater. A basement flood can happen quickly and cause a lot of damage in a short amount of time. If your basement in Highland Heights, OH has experienced flooding or water damage, your insurance coverage may include the cost of professional restoration services. There are some things you can do yourself, but if damage is severe or you do not have the necessary skills and equipment, professional assistance can help. Here are a few tips on how to safely restore your basement.

Stay Aware of Danger

Keep safety first. When entering a flooded area, watch out for these common dangers caused by a basement flood:

  • Slippery, slimy floors
  • Items you cannot see through the floodwater
  • Electrical outlets exposed to water or submerged

Anytime there is water in a home, there is the risk of electrocution. Be sure that the electricity is turned off before entering the area. If the water has gone above the electrical outlets and you cannot safely reach the fusebox, the only way to ensure your safety is to have the house taken off the electric grid by a professional.

Dry Out the Area

Once you have ensured your safety, the next step is to begin removing the water. If you can do this without entering the flooded area, even better. A shop vacuum can be used to suck out the majority of the water. Once the water is gone, you are likely to find that flooring, baseboards, and possibly drywall have been soaked by the water. Everything that was underwater may need to be removed and replaced.
Recovering from a basement flood can be done with the right equipment and a lot of hard work. If you discover that you need professional help, water restoration experts can restore your basement to its pre-flood condition, as if it never happened.

A Guide to Commercial Storm Insurance

10/28/2019 (Permalink)

Debri blocking road during a wind storm Storm damage in Burton, OH

Things You Need to Know About Commercial Storm Insurance

If you own property in Burton, OH, where hurricanes and windstorms cause significant damage, you may be wondering if insurance is available to covers any losses. Because of the increased development along coastal areas, there has been a rise in disastrous losses and massive flood cleanup efforts. Fortunately, insurance companies provide storm insurance. Here are some things you need to know about this type of insurance.

Hurricane Deductibles

Insurance coverage for hurricanes and windstorms is different from traditional insurance. Traditional insurance policies have a dollar deductible that has to be paid before any coverage begins. In contrast, a commercial property that has experienced flood damage would qualify for losses under a percentage deductible. Here are some basics about percentage deductibles:

The percentage that you’re required to pay is based on the value of your property. For example, a $500,000 property with a 2% deductible would necessitate that you pay $10,000 before any insurance coverage takes effect.
With regular policies, the deductible applies with each claim. In contrast, a deductible under storm insurance is calculated per season.

There are typically two types of storm damage: hurricane and windstorm. Under the insurance plan, the natural disaster brings what is called a trigger. This means that a hurricane deductible applies in the specific situation. The state or insurance company determines if the trigger is applicable. Factors such as storm intensity and timing are considered.

State Differences

Hurricane insurance varies by state, so it’s important to check with your insurance carrier about the specific coverage. For example, some states allow for a higher premium in order to have a traditional dollar deductible plan instead of a percentage deductible. Other states in high-risk coastal areas may not have this option.
Commercial storm insurance is available in many states in the United States. Among other things, this coverage can help with hiring professional storm cleanup experts to assist your company after a hurricane hits.

3 Things To Know About Maintaining a Furnace

10/7/2019 (Permalink)

Technician looking over a gas furnace with a flashlight before cleaning it Knowing how to take care of your furnace is important when handling proper maintenance of your home

If you have a furnace, maintenance is key to its longevity. This is especially important if you must deal with fire cleaning or other unexpected events in Mayfield, OH. Following these three guidelines can be useful when striving to keep your furnace in working condition.

Perform Maintenance Before Winter

Before winter sets in, have your furnace looked at. This can alert you to any problems you weren’t aware of and prevent possible fire damage from happening. Your furnace has three main parts that should be examined routinely:

  • Filter system
  • Motor
  • Blowers

With regular inspections by trained professionals, you can prevent significant, and potentially costly, problems with these vital components.

Seek Help From a Professional When Problems Arise

If your furnace has an issue, it is better to have it fixed before the winter season starts, rather than having it break down when you need it the most. Whether you need fire cleaning or smoke cleaning after a disaster or simply someone to inspect that weird humming that started last week, a fire restoration company or furnace specialist can provide an estimate and help you save time.

Replace Filters Regularly

It is easy to forget to replace your furnace filter. If you're having furnace problems, a dirty filter may be to blame. Hold it up against the light to see if it looks clogged. If it does, it is important to replace it, regardless of how long it has been there. Filters are normally replaced every three months, or sooner if you have extenuating circumstances, such as pets. A company who performs fire damage assessment can assist you with problems related to filters.

Knowing how to take care of your furnace is important when handling proper maintenance of your home. If you’ve ever dealt with fire cleaning or if you believe there are other pressing issues, a professional can check them out before winter begins. What's more, with light maintenance of your own, such as changing filters regularly, you can help your furnace last for as long as possible.

3 Steps That Can Help Prevent Mold

9/23/2019 (Permalink)

Mold on bathroom floor Mold in bathroom

How to Protect Yourself Against Future House Mold

Mold is a fungus that has its place in nature but can be a nightmare in the home. If you suspect a mold problem, you should consider conducting a mold inspection. If, however, you haven’t found any noticeable spores, you can protect yourself against future house mold by following these three steps.

1. Identify Potential Problem Areas

Mold develops and grows in damp places. Examine areas where there might be water leaks or flooding, such as attics and basements. Kitchens, bathrooms, laundry rooms, garages, and walls that make contact with earth also provide a breeding ground for different types of mold, including black mold. Hidden mold can form inside walls, under carpets, and in areas that might not be visible. A mold inspection team might be needed to find some molds.

2. Keep Wet Areas Dry

Mold can start forming in 24 to 48 hours in a wet area. It can form on both hard and pulpy surfaces, such as clothing, carpet, dry wall, tiles, furniture, and wood paneling. Flood water, spills, and leaks should be cleaned and dried immediately. Items that can’t be dried should be removed from the area. Wet items should not be left lying around, and clothes should not be left in the washing machine. Remember, mold thrives on moisture.

3. Ensure Proper Ventilation

When doing laundry, washing dishes, taking a shower, or cooking, ensure your room has good ventilation by simply opening a window or two. Good air flow through your house can help prevent moisture from building up around doors, windows, and on walls. Fresh air can help reduce moisture. It’s recommended to keep room humidity below 60 percent to avoid condensation building up on windows, walls, and pipes.

You can’t completely mold-proof your home in Gates Mills, OH. That’s why it’s a good idea to have a professional mold remediation team perform a mold inspection regularly and after any major water leak or flooding.

Can Water-Damaged Electronics Be Restored?

9/23/2019 (Permalink)

The keyboard of a computer with water Water damaged computer

Appliances and devices are among the most costly contents in commercial buildings. Water is made up of charged particles that can cause corrosion to form on metal and short-circuit electronics. Several factors determine whether flooded electronics can be restored or require replacement.

Power Status During Damage

The severity of electronic damage can be intensified if a device is powered on or plugged in while a flooding incident occurs. An appliance with current running through it during exposure to water is more likely to short-circuit and pose a greater risk of starting an electrical fire. Property owners should exercise caution when handling damaged devices:

  • Do not attempt to power off a device.
  • Carefully unplug or turn off circuits.
  • Contact experts to handle unstable electronics.

Owners of buildings with many computers or appliances may want to contact a power company after major water damage to temporarily shut off the electricity. Even if a device was not powered on when damage took place, repair efforts may not be successful.

Extent of Exposure

It is next to impossible to accurately determine the degree of electronic damage without opening and inspecting flooded appliances and devices. Trained content cleaning and restoration experts do so in a clean, low-static environment to prevent additional damage and reduce the risk of an electrical fire due to short-circuiting throughout inspection, repair and testing.

Repair Costs

Depending on the item, it may be more cost effective to claim a loss and replace damaged electronics rather than attempting repairs. If content cleaning methods are unlikely to fully restore functionality, restoration experts can provide information to support an insurance claim.
An all-in-one water damage mitigation and restoration company offers specialized content cleaning services. Only experts should handle flooded electronics, as these items can pose a heightened risk of fire. Contact the closest franchise that offers electronics restoration and content storage in Mayfield, OH.

Flooded With Sewage Smells: What To Do When You Have a Sewer Backup

9/10/2019 (Permalink)

Someone washing a pan Don't pour grease or hot oil down the kitchen sink!

When flooding strikes your home in Middlefield, OH, it can do a lot of damage. This is especially true if the flooding includes sewage loss, such as a broken pipe, a toilet backup, or sewer overflow. Not only do you have to deal with the water, you have to deal with the unpleasant sewage and odors – and possibly mold growth – that come with the water.

Causes of Sewer Backups

Flooding from sewer backups can be caused by many things:

  • Tree roots
  • Backflow valve malfunction
  • Grease buildup from pouring grease down the drain
  • Improper disposal of paper products
  • Aging sewer systems
  • Combined pipelines
  • Sanitary main blockages

Dealing With Mold

Where there is flood water, there is the potential for mold growth. Mold can make your house smell musty. To prevent this growth, the water must be dealt with immediately by opening windows and bringing in humidifiers and fans. After professional clean up and restoration, you will want to check areas where mold is likely to grow, especially if you notice a musty smell in your home.

Combating Sewage Odors

When it comes to dealing with sewage, you should hire an expert because you are not only dealing with water but also bacteria. The affected areas need to be disinfected and deodorized. You will also need to look at your personal belongings, including rugs and curtains, to ensure that they are disinfected and deodorized properly.

Preventing Future Problems

Although you cannot control or fix every potential cause, you can do a few things to prevent another flood from sewer backups:

  • Trim tree roots periodically.
  • Test your backflow valve once a year.
  • Properly dispose of grease and paper products.

By using these preventative measures and acting quickly when a flood does occur, you can protect your home in Middlefield, OH, from mold growth and bacteria caused by flood water. When a flood does strike, contact an expert to help you effectively restore and deodorize your home.

3 Important Things to Remember When Your Basement Floods

8/28/2019 (Permalink)

Flooded basement in Bainbridge, OH

Remember These 3 Important Tips When Your Basement Floods

There are few things worse than dealing with a basement flood. Quite often it is an ordeal to clean up and recover when water seeps in and damages your belongings and home. When your basement floods in Bainbridge, OH, remember these three important tips:

Secure the Area

Your safety is the first priority. Make sure that your power supply is switched off to avoid any unfortunate accidents. This includes turning off gas and electricity. It is important to steer clear of the flooded area while the power is still running. Avoid interacting with electronics such as TVs, lamps, or music systems even if the electricity has been turned off.

Stay Safe with PPE

Even if you know the source of the water and think it is clean, always use personal protective equipment when working in waterlogged areas. This can save you from waterborne diseases or infections. Pull on your boots and gloves before you get started and keep a face mask handy in case you need it.

Know When to Ask for Help

After you have salvaged your items from the basement flood, you can begin the task of removing water. This process that can be quite laborious depending on the depth of the water. If you feel overwhelmed, you can always turn to your local supplier of flood restoration and mitigation services. Allow your basement to completely dry before giving it a final cleanup with a mold and mildew remover and moving your items back in. Your insurance company is there to help if your insurance coverage includes flooding. Call them right away so they can provide the information you need to file a claim.
Knowing the proper procedures and having the right contacts can make a tiresome process easier to bear. Dealing with a basement flood is no fun at all, but you don’t have to face it alone.

How To Run Emergency Drills in the Office

8/21/2019 (Permalink)

An emergency action plan should include a map showing the evacuations routes and exits

If you own commercial property or manage a business in Chagrin Falls, OH, the safety of your employees should be top priority. That means putting together a comprehensive set of protocols for a wide variety of emergency situations, like a fire drill. What might such a plan include?

Developing the Plan

First of all, you need to know what you'll be doing during the drill. That means creating an emergency action plan. This plan should be easy to read and distributed throughout the office. It should include:

  • A map showing the established evacuation routes and exits.
  • Designated section coordinators and evacuation wardens.
  • The assigned roles of employees and their contact information.
  • A preferred method for reporting the emergency.
    A location for regrouping after evacuation.

Putting It Into Action

In addition to a plan, you may need equipment for handling an emergency like a tornado or fire drill. Medical kits and emergency supplies, like blankets and flashlights, should be stored in a secure location and replaced as necessary. In order to increase the likelihood of a smooth execution, be sure to provide regular training to your employees in your emergency action plan and run drills. This will also get them familiar with your emergency alert system, which may consist of alarms and radio communication.

The Aftermath

Once your evacuation is complete, you will need a plan for accounting for employees. You may also need to know how to administer basic medical care. Rescue operations could be necessary if not everyone is accounted for. A copy of your insurance policy and their contact information will be necessary once all immediate needs are taken care of, you should also designate someone to be in charge of this. It is recommended to research and choose a damage remediation service.
Emergency preparation involves a lot more than just the occasional fire drill, although that is an important element. If you are prepared for the worst, you are likely to only experience the best!

How Fire Can Lead to Water Damage in Your Business

8/14/2019 (Permalink)

Another way fire damage may occur is from the overflow emitted by firefighters' use of a hose

3 Ways a Commercial Fire Can Lead To Water Damage Issues

If your business in Chardon, OH, has experienced fire damage, then you may be looking at damage from water as well. In addition to excess moisture left behind by sprinkler systems and hoses, fire-damaged buildings are often left exposed to the elements. Here are three ways that a commercial fire can lead to issues with water damage.

1. Sprinkler Systems

Your fire suppression system, or sprinklers, can also lead to water damage. This is often less damage than would have occurred if the system had not been in place, but the leftover water puddles may cause some problems. Fortunately, many restoration services can take care of these additional damages in addition to any problems caused by fire or smoke.

2. Fire Hoses

Another way fire damage may occur is from the overflow emitted by firefighters' use of a hose. The output of the water hose used to fight the fire can also often leave flooded areas. If left to stand, this water can soak in and cause further damage to the property. As soon as the fire is safely out, you may want to begin getting as much water out of the property as possible. A restoration service may have a pump and dehumidifier that can help ease this process.

3. Exterior Damage

A fire may also leave damage to the exterior of your business structure. This may include holes in the walls or roof where wet weather such as rain or snow can leak in. This can lead to flooding and additional water damage. If you find these areas, it's best to tarp or board over the damaged space until repairs can occur.
When repairing your business, know that you may find water damage as well as smoke and fire damage. Whether it was from sprinkler system flooding, the powerful flow from a fire hose, or wet weather that occurred after the fire had damaged the exterior of the property, fire-related flooding should be addressed as soon as possible. Fortunately, your local fire restoration service should be able to get you back up and running.