Monday, June 26, 2017

Fire Damage Restoration - Helps You Restore Your Home Back in Good Condition


Home fires can be devastating, and once the initial shock and subsequent relief of surviving has worn off, you're often left with a huge mess to clean up.

The effects of fire damage can be emotionally traumatizing to deal with, which is why it's always helpful to hire professionals to assist you during this trying process. However, there are some things you can do to help speed up the process and save some of your personal possessions.

The most important thing to remember when reentering your home aftermath is that just because it looks safe, doesn't mean that it is. There can still be dangerous soot in the air as well as lingering smoke and water damage from the rescue.

Make sure you have the permission of the authorities that your home is safe enough to enter, and it's best to choose only one or two people to go in at first.

Depending on the severity, you will probably first notice everything covered in ashes and soot. This can be dusted off of surfaces and vacuumed off of furniture and carpets.

It will be much easier to work inside your home if the majority of soot is removed first before you begin sorting through your belongings. If some areas have little or none, make sure that you don't track in soot. Either avoid these rooms or place protection on the floor.

It can affect many different surfaces and cause permanent harm if not taken care of quickly. Chrome and other metals will need to be cleaned or else they can tarnish. Similarly, porcelain, which many toilets, tubs, and some tiles are made of, can become discolored and start to yellow.

Upholstery that has deeply imbedded soot should be sent to professional cleaners to ensure they get deep into the fabric to lift up any residual stains.

Most food should be thrown out, even if sealed or kept inside of the fridge. Even if the kitchen was not affected by it, smoke may have gotten into some of the food and spoiled it (or at least make it taste unappetizing). It is often easier to just toss it all out rather than sift through it looking for something that is salvageable.

Clothing and rugs, like upholstery, should be sent to professional cleaners with specific instructions to treat for fire damage. It isn't wise to attempt to clean these on your own, as you can spread the soot and make the problem worse or even impossible to reverse.

A professional fabric cleaner has the greatest chance of reviving some items from fire damage. Likewise, don't touch any electrical appliances that have fire damage or that are in the near area. They may have been affected and could potentially spark another one. They also may have been affected by water if professionals were called to the scene.

When dealing with this kind of issue you will want experts to handle a big chunk of them. They can safely help you sort through your home and restore it back to a livable state. Only do what you absolutely must, such as sending clothes off to the cleaner, wiping off soot, and gathering items of sentimental value.


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Friday, June 23, 2017

Add Value To Your Home With A Professional Remodel


One of the best ways to boost your home's value is by remodeling it. Remodeling the home will update the interior setting and can also boost your home's curb appeal. Bathroom remodeling is the best way to add value to your home, but there are also other steps you can take. When you want to increase your home's property value, here's what you should do as a homeowner.

New Garage Door

Most people don't assume that they can increase their home value with a new garage door, but the feature will transform the look of the exterior setting. You can spend $1,500 to $3,000 on a new garage door and get a return on investment of 83 percent. Choose a feature that complements the surrounding architecture and color scheme of the home to allow it to blend in well with the house.

Bathroom Remodel

Replacing the fixtures, installing a new shower, adding new tile, and a porcelain tub will increase your home's value with changes that are made. Bathroom remodeling can cost up to $16,000 but will update the home and reduce the risk of repairs that are needed in the future.

Add a Second Floor

A second story on your home not only makes the building stand out on the market but will also add extra square footage to your property that can significantly increase its value. The average cost of a second story is $155,000 but will provide you with a 71.8 percent return when it's time to sell it.

Wood Deck

A quality wood deck will make it easy to spend more time in the backyard where you can entertain and lounge outdoors. The project will cost under $10,000 to build with a return of 87 percent. You can even add a place to barbecue or cook when you want to have guests over. This new addition to your home adds a brand new dimension to the original construction while adding an exterior entertaining concept.

Minor Kitchen Remodel

The kitchen is known as the most important room of the home where the residents spend the most time each day. The room can be updated to look stylish and help make the home more in line with the modern construction trends all around the country. Kitchen remodeling can mean replacing the cabinets, adding new countertops, and installing energy-efficient appliances that look sleek. Expect to spend an average of $18,000 and get 82 percent back. Making minor changes will transform the setting without overdoing it to ensure that it still blends in well with the interior setting.

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Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Water Damage Clean Up - Not Just From Storms


When most people think of water damage in a home or business, scenes of area wide flooding showing continuously on 24 hour news channels is likely to come to mind. But actually, a small percentage of water damage losses are related to storms or flooding.

It's true that these losses get more publicity because they happen in bunches and tend to be more severe, but it is much more likely that if you suffer a water damage loss it will be from a plumbing problem. That's the good news, because there is nothing you can do to prevent storms, and little you can do to prevent storm damage, but there are things you can do to prevent water damage from plumbing problems.

Water Damage from Plumbing Mishaps

The most severe incidents usually occur in a home or business when there is a water line break and no one is there. This is a common occurrence at businesses, where a broken water supply line can spew out water all night or all weekend before it is discovered. The culprits include: blown fittings on water heaters located above the office areas; automatic coffee machines that malfunction and continue filling and overflowing the pot all night; broken lines to a sink, toilet, or ice maker; malfunctioning fire sprinkler systems; and even water main breaks in the ceiling.

In homes, similar problems with supply lines are common, but other common occurrences in are: the hot or cold water hose to the washing machine rupturing; dishwashers and washing machines continuing to fill and overflow when the float ball malfunctions; toilets that are flushed, stop up and continue to run; and bathtubs that are being filled and are forgotten.

Preventive Measures

As you can see from all of these examples, the easiest thing you can do to limit or prevent water damage in your home or business is to turn off the main water line when you will be away for an extended time. Some of worst days for water damage losses are right after major holidays or popular vacation times when people are returning home. That's when they discover that water has been leaking for who knows how long, and when the damage is severe and the clean up and repairs extensive. How long you are willing to be gone without turning off the water to your home or business depends on how big of a risk you are willing to take.

But even simpler and smaller steps than turning off the water main to your home can be taken to avoid common water damage situations. For instance don't leave your home with the dishwasher or washing machine running, or with a toilet that hasn't stopped running. Also, if you are going to be gone for more than a day, at least turn off the hot and cold water to your washing machine. That in itself will eliminate a common cause of water damage.

And one last thing, if the water service to your home is ever interrupted, make sure to turn off every faucet and shower that was on when the water went off. Severe water damage can occur when faucets and showers are inadvertently left on and the water service is restored while the homeowner is gone. So you can see that many water damage losses, and the grief that goes with them, are very preventable if you are willing to take a few simple precautions.


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Saturday, June 17, 2017

Tips to Prevent Fire in the Home - Keep the Family Safe and Sound


Any area of the home is prone to fires, but especially the kitchen. Many don't know that cooking fires are the most common causes of fire and injury within the home. From pans left unattended while hot on the stove to not having a fire extinguisher inspection along with a variety of less obvious causes, there is plenty for homeowners to be concerned with. Because house fires are extremely dangerous for your family, it's important to be educated on the most common causes. Thankfully there are some tips and preventative measures every homeowner should take, and they will ensure less of a chance of fire.

According to the NFPA, or National Fire Protection Association, kitchen fires are not only the top cause of home fires, the majority of injuries in the kitchen happen because victims try to fight the fire on their own. Completely avoiding them is the smartest option.

Don't Leave the Kitchen

Leaving food on the stove is the most common cause of a kitchen fire. Never leave while something is on the cooking, it's much smarter to turn off the stove or move the pan from the heat for a moment until returned. The same goes for food in the oven under the broiler; with such high heat it doesn't take long for foods to ignite. Always keep the oven door cracked when broiling.

It's also important to always take note of things on or around the stovetop. Items like oven mitts, kitchen towels, curtains and appliance cords can easily ignite when close to the burners. Always move flammable products away from the stove top. If using a towel to remove hot pans from the stove, make sure it's not hanging down where it could touch the burner and catch fire.

The Right Attire

Any clothing item with flowing, long parts such as loose-fitting shirts and even aprons depending on how they are constructed can catch fire. Stick with fitted tops and short sleeves. Otherwise, a fitted apron can keep clothing tied back or tucked away so it won't get in the way. Also, any long hair should be tied back.

Invest in Fire Safety Equipment

Always have a fire extinguisher in or close to the kitchen, and make sure fire extinguisher inspections are performed at least yearly. It's been proven that in the case of a fire, the fire extinguisher usually makes the difference between a minor disaster and the complete loss of a kitchen or home. However, don't just buy the extinguisher, mount it and forget about it. Make sure that the usage label is read, or take a class at a local provider so using it will be second nature.

It's also important to regularly change out the batteries in any smoke detectors. Most homes have a smoke detector in the kitchen or a nearby room which is great, but having an inoperable detector is pointless! Check or change the battery about every six months to be safe. There are actually companies that can be contracted to come out and perform detector and fire extinguisher inspections for a small fee, which is great because there's less chance of forgetting.

Dispose of Cooking Oils Correctly

When it comes to cooking with oil, it's smart to know the smoke points of various oils. Smoke points are the temperature where oil breaks down and becomes a fire hazard. When this knowledge is gained one can avoid subjecting oil with low smoke points to high heat on the stove top. This can easily cause a fire.

Never throw hot grease into the trash, even if it's not aflame. Something in the trash can catch fire. The best method is to cool the grease then pour it into an old coffee can. Also, be sure upon fire extinguisher inspection that it's the correct type for grease and oil fires, or for in the kitchen atmosphere.

By following these tips one can ensure their kitchen is safe, and never forget to schedule fire extinguisher inspection!


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Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Drip, Drip, Drip - You've Got Water Damage!



While floods get all the headlines, water damage affects homeowners across the nation - even in times of good weather. Your home is filled with potential sources of water damage. After all, thousands of feet of pipe circulate water through your home, to the faucets, water heater, toilets, washing machine, dishwasher, and sprinklers, as well as to and from the city water systems. Pipes rust and burst, joints fail, appliances leak, and the occasional resident forgets to turn the water off.

So, what happens when a pipe bursts or a sink overflows? A minor flood event - inside your home! Water damage sets in quickly and often continues damaging your home without your notice. While a toppled water heater will grab your attention right away, a slow leak in the basement could go undetected for months or years.

Let's look at the damage that an overflowing bathtub might cause. First, if the bathtub is located upstairs, the damage won't be contained to just the one bathroom. In fact, with the help of gravity, expect damaged ceilings, walls, carpets, cabinets, and furnishings in the room below. In the bathroom itself, water damage will affect the floor, baseboards, drywall, and cabinetry. Depending on how long the water continued flowing, water may have spread to adjacent rooms, ruining carpets, floors, walls, and electrical systems.

If something of this nature happens to you, would you know what to do? Turning off the power is the first task as the risk of electrocution should never be taken lightly. Next, turn off the water! Use absorbent towels, mops, and sponges to soak up as much water as possible. Open the windows to further ventilate the home and then call a professional. While some water damage and clean up can be a do-it-yourself job, significant flooding requires professional intervention.

Not only do you need to thoroughly dry out the home, you will need to take steps to prevent mold growth as well as repair structural damage. A professional water damage restoration company has the tools, knowledge, products, and experience to help you recover from the flooding event. Look for a company that can provide you with a prompt response because drying out your home quickly is of utmost importance in preventing further damage.

In addition to calling your local water damage professional for emergency help, call your insurance company. While you may feel foolish for leaving the water on in the tub, you may be pleasantly surprised to learn that overflows, even accidental ones, are covered by your homeowners insurance.

No matter what type of water damage occurs in your home, from an unnoticed drip in the basement to a burst pipe in the kitchen, professional and prompt help is often your best choice. Depending on the nature of the water damage, repairs may even be covered by your homeowners insurance.

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Sunday, June 11, 2017

Restoration Cleaning - Rebuilding That Dream, Protecting That Investment


We can never predict when a tragedy could cost us our home, or at the very least, cause it to suffer significant damage. Hurricanes, for instance, can cause flooding, and an electrical fire could lead to fire damage or worse, the total loss of the property. This is why there is such a thing as restoration cleaning - this can be used to describe cleaning services that mainly take care of homes and buildings affected by water or fire damage. If you aren't quite familiar with these services, here's a quick primer that we hope won't have to come in handy in the future. But in the unlikely event you may be needing restoration cleaning services, consider these facts.

As we mentioned, cleaning and repairing items affected by fire and water damage would be two primary functions of these services. And it would be extremely important that you look for a reliable and trustworthy restoration cleaning provider in case your home is gutted by fire or flooded severely. These services can salvage what may otherwise seem unsalvageable due to fire, and when it comes to ensuring the health and welfare of your family, can exterminate mold or get rid of excess water in case of flooding. Restoration cleaning companies can also work hand-in-hand with your insurance provider in helping you recoup as much as possible following these unexpected tragedies.

The job description of professionals who work for these companies also covers other things not all of us are aware of. While you can usually do well on your own cleaning your carpet, there may be times when hiring a professional makes more sense. This would usually be the case when you haven't had it cleaned in a while, thus the need for more heavy-duty cleaning. Restoration cleaning is also useful in removing obnoxious and peculiar odors that could decrease the value of your home, nauseate its occupants and turn off visitors. These odors could also be the sign of a health hazard, so it makes perfect sense to turn to a pro before matters get potentially worse.

Restoration cleaning has the EPA's seal of approval when it comes to removing health risks like mold and bacteria and properly dealing with a flooded home. Fire damage dilemmas are resolved quicker with help of companies who specialize in this type of cleaning, and there are other less intensive services offered that may save you a lot of time and effort, and even money if you consider the long-term benefits. Don't be caught unprepared when catastrophe strikes. Have a list of restoration cleaning providers handy in case the unthinkable happens.

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Thursday, June 8, 2017

Hire a Professional Fire Damage Cleanup to Restore Your Home


After your house, or a part of it, has been razed and damaged by fire, cleaning and restoring it back to its former glory will be your main concern. However, most homeowners find the task extremely time-consuming, stressful, and dangerous that they would rather hire a professional fire damage cleanup expert to do the job instead.

Repairing and restoring your home back to a habitable state depends on the extent of the damage to your home. Some homes only need a few days of work while severe structural damages take several months to accomplish. With the help of a team of experienced professionals, repairing a fire damaged home is always easier.

Don't be Tempted to do it Yourself, Hire an Expert

You might be tempted by the idea of cleaning the fire damage in your home by yourself. However, doing so can worsen the fire and water damage and even threaten your health. When determining the best way to deal with cleaning fire damage in homes, it can be helpful to know some of the best options available to you.

Perhaps the best thing that you could do after a house fire is to enlist the service of a professional restoration company. Since they are expert in this kind of work, they could surely take good care of your home's cleanup, repair, and restoration in no time.

Choose expert cleanup professional

When hiring for fire cleanup damage, be sure to hire a team who holds impeccable reputation and shows pertinent license, experience, skills, and equipment that will help them perform their task and restore your home back to its former glory.

The SOP after fire damage is to conduct a fire damage assessment to find out the extent of the damage and to plan out the necessary steps to be taken for a successful cleanup. Most of the time fire cleanup professionals begin by taking away the excess moisture as soon as detected. Failure in this aspect will make your home susceptible to the growth of mold and mildew, which in turn makes it a breeding ground for diseases that could harm the health of your family.

Stop Fire Damage from Destroying your Home

Though you can't prevent fire from razing your home, the good thing is you could stop fire damage from further eating up your house with the help of a professional restoration company. Now, restoring your home from fire damage should no longer be a serious cause of concern since there's a team of professionals that are willingly offering their hands for your home's benefit. This does not only unburden you from the heavy responsibility of cleaning, disinfecting, and repairing your home. It also saves you time and money in the long run, especially if your homeowner's insurance is generous enough to cover the cost for you.


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Monday, June 5, 2017

Water Damage Restoration by Professional Companies


Until a few years ago, homes, properties and personal items devastated by water were often considered lost for good. However, thanks to innovations in technology, what is lost can now be restored to look almost as good as new. Mopping up a home or property after a serious flooding is not as easy as many envisage. Stagnant water can damage the floor, walls, carpets and other personal belongings. Extracting water is not possible without the right equipment and simply hanging the wet items to dry in the sun will not guarantee restoration of items to its pre-incident state. Water can also damage electrical wires or equipments and tampering with either of them can result in a nasty electrocution during clean-up. Water damage restoration is a specialized area of operation that requires licensed professionals to take care of the step-by-step restoration process.

Drying out the wet area, de-contamination, prevention of mold formation, loss assessment and monitoring are all processes that require the expert hands of professionals. Only with the help of state-of-the-art equipments and high-tech procedures can one ensure that any property or item that has been recovered within 48 hours of water damage can be easily restored to its pre-loss state. If a thorough restoration job is required, it is better to entrust the job to water damage restoration companies who are better equipped to handle a major water crisis. Reputed restoration companies adhere to government-approved procedural standards that are based on reliable restoration principles, research and practical experience.

Prompt, decisive action is of utmost importance during restoration and only a restoration expert can do full justice to the role. You will be wonder-struck by the number of restoration methods that are employed by these companies to help the family or business fully recover from water damage. Freeze drying processes are used to safely freeze water damaged items before any signs of further deterioration takes place. The items, frozen thus, are then heated allowing the moisture to vaporize, thereby getting rid of the excess water from the water damaged item.

Other restoration processes involve crawl space drying, structural drying, sewage clean-ups, carpet cleaning, basement drying, odor control, sanitization, disinfecting, dehumidification, debris extraction, wind damage and mold remediation. However, not all restoration companies follow all these processes. You need to choose the most reputed ones who will be sufficiently-staffed and well-equipped to offer 24 hour rapid response service for both domestic and commercial properties. Reputed restoration companies employ certified professional restoration specialists and technicians who are trained to respond to water damage quickly, effectively and appropriately. Some of the most customer-friendly water damage restoration companies in the U.S. now also offer specially formulated Insurance Claim Management Service to clients who have suffered serious water damage caused by hurricanes, fires or other disasters covered under their insurance policies.

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Friday, June 2, 2017

Why You Should Let A Fire Restoration Company Combat Your Smoke And Fire Damage


As a homeowner will usually want to restore a fire damaged or smoke damaged house on their own. They might want to restore it on their own for a couple of reasons. The first is usually because they think they can save a lot of money by doing the smoke damage and fire damage repair on their own. The second reason is because they might be uncomfortable in allowing strangers to work in their home, especially if only part of the house was damaged. Though the second reasons is strictly a matter of personal choice, one has to realize that a fire restoration company can only save a home owner a lot of money rather than make him spend more to restore his or her house.

This is further explained below. A professional smoke damage or fire damage company will usually have several years of experience that will allow them to tackle various problems in the most efficient and cost effective manner. If you approached a fire restoration project on your own, you will quickly find that you will have to do a lot of trial and error type of mistakes to learn the best processes to restore your home. Also, you can make costly mistakes that will result in a very improper restoration. You might then have to spend more to get it restored again and it will ultimately cost you a tremendous amount of money. A much better option would be to leave the whole restoration work to a fire restoration company as they will work in the best interests of your home.

Moreover, there are certain things that need to be done for smoke damage and fire damage that you cannot do on your own without proper equipment. For example, smoke damage is often extensive when there is a fire. Smoke has the ability to be absorbed by porous construction materials such as carpets and walls. An expert fire restoration company will use a process called as thermal fogging where they will use a chemical fog to penetrate the areas of the house that were also affected by the smoke in a similar manner. The fog will then neutralize the odor left by the smoke. Thermal fogging will require chemicals and equipment that you will definitely not have.

A smoke damage and fire damage cleanup company will also know what sort of chemicals to use on various materials that may have been affected by soot. If you did it on your own, you can damage certain materials in your house by using the wrong chemical cleaners. Many people make the mistake of using household deodorizers or home fresheners to get rid of the smoke odor. This will only have a temporary effect and in some cases the household deodorizer will often mix with the smoke odor to have a distinctly annoying odor of its own.

A fire damage restoration company will also use ozone to remove smoke odors. An ozone generator will be needed to do this. Even if one gets his hands on such a device, they must know that it must be operated only when the area is contained or sealed off.

If you really want to avoid headaches related to the restoration of your fire damaged home, it would be wise to hire the services of a professional fire restoration company.


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Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Things You Might Have Not Known About Water Damage Cleanup - Leave It to the Professionals


A lot of homeowners think that water damage control to their property is something that they can easily fix on their own. They assume that the water control is a simple process that will involve pumping out the water and drying out the area.

Though a flood cleanup contractor will employ the same principle in their control process, there are several finer details that can easily be missed out by homeowners. Some of them are mentioned below.

If you did not know about any of the following details, it is best that you let a commercial flood cleanup contractor carry out your basement flood clean or other water damage cleanup.

Types of water categories that can cause damage

There are 4 different categories of water that can cause damage. Category 1 is water that is pretty safe. Examples of this water are water from a broken pipe or a broken sink valve. Category 2 is water that contains some levels of harmful matter such as chemical pollutants or biological contaminants. This is also popularly known as grey water. Examples of water that belong to this category are water from toilets that will have urine in them. Water from the sumps will sometimes flood a house due to machinery malfunction and this would also be water control that will be categorized as 2. The last category which is the worst form of water that can cause damage will be category 3 or what is called as black water.

This is water that has high levels of bacteria, fungi and other microbes that can cause severe health problems. Water from sewages or natural sources such as rivers and streams are perfect examples of category 3 water. Only a commercial flood cleanup contractor will know how to tackle each category of water damage in the most appropriate manner possible. For example, he will use EPA approved chemicals in the water damage cleanup process where category 3 water might have been involved.

Types or intensity of damage that can be caused by water

There are 4 classes of water damage, with 1 being the least damaging while 4 is the worst kind of water damage that can be sustained by a property. Class 1 is when there is very little carpet and other porous materials that are affected. Class 2 water damage is when there is a considerable amount of carpet that is affected. A class 1 and class 2 cleanup is often used for a basement flood cleanup as there are no carpets or little carpet used in the construction of a basement. In addition to carpet, other porous construction materials such as wood, particle board and even plywood can be affected by moisture.

Class 3 is when the water has a very fast evaporation rate and when it can affect the ceilings, walls, flood, sub floor and even the insulation of a particular room. Class 4 is the worst form of water damage where even non porous materials such as hardwood, plaster, brick and even concrete are affected by stagnated water. Class 3 and 4 will require heavy duty water damage control that can be carried out only by an expert flood cleanup contractor.


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