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How to Prepare Your Home for a Storm

10/20/2020 (Permalink)

Man cleaning and maintaining plastic guttering on a house Clear Gutters and Drainage Around Your Home

Follow These Steps Before Your A Storm Hits

If your Polk County, FL, home is in the path of a coming storm, you probably want to know whether you are appropriately prepared. Flood water from storms can cause serious damage to surfaces and create conditions for secondary damage to occur. You should make sure that a few things are done before a storm hits your home:

1. Move Electronics and Valuables Above Ground Level
Your most valuable possessions are often your most vulnerable ones. Electronics can be damaged by electric surges, so you should always unplug them. Pictures, appliances, files, and power cords should all be elevated above ground level. Moving your things to a safe place will not only protect them from flood water but will also reinforce good habits regarding your valuable belongings in the future.

2. Clear Gutters and Drainage Around Your Home
During a storm, it is vital that water be efficiently directed away from your property. As heavy precipitation accumulates in gutters or drainage ditches, any buildup of litter or other matter can allow water to infiltrate your home, resulting in water damage and flooding. Make sure that all of your drainage infrastructure is clear. If you are anticipating an especially severe weather incident, consider digging new drainage areas or expanding existing ones.

3. Check That Your Home's Sump Pump Is Working
A working sump pump should be a last line of defense in preventing a flooded building. Do not wait until the last minute to make sure that yours is working. You should regularly test your pump by adding water to it manually, then checking if the water has been successfully pumped away from your home.
Owning a property means that you are responsible for the long-term viability of your home. If your space has already suffered damage from flood water, you should restore it as soon as possible to avoid more costly repairs in the future. A water restoration expert will know how to quickly and efficiently bring your home back to working order.

What To Do When You Have Water-Filled Lights

10/14/2020 (Permalink)

water coming out a light fixture When pipes break, one serious issue that can develop is water in light fixtures

When pipes break, one serious issue that can develop is water in light fixtures. This is a dangerous scenario, so know what to do if you experience this perilous circumstance.

Lighting Leak Hazards

When faulty piping and illumination infrastructures mix, there emerges a high risk of:

  • Electric shock
  • Fire
  • Collapsing ceilings

Everyone should understand the peril closely associated with these possibilities. If your electrical system becomes compromised, undertake the following precautions.

Lighting Leak Safety Measures
Carefully approach your breaker box and switch it to the off position. Confirm that the current has been halted through the use of a non-contact voltage tester, easily found in any hardware store. This is critical, as actions like simply switching off lights that have been compromised can result in shock. When broken pipes cause water in light sources to become a reality, shut down plumbing immediately. Should your trouble originate from an upper floor, you may have roof or ceiling damage. Prevent the situation from worsening by hiring a building repair specialist. Inspect your homeowner’s insurance to find out if you own coverage that falls within this class of disaster.
Caution your family to avoid the affected area. Enforce this warning by blocking the door and hanging a relevant sign. Place buckets beneath drips and make use of towels and newspapers to soak up existing overflow. Wood floors are best dried quickly, as mold can surface if you fail to do so in a timely manner. Porous items, such as area rugs and certain types of furniture, are to be removed and dried. Wall-to-wall carpeting is a particular challenge that will likely require professional service. Dehumidifiers can be helpful in evaporating persistent dampness but remember you will require one that is able to run independently of your household’s electrical system or via a generator.
If you detect water in light equipment inside your home at South Lakeland, FL, secure the impact zone and then employ qualified experts to conduct necessary plumbing repair or roofing replacement.

Everything You Need to Know About Household Black Mold

10/1/2020 (Permalink)

Black mold behind drywall Mold can grow behind a drywall

Stachybotrys chartarum, commonly known as "black mold," is a common type of fungus that can grow in virtually any warm and moist environment. Because it requires a moist habitat, mold damage is often an issue after flooding, though the humidity of North Lakeland, FL, can do the trick too if you lack proper dehumidifying equipment and air circulation. But what is this mysterious mold, how can you prevent it, and how do you go about mold remediation if all else fails?

What Is Black Mold?

Mold can grow almost anywhere in your home. It is often found on:

  • Walls, floors, and ceilings
  • Drapes
  • Rugs and carpets
  • Drywall
  • Wooden furniture
  • Fabric

It is typically green or black in color, with a fuzzy or slimy texture. It grows extremely quick and can start to spread on a surface as soon as 24–48 hours after exposure to water, so it is important to move fast if mold is involved.

How Can You Prevent Mold Growth?
To prevent mold from taking hold in your home, simply make it an unappealing environment. Because mold loves moisture, this means controlling the humidity in your home. Consider purchasing a dehumidifier if you have a history of moisture problems, and go the extra mile by installing a humidity meter so you can know if you ever get to risky levels.

How Do You Stop Mold Damage?
In the event of flooding, leaky pipes, or other water damage, the first priority is stopping the water at its source: Clear out surface water with a mop or wet vacuum, and fix any faulty appliances. If you think you see mold growth, seek professional help right away.
Sometimes it can be difficult for an amateur to spot black mold growth at all, let alone identify the particular strain and go about mold cleanup. If in doubt, your best bet is to call your local mold remediation specialists so you can get back to normal life "Like it never even happened."

4 Candle Alternatives

9/22/2020 (Permalink)

Aromatic reed freshener on table in room Reed diffusers are the best bet

How Candle Alternatives Can Be a Good Option for Your Home

If you have pets or kids, a candle fire can be a scary possibility. Fortunately, there are inexpensive alternatives out there. Read on to learn what candle alternatives can be a good option for your home in Lakeland, FL.

1. Essential Oil Diffuser
If you want something that can do more than one job, this may be a good idea because it both fills your home with your favorite scents and acts as a humidifier. These come in a variety of sizes and colors so you can find one that will fit perfectly in your home. Simply pick one out, fill it with your favorite oil, and enjoy it.

2. Reed Diffuser
This is another option that uses your favorite essential oils. The main reason people like this is because you only have to put the sticks in once every few weeks to get a constant scent in your home. This is the most low maintenance option with no wax, flames, or plug required. Plus, you can easily cover it if it doesn't match your decor.

3. Incense Sticks
These candle alternatives still let you light something, although this may not be for you if you are sensitive to smell. You may also have to play around with different types before you find one that smells good, isn't overpowering and doesn't make you think of dark churches. This option can be fun because you get to search for the incense holder that goes with your decor.

4. Room Sprays
If you can find one that lasts longer than five minutes, these are great candle alternatives. They are often available in the same scent as your favorite candles and good sprays will last all day without a flame.
Whether you are looking for a flameless alternative or just something new, essential oil diffusers, reed diffusers, incense, and room spray are your best bets. These can help you avoid fires, hiring restoration professionals, and other damage that candles can bring.

How to Keep Your Employees Safe Amid Snow Storms

9/10/2020 (Permalink)

Snowstorm, snow-covered street and cars with a lonely pedestrian Keep your employees protected during a snow storm

How to Keep Your Employees Safe Amid Snow Storms

During a snowstorm, office managers have the responsibility of making sure workers remain safe. Luckily, there are many precautions those in charge can take to assure their staff stays healthy and secure when bad weather hits.

Preparing for Snow
Before the winter season arrives in Dixieland, FL, do the following:

  • Check your building’s caulking and weather strips. After a few years, each of them should be redone.
  • Research ways to keep plumbing from freezing and cracking. The effects of a pipe burst can be highly distressing.
  • Acquire sand or dirt for covering icy sidewalks and parking lots. Slips can result in injuries and costly lawsuits.
  • Sign up for snowstorm alerts. This way, you will be able to take action at the earliest possible moment.
  • Establish a protocol for cancellation notifications. Having a phone tree or email list in place prevents jobholders from making treacherous and unneeded trips.

Taking a few simple measures before a blizzard hits significantly reduces the odds of endangerment, so do what you can before disruption arrives.

Dealing With Snow
When excessive snowfall comes your way, stay home unless absolutely necessary. In the event you must journey to your office, dress warm and be certain your vehicle comes equipped with jumper cables. Should you break down and become exposed to the elements, frostbite or hypothermia can take hold quickly. Know how to recognize and deal with these life-threatening conditions. Have an emergency kit with blanket, non-perishable food, and medical supplies handy for these and other perilous scenarios.
Besides being dangerous, violent weather causes all sorts of building damage. From roof collapses to fallen branches smashing through windows, the fallout often requires immediate attention. Should your workspace become compromised, select a qualified disaster recovery team that can get everything back to looking “Like it never even happened.”
Keep your employees protected during a snow storm, both before and during such a mammoth event. Once the worst has passed, check your facility for damage and commence repairs ahead of the next wintry downpour.

3 Things To Know About Mold Removal

8/20/2020 (Permalink)

Mold specialists with protective gear removing debris Mold removal specialist in Griffin, FL

3 Things To Know About Mold Removal

If you need mold cleanup at your Griffin, FL, place of business, you may be wondering what sort of things you can expect from the restoration process. In many cases, mold remediation follows a set series of protocols. This is done to ensure that the mold is thoroughly removed and everything sanitized in order to prevent a recurrence of these issues. Here are three things you may see while the professionals work on your company space.

1. Mold May Be Unseen

Because mold is a fungus, what you see is actually a colony made up of tiny spores. Mold spores individually may be unseen by the naked eye. This is why the professionals working on your company space may make several tests to confirm the presence of mold and where it's located.

2. The Areas Should Be Contained

Once the presence of mold is confirmed, mold cleanup can begin. The first step is to thoroughly contain that area in which the mold grows. This is often done by installing plastic sheeting around the space and using a ventilation system to regulate airflow. This will help prevent spores from becoming airborne and traveling to other areas of the business.

3. Cleaning May Involve Several Stages

The cleaning process can involve several stages. Your local mold remediation service may begin this process by removing any items that may have suffered from mold contamination. The area will have the mold removed, and be thoroughly sanitized with specific cleaners. Once the professionals are satisfied that no mold remains, they can then be bringing back any restored items to the space.

There are a few things you may see while mold remediation professionals perform the mold cleanup at your place of business. Because mold may be unseen, they may take several tests of areas in which they believe it may be growing. Once the presence of mold is confirmed, the space will be contained to prevent further spreading. Cleanup can then begin with the removal of the spores and the sanitation of the area. If you have any questions your remediation professional should be able to help.

What You Need To Know About Commercial Water Damage Claims

8/20/2020 (Permalink)

Air movers placed in a hallway of commercial building Commercial damage in Grasslands, FL

Storms can strike at any time, and virtually no business is immune to their potentially destructive power. If you’ve recently dealt with commercial water damage in Grasslands, FL, you may be able to make a small business claim. Before you file, there are a few things you should know about the process to help make your recovery more efficient.

“Damage” Can Encompass Several Types

It’s important to first determine whether your policy covers the damage you’ve experienced. “Damage” can encompass several things, including:

  • Mold
  • Corrosion
  • Structural damage
  • Destroyed inventory

Not all policies offer the same coverage, so check with your provider about the limits and exclusions of your policy.

Document Any Damage Thoroughly
In order to strengthen your claim, it’s essential to document any damage thoroughly to show the insurance company as proof. Before you call cleanup and restoration services, be sure to take photos of the space. Also hang on to any relevant receipts, such as those for equipment purchases or inspection completions. These records will be helpful in determining the total value of your company’s losses.

Plan To Proactively Prevent Future Damage
After dealing with damage and an insurance business claim, you may be wondering what you can do to prevent issues in the future. As a general rule, maintenance of your building is needed to keep it from having a pipe break. Check gutters and drainage areas regularly to keep them clear, and remove snow and ice from your roof when needed. It may also be a good idea to protect exposed pipes from freezing by insulating them and to keep the indoor temperature over 55 degrees at all times.
Suffering commercial damage from water is frustrating for any company, but filing a business claim can help mitigate the aftereffects. By understanding the ins and outs of the claims process, you can get your building restored quickly and get back on your feet.

How To Prevent Mold By Avoiding Water Damage

8/10/2020 (Permalink)

Missing shingles on a roof Missing shingles should be replaced immediately

One of the most important ways for Polk County, FL, residents to tackle mold prevention is to limit the risk of water damage. There are several reasons to keep up with the home maintenance tasks that keep water where it belongs in your home, such as the fact that prevention is cheaper than repairs. Sadly, many homeowners find that damage from water is a major factor in damage to the foundation of their homes, weakening the structure and inviting pests, in addition to encouraging mold growth.

How To Prevent Water Damage

Mold prevention is usually pretty easy to handle, especially if you're consistent about tackling home care projects. There are several tasks homeowners should include in their maintenance schedule:

  • Clean the gutters along the roof to provide good drainage. When leaves, debris, and animal materials are left in the gutters, dams appear (and often freeze during the winter) causing water to collect and seep into the attic.
  • Direct gutter downspouts to at least five feet away from the foundation. There are many decorative and practical ways to make sure that rainwater and melting snow don't pool up around the exterior walls.
  • Consistently watch for water leaks. Pay attention to changes in water pressure, unpleasant smells from your drains, and any sign of moisture on exposed pipes. The sooner you can catch cracks, drips, and leaks, the better you can prevent mold growth.
  • Keep an eye on your roof. Most months you can just complete a visual inspection from the ground, but you may want to pay for a professional inspection if you've experienced heavy weather or suspect damage to the roof.
  • Missing shingles should be replaced immediately.

If you have appliances that use water, such as the washing machine, dishwasher, ice maker, sump pump, and swamp cooler, it's a good idea to include those in routine inspections. As soon as any of these appliances show signs of damage, leaks, or added moisture, find out what the problem is and complete necessary repairs.

Avoid Mold Growth and Other Damages
Whether you've noticed water damage or any signs of mold growth, contact water damage remediation professionals as soon as possible. Arranging for quick repairs and cleanup is one of the best ways to assure that your mold prevention efforts are successful.

Why You May See Mold After Flooding

8/10/2020 (Permalink)

Mold growth found on drywall Mold growth after storm damage in Griffin, FL

Mold Growth After Storm Flooding

After a storm leads to flood water in your Griffin, FL, home, there’s a chance you may see mold growth as well. There are a few reasons for this. Here’s what you may want to know.

1. Mold Is a Fungus

One of the first things to understand is that mold is a fungus. This means that it grows by consuming organic material and water and then creating spores. This prime location for this fungi growth is in the area of high moisture and dim light.

2. Flood Water Can Create a Mold Habitat

The availability of standing water after a storm flood has occurred can create a prime habitat for mold growth. This is because flood water can get into small dim areas, such as under the baseboards, where the flood water creates plenty of moisture and the drywall and wood material provide an energy source. Fortunately, a restoration professional should know that such areas are at risk for this problem and include them in their damage assessment.

3. Flooding Can Get into Unseen Areas

It’s important to understand that water can seep into little used spaces of your home as well. This is why it’s a good idea to call a storm damage restoration professional to help any time this type of problem occurs. These professionals can handle water removal as well as any secondary damages that may occur such as mold, or sanitizing to prevent bacteria growth. They will also know what unseen areas in your home should be checked for these damages based on where the flooding occurred. This may include basement or crawlspace areas, under flooring, and between some walls.

Because mold is a fungus there’s a chance you could see mold growth after issues with standing water, like storm flooding, occur. This water can seep into unseen spaces and create a desirable habitat for the spores to grow. Fortunately, a professional can help.

Effective Ways To Keep Your Business Safe From Fire Damage

7/12/2020 (Permalink)

Emergency Escape Plan written on a notepad with marker. If you own a business, it is vital to have a fire safety plan in place

Ways You Can Protect Your Property And Keep It Safe From Damage

Experiencing a business fire can be a devastating blow to your company, but there are numerous ways you can protect your property and keep it safe from damage.

1. Fire Safety Plan
If you own a business, it is vital to have a fire safety plan in place. The first step to doing this is to have mechanical inspections on a regular basis. This will ensure that your fire alarm systems and sprinklers are functioning properly if a fire does occur.
It is also key to educate and train your employees on fire preparation. Having regular fire drills in the office is a good idea to guarantee all employees know what to do if the building ever catches fire. They should know how to properly use a fire extinguisher and be well aware of where all exit doors are located.

2. Check Fire Extinguishers
Not only are most buildings required to have fire extinguishers but having enough of them can also save you from complete destruction and damage if a business fire does occur. Keep in mind that travel distance should not go over 75 feet when placing extinguishers around your building. Also, be sure to have them properly placed in areas like kitchens that are extremely hazardous.

3. Keep Hallways Clear
One way to keep your employees safe if a fire occurs in South Lakeland, FL, is by keeping all hallways and storage spaces free from rubbish. If there is clutter in the building, this could not only cause more fire damage, but it could also slow down the evacuation process and lead to employee injuries. Be sure to follow the fire code regarding this.
Implementing these fire safety steps in your business is beneficial for you and your building, and is key to keeping your employees safe as well. If a business fire occurs, you will know you did everything you could. If damage does occur, call in a professional fire restoration company to help get your business back to normal again.