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Tips for Fast and Thorough Water Cleanup

11/7/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Tips for Fast and Thorough Water Cleanup Water damage in room due to supply line breaks in the above bathroom

Tips for Fast and Thorough Water Cleanup

When you have a flood in Nassau Bay,TX, you need water removal to be fast and thorough since time and temperature have critical effects on water damage. Here are some things you can do fast, while you wait for professional help:

  • Stop the source of water, such as shutting off water to a flooded toilet, broken pipes or wayward appliance.
  • Begin removal of standing water using pumps, vacuums, mops and rags.
  • Begin the drying process by opening windows and doors, and by running fans and your air conditioning, if you have access to electricity.
  • Prevent moisture from wicking up into furniture by setting wooden legs on aluminum foil or blocks.
  • Salvage important belongings by drying and removing them from the flooded area.

When professionals arrive, expect the thorough part of water cleanup to kick in. You may see them:

  • Prevent further water damage from rain by tarping or boarding open areas.
  • Completely remove water using high-powered extractors, including truck mounted units and gas-powered equipment for areas where utilities are unavailable.
  • Begin removing and cataloging personal belongings for cleanup and restoration.
  • Use specialized training and devices to find hidden water.
  • Use powerful dehumidifiers and fans for fast and thorough drying which helps to minimize warping of building materials.
  • Monitor moisture levels to ensure inhospitable environments for mold growth.
  • Protect your structure by removing porous materials that hold water, such as carpet padding, insulation and lower sections of wallboard.
  • Use expertise and consideration to help decide what can be salvaged and what should be replaced.
  • Restore your home back to its pre-damaged condition.

Being fast and through in the cleanup of water damage prevents subsequent problems. Mold may start to develop in the first couple of days, but professionals can help prevent this with their thorough water removal methods. If mold has already begun, they are also capable of containing colonies during cleanup and prevent further infestation.

Property Management: Preparing for the Worst-Case Scenario

11/7/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial Property Management: Preparing for the Worst-Case Scenario Post an emergency checklist in your Clear Lake,TK building

Emergency Preparation

Storm preparedness and emergency planning are both tools in the property managers arsenal. These tools can be the difference between maintained business operations or complete shutdown. The four points below can guide you through the steps and the significance of emergency preparation.

1. Preplan for Disaster

As an owner or a manager, you may find that a significant part of property management revolves around employee safety and disaster prevention. Businesses require this type of preparation to help ensure business continuity; therefore, you will likely want to accumulate a list of contacts and operational procedures in case of an emergency.

2. Prepare an Emergency Checklist

Storm preparedness can be as simple as creating an emergency checklist for employees and clients. You can post this checklist around the property and make sure that every employee has a copy, ensuring that everyone will know what to do during an emergency. These lists should include maps to exits and shelter areas along with an action plan.

3. Practice Emergency Procedures Regularly

While the creation of preparation materials and checklists are a good starting point, these tools are nothing without regular practice and guidance. Many municipalities suggest performing monthly emergency walk-throughs and safety meetings. These monthly meetings will allow employees to ask questions and practice the developed safety routines while allowing management to rectify any potential concerns before a legitimate emergency.

4. Consider Restoration Specialists

When you think of the term restoration specialists, you may not immediately think of emergency preparations, but some restoration companies in Clear Lake,TX, provide a form of emergency planning for businesses. These companies may offer property evaluations to help pinpoint safety concerns as well as offer custom plans for your business in the event of an emergency or disaster.

An essential aspect of most business planning is storm preparedness, but it goes beyond the installation of storm shutters and backflow valves. Storm readiness means preparing for emergencies, not only from a business operations perspective but a safety perspective as well. Creating procedures and checklists as well as performing monthly meetings can all benefit your business and employees, ensuring that everyone and everything is prepared in emergent situations.

Teaching Your Kids How To Escape a Fire: 3 Tips

11/7/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Teaching Your Kids How To Escape a Fire: 3 Tips Teaching your kids fire escape techniques can help them escape to a safe location

Teaching Your Kids How To Escape a Fire

Educating your children about fire prevention and what they should do in the event of a blaze at your La Marque,TX, home can protect their lives during such an emergency. However, you may be unsure of how to give this kids safety lesson without frightening them. As a parent, there are a few strategies you can use that might help you talk about this important issue.

1. Create an Escape Route Map Together

If you have young children, combining fire safety lessons with a fun and creative activity can help them absorb the message without fearing it. For example, as you discuss the scenario of a home fire, have your kids draw and color a map of your home and highlight all the possible exits they could use. Afterward, talk about which routes are the safest and why. Have them pin these maps on the fridge or corkboard so they can be reminded about your family’s planned safety route each time they see it.

2. Shop for Fire Safety Tools as a Family

Involving your children in kids safety can make them more aware of its importance. When you shop for fire escape tools such as smoke detectors, fire extinguishers and window ladders, take your kids along so you can educate them about the importance of each item and its role in helping them leave the home safely during a blaze. Encourage every child to ask questions, no matter their ages.

3. Turn Lessons Into Games

Teaching your kids fire escape techniques can be fun as well as informative. For example, you can play follow the leader or Simon Says during fire crawl lessons. If you have your home’s safety inspected by a fire damage and remediation service, have your kids imagine they are fire technicians and which exits they believe are the safest to use during a fire.

Your La Marque,TX, home is likely a beacon of safety and security for your children. However, teaching them kids safety tactics in case of a fire can help them escape to a safe location until the blaze is put out.

3 Common Water Issues in Commercial Buildings

10/2/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial 3 Common Water Issues in Commercial Buildings Broken pipe in Houston, TX building

Managing a business takes a great deal of time, energy and money, but the payoff can be rewarding. Unfortunately, water issues such as leaking pipes can force a business in Houston, TX, to close its doors. Knowing the common water issues that many businesses face can help you prevent water damage to your business.

1. Damaged Pipes

Pipes can become damaged over time, which can result in a break or leak. Both issues can cause long-term damage to your business. If your pipes are leaking, you may notice that your water bill has increased without an increase in purposeful water use. A pipe break is often more sudden and apparent, but it can also cause extensive damage. Maintaining your business’s pipes will help prevent leaking pipes and other damage from occurring.

2. Sewer Backup

If your building has repeatedly had a toilet backup or you notice water isn’t draining appropriately in sinks and other drains, it could be a sign of a sewer backup. Sewer backups can leave your business without functioning restrooms and appliances, and they can also be dangerous to people’s health. Backups can create water damage in a variety of locations in your business and can affect various appliances at once.

3. Foundation Damage

A sturdy, supportive foundation is essential for any building, including businesses. If water has accessed your business’s foundation numerous times, especially in older buildings, the foundation may begin to crack. It’s important to be aware of the state of your building’s foundation, since damaged foundations can make a building unsafe to inhabit. Signs of foundation damage could include visible cracks, sinking floors and doors that won’t easily open or close.

As a business owner, you know the value of having a clean, safe business. Water issues such as leaking pipes can wreak havoc on a business, but knowing what to look for can help you keep your business functioning at its best. If you do experience water issues, qualified professionals can help you fix the issues and prevent future damage.

Do Storm Floods Always Lead To Mold?

9/25/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Do Storm Floods Always Lead To Mold? Storm damage in Houston, TX

As a homeowner in Houston, TX, you try to prepare for any event. When a bad storm leaves your lower levels filled with water, you may feel caught off guard. Thankfully, you can get professional help from a storm damage cleanup crew to ensure your house is returned to normal. Your cleanup experts can also help you understand the risk of mold growth. Storm floods don't always lead to mold, but the following can increase your chances:

  • Passing time
  • Contaminated water
  • Faulty repairs

Find out more about why these circumstances can lead to the growth of fungus.

Excess Time

Standing water does not have to be synonymous with fungal growth; but, if you don't find the flooding right away, you may have a higher chance of the growth taking place. This is because stagnant water can become contaminated. It's also because many mold spores exist naturally in your home. Once the excess moisture is there, it may only take 24 to 48 hours for the spores to start to grow.

Dirty Water

The source of the flood can also affect whether your home has a mold growth problem. Bacteria, mold spores and other contaminants found in stormy waters can allow the fungus to grow even faster than in clean water. This dirty flood may also bring extra spores into your house.

Incomplete Repairs

Fixing water problems quickly is an important part of avoiding mold. If you try to undertake this cleanup on your own, you may miss pockets of moisture. Leaving this excess humidity in your house can create the perfect environment for mold. If you want to avoid this type of growth, you may want to make sure every part of your home has been cleaned and dried out after storm-related flooding.

Not every home filled with storm waters will have mold growth. How soon you start the repairs, the source of the water and the efficiency of the repairs may affect the secondary damage your home has to endure.

Clear Lake Home Health: 5 Tips to Minimize the Damage Caused by Water in your Home

9/24/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Clear Lake Home Health: 5 Tips to Minimize the Damage Caused by Water in your Home Water Damage Fact: Through SERVPROs timely response and the careful monitoring of water damage, mold and other health issues can be prevented.

Water is one of the most destructive elements on earth, and when water ravages a home, the result is substantial damage to the structure and furnishings. Severe storms, a leaky roof, a weeping foundation, an overflowing dishwasher, or a burst pipe in your Clear Lake home can all cause significant water damage, and time is of the essence to minimize the damage. Here are 6 tips that you can take immediately after a damaging water event.

Stop the Water at the Source. If the cause of the water damage in your Houston area home is from a burst water pipe, turn off the water immediately. If the damage is from a roof leak, try to capture as much water as possible in a large pot or garbage can. The more water you can keep from touching your floors, furnishings, and other belongings, the better. If water is entering your home is due to a flash flood or sewage backup,  contact an emergency water damage response team immediately. Flood and sewage waters carry debris and harmful bacteria that can cause injury and illness. Your local SERVPRO of Clear Lake stands at the ready to respond 24 hours a day.

Turn off and Unplug all Electrical Appliances. To avoid potential electrocution and further damage to electrical appliances, it is imperative that you turn off and unplug them as quickly as possible. If the water is high in the home due to a flash flood, evacuate the home immediately. All electrical appliances that have been touched by water in your home must be examined prior to use. The SERVPRO team can evaluate these items and help to determine if they are safe for use.

Remove Furnishings from Flooded Areas. Furnishings and personal items that are easily managed should be removed as quickly as possible from areas in the home that have been touched by the water. This will help to speed the process of drying the floors and furnishings while protecting the floors from further damage. When at all possible, avoid walking on wet carpets, and place aluminum foil under the legs of all furniture that you cannot move prior to your local Houston area SERVPRO arrives.

Photograph and Video the Damage.  As soon as it is safe to do so, take photos of the water or flood damage in your home. Be sure to take photos of damaged items, and if possible, videos of the water intruding on your property. This step will help your insurance adjuster to quickly process your claim.

Hire a Professional Water Damage Restoration Team. If improperly handled, water in your home can cause significant structural damage, and even dangerous mold infestations. SERVPRO is locally owned, and our team has the training, expertise, and tools necessary to fully restore your home quickly. From water extraction to dehumidifying and drying, through the rebuilding and restoration process, we can help you and your family get back to life pre-water damage.

Don’t underestimate the level of damage that water can do to your home. Call us immediately after a water damage even to your Clear Lake residence. We are the preferred provider for many insurance companies, and can assist you with the process of filing your claim. We are faster to any size disaster and are proud to serve our neighbors and friends throughout our community.

About The Clear Lake SERVPRO

SERVPRO of Clear Lake is faster to any size disaster.

How To Identify Black Mold

9/18/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation How To Identify Black Mold La Marque, TX home covered with mold

Many homeowners have heard tales of the horrors of mold, but few may have actually encountered it. When you suspect that your home in La Marque,TX, has a mold problem, you need to conduct a mold inspection. While it may be prudent to have this examination done by a professional, you may be able to tell if you have black mold just by observation. Here are a few tips on where to look and how to recognize it.

Where You Find It

Mold loves moisture and pulpy surfaces. Those two factors give you ample places to start your search:

  • Carpet
  • Ceiling tiles
  • Wood paneling or furniture
  • Dry wall

A mold problem is especially likely if any of these surfaces are in contact with a lot of water. If you know that a portion of your home experienced water damage, conducting a mold inspection in those areas is a good idea. If you smell a musty odor and cannot locate its source, you may have to hire an environmental hygienist to test for hidden mold.

What It Looks Like

There are many species of mold, but relatively few of them are often present in homes. Mold comes in a variety of shapes, colors, textures and sizes. The strain commonly referred to as black mold is called Stachybotrys Atra. It is typically black with either dark green or gray tints. It is also slimy and less airborne than other species. What it lacks in air travel, however, it makes up for in lateral moves. This type of mold is often found in large patches on walls, and it can grow rapidly. The sooner you identify the mold, the sooner you can get the problem taken care of, and the more likely you are not to let the problem get worse.

Finding mold is only the first step. If you discover that you have house mold during a mold inspection, you need to hire remediation experts to resolve the problem.

Simple Steps of Using a Fire Extinguisher

8/29/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Simple Steps of Using a Fire Extinguisher Fire damage on a storage in Dickinson, TX

Even the largest fires start out small. If you use a fire extinguisher, you can help prevent a blaze in your office from getting out of control. If you and your employees have never used one of these tools, learn how today. A few seconds could help avert a devastating disaster in your Dickinson, TX, workplace.

An Overview

If you have the opportunity to use a fire extinguisher, you don’t want to falter. Using it correctly could save your life and could prevent excessive fire damage to your office. This process doesn’t have to intimidate you. When using this took, employ the PASS method:

  • Pull the pin.
  • Aim the hose.
  • Squeeze the lever.
  • Sweep the hose.

Pull the Pin

First, make sure you are standing a safe distance away from the fire. You should be able to reach the flames from 8 to 12 feet away. If you need to move closer, do so with caution. Grab the extinguisher and locate the pin, which is inserted in the handle. Pull the pin out and hold the extinguisher and nozzle away from you.

Aim the Hose

Take the extinguisher handle with one hand and the hose with the other. Next, aim the hose at the base of the flames, not in the middle or at the top. If you don’t aim for the base, you may not have much or any success extinguishing the fire.

Squeeze the Lever

Once you’re in position, squeeze the two levers together with one hand. Make sure you have a firm grasp of the hose with your other hand. Apply even, slow pressure while squeezing the lever.

Sweep the hose

For the most effective results, move the hose from side to side, still aiming at the base of the flames. As the flames get smaller, move closer and continue spraying.

Whether in a kitchen fire or in any other part of your office, a fire extinguisher can be a lifesaver. Follow these steps, and you can avoid costly cleanup and mitigation.

Tips for First Aid Preparation at the Office

8/22/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Tips for First Aid Preparation at the Office Storm damage in La Marque, TX

It’s storm season in La Marque, TX, and you have probably dealt with some weather-related work interruptions. If you have been so fortunate that you have not had an emergency at work, now is the time to prepare. The best practice for office emergency preparation comes down to two things: having a first aid kit and having a first aid preparation program. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requires the following items to be included in your emergency kit for a small office:

  • Directions for contacting emergency help
  • CPR and resuscitation tools, such as a pocket mask or a bag valve mask
  • Blanket
  • Tweezers
  • Scissors
  • Adhesive tape
  • Various bandages including 2” wide rolling gauze, 4” x 4” gauze pads, 8” x 10” gauze pads, triangular bandages, and adhesive bandages
  • Alcohol wipes or other type of wound cleaner
  • Gloves
  • Splint
  • Elastic wrap

If you have more than three people, you need to increase your emergency kit inventory appropriately or have multiple kits located clearly throughout your building. Check your kit once a month and restock items to ensure you have what you need during emergencies. Keep the kit in a location where it will be easily seen by the workers in the building. Remember to have multiple kits or more supplies for larger offices.

Emergency Planning

Now that you have a first aid kit, it’s important to create an emergency program. OSHA outlines four elements to making a first aid program: employee and leadership involvement, safety and health training, prevention, and analysis of your workplace risks.

What are the greatest risks in your building? You may not think it is much, but don’t forget weather and other sudden events. You may have trees or other debris that can come through the roof or windows, hail or flood potential. Professional remediation can make your building like nothing ever happened, but human injuries can’t always be resolved so easily. Make sure you analyze your risks, and train multiple people on proper emergency response and use of the first aid kit.

What Do I Do After a Pipe Break?

8/15/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage What Do I Do After a Pipe Break? Clean up after flood damage in Clear Lake, TX

When you're dealing with bursting pipes, a visit from water damage professionals is one of the best things you can do to prevent mold growth and secondary damage. While you wait for that Clear Lake, TX, expert to arrive, there are some steps you can take to avoid further damages.

1. Turn Off the Water

The first step is to stop water from flowing into your home. As soon as you discover the leak, turn off the main water supply to the home. This way you don't have to try to figure out where the water is coming from or mess with water pressure. Make sure that all your family members know where the main water shut-off is because you may not always be home to take care of bursting pipes yourself.

2. Drain the Pipes

After shutting down the water to your home, open up your faucets with the cold-water knob. Flush each toilet once or twice to drain water from the pipes. Turn off the hot water heater and then use the hot water knob to flush hot water from the pipes. By now, the leak should have stopped.

3. Look for the Broken Pipe

Even if you don't have the tools or experience necessary to fix the broken pipe, you'll save a lot of time by locating the source of the trouble. A break in a major water line will be more expensive and take longer to repair than pipes under sinks, for example.

4. Remove Water

The longer water from bursting pipes is allowed to sit, the more serious water damage will become. Mop up as much as you can and use a wet/dry vacuum to get all water cleaned up. If the water has had time to seep into any building materials or furnishings, you may need to contact a Clear Lake, TX, professional for cleanup services.