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Responding to Fire Alarms in Your Home

6/21/2022 (Permalink)

Changing battery to a smoke detector You should change the batteries every six months to ensure that you’ll be alerted if there’s a fire.

Fire alarms are essential in every home, and they serve as a warning system in the event of a fire. When the alarm goes off, you need to know what to do. The damages can be costly, so take the necessary precautions to protect yourself, your family, and your belongings.

Know the Fire Alarm Types

Your home will have at least one of several different types of fire alarms. Here are some possibilities and how they work:

  • Smoke detectors alert you of a possible fire once the smoke concentration exceeds a threshold.
  • Heat detectors detect temperature changes associated with fires.
  • Carbon monoxide detectors will go off in the presence of carbon monoxide gas.

Take Precautionary Measures
Be aware of which kinds of fire alarms are in your home and test them regularly to ensure they work effectively. To do so, press the test button on the alarm or use a testing device. You should change the batteries every six months to ensure that you’ll be alerted if there’s a fire. This process is as simple as removing the cover of the fire alarm and replacing the batteries with new ones. You may also consider replacing the backup battery as well.

Protect Yourself
Your safety should be your number one priority. When the alarm goes off, stay calm. If possible, address the cause of the alarm going off. If you are in an apartment complex, follow the evacuation procedures. Don’t stop to gather belongings. If the fire department arrives, make sure to follow the given instructions.

Assess the Damage
If you suspect that there may be smoke damage, you should call a fire damage restoration service in Nassau Bay, TX, for a proper evaluation. These professionals will assess the situation and make necessary repairs to ensure that your home is safe from further damage. You may also consider filing an insurance claim to cover repairs and losses.
Knowing what to do when your fire alarm goes off will help you mitigate damage and understand the best way to protect yourself and your home.

The Need for Mitigation After Storm Damage

6/7/2022 (Permalink)

Flood insurance form on a table with a book. Having flood insurance is helpful.

The Importance of Mitigation Following Storm Damage

Storm damage can run the gamut from flooding, roofing, and other damages. While having a storm and flood insurance is helpful, you cannot wait for an adjuster if you want to protect your home and claim. According to storm remediation services in Dickinson, TX, there are several reasons to act quickly to mitigate damage.

1. Flood Insurance Requirements
Many insurance companies require homeowners to protect their houses against further losses after damage. If a homeowner fails to mitigate problems resulting in other issues, such as water and mold damage, those losses may not be covered. Additionally, the failure to mitigate losses can jeopardize your entire claim.

2. Vandalism and Looting
Mitigation is about more than preventing further flood damage. Storm damage can result in broken windows, holes in roofs, etc. A damaged home is tempting for looters and vandals. These criminals might see a damaged home as an opportunity. Mitigation strategies aim to protect the home by sealing all entry points.

3. Animal Curiosity
Aside from human beings taking advantage of a vulnerable home, many animals will seize the opportunity to establish a nest or den. Even a damaged home can present an ideal home for some animals. Raccoons, squirrels, birds, etc., will likely find a manufactured structure preferable and safer than other options. Thankfully, standard mitigation practices will seal all entry points. You can also install temporary fencing to limit animal intrusion and curiosity further.

4. More Storms
Finally, waiting for an insurance adjuster before performing fundamental mitigation can leave your property vulnerable to future storms. Your insurance will likely not cover any damages occurring because of subsequent storms.
Most storm and flood insurance policies require homeowners to mitigate the possibility of further loss. Failing to protect your home can result in the rejection of a claim. Therefore, it is best to act fast after a storm, not waiting for adjusters and mitigating any sustained damage.

2 Common Questions About Category 2 Water Damage

5/27/2022 (Permalink)

Floor with mud, dirty water enter a building Contaminated water after a leak in La Marque, TX building.

Category 2 Floods and Their Restoration Process

A broken pipe and water damage are among the most difficult things that a business owner must face. When this type of damage occurs, a water cleanup company is generally required to help with mitigation and restoration. This is because water pipe repair is only the first step in getting a business back open. The rest includes categorizing the water and making sure the building is properly sanitized. Here are some commonly asked questions about category 2 floods and their restoration process.

1. What Is a Category 2 Flood?
When the water pipe repair professionals note they fixed your greywater lines, you know you have experienced category 2 water damage. This is simply water that contains contaminants. It will cause discomfort and irritation if you come into contact with it. The most common issues which cause this type of damage include toilet lines, kitchen pipes, and sump pump failure. Once category 2 water enters your business, you should evacuate it immediately.

2. What Measures Are Taken To Restore the Damage?
As soon as there is flooding in your business in La Marque, TX, you should call remediation professionals. After arriving, the first thing they do is develop a contract with the owner, so they have the proper authorization to start working. As soon as they have this authorization, they will start working.
The first thing a company will do is survey your building and look for safety hazards. This includes electrical wires in water or structural issues. When it is safe to enter, they will perform water pipe repair tasks and start cleaning up the flood. Once this is finished, they can replace any damaged materials, so your business looks new.
When your business is flooded with dirty water, it is likely a category 2 flood. To properly remedy the situation, you should start a suitable remediation process as soon as possible. This will mitigate the damage and restore your business to normal. Hiring professionals is often the best option because of the contaminants in the water.

What Causes Mold and How To Prevent It

5/22/2022 (Permalink)

HEPA air filter HEPA filters are rated to remove 99.9% of particles .03 microns in size from the air that passes through.

Keeping Your Business Mold- Free

Mold growth is a very common problem in commercial buildings, but many business owners still have questions about it. It is important to understand the causes of mold and the preventive measures you can take to keep your business protected.

Mold Causes
One of the most common questions about mold is what causes it. Mold spores are nearly everywhere, but several conditions must be met before the spores can turn into an infestation. The following are the three elements that must be present for mold to thrive:

  • Warmth
  • Food
  • Water

Most indoor locations are warm enough for mold growth, and most places have food and water sources. The ubiquity of these elements is what makes mold growth such a common problem.

Mold Prevention
Although a professional restoration service could quickly address a mold problem at your Clear Lake, TX, business, it is always better to prevent the issue in the first place. As mentioned above, the factors necessary for mold to grow are extremely common. This may make you feel like mold is inevitable, but it is possible to control at least one of the elements: water. Clean up spills as they happen. Standing water is a major risk factor, so address water damage as quickly as possible, preferably within 24 hours. Although you may not be able to see the moisture, high humidity can foster a mold infestation. Keep indoor humidity below 50%. You may need to run a dehumidifier in particularly damp areas.
Additionally, decreasing the mold spores present helps reduce the likelihood of an infestation. Air purifiers with HEPA filters trap spores before they have a chance to grow. Carpet cleaning removes spores that have become trapped in the fibers.
Although the conditions necessary for mold growth are very common, it is possible to prevent serious problems by taking preventive measures. Reducing the moisture and mold spores present in the building goes a long way toward keeping your business mold-free.

Cleanup Considerations After a Fire

5/17/2022 (Permalink)

wet floor with soot, technician extracting water from the floor Fire damage cleanup in Nassau Bay, TX.

Considerations for Fire Cleanup

After a fire, one of the biggest concerns of a property owner is a restoration back to pre-damage conditions. When you consider all the damage within your building in Nassau Bay, TX, you may be focused on figuring out how much it will cost to replace everything. Between the damage from fire, water, and smoke, you’d think your only course of action is to buy new items. According to professional damage restoration providers, this is not the case. A complete fire restoration process isn’t just about replacing damaged items. In many cases, items and surfaces can be spared through special techniques such as dry-cleaning and ultrasonic cleaning.

Content Cleaning Techniques and Approaches
Fire restoration professionals prioritize repair over replacement, which not only saves money but also helps to expedite returning your property to pre-fire conditions. You can expect the experts to examine affected items and employ the best methods for cleanup:

Ultrasonic: Used for nonporous items, as well as electronics
Dry-cleaning: Indicated for light dirt removal or pretreating items for wet cleaning
Wet cleaning: Reserved for medium to heavy dirt and buildup
Document restoration: Special methods for paper items that have sustained smoke, water, and mold
Odor removal: Eliminating post-fire odors, not masking them with fragrances
Carpet and upholstery: Tailored cleaning that is appropriate on an item-by-item basis

Professional restoration means having the knowledge, experience, equipment, and supplies to best clean affected items and surfaces.

The Big Picture
No two fire cleanup efforts will be the same. A more extensive fire to your property in Nassau Bay, TX, may require additional services such as a move out/pack out of items and offsite content storage during the restoration process. A professional approach considers all the details and factors needed to ensure that the process is complete and expedited.
When it comes to fire damage cleanup, a DIY approach is far from complete. Trust your restoration to experienced pros who can leverage their understanding of special cleanup techniques such as dry-cleaning and odor removal to return things back to a pre-damage state ASAP. This comprehensive approach emphasizes repair over replacement for your benefit.

2 Reasons You Want Certified Technicians

4/25/2022 (Permalink)

Technician spraying antimicrobial to prevent mold growth Our team of experts is certified by the IICRC.

Reasons To Hire Certified Technicians

The Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) offers many training courses for technicians who work in the industry. Since it is the leading certifying body in restoration work, you must look for a company that hires certified technicians. Here are a couple of reasons you want these technicians to perform the restoration work on your commercial building.

1. Certified Technicians Operate at a Higher-Standard
Any time you hire a plumber, accountants, or mechanic, you expect them to have a certification in their respective field. Similarly, you expect your doctor to be certified by an appropriate medical association and your lawyer to be certified by the American Bar Association. An IICRC certification is the same idea as this. Having a restoration, cleaning, inspection, or mitigation certificate from this organization ensures that technicians are skilled employees dedicated to providing you with the highest-quality remediation work in the industry.

2. They Keep Up With the Latest Technology and Techniques
A disaster restoration company that has trained employees is going to be competitive in the industry. Aside from this, employees are going to stay motivated and up to date. This is because they regularly attend course offerings. They do this to gain more certifications, renew their existing qualifications, or work toward becoming a master in a restoration specialty. Here, they are exposed to the latest technological and technical advances in the field and learn how to incorporate them into their work. This means that hiring a business with certified employees gives you access to the highest-quality and most advanced service available for your business in Dickinson, TX.

The IICRC is the main certifying body for technicians working in the restoration industry. By looking for a restoration company that has technicians certified by this organization, you can ensure that your business is getting the highest-quality work paired with the most advanced technology and remediation techniques.

A Variety of Techniques Used to Limit Flood Damage

4/18/2022 (Permalink)

Sandbags protecting a neighborhood Sandbags are heavy and labor-intensive.

If you have ever worked to stop a flood, you might have some strong feelings about the ubiquitous sandbag. After all, this method of stopping high waters has been in use for well over a century, and it has many benefits. It is cheap and inexpensive and it forms a strong barrier to incoming water. On the negative side, though, sandbags are heavy and labor-intensive; if you have spent hours stacking them you completely understand this fact. For best results, the bags should be filled about half full and left untied at the top, though folded over. This makes them easier to lift and stack tightly.

Alternatives to the Sand Bag

If sand is not widely available, the bags can be filled with silt, which works nearly as well. Clay is an even more effective substance for flood dams, but it is notoriously difficult to put into bags, a nearly fatal flaw. Several other alternatives are in use during floods:

  • The Hesco Bastion barrier requires heavy equipment and trained installers
  • The Portadam which has been tested by the Army Corps of Engineers
  • The Rapid Deployment Flood Wall showed lower seepage rates than sandbags

A company can also install more permanent barriers. These options include levees and earth berms which seek to divert water away from a building.

Options for Containing Flood Damage
If the water is just too high, your company in La Marque, TX, is likely to take on water. At this point, it is advisable to call in the services of a trained water mitigation team. The company will have a proven process to deal with water damage quickly and efficiently, working to limit the impact on your company and its bottom line. They will quickly remove any standing water, dry out saturated areas and clean surfaces tainted with dirty floodwaters. Both the low-tech sandbag and the advanced skills of a restoration team could play a role in protecting your company.

Why You Should Get a Mold Insurance Endorsement for Your Commercial Building

4/4/2022 (Permalink)

Bathroom wall covered with mold Commercial mold damage in Clear Lake, TX.

Your commercial insurance can pay for emergency restoration services following a fire, tornado or another disaster. However, not every type of peril is covered. For instance, most insurance policies only provide limited coverage for mold damage. That is why you should purchase a mold endorsement.

What Is Mold?

To understand why this endorsement is so important, you first need to learn a bit about mold. This fungus uses spores to reproduce. The spores spread via air and wind currents. All mold needs to grow is:

  • Heat
  • Moisture
  • Oxygen
  • Food

Mold eats various building materials, including carpet, wood, paper and drywall. The fungus then destroys these items as it grows. If left unchecked, mold could harm much of your Clear Lake, TX, property.

When Is Mold Covered by Insurance?

Most commercial insurance policies include a fungus exclusion that prohibits coverage for mold and similar toxins. There are some exceptions, however. Mold that grows following a lightning storm or fire is usually covered.
If the mold results from another peril, your insurance may provide limited fungus coverage. Mold growth that occurs after a flood may also qualify for this coverage if you added a flood endorsement to your commercial policy.

What Is Limited Fungus Coverage?

Limited fungus coverage gives you money for mold remediation services. The insurance funds can go toward the costs of removing the fungus and testing the building to ensure the mold is gone.
Keep in mind that limited fungus coverage only applies if you take all reasonable steps to prevent and limit mold growth on your property. There is also a cap to this mold insurance. Most insurers will only pay $15,000 per occurrence. However, cleanup and restoration can cost much more than that. You thus need an endorsement to supplement this coverage.
Your commercial insurance may include some coverage for mold infestations. However, this may not be sufficient following a major mold loss. A mold endorsement should help you pay for any additional expenses you incur.

5 Things to Know for Winter Storm Preparedness

3/30/2022 (Permalink)

Insulation for pipes It's also important to make sure all the pipes in your home are insulated.

Winter Storm Warnings

If you live in an area such as Nassau Bay, TX, where you face regular winter storm warnings and potential damage, then you may be looking for some tips to winterize your home. Being prepared for winter weather cannot only help keep you warm, but can also help mitigate any storm damage your property may face. There are a few things you may want to consider.

1. Keep Supplies Handy

If you know that a storm may be coming, you may want to keep supplies on hand just in case. These may include supplies for protecting your home, extra food, pet supplies, shovels, batteries and flashlights.

2. Insulate your Pipes

It's also important to make sure all the pipes in your home are insulated if they could be exposed to a winter storm. This will help prevent them from freezing and possibly breaking.

3. Check your Roof

After a storm, you may want to check for roof damage. Doing this as quickly as possible can allow you to find any damage and take the necessary repair steps before a problem gets worse.

4. The Condition of Your Yard

Before a blizzard hits you may want to check your yard for trees with branches that could fall into your home when overloaded with snow. Sloped ground could lead to drainage pooling against your house, and other debris may cause a problem if picked up by the wind. You can take care of these hazards before the storm turns them into a bigger problem.

5. Who to Call for Help

You may also want to keep the number for a storm damage restoration company on hand just in case damage does occur. These professionals have the tools and knowledge needed to repair your home.

When preparing for a winter storm it's a good idea to keep supplies handy, insulate any exposed pipes in your home, and check the condition of both your roof and yard before the storm hits. These things can help you mitigate any damage that may occur. You may also want to have the number for a damage restoration professional handy, just in case.

Don't DIY Tarp Services After a Fire

3/25/2022 (Permalink)

Blue tarp on a roof. Fire tarp services in Dickinson, TX.

Tarp Services After a Fire

Whether the wind has blown a swath of shingles from your roof or a fire has left a gaping hole all the way to the attic, one of the first steps in fire cleanup efforts should be installing a tarp on the roof. With the protection of roofing materials gone, your business may be exposed to rain, wind, and debris. Animals and other trespassers may gain access to the attic. Before you climb up to fix a tarp yourself, consider the following safety information:

  • Never get onto your roof during a lightning storm.
  • Steep roofing surfaces require specialized harness systems.
  • Falls from the roof accounts for 30 percent of construction accidents and up to 75 percent of fatalities.
  • Other risks of working on the roof include electrocution and tool-related injuries.

You could face trouble with your business insurance because of taking risks by going onto your roof.

Fortunately, you don't have to face those risks. Fire remediation and restoration professionals often offer tarp services within a very short time frame and can complete any following roof repair work quickly.

Turn Repairs Over to Professionals

When these fire cleanup professionals arrive, they may bring supplies such as polyethylene sheeting to use as a tarp, long lengths of wood to fasten edges of the tarp, duct tape, screws, tools, and safety equipment. However, the amount of training these professionals have is even more important than any of these tools. As they install the tarp, they'll take steps to ensure protection from water, dirt, and most animal intruders.

Complete Other Tasks

In addition to staying off your roof, protect your well-being and that of your employees and customers by staying out of the property until you have permission from the appropriate officials. Instead of trying to complete repairs, consider making phone calls to your insurance provider, business partners, and any public safety officials, as necessary.

Fire cleanup steps involve a lot of risks. When your Dickinson, TX, company faces fire-related damages, turn the repairs over to experienced crews and devote your attention to other necessary tasks.