5 Steps to Fire Safety
A fire escape plan is a vital part of your family's safety
Protecting your home in Plano, KY, from fire damage is an essential safety precaution. It's important to have a fire escape plan, however, just in case your home does catch fire. The American Red Cross gives several tips on how you can prepare for a fire emergency in your home.
5 Steps to Fire Safety
1. Make a list of emergency contact numbers. The emergency number 9-1-1 is pretty easy to remember, but you will also need to contact your insurance company and fire restoration specialists pretty soon after you vacate your home. Having these numbers stored on your phone or in your backup files online ahead of time can significantly minimize the amount of time it takes to process the damage.
2. Have an emergency escape plan. Everyone in the family should be able to name two ways to get out of every room in your home. That way, if one path is blocked, you can still get to safety. Talk about the plan with family members to ensure everyone understands it.
3. Install and maintain smoke detectors. Your fire escape plan will likely be put into action by the sound of a smoke alarm. Install a detector in a common area on every level of the home and one outside each sleeping area. Test them monthly to make sure they're operational.
4. Establish a meeting point. Decide as a family where you will meet if you get separated after the fire. It could be a neighbor's house or a well-lit convenience store down the block. Everyone should be able to get there quickly on foot.
5. Practice the plan. At least twice a year, have a family fire drill. Go through the motions of evacuating your home as if it were actually on fire so that everyone can get a feel for what the process may be like if it ever becomes necessary.
A fire escape plan is a vital part of your family's safety. While you may never need it, but you'll be glad to have it if you do.
4 Cost-Effective Ways To Flood-Proof Your Building
Sump pumps can save your Smiths,KY building from flooding
Most commercial building owners in Smiths, KY, hate seeing flood damage every time a storm passes through the area. Thankfully, you don't have to resign yourself to this type of damage. You can work with a commercial water damage team to flood-proof your building.
1. Install a pump
Putting in a sump pump can save your building from a lot of flooding. A sump pump removes water from basements by pulling water out of sump basins. This type of equipment is popular in properties that have lower levels below the ground water level.
2. Put up barriers
If enough warning is given before a storm, you can choose to set up barriers. In many areas, sand bags can be used to direct water away from a building's foundation. While this can be a good solution to ward off flood damage, it only works when you have adequate warning about a potential storm. You could also choose to put up permanent earthen barriers around your building to ensure you are always ready for the worst-case scenario.
3. Increase water tightness.
Improving the seal around a building can keep storm damage to a minimum. This could include installing new windows and doors, replacing damaged siding or roofing and caulking around existing windows and doors. If water cannot get into a space, there won't be significant flooding.
4. Reorganize your space.
If you know the basement of your building floods during every heavy rain, you can reorganize how you use the space to minimize the damage done by the storm. Moving important documents and expensive equipment to higher levels may be enough flood proofing for your property.
As a building owner, you want to do everything you can to keep your property in the best shape possible. Putting preventative techniques in place to stop flood damage can help you keep your business operation even after severe storms.
Toilet Overflow: Three Things You Should Know
The water from your toilet is most likely a Category 2
If you are currently dealing with a flooded toilet in your Bowling Green, KY, home, you may not know what to do next. It may be that your toilet overflowed due to a backup or plumbing issue rather than sewer damage but knowing why the water is flowing is only so helpful if you do not know what steps to take to fix the situation. Here are three things you should now about toilet floods.
1. Toilet Overflows Can Have Many Causes
A toilet can overflow for several reasons, but a backup in the toilet or a plumbing issue may be the most likely causes. However, a low flow toilet or septic malfunction could also be to blame. Knowing why you have a flooded toilet is a good first step to understanding what steps to take to remedy the situation. If sewer line damage is to blame, you may have an even bigger problem on your hands.
2. Toilet Water May Be Category 2
There are three nationally recognized categories of water damage: Category 1 is “white” water, Category 2 is “gray” water, and Category 3 is “black” water. White water is considered the least contaminated, while black water is often a cause for concern. The water from your toilet flood is most likely Category 2 water, which requires cleanup but many not be as urgent as Category 3 water.
3. A Professional Sewage Company May Help
Since it may be difficult to figure out what is causing your toilet to flood as well as what category your leak falls into, it is usually a wise idea to call sewage cleanup professionals, so trained technicians can help you with your bathroom disaster. They can arrive on the scene, survey the situation and help you decide what to do next. They can often help you fix the matter, as well.
Toilet overflows can be stressful and intimidating and having to worry about sewer damage can make you even more anxious. Use what you now know about toilet floods to make a sound decision for your home.
All Is Not Lost After Water Damage: Tips for Cleaning and Restoring Building's Contents
School classroom cleanup in Bowling Green, KY
If your building was in a flood, you may be worried about how you're going to clean your building's contents and equipment. Not only is business equipment expensive, but every day the damage goes untouched is another day that you lose money. You can prevent monetary loss and minimize damage by contacting a Bowling Green, KY, water damage remediation team regarding your flooded company and its contents ASAP. The sooner you begin remediation efforts, the less damage your contents are likely to undergo and the sooner you can get back up and running.
The first step of the water damage remediation process involves determining which building contents are worth saving and which need to be destroyed. When assessing the damage, your remediation team will give careful attention to the following materials:
- Carpet padding
- Upholstered office partitions
If non-porous materials such as those mentioned above had been sitting in water for more than 24 hours, and if dry cleaning cannot save them, chances are they are unsalvageable. When a flooded company keeps water-saturated materials, it puts it at risk of mold growth and other costly issues.
Non-Porous Materials are Likely Salvageable
Not all materials are unsalvageable. Non-porous materials such as those mentioned below can likely be cleaned, saved and used once more:
- Stainless steel appliances
- Glass furniture and fixtures
- Granite surfaces
Some semi-porous materials such as tile and concrete may need to be given special consideration.
In some instances, if the water touched any of your office equipment or effected the wiring in your office, your team may recommend that you remove electronics and take them to a specialist for evaluation.
Dealing with a flooded company is never easy, but it doesn't have to be back or bank-breaking either. Contact your Oak Grove, KY, water damage remediation team for immediate and thorough assistance and for help minimizing the cost of damage as much as possible.
Why Waiting For an Adjuster Has Risks
Flooded basement caused by heavy rains in Smiths, KY
You are relieved that you bought flood insurance, but when there has been widespread flood damage in Smiths, KY, it may take a long time before the adjuster makes it to your house. You are probably getting mixed advice. Some people say it is unwise to make repairs before the adjuster comes, but others say it’s your responsibility to prevent subsequent damage. It sounds risky either way, so what should you do? You don’t want to do work that the adjuster denies, but you also have a responsibility and a need to protect your property from further damage.
Here are some initial actions you can take and why:
- Document now. Take videos and photos of all property damage to share with your flood insurance company.
- Tarp exposed areas. If there was damage to your home’s exterior, allowing wind and rain to continue entering, then you should try to prevent this exposure.
- Remove water as quickly as you can. Your flood problem can quickly become a mold problem in as little as 24 – 48 hours. Mold spores are abundant in the air, and colonies multiply rapidly.
- Move belongings out of the water. If you have larger furniture items, they can be blocked or separated from the wet floor with foil to prevent further damage. Remove smaller items from the water.
- Begin the drying process. To prevent mold damage, continue ventilating and drying your property after water is removed. If your electricity is on and safe to operate, you should use fans and air conditioning to aid this process.
These actions are all in the category of preventing additional damage, which reduces costs for everyone. What’s great about working with a reputable flood recovery company is that they likely already have established relationships with flood insurance adjusters, paving a smooth path for the claims process and for getting your home back to normal as quickly as possible.
The Residential Rainbow of Mold
Mold growth on laundry room in a Bowling Green, KY home
Surprisingly, mold comes in an array of colors and hues. When you find green, blue or black mold at your home in Bowling Green, KY, an image of a rainbow, however, is the furthest thought from your mind. What do the colors mean? Why is it growing in your home?
Colors of Mold
There are a variety of colors, but any mold that is visible to the eye (or noticed by the nose) is in need of mold remediation. Common household colors include:
- Frequently known as black mold, the color of this sort may appear more greenish-black. Paper, dust, lint and drywall are popular breeding grounds for this type of mold.
- Green, brown and gray molds are usually found on walls, carpeting or insulation.
- White, green and blue molds regularly live on walls and food.
Causes of Mold Growth
Regardless of the color, all molds flourish in the same environment:
- Microscopic mold spores are always present in the air, but it takes certain environmental conditions for them to grow and spread.
- Areas that are constantly warm and damp are perfect for spores to attach and cultivate.
- In your home, persistent moisture from water damage, flooding or extreme humidity can cause mold to reproduce.
When a spore lands on a moist surface in Bowling Green, KY, mold grows and spreads. Outside, this helps to break down organic materials. Inside, it destroys your walls, ceilings and insulation. Irrespective of the color or surface, if mold is present in your house it must be remediated. Mold remediation specialists are trained to handle all varieties including black mold. Mold cleanup typically includes assessment, containment, air filtration and content restoration. After the air is filtered, it is normal for some spores to remain as mold is a naturally occurring element. However once the source of the continued moisture is resolved, the spores no longer have the proper environment to grow.
Floods Can Cause Unexpected Damage
Flood damage in Plano, KY
Flooding in Plano, KY is a serious business risk. Some businesses, especially those that maintain a lot of inventory, might be more susceptible to losses than others. The fact remains that flood damage could cause a host of problems:
- Data loss
- Rendering your facility uninhabitable
Most companies have business interruption insurance. It's most popular in industries that need to keep working constantly in order to keep up with client orders to fulfill customer expectations. However, business Interruption insurance is not a blank check. Providers will often want to know that their policyholders are doing everything they can to get back to normal operations, such as hiring professional recovery companies.
Keeping Information Safe
Mini companies also rely on detailed records in order to track processes and finances from year to year. This can end up piling up on office computers or in filing cabinets. Smart managers make sure that there are practice is in place, whether they are automated or manual, to maintain off-site copies of a business's most vital records. If client confidentiality is a primary concern, businesses often use flood-proof storage solutions for their information.
Avoiding a Move
Floods have the potential to make a business vacate premises temporarily. However, flooding could also lead to more serious problems, such as black water and structural degradation. There's one main difference between businesses that have to leave for a few days and those that have to move permanently: response time. Forming a partnership ahead of time with a repair company could speed up the process.
There is no way for business owners in Plano, KY, to predict when and where floods might happen. However, keeping cost-effective systems and practices in place to address known risks is always a good idea. While proactive measures are important, acting quickly when flooding strikes is also a key factor in a company's ability to remain in business after a disaster.
Where There's Fire, There's Smoke: How To Eliminate Odors
Fire damage in a Richardsville, KY home
When you walk through your building in Richardsville, KY, after a fire, you may be overwhelmed by the smell of smoke. Fire does more than burn your structure and the things inside it. It also permeates the air with an intense smoke odor, and getting rid of this odor is part of the mitigation process. There are three main methods professional remediation experts use for smoke cleaning.
1. Thermal Fogger
A thermal fogger uses a vaporized solution to neutralize odors in your building. By heating the solvent, the machine produces a fog that it releases into the room. The deodorizing particles find their way into carpet, walls, cracks, crevices and vents to trap smoke particles and absorb them, leaving behind a fresh scent without the use of water.
2. Ozone Machine
An ozone machine creates the same atmosphere that occurs in nature after a thunderstorm. It is effective in smoke cleaning because it purifies the air by traveling the same path that the smoke took through the building and oxidizing its fumes. Technicians seal off the affected area and set up the industrial ozone machines. They vacate the area, letting the machines work their magic, and return later to a room that no longer reeks of smoke.
3. Air Purifier
An air purifier pulls malodorous air into it and releases purified air. The best air purifier to use for the remediation of smoke damage is a HEPA purifier with an activated carbon filter. The HEPA filter can trap extremely small particles. The pores in the activated carbon filter hold smoke particles and neutralize them, ridding the area of odor.
There are many smoke cleaning devices and techniques. After assessing the damage to your building during the walk-through, experts can recommend the method they think would be the most effective in neutralizing the smoke odor in your building so that you can get back to business.
Are Broken Pipes Covered by Insurance?
Drying mats on a hardwood floor in a Smith Grove, KY home
Whenever a disaster strikes your Smith Grove, KY, home, your mind may stray straight to the finances. After all, a flood can cost you a lot of money in repairs and restoration costs and that's a scary prospect. If a broken pipe caused your home to fill with water, will your insurance help pay for the damages? Your residential water cleanup crew may not be able to give you a straight answer because it all depends on the policies you have.
Normal Wear and Tear
Plumbing can take a beating in any home. If you have multiple people living in your house, the plumbing has to deal with even more use. Because of the normal wear and tear that affects the piping, many companies offer an insurance coverage that can help protect you against flooding caused by broken pipes. A regular homeowner's policy, however, may not cut it. You may need to add extra policies, including the following:
With one of these extra policies, you may be able to breathe a sigh of relief even if your home is filled with waters from a plumbing accident. Be sure to talk with your insurance provider to find out what type of coverage you need.
Sometimes there are plenty of warnings that you need to fix a broken pipe. If you have a perpetual leak you ignore, for example, your insurance company may be able to cite this negligence as a reason for denying your claim. Other carelessness that could leave you completely liable for the damages regardless of the policies you hold include lack of heat in cold climates or purposefully putting foreign objects in the pipes.
Every homeowner's policy may be slightly different when it comes to flood protection. Some policies may cover the subsequent damage, such as destroyed flooring, ruined walls and damaged furnishings, of a broken pipe while others may not provide this protection.
Answers to Common Questions About Mold
If you see signs of mold growth, smell a musty odor, find evidence of water leaks, or know of any past flooding, you should take immediate action.
What does mold look like?
Mold can appear in many colors and could appear as a dark spot on the wall or as black specks around the window. Mold in the crawlspace may look like chalky white growth or could be dark spots behind the sink. Many people in Bowling Green, KY, recognize black mold, but it could appear in several colors, beginning with the most common.
Any sign of mold should prompt you to contact a mold remediation expert, even if the growth spot only looks like hard water stains running below the knobs in the sink.
How can you tell if it's bad mold?
Not all types of mold are dangerous, but black mold and other forms of mold in large amounts could lead to expensive repairs and mold cleanup efforts. The best way to prevent extensive damage and repairs is to treat any appearance of mold as if it were bad mold. The only effective and reliable way to tell what type of mold is in a building is to contact an indoor environmental professional.
Who can safely remove mold?
An IEP uses specialized equipment and testing methods to determine which types of mold are on the property, how widespread growth is, how high levels of contamination are, and where mold growth began. DIY tests tend to be inaccurate and could lead to ineffective mold remediation efforts.
When should you take action?
If you see signs of mold growth, smell a musty odor, find evidence of water leaks, or know of any past flooding, you should take immediate action to prevent further growth and to begin mold cleanup. Mold remediation experts in Bowling Green, KY, can get you started. Any time you suspect the presence of mold in your building, you need to act quickly for the protection of your property and those people who live or work in the building.
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