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What To Do When You Suspect Mold

2/18/2020 (Permalink)

Black mold growing under linolium. Mold growth under linolium in Layton, UT home.

When you notice the presence of mold in your Layton, UT, home, a quick offense is the best defense against significant damage. If you've noticed any of the following signs, don’t wait to schedule a professional mold assessment.

  • A musty smell in a certain area of the home
  • The heater or air conditioner has a moldy smell
  • The sight of mold, especially on grout, the wall, floor, and ceiling
  • High levels of humidity
  • Condensation on windows and exposed pipes
  • Damp areas in the basement
  • Wall or ceiling stains


Of course, there are other warning signs, such as warping or peeling paint and clogged gutters. Don't wait for several symptoms of mildew to appear; take action at the first sign of trouble.

3 Steps to Follow When You Suspect Mold 



Store-Bought DIY Tests

There are a few options when it comes to completing a mold assessment. You could simply buy a test kit. There are sometimes available at home improvement stores. Of course, this route is inexpensive, but it's also a notoriously unreliable and inaccurate option. These kits generally provide a limited picture of the existing particles within a specific area at that time. You may get a positive or negative response, but you won't get information such as how widespread the mold is and the types of mold within the space. If you do use a test kit, get a few kits and perform multiple tests.

Professional Testing

Professionals, such as certified mold specialists, may use one or more types of tests to get thorough information. These tests are often done on the air, surfaces of the home, and bulk materials. Samples are sent to a laboratory where particles are views under a microscope. Laboratory results can give you an idea of whether you have black mold, what other types of mold are present, and the concentration of the molds. The technicians completing the assessment can give you an estimate of how much the damage has spread.

Safe Cleanup and Recovery

If the mold assessment is positive and spores have spread throughout your Layton, UT, home, turn the situation over to mold cleanup and remediation professionals. These experts have the equipment and training necessary to complete the job safely and efficiently.

How a Fire Damage Estimate Is Made

2/10/2020 (Permalink)

Window frame and wall damaged with soot and smoke. Fire damage in Layton, UT.

No business owner wants to imagine a devastating fire in one of their commercial properties. If your building in Layton, UT, catches fire, you may be overwhelmed by the amount of work needed to get it back to normal. Hiring a fire restoration company that specializes not only in providing a clear estimate but also the bulk of the restoration services can simplify the cleanup process.

Fire Damage Estimate


Inspection

When technicians first arrive at your building, in addition to surveying the central location that contains the most fire damage, they inspect every area that could have been affected by the fire:

  • Windows
  • Roof
  • Crawlspace
  • Basement


When they find damage that needs repair, they make note of it so that they can include it in the overall cost. If your restoration company is equipped to handle all the repairs itself, the technicians can get started on the cleanup pretty quickly. Otherwise, they may have a system in place to coordinate with outside contractors.


Distribution


Many types of repairs can be needed after a commercial fire. You want to be assured that the people working on your building are experts in the specific tasks they are completing. The restoration company documents the work that needs to be done and distributes the assignments among its various teams. By choosing a company that handles all or most of the repairs in house, you can expect a lower estimate than if you have to bring in qualified specialists from outside the company.


Insurance


Another benefit about streamlining your repair process with just one company is that the technicians can communicate directly with your insurance company on your behalf. Rather than having to compile several estimates from different places, you have one report that contains everything. An online reporting system for each claim where both you and your adjuster can access it whenever it's needed makes the process even easier.


You hope that you never have to deal with fire damage in your commercial property. Having one company to handle the whole restoration process can make coming up with a comprehensive, affordable estimate easier.

Bathroom Leaks - It Is All About Location

2/7/2020 (Permalink)

Flood cuts performed on walls around toilet Bathroom leaks can be a leading cause to residential water damage in Layton, UT.

If you suspect you have a shower or bathtub leak, you will probably begin looking for signs of water damage to determine the source of the problem. The difficulty in identifying a bath or shower leak is often complicated by the bathroom’s location in the home. The lavatory position may also determine how quickly the leak can be found and how much damage may result from the seepage. Here are some common problems associated with restroom leak locations.

  1. When a leaking bathroom is on a second or third floor, water may drip into the ceiling below.

This type of seepage is often discovered quickly; however, locating the source of the water may be more difficult. A defective toilet wax seal, a leaking water supply line, or an overflowing sink could all cause a ceiling water stain.

  1. A tiled shower stall can develop hairline fractures in the unsealed grout.

As a result, the water can leak down the wall and absorb into the wood, sheetrock, and insulation. When the water does eventually begin to saturate the area, it could leak into a connected room instead of the bathroom.

  1. When a bathtub leak is over a crawlspace, the leak may persist for weeks or months before being discovered.

Since most homeowners do not visit the crawlspace very often, it is frequently the secondary damage that can draw attention to this type of leak. A soggy floor, buckling floorboards, or a loose toilet can mean serious leakage has occurred.

  1. A shower pan leak above a concrete slab can also develop drips that go unidentified for months.

The water may pool out into neighboring rooms and can often be found in closets or hallways. Buckling wood trims or baseboards are often the first signs of this type of leak.

No matter what type of shower or bathtub leak you find, calling in a water repair and restoration team can help alleviate further damage in Layton, UT. While you may want to fix the leak yourself, the professional crew may be better equipped to find all the hidden water damage.

Keeping Your Kitchen Safe From Fires

1/30/2020 (Permalink)

Fire above frying pan while cooking Kitchen fires can be devastating for your Layton, UT home.

A house fire in Layton, UT, can be devastating, and fire damage professionals report that most house fires begin in the kitchen. A kitchen fire can spread throughout the house in just a matter of minutes. Because a kitchen fire is often caused by basic carelessness, taking note of some simple tips for fire prevention in the kitchen can save you a lot of unnecessary heartache.

5 Tips For Fire Prevention


1. Never leave the stove unattended. Do not leave the kitchen while pots and pans are heating on the stove. Always turn off the heat before taking a phone call or answering the front door.

2. Watch your heat source. Carefully monitor what you are cooking, especially if you are cooking with grease. A grease fire can happen suddenly if the grease is overheated. Never cook grease on high heat, and if grease begins to smoke, turn off the heat immediately.

3. Remove flammable items from the stovetop. Pot holders and kitchen towels can easily catch fire. Do not set utensils too close to the heated range. While it may seem like one of the most obvious tips, food packaging and paper towels should never be placed on the stovetop itself.

4. Be mindful of your clothing. Loose fitting or long flowing sleeves can be a fire hazard. Do not wear anything that could get caught on a pan or fall into the heating range.

5. Be ready to extinguish a fire. You should always have a fire extinguisher that is easily accessible in your kitchen. You can also quickly extinguish some fires by smothering them with a lid or a cookie sheet. If there is a grease fire, do not use water. Instead, immediately douse it with baking soda or salt. Be sure to turn off the heat.

Cooking in the kitchen should be fun and enjoyable. Following these tips for fire prevention in the kitchen can remove unnecessary anxiety and keep your focus where it should be on the joy of preparing food for family and friends.

Temporarily Fix Your Wind-Damaged Roof

1/30/2020 (Permalink)

Hail hitting on top of roof during storm.  Hail during a heavy storm can damage your roof and cause further damage if not fixed quickly.

High winds can cause considerable harm to your business’s building. What should you do after discovering a roof leak as a result of wind damaged roof? It can take days to weeks to get a roofer out to complete repairs. A compromised structure may lead to additional water damage repairs needed. Here are three steps to take to temporarily keep ongoing inclement weather from causing any more unnecessary destruction.

3 Steps to Temporarily Fix Your Wind-Damaged Roof And Avoid Further Damage



1. Inspect the Damage

The first action is to inspect the damage. You will need to get onto the roof safely by using a sturdy ladder. Locate the source of the roof leak. The cause may be obvious, like a visible hole, or you may have to examine things more closely. Look for areas where water may be flowing over sections of missing or damaged shingles.

2. Patch Holes

Plywood can be easily cut to cover any holes. Cut pieces large enough that your patch will extend several inches beyond the hole on every side. Then you can use roofing nails or deck screws to attach the plywood to the existing structure.

3. Cover the Surface

Large, durable tarps can be used over the patched holes and areas where missing shingles are discovered. Use the thickest tarps available. For this type of temporary fix to be effective, be certain that the tarping material goes over the roof’s peak.

Tarps should be pulled tightly and secured around the entire perimeter to ensure they don’t blow away or allow rainwater to be seep underneath. Rope or cord can be used to hold the material down, or you may choose to nail the tarps to the building’s fascia board.

Temporary roof repairs can last from days to weeks, buying you the necessary time before a permanent, professional repair can be completed on your roof leak. Safely following the steps outlined can help mitigate any additional storm damage to your business in Layton, UT.

Teaming Up: How Disaster Response Companies and Insurance Agents Work in Tandem

1/30/2020 (Permalink)

SERVPRO trucks on standby ready when the call comes in. SERVPRO is on standby 24/7.

No one in Kaysville, UT, wants to think about dealing with flooding at home following a major storm. These disasters can cause widespread damage and may even destroy parts of your home, if not your entire house altogether. Two groups of professionals will play a vital role in easing you through the recovery process: a professional storm restoration company and your insurance provider. When these two entities work together, you can get through an otherwise awful situation.

The Aftermath

Once you discover a flood or water damage in your home after a big storm, you need to act quickly. Delays can only make the problem worse and damage more costly. Here’s what you should after a flood:

• Safely exit your home; only take items with you that you can easily and safely carry.
• Contact a reputable, experienced storm response company to assess the damage and provide cleanup services.
• Get in touch with your insurance company to report the incident and file a claim.

What the Professionals Will Do First

A storm restoration team from SERVPRO will start off by inspecting the flooded area and making note of the damage the water caused. A technician will record what items and areas of the home suffered and will then come up with a plan of how to clean up and repair the damage. SERVPRO will communicate with your insurance agent, and the two companies will get on the same page so you’ll get proper coverage.

What Are the Advantages?

Time is of the essence when it comes to repairing flood damage. It’s also vital that your insurance company initiates the claims process so you don’t have to worry about paying for expensive repairs to the issues. Because SERVPRO is thorough in every step of its work, you can rest assured that the insurance company will have all the information it needs to do its part in a timely manner.

Don’t risk hiring the wrong storm restoration group. Get in touch with SERVPRO right away so you’ll get the best disaster response and the fastest response from your insurance agent.

Secondary Damage: Finding Mold After a Flood

1/9/2020 (Permalink)

Black mold in wooded floors in residential home. Wood floor with mold damage in a Layton, UT home.

Finding Mold After a Flood

If a storm causes water damage to your home, there are many good reasons to get the problem taken care of as soon as possible. Avoiding mold growth is one of the main benefits of quick mitigation. When many homes in Layton ,UT, are affected by the same storm, however, water restoration specialists may not get to your repairs before mold starts to grow. It can take as little as 24 hours for a mold problem to begin. When that happens, the technicians may need to add mold remediation to their task list to fix the secondary damage. Here are the steps they take to do that.

  1. Remove Water

Water is a major contributing factor to developing mold issues, so it makes sense that in order to combat mold, all standing water must be removed. After that happens, surfaces must be dried.

  1. Isolate Affected Area

Because mold spores are airborne, the area containing the mold growth needs to be shut off from the rest of the house. This prevents it from spreading to other areas.

  1. Remove Damaged Materials

Everything that the mold touches must be removed from the area. This not only includes items in the space but the parts of the structure, such as walls or flooring, that show signs of mold as well.

  1. Clean the Area

Mold tends to latch on to dirt and bacteria. Disinfecting the area makes it less hospitable to any spores that are looking for a place to land.

  1. Test the Area

After all visible traces of mold are removed, the problem is likely resolved. To be sure, however, experts can test the area for concentrated patches of mold to ensure that they didn't miss anything.

The best way to treat mold growth, of course, is to prevent it. If you don't get to it in time, however, experts can perform these mold remediation steps to get rid of the problem.

Why You Need Professionals for Roof Tarp Services

1/9/2020 (Permalink)

Fire and soot damage in roof of residential home. Roof and siding fire damage in a Layton, UT home.

When fire damages your building, one of the most important parts of fire cleanup to tackle immediately is damage to the roof. The heat and flames of the fire may have weakened roofing structures or left gaping holes, leaving your property open to the weather. Firefighters may have opened holes in the roof to be sure there weren't hidden pockets of fire. No matter how those damages were caused, you need quick repairs, so you can get your commercial property back in shape as quickly as possible.

Don't Postpone Repairs

What's at risk? When you don't treat damage to the roof immediately, your business could suffer in a number of ways.

  • Rain, wind, and other environmental elements could damage the interior of the building and any furnishings and inventory inside.
  • Vandals and thieves may enter your building, increasing your losses.
  • Weakened building materials could affect the stability of surrounding structures.
  • Failure to control damages could impact your insurance coverage.

Dangers of DIY Tarping

One of the first things many property owners do is to install tarping, and it may seem like a few 2x4s and some heavy-duty clothes will do the trick. However, temporary covers are notorious for providing too little in the way of serious protection. Instead of leaving yourself and your property open to further losses, talk to fire cleanup professionals about tarp services.

Reach Out to Professionals

Professionals tackle roof repair by applying an emergency protective cover to prevent further interior damage and protect against more structural damage. If weather doesn't allow for long-term repairs, the emergency repairs will protect against further environmental exposure. After assessing the extent of the damage, professionals will often work with insurance companies as they repair the structural integrity of your roof and complete the reconstruction of your roofing.

There's enough fire cleanup work for you to handle without worrying about the roof as well. This is one area that should always be turned over to Layton, UT, professionals.

Basic First Aid for Burn Care

1/2/2020 (Permalink)

Window and wall damaged with fire, covered in soot and smoke. This window suffered severe fire damage in Layton, UT.

When your Layton, Utah, business suffers a fire, fire damage isn’t your only concern. People may be injured, and you may have to contend with first aid on the spot while waiting for help. But what kind of aid can you provide for burns, and how can you tell a minor burn from a major burn?

Aid for burns


Minor Burns

Minor burns may look no worse than a sunburn. They’re usually mildly reddened, with some blistering and pain. To qualify as a minor burn, the burn should be no more than 3 inches in diameter. While it’s best to seek professional medical care, initial emergency burn first aid for minor burns involves:

• Using a cold wet compress or cool water to reduce the temperature of the burned area
• Quickly getting rid of any clothing or tight jewelry that may compress or abrade the area
• Using lotion to soothe, preferably something water-based with aloe
• Covering the wound with a bandage; keep it loose and use sterile gauze
• Being careful not to apply enough pressure to break blisters
• Providing pain relief with over-the-counter meds as needed

Major Burns

Major burns cause deep traumatic harm, and usually make the skin crisped or leathery. Some patches may appear black, brown, or white char. Major burns are larger than 3 inches, and can be fatal. Steps you should take include:

• Immediately calling 911
• Moving the victim away from the source of the burn or fire damage
• Checking for steady respiration; use CPR/rescue breathing if needed
• Cutting or pulling clothing and restrictive accessories away from burned areas
• Gently covering the burn area with a cool, damp cloth or bandage
• Elevating the burn area above heart level
• Monitoring for shock

Things Not to Do

Be careful that investigating fire damage doesn’t lead to personal injury for yourself. For burn victims, do not submerge major burns in water as this can lead to hypothermia. Never use anything grease-based to cover the burn; grease can seal the heat of the burn against the skin.

Methods for Preserving Personal Belongings After a Fire

12/30/2019 (Permalink)

Paint from door bubbled from the heat of the fire. The paint from this door bubbled from the heat of the fire.

In-home fires can be devastating, and not only can they cause heat damage to a home’s structural integrity, but the smoke and soot that results from a fire can easily affect personal belongings in the home’s interior as well. While unfortunately not everything can be saved from the aftermath of a fire, these methods are available for content cleaning after a fire has occurred:

Methods for content cleaning after a fire


• Dry-cleaning can be attempted before wet-cleaning to eliminate light residue. While there are many ways to clean damaged items, this is the preferred method for smoke or soot-damaged clothing.
• Foam cleaning should be considered for fabrics that are not colorfast or those that may shrink if wet-cleaned.
• Immersion Cleaning requires dipping contents into a cleaning agent.
• Wet-cleaning can then be used for heavier or moderate residue removal.

Restoring Items Constructed From Non-Porous Materials

Not all methods can be used for cleaning all materials. Dry-cleaning should not be used for some items. For example, non-porous materials should be cleaned by using an ultrasonic cleaner. An ultrasonic cleaner uses ultrasound and a cleaning agent to clean damaged items. Cleaning with ultrasound can be useful for preserving an abundance of objects such as jewelry, electronic equipment, and vinyl records.

Cleaning Electronic Items

In the event that personal belongings are moved to content storage during post-fire home renovation, it is wise to keep in mind that time is of the essence when cleaning electronics. After smoke or soot has invaded electrical items, acid that is contained in the smoke residue can begin to corrode metal surfaces. While dry-cleaning clothing may be more of a priority after an in-home fire, electronic items will be hazardous to operate prior to a thorough internal and external cleaning. Local Layton, Utah, professionals may be able to assist in the smoke and soot removal from electronic devices.

An in-home fire is something no one wants to contend with. However, items can be saved afterward if proper content cleaning methods are employed.