How To Care For Your Belongings After Water Damage
Water damage can leave you feeling hopeless, give SERVPRO a call today!
Water damage can be devastating to your belongings and home. When flood waters recede, you might find yourself with some musty furniture, a mildewed carpet, damaged books, or even worse: mold. But there's no need to panic—there are plenty of ways to restore your belongings after they've been exposed to water.
Dispose of items that are ruined
It is not an easy task to complete, but it is important to sort through all of your affected belongings and determine if the belongings are ruined or not. Once you have determined what items are ruined, it's time to dispose of them.
Disposing of items that have been damaged by water can be a challenge. To avoid mold growth or further damage, you need to keep the affected belongings isolated from other items until they are properly cleaned and dried. The best way to do this is by putting the ruined items in plastic bags--you can even seal them with tape if needed--and storing them in a dry place with good ventilation until they can be taken away for disposal.
If your items are wet after a loss, try air-drying your belongings indoors. Open windows to create a natural airflow or use fans to circulate the air throughout your home. You can also dry items in a garage or other dry areas if necessary.
Air drying is usually safe for most materials, but there are still some things you should avoid doing while they're drying:
- Don't expose wet clothing or bedding directly to heat sources like radiators or heaters until they're completely dry.
- Avoid hanging up wet clothes on hooks; instead lay them flat on a surface like carpeting so they don't stretch out of shape as they dry.
If your belongings have been affected by a water loss, there is no surprise that the items might be dirty. The first thing to do is to gently clean the affected items with a cloth or a soft brush. Don't use a pressure washer, steam cleaner, or harsh chemicals. This can cause more damage and make it harder for you to get your belongings back in good condition.
If you have books, albums, or photos that have been damaged, do not attempt to clean them with a soft brush or cloth, this could cause more damage. Instead, allow restoration professionals, such as SERVPRO of Lake Conroe, to clean and repair those items for you!
Call a restoration professional for help
If your belongings have minor water damage, it might be possible to clean the items on your own. If the damage is more severe, don't try to clean them yourself. The best way to restore those belongings is with the help of a professional restoration company. They can help you with drying out items, cleaning them, and disposing of those that cannot be saved. Water damage restoration companies use advanced technology to clean, sanitize, and restore your damaged belongings as much as possible so that it looks like new again!
There are things you can do to avoid further harm to your belongings.
If you have water damage in your home, there are things you can do to avoid further harm to your belongings. If possible, remove all wet items from the area and place them in a safe place. You may want to consider hiring professionals who specialize in drying out homes after a flood or storm has occurred.
If you don't have the time or tools for this process yourself, call a restoration company for content restoration services.
We hope that this guide has helped you understand the process of restoring your belongings after a water damage incident. Water damage can be devastating, but with the right knowledge and tools, you can make sure it doesn't ruin your life!
Potential Kitchen Hazards
When your in need of fire restoration cleanup, give SERVPRO of Lake Conroe a call today!
If you're in charge of your kitchen, you know how important it is to keep an eye out for potential hazards. You don't want to have a fire or any other kind of emergency situation that will force you out of your home. There are many things that can go wrong in kitchens from grease fires to faulty appliances There's plenty of room for disaster if you're not careful. However, there are also many easy ways to prevent these problems from occurring at all.
Cleaning your kitchen floor is an important part of preventing a slip and fall accident. Dirty floors are a common cause of slips and falls, so it's important to keep your kitchen floor clean at all times.
Clean up spills immediately before they have time to dry and stick to the floor. If you can't clean up the spill immediately, use something absorbent like paper towels or a sponge to soak up as much liquid as possible.
Food on the Stove Unattended
A fire hazard is something that could ignite and spread flames. In the kitchen, this can be caused by leaving food unattended on the stove or in the oven. You might think that you'll only be gone for a few minutes, but it doesn't take long for something to get out of hand. For example, if you leave bacon frying without checking on it every few minutes and it burns instead of browning.
Combustible Cooking Materials
If you're still using a gas stove, it's important to know that combustible cooking materials can be flammable. This means they can catch fire and, if left unattended, start a fire without any outside help.
The most common materials in this category are paper products such as napkins and paper towels, kitchen towels Other common combustible cooking materials include wood chips for smoking meats, wicker baskets for use with hot food items like fried chicken wings or French fries, and wooden spoons or spatulas used for stirring foods on the stovetop.
Grease fires are the most common type of kitchen fire. In fact, these types of fires account for about two-thirds of all deaths related to home cooking.
Grease fires can be caused by cooking or heating, but also by using a candle or match as a light source. They can spread quickly and cause serious damage if left unattended. Keep your kitchen clean and organized so that grease doesn't build up on your stovetop or in other places where it could start a fire.
Broken Dishwasher Seals
Dishwasher seals are an important part of your dishwasher. They keep water and food particles from getting into the motor, but over time they can wear out and break. Dishwashers can cause water damage which could leave you without.
Bad Ventilation System
A ventilation system in your kitchen should be designed to remove smoke and fumes from the kitchen. In addition to this primary function, it should have the ability to prevent backdrafts, carbon monoxide poisoning and fire.
The best way to prevent all these things is by maintaining your smoke alarm system regularly. This will ensure that you can quickly respond if there’s ever a problem with your ventilation system or any other safety feature in your home.
Poor lighting can cause accidents, injuries, falls and burns. Poor lighting can also result in damage to your eyes and skin. Accidents may happen if there is not enough visibility in the room, which can cause trip and fall hazards leaving you with injuries.
Use the following tips to help prevent kitchen hazards in your home or business. Ensure you area is safe and secure for yourself or employees.
Tips for Sheltering in Place During a Hurricane
Check your local TV stations for urgent updates on the storms status
Hurricane season is no time to mess around. A shelter-in-place hurricane plan can help you stay safe if you get caught in a storm. Here are some steps you can take to make sure your family is prepared for what's ahead:
Check and Charge Batteries
The first thing you should do is make sure your battery-powered devices are fully charged. This includes a battery-powered radio or television, phone charger and lantern, flashlight, and radio.
Have a Plan for Charging
Knowing what you can do to charge your devices before the hurricane hits is crucial. Have a plan for charging your devices as soon as it's safe to do so, and know where you can charge them.
If there is no power, have a backup plan for charging your devices in the event of an outage. You may need to use car batteries or generators to create a power source for these devices.
Make Sure You Can Receive Timely Alerts
There are several ways to get the latest news, alerts, and weather information during a hurricane:
Check your local radio stations for updates.
Check your local emergency alert system (EAS). Some areas use EAS to broadcast emergency messages, such as evacuation notices or shelter-in-place directions.
Check your local TV stations' websites and social media feeds for urgent updates on the storm's status and its impact on your area. You may also want to consider subscribing to email newsletters from these sources so you don't miss any important announcements when they're made.
Read the latest news online via online newspapers, which usually have dedicated hurricane coverage teams that work around the clock during major storms or natural disasters like floods or wildfires to bring their readers up-to-date information about what's happening with each one without having them constantly checking back every five minutes throughout those events just waiting for something new because nothing was happening before but now there is!
Stay Up To Date
In the event of a natural disaster, it's important to be prepared and stay informed. Listen to battery-powered radio or television for information on shelter locations, evacuation routes, and emergency relief efforts. You may lose power during the storm or have problems with your cell phone service after the storm passes.
If you have difficulty locating a new shelter location or don't know where you will go after your home is flooded, listen to local radio stations and check local news websites for updates.
Have Cash on Hand
If the storm is especially bad, you won't be able to rely on the ATM for your financial needs. Make sure you have some cash on hand before the storm hits in case there are no ATMs when things get back to normal again.
Cash will be necessary for buying food, water, and other supplies. It’s also helpful if you need to pay for emergency repairs or services after a natural disaster strikes—you can use cash as payment with local contractors while waiting for insurance companies to reimburse you later.
If you are in a high-risk area and have time before the storm hits, identify one or more safe rooms in your home. The most important criterion for a safe room is that it is on the first floor and has no windows. If you have an interior stairway, it’s also ideal to include this as part of your sheltering plan—the top of the stairs should be well above flood levels if there is water damage to your house.
If you are in a two-story home, seek shelter on the lowest floor.
- Stay away from windows. If your house has a basement and/or storm cellar, move there quickly. If not, find a room with no windows or glass doors that can be closed.
- Check for loose objects such as lawn furniture or patio furniture that could fall on someone during high winds or falling debris. Also, look out for hanging pictures that may become dangerous projectiles if they break loose from their hooks on walls or ceilings (and don't forget to remove any valuable items).
- Find a room where you can get to the bathroom easily if necessary.
The best way to prepare yourself is by learning what needs to happen before, during, and after the storm hits your area so that when the time comes you'll know exactly what steps need to be taken and how to do them.
We hope that these tips will help you prepare for the next hurricane. Remember to stay safe and give SERVPRO of Lake Conroe a call if your Conroe,TX home is hit by a hurricane.
How Long Does a Landlord Have To Fix a Mold Problem?
Mold damage in a Conroe,TX home
When you first move into a new place, it's important to check for mold. Mold can form easily in buildings with poor ventilation and low humidity, which is why it's so common in small apartments or homes with no air conditioning. If you notice mold growing in your home, you should immediately inform your landlord or building management company so they can take action to fix the problem. But how long do they have to respond? And what happens if they don't do anything at all?
In general, the landlord is responsible for any mold growth caused by a defect in the property. If there had been a leaky pipe and water has gotten into the wall and caused a mold problem, then it will likely be the landlord's responsibility to fix that problem. If there was no leaky pipe but rather someone who lived in another apartment had tracked in mud from outside and tracked it onto your floor mat where it dries out and grows, then that would likely not be considered an issue for which your landlord should take responsibility because it occurred outside of their control (i.e., due to someone else's actions).
Expect Reasonable Action
The law requires landlords to take all reasonable steps to control and abate the mold. If they fail to do so, you can sue them for any resulting damages or loss of use of your home—including medical bills and lost wages. Your landlord is responsible for providing a safe living environment for you and your family members, including children under 18 years old. If they don't take steps to protect against mold growth in their units, they could be held liable if someone gets sick from exposure to it during a tenancy (or even afterward).
The length of time it takes for mold remediation depends on the size of the problem:
- Small (less than 20 square feet), contained areas that can be cleaned may only need to wait 24 hours before being able to reoccupy them. Any other space will require more than 24 hours before being reoccupied.
- Large areas (>20 square feet) or ones where you can't easily access all surfaces should be given at least 48 hours before someone can reoccupy them without any concerns about exposure to mold spores or mycotoxins.
A mold inspection is an important step in the process of dealing with a mold problem in your rental property. A qualified inspector will be able to do a thorough investigation and determine if you have a mold issue, how serious it is, and what steps need to be taken next. The inspector should always wear protective clothing when inspecting for mold (including gloves, goggles, and a mask) because if there's any chance that they'll inhale or ingest spores, they need to protect themselves from these harmful substances.
Mold inspections often cost between $100-$300 per hour depending on where you live and which company performs it. Make sure you find an inspector who offers competitive rates before hiring them. Most inspectors will provide readings on their findings either verbally or via written report after completing testing; however, some may require additional time for analysis before providing this information. If this seems like too much time than necessary just ask them about it directly--they should be upfront about any delay.
Mold Mitigation, Management & Remediation
Mold remediation can be a complex process that requires specialized skills. There are many variables involved in how long it will take to remediate your home or apartment, including the size of the affected area, moisture levels inside and outside of the property, and airflow throughout the structure.
Additionally, mold mitigation may require determining whether there are other underlying conditions within your property (such as leaks) that need to be addressed before conducting any repairs; sometimes those repairs can take longer than just removing the mold itself. While most professionals will have an estimate for you before beginning work on your home or apartment building so that you know exactly what to expect financially without surprises down the road (and so they know what kind of budget they've got), some jobs are more complicated than others—so it's always worth asking about if something goes wrong during remediation.
You and your landlord should be able to work together to solve the problem of mold. If you have a mold problem, you should first contact your landlord and ask them to inspect it. Once they do so, they will either fix the problem or tell you how long it's going to take before they do something about it.
If you have a mold problem in your Conroe, TX rental property, give SERVPRO of Lake Conroe a call today!
3 Tips To Prevent Home Candle Fires
A battery-powered option takes away the risk of fire.
Prevent Home Candle Fires
People often light a candle at home to enjoy the warming scent it gives off, but overlook the risk of starting a fire in their home. Candles are one of the most common causes of a residential fire. Luckily, there are steps you can take to prevent one in your Magnolia, TX, home.
1. Avoid Nighttime Burning, the Biggest Candle Fire Cause
Many will light a candle to help them relax after a long day, but this can lead to a dangerous home fire if neglected. Nighttime candle burning is risky if you happen to fall asleep while the flame's still aglow, or go to bed without remembering to blow out the candle. It's best to avoid nighttime burning altogether to alleviate this risk.
2. Keep Candle Away From Anything That Might Burn
A majority of candle fires happen as a result of flammable items surrounding the candle. This can lead to quick destruction of a home and require the help of a fire damage restoration company to perform smoke cleanup and structural repairs. Be sure to keep any lit candle a safe distance away from items that could burn, such as paper documents, cloth or flammable liquids.
3. Opt for a Flameless Alternative
The foolproof way to avoid a candle fire is to use a flameless alternative. If you use candles for ambiance, a battery-powered option takes away the risk of fire. Additionally, don't rely on candles for light in an emergency power outage but stock up on flashlights instead. These alternatives can best keep your home and family safe from a potential fire.
A candle fire is more common than you think but luckily can be avoided by taking smart, preventative measures. Keep your home safe by avoiding burning at night, keeping candles away from flammable items and choosing a flameless alternative.
What Are The Common Causes of Water Damage
Leaks can be caused by a number of factors.
Common Causes of Water Damage
Water damage is one of the most common home emergencies. It happens when a water source, usually a sink or toilet, leaks and causes water to seep under your flooring into the crawl space below. This can happen in any room of your house and whether you live in an apartment or a house, it affects everyone. The good news is that you can avoid this from happening by taking some simple steps. By being prepared for water damage issues, you will be able to deal with them quickly if they occur
Plumbing, Sink, Toilet, and Washing Machine Leaks
Plumbing leaks are a common cause of water damage. Leaks can be caused by a number of factors, including loose pipes, worn-out washers or hoses, and corrosion. Toilet leaks often occur when the ballcock in your toilet tank breaks or gets stuck inside the tank, resulting in an overflow that results in foul odors and stains. You may also notice wet spots on your floor near the baseboards or walls; this is likely due to a leaky toilet seal that causes water to spill over into nearby areas.
Sinks can also leak when faucet washers wear out or get stuck on debris buildup within them, which allows more water than usual to escape through these openings even when they're not being used. Another common source of sink leaks comes from under-the-sink drains—if these drains become clogged with hair and dirt particles (which often happen because they're difficult to reach), then it can cause excessive water pressure buildup behind them when you turn on one of those drains' faucets such as hot/cold taps or shower-heads; this pressure buildup results in flooding due to cracks opening up within those drains' surfaces after being subjected too much stress over time without proper maintenance!
Frozen Pipes/ Pipes Bursting
If you live in an area where freezing temperatures are common, it’s important to be aware of the signs that your pipes might be about to burst. If you find yourself with a frozen pipe, there are some steps you can take before calling a plumber.
First and foremost: don't try to thaw the pipe yourself by running hot water through it! This can cause small cracks in the pipe wall that will only get worse as time goes on. Instead, use a hair dryer or heat gun at a safe distance from the affected area until it's no longer frozen (this may take hours).
If this doesn't work and you have no other choice but to call for professional help—and believe us when we say this is not something you want happening again.
Leaking Water Heater Tank
The water heater tank is the most common cause of water damage in your home. Water heater tanks can leak for a variety of reasons, such as a faulty pressure relief valve or even corrosion. If you suspect that your water heater tank could be leaking, check it out immediately and take care of any issues that arise before they worsen.
Leaking water heaters are dangerous and can cause mold growth around your home. In some cases, leaking tanks may even cause structural damage to walls or floorboards if the leak is not addressed right away.
Roof leakage is another source of water damage, and can be caused by a variety of reasons:
- a roof leak due to faulty roofing material, such as shingles or tiles
- an undetected leaky roof joint or flashing
- damage from the natural elements, such as storms and high winds, which may cause leaks in an otherwise undamaged roofing system
Call the Professionals
In the case of water damage, it is critical to address the problem immediately. The longer you wait, the more damage will occur and the more expensive it will be to fix. Water damage restoration companies have different water extraction methods and equipment that allow them to remove water from your home or business in a timely manner. These companies specialize in wet carpet cleaning, mold remediation, and other services related to water removal and repair. In addition, they can help identify any underlying problems with your plumbing system so that they do not happen again in the future.
Water damage can be very stressful and overwhelming. Making sure that you are hiring SERVPRO of Lake Conroe to handle the situation is critical. We will have your Conroe, TX home back to normal as soon as possible.
Why You Should Frequently Clean Your Dryer Vent To Prevent a Fire
Clean your dryer's lint filter after every load of laundry.
Why Should You Clean Your Dryer Vent Frequently To Avoid a Fire?
Every household should take preventative measures to avoid a home fire. But one leading cause that often goes overlooked is an unclean dryer vent. Material buildup and high heat from the dryer can result in a lint fire. Here's what you should do to prevent one from happening in your Splendora, TX, home.
Routinely Clean Dryer To Prevent a Lint Fire
The lint from your clothes will collect during the drying process and without proper removal, there is a risk of a dryer fire starting. Be mindful of this every time you put a load of laundry into the dryer and get into the habit of regular cleaning. This includes:
- Cleaning the dryer's lint filter after every load of laundry
- Reaching into the back of the dryer where lint can also collect
- Remove lint from the vent pipe roughly every three months
This routine cleaning can be done yourself or you can also enlist a professional, particularly if you notice your clothes are taking longer to dry.
Check Dryer Maintenance
Proper maintenance checks will keep your dryer running safely and effectively. Inspect areas around the dryer for potential fire hazards, including a damaged vent system, animal nests blocking a vent and any flammable items placed nearby.
Understand Dryer Safety Practices
A lint fire can cause severe damage to your Splendora, TX, home and often require the help of a fire damage restoration company afterward. Practice safe measures to limit your risk of a drying machine fire. These include not drying items containing plastic, rubber, foam or anything that has come in contact with a flammable liquid, not using your dryer without a lint filter and not leaving the house with the dryer running.
Be sure to perform regular cleaning and maintenance checks on your dryer along with using safe practices to prevent a fire in your home.
Fire Prevention Tips
Keep the fire extinguisher handy
Fire Prevention Methods
Fires are often a major cause of business interruptions and building damage. While no business can be 100 percent fireproof, there are several steps you can take to prevent fires and minimize the effects should one occur. The following tips cover fire prevention methods that small businesses can adopt to make their workplaces safer.
Keep the Flammable Items Away
The best way to prevent fires is to keep flammable items away from heat sources. If a fire starts in your home, the following tips can help you extinguish it quickly:
- Never use candles in the home. A candle's waxy container can catch fire and spread the blaze. Instead of using candles, use battery-operated or electrically powered lights instead.
- Don't smoke in bed or leave cigarettes unattended while they burn out on their own. Cigarettes may start fires if they're left unattended and burn down too far before being noticed by someone nearby who can put them out quickly before they have time to spread any further than just one cigarette butt at a time! The same goes for other forms of tobacco products including cigars/cigarillos (little cigars) too... so no smoking indoors folks!
- Keep matches out of children's reach; store lighter fluid in locked cabinets, far away from appliances that could cause ignition; make sure all appliance cords are properly secured; secure electrical cords under rugs so they don't pose tripping hazards
Check Electronic Cords Regularly
Check the cords on your electronics regularly to watch out for signs of damage or fraying. Replace any damaged cords immediately. Do not use extension cords with your electronic devices, and never overload outlets with multiple devices plugged in at once.
Keep the Fire Extinguisher Handy
Check the expiration date. If your fire extinguisher is past its expiration date, replace it immediately. Check the pressure gauge. Before you use a fire extinguisher to put out a blaze, check that it still has enough pressure to do so by turning the valve on top of the nozzle and listening for escaping air (or feel for escaping air if your extinguisher does not have an audible leak). If no air comes out, do not use this extinguisher; buy a new one or borrow another from someone else. Test spray pattern and range by aiming at an area where nothing flammable can catch on fire (such as some dirt) from about 12 feet away. Do this test every six months to ensure that your extinguisher still works properly.
Consider a Sprinkler System
A well-maintained sprinkler system can help you contain a fire before it becomes a disaster. Sprinkler systems should be checked regularly, both for proper operation and to ensure that there is no damage that could lead to system failure.
Inform and Educate All Employees
Make sure that all your employees know how to prevent fires, how to use fire extinguishers, and how to evacuate in case of an emergency. Fire extinguishers are not a substitute for fire alarms; they should be used only in the event of an emergency. Ensure that all fire extinguishers are inspected annually by a certified technician and stored in a secure location where they cannot be tampered with or damaged. If a person encounters smoke while working on an electrical panel or other similar situation where there is no immediate danger from flames or sparks, do not try to put out the fire yourself! Call 911 immediately so professionals can respond quickly and safely assess the situation before risking injury.
Fire is a dangerous threat, but it doesn’t have to be. By following these tips and taking all the precautions you can, you can help keep your business safe from fire damage.
If your business does succumb to fire, give SERVPRO of Lake Conroe a call! We will help get your Houston business back up and running quickly.
5 Steps To Check Your Sprinklers To Avoid Flooding
Maintain your irrigation system.
As the weather warms in Montgomery, TX, it’s essential to check your sprinkler system before watering your lawn. Regular irrigation maintenance keeps your utility costs down and prevents water damage.
How To Check Your Sprinkler System
Checking your sprinklers before turning them on prevents problems like broken sprinkler heads and pipes. Follow the steps below to inspect your system.
1. Wait until it’s warm.
Do not turn your sprinklers on until after the last frost date to prevent freezing pipes.
2. Turn on water valves.
Your water valves are probably winterized and turned at a 45-degree angle. Turn the two valves connected to your building back to their original position.
3. Remove the sprinkler heads.
Take off all sprinkler heads and check for damage. Replace if necessary.
4. Turn on the water main.
Locate your system’s water main and very slowly turn it on. The slow release of water keeps built-up pressure from bursting pipes.
5. Check for leaks and proper irrigation.
As water runs through the sprinklers, check for possible leaks and ensure the system adequately waters your lawn. If no problems are present put back the sprinkler heads.
Why Irrigation Maintenance Matters
Check your sprinkler system annually to avoid over or underwatering your lawn. Adjust for the seasons and how wet or dry your grass is. Oversaturating the ground can lead to sprinkler flooding and potential water damage. Check your pipes after the ground thaws to avoid needing restoration services.
Regular maintenance saves you time and money. By checking your sprinklers often, you may find minor issues that you can resolve before they become more expensive problems later on. An efficient system cuts down your water bill, as you only use the water you need. You can also replace parts of your sprinklers with newer, more economical technology.
Irrigation maintenance ensures your sprinkler system runs smoothly and efficiently all season long. Save yourself time and money and prevent flooding by checking your sprinklers before turning them on.
Equipment You Can Use To Remove Smoke Odor in Your Home
Ozone machines are often used in the process of smoke cleaning.
Remove Smoke Odor in Your Home
Removing smoke in your home in Splendora, TX, after it has been damaged by a fire can be a difficult, time-consuming process, and even after scrubbing and cleaning, the smell of smoke may still be present. However, with the right equipment, smoke cleaning can be simple and effective.
1. Air Filtration Devices
There are a wide variety of air filtration devices that are often used after a home has been impacted by a fire. Air filtration devices help to make the air in the home safe to breathe and can also lessen the smell of smoke simultaneously. Many of these devices use HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) filters in their machines because HEPA filters are able to capture small particles out of the air.
2. Ozone Machines
Ozone machines are often used in the process of smoke cleaning because the machines are incredibly effective. First, the ozone machine is placed in the area that has been affected by smoke. Large homes may require the use of more than one ozone machine. These machines change the makeup of smoke particles through oxidation. As a result, the smell of smoke can be eliminated.
3. Thermal Foggers
Thermal foggers are specialized pieces of equipment that can help to assist in removing smoke odor throughout the home. Fogging involves, as the name suggests, a fog being released into the area that has smoke damage. The fog particles can reach into small places, such as in minuscule cracks, in the same manner that smoke particles can reach into such places. The fog is then able to neutralize the odor of smoke.
Using equipment such as air filtration devices, ozone machines and thermal foggers can make the process of smoke cleaning less labor-intensive. Some homeowners whose houses have been damaged by fires find it useful to get in touch with fire and smoke damage restoration experts when they are unsure about neutralizing odors.