Furnace Maintenance Tips
Change the filters on your furnace on regular basis.
Make Sure Your Furnace Stays In a Good Shape
One of the main ways to ensure that your home in Austin, TX, is a comfortable place to live is by maintaining your furnace and air conditioning systems. Regular maintenance of the furnace is necessary to avoid breakdown. Furthermore, if you neglect your furnace, you may end up needing fire cleaning services from restoration specialists when the system causes fire damage. Here are a few ways to ensure that your furnace stays in good shape.
Before the first cold snap is expected, you need to check to make sure your furnace is working. You don't want to wait until you need it to discover that it requires repair. Turn the unit on to see if it generates heat. If not, one of three things could be the problem:
- Lack of power to source
- Obstruction in air distribution
- Thermostat issues
A qualified technician can accurately and safely diagnose the problem. If the furnace starts to smoke during an inspection, he or she can also probably handle the smoke cleaning.
During the season the heater is used, regular care can help you avoid having to hire fire cleaning services. The simplest way to maintain your furnace is by changing the filters on a regular basis. If too much dust builds up on the filter, it can start to break down. When that happens, there's nothing to keep the dust out of the furnace itself, which can be a significant fire hazard. Excessive dust can also keep the air from flowing through like it needs to.
When spring has sprung, you may have little need of your heater for a few months. This is a great time to schedule its yearly tune up. Maintenance professionals can pinpoint and fix problems before you turn the furnace off for a while rather than letting them go undiscovered for months on end. As an added bonus, warmer weather means you may get a discount on off-season furnace maintenance.
Professionals who specialize in fire cleaning are also great at helping with preventative maintenance. Maintaining your furnace is necessary for your home's safety.
Best Ways to Clean Your Belongings After a Flood
Damaged flooring after a storm.
Content Cleaning After Water Damage
Watching a disaster such as a flood come through your Cele, TX, home is a helpless, heartbreaking feeling. In most cases, there is little you can do once the incident is in full force. Luckily, in many cases, you can salvage your most important belongings and essential parts of your house, as long as you use effective content cleaning measures.
If you’re dealing with a flood in your home, you may have to replace your carpet or flooring altogether. However, in some cases where the flooding isn’t as bad, you may be able to keep your flooring with heavy-duty cleaning.
• Use high-pressure steam cleaning to clean carpets
• A wet vacuum can suck up water from hard surfaces
• Sanitize after removing water
• Make sure you thoroughly dry the area after you clean
Books and Documents
In a flood, you’ll be concerned about important documents and books. Restoration professionals have state-of-the-art measures to not only clean these items but make them look as close to new as possible. The technician will use methods such as vacuum freeze-drying and gamma irradiation to remove water. It’s also vital that the technician dries these items thoroughly. A professional can work with items such as photographs, x-rays, paper and parchment.
Porous vs. Non-Porous
Part of content cleaning includes assessing what you can save and what you must part with. Unfortunately, not even the best methods can save everything all of the time, especially if the flooding introduced black water into your home. It’s more difficult to clean and save porous items such as wood than it is to handle non-porous materials such as glass.
When you need an expert solution to your content cleaning needs after water damages parts of your home and belongings, make sure you find a company that can use these effective measures. You can rest easy knowing not everything will be a lost cause after a flood.
Tips for Making a Fire Claim
File your insurance claim without delay.
How to File A Fire Claim
In the unfortunate event of a house fire in Sumner, OK feelings of not knowing where to begin the fire restoration process would be natural. Once you are certain that everyone is safe, there are steps to take to organize your response. After the fire trucks leave, it is important to seek professional help to assess the damage and secure the structure instead of trying to do this on your own.
Simplifying the Insurance Process
Home fire expenses can mount up quickly, and that is where your insurer steps in. To achieve the maximum benefit of your fire insurance policy, there are a few important tips to keep in mind.
- Call your insurance company to ask for an advance against your claim if you find that you have immediate expenses to cover out of pocket. This will be deducted from your overall claim once it is settled.
- Obtain a copy of the police report.
- Make a detailed list of losses, and don’t discard anything until after the adjuster’s visit. Documenting damage and losses is essential to a fair settlement.
- File your insurance claim without delay.
- Track all expenses related to fire restoration, and keep all receipts.
- Collect accurate and appropriate repair estimates in writing.
- Do not feel compelled to settle unless you are satisfied with the insurance company’s response. It is likely to be a negotiation.
Recovering From a Fire
Replacement, repair and restoration are all part of the process of rebounding from a house fire. However, feeling overwhelmed by all that needs to be done does not have to be inevitable. A methodical approach will go a long way in making the process run smoothly. Documenting all expenses and keeping the lines of communication open with your insurer will help keep things moving in the right direction. Fire restoration is not complete until you are resettled in your home with all remediation, including smoke cleaning, finished to your satisfaction.
Fighting Mold in the Lunchroom Fridge
Mold growth on the refrigerator.
Fighting Mold in the Lunchroom Fridge
Company lunchrooms often have a fridge full of containers of unknown casseroles, vegetables, and desserts. These same refrigerators are often receptacles for leftover lunches of Chinese food, overlooked yogurt cartons, and curdled cream for coffee. The problem with forgotten food in the communal icebox is that fridge mold can develop. Sadly, with fungus growing inside the fridge, a yeasty, mold smell can also develop and spread into the breakroom. The following steps can help you remove the mold once it appears in the lunchroom refrigerator.
1. Empty the fridge. Toss all the containers, bags, and boxes of food into the garbage because they are probably contaminated with mold spores. If there is more than one fridge in the office, transfer frozen and perishable food items until cleanup is complete.
2. Make or purchase a mold remover. If you are making the cleaning solution, try mixing two cups of warm water and one cup of white vinegar. Mix ingredients in a spray bottle. Warning: Do not use bleach because it is too abrasive on the inside walls of the refrigerator.
3. Scrub inside the icebox and remove the fridge mold. After donning a safety mask, spray the inside walls and shelves of the refrigerator. Spray any mold colonies liberally. Remove the mold and cleaning spray with a wet cloth or sponge. If mold is severe, contact a mold removal team in Navina, OK, to eliminate the fungus.
4. Reapply the cleaning solution to the inside of the fridge. Although it may appear the mold is gone, spores can easily hide in plain sight. By cleaning all surfaces a second time, you can be sure to remove the spores and the mold smell as you continue disinfecting the fridge.
Once you remove the fridge mold, it should be safe to return new food to the unit. However, to make sure the mold doesn’t return, check for food that needs to be discarded on a weekly basis. By rotating the food inside the refrigerator, you can make sure your lunchroom is mold-free.
Checklist for Cleaning Belongings After Water Damage
The cleanup process after water damage in Ceres, OK.
When your commercial building in Ceres, OK gets filled with water during a bad storm, you have to take on a lot of projects. Not only will you have to fix the structural damage done to your property, but you will also have to undergo some content cleaning. Working alongside a commercial restoration professional can make this cleanup process easier. Keep this checklist in mind as you and your crew start cleaning up after standing water.
1. Remove items from the building. While you may want to save some of your furnishings, everything needs to be taken out after a flood. You can clean and dry your belongings outside of the building to make the structural repairs easier to do. Take everything out of the building, including flooring, furniture and electronics.
2. Sort your belongings. The cleanup process is not going to be the same for every piece of furniture you own. Porous materials, such as furniture, carpets and upholstered items, may need more attention than non-porous items, such as stainless steel, tile and desks. You should also create a separate pile for electronic items.
3. Start cleaning. Once your items have been properly sorted, you can start the content cleaning process. This may mean using a washing machine, a strong cleansing solution or dry cleaning. Your goal should be to remove all dirt and debris from a material.
4. Consider throwing belongings away. If you cannot thoroughly clean a waterlogged item, you may have to throw it away rather than save it. Anything that has been sitting in floodwaters for more than 48 hours may be too far gone to salvage.
5. Dry out materials. Once your items are completely disinfected after sitting in black water, you can start to dry them out. Everything should be dry before you put it back inside your building.
There are a lot of steps you have to take when content cleaning. Remember, some items may be too damaged for you or your professionals to save.
Do You Know What To Do If a Fire Happens In Your Home?
Fire damage in Navina, OK.
What To Do If There Is A Fire At Your Home?
While you’ll hopefully never need to deal with fire restoration, it’s wise to be prepared for any scenario. This is especially true if you own an older home or use a fireplace or space heater for warmth. It’s easy to become flustered and confused after you experience fire damage in your home, but here are three important things you should do in the hours and days after any fire event.
1. Have Emergency Contacts On Hand
It’s wise to always have emergency contacts in Navina, OK, on hand so you don’t have to look them up when you’re experiencing a fire or other emergency. Keep a list of emergency contacts on your refrigerator and in your phone’s contacts list. You might also want to memorize your local fire department and police department phone numbers so you can call them immediately when needed.
2. Call Your Insurance Company
Call your home insurance company immediately after the fire. Let them know what happened and schedule a time to speak with your insurance representative about your fire insurance coverage. Make sure you understand what steps you need to take to confirm your insurance policy covers the damage.
3. Call Restoration Experts
Smoke cleaning and fire restoration are not for the faint of heart. The best thing to do is call fire restoration professionals and have them inspect the damage. After performing a thorough evaluation, they’ll be able to develop a detailed plan of action for your home. Depending on the damage, they may offer board-up, water removal, smoke cleaning, sanitizing and restoration services.
There’s no need to become overwhelmed by smoke and fire damage in your home. Fire restoration professionals are highly experienced in restoring damage due to smoke and fires and will do everything they can to return your home to like-new condition.
Inspection and Maintenance of Bathroom Supply Lines
Supply line damage takes time and money to repair.
Supply line damage can lead to many disasters. If leaking, the pressurized tube can release a lot of water, which can ultimately lead to serious water damage. To avoid the time and expense of restoration and repair, here are a few tips concerning supply lines.
What Is a Supply Line?
A supply line is a tube that connects to a faucet, toilet, dishwasher, sink, and other fixtures. It transfers water from the pipe into the fixture. These lines are normally made from plastic or stainless steel tubing. This tubing is flexible and is often braided to increase the strength and durability of the line.
How Does It Get Damaged?
Supply line damage isn’t rare. A few ways that they can get damaged include the following:
- High amounts of pressure. This pressure can escape through weak joints
- Sediment build-up. This can block the water and cause the tube to bulge and burst.
- Corrosion can cause leaks that can easily expand.
Unlike a subtle bathroom leak that happens under the floor or within a wall, a supply line leak is easy to spot. If you find one in your bathroom, quickly shut off the water supply. This will prevent any more water from escaping the line and entering parts of your home that normally don’t get water.
When Should I Inspect my Supply Lines?
All pipes and plumbing should be inspected yearly in Perry, OK, to ensure the integrity of your home’s water pipe system. However, supply lines should be checked often. Check for drips, bulges, and any corrosion that you might notice. It’s also important to test the shut-off valves to see if they are working properly.
Supply line damage takes time and money to repair. Daily use of sinks, toilets and other fixtures makes it even easier for leaks and bursts to occur. However, by taking care of your supply lines and inspecting them yearly, you can stop water damage from happening.
How To Prepare Your Building For a Storm
Keep computer files backed up on an external hard drive or cloud in case of fire damage.
Storm Preparation Tips
If a storm is approaching in Stillwater, OK, you may be worried about your commercial building and preparing for damages from the storm. Although many are prepared for storm damage like flood water in their homes, it's also important for building owners to ensure that their building can withstand a storm. Whether you're just looking to gain some extra knowledge or are preparing a storm emergency plan, these storm preparation tips can help you stay safe in the event of a storm.
Take Time To Assess Your Property
It's important to inspect your building prior to a storm approaching to ensure that it can withstand high winds, hail or other damaging weather. During your assessment, you can make sure that:
- All shutters are on windows in case of high wind
- Any furniture that could be impacted by flood water is removed
- Large branches or trees that could potentially fall on your building during a storm are removed
- Your building has had a recent roof inspection and no repairs or upgrades need to be made
You may want to take note of the strengths and weaknesses of your building, and address any weaknesses that could potentially damage your building. For example,
Put Documents in a Safe Place
All buildings have some types of important documents that need to be kept safe and dry, such as legal documents, building inspections, financial documents and tax information. A flooded building can destroy documents in just a few seconds, so it's important to locate these documents and move them to a safe, dry space. If important information is kept digitally, back up an external hard drive and keep it off-site or to an upper level in case of flood water damage.
Although these storm preparation tips can help prepare your building for a flood, hurricane or storm, your building may still need repairs after a big storm. After a storm, call in a storm damage company to help you with the restoration process.
3 Steps To Find Out if You Have Mold
Moisture leads to mold growth.
How To Tell If There's Mold In My House
While mold spores may be everywhere, most homeowners never want to have to run a mold test. The good news is that you can take steps to identify this fungus and have it removed before it becomes a problem.
1. Know What Mold Looks Like
Any indoor environmental specialist will tell you that mold is everywhere. That's because this tiny fungus gives off spores that float throughout the air. The problem is that these spores can grow anywhere they land and find moisture. That means any damp place in your home in Sumner, OK, is a potential home.
The good news is that you don't need to be a mold remediation professional to spot growth early. The easiest way to tell if you have mold is to know that it often starts as small black dots. You can easily identify it in your shower's grout lines, on damp walls, and outside on wood surfaces.
2. Look for Leaks
If you notice mold on an exterior wall, it isn't time to call an indoor environmental specialist yet. Instead, you need to check for an exterior leak in your house. Inspect the surrounding vents, flashing, doors, and windows. If you notice mold on interior surfaces, check the surrounding area for interior leaks. Any leaks are just going to lead to future mold problems. Therefore, you are going to need to fix these before you can truly fix the mold.
3. Know How To Remove Mold
While hiring an indoor environmental specialist is often the recommended strategy, some people prefer DIYing mold removal. If this is the case, you need to protect yourself and the rest of your home by wearing old clothes, using PPE, ventilating the area, disposing of porous materials, moistening very moldy areas before removal, turning off the HVAC unit, and keeping a shop vac handy.
Mold growth is not something a homeowner wants in their house. Therefore, you need to be ready to identify growth, remedy the source, and remove it to protect your home.
Who Pays After an Apartment Fire?
Apartment fire in Guthrie, OK.
Who Is Responsible In The Event Of An Apartment Fire
When you are a landlord or property owner, an apartment fire can be confusing. The last thing that you want to worry about is who pays for the damage. Fortunately, most state and federal responsibility laws are pretty clear.
Landlord / Property Owner's Responsibility
The landlord or property owner is responsible for the structure and the systems such as:
- Air conditioning
These systems are part of the overall building and usually inaccessible to tenants. For the most part, as an owner or landlord, you are not personally responsible. Your insurance company will pay for the damage.
This ultimately depends on what your policy says. In many cases, this insurance policy will include things like hiring a remediation company in Guthrie, OK, as well as any other fire damage repair costs.
This assumes that the damage is due to a fault with the building, fire hazard, or inclement weather. You, as a landlord, are not responsible for the tenant's personal property or belongings damaged in the fire.
Your tenants also have responsibilities after a fire. Tenants are responsible for their possessions and personal property in the event of an apartment fire due to a problem with the structure or a natural cause like lightning. This is why you should always require your tenants to have renters insurance. In the majority of cases, the insurance will pick up where the property insurance leaves off.
Of course, there are some exceptions. If the tenant or one of their guests starts the fire, then they will be held responsible. Fortunately, insurance companies often straighten this out for you.
If your tenant does not have insurance, things might get a bit tricky. It is always a good idea to include fire insurance or renter's insurance as a requirement in your lease. This way, it is clear who is responsible for paying for damages when the fire is your tenant's fault.
As a landlord or property owner, you should know who is responsible in the event of an apartment fire. Knowing your responsibility is a key factor in making your recovery go smoothly.