Recent Posts

Showering Makes the Toilet Overflow

8/20/2019 (Permalink)

Auger snake

Clearly, showering should not affect the other plumbing in the bathroom. If taking a shower makes your toilet overflow, you have a clog somewhere between the toilet and the sewer. Proper sewage cleaning is in order. This can be a DIY project, if you are feeling adventurous.

Steps to Clearing the Pipes

1. Get a snake. An auger snake is a plumbing tool that consists of a long, flexible wire that is driven either by hand or by a motor. You can rent or purchase snakes from your local hardware store in Northwest Las Vegas, NV. You'll need a snake that's at least 25 feet long.
2. Snake the toilet. Since you're not sure where the clogged pipe is, begin by snaking the toilet. You can do this through the toilet itself, or remove the toilet and snake through the floor drain. When you are done, run the shower to see if it is still overflowing.
3. Snake the drain cleanout. The drain cleanout is a cap on your main drain, probably located in the crawlspace or basement. Use a long pipe wrench to remove the cap. Be aware that if you have clogged pipes at this point, backed up sewage can run out when you remove the cap. Run the snake through the opening to clear up any clogs. Replace the cap and run your shower again to test.
4. Get help. If your attempts at sewage cleaning have not solved the problem, you have bigger issues and you will need to call a professional plumber. They have longer and more powerful snakes that can reach clogs between your home and the main sewer line.

In addition to sewage cleaning, you may need home cleaning or water damage restoration. If your plumbing problems have resulted in damage to floors, walls, or fixtures, call in the pros who are Faster to any size disaster.

3 Steps To Take Before a Storm Hits Your Business

8/13/2019 (Permalink)

Back up all of your files on a cloud

How To Equip Your Business For a Storm

If a spring storm is in the forecast, you need to prepare your business for the bad weather. Ensuring that you take the proper steps in advance can prevent your building from becoming vulnerable to storm damage. If you fail to prepare, it can result in unnecessary expenses and high stress levels. Follow these guidelines to equip your business in Las Vegas, NV, for a storm.

1. Secure Your Building

Before the storm hits, the first thing you should do is make sure each aspect of your building is properly secured. Check to see that:

  • Windows are protected by shutters or plywood.
  • Trees and shrubs near structures are trimmed.
  • The building has no current leaks.

Protecting your windows with shutters or plywood can prevent them from shattering as a result of high winds. It’s also important to check for any existing leaks throughout your building, as they can worsen when the storm hits. You don’t want to pay for repairs or replacements as a result of a pipe burst or another form of damage.

2. Pay Attention to Weather Reports

It will be a challenge to fully prepare your business for a spring storm if you aren’t aware of what kind of damage you can expect. To stay updated before the bad weather arrives, pay close attention to any weather reports that provide helpful information on the storm. The more you know about the weather event, the better equipped you can be when it comes to your area.

3. Protect Your Data

Your business’s data is extremely valuable and must be protected in the event of a storm. Make sure you have a plan in place that will keep your data safe if the weather threatens to compromise it. It may be a good idea to back up all of your files on a cloud so that you can access them at a more convenient time.
The safety of your business should be taken seriously. If a spring storm causes any harm to your property, trust an emergency damage restoration company to bring your business back to its normal state.

Dealing With Fire and Water Damage Does Not Mean the End of Business

8/6/2019 (Permalink)

Fire and water damage in Northwest Las Vegas, NV

The majority of business owners in Northwest Las Vegas, NV, go through their days without the fear of a fire being foremost in their thoughts. With reasonable maintenance and care, most people may never experience the tragedy of fire breaking out in the workplace. But for the few who do see such an unfortunate event occur, the fire damage can be devastating.

Damage Comes From Both Fire and Water

In addition to the heat and flames, water damage is another aspect that must be dealt with. A fire hose pumps thousands of gallons of water in the course of putting out a fire. All of that water can be just as destructive as the flames themselves. Fire damage tends to burn upward, while water runs downward inside available openings.

How Does Water Cause Damage During a Fire?

Water can swell boards, ruin electronics and compromise electrical systems even if the flames never touched them.Water can also cause extensive structural damage to porous materials like sheet rock, wood floors and carpeting. Sodden building materials can become swollen or buckled, potentially leading to floor or ceiling cave-ins. Left too long, excess moisture in building interiors can also lead to issues with mold and mildew.

How To Deal With Damage?

The damage from both water and fire can seem insurmountable, but there is help available. A fire and water damage restoration service in Northwest Las Vegas, NV, can guide you through the process by helping to:

  • Assess and evaluate the damage
  • Provide estimates and other details to file with your insurance company
  • Begin safe cleanup practices, including removal of items and structural materials damaged beyond repair, as well as dealing with smoke damage and mold growth
  • Properly clean and disinfect savable content, storing for later as needed
  • Perform restoration services of damaged areas

There is much to do after a fire and time is of the essence. Don’t let fire damage throw you off course. With professional help, you can see the restoration unfold in front of you and get back to business as usual.

What To Do When Mold Comes Back

7/30/2019 (Permalink)

Mold in structure

Reasons Why Mold Comes Back

You see a few patches of mold growth on the wall of your office, so you have the custodial staff clean it up. In a few days, you notice that the patches have returned in the same spot. It's not the custodians' fault. There are several reasons that the mold may have returned.

Moisture Problems

Mold will not grow in your building in Las Vegas, NV, unless there is enough moisture to feed it. A moisture problem can come from several issues:

  • High humidity
  • Leaky pipe
  • Unresolved water damage
  • Damp carpet or carpet pad

Even if you clean the patch of mold off the wall, if you don't resolve the moisture problem that led to it, it will probably come back.

Mold Structure

The purpose of mold in nature is to break down organic matter. When mold spores settle on a surface, that's exactly what they start doing. There is more to mold growth than what you see on the surface. Tendrils called hyphae grow down into the pores of the material. They excrete enzymes that start to break down the material of your wall or whatever surface hosts the growth. When you just clean the surface, you're only removing half the problem. You are probably also releasing spores, which can affect the air quality in your office.

Improper Mitigation

Only licensed mold mitigation specialists have the necessary training for thorough remediation. They will likely start with a pretest so that they can identify the full scope of the problem. Then they use special techniques that allow disinfectant to reach all the places that the fungus has spread. After mitigation, they can test again to make sure the issue is resolved.
Unless you hire experts to get rid of not only the mold growth but the moisture problem that allowed it to thrive, you will probably see it again, maybe even in the same spot. Understanding the nature of mold can help you recognize the right way to handle the problem.

Flood Insurance Is a Must For Businesses

7/26/2019 (Permalink)

Give SERVPRO a call if you experience commercial flooding.

Coping with the aftermath of a flood in Las Vegas, NV, is likely to be challenging to citizens and business owners. Surprisingly, many business owners may not realize the importance of carrying flood insurance because they assume they are covered under their commercial insurance policies. Naturally occurring hazards such as fire, lightning and wind that produce damage are covered under these policies, as are rainwater, mudflow and melting snow that leaks onto property from above, but commercial coverage does not typically extend to flood damage. Areas that experience snowy winters with rapid spring melts, heavy spring rains or even moderate annual rainfall are at particular risk for the kind of flooding that can damage floors, walls, fixtures, and inventory and cripple a business temporarily or permanently. 

Defining Flood Damage

To understand floods, you must know what makes a flood different from a rainstorm.

  1. Flood water is defined as accumulating from the ground up, as in the overflow from bodies of water, storm surges, blocked storm drains, and rain or snow melt that inundates ground that is ordinarily dry.
  2. Floods cover at least two properties or an area determined to be at least two acres.
  3. Flood damage is confined to buildings in which water and/or mudflow has infiltrated from the ground.

Understanding Flood Insurance

Insurance policies for floods protect business owners against losses to their buildings and what is stored in them. Exemptions include vehicles, loss of use and loss of revenue from having to close the business for any amount of time. If the business is operating with a mortgage from a federally insured or federally regulated lender, carrying flood insurance on the building is required by law. The same is true if the business is operating in an area that has been officially designated as an area at high risk for flooding. Easy-to-use, interactive tools available online enable business owners to determine the status of Las Vegas, NV with regard to flood risk.

Floods and Mold Damage: Should You Have a Flood Policy?

7/16/2019 (Permalink)

People in flood zones already understand the importance of flood insurance

Importance of Flood Insurance

People in flood zones already understand the importance of flood insurance. However, homeowners living just outside the boundary of these flooding zones may not know the value of such policies, especially with the compounding damages of flood waters, like mold growth and structural issues. Flood coverage can offer protections for homeowners even when they don't live within a specified flood territory. However, it is necessary to weigh the advantages of such policies against the potential need.

Likelihood of Flooding

Not every area is prone to flooding, so living within a relatively dry climate may mean less need for flood coverage. However, if you live close to a flood zone, then purchasing the additional coverage is a way of protecting against possible loss. Therefore, check with your local municipality and emergency management office to determine if flood protection is a good idea for you and your residence.

Storm Surge and Mold Growth

While your area may not have frequent flooding, you may still live in an area prone to violent weather, like tropical storms or hurricanes, either of which can cause flooding. When living in an area with volatile weather, the city may ask for evacuations occasionally. Unfortunately, while you may prepare your home for the approaching storm, a flood may occur, leaving your home and belongings vulnerable. Experts say that mold growth develops within hours and colonizes within three days, meaning that areas at risk of evacuation likely require more specific coverages, like for flooding.

Restoration

Another reason to consider upgrading your insurance in certain areas is to offset the cost of restorations. Flooding can cause a significant amount of property damage, and most homeowner's policies will not cover the loss. Therefore, to hire an emergency restoration service in the Las Vegas, NV, area for water and potential mold removal, you will need adequate flood coverage.
While intense storms and flooding do not affect every area in the country, it is necessary to make sure you're covered for potential weather risks in your area. Flooding can lead to mold growth and structural issues that are not commonly covered in homeowners' policies. Therefore, check your zoning and policy to protect your property.

Steps to Take After a Fire in Your Home

7/16/2019 (Permalink)

Fire damage in a Northwest Las Vegas, NV home

What to Do After a Fire?

You've probably learned about proper fire prevention tips and how to safely evacuate your home in case of such an emergency. Do you know what to do after the fire, once you've reached safety and crews have put out the flames? It's critical that you follow effective procedures so you can get your home back to a state where you can return and get your life back on track. This not only involves fire restoration but working with your insurance company.

Your Responsibilities

From the moment you smell smoke, see a fire in your Northwest Las Vegas, NV, home or hear the smoke detector sound the alarm, you need to act quickly. If you take the right actions, you can have peace of mind that you'll get the financial help you need to pay for repairs and that you'll be able to get back home soon.

  • Alert the fire department as soon as you suspect or verify there's a fire.
  • Contact professional fire restoration specialists to start the cleanup and repair efforts.
  • Call your insurance agent and file a claim with your homeowner's insurance or fire insurance policies.

Leave It Alone

It's vital that as soon as the fire crews put out the fire that you don't return to the home and disturb the scene. Not only is this unsafe, but it could cause further damage to the structure of your house and nullify some of your insurance claims.

Let the Insurance and Restoration Companies Coordinate

It's important that you file a claim quickly so your insurance agent can communicate with the fire cleanup and remediation team. The restoration company will inform the insurance agency about necessary repairs, smoke cleaning and the extent of the damage. The company can take photos and send them to your insurance agency as well.
The sooner you file a claim and hire the right fire restoration company, the sooner you'll get on the road to recovery. Make sure you act quickly and effectively.

Should You Choose Mitigation or Restoration After a Fire?

7/11/2019 (Permalink)

Insurance for fire damage may cover either mitigation or restoration

Insurance for fire damage may cover either mitigation or restoration. If your Las Vegas, NV, business has a fire policy, it is important for you to understand the difference between the two. It is also helpful for you to be aware of which service your specific policy covers.

Working With Your Insurance Company

Which option is best for you will depend on several factors, especially the following:

  • What is provided for by your policy
  • The type of company that is recommended to you by your insurer

If you hire an all-purpose, one-stop-shop restoration company, they will likely deliver both mitigation and restoration, as well as additional fire mitigation services. It therefore makes sense to consider working with the insurance company to bring such a company onboard, rather than having to go through two different service providers. If you have more freedom of choice, however, it's useful to have an understanding of the difference between mitigation and restoration.

Making Sense of Mitigation

The principal goal of a mitigation company is to prevent further harm to a piece of property that has suffered fire damage. Such a company would primarily be focused on short-term reconstruction to ensure security and prevent total structural collapse of the building. Much of what it does is limited and can be described as "short-gap" at best. It is usually after this process that an insurance adjuster might begin his or her work of assessing the extent of the damage.

Recognizing the Need for Restoration

Restoration is what comes after mitigation: full reconstruction of the property, replacement of floors and ceilings, reconnection of utilities, etc. A restoration company might also be able to help put in measures to prevent future damage. Given this description, it is obvious that restoration is most useful when done after mitigation. Basically, stop the rot first, then rebuild.

As a business owner, it is prudent to include a solid reconstruction plan in any measures you take to insure against unforeseen disasters such as fire damage. This should be a key consideration in any policy discussions, as such a provision could come in handy in the future.

Types of Water Losses in Commercial Properties

6/21/2019 (Permalink)

Broken pipe causes water damage in this Northwest Las Vegas,NV building

Water -Related Problems That Your Property Policy for Your Building Will Cover

Commercial insurance carriers get a lot of claims for issues caused by damaged pipes or floods. Water loss is one of the most common problems that occur in commercial properties. Here are a few water-related problems that your property policy for your building in Northwest Las Vegas, NV, will likely cover.

Sudden Water Leaks

Leaking pipes caused by a sudden break are typically covered by commercial insurance plans. These leaks can happen for a variety of reasons:

  • Broken supply line
  • Fire system output
  • Broken pipes
  • Leaking appliances

While the policy may not pay to fix the damaged pipe or appliance, it probably covers the cost of water remediation services that repair the damage (waterlogged walls, loose flooring, etc.) that result from the leak.

Building Repair

A property policy is designed to preserve the property itself. This can include not just the building but covered items within the building, such as office equipment and furniture. If your building sustains secondary damage, such as further saturation or a mold problem, as a direct result of a covered peril, your policy will likely cover the cost to mitigate that damage as long as you can prove that you did everything in your power to prevent it. Some appliances or flooding situations may be excluded from your policy, so it's a good idea to talk to your agent about additional coverage you may need to compensate for exclusions.

Fire System Repair

One of the most common exceptions to the exclusions in many policies is the fire system. Sometimes, even if the system operates as designed, damage still occurs. If the system is damaged by the substance used to put out a fire, your coverage is likely to pay for the repairs needed to get it back up to code.
Damaged pipes and sudden leaks can wreak havoc on your commercial property. Knowing what your insurance package covers can help you navigate the repair process better.

3 Things To Remember When Making a Water Damage Claim

6/14/2019 (Permalink)

Contact water damage restoration specialists immediately to prevent excess water

How to Correctly File an Insurance Claim

Having a water damage problem in your home can be a stressful situation. To make sure that you’re being compensated for your trouble, it’s important to understand how to correctly file an insurance claim. Here are some tips to keep in mind before you make a claim for water damage in your Las Vegas, NV, home.

1. Determine What Your Insurance Will Cover

In most cases, an insurance company will only cover certain types of water damage. This is a crucial point to consider as you work on preparing your claim. Some of the forms of damage that may not be covered by insurance include:

  • Gradual pipe leaks
  • Seepage from cracks
  • Damaged areas of roof
  • Steady toilet leaks

If you're facing a more serious problem such as a flood, your claim is more likely to be approved. It’s important to discuss your specific damage with your insurance adjuster to have a clear idea of what to expect during the claim filing process.

2. Ask Questions

If you aren’t completely sure about something when making your insurance claim, it’s better to be safe than sorry. Don’t be afraid to ask questions, whether you’re looking for information about your state’s claim filing laws or want to confirm that your pipe burst is covered by insurance. Ensuring that you have a clear understanding of your expectations can help the process go more smoothly.

3. Keep Track of Lost or Damaged Items

In order to effectively support your damage claim, you need to keep records of all of your lost or damaged items. Make a list of any articles that have been harmed or destroyed completely by the event that caused water damage. It is also a good idea to hold on to these damaged items before your insurance adjuster visits so you can provide physical proof of what you lost.

Filing an insurance claim is only one step towards having peace of mind. Contact water damage restoration specialists immediately to prevent excess water from causing further damage to your home.