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What To Expect for Your Home After a Flood

12/5/2019 (Permalink)

Hallway with wet carpet Damaged carpet in Las Vegas,NV

Ways Materials Around Your Home May React to Water

After a flood in Las Vegas, NV, your home may experience a number of phenomena including swelling wood. Understanding that this is a normal reaction to flood water may help you feel a little more certain about making flood repairs. Here are a few ways the materials around your home may react to water.

1. Carpeting

After flooding it’s important to contact a water damage restoration service to conduct any cleaning needs and possibly help with a water pipe repair. This is especially important if the flood water has damaged any cloth items such as carpeting which can bee affected a number of ways depending on the flood water type. In that case of sewer damage it will need to be replaced. White or grey water flooding may leave carpeting soggy but in many cases it can be dried and salvaged.

2. Wood

Wood materials can react in several ways depending on the wood’s type. Swelling wood, may be seen with soft woods, wood composites, or older woods. Hardwood in many cases, can be washed off, dried, and salvaged. Wood that has swollen, such as composite cupboards or a ply-board sub-floor, will need to be replaced.

3. Composites

A composite material is comprised of multiple substances that are different from each other, but when combined makes something that can be used in a new way. Flooding from a broken supply line or other source can affect these differently depending on the materials used. Composite woods may swell or crumble when left to soak for long periods of time, while metal, rubber or plastic composites will simply need to be washed off.
Contacting a restoration expert for flood repairs is highly recommended. These experts can help you understand what flood damage you can expect to see in your home. Swelling wood, soggy carpeting and eroding composite materials are all to be expected after a flood affects your home.

What Are the Risks of Flooding After a Fire?

12/2/2019 (Permalink)

Firefighters at a house fire Water damage from fire suppression in Northwest Las Vegas,NV

Fire and flooding damage may seem like unrelated issues, but flooding or water damage can follow a fire and intensify primary damage. Find out more about flood risks posed by different types of fires and how the Federal Emergency Management Agency's National Flood Insurance Program, also known as FEMA NFIP, can help with wildfire damage.

Water Damage From Fire Suppression

Regardless of the cause of a fire, fire suppression methods are likely to result in water damage.

  • Fire hoses dispense anywhere from 300 to 800 gallons of water per minute.
  • Firefighting efforts can grind in ash and soot.
  • A structure with fire damage may become flooded.

Damage resulting from fire suppression should be covered by homeowner's insurance. Document the damage before taking mitigation measures.

Flooding Resulting From Wildfires

The risk of flash flooding and mudflows can be elevated for up to five years after a wildfire.

  • Wildfires char the ground, limiting the ability of soil to absorb rainfall.
  • Fires eliminate vegetation that anchors soil.
  • Unabsorbent ground increases runoff.

Most homeowner's insurance policies exclude flooding damage. Homeowners in affected areas should obtain FEMA NFIP coverage.

Combined Fire and Water Damage

Standing water from flooding or fire suppression efforts worsens fire damage. Mitigation may involve:

  • Eliminating water with a pump or wet vac.
  • Preventing ash and soot from getting ground into hard flooring.
  • Tearing out and replacing porous materials, such as carpet.

Depending on the source of the flood water, specialized cleaning methods may be used to eliminate signs of fire and water damage from certain contents or surfaces. Cleanup specialists will recommend the right restoration measures.

Rely on fire, flood, and water damage mitigation experts to restore a residence following fire suppression efforts or wildfire-related flooding in Northwest Las Vegas, NV. Residents should document damage and file a claim with the FEMA NFIP or homeowner's insurance providers to offset cleanup and restoration expenses.

Does Renter's Insurance Cover Fire Damage?

11/26/2019 (Permalink)

Renters insurance By working with your insurance agent and other professionals, you can help ensure a smooth process.

If your residence in Northwest Las Vegas experiences damage from a fire, renters insurance may help protect lost or damaged items. Working closely with your insurance company can help you to understand what types of losses are covered. By cooperating with emergency personnel, landlords, other residents, and your insurance agent, you can help ensure a smooth and speedy restoration process. Having a general idea of what to expect can help set your mind at ease when talking to other parties.

What Is Covered?

Most renters insurance policies cover losses from fire damage. Your policy probably covers personal items or belongings that you brought into the residence. There are several easy ways to tell if the item is likely to be covered by your insurance:

It is not part of the structural building
It is something you brought in, like furniture or jewelry
It is something you own and will take with you when you move
It was not already there when you moved in

Some experts recommend taking pictures of your possessions when you move into a new residence. In the unlikely event that you need to file a claim, this will help prove ownership and what condition things were in before the disaster.

What About the Building?

At this point, you may be concerned that while your couch and clothes are covered, the carpet reeks of smoke and the electrical sockets are not working properly. This is where your landlord's insurance comes in. They are usually responsible to cover anything that is part of the structure of the building or permanent fixtures. They may choose to bring in a professional fire restoration company that can fix or replace items and return the residence to its pre-fire condition.

Renters insurance is necessary to cover personal losses that your landlord is not usually responsible for.

Mold Prevention During Flood Cleanup

11/12/2019 (Permalink)

Entrance of a house fully flooded during flooding Flooded home in Northwest Las Vegas, NV

Mold Prevention During Flood Cleanup

Once the water subsides after flooding, your home in Northwest Las Vegas, NV, still has a long way to go before it is back to normal. The most common issue people face is mold growth. Flooding creates the perfect conditions for spores to spread, which can happen within 24 hours.

The Effects of Flood Waters

Even just a little water has the potential for mold to start forming, so a flooded home will likely face more issues. As opposed to a roof leak, which usually affects one area, flooding can affect nearly every area of the home. Addressing saturated areas as quickly as possible is key.

Furniture, wood, clothing and other porous materials attract mold spores. Remove those items from the home. Keep salvageable items away from those that were completely submerged and will likely need to be discarded.
Inspect carpeting, drywall and baseboards for damage. Knocking a few holes in those area to allow for air flow can reduce the chances of mold growth.
Dry out carpeting. Use a wet vac to remove the waters. Be sure to wear safety gear to avoid coming into contact with contaminated water.
Open windows and use a dehumidifier and fans to help dry out the home.
Any glass, plastic or metal objects touched by the water should be clean and disinfected.

What If There Is Already Mold?

Even if you get your home dried out as quickly as possible, mold could already be growing. When it comes to mold removal, it’s best to contact a mold remediation expert to completely and safely eliminate it. Even if you think you got everything cleaned up, mold has a sneaky way of growing where it can’t be seen. If you begin to smell a musty odor that won’t go away, there is a good chance your home needs extra help.
Although mold growth can seem like a big problem, getting the right help makes a difference. Count on a professional to get your flooded home back to “Like it never even happened.”

Keeping Your Microwave Clean and Odor Free

10/22/2019 (Permalink)

Closeup of hand in protective glove wiping rag microwave. View from the interior of the oven Keep your microwave clean

Here Are Three Tips For Getting Rid Of The Stench and Disinfecting the Unit

You've popped that bag of popcorn too long and now a pungent smoke smell has permeated the house. What do you do? After all, you don't want your next few meals to pick up that burnt scent. It's time to clean the appliance, getting into the nooks and crannies. Here are three tips for getting rid of the stench and disinfecting the unit.

1) Tackle Odor First

To do this, locate a microwavable container, and fill it with water. Then, add a small amount of vinegar or lemon juice. Place it in the microwave, heating the water to boiling. This should help remove the funky scent.

2) Wipe It Down

The steam from the water should loosen any food stuck to the walls, offering an easier clean up. Grab a sponge or a wet cloth, and start scrubbing. Food that lingers on the walls can reduce the microwave's functionality and create a smoke smell. To avoid this, wash it often and cover plates when they're heated.

3) Eliminate Leftover Grease

Under the appliance is a grease filter that should be rinsed once a month. You'll want to take it out and place it in a bucket of water and detergent. Be careful. You don't want to use ammonia, so read labels first. After a while, remove it, dry it off, and put it back. Once this is done, locate the vent grill about the unit. Take off the front panel. Look and see how the grease has accumulated. With your rag, wipe it down. Grease is a potential fire hazard; thus, allowing it to sit could leave your home open to a fire. If flames or smoke occur, call 911 immediately. Allow the firemen to put it out. Then, contact a fire restoration company in Las Vegas, NV, to evaluate and repair the damage.
If the smoke smell bothers you, make it a habit to sanitize the appliance. Scour it free of food debris, and scrub it with soap and water.

Minimizing Water Damage in the Kitchen

10/22/2019 (Permalink)

Close-up Of A Man's Hand Holding Blue Napkin Under Leakage Pipe Water damage in a NW Las Vegas,NV kitchen

The kitchen is the heart of the home. Happy memories are made around the kitchen table and comfort and celebration are freely dispensed with a hug and a plate of brownies. But there is little comfort when a nasty leak is discovered under the kitchen sink. Such leaks can cause flooding under the cabinet or even into the ceiling below.

Minimizing Water Damage

Do not underestimate the role of water in home damage – the effects are unpleasant and all too real. The inconvenience, expense and household disruption are difficult to deal with, but there are some ways that may minimize the damage.

Inspect to determine the source of the leak and shut off the water supply at the first sign of water
Remove furnishings, area rugs and other moveable items to a dry location if possible – do not allow them to sit and soak up water
Do not turn on any appliances or entertainment equipment that has been exposed to the water, and never plug something in while you are standing in water or a wet surface
Alert your homeowner’s insurance to get direction and then call for professional assistance

Getting Proper Help

That last point is particularly important and should be undertaken as soon as the water source is shut off. A water remediation and restoration service in Northwest Las Vegas, NV, can assess the damage, alert you as to how to stay safe, and begin water extraction. If the water in home flooding is from a clean source, extraction and thorough cleaning and drying may be all that is necessary. If it comes from the disposal, contains food particles and grease; especially if it has been an ongoing problem that has gone unnoticed or untreated, then more intense sanitation measures may need to be employed.
The remediation service can undertake any kitchen repair that is necessary due to the flooding. Your kitchen can soon be restored to a place where comfort and caring can be found.

How To Keep Your Employees Safe During a Thunderstorm

10/22/2019 (Permalink)

Lightning storm over city in purple light Thunderstorm in Las Vegas,NV

How To Keep Your Employees Safe During a Thunderstorm

Regular storms typically do not cause much damage. A major rain storm in Las Vegas, NV, however, can put your employees at risk.
Severe thunderstorms are particularly dangerous. They include wind gusts of at least 58 miles per hour or hail that is at least one inch in diameter. These storms can cause destruction in several ways:

  • High winds can knock down power lines and trees, damaging buildings and causing power outages
  • Heavy rains often lead to flood damage
  • Lightning strikes kill more people each year than hurricanes or tornadoes

You should thus take steps to protect your employees before, during and after a thunderstorm. Below are some tips for keeping everyone safe.

Before the Storm

Pay attention to local weather forecasts so you know if a severe rain storm is coming. Before the rain arrives, talk to your employees about what they should expect. Also, bring any outdoor equipment inside and trim any long or damaged tree branches near your building.
If your office has a lightning rod, make sure it is properly installed and maintained. To prevent severe storm damage, close all the office windows and doors as well.

During the Storm

When the storm begins, tell all your employees to stay inside and to keep away from the windows and skylights. Avoid using any electronic devices or plumbing.

After the Storm

Once the rain has stopped, begin the storm cleanup process. If your business sustained major damage, you can contact your local emergency restoration services company for assistance.
In the meantime, keep employees away from any electronic devices in the building until the flood cleanup is complete. Make sure they know to avoid any power lines that have fallen outside the office.
A severe rain storm can be dangerous if you do not take the proper precautions. If you follow the above steps, you can make sure your employees remain out of harm's way.

Mitigating Category 3 Damage

9/30/2019 (Permalink)

Technician using wet/dry vacuum for water extraction on a wet floor Extracting water in Northwest Las Vegas, NV

Mitigating Category 3 Damage

Water damage in your commercial building in Northwest Las Vegas, NV, may or may not be contaminated, depending on the water source. Category 3 damage comes from flood water or sewage, which means it may contain harmful bacteria and microbes. When you have this kind of damage, the water mitigation process must contain a step for disinfecting any remaining surface the contaminated water touches. There are a few steps that lead up to cleaning, though.

1. Water Extraction

After flooding, all excess water must be removed from the area. Water mitigation experts can do this efficiently using industrial pumps. Extraction starts the drying out process, which slows down the progression of the damage.

2. Material Removal

Extensive flooding from a toilet overflow often means that the flooring or walls need to be torn out. If they have been saturated, they cannot be cleaned and must be replaced. Before disinfection can take place, technicians must remove all materials that have been destroyed by the flooding.

3. Extensive Cleaning

Because sewage and flood water are highly contaminated, anything they touch much be thoroughly disinfected before the area can be restored. Experts may use industrial-strength cleaners, gamma radiation or other methods to make sure that all germs are gone.

4. Structure Restoration

The last step that occurs before your building can return to business as usual is restoration. Parts of the structure that were torn out are rebuilt and replaced. Items that had to be removed from the area are returned if they were able to be salvaged. Finishing steps such as paint touch-ups or tile matching are completed.
When flood water or an overflowing toilet cause extensive water damage to your building, restoration experts must do more than just dry out the area. By disinfecting the affected space before rebuilding it, they can help you safeguard the people in your building and avoid additional damage.

What Damages a Solar Panel?

9/18/2019 (Permalink)

A solar panel on top of a roof house Solar panels are designed to last up to 30 years

What Damages a Solar Panel?

People in Las Vegas, NV with solar panels should feel confident that their investment should last and they won’t have to worry about panel damage. While the weather doesn’t always cooperate with our wishes, these renewable energy systems are designed to withstand a fair amount of what Mother Nature throws their way.

Panel Durability

Although the many photovoltaic cells that make up a panel are fragile, they are protected by a durable frame and tempered glass. Similar to cellphone screens, even if they shatter or crack, they maintain their form. The glass used is tested to provided a protective layer from hail, wind and sever storms, as well as hold up to excess weight on them.

Common Culprits

Solar panels are designed to last up to 30 years, and may even continue working at a lower capacity after that, but they aren’t 100% resistant to the effects of nature. When general roof damage occurs, there may be a chance that there is also panel damage. The most common causes of damage include:

Falling debris – Dust, leaves and twigs may create tiny scratches that can eventually block some of the cells from absorbing sunlight. Larger branches falling have the potential to create large cracks. Maintaining nearby trees can help deter these problems.
Hail – Panels are designed to withstand hail. For people who live in areas prone to hail storms, or freak storms with larger hail, scratching or cracking can happen. While there isn’t much you can do to prevent hail damage, smaller panels can reduce overall damage.
Rain and snow – As panels age, seals can begin to deteriorate. This may allow moisture to get inside the panel and affect its components. A professional can reseal the panels to help them last as long as they should.

Most people won’t need to worry about panel damage for years to come. A few small steps, like keeping panels free of debris, can easily be added to your spring and fall home maintenance checklist.

Proper Mold Testing For Your Home

9/18/2019 (Permalink)

The hand of someone with a moist meter on wall, testing for mold Mold testing in a home

Proper Mold Testing For Your Home

Homeowners are often concerned about indoor humidity levels and the possibility of mold growth. There are dozens of products advertised for mold testing, but how do you know if they are accurate or whether they can truly tell your risk level? The following items will dispel myths about DIY mold kits and explain the best path forward for a safe home.

Mold Kit Truths

Mold is present everywhere, both indoors and out. It is brought indoors through air ventilation systems, open windows and doors, and even through your clothes and pets. Therefore, every mold testing kit should read positive when trying to determine the presence of mold. The results aren’t useful, because they don’t tell you if the amount of mold is harmful or in need of a mold remediation specialist.

Professional Fixes

The only way to determine whether you have a problem is to hire a competent environmental hygienist to test for mold levels. They should be able to give you clear results, along with a plan of action, if needed. Before choosing a company, ask the following questions:

  • Is the company well-established and experienced in mold testing?
  • Does it also offer remediation services to get rid of health risks?
  • Are the technicians properly trained?
  • Does it have the technology to eliminate mold?

Prevention Methods

If you are determined to take action yourself, there are several steps you can take to prevent mold growth. Regularly getting your roof and plumbing inspected can help identify problems before water damage occurs. Certain rooms like bathrooms and basements are magnets for humidity problems, so addressing excess moisture is important. You should ensure proper ventilation and implement dehumidifiers, if necessary.
It can be tempting to buy a cheap DIY mold kit to try to handle a potential humidity and mold problem within your home. However, the results are often not useful. If you are concerned about mold testing, contact a competent professional to determine the risks and prevention methods.