Recent Posts

4 Flood Safety Tips Everyone Should Remember

3/26/2020 (Permalink)

Flooded area. Outside of a home flooded Remember that flood safety comes before anything else after a severe Temple, TX, storm.

If you are a homeowner in Temple, TX, you likely have either experienced household flooding in the past or will have to be prepared for it in the future. Clean up and restoration are important steps to take after a flood, but the security of you and your loved ones comes first. Here are four important tips for flood safety that you and your family should keep in mind year-round.

1. Listen to Authorities

This is one of the most critical safety tips. If the coast has not been cleared for you to return to your property, do not even think about attempting to do so. Trust the judgment of law enforcement and stay put; your well-being is more important than your house.

2. Wear Protection

After a flood, wild animals may go indoors to seek refuge. If you are doing any light cleanup before professional help has arrived, or you are simply trying to survey the damage, make sure to wear gloves, boots and other equipment for flood safety at all times in case dangerous wildlife are inside your home.

3. Beware of Shock

If you can safely do so, turn off your electricity before touching electrical appliances in your home. If you cannot shut off your power, do not touch these devices at all to avoid electrocution.

4. Avoid Floodwater

Floodwater can be dangerous for many reasons. If you are stuck in a building with high levels of water, your best bet for safety will be to seek the highest level of ground possible. This may mean climbing on to the roof in some cases.

Remember that flood safety comes before anything else after a severe Temple, TX, storm. If something feels unsafe to you, it probably is. Homeowners often get wrapped up in worry over their home’s safety, but buildings and objects can be replaced; your health and welfare are much more important.

3 Ways Mold Can Spread Through Your House

3/25/2020 (Permalink)

Mold spreading throughout a wall caused by water damage Mold growth caused by water damage in Belton, TX

Ways That Mold Can Travel

Mold growth is a common problem for many homeowners, and this fungus can be found in a variety of buildings. If you are noticing spreading mold in your Belton, TX, home, then there are a few different reasons why this might be occurring. The following are some ways that mold can travel.

1. Shoes, Clothing, and Pets

Black mold, as well as other varieties of the fungus, is spread via spores. These are unable to be seen with the naked eye, so you can easily carry them without knowing. You might track them into the house on your clothes or shoes. If you have pets that are allowed outside, your furry friends might be bringing them inside as well.

2. Water Damage

You might be surprised to learn that mold is likely inside your home even if there are no signs. The good news is that most mold spores will not cause you any trouble, because they need specific conditions, namely moisture, to grow. If you have had water damage, whether from a leak, broken appliance or storm, this can result in spreading mold.

3. Mold Removal

Another way that you could end up spreading mold throughout your home is by trying to remove the mold on your own. This might sound counterintuitive, but because mold spores are so easy to spread without noticing, some precautions need to be taken during cleanup. The area will need to be blocked off from the rest of the house, and air circulation should be extremely limited. Using fans or an HVAC system during mold removal can move spores into other parts of the building.
If there is mold in your house, it is best to have mold remediation done by a professional service. Because of the difficult nature of removing this growth, a cleanup and restoration company is your best bet. They can locate all instances of growth and remove it thoroughly and safely without causing further damage.

How Hail Can Damage Your Roof

3/19/2020 (Permalink)

Missing shingles on a roof Some types of damage are easy to spot, such as missing shingles

Hail can cause damage to just about anything that is exposed to the weather, however, it can be particularly damaging to the roof of your home. Roof damage from hail can lead to more severe problems if left unrepaired, so it can be helpful to know what types of damage to look for.

Types of Hail Damage

Hail damage can take many forms. There are several types of damage to look for:

  • Cracked or worn shingles
  • Exposed or fractured fiberglass mats
  • Weakened self-seal strips

Shingle Damage

Shingles have a sandpaper type layer, called granules. Hail can damage this layer, exposing the asphalt coating, which can cause your shingles to wear out faster. A forceful hail impact can crack shingles, which can expose them to the weather or leave bare patches on your roof.

Fiberglass Mat Damage

When hail strikes shingles it can expose the underlying fiberglass mat. Exposed mats can fracture or tear, which can lead to further roof damage.

Weakened Self-seal Strips

The self-seal strip is what keeps your shingles attached to your roof. When this seal is weakened, shingles can come loose and blow off your roof. Missing shingles can expose your roof to weather conditions and lead to leaks.

Assessing Hail Damage

Some types of damage are easy to spot, such as missing shingles. Other types of damage can be difficult to see without a professional roof-inspection. If your roof has been exposed to hail, you may want to contact a roof inspector in Temple, TX, to check for damage. If your roof has already begun to leak, prompt water damage remediation may mitigate the severity of your damage.
Hail can lead to a variety of types of roof damage. Because damage from hail is not always easy to spot, it can be wise to have a professional roof inspection done. Even light damage can increase the likelihood of leaks and other problems, so addressing it promptly may save you money down the road.

How to Create a Fire Escape Plan Like a Pro

2/25/2020 (Permalink)

Map of the house and escape routes Creating a fire escape plan is the ultimate fire safety precaution you can take

Here Are The Basic Steps To Creating a Fire Escape Plan

In the unfortunate event of a house fire, you have approximately 3 – 4 minutes to leave the house. That means there is no time to waste or save a prized possession. You can only afford to implement an emergency escape plan before calling the firefighters.
Here are the basic steps to creating a fire escape plan in Academy, TX:

  1. Install fire alarms
  2. Create the plan
  3. Practice it

Install Fire Alarms

The most important part of any fire safety plan is installing smoke detectors in and outside the bedrooms. That should give you a head start when a fire breaks out and provide a rough idea of where the blaze might be. Also, you might want to let the kids know how a fire alarm sounds like, so they can never confuse it for something else.

Create the Plan

Once you have the detectors in place, it’s time to make the actual plan. Draw a map of the house and label every entry point before formulating the escape routes. Make sure every bedroom has two exits (window and door), and ensure they are in good working condition. Finally, agree on a meeting spot that is on the street side of the house.

Practice the Plan

Having a great fire escape plan is one thing, and knowing how to use it is another. To avoid confusion, make sure you practice the program at least twice a year. It should be as realistic as possible; and, don’t forget to assign someone to help people with physical limitations such as kids and the elderly. You might also want to acquire a foldable ladder to help people escape through the first-floor windows.
Creating a fire escape plan is the ultimate fire safety precaution you can take as a homeowner in Academy, TX. It is a proven way of saving lives and property in the event of a house fire.

Insurance Claims: Will This Cost Me In the End?

2/18/2020 (Permalink)

Blue ballpoint pen, two antique brass keys and a home insurance claim from on a plywood clipboard. It's possible that an insurance claim could raise your annual payment

Three Things To Consider

As you stare at soggy carpet and saturated dry wall, you can't help but think about the price tag. How expensive it is to fix this mess? Water issues can add us quickly with much of the impacted area needing to be torn out and replaced with brand new items. The cost of this plus cleaning can get steep; thus, filing an insurance claim seems the best option. Could this choice hurt you in the long run? If you're worried this may happen, here are three things to consider.

1. Have You Filed Before?
You would not be the first to request water damage repair. The question is how often are you using the policy? Much like car accidents, insurers don't want to constantly cover patrons who seek assistance often. It drains their funds. Once or even twice can be forgiven, but chronic applications may necessitate a rate hike to offset the costs.

2. Can You Afford the Fix?
Sometimes you need the insurance claim because you simply cannot foot the bill. You'll require a water restoration company in Holland, TX, to evaluate the premises, test the area and restore the room. This could cost thousands of dollars. If that money isn't in the bank, you might be better off incurring a fee increase over the year.

3. Who Is At Fault?
What caused this home flood? Was it someone else's blunder? If you can show that the utility company or contractor shares blame, then the insurer can seek reparation from them, alleviating pressure from your demand. This may be thought of as a no-fault situation. In addition, life is out of control at times. Did a storm send a tree through your roof? Freak occurrences may not be put on you.
It's possible that an insurance claim could raise your annual payment. Before calling your agent, think about what you can handle as well as whether you or someone else shares responsibility.

3 Steps To Cleaning Up Category 3 Flooding

1/28/2020 (Permalink)

Flooded hallway. Two air movers and a humidifier placed on hallway with water Flooded business in Chilton, TX

3 Steps To Cleaning Up Category 3 Flooding

When your Chilton, TX business suffers sewage flooding, it can be difficult to know where to begin in matters of cleanup. Flood water that originates from sewers and toilets is usually labeled as category 3 or extremely dirty and contaminated water. It may contain harsh chemicals, outdoor debris and both human and animal waste. If this type of flooding occurs in your business, there are a few steps you may want to take to have it cleaned up properly.

1. Seal Off the Area

If a toilet overflow was the cause of a category 3 flooding at your business, then you may want to seal off the area as best you can without coming into contact with the water. Close doors and stuff the bottoms with towels to prevent any seepage. You can also cordon off the hallway where the flood has taken place while you wait for help to arrive.

2. Call a Water Damage Service

Once the area is secure and the flood water is contained, it is time to put in a call to your local water damage and removal service. You can let them know the source of the flood, where it is located and the severity of the event. Once you have secured your team, it may be wise for you and your employees to avoid the flooded area until it arrives.

3. Clear the Area

Once the water removal team comes to handle your flood, they may advise you to clear the building until they can remediate the flooded area. Category 3 water often contains dangerous contaminants, so ensuring the building or area is totally evacuated can help your remediation team do their job without interference. Once the water is cleared away, your technicians will likely discuss what needs to be sanitized or replaced before beginning those processes.
When category 3 flood water invades your Chilton, TX business, the results can be catastrophic. Knowing which steps to take in the aftermath can help you handle the situation calmly and resume business as soon as possible.

The Role of Pretesting in Filing Insurance Claims for Property Damage

1/23/2020 (Permalink)

Moisture meter Pretesting is one step that can help keep claim amounts within an acceptable range

Disasters such as fires, floods, and severe storms can wreak havoc for Rosebud, TX, residential and commercial properties. These situations may displace entire families and businesses until the storm abates or fires are controlled. Unfortunately, once the smoke has cleared and the water has been diverted, the buildings, furnishings, possessions, and contents left behind have been severely damaged. Many property owners will work quickly to get an insurance claim filed, but the terms of that claim may leave them less coverage in the future. Pretesting is one step that can help keep claim amounts within an acceptable range, so property owners don't have to worry about higher premiums.

Why Testing Is Necessary

In many cases, pretesting is part of the initial inspection performed by property damage cleanup and remediation professionals. It's important that the testing takes place before an insurance agent files a claim:

  1. Pretesting identifies how much of a property is damaged and which types of materials have been damaged
  2. Professionals will determine whether there are any parts of the property that haven't been affected by the disaster
  3. Testing crews will decide when Items can be restored and what must be replaced

These efforts can improve the accuracy of claims by identifying and recording the severity and range of damage and related issues.

The Risk of Neglecting Testing

When testing isn't done properly, unnecessary losses may be reported resulting in long term consequences, such as increased premiums. Some disaster restoration companies provide pretesting because of their training in recognizing long=term damages and solutions.

Too Much Damage for Reconstruction

Unfortunately, there are some cases when the testing professionals have found that the damage is too severe for repairs, and reconstruction or replacement is the best option. Replacement of structures and contents may be the most cost-effective way to bring the property back to its pre-damaged condition.

When property owners contact their insurance agent to begin the claims process, they should also be sure that pretesting will take place. Get the best results with a disaster response company that understands the value of the testing.

Five Steps to a Mold-Free Building

1/8/2020 (Permalink)

Mold growth on a wall Mold on Marlin,TX

5 Steps You Can Take to Keep Your Office Mold-Free

Mold growth in your Marlin, TX, business can be a major hassle. Fortunately, it is possible to prevent many infestations. The following are five steps you can take to keep your office mold-free.

Keep humidity low. Because mold can survive on many surfaces and at most indoor temperatures, the best thing you can do is to keep the building dry. Even high humidity can lead to a mold infestation. Keep indoor humidity below 50% if possible, and do not let it exceed 60%. You may need to invest in a dehumidifier, especially if the building does not have air conditioning.

Routinely check for signs of mold growth. There are some common locations, like bathrooms, where mold is more likely to grow. Be sure to routinely check these areas and remove any mold as soon as possible. Additionally, do not forget to check in non-visible locations, such as behind shelves and in ductwork.

Address any water damage as soon as possible. If your business suffers water damage, make sure to dry out the property quickly. You may not have time to wait for an insurance adjuster to visit before beginning cleanup. Mold can start to grow within 24 hours, so act quickly to prevent an infestation.

Make sure items are completely dry before putting them away. Never put away items that are wet. Damp material can foster mold growth, which can then spread to nearby items.

Use an air purifier. Air purifiers can trap mold spores before they have a chance to grow. Not every business will need to invest in a filtration system, but it can be helpful for companies located in humid regions or that deal with a lot of water.

Mold growth can be difficult to remove fully, so it is best to prevent it whenever possible. However, if you do encounter a mold infestation, a certified restoration company can help you get your business back to normal quickly and safely.

Protecting Your Business and Employees During a Thunderstorm

12/23/2019 (Permalink)

Lightning storm over city in purple light Thunderstorm in Belton, TX

Protecting Your Business and Employees During a Thunderstorm

Protecting Your Business and Employees During a Thunderstorm

When you think of natural disasters that can destroy a building, tornadoes and hurricanes probably come to mind. However, thunderstorms can be just as devastating. That is why businesses in Belton, TX, need to properly prepare for this type of rain storm.
Thunderstorms actually pose numerous risks to people and businesses. These possible dangers include:

  • Heavy rains
  • Lightning
  • High winds
  • Hail

Lightning, which accompanies thunderstorms, kills more people each year than hurricanes or tornadoes. It can also lead to power outages that may affect your commercial building. To limit the storm damage to your property and protect your employees, you should follow the below steps.

Get Informed

The most important thing you can do before a storm is listen to the local weather reports. Find out if there is a severe thunderstorm watch or warning in your area. Thunderstorms are considered severe if they have wind gusts of at least 58 miles per hour or hail that is at least one inch in diameter. If a watch or warning has been issued, take appropriate steps to keep your employees and your assets safe.

Prepare in Advance

Prior to the rain storm, you and your employees should designate a safe location within the building where everyone can gather. The location should be away from skylights or windows. Avoid places that may be prone to flood damage.
Be sure to trim any branches near your office before the wind comes. You should also maintain any lightning rods on the premises.
You may want to create a disaster preparedness plan, as well. Have important phone numbers handy, including the contact information for a storm cleanup and restoration services company.

Remain Safe

Make sure your employees stay inside until the weather clears up. They should also avoid using any electrical equipment until the flood cleanup is complete.
A rain storm can put your office and your employees at risk. With proper preparation and communication with your workers, you can limit the effect on your business and keep everyone safe.

3 Things To Watch Out For in a Partial Damage Fire

12/23/2019 (Permalink)

Ceiling collapsed, ceiling covered with smoke damage Fire damage in Marlin, TX

Look Out For the Following in a Partial Damage Fire

Partial damage fires are some of the most overlooked commercial insurance claims. Filing a claim for fire restoration can be helpful in returning your workplace to its former condition. As you set out to restore your commercial property after exposure to fire, look out for the following concerns.

1. Restoration vs. Replacement

When filing an insurance claim after a fire loss, many business owners are under the impression that their insurance coverage will only address the cost of replacing damaged items. While a commercial fire loss policy is helpful for replacement, it can also be used to cover the cost of restoration. If a fire incident at your business is considered a partial loss, it is likely that some items were damaged but not completely destroyed. Ask your insurance provider about your coverage for restoration services, including the following:

  • Odor removal
  • Carpet and upholstery cleaning
  • Soot cleanup

2. Hidden Damage

If a partial damage fire occurs at or near your commercial property, make sure to hire a professional fire inspector to check the area for hidden damage. Harm from a fire may be present but difficult for the untrained eye to detect. Fire-related losses may be just below the surface, including water leaks, smoke damage, poor air quality, or ash and soot in the air ducts.

3. Uniformity

If restoration after a partial loss fire is a priority, work closely with your insurance provider and a Marlin, TX, restoration crew to make certain uniformity is achieved. Restoration is an effort to return your facility to its pre-fire state. This process may require the replacement of non-damaged items, such as flooring or cabinetry, to make sure the overall appearance and function are brought back up to previous standards.
Whether you experience a small workplace fire, or a neighboring fire brings up potential concerns, contact your commercial insurer to begin the process of filing a claim. Fire loss may appear minimal at first glance, but with careful inspection and calculation, you can get the most out of your insurance policy.