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3 Steps To Take After Water Damages Your Home

8/18/2021 (Permalink)

Drying equipment (air movers) area has been damaged by water, drywall removal, flood cuts performed Water cleanup to a home in Bronxville, NY.

3 Things to Do If Your Home Has Water Damage

Whether broken pipes, faulty water lines or flooding causes water to invade your Bronxville, NY, home, the results can be devastating. Electrical systems, furniture and expensive appliances may become waterlogged, and unreplaceable items like photo albums and documents may be ruined. While water damage can be difficult to overcome, there are a few actions you can take until a professional storm cleanup and restoration company arrives to lend a hand.

1. Make Safety a Priority

If the flood was caused by a faulty appliance or broken pipes, enter the area carefully. Wear rubber boots and gloves, turn off the water lines and, if you are certain it is safe, cut the power to affected rooms. Hold off on removing items unless they are in imminent danger of being ruined, and then seal off the room to prevent the water from spreading into other rooms.

2. Call Your Insurance Agent

If you have flood insurance that is separate from your homeowners' policy, call your agent right away and let him or her know what has happened. Starting a claim as soon as possible can help your agent be more efficient in filing and may get coverage funds to you more quickly. Ask your agent what else is required of you at the outset, and take the information down in detail so you do not forget any important points.

3. Call for Water Removal

If you are dealing with flood waters, calling in flood mitigation and water cleanup services can be a safe and efficient way to deal with water damage. The professionals who work for these companies can advise you on what parts of your home need to be repaired, how to clean and sanitize items damaged in the flood and remove contaminated water for proper disposal.

When water damage impacts your Bronxville, NY, home, it is hard to know where to begin when it comes to cleanup efforts. However, taking a few simple steps can get the process started and help you assess which areas of your home need the most attention.

Bread Is Superfood for Mold

8/11/2021 (Permalink)

Loaf of bread with mold growth Bread mold is fascinating in science class, but it is not appetizing.

Why Does Mold Grow On Food?

Mold is everywhere, frustrating as that is. What’s even more frustrating, however, is growth on the new loaf of bread you just purchased at the market. Bread mold may be interesting in science class, but it isn’t edible, so why does mold grow on foods? It needs nutrients.

Understand Why Color Means Nutrition

A variety of colorful foods equates to better nutrition. This does not mean that the black, blue or green fuzz growing on your bread is healthy, nor is fridge mold, so steer clear. Just like humans, however, mold needs proper nutrition to flourish, and food provides it with the necessary fuel it needs to sustain life.

Learn Fun Fungi Family Facts

Mold is fungi, just as mushrooms are, and fungus growth excels in humid climates, such as the climate found in Tuckahoe, NY. Although fungi are a plant, they do not contain chlorophyll, which is an important pigmentation that allows plants to absorb solar energy. Therefore, fungi must find energy elsewhere.

Bread mold can grow quickly, particularly during the summer, because

  • The bread itself provides the mold with a highly palatable nutrient source.
  • The bread is wrapped in plastic, which holds in moisture.
  • The bread is kept in warmer areas of your home, such as the pantry.

Basically, mold is a carbohydrate junkie, and it can thrive on a loaf of bread. In fact, it can double within an hour. Even if you wrap the bread tightly in its packaging after each use, the mold spores in the air, which number in the millions, have already settled on the unused loaf.

Toss the Bread

If your loaf is growing bread mold, wrap it tightly, toss it, and work toward a better storage solution. For example, store only what you’ll use within a day or two in your pantry and keep the rest of your bread frozen to prevent the loaf from becoming a Petri dish.

Mold is a common occurrence in Tuckahoe, NY, that can affect more than your loaf of bread, but there’s no need to worry about fungus growth when you work with restoration specialists. They can deal with the problem quickly and effectively.

Financial Help for Flood Damage

8/4/2021 (Permalink)

mud on floor, flood damage Residential flood damage to a home in Scarsdale, NY.

Flood Damage Financial Assistance

Most homeowners in Scarsdale, NY don't realize that homeowner insurance does not cover floods. Separate policies are needed and those often take 30 days to go into effect. If you don't have flood insurance but damage to your home was caused by a storm in an area declared a federal disaster area, you may be eligible for FEMA grants. Here's what you need to know.

1. Federal Disaster areas are attributed to certain events are and are designated regions. You can find these at the FEMA website: https://www.fema.gov/disasters/year.
2. Funds may be available for damage to your property, including your vehicle or personal property.
3. You can apply for a grant online.
4. An inspector will call you after you apply. Official inspectors have identification, do not ask for money and don't recommend certain contractors for repairs.
5. Grant money may pay for temporary housing, repairs, medical, or funeral expenses caused by the approved event.
6. You may still be eligible for assistance if you already made repairs and cleanup. Always take before and after photos.
7. You should still apply for assistance even if you have flood insurance or think your income may disqualify you.
8. Low-interest SBA disaster loans may also be available.

Flood damage comes with a lot of complications including contamination of your home and personal property. A professional flood remediator can help you by using their expertise to remove what cannot be saved and clean what can. They are trained in disinfecting and cleaning all kinds of materials, as well as thoroughly drying your property to prevent the development of mold.

If you have never been through a flood, don't wait until it's too late. You can find out if your property is on a floodplain by checking the FEMA website. If you are at a higher risk for a flood, consider getting a specific flood insurance policy.

When Should I Clean My Dryer Vent?

7/23/2021 (Permalink)

A person cleaning a lint trap. To prevent lint fire damage caused by overheated combustible lint, the dryer venting system should be regularly inspected

When Should My Dryer Vent Be Cleaned?

When you clean the lint trap of your dryer after a load of laundry, you are removing pieces of the fabric that was just dried. As the clothing tosses to-and-fro within the drum, small bits of fabric often rub off because of the friction created when the materials brush against one another. Some of the bits of fabric often slip through the lint trap and can collect in the dryer exhaust tubing. Over time, the fluff can build up and become a hazard because a lint fire can start using the highly-combustible fabric bits and the tiniest of sparks.

Fire Prevention

To prevent lint fire damage caused by overheated combustible lint, the dryer venting system should be regularly inspected. Although it is often difficult to know when to clean the vent, here are some helpful hints that can act as red flags:

Airflow does not move easily through the tubing.
Vent hoses have kinks or holes.
An abnormal amount of lint begins to accumulate in the lint trap.
Dryer vent has not been cleaned in over a year.

Another sign that your vent may need cleaning is if the time it takes to dry your clothing changes significantly or if the body of the dryer becomes excessively hot. When the heat becomes extreme, the chances of a fire can grow. That is why dryer obstructions, even minor issues, can cause serious problems and possibly lead to a dryer fire.

Fire Cleanup

If a fire does break out in your laundry room, contact a fire damage restoration team. Not only can the professionals inspect the fire-damaged area, but they can also remove the water, smoke, and soot within the room. Once cleaning has been completed, the team can also help remove the smoke odor that can linger long after the fire-damaged area has been restored. A lint fire does not have to leave your home in Secor Gardens, NY in shambles; a team of experts can quickly restore the area.

The 3 Most Common Places To Find Mold

7/20/2021 (Permalink)

Mold growth on a wall Black mold damage on a wall in Elsmere, NY.

Mold Growth In a Commercial Structure

Mold requires moisture and nutriment to grow. High humidity levels, leaks, or other sources of excessive moisture can result in a mold problem. Here are three common places for mold growth in a commercial structure.

1. Behind Walls

Water damage that results from any type of leak, whether caused by a pipe leak or burst or a leaky roof, can cause mold to start growing within cavity walls. Moisture can also come from condensation or a poorly sealed building envelope. Building owners, facilities managers, or occupants may notice a moldy odor without seeing signs of visible mold. Do not attempt to open the wall, as this may cause exposure to microbial volatile organic compounds, spores, or even mycotoxin.

2. In the Carpet

Carpets collect dirt, dust, and debris that provide an ample food source for mold. Flooding, leaks or spills can soak through the carpet to the carpet pad and underlayment. High humidity can also promote an environment that is prone to mold growth. Increase airflow, raise room temperature or rely on dehumidifiers and fans to lower moisture levels. In the event of a flood or water damage, a wet vac can be used to extract water within the first 48 hours. If water stands for longer, discard the carpet.

3. Throughout the HVAC System

A number of HVAC components rely on moisture to provide cooling. Be sure to regularly inspect condensate pans, ductwork, and terminal units. Owners or managers may want to hire professionals or have the system modified with access doors so that it is easier to check for mold.

Mold may also develop in any location where water is usually present, such as bathrooms or near a water heater. Building owners or facilities managers should contact a commercial mold remediation company as soon as they suspect mold growth is occurring in structures in Elsmere, NY.

A Basic Understanding of Mold

7/20/2021 (Permalink)

Drywall has been removed and mold has been discovered. Commercial mold damage.

The sensational descriptions of it in media might deter one from seeing mold as anything more than a nightmarish substance wrought with risks of danger and damage. Whether it is black mold or a more benign colony, an understanding of mold can help prevent its spread; conveniently, the most effective way to handle the funky fungus.

What Causes Mold Growth?

Microscopic mold spores are everywhere, outdoors and indoors. They can be carried in the air, transported through HVAC systems or on the backs of pets and the bottom of shoes. Inherently harmless, the spores only become a fungal nuisance when exposed to four key elements:

  • Darkness
  • Moisture
  • Organic nutrients
  • A surface to grow on

Thus, a moisture problem can quickly become a mold problem when left unattended. The spores feed on dirt and dust remnants from the surface material, developing into a colony when exposed to increased moisture levels. Any water damage, leaking pipes, high humidity, or excessive levels of condensation can be breeding ground for any mold, including the black mold strain known for its higher risk of toxins. Before mold remediation can begin, all issues of water and moisture must be addressed so that the mold doesn’t have an opportunity to return.

What Gets Rid of Mold?

Due to the near-universal presence of the spores, removal isn’t an accurate term for mold cleanup. Instead, Yonkers, NY, professionals can remediate the problem using a variety of tactics:

• Mold containment: HVAC systems and fans are turned off to limit the spread of spores.
• Air filtration: Clearing the air of spores that may have spores from the presence of mold growth.
• Removal of mold-infested materials: Porous materials such as drywall and carpet may need replacement if exposed to heavy mold or black mold.
• Cleaning: A thorough cleaning of personal belongings and air quality can remove any odor and ensure a complete mold cleanup.

Coping With Water Damage

7/13/2021 (Permalink)

Flood cuts performed on drywall, one air mover placed to dry up area that was damaged by water Drying up the area that was damaged by water in a Mount Vernon, NY home

How Do You Deal With Water Damage

Water damage in Mount Vernon, NY, can happen suddenly and unexpectedly. Whether the result of a storm, broken pipes, or a washing machine malfunction, you’re suddenly facing a big water cleanup task. When you’re preparing to address the mess, consider the following:

  • Safety
  • Assessment
  • Cleanup and Repairs

Keep It Safe

One of the first steps you should take is shutting off power in the affected areas since water and electricity are a dangerous, potentially deadly, mix. If you need to go into the damaged space, consider the source of the water; if there’s any chance of contamination, such as from stormwater or an overflowing toilet, wear protective clothing and wash hands thoroughly after handling anything that has been in the water.

Assess the Damage

If the damage is significant, you may want to contact your insurance company to find out whether or not you have coverage. Keep in mind that water damage is different from flood damage, and insurance companies adjust differently for the two. If you are covered, an adjuster will likely want to take pictures of the damage to help evaluate your claim. You may want to take your own pictures as well in order to have a record of what has happened.

Cleaning Up and Making Repairs

It is important to act fast when you have standing water, as mold and bacteria can begin to grow in as little as 24 to 48 hours. Even if the damage was caused by clean water, the longer it stands, the better the chance of contamination.

In most cases, you should contact a restoration professional to come out and evaluate the situation. These people have the knowledge, experience and equipment to deal with the problem safely and efficiently. They can advise you about the extent of your damages and the need for any repairs, whether fixing broken pipes or replacing damaged wallboard.

Water damage can be frustrating and overwhelming, but following these steps can help you manage the problem as efficiently as possible so that you can get your home and your life back to normal.

3 Things to Keep in Mind While Creating a Fire Escape Plan

7/13/2021 (Permalink)

Map of a house and escape routes Make your escape plan as effective as possible.

How Do You Make an Escape Plan?

According to the American Red Cross, creating a fire escape plan is one of the best ways to prevent serious injury or even death in your home if and when a fire happens to break out. However, not just any old emergency escape plan is going to get the job done. Ideally, a good fire escape plan should:

  • Take into account family pets and young and disabled family members who need assistance
  • Include multiple exit routes
  • Highlight what needs to be done after the fire is extinguished

By taking these issues into consideration during the beginning stages of planning, you can make your escape plan as effective as possible.

Assistance

Members of your family such as toddlers, the elderly, and pets will likely need assistance with getting out of the house if a blaze starts. Therefore, when you create your fire escape plan, appoint someone who is able-bodied to assist these individuals. Each appointed person should only be responsible for one other individual or pet.

Choosing Routes

The last thing you want is to have the exit you indicated in your emergency escape plan to be blocked off, ruining the plan and leaving you and your family fumbling for alternatives. Rather than risk that happening, make use of your home’s other exits, such as windows, back doors and more during your escape plan. Running drills using these exits is always advisable.

Post-Fire

Making it out of your house in one piece is the main point, but there are a few steps you’ll need to take after you make it safely outdoors. First, call 911 emergency services. Then, get in touch with your family and friends to notify them that you’re safe. Next, get any people or pets who’ve been injured to medical care right away. Stay out of your home, reach out to your insurance company, and get in touch with a fire cleanup crew in Fleetwood, NY ASAP.

Following Red Cross endorsed steps can keep your family safer and get your home back to normal sooner. Be sure to put these tips to good use.

How To Protect Your Business During a Thunderstorm: 3 Tips

7/13/2021 (Permalink)

Lightning rod on roof Keep your lightning rod maintained.

How To Protect Your Business and Employes From Storms

When thunderstorms march across West Mount Vernon, NY, they can cause serious damage to your business. Power outages, downed tree limbs and flooding from a torrential rain storm are all possibilities. However, there are several strategies you can use to protect your business and employees from harm when these storms appear.

1. Keep Your Lightning Rod Maintained

If your business is located in a tall building that may attract lightning, then maintaining the lightning rod can be essential. Have the rod checked annually for damage and ask your certification professionals to verify that it is up to code. If your business is located in an area where lightning is common, it is wise to have the unit cleaned and inspected at least twice a year.

2. Maintain All Trees on the Property

High winds can turn tree limbs into projectiles that may shatter your building’s windows and cause serious injury to your customers or employees. While trees can add aesthetic beauty to your property, take care to have them trimmed and maintained so dead branches do not detach and strike people entering your business below. Trimming trees away from your building’s power lines can protect its power source during a thunderstorm, where they might otherwise become entangled.

3. Have a Flood Plan in Place

A heavy rainstorm can cause flooding, which can happen suddenly and cause a considerable amount of damage to your business. Having a flood plan in place can prevent this, especially in the case of mitigation services. Contacting a storm damage and flood cleanup service before the wet season can be a wise choice because if your building should experience flooding, you will have help on hand right away instead of trying to find it during a disaster.

Your Tuckahoe, NY, business can take a pounding during a rain storm that includes wind or hail. Knowing how to protect your employees, customers and property can give you an edge over bad weather, no matter when it might happen.

3 Steps To Take in Case of Water Damage From Severe Storms

6/18/2021 (Permalink)

two air movers placed on the floor of an office Water damage impacts local business.

3 Steps To Take In Case Of Water Damage From A Bad Storm

When floodwater enters a building in Bronxville, NY, the results could lead property owners to spend thousands of dollars on repairs. Knowing what to do and acting fast after water damage from severe storms could save building owners money. Water damage from severe weather conditions can result from:

  • Floods
  • Burst pipes
  • A leaking roof

1. Clean the Water Immediately
If you allow water to sit on your property, the porous natural construction materials will sop it up, leading to water stains, microbial growth, and other problems. Use mops, towels, or rags to remove as much of the water as possible. If it is a leaking roof or a burst pipe, take the appropriate steps to stop water from damaging more materials. Make sure you wear protective gear if you are dealing with black water or water that is highly contaminated.

2. Contact Your Insurance Company
It is common for insurance companies to cover water damage costs from floodwater. Contact your insurance provider before taking any steps to fix the building and prevent unnecessary costs. Doing so could save you thousands of dollars on repairs in addition to your insurance costs.

3. Hire a Professional Service
A professional water damage restoration service can help you clean, dehumidify, and restore your property to its normal state. Cleaning up storm damage can be a rigorous task. Sometimes it is more beneficial for property owners to hire a professional service. Research your local companies to hire the best one for you.
Flood water can lead to irreparable damages, especially if water is allowed to sit on the natural construction materials of a building. Take the appropriate steps to prevent unbudgeted costs of an emergency repair. Doing so could save you time and money, valuable resources that are better spent at your discretion.