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3 Types of Damage Caused by Fire

5/19/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial 3 Types of Damage Caused by Fire San Antonio commercial fire

After your commercial building in San Antonio, TX, is affected by a fire, you may expect to take on a fire cleanup. What you might not realize is that this process has to tackle other types of damage as well, which could make a smoke and water cleanup necessary too. Your commercial fire restoration team can help you make sense of the three different kinds of damage caused during a fire.

1. Fire: When flames engulf your building, they can cause a charring effect on your walls, ceiling, roof, furnishings, flooring and other belongings. Fire can turn your once well-furnished office space into piles of ashes. Typically, a fire cleanup includes a lot of rebuilding and replacing as well as the initial cleaning.


2. Water: Water is used to put out a fire. Many business owners hope the water can quench the flames before they turn belongings into ash. When water is sprayed on a fire by firefighters and sprinkler systems, it can cause a lot of water damage on almost every surface. Part of water cleanup is drying out the waterlogged belongings to ensure mold doesn't start to grow in the space.


3. Smoke: Smoke is a byproduct of fire. The damage caused by smoke depends on the fuel that fed the fire. Burning synthetic materials may result in a smoke with higher acidity, which can create a harder smoke cleanup process. Smoke often stains ceilings, floors, drapes and windows, but it can also damage electronics and other belongings. Removing the layer of soot and deodorizing the space are often the major components of this type of cleanup.

Some of the damage caused during a fire may not be a direct result of the flames themselves, but they still need to be addressed during the fire cleanup procedure. If smoke or water cleanup is skipped, your building may have hidden problems in the future.

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Cleaning Your Belongings After a Fire

5/14/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Cleaning Your Belongings After a Fire Fire damage in Antonio TX

The fire trucks have left and the fire marshall says your home is safe again, but a strong, smoky odor remains. Will you have to get rid of everything? How much dry-cleaning, wall-scrubbing and airing out is it going to take to get your life back to normal? Here are some content cleaning guidelines to help you get started.

Clothing
Dry-cleaning is often the best choice for getting smoke-damaged clothing clean, but there are alternatives. Easy-care clothes with a light smoke smell can be washed using your normal laundry detergent and a tablespoon of vanilla. Stronger smells and soot may need to be washed with a mixture of trisodium phosphate and chlorine bleach. (Note that trisodium phosphate is caustic and must be used with caution.)

Upholstery and Carpet
Removing odors and soot from upholstery and carpet may require a dry-cleaning step followed by a wet-cleaning step. Talk to a professional in San Antonio, TX, to determine what process will work best for your situation.

Non-Porous Items
Items made of metal, glass, rubber, plastic and ceramic can be cleaned effectively using ultrasonic machines. These machines use high frequency sound waves to remove smoke particles from your possessions.

Walls and Ceilings
If your walls and ceilings are blackened from the fire, you may want to consider using temporary content storage for your moveable possessions so that you can focus on cleaning the structure itself. As with carpet and upholstery, it may take several steps to get things satisfactorily clean. These steps may include scrubbing with detergent, scrubbing with trisodium phosphate and, sometimes, applying fresh primer and paint.

Cleaning your home after a fire takes a lot of time and work, but it can be done. Tackle cleaning projects such as dry-cleaning and carpet shampooing one at a time. Get help from friends, family and restoration professionals. And rest assured that your life will indeed return to normal soon.

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3 Ways To Discover Mold in Your Air Ducts

4/20/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation 3 Ways To Discover Mold in Your Air Ducts HVAC Cleaning is important in your San Antonio Home

Mold is everywhere. There is no such thing as a mold-free environment. Without regular HVAC cleaning in your commercial property in San Antiono, however, it could attach to the dust molecules in your air ducts and result in poor air quality. You can usually see or smell an insidious mold problem, but to be certain, you can also have your HVAC system tested for mold.

1. Professional Testing

The most thorough and foolproof method for discovering whether or not there is a mold problem in your air ducts is to have your building professionally tested. This process can be a little costly, but it is well worth the price if it means you catch the problem early before mold causes damage to various parts of your HVAC system. It is less expensive in the long run to pay for minor mold testing and HVAC cleaning than to incur the cost of the extensive damage that could result from a long-term mold issue.

2. Visual Survey

There are two things that you should be on the lookout for when you check for mold. Of course, seeing patches of mold itself when cleaning vents is a clear sign that you need mold remediation. Another issue to watch for is excess moisture. If you see any condensation or if the building is extra humid, you may have found a breeding ground for mold.

3. Olfactory Cues

If your commercial building in San Antonio, smells musty or reeks of mildew, chances are that you may have a mold problem. You can run an informal test of whether the problem is in your air ducts or not. Turn your HVAC unit off for a little while. After you turn it back on, compare the intensity of the mildew smell. If it smells stronger when the unit is on, you may have pinpointed the location of the mold.

Whether you see it, smell it or test for it, a mold issue must be remediated. A professional HVAC cleaning can improve air quality by ridding your system of mold growth.

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Cleaning After a Category Three Flood

4/15/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Cleaning After a Category Three Flood Flooding after Pipe Break can cause a major water loss

Firms that help manage water damage often follow a list of procedures. Although there may be a vast difference in a toilet overflow and storm flood water, both can cause a great deal of damage in San Antonio. For the cleanup crew, the goal is usually the same: Remove the contaminated water as quickly as possible. Sewer cleanup is considered a category three flood and typically requires the same skills in cleaning as any other serious flood. Here are four ways a restoration team can help get a commercial building open after any type of category three water damage.

Surveying the Property

Measuring the moisture level during an inspection of the property is the first step in a rapid response to category three water damage. The amount of contamination often determines the amount of tear out required. The tear out can include walls, flooring, appliances, and personal possessions. A special moisture meter can be used to detect polluted seepage beneath the surface flooring and within the walls.

Removing the Water

Removing standing water may be the next step in the restoration objective. The team can use commercial extractors or modified vacuums to suck the excess water into large vats for easy removal. If necessary, a truck-mounted vacuum may be required to deal with heavy flood water.

Eliminating the Moisture

The drying process is frequently done next with high-speed fans and commercial dehumidifiers. If the moisture is hidden or inaccessible, portions of walls or floors may need to be cut out to allow airflow and speed moisture removal.

Sanitizing the Area

Category three water can contaminate anything it touches; therefore, it is often necessary to eliminate pathogens, viruses, and bacteria left behind on polluted surfaces. The restoration team can use fungicides and bactericides to destroy the unwanted microbes and mold spores.

Within a few days after the toilet overflow or flood water removal, the building can be completely safe and odor-free. With the help of a restoration team in San Antonio , business can quickly resume.

Use Landscaping To Protect Your Home From Flooding – Here’s How

4/10/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Use Landscaping To Protect Your Home From Flooding – Here’s How Landscaping in front of your home can keep flood waters out.

If your home floods frequently, it may be because of your landscaping. Outside flooding is the first indicator of inside flooding. Fortunately, you can reduce the amount of flooding that your home sees each year with a few tried and true landscaping tricks. There are a few measures you can take to mitigate rain storm damage:

• Direct downspouts away from your home
• Leave a gap between your mulch and siding
• Grade your lawn in the right direction
• Use grass barriers

Redirect Your Downspouts

Make sure your downspouts are pointed away from your home and, if possible, extend them so the opening is at least 20 feet away from your structure. This may seem like a long way, but doing so can prevent outside flooding and subsequent erosion near your home’s foundation.

Leave a Gap

When laying mulch or other ground covering materials, leave a six-inch gap between the border of the covering and your home’s siding. If you go any closer than that, your siding may absorb the moisture from the mulch, which can cause premature erosion.

Grade Your Lawn

Many landscape grades tend to run toward a home instead of away from it. This doesn’t make any sense, as it redirects the rain drainage directly to the home. If your home is constantly flooding, it may be because of your lawn’s grade. Regrade it so water runs away from your home instead of at it.

Use Barriers

Sporadic pools of water in your yard may be an early sign of foundational issues. Fortunately, the fix is easy. Build up grass barriers to create a pathway for the water to drain. This will keep your yard puddle-free and your foundation safe.

Outside flooding is a key indicator of problems to come. If you notice that your yard is flooded after a rainstorm, it may be time to invest in additional rain drainage measures. Work with your San Antonio, landscaping team to create a yard that is beautiful and stormproof.

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How to Stop Mildew Growth on Plants

3/29/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation How to Stop Mildew Growth on Plants Mold growing on Plants

Mildew on plants is often white or light gray in color and may be present on either the surface or underside of leaves. Whether your plants are suffering from powdery or downy mildew, there are ways to stop the growth of plant mildew. Follow these three steps as soon as you notice indications of mildew growth.

Step One: Identify the Mildew

Start by identifying whether you are dealing with powdery mildew or downy mildew. Powdery mildew usually looks like white splotches that spread across the surface of the leaves on a plant. Powdery mildew is not necessarily fatal to plants, but it is still a good idea to try to restrict the spread of this parasitic fungus. Downy mildew typically grows on the underside of leaves and is either white or light gray in color and may have small black flecks.

Step Two: Prune the Plants

Remove infected portions of the plant and destroy them to limit the spread of plant mildew. This is also a good way to improve air circulation. It is a good idea not to fertilize plants that are suffering from mildew, and avoid watering these plants from above.

Step Three: Use a Fungicide

If you are dealing with stubborn powdery or downy mildew, you may want to rely on a fungicide to take care of the problem. Be sure to use the right type and strength of fungicide for the affected plant. Most fungicides must be reapplied every one to two weeks to prevent mildew from returning.

If you still struggle with plant mildew after following all of these steps, you should assess the environment in which your plants are growing. You may want to seek the professional opinion of mold and mildew experts in San Antonio, TX. High levels of humidity and insufficient air circulation are two major culprits when it comes to mildew growth.

Visit us at http://www.SERVPROalamoranch.com for more information. 

Flush a Water Heater in 4 Easy Steps

3/21/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Flush a Water Heater in 4 Easy Steps Water Heater Flush in Texas

Water heater maintenance is fairly simple, but it can go a long way toward preserving the integrity of your device and extending the life of it. One thing that you can do to prevent costly repairs and damage is to flush it regularly. If you have never performed a water heater flush before and want to know how, this post can serve as your guide. Before you begin, you will need the following:

• A standard garden hose
• A screwdriver
• An outside area to which you can divert water
• Protective gear

Once you have the necessary tools, it’s time to get to work.

1. Turn Off the Device

Before you can begin working on your water heater, you need to turn it off. For a gas heater, extinguish the pilot. For an electrical one, pop the breaker that powers the heater.

2. Connect the Hose and Prep the Area

Once your heater is off, prep the drainage area and connect the hose to the drain valve. Be sure to wear protective gear while you work to prevent burning and bacteria contamination.

3. Start Draining

Once the area is prepped and the hose is attached, it’s time to start draining. Open the drain valve and allow the water to stream for several minutes. You can help the water drain faster by opening the kitchen sink’s hot water valve. Wait a few minutes, and then turn it off. Wait until the flow of water from the hose has turned into a trickle, then go inside, turn on the hot water faucet once more and let the remainder of the water flush.

4. Close Off the Valves and Restore Power

Once the tank is completely empty, disconnect the hose and close the valves. Turn on your kitchen faucet and leave it on until the flow of water has returned to normal. Once you’ve confirmed that the tank is full, restore power to the heater.

By routinely flushing the water heater in your San Antonio,TX, home, you can extend the life of your heater by years. Follow the steps above for guidance.

Visit us at http://www.SERVPROalamoranch.com for more information. 

Act Fast Post-Flood To Prevent Excessive Mold Damage

3/16/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial Act Fast Post-Flood To Prevent Excessive Mold Damage Commercial Water Loss Clean up

If your building was recently involved in a flood, it is imperative that you implement cleanup measures with 24 to 48 hours after the incident; otherwise, you risk mold growth and bacteria buildup. The storm damage restoration team in Alamo Ranch, TX, has tips to help you make the flood cleanup process as easy and as effective as possible. Those tips are as follows:

• Inspect the building’s contents
• Extract standing water
• Remove the building’s contents
• Clean up
• Dry out the building

Inspection Is Key

First and foremost, inspect your building and its contents for signs of moisture. Anywhere there is moisture, there is a risk for mold. Take inventory of all contents that are damaged, a task that will assist with the cleanup process and help with your insurance claim later on.

Extract Water

Once you’ve inspected your building, begin to extract any sitting water. This may require the help of a professional water restoration company. The professionals use commercial pumps and dehumidifiers to rid your building of standing water and any moisture that remains in the air or the walls. This step is especially important to preventing mold growth.

Remove Contents

Once your building no longer has any water in it, go in (upon receiving the go-ahead from a professional) and begin to clear out the contents. Unfortunately, you may have to toss unsalvageable items such as carpet, wood furniture, couches and chairs, but many of your contents may be savable. You may have to remove drywall and insulation as well.

Clean Up

Once the contents are out, it’s time to clean up. If your carpet is savable, use a wet/dry vacuum to clean up debris and possible bacteria. Clean the walls, frames, salvable furniture and any visible signs of mold with sanitizers and heavy-duty cleaners.

Dry It Out

Once everything has been cleaned, dry out your building with dehumidifiers and fans to kill mold spores. This last step is important to preventing future mold damage.

Mold growth can happen quickly. To prevent mold damage from wreaking havoc on your building, take the above steps immediately after a flood.

Visit us at http://www.SERVPROalamoranch.com for more information. 

Assessing Mold Damage

2/19/2018 (Permalink)

If you have a black mold problem, you have a moisture problem. Mold spores exist everywhere. They are small and float easily on the air, which allows them to permeate most areas. These spores thrive in wet environments, so high levels of moisture in your building will likely lead to mold growth.

Causes

It doesn’t take much to get mold to grow. Given the right setting, black mold can begin growing within 24 to 48 hours. Here are some contributing factors to an infestation.

• Presence of mold spores
• Warm temperature
• Organic food source like wood, cotton, dirt or drywall.
• Moisture
• Time

When a facility experiences an unhealthy presence of mold growth, it is typically due to a moisture issue. This may be due to an obvious concern like a leaking roof, a flooded toilet or a plumbing problem. Other factors that might be an issue are high humidity, inadequate ventilation or condensation buildup.

Assessing the Problem

If you are only dealing with minor surface mold, calling in an expert might not be necessary. On the other hand, if the damage is extensive, it might be wise to contact a professional mold remediation company in San Antonio, TX who employ certified and trained specialists in mold assessment to help with the mold cleanup. Mold assessment and identification may not be as easy as spotting the obvious presence of black mold growth; it requires visual examination and testing as well.

Spores can get in hard-to-reach places like behind walls, in ventilation ducts, beneath sinks and under carpets. This means its presence may go undetected for some time. Special equipment may be necessary to determine whether mold is growing in some of these places.

If you suspect an extensive mold problem, it is important to take steps to remediate the issue. Make sure to regularly check your facility for moisture damage that might lead to mold growth. Visit http://www.SERVPROalamoranch.com for more information on mold. 

3 Important Steps for Cleaning up Your Home After a Fire

2/14/2018 (Permalink)

Dealing with a house fire in San Antonio, TX can be a daunting task. Not only do you have to worry about taking care of your family and finding a place to stay, you also need to decide how to deal with smoke damage, cleaning, repairs, etc. Luckily, there are a few straightforward steps you can take to get your life back on track.

1. Make Sure the Area Is Safe

When it comes to fires, appearances can be deceiving. While you may not see any flames, fire may still exist deep within your house. It can be best not to go too close or enter the structure until the fire department tells you it’s safe. Your home may be contaminated by unclean water and ash, so it can be best to wait for professional help before attempting to move or touch items.

2. Decide What Needs to Be Done

After you’ve made sure you’re safe, one of the next steps you should take is to contact your insurance company. Your coverage provider can help you understand the costs related to cleaning up smoke and soot damage. You may need to make a list of everything that was damaged or destroyed. Important documents and credit cards may need to be replaced.

3. Get Professional Help

It can be nearly impossible to handle all the things that need to be done after a fire on your own. Hiring a professional damage restoration company to help take care of smoke cleaning and other repairs can save you a world of stress. A restoration company will generally know exactly what needs to be done to fix your home and possessions, hopefully returning them to their previous states.

After you make sure it is safe to enter your home, you can inventory your possessions and decide what repairs need to be done. A restoration company can help you fix smoke damage and complete other necessary tasks to get your home back to a livable state. Visit http://www.SERVPROalamoranch.com for more information on fire damage.