3 Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Use Mold Home Testing Kits
Why Call a Mold Remediation Expert Instead of Trying to Do it On Your Own
If you’ve noticed spores in your home in Dallas, TX, it can be tempting to buy a mold testing kit to do yourself. The price tag may look quite a bit more appealing than hiring a professional, but you will most likely end up paying more in the long run if you go this route. Here are reasons why you should call a mold remediation expert instead of trying to do it on your own.
1. It Can Be Dangerous
While toxic mold is not very common, it can grow in your home. There is a proper way that it should be dealt with, and most people do not have the right safety equipment. Your safest option is to call an environmental hygienist to come do the mold testing for you instead of buying your own mold kit and doing it yourself.
2. There is a High Chance of Contamination
These kits have been in places other than your home and may possibly be contaminated by the time they get to you. The fact of the matter is though that these tests will likely always be positive. Due to moisture in the air, there are usually trace amount of fungi in your home. These DIY mold kits cannot tell you if you have an actual infestation in your home.
3. They Don’t Give You a Plan
A major reason to have an inspector come to your home to look at the problem is that they can give you a plan. If you do have mold, they are qualified to know how it should be handled. This completely defeats the purpose of doing a kit at home yourself. A remediation expert will work with you to lay out the steps to get rid of the mold and can help you find the source of the problem.
If you think there might be fungus in your home, do not try mold testing by yourself. Always call an experienced inspector to come out and help you through the process.
Handling the Aftermath of a House Fire
Hallway fire damage in a Far North Dallas, TX home
Fire Restoration Process
Standing in front of the scorched structure that used to be your home can be a difficult picture for anyone to envision. However, for those homeowners that are forced to live through this situation, they will likely struggle with how to handle the aftermath of such a disaster. A fire restoration should be a straightforward process, especially for the insured. However, it is a bureaucratic process that likely requires adherence to a few basic protocols.
1. Call Insurance
Most homeowner’s insurance policies include fire insurance, but while the bluntness of the name is helpful, the actual coverage is listed under the peril portion of many plans. Despite the name discrepancy, it is crucial to call your insurance provider before taking any restorative steps. By calling, homeowners can clarify their rights and obligations as well as get the claims process moving.
2. Don’t Touch Anything
Before hiring any fire restoration company or inspecting your belongings, it is necessary for an assessor to walk the property and record any visible damage. You should not complicate this process by removing items from the property. If you want, you can photograph any damaged items and pull together any relevant receipts to show the insurance assessor when they arrive.
3. Hire Mitigation Specialists
If your insurance company recommends or requires mitigation, then you should hire a mitigation specialist to help protect your property. While these professionals may remove debris and water, they likely won’t perform any deep cleaning tasks, like smoke cleaning. These professionals primarily offer board-up, tarping and fencing services to ensure that your property does not sustain any further losses.
4. Discuss Restoration Options
After your property has been assessed, your insurer may suggest a restoration specialist in the Far North Dallas, TX, area. However, you can look for another company, or if the mitigation professional you used belongs to a larger restoration establishment, you may choose them. Discuss your options and try to secure at least a few bids before selecting a service.
While a fire restoration can be straightforward, it does involve paperwork and adherence to protocols. Therefore, you can follow the suggestions above to ensure a smooth recovery and claims process.
Keep Your Backup Generator Ready To Go
An emergency generator is a vital piece of equipment for many businesses.
Keep Your Backup Generator Ready To Go
If your business has ever been affected by a power outage, you know the value of having an electrical generator on the premises. This standalone equipment can keep your business in operation when there's no power available from local power grids. During an outage, the machine may be used to keep your computer running or to ensure that life-support systems don't glitch. Once in a while, however, that backup machinery may need some care of its own.
Protect your machinery from common generator problems by scheduling regular inspections from experienced storm damage remediation professionals. Some of the areas that require ongoing maintenance include
- Battery charger
- Control panel
- Cooling and exhaust systems
- Fuel system
- Lubrication system
- Main assembly and frame
- Voltage regulator
These machines don't actually create electricity; instead, they convert one type of energy into electricity. This is accomplished in a variety of ways, but most often involving the principle of electromagnetic induction. You might think of this process as a reverse-engineered electrical motor or as an electromagnet. Either way, there are many moving parts that require consistent attention to function dependably.
One of the first things you can do to keep your generator running properly is to make sure you're using the right type of fuel. There are several options for modern machines, from natural gas and propane to diesel fuel. Some equipment can make use of two types of fuel, both gasoline and diesel. If you plan to store fuel on your property, make sure you have experts inspect the storage systems when they inspect the machine itself.
When you contact Far North Dallas, TX, emergency remediation experts to inspect your backup equipment, there are several things the professional will look for:
- Worn parts
- High or low fluid levels
- Dirty battery connections
- Load irregularities
- Control panel problems
- Dirty air and fuel filters
- Lack of lubrication
An emergency generator is a vital piece of equipment for many businesses. Keep yours safe with the proper maintenance and expert attention.
How to Deal with Weather-Related Flight Cancelations
Three Simple Tips For Dealing With Canceled Flight Due To Bad Weather
With the modern convenience of around-the-globe travel, people young and old enjoy flights year-round to some of the world’s most exciting destinations. But one thing all air-travel customers have in common is the fear of a canceled flight due to bad weather. While it can happen to anyone, a flight cancelation can be both inconvenient and stressful to the average airplane passenger. If you find yourself in this common travel predicament, consider these three tips for dealing with your weather delay.
1. Contact the Airline
Once you receive word that your flight has been cancelled, you will likely be instructed to get in a line to reserve further travel arrangements. As the masses throng to the airline service desk, take out your cell phone and contact the airline directly. A customer service rep should be able to look-up the current cancelation status of your trip and assist you in rebooking immediately. When calling a commercial airline, have the following information readily available to speed up the process:
• Your personal information
• Flight itinerary including flight number
• Credit card number used to book the flight
2. Make Hotel Reservations
Now that you are sure you have a canceled flight on your hands, assess how long you are willing to sit at the airport. If you have to wait over 12 hours for weather conditions to improve or for alternate travel arrangements to take place, you may want to consider booking a hotel room. Adding exhaustion to an already stressful travel day is a recipe for disaster. Instead, stay the night in a local Dallas, TX, hotel to feel refreshed when flights do become available again.
3. Be Polite
Finally, in all of the chaos of traveling and gathering storm tips don’t forget that at the end of the day there is only so much people can do in the case of inclement weather. It is likely the airlines are just as frazzled by the delays as the many stranded passengers. Good manners may go a long way in getting what you want in all of the disorder.
When facing a weather-related canceled flight stay calm. Follow these three simple tips to get you back on your way as soon as possible.
The Fundamentals of Fire Sprinkler Maintenance
A fire sprinkler system is a critical safety feature in any building
Fire sprinkler maintenance is important for several reasons. A commercial property will need a functional sprinkler system in the event of a fire, and accidental activations can cause water damage at a structure in Far North Dallas, TX. Learn more about the basics of maintaining a sprinkler system to ensure that fire sprinklers will be ready to suppress a fire and will not cause unnecessary damage.
Schedule Regular Inspections
Fire suppression systems should be inspected at least once a year. These inspections should account for every aspect of the system and identify defects and damage. Here are a few of the most important components to check:
• Flow switch or detector
• Tamper switches
• Water volume
It is advisable to have an inspection performed by the company that installed the system or another certified service. Sprinkler maintenance specialists will be able to ensure that a fire suppression system will function as intended and prevent accidental activations.
Evaluate System Design
Commercial sprinkler systems are set up to correspond to the use patterns and fire risks of a structure. It may be necessary to update the sprinkler system if a new tenant moves in or the purpose of a space changes. Property owners and managers should be sure to factor in flammable components and occupancy.
Investigate Accidental Activation
Building owners and managers should not disregard an accidental activation. There are several common reasons that this malfunction may occur:
Sprinkler specialists can resolve the issue and ensure that fire sprinklers will work when needed and not activate unnecessarily. Whenever sprinklers activate accidentally or intentionally, mitigation and restoration specialists can restore any water damage or combined water and fire damage that results.
A fire sprinkler system is a critical safety feature in any building. Property owners and managers should schedule regular sprinkler maintenance to ensure that fire suppression equipment is functional.
How To Avoid Mold After a Roof Leak
A leak that goes unnoticed initially is enough to cause this problem, call SERVPRO for specialized help.
Four Steps To Prevent Mold After A Roof Leak
It may take some time for a roof leak to become apparent, but mold growth may begin in as little as 24 to 48 hours. Many types of fungi, including black mold, can thrive in a leaky building. Owners or managers should take these four steps to try to prevent mold from forming.
1. Mitigate Damage
It is important to limit damage until a leak can be fixed. A building owner or manager can have a roofing company or damage mitigation service tarp over a leaky roof.
2. Fix the Leak
Mitigation is an effective short-term fix, but it is crucial to repair a leak as soon as possible to limit the amount of damage. Damage restoration or mold remediation can only take place after the leak has stopped, as the problem will otherwise worsen or reoccur.
3. Tear Out Materials
As soon as a leak is fixed, water damage mitigation and restoration professionals can determine which building materials need to be torn out and replaced. Drywall or insulation saturated with contaminated water can pose a heightened mold risk and must be removed. The damaged area may also require cleaning and disinfection to prevent the growth of black mold.
4. Promote Drying
Mitigation and restoration experts will recommend ways to promote drying. Increasing ventilation and running a dehumidifier can speed up drying times and maintain low moisture levels. Restoration can proceed as soon as the area is completely dry.
A building owner or manager may detect a roof leak sooner if he or she inspects the condition of roofing after a major storm or high winds in Dallas, TX. A ceiling leak, signs of black mold or other fungus growth might otherwise be the first indications of roof damage. Owners and managers should rely on commercial roofers and water damage mitigation and restoration professionals who also specialize in mold remediation.
How Professionals Can Restore Your Damaged Documents
Flooded office building in Dallas,TX
Significant damage can occur following a flood or fire in your Dallas, TX, office building. Not only do you have to worry about structural issues and potential concerns with electronics, but you also have to think about sensitive documents and paperwork. You can’t afford to lose these items. Fortunately, document restoration is possible when you partner with a team of professionals.
A team of document restoration professionals will handle your books, papers, files, and other important items with care and concern. The technicians will use the following approach to ensure they make every effort to save your materials:
- They’ll do the restoration work at a secure, offsite facility.
- They’ll use the latest technological advances and techniques.
- They’ll work on virtually any type of document.
- They’ll dry, clean, and disinfect the affected documents.
Document drying is a delicate process, which is why you don’t want just anyone handling your items. A professional team will use a state-of-the-art vacuum freeze-drying technique that will remove moisture from the materials while maintaining the integrity of the paper. The company will use the highest-quality equipment, which they also use on valuable, vital documents in organizations and agencies around the country.
What They Can Salvage
One of the main reasons you should enlist the expertise of a restoration company, such as SERVPRO, is that it can successfully take care of a wide range of documents and materials. No matter what line of work you’re in or what documents a disaster has damaged or altered, you can count on these professionals to help. You could have content such as books, x-rays, blueprints, parchment, or maps, and the team should be able to get these items back to you in excellent shape. Even better, SERVPRO can keep costs lower than other commercial companies.
When it comes to document restoration, SERVPRO should be your go-to choice for a solution to your concerns. This company has what it takes to preserve your precious content.
Salvaging Your Home’s Building Materials After Sustaining Water Damage
Hardwood floor restored after a water damage in Far North Dallas, TX.
When your home in Far North Dallas,TX, suffers a blow from water damage due to a faulty water supply line, a pipe burst, or failed water heater time is of the essence. Of course you want to rescue and salvage any of your personal belongings, furnishings and floor coverings from further damage by immediately extracting the water and drying things out. But that is really just scratching the surface of the cleanup job.
More Than Skin Deep
Buried behind and beneath the water saturated carpets and curtains are some potentially bigger concerns. Hidden water can wick up or seep down - depending on which floor of your home experienced the flooding - into the sheetrock, studs, joists, subfloor and insulation that give your home its structure. Swelling wood and disintegrating sheetrock are no laughing matter and require as much attention to water removal and drying out as your oriental rug.
Cabinetry in your kitchen, bathroom or den can also absorb water, which can result in warping and loosening of veneers from swelling wood. Laminate-coated pressboard is a particular problem as it can literally flake apart if it sits in water long enough. Removing water completely and immediately is critical.
Floors and Walls
Subfloor will most likely need to be replaced. Real wood studs and joists can be saved if dried out completely and quickly. The greenboard in a shower or bath surround is made to handle water in case of a leak but even standard sheetrock can be salvaged if water saturation is mitigated soon enough and it is properly dried out.
Beyond following up with a water pipe repair, understanding how to go about extracting the water, drying out the swelling wood and other building materials, and making decisions about what can be saved and what must be replaced is best done by a professional water damage restoration company in Far North Dallas, TX. They can help with dehumidification, odor and bacteria removal as well. Their training and knowledge is key to having a water damage and black mold-free home.
Does Rental Insurance Cover Mold Damage?
Mold on corner of a wall in a Far North Dallas, TX home.
On the surface, this seems like a fair question. A closer look, however, shows that it is a bit misleading. The question suggests that the tenant's rental insurance pays to remediate mold damage. The truth is that, in many cases, the landlord is responsible.
Renter’s Face Several Possible Mold Scenarios
All scenarios require immediate notification of the landlord about the mold problem. They also involve asking the insurance company about coverage.
Potential scenarios are:
- The mold is a direct result of a structural or plumbing problem. That moldy wet spot on the ceiling is not the tenant's responsibility. Neither is the mold under the leaky sink.
- The common areas like hallways, stairwells and basement storage areas are moldy. These are not the tenant’s responsibility.
- The moisture and mold come from overflows caused by the tenant. These would include sink overflows or floods caused by washing machine failures. Mold removal is likely the tenant’s responsibility. Rental insurance should cover the expense.
- Moisture and mold result from sewer backups and floods originating outdoors. These should not be the tenant’s responsibility.
- The bathroom has mold and mildew. Bathrooms are inherently moist. One should expect to find mold and mildew there. It is the tenant’s responsibility to keep those areas clear of mold and mildew. If the problem is severe, it may end up being the tenant’s responsibility to remediate the mold and mildew.
- Mold is growing on interior surfaces with no known source of moisture. It may be that the humidity level of the space is high enough to support mold growth. Mold growing out in the open is easy to spot and remove. Behind appliances and above drop-ceilings, it can quickly grow out of control. This should not be the tenant's responsibility.
Mold in Far North Dallas, TX, calls for the help of mold remediation specialists. They will work with the rental insurance company and get the job done. In the end, it will be “Like it never even happened.”
What You Need To Know About Document Restoration With SERVPRO
If a client has suffered damage to his or her Far North Dallas, TX, home, it can require quite a bit of restoration. Not only will the structure of the house need work, but the property inside will need to be repaired or replaced as well. Paper items are often considered lost once they’ve been damaged, but this is not always the case. Here are a few things you should know about the restoration process.
1. When Do You Need Document Restoration?
Clients will most likely need this service when there has been some kind of water damage. In the case of a burst pipe, flood or a fire that involved using a hose, there will be quite a bit of water in the home. If important or sentimentally valuable documents have gotten wet, your client will likely want to have them restored if it is possible.
2. How Is Restoration Done?
Because paper documents are very porous, they absorb water quickly. SERVPRO uses a freeze-drying process during document restoration that removes the water and returns the document to its previous state. Because water can carry contaminants such as pesticides, harmful chemicals, bacteria, and viruses, it is important to have your items sterilized as well. During restoration, a gamma irradiation process will be used to clean and disinfect any documents that have been in contact with potentially contaminated water.
3. What Related Services Are Offered?
The experience of nearly losing their important documents can be upsetting to your clients. During the document restoration process, SERVPRO offers a digitizing service that can bring them peace of mind. Creating digital copies of their documents is a great way to prevent any potential losses in the future. It can also be convenient for them to have access to all of their important items in one place.
Document drying can be an incredibly useful service to those who need water damage restoration. It can save important documents and keep your client’s from going through the stressful process of replacing them.