The Durability of Solar Panels During a Storm
Solar panel in a Buckingham, FL roof house
When the next big storm sweeps into Buckingham,FL, you may wonder about the durability of your newly-installed solar technology. Will they stand up to high winds, heavy rains and hail? Will your investment escape without panel damage? just how rigorously has solar technology been tested to endure harsh storms? These are good questions to ask as solar farms and household solar projects have increased throughout the country. The encouraging news is that solar engineers have always known that materials that spend their lifetime exposed to the elements must be tough. In fact, the National Renewal Energy Laboratory has long worked with the Department of Energy to strengthen and test solar panels.
The Findings of Durability in Solar Technology
Because widespread panel damage in a storm would be undesirable, the solar industry had developed standardized tests to measure durability. The goal of the tests is to assure that solar panels can stand up to extreme weather conditions and to increase consumer confidence in solar products. Weather conditions tested include the following:
- High and low temperatures
- Ultraviolet radiation
- High winds
In one recent severe hailstorm in Colorado, the NREL found only one panel damaged out of 3,000. That one panel was subjected to numerous hits of hail in the same exact spot, resulting in small cracks in the glass.
The Takeaway on Panel Durability
Based on a long track record, and on vigorous testing, your solar investment is likely to fare well in most weather events. Even so, storms in Buckingham,FL, can pack a wallop and inflict roof damage without advance notice. This can create a pathway for moisture to enter a home and impact ceilings and walls and may necessitate the services of a storm remediation service.
Advancements in materials and engineering cannot eliminate all panel damage on your solar installation, but they make it unlikely. This allows you to experience the next big storm with confidence and peace of mind.
Why a Generator Is a Good Business Investment
Purchasing backup generators, while it may seem expensive, could keep your doors open for business
Here are Three Things To Know About Generator Power
As a business owner in Charleston Park,FL, you want to protect your property and company. It makes sense to invest in equipment that could keep it open despite electrical outages or professional storm damage clean up. The weather is not in your control, but having a backup plan for emergencies is. Purchasing backup generators, while it may seem expensive, could keep your doors open for business. Here are three things to know about generator power.
1. They Are Multipurpose Items
Many places cannot function without electricity. Registers, computer programs and communication connections often run through internet and electrical lines. Without those, a business could be closed; therefore, it's important to remember that generators offer several solutions when inclement weather impact the power grid. They perform the following jobs:
- Run the air units
- Allow for financial transactions
- Maintain refrigerated cases
- Prevent products from receiving heat or humidity damage
2. They Are Built To Last
Generators use a stored form of energy (natural gas, solar or diesel) to provide power when the electricity goes out. Worried one will wear out quickly? Many of these products last for up to 3,000 hours. Usually, you could keep a generator running during store hours and turn it off at night. Let's assume you run it 10 hours a day for five days. Under those circumstances, you'd accrue 50 hours in a week. At that rate, a replacement wouldn't be necessary any time soon. With some luck, you can get 20-30 years from it.
3. They Must Be Maintained
Like any other equipment you own, you can help avoid generator problems by keeping your device cleaned and inspected regularly. At least once a year, look at the parts. Replace anything corroding or showing fraying. In addition, inspect filters and oil, changing them if necessary. The battery needs to be checked as well.
Put together an emergency plan. What would your company do if the power goes out? Generator power could offer your business a layer of protection.
3 Ways to Prevent a Toilet Overflow
Flushing toilet paper down the toilet can contribute to or cause a clog
3 Ways to Prevent a Toilet Overflow
If you own a home, then you will likely encounter a variety of challenges. One of these is an overflowing toilet. This is not an uncommon problem, but it can be a frustrating one. If sewage cleaning is not done quickly, you can end up with costly water damage, especially if it is reoccurring. If the toilet in your Lehigh Acres,FL, home overflows when you take a shower, the following are a few methods that may help.
1. Clean the Pipes
A toilet overflow during a shower is often a sign of a clog. If this is the case, then cleaning the pipes may remove the problem. You can try to do this with a chemical cleaner, but if this does not work, then you may need to physically unclog it. This can be done with a plumbing snake, a flexible wire that you push through the drain.
2. Check for Damage
If you have cleaned the pipes but are still experiencing backup or overflow, then you may be dealing with damage instead of a clogged pipe. If your plumbing system is old, then it can cause pipes to collapse or break, which means the water cannot properly drain. Overgrown tree roots can contribute to this as well. Performing regular maintenance will reduce the likelihood of this.
3. Be Careful What You Flush Down the Drain
Once the issue has been fixed and sewage cleaning has been done, you should take certain steps to prevent it from happening again. While you cannot control everything, one thing that can help is to be careful what you put down the drain. Flushing paper towels or other products down the toilet or pouring grease or food down the sink can contribute to or cause a clog.
If you have experienced an overflow and need sewage cleaning, you should have it done as soon as possible. A cleanup and restoration company can remove the water, sanitize the area and repair any damage that has been done.
How to Remove Lint From a Dryer Exhaust to Prevent a Fire
Clean your lint trap after every use
Three Types Of Lint Cleaning
If you’ve noticed that your dryer is taking longer to dry your clothes, the first thing you should look at is the lint filter. If you’ve never cleaned it, that’s bad, but even if you have, you still need to perform a deeper clean occasionally. A number of homes in Fort Myers, FL, have experienced a lint fire, yet preventing them is wonderfully easy. There are three general types of lint cleaning:
- A basic cleaning performed before every use.
- A vacuum clean, done after a few loads.
- Rinsing the filter, done every few months.
The Basic Clean
Hopefully, you’ve been doing this every time you use the dryer. Locate the screen, which is typically either always visible from the front of the unit or visible immediately after opening the door. Gently pull it out; if you have to use a lot of force, something’s wrong. Make sure not to bend the screen. Simply remove the visible lint from the screen and replace it – and you’re done! This is the most effective method to prevent a lint fire.
The Vacuum Trick
Some lint gets through the screen, and fibers also tend to stick to it that aren’t easy to remove by hand. Pull out the screen and vacuum it. Vacuum in the area where the screen goes as far as the hose will reach to help prevent a dryer fire.
Rinsing the Filter
Eventually, residue, both visible and invisible, builds up on the screen, reducing air flow and dryer performance. No problem! Remove the screen and rinse it under warm water. You can use soap if necessary. This is especially important if you use dryer sheets.
If you have a dryer fire in Fort Myers, FL, you’ll probably need an experienced fire damage cleanup company to deal with the aftermath. Almost 3,000 dryer fires are reported every year, so it’s a much more common problem than most people realize. But if you keep the filter clean, you can avoid a lint fire and all the attendant fire damage.
How to Find out If You Have Mold in Your Home
Mold found behind a drywall in a Fort Myers Beach, FL home
Mold has a familiar, musty smell just about everyone has come into contact with at some point. It is also widely known that having mold growth and too many mold spores in the air is not a good sign and must be taken care of quickly to ensure your home has acceptable indoor air quality and that the structural integrity of the house is not at risk.
Common Mold Growth Areas
If you see visible mold, then your job is easy and it’s time to clean it up, ideally using a professional mold remediation company to ensure the spores are completely removed and the damage causing the moisture problem is repaired for good.
Areas to Check:
- Cracked walls, floors, ceilings
- Roof, especially around the chimney
- Poor drainage areas around the outside of the home
- Old window frames
If you do not see any mold but smell something, or notice some parts of the home are more humid than they should be, an indoor environmental specialist can do a formal inspection to better determine the source of the issue and how widespread the damage is. Again, if you already see mold, an inspection is probably not needed, as you already know where the mold is and finding out what type it is, isn’t necessary. Just be sure not to spend too much time in that area and buying a quality HEPA air filter in the meantime is recommended to keep the air quality safe.
You can buy a home mold test kit and do the check yourself, but these are not always accurate and may be a waste of money. All homes have some levels of mold, and a professional may be needed to interpret the results to determine if your home has higher than average levels. The EPA recommends that an indoor environmental specialist complete the testing, who understands how to properly sample and interpret results using methods set by the American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA) or other professional organization.
When to Use an Environmental Specialist
The time to hire an indoor environmental specialist for your home in Fort Myers Beach,FL, is when you cannot see mold growing, but you can smell it. This is also necessary if you’ve had flooding in the house or plumbing issues and you think there might be mold inside the walls. Ensure your home’s safety and structural integrity and rest assured that your mold problems will soon be a thing of the past.
Tips For Stopping a Running Toilet
Tips For Stopping a Running Toilet
Water costs money, so when the bathroom toilets won't stop flushing, money is going down the drain too. In business, every penny is important; therefore, take some time to repair the hardware. Should you experience a toilet overflow, call in a water restoration company in Sanibel, FL, to evaluate any property damage. In the meantime, here are some tips for stopping the constantly running commode.
Before you try to stop a toilet, take a few minutes to gather some needed materials. You should have these common items handy:
- Flat-head screwdriver
Stop the Water
You don't want a toilet overflow, so cutting off the water supply is important. Locate the flushometer on the side, where you'll see a spot for a screwdriver. Grab the flat-head and turn the slot.
Fix a Manual Device
Using the wrench, remove the top from the flushometer. Next, remove the flange cover. You'll see the round object known as a gasket. You might see a small gap on it, referred to as the weep hole. The gasket, including the tiny spot, needs cleaning. Over time, sediment can accrue, preventing proper function. Sometimes removing the gunk can get it back in working order. Just be careful. You don't want to expand or damage the weep hole. Put it all back together, and hopefully, you've avoided a toilet flood.
Fix an Automatic Device
Locate the button you use to flush the toilet. Hold it down for a bit. If you hear a double-clicking noise, you'll need to inspect the diaphragm kit. This step requires removing the flushometer's lid. Take a good look to see if it's dirty. If so, clean it off and see if that fixes the problem. If that doesn't work, consider buying a new part. Another possibility is that the solenoid needs attention. Look over its parts carefully. You may need to move pieces around or find a replacement.
Don't let the water bill rise from a long-running toilet. Try to fix the problem before it becomes a toilet overflow. With the proper tools, you may just get it working properly on your own.
What Not to Do After a Flood
Mold caused by storm in a Pine Manor, FL home
Things You Should Avoid When Cleaning Up Flood
Flood damage in your home can be devastating, and you may be tempted to begin cleaning up immediately. It’s important to first know where the flood water came from and whether it was clean enough to allow you to safely clean the area. If you already smell mold, and you don’t know how long the area has been wet, it is often recommended that you consult a professional flood remediation company. They will be able to determine what cleanup you can do safely, and what would be more easily and more safely handled using professional equipment.
If you decide to clean up the flood yourself, here are a few things you should avoid.
Do Not Clean Without Protective Clothing
Especially when you are unsure of the status of electricity, it is vital that you wear high rubber boots. They will protect you from unknown toxins in the flood water, but they will also protect you from potential electric shocks.
Rubber gloves may also be necessary to avoid contact with contaminated items and water in the flooded home. If the water is from a natural or city flood, infection could occur after a few hours of exposure, even just with your hands or face. As well, if there are toxins in the air, gas masks or dust masks may also be needed.
Do Not Approach Standing Water
Again, with the risk of electric shock, standing water could be charged from downed power lines or underground lines.
Do Not Ignore Mold
If the flood water in your home in Pine Manor,FL, has enjoyed warm temperatures and humidity for a few days, mold has likely been added to the water damage. The longer the home stays wet, the more the mold will grow and cause further damages to structural integrity. It is best to utilize professional mold cleaning services for widespread mold problems, to ensure your home is fully decontaminated and put back to safe working order for you and your family.
What To Do if Your Toilet Overflows
Leaking toilet in a McGregor, FL home
It is always upsetting when your home in Mcgregor,FL, is dealing with sewer damage. Many homeowners panic when their toilet overflows and are unsure of what to do after their bathroom floods. The following tips will help you figure out what to do with a flooded toilet.
Contain the Leak
Depending on the source of the flooded toilet, it is important to try and stop more water from leaking. The water supply should be immediately turned off; the knob to shut the water supply off is usually positioned below the tank and near the base of the toilet. A plunger or toilet auger can help clear any clogs that may be causing the overflow. Towels placed around the toilet will help stop the water from spreading and contain what has leaked out. A plumber may need to be called.
Water that has leaked from a toilet has the potential to be grossly contaminated; if there is fecal material or sewage present than it would be known as Category 3 water damage, or black water. This is the most severe water damage category and it is a biohazard that can cause sickness. Black water must be handled carefully, with full protective clothing and gloves. A sewage company should be contacted as soon as possible. They can help to
Reasons For Toilet Overflow
There are numerous reasons that can cause a toilet to overflow. A few of the more common causes are:
- Blocked drain pipe, which can happen with excess toilet paper or a foreign object being flushed.
- Sewer lines, which is when the main sewer line gets blocked or damaged.
- Septic system problems, such as a tank that is too full. This can cause sewer damage.
If your home has been subject to sewer damage, water damage restoration experts are available to help. They can clean and restore your bathroom back to normal quickly and easily.
3 Clever Substitutes for Traditional Sand Bags
3 Clever Substitutes for Traditional Sand Bags
Worried about flood damage to your business when a storm starts brewing in Whiskey Creek,FL? Sand bags may be the classic defense against rising waters but modern and more efficient methods are making its way onto the flood protection scene. While the ubiquitous sand bag continues to hold its own due to its low-tech and accessible nature, here are several options to consider that may not be as laborious, expensive or detrimental to the environment:
1. Go Eco-Friendly with Biodegradable Flood Bags
Weighing in at just over one pound per sack, this reinvented sand bag is water activated and is a breeze to set up. Flood bags are extremely effective because of their super absorbent filling that soaks up and gels water upon contact. These bags can draw in up to 4 gallons of water each and when tightly stacked create a waterproof seal to protect your establishment.
2. Craft a Shield with Deployable Flood Barriers
Portable flood dams are barriers constructed with marine grade materials, stainless steel, aluminum and reinforced PVC. Contrary to sand bags, which can be very labor intensive to fill and set up, a team of 10 people working for an hour can assemble up to 150 feet of these portable dams.
3. Fight Water with Water with Diversion Tubes
These heavy duty PVC tubes create a waterproof obstruction that can be used to divert flood water and protect your business from water damage. The tubes, which are designed to be filled with water, are 10 times faster to pack than your average sand bag which makes for a handy solution in a pinch.
It is also advisable to have a reputable flood remediation company on standby for damage control in the event that the precautions taken to avoid storm damage are insufficient. Prevention is certainly better than cure and being prepared with the tools you need to protect and repair your business will see you through any patch of rough weather.
Creating an Emergency Action Plan for Your Business Can Be a Lifesaver
Create an emergency action plan for your business
Unexpected events are a frequent occurrence in life, but businesses seem to get more than their share. They are so common that, in a given year, emergency expenses usually average out and can be considered a normal cost of doing business. However, some emergencies are more extreme, and having a contingency plan can help mitigate the severity of the damages to both your bottom line and the health and welfare of your employees.
Planning Always Pays Off
Regardless of the size of your business, you should have an evacuation plan in place for common hazards. The plans for Tice, FL, should be specific enough to address events such as:
- Severe weather
- An active shooter
However, an effective plan should also have built-in flexibility to handle circumstances beyond the foreseeable. Planning not only pays off directly in these situations; it keeps employees and management aware that your operation is well-organized and cares about the people there.
Emergency Action Plans
Many businesses covered by OSHA regulations require an emergency action plan (EAP), particularly if the organization has more than 10 employees. This is a well-developed, written contingency plan that employees can use to respond effectively during emergencies. The plan should include:
- How and when to report emergencies
- Evacuation procedures and escape routes
- Fight, flee or shelter in place policies
- Training procedures, especially for employees who run critical operations or who stay to respond to emergencies
- Names or job titles of specific employees who perform rescue or fire-fighting duties
Creating an EAP contingency plan in Tice, FL, isn’t just for large employers; it’s beneficial for everyone and can even help reduce liability by showing a good-faith effort to do everything possible in an emergency. With adequate training and a solid EAP, you can help avoid injuries and reduce clean-up and restoration costs from fire and water damage. Small and medium-sized businesses can usually come up with a successful plan in as little as 10 or 15 minutes, so it’s well worth your time to address this in advance.