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How to Prepare a Fire Escape Plan

1/7/2021 (Permalink)

Fire Drill words in 3d Having a drill at least every six months should be enough

Steps In Creating A Fire Escape Plan For Your Office

Nobody wants to think about a fire occurring in their Lehigh Acres, FL, building. However, it is better to be prepared for any type of emergency. Using the following steps to create a fire escape plan for the office is one way to do this.

1. Locate All Exits
When making your emergency escape plan, you should know where every exit in the building is located. This should include all doors as well as many of the windows. Windows on higher floors are often unsafe for this purpose, but the second floor may be close enough to the ground that the windows are a suitable option.

2. Create Multiple Escape Routes
During a fire, you may not be able to exit the building using the path that you would usually take. Create at least two routes to every exit. This will make it easier for you to get out of the building more quickly and safely.

3. Put Up Maps of the Building
It is particularly useful to have maps of the building on each floor if you often have visitors who do not work there. However, these will also be helpful to those who are more familiar with the layout. It can help you to orient yourself during an emergency if you are thinking less clearly.

4. Have Practice Fire Drills
A fire escape plan will not do much good if you do not practice it regularly. In most cases, having a drill at least every six months should be enough. These should be as realistic as possible so everyone is familiar with the procedure if there is a real emergency. Create a designated meetup area to ensure everyone makes it safely out of the building.
Whether the fire is small or is severe enough to need fire damage remediation services, it is good to be on the safe side. Having a fire escape plan is essential to keeping both you and other workers prepared.

3 Signs Your Water Heater Needs a Flush

1/7/2021 (Permalink)

Man's hands unscrewing a screw-nut on a water heater with a wrench on a boiler A water heater flush can help prevent such incidents

3 Signs Your Water Heater Needs a Flush

The water that flows through your house is generally not pure and distilled. Instead, it usually contains minerals like potassium, magnesium, and calcium. If it is hard, meaning its mineral content is higher than normal, it can cause various problems like forming deposits in pipes, leading to restricted flow and corrosion. If you have a storage-tank water heater, one potential issue that may arise is sediment buildup in the bottom of it, formed from the settling of the heavier materials in the water. This accumulation may lead to future difficulties like decreased efficiency, rust contamination, and even leaks that may result in a need for a professional cleanup and restoration company in Charleston Park, FL. The heaters may even explode in some cases. A water heater flush can help prevent such incidents. There are certain signs that indicate yours needs to be flushed.

1. Strange Noises
One of the biggest indicators it's time for a flush is noise coming from the water heater. These sounds may be caused by sediment hitting the tank's sides as it heats up or by the trapping of water beneath the particles. Some noises you should listen for are:

  • Rumbling
  • Banging
  • Popping

2. Longer Than Normal Heating Times
The presence of sediment forces the heater to work harder, possibly lengthening the time it takes to warm the tank of water. This is because it must heat the buildup as well as the liquid. Eventually, hot water production may stop completely if the sedimentation is not dealt with.

3. Funky Smells
The accumulation of minerals also serves as a breeding ground for bacteria. These microbes often produce sulfides that emit a scent akin to that of rotten eggs. Note that such a smell may also be from sulfides already naturally in the water.
It is a good idea to have your water heater flushed regularly. This can help cut off future trouble and save you time, money, and stress.

3 Ways To Use Landscaping To Protect Your Home

1/7/2021 (Permalink)

Garden flowers in rain. Summer flower background. Natural backgrounds Rain gardens provide a place for water to pool during a downpour

Three Ways You Can Use Landscape To Protect Your Home

Strategic use of your landscaping is one of the best ways to mitigate outside flooding, protecting your property against soil erosion and water damage

1. Utilize Swales
A swale is a depression in your landscape used to redirect rain drainage. Swales can be natural or manmade. You can get the most out of your swales by using rocks to line the lowest point and planting vegetation with deep roots on the slopes. These tactics will slow the path of the water to the drain. However, make sure that your swales direct the water to a place where it can safely dissipate, such as a dry well, or a garden bed with good drainage. Your swale should not drain straight off your property.

2. Drain Driveways Effectively
Rain storm runoff from driveways is a major contributor to outside flooding. Mitigate this issue by adding drainage to the sides of your paved driveway. An even more effective solution is to use gravel, grass, or spaced paving instead of an asphalt or concrete pad for your driveway because the porous nature of these materials will decrease the amount of runoff. Talk to a contractor in Buckingham, FL, about the best driveway options for your property.

3. Build a Rain Garden
Rain gardens provide a place for water to pool during a downpour, helping to keep it away from your home where it can cause water damage that may need professional water mitigation. Locate plants with a high tolerance for wet soil in the center of the garden. A typical rain garden requires 50 to 100 square feet of space, but even small gardens are useful.
Utilizing the landscaping around your home to reduce outside flooding is one of the best methods you have for preventing water damage to your home. Consider incorporating these three techniques into your next landscaping project.

How To Flush a Hot Water Heater

12/22/2020 (Permalink)

Hand attaches hose to a home water heater to perform maintenance Flushing a water heater in Whiskey Creek, FL

The Following Simple Five-Step Task Can Save You Time And Money

When was the last time that you completed maintenance on your hot water heater or had it inspected? These appliances are intended to work for ten years or more, but if you want to extend the life of your system, it's best to flush it annually of sediment that builds up inside.

1. Power Disconnection
You need to cut power to the water heater. If it's electric, you can flip a breaker. For gas water heaters, extinguish the pilot light.

2. Drainage Area Preparation
Connect a hose to the drainage valve and direct it to a drain that can handle the sediment and warm water flushed from the tank. Wearing heavy gloves can protect your hands from the hot valves and water.

3. Drainage Process
Once the open drainage valve has run a few minutes, also open the hot water faucet in your kitchen. The tank will drain better this way. After the water empties from the tank for a few minutes, shut off the water intake valve to slow and then stop the flow. Turn the water supply back on and repeat the process for a second water heater flush.

4. Refill Process
After the sediment and water has emptied out, shut the drain valve off and open the water intake valve to fill the tank up again. The kitchen faucet should remain open. Water may come slowly or with a lot of air as the tank refills. The tank is full once the water flows smoothly.

5. Power Restoration
It isn't safe to turn the power back on until the tank is completely full. Otherwise, the heating element or tank can be damaged. Lastly, close the kitchen faucet.
If you know that your system is leaking, it may be best to call a water damage restoration professional in Whiskey Creek, FL, to assess the area around your appliance and ensure there is no damage.
Regular maintenance of your water heater can help extend its life, saving you money on costly repairs.

4 Air Filtration Devices That Filter Mold Spores

12/22/2020 (Permalink)

Air filter for HVAC system - filtration concept If you are looking for an air purifier that filters out mold spores, the best type to buy is a HEPA purifier

Here Are Some Of The Top-Rated Air Purifiers

Many types of air filtration systems are available on the market. If you are looking for an air purifier that filters out mold spores, the best type to buy is a HEPA purifier. These models come with a true HEPA filter, which removes 99.97% of all particles that are 0.3 microns or larger in size.
Here are some of the top-rated air purifiers available using these filters:

1. Oransi OV200
This model incorporates a pre-filter along with a HEPA filter to remove:

  • Bacteria
  • Pet dander
  • Pollen
  • Dust
  • Mold spores

It also contains an activated carbon filter to remove gases and light odors. The purifier is easy to set up and operate and has a modern design. It is capable of cleaning a room around 320-400 square feet.

2. BlueAir HEPASilent450E (403)
This purifier uses electrostatic technology with a HEPA filter for air filtration. It has a filter replacement indicator and digital display. This model is easy to set up by simply unpacking it and plugging it in. It is rated for cleaning a room up to about 365 square feet.

3. Oransi Max
This model uses a pre-filter and HEPA filter along with an activated carbon filter. It comes with a supply of replacement filters that can last up to a year under normal conditions. It is quieter than many other HEPA purifiers and is easy to use. It also features an air-quality sensor. Tests show that the Oransi Max can clean a room up to 600 square feet.

4. Austin Air Healthmate 450
This purifier also uses a pre-filter, HEPA filter and activated carbon filter. The pre-filter is washable. This model is on casters, so it is easy to move around the house as needed. It can clean rooms up to 400 square feet.
If you are working with professional mold remediation specialists to clean your home in Mcgregor, FL, you can ask a team member to help you find the best air filtration system for your residence.

3 Tips For Preventing Mold Growth In Your Building

12/17/2020 (Permalink)

Mold found behind drywall Mold found behind drywall in Fort Myers, FL

3 Tips For Preventing Mold Growth In Your Building

Mold growth is one of those issues you never want to encounter in your building. Once mold begins to grow and spread, remediation can be costly and time-consuming. Regular inspection and maintenance, combined with timely water cleanup, are the keys to effective mold prevention.

1. Understand How Mold Grows
The air inside your Fort Myers, FL, building is filled with tiny mold spores. These spores are relatively harmless and can remain dormant for years. They don’t begin to grow into mold unless and until they land on a moisture source where they can feed. Mold can feed on most surfaces, such as wood, drywall, carpet, or paper. Since food sources are plentiful, moisture is the true critical element that triggers mold growth. Mold will continue to feed, grow, and spread as long as the moisture source is available.

2. Prevent Excess Moisture
Consequently, the most effective mold prevention tactic is to avoid supplying mold spores with a moisture source. Be sure to regularly inspect your building for any signs of leaks or water damage, such as visibly damp areas, peeling paint, water spots or stains, or a musty smell. Pay attention to your utility bills and note any unexplained increase in water use. Keep gutters cleaned out, and conduct regular maintenance checks on your plumbing, electrical, and HVAC systems.

3. Act Quickly to Clean Up Water Damage
Even with diligent maintenance, accidents sometimes happen. Time is the most important factor in preventing mold growth after water damage: Mold spores can begin to grow and multiply within 24-48 hours after the damage occurs. In addition to acting quickly, ensuring a thorough cleanup is also critical to preventing the spread of mold. If remediation efforts are inadequate, trace amounts of moisture could remain. Trace amounts of water are often enough for mold to begin growing.
Investing some time in mold prevention now could save you from spending time and money on mold remediation efforts in the future.

What To Do if the Fire Sprinklers Accidentally Goes Off

12/17/2020 (Permalink)

Active fire sprinkler What to do if your fire sprinkler accidentally goes off

Fire sprinkler systems can be effective ways of putting out a fire and saving your building in Fort Myers, FL, from destruction. However, they do result in some flooding, which is an especially large problem when they go off accidentally.

Here Are Some Steps To Take If This Happens In Your Building

1. Shut Off the Water
To prevent the fire sprinklers from flooding your entire building, quickly go shut off the water main or the main valve for the sprinkler system. Once you do that, you can find and turn off the individual sprinkler system valve so that you can turn the water back on to the rest of the building. You might be required by your fire marshall to evacuate the building or increase fire precautions until you get the system fixed and turned back on, so make sure you talk to your fire department about that.

2. Call Your Insurance Company
The next step is to call your insurance company and explain what happened. They may want to send someone out to look at the damage and talk with you about your options.

3. Call a Remediation Company
Even if you get the water cleaned up from the sprinkler activation, chances are your walls, ceiling and floor will still be damp, making your building a breeding ground for hidden mold. Avoid this by calling a professional water damage remediation company to thoroughly clean and repair everything in the flooded area.

4. Prevent Further Damage
If you had furniture or supplies in the flooded areas and your insurance company says it's okay, go ahead and move those out of the water so that you can begin to dry them off. This will prevent them from being damaged further and will make it easier to clean up the rest of the space.
Water flooding from your building's ceiling when there isn't fire isn't ideal, to say the least. If this does happen to your building, though, make sure you follow these steps so that you can get the damage repaired as quickly as possible.

Different Types of Damage Caused By a Home Fire

12/17/2020 (Permalink)

Roof damaged by fire Home fire in Fort Myers, FL

Different Types of Damage Caused By a Home Fire

For many people, a home fire is among their biggest worries. Even a relatively small fire has the power to do a number upon your home in Fort Myers, FL. As if fire damage is not enough, you could be dealing with water issues as well as the coating of soot throughout the home. Then there is the pervasiveness of smoke odors. In a way, a house is the perfect storm when it comes to widespread damage. Fortunately, there is help to be found. A professional fire mitigation company can handle all of the different types of damage through a variety of methods and specialized equipment.

The Presence of Water Damage
A fire of any size in your home is more often than not going to include some water issues. This, of course, is because water is used to fight fires, whether it is from a home sprinkler system or the fire hose of firefighters. To handle this, a restoration crew will do the following:

  • Remove any standing water
  • Dry out surfaces with fans and air dryers
  • Measure humidity levels
  • Clean walls and other surfaces
  • Look out for mold growth

All of these steps are necessary as part of the fire damage restoration process. The ability to handle the entire job separates the professionals from the non-professionals.

The Presence of Odors
Another common issue after a fire is the underlying smell of smoke. Smoke odors can be hard to remove. Advanced techniques are needed that employ air filtration devices, thermal foggers and ozone machines. These techniques slowly remove that sickening smell from your home. Just wiping down the walls and washing clothes is often not enough to get items clean. All this goes to show that fire damage can be widespread in a home. A professional and experienced restoration crew has a solution for the different types of damage caused by fire.

How To Prevent Rain Damage

11/11/2020 (Permalink)

Rain in the city Heavy rain in Tice, FL

Prevent Water Inundation In Your Building

Rain damage can lead to mold growth and structural damage to your Tice, FL, commercial property. Fortunately, there are numerous precautions you can take to prevent water inundation. 

Regular Maintenance 
Every structure has what is called a building envelope. The envelope is the barrier between the interior of the building and the outdoors. The major parts are the following:

  • Doors 
  • Windows 
  • Roof 
  • Foundation 
  • Walls 

The envelope is your building’s primary protection against water damage. Performing inspections twice a year allows you to catch minor issues before they become major problems. Look for cracks, deteriorating seals, mold growth and other signs of envelope failure. Perform repairs as soon as possible. 

Temporary Precautions 
If very heavy rains are expected, it may be necessary to protect the building envelope against rain damage with nonpermanent fortifications. For large areas, you can install sandbags or other commercially available barriers. Keep in mind that these barriers should not go around the entire building. Water that gets between the barrier and the building needs to be able to escape. When installing sandbags, first affix a tarp to the vulnerable areas of the building. Then stack the sandbags against the tarp. 
For smaller areas, you can use an expanding spray foam to create a seal and then reinforce with duct tape. Caulking can also be used to fill in crevices. Be sure to apply these materials long enough before the rains are expected that they have time to dry. 

Cleanup Process 
Hopefully, the above precautions minimize water damage so you do not need to hire a professional restoration team. If you are doing the cleanup yourself, the first step is to dry the property as quickly as possible to prevent black mold or other fungi from growing. Extract all standing water using pumps or a wet vacuum, and then dry out residual moisture using fans or dehumidifiers. Sanitize all affected items before beginning repairs. 
Weather is among the many things that business owners cannot control. However, a little pre-planning can go a long way toward keeping rain damage at bay.

How Restoration Experts Estimate Fire Damage

11/5/2020 (Permalink)

Windows and door of commercial building boarded Board up services in a Charleston Park, FL building

How Restoration Experts Estimate Fire Damage

If a commercial fire destroys your Charleston Park, FL, property, emergency restoration professionals can rebuild the premises. First, they will survey the extent of the fire damage and provide an estimate of the cost. You can get estimates from different companies and then choose which one to hire.

Estimating Damage
Estimates do not just consider the size of the fire and the number of items damaged. They also include the following expenses:

Roof Replacement: If your roof was harmed by the blaze, the pros will need to install a tarp to protect the rest of your building from further damage. They can then construct a permanent roof during the restoration.
Security: Looters often target fire-damaged buildings. Your restoration company may hire security guards to monitor the property before the cleanup experts arrive. The estimate will likely include this cost.
Odor and Water Removal: Fires do not just leave behind charred remains. Your building may have a lingering smoke smell as well. The restoration company will determine the techniques and chemicals needed to remove this odor. They will also deal with the water damage caused by sprinklers and firefighter hoses.

Choosing a Restoration Company
Different restoration businesses may give you different estimates for the costs of repairs. Do not just pick the company with the lowest bid. Its employees may only complete some parts of the restoration process. The business may then hire subcontractors to finish certain tasks, which will add to the cost of your bill.
Instead, opt for a full-service contractor that performs the entire restoration and gives you a simple and transparent estimate. This reduces your stress and makes it easier to file an insurance claim.
Cleanup professionals consider several factors when estimating fire damage. Ideally, they will give you a detailed bid and promise to complete every part of the restoration. If they instead provide a generic and unusually cheap bid, you should decline their offer.