Recent Posts

How To Handle Leaking Water in a Light Fixture

4/23/2022 (Permalink)

water coming out a light fixture If you find water in light fixtures and ceiling tiles, get help right away.

How to Fix a Light Fixture That Is Leaking Water

Leaking and flooding are generally easy to spot in Topeka, KS, especially when it occurs in common spaces such as your basement or under your sink. However, a ceiling leak is much less obvious if your everyday activities do not include staring at the ceiling. If a pipe burst overhead, you could have a real problem that goes unnoticed until you look up and see water in light fixtures or stains on your ceiling tiles. If your light fixtures are filled with water, you should take these immediate steps:

  • Shut off the electricity
  • Turn the main water valve off
  • Call for help

Cutting the Power Off

The most important step above all the others is turning off the electricity. Water acts as a conductor and can spread the electric current to anything it touches, resulting in an electrical shock. Turning off the electricity is the best way to protect you and your household from accidental shock. Once you have cut the power at the breaker box, test dry appliances in the room to ensure the power is truly off. Do not touch or turn on the affected light fixtures.

Stopping the Water

Once the electricity is cut off, shut off the main water valve. Shutting off the water stops additional water in light fixtures from collecting. If you see any water collecting on your floor, put towels down to soak up the water and prevent additional damage.

Hiring the Professionals

When dealing with water and electricity, you should never attempt to fix the problem yourself. Call a plumber to fix the broken pipe and hire an electrician to replace your fixtures and test your electrical system to make sure it is safe to operate again. Enlist the help of water cleanup and restoration service to repair any ceiling damage.
If you find water in light fixtures and ceiling tiles, get help right away. Turning off the power, shutting off the water and hiring professionals is the fastest and safest way to fix the problem and get your home back up and running.

How To Handle Water Damage After a Fire

4/18/2022 (Permalink)

Firefighters putting out a fire in a house Water damage after a fire in Wichita, KS.

Steps To Take When You Experience Water Damage Following a Fire

You do not just have to worry about fire damage after a blaze. The water and other materials used to suppress the flames can be just as harmful to your property. This is especially true if first responders had to use a fire hose. Hoses spray water with more pressure and power than home sprinkler systems use.

You cannot just ignore this water, either. The water could encourage the growth of mold spores in your home within just 24 hours. This mold may then destroy:

  • Wood
  • Drywall
  • Floorboards

You thus need to address the water problem as soon as possible. However, you should not utilize any vacuums or wet appliances. You should also stay out of any rooms that show signs of structural issues. Here are some other steps you should take when you experience water damage following a fire.

1. Make Sure the House Is Safe

Talk to the fire damage professionals who responded to your home. Only enter the house when they say it is safe to do so. In the meantime, check to see if water has harmed the outside of your property.

2. Call the Pros

Next, contact your insurance provider and find out the details of your coverage. You should ask if there are any limits to your policy. You should also find out if your insurer will pay for temporary living expenses until you can move back into your house.
Be sure to call your local fire cleanup professionals, as well. They should know how to handle any harm caused by flames, smoke or water.

3. Document the Damage

After you are given permission to enter your house, take videos and photos of the affected areas. This should expedite the insurance claims process.
Both water and fire damage may affect your Wichita, KS, home after a blaze. Once it is safe to enter the property, document the damage and call your insurance provider. Then have restoration professionals repair your house as soon as possible.

Preparing Your Business for Severe Storms

4/5/2022 (Permalink)

Hard drive connected to a computer Keep computer files backed up on an external hard drive or cloud.

Getting Ready for Severe Storms in Your Business

A hurricane, a tropical storm or even heavy rain can critically damage your Maize, KS, business if you do not prioritize disaster preparedness. Creating a plan to fortify your establishment against strong weather can mitigate the impact, especially when it comes to unexpected severe weather. Take these important steps to craft an effective storm plan.

Create a Planning Team

Even with your leadership position, you cannot prepare your business alone. Create a task force team that can handle important elements such as:

  • Employee and client safety
  • Data recovery
  • Property protection
  • Communication system

Depending on the team size and the complexity of these areas, you can either delegate these sections to one team or split them up between smaller groups that meet later. Build a team where members vary in experience, work shifts and locations, as they may have different perspectives on how a storm impacts their day.

Take Advantage of Technology

Today's technology is particularly helpful for disaster preparedness. For instance, wireless communication makes it faster and easier to send emergency messages to team members and clients about any sudden situation via phone call, email, text or social media. Your data is also crucial to your business, so use advancements like the cloud system to move it to an offsite facility. This move ensures that important information is safe from any physical storm damage.

Practice for the Situation

A detailed and careful plan never matters without a successful execution, and business preparedness is not an exception to this. Once you have created plans for safety, evacuation and property protection, it is time to practice them to ensure everything runs smoothly during an unexpected event. Assign roles to employees, such as leading the evacuation of certain areas to ensure an orderly procedure. You can both schedule drills and run some surprise ones to test the organization's readiness.

Disaster preparedness allows you to protect both your employees and your building from unexpected storms. Enact these safety measures now and stay in contact with helpful organizations like the insurance company and storm damage remediation to handle the aftermath effectively.

3 Benefits of a Portable Generator

3/29/2022 (Permalink)

Red portable generator With a portable generator, a power outage is no longer an issue.

Three Advantages of a Portable Generator

Does your building in Colwich, KS, commonly suffer from storm damages and power outages? A storm damage cleanup professional is able to help with storm damage, and a portable generator is a great solution to a power outage. There are many benefits to such a device.

1. It's Portable

It's all in the name. We love our portable devices. We all know how much cell phones have revolutionized our life. While a generator might not be as great as a cell phone, it still has many advantages over a traditional stationary one. Being able to move from site to site is a great benefit. It saves you from having to buy a generator for every location, and it's great if you have multiple buildings in different areas that often suffer from a power outage.

2. Prevents Downtime

Whether you're powering computers or power tools, no one likes downtime. Interrupting workflow is one of the most disruptive things for commercial processes and workers. We all know what it's like to lose a bunch of data after a short power dip. Though a mobile generator won't automatically turn on without some extra configuring, it's still better than waiting for a power company to fix the issue, especially in severe weather. The nature of its portability also allows quick setup.

3. Safety Features

Because of their more compact size and portable nature, these types of generators come in-built with extra safety features. A circuit breaker is a standard-issue feature; it prevents power overloads and potentially harmful levels of current. Alongside this, there are several mechanisms working in tandem that help prevent overloads in the first place. A low-oil shutoff is also a standard feature, especially in portable generators. Though it may sound like a bad idea for your generator to automatically shut off, it helps prevent dangerous damages to the mechanisms inside due to a lack of lubrication.
A power outage is a worry of the past with a portable generator.

How To Protect Your Business From Frozen Pipes

3/29/2022 (Permalink)

Air mover and dehumidifier placed on carpet Commercial water damage in Maize, KS.

Water damage can arise from a variety of situations all year long. In the winter, it is especially important to protect your Maize, KS, business from frozen pipe bursts.

Preventing Frozen Pipes

Just like homeowners, business owners face the risk of frozen pipes every winter. Fortunately, there are many steps that can be taken to prevent this issue. The following are situations that increase the likelihood of pipes freezing:

  • Temperatures below 20 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Temperature fluctuations
  • Lack of insulation

To prevent frozen pipes, keep the indoor temperature as consistent as possible during the day and night. This prevents the temperature fluctuations that can lead to frozen pipes. If your business has pipes inside cabinets, leave the cabinet doors open to allow warm air to reach the pipes. Insulating the pipes themselves is another effective way to keep the water from freezing. In certain situations, particularly if you know uninsulated pipes are going to be exposed to particularly cold temperatures, leaving a small trickle of water running can help keep the water from freezing in the pipes.

Cleaning Water Damage

Unfortunately, water damage cannot always be prevented. If your commercial building experiences water damage from broken pipes, you may be able to perform the water cleanup yourself. First, extract the standing water using pumps or a specialized vacuum. Then dry out the remaining moisture using fans and dehumidifiers. If the humidity outside is low, you can open windows and doors to increase airflow. Next, clean and sanitize the affected areas. Finally, begin making repairs to damaged items. Depending on your skill level and the severity of the damage, you may be able to make the repairs yourself. More complex damage may require the services of an experienced restoration company.
Freezing pipes can burst and cause water damage which can lead to structural problems and mold growth. Fortunately, with a little preventive action and quick cleanup when necessary, these problems can likely be avoided.

Why Mold Keeps Coming Back

3/29/2022 (Permalink)

Black mold growth on window phrame Microscopic mold spores can enter your home or building through windows.

What Causes Mold To Come Back?

Microscopic mold spores can enter your home or building through windows, doors, or air conditioning systems. Mold thrives on moisture to grow. If you continue to discover mold growth in the same spot in your home or building in Wichita, KS, despite cleaning it up, it's possible that you aren't addressing the source of the problem correctly.

1. Identify Water Issues

Mold returns when sources of water problems are not properly addressed. Look for leaky pipes, dripping air conditioners, and condensation build-up from high humidity. If you find mold in one of these areas, simply cleaning it up will not solve the issue. You must fix the source of the water issue and prevent further moisture build-up to discourage continual mold growth.

2. Clean Thoroughly

Address the mold spores in the air. Turn off any air conditioners or systems that could be circulating mold spores to other areas and use an air filtration system that can clean the air. Clean and remove all visible mold with antimicrobial cleansers.

3. Remove and Replace Damaged Items

Furniture and possessions infested with mold should be discarded and replaced. Remove and replace any building materials affected by water damage that cannot be thoroughly cleaned and dried such as carpets, flooring, or even patches of drywall or ceiling tiles. When mold keeps coming back, it's likely it was never gone. Mold often grows beyond the surface of what you can see. Remove and replace those areas that are repeatedly infested with mold.

4. Use Professional Equipment

If you continue to experience mold in the same areas over and over, your cleaning methods may be inadequate to address the problem. Mold remediation specialists have professional equipment that will effectively scrub the air clean. They are also skilled in identifying and removing mold-infested materials.
Mold growth is invasive and often recurrent. As mold spores are everywhere, it's challenging to rid your home or building of it completely. Address the source of recurrent mold and clean and replace as necessary.

Reduce the Risk of a House Fire With These 4 Candle Alternatives

2/28/2022 (Permalink)

wax warmer Get your house smelling great while staying safe.

Four Candle Alternatives

Although candles smell wonderful and look lovely when lit in your home in South Hutchinson, KS, they pose a serious fire hazard to your home. This is especially true when they are used in unattended rooms, you forget to blow them out before leaving, or you choose to let them burn while you sleep. Luckily, there are many other great ways to keep your home smelling great all year long that won’t run the risk of needing to call in a fire restoration team. Check out these four candle alternatives that are a much safer choice!

1. Wax Warmers

For the same traditional smell of a candle without the candle fire, opt for a wax warmer! These warmers use a lightbulb rather than an open flame to heat up wax. Some designs feature a lamp that you simply place a regular candle under or a dish over a lightbulb where you place several wax cubes of your choice.

2. Essential Oil Diffuser

While most candle alternatives only give out a great smell, an essential oil diffuser will emit a scent of your choice while providing great health and therapeutic benefits as well. Diffusers use water mixed with a small amount of oil to release a scented vapor into the air.

3. Battery-Powered Candle

Flameless, battery-powered candles almost feel like cheating since they look and smell just like the real thing! They include a warming base with scented wax and some even flicker like a real candle would.

4. Potpourri

Potpourri is a classic home scent option that doesn’t require any kind of heating or flame to smell great. Using a mixture of various dried petals, spices, and other fragrant plants, potpourri is fragrant just on its own. Plus, they’re often made of all-natural materials! Placed in a decorative bowl or holder, potpourri adds decoration to your home as well.

Get your house smelling great while staying safe with these four great candle alternatives. You’ll never need to stress about forgetting to blow out the candle again!

How To Keep Insurance Claim Costs Down With SERVPRO

2/23/2022 (Permalink)

severe fire damage in a home, furniture damaged, smoke in walls Fire damage in a Valley Center, KS home.

SERVPRO Shows You How To Keep Insurance Claim Costs Low

If a client has experienced a disaster in his or her Valley Center, KS home and has fire or water damage as a result, using a trusted restoration company can help you provide them with needed assistance while keeping insurance costs down. SERVPRO can provide services, such as pretesting, that will help both you and your client get through the claims process.

1. 24-Hour Service To Get the Process Started As Soon As Possible

The company is open at all hours, so you won’t have to wait to begin working through the insurance claim process. A quick response is important during an emergency and getting started sooner can save you both time and money.

2. Mitigation To Prevent Further Damage

If damage is not treated immediately, it will get worse and end up requiring more work when the company starts repairs. Mitigation is an important part of restoration and will be done within four hours when you work with SERVPRO. This will prevent the damage from spreading or worsening so that repairs will be less costly. It will also allow them to finish the job more quickly.

3. Pretesting To Determine Restorability

If your client’s property has been damaged, it is possible that it might need to be replaced. SERVPRO will do pretesting on each damaged item to determine if this will be the case. Because it takes less money to restore an object than it does to replace it, this step can help keep costs down if items are found to be salvageable.

4. Providing Access to Detailed Information

SERVPRO can provide the insurance agent with information that can help you make the right call when filing the insuring claim. They can give you an inventory of damaged items with corresponding pictures as well as access to their Claims Information Center where you can find information related to the claim.
When your client files an insurance claim, you want to make sure that you are doing whatever you can for them while also keeping costs down for the insurance agency. The right damage restoration company can help you do both.

3 Easy Ways To Avoid Frozen Pipes

2/17/2022 (Permalink)

Insulation for pipes Insulate your pipes.

A burst pipe doesn’t equal holiday fun in Fort Scott, KS, but pipes do freeze and consequently break, all winter long. Things like electronics and documents can be destroyed by flooding from a broken pipe in seconds. Buildings that are not inspected after freezing may harbor standing water, which can seriously damage the building itself and endanger human health. Fortunately, frozen pipes and resulting flood damage can largely be avoided with minimal effort.

Preventing Frozen Pipes

When water freezes, it expands. Most water pipes do not, and the force of the freezing water inside often ends in pipe breakage. Follow these three guidelines to keep your water from getting pushy and damaging your pipes:

1. Keep Your Indoor Temperature Up

As long as the water is on, even a vacant building should never have its thermostat set below 55 degrees. In addition, doors to rooms with plumbing should be open if those rooms don’t have their own heat sources. Indoor heat combats the cold that attacks underfloor pipes and those in exterior walls. If the inside temperature is too low, you may wind up with a frozen pipe.

2. Let the Faucet Trickle

On the coldest nights, leaving vulnerable faucets to trickle can prevent a burst pipe. Water freezes fastest when it’s not moving, and a small amount of flow can disrupt the freezing process.

3. Insulate and Install Heating Devices

Pipes located in places like garages and outbuildings are often especially vulnerable. This plumbing may be adequately protected with foam insulation. In colder climates, however, some pipes may require a little extra help. Heat tape is one option. It wraps around a pipe, providing warmth to keep the water inside from freezing via the use of electricity. Other, similar products can be purchased at home improvement stores.

A burst pipe can cause a lot of problems. Nevertheless, frozen pipes are frequently easily avoidable. Keep pipes at a reasonable temperature and let faucet water flow a little when it’s really cold, and you should avert any need for water damage repair this winter or next.

How Much Damage Can a Toilet Overflow Cause?

1/24/2022 (Permalink)

Overflowing broken toilet A flooded toilet can cause damage on one or more floors of a home.

Types Of Damage a Toilet Overflow Can Cause

A flooded toilet can cause damage on one or more floors of a home in Haysville, KS. You should immediately contact a plumber upon noticing signs of a blocked drain line and take measures to limit sewer damage. Here are some of the types of damage a toilet overflow can cause.

Contaminated Water

Water from a toilet overflow is almost always contaminated. Restoration professionals categorize water damage into three categories:

  • Category One clean water, originating from supply lines
  • Category Two contaminated water, from showers or appliances
  • Category Three contaminated water containing solid waste

Water from a flooded toilet is likely either Category Two gray water or Category Three black water. Either category of sewer damage calls for disinfection in addition to cleaning and drying.

Damaged Building Materials

Contaminated water can permeate porous materials such as carpet or drywall. These materials cannot be completely disinfected, and may pose a continued risk of microbial growth. For this reason, mitigation experts recommend tearing out these materials prior to disinfecting and drying the area. Carpet, drywall, or damaged ceilings on a lower floor can be replaced during the restoration process.

Secondary Damage Risks

If damage is not cleaned up quickly or disinfected, there may be an increased risk of several types of secondary damage. Here are a few of the most common forms of additional damage:

• Bacteria
• Staining
• Mold

Immediate mitigation and timely cleanup can limit the extent of primary and secondary damage. Try to keep water from spreading until a plumber arrives to clear the drain line blockage.

If you are not sure how to handle sewer damage, rely on a sewage company in Haysville, KS. Although homeowners insurance probably will not cover the drain blockage, the damage that results should be covered. This may not be the case if the issue is due to a backup in an outside sewer or drain.