What Is Involved in the Fire Cleanup Process?
A fire in your home in Oklahoma City, OK can be devastating, and you are probably likely to want to start the process of cleaning your home. However, there are several steps that are helpful to take when cleaning smoke damage and other forms of damage from a fire in your home.
1. Taking Inventory
After a fire has taken place in your home, one of the first steps in the cleanup process is to take inventory of what damage has occurred. The items in your home, as well as the structure of the home itself, is examined by restoration professionals. Once you have an idea of what is damaged in your home, it is likely that you will have an estimate of how long the cleanup and restoration will take.
Once an assessment of your home has been made, the process of smoke cleaning and removing soot damage and smoke damage can begin. Many of your personal belongings, including clothes, photos and electronics can often be restored. Generally, a restoration company can help to determine the best methods to clean your belongings. If there is not a great amount of structural damage that has occurred, the process of cleaning may not take a great amount of time.
3. Removing Residual Odors
In addition to damaging items in your home, smoke can leave a lingering scent. While masking the odor with sprays or other products may be seen as a short-term solution, the smoke smell is likely to return. Methods to help remove the smell of smoke in your home can include replacing air filters, thoroughly sanitizing carpets, walls and ceilings and replacing the drywall in your home. After items in your home are clean and odors have been removed, reconstruction can begin if necessary.
Understanding the necessary steps to remove of smoke damage and other forms of fire damage can help you feel more at ease as the cleanup process begins in your home. If your home has already been damaged by a fire, it can be helpful to work with fire damage restoration experts.
Keeping Your Restrooms Clog Free
One clogged toilet in your building in Oklahoma City, OK, can cause water damage
Four Tips for Keeping Your Restroom Free of Clogs
Restroom maintenance is very important. One clogged toilet in your building in Oklahoma City, OK, can cause water damage not only in the restroom where it's installed but also in the floors below it. Follow these four tips for keeping your restrooms free of clogs and the potential damage that comes with them.
You may not think that people will read signs in the restroom, but posting expectations can actually help make them more mindful of their behavior. Remind those who use the facilities in your building of a few key community standards, such as:
- Don't overfill the toilet.
- Don't flush anything but toilet paper.
- Report any problems immediately.
Supply Thin Paper
Thinner toilet paper is a smarter choice for restrooms in commercial buildings. Not only does it tend to be less expensive but also can be instrumental in preventing toilet overflow. Even if someone uses a large wad of one-ply toilet paper, it is less likely to cause problems than thicker sheets.
Many items that shouldn't be flushed can result in a clogged toilet when there isn't an adequate number of trash receptacles in the restroom. No one wants to carry their trash with them or leave it on the floor, so they dispose of it the only way they have left, which is down the toilet. Make sure you have a trashcan in every stall as well as one or two large trashcans near the sinks.
Despite all your best efforts, sewage problems may still occur. Have your restrooms checked frequently throughout the day to make sure there is enough toilet paper and paper towels and to confirm that no mishaps have occurred. If there is a toilet overflow or a leak, call water mitigation specialists immediately to clean up the damage.
No one wants to walk into a restroom and see or smell the mess a clogged toilet leaves behind. Taking simple preventative measures can help everyone do their part to avoid the problem.
Teaming Up: How Disaster Response Companies and Insurance Agents Work in Tandem
No one in Oklahoma City, OK, wants to think about dealing with flooding at home following a major storm. These disasters can cause widespread damage and may even destroy parts of your home, if not your entire house altogether. Two groups of professionals will play a vital role in easing you through the recovery process: a professional storm restoration company and your insurance provider. When these two entities work together, you can get through an otherwise awful situation.
Once you discover a flood or water damage in your home after a big storm, you need to act quickly. Delays can only make the problem worse and damage more costly. Here’s what you should after a flood:
• Safely exit your home; only take items with you that you can easily and safely carry.
• Contact a reputable, experienced storm response company to assess the damage and provide cleanup services.
• Get in touch with your insurance company to report the incident and file a claim.
What the Professionals Will Do First
A storm restoration team from SERVPRO will start off by inspecting the flooded area and making note of the damage the water caused. A technician will record what items and areas of the home suffered and will then come up with a plan of how to clean up and repair the damage. SERVPRO will communicate with your insurance agent, and the two companies will get on the same page so you’ll get proper coverage.
What Are the Advantages?
Time is of the essence when it comes to repairing flood damage. It’s also vital that your insurance company initiates the claims process so you don’t have to worry about paying for expensive repairs to the issues. Because SERVPRO is thorough in every step of its work, you can rest assured that the insurance company will have all the information it needs to do its part in a timely manner.
Don’t risk hiring the wrong storm restoration group. Get in touch with SERVPRO right away so you’ll get the best disaster response and the fastest response from your insurance agent.
Tenant and Owner Responsibilities After a Fire
Whether you've experienced an apartment fire, commercial fire or a fire at a rented home in Oklahoma City, OK, the effects can be devastating to both the tenant and the landlord. It may not be clear who is responsible when it comes to the fire damage. Depending on the circumstances, liability can be divided up very differently. Let's look at some particulars.
Generally, the landlord is responsible for hiring the restoration company to repair structural damage after a business, house or apartment fire. Damage may include:
• Structural damage to:
o Pool Houses
• Damage to fixtures and appliances:
o Electrical wiring
o Supplied appliances such as dishwashers and refrigerators
In most cases, the tenant is responsible for any damage done to his or her personal property. The tenant will have to go to his or her insurance company to recover the loss of items such as:
• Tenant-owned appliances
• Video game consoles
• Musical instruments
Sometimes, there is a question of who is liable for the damage. If the landlord is proved to be responsible (for instance, due to negligence regarding the property's electrical wiring), he can be made to pay for damage to the renters' personal belongings, wages lost, costs related to finding another place to stay, and more. Conversely, if the landlord can prove that the renter was somehow negligent, the renter may be responsible for any costs related to repairing the property. If the landlord is unable to prove this, he will be liable for any structural repair, as it's the landlord's responsibility to see to it that the property is in a livable condition.
Whether you are a renter or a landlord who's suffered a commercial fire, apartment fire or house fire, you will need to make sure that you have immediately contacted your insurance company, have made a detailed list of any property that's been damaged and taken pictures of any damage to the structure and property, as well as any evidence of negligence. That way you will be prepared for any subsequent questions from the insurance company, and ensure that you're only incurring cost for the fire damage that you're actually responsible for.
A Quick Overview of the Mold Remediation Process
If you’re new to the presence of black mold growth in your Oklahoma City, OK, commercial property, the prospect of how to handle it can seem rather perplexing. Thankfully, since mold growth is such an everyday occurrence for property owners, there’s plenty of information available to give you the answers you need. If you’re curious about how to address mold cleanup and how to go about the mold remediation process in general, here is a quick rundown of how it all works and when to call in professionals for help.
First Things First: When Dealing With Severe Mold, Always Call in Professionals
While there’s still a debate over the health effects of black mold amongst experts in the field, it’s currently still safer than not to contact a highly-experienced team of mold remediation specialists to inspect your property and properly eliminate any traces of mold. Containment of the affected area is the first step in mold cleanup, preventing the spread of growth and contamination elsewhere in the building. While professionals are installing tarps and covering windows and doorways, they’ll be wearing appropriate attire designed to keep them personally protected from the effects of direct contact with the mold.
Mold Removal Consists of Various Steps
Once the affected areas have been contained, the mold removal process will begin with tearing out any building materials that show mold growth or have been in contact with the fungus in any way that can’t be restored. This ensures that any traces of the contamination are eradicated. Meanwhile, the use of proper chemicals for rightful cleaning and maintenance of the area is carried out, leading to the ultimate step of disinfection of the space. Once the area has been treated as needed, professionals can give you the go ahead when the entire process is completed and you can safely return inside the building.
If you’re stumbling blindly into a black mold situation as a commercial property owner in OKC, hiring trained and experienced technicians is a great first step in addressing mold removal.
Water Heater Cleanup Tips for Homeowners
If your water heater is leaking, your home can quickly become flooded
A leaking water heater can cause devastating damage to homes in Edmond, OK, and many homeowners are unsure what to do when their water heater breaks. There are several useful steps homeowners can take if their water heaters fail.
Turn Off the Water Immediately
If your water heater is leaking, your home can quickly become flooded. In order to stop the flow of water into your home and decrease the likelihood of major damage, it’s often useful to turn off the main water supply to your home as quickly as possible. Knowing where your home’s shutoff valve is located before your water heater begins to leak can help you to react in a timely manner.
Shut Off Your Home’s Power
Although your first thought may not be to turn off the power in your home when you have a leaking water heater, leaving the power on with a broken water heater could be hazardous. Shutting off the power can help to minimize the risk of electrical items becoming damaged. Since wet electrical wiring can cause fires, turning off the power can also help to decrease the risk of a fire occurring in your home.
Make a Claim if Necessary and Call for Help
Depending on the amount of damage that your failed water heater has caused, you may need to make a claim to your insurance company. Once you have made a claim, it’s often also helpful to contact water damage restoration professionals. Many items in your home are susceptible to water damage, and professionals can help to mitigate the damage and can also assist in the restoration process.
Knowing how to respond to a leaking water heater can help to protect your home from major damage. Turning off the water, shutting off your home’s power and making an insurance claim and contacting professionals can make the cleanup process easier for homeowners.
Renter’s Insurance and Mold Damage: 3 Facts
Mold damage due to a leak in an Oklahoma City home
Learning the Facts of How Mold Can Affect Your Rental Space
Having rental insurance in Oklahoma City, OK, can protect your belongings against sudden damage or theft. However, there are some circumstances that may leave you without the coverage you need to recover, such as problems resulting from mold growth. Learning the facts about how fungi might affect your rented space and whether you are safeguarded against the damage it does can be important for protecting your finances and for your peace of mind while renting a property.
1. Most Internal Mold Causes Are Covered
One of the most important factors when it comes to what type of mold damage renter’s insurance covers is what caused the issue. For example, a flood caused by a burst kitchen pipe or a malfunctioning HVAC unit that in turn causes mold will likely be covered by your rental insurance. It is important to know, however, that protection against natural or sewer floods may require you to buy an additional policy to be covered completely.
2. Negligent Acts May Void Coverage
If it is found that you caused mold problems in your apartment or rented home, any coverage you might have been entitled to could be voided. This may include fridge mold, the improper cleanup of small floods that damage your belongings and poor housekeeping habits. Learning a few common causes of mold and how to prevent it can protect you from losing coverage.
3. Landlord Liability Can Be Limited
If a landlord fails to maintain your building and a leak or a flood damages your belongings, you might want to review your lease before you seek compensation, as many property owners have you sign away liability when you rent from them. Your landlord might have a mold removal and restoration service come in to resolve the issue, but depending on your lease, you might have to pay for damaged items out of pocket.
Buying rental insurance for any property you lease in Oklahoma City, OK, can protect you from a variety of different problems, including mold growth. Learning the facts about coverage may help you feel prepared in the face of flooding, fires and other events that cause fungi to grow.
How To Avoid a Cigarette Fire
Keep fire extinguisher accessible
In addition to causing health problems, smoking may also pose a safety hazard. Failure to recognize the potential dangers of a lit cigarette can result in disastrous consequences. To safeguard their homes from a potentially destructive cigarette fire, homeowners in Edmond, OK, should abide by several important protocols.
Properly Extinguish Butts
Properly extinguishing butts is vital to preventing infernos. To accomplish this, you can utilize several strategies:
- Ensure butt is not smoldering
- Discard in an ashtray, not on the ground
- Wet butt before disposal
Throwing a smoldering cigarette on the ground may ignite nearby combustibles, such as dry vegetation. To avoid this, place used butts in a glass or ceramic ashtray.
To minimize the risk of an ashtray fire, routinely clean the container and wet your butt before placing it inside. Never throw a used cigarette into a trash receptacle until it has been properly extinguished.
Avoid Smoking in Bed
The best way to prevent a cigarette fire in your home is to refrain from smoking inside. If you choose to smoke indoors, avoid doing so while lying in bed. Falling embers can easily ignite clothing, bedding and your mattress. Because you may not be alert enough to properly extinguish a cigarette, you should also refrain from smoking inside if you are excessively drowsy.
Never Leave Cigarettes Unattended
Whether indoors or outside, leaving a lit cigarette unattended can be dangerous. The burning object can fall from its resting place and ignite surrounding combustibles. Embers can also fall into potentially hazardous areas, such as cushions, the carpet or dry leaves.
Keep Fire Extinguisher Accessible
Any flame inside or near your residence poses a potential danger. Keeping a fire extinguisher accessible can help you smother a small blaze, minimizing damage and fire cleanup requirements.
No homeowner wants to endure a blaze and a time-consuming fire damage restoration project. Although refraining from smoking in or near your residence is the safest way to prevent a cigarette fire, employing conscientious practices can minimize the threat.
How To Keep Excess Moisture Out of Your Building
Commercial storm damage in Oklahoma City, OK
How To Keep Excess Moisture Out of Your Building
As a business owner in Oklahoma City, OK, you want to make sure your building is safe, clean and useful. Your building's interiors are not designed to withstand a lot of extra moisture, so the key to protecting them is keeping the moisture out. You can avoid most rain damage, even in the strongest storm season, by doing everything you can to make sure your roof and exterior walls resist leaks.
How Leaks Happen
For storm damage to occur, three conditions have to exist:
- Cracks or openings in wall or roof
- Water present near the cracks
- Pressure forcing water into cracks
If you have weak spots in your roof, along the joints of your walls or near your windows, it is likely that water will get into your building and cause some damage. If it goes undetected, an initially small leak can develop into flood damage or black mold growth that has to be remediated by mold mitigation specialists.
How To Prevent Leaks
You can prevent rain damage by having a strong building envelope. Start by inspecting your building and making note of its current state of protection. Look for any openings where water could get in, such as cracks in the plaster, worn flashing or badly installed joints. It's important to identify problem areas so that you can get the necessary repairs done.
Once you know where flood cleanup is likely to be necessary should heavy rainfall occur, you know exactly where to make reinforcements. Consider adding an extra layer of protection on your roof. Check your drainage system to make sure water flows directly into it and away from your building. If possible, recess your windows.
Excess moisture can cause a lot of problems in your building, especially if it is hidden from plain sight. While a little storm cleanup may be necessary with vicious storms, you can prevent most rain damage by upgrading your building's protection.
The Top 3 Commercial Plumbing Problems
Pipes can break or leak for several reasons.
Many commercial buildings have similar plumbing problems. While dripping faucets or toilets that constantly run may only raise water bills, other issues can result in significant usage spikes or water damage. Find out more about the three most common plumbing problems and ways that building owners or managers can prevent an incident such as a clogged toilet from becoming expensive or causing extensive damage.
1. Broken or Leaky Pipes
Pipes can break or leak for several reasons. Some materials may be prone to corrode or wear out over time. Supply lines that are exposed to below-freezing temperatures can also develop frozen blockages that cause pressure to build until a pipe bursts.
2. Clogged Drains
The risk of clogs varies depending on the condition of a sewer line, the primary use of a building and the number of occupants. A sewer line that is old and penetrated by tree roots is more likely to become blocked. Restaurants where large amounts of cooking fats or grease end up in the drain are more prone to sewer backups. As the number of occupants of a building goes up, so does the likelihood that non-flushable materials will result in a clogged toilet.
3. Water Wastage
Some buildings have many bathroom facilities. This can make it harder to monitor the condition of each and every faucet and toilet. Even equipment designed to promote functionality, such as a flushometer, can end up resulting in wastage. The water wasted by dripping faucets or broken or inefficient toilets throughout a structure can add up to a significantly higher water bill.
If any of these issues are currently affecting a commercial building in Oklahoma City, OK the property owner or manager should contact a plumber. If a leak or flooding results from a broken pipe or clogged toilet, mitigation and restoration specialists can eliminate primary damage and prevent secondary damage.