prevent water damage in winter

Prevent Water Damage in Winter

Water damage can happen at any time, at any season. But sources of water damage can somewhat change as the season switches. Fall is a great time to check your home from the damage it has experienced from severe storms in summer and it is also a time to prepare your home for the coming winter season. Doing these things done now can keep you from having insurance claims and to prevent you from spending hundreds to thousands of dollars for repair. Below are some things you can do to prepare your home and prevent water damage in winter.  

 

Check Your Pipes And Plumbing

 

Pipes and plumbing are some of the potential sources of water damage. During low temperatures, these items of your house, both external and internal, can be prone to freezing.  

  • Inspect the condition of your pipes. If the water pressure suddenly became low, it could possibly be blocked by tree roots or it has started to become deteriorated. Hire a plumber to properly check your pipes and make sure that they are in good condition.
  • Insulate exposed plumbing. To avoid freezing and potential rupture this coming winter, consider insulating water supply lines that are routed through unconditioned areas of your home such as attic and crawlspace. This plumbing system can be prone to freezing. Frigid outdoor air can pass through small openings, such as electrical holes. Make sure to seal any openings to prevent this air from touching plumbing.
  • Clean the gutters. Falling autumn leaves or other debris may clog gutters and can cause overflowing during winter rains or when the snow starts melting. Overflowing can lead water to penetrate the exterior walls and siding and will allow water to intrude on the internal part of your home causing severe water damage.  

 

Check Roof, Attic, and Chimney

In colder temperature or during a winter storm, the roof, attic or chimney (if damaged) can allow water to permeate your home. Checking them before the winter strikes can prevent you from having a water-damaged home.

  • Do a roof check. Summer storms and sun can damage your roof. This season is the best time to check your roof for any defects. Replace or repair any missing shingles. If you feel unsafe accessing your roof, or if you are in doubt of the condition of your roof, you may hire a professional roofer contractor to help you inspect your roof and perform necessary repairs.
  • Check your attic or crawlspaces. It is often wet in the fall months and summer has probably brought a lot of rains. The water that impacts the wall of your home can cause moisture to seep into your attic and crawlspaces. A simple leak from your roof can also cause your attic to experience water damage. Check your attic or your crawlspace every fall or twice a year to make sure that everything is sealed up and to fix any moisture problems.
  • Inspect your chimney, fireplace, and furnace. Checking these areas of your home will keep you from having costly repairs due to emergency water damage. Inspect the condition of your chimney, both indoor and outdoor. Clean the flue, check the flashing and make sure that there is no build-up of debris. In addition, your heating system should function properly during this season and the colder season. Have your HVAC checked by a professional to see potential damage and to ensure its heating efficiency.

 

Secure The Exterior Of Your Home

As there are interior sources of water damage, there could be sources of water damage outside of your home.

  • Secure outdoor furniture. While it could be great to have a cozy outdoor patio in fall, winter storms can blow away outdoor furniture or other personal belongings and can potentially damage the exterior of your home causing water to penetrate inside. Keep them in proper areas and secure that they won’t blow out during severe weather conditions.
  • Reinforce windows and doors. Winter storms can shatter your windows and doors causing breakage and eventually allowing water to seep in. Reinforce them by installing a shatter or plywood.
  • Trim overhanging tree branches. While trees are beautiful in fall, they can be the culprit of damage in your home. Make sure to cut back overhanging branches that may not hold off the weight of the winter snow. It is best to give your home a three-foot safety margin, no limbs or branches are hanging on your roof or walls. Moreover, fall is also the best time to remove any dead trees or plants.

While you are enjoying the last bits of summer and welcoming the cool breeze of fall, make sure to inspect your home and give it basic maintenance to ensure that it is ready for the coldest season of the year. It is imortant to remember to be safe 

But if you are now dealing with water damage due to severe storms of summer or any source of water damage, please contact us immediately to take the necessary actions.

signs of water damage in the basement

How To Tell The Signs Of Water Damage In Your Basement And What To Do About It

Water damage can occur in many ways. It can be in the form of flooding due to heavy rainstorms or from a water leak of a broken pipe. Because of that, water damage has become a prevalent issue that a lot of homeowners, even business owners have to face. The fact that water damage can be very extensive, addressing the problem is critical. It is important to look for signs of water damage and deal with them immediately.

Basements, even the most fortified ones, are one of the most common areas of a home that is prone to water damage. Main water pipes and drains, HVAC system, a water heater tank and a sump pump can all be found in a basement. A minor malfunction from any of this equipment could leave flooding to your basement. Not to mention the heavy rain that can seep through cracks in your walls and floors.

Signs of Water Damage in the Basement

The most visible sign of water damage in your basement is the pool of water. But your basement doesn’t necessarily need to have flooded to make it damaged. Sometimes, the sign is obvious but often than not, they are subtle. Knowing the signs of water damage in your basement is important to identify the issues and fix them.

Let us guide you on how to determine if you have water damage in your basement and what to do about it.

Efflorescence

Efflorescence is a sparkly, white and sometimes grayish residue that forms on the surfaces of a brick, concrete or clay tiles. This powdery mineral occurs when water seeps into building materials. This build-up is associated with poor waterproofing but it can also be a sign of water damage.

Mold

Mold is a natural substance that grows where water or moisture and an organic food source are present. The building materials used in basements have cellulose can be great food for mold. If there is a persistent source of water or moisture in your basement, and water damage in your basement is not addressed quickly, mold will most like to develop.

In the case mold has started to grow, it is another sign of a bigger problem. Mold has spores that can spread easily and when inhaled can cause health hazards.

Cracks

Cracks in your basement’s foundation, floor or walls can be alarming. Not only water can pass through these entry points, but they can be an issue of water or ice putting pressure on the structure of your home. Hairline cracks are not threatening, but cracks that are wider than 1/16th of an inch should be repaired as quickly as possible before they can create severe damage.

Odor

Since basements are on the lower ground of your home, they are prone to producing odors. But if you notice an unusual and persistent odor, even after cleaning and ventilating your basement, it can be because of mold growth. Mold can discharge some musty odor. If there is a lingering musty odor in your basement, it is an indication that it is suffering from water damage.

Stains And Discoloration

Stains and discoloration are the most common signs of water damage in your basement. Walls or ceilings and tiles can form some yellowish-brown color spots and water stains if it has experienced water damage. It is best to inspect these areas of your basement to determine if you have a water-damaged basement.

Deterioration

The building materials like plaster, drywall, and wood can become deteriorated when exposed to water. If these materials are consistently exposed to standing water or excess moisture, they will breakdown. Exposure to water can also cause paint and wallpaper to flake and peel off. While they can be an indicator of aging, water damage to your basement can also be the cause. Inspect your basement thoroughly for any deterioration of your building materials.

How To Deal With Water Damage in Your Basement

Whatever the cause and the severity of the damage is in your basement, addressing the problem immediately is critical. When water damage in your basement is left untreated, it can cause more destruction to your property. Its structural integrity will be at risk and it can cause a hazard to you and your family.

While it is a good idea to resolve water damage issues on your own especially if the damage is minimal, it is still best to rely on professionals. Water damage professionals are experienced and trained in handling water damage restoration. Moreover, they use the right tools to fully mitigate the damage.

In addition to that, mold can be present in your basement as this is the immediate consequence of water damage. Category 3 water (water that contains contaminants) might also be involved in water damage to your basement. These two factors add up to the difficulty and danger of handling basement water damage.

With all that said, if you experience water damage to your basement, it is best to call in water damage restoration professionals.

Water Damage From Appliances

No one could argue the great benefits we get from our appliances. They have become our life partner, making things easier and comfortable for us. Though we rely so much upon them, they can also cause havoc to our home.  When the appliances become faulty, serious water damage from appliances may happen. 

According to the Nationals Flood Insurance Agency, about 30% of residential flood claims are caused by appliance failure, which means that other causes of water damage can be prevented. 

The Appliances That Commonly Cause Water Damage

These are the appliances that can potentially cause serious water damage in your home.

1.     Washing Machine

Washing machine water damage can be very catastrophic since it can contain a large amount of water. The most common cause of water damage from a washing machine is the supply hose failure. Over time, it gets deteriorated. 

A clogged drain that was caused by pieces of fabric or debris that were accumulated under the drain is another reason for a leaky washing machine. You might need a lint trap to prevent this from happening.

Overloading your washer can also cause serious water damage. Washing with smaller loads might have disadvantages but it can lengthen the life span of your washer.

2.     Refrigerator

A leaky refrigerator happens for several reasons. One of these is the clogged defrost drain. Food particles in the drain prevent water to drain to the pan. Water builds up will eventually start to leak out of the refrigerator. You might need to flush the drain with hot water or use a stiff wire to remove the blockage. 

Another cause of a leaky refrigerator is a broken drain pan. Water automatically gathers in the drain pan, but when water escapes from it, that means your drain pan has a problem. This problem can be fixed by replacing your drain pan.

A loose ice maker supply line is another culprit of a leaky refrigerator. If the connection is loose, you will be facing tremendous water damage at home.

3.     Water Heater

 Among the top five appliances, your water heater is the leading cause of water damage in your home. The leak from the water heater can be the cause of a malfunctioned temperature and pressure relief valve, a loose connection and a corroded storage tank. 

Check the entire parts of your water heater, the inlet, and outlet connection, drain valve and the bottom part of it. When the leak is due to a corroded water tank, then you have to replace the entire water heater. 

Since water heater issues can normally go unnoticed, it is best to hire a professional plumber every year to inspect your water heater. 

4.     Dishwasher

In most cases, dishwasher causes water damage when someone puts too much or wrong type of detergent into the dispenser. This type of damage can be avoided by just reading your manual for the proper type of detergent and the right amount. 

In some cases, the leak can be because of a damaged or broken gasket or loose latches and hinges. If the gasket is broken it needs to be replaced, while loose hinges or latches can be fixed by tightening the screws. 

However, if you think that the above mentioned are not the causes of the water damage, better check the water lines. The leak could be from the pipes that connect the dishwasher from the main water supply line or it could be from the line that drains water out of the dishwasher.  

5.     Air Conditioners

A malfunctioned drain pipe is the common culprit of water damage from your air conditioner. Water overflows and will start leaking in your entire home. Installing a secondary drain pipeline can help in removing overflowing water.

Preventing Water Damage from Home Appliances

Some sources of water damage can happen accidentally, but in most cases, water damage from home appliances can be prevented. Should you want to maintain the function of these appliances, schedule plumbing maintenance and do prompt repairs. It is also best to have your appliances inspected by professionals to see any signs of future damage.

If you notice any signs of a leak, direct yourself to the main supply water valve. Shut it off and check the cause of the leak. Do not let water sit for a long time because it can result in extensive water damage.

You may also use some smart devices such as a water monitoring device or a leak detection system that can automatically shut off the main water when a water leak is detected.

If these appliances have caused severe water damage to your home, don’t wait any longer. Water damage that is left untreated for a long time can be even costlier. Call in professionals to fix the damage. At Temecula, we have a local water damage restoration company that provides emergency services. We perform the best solutions in town. Call us today.

black mold on the ceiling

Why Is There Black Mold on My Bathroom Ceiling

Molds, in general, can be very disgusting. They can appear anywhere and can present themselves in different colors. There are green, orange, white and black. However, black mold is considered to be the most toxic mold. That is because black mold can produce mycotoxins that can cause health hazards to humans.

Because many people do not take immediate action when they see mold started to develop, it becomes the cause of different illnesses.

Let us help you understand why you can see black mold on your bathroom ceiling.

What is Black Mold?

Black mold, known as Stachybotrys Chartarum, is a common type of indoor mold. By its name alone, it can be seen as black or dark green. Not only black mold can be easily seen, but it has also a distinct smell, a musty smell.

Just like other types of mold, it releases spores that can enter your house through the air and spread quickly in your entire home. These spores outside of the house can also attach to people’s clothing, shoes, bags and even to animals. They can be a good vehicle for mold to enter your home. When they start to drop in damp areas or areas that have excessive moisture, like where leakage may happen in walls or bathroom ceiling, they will start to grow and digest whatever nutrients are present to survive. 

Then, molds will start to destroy things.

What Causes Black Mold

Bathrooms are one of the most common places where you can easily see mold. It can have all the factors that are needed for mold to start growing. This includes;

  • Excessive humidity
  • Poor insulation
  • Dampness
  • Darkness
  • Water leak
  • Food source
  • Warm temperature

In most cases, the bathroom ceiling becomes an ideal place for black mold to grow due to condensation. When moisture that is produced inside your bathroom comes in contact with the ceiling and becomes its resting place, condensation begins. That is the reason why condensation is very common in cold surfaces. 

Dangers of Black Mold

People who are exposed to molds can have different symptoms, such as stuffy nose, sneezing, wheezing, and itchy skin or eyes. Some could even have an intense reaction such as fever or difficulty breathing, especially if they have allergies to molds. Some people can develop asthma. People who have respiratory problems or weakened immune system or those who are undergoing cancer treatment, had organ or stem cell transplant can be at risk with mold infections.  

According to the CDC, the molds themselves are not toxic or poisonous. Moreover, the hazards that are carried out by molds may produce mycotoxins that could be dangerous to people. There are reports, rare but possible, that these toxigenic molds can cause serious illnesses such as pulmonary hemorrhage or memory loss.

If you see any signs of black mold in your toilet, it is best to call in professionals. Other surfaces of your bathroom might also be affected, such as tile grout and ceiling drywall. Removing and replacing the affected area can be the best long-term solution.

How To Prevent Black Mold On Your Bathroom Ceiling

Since mold can cause severe reactions to people, it is best to prevent and control mold growth.

  • Keep humidity level as long as you can (preferably not higher than 50%)
  • Use an air conditioner or a humidifier during the warm season
  • Keep the area well-ventilated. You may use exhaust fans.
  • Paint your ceiling with mold-resistant paint.
  • Cleaning the bathroom regularly with mold-killing products.
  • Do not use a carpet in your bathroom.
  • Remove and replace any water damaged carpets.
  • Dry wet surfaces in the bathroom.

Proper maintenance can be the best way of preventing mold growth. If any type of water damage happens in your bathroom, it is best to resolve it right away and inspect for any visible mold. 

When treating black mold, it is important to wear protective gear to prevent any allergic reactions.

Mold Remediation

In cases that black mold becomes severe and causing health problems to you and your family, mold remediation can be your best resort. Hire a local mold remediation company to properly remove mold. Professionals will make sure that your home is livable and free from any danger black mold can bring, These are the steps you can expect during the process.

  1. Determine the size of the area that needs to be contained.
  2. Evaluate the number of air scrubbers needed during the process.
  3. Install air scrubber in the affected area.
  4. Vacuum all areas included in the containment process
  5. Removing all porous materials such as drywall.
  6. Cleaning and disinfecting all surfaces.
  7. Fixing the source of mold growth.

Black mold or any type of mold should be treated promptly, though reactions could happen rarely. A removal specialist can help you with this issue. At Superior Restoration, we offer the best deal when it comes to mold removal. Call us today!

water damaged hardwood floors

How to Save Water Damaged Hardwood Floors

Using hardwood floors in the house has many advantages. They are easy to clean, strong and durable and they look elegant. However, wood flooring is not suitable in wet areas as it is vulnerable to moisture and humidity. Water is the wood’s biggest enemy. When the water sits on the hardwood floor, the wood will absorb the water which causes cupping and discoloration. 

Save Water Damaged Hardwood Floors

When water damage occurs in a house with wooden flooring, homeowners need to act fast to avoid serious damage on the floor. Here are some things homeowners to save water damaged hardwood floors:

1. Find the Source

The first thing that you need to do is to find the source of the water and stop it. If the water continues to penetrate the wood, it won’t fix the problem at all. When the source is not found, the drying up process would be of no use. 

2. Get rid of hardwood water. 

Removing water is the next step in saving water damaged hardwood floor. You can use mops, old towels, and floor squeegees to remove standing water. If you have a wet/dry shop vacuum in the house, you can also use that. Remove any other wet items such as rugs and carpet from the area to fully remove the water.

3. Clean and Disinfect the Floor. 

Mix mild detergent and disinfectant with clean water in a bucket. Scrub the floor using the solution. Don’t pour the water to the floor as it will add up to the problem. Clean the floor thoroughly to remove the dirt and other organic materials that aid mold growth. 

4. Apply Treatment to Moldy Areas. 

Check all the areas if they are free from mold. If molds colonize a small area, it is still easy to remove.  First, scrub the surface mold stain with a mixture of 1qt. Water and 1/2 cup bleach mold cleaner to kill the mold. After scrubbing the area, let the solution penetrates the surface and dry. However, when the area is big, it is necessary to call mold remediation experts to help you with the problem. They have all the necessary tools and knowledge to fully remove the mold

5. Dry the Floor

Dry the floor naturally using fans on full blast. If it is not raining, opening the window will help dry the floor. Use dehumidifier to pull out the moisture. Make sure to dry the floor naturally as fast drying process would lead to cracks on the floor. Do not apply heat on the flooring. It may cause cupping and other problems. You can use a moisture meter to monitor the moisture level of the floor. Drying hardwood floor completely takes weeks. Leave your dehumidifier active until there is no water left in the area. 

Call a Professional for Help!

Drying hardwood floor takes time and can be daunting for homeowners. It is important to do the process accordingly to ensure that the wood can still last for a long time. If you are unsure about what to do, it is best to call a professional water damage restoration company. They have the equipment and tools necessary to clean and dry up your place.

carpet with stains because of water damage

How To Dry Carpet After Water Damage

Carpet is one of the most common and trendy floorings you can see in many homes. Aside from the beauty and accent it gives, it also provides safety to the occupants. But, this type of flooring is more difficult to handle, especially when water is the culprit of the damage. 

Carpet is absorbent in nature. Because of that, even a small amount of water can bring danger to your carpet. Water damaged carpet is known to be destructive. It can bring harmful effects to your property and your health.

Drying A Water-Damaged Carpet

If you attempt to dry your water damaged carpet, keep in mind that acting fast is vital. A water damaged carpet, if damped for a longer period, has a great chance of attracting mold growth. Mold is very dangerous and could lead you to serious health problems.

Assess the Water Involved

Before taking any steps in fixing your water damaged carpet, understanding the source of the water is essential. You don’t know what is in your carpet. Be sure to keep yourself protected when evaluating the situation

If Category 1 water or clean water (water from broken pipes, supply lines, and rain or snow) is the source of the water damage, it is safe and easy to clean. Yet, when the water contains floodwater, your carpet is unsalvageable. It has to be discarded immediately. Floodwaters contain contaminants that are toxic and harmful to humans, which could even lead to killing a person.

If you are unsure of the situation, call in professionals to handle the situation.

Start Drying the Damaged Carpet As Soon As Possible

As mentioned above, acting fast is vital. Drying your water damaged carpet as early as possible could prevent you from having severe damage and health issues. Plus, it could help you save money for water damage restoration and mold removal services. Follow these simple tips in drying out water damaged carpet;

  • Remove the excess water.

    Of course, first, it is necessary to stop water from flowing into the damaged carpet. Once you are done with it, remove the excess water. Use a wet vacuum to do the job. Wet vacs are an effective tool in removing any excess water or moisture on your carpet. Though using them requires a lot of time, they are inexpensive and you can rent one easily if you have to just use it once. If needed, vacuum the same area several times to fully remove excess water. 

  • Move the Wet Carpet from the Floor.

    Moving your water damaged carpet from your flooring can prevent you from having another type of damage or could lessen the amount of the damage. Carefully pull it away. Avoid using too much force to keep the carpet intact. 

  • Discard and Replace Carpet Padding.

    Never use the same carpet padding once it gets wet. Carpet padding cannot dry out. Once it soaks up water, it will remain damp. And, dampness will then cause mold growth that could lead to nasty odor and an unsafe environment. Pull up the carpet and remove the padding. Discard it right away. Replace a new one. 

  • Dry the Carpet and the Flooring.

    It’s now time to dry out the carpet and the flooring. Use a high powered blower, fans or dehumidifiers to help in the drying process. You can still use a regular fan, however, drying will take longer. Keep the blowers or fans working until the carpet and the flooring are fully dry. If the weather permits, open your windows so that air can circulate properly inside your house. Do this only when it’s not raining or humid outside.

Sanitize Your Water Damaged Carpet

Even if you have dried out your carpet, you are still uncertain whether your carpet is safe to use. There could be some germs or bacteria that still stick on it. Sanitize your carpet with an anti-microbial cleaner to make sure that it is free from stains and bacteria.

Never use bleach in cleaning your carpet. Bleach can damage the rear part of your carpet and the sub-flooring beneath it. 

Dry Your Carpet Once More

After applying any type of anti-microbial cleaner, let it dry again. When sanitizing and drying are done properly, your carpet should not have any signs of mold growth. Stay alert until you are truly sure that it is free from any danger. Then, bring it back to its place.

Call Professional Water Damage Restoration 

Dealing with water damaged carpet can be very dangerous and requires a lot of effort and proper equipment. Drying, if not done properly, could lead to a more serious situation. Thus, letting professionals handle this problem is your best option.

Professional water damaged restoration company has enough equipment and advanced skills to save your water damaged carpet and prevent the severe issue to happen.

Let Superior Restoration help you. We are a team of professionals that handle all sorts of fire, water and mold issues. Call 951-301-2123 to talk to our staff and give you ideas about our restoration services.

Mold Remediation as A Solution to The Growing Mold Problems

Molds are types of fungi that usually grows on surfaces inside one’s property due to water interaction or excessive moisture. 

However, although some types of mold are normally harmless, there are some types that can cause severe health issues in anyone. According to the EPA, one of the most common causes of molds are allergies and can be a top reason for asthma symptoms. Furthermore, molds in one’s property might also lead to irritation of the eyes, nose, and throat and, worst can also cause serious lung issues even if the person involved is not allergic. In line with this, mold growth in the house or property should be treated as a serious issue and should not be, in any way, ignored.

As for the fact that molds can be found everywhere, the problem of its growth arises, most especially when the growth begins inside the house. This is usually caused by the moisture that the mold spores found to begin to grow. The extremely common reasons for mold growth inside one’s property are roof leaks, pipe leaks, high humidity levels, and floods.

Mold requires spores (serves as their ‘seeds’), favorable temperatures, nutrient supply, and moisture. Molds, like plants, grow by spreading and releasing its mold spores. However, if the conditions for the molds are unfavorable, mold will be dominant and release spores into the air to find a suitable environment for their growth and survival.

Moreover, these conditions can lead to mold growth subjected to water damages within the span of 24 to 48 hours. The affected materials or appliances should be dried as quickly as possible to prevent germination and subsequent mold growth. This mold growth can result from inadequate design, installation, and operation of materials and appliances used, maintenance of the structure and lack of adequate ventilation in the building. Among the conditions mentioned, moisture is the only condition a homeowner can really control.

Mold Remediation: The Basics and Process

Molds should be removed by a trained professional accredited by organizations such as RIA, IAQA, and IICRC. However, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) any area subjected to mold growth less than ten (10) square feet (or about 3 feet by 3 feet) can be remediated by the homeowner. If the affected area succeeded the 10 square feet policy, the homeowner or the building administrator must contact a mold remediation contractor.

On the off chance that the mold growth occurs inside a homeowner’s property that requires larger immediate removal or mold remediation, it is important for the homeowner to know the basics of mold remediation.

Basic Mold Remediation Directions:

  1. Determine the size of the area that will need to be contained. Set up your containment using zip walls and 6-mil poly sheeting.
  2. Determine the size of air scrubber needed (4-6 air exchanges per hour).
  3. Install air scrubber into containment, duct clean air from the scrubber out of the containment area to keep the containment under negative pressure.
  4. Vacuum all surfaces in the containment area using a HEPA vacuum.
  5. Remove all porous surfaces (drywall, carpet, etc.) with mold contamination. The material that is being removed should be placed in contractor bags and disposed of in normal garbage receptacles (e.g., dumpsters). Bags should be sealed before leaving the containment area.
  6. Vacuum all surfaces in the containment area using a HEPA vacuum.
  7. Physical mold removal:
  1. Using a cleaner, all surfaces with visible mold should be scrubbed or sanded to remove some of the mold stainings. Without heavy sanding, some of these stains might not be removed. Staining is not an indication of active mold growth.
  2. Using a disinfectant, wipe or spray all surfaces to ensure any remaining (hidden) mold is dead. This will not preclude any health problems from the mold, but it will keep it from further growth.
  1. Again, vacuum all surfaces in the containment area using a HEPA vacuum.
  2. A mold-preventative coating can/may be applied to further ensure no future mold growth.
  3. For larger jobs (over 32 sq ft of contamination) it may be required to:
  • Have a controlled egress area.
  • Have an independent hygienist write a protocol.
  • Have an independent hygienist do post clearance testing.

With regards to the increase of mold growth in the house, EPA provided the necessary simple steps or process of mold removal or mold remediation.

Process: Steps to Mold Remediation

  1. Containment and Ventilation. This is the first step, and probably the most important step in the process of mold remediation. The installation and use of adequate ventilation and air filtration devices (AFDs) including air scrubbers are required to keep and ensure that the existing mold spores that are disturbed and become airborne will not be spreading to any uninfected area through the air.
  2. Cleaning and Disinfection. Next is the stage that includes the actual remediation, removal, and disposal of materials subjected to molds—the cleaning and disinfection stage. Where the trained professional or technicians will apply biocide, fungicide or moldicide solutions to the infected areas.
  3. Fixing the Source of the Mold. This is where the technicians will address any moisture or humidity concerns that cause the growth of molds within the property or area. This includes a loose bathroom fan duct that is running into an attic, in this case, the broken fan duct may be fixed. For cases with more involved repairs, the mold remediation company could hire a sub-contractor to recommend to the homeowner.
  4. Encapsulate the Unremoved Molds. Molds that are not removed through the process of mold remediation should be encapsulated by paint or a similar material. The encapsulation process is an approved method for dealing with mold in a house.

Molds are complex. It may start from a small area but can form larger colonies indoors under appropriate conditions. It is important to not ignore the significance of a proper building or house maintenance at all times.

Worried About Water Damage? Secure Your Crawl Space!

Water damage is not an easy thing to handle. It can cost you hundreds and thousands of repairs and could even affect your health condition. That is why protecting your home from any flood or standing water is really crucial.

Secure Your Crawl Space

Your crawl space is one of the areas in your home that is often overlooked, due to the thinking that this is not an important room of your house. Let us remind you that a crawl space is also a room for many important details of your home, such as electric wires and pipings. It is also important for any maintenance and helps in promoting healthy air circulation in your home.

What Makes Water Get Into Your Crawl Space?

  • Improper Grading on your Property  

One of the leading causes of water standing in your crawl space is the improper grading or slope surrounding your home. If the land is not properly sloped, the tendency is, groundwater or rainwater has its chance to enter to the bottom part of your home, ruining its foundation and will eventually travel to your crawl space, making it their home.  

  • Clogged Downspouts or Gutters

Gutters and downspouts are used to carry out water to the drainage, but if any of them are clogged, water will just travel at the base structure of your home. And, if a large quantity of water is collected, it will then penetrate to your crawl space.

  • Over-watering Your Plants and Shrubs

Aside from the fact that over-watering can kill your plants and shrubs, and when grading system is also poor, over-watering your shrubs and plants could lead water to overflow to your crawlspace. In the end, you will just notice that you’ve got a pond in your crawl space.

  • Broken or Leaking Water Lines

Your home is surrounded by different water lines. Wherever the location of the broken line is, water can flow down to the base part of your home, and will eventually live in your crawl space.

 

How to Secure Your Crawlspace

Remember that your crawl space is an important part of your home. Thus keeping it in its operational state is vital. Crawl space flooding can be prevented when certain measures are done. Such as

Outside of Your Crawl space

Make Sure Your Gutters and Downspouts are Working Properly

Your gutters and downspouts play an important role every time it rains. They are used to properly flow water away from your home and prevent water to damage your foundation, ending up pooling around your crawl space. Make sure that they are both properly working and installed. Check and clean them at least once a month.

For better drainage system, downspouts should be extended at least three feet from your home or you can bury downspout extensions six feet or deeper into the ground and cover it with topsoil.

Install A French Drainage System

French drains are one of the most effective ways of channelling standing water in the basement of your foundation to the street or a dry well. It may sound fancy, but in reality, it isn’t. Moreover, they are also useful for homes that are situated in a flat or oddly shaped lot, making water to flow directly to your home.

Properly Grade Your Lawn

Proper grading is vital in keeping the drainage of water away from your house foundation. Aside from the fact that proper grading can prevent water to sit in your crawl space, it can also prevent leaking, cracking your foundation and rotten any wooden structure of your home. And, even prevent you from costly foundation repairs.

Ideally, the soil around your home should slope away at least three feet from your home.  

Inside The Crawl Space

Install A Crawl Space Vapor Barrier

Though the vapor barrier doesn’t have anything to do in preventing crawl space to get flooded, it works in controlling moisture issues in your crawl space. Addressing the issue is important in the mitigation process. It is something you can do with your own hands, but if you feel like you can’t do it effectively, you may ask professionals to do it properly.

Install A Sump Pump

Sump pumps are useful in removing accumulated water in your crawl space and even in your basement. They collect the groundwater that is pooling around the area and pump out the water away from it. This machine is really effective in preventing water damage in your crawl space, that is why it is important to make sure that they can function properly when in need. Moreover, use alternative power supply and test it occasionally.

How Can Flooded Crawl Space Damage Your Home?

Below is the list of the downsides of a flooded crawl space.

  • The water that pools in the crawl space can get contaminated and could cause musty odor.
  • A flooded crawl space can damage fibreglass insulation. When the humidity level is high, the moisture will drench the fibreglass and will eventually lose its capacity as insulation.
  • A flooded crawl space, together with moisture and darkness can attract insects and pests to live in your crawl space, infesting and rotting wood and other materials.

Already has Water Damage?

Don’t take it for granted. Act fast. Ignoring the damage could not only result in severe water damage but could also lead to mold growth, which is really harmful to your health. Need help with the water damage recovery? Contact Superior Restoration Temecula.

Water Damage Insurance Coverage: Understanding whether the type of water damage is covered or not

Your homeowner insurance gives you and your property protection caused by several culprits, such as severe weather and unexpected disasters. For most incidents, it is easy to understand which of these situations are covered by your insurance company. However, when it comes to water damage, it becomes complicated. There are many factors involved in determining whether this source of water damage is covered or not. As a homeowner, it is important that you understand what is covered by the insurance company. Let us walk you through what type of water damage can be covered or not.

What Are Some Of The Sources Of Water Damage?

Water damage can happen any time, even without the presence of severe weather. As a homeowner, it is vital that you know what causes water damage in your home because not all sources of water damage can be covered in your insurance policy. Thus, it is your responsibility to prevent your home from being damaged by water. Let us refresh your memory of some of the sources of water damage.

  •    Severe weather such as thunderstorms or excessive rain
  •    Sewer backup from the municipal water system
  •    Water seepage into your home (burst pipes, cracked walls, leaking roof)
  •    Overland flooding

So, What is Really Covered By My Insurance Company?

This is now an important question for a homeowner.

Unfortunately, not all types of water damage are covered by your insurance company. Most standard insurance policies will cover water damage that is sudden and accidental. This means the damage was caused by unexpected events and there were no manifestations that it could be a potential problem or it was not caused by a wear and tear situation.

A good example of this is when sudden wind damaged your roof and resulted in accidental water damage to your attic and ceiling. Your insurance will cover the damage.

However, if your insurance company noticed that your roof had some signs of wear and tear and was not maintained properly, it is most likely that your claim would be denied.

Here are some other types of water damage that your insurance policy will cover;

  •    Damaged due to severe winter, your pipes froze and burst causing the water to spread in your home and resulted to damage.
  •    Damaged caused by severe weather such as rain or snow
  •    Overflow from toilet, sink, bathtubs, and others
  •    Damaged associated by extinguishing the fire
  •    Vandalism or malicious activity

What Types Of Water Damage Are Not Covered By My Insurance?

If the water damage is considered gradual, it will not be covered. If the water touched the ground first and flowed into your home, it is also not covered by your insurance company.

It is important that you know which type of water damage is covered by your insurance. Review what is written on your policy and if necessary, add extensions or adjust your insurance policy depending on your needs.

Water damage Due To Lack of Preventive Maintenance

Your home is built with different pipes and wires and is equipped with some machines that are susceptible to water damage. As a homeowner, it is your responsibility to check, repair or replace any areas or parts of your home that require the action. Your insurance company will deny your claim if they see signs of lack of preventive maintenance or an act of negligence.

Water Damage Due to Sewer Backups

This is also one of the types of water damage that will not be covered. If you find your house prone to this kind of situation, you may consider adding it to your insurance policy.

Water Damage Caused by Gradual Leak or Seepage

This damage includes water seeping through cracks or leaky proofs coming in around your foundation or exterior of your house. This amount of water can gradually damage your property. It is important to act immediately, so insurance might consider covering the damage.

The Source of the Water Damage

In most case, your insurance company will not cover the source of the water damage- such as a faulty hot water tank. However, areas that were affected by the water damage will be covered by your insurance company.

Flood

Standard homeowner insurance policy does not cover water damage made by rising water, rainwater, surging river, and groundwater. For this kind of scenario, be prepared by getting a separate insurance flood policy.

 

What Is Included in Your Insurance Coverage

Knowing the coverage of insurance policy is very important, to protect you against loss due to water damage. Review your insurance policy from time to time or you may contact your insurance broker to give you a full explanation of your insurance coverage. Below are the two types of insurance coverage that is applicable to water damage issues;

Dwelling Coverage

Your homeowner insurance policy will pay for the repair or replacement of the structure of your home if the damage was caused by the covered cause. In most cases, the detached structure of your home such as the garage, chimney, and others are also included in your insurance coverage.

Coverage For Your Personal Belongings

Your personal property includes your furniture, clothes, personal property, and others are covered if they were affected or damaged due to the mentioned covered causes. In the case of expensive items, such as jewelry’, art, collectibles and so on, are also covered but there is a certain limit imposed.

 

What To Do When You Have Water Damage

The first thing that you have to do is to shut down the source of the water. Check the leak in the area where water damage happened. On top of this call your insurance company immediately to start the process of your claim. Then, take photographs, videos, and inventory of the items or areas of your home that has been damaged. You may include the brand, price, and age of your personal belongings.

Your insurance company might not be able to come to you right away, so it is important to keep documenting the damage or further damage and keep your communication constant. In case the damage is getting worse, you may consider contacting a local restoration company.

We Can Help You With Your Insurance Claim Procedure

We know that filing an insurance claim is stressful. It would take you a lot of time and may require you to give a full documentation of what happened. Superior Restore professionals have an in-depth knowledge of insurance claim procedure. Since we are approved to work with all insurance company, we can help you make the process stress free. If you encounter water damage today, contact us.

Protect Your House From Water and Fire Damage with these Smart Devices

Water, fire or any type of disaster could happen any time and at times, you have no control over how they could bring damage to your property. Thankfully, smart technology has evolved over the years to help you protect your home.  There are smart home innovations that are designed to sense danger and notify you in short order before any uncertainties get worse.

They function using your WI-FI network connection and send you notifications of any danger to your phone. Install these devices to keep you, your family and your home safe and away from danger even when you are miles away.

 

  • Water Leak Detectors

 

Whether it is just a small water leak or a burst pipe, water can generate serious ample damage to your property. Water damage becomes severe if immediate action is not taken place. A water leak is often times overlooked as it does not make any noise. When water spread, it can damage the structure of your property and could give chances for mold to grow. Luckily, there are smart water leak detectors. Water leak detectors can beam real-time alerts to your phone the moment the leak is detected.

Water leak detectors are battery-powered leak devices that are placed to areas vulnerable to water leaks such as pipes, sump pumps, and appliances like washing machine, sinks, and toilets. Simply integrate this device with your smartphone to send you alerts for any suspected water disaster, whether you are at home or away. By this, you can act fast and prevent water damage. You can also equip your house with full flood monitoring system with automatic shut –off valves that you can remotely control.  

 

  • Smart Smoke Detectors

 

Smoke detectors have been developed over the years and have done a handful of actions to prevent any fire disaster.  The new smart smoke detectors do not just sound an alarm when it detects smoke but also send notifications to your smartphone. More than that, this device has the ability to detect problems of the unit itself such as a low battery.  Connecting this device to your security system allows you and even the Fire Department to get alerts of the incident. You can also integrate this device with a camera to see footage of fire or where and how the fire started. There are also models of smoke detectors that have a feature of detecting Carbon Monoxide.

 

  • Smart Heat Detectors

 

Just like smart smoke detectors, a heat detector is a device that is designed to send an alarm to prevent fire disaster. It can be linked to other heat detectors and smoke detectors. Let's say a heat detector in your kitchen detected a rise of temperature in the area, all the other heat detectors would get the signal and send an alarm.

Heat detectors can be classified in two ways, “rate-of-rise” and “fixed temperature”. Fixed temperature detectors send an alarm when the temperature reaches the pre-set level, while the rate-of-rise detectors send an alarm when there is a rapid increase in temperature. Most heat detectors can function in both ways.

 

  • Smart Batteries

 

Buying a new set of smart smoke detectors could be more expensive, instead, consider buying smart batteries to keep your detectors working. These smart batteries can send you updates to your smartphone when one of your smoke detectors is out of order or has a low battery. These smart detectors can also be used with heat and carbon monoxide detectors.

 

  • Smart Stovetop Fire Prevention

 

This is another kind of helpful device that could protect your home from fire. According to NFPA, one of the leading causes of home structure fires are cooking fires. Cooking fires happen when cooking food is left unattended. With smart stovetop device, you can get a reminder that you left the stove on. This device is designed with a sensor motion function that tells if you are in the kitchen. Once the sensor has detected that you are not in the kitchen, it will start its countdown and eventually shut off the stove when you are not back.

 

  • Smart Outlets or Plugs

 

Basically, the last thing you do when leaving your house for a short trip or a long vacation is checking whether your appliances have been turned off or not. Gratefully, technology has developed another device that allows you to check the power status of your device or appliances. Smart outlets can be used with an app on your smartphone and can give you access to turn off or turn on the outlets, anytime and anywhere where you can connect to the internet. Smart outlets can also be controlled by voice when it is linked with smart devices like Google Home and Amazon Echo

Adding these devices to your home can prevent you from hundreds and thousands of dollars of damage. They are brilliant as you can get access with them anytime and anywhere using your smartphone and an internet connection.

Yet, these devices cannot guarantee full protection. Fire and water disaster could happen anytime and it is vital to act fast in order to lessen the amount of the damage. Call professionals when emergencies arise. At Superior Restore, professionals are ready to handle emergencies 24/7. They act fast and respond promptly when needed. Our professionals are fully equipped with proper knowledge and skills in dealing with fire and water damage restoration. We are one of the leading restoration companies in Southern California. You can contact us anytime at 951-221-8265.