Recent Posts

What To Do if You Find Water in Your Light Fixtures

10/12/2020 (Permalink)

Water in a light fixture Water in light fixtures is a common way that homeowners realize there is a larger problem with their pipes

Safety Steps To Keep In Mind If You Find Water In Your Light Fixtures

It can be difficult to catch water leaks in your home in Lake Point, TX before they cause damage. Because pipes are hidden by the walls, you often won't know there is a problem until you see water in light fixtures or soaking through your ceiling. Because electricity and water don't mix, here are some important safety steps to keep in mind if you find water pooling in your lights.

1. Shut Off the Breaker
As soon as you notice water in your lights, don't touch them or the switch that controls them. Water conducts electricity very well, so it's easy for you to be shocked. Instead, go turn off the breaker for the room where the water is. If you see ceiling damage in other rooms, shut it off for those as well. To be entirely safe, it's a good idea to turn it off for the whole house, if possible.

2. Shut Off the Water
Once you shut off the electricity, it's time to stop the leak by turning off the water main. This may be an inconvenience, but it's better than having that water in light fixtures or coming through your ceiling.

3. Call the Professionals
You're going to need a plumber and an electrician to come in and fix both your leak and your light fixture. Depending on the amount of damage, you may also need to call a water damage remediation company after the electrician and plumber solve your immediate problems. Make sure you explain the whole situation to both of them, though, so that your electrician will know if he needs to wait for the plumber to finish before he can safely replace your light.
Water in light fixtures is a common way that homeowners realize there is a larger problem with their pipes. It can be dangerous if handled incorrectly, though, so make sure you follow these steps to keep yourself out of harm's way.

Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Mold Damage?

9/28/2020 (Permalink)

Document of Homeowners Insurance Policy for background Homeowners insurance can protect your residential property from different types of damage

Homeowners insurance can protect your residential property from a lot of different disasters and types of damage. Despite how common residential fungus growth is, many insurance policies still don't cover mold damage directly. Read on to see whether your home in Club Creek, TX, is protected against mold damage.

When You Are Covered

The majority of insurance policies cover mold damage if, and only if, the damage was caused by what's known as a "covered peril." A covered peril is essentially any type of disaster or damage that the insurance policy already covers. Here are a few examples:

  • Lightning strikes
  • Fire damage
  • Theft
  • Malicious mischief, or other types of vandalism
  • Damage caused by vehicles
  • Frozen pipes
  • Falling objects

Each insurance policy is different, so it's likely that yours might include accidents that are not listed above. It's important to check your insurance policy just to make sure. If the fungus growth is a direct result of any covered perils in your policy, then you're covered. However, if the mold is a result of your personal carelessness, or if you leave it unreported for too long, then you're on your own when it comes to paying for the damage.

When You Aren't Covered
There are a few loopholes you can employ if your specific policy doesn't cover mold damage. If you want to be absolutely safe, you always have the option to purchase a separate mold insurance policy. This is a separate policy endorsement that adds mold coverage to your existing homeowners insurance policy. Depending on your home's specific mold risk -- this is determined by where you live, how often you typically deal with mold damage and other various factors -- you may end up paying between $500 and $1,500 annually for separate mold coverage.
Fungus growth is a very common occurrence that the majority of homeowners do have to handle at some point. It may be beneficial to purchase a separate policy endorsement to make sure that your property is covered, just in case your existing policy is reluctant to protect you. If you do discover mold damage in your home, you should contact mold remediation experts immediately.

Top 3 Causes of Home Fires

9/17/2020 (Permalink)

Stove with pan being flammable on food Cooking is the number one cause of home fires and injuries

Here Are The Top Three Causes Of Home Fires

No one expects to experience a home fire during their lifetime. Unfortunately, home fires are more common than most people think. According to the National Fire Protection Association, between 2011 and 2015 there were about 358,500 residential fires in the United States each year. One of the best things you can do to prevent a fire is knowing what causes them. 

1. Cooking
Did you know that cooking is the number one cause of home fires and injuries? Most of these fires can be prevented by cooking responsibly:

  • Stay in the kitchen when you’re cooking. If you need to leave for longer than a few minutes, turn the stove off.
  • Do not cook if you’re drowsy or intoxicated.
  • Check food regularly when simmering or baking.
  • Use a timer on the stove or your phone to remind you when food is done.
  • Keep flammable materials away from the stove, including oven mitts, wooden utensils, and kitchen towels.

If you have a small grease fire, smother the flames by putting a pot lid over the pan and turn off the burner. If the fire is in the oven, turn off the oven and don’t open the door. If you have any doubts about handling a small home fire, get out of the house and call 911.

2. Heating
Fire causes also include heating equipment. During the winter months, many people use fireplaces and portable heaters to stay warm. Unfortunately, these heating elements can be hazardous if they aren’t properly used and maintained. Always use the correct type of fuel for your heater and keep items, children, and pets at least three feet away.

3. Electrical
From lights to computers, electricity definitely makes our lives easier. Unfortunately, the third cause of fire in the home is electrical. To avoid the possibility of an electrical fire, have all electrical work done by a licensed professional. If you have any problems with circuit breakers tripping or discolored wall outlets, contact an electrician.
If you do experience the unfortunate event of a home fire, contact a fire restoration company. Their trained restoration specialists have the tools and skills to assist you with fire cleaning in your Crystal Lakes, TX, home.

The Pros and Cons of Flood Insurance

9/8/2020 (Permalink)

Flood insurance form on a table with a book. It is important to purchase flood insurance for your business

For many companies, the decision on whether or not to buy flood insurance is a difficult one. After all, most companies have a strong commercial insurance policy that covers many perils. In most cases, though, damage from a flood will not be covered by the regular policy. For insurance purposes, a flood is described by FEMA as a "temporary condition of partial or complete inundation of 2 or more acres of normally dry land area or of 2 or more properties..." In some situations, the decision of buying flood insurance is made for business owners. If the owner has a federally insured mortgage and the property is situated in a flood plain, a flood policy is mandatory.

The Pros of Flood Insurance

Most business owners purchase insurance for floods from the National Flood Insurance Program. This federal program provides payments for floods in Lakeview, TX, and elsewhere in the U.S. It provides the following benefits to policy holders:

  • Peace of mind
  • Payments of up to $500,000 for structures
  • Payments of up to $500,000 for belongings
  • Prospects of faster recoveries for businesses
  • Transfer of some of the risks to the government

Even in years without a damaging flood, the NFIP allows business owners to better plan expenses. By reducing uncertainty, a company might not need to set aside large amounts of discretionary funds.

The Cons of Flood Insurance
Some business owners might feel that paying for commercial insurance and flood insurance is too expensive. They might also feel that the payment limits on federal flood insurance are too low. In any event, floods across the U.S. can often be devastating. They also often require the services of a professional storm mitigation company. A fast response by experienced professionals can limit damages to a building and its belongings. Vigorous action by trained technicians is another way a company can quickly rebound from the expenses associated with storms.

Protective Equipment Necessary for Tackling a Mold Problem

8/17/2020 (Permalink)

Two workers wearing protective gear Acquire the appropriate gear to protect yourself

Make Sure You Acquire The Following Protective Gear

The desire to immediately jump in and start attacking a mold issue is understandable. However, mold can be dangerous to your health so it's important to protect yourself before you charge into battle. The good news is that all of the gear on this list can be found for a reasonable price at your local hardware store. If your home in Waterford Estates, TX, is suffering from mold growth, make sure you acquire the following protective gear before attempting to resolve the issue.
1. Protective eyewear: Safety goggles will help keep your eyes safe, not only from mold spores but also from the combative chemicals you're using to clean the mold. If your remediation process involves cutting into the drywall, these can help keep those stray particles out as well.

2. Full-coverage clothing and/or Tyvek suit: The primary concern here is protecting exposed skin from harmful chemicals and mold spores. If you want to go the extra mile (and pretend you're in Breaking Bad), you can opt to wear a disposable Tyvek suit.

3. Shoe covers: These little paper booties will prevent mold spores from hitching a ride on your shoes and contaminating the rest of your house. Just make sure to remove them before entering uncontaminated areas.

4. Respirator: This is, by far, the most important piece of equipment you can wear. Inhaling mold spores is detrimental to your health, so you want to make sure you have some equipment that can filter them out of the air. It's important to get an actual respirator; a regular surgical mask isn't equipped to handle mold spores.

5. Rubber gloves: Protect your hands from mold and other harmful cleaning chemicals with rubber or latex gloves. Make sure the gloves fit your hands properly for maximum protection.
Acquire the appropriate gear to protect yourself before charging in to deal with a mold problem. If you find that the issue is beyond your abilities, make sure you contact mold remediation experts to help handle the problem.

3 Water Issues Found in Commercial Buildings

8/17/2020 (Permalink)

Water Pipe Break Broken water pipe in a Windsor Park, TX commercial building

Three Common Water Issues In Commercial Buildings

Owning and maintaining a commercial property in Windsor Park, TX, can be profitable because it tends to offer a higher return on investment than residential properties. Properly caring for your commercial building should be a top priority. Various tasks include maintaining the exterior and interior of the building. Water damage caused by a variety of sources, such as leaking pipes, can be expensive to repair. Here are three common water issues in commercial buildings.

1. Damaged Water Pipes
A common water problem in commercial buildings is damaged or broken water pipes. While pipes are supposed to last for many years, the type of material, age, and lack of maintenance may result in a shorter lifespan. Some signs that you might have damaged pipes include bulging walls or the presence of water stains. If you have an obvious pipe break, major water damage can occur if immediate action isn’t taken. Contact a commercial restoration specialist right away to help minimize harm and financial loss.

2. Water Leaks
Due to the large size of commercial buildings, water leaks often go unnoticed until they become a major problem. Water leaks can happen from a water heater, on your ceiling, around toilets, and from leaking pipes under sinks. Pinhole-sized leaks are the enemy of most property owners due to their discreet nature. Fortunately, you can prevent most water leaks by keeping a close eye on your commercial property. A few preventative measures include having the roof regularly inspected, checking under sinks, and installing smart water sensors.

3. Deteriorated Sewer Lines
While sewer lines are designed to last for over twenty years, there are some circumstances that lead to early deterioration and damage. Sewer gas odors, frequent toilet backup, and clogging of drains compromise the quality of sewer lines.
Appropriately maintaining your commercial property is important to your financial investment. Identify common water issues, such as leaking pipes, and take steps to prevent them from occurring.

FAQs About FEMA Individual Assistance

8/5/2020 (Permalink)

FEMA app in play store. close-up on the laptop screen. Get the fema app with weather alerts for up to 5 locations, plus disaster resources and safety tips

The FEMA Individual Assistance Program

Navigating the aftermath of a storm can be a stressful time, especially if you face a lot of damages to your home in Duck Creek, TX. Here are some frequently asked questions about the FEMA Individual Assistance program to make finding coverage for your home repair less taxing.

1. Will FEMA Rebuild a Home the Way It Was?
FEMA provides financial assistance and services for individuals who have uninsured or underinsured expenses due to a natural disaster. However, it is not a substitute for an insurance policy. It merely helps you get back on your feet after a storm. The program is not designed to rebuild houses that have been destroyed.

2. What Assistance Is Available?
This program can provide grants to help you pay for temporary housing, emergency repairs, personal property losses, and medical and dental expenses that were a direct cause of a natural disaster. Other expenses that were a direct result from flood, wind, or other storm damage may also be covered under this program. For instance, you may have your professional storm cleanup and remediation costs covered.

3. What Happens After You Apply?
After you apply, you can monitor and adjust your application through the online portal. Once your application has been reviewed, a FEMA agent will contact you to set up a home inspection visit where they will take note of any storm-related damage. You will find out soon after if you have been approved or denied assistance by a letter in the mail. If you have been approved, you will receive a check or direct deposit with a letter explaining how you are supposed to use this money.
Whether you are dealing with flooding or high winds, if you have sustained damage due to a storm you may be eligible for assistance. While the Individual Assistance program does not replace an insurance policy, it can help individuals who face damage to property that is uninsured or underinsured.

Why Is It Important To Test for Black Mold?

7/21/2020 (Permalink)

Close-up of person hand wearing gloves measuring wetness of a moldy wall Mold testing in Towngate, TX

Tips To Help Protect Your Property

Mold can be a tricky pest to deal with. While you can detect some mold invasions easily using sight or smell, this isn't always the case. If you suspect that your home in Towngate, TX, has fallen victim to an infestation, then it's important to have a mold assessment performed. Use the following tips to help you protect your property:

Mold Test Options
There is no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to mold tests. There are many diverse species of black mold and mildew that can each affect your house in different ways. Because of this, it may be necessary to have several different tests performed.
There are three primary types of mold tests:

Testing in bulk: Professional mold testers take physical samples from your home to test in a laboratory. They assess them to identify both the concentration of spores and the type of mold present.
Testing the air: Mold assessment professionals collect samples of the air in your home and study them under a microscope in the lab. Air testing is useful when it comes to detecting the types of spores that are invisible to the naked eye.
Testing your surfaces: Professionals will swab surfaces, such as countertops, and assess them in the lab to determine the concentration of mold deposits in the house.

Why Mold Tests Are Important
Mold spores can be persistent. It's important to stay vigilant, especially if your home has had issues with black mold or mildew in the past. Different types of mold species can affect your home in different ways. Even if you can identify some types of mold easily, you may still find it necessary to seek help from professionals in order to conduct a complete investigation.
Conducting a mold assessment is only half the battle. If your investigation signals that mold is present, it is vital that you hire remediation specialists to help purge the spores from your home.

4 Benefits of Choosing the Right Fire Mitigation Team

7/2/2020 (Permalink)

Warehouse Fire Inside Commercial Fire in Garland, TX

4 Benefits of Choosing the Right Fire Mitigation Team

If your company experiences a fire in Garland, TX, you will have a full schedule during the recovery process. Taking care of the fire damage is one major job that you can delegate to a professional fire remediation franchise. If you choose a company that can only do part of the job, this still leaves you with a lot of phone calls and checking up on contractors. A full-service company, however, can run the complete operation and a project manager will contact you or your property manager as needed. The benefits of this approach are many.

1. Fire Cleanup. A fire in your building will leave a big mess. It's a tough job that should be left to highly-trained professionals. They will have to deal with fire damage in all of its various forms, including soot and smoke damage and smoke odors. With specialized equipment and advanced methods, the technicians will restore your property "Like it Never Even Happened."

2. Insurance. The right fire mitigation team will work closely with your insurance company. Technicians will send an itemized list of all the work being done and the documented damages to the insurance adjuster. This speeds up the entire process and allows the claims payments to run smoothly.

3. Rebuild. The fire restoration process often includes significant areas of a building that require rebuilding. Both the fire and the fire department can inflict heavy damage on your property, resulting in the need to restore drywall and other structural areas. A full-service restoration company can handle these concerns.

4. Communication. With a one-stop-shop, the lines of communication are much more streamlined. You only have one or two people you need to interact with, as opposed to several different contractors. This allows you more time to concentrate on your customers and your business.
Taking care of fire damage is a job for an industry leader. The right franchise can put your company back in business.

Advantages of the SERVPRO Process

6/30/2020 (Permalink)

SERVPRO Logo. When disaster strikes, SERVPRO has over 1700 local franchises available to help get your client's business property back to preloss condition.

When your insurance client's Garland, TX, commercial property has suffered a loss, you want to make sure an experienced restoration company is there to help with every step of the restoration process. From pretesting to the final walkthrough, SERVPRO will provide your client with industry-leading service.

There are several aspects of SERVPRO's process that ensure good outcomes at the right price. Some key elements of the restoration process are the following:

Quick response
Initial assessment
Commercial equipment
Industry best practices

SERVPRO has teams ready to respond 24/7. A quick response decreases the chances of further problems, such as mold growth from water damage. When the team arrives at the property, they will do an initial assessment, including pretesting to determine what can and cannot be salvaged. Because it is generally less expensive to repair items than replace them, knowing everything that can be restored will save your client money.

Additionally, SERVPRO uses commercial equipment and follows the restoration industry's current best practices to ensure your client receives the excellent service that has made SERVPRO an industry leader for decades.

One of the most important aspects of the restoration process is the communication triangle between the business owner, insurance agent and restoration team. Friendly and knowledgeable SERVPRO associates are available to answer all questions. Additionally, the Claims Information Center makes important documents relating to the insurance claim, including photographs and estimates, easily accessible to both the client and the insurance company. When everyone knows what is going on, the restoration process goes more smoothly for all involved.

When disaster strikes, SERVPRO has over 1700 local franchises available to help get your client's business property back to preloss condition. Pretesting and other services keep costs down and provide quality restoration while SERVPRO's focus on communication keeps all parties informed, ensuring that the process goes smoothly from initial assessment to final walkthrough.