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How Residential Property Managers Should Prepare for Hurricanes

1/8/2021 (Permalink)

a young man in suit in his office showing an insurance policy and pointing with a pen where the policyholder must to sign Check to see if your renters have proper insurance.

Below Are Some Hurricane Preparedness Tips

Limiting hurricane damage is an important part of residential property management. By taking control of the situation in advance, you can reassure your renters that their homes will be safe from an impending storm.

1. Plan Ahead
Hurricanes typically do not take a city by surprise. There is usually some warning that the storm is approaching. This should give you time to make a plan.
Start by creating a project team. Work with the team to assign responsibilities and roles to each employee. Make sure that every person in your organization knows what to do before, during, and after the storm.

2. Prepare Renters
Your tenants may feel anxious as the storm approaches. This is especially true for renters who have not experienced hurricanes in the past.
To reassure the residents, talk to them about your various policies. Tell the tenants if you plan to trim trees or perform other measures to limit hurricane damage. You should also make sure your renters know the local evacuation policy.
Check to see if your renters have proper insurance. Most renters' policies do not include flood coverage, so suggest that your tenants purchase separate insurance to cover this type of loss. Above all, your conversations with the renters should emphasize that you are trying to keep them safe.

3. Take Inventory
Finally, take time to gather all the information you will need prior to the storm. Keep updated phone numbers for the residents along with their emergency contacts. You should also store the name and number of a trusted cleanup and restoration company.
Proper preparation will not just reduce the hurricane damage to your Arp, TX, properties. It will also build up trust between you and your renters. This will be invaluable going forward. If any future issues arise, the tenants will trust your ability to handle the problems correctly.

What To Do When Your Water Heater Is Dying

1/6/2021 (Permalink)

Pipe wrench used to tighten water heater fitting Act quickly when you experience a broken water heater

Knowing what to do the moment you experience a leaking water heater in New Hope, TX, is critical to preventing further damage. Acting quickly may also help in stopping a flood of compromised water that can warp wooden floors, soak drywall, and require the attention of a residential damage repair expert. Here is how you can identify when yours is about to turn bad and what should be done in the event of a breakdown.

Signs of a Dying Water Heater

You may soon become the owner of a failed water heater if:

  • Your water’s temperature fluctuates
  • You often run out of hot water
  • Your water smells or displays odd colors
  • You hear concerning sounds

Suspicion-raising noises include cracking, popping, gurgling, and banging. A leaking water heater is a definite sign of imminent death. Be extra suspicious if your system exceeds the lifespan of 10 to 13 years.

How To Handle a Dying Water Heater
Your first step should be cutting the water supply. Look for a shutoff valve on your heater. If you are unable to locate one, switch your home’s primary water valve to the off position.
Next, drain your broken water heater. Screw a hose onto the drain valve, located at the bottom of your tank. Place the other end of the hose outside, in a sink or wherever impure water can be dumped.
Open the pressure relief valve. Be extra cautious, as water may be hot. Prevent an air vacuum from forming by flipping the relief valve handle before draining.
Finally, flush out your water heater with cold water. Open the valve and let the liquid run until it is clear. This step will eliminate any remaining sediment.
Even if a problem is not present, executing the preceding steps once a year helps reduce issues from developing. Stay vigilant with maintenance and maximize the odds your heater continues to run smoothly.
Failure to address a leaking water heater may cause a minor issue to grow into a much more serious matter. Treat yours with the care it demands and avoid a watery mishap.

Fire and Water Damage Restoration

1/6/2021 (Permalink)

Servpro of Tylers technician, team picture Contact a specialist in Flint, TX, immediately after damage is incurred

Fire and Water Damage Restoration

Obviously, a fire can damage your building and belongings, but the water used to put it out can be just as harmful. If your business in Flint, TX, experiences fire damage or water damage, a fire and water damage restoration specialist can help repair your building and belongings.

Damage From Fire
Fire can damage your property in a number of ways:

  • Structural damage
  • Burned belongings
  • Discoloration
  • Smoky odor
  • Soot

Damage From Water
Water from a fire hose or sprinklers can also cause damage in numerous ways:

  • Weakened foundation
  • Deterioration
  • Mold
  • Destruction of walls and flooring
  • Wet or stained upholstery

Repairing Damage From Fire
Fire damage restoration specialists can perform structural repairs, restore belongings, and repair damage from smoke. They will assess the damage, clean surfaces of smoke and soot, and repair and clean any salvageable belongings. They even have techniques for cleaning upholstery, repairing electronics, restoring documents and photos, and more.
There are many methods of cleanup that can be used depending on what is being repaired, ranging from dry wiping surfaces to submerging damaged items in a cleaning solution to freeze-drying documents. Your restoration specialist will be able to examine each damaged item to determine if it can be restored and what the best method of doing so is.

Repairing Damage From Water
The first thing a restoration service will do is remove water from the area. They will then dry the area and use dehumidifiers to remove additional water. They can also clean surfaces to prevent molding and erase discoloration. Doing this quickly will help minimize water damage.
Water and fire damage is reparable if you act quickly. Contacting a specialist in Flint, TX, immediately after damage is incurred will allow them to clean up water and soot and start restoring your property before too much harm is done. They can help you prevent molding and deterioration from excess water, repair structural damage from fire, and salvage belongings affected by water, fire, or smoke.

What To Do If a Burst Pipe Floods Your Business's Furnace

12/7/2020 (Permalink)

Flooded furnace No matter how stressful a furnace flood may seem, it isn't a death sentence for your building

Ways To Handle A Furnace Flood

Dealing with a burst pipe within your Whitehouse, TX, business property can be a hassle. It's even worse if the burst causes a furnace flood. Fortunately, this doesn't need to substantially deter your company. Here are a few steps to take after finding that your furnace was flooded.

Ensure Safety
The most important thing to do is provide for everyone's safety. First, assess the issue. If there is significant damage from the furnace flood, you'll want to clear the area completely. Make sure that no nearby electronics are turned on or used if submerged. These are some items to think about:

  • Cellphones
  • Desktops
  • Electric tools
  • Charging chords

Be sure that the furnace itself is left alone and isn't on.

Protect Important Items
Once you've made sure there's no immediate danger, you can work to keep your possessions safe. Any important documents or items should be kept far away from the flooded furnace. If something is already contaminated, don't put it in a clean area. You don't want more items to become damaged. There's also a chance the water could spread out and taint additional areas. Try to contain the flow by closing doors and stuffing towels in cracks.

Assess the Furnace
Next, you'll need an assessment done on your furnace. A water damage restoration company can tell you if your furnace can be restored. If not, you'll need to get a new one. Don't try to bargain just to save money. A damaged furnace can be highly dangerous and largely ineffective, so purchasing a new one is a worthy endeavor.

Get the Air Duct Cleaned
One of the last priorities you'll have is conducting air duct cleaning. If your heating, ventilating and air-conditioning systems are contaminated, they could easily spread dangerous pollutants through the air. Try not to use the HVAC system until this cleaning is completed, preferably by trained professionals.
No matter how stressful a furnace flood may seem, it isn't a death sentence for your building. There are ways to handle it effectively. As long as you stay focused and quick to act, your business likely won't experience too much interruption.

5 Solid Tips for Cleaning and Maintaining a Gas Range

12/7/2020 (Permalink)

Cleaning a gas stove with kitchen utensils Clean the grease off your stove top

Follow These Tips And You Might Avoid A Kitchen Fire

Fires in a home start in many different ways. You can bet that if something in your home in Bullard, TX, gets hot or has a flame it has the potential to start a fire. Not surprisingly, a gas range is capable of igniting items in your home. A few precautions can make your range safe and secure. 

1. Clean the grease - Over time, grease builds up on your range. At first, it can be difficult to notice, but if the range has not been wiped down for a period of time it can thicken and pose a fire danger. Clean the range with a cleaning agent that cuts through grease.

2. Wipe down the burners - A thorough range cleaning includes eliminating any combustible residue on the burners. This could be in the form of food items that are large enough to flare up and cause a fire risk. Also, be sure to clean the grates by soaking them in warm, soapy water.

3. Clean the oven - The oven portion of a gas range also demands attention. If a casserole spills over, the food remains in the oven can smoke and produce unpleasant odors. Use an oven cleaner to keep your oven as clean as the top of the stove.

4. Clear the area around the range - It is never a good idea to have a lot of clutter near the range. This includes items such as paper towels, dish rags or even flammable cleaning products.

5. Watch out for smoke - Any residue on your stove has the potential to send a smoke smell onto your curtains and other items. Be sure to clean all around your gas range.
If a fire does occur in your home, call for the services of a fire mitigation company. Trained technicians will arrive on site to clean your home of soot and smoke damage.

Places in Commercial Buildings Where Mold Is Likely To Grow

12/4/2020 (Permalink)

Mold growth on wall Mold growth in commercial property

Areas Where You Can Find Mold

Mold is in every building, a presence in the air people breathe even if its growth cannot be perceived by the naked eye. Once it becomes visible, it poses a risk overtime to the structural integrity of commercial property because it degrades construction materials like wood, glue and fabrics. This can be financially costly to business owners, so the discovery of mold growth usually prompts them to contact a professional cleanup service in Tyler, TX, for mold remediation. The fungus is not always in an easy to spot location, but there are certain areas where it is more likely to be found.

Locations With Moisture
Besides causing water damage, leaks and large inundations of water also cause harm by promoting mold growth. The invasive mold loves dark, wet and cold spaces. Any place with a lot of moisture and/or high humidity carries a high likelihood of having it, including public or employee bathrooms or around pipes.
Locations Associated With HVAC Systems
HVAC systems themselves and places connected to them are mold breeding grounds because of condensation. This includes:

  • Ducts attached to HVAC systems
  • HVAC terminal units
  • HVAC drain pans
  • Ceiling tiles around HVAC systems

Locations That Trap and Hold Water
Building materials often trap and hold water, creating environments conducive for the development of the ubiquitous fungus. Carpets and the lightless spaces behind walls, for example, often hold mold that goes unnoticed for long periods of time. It is also not uncommon to find it in insulation or wallboard.
Mold growth is bad news for a building. It eats away at materials, creating a need for repairs and, in some cases, replacement. It is also impossible to fully remove, though qualified professionals can remove the parts that can be seen. It is important to know where mold may grow, especially the less accessible areas that may not be looked at as often. This way such areas can be checked, and mold discovered and dealt with before spreading further.

Can a Fire-Damaged Home Ever Get Back to Normal?

12/2/2020 (Permalink)

home burned due to grease fire Fire damage in a Tyler, TX home

Four Steps Fire Restorers Use To Fix Fire Damage

Few things are more heartbreaking than going through a home fire. If your home in Texas has gone through ablaze, whether due to bad electrical wiring or oil fire, it may be a literal shell of its former self. You may wonder if your smoke-damaged home can ever get back to normal. Fortunately, by working with a fire restoration company, you can increase your chances of returning your home to its pre-burn state.

1. Survey the Damage

As you may know, fire restoration firms play no part in extinguishing your home’s blaze. Instead,
firefighters work hard to check your house for inhabitants and stop the destructive fire. After firefighters leave, restorers survey damage. They also board up doors and broken windows to keep criminals from causing additional damage.

2. Clean Personal Belongings

Because your smoke-damaged home is likely not safe or inhabitable, restorers remove salvageable
belongings to clean them off-site. Then, using specialized cleaning products and techniques, restoration technicians remove smoke from your keepsakes.

3. Restore Walls and Floors

Homeowners are often surprised to realize that fire-suppression activities can cause more damage than the fire itself. Restorers work hard to remedy smoke and water damage. Often, they must paint walls and renovate flooring.

4. Tackle Lingering Smoke Odor

Even weeks after a fire, smoke odor can linger in your smoke-damaged home. To encourage a fresh,
clean scent, restorers use ozone and thermal fogging techniques. They also spend time deep cleaning
your home’s heating and air conditioning systems. Likewise, with the help of high-powered filters and
fans, fire restoration techniques remove small soot particles from your home’s air. After workers finish,
homes often smell like they never burned.
Returning your fire-damaged home to normal involves more than simply cleaning soot from walls. When
you work with a skilled restoration service, you take advantage of expertise and equipment to recover
from your devastating Tyler, Texas home fire.

What to Do if Your Toilet Overflows

11/19/2020 (Permalink)

Overflowing broken toilet Overflowing toilet in Tyler, TX

Following These Steps After A Toilet Overflow Is Essential

Flooding and water damage is one of the most common insurance claims that homeowners in Tyler, TX, make. Even moderate amounts of water in your house can cause problems and ruin building materials, flooring, furniture, electronics and personal items. If sewer damage is included, there's an even more urgent need to handle the emergency. If you follow some key steps, you can minimize the damage and keep yourself safe. You'll also be able to get your home back in shape soon.

Try Some Unclogging Methods
A flooded toilet usually occurs when there is a clog somewhere in the toilet or farther down in the sewer line. The higher up the blockage is, the more likely you will be able to fix the issue on your own and allow the water to drain properly. For minor issues, here's what you can start with:

  • Grab a plunger and firmly press down to force the water pressure through the pipes, dislodging whatever is keeping the water from going down.
  • Place a plumber's snake deep into the toilet, grabbing anything that is blocking the toilet.
  • Use a drain cleaner to break up any debris in the toilet.

Move Items out of the Way
Once you have stopped the water from overflowing, you will need to address any damage and clean it up as quickly as possible. Wearing gloves and other protective gear, move any materials and belongings out of the bathroom that could have been in contact with the water. Anything with sewer damage could be harmful to you and ruin the item.

Clean up the Water
For small amounts of water on the floor, you can grab some towels and fans to dry up the area. However, a sewage company that specializes in emergency water cleanup is your best bet for widespread problems. The company will have the right equipment and tools to remove the water and thoroughly dry and sanitize your bathroom.
Sewer damage can be a serious issue to your health and safety. Following these steps after a toilet overflow is essential.

How Water Damage can Lead To Mold

11/19/2020 (Permalink)

wet kitchen floor, kitchen tiles removed due to water leak Mold growth after a water leak

Here Are A Few Things You May Want To Know

When it comes to mold prevention in your Troup, TX, home, understanding what causes mold can be important for mitigating possible damage. In many cases water-caused damage can become a prime culprit of why mold began to grow in the first place. Here are a few things you may want to know.

1. Mold Needs Water to Grow

It’s important to understand that mold growth requires at least some water. Mold grows best in dark, humid environments. This can be caused by damp materials, a puddle from a leak, or consistent condensation. In many cases an area of water caused damage can supply these conditions. This is why many professionals recommend fixing water damage as quickly as possible.

2. Damage Can Occur in Unexpected Spaces

Another aspect of mold prevention involves understanding that because water can seep into unexpected spaces, mold can grow there as well. This can include under flooring, between walls, and in cracks in tilework or stone. If you think mold may be present checking area like these can be important for finding the problem.

3. Preventing Water Damage Can Prevent Mold

Taking the steps needed to prevent water caused damage can also help you prevent possible mold in your home. Consider contacting a local water damage restoration service for help. These professionals are often trained to deal with a variety of damage types including water caused damage and mold. They can help you plan the appropriate mitigation steps for your home, and if damage does occur can restore your home.

When it comes to mold prevention, protecting your home from water caused damage can help. Water can create the moist environment mold needs to grow. Damage can also occurring spaces you might not consider inspecting. Taking the steps needed to protect yourself from flooding, or other water related problems, can help you prevent the larger problem of mold growth.

Preparing Your Commercial Building for a Hurricane

11/11/2020 (Permalink)

White metal roller window shutter and white brick wall Install shutters on your windows to keep out flying debris

Do Not Let Hurricane Damage Destroy Your Building

You probably take steps to protect your home from hurricane damage. Yet your commercial property in Tyler, TX, could be affected by high winds and heavy rain, as well. In fact, 40 percent of small businesses that close due to hurricanes never re-open.
You thus need to secure your headquarters so you can keep the company running immediately after the storm. Here are some ways to prepare your commercial premises for a hurricane.

1. Protect Key Documents
Even in this digital age, you probably still have important paper documents that are hard to reproduce. Legal contracts, accounting statements, tax returns and insurance documents are common examples. Seal these and other similar papers in waterproof containers before the storm comes.
You should also keep the contact information for people who are most essential to your business. This could be employees, accountants or lawyers. Put this information in an off-site location.

2. Make a Checklist
Write a list of everything your employees will need if your building sustains severe hurricane damage during work hours. Gather all of those items and place them in an easily accessible location within your property.
Your storm-preparation kit should include a three-day supply of water and non-perishable food. It should also have sleeping items such as cots, pillows, blankets and chairs. You may additionally want to store a battery-operated radio and a camera for documenting the destruction to the building.
Finally, be sure to put emergency contact information into the kit. Include the phone numbers for the Small Business Administration, your insurance provider, and a storm cleanup company.

3. Protect the Premises
While restoration experts can help you rebuild your property after the storm, you should also try to protect the building as much as possible. Install shutters on your windows to keep out flying debris. Additionally, cut any trees or branches that are too close to the structure.
Do not let hurricane damage destroy your business. By preparing in advance of the storm, you can mitigate the harm.