6 Sump Pump Maintenance Tips for a Functional Home
Pour water into your basin to ensure that it drains quickly
A sump pump moves accumulated water away from your basement to prevent interior damage and floods. Unfortunately, too many homeowners ignore this important appliance until it’s too late. These six easy and fast maintenance tips can help keep your living space in top condition.
1. Look at the Connecting Cords
Causes of an overflow include:
- Power outages
Rather than struggling with the complex components of your appliance, you can simply check the cord running from your unit to the working ground fault circuit interrupter. Make sure it’s plugged in properly and that there are no kinks.
2. Remove Debris
Debris may build up on the intake screen of your unit and impact its performance. Carefully inspect and clean the screen at least once a year.
3. Test Your Unit
Pour water into your basin to ensure that it drains quickly. It’s a prudent thing to do before a rainy or snowy season. If you notice slow drainage, then contact residential storm experts who can complete a more thorough inspection.
4. Replace Your Battery
If your sump pump contains a battery, it needs to be replaced every two or three years. Follow the instructions in the manufacturer’s guide to complete a safe battery swap.
5. Clean the Discharge Pump and Vent Hole
Pump maintenance in Reunion, FL, isn’t always pretty, but it’s necessary. Dirt, gravel and debris around the discharge pump or vent hole of your unit cause it to work harder to drain water, thus increasing the possibility of overflowing. Roll up your sleeves and clear any obstructions once a year so your unit can work properly.
6. Inspect the Pit and Float Component
Debris can also gather in the pit of your pump, so remember to check this area as well. Keep the perimeter of the float component unobstructed.
Water damage to your basement can be expensive to repair. Follow these maintenance tips to keep your sump pump operating at peak capacity.
Got a Leak Under the Kitchen Sink? Take These 3 Steps Now
Leak under kitchen sink
What To Do When You Discover a Leak Under Your Kitchen Sink
You’ve discovered a leak under your kitchen sink. Not to worry! You can prevent further flooding and damage, but you’ve got to act as quickly as possible. The steps you take now can help minimize your potential losses and start the restoration process as soon as possible.
1. Turn Off Your Water
To reduce the chances of more flooding, you need to shut off the water at its sources. Besides turning off your faucets, you may need to check the sink’s shutoff valve or supply connections. Leaks can also occur when water penetrates the countertop areas around the rim of the sink. Depending on the speed of the leak, you may need to quickly remove excess water from the cabinet bottoms under the sink to stop sitting water from damaging the wood. You should also move vulnerable items to safe, dry places within your home.
2. Contact Your Insurer
Extensive leaks that leave a lot of water in your home could result in significant water damage claims. If this is the case, you need to contact your insurance company as soon as possible. Concentrate on documenting anything that shows the extent of your loss: photos of the impacted areas, written descriptions of the damage and an inventory of affected items.
3. Call a Trusted Restoration Company
Time is of the essence when you’re dealing with a serious kitchen plumbing leak in Celebration, FL. The sooner you contact a reputable water damage restoration company, the more quickly your kitchen repair and recovery process can begin. Look for responsive professionals who are available 24/7 and are Faster to any size disaster.
A Few Last Words
When you’re dealing with flooding, you must keep your family’s safety in mind, as well as your own. Avoid attempting to vacuum up the water yourself, don’t use electrical appliances in the affected areas and don’t leave wet fabrics or printed items on the floor. Following these tips and acting quickly can improve potential outcomes after a serious leak.
How To Protect Your Commercial Roof From Storm Damage
Leaking roof in Saint Cloud, FL
If you’re expecting a storm to hit your area in Saint Cloud, FL, you need to be prepared for any type of harm that may affect your business. From strong winds to hail damage, there are many risk factors to watch out for as you work to prepare your business for the storm. Here are some of the steps you can take to minimize as much roof damage as possible and keep your business running after the bad weather passes.
Inspect Your Roof
Before you attempt to shield your roof from the storm, it’s important to closely examine it and identify any problems. Check to see if there are signs of:
- Loose materials
- Cracks or holes
If you come across anything that needs to be repaired or replaced, make sure you take care of it as soon as possible. Leaving any damaged parts of your roof untreated can make them vulnerable to adverse weather.
Check AC Unit
If you have an air conditioning unit mounted on your roof, take the time to inspect it as well. Make sure that the system is functioning properly so you can address any issues early on. In addition, pay close attention to the state of the unit itself. Ensure that the AC unit and its metal panels are properly secured onto the roof to prevent any roof damage from occurring.
Examine Perimeter Flashing
Your perimeter flashing is an important aspect of your commercial roof. When inspecting the roof, be sure to check for any pieces of flashing that don’t fit properly or are missing completely. It’s particularly crucial to examine your perimeter flashing before a storm, as any loose pieces can cause water damage and ruin your roof cover.
Any kind of harm that you notice on your roof in the aftermath of a storm should be addressed immediately. Don’t wait to call a professional if something seems to be out of place. No matter what type of roof damage you’re facing, emergency restoration experts can guide you through the recovery process.
Protect Your Business From Disaster
Install a sprinkler system in your building
As a business owner or property manager, you have a lot to think about. One aspect of your job is to plan ahead and to think about fire preparation. How can you make your company better prepared to handle a fire? Is there a way to avoid a costly fire in the first place? If you do have a fire in Kissimmee, FL, how do you lessen its impact on your employees, customers and bottom line? Fortunately, there are many steps you can take to minimize or eliminate the effects of a costly fire. One important step that shouldn't be overlooked is who to call in an emergency. This will of course include the fire department, but it should also include calling in fire restoration experts as quickly as possible.
The Elements of Disaster Preparation
To reduce the likelihood of a commercial fire, or to limit fire damage, a number of proactive steps can be taken. These include some or all of the following measures:
- Install current fire alarms and a sprinkler system in your building
- Work with fire officials to fireproof your building
- Make sure your fire extinguishers are in working order and inspected
- Conduct regular fire drills for employees
- Appoint a person in charge of fire preparation for your company
If a fire does occur, it's important to call a company that understands the concept of Faster to Any Size Disaster. When it comes to disaster preparation in Kissimmee, FL, speed is always of the essence. The more quickly restoration begins, the more likely that damage will be limited. This is especially true for water restoration related to a sprinkler system or the hoses from the fire department. Powerful equipment can be brought in such as industrial fans and wet vacuums that limit damage to walls, ceilings and electrical equipment.
It pays to think about fire preparation. It can save lives and valuable property.
Finding and Treating Mold in Your Commercial Property
Significant mold growth can occur in 48-72 hours
Did you know that your commercial building could have a mold problem without you even knowing it? Unfortunately, mold can grow in places that are not visible in a casual walk-through. Knowing what enables mold growth and common places it occurs can help you keep your business mold-free.
Where Mold Grows
Mold can grow anywhere it is warm and wet, but there are certain places that are more prone to mold infestations than others. Make sure you check the following areas in your building for mold:
- Electrical equipment
- Paper-storage areas
- HVAC units (particularly drainage pans and terminal units)
- Ceiling tiles
- Walls (wallboards and inside cavity walls)
Mold can also result from high humidity, so be sure to keep the inside humidity low, ideally below 45%.
Mold Growth From Water Damage
Mold can begin growing as quickly as 24 hours after flooding, leaking or any other event that causes water damage to your property. Therefore, it is important to dry the water as soon as possible. Wet/dry vacuums, dehumidifiers and fans can all help with this process. Anything that cannot be fully dried should be removed from the area.
Often the first indication of a mold problem is a musty smell. If you cannot see any mold, it may be best to call mold remediation experts to help you find the source of the mold. After the mold has been found and the water source addressed, it is important to contain the mold. This can be accomplished by turning off fans and the heating or air conditioning in the area. Professionals may use more advanced methods. Then an antimicrobial or antifungal cleaning solution should be used to clean the mold. Anything that cannot be fully cleaned of mold should be thrown out. After the mold has been brought back to normal levels, any needed reconstruction or repairs can begin.
Mold in your Holopaw, FL, business can be a serious problem. However, routinely checking for mold growth and addressing it quickly can prevent a minor issue from becoming a disaster.
Cleaning Up Smoke and Soot After a Fire
What type of smoke are you dealing with?
A fire in your Deer Park, FL, home will likely cause smoke damage. With everything else you have going on after a fire, you might want to wait to address this problem, but it is important to take care of it sooner rather than later.
What Type of Smoke Are You Dealing With?
It is helpful to know what kind of smoke is damaging your home because different types of smoke respond better to different cleaning methods. Three common types of smoke are the following:
Wet smoke comes from slow burning fires — low-heat fires, often from plastic and rubber.
Dry smoke comes from fast burning fires — high-heat fires, often from wood and paper.
Protein residue, created when food or other organic material evaporates in a fire, is not technically smoke but is still a problem because of the foul odor it produces.
What Happens if You Wait?
Because smoke damage and soot damage are corrosive, the longer they go untreated the more damage they cause. Additionally, movement in the area can cause the smoke and soot to become further embedded in upholstery, carpets, etc. This makes it more difficult, if not impossible, for the items to be fully cleaned and restored.
What Are Your Options?
There are a variety of smoke cleaning options currently available, including air scrubbing, thermal fogging and ozone treatments. Air scrubbers trap smoke particles in their filters. A commercial device can usually filter out more of the smoke than one designed for typical residential use. Thermal fogging works by heating up the surfaces in your home, causing them to expand. This allows the deodorization solution to penetrate further than it could in a room-temperature area. Ozone treatments are also an effective way to deodorize a home because the ozone oxidizes the smoke particles, destroying the unpleasant odors. For soot damage, ultrasonic cleaning is particularly effective. It uses a cleaning solution and ultrasound waves to thoroughly clean contaminated objects.
Regardless of the type of smoke damage you are dealing with, a professional restoration team can choose the best method to get your home and belongings back to normal.
What To Do When You Don't Have Flood Insurance
When your home has been affected by storm flooding you can apply through FEMA agency for some help
What To Do When You Don't Have Flood Insurance
When storms flood waters rushing into your home, there's not much time to do anything other than pack up your belongings and your family and move to a safe area. Eventually, however, you'll have to confront the costs of repairs. If you don't have flood insurance, you may feel at a loss regarding how to recover. If you live in an area where there's potential for flooding, you should consider getting a policy that covers:
- Contents of your home
- Repairs, reconstruction, or replacement of your home
- Temporary housing
Make sure you discuss the many things that insurance won't cover, such as items in the basement and swimming pools. If you don't have insurance, however, there are some steps you can take.
When your home and possessions have been affected by storm-related flooding, you can apply through the Federal Emergency Management Agency for some help. You may qualify for small grans or low-cost loans. This help through FEMA is only available for your first home, not a second residence. The type of assistance you receive may be influenced by whether the president has declared the flood plane or your state to be a major disaster area. Your specific county must be named to qualify for individual assistance.
Low-cost loans can cover some of your costs that flood insurance would have covered. For example, you may qualify for a loan through the U.S. Small Business Administration to make repairs or replacements to the structure of your home. Don't plan to use this money for upgrades or additions. Work with home repair and reconstruction professionals to determine the cost of repairs and rebuilding.
Grants from the federal government may be available to help you find a place to stay while you can't remain in your home. These grants may also cover at least part of the uninsured damages, belongings, and disaster-related expenses. These expenses may include childcare, medical costs, and funerals. However, grants are only available if you don't qualify for a loan through the SBA or when you need more help that is available through the loans.
When you don't have flood insurance, and sometimes if you do, federal agencies may provide the financial assistance you need to get back into your Lokosee, FL, home. Take the necessary steps to protect yourself upfront and to get further assistance as needed.
Fire Damage: Who Pays for What in a Rental Situation?
An apartment fire in Poinciana,FL
Going through an apartment fire can be tough on both the tenant and the landlord, if in different ways. With tensions high, it can be more difficult to calmly discuss who is responsible for repairs. Before this happens to you in Poinciana, FL, educate yourself.
Assess the Damage
From the very beginning, the tenant and the landlord should be working together. It's generally a good idea to follow these steps:
Both landlord and tenant should call their own insurance.
As soon as it's been deemed safe by the fire officer, both should do a walk-through to catalogue the fire damage: written lists, pictures and receipts.
The landlord should take the lead on securing the property, like laying tarp over any exposed areas and locking it down.
Both should agree on a fire remediation service to bring in.
After an apartment fire, the responsibility of the landlord is to the bones of the property, unless otherwise stated in a lease agreement. Structural damage can include walls, windows, roofing, electrical, plumbing, cabinets and countertops- basically everything that existed before the tenant's arrival. Usually the landlord won't be paying out of pocket, it will be through their insurance policy.
The tenant is only responsible for all of their personal property, like furniture, electronics, documents and clothing. If they have the appropriate coverage, this could also be paid for through their renter's policy. Insurance could also cover temporary housing while the property is rehabilitated. If the landlord and tenant have been coordinating, the same fire remediation service can handle both the content and structural damage.
An apartment fire involves a lot of interested parties. It's a good idea to get a handle on who is taking care of what before moving forward. That way, everything can get done faster and everyone can get back to living their lives. Team work makes the dream work!
3 Ways To Lower Your Business Interruption Claim
Salon flooded in Osceola County, FL
Ways to Lower Your Business Interruption Claim
Flooding can cause your business in Osceola County, FL, to temporarily shut its doors while the process of restoration begins. Though it's often necessary for a business to temporarily shut down after a flood, the loss of business can take its toll. However, there are several ways you can lower your business interruption claim.
1. Stop the Flow of Water if Possible
When a natural disaster causes a flood, it's rarely possible to stop the flow of water. However, you can often stop water from continuing to enter your building if a flood is caused by a broken pipe or malfunctioning appliance. If a burst pipe or broken appliance is causing your building to flood, quickly shutting off the water in your building can be a useful way to stop the flow of the floodwater and can decrease the likelihood of major damage occurring.
2. Make a Claim in a Timely Manner
Making a large water damage claim soon after flooding affects your building is often helpful. Different insurance policies will provide varying coverage, and knowing what costs your policy will cover can help you to prepare for restoration. You can talk to someone at your insurance company if you have specific questions about your policy, but it's generally beneficial to make a claim as soon as possible so you can begin restoration and can start to mitigate the damage.
3. Begin Restoration Quickly
Starting restoration quickly is often wise after a disaster occurs. Waiting to begin the restoration process can cause additional damage, such as mold growth, to your building. To ensure your restoration is as effective and cost-efficient as possible, it can be helpful to employ emergency restoration services. By starting the restoration process as soon as possible, it is likely that you will be able to reopen your business sooner rather than later.
Having your business interrupted after flooding can be costly. However, reducing the cost of your business interruption claim often can allow you to begin restoration quickly and can make it easier to reopen your business in a timely manner.
How To Stop a Bath or Shower Leak
Consult a plumber to stop the leak in your bathtub
How to Identify and Fix a Shower or Bathtub Leak
A leak can result in standing water around a shower or bathtub that can leave signs of discoloration. Water damage may be apparent on the same floor, on the ceiling of the one below it or in a basement or crawlspace. Here are several pointers for identifying and fixing a shower or bathtub leak.
Replace the Shower Pan
Shower pans play a critical role in preventing leaks. If this component has worn out, you are likely to see signs of water damage. You can make sure the problem is a shower pan leak by taking the following steps:
- Fill the bath with 1.5 inches of water
- Have someone stand and walk around in the tub or shower
- Keep checking over several days
A bathtub leak caused by a shower pan may be more extensive than a drain problem or poor sealing. Expect to replace this piece every 30 years.
Repair the Drain
A faulty drain flange or gasket can also result in moisture damage. Pour water from a bucket or hose down the drain while someone monitors the area underneath. If leaking is spotted, you may have located the source.
Reseal Caulking or Grout
Caulk creates a waterproof barrier between tile and other fixtures or surface materials. If you notice standing water on the bathroom floor, re-caulking may be needed. Grout prevents moisture from getting in between tiles or behind walls where hidden mold can form.
Clean and Maintain the Shower
A shower head could also be the source of a leak. Make sure that the escutcheon is sealed with caulk or putty. It may also be necessary to replace faulty components, such as cartridges, gaskets, stems and washers.
Depending on the cause of a shower or bathtub leak, any of these measures could resolve the problem. If you cannot find a way to stop a leak, consult a plumber or a water damage restoration service in Reunion, FL.