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Tips for Maintaining Your Sump Pump

1/15/2021 (Permalink)

Repairing a sump pump in a basement with a red LED light illuminating the pit and pipe work for draining ground water Ensure that your pump remains in good working order

A sump pump drains water from the sump basin in the basement of your house in Hamilton Mill, GA. Regular pump maintenance will keep it in the best condition possible to keep your basement and entire home dry.

Keep It Clean

Water passing through the earth around your home can carry fine dirt particles that it deposits in the pump. It is necessary to clear these particles regularly to allow the pump to drain effectively. Unplug the pump and pour a bottle of vinegar into the sump pit. Allow the vinegar to sit for about 30 minutes to break up the debris before restoring the power. Flush out dirt particles by pouring hot water into the pit.

Perform Routine Inspections
Pump maintenance and inspections are essential for detecting problems and issues that can lead to costly basement flood damage repairs. Ensure that your pump remains in good working order by checking various features, including:

  • Check valve. When the pump shuts off, this part prevents gravity from pulling water back into the pit. This part prevents pumped water from re-entering the sump pit where it requires repumping.
  • Float. Checking the float for jams ensures that the pump turns on and off appropriately.
  • Positioning. Ensuring the pump's upright position is necessary to prevent it from tipping over while vibrating.
  • Cover. A poorly-fitting pump lid can elevate the humidity within a home, increasing the risk for damage from mold formation that requires the intervention of a professional mold remediation service.
  • Alarm. If the pump malfunctions, a reliable alarm system can issue an alert to prevent a flood from occurring.

Install a Backup Generator
Power outages are common reasons for sump pump failures. A backup generator that kicks in during power outages will ensure the pump's uninterrupted function.
Routine sump pump inspections are a critical part of the measures necessary to maintain your home in Hamilton Mill, GA.

3 Ways To Prevent Bursting Pipes in the Winter

12/28/2020 (Permalink)

Insulation covers with the words COVER UP THE PIPES Insulate your pipes

Ways To Prevent Bursting Pipes In The Winter

Throughout the winter, homeowners in Suwanee, GA, know they must prepare adequately to prevent a house flood. Causes for bursting pipes include:

  • Frozen pipes
  • High water pressure
  • Old plumbing systems

The aftermath of a burst pipe can be devastating for your home, causing severe water damage to your property and hours of water cleanup. During colder times of the year, you can ensure your pipes are protected from the frost by taking these steps.

1. Insulate Your Pipes
Installing insulation around your pipes before winter begins protects them from freezing temperatures. Insulation keeps the cold air from affecting any exposed or external plumbing. Though it may seem costly initially, a layer of insulation keeps your pipes protected for years after having it installed, saving you from the more expensive repairs and water damage restoration service needed after bursting pipes.

2. Open Your Faucets to a Drip
Due to the freezing cold temperatures, burst pipes are more frequent during the winter. Frozen water inside of the pipes increases the water pressure. The increased pressure builds and eventually causes the pipes to burst. Keeping the water running at a drip relieves the water pressure inside of the pipes, keeping them from bursting.

3. Open Cabinets in Bathrooms and Kitchens
Allowing the warm air in your house to travel around water supply lines, which are located in your kitchen and bathroom, can keep them warm enough to prevent freezing inside the pipes. This avoids any burst water supply lines. To protect water supply lines during the winter, open the cabinets where this plumbing is located so your heated air can reach them.
Avoid having to call a plumber to fix a broken pipe by taking preventative measures before and during winter. Preparing for the winter can ensure your plumbing is protected from freezing temperatures and save you the cost of repairs from bursting pipes.

How a Fire Sprinkler System Works

12/28/2020 (Permalink)

Factory roof structure and automatic fire protection in building system. Fire sprinkler system

If you have a fire sprinkler system at your business property in Buford, GA, you have hopefully never seen the system in action. However, it's a good idea to know how it functions.

Parts of a Sprinkler System

The typical sprinkler consists of:

  • Pipes containing water under pressure
  • Plug that holds back the water
  • Glycerin-filled glass bulb holding the plug in place
  • Deflector that sprays water around the fire area

A network of pipes runs between the individual sprinkler heads. The water is always in the piping, meaning the system is ready to initiate fire suppression when activated.

Conditions for Activation
If a fire starts, the air temperature above it will rise. When it reaches about 160 degrees Fahrenheit, the glycerin will expand and break the bulb, springing open the plug. Water leaves the pipe, and the deflector sprays it around the room. Because the glycerin responds only to temperature, smoke alone will not activate the fire sprinkler system. If the fire spreads, the hot air will activate other sprinklers, but only the ones triggered by the rise in temperature will go off.

Advantages of a Sprinkler System
What makes a sprinkler system so effective is that it works quickly. Before the fire department can arrive, the system has begun fire suppression. In many cases, the system will contain and possibly extinguish the fire. Your property may experience less damage than it would without the system. Fire sprinkler cleanup and professional restoration may also be easier. The fire may be better contained and extinguished with less water than a fire that had the chance to spread before firefighters arrive.

Common Sprinkler System Myths
In the movies, it seems that a small trigger sets off a room full of sprinklers. However, that's not the way a system works. It's activated by high heat, so candles and toasters will not set it off, and only the sprinklers above the heat will activate.
If you haven't installed a fire sprinkler system in your business, it's worth considering. In the event of a fire, a sprinkler system can give your business added protection.

How To Handle a Major Water Problem

12/15/2020 (Permalink)

Overflowing broken toilet One common instance of sewer damage is when a full toilet overflows

When it comes to water damage in your commercial building in Buford, GA, each situation is unique. Some problems are straightforward, while others require the expertise of a professional water remediation franchise. Any situation that involves sewer damage is more complicated. That's because contaminated water not only poses a threat to humans but also can cause more damage to ceilings, flooring, walls and insulation.
As in all cases of damage from water, the source of the problem should be stopped right away. This is followed by an inspection and assessment of the impacted area by certified technicians. They will then develop an appropriate restoration plan.

Dealing With Toilet Overflow

One common instance of sewer damage is when a full toilet overflows. If the toilet is on a second floor or higher, the water can penetrate the flooring and then leak down into the floor below. When this happens, professional technicians can take the following actions:

  • Arrive on site fast and wearing PPE
  • Stop the source of the contamination
  • Restore all flooring and ceiling materials
  • Disinfect and sanitize the area

You should consult your insurance agent as soon as you can. The agent can advise you on what portions of the damages and expenses are covered. Having a professional sewage company deal with a flooded toilet is likely to produce the best results.

Handling Other Sewage Damage Scenarios
Raw sewage coming into your place of business is a serious situation. It can happen in a number of ways. A sewage backup can occur when an outgoing line becomes clogged with obstructions such as a rock or tree roots. Another possibility is when a sewage line pipe breaks due to old age or some sort of trauma. A third possibility is a flood that brings in contaminated water from the outside of your building.
Whatever the cause of the problem, sewer damage situations are best handled by professionals with the training and equipment to deal with complicated restorations.

How To Find Mold Even If You Can't See It

12/8/2020 (Permalink)

Mold remediation specialist, cleaning mold in drywall Mold remediation services in Buford, GA

Ways To Help You Decide If You Need Mold Remediation Specialists

You're faced with a dilemma. You know that there's a mildew smell in the office, but you've checked everywhere you can think of and you still don't see any signs of mold. Do you shrug and ignore it, maybe run an oil diffuser and hope it goes away? That's an option, but just because you can't see mold doesn't mean that it isn't there. Noticing a mold smell is a pretty good indicator that something isn't right, even if you can't see it. Here are some ways to help you decide if you need a mold remediation specialist to visit your office in Buford, GA.

1. Smell
You know that a fungus smell likely indicates mold, but why? Mold emits gases at various stages of its growth. Mold itself is not smelly; it's the compounds that are released into the air by the mold that smell bad. If you're smelling a mold smell, you can be fairly confident that there is mold growing somewhere.

2. Sight
Mold doesn't just look like the black, blue, or gray spots you find on leftovers that have been in the fridge for too long. Mildew, which is just early-stage mold, might look to you like dirt. Especially in basements or storage areas that aren't regularly visited by your cleaning crew, don't just write off a dirty surface as just needing a wet rag. It might be early signs of mold.

3. Infrared
Sometimes, the only way to tell whether or not there is mold is to look behind walls. Thankfully, infrared technology makes it possible to check for leaks, the extent of any possible damage, and energy leaks that may be allowing moisture into the building without tearing down walls. Infrared doesn't identify mold, but it identifies mold-friendly conditions that are of concern to mold inspectors.
A mold smell in your facility likely indicates a problem. Hoping that the smell will go away probably isn't going to work. Instead, have a professional come to assess your building so that you can get the problem taken care of quickly.

Does Homeowner’s Insurance Cover a Fire?

12/8/2020 (Permalink)

Document of Homeowners Insurance Policy for background Buy homeowner's insurance to protect your home and belongins

What Is Covered By Your Insurance Policy

You buy homeowner's insurance to protect your home and belongings. Generally, they will help pay for damage from a disaster, such as a home fire. Whether it is started by arson or a cooking disaster, a fire can consume your home and belongings. Afterward, you will probably need to hire qualified restoration professionals to repair the damage. To prepare yourself for this situation, you should know what is covered by your insurance policy.

What Is Covered?
When an accidental home fire strikes, your insurance company will generally pay for the fire damage to be repaired on your listed buildings. This can include:

  • House
  • Sheds
  • Garages
  • Barns
  • Fences
  • Personal belongings

How Much Coverage Do You Need?
Your coverage limit should be tailored to your home. The limit is the maximum amount you will receive after a home fire. This means you should choose a limit that will cover your home, outbuildings, and personal belongings. When purchasing coverage, you will likely see personal property and dwelling limits.
Personal property limits cover the cost of replacing personal property damaged during a fire. However, your policy may not cover the entire value of certain items. For instance, you may want to purchase additional policies for any expensive jewelry you have so you can replace them.

What Is Not Covered?
Homeowner's insurance does not cover all types of fire. For instance, if you intentionally set fire to an empty house on your property, you will not be reimbursed. Additionally, any fires caused by wars are not covered. For more details, you should read your policy thoroughly to see what is not covered.
Knowing more about your homeowner's insurance policy will help you be prepared in the event of a fire. While an intentionally set vacant home fire is not covered, fires that started on accident in your home in Buford, GA, will generally be covered.

Will Your Rental Policy Cover Mold Damage?

11/24/2020 (Permalink)

Black mold inside a wall Black mold damage in Hamilton Mill, GA

Rental insurance can be a bit confusing. It is sometimes unclear what your policy does not cover. Mold insurance, in particular, is often complex. Below is a rundown of when your renters' policy covers mold damage.

When Mold Is Covered

Your insurance should pay for any mold that results from an accidental and sudden peril. Many disasters fall into this category, including:

  • Windstorms
  • Hail
  • Theft
  • Fire
  • Lightning
  • Vandalism
  • Volcanic eruptions

However, since mold thrives in wet conditions, the spores are most common following interior floods, HVAC leaks or pipe bursts. If you experience one of these scenarios, call emergency restoration experts in Hamilton Mill, GA, immediately. They can repair and disinfect your belongings before the mold growth begins. Your insurance should pay for the cost of this service. The policy will also cover any necessary mold removal and cleanup.
Don’t forget that your rental insurance only covers damage to your personal property. Any harm to the actual building is your landlord's responsibility.

When Mold Is Not Covered
Your rental insurance policy likely includes some mold exclusions. For instance, most renters' policies do not pay for any water or mold damage caused by external floods. These floods can result from sewer overflow, storm surges and heavy rains. However, you can purchase separate flood or sewer endorsements that should cover mold caused by these perils.
Insurers also will not cover mold that results from your negligence. If you leave out wet items or fail to remove standing water, the insurer may deem you liable for the damage and refuse to pay for the repairs.

How Much Damage Is Covered
Many insurance companies limit how much they will pay for mold claims. They may not give you more than a few thousand dollars per incident. You can purchase separate endorsements for your more valuable belongings, such as musical instruments, electronics and jewelry.
Rental insurance usually contains some mold coverage. However, that coverage may be limited, and it only applies in certain situations. Be sure to read over your policy so you understand exactly what is included.

5 Tips for Dealing With a Toilet Overflow

11/23/2020 (Permalink)

Overflowing broken toilet Toilet overflow in Buford, GA

Here Are Five Tips For Dealing With This Type Of Problem

When dealing with sewer damage in your Buford, GA, home, you may be wondering what steps to take. Whether it’s overflow from a sewer main maintained by the sewage company, or a blockage that led to a flooded toilet, there’s some important things to remember about dealing with a toilet overflow.

1. Contact a Professional
One of the first things to consider any time you have a sewer problem in your home is to contact a local water damage restoration service. These professionals are trained to deal with a number of water damage types, including sewage backup. They will have the tools and training needed to do so safely.

2. Wear Safety Gear
Sewage is classified as black water meaning that it carries contaminants such as chemicals or bacteria. This is why it’s important to wear protective equipment any time you deal with it. This may include masks, gloves, shoe covers, and clothing covers.

3. Remove the Water
One of the first things you will see your sewer damage restoration team do is remove the water before additional problems can arise. They may use special pumps or vacuums for this job, and pay special attention to tights spaces where water may be hard to get at.

4. Dry the Space
Once the water is removed it is important to dry the space. This is to help prevent water from soaking in and causing additional problems such as swollen wood or mold.

5. Sanitize the Area
Because sewage is contaminated, after it is removed and the area dries, the space will need to be sanitized. Your restoration teach will use a variety of cleaners designed to work on the different affected surfaces.

It’s important to remember that sewer damage can be tricky to deal with. This is why it’s highly recommended to contact a professional restoration service for help. These professionals will have the correct safety gear needed for dealing with the problem so that they can remove the water, dry the area, and correctly sanitize the space. Soon your home can look “Like it never even happened.”

How Water Damage and Fire Damage Can Be Related

11/11/2020 (Permalink)

Fire and strong smoke covered building. Dangerous situation Commercial fire and water damage in Rest Haven, GA

Here Are A Few Ways Water Damage Can Occur After A Fire

Believe it or not having to conduct a water cleanup at your Rest Haven, GA, place of business is something that many local fire restoration professionals anticipate any time they're called to a job. Much like needing to perform a smoke cleanup, a restoration evolving water damage is a normal part of a fire cleanup. 

1. Fire Suppression

The suppression efforts used to put out the fire in the first place may also lead to water damage. For example, the use of a fire hose can cause flooding as a fire hose can pump out up to 500 gallons per minute. The fire may be put out, but water can be left behind. Similarly, suppressant released by an overhead sprinkler system may contain less water, but if allowed to sit it too can lead to water damage

2. Weather

After a fire, wet weather such as rain, hail or snow can cause problems which result in the need for a water cleanup. This typically occurs after the fire has weakened the exterior structure leaving holes that the weather can get through. The damp space left after a storm can turn into water damage if left unattended. This is why you may see your restoration service board or tarp over the building until repairs can be made.

3. Plumbing

Your plumbing can be affected by a fire as well. The heat can put stress on joints or thinner areas of metal, which can then weaken the pipes allowing them to possibly burst after a fire. This can result in flooding in these areas, and possible water damage. Fortunately, your local restoration service should be able to handle any clean up the repairs of this type of water damage.

Needing a water cleanup after a fire at your place of business is actually fairly expected. This is because things like a fire suppression efforts, wet weather, and problems with plumbing can all contribute to possible flooding. Fortunately, many local fire restoration professionals expect possible water damage and will know how to best restore the property.

3 Reasons You Need Business Insurance

11/11/2020 (Permalink)

Hot key for business insurance Paying for insurance regularly might not sound appealing, but it is better than the alternative

The Following Are A Few Reasons Why

If you own a business in Buford, GA, then there are steps that you should take to protect that business. One of these is purchasing insurance that covers water damage and other emergencies. It might seem like this is just an extra expense that you could do without, but this is not the case. 

1. Repairs Can Be Expensive
Paying for insurance regularly might not sound appealing, but it is better than the alternative. If you are dealing with broken pipes or something else that causes flooding in the building, the cost of repairs can be high. Not only can it affect the building, but it can also cause damage to the items within it. Without insurance, you will be stuck paying for repairs and replacements on your own, which will cost your business a lot of money.

2. Water Damage Is a Common Occurrence
Many people like to think that, while bad things happen to other people, a disaster probably won’t happen to them. Unfortunately, water causes damage often, and chances are it will affect your building at some point. Whether it comes from a storm, leak or broken appliance, insurance can be a lifesaver in this situation.

3. You Could Lose Profits During Restoration
If the damage is severe, then water cleanup and repairs can take a while. Sometimes, building materials such as drywall or insulation need to be torn out and replaced. Mold growth can occur as well. If you are unable to operate your business as usual during this time, insurance can help minimize loss.
Restoration should be done as soon as possible to reduce secondary damage. Hiring a water damage remediation company is your best bet for getting your business ready to go again quickly, and insurance helps ensure you can cover those costs as you get up and running.