Recent Posts

Removing Odor After Your Home Is Flooded

9/10/2019 (Permalink)

Someone's hand pointing at a wall that has mold and mildew Mold growth and mildew as a result of humidity

A flood’s aftermath can impact your home in various ways. Possessions may be ruined, the structure itself is likely compromised and mold growth might emerge. One noticeable effect of a flood is often a foul smell that can range from annoying to overwhelming. Learn more about removing this odor by identifying the multiple causes and removal methods at your disposal.

What Causes Flood Odor?

There are a variety of reasons why the affected location has such a powerful stench. Knowing each reason can assist you in finding a specific solution. The following factors are some of the most common causes of after-flood odor:

  • Strong humidity
  • Sewage loss contaminated with waste, bacteria and other pollutants
  • Water filled with chemicals or garbage
  • Mold growth and mildew as a result of humidity

The longer the odor remains in the home, the stronger it can become. You will need to determine the definite cause behind the smell and act fast before the problem escalates.

What Do You Do After a Flood?

The first step in handling undesirable smells in the flooded area is getting rid of the flood water. Beyond draining away the excess water, you will also have to use a wet vacuum or a steam cleaner to clean carpets and remove the remaining water. You must also dispose of any debris caused by the flood.

How Do You Eliminate the Odor?

Once everything has been cleaned up, it is time to begin the disinfection and deodorization of the area. If the odor is weak and the damage is minor, you can use a mop with soap and disinfectant to clean the floors and walls. If the smell is too great or if mold is present, water damage restoration services can help you get rid of the smell — and the mold — effectively.

A strong odor after a flood can impact the quality of life in your Hanover Park,IL, home. Take the necessary steps to mitigate the damage, including mold growth, and eliminate the odor before it worsens.

Why Your Water Heater is Making Noises

8/30/2019 (Permalink)

An annual water heater flush is generally the best way to maintain your equipment

Most noises that are made by water heaters come from those that have a tank. If you have a tankless system in Hanover Park,IL, it might make a clicking noise when the flow switch starts and stops the flow of water, which is normal. However, if it makes a lot of noise when turning on, there may be too much calcium from hard water. This might indicate the need for a water softener. Other noises could be related to a dirty fan, a leak in the sealed combustion, or a problem with the burner. So, what about noises with a tank water heater?

Types of Water Heater Sounds

Crackling or Popping

Sediment can accumulate around the element tubes and begin making popping sounds as the water is forced through the sediment. If you have an older heater, this is more common. If the sound is more of a rumble, there may be sediment inside the tank which can be fixed with an annual water heater flush and a good cleaning. Similar noises can be made just by the metal tank expanding and contracting, which is normal.

Hammering or Knocking

If you hear a knocking sound inside your walls, this is usually from the pipes heating, especially when water going to and from the tank is turned off abruptly, such as from a dishwasher or toilet. This causes pipes in the walls to move, and while it’s not damaging to your water heater, it could cause wall damage eventually. Water hammer arrestors are made to solve this issue.

Screeching

A screeching or screaming sound usually indicates that water is being forced through a small opening, caused by a slightly closed valve at your water heater or the appliance you’re using, such as a sink.

Tapping or Ticking

This is often a normal sound, caused by the check valves or heat traps in the pipes on top of your heater. These are used to make sure water does not flow in the wrong direction.

Maintaining Your Water Heater

An annual water heater flush is generally the best way to maintain your equipment to ensure it lasts as long as possible while functioning correctly and efficiently. It’s also useful to check the hot water supply lines to all of your sinks once in awhile to ensure you won’t be needing any water damage repair out of the blue!

Tips on Defending Your Building Against Storm Damage

8/23/2019 (Permalink)

A powerful storm in Schaumburg,IL, can deliver a wallop against the walls, windows and roof of your commercial building. A little extra attention to exterior maintenance can strengthen a building and make it more likely to hold up to heavy winds, torrential rains and flooding. The starting point is a thorough inspection of your building and the nearby grounds. This is something you can do, but at some point you might want to bring in an extra set of eyes by contacting a building company or a team of storm damage professionals. They might spot things you would have missed and will offer tips for protecting the building.

The Most Effective Measures

After the building inspection is completed, you will probably want to take some specific measures to strengthen your property. Pay attention to areas of your building that have been neglected or look vulnerable. The following issues should be addressed promptly:

  • An old or damaged roof
  • Broken windows or windows with poor seals
  • Cracks in the foundation
  • Ceilings that show signs of water damage
  • Walls that have crumbling masonry or damaged siding

A building maintained well gives your company a better chance of handling a high-impact storm. Proper exterior maintenance allows your company to stay ahead of problems and reduce the chance of major repairs and work disruptions. It also enables your property and its contents to weather a big storm in Schaumburg,IL.

Additional Fixes

If your building is located in a flood zone, or if it is in the path of frequent storms, you may want to consider more substantial measures. Building earth berms or physical barriers fortifies your property against high waters and strong winds. A new metal roof may be more effective than a traditional shingle and tar roof. These measures are expensive, but may pay off in the long run. Serious attention to exterior maintenance pays off in the long run.

3 Tips for Resolving Smoke Damage Claims

8/16/2019 (Permalink)

Smoke damage in a Bartlett, IL building

When your property is damaged by smoke from a neighboring building, the insurance claim process may be anything but clear. Fortunately, there are some things you can do as you work with your insurance company to improve the results of a smoke damage claim.

Keep Thorough Records

Written records and photographic evidence of smoke and soot damage is crucial to the successful resolution of a claim. Your records should include a lot of information:

  • The date of the fire
  • The type of damage and any related losses
  • Names and contact information of the involved parties
  • A description of all affected contents
  • Estimates for the cost of repairs and corrective action
  • Reports from the police and fire department


Contact your insurance agent to find out if you need any other information. Keep these records in a safe place, so you can provide copies as needed by various authorities.


Hire Professionals for Repairs


As smoke damage spreads throughout your building, soot settles on carpets, equipment, and furnishings. Professional smoke cleaning companies can help you avoid further damages, and they are likely to work with your insurance company. If you try to attempt repairs on your own, you could do additional damage and reduce the amount you could get from your insurance provider.


Call a Public Adjuster


Even if you are confident in your insurance company, a public adjuster provides an unbiased estimate of the cost of the damage. This information can help you develop a realistic understanding of how much money you may get from the claim. The participation of a public adjuster could influence your insurance company, particularly if the company is likely to minimize their estimate of damages.

Smoke damage losses are generally covered by insurance companies. Use these three tips to improve your chances of getting sufficient reimbursement when your Bartlett,IL, business has been affected by fires in adjacent buildings.

Content Cleaning After a Flood

7/25/2019 (Permalink)

Flooded carpet in Glendale Heights, IL

How To Clean Personal Belongings

One of the most difficult problems that homeowners can face in the aftermath of a flood in their home is the process of content cleaning. As a result, it can be overwhelming to figure out what belongings can be cleaned and how to clean them properly. If your home in Glendale Heights,IL, has dealt with flooding, the following tips can help determine what steps need to be taken to clean personal belongings.

Cleaning Methods

There are a variety of professional content cleaning techniques that can be used for belongings. They include the following:

  • Spray and wipe, which is used for more delicate items that cannot be wet cleaned.
  • Foam cleaning, used for upholstery to prevent shrinkage of material.
  • Wet cleaning, used for heavier residues.
  • Dry cleaning, for pretreating or cleaning light residues.
  • Immersion cleaning, in which the material is dipped into a cleaning product.
  • Abrasive cleaning, which agitates the surface of the material.

Electronics

Electronics damaged by flood waters are extremely dangerous. It is important to not turn on any electronics that have potential water damage. These include computers, DVD players, gaming consoles and televisions. An electronic technician should be contacted as soon as possible to inspect and clean electronic devices to ensure they are safe and to see if they can be used again. Some devices may need to be replaced.

Porous and Non-porous Materials

Porous materials, which include rugs, carpets and upholstery, are difficult to clean. These materials have a tendency to absorb water, so floodwater that could possibly be contaminated can lead to the growth of mold and foul odors. This is especially a concern with black water, as it can harbor harmful bacteria and microbes, so porous materials may need to be replaced. Non-porous materials can usually be cleaned.
If your home has been subject to flooding, water damage repair specialists can help with content cleaning and get your home back to normal quickly.

Mold 101: A Quick Overview of Mold

7/25/2019 (Permalink)

Mold damage on wall

Any Roselle, IL, business can end up with a mold problem. This is because mold spores are literally everywhere. If the spores are introduced to water, mold has the environment that it needs to survive and to grow. If you’re worried about black mold growth in your business, then there are ways that you can prevent mold and to clean it up quickly and easily with the help of mold remediation specialists.

How Mold Grows

Mold growth is relatively simple. It tends to grow in the following areas:

  • Warm environments
  • Muggy climates
  • Flooding areas

Black mold grows in warm and moist environments. This is why the summertime sometimes leads to even more mold growth than other times of the year. This is particularly true if you live in a muggy area where the heat and moisture can lead to mold on the walls. Mold spores may travel from the outside into your building, or it may hitch a ride on your clothing until it ends up in your business.

Traits of Mold

In order to identify mold, you will probably smell it first. It can produce a strong odor that tends to lean towards musty. When you smell the mold, it can help lead you to where the problem is. Mold thrives in wet environments and will grow into colonies under the right circumstances. Likewise, mold spores are microscopic and can travel through heating and air vents. No matter where you are, whether it’s a business or a multi-family home, indoors or outdoors, mold spores are everywhere, and sometimes you need mold cleanup to help.

When you have a moisture problem, it can easily lead to a black mold problem. Any time you have moisture in your commercial building, you run the risk of mold growing. Fortunately, there are services Here to Help when you’re in the most need for them. Mold remediation can help offset new growth.

What Is the Cleanup Process for Homes Affected by Fires?

7/18/2019 (Permalink)

After a fire an assessment is performed on your Schick,IL home

What is Involved in Fire Cleanup Process

After your home in Schick,IL, sustains fire and smoke damage, it can be easy to feel overwhelmed, and you will likely want to start the cleanup process immediately. Many homeowners are unsure of what is involved in fire cleanup, but understanding this process can help you to plan for what's ahead.

1. Assessment and Board-Up

Immediately after a fire has occurred, an assessment is performed on your home. An assessment will allow restoration experts to see the extent of the fire and soot damage, and experts can often give you an estimate of how long cleanup and restoration will take based on this assessment. Additionally, board-up services that cover exposed walls and windows can help to protect your home from outside elements.

2. Removing Soot and Smoke

After your home has been assessed and board-up services are complete, removing soot and smoke from your home is often the next step. Both smoke damage and soot can have a lasting impact on your home, and for the cleanup process to move forward, it's helpful for smoke and soot to be removed from your home. DIY methods of removing smoke and soot are often ineffective, and in order to ensure that smoke and soot is removed from your home, it can be useful to contact fire damage restoration professionals.

3. Cleaning and Restoration

The final steps in the fire cleanup process generally involve cleaning and restoration. Even after soot and smoke are removed, smoke cleaning is performed by ozone machines and air scrubbers in order to fully restore the air quality and eliminate the odor of smoke inside the home. Your home will also be sanitized and cleaned using specialized methods. Additionally, timely restoration can often bring damaged items, such as upholstery, carpets and even documents, back to life.

Fire and smoke damage can devastate a home, and uncertainty about the cleanup process can make you feel more stressed. You can feel prepared for the cleanup and restoration process by knowing that the cleanup process often involves an assessment and board-up, soot and smoke removal, and cleaning and restoration.

The Importance of a Security Fence After a Fire

6/27/2019 (Permalink)

Protect your property in Keeneyville, IL after a fire with security fencing

The Importance of a Security Fence After a Fire

After your business or commercial properties have been affected by fire, the security of your entire company could be at risk. Naturally, officials from the fire department or public safety will tell you when it is safe for personnel to enter the building or stay away, but what about the equipment, belongings, and buildings? A temporary security fence could be the thing you need to protect against

  • Theft
  • Vandalism
  • Trespassing
  • Looters
  • Liability

After emergency teams leave your property, you'll be responsible for the security of the land, buildings, and possessions inside the buildings. If someone gets hurt on that property, even if they are there without permission, you could be liable for those injuries.

Potential Dangers to Intruders

There are a number of potentially dangerous situations after a fire. Although fire damage remediation and reconstruction professionals may be coming and going, other people may trespass while those professionals are away. Those interlopers could be exposed to leaking gas, damaged electric lines, slips on water, or weakened floors. A security fence around your property may keep these intruders out and protect you from legal actions.

Damages Done by Trespassers

If unauthorized people enter your property and cause further damage, your insurance company may refuse to pay for those damages. On the other hand, your agent may recommend installing fencing around the perimeter of your Keeneyville, IL, commercial property. When this is the case, act quickly on the advice of the agent to prevent new damages.

Protect Your Property With Security Fencing

Fire damage can be a source of a lot of destruction. The installation of a security fence could prevent new harm and legal charges. When it's safe to return to your property, but construction hasn't yet been completed, tightened security may reduce losses due to theft, vandalism and damages that the insurance company won't cover, and legal liability for injuries that trespassers suffer.

4 Crucial Steps To Take After a Pipe Burst

6/25/2019 (Permalink)

Contact your insurance company

4 Crucial Steps To Take After a Pipe Burst

Over time, your commercial building may be vulnerable to a variety of perils, including bursting pipes and water damage. In addition to making a mess, significant water seepage can threaten the integrity of your facility and business operations. To minimize downtime and preserve your property and financial investments, you should complete several crucial tasks when a pipe breaks.

1. Shut Off the Water Supply

If a pipe breaks inside your facility, you should promptly restrict flow to the damaged supply line by turning off the water main. Then, contact a licensed plumber to fix the broken pipe and restore your building's water supply.

2. Contact Your Insurance Company

Most commercial insurance policies cover a variety of incidents, including bursting pipes. You should contact your agent to verify specific coverage details and initiate a claim. To receive compensation, you may need to provide video or photographic evidence of the destruction as well as a list of damaged items and their value.

3. Commence Cleanup Efforts

If not promptly cleaned, extensive water infiltration can result in mold contamination. To prevent this, promptly soak up standing fluid and remove saturated items from the area. Because wet building materials, such as drywall, insulation and carpeting, can harbor mold spores, you should also discard these items.
Once damp objects are removed, commence drying efforts. To expedite the process, utilize fans and dehumidifiers. A professional water damage restoration company can help you manage the project and efficiently complete these important procedures.

4. Ensure the Space Is Dry

Finalizing repairs and resuming normal business operations are likely your next top priorities. However, replacing carpet and drywall before the space is fully dry may result in secondary damage requiring mold remediation. To minimize this risk, employ moisture meters to verify the absence of dampness before proceeding.
Bursting pipes can cause significant water damage inside any Schick, IL, building. A prompt response can minimize financial loses, protect your building from additional destruction and make it appear “Like it never even happened."

What You Should Know About Filing an Insurance Claim for Water Damage

6/13/2019 (Permalink)

Water damage in an Ontarioville, IL home

Water damage can wreak havoc on your home in Ontarioville,IL, and can lead to some pretty unpleasant outcomes. It's important to deal with any destruction as soon as it occurs. Filing an insurance claim right away may end up benefitting you in more ways than one. Here are the steps you should take if your home has been affected.

Document the Damage

Undoubtedly, your insurance company will want to see the destruction that has occurred. Be sure to take pictures before anything is moved so that everything is properly documented. Write down any items that you may need to be reimbursed for. You will want to give your insurance company as much information as possible about each of your possessions. Here is are some things they may ask about your belongings:

  • How long you've had it
  • The original price
  • Where you bought it
  • The model number

Go Over Your Policy

Generally, it is a good idea to review your policy before you file an insurance claim. This way you can understand what type of coverage you have when you call your company. You may find that the amount that you are reimbursed depends on what caused the damage in the first place. Often times, if you've had a pipe burst or been through a natural disaster such as a flood, you are more likely to receive money than if you had a plumbing issue or a problem with a household appliance that you left untreated for a long period of time. Issues that arise due to negligence may not be covered.

Filing an insurance claim is a process, so you want to make sure you cover all of your bases before you call your company. If you are unsure about anything in your policy, ask questions. The sooner you get this taken care of, the better off you'll be when you call a water damage specialist to come take care of the issue.