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Tuesday
May102011

Prepare for Flood Season

Prepare For Flood Season

Educate Yourself.

After getting flood insurance, there are several things you can do to minimize losses in your home and ensure your family’s safety.
1. Safeguard your possessions. Create a personal “flood file” containing information about all your possessions and keep it in a secure place, such as a safe deposit box or waterproof container. This file should have:
    •    A copy of your insurance policies with your agent’s contact information.
    •    Conduct a household inventory: For insurance purposes, be sure to keep a written and visual (i.e., videotaped or photographed) record of all major household items and valuables, even those stored in basements, attics or garages. Create files that include serial numbers and store receipts for major appliances and electronics. Have jewelry and artwork appraised. These documents are critically important when filing insurance claims. For more information visit www.knowyourstuff.org.
    •    Copies of all other critical documents, including finance records or receipts of major purchases.
2. Prepare your house.
    •    First make sure your sump pump is working and then install a battery-operated backup, in case of a power failure. Installing a water alarm will also let you know if water is accumulating in your basement.
    •    Clear debris from gutters and downspouts.
    •    Anchor any fuel tanks.
    •    Raise your electrical components (switches, sockets, circuit breakers, and wiring) at least 12 inches above your home’s projected flood elevation.
    •    Place the furnace, water heater, washer, and dryer on cement blocks at least 12 inches above the projected flood elevation.
    •    Move furniture, valuables, and important documents to a safe place.
3. Develop a family emergency plan.
    •    Create a safety kit with drinking water, canned food, first aid, blankets, a radio, and a flashlight.
    •    Post emergency telephone numbers by the phone and teach your children how to dial 911.
    •    Plan and practice a flood evacuation route with your family. Know safe routes from home, work, and school that are on higher ground.
    •    Ask an out-of-state relative or friend to be your emergency family contact.
    •    Have a plan to protect your pets.
For more information on emergency preparation, visit Ready.gov.



Tuesday
May102011

How Do I Know If I Have Hidden Mold??

How Do I Know If I Have Hidden Mold?
Suspicion of hidden mold?
You may suspect hidden mold if a building smells moldy, but you cannot see the source, or if you know there has been water damage and residents are reporting health problems. Mold may be hidden in places such as the back side of dry wall, wallpaper, or paneling, the top side of ceiling tiles, the underside of carpets and pads, etc. Other possible locations of hidden mold include areas inside walls around pipes (with leaking or condensing pipes), the surface of walls behind furniture (where condensation forms), inside ductwork, and in roof materials above ceiling tiles (due to roof leaks or insufficient insulation).
Investigating hidden mold problems
Investigating hidden mold problems may be difficult and will require caution when the investigation involves disturbing potential sites of mold growth. For example, removal of wallpaper can lead to a massive release of spores if there is mold growing on the underside of the paper. If you believe that you may have a hidden mold problem, consider hiring an experienced professional.
Cleanup and Biocides
Biocides are substances that can destroy living organisms. The use of a chemical or biocide that kills organisms such as mold (chlorine bleach, for example) is not recommended as a routine practice during mold cleanup. There may be instances, however, when professional judgment may indicate its use (for example, when immune-compromised individuals are present). In most cases, it is not possible or desirable to sterilize an area; a background level of mold spores will remain – these spores will not grow if the moisture problem has been resolved. If you choose to use disinfectants or biocides, always ventilate the area and exhaust the air to the outdoors. Never mix chlorine bleach solution with other cleaning solutions or detergents that contain ammonia because toxic fumes could be produced.
Please note: Dead mold may still cause allergic reactions in some people, so it is not enough to simply kill the mold, it must also be removed.

Feel like you may have a mold problem? Click here to request a Member of the Certified Restoration Team to check your home.

Source:  www.epa.gov


Thursday
Jul172008

Welcome to the Certified Restoration Team Website!

Coming soon! The Certified Restoration Team website.

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