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Smart Steps for Preventing Water Damage in Your Home

8/17/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Smart Steps for Preventing Water Damage in Your Home Water damage is one of the most expensive things for homeowners to fix.

Finding water in your home where it shouldn’t be isn’t fun and can be expensive to resolve. Fortunately, with simple preventative steps, you may be able to quickly repair a water leak before it becomes a pricey problem.

Where To Look for Water Leaks

The key to preventing water damage is to find and stop leaks as soon as possible. This means monitoring everything in your home that contains and carries water. You should look in and around the following appliances and systems:

• Pipes
• Toilets
• Sinks
• Tubs and showers
• Washers
• Dishwashers
• Refrigerators
• HVAC units

Things You Can Do To Spot and Stop Water Leaks

Whenever you notice water in your home that doesn’t belong, don’t just write it off – look into it to confirm you don’t have a leak. When water is present, thoroughly dry the area with a fan or dehumidifier, and call a water damage restoration company.

You also should periodically inspect each appliance and system to spot leaks or anything that would indicate a leak, such as a musty smell or rusty water. Review your water bill; a higher one could indicate a problem.

Make sure you know how to shut off your water main. In the event of a major leak, turning off the water is the first step to stopping it. Turn off your water when you'll be away from home for a significant amount of time to reduce the risk of undetected leaks.

When To Call in the Professionals

Regular inspections and maintenance of your plumbing, appliances, and HVAC system are crucial for preventing water in your home. You can talk to a contractor in San Marcos, TX, to get a recommended maintenance schedule for each system.

In addition to spotting potential or emerging issues, a contractor also can perform needed maintenance or repairs. This can include replacing tubes and coils, performing pipe cleanup to prevent blockage and overflow, and fixing a broken pipe.

Professional contractors can also help you install a water detection system either for individual appliances or for the whole home. These detectors will spot what you can’t and give you advanced warning of a developing leak.

Water damage is one of the most expensive things for homeowners to fix. By getting in the habit of looking for issues, such as a broken pipe, and regularly scheduling professional maintenance, you can avoid any unexpected problems. For more information, visit

Can FEMA Help Repair Your Flooded Home?

7/22/2018 (Permalink)

A severe storm rolled through San Marcos, TX, causing flooding. Your home suffered significant damage. You contacted your insurance company. Now what? FEMA, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, may be able to provide additional assistance.

Under its Individuals and Households Program, the agency can provide funds to assist with temporary housing costs, storm-related home repairs and other expenses. To receive aid, you must do the following:

• Meet eligibility requirements
• Complete an application
• Allow your home to be inspected

How Do You Apply for Assistance?

First, you need to determine if your county is included in the disaster declaration, a designation issued by the President. Individuals residing outside of specifically defined disaster areas are not eligible for FEMA assistance.

Everyone seeking aid must complete an application, either online, through the agency’s toll-free Helpline or at a Disaster Recovery Center. All applicants must be U.S. citizens, permanent residents or non-citizen nationals.

To prevent fraud, the agency will verify every applicant’s identity. Applicants will also be required to provide proof of ownership or occupancy of the damaged residence.

What’s Next?

After receiving your application, the agency will assign an inspector to conduct an onsite inspection of your home. The inspector will assess and document flood damage to your property to verify needed repairs. This vital information allows the agency to evaluate the assistance you may qualify for.

It is important to understand that any financial assistance received is intended to cover costs not covered by your insurance. Proper documentation of your flood-related insurance claims is part of the application process.

Once the inspection is complete, the agency will finalize your application and send written notice outlining the assistance you are eligible to receive. It will also provide specific instructions explaining how the funds should be utilized.

Victims of storm-related flooding face a daunting recovery process, often requiring extensive cleanup and restoration. Eligible individuals can, however, receive assistance from FEMA to alleviate some of the burden of this process.

Effective Ways To Get Smoke Odor out of Your House

7/15/2018 (Permalink)

Of all the disasters that could occur in your home, fire is among the worst. The worst fires can completely destroy your home and everything inside. Even minor blazes can damage valuables. Another effect fires leave behind is the smell of smoke that remains. You may find yourself doing some smoke cleaning weeks or even months after the event. Fortunately, there are some effective methods of removing the awful stench of smoke and the damage it can cause.

Do it Quickly.

Even the slightest amount of smoke in your home can causes problems. You don’t want to waste any time before you work on eliminating the smoke odor. The longer the smoke sits in your San Marcos, TX, home, the greater chance it has of seeping into walls, carpet, furniture and other parts of your home. It’s important to immediately open windows and ventilate the house. Then, you should get right to work.

What Materials Are Best?

Luckily, it’s not hard to get your hands on the right equipment and supplies to combat smoke damage. Some of the best smoke cleaning tools are the following:

• Air filtration devices
• Ozone machines
• Thermal foggers

Why Choose Professional-Grade Supplies?

Air filtration, ozone machines and thermal foggers are designed especially for some of the worst smoke odors and damages from smoke. Professional restoration companies use these devices to help ensure a home is as close to its original state as possible.

Take Caution.

If you decide to use this equipment and these materials yourself, take proper precautions before cleaning. Make sure you wear gloves, eye protection and a mask on your face. This will keep harmful particles from getting into your lungs and off your skin.

Smoke cleaning isn’t something you want to do, but you’re grateful there are solutions to overcome these terrible effects. Consult an expert today on how to use this equipment and which will work best in your situation.

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Why Bleaching Will Not Solve Your Mold Problem

7/10/2018 (Permalink)

If you’ve located mold in your San Marcos, TX, facility, you might reach for a container of chlorine bleach to clean up the mess. After all, it’s supposed to clean and disinfect better than anything else, right? Well, yes and no. While bleaching may be the best solution in some situations, this is not the case with fungus cleanup.

Bleaching Is Not the Answer.

There are several reasons why you should never use bleach to clean up mold, and all of them are rooted in science:

• Mold spores spread “roots” into the surfaces they inhabit. These roots reach deep beneath the surface and are difficult to get rid of without the right kind of cleaning product.
• Bleaching doesn’t treat beneath the surface. Bleaching is only effective on hard, nonporous surfaces. Most of the materials in your facility, except for glass or tile, do not fit this description. Bleach cannot “soak in” to surfaces such as wood, concrete or carpet, which means that bleaching will leave the roots intact beneath the surface.
• Bleaching removes the stain but doesn’t prevent mold growth. While bleaching does make something look clean, that doesn’t necessarily mean it is clean, at least not beneath the surface. Just because the stain is gone doesn’t mean that the root cause of the problem is.

Bleaching Makes Things Worse.

When it comes to fungus cleanup, not only does bleaching not solve the problem, but it can actually make it worse. Bleaching leaves behind lots of water – the prime ingredient for mold. This will cause mold to grow in new places, in addition to the original problem area, and it could easily come back with impressive force.

Researching Is the Way to Go.

When you need to handle a proper cleanup of mold, you need to find effective ways to eradicate not only the surface mold but the roots as well. Researching the best products, methods, and  professionals specializing in fungus cleanup puts you at a huge advantage and ensures your problem is taken care of properly and thoroughly.

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5 Simple Steps for Flushing a Water Heater

6/25/2018 (Permalink)

Homeowners in San Marcos, TX, are known for keeping their properties well maintained. One of the easier tasks is flushing a hot water heater, which can prevent serious damage to your home. Here’s how you can perform a water heater flush with no fuss, no muss:

1. Turn Off the Heater Element.

For electric heaters, you can shut off the circuit breaker; for gas, turn off the gas valve. You may consider running the hot water for a bit after shutting it off to let the tank cool down.

2. Connect the Hose and Choose a Drainage Area. 

Connect a garden hose to the drain valve on the bottom of the tank and run it out to the lawn. Choose an area where sediment won’t cause problems. If you haven’t let the tank cool down, use gloves and a heat-tolerant hose.

3. Drain the Tank. 

Open the drain valve and allow the water to run for a few minutes. Next, turn on a hot water faucet; this allows the water to flow freely. Wait a couple minutes and then shut off the incoming water supply to the water heater tank. You can now also open the pressure valve on top of the tank if you put a bucket under the discharge pipe. After the water stops flowing, briefly turn on the water supply to the tank to clear out any remaining sediment.

4. Close the Valves and Resupply the Water. 

Close the pressure valve on top of the tank along with the drain valve, but don’t turn off the faucet yet. Turn on the water supply to the tank and go to the open faucet. It will sputter and pop at first while it purges the tank of air. When this stops, the tank is full and you can turn off the faucet.

5. Restore Power or Gas to the Heating Element.

Wait for the tank to fill up. Once the tank is full, turn the heating element back on.

Flushing your water heater can save time and trouble down the road. If your tank is already leaking or you have other questions, it’s best to contact restoration specialists who serve San Marcos, TX.

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Which Upgrades Lower Water Consumption the Most?

6/18/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial Which Upgrades Lower Water Consumption the Most? Shop flooded after water loss

Lowering water consumption can be a major step toward making any commercial property more efficient. Property owners considering upgrades to reduce water consumption should keep track of interior and exterior water usage at each property. Most water issues can be resolved by a water upgrade and regular monitoring.

The exterior of a commercial property can soak up the most water, particularly if the property owner maintains grass or planters. Drip irrigation has an efficiency rating of 98%, whereas spray irrigation only achieves a 65% rating. If you rely on any irrigation technology at your property, you should:

• Choose efficient drip irrigation designs
• Adjust the settings of the irrigation system on a seasonal basis
• Try watering less and adjust the schedule to support healthy plants or landscaping
• Use rain or weather sensors to monitor moisture levels in soil

If your commercial property does not have an irrigation system or you have already optimized this system to limit water consumption, there are many interior water issues that you can tackle to lower usage. Start with the bathrooms and any kitchen areas in a commercial property.

• Install aerators and flush valves
• Invest in touch-free faucets to save water over time
• Choose one-pint or water free urinals
• Install efficient appliances such as dishwashers

Sinks, showers, and toilets are often some of the most wasteful components in a commercial property. If your property also has an irrigation system, you may want to track water usage with separate meters. This can also help you reduce your overall water bill, as irrigation systems that are not metered separately may also carry sewer charges.

Any water upgrade listed above can amount in a reduction in water bills, solutions to water issues, and increased efficiency. If a commercial property in San Marcos, TX suffers a leak or water damage from any source, the owner should contact a commercial restoration service.

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A Business Owner’s Guide to Commercial Flood Insurance

6/13/2018 (Permalink)

Flooding caused by severe storms or other natural disasters can be devastating for businesses small and large. With an uptick in severe and unseasonal weather across the United States, it is important that business owners in flood-prone areas such as San Marcos, TX, understand that standard commercial insurance plans do not cover weather-related flood damage. Business owners in flood-prone areas should consider purchasing flood insurance if they believe that their company may be at risk. The following factors should be considered when deciding the correct course of action for you and your business:

Location and Weather.

Coastal regions aren’t the only places that are susceptible to flooding. Areas that receive heavy amounts of snow followed by warm springs as well as locations that receive year-round rains are also prone to floods.

High Risk vs. Low Risk.

Even if your business is not located in a high-risk area, you still may want to consider purchasing flood insurance. According to FEMA, roughly 20 percent of claims come from businesses located outside of high-risk areas.


FEMA calculates that just 1 inch of flooding can cause roughly $27,000 in damage, which can set you back significantly. Having an insurance plan in place that covers the full restoration of your property immediately following a flood will allow you to focus on getting your business back to where it was prior to the storm.


Insurance companies typically take about 30 days to process new policies. Don't wait for a storm to brew before purchasing your insurance plan. Assess the risks early on and purchase a plan before it’s too late.

Even if not required to purchase flood insurance, responsible business owners should always weigh their risks and consider all their options when it comes to fully protecting their livelihood. Remember, it only takes one flood to hurt a business, so talk to your insurance provider today to see what plan is best for you.

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3 Steps To Take Following a Commercial Fire

5/19/2018 (Permalink)

3 Steps To Take Following a Commercial Fire

If your commercial property has recently experienced a fire, you may be at a loss about what to do next. Fires disrupt business and can be very costly. It is a good idea to take steps toward fire restoration as soon as possible to limit the amount of money you lose and the extent of the damage to the property. Here are three steps that you can take to start handling the situation as soon as the fire has been extinguished.

1. Contact your insurer. Contact your insurer and discuss the extent of the damage as well as whether commercial damage remediation services are covered by your policy. You will need to document the full extent of damage to your property, including contents, in order to file a claim.

2. Contact a restoration service. If your fire insurance covers part or all of the cost of restoration, you should work with a company that accepts your insurance. Some fire restoration companies specialize in certain services such as smoke cleaning while others provide a full array of fire, smoke, and water cleanup services.

3. Schedule an assessment. Once you determine what your insurance will cover and what the restoration company you have chosen will do, you should schedule an assessment as soon as possible. Damage from fire and smoke will worsen over time. You can limit the extent of this damage by not touching or walking through the affected area and by boarding up holes in the structure. You can board up or fence off the damage yourself or rely on the restoration company.

A fire in a commercial property is a challenge, but full fire restoration is possible. Contact a certified commercial damage restoration company in San Marcos, TX covered by your insurance that provides all of the services you need, from drying out the property to soot and smoke cleaning.

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Saving Precious Artwork When Mold Attacks

5/12/2018 (Permalink)

Anyone with precious artworks fears the damage that can occur when the canvas, paint, and water meet. Whether it is an unexpected flood in San Marcos, TX, excess humidity during storage, or a wet summer, the resulting moisture can wreak havoc on paintings and precious papers by introducing spores that may result in the need for mold cleaning.

Moldy Causes

Any organic item that is stored in an environment which is dark and damp can be affected by mold.
Painting casualties often include:

• Canvas
• Paper
• Wood
• Paint
• Glue

Mold can be an insatiable fungus that feasts on almost all organic materials. Furthermore, if a painting becomes part of a flooded storage room or basement, mold damage is almost sure to occur.

Expert Intervention

Experts in mold remediation advise methods of mold cleaning can depend on the value of the painting or drawing. If the artwork is extremely rare or valuable, a professional conservator may be the best option. Not only can he or she provide information on how to handle the delicate art, but he or she may also be able to provide the restoration services. Whether the artwork surface is acrylics, oils, charcoal, or watercolors, determining how to handle the surface may be very complicated.

Attacking Mold

When attempting to remove mold yourself, be careful not to wipe the mold off the painting. Pulling the mold across the canvas can stain and smear the unpolluted sections. Also, care should be taken in the products used to remove the fungus growths because most cleaning products can contain acid which can do irreparable damage to artwork.

Before removing the mold, make sure the artwork is completely dry by placing it in direct sunlight for between two and five days. The short time in the sun can help combat the mold and make it easier to remove. Then take a deep breath and formulate a mold cleaning plan of attack.

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Protecting Your Pets During a Fire Emergency

5/7/2018 (Permalink)

Any fire emergency in a San Marcos, TX, home can be devastating, but losing a pet during a fire can make the situation even more tragic. To prevent this from happening, there are several pet safety tips you should put in place to protect your furry friends from potential harm:

Include Pets in Your Evacuation Plans

• Put someone in charge of making sure your animals are with you during an evacuation.
• Make sure your pets will respond when they are called. Practice calling them when there are distractions so you are confident they will respond appropriately in a fire emergency.
• Have a firebox in your home that contains any important pet information (ownership documents, vaccination records, veterinarian information, etc.) that you can easily take with you during an evacuation.
• Put a pet first aid kit with your family’s first aid supplies so you can grab it without wasting additional time during an evacuation.
• Stick a “pet alert” window cling on a front window or door that indicates how many pets you have and where they are in the house. This helps firefighters locate your pets during a fire.
• Do not try to find a pet if they don’t respond. The most important thing to do is make sure you and your family get out of the house safely.

Have Pet Plans in Place for After a Fire

Most residential fires result in serious damage that may mean you have to stay someplace else until your house is cleaned, repaired and restored. This can take several days or longer; during this time, you may need to board your pets or temporarily house them with friends or family. As part of your pet preparation, consider boarding your pets or having them visit your friends before there is a fire so they can adjust more easily when there is an emergency.

Surviving a fire emergency can be traumatic for you and your pets. Restoring your home to a livable condition is crucial to getting your life back to normal. Restoration specialists in San Marcos, TX, can make the transition smoother and get you and your pets back home sooner.

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